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    A New Game

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    Avalon
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    A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:55 pm

    First topic message reminder :


    It is November 4th, 1876 when everything changes. The air seems somewhat chilled today, as if there is going to be a storm coming. Things are strange, and no one knows why, they just go about their daily lives with the hairs on the back of their necks standing up, eyes darting around from time to time as shadows seemed to move in the corners of their minds. However, it is not simply a normal day in London, England. Even if it was raining heavily enough for the men’s bowler hats to catch water within their curve, and the women’s skirts could never be dry even if they had walked under the largest umbrella in the world.
    Today was the start of a new game.

    If you could really call it that, more of a challenge between old friends, and magicians nonetheless. Each sorcerer would acquire a student, the younger the better, for such tricks cannot be taught to older, more tainted minds. Each would start with a small child, and train them for years, all the while being very vague to what this challenge was really about. For one cannot simply explain this challenge without giving away how the…winner, of sorts, is announced.
    The two children would be kept apart, until deemed mature and skilled enough for the game to truly be set into motion. Until then, they would learn.

    The two magicians who started this game, have a bit of a secret system. You see, this game is set in stone, signed with blood and sealed with scars. Each mage would take a personal item off themselves, and give it to the other man, in a polite trade. However, when each sorcerer chose their student, they would simply place the object on their skin, and the shape would be branded into them. A seal. A scar that would never fade away, binding each child to their new opponent.
    Keeping up, are you?
    Good, because this game is not meant for the faint of heart, or the simple of wits. It is a deadly match, and the rules are simple.

    Each time a student shows a large display of power, it is called a ‘move’.
    You may not meddle, or in any way tamper with your opponent’s move before they have displayed it.
    You may add to their move once it is played, in any way you like.
    The moves are not judged, nor are they either good, nor bad. They simply are.
    Do not give yourselves away to mere humans, unless directly confronted with suspicions. Then the choice is up to you whether you want to mislead them or not.
    The playing field is all around you, may you choose your venue wisely.
    And finally.
    The last student left standing, is the winner…however, neither of the students are to know this fatal rule, that is, until the end.

    The students meet on October 12th 1895, At the girl’s 19th birthday, and it is a strange turn of events, however the feeling in the room is the same as when this all started. Chilled, but with an edge of fire.



    Note: In this RP, magicians have few boundaries to what their magic cannot alter, however there are a few simple rules to follow...be careful not to go overboard, as it will become very easy to do that with this form of ‘power’. I’ll cover some simple things, like….
    Can I kill someone with magic? Yeah…but isn’t that a little impolite? At least give the poor guy a chance.
    Can I fabricate objects out of thin air? Yes, but not for a long time. Basically, you may create any object you like, however it would take your constant concentration for it to keep its form as long as you needed it.
    Can I make people fall in love with me? Simple minds, yes. You can affect anyone’s mind if they allowed you to, or if they simply didn’t care. Same goes for removing a memory, or similar actions. People who resist this power cannot be effected, however they can have their perception on events altered to make you more appealing, or unappealing, depending on what mood you were going for.

    If any other questions come to mind, I will gladly answer them! Until then, would anyone care to join me? Preferably a male, please.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Sun Mar 10, 2013 8:11 pm

    "It would be nice i suppose. Mr. Hollow has a very nice home with Fern. In the end though one choice is as good as the other."

    Ethan turns back to his toast and eggs and makes a couple sandwiches while listening to the men. 'What is going on here I'm not seeing?' Puzzling over everything from the last few days Ethan hardly touches his breakfast. Every now and then he glances over to Fern. Something catches his eye while essentially plays with his food. The end of her skirts are completely dry and show very little, or no trace, of the mud puddles through the streets. 'Perhaps they came i a carriage, because i doubt we have been sitting here long enough for it to dry completely.'

    "While that is true Ethan, the decision isnt solely mine to make. Regardless i believe i will have to take you up on your offer Lysander. There is much im interested in catching up on, and Ethan could do with a friend." Terrance notices his son hardly eating but keeps his thoughts to himself while he drinks some of his tea. "Im also sure that you would like to learn what i have been up to for the last decade or so. But that can wait until later."
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:56 pm

    April 21st 1883, Paris, France.
    The Hollow’s Hotel Room.


    A young boy runs down the hall, his trousers are patched up and he has dirt on his nose. In front of him, giggling as he chased her was Fern, running as if she could carry the wind. Soon enough, the young boy catches her, and pretends to slay her with a broom. She topples over, holding her chest. Although she pretends to be dying, her eyes give her away, and she erupts into fits of laughter on the ground with the boy.
    A low voice makes the children stop, and a hand reaches for Fern’s arm, pulling her up. “Young lady.” Lysander’s eyes are black and extremely cold, like jagged edges of an ice berg. They leave the boy, but Fern looks back to him with an apologetic look. The simple kitchen boy gives her a slight wave as the door shuts in her face.

    “Isobel, how many times have I told you? Do not leave the room when I am away. Understand?” He dropped her arm, and she rubbed it, eyes welling up slightly. Fern was only six years old, and more wild than an alley cat.
    The papers around the room picked up as if there were a faint breeze in the room, and Lysander quickly turned to his daughter with one eyebrow raised. Fern’s pout had turned into a frown, and it was becoming apparent that she was beginning to have what her father started to call, a ‘magic fit.’

    The window panes shook as he quickly stepped toward her, grabbing her arm again and breaking her wrist in a quick, snap of his fingers. She cried out, dropping to her knees as her tangled braid slipped out of its knot.
    “If you want to use magic, you’d better learn how to control yourself.” Lysander spoke to his daughter as if she were less than a stray dog on the streets. “Heal it. You know how.” And with that, he left her in the hotel room. This had been one of the many trips Lysander had brought Fern on, meeting with many friends and showing her off with some kind of secret look. Showing them the pocket watch scar on her wrist that she had gotten when she was five, as if it held some kind of meaning that Fern did not know quite yet. For she knew nothing of the challenge, not until she was around eleven or twelve did Lysander begin explaining it to her. Until then, she was simply learning the ancient arts of enchantment and manipulation.

    Dragging herself to her bed, with her wrist cradled in one arm, Fern began to heal the broken bones. Only hours later did Lysander return, finding his daughter curled up in a deep sleep, still dressed, above the covers with her arm still cradled to her chest…all the bones perfectly healed.

    October 14th 1895, London.
    Brunch with the Calvert’s.


    Fern touched her wrist as she remembered something from long ago, a memory that felt like more of a dream now than something that had actually happened. Although, for some reason, her wrist felt rather sore.
    “Please, excuse me a moment.” She said as she rose, slipping away quickly down a hall that led to a set of double doors, most likely the kitchen, and the lavatory. For a few moments, she simply killed time, tucking a stray curl back into her braid as she gazed around the open bathroom. Then, after the soreness in her wrist had disappeared, she returned to the hall. Only as she took a step out of the lavatory, did she hear a sharp scream. It was muffled, so all of the guests in the dining room would never have heard it, however, Fern was close enough to the kitchen doors to hear the noises of panic that were beginning to emerge from it.
    “Bollocks.” She murmured, shaking her head as she turned, wondering what had driven her to investigate the noise, and she was instantly regretting the decision when she opened the kitchen doors, and a shock of red greeted her.
    A man was on the ground, clutching his hand that was covered in rich, deep red blood. Two others were gathered around him, trying to wrap the wound in a cloth, but they quickly turned red and soaked through.
    Resisting the urge to faint, Fern took a step toward the man. In shock, one of the cooks that was assisting him looked up at her, expecting her to help. “He…he was just peeling potatoes.” And then the man went limp, falling to a heap on the floor.
    “Christ, give me that.” Fern murmured, dropping to her knees and taking the man’s bloodied hand. He looked dazed, and his eyelids were starting to droop from blood loss. As Fern unwrapped the cloth from the man’s hand, she found that two of his fingers were mangled, nearly down to the bone. She went pale, shaking her head slightly as she breathed through her nose calmly. As she grasped his hand, she closed her eyes, and slowly the muscle and sinew began to re-attach itself, skin forming around it as the drops of blood made their way back up his wrist, and returned into him, until the wound was sealed.

    As she stood, she found her hands were shaking and she was ghostly white. “Forget this ever happened. Return to cooking. And stop peeling potatoes.” She ordered, with a wave of her hand, men all blinked, and stood, returning to their posts as she slipped back through the double doors as if nothing had happened.
    In the secluded hall, Fern swayed against the wall, looking down at what used to be her perfectly creamy white dress. It was now stained along her chest and skirts with deep red, and her silk gloves were stained with blood. With a soft cry, she felt tears slipping past her eyelashes, and with a slow flick of her weak fingers, the red began to fade from her clothes until the fabric was perfect once more, and the only flaw to her hands was the nervous shaking.
    For a few moments, she leaned against the wall of the hallway, face in her hands as she tried to pull herself together. The third move had been played, and although she did not want to ever think about that incident again, she knew she would have to relay every detail to her father later that day, for she was certain he had felt the change in the air as she used her magic.

    As she returned to her table, she was dead quiet. And although she looked slightly shaken, nothing to her appearance gave anything away. Lysander gazed across the table at his daughter with apparent interest, although Terrance was still talking about something or other.
    As Fern looked down at her lush red raspberries, the color standing out against the porcelain bowl, she found herself unable to eat another bite.

    “Yes well, we must be returning home. However the invitation is open, and Isobel and I would love to have the both of you this evening for supper, perhaps to stay for a while?” Lysander stood, taking his daughter gently by the arm. Before he could hear the answer to his offer, the Hollow’s had disappeared, and the second they got into the carriage, Fern had fainted.
    “Next move is all yours, old boy.” Lysander murmured as he gazed through the window with a faint grin, eyes wandering to the curled up figure of his daughter, who appeared to be holding her wrist delicately to her chest.
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    Wraith
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Mon Mar 11, 2013 10:59 am

    Speaking up since Mr. Hollow and his daughter showed up ethan turns to his father once they depart. "Are we really going to have dinner with them? I only ask because the way he invited us and just walked off without an answer is rather rude."

    "Son, I've known Lysander many years now. Believe me when i say the act you witnessed was kind compared to what i have seen from him. To answer your question though, yes we are going to have dinner with the Hollows. Be yourself, with caution of course. Since they arrived you've been withdrawn from everything. You wont repeat this display tonight though. To put it simply, be relaxed but aware for anything."

    "Yes father. So what time are we supposed to go over? And are we staying for afew days as Mr. Hollow requested?"

    "Knowing him dinner will be read around 7pm. That being said we are leaving around 5:30pm. Do pack a few days worth of clothes and anything else you need. While we are staying with them you will not lock yourself away. Its unhealthy to hide from everything. If you are worried about Fern quit. With any luck you may get to be great friends, provided you actually speak with her. Now quit asking questions or we will never have time to get packed as its already 12:30."

    Terrance lays down enough money for the bill and a generous tip before he and Ethan go home to pack. Upon entering the house ethan packs a suitcase quickly with extra clothes, a razon, and a couple books he was currently reading. Once finished he checks to make sure everything is in place. "I'm headed to the library, its only 1:30 now so ill be back before 3. If you need me you know where i am." Ethan calls all this as he goes through the house. He finishes and heads outside quickly making in the direction of the library.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:16 pm

    With a soft groan, Fern propped herself up on her elbows and rubbed one of her eyes faintly, eyes wandering around her own bedroom, resting upon her father, who was sitting on one of the far corners of the bed, polishing his suit buttons.
    "You weren't ready for that." Lysander did not even bother to look up at his daughter, a disappointed shake of his head making her sigh as she fell back onto her bed, pulling the covers up over her face as a head ache began to form in the corners of her mind.

    "I've healed myself time and time again, father." She murmured, trying to defend herself slightly. "And you know I hate it when you go through my memory. Gives me a horrid migraine." She grumbled, peeking out over the top of her covers.
    Lysander rolled his eyes as he finally looked at Fern, and she shrunk back slightly at the intensity of his gaze. "You fainted, and I was getting impatient. When a move is played, it isn't supposed to be in the back of a kitchen. It's supposed to be big, and wonderful..." His eyes lit up slightly at a memory from a past lifetime.
    "Wonderful or not, my move was played. Can't go back and change it." Fern turned over in her bed, burying her face in her pillows.

    After a pause, she looked up over her shoulder at her father, who looked as if he was contemplating the idea of 'going back and changing it' but before he could properly form the thought, Fern sat up. "No, no way am I meddling with time."
    Lysander lifted one shoulder in a half-hearted shrug. "Well, my dear, you'd better get ready. Terrance and Ethan will be joining us for supper." He stood, looking down at Milo, who was curled up in a small soft white ball on the other edge of the bed. He sneered at the creature, before he left the room.

    Milo slowly rose and crawled up to Fern's side, rubbing himself against her arm. "He's losing it, I swear he's coming undone." Fern whispered to the kitten, before she flung the blankets off of herself and nearly tore off the cream white dress, never wanting to wear it again, for it only reminded her of how it had been soaked in blood only hours ago.
    As Fern washed up and brushed out the tangles in her hair, she blinked, finding a soft blush on her cheeks as she remembered the way she was stealing glances at Ethan during brunch. Hopefully when her father was picking through her memory, he did not notice that.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Mon Mar 11, 2013 4:51 pm

    After an hour or so at the library Ethan starts heading home. As iit starts raining lightly he hunkers down at the bus stop and waits. Before long a bus pulls up and the driver gets out. Spotting he he looks mortified but notices he didnt hit me. "Im sorry son. This bus isnt moving until the rain lightens up. I cant see anything more then two feet from it."

    The driver takes a seat on the bench and slouches in a manner to try and get some sleep. Giving the man a few minutes of deep rythmic breathing i decide he is out for the time being. Quickly i look towards the sky and summon a gryphon. I lay out instructions for my underling and watch as he preforms perfectly. Releasing it the gryphon quickly returns to its home plane as i wake the driver up.

    Tapping the man lightly on the shoulder the man wakes with a start. "Sir, you asked me to wake you when the storm died down.." Rubbing the sleep from his eyes the man stretches as he stands.

    "Where are you off to son?"

    "Went king's street." I take a seat near the back of the bus and look out the window. If anyone had taken the time to notices they would have seen that the route to the young man's home was the only place where the storm had "lightened up" to become drivable conditions. In a couple more minutes the driver pulls to the curb just a few houses down from ethans and he scrambles off. The man closes the door behind him and pulls away slowly. After a block or two he is forced to wait some more.

    Meaanwhile Ethan get to his house and quickly goes upstairs to change. At the top he is met by Terrance. "I hope you can change and dry off quickly. We have are alreadybehind schedule. We cant afford to waste time."

    "Yes father."Ethan slips past the aged man and continues to his room. Five minutes later he comes back out with his suitcase and a trench coat. In the living room he meets his father and waits.

    "We wont be able to get a carriage or anything. Oh well, i have just the thing." Checking his pockets to make sure he has everything he pulls a slip of paper out and hands it to Ethan. "This will teleport us and our luggage to Lysander's home. Grab anything you need now, if you have anything go ahead and cast the spell.

    Upon completion of the spell Ethan feels as if the world has crushed him down to ant size before throwing him across a wide room. Quickly the 'flight' was short as he lands on unsteady legs. "It does take some getting used to.." Terrance chuckles to himself as he knocks on the door.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sat Mar 16, 2013 6:39 pm

    Soon, Fern was surrounded by a pool of warm bubbles, sitting curled up in the bath her governess had drawn for her. The air in the bathroom smelled of lilacs and orchids, making her head cloudy and dreamy as she tucked her wet hair behind her ears.
    As Fern thought about the upcoming evening, she couldn’t decide if she wanted the bubbles to smell like honey or rose petals, the flowery smells in the room changing as she casted spells under her lips, until her head was spinning with sickly sweet drowsiness. She settled on the clean smell of fresh strawberries, and soon her governess was welcoming her with a soft, plush white towel.
    Slipping slightly as she got out of the bath, Milo greeted her in her room with a soft ‘mew’ and nothing more, distracting himself with pawing at her pillows. A new dress was laid out, and Fern was thankful that it wasn’t the cream dress she had worn at brunch, the image of blood stains tattooed on her mind as she thought of the cook’s hand.

    Hair damp, she shook out her curls and intertwined them into a loose, messy braid, a few rebellious locks slipping out around the nape of her neck. The evening dress was a deep midnight blue, with a high collar and long tight sleeves, rows of black pearls tracing lines around her back and wrists. Her governess laced her corset tight, causing Fern to gasp as her hand touched her throat lightly, eyes widening with a faint shock as she breathed out.
    “I assume breathing is out of the question, then.” She said, straightening herself out slightly with a faint smirk.
    Her governess clicked her tongue faintly, “I would hold my breath all night if I had your figure, Miss Hollow.”
    Fern giggled with her, making small girlish jokes before there was a faint knock on her door.

    “They’re here.” Fern sighed, still slightly weary from the strange morning she had, even more nervous at the thought of the two men staying with her and her father for a while.
    A servant opened her door and confirmed that the two had arrived, and with a small curtsey, her governess left her. Gazing into her large vanity mirror for a second, Fern tried to no avail to tame her wild locks, managing to get them off her face as her braid found its place over one of her shoulders. Placing her white silk gloves over her long delicate fingers, she left her room and walked down toward the main hall.

    A servant had already answered the door, and the two men stood, gazing around the entry hall. Fern had to admit it looked rather different than it had on her birthday. Less amazing, a little more creepy with the darkness falling quickly.
    “Good evening,” Fern greeted them with a graceful bow of her head, her smile brightening the room more than the chandelier ever could. “I believe my father is in the dining room already, if you would follow me. Your bags will be sent to your rooms this evening.” She wasn’t the best host, however, Fern certainly knew how to be polite.
    As she suspected, her father was in the dining room, behind the bar pouring himself a glass of brandy. When his eyes found them, he grinned past Fern, toward his friend. “Terrance, old boy! Did you see the foliage when you came in? Lovely sight, just brilliant.” The two older men shared a smile as Lysander poured Terrance his own drink, as if they knew something she did not.

    ooc: Sorry for the wait!
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:58 pm

    Ethan casts a quick glance to Terrance while studying the decorations so different from the party's. Nervously he starts tapping his chin lightly as if contemplating the design of a vase he is staring at. After afew moments Ethan turns back to their host listening to Lysander going on about this painting, or that table, and so forth.

    Ethan stops following the men to look over his shoulder. Not quite able to put his finger on just what go into him he looks around to make sure nobody is paying attention and quickly rushes through the spell to summon his an imp and surrounds it in a concealment cloak. After the second spell is done he sends the imp up to the ceiling as a lookout for anything malevolent before approaching Fern.

    "You know, for some reason i feel this atmosphere is more inviting since your birthday. Perhaps its because this is the natural setting? Either way it is fascinating how a place can change so quickly, is it not?"
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sun Mar 17, 2013 1:37 pm

    Fern stepped away from her father and their guests after a moment, mind clouded from the events at brunch. Her eyes traced the lines along the walls, the woodwork so elegantly painted with a soft beige, along with faint green vines that seemed to shiver slightly as she brought her hand out to place it along them.
    She rather enjoyed playing with her magic, especially in her house where during her lessons with Lysander, she would often have to change the setting or manipulate the room somehow. It simply came naturally to her to cause the light painted vines along the walls to ripple, however she stopped herself after a moment. Still too soon to tell, but Fern was beginning to get rather suspicious of the two men, who were to be guests of her house.

    Her eyes wandered away from the wall, finding Ethan walking closer, words on his lips. She smiled at his observation, dropping her hand from the wall and folding it with her other hand delicately behind her back.
    “Indeed, Mr. Calvert.” She tilted her head to the side faintly, as if studying the man who stood before her. Something about him caused Fern to blink, however she did not know what exactly it was. A feeling, a cool aura that made her a little confused.
    Then she smiled, for it was starting to come together. Why her father wanted her to meet this man, all the secret smiles Lysander and Terrance shared. Fern suspected that her opponent was indeed much closer than her father had led her to believe. But she could not be sure. Fern would have to trick him, somehow, into showing her his magic. That would be the only way to be sure, if not, perhaps he was just a normal young man.

    “Please, allow me to show you around.” She said after the silence had dragged on too long, stepping toward him. “I too find things rather fascinating around this house.” She brushed past him, expecting him to follow.
    A soft, playful grin painted her lips, although he could not see it. Fern was already planning her next move, one that may reveal exactly who the Calvert’s were.
    Unnoticed by her, Ethan’s imp was following them.

    * * *

    Lysander watched his daughter leave the room, and Terrance sipped his drink lightly, eyes trained on his own son.
    “It will be much harder for them if they become friends, you know.” Terrance said pointedly to his companion.
    Lysander nodded thoughtfully. “Would you rather they hated each other?”
    Terrance pushed a sigh past his lips, frowning. “No, but that would certainly make the game a little quicker.”
    “You never fail to amuse me,” Lysander grinned at his friend, shaking his head faintly. “But this way is far more entertaining. Two friends, off to kill each other without even knowing it. I only have one thought about the matter.”
    Terrance raised his eyebrows, “And what is that?”
    Lysander’s joking smirk turned into a cold look, and his voice had a razor edge. “Can the boy you call your son kill a creature like my daughter.”
    It was not a question, but Terrance answered with a laugh anyway. “I was wondering the same thing about your daughter, for she hardly seems the murderous type.”

    * * *

    Wistful as she guided Ethan, Fern walked with the grace of a dancer, letting her eyes wander dreamily out the windows at the night sky, a soft smile on her lips, no thoughts in her mind but the innocent playfulness that seemed to be unraveling itself, no worries of death or the demise of her opponent. To her, it was still simply a game.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Sun Mar 17, 2013 3:56 pm

    With little choice Ethan follows a couple steps behind Fern as she walks down a sparsely decorated hall. Set on either side and spaced perfectly are some rather old paintings which he decides are of the Hollow's long family line of ages past. Occasionally there is a small table with a vase of winter flower adorning it to bring more color into the otherwise dark walk. Casting a quick glance upwards Ethan notices his imp following at a safe distance. Turning his gaze back foward he finds himself about to try walking through Fern and just manages to stop before running into her.

    ***

    "I must tell you, since her training started i have made attempts for her to try and kill mice and such things as that. Hardly similar to a human, except for being a living creature that is, but she hasnt been able to do it. No, i dont believe she could kill anything let alone someone she considers a friend." Lysander sets his glass down and looks outside towards Ethans first move.

    "I have never held such trials for my son. He seems more at home creating rather then destroying as evidenced by his first move. Im not su lre if he has even found a killing spell in the books hes buried himself in over time." Terrance looks back towards the door wondering what his son will do next, and how the game will progress once they figure out about the other.

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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sun Mar 17, 2013 5:32 pm

    There was no time for a full tour, and Fern thought it would be best to let Ethan explore the house on his own accord. It was a rather mysterious manor, endless rooms that held countless treasures. It would be like a small adventure to let him find his own way during the day, and she wasn’t about to take that away from him.
    However, if she had read him properly, what she was about to show him may cause a reaction. Perhaps a move, if he was indeed her opponent, as she was starting to suspect.

    As she got to the door, she stopped, turning to face him and blinking, looking up from under her eyelashes as she found him standing much closer than she anticipated, as if he had just nearly ran into her a moment ago.
    A faint blush caught her cheeks as she took a polite step back, clearing her throat. “I…I apologize for my silence, I am not used to having guests. Small talk isn’t my strong suit.” She lowered her gaze, turning to the door she had led them to.
    “However, please do not think I have nothing to say.” She said with a clever grin to Ethan as she opened the door, the smell of ink and paper making her sigh.

    She had brought them to the library, a hall that wound around with stories of book shelves, with tall ladders that went for miles, and circling stair cases that guided up through rows of cases and desks, each holding books that once had an owner, but were now sprawled out with open pages that were left abandoned to gather dust.
    In the far corner, where the light seemed slightly dim, held a section that was closed off by another door. That was where all of Fern’s scrolls and spell books were held, along with some of her father’s darker books that were filled with curses and hexes. Books that Fern never dared touch. If Ethan decided to wander that way, he would be greeted with a charmed handle, one that could only be opened by a Hollow.

    With twinkling eyes, Fern turned back to Ethan with a beaming smile breaking her face. “Do you like it? You can come here whenever you please, oh…and try to forgive the mess.” She studied his face for a reaction, eyes wavering from his lips to his fingertips, waiting for any motion that he may cast a spell. However, after a few breaths, nothing happened. With a slightly disappointed sigh, she turned into the library, nearly hanging off one of the railings as she gazed downward, where the room continued on a few levels, including upward.
    How was she going to catch him casting a spell? If he was even her opponent, that is. With every passing second, Fern became less sure of her suspicion.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:52 pm

    Ethan looks around a few moments more before slowly starting his way through the shelves. "Thank you for showing me thi. My fathers doesnt believe i should read nearly as much as i do." As he walks down the row Ethan starts trying to read a few of the titles to his right. With little light and a fair amount of dust he stops and moves for a closer inspection. Still hardly able to read the fine script Ethan checks over his should to see if he is alone. Not completely sure if he is and with the light quickly fading he turns back towards the enterance not wanting to be late for dinner.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sun Mar 17, 2013 11:25 pm

    Fern didn’t bother to follow Ethan as he began looking at books, both in the shelves and the ones splayed across the desks. She simply leaned against the door frame, hugging herself as she lowered her gaze to her shoes, where her toes met and pointed together like a ragdoll.
    “Idiot.” She murmured to herself, sure that Ethan could not hear her. Of course he didn’t display any king of magic, even in the enchanting halls and endless bookcases of the library. Fern was left standing, empty handed, with no more information than when she had been in the dining room only minutes earlier.

    Watching Ethan disappear into a hall of shelves, she found her emotions getting the better of her, which never ended well whenever it was a negative mood. She felt stupid and silly, for leading Ethan around in hopes that she could unravel whatever little secret that caused their fathers to smile at each other. As if sensing her mood, one of the vases that occupied a side table just outside the library began to quiver.

    Distracted by her thoughts, Fern did not notice, and closed her eyes as she shook her head at herself. The vase began to rattle on the table, daring to fall from the edge if she became any more upset. And when her eyes fluttered open, her gaze was locked on the porcelain that seemed to be drifting through the air in slow motion. Breath catching, one of her hands flew out, although she stood much too far away to catch the thing.
    Flowers tumbled out, along with water that followed, but the vase stayed hovering peacefully in the air, a hair’s breath away from the ground. Gathering herself, and with a soft wave of her gloved fingers, the vase found its way back to the table, then the water, with the flowers returning to their place as if nothing had happened.

    She needed to be more careful.
    Whenever Fern forgot to close off her emotions, her magic slipped through. Which was a great annoyance for her father, Lysander, for he had never encountered anyone who could do such a thing. And as a result, punished her whenever he caught her slip.
    Ethan emerged just as Fern was catching her breath, brushing off the front of her corset, which was making her rather light headed.
    “Shall we be getting back, then?” Fern offered with a polite nod of her head, her friendly smile not quite convincing enough.
    As they walked back down the hall, Fern could not shake the eerie feeling that she was being watched.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:14 am

    Mildly annoyed at the uncomfortable silence Ethan speaks softly in the quiet hall. "You and your father have a nice collection for a library. Thank you for showing me where it is. Im sure i'll be spending more than a few hours going through and finding new authors i don't know. Do you have any suggestions?"

    In a passing glance Ethan notices a look of unease on Fern's profile and looks back to see his imp staring at her intently. Silently communicating with the imp he sends it off to search the house for the cause of his earlier unease in the dining room. Quickly the invisible creature flies past the two of them off on his mission.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:59 am

    Ethan’s voice echoed warmly through the empty halls, and Fern eased her tense shoulders slightly, releasing her bottom lip which she had started to bite.
    “The medical journals in the far right corner are always so…interesting.” She hummed her response quietly, as if not even aware she was speaking. Passing a dark window, she caught a glimpse of the foliage that was a rather new appearance in the manor. A little gift from her opponent, who could very well be standing right next to her.

    “However, asking me for a favourite author would be like asking a mother whom their favourite child could be.” She turned to him with a sheepish smile, her head tilting to the side faintly as she frowned, gaze falling over Ethan’s attire.
    With a step toward him, she gently touched his collar, and the front of his vest, brushing off the dust that had no doubt caught on him from the library. A tickle in her throat caused her to laugh faintly, her nose scrunching up as she tried not to sneeze. “Perhaps we should return to the dining room.” She let her hands drop after a moment, not quite meeting his gaze as she brushed past him toward the hall they had entered in earlier.

    A moral dilemma arose in Fern’s thoughts as she walked, keeping pace with Ethan easily, but turning her face away so he would not see her frown. If he was her opponent, was it wise of her to be so friendly? It was a competition, after all. However, he seemed safe enough. Nice enough that Fern had almost given herself away countless times. Perhaps he was not her opponent, however she had to be sure. They met the two older men in the dining room after a few silent minutes, taking their seats as the supper was served.

    * * *

    Terrance and Lysander had traded their glasses of brandy for small cups of coffee, chatting like old maids to one another with no real topic to their discussion.
    Until Lysander blinked, a slow smile spread across his stubbly muzzle. “So, you finally told the boy you’re not his real father.”
    Terrance raised an eyebrow, wondering how his friend could possibly know that, before he tipped his head back and let out a loud bark of a laugh. “Yes, it appears I did.”
    “He’s become more distant, I noticed.” Lysander sat back in his chair, his untouched cup of coffee steaming in front of him.
    Terrance nodded, a more grim smile tainting his features. “Well, that was unavoidable. I did not believe he would just brush past the fact, but I had to tell him before the game truly began.” He shrugged one shoulder, leaning forward with a glint catching his eye. “Did you tell your daughter about her mother yet? Or is that best left tucked away under lock and key.”

    Lysander’s smile dropped, and he looked away from his friend for the first time that evening, his face becoming unnaturally calm. “She wouldn’t understand.” He shook his head. Fern’s mother’s suicide was something he had never come to tell her. Her magical moods were much too dangerous to bring up such a topic to someone so…fragile.
    “Ah, well dear friend, she will find out sooner or later.” Terrance frowned at himself lightly, slightly annoyed at himself for bringing the subject up, for it had noticeably put off the lighthearted conversation.

    Ethan and Fern joined them once more in the dining room, and the meal was served perfectly. However, there was a faint tension between the two old men. It faded after a few more drinks, as the candles began to burn low.

    * * *

    Supper was uneventful, however many times Fern’s gaze drew toward the young man across from her. At one point, she gazed down at her silver goblet of deep red wine, and dipped her finger in it. The motion she made was microscopic, and went unnoticed by the dinner party, however, it made her smile faintly.
    As she brought the glass to her lips, the wine was a sparkling white instead of crimson red, one she much preferred at supper.
    Soon, the plates were cleared and more bottles and jars filled with bronze liquid were brought out. Fern found that she had already had quite enough to drink, and stood after a moment, blinking away the dizzy bubbles in her mind that lingered from the wine.
    “Mr. Calvert, it would be a shame to get lost in the Manor at such a late hour. Would you like a guide to your room?” She brought her gaze once more to Ethan, with a polite smile.
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    A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:30 pm

    "Since you offer so kindly, and as i am a guest in your home it would be most disrespectful for me to disagree." As he finishes his glass of wine left over from dinner Ethan stands groggily. "Mr. Hollow, dinner was wonderful. But alas, I have consumed too much of your generosity I fear. Goodnight gentlemen." Turning away from the table slowly his gaze falls on Fern and embarrassment falls upon him at seeing her appear to be unaffected by her wine.

    "Goodnight children. Tomorrow we shall discuss our plans for the day over breakfast." Lysander suppresses a chuckle seeing the embarrassment as it came over the young man.

    "Goodnight Ms. Hollow. Ethan, do be careful please. Accident prone as you are we wouldnt enjoy it very much if you fell down a flight of stairs in your drunkenness." Terrance lets a light laughter follow his statement as he turns back to his conversation with his oldest friend.

    As Ethan catches the laughter he turns a suddenly malevolent look coming to his visage at the old mans attempt to embarrass him further. "Following Fern through the door he notices his imp floating in a corner. After a quick set of instructions sent through his established telepathic link to the creature he turns his thoughts to other matters. "Thank for showing me to my room. I had thought i would be shown," a sudden laughter breaks Ethans though for a moment. Barely concealing his amusement he finishes his sentance. "To it by one of your attendants."

    -----

    Back in the dining room Terrance is forced to join Lysander in his laughter as he inspects his staining shirt. Snapping his fingers the coffee and shattered cup go back as they were a moment before when Ethans imp blew it up. Looking over to the now visible imp Terrance utters a quick spell to break Ethans summons and sends the creature back to its plane. "It seems he got alittle worked up at my joke towards his drunkenness. " Smiling to himself terrance takes a sip of his coffee and sets the cup back on its saucer, a look of satisfaction on his face.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sun Mar 31, 2013 10:31 am

    This walk along the dark halls of Hollow Manor was much more eventful then their last, as Ethan’s bubbling laughter seemed to wrap around them warmly.
    Fern could not conceal her smile as she wound her arm around his, steadying him on the stairs. “It’s not an inconvenience, and the company is not too bad either.” She said, letting the words tumble out past her lips before she could really filter them. Perhaps she would have been better off without those last few glasses of wine…

    “And I am less likely to allow you to…’fall down a flight of stairs,’ as your father put it.” She added, letting him lean against her slightly on the last step, grinning in amusement at how she was not the only one getting loose lipped.
    The halls didn’t spin, nor did the floor seem uneasy to walk on for Fern, however she had lost the icy clarity that she had held onto before supper. This realization made her smile drop into a small twist of her lips, upper lip pouting slightly.

    All of the guest suits were rather similar, with a large bed accompanied by dressers and end tables, a generously sized parlor, powder room and office along with a small balcony that overlooked the gardens. Fern stopped outside his door, suddenly feeling stupid and shy, as if all her coy flirting and banter had made him think she was just a silly girl.
    “Your bags will be just inside, Mr.Calvert.” She said to the floor, before gazing upward cautiously. A faint smile softened her features and she sighed, opening the door for him and taking his hand. “Come along, it might be a little chilly out but a bit of fresh air will do you good.” She ignored the feelings of awkward shyness and led him past the parlor to the balcony, careful to walk at a safe speed. His soft stumbling footsteps made her laugh girlishly under her breath, as she stole a glimpse back. His cheeks were taking on a light pink, and his eyes were glittering with amusement that probably came from the alcohol. All of this only made Fern shake her head, feeling like a governess taking care of a young man who had been given his first drinks at a dinner party.

    The crisp autumn air was welcoming, as she dropped his hand to open the set of large glass doors, breeze catching on her loose curls of hair as she stepped out, turning back to face him with her hand reaching outward, silently asking him to join her.
    “Aren’t those flowers lovely? Mmm, our new foliage is quite eye-catching.” Fern’s soft, girlish voice cut through the air after a moment, gazing down at how the frost was beginning to take hold of the white rose bushes and lavender. This comment would seem like small talk, however, Fern did not look away from Ethan as she spoke. Perhaps in his state, he would reveal some mysteries about himself that Fern was dying to know. Maybe he would even make his move, which would be rather interesting. Alcohol and magic tended to make a curious mixture...however this all relied on whether he was her opponent, or if he was just a man. A man that Fern had found herself alone with on countless occasions within the past few days. This thought made her blink, the icy clarity returning to her mind as she gently raised her hands, removing the white silk gloves from her hand and laying them out delicately on the balcony rail.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Mon Apr 01, 2013 12:42 pm

    A moment of pride fills Ethan as he admires his spell work. "I'll admit its quite a thing to see roses in bloom as winter draws in." Turning around Ethan takes in the stark contrast of the night sky in the countryside so different from his city home. Twin towers at opposing ends of the Victorian home draw Ethan's interest for a minute as his eyes before continuing over the architecture.

    The large windows of his room act as a mirror as he silently lets his eyes roam over Fern looking at the garden below. The mild breeze feels refreshing acting to slowly sober the young man. Approaching a comfortable distance from the young woman Ethan joins her at the railing."Why do you keep addressing me so formally? Im not much older then you are, nor would anyone believe that i am your superior in anyway."
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Tue Apr 02, 2013 6:54 pm

    Fern could not help but smile at his observation, cocking her head to the side and listening to the way the alcohol only effected his speech slightly, in a more charming way than a tired fashion. Turning, Fern gracefully hopped up onto the balcony, curving her legs so they dangled past the darkness below, the foliage no longer looking beautifully harmless, but now a dangerous drop.
    However, she knew that even if she fell, not a bone in her body would be difficult for her to heal. Unfazed by the height, she gazed out at the moon, which was slowly turning itself back into a small fingernail sliver of opal.

    “Would you prefer me to call you Ethan? It is a rather nice name, not one to be hidden by formalities and titles, no?” She mused mostly to herself in her curious voice, doll-like eyes blinking as they looked over to study the young man.
    With a fluttering laugh, she leaned back to gaze at him more openly, the breeze catching on her skirts and tickling the small space of skin where her boots did not quite meet her stockings. An odd girl, Ms. Hollow was, the chilly air of the opaque night only made her mind more sharp, her dark eyes sparkling more than the wine.

    “Strange indeed.” Her voice lost a bit of its playful lit, but kept it’s curiosity as she curved her legs once more, hopping down from the railing and onto the stone balcony with a dancer-like quality, “However, I have come to believe that is not the only strange thing in this Manor, don’t you agree?” Fern took one last daring step toward him, searching his face with her ghostly eyes for any clue that he was behind the magic that mirrored hers, making the air thick with electricity, as if she could reach one of her long pale fingers out to touch him, and she would only be shocked. At the thought, she turned, grabbing her silk gloves off of the stone and walking toward the door.
    For reasons unknown to her, the small scar shaped as a pocket watch on her wrist felt as if it were burning.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:44 am

    "You most certainly may address me as simply Ethan, though i wouldnt infringe on your personal preference." As she swing off the balcony with a deft movement Ethan supresses the urge to smile at the grace with which she gently lands once more on the cool stone. Down in the windows over looking the garden cast a soft light of their own accord.

    "To answer your question, i do believe there is a mysterious quality at work here, however there are many mysterious and strange things in this world. While i do enjoy puzzeling through them all, not everything has an answer." Turning as Fern begins to walk inside his mind works the puzzle silently plaguing his thoughts, adding a new one to the growing list. 'Just what is she trying to discern about me?' A spur of the moment impulse, mixed with a rather odd sensation to the young man, drives his next question. "Would you like to share in a dance?"

    Ethan slides his hands into his pockets feeling embarassment fall over him once again leaving him to wonder why he feels so drawn to the young woman. Sure he enjoys Fern's company as she is around the same age and is quite stunning to behold, but the air of curiosity is what draws his attention the most.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sat Apr 06, 2013 11:38 am

    Fern’s fingertips had hardly even brushed the door that led out to the balcony, when she paused. Her face fell to the ground when she heard his voice, like a child shying away when they meet a stranger. With an amused smile, she looked over her shoulder at him, where he stood with his hands buried deep in his pockets, as if his fingers could find her answer to his question in their fabric.
    “A dance?” She turned, leaning her back against the glass door, folding and unfolding her silk gloves in her hands and looking up to the sky as if she were pondering her response. The slight twist of her pouting lips made it obvious that she already knew how she would answer.

    After a moment, she pressed off the glass door, and gently placed her gloves on the edge of a potted plant, looking down at her dress and neatly brushing off the front of her corset. “A dance sounds lovely.” She stepped toward him with her pale, elegant hand out toward him, palm facing the sky.

    Fern’s coy smile faltered for a moment as she looked at him, a curious tilt of her head giving her the appearance as if she could gaze straight through someone’s soul with those large, dark eyes. She wondered if he was purposefully replying to her inquiries in a mysterious way, or if he truly didn’t know just how strange this house was. In a blink, her face had returned to its amused smile, as if nothing about Ethan unsettled her. She was far too interested in how they were both going to keep in step with the bubbly fog of wine over their heads, and no music.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:59 pm

    Not completely expecting, or better yet believing that Fern would accept his invitation Ethan looks back over his shoulder for a split second. In that moment he finds a gentle rhythm being played as the fountain in the garden sends a soft jet into its basin. The gentle rustle of leaves accompanies the soft melody of running water in an odd song that only nature can produce and calms Ethans racing heart. Smiling past his discomfort he takes Ferns hand gently in his own. "In advance i'd like to apologise if i seem like a lousy partner, i dont get to practice very often."

    Backing towards the center of the balcony Ethan leads Fern with him. Mimicking the couples dancing at her party a few nights ago Ethan akwardly wraps his arm around Fern's waist. Imagining the band in the background he begins a waltz of sorts, where only he can hear the music.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:07 pm

    Before Fern could grin, flutter a girlish laugh across the garden, or even blush, she was silent. The second her bare, babysoft palm touched his. It was a faint tingle at first, that caused a ghostlike silence to wash over her.
    However, as they slowly started to twirl, the feeling began to grow. Mainly in her wrist, as an icy burning. Somehow ice cold yet fiery hot as it spread.

    Magic. She could feel it in the both of them, and she felt her eyes widen as she stared at his chest, trying to turn face down so he wouldn’t see how the cogs in her brain were starting to click together. It had to be him, the way their skin met and caused her to feel this strange…hot ice coursing through her veins, the feeling strongest in her wrist. Right on her scar. The only thing that was slowly making her start to feel a sickly unease, was wondering how long he had know who she was, and that they were opponents in this competition. For she had just figured it out.

    To a stranger, this scene they were painting would perhaps seem quite lovely. A chilly night, with two young people dancing to the beat of each other breathing. The young man faintly awkward and embarrassed, and the young lady unable to meet his gaze, a faint pink tone appearing on her soft cheeks.
    However, with a sharp intake of breath, Fern took a quick step away. Her eyes were glossy with unanswered questions, and she appeared to be confused, eyebrows rising and lips pulling together as she bit her lower one.
    “I…” She noticed that as soon as she was not touching him anymore, that the feeling had vanished. However, her staggered heart beat was still making it hard to form a proper string of words.

    “It’s late. Thank you for the dance, it was lovely.” She was already passing through the door as she spoke, the playful grins and laughter vanished from her lips, leaving them behind along with her tiny silk gloves on the edge of a potted plant. She had not lied, it was lovely. However, after preparing to meet her opponent for her whole life…Fern was still left shell shocked by this realization.

    She got to her room after a few minutes of walking through the hall, nearly tripping over her skirts in the process. However, after she had her back pressed against the wood of her own door, she couldn’t stop the little giggles that seemed to escape her lips. This game was getting interesting much faster than she thought, and as she dimmed the warm lights and tried to stop the buzzing of her thoughts, she let her little puff of a white kitten, Milo, curl around the nape of her neck.
    Morning didn’t break soon enough.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:53 am

    Collecting the young woman's gloves from the por on which they lay Ethan contemplated trying to find Fern's room to return them. Thinking it wiser to wait until morning he dismisses the thought upon entering his appointed room. Laying out on his bed Ethan replays the event ls since leaving their fathers in the dining room. A faint tingle, like the sensation after a bug bite, crawls over his body at the memory of Fern's touch.

    Looking over the bare wall opposite the bed an idea takes root in the young mans mind. Before he realizes what hes doing he utters a quick spell creating a luminous summoning circle in one corner of the room. After an inspection to check his pentagram for flaws, and finding none present, Ethan begins a longer spell to of summons. On completion he waits silently watching for the a sign of manifestation.

    As his eyelids begin to get heavy a dark cloud forms in the circle. The cloud expands and takes on the figure on a human standing in around five and a half feet tall with well defined muscles like those of and athelete. The figure wears a suit of black plate armor, spikes jutting from the keen and elbow joints and ringing the top of its helm. Eyes the color of hellfire flare inside the eyeslits and dim down quickly to an almost nonexistent glow. Strapped to the figured back the pommel of a bastard sword can be seen with the last foot of the scabbard ending just above its knee. Impressed with the guardian demon of his summons Ethan slumps back on the bed exausted from the days experiences.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Avalon on Sat Apr 13, 2013 3:01 pm

    Fern was dressed and in a new pair of white silk gloves before the sun even broke past the horizon. The small, delicate silver spoon in her porcelain tea cup stirred itself as she lifted a lazy finger, setting a spell on her tea so it wouldn’t get too cold, nor too hot.
    In the library, she sat buried with a stack of dusty books and scrolls, pouring through them. She had hidden herself away in the office, a small locked room that only opened to a Hollow’s touch. It held all of the enchanted orbs, spell tomes, and even a black crow that rustled its feathers in the dark silence. Its eyes held something strangely human, as it watched the young woman sitting at a desk that seemed much too small for the number of books it was holding, the candle light casting the room in eerie shadows, although the beginning of the morning sun had begun to stream through the boarded up windows. The same desk that two men had sat at nineteen years ago when they planned out this game.

    A turn of the door handle caused Fern to gaze upward, a curl slipping into her line of sight. Lysander Hollow stepped into the study, and as he spotted his daughter, he raised one eyebrow in confusion.
    “My dear, I hope you have not been here all night.” He spoke, closing the door behind him with a click and walking toward a shelf. A deep red book floated out of the book case, and into his hands, where the pages began to flow like water beneath his fingers.
    “No, I haven’t been here long.” Fern closed the large, dusty book she had been going through only moments before, scrunching her nose up to refrain from sneezing.

    Lysander paused, looking over at her with a more amused look tainting his features. “You know something, dear daughter. Care to share this knowledge?”
    “I know who my opponent is.” Fern answered simply, a faint smile making her look down, tucking the curl behind her ear.
    “Ah yes, finally. It took you long enough. Pushing you two together was starting to get tedious.” Lysander scoffed, watching how his daughter seemed to become slightly shy on the topic of her opponent, even now that she knew who it was. He had expected her to gush about her knew found knowledge, not keep to herself. She was much more mysterious than he figured.

    In behind the stacks of books and dust, the midnight black crow cleaned its feathers, watching the exchange between father and daughter with its oddly human eyes. He watched as Lysander set his book back on its shelf, and bent down to his daughter’s desk to blow out her candle. He watched as Fern gathered her delicately pale cream skirts around her, standing and letting her father walk her out. And eerily, the crow watched as the door to the study clicked closed, its secrets remaining inside.

    “Come, dear Isobel. The Calvert’s must be awake by now, and breakfast appears to be ready.” Lysander grinned as he walked to the dining room with his daughter, glad that she had finally figured out Ethan was her opponent in their challenge.
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    Re: A New Game

    Post by Wraith on Sun Apr 14, 2013 1:55 am

    Waking up ethan stretches with a long yawn. Opening his eyes to the light shining though his window he looks to the corner where his summons stands immoble. Taking i the demon guards appearance n the daylight Ethans breath is taken away by all the detail. The figures armor is black plate whose edges are rimmed with dark red the color of dried blood. Upon the chestplate runes are etched in binging the spirit to the armor like a demonsteel tomb. The figures musculature is well defined, bulging in noticeable knots a cords of raw power.

    Approaching his suitcase Ethan quickly casts a spell to cloak the figure and the pentagram in which it stands. A shift of inflection on the last syllable finishes his work so power is drawn from the demon rather then the young man. Once he finishes dressing he takes a look in the mirror to adjust his tie. The reclection shows his physical exaustion from the night previous as he begins fidgeting with the maroon fabric of his tie. Once finished he grabs the discarded gloves of lastnight and places them into a pocket before leaving his room to find his father.

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    Re: A New Game

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