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General Zaheed Thanos

"Baby brother wants to play king. Fine, I'll let him play, but nothing more than that for the child."

0 · 754 views · located in Imos

a character in “The Tribes of Imos 2”, as played by VivaVictoria

Description



General Zaheed Thanos
"A child sits on a throne, while the man fights his battles. "

Theme Songs: Bad Guy- 3OH!3||I Will Not Bow- Breaking Benjamin||The Ruler and The Killer- Kid Cudi


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Full Name: Zaheed Thanos
Though it should be me who changes his name, I was the one denied by the man who gave me the name in the first place.

Title(s): General Zaheed Thanos or General Thanos, due to his military position within the tribe.
I even had a higher military position than Zotar, but no, father gives him the throne.

Age: 36
Six years, six years I am other than Zotar, and by tradition that is my crown he has stolen, my throne, my kingdom, my power.

Gender: Male
What, could you not tell?

Tribe: Fire
And Zotar does not know what it means to be a true fire bearer, no he always fought with father holding his hand. No, like a man I waged my own battles pressured with my own strength.

Position in the Tribe: General
General, heh, some men would kill to have this position, but how many more would kill to be king?

Sexual Preference:
Heterosexual, but unlike Zotar, Zaheed indeed his not a virgin, but has his experience of sexual experience, but however he is married, so that is completely assumed already. But is he a very passionate man to his wife? No, not like he once was, as years passed the attraction and love for his wife has faded, and since he has discovered news that he will not be taking the throne, it is almost like he has completely forgotten about her.
I've come to face love as an illusion, a lie, it sure was with Zarfu.

Positive Traits:

Holds His Temper- This is what makes him different from so many in the tribe, instead of raging in the moment, he instead bottles it up, and these emotions eat away at him, making him the horrid man he is today.

Clever- It is out of his pure wits and smarts that Zaheed wins his battles, he is a very intelligent man when it comes to strategic moves, and that is one reason why Zaheed will find himself a better king than Zotar. Because where his brother would charge into the enemy's front porch, Zaheed instead would circle around and go through the enemy's backdoor, getting a better aim to stab his opponent in the back.

Determined- It runs in the family, if a Thanos wants something most likely they will venture out and take action to get it. They are a people of action, however they do have their different takes of how they would move in action.

Mighty- Zotar may be fast but Zaheed is built with immense brawn and strength. He is a tall towering man, and he likes that, it gives him the superiority he wants to feel.

Is not easily hindered- Zaheed does not allow himself to easily stray from his priorities, unlike Zotar, Zaheed knows how to forget things in return to focus on bigger things. But this can also be a flaw, because instead of being worried that his mother may die at any moment, he however, stresses over his whole betrayal scheme to become king. But this traits has helped in battle where he is not so quickly weakened or shaken by a battle wound, and instead picks himself up and marches on.

I am not easily defeated.

Negative Traits:
Deceitful- Where his brother, Zotar, would lie if it meant to save or better the lives of his people, Zaheed will use deception if meant for his own good. Zaheed is a man of self, of what he wants. Zaheed chases after his own heart and entangles himself with his greed and never does he fight back the selfishness, no in fact he finds that he is quite fond of it.

Manipulative- Zaheed has his way of reading people and he is very good at it also, and with that he sees ways of how to take advantage of someone, taking what they cling to the hardest, or who they love the most and using that not to comfort them, but to conquer them. Too bad the one human being Zaheed could never conquer was his father, but in Zaheed's eyes he always saw Zarfu manipulated and enthralled by his little brother, though that was never true.

Power-hungry- Becoming king was never a dream for Zaheed, no he once believed that his right to the throne was a reality. All his life Zaheed pushed himself to be the king he wanted, not necessary the king the fire tribe wanted. Zaheed would of been the conquering of men, instead of possessing a blood thirst of the rival water tribe, no Zaheed would of made his way to cut the necks of all tribes but this doing with pure logic and utter reason.

Two-face- Yes, no one would believe Zaheed to be an evil man, sure they may have their suspicions that he wants to overthrow his brother, but they have no proof, because he has the talent to his face, creating for himself another one. To Zotar, Zaheed is an actor, he plays the part of a loving brother, however disappointed that his little brother took the throne. But no less, Zaheed says he is proud of Zotar, that whatever was father's will, let it be his will. But in his honest truth, Zaheed sits on a throne of lies.

Selfish- As said before, he lives for himself, life is about him, what he wants, what he wills. And never will he be happy in any position, if Zaheed is king, then the chances that he will strive to godhood are very likely. And it seems with any position given he uses it for power, whether it be older brother, father, or husband, even through those personal roles Zaheed found ways for him dominate, because in the end it was all done to please Zaheed, or so how he sees it.

Why destroy when you can merely conquer instead? That is the question I ask when I look at my brother. No, I will not kill him, because it would bring me much more satisfaction to see him bends knees before my feet.

Likes:
Power||Total Control||His Pet Raven||Zoos||Blacksmithing||Armor|| Horses||Mountains||Card Games||Playing strategy games on the war table||Proving people wrong||Trickery||
Power is only meant for the strong, for me.

Dislikes:
His father||Zotar||Foggy Weather||Sweets||Not getting what he wants||Superiors||Disrespect|| Defiance||
I am the true king of Imos.

Fears:
Never becoming king||Failure||Imprisonment
I am no one's prisoner, I would kill myself before letting that happen.

Hair Color: Black
As dark as the soul of my father.

Eye Color: Brown
Like mud.

Tattoos/Markings: Zaheed has spent more time in the battlefield than Zotar, because he is general, and because he does not move as quickly, Zaheed is engulfed with scars running up and down his body. However he is branded with various tribal marks of the fire tribe.
You can just look at me and see a warrior, no not Zotar though, his skin is as smooth as that of a newborn infant.

Weight: 345 pounds, a lot more bulky and buff than Zotar.
Even without the armor and you could not strike me down.

Height: 6'6, Zaheed is like mountain, towering above his younger brother
And no one shall ever rise higher than I.

Brief Appearance Description: Zaheed is a muscle man of brawn, however he often wears his ceremonial general's armor, with a long, thick, wavy cape that makes him feel superior to others. He does look a lot like Zotar, however older of course, but like his brother, Zaheed has the abundant flowing lack hair and beard, but his being more think and with more volume. But Zaheed is a very intimidating man not only by his strength and height but the way he carries himself, he tries to act friendly, getting people to believe he is a friend and one to be trusted with, but his posture and his walk shows dominance.
I strut because I know I am in control.

Carrying: Zaheed carries a long sword he forged himself, and is quite proud of it knowing of the many lives he has taking by it. But he is proud not because he is blood-thirsty, but power-hungry and he feels in power when victorious over his enemies.

Either you can give me your obedience or give me your life.

Notable Skills/Abilities: Zaheed leans more over to his sword rather than his magic powers, but he does have a signature move of created a fire barrier in cover, or to create bombs of fire, which is basically a fire ball that he expands and lets explode.Fire, yes, it is powerful, but it doesn't make me who I am. It doesn't control me, I do, and I control so much more also, and in due time even more.

History:

Childhood

Zaheed was always jealous of Zotar, it seemed whatever he did, Zotar would be better Well, not better, but that was sure how Zarfu saw it as. Zaheed felt like Zotar had it all, he was spoiled, and what hurts Zaheed, what angers him the most, is the fact that he is the angry one. Did Zaheed attend his father's funeral, yes, of course because Zaheed is two-face, so far no one knows at all that Zaheed hates his father and his brother. Yes they all have a suspicion that he is upset with it, but not a clue of the destruction he has planned.

Family life

Zaheed was married as a young man in his twenties, but the relationship since then has been anything but romance, instead it is of distance and coldness. Zaheed does not quite act like a married man either, and is even heard to be pleasuring himself with other women. But this gossipers and usually found missing days after they tweet this rumors. But as for a father, Zaheed has three sons, but his relationship is not a loving one, but one more of fear, he wants power over his children not a relationship, he is the one that writes their stories, that they will do is because he allows it. Zaheed fears imprisonment but he imprisons his own children. This is because Zaheed didn't have a strong relationship with his own father.

General

Zaheed is a ruthless man, but wears a mask to hide his true ambitions and motives. But a reason of his heartlessness is because he always pushed himself and raced to the warzones, thinking that there would be at least one victor that Zarfu would finally be proud of him. And when Zarfu never showed praise to his son, Zaheed would try even harder, and eventually all this battles had a hard effect on his personalities, making him lose the ability to value human life if all through his he has taken it away. It simply seems to be a job to him now.

Quest to Kingship

And now General Zaheed Thanos is on his hardest mission yet, while his brother sits on the throne for the time being demanding his revenge, Zaheed will sneak around and plot betrayal, helping other tribes to defeat Zotar. And Zaheed is not patriotic, no he does not care if the fire tribe is harmed in his attempt to gain power, no all he cares about is if he has power. And he will work from there to rule Imos.

Nothing will stop me.

So begins...

General Zaheed Thanos's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Talaya Character Portrait: Ara Cilivren Character Portrait: Vladimir Rostovii Character Portrait: Nanoka Dene Tha Character Portrait: Anastasia Campbell Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: Alois Munsee Character Portrait: Frosten Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Helina Dynaris Character Portrait: James Goldsworth
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#, as written by Lyysa


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When Cailu entered the house he had grown up in, the place that now belonged to him, the tribe leaders house. Even if it made him feel uncomfortable to stay there since it felt like it wasn't really his, he still liked it since it made him able to stay with the only family he had left since his younger siblings had decided to travel together to study other techniques and learn more. Because he still had Ara here with him, on the upper floor and when he returned home from meetings he usually always walked up the narrow stairs to knock on her door. He didn't wait for her to open or call out that it was okay to come in because they both knew that it was, so he just opened the door and lowered his head as he walked inside seeing her sit by the small window as she usually did.

"How did it go?" Ara didn't turn her face towards him as she spoke, obviously too mesmerized with the scenery outside to bother with such unnecessary gestures. Cailu could hear how important the question was anyway, he knew it even before it was brought up that it would be the first thing she would speak of.

"I think it turned out fine."

Ara turned her gaze from the window, as did she turn her body towards him. Looking directly at him with a wrinkle between her eyebrows, clearly not satisfied by the answer. But Cailu was happy anyway because she didn't look that worn out at the moment. Even if they were concerned at the moment her eye's still looked lively. "What do you mean?"

With a small smile Cailu stroke the back of his neck, "Well... I didn't really remember what you told me to say so I improvised... But they decided to keep on trading with us so it's good, right?"

Ara blinked a couple of times, confused by what she heard, surprised even, "You improvised? Do you know what problem that may have caused us if you hadn't succeeded?"

"Of course I do, I can think for myself you know."

"This is not about you and your thoughts, this is about you almost making us lose a trading partner."

Cailu quietly looked away, he knew there was nothing that he could say that would make her believe that he could handle the situation by himself. Ever since he had told her about how anxious he had felt about the leader position being put over him, how he felt crushed be the pressure of the expatriations she had been controlling his every move as the leader. Sure, he had appreciated it at first, to get that help, to not feel like he had the whole tribe positioned on his shoulder. Getting more pressed towards the ground by every single day that passed by, but now it felt like it was Ara that pressed him towards the ground more and more by every single thing he had to do. But it was not like he could take that away from her, he knew it was the thing she appreciated the most, to feel needed even when sitting in this room every single day. Even he would try to revolt it wouldn't bring him anything more than perhaps an angry mob chasing him out from the tribe. He knew that if he displeased her so she could easily take the position from him since she had the tribe’s approval and love. She could easily take his place without doing more than just ask their tribesmen to do it for her, she wouldn’t even need to raise up from the chair.

"I'm sorry for forgetting," Cailu walked over to her and lightly picked the flower she had in her out from it just to replace it with a new one, mumbling while doing so, "I'm very sorry."

Ara waved away his hands from her face and shook her head quietly, "Fine. Even if you didn't listen to me you still succeeded and that is all that matters," As soon as she had uttered the sentence her face lightened up by a smile as she leaned back in the chair again, "So now tell me about what happened, who did you meet? How did it look? Oh, Anastasia was with you right?"

Cailu just chuckled slightly at the questions that continued to be sounded be Ara's mouth as he took the second chair in the room and dragged it over to her. When he had placed it beside her before he sat down and started to try to form some sort of answer to the questions that had always been voiced while more continued to come to life.

The setting changes from airedale to Imos

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed Thanos & Lord Vinicius


General Zaheed was rather frustrated at the moment, he ordered the palace guards to search among the living, in hopes to find Zotar. However, it had only seemed like the to-be king was nowhere to be found. The general could assume the position of the throne due to the disappearance of his brother, but what if Zotar were to return to see his brother wearing his crowd, how would the people of the tribe feel? No, it would not be the quick-witted man's decision, and Zaheed always stuck with the clever initiative. Zaheed knew where his brother was, but did he really have to go journey off to his father's tomb, now of all moments, his crowning ceremony would happen in less than an hour.

This was a reason why Zaheed found Zotar unfit for a king, he put emotions in front of his duties, his power and will as leader of the fire tribe. It was cold, cruel, that Zaheed found a visitation to his father's tomb "a waste of time". Zaheed exited the place, and as he did he took a glance at the royal through, with curses and blind anger surging the veins of his brain. But Zaheed was never the one to burst a vein letting the rage spill into a disruptive scene. No, instead he bottled the feelings, letting his emotions grow like parasites hinged to his heart, and eventually eating him up from the inside.

Zotar ran off like that to cry his eyes out, perhaps that is then why I call him 'baby brother', the name suits him far more than that dense-minded name he gives himself, 'Lord Vinicius. Zaheed thought to himself as he marched through the doors of the palace, where he made his way to the royal stable, where the finest horses of the nation was brushed, fed, and cared for. There Zaheed arrived to see his own personal steed, Shadow. The black stallion was fashioned in steel horse armor, as it always was, even out of combat, due to the inclined habit of the fire bearers to be quite flashy or prideful with their war-related equipment.

Zaheed didn't hate his horses, however had no affection to it either. He looked at the animal as did he look at his own family, his wife, and sons. He didn't hate them, because he knew he could control them, however the same was not for his brother. Though this is secret to ever living soul, no one knows that Zaheed shares a fiery passion to despise his own blood, because due to his father's decision, it will be the older brother bowing knee to the younger. But as for Ivana, his mother, Zaheed hardly ever noticed the woman, no he let all of his focus and ever beheld on his father, never giving concern to her, not that she ever treated him unfairly, but that he wanted his father to instead.

Zaheed arrived to the mountain where from there he must climb up the stone built stairs to the tomb. Zaheed finally finished trudging up the stairs and walked into the tomb where he found Zotar pressing a twig with the wooden end masked with his own blood. The cut to which he sourced the blood out from sprouted out from his ring finger. It was fire tribe tradition to write a letter from their own blood to then proceed to toss it to the flames, in order so that the fumes would fly to the realm of the spirit world.

Zaheed patiently waited, letting his brother finish the traditional practice. Honestly Zaheed found it superstitious and pointless, not only because it was Zarfu, the man who denied what he believes is his destiny, but also because Zaheed saw it as once someone dies, they die, there is no need to be hung up over it, there is nothing man can do to prevent death nor resurrect life. After Zotar dipped the letter into the fire, letting it burn to ashes, Zaheed spoke out, "Zotar--"

And to where Zotar immediately butted in, "Its Vinicius, soon it will then be Lord Vinicius."

There he goes again, correcting his brother for using his real name, Zaheed tried his best not to roll his eyes to that comment, but smiled apologizing, though it felt like a thorn through the heart, "Forgive me, Vinicius. But, yes, you will be king and I ask you why are you not in the throne room by now? Your crowning will occur less than an hour from now--”

“Zaheed, can’t you see—,” Zotar sighed, he was getting flustered and aggravated again due to the sorrow he had stored, the guilt he could not afford. “Sorry, Kal’bo.

Kal'bo, it was word meaning, brother, it was a sweet word, a word only given to those who trusted each other, family. And though Zotar wish he could accuse his brother of being jealous that he has the throne, but however he cannot with clear evidence. No, General Zaheed was a master of faces, at one moment he could play the part of a supportive, loving older brother, at another, he lives to be the snake, deceitful waiting to slender among ground to strike his own blood against the heel.

"Don't worry, I understand if you are stressed right now, but wouldn't father want you to be happy the day you honor us Thanos by taking the crown and having the steel of the same bracers that the first king of us once forged into his skin by the flames." Zaheed put his hand on his brother's shoulder, really selling to him the idea that he cared.

"But wait," Zotar drew glances to Zaheed. "Aren't you mad at all?"

"Disappointed, I have to admit, but no matter, I trust father's word. Now, I trust you, Kal'bo."

Lies, lies, and more lies, it gushed through the crevices of his teeth and into the ears of his brother. And it worked, Zotar, loved his brother, he trusted him, even when he didn't want to. "I believe in you," Zaheed vomited yet again another lie as he held his hand out, to where the brother clasped forearms, it was a bond, it was an illusion.

The doors unleashed forward as Zotar stepped into the throne room, he looked around at the people crowded to the sides. Everything felt like slow-motion at the moment, like Zotar stared into each eye of every being in the room, like he was counting every soul trusting him as king, as savior, as protector, as hero. People of all types filled the room, from children to elders, common folk to nobles. But the majority of it was taken up by military, for through out history it was the fire tribe that lavished in strength and might, it could be seen as an obsession with their military.

General Thanos positioned himself in front of his troops, as he wore the mask of a smile watching his greatest enemy rob him of his greatest treasure, his throne, his power.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Vladimir Rostovii Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Helina Dynaris
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Helina Dynaris


“Mr. Forsberj, you have to let me change the bandage or your wound will get infected. Then you'll die.” Although Helina Dynaris was sorely tempted to throw up her hands and leave the old man to his fate, she knew she could never live with herself if she did.

“Good. Get out of my house.” Said 'house' that Mr. Forsberj was referring to was really more of a one room shack that had a bed and a chest. He had moved there when his wife died a couple years ago in order to wallow alone in his misery. He was now laying on his bed with his arms crossed defiantly.

Standing over him with her hands on her hips, Helina glared down at him. “Well, as your healer, I forbid you to die. Now move your hand. And stop drinking!” With his free hand, he had grabbed a bottle of who-knows-what and started to chug it. She snatched it from him and tossed it out the window. “If you weren't drunk every second of the day, you wouldn't have this wound in the first place!” She was there when he had passed out on top of a broken bottle during the celebration of the new tribe leader. She patched him up while he was still unconscious, and a guard had to carry him home.

While he was sputtering in disappointment over the loss of his drink, Helina set about removing his hand from his wounded leg. She had managed to pry it off, but was backhanded in the face. Surprised by the strength in the seemingly frail old man, she actually fell to the floor. Her face stinging, and her hair bun in a mess from the impact, she had had enough.

“You stubborn old man! Do you think your wife would want this? Slapping women around, being constantly drunk, and having a death wish?”

His face consorted in pain as he thought about it, and never answered. Helina's anger evaporated, and her face softened. She stood up and put her hand on his. “No. She would want you to be safe and happy.” He still didn't respond, but he did remove his hand from the wound. Smiling in relief, she set about her work, cleaning it and applying the paste, then wrapping it up in a fresh bandage. As she was finishing up, a knock came at the door.

Knowing Mr. Forsberj never got visitors, Helina frowned in confusion and opened the door. The two guests were the tribe leader's governors.

“Lord Rostovii requires your presence,” one of them said bluntly.

Her eyebrows shot up. Most unexpected. “Uhh, very well. Let me finish up here, and then I will...go to him.” The governors nodded, and left without another word.

She finished dressing the old man's wound and quickly gathered her things. As she was heading out, she received a light swat on the bum from Mr. Forsberj, who winked at her. She laughed in spite of herself, said goodbye. At least he was feeling better.

A few people greeted her as she made her way through the city. Just a quick hello as they went about their daily lives. Being the healer, she knew most of the people in Shadowfen, so she saw a friendly face around every corner. When she arrived at her destination, she remembered that her bun had fallen apart, and her cheeks pinked when she realized that she had just walked through the city with messy hair. She quickly fixed it and stepped inside.

“You summoned me, my lord,?” she said to the new tribe leader.




Sholeh Kanaka


“I'm going to leave you behind!” Sholeh called out to her sister, Serafina, who was lagging behind her. “The ceremony is starting soon, and I'm supposed to be with the military. So move your ass before I leave you, and you have to go with one of your boyfriends.” Sholeh smirked. “Or should I say, clients?”

Serafina just rolled her eyes. “I'm coming.” She picked up her pace slightly, but not enough for her sister. Who groaned.

“Come on! Mom and Dad even made it before you did! And they're old as dirt!”

“Alright, calm down. Look,” Serafina said, pointing ahead, “I can see it from here. Just go!”

Sholeh wasted no time speeding off toward the palace, roughly shoving some people out of the way in order to make it to the group of soldiers marching inside. She quickly slipped into the ranks, but did not go unnoticed. Several of her comrades turned to give her dirty looks for being late. She stuck her tongue out, but otherwise ignored them.

As they walked into the throne room, Sholeh had to resist the urge to whistle in appreciation. It was so much fancier than the little farmstead she had grown up on. She had been inside several times, but it managed to astound her every time. As the soldiers took filed in, she saw that she was lucky enough to get a spot close to the throne. From her position, she would be able to see everything.

More people began to pile in. First the nobles so they would have the better positions. The commoners then came in, and Sholeh shamelessly waved to her family when she saw them bringing up the rear. Beside her, one of her comrades, Kieran, elbowed her in the side.

“Ow!” she protested to him, rubbing her hurt side. She glared at him. “What was that for?”

He gave her a look. “You broke formation.”

She huffed in irritation. “I was just waving to my family.”

“General Zaheed will punish you if you break formation.”

Sholeh looked around the room in an exaggerated manor. “Well, I don't see him! So mind your own business!”

Kieran mumbled something probably offensive, and turned his attention away from her. She didn't stay quiet for long though. “How much longer until it starts?” she asked him.

He growled in annoyance. “When Lord Vinicious arrives.”

A few moments passed. “Do you think he'll be a good leader?” she asked him.

Her comrade looked at her in disgust. “Hold you tongue woman! You tread very close to speaking treason!”

Extremely put off, Sholeh looked away and let the matter drop. She didn't understand why her question was so offensive. She had no idea what kind of leader he was going to be, so it would be natural for her to be curious about it. And it was not like she was suggesting he not be the leader, or anything.

Suddenly, the doors swung open, and revealed Lord Vinicious. She grinned as he passed by, unlike the other soldiers who stayed as serious as always. She saw General Zaheed take his place in front of his troops, and forced down the temptation to stick a tongue out at his back.

'Well,' she thought, 'Lord Vinicious certainty couldn't be a worse leader than his brother would be.

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed Thanos & Lord Vinicius


Zotar's heart was beating, faster and faster as each second passed, he was battle with an army of anxiety as the nervousness sunk into his gut. No, this was not natural to Zotar, he was never scared, why is he scared right now? Zotar has always been the fearless one, he has had to jump off climbs, battle beast, and charge on the frontlines, but even then he was not fearful. But everyman has a fear, to disgrace his people, to fail them was one. He tried his best to hold an emotionless stare but a trickle of terror was shimmered in his eyes.

Did father make a mistake? he asked himself, because all of it seemed so wrong to him. There had been so many times in his life where he bragged and boasted about himself, but was he good enough to be king? Why didn't Zarfu will the oldest son to be king, why isn't Zaheed sitting on the throne this very instance? Zotar even arrived late to his own crowning, and his height was also another problem. Zotar was always insecure about that, he was a short guy, and Zaheed was a mountain. Aren't kings suppose to be mighty, towering above their loyal subjects?

But there was something inside of Zotar that outweighed and outgrew everyone in the tribe, it was his heart, his passionate for his tribe, perhaps suggests the reason why he is still a virgin. Zotar never gave eye to his own pleasantries, instead he chased his obsession, he would chase the flames until he hit the inferno. Zotar final reached his throne, his posture was not the best however he looked discouraged, with his shoulders rolled forward and his head slightly down. In front of the throne stood a fiery iron pot of the royal bracers, that were branding into fire flesh of each king and carved off when he died.

"I-I would like to t-thank... everyone who-- that attended," Zotar was stuttering, he never stutters, but the nervousness ached his heart. His bawled fists trying to keep his hands from shaking. "I--I..." Zotar had no idea what to say, he was as speechless as the day he discovered Zaheed was not going to be king. However Zaheed on the other hand was loving this, At this point it will only take a matter of days before the people over throw his majesty. But then Zotar gave glance to his mother, which torn him even harder, but with that tear he was able to but himself back together. Because looking into the eyes of his mother, Zotar was reminded of his father, he was going to make his family, his people proud. How could he have forgotten the flames that filled his lungs? No, he only had one chance and this was it. Like a dragon, Zotar was going to breathe that fire.

"Children of fire, born with the inferno's kisses and caressed with a heated passion for its sparks that embrace us. Our fires never cease to scorch, and though the spirits of our brothers, sister, mothers, and fathers may return to the realm they never fold to ashes. We will never fold to ashes, and we will never stop burning. Because it is fire that shines the brightest among the darkness!"

Zotar stepped to the pot where with much concretion he dipped his hand inside to grab the bracers, he felt his fingers melt at the touch of it, but he sucked in the heat, harnessing the fire, letting the energy of the flames sink into his very own power. He put the first on giving a ferocious growl. But once he got on the second one he lifted up and clasped his forearms together making a letter "x" with his arms, with a roar of ravenous sound. All the memories clashed his mind, the camp, the tents, his father's tent, the earth rogues' intrusion, the dagger through the back of Zarfu's neck, the inability to defeat death.

"To the cowards of earth, I will have my vengeance. Zotar is dead, he died in honor as did his father, from the warm of their flames arose Vinicius to avenge their deaths. So they can send their armies, their legions, even their own damned leader against me, but for me, all it takes is one spark to set my enemies ablaze. Long live the children of fire!" And with that those that consumed the room cheered for him.

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Vladimir Rostovii Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Helina Dynaris Character Portrait: Canowicakte (Good hunter of the forest) Character Portrait: Kalagisa
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Helina Dynaris


"I'd like to gain your opinion on things, along with giving you some jobs. You think you could do that?"

Helina bit her bottom lip as she pondered his words. She of course had no problem giving her opinions, sometimes she had to restrain herself from doing so, but the jobs could potentially be troublesome. She had a few apprentices but, and not that she was bragging, but she was far superior to them, and there were some wounds only she could heal. But she was not about to turn down the tribe leader.

“I will do whatever you ask of me, my lord. Uh, within reason, of course,” she couldn't stop herself from adding. It was true, though. She wasn't about to go frolicking through the streets naked just because he told her to. She saw a chair nearby and automatically went to sit down, but changed her mind in case it would be seen as disrespectful, and settled for placing her hands on the back of it.

She remembered that it was his governors had retrieved her, and a question sprang to her mind. “Is this about the war, my lord? Are there injuries I need to attend to?” It hurt her to know that people getting hurt, or worse, dying in this war, but she knew that it was sometimes necessary. Sometimes children needed to be punished so they'd behave, and she supposed nations were no different. It was just a shame that men were killing men when they should be helping each other survive natural dangers, like disease, deadly animals, and natural disasters.




Sholeh Kanaka


When Lord Vinicious finished his speech, the room exploded with cheers and clapping. The crowds' excitement got to Sholeh, who screamed and clapped, and even jumped and shot sparks from her hands. The joy at having a new leader again after they lost the last one was enormous. Celebrations began immediately, the people mingling, talking and laughing, servants walking by with trays of wine. Sholeh did not hesitate to take a glass of wine in each hand and scurry over to her family, who looked so out of place and uncomfortable. Well, except Serafina, who had snatched a glass of her own and was flirting with some noble man.

“Having fun?” she asked her parents, who looked they were trying to merge with the wall. They shook their heads at her and gave her looks that could only be described as guilty.

“We're sorry dear,” her father said, “We just don't belong here. We're going to go on home now.”

Sholeh was taken aback. “You're not even going to stay long enough to watch me pledge my loyalty to the new tribe leader with the rest of the soldiers?”

“We really are sorry,” her mother said. “If only your brother, Vukan, had been here.” Sholeh watched her parents push through the crowd and the door as fast as they could. Her excitement dampened a little bit, She downed both of her glasses of wine, set them on a nearby table, and went back to stand with the soldiers.




Kala


Kala sat in her hut at the edge of the village, sitting on the floor with her legs crossed and Lnoli napping on her shoulders, communicating with the spirits. Or rather, trying to communicate with the spirits. They weren't being particularly chatty at the moment.

“Spirits, I seek guidance. I seek to know if Lami has your blessing in letting all the livestock loose in the outsider village that tried to steal her spirit animal last week.” Kala went silent, waiting for a sign. When none came, she cried out in frustration, “Spirits, why won't you answer me?”

“Perhaps because you ask them a question every five minutes. Maybe you've them into silence,” she heard Lnoli say.

She snorted. “Perhaps they mistook your snoring for a demon and fled.”

She heard a wheezing sound that knew to be his laugh. “Perhaps,” he allowed.

Suddenly, the wind outside picked up, make a slight whistling sound. Kala grinned and clapped in glee. “Did you hear that, Lnoli? that's a yes! Thank you Spirits.”

“My joy is unrivaled,” the black fox said lazily.

Kala ignored him and posed her next question. “Spirits, will the war between the tribes end soon?” Suddenly, the wind picked up even more, taking off a small piece of her roof. She frowned. “That is not a good sign.”

She gently put Lnoli on the floor, and stepped outside her hut, though with that hole in her roof, she could still see inside. She was unsure whether it was fortunate or unfortunate that the Great Spirits said no often, but she did have the means the fix her roof handy. She carefully climbed up and set about fixing it with grass and paste.

When she was about halfway done, she looked up to see Chief Canowicakte making his way into the village. She called out to him as he passed. “Welcome back, Chief! Did you have luck on your trip?”

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed Thanos & Lord Vinicius


The palace submerged itself in an array of joys by the celebration of the new claimed king. Lord Vinicius embedded in his flesh, and in his appearance the bracers of the fire kings, however not his crown, his custom designed piece of art, as did every king have there only personally designed crown, where each was stored in the royal display room. No, a symbol of monarchy among countrymen has already been exposed through the bracers, however the crown was only used through meetings or encounters with other kings or official foreigners, for those alien to the land may not be aware of fire tribe traditions.

As Vinicius was making his way to seek out his mother, he was met with hindrance that she could not be spotted in the crowd. He only had left to come to the assumed conclusion that she retired to her chambers due to the lingering illness. And at the point Vinicius was not sure what to do, he was so use to following his father's footsteps. Should he speak to the common folk, or perhaps the nobles? Maybe he should banter with the fellow soldiers? He was undecided until General Zaheed patted him on the back, "Well done, Kal'bo! You are now a king!" The nobles watched at Zaheed applauded his brother's coronation, and by the witnessing of it, the friendly behavior and attachment looked genuinely real, it broke all suspicions of Zaheed being jealous or angry over the situation.

"Yeah, and it was all able to happen through the death of our father," Vinicius muttered back in sorrow, he was still depressed over his father's murder, it was a week before that he was buried, but the images of the blood flowing from Zarfu were still fresh and vivid. Vinicus did since then, battle with depression, grief, and guilt, wishing and believing he could of done something however the truth was he couldn't. And Vinicius never asked for power, but he wishes now he could only have enough to save his father.

"I understand that father's death still affects you, it affects all of us, and because it had such an impact on me I will be dismissing myself from the celebration quite soon to scout amongst the earth tribe, you never know what they may plan to do next. Yes, I could send scouts, but really I volunteer to do this, it may give me a sense of security and a peace of mind."

"Let me go with you," was the first thing that came out of Vinicius's mind and right out of his mouth, wishing to go so that he may be able to also spy on the earth tribe.

Zaheed chuckled, "I wish you could join me also, but you are king now and the king must be with his people, they want you Vinicius, sure you said your words, gave your speech, but now must be the time you give them your heart. Come on, be social, you spent many hours in sad silence, I believe even father would not want you to dwell in such sorrow."

"You're right, Zaheed."

"Yeah, now follow me, a king should get to know his soldiers better," the General led the king to the large and wide dining room where the room was only filled with military, however they were not as uptight as they were at the beginning of the ceremony, now was not the time for the absence of emotions but now was the time for the overflowing of the good of them, with most fist clutched with a strong drink.

But as they approached Zaheed the soldiers turned to him in attention and kneeled, even the General fell to the ground. Vinicus bowed back giving them the signal of his gratitude for their honor, and the troops returned to what they were doing. "So is that going to happen all the time?" Vinicius whispered to his brother.

Zaheed laughed, "You'll get use to it in due time. But for now, I suggest you entertain a bit of a drinking game, yes?"

"What? I don't want to get drunk on my coronation."

"You're right, how about a wrestling match? Not against me, I will have to slip away soon but against one of my fine soldiers?"

"Ha, Kal'bo, you have quite the humor today--." Vinicius never had a problem with rough-housing and wrestling matches, no in fact it was a hobby of his, but he did not believe his brother was being serious, not until the General interrupted with his loud thunderous voice, "Who in here is brave enough to challenge Lord Vinicius to a wrestling match? All for good fun of course. Anybody? Anybody with the sheer amount courage and valor?"

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Vladimir Rostovii Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Helina Dynaris Character Portrait: Canowicakte (Good hunter of the forest) Character Portrait: Kalagisa
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Helina Dynaris


"You have a sharp mind," Lord Rostovii said to her. Helina blushed slightly at the compliment, and replied, “Thank you, my lord. I certainly like to think so.” And now it sounded like she was bragging, which made her even more embarrassed.

Lord Rostovii must have sensed her unease, because he moved closer to her and said, "I may have gained my power only recently as your leader, but I prefer to be seen as an equal. All lives are of equal value, afterall."

His words did make her feel more relaxed, and she loosened her body from its stiff posture.

"I would like to ask your opinion on risking many lives to end this war. I wish to regain peace across the land, the most efficient and quick way I have figured out would indefinitely compromise the lives of our people..."

He moved even close to her, and she looked at him straight on, where she would have looked at him in the eyes if she could see them. He continued his speech.

"The job I have for you would be a lot of work. This includes gaining many followers to teach them how to heal others. Of course, those who have gained a considerate healing ability would be sent to the front lines. We simply need more and more healers, more soldiers, more hope..."

Helina frowned in thought. Did she think that risking the lives of soldiers in hopes that they would be able to heal should they incur mortal wounds was worth it? Yes, she absolutely did. If there was a chance for thee soldiers to live long enough to win the war, then it was absolutely worth the risk. Although, it did lean heavily on her teaching skills, for which was up for debate.

The blind man must have taken her frown for rejection, as he proceeded to get down on one knee and bow. "I apologize for any forms of annoyance or inconvenience this has caused. You may decline if you feel as you surely can't."

The gesture put Helina back into a flustered state, as she was not used to such treatment. ”Oh, uh, of course I will do it! Nothing would make me happier! Do you already have people in mind?”





Sholeh Kanaka


Somewhere between leaving the spot where her parents had been and returning the troops, Sholeh had picked up another glass of wine, and was sipping it with one hand and fending off the advances of a comrade with the other.

“Come on, this is a night of celebration! I'm drunk, you're drunk. Spirits are high, and all that. Let's celebrate together!” He tried to cop a feel under her sorry excuse for a top, but she easily batted his hand away.

“One, I'm not drunk,” she said, in a completely steady voice. “I'm only on my third glass of wine, and my limit is in the six or seven range. Two, it is almost unbelievable that your opinion of your manhood is so low that you would bed a woman who not only beats you in hand to hand combat daily, but also one who's fire abilities far exceed your own.”

Her comrade only smirked. “What can I say, I have no pride.” He tried to touch her again, but again she slapped it away.

Just then, Lord Vinicious and General Zaheed made their way over to the troops. Sholeh quickly set her glass on the floor and knelt with the rest of the soldiers. As she was on her knee, she distinctly felt a hand on her rear. She quickly kicked her foot roughly behind her, making contact with a hard body. She was rewarded with pain filled grunt, which made her smile in triumph.

"Who in here is brave enough to challenge Lord Vinicius to a wrestling match? All for good fun of course. Anybody? Anybody with the sheer amount courage and valor?" she heard General Zaheed boom loudly.

Things could not have taken a better turn. A wrestling match was right up her alley. She bolted right up from her kneeling position and pumped a fist in the air. “I challenge him!”

She immediately ran out to the center of the hall and put her hands on hips. “I gladly challenge you to a wrestling match! And please don't insult me by saying you won't fight a girl, because I've taken down most of those men!” She indicated the soldiers by nodding her head to them, then then punched her fist into the palm of her hand for emphasis.




Kala


"Make your way to the Longhouse with the others of your ilk! I will address the Elders and the council!"

With a slightly raised eyebrow, Kala watched the Chief disappear into the Longhouse, then jumped down from the roof. She grabbed the attention of a nearby child. “Ero, go tell the other shamans to meet in the Longhouse.” The boy nodded, and scampered off to do as he was told.

She went back inside her hut to retrieve Lnoli, who seemed to be more alert after his quick nap. “Come on,” she told him. “Chief is calling a council meeting.” She exited her hut and started walking towards the Longhouse, Lnoli pattering beside her. He did not stay quiet for long.

“Its about the lack of food.” It more more a statement than a question, but Kala answered anyway.

“Yes, I suspect that as well. I hope a solution is found, because although I know you don't mind eating insects, I would prefer not to.”

They entered the Longhouse ahead of the other shamans, and Kala took a seat as far away from the rest of the tribe as she could, Lnoli curled up on her lap. Its not that she disliked her tribe, quite the opposite, but sometimes they were uneasy around her, so she found it much easier to just keep her distance. It wasn't long before the other shamans had shuffled in around her, and the meeting began.

The Chief addressed the issues of lack of resources like she thought he would. When he mentioned a diplomat going to the Air and Earth Tribes, she became excited. She had been hoping to get out of the village and see the world a bit, and here was the opportunity offered to her on a silver platter. She quickly stood up and said, “It would be my honor, Chief, to be said diplomat to the Air and Earth Tribes. I promise I will broker peace and come back with what this tribe needs to endure.”

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed Thanos & Lord Vinicius


I challenge him! I gladly challenge you to a wrestling match! And please don't insult me by saying you won't fight a girl, because I've taken down most of those men!"

Vinicius hinged his teeth together to conceal the curses from inside as he elbowed Zaheed, "Did you really have to do that?" He snarled to his brother, but not that Vinicius was restless over the fact he was thrown into a fist-fight, but it was a fist-fight with a woman, and though the tribe treated women and men quite equally by law, there will always be sexism. But it was not like Vinicius was a sexiest, but that he was a gentleman, and he did not simply believe in hitting a girl, plus due to the fact that the only females that he has had the most interaction was with his sister and his mother. So he has not had much verbal contact with women thus never has he laid hands on them in any form or fashion, thus he had come to the conclusion that it is not right for a man to bring hostile touch to them, including in a wrestling match.

And as for General Zaheed, yes, Vinicius was perhaps not angry at his brother because it as not his fault that a woman volunteered, but annoyed that he did not think to ask Vinicius first before announcing this match. But Vinicius could see this as a way that Zaheed was trying to loosen up his brother's nerves, and he couldn't hate Zaheed for doing something that almost seemed thoughtful and considerate.

And it was not like Vinicius could straight up reject and refuse the challenge, his reputation was on the line. Therefore instead of directly declining it, he would see if he could entertain the soldiers, say no in a more humorous way. And if Vinicius is going to make this enjoyable, he must be confident with himself. He stepped out into the center space of the room with his hands moving slightly as he spoke, "I wouldn't say refusing to a hit a woman is an insult, rather in polite intentions. Yes, I rather be a gentleman, I think the whole rest of the world is tired of bloody bone-headed bastards, yes?" Vinicius did rather well with his remark, entertaining the crowd amongst him. "So with that--."

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Lord Vinicius


“Maybe not. But I'm going to mean this.

It was a sheer dodge, Vinicius had no intentions to fight, well, not anymore. He tried to keep his eyes on her entire body and not on just one portion, that portion being the bleeding wound. And perhaps it was not the biggest nor serious of injuries to a soldier or to a king, but it was enough for Vinicius to stop his offensive in this battle all together. However, if this soldier wished to fight, then so be it, Vinicius guessed his brother trained them hard, never retreat, never surrender.

“Are you going to jump around like you’re Air Tribe now? Stand still and fight!”

“Air Tribe? I don’t suppose they even know what a wrestling match is.”

”Stand still and fight like a man already!

“You mean like a heartless bastard? Real men don’t hit women, especially wounded ones.”

Vinicius continued to dodge even after the taunt, and besides, dodging could have been a good motive of his in order to show off his talents, in order to display his speed, agility, and grace. If he wished to, Vinicius believed he could have already beaten her, such as, when she was on the ground, if he ever were to be so cruel and ruthless, even unfair perhaps, Vinicius could have kicked her in the weakened spot as she was arising from the ground.

But something such as that to do to a woman, seemed sinister to Vinicius, and he could admit that the fire tribe has had their past with evil kings, and Vinicius did not want to be one of them. Though it was hit by hit, blow by blow, and Vinicius continued to cause his enemy to miss, but it then came that point that Vinicius could see that her stamina wearing down. Yes, that was exactly what he want, the soldier to tire herself out, and perhaps with her exhausted state it will seem that Vinicius was the victor.

However in came another troop to interrupt the brawl, “Milord,” he greeted Vinicius hoping to cease the fighting, but the two did not stop, nothing. “Lord Vinicius—“

“Soldier, cannot you not see I am quite busy right now?” Vinicius quick spoke as he duck to dodge her kick. No, Vinicius did not wish to tolerate an interrupt right now, he was so close to tasting his victory. But there was one thing, one person, Vinicius could not force himself to ignore. “It’s your mother! S-She hit the floor,” the soldier cried stuttered as he was nervous to intrude on his king.

The audience in the room froze, everything was dead silent and Vinicius immediately forgot about the match he encountered and stormed to the interrupting soldier whom informed the bad news. Vinicius is known to have a bad temper, an explosive anger, so anyone could imagine that everyone in the room was just counting on Vinicius to now act with another match, but this time against the soldier, and perhaps then a much more violent one, a battle Vinicius was passionate about. But Vinicius knew he could not waste his time with the soldier, and honestly, Vinicius felt that he had no right to hurt the man though Vinicius may have been angry at the moment due to the sick state of his ill mother. Thus Vinicus charged out of the room, and that was the last seen of the lord.

And after Vinicius had left the soldiers that filled the dining room expected that the General would reprimand Sholeh for attacking the king, she had none of permission in engage in a match, but as for Zaheed, he too had vanished from the setting.




General Zaheed


Shadow galloped out of fire land headed for earth, or so it seemed, but Zaheed steered his stead once far away from the eyes of his country to the water tribe. But alongside Zaheed the one other being that travelled alongside with him was his raven named, Icarus. The bird was an eerie sight to be seen, some may say that it looked as if Zaheed had entranced it was witchery. Though it must not be true, Zaheed had trained it, Icarus was the most valuable of Zaheed’s animals, and if he could anything in his life, Zaheed would say it to be that bird.

However as he was far away from fire, in the midst of nowhere, Zaheed stopped, where he pulled from a pouch of his a letter that read,

Dear Zianro Azura, the Wandering River Dragon,
Come nightfall, I will arrive to Lakeshore. I am aware water and fire had fought for years, and it will continue as long as Zotar sits on throne. Yes, his attention may be dragged off of the water tribe, but he is looking to declare war on earth, quite predictable, but also quite insane. And not only would a crazy man accept two wars at the same time, but also a blood-thirsty one. How much longer before he may attack water, how much long may even capture earth ground, building an empire to defeat water. And by then, I cannot be any use to you.

So I venture off to compromise, and speak of further matters in person…
General Zaheed


Zaheed equipped his bird’s beak with the letter and Icarus flapped its wings and glided to water tribe land. When the bird had spotted Zianro, it unleashed the letter. But in decisively clever manner, after ZIanro had finished the letter and set it down, the bird swallowed and devoured the letter, so that no proof that Zaheed was affiliating with the water tribe king may be revealed. And immediately after it was up, up, and away. It learned well from its master…

The setting changes from imos to Lakeshore

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Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Zianro relaxed on the shore of the lake, Shirtless and alone. Feeling rather happy at his current state of contentment. He knew a breath of fresh air would clear his mind. He needed to be out and about more often. Whether it was out in public in his old soldier's garb or in the clothing he was in. He had to play the political game the tribe's inner workings had set for him.

It was then he heard a raven's call as it landed right next to him with a letter in it's beak. Zianro's brow furrowed as he took the letter and opened it and began to read it. Zianro then narrowed his eyes as he read through it all. "Nightfall?! Alone?! General Zaheed, my Old Archrival before I took the role of leader, you're playing a dangerous game. I wonder which of you two is the more insane now due to this. Your brother, or you, for your current deed?" he thought bitterly as the wheels turned in his head. He had to find a way to stop the war on both ends, as he knew fire would be after Earth and Water. And earth was not so keen on water or fire at the moment. He was caught in the middle of a battle triumvirate.

Tossing the letter to the side, he watched the Raven feast upon it before leaving him. Putting on his Jacket, the Wandering River Dragon hurried to the outskirts of the city, all in an effort to head off Zaheed so that way he wouldn't go directly into the city, and be in a quiet area to actually discuss with him, or fight him. Either way, it should prove fun. He had his swords on him just in case Zaheed was luring him to a trap.

He sat on a meadow a few miles beyond Lakeshore, silently waiting. As soon as he heard hoofbeats he got up on his feet and said in a clear voice, "That is far enough, my Archrival. You're a long way out from your home, and your timing is....confusing. I had not expected to see you until the next time your armies came at me. I recieved your letter. What is this about?"

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Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Bellistrad Indorial

The burning sensation in his arms told Bellistrad that his strength was failing him. The timing couldn't have been worse either, as he was currently hanging from a branch almost twenty feet off the ground. He would probably never try to climb a tree in order to get a look at his surroundings without having a sure way down again. The blue haired man had been on his way down when one of the limbs broke off under his weight. He had nearly been able to grab onto one of the lower branches before falling to his death. He still tried to scramble his way up onto the branch but his arms were too tired to move him any more upwards, he would either fall and die or somehow be saved.

He did not know how often the path beneath him was used. It was one of the roads in between the Fire and Water tribes, as he was travelling towards the latter on his current journey. He wished to take a break from being a fugitive in his own land of the Fire Tribe so decided to move into their enemies midst. Granted if anyone found out he used to be a member of the fire tribe while in the Land of Water he could be killed on the spot but he thought it safer than those you might recognize him.

Hope reached Bellistrad's ears as hoof beats came from below. A lone rider was coming on a horse along the road. Bellistrad timed his drop to coincide with the rider being directly below him. As the rider came by underneath Bellistrad landed directly on top of him, possibly knocking the rider off of his horse as Bellistrad rolled over onto the ground and landed hard on his side. Not the most graceful of landings but he survived the fall, and that was importnat.

Adjusting his clothing quickly as well as his pack that was still strapped to his back Bellistrad wiped dust off of himself and took a look at the rider who he had fallen on. To his amazement it was Zaheed, someone who actually knew him and wanted to kill him for his betrayal. Smiling innocently, Bellistrad inched his way down the road. "Oh, sorry about that. I just uh, had gotten into a pinch....bye!" Bellistrad made a trail of dust behind him as he ran for the Water Tribe with most haste, at least that was until he heard a voice from the woods. He did not recognize this one, but it did not matter to him, whoever it was probably was with Zaheed and would kill him as well.

He sprinted down the road not stopping, his lungs only able to function because of the adrenaline in his system. The entire time he was running he scolded himself for picking the least friendly person to land on. Oh well, at least soon he would be able to reside with some comfort in the Water Tribe. Upon arriving at the tribe Bellistrad slowed and caught his breath, almost dying of exhaustion. Being a somewhat well known person to the commoners of almost every tribe in the area besides the Fire Tribe, Bellistrad's arrival was marked by several people who he had aided through tough times come to greet him and offer him food or comfort from his run.

The few people he had aided with his spiritual guidance were nice people and often could be found in the same place, their home tribe. Some asked what was the matter, and why he had arrived in such a rush. He ignored their questions, saying "I will tell you another time, when I am rested." Usually he would stay with the first person who offered him a spot in their house hold, and this time was no different. Almost immediately he had a place to sleep and the warm hospitality of his fellow humans.

The setting changes from lakeshore to Imos

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Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed


"That is far enough, my Archrival. You're a long way out from your home, and your timing is....confusing. I had not expected to see you until the next time your armies came at me. I received your letter. What is this about?"

Zaheed smirked when he witnessed Zianro before his eyes. The general anticipated the fact that he did not have to sneak into Lakeshore, however he came prepared to wear a dark cloak to cover his fire tribe emblems. However the hood that hung over his head, causing a shadow to case down against his face, had only made him look even more suspicious and shady. But no matter, Zaheed stepped off his steed, though he rather wished not to, because he always enjoyed being much taller than someone, it gave him the feelings of superiority. But in respect, Zaheed positioned his feet on the ground, besides he was sure he would stand taller than Zianro anyways, Zaheed was a towering man, he got it from his father.

"Look who it is outside the comfort of his castle, the Wandering River Dragon," the Zaheed spoke jokingly, as he chuckled.
"Why so damn tense? Should you not know I am not my brother. To consider thought, why would I attack you? Would that not only help my brother further? And we both know that is one thing I hope to never do."

Zaheed knew Zianro, he had a past with the man as his Archrival, so Zianro also was aware of what type decisive snake of a man Zaheed. And even before when Zaheed was his Archrival, the general expressed his jealous for Zotar, but it never as bad as it had gotten now. Zaheed was never so passionate about killing his own brother, or venturing off on his own quest to hand Zotar off to his enemies.

"You know exactly what I want, the throne, of course. And yes I could stab Zotar in the back, but I cannot allow for that small chance that the public may know it was my blade that ended his life. They would overthrow me, and the fire tribe is a violent people, I however am not, or would have done the dirty deed myself already."

It was interesting how Zaheed separated himself from his own countrymen, and that was a very good thing for the water tribe. For a man not to even identify himself with fire would say he is not an enemy of water. And honestly, Zaheed was not looking for further opponents in this game of war, his match was against his own teammate. But Zaheed was tired of being the side kick, the second best, the second in command. No, not for Zaheed, he wanted to be on top.

"Let me ask you something, what is your opinion of my baby brother, of the great and mighty Vinicius?"

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"Why am I not surprised? A throne is what my old Archrival wishes. Life is not fair is it?" Zianro stated with a smile. "I have to contend with politics inside the tribe so being leader here is no spring picnic Zaheed." He leaned against a tree. He listened carefully, calculating every risk and every other thing he suggested.

"What do I think of...Vinicius was it? Zotar is changing his name now? Interesting. Well as Zotar, he was admittedly more reasonable then you. Though I'm sure dear father's death jogged his anger a bit. As Vinicius he may be brash, or impulsive. Much like a certain someone." He smirked at Zaheed. "I'm curious on what he will do. If I decide he's being too much of a threat I cannot ignore, or invades lands that are not his, I will take certain.....steps. I'm sure the same will go to any who takes up the bracers of Lord of Fire."

He stopped smiling, his face turning neutral. "Does my answers satisfy you?"

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General Zaheed


"Why am I not surprised? A throne is what my old Archrival wishes. Life is not fair is it? I have to contend with politics inside the tribe so being leader here is no spring picnic Zaheed."

"Politics, a pile of pig shite, it is why fire has dealt with sword. But that is fire, a damned race who fight no urge to rush into battle, at least I would be smart about it. So blind to act without thinking, at least I would ask myself how I would slit my enemies' throats, when, where, and how long would I let the blade swim in the blood locked in the crevices of his neck. But let us get back to my former question, yes what do you believe of my brother?"

What do I think of...Vinicius was it? Zotar is changing his name now? Interesting. Well as Zotar, he was admittedly more reasonable then you. Though I'm sure dear father's death jogged his anger a bit. As Vinicius he may be brash, or impulsive. Much like a certain someone."

"Who, me? Brash, yes, I agree. However not so much with being impulsive, no I rather wait till like farmer gathering crops to harvest my triumphs." Yes, Zaheed was not lying to Zianro, in fact, Zaheed was perhaps being more himself in this single conversation than all the talks and words he has breathed to Zotar. However Zaheed was not only insulted that Zianro had called him impulsive but that Zotar was more reasonable. No, Zaheed always saw him as the much more logical man, he was strategic, but because he clung to that logic he erased or more like ignored all emotions. All that mattered to Zaheed was that he was always right in the end, no matter what it took to get him there.

"Does my answers satisfy you?"

Zaheed lowered his eyes to the ground with a raise of his eyebrows, and almost in a quieter voice he muttered, "When did it ever matter that I was satisfy? Never to Zarfu. That will be changed soon enough." Zaheed looked back up to Zianro with teeth gritted together and in a more serious tone. "I did everything to please that man, he trained me till my bones broke, till I started sweating blood, or till I collapsed in exhaustion, but what felt the most excruciating was when I discovered the day that the truth he once told me that I would be king was only a dream. He filled my head with dream, damn it. And everytime I look at my own brother, at kriffin Lord Vinicius I see that man's cursed face again."

It was clearly seen that Zaheed was different from the rest of the tribe, the fire bearers are known to let lose their emotions, to let their angry explode into a fiery blaze of destruction, but not for Zaheed, no when he ever exposed any emotion his father would rebuke him, telling him, A king never cries, a king never burst into anger, a king controls himself. Zaheed branded his mind with those words, perhaps Zarfu was only telling his son to not to allow himself to be like him, like all the past kings of the fire nation, led by impulsive. Hower Zaheed took that as never become affectionate, so he would have no reason to cry nor be anger, with that Zaheed thought not only would he be able to control himself but others also. So the only person he did allow himself to fall in love with was himself, and even though he was angry because he never got the admiration from his father nor inherited the throne, Zaheed still did not allow his emotions to show, he would bottle them and in moments like this it truly does show.

Zaheed took a deep breath and retained his composure, "Can we make a deal, Zianro? I'm going to give you my brother. Think of it, Lord Vinicius as prisoner. You can of course do whatever you wish of him I prefer you kill him, actually I prefer I kill him, but things aren't just that easy. He is of value, especially depending on how many people he pisses off, and we all know in times like this he holds no concern on stepping on toes especially if its earth tribe's feet. But there is a catch, you will of course have to catch a fish in order to sell it. But have no worries, it will be easy on your part. There will be a royal ball and on that day you could sneak in water tribe soldiers disguised as palace guards, I will provide you with the armor. Your men sneak in kidnap the king and with fire tribe ignorance the people will most likely blame it on the earth tribe, they did kill Zarfu in an ambush, and with my brother's kidnapping it could be seen as an ambush also. So in the end, you will be completely safe and have a king in your hands."

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Zianro smirked slightly as he knew he touched some of Zaheed's nerves. But he was different then the other tribes. That's what made the fire general a perfect rival to the River Dragon. "A deal you say? A bit underhanded, but I think I am willing to listen." He stated as he listened to what Zaheed proposed. Kidnap Vinicius? Hm, there was an advantage to this. He could talk to Zotar in this fashion, get him on his good side and talk of a better life for the entirety of Imos. He can not kill him as this would be too opportunistic for him to pass up.

He also knew that eventually, Zaheed might sooner or later return his attention to the other tribes once he was done with earth. So the chances of his word being kept to Zianro was very slim. Zianro smirked. "Throw in the safety of the Air tribe for the time being as they are neutral to our little spat and I will think on it. And I have a proposal, if you will hear me out. We need him to be distracted. As you said this takes place in a ball, I think what better way to distract the King of Fire than a fair maiden? Then the plan will carry out as you say."

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General Zaheed


"Throw in the safety of the Air tribe for the time being as they are neutral to our little spat and I will think on it. And I have a proposal, if you will hear me out. We need him to be distracted. As you said this takes place in a ball, I think what better way to distract the King of Fire than a fair maiden? Then the plan will carry out as you say."

Zaheed was getting annoyed with Zianro, it seemed to the General, that water king was doing his best to suck out every opportunity he could out of him by ordering Zaheed to provide safety for the air tribe. Zaheed knew he could not do that, the fire tribe would need all there current resources especially due to Vinicius's wild ambition of taking on two wars at once. And because the General had no power to command troops to guard air tribe land without raising suspicion. Couldn't Zianro be happy enough with having Vinicius as prisoner, that was were end of the deal. Zaheed was not going to throw in much more, he knew he had other ways in getting the throne, going to Zianro was just one of them.

But then Zianro mentioned a distraction, which of course is what they would need, it was never in Zaheed's hopes that the water tribe soldiers would get caught because then that would mean that Vinicius was not kidnapped after all and Zaheed doesn't get his throne. And above all things Zaheed knew he was going to be king no matter what, even if it meant he had to do the dirty work himself. "Listen, Zianro, I am not king I am general," it pierced Zaheed heart to admit it, but it was true he could not command the troops to aid the air tribe, sure he was the brother of the king, but blood or not, he did not have the power. And Zaheed knows not to push his brother's kindness, he would not want to push him even further to be skeptical of him.

"The king orders the troops, and I just lead them. I cannot order my troops to the safety of the air tribe. I have already said that you are benefitted in this that you will have my brother, is that not enough for you? Because other than that my cover will be blown. You can imagine that the whole kingdom has the suspicious that I may overthrow Zotar, I would not like to give them more the reason to be.

And as for a fair maiden. To be honest, my brother is thirty and still a virgin. I doubt he has any talent with the ladies. In his chambers or out, he acts as if he has never spoken to one besides his own sister or mother. But however there was an incident this morning during his coronation, or more like after with a wrestling match. I demanded a challenger and it was woman. He tried to play gentlemen which had only pissed her off, never saw how that ended... Don't really want to. But anyways, as I said before, I am general and with this battle have the advantage I know his strengthens, his weaknesses, and finally this war that has not a clue that wages between us may finally come to an end that very night. And to your advantage, you could have him. There is in no way that I would not let this happen for your soldiers if you allowed this to happen, you know as much as I that I want that throne. Whatever to come after that I don't care, I just want what was rightfully mine."

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Zianro raised his hands in small defense. "Okay, okay, overstepped on the air tribe a bit. I understand." Zianro stated as he smiled. He then listened carefully to Zaheed's words as his grin grew. "Now, now, Zaheed, don't you worry. You want it, I'll help provide. But if we want to ensure the plan to work we have to trust each other. Do we trust each other?"

He listened for a confirmation and he smiled. "Very good. "Now I'll smuggle some soldiers in and you provide the uniforms. Stay in touch, let me know if there is something I can use to distract Zotar for a much easier grab. I'd better get back to the palace...weed through more 'pig shite.'" Zianro smiled and turned to walk away.

"Don't be a stranger Zaheed."

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General Zaheed


"Okay, okay, overstepped on the air tribe a bit. I understand. Now, now, Zaheed, don't you worry. You want it, I'll help provide. But if we want to ensure the plan to work we have to trust each other. Do we trust each other?"

"Of course, I have no quarrel, no need to deceive," he answered with full clarity and validity. Zaheed had no desire to betray the water tribe, and perhaps it may be a good thing if he were king, perhaps this plot of treason may actually seal the bond of the two tribes for once. But only in due time in the future, shall anyone ever discover if things were truly that easy. However did Zaheed trust Zianro? For the time being, really because the General could not think why he should not, what would Zianro tattle on the General to Zotar, no of course not. In fact if Zianro even wished to warn Zotar about his brother's plan to kill him, the Lord would attack Zianro for the accusations against his brother. Zotar has always been prejudices to other tribes, especially to water, and now earth has its higher place on his list.

"Very good. Now I'll smuggle some soldiers in and you provide the uniforms. Stay in touch, let me know if there is something I can use to distract Zotar for a much easier grab. I'd better get back to the palace...weed through more 'pig shite.'"

"Have fun with that," Zaheed gave his remark as he climbed back onto his steed, as he was ready to start galloping away he lastly heard the water leader command, "Don't be a stranger Zaheed." The general turned his head to watch Zianro walking away, "One day... One day, no one will forget my name. I can promise you that. And I can also promise you that I will keep you informed." Zaheed then let his horse trot away back to where he spotted footsteps, earlier he recalled an encounter with Bellistrad, the exile rushed away and Zaheed would use the boy as an excuse to why he returns to the castle so late, and if Zotar finds out his brother was in water land, Zaheed would use Bellistrad as a reason why he was there. But Zaheed knew his time was precious and he was not going to waste it looking for him. Instead Zaheed whistled for his little servant. Icarus glided to the shoulder of his master, Zaheed whispered softly to the bird before giving it a light slap on the back as it flew away to stalk the boy, to where it would give a painful and loud screech once he was spotted.

From there Zaheed charged his way back into the castle and away from foreign ground.




Lord Vinicius and General Zaheed


"Argh!" Lord Vinicius gave his fierce bark as he broke a hole through the wooden dummy by the force of his flaming knuckles. Vinicius is not one known for his brawn, but for the burn of his fire, he can break through solid blocks of wooden carved bodies, especially in his state of anger. It was already the day after his coronation and he was frustration, like usual. But it was not only frustration that he was met with, but panic, anxiety, he was fearing his mother's death, and what angered him was not that he could not stop the death from occurring, but that he can not stop it from starting and Vinicius also has no evidence to put a blame. "Poison, flaming poison! I swear! And she does not believe it! Someone killed our father, now they're after mother! I bet its those dirt brains."

Zaheed was leaning against a wooden column in the training quarters as he listened to his brother's bickering, "Well, we cannot rely on assumptions."

"Assumptions?! Is that all you think this all is? Our mother is dying and you say some poisoning her is just an assumption?"

"Well, I'm just being reasonable and if an accusation does not have facts then--"

"Then what I'm saying is unreasonable?"

"Listen, Zotar-- Uh, Lord Vinicius, can you calm down. Please? A request from your brother. Good, I just think you need to relaxation, this whole king thing has gotten you stirred up more than usual."

"Fine... But if I'm going to get my mind off all this stress. I want to pound it out, and not by fighting these dummies."

"Me, brother? If you truly wish to--"

"Nah, your already suited up in your armor, and I learned a little something yesterday, never spar in armor. Err... I don't want to explain the whole story. And why did you just leave like that anyways? Do you know what type of nonsense you caused?"

Saying Zaheed was getting annoyed with Vinicius was a light way to put it. But he had to tolerate I for a time being, at least Zaheed knew for sure, with Zianro's aid, that he was getting his throne. "I apologized that I had to go, but I did warn you beforehand that I had to leave soon to scout our enemy, the earth tribe."

"Well, I guess you had your mission, but couldn't it wait?"

"Actually, it was rather good that left early, I spotted Bellistrad the outcast."

"Alright," Vinicius then rose the volume of his voice, "But I want one of my men to spar me!"

None of the soldiers responded for moments until one spoke up nervously, "W-We are in armor m-milord, already suited up, just like the general, yes?" Vinicius glared at the troop as he approached him menacingly, "Well, if you were listening a bit better, you would recall him about to volunteer himself. If you weren't such a coward, you would do also!" Vinicius sighed, and looked to Zaheed, "I thought you trained your men better."

Zaheed would only confess to himself that he has not been pushing his men the hardest, because has not been concreting much on his current occupation but rather how to acquire his future on. "Fear not, Vinicius, I will see to it that not only him, but the rest of my soldiers are fearless and discipline. And about the woman who attacked your majesty, there has already been a dispatch of guards to arrest her."

"Wait, your arresting her for her bravery? Damn it, she should be rewarded for the courage to face a king."

"You were happy with her actions?"

"Why shouldn't I be? I want her summoned to my throne, room, but stick the arrest, I want to give her a surprise." Vinicius started walking in the direction to his quarters, where he would then dress into his everyday armor attire. But then he stopped. "Oh and Zaheed. What is her name?"

"Name? I had a report done on her due to the event yesterday. Her name is Sholeh Kanaka."

"Good, then I will be seeing Kanaka soon."

Lord Vinicius laid back high and mighty in his great throne with chin against the palm of his hand, with his finger tapping against the arm of the chair impatiently. But when Sholeh did arrived, Lord Vinicius sat up and leaned forward, glaring at her. He was not mad at her in any form or fashion, but instead was curious how she would respond to him, and how would she feel about the whole situation, her not given the chance to fight the king simply because of her gender, and his honor. "Sholeh Kanaka, you are accused of treason. That is a serious offense. You attacked me even after I continuously dodged your attack. You do know the punishment of treason is death yes? Do you have anything worthy to say to make me consider otherwise?"

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

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Lord Vinicius and General Zaheed


“No, I don't. I could say--."

"That is enough!" General Zaheed barked, but Vinicius gave him a quick split-second glare that said, Settle down, I got this. But Zaheed was only trying his best to make the whole arrest and confrontation more believable and intense to Sholeh. However, Zaheed backed off, and eased himself.

"Continue," Vinicius permitted Sholeh to finish.

“I could say that I was stupid or hotheaded, or I drank too much, but none of those are really good defenses. If anything, those give you even more reasons to get rid of me. You probably would've killed me right then and there for being so disrespectful if you hadn't had to attend to the queen.”

Reminding Vinicius of his ill mood had only darkened his mood, but he was still going through his plan. He knew Sholeh was a brave and courageous soldier and he liked that, which was rare, for most kings of fire despise the type of fearlessness when it came to standing up to their king. Not that Vinicius would be please in rebellion, but in the courage it took to arise to the occasion.

“Oh, how is the queen? I hope she's better, I wouldn't know what to do if it had been my own mother.”

Vinicius did not want to answer the question, because in reality, he did not want to face the truth. His mother was getting weaker by the day, she was no longer living, no she was dying, and like his father, Vinicius was watching, unable to do anything about it. More and more the healers, and physicians become fearful, as if they feel terrorized themselves, dreading the day when Vinicius loses his temper, the day she dies due to their inaction to stop it.

"She's... My mother... is fine," he finally choked, trying to convince himself of the truth. But Ivana had pushed her son to make the date of the ball sooner, because she herself can sense that her exit in his life is near. And she wants to be alive to see what woman would take care of her son. Yes, Ivana was worried about Zotar, ever since his father's death, ever since the whole Vinicius thing started, he has lost it. Sure he had thrown fits with others so easily now, but it is even worse with himself. He has been doing more than just grieving, he has been hurting, hurting himself. Such in ways that he has fasted to an unhealthy state, and some servants have witnessed himself purging his body in water for long moments, almost as if he is trying to drown himself, but knowing that his father called himself to be king, he lifts himself from that self-torment, but only returns for another session.

But as Zaheed hears this, as sick as it sounds, the General smiles in joy when he hears his brother attempts to drown himself. It not only puts a higher chance that Zotar may die, and Zaheed gets the throne, but it also weakens Zotar's fire, cooling the veins, causing his flames to take longer to fuel.

"If that is it... General Zaheed, would you do the honor of the execution?"

"My pleasure, lord," Zaheed unsheathed his sword and stormed to Sholeh, where guards pressed her head down to face the floor, revealing the back of her neck. Zaheed rose up his sword and let it dive downwards, aimed for the flesh. But only hairs away from the neck, the lord, rose his hand up, "Stop! Unhand her. Kanaka, walk with me."

The soldiers let go of Sholeh while Vinicius stepped down from his throne and walked alongside with her out of the throne room and into the outside balcony, another region for dining, but before they reached their destination Vinicius noticed Zaheed tailing them, stalking them. "Zaheed," Vinicius started. "You can stopped following me now, I'm not a little boy anymore. I think I can handle myself."

"But can she handle you?" Zaheed remarked. "Okay fine... I'll leave. I was just making sure she would not attack you... again." The General finally left them alone. Vincius leaned against the balcony fence, over-looking the massive city of Murtovaara. "He can pestered sometimes... Often, but I'm sure he feels the same way about me. But we're brothers, and I remember family sticks together... well, unless they are dead... Unless a bunch of dusty dolts kill them... Bastards." It was obvious since Sholeh had brought up his mother, he has become genuinely depressed, earlier he was acting angry but now was no joke, no show. He was in sorrow, sorrow mixed with fury as his clenched fists on the stone fence started to fume smoke.

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

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Sholeh Kanaka


"She's... My mother... is fine." The way Lord Vinicius said it made Sholeh doubt the validity of it, but for once she had enough brains in her head to hold her tongue.

"If that is it... General Zaheed, would you do the honor of the execution?"

“Shit!” Sholeh managed to gasp as the guards pulled her to the ground. Never in her worst nightmares had she expected to die like this, a traitor killed in her own city. She had always expected to die on the battlefield, surrounded by enemies. She closed her eyes and waited for the end.

"Stop! Unhand her. Kanaka, walk with me."

At these words, Sholeh's eyes shot open and the guards released her. Surprised, she quickly jumped up and eyed the king in confusion. As he got up to leave the throne room, ran over to follow him before he changed his mind and went through with the execution. She followed him outside to a balcony that overlooked the city, but he stopped to address the general.

"Zaheed, you can stopped following me now, I'm not a little boy anymore. I think I can handle myself."

"But can she handle you? Okay fine... I'll leave. I was just making sure she would not attack you... again."

Sholeh gave him a rude gesture behind his back, then turned to Vinicius, who was leaning against the fence.

"He can pestered sometimes... Often, but I'm sure he feels the same way about me. But we're brothers, and I remember family sticks together... well, unless they are dead... Unless a bunch of dusty dolts kill them... Bastards."

She knew he was talking about the death of his father. The fact that he was killed by earth assassins was common knowledge. Still incredibly confused about these turn of events, but being a girl possessing no reservations or timidness, she walked over to the fence beside him and jumped onto it, her back facing the city and her feet dangling in front of her as she got into a sitting position.

“They'll get what's coming to them,” she said to him, trying to be comforting. “Karma has a way of making sure everyone gets what they deserve.” She paused and smiled. “And when Karma fails, that's what soldiers are for.” After a moment of silence, Sholeh blurted out, "So...are you going to kill me or...?"

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General Zaheed


“They'll get what's coming to them, Karma has a way of making sure everyone gets what they deserve. And when Karma fails, that's what soldiers are for.”

Vinicius kept his glaring eyes down in the city as he spoke, "Soldiers... Believe me, I have thought about attacking the whole damn earth kingdom, going into another war, though we are already in one with water. My mother and brother both urges me to reconsider that thought, to man lives are at risk, and though we are dominant in supply and resource when it comes to weapons, armors, and such, but are prepared enough to go through two wars. And if I don't attack, bite back like some vicious dog, the public will see me as a coward. Flames, they probably already lean to that assumption due my refusal to hit you. It’s not that I find you weak to be a woman. I just don’t think it is right for a man to strike a woman."

There was of course another reason why Vinicius would wish to slaughter the earth tribe, of course, it was obvious, why did his name mean vengeance after all? Vinicius hungered for that revenge, but he had a distaste for a defeat on the tribe. In hard decisions like this, Vinicius wished his mother was queen, she would know what to do, however not only that, but how to do it. Vinicius could always listen to her of course, but what voice yells louder than hers? His. Vinicius was always the stubborn one, but also one who listened to his heart, he was a passionate man. But in the end, or at least for now Vinicius has decided to hold off any attacks until after the ball, which was occurring soon in a matter of three days.

“Kill you?” Vinicius questioned, backing off the fence. “It sure seemed that way. Don’t worry, I just wanted to give you a little surprise in the throne room.” Vinicius looked up at Sholeh, “But if you are worried about dying, you may want to get back to ground, rather than sit at the edge of the fence. Let me have your hand.” Vinicius held his out and when she grabbed her pulled her back to stand beside him. “Wouldn’t want to fall yes?” It be a lie if Vinicius said he didn’t care about her, of course he did, he cared about all those of his tribe, be he cared for her specifically because of the bravery that shone through her.

“I want to promote you,” Vinicius confessed. “You are courageous, and though our soldiers are known to be a fearless bunch, the truth is, due to history, due to the type of kings we have developed through the past, people fear our kings. But you didn’t, I like people who can take a stand.” Vinicius blushed when saying that, and looked away. “Well not like that. I mean… Errr… I do like you..." Vinicius was getting nervous, he felt different, perhaps it was because he rarely carried conversations with women outside of his family, mainly because before with his father, he was a child, he was not worried about being king, not worried about an heir to the throne. But since his death, and with the ball, finding a wife, he could admit to looking upon woman differently but not lustfully. No Vinicius would never do such, in fact he is rather sheltered in the topic of sex. Why? Because he never felt a hunger to it, he values a relationship, not a body.

Vinicius finally sighed, "I admire your courage, for you to approach me. I have never seen anything like that before, a soldier standing up against her king. And I don't see it as treason either, treason is disloyalty. You to face me, I must say... It was an honor, though I did not fight back. And because of that, I personally invite you to the royal ball, the town criers will go out today to the public to announce it. But I thought it be better to invite you myself."

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Ara Cilivren Character Portrait: Anastasia Campbell Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Kalagisa
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Sholeh Kanaka


“Kill you? It sure seemed that way. Don’t worry, I just wanted to give you a little surprise in the throne room.”

Sholeh's eyes went big. “Wait, so you were just having fun with me? But...” She paused to think about then grinned. “OK, I probably deserved it. You really had me, too.”

“But if you are worried about dying, you may want to get back to ground, rather than sit at the edge of the fence. Let me have your hand. Wouldn’t want to fall yes?”

She took the hand he offered and hopped off the fence, but couldn't resist a little teasing. “It sounds like you're doubting my flying skills. I should have you know I've only broken three bones falling off of buildings.” She settled for leaning her back against the fence and facing Vinicius.

“I want to promote you,” he said, and she was actually glad that he got her down from the fence, because she surely would have fallen right over the side wasted said promotion. She even literally felt her jaw drop and was positive that she was staring at him like a crazy person. She was so happy that she almost missed what he said next.

“You are courageous, and though our soldiers are known to be a fearless bunch, the truth is, due to history, due to the type of kings we have developed through the past, people fear our kings. But you didn’t, I like people who can take a stand. Well not like that. I mean… Errr… I do like you..."

And now she was being complimented for being courageous when everyone else just called her stupid and impulsive. Most people just look down on her for the way she is, but here was the king of the entire fire tribe praising her for it. She had to bite down on the inside of her cheek to keep from grinning like an idiot.

"I admire your courage, for you to approach me. I have never seen anything like that before, a soldier standing up against her king. And I don't see it as treason either, treason is disloyalty. You to face me, I must say... It was an honor, though I did not fight back. And because of that, I personally invite you to the royal ball, the town criers will go out today to the public to announce it. But I thought it be better to invite you myself."

Sholeh was so touched by his kinds words that she forgot who she was talking to and threw her arms around him. “I am so unbelievably grateful for all of this! I can't believe I'm being rewarded for...” She suddenly remembered what she was doing, and quickly withdrew and took several steps away. “Oh, I am so sorry, you know I have impulsive control issues, and I probably just violated every one of your boundaries. So, assuming I didn't just ruin everything, I would love to come to the ball. Maybe someone will do something so stupid there that everything I do will pale in comparison.”

Her mind drifted back to their earlier conversation about the earth tribe. She stepped over to the fence and faced the city. “You know, I don't think the people will be upset if you don't retaliate against the earth tribe. I mean, some will be, but I don't think the majority will be.” She glanced back at Vinicius. “Do you know how many funerals I've been to for my comrades? I've lost count. The common folk just want their loved ones, they barely pay attention to the war. And we're the winning team, I can't even imagine how many loved ones the common folk of the losing teams have lost.” She gave a half smile. "Not that I'm complaining. I love being a soldier, and I'm on your side, war or not."




Kala


After days of traveling, Kala and her group could finally see the edge of Airdale. She hoisted Lnoli up on her shoulders in his usual place, and turned to address the warriors who had accompanied her. “Alright, you guys stay here while I go talk to the guard. We don't need them to think we're coming to attack.”

She left the ten warriors and the supplies behind while she approached the outskirts of the village. There were a few people that Kala assumed were guards, and she approached one of them. “I come from Northpass hoping to trade some rugs, clothing, and hides for food. I come with ten other warriors solely for protection. May I be permitted to speak to your leader?”

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Lord Vinicius


“I am so unbelievably grateful for all of this! I can't believe I'm being rewarded for...”

Vinicius was a first startled by the embraced, but soon enough, he liked it, actually letting an arm wrap around also. He enjoyed that she did not let his crown get in the way, it was one thing Vinicius feared, that people would treat him differently because of his position. Well, actually they always have, Vinicius was born Zotar Thanos, born into the royal family. But after being crowned king, he assumed there would be significant change, a change he never wanted to experience at least not from his soldiers. Sure he wanted respect, but he still wanted to be treated like a human being.

“Oh, I am so sorry, you know I have impulsive control issues, and I probably just violated every one of your boundaries. So, assuming I didn't just ruin everything, I would love to come to the ball. Maybe someone will do something so stupid there that everything I do will pale in comparison.”

"No harm done," Vinicius replied, letting a slight smile form in his lips, though he was starting to blush again. "I don't care for the restrictions put on soldiers, even commonfolk, when it comes to my position as king. I like that you break those rules. So, I don't find it stupid, I find it... appealing."

“You know, I don't think the people will be upset if you don't retaliate against the earth tribe. I mean, some will be, but I don't think the majority will be. Do you know how many funerals I've been to for my comrades? I've lost count. The common folk just want their loved ones, they barely pay attention to the war. And we're the winning team, I can't even imagine how many loved ones the common folk of the losing teams have lost. Not that I'm complaining. I love being a soldier, and I'm on your side, war or not."

Bringing up war brought Vinicius back into a bad place, dark thoughts, "No, I swear, and I have already swore, whoever killed my father will pay. I just want to make sure its the right son of a bitch I blaze to flames. Its just that right now I don't have enough to proof that it was the earth tribe, sure earth bearers were the ones who attacked, but what if it was not the kingdom, what if someone else hired then." Vinicius sighed, "It just doesn't make sense for them to attack. As far as I remember we didn't ever piss into their ale to cause them to kill my father, a king. I have so much on my plate right now, trying to get some off before worrying and deciding about going into another war. I do consider what you say, death among the clan should be avoided, but if we do not execute those who wish to cause further harm, could only conjure more destruction to us than to fight back. And maybe, it be easy for me think after the ball, once I'm married and it is not only I would have to make the hard decisions."

Yes, Vinicius believed he would have an easier reign if there was a queen. Sure he had advisors who advised, but they did not know nor lived in his shoes, in his positions. It would be better to hear guidance and suggestion from someone who felt the same pressure and stress as him.

Vinicius looked back to Sholeh, "But, know is the time to talk about you. Promotion, I did promise, however what rank are you now? A foot-soldier, a lancepesade? Well, how about a vassal lord, a captain, perhaps? Ever thought of being in charge of your own company?" Vinicius did just meet the woman the day before, he didn't know if she did well with others, or if she was a good leader, but none of it matter as long as was loyal to the flames. Captains were those looked up to by their subordinates, and by her stand, Vinicius believed anyone should follow her steps. Sure Sholeh acted by impulse, but she was human, so many soldier lose their humanity, in the end they act like animals, heeding command in fear of punishment, not due to bravery. And courage is worth much more than an terror locked into heart.

So no, Vinicius will not regret promoting Sholeh to be in charged of her own company, her own band of soldiers. It was a significant jump in the ranks, usually its a lancepesade to lance corporal, to corporal, to second lieutenant, to lieutenant, and finally to captain. With her promotion, she would be a commissioned officer, an elite rank. The only rank higher than that was general. Sure some may call it foolish that Vinicius was just giving out a promotion because of something that happened in one day in his dining room, and not in a battlefield. But how many men in fire kingdom history, approached their king refusing to retreat, to surrender. And you never know, maybe she might get her biggest promotion after that, queen.

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed


Even after Vinicius dismissed his brother, Zaheed continued to eavesdrop on their conversation. How couldn't he? General Zaheed was a snake, he slithering his way into other's secrets. There is no doubt, he is a keeper of blackmail and slander, things left best unknown. But as he listened to their conversation, there was no doubt that Zotar found interest in Sholeh, especially due to the fact of the promotion he gave her. Captain? Zaheed questioned his brother mentally. Is he insane? Not only does she attack a king without punishment, she is rewarded for it? That reward, being captain? He is condoning rebellion! Treason! This is exactly why I must be king!

As the rage within mind waged, Zaheed heard a screech sound, but it was not any cry of an animal, it was Icarus's, the raven. That was it, Bellistrad Indorial had moved out of the water village, now was his time to strike, to capture the exile who trifles with the water tribe. Not that Zaheed has a problem with the water tribe as a whole, but the fire tribe does. And by law it is a grave crime to be associated with foreign enemies. But Zaheed could not care less about fire law, he only had cared about himself, afraid that this Bellistrad may have done his own eavesdropping on him and Zianro. Why in that moment Zaheed did not waste time ending or dealing with Bellistrad when first encountering him, was because it is not everyday that the water lord will associate with a child of fire.

But now was his time, the General rushed out of the palace, and to his steed, and already mentioned before, the horse was dressed in battle armor due to traditions. And as for Zaheed, he was always wearing his armor, it comes with being General. However he was now wearing his menacing pitch black helmet, the headgear was designed to look terrorizing, it was what Zaheed wanted to strike his eyes with- a nightmare. Zaheed kicked his horse's rump, causing it to gallop fiercely to the direction of Icarus's cry.

When Zaheed arrived to Bellistrad, the General was positioned behind the young man, sword unsheathed and wagging as he charged his horse towards the exile. The chase was on.

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Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bellistrad had been walking for another hour or so since he had seen the hawk and had already taken the turn towards the Earth tribe when he heard the sound of hoof beats behind him. He expected it to be a traveler in a hurry, or a merchant in a cart, so he moved off to one side to let them pass by. Lucky him he looked back at the rider for it was indeed not either of those things, but General Zaheed instead, weilding a mighty looking sword no less.

Terrified, and not only because of the dark helmet he wore, Bellistrad flung his pack up onto a nearby tree branch and focused his energies into one of the eight Chakras, which were the spiritual energy wells of human beings, that he had control over. The one he focused on was Root Chakra, located in the base of his spine, which dealt with survival and fear. Using this energy he sparked blue flames from his palms as he rotated to his right, propelling himself with the ejection of fire and twisted out of the way of the horse's path as well as the sword's.

Bellistrad ended up face first in the road as Zaheed rode past him at high speeds. Bellistrad expected him to circle back so he got to his feet quickly and took a stance used specifically for Agnikai, a fire-bender's dual. With his arms placed in front of him and his palms out with his fingers bent like claws and his feet a little wider than shoulder width apart, he was ready for Zaheed to return. Normally he would not promote violence, but since there was not much shrubbery on the rode where he was and the general could easily outrun him he had little choice.

"If you want to kill me this bad, I must have slept with someone you like. Or your brother liked, which is worse. I would have rather gone to bed cold and alone!" He knew this would enrage Zaheed and make him lose control, which for a fire mage is never a good thing. Especially the part that insinuated he was here on orders of his brother, for everyone who was or is in the military knows that Zaheed doesn't like to take orders.

Bellistrad on the other hand was completely calmed down thanks to his use of his Root Chakra to settle his fear. He now used this chakra to power the next six chakras in his body all the way up to the crown of his head. The last chakra was not charged, as it was only used while sleeping or Astral Projecting. Bellistrad was confident he could outmatch Zaheed enough to escape, although he might not come out in one piece.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Lord Vinicius


“Uh, that would be amazing. Actually, that would be my dream come true. Wow, that's an even higher position than my brother, Vukon, had. He only made it to corporal. He probably would have made it all the way to captain if he hadn't... If he hadn't deserted his tribe for that strange girl he met on the road, he would have been one of the best. Who does that? Who just abandons their family and future like that?”

Vinicius was glad that me could fulfill one of her dreams, she deserved it, well in his eyes of course. But really, Vinicius saw that she proved herself to be a true warrior and soldier. However, he could be making a mistake due that he has not yet seen how she fares well with leadership, it may have been better to give her a promotion of corporal instead to see how she does with that position first instead of automatically allowing her to be captain. But also to Vinicius, he thought why not, soon in a few days he was going to crown some woman in a matter of one night, queen, so it did not seem to be a problem to move Sholeh up far in the ranks.

But he also noticed how she went to a dark place in her mind when brining up her brother, Vinicius could relate. He often visited his own nightmare when reflecting on the event that ended his father's life. He could see the frustration and sorrow instead, as did he experience it in his own self.

“Wait, this whole promotion thing isn't just another joke like the execution is it? Because I'd be disappointed, but I'd understand. I mean, I highly doubt the men that used to be my superiors are going to want to take orders from me. They barely see me as more than an annoying weapon to throw at the enemies.”

"Yes, I'm joking, I'm totally joking, ha ha," the lord spoke sarcastically, but then turned his eyes back to Sholeh. "No, being serious, I want you to be captain, perhaps your brave motives and courageous actions may influence those of lower ranks below you, and even those of same position, and maybe even my brother may be inspired. But if Zaheed were to praise you for anything, then I would say you were from the divine, for that is doing of the impossible. Yeah..."

Vinicius knew that Zaheed did not like Sholeh, even though it was him that started the wrestling match that got Vinicius to meet her in the first place. Zaheed hated Sholeh's stand against Vinicius, he saw it has rebellion, as treason, that she should no be rewarded, no but executed by a slow and painful death in example against all that side with defiance.

"But you shouldn't be looked as a weapon, no one should. I know that when I get a body count during aftermaths of battles, that it is not just a number, because it is a person. So many of our military leaders forget that, the thirst for blood has always ran rampant in this tribe. However, I never thought us perfect. But I also never thought us weak, either. And we won't be, not while I am king."




General Zaheed



As Bellistrad tossed his blue flames asunder to the General, Zaheed evoked a shield of infernos around him, protecting both himself and his horse, he fought fire with fire. Zaheed knew there was no defeat reckoned for him in this match against the exile, Zaheed preferred hungry fist over wagging tongues, he saw things better settle with violence rather than politics or talk, but he is not one to rush into battle, not if he has every ounce of belief inside that he was going to be the victor. No, Zaheed never just wanted to fight, he wanted to conquer, and to conquer successfully, you must be clever.

"If you want to kill me this bad, I must have slept with someone you like. Or your brother liked, which is worse. I would have rather gone to bed cold and alone!"

General Zaheed had to make his way to circle around Bellistrad, but he wanted to do it quietly, catching the young man off guard. Thus he stepped off from his horse, because he believed if he was going to do this right, the best thing would to have Bellistrad strangled in his grasp. But being practically silent is not quite realistic when equipped with his type of heavy armor, thus loud clunky noises sounded as he walked, Zaheed knew he needed a distracted, luckily Icarus, the raven, had flown and perched itself to its master's shoulder when seeing that he had arrived. Zaheed whispered to the bird to cause it great disturbance, and thus it listened and soared out and landed on the ground in front of Bellistrad, piercing loud and horrid screech through his sound barriers.

Though the bird sudden stopped, complete dead silence, but it had only ceased its screaming when Zaheed was finally behind Bellistrad, he pulled him into a choke hold, his blade against his neck, responding back to the taunt that was earlier made by Bellistrad, "Believe me you are doing the world a favor by returning to bed in solitude, just like Zotar." Zaheed dragged Bellistrad to a tree and pinned his body against the trunk, back facing him with his sword pressing against his back, if Bellistrad tried anything Zaheed could surely stab the blade through the boy. Zaheed's other hand held tight against his face, pushing his cheeks against the bark.

"I could kill you," Zaheed announce. "But that would be a waste of opportunity on my part. I still have some questions. Were you spying on me last night? Do tell the truth, I already have a headache from the screeching of my bird, I would have a bigger one due to your torturous screams if lies were to arise.."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bellistrad kept his eye on Zaheed as he dismounted his horse and started towards him. While Bell had known the General since before he had achieved such a rank he had never been fond of him in the least. He was sure that a few of their past feelings would come out in this fight, feelings that Bellistrad wished to overcome and move on from as was the way of his beliefs. Emotional attachment to the past, or any attachment therefor, was only holding one's spirit back from it's true potential.

Bellistrad almost jumped however when a small raven stood in front of him making a loud ruckus. "Oh, so you are the one who sold me out eh? How nice of you to stop by." He had a profound respect for all living things and that included the raven despite it's part in Zaheed finding him. In an attempt to touch the bird Bellistrad gained a nasty peck to his finger followed by more noise.

"Well that wasn't nice, you..." Bellistrad's words were cut off by an arm around his throat and a sword at his back. All he could get out was a strangled chocking sound as he was pinned from behind by Zaheed. "Believe me you are doing the world a favor by returning to bed in solitude, just like Zotar." Being moved to the side of the road, Bell was thrust face first against a tree right beneath his pack which hung above their heads. Zaheed pressed the sword harder into his back as he spoke.

"I could kill you. But that would be a waste of opportunity on my part. I still have some questions. Were you spying on me last night? Do TELL THE TRUTH, I already have a headache from the screeching of my bird, I would have a bigger one due to your torturous screams if lies were to arise."

Bellistrad hadn't the slightest idea what he was talking about, until he remembered seeing Zianro as well on the road last night. It all came together, either Zianro was selling out the Water Tribe to Zaheed, which was less than likely. Or Zaheed was selling out his brother to Zianro,which was almost a perfect plan for Zaheed to cook up. Bellistrad sighed and leaked sarcasm into his voice.

"Well, you are just too smart for me, you caught me red handed...or blue handed in this case." Blue flames were surrounding Bellistrad's hands which were coming up from underneath to grab Zaheed's sword blade, clamping his fingers on either side of the flat edge so he did not get cut. Channeling all his energy into his fingers Bellistrad would melt his way through Zaheed's sword cutting it in half and turning a good portion of it to slag.

Whipping around Bellistrad drops the sword pieces he was holding and shook the extra slag off of his hands so he did not get burned when his energy left his hands. "That's better. But seriously, no I did not stay on the road long enough to hear whatever was said. I was tired and wanted to find rest in the Water tribe. So you can just back off old man!" Striking with punches at Zaheed, he sent balls of blue fire out at him in an attempt to drive him further away. A long range battle was more in Bellistrad's favor.

Continuing the assault behind the many balls of flame, Bellistrad did sweeping kicks through the air to send arc of thin blue fire in Zaheed's direction, making him have to work in order to not be hit and put him on the defensive.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Ara Cilivren Character Portrait: Anastasia Campbell Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Kalagisa
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Sholeh Kanaka


"Yes, I'm joking, I'm totally joking, ha ha. No, being serious, I want you to be captain, perhaps your brave motives and courageous actions may influence those of lower ranks below you, and even those of same position, and maybe even my brother may be inspired. But if Zaheed were to praise you for anything, then I would say you were from the divine, for that is doing of the impossible. Yeah..."

Sholeh smirked. “Yeah, he's a real sweetheart isn't he? He's a little too serious for us to really get along.” Not that they had ever interacted much. There were too many stations in between them for her to ever get any direct orders from him. But she always got bad vibes from him, and she was one to trust her intuition. “But at least he's...dedicated,” said, struggling for a compliment.

"But you shouldn't be looked as a weapon, no one should. I know that when I get a body count during aftermaths of battles, that it is not just a number, because it is a person. So many of our military leaders forget that, the thirst for blood has always ran rampant in this tribe. However, I never thought us perfect. But I also never thought us weak, either. And we won't be, not while I am king."

“I think the tribe being weak is the last thing you have to worry about. The soldiers I know are passionate about protecting their home and their king, and they'll fight to death. Their loyalty runs deep, probably because they're young enough to remember only one king, and they had it pretty good under him. They're hopeful about you, too. I definitely like you so far.” She grinned. “You're a very good sport about...everything that happened.”

The fact that he was rewarding her for something most kings would execute for still baffled her. Not that she was going to start bringing up points on why he should execute her. She'd tempted fate numerous other times before, and they never ended well, so she wasn't going to do it now.

“And when you find your queen, we'll be loyal to her, too. That's why you're throwing the ball, right? To find a bride? You know, I've never been to ball before. In fact, I haven't been to many parties since I joined the army. No time for fun when you've got training to do.” No time for fun when you've got something to prove, either. Her family was particularly adamant about her not becoming a soldier. They were more serious about women not joining the army than most of her comrades. At least her fellow soldiers gave in once she proved she could fight. Her family is still steadfast against it.

“You're going to make all of some seamstress or tavern wench's dreams come true. Almost every little girl in the world has dreamed about some prince...well, king, in this case...sweeping them off their feet and carrying them off to live a life of grandeur.” Except her. She preferred her feet firmly on the ground. “You know, you made my dream come true, but I was the one who literally swept your feet out from under you.” She giggled a little from the memory.




Kala


“So…If we now do have some crops that we can refrain from… What will we get for doing so? You forgot to mention what your people will offer in exchange...”

'Idiot,' she heard Lnoli say in her head.

'I was getting to it,' she thought back at him.

She fought back the eager smile at the possibility that trade would go through, and instead kept her face neutral. “We brought an assortment of rugs, hides, and clothing. Rugs for decoration, clothing for...well, not running around naked. Now, hides are the most valuable, because you can turn the leather into furniture, more clothes, whatever strikes your fancy.”

On the ground, Lnoli yawned and jumped up onto a chair that was probably where she was supposed to sit. He sat up on it and gave her look that she knew to be smug. 'Being a merchant is not your calling. So much for being clever enough to sell flint to a fire triber.'

She sent a glare his way, then turned her attention back to Cailu. “And this could just the first step in establishing regular trade between our tribes. And with regular trade comes good relations, and potentially an alliance. I think if we come together, both of our tribes would be stronger for it.” Even as she said the words, she wondered how the Chief would take the proposal she offered them without consulting him first, but she decided to cross that bridge when she got there.

A thought suddenly occurred to her, and she smiled. “And I could offer my own services, as well. You see, I'm a shaman, so I know a few rituals that could...tip the balance. I can help get revenge on your enemies, help your sick get back on their feet. I even know a ritual that can help a woman choose the gender of their unborn child. Now, I'll be the first to admit that the rituals don't work one-hundred percent of the time, but I have a reputation in my tribe as someone who can get things done.”

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Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed


"Well, you are just too smart for me, you caught me red handed...or blue handed in this case."

General Zaheed could do nothing but watch as his sword melt to pieces, he was fast, and speed was not necessarily something Zaheed had on his side. No, he was a man of strength instead. Though Zaheed did have his way with fire, his signature move was to form shields and barricades of fire to protect him, thus the reason why he never carried a shield with, him, for he already equipped himself with one through the infernos flamed in his veins.

"That's better. But seriously, no I did not stay on the road long enough to hear whatever was said. I was tired and wanted to find rest in the Water tribe. So you can just back off old man!"

With each strike Bellistrad threw, Zaheed blocked, though when the balls of fire were hurled Zaheed dodged madly. Zaheed was not any general, he was general of the fire tribe, a people of war and bloodshed. And each day, when he once strived to gain his father's favor, Zaheed would drain all energy if it meant any training could please Zarfu. But as Bellistrad was striking again Zaheed gripped his wrist, swung in with an elbow to the opposite shoulder possibly popping it out of place or at least inflicting sufferable pain to the arm. But soon after the elbow strike Zaheed swept his other hand right around his neck, and when tight enough he used the other hand. Now with both hands fastened around the neck, causing dark noticeable bruises; Zaheed lifted Bellistrad off the ground revealing his immense strength.

"Old man?" he barked in question. "Funny, the eldest is called to the throne." After the comment there appeared to be a moment of glares and grimaces, Zaheed had Bellistrad in a position where the young man stared directing into the eyes of a beast. The amount of pressure Zaheed weighed against his neck was as if he was pounded all his bottled emotions and burdens onto him. But Zaheed knew he still had to be careful on not letting his flames pull out though he was putting his muscles under stress and strain. When Zaheed sensed Bellistrad was tapping out of consciousness, Zaheed dropped the boy. He knew he couldn't risk killing him nor knocking him out. When on the floor Zaheed put his foot against Bellistrad's cheek not crushing him but showing a symbol of dominance. Zaheed leaned over closer to Bellistrad to spit against his face, "Did you really think you had a chance? But like I said, I'm not going to kill. I'm going to use you, refuse and I give you slow and painful death, understand? You like travel? How about you be my little scout, ever heard of shapeshifters, I want to know if they are real, and your going to find out. And don't worry I have my eye on you, so don't even think about tattling on me." Zaheed whistled for Icarus whom perched against his shoulder first and then glided to Bellistrad and stood on Zaheed's foot against Bellistrad's face. "Icarus, my raven, special bird, will report to me on your progress, you like traveling, yes? It couldn't possible be that unmanageable of a task, yes?"

Zaheed moved his foot off of Bellistrad and headed back to his steed, "Now, be a good boy. I would hate to pay you another visit." Zaheed climbed onto his horse, "Count yourself lucky, Bellistrad." And with that Zaheed rode off as if nothing happened, but he had been awaiting for the day of the ball and soon the day he became king.

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Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bellistrad's attack came swift and many, but he could not help but fall victim to the general's greater experience. He could not quite comprehend what had happened until after he was already on the ground, but he remembered a hand grasping his forearm and a sharp pain in his left shoulder. He was not sure but he thought his left upper arm bone was cracked down it's length. Now face down on the ground again Bellistrad could not move or speak as the pain was too much for him to bare, his chakra's becoming unfocused. He would have to align them later if he survived.

He could only hear part of Zaheed's words but he understood what he wanted him to do. Why shapeshifters, he thought. What part did they play in Zaheed's plans? He did not get another chance to think on it as Icarus landed near his face and stared at him like the bird thought Bellistrad's eyeball looked edible. When Zaheed departed Bellistrad began to assess the damage one body part at a time, making himself extremely aware of each part in turn so he could feel them without having to move.

Only his left arm seemed like it took any lasting damage. Eventually he could handle the pain and sat up then dragged himself to the nearest tree. Luckily that tree was the one with his pack still hanging from it, so Bellistrad cut the branch with a jet of flame an caught his pack as it fell. Taking out a blue crystal hookah from his pack Bellistrad placed some marijuana and powdered poppy seeds into the top portion of the hookah and incinerated the bundle with his flames, inhaling the entire amount of smoke through the water in the hookah and into his lungs.

The two mixed anti-pain herbs helped numb Bellistrad as he took a couple of sticks and a torn shirt out of his pack and made a splint and sling for his arm. It was makeshift but it would have to do. Slowly standing up Bellistrad slung his pack over his right arm and began his journey anew as if he had not just been brutalized. He still felt the bruises on his neck from Zaheed's man-handling and it would take awhile for them to fully disappear but he accepted their presence and switched his thoughts to more important things, like how he was supposed to find the shapeshifters before Zaheed decided he no longer needed Bellistrad anymore.

He decided that he might as well continue on his set course and head for the earth tribe, as it was his destination before the attack an he could search for rumors about the shape shifters there as well, plus get some rest for his injured arm. "Well, this has turned out to be quite the adventure already." Bellistrad has already left the battle ground behind as he motivates himself forward towards whatever destiny has in store for him.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Lord Vinicius


“As much as I would like to stay, I think I need to show them in person that my head is still attached to my body. Can I have permission to leave and stop a horde of overly dramatic mourners?”

"Um-- Yes, yes, sorry about wasting your time," he apologized that the conversation carried longer than usual. But talk was good for Vinicius, since the death of his father her has been wallowing in solitude and loneliness. One reason perhaps why he had forgotten how much time he was spending to speak to her may have been because he was enjoying another person's presence.

Speaking of the company of others, soon the night of the ball arrived, and the day before preparations were made. Not only for Lord Vinicius, but also the general made his own plans and successfully smuggled and delivered to Zianro the promised armor of the palace guards. Of course the general did not bring the goods himself, but instead hired a merchant boy, and by hired, he actually made death threats against his family, and Zaheed has the reputation to be the person you don't want to mess with. But in the end, when the young man finished the job Zaheed swipe a blade through the boy's back and threw corpse to a pack of wolves to which it appeared he had been attacked by the ways of nature. Zaheed knew he could not risk anyone knowing of his dealings, he was tempted to do the same to Bellistrad, kill him of some sort, but what convincing words could an exile hold? None.

Vinicius was now in his room where he prepared himself for the ball, he had already bathed in water anointed with the riches and finest perfumes, combed his hair- which he rarely does, and dressed himself in truly charming royal garments made of the wealthiest of fabrics. It was tight, not the most necessarily comfortable outfit he could of worn, but it was pleasing to the eye, attractive. Besides, balls are to be fancy, right?

Well, not this one, once the party spun into action it was full of life, laughter, excitement. But not full of clothing, no most of the women were loosely cladded, however covered with unique designs of war paint. Vinicius understood that the meaning of the ball was for the king to pick a woman, and by them exposing their bodies was to show the most attractive or also to reveal the stronger women, the ones with scars- a body says a lot about a person. But Vincius was not into that, and it was a bit nerving that his mother planned but he understood that in history kings have thrown these types of gatherings, she was only following tradition. But then it clicked to Vinicius, how could she had planned all of this, wasn't she too sick to do mostly anything. And she didn't she say that Zaheed would give him any further details.

"Baby brother!" Zaheed called as he was in the dinning room, where most of the partying happening, as he watched girls dance to the beat of the drums as he had his arm around another whispering flirts to her ear. Zaheed didn't even act like he was married, like he had a wife and children. He has tried his best to keep talk about him having affairs with other women secret, but now he didn't care if his wife left him anymore, in fact he wanted that, so it would only be him who ruled the throne. In the past he forced his wife to never leave him because he wanted the power over her, but now he didn't want to rule with her. He wasn't going kill her though, Zaheed was just going to finally give her the freedom. He was a disgusting despicable man, a snake. Zaheed stood up and walked to his brother with a tankard in his hand. "Ha! You look adorable, but terribly out of style tonight." Zaheed also blended with everyone else, no shirt, war paint. "Sorry for not informing you, but I have just been so busy with plans for tonight." Actually Zaheed more over planned the entire ball for his own taste and pleasures.

"Zaheed, I... um.. well... Wished that--" Vinicius started.

"Come one! You have to admit this is thrilling! Grab a drink and party!" And there was no doubt, even the soldiers partied. Zaheed handed the cup over to Vinicius to where he took it and sipped, until he spotted Sholeh. Vinicius gave the tankard back to his brother and approached Sholeh. He wanted to talk to her, because out of any girl in the ball he wanted to see her because meeting new people was always something that gave Vinicius anxiety, but because he has already met her, he thought he would not be as nervous.

"Kanaka, or should I say Captain Kanaka," Vinicius greeted her, but it was quite loud, Vinicius preferred his eardrums not be busted so he suggested, "How about we go to the garden? Its too loud in here."

Finally when they were in the garden, Vinicius smiled, he was in a better mood now outside, away from the crowds. You say he was comfortable. "Believe me, I didn't plan the gathering, or I wouldn't be so out of style. It was my brother. Besides, like I said, parties aren't my thing... But this isn't about me, well actually this all is made kind of, actually for me, not that I want it to be-- but what I'm trying to say, or more like ask. Is how have you been since the promotion? I'm glad that you said I made your dream come true. That's what I do, well I had to, you deserved it." Vinicius paused and then continued, "I know there's something special about you."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Lord Vinicius



“Well, I agree I'm one-of-a-kind. Usually its a bad thing, but sometimes its a good thing. Like getting this promotion. Which has been great! The other soldiers, and even regular people actually treat me with respect now. Thank you. For this.”

Promotions, Vinicius was glad that Sholeh liked hers, sadly being king was not such a great promotion for him, knowing that the man that once took his place, his father, is dead. But Vinicius noticed what drove him away from the grief and mourning of the lost was helping others, and Sholeh has shown him that. The way she rejoiced with joy, it made Vinicius want to help others, really to the point that he forgot about the whole you-killed-my-father-now-I'm-going-to-kill-you thing.

“I know you said you don't like parties, but...isn't the whole point of this ball is for you to mingle with the ladies and find a wife. Its going to hard to do that if you're here talking to me.”

Vinicius gave a nervous chuckle, "Actually, I never really talked to a girl. Well, I'm talking to you now, but your about the only person outside of my family. Well, I have spoken to other females like maids, cooks, noble women, but not young girls, well, around my age. Its just that, when my father was still alive, I was a little boy, always my father's shadow. But he never seemed disappointed that I didn't grow up and become a man. I wonder if he ever was though, but just didn't tell me." Vinicius looked down gloomily but shook his head, "But I'm going to do my best not to be angry or sad tonight, I think too much about his murder, it must make me seem moody and emotional. I'm going to have to do better at hiding that, because don't women want strong charming men, not a man on the impulse of his feelings. I don't know, I'm afraid if I approach any lady that I will faint out of anxiety." Vinicius gazed into Sholeh's hazel eyes, "But you, your not like the other girls. I feel... comfortable. Even though when we first met you put me exactly out of my comfort zone. Its probably because you have a love for this nation as do I. And I believe it is the ones fighting for this tribe that love it the most. No matter what happens to me I will always have the heart of a soldier, even when I wear ancient bracers and a flashy crown.

Oh and besides, I think this ball was really for Zaheed because he planned it due to the fact that my mother is--," Vinicius stopped, he remembered that he had not yet spoken to her, he wanted to check up on Ivana before the ball. "Listen, I will be back, I just have to go check up on the queen. I'll be back though." Vinicius was always a family man, loved every single family member, but that love could be seen as a weakness when he is too blind to believe the evil behind his older brother. Vinicius turned walk away from Sholeh, but once the darkness he felt a bag fall over his face, he tried blazing fire from his palm but he felt water gush into his hand, pouring like a waterfall, Vinicius immediately suspected water bender. But eventually he could not suspect anything when unconscious. And he could not possible fight back and be victorious with no sight, dying powers, and striking pain directed to the head.

But Vinicius awoke, but not in a pleasant destination nor position. His wrist and arms were stretched up as they were cuffed with a chain attached to the ceiling. And his ankles shackled to the ground. However Vinicius could not even melt the metal of the shackles, the cuffs were surrounded by ice. So the lord was thinking fast and decided to blow fire from his throat and through his mouth to melt the ice, but as he did a bucket from the ceiling was pulled by some lever to drop water against him. No, Vinicius knew not only was he completely stuck, but completely vulnerable. He no longer had his fancy ball garments, no he was stripped down to nothing but a loin cloth, however what angered him the most was that he didn't have his bracers, for generations kings have worn those ancient arm bracers, his father wore those.

Vinicius was furious he could only give a fierce roar.




General Zaheed



It had been quite awhile since Zaheed had seen the lord, well the use-to-be lord. But it was not like Zaheed was looking for his brother, he knew exactly where Vinicius was, a special little place, the exact place Zaheed wanted him to be in. But oh, all of this was part of his selfish power-hungry plan, because luckily Vinicius was last seen was Sholeh Kanaka, which made things like blaming someone, easy for Zaheed. He had already sent the front palace guards, the real one, out to search for Vinicius, but gone, but like he wanted. "I know exactly who did this!" Zaheed announced as he stormed to Sholeh.

When finding the woman he clutched her wrist, dragged her to the throne room, another place consumed with crowds, and threw her to the ground, his sword unleashed. "Lord Vinicius is missing all thanks to this bitch! Yes, he was last seen with her!" Every soul in the palace either turned around or gathered to the room to witness the situation as soon as they heard Zaheed loud and booming voice. Palace guards pushed through the people to surround Sholeh. "First my father killed, now my brother kidnapped! I suspect she's a spy working with those who murdered our great King Zarfu! It all makes sense, you're soldier and you must of been informed about our troops' encampment and spread news to the spies, to have my father killed! She is the reason for his death and perhaps soon she will be responsible for Vinicius's death!"

The crowd was shock, angry and indignant towards Sholeh, but you couldn't blame them Zaheed was putting on a good show. But this show may cost Sholeh's life.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Kalagisa
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Sholeh Kanaka


"But you, your not like the other girls. I feel... comfortable. Even though when we first met you put me exactly out of my comfort zone. Its probably because you have a love for this nation as do I. And I believe it is the ones fighting for this tribe that love it the most. No matter what happens to me I will always have the heart of a soldier, even when I wear ancient bracers and a flashy crown.”

Sholeh smiled. “Well, I feel pretty comfortable with you, too. You're not as intimating as I thought you'd be.”

”Oh and besides, I think this ball was really for Zaheed because he planned it due to the fact that my mother is--Listen, I will be back, I just have to go check up on the queen. I'll be back though."

“It's fine. I completely understand,” she said, truthfully. If her own mother was sick, she'd be going crazy with worry, too.

After he left, she took a few steps and leaned against a statue, almost knocking it down when she was startled by a voice. “What are you doing?” The voice was distinctly Serafina's.

Sholeh righted herself, and shot her sister a glare. “Don't sneak up in me like that. And what do you mean what am I doing? Aren't you supposed to be consorting with your male harem?”

Serafina walked over to her with an amused expression on her face. “I needed a break. And I meant what are you doing always spending alone time with the king?”

Sholeh rolled her eyes. “I'd hardly call twice 'always', Miss Drama. And I know where your dirty mind is going, but don't even think about it.”

Her sister opened her mouth to say more, when they were interrupted by Kieran. He ran over to them with a look of panic on his face. “The king is missing!”

Sholeh just stared at him with a look of disbelief. “That's impossible! I was talking to him not too long ago.”

“Well-,” Kieran started, but was interrupted when General Zaheed barreled through, and dragged Sholeh by the wrist.

“What are you doing?” she demanded as he pulled her into the crowded throne room. He threw her to the ground and unsheathed his sword.

"Lord Vinicius is missing all thanks to this bitch! Yes, he was last seen with her!"

Sholeh was struck speechless by the horrible accusation. She barely noticed the guards surrounding her.

"First my father killed, now my brother kidnapped! I suspect she's a spy working with those who murdered our great King Zarfu! It all makes sense, you're soldier and you must of been informed about our troops' encampment and spread news to the spies, to have my father killed! She is the reason for his death and perhaps soon she will be responsible for Vinicius's death!"

Finally finding her voice, she pleaded, “No, it wasn't me! I have no reason to do any of that! I am completely loyal to the fire tribe, my home is everything to me!”




Kala


“Oh, we do have some empty rooms in here and I could probably ask our local tavern if they could lend you the rooms they offer as well, you don’t need to set camp outside. You’ve shown that you are here as friends and not foes so you are more than welcome to explore Airedale and what we have to offer. When you want to dine just say that you are visitors of Ara and myself, you don’t have to worry about paying for anything. It’s the least we can do when you show such hospitality as taking Ara with you and treating her.”

“My thanks,” Kala said, rising from the chair and putting Lnoli back on her shoulders. “With your permission, I'll take my leave to tell my tribesmen the good news about our accomplished mission. And about our new traveling companion.” She gave a respectful nod to him as she passed.

When she came upon her fellow tribesmen, she opened her arms wide and grinned. “Mission accomplished! We're getting the supplies!”

“They're trading with us?” one asked excitedly.

“Yes!” Kala said. “And we're taking the leader's cousin back with us and healing her!”

There was silence for a few moments, then one said, “We have to drag along an invalid with us?”

Kala glared at him. “No, we're taking the daughter of the former leader with us. And we will all be as welcoming as we can possibly be, or risk making an enemy out of the air tribe.”

There was still some grumbling, but Kala ignored it. “And we can stay in the village and eat their food.”

“No thanks, we're staying right here,” one of the warriors said.

Kala's jaw dropped in shock. “Why? You're going to be rude if you turn down their hospitality.”

The same warrior continued speaking. “If all ten of us go in that village, we'll cause a ruckus. You go ahead. We'll stay out here and sleep on the ground like we're used to doing.”

Frustrated, Kala sighed and walked back to the village alone. This time several of the villagers seemed to accept her presence, so she got a few nods as she passed by them. She even waved to a young child, who smiled shyly in return.

When she got to the building that she assumed was the tavern, she went inside and addressed the woman who looked like she was running the place. “Do you have a room available?”

The woman looked at her for a few moments, then said. “I take it your our new visitor?”

Kala smiled widely. “How'd you guess?”

“I took a wild stab in the dark.” She glanced at Lnoli perched on Kala's shoulders. “Is that animal going to be in the room, too?”

Kala patted the fox on the head. “He'll be a perfect gentleman.”

Setting

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Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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General Zaheed



“No, it wasn't me! I have no reason to do any of that! I am completely loyal to the fire tribe, my home is everything to me!”

General Zaheed let Sholeh speak, he had words to says, why not give Sholeh hers, especially due to someone which such pride, Zaheed suspected her to say something stupid or something he could twist, putting words into her mouth. However when she did finish Zaheed shouted with his fingers curled clenched to the grip of his sword, "Shut up!" He tried to form his face as tense as possible with each vein popping and muscle strained. If Zaheed was not the son of a king, he truly could of been a master actor. Zaheed approached Sholeh closer with one hand grabbing the back of her neck and the other lunging the blade closely to her neck however not touching it. "You have no proof! But I do. Not only were you last seen with him, but on his coronation you stubbornly assaulted him even when he refused to fight back. If you didn't want to hurt him you would have listened to that order. But no, now my brother- my blood is missing because of you! But," he paused, and then continued tossing his blade asunder with his other hand free grabbing her, both hands against it.

And just as he lifted Bellistrad from the ground he lifted Sholeh, it was his move, it displayed his immense strength, especially now because he is without shirt but with muscle bulging and flexed. When Zaheed rose with such slow drama, he appeared to rising as if he was a god. And realistically, he believed now he had that chance to be one with his brother missing. Zaheed squeezed her neck also hard enough bruises wore on, he did so she would not have the ability to choke a word out, but he made sure Sholeh would not die, no he has not yet decided with himself to kill her. But Zaheed truly was a snake, a Boa Constrictor, because not only does he choke his opponents physically with pleasure, but emotionally. To Zotar he slithered and crawl his way to his brother's neck, and at the right moment he wrapped his body around his neck, now to leave him in the dark loneliness away from his dying mother and beloved country. Zaheed knew Zotar had a strong love for both family and country, perhaps before Zianro could every sell him, Zotar would rid his soul from body to escape the solitude. Even before the kidnapping Zotar was disturbed by the lost and traumatic experience of losing his father, now how must he feel believing he has lost them all, as if they all were murdered before his eyes. "I will not be so mercifully to end you with a quick death, vengeance must be acquired, and anyone knows revenge is always served cold. And 'cold' will be taken literally to you, a liar and traitor!"

The General slung Sholeh to the ground, turning the palace guard, "Bind her, with chains against the wrist and ankles upside down, only allowing her desperate moments right side up to prevent death. If she tries escaping, report to me immediately." Did Zaheed feel sorry for Sholeh, accusing her, even torturing her for a crime of his own, no not at all. He knew he had to make her suffer, it would be something he would do if someone put his brother in harm, if he even had an ounce of love for his brother.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Ara Cilivren Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Kalagisa
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Sholeh Kanaka


"Shut up! You have no proof! But I do. Not only were you last seen with him, but on his coronation you stubbornly assaulted him even when he refused to fight back. If you didn't want to hurt him you would have listened to that order. But no, now my brother- my blood is missing because of you! But, I will not be so mercifully to end you with a quick death, vengeance must be acquired, and anyone knows revenge is always served cold. And 'cold' will be taken literally to you, a liar and traitor!

Unable to say a word because her throat was being constricted, Sholeh could only make a gurgling sound for her protests. The horror that was happening to her caused her brain to shut and she had a hard time thinking straight. This type of terror was new to her, even when she thought she was going to be executed, she experienced more of a numb fear. Finally, the general flung her to the floor.

“Bind her, with chains against the wrist and ankles upside down, only allowing her desperate moments right side up to prevent death. If she tries escaping, report to me immediately."

Sholeh could do nothing as she was put to chains and dragged away from the palace. Her mind went completely blank, and she went into a daze as they walked. She went into a little bit of denial, and insisted in her mind that this couldn't possibly be happening, that this was just a nightmare and she would soon wake up in the barracks like every other morning. But she never woke up, and they arrived at their destination.

In front of her stood a great frozen lake, with faint lights twinkling in the distance, probably a village or city. She knew immediately where she was. Lakeshore, enemy territory. Her heart jumped in her chest when she realized she was being exiled, to the enemy, no less, who would most likely kill her on sight. She was unchained by the guards, and they roughly pushed her forward onto the ice.

When she was told to cross the frozen lake, and realizing she was outnumbered, she said nothing, just gave a defiant glare. She squared her shoulders, then strode onto the lake as if she had the slightest confidence. In reality, she had none. Since the water tribe was her enemy, she had always carried a fear of it, and had never learned to swim. Which meant that if she fell through the ice, she was a goner.

She stepped very carefully as she walked across the lake, making sure to distribute her weight evenly with each step and looking out for thin ice. The wind was so harsh that it almost threw her off balance a few times, but the low temperature of it barely registered with her, as she was naturally very hot-blooded, and did not get cold easily. The hanging beads from her ball outfit banging against her body like she was being whipped, however, drove her insane, and almost ripped them off several times.

Finally, after what felt like the longest, hardest walk in her life, she could see the edge. Immensely relieved, she picked up her pace so it would be over with faster, when she felt her foot go through the ice, and was underwater to her ankle. She screamed and tried to pull her foot out, but only managed to trip. When she fell down, the impact broke more of the ice, and she went completely underwater.

Sholeh struggled, and tried to kick her to get to the opening, but she just seemed to go deeper and deeper. After a short amount of time, she felt her vision blurring, and soon everything went black. The last thing she was aware of before she passed out was strong hands gripping her arms.




Kala


Kala spent the whole rest of the day outdoors exploring the village and talking to the people. Many of them were interested in her culture, especially about the animals. They were very interested in Lnoli as they had never encountered such an intelligent animal. A few of the children expressed their desire to have one too, which caused a discussion among them over what their spirit animal would be. At dinner time at the inn, there was even a small crowd that wanted to listen to more stories from the foreigner. When it was time for her to go to bed, she tried to sleep in the soft bed, but she was so uncomfortable that she eventually laid down on the floor like she was used to doing, and went to sleep. Lnoli didn't seem to mind, however, as he slept through the whole night curled up on the bed.

When morning came, she was up bright and early like every day, and happily ate breakfast before running out to where the warriors were camped, and she helped them deliver the hides, rugs, and clothing to the village. Well, not physically help, more like directed them on exactly what to do and how to do it. She sighed as she lead the warriors through the village. Looking around, she knew that she would soon be leaving her small piece of independence from the tribe behind.

'Don't be sad,' Lnoli, who in a rare moment was actually by himself beside her. 'After you deliver the woman back here, you can just keep going.'

Kala perked up a little bit at that. 'Yes,' she said back to him. 'Maybe the Spirits will favor her and she will get well soon.'

She went looking for Cailu and when she found him, she said, “We brought the supplies. Just direct my tribesmen on where to put them, and tell them where the food supplies are so they can pack them up. After that, we're ready when your cousin is. Also, they made a sling out of wood and leaves for her to use for her own comfort. The warriors will have no issue carrying her throughout the journey.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Lord Vinicius



And finally, in the midst of Vinicius's cries, he heard a voice, "There is no need for your yells, no one will hear you from where we are, Vinicius, or can I still call you Zotar?" Vinicius lifted his head up to lay his eyes on Zianro Azura, the king of the water tribe, or formally known as, The Wandering River Dragon. As soon as Vinicius recognized the face, he felt his heart sink to the floor, the regret to be blinded, only focusing on the earth tribe, crushed Vinicius. All he wanted was to make his father proud, and over his own older brother, Zarfu chose Vinicius, and he never wished to shrink from that duty nor be in the hands of his enemies due to the failure. However now, that is exactly what has happened.

"You know who I am, and by consequence where you are and how you got here. But if you're willing to hear me out I can explain the one question remaining out of the four, Why. Why, why is such a complicated word. Whys are existent everywhere, like why did our forefathers come to Imos if to escape persecution alone. Why do our four sides argue, and so on. But we are focusing on why you are here."

Zianro was right, why was a significant word, and even further as Zianro also said, why Vinicius is here. Yes Vinicius was eager to have that question answered, but he was not desperate enough to break, well at least not yet. One reason that Vinicius could perhaps purpose of why he remains a prisoner to the water king, is an obvious one, Vinicius was blind-sided, he should of been more aware of the water tribe. But no, instead Vinicius feared what happened was that he concreted on the earth tribe, and was fixed on acting against them after the ball.

"The answer I will speak is the truth no matter how hard you deny it. If you refuse to listen then so be it, but it will make your stay a lot more uncomfortable. Someone within your family wanted what you had, and now lost. Someone with hungry ambition, he came to me with promises of leaving me alone if I did this favor for him."

So, it was clear who Zianro meant by the someone, and it was not Vinicius's younger brother, no, it was definitely Zaheed. But did Vinicius believe him for one moment, no, not a bit. Vinicius always entrusted his family, his own people over logic, or common sense for that matter. Vinicius was annoyed by hearing this come from Zianro, he would be passionately furious if he was in better state of mind, not being shackled with chains and branded with ice against wrists and ankles. This weak, it would take a lot more to truly kindle this inferno in the cold blizzard.

"But what I didn't expect, according to my spies, was that he would fly off the handle immediately and blame that red headed vixen. Who knows what he'll do to her-" Was it believable that Zaheed would accuse Sholeh for his absence, yes, but Vinicius would not be mad at his brother if he found out that was true, because he expected Zaheed not to know any better. But now was he tipping over the level of being annoyed to anger, yes. He would clench his fist at this moment but with the ice around his wrists, he lost feeling in his hands, as if when he first woke up seeing the blocks of ice he felt the sensation of his hands being sawed off his arms, thus one reason why he cried in a roar. So instead, Vinicius frowned with his teeth showing, giving an ugly scowl. "-ah ah ah. Watch your temper or another load of water will drench you." Every time he felt the down pour of the icy cold water, the closest visual of what Vinicius felt was electrocution threading through his spine leading out through the rest of the parts through his body with piercing thorns hooking into the flesh.

"If you want what is yours back, you need only ask and we will conspire to rid of our mutual problem, and hopefully achieve a peace between us. So what do you say...Zotar? Will your stay be comfortable," Vinicius closed his eyes, he imagined light, he loved the light, fire gave that light, it had a glow of warmth against it. The darkness was cold cruel, something he feared would sacrifice his sanity if he remained it, his mentality poured down the drain the way the water from the buckets clashed against his skin. He could have that light if he cooperated with his enemy. "or uncomfortable?" Vinicius opened his eyes and turned his head up to stare at the large buckets that over filled with water, he could quiver now just imagining the excruciating pain if he were to refuse the offer.

"Either way doesn't matter to me as I will have what I want in the end. Now make a choice."

Vinicius directed his head to the ground, turned away from Zianro as he was thinking. What if he did cooperate with Zianro, maybe he would shortly let Vinicius after then, Vinicius would be able to see his mother, but what son could he be, what worth is it for him to ever come to her, having the nerve to show his face when in the end he surrendered himself to his enemies.

So finally, not even giving Zianro any eye contact, and ignoring his question, Vinicius decided to ask his own question, "Are you the reason why my father is dead?"




General Zaheed



Zaheed approached the frozen lake with Sholeh in captivity, bound with chains, when they reached their destination Sholeh was released from her cage, where Zaheed gripped her arm, roughly towing her to the frozen body of water, he kept a dagger to her neck, just in case she had any thought to fight back. "This time you will die, and Zotar is no longer here to proclaim it a joke, all thanks to you." Zaheed, lowered the dagger, in order to throw her to the lake, "Have a nice dip, captain!"

Then the walk began, she tried keeping tings slow and steady at first, Zaheed could tell, he studied her every moment, watching closely with intent and full attention. But soon she decided to pick up her pace, causing a foot to be swallowed by the ice, thus the same happening to the foot, until she sunk deep into the water. The lake had eaten her alive. Zaheed could not help but smiled, because at that moment he could already feel the metal of the throne as he had dreamt years and years of sitting on it. And that girl, Sholeh, gave him the belief and reassurance that she sealed his future as king.

Zaheed climbed onto Shadow, where he held the reins of the horse saying to his men, "Coronation begins immediately."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sholeh Kanaka Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos
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Bellistrad Indorial

A large jet of steam rose out of the frozen lake, and with it came Sholeh and Bellistrad. The exile's blue flames had flash evaporated the water as he had grabbed hold of Sholeh. While he laid down on his back against the ice with Sholeh next to him he caught his breath from the large exertion of energy and wondered why he was even at Lakeshore in the first place. The answer was simple, a dream had shown him the lake while he was in Shadowfen and had sent him on horseback to Lakeshore as fast as he could ride. He hadnt even know someone was in trouble until he noticed Zaheed and some fire soldiers send one of their own out on the lake to die.

Bellistrad had waited until Zaheed had left to sneak out onto the ice and save the girl, who he assumed was now an exile just like he was. Fate, it seemed, had a sense of humor. Now slowly getting onto his knees as not to break the ice, he dragged Sholeh's unconcious form towards the shore where his horse was waiting and slung her over the back of it. "You are one lucky girl, you know that?" Taking the reins Bellistrad walked with the horse towards Lakeshore.

A friend of Bellistrad's gave him a house to rent for free, no questions asked. If they had known he had a fire tribe exile he was sure they would not have been so kind. He snuck her in the house and got her out of her clothes before she caught hypothermia, got her into a bed and covered her up in sheets. He warmed her with some of his energy before retiring into the next room to smoke a little out of his hookah and drink some tea to warm himself. The entire experience was nerve wracking for him, as it had been awhile since he had used that much energy at once. But he stayed awake until he heard movement in the room and made a second cup of tea for the girl, then went in to introduce himself.

Smiling at the girl as she was awake, he set the tea cup and saucer down next to the bed and did a low bow. "Hey, glad to see you are up. I am Bellistrad Indorial. Do not worry, I am a fire tribe exile like you are. Just dont tell anyone, and I wont either." He winks and sits in a chair near the bed."So, you must have a few questions. Shoot away."

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General King Zaheed


In summary the coronation was a grim ceremony, not only had the fire tribe lost their king less than two weeks ago, but also Zotar. There seemed to be such promise in Lord Vinicius also, citizens imagined the former king to purpose to his chosen wife, the two to have a legendary royal wedding, and for Vinicius to seek out and defeat his father's killer, sending his enemies a message of why they call him Vinicius. But no, things are not nearly as glorious or as bright as they seem out to be unfortunately. And even now, at any moment the queen too could be the next to make an exit.

But during Zaheed's crowning he spoke in term of I rather than we. Thus he acknowledge his power and not the power of the nation, of as a people. And the reason for this being that Zaheed did not find a connection to him and fire tribe, because he lacked a connection with his father. Thus Zaheed came to the conclusion, if he could not trust his father, a man whose life revolved around the fire tribe, neither is Zaheed going to trust his homeland. Yes Zaheed was not even attached either to the tribe, and it was ironic that the first king to never harness the traditional arm bracers was Zaheed, for Vinicius was captured with the armor piece still on him. Those bracers were branded into a new king on the day of his coronation, it symbolized his bond with his people, it linked the two together. But funny thing the first man torn from that symbol was Zaheed, a man who cares not for his own country, and rather for his own lust of power. And what felt the best about that day was that Zaheed put an end to General Zaheed, no now he was King Zaheed.

And on the topic of power, the next day later Zaheed did not even take a break from work to mediate and decide what the best move for the kingdom is, nor did he once check up on his mother. No Zaheed was always a straight down to business type of person. And because he was also a man with a plan, he summoned the kingdom's mages, claiming that he wished to increase the arcane wisdom of the tribe, when in honesty Zaheed was doing what most would title insane. Yes, Zaheed wanted more power, he did not want to bear just fire, no he hungered for more than one element. But the issue with that is, Zaheed never had any great knowledge about magic, thus he needed the perfect weapon and tool to manage a task.

Zaheed was in a room full of mages, but not as enough people as one with think, for Zaheed narrowed down the selection of who would prove to be his sidekick. And the contestants, were women, not only because Zaheed delighted in women in general, but felt that he would work better than one, because Zaheed felt that he could be more dominant verses a female simply because he is a man. It was wrong, but Zaheed had always seen men superior to women. And also because Zaheed always suspected females are easier to talk to, that it was more of a likely chance that if he were to have a henchman, then Zaheed may have to deal with male with the attitude of being an alpha figure. And Zaheed was not going to waste time to deal with such defiance. Zaheed does not have a problem with his sidekick being a dominant bold figure, just as long as they know who is above them.

But finally Zaheed was put in a room where the lasting mages would basically audition to why Zaheed should hire them as his "magical adviser", things were going just decently but also boringly until someone of interest walked in. Sure she was an attractive woman, but looks what not the highlight Zaheed was looking for, it was her magical ability instead...

"State your name and what is so special about you," he spoke with a stone face, in a chair and leaning forward with his hand cupped against his chin. Unlike kings n the past Zaheed did wear his crown, he liked the dominance, the looming spikes above his head that promoted his position.

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

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In the outskirts of Murtovaara, the great city, lied a district no one from the outside would want to visit. It was the poor district, a place where the shame of the tribe got collected. A place were children got abounded in the dirty orphanage and people got to live with strangers in the small rooms the district got to offer. It wasn't a place fitting for humans, it wasn't even a place where animals could live with dignity. In that dark and cramped place were some people lied on the streets since they didn't have anything to offer in return of a room, there lived Deborah Sigrún. A woman beneath most members of the tribe.

The woman in question had grown up in one of those orphanages and since she had never been able to leave it she was still stuck in that place. But still, it provided her a place to live as long as she paid a little attention to the children. No, she was no way near qualified for the job but there wasn't anyone that would want to take her place voluntarily either since no one wanted to get associated with the poor district.

Even though Deborah herself would want something else to do in life, she knew that she wasn't going to get hired anywhere. And it was not like she could start anything by herself either since she didn't have the money for something like that. She was stuck in the poor district with no chance of getting out of it, she could leave Murtovaara, but where would she go? At least she thought she was stuck in in that place, and even though she knew she was a good mage she hadn't known she was registered as one. She didn't even know she was registered at all since everyone from the sums where like the ghosts of the city. But one day she found one of the summons, one directed to her. It was the first time she had gotten called to anything at all and it did shock her at first. And it wasn't like she cared for the tribe or helping them learn more, the reason for her to agree to such an event was simply just to show how superior she was. Or rub it in the tribe’s face that she wasn't one of them and they dared to invite her either way.

When the day arrived and Deborah got to the prearranged location just to get more confused by what she found there. Of course she understood that there would be other mages there, but she had thought that there would be more men there because she found it a little bit strange thatt all mages were women. There must be men that focused their attention on their magic as well, but somehow they weren't there. And even though Deborah searched the place with her eyes as she stood in one of the corners awaiting her chance to flaunt she couldn't even see one male in the crowd. Not that she cared too much about it anyway, but it was a bit strange in her opinion.

When it was her turn she left the corner she had stood at, not because she was hiding but because she had no intention to get to know the others. And to avoid them trying to get to know her she rather withdrew than take up more space than needed. But as she left it, she held her head high and walked over to the room with determination.

"State your name and what is so special about you."

Perhaps it would be intimidating to stand in front of the king, but Deborah didn't care. The moment she stepped inside she looked at him as if it all were a challenge, and it somehow was, but not in the way that was intended. She wasn't competing with the other mages, she was provoking him and the tribe by showing up even though she wasn't one of them.

"I am Deborah Sigrún, and you won't find anyone more special than me," With the same look as before she held out her right hand towards him, "Let me demonstrate."

A small light started to glow in the middle of her palm, it grew and grew until it was bigger than her hand. The globe was so big that it looked to be so heavy that she would drop it, but it didn't weigh anything. And from being so big it shrink down again as she closed the hand but the burning heat still lingered in the room. "As you can see, I don't create fire like the rest of you. And I don't even want to do something as useless as that, I can create a light so violent that it would blind everyone around me for the rest of their life’s. I can melt things if I want to, but I don’t even need to fear for the whole city to burn to the ground in the process. As you may have understood, I’m not one of you, or half of me is. I’m a half blood, the other part of me has its roots in the Air tribe."

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

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General King Zaheed


"I am Deborah Sigrún, and you won't find anyone more special than me."

When Deborah spoke that first sentence was Zaheed surprised hearing that? Of course not, he has heard a handful of mages hold such claim on themselves. And usually what happened next was that the mage would precede to display their whimsical attributes of the fire element. But Zaheed was not interested in a mage who only had knowledge of fire magic, even if they knew every soul-existing secret of the power. No, Zaheed in the end was trying to increase the tribe's arcane wisdom, instead he wanted someone who was well informed on really all of the elements. Making it so much easy for himself to also be well-informed, but also well-trained.

"Let me demonstrate."

Zaheed did poke a smile and break his stone-face expression as soon as he watched a ball of light morph and forged from right out of her palm- seeing nothing like it. It even grew him more curious, knowing that fire, water, earth, and supposedly shape-shifting (if the rumors are true), are not the only elements out there. It was as if he found the golden goose, gleaming so brightly before his eyes. His promised amulet to glow beneath his neck contrived with the potential to present him godhood. Godhood, funny how he is finally king, he got he wanted and already, a day after his coronation and he ponders about what is above the stars.

"As you can see, I don't create fire like the rest of you. And I don't even want to do something as useless as that, I can create a light so violent that it would blind everyone around me for the rest of their life’s. I can melt things if I want to, but I don’t even need to fear for the whole city to burn to the ground in the process."

This one woman could burn cities! Zaheed was struggling and wrestling with himself inside to stay seated and not to jump among the room cheering as if he was a little girl has been gifted with her first pony. Someone like that proves dangerous, but if Zaheed could control her, then he proves dangerous- someone to be feared and even worshipped. Zaheed could burn cities.

"As you may have understood, I’m not one of you, or half of me is. I’m a half blood, the other part of me has its roots in the Air tribe."

Saying that she is a half-blood to the air tribe just was the icing on the cake. Because most likely if she was not a full-blood to tribe, perhaps she was not passionate about it either, which was good because it was not longer about the tribe, no Vinicius is long gone, the kingdom and nation was now going to be solely about King Zaheed, and if Deborah proves herself worthy to him, perhaps even she may have a share in his glory.

Zaheed laughed loudly as it echoed through the room, "You are truly a wonder, Deborah Sigrún. I laugh in rejoice to see I have found my mage, because like no other- you do not fail to impress. In fact, you do the impossible. And you my open my eyes to see there is elements beyond what we once knew." Zaheed rose from his chair as he used his hands as he spoke to emphasis his enthusiasm. "Just think of what we could be controlling right now. No longer will only the clouds conjure lighting from the gray skies. Or perhaps seasons could be manipulated by a single finger." Zaheed put one hand against her shoulder with his other hand outstretched in the air as if he was showing her the future of their power together as he painted Deborah his vision. "Even existing energy itself will bend and bow to our laws, our commands."

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A strange sound emerged inside the room, perhaps not strange to others but to Deborah it was an extremely odd type of sound. Of course Deborah had heard people laugh before and she knew what it was for, but she found it odd to emerge in a situation like this. And to make it all even more difficult to understand it was the king who was laughing and Deborah failed to see the fun in it all. She wanted to be dismissed, some harsh words that she wasn't fitting for the role since she wasn't pure, instead the king seemed to be pleased. Or at least amused.

So as he started to speak Deborah just stood there watching the man with a dead gaze, she wasn't that interested in hearing what he had to say. She guessed she would be dismissed anyway, so when he started his second sentence Deborah's mask dropped for a few seconds. Shocked by what she thought she had heard, praise? She started to believe that it all was a joke, that he would say that he hadn't meant any of it. Did he do so? No, instead he stood up and the wrinkle between Deborah's eyebrows just got bigger as she followed him with suspicious eyes.

"Just think of what we could be controlling right now. No longer will only the clouds conjure lighting from the gray skies. Or perhaps seasons could be manipulated by a single finger."

As the man made his way over to her she silently folded her arms, trying to stretch out her back even more. She would never sink so low that she would stand on the tip of her toes to look taller but she did her best to at least gain some more inches since the king was much taller when he stood up. Even though she could see that he was a large guy even when he was sitting down, the size did trouble her when he stood beside her. She didn't like it, she preferred him sitting down because then it was her who looked down upon him.

To have his hand on her shoulder didn't make Deborah less tens, instead she stiffened even more as he spoke, "Even existing energy itself will bend and bow to our laws, our commands."

"It's quite a extraordinary future you talk of, king. But are you sure you got the right person, because I have no intension to help the tribe extend their knowledge." As she spoke something else hit Deborah, if she now actually got the position, she would get paid. And since Deborah was someone that almost never had any money left for other things than actually basically surviving the look in her eyes looked, "But, let's just say that I were interested, what would I get? Payment, I mean."

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General King Zaheed


"It's quite a extraordinary future you talk of, king. But are you sure you got the right person, because I have no intension to help the tribe extend their knowledge."

Zaheed laughed again, but this time not as loud, "The tribe?" He laughed at himself really, surprised that he had not yet announced that he cared not for his own country, though he is screaming it aloud on the inside. But in the middle of the much quieter laughter he suddenly snapped into a twisted sinister expression and like spouting venom he said in a hiss, "I give not a rat's arse about these bastards." Zaheed did not say it loud enough for anyone to hear beyond the doors, but there was pride in his voice. Besides if she did supposedly tell anyone of what he had just said, he will only deny it all, put on his mask, and declare treason against her and eventually put her to death. Yes, it was all easy, he already did it once to Sholeh, he could do it again. And, sure she could control light, she was a powerful woman, but also was his brother, Zotar, but where is he now? Everyone has a weakness, Zaheed was crazy enough to believe he could break himself from that truth.

"But, let's just say that I were interested, what would I get? Payment, I mean."

Zaheed rotated his body sharply to her by taking a sheer turn on his heel, he chuckled, now he was laughing at her in the slightest of ways. "What is this? Some kind of deal?" No Zaheed was tired of making deals, he made a deal with Zianro, and that was it, Zaheed was not some kind of gambler. What do these people take me for my brother? Well of course, I wore my mask so well. They are not yet accustom my type of business.

Zaheed marched to Deborah he dragged his finger from her temple down her cheek until his hand edged off into her neck. Having someone like Zaheed close to your neck with his hands was not a good thing, he is a man known to suffocate his enemies to death he had already gave Sholeh and Bellistrad a taste of what he is capable of. Because whether or not Deborah was as interested as him, he was going to have her, if it was by her choice or not.

"You, my lady, are a precious jewel. And how could I let such a gorgeous gem slip from my fingers like so. No, I have to grasp it," Zaheed tightened his grip on Deborah but not to the point it hurt, only to show his aggression and even determine to have her. "But you want something, fair enough, we all want something. Though I am sure you want more than any mortal trinket, because money can only by so much, but in the great scheme of things... so little. And I rather settle for what is eternal, and I promise you, godhood is that of which I seek."

He was still holding her neck firm, but as said before not tight to the point of pain. But Zaheed also leaned into her ear whispering as he smile. "So tell me, do you want to be on the side of a god and with the benefits and... pleasures he will provide? And have all else mortals tremble at your voice, my dear precious jewel. That is your payment."

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Well wasn't the king an extremely happy person, or at least he seemed to be very easily amused. Having him laugh again didn't surprise Deborah as much the second time around, instead she just watched him carefully wondering what was supposed to be so funny. She soon found out what was, hearing his true emotion when it came to the tribe she couldn't help but grin a little. The fact that he didn't care the slightest about the tribe either did make her expectations of her rise a little, at least they had the same opinion when it came to that. And if his strive towards power would lead the tribe to suffering, she wouldn't mind watching it.

"What is this? Some kind of deal?"

Deborah slowly leaned forward, wondering what he was talking about. She had no intension to make any sort of deal, she just wanted to get something back if she now wasted her energy on his goals and ambitious. Nothing in life was free, but perhaps royalties couldn't know that since they already had everything. Well of course they couldn't understand how it was to have nothing and strive towards having at least something. And just as she was about to tell him that, that she didn't want any sort of deal but just payment like any other employee she lost the words with his sudden touch again. Not that it scared her, but it made her lose focus. Having his hand close itself around her neck though, that if anything did leave a small chill run down her spine. But her stubbornness forced her not to avert her eyes even the slightest. She was strong, she wasn't scared, king or not Deborah knew she could handle it if it went bad.

"You, my lady, are a precious jewel. And how could I let such a gorgeous gem slip from my fingers like so. No, I have to grasp it. But you want something, fair enough, we all want something. Though I am sure you want more than any mortal trinket, because money can only by so much, but in the great scheme of things... so little. And I rather settle for what is eternal, and I promise you, godhood is that of which I seek."

From Deborah's point of view, money could buy a lot. A lot of things she had not even been near to having all of her life. And as he spoke she started to think of letting the room get swallowed by her light explosion and leave it as he was blinded temporarily, but she guessed that it would just give her more problems. And even though she wasn't exactly fond of the man she wasn't angry either, a bit irritated perhaps but not more than that.

"So tell me, do you want to be on the side of a god and with the benefits and... pleasures he will provide? And have all else mortals tremble at your voice, my dear precious jewel. That is your payment."

Deborah cowered her mouth as she thought through what he said, if what he said was true it sure did sound great. Deborah’s opinion of the king himself could wait, this was her golden opportunity to finally get what she deserved in life. "My king, if that means I will be able to leave the slums in the end I'm at your service. Nothing in life is free, but I accept your proposal." As soon as she ended the sentence she tapped his wrist with her finger while her face started to show an annoyed expression, "Now let go of my neck, king. Don't we both want a blessed start of something that could turn out to be something good?"

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General King Zaheed


"My king, if that means I will be able to leave the slums in the end I'm at your service. Nothing in life is free, but I accept your proposal."

"Good," is all Zaheed responded to that, though it tickled him that said, accept, as if he needed her approval. Even if Deborah had refused, Zaheed was being literal when he spoke of grasping his jewel. If Zaheed had to, he would of held her as his prisoner, as his slave. That was something about the Thanos family, they were a determined type of people, when they have a goal something they stop at nothing to fulfill. Sure, Zotar wanted vengeance, but he pursued honor, honor from his tribe, honor from his dying mother. Zaheed, on the other hand, pursued power, and by all means, he was going to get it, or die trying.

"Now let go of my neck, king. Don't we both want a blessed start of something that could turn out to be something good?"

Zaheed leaned in unnecessarily close to Deborah's face for he had an issue with her first sentence, "First thing's first, never tell me what to do, my lady." The king releasing her neck, "Other than that, yes, I would want our start to be... good." Zaheed turned to the door, hand against the hilt of his sword, as he pointed his hand in the direction to his destination, "But come, let me show you where you will be staying."

Zaheed led his newly hired "mage adviser" to her living quarters and where she also will be fostering her research. The two traveled down stairs into the dungeon. The reason why Zaheed showed Deborah to a room underground was because they will be discussing certain topics and plotting certain plans, that Zaheed preferred no one else hearing, although he has never been quite fearful it came to eavesdroppers and tattlers, because he knew he had the talent of manipulation and swaying the truth into his own.

The room was actually quite big, Zaheed had it already ordered to be clear, thus the room itself was vacant. The room once was a torture chamber, but Zaheed demanded that it be cleaned and cleared of cobwebs, however the bloodstains were that of impossible to be completely washed away. The room had it scars, and true scars only fade away.

"Whatever you want you will get," Zaheed granted her. "Of course, if it never intrudes with my plans. But yes, you will be treated well, as if you are of the royal family also." Zaheed lowered his voice and muttered, "Although, I would not be quite using the word family." Then coughed, clearing his throat, "Said you were from the slums, now you will be treated far better than any duke or duchess in the tribe. The necessary furniture pieces will be on their way once you inform the servants of what type of specific appliances meet your taste, including style and color."

Yes, Zaheed spoke the truth, he was going to give Deborah what ever she wanted, well if it did not oppose him of course. "And that also goes for whatever books and scrolls you want when it comes to research. When it comes to my dream of controlling more than one element turning into reality."

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It was an divided Deborah that followed the king to this strange place where she should be staying at. She had a hard time believing that she would be provided with a place to stay, but there was a small part of her that was somewhat excited about it. Even though she was walking downwards, to the chilly parts underneath the castle she couldn't really complain since she had experienced such a change. Living in the slums one day and the next in the castle, well the dungeons but still it was the castle. But there was one thing that destroyed that slightly happy mode for her, it was the fact that he had told her not to tell him what to do. It was easier said than done however and it made her slightly irritated.

As they reached the room Deborah looked around, it wasn't the prettiest thing she had seen. Cold. But bigger than what she was used to though. Without asking and even before he had started talking she had already started strolling around the room, inspecting it closer. While she did she started to wonder what kind of room it was, in her mind it seemed unlikely that rooms just where unused. But as she walked she started to believe that it was better to convince herself that the royalties had room and money to waste on empty spaces since her imagination had taken a turn to ideas she didn't really favor.

"Whatever you want you will get. Of course, if it never intrudes with my plans. But yes, you will be treated well, as if you are of the royal family also. Although, I would not be quite using the word family. Said you were from the slums, now you will be treated far better than any duke or duchess in the tribe. The necessary furniture pieces will be on their way once you inform the servants of what type of specific appliances meet your taste, including style and color.

Deborah spun around and watched the king, stunned by the news not the comment after them. She had totally ignored the part about his plans, but it was highly unlikely that she would even come up with something like that. But to be offered anything she could come up with that was huge, even though she should had ideas popping in her mind. All of those things that she wanted to have and never had the chance to lay her hands on was swiped from her mind, it was blank. The news was too big for her to handle.

"And that also goes for whatever books and scrolls you want when it comes to research. When it comes to my dream of controlling more than one element turning into reality."

Deborah wasn't that found of books and reading, probably because it wasn't her specialty. Sure, she could read, even though she probably wasn't the best at it and it had been a long time since she had done it lastly. But if that was what it would take to stay down here and not get sent back to the slums or worse get her head separated from the rest of the body then fine. She would read. Even though she had no idea what she was supposed to read.

So after a moment of silence she started to stroll around the room again, arms folded, "I will let the servants know what I desire when I know then. And about the books and the scrolls, I would rather look for them by myself since I can't really say what I am looking for. I think it would be better for me to be shown the library and the parts of interest in it."

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General King Zaheed


"Very well, the servants can give you a tour of the palace including the library, but for me now, I must harvest military plans," Zaheed responded, knowing now he was in full control of every army the fire tribe owned. Because even before, when he was general, it was a thorn against his side to know that though he commands, he also had to carry them. Though not anymore, Zaheed had only one boss, and that was himself. "I'm sure you will find your stay here quite enjoyable, and I believe and hope, I can say the same about your service.

Zaheed turned to exit the run, and as he did, Zaheed was stopped by a messenger who called out his name, "King Zaheed." Zaheed folded his arms, with a furrow in his brow, he answered, "Yes, what is it?" And while Zaheed gave his question, he sensed their be a problem, especially in the nervous and pale face of the man who served as the informer. But lately, Zaheed been given an expression of such, perhaps the kingdom started to feel another side of Zaheed, a darker atmosphere that surrounded him. But the common explanation for that is because Zaheed lost his father and now brother, thus reason why he seems so... black inside. But in all truths, Zaheed lost all light in his heart decades ago.

"The queen... she's-- she is perhaps on her last breaths. In all respects, King Zaheed, you should go check on her," the messenger suggested, but the suggestion felt more like a command to Zaheed. And Ivana's title of queen bothered Zaheed, that termed meant authority, it meant power, but she had none of that. Zaheed wanted to be the only person with a title resorting to control.

Zaheed twisted his body, rotating with strong force as he dunk his armored fist into the servant's stomach, feeling the crackle of a rib, "That may have been a suggestion of yours, but since when where you my adviser." The young man was on the ground, clutching the stricken spot on his body, as he coughed and groaned with pain. "That's right," Zaheed said. "I have none. Learn your place, or next time this happens others will suffer to scrub your remains from off the stone tiles." It would not be any surprise if Deborah heard Zaheed, the scene happened only a few meters away. But the reason why Zaheed didn't kill the servant, was because he did not want to appear to be a lunatic, that surely could start riots, and even get him overthrown, besides he may get the point where he ends countless lives of innocent because he felt like it. But for now, he must gradually get there, build his power, construct the intimation and fill his people with fear.

Zaheed walked to his mother, Queen Ivana, she was deathly ill. "Zotar?" she called out, expecting her younger son, because Zaheed had not yet appeared for her weak eyes to see. "Gabriela?" she then spoke out for her daughter, and finally her youngest son, "Zenas?" But not Zaheed, and though he wished to be mad that she didn't call him, he knew he had no right to be, not really. For Zaheed, separated himself from everyone besides his father and Zotar, because his father was the prize and Zotar was the competition, and Zaheed was only set on winning Zarfu's favoritism. And when Zaheed couldn't win that, he went for the throne instead, and went at any cost to get it.

"No, it is me, King Zaheed," he did not even acknowledged that dying woman was his mother, or that he was her son, and that was because he felt no connection. It was not that Ivana was a horrible mother, she was great one, a loving nurturer, but it was that Zaheed pushed that love away for his own ambitions.

"Zaheed? Oh, yes my oldest. Son... W-where is Zotar?" No one had yet informed Ivana of Zotar's kidnapping, no one wanted her to die in worry. But Zaheed was now irritated when she asked for Zotar. So Zaheed did the cruel thing to answer, "He is dead." Well, to Zaheed he good as dead, so he lied.

"D-dead?" Ivana cried, sobbing. "N-no, no, no..." Ivana paused to look up at Zaheed, she reached out a hand but he just stood there still, unkind enough to not embrace his mother in her last moments. "At now in my last seconds I see you, Zaheed, my son. But soon... I will see Zotar and your father. I love you..." And with that Ivana gave her last breath, the sickness had overwhelmed her, or so the entire world will believe, but Zaheed knew the truth lied in poison, his poison. Zaheed was a snake after all, he pierced her with his venom.

In rushed Zenas and Gabriela, Zenas wrapped an arm around his sister as she panicked to run over to her mother, "Is it too late?" she asked, with her long curls wrapped against her face in a messy fashion, a way you would know she rushed to get to palace. "I... I...," Zenas could not finished his sentence as he dropped to the ground besides Ivana, holding her cold bony and in his, crying himself with Gabriela. And in their grief, Zaheed was a statue, no emotion, no affection.

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Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Eirene Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Reshar Xendir
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"Very well, the servants can give you a tour of the palace including the library, but for me now, I must harvest military plans."

While the king spoke Deborah only granted him a short glance, she didn't give him a nod in agreement or a proper answer. Why? There wasn't a good reason for her to act like that, it was not like he had said anything to offend her in that statement. She had already known that he would leave as soon as he had gotten this over with. The reason for her to act that was simply because she was a sullen person. And it was sort of a silent statement that she could do whatever she wanted to and if it was to ignore him then so be it. It was not like he had time to argue because of such actions at times like these and Deborah knew it.

She listened to the footsteps on the stone tiles as he left the room with her back towards the door but as soon as he left she turned around and was just about to leave the room. It wasn't like she believed she was allowed to leave the room but neither did she think that she was a prisoner, they hadn't locked the door. But with the hand on the doorknob she stopped to listen to the discussion outside instead. Hearing the thud from something dropping to the floor and the couching Deborah made sure to at least try to make a mental note about what could happen if she try to take up to much space and authority. But somehow she believed that the note would disappear in the mist of thoughts with time, or perhaps it would be gone tomorrow.

Hearing the footsteps get more distant out there in the hallway she opened the door again and walked outside, not to ask the servant how he felt or if he needed help. No, the only thing she honored him with was a silent look. Not even of concern but of derogatory. With that she simply left the room, deciding by herself that she was going to be her own guide. It was not like she needed someone to show her around. How hard could it be?



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Eirene had spent all evening and probably most of the night inside her basement making notes on what she had discovered, not something new for the world. But something new for her. And that was mainly what mattered, she wanted to learn new things. She wanted to gain more knowledge, as long as she discovered something new every day it was a good day. Not that this day had been bad even without it. No, she believed that this day had been an extremely good one even without the wonders of what a human’s body could hide.

When she was done she washed her hands and the equipment’s in the bowl of water she had prepared beforehand. She let all the candle's flame dies out so the room fell in complete darkness, but even if the room itself was like a pitch black hole around her and the single candle she held in her hand. With it she left the room by walking up the stairs, while she locked the door to the staircase she noticed something however. Even if it was faint something could be heard in the night, screams. In wonder Eirene walked over the grass and to the front of the house, gazing out into the night, wondering why it was such a ruckus outside this night. It didn't seem to be full grown panic so it couldn't be an attack, but what could steer such emotions then?

She was just about to walk out the gate as someone grabbed her shoulder so sudden that she dropped the candle in her hand. The little flame started to burn the grass surrounding it, but the small fire didn't have a chance since the one who grabbed her scooped water out of the ocean by only his will and made it travel to the small flames. The one who had grabbed her was no one else but her oldest brother, Eden, he had not moved an inch while executing the little quenching assignment, "Father wants you to come inside, it's not safe out there."

Eirene wrinkled her forehead as she watched her older brother, she found it odd that he were there. He had his own house with a wife and kids, he should be with them at this time of night. And even though she wanted to go out to see what was happening she followed him inside the house again while glancing backwards, out at the night, with longing eyes.

When they arrived inside she saw something even stranger, everyone was awake. Even her father who would need to get up early in the morning to return to the palace and his duties. Somehow she started to wonder if it was something she had done, nervously she started to fiddle with the dark blue dress she wore. But what could she have done? A thought that jumped around in her mind was of course the body she stored down in the basement, but if they knew about it and didn't like it, shouldn't they have told her before?

While she stood there and thought to herself her father started to speak, declaring why everyone had been gathered. Well everyone but one. It struck Eirene as she looked around the room that Embla, her older sister by two years, was missing. She wondered if it could be so that she had run away from home since she had just been promised to a man Eirene knew Embla disliked. It was not that he was a bad man, it was because Embla were in love with someone else but their father would gain more by giving him to the other.

Her train of thoughts was interrupted once more by her father explaining that Embla had left the house earlier this evening, father had seen her himself but decided not to stop her since he felt like she would escape home if he had done so. But this night was a dangerous night to be out in, which was why Eirene had been stopped as she tried to leave. Words had been told that an assassin had gotten inside the city and was out there. Embla was still out there and no one knew where she was.

As soon as their father had explained it all he told her older brother's that they needed to join him in the search. The four of them left the house, leaving Eirene and her younger brother alone. Both of them stood in the doorway watching as their family rushed out into the night to find the lost member.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Eirene Character Portrait: Felicity Stark Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Reshar Xendir
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In the darkest hours just before dawn started to disperse the night sky the rest of the family returned. When they did Eirene and her younger brothers were still awake, there was no chance that one of them could fall asleep in the middle of this. They had just been sitting in the living room area in front of the fireplace and stared into it. Neither of them had spoken a word, there was nothing to say. Sure, they could sit there and pat each other's back, try to make each other feel better, cheer each other up with pretty words. But the words got stuck on the way up, neither of them could lie like that. Neither of them wanted to bring it up, the topic was too heavy to even think about. Even though Eirene wanted to think about something else, and she tried so hard to change the pictures in her mind she couldn't. The thought of Embla always snuck back and screamed inside her head. Screamed at her that Embla was out there when something like an assassin snuck around.

But as soon as Eirene and Eli's father and older brothers returned they quickly got up onto their feet’s again. Just about to rush out to the main entrance to welcome them all back and Embla as well. They never got the time to do so though, the four men wandered into the room without even taking off their coats. As they did both Eirene and Eli searched behind them with their eyes, looking after Embla. But she never showed up and the youngest children could understand what it meant even before their father tried to explain it with a cracked voice. Even though he tried to act strong in front of them they both could see that his heart was filled with sorrow.

After their father had told everyone about Embla's death every one of them was sent to bed. Well, her oldest brother was sent to the couch since neither of the other family members felt like letting him walk through the city by himself to his own house. Once inside her own bed, tucked down carefully by her father Embla lied there and stared up into the ceiling. She found it a bit odd that her father had been there to tell her goodnight, it been had aged since he had done something like that. She was an adult now so there was no need for such things. But she guessed that it was the shock from losing his oldest daughter that made him act like this towards her. She was his only daughter left now.



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Time had continued to go forward like it was cogwheels that hadn't been oiled in a long time, it moved slowly, creakingly and stood completely still at other times. Cailu wasn't being himself, he felt more hated than ever. He was hiding inside the leader's mansion most of the time, inside his room, in his bed and refused to go out of bed. He was like a sulky child, feeling bad for himself for something he had brought upon himself as well. It was as if Ara somehow had spoiled him with just her presence and now he was being like this. Servants or other's came to knock on the door from time to time and asked him to perform his duties as the leader. It was a funny thing however since he wasn't the leader and he had no idea what he was supposed to do. It was Ara who told him what to do, now he was like a lost puppy.

In the end the servants gave up and the only thing they did was bring him food. After a while they stopped doing that as well since they just got so angry with him. They knew it was his fault that Ara had been sent away, it was his idea. And of course they all disliked him for it but they just tried to act nice, but in the end their friendliness had a limit and they had reached it. So he was all alone in the big mansion. Listening to the noises from the outside, there life carried on but in there - in the cold, empty, dusty mansion it was only silence. Silence and Cailu's groans of agony. He was not a strong person, not by himself, not without Ara. He needed her to show the way first.

In the end he reached his limit as well, he couldn't go on without a proper meal. His stomach was so empty it felt like it had started to eat itself up. So since Cailu himself couldn't cook at all he swept his cloak around himself, covering this face. He knew it was a simple and probably failure as an disguise but he just didn't feel like showing his face to the townspeople. He didn't want to see their either. He just wanted to be left alone and be without their dark gazes.

So out he went, in his so discreet disguise. Even though he couldn't see them he knew that everyone was looking and that everyone knew who he was. But at least he didn't have to see them and that was all that counted. He walked over the trampled dirt paths, he knew where he was going. The only place he could get a cooked meal as long as he paid them, the inn. There was only one in the small village Airedale. But at least there was one.

When he reached it he pushed the heavy oak door out of his way and walked as far into the inn as possible, sitting down in one of the darkest corners. There he waited for someone to just take his order and then go again, leave him alone so he could sulk in his solitude.



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The castle life wasn't as fun as Deborah probably had imagined it to be while still living in the slums, being there and gaze towards the castle you imagine that their life was easy. Carefree. That somehow disaster didn't strike them at any time. How now that could work since everyone dies, get sick, wounded and so on at some point in life. But being on the outside you just can't imagine things like that, at least Deborah couldn't. But even though Deborah didn't care the slightest about the dead queen or king the rest of the castle seemed to care an awfully lot. Even though time moved on most of the people still seemed to mourn like there was no ending to it. Not that Deborah had gotten time to think about such things much, she had been busy reading. Not being the best at it she had to put all of her focus on those strange curlicues to understand what they tried to tell her.

Deborah had spent almost every day since she had moved into the castle inside the library doing something she would rather not do. She flipped through book after book, eyed parchment after parchment. There was no end to it. So many books and so little that were relevant at all. It had gotten so far that she had started to see letters haunt her in her dreams when she was asleep, they were everywhere.

But one day it happened. As she tiredly eyed through yet another really old parchment something captured her eyes. Or at first she was just about to miss it and put the parchment with all the other's that she was already done with when some words stood out a little more than the other's. The Element stones, the parchment itself didn't say much. It was basically just an old fairy tale or myth. Or so it seemed at first when she looked at it. It told the story of four stones or jewels, they each held the ability to control one of the elements by touching them. As she read it over and over Deborah started to wonder if it really just was a fairy tale and why it would be kept in the library if that was the case. It just seemed odd, even though it was old and had probably been lying there for ages, why? Why would someone even put a fairy tale in here, she had always thought it was supposed to hold the history of the Fire tribe and Murtovaara intact. So something about the fairy tale just seemed so... strange. Even though she wasn't sure if it was something she should bring to the king she decided to do it. It was something, better than nothing. And if he also thought that it sounded unlikely that the library would keep myths and bed time stories intact perhaps she was right in her suspicion.

So when she left the library she brought the parchment with her, dead set on showing it to him when he had time over to come down to her room. And there she waited for him while reading the lines over and over again. Thinking, or at least trying to think about it.

When he finally arrived she rose from her chair and held out the parchment for him to see, "I found this today. At first I thought it was just a myth or perhaps a fairy tale but then I realized that it was very strange that your library would contain something like fairy tales. So what do you think?"

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Of course Zaheed had to attend his mother's funeral, being absent would cause an outrage. But though Zaheed was king, and knew he had power, he would not wish for riots, not another headache. Though after traditions had been settled by cremation of Queen Ivana, Zaheed was interrupted in the ancient tomb of royalty by Zenas , Zaheed's youngest brother. "King Zaheed," Zenas did not bother to call Zaheed brother, they never really felt like brothers anyways. Though Zenas once did try to gain his brother's love, tried to impress him, but noticed how Zaheed was always acted friendly to Zotar, little did Zenas know the amount of hate Zaheed bottled up against Zotar. So Zenas gave up, besides he has his sister, Gabriela, Zenas and Gabriela, they have the closest sibling family relationship out of any other member of the household, well besides Zotar and both his parents.

"What is it boy?" Zaheed turned to look down at Zenas, because he was far shorter than him. But Zenas always hated when Zaheed referred to him as boy, some little kid. But he ignored it... for now. He did not have a short temper like Zotar.

"Have you heard, people are starting to say the Thanos family is cursed. Our family is cursed. First, the death of our father, the kidnapping of Zotar, and now the death of our mother."

"Do you think I care about rumors?"

"No... But neither do I think you care about this family," Zenas looked up at Zaheed with a glare and a frown. Like Zotar, and really like the rest of his siblings besides the oldest, he cared about family. "Mother died and you just stood there, like a statue, and did nothing. And why is it that though Zotar has been kidnap you also do nothing?"

"Are you questioning your king?" Zaheed's voice got more hostile as he but a tight firm grasp on the hilt of his sword.

"King? Can you for once be a brother?" Zenas sighed, "But yes, I am questioning you."

Zaheed titled his head as he pulled the blade from its sheath, "I do not tolerate any form of disrespect, boy."

"What you going to lunge that sword through my chest? All these years Zaheed, I wanted you to treat me like a brother. I wanted to gain your approval. But no, you always centered your attention to Zotar instead. Its like no matter what I do, you will never love me. So why don't you stab me, or better yet," Zenas grabbed the blade and placed it against his neck. "How about you make it slow, let me bleed to death, watch me suffer, its all you ever made me do."

"Zenas! Zaheed! Stop! Stop! Not another death!" Gabriela rushed to discover the quarrel between her two brothers, she didn't want to lose anymore family.

But Zenas knew Zaheed was not going to do it, he could see the outcome of his brave move so clearly through Zaheed's eyes. Zaheed couldn't do it, he now felt so alike to his brother. Watching approval, love from someone but never getting it. It was like a arrow had been struck right through Zaheed's heart in the blink of an eye- wounded, to feel like he committed the same action Zaheed hated his father for. Zaheed forcefully pulled the sword back and stormed off in between a mix of regret and aggravation.

The next day Zaheed was called to Deborah's room, which her living quarters were quite extravagant, lavished with only the best of quality furniture. He even ordered a chandelier be installed into her room so the place would feel less inside of a dungeon. And in fact you would not know her room was once a torture chamber. Truly, Zaheed wanted his mage to be comfortable, especially because that mage was Deborah. And Like he said before, she was his precious jewel, jewels are not kept in raggedy bags, but beautiful glass cases. Besides, Zaheed did put in consideration that she once lived in the slums, so he wanted to show her the paradise he could give if she obeyed, and hell if she didn't.

"I found this today. At first I thought it was just a myth or perhaps a fairy tale but then I realized that it was very strange that your library would contain something like fairy tales. So what do you think?"

"Come let us sit," Zaheed waved his hand over to the table so he could discuss with her sitting down, standing up made his feel more at attention but also more tense, he was not too long ago a general. "Let me see...," Zaheed grabbed the parchment. "Gabriela... she likes fairytales." Gabriela was also the mage of the family, but why didn't Zaheed ask her to help him in his grand scheme? It was because he knew she was refuse to do anything that would go against the tribe, she was always passionate about the nation, country before self, like everyone else in the Thanos family besides Zaheed.

"And though this is fairytale, I am not going to laugh. You are my mage, not a jester. I will take this serious. But I would say I am not convinced the Element stones are even real, less do I believe they will allow me to bear another power. Though, we must start somewhere. So tell me Deborah, why the Element Stones? Do you faithfully believe in them? If so, where are we to even begin to obtain them?"

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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"Come let us sit," When the king waved at her to return to the place she had just left Deborah couldn't help but snort before she actually did what he asked for. She just found it annoying that she had stood up in the first place, if she had known she wouldn't had left her seat at all to great him. Yeah, that was her manners, non-existing. "Let me see..."

As the king eyed through the page Deborah kept looking at him the whole time, listening to him mentioning someone who liked tales like this one. But the reason for Deborah to look so intensely at him was basically to see what kind of reaction he would be giving, she wanted to be prepared if it would be a bad one. And even though it wasn't precisely a good one either it was fine, he didn't look angry at least.

"And though this is fairytale, I am not going to laugh. You are my mage, not a jester. I will take this serious. But I would say I am not convinced the Element stones are even real, less do I believe they will allow me to bear another power. Though, we must start somewhere. So tell me Deborah, why the Element Stones? Do you faithfully believe in them? If so, where are we to even begin to obtain them?"

Hearing him not get her point at all made her frustrated, so frustrated that she by now had smacked her hands down at the table while rising up. Leaning over the table closer to his face while glaring at him, "No, listen to me, you got it all wrong! The thing is I don't believe this is a fairy tale and that is why I brought it to you. If I had considered it to be a fairy tale I would have left it in the library. My point was that I found this in your library. And the castle library is supposed to only store information about the tribe and the city. And all I've read through have been about things like that until I found this and if it was just a fairy tale, don't you think that someone would have thrown it out instead of placing it in there?"

After her small explosion Deborah calmed down, placing herself at the chair again but something she couldn't just shake off was her bitter expression. She was still angry at him. "Just think about it like this, what if this wasn't just a fairy tale at some point in time? If it's true that someone stole the stones it could be a long time ago, time moves one and people forget. But no, I can't say that I faithfully believe in them but it's still something. It's the first explanation I've found to the powers other than 'it's our faith to be brilliant and thus we gained our abilities from the Gods'. And don't lie and say that you've ever considered that to be a good explanation."

The second question he had asked for another thing though, Deborah hadn't thought about it. If it all was true, couldn't those stones be anywhere? They could even be at the edge of the world by now. But she tried to think about it, dragging her hand through her hair over and over again while sighing. Thinking hard about it and just like reading, thinking wasn't exactly her thing.

In the end she couldn't come up with a good explanation, she had just ideas or thoughts to share with him, "Well... King, if you were the one who stole the stones why would you steal them? Of course if you knew about their powers perhaps you wanted them for yourself and if that was the case they are probably far away by now. But shouldn't we've at least heard tales about someone with so much power by now? But if you think of it like this, you didn't want their power, why would you steal them? And who could come up with such an idea?"

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


As soon as Deborah stood up from the table, so did Zaheed. Though Deborah spoke in anger, Zaheed was not one to resort to that type of emotion. In fact, the king was quite good at bottling inside any feeling of his, it is what he did most of his life. Wear a mask, have self-control. But what did bother Zaheed the most was indeed when Deborah stood up, and he was not going to let her in anyway be over him. Like in every circumstance where Zaheed feels threatened or disrespected he immediately touches the hilt of his blade. Zaheed gave a long glare at Deborah as she spoke before he completely turned to face he wall, showing his strong disapproval. If it was anyone Deborah would be dead, but Zaheed knew he just had to be patient, just as he was patient with Zotar. He was not going to be foolish enough to attack her because he lacked any restraints. No, that is something Zotar would do, act impulsively. And Zaheed was going to do everything in his power to not end up like his brother.

Zaheed continued to let her speak as he kept silent, listening to her go on. But even after she had finished he was still quiet said not a word. Until he heard her say, "Well... King, if you were the one who stole the stones why would you steal them? Of course if you knew about their powers perhaps you wanted them for yourself and if that was the case they are probably far away by now. But shouldn't we've at least heard tales about someone with so much power by now? But if you think of it like this, you didn't want their power, why would you steal them? And who could come up with such an idea?" She asked questions, Zaheed did not want questions he wanted answers. Sure, she could do the whole cool thing with light, but if Deborah does not come up with a solution to his problem, then she does not seem at any value as he once thought.

"Deborah," he finally let his low voice break the silence he drug out for a long period of time. "I want answers, not questions. You have special talent, I have already addressed my interest by hiring you as my mage. I see potential in you, do not allow my vision to be clouded, or let me see differently of you." Zaheed turned, he started now circling around Deborah, hands now behind back at attention, the way he took every step was in a march. "I can understand if you are aggravated. I am asking you to do the impossible. However...," Zaheed stopped as he unleashed his blade, he twirled the sword with his finger, almost as if he was just playing with it, though he also stopped that and instead pointed the blade at Deborah's neck. "I also can lose my patience, get aggravated, maybe hurt you." Zaheed put the sword back in its place by its belt, "But let's see I don't throw fits, and I expect you not to either."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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"Deborah, I want answers, not questions. You have special talent, I have already addressed my interest by hiring you as my mage. I see potential in you, do not allow my vision to be clouded, or let me see differently of you."

I want answers, not questions, it was easy for him to say. Since he wasn’t the one being forced to answer the impossible questions. Deborah on the other hand was angrily clenching her fists as he started to walk around her, feeling insulted by every word that left his mouth. It was hard for her to answer those questions, why she asked them out loud was because she wished for him to speak his mind. Not only say that he could stand the theory, she needed a push in some direction. But did she get anything at all? No. She was forced to do everything on her own, how he thought when forcing her to do so she had no clue about. It all seemed rather stupid.

Hearing him admit that he indeed was asking the impossible from her didn’t make anything better, feeling the cold sharp tip of something touching her neck neither. In that moment it was as if her heart beat got stronger, rising the temperature of the room as her clenched hands started to glow brightly. But did she actually throw a fit? No. Even though it took her all of her self-restraint to not stand up so fast that the chair would fall to the ground and jump the king she managed to sit still. The only thing that moved was her hands that was shaking from hard she clenched them. When the sword was removed the shaking stopped however, the light got dimmer and dimmer as well until it disappeared and she just sat there silently staring at the table. “Fine, king.

With a deep sigh she dragged her hands through her hair again, staring at the letters. How was she supposed to give any answers? It was not like he let her get help from anyone, not even himself. This was something brilliant people should discuss with each other, not something someone like Deborah should do by herself. With a sour pitch in her voice she shrugged in the end, “I still believe that if they were stolen for someone to get powerful we should have heard something about someone like that. Word spread fast if it’s something that would intrigue the public. So I guess that if they got stolen it wasn’t in that purpose. And let’s just say that it was someone in Imos that did it, who could it be? If it was those people in Lakeshore shouldn’t they use them against you in your little war? If it’s those tree huggers in Shadowfen shouldn’t they as well be using them in their little dispute with the Water tribe. So who’s left? Airedale. And yeah, all other inconsequential villages. That's just a thought, not much.”

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed was asking too much, he knew that. In fact, yet again his hypocrisy was showing again, he asked her to meet a goal she could not reach. He wanted her to just spout out a whole plan of how to bend more than one element within just seconds. Being the oldest, Zaheed was pressured by King Zarfu, sometimes, like Deborah, he was given goals impossible for him to reach. And oh how much he hated how when he wanted help or some sort of assisted, he would just be punished or pushed even harder. Zaheed knew he was not perfect, but there was wicked crimes committed to which he did not identify as a sin. Like being power hungry and doing whatever it took to get that power even if it meant the kidnapping of his brother and poisoning his mother, being a hypocrite, and even more, owning his father's flaws, that brought shame to him personally.

“Fine, king,” Zaheed heard Deborah respond as he sat back down in the chair, but he rubbed his temples and sighed, "I apologize, Deborah. Forgive me for my rude and rash behavior." Yes Zaheed truly did apologize, he had not only pushed Deborah beyond her limits but insulted her for not meeting his impossible goal. And another reason why he had treated Deborah like so earlier, was because he never worked with anyone before, yes sure, he has worked for, and gave orders, but never had he worked with.The only time he had ever been cooperative with another being was when he was wearing a mask as he always did around Zotar. But no, he was no longer holding that false image, being someone he was not, especially not with someone who was actually of great importance to him. "Continue."

“I still believe that if they were stolen for someone to get powerful we should have heard something about someone like that. Word spread fast if it’s something that would intrigue the public. So I guess that if they got stolen it wasn’t in that purpose. And let’s just say that it was someone in Imos that did it, who could it be? If it was those people in Lakeshore shouldn’t they use them against you in your little war? If it’s those tree huggers in Shadowfen shouldn’t they as well be using them in their little dispute with the Water tribe. So who’s left? Airedale. And yeah, all other inconsequential villages. That's just a thought, not much.”

"Thought, yes now is a good time for that," Zaheed confessed, he was trying to now be more open now and less demanding. "And deep thought may just bring us to a solution. But these stones, they could be anywhere? Are the Element Stones the only way, or there another path we could take?" Zaheed was quiet, he put on a serious thinking face, instead of barking orders. "Maybe... I could somehow absorb power, another element from a soul, even it be temporary. Perhaps there is some form of dark magic that will allow me to suck the element out someone. However, don't get me wrong, I'm not dismissing the idea of the Elements Stones, I am only bringing up yet another thought of mine."

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"Thought, yes now is a good time for that. And deep thought may just bring us to a solution. But these stones, they could be anywhere? Are the Element Stones the only way, or there another path we could take?"

Another path, Deborah wasn't sure of how he meant by that. This was the only thing she had found yet, perhaps there was other information inside that library somewhere. But where it could be hiding was not something she could even imagine. But either way she found it hard to come up with what sort of solution he was talking about, would he pray in the temples to be granted another power? It didn't seem likely regarding to his character. Or did he think that he would just simply be able to tame another element by the power of his will to do so? It still didn't sound like anything that could happen, even though Deborah didn't question his mind at all. He seemed to have plenty more willpower and ambitions than most people around.

"Maybe... I could somehow absorb power, another element from a soul, even it be temporary. Perhaps there is some form of dark magic that will allow me to suck the element out someone. However, don't get me wrong, I'm not dismissing the idea of the Elements Stones, I am only bringing up yet another thought of mine."

When the king was finished declaring what kind of other solution he was thinking of Deborah leaned forward cowering her mouth, thinking hardly. She hadn't heard of something like that happening before. But even though it hadn't happened before didn't mean it was impossible, she had heard about people that had evolved their powers to involve more than what they're supposed to do. For example she had heard tales about an air bender that could form impenetrable barriers of air just like the fire benders could create the same thing but with fire instead.

When she finished thinking it through she looked up at him again, "You basically mean like how the water people are able to drain human bodies of their liquid, but instead of draining it from the liquid you want to absorb their life force? And if that's possible you hope that it would grant you their powers as well? I don't know... I'm sure you as well have heard the tales about the air bender which is able to create her own version of your fire shields, so let's just put it simple. Should it not be possible for you to learn how to drain humans as well? The question is just... how." With that Deborah got quiet, sinking down into deep thoughts again. It was not like she could learn him how to do it, she was not aware of how they did it. And the tales about the air bender did say that she had been taught by a fire exile. But Deborah had never had anyone to teach her anything. She had learnt by herself since she was the only one she knew of that possessed her abilities.

"You know, I never had anyone to teach me how to control my powers since I'm the only one. I learnt by myself, digging deep inside myself to find the answers. So I guess you should be able to learn a version of their extracting ability even without the help from someone possessing that power."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"You know, I never had anyone to teach me how to control my powers since I'm the only one. I learnt by myself, digging deep inside myself to find the answers. So I guess you should be able to learn a version of their extracting ability even without the help from someone possessing that power."

Learn? So know Zaheed was simply going to learn the element as if he was a youngling of the element's tribe. Well, it did seem more likely then off on an egg-hunt to find the stones. And it was also better than taking citizens from foreign tribes hostage for a plan that may not even work, but only arise tension, even a war. Besides, if it meant learning, it meant he could depend on himself, on his body. And Zaheed liked how Deborah included herself in this, it gave him an example, something to hope for. She was able to create something different. Though she was air and fire, she made light.

"Learn? So, I could even learn how to bend water, just like that?" Zaheed asked, for water was the one element he wished to know the most, because it was the water that fire had the most tension with, and it was always like that. But Zaheed wanted have power of his rival and no longer make water a weakness for himself.

But maybe it was possible, Zaheed's veins were not quite fired nor heated really, in fact, he drew more attention to his sword rather than his fire. So maybe with the absence of an inferno, he may actually be able to learn another element. But would the water cancel out Zaheed's fire? There were risks with a plan, but Zaheed motive was the old saying, High risk, high reward. Because the even bigger risk was that Zaheed could indeed die from these, according to the tale of the stones, though he does not put any belief in the fairytale. There were those who touched one element stone, but when they touched another their bodies could not handle the energy, they simply crumbled lifelessly and died.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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"Learn? So, I could even learn how to bend water, just like that?"

When the king uttered the sentence Deborah didn't just sigh, no she leaned her whole face down onto the palm of her hand. And like that she sat for a while, just being tired because of the whole discussion. It was like she couldn't communicate with the man at all, he heard what he wanted to hear and if it was what she meant didn't matter. It was tiring indeed. And at some point she started to doubt that she was the less intellectual person in the room. However, it could just be so that his mind was so stuck on one idea that it didn't bother to hear other things than that specifically matter.

In the end she lifted her head upwards again, dragging the face against the hand. No, she wasn't being nice towards him, but she wasn't being angry and throwing fits either. And that was what he had asked her to avoid. "No, no seriously, you are not listening to me. That was not what I said. Clear your ears and listen carefully this time, alright?

I did not say that I think you would be able to control water just like that. What I said was that I do know that people have been able to evolve their powers to be able to do more than most others, not that they got stronger in their usual abilities but that they discover new ones. Like that air bender that now can create a shield around her and other's that not even the sharpest sword can cut through, just like your fire shields. But! She had a fire exile to teach her how to do it."

With that Deborah got quiet and pounded her fingers against the table, she was trying to figure out if the king understood this time around or if he still just heard what he wanted to hear. In the end she just decided to hope for the best and so she continued, "Just like she was able to master a fire technique in her own special way I think you should be able to master a water technique in your own way. And the thing about fire is that it devours its surrounding, destroys it. So basically if you tried to master their extracting technique shouldn't you be able to extract something else than water? What if you by mastering it would actually devour their life source? Just like fire does, it feeds on the environment and devours all life which is around it to keep on burning. If you could do something like that, perhaps their powers would transfer to you as well since that's a part of their being?"

That was it, a longer and more detailed version of what she had thought. If the king didn't understand it this time she would give up and just let him go with his idea, even if it wouldn't work. Not that she could know, she just found it very unlikely that it could work like that. To be able to just change like that because you wanted too, wouldn't people had discover that by now if that was the case? And if it was like that shouldn't she be able to create fire like any fire bender, she had tried to make it work while she had been young and really tried to make it work. She had wanted it so bad, to fit in and be like everyone else. But not even the smallest candle had lit itself by her willpower.

"King, you're a fire bender," As she said it Deborah leaned over the table and pointed at his chest, "It's in your blood even though you don't like it or are satisfied with it. I think you should search inside yourself for it, not the fire itself but its desire to devour everything. Not a hunger for power or any sort of ambitions like that, I think you should search for a hunger that's deeper down than that. I don't know, I just know how I found and learned to control my powers. When you don't have anyone to show you the way you need to find it by yourself. You have been taught what you can do with your powers by those who were older than you, but what if they didn't even know the possibilities? Now it’s your turn to discover your abilities again, forget what they said and rediscover them."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed watched as his mage covered her face in frustration. "No, no seriously, you are not listening to me. That was not what I said. Clear your ears and listen carefully this time, alright?" she had commanded him, however felt no need to rush to his blade when he did. So she was aggravated, but the thing was, that Zaheed was always a man who took a want and pursued it, but not did he strive to make that goal, but as quickly as possible. So really, though he will not admit it nor be aware, he was not quite even listening to her, but instead was focused on his plan instead and dismissed hers.

"I did not say that I think you would be able to control water just like that. What I said was that I do know that people have been able to evolve their powers to be able to do more than most others, not that they got stronger in their usual abilities but that they discover new ones." She went then on to explain what she had said earlier with Zaheed even further. He sighed, listening to it again. Zaheed did not want to evolve his power, he wanted to possess another one. But as it seems, he could not, it was perhaps what he had hoped not to be, impossible. Now, he wished he had more faith in the Element Stones. Well, touching a few rocks and possibly not dying but gaining its power, sound a lot easier than having to somehow evolve his fire, into something he has no clue will become.

"King, you're a fire bender," Zaheed noticed Deborah point at him, he now did have to fight back the feeling to be feel like she was trying to dominant him. Therefore he struggled to not concur to a violent rash movement. She was just trying to communicate with him. So what Zaheed was tightly grab the arms of the chair, which really did had the stiffness inside of him, and instead looked like he was sitting up and at more attention. "It's in your blood even though you don't like it or are satisfied with it. I think you should search inside yourself for it, not the fire itself but its desire to devour everything. Not a hunger for power or any sort of ambitions like that, I think you should search for a hunger that's deeper down than that. I don't know, I just know how I found and learned to control my powers. When you don't have anyone to show you the way you need to find it by yourself. You have been taught what you can do with your powers by those who were older than you, but what if they didn't even know the possibilities? Now it’s your turn to discover your abilities again, forget what they said and rediscover them."

As Deborah's words dripped from her lips Zaheed loosened up and let a hand go form the arm of the chair. He rose his hand upwards though it was covered by an armored glove. Rediscovered, Zaheed liked how Deborah said that, it made the work to create his own ability seem least like work and more like an adventure. Maybe Zaheed, for once, can appreciate his magic. Because he never was quite attached to his flames, especially because he could never be better than Zotar when it came to bending fire. So Zaheed gave up and spent more time maneuvering his blade. When Deborah finished her sentence Zaheed rose from his seat but not as abruptly as he first did, but more gentleness and slowly like he was digesting all of what Deborah had said. "Thank you, I will immediately begin to searching deeply into my abilities." Zaheed started to walk to the door but stopped, "Deborah, I like it when you speak your mind. There are so few I permit to do so, but there are so few that breed wisdom like you." And with that Zaheed made an exit.

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Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Felicity Stark Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Sitting in the corner of the tavern Cailu felt like sinking down into the earth, not like how the earth benders did but what he wished for was more like decomposing until he was nothing at all anymore. Get buried and disappear. The whispers inside the room didn't make anything better. They just made him feel worse, he missed Ara more than anyone and everyone acted as if he didn't care at all. Even though he was so hungry that his body ached it started to feel like a bad thing to come here. At least people hadn't realized that it was him yet.

As soon as that thought entered his mind he regretted it, feeling how something warm creeped around his neck and shoulders. He was aware of the fact that it was human arms but it still got his heart to skip a beat, coming from nowhere like that. And to be precise, Cailu had never been a physical type of person so a stranger hugging him from behind wasn't his idea of pleasing moments.

”Well, if it isn't Cailu, hello there, sweetie… is there anything I could do perhaps do for you, honey?”

Cailu watched quietly Felicity as she appeared beside him, it was not a surprise that it was her who had attacked him. She was probably the only one that could come up with such an idea when it came to him, blushing he covered his ear she had just been whispering into with his hand. It felt hot, he was embarrassed and because of that he averted his eyes from her. Staring down into the table instead.

"U-Uhm..." Cailu lost his voice, it got stuck on the way up. He got to nervous, not only because of the company and the fact that he needed to say something but also because Felicity touched him so casually. The heart in his chest was beating so wildly in his chest that he felt like fainting, he was more than light headed now, "Uh... H-Hello Felicity..." For a slight moment Cailu tried to look up into her eyes when he greeted her, but he quickly looked down again, hiding his face with the hood. Mostly because it felt like his face was burning up or melting of his skeleton by now, "U-Uh... Y-You know... N-None of those w-who work in the m-mansion comes to work anymore... A-And... Uh... I'm here to e-eat... I don't care what it is... I p-pay..."



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"Thank you, I will immediately begin to searching deeply into my abilities."

Deborah watched quietly as the king started to leave the room, she was satisfied with the result. For once the king had actually listened to her instead of manipulating her words to fit what he wanted to hear. And it was not like Deborah could teach the king how to use fire or water, she would probably not even be able to teach him to manipulate light. Basically because she had no idea what his potential was, sure he carried fire in his veins but that didn't mean that all that he had been taught by others was all there was. And that was what she felt like she could teach him. That he had to find his own potential, and he had understood it. The future ahead felt like it could be exciting now because Deborah didn't know what could happen.

"Deborah, I like it when you speak your mind. There are so few I permit to do so, but there are so few that breed wisdom like you." And gone, the king left and there she sat shocked by the message that ending phrase had carried. Even though Deborah by now was pretty sure that the king saw her as an asset, or he had even said nice things to her the first time they met since she was so different. But that had all been because of her abilities and that was what he had been appreciating, now he actually said something nice towards her persona. It tickled something inside her in a good way, she started to change her opinion of the king.

In her current state she thought to herself that perhaps he wasn't so bad after all, he had sure been very generous when it came to most things. And even though he was demanding it could be because he was stressed? It seemed to be much work to be done when you had so many people to take care of, so of course he would be stressed. Or at least that was ideas that formed inside Deborah's mind, making excuses for him for how he acted from time to time. Deborah was much more understanding and easier to work with once she had gotten that small feeling that she indeed was respected and valuable for the other one.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


King Zaheed summoned Deborah to his study. Though why did he not meet her in her room? It was because Zaheed was so deeply latched onto his studies it was like he could not leave them, nor waste time it would take to walk to the lower levels of the palace. And it was apparent by the sight of Zaheed's study that he had indeed took ever word Deborah advised and even commanded to heart. Books both about fire and human anatomy were either piled high in stacks or knocked on the floor and opened wide. Scrolls about water were spread out either on his desk or on the floor. But it was not just books and scrolls that were present in his room, against another table were cages of mice. It was not uncommon that Zaheed had mice in a cage, he was known to be a man who delights in zoos, but it was uncommon that he would have them in a study.

As soon as Deborah entered the room Zaheed turned around with the look in his eyes of restlessness and exhaustion. His sleep deprivation was apparent for the dark circles clearly showed below his pupils. But though his physical state was tired, he smiled, he looked happy. Though it was because he was sleep deprived but strangely happy that gave the appearance of a madman. Zaheed particularly excited to see Deborah, thus he immediately rose from his stool dashing to his mage, he called her name "Deborah!" Except as he did so Zaheed tripped over a clutter of books, collapsing to the ground. And though he fell and lacked a preferred amount of energy Zaheed rose to the ground like it was nothing. He let the energy of his emotions steer him, as he always did.

"I-I have something to show you." Zaheed strutted over to the table of cages where he opened one and pulled a rodent out. "Remember a couple days ago when you told me to search for a hunger that's deeper down within me, and to rediscover. Well I took all of that to heart." Zaheed lied the mouse on the table where he placed his pointer finger on the tail to prevent it from scurrying away. "Isn't he so cute? Well, not anymore." Zaheed then took his hand and lied to fingers on the back with the tips of his finger touching the neck. The mouse started to squirm as Zaheed fed the rodent his heat, giving the creature an obsessive amount of it to the point it felt its only blood boil from inside. "I learned that fire element really is not about the fire, its about what's inside- the heat. And you know what needs heat, us humans. So then I thought, if there is anyway I could manipulate the heat from the internal anatomy, forgetting everything I have been taught about my abilities. Pretending as if I did not know how to light a single flame, but was only just discovering nothing but heat. I learned how to transfer heat, absorb it."

The power Zaheed had learned could be used for healing, such as if a fire soldier was stuck in some position where his heat was running low, another soldier could sacrifice his life by transferring his own heat to his fellow soldier so that at least he has enough energy and power to finish the mission. Or it could be used as a weapon to what Zaheed had done and give hyperthermia and cook someone from the inside. It was so Zaheed, gritty and unsusceptible that it was he who played with your body.

Zaheed let go of the rat once its body had finally gave up due to the harsh temperature. The creature laid dead and motionless, just like that, Zaheed killed it without drawing a single ounce of blood.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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To be summoned by the king, to actually be the one that went to see him instead of just getting visits from him inside her room when he or she herself had something to discuss, that was a first. But it was not like Deborah complained. She took it as a good sign or at least some sort of sign. And it would be a lie if she denied havening even the slightest interest in what the matter could be, it intrigued her. So it was not like she dragged her legs after her when she went over there, but running would be beneath her dignity.

However, what greeted her on the other side of that door was something she not even in her wildest fantasies would be able to imagine. To watch someone as the king, it was the king, not just call her name in some sort of excitement and then fall flat to the ground. Well, it wasn't something she or anyone else could see every day. But now it was taking place in front of her and the only thing she could do when he fell was wrinkle her entire face in a grimace, while wondering what had possessed the man. Because to her this all was certainly out of character for the man, he had most of the time acted so stern and mighty, like he was better than the others. And suddenly he seemed human. It was all too odd for Deborah and for a short moment she was thinking about turning around and walk out the door again.

The stuttering didn't help his cause, she was seriously wondering if he had hit his head when falling or gotten sick. Or lost it completely. When it all was happening not even once did Deborah ask him how it had gone or if he was fine, all she did was stand in the door opening while folding her arms. Carrying her usual sour expression, because she couldn't find this funny. Not even slightly. If it would be described with one world she would probably pick creepy.

"Remember a couple days ago when you told me to search for a hunger that's deeper down within me, and to rediscover. Well I took all of that to heart."

How did he expect her to have forgotten that already? Deborah just sighed at the statement, she had a hard time tolerating people when they acted normal and when they acted crazy they were even more annoying. However, just as Deborah was about to give up on this meeting and return later when the king had collected himself the interesting part begun. It captured her attention immediately, hearing him speak of how he had actually followed her suggestion. And when he started to demonstrate it all she couldn't help but get dragged closer, in the end she had placed herself beside him while watching the mice die. For once the king had succeeded to impress her, this was much more than she had thought he would be able to do. She was completely blown away by it actually, that he had mastered such a technique by himself in matters of days.

With a grin Deborah nodded slowly, to even try to call what she did a smile would be an exaggeration, "Congratulations king, you didn't fail to impress. I guess you are more astounding than I at first thought. I'm really impressed actually, it's the first time I've seen something like this."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"Congratulations king, you didn't fail to impress. I guess you are more astounding than I at first thought. I'm really impressed actually, it's the first time I've seen something like this."

Zaheed chuckled, "But these are just mice. Come, let me show you the true wonder of this power." Zaheed turned and led Deborah out of his study and to the castle's dungeon. There they walked through a hall of cells, though even at that point the king said nothing, he wanted to keep it all one big surprise. Zaheed order two guards to follow him, but this was only so that they could unlock a cell and shackle the prisoner, but he dismissed him after they did so. Now most of the prisoners in the castle were those that were yet to await their execution.

As soon as Zaheed's eyes locked with the prisoner's it was like Zaheed started to act like himself again, serious and empowering. It was like Zaheed dipped his tongue into a flavor of bitterness while he stared into the eyes of the incarcerated man. "Do you know what I hate more than murders, than liars, than thieves. Its rebels and traitors, those who commit treason." Immediately Zaheed's anger took control as he unsuspectedly launched a grasp on the man's neck. It was on an impulsive wrath, something Zaheed is not quite known to have, perhaps Zotar, but not as much for Zaheed. He just wanted so badly to take all his hate out against the man and squeeze the life out of him. "My men caught this ill-witted dissenter trying to conduct a riot. He announced on the streets that I was a weakling." Zaheed feared that he would be labelled one due to the entire time that he had been king that he had not yet dispatched a mission to rescue his brother, nor has he avenged his father's murderers. But weakling, that very word angered him, now he was being called one. Zaheed felt he had devoted his life to strength, to be praised for being one of strength. No, Zaheed was not going to tolerate the disrespect, not one bit.

"But who is the weak one now?" Zaheed removed his tight firm grab on the neck and adjusted his hand to the criminal's heart. He dug his fingernails deep into the man's skin as he then pushed all of his heat to the prisoner. And just like the rat, the man then experienced hyperthermia. But what scared him the most was that this was all of Zaheed's doing. Zaheed then went to recite passages of the medical books he had read, "In stages of hyperthermia victim experiences heat sweating, quick rapid short breaths, dry skin all while blood vessels dilate in an attempt to increase heat loss. Accompanying dehydration can produce nausea, vomiting, headaches, and low blood pressure. The latter can lead to fainting or dizziness, especially if the standing position is assumed quickly. In severe heat stroke, there may be confused, hostile, or seemingly intoxicated behavior. Heart rate and respiration rate will increase as blood pressure drops and the heart attempts to maintain adequate circulation. Eventually the victim will experience organ failure therefore resulting in death..."

As soon as the man dropped to the ground dead Zaheed also stumbled but fell against the cells' wall to catch himself, but then too did he fall to his knees shivering. Zaheed had been overusing his power, but not only that, as Zaheed fed the rebel his heat, Zaheed lost his very own. Zaheed body heat was now dropping incredibly low and the weakness of his method was revealed. It was not the weakness of the power however, he knew how to use it correctly perhaps he would not be in deathly temperatures now. But Zaheed was never an expert with magic however he was indeed flawed when it came to it. "But... Hypothermia," Zaheed identified what he knew was a fault with his use of this new power. Day and night he practiced and practiced, trying to get over the withdraw he suffers, but only failure. "C-core b-b-body's lost of subsistent b-b-body heat. Moderate stages include violent shivers, muscle mis-coordination, mild confusion... Surface blood vessels contract further as the body-- as the body-- as-- as..." Zaheed was just so cold he could not finish his sentence, but just remain their shaking, feeling helpless.

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Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Eirene Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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"But these are just mice. Come, let me show you the true wonder of this power."

If Deborah had been interested to find out what the king had wanted to show her before it was nothing compared to what she felt now. She wasn't sure what it was that she felt so for but she just found it all very thrilling. So of course she followed the king closely behind as he walked out and made way to the dungeons. She found it odd at first but then the pieces started to fall into place.

When he entered one of the cells Deborah just stood in the opening watching what was happening, listening to the words that were said. Deborah didn't care the slightest about traitors, and she doubted that the king cared about such things either. He had said it to her personally, that he didn't care about the tribe. He cared for himself. And that was what she thought trigged the king's anger, that the man had spoken badly of king Zaheed himself. She found it rather funny that he claimed that it was the treason that bugged him.

As he displayed his ability once more but this time on an actual human Deborah stayed away this time, she had seen it up close once so she just kept her distance. It was still just as amazing as the first time she saw it, if not even more this time around. It was not that Deborah was a horrid person, okay she was. She couldn't help but delight in the ability and the way the creatures died. It was all so terrific.

At least Deborah believed that until the king himself fell to the ground, and as he did she stood still just watching him. There were a lot of unusual words in his descriptions of the powers. What he called it to name two, she translated them to extremely hot and possibly extremely cold. At least that's was what it looked like having him shivering and stuttering on the floor, suddenly his earlier behavior didn’t seem so odd anymore. If this was the results of him practicing his new ability she could understand his earlier personality change.

Without moving Deborah just smacked her mouth, "So, what now king? Should I save you or just ignore it?" She was just being mean, she had no reason to let him freeze to death. If she did that it would only lead to her own death, she was the last one being around him when he died. She would be blamed for it.

Without waiting for an answer, because she doubted she would get one, she just walked over to him and crouched down, "No worries, king. You have me on your side. I won't let you die, so I guess I should warm you up then?" With that sentence her globe of light appeared from her palm, floating in the air. She let it grow until the heat of it could be felt inside the whole room, making her who wasn't cold at the moment get small sweet drops covering her face. The thing about Deborah's light was that it wasn't just pretty, it was warm as well. The best description of it would probably be that she created small sun's that she controlled, and the bigger she let them get the darker the color they had got while the heat got more intense.

While the globe floated in the air in front of the king she started to rub his limbs to get the circulation going again, she guessed that it worked like that. Deborah didn't know, she had no clue about anything when it came to the body and its anatomy. But it wasn't like she could ask the king either since he was so cold that the only thing that had left his mouth in the end was words she couldn't even distinguish because of his horrible stuttering.



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The nest day when Eirene woke up the night before seemed to be a dream. It sounded so unlikely that someone had died, wasn't that just too ironical? If it was because Eirene had lost the true meaning of death after thinking about it so much or something blocking the tears and sadness Eirene couldn't answer. She just didn't feel sad, well not the way she knew she should be experiencing it. She wasn't crying, she wasn't unable to get out of bed in the morning. She just felt empty, as if something was missing. Horrible enough she even thought to herself if she would be allowed to study the body later. She knew the answer to that already, it would be no. So there was no meaning to even ask.

When Eirene made her way out of her bedroom she found the house to be oddly quiet, it was as if the whole building had sunken deep down into slumber. Not even a single sound could be heard, and as she walked around looking for the others she didn’t find anyone. In the end she was standing in the middle of the living room and wondering if everyone was still sleeping because she had not been bold enough to check their chambers. That would be too intrusive of her, but while she passed her father’s room she could hear sounds be made from the inside. It was odd because usually he would be at the palace by now, she lightly knocked on the wood.

The sound from the inside stopped and soon enough the door opened, through the gap she looked up at her father's swollen face. It looked as if he hadn't gotten any sleep that night, his eyes red and watery. Eirene had seen this happening before, when her mother passed away so she knew he had been crying. But not even the look of her father's crying face made it sting in her chest, she still felt empty. As if her emotions had taken an vacation and left her body.

With a rough and rasping voice her father tried to force forward a smile, it turned out to be a grimace instead, "Oh, it's you Eirene... Do you need something?"

Eirene just shook her head while still looking up at him without blinking, "No, I'm good. I heard sounds from the inside and found it odd, you're usually not at home this late in the mornings."

For a short moment surprisement got displayed on the man’s face when he realized how sunny it was outside, because inside his room the curtains where still covering the windows making the whole room look as if it was still night, "Oh, I'm sorry dearie... I didn't realize... Uhm... Actually, I have something I would like you to do. I meant to go and give them this by myself but I guess I forgot..." With that her father disappeared for a short moment, hurrying into the room again while Eirene stood and waited outside the door. When he returned he placed an envelope in her hands before stroking her head softly, "This, give the king and the other's this. It's my resignation letter."

For the first time this morning Eirene got thrown off guard, she stared down at the letter and was just about to ask her father what he meant but the door had already been shut close again. It still confused her however, for him to do something like that just because of the death of Embla. Perhaps he blamed himself or his work, that it somehow was a part of why she had died along with three other's that night.

Even though Eirene never got her answers to why her father decided to withdraw his position as an adviser she walked over to the palace, she doubted that anyone else of her siblings would do it. While inside she told the guards of her reason to visit and told them that her father had requested her to deliver the message personally. In the end she did get the directions to which she would be heading and so she walked through that stunning place again, taking every ounce of it inn with her wide opened eyes.

When she finally arrived to the place the guards had directed her too she knocked lightly on the door once again and waited for an invitation. When she got one she entered the room and walked over to their leader and held out the letter, "It's from my father. He wanted to give it to you by himself but he... is unable to leave his room at the moment. Oh!" On the inside Eirene cursed her forgetfulness and she curtseyed, "It's a pleasure to meet again, my Lord."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"So, what now king? Should I save you or just ignore it?"

Zaheed was really now showing his weaknesses, but it was not like he wasn't planning to. Sure he was hoping that he would not collapse to the floor and wrap himself in a ball begging, for some type of heat. But he always was not absolutely sure that he ad mastered his power. Thus he brought his mage to assist him in overcome the obstacle. However even if Deborah simply did choose not to say him, Zaheed knew that he would have to lay there in his own self-created torment until his magic was strong enough to light a saving flame. It was what he had been doing for the past couple days, reason for why he had been acting strange earlier. But what Deborah could do was kill him, which of course Zaheed would not be quite okay with, but its not like he could do anything about it.

But why did Zaheed put himself in a situation like that? Let his guard down and show is weakness to Deborah? It was because if there was one thing Zaheed was good at it was reading people, thus reason he also had the talent of manipulating people. And something told him that Deborah did not see him as an enemy. And something was indeed when he was testing her, the first time, when he grabbed her neck, she did not attack. The second time was when he drew his sword out against her, still she did not attack. So there was no sign that Zaheed could suspect that Deborah would want him dead.

"No worries, king. You have me on your side. I won't let you die, so I guess I should warm you up then?"

Zaheed was never a man that ever wanted someone's help, but he could not be aggravated that she help him, not after experiencing the potential of Deborah's magic. Sure he had seen the glowing orb, but to feel it- that was amazing. It opened his eyes to heat and the power of. It inspired him even more to look deeper into his own though he had failed numerously to rid his body of its after-effects. Zaheed would have started at the bright ball but his eyes were not use to the light, thus he was forced to close them. However he definitely could still feel the greatness.

When he was finally heated up, Zaheed realized something, its not about the power that amazed him, its was the one using that power. And because of this, he knew he made the right choice. But well sure, she was rude to him at times, but the same went for him, especially when he decides to get aggressive. Zaheed rose up from the ground as he looked into Deborah's light gray eyes. Since their second visit in her room, Zaheed was beginning to actually like Deborah herself and not her power, he started to see her for her, and not some object, not some precious jewel. It was first her wisdom that impressed him, now her loyalty that could be said to have charmed him.

"Amazing... And I'm not talking just about your powers, you are already know how impressed I am with your abilities. But what you did... I admire your loyalty. Glad to have you on my side." For once he was happy with another being, besides his pet raven. And for her loyalty, Zaheed truthfully respected Deborah, something so few people gain. But there was so few people that Zaheed believed cared about him, or more like accepted the fact that they cared about him.

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Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Eirene Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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#, as written by Lyysa


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For a while Deborah was wondering if she was doing the helping right, if it was this that she should be doing. Sure, she could go and ask the guards for help to bring the king up from the cold dungeons but something told her that he wouldn't have appreciated her doing so. But however, Deborah had never been forced to help someone recover from such severe hypo... hype... whatever he had called it. Coldness. But when the king moved again, even rose to his feet’s, Deborah patted herself on the back mentally for succeeding.

"Amazing... And I'm not talking just about your powers, you are already know how impressed I am with your abilities. But what you did... I admire your loyalty. Glad to have you on my side."

For a short moment Deborah lost her focus and just blinked at the praise, she had heard him praise her persona once before. But now he did it again, it wasn't her light, he actually called her amazing. That short moment when she got completely distracted was the exact moment the light she had created died out as well, it imploded and vanished from what the eye could detect. Even though she found it rather humiliating that her surprise was shown so clearly it wasn't anything she could do anything about when it already was done so she just straightened up her back again and shrugged slightly. Acting as if it was nothing, a child’s play, easy, "You are absolutely right in that statement. Indeed, I am amazing. It's not a secret."

If Deborah was even the slightest embarrassed from stating such a thing? No, not even a little. If there was something someone would learn after getting to know Deborah it was the fact that she was extremely self-centered. All was about her and what was best for her. And of course the king's satisfaction with her were what was best for her and she never said no to compliments. She adored them, even though she wasn't that used to hearing them come from others. But that was even nicer.

Cocky enough she added with a grin, "Well, you're not so bad yourself. But I can understand that's it's hard to surpass someone like me." If she regretted it after letting it leave her lips? No, actually not. She had just saved the man the man - according to herself, she felt like she deserved to act this way. And it was not an uncommon act coming from her.



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Eirene watched quietly as their leader spoke to his advisors and the how they all left the room. It was not like she wanted to disturb anything important, however, she doubted that it was what she had done. Her father had been missing and they couldn't make any decisions without hearing his opinion too. But that time was over now, she knew it but it was still hard to accept. To think of her father as something as simple as just a noble it just didn't fit him. Or fit the previous version of her father, a new one had emerged.

When they were alone she took her time studying Zianro as he read the letter her father had written. Not even she knew what it contained, or she knew the basic information but not how detailed it was or which words her father had used. But by the expression that was shown she doubted it was good ones. Perhaps she was a bit creepy were she stood and just watched without blinking, but that was sadly the way she was. She liked to observe, she found pleasure in doing so.

"However, what your father has done now is make my life even more miserable. The fool. Does he know how long it takes to pick a successor? I'm gonna have to pick one of your siblings or even you, but I doubt you'd want that kind of job."

When the mentioned of her Eirene just yanked slightly backward with a disturbed look in her eyes, to be positioned as her father's successor was the last thing she wanted to happen to her. She was not even a little interested in politics and such a position would force her to dedicate her life to such things. No, that was not something for her.

"Being a ruler is so Lonesome! The palace feels like an isolated dungeon when the ruler doesn't have a spouse or issue, something your father and some of the other advisers were trying to push on me... But I digress, the reason for your father's resignation is personal, and I quite understand that. Your sister, correct? A thousand apologies and my condolences."

"Oh, yes. Father couldn't handle the news, he didn't even want to get out of his chamber to greet me this morning, he just handed me the letter. I think he blames himself for what happened to her, that his position was what brought that upon her." There was no fuss, Eirene got right to the point and spoke of her thoughts about the issue, she didn't see why she would need to avoid the topic. As mentioned her emotions about it all was defected. "Anyway, if the successor needs to be someone from my family I would advise you to take my oldest brother in consideration. He like politics and has been discussing it with father since he got old enough, he's a strong mage as well. I do think you would like him, I like him. He's nice."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"You are absolutely right in that statement. Indeed, I am amazing. It's not a secret."

Zaheed had no problem with Deborah believing she was amazing, no problem at all. But it was not until she had said, "Well, you're not so bad yourself. But I can understand that's it's hard to surpass someone like me." It was that second sentence that bothered him the most. Zaheed saw it that because he revealed his weakness, that she found Zaheed lesser than her. Even though she may have been fair from what he assumed, Zaheed starting to believe it was mistake displaying his power until it met perfection. However even when she did say such, Zaheed's face did not change, in fact, anyone would think he was not offended, not offended at all. His face didn't change, he did not saying anything but, "Is that so?", but even then his tone did not change.

The reason why Zaheed summoned Deborah in the first place was not only to show how he could transfer heat by either absorbing or feeding it to other sources, this sources being living breathing bodies, but also so that he would hear her advice or instruction of how to overcome the hindrance. But now, he feared he asked her, he may sound weak, and if there was one thing Zaheed hated to be it was indeed weak. He already let enough walls down, and at this point he was not in the mood to ask. He was not curious nor was he open to hear anything else she said.

But why did Zaheed continue to act like he was completely fine? Thanos men were always taught if you have a problem with someone then either work it out, but if you are not willing to do even that specifically at that moment slit their throat, or have their head on a pike. It is better to settle your problems right there and then rather than to brew a storm of revenge. But Zaheed was one to wait, because it was not all the time that the settled things or that he resorted to violence, such as with Zotar. Instead Zaheed waited for either the perfect time to strike, or the perfect time to make a comeback. And that was what he was going to do with Deborah, wait until he was strong and able to show dominance, bring a comeback.

Though for now, he exited the dungeon and retreated back to his study were he then continued on his path to becoming that god he pictured himself to be.

The setting changes from imos to Murtovaara

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Mekaisto Orieska
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The sight of the annoying woman tumbling to the ground by the force was indeed a sight Deborah enjoyed more than usual. It was just something about the woman that made the whole situation more satisfying. But the moment her fist met the girl’s arms it sure was a bit disappointing, she had aimed for the girl’s nose. The plan was to destroy that annoyingly pretty face, sadly it wasn't happening in one punch. Because no, Deborah wasn't nearly finished by that point. Her plan had been to turn her opponent to a bloody mash but her prey suddenly lost all of her courage and ran.

Confused by the sudden escape she stood there and massaged her knuckles with brows still furrowed. The people that had been staring at the scene started to move again, continue with their daily lives since there wasn't anything more to say. The entertainment was over. Deborah could have chased the other woman but it simply wasn't worth the effort. So as the strange woman disappeared in the crowd with her strange raven following her highly above the human’s heads Deborah turned around and walked in the other direction. Back to where she came from.

As always the castle towered over the other buildings on it hill, from there you would really feel as if you looked down at the ordinary people. The closer she got to the building the more she dragged her feet’s after her. All the solitude had really gotten to her and even though she knew it was best to return she didn't feel like doing it at all. The more the castle grew as she got closer the more she dragged her feet’s after her, getting slower and slower in the movements. Her breath turned into something more like sighs, with every in breath she breathed out through her mouth in despair.

Once she passed the gates it was as if the castle walls closed around her, swallowed her whole into its deep abyss. Like she disappeared from the world. Yes, she was free to wander around where ever she wanted but she felt more like a prisoner by now. And as soon as she got into her room she could almost hear the key turning in the door. Locking her inside. But the door open when she turned the doorknob, she left it that way, wide open, as she sat down onto the bed and just stared at the opening while thinking back at what the girl had said. Leaving is easy, you just have to stop making excuses.

The setting changes from murtovaara to Imos

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Ara Cilivren Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Na'ari Aurelis
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Bellistrad Indorial

Zianro's words burned through Bellistrad unlike any flame had before. Even though this man's goal was the same as Bellistrad's, their ideals were far from similar. The "fun" that Zianro spoke of actually brought a laugh and a little understanding out of Bellistrad, short but obviously genuine. He did not find humor in the situation but Zianro's antics made a little stress relieve needed.
"You drive a hard bargain for the fate of the world, old friend. I accept the challenge, and I expect you to keep your word." He turned towards Cailu and Ara, holding out his hand as if waiting for them to take it and produced a small blue flame in the palm of his hand.

The small flame pulsed with a heartbeat like rhythm. Bellistrad let his hand drop and allowed the flame to drift over towards where the two Air benders stood, the flame settling just over Cailu's shoulder. Unseen by everyone was the small stream of plasma that connected Bellistrad's palm to the blue flame, and in the palm of his hand was a small bright blue diamond shaped flame that seemed like it was a part of his flesh. "If this flame goes out, than I am dead before my search is over and Zianro has cheated me. It will live off of your energy, not mine, but it is my will keeping it alight. I will not be able to sense anything while I search so I will be defenseless. Do what you think is best." Bellistrad pulls his sword out of the floor and re-sheaths it before handing it off to one of the few soldiers remaining nearby and removes his cloak, revealing his blue tunic and black pants once again, as well as his blue hair which was messier than usual because of his actions that day.

Sinking down into a cross-legged sitting position Bellistrad inhales and closes his eyes, aligning his chakra's in his body starting from the lowest and going up to the highest, his eighth chakra. His soul leaves his body which seems to be asleep in his sitting position, and a small smile forms on his bodies face for a moment. His soul expands its consciousness out to encompass the entire village, including the skies above and the tunnels below. He felt every person and living thing as a small amount of light and heat, but lost sense of himself in the process.

This was a dangerous thing for him to do, for he could accidentally forget who he was and attach himself to another living thing instead. He had to be careful to always keep himself in the back of his thoughts as he searched the identity of everyone around him, looking for the only other Fire bender within his field of awareness. It was a hard task, feeling the emotions of everyone in the village at once. He could hardly make sense of it all, especially since these were not his people. Fire Benders had a different way of thinking than any other tribe, they made everything a challenge and Bellistrad was no different but neither was Zotar.

It took well over 15 minutes for Bellistrad to even feel Zotar separately, and he could not even tell if it was in fact him but it was a dark lonely and defeated soul. The kind that only a Firebender in restraint could be. While this may just be another prisoner of war, Bellistrad felt kinship from this soul, and knew it might be his best chance. Bellistrad's soul moved to this new feeling in the underground of Lakeshore, and opened his spiritual eyes. He saw a man broken, left alone and betrayed. He also saw a possible future that could reverse all that had happened to him. It was not a certain thing that this soul was Zotar, it was not the same one Bellistrad had known all those years ago. It was changed by incarceration, and Bellistrad wanted to help it even if this was not Zotar.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Cailu Elre Character Portrait: Ara Cilivren Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Eirene Character Portrait: Na'ari Aurelis Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Reshar Xendir Character Portrait: Mekaisto Orieska
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General King Zaheed


King Zaheed stared intently at his hand, as he had been doing to many parts of his body over the course of the last few weeks because things have turned to abnormalities. Muscles that surged down the whole right arm had enlarged and swelled up five times the regular size. The same as went for his hand with fingernails ascending out like a short sword blade from the long menacing fingers. Yet on his left, his arm remained the same. And as for his torso, it grew at an unhuman state of volume as his back formed him to hunch over with the spine poking through flesh. He had also morphed taller, his legs heightening as if he were a giant, but he looked more than that of one, instead, he looked like a monster.

Zaheed was the clear example of what happens when a man hungers for more. He care not for balance, all he desired was to devour. After he was heated and saved by Deborah when he misused his powers, he felt that he revealed to his mage a weakness in himself. That day Zaheed told himself never again, because now he was ready to show all of Imos who he truly was. For once, he was going to stop the games and strip off his mask.

Zaheed discovered something in his time of finding powers of a god, as he were absorbing heat, he started to sense another essence deep inside a vessel body, he found power, the magic all of Imos bear. So he did what anyone would expect Zaheed to do, he robbed them of their gifts, leaving victims powerless. Though he would not be able to bend other elements, he would be able to feast upon the very extract of magic. Their magic energy would course through his veins, making him stronger and more deadly, yet the question Zaheed lacks to be concerned about is, how much more power can he absorb before his body refuses to take anymore. Are there limits to his madness?

Zaheed heard something fall behind his causing a great disturbance to him, thus he turned around to have seen his raven friend, Icarus. The bird had flown in such a hurry he lost his stability, but it was for Icarus had urgent news.

“Zaheed! Zaheed!” he squawked, a noise only Zaheed could understand, and only was it Icarus permitted to call on the King by just his first name. “I-Its about Bellistrad!”

“What did he do, run away?” Zaheed questioned, stepping closer to Icarus, to which then the bird backed up, noticing what Zaheed had become. But instead of asking questions about Zaheed’s body, Icarus decided to stay relevant.

“Much more than that, I’ve been spying on him just as you ordered, and Bellistrad seeks to free your brother… And he got the air tribe involved.”
There was a pause, Icarus was afraid what may happen next. But Zaheed only laughed. “So the boy wishes to help out little brother. I doubt he be successful, but perhaps it would have been better that I had killed him. Yes, that is what I should of done.” Zaheed snatched the bird by its neck. “I will have you know I commanded he find the shape shifting tribe for you!”

“Zaheed, I know! I know! You wished to find some way to undue the curse, so you hoped on finding the ones who form animals, perhaps to find a way to break the spell. You wanted me as a man once again, I know. Could you comprehend how dearly I covet my old life?”

Zaheed held the bird up higher, tightening his grip. “My friend, your words portray you as a weakling. I shall make the weak strong!"

“W-what are you doing!” Icarus squirmed as he felt something surge through his soul, he felt something he had not felt in years- magic. Zaheed transferred his magic to the body of the bird once man. And as this power grew inside of Icarus, so did his physical being. The black wings swoop out in large stature, as his beak sprouted through greater lengths in a point. Icarus looked as twisted as Zaheed, yet Zaheed saw Icarus as a worthy opponent against his enemies and a pleasant and menacing sight to be displayed against his bulging shoulder.

“I will stain Imos with my existence! So you said Bellistrad wants to free Zotar? Heh, well I better let baby brother know what it means to truly be in control. We attack the earth tribe at nightfall! Zotar will blindly love me for it.”

Just as Zaheed had ordered it, soldiers surrounded around the earth tribe at nightfall, though in secret. Archers were prepared and ready to fire their flaming arrows against the tribe dominantly surrounded and constructed of trees. Since Zaheed had been king, the military of the fire tribe has advance, though even when he was a general, the fire tribe had always been known for its great stance military wise. But Zaheed has drafted all boys of the tribe of age seven, the amount of training without rest has proven to be brutal but effective, but yet his men were ready as they will ever be.

Zaheed stood slightly in front of his men, though he wore not armor, for his body had emerged too large to fit any longer. Besides, his body was not the only thing growing bigger, it was also his pride, his belief that his body had sunk image to that of a god, thus no longer did he need things of mortals, such as armor or even weapons. Instead Zaheed wore a pair of trousers and a deep dark crimson cloak with its hood lurking over his black locks. Against his shoulder perched his grisly pet bird.

Zaheed brought Deborah along with him, he wanted to show to her his greatness, that he was not weak and what vision he promised when he first met her was coming true. “Are you prepared to witness reality molded by my hands, Deborah?” He looked down at her, for his height reached above all others. It was a surprise to everyone else of what creature Zaheed had turned into. “Experience it, be immersed in my eminence, all of Imos will be.” Zaheed suddenly with great force sung his arm up signaling for the archers to fire, and then it started. A wave of flames soared against the great black sky, reaching for Shadow in a fiery fiendish embrace. And when the first arrow struck into the bark of the tree village, all hell fell upon the nation as it burst into flames.

“Slay those who decline their salvation, and deliver it to those who surrender through their capture as slaves!” Zaheed commanded his men as the arrows flew over them. “Today I shall deliver the children of fire into warriors strung to the call of glory!” As soon as the arrows fell onto ground, infantry fled Shadowfen, and Icarus jumped off of his master’s shoulder and launched into the night to screech battle cries, to intensify the earth tribe’s fear. Zaheed also entered seeking the head of the leader, with power and pride blinding his eyes. He wanted to be worshiped, but above that, he wanted to be feared, so much so, he spared a few so that they may cry to the other nations in message of the horror Zaheed has wrecked upon them and that he will not stop here.

“Ah… I never sought out fire so beautiful, not until it was forged in my name,” He spoke to Deborah. Zaheed stood before the Shadowfen’s grand tree which held the leader’s home, but now burned in an inferno. It was the aftermath of the battle, the earth tribe was destroyed, though not extinct, no Zaheed surely would put his new slaves to work in an army against the rest of the tribes of Imos. “I wonder what nation I will burst into flames next, perhaps the air tribe, yes.” He acted so causal when it came to destroying tribes, because he did not see it as destruction, he saw it as a game of conquering. “Will the fire tribe praise for joy, their god has arrived? No, not just this tribe, but all of Imos will see my godhood. Yes, I put death to the old myths of divinities by pronouncing it illegal. How does that sound, Deborah? The lawbreakers be beaten into submission of my worship.”

He saw himself as a god, and would force others to as well, but little did he know, or more like, accept the many flaws that hindered him. Such as flaws in his physical body- unbalanced, heavy, and in will of recklessness, and no one mustn't forget the flaws in that sinister mind of his for there was no strategy only a hunger for pride and power.




Lord Vinicius



There he stood, wrist stretched and bounded by chains as they were from day one. He was being fed, but only to the very subsistence in order to keep him as Zianro toy, or so Zotar felt. Another cruel joke Zotar witness Zianro play was the candle. Whether or not Zotar was a fire bender, he was a human, and all people need some type of heat to forbid them from death. So Zianro's men put a candle inches away from Zotar's reach so that he could have only poor ounces of the warm, but also enough to mock him, enough to give him a false sense of hope.

But Zotar did keep in thought, how much longer does he have to live, before Zianro gets bored? He was surprised he has been able to survive this far, but when does the day that ends his misery- when does that day come? Will it ever come? It was as if the thoughts Zotar did conceive were either concerns and worries mixed in with confusion and questions. He knew he was never going to surrender, Zotar was too stubborn for that, even in his weakest moments, he was not going to surrender to Zianro. Instead, he hungered for an escape as he did from the first second he was imprisoned, but now, he had only believed that escape would come out of death. And he would take it if he could.

Though it was not until this moment that forced a change of mind. Something came over Zotar, no it was like he came over it. Zotar felt his veins be filled and his body consume an energy so long ago he had felt. It was heat, real heat, no mockery, no tease, no joke, this was real. But did Zotar believe that at first, that he was feeling something more than grief, that he was alive? Of course not, it was unimaginable. So, as soon as he felt the first thread of heat, he told himself it was a dream. Sure he will go along with it, but he trusted he would wake up to suffering all over again.

Zotar felt the heat in his veins, but he concentrated all the power to the shackles latched to his wrist. And by that, he was able to demolish the metal by melting it. And as soon as the cuffs were off, Zotar felt the wrist, he rubbed his finger on the bone, for the shackles hugged on so tightly, the skin and flesh were crushed beneath the metal. Zotar stepped to the candle, he stomped his foot against the wax, feeling the flame burn into his heel, and he loved every second of it. He dipped his fingers into the hot wax, toying with it, but though he told himself again, it was only a dream.

Zotar looked to corner of his eyes, a light, like footsteps. Maybe the dream was trying to tell him something, so he followed it. He pressed his hands against the wooden door meant to lock him in, but he burned through it, to chase the light. Zotar knew he had to hurry, he did not know how much time he had left before guards smell the smoke from the door.

The light let him through tunnels and out of the dungeon. He was on the surface, but that had not yet hit reality to him, still in thought this was a dream. Zotar was also not observant of his surroundings, other than not be caught, for he was not sticking around to admire anything, instead his mind focused on the light. Even when he made to Zianro's palace, he did not try to bring up such a thought, to him, that would be insane, freedom does not just show up one day, or does it?

The light let him to a person, this was when Zotar started to believe this was real. He stepped closer to what appeared to be a blue haired young man. All Zotar's eyes were stationed on was him, for the light follow this one person and no one else. Zotar doubted the stranger would recognize Zotar, for the once strong healthy lord, now closely resembled a skeleton with a thin mask of skin. Zotar's hair grew longer, so did his beard, and because of the stress and worry, he looked slightly older. There was one part about him however that could identify him as a former ruler of the fire tribe, it was the brand marks from the day he wore the traditional arm guards of lords generations before.

However, as soon as Zotar stepped close enough to the man, Zotar touched his shoulder. He wanted to know if this person was real, or was it just a hallucination? If he was not dreaming because a dream would not possible go on this long and make a bit of sense, then Zotar questioned if he was delusional. But as soon as Zotar laid his fingers on a stranger, feeling that this was a real person. A person that was not Zianro or one of his heartless guardsmen, someone that was not going to hurt him.

Zotar immediately then wrapped his arms tightly around the man, never wanting to let go, determined to never be alone again and to never let solitude bite against spine and into his mind. It was an embrace that expressed the amount of desolation Zotar were strangled and suffocated with. Sure the face was familiar, he did not know who this was, he did not know this was Bellistrad Indorial the exile he wished arrested, nor did care. An abundance of emotion flooded Zotar, it was something he could not let dwell inside, so Zotar wept in joy with his head buried deeply inside of Bellistrad's shoulder. Zotar was known to be a man who acted on emotion, but not like this. He never cried in public, even when his father died, he knew he had to be strong for his people, especially when he found out he was going to be lord.

But now nothing else mattered to him right now, but this moment, that he was actually in contact with someone. He ached for many things he lost when trapped inside of his cell, one of those things being utterly the ability to know you are not alone. He felt the heat of another soul, and it was enough to bring him to tears and his voice into sobbing.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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She had created a monster. All she had wanted to do was help. Do what she was assigned to do. She wanted to do good, or bad, she had no idea what she had wanted when she had uttered those cursed words. But it wasn't this. This was wrong. So wrong. She had just wanted to help him. Not destroy him. Perhaps he had always been a monster and this was just him showing his true colors. But Deborah couldn't help but feel guilty for what was in her presence. She tried to accept what she had done but it was so hard. She created a monster.

For the first time in her grown up life Deborah was scared. Genuinely terrified by something or someone. She almost felt ashamed for all the things she had feared as a kid, that she could be so scared of something as pathetic as those people. Now she knew for the first time what fear really was. How it made all of her inside go numb as if it froze her so deep it went straight into the core.

While standing there, watching something she knew she should enjoy. The flames, the screams, the destruction of what once was one of the pieces of the heart of Imos but wasn't anymore. She couldn't enjoy herself. Neither did she say anything even though the monster spoke her name. For the first time since finding her inner strength Deborah made herself smaller. She wasn't demanding space, attention or anything. She still kept her arms folded but it wasn't to seem strong, it was more like she tried to hug herself. Hide herself. When Shadowfen burned to the ground Deborah only wished to be somewhere else, having the girl's words ringing inside her ears. Leaving is easy, you just have to stop making excuses. Lies. All of it was lies.

She couldn't face the monster, she couldn't look at the man. The voice was the same. It still sounded like the one she had agreed to work under, the one that indeed had promised her that she would be siding with a god. But she couldn't see this creature as a god. And it sort of hurt, hearing the voice of a man she had respected coming out of the mouth of something so wrong. And she had sort of liked the man as well. Well, he had been the first one to actually see her. The first one to look past the fact that she wasn't able to create a single flame by using her mind and he still thought she was special. He had seen what she already knew. And now this. Deborah couldn't help but blame herself for what had happened to the man and no she didn't see this as a good thing. She couldn't see it as a good thing. She only saw a monster were it once had been a man.

“Will the fire tribe praise for joy, their god has arrived? No, not just this tribe, but all of Imos will see my godhood. Yes, I put death to the old myths of divinities by pronouncing it illegal. How does that sound, Deborah? The lawbreakers be beaten into submission of my worship.”

"Uhh..." The sound continued to sound for a minute straight without Deborah even trying to face the self-declaimed god, she didn't know what she was supposed to say or how she was supposed to act. But in the end she forced her usual grin curve her lips while she for the first time that night stared up at what she had created, "It... sounds magnificent.... King." She had hesitated, uncertain what she was supposed to call the man now. He called himself god, but she had no idea what you were supposed to call "gods". So she hesitated and simply went with what she had used to call the man before he had turned into a monster. "Is there anything... I can do? Or... something."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"Uhh..." What was this? Zaheed rose his eyebrow in concern, something was odd. It seemed Deborah was afraid? No, a woman like her looks and acts as if she could fear nothing. Even before times in the castle when Zaheed clutched her neck, she did not seem scared at that moment, instead only irritated or threatened. But now, now, she was behaving much differently. "It... sounds magnificent.... King." Did she truly think so? Or was she just agreeing to save herself. Zaheed sensed the same type of comportment as he did with his men. Was it how he looked? Yes, that had been the reason, wasn't it. Zaheed wanted Deborah to respect him for his strength, did he want her to be terrified of him. He could not say yes to that.

"Is there anything... I can do? Or... something."

"Ah...," Zaheed stepping closer to Deborah, approaching her face to face, with only a couple of inches away for distance. "Now you are trying to avoid me. You want to leave my presence. If it was anybody else, I would not have much a problem with it. But was it not you, that led me and my body to this state? You told me to find myself, to rediscover my powers. And now... now you are scared? You out of all people."

Zaheed was not mad, it was what he wanted, people to fear him, make his subjects shudder at the sight of him. But he did not ever consider Deborah as one of those people to do so. "Thus, what, what now? Are you going to glow your shining ball and threaten to blind me?" Being feared, totally feared, it was not what Zaheed wanted after all. Because even as a young boy he wanted praise from his father, that what he wanted from Deborah. He in a way, like this father, he wanted Deborah to praise him. All others of the world, could shake in terror, but Deborah, he now targeted her as the unit he sought to please.

"Why aren't you happy? Don't you hate the world and people because of your past being raise in the slums? Years of being seen as low as dust, being spit on as if you were nothing? Shouldn't you of all people be happy when we burn it? When we give the world a piece of who we are. We have power to do whatever we want..." Zaheed paused. "Wait, that's right, I have not shared my ability. Do you want me to..." Zaheed was talking about transferring his power to her, just as he did to his bird.


Lord Vinicius


Zotar's thin body, or what was left of it, was shielded by a cloak given by Bellistrad. But still, it was a mystery to him who this man was, though also Zotar did not care. For after being locked away for who knows how long, Zotar was not going to be picky about his rescuer. He however, perceive thought of what was going to happen next, no instead, he treasured this moment, Bell's presence. But the best part of all this, was that it was real, not some dream as he once considered. Because yes, Zotar in the past, has had dreams that only felt like a mockery. Dreams of escaping, being back in the tribe, or even dreams with a world where his father never died. In such deep misery, it had gotten to the point, what in his life before imprisonment he would consider good dreams, had too become a nightmare. Because those good dreams felt only there to express and emphasis the horrors of his present life.

"It is alright now Zotar. I will keep the cold away from you. Until you are ready."

Looking up to the man, confused and in question, Zotar asked in a low quiet voice, this being the first time he has talked to someone and it not being Zianro in weeks, perhaps even a month. "R-ready? Ready for what?" That was when it all clicked, "Wait, why am I here... anyways? Where is here?" Zotar back away from Bellistrad to now observe his surroundings, but that was when the anger that had once been strip from him returned, and it was an eruption of fury.

Because as soon as he looked Zianro in he face, he felt his insides boil, and every muscle he did have, flexed in tenseness. Everything Zianro did to Zotar swarmed his mind, he wanted vengeance. "Zianro..." teeth were gritted as Zotar spoke, but he was not going to go by Zotar any longer. "You took everything away from me!" His veins started to brighten, with the brand marks glowing the most radiant. "My family, my hope, my spirit, even my own name!"

Like it being natural to him, perhaps maybe because it was, Vinicius angled his hands where the right was over the left with space in between for the forging and conjuring of a ball of fire. As it grew, Vinicius spoke in all bitterness and rage, "Before I hated the water tribe because of traditions, histories. Almost like I was born to. But now, now its personal. And I will make you remember that when I am kicking your ashes about until my foot breaks." Vinicius did not care that he was much weaker than Zianro, well, perhaps weaker than anybody in the whole nation he was captive by. But Vinicius was crazy and ridden with enough rage, he was willing to die trying to kill Zianro.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Those few brave minutes when she actually was able to face her creation ended abruptly as he came closer, as soon as she could feel the warmth of his breath Deborah adverted her eyes from his. Staring intensely to the side of his head instead, at the fire behind him. Was she ashamed of herself for doing so? Of course she was. If she could she would probably dig her own grave right there and then just to hide herself and her shame underneath the dirt. She was so extremely disappointed with herself for looking away. But she just couldn’t bear looking into his eyes at this point. Not now, not yet.

What he said was just adding salt to the wounds, to her it felt like he did it on purpose. Hurt her. She saw it as some twisted revenge of his for turning his body into that. She knew that it was her fault that he looked like that but she simply didn’t want to listen to him telling her that as well. Because, she felt so guilty already. Every sentence felt just like a dagger piercing her chest with extreme force. It already hurt so badly inside of her at this point because everything he said was true.

“Why aren’t you happy?” Yes, why wasn’t she happy? It was true that she had all of her life wished to see the world burn. To have her revenge, or what it now was that she wanted. She didn’t know anymore. She just felt lost. “Shouldn’t you of all people be happy when we burn it? When we give the world a piece of who we are. We have power to do whatever we want...” Deborah didn’t like hearing him describe them as a “we”. Even if he had looked like a man when he said it she still wouldn’t enjoy that choice of word. She had always seen them as a you and a me. Him and her. Separately. Not a we. And now Deborah felt that the title was even more wrong. “Wait, that’s right, I have not shared my ability. Do you want me to...”

“No!” Suddenly Deborah was able to raise her voice for the first time since seeing what the king had become. Her protest came out a lot harsher than she had expected it to however. But she wasn’t stupid. That bird the king had wasn’t normal, just as abnormal as the king. She could figure out by herself why the bird looked like that. At least she thought she could. And she had no intention to turn into something even close to what the king had become. Sure, she knew that she probably deserved it for turning him into that. But that didn’t mean she actually would let it happen or wanted it to. She didn’t want to turn into something like that. She was happy with herself the way she was already.

Even though the king still was too close for her to feel comfortable she turned her eyes towards him once again, looking straight into that gaze of his. “No. I don’t want you to do that. I… I believe I am who I want to be already. Don’t change me.” With a deep sigh she inspected the creature for the first time and smacked her mouth afterwards to just add the smallest amount of attitude, to fake being fearless, “I’m going to be honest with you. You are not exactly something I would describe a feast for the eyes at the moment. And it will take some time to get used to you looking this way. I’m not used to it yet. And I’m still a bit shocked I guess… It was not like you, I don’t know… gave me a hint? Before you revealed your new… look I mean. So… I'm just trying to process all of this? It’s quite a lot to take in in such a short amount of time.”

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


“No!” So she really did believe his appearance and new ability was disturbing and distorted. Zaheed was handing out power to her, his power, and she just declines it strongly. Was it truly that bad as others had seen it to be? Zaheed did not understand, he thought this was a good thing, his new powers allowed him to gain a victory by conquering the earth tribe, thus strengthening his own. Ironic how when finally Zaheed quits the games, and stops from hiding himself behind false emotions, lies, and illusion, when he reveals who he truly is emotional, his physical state changed too.

“No. I don’t want you to do that. I… I believe I am who I want to be already. Don’t change me.”

Change, that is what Deborah said. Is that what she saw him as? So that is what happened, she made it sound like something bad. She strongly refused to let Zaheed transform her into what he had turned himself into. She commanded him not to change her. And from when they first met each other Zaheed could not stand being commanded by anyone, even if the order was put in a friendly light tongue. But now he was not mad at Deborah, he saw her differently from when he first met her.

“I’m going to be honest with you. You are not exactly something I would describe a feast for the eyes at the moment. And it will take some time to get used to you looking this way. I’m not used to it yet. And I’m still a bit shocked I guess… It was not like you, I don’t know… gave me a hint? Before you revealed your new… look I mean. So… I'm just trying to process all of this? It’s quite a lot to take in in such a short amount of time.”

It was still about the looks, even after everything he had done, take her advice, find his new power, conquer a tribe, and she still hung on to his appearance. So, what did it feel like? Well, it felt like a stab through the chest for Zaheed, like someone hurt him- she hurt him. It felt like his father. Yes, Zaheed at that moment, experienced the same feeling he felt when he could not make his father happy, when he sensed his father's favoritism for Zotar.He tried to make her proud of him, did everything she said, but yet, she seemed afraid, like she did not want this to happen.

Thus, what did Zaheed say back, what did he do to her? He said, "Oh..." And he did nothing. What was there to do? He might just scare her again, perhaps to the point she runs away. When Zaheed said Deborah was special, he was not lying, because to him Deborah was the one person he valued to the point he worshipped her, he sought out her approval, just like the way he wanted his father to be proud of him. And when he did not get it, he was not angry, but instead he was sad. This was no longer power-hungry Zaheed who thought he was a god, instead Zaheed acted as he did when he was a young boy, before the hate against the tribe, against his family, when he just wanted to make a certain someone happy. And though he conquered a nation, Zaheed felt like he failed.

And his sorrow was clearly experienced as he looked down at the ground, and just remained silent. No more bragging or boasting, no more threats, no more questions, just silence.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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There was one thought that came to Deborah's mind once the king got silence, fragile. Something with the silence just made his new appearance easier to accept. The way he behaved, he just seemed smaller somehow. Deborah couldn't help but wonder if the king actually was rather weak on the inside. But it was not something she had seen from him before so it caught her off guard, she had actually thought the king was unable to feel anything but anger. Apparently she was wrong.

She was just there to keep the king company. The only reason she was brought there was to be on display. Or no, that wasn't right. She wasn't on display, it was the other ones that got to shine. The king as well. She was just there to watch the others show off what they could do. What a true fire wielder could do, not some fraud like her. The king had indeed complimented her for her abilities, told her they were "special", but words were still just words. Just because someone uttered them didn't mean they were true. Now she knew that they were a lie, that she would never be good enough for this tribe.

But if she was supposed to just keep the king company while all the others had their fun she sure wasn't doing a good job at the moment. Neither did she know how she was supposed to cheer him up or what it was that she needed to do. In uncomfortable situations like this she usually walked away or got irritated, but sadly that wasn't going to work this time.

"Um... you know this is actually the first time I'm outside of Murtovaara. Is it strange that it feels like I've entered a completely different world? I don't know but it looks so different," She still thought that the whole situation was extremely uncomfortable and the fact that she conversed with herself didn't exactly help. But what was she supposed to do? She just hoped that something she said would at least make him stop staring at the ground at this point. "Does all of Imos look like this? I mean, it's so green. Or it was before."

Without noticing it she had started to walk back and forth beside Zaheed while thinking about the world she had never even tried to discover. Now when she finally had, she was disappointed at her younger self for not even trying earlier. It felt like she had wasted so many years of her life inside of Murtovaara. "Is it strange that I'm looking forward to when you will attack Airedale? I've never seen it, but I'm pretty sure that's where my father lives. Or lived. He's probably dead or something. Even if he isn't it's not like I'm going to recognize him. I've never seen him before. Or my mother. But I don't know, most of those who control the air lives there, right? He should be there... It just gives me this strange feeling inside when I think about it. That I may catch a glimpse of him without even knowing it. It's complicated... It's like I'm angry and excited at the same time."

Once she stopped moving so did her mouth, since the king wasn't speaking she had just started to think out loud. Now she realized how much she had told him and shut her mouth instead. She continued to stand still like the king for a while until she turned around to face him once more, "So... You still haven't explained how your heat experiments turned into... what this is that you do now. So, what was it that you found after you rediscovered your abilities?"

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


While the whole time Deborah spoke, more like Zaheed, she rambled. He got to a point where he stopped listening, it was almost like she spoke to keep things from feeling awkward or uncomfortable. But Zaheed was busy thinking, pondering, asking himself, Did I waste my time? That question being directed towards Deborah. Was it even worth trying to get her approval? Why did he feel like he always had to? It was because he always did, he was just following the pattern of his life. Because even after his father and before Deborah, he was still beckoning for praise, it just being from Zotar, but only in hopes that he may not know Zaheed's plan to steal the throne.

After his silence, Zaheed finally took his eyes off of the ground and onto Deborah's face. He got what he wanted, didn't he? So why did he want more? That's the word, more. Why did he always feel like he wanted more? No, he should just accept Deborah as what he hired her to be, a mage. She was supposed to guide him to a newfound ability worthy of taking a nation. And she did it.

“I believe we are done here,” he had announced, folding his arms and sighing. It was as if now he was disappointed with himself. He was not going to lie to himself, he liked Deborah. At first, it was because of her unique power, then it was because of her history. Her past of being lowly looked upon and not accepted, he felt a connection there. And Zaheed could never fight his empathy for others, when he knows the same feeling of rejection. He felt bad for her, just as he felt bad for Zenas, his youngest brother, thus decided not to take his life.

But it was then that Zaheed learned a lesson, he could not make people like him. He could not force them, because force only brings fear. It was a point Zaheed wished he grasped way earlier in his life, because he acknowledged that now was too late for him to change for the better. His body, his mind, it was too twisted and deformed to ever undo what has been done.

"When we head back to Murtovaara, I assure you, Deborah Sigrun, you will be paid for your service. I did appear to make it sound as if you were trapped in a deal where there was no going back, no leaving. But I wrong. I was foolish enough to believe--" Zaheed stopped himself, he didn't need to go into detail. "You are not my prisoner, you are my mage, more like you were my mage. Your goal was to lead me to a new power, and you have fulfilled it. Congratulations, you are dismissed."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Eirene Character Portrait: Na'ari Aurelis Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Mekaisto Orieska
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell immediately jumped at Zotar as he began to threaten Zianro. He got in between Zianro and Zotar as the fireball was released, and though it missed Bellistrad, Zianro was able to stop it. Bell listened to Zianro and shook his head in disapproval of the water king. The man had dug his own trench with those words, closing off as many doors as he opened. Bell turned his back on Zianro and put his hand on Zotar's shoulder to turn him away as well and started to lead him out of the room. "Zianro, I am sorry you would be so caulous as to deny that this is possible. Where is the hopeful young leader I once knew? I pray that before this is all over I get to see him again." With that Bell ushered Zotar out of the palace of the water tribe and stopped short as he realized there was a platoon of water benders outside the palace doors, or what was left of them, examining the damage with dropped jaws.

Bell had almost forgotten that he had blown apart the entire front of the palace in order to gain entrance to see Zianro in the first place. As the soldiers stood in awe of the utter destruction, Bell walked Zotar down past them and they all let them pass by moving out of their way. They were either too scared of Bellistrad to dare make a move against him, or too confused to question his presence. As they neared the village gates, Bell found his horse in the nearest open stable and set Zotar on it with some difficulty. Bell took the reigns and started walking down the road now leaving the villages.

"Well now, I suppose we should find a place to rest and get you healed both physically and spiritually. We wont have much time until this all spills over and you need to be prepared." At that exact moment a strong wave of emotional disparity comes over Bellistrad. His horse is in as much distress as he is in that moment, as a flood of terror pain and death rolls over him. Turning to the side, Bellistrad pukes on the edge of the road and expels a groan afterwards. He had never felt anything like it before, and it could only mean one thing.

The war had escalated and an entire culture was now reduced to little more than dust and memory. "Correction, we have no time."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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For a while Deborah just stared blankly at the king, thinking about what he had just said. Dismissed, the word bounced around in her head. Not even one feeling got expressed on her face, it was like every ounce of what made her human, her feelings and expressions, had gotten washed away leaving just a shell left. But then she closed her eyes, took a deep breath and opened them again and the light in them was back. The power that had been gone since she saw his new appearance was back and she was angry. No, angry was an understatement. She was furious. Not only because she lost her employment but because she didn't actually have one in the first place. She felt used, tricked, like a big joke. And she was tired of all of this.

"Oh, really?" The mocking tone of her voice was so distinct that even the dullest person would be able to detect and for the first time this evening she was the one that got closer to the king, "I'm dismissed? From being your 'mage'?" The laugh that emerged was just as mocking, cold and harsh. "I was never your 'mage', king. And let me guess, I was never meant to be your mage either? Your goal was to lead me to my new power, ooh, was that what I was doing? Because I remember it differently. I didn't do anything. It was you that lead yourself to your new power while I was stuck in the basement for... I don't even know how long!"

She felt fooled, like this had been a big joke the entire time. Like it was one last gruesome display from her own tribe that she was wrong. That she had just been kept in that basement for the fun of it. Now, when that tribe concurred land she wasn't even let to participate in it. She was only here to see how a true fire wielder should be, how wrong she was. And now she got dismissed. Of course she would think it was a joke from their side. A cruel joke. She had nothing now. She didn't have a place to live in the slums nor in the castle, she didn't own anything else than the clothes she had on her body and neither did she have money. And she needed the money he offered for his cruel joke. But her pride didn't let her take that money or what sort of payment it was that he offered.

The king may believe he had seen her true power, the strange woman may have thought she had seen Deborah's true power. All of the world may think she had already shown it. But she hadn't. She had told the king about it, but he hadn't listened. When she was angry just a little of it got displayed. Her glowing fists, it was only a sample. But now. Her fists was glowing as they always did when she was mad, but there was more. All of her was glowing. Light radiated from her skin all over her body, a harsh blinding light. The fire around her faded in comparison, it was like the night in the forest suddenly had turned into the brightest day. The king had shown his true face, now she showed all of them her true appearance for the first time. This was what she kept under control and hid all the time, the true face of her power. She was like a sun that walked the earth.

"I refuse to get paid for this! To get paid for being trapped inside that basement in solitude without knowing whenever I would be 'needed'. But I never was needed, was I? The only time you came to me was to show what you could do. Oh, could it be so that you had another real mage that actually got to help? While I was only there to play the fool? It wouldn't surprise me. You fire wielders are all the same! I was never good enough to help because I wasn't one of you, I've never been and I will never be either. So keep your filthy money, king."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed was mocked, and by the first words that came out of her mouth with that mockery now turned the monster that Zaheed could be against her. She had pride, enough that Zaheed believed that she could not admit that she was working for him. As if she could not stand being under him. Was she trying to rise above him? The way she carried herself, that was how Zaheed decreed it.

As she talked, as she glowed, there was changes Zaheed made also. Because though she glowed, not particularly an ugly thing, in fact beautiful perhaps, yet when Zaheed tensed, a grotesque image he unleashed. Something he had not done before, for he had not felt so infuriated before, no until this moment. Every muscle, even the ones that irrationally poked out and about flexed, bulging, with every vein amongst his flesh jolted from the skin. His back hunch, face darted down to the ground as he clenched his fist. Something about Zaheed was not normal at that moment, well, nothing he had done was normal, but now that abnormal creature was ready to attack, not because he had a delusional vision to make a god of himself, but because Deborah had awaken the rage from inside him. And Zaheed, unlike his brothers and father, did not get mad so easily, he often bottled the anger inside, thus created him what he is today. But he was now ready to unleash it all.

With his left hand, he back hand slapped her, the though that was not the hand being unnaturally large and massive. Yet it was enough force to bring her to the ground. "To be formal, you were my magical adviser! It was what you were hired for! So don't act like you were my prisoner! Don't act like you did not have purpose, like I made you worthless! I listened to your advice and instruction! And you know well enough, I don't do that for everyone. In fact, I confess to worshipping you! I wanted your favor, it was why I always showed you my progress, so you would be pleased with me!"

After she had been knocked to the ground Zaheed jumped on her legs, feeling the bones of them crack out of place. "So, no Deborah, you didn't play the fool, I did!" And then by that moment, he witnessed a powerful flash of light. He had never seen something so bright, yet when it was over he saw nothing but darkness.

"What did you do to me!" Zaheed roared randomly punching where he felt her torso and targeted it. He jammed fists into her stomach with each blow getting harder and harder, ribs shattered. "What did you do!"




Lord Vinicius



Even after Zianro had extinguish Vinicius's ball of fire, he still wanted to fight, and not just the water lord. Vinicius wanted to rip apart every member he saw apart of the tribe. He doubted he could even trust the man who supposedly rescued him. Because by the sound of it, this man was once friends with Zianro. Yet he could not attack, after trying to conjure that fire before, he felt dizzy. His body was not probably well enough to start busting flames out yet, not after it had been deprived of so much. When they exited the palace, Vinicius felt blinded by the sunlight, he had no choice but to weakly squint his eyes. Thus he could barely see the rubble of the palace and what it took for Bellistrad to free him.

Well now, I suppose we should find a place to rest and get you healed both physically and spiritually. We wont have much time until this all spills over and you need to be prepared." On the horse, Vinicius was confused. He did not know what to believe, yet his mind started to go to one place, one idea- slaved. Sure, it did not feel like a slave deal, but Vinicius did not feel free. This random man comes to get him and tells him he needs to be prepared. Prepared for what? But one question only led to others, like How long was I gone? What has happened since I was gone? What is going to happen now?

"Correction, we have no time."

"Wait," Vinicius finally spoke up. "Who are you? And what do you want from me? I get the feeling you did not free you. You want me to do something, what is it?" Everyone was feeling something, everyone but Vinicius. Was it their powers, that told them of the violence among the earth tribe? Because if that was so, it gave reason why Vinicius felt nothing for his powers where in the same state as that of a young adolescent first learning to do something amazing with his fire. So Zianro really did damage him.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Mekaisto Orieska
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Bellistrad Indorial

After Bell had recovered from him emptying his stomach on the side of the road he stood back up straight and listened to Zotar's questions. It was then he realized that in his haste to get Zotar out of Lakeshore he hadn't explained anything to the battered man. He must have tons of questions more, so Bell grabbed the reigns and continued walking with the horse as he talked. "Well, let me start at the beginning. I don't know if you have realized this already, but Zaheed is now King of the Fire Tribe. He made a deal with Zianro to kidnap you so he could gain the power of kingship. Zianro also has another female fire exile, who I assume you know since they wanted to use her to get to you. Right now Zaheed is probably attacking the Earth Tribe, and I fear the worst for them."

As he walked along with the horse he suddenly felt extremely exhausted, but he kept walking even though the last twenty four hours had been some of his hardest pressed in a long time. "You have been a prisoner for almost the last month, if my memory does not deceive me. Maybe six weeks, not entirely sure since I only figured it out sometime after it happened. Anyway, I need to prepare you so you can defeat Zaheed and take back the throne. No pressure, eh?" Bell lets out a soft laugh to soften the mood as he goes down the path, before he suddenly realizes something important.

"Ah crap, I forgot to ask Zianro about the Fire King bracers. Ah well, we can always come back and ask about them. We will need to get that female exile after Zaheed is defeated anyway."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Had Deborah understood that what she said would enrage the king? Yes. Had she understood how angry he would be? Yes sort of. Had she understood that she now was in great danger? No. She wasn't even scared. The rational part of her brain had shut down completely. Now she was just angry because of the way she had been treated. The fact that he could see it in a completely different way was something never even would cross her mind.

When the first hit struck her cheek she wasn't prepared, it came like huge shock. And how powerful the king actually was were a surprise as well, the fact that she tumbled to the ground so easily... it was humiliating. Her confidence was based on her strength, without it she feared she would end up turning into what she once was before. Now she somehow seemed weak, at least compared to the king. She was just about to jump up from the ground and attack the man when he started talking, suddenly she felt even more confused.

Worshipping? He must be lying. She had never even noticed that or thought about it. It just seemed too strange so she couldn't accept it. Her confused mind didn't have the time to think more about what he said, the few seconds she had been dazed by what was said the disaster hit. At first she couldn't even understand what had just happened, but then when she tried to move. When she tried to stand up to defend herself. The pain. She didn't scream instead she let out a single squeak when she gasped.

She knew she had already lost and the only thing she could think of was that she was about to die. She knew she was going to die. Everyone that opposed the king died. That was something she knew very well and she had angered him either way. She didn't feel regret though, she could take it. There wasn't anything she would miss, she didn't have anything to live for. When lying there thinking about it she wondered why she had kept on struggling for so long just so she could live. Now it seemed like a waste.

But she wasn't fine with just dying. If the king would be the one to take her life she wanted to at least take something from him as well. But in this situation the only thing she would be able to take was one thing, but she guessed that it was a very dear thing. It wasn't his life or someone else’s that he cared for. But when she shut her eyes she couldn't help but grin. Her skin stopped glowing for a short while but just as it had stopped it was back again, but much stronger this time. It was blinding, like an explosion of light that radiated from her body. She knew that the king wasn't the only one that had gotten affected by the explosion, those close to them would be effected as well. At least if they were watching the fight at the moment. And she was happy because of it. Destroying those people’s lives. Taking away something everyone was extremely dependent on.

When the king got closer, clearly confused by what had happened and blind, Deborah breathed slowly. Sure on that he would kill her. But he didn't choke her. He didn't smash her head with a stone, he would probably not even need one to do it. He didn't even slash her with something sharp. Instead he punched her stomach. But not once or twice. At some point the pain got so unbearable that she just got disconnected from her body, her mind shut down. But it was too late because she had already experienced the most humiliating part of the evening. Deborah had felt how her eyes watered and how the liquid ran down her cheeks. She cried for the first time in many years.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


When Zaheed heard the sounds of crying from Deborah, he stopped, for the king did not want her dead. Thus, he slowly got off of her, not quite sure where he was position, but in the end he was on ground and on his feet. Soon approached him were soldiers that had been also blinded due to their closeness of the fight. They were confused, they asked Zaheed questions, but he was not in the mood to answer them.

"Shut up!" he hollered to the troops, thus dispatching silence among them. Though not for long because Zaheed then whistled for his friend. "Icarus!" Zaheed called his name, most people thought Zaheed crazy when he spoke to the bird, yet the creature always obeyed him, so he were not see much of lunatic for that reason. "Sound for the others."

"As you wish," the bird responded, though everyone else could only hear chirping. Icarus then soared up high to the red sky to then screech wildly, therefore bringing other soldier, though these ones being able to see. After Zaheed left, Shadowfen was reduced to nothing more but ashes, though the king did not just walk away from his new conquered land. Instead, slave camps were settled. There they would deal the slaves, but also train others to become forced warriors for the king.

Back in Murtovaara, Zaheed had Deborah locked away in a dark room constructed inside of the dungeon. She was shackled to the ground while lying also there on the ground. She remained still broken, for Zaheed would of course not bring her to healers and physicians, not after what happened back in Shadowfen.

He entered the room, a place only filled and immersed with darkness and nothing put. Even if Zaheed had his sight, he would not be able to see his hand in front of his face, not inside a room like such. But that was the type of setting he wanted Deborah trapped inside, he specifically commanded his men to do so. Because how frightening would it already be to be trapped inside, shackled against the floor with a man bloodthirsty like Zaheed, but now it was dark.

"I dismantled you...," Zaheed hung his words eerily in the air. His heavy foot steps were sounded and could even be felt through the floor pacing around her in circles. "Dismantled, it is word people use when they break things. But I don't see you as a thing. Because I don't get mad at things. But people... that's a different story..."

Zaheed stomped his foot, the one not abnormally large, against her body. He then shifted it to her neck when he felt it, putting all his pressuring there, bringing her to close ties of death by choking. "You mocked me! You blinded me!" Zaheed removed his foot to then replace it with his hand. And showing just as strong Zaheed was he pull her up from the ground, breaking the chains that kept her there, and threw her against the stone wall. "You could of left! Yet you thought me weak didn't you! Do you find me weak now?!" Zaheed's grasp was still on her neck, yet he was not strangling her as hard this time. "My eyes may not be of use, but I still see. I see what I feel! And I feel power, the energy of magic that courses through your veins. In the midst of darkness, I see a vessel of power."



Lord Vinicius


"Well, let me start at the beginning. I don't know if you have realized this already, but Zaheed is now King of the Fire Tribe." When Vinicius heard this, it was no surprise, of course Zaheed would take the throne once empty. In fact, Vinicius was happy for his brother that he had been crowned, yet Vinicius had no knowledge of the violence and warfare Zaheed and wrought while using the fire tribe people as his instruments of destruction. Vinicius only had none how much Zaheed yearned to be king one day, even when he acted like he was fine when discovering his younger brother was entitled instead.

"He made a deal with Zianro to kidnap you so he could gain the power of kingship. Zianro also has another female fire exile, who I assume you know since they wanted to use her to get to you. Right now Zaheed is probably attacking the Earth Tribe, and I fear the worst for them."

That was when Vinicius felt the instinct to be defensive, because he did not know why he should trust a stranger. Sure, the stranger may have led him out of the dungeon, but why? Perhaps it was a test, but only a test to see whether or not Vinicius was an able enough slave. And when the man made such claims against Zaheed, Vinicius felt hurt, that was his brother. He trusted Zaheed even though there was a rivalry between them. Throughout the first few days after their father's death, Zaheed was so positive and encouraging. To Vinicius, it all felt genuine, but Zaheed was always a good actor. Maybe he would of been one if not born unto a royal family, with eyes since childhood, set on a throne, on power. The man continued, he spoke of a female, however Vinicius had no idea who he was talking about. Vinicius knew no female exiles, so what, or more like, who was this man talking about? Vinicius was confused.

"You have been a prisoner for almost the last month, if my memory does not deceive me. Maybe six weeks, not entirely sure since I only figured it out sometime after it happened. Anyway, I need to prepare you so you can defeat Zaheed and take back the throne. No pressure, eh?"

Vinicius furrowed his brow, no, he was not going to be used, especially if that meant fighting his own brother for a complete stranger. So he did not let the man finish, he ceased him after that by saying, "Hold on-- stop, stop." Vinicius turned his body and dropped himself to the ground. "You accuse my brother of dealing with Zianro! Even if my brother wished to betray me, it would not be with an ignoramus like him. Putting charges like that against my own family does not settle well with me, especially when you want me to fight him. You did not even answer my question, who are you?"

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell stopped when Zotar got off his horse, and he turned to face him to listen to what he had to say. He was getting a little tired of people not believing him about Zaheed, but he guessed he should have expected it from Zotar since he was family with the now rouge king. Sighing, Bell walked the horse over to the side of the road and tied him off on a tree branch to let him graze in the grass and rumbled in his pack for something."I understand that you have to defend your family, but you will understand in time that he is not the same as before. I am actually surprised that you have not recognized me yet, but it has been many years. Would it help to say that I am a fire exile as well?"

Bellistrad brought out his blue crystal hookah and sat cross legged with it, loaded some marijuana into the top and sparked a blue flame on the tip of his finger. He lit the herbs and inhaled through the tube then blew out a cloud of smoke. "Bellistrad Indorial, at your service once again. Would you like a puff? There is a second tube here." As he sat there and smoked he hoped his low position would make Zotar more at ease, he was used to being in a position of power and he needed that feeling again after so long. He contemplated on the best way to get Zotar on the wagon with his idea, so to speak. It would be a task to itself, and he feared the only way to do it would be dangerous and hardy.

"If you do not believe me about Zaheed, why don't we just go to Shadowfen and see what is there for ourselves? If there are no threats by Zaheed there than I am wrong and you can go on your merry way, live your life as you see fit to on your own. That brings up a good question, what did you have in mind on doing once you got free of Lakeshore? I hope it was something constructive."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Deborah had never been good when dealing with darkness, even as she grew older she still felt as vulnerable when trapped inside it. She wasn't scared because of the shadows that could be seen in a normal room, she knew that they were only shadows. She was scared because of the things she couldn't see. Being trapped inside that dark room, chained to the ground, felt like the utter mockery. But there was no one that knew about her fear so she guessed that it was because of her power that they choose such a room, she was light and they gave her darkness. But she didn't care, as soon as the guards left the room she would breathe out a tiny light orb that would hover above her face until the door opened again.

That was just what she did this time as well, she would lie there staring into that fragile light source while wondering how she ended up this way. What she had done wrong in her life and why she wasn't already dead. She couldn't think of one reason for her to still be alive. When lying there at the ground with only the small light ball as company her life seemed even more meaningless then it had before she ended up in here. At some times she even wondered if she in fact already was dead and this was how death was, but her aching body spoke against that theory.

When the door opened she didn't think much of it and just continued to have her eyes closed while pretending she was sleeping. Not because the person in the room would think she was but because she wanted to fool herself. "I dismantled you..." If there was one voice Deborah never wanted to hear again it was that one. As soon as he spoke her eyes went wide open while she scanned the surrounding, trying to see where he was. She couldn't see him, but she heard him, she felt him in the room.

Suddenly more than before, when his foot pressed down on her body she just groaned in agony. But that was only the first time she felt it, as soon as it had found her neck she desperately tried to get her hands there to shove away the foot. The feeling of not being able to breathe was a lot scarier than she had imagined it to be, she could feel how her thoughts got more blurred by every second. As soon as the feet was gone she gasped after air, taking as much of it into her lungs as possible. Thankful that she still could do it. She wished to never have to endure it again, but that was easier to pray for then making it real. As the king’s hand closed around her throat Deborah couldn't do anything more than just be tossed around like a doll while coughing and groaning. Her body didn't let her fight back. She could only helplessly dangle in his grip while waiting for him to end it.

More groaning than actually talking Deborah still made an effort to not seem weak, "Yes, you seem so much weaker now than you did before. I respected you, now? No, not at all."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"Yes, you seem so much weaker now than you did before. I respected you, now? No, not at all."

"I to be the one weak?" Zaheed questioned, moving her from off the wall to now lifting her above ground. "You need light to see, you are blind in the dark, whereas I walk in. Let us see who is weak." Zaheed slung her down to the cold stone floor. "Stand, if you are strong. Prove that I am the weak one." Zaheed scoffed. "Oh that is right, you cannot see in the dark. Let me brighten up the room. Have a taste of my light..."

Zaheed surrounded the room with a wall of fire, it was one of his signature moves. The flames brought about light, yet he was not doing that to help Deborah, but so she could see herself lying on the ground unable to climb to her feet with legs broken. "Do you feel that heat, that fire. Oh, wait, you don't like that do you? Being shown your inabilities. Sure you cast a ball of light, blind me, but I can burn you." Zaheed approached Debora closer. "Yet, I rather not. You said I was weak? Why don't you get up and fight me then? Oh... that's right, I dismantled you."

Zaheed was done with his rage, now he was just being bitter, though he did not hate Deborah, because by her blinding him he actually felt stronger. Because no longer did he only sense magic energy, he saw it, blurs full of colors. Blurs being bodies, color being their element. He could see it from rooms ahead if he wanted to. But the sad thing was they weren't people, they were power.

"So, either you could just lie there struggling, or I can fix you. You don't the sound of that, don't you, Deborah? But what choice do you have? Either way you are still going to feel weak. Its your choice, but if you lay there, I will absorb your energy, it might even kill you, but I will be stronger." Zaheed continued to pace in circles around her. "I don't why you came here, but I will say this, your power, it is unique and with training it might prove to be useful. Killing you would be wasting it." Zaheed was done trying to gain approval. "Oh, what is this? Are you feeling used? We could of left on good terms. You did this, you asked for it."




Lord Vinicius


Bellistrad Indorial, Vinicius now remembered that his brother was actually after this guy. So, Bellistrad does seem like the person that would make false claims against Zaheed. Now, he was doubting he should stay with Bell, and thought perhaps the best idea may just to start running now while he was on the ground with his smoking contrapment Vinicius had never seen. Yet he didn't, because Vinicius feared me would be making a big mistake, and perhaps Bell was there for a purpose other than to free him.

"No, I don't know what that is," Vinicius refused the puff. "If I wish to build my body up to the stature it once was, I mustn't sit, I mustn't rest, and do what you are doing... whatever that it. But yes, let us go to Shadowfen, let it be you who rides the horse, and I the one pulling it. I need to gather my strength. Though to answer your question, if I ever escaped from Zianro's dungeon, I planned on killing him. Getting my revenge, why else do they call me Vinicius? You might be an exile, but may know in fire tongue, it means vengeance."

What Vinicius was about to ask may sound odd, yet that was one thing, one thought, and constantly popped into Vinicius's mind. "I am grateful that you had taken me from Zianro, yet I wonder am I you slave? Do I have a choice in this?"

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bellistrad half expected Zotar to run when he mentioned his name. That fact that he didn't was a good sign that Zotar would accept his journey to self-repair and self-exploration that would be required for him to gain victory over Zaheed. He nods in acceptance that Zotar did not wish to partake in his smoking session which was over none the less as all the plant matter burned out and Bell exhaled the last of the smoke contained within the blue crystal.

When Zotar mentioned that he was determined to build his body back up with hard work it surprised Bell. He had never seen the fire lord be so humble about himself that he would take a task just for the benefit of his own well being instead of some goal oriented work. It was a step in the right direction, and Bell would encourage it. Packing away his hookah and taking up his pack once more he climbed onto the horses back and pointed down the road."Than let us be off, oh Revenge the Mighty. If all goes well you can make true your namesake."

At the mention of a slave, Bell got rather confused but did not show it externally as he answered the question."I gave you freedom for you to choose your own path. If that path takes you away from me and out of my reach than so be it. Can't say I would pick any other path in your position though. I would rather live in a world that was not burning to the ground by a family members hands."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Deborah couldn’t judge what was the worst thing about this moment, everything seemed so equally bad. The pain because of earlier, how easily he just tossed her around like it was nothing or the humiliation. Once thrown down onto the ground again she just groaned, her ribs was killing her after the impact. Even if her legs wasn’t broken she doubted she would be able to stand up at that moment.

As the walls suddenly lit up by the hostile light of the flames Deborah closed her eyes, even though she had watched her own light orb inside this room her eyes couldn’t take the brightness. As he spoke she slowly opened them again while trying to scan the surrounding and the king himself, "Sure you cast a ball of light, blind me, but I can burn you."

"I’m not scared of fire, burn me all you want." Yes, she was still putting up the though act and wouldn’t stop any time soon. But his threat didn’t scare her the slightest, even if he was serious in what he said she still wasn’t even nervous about it. She was already in pain and she already had a past with the fire, she knew how it felt.

The king was right in his assumptions, Deborah didn’t like the sound of what he offered. She would rather lie there and keep on struggling in the dark with her orb than accept his help. "Its your choice, but if you lay there, I will absorb your energy, it might even kill you, but I will be stronger."

"You--," For the first time Deborah dropped the though act, she just stared at the king quietly, suddenly she understood why his appearance had changed so drastically. That was what he had done. "You actually succeeded with finding a way to absorb other’s energy? Not their heat but their powers… Oh… I thought it was impossible… I guess I was wrong."

Even if she thought the kings new discoveries was wrong, she couldn’t help but be fascinated by it. She had truly thought that it would be impossible to do something like that but he had actually found a way. Somehow she doubted that she wanted to know how he had discovered it. Neither did she want to discover what it felt like to get something like that ripped from her hands, how life would be without it.

"Oh, what is this? Are you feeling used? We could of left on good terms. You did this, you asked for it."

"No, I didn’t ask for this, you did. When things didn’t go your way or people didn’t say what you wanted them to say, when I didn’t say what you wanted to hear you stopped listening. Every time. You always got mad for being corrected. You pushed me away. The only thing I did was being honest with you. If you wanted to hear lies or have a mindless fool that just would nod and agree with everything you said you should have hired someone else. But fine, continue to put the blame on me and fool yourself. Leave me here to rot or kill me since you are so scared of hearing peoples true thoughts. I won't stop telling you about my point of view. When you are done with that you can just go back to playing with your mindless dolls that just nods at everything you say."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"Now let me tell you this, I have not a problem with correction," Zaheed's tone went back to aggravation rather than acting as if he was stronger and superior. "My life has been enthralled with correction..." Zaheed paused, and turned around as he stopped circling around her but instead walked away. Lowering his voice to a muttered he said, "My life, hm, no one knows about it, what lies behind these castle walls, underneath this crown and this hard, power-feeding body. Perhaps... perhaps no one should."

Once Zaheed finished speaking to himself, well half of it was to himself, the other half to Deborah, he turned around and stepped back to her. "But your mockery, that was different, that was unnecessary and waste of your breath. I've gotten to many measures... and much blood... to get to where I am as king, and that name deserves none of your mockery. What was this about me pushing you away? Do you jest? Remember at Shadowfen when I was speaking with you, you know before you pissed me off, well was it not you who asked if you could do something? It was apparent, you wanted to get away from me... No, wait, are you talking about when I did not see you for weeks and weeks? What more do you think I was doing?--"

Zaheed stopped, he knew there was a better way to put it, a better way to put all of this together. So Zaheed ceased the fire that surrounded them, he didn't need that. No more games, no more intimidation, no more trying to domineer himself, nothing but an honest confess. "Do you recall when I first showed you how I could attract and detract heat from bodies, and how I messed up and transferred so much of my heat that I collapsed to the floor, shivering and shaking. At that moment I felt weak, so blithering weak. I hate being weak, but what I hate even more is being weak to those I sought to impress."

Zaheed let another pause go before he continued, "Sure you may scoff when I say I wanted to impress you, but just think back to the beginning. When I first met you I opened up a glorious vision, told you that you would be fighting with a god. Because that is what I wanted to be, a god, indestructible, undefeatable, and immune to weakness, enough so that you would be amazed with me. Then I gave you a room, sure it was in the dungeon, but I tried to dress it with all splendor that I could, even said if you had a problem with it or needed anything more that you could send letter to my servants.

I had reason to not put you above in the castle itself, because above the surface, that's where all the eavesdroppers and fools that can't mind there own business roam. No one thinks to look at what lies underneath. But I wanted to keep my things secret, and I entrusted those secrets with you. But back to the fact that I didn't see you for weeks, it was because I was doing my all to come back to you strong, so I would not be on the floor again helpless. But now... now I see that is what I've done to you..."



Lord Vinicius


So Vinicius was not a slave, so he had choice. And though he did not believe Bell, Vinicius still wanted to see for himself what lied of Shadowfen. So Zaheed supposedly was raging war against the earth tribe, as he could recall Zaheed was the one that preferred they not. Therefore, one could imagine in Vinicius's shoes it seemed odd for his brother to do so.

When Bellistrad got upon the horse, Vinicius grabbed the rope and began leading the horse, hoping he was going the right way as he was following signs and trails that committed guidance to the earth tribe. "Do you know how long it will take for us to reach Shadowfen?" After his question had been answered Vinicius said nothing more, and did only what he knew mattered at the moment and it was getting to his destination. He had a goal in mind and was not going to stop for anything. That was how it always was, commit to a responsibility and surrender to nothing else- that was his determination, and what others called being stubborn.

He went hours without stopping, no matter how much his body ached, or when his feet and legs screamed for less, he did not care. But even his carelessness could not stand a chance to his body when it collapsed. With Vinicius on the ground, he tried pushing himself off, but when he did get back on his feet again he fell. "I must keep going," he spoke out with a tone of anger frustration of how fragile his body over time had become, with how much it was damaged by his enemies.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial
Bellistrad felt his horse sway as Zotar began pulling it along with his walk. Zotar's first question was a simple one to answer, as Bellistrad had traveled between Shadowfen and Lakeshore many times before. "If we were going full speed, two days. Walking it will more than likely take at least four." Bell was content with the silence that Zotar kept going for awhile so Bell continued smoking his hookah on the horse's back as they went. He also took out a book from his pack that showed a map of Imos made by a fellow traveler like himself. The only part of the book he contributed to was the part on the Fire Tribe. The author traded a copy of the finished book in exchange for his information on the tribe to put in it.d

When Zotar collapsed Bell looked up from the book and supposed it was a good place to make a camp. Jumping off his horse, Bellistrad began unpacking everything onto the road. "We will camp here for the night." Bellistrad lit a sharp flame onto the lit of his first two fingers and made a hot blade. Bell cleared a spot on the side of the road free of brush and debris using this blue fire blade and started setting up two mat rolls along with a campfire. After a half hours work Bell had everything set up with a campfire in the middle already burning and the horse tied near some tall grass not far away. Bell broke out some bread and soup from a flask, heated it with his fire, and passed it around to Zotar."Eat, you'll need it. I can get you some meat as well if you want it. I don't eat meat anymore myself."

Bell smoked his hookah for awhile longer as he took watch so Zotar could get his rest, and Bell could sleep on the horse anyway. The night was not silent unlike the day, as the sounds of nocturnal creatures filled the air. It was all calming to Bellistrad, but he wondered what Zotar made of it all.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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The more Deborah listened to the king the more confused she got, she wasn't sure anymore what she should think. She had no idea what the man thought or felt at the moment, if he was angry or not. The tone of his voice and even the choice of words they varied so much. One moment he could sound angry and the next he almost sounded nice? Or he actually sounded like he had good intentions.

"But back to the fact that I didn't see you for weeks, it was because I was doing my all to come back to you strong, so I would not be on the floor again helpless. But now... now I see that is what I've done to you..."

"I am not helpless!" She was upset, not angry, being described as helpless just made her upset. Desperate to prove him wrong, that she still could defend herself even though he had broken the bones in her body, she tried to show it. She was actually struggling, she tried to get up from the ground. She would be satisfied with just being able to sit up to prove that she wasn't helpless. After just one try she gave up after pained sounds, he had been right, she was unable to get up this way.

What hurt the most was admitting that she indeed was helpless on the floor, that she was weak this time. That he had won, just admitting the defeat inside her head to only herself troubled her. Admitting it out loud was even harder. So the fact that the bitter tone in her voice was back was not so strange. It was not because she was angry at him or anyone else, she was mad at herself, "Fine! Perhaps I am a little... helpless. You are right!" After her confession Deborah went back to just being silent, too annoyed to say anything more.

One thing Deborah couldn't stand was the fact that she had gotten herself into this mess, because it was true that she had started the fight. But it was simply because he had trigged her anger and Deborah was a possessive person deep down. Even though she had been scared of the king that night it didn't stop those feelings, because she still thought of herself as the only one that deserved to know what he was doing and had discovered - all the time. The fact that he had avoided her for such a long time hadn't amused her at all and before this moment she hadn't even known what he had been doing. Then he had felt like dismissing her after all that and she had just not been able to keep her mouth shut.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"Fine! Perhaps I am a little... helpless. You are right!"

Thus Deborah then admitted so. Zaheed liked to be right, it does better for him than being wrong, well it was what he had hoped in most situations. But he could understand why she would not wish to state so, because though Deborah was not a full-bloodied fire bearer, yet she has lived in the tribe her whole life. And within the tribe, there has always been a sense of determination and persistent to never admit to weakness, to never surrender even if it means a better chance of survival. Zaheed had it, consuming power to claim strength yet retreating from weakness. But also did Zotar have the same type of trait. Zaheed then thought of his brother, perhaps the most stubborn person he ever met. He would of never accepted a surrender. The king wondered what Zianro did to him, but as he could recalled Icarus informing him that Bell equipped a plan to free him. Zaheed would like to know how that went.

Zaheed was considering that he put her bones back into place now by himself, it would be extremely painful, yet that was what he was thinking of doing when he was enraged. Yet now, he felt that to be sadistic, and sure he was a megalomaniac, but not sadistic. "I will summon guards to bring you to healers. I am letting you know that if you still wish to leave, the opportunity for that is still present. Yet, if you do not, I will meet you soon." Zaheed then had to guess where the door was as he felt around for it, because though he could sense people, that was it, only life forces, not objects nor structures. Same thing went for a good amount of his soldiers, but they will still be useful, Zaheed was sure of it. So, in between the time he just had departed from Deborah and the time he will be meeting her again, Zaheed planned for his next attack. Without his eyes, it was as if he could feel himself become stronger when it came to the intellect, though Zaheed was already a man to be identify as clever when he was not mad with power. Without his quick wits and cunning behavior he may have not made his way thus far as king. But not, bearing not a single ounce of strength he had to be more thoughtful of each step he took physical and mentally.

After working upon his strategies to overtake the air tribe, he went to train his blind soldiers. He would have to be harder on them, to break a quite impactful hindrance. But Zaheed was determined to make those men his strongest, perhaps the blind warrior will one day because some of a myth, because there was one thing Zaheed was certain, they were going to be legendary. There was not weakness that Zaheed believe could beat him, well, that was what most fire tribe members had in mind.

When he finished training the soldiers, Zaheed walked his way as best he could to where Deborah was taken so that healers could tend to her wounds. Deborah had enough time to leave if she wished so from since Zaheed last had spoken to here. Yet, the question was, did she stay? Zaheed opened the door...



Lord Vinicius


"We will camp here for the night."

And though Vinicius wished to go on, Bell thought otherwise, it of course being in best benefit for Vinicius. Vinicius in the end agreed to the idea of camp, "Well, alright, this will be the first time I get to sleep lying down, instead of hanging from chains." Yes, event he concept that he would be touching the dirt as he rested, that gave him joy. Since he had been ripped away from his castle and robbed of what he once treasured and needed, even the smallest things sparked a type of happiness he never felt even when having those past luxuries.

While Bell worked on clearing the campground Vinicius was going to make himself useful though he was exhausted and tired. Thus, he ventured out but not to far to some trees, there he scouted for branches because he did not have a blade to cut down the tree itself. With the many different sized branches he drug them back to the camp ground. Vinicius then built two small shelters one for himself and the other for Bell. Even though Vinicius just met the man, a man that he did not entirely trust, he was still going to in a way, look after and take care of him just as he did to Vinicius. It was because of his many missions in the military with his father, because during those years serving as a warrior for his people, he learned that what holds any army together is the brotherhood bred, because without unity there is division and with division there is disaster. So Vinicius learned with whoever he is traveling with that he cannot declare a threat treat them as a brother until so does the time come that he can decree differently.

After the half hour, he sat with Bell, still thinking about his blue fire. That was different, though Vinicius never liked the color blue, though he has blue eyes himself. It was for that is what the water tribe uses to identify themselves, just as the fire tribe uses colors like red, orange, and yellow.

"Eat, you'll need it. I can get you some meat as well if you want it. I don't eat meat anymore myself."

Grabbing the bread and flask of soup Vinicius responded, "Meat-- Hunting, may help me train my combatable skills, though to really consider it, hunting is not like fighting. No man looks at a hunter and thinks of him as a soldier. Because hunters hunt animals and soldiers fight men, man and animals are different. Animals kill to survive, it is one reason for them, but for a man, it could be a thousand. Heh," Vinicius chuckled slightly and then turned his head briefly to Bellistrad and then back at the fire. "My... my father told me that when I was little boy. I wanted to go hunting instead of training. Because hunting was quiet and still, yet in training there was a lot of yelling and running and fighting and... well.. I should of just been happy with anything he told me. I would do anything in a heartbeat if he could just be with me now."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell sat by the fire and listened to Zotar speak of his past, opening up to Bellistrad in the simplest of ways. This was good knowledge that would help Bell heal Zotar of his pain, for the past is the first place that one must heal. Bell turned his body to Zotar after he finished his meal and took on a cross-legged meditation pose. "Sit like I do. I am going to show you something." Bell charged his lowest root chakra, the red chakra aligned with survival and fear. The root chakra was most powerful in Earth benders but if used correctly anyone can master it. Bell sent some of his root chakra energy through the ground to Zotar and started charging it for him.

"I want you to focus on your energy at the base of your spine. Tap into it like you were about to fire bend. Sort through the emotions that come from there, and tell me what you feel." This was the first step of the training Bellistrad would systematically reveal to Zotar to help heal him. After Zotar began concentrating on his root chakra Bell felt his aura fluctuate with his root chakra churning. "Feel your fear that you impose on yourself, and let it go. Forgive yourself and let it fall from you." He did not expect Zotar to be able to truely understand what he was saying or to complete the task at this time, but the attempt was enough of a start. If he did end up understanding this first time alone than it would be a large gap skipped for them and would save them time in their progress.

After the energy session, Bellistrad said nothing more and simply laid down to sleep and have his lucid dreams. He imagined that Zotar might have some strange dreams after altering his own chakra system as well. Whatever was going to happen with Zotar, Bell went off into his own world for a time as he slept, resting for the day to come.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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The fire tribe didn't possess the same healing abilities as those from the Earth tribe, they couldn’t heal by just touching someone. But they were still skilled in the original ways to cure the sick. Which in Deborah's case meant to let the body heal itself after they had fixed so the bones would heal correctly. So even though she had been moved from the cell and wasn't chained anymore she was still stuck where she was.

As time went by and Deborah continued to be stuck in bed just waiting for the day when they would tell her she would be able to walk again. To have her legs strapped into the splints was not that comfortable and days passed, weeks as well. Or she thought so, she had lost count of time. She just knew that by the end of it she had the feeling of thousands ants crawled around inside her body, she just wanted to get up from bed and move around the room again.

When she finally was allowed to be without the splints and walk it was not as easy as she remembered it. She had been handed crutches to make it even possible for her to walk but even with them it was a lot harder then she had thought. When she was trying her hardest she still only could limp forward. It was frustrating. Every small step she took made her more frustrated, what was she supposed to do now? She couldn't even walk properly and it would continue to be like this for some time forward. But she spent most of her days practicing even though the healers told her she should take it easy in the beginning.

Of course she knew that she was allowed to leave whenever she wanted to do so. But where was she supposed to go? Deborah didn't leave, she waited once more. She liked to think that she was a woman of honor. She had promised to work under the king and since he had withdrawn from dismissing her she decided keep that promise. So when the king finally decided to visit she was still working on her walking. But as soon as she noticed him she stopped immediately, "Oh... You are here. If I've known you would come here I would've made myself a bit more presentable... Or at least avoided letting you see this."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Walking in Zaheed saw the healers and made a gesture with his head that signaled for them to leave. Zaheed preferred things to be private. You never know what stories can be spread and information twisted inside the walls of a castle.

"Oh... You are here. If I've known you would come here I would've made myself a bit more presentable... Or at least avoided letting you see this."

"See what?" he asked, confused to why she would mention him see anything. The only form of sight or really vision Zaheed had left, was to sense life forces. But other than that it was nothing, just darkness and blobs which were people, their energy. Zaheed stroked his beard, trimming it would not be easy of course blind. And he wouldn't want a servant with a knife anywhere near his face. Growing out will have to do for now.

After an awkward pause sunk in Zaheed decided to speak out, “Your legs… how are they?” Zaheed cared to know how much damage he was capable of though his intentions were not kill her. Death is not always the best option for a situation, yet Zotar always thought otherwise. Zaheed thought his brother too ignorant to not allow himself to be led by his emotions. One day that will hurt, and hurt more than anything else ever had.

“My intentions were not to kill you, my intentions were to make you suffer,” he was honest at least. “Crushing your legs and leaving you crippled was also not of my intentions.” Why Zaheed did not think to leave her legs unusable it was perhaps because making someone cripple cannot be undone, so if he did do that it may be a mistake, one he might regret and never be able to fix. Because now, her bones could be put back into function, yet his eyes could never be cure. Did he ever regret that he did not make Deborah cripple yes, but he did not let his emotions guide him this time.



Lord Vinicius


Vinicius did as Bellistrad had told him, whatever this was, he was going to trust him. Though, hours pervious, Vinicius felt uncomfortable, but he knew he had to get over that if he wanted to know who Bell really was- his strengths, skills, weakness, fears. So in the cross-legged sitting position, he continued to listen to Bell.

"I want you to focus on your energy at the base of your spine. Tap into it like you were about to fire bend. Sort through the emotions that come from there, and tell me what you feel."

This was quite odd for him, he never heard of this time of method for anything. What was he trying to do? Extract information from him, it did not seem so, because what would someone want to do with his feelings? That's not valuable information to Vinicius, so Bell could not be a spy. Then, what was this for?

"W-what I feel?" Vinicius questioned. "I... I feel like I need to fight. Yes, you told me to tap into my spine like I were to fire bend. And when I create fires I burn things, that's what fire's about- burning." Yes, he did not know at all how to answer that question. Was he suppose to say something deep and sentimental, Vinicius did not know that. Sure Bell told him to sort through his emotions, but all he could feel was a sense of instinct to be defensive. So that was what he did.

"Feel your fear that you impose on yourself, and let it go. Forgive yourself and let it fall from you."

"Fear? I-I'm not scared though," Vinicius claimed, though he was in denial, even trying to convince his own self that he did not feel the touch of fear. Of course he was scared, he did not know what was happening, but he suspected Bell was talking about his past. There was many things Vinicius wanted to say to Bell that night, like the past is the past and why does he want to go digging up what can't be undone.

That night, Vinicius pondered what Bell had said, Forgive yourself and let it fall from you, he was talking about the death of Vinicius's father, that was what Vinicius gathered though at first he had hoped that was not what he was speaking of. Vinicius did not want to think about forgiving himself, he did not want to dwell on the impossible. Because his mind steered with another direction with images- flashbacks of that night. Much like this one it was peaceful, calm with the sound of a warm crackling fire. Then suddenly they were ambushed, no they were trapped by cages of roots and thorns conjured by earth benders. Vinicius, with all he could of done, he burned through the plants that entangled him, but there was just so many of them. And by the time he finally made his way out and to his father, it was too late.

First struck the feeling of fear, then of regret, now anger. And Vinicius was never one to bottle his anger, not like his brother. His anger overflowed far to much to be contained. So he slipped away during the middle of the night where he found himself a pile of stones and boulders. There he struck the surfaces of the rock, over and over feeling the cartilage of his knuckles crumble with the skin bleeding. It hurt, it hurt bad, but nothing hurt more then being trapped. It was sad, because now though he was free, Vinicius still feel the chains around his wrists, the thorns surrounding him, with water like ice lashing against his freezing flesh. This was worse than being taken captive by Zianro, because now Vinicius faced that he created his own prison.

When the pain had gotten unbearable he yelled out in anger and frustration as he fell to the ground, griping a hold onto his bloody hands with knuckles opened and swollen.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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"See what?"

"Wait... You're still blind?" The response surprised Deborah, when she had seen him the last time she had been certain that he would still be unable to use his eyes but the fact that he still was unable to use them was not something she had ever considered. It was not like she had been in control of the explosion that time, it had been a spur of the moment type of thing, and when she wasn't in control she wasn't able to control the outcome either. So the fact that the damage was permanent did come like a shock.

Even though the king acted as if he still was blind Deborah had a hard time accepting it so when he went silent she made her way over to him just to get a closer look. It was not like she knew how to see if a person was blind or not, but she still wanted to see it closer. She had never actually seen for herself what her power did to people. When she finally realized or at least agreed to believe that the king indeed was blind she almost flinched away from him, "Oh... Sorry about that... or something. It seems to vary a bit, the effect I mean. Sometimes it's permanent and other times people regain their vision. I was certain that you had regained it as well... With your ability and all that. Um..."

If the king hadn't regained his vision it meant that his men hadn't done it either, even though Deborah should feel bad for doing something like that she didn't. Or she felt bad for blinding the king she was supposed to help - even though she was fired when it happened. But the tribe's army she didn't care even the slightest about, it could as well be complete strangers.

“Your legs… how are they?”

"Better, I'm just glad they don't force me to stay in bed anymore. I can't say I like being this way, limping forward like some old lady, but I guess I deserve this. So I'm not going to complain any more than this." At least not so he could here. Deborah had no intention to stop being angry about it inside her own mind, it wouldn't hurt anyone and clearly most things she thought about was things she disliked. Which probably was the reason to why she never stopped being so grumpy all the time. "So, why are you here?"

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Zianro Azura Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún Character Portrait: Mekaisto Orieska
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Bellistrad Indorial

When morning came, Bell came out of his dreams and sat up inhaling the air. He immediately started performing Tai-Chi and energy flow movements similar to that of a water bender. His breathing was controlled and the growing sunlight made his hair shine bright blue almost like his flames. Now fully awake, Bellistrad looked around the camp and saw no sign of Zotar. He did not expect him to have gone far and scanned the area with his heat sensing ability. He found a large heat mass not far away and started for it.

He found Zotar asleep on the ground next to a blood stained rock and his knuckles scabbed over. Bell shook his head at the scene and laughed, hoping he had gotten his emotions out of his system. Kicking at Zotar's feet to wake him, Bell turns around to head back and wait for Zotar to return. Back at the campsite Bell starts to pack up things for their travel. He left the structures that Zotar had made for other travelers in potential need of shelter.

Once Zotar had returned and the campsite cleaned Bellistrad did one last thing for the road ahead. Since he would not be in contact with the ground he instead put his palms to the earth for several minutes, taking in as much energy from the ground as he could. Earth benders could take more energy from the earth than he could but his root chakra was trained enough to do so for him. Now charged, Bell got on his horse and let Zotar take the lead same as yesterday. "When we get to a fork in the road, take the left path. I would rather not go to Murtovaara just yet."

Bell soon fell asleep on the horse again, his book in his lap like last time open with pages flipping in the light wind. His energy was elsewhere as he put full faith in his safety to Zotar.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


"I first wished to know of your condition, and now I hear you can limp. That is better then not walking at all. But getting onto my second reason to coming here, I do not know where to go from here with my powers." Yes it was true, Zaheed was unsure of what of goals and potentials he had left for this new ability for him. It was because he had done the impossible, what he would never think could happened did. Now what?

"Thus, I now believe I will focus my mind on other matter such as conquering other nations and strengthening my troops. As I had said before Shadowfen, you did indeed fulfill what I had planned when I hired you to guide me." Guide Zaheed never put it like that, but it made sense now and was actually quite beautiful that way, knowing that Deborah has the ability to conjure light, bringing him out of the dark lack of magical knowledge. "Hm, Deborah how do you feel about being an agent? Of course you will have no ties to the military, so you won't have to worry about that. But instead picture yourself as a rogue, perhaps even accompanied with other ragtag warriors."

Yes, though Zaheed was once a general he did not completely rely or put faith into his soldiers, because there are some things troops won't do. No, they care too much about honor and glory, yet with the right price mercenaries will do anything. "Now most kings do not value mercenaries yet, I am not like most kings. And besides, I believe you will fit right in, most sellswords are looked down upon for their past and unusual powers, therefore they cannot never find a job as a soldier. But no matter, its perhaps more fun as a mercenary, less rules."

Zaheed believed Deborah will heal in a matter of days, or even perhaps in just one week. He has seen soldiers reeking with death, yet they still manage to bounce back up and fight.



Lord Vinicius


He was awaken with knuckles stinging and hand throbbing in the morning by Bell. To his surprise Bell did not make much of a reaction. But instead they gathered up what they had and left the camp with Vinicius like before taking the ropes and leading the horse. But before they left Vinicius tore off fabric from the cloak given to him so that he could use it as bandages for his bloody hands.

When we get to a fork in the road, take the left path. I would rather not go to Murtovaara just yet."

"I was not planned on it, I was headed for Shadowfen." Yes, Vinicius wanted to make it there first, he wanted to see if this was true, his brother attacked the earth tribe. During the journey Vinicius walked many steps through hills and streams he went, though stopped when he felt his body aching for him to quench his thirst. He tried ignoring it long enough but had gotten to the point of staggering steps and dizzy vision.

Stopping, Vinicius did not actually want to dip his hands into the pond he approached, he felt sick when just looked at water ever since Zianro's dungeon. But it was what his body wanted, and if Vinicius wanted to survive then he had to listen to it. So Vinicius cupped his hands together for a drink. And as he submerges his fingers, he could see the blood from his hands mix into the liquid. While doing so Vinicius asked Bell, "How much father did you believe we are from Shadowfen?"

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bellistrad woke to the sound of water nearby, and slowly perked up. He adjusted his book and put it away for the moment as he looked up at the sky. It was a little after noon already by the suns positioning. He looked around and found they were nearing Airedale. They had not yet gotten to the second cross path, which leads to either Airedale or on a north path to Shadowfen. Bellistrad stood up straight in his saddle, his feet balancing on the leather as he looked far ahead on the trail to judge their distance.

He only noticed that Zotar was tired when he stopped and went for a nearby pond and asked his question. "At this pace we should arrive a little sooner than I thought, maybe two days after this one." Bell started stripping off his clothes when Zotar wasn't looking and jumped over his head to dive into the pond with a whoop and splash. Unlike most other firebenders, Bell could suppress his fire nature enough so that water did not hurt him for a short time. He was unable to bend fire with any strength while this occurred however.

Popping his head out of the water Bell squirted a stream of water out of his mouth at Zotar playfully."I think this is a great place to rest for awhile. Why don't we fill up water skins and have a bite to eat before we go on, eh?" He swam around in the pond for a while longer than exited and dried off with a burst of fire across his body. He re-clothed himself and took out some dried food, giving some to Zotar and eating some himself before filling up their water skins and canteens. He had a quick smoke before getting back on the horse and thinking about where they would be going next.

"Now, there is another fork about a mile up the road. Go down the northern path on the right and we will be clear all the way to Shadowfen. Watch out for fire soldiers, I don't know how many will be in the area."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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The king visited her just to ask her to turn into a mercenary? It was probably a good thing that the king was still blind because she was making faces as he talked, the whole mercenary thing was not something she had ever considered doing. Sure, she liked the thought of getting paid for something. And that something would most likely be something she was good at doing. But mercenary? He couldn't be serious. At least she knew now that she indeed was fired. But what was the point with him coming here just to give her suggestions on what else she could do?

The more the king spoke of it the more annoyed Deborah actually got, it was the choice of words, his speech just made her even more certain that mercenaries was the lowest scums of the earth. Dishonored. The worst kind, the lowest beings that walked on the earth. And he wanted her to become one of those. But what was she supposed to do? She was still homeless and unemployed. So if the king wanted her to do that she would turn into one of those and leave Murtovaara. She was supposed to honor the promise she had made and if this was the way then fine.

"So a mercenary, huh? I guess I could do that or something..." But she wouldn't be excited about it, not even slightly. Not after the way he put it. And this talk about her working together with others. It was simply not her thing, but now... apparently that was what he wanted. "I will leave Murtovaara tonight and start with this new way of life. Something else you want to add before I get going? I don't really have anything to return to or get before I leave so I figured the sooner the better. I don’t have any reason to stay here any longer."

While she talked she limped over to the bed once more and sunk down with a heavy sigh once she was done. The new information gave her a headache. If she had been slightly annoyed before it was nothing to how she felt now. She was in an extremely bad mood, forehead decorated by deep wrinkles as she stared down at her hands. Just the thought of even approaching such a group made her so irritated that she felt like punching the king for only asking. But even when being this angry she knew it would only mean bad things this time. So she only sat there and growled on the inside.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed could tell Deborah was not much happy or even in the slightest form happy about his new idea. Yet, there was a chance he did not say it the right way. So as she may her way ever so slowly to her bed grumbling, Zaheed continued speaking, "Hm, perhaps I did not say it quite as so it should be put. They are not actually mercenaries, well, I guess in a way they could be called that, but a better word to identify them would be assassin." Zaheed did not know if that made things better or not, but he was being clear and honest what type of people he was talking about. "They of course all work alone, and by they, I mean my three other assassins, each one has a different target or general task they fulfill each with such secret information." Zaheed's voice was now lower, he was speaking of something he would not typical want eavesdroppers to hear.

"But now, I have a new target..." He of course talking about his brother, yet she did not know, she did not know anything of what he had done to gain the throne. But soon she will. "It is going to be one of the most important matters at hand. Let's just say that this target determines whether or not I stay as king." Zaheed would be putting a lot of faith in Deborah to be hiring her for a type of mission as such, but he felt she could get things done without having pity emotions or patriotism get in the way. "Though I understand you have never had rogue training. No worries, I will try to train you all I can in a matter of three days." It will be quite a task, especially knowing that Zaheed is a warrior not a rogue, yet he has trained thousands and thousands of men and women of the tribe in his military career. Besides he would get a little help from a friend.

"However before we start that, I will meet you in your room once you inform a guard you are on your way. Because there are things I must tell you in a much more private setting." Zaheed made a small bow with his head before taking his exit. He already started thinking about the words he would gather, all the secrets he would tell.



Lord Vinicius



Vinicius watched as Bellistrad fully submered himself into the body of water, something Vinicius would never dared to do, and really never has done. Yes, it was true, for even when he decides to maintain a quality hygiene he does not bathe but instead is showered with water and perfumes, but never does he dip himself into the water. After their break, the two, headed back to the trail.

"Now, there is another fork about a mile up the road. Go down the northern path on the right and we will be clear all the way to Shadowfen. Watch out for fire soldiers, I don't know how many will be in the area."

"Soldiers, huh?" Vinicius did not want to discovered yet and if it weren't for his brands he would not be. But because he had ripped part of the arms from the cloak for bandages, his marks shown. Vinicius stopped, "Is there anything I could use to cover my brand marks, I prefer not to be found out yet."

Though Vinicius since he was taken, had the urge and the ever most desire to run back home, he wasn't, he wanted to be wise about his decision. However most in circumstances Vinicius proves to be impulsive when it comes down to making choices. It seemed his time as Zianro's prisoner has matured Vinicius. He had plenty of time rotting away and thinking about life and death. Now it was time to put those thoughts to the test.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell had not thought about the brand marks on Zotar's wrists, but luckily he had a solution. Bell rummaged through his pack behind him for several minutes, shifting things around as he went until he pulled a pair of leather bracers that would perfectly cover Zotar's scars. He tosses them to Zotar and turns himself back around on the horse after shutting his pack and brings his hookah around with him in his lap.

"I think we should cut your hair as well. All that time in the prison has let it get long and tangled." He let these words float between them as he place his usual herbs into his hookah and smoked as they moved. The fork was easy enough to see when they came to it, with a small sign faded from years of disrepair. The right path was slightly overgrown, but not hard to travel by. Bellistrad got a little excited when they traveled about 3 hours down the right path.

"We are about to enter the great forest of Shadowfen. It is going to get very dark very fast." Almost on command, they rounded the next bend and bear witness to a wall of giant trees at least three times taller and wider than the ones they had been traveling through before. As they moved under the first branches the shadows that covered them was almost like a silk cloak that covered everything around them. Several places ahead of them had small streams of light coming into the forest like godly pillars of salvation where certain plants grew around.

Bellistrad lit his raised hand ablaze in a orb of fire around it to shine into the darkness. This light still only illuminated the traveling pair, their horse, and anything within ten feet of them. It was enough to travel by however."This is strange. Normally the tribesmen of Earth would be watching us right now, but I don't sense them nearby."

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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The more information she received the more uncertain she got, everything just seemed to get more and more entangled. More confusing. The headache got stronger and stronger and by the end of his speech she had covered her face with her hands, just trying to listen to what he said. Her position in the tribe just seemed to get more and more diffuse, she couldn't really understand what was going on around her. First she got dismissed, thrown into jail, getting told she was supposed to become a mercenary and now she was supposed to be an assassin? Of all things in the world it had to be an assassin.

When the king had left she didn't make any attempt to get out of bed. Instead she let her torso fall backwards and land softly on the bedsheets. All the new information made her tired, not physically but mentally. She wasn't sure how she was supposed to feel about anything anymore. There had been too many emotions shifting places since all of this started. And it was wearing her out. So she just lied there and stared up into the ceiling for a long time, letting out one sigh after another.

When all of her frustration had slowly been released by every puff of air she let out between her lips she finally stood up and limped out of the room. One small part of her wanted to just stroll right out of Murtovaara without listening to the king or doing what he wanted. But then there was that larger part of her that said it was wrong. So in her slow pace she made her way towards the castle once more. Dreading the moment when she would step inside those gates once more.

The thoughts was still moving in such a fast pace that she almost couldn't understand what she had just pondered about but there was one that returned to her over and over. The thought of her suddenly being assigned as an assassin. She knew there must be better people that would suit such a title much better. It didn't matter how much she tried to wrap her head around it she just couldn't, the thought was too out of line. The second thought that occupied her mind was about how she was supposed to just walk right into the castle. She had made the king blind. She had made soldiers blind as well. She was fired, or sort of fired. Why would she be allowed inside the castle?

Strangely enough she was, she had been jailed just a moment ago but now she was just allowed to simply walk right past the guards. She couldn't help but feel as if it was a trap. Everything was a trap. She was so stuck in this mess, she wasn't able to get out of it anyway she tried to. It was a enormous death trap, whatever she did would end up with her dead. She couldn't trust anyone anymore and it bothered her.

Once down in her old room she sat down at the table, drumming her fingers onto the wood while waiting. She had informed one of the guards like the king had told her to, but for how long she had to wait this time was still a mystery. It wouldn't surprise her if she would have to sit down there and wait for weeks again.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed entered Deborah's quarters, though this time he brought guards with him. It was not that he needed soldiers to defend him, no he was very much capable enough to handle himself. Yet, the king instead wished to send a message- that he was the one with advantages here, he was the superior. Ever since what happened in Shadowfen the question of whether not he could trust Deborah still lingered in her head. But why dispose of a tool when you can instead fix and put it into function? Tools, weapons, things, that all he saw others as since his sight had been taken away, all he can see now is power, energy, not faces, not expressions, just power. And he had an appetite for power, though he also had self-control. And he had not made the decision to drain Deborah of hers.

Once he was actually inside the room he waved off his guards, he needed privacy, and only wanted to show his control for mere quick moments. He wanted for all of the men and women to leave before speaking, "Now... I give you the choice, do you wish to become an assassin? I do have another job for you. Though its actually you keeping your old one, well you would still be my mage. Though not in the same way..."

Zaheed started to do his thing again where he paced around Deborah. It was extremely uncomfortable for he did it in a way a lion stalks in a circle around his prey. But Zaheed liked the thought that he showed he was the apex predator here. "So Deborah you know how I said when you were inside your cell, that if you were not going to get up, if you were merely just going to lie there that I would absorb your power. Well, I can still do that now, but I give you the benefit of a choice. Become an assassin and face a path that may prove foreign even uncomfortable for you or.... Hold out your hand."

Of course he did not need her to hold out her hand in order for him to feed off her magic source, but he enjoyed giving her the illusion that she had power while also showing his superiority. Zaheed stopped, not sure if he was facing her or not. "I promise... I won't kill you. Make your decision now... or you know what, perhaps it be better I do this."

Zaheed focused on the glowing light he saw through all the other darkness of his blind vision. There he transferred a very small amount of his energy source to hers. "Did you really believe I was going to devour you? Or make you an assassin? I strengthened you, I can do continue to do so, when on my side, perhaps not specifically in that way. But I'm sure you get the point. Your fate is determined by how you answer this question, Deborah what is it you wish to become? If there be any position you want, say it now."




Lord Vinicius


They approached what was suppose to be earth tribe territory, but he did not see any of their tribesmen. What if Zaheed was a bad man, a monster? No, Vinicius rejected his mind to make such thoughts, he loved his brother, and believed Zaheed felt the same way. But what if Bell was right, that Zaheed basically sold him off to Zianro. Could Vinicius find anywhere in his heart to forgive him?

"We must be stealthy about this, because if my brother's men are here they will take fast notice of two wandering travelers and a horse." Vinicius stopped, he perhaps thought it be best he go by himself, but he was in no shape to defend himself against a band of military trained soldiers if he were caught, and Vinicius did not want to go home, not yet. He wanted to sort things out first. "Do you have any weapons with you, Bellistrad? A dagger? Maybe two?"

No Vinicius was not planning on springing into any type of combat, though he wanted to be best prepared as he could. After the night of ball, Vinicius felt always had to be prepared for anything.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell slid off the horse as he put his light out and took the reigns from Zotar, replacing them with a Fire Tribe sword. He knew Zotar would be glad the weapon in his hands was a familiar one. Fire Tribe swords were always warm when held by their nations benders and gave them comfort. Bell took the saddle off of his horse and folded it so it could be tied to the back of his pack. He put his pack on and adjusted it until it was comfortable.

Letting his horse loose back the way they had came Bell started down the path a ways."I suggest we don't use lights from here on out, if we wish to remain undetected. I know my way through this area, so if you need to use your heat sense and stick close to me. I will be scanning for heat ahead of us as we go." The trail was long and had many curves to it. It went around giant boulders, ancient trees, cross over rivers with almost natural looking bridges and even became overgrown in places. The journey took them until it was noticeably night time as they could see the full moon through some of the tree branches.

Bell stopped them under a particularly large tree with a large branch low to the ground that would act like a partial roof above their heads. They made no fire but they hardly needed it as the forest offered trapped heat that kept them warm throughout the night. Bell began meditating and gestured for Zotar to join him."Let us continue with breathing techniques. Similar to those used in fire bending, meditation breath is all about calming the mind and body while keeping a steady rhythm. Eventually your thoughts will drift off on their own. Count your breathes and concentrate on the same subject as our last session."

Bell meditated next to Zotar throughout the night. Whether Zotar meditated that long or not was up to him, as Bell knew he would have to work at his own pace. When daylight came Bell was still meditating, his mind at rest while he soul explored.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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When the king showed up Deborah didn't think much of the guards he had with him, to her it was pretty obvious that he needed someone to guide him around the castle, how else would he avoid walking right into a wall? So his intention wasn't getting through at all. When he started pacing around her she didn't bother with following his movements with her eyes, instead she focused on her hands that lied on the table. She was used to this behavior by now, it was not like his need to show how superior he was had emerged recently. No, she had seen it since the beginning. She was used to it, the only difference now from then was that she wasn't fighting it. Instead she just accepted it.

Half into the lecture Deborah's headache was back, this wasn't making anything clearer. She still had no idea what was going on. She just knew that she didn't like it, it was as if she saw how the noose appeared around her and got tighter and tighter. "Hold out your hand." The last reasonable part of her mind told her that it didn't matter, but the moment the words was let out into the open she moved the hands from the table. She held them close to her body, protecting them, the last thing she wanted was to lose what made her who she was. But she knew it was silly, she had seen how the king was able to transfer heat, he had touched the man’s chest, not his hands.

"I promise... I won't kill you. Make your decision now..." No Deborah doubted that the king would just kill her off, if that was what he wanted he would have already done it by now. He had so many chances to just kill her off - Shadowfen, when she was jailed, when he came to visit her and now. No, she knew he wouldn't kill her now. If that was his plan he had taken too much time to do other things, unnecessary things. "Or you know what, perhaps it be better I do this."

Deborah couldn't figure out what the king did or what he meant. But there was something, she couldn't place it at all. But a sudden warmth, no not warmth it was more like an intense heat. Something burnt her on the inside. It was like her being got in contact with a flame, it didn't burn her skin. It burned her soul. Whatever it was she was positive the king had something to do with it. And for the first time this meeting she felt extremely uncomfortable. She didn't need to fear for her outer shell, instead she needed to fear for the thing it protected. The thing people couldn't see with the eye, the thing she thought was indestructible and unreachable.

"Your fate is determined by how you answer this question, Deborah what is it you wish to become? If there be any position you want, say it now."

What she wished to become? The question was unexpected, earlier all he had talked about was what he wanted. Now she suddenly got to pick? At least tell him out loud what she wished to do. And it was strange, she was even more confused. Making faces again before shaking her head, he couldn't see it but she did it anyway. She just tried to grip the whole situation and the only way for her to express all those emotions inside of her was to grimace her way through it.

When she had finally sorted out her own feelings she looked up at the blind king with as much composure as possible, "I'm here to honor the agreement we made, the promise I gave you when you felt weak. I promised to be on your side and I'm here to be on your side if that is what you want from me. If that means I need to turn into a mercenary or an assassin it doesn't matter. I will follow your order. If you want me in here studying my own powers to see if I can find a way to give you back your sight that's fine. If your order is for me to leave Murtovaara and not come back that's fine as well. So the answer to your question is simple. I wish to keep my promise, any way you want me to king."

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Loyalty? Zaheed was not expecting that, not after what happened in Shadowfen. But what confused him even more was her saying that she would be fine if his decision were to forbid her to ever come back to work for him. But no matter, Zaheed believed her because she did have the choice and chance to leave, but she didn't. Thus, she proved to be trustworthy to lay a very important mission into her hands.

Zaheed ceased his pacing and instead back up, folding his arms. "Very well...," he responded, preparing himself for the news he was going to soon release. Yes, there were places in his mind doubted that he could trust her because that was just him as a person, always wary of others, never sure who they really are inside because he knows from himself, people are liars. The only being that yet knows about his sinister schemes to the throne was Icarus, his bird, but other than him, no one. "Deborah, do you recall me mention that I went through much blood to get to where I am as king?" His voice was much lower now, perhaps the lowest volume he could put it in and not be inaudible. "Well, I was not lying of course, but-- Hm, let me start from the beginning. Let us have a seat."

Zaheed staggered his way, finding a chair, he eventually needed help from Deborah. But this was it, the first time he spoke to a someone about his past, who he was as a person, and unleashed his dark secrets. "Lord Zarfu, my father, broke the tradition of the eldest son of the king takes the throne, and decreed Zotar become the tribe's next leader. I should of suspected it sooner, because you see ever since I was a child nothing I ever was could hold a candle to Zotar in my father's eyes. Nothing. And it was not like I did not put any effort, I was General of his armies, I was the reason for his success, well much more than Zotar. Because what was he to my father? A prince, that was it, a mere prince, he had no military rank, yet Zotar was the golden child enough so to steal the throne away from me. And I was determined to go through any extent to get it back. But what really pisses me off was that Zotar was one always angry, so much so he named himself Vinicius, vengeance. He had no right to be angry, he had the throne, I should of been the furious one. And I was, but I did not let him know that...

My mother was ill, so she was not in a state to rule, so Zotar took over. And in the meantime, I devised a plan to get rid of Zotar and to make sure my mother stayed sick. Thus I met with Zianro Azura, the leader of the water tribe, and discussed a plan to sneak his men into the castle on the night of Zotar's ball where he then was kidnapped. Of course situations like this happening within the fire tribe is not unusual, they have a past of assassinations of kings so that others may take their place.

But whatever Zianro did with Zotar I don't know, but I do know he is free and knowing Zotar he will try to come back here as if he is welcomed. And I cannot risk that, especially knowing it is his right to take back the throne. And thus that is the reason I needed you as an assassin, because I believe you are the only person I can trust with this type of information. And of course, because I need Zotar eliminated before he reaches this castle."




Lord Vinicius


The feeling of a sword in hand was one step to forging Vinicius back into the skillful warrior he was rather than a mad wrestling with self-torment and hate. He tightly wrapped his grip around the hilt as he stroked his finger down the flat side of the blade, "It has been long..." It indeed had, the last time he was equipped was the night of his father's death. So one could imagine the mix feelings Vinicius was flooded with, feelings and thoughts like, Those murders will pay. No, I shouldn't be impulsive, shouldn't make a stupid mistake that I can never get myself out of. But what if restraining myself is a stupid decision?

Vinicius finally just put the sword down by his side, those thoughts will have there place later. But Vinicius was grateful to have it at hand, but not only that, he started feel better about this Bellistrad. He armed Vinicius, he did not have to do that, he could of lied and said he had no weapons with him. Yet he didn't, and because of that Vinicius felt safer around him. Besides, Bell did seem like a smart guy for now though there were things about him Vinicius did not understand. Though bringing up the suggestion that they should not conjure any flames was a wise choice, one Vinicius agreed to in a swift nod.

He followed Bell to spot under a tree with a branch to act as a roof. "Let us continue with breathing techniques. Similar to those used in fire bending, meditation breath is all about calming the mind and body while keeping a steady rhythm. Eventually your thoughts will drift off on their own. Count your breathes and concentrate on the same subject as our last session." And then there goes that part about Bell that Vinicius did not understand, well Vinicius has heard about meditation, but never really met anybody who actually meditated. But because Vinicius so far trusted Bell for first freeing him and second giving him a weapon Vinicius did not ask questions but inside cooperated.

He sat crossed legged, closed his eyes, and tried remembering what they last talked about while meditating, whatever that was, which he presumed breathing slowly and calmly. He started to think about his father again, how much he always wanted to make that man proud, doing his best to do so. But that was the thing, doing his best, that got Vinicius thinking, Was I not doing just that, my best? What more could I do? What more could anyone do? He felt like he was pleading himself innocent in front a judge, that judge being himself. And that was when he responded back, Nothing... nothing. You did your best, Zotar.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Finally Deborah started to understand what was happening around her, pieces started to make sense. She didn't feel as lost, getting tossed around inside an ocean of new information that just kept on replacing each other. And as she listened she could understand why the king had chosen to give her, of all people in the world, such an important assignment. It was not because she was good at such things. It was because she didn't care even the slightest for the tribe or their previous king. Which only led her to the conclusion that the other assassins probably was fire tribe members since they wouldn't be fit for such a task.

Horrible enough she got kind of excited by the idea, to eliminate the previous king. That if something would turn her into someone, even if she died trying. She would die and be remembered for it. People would remember her powers, and even if she would fail in killing the man she could at least make him go blind. She would be satisfied with that.

But there was something she still was extremely uncertain about, "So, I'm supposed to kill your brother? I have no problem with that, I see it as a privilege in fact. But... how am I supposed to kill him? You know very well I haven't dealt with these sort of things before. I'm not even a soldier, well at least not an educated one. And I guess he can protect himself... Well, I think you understand what I'm implying. How am I supposed to kill him before he kills me."

She didn't fear death now either, which was why she had walked right into this. Sure, she found it a bit unsetteling. The thought of dying made her nervous, she remembered how it felt to be choked by the current king, and she didn't exactly like the feeling. But she didn't have anything to lose. Just a lot to win. So she wanted to succeed, even if most of her was in doubt. She just knew that she needed to kill him before she died herself. Because she was almost certain this would be the end of her.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed was pleased that she was completely fine with taking the job of an assassin. He felt it a wise choice to put her in the place of one because she had a unique power, one that could not identify her with a tribe. Because Zaheed knows proof from the murder of their father, Zotar will blame a whole tribe for the assassin.

"Well, I think you understand what I'm implying. How am I supposed to kill him before he kills me."

Yes, Zotar was a talented fighter, he was quick and fought like a rogue. Yet with Zaheed knowing that Zotar has been locked away from almost a month and most likely it was by the hands of Zianro, he is not nearly as skillful as he once was. And his honor was another thing, as Zaheed recalled on his younger brother's coronation, Zotar refused to duel a woman. He was always like that, being a polite gentleman. Though Zaheed cannot bet he will act the same way again, perhaps not to an assassin.

But if there were one thing the king was confident in, it was his training. Sure, he would only take a matter of three days training her due to time, though Zaheed has trained thousands of men and women before in both warrior and rogue classes. And Deborah also had that power of her, she could easily blind him and then swiftly slice his throat. However, Zaheed was going to give her freedom in how she wishes to execute her kill.

"That will depend upon the weapon you choose and also the tactic. Though I wish for you to be not in far distance, so no arrows nor throwing knives, because I want you be sure this man is my brother. Thus you are going to have to check his forearms; if they are covered with any sort of wrapping, you must rip it off before killing him. Which may not be hard for you if you simply blind him, rip any covering off, and discover if he is Zotar are not. Tomorrow I will get an update of the suspected location and a suspected man that may be my brother.

However you have another interesting option, you could go undercover. This will buy you time to get closer to him without him assuming anything and thus easier for you to make your kill. f you decide to do this you will require less combat training and inside more insight information about Zotar. A stab to his back gives you a higher chance of survival. But the choice is yours."




Lord Vinicius


"Zotar... do you believe me now? Your brother needs to be defeated one way or another."

Vinicius frozed letting his eyes absorb the horrid sight in front of him as his back was faced Bell. So Zaheed really did attack Shadowfen, well, attack would only be vague, he burned it, exploited it; Bellistrad was right. But Vinicius did not agree with him, no, not when hearing that Zaheed should be defeated for conquering Shadowfen. "Its Vinicius...," his words were like venom, menacing even threatening. His whole body had tightened start from the spine and spreading throughout with fist clenched and brow deeply furrowed.

He was trying his best not to allow his palms to erupt infernos, but the anger inside of him boiled profusely, so much so that his veins glowed like red hot iron, with light sweeping out of the crevices of his fist. One moment Vinicius felt he could actually trust this Bell, he began to like this guy. But now, Vinicius was one step from doing something he may highly regret, something rash, something deadly...

"These people deserve this," he growled. "Their people killed my father!" Yes it was true, rogue earth tribe assassins though hired by the water tribe, but Vinicius did not know that. And even I he did, with this much anger and vengeance, he did not care. "How dare you hope for my brother's defeat, when they were destined for this the second the first drop of my father's blood fell." Zotar lifted up the sword in his hand, marching closer to Bell in an offensive stance. "Who are you? Bell, is it? You really believe my brother should be my enemy here?"

Vinicius could already tell Bellistrad was in enough pain as it was, but he did not care. He was mad at Bell, for him to wish for his brother's downfall. Right now in Vinicius's eyes, Bell was hurting his family. And there was one trait that stuck out very dominantly about Vinicius, he was a family man. And when anyone held such unrighteous claim against them, he was willing to end them.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell listened to Zotar's words, and knew that he was far from ready to face his brother. He still held onto his naive family traditions and was never let into the know about his heritage. Bell did not care much that Zotar was now threatening him with his own sword, he was too much in emotional chaos to lift his energy to defend himself. "Kill me if you wish, 'Vinicius'. If my death will help you understand yourself than by all means, let me help you by not fighting back." Bell sat there unmoving, watching the events of the slaves and soldiers that had once been Shadowfen.

Bell almost missed the one person that would notice them hiding near the fringes of the forest edge. A Firetribe mage had sensed their heat and wasted no time making Bell and Zotar's position apparent. Bell let his body fall flat on the ground as a large missle of fire came at the two of them. The fire would blaze right over Bell's body, and whatever Zotar did about the attack he ignored. Bell had little will at that moment and it would take a few days of self repair to get himself back on track. He doubted he could even bend fire in his current state of mind.

He rolled back into the woods further and hid in the bushes, suppressing his heat as to not be sensed again. He stayed there as he calmed himself down from his chaotic emotions and afterwards crawled away from the fight about to ensue. It took him several minutes to find a small and secure hole for him to hide in as he took refuge from the fire bender and Zotar. He would eventually regroup with him but under controlled circumstances. For now he had to wait and watch.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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“Undercover?” Deborah hadn’t even considered that option, it hadn’t showed up in her mind. Not until the king mentioned it. And even though it was a good advice, that would indeed get her close to the suspect and make it easier to find out if it was the kings brother or not there were still some problems. These problems was Deborah herself. She wasn’t exactly someone nice, she didn’t talk that much with people. Aside from the king himself. Which probably was the person she have had the longest conversations with in her entire life. She simply wasn’t a people person, and she doubted that she would be able to get along better with the younger brother than she did with the older one.

“Are you sure I would be able to do something like that? I’m not questioning your plan but--,” Yes, she was. That was why she paused, trying to figure out how to ask it in the most polite way. “How am I supposed to go undercover? If your tales are true and the people your investigating right no indeed is your little brother… shouldn’t that mean he is extremely hard to get close to now? I mean like… suspecting everyone? And I have never really been that good at not getting angry at people… all the time. Wouldn’t I just get kicked out of the camp in the end? Before I’ve been able to confirm that it’s him?”

That was all of her concerns, she hadn’t been able to put it more nicely. So even if she would like for that plan to work, since it seemed to be the easier one – if it was anyone else but her that was going to work out just fine probably. But her? She doubted it. Was she just supposed to stroll right into the man’s camp and place herself there, not caring about any protests at all? And what was she supposed to answer if he asked her who she was? Deborah had no clue. That was why she asked. Because she wanted it to work out.

“I haven’t really done anything like this before… I just want to succeed…” She was just being honest, showing how much she wanted it to work. Because Deborah didn’t deal with lying or tricks, she was an honest person. She told the truth. All the time. Sometimes a bit exaggerative version, but all of it was true.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Zaheed did not feel that Deborah was questioning him, rather that she was questioning herself and her abilities. Pretending that he loved Zotar came natural to Zaheed, thus getting his brother on his side with his trust was easy. Yet again, Zotar is a family man. And Zaheed does not have any updates on his brother's temperament; people can change over time through circumstance, and Zotar just might be one of those people.

"And I have never really been that good at not getting angry at people… all the time. Wouldn’t I just get kicked out of the camp in the end? Before I’ve been able to confirm that it’s him?”

"Zotar has a much shorter temper than I do. So angering him is quite easy as it is..." If she had already admitted that she tends to bring people to fury, then perhaps it be best she not go undercover. Or, Zaheed could always state that if there are any issues that appear, she could always decide to attack him. Therefore she seems less of an assassin and more of a woman who got pissed off.

“I haven’t really done anything like this before… I just want to succeed…”

"No worries," Zaheed smiled, enjoying her strive for success. "We will devise a plan of course. But if you decide to go undercover you may wish to decide on a false identification, thus meaning story and such. Which the best idea you can keep in mind is bend the truth but stay the closest to it. Although I must say, there are some traits of Zotar that may prove to be a problem to you, knowing that you will feel the opposite of. One being, Zotar is extremely patriotic. He loves this nation as the fire tribe, an anyone apart of it he sees automatically as one of him.

If we could somehow create a backstory for you involving some positive affliction with the tribe, he will be open to trusting you." Zaheed was happy on sending Deborah on a undercover mission because if she gets caught, Zotar will not account a tribe for her. Yet if she claims some connection to the fire tribe Zotar may blame them, yet there is also a chance he may not if she only had connection, though not apart of the tribe.



Lord Vinicius


"Kill me if you wish, 'Vinicius'. If my death will help you understand yourself than by all means, let me help you by not fighting back." Vinicius was expecting more of a reaction, sure Bell had spoken to him, though that was it. Because Bellistrad did not even move nor look at a man threatening his life with a sword in his hand. But that did not stop Vinicius's urge to attack, sure he felt conflicted due to the fact that it felt unnatural and sadistic to him to fight a man willing to just stand there and accept his fate. But then Vinicius reminds himself this man wishes to hurt his family, his brother, that is.

Though as Vinicius began to charge Bellistrad, he noticed the man collapse to the ground, flattening his body. That confused Vinicius enough that he froze to give an facial expression of bewilderment. And as he did, he heard type of rushing roar behind him. Thus, he turned around, and while doing so the flames from the missile caught onto his long flowing hair spreading to both his face and to the clothing it was touching. Everything happened so fast for Vinicius, but most importantly, it was all unsuspected, or at least he did not keep anything like this happening in mind.

Next thing he knows the missile strikes the ground near him, causing him to fall back against the hard ground. Vinicius could not hear anything but a high pitch ringing in his ears from the attack of the missile. His vision was getting blurry as his head throbbed and shook with pain. But he was not going to allow himself to turn into unconsciousness, not in an area with potential attackers. Though when Vinicius tried getting up his back screamed with torment; he could smell the burning of his own flesh. Almost half of his head, where his hair once was scorched with one half of the left side of is face burnt also. Yes, he was a fire bender, yet burning his body like this was far from bearable.

No soldiers came to investigate any further. Before Vinicius came to Shadowfen, he looked like corpse already, now he was a burning corpse to them. But it pained Vinicius to know those were his people, and they hurt him. But it must of been a misunderstanding, or so he hoped. Also he tried to hang onto the faith that his brother would not wish for this type of destruction against him. However, no matter what, he had no choice but to lie there, though as stubborn as he was Vinicius pushed his body to get up until it gave up, and he went into something he so dearly wished not to- unconsciousness.

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#, as written by Lyysa


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"Oh..." So the smaller brother were the patriotic one. Deborah could see this end in disaster, or at least she could picture it not going that smoothly. Because if he was the patriotic that would only mean she would end up getting angry and perhaps even punching him. Because she knew that it was indeed their father that had banished her mother from the tribe in the first place because she had done something unforgiveable. Dirtied their reputation. Spat on their traditions and rules. There was a reason why there were so few women that gave birth to half breeds inside the Fire tribe.

From Deborah's point of view the only reason why the older brother at least accepted her was because he wasn't patriotic. He didn't care about the tribe either, which meant she wasn't something wrong in his presence. But she doubted that the younger brother would be that understanding. If she were to come up with a story that wasn't too far from reality - if she were to claim she was a half breed, wouldn't he just get disgusted? Or upset? When thinking about it, she wouldn't need to mention or show her abilities, so he wouldn't know. If she didn't screw up and accidently showed him the truth. But that would be the end of it if that was the case.

"Just a thought, but he wouldn't be so understanding when it comes to my abilities, right? If he's patriotic I mean. Like your father. Who threw out my mother from the tribe after she gave birth to me," Perhaps the sour tone in her voice in the last sentence was because she blamed their family for her childhood. But she blamed the patriotic ones even more since those agreed with stupid ideas like that.

"But anyway! What do you believe would be the best tactic when it comes to this?"

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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General King Zaheed


Could this work? It was a question Zaheed continuously asked himself. Deborah has never done any undercover work, or anything near. So sending her in with a false identification is a big risk. But the fact that Zotar was patriotic to the tribe was a high concern. Zotar basically stalked their father, well that was probably an exaggeration from Zaheed, but would there be a possibility that his brother may remember Deborah's mother, thus concluding who she is.

"You have a good point there. Perhaps the wisest action to take for this mission would to blind him, check his forearms for the brands, if there are any wrappings over them- rip those off, and if you see the markings, then you are confirmed to make the kill." It sounded simple enough, but through Zaheed's many years of military life and personal experience, he knows nothing is ever so simple as it seems. "Come now, we mustn't waste anymore time. Your training must start now."

Zaheed with help of his guards were guided to his private training grounds. The reason why Zaheed chose those training grounds, rather than the public ones open to soldiers, was because he did not want anyone to know Deborah was the one training. That would then raise a lot of questions because of her lack of any military rank or history. But instead, if they were both alone, everyone who just assume Zaheed was trying to woo her with his combat skills even though he is blind, because at this point perhaps everyone in the tribe knows nothing his going to stop this man.

Though they were not the only two in the room, instead Zaheed's little friend tagged along. Icarus was once a man and Zaheed's assassin before the curse that changed his life forever. But no matter, apart of that curse being that his master would be only one who could hear him cry, his master being the man who hired him, Zaheed. In other words, Zaheed would be the only one who could understand Icarus's chirping. Zaheed stood back with his bird riding on his abnormally large shoulder, as he trained Deborah to wield to daggers. It would be good for her to learn that weapon style well, studying the strengths and weaknesses of it. Because that was the way Zotar often fought.




Lord Vinicius


"Ah...," Vinicius woke up feeling like his head had just gone through a thrashing like a bucket stomping grapes. But his head was not the only problem, though a part of scalp was singed, his back also stung as it also had gotten into the way of the fire. But fire and pain was not the only things to encounter Vinicius, no, for Bellistrad had eventually caught of with the former fire lord. Vinicius did not know why, well, he had the idea, it may have been because of the trait inside of Bell that he noticed, forgiveness. This guy just won't give up, will he? Vinicius thought to himself, rolling his eyes as he could catch a glimpse of Bell's blue hair.

"This should teach you a valuable lesson about Karma, Vinicius. Your emotions dictate how the world reacts to you. If you are negative than your world will be negative to you, and vice versa."

"Huh, is that right?" Vinicius spoke in a scratchy rough voice, almost like his growl but not so intimidating, moreover grumpy. "Well the world can kiss my-- Ah! Easy! Easy..." Vinicius did not even try at this point to comprehend Bell's sayings, no, he was tired as cranky as an old man. Because if Vinicius was in normal mindset, he would not be so complaining as he was now. But after taking some pretty bad burns to different parts of his body and especially to what happened between him and Bell, Vinicius wanted to do the exact opposite to what Bell instructed him to do. Yes, in fact, to Vinicius, the world sucked.

"Makes you wonder why you've had so much bad luck after you changed your name doesn't it?"

"First of all," he grunted "I don't believe in luck. Everything happens for a reason. And second, if bad things happened to me after I decided to bear the name, Vinicius. Then explain my father's death? You know what,I don't... I don't want to talk about." That was right, Vinicius does not want what happened to him last time when dwelling on his regret happen again. Though, perhaps even if he did, he would not allow his anger to get the best of him. Because there is a difference between him now and him then when he was smashing his bloody swollen knuckles into rocks, he has forgiven himself. But still, Vinicius felt a seed of sorrow bloom into his heart every time he thought of spoke of it, usually sorrow mixed with anger.

"Okay, I saw Shadowfen. Now, I'm going to find some sharp pointy objects and show them off to Zianro and that stupid head of his." Yes, yes, Vinicius was still holding a grudge against Zianro, but how couldn't he, a man who is known to hold grudges, even so much so his title implies that.

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Character Portrait: Lord Vinicius Character Portrait: Bellistrad Indorial Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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Bellistrad Indorial

Bell listened to Zotar as he spoke and felt he was ready to move on to the next stage of training. It would have to be faster in this process if anything was going to get done. But this revenge on Zianro would have to be quelled, nothing good would come of it. "Zianro was acting as a leader should. He made a deal to protect his people from an enemy in a partial truce. All the truce required was your containment. Personally I am sure you would have done the same thing in his situation, and more than likely attacked the opposing tribe while they were confused." Bell inspected the burns now that the salve had a chance to soak into his flesh.

The burns looked to be swelling as they should be. Bell reached into his pack and took out some light gauze, wrapping the first couple inches around his wrist for easier access and proped Zotar's head up on his knee before getting to work lightly wrapping the burn sites. He did not see any fire soldiers approaching them so he guessed they fooled themselves into thinking it was nothing but a forest animal they had shot at.

After he had finished wrapping up Zotar Bell helped him stand up slowly so they could move. "I don't see a good way to deal with Shadowfen right now, so I suggest we go to a safer place until you are healed. I have just the place in mind and it is actually not far from here." Bellistrad started walking to the south and grabbed up his sword and pack. He handed the sword back to Zotar so he could use it as a walking cane. He did not care if Zotar tried to strike him down with his back turned, if it happened than Bell had failed as a teacher.

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It would take them only four hours to arrive at Bell's location, by that time it was midnight. The gentle sounds of falling water filled the forest air as they came down a shallow hill and around a bend to a tall waterfall. "Where we are. What do you think?" Bell laughed and stepped on a thin ledge that went under the waterfall into a cave. Not the most original hiding place but it would keep firebenders out just from the fear of getting wet. Inside was a large room filled with all sorts of supplies, a couple of beds, and a single ray of light from the outside through a small crack in the ceiling illuminating a flower rested there by Bellistrad.

Bell went to one of the mat beds and sat on it cross legged and began to meditate."I believe you are ready to begin the next chakra. Begin by focusing on the energy in your naval, same as before. This time I want you to think about your relationships with other people. Family, friends, platonic, romantic or sexual. Focus on the source of your emotions for them, what beliefs do you have that limit your emotions or cloud them and see what you really feel about them and yourself." Bellistrad could not help Zotar with energy this time, he had to heal his own energy which he began doing immediately.

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Character Portrait: General Zaheed Thanos Character Portrait: Deborah Sigrún
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