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 Ch 11 - Shattered

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Zack
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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Sat Feb 21, 2015 8:22 pm



Dietrich laughed aloud at the roars of the beast as it felt the pain in its back as Dietrich heft the axe as she shouted for him to keep his eyes looking up he found the monster wanted his it seemed as the purple smoke rose he went wide eyed it wasn't fear but the calculating look of how to escape he gritted his teeth as the bile came he turned his back the monsters laughter as the bile splashed across his back he tore at the shirt peeling it off his back before it melted to his very skin feeling the sickly burning sensation on his back the rot rushed to stem any bleeding and hold some of the pain back he turned his whole body covered in the dark symbols of rot.

"That was a cheaper blow than your first." Chuckling as he stepped forward swinging the unglyphed axe it did just bounce off the skin but the resounding sound from him told him it wasn't the axe complaining it was overjoyed as it sung to him. His body however was complaining he could still hear the sizzling at his back this confounded acid and fire was burning he could see his shirt burning and melting at the same time in the corner of his eye. This was not such an entertaining death as he grinned to not show his pain.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 1:07 pm


Angazhan showed a toothy grin as the rot worked and he spoke, "I knew I smelled Rot on you... well let's see how you handle this."

He waved his hand across the ground, swiping away at the leaves to show bare ground. He thrust his fingers into the dirt and the black in his fingernails drained out into the exposed soil. A massive rumbling shook the forest floor, knocking everyone to their feet. A large creature, swirled with the black, inky substance of rot and rapidly molding organic matter burst up form the ground, then split into seven creatures, each a 1/7th size of the original (about 3 meters tall each).


The seven creatures hissed in unison, four of them heading straight towards Dietrich, the other three heading to the Wizards and Carla. Angazhan himself turned to Lilly and began to charge as he snarled, "You dare to attempt and affix the binding on me! Now you will die!"

His enormous hand came up over his head, still dripping with rot, and came down in a wide arc to cleave the Irish woman in two.



The three creatures of Rot shot at the wizards and Carla, their glowing white eyes leaving streaks in the air around them. Kimiko lifted her hands and hissed words of magic, "ARTALATHA YANG'LI FARSTALOSTA!"

A containment sphere erupted from her palms and smashed into the creatures, they exploded into a glob as the golden sphere wrapped around them, and then they reformed almost instantaneously, clawing at the inside of the sphere. A golden beam of light, like a tether of light was connected to the sphere and she grit her teeth as she did her best to maintain the connection. She spoke softly, "Elizabeth.... they are strong... the strongest darkness I have ever felt... I...," her head dropped, but almost immediately she brought it back up and grit her teeth, a flare of golden light erupted and smashed into the sphere through the tether, and the creatures exploded, only to reform again. Then the three creatures showed their intelligence and spun together like an inky shadow, attacking the place where the tether was connected to the sphere like a pin prick. Kimiko gasped and the flow of darkness began to slowly creep up the band of light.

Elizabeth snarled angrily and stepped forward, her hands moved in wide arches and she screamed magical words, an explosion of light right where the shadow met the light erupted like a bomb and dissipated the beam, the shadows, and knocked herself, Kimiko and Carla to the ground.

There was horrific screaming and the shadows seemed to burn away, only to begin reforming once again. Quickly Elizabeth removed a small vile of glowing blue liquid and threw it to Kimiko, "DRINK IT!"

She then turned to Carla, checking to make sure the young human was alright before the Rot creatures reformed enough to attack again.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 1:28 pm





Ean looked into Aurora's eyes as she turned to face him, his hand still gently on her shoulder, "No Aurora, they have their fight, we have ours."

She looked back as another sound of magic exploded in the distance and he spoke, "Elizabeth and Lexy are capable, and with Carla they are a strong unit! Worry not!"

Sionn stepped forward, "Aye, Ean is right, we must find Aurora. She is sending distractions, the goblins, whatever she has sent against our friends... We have to find her, we have to stop her before she does whatever the hell she is planning! Or worse, before she manages to break US as a unit."

Erebus looked sideways at Sionn and then to Ean and Aurora, "He's right... we must find her. It is her way to try and prod at the unit until she finds a weak point, and then she will unleash her full plan... we must find her, and I feel she is probably down near the crack in the earth."

Even though she was hesitant, Ean could see Aurora complied, and the four of them went with haste towards the large rock fractures down below them. They had only gone a few hundred yards when they came through the trees to a ridge line, and about 30 yards away Arawela, dressed a in her signature black dress, her hair blowing violently in the wind, and the Black Horn hanging off her hip was staring at them.



"THE DAY OF ATONEMENT HAS COME UNCLE!"

Erebus looked at her and stepped forward, "No Arawela, this can end, it can end NOW if you wish it."

She laughed and shook her head, "Blinded by love, such a pity... you love sick puppy and your little unattainable heroine. Just like the Greek Tragedies you read to me as a child."

Erebus stepped forward and spoke, "Arawela, please. This is madness! It will only bring your destruction, I do not want to see you die."

She smirked thinly and grabbed the Black Horn up beside her cheek, "No Uncle, I will not die today, but many will, and I will strike the heart of Aurora as I promised, for I always keep my promises, just as you taught me."


The sickly sound of flesh rending behind him caught Erebus' ear and he spun, a long dagger made of Ulfberht steel was sticking out the front of Ean's chest, and Sionn was pushing it in from behind. The look of horror on Aurora's face, frozen as she saw the crimson red splashing forward, the light of life in Ean's eyes fading before his massive body ever hit the ground. Sionn turned to Aurora and hit her with a ferocious backhand across her cheek as Erebus screamed out and thrust his hands towards Sionn.

The Icewall Shield formed before Sionn, and almost instantaneously evaporated in a flash boil as the magic of Stormborn and Druid collided in the wind, and Sionn dissipated, reappearing immediately beside Aurora. As Arawela looked at Aurora, laying on the ground, her hand to her swelling face, she laughed, "I swore to you that I would take all that you hold dear, that I would kill all you love, that I would see to it that you were little more than a hollow shell by the time I am done with you, and I have done just that today. Your second love is dead, your first will share MY bed tonight, and I will howl with delight as I remember the look on your face."

Erebus sprinted to Aurora and spun as he grabbed her, her body already racked with the tidal wave of grief as Ean lay dead in a massive pool of his own blood. He looked up at Arawela and hissed, "I will see him avenged! I will see it!!!"

Arawela laughed and spoke, "You will see nothing Uncle, nothing but your own hollow heart, empty because you loved one who was incapable of loving you back."

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 3:15 pm

Aurora saw Arawela, listening to the exchange between her and Erebus, her heart breaking for her friend as what she knew was confirmed. Erebus was in love with her and she couldn't return that love. But kept her feelings hidden behind the stoic mask Ean had taught her to hold even as her expressive eyes could hide nothing when she heard the sound flesh rending. She turned to see Sionn drive the Ulfberht blade into Ean's chest, shoving it home.

"NOOOOOOOO!!! EAN!!!"

Her shocked filled eyes turned to Sionn only to feel the power of his backhand, falling to the ground next to Ean as she felt as if her own life were draining from her along with Ean's. She lay there for a moment, staring at Ean then felt the collision of Sionn's and Erebus' magick colliding as Erebus protected her and Ean's lifeless body. She could do nothing but lay there, staring at Ean as she heard Arawela's voice and her words and knew that she'd done what she'd promised. She heard Beau's howl of sorrow and rage, Eryn crying out above her yet all she felt was such a mindless grief that she knew she would never recover. Her heart was dead as was her soul. She would even hand over the bow if it meant bringing Ean back to her.

Then Erebus' arms were around her and the tidal wave of grief took over, her cries of heart wrenching pain spilling forth from her lips as she screamed, her tears flowing as she fought Erebus to get to Ean while Erebus made sure he protected her from his niece and the traitor.

Aurora then turned, looking at Sionn as Erebus held her. "WHY!!!! WHY!!! WHAT OF YOUR SISTERS?!! WHY!!!" Tears soaked her face as she then wrenched herself away from Erebus, using her natural speed to pick up the bow, notch the arrow and whisper the incantation that only she and Erebus would hear. "Burn her alive." Her voice held more hatred then Erebus would think possible of such a gentle soul, her dark eyes almost black now as she let the grief, pain and hatred grow, bleeding into her eyes, a red ring beginning to form around the black irises. She drew back the sacred bow and let the arrow fly followed by ten more within seconds of the first, her hands nothing more than a blur. All the arrows flew at Arawela but not in a group. The first aimed for her heart, the second, her diaphram, third her left shoulder, fourth the right shoulder. The fifth arrow aimed for her midsection, the sixth her right thigh, the seventh her left thight, eighth right shin, ninth left shin and the tenth one for Arawela's head. All ten arrows told to burn her alive with magickal fire fueled by her grief, rage and hatred.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 3:32 pm


Sionn stared at her, a cynical look of satisfaction on his face, "The Stormborn have always aligned with those whom it benefited them, that is the nature of balance! My sister does not see it, my parents don't see it, but there is equilibrium in the maws of all the madness."

He turned his head and looked at Ean, "As for him... he has always been weak, it was time he found out."

Arawela laughed, a dark and sinister laugh that could only come from purely evil intentions. She then watched as Arawela began to boil, watched as the hatred rose within her, and her face spread into one of pure delight as she stood, drew back, and fired her arrows. In a flash, as fast as the tenth arrow was airborn, Arawela brought the Black Horn to her lips and blew a deep, menacing note that drew out across the valley, the magic in it's tone began to blow the trees back, and both hers and Sionn's bodies turned to a transparent, shadowy form. The arrows passed through the magic, passed through her body, and exploded into long, arching purple trails that spread out and arched in drawn out lines that began to look like massive claws, reaching into the crack in the Earth and tore the San Andreas fault line wide open.

A massive earthquake followed almost immediately and that shook and oscillated so violently it brought all manners of creatures to their knees. Rocks were shredded and trees tumbled in every direction as the Earth screamed and tore open along the over 800 miles of fault line. Sionn and Arawela hovered just above the ground, motionless in their protected forms, and as the began to fade away Sionn's voice echoed in Arawela's head, "The Black Horn, an item of unknowable power can only reach the apex of it's potential when matched with the Ancient Bow, when an arrow is fired willingly by the barer." They were the very instructions that had been read to her at McGhee Manor, when they had first met and learned that she was the barer of the bow, as the puzzle pieces of why a Druid would steal the horn, and its instructions, and take such a vested interest in her.

In flash of memories, all the pieces suddenly snapped together like a massive puzzle. The Black Horn and the Bow of Ancients had not been paired in usage since the day Vesuvius exploded in AD 79 and buried Pompeii and Herculaneum. Arawela's ghostly voice echoed over them as the two disappeared into the air, the reality of everything crashing down around them.

Erebus arched his hand up and formed a protective barrier as rocks form the exploding fault line began landing all around them. Despite even than, he grabbed Aurora and brought her to the ground under him, shielding her in case the shield failed.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 3:43 pm

Lily was horrified at what she saw come from Angazhan, the creatures of rot ugly and foul smelling. But when he turned to her, snarling his words down at her she couldn't stop the cringe but stood her ground until the last minute. Just when he would have cut her in two she moved with a supernatural speed, dropping and rolling but she felt the scrap of a nail to her left thigh, feeling it cut deep a drop of rot finding it's way in. Still, she moved again, going once again for his achilles tendons while chanting incantations again, her Ulfberht blades biting deep in intricate patterns as she felt her leg burning. But she didn't stop, glancing at Dietrich to see how he was doing while dodging any blows Angazhan would throw at her. She was worried about Kimiko, Lexy, Lizzy and Carla but she didn't have the luxury to check on them and could only pray to her Goddess that they were safe when she heard the scream of grief followed by the howl of the wolf and the cry of Aurora's Golden Eagle, knowing that something horrible had happened to the Native American girl. But she didn't have time to dwell on it as she barely dodged another swing of Angazhan's beefy, clawed hand.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 3:44 pm



He kept rolling his shoulders the nerve endings were a mess one second burning the next ice cold as he heard the Breakers words as he was taking steps back as he watched the diabolical claw coated in something his mage sight devoured the information as he watched the rot inject and gather material to use as its host, before splitting into seven of its forms he frowned as he saw the numbers split... at least he was a threat it seemed.

His brain coated in bloodlust and rot wanted to simply let the creatures claw at him as he swung his Jutten Slayer flaying each other to shreds to see whos 'rot' had the more favor from the dark lords of Asgard to regenerate themselves. He kept such thinking to his gut though where it brewed instincts of a caged beast waiting for its moment as he logically assessed the situation of four creeps, shades, malignant beings (Maybe bogies). Hell it didn't matter, he just didn't want them to reach him at the same time. He span the double winged axe into the ground removing the last hatchet from the back of the harness spinning it in his palm to feel its balance as he bit the inside of his cheek.

That was when the world seemed to shake he smiled this added emphasis on his last moments just seemed to grow stronger but he had a promise to keep he would not die here.

He spat onto the heavy bladed edge of the head of the hatchet and winding back he threw at the first they didn't expect such a mortal weapon to affect them but it punched into the first slamming into its gelatinous form it screeched as if in pain as it form tried to hold but it couldn't for reasons the other three did not understand that his rot was devouring its hive mind turning ever part of its being to independence to crumble. They were quick to evade when Dietrich threw the eight knives he had in slow placed throws, strategically to slow them differently so they came at him separately. Dietrich took a deep breath he wouldn't give his ace in the hole yet but he withdrew his skinning knife from the last sheath, he would bring himself damn close to revealing it. He carved symbols of long dead magic into the back of his hands the blood ran freely the rot uninterested in clotting it seemed as he picked up his axe and with a fine touch he drew what was almost a masterpiece of a glyph onto the double wings as the first reached him the axe glowing as his arms were a strange purple and the area around his eyes a shade darker as the rest of his skin seemed pale of blood loss as he stepped into the first Rot fiend.

"Feel thy FURY!" The bellow was human but the anger in it was evident at seeing the Breaker chase Lilly as it swung and hitting the first it exploded as if it was glass rot catching on Dietrich's skin it bubbled unable to find entrance to this rot infested man but it peeled at his skin as the blood kept running on the back of his hands as the second came in he hit it with the butt haft of his axe and brought his forehead crushing forwards it still held its form, skin slid off his forehead peeling at the touch of decay. Grinning he slammed his fist forward spinning the axe slowly in one hand the fist connected, shockingly the rot screeched as it acted like a solid cracking where his fist met shards of rot hitting the ground  consumed by the earth again of its host materials. "YOU BRING MY OWN KIND AGAINST ME EXPECT ME TO SEND THEM HOME!" As the furious axe swung again the third barely dodging as sharpened limb extended from the shadowy mass slamming into his shoulder losing his two handed grip on his axe the other moved into his left hoping to puncture the Norseman's heart its limb drawn back Dietrich let the axe haft drop between his fingers taking a short grip he butted the weapon into the attacking fiend. He grabbed the pinning fiend as if it was flesh with his fingers digging into the rot not devoured as it screeched for release as he brought the axe blade to its head. "I'll give you release." Giving a bloody grin maybe he was enjoying this too much as the final one could not stop him from cleaving it in two as it tried to retreat to its brethren attacking the wizards.

As the loss of blood made him shake on his feet a little with the Earth around them spitting chunks of rock and debris he gritted his teeth as he walked very slowly stumbling fewer times than most would with his stout and balanced but this Quake certainly was the undoing of the Fault line. "I guess someone didn't do their job." He muttered not knowing what happened with the other groups great betrayal.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 4:02 pm

Angazhen howled as Lilly's blades bit into him again, and he swiped but missed as the ground beneath the all began to shake so violently it brought them all to their knees. Knowing that the Mistresses task was accomplished he rolled and disappeared back into the same hole he had crawled from, disappearing into the depths below them, depths that seemed to be doing everything they could to show themselves.


Kimiko had just drank the potion and felt the pain leave her, and her strength return when the quake hit, the long line of exploding earth made her eyes go wide and the quake that followed was a thousand times stronger then what she had felt in her home Japan. She crawled as best she could and huddled with Elizabeth and Carla. Extending her hand she formed a magical shield above Lilly and Dietrich as Elizabeth did the same over herself, Lexy and Carla.



After several minutes the ground swell ended and the movement shifted to the west of them. Standing Kimiko ran up to a high spot and screamed in agony as she watched the continental shelf continuing to slide into the ocean, whatever had transpired, the worst was worse then even she thought it could be. She turned and looked up the coastline, the Golden Gate in the distance wrenched and twisted as the ground beneath it collapsed, to the south the land was bubbling and disappearing into the ocean, "My God..."

Elizabeth, Lexy and Carla caught up, followed by Lilly and Dietrich. The watched in horror, and then their earpieces buzzed, crackling and words coming through, "Co...e.... quic..y ... Ean... d..n..."

Elizabeth looked at Lexy and went pale, "No... God NO!!!"

The sisters began to run, the rest of the group on their heels. Feeling for Aurora and Ean, Elizabeth only felt Aurora... her pace quickened, and as they closed the gap she saw the blood on the rocks, the two huddled forms over the massive body on the ground. She screamed again and collapsed as she reached Ean's body, wrapping her arms around him and screaming into his chest, Lexy collapsed onto her brothers limp body as well, grabbing his cheeks with her hands and looking at his open, empty eyes. She shook her head and whispered, "Ean... no brother... no."

Erebus sat back, his energy spent from the shield, and Kimiko knelt beside him, "What happened? How?"

Erebus turned to look at her and whispered, "Sionn, he ran him through from back to front. We never even saw it coming."

Kimiko furrowed her brows and her face showed her anger... how could she have NOT seen it! She turned and looked, Aurora was barely able to remain conscious she was crying so hard, and she lay on Ean's chest sobbing into the blood stained armor he wore.

Lexy was rubbing her hand on Ean's cheek, continuing to whisper, "Brother... you can no leave... we need you, Aurora needs you..." but Ean's eyes remained hollow and empty.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 4:27 pm



He was thankful for the shield as he watched a rock the size of a truck bounce off it on a direct path for him as he did his best to keep up with people after collecting as much of his stuff as he could during the quake he sighed at the pile of ash that had been his shirt sliding weapons home he tentatively slid his body back into his coat wincing as it irritated the burns on his shoulders and he took his socks off wrapping them round his hands to stem the bleeding as he waited for the infernal quake. It moved on but Kimiko's cry told him all he needed he had a rough idea on the geography as he caught up with the other opening a flask that from the smell was a cheap brand of alcohol devouring it to ignore the protests of lack of blood every joint aching at the movement of his blood rapidly...inhumanely it had been the first time any of them had seen his abilities apart from Kimiko's hint... but then again a bigger matter emerged.

Ean... he stood at the back of the crying procession he had liked the big man but he also understood Sionn's logics disgustingly as he saw Kimiko's angry gaze she was taking it personally he dare not approach her and remind her of balance their were moments where the Theology behind Neutral just was hurtful. He kept to himself drinking the cheap whisky wish he had something more expensive to salute the man. "May Sovngarde treat you well, Ean MacGregor." Muttering it as he turned his back to the group as he unsheathed the axe to lean on while the other dispensed fury, sadness, grief... any negative feelings as he looked to Erebus... he had his suspicions of an act like this the minute the groups had changed but no one could have questioned the 'leader' and so it had happened but... Sionn what could benefit the family from this, the lad's being used he guessed but who knew maybe it was strange love. He stopped his mind it was hurting from the blood as he pushed back the braided hair that was somewhat wild from the fight.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 4:45 pm


Lexy looked over at Aurora, she crawled over and wrapped herself around the woman she had come to love and even see as a sister. She said nothing, she could feel the racking sobs that echoed her own, and she just held her, her face buried into Aurora's back.

After a few moments she lifted her head. Blinking her eyes she looked, and things began to clear in head... Aurora's left hand rested peacefully on Ean's chest, right over the open wound. Her hand, covered in his blood was still beautiful, the slender fingers, the neatly done nails, but mostly, the ring Ean had given her as their engagement promise. The pearlescent stone, the rare Shockstone began to pulse softly. Lexy gasped and grabbed Elizabeth, "LIZZY!"

Elizabeth lifted her streaked face and whispered, "What Lexy."

Lexy pointed, "Look!"

Elizabeth turned and sat up in shock and disbelief. The stone, a legend that her grandmother used to talk about, but a story that no known real memory existed, pulsed softly... the Shockstone had come to life.

Lexy reached hastily into her bag and ruffled around, grabbing at this and that and finally bringing up a book which she opened and flipped through rapidly... "...awakens at the time when its power is needed most, at the time when there is no justice in the time of time."

She looked at Lizzy who suddenly leaned in and together they read, "It is very ancient magic."

Lizzy nodded, "Aye, too ...."

Kimiko stepped up and looked down at Lexy, "Not wielded by any but an August."

Lexy looked at Kimiko, her face going pale... "No Kimiko, no... I mean, I have been told, but I have never learned."

Kimiko smiled softly and knelt beside her, "August power is not learned youngling, it is passed down, it is already in you, it is no more complicated than breathing."

She looked at Kimiko and then to Aurora, then back to Kimiko, "But we need a source, there needs to be an exchange."

Suddenly a voice broke and Erebus spoke, "I will."

Lexy turned and looked at him shaking her head, "No Erebus, you will not survive."

He smiled, his face was as sad as any had ever seen it and he knelt down, his hand on Aurora's shoulder but he looked at Lexy, "I will live in memory, I will live in the fulfillment of what is right. I can not be loved, but I can bring love back."

Kimiko looked at Erebus who stared at her, then she turned to Lexy, "Balance would be restored."

Lexy went pale, knowing exactly what this meant, but Erebus was resolute and she whispered, "Are you sure?"

He looked at her and smiled sadly, "I have been sure about many things that have not come to pass. I was sure my brother was right, I was sure I could raise my niece to be a powerful Druid, and then I was sure I could change her... I was sure we would stop her." He swallowed hard and spoke through his sadness, "Yes I have been sure of many things, most of which have not come to pass...but of this, I am more sure than I have ever been."

Lexy nodded softly and took his hand, placing it on top of the Shockstone. She reached into her bag and removed a vile of healing potion and poured it over his hand. The liquid ran down the sides and over Aurora's hand, and finally onto Eans body. She looked at Erebus and whispered, "Conjuration Est'Lastana Rella Guest"

The words had come out without her even knowing what she was saying, like Kimiko said... it was like breathing. Erebus turned and looked at Aurora, his smile confident and sure he whispered, "Love him... he deserves you."

The light left his eyes and at the moment his body went limp Ean breathed in deeply and coughed, the wound in his chest healed, his body fully restored... he blinked and looked into the sky like he hadn't seen light for years.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 4:49 pm

Lily swallowed the pain from her broken ribs and rot infected leg, huddling close to Dietrich as the ground shook so violently she thought for sure it would kill her before her injuries but then she saw the shied and knew that Kimiko was protecting them again even from the distance.
Then it stopped and the cackle came through her earpiece and she lagged behind the group but followed only to feel her eyes well up in tears at the sight.  She turned away, gritting her small teeth at the injustice of it as she listened to Erebus' words.  She moved over to Dietrich, craning her neck to look up at the big man, "Ye are alright, Dietrich?"

When his eyes turned down to look upon her, she had one arm wrapped around her midsection, holding her two broken ribs when she felt something move within her mid left thigh, looking down at the deep furrow as well as the blackness oozing from it.   Her brows furrowed as if in confusion, remembering getting hit by the beast but not the rot seeping in when the burning began.  She didn't want to draw attention away from the group in their time of mourning so she turned away from all of them, Dietrich included, wracking her brain for anything her mother may have taught her as a very young girl before they'd been lost to her and she'd found herself in the orphanage.

It was then that she heard the commotion and turned to see a pulsing light from where she stood on Aurora's hand.  She didn't approach, gritting her teeth to the pain in her leg and broken ribs, when Dietrich she heard Dietrich's words and then felt him grab her, his fingers digging into the hold in her leg. She cried out in pain, her hands gripping his massive arms to keep from falling from the intense pain as he drew the wild rot out. Once it was over, she all but collapsed when he released her as if to just let her fall which she ended up doing anyway, falling to her knees, her pale face a sickening white from what he'd done and the pain it had shot through her broken ribs, but she would live. It was then that she looked over at the group and she had an idea what was going on when she saw Erebus slump over and knew he'd given his life to bring back Aurora's love.  A tear slid down her pale cheek at the thought of the druid's ultimate sacrifice for the woman he loved but could not love him back.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 5:01 pm



Dietrich grunted as he saw what was unfolding and saw that Lily moved away from the group he placed the stopper on the flask and moved next to her he sniffed and he shook his head. "I could extract it but it may hurt even more than Kimiko lancing it." As he turned to her seeing that determined look he looked back to the group seeing them in awe over what was almost a miracle as he turned to Lily his thumb and knuckles click as if dislocating themselves and then he pushed them into the wound his other arm holding her up as her legs almost gave way she felt a painful surge as she felt something injecting into her was Dietrich infecting her? But he was calm as he was intent on what he was doing she could feel the two rots meet even Dietrich's burned but it did not possess her like the wild one as he coaxed it in like a child to candy the wild rot was consumed and through gasping pain he extracted his rot from her wound with the wild. "You should be good." It had felt like flies alive beneath the skin chewing at flesh but at least she knew she wasn't going to turn into a pile of ooze.

Dietrich looked back upon Ean breathing as he saw Erebus still form he felt his hand twinge into a fist but quickly calmed himself the so called balance was what he had to remind himself he couldn't take the druids side like his Ancestors and himself had once done. Without balance repercussions were made as he pulled the whiskey out again. "A toast to tomorrow?" Offering it to Lily as he watched the confused emotions joy or sadness among the group.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Mon Feb 23, 2015 5:37 pm

Aurora clung to Lexy as she sobbed, her body beginning to feel weak from the use of the spell with the bow, Sionn's betrayal and most of all, Ean's death when she felt the pulsing on her left hand that still rested on Ean's chest over the wound. She opened her eyes, seeing the ring as it glowed and pulsed, whispering a "What?", even as she left her hand there. She vaguely heard Lexy's exclamation to Lizzy and then there was a flurry of activity, her hand remaining on Ean's chest the whole time.

It was Erebus' words, though, that had her gasping, shaking her head as she whispered , "No". But he would not be deterred. Finally, she nodded her head, fresh tears rolling down her cheeks as he gave his life to bring back Ean to her, his words forever burned into her brain as she too spoke to him, "Thank you, Erebus....your heart is the purest of all."

Then she watched as Ean's eyes opened as she sat there staring at first, unable to believe that it was possible. After a few seconds she raised herself up, her face now above Ean's, her deep brown eyes filled with love as she looked down at him with a smile. Her tears dropped onto his face as her long, raven's wing black hair created a curtain around their faces. She leaned in and pressed her lips to his, whispering "I love you" before her lips met his.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 10:37 am


Ean looked up at Aurora and smiled, his large, loving eyes staring directly at hers, "I love you too Rory..."


The ground shook beneath them again as aftershocks started to spread from the fault line and then intensify. Ean grabbed Aurora and sat up, only then noticing the blood all over his chest. He furrowed his brows, completely unsure of what happened, but certain that he needed to worry about that later. The group huddled close to support one another, and Kimiko yelled as the grounds swelling and shaking became more and more violent, "WE NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE!"




Elizabeth looked at Kimiko and responded, her voice volume barely above that of the screaming landscape, "How? We can no dissipate far enough to escape this!"

Kimiko looked at her and her eyes showed her conviction, "There is a way, but it will take all three of us... and it's going to suck and there is great risk."

Elizabeth looked at Lexy, her eyes full of concern and then back to Kimiko. She knew in her heart that there was no choice, they would have to take the chance, "If we stay here we die, let's do it."

Lexy looked at Kimiko and nodded a confirmation of Elizabeth's words.

Kimiko bit her lower lip and reached into her beautiful kimono, withdrawing a bag made of fine silk. She opened the draw string and handed it to Lexy, make sure everyone is covered well in this, spread it generously on everyone, until there is no more."

The ground bucked beneath them and Kimiko looked at Lexy, "And I don't need to tell you to hurry."

Lexy nodded and looked at Erebus' dead body, Kimiko interjected before she could speak, "We leave none of our party behind."

Lexy smiled and nodded as she started to work. Eryn and come and landed beside Beau, Lexy spread the shimmering powder on them first, then Carla and the rest of the party. Finally she began to smear it on herself, Kimiko and Elizabeth.

Elizabeth and Kimiko in the meantime began to gather other reagents from their storages, Kimiko took three pearls, and some Scottish moss that Elizabeth had. She rubbed the moss on the pearls, and spoke over the increasingly louder and louder crumbling of the Earth around them, "I will cast the incantation, but we will need to be holding hands, we will all feel the drain from the source, and we will all be unconscious when we arrive."

Lexy looked at her as her hair flew wildly, "And where will that be??"

Kimiko looked at her and spoke as she pressed one of the pearls into her right palm, "Wherever this moss came from."

Lexy looked at Elizabeth and she smiled, "The Loch, just below the cottage."

The group gathered and the three magi linked hands, right palms up holding the pearls while the left hand of the wizard beside her rested over the top of the pearl so that they were linked in a triangle. Kimiko yelled, "Everyone touch us, get both hands on us, and be ready!"

They knelt down so that Erebus' body was in the middle and Kimiko began to chant, her incantation becoming louder and louder, repeated a dozen times so that it was building power and intensity. The pearls in the lady wizards hands began to heat up and burn, though they left no mark the heat intensified until finally Lexy cried out softly. A blue arc exploded from their palms, wrapping around the group and the reagents smeared on their bodies began to glow and pulsate. Like an electrical current the power filled them and exploded like a bundle of dynamite, the group evaporating from the hilltop only moments before it was sucked into the fault line.

---

The group felt damp rocks beneath their feet. The Scottish rain fell on their backs. Their cloths were gently steaming from the burnt off reagents. Kimiko, Elizabeth and Lexy all collapsed onto Erebus as the power was pulled form their bodies, and Ean immediately reached forward and checked them, "They are alive... but we need to get them inside."

He picked up Elizabeth, Dietrich grabbed Kimiko, and Aurora, assisted by Carla grabbed Lexy. Ean looked at Lilly, "Can you please stay with Erebus? I will be back in two shakes to assist you."

Lilly complied and Ean made haste to the cottage, getting Elizabeth into her bed. He looked at Carla and Aurora, "Please get them into clean clothing and I will be back."

He looked at Dietrich and spoke, "Come my friend, we can no leave our other friends out in the rain."

Dietrich followed and they retrieved Lilly, and Erebus' body. Ean carried Erebus as Dietrich sheltered Lilly, and brought the man into the training barn, laying his body in the center of the training mat. He was still completely unaware of the man's actions and sacrifice, but for now he knew that the remains needed to be treated with respect.

He went into the cottage and immediately went to where the others were, upstairs with his sisters and Kimiko.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:32 pm

Aurora called Eryn and Beau to her as the ground shook once more, staying molded to Ean as her sad gaze turned to Erebus' still form as the three wizards did their magick to get them out of there. Then, they were on the rocks under their cottage that she'd come to call home the three women unconscious on top of Erebus.

Once she and Carla had Lexy to her room and changed into warm, dry clothing she went to the window and watched as Ean carried Erebus' lifeless form to the training barn. Her mouth was set into a stubborn line as she left the room, hearing Carla say something but she didn't reply. Still only dressed in what she'd worn in California she walked out to the training barn, not seeing Ean as she went. Once inside, she was shivering with the dampness and cold but she didn't feel it as she found Erebus' body laid gently on a soft mound of straw. She knelt down next to him, one delicate golden brown hand reaching out to smooth back a strand of hair from his lifeless face.

"You did your best to protect me from her, Erebus... never doubt that", she spoke to him in a soft voice. "You gave your life so that I could keep Ean when you could have left him dead and taken me for yourself for in time I know I would have come to love you. Not like I love Ean. Never will I ever love another like I do Ean. But a little.....I would have come to love you a little." She leaned in to kiss him on his lips then sat back up, her dark eyes now black as the hatred, rage and hurt began to fill her gentle heart once more. "I will avenge you, Erebus Poe. I will see her dead and Sionn as well. By the Goddess and by Wankantanka I will see them dead." The whole time she spoke, her crystal tears fell onto his face before she sat back, taking the small vial she'd grabbed on her way out and dipping her fingers into it. She traced tears from her eyes down to her chin then lifted her hands up to the ceiling and began the song of her ancestors to say good-bye to their loved ones.

Her beautiful voice raised up above the sound of the rain and the waves crashing against the rocks under the cottage. It was a sad, mournful sound yet so beautiful it would bring tears to even the hardest of hearts. The whole time, Beau with Eryn on his back stood within the entrance of the training barn their eyes filled with worry at what might be happening to their charge for they'd seen her eyes change during the battle and they just watched it happen again.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:48 pm



The inside him tried to devour the magic but he kept a firm grasp on its hunger though he knew with all the battling the rot was hardly satisfied with the results as it squirmed under his flesh the reagents growing hot as well as the magic burned it to transport him through god knows what, he was thankful for the rain. The scottish air was too fresh almost with moss and damp as he couldn't help but cough slightly to clear his lungs from the air from Sannie some would have vomited with the transition others... well the wizards were all out cold as he heard Ean mutter Dietrich looking back to Lily as he was asked to moved Kimiko first.

They moved everyone into the cottage, Dietrich helped where he could as finally they moved everyone back into the cottage Dietrich stayed just out on the porch of the place sheltered from the rain he bid Lily go in to ensure her friends were ok. That's when he glanced Aurora move past them both towards the barn he guessed she needed time. He found himself walking down the steps tapping a packet of cigarettes from one of the mysterious pockets in his coat even in the damp air it was a miracle for his beaten old lighter to set the tip glowing. He leaned on the wall by the door as he saw the worry in the familiars and smiled as he pulled on the white stub hearing the song he did not break but rather smiled as he was reminded of memories he had long forgotten the bitter sadness and anger long gone from his broken memories as he thought on her words he had barely heard.

"She'll be alright she still has Ean that dopey bear." As he couldn't help but pat Beau but got a quick peck for insulting Ean from Eryn Dietrich pulled his hand back slowly unwrapping the bloodstained sock he had used as a bandage round his hands the wounds were already a crusted symbol the rot pulled the blood to solidify but it would't knit the skin he had used far too much power for such helpful healing as he could feel the skin was raw and new still where he had contacted the rot. He slid from the barn wall looking up into the sky feeling the droplets slide down his face the cigarette fizzing as he didn't bother to relight it he headed back to the cottage hoping to have avoided Ean's wrath at learning of Sionn.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 2:07 pm


As the song concluded, Whipsy fluttered in and landed on the weapon rack that held the wooden swords she trained with. Her eyes glowed softly and swirled like clouds being driven by a sea storm. There was a soft halo of light surrounding her and she stepped forward, looking at Erebus. Tucking her head she brushed her beak against Erebus' cheek and then hopped up onto his chest and stared directly at Aurora.

Her voice came like a soft breeze that carried church bells across a landscape, "The purity he ascended to is obvious, the shock stone could not have unlocked if it were not so."

As Aurora looked at Whipsy, the spirit creature tilted her head slightly and spoke, "Erebus gave so Ean could live, but his spirit still resides within the shock stone. It is a matter of exchange, and its power can only be unlocked in the presence of absolute and the purest of love. The legends that accompany the shock stone are separated by such large gaps of time that the stories of its awakening become rumor, the rumors become, story, the story become fairytale, and the spirit continues to reside within, waiting for the day that its energy can be released."

Aurora looked at the shock stone and Whipsy continued, "Its secret is yours to keep, not even the McGhees can know, lest you defile the memory he who gave so you can receive."

Whipsy leapt into the air and landed on the weapon rack again, turning and looking at Aurora, "Your journey has only begun brave one, may your spirits continue to guide you, and may you cherish this gift that Erebus has given you always."

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:13 pm

Aurora was startled when Whispy appeared, sitting on Erebus' chest only to give the beautiful raptor a small smile when she gently rubbed her sharp beak against his cheek. Then she spoke and Aurora listened, her eyes welling up with new tears as she stared at the shock stone resting so perfectly on her left ring finger, her right index finger lovingly stroking it as she thought of Erebus always being with her now until at which time he would be needed again.

"I will cherish this, Whispy, and keep it to myself. Never would I defile Erebus memory. Like my druid father, Erebus was loving, kind and pure." She watched as another crystal tear fell, only this time onto the shock stone. "Thank you, Erebus.....for giving me back my heart." She raised the ring to her lips and kissed it then smiled up at Whispy.

She remained for awhile longer before she finally realized how cold she was becoming, dressed only in a t-shirt and jeans which were wet from the cold rain of the Scottish weather. Her teeth began to chatter and she knew she needed to leave Erebus' body and return to the cottage and Ean, but she just couldn't bring herself to leave him.

She rose and looked around, finally finding what she was looking for. A Scottish blanket. She retrieved it, her small body beginning to shiver harder but she wasn't leaving yet. She would not leave him to become cold in the damp weather. Returning to him, she covered him up to his chin, tears once more falling as she covered his face gently. "There, Erebus....I won't have you becoming chilled, my friend."
Rising, her body now visibly shaking from the cold she turned to where Beau and Eryn waited for, oblivious of Dietrich's short time there. She saw their worry in their eyes and stroked Eryn's feathers then Beau's head. "Do not worry. I will be okay. I will not let the rage take over." She'd learned that being half druid she needed to be careful for the rage and hatred could very well trigger that side of her nature and she did not want that even though she would avenge Erebus.

With Beau and Eryn, she walked across the yard back to the cottage, desperately needing Ean's arms around when she raised a hand to her cheek, wincing at the swelling and telltale bruising from Sionn's blow. She'd forgotten about him hitting her to the ground but now, shaking from the cold and the shock having worn off she was beginning to feel everything as she was sure everyone else would be.
Entering the cottage, the warm air hit her and she all but dropped as her shaking grew in earnest, her clothes now wet again instead of damp, her long hair also wet and hanging about her face. She needed Ean....she needed to see him again....see him breathing.....feel his arms around her. She also had something to discuss with him.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:00 pm

Lily felt the ground shake once more, only to have Lexy rub something on her and then they were back in Scotland, down on the rocks under the MacGreagor's cottage with three out cold wizards. She nodded to Ean when he bade her to remain with Erebus' body, her arm still wrapped around her waist, holding her broken ribs. When they returned, Dietrich walked with her up to the cottage then told her to remain with the rest of them as he walked out. She felt a little.......ignored by him as she turned away from him, wondering if she was a fool.

Turning away, she stood there, unsure what to do. This was not her home nor was it the MacGhee's home whom her parents had known. Sighing, she too went out to the porch but Dietrich was gone. Again, she sighed walking to the far side of the porch to stand there and look out over the land, watching it rain. She took a deep breath only to give a small cry as her broken ribs reminded her that they were indeed broken.

Her thoughts drifted to what all had happened, worry for the wizards entering her mind and then to Dietrich again she wondered if she'd been a fool to have fallen for the viking. She had little to no experience with men as it was and wondered if perhaps she simply wasn't good enough for him

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:58 pm


Ean was sitting in the living room, the teli was on, the news coming out of California broadcasting on every BBC Channel. Ean was watching quietly, exchanging glacnes with Dietrich, both of them more accustomed to the capabilities of the Races, and especially Druids. Carla on the other hand, watched in horror. She was pale, wide eyed and her mouth was dry as she whispered, "So many people... all... dead."

Ean reached over and placed his hand on her knee, looking at her sadly, "Aye lass, this is what we call, 'the madness of Druids'. They have been responsible for most of the major disasters in the Earth's history, always tryin' to one up the last... I guess Arawela did it this time aye?"

He had changed, his clothing was dry and clean, but he still felt filthy. He turned when the door closed at the back of the house, and looking at Dietrich he spoke, "Lilly?"

The two of them went to the back of the house and Aurora, wet, cold, and exhausted lay on the floor. Ean rushed to her and scoped her up in his strong arms, pulling her close and speaking, "Rory? What? I thought you were upstairs with the lassies? When did you sneak out?"

He turned to look at Dietrich and spoke, "If it was'na Lil coming in, you might should go find her lad."

Dietrich gave a nod and disappeared, to find the young Irish woman, Ean picked Aurora's tired body up and carried her to her room, set off behind the stairs on the lower level. He closed the door with his foot and set her down on the large over stuffed chair, looking at her, "We uh... we need to get you out of those wet clothes love, can you manage or..." He blushed softly and then cleared his throat, "Of course you can, you are no invalid... I... I will get some hot water and tea."

He disappeared and hurried to the kitchen, pouring the hot water and placing one of Aurora's favorite tea's into a tea ball he submerged it into the serving pot and returned to her room. Knocking softly she bid him enter and he went in, closing the door behind him. She was in dry clothing but she was still shivering and he set the tray down, "Let me get you a blanket my love."

He went to the closet and retrieved a beautiful, soft wool blanket, woven in the pattern of his clan tartan and worked so finely that the itch had been taken out of the wool. He wrapped her up in in and rubbed her shoulders after pouring her some tea, "What were'ya doin' out that weather lass? I can only suspect you went to see Erebus... I don'a know what happened. Obviously I was hit somehow or something, the blood on my clothes but... I remember nothing."

He turned and looked at her, a look of almost shame in his eyes, "What DID happen out there Rory? The whole western side of the state of Califronia from San Francisco to Mexico is gone, it's in the ocean, millions upon millions are dead, and I don'a remember a THING."

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Thu Feb 26, 2015 9:35 am

Aurora felt Ean's strong arms lift her off the floor and carry her to her room, only to leave her to make her her favorite mint tea with honey while she got out of her wet clothes and into dry ones. When he returned, wrapping her in a blanket she tried to give him a small smile but failed as her teeth were still chattering. But it was what he said after wrapping her up that had her closing her eyes, fresh tears sliding down her bruised cheek. When she opened her expressive doe eyes they were filled with such sorrow that all Ean could do was kneel in front of her.

She tried to take a sip of her tea before beginning but her hands were still shaking too badly and all she did was slosh it over the rim onto the saucer so she gave it over willingly to Ean to set on the small table next to the chair she sat in the tears still falling.

"You died Ean", she said in a soft voice her dark eyes staring into his own. "Sionn killed you, stabbed you from back to front with an Ulferbht blade." Her breath hitched then as she tried to hold the sobs in check. "Then he hit me only to vanish and reappear where Arawela stood when Erebus put up a protective barrier so that Sionn couldn't touch us again. He betrayed us, Ean. And he took you from me because she asked him to." She stopped, her crying making it impossible to continue. It wasn't until she calmed that she continued. "She went ahead with her plan for the earthquake and then the others were there." That was when she looked down at the shock stone ring, lovingly rubbing it with her fingertips of her right hand. "My hand rested over your heart where the blade had come through but nothing was beating until the stone began to pulse and glow and Lexy saw it. Her, Lizzy and Kimiko figured it out." She then explained what she remembered them saying about the stone before she turned her eyes back up to his having been looking at the stone at the time, her tears falling onto it. "In order to bring you back someone had to sacrifice themselves to the stone. Erebus.......he......he gave himself so that you could come back to me", she said in a whisper. "He loved me so much that he could't bare to see my heart breaking at you being taken from me. Then, once you were back and he was gone Arawela finished it and Lexy, Lizzy and Kimiko got us all home." She was now crying softly again, feeling his arms around her as he held her even though she knew he had to be in shock.

After a few moments she quieted, leaning back to stare intently into his own eyes. "Ean...I do not want to wait. I lost you....they took you from me and if not for the stone and Erebus you wouldn't not be before me now. " Her soft, golden hands cradled his face as she leaned forward, kissing his lips softly before whispering against them. "Make me yours, Ean MacGreagor. Then.....if possible, I do not want to wait to marry you. I lost you", she said trying desparately to keep herself under control. "I want to belong to you in ever sense of the word." She kissed him again then, deeper and with more passion. She didn't know if he would do as she asked and she wouldn't love him any less if he didn't, but she did not want to lose him again without knowing that was his completely.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:03 pm


Dietrich nodded slowly as he was asked to find Lily he felt a pang in his gut afterall he had shrugged her off his mind a mess considering Sionn, Ean, Erebus the teleportation he was coping as he stepped out onto the porch to find Lily.

"Scottish weather always extremes never a little, bitter wet or scorching hot." Moving next to her leaning the axe on the handrail as he rested his elbows on the rail. "How are your holding up?" Noticing she was sheltering her ribs but that could be healed emotionaly one had to find thier own ways, afterall he smelled of cheap booze amd cigarettes but the longer thought on it was quite a logical coping mechanism.

He turned his head the thick mass of hair pulled back into a single ponytail having pulled the somewhat wild braids out. "I'm sorry." Whispering the words she wasn't sure if they were to her or another as they stared into the rain.

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:39 pm

Lily had been standing at the end of the porch for awhile, her clothing and hair now more than damp as she shivered a little. She was so deep in thought about the wizards, all the people that were now gone, Sionn's betrayal...all of it, that she didn't hear or feel his lumbering steps until he was next to her, making her jump which caused a groan of pain to fall from her lips. She knew she was lucky, the ribs being low instead of high but they were still very painful.

She listened to what he said about the weather, answering his question about her well being. "Aye....I will live, Dietrich", she said softly still not looking at him when she heard him whisper his, "I'm sorry." She looked around to see if one of the others had stepped out. Seeing no one she turned her head, looking up into his eyes. "Sorry? Fer what, Dietrich?"

She turned her eyes back to the rain as he spoke softly about he he'd shrugged her off. She in turn shrugged her own small shoulders only to wince at the sharp pain in her broken ribs. "Tis okay, Dietrich. Ye hae' more important things tae see tae and take care of", she said softly with a tinge of hurt she tried to hide. She wasn't trying to be dramatic, only truthful as was her way. She said it the way she saw it but it still hurt.

She once more wondered about Dietrich. She knew she'd fallen hard for him, maybe even falling in love with him after having cast the binding spell on the beast but she did not feel she was good enough for him. He knew the world, she knew little except what she'd learn traveling with the circus. He knew what he was and could do, she was still learning. She honestly did not feel worthy of the viking

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:50 pm


Ean looked at Aurora for a long while, his face was still and like stone. Finally he furrowed his brows slightly and reached up, lovingly tracing his finger along the side of the bruise, where it wouldn't bring her pain. He looked up into her eyes and whispered, "Sionn... Sionn caused this bruise... Sionn caused this pain," he reached down and gently, lovingly, touched her breast bone directly above the heart. He looked down at the skin where his finger tip was pressed and then back up into her eyes. He said nothing more, but his eyes welled up slightly and he spoke again, "He killed me..."

He listened as she spoke her words, and without hesitation he nodded softly, "Aye, aye, I will marry you my sweet Aurora. I will marry you."

He looked outside her window, staring at the top of the barn, "But first, we must see Erebus laid to rest... I had my doubts, and now I know that my judgement of him was wrong." He looked back at her eyes, "I had a feeling, a feeling that there was something in our midst not right, and the whole time I suspected Erebus."

His eyes welled and he spoke through a soft sob, "Yet it was Erebus that saw me reunited with my love... it was the one who I had sworn off, that showed real love."

He inhaled deeply and looked back out to the roof of the barn, the rain coming hard and fast now, heavily bathing the thatching, "We will see our friend to rest, we will bury him among MY ancients, we will see him put where he belongs," He looked back at her, "Among the heroes of the MacGregors, and that is how he shall always be remembered."

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PostSubject: Re: Ch 11 - Shattered   Thu Feb 26, 2015 3:13 pm

Aurora's eyes were filled with love for Ean as he ever so gently touched her bruise then her breast bone at her heart, watching his eyes begin to shine with unshed tears as he processed all that she's told him, but especially how his best friend had betrayed him, his love and his family.

When he stood and and walked to the window, staring out she sat there, listening to him but at his soft sob she rose quickly and was behind him, wrapping her slender arms around his wais, resting her bruised cheek against his back then pressing a kiss in the middle. She just stood there, holding him as he spoke. Her heart lightened some at his words of them getting married sooner but was still heavy at the thought of what Ean was going through and the thought of burying Erebus. But she was grateful that he would be remembered and buried as a hero.

"I love you so much, Ean MacGregor. When you died I was going to follow you. Once you had been avenged I would have followed you", she said softly kissing his back again. "Thank you for honoring Erebus this way. He derserves this and so much more. This must be the way my father was.....the druid with a heart is what my mama called my papa." She was quiet for a moment when he turned so that he faced her, wrapping his strong arms around her again. She tilted her head back to look up at him, "I love you....more than life itself, Ean. Erebus must be avenged as well as Sionn's betrayal to all of us, but mainly to you."

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