Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Jun 28, 2018 5:19:08 GMT
Leslie jumped in surprise when Raikou appeared beside her. She could feel all her hair standing on end from the charge he gave off and smell ozone in the air. "You can teleport! Get behind her, you misbegotten bastard!" Leslie pushed Raikou, peering out when the flames turned away. Ardragas was drawing the fury's fire. He scrambled blindly, taking sparks. Without sight, he couldn't find cover. The Fury advanced, whip raised high. She brought it down over his bare chest, leaving shallow furrows.
"You are tough! That's good, you will withstand much punishment before your death as well as after!" She cackled, preparing another strike. Her whip never came down. Xun's miniature star struck the hand holding the writhing weapon. Flesh resistant to heat went up in flames as it was subsumed in the burning ball of plasma. With an agonized shriek, she dropped the whip, gripping a half-skeletonized hand clad in molten armor. Leslie took her chance to vault over the cage. "Tag out! It's my turn!" She yelled to Ardragas, who backed off with a nod, feeling the shallow lacerations on his chest. "Any time now, bullet-spitter." Leslie growled back at Raikou.
Yuhao saw Raikou rush at the enemy and while did manage to dodge for a while eventually he was hit by the flames and was thrown back while releasing quite a bit of smoke. Yuhao gripped his sword tightly in his left hand and jumped out from behind his cover and threw out a stellar slash as a smokescreen and used the cover to create three full sized stars and have them hide themselves out of sight. After that he dodged around the flames using the most minute amount of energy to dodge that was needed. While he dodged he also shot out several stellar waves to try to speed up the process of the enemy running out of stramina. While he did this he also waited for the Fury to tire if she showed any signs of exhaustion he would have the stars attack her to finish her. If she didn't tire he would use the stars to provide cover for him to take cover again.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Jul 10, 2018 4:25:28 GMT
"Yes! Finally, one tastes punishment!" The fury puffed out her chest with pride when she finally landed a direct hit. Yuhao's stellar slash smashed the air back out of her lungs, leaving her gasping for air. "Ardrugas! Four o'clock!" Leslie called and Ardrugas nodded, rushing in from the fury's flank. She raised her arms in defense, defending her face from pummeling until Leslie hacked at her side. The blade sank in and bit deep, drawing a furious scream as the fury uselessly flailed. Leslie released her sword and jumped back as the stars came barreling in.
"If you melt my sword I'll kill you!" She yelled to Yuhao. The fury raised her arm to burn away the stars, but Ardrugas' fist cut across her face from the side, sending cruel canines flying from her mouth and dropping her to her knees. The stars all met on her face. Her screams were mercifully short lived before she toppled over backwards. Leslie knelt a good distance away, waiting for the smoke to clear. When it did, she saw a burnt skull, almost human but with jutting jaws and oversized teeth.
"I doubt even a demon can get up from that." She pointedly looked at their guide, who shrugged. "Some can." She was staring at her fallen comrade, but Leslie couldn't read her face. She gave it a few more seconds and walked over to the body, wrenching her sword free. "Raikou is alive." Ardrugas reported. "His men are taking him back to the lobby. That fire... it changed him. He was swearing and thrashing. I mean, we didn't know him well, but I don't think it was just the pain. That fire is bad news." Ardrugas looked glum as he looked over the scorched battlefield. Leslie gave him a peck on the cheek on her way to the cage. "We'll be fine. I got the keys, so we're getting off this level. And now we know what to look out for if somebody else down here shoots that stuff at us."
Leslie paused on her way to the cage to look at Yuhao. "Good job, I guess. I'm sure Ardrugas and I could have done it alone, but it would have been a real pain. Thanks." She glared at Schísimo until the fury jumped off of the cage and swung it open. The cage's inhabitant popped out like he was packed on a spring and rolled a few times before leaping to his feet. "Yes! Yes! Freedom!" He howled, stretching his bruised limbs. Like all the souls they had seen along the way, he was naked and covered in cuts. "Yes, yes. Stop stretching." Leslie covered her face. "What? Oh, fuck. I surrender, so you fools move along!" The disciple of Andromalius knelt to take the fury's clothes for himself and an elevator came rumbling up from the floor. "Next stop is layer of Dantalion." Schísimo growled, standing by the doors. Leslie nodded and entered, Ardrugas quickly following.
Yuhao removed his sheath from his belt then tossed his sword up in the air and the sword fell in the sheath gracefully. He glanced over at the fallen fury and threw one final star to completely eliminate the remains. He didn't know if there was still some life in the corpse but he didn't want to come back and have to fight her again. He gave the room one final glance and entered the elevator. He gave the group a nod in acknowledgement then began to meditate to circulate his qi to allow it to recover. He felt that fight had brought him closer to gaining a insight and yet so far. He just needed that one moment to invoke a understanding that would allow him to advance further.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Jul 24, 2018 22:52:44 GMT
The elevator trundled onward to the next floor. "A lot less crowded in here now." Leslie took advantage of the space to stretch. "Wasted space." Schísimo growled and the elevator constricted so that it barely fit the people within it. "What is your problem?" Leslie growled. She didn't mind getting pressed into Ardrugas so much, but the fury's brimstone stink was filling her nose and she wanted to be much further away from Xun. "Sinners belong in cages." Schísimo grinned back at her.
Leslie would have thrown a punch if she could move. Soon enough, the elevator doors opened and Leslie shoved her way out first, stepping onto rolling hills under a dim pink haze of sky. "You know, you don't seem to be doing a whole lot of actual guiding." She snarled at their demon guide. "I do much. I give warnings. Warning one is do not fight me. Warning two is to be wary of the masks." Schísimo tapped the whip at her waist, but Leslie had just realized what she stood on. The entire ground was formed of faces, faces of every color and shape. Most of them appeared human, but many were monstrous.
"What the fuck..." Leslie looked for ground that wasn't faces, but failed to see any. "Souls made into masks. Wear them and you become them. Useful... dangerous. Soul seeks to take body." The fury crouched and peeled up a mask. She waved it around, looking into the eyes that stared endlessly in horror. Leslie covered her mouth, stumbled back into Ardrugas' arms. "You're so lucky you can't see right now." She gurgled. "Wear one?" Schísimo offered a pale grey mask with a massive staring eye over a nearly toothless mouth to Xun.
Yuhao opened his eyes and looked at Schisimo and with a quick action withdrew the sword and sliced the mask clean in two without the blade even touching her. "I'd rather not the mask would not go too well with my outfit if I do say so myself," he joked as he jumped to his feet still recovering qi as he looked over the room taking each mask in quickly and examining them. "Man talk about faces only a mother could love," he quipped and reached down to pick up one of the beast like masks while covering his hand in a protective layer of stellar qi. He then turned to Schisimo and tossed the mask towards her. "So let me guess this is our fate if we lose on this floor?" He asked as the protection around his hand faded.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Aug 10, 2018 3:05:49 GMT
"Yes. Dantalion always wants more masks." The fury dropped the two halves of the cut mask, ignoring the clear pain in its bifurcated eye. She looked at the new one, a wolfen face in a permanent snarl, jaws still wet with drool. She pat it and set it down while Leslie led Ardrugas up the hill. "I need a better look at this place." She explained as she peaked it. She took a look over the landscape and hissed through her teeth.
"Xun, you'll want to see this." They were effectively on an island, hovering in the middle of a great void, another island of masks only visible in the hazy distance. "Is there even a bottom?" Leslie wondered out loud. "Yes. Tartarus. Deepest layer of hell. 9 day's fall from next lowest layer." Schísimo landed beside them, looking out over it. "Must fly." She bent over and cracks and pops began escaping her spine. Slowly two wings unfolded from her back, greasy black things both feathered and clawed. Casually, she took off for the other island, leaving them behind.
Leslie looked down at the ground. There were indeed flying creatures here. "Ardrugas, if I lose control, I need you to pin me down and rip off the mask. I'll get you one too, but I'm testing it." She carefully chose two masks. One for herself, something mostly human with a beak for a nose and feathers in place of hair, and the other for Ardrugas, something like a bat but eyeless to fit his own face. "I trust you to handle it." He stroked her hair and took the mask, feeling it in his hand. It felt like real flesh, slightly fuzzy to the touch. "Xun, find something that looks like it can fly!" He yelled back to the stellar warrior.
"Alright, I'm trying first." Leslie closed her eyes and put the mask to her face. Instantly she felt the change. She lost inches of height and her body lightened. It wasn't just becoming thinner. Her very bones felt light, and her heavy armor vanished away. Hopefully that would return when she removed the mask. She opened her eyes and nearly toppled from the sight. Her vision felt wrong. She was seeing colors that didn't exist, all in more detail than her mind could handle. She covered her face with black wings, only registering what they were after a moment.
Her eyes opened again against her own will. Her heartbeat picked up and a wave of panic that was not her own flooded through her. The other soul demanded they take wing and fly far, far away from here. Her wings flapped open. She could fly on those. She could fly forever, and never touch the ground and never come back! She mindlessly stirred her wings until Ardrugas' arms wrapped around her. "Are you alright?" He asked. "You have feathers... all over." His voice picked up with amusement. He tweaked a tailfeather. He was lucky he couldn't see her glare. She couldn't keep it up anyway.
"Yeah, you better hope you have clothes in your transformation or I'll mess with you back." She kept a careful eye on both Ardrugas and Xun in case the host souls took control. Ardrugas placed his mask to his face and was changed in the blink of an eye. He wasn't even humanoid, just a short, fat eyeless bulldog of a bat. His fangs stuck up past his nose as he moved his mouth, forming nothing but short barks. Well crap, he couldn't even talk like this. "Just you now, Xun." Leslie caught herself absentmindedly scratching her head with her foot and stomped it to the ground. The other soul was influencing her already.
Yuhao walked among the masks eyeing each one carefully. He didn't want to be without the ability to use his sword if in a pinch so he had to find one that was humanoid with opposable thumbs. After a minute or two he laid eyes upon a perfect mask. It was of dark purple scales and red eyes. If he was right it was a creature he had heard stories of and would be perfect to use. He removed his sword from his side and set it on the ground for safe keeping. He placed his mask over his face and even before the changes occurred he felt a immediate change in his senses being able to see, hear, and smell beyond reasons he could never have predicted. Still that was only a small matter and after only a microsecond of wearing the mask dark violet scales raced down his body replacing the robes he were wearing before. After seconds of transforming Yuhao stood changed. Gone was the youth he was and replaced with the body of that of a Dragonoid Warrior. He stood much taller around 7 feet and his body was covered head to toe in dragon scales while his face didn't grow scales instead it turned a light purplish grey and his eyes became red and the pupil became a black slit. Right when he was about to reach down for his sword two tails shot out and along with a pair of scaled and leathery wings that were big enough to wrap his entire body in. He gave the other two a a fanged smile and grabbed his sword and took off towards the other island.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Aug 25, 2018 6:15:58 GMT
Leslie felt a stirring in her chest as she stretched her wings. They caught the breeze rushing from the abyss below like sails, and she was airborne. Her heart picked up, but in panic or elation she could not tell. Which emotions were her own? That was truly the worrying thing about this. The other soul seemed to direct her in the air, not letting her look back at the others as the soared over to the other island. "That looks like the apostle." She called to the others. In the center of a small island, less than 100 years across, he sat. Eyes beyond a human's ability saw a massive man sitting cross-legged, masks strung on a necklace lying on his bare chest.
Behind her, Ardrugas was as blind as ever, but he could see. Sounds escaped his mouth, coming back to his ears with information. Creatures like this were common underground, but to experience it was mind-melting. It was like seeing, something he had never done. All he could do was following Leslie, or the shape he assumed was her. I want to see her, as she actually is. The thought rose unbidden. The two landed, clumsier in Ardrugas' case. Leslie ripped off her mask at once, returning to normal. "Ardrugas, you okay? Take it off!" She called to him. He didn't respond, sitting still with his head turned up at her. "Ardrugas?" She nervously glanced at the apostle, who only watched, a small smile spreading across his face.
Yuhao landed on the ground and with a powerful earth shattering roar he ripped off the mask and turned just as Leslie managed to rip off hers. He was about to charge after the apostle when he noticed the commotion with Ardrugas and Leslie. "Shit, Leslie help your boy toy. I'll buy some time against the enemy," He ordered and then prepared himself to fight. He rushed forward at the enemy launching a open palm attack towards his center while also prepared to dodge at a moments notice.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Sept 2, 2018 1:41:22 GMT
Leslie just gave Yuhao an Avalonian bird, holding up her fingers in a V. Her anger was sparked partially by fear. She had felt the pull that seemed to now be captivating Ardrugas. "Ardy. Come on. Snap out of it." She edged towards him. He was still silent, like an especially hideous gargoyle. "Ardy?" She asked and he jumped off the ground, wings spreading. "Okay, hard way it is. Sorry!" She tackled Ardrugas to the ground while Yuhao initiated battle.
His palm strike caught the disciple rising, sliding him back over the masks. "I match thee, thus for thus." His voice was so deep it seemed to vibrate the island. His fingers found the eyeholes of a horrific simian mask and pulled it to his face. In an instant, he was a 7 foot tall monkey in a red loincloth, ponytail and tail decorated with bells. He started with a snap kick, aimed at Yuhao's face, followed up with an axe kick while his foot was high.
Yuhao was caught off guard by the snap kick however luckily the kick flung him out of the way so the axe kick missed him. He rolled a bit then picked himself up and wiped a trail a blood from the side of his mouth. "You made my clothes filthy," he complained then drew his sword and pointed it at the enemy. He flipped it in the air while spinning around and caught the blade in his left hand while slicing through the air to deliver a stellar slashed aimed at the mask then charged forward to unleash a devastating combo towards his vitals and tendons using the effect of the stellar slash as cover.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Sept 4, 2018 4:33:05 GMT
Yuhao's slash met the mask even as the quick reflexes of the monkey warrior kept him from being cut apart at the tendons. The monkey's eyes bugged in surprise as they slowly slid apart. The mask fell in half at the masked man's feet. "Oh, so you wish to use swords?" The man pulled a different mask to his chest, steely and hardened, two red compound eyes staring out without comprehension.
In an instant, he was a massive praying mantis with an exoskeleton of steel, waving oddly shaped arms, like chainsaws with no chains. Little flames came to life around the chainsaws and began to whirl around them at insane speeds, creating a burning blur around each, a fire chainsaw of impossibility. In the flash, the two arms lashed out at Yuhao, attempting to simultaenously bisect him at the waist and decapitate him.
Yuhao spun in the air and dodged by going between the two blades. He landed on his right hand a few feet from the Apostle and flipped back up to a standing position. "Leslie hurry up with removing the mask," Yuhao yelled back while eyeing the opponent to prepare for the next onslaught. He could already tell this would take all three of them to beat unless he did something drastic. He needed somebody to keep him from grabbing more masks after he cut off the ones he destroyed. He was about to charge forward to attack again when a violet color caught his eyes. "Shit," Yuhao whispered as he realized what he needed to do to buy more time. He jumped doing a flip in midair while grabbing the mask he was previously wearing and slamming it onto his face. Before he had even landed he was already transformed and snarling at the apostle. With a loud roar Yuhao charged forward swinging his sword to decapitate the apostle.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Sept 5, 2018 20:08:31 GMT
"I'm working on it!" Leslie yelled. She had Ardrugas pinned under her, but she couldn't feel a seam where mask ended and body began. "She cannot." The mantis metallically hummed. "Only those who put the mask on can remove it." His arms flicked up, catching Yuhao's blade. The increased strength of the draconic form sent him skidding back. He just laughed, sounding like a chainsaw going in short bursts.
Meanwhile, Leslie stared down at Ardrugas. He had to remove it? She hesitated for a moment before taking off her helmet. She got off of him and put her face to his. "Ardrugas. This is my face. You can see it now, can't you?" She couldn't see anything in that mess of jowls and fangs, but one wing slowly moved. It hooked the mask on a claw and ripped it away. "I can't really process it, but I'm glad I saw you." He smiled up at her.
"Sappy stuff later. Back Yuhao up!" Leslie hid her smile with her helmet and lunged into action. Her massive sword swung and staggered the mantis when he blocked it. "Understood!" Ardrugas rushed in and landed a punch to its jaw that opened it wide. "Sorry Yuhao. Now we've got your back." He gave a thumbs up and threw another punch, making the mantis hiss.
Yuhao growled back in acknowledgment to the two then dropped his sword to deliver a plethora of claw, leg, and tail attacks at the apostle. The draconic blood in him wanted combat and it was eroding at his mind to get it. The only option he had was to allow the dragnoid warrior to have free control while he allowed his mind and soul to retreat into his dantian to recover from the erosion. While he was still able to tell what was going on outside he was unable to control his body. He knew this was a extremely reckless tactic but it was the only was to have a good chance. He had to let the beast have control just for a little while or else he feared this apostle would win.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Sept 8, 2018 6:46:38 GMT
The mantis held his burning claws high to block Yuhao's sword, but that was not what met him. Yuhao's claws dug into his metal arm and pried it free, opening him up for a relentless barrage. Each hit made his armor crumple further, pushed him closer to the edge. Finally he willingly jumped away, right to the corner of their small arena, and ripped his mask away.
His true body was left bleeding, one arm missing and an eye closed from swelling. "One more mask." He threw his necklace off the edge, keeping only one. A leonine mask met his face and he stood fierce, prideful even with his injuries. Golden fur grew, his body shape barely changing under it. The sun-gold warrior lashed out his claws, driving back Ardrugas, and stared at Yuhao in voiceless challenge.
Yuhao got down on all fours and bared his fangs in challenge. He then lifted himself off the ground with his wings and dashed forward and gave a feint attack at his chest with his claws then threw a punch aimed at his face. Not even caring if his foot connected he focused qi into his tail like he usually did with his sword then launched it at the foe. However unlike the usual stellar qi Yuhao normally used this qi was now reddish orange and had a flame like quality to it. While this technique still possessed the same firepower of his Stellar slash this dragonic slash was a entirely new type of qi.
Meanwhile in his Dantian Yuhao meditated focusing his senses on the battle and fending off the erosion from the mask. His qi swirled around him as he himself was deep in the star that he had created in his dantian from cultivating. With every bit of corrosion he fought he slowly began to examine the soul force of the mask to understand the beast within.
Post by Prophet_of_Plague on Nov 4, 2018 4:07:29 GMT
The leonine man laughed when Yuhao fell into a bestial posture. “Yes… perfect.” He spread his arms. The fist scraped his head, missing by a single twitch of his neck. The tail he couldn’t dodge so easily and it passed through his arm, making it twitch and then hang limp.
“You feel it, don’t you? The power that hell grants. This is what will give you victory. They understand too, but they don’t have the bravery to take this power for themselves.” He loomed large, eyes glowing. Leslie came in swinging her sword and he could to little to stop it from finishing off the arm Yuhao had taken. He roared in pain and staggered back.
“As weak as they are, they do grant you numbers. I will not allowed them to take me though. You, warrior of the stars! Finish it with that power of yours!” Golden ki poured forth from the roaring lion and he lunged right at the dragon, swinging claws leaving a burning arc in their wake.
yuhao licked his lips as the golden lion charged after him. He infused his claws with extremely thick dragonic qi then he took flight with his wings attacking the lion with a cross shaped slash at the adversary. However while focusing on the offensive Yuhao neglected to defend himself and took the attack head on. Yuhao was thrown across the island and just stopped short of falling off. He dropped to one knee as several scales were missing and bleeding. Through ragged breath Yuhao waited to see what his attack did to the Lion.
Deep within Yuhao's dantian Yuhao coughed up blood as his physical body took such a devastating blow. In that moment however the corrosion stopped and he was able to finnally gain some insight into the mask and even begin reading some of the memories present within the mask.