Illyria - Illyria Finale - Aspect Of Air

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Description: Chaos erupts among the Sacred Order acolytes, as one of their number goes unexpectedly berserk. Breaking away and harming her allies with some strange sickness, she feels to a nearby cave. Afflicted by some malady or curse that emanates from her, the possessed acolyte draws the attention of a recently cured Julia, who hears the spirits calling out to her. Julia moves to stop the afflicted acolyte before she can escape the camp and reach Illyria Castle...

Chaos. Death. Sickness.

All of these have been left in the wake of the Acolyte losing her mind. The sickness spreads rapidly among the other acolytes, and at least one has fallen to the wasting disease - the body found with grey-ish white skin, limbs shriveled as if they'd been sick for years, rather than hours. The girl that's found shared a bunk with the Mad Acolyte.

Following the call of the spirits, hearing their distress, feeling their dismay, the path leads away from the halls of the Sacred Order and to a cave in a nearby. It's just a large crack in the rock face that opens up to a wider space that is large enough to house a cathedral. Stalagtites and stalagmites are jagged teeth that give the illusion of the space being a vast mouth, sure to swallow up any trespassers.

The floor is wet, slick, but for a raised section where, at some point, part of the roof fell in a great slab and split, offering a raised, if broken, dias.

Upon this, the girl is slumped on her knees, shrouded by massive, tattered wings reminiscent of a vulture. A bird of carrion and decay. Her hair bleached out to white and an icy blue, her limbs shriveled up and atrophied. The uniform is shredded, and any bared skin is darkly, almost blackly bruised. Like rot from within. The bruises taking on the shape of scales, as if the scales leave imprints on her from the inside.

For a while, Julia had been afflicted with a curse of some kind. One that had turned her into, of all things, a bear.

Somehow she managed to overcome this whole thing, and for a while she's been trying to isolate the cause of this whole mess. During her journey into this place, she has maintained contact with the spirits, letting them guide her on her way. So far, the spirits have not let Julia down, and they continue to guide her on what she feels is the right path to deal with what is going on in this world.

From nearby, the sound of boots running on the ground can be heard getting louder and louder as the Native American girl makes her way on the path that the spirits have laid out for her. It's not until she comes upon the mysterious girl that's lying atop the slab, and her eyes widen almost immediately.

"Spirits, what is this?" Julia whispers to herself, looking over the girl as if trying to get an idea as to what she is up against. "What has happened to this poor young lady? Spirits, can I help her at all?" A glimmer of tears starts to form in Julia's eyes as she looks over the girl, hoping that she will not have to fight her.

All while not realizing what she truly may be up against...

The massive wings shift, stretching slightly before wrapping tighter around the form of the youth - truly somewhere between eighteen and twenty, but emaciated and thin, seeming smaller than she is or was from the wasting of the sickness.

The girl lifts her head, and for a moment, there's a fleeting glimpse of terror in eyes that have turned an unnatural silver hue. Fear. Pain. The sickness ravaging the host in enforced silence.

That glimpse is fleeting, though, replaced with a haughty smirk and a coldness that's reptilian. The wings beat at the air, dragging the limp form from the ground. Twisted, atrophied legs dangle, the toes barely grazing the cold stone. Despite the diseased appearance of the flesh, the voice that rings out is loud and clear, carrying and echoing with an unexpected strength within the chamber of the caves.

"Have you come to seek your death?"

As soon as the wings shift, Julia steps back quickly, raising her hands into a defensive stance of sorts. Her mouth opens a little as she breathes rapidly a few times, caught totally off-guard by this whole thing, but after a moment she regains her composure and stares back at the mysterious being that has just formed before her. At first, Julia is taken aback by the look of terror and pain in the girl's eyes. It's almost like the girl is being possessed by something else.

Just then the expression changes, and Julia realizes that this is definitely something far worse than she expected. "Spirits? What do I do?" She asks, staring in terror at the creature, totally unsure of what this being truly is. It's not until the creature speaks that Julia realizes that she's up against someone that has become cursed as well, and this time, they've been fully afflicted by the evil in this world. For a moment, Julia closes her eyes as she silently prays for the spirits to lend her their strength. Then she opens her eyes.

"I know that you are part of the evil of this place," Julia says as she points at the afflicted being. "I know that you are possessing her. The spirits guide me, and they tell me that you must be stopped!" Her defensive stance changes to an offensive stance. "I will not die here, for the spirits have protected me. They will continue to protect me. And you shall not be allowed to spread your evil any further!"

COMBATSYS: Julia has started a fight here.

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Julia            0/-------/-------|

COMBATSYS: Saiyuki has joined the fight here.

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Julia            0/-------/-------|-------\-------\0          Saiyuki

Laughter greets Julia's words of challenge. "Everything dies." The silvered eyes are unblinking, the possessed girl rising and falling to the beat of the great wings that have torn their way out of her. Those bared, dirty toes dipping to touch the stone before the strong flap lifts her above it again.

"We will see if they can save you from me!" This, a roar of challenge, far larger than anything the girl herself could have produced - more felt than heard as a rumble through the cave that brings down some rubble and a stalagtite down from the ceiling - the calcified 'tooth' shattering across the floor of the cavern as the tensions build between the two.

"Everything must die, it's true," Julia says, a tone of bravery in her voice as she speaks. "But not everything must die before their time is up. I've survived more than I thought I ever would in my lifetime, and I intend to continue to survive!" The Native American jumps back as the stalagtite comes down from the ceiling, leaving plenty of space between herself and the calcified tooth. "You may think you are powerful, but the spirits grant more power than you could ever imagine!" Even as the creature flies upwards, Julia is not the least bit fazed.

"I will defeat you! I will prevent your evil from spreading further than it already has!" Using the stalagmite as a platform, Julia leaps up onto it and then uses it to give herself some extra height as she attempts to leap into the air and strike the creature with her boot.

COMBATSYS: Julia successfully hits Saiyuki with Light Kick.

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Julia            0/-------/-------|=------\-------\0          Saiyuki

Wings snap forward to try and shield the weakened flesh of the host, the kick from Julia knocking the girl back as she falls to the floor. She tries to catch herself, snapping the wings out, but she can't quite manage it.

When the feet of the girl touch the ground, the legs fold - unable to hold up the weight of her body plus the span of the feathered appendages.

That flash of fear and pain rises up, quickly clamped down on by the creature that's laid claim to the flesh of the girl. With a bellow of rage that follows that woman making contact with her, the jaw of the girl twists unnaurally wide open - like a snake unhinging it's jaw to swallow prey. Rather than consuming a meal, the sound of rage brings with it a noxious cloud of green breath, trying to engulf the other with the cloud.

COMBATSYS: Saiyuki successfully hits Julia with Wasting Breath.

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Julia            0/-------/------=|===----\-------\0          Saiyuki

Julia backs away as soon as she touches the ground again, knowing that an injured enemy could easily be very dangerous. Especially when it's something that's not exactly human. She attempts to get into a defensive stance, anticipating an attack from the creature at any moment, but it's not entirely what Julia is expecting. Instead of being stricken directly, the creature spews forth a cloud of green breath. From the look of it, it doesn't look very healthy, and Julia doesn't know what to make of it either, aside from the fact it's definitely not something she needs mother Earth to be breathing.

Unfortunately, Julia winds up getting a whiff of it, despite her best efforts to cover her nose and mouth, and almost immediately her eyes begin to water and her nose burns as she begins coughing heavily. She drops to her hands and knees as she attempts to get away from the cloud, gasping and coughing as she tries to draw fresh air into her lungs. Once she has enough air in her lungs to get a bit of strength back, Julia rolls forwards, trying to get away from the cloud of poison and towards the creature.

"Mother Earth would never tolerate such a thing from you!" She gasps, still with a bit of the cloud in her lungs. "I cannot allow you to continue with this!" Despite the fact her lungs are still struggling to clear the bad gas from them, Julia nonetheless dashes forwards, attempting to strike the creature with a hard right.

COMBATSYS: Saiyuki Toughs Out Julia's Lashing Arrow!

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Julia            0/-------/----===|======-\-------\0          Saiyuki

"Mother Earth birthed all life." The beast within the girl hisses, the unhinged jaw snapping back into place. "Do you think she did not birth the plagues that control the populations of the world?" Haughty, cocky. Enough so, that the girl doesn't try to move away from the incoming blow - letting the borrowed form take the brunt of it with another laugh.

Weakened as the flesh is, the girl is sent sprawling before the wings drag her back up, tears sliding down her cheeks - though there's no other sign of the mind that's trapped by the great serpent.

Harder the wings beat, dragging the girl higher until she dives for Julia, attempting to wrap those stinking, tattered wings around the other - forcing her right up against the girl's sickened flesh and trying to crush the other woman with the strength in the wings.

COMBATSYS: Julia dodges Saiyuki's Diseased Embrace.

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Julia            0/-------/----===|=====--\-------\0          Saiyuki

"That may be so, but you do not commune with the spirits of Mother Earth! You would never understand them!" Julia grits her teeth, although it's more out of desperation than frustration. "Whether or not she created these plagues is irrelevant. We have the ability to control them. And you are not one of Mother Earth's spirits, so you have no say in this matter!"

Seeing the tears streaming down the creature's cheeks reminds Julia that there's an innocent soul trapped within that being. She coughs a couple of times, still feeling the cloud's effects in her lungs. "Spirits, help me to release this evil within me!" Another cough and while it feels like it's letting up, there are still remnants in her lungs.

"I must focus on rescuing this lost soul. Whatever has taken over her must be purged!" Even though she feels remorseful about having to attack her, Julia knows there's no other way to free her than by defeating whatever has taken over her body. With another cough, Julia spins on her feet a couple of times before attempting to deliver a swift high kick at the creature, and if successful, will follow up with an uppercut.

COMBATSYS: Saiyuki blocks Julia's Hunting Tomahawk.

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Julia            0/-------/---====|=======\-------\0          Saiyuki

"I have say in more than you know!" The beast within snaps, the wings used to protect the fragile human form from the worst of those incoming blows. It isn't that the thing cares about the host, but their own ability to continue within the stolen body.

"You will bear witness and your body will serve as reminder to my power!" The voice rising like a tide to fill the chamber - so strong for such a frail seeming form.

Rearing back, she laughs, a wild unnatural look to her as chi is gathered, the energy infusing the diseased girl's limbs before the strong wings carry her forward, trying to grab hold of Julia with hands imbued with that unnatural strength, to hold and flip and try to bear the other to the ground - seeking to infect with another plague through scratches.

COMBATSYS: Saiyuki successfully hits Julia with Infestation.

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Julia            0/-------/-======|=======\-------\1          Saiyuki

Julia's attacks are blocked, and the girl steps back again, preparing for another attack at the drop of a hat. "You are deluded, that is all I can say about you!" She yells, scowling a little now, before coughing once again. "You cannot control Mother Earth! You will never gain control of her! And I will not bear witness to anything but your very purging!"

Unfortunately, Julia's got another thing coming as the creature suddenly grabs her and then has her on the ground, scratching at her with those claws that seem to be infected with something. Her body begins to tingle then burn, and she cries out. "No, spirits, help me!" She grits her teeth in pain before opening her eyes. "Of course!"

"You may think you have the advantage, but when I am in trouble, the spirits guide me!" Julia yells. She attempts to emphasize this by wrapping her arms around the creature then attempting to kick it off of her as she releases her grasp. "You will not have me!"

COMBATSYS: Julia successfully hits Saiyuki with Combo Grapple.

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Julia            0/-------/=======|=======\===----\1          Saiyuki

Caught up in that grip, the girl is briefly face to face with Julia. The eyes wide. Another peek beyond that mask of the Dragon within before she's sent tumbling, rolling in a tangle of limbs and feathers before coming to a halt. Emaciated arms push her up enough the wings can lift her once more.

"Can you feel it?" She hisses, rising slowly, the possessed girl showing the marks of the fight on enfeebled flesh. "Can you feel it slipping through your veins? Sapping your strength? Your life? /ALL/ things die. And all death belongs to the Mother Earth you adore."

The wings hold her along while she 'runs' towards Julia, displaying strength beyond the state of the body as she comes in hard, pivoting and lashing out with one of those bare feet.

COMBATSYS: Julia interrupts Strong Kick from Saiyuki with Palm Explosion.

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Julia            1/-----==/=======|=======\=======\1          Saiyuki

Julia does feel it going through her. It hurts like nothing else and she's still coughing a bit as well, although the cough seems to be dying out. Unlike Julia's fighting spirit, which is only getting stronger and stronger by the minute. "It is true that when we die, we return to Mother Earth, but that is part of freeing our spirit so that we may remain unified with Mother Earth for all eternity!" She grits her teeth and clenches her fists. "It is not the end, but only the beginning. Nevertheless, I will not let you take my life!"

Stepping towards the dashing creature, Julia thrusts her palms forwards, spiritual energy surrounding them, and she lets out a cry as she sends forth her spiritual strength in hopes of stopping the creature.

Surprisingly, Julia's attempt to stop the creature works, and she reels back a little after the impact, gasping for air as her body still burns and she coughs one more time. "The spirits... will protect... myself... and you..." She says as she gets more air back into her lungs.

Mid-kick, the energy infused hands of Julia catch the incoming blow and once more, Saiyuki is thrown back, her dirty, bare feet dragging along the broken surface of the stone while the wings desperately flap to try and keep her upright. The host is taking a beating, but it doesn't seem to be slowing down the Dragon within the broken body of the girl.

"Her? You think your spirits care about /HER/?" The voice booming, filling the huge cavern and echoing. "There is no hope for this one. Already she -rots-. I can feel it." And the dragon /likes/ it, nearly purring, voice savoring the feel of the host's suffering.

Rising until the girl is helplessly dangling between the unkempt wings, there's a sense of forboding. Of shadows gathering and growing darker than before. A wind kicks up around the pair, swirling and gaining strength, strong enough to pluck a few broken feathers from the tattered vulture wings. A storm of energy building until the Dragon's roar can be heard, and seen as a faint, nearly invisible outline of the huge dragon. Another roar brings a buffet of wind before it launches itself at Julia, hitting with as much that phantasmal outline as the flesh, trying to knock the other woman back and down, to plow into her with an unrelenting fury.

COMBATSYS: Saiyuki successfully hits Julia with Pestilence Reigns.

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Julia            1/------=/=======|>>>----\-------\0          Saiyuki

Determined as she is, Julia is not a perfect fighter. She goes down hard, not expecting any of that from her enemy. The Native American finds herself flat on her stomach, more pain surging through her than before. She feels like she's been infested with even more plague than before. She still can't believe that this is happening to her.

"Unngh... spirits... keep me... alive..." She pushes herself back onto her feet and struggles to keep herself balanced. "I won't... back down... I can't..." Julia closes her eyes and lets the spirits flow into her body, attempting to purge what is inside of her.

COMBATSYS: Julia gains composure.

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Julia            1/------=/=======|>>>----\-------\0          Saiyuki

The phantasmal limbs of the draconic outline bear the 'weight' of the beast. The girl is suspended within the outline of the Air Dragon, the wings displayed. "You cannot defeat me!" The roar louder, vibrating through the cavern and the bones with a bassy rumble.

Pouncing like a fox, the draconic form rakes at Julia with spectral claws, trying to keep the woman from catching her breath or gathering herself. "You came here to die, mortal! I shall feast on your soul!" Howling, so certain now of victory.

COMBATSYS: Julia blocks Saiyuki's Draconic Rending.

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Julia            1/----===/=======|>>-----\-------\0          Saiyuki

The spirits guide Julia to open her eyes at the last second and raise her hands while tensing her body. She cries out as the claws slash into her, and she winces a little. But despite the pain in her body and the fact she's pretty much bloodied and infected by who-knows-what, the fighting spirit in Julia still burns, even if it's more faint than ever.

"You may defeat me... but the spirits... shall protect... my soul..." Julia steps towards the creature again, spiritual energy burning within her as she steps towards the creature with an increase in stride as she attempts to slap at the creature, followed by an uppercut, which she then brings down elbow first, along with a backhand, then finally charging forward with her shoulder.

If it works, that's one thing. But will it succeed?

COMBATSYS: Julia can no longer fight.

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Saiyuki          0/-------/-----<<|

COMBATSYS: Julia successfully hits Saiyuki with Iron Mountain Rush.

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Saiyuki          1/-------/<<<<<<<|

It connects, indeed... but at what cost?

As soon as Julia connects with her last attack, her body gives out and she collapses to the ground in a sprawled position. "Ungh... spirits... will... save my... soul..." She mutters these last words before she passes out.

And maybe they do, in their way. That burst of energy from Julia is enough to crack through that spectral shell of power, the blows landing hard and leaving the girl on the broken slab of stone. A wing broken, the girl battered and weeping, sobbing. For a moment it seems that perhaps the dragon has been driven out, defeated.

And then there's a sinewy *snap* as the broken wing forces itself straight again, and the sobbing of the possessed girl abruptly cuts off. Battered, broken, the beast seethes within the body of the girl, greatly diminished but still whole. Still there. Unwilling to risk what energy it has left in finishing off Julia, the wings and hands of the girl work to drag the broken body out of the cavern.

Dumping the last dregs of it's energy into the flesh-sack, the wings find strength to take to the air, the dragon heading for the Castle of Illyria.

Log created on 13:45:52 05/10/2018 by Julia, and last modified on 17:35:39 05/10/2018.