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War upon the plains of Sabil
(2013-03-29 - 2013-03-29)
War is to be had when Ramza and some of his troops are spotted too close to Mullonde, and a powerful Shine Knight descends upon him along with both Unexpected as well as Expected allies.
Ramza Beoulve Trees.

That had been Artemis' request, to get away from the desert and find some wooded glade to hole up in for a time. And so when he announced his intent to pass so close to Mullonde, most of the /Braves/ had balked at the idea initially. It still didn't take much all that much in the way of convincing them.

A few days of travel through various villages was all that it took to reach the Alpine mountain range.

They hadn't been particularly careful on their journey to this place, not until they actually arrived. They'd made a false camp in a rather obvious locale and laid an even more fallacious trail to it, while the true camp lay hidden deeper in the forest, so far out of the way that even an army might have passed it by without noticing. There were no cooking fires, there and they attempted to keep the bedlam to a minimum.

Artemis, being the Guardian that she is, initially protested that their leader should scout ahead even though he made the concession to take three others with him. Ramza insisted, she'd been on the verge of collapse for hours given how hard she pushed herself.

It took nearly an hour to reach the trail itself even on Chocobo back, as a warrior woman in traditional samurai garb, and another gaudily dressed lady in Ivalician summoner attire rode alongside the young their leader who was mounted upon Boco. Another man in Dragoon garb ranged nearby, out of sight and unmounted.

As for Ramza himself, he wasn't going to great lengths to hide his appearance, other than wearing a cowled white cloak alongside his typical armored ensemble. He was keeping them on a steady pace, so as not to tire their mounts and to ensure that Theodore could keep up. Their progress was such that they were perhaps halfway through the pass already, and were considering turning back...
Louis LeBlue War... war has changed.

Once, war relied on scouts running back and forth. Once, scouts were clearly marked as such. But these days, there are things far more dangerous than scouts. And that is people with phones. Though the church on the outside seemed slow to get used to the technological advances of other worlds, there are some who have taken great care to make use of the tactical advantage that some of these have given.

As such, imagine the surprise when a woodlander called into the church in order to report something. To report the sighting of a man of most dire reputation amongst those faithful to the Glabados church. Rumors of this man's presence so close to the Mullonde area spread not just to the military though... but also the populace.

This was a while ago, when the group came into the forest to settle. Now, a group rides upon the forest. But between them and that forest lies their true target. The scouting party itself, and the 'precious cargo' it holds.

Dust and pebbles are kicked up as the thrum of many feet hitting the ground ring across the mountains.

There, at the top of a slope not too far from Ramza's position, the dust spreads and settles, revealing a good twelve men on Chocobo. Their leader, a man in full black and red plated armor holding a massive halbert, points straight down at the valley below. Even his own chocobo is black, wearing massive armor upon itself to protect it from strikes. The man raises his halbert.

"Today, my fellow worshippers, is the day a plague is routed from this land!" He speaks loud enough that Ramza would be able to hear this man's boasting. "Today, is the day, that a man you know as Ramza Beoulve shall be /slain/ by the Holy Sword!" The chocobo he rides on seems nervous, as if it lusts for what lies below.

"Kill his men, but leave Ramza to me! I shall have this honor! FOR FAARAAAAAM!"

His men chant along, loud enough for everyone in the valley - and probably the forest beyond - to hear.


Followed by the trampling of chocobo once more, as the group charges down the mountain straight for Ramza's scouting party.
Faruja Senra Being upon the back of a wyvern gives a person a rather detached view of a battlefield. Hovering in the air, above the ridge and barely out of sight of those below, he pets the scales of his great white mount and partner. "Steady, Arista." Murmurs the Templar as one Templar Louis LeBlue gives a rousing speech. Heart fluttering, thinking of the vile poison the young Beoulve would takes all of his discipline to not simply charge as well. Instead, he waves a hand to the trio of Church dragoons below him.

Faruja is sure to let the larger group of warriors get down the ridge first. Then, after a long, aching handful of moments, the Templar signals. Faruja and Arista plunge over the ridge, shining spear at the ready, his fellows leaping down after him as they begin an aerial assault upon the bank ranks of Ramza's forces! Only when their blades and teeth are about to strike does he too yell out.

"For Faram and the Holy Son, may no Heresy lay undiscovered and unpunished!"
Souji Murasame There is a distant rumble of thunder over the battlefield.

It's not really that noticable, until the sun is momentarily occluded with a darkness.

The troops and assembled may look up to see a dark stormcloud above them, in a clear sky.

The cloud then parts to the crack of thunder, as ozone and lightning seethe through the breach in the rending cloud cover.... And then a ship appears. Forged of a black metal with sizzling lightning highlights, the airship holds a sleek, alien appearance. The foredeck supports a series of sails lit in blue fields of energy, catching the ether winds and billowing out as it rolls along the crests of the airways. Long crackling spires seethe with lightning as it arcs between them in Jacob's Ladders.

The ship itself bears an insignia not yet commonly known in the World of Ruin: That of the Murasame Corporation. Along the bow is written the ship's name: AME-NO-TORIFUNE.

Standing at the fore of the ship, a young man stands, looking down upon the imminent confrontation with lidded eyes. One hand holds a wine snifter, which is half full of a dark red vintage. Beside him, a Black Magician in a wide hood stands, eyes burning beneath the brim of his hat.

The boy and the mage look upon the situation without comment.
Evja In the meanwhiles, having escaped the confines of Judge Work for a bit for something of a 'vacation', training chocobos had taken the primary focus of the Vieran Judge. Serendipity had taken a claw hold on him so much that he had really just lost himself in the fun of it. Not to mention Senra was having a blast. Senra, of course... is what Evja had been calling his Chocobo for the longest.

Still had no real name for it.

Streaking along the plains together, Senra was the first to spot the surge of chocobos running in the distance, not to mention a dragon flying above them. "Huh..."

And thus, nosy bunny decided to follow them at a large distance. It was a lot easier following Arista from way way afar than the chocobos after all. Not to mention with all the race training and tasty greens, Senra was making double, and even triple time to try and close the distance as they got closer and closer. Still...

What were they even doing here? It looked like a church Group.


But something began to descend from the clouds and Evja was left staring at the airship. "...I am beginning to think we should not interfere in this ordeal Senra." But would he follow his own advice?
Ramza Beoulve War...has changed. And Ramza hadn't yet adapted to the influx of technological innovations. He was slowly warming up to them, but for now he'd erred, and he didn't even know how he'd erred.

He'd try to figure that out another time, if he survived.

Immediately he motioned for them to turn and spur their Chocobos in the other direction. He'd put up a fist, and motion frantically for Theodore to head in the other direction as quickly as his feet could carry him.

The din of the massive Chocobo cavalry charge behind them was deafening, as the Templars closed in upon them like a pack of crashing wolves. He still had the sense to raise a hand and summon three multi-faceted barriers of crystalline purple, one behind each rider, to ward off any incoming arrows or gunshots.

Over the din, he'd shout a single word at the lady in summoner garb. "SHIVA!"

Regardless of the intensity of the command, she saw fit to argue with him in their retreat. "WHAT GOOD..." Several words were lost in the clamor behind them. "...DO?"

Ramza didn't even look at her, he was remaining relatively calm despite how dire things seeemed, but he still shouted his next command at her urgently. "DO IT!"

The young lady would raise a hand, and a circle of summoning runes, encased in orbs would rise into the air. She'd speak an incantation that would be lost over the tumult as the Templars continued to close in on the trio. "Wind, fade to silence... "

A large cloud of smoke would materialize between the two groups, and a figure of enormous stature would step out. In its eyes would burn the fires of rage. Corded muscles flexed, and an oversized foot stamped down.

A different sort of chaos soon erupted afterwards, as the entire mountain pass started to shake. The anger of the planet made itself manifest as a large crack split down the middle of the mountain pass. Pieces of various sizes, ranging from smothering gravel to crushing boulders fell from the sides of the pass.

The trio of mounted figures that were fleeing weren't immune to this desperate gamble, as they had to stop and steady their mounts in order to prevent themselves from being thrown. While their mounts were well-trained, that only went so far in an Earthquake, and it took all of their efforts to prevent a panic.
Louis LeBlue As dark clouds and lightning settles, and that massive ship arrives above, some of Louis' group stall in order to look up and stare at the group. Louis only needs a quick glance to shout; "Do not slow down! I will kill you personally if you dally! You hear me!?" The heavy armored man's cruel voice roars over the battlefield. The group continues to chase Ramza, and starts to slowly overtake the group.

But that's when Ramza's summoner calls forth the power of an earthquake. The Templars have no such magical soldiers in their midsts for this ride, so they suffer a dire lack of protection against this. Yet, the riders continue to ride as the massive summon appears out of the Ether. "Keep running! Hold onto your reins!" One of the subordinates calls out and ducks his down down against the Chocobo they ride.

Louis doesn't duck. He uses his legs to lock himself against his chocobo, while wielding the massive halberd - spinning it around like a whirlwind to cast aside the dust and protect his Chocobo as they cut through the smoke. Yet, even Louis and his chocobo are forced to pause when the earth splits down the mountain pass! One of his templar allies lets out a Wilhelm scream as he falls into the cracks, whilst ofthers slow in order to move away from the crack.


Two of the riders at the back use Louis' attempt at casting away the sands to fire at Ramza's men, specifically the summoner, in an attempt to floor their Chocobo. The group continues to split once more as the boulders come down, slowing due to the continued earthquake.

"DO NOT FALTER MEN!" Louis roars out above the enormous noise of falling rock, and continues ahead... then pulls back his halberd and glowers at Ramza... and THROWS IT with all his might!

The massive halbert ends up landing right in the way of his escape, splitting the earth partially and generally just halting his progression.

Louis is quick approaching - leaving much of his troop behind which is having trouble getting through the split earth area.
Souji Murasame Now /that/ gets some attention.

Souji looks down upon the appearance of Titan with eyes widening in surprise. A hand clenches on the snifter... though not so much that it is damaged. As the rocks fall, his eyes flick from the Templar to the fleeing Heretics.

A decision is made quickly. "Take us down. We're intervening."

The Black Mage speaks. "On which side, Murasame?"

"The Church, of course. I'm not an /idiot/, Gerrison." Souji sighs. "I'm going to change suits in the meantime. I am going to need to look... generous."

The Ame-no-Torifune begins banking, descending to hang over the pass. Rope ladders are thrown down, as well as several floating rafts descend on blue lights, offering the trapped Templars a way out of the rocky gridlock. "Quickly!" Souji calls down. "Board and we will usher you forward to help cut off the Heretics' escape!"

His suit is a slightly different cut and a lighter shade of blue, for those who are watching. Potions are provided for the troops that board to help reinvigorate them for the oncoming battle.
Faruja Senra The power of the legendary Summoners gives the Templar pause as he swoops down, just about ready to cleave into the rear of Ramza's forces with his companions. As the earth shakes, the rat gives out one desperate yell to his comrades.

"UP!" And up they go, the dragoons leaping into the sky, narrowly avoiding being dragged into the newly created cracks in the valley. Arista rapidly pumps her wings, raising Burmecian and wyvern alike above the earthquake caused by the summoner!

What goes up, must come down however. "Slay the damned Summoner!" Orders Faruja, before Arista catches a wave of air. Rising higher, the pair lead by example, once more swooping down upon Ramza's forces in an attempt to spear the woman while the rest guard the now blocked retreat with threatening spears as they land.

Casting his gaze breifly to the descending ship, the rat smiles. Surely victory is within their grasp this day!
Evja 'Kill the heretics'

That had echoed throughout the mountainside with how loud it was shouted, how loud it was chorused amongst the people there. The airship, the fleeing people, Evja let out a small growl. Damnit... this was another slaughter waiting to happen. And if that was indeed Faruja on that dragon like he thought, then... it may be him leading it.

"Run, Senra!" And with a kick he spurred the Chocobo into running as hard and fast as it could; A yellow streak began making its' way up the side of the mountain towards where the encounter and battle was going on, rider laying low while it did, waiting and watching. Getting close enough before suddenly a summon and earthquake, "Damn, leap!" And so, skills practiced from all the training that's been going on lately, Senra begins carefully hopping back and forth before jumping straight up as Evja summons a spear and throws it as hard as he can, launching it between Ramza's group and those going after them.

Ramza Beoulve While they were off-balance, they certainly weren't defeated, and that wouldn't hinder them long enough for Ramza's liking.

He'd turn his head briefly to assess exactly what he had working against him. Air support, a figure on a Wyvern that was likely Faruja given his reputation, and a frothing mad Templar that just cut off their escape.

This was bad. He had limited time to work with in order to give them another route of egress, and even more limited resources to work with.

Turning to the woman in summoner garb, he'd smile reassuringly to her. His voice remained steady, entirely calm. "Adela, you have training in black magic. Work at filling the gap, I'll cover you."

What may have suprised most individuals about the youngest Beoulve, was that he never let his pride or ego work into his decisions. All of his commands worked towards a singular purpose..

Making sure that he didn't have to bury /any/ of his friends. Unlike most individuals with military backgrounds, he didn't consider any sacrifices necessary ones.

He'd spur his mount into turning, and Alicia would do the same, while he serenely assessed the Templar. His gaze weighing, measuring, and making certain assumptions and inferences based recently acquired knowledge. "You're Louis LeBlue, I take it? I suppose I should be congratulating you, sending an army to capture a small scouting party of four. I might even be commending you on your strategy if not for a small quirk of mine."

He'd unsheath his Cinqueda, /Grass/, keeping it at a low guard. "...I'm loathe to compliment anyone guilty of patricide. I believe I'll be venging your Lord Father another day, if it pleases you."

The young man would glare up at the mounted Burmecian on a Wyvern. "Ser Senra, stay out of this! I don't want to hurt you, but I won't allow you to execute any of my friends!"

As Faruja dove at Adela, the woman would shriek and quickly dismount off her Chocobo, stumbling off halfway and hitting the ground hard. She'd get up, and stagger towards the gap, trying to work out how to allow for their escape.

A man who until this point had been out of sight, would jump impossibly high, tossing an array of Kunai at Faruja and his wyvern, before closing in with a spear to try and skewer his flying mount. The lady in Samurai garb would ride forward, beginning to engage Louis in a suprisingly defensive manner by unsheathing a Katana, and merely trying to keep him at bay. Apparently the Company knew all too well about his famed skill. For Ramza's part, he would coax the winds into action against both Faruja and Louis, allowing them to pick up, and buffet the pair with a simple Geomancer's trick. Lashing out, it would find its way into the gaps in their armor, scathing them as if it were a whip of air.

The young man would then raise a hand, speaking an incantation. "Strike the ground with Glittering Blades!"

Alicia would pull her mount back when she heard the incantation, and the Dragoon would abruptly leap off of Faruja's mount. They would feel the supercharged air, the static causing Faruja's hair to fuzz and stand on end, moments before a bolt of lightning would manifest and arc through both him and Louis.

While he certainly appreciated Evja's interference, he wasn't so sure what exactly the Judge planned to do.
Artemis Eurus "Are you <GOOSEHONK>ing suicidal Ramza?" Artemis says, suddenly there, slipping out from between the trees as if her presence here was totally natural and explainable. She stands nearby his chocobo and draws her sword. "You have to be the most--" she begins, then looks upward.


Artemis freezes. She hasn't seen him in two years. He will know her immediately, mask or not.

"Keep retreating..." she says, pointing her sword upward toward Louis.
Ramza Beoulve Ramza would gesture frantically towards the gap. Adela was starting to experiment with ice magic to try and create some sort of temporary bridge so they could escape, but it didn't seem to be working so well thus far.

He'd look sidelong at Artemis. His voice wasn't panicked, but he certainly didn't seem entirely composed. "SUICIDAL?! No! We must away! And you'll be coming with us when we do!"
Louis LeBlue The troops are hesitant at first when the strange flightcrafts come from the skies. Airships have long since been a lost art in their world of Ivalice. And though they've come to /know/ about airships, floatation devices like thisare still enormously strange to them. Yet, they lack no bravery! As such, they move onto the floating rafts, but refuse the potions given to them. They're templars, they know better than to accept strange tinctures. After all, they might be poison - they might be made to owe something more than they already do now. They await their return to the battlefield, their Chocobos nervous, and their blades ready to strike if the assisting airship's workers turn out enemies.

Meanwhile, before Louis, tactics are worked. The young Beoulve tries to keep his entire group alive whilst Louis is more than content with using his entire group as stepping stones if he must. There were more believers where they come from! The man continues to storm forwards, unsheathing the sword at his hip and dives lower against his Chocobo. Then... the whistling of something falling. Louis instinctively veers his chocobo to the side and evades the large lance that fell from the sky, and even tries to grab it to use as a weapon! But it disappears just as he takes it.

Strange magic is at work here.

He can't halt however!

"Anything to root out the Heretic plague!" Louis responds to Ramza, but is suddenly brought to a halt when Ramza speaks of patricide. The chocobo stops abruptly, and turns to a side, with Louis turning to face Ramza. His expression is angered and... conflicted. How could this man /possibly/ know of that! It had been covered up to the full extent of the church's doing. "I have no knowledge of what you speak of." Louis answers him.

This moment of halting is dangerous however. The man dips his head low when the gales of wind suddenly strike him, piercing through his armor. His expression turns into one of severe pain for a moment, before he manages to look up once more as a voice reaches him.

"Claudia..." He whispers softly, his expression changing to something of... caring. His gaze slowly travels up and down her robed form. She's changed. She's become stronger. He can tell. It almost looks like a smirk might overcome him, before it turns into a wicked anger!

"You DARE stand in my way!? You allied yourself with these... /HERETICS/!?" Louis points his blade forwards, then leans in before striding forwards and running around Ramza to grab his halberd once more and then storms straight for both Ramza and Artemis, keeping his Halberd level with his shoulders and seeks to strike Ramza off of his Chocobo steed, and then flash it down towards Artemis' chest!
Faruja Senra Faruja narrowly misses his plunge as the Summoner scrambles away, the Burmecian's mount flapping her wings as she attempts to wheel about for another pass. A flying spear neatly distracts the pair, as none other than the Judge Errant of Fluorgis makes herself known!

"Lady Adjudicator, if you've any sense at all, LEAVE! 'Tis naught thy battle! These people are guilty of crimes most foul. 'Tis war itself that they would wage upon us, and we shan't do any less ourselves!"

SUDDENLY NINJA! Kunai rain down upon the pair of rat and wyvern, Faruja hunkering down defensively as they pierce into his armor, drawing pained squeaks. Most of the kunai fall harmlessly off of Arista's hard scales, but theodore's spear proves a greater threat! As it comes down, the rat shifts, catching the ninja dragoon's blade in the thigh.

Throwing the man off, winds and then magical lightning crash into the pair of holy dragoon and wyvern, Faruja leaping off his mount. Blinking amidst the winds buffeting him, Ramza's glare is returned. "And leave my fellow Templar to rot? I should rightly be insulted, Beoulve!"

The exchange between Louis that Lady Eurus from the bar!?...has only part of his attention. Quick to rally his troops, the three other dragoons press forward with their spears upon Alicia and the Summoner, even as Faruja focuses his attention on Theodore. An incatation, and a moment later, a falling crescent seeks out his fellow dragoon's armor!
Souji Murasame Souji is pleased to see the Templar making use of his offer. Though the refusal of potions are expected. Oh well. One less thing he can hold the Templar to account for.

Evja, however, shatters his buzz. He glances over, a scowl crossing his face. A flicker of images appear across the lenses of his glasses for a moment, before he shakes his head. "Don't be a fool." He says to the Judge. "You can't just jump into the middle of a war and demand peace. Get out or get run over." He turns, yelling orders to move the ship forward.

With a crack of thunder, the Ame-no-Torifune begins flying forward, attempting to cut off the swift escape of the Heretics by simply flying over the terrain. Ramza and the others have one advantage, however: It will take time to unload the troops. If he's fast enough...

And then lightning crashes down into the forest, striking down in coruscating bolts. IT appears to be random, more used to keep hostile troops present away from the ship as it unloads, as opposed to actually aiming at something. Ship-based weapons rarely fare well against infantry. "This is working out well so far." Souji says to himself, considering how the battle unfolds.
Artemis Eurus "Of course I'm bloody coming with you, I will follow. Go," she growls to Ramza.

Artemis is on foot. She does not really like to ride, unlike Louis, who has always been excellent in mounted combat. The warrior's eyes flash as Louis' halberd is brought low toward her chest. Impossibly swift, Artemis turns effortlessly into a spinning inside crescent kick, the instep of her foot connecting hard with the pole of the halberd to try to send it sailing wide before she drops down with her katana and slices at the legs of the chocobo, trying to bring Louis to the ground.

She would place herself in front of Ramza then, sword in one hand as she throws out the other as if trying to push Louis away from them--which is exactly what she is doing. The air ripples, a telekinetic blast slamming into Louis to try to throw him backward and give more space between himself and Ramza. "I'd ally with Chaos itself if it let me deal with you," Artemis replies to Louis, falling into a defensive stance with her blade, as they had done so many times in the past in mock battle. Her heart is a lead weight in her chest.
Evja "I will not!"

It's a simple enough statement, "There shall be no blood spilt here today unless you continue to force others hands, Templars, Faruja! This is not war, it is a hunt, and I will not allow it to happen!" Not that the Judge even remotely has /jurisdiction/, but hey, law of Power and all.

Louis went to grab his spear and Evja made a quick jerking motion with his hand, polearm vanishing from where it landed and quickly coming back to his hand. "But so be it." Senra the Chocobo landed and cut a rug straight towards Ramza's group only to dodge a bolt of lightning, Evja turning to glare up at the source of it before hopping off and shooing his chocobo away, "Go, stay safe. If any tries to attack you return to me and I shall take care of it." The large chocobo looks towards the Viera in cloak a moment before nodding and running off.

"If you will not stop this slaughter on your own, then you shall have one more to try and cut through!" As she speaks Evja spreads her arms out, two large spears appearing in them, "But be it known I am not going to let an execution happen in this fashion." Tossing another 'warning' spear towards Faruja, not meant to hit him, instead Evja heads towards the remainder of those mounted Knights and begins to try and cut them down off their mounts. Of note he's not aiming for lethal blows, nor is he aiming at the mounts. In fact, Evja was quite literally attempting to simply dismount them and startle the Chocobos bad enough to make them run.
Ramza Beoulve Theodore would leap up to counter Faruja with another rain of Kunai, getting caught in the fallen crescent. It might have impressed Faruja that regardless of this treatment, the man would not falter in his leap. Instead he'd aim his spear at Arista's eye, perhaps to give master and mount a matching set, before leaping off and raining Kunai down upon the advancing figure of Louis. With irritation, the young heretic would give Faruja a sharp glare. "Your fellow Templar, Ser Senra? There is naught about this man that makes him your comrade! Place a man guilty of patricide in gilded armor and he is still naught but a butcher!"

As Louis advanced, Ramza would leap off Boco preemptively, using his Cinqueda to try and throw the man's Halberd out wide, before he would use his offhand to repeatedly pound Louis with lightning fast punches. Despite the man being armored, he would definitely feel each Chi enhanced blow. He'd growl at the man. "And just what about the /heretic plague/ frightens you so? Is it the fear that I'm right? But mayhaps you already know that your leadership is naught but a pack of Lucavi possessed fiends! Is it any wonder that your virtuous sister fights alongside me?"

For whatever reason he had the urge to shout: /Fists of Fury, fight for Justice!/ But he didn't because, that'd just be silly, wouldn't it?

At the last moment, anticipating a brutal counterattack per what Artemis taught him, he'd retreat back a few steps, and extract two blue orbs from a pouch at his side. Tossing one at Louis, and another into the air at Faruja, if they struck true, it would burst, superchilling the air around them and coating the Wyvern and Louis' armor with rime.

He'd give Evja a grateful look. Perhaps their situation wasn't so desperate after all, but he was still overwhelmingly in favor of continuing their flight. Five could not deal with an army led by two Templars.

Adela would continue trying to fill the gap with ice spells, nervously looking in the air at Faruja all the while.
Louis LeBlue Louis proceeds to hold back Ramza's additional infantry by use of the range of his Halberd. The way they are behaving, remaining at a distance, suggests that Artemis has told them enough about his combat style. "Staying your distance will not save you from my wrath!" He warns before turning his attention once more back onto Artemis, noticing the very technique she is using and quickly plunges his sword into the ground besides his Chocobo's leg, guarding it from the slash and instead causing it to ring off of his armored boot.

His Halberd forced wide by Ramza, further punches are delivered close to his side, rattling his armor! Had it just been Ramza and his army... but now, now there's more than that! Claudia! Why was she here!? Why did she have to be here!?

In the meantime, with Souji's help, the Templars are being offloaded at a position where they might be very well able to cut off Ramza's retreat. When they finally are all down, there's the loud roar. "TO VICTORY" They all chant. "FOR FARAM!" Before charging at the back of Ramza's lines. Louis continues to tower over his sister and Ramza.

"Then you are a fool, sister. To ally yourself with evil. This is not what father would have wanted for you." He rears his halberd up, but in that moment Artemis strikes. And there is weakness in his moments right now. Though it is subtle, he is in fact shaked by the appearance of his sister. The massive telekinetic strike blasts up against Louis, and he and his chocobo are both forced back a few steps - blown in the air in fact. It's but a very short airtime however, before the chocobo lands cleanly on the ground once more.

Louis then finally, stands up. He stands up onto the saddle of his Chocobo, towering even further, and whirlwinds the massive halberd above his head.

He ends this by pointing it at Ramza. "Stop speaking lies." He must destroy this man and his own sister... they must not spread his inforgivable deed! There comes Ramza's chilling strike, and the ice splashes over his armor. For a moment, Louis is entirely frozen in ice. His eyes however, stare straight at Ramza with the anger of a thousand gods!

Meanwhile, elsewhere, Evja attempts to dismount Louis' troops. The man suddenly quakes with anger. And while his troops do manage to mostly remain out of the way of the Viera's strikes, at least one is forced off of their 'steed'. With a loud roar, Louis breaks out of his icy prison. He grabs a spare spear his chocobo carries, and throws it straight for Evja's position with the intent of piercing 'her' from afar.

The man then gazes back down upon Artemis and Ramza. "What is this? Magic!? Fight like a real warrior! You coward!" Still standing on his chocobo for a moment, he spins up his weapon once more, before he suddenly jumps up into the air, and comes crashing down with the massive halbert aimed for both Ramza and his chocobo alike. Landing - be it on the chocobo or on the ground, he then whirls it around, picking up a huge gust of wind by sheer brute force, and then sends this massive kinetic force straight through Ramza's army and Artemis in extension of this, before stabbing in rapid succession at his sister, in an attempt of trapping her within a tunnel of spears!
Faruja Senra Kunai rain down, peppering the Templar with tiny blades. He's starting to look like some kind of fuzzy pincushion beneath it all! At the last moment, Arista pulls back her head, that spear sliding along her jawline and scratching bone. Even as she bleeds, she roars out her anger at the group of Heretics, looking particularly upon the leaping dragoon as though he's a meal in the making. She even licks her lips!

Still, the sight of Theodore's uninterrupted leap is one to behold. Clearly Ramza has found himself with powerful allies! "...Patricide?"

A glance to Louis, briefly. What was going on here? The Templar shakes it off, squeaking in pain as the kunai burst across his form, and Louis' denial to Ramza only steadies his resolve. "Fah! Seek not to sink thy fangs into my neck, Heretic! Thy poison shall find no purchase within my veins!"

Rime certainly slows down the rat a touch, and weakens his armor besides! As Louis and the others are being rather well slammed, the Templar focuses his efforts on them! Curative magics rain down upon his comrades as he keeps a steady eye upon the battlefield. Good thing, too, as there's a warning spear chucked his way! Duck! "You know naught the course you take, Evja! Thy foolish, bloodless ideals shall be the death of you!"
Sarafina Carenze Nearby, a small airship approaches. Sarafina still is a mercenary and still needs to earn the family keep and feed her men. She is Faruja's friend, of course, however...

"Captain!!" Gangway the Hummingway shouts, peering through a spyglass, "The Church is on the hunt here, we better steer clear lest some of their overzealous members make decisions from your appearance!"

Sarafina snorts. "They're no church of mine. What is the situation?"

"Seems like the Heretics are holding their own for the moment...but that airship is cutting off their escape route, they'll fall before numbers and strategy at this rate..." Gangway murmurs. "But you can see that as well as day. Neither're likely to pay much..."

Sarafina grins. "A ship cutting them off, you say..." Gangway starts stammering protests, but Sarafina will have none of it. "Full speed ahead, fire the cannons! We're moving in on that airship!! Some favors are worth more than gold. Do good by the Church and they'll give you a blessing, do good by those with nothing and they give you their souls! Lets at it!"

It flits into the field as if from nowhere, unleashing several quick cannon bursts for the Ame-no-Torifune! Sarafina doesn't jump off deck /yet/.
Louis LeBlue "To answer your former question. It is just such things that makes you a danger. You spit lies. You do not 'believe' in Faram. You are nothing but a reliousless heretic! And as such, you have no Morals. You are nothing but a dog who will bite the hand that feeds him. And as such, you must be put down." He doesn't speak of the Lucavi possession - but unlike many of the churchmen around... he is aware of the plot.
Artemis Eurus Artemis too is shaken by the unexpected presence of her brother. Allign herself with evil? That's laughable. Ramza isn't evil. Ramza isn't even bad. Ramza is vaguely naughty at best! Oh, but her words...does she mean them?

Artemis roars, bringing her blade up to try to guard herself from the spears that fall all around her, nocking a great number away from her, though several pierce her armor and draw blood from her skin. "How dare you speak of our father! YOU KILLED HIM!" she screams, slicing through the spears, disappearing--a fraction of a second later the air ripples again as she seems to short-range teleport-charge Louis, her eyes wild with too many emotions to name, their conflagration measuring first and foremost as rage!

"You! The legend! The hero! Tch! Behind the curtain you are nothing but a monster, vicious and cruel and I will see you ended or die trying!"

Chocobo or not, Artemis leaps upward, spinning in a whirlwind of her blade, glowing red with blood and fire, cutting and slicing in a graceful dance of death.
Evja "Foolish, bloodless ideals you say... a pity. I had thought better of you Faruja." came a soft mumble before Evja vanished from sight, simply gone from the battlefield, spear that was aimed towards the Viera piercing the ground where they were. Then with a series of three jumps straight up through the air paired with flickering in and out of sight Evja was staring right at Faruja.

"I will not let you hunt people as if they are quail, for your church or anything else. My regards to your doting wolf." Was Arista fast enough to respond? Or Faruja for that matter? Because if Evja so much as was able to touch the dragon with his foot he would vanish again and reappear behind Faruja before grabbing him and quite literally attempting to flick him right off the back of his mount and straight for the ground far below.

Of course, he wasn't meant to be alone! Evja planned to leap right after him, making sure that whatever happened, it would hurt like hell - even if not kill. Indeed, not bloodless, but no executions indeed!
Ramza Beoulve The man's strike would blast Ramza's ranks, scathing them terribly. For his part, Ramza would shore up his magical barriers. The moment they were struck, the translucent multifaceted crystalline barriers would appear and become opaque purple, before shattering outright, pushing him back. Luckily it would blunt the force of his blow against Adela, who nearly staggered into the chasm Louis had created. Theodore wasn't so lucky, as he was knocked out of the air, landing onto the ground. He didn't make a sound, he merely got back up, glaring daggers at Louis. Alicia's mount was slain outright by the onslaught, but she managed to escape mostly unscathed. "Is your forked tongue done flitting? Don't even think of bringing Holy Faram into it! His very name is profaned every time you speak it!"

It might have been shocking to both Faruja and Louis, but apparently he actually is a /believer/ in the divine entity of Faram. After all, was not heresy at its core simply a dissenting point of view?

He'd grit his teeth before speaking sharply at Faruja. "Venom? You know naught of viper that you lay with! Can't you feel its venom burning within you as you speak? You'll know soon enough, I pray only that it is not too late. It is as I said, Ser Senra. I do /not/ want to hurt you."

Ramza would raise a fist, and as one all of the /Braves/ save Adela would gather in close to him. Opening his fist so that his palm was showing, he'd speak an incantation. "Life's refreshing breeze, blow with energy!"

A divine wind would pick up, and blow across the battered heretics, healing them. He'd simultaneously open the Chakra point closest to each of their hearts, increasing their body's natural healing capabilities to their ultimate extent. Finally, he'd speak another incantation as a new crystalline barrier of opaque purple would form around each of them, including Artemis. It would immediately fade into translucence.
Souji Murasame Souji salutes the soldiers of Faram with his sheathed blade as they begin their charge from the flank. Should this prove successful...

Thoughts of potential victory suddenly explode as cannon shells smash into the side of the Ame-no-Torifune. There is a crackle and explosion of light as the weaponsfire caves in the black steel sides of the ship.

Souji turns around, eyes narrowing. "These idiots had better not make me go get my murder suit."

The Black Mage beside Souji chuckles deeply, and then he gestures. A fireball streaks through the air, blasting for the airship as surging lightning bolts begin shearing through the air towards Sarafina. The Ame-no-Torifune lifts off higher, trying to get the height advantage on the enemy ship. Meanehile Souji walks up to the prow of the ship and puts a foor on it, a hand casually resting upon the hilt of his ancestral blade. "None set foot upon the Ship of the Heavens without my leave." Souji says, though his opposition is far too distant to hear it, presumably. Air surges around him. "This will not go unpunished."
Louis LeBlue "Our father was a fool! A fool for trusting you! You are right - I am a Legend. A Hero! And you... you carried nothing but jealousy towards me. That's why /you/ killed our father! And now you dare pin it one me!?" Louis roars in anger. He's a great actor. Or perhaps... it's just how his twisted mind has formulated things. He's repeated that lie so many times that it's became a truth within his mind. And the demon within only makes that so much easier.

"I see you now for who you truly are sister... I'd hoped it was not so. But to see this... you are the very poison that the priests have warned me about so many times. The lost lamb... it is as Faruja says. Your venom shall not penetrate my skin!" The man draws another blade from the side of his Chocobo's bags and brings it to bare on Artemis, parrying many of the strikes even as he walks towards her. It becomes a mighty display of metal on metal, sparks flying as the brute uses his enormous power and skill on Artemis. Here and there, she manages to slice through his defenses, but just as she does - so does he. He cuts for her shoulder, intending to rend her flesh and make her bleed.

And then Ramza goes ahead and uses another healing spell - just as that of Faruja's also falls over his troops.

"I have no need of such magic!" Louis shouts out.

"All I need... is THIS BLADE!" He holds up his halberd once more, and stabs it into the ground. And the sheer might of his plunging attack is enough to send a shockwave of energy out across the close-range battlefield, trembling the earth - and in that moment of difficult balance, he rears the weapon around in an attempt of catching Ramza and his troops at the sides of their bodies, and slam them into Artemis! His gaze never moves from the figure of Artemis however.

He's not truly attacking her directly at this point.
Faruja Senra "The world is not so easy, Evja! At times one must play the hunter indeed, when one's enemy is so vile and dangerous! Better to spill blood to save others from poisonous lies, and doers of anarchy, than to keep one's hands clean." Whereupon, the rat proves too slow! Grabbed from behind by the Viera, he's chucked bodily to the ground, landing in a heap. From the horrific crack and scream, he's definitely broken a few bones from the landing. Coughing, he glares over at Ramza.

"Faith my shield, such a tongue of silver is /useless/! My ears are deaf to thy words, Beoulve!"

Slowly standing, the ratling lets Louis handle Ramza as he turns his own attention back to a certain Summoner and Judge! "I shall find no joy in harming you, Evja, but it seems I must beat sense into thy skull." Thrust! Faruja's holy spear lashes out with a lightning sword upon Adele, before leaping up despite his protesting ribs. Aiming a hard kick, and the butt of his spear at the Judge's chest, he quite simply tries to ring her noggin with spear, foot, and hopefully her own helm.
Sarafina Carenze "Captain, that's Ser Beoulve!" Gangway laments. "We could turn him in and be set for months!"
"Aye, if they honored any such deal. I may be a monarchist but--" The discussion is interrupted by magic. Lightning and fire crash into the ship, and while the former smashes apart blanks of wood and even vaporizes one of Sarafina's mercs, the fire is the more serious issue--the ship's wood is treated to resist such things but its still wood.

"Carter!" Sarafina shouts. "Wallace! Put out those fires!" She hisses under her breath, seizing hold of the wheel to spin it up, narrowly avoiding a fireball headed for one of the propellers. "Magic! On an airship! No...something is strange. The way that cannonfire hit his ship..." She frowns. "It is no normal airship... Could it be...?"

Carter and Wallace, two musclemen from Fabul, wearing jetpacks of their own flit into the air, spraying down enflamed portions of the Red Chocobo with SCIENCE. Or more accurately flame suppressing foam. Gangway starts shouting hysterically at Sarafina.

"Use the new recruits!" He shouts.

"Never--" Sarafina begins.

"You can't keep distrusting magic, Captain! Our crew's lives are in your hands!"

Sarafina quietly nods once. "Bring them up, target their black mages..." Sarafina murmurs. "We'll have to grab archers for our next outing but I have an idea for now! Lets get to it!"

Two young women clamber up on top deck and chant some spells of their own. The white mage casts a REFLECT spell on the black mage, who starts calling down the thunder, aiming for the other ship's own mages.

The other ship is getting a height advantage, Sarafina tries her best to match it but Souji is gaining ground. The cannons unleash another barrage as Sarafina draws her chainsaw.

"Who said about setting foot on your ship...?" She murmurs as she considers a plan.
Evja At this point, Evja doesn't even attempt to dodge it. Instead she simply brings out her sword, one Faruja is all too familiar with, to slice right through him! A good thing that sword doesn't really hurt folks...

"Words mean nothing and I shant let you make an ass of yourself if I can help it! Hati cares for you, so do not cause her to worry by going out to do things like hunt down people you could otherwise bring in! I heard your men shout to kill them all! This was no lawful detainment, it was a hunt, and you shall not succeed!"

Sword dropped and vanished, Evja once again pulls out a couple of spears while simply pressing straight through the damage, armor beneath her cloak(no helm) taking the brunt of it as she swirls around to trip Faruja before trying to, quite literally, peg him right in the manbits. Fighting dirty has no bearing on fighting honest - no killing, just disabling however she can!
Artemis Eurus Artemis can barely think of what to say. Does Louis believe what he says? An actor, he never was...Louis was a skilled warrior, but he was not cunning. Not in anything but war.

"You're /must/ be mad. I have the scar to prove your aggression! You killed him! Then you came for me!" she screams, trying to defend against his onslaught. Louis had always been strong...would she ever be able to best him? It didn't matter, did it? It would not be decided today. The time was not right. She could not fall yet.

Artemis feels Ramza's healing energy wash over her. "Thank you, Ramza," she says, then takes a deep breath and holds her sword upward with the blade downward across her body, her feet firmly planted to withstand Louis' blast.

And as she is still alive, she flicks her sword toward him in a quick counter slice, then leaps toward a tree, her feet connecting with the bark to run upward, springing off of it to get the higher ground and come down upon Louis with her katana in a wicked downward chop. "You betrayed me. You betrayed everything I ever cared about!" she shouts, the air around her vibrating with the force of her rage and the strike of her sword.
Ramza Beoulve "You have no idea how much it grieves me to hear that, Ser Senra." And indeed, Ramza's voice seemed steeped in regret. For her part, Adela would shriek, and dive to the side, just missing Faruja's blow. The hardened ice bridge was nearly complete, but she wasn't sure she wanted to test it quite yet. As she got up, she harumphed, and picked up a rock, skipping it right towards Faruja's sole uncovered eye.

He'd turn to Louis, taking up a stance that all in the /Braves/ save Artemis would know too well. His Cinqueda was used to slash the peaceknot on his Saya, and he sheathed the first blade, putting his hand upon the Katana's hilt. He'd speak a single word. "Theodore, now."

The Dragoon would leap high into the air, dropping a smoke bomb which immediately billowed, obscuring the battlefield. As one, Theodore and Ramza would advance on Louis. Theodore would stab his spear into a gap from his armor from behind, then immediately grab Artemis and motion for her to get down. As the pair dropped to the floor, Ramza would draw the blade out a fraction, uncovering only a small length of naked steel. Ramza would close his eyes, focusing on his training, and coaxing the spirit within the sword to life. "Flame-Devouring sword, consume all iniquity!"

And then in a flash, the katana was drawn, but it was not slashed towards Louis, instead it was held upward. It immediately would burst into eerie blue-flame. The young man hated this part, it always felt like half a war crime to unleash it on the living, but he felt he had no choice. "CHIRIJIRADEN!"

From its elevated position, blue flame would erupt, akin to an explosion, billowing out towards Louis. Anything the flames touched, would burn, and continue to burn in nigh-unquenchable flame.

And then in a final gesture, almost as a mockery of everything that Faruja, and Louis accused him of, he would take a leap backwards, sheathing the Katana, and clasping his hands together. The air would grow still, the smoke would dissipate almost instantly, though the fires would keep burning. A brilliant white light appeared over both Faruja and Louis' heads. "Bright light...."

Sparkling orbs of brilliance would descend upon Louis. Faruja would feel the same /energy/ that he calls upon. "....shine down on bloody impurity."

At first it seemed benign, for as the orbs touched him, Louis would feel nothing initially. And then all of a sudden, at his feet, divine wrath would gather, and surge upwards through him, as heavenly bolts soared skyward.
Louis LeBlue "Me, Mad!? Where have you been all of these years, Claudia!?" Louis asks her. "Of course you carry a scar! You think your father wouldn't put up a fight against you!?" It's almost disgusting in the way the man spews these untruths so. "That's why you wear a mask now, isn't it? To hide your shame? To hide the liar beneath it! You thought I would not recognize you like that?" Though deep within, the man can't help but admit that the girl had good taste in her getup. It looked... It looked /noble/.

Then Faruja finally falls. And a group of the Templars immediately move upon the Burmecian in order the cover him in case he needed it. The man moves on his sister, raging, trying to catch her with his spear. But the woman manages to come down upon him, moving past his defenses. She plunges her Katana down upon his shoulder, shattering the armor and sending a spray of blood up into the air. Louis /glowers/ at her, and tries to /grab/ her. To stop her from being able to flee as Ramza calls forth his magical blade!

But the moment he grabs her, he moves and draws her underneath his cloak and protects her as the brilliant white light comes down to burn him. The man shouts in pain, wisps of darkness flaring off of him as the demon within suffers direly underneath the holy wrath of Ramza's attack. The man continues to bleed, but he refuses to fall over. He refuses to stop that which he does best.


And when the brilliant light finally retreats, for a moment, he looks upon Artemis with kind eyes... before he violently tries to throw away the woman like some ragdoll. "You DARE!?" The man rears his halberd back. And then suddenly, with one violent thrust, he /throws/ his halberd. He throws it at such an angle that it is sent to Impale both Ramza and Evja - to cut through the both! To leave a hole or massive scar in their bodies, before the man runs straight for Ramza with his blade, heaving it tall over his head with both hands, and attempts to cut him down right where he stands!

A massive wave of kinetic force follows in the wake of the strike, enough to scar the lands behind and beneath Ramza.
Faruja Senra The mention of his lover gives the Templar pause, even as that sword swings through him. "You underestimate the power of words, Evja. Today alone proves their treachery." Then, a rock comes flying at him! Whap! Right in the eye. Crying out, he stumbles along, blinded!

Trip! Faruja is already quite winded from the fight, and can hardly see! Evja's strike hits home, a rather girlish shriek exiting the Templar's muzzle. Despite the armor on him, he crumples, black eye bugging out as he cradles himself.

Then, from above, light descends upon his allies, as though to mock all that he stands for! The glare he gives Ramza is withering, before the rat finally loses consciousness thanks to the beating by the Judge! Luckily, some of Louis' cohorts come to protect the fallen Burmecian, Arista hovering near and generally chomping at anyone who gets /too/ close to the rat.
Evja "Be safe, Faruja. And for the love of your god, quit being a du..." Suddenly Louis shouted something and Evja's attention was torn. "ARISTA! TAKE FARUJA AND FLEE! DO NOT LET HIM GET HURT!" 'she' shouted towards the wyvern she'd ridden on before only to turn and vanish from sight. But not before curling up and blocking the spear, even as it knocked away and left the Vieran Judge staggering. "No!"

Then once vanished, Evja reappeared with her back towards Ramza, large cloak fluttering before she was knocked physically backwards by the rebounded halberd. So much so that she winds up skidding to an eventual stop and possibly hitting against Ramza in the process, though she never fell over.

That was when it came to her attention that it wasn't simply the halberd that she had intercepted, but the sword as well! Leaning forward and throwing the halberd to the ground, Evja brings a spear up and attempts to block it before the sword smashes straight through and tears a large rend through her armor, leaving her to cry out in pain. However... she stands upright and upon such declares, "I am Judge Magister Errant Evja of Jylland! You shall not have your prey today and if you do not want me to destroy you all here, and now, I suggest you leave and tend to your wounded! THIS IS A WARNING, NOT A THREAT!"

For shortly, the Viera began to glow, and glow bright, a golden 'holy' light surrounding her and slowly the area begins to darken, as if all the light was being pulled in. She was preparing, for /something/... but what?
Souji Murasame The cheating bastards, Souji thinks as he sees the bright light of a Reflection spell being cast. "GERRISON! GET DOWN!" Souji yells, moments before a scorching blast of lightning sears across the deck, unable to be repelled due to it being bounced off of a reflect spell first, creating a harmonic that pierces other reflection spells.

Souji paid attention in class, you see. However, that's all of little worth at the moment as he is already leaping into the way of his advisor, the lightning striking him clear in the chest. He falls, eyes rolling up as the Ramuha scion crumples to the ground, twitching.

Gerrison, spared the powerful lighting bolt, crouches next to Souji. "Murasame. Murasame, get up!"

Souji's eyes snap open. "Gerrison."


"Keep flying upwards. Get the height advantage so they can't use their cannons so easily, then pivot the lightning lances downwards. Their airship is primitive compared to ours."

Gerrison nods, and turns away.

"And one more thing."

Gerrison stops, looking back from under the wide-brimmed hat. "Yes?"

Souji says with a perfectly straight face, "Find me a dry cleaner." His voice becomes tinged with unadulterated menace. "This is about to get messy."

A moment later, a body falls off of the ship. Souji Murasame, looking at the ground below him, with a massive scorchmark across his chest, spreads his arms.

He stops falling, as air rushes up around him on an invisible cushion. He steps, walking on the wind as easily as if it were air, as he begins sprinting across the path towards the enemy ship. "You are going to regret your choices today." Souji says, moments before be draws his katana.

The weapon, a plain wrapped handle with the Murasame insignia stamped into the hilt in brass, gives way to a strange crimson metal forged into a thin-ring crossguard. The blade beyond is black as night, etched with sigils of hunger and loss. The blade has been drawn.

"I will show you what it means to face the Murasame!"
Artemis Eurus What in the <GOOSEHONK>!? She heard Ramza's warning, she was preparing to 'blink' away from Louis before the attack hit home--but Louis grabs her and holds her fast. She is sure he is going to try to crush her there in his arms, squeeze the life from her--but no, he's protecting her.

Artemis looks up, her green eyes twin to his, to see /her brother/ there, before the monster takes over once more and throws her bodily away from him.

Luckily, her body has been ruthlessly trained, for her mind can barely recover from the shock as she turns her self in the air so that she lands on her feet, skidding backward to leave a rivet in the dirt.

Artemis screams with renewed rage as Louis once more goes after Ramza--but the Judge gets in the way. Tch, well, she's thank him later! Protecting Ramza is a hell of a job.

She will place herself between Louis and Ramze now, looking back toward Ramza. "GO. NOW." she demands, and gods help him if he doesn't listen. He should realize that she doesn't mean to die here, and that between her and Evja, they can cover the escape then follow when it is safe. Another airship has joined the battle, apparently on their side, that'll bloody help too.

Artemis focuses on Louis now once more, her green eyes almost seeming to glow from beneath her mask. "I wear the mask because of shame, yes....but it is not my shame--it is yours," she replies, then dashes toward him, feinting a strike high then dropping low, slicing across his abdomen then spinning, reversing her grip to stab the katana through his torso--on a normal man, a killing blow. But Louis had healers, she knew.
Ramza Beoulve As Louis insults Artemis, he would grimace. "Bite your tongue, Ser. Her only shame is that she was unable to finish you before you murdered your Lord Father! She has naught to hide from a butcher like you."

The man charged, and Ramza would brace himself for the coming attack, unsheathing his Cinqueda once again. This was going to hurt. "Ever shall I dare to stand in your way!" It seemed the age old adage on what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object would be answered. Unfortunately for Ramza, his sense of justice was the only immovable object here, not his body.

Ramza hadn't actually ever been introduced to Evja despite seeing him previously. So it might have suprised him when the Judge introduces himself by diving in the way of the thrown halberd, sparing him all but the inconvenience of the kinetic storm whipping up his hair and cloak at the Judge's body blunts it. "While I thank you for your timely intervention, Ser. And I agree, I would far prefer to be away. The better question is, HOW?"

He'd gesture to Adela getting up, brushing herself off, and continuing to try and shore up the ice bridge across the chasm Louis created. Until she finished, it was obvious they had no choice but to defend themselves.

He'd gesture towards Theodore with a grimace, hold up a fist, then four fingers. The man would throw a globe towards Louis. Louis might have been shocked when the globe burst onto him, soaking him in entirely mundane water. Ramza would grin. "Perhaps we should cool off that temper of yours...."

Raising a hand, he'd begin a new incantation. "Effortless water, break your silence and speak unto me forgotten truths!"

And then that water would freeze abruptly, encasing him in crystalline ice.
Sarafina Carenze Being called a cheating bastard is a great compliment, it's a pity that Sarafina can't hear him. Of course that wasn't really her idea. She has a different one in mind. Those two mages must work well together by virtue of having been hired as a unit, but can they work as part of the ship? That might not be a question answered today.

"HERETICS!" She calls out, "WE'LL COVER YOUR RETREAT! I cannot promise we can beat this enemy! So you better hurry and think of repayment!"

She approaches the bow of her own ship, handing the wheel to Gangway. "Time to jump their--"

Seems like someone beat her to that idea. A walkway of wind? And he's charging alongside that. Her lips twist into a grin.

"Ho ho..." She manages. "This young one has my style of engagement! I'm taking off, we can't let that man on our ship!" She turns to Souji and shouts over to him.


She leaps off the bow, the jetpack igniting behind her. "BUT I AM SARAFINA! THE WESTERN WIND!"

She swoops forward, intending to intercept Souji.

They can't catch Souji's ship with the cannons. Sarafina radios in additional commands to the mages--the firefighters are still busy with the fires, but as nobody boarded them, their ability to repel invaders is irrelevant at the moment.

The black mage unleashes another fireball, they can still hit with that! But the bigger issue may be the white mage, who has started to channel DISPEL magic towards the enemy ship as per the Captain's orders. It's an experiment, but a true strategist has to plan for future engagements as well.

Sarafina swings that hugeass chainsaw for Souji, intending to use her superior range to force the young man back!
Louis LeBlue "I've heard of you." Louis points his blade at Evja. "The betrayer. You have no juristiction here, Judge of Jylland! This is the realm of Mullonde." Still, the man stays his hand this time, aside from pointing that blade at Evja. Then Artemis speaks up once more. "Poppycock!" Louis answers her when she speaks of the mask. "I won't have you dirty my name with that disgusting mask!" He answers and grabs for the thing with his hand in anger, just as she feints her strike and indeed tears her sword straight through his torso.

The man's eyes go wide. His mouth gapes open for a moment, before he grabs down at the blade itself, in an attempt to pull it out of him! The fact that this man is still moving truly does make him a monster! "It's only normal that a Heretic would believe another Heretic's words! Thus the more reason to slay the lot of you!" Louis coughs, turning towards Ramza and stepping forwards, flashing his blade across Evja's chest in order to get the Viera to get out of the way...

Only to be splashed with water!

Louis looks down upon his armor, touching the water, and then glares at Ramza. "YOU DARE INSULT ME!? A SHRINE KNIGHT!?" He roars, and is just about to bring his blade down upon Ramza's head when the spell truly takes effect, and the man ends up frozen in place!

The rest of the forces then finally arrive to aid their leader, running straight towards Ramza and his forces. Indeed, they will need to move fast to flee. But they have an advantage. They are not wanting to ride far from their frozen leader. And unless Evja gets out of there, he might see himself arrested... or worse... flee with the Heretics and presumed 'one of them'.
Artemis Eurus Today is not the day fate has decided for them. Artemis has another oath to fulfill now, sworn in blood just as she'd down over the body of her father. Two twin marks upon her palms that reminds her of her purpose.

Artemis looks to Louis, just breathing, filled with disappointment, anger, horror....and still, /still/ begrudging love.

"Damn it," she says, then turns to go, looking up toward Sarafina, soluting her with her sword before she looks to Evja. "Come with us," she says, then begins to run like the wind.
Souji Murasame The conflict between the airships has become a functional stalemate, basically as intended. Souji has no serious interest in committing his resources to live combat. That's going to /eat into his overhead/ and that's a major problem with his current income levels. The battle below is basically irrelevant to Souji at this point. He's arrived and made his assistance and presence known. When he gets the chance he will speak with the Templar later to discuss future actions.

As well as this... Beoulve, perhaps, should the former not work out. He's pretty sure that they will want what he has to offer, however...

All this aside, however, he wants to make a point to the captain of the ship. This... Sarafina of the Western Wind.

"An aerial combatant?!" Souji says... And he smiles. "I see."

The dark blade clashes with Sarafina's chainsaw, throwing up fountains of sparks as Souji literally rebounds and leaps through the air, using his wind manipulation capabilities to allow him to battle Sarafina on her own turf. Flashes of light and the clash of metal rends the air as Souji lunges back and forth, trying to find an opening in her guard. The chainsaw spins, nicking his face and causing him to fall back. A hand rises, touching the blood and looking down at it with a grimace. "You're competent." Souji says. For him, that's high praise. "Then I have no reason to hold back. Behold the Murasame Sward Arts!" The blade slashes, cutting upwards through the air as he begins launching a series of pressure waves at Sarafina, following it up with a crackling lance of lightning. With a swift motion, Souji hurls the blade itself at Sarafina, the clearly magical weapon spinning towards her, as if hungering for her blood before rebounding and spinning back to his hand, recalled by a mystical force.

Meanwhile, a fireball hammers into the Ame-no-Torifune. The impact creates another dent, but the ship is not made of wood. It is made of-


...You suck.

A sizling, crackling resonance is created over thie ship, causing it to lurch unsteadily. The main energy sail flickers, and for a moment, it looks like it is about to go out.

Deep within the ship, three Black Mages work to reestablish control, quickly.

The ship immediately begins turning away, trying to get out of range of the enemy mages.
Sarafina Carenze Sarafina can't break to wave down at Artemis, but she does take note of her acknowledgement. She takes further notice of the reaction of the ship to Dispel magic. It doesn't destroy it but it does seem to hurt it enough to encourage it's retreat. Sarafina is more confident in white magic than black magic, in no small part thanks to Rosa, but she signals to her ship to not pursue. She has nothing against Souji or his men, making the ship fall back serves her goals just fine. It's a pity that she somehow doubts it will be that easy next time. They'll probably prepare Astras next time they go out, but that's less magical energy that they can throw at her ship. She'll take it.

"Follow the retreating Heretics!" She calls out to her ship. "I'll catch up!" She can't let this guy on her ship. She just KNOWS that something bad will happen if she does. It's just intuition, she has little proof of his skill so far, but she knows enough about warriors to know this man is skilled just by looking at him, and while he is young he doesn't seem foolish on top of that. If he intended to board by his lonesome, he had good reason to believe he could do serious damage to her mercenaries.

"You are young, so I will give you fair warning." Sarafina says. "I don't hold back. Your potential will be wasted if you fall here."

He's a sword mage of some kind, she thinks, watching him as he bounds back. It's not just wind walkways. He doesn't have any scars, she thinks. He's either inexperienced or hasn't been pressed often...or has excellent healing services. Sarafina spins in midair, avoiding a stab in the chest but taking a swipe across her left arm for her troubles. She sees it rebound and attempts to smack the blade with her chainsaw to knock it back towards Souji but higher through the air, trying to get him to miss the rebound catch.

She doesn't have to beat this man, but there's the pride of her company on the line here. She needs to at least give him a good one before falling back. She darts forward, feinting a swipe with the chainsaw--

and twisting into a clobber across his face with the Power Gauntlet, glowing a bright red as it briefly empowers her strike!
Souji Murasame There will be Astras. All of the Astras.

Souji, meanwhile, is up against the most dangerous person he's seen from outside of his world yet. She is proving to be adept at her chosen environment, which causes Souji some irritation as he is unable to land a solid blow on her.

"Nor should you." Souji says. He is about to say more, when he sees Sarafina send his blade flying. The first thing she notices upon contact is that the weapon is incredibly heavy for what should be a light and agile slashing weapon. Odd.

He frowns, and turns, reaching out his hand towards the weapon as it is sent spiraling over his head.

The blade smoothly curves, and smacks back into his hand, as he spins it there, as if it was just a normal katana to him.

That's about when the Power Gauntlet lands. There is a dull THUD as the Gauntlet hammers into the side of his face, cracking his Moogle Glasses and neatly dealing high Punch Damage to Souji's face. He reels, falling back with one hand up to the damage dealt there.

"Tch..." He hisses... And then he sheathes the blade. It has drawn blood, it can be satisfied. For now.

"We will meet again, Sarafina of the Western Wind. Count on it." He says. A moment later, Souji launches himself back towards his own airship, joining his ship. There is no reason to stay here.
Sarafina Carenze A weapon like that... It's impressive. Generally throwing a weapon is stupid but if it flies back into your hand--and can be only stalled, not diverted--then it is effectively a very unusual boomerang. That you can stab folks with. That weapon is mega-enchanted, possibly even giga enchanted. She felt its heaviness which means its either incredibly dense or, again super enchanted.

Sarafina's injury may be less epic than a punch to the face by appearance but its actually more dangerous, as far as exchanges go--she may have forced back his ship, but she took the greater injury. She has to touch down before she starts getting lightheaded from blood loss. Thinking up countermeasures can wait.

"Such a young and capable commander," She murmurs. "Haven't seen one like this since the Commander..."

She throws a salute after Souji as per standard practice and flits down and after her ship. In truth she is exilerated, she hasn't had a proper air battle in ages.

This scene contained 46 poses. The players who were present were: Faruja Senra, Sarafina Carenze, Evja, Souji Murasame, Ramza Beoulve, Artemis Eurus, Louis LeBlue