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Author Topic: As the Cycle nears its end  (Read 2854 times)

Offline Jharm

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As the Cycle nears its end
« on: September 04, 2018, 09:23:19 PM »
The following posts are going to simply be...teaser/fluff bits for the Epic story I will be running once EoT is complete.  Simply some stuff happening concurrent/prior to EoT  with a certain character that will be introduced in my story and kind of explaining why she will be where she will be when she joins up and such.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2018, 01:25:27 AM by Jharm »
When you can't run....you crawl...when you can't crawl...you find someone to carry you.

Offline Jharm

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Re: As the Cycle nears its end
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2018, 10:00:21 PM »
A lone feminine figure stands in front of a clear window, gazing out into the vastness of space. 

Another dream?

"Yes.  It was so real I felt as if I could reach out and touch any one of them."

A ghostly, translucent figure appears next to her.  The female gazes over at the "ghost" as she continues to speak.

"Who could they be?  Why do I keep seeing them?"

The ghostly figure gives a slight shrug before responding

"I do not know.  Perhaps simply just a recurring dream? 

The woman shakes her head, her gaze returning to look upon the stars outside the window.

"No...I don't think that's it.  I can't really explain it but it just feels too...real... to simply be a regular dream."

"Well then...perhaps they ARE real.  I must admit that they intrigue me, especially the shining one with the wings.  I feel as if I have seen his kind before.  A faint glimmer deep within the fragments of my memories.  Every time I almost recall it though...it escapes me."

"I think that settles it then; we must find them.  Once we do, then perhaps you will finally recall more of your memories and finally remember the reason why you were within that runestone and where you came from."

"We have no idea where they might be at though, what universe it is they are within.  How will we find them?"

The female shrugs slightly.

"Truthfully...I don't know.  Hopefully the dreams will continue and we may be able to glean more information from them to answer that question.  Meanwhile...we will continue to explore just like we have been doing."

The ghost nods and seems to shimmer away as the female clasps her hands behind her back and seems to speak to someone else.

"Activate the Warp shields and once inside set course for closest unexplored universe.  We have answers to find."

When you can't run....you crawl...when you can't crawl...you find someone to carry you.

Offline Jharm

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Re: As the Cycle nears its end
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2018, 03:46:35 AM »
"Well?  You in or not?  I'd like to win this pot while I'm still young enough to enjoy it!"

Piercing blue eyes gaze at the speaker as dark blue lips twist into an amused smirk.

"Impatience is never a good thing when it comes to this.  That being said...I'm in."

A thin, elegant hand reaches forward, the light glinting faintly off the deep blue nail polish coating the finely trimmed nails as the fingers push a stack of chips forward.

"Ha!  Three of a kind, kings.  Beat that!"

The woman chuckles slightly and gives a faint shrug.

"I've got two pair"

"I knew you were bluffing!"

The woman smiles and chuckles again.

"No you do not seem to understand.  Two pair....a pair of red fours (she lays down two cards) and a pair of black fours (lays down two more)."

The previously celebratory man goes silent as his eyes settle on the cards.  His smile vanishes and, after a moment, is replaced with an angry scowl.

"You cheated.  You must have!"

The woman leans back in her chair and crosses her arms as she scoffs.

"Now why would I bother cheating?  This is just a friendly game of cards last I checked.  Cheating takes out all the fun and excitement I say."

The mans scowl deepens as he slams a fist down on the table and then stands up, his chair clattering across the floor behind him.

"Don't give me that bullshit!  You cheated, and you know it!  I knew we shouldn't have let a woman join in the game!  There's only one way to deal with a cheater though..."

His right hand drops to his side and hangs near his holstered firearm.  The womans smirk disappears as her icy blue eyes settle on the weapon and then move back up to the mans face.  A hint of concern tinges her tone as she speaks.

"I would advise against such an action my friend.  It won't end well for you, and it completely unnecessary."

"Don't tell me what is unnecessary you bitch!  Get to your feet and defend yourself.  Cheater or not, I won't have it said I gunned down a woman in cold blood."

Those blue lips turn into a faint scowl as the woman slides her chair back and stands up, her dress rustling around her as she moves.  While two holsters are clearly visible on her hips, her hands simply rest on her gun belt.

"Such language is certainly not necessary....and will only lead to a nastier ending to this.  I offer you one last chance to see reason.  Sit down and let's return to the game before you do something stupid."

The man growls angrily in response.  A moment later his hand shifts downwards and seizes the grip of his gun. With impressive speed he draws the weapon.  Just as the barrel of the gun exits his holster and begins to tilt in the womans direction, a shot rings out.  The mans shoulder swings backwards as a bullet slams into it.  The momentum spins him around as his weapon spins across the floor, his body dropping to the floor as cries of pain escape from his lips.  A thin wisp of smoke escapes from the barrel of one of the womans revolvers before she spins it around and effortlessly slips it back into its holster.

"My shoulder!  Y...you crazy bitch!"

The sound of heels clicking across the metal floor can be heard before a boot presses down on the mans wounded shoulder, eliciting a cry of pain from him.  The woman leans down as she speaks to him.

"Have you learned nothing?  You accuse me of cheating and used rather inappropriate language towards me.  By all rights your brains should be splattered across this floor right now.  Yet do you learn from this?  No....you continue in your vitriolic display."

Her boot presses down a little harder, causing the man to cry out again in pain.

"You have ruined an enjoyable game of cards for me....insulted me countless times...and called me some quite nasty things."

The click of a gun hammer shifting backwards can be heard as the barrel of one of her guns presses against the mans temple.

"I should do it....but...I doubt the owner of this establishment would appreciate having to clean your pea-sized brains off the floor.  Therefore...you get off with your banged up shoulder and a warning."

The woman pulls the revolver back, while at the same time lowering the hammer and then sliding the weapon back into its holster.  She moves back to the table and scoops up her winnings.  She pockets most of it but deposits a sizable portion onto the nearby bar and gazes at the bartender in front of her.

"For the inconvenience of this incident and cleaning up the mess."

With that she turns and heads through the nearby doorway and exits the saloon.

Always causing trouble.

Trouble?  I did NOTHING wrong there.  Besides, he had it coming to him from what I've heard.

Well...I suppose at least I can never say I am stuck with a boring travelling companion.

The woman lets out a slight chuckle as she heads towards her docked ship.

Quite true...and I'm sure there is still lots of excitement ahead for us.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2018, 12:33:42 AM by Jharm »
When you can't run....you crawl...when you can't crawl...you find someone to carry you.

Offline Jharm

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Re: As the Cycle nears its end
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2018, 12:49:00 AM »
The roar of an engine screams across the area as a lone vehicle tears across the hilly terrain.   A lone figure rides a cycle-style vehicle across the land as a series of angry shouts resonate from behind her.

Why is it we always seem to find ourselves in situations such as this after you decide to go to a bar for a "simple drink"?

"Hey it's not my fault when they have dice or cards in the area and the other players are such sore losers!  I mean jeez....I lose a few hands and I shrug it off....they lose a few hands to a woman and they pull out their assorted weaponry."

Right...and you don't antagonize them at all....sure...

The woman gives a slight shrug as her cycle roars along even as a few bullets wizz past her. 

"Well I guess I gotta give them a little bit of credit...they are persistent at least."

Yes....persistent at wanting to put a bullet in you.

"Hey....we have traveled together long enough NONE of this should really surprise you....plus....I bet you enjoy some of it."

A brief bout of silence passes before a mental response finally occurs.

Certainly not....

The female chuckles and rolls her eyes as she slams her foot down on the gas pedal and her machine roars loudly as it speeds away from the pursuers.  In the distance a ship drops from above, its cargo bay opening up and a ramp dropping down.  In a series of precise motions the ship drops down at the precise moment the bike draws close enough so in the flash of an eye the woman and her mount are on board and suddenly the vessel is roaring off into the heavens.  The woman dismounts the bike and chuckles as she heads through the hallways.

"Luck of the draw my friend.  One of these days we will find them.  One of these days we will get some answers to these visions.  'Course in the meantime at least we do get these oh so enjoyable encounters at least."

The woman can almost hear a sigh within her mind before the verbal response.

"Enjoyable encounters....getting perforated by hot lead doesn't rank high on my enjoyable list."

"You know you like it though...."

"No comment....."
When you can't run....you crawl...when you can't crawl...you find someone to carry you.

Offline Jharm

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Re: As the Cycle nears its end
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2019, 06:59:11 AM »
Icy winds howl through the area, snow and ice as far as the eye can see.  The surrounding area shows signs of having been a large city at some point, tall buildings seeming to sprout from under the massive mounds of snow.   There are no signs of life however.  No voices ringing out, no sounds of traffic rolling through the vast metropolis streets....only the cold biting winds.  A short distance away, a lone feminine figure stands atop a snow mound.   Even as the arctic blast swirls around her, her garments barely shift, almost as if a bubble covers the area immediately around her.  Her gaze looks down on the ruins, to a spot that seems to also be impervious to the wintery winds.  Figures move back and forth, working their way into some of the buildings as large dozers and loaders work to excavating snow from entryways.  As time passes, some of the figures exit the buildings, hauling gurneys bearing frozen bodies.  They move to a central area where growing lines of bodies beings to form, each one reverently being covered by a sheet.  The woman gazes at the scene as she seems to talk to herself.

"So many lives lost.  I doubt we will ever be able to find all of them, or even fully identify all those that we do find.  The years pass and memories fade.

She lets out a sigh as her gaze seems to unfocus, as if she has drifted back into thoughts of the past.

"It was all so beautiful back then.  Towering buidings...sprawling cities...all so full and vibrant with life.  Now....now they are empty husks...with only ghosts to occupy them."

Dwelling on the past won't bring them back.  You, and your people, did everything possible to save as many as

"Perhaps.  That being said...doesn't change what happened."

Why do you choose to remain?  Your people have explored and settled on other planets.  You and the others could reside on any of those.

"When the frost came we could not escape the planet.  The storms and everything made travel off-planet, as well as communication, impossible.  Once we were able to escape...well...most had suffered so much to survive that leaving meant accepting defeat.  All the deaths and pain would be for nothing.  Then of course there was the fact that by that time many had become accustomed to this worlds new environment.  We had evolved to survive.  Moving to other worlds meant being faced with having to become acclimated to new environments.  That, and we could not leave those we lost."

Those are valid points I suppose.  You are still certain though aren't you?"

"Yes.  This....this was no cosmic "accident"....no...it was deliberate."

She thrusts her arms out, gesturing at the surrounding snow and buildings.

"Studies and data have proven that the rock that collided with this world was not some random asteroid that just happened to find its path lined up with us.  No...something....someone out there sent it at us.  Someone decided that for some reason my people had to be destroyed.  For the longest time we floundered at that.  None of the races of this universe have the ability to just up and manifest a gorram rock missile.  Then...I found you...and I learned of the Multi-verse.  With the information I've gained we further confirmed that the rock was not from here.  That means someone....someone out there in the Multi-verse made the CHOICE to massacre my people!"

As the woman finishes her sentence her fists clench tightly and suddenly the winds swirling through the area surge in around her.  Her dress swirls around her, the snow swirling up as an localized blizzard seems to manifest around her.  Then, just as fast as it appear...the blizzard died down and the "bubble" around her reforms.

"I....I will find whoever did it.  I will find them...and I will make them pay for what they have done.  I....I promised him that I would see our people avenged."

A single tear slides down her cheek, the drop of water turning into a single shard of ice the moment it slides off her face before it softly plinks off her boot.  She pulls a pocketwatch from one of the pockets of her dress and opens it up, gazing at the inside of the lid.

Well, as I have said before, I will do all that I can to help you in your mission.  Perhaps somewhere along the way we will also finally gain insight into why I was in that rune stone in the depths of your planet.

"Perhaps."


 
When you can't run....you crawl...when you can't crawl...you find someone to carry you.

Offline Jharm

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Re: As the Cycle nears its end
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2019, 11:41:32 PM »
As the woman watches over the workers going about their somber business her body suddenly tenses up before she slowly looks behind her.

"No...it can't be...."

In the distance is a veritable wall of snow, slowly moving towards her direction.  Without further hesitation she places a finger against her ear, activating a headset.

"Incoming frost surge!  Get inside and get those heaters burning NOW!"

Down at the work sight the people can be seen stopping whatever they are doing and scrambling into one of the buildings.  Inside they dash through hallways into the room furthest from the incoming storm.  A few lug along large metal boxes which they hurriedly place around the room and hit a few buttons.  Vents spring open as elements whithin flash and begin to glow bright orange.  Seconds later waves of heat surge from the boxes, almost turning the room into something akin to a sauna.  Frost clinging to the walls liquifies and turns to steam even as the people huddle amongst the heaters and hold on to each other.  A few soft sobs can be heard amongst the group as they seemingly seem to await what is to come.

Meanwhile, the woman outside began sprinting towards the site the moment after she sent the message.  Reaching the area in front of the building with the covered corpses lined up she throws her arms out wide.  A translucent bubble manifests around the area, covering the building the people are currently hiding in.  Turning she faces the incoming storm as she seems to brace herself.  The wall of snow and ice finally reaches the area, slamming into the bubble and causing the woman to visibly stumble back as the bubble briefly shimmers as the storm continues onward, enveloping the entire area....save for what is protected by the bubble.  The vehicles that were too far from the building are instantly covered in a layer of ice and even within the bubble the temperature noticeably drops.  The woman grunts as she seems to struggle to hold  back the storm.'

"N...no...I must not....fail."

Within the building the workers continue to huddle and hold on to each other.  The heaters thrum deeply as they pump waves of heat into the area.  Then, the engines within the boxes rev loudly as the sensors within detect the temperature dropping, the devices working even harder to try and maintain appropriate heat levels.  Even as the machines rev and groan with effort, the walls of the room seem to almost crystallize as the storm seems to seep further into the room.  As seconds tick by the crystallization seems to ever so slowly creep closer to the workers.  Some of them notice this and the group shifts as they work to try to huddle even closer to the center of the area between the heaters. 

The woman outside continues her struggle to seemingly hold back the frost surge.  Her arms quiver and shake as she fights against unseen forces.  THe bubble shimmers and pulses as the surge slams against it.  A moment later an audible cracking sound is heard as a visible jagged line appears on the bubble.

"N...no.  Please no...."

The woman gazes up at the crack even as she falls to one knee, still pushing against the outside forces.

Inside the room the crystallization continues it slow "march" closer to the huddled workers.  Soon, the frost is meer inches from the heaters.   Smoke begins to seep from within the heaters as the devices are pushed beyond their mechanical limits as they try to hold back the cold.

Another crack manifests on the bubble, and then another.  Each time the womans eyes gaze at the most recent visible sign of weakness.

"P..please no.  N...not this way.  Not now..."

======================================

"Sir,  at this point no more shuttles can safely leave the area without freezing from the storm.  As of now....we are trapped."

A stout man, clad in regalia befitting royalty nods and turns towards the speaker.

"Very well Major.  Thank you for the information.  Please, see to your concerns at this point."

The Major salutes but remains where he is.

"Thank you my King, but my...concerns have already safely evacuated off the planet.  I therefore choose to remain here."

The King pauses at the words and then nods.

"So be it...and thank you."

He then turns to another figure nearby.

"My daughter...you must leave now.  The surge will reach here soon and then...it will be too late."

The figure turns to the King. [It is "the woman"]

"No.  I can't leave you."

The King moves towards her briskly, placing a hand on her shoulder.

"You must.  We both know what is going to happen here soon.  Our people shall survive, but they will need leaders to help them.  Many have either already fallen to the frost...or have chosen to remain here to give their evac places to others.  While many have chosen to sacrifice themselves for the people...others have chosen the opposite.  You must be there to protect our people from those who would use all of this to gain power for their own ends."

The woman places a hand on top of the one resting on her shoulder.

"Then you should go.  You are already their King."

The King gazes down at the floor as he pulls his hand back.

"No.  I am growing old.  Even if all of this had not happened...my rule is waning.  You however...you have many years still ahead of you.  Besides, we both know that something has happened to you recently.  That stone you found has changed you....empowered you in ways we can not even fully understand yet.  No...my time is at an end and you MUST carry on."

"I dont wan't to leave you Father....I....."

He places a single finger against her lips, silencing her words.

"I know.  I don't want to see you leave.  There is no choice though now.  The transporter can only send one person.  Use it...please.  There is no more time."

She gazes up at the King, tears welling in her eyes before suddenly dashing forward and wrapping her arms around him in a tight hug, sobbing into his chest.  He softly places a hand on her back and pats softly.

"You must be strong my beautiful Snowflake.  Our people will need you."

After a brief moment she finally releases her grip and steps back.  The King smiles down at her and brushes a tear off her cheek with his thumb.

"I know you will take good care of them.  All that I ask is...that should you some day find those responsible for this...that you grant justice for our people."

She smiles up at the King as she places her hand over his as it brushes along her cheek.

"I promise you Father.  I will find them...and justice will be granted for our people."

"Thank you my daughter.  I am so proud of you...and I love you.  Never forget that.  Now please...go.  There is no more time."

With one last glance she turns and dashes away.  As soon as she is out of the area the King turns and walks over to a large throne and sits down in it, the Major moving to stand next to him as they face towards the doorway of the chamber.  A moment later the King finally speaks

"Farewell my friend.  We shall meet again, beyond the rim."

The Major nods.

"Of course my King.  It has been an honor to serve you."

Even as they speak the area before them suddenly begins to crystallize, the effect rushing towards them.  Just as the Major finishes speaking the crystallization reaches them.  In a flash both of them freeze over.

=============================
The woman is almost down on her knees as the bubble cracks and shimmers under the strain against it. 

You have failed us!  We shall never see justice now!  You have let us all down!

"I....I'm sorry.  I....I tried...."

Then, with a final whimper of effort....the bubble fails.  The frost surges through the area.  After a while the storm passes on.  Within the building the room where the workers huddled is completely frosted over.  Their bodies are huddled in the center, the heaters now looking more like ice cubes.  Out in front of the building a single frosted-over figure kneels, her gaze looking up towards the sky in a mixture of sadness and fear.

==================
"NOOOOOO!!"

The woman sits straight up.  Her eyes are wide, filled with panic and terror as her entire body shakes and shivers.  She looks around the room, realizing after a few moments where she is and that it was all just a dream.  She works to steady her erratic breathing, gripping the edges of her bed tightly.

"Gorram it all."

With an exasperated sigh she swings her legs over the edge of the bed and stands up.  Reaching out she lifts a robe from a nearby hook.  She slips it around her, the fabric shimmering and flowing around her curves even as she moves towards the ladder leading out of her room.  Climbing up she reaches what looks to be the hallway of a ship.  Turning to her right she heads towards and up some stairs and into what seems to be the bridge of a space ship.  Numerous monitors and assorted equipment line the walls, with two stations in the center of the room looking to be where the pilots would sit, one of the seats is currently occupied.  She continues to move forward until she is standing next to the pilot station and gazes out the large viewport.  Without averting her gaze she finally speaks.

"Please, leave me."

The figure nods and exits the room.  She moves over and sits down in the seat.  She raises a hand and with a simple gesture a bottle suddenly appears in her grasp.  It is a large glass bottle containing a semi-translucent blue liquid with a label on the front bearing a large snowflake and the word "Frostbolt" on the front.  With a gesture of her other hand she manifests a shot glass.  Filling it with the blue liquid she sets the bottle down on the console as she takes a deep breath.  Her gaze remains focused outside the viewport as she continues holding the filled shotglass.  Off to her side a ghostly figure winks into existance. 

"It was that bad?"

"They always are.  Though yes...this time was a particularly bad one.  It was a nightmare...within a nightmare.  My final moments with my father, and then a frost surge killing me and others."

She downs the shot and refills the glass.

"I miss him so much."

"From what you have told me, you had no real choice to do anything else."

The woman downs the second shot and places the empty glass next to the  bottle.

"That might be true...but it doesn't do much to ease the pain.  No...only justice for him and the rest of my people might ever truly end it.  Justice WILL be theirs some day.  I promised him that...and I intend to keep that promise."

 
When you can't run....you crawl...when you can't crawl...you find someone to carry you.