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  #151  
Old Jun 30th, 2013, 10:27 PM
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The others continue to debate Zilira's binding while Jester and Morgan 'talk', although Vulcar does not join, looking both thoughtful and pensive, his hands clasped together. It isn't until Celes places a hand on his arm that he appears to catch up with the conversation. The two exchange brief smiles before focussing on the debate at hand.

Jester taps Mirik's shoulder with the back of his hand to get his attention. "Do you really think it's a good idea to discuss her like this when she's sitting here in front of us? Especially given what they've said about what she is compelled to do. Unless you fancy explaining to the various Kings and Queens of Aheka why their representatives were murdered by a dead Goddess of course."

Mirik rolls his eyes. "Crudely put as always Jester." The Dragon's eyes sweep over Zilira before settling on Vulcar. "Though he is right your majesty. If you truly value her as kin as your words suggest, rather than the slave she appears to be, then perhaps it would be best to send her away so as to avoid any...unintended incidents?"

Vulcar considers for only a moment before nodding. "Very well." He looks to Zilira. "Leave the room and don't eavesdrop in any way. I'll inform you of what we discussed that I can pass on later."

The Drow Demi-Goddess seems hesitant and nervous but there is only a slight pause before she bows her head slightly. "Ok." Shadows envelop her, leaving only her grey eyes visible for a moment before even they are engulfed and the vaguely Zilira-shaped shadow sitting in Morgan's chair appears to be sucked into a nearby shadow.

There is a pregnant pause before Jester gives Tiaan a significant look, however it is Malhas who speaks up. "God-blind." A strange sensation passes through everyone at his words, not unlike the sensation one got hen casting magic themselves. At the strange look from others he gives a nonchalant shrug. "I like my privacy and I don't trust any of you." Kala gives him a sharp look at that last comment, forcing a sigh out of him. "I don't trust most of you." This time he ignores her sharp look, although the keen eyed would notice him wince slightly at the same time that Kala smirks slightly. Malhas' words are a little terser this time. "I'd suggest backing it up with your own as well."

Once Tiaan and others have cast their own privacy and planar blocking spells Jester turns to Morgan. "Spill it Wainraith."

~MTWC
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  #152  
Old Jul 1st, 2013, 03:43 AM
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Morgan doesn't respond to Jester immediately, lost in thought sparked by the look Vulcar and Celes had shared.
”I can't sorry. Not I won't for some reason, but I've been rendered incapable of passing on the information to anyone for any reason. We'll see what we can do about that first before I go all roundabout and annoying to test the boundaries and try to get it across.”
With the protections layered on the room he can't be certain Ghost is watching in and aware it's time to do that, nor is he certain that a sending spell can target a being spread across the world like a drop of oil on water. Gripping the edge of his cloak Morgan fires off a Sending to Syoban requesting he “tell Ghost to unlock the vault.”
”While we wait to see if that worked we might as well get started on the more awkward path. I had the information locked away in order to make sure it couldn't fall into the wrong hands, especially Zera's. I think it's pretty obvious precisely what that information is, but if anyone wants to spell it out for anyone here not very familiar with me or this situation, feel free to do so.”
The lanky mage crosses his arms across his stomach. His thoughts are pensive and troubled.
”Slavery is wrong. This is a concept that is learned in childhood and accepted, as far as most are concerned, by the entire world. It's one I agree with wholeheartedly. But we don't live in a simple world and there are problems with the idea of freeing Zilira. I believe there is a high degree of certainty that Zilira hid Zera's identity from the rest of the world at the order of a previous Halvan king. Zilira can sense people of the Royal Halvan bloodline, yet we had to learn of Zera's origin as a Halvan bastard via a third party and our own deductions.
That isn't the thing that concerns me. Royals are notorious for keeping their indiscretions on the down low. What concerns me is that Zera has acquired information that we can't account for a source, information acquired before he became the dangerous and powerful man he is today. The source of that information could conceivably be Zilira, who could perhaps have even had a roll in shaping him as a person, whether it be under orders she had no choice to obey or under her own initiative. At a stretch this whole situation could be one of her engineering in order to free her of her chains. She's certainly had plenty of time to work up a plan.”

It was one of the first things that Morgan had said about her. Just because his kneejerk reaction is distrust does not mean that it's always misplaced and wrong. Saying these things now seemed sick to him, about someone who's been a slave for all this time, and someone whom he's considering spending the rest of his life with. But it is necessary. He can't spare his own feelings any more than he would anyone else.
”Everything I know about her says that any role she had was a product of her enthrallment rather than of her own free will. But the possibility is still there, and I wonder if we can ever know for sure until she is freed.”
He drags his eyes up from the tabletop to look across at Shade and then the three elves.
”A few of you are old enough to have known her before she was enslaved. Shade, she was your apprentice for a time. What say you to her nature in those days?”
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  #153  
Old Jul 1st, 2013, 10:05 AM
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Nevh straightened herself as Morgan spoke, feeling a certain pride and wonder toward the mage.
What he was going through this very moment was something she deemed way more impressive than vision he had mustered.
He proving himself to be a bigger man than he was, seeing past himself, his heart, and prepared to die inside and live in darkness for the world's future.
Hopefully his chains of servitude wouldn't end up as cold as hers had been.

She was also of course pleased to see that he had come to accept the warnings she had given him concerning what little she knew of his lover, despite the strong reaction he initially had against them. If anything, it confirmed a degree of trust. It was a cruel possibility, but indeed too dangerous to ignore.
She joined her hand and reached out slightly.
"Thank you, Morgan. May Her heart be true."
It was perhaps not too much to hope for.

She had hoped then to hear how Vulcar the First felt about his wife, but she imagine Shade might have had a good enough idea of Her deeper personality. Though what She was then and what She now is would likely be subject to great changes. Being isolated in some pit for this long tended to leave a certain madness to people. Some could change in the most unexpected ways, she had seen it, and it was rarely for the better.

Either way, hopefully that particular matter would be resolved before long. There were other crucial matters to get through and they could only keep all these important people anchored to this room for so long.

Last edited by Blue; Jul 4th, 2013 at 10:25 AM.
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  #154  
Old Jul 4th, 2013, 07:35 AM
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Shade shrugs in response to the question. "I'm not sure it matters all that much. Nine hundred years is a long time, even for a Deity, and more than enough to change a person. Let alone what nine hundred years of imprisonment and slavery will do to a person. Personally, I'd be worried she might lash out or relapse. She was born among the Fiends after all, and was even a part of the original Fiendish Pantheon. That she was the only one of them to switch sides was more out of dissatisfaction with the treatment of herself and the Drow than wanting to help free the Humans. She changed during the fighting though, like Ruaci did, though neither of them were among the worse of their Kin in the first place admittedly. Given the situation with the Drow I'd be more concerned about her somehow being involved. There's no way to listen in on the prayes a Deity receives or the messages they send."

"She can't do anything about that." Seneca interrupts. "One of the first things Vulcar did was forbid her from communicating with - or even talking about - her worshippers. It was her worshippers who reported her death, since her silence combined with her lack of granting spells lead them to one 'obvious' conclusion, which was exactly what Vulcar wanted."

"I'd like to alleciate fears, but I'm afraid I didn't really know her. Drow never exactly got on very well with the other Elves." Tiaan sounds genuinely disappointed as he speaks, with the two other Elves nodding in agreement. "Granted, she wasn't as bad as most, but-"

"She had a part to play." The (to Morgan, Nevh and the others) familiar voice of Samael seemed to be coming from all around, although it was not telepathic. "And all the world is a stage." The small-horned Tiefing image he used before appears in the centre of the table, facing Morgan. Literally in the table at that as his bottom half passes through it. He glances at Shade, or rather, in his general direction. "It is refreshing to see you Alistair...well...I say 'see'..."

"And who in the hells are you?" Jester demands.

"A Ghost of the Demongate Wars and Survivor of the Eighth's magic. You may call me Samael if you must have a name." He turns his attention back to Morgan. "This will hurt again. Though in a different way. Are you sure?" Assuming Morgan agrees he will nod. "Very well." In the blink of an eye he is standing in front of Morgan, although given what they knew of him they knew he wasn't actually there. Physically at least. He places his hands on either side of Morgan's head. It is Morgan's reaction that lets them know when he begins whatever it is he's doing.

~MTWC
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  #155  
Old Jul 4th, 2013, 09:03 AM
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”And all the men and women merely players.”
They have their exits and their enterances.
Short though a mortal life may be Morgan hopes his turn on the stage will leave it for the better.
”Personally I always liked Touchstone. Painful truths go down better with a little comedy.”
And sometimes painful truths could only be swallowed in such ways or others would block them out. Such as what people would think of Morgan for essentially co-opting the meeting to deal with what could be viewed as his own personal agenda. Or worse how Vulcar and Zilira would feel about Morgan's actions. Would either feel betrayed or happy? He can't see how he could have done it any other way.
Nothing for it but to see it through once begun.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Samael
"This will hurt again."
Morgan wearily rolls his eyes.
”Naturally.”
Heaven forbid someone thinks “hey I'm going to be rooting around in someone's mind. Since pain is merely in the mind anyway, why don't I just tweak the spell or whatever to take away the sensation of pain,” or something like that.
”Well get on with it. I've got one, hopefully two, more visions to go through today anyway, might as well get all the brain beating out of the way in one fell swoop.
Oh, and... thank you.”


The sensation is no more pleasant than last time. Less probably, though Morgan isn't inclined to try to compare them. Just like last time it starts out as an annoyance, but builds like an incoming tide. His teeth squeak as he clenches his jaw. Face reddens. Brow furrows. A few minutes pass as he squeezes his eyes shut and does his best to ride out the waves of pain and sensation.
Finally it crests and his mind is again free of the influence. The mage blows out a gusty breath and finds, much to his relief, that like the last time once it's over, it's over. Once he gets his breathing and heart rate back under control the worst is past and his headache is only somewhat worse.
”Agh, OK. A useful ability but forgive me if I never want to do that again.”
The mage thumbs out some tear that gathered at the corners of his eyes. He's about to stand when he pauses. A mental pennycopper drops and he realizes something.
”You know. If you can penetrate all these wards, why didn't you just tell everyone?”

With sigh a grunt he pushes himself to his feet and turns to face left. To face Vulcar square on.
”You, Vulcar Halva the second, hold the leash of Minlolth Zilira whether you like it or not.
You are also responsible for the realm you've inherited, whether you like it or not.
I don't envy you either.

Would you, Vulcar, choose to free Minlolth Zilira from her imprisonment and bondage? She who has been your shield, your confidant, your agent and your tutor. Would you do this knowing that she would then be free to do as she will? Free to ignore your orders and consider your requests. To leave here and never return in your lifetime. To spit vitriol in your face if that be her mien. Possibly even putting your realm in danger should she choose to seek vengeance or join with Zera or the Fiendish Pantheon.
Would you, in full consideration of the potential consequences, choose to set this in motion here and now?”

Technically Morgan didn't need Vulcar's permission or consent to speak, or to act, but in his mind this was something that should be Vulcar's choice. He was closest to Zilira, he probably knew her best, and he was the one put most at risk in freeing her.
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Last edited by SpatulaOdoom; Jul 23rd, 2013 at 01:11 PM.
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  #156  
Old Jul 6th, 2013, 04:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgan
"You know. If you can penetrate all these wards, why didn't you just tell everyone?"
"All these wards, save the one that shields Shade, can not keep me out, but getting to this room is difficult. Think of my consciousness as a cloud and this room as being at the end of a long, narrow labyrinth. I can only stretch so much and reaching this room effectively requires I 'condense' my consciousness."

"Your 'consciousness'?" Tiaan appears intrigued.

There is a slight pause where it looks like Samael may just ignore the question, before he nods. "When Fisali's spell tore my soul from my body it did not return it like it did Shade's or Revenant's. I exist as an immaterial psionic consciousness without a physical body or form. You could say I am a mere thought."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgan
"Would you, in full consideration of the potential consequences, choose to set this in motion here and now?"
There is a long, pensive pause before Vulcar gives an answer. "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. That was impressed on me as a child by my many tutors, who said I would have to make decisions that harmed some in order to help most. That part of me feels as if to release her would be to harm the many for the benefit of a few - something no King should do." Though he pauses again, it is a thoughtful pause, making it obvious he is not finished. "And yet...how can I claim moral authority as King if I not only break one of the few laws all nations agree on, but do so towards an ancestor who has saved my life twice and supported me all my life? No matter choice I make it is a risk, but by keeping her imprisoned I not only risk doing a great wrong in keeping her chained, but I do her a great wrong in not trusting her. If ever there was a time to risk it then it is now." He looks up to meet Morgan's eyes. "So how do we break her chains?" It is obvious by the grumblings and expressions of a few present that not everyone is comfortable with the decision, but no one speaks out against it.

~MTWC
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Last edited by Makenshi; Jul 6th, 2013 at 04:04 PM.
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  #157  
Old Jul 6th, 2013, 06:23 PM
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Morgan takes a deep breath, only now realizing he'd been holding it.
"It might seem like the right choice is different than the smart choice, but in the long run they are one and the same.
True magic bindings required to last for any length of time requires a physical keystone to anchor the magic in."

He walks over to kneel beside princess Celes's chair.
"It is interesting that you chose to gift Celes and Vulcar with engagement bands. More of your people's prophecies, or just coincidence? The Halva men have had the control over Zilira for centuries, but the Halva women have had the key to her freedom. I'm sorry Celes but I'm going to have to ask you to trade your engagement band for something else. I'm afraid it is very likely you won't be getting it back either. If it's any consolation, it's going to a good cause."
Morgan (presumably) takes the ring and walks back to his seat, though he does not sit down.
"The focus can be unraveled one of two ways. Careful study and the use of True Magic, or physical destruction, the latter of which would result in a dangerous energy release and require the use of a very powerful weapon. The examples given of weapons that might destroy the ring are Witherbane, The Unnamed Blade at full release, or Heartbreaker.
I suspect the one most likely to have both the True Magic expertise and such a weapon, as well as the ability to hide or protect himself from Zilira is one Coiya Halva."
Morgan turns an eye to Bane, grinning slightly. ”Unless of course the Sword in the Dark is a bit of an exaggeration and he owns a mere sword rather than a Sword, if you catch my drift.”
Now that they're moving, now that it was happening Morgan can't help but feel a little giddy. He can't see Zilira again until it's done, or let her see him. It wouldn't take more than a second or three for her to figure it out that the ring was missing and what she'd been told not to listen in on. But it is going to be worth it.
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Last edited by SpatulaOdoom; Jul 23rd, 2013 at 01:11 PM.
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  #158  
Old Jul 8th, 2013, 06:58 AM
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Celes looks a little disappointed to be giving away her gift already, but she does not hesitate in handing it over, once again sharing a smile with Vulcar.

Bane looks genuinely affronted for a moment before laughing at Morgan's question, though the other Children are slower to lose their frowns. Perhaps insulting someone's sword was considered to be very rude to the Children? "His sword is made of the Shadow Planes themselves. The blade thinner than a speck of dust. It might not tt=extend to hunt down targets]a reference to Heartbreaker, Deimos' spiked chain[/tt], but it is certainly a Sword of Gods."

"Our father will not be able to come straight away, and even if he could it is unlikely he would just try to cut it in half straight away, so what do you suggest we do in the mean time?" Cipher questions. "Can we create a copy of the ring so that Zilira does not notice?"

~MTWC
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  #159  
Old Jul 8th, 2013, 11:03 AM
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”I considered that, but she's literally connected to the ring. Would she be fooled by any copy, no matter how exact? I have no idea. Being unable to say, I'd suggest we take the ring to him. If nothing else it creates a conflict of orders since she can't very well protect the king and fulfil all her other orders if she goes chasing us off to a distant section of the shadow plane, even if she knew where to find us.
Besides, I'd rather he didn't destroy it here if that's what he winds up doing. I mentioned an energy release, and I rather like Halvanna sans any smoking craters.”

It would mean Morgan would have to stay with the Children until the chains were broken, since it would take perhaps a ten count for Zilira to first suspect then confirm that Morgan was involved in the attempt to free her. Naturally Morgan was going to have to divest himself of her holy symbol and do a thorough check for spiders on his person before they left.
”Unless anyone else has any brilliant suggestions that is what I've been able to come up with.”
Morgan preferred his schemes as uncomplicated as possible. Less to go wrong that way.
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  #160  
Old Jul 8th, 2013, 11:22 AM
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It was good that the process was getting clear but he strategy of it felt over-thought.
"I think you should go without the fake ring and just have it missing. A fake ring could also work, though, since in the end even if she suspected something might be in the works for her release she wouldn't know for sure who to destroy to prevent it. I doubt it matters. Even if she knew her son had it, it isn't like she can up and stop the process.
It would be swifter if we could just bring it to him. Have one of the children bring him the ring if he cannot come himself for the while. The sooner we're done with this the better. Open warfare could begin anytime now."

Last edited by Blue; Jul 22nd, 2013 at 05:16 PM.
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  #161  
Old Jul 22nd, 2013, 05:03 PM
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Vulcar opens his mouth to add his own thoughts to the matter before snapping it shut and staring off into the space ahead of him for a moment. "It seems we have another guest arriving. And his timing couldn't be better."

Shadows slip out from under chairs, coalescing into a tall humanoid figure with grey eyes and pointed ears, however even as a silhouette the figure is recognisably male. Just as quickly as the shadows came they disappear, leaving a man in mis-matched armour and clothing standing before them. His grey eyes scanned those present, resting on the other Children whom he gave a brief nod of recognition to. He eventually comes to a rest when he sees Shosanna. "I see you've broken the Covenant then Shosanna."

The vampire smiles at Coiya's remark. "It's good to see you too big brother. Does this mean you're done moping around and writing depressing poetry now?" Coiya gives her a flat look while most of the people in the room seem at a loss for how to react to the sibling banter.

Ignoring the question, Coiya looks around until his eyes fall on Seneca. "You and I need to have words."

Seneca meets the Deity's gaze, seemingly unphased by his hostility. "A discussion for a more private time, Your Highness. I assume you're here because of-"

"In part, yes. But I've another reason for being here, but that can wait for now." He looks towards Morgan. "Cipher told me you knew how to free my mother but that you needed my help. Well, I'm here. What do we do?"

~MTWC
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Last edited by Makenshi; Jul 22nd, 2013 at 06:16 PM.
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  #162  
Old Jul 22nd, 2013, 06:50 PM
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Morgan nods to Coiya. He'd been planning on travelling back to the shadow plane to deliver the ring to him. It was somewhere secluded where it could be done without worrying about collateral damage or prying eyes. But this worked too.

With a flick of his thumb and a fierce grin the mage sends the ring dancing and flickering through the light towards Coiya.
”That's the physical anchor of the true magic bindings your father created. I'm not sure what the technical term for it is. Keystone?”
Beyond reading Valen's book and examining the wards he'd been able to find around the palace Morgan's education on the subject of true magic was really kind of pitiful.
”It can be unravelled via True Magic, if you know how. Or it can be physically destroyed with a weapon of sufficient potency, such as yours or Min's swords. That would result in a pretty significant energy release though, so please refrain from smashing it here and now.”
His gaze passes over the gathered children.
”You know, I can see why you'd find this sort of work so satisfying.”
Maybe when this was all over he'd ask about how an outsider could become a swordbrother and join them on some real jobs.
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Old Jul 24th, 2013, 07:03 AM
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Coiya catches the ring nonchalantly while focussing his attention on Morgan. "Focus." He answers off-handedly when Morgan asks out loud what the term for the ring is. As Morgan continues the God looks at the ring, his expression guarded. When he is finished there is a pregnant pause before Coiya says anything else. "That bastard gave her the key to her own prison. Hiding it in plain sight." He clenches his other fist. "And I thought I couldn't hate him any more than I did before." He flicks the ring towards Bane who, while caught by surprise, catches it almost as deftly. "You're quicker than I am at determining an item's properties. Did he leave any surprises in the ring?"

Bane holds the ring between his fingers and starts to move it around and examine it as he did for the Bracers before. "Nothing but what I detected when you gave it to me before. It doesn't even have any True Magic markings on it. I thought those were required?"

"They are, but they don't need to be visibile. If I had to guess he probably put the markings inside the ring itself using magic. He did that with a lot of the defences in the palace too. Especially the more important or sensitive ones. It's especially annoying for a Binding Focus since its practically indestructible, so trying to cut it into pieces to find the markings would be difficult if not impossible without risking an explosion."

Bane frowns. "I'm not getting anything at all about the ring's true purpose."

Coiya sighs. "Don't worry. That ring represents my father's crowning achievement and the source of his initial power. It's likely got multiple True Magic wardings designed to foil Deities, let alone Godlings." He holds his hand out and Bane throws the ring back. The God stares at the ring in his hand for a moment before giving an annoyed sigh and looking up. "The longer we leave it, the greater the risk that my mother will figure out exactly what we're up to, and that is not a good thing."

Vulcar frowns. "Aren't you more powerful than her?"

"As a Deity? Yes. But remember that I killed Lynka, a Lesser Deity, as a mere Godling - barely more than mortal in Deific terms. Not to mention that if she knows I have this then she'll be trying to kill me while I try not to kill her. She's also a more powerful psionicist than I am and with her more powerful Vestiges available to her combined with all that I'd rather not risk it."

"So what do you intend to do?"

Coiya thinks for a moment before smiling in response. "Live up to my name." The shadows envelop him again and in barely a moment the Sword in the Dark is gone.

"Fath-" Bane begins just as he vanishes. He and his sisters share a concerned look. "Should we try to help?"

Cipher shakes her head. "No. He'll be fi-" There is a deep rumbling from somewhere within the palace before the room starts to shake. Not violently but enough to cause more than a little concern as any unattended items started falling off of tables. The tremors last only for a few seconds before dying out. "-ne." Cipher finishes in a flat tone while everyone present looks around as if expecting Zilira to pop up and start going on a rampage.

Only Nehrahk and Shade look unconcerned while Shosanna rolls her eyes. "My brother, the drama queen. Wouldn't surprise me if he just popped off somewhere and just tried to cut the thing."

~MTWC
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  #164  
Old Jul 24th, 2013, 04:16 PM
SpatulaOdoom SpatulaOdoom is offline
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The events that follow Morgan handing over the ring are a logical progression that Morgan had gone over in his head many times before. Inevitable in a simple cause and effect sense. It didn't take years of careful manipulation or a crude application of brute force to put things on the right path. All it took was an eye for patterns and a little willingness to take some personal risk. Ok, maybe quite a bit of personal risk. One little move at the right time and everything falls into place.

He's feels no great sense of accomplishment though. Maybe it would take some time to sink in. Right now, Morgan mostly feels nervous. A stretched buzzing feeling in his stomach as he waits to see the results. Was she free? Had he done the right thing? Would things turn out for the best or had he thrown a bolt in the whole thing? Did Zilira really care for him, or was it a passing phase or a twisted artifice of her complusions. Will Vulcar still trust him after this, after he's found out that Morgan had been keeping knowledge from him? Was Coiya alright after the energy release, or had he been too hasty in his preparations?

Morgan half rises, intending to go find Zilira, see what happened, before pausing and sitting back down.
Wait. Patience.
He schools himself to stillness he doesn't feel inside
It lasts for all of ten seconds before Morgan begins drumming his fingers on the tabletop.
”So... How's everyone else's week been?”
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Last edited by SpatulaOdoom; Jul 25th, 2013 at 03:50 AM.
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  #165  
Old Jul 24th, 2013, 06:42 PM
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Nevh felt pretty unconcerned with the entire scene.
The Sword in the Dark's arrival was timely and convenient indeed and, even better, he was very efficient.
No time lost and straight to the heart of the matter and straight toward its resolution. She could respect and appreciate that.
Shosanna's quips were annoying so she ignored them. Her nerves had been well tried of late and she was struggling to maintain patience and self-control.

Morgan's question almost felt like a release.
"The worst ever."
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