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Ishmael Hephestus

A wandering necromancer returning home to defend his place of birth.

0 · 141 views · located in Maliusya

a character in “The Purifcation of Maliusya”, as played by Eisenhorn

Description

Name: Ishmael Hephestus

Age: 38Image

Personality: Ishmael is an easy going and laid back soul, preferring that people get along for more than five minutes before another war breaks out. He is a patient man, but has little tolerance for idiots by choice. He pities those who had no choice in their simplicity, but those who chose the path as one of ease he loathes. He is equally respectful towards those who earn his respect, and they must earn it, he never gives it willingly. He has a natural talent in remaining hidden and unnoticed, but has no fear of standing in the light and wield his power at the same time.

Vocation: Necromancer

Race: Human

Height: 5ft 9in

Weight: 157lbs

Scars/Tattoos/Piercings: Ishmael has a solitary tattoo on each palm, both snaking back up under his cloaked figure’s sleeves. The palms are ritualistic runes, snaking in patterns forming conduits back up his arms. They are inked in the fashion they are to promote the flow and focus of more potent spells, taking but a moment of thought to use.

History: Ishmael was the son of a blacksmithing man and a temple priestes in a small village within the borders of Maliusya. These ignoble roots would not bind the youth to his father’s nor mother’s wishes. Rather than using the arcane power the priestess’s lineage granted the boy for healing magic, like she desired, and ignoring his father’s want for a blacksmithing, or warrior, son, he instead turned to the abandoned mansion nearby. Inside was an old, barely recognizable as human, man. He offered the boy power over death, something that intrigued the wary teen. Having grown up with magic, and been taught some from his mother, he knew how magic properly worked. The old necromancer agreed to teach the skeptical boy what he knew, after being proven that he would not become a reckless loose cannon of necromantic power.

Ishmael was adopted by the old necromancer, and the two vanished, wandering the many places of the world, and not just Maliusya’s sole neighbor Alionya. Adopting the garb of a necromancer, and proudly displaying his powers when confronted in a hostile manner, but was easy to get along with whenever someone worked up to approach him. He wandered aimlessly, especially after his mentor in the necromantic arts died, and he inherited the man’s ritual Kris. Word reached him that Maliusya faced an assault from a new order in Alionya that had taken power and enslaved the demons. It was then that Ishmael decided to return to his homeland and prepare to defend it against these intolerant anti-magic fools.

Equipment:
Ritual Dagger – Ishmael’s inheritance from his necromancy mentor, the ebony blade bore no unusual markings or designs, the hilt having a silver chain connecting the blade to Ishmael’s wrist or belt. However, its material and the many moons of work and blood that went into forging the blade left it feeling very wrong in any living beings hand other than some necromancer’s hands. He can utilize it in both combat; stealing away fractions of another’s essence with each cut and stab to further power Ishmael’s spells, or as a wand of sorts, further focusing his combat spells into striking down enemies from a distance. The blade almost sings with dark glee whenever it cuts into or slays whoever stands within its path.

Walking Cane – A simple rod of oak topped in a beautiful emerald, the cane serves a few key purposes. The most simple was the emerald formed the hilt of a hidden blade that ran the length of the cane, and served as a blade to dispatch bandits and those that meant him or those he travelled with ill. The blade itself was of elven design and personally tempered and reinforced with magic. Second, it was an impromptu staff, and could focus his powers if he did not feel like, or had time to, reach for his ritual dagger. Lastly, it served as a perfectly fine cane, and gave him something to use as a third leg after a long day of travelling, or to deceive others into thinking him less physically capable than he really was.

So begins...

Ishmael Hephestus's Story

Setting

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Character Portrait: Ishmael Hephestus Character Portrait: Rortug Doricazaei
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A border tavern was roaring in its business as travelers looked to forget the hardship that traveling brought for at least one night, and others wanted to not worry about the war on their doorstep for a few hours more. Men, women, and other beings from all walks of life were welcome, with respect to one simple rule. Don't cause trouble. A particular soul, having spent a hard days travel reaching this point, narrowly avoiding the Crusaders on more than one occasion, was doctoring a more than potent drink. The man had bone white hair, looking like a dead man warmed over. What little could be seen under the heavy clothing and insignias along the clothing. He was an easy going man, for what his school of magic was, and the majority of the tavern let the necromancer be. One other man was talking with the white haired man, and they were in a heated, but friendly enough, debate. The man debating was a warlock, focused on the power of shadowy combat magic over the manipulation of spirits that necromancers of a certain caliber favored. The place lacked the number of wandering magi that normally would be seen here, ever since the new Reagent in Alionya took over. He was an insanely powerful being, as rumor would have it, and wanted anything magically inclined dead. That certainly curtailed the normally lively business run in the tavern that made so much off of the wanderers looking for lost knowledge about the world, or were visiting the jewel of magic in the known world. However, everyone was hushed as a battered, half dead man staggered into the tavern, rasping out a warning. "They're coming, the..."

A sword interrupted the warning, and a man in average armor forced the body aside, a man in heavy armor stepping forward, morning star and kite shield raised to wipe out this den of magic. The warlock attacked, the shadowy bolt of power simply vanishing into the shield of the leading heavily armored warrior. The warlock had enough time to step back in surprise, before the morning star collapsed the poor sod's skull in. The corpse collapsed, twitching in a manner unlike the dead should. Abruptly, the body puffed up and detonated, noxious fumes and shards of bone blasting outwards. One Crusader was dead outright, a femur sticking out of his neck. That body also detonated, though the fumes collapsed another man, no more were dead. But they were all very disorientated, except for the heavily armored man. The necromancer lowered his walking stick, the glow in the emerald top fading. The morning star wielding man chased after the necromancer as he fled out the back, storming into the night. Once the remaining survivors recovered, and killed those too stupid to flee while they were unable to chase them down, they followed after their leader. Said man was standing over a body, although he wasn't moving, morning star dripping something in the lantern light. The first of his men approached, calling his name. The leader turned, and embedded the morning star into the man's head.

This caused a massive panic in the others, who immediately tried to subdue, and then kill, the man once a second fellow was felled by the apparently insane leader. Eventually, all but one of the men were dead, the last having broken his sword off in the insane leader's neck, knocking him down. He thrashed still, spine too damaged to continue function, and the man leaned down, ripping the helmet off. The stab wound was clear in the man's forehead, and he jerked, then fell. Ishmael smiled as he flicked the blood off his ritual blade, and secreted it about his person. Turning away, he began walking, the body that had supposedly been the dead man was gone as he walked away. "Poor fools never know what they are dealing with. Clever bandits, to say the least..."




On the edge of the Vermillion Forest, a heavily fortified camp stood. A large number of Crusaders, led by their Inquisitor officers, were organizing. Impromptu walls had been erected once the forest had been secured, and there was the heavy bustle that ran about as the new force prepared for conflict again. A solitary figure towered over all the others, easily a good foot taller than the largest of his attending officers. The armor was intimidating all of its own, without the aura that the man left that spoke of an ancient power, ancient death. Ten years ago he had stood here, and the magi traitors had bested his forces. But they couldn't slay him. They had tried powerful magics, but nothing had been effective in more than angering the towering juggernaut. Said juggernaut had a title then, and had the same title now. Word had spread of their new weapon against the arcane, the holy Inquisitors who could take magic and fuel holy powers in striking down the heretics of the religious Order of Xekova. The man's name was Rortug Doricazaei, Reagent of Alionya and founder of the Inquisitor order, with paid aid from certain experts on the old arts of mage hunting. One such trained Inquisitor stepped forward, bowing towards the towering man. "My lord Reagent, the prisoners are awaiting your administrations. The personal guard are holding them, pending your judgement."

The giant man turned, armor not making a sound nor even indicating its weight as he strode in the direction the Inquisitor had indicated the prisoners were held. Said prisoners were a patrol and the farm folks that had been providing a place for the patrol to stay. His Crusaders had come across them in the Vermillion forest, and he entered the tent, guards standing straight at attention. Their youngest son had the air of untrained magic about him, and had already been escorted away for execution. The farmer was an old man, and had been crying recently. He could smell the tears that the weakling had on his face still. The half dozen patrol scouts were all battered, but nothing life threatening remained. Without a second thought, a finger claw tore open the farmer's throat, and he dropped, gagging and gurgling on his own blood. It was a slow, painful, and cruel death, and the prisoners were forced to observe every second of it. Rortug waited until the body was finally dead, and the guards dragged it away. Rortug casually lifted the first scout by his neck, enough pressure to threaten the man's life. "How ready for us is Maliusya? I ask once, or your fate is like his. Your comrades fare worse, the Inquisitors will ask questions, and they have more time to spare for this game of subterfuge than I." The scout struggled and tried to spit, only able to make a pitiful sound. Without a thought, Rortug wrenched the man's neck, shattering it, and dropped the dead scout. "Interrogate them. I want information." With that, Reagent Rortug of Alionya left the tent, Inquisitors and guards dragging the remaining scouts away.

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Character Portrait: Ishmael Hephestus Character Portrait: Rortug Doricazaei
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Ishmael had come into a healthy settlement with some sort of hubbub going on at this point. Apparently some knight had led off a couple guards to go after some thief of renown. That would be worth seeing, and he tailed along at quite the steady pace. He had a gut feeling someone was going to die, and he might as well see what their spirit knew about local happenings. Spirits were much easier to talk with on those regards than guards and other people, who wanted so much for such, most times, paltry information. Spirits and the undead were far more willing to talk and give what they knew, just for some peace and quiet. He easily supplied such things for the restless dead, a simple matter of sending them off the right direction. In this situation, he caught up to where this confrontation was occurring just in time to spot the knight arrive. He knew this should be good, considering the residency that the thief came out of. Of course, some other fellow showed up, a rather intimidating but apparently peace seeking one. At least he tried friendly diplomacy, Ishmael thought from his shadowy point of observation. Of course, the thief then slaughtered the guards, and the necromancer sighed quietly as he felt the trauma of the spirits as they were ended so prematuraly. Great, they were not happy, and as a conduit who could actually hear them, they immediately demanded his attention. A mental shrug, and listening for a bit, he smirked as the thief was lifted mid jump by the man who had first offered a peaceful alternative.

Clapping slowly, the necromancer stepped forward, spirits hushing for the time being, invisible to all but his own senses for the time being. Ishmael grinned easily at the assembled few, making an offhand comment that probably seemed less than stable. "Those guard's are not too terribly happy with their current condition, let me tell you that much." The necromancer chuckled, leaning on his walking cane, looking over the assembled group as he did so, not terribly concerned with any unpleasantness directed at him. There were fresh bodies and displeased spirits, both eager to get vengeance if something went south. He hadn't presented himself as a threat, just an offhand commenter on a rather sad situation. Last thing Maliusya needed was able bodied men getting themselves killed in a no doubt petty exchange such as this. Oh well, they would fuel spells in due time, if they remembered him if he had to call upon them.




Rortug calmly stood in the command tent of the Alionyian forces, calmly looking over force dispositions as he planned and plotted. He was waiting for the last of the siege engines to arrive, massive constructs of forged metal and wood. Rortug had a plan for the longest reaching of his siege equipment, and it involved a very special payload. They had a surplus of unburied bodies, already ripe with the disease and rot that went along with the decomposing dead. A scout patrol had been found slaughtered, something of no real consequence, although this was an annoyance. Something was still out there resisting him. They would have to be dealt with before too serious an effort was made in this invasion. The bodies were already prepared by the closest of his Order, rigged with alchemical devices that would scatter the diseased and rotting flesh. Cleaning it up, or leaving it where it lay, would start spreading diseases throughout the defenders. Several of the bodies had been prepared as an Inquisitor would have been, the magic devouring nature of the living Inquisitor still very real in the corpse, at least for now. That would help slow down arcane attempts to clean up these bodies before the disease can spread. Of course, more standard payloads of stone in the trebuchets and catapults existed, coupled with ballista for knocking out more specific targets and gates. It was something that several of his lesser subordinates were sickened by, but what could they say in the face of the Reagent of Alionya? Nothing, so he kept plotting and preparing, as the siege equipment's arrival was finalized. It wouldn't be too long before the war was reopened, in earnest.

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Character Portrait: Ishmael Hephestus Character Portrait: Rortug Doricazaei
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Ishmael inclined his head to the first one that spoke, pinning the blame on the guards for being here to die, but that they would be avenged. He reminded the spirits vengeance did not equal death, but it could be a very good substitute. The other two were not nearly as concerned with the state of being that the now dead guards were stuck with, the woman selfish about her own wants, and the nasty little thief just pointing out his general distaste for humans. Selfishness he could at least understand, even if it wasn't agreed with in this particular situation. He assumed she had been hounding this thief being for awhile, and hardly wanted anyone stepping in, let alone multiple people. Turning his gaze to meet the suspended thief, he calmly replied to what was said. "I would hardly blame them for doing their jobs either. Shame that they are dead, only weakens the area by a bit. But that is neither here nor there. So long as some sort of balance is made, the spirits will stop screaming in my ear for a couple minutes, at least." This was hardly any of Ishmael's business, but the dead clung to him like a grounding rod, for the simple reason he could actually acknowledge their existence on a workable level. The dead guards did so, and he wanted to, rather than waste time casting a few spells to burn up the energy and send them on their way through those means, went about it this way for the time being. Once that was settled, he would be on his merry own way, and leave however this was to be resolved firmly behind him.




Rortug watched as the last of the siege equipment arrived, arms crossed over the armor he wore. Crusaders were already advancing, guarding siege engines and towers, ladders and hooks also distributed amongst the forces. The key points were led by vanguards of Inquisitors. They may not be nearly as numerous as his regular soldiers, but they were a large enough force to act as a widespread leadership and general anti magic. It wasn't a perfect scheme, but it would suffice. He abstained from leading the attack, that was just a foolhardy gesture at best. No, he would be patient, as his forces would be, and deal this opening hand in their own time. There were small time encounters of Inquisitors up until now, but the real unveiling, as it were, was beginning now. Shield walls formed to counter any archer attacks, inquisitors in plain Crusader armor randomly dispersed to absorb incoming arcane artillery. They halted and began erecting fortifications once within proper siege range, all the various engines placed in protected positions and would be guarded very fiercely, to put it mildly. The engines with the longest reach started launching the diseased bodies into the castle before them, the other engines assaulting the walls themselves. It was dusk by the time this attack began, sun behind the Alionya siege forces. This would play to their advantage, and also make marking targets easier. Rather than rush the work, Rortug ordered it to be methodical and steady. They had plenty of time to crush this position, especially once the disease from contact with the dead bodies began to set in properly. An adviser whispered something to him, and he replied calmly. "Fetch me the one versed in witch hunter methods. Cye."

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Character Portrait: Ishmael Hephestus Character Portrait: Rortug Doricazaei
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Ishmael found that only the knight that was taking the thief alive was at least agreeable in dealing with. He was well spoken, at least by his standards, and was at least trying a somewhat diplomatic approach to matters. Ignoring the chastising and orders dispatched to others, he instead focused his attention on sending the spirits along to their final destination. Despite popular belief, dealings with the spiritual realm didn't always need long and drawn out rituals. In this case, he was accelerating the natural progression, so despite their protests, it was blissfully silent in his head after a few moments concentration. The female knight had been dispatched after the scent of blood, apparently, and a quick look about him detected no new deaths. That didn't need said though, so he kept his silence until personally addressed. Come walk along and see what offer was to be made, or keep wandering like a fool without his last wit? That wasn't a terribly tough decision. "I believe that I have no other commitments to fulfill, so I am free to accompany you Ser. By your leave then." With that, he resettled his weight and rested on the cane more, finding the appearance of being less than physically able far more useful than anything else. It played to the perceived image of many magic users anyways, no need to give away more than necessary.




Rortug was silent when the Crusaders got around to bringing Cye back to him. A gesture dismissed the lot, and they were quick to get clear before a reason to get rid of them was discovered. This smaller man, although in all honesty most beings were smaller than him, had been the reason the Inquisitors could function the way they did. It was a witch hunter method from old, at least old according to this one, and he glanced down and kept his orders brief and to the point, with what little explanation was necessary. "There are not enough Inquisitors to blanket the siege force completely, and I want this remedied for future siege and large scale fielding of manpower. I require methods of creating domes that have the same effect as the individual Inquisitors. Barring that, whatever would fill this role. I am ready to render additional pay for these additional services. Resources necessary will be made available. Questions?" Cye, in comparison to other retainers, had a bit more liberty in the simple fact he was offered a chance to ask any questions about the given task. Rortug was looking back over the opening siege, and if Cye had nothing else to say, was effectively dismissed.