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The God Descends (Social/Private)

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on Sun Feb 10, 2019 6:04 pm

Finn Mertens

If there was but a single word to describe Orchidia at that very moment, it was "Pure." Snow, white and untainted but by footsteps quickly covered, fell in thick white snowflakes on slant rooftops. They piled on top of one another, the change happening without notice until it was already accumulated. What little light forced its way through the clouds reflected, making the entire city glow. How such a dirty place filled with so many wrongs and so much deceit could ever look so clean was irony at its best. It was no worse than any other within Fiore, arguably better due to the guild that resided there, but it had its share of secrets. Those little truths that begged to be discovered were somewhere within, buried within the snow.

Today was no the day that they would be discovered. At least, not intentionally. For the man whose presence was announced by the muffled crunch beneath his feet, there was only his destination in mind. His body was hugged tightly by warm cloth, stacked in layers on his body to fight the cold. His feet were covered by a pair of odd looking boots, ones that seemed to bend to his foot and allow full maneuverability despite their bulk and fur. Thick, baggy pants that looked of similar material to sweatpants were tucked into the boot, hugging his waist. His hands were stuffed into pockets of a thick jacket made of similar material, and around his neck hugged a scarf that looked as though it had seen horrendous conditions in the past few years.

His face was bare, rugged and sporting an even layer of scruff over his face and neck that did not look at place on the young mans chiseled and handsome features. Across his chest was as a strap, holding tight to his back a hilt that looked of far higher quality than his clothes, and the hilt of a blade that looked otherworldly.

The air about him was different. There was nothing physically to indicate he was anything other than a wanderer, making his way into a town that had buckled down for the snow. The wind blew over him, the snow clung to any surface that would accept it, and his nose tinted red to the elements. Yet there was a presence about him that demanded attention.

It was in his eyes that scanned the environment, passing over and memorizing every thing before him. It was in his slow and delicate twists of his head, craning his ears towards every little sound that did not come from him. It was in his even breaths that came without a shiver, as if he had found a way to simply ignore the cold.

It were as though a lion had found itself into the den of sheep, a predator that none would even identify.

Near the center of town, his face let on the first bit of emotion since his arrival. A sense of recognition, formed by raising eyebrows and a parting "Ahh," that found its way to no one. He continued his pace, neither slowing to analyze the structure nor speeding up to hasten his journey. Before long he traveled over one of the bridges of the moat which surrounded the guild, and the doors of the hall swung open to his touch. It was funny; Despite their size and weightiness, they moved as though they dared not resist his touch.

Beyond that door was not a hint of proof that the outside existed at all. Artificial lights shone a yellow hue reminiscent of the sun, and the sounds of laughter and joviality filled the halls from end to end. Song and dance were aplenty, and everyone seemed to know one another. There was hardly a glance at the door, and why would there be? This was Lamia Scale. It was one of the biggest guilds in all Fiore, with the most renown for its members being proficient in combat. Would there dare be an attacker? Would there even be a criminal who sought to wreak their terror upon these halls? There were a few idle glances cast in the direction of the door, but the sheer difference in lighting and temperature caused people to both look and shy away from the portal outdoors.

The door closed, and nothing had changed.

It was a slow change. A shift in the atmosphere, one that no one noticed. The lighting still filled every corner, and heat still radiated from the floorboards. Dance and song reigned supreme, but there was a challenger to their throne.

Silence began to eek its way through the guild like a poison, introduced unnoticed and spreading in its benign way. People found their eyes drawing to the strange individual whom had entered. Few recognized him, and none knew his name, but still they found themselves looking at him.

There was a presence among them that did not belong. One who could pose a threat to their wonderment, to their fun. The peace that felt so natural was fading, and yet nothing had happened. It was a calm before the storm.

Would it even hit the shores?

If one would ask when it got so quiet within the guild that a pin could be heard hitting the floor, no answer could be given. It happened so gradually, then so abruptly, that none had noticed. Yet now all were aware of its deafening pressure, and the sense of wariness that radiated from this traveler like a warning.

"Something warm to eat, and some water please." Jewel was slid across the counter to the bartender who had long since cleaned the glass within his hand. Then on cue, like a dam giving way, things were back to normal. Dance and song, laughter and shouting. The hall went back to a celebration of life and companionship, and the stranger was left back to his vices. Whoever he was, he seemed to mean no harm nor ill will.

In fact, he did not. He was a member of a guild much like this, but his path had not allowed for him to have such a care free mentality. The past years had changed him, carving into him as though he were marble and forcing him to take shape in a way that he could have never seen himself before. He had grown and matured, and perhaps in other ways decayed. Yet he was here, alive and well, and he was waiting for someone whom he had not seen in a very long time.

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on Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:35 am


WORDS: 810 | TAG: @finn | WINTER

Save for the warm, comfy looking white parka, one wouldn't think Alisa had come dressed for such a biting, wintery chill... And yet for the northern sculptress, this amount of protection got the job done easily enough, atop a stylish black blouse and tight jeans, not really caring much for that small patch of bare alabaster skin around her midriff even under the odd, frigid draft brushing against it. How could she not cherish such a beautiful winter afternoon, when it meant she had most of the streets all to herself, as far fewer people dared venture outside than they might in three days' time.

She couldn't help but let her gaze linger on the smokey puffs condensing before her eyes with every breath at times, or simply bring her palm face up and catch the odd Snowflake. The city looked gorgeously pale on these days of winter, making it especially refreshing to simply wander around outside and admire what sights she could. Not to mention, enduring the chill as such helped toughen her up after all, and leave it to a Alisa to never put her training aside... Though she'd never go as far as to name that her motivation for leaving the hotel... No, above all she hoped to clear her head, and wondering if she might not spot anything interesting... And when she neared the Lamia Guild hall, her eyes widened as she was sure she'd seen a ghost. A blonde, sword swinging, adventuring ghost.

"Wait... Isn't that...?", Finn had been the second of her closest guildmates whom she'd lost track of... Was it really him? The last time she'd seen them, Lance had just passed away. He must have embarked on his own quest for vengeance, and reached the same frustrating conclusion as Alisa herself had... Even torturing a member of Grimoire didn't really yield the identity of Lance's killer, so whether anybody might have found him in the end was up for the heavens to decide.

All of that mattered comparatively little in that moment as the hopefully familiar wanderer made his way inside the guild Hall, and Alisa naturally followed suit, wondering who she might find in there...

One could argue just what business did a member of Blue Pegasus had in the Lamia Scale guild hall. Even after all this time looking to Arisa as a sister, she'd never once deigned to even pay her a visit at her own place... That... Wasn't really something she felt pride in, quite the opposite. Perhaps she should use this chance to look around for Arisa, or at least stop by another time if it turned out she missed her today. Alas, she currently had a whole other set of priorities, having come inside in pursuit not of any particular Lamia, but a ghost, heels clacking audibly over the stone floor, echoing through the hallway until the guild slowly but surely came back to life with bustling activity, that kind of rowdy envoiroment one so easily associated with guilds... The very reason why Alisa had only ever considered joining Blue Pegasus and evnetually did so, and wouldn't have it any other way:

"...So I hear Lamia Scale has quite the delectable beer on sale... Pour me a mug, if you will~", ordered the sculptress, placing a couple of coins as she slipped into the seat next to the blonde, scruffy looking warrior. He'd changed a lot, though the closer she reached the more she felt certain, the best friend and guildmate she'd missed for years was here, sitting next to her. Even when the audience shuddered at his presence, Alisa found it oddly warm and familiar. It really was him, wasn't it...? Even though the two had always been inseparable, she didn't really see Jake anywhere no matter how hard she looked around, hadn't seen him even before she went inside. In the end, no lingering uncertainty could every stop her speaking up, that throaty, melodious voice, "Finn..."

She paused, a minute stretch of time that went on for an eternity, with the sculptress all but balled her fists, wishing, hoping she wasn't dreaming about bygone days. That one more of those few she looked up to as her closest friends might have actually, really come back, hopefully for good. Thus she waited for an acknowledgement, any sign that she hadn't made an embarassing mistake as her smile widened, beaming down upon her lost guildmate, now found again:

"I missed you...", she continued at long last, pulling him into a tight embrace, gripping tightly to his back as she sighed. Even as she peeled away, an affectionate look yet lingered on the cool beauty's face. She had so many questions, and yet, more than anything she felt a need to whatever she must to ensure he wouldn't feel the need to up and vanish as such.

Strength is also Beauty

"New year, new day~"
- Alisa Vollan

credit to nat of adoxography.

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on Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:11 am

Finn Mertens
The noise of the guild hall seemed to form a white noise to the young adventurer. Where most people would be energized by the upbeat nature of the establishment, he seemed to simply faze it all out. His expression had still not changed, and while a water was placed before him, he found himself only hoping that the hot meal would be soon to follow. The guild halls were not usually one to pander to random passerby's, but today was an exception. A good guild would always help someone in need, especially when the weather outside was willing to swallow up any who stayed exposed too long.

The chair beside him became occupied, but it went without catching his interest. He made note of it, but otherwise paid it no mind. It was perhaps a telling change to whom his guild knew him to be. The outgoing, happy individual who would willingly spark conversation chose to instead ignore whoever took the seat beside him. It could raise the question of whether or not something had happened, or perhaps it would go unnoticed.

Even her words had not alerted him to who she was. People often spoke of those they held dear, of how the memories could withstand even the test of time. That was, of course, a complete and utter lie. It had been two years with some extra months in between since he had heard from anyone he knew within Fiore. Who could expect him to remember their voices, or the inflection of their words? Time, and the moments that filled it, did well to wash away such nuances.

It wasn't until his name was spoken, soft enough to almost be washed away by their surroundings, that he began to focus in on who may be beside him. His body tensed, visibly so, and his eyes widened. His mouth pulled tight like a drawstring, and his hand had found itself on the hilt of his sword before anyone would have taken notice; Proof of his mastery. His eyes found themselves to the woman who had said such a curse, and he had every intention to cut down her and anyone else with her if need be.

Then, just as quickly, there was recognition. Faint for a moment, without the precision that would have helped fully relax him. She spoke again, but the ringing in his ears practically blocked it out. He heard her, but there was a delay in his processing.


He was pulled inwards to an embrace, her arms around him and clutching onto her back as if afraid to let go. Slowly he let his body relax to her touch. His arm fell away from his weapon, draping over her shoulder, and his other arm came up from the table to wrap around her surprisingly slender body. "Alisa," he whispered, telling himself that it was her and that he could relax.

She finally pulled away, and with a tired smile he locked eyes with her. She hadn't changed a bit, still powerful and beautiful as ever. She had always self ascribed the role of checking in on her guildmates. She must have felt truly surprised to see him, and now that she could get a good look of him, her surprise would likely have mounted further. His eyes looked tired, rings telling that he had little sleep. His body moved slowly, a tightness that seemed more uncomfortable than anything else. He seemed like he felt out of place, and that was a very strange way for him to carry himself.

Rather than give her the time to investigate, he moved the conversation forward. "What are you doing in Orchidia?"

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on Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:10 pm


WORDS: 760 | TAG: @finn | WINTER

He was jumpy, sure, far more so than she'd ever seen him... Unluckily for Alisa, after the challenge of earning her trust, very few managed to lose it outright, more so someone she felt as close to as Finn. Thus, even as he reached for his blade, she didn't flinch, trusting the real Finn not to so casually swing a sword at her for no reason, and her own ability to avoid the worst of anybody else's blade. When he relented that seething killing intent, her smile windened, knowing a friend had recognized her at long last.

Welcome home...

Words unsaid, and yet the sculptress' embrace spoke volumes... How she missed him, and the joy she felt at seeing him at last; holding her long lost friend close, basking in his soothing warmth, lest she lose him the moment she peeled away. In the end she sighed and gave him room to breathe, seating upright in her bench once again, smoothing out her clothes and looking over what those years away had done to him. The urge to know and understand was stronger than her, but even a perpetually pondering woman like Alisa could only wonder what he might have gone through. She herself had been to the Abyss, but... Finn more so than her, looked as if he'd been through hell and back. Granted, Alisa hadn't actually been there for long, and even then, she doubted it would have affected him that much either... No, the kind of hell he went through had to have been something else entirely, and from Jake's absense alone, she could deduce a fair bit.

He'd always felt the need to do everything alone. She did too, though they always had different ways to go about it... How much of that was Finn alone or Finn and Jake was beyond her... Whatever weighed him down... He'd likely not let anybody ease that burden anytime soon, not out of the blue. If Alisa ever had any doubts, his swiftness in changing the subject said as much, and she respected him enough not to pry into it:

"Nothing quite so glamorous as you might think~... I was just passing by, but when the Demons attacked, I wound up sticking around.", she replied, returning a sympathetic smile, rubbing behind her neck as she met his gaze, no doubt still wondering what had happened to him. Though more than fretting over the past, she looked to the future, and how they might begin to make up for lost time, "...See if I could figure out how and why before they strike next."

Indeed, she hadn't changed much, to his eyes she'd look very much like the same person with naught but three extra years on her... On her time away though, Alisa came to understand herself a bit better, her introspective outlook finally catching up to the woman she'd become, shedding some of her own self images from her younger days. That moment when she traded away her beloved crystal magic for the Devil Slaying power needed to go inside the Abyss, all for the sake of her beloved pupil. Five years ago, the thought would have never crossed her mind, she wouldn't so much as indulge the thought of even having a pupil.

"If you came here for the demons, they're thankfully gone. I'd like to think for good, but we both know they'll be back...", she continued, grabbing the mug of beer handed to her and taking a good, long chug, sighing softly as she placed it back on the counter, wiping a stray bead of amber off the corner of her mouth, "Eventually..."

Though she had enough self awareness to notice how years ago, he'd have always been the one approaching the aloof, distant Alisa. Perhaps he noticed anything different, but odds were he didn't... As the years passed and Finn grew distant, Alisa, for all her seclusion, had come out of these two years apart ready to protect the home her thoughts had wandered to every day.

Not the guild's mansion, as luxurious as it may be, but the others beside her who made it their home.

To care for them, to be their rock... To be a wall of diamond between and whatever threatened them. In a cruel twist of fate, it took her losing her adamantine abilities for this truth to finally dawn on her. As she looked down into the frothy amber beverage in her hands, she couldn't help but muse on whatever weighed down on Finn, to rob him of restful sleep as such. Looking at him with a soft, caring smile, she tucked a loose raven lock behind her

Strength is also Beauty

"New year, new day~"
- Alisa Vollan

credit to nat of adoxography.

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on Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:34 am

Finn Mertens
Alisa had hugged him rather suddenly, pulling his head into the crook of her neck, right near her collar bone. The act had caught him off guard, the stiffness of his muscles as she pulled him forth indicating that he was neither prepared nor expected such a thing. He seemed ready to strike, as if he had to be prepared for such tests for his life. This reaction was temporary, though. Her grasp on him seemed to warm his frozen body, allowing his face to soften and muscles to relax. He leaned into her embrace, his eyes closing, as he accepted the embrace from his old friend.


It certainly didn't feel that way, and yet here was a taste of what he remembered. Those he was close with, those who truly cared about him in one way or another. Words flashed through his mind, gruff in sound and tired in their tone.

"Your adventure isn't over, Finn. Go home.... Please."

His vision blurred for a moment, eyes closing tightly to force away such things as she released her grip on him. He sat up, clearing his throat in a way that would likely come across as more embarrassment from the hug than hiding his emotions. She spoke, and her response caught him off guard immediately. His eyes widened, lips pursing and spine straightening ever so slightly. Demons had attacked?

His expression, due to leaning over the counter slightly and looking ahead, would likely be hidden from her. Still, if she was paying close attention, his body language would give away the fact that he knew not what she was speaking of.

She continued talking about them, regardless of if she had realized anything or not, and he listened in silence. As she spoke, indicating that she believed they'd be back, Finn interrupted, unaware if she'd planned to continue.

"Alisa, I don't know what you're talking about." His words were quiet, but seemed to carry much more weight than what was purveyed. He had his run ins with demons long ago. Humans who had accepted the tainted magic of Demons who had long since become evil. He had experienced an entire nation, wiped out by that parasitic evil. He had nearly lost his own life, and at the time he had nearly lost his brother as well. This had been years ago, immediately after Lance had died.

He had been certain that he'd eliminated every last being that had been involved in that incident. He had been positive that Fiore was far too powerful a country for demons of that caliber to cause any sort of damage or chaos.

So then how? How was Orchidia apparently attacked?

His eyes turned to Alisa, and in them was a fire that seemed more fueled by rage than by passion. color=#3366ff]"Alisa, you did well coming here to stop them. Demons are more malignant than anyone could imagine."[/color] His mind was playing scenes of the innocent, dying in front of him. Their fates were out of his hand. For him, especially at the time in which he strove to be a true hero, it was a sick and unusual hell.

A deep sigh escaped his lips, one that carried much of his emotion. His hand came up, running through his hair, and his eyes closed. He tried to relax, to let the tension ease from his body. After a few moments, his voice would come across to her quietly, but loud enough for her to hear.

"I'm sorry, Alisa. The past couple of year have been... Well, they've been hell." He opened his eyes and looked at her. For a moment, he wondered if he looked different in her eyes. His features still resembled themselves, of course, but he had aged through some of the most important years for a man. His arms had become stronger, shoulders broader, face more defined and prickly with hair. Did he even look like Finn anymore?

"It's good to see you... I missed you."

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