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    Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

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    Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:10 am

    Fingers tangled with his own, Lexia allowed a bright smile to come onto her face.

    One thing that time apparently didn't want to change was Sly's damaged timepiece. It wasn't exactly functioning as it normally would, the gears slowly having stopped their ticking. They were somewhat stuck together, or they would whir and nothing would happen. A predicament which puzzled both Sly and herself, however, that wasn't why the inseparable duo had, once again, decided to come back to the one place which caused them so much pain, but also brought them together. A fate entwined and created by time itself which she cherished, no matter how dire circumstances ever got.

    She was grateful for it all.

    But here, they were searching for something which Sly believed her with. She'd been having dreams, vivid visions which she could have sworn were real. They were of a part of Cormere which she was more than hesitant to actually go through by herself or even with Nithya. It certain was more than dangerous with where the two were going now. Where they were going was simple enough.

    The ruins which housed the final gear to Sly's timepiece and would, hopefully, get it ticking once more.

    Currently the two were walking through a rather narrow path thick with twigs, treacherous rocks that threatened to slip away and tear them both down from their sure-footing. On more than one occasion, Sly had to hoist Lexia back up onto the path as the stones caused her to slip and stumble. For Lexia's part, she simply pushed aside the branches which lashed at both her and Sly's feet, ensuring that they both wouldn't have them slapping at their face. The two of them had experienced that enough on the journey here that she was really making it a point to ensure he wasn't lashed by them once more.

    Behind them was simply descending ground riddled with thick vegetation and treacherous grounds.

    Ahead of them was an increasingly steep climb. But that wasn't what made Lexia suddenly stop.

    Watch out... You're getting closer now, trust me. The voice spoke to her, no longer out of anger and hatred, but out of worry and genuine kindness, as if it were trying to help her in her goals.

    Slowly, a frown pulled onto her face, eyes which matched the colour of the gorgeous sky narrowing. Through the thick trees, she could make out a structure of some sort. It was definitely old, in the same style as the old ruins were built in. Vines were breaking apart the walls, but something was odd. Something was different. Letting go of his hand, she made a gesture for Sly to stop, she ducked down into a crouch, her skirt easily flowing behind her as she crept forward, eyes watching intently for anything near the ruins. She all but froze when she saw a shadow being cast on the old stones. However, her blood ran cold. Within the moments she had been looking at it, the shadow itself shifted. Something was alive and moving out there...

    "Sly, we might need to find another way around..." She said quietly, hoping that he would pick up on her quiet tone, understanding the need to remain quiet and not give away their location so easily. There would need to be another way in somewhere...
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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:41 pm

    The Atemporal Ruins.

    Never had he thought he had to set his foot upon the grounds that led to him an hourglass, and a stone that, still to this day, left a huge mark upon the city of Xanistristan. If only those around could still remember it. Compared to last time, it seemed the Xanistristan forces were no longer stationed here. Of course they would not. Not with what happened when he and Lexia had arrived to flood a majority of the ruins. It was also meant to be a place for tourists. Now it was to be left for nature to take its course and crumble the structure into nothing. The place conveyed a sense of nostalgia. He remembered when he first met Lexia here. And Nithya. How Lexia had changed, then she was back to her old self.

    Sly, on the other hand, perhaps arrived worse off than before. Trecking over fallen rocks and the dense brush, he, once again, clicked open his timepiece. Everything was still for a moment, then there was a loud tick, very irregular in tone and in rhythm. Then there was a whirl, as if a gear was left unhinged to spin at huge speeds before suddenly stopping. If anything, the complex clockwork of this device got even more nonsensical. He gritted his teeth, snapping shut the device. When they arrived, he quickly pocketed it, adjust his backpack and climbed up several more rocks.

    Unlike before, they ventured to another part of the ruins. Still above surface and intact, and well hidden. Not even Master Horus had documented another entrance in his diary, but he had been leaving speculations that there should have been one. And who better would have led Sly and Lex there than I̧̨͜n̡͡sa͏͝ņ̸͜i̧͡t͢͜ý itself? Gentle streams rushed down beneath his boots, manouevring between the pebbles and carrying with it the soothing ambient of their 'music', which added to the beauty of distant birds and the rustling leaves upon the breeze. The air was fresh with that of mountain flowers, and gentle vapours danced over his cool cheeks upon the morning sun. Yeah, there was almost no hint of anyone else before them that had walked by this place, and nature enjoyed its almost everlasting peace and prosperity.

    After the long climb, they stood upon one of the grander entrances. Fallen and cracked pillars lined on either side, covered in vines and lichen. The once beautiful and mosaic pavement split in several directions, grass and weed growing in between and washing out most of the colours. As for the entrance itself, signs of time and erosion upon the gold stone walls were apparent. On the brighter note, water seemed to be rushing down either side of the pathways through the trenches, all originating deep within the ruins. It would a wonder what was sustaining them, but Lexia suggested a different route.

    This may be the only way in, Sly said, taking a step forward. Does... it... know another way? He still froze up at the thought of I̧̨͜n̡͡sa͏͝ņ̸͜i̧͡t͢͜ý, still worrying that in the near future the monster would break out again. And again he would have to fight for Lexia. It would only be natural to doubt anything it would say, lest it brings them closer to a second wave of destruction.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:16 pm

    It?! Well, that's a little rude of him! I have name you know. Stupid people not knowing to use my name and just having other things, so rude... How many times do I need to attempt to explain that I... Oh whatever, I see how it is, be rude to Destruction and then demand my help. You should consider him lucky that you have so many intense emotions for him or I would bap him for being rude!

    Lexia rose her hand to her mouth to hide a smile, before her eyes continued to search the collapsed ruined around them. The place was more or less in a perfect state of restoration and damage, the two mixing so well together that they wouldn't be able to tell what was wrong to what was right. Slowly, Lexia shrugged as she took a few steps back from the timeless place. "Admittedly, they're somewhat reluctant to help you out more because you called them an 'it'. Apparently they want to be called what their real name is- which is somewhat fitting, considering what my abilities can do. Destruction. Call it that and they will be happy."

    I heard my naaame~ Okay, there's a secondary entrance which is halfway down a chasm. Incredibly hard to get to, but also incredibly well hidden. If you didn't have me here you would not know it even existed. Mind you, Creation didn't think that I'd ever do something like this... Or maybe it did and that's why they added so many... Hmmm... Actually, I am going to need to be quiet and try to recall them. However, the location of the entrance. Lexia, go to the edge. With a frown, Lexia did as she was told, her eyes scanning the small chasm which the ruins broke off into. Here, not even plants tried to grow, but also the birds and animals avoided the area.

    There is an incredibly thin path, do you see it? Again, Lexia looked, her head partially tilted to the side as her eyes scanned across the stones. However, true to what Destruction was saying, there was an incredibly thin path which wove and twisted on the wall. There was footing enough to use, but, without proper experience, no one would dare to use it. After all, there was an incredibly steep drop into a dry river down the bottom. With a shudder, she slowly nodded. Good! You'll need to follow that down. Do not follow the path to the riverbed, or a trap will trigger and essentially kill you. However, exactly halfway, you will need to look up. There should be a tiny lip that you can use to climb, and then come to a small tunnel after climbing up for around fifteen meters. And yes, that is right where the water is flowing down from there...

    Lexia paled a little at the dimensions of what was described as well as having the water across her face. However, her fear wasn't for herself, but it was for the person which she travelled with. Slowly looking to him, she gave a partially stressed smile to Sly. "Well, they know another path up, but the question is, how well are you able to climb rocks? Because I don't think that this would be a good idea if you are unable to do so... It's rather dangerous. I won't force you to go down into those paths as one wrong move could cost your life. However, if you would prefer a safer route, I can attempt to figure out just whatever that thing was which moved, and we can act from there?" Lexia offered easily, her mind still a little on edge.

    The only reason she was trusting this being within her mind was because it'd explained to her everything and even offered to help restore the one thing which it broke. However, it was rather clear that, while the beast had been manic with its own corruption from constant rejection, it distorted its mind to the point of even forgetting this additional gear.

    My name is Destruction... And I can hear your thoughts.

    "I won't lie to you, the safest way is for me to go through to the entrance of the ruins and figure out just what is there. Please, I-I think that that is going to be easiest for me to do... And safest for you as well."


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:15 pm

    He raised an eyebrow. It felt weird, that somehow I̧̨͜n̡͡sa͏͝ņ̸͜i̧͡t͢͜ý was with them and was speaking to him through her. And that I̧̨͜n̡͡sa͏͝ņ̸͜i̧͡t͢͜ý was peeved among the calmness of the environment. It was like talking with someone's imaginary friend. Except he was not really going to talk to it anyways, but towards Lex. Destruction, to him, was a slightly more outrageous name compared to I̧̨͜n̡͡sa͏͝ņ̸͜i̧͡t͢͜ý. Though he agreed it would be more fitting, consider the level of damage it could do and what it would take to bring it down.

    Lexia suddenly walked towards the cliff, where parts of the ruins had fallen into after some landshift some time ago. Except she walked in a manner, as if she knew where to look, like she had been here before. Sly followed closely behind her, knowing she was guided by this 'Destruction'. The chasm below was like a deep ravine. The dirt on the edges was still wet, leading all the way to nothing but fog, though he caught glimpses of some plant growth below. No matter what, Sly could not see what he was looking for. Nothing stood out for him, saved for some water streams that gushed out of the walls like a broken pipe.

    Some silence passed between them, but Sly imagined that Lexia was speaking to Destruction. He crossed his arms and looked out across the chasm, to the not so distant mountains. Pointed tops pierced through the fog and a range decorated across the horizon. From here, he could see the thin paths that weaved up some of them, rarely crossed and only for the mountain hikers. Deer and birds grazed and fluttered happily in their homes, not a single gaze towards the two. Either they could not see, or that they knew Sly and Lex were not a threat to them. It was quite the scenery, one Sly could camp the day for.

    But he knew they would have to get going.

    Lexia finally spoke, though he was not too happy with what he was hearing. Mountain climbing. Sly gave another glance and the wall of the chasm was rather steep, saved for some narrow paths that weaved through them. Perhaps made from civilisation that looked after the ruins but suffered from the unrelenting weathers and time. Now it looked rather unstable, with some points which he could slip off from. Sly gritted his teeth. If he had his timepiece, he would have just flown down instead. He then looked at the front entrance of the ruins. It looked promising and innocent. But mayhap littered with traps which Destruction warned Lexia of, and perhaps too luring a danger that would lead them to their deaths. But then Sly wondered how would the people of old cross those traps.

    He was not willing to risk searching if not even Destruction knew and suggested a rather... dangerous alternative. Sly swallowed, before turning to the trees within the shadows. Maybe we can find out who our assailant is first. And who knows? If they are armed, they may strike us while we are down there, vulnerable. He placed a hand over the black and red handle of his R20 rapier, getting ready to draw as he walked back onto the main walkway of the ruins. Be careful.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:56 pm

    She could tell by his stance that he didn't trust what she was saying. Or, more accurately, what Destruction was saying. Her shoulders sank a little as she saw him put his hand across his rapier, heading back towards the ruins. No. Her form stepped across the grounds in front of him, hands raised to gently catch his chest and stop him from proceeding. A smile crossed her face, his eyes shining with a little confusion at the gesture she did. "Just wait here, Sly. I will go ahead, there's no need for you to get ready to fight... I can do that for the both of us." As she spoke, her hand slid down his arm, taking his hand in her own. Carefully she pulled away his fingers from the sword, flipping it mildly to give his hand a surprisingly gentle squeeze.

    "I can take care of myself, I'll let you know when it's okay to come." She instructed, before pushing herself up to her tip-toes to kiss his cheek. Her cheeks flushed slightly at the gesture as she turned away from him, her feet carrying her easily across the unstable rocks and towards the grand entrance of the ruins. Her approach, unlike the blundering around Sly normally did due to the fact he simply wasn't use to uneven grounds, was incredibly smooth and quick. Exactly like a wraith.

    Ascending the last few steps, her eyes scanned across the grounds. Untouched for what seemed to be countless years. Thousands of years, actually. This is the last resting place of the spirit who Creation admired the most. The reasons as to why that was, I do not know... They did incredibly well to actually keep that information hidden from me. However, Lexia. Be careful in these ruins. I do know where exactly they are, but I know that this place is laced with traps and things to put off others from invading. But I fear that my presence may also compromise you now...

    Lexia froze, taking several steps backwards from the entrance, her foot clipping a rock to send it skittering down the loose stone path. Her heart began to race in her chest, what the hell did that mean?!

    The sound of ticking came to her ears, her head snapping to the side as her eyes were quick to locate the source of the sound over her own beating chest. Had Destruction just lead them both into a trap? Of course I haven't! Not intentionally at least... She cursed as she saw the clicking clockwork slowly appear around the edge of the pillar. Instead of backing away, she silently ran forward, her back pressing against the golden walls as her heart raced. Lexia stayed completely stationary, well aware that Sly would be able to see whatever the hell it was, as her hand flicked out to the side, still hidden by the golden walls as the thing moved within them.

    With a gentle snap of her fingers, her powers began to ignite at her hands, summoning her crimson flames. She glanced back at Sly, trying to see if he could see it and, if he could... She hoped that he would get what she was waiting for him to tell her.

    When it's back was towards her.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:55 pm

    He was quickly stopped by her hand, and told she could deal with it herself. If he were his old self, he would have just reassured her and said he could take care of it himself. But without his timepiece, it was only then that he realised just how dependent he was on the device. He had no problems with the R20, but it would mean what he could fight was severely limited. Before he could say anything to her, her hand glided down to his arm, then clutched his hand. She told him to wait, before pressing her lips to his cheek.

    Sly flushed a little, his hand hovering near his cheek as she parted, but decided to leave it and wait. He buried his hands into his pockets and huffed, the morning mist billowing from his mouth like smoke. At least he would not be completely useless, he thought. Not risking another crisis like the last time they were within these ruins, he thoroughly prepared his medical kit, along with several ropes, hooks, clothing, rations and a dented flask full of water. This time, he would have to go... below his gentlemanly ways and rely on Lexia for most of the fighting.

    He watched her carefully as he stood beside one of the pillars still intact. The carvings upon them faded with time, with what was left becoming far too illegible to decipher. As he was about to call out to her when he saw her on top of the steps, she suddenly dashed... forward? Looming from behind one of the pillars, rolled a ball, thin grooves lacing around its edges. It was like the size of a boulder, made from copper and iron of sorts. Then, another one rolled from another side, completely identical, and they met at the very centre of the path, clanging at each other. To Sly, they looked familiar...

    Then it hit him. His heart stiffened, a loud pop coming from both as a layer of the balls unhinged, falling out like paint peeling off a wall, and it revealed the hidden gears inside. Spiralling and ticking uncontrollably. Then the rest of the ball opened, their parts pulling apart and reshifting, sliding over one another and clicking into place. The gears moved along with them, the balls slowly taking shape into some sort of tables. Or that was what he initially thought. Several appendages were built and transformed, the legs becoming crooked and flexible, and then the front of them gapped open, and a metallic howl echoed from the machines.

    Clockwork cougars, Sly thought, immediately drawing his R20 and dagger, before placing his back against the pillar. As the structures scoured and looked around, their bodies were still forming and moving around, conforming into the details that resembled that of a cat almost perfectly, the sleek rippling bodies allowing for agile and fast movements, and their claws, rows of hook-like daggers scraping across the ground. One of the cougars snarled towards the entrance, and bounded towards it. The other, stood guard outside.

    Screw this! Sly hissed, before trying to make a run for another pillar. He got the cougar's attention, and it roared in his direction, hopping off the main path and prowling towards him. Its growl grew louder every fleeting second, and with it, his heart hammered against his ribs. You can do this, he said to himself, swiping the R20 up and down, until like a tuning fork it chimed a low note.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:32 am

    Claws sounded on stone, gears whirring violently as whatever it was made its way up into a proper form. The sound was mildly grating on her ears, but Lexia refused to move, her hand closing around the crimson flames. As patient as always, the black haired girl waited in pure silence as clockwork continued to move, the sounds drawing closer to where she was. But her eyes never left Sly, waiting for him to give some sort of signal that it was vulnerable for her to attack its hide. However, the signal that he made was anything but what either Destruction or Lexia expected.

    What is he doing!

    Sly stood up, saying something that Lexia could even hear from where she was. That seemed to get whatever it's attention was, but that wasn't what terrified Lexia. Sly was there. He was out in the open, something that she really didn't want him to do. He was practically defenceless, he didn't have his functioning timepiece. He had nothing to defend himself with.... He was going to go up against whatever the beast decided to do to him defenceless.

    No. She... She couldn't let that happen.

    Lexia's eyes narrowed as a frown furrowed on her face, her heart pounding in her chest as the clockwork cougar-like creature prowled forward. She could almost see its anger from where she stood, gleaming in its sightless eyes. Swallowing hard and practically steeling herself, she waited until the cougar was well and truly past her from the pillar. That was when she shouted, diverting the cougars attention from Sly. In the same instance, her lance flew from her hand to slam into the cougars neck. What she was hoping to do was rather simple. Distract that thing and let Sly get close enough to strike it. However...

    What was she going to do if it decided to lunge for her throat?

    That's when she realised something rather vital. Her left hand went to her hip, where she normally held a dagger for emergency situations exactly like this. However, it was missing and her eyes caught the faint glint of steel in the high sun that caught her attention which was several meters from her. Feeling the blood drain from her face, she realised that there was no way she could get that easily. Her fingers partially snapped again, trying in vain to call upon her flames.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:57 am

    He whirled the R20 until he held it in a reverse grip, like he was to stab someone with a dagger. His back pressing against the wall, he readied the blade, the vibrations sounding a strong chime against his ear and taking away much of his ability to focus. But before he could perform it, a soft whistle echoed from the ruin's entrance, snatching the cougar's attention, the gears cranking as it turned its head. In the same time, a sickening sound of metal scraping and glass breaking followed.

    The cougar which Lexia impaled landed directly into its neck. Its yowl turned into some bloodcurdling electric noises, like someone would hear from a faulty mechanical and interactive toy, combined with the static of television. With its mechanisms jammed, the cougar's head was stuck at the roaring pose, almost falling over and dragging the javelin with it, and collapsing onto the ground.

    Sly struck while the last cougar was distracted, impaling the R20 right into its chest. The gears and supports parted like torn cloth from the impact, and sparks flew everywhere as the R20 sawed into the mechanisms, accompanying with it the ear-piercing screech and the smell of molten metal. Before it became too unbearable, Sly, with a war cry, yanked the blade out, almost losing balance himself. His shoe bumped over a fallen rock, and he toppled over, grazing his knee. As for the cougar, it very slowly, as gears and pivots fell from its wound, looked towards its wound. Its movements shook, the gears groaning against one another, before, with one dying look to the sky, and a howl just too late, the animal toppled to the side, still in that same pose. Unmoving. The ticking growing faint, until all was quiet.

    Sly looked up to Lex, a hand to his racing heart. And forced a smile. I am not completely useless. He said with a small laugh. He tapped the R20 against the rock, the vibrations drumming against it until it stilled, before sheathing the blade, and he made his way towards her. Come on. It is likely the rest knew we are here.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Thu Aug 31, 2017 5:51 am

    Thank goodness the first shot was a kill shot, or Lexia was going to be grappling with that clockwork monster. And, from past experience, she knew that that wasn't the most enjoyable thing to do, especially considering the sheer power that somehow was held by those claws and that metallic clockwork.

    Lexia felt the flames whip around her hand as she was more than prepared to step forward and hurl the second lance across to the second cougar which Sly skilfully approached. Only to have him slash into it with that rapier-like sword which he carried. A horrific, ear-piercing noise cried shrilly in the air, causing Lexia to give a startled cry of pain and raise her hands to cover her ears. However, that did very little to stop the soul shattering noise from actively stopping and grinding through her being. She collapsed to her knees, her form curled over itself as she squeezed her eyes shut, fighting off the horribly high pitched whine. The only form of relief that she eventually had was when Sly tore it free from the cougar and allowed the corpse to sit there, the clockwork ticking until it finally stopped.

    Lexia on the other hand, felt her stomach doing constant flips, the noise enough to drive her body into a partial state of disorientation. Instead of really moving too much, she sat backwards against the golden wall which she was somehow still near, or did she back up to it in an initial attempt to distance herself from the noise? She didn't know. Her world felt as if it were doing flips when she slowly raised her head, resting the back of it against the wall as Sly came over. He spoke, but her ears weren't paying much attention to him over the ringing of her ears. Her eyes were drawn to something else though, a tear in his pants across the knee. She raised her hand, fingers gently weaving through the fabric to be placed on his warm skin. Here, she called on incredibly old powers, her healing gift restoring the damaged tissue with ease.

    "Useless or not... You still were hurt... Don't do that to yourself." Lexia scolded lightly, being careful not to say too many words at once as she still felt her stomach ready to empty its contents at a moments notice. However, regardless, she forced herself to her feet again, wrapping her arms around the taller man in a sudden embrace. "Please... Sly... Don't be too reckless with that, okay?" She almost begged him of that, before she released him and turned away. He was still right though, if there were any guards, they would know that the pair were present at the ruins now. With a certainty in her step, Lexia began to lead him further into the ruins. Her eyes darted from left to right, constantly scanning the old buildings which clearly lead underground. The path which they walked upon almost seemed to be sewn with gold, the buildings themselves shimmering in the constant light of the sun.

    Cracks had appeared through every pillar, which only added to their mystical beauty. But Lexia couldn't take the honour of actually looking at the places around herself. Instead of enjoying the first look here, her sapphire orbs watched for anything that even seemed remotely out of place. A vine straying too far to the left. A shimmer of wire in the dying light. The uneven stone slab that stuck out a few centimetres compared to the others. Each and every thing, Lexia was taking in. However, she couldn't help herself when she made her way towards one of the larger grand buildings. Carved on either side of the entrance were intricate patterns of water, which also seemed to have something else in them. However, she simply couldn't pick what they were due to the natural erosion the poor thing had been a victim to.

    Here, the light was lower and she walked into the room. But the moment she did so, she could sense Destruction becoming more uncertain. The room which they were in, even though it had a gorgeous fountain of water flowing from the center of the building to cascade down into lower levels to quench them of their need of waters... Something didn't sit right.

    Cautiously, Lexia continued to make her way forward, "I don't think we should be here, Sly, it's... Awfully... Eerie... The silence, we don't like it..."

    But she chose the wrong time to speak.

    It covered the sound of a pressurised tile being stepped on.

    A series of faint clicks made themselves known, almost silent over the sounds of the rushing waters. Four slots on the walls, two to her right and two to the left opened, barely visible in the dark. One orb from each slot rolled forward, the sounds of those gears twisting and turning once more sounded, chilling Lexia as she looked at the faint silvery objects click open once more, forming some form of insect.

    However, she was too distracted on them, taking a step back as another rather series of gears whirred, something firing straight at her and Sly from the darkness.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Thu Aug 31, 2017 4:24 pm

    He stopped, just momentarily as she placed her hand over his wound. The thought of wincing at the touch died out with the mild heat emitting from her hand, and the glow of her magic circulating over his graze like water. It was only a small wound, but never had he thought that Lexia would come to possess healing magic. As he next expected the wound closed over, with nothing but the tear of his pants to show where he had previously been hurt. Thank you, he said, smiling to her. If she were well to look up and see it. He placed a hand on her back when she was doubling over. His mouth opened, words of concern almost left his lips, but even he knew what was going on. He had experienced it himself. The shrills and screeches of the R20 once it pierced into anything. Because he trained himself with using the sonifier, he was more resistant to its nauseous noises. No one at first could stand it, but Lexia's first impression towards it was more... over the extreme.

    Then she suddenly jumped onto him, her arms wrapped over his shoulders. Sly gasped a little, almost falling back. She spoke her worries for him, and he could all but wrap his arms around her in return, placing his cheek to her hair. I can take care of myself... within limits of course, he responded, before letting her take the lead into the ruins.

    Walking past the entrance was rather uneventful. There were no backline guards to the entrance. Instead, the place was welcoming. Far too welcoming. With every echoing step across the murky halls, the roars of rushing water filled his ears, like a war raging for eons with no clear victor, nor silence in sight. He readied his R20, eyes darting to every crack and vine that robbed the former beauty of the ruins. Despite the lack of windows or any crystals, the walls of goldstone lit the path forward.

    The first room they came across was simply a bridge from one end to another. One either side, nothing but the chasm for the water to drain into. Waterfalls lined either side of the walls, cascading from one bowl or platform into another. Their colors... transparent and strange, as if time had not stained them. Some vines had grown around the bridge, no bigger than ten metres wide. As they stepped further, it was like their presence activated another mechanism. From above the bridge, a wall of water poured from the very top and over either side of the bridge, almost like a curtain for their arrival and blocking their view of the walls. At this point, he could feel the mist across his face.

    Before Sly could address, he froze as the tile Lexia stepped on gave way, and sunk a few inches down. Immediately following after, a blink of light flashed from the other end of the bridge. Look out! Sly rushed forward and tackled her, pushing her down, just as something heavy and fast whizzed over and grazed his hair. It clattered behind him, just before they all collided to the ground. It was a javelin, made of tiny gears and plates of very intricate design, reflective of that of the cougars they encountered.

    Metal clattered in front of him as well. This time, four clockwork balls rolling along the bridge. They quickly opened up, sprouting six thin legs each, a somewhat long body and a tail curling too high up that it hung over the small head. At its end, a large thorn erected, dripping some clear substance that permeated fumes on the ground. Clockwork scorpions. The four of them stood twice Sly's height. Their pincers clicked over one another, before they hissed at them, marching forward.

    Sly looked back and kicked the Javelin at an angle, sliding the weapon towards him, before rolling himself onto his knees. He never fought with a polearm in an official fight before, let alone one that was more designed for throwing. This was Lexia's thing, and it would make a lot more sense to just give it to her. Lex! Free javelin, he said, tossing it to her if she readied herself to catch it. Sly turned off the sonifier of his rapier, cutting out the sickening whirl until it was completely quiet. Without the vibrations, it would just be an ordinary rapier, but he could not afford to disable Lexia at this time. With that, he stood beside her and took position, a dagger hidden to his back, and rapier forward, ready to lunge. Do not worry about defence. I will pierce whichever tries to jump at us when you are busied.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Thu Aug 31, 2017 5:32 pm

    Sly's warning came only moments before she felt his form hit against her. Something travelling at a high speed soared over her head, clattering harmlessly on the other side of the pair. I didn't see that one coming... As soon as Sly's form was free from her, she glanced backwards to see a gleaming metallic tip from what seemed to be something. She didn't know, all that she was able to hear was her own heartbeat hammering in her chest. Swallowing hard, she pushed herself up to her feet, partially feeling her mouth dry with fear. What was high before them wasn't something that she'd ever want to go against. Yet, here the pair were, standing before four colossal scorpions.

    Sly called out her name, her head looking to him before she smirked, snatching the weapon free from the sky. It was a little heavier than she expected, a grunt of effort coming from her as she flipped it to have a better look at the weapon. However, her smirk was for a very good reason as she flicked it on a downward angle, flicking the incredibly sharp tip down. "Thanks, Sly!" She would be able to save her fire for later, in case she truly needed it. But for now, having just this was going to be good enough for her. Lexia winced only slightly when Sly's finger turned that darn sonifier or whatever it was off on the R20 blade thing. Calm down, Lex, you're fine now.

    I so am not...

    Upon Sly's suggestion, Lexia gave a small shake of her head. "This weapon is heavier than ones I have use before, I'll need to get a bit close and more personal with these things." She explained, while she judged the distance between the four insect-like clockwork structures. Without waiting for him to question just what she meant by those words, Lexia dashed forward to the right, the duo on that side being closer than the others. Here, one was around 5 meters behind and more to the right compared to the other. Knowing this from earlier, Lexia conjured the flaming lance within her hand, snatching it as she threw it forward and into the gears of its shoulder to its neck, the flames melting and disfiguring such things.

    However, for the closer one, she adjusted the grip on her lance. Javelin. Whatever. To Lexia, they were both one and the same thing. Feeling the weight of the thing beneath it, she went to take a step forward. You aren't holding back are you? Huh.

    Not the time, Destruction!

    It somewhat is as you're on water! Get off it before you sl-

    Unfortunately for her, the particular slab which she stood on was incredibly smooth due to the constant running water that ran from the fountain to where she stood. Lexia's footing, now compromised, lost traction the moment she tried to throw and release the javelin. It went wide, striking across its left legs, damaging it and crippling them, but nowhere near enough to actually stop it from functioning. In the same moment, her right leg gave out as her footing slipped, sending her straight onto her back with a painful crack.

    Too late now for that warning. But, seriously, Lex get up and move!

    She moved her hands, going to push herself back up from the fall, her back aching from the impact. However, she felt the back of the scorpions claw backhand her, hitting her straight onto the ground as the stinger came down, primed for her throat.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Thu Aug 31, 2017 6:43 pm

    He shifted his legs apart, one at a perpendicular angle to another, eyes on the left side of the bridge as he judged the distance of his lunge. Beside him, Lexia complained of the weapon being much heavier than it appeared, and he shifted a little closer to help supplement that disadvantage. That was, until she decided to recklessly run into arm's length into one of the Scorpions. Before he could say anything, she has already conjured a fire javelin with her free hand, and lunged it at the one at the right and furthest. The javelin landed cleanly, piercing through one of its front legs and into its shoulder. The scorpion clicked and staggered about, its mechanisms jammed and melting, filling the air with the molten scent, before it would collapse, disarmed.

    Sly slowly etched closer, eyes on the other two to see if any would retaliate. They just approached them at a normal speed. Just as he concentrated on the one closer to her, Lexia suddenly disappeared in his peripheral vision, dropping on her back and onto the ground. He did not even have the time to speak her name, or even worry of her health, as the scorpion jumped on her, its pincer already slapping at and pinning her to the ground. Sly spun the R20 around the legs, and impeded the path of the stinger. With a gentle chime of two metals clashing, the stinger bounced, and deflected off to the side, hitting nothing but the running water. Sly winced a bit. It was like a rock just fell on his blade, and he almost lost grip of it.

    Quickly he brought his dagger around from his back, under the pincer and attempted to stab at its head. Missed. Sly cursed beneath his breath, becoming desperate. His mind muddled and all over the place, going purely on instinct. The first that came to was to shove it. He did just that, and rammed his shoulder against its leg. The scorpion staggered a little, until its left legs ran over the smooth stone, and its belly slammed awkwardly at an angle against the edge of the bridge. Water splashed over its head and, with a high pitched screech, the scorpion was snatched away and pulled into the abyss.

    Lex, you alright? Sly said, huffing. He kept his attention to the remaining two, walking around the burned scorpion and cornering them to the side of the bridge. Sly kept his legs steady, fearing a step back would make him suffer the same fate as either Lexia or the scorpion did. He waved his R20 at each of them, trying to keep them back as they cautiously inched closer.

    Suddenly one of them marched forward and reared. Sly flinched. A huge mistake, and a window failed to capitalise. Before he could lunge at the exposed belly, it was already slamming down. Sly dropped to his knee, a dagger to block the incoming drop of a pincer. Then, before his heart could even jump to his throat, thrusted the R20 up to a blocking position and braced at the stinger. The impact forced him onto his haunches, but no recovery, as the stinger came down again. And again. Two in quick succession. The third one was a weird block, the very end of the stinger sliding off the edge of the R20 and just stopped mere inches from Sly's nose. Lex? Sly called out, just before the second scorpion loomed forward, beating its stinger as it was ready to come down on him as well...


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:59 pm

    The sound of metal contesting with metal came to Lexia's ears, a shrill sound as Sly's rapier deflected the stinger. After a series of exchanged hits, Sly managed to send the scorpion over the edge. However, Lexia didn't hear nor answer his question as she saw its leg hook the edge of the javeline. Insantly, groaning while doing so, Lexia forced herself back up onto her feet as she broke into a sprint, after the scorpion as its leg dragged the javelin into the abyss.

    But there was no way Lexia wasn't going to have her weapon that easily. Lexia skidded down onto her knees, fingers clasping the edge of the steep drop as her foot kicked and hook the javelin from the depths of whatever was below her. Her hand lashed out as the metal flicked back up to her, grabbing it and throwing it onto the edge. Her fingers slipped mildly, almost causing her to fall straight down as her arm hit the side of the some dropped down onto her knees,

    It slammed through the metal, a metallic shriek coming from the scorpion as the javelin landed true, sheering straight through the stinger and breaking into the ground- the half of it acting like a shield for Sly. The second stinger slammed straight into the javelin but Lexia's shot rang true, protecting Sly from the deadly blow from that beast. Anger drove her to move forward once more. Flames, crimson and burning with a hunger which could never be sated, reformed themselves in the shape and appearance of that as a series of daggers. Smaller, less piercing compared to her lance, but Lexia needed a cover for the two of them. Already knowing what she was after as the thing pulled away from Sly, eyes drawn to the flickering fires at her hand.

    Aiming for the initial scorpion's head, she threw all seven of the daggers that she forged straight at the creatures head. Three landed true, slamming straight into what would be its eyes and jaw, the other four burning and partially melting the steel clockwork neck and legs, rapidly cooling from the waters around them to reset in faulty locations. This jammed it from working properly and to be blinded. The front pair of legs were all but destroyed from the small globules of liquid steel, failing to work in moments and coming to a grinding halt. That, plus the steel melted in the place of its eyes meant that it wouldn't see, having to go off... wait? Would it even attack if it couldn't 'see'?

    Huh. Maybe her plan actually worked for once.

    A shadow loomed over Lexia, the final true threat of a scorpion having caught up to them finally. However, its appearance was something to actively be nervous of. Especially if Lexia was too distracted by that scorpion. She felt something crash against her side, before something grabbed her on the other.

    Well, you've certainly gotten yourself in a bit of a pickle now haven't you?

    NOT NOW!


    Lexia's hands grabbed the pincer's, her strength truly being tested as she forced the two deadly metal pincers apart with a cry of pain, muscles aching within mere moments as the metal gears whirred and held her fast. The stinger was already beginning its descent straight into the side of her neck.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Fri Sep 01, 2017 1:39 am

    He curled, preparing for the worse. A breath held, and several patters of its venom against his cheek, and in seconds, the clockwork javelin shot out and pierce the scorpion's tail, which also blocked the other coming down for him. To his right, Lexia emerged after having fallen at some point? He was unsure. She launched a series of daggers to one of the scorpions above him. Some blasted and sizzled its head, others impacted the legs and shoulder. From here, he could see the gears melting partially, then solidified at the brush of water, becoming far too brittle and soldered into one another. With the gears fused, the scorpion could barely move, jammed up as it was, and Sly immediately parried the stinger away before sending the R20 through its belly. Several sparks burst like blood from the wound, and the scorpion gave its last whirl before everything slowed to a halt, and it toppled to the side.

    Lexia suddenly screamed beside him. The other scorpion. It had her in its pincers. Lex! Sly called, and, with a heavy grunt, kicked the dead scorpion away and freed his rapier. Making a cross with both rapier and dagger, he parried the stinger. Having stunned it in the recoil, Sly immediately spun the handle of the rapier, holding it in the reverse grip, and sent it straight down into the scorpion's arm. Having stabbed into the springs, gears and all, he twisted it around, tearing the mechanisms about to weaken the pincer. After freeing her, he was about to use the dagger to desperately stab at the head. Only to be knocked away by its other pincer and Sly skidded across the floor.

    That was when he saw a sight to be marvelled. Above, the wall of water burst outward, revealing another clockwork structure, cutting through it to meet them. He was unsure what it was, the colours of the sea glittering across its plates and gears. Then there was a glow of red. Eyes. And below it, a large maw with a row of fangs. On its head were a pair of antlers, and as it wriggled through, its snake-like body was protected by articulating oval plates, hiding the many complex mechanisms within. Two arms protruded from either side, ending in claws of what looked like that of eagles. Several fins grew from the arm, along its spine and even the back of its head, unfurling out after it pierced through the water, and it hovered in the air, like it was swimming. It was a dragon. Or perhaps a fish that had transcended into one, easily three times Sly's height at least.

    Its head backed up, and suddenly it grave a tremendous howl. One that would not drum hard into the ears like that of a lion or any typical dragon. But one that... somehow, also conveyed a sense of calmness. Like a long and powerful note of a large flute. Its long tail wavering in the air, the structure 'swam' left and right, then, following the waterfall that walled the bridge, it descended down, lower into the ruins. Sly rolled onto his feet, having at this point assumed Lexia had dealt with the last scorpion, and he tried to peer as far as he could down the bridge. The water distorted and obscured much of what he could see. And judging from the distant call of the structure again, it had gone too far for them to do anything about.

    Then everything was silent. What... was that?


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:13 am

    Missing the call from Sly, she was more than grateful when he parried the object away from her head. However, she was more worried with the pincers that continued to squeeze tighter against her abdomen. Tears of pain and a struggled cry of anguish came from her when he grip faltered slightly, allowing the pincers to push deeper into her side, closer to crushing her in half. But before it could actively slash though her side, Sly's blade came down into the arm, twisting violently and snapping away the gears. Instantly, Lexia was able to pry away the pincers, bruises coming over her form.

    Her feet hit the ground, collapsing into a partial roll forward, directly underneath the six legged creation. Conjuring her lances once more, her flames came up and slashed through the steel which made up the beast. Even though her mind was screaming with agony from each movement she made, Lexia carved her blade straight through the abdomen of the metal. Molten steel landed on her, burning and searing her exposed skin over her shoulders for a few moments before rolling off and bouncing off her gloved arms. However, the damage she inflicted caused the gears to stop their chime, staggering through the movements.

    Then she realised that she was still underneath it, a sound like that of a flute going off. She didn't know what it was, but whatever it was, it sparked Destructions interest incredibly.

    Unable to focus on that, she began to move once more. Quickly, Lexia rolled to the side, only to have the while thing decide to give up. The metal beast buckled once more before collapsing straight onto her leg with its own. She cried out in shock and pain for a moment, before tearing her leg free from the prison. She wanted to curse as a welt began to form from the contact with the steel, but it didn't matter. Slowly, she stood, partially glaring at Sly as he stood there, looking off into the fountain.

    "To be honest, neither myself nor Lexia saw that. However, judging by the sound of it, that was the spirit of the gear that we're searching for. I'd recognise the sound anywhere I went." Destruction answered Sly's question, speaking through Lexia as she was partially stunned for a few moments. Shaking her head, she walked back over to Sly, her heart skipping a beat as she saw the burns of acid across his face. Her shoulders fell as her hand rose, the gentle glow from her hand coming to her aid once more to heal his burns. As soon as they were gone, her thumb trailed down his cheek, her eyes shining with sympathy as she struggled not to hold him there and then.

    "You have to be more careful, Sly... Burns like that could scar you easily."

    Lexia didn't want to admit her own need to be more careful, but she was sure Sly could tell that, inwardly, she was terrified, her violently shaking hands giving it away.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Fri Sep 01, 2017 5:05 am

    The wall of waters on either side of the bridge finally died down, their roars becoming a pain to his ear but could tolerate the distant ones. He collapsed onto the ground, squeezing his sore left arm, strained after having to parry and stab right through metal without the sonifier. They were only at the beginning of the ruins, and yet both he and Lexia looked like they went through too much already. Who knows how many more clockwork beasts would be there, lying in wait between them and the dragon? Lexia reassured him that the dragon was what they were looking for. The sixth spirit of his timepiece. Wait. How did she-?

    Her warm hand pressed against his cheek, and the familiar healing glow took over. A soothing chill numbed across his face, and soon, what was burns from the venom on his face was quickly cleared. Then she told him to be careful about some minor scar, while she had took a huge beating herself. Red marks, welts, marked all over her leg, down to her boot, which completed the line with the faded grey scratch against it. Sly gently grabbed her trembling hand, and carefully settled her down to the ground, giving her a firm squeeze and a reassuring hand to her shoulder as they rested right at the centre of the bridge. You are one to talk, he said with a smirk, before turning his backpack over. From Lexia's expression, she was also in a lot of pain originating from her abdomen. He did not need to think hard recalling the pincers that almost split her in two, had he waited another second.

    He pulled out a large plastic box out of it. Black in colour but with a green cross at the lid. He flipped it open, revealing to her a neatly arranged assortment of tools, bandages, salves, vials, and even several disposable syringes. This will help settle the pain, Sly said, taking the honey salve and gently patting it over her leg, along the line of the welt. He doubted he would have to stick a needle into her for the pain around her waist, but he had brought general painkillers along. Here, he said, tilting a brown glass bottle of CODEINE onto his palm. Two tablets rolled out and he gave them to her. Then he took out the dented water flask, the lid squeaking a little as he twisted it open, poured some onto the lid itself, and presenting it to her to swallow with the pills.

    After that, he packed the medikit back into his bag and took a few sips of water himself, gasping for breath after and rolling his shoulder on its joint, still bothered by the slightly nagging pain. Never would have thought this will be even more of a pain in the ass. I would prefer trying to sneak past Xanistristan soldiers than fighting hoards of these things.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Fri Sep 01, 2017 3:45 pm

    His hand gently squeezed her own, even though her heart pounded almost uncontrollably in her chest, her mouth feeling incredibly dry from the pure fear which she felt. The claws of iron, their grip around her... She needed to be a lot more careful than what she currently was being. Taking a seat on the bridge as Sly guided her to do so, a sharp hiss of pain came from her, face partially screwing up in pain from bending over slightly. The pincers, even though she couldn't see it, she knew that deep purple bruises were beginning to form with ease, black, angry bruises from the pressure behind those metal gears. His hand gave her a gentle squeeze, snapping her thoughts back into the present as she gave Sly a half amused smile. "I'm sturdier than you are, and as such, I'm more capable of handling these sorts of beatings... Sometimes..." It would have been more convincing to Sly if her whole body wasn't trembling in fear, her breath laboured from how she sat.

    It was safe to say that Lexia was more than mess.

    "At least you came prepared with that." Lexia commented in half amusement upon seeing the large variety of bandages, syringes and all sorts in the medkit. She had no idea why he had that with him, but she was partially glad that he did. A faint smile came onto her face when she saw the dented flask, the thing having been with them through every single task that they ever went on. Sly carefully poured a lid full of water, handing that and two smallish tablets to her. Carefully she took them- or as carefully as she was able to as her shaking hands caused her to spill at least half of the water before actually getting it to herself, causing a darker area on her skirt to appear. She looked at the polls bitterly. Great, these things again, she had to swallow them. With a nod, she put them into her mouth, using the remaining water to flush them down. She handed the cap back to him, glancing down to her side as she used a hand to pry the cloth from her side. Ah. That's why it hurt so much She could only guess that the other side had the same bruising, but angry welts, some broken skin, and almost her entire side from her rib cage to her hip was purple. With a grimace, she let the cloth go back to hiding it.

    "Honestly. I have to agree with you there..." She sighed, pulling her knees against her chest to wrap her arms around her. She pulled a face, but mainly ignored the sharp abdominal pain from the action. Her shoulders ached from the burns of metal, but whatever Sly gave her probably would help with that. However, for some time, Lexia wouldn't speak, her eyes fixed on the metallic creatures before them. They may have been dealt with, but at what cost? There were more than one off occasion were either of them could have been killed in a split second had the other not acted. Slowly, she dropped her head to rest for a few moments across her knees.

    "You know... M... Maybe we should go back to DS and get someone else's help for this.. I.. I knew we knew it would be dangerous, but this is... More than what I expected."


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:53 pm

    He retrieved the cap from her and bagged the flask. A pondering thought hovered over his arm, if he should also take the painkillers for it. He mentally shook his head. If he had to be stronger and not be nothing more than useless weight, he would have to suck it up and push on. He had no arguments with how she was able to take a lot of punishment whereas he was a different story. Which was why he had very little choice but to rely on her to spearhead through the ruins while he would act on the backlines and protect or her heal her. In theory, it would have been a perfect resonance between the two. Sly relying on Lex to strike and drive them deeper in, and Lex relying on him to provide her as much support as possible. And yet, right at the first group of enemies, they were trembling and having second thoughts of pushing further on.

    Sly heard her wincing as she checked her waist. He saw in his periphery the hideous purple and black dividing her torso in half, almost cringing at even the memory of it and how she received it. At least the codeine would help with that, once it settled in her. Perhaps they should wait until it takes its course before pushing on. Sly raised a leg for his elbow to perch on, still sitting beside Lexia. He had to feel sorry for the soldiers that had to secure the major portion of the ruins in the first place before it became a tourist attraction. Imagine how many lives were lost. Or perhaps none, thanks to their guns and technology.

    It would help if they have another member of DS with them, but everyone had their own affairs to attend to, and Sly feared they could become more of a hindrance than help, especially if the ruins were this dangerous and absolute mastery in teamwork is required. Hence, why he only took Lex. The two were made for each other in this sort of situation. Sly looked to her, the fear obvious in her eyes, through her vain attempt at trying to hide it. He wrapped his arm around the back of her shoulder, and gently held her close, watching as the clear waters poured from the distance.

    We just needed to be a bit more vigilant, Sly said, rubbing her shoulder to try and reassure her. Lexia. I will be fine. You need not worry so much about a graze or a skin burn. Even though I have been stripped of my power to use the timepiece, I would be taken a fool if I had been relying so much on it. Sly sighed a little, then smiled. I am sorry. Without it, I must have placed too much of a burden upon you. Believe me, I did not want to see you hurt, more so than I am. But this will be the last request I will make from you. Will you do this for me, that I may restore to my former strength and figgt alongside you once more?


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:45 am

    Lexia felt his arm around her shoulders, gently pulling her into his side. The feeling of his warmth melted into her and, ignoring the pain from her side, she twisted slightly so that her chest rested against him as she lowered her legs slightly. Her arms wrapped around him, holding him close to her as she felt her tears trail down her face. The very fact either of them were still alive was a miracle in its own and Lexia just didn't want to admit how close the two had come to dying so frequently. However, Sly asked something of her that she simply couldn't do. She couldn't bring herself up to doing it.

    How could she stay and risk both their lives?

    Yet how could she go and leave this place for so long?

    If they were to go, then there was no promise that this place would still house the gear Sly desperately needed for his timepiece. Yet if they were to stay, either one of them could die. "I... How can I say yes and further risk either of our lives? I want to help you... Have you fight with me onc... Once more but... I... Is this worth it? Is this... I..." The words which she said were like acid against her throat, corruption to its finest as she buried her face against his white shirt, tears staining against the cloth that she rested against. Her arms tightened around him, holding him incredibly tight, ignoring the screaming pain from her side as she twisted across to hold him.

    If you stay, there is no promise that Zen will not pick itself up and move from here... It can do that, the single gear which could move itself from its resting place. If you stay, I can help you further drop down into the ruins, if you allow me to help you... And if Sly himself will allow it...

    She felt horrible. Even the very thought of just leaving this made her anxious, without even trying in this place... But truly, she had, but without a ready supply of javelins, there was truly nothing that she could do. She curled against Sly's form, the only thing keeping her from melting and giving up completely was her contact with him. But...

    Her mind was meddled, unable to even sort itself out from what she thought, fear and terror blinding her mind and reducing her to nothing more than a terrified child. Never before had she felt such a cold and crippling fear before.

    But neither had she been so willing to die for someone, or spend her entire life with them.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Sat Sep 02, 2017 5:19 am

    He held her tightly. The longer he held her in this embrace, the more he was understanding her fears. It was almost unlike her the last time they went to the ruins, but then again, it was not like they had any difficulties. Well, aside from the getaway. This was the side of her which he was unfamiliar with, but even that was to be expected. A warrior herself, even the strongest of which have their limits. He leaned his head against hers lightly, rubbing her shoulder a bit more. His heart no sooner sunk to her words. There were a few more reasons why he wanted to see this to the end, namely to carry on the legacy of Master Horus and fulfil one of his dreams. He wanted to see the timepiece to its completion. But the reason he did not speak of it to Lex was because it just sounded selfish. There was little for her to gain in following him here, except to repair his timepiece so that he may fight alongside her. But to already risk this much...

    Sly smiled a little. Just like the good old times, when we first met. He referred to when they risked their own lives fighting the soldiers of Xanistristan, and became hunted criminals, just for the sake of collecting two artefacts, one of which brought even more devastation and the other... still a mystery. This was also what DS HQ was about as well. Stealing blueprints in heavily guarded facilities, assassinating a gangleader causing trouble, among other things. The more he thought about it, the less things seemed to have changed.

    Still, this is just the beginning of yet another of our life-risking adventures. This part of the ruins attempt to test our synergy no doubt. But at least we cam improvise with the weapons Xanistristan has yet to plunder. Who knows? Mayhap we will encounter another treasure room. Would you not like the thrill of exploring and uncharted territory? As he spoke, his heart raced. Not from worry or concern, but that of growing excitement.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:46 pm

    "You do realise... that... every single time we have come across something unknown without a doubt, it has always lead from something bad to something much, much worse..." Lexia mumbled quietly through her almost silent sobs. The last time they had even been in the ruins, it was different, she hadn't cared if she lived or died. But for some forsaken reason that she was well aware of, she didn't want to allow herself to just drop dead and die. That was when something else happened. "I don't wish to go deeper into these ruins, I don't want you to go through them alone without me, so what other choice to I have but to stay here... Because I know that you want to fulfill you masters last quest... Just like you did when we first met." She partially smiled through her tears, offering a hoarse laugh to accompany that.

    Javelins? The legs...

    Rather suddenly, Lexia pulled away from Sly, her eyes resting upon the three scorpions which hadn't exactly been thrown from the large bridge to fall straight down into the abyss beneath them. Tilting her head, she used the back of her glove to clear away her tears. They impacted her sight and that wasn't exactly what she needed at the moment. Swiftly, she made her way over to one of the legs, dropping down to the ground to gently pull it forward. The bottom sharpened into a rather firm tip, but that wasn't what she sought. Deep in the mechanical parts of the leg, there were several long rods that aided in supporting the clockwork beast. With a nod, her hand flicked her to summon her lance and, instead of throwing it like she normally was able to, she grabbed the lance straight in the middle. The heat flared for a few moments before it slowly allowed itself to be refined, before she followed the rods to the first joint of the leg. Flicking it out, she carved the lower section off with her flames, melting and basically tearing the lower leg free. It was around the size of one of the javelins that she could use, over a meter long easily, but she didn't stop there. With a hum, she pulled the severed part away from the body.

    "Rods can be used as javelins. However, I do not know what their durability will be. Perhaps one or two throws? Especially because of how these are made... Bah, Creation you were slack with these.." Kneeling over, her hand began to work on the metalwork which was all conjoined into one section. Removing gears with a speed that would even surprise Sly, she tore the leg apart to get into the five rods within. With a smirk, she pulled one of them out, testing the weight. Lighter than the previous javelin she used, but heavier than the flames she used in her left hand. Setting it aside, she pried off the end of the leg which, still, was rather sharp. Investigating it, she realised that it just wasn't going to cut it. With an annoyed look on her face, she tossed it over the edge of the bridge.

    Eventually, she found the part that she was looking for. Or, more accurately, what Destruction was searching for. Swiftly she stood, turning back to Sly as she tossed it to him. It was a small sphere, no larger than the palm of his hand. "If that can get into the gears of a clockwork beast then there is no way that it won't become disabled from this. It's designed to break easily, but in a way that's normally good for the creature. However, inserting it into a few vital gears and there we go. Easy fix for one of those pesky things."

    Then she knelt down once more, hands fiddling with the five rods that she managed to actually get out without too much damage. However, three of them were rather damaged and fractured. They would get through one use before they were history. The other two were in perfect condition, but they would only last a few rounds of use as well, depending on the density of the metal that they broke through. With a hum, she used the last few moments of her flaming lance to melt one of the tips of the five lances, ensuring that they became incredibly sharp. But then her eyes went back to the javelin on the floor.

    With a flick of her hand, the flaming lance vanished into nothing. And it was with that same movement that Destruction finally decided to allow Lexia to have control of herself again.

    Groaning, she raised a hand to press her forehead against her palm. Dammit, that thing didn't know when to actively give her a chance to take over again and the sharp headache that she was given because of it made her partially frustrated. With a sigh, she looked back up to Sly, a bit of a grin on her face. "Apparently Destruction says that I'm going to be helping you, and that that is final. Mind you, I didn't know that it knew about the rods to use as javelins... They're going to be helpful, but they're brittle. Oh, and you get to choose. Study javelin that I have used earlier... or these 5 here, I can't carry both of them..."


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Sun Sep 03, 2017 4:21 am

    He turned away with a gentle sigh, looking down at the uneven tablets that formed the bridge. Perhaps it was no use convincing her at this mental state, and that it would have been wise if they just turn back and rethink about what they could do. It was certainly not something Sly would ever in his life agreed to do. To be the one who forced her to come along for the sake of being able to endanger his life ever more for the thrill of fighting beside her once more. Why were they even brought here? For the sake of Master Horus? He would be damned if Sly had to force himself and Lexia's life on the line for the sake of a dead man's dream. Sly would just have to retire then. Without his timepiece, he would be better off remaining a butler to DS. Perhaps he could think of some other way of using his skills, or even harness new ones. Weighing his options was only redundant and a waste of time, especially if he had already made his decision.

    But before he could speak, she suddenly stood up. Just a few seconds ago, she was wallowing in grief, and now she was... checking the scorpion? Her eyes no longer had the look of sadness or fear, and very casually she just rubbed of her tears. If anyone just walked in now, they would not have known she had cried. Eyes filled with curiosity, she randomly tore through the scorpion, even using the fire javelin, and jammed it up into the leg, prying a few bars out of it, before tossing the 'husk' aside.

    Uhh... Lex? Sly asked. It was like he said nothing at all. She was far too focused with the thing, like she suddenly gained engineering knowledge. Lexia eventually had spoken, not about sorrow or worry, but rather with determination and fire. She talked about the rods in the thing and their potential to be makeshift javelins. Then she said something about creationism, to which Sly assumed she was talking of the gods that gave everything life. Do you need help with.. she immediately answered him by effortlessly tearing the excess gears and springs that stuck to the rods, which such speed and precision rivalling that of himself if he were to construct things with his timepiece. Yeah, that was definitely not her. But he was unsure if he should even draw against her or not. Something was controlling her, but for the better? Or for worse? What if it was I̧̨͜n̡͡sa͏͝ņ̸͜i̧͡t͢͜ý?

    Her eyes settled to him, and he quickly stood straight. His hands did not want to move for a split second, but he broke through and caught the sphere just in the wedge between his two hands. It was just that. A simple brass sphere. Though he had to admit the delicate grooves all over it, and the lightness. He held himself from chagrinning when Lexia told him the sphere was basically useless, and that he could use it to jam it against one of those clockwork beings. Not going to say much against... whatever personality this was, he pocketed the sphere, and watched her further refine the rods into the javelins. They had a much longer shaft, and the blade end short and a bit too thick for an ordinary javelin or spear.

    Once the task was done, Lexia suddenly groaned and appeared weak. Her explanation made him worry more than be relieved. Destruction had recovered enough to exert control over Lexia? His heart tightened at the thought. At any moment, it could turn against them and wreck havoc once more. Even if it had done a good deed and somehow convinced Lexia to stay, it would play him a fool if Sly were to let his guard down. He clenched against the grip of the R20. He needed to get his timepiece fixed. Now.

    You... uh.. Destruction can just rip more out of them. Your five rods are better I suppose.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:20 am

    He doesn't trust me.

    After all you have done, can you truly blame him for being so hesitant in doing so?

    ...

    He distrusts me just as much as you. Did you not see how his hand tightened around the grip of his rapier? He... thinks that you will take me over once more and probably end up destroying a city again. The one person who...

    Well, I do have to question what you are implying. If you do not remember, the events that we both remember apparently has not gone through, they are false memories but... In their place is something worse, much worse... A Destruction who isn't corrupt at all. And that's just weird, it's like the fog has been lifted, but why doesn't he trust me?

    I know the events didn't transpire for some reason... But just trust me, he's going to need a fair amount of time to actually trust you at all. No one has ever trusted you in the past.


    Without a word, Lexia nodded to what Sly had said, kneeling down to pick up the five javelins from the ground. Altogether and bunched on her arms like they were, they had some weight to them. Otherwise, they weren't actually too heavy at all. Spinning on her heels, Lexia jerked her head towards the furthest end of the bridge. But it was clear that she wasn't going to wait for Sly before she started walking again. Downcast, Lexia made her way across the bridge and over the pieces of metallic scorpion which were still on the bridge. Her short heels echoed faintly with every step she took, her skirt flicking almost wildly behind her, hair flowed with the breeze.

    ... I know no one has trusted me. I was out rightly rejected by my 'counterpart' countless times, how do you think that feels, aye? But whatever, that doesn't matter now. At least you trust me~! But, I must inquire, what would it take for him to even give me a chance?

    Not even I know the answer to that... I fear he doesn't truly trust me now after that display we had. Mind you, next time, give me more of a heads up than what you did earlier. I need more than just 'oh hey an idea...

    Sure, no problem at all. I can do that if I remember....


    Now that were more than halfway over the bridge, and her eyes were given ample time to actually adjust to the dark, Lexia continued to partially limp over the bridge. Her limp came from the fact she accidentally jerked her leg as she stepped over a slab of stone to jar her bad leg. Making her way forward, she looked towards the edge of the bridge. Where to...? There's a staircase, go to the wall. Quickening her pace, she did what Destruction told her to do, freeing her left hand. Scanning across the surface of the stones, her eyes eventually found a small movable stone to the left of the center of the bridge. Push it... Mortals needed a way down for when they looked to Zen. And she did just that. Upon doing so, a small section of the wall lowered to reveal a staircase below.

    Quickly, she began to descend the stairs, feet moving in speeds similar to that of a run as she almost blindly trusted the former beast which spoke to her now. But she didn't trust that Creation hadn't actively set up traps for the two of them. Or three of them, if she were counting Destruction as a being that threatened Zen's dwelling place. Lexia blinked. How did she know so many names?

    You're welcome.

    With a small smile that pulled on her face, she finished descending the flight of stairs... Only for it to lead right back onto another bridge directly beneath the one they had been on previously. However, there were a few differences. It was thinner, only around 30 feet across compared to the other, but it was also much shorter in length. The cascade of water could be heard beneath them, where the waterfalls finally found their resting place at the end of the abyss. She paused, holding up a hand to stop Sly as she slowly stepped forward, her left hand taking 4 of the javelins as her right clasped around one of them, grip so tight that it caused her knuckles to turn white. After several steps forward and onto the bridge, she hadn't triggered anything, so far. "I think you're good to come forward now, Sly." She stated, but her eyes didn't trust what she saw. She was on edge, worried.

    What did this bridge have in store for them this time?


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by sLy on Mon Sep 04, 2017 3:28 pm

    They were at it again. Speaking through only but their thoughts, he was left in silence as they tread the rest of the way across the bridge. The constant rushing water was about to do his head in. At least it was not getting any louder. Musty air landed on his tongue, and scent of brine filling his nose as the clear waters were betrayed by the impurities that infested the rocks in which they coursed over. The way she held the javelins was very awkward at the very least. No way would her running be any way efficient with them. Then again, if he had something that would help, he would have broken the silence - or whatever they were speaking of. Still, he could barely come to terms with, just a moment ago, he was speaking to the one that devastated Xanistristan. Could it really be them? What changed?

    He was to ask where they were heading off next, but as before, Destruction spoke only through Lexia. And from his perspective, she acted as if she was well versed with the infrastructure of the ruins - in a manner that she had been here hundreds of times before. This was furthered when she was able to find a hidden mechanism on the side of the bridge, that portion of the wall falling open and slabs of small platforms form to make the steps. And lo and behold, it lead to another bridge, right under the first. Perhaps around 30ft under, and much more narrower. The rails on this bridge was much shorter, stubbier. Lexia stopped him from going further, opting to taking the lead herself. Javelins out and at the ready, she prowled forward, her legs smoothly gliding across the air, a manner that was soft and delicate to the very fabric of space.

    Sly waited for her signal before he moved forward with her. As like her, he remained vigilant, eyes scanning the ground for any obvious traps as they passed halfway.

    Something clicked. The ground gave way before he could absorb what happened, and he fell onto his rump. Another click behind him. He spun around, staring directly at a torrent of water, as the back end of the bridge knocked up another switch and allowed water that was held back above to shoot out. Then it occurred to him this was a water bridge! Brace yourself! Sly shouted, curling and wrapping his legs in his arms. Thankfully, the water was not hosing out at high pressure, and it was more like a waterslide, shoving them forward and down into a corridor below another level.

    He kept his eyes open, his clothing already sticking to his skin and drenched, before he leapt on a ledge running on either side of the stream. Further forward in this dim passageway, the water continued to rush forward. Another click echoed from within, and Sly stiffened. Torches lit up immediately after. Then another echoing click. Several clockwork mechanisms activated, right in the water. Three... creatures, with four rudder-like fins for limbs, floated above the shallow water. Its head has a long neck and a snout formed, similar to that of a lizard, until a tiara of sorts formed around their heads, extending to makeshift horns.

    All three of their tiaras glowed, then their eyes and maw. The air screeched, growing in pitch. Then, with a howl, the three shot forward separate beams of light in their direction. Sly immediately ducked and rolled off to the side, watching the stones that were unfortunate enough to be charred black at its contact. But with how narrow this passage way was...

    If only I have Mirage, Sly muttered. Then he turned to Lex, running up close to her. Stick together, that way, we will keep their beams aimed at one point and not all over the palce.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

    Post by Lexia on Mon Sep 04, 2017 4:43 pm

    Lexia heard the series of clicks behind them, the five rods being held under her arm with ease. Lexia, get ready to throw the rods. Destruction advised as she turned to face the direction of clicks- which was right below them. Unlike Sly, she somehow managed to keep her footing as she the ground partially gave way. With a growl, she used her rod to slam into the ground, allowing her to keep her balance as she turned to look at whatever was- That was a bad idea. Inwardly, Lexia hated water and the fact that there was a nice ready stream coming straight at them. Screw that.

    Ripping out the rod moments after she drove it into the ground, Lexia didn't have much of a choice but to take the current as it swept her from her feet. During the confusion and torment of her mind, Destruction stepped forward to take control of her once more. Swapping the grip of the javelins, she waited several long moments until they plunged into the darkness and out again, before the ledge appeared. Throwing the steel up onto the ledge, she used her right hand to catch it and haul herself up. The action flared the bruises on her side, but Destruction wasn't too phased by it.

    I noticed you weren't.

    Heh, I'd say sorry, but you know... You would have frozen up by that.


    To hide the partial headache that Lexia received from that, she leaned over to pick up one the javelins, a sigh escaping her lips. "Unless you want me to hate you, please, never take me to a water park. I hate water slides." Lex commented rather bitterly, her blue eyes flickering up to Sly with a half smirk on her face as he came from the water, absolutely drenched. However, she realised she wouldn't be in any better way and she made an inward sigh. The pavement was still that of gold and marble, something which Lex always appreciated from these ruins. Aside from the other part, which almost was their demise. Well, her demise.

    Sudden chimes and whirs of metal once more sounded in the cold corridor. Cursing at their luck, Lexia flicked her head to face them. Sly was already looking, the small red red lights coming from the water... Oh great. This was exactly why she didn't swim.

    However, without much warning, a shrill cry came from them, rebounding from the walls of the corridor to pierce straight into her soul. It hurt more than that damn resonator and she squeezed her eyes shut, instinctively dropping to her knees. A red beam arched over her head, the wall behind where she stood charring into the darkness. With a snarl, Lexia flicked the javelin and cast it forward- aiming straight for between the creatures glowing red eyes. Her shot was wide, a pure retaliation to what she had been a victim of. It glanced off its side, jamming into one of the fins instead.

    Even Destruction itself felt the pain of that noise, something Creation probably gave to them to ensure that it was put off from going further into the ruins.

    Sly came up to her, but her vision was partially swimming. Almost slipping, she took a step forward to rest her hand against him, partially to stabilise herself as well. Shaking her head, she glanced over to those metallic things. "Don't... Let them do that noise again Sly, I can't concentrate and neither can Destruction." Lexia said quietly, the earnest tone in her voice hopefully enough to realise that she was being serious. Hopefully. The sound of something moving came to her and she stamped her foot against the tip of one of the javelins.

    The sound of gears once more came and, she shoo her head. Relying on where she held her hand against Sly's shoulder, she stepped forward and threw the item forward. This one landed true, slashing straight into one of the creatures necks and binding it down into one place as it broke into the stone wall next to it, pinning it there.


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    Re: Back to the Beginning [Private, Sly]

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