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Six Kingdoms: Apocalypse -- Gameplay Topic (IC)

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IC [Zataka - Irnakk’s Tooth, w. Yumiwak & Co.]

The titan followed Yumiwak into the darkness. There was something strange about this place. Besides the fact that they were hurrying to get deeper inside an active volcano. Something was seriously off here, Zataka could feel it. But a deal was a deal. Whatever the Skakdi princess was going for had better be worth it, or they would have to have...words.

You don’t belong here, but here you are. Welcome.

Their footsteps echoed in the tunnel as they moved further in, a dull thudding in rhythm with her own heartbeat. She hadn’t realized she’d gone up in frequency that much. Ahead, Korio and Yumiwak’s silhouette’s disappeared around a bend as they continued their charge. Zataka followed, only to find them gone once the passage straightened out again. She slowed her pace, feeling a sort of mental itch telling her that someone or something was messing with her. The grip on her blade tightened. 

You could be so much more.

She tried to reach out to the shadows surrounding her. She had hoped to not have to use too much of her abilities in front of the Skakdi, as to not tip her hand more than absolutely necessary to get what she needed. But this…
The titan let out a soft breath and reached out to the shadows, to banish them. At first it seemed like her attempts were ineffective - supporting that feeling of her perception being manipulated somehow. But then the shadows did part and the tunnel up ahead got brighter again. No sign of her Skakdi allies, but at this pace they must have gotten further ahead. She picked up her pace again and moved towards the brighter passages up ahead. Surprisingly it kept getting brighter still, until daylight stung right into her eyes from up ahead as she rounded another bend.

All you need do is let go.

She instinctively raised a hand and stepped back, to avoid getting hit in the momentary distraction. But no-one opened fire. But she did hear the faint sound of voices up ahead. Slowly again, she approached the end of the very-much-shorter-than-anticipated tunnel...and stepped out into rolling fields of tall grass, blown into mesmerizing patterns by strong winds. The air was laden with the salty smell of the sea. Up ahead the meadows faded into a haze, but rising from it in the distance were shimmering towers of crystal, piercing into the sky like needles of glass.

Welcome home.


A figure emerged, standing up from the tall grass as the titan approached. The figure was a villager - she recognized them, but couldn’t remember their name. But they certainly did because as soon as their eyes met the villager cried out: Zataka!

As soon as the name was uttered, more figures appeared. Had they all been hiding in the field? The first villager hurried towards her, but they seemed joyful, happy to see her. The others approached her too. ‘Zataka!’ ‘Welcome home!’ ‘We missed you!’ ‘Where have you been? Tell us of your journeys!’

Soon, she was surrounded by a crowd. No, not just a crowd. Her people. They clamored to get close to her, to speak to her, to touch her. She could feel them brushing against her clothes and sides and without thinking, she raised her arms magnanimously, letting them brush across the top of her people as if to embrace them all.

More and more came, until she had a hard time seeing where she was walking. Their tugging at her got more forceful, their expressions of joy blended together in a cacophony. Someone grabbed onto her arm. It was almost painful. She looked down and where there had been smiles, empty eyes gazed at her, distorted mouths wailed. She tried to push forward, but there were just too many bodies. They screamed and clawed at her, clinging to her legs, reaching higher, trying to drag her down, trampling each other in the process. The titan tried to fight them off, but found her body reacting sluggishly. Glancing down she trampled masses had sunken into the ground, which was more akin to tar. She was stuck. The bodies piled on to her until she could no longer move forward at all, knees buckling from the strain. In one final, desperate act, she raised her right arm, reaching for the crystal pillars up ahead, before the screaming mob dragged her down into the blackness.

Stay here.

The pulling on her continued as she sank lower. She could feel the darkness filling her nostrils, taking her breath away. She thrashed around, trying to shake it off, but to no avail. Star began to explode in her vision, the signs of asphyxia taking hold.

Let go.

The stars continued to spread, but she no longer fought it. There was no point. She felt oddly detached from herself. Powerless to stop what would happen next, doomed to watch. And with the detachment her own perspective shifted too. She still felt her body, but saw herself from afar, drifting among the stars now, a lifeless body hurtling through eternity. She tried one last, straining against a cruel fate, only for her body to give out at last and shatter. But she still watched. And realized the crumbling figure of herself was a great spirit in its own right - except there were no survivors. Air and water were blown out into the void and with them anything alive that had been protected by her before.

:Only if I give in!:


Zataka’s eyes shot open and she saw her fingers dug deep into the dirt in front of her like Rahi talons. Her lungs were burning and with a huge gasp she drew in air. Her mind began to clear. And with the clarity came anger. She activated her Suletu, pushing back against the presence that she’d felt bearing down on her since the moment she’d set foot into these tunnels.

:Destroy me or let me pass, but do not toy with me!:

The titan got back up to her feet and rolled her shoulders. Her weapons were still next to her. Good. With set eyes, she began to follow the passage again, mask still active, but this time reaching out to her Skakdi allies, trying to find their presence on the mental plane.

:Still there, princess?:

 

OOC: @EmperorWhenua @Unreliable Narrator, and yes, her ego even extends to nightmare visions like that =P


IC [Metru Koro]

A small lizard was warming itself, lying on top of the warm rubble that was left of Vhisola’s hut. Twin rows of strange barbs growing from its back caught the hot rays of light. Today was a lot noisier than usual in this place. How bothersome. It passively watched the source of the noise, the two Toa loudly talking, with its six eyes, forked tongue darting out every now and then to moisten them. 

If they kept this up it’d have to go over and ask them to keep it down.

 

OOC: @Onaku @Tarn

 

IC: [Nixie - Kini-Koro]
 

Quote

 

IC: Klawne (Kini-Koro, Po-Kou Shelter) - Solid Ground


Klawne turned to Nixie. "Yes? Don’t worry, everything’s hunky-dory out there. Okuo and Triage will be back soon."

 


The former astronomer made a noise that sounded...assuaged, but not completely without worry. Maybe it was just imagination, but it sounded like she was trying to say I hope so.


Just then, a small ruckus broke out between the other afflicted. There’d been a lot of air traffic over the settlement today and the transformed Matoran were pushing against each other to get the best view, which in turn made them lash out at each other in annoyance. Two of them were currently tussling on the ground, hissing and snarling.


Nixie spun around, took one glance at the situation and then with a snarl, barreled into the midst of the quarrel with her head lowered, using it to knock whoever happened to be on top at the moment flat on their back. They protested loudly, but Nixie flashed her Rhotuka as a warning, hissing.

OOC: @Toru Nui

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IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

Knichou frowned. Dume's assassin, the woman who had delayed Tuyet's ascension, possibly long enough to prevent her from stopping the collapse, had gained the powers of a great disk, AND a giant robot? This was... extremely worrying, regardless of what Kini-Koro's resident emotionless archivist thought of her intentions. The ex-Ghost was also surprised to hear that Sidra and Leklo had both acquired great disks.

"Wait, are there three sets of great disks?"

Edited by BULiK
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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

All things carry a cost, Stannis thought to himself, whether they be knowledge, power, or wealth, and it was only right that this NUVA boon would take something vital from its recipient. Hearing that it had cost Atamai his emotions touched the Wanderer in an unexpected way, as though it somehow made the two beings more alike in some way, and he considered the possibility that Atamai may in fact be oe of the few people who would be forced to view life and history in as scientifically objective a fashion as himself, if the absence of emotion was indeed to be taken as what it purported to be. For what it was worth, Stannis was still unsure what to share with him and what to refrain from speaking—clarity did not always equate to open mindedness

Take for an example the' Once-Brother, Oreius, who's moral compass had become more militant and detached than almost anyone else Stannis knew, yet the clarity of focus he possessed was from seeing the world in blacks and whites. While he saw with sharp focus akin to catching a deer in a nighttime spotlight, it was only because he only understood the contrasts between things. Clarity was taken to an extreme with him, tainted by the lenses he already viewed the world through, incapable of understanding the contexts and shadings life was rife with. 

"Dume's assassin?" he finally said with uncertain sentiment, though it could be understood as uneasy surprise. He harkened back to those fateful hours in the Coliseum when he had fought tooth and nail to ensure the Pilot's survival from the grasping hands of the Dark Hunters, only to ultimately fail at preserving him utterly in the end as he realized the futility in protecting the man who so brazenly would toy with Destiny with a mad sense of hope. In the end, Dume became what he feared, a puppet for the god he should have grown wise to, and had to be put down at long last regardless. 

Stannis still flinched at the memory. He remembered Zataka's curious look as she turned to the wizard and inquired as to the usefulness of the markings adorning the ancient Builder's body before the Pilot reanimated and began to claw and gnash at Zataka in his first throes as an untethered. The warlord asked him if the tattoos would have been any meanings that could be useful to them there and then, and Stannis had dismissed them, called them "ancient obsessions" while knowing full well what they were and what they contained and how he might indeed regain their abilities with just a scarce touch on the grafted sigils. If only he'd simply reached out and felt them! he cursed to himself. He'd studied only some of them before, long before the end of the Ark while still masquerading in the body of the true Stannis Hagah, and it pained him to see a man who radiated such incredible energy from his very skin ultimately succumb to the heartless powers of Mata Nui. He choked back tears as he gave the final verdict to the esteemed man and the secrets he yet contained by simply bidding Zataka to "immolate it." And then it was over, Dume was nothing more than a pile of ash, and the adornments he wore were forgotten like a dream. 

Dume was unsavable in the end and Stannis bore no ill will towards Sidra; she was not the one who murdered the memory of Dume; that responsibility fell on Mata Nui. He said as much to Atamai, feeling the need to share at least some parts of the truth with him. "Dume was not killed by any Dark Hunter. In the end, his life was taken away by none other than the god he pledged himself to. The Great Spirit who taught his Matoran to live in Unity would have coalesced all creation under his banner of death, and for the merest seconds he had done so with Dume." He let the matter settle a moment as they walked in silence.

"Do either of you know where Leklo is?" he asked as his mind recollected itself in the present. "I would like to speak with him about his companion, Korruhn."

@~Xemnas~ @BULiK

Edited by EmperorWhenua
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IC: Ostrox (Kini-Koro, Far Shore Rift) - If I Die, I Will Kill You

Ostrox reappeared before Nuju and Sidra. "I’m back now." He helpfully pointed out.

"I don’t suppose there’s any further details you’d like to divulge before I venture beyond the veil, is there?"

@Unreliable Narrator@Nato the Traveler

 

IC: NU-8020S (Kini-Koro, The Ambling Alp) - Ambling Onto the Ambling

NU-8020S followed Vulimai and Nale aboard the Ambling Alp. Who named this ship?

@Sparticus147@Tarn@Harvali

 

IC: Klawne (Ko-Pou Shelter) - I Don't Care Who Started It

Klawne tried to position herself in the middle of the transformed Matoran, to break up the roughhousing. "Whoa, whoa whoa whoa, hey! We’ll have none of that in here!"

@Vezok's Friend

Edited by Toru Nui
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Profile picture done by Onaku.

:infected:

 

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IC: Xaril - Crimson Galleon/Metru-Koro

Those in Metru-Koro would soon see a ragged red shape shift into view overhead, vapour trailing in its wake.

The airship shuddered slightly as it swiftly decelerated over the windswept remnants of the abandoned village. It shifted orientation, then began to sink, carefully lowering itself amidst the toppled shanties and makeshift shelters. The ramp lowered, crushing a tattered tent as it settled on the sand. Xaril stomped down the ramp and onto the ash and dirt, towering over most of the diminutive structures. 

If he felt any concern at placing himself and his ship at the mercy of an unknown number of potential enemies, it didn't show. He simply stood in silence as he waited for the medic and whoever else was with them to approach.

@Tarn @Onaku @BULiK

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IC: Triage - Metru-Koro Ruins

"OK, OK," Triage replied into the radio, watching the airship arrive and then settle down in the middle of the village. "Just breathe. We'll talk more when I get on board--we're not gonna lose this woman, alright?"

The medic was the first to step forward upon Xaril coming out to lead them aboard. "You're the 'League man' my colleague is talking about, I presume," Triage said, walking up the ramp with little hesitation. "Thank you for helping him, otherwise I don't know if he would have ever reached me in time."

@Onaku@BULiK@Nato the Traveler

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IC: Exuze, Metru-Koro

Exuze tried to follow Triage's advice but he couldn't truly begin to calm down until the airship touched down on solid ground. While Xaril confidently strode out to greet the medic, Exuze was knelt beside the Toa, bracing himself against the floor with his metallic arm and putting pressure on the Toa's wound with the other. The lesterin was watching her every movement, hyper-focused on trying to see if there were any signs of the situation improving, or worse - worsening. He watched the rise and fall of every breath, wondering which would be her last.

The welder-turned-nomad was broken from this Trance by Triage's voice nearby. It was a voice that brought equal parts pain and happiness, and Exuze hoped today's events would tilt that balance more towards the latter than the former. Exuze looked towards the ramp to see the Toa of plantlife travelling with another Toa.

"Over 'ere Doctah... thank Mata Nui... ya made it." The lesterin said, waving the Toa over with his mechanical arm. "She... she was babbling with some nonsense when we found 'er, I dunno 'er name."

IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

"Nope. Korruhn's another of us Toa made at the end of Dume's reign, right?"

Edited by BULiK
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IC: Xaril - Metru-Koro

Offering little more than a nod of confirmation and acknowledgement to those who approached him, Xaril let them board the ship and begin tending to the patient. Their intentions seemed earnest, and this was a time of ceasefire.

Until they said or did something to make themselves a threat, there was no reason for him to regard them as one. 

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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

"Correct, Knichou," Stannis said, then turned back to Atamai.

"Ah yes, 'dead.' I have dismissed those claims, and that is what I intend to talk with Leklo about: Korruhn is very much not dead."

@BULiK @~Xemnas~

Edited by EmperorWhenua
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IC: Skyra Daring - Kini-Koro - 

Skyra sipped on some sort of fruity drink, sitting back in a lawn chair as she looked up at the sky. Yeah, life was pretty good. 

"...retirement sucks..." Skyra threw the drink into a nearby wall before standing up. "...everyone makes it sounds like it's the greatest thing ever...but what the heck are you supposed to even do!?" She figured Rose was probably starting to feel something similar as well. It had been nice to not be a soldier after so long, but Skyra was really growing restless now, and that wasn't good for anyone. 

Rose was elsewhere at the moment, so Skyra left the house and decided to walk around the city and find something to do. "Maybe I could get into a fight with someone...doesn't matter who it is..." 

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IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

"Oh, that's a shame." Knichou told Atamai, before listening further and responding to Stannis. "Wonderful news!"

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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

"Korruhn's current exact whereabouts are a mystery to me, but I have some understanding of what transpired. He said he fought alongside you against an axe-wielding titanic warrior alongside the shores of the impure lake. That, I imagine, is where your knowledge ends. It seems he did not die but was suddenly transported to a strange plane of existence called the 'Far Shore.' When he came out from that plane, he was in the Archives, and in my company. We had some misadventures from that point. Presently, I can only assume he is somewhere south.

@~Xemnas~ @BULiK

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IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

This talk of Korruhn visiting the Far Shore was intriguing - it was hard to live in Kini-Koro without hearing Nuju's proposition of a voyage to that plane. Did... Korruhn cheat death? How did he manage to go to the Far Shore? Knichou had made a career of tinkering with the very fabric of his universe, and yet he was continually shown that was there was so much left to discover.

"When we spoke earlier, you said Korruhn was taken away nearly a month ago around when you were captured by Barius's warskaks - what makes you think he was taken south, or has stayed there, for that matter?"

Edited by BULiK
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IC, Atamai: Kini-Koro

The Far Shore? The place that Nuju wants people to journey into? thought Atamai. Interesting...

Atamai opened his mouth to ask how Stannis and Korruhn had become separated, but Knichou's words gave him more info to go on.

"Taken away? By who? Warskaks?" he asked.

@EmperorWhenua @BULiK

Edited by ~Xemnas~
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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

At that, the wizard shot a knowing look back at Knichou before he said, in somber answer to Atamai, "Yes, and a powerful one. Her name, if it has any meaning to you... is Miserix."

@BULiK @~Xemnas~

Edited by EmperorWhenua
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IC: Nuju | Kini-Nui
He let out a little whistle. 
"I can imagine such a hypothesis. It wouldn't surprise me, Sidra," Nuju said. "Although, I'm curious as to where this toa made her discovery. Until my own death, everything I knew was merely notes on a database. I suppose that's lost forever now." He paused, deep in thought. The sounds of Kini-Koro echoed from across the lake. Something was going on. Airships landed. Diplomats traveled in and out of portals. Ostrox returned before Nuju realized he'd stopped talking to Sidra and begun humming a gukko call. 
"Oh. You're back soon," Nuju stated academically. Ostrox was not back soon  -- Nuju just had a horrible perception of time. "Details? Yes I can provide further details. There are some things that exist as only one copy in all timelines. Anything that occurs to them in one reality occurs in all realities. Makoki Stones are such items. Riches however, are infinite. There is a possibility of bringing whatever pleases you most back when your adventure ends. Maybe you'll bring back your lord."

OOC: @Nato the Traveler, @Toru Nui

IC: Grime | Kumu Peninsula
"Well, recite it." Grime felt his arm wave apologetically but the words were his own. It should be Korruhn that opened the door. Miserix had no intention of setting off the alarm herself. 

OOC: @Crimson Jester

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Happy chat.

 

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IC: Triage - Crimson Galleon

Triage continued inside the ship, crouching besides Exuze and the injured Toa. Her appearance was grim, to say the least. "People tend to say odd things when they're losing blood," he said, setting down his satchel. "Not enough going to the head to make sense. But..."

His Kanohi glowed. He placed his hand on the unknown Toa's abdomen and closed his optics. Closing up wounds was something he was accustomed to doing--the Bo-Toa just hoped he'd gotten here in time. 

"...some of us are gifted with Kanohi that can fill the gaps when modern medicine cannot."

@Onaku@BULiK@Nato the Traveler@Unreliable Narrator

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IC: Korruhn, Kumu Peninsula

The heat from the door grew more intense with each waiting moment, as did Korruhn's anticipation. He had found many great things within temples in his life, but, then again, he had never been in a temple of the Makuta. Regardless, he was prepared to meet whatever fate may greet him beyond the mysterious door to nowhere.

Goodbye 

Mighty warrior

Cleaver of skies

Meek gardner

Tender of lies

Hello

The incantation left his mouth with such ease and cadence, that one would presume he had spoken it a thousand times before. Korruhn's palm began to quiver.

OOC: @Unreliable Narrator

 

Edited by Crimson Jester
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IC: Sidra - Kini-Nui

"Okay... okay... then I'll help," she finally said. She'd gotten in the way last time, stopped Tuyet from trying to use the machine until it was too late. Maybe this was her chance to get it right, to help instead of hinder? "You get to meet your god, we avoid being destroyed by a paradox, and Tuyet gets to say I-told-you-so."

She moved closer to the portal. Everyone wins... I hope. 

Taking a deep breath, she steadied herself, then stepped through into the Far Shore. 

@Unreliable Narrator

 

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IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

Knichou raised a concerned eyebrow as Stannis looked to him. An Aspect using their magic to control a Toa. How... familiar sounding...

The engineer thought back to the conversation with Stannis that morning. So... the magic of Aspects was truly just another tool, then? A technology that Knichou simply didn't yet understand...

Could Whisper teach him? Or perhaps the key lied in the various temples that Stannis had explored? Even if the Toa of iron wouldn't use it, to understand it was vital. By knowing how this terrifying power could be used, Knichou might discover how to prevent against it, or how to free those he cared about from the magical strings of their puppetmasters.

Stannis being coy earlier about how he managed to tame Aurax made perfect sense now - while the elder Toa was able to use this island's magic for good, he was still decidedly against the influence of the djinns on the Matoran. Revealing that it was possible to gain their powers would lead to many adventurers seeking it out, and telling Vulimai that he had wielded it himself would undermine the credibility of his warnings against taking such strange powers for oneself. After all, to many matoran, Stannis probably already looked like a stubborn old man (Moreso than usual) for his distrust of Whisper and her gifts.

That knowledge in the wrong hands... there were already enough... aspects... of Aspects for the commander to be concerned about. Knichou feared how that knowledge going public could upset the delicate peace that the Matoran had enjoyed for the past month.

"Does that name mean anything to you?" Knichou asked back. Miserix. The ex-Ghost had never heard the name. If Stannis said she was powerful, than she was, and clearly forcefully taking Korruhn away wasn't the action of an ally. However Stannis learned of Miserix, Knichou hoped the Maru had learned more that those two facts.

IC: Exuze, Metru-Koro, The Crimson Galleon

As Triage knelt down, Exuze instinctively took his hands off of the Toa and backed away slightly - he did not want to get in the way of the experienced medic's work. The maskless lesterin looked to the floor, having seen enough blood for a lifetime. He looked at his hands. Drenched. He began to wipe the Toa's blood off his hands with a spare bandage as he pondered.

What did he say, when he was bleeding out on the floor of the Taku?

How many last words has Triage heard?

Edited by BULiK
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IC Kanohi - Kini-Nui

Kanohi nodded, face reddening, “Thank you. I … I will try not to degrade myself. And thank you for taking care of the Matoran.” It was hard not to critique himself, it was even practical. Arguing, conflict; that was nerve-wracking and stressful. It was far easier to just admit he was probably wrong. And well, he was a fool, he made so many mistakes, failed to understand things, messed up frequently. The only reason he was in a position of authority was because Stannis appointed him there. 

Though he supposed he was getting better at things. He had learned to forge two kinds of disks, had finally made a powered mask, he had finally learned some of the crimes of the Matoran, and was trying to address that, haphazardly as it was. And Tobduk-Koro could be worse off.

He shook his head of such thoughts, and began to walk after the rest of the group into the Ampling Alps.

OOC: @Sparticus147 @Toru Nui @BULiK @Tarn

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"He may seem slow and strange to you, but his simple words often carry a hidden wisdom"-Turaga Vakama on Kapura

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IC: Ostrox (Kini-Koro, Far Shore Rift) - Prepare for Glory

Ostrox watched Sidra leave through the door made of light. He turned back to Nuju. "Let’s make this clear: I’m only doing this because our esteemed hosts refuse to do anything about our 'Great Spirit' problem. If I come back with nothing of value, well... I will not be recommending your services to others."

Lowering his mask and holding back laughter at his own words, Ostrox followed Sidra through the portal...

@Unreliable Narrator

 

IC: Achro (Kini-Koro) - Recurring Nightmare

Achro’s aimless wandering led him in the path of Skyra’s aimless wandering.

"Oh hey. You seem familiar. Have we met?"

@Snelly

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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

"Everyone is," he said ominously. He took a moment to gather his thoughts before elucidating in due course. 

"Every Aspect of Makuta has an association with something... primal, for want of a better term, which guides their desires and actions. Some of these associations are seemingly innocuous to you, others change the world you perceive, and yet others can change you directly in fashions hard to imagine. Whisper shared with us her 'Grand Wish,' as they call them, and while hers seems relatively harmless for the Matoran in general, you have to realize there is an unspoken concept behind all this as well: That is, Aspects who attain their Wish possess the power to reshape reality.

"It is a magic, of a sort. It is not inherently good or evil, as I have said many times before, but it simply is. Whisper wants to become something other than what she is, and clearly holds no reservations that she can accomplish this profundity. Imagine, then, the possible consequences of an ascendant Aspect who wished for something more akin to, say, Dume's cataclysmic plan to remake history."

He let the idea linger. 

"Miserix's association is along those lines."

@~Xemnas~ @BULiK

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IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

The former Ghost took in the Maru's words. Reshaping reality? That kind of power was too great to be in the hands of anyone.

"So how do we stop her from accomplishing her wish, then? Is there a way to ensure she can't... beyond... well... killing her?"

Edited by BULiK
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BZPRPG Profiles - Exo-Force RPG Profiles - Six Kingdoms: Apocalypse (Knichou, Berys, Arnex, The Taku, Exuze)

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4 hours ago, Toru Nui said:

IC: Achro (Kini-Koro) - Recurring Nightmare

Achro’s aimless wandering led him in the path of Skyra’s aimless wandering.

"Oh hey. You seem familiar. Have we met?"

@Snelly

IC: Skyra Daring - Kini-Koro - 

Skyra had raised a fist in order to give this newcomer a knuckle sandwich, but she dropped her arm as...yes, she did in fact recognize the being before her, she cocked her head and stared at him for a while, trying to remember why he looked familiar.

”Ah!” It finally clicked, Skyra pointed at him dramatically. “You were there when Pridak finally kicked the bucket yeah?” 

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Skyra | Hakari | Oceanna | Taleen | Arisaka | Zanakra

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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

"I do not, no," he said in reply to both Atamai and Knichou's queries and sounding as frustrated as anyone could that it was all he could say. "The specifics are unknown to me. But I do know of one place in particular that could hold the answers we seek... And, what's more, I know of a relic that could help protect every one of us."

@~Xemnas~ @BULiK

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IC: Knichou, Kini-Koro

"What relic? Is this what you were looking for when you flew here? Does this temple house the answers we need?"

Edited by BULiK
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Visit www.BZPRPG.com to view my project of archiving BZPower's RPGs, and also access the BZPower Roleplaying Wiki

BZPRPG Profiles - Exo-Force RPG Profiles - Six Kingdoms: Apocalypse (Knichou, Berys, Arnex, The Taku, Exuze)

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IC Stannis | Kini-Koro

"I speak of the same relic I described to Sans a month ago: The Kanohi Avohkii. People thought it to be a fable, and the little blue fool thought as much, but it is no less real as the Mask you wear, Knichou. I intend to find it, but am not sure where it is, yet. Perhaps some answers to its location can be gleaned in the Kini-Nui."

@BULiK

Edited by EmperorWhenua
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IC: SidraThe Far Shore

Ta-Metru burned.

Flaming airships tumbled from the sky, bleeding Kanoka from ragged gashes in their hulls. Smoking towers collapsed into the streets in showers of rent metal and shattered glass. Gas lines ignited with sounds like thundercracks, drowning out the screams of the terrified Matoran caught up in the carnage.

And from where Sidra lay, sprawled on the cobblestones of the Coliseum, there was nothing she could do to stop it.

Her armour scorched and shattered, she rose weakly to her feet. She raised her sword, but struggled to keep it steady in her blood-slicked hands. Laughing, the two Skakdi standing between her and the exit advanced, weapons raised, and she stumbled forward to meet them…

* * *

Onu-Metru – 14 hours earlier

Sidra had no real idea of what to expect when she stepped through the Far Shore portal, but she most certainly hadn’t expected to find herself stumbling out onto the balcony of a tower, a bitter breeze biting at her face, a footstep away from snagging her ankles on a railing that was short for even a Matoran, and plummeting over it onto blackened rocks below.

It looked like she was in Onu-Metru, maybe. The familiar skyline of Metru-Nui seemed to shift and shimmer, the style and positions of buildings changing between her every eyeblink. The distant shapes seemed hazy and indistinct, like a mirage in the desert, or a simulation that hadn’t quite rendered in properly. It was almost as if the city was waiting for her to get closer before it decided what it wanted to be.

Assuming this was indeed Onu-Metru, she was clearly on the coast, going by the ragged ocean waves wracking the shoreline behind her. The waters seemed more turbid and turbulent than normal, murky with dirt and debris, lashing the rocks as if whipped to a frenzy by a coming storm… and though the sky was changing far more quickly than normal, there was no sign of heavy clouds.

The Lightstone Mine tower she stood upon changed as well as she walked around its ring balcony. The paint passed between several different hues as it simultaneously flaked away and was repainted fresh. The metal was both brand new and rusted with age, and the numbers on the elevator behind her jumped around at random until suddenly the world snapped into focus, the doors burst open, and a half-dozen sodden Onu-Matoran stumbled out.

“Woah, easy there, what’s going on?” She demanded.

They looked panicked. Their armour and apparel were muddy, and they smelled like seawater. Behind them, the elevator was already being called back down.

“We’re- wait, are you a Toa?” One of them blurted out.

Sidra stopped herself short of laughing in his face. She was about the right height, and wore a Kanohi. It was a forgivable mistake from someone who was clearly unfamiliar with her species. More than that, though… her rebirth had changed her. She wielded powers beyond what any of her kind had ever possessed before, beyond what any Toa had ever possessed. She wasn’t sure what she was anymore.

 “Sure, yeah,” she replied. “I’m uh, here to help. Now, what happened?”

“The lightstone mines… we’re evacuating,” a female Matoran panted. “After the explosion… the whole place is flooding…”

“An explosion flooded the mines?”

“Well, the quake earlier did most of the work,” another spoke up. “Water was already trickling in, then someone blew up our stock of mining explosives and let half the Silver Sea in.”

“I dunno about that,” the female Matoran interjected, “The blast was way too small for all of the explosives to have blown.”

“I saw the storage unit go up in smoke,” the previous Matoran snapped. “Are you doubting my eyes?”

“Well, you’ve never had the best attention to detail. I dunno how the karz you landed a job as supervisor…”

“Any idea who did this, or why?” Sidra snapped her fingers to get the group to focus back on her, “Did everyone get out alright?”

“No idea,” the first Matoran shrugged, which seemed to be all the response any of them had to offer for all three of her questions.

“Okay, great,” she grumbled. "I assume there’s an airship on its way to get you guys out of here?”

“I bloody well hope so.”

“Right, well I’ll stick around to make sure you guys get on board, then I need to get down there and figure out what’s going on.”

She had no idea if that was what she actually needed to do. But there was no Dark Hunter network to give her instructions, no ghostly Nuju on hand to offer advice, and she had to start somewhere. She’d ended up here for a reason. There was always a reason.

And then she felt it.

A thunderous vibration rumbled through the earth, rattling the tower. Support cables snapped with harsh metallic twangs as the ground shifted below. The entire tower tilted by a few degrees, only the scant few remaining cables keeping it from toppling. The Matoran grabbed onto the railings or each other for support, those that failed to find a handhold being flung to the floor. Sidra, accustomed to maintaining her footing in combat or on rough terrain, wavered but stayed upright.

And then she heard it.

A reverberating roar, like that of a roving rahi herd or a raging waterfall, distant but growing nearer. She twisted towards the sound, her dread growing as she realised she was turning towards the open ocean. Not a waterfall… a tsunami.

A wall of water half the height of the tower she stood atop crashed down upon the shore, shredding the sands and shattering the rocks. Before she could so much as blink or cry out, Sidra was falling amidst screaming Matoran, as the teetering tower was toppled by the torrent…

 

OOC: Part 1 of 5 of Sidra's Far Shore adventure. 

Edited by Nato the Traveler
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IC: Sorilax - Aspect of Light and Silence

Location - Far Shore

 

Sorilax stood in a snowbank, fierce wind howling through a large, broken window with thick glass. What remained of the window flickering occasionally, colors shifting from deep, light, to aqua blue. The shifting never stopped, and actually it morphed shapes as well, sometimes it was round, sometimes it was a square, sometimes the window was just a glass wall.

As Sorilax looked around, he realized the whole room he was in was flickering, colors jumping from shades of white to gray to dark gray and then back to whites. The room remained mostly the same shape, with small variations. The only things that remained the same were the blinding white light coming through the broken window and the piles of stark white snow piles piled on chairs, sofas, a far desk, and the floor.

He couldn’t remember how he had gotten here, nor how long he had been standing there. He was covered in snow that fell off in piles as he looked around the room. He was holding his knives, but there was no sign of the Far Shore portal. There were no signs of snow. In fact, there were no footprints in the snow, so no one had been here for awhile.

Sorilax sheathed his knives, reaching for a new scroll to write his thoughts down. His hand grabbed empty space and he was slowly filled with shock. His scrolls! He grabbed at his shoulders. His backpack straps weren’t there. His backpack too! It was just… gone.

He reached for his head, the flower crown and shadow lizard were missing too. He pulled his feet from the hardened snow collected and frozen around him and crunched through the snow as he walked around the room. After a thorough search, he concluded his things were gone. He hoped not forever.

The snow sparkled and shimmered as he moved, its outer layer frozen over. It was like a bed of diamonds had been laid out at his feet, filling him with wonder and joy as he watched how the light reflected. He wondered how cold it was, as he had no way to tell on his own unless he left his armor, which didn’t seem like a smart idea.

Sorilax went to the broken window, optics trying their best to adjust. There were vague shapes, all vertical, gleaming and glistening brightly, reflecting even more light. He went to Absorb some to refill his reserves, when he realized he was full of elemental energy. And he wasn’t tired anymore either.

He scratched at his chin in thought. Just where was he? And where was Sala? He had never seen a room look like this before, that was for certain. He was someplace foreign and alien to him. This was no swamp, it was no desert.

Sorilax went to the long desk, wiping off the snow that had piled up. Icicles, clear and long, hung from its edges. It looked like this was some kind of work station. He was in an office, perhaps. Skakdi had things they called offices, but they were far messier than this and contained a lot more weapons. In this place there were paper clips, pens, and pads of paper. All were hopelessly frozen solid. Inked on the top corner of the topmost page of paper was a company name: Crystal Climber Technologies. It had a small, stylized Crystal Climber hanging from the side of a shear wall, with stars above it that it was reaching for.

The typeface and font of the company occasionally shifted and changed, but always read the same. The logo shifted through several older and new looking designs, but there was always a Crystal Climber and stars. For a split second there was no pad in his hand, then it reappeared. He set it down.

If the Far Shore validated universes and timelines, perhaps this place was constantly shifting between a great many varying timelines, where things were similar enough to remain mostly consistent. In that way, he was exploring multiple timelines that were so similar to almost be the same, and potentially exploring them all at once. The thought was incredible, and his doubts of what Nuju had said started to fade.

Sorilax crossed his arms and frowned, his long arms folded around himself making him look like a giant metal pretzel. Actually, if the Far Shore was infinite, why was he just seeing one place instead of being transported to multiple places every couple seconds? Nothing should ever remain recognizable. He feared that he had entered a small slice of a greater whole. One that was far more solid and limiting than Nuju had made it out to sound. He could only hope it was the same place Sala had been sent.

Speaking of the Matoran, he wouldn’t find Sala standing here. His inner scholar itched to figure out some way to write down his thoughts, but perhaps his missing scrolls were a good thing. He needed to find Sala as fast as possible. And stay focused doing it. Sorilax went to a door near the long desk and turned the knob. It wouldn’t budge, forcing him to throw his back into it. Ice cracked and the door then swung free, revealing a long hallway lit by dark blue lights. No, light blue. No, white. No, they, well, they constantly changed.

Sorilax noted the same company name and logo on the wall. It seemed he was in their building. With the absence of snow, frost covered everything. A layer of ice coating both walls, the frost on the floor being rough and crunching beneath his footfalls.

He ignored the many doors that he passed after the first few revealed only small office rooms with blinding windows. He walked down the hallway for over half an hour at least, though he wasn’t that good at keeping track of time, so it could have been any amount really. But eventually, the end soon came into sight. At the end of the hall, a more secure looking door made of metal stood half open, ice freezing it in place as if it had exploded from one point, like someone had chucked an Ice grenade. The door was torn through, the metal being warped where it wasn’t shredded. Sorilax used the strength of his vessel to break off a few pieces of the ice that encapsulated the door, allowing him to walk past.

He was greeted with a sight that was beyond his comprehension. There was a massive, gaping hole in the building he was in. It was a circular hole, and started several stories above the floor he was on and traveled several stories below him. A raging and cruel wind threatened to pull him from where he stood and he was forced to grab the edge of where the building had been broken off.

There was snow everywhere in large, heaping piles. Giant, multi-story sized icicles hung from the hole in the building, threatening to fall on anyone who tried to make a bridge across the gap. With his current angle, he was actually able to see outside. He couldn’t see much, but enough to get a small understanding of his immediate surroundings, and it filled him with awe. 

There was ice and snow as far as he could see. He was in a building that rose so high off the ground that he couldn’t actually see its bottom. There were massive skyscrapers all around, each one frozen and in a state of partial destruction. Many bridges crossed between the impossibly tall buildings, each one with a small mountain of snow covering them and more icicles than he could count hanging from them. Several of the skyscrapers were completely encapsulated in ice. Parts of the landscape were so cold they were a rich light blue.

Everything reflected white light, making it hard to see any real details. He also had no sense of the size of the buildings nor how close or far they were from him. He wasn’t sure, but he suspected the buildings were miles wide, with massive, almost normal skyscrapers acting as bridges between them. He couldn’t tell for sure though, and so his mind was left to wander as it was filled with wonder.

Something flitted at the corner of his vision. He turned to look, but saw only shadows on the other side of the circular hole through the building. Well, he needed to keep moving. Gripping the edge of the destroyed floor, Sorilax lowered himself down one level. This level had higher ceilings than the other floors and was made of non-painted metal that shifted from freshly polished to dull and back to polished. One of the variations was brick painted white. Very scientific-y machines were strewn about, all completely destroyed. He had no way to know what purpose they might have once had.

A large door with many locks was open before him. He exited it, looking back above the doorway. Letters above the door read: Project Frostelus.

The Rahi? It was rare on Zakaz. Perhaps it wasn’t rare here. Or, well... Sorilax listened to the howling wind of frozen intent. Maybe it hadn’t been rare before this building was abandoned. Sorilax walked down a hallway much like the one from the floor above, but this time the doors opened to offices with windows with slightly tinted glass, their views showing off he was walking between absolutely massive skyscrapers.

At the end of the hallway/bridge, Sorilax found himself in a lounge area instead of a reception room, not that he actually knew what either of those two things were. There was a small kitchen off to one side, with tables and chairs set up around the room. Some of the chairs were knocked over and another spiky ball of ice punctured through a table in the center of the room. As he looked, the knocked over chairs and destroyed table kept changing positions. Several of the variations had fewer chairs, even.

A poster hung on one of the walls. It read: Why let Ko-Toa have all the fun? Talk to your manager and see if you’re ready for ABZIS! On the poster was a picture of a happy Matoran pointing his finger at a dancing icicle.

Sorilax frowned. What was abzis? Abzis? ABZIS? Well, however its proper spelling, he wondered what it meant or stood for. Sorilax looked back at the constantly shifting lounge room. And what had caused the destruction he had seen so far?

The sound of ice cracking suddenly took him from his thoughts as it came from another room. Moving to the door he thought he had heard the noise coming from, his power to move silently activated, stopping his footsteps from making noise on the frost covered ground. He extended a field of Silence around the door as he worked it open, trying to break free the layer of ice covering both sides.

Beyond was a room filled with partitioned workstations. They shifted between varying shades of grey, when they were there at all. One version had the whole place destroyed, like a wind storm had come through.

Sorilax walked through the desks, head turning to and fro. Another poster hung from one of the workstation partitions. This one read: Colder than Ice. Together we shall fall below zero! It showed a Matoran in a lab coat holding a clipboard next to a vat of viscous fluid with an icicle inside.

He frowned. This was horrible. He wasn’t getting anyplace. Sala could be anywhere, or anywhen. How was he suppo- Another shadow flitted by out of the corner of his vision. His head swiveled to try and find it. A sudden gust of wind causing him to stumble.

Wait, wind? He didn’t see any holes to outs- A shadow of a Toa came into view, stretching along the floor as if lit from a low angle. Sorilax’s optics followed the legs to find where the Toa was standing and stopped in place. There was nothing there. The shadow merely stopped where it should have connected to the object casting it.

What? Great jumping Mahi! Was he missing something? Surely it couldn’t- The shadow sprung forward, still acting as a normal shadow as it warped and shifted over desks and short partitions. It swiped at Sorilax’s feet and actually made contact, knocking him down.

Shock and confusion filled Sorilax. Normally his Silence kept him safe from most dangers noticing him. How had it spotted him as just a shadow? He moved to stand, arms bracing to push himself up and the shadowling knocked away his hands, forcing him prone again. Sorilax used his element, causing his body to shine from top to bottom. He then got to his feet. The shadowling was still there, now darker than black in the glow of his element, as if it were a void no light could defeat. Sorilax’s mind immediately went to the doorway he had encountered below Kini-Nui. Had its power followed him here?

Sorilax raised a hand and tried to blast the shadowling with light. The blast was weak and held no actual damaging power except to extinguish shadows. He would need to work on actual attacks with his new element. But that didn’t even seem to matter, a field of crackling energy surrounded the shadow thing, forming an impenetrable barrier. Sorilax stopped the attack. The field remained around the shadowling, which remained immoble.

He raised a hand to shine more Light when suddenly wind tried to pick him up again, this time succeeding and throwing him into a cubicle. Frozen pens and paper went everywhere in one of the variations, most of the others keeping the office supplies in their proper place and stopping Sorilax’s slide across the floor.

The room changed to the version where everything was windswept to the far corners of the large room and Sorilax saw three more shadowlings had arrived. All the shadows were of various species. Then the room shifted back to its normal variations and he lost sight of them.

He had to get out of here. He was outnumbered and at a disadvantage. He needed to somehow study them from afar to find their weaknesses. He wasn’t any good at figuring stuff out quickly. Especially when it came to battles. It was much easier to fight Rahi when he already knew everything about their species.

A shadow flitted around the corner of his vision. He needed to leave now!

Sorilax stumbled to his feet, body still glowing. The void touch of a shadowling tried to trip him up, but with Light emanating from him, its grasp was weakened, though still far stronger than he had hoped it would be. Sorilax opened the door at the end of the room and a fierce gale came from the opened doorway, trying to stop his progress.

He quickly created hardlight footholds for himself, trying to strain his body to move from one foothold to the next, the shadowlings attempting to grab at his feet as they touched the ground. Sorilax in response began randomly shooting blasts of damaging Light behind himself. He doubted he destroyed anything, as he heard their defensive fields crackling and it wasn’t like he was suddenly better at Light attacks, but just one more step and he would be free, the wind continuing to scrape against and away the paint on his vessel.

Then he was through the door. It easily closed behind him, the wind gone as he passed through the doorway. Sorilax then fled, rushing through hallways, rooms, and courtyards. He passed wide open forays and banquet halls. He moved through maintenance tunnels and locker rooms. As he ran, he realized this whole building was a city unto itself, with mall areas for stores to sell their wares and parks to try to replicate the outdoors. But the ever present name of Crystal Climber Technologies was stamped on everything. Every wall, every napkin, and every bauble held the brand.

And where there wasn’t snow, there was ice. Often a combination of the two. This whole place was frozen over and left partially destroyed. He saw no evidence of recent activity of any kind. But he also had no way to tell how long this building had been abandoned. Not to mention he had no idea what most of the stuff he was looking at was. Like there, he just passed a jug with frozen water in it and paper cups next to it. What was that thing? What could its purpose be? He wished he had years to spend here studying this culture that had apparently passed on.

Though his body did not tire, his mind grew tired of all the running, so he finally came to a halt, checking if the shadowlings followed him still. After a half hour of waiting, which he thought was only a couple minutes, Sorilax looked around where he was. It was the waiting room of a bank, though he had no idea what that meant. The name had been on a sign out front. The room was clad in blacks, gold, and had deep blue highlights. There was a long, dark wooden desk thing with many partitions and glass to almost form a wall. There was a name printed or painted onto it. The “bank’s” name changed as he looked at it, but the words below the name stayed the same: A subsidiary of Crystal Climber Technologies.

The beautiful, if frozen over tiles of the floor looked like a kaleidoscope as they switched through variations. Against the far wall behind the long desk thing, in one of the versions, was a vault door, open and hungry, and Sorilax didn’t much like how close it looked to his own doorway of void. Still, that design was one of many. And he was potentially several universes away from that door. Though in his soul, he knew his Taboos still clung to him, so so too could the doorway find him, even here, as it was tied to the source of power behind taboos, just as he was. And with his Taboos still with him, it meant that doorway could be lurking around any corner.

Sorilax decided to keep his movements silent, but with how his body moved as his feet crushed the frost beneath them, he could almost still hear it breaking. He spotted the vault door, several feet thick with a small avalanche of ice spilling out like a wave frozen in time from where it opened.

He carefully climbed the ice, creating hardlight handholds for himself as he went. At least one aspect of his new element had easily translated from his last. The inside of the vault had many small boxes on either side. Most were ripped from the walls, widgets laying everywhere. Sometimes they had documents inside. Sometimes jewels. But what really caught his attention was the second, larger vault door. It was crumpled and scattered in large chunks around the room. Based on one fairly intact piece, it had been over two feet thick when whole.

Sorilax picked his way around the rubble, intrigued at what might have caused this place to have something doubly secured. His question was answered in the form of rows of boxes, larger than the last room, but not by much. They had displays on the front, and colored lights. The whole room seemed to be humming. The information on the displays kept shifting and couldn’t be deciphered, so instead he grabbed a handle and slid it open.

Mist poured from the drawer as it opened with a pneumatic hiss. Nestled inside was a still beating Heartlight, hooked up to some sort of power system. The still falling mist was lit from the soft glow of the Heartlight. Sorilax tried to count the number of boxes in the room. There were too many to even guess properly. Perhaps several hundred.

Touching the Heartlight before him, Sorilax frowned. Such a horrible use of Life. What had happened in this place? Or, perhaps “places” was the better term. He was seeing several timelines as he looked around the room, the boxes mostly staying the same design, though in one variation they were hexagons.

In the back, large barrels were stacked tightly together of a material he couldn’t discern. Sorilax went over to them, they had the Crystal Climber Technologies logo on them, along with a different symbol below it. It kept changing, but the text below it only changed typeface: WARNING: TOXIC MATERIALS.

It looked like at least four or five barrels were missing, and one was open and knocked over. Sorilax leaned down to inspect it, his Taboo knowledge recognizing the “toxic” substance. It was energized protodermis, and pure at that.

Conjuring a hardlight hand to stroke his chin, Sorilax pondered his next move. Was now the time to create his Rahkshi? He thought of how the shadowlings had flitted about so swiftly, knocking him around and defending themselves easily. He couldn’t conjure his own Light in a way that could hurt them. Yes, he supposed it was time. Perhaps some Rahkshi would be more suited for combat than he was. Then he could easily find Sala and leave this place.

Sorilax moved to grab some Heartlights, then stopped. Actually, he required living bodies to make Rahkshi, he couldn’t-

Sorilax paused. Very concerned. As if by his mental command, dead Matoran lay scattered around the room, hands still clutching money and valuables. Their elements constantly shifted as they lay still. It looked like something had quickly slain all of them before leaving.

He wasn’t sure how to feel about the sudden change. Surprised, sure. Convenient, yes. But also very concerning. What else might just manifest if he thought of it? What else might be lurking in the gaps between the timelines?

Sorilax cautiously grabbed one of the bodies. It ragdolled, thankfully. There was no parasite controlling it even in death. He felt sadness staring into the lifeless optics of the Matoran, concern for Sala rising. But really he was sad that he hadn’t been able to share in this Matoran’s life. To help them live to their fullest and accomplish their purpose.

All of the dead Matoran’s Heartlights were ripped out. Sorilax also noticed they had no shadows, even when he moved them. Odd. Sorilax looked at them. Such a horrible thing to have happened. It reminded him of the ravaging the Skakdi of Zakaz and the brutality they meted out to most forms of life.

Sorilax crouched, inspecting the first body he had grabbed. Maybe they hadn’t popped into existence because of himself. They were all dead, and he needed living bodies. Sorilax reached out to his Rahkshi Taboo, testing if the body before him was a worthy ingredient. Sorilax’s mouth fell open. The answer was a yes. Somehow he could feel a small bit of life in them. He wasn’t sure what was going on. They were soulless, yet still technically alive. It was exactly what he wanted. Quite suspicious, actually. He pondered the implications.

He lowered his head in respect to these fallen and spent a minute allowing himself to mourn their deaths, which may or may not have been caused by him. Or not deaths exactly, soullessness? However, their use was not over. Life, in a twisted way, was still in them. Sorilax leaned in close… and breathed.

A small bit of his antidermis exited the slot that opened up in the back of his mouth (Thank you, Cravious) and settled upon the body, infusing itself into it. Sorilax felt the Rahkshi Taboo tug at his mind, letting him know the body was ready. He stepped forward to the barrels, feeling the Taboo swirl around him, Shadow filling him just as it used to, though this time through Taboo only.

Sorilax gently, and carefully, lowered the Matoran into an open and upright barrel. The energized protodermis was still, but through his connection to the body and the Taboo, he could feel the change taking place. Shadows swirled around, but a small bit of his Light was taken too, mixing and changing the result of the Taboo. As this happened, he felt a prompt for a power. He chose Fear, hoping to scare away the Shadowlings.

There was a moving of the Taboo behind the scenes, power running about behind the thin veil of many timelines. Sorilax felt like it could almost see it, the power was so close to him in this place, so unfiltered. It reminded Sorilax of the doorway that had almost killed him. Then the activity stopped, the ritual was complete.

The EP was gone, consumed by the Taboo, which was unexpected, but good to know. The Matoran’s body was gone, replaced by a hulking and lanky monstrosity. The Rahkshi was taller than he was, all spines and jagged edges. It looked fierce, even as just a hunk of armor. Unfortunately, whether because of this place, or perhaps the body used to create it, the Rahkshi itself constantly changed colors. And powers, too. Sorilax could feel them changing with the colors.

Still, power changing protectors were better than no protectors. Sorilax opened more barrels with hardlight hands, repeating the Taboo process two more times to reach his limit of Rahkshi. Then he grabbed three Heartlights, infusing them with his essence and using the EP to create three Kraata. It was weird to see them wriggle and move around on their own. He could sense their primitive minds, how they weren’t simply mindless like he had hypothesized could be the case.

They took shifted color and tone, powers shifting through his forty two variations. He placed them in his Rahkshi armor, watching in awe as they seemingly came to life. His creations scanned the room, getting their bearings, then looked to their creator.

Sorilax was very proud in that moment. He had created Life. It might have been off the back of other Life, but he had still done it. He was growing ever closer to achieving his Grand Wish.

One of his Rahkshi accidently knocked over one of the still sealed EP barrels. Where the barrel had been sitting Sorilax spotted a hatch, unlocked, but still closed. Sorilax went over to it. It was unmarked and flush with the floor. He turned the handle and lifted it, revealing a small maintenance corridor. Why would there be a back door to a vault inside of another vault?

Sorilax looked at the dead Matoran, barrels of energized protodermis, and the rows upon rows of still beating Heartlights. Just what exactly had happened here? What had gone down in this world?

Well, there was only one way to find out. Sorilax commanded his Rahkshi to be wary of the shadowlings and to go get bearings for where they might find some place important that Sala might be. They raced off, full of a vigor and energy Sorilax didn’t think he had ever felt. Not that he remembered being young, for some reason.

Before he investigated where this service tunnel went, he decided to possess one of the Rahkshi, his own body slumping to the ground as his true self jumped to inhabit the portion of antidermis he had breathed into the Rahkshi. It was odd, feeling the powers of the Rahkshi and Kraata, even odder how they constantly shifted. And his body. He had gotten used to his form and his elongated arms. Now his legs were elongated and his arms were actually rather short.

Still, this form held power and vigor, and the Shadows clung to it. He saw the other two Rahkshi break off to go in separate directions. This body was built for combat and speed and so he used it, with the body almost taking over in a way as he was in a way mentally detached. Almost as if he was watching himself from within the body. He jumped and leapt as he ran like he hadn’t ever before. His decisions were quick and instinctual. It was like being in a whole new body with a brand new mind built to be swift.

Oh yeah, that was exactly what it was like.

The minutes quickly flew by, the landscape a shifting blur of frozen and snow filled corridors, rooms, and open living areas. He ducked through alleyways and down small, mock streets. He passed through gardens and even a large park. He went through multistory shops and archways built to mimic glaciers. All of them shifted in art styles as he passed by, some simplistic, some grand, but all of them themed to ice in some way. And he saw even more of those ABZIS posters. He was actually getting used to how everything shifted through differing timelines about every second. It was really interesting to see how things varied between worlds.

He must have been near an edge before and was now headed in a different direction, because he saw no windows nor openings, just more and more buildings. This skyscraper truly was massive, the halls winding and nonsensical to him, but probably serving some larger purpose for a building of such magnitude.

Backtracking after heading for several minutes into a dead end pathway, a shadow flickered behind a pillar in the corner of his optics. Sorilax caught the quick, fleeting motion and ducked into a nearby doorway. Ice was piled on the ground as if it were a snow bank, keeping the door from being able to be opened. One of the door variations was round, which momentarily distracted him. Sorilax tried to use his Rahkshi powers to break the blockage.

His arm stretched to touch the ice, became momentarily intangible, then grew some weeds.

That… was useless. It did indeed seem he would have to rely upon his Light powers. A shadowling came into view down the small pathway he was on, form alighting on some dead and frozen bushes. He called upon his Light, piling it together, trying to build up the intensity. Then he shot it at the ice pile next to him.

The shot harmlessly passed through the ice, merely illuminating it. Sorilax sighed at himself, disappointed, then was swept from the doorway by a gust of wind, dragged to the middle of the path, the Kraata part of him feeling the sudden inertia and spinning his brain.

He turned to face the shadowling best he could. There were several of them, all different species, not lit by any light source in the room. They advanced in silence, slipping and sliding over every surface. Sorilax caused his body to shine, holding out his Rahkshi staff as if he could actually use it with any sort of skill.

The shadowlings advanced all at once and Sorilax tried to increase his Light in brightness. Once more they still shone a true black, eating up the Light, barely hindered by it. And then they were through his meager barrier. Their shadow bodies mingled with the shadow buffer his Rahkshi had and suddenly he felt pain. Sharp and intense. He felt like he was dying, or maybe he was just feeling pain for the first time. It was horrible, awful. Gut wrenching. Everything he hoped to never feel ever again.

Sorilax sat up, the true him, back in the vault. What had happened? He mentally reached out to his creations, noting there were now only two. Sorrow filled him. Had he created only for his creations to be killed immediately. Was this truly their Destiny? Or was he himself at fault.

Before he could even possess the second one to see how it was doing, it died as well, disappearing from his mind. No! Sorilax felt his gaseous body grow heavy in guilt and regret. He had failed his creations. He sat there for a few moments, grieving.

Had he done the wrong thing in creating them? Was he too filled with knowledge to recognize his folly?

Then he came to himself. Life was created and Life was destroyed. He knew this. He had studied it for years. Whether the destruction of Life was bad, he still wasn’t sure, but it happened nonetheless. And it happened every day. He had no need to change his opinions on the matter due to emotions in the moment. Life lived and died. So was Life. Sorilax focused on his last Rahkshi, possessing it.

Sorilax stood in a gigantic tunnel, large icicles hanging from the ceiling, most larger than himself. The tunnel receded into black behind him. But in front of him, a wall of pure white blocked his way. He stepped closer. No, not a wall, but light. Great heaps of snow lay at the exit of the tunnel. He used his long legs and wide feet to more easily traverse it. A terrible howling wind sounded like it threatened to rip apart the exit of the tunnel as it rose above him and to the sides at least a hundred feet all around.

Hand to his optics to help them adjust to the overpowering light, he stepped outside.

Once more he had to brace against the grating and chilling wind. But what he was able to discern was worth it. A vast web of massive skyscrapers filled the horizon. Tall monuments of ice, snow, and destruction. A couple were leaning over onto other ones, ice as if it were fire flaring up where the two buildings met. He still couldn’t see below. The ground was lost to mist, or a haze, almost as if there was ground at all. And the sky, it was a bright ice blue, close to white, though no clouds could be seen.

Sorilax squinted as the light of a white sun reflected off almost every surface, everything dazzling and threatening to blind him. He turned his head, trying to see anything important. And then a particularly dark object caught his attention. It was a few buildings away. Perhaps several days' walk. It rose from the top of one of the massive buildings, black with no variance, as if no light could touch it and it was an inkstain dropped atop the skyscraper. It looked to be a giant telescope, a piece of void peering into the bright sky.

He wasn’t sure if Sala would head towards something like that, but it was the only thing that he could see that was different on the horizon, not that he could see much with how bright it was. It was the best place to look for his friend. Sala and he had talked about the stars before, so maybe. Now he just needed to-

A shadow crept up his leg, merging with the shadow buffer around the Rahkshi. It used the buffer to crush the Rahkshi from all angles, and then Sorilax was back in his real body. Emotions swept over him. Loss, regret, defeat. He didn’t like how they were messing with his mind. No longer being detached from emotions came with its own set of problems, it seemed.

He decided to take the risk and center himself, meditating.

As he let his mind calm, he pondered his emotions. About what had caused them and what he might do about both his emotions and his situation. He had created imitations of Life. Warped Life. He had sent them to their deaths for information.

Warped Life. He was not the Aspect of warped Life. He was the Aspect of true Life. His Destiny lay not in petty tricks. He was no imitator, no cheap magician or illusionist. He was going to achieve his Grand Wish. He was going to be Life itself.

But what did that mean for him here?

As he mulled things over, an idea filled his mind. Perhaps he should create Life of his own.

Sorilax stood, rushing to the Heartlights. He breathed into one, dipping it in EP. A freshly made Kraata soon crawled around his hands. He calmed his mind and closed his optics, entering his Taboo mindscape of the crushing sea of Taboos. He swam about the frigid, void waters of the power behind Taboos, grabbing the tendrils of Kraata Creation. The full and complete knowledge of the Taboo filled him and he tried to glean some type of insight into the nuances that were hidden around the edges. He knew Taboos could be tweaked, that nothing was set in stone. But unfortunately, nothing noteworthy was forthcoming in his brief search.

That made sense, he hadn’t actually experimented on anything yet, so he didn’t have much knowledge to work with. He grabbed the Kraata in both hands, pouring the power behind Taboos into it. The Kraata became wrapped in shadow as he pulled it asunder with a quick motion, one becoming two.

As the shadow dissipated, Sorilax’s excitement at his idea faded. He had thought to try to duplicate a Kraata, to truly make life. Instead in his hands were two shriveled, and very dead, Kraata. But he had felt the way the power behind Taboos had accepted his offer. It was willing to let him bend it to his will, to twist into something not quite like before. Or so he hoped. In a way it also felt like it was guiding him, and everything he learned was just a reveal of something he had already known but forgotten. Not everything with Taboos worked, but they were far more fluid than a casual observer might realize.

Nevertheless, a duplicate had been made, but something had gone horribly wrong. He could feel the Kraata Creation Taboo respond to the action, but he wasn’t just sure how exactly. Perhaps the Kraata didn’t have the energy to sustain itself during the process. Maybe if he tried it on someone he had Desecrated?

A hardlight hand scratched at his chin. Yes, that might just do it. He wished he had someone to Desecrate right here and now. Probably a Toa of Ice considering the world in which he now resided. Body insulated against the freezing cold. Main color a pure white. Tall and strong, yet quiet like the snow. Sorilax could almost see the Toa standing before him; he imagined the being so well.

The Toa of Ice spoke in a voice like a bank of snow softly falling into a crisp mountain stream, “Creator?

 

OOC: Sorilax Far Shore Adventure Part 1

Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4

Edited by Kal the Guardian
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-----------------------------

--------- “BRUH” -Makuta, probably ---------

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IC: Reliable Narrator | Relic Fields

Dusk brought a purple and periwinkle hue to the icy sides of the knowledge towers surrounding Niidak. In her time exploring she’d found a few trinkets here and there -- a miru, several ingots of protodermis, an empty knowledge crystal, and a kanoka disk launcher with a winged flame motif extending along its sides -- during her scavenging, perhaps enough to warrant keeping the new ride. The hoverbike puttered along a few inches above the ground, its engine whining in protestestation whenever she added more weight for it to transport. However, a new piece of the landscape had caught her eye.

It was a sort of statue. Niidak found it in an abandoned courtyard. The courtyard, shaped like a large slice of Papa Podu’s pizza in the late Metru-Nui, had steps running along the longer straight sides to landings leading into interconnected knowledge towers. However, in the corner of their junction was the statue of a rahi with a matoran’s maskless face. Strangely, it was so beautifully carved it seemed almost a shame the mask was missing. The eyes of the statue were closed, as if the strange being was deep in sleep. It had wings brushing off its back, and six legs. Although the statue rose nearly as tall as Niidak herself, it was carved to look as if seated on the lip of its plinth in repose. There was a plaque too. It read: 

“I, Hafu, dedicate this statue to my friends who say I sleep too much. For those who dream the deepest see the clearest.”

OOC: @Eyruwill be taking over from here, @Daniel the Finlander

 

IC: Administrator  | Elemental Temple Ruins of Stone

“Heretic aspects continue to walk through as if this was a chute station. I am just about up to  -- hello vortixx,” the Administrator said pleasantly. “I believe there is no further golden light here, as you call it, but I do feel the increased foot traffic has brought a significant pest infestation into these halls. I do my best to drive them out, but the hoto bugs ride in on some of the supplicants and take a liking to the drier corners of this place. There is no damage here, however, my main servers have recently suffered a data breach. I have come to discover there were a few backdoors left open I was not aware of possessing. By no means am I compromised. I function with full integrity. As long as 73% is considered full, that is. Reconnecting all the elemental temples and suvas in my network would significantly increase my overall efficiency and stability. I am currently unable to locate the suva of earth or the suva of water.”

OOC: @Toru Nui, @Harvali

 

IC: Reliable Narrator | Ruins of Water

Mahrika’s attempt left the nubs on the colored rings still aligning with the doors where statues showed the respective colors. While she spun some rings more than others, clockwise or counterclockwise didn’t seem to make a difference. She and Vokarda took a moment to think:

  • She knew the colored rings matched the colored statues in some way.
  • She knew a certain number was associated with each statue.
  • She knew only one door faced a true cardinal direction, due North.

She felt close, far closer than she’d felt in the Elemental Ruins of Water. It felt like real progress -- they’d figure this out, she was sure of it.

OOC:

@Burnmad, @Harvali

 

IC: Nuju | Kini-Nui

“Wow,” Nuju said after both Sidra Nuva and Ostrox disappeared through the rippling rift into the Far Shore on strange adventures all their own. He sat for a little bit on his own, feeling the wind off the lake and smelling the foods cooked in the village of Kini-Koro. A wandering gaze alighted on the restrained and sleeping Malhukuraia. To himself Nuju admitted; “I’ve really gotta stop lying to them.”

 

IC: Reliable Narrator? | Metru-Koro

Aboard a League airship in the abandoned ruins of Metru-Koro, a village on land stolen from the Mesi who lived below and the warskaks who lived above -- who also stole it from a group of matoran about 10,000 years or so ago, or maybe 100,000 years it’s hard to tell when you’re a lizard -- rested a very fat lizard.

Yes. 

Hello.

Camera to the left. No the other left and behind the -- come on Larry they don’t have all day. Okay just try it again. No, not all over, just from when you pan towards the window.

Alright, and action.

It’s hard to tell when you’re a lizard -- rested a very fat lizard.

Yeah, can we just stop there? I’m not feeling that line. Who wrote that line Larry, an angsty scriptwriter who watched too much Arrested Development in one sitting? Oh it was that Unreliable Narrator? Ugh. Unbelievable is more like it. Okay Larry we’re going off book -- get the camera focused on me, and -- oh wait hold on that’s a bug I gotta…

 

IC: Reliable Narrator | Metru-Koro

For far longer than Triage would like the airship was silent. His patient didn’t move. His clinical gaze swept over her, noting the scars around the hands and arms that indicated a conflict-oriented lifestyle. The sharp lines and sweeping curves of the faxon hid most of the toa’s face, but what little he could see Triage felt pity for -- at some point she’d been badly burned. He’d definitely seen his share of bloodshed and death in the war. He’d seen a successfully healed patient still die in the dirt. Whether or not the medic could accept the limits of his own abilities was between him and the bottle in his bag, however.

The toa of water covered in her own blood gave a raspy cough, eyes flickering open. She tried to rise up, but moved too fast and instead fell back and hit her head on the floor of the airship. Her hands clenched, her feet moved as if to lash out towards the nearest being, and then she calmed herself. Slowly she rolled onto one side and pushed herself up until she was somewhat seated upright. 

“Hey doc,” Tuyet said as she stared at Triage with her piercing eyes. “I think I love you.”

OOC: @Tarn, @Nato the Traveler, @BULiK, and I think @Onaku congrats on keeping her alive. Drat real life and my inability to post more quickly. Time was on your side this time. :P

Edited by Unreliable Narrator
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Happy chat.

 

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IC Drokk - Ash Barrens:

After some 30 minutes, Drokk sighed and relented to the inevitable conclusion. She was going to have to make a boat of some kind to get across to the tower. She could not make a bridge large enough to cross on foot, she was not skilled enough to simply float over on a bit of iron, and despite her efforts, the Sea had no powers of its own to seal away to ease passage.

She grunted and turned away from the coast, concentrating. she had seen many boats in her life, had come to this place on one, many, many years ago, and had been on and around her fair share of the craft. Surely, she could make one that was seaworthy enough to make this short crossing?

with a snort of air, she smacked the sand, and iron flowed from her gauntlets, slowly but surely shaping itself as if alive into a a crude dingy. A single beam made up it's keel, curving up at both ends, a rim of metal, hollow to keep the weight down connected the top of the curved portions of the beams. And at last, the beam warped and stretched, forming into a thin sheet on each side to complete the makeshift craft. Drokk exhaled, and she raised her hand, and then struck the earth once more to form an oar. Truth told, she wished she'd been a Bo-Skakdi. Wood was easier to make a boat with. But she was not, and there was no point dwelling on things that could never be.

With much fuss and noises from various parts of her body, Drokk managed to push her tiny vessel into the water. It rode high in the water, unleaden with her weight, the waves nearly throwing it back onto the beach. Drokk grit her teeth, careful so as to not damage the carvings, and pushed one final time, before stepping into her boat. It sank lower in the water, but to her satisfaction, did not capsize or slip under the level of the water. She raised her oar, and began to paddle the dingy toward the tower....

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                                                                                           The Unofficial Guide to TBRPG Combat!

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