The Archive > Blades of the Forgotten Ones (Raurie)

Jakari

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Samantha:
~London.~
She blinked.
~The Citadel. It's in London. That's where we should be.~
"The Citadel?"
~It's the place where everyone will be. It's in London.~
Taking a deep breath, the woman stood still, her eyes closed. She turned gently, and opened them, focused on the far horizon.
"Then that is where we shall go."
~Wait, you're not walking the whole way, are you? Come on! Planes are a thing. I've explained them to you. Let's take a plane, catch a flight, it'll be faster.~
She nods, making a slight adjustment in direction, and steps in the direction of the nearest town.
The world passes by below, beyond the window, while seated in a cushioned chair. Her thoughts are scattered by a loud crash, as the plane bucks violently. Noise and panic erupt all around, the sound of screams cut through the chaos- coming from the cabin ahead.
Leaping from her seat toward the curtain, Jakari's movement is smooth, and seems ignorant of the heavy turbulence that shakes all else. Pulling the drape aside reveals the truth- six dark shadows are attacking the passengers here- huddled cowering in their seats. In a heartbeat, the sword is in her hands- a blueish-white haze glimmers as defenses are called- an invisible barrier forms between the danger and the civilians as she exerts her will through the Blade- he works with her to protect them.
One of the shadows strikes at a nearby passenger, it's arm a weapon itself- and crashes loudly against the unseen shield. The shadow reacts with a screech- which is cut short as the longsword buries itself into the creature, which seems to shatter and melt simultaneously. The five other shadows move to intercept their enemy, stronger in number.
Duty and determination guide her, and in some short minutes the darkness is gone.
The victory is short lived however, as though the foe is vanquished, they are still going down.
Pushing open the door to the cockpit, directed by Lysandros, she finds the pilots fighting- both with the controls and with each other. Neither of them look up at her entry.
"What is going on?"
"We're crashing. Nothing's working. We're dead in the sky."
"What can I do?"
"Nothing. Brace for impact. Die, probably."
They don't even glance up for more than a moment, and the conversation is brief.
However, it does spark an idea.
~Brace for- if we can shield- No, strengthen the body- Will that work? One way to find out...~
The people are crying, wailing, shivering- others among them simply watch.
Making her way along the aisle of the aircraft, she stops every few paces to lay her hand on the floor. Everything is still as though in an earthquake, and a couple of the overhead compartments have come open, but her steps are steady and she does not falter.
A couple look up at her from their seats, and she attempts to reassure them.
"Brace yourselves- you will survive."
~You can do better than that.~
Focusing her will with his, she lays another protection mark. There's no damage to the surface, yet the symbol is clear- a glowing white sigil, with a blue tinge to the edge, that shimmers as you look at it, making it seem almost ghostly. Standing up, with more conviction this time, "I will protect us all."
This is quickly repeated along the length of the plane, bolstering it, and she steels herself against the fatigue that pulls at her, from expending so much of their strength. No sooner as she has stood from finishing the last mark, the Blade cries out in her mind- his the words are lost beneath such a thunderous crash as she has never heard- or felt before. She fights to hold her stance as the entire carriage bounces, then rumbles viciously, as it grinds along the ground, then a further crash, and the splintering of wood and snapping trees- they've hit a forest?
The shaking stops. The passengers breathe again- and allow themselves some relief- yet it is short lived.
An ominous creaking noise, the sound of metal screeching against stone- and they begin to tip slowly forward.
~It's a cliff! We're going over!~
"People- to me! NOW!" she commands, still standing at the tail of the plane. To their credit, they comply, quickly.
The room is still balanced on a knife-edge, but now they're at least weighing it the right way. Opening the rear door, it deploys a chute, and she urges the survivors out, in a rushed but orderly fashion, passengers, staff, and pilots all. Once out, she guides them away from the fallen carriage, attempting to settle them, and making sure no-one is hurt. It's not long before there are flashing lights and cars, and people in uniform everywhere.
The second air journey of the day goes somewhat smoother.
Arriving in London, the aftermath of the battle is evident. The streets harbour hurrying civilians, while rubble and wreckage lies scattered across the roads. Some attempts have been made to clear it, but more for access than anything. Everyone seems to be going in the same direction- except for the occasional dark, robe clad figures. "Sorry. Busy. The Citadel? Follow everyone else."
~Wait- this isn't it- This is the wrong way. Then where? I don't know- I'm sorry! I'm still kinda new at this. I don't know everything. Do not tell me. Guide me.~
Walking in the opposite direction to the flow of the crowd, it isn't long before they draw attention.
"You're going the wrong way- the Citadel is that way." He points, expecting her to leave.
"No. This is my path."
"But you can't- wait-" He pulls out a small device, and points it at her. ~Ah, this will help...~
"Who are you?"
"Jakari of Sensaine." she says, with the hint of a bow. "I wish to offer my assistance."
A light flickers on the tablet in his hand, and he nods. "Ah, a Wielder. You'll be wanting- yes." He gives her directions, and excuses himself. While following them, Jakari spots a map on a broken glass wall. After studying it for a few minutes, she gives a satisfied nod, and knows exactly where to go, taking a small shortcut.
Large doors opened up into an impressive hall, with many people hurrying this way and that. A busy steward sat behind the main desk, clearly working on several tasks at once. She pointed, without having looked up. "That way. Next floor. Go straight up." Jakari's nod of thanks was probably missed, but given nonetheless. Pausing at the closed doors, she pressed the arrow. They opened seconds later, and she found herself barged aside. Waiting for them to pass, she then stepped inside.
When the doors open again, they revealed another large room, similar to the one downstairs- but this one seemed to be more important. An animated woman stood at the head of the room, with a glowing screen in one arm, and issuing directions with the other. After a few moments it seemed as if she'd not be finished for a while- so rather than waiting until the end, Jakari simply stepped into the room, standing before the woman's gaze. It wasn't long til she was noticed. Finishing the next set of orders, she called her forward.
"Who are you?"
"Jakari of Sensaine. I offer my aid."
The woman raised the screen, and colours flicker for the second time. She begins to speak, but is interrupted by a bright flash of white flames, and the sudden appearance of a figure within them. They subside as quickly as they'd begun, leaving a white clad male stood in their place.
~Cayden!~
Jakari recognises the Champion of London from the video link- his battle was transmitted across the world. She offers a respectful soldier's bow, but understandably his attention is on the control officer, who gives him a sharp status update. Jakari takes note of what names, locations, and risk levels that she can, knowing Lysandros will also be listening.
"Norway is currently at highest risk. The storm is growing at an alarming rate-"
"Norway then. You. Come with me."
There is barely time to nod before his hand grabs her arm, and the control centre vanishes in a flash of white flames.
The next moment, they are stood in a field overlooking a fjord. A white comet shoots into the sky- where an enormous black storm cloud looms above. Cayden vanishes into the middle of it all, and seconds later a rippling shock wave blasts outwards- forming a flaming barrier along the edge of the stormfront.
Looking down from the fire-tipped storm in the sky, there is a burning message written at her feet.
Get to the centre. Stop the storm.
~A mission! From Cayden Hughes! The Chosen, Wielder of Caliburn, The Blade That Chooses!~
She stops listening, and instead turns to face their destination. Ahead the grass is darkened, turning black and tainted below the storm.
The wind whips up around, and throws open her cloak. Taking it as a challenge, she steps forward, towards the storm's heart.

Samantha:
They'd not been walking long when Jakari noticed something strange- black wisps of smoke were rising from the deadened grass. This wasn't that unusual in itself, as the whole area was clearly fae-tainted, but what caught her attention more, was that although the wind was blowing in strong gusts, the smoke was still rising gently, curling around casually, untouched by the storm's rage. However, before further thought could be given, a rugged figure climbed over the edge of the nearby cliff edge, and rolled away from the edge. The man looked to have been through some trouble, but seemed at a glance to be none the worse for wear. As she approached him, stood up, brushed his hair back, and dusted himself off. He didn't seem to have noticed her yet.
Introductions were made, and though he wasn't sure how he'd gotten here, Alfons did seem to think his being here was something to do with the storm. Before the conversation got any further, they found themselves standing in another place.
Beside her stood Lysandros, her Blade's spirit- and opposite them, stood Alfons, and presumably the spirit of his Blade.
~That guy's a Wielder?! Wow.~
The Blade spirits stepped away, and had a conversation of their own, that could not be heard.
Alfons could not remember how he'd gotten here, so Jakari explained how Champion Cayden had brought her here himself, and tasked her with ending the storm. He agreed to help. When the Blades had finished talking, they returned to reality.

Finding an abandoned car, Alfons drives them toward the centre of the storm. The terrain is rough, and the ride dangerous- Jakari wards them for protection. Arriving at a town directly below the storm, they are forced to abandon the car as the roads are blocked with other vehicles and debris.
Climbing ahead over the blockade, Jakari is ahead of Alfons when a rider arrives out of nowhere, upon an eight-legged horse.
~Sleipnir?! Steed of Odin!?~
Clearly another Wielder, he stops to talk with him, while Jakari looks on.
Then the great horse leaps over the wreckage, and further into the storm. Alfons catches up to her- but suddenly, something falls from the sky above them. Stepping swiftly to the side, she dodges- and flinches in realisation- the projectile was a dessicated corpse. There is barely a moment to register this before more arrive, the bodies of the townspeople falling like rain from the supernatural storm. Grabbing Alfons' shoulder, she ducks into a nearby building for shelter. Sickening thuds sound all around them, but the roof holds. It continues for a while, but then stops, as quickly as it had begun.
Thinking it now safe, Alfons steps outside to find his friend- as the horseman had gone further into the heart of the storm. He had no sooner reached the middle of the street when a large black bolt of lightning shot from the heavens and struck the unlucky man. Jakari readied to leap to his aid- only to find that he was unharmed- steam rose from his shoulders, but no further damage touched him. As she watched in disbelief, he clambered his way along the street, the great dark strikes of energy fizzing and sparking around him- but nothing actually caused him harm.

Cautious, and unwilling to test her own luck, she resigned to make her own way further in- using the ruined buildings as cover. Doorways and windows made her route easier- but the odd wall posed little challenge. It was at the last such wall that she stepped through- and almost walked into the legendary horse she had seen not long before. Sleipnir was taking refuge from the tainted lightning in an broken storeroom.
From the doorway she could see his rider, and Alfons, approaching a group of robed figures- and one who was clearly their lead- and undoubtedly Fae.
A fairly powerful one, from the look of him. She drew her Blade, but held back, and waited to see what would happen next.
The rider attacks the Fae, while Alfons takes on his assembled underlings- who quickly surround him, but he seems to handle himself well enough. Letting the other have his moment against the leader, she leaped into the air, landing gracefully beside the warrior, her Blade's sword slicing through two of them as she did so. Between the two of them it was mere moments until they had all fallen. They then went to the other warrior's aid- or would have, but a wall of stalagmites sprang out of the ground, barring their way. Mighty blows clashed on the other side, and there was a resounding clang as the rider's sword crashed down against the Fae's invisible shield. Sleipnir himself joined the battle, rearing up and pounding his hooves against the ruined road. The surface cracked and buckled as charges of white energy tore along beneath it, bolting out of the earth as it reached the enemy, the pure white lightning striking true at it's target. Bringing his weapon down again, his rider drove the Blade into the Fae's shoulder, wounding him- but as the skin broke beneath the strike, a thick oily substance gushed from the injury, lashing out itself! Alfons seized the opportunity, and called forth the Fae's guilt for all he had done. The scream tore at the air and all around them, before the mind and the very body of the enemy shattered into hundreds of tiny black fragments. In the heart of the storm, a pillar of Fae energy, dark and twisted, writhing in place. Surrounding it, the three Wielders stood fast, and as one, they struck against it. An almighty crack shot through the surface and the entire thing exploded, the two men where thrown back from the extreme force unleashed from the blast.

Jakari remained untouched, her ward protecting her. Alfons staggered, but was conscious. The same could not be said for the third. But before she had a chance to approach him, to see to his wounds, a woman appeared. Her black hair matched her attire, and she held a great scythe at her side.
With it's heart destroyed, the storm dissipated, and as the sky lightened and the wind died down, she spoke. Her congratulations were cut short as her gaze fell on the unconscious Wielder- her expression quickly turning hard. The news that he was Fae-tainted somewhat soured the victory.
Alfons argued to defend his friend, but Jakari's hand rested suspiciously on the hilt of her sword.
Deferring to the scythe-wielder's authority, she respectfully agreed that he must be dealt with.
He would be taken back to London, and Cayden himself would see to the matter personally.
With the decision made, portals were created, and they all were returned to the headquarters- albeit some rather more gracefully than others.

Once returned, Jakari made to quickly check for any updates on enemy activity, and what she could do next. She was neither tired nor injured, and knew that the fighting never rested. The map showed Norway to now be clear- or at least, no longer in a state of emergency. A place in the centre of the map, a large continent named Africa, seemed entirely lost. A smaller group of islands to the east seemed to be in a bad way. Japan. Several other areas were colour coded in varying shades of danger. It was unclear where she should go next. One of the commanders was briefing a group at one end of the room. A few individuals crossed through the room every now and then- she noticed Alfons among them. Standing alone looking out of the large windows stood another figure who she thought she might recognise. He seemed deep in thought, and as if he would not want company- but she approached gently anyway, and stood beside him, at a respectful distance.
~That's him! That is him! One of Cayden's team! I know. Are you going to talk to him? You're actually going to-~
"I wish to offer my aid." Her voice was soft, but clear.
Can't believe we're talking to-
"You are under Cayden's command, are you not?"
"Jakari, of Sensaine." She bows. "I return successfully, and have no further orders."
He nods. "Perhaps I will speak with him." He reaches out, his hand emerging from long sleeves, and places a stone in the palm of her hand.
It is clear that this is a gift- as once this is done, he then nods again, and leaves.
Examining the smooth rounded stone, and the carved rune on it's face...it was clear that it meant something...but it was not known to her.
~Hmm...looks like Kanji...wonder if...Oh my- Jakari! Look! It's them! It's ALL of THEM!~
Looking around, she could see exactly what he meant. Cayden had returned, his white coat and hair easily recognisable- beside him, the defenders of their respective cities, the other members of his Tournament team. Lysandros reeled off their names and those of their Blades, and their fighting styles, but Jakari wasn't really listening- and instead interrupted him.
~Perhaps you would like me to move closer?~ she said, already moving toward them.
Their conversation was clearly not intended to be private, but she maintained a polite distance.
Her name came up in conversation, causing further excitement from Lysandros- while she simply stood nearby, ready if required, but otherwise simply waiting. After a while, they seemed to have finished, and possibly reached some sort of decision.
Just before each of them vanished in their own specific way- by fire, water, portal or otherwise, an announcement was made.
The three from the Norway mission, plus possible others, were to meet here tomorrow, at 12 noon, for their new assignment.
"...and if you are not here, you will not go. Dismissed."

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