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1
Sionad Tundra and Valleys / Re: Aurora's Snowflake {Private}
« Last post by SilverDragonsBlood on Today at 10:35:24 PM »
Tak'karan was slightly put off by the dragon's refusal of his handshake, but he had come across personalities of all kinds so he didn't really take it personally. Taiga appreciated the new information, but her pride was a little hurt. She also didn't appreciate that she had sacrificed her staff for the dragon when she didn't have to. Still, that new one was pretty cool.

Abri closed his eyes briefly, feeling the energies from his siblings. He reopened them with a slight smirk. "She is in the Draconi Forest currently," he said with a slight chuckle. Abri rubbed the back of his neck. "She's having a conversation with a flower bush at the moment, so my advice is to wait until they're finished. Padi isn't the warmest person to approach, and she'll like you even less if you interrupt an exchange with a floral friend."

Tak'karan and Taiga smirked at each other, thinking about Padi's feisty attitude. Aetroskos was definitely in for a treat. "Thanks," the girl said with a shrug. "I'm sorry for any trouble."

"I don't believe we're needed here any longer," Tak'karan said. He kissed Taiga's forehead, then bowed his head to the dragon, before walking off and disappearing into the snowy weather. Abri hugged his sister and smiled at the dragons, then followed Tak'karan.
2
The Meeting Place / Re: The Traveler [OPEN]
« Last post by Morgan Droud on Today at 10:12:55 PM »
"Well, not really..."

It felt strange to her, the current state of things. There was a sense of emptiness, like she was missing something.

"I'm just not entirely sure what I'm doing here. I thought, maybe you had seen me arrive, since I can't remember."
3
Hyoite / Re: A Tale of Two Sisters (Open, just hop in)
« Last post by AlmighyXcavus on Today at 09:17:16 PM »
Sathurra started to laugh at Tikaani's awkwardness: "You wanna know something? You remind me a lot of my sister Zaikaria. Don't worry about your home, the tundra is mine so anything apart of it, is apart of me."

Sathurra sat on the bed and gently lifted the little pup into her lap. Stroking the tiny creature as if it were one of her own. She sighed for a moment and looked back up to Tikaani. "Come sit, it's your home after all, no need to worry."


4
"Hakan's right. Dark hun, what has gotten into you this time? Come with me because you are not ripping anyone apart when we literally have some free time to relax after being on the ship for two damn months. Come with me." Kara motioned Dark to follow her over to the local market. "And if you don't come I'm going to knock you out again." She said jokingly with a smile.

Kiron was fascinated with the ritual that Taiga and Oti were performing. He was just sitting there and so was sh... Kiron had fallen asleep within the first 5 minutes or so of watching the ritual. At this point it would take a miracle to wake him up.
5
Yoreiq / Re: The Hunt begins (Xcavus)
« Last post by AlmighyXcavus on Today at 09:02:23 PM »
SLIIIICE...

The early hours of the morning were not an issue for Ravathos's hunger for a good hunt. Thankfully for him, the more exotic the animal was, the better tasting meat he had the privilege to eat. "Hmm, a bit on the rough side today. Must be growing accustomed to the hunts. What a pity." Ravathos smirked as he sliced the rainbow deer's neck and ate it's meat raw. He always preferred a cooked meal, but today he was just not in the mood to walk the way back to his hut.

After placing the rest of the animal's body on his bone spike which rested on his pauldron, he walked with a slightly harder step than usual back to his hut near the labyrinth. The sun arose and shined brilliantly onto his abode of bone trophies. After placing the deer's body on a rotisserie mechanism to cook for the day, he set out for the ocean, he seemed to be in a fishy mood. Grabbing his bone spear he made his way down the isle. Although he was the physical embodiment of a true hunter that struck fear into his victims, he always had a soft spot for the view of the main island every morning. One day he would hope to take his future lover and children to this spot, but that was a thought for another day.

The water was especially clear today. Fishing was quite relaxing for Ravathos, he managed to get four fish with one hit right after another. When he looked across the ocean to the main isle he saw a group of children. They entered into the water with childish intents, it made Ravathos smile... for a moment.

At this point Ravathos was chest deep in the water. He felt a shift within the water, he looked over to the children once more focusing intensely on them. Then...

ROOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAARRRR

Ravathos smirked then climbed back to a solid portion of the isle he was on. He backed about a hundred paces before leaping off with so much force he caved in the rock he leapt off of. To any mortal this jump would've been a feat of a god of some sort. For Ravathos this was mere child's play. He landed on a small isle before repeating the process once more. He made it to the main island within mere seconds.

He scanned the ground: "Bones... typical. This one wants to be found I see."

 Children, this one must have quite the taste then. Probably weak as well if it's praying on innocents. Ravathos grinned from ear to ear before shouting at the top of his lungs

"THE HUNT HAS BEGUN!" 
6
Excalith chuckled: "You ask like as if I wasn't prepared for this at all!" Excalith yanked Julianna into the lake with him. Swimming as fast as he could to find the entrance. The lake seemed to go on forever, souls could be seen fighting nearby. Some tried to attack the duo but Excalith easily slapped them away.

THERE IT IS! Excalith saw it, the portal to the next level. The one to finally end this crazy life that he has brought himself into. He swam faster and faster until...

PLOP!

The two dropped down to the eight level, Excalith regained his balance before Julianna popped through. They had gotten separated at some point. Excalith easily caught her and placed her feet first on the ground, wiping some blood off her face. He smiled "How was your swim?"
7
Sionad Tundra and Valleys / Re: Aurora's Snowflake {Private}
« Last post by AlmighyXcavus on Today at 08:30:57 PM »
Aetroskos waved his hand with a smile towards Tak'Karan. "No need, this was my family's fault I take blame for my sister's actions thus I cannot accept your handshake. Also, Taiga make sure you don't go blindly throwing your staff to save this idiot from what she deserves again. She can't even die in the tundra, thus I don't mean to undermine your efforts, it was practically useless. Please understand that is not an insult in the slightest, just a mere exchange of information."

Aetroskos looked towards Abri with a slightly stern look. "Thank you Abri, but I fear what may be happening to my forest is beyond your sibling's control as well. I cannot confirm this as of the moment, but I will contact her first. May I ask? You elementals are telepathic beings are you not? Thus we guardians should be able to communicate with you fairly easily correct? If so, where is Padauk currently so that I may speak with her?"

Sathurra stood in a slight grief-stricken state. She truly cared for the tundra, but her love for her home did cloud her mind too much sometimes.
8
Essyrn / Zaikaria, Feathered Dragon of the south
« Last post by AlmighyXcavus on Today at 06:27:51 PM »
ZaiKaria, Feathered Dragon of the south

Humanoid form:

artist unknown
Dragon Form:

artist unkown

Age: 4000
Height (on hind legs): 20 m
Length(including tail): 40 m
weight: 17000 lbs
eye color: Bright and illustrious Red
Gender: female
Species: Dragon
Occupation: Guardian, Watcher of the Desert/South
Residence: Essyrn
Ethinicity: Draconi Forest
Relation ship status: single

Backstory:
        Zaikairia along with her other four dragon siblings, was born of stardust. Her purpose was to guard and watch over the land known as Essyrn particularly the desert. From a young age she had always had luck on her side. She was raised by a human family that lived underneath the sand. Learning to feed off the creatures that dared to scour the desert. She acquired her humanoid form right from the beginning. The family perceived her arrival as a blessing of the old gods for the mother could not bear children.

        Her life was fairly pampered but she was always humble. After outliving her family, she made home with a king who took her in as his wife after a year. He was respectful and gracious to her no matter the circumstance. She was always kind to her servants and made sure each of them got there respected time off for their excellent service. On the day of her marriage to the king, she was gifted a necklace, arm bracers, and a tiara with wings protruding where her ears would be, all made of pure enchanted gold. Each piece of jewelry had a bright red ruby inside, but the piece Zaikaria treasured the most was her enchanted unbreakable sapphire. She had personally requested the mages inscribe the sapphire to her body to be apart of her for as long as she lived.

        Her king died a happy death, with no regrets and a heartwarming love from his people. Zaikaria naturally was next in line to rule since they had breeded no heir. Needless to say, her ruling experience was quite immature. She was too kind, but to her people she was a gracious and beautiful ruler.

After 2000 years her empire had faded out of existence. She had only revealed her dragon form in true times of need from natural disasters. Other than her people, no one knows of her dragon form now. She tends to hide it in the fear of driving people away. Currently she roams underneath the desert and visiting the locals in her human form when she likes to socialize.   

Appearance:
     Human form- Zaikaria is blond with bright red eyes. She has a slim build with desirable curves. Her sapphire sits at the very center of her forehead just before touching her hair which she always keeps in a ponytail, unless she's sleeping in her human form. She stands at 6 ft tall and weighs in at about 170lbs

Dragon form-
     Zaikaria is the only feathered dragon of the family, the feathers range from dull to vibrant white, golden yellow, and green on the underwing. She bears no horns but a mane of feathers crests out just before her neck. Her sapphire is the only piece of jewelry that is still visible in her dragon form. The golden tint of her underbelly and her feathers come from the other pieces of jewelry meshing with her body
 
Personality:
        Zaikaria is a humble being with a little immaturity tied in. Her whole life she had practically been giving everything she could ever ask for. She is gracious in her step and her speech. She loves to have fun and do whatever she wants to do. She adores dancing and learning about people's pasts. She will do whatever she can to help any problem you have. She might not get it done properly, but she'll do her best. Taking her on an adventure is the absolute best way to get to know her.
Spoiler: show
Although she likes to dance and learn about people, her initial encounter with anyone new to her will be that of shyness and awkwardness. The best way to break her out of her shell is to invite her somewhere.
 

Abilities:
Shapeshift-touch-
        When encountering a new species she can become her own iteration of that species by touching it.
Spoiler: show
Although she prefers to shift mainly between her human and dragon form.

Instant-Speech-
        In order to communicate effectively and learn the different languages of humanoids, Zaikaria must kiss a member of that species and she will learn every aspect of the language they speak.
Desert storm-
        Zaikaria can summon and envelop herself in a sandstorm no matter what form she's in.
Sand shift-
        She uses sand to phase herself to dodge attacks.
Sand clone(s)-
        She can summon sand clones of herself or of the soldiers she ruled either to protect herself or her comrades. The clones will take shape of whatever form she is in currently.
(Ex. She casted it in dragon form then swapped to human, the clones would also swap to human.) They only last for a minute at best, and she can only have a maximum of 10 clones/soldiers out at one time.



Spoiler: show
Guardians cannot be killed within the area they protect. Unless it is by a force destined to overcome them and take over as the new guardian. For Zaikaria this is the desert.
9
The Colosseum / Make it RAIN...blood. |: [Aeyt!] [M]
« Last post by Aeytrious on Today at 06:09:28 PM »
        Executions were one of Vegters favorite events. Massively outnumbered by criminals wearing rags and given subpar weapons. They were promised a new life as a gladiator if the could survive. Of course that meant that they'd have to kill the contenders that had been chosen to kill them, and kill any other poor fools that had survived as well. There could only be one. It was a rare thing for a new arena fighter to be chosen this way.
         Vegter wasted no time on thought or hesitation. He pulled the twin axes from his back and raised them both in salute to his adoring fans. The beautiful weapons were fashioned like side-handle batons with axe heads sprouting from the business end of the weapons. Vegter spun them about, twisting and flipping them across his hands, around his wrists and forearms. His stride did not break as he dashed at the closest group of criminals. The criminals headed toward Vegter paused at the gladiators eagerness. Those that were cowering and not moving forward began to run away when they heard his gleeful laughter.
        The largest of the cattle was only put off for a moment but then he moved to the front of his group and got ready for Vegter’s assault. He held a large rusted sword in two hands, and looking part ogre, was nearly 8’ tall. A strong, unexpected heave of Vegters arm, propelled one of his axes through the air so fast everyone was surprised when it wedged directly into the behemoths face. Long loping strides brought Vegter to the giant of a man before he could begin to topple. He ran straight up him like wall, pulling the axe from his face and leaping off his shoulders. He sailed over the other criminals that were standing ready to fight and ran straight for those that were fleeing. Vegter delighted in the carnage, cutting them down as his fleet feet carried him past. Again and again he threw his axes forward ripping them from corpses as he dashed forward killing over and over. Their fear was delightful and the cheers of the crowd were delicious.
10
Wanderers and Independents / Mia Valentine, Lady of the Shadows
« Last post by PastelCurlies on Today at 05:26:15 PM »
QUICK STATS
Name: Mia Valentine
Age: 284 (Died at the age of 28 and has kept that appearance for 256 years.)
Gender: Female
Species: Undead Human

Height: 5'6"

Research Notes

Physical Description
Mia Valentine was not considered too attractive whilst growing up due to her boisterous nature. Though she quickly learnt the benefits of charm and grace in society and utilised these 'masks' of behaviour to soon become a well known (and long sought after) member of society. It was then that her beauty was truly appreciated as she began to wear her soft, glossy, jet-black hair long and wavy; her choice in clothing became more feminine with long dresses, often in black or shades of dark red or purple to compliment her pale complexion. It is unknown what colour her eyes were as accounts seem to contradict one another. But now they are unmistakably violet.
Her slender frame, often accentuated by her clothing can cause many to underestimate her strength, and though once an attractive, but seemingly unremarkable girl; it has been said that she now takes great pride in a large, beautiful, black set of feathered wings emerging from her back.

Personality
From years of growing up in a discriminatory and bigoted society, Mia learnt exactly how to act to fit in. This has caused the few accounts of her that still remain to describe her as graceful and charming, though one will never find any mention of her being vulnerable. In truth, she never changed from that ferocious little girl she once was, and simply adopted personalities and behaviours that allowed her to fit in with society; and what's more, keep any enemies she may make at a great disadvantage. This adaptability was made greatly effective by her natural keen sense of perception she had developed at an early age. Picking up on slight emotive tells and personality traits exhibited in the people around her has given her an invaluable strength in manipulation and seduction.
As charming and as understanding as she may seem, it is highly probable that you are exactly where she wants you.

Magic/Abilities
Training in combat and physique, Mia has above average strength that can catch many off-guard due to her hiding it fairly well. She has also made a point of training herself in a fair range of weapons and combat techniques, nothing to compare to a true warrior or barbarian, but enough to allow her to take on most lesser foes one-on-one.
Her true power however, lies in her magical abilities. Taking an interest in magic around the same time she started roaming the world in search for adventure, she focused on developing and strengthening her natural abilities of manipulation and close-quarters combat through magic. At first learning spells, incantations and curses, she proved an effective foe for any monster, mercenary or malicious being she came up against, soon getting into the habit of keeping one or two lesser beings as pets.
That was long ago however, and her power has grown far greater now. Necromancy and spirit-magic is her forte and she is often depicted as having an entourage of skeletal and ghoulish beings. It is commonly told that she mostly uses these undead minions to dispatch of enemies she finds aren't worth her time, but on the rare occasion a worthy opponent makes their way to her, she takes great delight in the opportunity to use her full power. Miss Valentine's abilities have never been truly compiled due mostly to her isolation, but also due to the fact that those who have faced her in the past have not often made it back alive. However, a list has been compiled below of the few things that have been recorded, along with some speculation and theory.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Enforced Natural Abilities
  • Magically enforced strength
  • Magically enforced agility

Necromancy/Soul-Magic
  • Reanimation of the dead (as well as depictions of life such as statues and paintings?)
  • Soul absorption (allowing her to boost her power with the souls of the recently deceased)
  • The ability to view one's past misdeeds and sins by the blackness of their soul
  • Summoning specters, ghouls and other denizens of the underworld
  • Transporting herself and others to the underworld (Though it is speculated this could be an illusion or some other mind-trickery)

Illusion and Mind-Manipulation
  • Shapeshifting (There is little doubt as to the claims of Miss Valentine changing her shape, though it is unclear as to what limits this can be achieved. Some... lesser well known theorists believe that she exists in modern society, walking our streets and maybe even infiltrating areas of authority. Though it should be said that no evidence of such behaviour has ever been offered, and what's more it goes against the conclusions of those who study her personality and behaviour.)
  • Matter transformation
  • Time travel (This has been debunked following research into her afterlife (see below))
  • Single or mass hallucination (Being able to control then senses of one or more living creatures)

Demonic/Ethereal Abilities
(It must be stressed that these abilities are mostly acquired from unreliable sources and speculation. It should also be remembered that Miss Valentine's strength in illusion can cause her victims to believe whatever she wishes and so it would not be improbable for her to spread word that she is in fact more powerful than she truly is.)
  • Communication with the Underworld (there are accounts of her speaking to, and even fraternising with Demons of incredible power)
  • Immortality (This is simply impossible to judge without much further inquisition.)
  • Corruption

This is the current compilation of Miss Valentine's abilities though further research and analysis should allow us to confirm or deny many of these rumours in our next volume on the Shadow Empress.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Relationships
It is known that, when mortal, Mia was engaged to be wed to a Count of substantial wealth and power. However a name has not yet been uncovered, and what is stranger is that in research into any known Counts, Lords, Barons, and Dukes from that time, her name is never mentioned.

It is doubtless that in knowledge of her charm and seductive abilities, she will have made plenty of 'beneficial' relationships over her lifetime.

A theory put forth by Zabya (R.A. Demons and their Followers) suggests that upon arriving in the underworld Miss Valentine not only managed to keep herself from divine judgement, but actually managed to "seduce a demon" and eventually lead him to his demise, taking his place in the demonic Hierarchy. This is highly unusual and there is no account of any other doing the same, though the theory does manage to explain some of the as-yet unresolved contradictions in her reported history.

History
Below is a total compilation of the few accounts of Mia Valentine's life with preference to the more feasible theories.

"As I left I thought I heard the cry of a human child, and on closer inspection found a small girl lying naked in the alleyway behind the tavern. She was caked in mud and leaves and taking shelter from the rain under a few misplaced wooden boards. That was when I was attacked by the three men with knives and broken bottles. I was forced to flee for my life, and when I returned the following morning, the babe was gone." (Mr Hurnborg's revised testimony in the trial of D. Casey, F. Lawrence and M. Mulborough)

"What happened to their child? I only ask because no-one has mentioned him since.
[...]
The one they found? Blue eyes, I think he had, and short dark hair.
[...]
I distinctly remember because he refused to speak to me, even when I offered him a sweetmeat." (Conversation recorded between J. Barrimore and an unknown companion (in regards to the death of two servants on the Battlebury Estate) as part of a reconnaissance ordered by Spymaster Hicks during the time of the Battlebury Murders. It has been concluded that said child was staying under their protection from out-of-town and returned home just before the deaths. However this conclusion is objectively dismissive with no investigation or research being done beforehand. This account can be argued as an early reference to Miss Valentine when coupled with the extract below from 'That Fateful Day' song written by Killian de Marq)

"When they came to stop the blaze,
it surely was too late
For all t'was left from hearts bereft,
a child standing at the gate
[...]
Sapphire eyes were streaming tears,
but really who's to say
that ruffled hair and such despair
could curse that fateful day" (Extract from the controversial 'That Fateful Day' song written by Killian de Marq. Supposedly De Marq knew of a child staying at the Battlebury Estate at the time of the murders but was discredited and his reputation permanently damaged. If the child de Marq claims to have known about was the very same as mentioned by Barrimore, a young boy was staying at the Battlebury Estate for a number of months and was supposedly there on the night of the fire that engulfed the house. My research has lead me to believe that this boy is in fact a young Mia Valentine due to early accounts of her having a 'boyish' appearance and multiple sources claiming to have seen instances of the Snake and Raven motif when venturing inside Miss Valentine's fabled Court of Bones. The same motif once part of the Battlebury family crest.)

"Hard worker, quiet, keeps to himself. Works for food and shelter." (A reference for a stableboy on behalf of the Garoqq'k farm. The stable-boy in question was described with a very similar appearance to the missing child from the Battlebury Estate, and what's more is said to be around the age of 7 or 8 years old, fitting in perfectly with the timeline between the first account and the time the stable-boy first came to work for the Garoqq'k family. This leads me to believe that Miss Valentine posed as a boy in a way to keep her anonymity and work on her physique doing manual labour. The time alone also would have allowed for her to learn about a range of weaponry as the Garoqq'k farm was famously used as a barracks for soldiers during several battles at the time.)

Several years later there are more solid accounts of Miss Valentine as she began to shed the guise of a boy and interact more with the locals, especially those in higher society.

"I remember he [Sir Callum Ju'fre] said to me: 'Ozzy, I've met this wonderful girl! She's incredible! I've never met a woman with such ferocity!' he went on and on about this girl and even mentioned proposing at one point though I know his father would have never allowed it. The funny thing was, he would mention time and time again how he loved her eyes as they were hazel just like his mother's. And yet when I finally came to meet her, I could swear they were bright blue." (M. Loughbreaker, personal servant to Sir Callum Ju'fre during an interview with K. Machersfield, author of 'The Life and Times of Ju'fre: a History of our Beloved Duke')

It is around this time that Miss Valentine established herself in society, making an impression on many wealthy or otherwise powerful characters. There are several accounts of a young lady working at the tavern in a nearby area that would often flirt with and charm the generals, landlords, and nobility. It was also found out later that several well-respected personalities had been paying for... 'special' services at said tavern, though at that point Miss Valentine had not been seen for several weeks.

Accounts of a girl matching Miss Valentine's description occur from all over and when arranged chronologically, one can notice that the said girl would be more and more wealthy. One can only assume Mia had been taking advantage of her skills of seduction to grow in wealth and power, and yet not stay anywhere too long to get caught.

Several years later at what must be her early 20's, she turns up again. This time coming directly to Lord Theoline with the head of the beast that had been terrorizing their kingdom. And for the first time, we get a name. "The hero went by the name Valentine, and assured us that if a situation were to arise where we would require her assistance, it would already be taken care of." (From the pages of Lord Theoline Huford's personal diary, graciously borrowed from the Chapel of St Korinth)
Now we have Miss Valentine by name, and so our accounts get more and more legitimate. However for the next 5 years we can only assume she travelled the lands searching for adventure. Multiple accounts of a 'Valentine' show up, usually slaying beasts or preventing disasters and only showing her face for the reward. Somehow she'd find out about these terrors and turn up at the corresponding city or village without any pretext. Obviously news spread of this hero and people all over began to feel safer knowing that whatever great disaster would befall them, they need not even call for help.

"I remember my mother tucking me in every night, telling me stories of the great Valentine. I loved those stories and believed every one! It wasn't until I was older of course that I realised no-one really knew the truth, and that most of those tales had been made up on the spot to get me to go to sleep. I never lost hope though. In fact I tell my children the same stories. The hero that senses danger. It's a good story for children. Helps them feel safe when they go to sleep." (Chrosstopher Brink in an interview with Brian Callesee, author of 'Valentine, Truth or Fiction?')

However it was not long before people realised that this godsend may be slaying the dragons and the ogres... But was never there when no reward offered itself, never there when the villain was to be captured alive. Furthermore, it is clear from the chronology of these events to see that Valentine was hungering for bigger and badder foes. What started with trolls and bandits, soon became dragons and mountain giants, and before long it would take a great awesome beast threatening an entire kingdom before Valentine appeared. This leads me to assume that she was thirsting for a challenge, a trait that has been recurring throughout these stories. More recent accounts often depict her using minions and traps to slay her foes, only making a personal appearance when the enemy has proven themselves worthy.
"It is a terrible curse to have great power such as this, as one bores so easily." (Line from 'Valentine', a play by St Edgar Followsworth)

Now our accounts get more interesting. The hero known as Valentine had not dealt with 'lesser' problems in a long while and as such had not been heard from in around 18 months. It was around the time the warlock Zephir had opened a gate to Hell and unleashed demonic creatures all over the kingdom. This was the caliber of challenge Valentine was looking for, and after the fateful Flesh Harvest, the warlock mysteriously disappeared, his bones being found decades later. The stampede of hellspawn subsided almost as suddenly as it had appeared, and peace was brought back to the citizens. Though this time there was no Valentine to claim the reward, and no accounts of her for another several years.
The explorer that ventured into Scarlet Hollow and found the bones of Zephir also returned with another body. Charred bones still encased by the armor were all that was left of the hero Valentine. In respect to her, they buried her in the Retunant Cemetery with a grand and ornate headstone, even erecting a statue of her within the temple itself made from the melted down armour that had once been her final resting place. The explorer gained some local fame for a time and realising the hero didn't have a first name, decided on Mia after his recently miscarried daughter. Thus the headstone read 'Mia Valentine: a hero to some, a folktale to others, a saviour to all.'

From this point on it is assumed that Valentine's time in the afterlife was incredibly invaluable to improving her powers as the comparison between what was heard from those dates 250 years ago and what is being told now is vast. One account from a Mr Gurbasch Vellowsworn seems to include great detail on these events, though not much is to be said about his credibility. Nonetheless it is better than pure guesswork and so has made it's way into my research.

"[...] After saying our goodbyes to poor Mavek and vowing to bring him back to be buried a hero upon our return, we made our way through the halls and into the antechamber with the throne room just beyond. I remember Jovil joked about how he would send his husband here for a vacation if he ever got out of hand. We laughed from nerves, our breath crystallizing in the air.
[...]
Once our preparations were complete and we were ready to meet our fates, Iona and I set the charges to blow open the great stone door. The noise echoed off the walls threatening to knock us over and chills covered my body as I felt crumbling bone fall from the ceiling. We charged in and found the hall empty apart from a great throne made of bones and skulls of what I was sure were the adventurers that had come before us. In this throne sat a beautiful woman. Ebony hair flowing down over her shoulders, legs crossed, and an ornate and spine-freezing scythe at her side. She smiled in a way that almost made me relieved, like when you're a child and you don't know if your mother will scold you or not. It was this beautiful smile, comforting and yet slightly off-putting. Jovil instantly began to charge at her. He was so bold, so noble he would not have fallen for her charm. I think she knew that. I think she knew exactly what would and what wouldn't work on all of us. He stopped before he got to her, looking around and telling us to stay back as he thrashed his sword around madly in the air. I thought he'd gone mad. She began to laugh, a pleasant laugh like someone had told a charming anecdote. Such an innocent sound for such a horrifying sight. As I started to run in to help him, Iona grabbed me and pulled me back. She had grabbed some explosives from her pack and wanted to catch the devil-woman off-guard while she was distracted by Jovil. I cloaked her with Mavek's invisibility ring and she crept around the room toward the throne. The creature slowly stopped laughing and sighed, turning her head away from where Iona currently stood. I watched in horror as the ring fell to the floor, and before I could do anything Iona had swallowed the small explosives. All I could do was close my eyes as I heard a deafening bang. When I finally had the courage to open them again, she was standing in front of me, her face inches away from my own. I turned to run but the door was nowhere to be found. She grabbed my jacket and great black wings stretched out from her back. She suddenly pulled me high into the air, my head almost touching the ceiling of the great room. And that's when she spoke to me. She told me about herself. That she was bored, and lonely, and that she was so grateful I'd come. She told me all about how she used to be an adventurer like me until she met her fate while trying to close a portal to hell. She'd been there, her soul weighed and somehow she managed to avoid judgement. She told me about how she fearlessly fought through hell, and how the demons had laughed at her ferocity. One took a shine to her. A demon offered her immortality if she agreed to offer her body as a vessel for it to roam the living world once more. At this point I was terrified and begging for mercy, thinking I was truly face to face with a demon incarnate. After some silence I managed to ask her if she truly was a demon. Her reply is something that haunts me more than anything else I saw that day: No. I'm much worse.
[...]
I ran back through the maze of hallways and rooms and straight back to our town without looking back. For she told me I could live if I returned home and spread word of her. She said... she said she has been craving some proper entertainment.
[...]
Well I have spent so long trying to forget, I'm sorry if I miss out any details, but yes. She spoke of her time in the afterlife as if it were a time of great personal development. She said instead of accepting the demon's offer, she managed to become it's 'pet' and over time start manipulating it's actions until she finally sent it to it's demise and took it's place! She reigned in hell alongside real creatures of torment, fallen gods and demons alike treated her as equal. She had taken the demon's powers and eventually used them to return to the mortal world that she missed so much."

If this account is to be believed, then a truly frightening creature exists in our realm and must be stopped. However, though the same Court of Bones is mentioned in several other accounts, no such place has been discovered, and when asked to help guide an expedition back to the fabled location, no survivors have been able to find it.
The greatest nail in the coffin is the irony that the one who would have once been counted on to save us from such evil is the very evil we are facing.

To confirm these earlier events, along with the account by Mr Vellowsworn, I personally attended an excavation in Newbark town, near the dormant Mt Frecia where the supposed resting place of the great Valentine existed. I must say I was truly not expecting what we found. A chasm was waiting for us just outside the town, the earth inviting our dig as an Angler invites its prey into it's awaiting maw. When we eventually began to uncover the remains of the old town, frozen in ash from the volcano, an icy grasp gripped my body. At the center of the dig, right in the eye of the chasm, was an ornate tombstone with what I could barely make out as: 'Valentine: ro   s  e'

From my findings it is clear that this creature is extremely dangerous and if we wish to be safe, we must not make the mistake others did before us. We must not underestimate her. We must fight.


These notes have been recovered from an unpublished research paper by scholar Magnus T. Schmitt during an expedition to an abandoned kingdom.


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