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Dark Summons
(2014-01-24 - 2014-01-25)
There may be a grue.
Seith Castle Oblivion has this element to it that seems to attract those who wander. Those who find themselves lost in life. It is that kind of attraction that reeks of that dreaded thing called fate; for it can show one images that can make or break a one's spirits.

But what drew some of those who are here today to this very place... is not fate. No, it is the call of a man who has an ulterior motive. A desire to lure more people into the contract of the Shadow Lords, so that they might hold a stronger position against the forces of light.

And what better target to choose than a dame who has lived so long in darkness?

A woman who is falsly accused of murdering her father.

A woman who has seen far more than most in the forests of the night.

And for that, he also needs props. People to make it all feel real...

Welcome to the halls of the Castle Oblivion. You stand in front of a white door.

N) It is dark. There may be a grue.
W) Go through door.
S) Leave
E) It is dark. There may be a grue.
Artemis Eurus Lately, it has been difficult to discern just what is real and what is not. The curse that swept over the Old Kingdom with her in it feels like a nightmare--nightmarish because it reminds her of a time she will never get back. It was false, a fabrication, pulled on her past, harkening back through the threads of fate to call something forth that was long buried.

Love and hate...sometimes, they are not so very different from each other. The kind of hate she had for the man Louis LeBlue was the kind of hate that could only have once been love. It was twisted and barbed, and wrapped her heart, constricting...

The woman who now calls herself Artemis Eurus wandered toward Castle Oblivion with a knowledge of the place in her mind. She'd seen terrible things here. She's seen another's heart play out as if on stage. Still, she came. She was drawn to this darkness, because in the darkness, maybe there were answers.

Or maybe, just sleep.

A strong hand, long calloused by extensive practice with a sword and hard living, reaches to open the white door.
Warden Thache Warden is honestly feeling quite happy about how his little invitation to a treasure hunt went. He got kicked in the face, the tavern got wrecked, however he had more than a touch of fun.

Avira looked /so/ angry.

So did everyone else. It was /delightful/ really. So a bit of fun. A bit of brawl. A bit of a swim.

He was a pirate, he wasn't afraid of a bit of water.

It was in entirely good spirits that he strolled down the road towards the twisted form of the castle. He wasn't really worried about darkness. He was more worried about something Seith promised him here. Something shiny and rich. The devil of the thing is that the damn sorcerer wasn't /that/ specific.

Ah well.

Hard to find good help and all.

"You sure this is the way that pointy eared poppinjay pointed us, Spooks?" The unworried and unhurried cat-eared pirate murmurs to his equally lazy looking racoon on his shoulder.

"Pretty sure boss. Though he didn't mention company, or any door..."
Aeschere Childs A girl who never escaped her mother's shadow.

A girl with all her father's arrogance, and none of his sense.

A girl diving headlong into darkness, and probably knows it.

A girl who really hasn't got the hang of this dark paths stuff, and probably shouldn't have been trying to navigate back from the Carribean to Bevelle on her own power, but, eh. Getting lost is just a mean way of saying 'finding a new place', and this one is certainly more interesting than an office on an airship.

With nobody to impress, she does carry her old spear with her, currently laid across her shoulders lazily; it looks ridiculous, because it's longer than she is, but there's no helping that.

But wait; someone's beaten her to it. Someone pretty hard, it looks like. She'll, ah, she'll wait here and see what's behind the doors. Y--

Her toe catches a pebble on the walk, and it clatters loudly in the the still air. Oh well. Stealth isn't really her style, anyways. Who heard her?

Maybe that knight at the gates, and maybe, uh, hey that's that pirate from the pub. Blood and ash. She turns and waves.

"I didn't expect so soon again to see you, Captain."
Seith A forest surrounds the threesome, at equally interspersed distances. The skies are dark, and the moon is the only light in this realm. An owl hoots overhead, and then darts off. They can't see eachother. And that just makes things a little bit more creepy here.

There is rustling of bushes. And a wind that plays with the leaves of the trees. Artemis might notice that something isn't 'quite' right about the scenery. The forest doesn't feel as alive as it normally would. But she would also recognize this as _her_ forest.

Somewhere, there is the sound of a boar.

And even further away, the heavy gallop of a group of horses running along a thin path through the forest. A horn blows. This is a hunt! But it's not a hunt for normal prey.

Somehow, all who are present know that the thing that is pray...

Is them.

Aeschere. Artemis. Warden.

_They are Prey_
Montag Montag has not been seen for some time, Montag has been busy with varous problems in Goug. Thankfully he's manage to get some time off and he was just going to go hunting. Why not it's extra food and sport at the same time. Think what you will of the man he's not going to be a wasteful hunter however this has got the ShinSec LT a bit on edge? There's something else going on here which has caught his attention, as the Shinra trooper now adjusts his helmet and checks the imaging system for a moment.

"Something isn't right here..."

He's lagging behind the others as he moves in, curious to just what is going on here against his better judgement to get the hell out of here.
Artemis Eurus Artemis steps into the forest, taking the air deep into her lungs. The pine, the mossy smell, the soft moist leaves beneath her feet. The trees, she knows them, all the game trails...these are her woods. She grew up here.

It makes about as much sense as anything else.

The blaring croon of a hunting horn catches her attention, the angry snorting of a boar being chased. The hairs at the back of her neck rise, adrenaline beginning to pump through her at the prospect of a hunt. The maksed woman turns then, aware of others behind her. She smiles a carnivore's smile. "The hunt is on--run," she suggests, then begins bounding forward through the trees, every step echoing her familiarity with the place.

If you want to live, you may wish to follow her.
Warden Thache The pirate turns his head slightly as he hears a voice that is passibily familiar. His smile brightens, his ears perking up. "Lady Lancer! I didn't expect your company so soon again either! You put on quite a show back at the tavern, sorry I didn't get to tell you thank you for that before I had to take my leave. I hope the pouch at least made up for that somewhat."

He turns his eyes towards the lady kight then. "Might you know our other friend here?" He asks curiously, not reconising the woman in the least.

His attention cants around again at Montag begins to creep up. "And now its a party is it?" He smirks slightly, that one glimmering white fang bright in the darkness...

And then it gets worse.

The door opens and magic draws him and others in. He recovers, glancing around the forest with a flash of annoyance across his face. "...I don't think this is the right path." A pause. "And I hate magic. Just for the record."

Then he's running, right after Artemis. Easily enough keeping pace with her. "And /why/ are we running?" He asks as legs stretch. "Just ambush the hunters from the trees and be done with it?" Its simply a suggestion, though he isn't about to do that unless he has at least one or two of them to back him up.
Aeschere Childs Dread comes so rarely to Chera, fool that she is, so she should savor it when she can. Not the tense uncertainty of whose blow will strike true, but a harsh, gnawing chill. Death, drawing near. Loss. The feeling of the Heartless night, of waking up on a desert plain with the /certainty/ of her doom. The feeling of opening the door of a castle and stepping into the depths of a forest.

Tied for her as it is to loneliness, the girl searches frantically for someone, anyone, and finds the knight, the captain, and... a ShinRa grunt. Of the four, only one appeals to her this moment, and she fairly rushes to his side. Hello again, Captain Thache.

She may be small, but she's fast, and she keeps pace with the pirate easily. "I like that plan," she agrees between breaths, but she sounds like she really doesn't.
Seith The deep thrum of the horses' steps are on approach. Running only takes one so far against the might and speed of people on horseback. Although while they are not running on the path, the horses are having more trouble weaving in and out between the trees.

Or that's how it _should_ be.

What approaches are men in dark armor, their entire faces entirely covered and hidden from sight. Massive antlers stick out from their helmets, and nothing but cold red glowing eyes stare out from their visors. Truly, nothing about their garb is anything but black.

Even their steeds are like the darkest of the night. Even with the moon's light, they are hard to make out sometimes. Like mere figments. The way to tell where they are is the deep breath of those horses. And at their center rides one man in particular. Beefier than the others, carrying a large sword in one hand, and a massive halbert in the other.

The one at his side blows the horn once again! A massive looking thing. Made out of some kind of demonic looking horn. Somehow...

This doesn't come across as an enemy one would want to face.
Artemis Eurus Artemis runs, fleet as a deer across the uneven ground. She grins as she looks sidelong to Warden, as quick as she and clever too. "Hunt the hunter. Brave, you are," she replies with a dark laugh. "Do you know who hunts?" she says, dashing between the trees as if she knows every step of this dance by heart.

Why not? This is her dream. It must be.

Artemis catches a glimpse of their pursuers, eyes widening.

She looks back toward the others who keep pace with her. "The Wild Hunt...join or die," she says, then begins to circle around, flashing from one place to another in the blink of an eye, the sound of muted thunder in her wake. She's trying to circle around the hunting party, flank perhaps.

Crazy bitch that she is.
Warden Thache Warden takes one glance over his shoulder towards the approaching hunters.

"I retract my question." He adds lamely before he takes one heavy stomp against the /theory/ it should carry him into the air. However he isn't quite sure how it all works here.

Effin' magic.

His flight-boots working or no he'll follow along with Artemis as she starts to circle around. She at least knows what he's doing.

"And I've been called worse than brave." He adds with a smirk once more on his lips. The man must be a danger junkie, he's enjoying this sort of thing. Perhaps he's just insane.

"For now Lady Lancer, I think we should stick with this one." He jerks his head towards Artemis. "At least she might know a way out." A wider smile. "If not, well. We'll make it up as we go along! Stick with me eh Lady'o?"

He sounds confident. Unworried.

He's a Captain, he has too. Right? Its part of the job description.

"And now, for a test." He spins once, a quick half step as he stomps down again sending a wave of stuttering anti-gravity out behind him. Intending to trip up the horses.

For science and all.
Montag Montag would find himself going into the door much like the others before him. he'd find himself in the strange forest and he mutters for a moment.

"Magic, uggg what a pain in the <Goosehonk>."

He dusts himself off and checks his gear for a moment as he looks the others over.

"It is better than doing nothing, Miss. We need to press on and figure out how to deal with...this?"

he looks at the huge being before them.

"So we're being hunted eh?"
Seith Artemis' idea seems to be working. The horses' steps do not seem to change in a way that would indicate that they have noticed that she has changed her approach. But by the time that Warden greets the horses, one of the horsemen has disappeared. This leaves Warden to shoot through an empty spot. It's almost like passing through a ghost. There should have been something. But there simply isn't. If he alters his course, he might very well succeed in toppling one of the other horses however!
Aeschere Childs Oh, wonderful. She's wandered into /folklore/. Not, of course, that she knows the Wild Hunt by name, but if you see them you're sure to know their nature. It's real. It's happening. It's happening /again/. Who stand before her are darkness. Are demons. Are a means to her end.

But what does that matter? She has an order. She knows what to do with an order. "Not in the air I can't," she notes, calmly now. She's quick, sure, but she's not going to beat a horse in a foot race. Stones fly as she changes trajectory. She plants the head of her lance, and vaults toward the canopy. There were few bows among those demons for a hunting party, she hopes she noted correctly. Let them stretch their arms a bit after her.

She find a perch in a crash of foliage, and more leaves and sounds scatter as she runs off down a branch.
Artemis Eurus Artemis grins toward Warden. It is fairly plain she is enjoying this to some degree as well.

Artemis stops her made teleporting when she reaches the side of the hunting parting, running silently, drawing her katana in a flash of moonlight on steel as she drops low and swings for the legs of the nearest horse.
Warden Thache "Ah yes, forgot about that. Be right there," Warden calls without worry as Chere points out that she can't bloody well fly. He doesn't quite change course, but instead he sweeps his arm up. Glowing golden energy ropes spool out from the fabricators on his wrist as he slings the length of rope towards the legs of the nearest horse, intending to entrap and trip the entire thing up.

He touches down on the ground and smiles a moment before springing up again and using that agility and those tricks of his to leap back into the air, spinning once to alight lightly in the branches next to Aeschere.

"I always liked having the height advantage. What about you?"

A glance down then as the knight seems to be laying into the Wild Hunt with abandon. "She is very...enthuastic." he observes as he draws a pistol from his bandolier and takes aim on a rider.

The Captain is more inclined to stay up here. Where is safe. He hopes the Shinra gunner has the same idea.
Seith Indeed, Aeschere would be correct. Shortbows let loose their feathered arrows, flying in a volley after the very arc her vaulting makes through the skies. The speed at which they loosen their arrows is rapid. Amazingly rapid. Clearly, superhuman.

Before Artemis, a man suddenly halts her approach. The very same that disappeared earlier. A massive halberd finds the wake of her Katana and furiously blocks its path to the horse's leg, and then with superhuman power, tries to force her back and literally swing her into a nearby tree! The demonic helmetted man's antlers are larger somehow. Clearly, this must somehow be the leader.

Warden is having a little bit more luck. His rope tactics grapple onto the horse's leg and send it sprawling to the ground, causing it to explode into a puff of dark rolling misty smoke. The demonic armored creature that was riding it gracefully lands to the ground and immediately jumps after warden in an attempt to stick a sword through his pistol.
Artemis Eurus Artemis' heart twists as her blade is blocked with a halberd, gritting her teeth hard she slides the blade upward along the polearm as she leaps, agile as a cat, striking at the leader of The Hunt with a menacing growl issuing from low in her throat. "Why," she growls.

Artemis disappears in another rapid teleport, appearing a few feet above the horse and rider, falling down upon him with blade raised. "WHY! WHY DID YOU KILL HIM! YOU RUINED /EVERYTHING!/" she screams.
Warden Thache Wonderful.

"Again." Warden growls as he notes the man coming though him. "I hate magic." His pistol fizzles and smokes as the sword impacts it. Warden simply lets the ruined weapon fall as he whips his hand towards the horned figure.

That golden rope appears again, aiming to wrap around his opponents neck. The pirate king flips off his perch, using the momentum to fling the man as he releases the rope.

His target? The bowmen in the back.

"I /said/ she was honorary crew last night! That hasn't run out yet!" He calls to the archers that have obviously annoyed him.

Just because they are magic.

And they broke his gun.

Artemis' anger and violence? Well thats noted at least, but he's not quite sure what to make of it. Or even if he could make money off it!
Aeschere Childs That's the opposite of what she wanted! Being in a tree is a terrible idea under massed fire! "It is /not/ safe," she says between arrows. "Down, down, down!"

She follows her own instructions with alacrity; the right place to be against a formation of archers is /right in the middle of them/. With the spring of the branch lifting her, she launches out into the midst of the hunters; a lancer's trademark maneuver.

She arrives spear-first on someone's head, a small weight concentrated on a very fine point. She prepares to leave her lance behind, of course, there'll be no wresting it from her target if she strikes true.

Even as she descends, she coils to spring again, with no aim in particular. Height, she needs height.
Montag Montag is going to follow the others, Art seems to know what she's doing here. He has no idea what this stuff is other than it's dangerous.

"SO if you got an diea baout this more than I do! I was just out on leave time hunting!"

Montag looks to the others as he attemps to keep up with the rest it's quite the pace they set.

"So that's what you want to do?"

he goes for his back up pistol and pauses at Artemis.

"What what?"

montag has no idea how bad things are going he looks to warden.

"I totally agree with that!"

Well not entirely magical healing was good but that's about it. Prehaps it was his lack of talent for such?
Seith "/I/ would never kill our father." The demon answers Artemis, speaking words she might already be very aware of from the very bottom of her heart. A little while ago, she'd encountered an aspect offered to her by Ramza. The possibility than her very brother was not who she thinks he is.

The demonicly antlered and armored man quickly turns with her teleportation, bringing his sword up and catching her in her fall with the weapon - halting her in the air. His eyes glow demonically. "And it will never end. Because you don't have the heart to end it."

Warden's rope ties around the demon's neck... and the helmet pops off to reveal an empty armor!? What kind of opponents are they fighting here!? Still, the rope is tied enough around the lip of the armor's collar that he manages to get the thing to fly towards the bowmen, giving Aeschere her muchly needed reprieve.

The girl's spear stabs through one of the armored heads, but they are quick to bring their bow to bear, and attempt to fire straight through Aeschere's shoulder in that moment. Others fire with no care for eachothers' safety. But they are clearly trying not to shoot the horses!

And Montag gets arrows fired at his position simply because of association! Booooo!
Artemis Eurus Artemis holds to her blade with both hands, bearing down on the demonic spectre as he meets her every blow with his own--and Artemis, if she knows anything at all, knows how to fight. This is no mean feat. "I SAW you do it!" replies, flipping back to land on her feet and hold her blade before her, looking around for a moment to see how those with her are fairing. They seem to be holding their own.

Artemis turns her attention back to the dark warrior, eyes gleaming with rage. "I swore to avenge him..." she begins, the darkness of the forest shifting around her like like half-glimpsed ghosts. Vengeance calls.

Some sins can only be paid in blood.

"I have the heart," she says, voice dark as the night around them, charging in with a roar and her sword held to slash, spinning and reversing her grip quickly as she leaps upward to try to stab the rider through the heart.
Aeschere Childs Broadheads clatter off her breastplate like a cloudburst, but their angle is favorable and her armor thin at the joints. A sure shaft finds a join and sinks deep in her right arm, changing her plans significantly. She alights in a treetop again, and, pale and grim, extracts the quarrel as still more rain down on her. Here their shots are not quite so clear; hers is plain enough.

A searing black bursts forth, as though her very blood rebelled against this affront, and she casts a night-dark javelin blindy into the fray, before retreating to the far side of the trunk to stem the bleeding.
Warden Thache Magic. Mayhem. Old revenge. Drama. Battle. Its like he is caught up in an epic tale. If he was a bard then Warden would be loving it. Unluckily for those suits of armor? He is /not/ a damn bard.

He is a pirate.

And he's now upset.

Slightly taken aback by the fact that the damn things are actual suits of empty armor, the man sighs once before he starts to stalk forwards. His hands drift inside the coat and when they reapear they are filled with pistols.

"I." BOOM. "Grow." BOOM. "Tired." BOOM. "Of this magic!"

Every energy cannon goning off hearlads a shot sent not at the riders, but at the horses. He drops the spent pistols only to pull two more from under his coat. Then two more.

He is either making himself a large target to keep them off other people. Or he's just pissed off and doesn't care much for horses. He might never say which.
Seith The demon smiles. She can't see it, but she can feel it somehow. Somehow in that small expression - just peeking through those visors - she can see it. It's smiling at her. Grinning at her. Making light of her! Artemis filled with rage comes for the demon, and it meets her dead-on. As her sword comes out to slice down towards his heart, the creature falls for her feint. The two blades slide across eachother.

His passes along her clothing, cutting into her arm and the cloth there, whilst hers does truly pierce its heart. And the moment it does, the thing's helmet falls off. And finally reveals a twisted version of her brother's face. For a moment, she might recall how it'd been during that curse. The nerdy and goody-good-shoes version of Louis. But that's gone now.

"You couldn't save me. So many times now, you've not been able to save me. In your dreams. In your nightmares. Every single time... it's the blade." The man answers her. Still, his eyes glow in demonic colors. "Your heart is filled with rage. And even now that you have avenged your father for the thousanth time, your heart will still remain filled... with anguish."

0/But there is a path to save him./

The night-dark javelin of Aeschere's finds its way into the center of the wild hunt's bowmen, blasting the ground through its strange and dark magics, blasting apart the horses that they guard. Warden furthers this by firing into the mess. A threesome of them move off of their steeds and step down onto the ground, and then come running straight for him. He might want to start running!

0/There is a path to save even the men at your side right now./
Artemis Eurus The sword pierces through the memory of flesh, darkness parting, resisting as flesh and bone would resist, sensation so easily pulled from her memory.

Satisfaction burns through her chest, so quickly turning to anguish as the helmet falls and the resemblance of her brother speaks.

Speaks the things she's told no one. The nightmares. The darkness, the blood...over and over and OVER, repeating in a sickening loop, a cycle that could never be escaped.

Artemis drops her blade, stained with blood despite the nature of their enemy. Shaking, she steps back, her mouth wordlessly saying 'no' repeatedly.

She's cursed. She must be cursed. The whole there no escape? She can't keep living like this--and oh, she'd made the choice before. Once she'd died on her brother's blade, they'd died together. Twice she'd been unable to live with herself, fallen on her own blade...several times, she had kept going, found something to live for again, only to have it ripped away from her...

"" she whispers, sobs hiccuping from her throat.

A voice in the dark reaches out toward her. Chest heaving, she listens, looking toward the others that are there with her, fighting still. Are they even real? Can she chance thinking they are not? Does she even care?

"I want out...break this cycle...TELL ME HOW!" she demands.
Warden Thache Oh Warden starts running alright.

Towards the suits of animated armor.

The captain might seem man, or suicidal to charge such things with no pistols left. No armor. Seemingly no defenses at all, but Warden usually has a method to his madness. Usually at least.

He drops his hands to the hilts of his blades and before he closes the distance there is a snap-hiss of the energy cuttlass burning to life. The split second before the armors reach him. The moment before their demonic weapons come to bear, he leans his weight back and lets momentum carry him forwards. A baseball slide between a pair of the armors, his swords flickering towards the joints in order to take their legs out.

The helm came off easy, why not the other pieces.

He doesn't stop however to note his handywork. Stillness is death on a battlefield like this and he springs to his feet, continuing his dash to make for the trees on the other side of the fight.
Seith 0/Take the power you attained from the forest into your fist once more. Go back to the days where you overcame the darkness by letting it be one with you. Take grasp of that power! GRASP IT! And like you once were in CONTROL of every life in the forest - you can control the darkness within him. Within all of these beasts. BECOME THE HUNTER./

Darkness continues to rise from the body before her. The demonic face of her brother. She can feel it, can't she? Once upon a time, before she escaped from that forest, had it not been her ally? Or had she simply known it in another form?

Could she truly conquer that darkness and rip it out of him!?

0/The journey will be long and arduous. But you can do it./

The battle carries on around her. The demons are strong - incredibly strong. And there are so many of them. The Wild Hunt is not to be underestimated.
Warden Thache "Luv!" The pirate adds as he springs back to his feet, his words towards Artemis. He can't hear what she hears, but he can hear /her/ well enough. "If there is a way to break out of all this I suggest you take it!"
Aeschere Childs Recall the events of Aeschere's previous night, or hear them summarized: basically blown through the wall of a dive bar by a girl-shaped thermobaric warhead. She is not a well girl, and that arrow seems to have taken a lot out of her. Or maybe that lance did. You can't really tell with these dark knight types.

At any rate, if you think she's showing her anything from behind that tree, you're a greater fool even than she. From the sound of it, and what glimpses she can catch, the black riders have mostly lost interest in her, in favor of flattening the captain and the soldier. Briefly, she's torn; nobody's paying her to stick her neck out this time, but mmmmaybe there's some coin in it afterwards. Warden seems to be pretty free with it.

Currently, however, what's torn about her is her damnable shoulder, and she isn't really looking forward to descending the tree single-handed. She inspects the enemy's outside line for someone to break her fall with, and draws her knife. She doesn't have another spear in her right now, so she throws her weight behind the long blade, and she throws herself at the back the least suspecting hunter she can find, hoping to make a break for Warden in the ensuing confusion.
Artemis Eurus Become the Hunter.

Part of her had always known. A young woman crushed by the events of her life, fleeing for years, scraping by in the wildnerness as she was hunted by the Church. Running, always running. In the ruins of an abandoned library she'd taken a new name.

Artemis. A goddess of the hunt.

The voice, do the others hear it? She looks toward them, but they are fighting for their lives as far as they know. No, the voice is for her. Does some god reach out to her now? Some god of darkness and death? Does it matter? Her hands are stained with blood from this lifetime and a dozen others. If the cycle can be broken...

Artemis looks toward the twisted form that was, or at least represented, her brother, extending her hand toward him. "Become the Hunter..." she mutters, pulling the darkness around herself like a cloak, her eyes taking on the reflective quality of night predators. The mask she wears expands in clouds of black night.

She draws on the darkness before her. Opens herself to it. Let's it in.
Montag Montag is a bit of a stranger to this as he's fallen into the Shinsec seems a bit on the confused part but he's wisely not opening fire. That could be the worst thing, as he notices to see the other thigns coming at them. he's not about to start shooting he's about to start moving however Oh why did he have to go this place in the woods? He is not even getting paid for this suffering today, this is such a bad day for him.

"Come on tin cans catch me if you can!"

Okay that was dumb but? The lady seemed to need some help she was clearly having a crisis a pretty serious one and keeping these things distracted would be a good idea. He's not sure what to say about her choices his own experiance about the Darkness has been pretty bad. He doesn't know this woman how could he help.

"...That sort of thing generally isn't a wise idea!"

It's not much but he's saying something.

"I never seen such things end well for anyone!"

He works at Shinra he knows about energy fields larger than one's head!
Seith Warden shows his skill in twin swordsmanship - the blade swishing and swooshing (those are technical terms) across his opponents blades, parrying them aside. They have much power behind them however, and threaten to push him back. It's his reliance on his dexterity that allows him to come out scott-free, and able to cut away a single one of the armored demons' legs. It falls apart... and he ends up about to be surrounded by a new group during his flight.

The hunters continue firing on Warden and indeed seem to have forgotten about Aeschere momentarily. But the moment she drops down on one of the armored husks and causes it to go tumbling to the ground - helmet rolling away from its body - two of them quickly turn. As if there was some kind of hive-mind, they noticed her and immediately open fire.

A new group forms up on Montag, blades come free from their scabbards and come to approach Montag as they come running in an attempt to get in her way.

And then...

They suddenly stop.

As Artemis draws in the darkness, the depths of it begins to infect her cloak, the star-scape like innards starting to come alive as her masks drifts clouds of darkness out into the night. And the armored beasts all stare at her.

The same way wolves would look to their Alpha. She might realize. The darkness she just took into herself was that of her own. That of the hunter. A packleader of a sorts.


The Leader of the Wild Hunt!
Aeschere Childs It's hard to track someone sprinting under your horses, I think we might agree; Aeschere manages with the entire rest of this week's supply of luck to avoid catching another arrow anywhere but her hair, until suddenly nobody is shooting at her. Nobody is shooting at her because everyone is staring at Artemis as if they'd all just realized their grave error. Chera realizes yet another of her grave errors, and resolves to correct it by making for the relative safety of Warden's immediate vicinity.

"I think this now means we run away," she states, obviously.
Artemis Eurus Artemis looks upward into the canopy of the trees. She feels like she is breathing in the night itself, each breathe of cool evening air seeping into her veins and singing to her the battle-songs, the song of the Hunt manifests in howls and the pounding of hooves across the sky.

Artemis turns her dark visage toward Montag at his words. "I don't care, so long as it ENDS."

Artemis turns, taking up her blade before she swings up into the saddle of the nearest horse-beast. The mantle of leadership of the Wild Hunt falls over her as she raises her sword to the air to rally the pack.

Her voice cracks like thunder through the forest. "THIS IS THE WILD HUNT! JOIN OR DIE!" she says, horse rearing dramatically before charging forward.
Warden Thache "I think that might be the most prudent," Warden has an arrow in his shoulder. A second one in his hat, and one sitcking out of the side of his coat. That one missed, but its stuck there.

He glances at his guns on the ground then shrugs. He can always steal more guns.

He only has seven or so lives left though.

"Spooks, her wound." And the racoon flits out of a tree to swoop close to Chere, dropping a bottle of what looks to be a healing potion in her hands. "Cures what ails ya miss!"

Warden's attention is drawn back to Artemis as she takes on the form of the thing she just killed. He raises one eyebrow at her declaration.

Then he grins. He grins widely. "Nothing ventured..." And the pirate spins to grab the saddle of an empty horse. "...nothing gained! I'll risk it." He calls with a laugh as he turns to offer Aeschere a hand up.

He /did/ say he would wing it.
Aeschere Childs More potions. She still hates the taste of them, do you know, she sees so damn many of the things. He's right, of course, but she waits until he's hauled her aboard BY THE LEFT ARM PLEASE thank you. She's not much of a burden anyways.

Safely? mounted, she downs the potion and grimaces. "Later I'll bill you, you know that." He hasn't got enough gil on him, oh no, or he couldn't have climbed the horse.

"And what next do we do to who we find?"
Montag Montag has said his peace at this point, he does not have the personal attachment to press harder on the warrior woman. He's done more than many might have though, he actually said something right? WAs it enough, he does back off at Artemis. He does not like this, he does not like this at all this is like when Hojo or worse the creepy lady from the lab below comes to you with an /idea/ that involves you.

"Well I have done more insane things..."

He says, he fought a huge heartless horror before after all.

He joins up but clearly isn't happy about it at all.
Seith As Artemis climbs her horse, another one appears besides her with another armored one. This one once again looks like her brother. But instead of demonic eyes or antlers for a helm, he looks like she remembers him being. From the past. When he was still in the academy, and she so rarely saw him...

When she still looked up at him.

The man smirks at her in a manner that shows understanding, before he looks forwards and draws his blade. "JOIN OR DIE!" He calls out alongside her. She need not kill him. He is her brother. Right at her side.

As Warden climbs one of the horses, a rider appears besides him too. A man in dark garbs and a horned headpiece. Long flowing silver-white hair, and a devilish smirk being expressed. Seith. And he seems to be happy with his handywork.

It is such a shame this illussion will have to end just a little ways into the wild hunt.

But the effects of this little story amidst the Castle Oblivion will reverb throughout the ages.

"As for what we do to them... that is for the Huntress to decide." Louis declares.
Warden Thache Warden actually throws his head back and laugh. Its a suprisingly deep laugh. A full bodied one that speaks of deep amusement. "Lady Lancer," He calls as he settles her behind him. "I wouldn't have it any other way! Now hold on."

The Captain pulls on the reins to cause his horse to rear dramaticly. Because this is a time for some goddamn dramatics. Then? He's off after Artemis and her hunt.

Though he does notice that illusion. That smirk and that flowing hair. A smirk appears on the cat's own face.

"You're the one holding her welcome party." He murmurs to the smirking white-haired figure before raising his voice again.

"Welcome to the fun, Huntress! I hope you enjoy yourself as much as I have!"

He has to admit. He /is/ enjoying himself.

This scene contained 42 poses. The players who were present were: Seith, Montag, Artemis Eurus, Aeschere Childs, Warden Thache