"Who ever heard of putting an assassin in white clothes? It's madness!" Jivven said looking down at his new pristine white get-up. The brightness almost made the Dark Elf vomit. Jivven shrugged, resigning to his fate. This is what he wanted, to be a true Child of Fire. He had no one else to blame but himself. Oh, look. The robes were loose too. Jivven began to move his hands back and forth rapidly, causing the robes to billow around him in very... visible display. Dammit, he was a shadowdancer, not a-a... Lightdancer or some other crazy nonsense. Jivven sighed again. At least they were kind enough to allow him a choice of his own weapons.
And a choice he had. There were a number of weapons to choose from. Axes, morning stars, longswords, claymores, maces, it was a variable smorgasbord. Well, it would have been if he had been a straight up warrior instead of a child of the dark. Jivven guffawed at this selection and instead made his way down to where the smaller implements were being held. Daggers, dirks, short-swords, now this was his comfort zone. He pined over the weapons, testing the weight and balance of each. The assassin picked a slender short-sword, a viciously curved dagger, and a set of throwing stars. They weren't his knives, but hey, they'd do in a pinch. He fiddled around in his robes, packing the various implements on his person until at a glance, one couldn't even tell he was armed. Probably a useless sentiment, but old habits die hard. He also snagged a couple of vials of venom and likewise packed them away.
Satisfactorily armed, Jivven made way to where he was indicated, and again, came face to face with the strange deep human Feng. His Captain it seemed. Jivven wasn't too much of a fan of authority, but he knew better at causing a scene. It was a standard necessity in such an organization, he knew this. Still it irked him. He had always been given a certain amount of freedom in his own actions, but if he needed to prove himself in order to rise in the ranks and better himself, then so be it. It was a sacrifice he would make.
He was still deep in his thoughts when they were led to the elliptical bowl of an arena. The first thing that stuck out was the lack of shadows. Well, for him it was. He doubted many others noticed shadows or the lack thereof. But him, it was second nature to scan and find the area with the least amount of light and gravitate towards it. The bowl shape of the arena did not allow for such irregular light patterns. "Shit," Jivven muttered under his breath. First his clothes, then his weapons, now the shadows? What next? His heritage as a Dark Elf? Then Jivven remembered something Captain Feng had said.
"Initiates are not permitted the prejudices, stigmas, and remnants of what they were before."
Jivven's head sagged. Right. Well, at least he still had his personality.
“Initiates: there are those among you who will form a unit beneath the honorable Aesr. Two hundred of you stand before me. Fifty of you will leave this arena alive. Attempting to escape is… inadvisable. Captain Tao will remain in the arena with you, but attacking him is also inadvisable, unless you wish for your own death. If at any time he approaches you, do as he says. Now. Begin.”
"Oooh, miss serious ass," Jivven muttered before he could catch himself. He quickly looked around to make sure Feng was out of earshot and then nervously took a step back behind the front line of Initiates. The screech of the opening gates pulled his eyes towards them, and the resulting wave of gnolls startled him. He wasn't the only one, as the Initiates around him likewise flinched or twitched as they readied their weapons. From behind the front line, Jivven watched as the gnolls rapidly descended upon them, their ravenous maws opened to rip into flesh.
Well, Jivven for one was more than happy to comply. He placed a hand on the back of the Initiate in front of him, uttered, "Sorry buddy," before shoving the poor soul into the pack of gnolls while at the same time pushing himself further into the group of Initiates. This stunt drew attention away from him and whittled down the two-hundred strong initiates. In no way was he ordered to fight the gnolls head on, nor to preserve the life of the other hopeful initiates, only survive as one of the fifty. And thus battle began for Jivven, his short sword flashing in his left hand and dagger end-over-end in his right. The battle for survival. And Just like that, the Shadowdancer in white blended seamlessly into the sea of robes.
"You heard the orders, aim for the legs if they try to charge us. If they still try to attack, put one in their arms... If they persist. Their skulls. Fire at will," An elven voice ordered three others. At the end of the sentence, three arrows blew past the elf and embedded themselves into the shins of various prisoners, toppling them. They dragged their way into the cells on either side in order to escape the biting arrows of the small team. The elf nodded approval, her smirk hidden by her raised hood.
Liliana Bloodleaf and three others had made their way into the side of the prison, opting to sweep the narrow corridors instead of participating in the battle proper. After clearing out the side hallways and corridors, she and her squad would make their way to areas with the heaviest fighting and lend support. Her small team, consisting of a human female , male dark elf tracker, and another elf were all equipped and familiar with ranged weapons, yet also carried close-range weapons should the battle close in around them.
The small hallways were perfect for such a small ranged team. The hallways offered little to no protection from a hail of arrows, and the cells off to the side, while could potentially house an inmate poised for an ambush, could be quelled rather quickly by the disciplined quickness of the team. "Right. Let's move forward. Check your corners and the cells, if it holds something other than one of ours, put an arrow in it. Careful of friendly fire, and watch each others backs. I want all of us alive by the end of this," She said, drawing back an arrow herself. They began to move forward as a unit.
This was Lily. Hardened, disciplined, and deadly efficient. A far-cry from what she was years ago. Her eyes no longer glinted with cheer, her voice was even and no longer held a tone of joy and happiness. She was ruthless and bloody, finally living up to her clan's name. Bloodleaf, the hunters of the forest. Well, the battlefield was her forest, and everyone who sought to harm the Paragon her prey, which may as well been everybody.
A twang of a bow string echoed to her right as the dark elf tracker quelled a large orc hoping to get the jump on them. Another twang followed shortly after, this time with a heavy thunk as the arrow punched through the skull. To her left, the human spoke up, "We've got a live one in here," she said. Lily let the arrow in her bow sag and peaked in the cell. The cell door was closed and lock, it's occupant, a lone orc, sitting far in the back of the cell with his knees drawn close to his chest. Lily tugged on the door, but it refused to budge. The orc looked up, shook his head no, and began to rock back and forth. "Leave him," Lily said coldly, "He's safer in there than out here. They'll send someone to retrieve him once we're done mopping up," Lily said, drawing her bowstring again and began to march forward again.
As the team approached a corner, a wave of inmates charged around it and stomped towards them. Without hesitation, a volley of four arrows launched and found their homes among the mass. A reload and another volley was launched. The initial volley was all that it took to demoralize the charge as inmates fell and grabbed their knees and shins, screaming in pain. The second volley only sealed their fate as the inmates that still stood turned tail and ran.
"Cowards..." Lily muttered, "Pursue them so they won't make trouble for the rest of us," She ordered, and the unit picked up speed.