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Port Royal Sniffers
(2013-01-20 - 2013-01-20)
No description.
Skoll Ulfang A Shadow Portal leads from Phantasia Mountain to this place, yet it is a place that not many 'leave'. There are pirates here, and they are fiesty folk. Folk who will lure you in with ale, and then knock your boots off for your gold! Welcome to...

One of the bars is being especially loud today. It is a shame that Avira no longer is her monsterous self, for that sniffer might have been useful in the search for one Skoll Ulfang. There's a variety of people here, but to get them to talk - our two heroines are going to need a special kind of convincing. Especially since one of them looks not quite human... lest she has disguised herself properly.

Avira Avira's mutate form did have a number of advantages despite the appearance. The heightened senses and the power of flight were the ones she finds herself missing the most, especially now as she heads to Port Royal, the last known place where Skoll's phone had been active. A previous time, Avira had been exploring to this place and did know a thing or two about it. Namely, she knew that it could be pretty dangerous to a pair of lone woman if they weren't smart about everything.

Rowdy bars like this especially. Avira knows, though, how to play the game. She knows to look at everyone fiercely, not incicingly. Let her scars shine proud, give off the distinct impression that she herself was a terrifying, blood-thirsty pirate that should not be messed with...or ignored, should she want something. "We can't scare 'em too much." Avira tells Zia quietly, "Or else they'll clam up and run away. We have to be firm. And fierce. Lots of these folks run on reputation, after all."

...which they didn't have any of in these parts, at least to Avira's knowledge. Who knows how far tell of VALKYRI had spread? With no specific leads, the most crowded bar is where Avira begins their search, starting with the bartender himself.

Of course, she orders a drink first before pestering him (or her) with questions.
Zia Oh for the love of... why does it have to be pirates? While the cities within the World of Ruin might be more open to those inhuman creatures like her own kind, this is a bit too close to the way her world really was a few hundred years ago. These were times when people feared the unknown, hated magic, and generally saw anything other than human as an abomination. So, Zia is not apt to go wandering in unprepared, unless she ends up drawing the worst sort of attention her way - the kind that have swords.

The gargress has her feet covered in a pair of fuzzy boots that don't exactly move properly the way she walks, but at least it's close enough for now. The rest is taken care of by a cloak, which keeps her features nicely covered and luckily doesn't look as out of place here as it would in other worlds. She's listening, nodding once to Avira's words. "How aboot ye try the hard-route, 'n Ah see if there's anythin a smile cannae pry loose." Is the all-too-shy gargress really suggesting that she try getting information by flirting? Well, there are more unusual things in the world.

Her eyes are scanning the bar, and street beyond, for anyone who might have had a few too many and look as if they might have loose lips as a result.
Skoll Ulfang The barman, an especially thick and bulky looking type with two massive swords at either side of his waist and a mean scar across his face, eyes Avira as she comes in. In Port Royal, women are... well, unless they have a reputation - they tend to be ignored. But this one...

Avira has the scars to draw attention from a few of the Pirates within the bar, and one can already hear the happy 'yaaaarrr' that comes along with any new female wandering in. Assuming they're up to their standards of course! Pirates must have standards. The man leans in towards Avira, one arm onto the counter, and stares at her with one eye. "What will it be for 'ye, lassie? Or are 'ye here to take me along to crack Jenny's tea cup?"

In the meantime, Zia is busy trying to find other people who might look of any interest. There's a bunch of drunkards who are certain to ave loose lips... but wether they'll have something interesting to say is another thing. She does note a broken table in the far corner of the bar, shoved away because it will no longer 'do'. And along one of the walls is a massive scratch. But wether that is recent or from olden days...?

There's also a woman along with a male, who are busy betting against one-another over a game of dice.

Avira "Let's split. Divide and conquer." Avira suggests to Zia once they are inside of the bar. "...flirting you mean? I uh...well if you think it'll pry something loose." Avira grins, "Anything to help."

Oh there are certain other women that do draw attention! Avira is aware of those and has taken care to not dress like one of the colorful "lovely ladies" of the night out here. Yeah, she wanted attention, but not THAT kind of attention.

With the barkeep's attention, Avira leans forward to meet him in the eye. There's a pause of silence as she tries to wonder what the bloody hell he meant with this Jenny's tea cup business. Erring on the side of caution, she assumes it's a euphamism for something raunchy and smirks. "Maybe when there's a drink or two in me." she jokes, "Grog. Though I was hopin' you could help me out with something. I've been lookin' for a guy and I think he's been in this area. Fond of chains, long hair..."

She goes on to describe Skoll.
Zia One of the problems with trying to pry things from loose lips, is sometimes they are not the most attractive lips out there. These are pirates and other such folk, and alas, not all of them match the sexiness that is Orlando Bloom or Johnny Depp. Still, Zia picks up a drink somewhere along the way, left half-empty on one of the tables, then moves through the bar, trying to blend in. She's listening to conversations, trying to catch on to anything that might be useful, but her eyes are drawn to the scratch along the wall.

Her eyes take it in, and rather than stare at it, she instead leans against that wall, raising the glass towards her lips but not actually drinking. It's the gamblers who catch her eye next, maybe not quite as brave with the flirting as she'd thought she'd be. In any case, the girl comes over, standing behind the man so she can try to get some idea of the rules.
Skoll Ulfang The man listens to Avira while walking back to pour some 'Grog' into a big wooden mug, and grumps a little. "Some drinks coming up." He fills a second and then slams the both onto the counter and makes a low sound. "Hrrrrrr." Before he goes back to leaning on the counter. "If you's want me to talk, there's gonna hav'te be sum coin, lassy." The barkeep grumbles, making a motion by rubbing his thumb and index-finger together for her.

A single coin later, Avira finds out that she's been had. The man shakes his head. "Arrr, none such boy in our bar." he points out. Zia goes less noticed, because of Avira taking the attention away. Thus, the gargoyle ends up hearing of a 'beastie' being around. As for the dice. It seems simple: bet if you will roll higher or lower than your opponent. Draws and equals go into 'the pot'. Winner gets the bet and the pot.
Avira Already Avira is pulling out money. She has to pay for the drink, after all, and slides a stack of coin that her currency has magically changed into upon entering this area. "Thank you kindly." She says brightly for the drink, capturing the mug in one hand and taking a drink.

Sweet Faram, it tastes awful.

Swallowing painfully, she manages to get that mouthful down.

Staring low, she slips a coin his way, and gets nothing for her trouble. Angrily, she snorts at him. "Some good /you/ are." The now irate huntress pulls away from the bar and heads over to join her companion.

"He hasn't been here." she tells Zia. "So we should clear out. No sense in hanging around this den of vileness."
Zia At first, Zia just stands, watching a few rounds of the game so she can get a feel for it. The rules seem simple enough. It's the sort of thing she could easily manipulate if she had the urge to take these people for their money. Not that it would do her much good. Cleaning the floor with them is likely the sort of attention that they don't need. She's still doing that 'blending in' thing, occassionally miming sipping from her drink.

When Avira comes over, she doesn't take her eyes away from the game, but speaks sideways out of the glass. "There's been some sorta tustle here." One flick of her eyes motions to the scratch. "Let me give the boys over yonder a shot b'fore we go." She leaves Avira at the table, although there is a parting wink that suggests she wouldn't mind helping if the other woman decided to make a wager or two.

She heads towards the drunkards who had mentioned the 'beast', leaning nearby one of them. It's a motion meant to show just a little bit of her figure beneath the cloak without giving away the fact that she isn't human. "Seems like ye lands had a bit of an adventure." She muses, "Ah'd love te hear the tale?" She's putting on the sort of act meant to make it seem like she's one of those girls who gets off on adventurers, pirates... rogueish types. "Can Ah buy ye a few rounds of drinks?" She suggests, charmingly, hoping that might be enough to encourage them.
Skoll Ulfang "Harrrr." The barkeep answers, grinning widely and showing a dirty 'golden' tooth, watching Avira wander off. Seems he didn't think Avira was truly the type to actually give him what he wanted anyhow. The girl then wanders off to meet with Zia, who realized that some of the bar's features -- the scratch in particular -- was of some importance to the two of them.

As she makes her way over to the drunken men, the men open their arms. "Heeeeeey! Come cooome! Sit with us." The bunch of them eye Zia's figure up through those robes. "Come ooon, take the robes off. What'cha hiding under there, lassy?" Followed by a twosome of them going "yeeeeeeer"... Grinning wildly at her. She can see those gazes moving.

One of them then suddenly begins to laugh. "Aye. An advanture was te' be had! We didn't even know it. Some /huge guy/ sat down in the bar. Real big-like. Then comes in some fancy lady." The others nod along. "Yerr... real fancy. Not much on her. Skin was a bit green though. But..." - "Fancy..." - "Yeeeerrrr..." So they begin to tell their tale. "Tried to come on to the big guy. Rubbing all over 'im. Thought - must be ish sweetheart."
Avira "Lepresy." Avira says all too cheerfully when the pair of men harass Zia about removing the robes. "I trust you both want none of that, riiiiight?"

Thankfully, they're talking. What they say, though, certainly brings a hard look to Avira's face. Now she didn't want to assume that EVERY big guy that came down here was Skoll. Faram knows there are lots of big guys out there. However, that green-skinned woman they mention has Avira extremely suspicious.

She looks to Zia and murmurs, "That sounds a lot like the Gaudium lord I met. The one that threatened to make Skoll disappear."

Avira speaks up, casually setting her grog down on their table as encouragement, "What happened after that?"
Zia Oh, you can bet that Zia shoots Avira one of those looks at the mention of lepresy. Hrmph. "The lass is jus jealous, tha's all." She smirks, folding her arms. "Ye boys know ye need te do a bit more than tha te get a peek." She actually goes so far as to sit on one of the men's laps, if they actually let her after that comment. Then again, she doesn't /look/ like a leper. In fact, she could easily pass for an elf with most of her features covered as they are.

"Ah bet the fellow couldnae hold a candle te ye lads." She nods to the murmur from Avira, calling over a round of drinks for the boys. "Did this big guy have anythin te do wi' the damage? Looks like quite a brawl." The problem she's got with the story, so far, is that Skoll really isn't /that/ big. Not unless he's actually wolfed out. It would be kind of hard to miss a nearly seven-foot werewolf, though.
Skoll Ulfang The drunk men stare at Avira as she claims Lepresy, then look back to Zia, and back to Avira again... and burst into laughter. Oh, lepresy certainly is no laughing matter, especially not for these folk. Pirates - a single case of lepresy might ruin an entire boat after all. An entire crew. It's a death-sentence. But somehow, they are under the impression that if the scarred girl knows Zia, and is not showing any signs... she must be lying.

Doesn't mean Avira didn't just attract some attention however. Some people are looking over. But when Zia makes her comment about Avira being jealous, it appeases the pirates, who just /grin/ at the two of them. "Yarrrrrrr..." And then Zia goes so far as to sit on one of their laps. The man moves a hand to her shoulder, before suddenly a woman behind him smacks him over the head with a rolling-pin. "You keep your hands to yourself until the nice lady says you can touch, James!"

This is followed by a loud boisterous laughter across the pub, as apparently the pirate in question's mom has shown up and is now crossing her arms. The entire situation just got a tad bit surreal.

"Aye... he di'. Seems he and the lassy didn't agree with one another. The big guy tried 'a walk away from the lady, and she suddenly tried to grab 'im with witchcraft!" - "Yeeeer, witchcraft 'da was!" - "Aaaaye. Witchcraft. Weird green vines. Thought-y tha' was Davy Joneses lass for a moment."

"So this big guy tries to fight her and grabs this weird gray thing. Gets knocked out of 'is hand." - "I think George has 'tha thing." - "Ay thought 'he sold 'da thing be-now." - "Aye... sold 'it, he di'."

"So 'den he starts fightin' 'er. We clear out. Was a big guy and witchcraft, and nun-o-us wan'ta be turned inte frogs, ye hear. Turns out, big guy was a beastie! Hid it real well under 'dem robes too!" The men start eyeing Zia. After all, she'd promised a 'look-sie' for more story. "Ugly thin' too! All fur and 'da. Damn beasties are disgustin'. Worse than me mom's ars~" *CLUNK* there's the rolling-pin again. "YOUNG JAMESON PIERCE! WHAT DID AH~..." The rest of her yelling gets trapped amidst more boisterous laughter, while the barkeep brings Grog to the lot of them and demands payment from Zia.
Avira Avira takes a moment to shoot Zia a look right on back. It'd been her intention to give the gargoyle an excuse to remain cloaked and untouched! Who knows what kind of trouble it'll cause if they actually see Zia as herself here. Wait why are they lau-

Avira looks a little miserable now. Maybe she IS jealous. Wait, why is Zia sitting in the- "Wait, you shouldn't-" Avira seems quite opposed to encouraging these pirate's delinquency.

Ultimately, Avira looks a little put out and crosses her arms. Zia can do all the flirting she wants! Avira seems more than less inclined to participate. Further listening only worsens her mood as the pirate's words confirm that it was that particular Gaudium Lord in question. How, though, did she learn that she'd warned Zia? "Who'd George sell this thing to? And did you see where the two went?"
Zia Sometimes, Zia does things that some might not expect from the normally reserved girl. What few know is that she spent years serving a dark mage in a variety of capacities, so some skills do come back to her every now and again. This one, doesn't require that much effort. "Oh, Ah wouldnae dream of corruptin yer wee boy here." She goes so far as to toussle his hair. Her hands are covered by gloves, conviently with one extra fake digit just to make sure it doens't look too inhuman.

Sure, getting up close and personal with one of the pirates probably isn't the smartest of ideas, but it is the quickest way to get them talking, it seems. Keeping her tail tucked up and out of the way, and her wings back against the cloak so they look like some lining rather than part of her flesh, the gargress lets them get just a bit of a look at her midriff and loincloth, but then hides it again with a wink towards them. "Well, Ah can assure ye tha' there's no great furry beast under these robes. Nae yet, anyways." Some of them are a bit on the hairy side.5r
With poor 'James' getting it from his mom, Zia steps up from his lap with one of those 'oops' expressions, offering a few coins out to the barkeep for the drinks. She doesn't have much munny, herself, but it'll cover for now. She might have to pick up a few courrier missions once they track down Skoll to keep herself from having to dumpster dive for dinner, but it isn't too much of a stretch. Better to wait for now and see if they answer Avira's question.
Skoll Ulfang Ach, poor Avira. The men just laugh right along, smirking at the robed lady who is dancing to 'their tune', or so they think. Now and again, Avira gets a look of course. She's still a nice looking young lady after all. Still, they are now in a good enough mood to converse with Avira as well. "Aye... we saw where they went." The bunch of them grin. "We'll tell 'ye, for a price..." While 'James', whose 'mummy' has finally stopped hitting him, comments; "George selled 'i to sum peddler. Sailed 'ta Hawaii, tha' un!"

After one of the girls surely pays them that extra bit, they speak again. "Aye, they ran into the wilderness. The witch-lady actually hurt the beast quite bad. Probably can follow tha blood if 'ye wanted to. But I wouldn't if I were 'ye! Tha forest got haunted after they came here." One of the men comments, while the others are still busy wolf-whistling at Zia. "Ah loincloth 'eh? This 'un is a keeper." One comments. "Ehhheeee- arrrr-aye."
Avira "Hawaii?" There's a look of consternation on her face. The grey thing may very well be Skoll's cell phone. But it also might be something much more important, though Avira's not sure what. On the other hand...well, it's HAWAII. That's actually a really great excuse to go visit Hawaii.

A faint sigh escapes her and Avira reaches into her little pouch, grabbing a few more coins to toss at the pirates for payment. "...she WHAT?" There's a sinking feeling in her stomach now. What if they really did kill Skoll? Hati would be so angry with her-AND SKOLL WOULD BE DEAD, worst of all!

"Tch. Haunted." she looks to her flirtatous companion, "Zia, I think we may have extracted all we can from here. We ought to..." she eyes the last pirate to speak, "...depart."
Zia There's a good many places that Zia has heard of, but certainly never been to. Hawaii is one of them, and the one that exists in this world is clearly not part of their own. On her feet now, the gargress steps back, looking over at Avira with that look of shared worry. The flirting had only been for one purpose, and that was getting the information they needed. That done, she nods once. "Aye, lass. Ah think we best get a move on." While she has some idea that Skoll is a tough cookie, she hasn't seen him come back from the edge like Avira has, which makes her just that much more afraid for his sake.

It's likely that a couple of the pirates would try to get her to stick around, especially now that they've had a glimpse beneath the robes, but she doesn't seem to respond to their calls as she makes for the door. "We'll move faster if Ah fly us te the edge'a the forest." She notes. As small as Zia might be, gargoyles are known for their strength. The moment they make it outside the building, she grabs for the stone wall with her hand. "Grab on lass. 'n hold on tight."
Avira All too happily, Avira moves to exit that bar.

It helps that Avira is a pretty tiny person herself. So it's not all that hard to actually lift her, even with all of her gear on. "Are we going to fly?" she asks excitedly.

She's /really/ missed being able to fly, since becoming human again.
Skoll Ulfang "Aye! Stabbed 'im with some of those vines! Big guy then ripped 'em outta her and limped off. She just chased after 'im like no'in happened. Witchcraft I tell 'ye!" James speaks up, shaking his hand. "Aye, witchcraft." Some of the pirates agree, nodding their heads. Then Avira has to point out that they're going to be leaving. "Oye, leavin' already?" Some of the men even go 'awwww', getting all grumpy and sad that the new ladies are departing.

"Ahh! Come back lassies!" Some of them wolf-whistle after them, thinking that somehow this will get them to come back. "Don't you worry about the furry beast! I can give you all the furry beast you need!" One calls. While another shouts; "Arrr, stiff 'em, who cares about them dirty beast-lovers."

Still, they make it out just fine. And with Zia able to glide the two there, the trip is made sufficiently short. It's not that far from the port either. There's many tries, and somehow... things are dark. It's like the 'time' of the world changed to one of night. There's even a moon out now! Yet the forest is silent. No hoots of owls. No animals. Only the sound of wind beating against the trees and their leaves - and the bushes. Vines litter the place as well.
Zia "Aye, lass." Unlike Avira's feather-winged form, Zia has to get some height first in order to be able to catch the wind, but the rooftop of the tavern serves well enough. It's not too hard to keep both of them aloft with her bat-like wings and a hint of magic to make sure the updrafts keep them moving at a steady pace. The landing is a bit more troublesome, requiring her to backwing, take a few steps for balance, and then steady herself against a nearby tree to let the other woman down. "Nae quite as fast as wha ye were able te manage, but nae bad, eh?" She asks with a smirk, pulling her hood back now that they are out of the city.

There isn't much time for frivolity, though. The darkness of the night, the silence of the woods, it's all a little unsettling. "Somethin... isnae right here." She says, ears tucking back. She toes at some of those vines, having caught the mention of them earlier and carrying a wariness about them. "So... what do ye remember aboot this woman who was harassin ye about Skoll? Anythin tha might be useful te us?" Better to ask now before they get attacked by vines or something.
Avira Avira all too happily climbs onto Zia's back and holds on, her arms wrapped carefully around her neck as she tries to avoid where the wings meet her shoulders as much as possible. She too did have to ferry a few people around in her mutate form so she knows what back muscles should remain unblocked.

"Yes. She controlled plant growth, it seems. And she had a bit of control over darkness. And she could regenerate. She was a fierce fighter...I was able to escape her as a mutate."

Nervously, she bites her lower lip and takes out her weapon, arming herself. "Watch everything carefully. If anything starts moving on their own, cut it down without question." Avira's on edge and now quite silent, using the skills she had learned, from Skoll no less, to keep her awareness of her surroundings extremely high.
Skoll Ulfang The vines that Zia toe-nudges don't move. Still, it was probably a good idea to do so, for indeed, as Avira points out, there's a vine-lady on the loose out there somewhere... probably. Yet it's so quiet. As the group moves into the forest, they notice why animals are being quiet though. Plants that don't belong here - man-eaters with feathers laying at their lips. Vines having formed over larger animals. They don't move anymore. This happened a while ago.

Things remain dark the deeper they go in, but no matter what, there's always enough light to see 'just enough'. It's atmospheric at best.

The two continue further in, until suddenly... there's a roar. A loud, painful roar!
Zia While her travels had never taken her to this particular world before, it isn't hard to recognise these plants as something entirely alien. They just don't look like they belong. "Dark sorcery." She whispers, plucking up a feather from the ground. The sights of dead animals, strangled by the plants only draws a sort of shiver from her. While some modern gargoyles may not have that connection to nature, Zia whispers something under her breath as they pass. "This is the worst sort of evil." These plants needed to be destroyed, but they are not her first priority at the moment.

Haunted or not, evil-plant infested or not, she covers her nose and goes onward, moving deeper into the forest. Gargoyles are masters of night vision, so the darkness doesn't bother her, and it does at least cut down on the gruesome sights around them. The roar, on the other hand... that stops her cold. "Skoll?" It's impossible to tell if it's him or not, not just by the sound, but it sends a chill down through her stomach.

With only a glance towards Avira, Zia bolts in the direction of the sound, racing on all fours.
Avira Similarily, Avira feels her stomach turn. These plants don't seem native at all or else so many animals would have not been felled to them! Avira keeps a tight grip on her sword and her mind primed to unleash an ice spell at a moment's notice, should she need to.

Zia might notice now that, around Avira's neck, that white crystal she wears is glowing faintly in the dark. It's a double edged sword since it provides light and signals to whatever may be lurking in the forest that she's RIGHT THERE.

Moving quietly as she does, she doesn't even yelp when that loud, pained roar calls out. "I..d..don't know if that's him-" but it could be. Maybe Skoll fled into the forest and has been running ever since! He could probably survive pretty long in the woods due to his upbringing, come to think of it.

Very swiftly, Avira takes after the gargress, hot on her heels.
Skoll Ulfang The two keep running and running, until they finally come out into a clearing! There, before their eyes, is Skoll. The massive werewolf, on his knees. His both hands tried around by vines and pulled behind him and to either sides. His both legs are wrapped around and pierced by further vines, forcing him to the ground. A massive chain collar now lays around his neck. The beast is baring his teeth at a robed woman, growling at her. Further vines are placed through his chest and wrapped around it, keeping him from standing up. There's massive amounts of dead vines around, showing that he's been resisting all this times.

"I just don't get it." The woman complains, pressing a small metal box with a big button on it. Each time she presses it, sparks violently spark around the neck-brace. "This is supposed to make you obey me! Why isn't it wooorkiiiiing!" She complains, throwing a tantrum of sorts. She's entirely focussed on the bloodied werewolf, whose body looks like a mess underneath the pale moon's light. his ears are laid back, his tail looks mangled, and some parts of his body look twisted in positions they should not be.

"Let me go Alg~ghhaaaaa!" SPARK, the girl presses that button again and keeps it pressed. "You should know better than to speak back to me, flea-ridden jerk."
Avira Seems Avira was partially right. Skoll did manage to survive all this time. Remain uncaptured, well, that didn't seem to really be the case. But even if Skoll was greviously wounded before, his superior regeneration powers probably helped him survivel all these past few days. Thankfully for him, Zia and Avira have arrived just in time.

Avira only hears have the conversation involving the collar though. She mostly just sees Skoll there, bound and chained, and immediately sees red.

Ice magic fills the length of the Spine and Avira slashes the sword ahead of her, unleashing a wave of ice that forms up into a sharp, slicing crescent aimed right at the woman. Otherwise, Avira doesn't take time to announce her presence. Time to use the element of SURPRISE!
Zia In normal circumstances, rushing in without thinking ahead would probably be considered the worst thing someone could do. Never-the-less, sometimes things happen and people react on raw instinct and adrenaline. When the forest clears to the sight of Skoll in that tortured form, Avira isn't the only one seeing red. Zia's eyes change into a dark, bloody color, flaring with her own anger as she snarls. She wouldn't have forgiven the woman for torturing the creatures of these words, but to see her hurting Skoll as well. Well, all bets are off.

There is ice from one side, courtosy of her companion, but Zia aims for a different target. A bolt of lightning lashes from her fingers, sent right towards the little metal box with the button. The intention, of course, is to fry the little device, keeping this sorry excuse of a woman from causing him further harm with it. "Ah think ye should listen te him." This is the first time she had encountered one of these Gaudium Lords, and by all rights, the gargress should be afraid. There is so much damage that her abilities did - not only to Skoll but to these woods.

Then again, when someone you care about is in danger, you don't always think straight. Right now, they could be facing off against a dragon and it's doubtful either of these women would think twice about rushing to the rescue.
Skoll Ulfang With the speed of lightning, Zia's attack actually manages to connect first. The shock zaps into the device and shatters it, making the thing literally explode in her face! The plant-woman quickly covers her face in the moment it happens. This gives Avira an even better suprise-attack as she can't even see where it is coming from. The crescent of ice splashes straight across the plant-woman, freezing the robes she is wearing on one side and partially harming her face.

The plant-woman hisses, where-as Skoll turns his head and lets out a surprised bark. "Zia! Avira! No, you musn't! Run away!" It's not that he believes they can't take this woman. It's just...

The woman glares at Skoll, then at the girls, throwing the robes off and revealing her plant-like body with a burning tail along her backside, like a lizard's. The woman then brings her hand up, causing vines to snap up from the ground in a grab for both the gargess' feet and Avira's -- while simultaneously throwing a flash of flame out forwards that might be rather hard to evade if they were to get caught!
Avira "No! Skoll, we're here to help you!" Avira calls out, quickly closing the distance, gasping for air as she pushes her body to move as fast as it possibly can. There was no holding back here, no pausing, no stopping. She had to hit hard and fast and give it a hundred and ten percent. This woman was hard enough for her to fight while a mutate. To do it as a much weaker human...

Awareness of her surroundings would win the day here. She knows what this woman was capable of, "Zia, JUMP!" she warns before leaping herself, knowing that the plant life around them was going to go mobile and grab.

Now the fire, that was something new. She's not rendered immobile, but not expecting the fire leaves her open to it and despite her twisting, she does get hit by the blast, her hair and clothing singed. Frantically, she slaps herself with a palm filled with ice magic on the places where fire still clings to her clothing.

"We're here to take him back." Avira hisses, advancing on the woman and quickly closing in on close range, Spine at the ready.
Zia At the very least, the device is taken care of, and that means the plant woman can't use /that/ as a weapon against them. It isn't really a great victory, though. From what Avira had said, this woman is quite powerful, and even together it would be a tough fight. That doesn't mean much, though. No matter what end, this is an enemy she has to face. "Ah dinnae think so. Ye wouldnae leave us like this, and we willnae leave ye either."

This said, the gargress doesn't need to be told twice to leap skyward. Keeping out of reach of the vines will be important, and they seem to be everywhere. Maybe it's that split second quicker reaction, or perhaps the wind that rushes to help Zia get skyborne, but the vines snatch at her feet without finding purchase. Normally, it wouldn't be smart to get too close to an enemy, especially since she doesn't sport a warrior's armor or skill. But if she can find a way to free Skoll, then it would be three on one, not two.

Zia lands near the far side of the wolf, hoping that Avira will keep the 'Lord' distracted long enough for her to use her sharp talons to cut through some of the vines holding the werewolf's forepaws to the ground.
Skoll Ulfang It is very true. As Zia said, if either of these two were in the same situation, he would fight like his life depended on it. The werewolf is stuck watching as the girls attempt their fight against the lizard-like plant lady. "Tssk." The woman makes a sound as Avira ends up only 'singed', and runs forward in an attempt to grab her - her right hand turning into a massive venus-flytrap, acidic goo dripping from the mouth and everything - and tries to grab the hand that is holding the spine while at the same time being hit by the thing over her shoulder - partially getting cut there and dripping green 'blood'.

In the meantime, Zia manages to undo the bonds of Skoll's front paws, causing him to finally fall forwards to the ground - barely catching himself with his hands. The beast lets out a sickly whine, looking up at the gargess. "Zia..." He whispers, before closing his eyes and looking away in an embarassed manner. "The control... the darkness... it is growing." He whispers, before wincing and tucking his head towards his chest.

"Getting... too strong to resist." He adds, as little wisps of darkness whip up from his body now.
Avira It's a good thing that Zia is doing the much-needed work of freeing Skoll from his bonds, for Avira seems quite intent on unleashing her anger upon the woman that has been hurting Skoll so these past few days. "Your control ends /today/!" She insists, getting right up to the woman, only to be met halfway as the lady closes in on her.

The venus flytrap clamps down on Avira's wrist and right away, Avira is screaming and trying to pull her hand back, feeling the acid eating into her skin. The other hand swings forward in a closed fist at the woman's face.

"Furthermore-" Avira hisses, teeth gritted in pain as she glares at the woman, "You will cease your SPYING!"
Zia The vines give way underneath her claws, but that doesn't mean any of them are out of the woods just yet. As Skoll falls forward, Zia reaches for his shoulder, trying to get herself underneath him. Gargoyles are strong, but he's quite a bit heavier than what she can carry easily. "Come on, lad. Ye need te get up." She urges, tugging on his arm. The scream from Avira has her head snapping up, looking towards the two fighters. Her mind wars - help Avira, help Skoll. Damnit.

Then, the wolf whispers. Her concern melts in that moment, turning cold and forming into a ball of fear in her stomach. This is her first time being this close to his wolf form, but the gargress doesn't show any great fear of the beast. "No no no no..." The panic slips her from her usual thicker accent, trying to speak a bit faster as she reaches for his head. "Come 'ere. Ye cannae give in te them, do ye hear me?" She drops to her knees and tries to tug his head towards her lap. The motion leaves the poor girl quite vulnerable, but she's more concerned with Skoll than she is with the plant-woman.

"Ah willnae let ye give in te them. Ah'll kick yer sorry wolf arse, first. Now stand up and fight like Ah know ye can." Zia doesn't seem to pay much heed to the darkness around him. She needs to get through to him, and if that's not possible... then everything is for naught anyways.
Skoll Ulfang Avira's fist connects, and there is a satisfying 'CRUNCH' sound that goes along with it. The woman's head is partially 'turned' because of the hit, but she keeps 'staring' right back at Avira - her green eyes squinting before she 'spits' some of her blood to the ground. "You call that a punch?" She asks, raising her spare hand and lets the fingers turn into vines, that coil and wrap around eachother to form a spherical mace-like shape, and attempts to smash Avira - while she keeps trying to hold her other wrist with that 'flytrap'.

She has a wicked look on her face. "You think I am the one who spies? Girl, I am nothing in the grand scheme of things! ALL FOR THE EARL TYRANT!" Is her battlecry as that mace comes to move down.

A little away from the two fighting females, Skoll lets out a painful groan as Zia panics and tries to lay his head onto her lap. The beast turns his head a little as she manages this, while the beast's both hands grind into the grass as he seems to be fighting something. He bites down firmly, his tail laying still and his ears drawn back. Still, Skoll manages a growling laughter. "Heh... bet you would kick my ass hard." He muses, before trying to get up a little - to at least get back to his knees.

Still, those wisps of darkness. As much as they grow fainter, they remain.
Avira "Hah!" Avira pulls her fist back and continues trying to wrench her arm free. Since that doesn't seem to be working, she struggles, reaching over and pulling the Spine out of her right hand, those fingers loosening their grip upon the weapon.

'You call that a punch?'

Fear forms in the pit of Avira's stomach as she faces this woman down. For a brief second she glances over her shoulder and spies Zia holding a freed Skoll in her lap. What was going on?

Turning back, she sees that mace come down and lifts the spine to fend off the strike. It works and Avira manages to not get hit, but at the expense of her weapon clattering out of her grip.

With a sudden surge of strength, Avira tears herself free, leaving long deep scratches across her wrist in the process from the flytrap's teeth. The freshly freed hand throws a haphazard blizzard spell the woman's way. It's weak, but only meant to distract.

During the distraction, she scrambles for her weapon. Earl Tyrant, huh? Now that's a new name for her.
Zia The gargress's hands stay firmly on the wolf's head, knowing very well that if he were to snap and lose control, she's likely to be the first target. She lets out a whimper of her own, eyes searching, "Come on now..." She begs of him, "Yer the stronger than them. The darkness doesnae matter, all tha matters is tha /ye are Skoll/ the strongest wolf Ah've ever seen." His growl of a laugh manages to cause a quirk of a half-smile there, but it doesn't linger, "Aye, Ah would, lad. But the one who needs her arse kicked right now is tha one over there." She motions her head towards the plant woman.

As Skoll gets to his knees, Zia is quick to dart around, trying to get rid of the vines holding his feet. She can't do much about the chains, but maybe... maybe he can handle those himself. "We need te help Avira." She urges, "Ye do nae want her hurt, do ye? Or me?" She's trying to remind him of the things that matter to him. The people who care.

With her attention drawn two ways, Zia reaches out a hand and closes it into a fist, drawing a gust of wind harshly across the ground, hopefully with just enough force to knock the 'spine' back into Avira's grasp.
Skoll Ulfang The Spine does well in defending against the makeshift mace. Avira might even note that the sharp object in question manages to cut into it and cause a wince from the woman! It seems that even though that transformation had turned her body into a weapon -- it was still /part of her body/. The mace ends up going wide and Avira tears herself free. The Plant-woman stumbles slightly and tries to grab for her again, flicking acid towards her in that attempt - only to be blasted to the face with the small blizzard spell! The spell crackles against her body, freezing the right side of her face!

"Wwwhy youuu!" She rambles,

Zia's talk in the meantime, seems to be calming Skoll a little. "I don't want either of you hurt..." Skoll whispers to Zia. "Either of you could be the Golden Wolf... but more importantly... you're my friends." 'more importantly'? The werewolf continues to slowly get up, shattering the chains with his own strength... but unable to get the massive neckband off of himself no matter the tugging.

The spine is in the meantime dropped back into Avira's hands, just as the plant-lady lobs a whole series of fireballs at her, before jumping through the blasts they create in an attempt at grabbing Avira by the neck with the venus flytrap hand, and to grab her with vines from behind her - to tie her down to the ground and 'floor' her.

Skoll continues to get up, until he's fully standing, though leaning over somewhat in posture. "The darkness... it's not mine." He then whispers. "It's... not my darkness." It flares up a little, then dims again, causing the wolf to grab for his chest. "I'll help..." He then growls, looking at Zia with those golden eyes of his, before focussing forwards and starting to slowly move forwards.
Avira Very interesting. It dodesn't go unnoticed that the strike has made the woman 'bleed' from the weapon. Then, if these vines were an extension of her body as well, inflicting damage upon them should cause even more pain!

This realization dawns upon her as she scrambles backwards, scooping up the Spine which is pushed just a bit closer by Zia's magic, firmly into her grasp. As soon as she makes contact, she's calling onto her magic, pushing it through the weapon and making her strikes just a little more deadlier.

Ah Skoll. Avira might be proud of this conclusion, on behalf of her sister, if she had the chance to really process it right now. Instead, at the moment, she places all her attention into fighting against the woman. With her magic-imbued weapon, she works on slapping away fireballs, only to be rushed through the spell and ambushed by the Gaudium lord. Clamping onto Avira's neck is actually kind of difficult due to the metal high collar of her breastplate.

Though Avira can hear the rustle of vines behind her, there's not enough time to turn and strike them back. The vines ensnare her arms and wrists, yanking her backwards and binding them together. In spite of her kicking, her legs are also trapped, securing her firmly to the ground.

"Zia! Skoll!" she calls out frantically, turning her head as much as possible to prevent the woman from getting a firm grip on her neck or face with that venus flytrap.
Zia If Skoll's strength can't remove the collar, then there isn't much that Zia is going to be able to do for it. Right now, with his hands and legs freed, that seems to be as much as she can manage. Pulling the vines away from him, the gargress scrambles to her feet. The werewolf's words don't even really register with her, there is far too much going on to worry about some legend. There's no time to really worry about it.

She looks back in time to see Avira get snared by the plants, and with a snarl, Zia reaches out and grabs one of the nearby vines with her hand. Frost forms on her fingers, taking the easy path right towards the plant-woman. She's trying to freeze the vines holding Avira, turn them brittle and make them easy to smash. "Workin on it, lass!" She calls, hoping that Skoll can manage to keep control of himself long enough to lend them a hand... paw, whatever. They can worry about the darkness later.

Normally, the gargress would rely on lightning, but with Avira wearing more metal than her opponent, it seems like a bad idea. Instead, she tries to focus on water, even if it is the weaker of her two elements. "Come water. Power of life, heed m'call. Fight back against this beast which has hurt ye 'n all who live within." With a movement of her hand, Zia manages to pull water out of the air, from the leaves of a nearby tree, perhaps even some from the plant-woman herself, sending the whole mess right at her in a blast of very, very cold water that is bound to connect with her own icemagic and turn her into a plantsicle if she doesn't lay off.
Skoll Ulfang Skoll's eyes go wide open when the plant-woman manages to 'snare' Avira and bind her to the ground like some mere 'pet' being held down to its pole. The woman starts to cackle loudly, wildly, letting the other hand turn into a sharp needle-like weapon and pulls it back while she grabs for Avira's face with the flytrap. She's just about to stab the girl with the other weapon when Zia makes it to the girl's side and freezes the vines holding Avira, probably allowing the girl to avoid the stab just barely... but one way or the other - that stab moves forwards, even going so far as threatening to pierce Zia.

That's when the gargess' hand draws water and ice towards the plant-woman, and /splashes/ her! The fire at the end of her tail even goes out, and with the frost, the woman turns into a solid rock of ice for a moment. One can see her teeth showing with her mouth open in a wry look, and her eyes blink twice... before suddenly the woman breaks the ice and stretches out her arms. "RAAAAH! HOW DARE YOU!" She then glares at Skoll who has gotten closer.

"You! MUTT! KILL THESE TWO!" She then suddenly yells out...

And there's sparks. The two can probably see the dark wisps that suddenly rush off of Skoll, and the way the beast seems to try and hold back against some kind of pain. There's red flashes in his eyes, and one of his clawed hands moves to his forehead. The beast grits his teeth, shaking at first, before suddenly storming forwards and trying to ram the flat of his hand against the plant-woman to smash her down to the ground... "I AM AN HONORABLE WOLF!" He calls out. "NOT SOME MUTT."

He succeeds in this, and only this, before the woman yells at him again. "LET ME GO! LET ME GO!" Her hand waves out towards his neck and her tail then slams against the metal brace, causing the wolf to let out a strange howl and back off, grabbing for his forehead again.
Avira Grunting, Avira tries to push herself back up to her feet, knees and legs scraping and pawing at the ground as she tries to uproot herself. Her head sways wildly, ducking beneath the flytrap when the woman tries to grab for it. Even immobilized, she's not letting this woman have an easy go at doing her in.

She feels the ice grow along the length of her mindings and with a sudden surge of movement, she shoves herself backwards onto her back, the sharpened needle stabbed out overhead where her face just was.

Squirming, she rolls sideways and rips herself free of the vines. In another second, she's on her feet, breathing hard, and holding out the Spine before her. "Thanks." she says breathlessly, fighting off a shudder. That Gaudium Lord calls out to Skoll to kill them both.

He does not obey. Avira smirks as he lashes out and slams the woman down to the ground.

"Zia! Now's our chance!" Avira calls out, not one to waste an opportunity. She rushes in, just after the woman hits the metal brace, and stabs downward into her with an inverted grip upon the Spine.
Zia The white gargress holds on to the vines a bit longer than is needed, perhaps, but right now, her main concern is for Avira, not for herself. As the needle-like blade comes close to her, she pulls back, but it leaves a gash along her forearm. A few drops of crimson drip down, but there isn't time to worry about it.

Seeing the plant-woman frozen in place is enough to make her nearly smile, but it lasts for only a breath before she breaks free, sending shards of ice everywhere. Raising a wing, Zia shields herself from it, her heart beating fast as she hears that command being shouted in Skoll's direction. Like a deer in the headlights, the girl's ears tuck back, hoping beyond hope that they won't just end up having to fight him. For all her boasts about kicking his butt, there had never been any intention of following through on the threat.

"Skoll, fight it!" She calls out. It isn't often that she uses his name, so there's the hope that it reaches through. Luckily, he does seem to resist, and some part of her cheers as he plows the plant-lady into the ground. Taking the opportunity, Zia grabs for one of the lashing vines, grabbing into it and using what power she has to channel a heavy dose of electricity into it. It's not often she uses her magic by touch, but she can't risk hitting Avira or Skoll, who would easily be better targets for the force.

It may not be fire, but a good dose of electrical energy can surely turn a plant into a crispy critter.
Skoll Ulfang It's a good thing that the Spine is made of bone, and not metal. Because thanks to that, Avira and Zia can both deliver their blows at the same time. Avira's strike actually ends up pinning the woman into the ground along with her blade, followed by Zia's powerful electric shock. This time, the woman has no proper way of defending herself. Instead, green goo drips out of her just as her eyes widen and her mouth gasps open. Sparks of violent yellow course through her body, shaking her body while light radiates from her. She screams, but not in pain. She just screams at Skoll!

"Kill them! Kill them you mutt! DO AS YOUR LORDS COMMAND YOU!"

Skoll continues to grit his teeth, growling, howling, even going so far as whimpering like a cub. It's a sad thing to watch. Zia keeps calling for him to keep it together - and that seems to be enough for him to keep that semblance of control. The beast throws a hand out, and then lets out a howl. A howl that summons forth power. Energy.

There's a sudden wave of rich red that comes from beneath the woman. A rumbling sound... soon followed as a massive Phoenix bursts out form the ground. The corona of the summoned creature is enough to burn Avira and Zia even though they're at a bit of a distance. But the plant-woman herself... this time shouting again; "KILL THEEEEM!"

She is not so lucky. The flames engulf her and turn her to a monster's ashes. Leaving Skoll to howl and whimper as he tries to step backwards, shivering, clearly having more and more trouble resisting and going even so far as opening a Portal of Darkness right besides him. He doesn't step through yet, but it looks like he intends to flee...

And what's worse... what if the Phoenix had indeed burned them?
Avira Smelling the incoming ozone of the attack, Avira actually lets go of the Spine, letting it stay as it leaves the Gaudium Lord pinned to the ground. Avira's quick to reclaim it after the danger of possibly getting caught in spell crossfire has passed. She backs away now too, looking frantically to Skoll. She sees the collar around the neck and her eyes widen.

She recognizes that collar. The woman had tried to use it on her a month ago! "DON'T LISTEN!" she calls out, her voice barely heard over the rumbling.

This close to the Gaudium Lord leaves her little time to prepare for the summon that comes afterwards. The corona of flames knocks her backwards several feet, leaving her burned and shaking from surprise. The monster woman's screams cease abruptly.

Was she...gone? For good?

Still shaking, Avira pushes herself up to her feet, "Skoll?" she calls out, staring at him with concern, "Skoll!!"
Zia As close as she is to the fighting, there just isn't time for her to really get out of the way as the power begins to build. She had seen his summons before, but never this close, and it's far too close for comfort. As the phoenix screams cut off the monsterous woman's own, the gargress sees the flames coming and knows there is no way of avoiding them. Instead, she wraps her wings in around herself, the force of the blast sending her backwards.

The pain is almost unbearable. Wings were a sensitive part of the body for a gargoyle, but luckily they aren't vital by any means. Bits of charred wood have left singed holes behind, but it's left most of her body beneath unharmed. Even so, her wings aren't likely to be able to be used for flight for a while.

Giving a whimper of her own, Zia moves her wings back, wincing at the pain lancing through them. That's when she sees the portal. "Skoll, no!" She calls again, pushing aside her own pain. "Avira, help me!" Even with the pain in her wings nearly blinding, Zia launches herself forward as Skoll fights against the control, leaping out to try and catch hold of one of his feet.
Skoll Ulfang It had happened after all. Skoll watches Avira get back up, his eyes having a bit of trouble focussing at first. But then he notices it. The singes, the burn... he'd hurt Avira. He hears the girl call out to him, telling him not to listen. But he'd already done it. He'd hurt them. The beast takes an instinctive step back, turning his eyes to the ground, his tail tucking between his legs. He's embarassed. He feels awful. He can hear the girl calling out to him, and he tries to turn his head away. "NO... I... I didn't mean to..." The darkness fans outwards from his body, trying to 'grab' at him.

Then Zia comes into sight, grabbing at one of his big paws. She holds onto him, and the beast looks down at her. Burned wings for her too. "I... I'm sorry." He keeps backing up a little further, easily dragging her with him with his massive werewolf strength. He shivers a little, as if both in pain and 'cold'. Red flashes over his eyes, like the tell of mindcontrol both of these have seen before.

"If I stay... I might hurt you two again. Please..." He whimpers, trying to step into the portal now.
Avira Avira sees what Zia is doing now. Knowing the werewolf's strength, she isn't sure it'll work, but when the gargress calls out for help...

...she's quick to come to her aid, throwing herself at Skoll's other foot. Her small size likely doesn't weigh him down that much more. Doing this just grinds dirt and debris into her burn wounds but she pushes through the pain for now. "If you don't stay, you'll never get better." The red flashes. She saw them now. "Skoll, please!!"
Zia Trying to keep the werewolf from leaving might be fruitless, but they have to try. Zia latches on to his foot, digging her talons into the ground to try to hold him. If he tries, it's certain that he could easily drag them both through, or dislodge them, but she clings on none the less. "Yer nae the one a fault. Ye havete stay so we can help ye." Hear ears tuck back, forehead pressed against his leg. Even as he moves, her feet dig in.

"Please." It's a word all three of them are using, the two girls begging him not to run, and the wolf trying to escape. "Let us help ye..."
Skoll Ulfang The werewolf halts when even Avira throws herself to his feet and grabs to hold-on for dear life. The beast halts with Avira now also on him. His ears lower further, and he continues to whine sadly. "Please..." He whispers. "It's not my darkness..." He adds, before shaking his head.

As much as he feels this is his fault, their cries at least relieve some of that guilt, some of that darkness. They have him stalling, standing still.

Yet the portal remains open. "What if I hurt you two? They'll just send more. And next time, maybe I won't be able to withstand their control. Already am I blinded by their words..."
Avira Much to Avira's surprise, Skoll actually stops. Leaning forward, she rests her cheek against his leg. "We know Skoll. We know they put it there to control you." Such a thing was pretty obvious, especially with what they'd both witnessed here tonight.

"And what are you going to do instead? Run? Go to them? Stay around us, I swear it'll help. That woman clearly didn't want us around you."

Nevously, she looks over her shoulder at where the woman had been. Sure, that was a pretty thorough burning, but she's seen this crazy lady regenerate before.
Zia With neither woman seeming as if they'll budge, it seems as if they're at a bit of an impass. Zia digs her talons in as much as she can, making sure that it won't be an easy thing for him to change his mind and run through the portal. When she lifts her head, there is a glassy sheen to her eyes and a determined expression. "We'll figure somethin out. We're smarter than they are. We're stronger than they are." Maybe it's a stretch, but Avira is right. They wanted to separate them from Skoll because whatever force these two women have, it's been enough to weaken their control.

"Trust us..." If it were within her power, she'd be ripping that collar off of him right now, but whatever darkness is in it, it seems beyond her skill alone. "If ye run, then yer givin yerself right te them te make yerself our enemy. The first thing they'll do is turn around 'n send ye right back against us. Ye know it, and so do we." She's trying to appeal to reason, but will he actually listen?
Skoll Ulfang The beast continues to look like he's about to bolt. Still, both of these woman are trying to help him. He can't just return to the Gaudium Lords like this. He's wounded. He just killed one of their own -- though just a 'mook' for the sake of scale. And indeed... they didn't want him near these girls. But that would just drag so much attention onto the both of them...

Skoll shivers, the darkness slowly slipping away a little... and the beast finally falls forwards onto his knees and lowers his head, the portal closing behind him. "I'm... so sorry..." He whispers. His body continues to shake, but at least he's not gritting his teeth anymore.

As for the plant-lady... she's ashes. She's not coming back. All that can be seen is the wind picking up some of the black dust and sprinkling it out into the world. An Unlimited's power... is substantial.
Avira Yeah, it would make them both a target. Avira didn't care. She had a solid group of friends to get her back and if those Gaudium Lords touched her, they'd have to contend with much more than just Skoll or Avira! She'll cling to him until he calms down. Fortunately, such tactics from Avira and Zia seem to be working.

"I forgive you, Skoll." she says, about to take the blame for this entire incident, but thinking against it. She starts to relax just a little, seeing that woman is gone for good. A Gaudium Lord with crazy grabby vines she would never, ever have to fight again!

Shakily, she starts to stand up. It's pretty clear that Avira can use some she makes good on this thought and roots around in one of her pouches, pulling out a potion.
Zia Gaining the attention of evil forces... well it wouldn't be the first time. Besides, with the current rumors going around, the gargress is likely to have to face her fair share of attention soon enough. When the portal disappears, Zia can't help but let out a sigh of relief. She's still pretty much sitting, wrapped around his leg, but her grip lessens just a little bit as she looks up at him. "It isnae yer fault." She reaches a hand out, trying to touch his arm. The girl is still a bit wary, and isn't about to let go of her leg-grab on his paw, not yet, anyways.

"We need te figure out a way te get tha collar off. It isnae helpin matters." As Avira gets to her feet, Zia looks to her, "Do ye see a latch, or anythin tha might help?" Knowing their luck, it wouldn't be anything quite so simple. She isn't so worried about her own injuries for now. It isn't anything that a day of stone sleep won't fix, even if it hurts like heck just now. She tries not to move her wings.

"Nothin te be sorry for, lad. Ye blasted that bitch good, 'n she deserved it." It isn't often that she uses crude language, at least the sort that isn't colorful and Scottish in nature, but clearly, she doesn't care for anyone who tortures people and animals for the fun of it.
Skoll Ulfang Skoll remains unsure, but there's no sign of a new portal opening. He doesn't reply to Avira's comment either, he just silently sits on his knees for a while, as the girls speak. He watches Avira take in that potion, and lets out a sigh before looking towards Zia, who is adamant about holding onto him for now. The beast moves one of his oversized hands to the girl's hand - covering the one that is now on his arm. "I won't run... I've... calmed down a little." He admits, shivering again.

As for the collar. Any investigation into it seems to suggest that there are... no openings. No joint, no slit, nothing. This has to be the work of magic. And what's worse - any severe 'tugs' on it end up 'sparking' the Wolf - hurting him and drawing growls from him... although he at least doesn't appologize for those growls. Instead, he just keeps his ears flat to his head.

"I know she deserved it... but I don't know about her sisters..." He whispers. "I know Avira's boyfriend supposedly destroyed one of them. But..." Wait, boyfriend?
Avira "Maybe we can pick it..." Avira suggests before examining the collar itself. Much to Avira's surprise, the seal seems to be perfect. There's no indication where it was joined, "...must be some kind of magic." she concludes with a concerned frown. She touches and pokes at it, causing a spark to suddenly surge through it.

Now she is doubly happy that this thing did not go around her neck. "Sorry." she mutters and circles around Skoll. "Can you change back to a human? Maybe it's too big to stay on you then. Or it'll give us more room to work with it and cut it off."

Her train of thought is swiftly derailed by two things, "She has /sisters/? How many? Wait what...boyrfriend?" She had a boyfriend? More importantly, who was telling people that he was her boyfriend? "-ugh, nevermind, who was it?" Priorities. She'll deal with the boyfriend thing later.
Zia Stubborn gargress is stubborn, and that means she isn't moving. When his hand covers hers, she offers him a soft smile, then rubs against his arm. "It'll be alright." How? well, that much she doesn't know just yet, but somehow...

She's watching the other woman's investigation into the collar, and winces slightly when it seems to just spark back. "If turnin back te human doesnae work, then maybe we can ask one of those other magicians." She kept having reasons to go speak to that Merlin fellow, anyways, and it's likely that the wolf's sister had some connections among the darker wizards out there if the need called for that. "There has te be a way." It's a big assumption, but if the vine-woman had been smart, she would have taken Skoll somewhere the girls couldn't track him to do her torture. She can only hope that there is some other way.

Now, Zia doesn't know anything about Avira's so-called boyfriend or not, so when the other woman seems so puzzled, the gargress just cants her head to the side. "Seems ye have boyfriends ye dinnae even know about, lassie." Kind of like people telling her that she might be a princess and not know it. Yeah, gotta love rumors. Still, "Wha sister are ye talkin aboot, Skoll?"
Skoll Ulfang Skoll shakes his head. "Not right now. I'd need a mirror..." He whispers, not adding that the transformation back doesn't come with the magical addition of clothing. "But... it's worth a try." Although he doubts it'll work. He feels that, if this is magic...

Still, he continues on to nod. "She was saying her sister got killed by a man of darkness. A mercenary." He explains. "She was a bit pissed about it, blamed me for that too. I don't know what she was talking about though. Why would they go after him? He has no link to me." He looks up to Avira. "Is he an Unlimited too?" He asks. Then he looks back to Zia.

"Well, you see. They're the Gaea sisters. There's four of them. Each with a different element's tail. Avira's boyfriend killed the one with the stone tail. I just did in the fire-tail." He figures they can guess which ones are left. "Those were the weakest ones..."

The beast then leans in and gently rubs his wolven head along Zia's cheek - a symbol of appreciation. It Avira is close enough - she will receive the very same gesture.
Avira "...Angantyr." Avira says softly, immediately realizing based on the description. Considering the man's very intense feelings towards her, it's easy to see where people would conclude their relationship was far more romantic. "...he never told me about that. I'm not sure why they'd go after him unless they were very interested in his darkness. He wa born with a very large amount." After a long moment she adds, "And he's not my boyfriend."

Thoughts of that /dream/ come back to haunt her. Choose!!

Having completed her inspection of the mysterious collar, Avira definitely is close enough to receive a nuzzle. After putting away the Spine, Avira actually gives Skoll a hug. "Skoll, can they only be killed by the Unlimited?"

Avira sounds sad to asks this...and a little scared. Hopefully the remaining two wouldn't catch her alone or she'd be toast.
Zia Normally, Zia isn't the sort to carry a mirror with her. Appearances have never been that important to the girl. She has her crystal, but it's just too small to act as any real sort of reflective surface. It's probably a good thing, since taking a look at herself, filthy and singed, probably wouldn't be a good thing just now. "We'll need te get ye home 'n seen te, then we'll worry about the magic side of things." The way that he'd been held down, it wouldn't surprise her if he has a few bones that need to be reset or something. It's not a task she's looking forward to particularly - good thing she isn't the resident healer.

Looking between the two, the gargress seems to fill in bits and pieces of the story. She's had only the briefest of encounters with Angantyr, and never really had a proper introduction to connect a face to a name. "Ah wonder if it has less te do with ye bein an unlimited, and more te do with power. They came te her, too." Somehow, Zia had managed to fly under the radar, or maybe they just hadn't had time to threaten her as they had Avira. Still, it seemed that their goal was aquiring power, rather than unlimiteds alone.

"Maybe ye should stop callin 'im 'er boyfriend, lad. Yer bound te make the lass a bit uncomfortable." It would be like someone calling Faruja her boyfriend. Sure, he'd written her a love letter, but she'd never read it, and it's now in the hands of a certain half-dragon instead. Even with this bit of advice, she leans in to the nuzzle, sighing as he uses one hand to stroke his neck. "Ye worry us sick ye silly wolf."

Avira's question is a valid one, and she waits for the answer. Just how much danger had they gotten themselves into?
Skoll Ulfang Skoll doesn't know the importance of Unlimited in the slightest. He just knows that he is one, and that this is somehow important. The werewolf shakes his head. "I don't know." Is the best answer he can give her, before laying his two hands over her arms as she gives him a hug, unsure if he should hug her back right now. Things are back to being confusing and... even more dangerous than before.

The beast shakes his head. "But I am fairly sure they can be killed just fine by normal means. Angantyr did." He whispers again. "Assuming he's indeed not like me." The werewolf then looks back to Zia as she lays his hand to his neck. Worry immediately enters his eyes at what Zia says. "Her... they..." The werewolf quickly looks Avira's way. "They came after you?" His expression tells enough. He's a bit hurt she'd not told him. But more-so, he's sad that... they'd indeed haunted her already. "Power..." He mutters...

The werewolf then nods his head. "I'm sorry, I don't mean to place titles that don't belong. That's simply what the fire gaea had called 'im." He explains, then lets out a sigh. "I... want to go home." He whispers. The both probably realize however, he doesn't really 'have a home'. "Somewhere warm and safe." He corrects himself. Basically, the werewolf is asking the two to take him somewhere.
Avira Avira's hands eventually move away to place upon Skoll's arm and pull. "Zia is right, we need to get you home." The poor guy could use a rest afer all he's been through.

At Skoll's question, Avira hesitates. " of them did. I don't know which one it was." Avira finally admits, looking Skoll in the eye. "She said that if I told you about it, she would hurt you. She also said if I told anyone else about it, she'd make you disappear..."

She looks to Zia. "...I wouldn't say Fluorgis is that safe right now. We should head to Traverse Town." Maybe Hati would be along then too. She'll have to give Hati a ring now, come to think of it. Now that she's not in mortal peril and can pick up the phone.
Skoll Ulfang Skoll growls a little, not in anger at Avira, but just at the situation in general. The beast then touches one of his big hands on Avira's on his arm, and gets back up along with the two of them, and begins to move down towards the beach along with the girls. "Traverse Town will work." The werewolf admits, and nods his head. "Thank you... both of you."

This scene contained 64 poses. The players who were present were: Skoll Ulfang, Zia, Avira