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 Crenel, the Prison Planet

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Eris-Tam
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PostSubject: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Sat 03 Mar 2012, 12:50 am

Somewhere in the 1st Dimension, hidden away in the far reaches of the known parts of that galaxy, is a massive structure. On the outside, it appears to be a massive black-silver cube, with flat sides and no entrance or exit. It rotates slowly on two of its points, giving the whole thing a sharp, diamond-like appearance. As a whole, it is very aesthetically pleasing--but only if you're outside looking in. On the inside, it's a living hell.

Hundreds of thousands of cells line Crenel's hallways, each specifically designed for one prisoner, but the cells that once used to echo with moans and shouts now scream in the silence. But in the middle of it all is one cell, better fortified against its prisoner than any other. It is protected by a huge array of security devices, from force fields to electrified walls and laser-netted entrances. Many of the other cells have special specifications for prisoners who were physically or mentally stronger than the center cell's criminal, but the man that it was designed for had killed more people than any of the others combined. He had committed genocide more than once, and he was Crenel's single most dangerous prisoner. Valderis Robless.

Eris-Tam materializes just outside of the center cell in the now deadly silent and abandoned prison block. When Robless escaped, he freed all of the other criminals, and when they turned on and attacked the guards everyone fled. What had once been a prominent, powerful Alcatraz had been reduced to nothing more than an empty block of metal, whirling through space, its purpose dispersed into the wind. But that doesn't matter to Tam. She wouldn't need any guards, and Robless' old cell was more than enough to contain herself and the Thel-ghan'che. She looks at the control panel and at the various switches that manage all of the various defense mechanisms. And then she presses every single one forward, at full strength. Using the last of her remaining power from the Neiede link, she teleports herself into the cell, using the last bit of it, preventing her from being able to teleport back out once the Thel-ghan'che took control. She stands in the room for a long moment, looking around, absorbed in her thoughts. She had just found out that her half-brother was still alive, and that D'garar had undergone memory loss and had no idea what was going on. Though her link with Archie had been reestablished, there was still the dull pain of being away from him yet again, though her mind was long used to it.

Still, there was a long battle ahead. Not only for herself, but for her friends as well. Soon the Thel-ghan'che would take over again, and she would either have to give in to it and risk losing herself until the others found a cure, or continue to fight it during all the time she was contained. Instead of making a decision, Eris-Tam sat down in the very center of the cell, knees tucked under her, eyes closed, just waiting. Waiting for the parasite to push against her. She would make the decision when she had to, but no sooner.

Meanwhile, outside the cell, unknown to Tam, Crenel's automated outside defense system buzzed to life. Sentry drones picked themselves off the floor where they had last been shut down, and the entire prison rippled with mechanical life. They would target anything that came nearby, a function designed for only the most dire of circumstances. They would eliminate anything that moved, anything that had a heat signature, or anything that breathed and lived in the blink of an eye. Every single operation meant to protect Crenel from outside attacks whirred to life, and became poised to strike. And Tam sat quietly in the center cell, calmly waiting for the fight of her life, with no knowledge of the fact that she may have just killed every last one of her friends. Just one switch, one switch, hidden on a panel full of others, seemingly inconsequential.

Crenel, the Prison Block, glowed red.

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett


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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Mon 12 Mar 2012, 9:30 am

Tam threw herself against the wall.
As the electric current it delivered coursed through her body her form rapidly shifted between many different species, her implant reacting to the variance in energy. She held herself against it despite the pain it brought her, knowing that it would hurt the Thel-ghan'che as well. So her weight was the only thing that kept her in contact with the shocks until her strength melted away and the electricity left her body shaking and twitching on the floor, her leg muscles having given out completely.
The Thel-ghan'che made a strong push, but Tam was fighting. She had to fight. If not for herself--which she had given up on completely--for her friends. They were putting themselves in danger to help her, to try and save her, so she owed it to them.
But the parasite's push was more lasting this time, and the pressure it was putting on Tam's already tenuous grip was straining her hold. She gritted her teeth. No! Her mind flashed through the faces of her friends, pausing on each one.

D'garar. The man who had saved her once before was now working to save her again.

Zyria. The Plutonian leader who had been through so much, who was dedicated to helping Tam even though she had done nothing for Zyria that deserved earning such a wonderful friend.

Emerik. A man who had gone through so much... she had helped him, yes, but instead of putting his family first he was helping her. How did she deserve that?

Caz. Her second in command, one of the last three of her kind. At least he had a good reason to help her.

Robless. The man she had hated for almost her entire life... to think that inside, he had been as tortured as she now was. She had rescued him, yes... but somehow Tam felt as though his fight against the parasite needed to be over, finally.

Archelaus. Her Neiede. Her mind paused on his face for longer than the rest, and he was the one person of all of them for which she truly understod his reasons for doing everything he could to save her. She understood it because she knew that she would do the same thing for him in a heartbeat.

All of them... they gave her strength. But she knew, deep down inside, that it would not be enough. She knew that no matter how hard she fought the Thel-ghan'che, her friends would never make it to her in time to prevent it from taking over. As there were no physical restraints that could keep her at bay they would have to fight her to save her. She knew it would be hard on them... but she had done all she could. She could feel the parasite taking hold, sapping her strength and her spirit...

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett


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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 18 May 2012, 8:55 pm

(Loving this story...you should keep us posted on your character's status and devolving condition to add a deeper sense of urgency to the main story, Eris-Tam!)

~*~
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us." - Marianne Williamson
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Tue 22 May 2012, 1:45 pm

((Alrighty. I'd sorta already ended it, but I'll edit and continue:))

Echoing screams came to Tam's ears. She knew they were her own, ripping their way from her chest, but they met her ears as the screams of others. At first, they were her people's screams as Robless' ships decimated her planets. Families, torn apart. So many lives ended, destroyed. She saw a little girl, crying for her family as they and then she turned to nothing but ash and smoke. The parasite whispered in her ear all the time, its maddening voice threatening to push her over the edge. "Yes... direct your anger and your hate at Robless... he killed your people..." it breathed, tantalizingly.

Yes... his fault. Everything is--NO! Tam had almost been sucked into its words, but fought once again. "No!" she screamed back at the silent voice. "No! You did those things, you made him do them!" And as that strategy failed, the parasite showed her something new. Darkness, all around, and the sound of skittering creatures. Her friends were there, all of them, and she knew that this was the cave, the Cave of Shattered Suns where her friends were fighting... fighting all to save her. Dying, maybe... all for her. She saw Drel-Caz's face, blank and empty and lost. She recognized the look--it was the same look that Archelaus had when... when he broke their bond.

Tears and sobs racked her body as she even only pictured it again, felt the utter aloneness that had fallen upon her when he severed what had held her fragile psyche together for so long. Tam could barely think for the darkness that was pushing its way through, infecting each memory and thought individually. Were the flashes that the parasite used to taunt her real? Had Caz somehow... found... his Neiede and then... broken the link? Her mind struggled to puzzle through the simplest connections. Because of... Zyria. Yes, for Zyria. She forced herself to pull forth the Princess' face, and saw her trying to be strong, but crying inside. So... Caz broke it... to be with Zyria. It made sense, sort of, but...

She didn't get to focus on the thought. She saw... her brother. He lay in the darkness, alone, lifeless. A huge spike protruded from his chest, and she watched the last of his life fade, wither, and die in his eyes. She screamed in terror for a moment, I've only just found him, please don't...! But then she realized that the vision must be false. Cassus was too good... to go down so easily. She told herself over and over that he was still alive, not dead, Cassus was fine...

She realized that she had her knees tucked into her chest, curled into fetal position, and was rocking back and forth. She forced herself to stop, then drug herself across the floor of the cell blindly, moving towards the door.

As she neared it, a tiny slot in the wall opened. It shot out a tiny nanite dart, hitting its target, similar to the device Robless had used on her when she herself had--no! When the parasite had--tried to kill him. Just as before, she completely lost control of herself, pain searing through her body like acid, leaving little burned pathways in her nervous system that ached even after the nanites were gone.

But even with the pain to hold her down in her own body, she felt her grip slipping. Images kept flashing by, keeping pace with the rhythm of the pain. Her friends, dying in the Battle at Snowdove. Archelaus' face as she told him to leave, go, get himself and the other Alteriians to safety, that they, the Kazesqui, would die for them. Their last embrace before she had been torn from his arms. She tried to hold on to his face as it had been eight hundred years ago, unmarred by years and years of pain and loss. But the picture quickly changed, advancing to the present day, his face pale, sweat streaming from his skin, his eyes distant, panicked, watching things that weren't there. His eyes then... fixed on her for a fleeting moment and his face twisted with pain, with desperation, with rage, with fear. She realized that if this was real then his eyes had just fallen on an image of her, now, her body contorted and convulsing on the floor of her cell, still screaming in agony as the nanites burned her and she fought against the parasite's ever-growing control. Her love fell to his knees at the heartbreaking sight, as whatever was hurting him forced him to watch her. She called out to him, breath coming in gasps between screams, but she couldn't stop her body's reactions even long enough to try to tell him that she was okay, even though it would have been a lie.

Behind Archelaus, who looked like his heart was being ripped from his chest by this image of her, lay the rest of their team, and Robless. He looked about the same if not worse; something foreign was obviously broadcasting itself into their minds. She wasn't quite sure what Robless saw, but she knew they were both hurting. She cried out to them, with all of the strength she had, but they slipped away. Tam could do nothing but sob, shake, scream even as the last of the immediate pain from the nanites faded. As their devastated faces flashed through her mind again, she felt something snap. Faced with the pain of her friends... no, her family... the pain of everyone she'd known in her millenium of life... she was starting to break. Her memories started to twist and darken, and paranoia soaked into everything, suspicion and pain and anger dripping off of her thoughts.

The little bit that was left of Eris-Tam shattered. Her heart turned against her memories, making her mind add in new, altered, wrong details. Everyone was out to hurt her now, even the people she loved. Even Archelaus. It was their fault for dying, their fault for getting hurt and hurting her with their pain. She could trust no one. She couldn't get close to them, she decided, for they would simply be ripped away from her. It was their fault, she just wanted the pain to stop, please, please, make it go away, make it end, let me go, leave me alone... make the pain go away... it hurts...

"Yes... yes, that's right..."

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett


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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Tue 22 May 2012, 9:30 pm

(( O.o Nuuuuuu!!!! ))
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Mon 28 May 2012, 5:16 pm

"They're here, Eris-Tam. They've come for you. But they will all die trying to make it to you. You see, there are powerful forces at work here. Ones your friends will never defeat. But then maybe it's better that they die, don't you think?"

"Y... yes..." Tam replied, her arms wrapped around her knees, rocking back and forth. She was sitting in her old house, the one she shared with Cassus and their father when she was little. She was rocking in her little corner, the one she always went to whenever Father was on one of his drunken rampages, the place she always went to to hide, to be safe. Cassus would always have to lure her out of her corner, coaxing her with chocolates and sweets even though the worst was over and their Father had calmed or gone away. He was the only one who could convince her to come out, the only one who could tell her that everything was okay and to whom she'd actually listen.

And so that very corner was where she sat now, thinking about everyone, thinking about what was undoubtably going on outside, thinking about how she wished everyone would just leave them alone. It was their fault she was here in the first place.

"Tam, can you feel it? Can you feel the darkness like I do?" it taunted. "Can you feel what's coming? Soon we will be free, very free, and everyone will leave you alone. Everyone will only do what you ask, and you will only follow the orders of two--me, and Verax. You will be valuable to him, as will I. Imagine: no friends to rely on you, no one to up and die on you, nothing that you can't do... Things will be better that way, won't they?"

"Of course they will..." her eyes were glazed and she wanted nothing more than to just sit in her corner and forget about the world, forget about the death and destruction and misery and sit all alone for the rest of time.

There had only ever been one who could coax her out. But she would still stay forever, she would not let herself be hurt anymore. Her friends were her enemies, now. And the enemy of her enemies were now her friends. The parasite, and Verax. They were the ones who would let her be safe and never have to be hurt again.

That must be the answer...

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Mon 28 May 2012, 6:12 pm

Though something in Tam still fought that idea, she felt as though nothing she did would change anything. Her friends would still die. All her people were still lost forever. Everything would end except for her. And so she started counting. Just like she'd counted in her old home, in her old life. 16 empty bottles on the living room floor. 11 bruises. 1 black eye. 7 guns in the case built over the mantle. 8 animal heads on the walls. 13 crashes, probably broken furniture. 5 slammed doors. 2 broken lamps. 3 broken bottles. 9 yells from Cassus's room. 53 times this has happened before.

But this time she was counting something different. She started counting her losses before they happened, preparing herself in advance for what she would lose. Zyria. Caz. D'garar. Emerik. Robless. Archelaus. Cassus. As she went through each face, she cut herself off from them. They were already dead. She had to start letting go of them now. She grieved for each one. She prayed that their souls be delivered to wherever they needed to go. She lost them all. Watched them all die in her head to lessen the losses when they did come.

Once they were gone, she'd have nobody left who could hurt her. No one left who could be used, manipulated, tortured, killed, destroyed, broken to hurt her. And in the end, all she had was herself and the parasite. Everything else was dead. But... could she even trust herself? She backed further into the corner in the old house, putting her hands over her ears, singing the song that Cassus taught her to sing, the one in the language of her people.

Though the dark is falling,
Night to you be kind.
Stars will always shine on you,
Dawn will always comfort you.

Though the dark is falling,
Morning isn't far.
When the morning breaks the night
You'll surely find your way home.

Dreams may haunt your resting
but when morning comes
everything that hurt you then
be nothing but memory.

Hush now, angel
You've nothing to fear
From the dreams that come
When the dark is near.


But this time, when the nightmare was over, there would be no light.

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Tue 29 May 2012, 12:56 pm

Eris-Tam shivered. Tiny, crawling, bug-like thoughts were working their way up her spine, infecting each part of her body, heart, mind, and soul individually. This was what terror felt like. Paranoia. Fear. Everything she loved turned against her one at a time... her memories shifted, altered, changed, and turned and fought against what her heart willed her to believe. First, D'garar. He didn't love her, never really had. His heart belonged to Kassandra, and it always had. Now that she looked back she could see it--she was the one who'd needed him, always. D'garar had never needed her, he'd never needed anyone. Definitely not her.

Next was Caz. How had she let him work his way up her ranks? How could she have let him get close to her so easily? Well, because he was Kazesqui. He was one of her kind. But where were the credentials? How could she have been so stupid as to trust him that easily, just because of his race? She was starting to panic. He's going to betray them! He's been planning to all along!

The Thel-ghan'che was rooting itself deeper, changing her memories on a deeper level, confusing her. Robless. Robless was evil, Tam was sure of it. He killed her people--he was responsible, not the parasite. He was evil on his own, without the Thel-ghan'che. That was it--he'd tricked everyone too. That was it--he hadn't changed, he was just as evil as ever. He wanted to hurt her, maybe kill her, but at least rip everything away from her again. Just like he'd ripped away her people, her friends, everyone she'd known before. And now he was going to do it all again.

Tam was starting to feel sick. She was sinking, falling farther than before, the Thel-ghan'che changing things and confusing her, turning her against herself, so that she couldn't even trust her own mind.

Cassus. Cassus had left her all alone in her father's house. She saw him walking out the door without a word of goodbye. She saw his note in her own hands. She'd weighed him down. She'd made everything harder for him. She was on her own. He couldn't keep on holding her up.

And finally... Archelaus. He'd condemned the Kazesqui to die, abandoning them on their planet's surface so the Alteriians could escape. He was responsible for the death of her friends at Snowdove. He sentenced her to the Kran Til'mok, hoping she would die, wanting to get rid of her like he thought he had 800 years ago. And he'd broken their link. He would have preferred to spend an eternity in the nothingness than continue on with her.

And so... everyone was against her. And so Tam hid deeper, sliding further back into her mind, retreating into herself where someone else could pull the strings. She was just... lost. And in pain. And as her mind reaffirmed again and again that everyone she cared for was out to hurt her, her heart broke a little more each time. Even though the parasite now controlled her, she cried. Tears streamed down her face uncontrollably and her eyes blurred as she stared at her empty hands. She had nothing. Nothing left to live for. Nothing left to fight for.



She stood. The parasite alowed her to get to her feet unsteadily, knees quivering, implant reacting to the jolts of electricity that hit it when she braced herself against the wall. She wound up in human form, stumbling across the length of the cell, mind numb. It was the door she was headed for. The part of the cell most protected by Crenel's automated systems. The laser net. Maybe she could... end herself if she triggered it. She came to the door and laid a hand on it...

Then she threw herself at it, pounding and kicking and doing everything she could to set it off. And she was rewarded by a warning beep, and then a flicker and buzz of electricity as the red glowing grid appeared.

Tam turned around. Each step resounded with finality as she faced away from what would most likely be her death--still too much a coward to take her death head on. She took ragged breaths, tears still swimming in her eyes and sobs still forcing their way up her throat.


Tam fell backwards. She hit the door, the lasers burying themselves in her skin, burning and cutting and searing and boiling and stinging.

And the pain was too much. Still leaning with the lasers digging into her flesh, her world faded out to black.


Hush now, Angel. You've nothing to fear from the dreams that come when the dark is near.

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:46 pm

Deep with in Crenel, the hulking Verax limped. With ten medical drones flitting around him, he approached and stopped before the center cell's major defenses, erecting a shield around himself as he besieged the prisoner inside.

"Eris-Tam! Thel-ghan'che! Heed me! I... I have come to... to beg for your aid." Falling upon his knees, Verax, for the first time in his ancient life, bowed down to another. "As a fellow being of the darkness, a fellow being of chaos, I beg of you, assist me, and let me assist you! Should those who seek your destruction make it here, please, allow me to fight for you, and use the mortal husk you wield as a tool for you! If the worst should come to pass, allow me-Verax, The Dreadlord!- to become your new host!" He looked up, his cape in shreds, his life and strength at the lowest they had ever been. He pleaded more, "Please..... help me....... and let me.... help you....." He had come so far, he had come so close, all he needed was for this last move to play out right, and victory would be his.

But now, without the Parasites help, he would be all but doomed.

~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:49 pm

Tam stirred from where she lay, bloody and broken, on the floor. She moaned quietly, still terrified, still distraught, but it was not she who held the majority of control of her body. The Thel-ghan'che willed her to shift forms in order to dispel the damage done to her body, and restored her to true form, its black and murky influence showing visibly as a hazy, dark cloud inside her. It got to its feet and came to the door, bellowing in a low voice,

"You, the Dreadlord Verax, beg me for help? You stoop so low? Well..." it chuckled darkly, though everything it did, it did darkly, "Maybe it'll be good for you to learn to be humble. You... are now in my power. I can deny you, or I can grant your request... Hm..."

After a long moment, the parasite said quietly, "I will assist you. Now let me free."

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:50 pm

"WITH PLEASURE!" And he shot to his feet, reared back his arms, and in a frenzy of an energy flare storm of nothingness, obliterated everything blocking and protecting the center cell. Then, laughing smashed through any remaining debris. After clearing the way to the cell, Verax bowed, and stepped aside.

"After you, my lord."

~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:53 pm

The Thel-ghan'che stepped forward, pleased more than anything else. Just as it passed Verax, it whirled, grabbing him by the throat with a suddenly clawed fist and pulling him up off his feet in the air, which was quite a feat considering Verax's height. It growled into his ear, "You will not control me. You will not give me orders. You will not threaten me. You need me. If you try anything, I will simply leave or squash you like a bug beneath my foot." The parasite eyed Verax cruelly, and then threw him down against the floor, not caring if it hurt him, and turned away, spreading its arms with a wide grin.

"Freedom..."

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:53 pm

Verax's eyes were wild with...... fear? Under any other circumstance he would have dismissed the very notion of the idea but...... that look..... the evil that the Thel-ghan'che simply radiated, it did frighten him. The fact that it could possibly just pick him up, and toss him aside.... but NO.

I'M NO ONE'S TOOL!

Quickly acting, Verax put himself back on equal footing, trapping both him, and Thel-ghan'che in a rift in space. "You do not control me. You shall not give orders to ME. I agree to your..... requests, but you will do well to remember that I, the Dreadlord, even though I am below you, will not tolerate this, dishonor! Forgive me, if I have angered you but I freed you, just as easily as I can trap you, in a place beyond simple freedom. And... you need ME. You will see... in time.... how much more useful I am as a person.... than a tool." And the world blurred back to Crenel. And he bowed. Again. But this bow was almost humiliatingly low.

Then, flashing back to just moments ago, he stuttered an apology. "I-I'm truly sorry, please... forgive me.... It's just I.... you see.... I'm used to being the one giving the orders, and well... the one picking people up by their neck and tossing them aside. It will take time to get use to this... transition. I hope you can please find it within you to forgive me and allow me some time to amend to this change of situation."

~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:55 pm

The Thel-ghan'che stared Verax down, holding his gaze with a dark fire that seemed to burn straight into the man's twisted, shriveled heart. It was a challenging look, and one that Verax could not look away from.

And then it smiled with humor in its eyes and nodded approvingly to Verax.

"I will be lenient on you for now. You are lucky... I happen to be in something of a good mood. Possibly thanks to you." Then its eyes darkened. "But I know that comes at a price. What is it you desire?" It asked darkly, heavily implying that it would only do as he wished if it pleased the parasite.

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:55 pm

Verax grinned back. "As you may or may not know, I am a Myrionith, a near-extinct race. We are born with immortality, save for death in honorable combat, until we finish what we are destined by name to do." He paused, staring straight into the monster's eyes, through Aurora's body, right into the Thel-ghan'che. "And me? My task..... I will never be able to rest... never find peace nor joy nor true life.... not until......." This was the defining moment of either success or doom.

"Until this universe is mine."
"Until every city, every country, every world, every dimension are all in my hand,
I will never be stopped.

I will rule or I will die.
That
Is my duty, and my destiny."

"And, until now, I had almost no hope, but now..... I can finally say, without a doubt,

In this game of Dimensional Chess,

It is finally my checkmate."


~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 12:57 pm

The Thel-ghan'che stared at Verax for a moment, absorbing the man's words, considering, planning, plotting, testing, until finally, it spoke.

"A worthy purpose. A worthy purpose indeed, but nearly impossible. The forces of light must remain. If it would be fitting for you to only rule them, not destroy them, then I can say there is only one option for your rule which I can imagine.

"The problem is that neither good nor dark can become too powerful. You must let the light remain, or things will be corrected and I can guarantee it will not be in your favor. But first... what you must understand is that no being conceived into this world is pure darkness or pure light. Only those of us placed here by the Universe are. That means that you are not, and you are corruptable. I will do my best to prevent your corruption, as it is something that your enemies will likely try.

"Now... as for being rid of your current problems... you must speak with Eris-Tam. Even I hold respect for her, she fought me valiantly and you will not humiliate one that I hold in such high esteems. She was far stronger than Robless, but I still prevailed. You must speak with her to earn her knowledge. She can better predict what your enemies will do and try. But I will warn you..." The parasite paused, looking deep into Verax, "You must go about this one of two ways. She is broken, and believes that everyone is out to destroy her. You can convince her that you are the one she should trust, that you will keep her protected and give her the power to protect herself. Or, you can frighten her into serving you. I feel this would be your preferred tactic, but I warn you that her resolve to serve will not hold against the pulls of her friends if you choose that path.

"However, it is your choice. Are you ready?"

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 1:02 pm

Verax felt both honored and offended by the Parasite's reaction. "I never sought to destroy light and good and order, only bring them under my control, and bring them to balance. I've always understood that. In this universe, light and order, goodness, reign supreme. I seek to fix that, but few others see the truth. They will not change of their own free will, so I am prepared to take that choice from them, to bring balance, and do what I was born to do."

He thought for a little while over it's words, it's suggestion. What had he intended to do? True... he had planned to use Aurora against his enemies, but how did he? Fear and intimidation, while they could work here, the Dreadlord had no intent to use that path. It would only lead to..... complications. But.... did he dare act submissive? No.... that would be suspicious. If he acted like he was kissing up, she would undoubtedly know it was just that, an act. Just as well, acting overly confident would, at least he thought, would annoy and make her lose both interest and trust in anything he said. But... perhaps if he acted... honored, which he would be, as if he had.....

The plan was set.

The die were cast.

"I am ready." He spoke with confidence. "I am ready to meet the almost sacredly revered Eris-Tam."

~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 1:03 pm

For the first time, the parasite bowed to Verax, not quite so humiliatingly low as Verax had bowed to it, but still bowed nonetheless. "Very well, Dreadlord Verax."

The dark cloud that had before overwhelmed Eris-Tam's appearance now receded, and as Tam's control and consciousness returned she sank to the floor in exhaustion. It was a few moments before she realized that she was out of the cell and that there was anyone else around, and when she did she scrambled to her feet and backed away quickly, defensively. Her mind was thrown into panic.

I... He wasn't supposed to be here. This... isn't right. But then she remembered that the ones who were supposed to come were not those she could trust either. Her mind slowly puzzled through the stream of connections that met it, and then she looked up at Verax. Why is he here? Does he mean to hurt me? To kill me? Does he want to destroy me, like everyone else? She was still backing away subconsciously, and then her back touched the wall. No... no, I can't be weak. I have to protect myself, I have to... But she quickly lost her resolve when she remembered what she had done in the cell. She was afraid, she was terrified- of everyone and everything. She accepted and gave into that fact, embracing it more than she ever had.

The real Eris-Tam would never do that. The true Eris-Tam would stand and fight to her very death if she needed to. She wasn't afraid, not of anything.

But then again, this was not the real Eris-Tam.

"W... w-what... do you want, V-Verax? Why have you c-come?" Her voice sounded shaky, as trembling and weak as her resolve.

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 1:22 pm

Verax kneeled before Eris-Tam. "It is an honor, Lady Somnis." He stood, and took a step back, giving her some more room. He didn't want to frighten her, what kind of first impression would that be? "I apologize, I realize this is all very fast. And what I want and why I've come here is to save you. Right now, your old 'friends' are trying to destroy Crenel. They're set on trying to destroy me, knowing full well that doing so would kill you as well." He was telling the truth... just... his version of it. "I've heard much about you, isn't it true you were sentenced to the Kran Til'mok? I'm sorry, my knowledge of events later on and after the Early Wars are limited, the same man who tried to kill you through that also tried to kill me, one of his closer friends." Words he had never shared were pouring out, he hoped she would hear the sincerity in him.

"I understand what it's like to feel almost entirely alone, without anyone to trust to rely on. That paranoia... that... pain..... it's unbearable." He looked at her, and took a tentative step closer, with true sympathy in his eyes. "Please, come with me. You'll be safe, you'll never have to suffer through this kind of torment again. You won't be alone." He held out his hand. "Would you like... to take a chance? I promise you, if you take a chance with me, things will get better."

"Eris-Tam.... the universe needs you. So come along with me, please. I can help."

~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 1:38 pm

She shied away from his hand at first, trying to detect any bad intentions in his voice and in his eyes. He... he sounded so sincere... but did she even know what sincerity was anymore? She'd thought her friends had been honest and true-hearted and sincere, but now... now she couldn't trust them. So how could she even hope to know whether or not to trust Verax? He seemed honest enough... Archie had sentenced her to the Kran Til'mok, and from the explosions and noise of battle raging outside it certainly seemed possible that they could want destroy Crenel as well.

And... Verax's words were so tempting, so tantalizing... She didn't want to be alone, she wanted to be able to trust someone. But...

"How do I know you won't betray me like they did?!" The words had come spurting out, even though she hadn't intended to say them aloud, only think them. "I... I'm sorry, I... I just..." she looked down, ashamed of herself, cursing her voice.

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 1:50 pm

Verax smiled an honest smile. "No no, it was a fair question, and given what you've gone through, it's perfectly okay to have doubts like that." He lowered his hand and took another small step closer.

"How do you know you can trust me? Because I've gone through the same hell you have, I know what it's like to be used and tossed aside. I don't want anyone else to have to go through that." It was at that moment a little flicker of doubt flashed through is head.

Is this really alright?
Is there anyone who honestly deserves what she's going through?
Can the Parasite be trusted?
Who will bear the burden for doing this?

NO!

I made my choice long ago.

If I back out now, every death, every sacrifice, every wound, word, and drop of blood will be dishonored and wasted, have been for nothing.

I must push on, to the very end, beyond all that is right or wrong, I must go on! For those who have been lost,

I can't stop here.


A single tear fell from his face. "Never again. I don't want anyone else to go through that. Not ever again."

~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."


Last edited by Verax on Fri 13 Jul 2012, 2:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 2:08 pm

Tam... trembled slightly during his words, though she wasn't at all sure why... she wanted to believe him. She wanted to take his hand and not be alone anymore. She wanted to believe that he wouldn't use her, wouldn't toss her aside.

It was hard, but... Tam let herself believe him. She stood up shakily and looked at him, and all that Verax could see there was innocence, and fear, and... a slowly growing trust.

Part of Eris-Tam was incredulous, disbelieving, stunned at what the other parts of her had done. But those parts that needed to be able to trust someone again, the parts that longed for everything to be okay again, for her to be safe and taken care of... they pushed the rational part back with fervor.

She was vulnerable, now, totally prone to whatever Verax decided to do to her. Vulnerable, innocent, lost, and lonely. That was it, that was everything that was inside her at that moment. And she made herself trust him.

"I... I trust you, Verax. I'll come with you."

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 2:59 pm

Verax smiled, happy. "Y-you will? T-thank you.... I understand how... hard it must be, but.... I promise you, I won't let you down, I won't hurt you." They started the long walk back out, feeling....

Actually.... happy?

W-whats going on? What... what are these.... what is this... warmth? I'm... happy? This is... different.... not like when I get what I want.. but... I'm... I'm happy.... for...her?

On the outside, Verax remained pleasant and social, joking, laughing, trying to make Aurora feel more comfortable and at ease. On the inside.... he was being torn apart. Verax.. not Lavernius Erav, the man who Archelaus once knew, but Verax, had never felt happy. All the good feelings given to living beings was the price for his power, or so he thought.

He understood now, why Archelaus fought so hard. How no matter what was thrown at him, he kept going on. How despite the odds, he didn't fight to gain, or fight because he wanted to. He fought because he had to, for all the things and people he cared about. Protecting these things was worth every risk he had taken, and every danger he had ever, and would ever face.

Why Valderis Robless kept on battling. Why he commanded hundreds of thousands to fight and die, and why the soldiers complied. He understood why Robless's will, his conviction to end the Parasite never wavered. How he did not ever for a moment fear death, for death is nothing compared to life without meaning, a life without anything to give it meaning, or for you to help give meaning to.

Why Zyria, and Caz, despite being nothing short of kept apart by the will of the universe, still found it within them, no matter what happened, to persevere and push forward through everything they faced. Because there was always something everyone had.

Why Dreston, even though synthetic life, found it to put his very existence on the edge for people he'd never met, because they were the ones that gave him purpose. And purpose, a reason for living, that was worth fighting for.

How they all managed to keep triumphing over the Dreadlord, despite him being superior in almost every way. They had hope. They had reason to live, to win, to keep moving.

He understood why they fought so hard to destroy the Parasite he had just freed, and so hard to save the woman he had just damned.

NO! It's not too late, it's never too late!

It's too late for me. Darkness cannot drive out darkness.

But you are not darkness, you are
chaos, there are no rules for you! Nothing is ever set in stone!

But why? Why now? Why do I hear this now?


Because now you have a choice.

Verax, taking all this to heart, began to sing, but Eris-Tam could not understand him, only beings like the Parasite, the Protector, the Shadow could understand, for no one else knew the language of the Myrioniths.

It's the end of a day,
The end of an age,
So we just close the book and say 'good bye'.

But the story keeps moving,
It was just the beginning,
Because in life theres no 'the end'.

Let go of the pain,
Let go of the shame,
For this is not truly good bye!

Life still goes on!
Life will never be gone!
The sun will rise, and thus start, another day!

Yes light and darkness never fade,
Do you think that life is not the same?
For life is the story without an end!

Though I've made my choice,
You can all rejoice!
Because whats meant to be,
Will always be,
What's right.


That song was taught from childhood, though the children were just supposed to find it fun when they first learn it. Once they grew older, and heard the new children singing it, they would pause and think to what the word's mean. The song was meant to teach that no matter what happens, life still moves forward. Find happiness when you can, and if something happens, remember that it was probably meant to happen.

Shadows of this forsaken fortress! Fire of the battling ships! If you can carry my message, tell Archelaus, tell all those who seek my and the Parasite's destruction,

If it is meant to be, it will be, so never give up!

Even though I still will fight them, I will accept what life deems must happen.


He turned back to Eris-Tam, smiling. "Sorry, just.. caught up in some memories. Now, let's go see what the universe has in store for everyone."


~*~
"Oh? Did I by some off chance forget to inform you that I'm being slowly possessed by the Myrionith God of darkness and evil, and It wants nothing else to forcibly wipe away all hope and goodness and light in the universe, and the only way I can stop It is by conquering said universe? No? Forgive me, planning universal domination can cause such small matters to slip the mind."
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 3:35 pm

The entire cube shook violently as the Leviathan blew its way through the outer shell of Crenel. It maneuvered into place as its occupants prepared themselves for the trial to come. The cargo bay hissed open, revealing the fully-armed mess of dimensional leaders and other characters.

"We're out of time. Verax is already here, along with most of his generals," Robless said as he walked off the cargo platform into the large hole blown in the side of the black outer shell of Crenel.

Wires and destroyed structural components dangled from the ceiling and walls as the group pushed their way to the control room. Dysfunctional security drones attempted to distract them, but it was no use as they fell apart from lack of maintenance.

Lieutenant Kennan, leader of the squad that captured Krakot, said, "Maybe there isn't too much we have to worry about from the security. Most of it seems to be malfunctioning or disabled already."

Robless agreed with him, but knew they had to carry on to the control room. "It doesn't matter, we still need to get to the control room to check on Aurora and monitor Verax and his forces."

-~-

A few minutes later, they were in the dark, emergency light-lit control room. They looked around for any operational equipment that would be of any use to them; Dreston taking special care to see if he could fix anything himself.

Robless immediately went for the cell block controls and tried checking the security camera. It was crooked and the image appeared sideways, pixelating the picture to the point that nothing definitive could be picked out. He adjusted a few pieces and re-crossed several wires until the video came out visibly.

Nothing. They were too late. All they could hope to do was to intercept Eris-Tam and Verax before they could leave.

"The control room's a dead end, let's move out." Robless still held on to hope as he rushed through the wreckage to the location that his sensors had somewhat pinpointed a living being.

-~-

He pulled himself through a small hole in the ceiling. This floor was much cleaner and in better condition than the ones below, and Robless hoped that it might make the trip just fast enough to save Eris-Tam in time.

"Come on, we have to hurry." Robless helped up the remaining members of the group before moving quickly down the corridor. They were getting close. Five minutes until they would reach the large multi-story hallways that surrounded the cell.

A minute too long, he thought.

~*~
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us." - Marianne Williamson
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PostSubject: Re: Crenel, the Prison Planet   Fri 13 Jul 2012, 3:45 pm

Tam smiled like a young child, her worries starting to disappear. She held a certain hostility in her mind for everyone, still- everyone except Verax. He had been the one to save her. He had promised that he would protect her and take care of her and make sure that she was never alone. The others had abandoned her here, in this awful place. She didn't owe them anything, and she hated them in her mind. Was afraid of them and hurt and angry...

Just as Verax and Tam reached one of the outside exits to Crenel, she felt a swelling of power in her chest. It confused her at first, but then she understood. Archelaus had gotten in, gotten to Crenel. She turned to Verax with a worried, panicked look.

"Verax... they're here. Archelaus and the others. I know they are."

After a pause, she added, "I'll... I'll fight them, if you want. The... closer I am to Archelaus the stronger I'll be... if you want me to, I will..."

~*~
“This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.”
― Terry Pratchett
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