Hint: Hover over a field name if you want to know what it's for.

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Sat Mar 7, 2020 4:29 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Feeling the change in the magic around the area as her words angered Fenriz. To some, her words may have seemed uncalled for, but the vampire had to deal with the harsh reality that he would be hunted and hated for what he is softening her words would do nothing for the boy as he has been robbed of his childhood just as many others had. Keeping her neutral expression as Fenriz began to tear up as he faced her. Unflinched by Fenriz's emotion as it was for his own good, the Vampire was too emotional to childish even if it was unfair he needed to grow up.

Defeated Fenriz broke eye contact. "Don't apologize it's not your fault". Keep her eyes on the boy as she wanted him to be strong she caught his mumbling. "Because of what you are, if you were just a child your life would be a lot less dangerous". Closening in on Fenriz she gently placed her hand on the Vampires' head as she gently stroked his ivory hair. "I know it's unfair, but that is how the world is. I wish I could remove this curse from you and take all your troubles away". Pausing as she was about to apologize for her lack of ability and for being just like others for threatening his life. "While you are far from strong in battle you are strong in spirit. Physical and Magical strength can be gained, a strong character is much more difficult to attain. Remain diligent and your ability will rival that of your kindness".

Continuing on for a bit more as Fenriz was either lost in thought or Lixue's gentle touch, even the Priestess herself was beginning to lose herself in the moment as the quiet and serene moment felt nice as the Undead had far few personal interactions with others ever since her rebirth. As her hand combed through Fenriz's hair she thought back to how she used to lay with her sister as she did the very same thing when she was worried or frightened. Staring out onto the frozen ruins she relaxed as she ended her consoling of Fenriz as if she continued she might not want to stop.

Listed off nearby cities after she had hopefully eased Fenriz's worries even slightly. Watching as the Vampire drifted yet again into thought as she mayhap had given the boy too much to think on as choices did not seem to be his strong suit. She hoped that he picked Namiba as it was the safest choice, but children often do not think of what is best for them.

With an excited request to go to the 'bug city' Lixue's concerns grew as she did say that she would take him anywhere. Kwama might be difficult as it is always moving and the map I have only shows the path the city tends to take. Even with the general idea, it would just be an educated guess as to where the city might be and opening gates randomly to locate it would be reckless as I could very well open one in someone's home or on someone. Trying not to think of what a gate would do if placed upon someone Lixue's concerns about how to get to Kwama would be lifted as Fenriz changed his mind.

"I have not, but give me a moment". Summoning a map of Onnen in her hand the Priestess scanned the map to find the location of the Chroma Isles. "It's an island between the Makua Mountains and the Sua Bay". Looking back to Fenriz as he had his serious face on again she wondered what she had done this time. Staring at the Vampire in confusion as she waited for whatever lecture he had prepared for her only to be confused as he asked her to take him there. "… I can". Facing the opposite direction of Fenriz Lixue looked to the map and calculated the latitude and longitude of a corner of the island that was unlikely to have anyone or anything nearby. Sending her map away and clapped her hand together as two magic circles formed around her wrists. Pulling them apart as she formed a small gate in between her hand she would expand it and place it in front of her showing a beach facing out into the sea as the sounds of birds and the tide echoed out from the outside of the gate. Looking to Fenriz with a smile, "Preparation complete, shall we enter"?

Author: drbuck, Posted: Sat Mar 7, 2020 1:18 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

As she explained how to use it, Fen continued to marvel at the talisman laying across his hands. Only once she finished her tutorial did he finally tuck it away into a small satchel he kept on him. In all the excitement of even being given the thing in the first place, he did only just realize he hadn't bothered to ask how it worked in the first place. He sighed a mental sigh of relief that he was given that information before the time in which he needed it.

To the surprise of none, the boy was less than happy about her response. Agitated shadows around them began to tremble as his young eyes barely holding back frustrated tears met her look of displeasure. His first instinct was to yell at her, and passionately explain how he just wanted to help. Even if, by his own admission even, she wasn't wrong about it, being called a hindrance aloud stung considerably. The entire situation was one that Fenriz was familiar with, as it was one he occasionally found himself in with his father, who would respond to his desire to provide assistance in a similarly blunt and harsh manner. More than once his mother had to remind him that he was only saying this out of concern for his own safety. Remembering her words, he decided against his brewing, passionate rant.

"You're right, I'm sorry Miss Lixue. I'll keep practicing, for now" Feeling defeated, he broke eye contact before mumbling to himself "If kids shouldn't have to fight for their lives then how come so many people wanna kill me?"

This brief moment of self-awareness about his own life began to snowball into further reflection. Slowly that frustration began to mold into determination. If he was a hindrance now, he was going to was going to work so hard that nobody could call him that again. By the time they found each other again, even his father would have to acknowledge how far his son had come in their absence.

Lost in his own thoughts, it didn't initially register that Lixue had started speaking again. Only once she mentioned Cameroon did her words penetrate his mind. The boy knew that she was likely correct about Namiba. He knew from personal experience that the city was safer than most he had traveled to. But a city in the trees? A city on a giant bug? How could he possibly pass that up.

"Let's go to the bug city!" he blurted out excitedly. As tempting as a city high in the trees was a tempting sight, Kwama would prove just a bit more tempting. But even then, there was something still nagging at the back of his mind. Something he felt like he had to do.

"Actually, Miss Lixue have you heard of a place called the Chroma Isles? I overheard someone talking about it in Namiba" Once more the boy donned his "serious face". While both Kwama and Cameroon were certainly interesting sounding places, places that he would be sure to visit in due time. But when he heard about the isles, they too where a place he wanted to see with his own eyes. Wanting to jump start his training made the low population even more tempting. When he heard about it, he wasn't sure how he was going to make it in the first place. Well, now it seemed he had the means to get there. Of course getting back was going to be a challenge, but that involved far more foresight than he was really capable of. "If you don't mind, can you take me there?"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Fri Mar 6, 2020 3:25 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

"Of course I offered it to you". Confused as to why Fenriz looked at nothing but a simple piece of paper with such reverence. The reality of it was that the only thing special about the talisman was the spell she placed upon it. Waiting for Fenriz's fascination with something fairly basic to Lixue, however, the Undead did not expect the hug from the Vampire. Stiffening slightly as her muscle memory almost kicked in as the boy wrapped his arms around her. Looking straight ahead as the Priestess processed how they went from enemies to now physically touching in such a short time. She had never once even so much as thought about hugging or showing empathy to the Undead before her unlife and her meeting with Fenriz. Creeking her hands forward as she slowly started to encase her arms around Fenriz as he promised to take care of the talisman. As her arms were about to entrap the Vampire he broke from his surprise hug leaving Lixue in an awkward state. Quickly placing her arms at her sides as she held her welcoming smile. "I believe that promise would be more of a benefit to yourself than me as the Talisman is meant to help you not me".

Hoping that her words put his concerns to rest, however, Fenriz's next words and actions insulted the Undead somewhat. Looking back to the Vampire with a mildly displeased expression as he looked to her with suspicion as he questioned her ability and her word. With both, his concern of her arm and concern of her word Lixue explained how the spell worked as he examined her arm. "When you find yourself in danger or feel as if you are in need, hold the Talisman in your hand and think of myself and what troubles you. Your emotions will act as the beacon which will allow me to find where you are''. While she would often say that emotions get in the way of casting magic to Dala, emotions were not completely useless in magic as they are required for much less combat orientated magic.

With her arm free and her slip of the tongue placing her in a more difficult spot, as she looked to a starstruck Fenriz as he seemed to have completely forgotten her past mistakes. Although her distraction had worked her bribed placed her in a difficult position. While she may have said anywhere there were places you could not transport the boy to as there were plenty of places outside and in the physical world that were, of course, denied to her. Listening to Fenriz thought aloud it seemed as if his requited would not be impossible for her as he spoke of cities and islands. Unsure of who Raziel was, but with the mention of guild stuff Lixue would assume that he was an adventure that the boy had met on his travels.

Remaining patient as Fenriz thought of where he wanted to go as the Vampire seemed to be having trouble when it came to a location. Even he spoke, Lixue was both relieved and mildly disappointed as it seemed as though Fenriz had gotten himself lost. His request while simple placed the Undead in a bit of a quandary. The Priestess had planned on continuing to train after Fenriz's departure though with the Boy's request to follow along with her if she was heading to another location gave her pause. If I tell him I'm going to stay to train no doubt he'll want to stay and watch even if I refuse him. I suppose I could leave as I can always come back whenever I wish to train as there is always something threatening the people.

As Lixue pondered on her next action, Fenriz's words invaded her mind. "It depends on the question". Refocusing her attention back on Fenriz as he seemed concerned about something yet again. "I do", She felt as if she knew where this line of questioning would lead to, but she humoured the boy anyway.

"No one anymore".

"Probably not, but it's what I've been born to do being undead does not change that in fact, it places more precedence on it".

"Using my words against me again"? Giving Fenriz a faint smile as she doubted that this conversation would end on a happy note breaking her promise yet again. "Exactly, you cannot do much as you are. It does not matter how much you wish to help as the fact of the matter is that you will be a hindrance more than a help. As I have said before, focus on yourself children should not have to fight for their lives". Staring down at Fenriz as she showed her displeasure at Fenriz's recklessness. Perhaps she was being too harsh on the boy as her own student's recklessness was still fresh in her mind. "There are three cities past the marsh Namiba the home to the tribes of the Sandawe Savanna. It would be a good place for you as no violence is allowed within the city. Cameroon a city anchored among the trees or Kwama a city atop the back of a giant insect. I would suggest Namiba as you'll be safe and plenty of darker creatures attempting to exploit the peace of the area for their own gain". Keeping her gaze upon Fenriz as he made his choice while the Undead thought on how to keep Fenriz from doing anything reckless. If need be I'll cut ties and destroy the trust that was built if it means that he stays out of trouble.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Fri Mar 6, 2020 1:16 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Her smile and reassurance helped assuage his feelings somewhat, although his still crossed arms suggested it wasn’t quite enough. “I don’t need any help” he mumbled, his frustration more stemming from the fact that he knew she was right. As it was prone to do, however, his mood changed as soon as she handed him a gift.

"Miss Lixue, can I really have this?" His eyes glistening as he stared down the talisman as if he had discovered an ancient treasure. To him, it may as well be. The fact that she trusted him with any magical item after all that had happened was, at least to him, a sign of belief in him. But moreover, the idea of having someone he could call on when things got rough made his goals feel that much more obtainable. Beaming, he threw his arms around her, in a brief, albeit forceful hug “I promise to take good care of it! And I definitely will only use it when I absolutely need to!”

The Fenriz from before he had met Lixue likely would have tried to use it on the spot, just to see it in action. But if there was anyone he knew that would not approve of such a frivolous use, it was of course Lixue. Hopefully she realized that the lessons she had imparted on him were already sinking in.

Speaking of promises, however

"And you promise you'll show up if I use this?" he insisted, looking at her with a suspicious gaze. Once he had gotten to know someone, he could be surprisingly trusting of that person. But that still didn't change the fact that, in his mind at least, she had already violated the promise they had made.

Suspicions continued when she raised her arm. It was clear from his rapidly moving eyes he was checking for a single blemish, one scar, or the smallest blemish. His inspection revealed nothing, sparing her from another childish lecture. Although relieved she was uninjured, his concern for her well-being persisted as she explained her plans once they went their separate ways. Fenriz was about to voice his concerns, but she presented a far more interesting offer.

"Anywhere? Really?" he said once more with wide eyes. If he hadn't forgiven the undead woman before, it was certainly all water under the bridge now, if he even remembered what he was upset about in the first place. Though the offer did present a bit of a problem. He wasn't exceptionally concerned with where she would take him. He was, after all, pretty much a wanderer. Until he had a solid lead on where he could find his parents, he never really had an specific destination in mind, and although he was certainly happy with what he did find, this endeavor had been largely disappointing in that department. Placing a finger to his temple, he began to wonder aloud "Hmm… I guess I could go meet up with Raziel again, but she might be busy with guild stuff. I didn't really find anything in that city either, but it was nice. Oh, there's those islands I heard about. They sound really nice. Hmm…"

After what seemed like minutes of deliberation, he still hadn't come to a solid destination. Turning his attention back to her he explained his predicament "To be honest Miss Lixue I don't really have anywhere I have to be.I probably can't get back through the marshes the same way again though, so if I can have your help getting to the other side, I would really appreciate it. Or if you're headed somewhere I can go that way, too. I'm really not picky"

He ended his request with a smile, although thinking of where she was headed next made him remember what he was going ask her. The same concerned expression he had shown her several times returned to his face.

"Miss Lixue before we split up can I ask you something? You travel around and fight monsters right? But who helps you when you need it? Surely you cant do all that alone. Someone really smart told me you gotta be able to help yourself before you can help others" a teasing smile crept over his face as he paraphrased her own words "I might not be able to do much, but if you ever do want my help I'll try my best!"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Wed Mar 4, 2020 2:40 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Staring back at Fenriz in confusion as the boy called her out on her broken promise. "I don't know what you mean"? Leaning slightly away from Fenriz as he placed his hand on his hips looking slightly upset about something she may have said. The action looked similar to how Huiling would have acted aside from the pointing and gesturing as she went on about how her younger sister was either too hard on herself or too reckless. With the mention of her promise, the Priestess' promise snapped to the forefront of her mind. "I was not admonishing myself I was merely apologies for my poor company and lack of experience as your senior". Even with her explanation, Fenriz did not seem happy as he sighed and looked into the Undead's dull steel eyes as he continued.

Unsure if Fenriz was scolding or praising her as he went on to compliment her rather than continue to remind the Undead about her mistake and not to speak of herself in such a way. "If you were just a boy I would not have to tell you such things, however, you have been placed in a difficult position that even adults have fallen to. Withholding information would do nothing to help you succeed". While it may be hard Fenriz had shown himself capable of ruling over his life instead of his thirst taking hold of his life. As Fenriz seemed to be at the end of his reproval of her his soften glance focused on the Priestess' arm. "You don't have to worry about my arm it is nothing to worry about".

With the focus shifted back to himself much to Lixue's content as it was far easier to point out his mistakes instead of her own. As he thought on her words he still seemed upset about her broken promise. With her broken promise and her past words Fenriz turned her back to her and seemingly pouted. As he turned to face her and voice his proclamation the Undead smiled. "I can't wait to see your progress, but you should help yourself before you try to help others".

As they faced each other Lixue thought on what would be if Fenriz kept his promise. Would he become a vampire how controlled his thirst and used his gifts to help instead of harm? She very much wished so as she believed that the boy had the ability to though she doubted that he'd be able to do it alone. Pulling out one of her talismans, the Undead would place a magical spell within it and hand it to Fenriz. "Take this, it will call me to you if you need help. I know you want to train and improve yourself without me seeing, but think of it as a last resort for when you don't think you can handle it on your own". She doubted that Fenriz would be too keen on using it even if he was in trouble, but it gave her peace of mind for his and her sake, as well as his actions and mistakes, were hers as well.

With everything said and done Fenriz seemed as if he was ready to leave as he asked her about where the Priestess would be heading to next as well as show more concern about her arm. Raising her arm to Fenriz any damage that may have been inflicted from her magic was gone. "See good as new, nothing to worry about as it is only a side effect of what I am. However, at least I am still able to use my gifts to help others despite of what I am". Tilting her head with her hand on her chin as she thought about what she was going to do next. At the moment she truly had no idea what to do as she was no longer Dala's mentor. "Most likely travel, help others as the world is quite chaotic after the constant attacks from the void. While there is only one of me I'll do my best to help others as my teachings have instructed". Thinking about her last words she held out her hands. "I was not putting myself down merely pointing out a fact… Here, as a way to ask for your forgiveness, I'll transport you to wherever you wish"! Not wanting to break her promise and upset Fenriz yet again she attempted to bribe him to distract him from her mistake. Hopefully, his desire to see cool magic would make him forget her slip of the tongue.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Wed Mar 4, 2020 1:25 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Fen was a little surprised she wasn't aware before. Fen had taken the blood of many races before, so he had little reason to believe that an undead would be an exception. It did however make him wonder if others, those like him, were also suitable candidates. Given the temperament of other vampires, combined with their tendency to be awake at the same hours as himself, however, he figured maybe it was best to let this one stay a mystery. Still, he had, albeit inadvertently, taught something to Lixue, who had imparted a fair amount of knowledge on him, so it made him happy.

It hadn't really occurred to him whilst being held, the state she was in. So excited was he to start chatting, he didn't realize it immediately when he was let go, either. It wasn't until she instructed him to turn around that it clicked, causing his face to turn as red as his eyes as he obeyed her request. Given the amount of time it took for her to readjust, all he could really think about was how troublesome the garment must be. Come to think of it, he had never seen anyone dressed the way Lixue was. She did mention she was from Karith. Was it possible that all people dressed this way? Maybe this was someplace he would have to visit. After all, if the people there were as smart as she was, someone was bound to be able to help him find his parents, or at least give him the knowledge to do it himself

For Fenriz, of the many, many topics he liked to discuss, his family was somewhere near the very top of that list, so long as that conversation was more about the who rather than the what. But unlike hers there was still a chance that his family was still around. To that end, despite his curiosity, he wouldn’t press her to talk about her family, although so long as they knew each other it was certainly a standing offer. While he was, somewhat uncharacteristically, understanding about her reluctance to talk about them, he was significantly less understanding about something else.

“Miss Lixue you did it again” he placed his hands on his hips, a position he had seen his mother take a number of times just before she was about to scold him about something. The sight of the child trying to mimic that of a cross adult was probably far more humorous than Fen intended, but still he continued on “You just promised me that you wouldn’t talk bad about yourself”

He closed his eyes long enough to let out a sigh, then matched her gaze once more as he continued his “lecture”

“Most people don’t tell me nearly as much neat stuff as you have, if they even talk to me at all. Or when I ask them stuff they just say things like ‘You’ll know when your older’” It hadn’t taken long for this to become one of his least favorite phrases to hear, though of course there was always good reasoning behind why he heard it “You’re one of my favorite people I’ve talked to”

If she knew the limited number of people that even gave the boy the time of day, then this wouldn’t come across as a particularly ringing endorsement, but as with most words out of his young mind he meant them with sincerity. His expression softened, diverting his eyes to her arm

“Really you’ve shown more concern for me than most adults. Nobody has just offered me their blood before. But what about you? Shouldn’t we get your arm fixed?”

It was almost as if he had entirely forgotten the event that had transpired only a moment ago. Or perhaps a broken promise was genuinely that much more upsetting than an attempt on his life. He once more shifted his gaze from her arm back to her face. Suddenly, as if he remember he was upset all over again, he turned his back to her, crossing his arms in a huff "Maybe you're right. I'll just practice and practice my magic and you don't get to see it when I'm in full control. I'm gonna help so many people and not show you"

Fenriz knew that wasn't true, and it was likely that Lixue knew too. Despite what it might seem, he really was intent on taking her words, all of the advice and guidance he had offered him to heart, and whether or not the opportunity presented itself, Lixue was likely going to want to be one of the first people he would want to brag to. Perhaps realizing this, he immediately broke the vow of silence he intended to take. He didn't turn around, although that was more out of shame at his minor temper tantrum than anything.

"Do you know what you're going after you leave here? I think my sister is still somewhere nearby. I could maybe have her look at your arm… if you want" as he spoke his tone conveyed he was still somewhat upset, but also more than a little apologetic.

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Sun Mar 1, 2020 6:16 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Lixue awaited Fenriz's bite, but the more she waited, the more she grew more apprehensive of allowing the boy to do so. While she herself has never been bitten by a vampire she has seen the act done on another. The act was brutal as the vampires only cared for their own satisfaction not caring for their victim as they feed. A majority of the time the vampire would break their victim's neck just to get better access to the artery. All of her thoughts on the matter began to change her opinion on the matter of allowing Fenriz to drink her blood. "Fenriz… Ah"! Feeling a sharp prick in her neck as the boy bit down on her neck surprising her more than anything. Just like Fenriz, his bite was gentle, though she was not overly fond of the suction from the Fenriz's mouth as he siphoned the blood from her artery. Is this what a kiss feels like? I've heard of the phrase a vampire's kiss is it similar to a normal kiss? Why would anyone want to do this?

Thankfully Fenriz stopped as his feeding was beginning to make her nauseous and light headed though more from the feeling than the loss of blood. "There was no one else around and I was the cause of your current state. Though I did learn that vampires can drink the blood of the undead so it was at least educational". Helping him stand with her free arm as he almost lost his balance on the ice causing Lixue to almost forget her less than ideal position. Once his balance was retained she looked at the vampire as she faced her as she held up the top half of her clothing as he prepared to speak more seemly blissfully unaware of the Priestess' predicament. "…Excuse me, but Fenriz… Please turn around while I fix my clothing". Facing her back with his bearing her porcelain like skin as she only held up the front part of her clothing. Releasing her hand allowing the front half to fall, Lixue would tie and fix her clothing to properly cover herself once again. Turning back around, "Alright it's safe to turn around, sorry for the interruption".

With her clothing attended to she listened to Fenriz's words as her blood seemed to return the vampire back to his rapid pace. Unsure as to why he classified vampires and undead as different though perhaps it was a sort of pride thing with vampires. As he brought up her family again, Lixue thought on her past for a moment as she only told him the good and only bits and parts of the bad. "Perhaps, though perhaps it is better to be left in the past. While I still love my family there are things that are best left in the past". Looking away for a moment before turning back to Fenriz, "I'm sorry for being such poor company. I should be the one looking after your concerns, not the other way around. I guess I'm not much of an adult". Letting out a defeated laugh as the Priestess could not believe how poorly she had been acting to the child, placing all on her judgments and concerns on him.

Even how poor of company Lixue was, Fenriz took it all in stride as his excitement and wonderment were unshakable. Proclaiming another promise to himself the vampire proclaimed that he would practise his magic and gain mastery over it. "Those are quite the herculean goals don't try to do too much at once or you might lose yourself halfway". Pausing to think on Fenriz's words and how best to go about how to not discourage or encourage him too much. "Don't practise for my sake practice for your own. Think of why you wanted to study magic and focus on achieving your own goals. Then one day you can show not only your mastery but what it has accomplished for you and others'“.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Sun Mar 1, 2020 3:56 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Naturally it seemed a daunting task to change the reputation of vampires everywhere, especially for someone as young as him. But to have Lixue's endorsement gave him more confidence than she might ever know.

Attempting to help others was actually something Fenriz was very accustomed to. Successfully doing so however was an entirely different story. But in both his successful and unsuccessful attempts he hadn't really considered using his abilities to assist others. In fact, ever since he had gained even a semblance of control over his shadowmancy his uses of his talents had been what one might have expected of a child with his abilities. As he had already demonstrated he didn't share the same qualms as Lixue about using his powers for more… frivolous means. 

This mentality had lead him to the scolding that he was receiving now. It was his turn to divert his gaze as she lectured him. Though he certainly had to admit she was far from wrong. Despite all the improvement that Fenriz had made, this skirmish had proven that he still had a long way to go in terms of control, and his still unresponsive legs proved that he still had a long way to go in terms of endurance as well.

"Fiiiine. You're right" he groaned, dejected. When he set his mind to something Fenriz could be an extremely stubborn child, as she had no doubt seen already during their time together. But this was something she seemed adamant about, and even Fenriz had to acknowledge that she had good reason to be so. For now he would have to settle on their original terms, though that was at least something that he could be grateful for. Even if he was willing to concede to not being shown any more magic, he wasn't going to abide by people he liked putting themselves down, even if that person was themselves.

He glanced up at her curiously as she approached him, and before he knew it he was being lifted into the air, the cold, hard ground being replaced by slightly warmer arms. Other than with his sister, physical contact with others was rare for the child, and the particular closeness of this situation caused his face to turn slightly red. Still, given that his legs still refused to work he was appreciative of not having to sit on the cold ground any longer. She explained that this was no longer her job, and once more apologized for her actions, despite the fact he already told her that in his mind, she had nothing to apologize for. So naturally when she offered to supply him with some of her own blood, his first inclination was to decline. But a quick look around the city reminded him that the entire place was deserted. Even if his legs started working again, it was likely going to be a while before he could find others.

Thinking back to her words earlier, about the vampires that occasionally refused to feed, he clamped his eyes shut and bit into her neck. As he had been trained, he sunk his fangs just deep enough to puncture, and took just enough blood to stave off the feral voice in his head pleading for him to drink until there was nothing more. Almost immediately he could feel his headache subside.

"T-thanks, Miss Lixue. Though, you didn't have to" he insisted, still convinced that she had done nothing wrong. Once he could feel the strength in his legs again, he let himself down from her arms, almost slipping on the ice in the process, though managing to retain his balance. He would carefully turn back to face her before speaking once more

"I know people are scared of Undead, just like vampires, but if you ever want to talk about your family again, you can talk to me" feeling somewhat rejuvenated, he was back to his animated, rapid paced self as he spoke "I would love to hear about them. Especially your sister. If you think so highly of her than she must have done some really amazing things. I-if thats okay, that is" he ended, remembering that might be a somewhat touchy subject

He spun away from her now, eyes scanning the moonlit horizon around him. Where his adventures would take him next, he wasn't certain, although what he was going to try and do, was a bit clearer. "Miss Lixue, I have one more promise I wanna make"I promise I'm gonna practice my magic a lot, and I'm gonna get full control over it. When it happens, can I show you how good I've gotten?"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Sat Feb 29, 2020 5:26 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Unbelievable even after everything I've done Fenriz is more concerned about my hand than himself. "It's nothing to concern yourself with i'm…" Witnesses Fenriz fall to his knees, then his side as his body had given out on him no doubt due to overexerting himself in their standoff. Unsure whether or not to pick Fenriz up as the boy seemed surprisingly content for someone who was laying on the freezing ground. Unsure what to do as she could not face the boy, after all, she had done, and there was no way that she could touch him as she had just threatened his life. Even if Fenriz said that she did nothing wrong it did nothing to quell her own shame for her actions.

Peeking out of the corner of her eye as she heard movement from Fenriz. He still seemed weak and unable to stand from her aggressive acts towards him. As he said how she was wrong the Priestess prepared herself for whatever Fenriz was about to say as she deserved it and much more. Though instead of lashing out of blaming her Fenriz refused to forgive her as she had done nothing wrong as it was her job. That may have been an excuse when I was alive, but I am no longer a priestess and even then. Turning her glance further away from Fenriz as his words only brought her more shame.

Thinking on her clan and how they truly operated. It was nothing like a priesthood as her clan was more concerned about its own reputation and profits than actually helping those truly in need. Even if it meant receiving punishment or even death performing her duties under her family's name proved that she was not a good person as anyone who can be swayed by fear does not deserve to be called a good person. As she thought about her past actions, Fenriz reaffirmed not only his goal but Lixue's as well. Letting out a small chuckle as Fenriz stated that he did not know how to show others that he was not a monster even though the boy had just done so. "You already have. You've shown that you are willing to put the lives of others before yourself even going so far to place your own life in the hands of a complete stranger if it meant that you could no longer threaten the lives of others. If you can convince me you can convince just about anyone". While still ashamed of her actions she turned to face Fenriz with a smile as while naive his personality and character were rarer than Lacriamium.

"Start out small, simply helping others is a good step. For me personally, I use my new talents to help instead of harm". Lixue could only offer suggestions as everyone had to find their own way, but the Undead believed wholeheartedly that Fenriz would do his very best to correct his wrongs. As Fenriz bought up a promise for her to keep her smile faded as she waited for the promise as she did not know if she could as Fenriz seemed very serious about his request. As he spoke she thought of others as Fenriz was not the first person to tell her to be less critical of herself. With the mention of how her sister would react Lixue's expression soured as the boy was right. " Very well it's a promise then I'll not speak of myself poorly and you'll do your best to be seen for the person you are and not what you are". While she herself did not think of herself as favourably as everyone else, her thoughts were still her own the Undead would just not have to voice her true feelings.

Thinking of something else Fenriz's smile returned to him as he asked for Lixue to show him more 'cool' magic. "That is a promise I will not keep, magic is not for entertainment it is a tool used for a select purpose. As I tell my student focus on the basics and build a strong foundation then branch out to more advanced practices". Letting out a airless sigh as all children and new mages were the same wanting to reach the end without even starting. " Magic is dangerous, not just not a moment ago you let your emotions take over and now you can barely sit if we truly fought no doubt you'd die from exhaustion before the fight had truly started". Completely forgetting that she was the one that caused him to do such a thing Lixue stern chastised the vampire on being more careful.

Renlenting as Fenriz rubbed his arm as she had no right to scold the boy after what she had done. Softening her expression as the fault lied with her, not Fenriz. "I apologize it was my fault for placing you in such a dire situation". Apologizing for her actions, but confused as the boy mentioned something completely different. "You don't have to apologize you did not know. Even so, it was nice to talk about them as I don't get to talk about myself very often as Undead are feared throughout the world”.

Trailing off into another sentence as the boy thanked her for not doing her job. Shaking her head as she closed in on the vampire and scooped him up cradling him in her arms. "It's not my job anymore and even then we only acted when we were requested to by either the state or benefactors’”. Holding back as the Former Priestess was about to flagellate herself once more, but held back as to keep her promise. "I only act now as we should have back then, not picking and choosing who to help based on personal gain". Looking to Fenriz as she held him in her arms. "I'm sorry to have done this to you, and I can't very well leave you in such a state… So if you are able I am willing to offer my blood as payment for my actions". Looking away as she loosened her cheongsam as she held Fenriz in one hand while holding up her cheongsam with the other just covering her chest exposing her neck and her gaes pact that peaked just over her chest. "Wh..whenever you are ready.. go ahead". Even if Fenris was a child she had never exposed herself to anyone let alone someone of the opposite sex.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Sat Feb 29, 2020 6:20 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

By the end of it Fenriz had fallen into a silence. Whether his words had gotten to her or not was irrelevant as by this point trying to keep both the shades and his inner vampire at bay were taking up the entirety of his concentration. For a moment, he was pretty convinced that this was where it all ended. Mentally saying a goodbye to his parents and sister he squeezed his eyes shut, preparing for the worst.

But the moment never came. Instead the brilliant light that he was trying to shield his eyes from only moments ago faded away Daring to open his eyes revealed that same hand that threatened to snuff out his existence only moments ago was now covered in smoke and burns. Without the spell being pointed at his face, the violent demon ravaging in his head finally fell silent, leaving nothing behind but a dizzying headache. When the hand that charged it fell, the shadows saw this as proof enough that Fenriz was no longer in danger, returning to their original form and placement.

Make their lives mean something… He had never really thought about it that way. This entire time he had been carrying that weight of regret, figuring that the constant nightmares about that night were his punishment for his actions, and that living with them was the only way to atone. Was there however something more that he could do? It was something to think on, but in the immediate moment he had something slightly more pressing on his mind.

"M-miss Lixue, is your hand going to be okay? We should probably find a healer for you. I can see if-"

As he spoke Fenriz attempted to step toward her, but between his spinning head and shaky legs, the step wasn't to be. He fell to his knees before falling over to his side, landing roughly on his left arm before rolling onto his back.

"Oww… he groaned. Fen lingered for a moment on the ground, the icy cold feeling surprisingly surprisingly nice on his still throbbing head.The short reprieve also provided him with an opportunity to gather his thoughts. Fen pulled himself up to a seated position, though the feeling in his legs told him that for a moment at least, attempting to stand was to be a fruitless endeavor.

"You are wrong about one thing, Miss Lixue. You do deserve forgiveness, but I can't forgive because you don't have a reason to apologize to me. I've never heard of an exorcist before today but hunting things like me is your job right? It wouldn't really be fair for me to be upset because you were doing your job" as Fen spoke his speech was noticeably slower, a far cry from the normally rapid pace at which he normally spoke, though his tone remained as friendly as it always was "But I really do mean what I said earlier. I don't really know how yet, but I want to show people that not all of us vampires are monsters"

There was a time that not even he believed that. A time where he believed that all vampires were terrible, horrible creatures, himself included. But through the few people he called friends, his perception had since shifted greatly. Second only to reuniting with his parents, Fen's dream had become to improve the perception of people like him.

"I'm not sure what way I can make the lives of that family mean something. But I promise I will find a way, and whatever that is I promise I will do it. But if I promise you something, you have to promise me something, too" his facial expression shifted, doing his best to put on that adult "serious face" he had seen many times in his life "You have to promise me that you'll try to stop calling yourself bad things. I don't think you're a terrible person, and I bet everyone I know would agree with me. Your sister sounds really cool. I wish I could've gotten a chance to meet her, too. But if I talked about myself the way you do around my sister, she would be very upset with me. If your sister was anything like mine, I don't think she would be too happy with you either"

This was something he knew from experience. She was a big reason why he had any shred of self confidence to this day

"Oh" his lips curling into a childish smile. "You also have to promise to show me more cool magic, sometime!"

Fenriz rubbed his arm. It was tender for sure but he had certainly suffered worse. More than anything it was his head that was bothering him. Still he soldiered on, as there was one more thing he had to get off his chest.

"Oh, and Miss Lixue, I'm sorry about asking all those questions about your family. If I had know they were…" he trailed off, not exactly wanting to finish that sentence "And I know it's your job, but thanks for not…"

He didn't want to finish that one either.

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Fri Feb 28, 2020 4:34 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Feeling a dark tendril encroach on her, Lixue expelled light out from her outstretched arm eradicated the tendril that dared to even attempt at threatening her leaving minor burns across her arm. Shooting her glance up to Fenriz after his poor attempt to stop her. Glaring at the boy as her arm began to heal in front of the boy's very eyes. "Are you insane!? I'm telling you to go and you try to attack me do you have a death wish"!? Further thought and examining into Fenriz's actions showed Lixue that his actions were out of fear and lack of control as the boy's fight or flight response began to kick in. However, even if Fenriz's actions were out of fear, Lixue shame in herself would only give the boy one chance before she would expel him from the mortal plane.

Even if Fenriz's protests to her and his own, magic shadows of animals formed around him ready to strike pointlessly at the Undead as Lixue was now a perfect counter to any creature from the dark. "You ask me to stop, yet you ready your own magic!? Even if I am aware that your emotions are at the heart of it, I will not hesitate if you become my enemy! So please, Fenriz just go". Pleading at the tail end of her words as she truly did not wish to harm Fenriz. At her wits end as she had nothing more to do or say other than attacking him in hopes that he'll leave.

Focusing entirely on Fenriz as he tried to block the light from his eyes. Though she hoped that he would run, her hopes were dashed as he continued to speak. I've never had a target refuse to run before and now he's trying to appeal to me instead of attacking or running. Truly the roles had been reversed as Fenriz seemed to be the adult and Lixue the child as he did his best to show her was not a threat. However, as he mentioned how he lost control and killed a family Lixue's mind raced with the immediate action to punish Fenriz for his wrongdoings. Despite the fact that she stood before a vampire and a murder, she held back something she would have never done in the past. Lixue understood how difficult it was to suppress the hunger even she had to place a pact on herself as a last resort. The fact that he had the bravery, no character to speak the truth before her and wished to show that he was not like other undead connected with the very core of the Priestess' being as she to wished for the very same. Remaining silent as the Vampire cried. She did not know that vampires could even cry, but the proof was before her very eyes. It was no tricky as both his mind and body were reaching their limits as both his magic and Lixue's presiding over his judgment eat away at him.

Keeping an eye on the shadow bestiary that stood at Fenriz's side ready to strike. It was impressive that he was able to amass such a large amount even with the circle assisting him. While emotions were an effective source for magic their erratic natural made using it dangerous as you could easily lose control and seriously harm others and more importantly yourself.

Listening to his ending argument Fenriz made the Undead even more ashamed of herself as even with everything she did and may still do he wished no ill will or harm to her. The boy even went on to say that she was a good person knocking the metaphorical wind out of Lixue as she could not agree to such a claim after all she had done to him and others. With the mention of her Sister, Lixue did not know what she would think of her. It was their very existence was to remove the unnatural and threats from the world. Huling would do her duty even if it was her. Finding it harder and harder to face Fenriz as he did nothing, but complement and smile as he believed in her a complete stranger, even willing to give her his life to atone for his crimes.

Remaining silent as she thought over everything he had said and done. Seeing herself in the boy as just like her he wished to live his life honourably even with what they are. In the face of death, he stood firmly and recounted his errors and wished to repent going as far as to ease he would be executor's worries and faced his death with a smile. With her spell still at the ready and Fenriz's shadow creatures inching closer ready to pounce as the awaited a possible storm to overtake the calm. Seconds felt like hours as Lixue finally came to a decision. Dispersing the spell to smoke rose from the Priestess's hand as burns covered her palm. Lowing her hand while still looking away from Fenriz. "It is I who am the terrible person for doing such a thing to someone who has shown me nothing but kindness. I will not ask for forgiveness as I do not deserve it. Even though I have no right to ask anything of you, promise me that instead of living in regret of the lives you have taken do something to make their lives mean something".

Author: drbuck, Posted: Fri Feb 28, 2020 6:45 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

"Oh I didn't mention her because I know where she is. Or at least, I know she isn't too far" he explained. Of course in that moment, he didn't realize why mentioning he had family nearby might not be within his or her best interest.

Although Fenriz had been completely obvious to the inner turmoil that she had been going through in regards to him, the pain on her face now was plain as day. In fact the whole mood inside the dilapidated city had seemed to change. Even the shadows seemed to notice, swaying anxiously in anticipation of the events that were about to unfold. Fenriz himself remained unusually silent as she explained herself, explained that she had been copying her beloved sister this entire time. Naturally he disagreed with her assessment. Though he didn't deny that Huiling sounded fantastic, he knew that his high opinion of Lixue had been formed by Lixue herself.

Once she explained what it was that exorcists did, specifically what their primary targets were, was the moment that the boy realized he was in trouble. This person, who he had previously believed was another person willing to entertain his childish whims, had been silently judging him the entire time. If he had said something different in this entire conversation, maybe elaborated a bit too much on one story, was it possible that he wouldn't be standing here now?

Still, he certainly wasn't out of the woods yet. Far from it in fact. Fen took a half step back as she lifted a hand his direction. A light began to form in her palm, causing Fenriz to raise a hand in blocking it out. He had seen a lot of magic in his time, even once or twice being threatened by it much like he was now. But there was something different about this spell. He could feel it, the inner vampire lashing out in his subconscious, clawing at his mind desperate to snuff out that light by any means possible. For now, however, the child remained in control, and he had a decision to make. She was giving him a chance to flee, a chance he was strongly considering taking. What stopped him was fear. Fear that as he was attempting to run, she would change her mind and decide to finish the job. He had seen what sort of power she was capable of. While he was absolutely no match for her in a fight, he wasn't certain he would be able to get away, either.

Fenriz staring down a deadly spell was confirmation enough to the shadows that Lixue was a threat. Without command from the vampire, the very shadow he cast on the still icy ground beneath them had formed into long, inky tendrils that attempted to wrap themselves around the arm that threatened him, no doubt in an attempt to direct the spell elsewhere.

"Wait, stop!" He protested. Even if the shadows were convinced she was a threat, Fenriz was not. But the more the shadows acted on their own, the more likely she was to be convinced that he was a threat. While he was focused on trying to get his shadow to obey his command, the surrounding ones began to come alive as well. Most of them had morphed into various birds, an animal that Fenriz was obviously very fond of. Others took the form of wolves, modeled after one in particular Fenriz had gotten to know. A handful of these animals had manifested, nowhere near the amount that he was capable of summoning while the circle was active, but all of them acting without input from Fenriz himself. They approached slowly, perhaps sensing the boys hesitation, but it was clear that they were set to try and protect him by any means.

Fenriz figured there was only one way to solve this situation. Convince the shadows that Lixue was not a threat.

"Miss Lixue I know you hate vampires. I know there's good reason to hate them." as he spoke his words were strained. With one hand still doing its best to block out the light from the spell, and another raised toward Lixue, he was still mentally trying to prevent the tendrils from latching on to Lixue, a task he was failing at. All the while, his inner, feral self was still trying its hardest to break free, wanting noting more than to violently crush that light "After I first became a vampire, I lost control once. An entire family died because of me. But I've learned other ways since then. I know how to feed without killing anyone, and I haven't since"

Tears were now beginning to form in his crimson eyes, due both to the situation at hand and the painful memory he had brought up. It was maybe a risky prospect, giving a person that wanted to kill him even more reason to do so. But that day, that image of the family lying mangled and bloody at his feet still haunted him. It was a grief that he would live with forever. A part of him even felt like maybe he deserved to die for what he had done. But at very least if this was where he was to meet his end, the one that would do it should at least have a tangible reason

"You said it yourself, actions and a desire to do better is the only way to improve. I don't want to be like the vampires that give us a bad reputation. I want to prove that we're not all like that"

The entire situation was almost becoming too much for the boy to bare, his legs beginning to shake. The zoo he had inadvertently summoned inched ever closer as he continued on "You have cursed mana too, right? Even if you're not a vampire like me, that gives us something in common. I wouldn't want you dead because of what you are, because I know you're a good person. And I didn't know your sister, but based on what you told me, I think she would feel the same way"

"But, if… if you think I'm a bad person, I understand. I would believe someone as smart as you would make the right call"

Despite the circumstances, the vampire managed a small grin. He had decided that Lixue was an amazing person. Not even Lixue herself was going to sway that opinion.

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Fri Feb 28, 2020 12:42 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

While continuing to speak she would stop to answer or respond to the boy's interruptions. "Five or more was fairly normal back then, I'm not sure if it still is though, also why did you not mention your sister early"? Unsure to why Fenriz had forgotten to mention his sister up until then, but perhaps the two were not on good terms as just like royalty vampiric clans are highly competitive.

As Fenriz commented on her sister the Undead felt a swell of pride in her sister as Fenriz understood the greatness of her older sister even if it was only through spoken word. Though the finish to his comment left a knot in her gut as his flattery was misguided as the Priestess was still thinking about whether or not to let him live. Looking to Fenriz with a shameful glance. "You only say that because I've been mirroring my sister's mannerisms. I'm nothing like her. She always knew what to do and never regretted anything". If only she was here now she would know what to do. Why was I the one to be brought back instead of her as she would have been the better choice?

Remaining silent as Fenriz barraged her with question after question about what her siblings. The answer was very simple as all of them were most likely dead just as she was, though Lixue hoped that at least Fan lived out his life becoming a famous general. Though she knew that her foolish hot head of a brother would go on a warpath upon hearing about his family's death no doubt getting himself killed. Looking down at the ground as Fenriz continued before giving the child the truth. "Their dead, just like I expect I don't have the decency to stay that way".

Pausing as no doubt Fenriz felt terrible about his questions, but not as terrible as Lixue was about to feel. "We, I hunt things like you and I. The only reason I've been speaking to you as I've been trying to determine if you are like myself. This is why I'm telling you that I am nothing like my sister as she would know exactly what to do without doubting herself. She would send you on your way without you even knowing that she had the intention of harming you".

Holding her hand towards the boy as light pulsed out from it. "Just go, find your family, I hope that they are as kind and respectful of life as you and I. Don't make me regret my actions anymore than I already do". Nothing has changed even now she was still a slave to her training, still willing to raise a hand and harm children on something they have no control over. Biting her lip as the light began to burn away at her palm, "Just get out of here do you want me to kill you"?!

Author: drbuck, Posted: Thu Feb 27, 2020 11:42 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

"Well, you guys both know a lot, too. I bet you guys would have a lot you could talk about!" Truth was Fenriz just assumed that anyone he liked, there was certainly no reason his parents wouldn't as well. Of course, he had never been presented a chance to test this theory as when he and his parents were together, they made up the bulk of his interactions with other people. But typically anyone who was willing to entertain his childish musings was a worthwhile person in his book, and Lixue had already entertained quite a bit, perhaps far more than she ever intended. A pout fell over his face, however when she lectured him about the responsibilities of using magic the way she had previously. His disappointment stemming not from being lectured, however, but the realization that he probably wasn't going to see more of Lixue's talents.

After agreeing to speak on her family she launched into a lengthy story about her past. Compared to their previous conversations, it was almost as if he was talking to a completely different person, the way she fondly reminisced. While it might have been a bit much for others his age to take in, Fenriz absorbed every word. Even in his head he was having trouble pronouncing some of her siblings names, although Fan reminded him of his own, or at least his nickname. Based on the way she described him however, that seemed to be the most they had in common. Da and Xiao, on the other hand… if they had similar features to him, he of course could only wonder if they were like him in other ways. There was certainly a lot he wanted to comment on as she spoke, but whether it was due to an uncharacteristic patience or a complete enrapturing of his attention he held off until she had finished. 

"Wow Miss Lixue your family is huge!" he remarked. Five siblings in total, although she mentioned they got separated from even more. Most curious to him however is the lack of mention about a mother or father, but that was one of the many things he planned to ask about. "Way bigger than my family. I just have the two parents, and I guess now a sister too"

Perhaps the strangest combination for siblings, a vampire and an angel. But despite their differences, and despite the fact that they didn't share a drop of blood, there were few people who meant more to him than Raziel, looking up to her much in the same way Lixue looked up to Huiling. She had discussed at great length her family, mentioning a wide variety of people, but he could tell that she held a higher affinity for Huiling than the others.

"Your sister sounds really amazing, but do you really want to be just like her?" he asked "I don't really know her but I think the sister that I met is pretty amazing, too!"

In the grand scheme of things these words probably meant very little considering they had just met, but the proud smile on Fenriz's face suggested that in his mind, his judgement on Lixue was the definitive one, and it was going to take quite a bit to change his mind.

"If I remember right…" Fen briefly mumbled to himself, using his fingers to count something in his head before he resumed his thought "You're the youngest of your brothers and sisters, right? Well, youngest of the ones you weren't separated from? I don't have as many as you do, but I'm younger than my sister, too. It must have been nice, having that many people to look out for you"

Though the quantity was different, and the very nature of their relationships were different, being the youngest was another thing they had in common. Even if one didn't count his adoptive sister, Fenriz was still the youngest of two, though he of course didn't know that.

"Why were you guys separated, anyway? For that matter, where are the ones you do know?" he looked around as if they were hiding somewhere nearby. Upon finding nothing in his cursory sweep of the area, he continued his flood of questions, only slowing down long enough to try and pronounce names as correctly as he could "Are Da and Xiao not here because they got married? How come nobody wanted to marry you?"

Although one would certainly be forgiven for taking that question as a bit mean spirited, Fenriz certainly didn't mean it in such a fashion. No, it was an earnest question from someone who's knowledge on relationships was limited, to say the very least. "I guess Fan's not here because he's doing military stuff, huh? I've seen soldiers before. They're the guys that protect everyone else, right?"

Taking one more pause, another thought seemed to form in his head "But you said exorcists fight threats too, right? Does that make you and your sister soldiers? What kind of threats did you fight?"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Wed Feb 26, 2020 4:55 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Unsure of what she had expected, but the Undead should have seen such a mundane response from Fenriz. Just like herself her parents only told her what he needed to know. Since they move around they are not entrenched within one location, though perhaps they move around a lot as a job requirement, maybe merchants. It would make sense as a merchant can move easily through borders and receive less scrutiny from the guard. While she was curious as to what the same stuff was she doubted that it was anything other than a normal reaction between. With the mention of a plan, Lixue did not think much of it as there was no point in questioning Fenriz further about as vampires are always scheming.

With a break in the answer, Lixue was still curious about many things but held onto her question as the boy seemed to be trying his best to think of anything noteworthy. Still a bit concerned about Fenriz and his family, but she did not believe that he or his family were a threat to others as who else would have brought up such a kind vampire. Caught off guard by Fenriz's mention of how his family and her would get along as she doubted she would get along with any such beings. "Why would you say that is it because of our use of magic"? Unsure as to why the boy would say that as just because they are all mages does not mean they would get along.

Gesturing to Lixue's magic as he marvelled over the frozen over landscape. " It would be careless to do such magic around others. The only reason I used such destructive spells was for training under the impression that no one else was around". As she explained a reason for his parent's not showing such magic, Fenriz turned around and approached her. Holding back her natural reaction to a possible enemy attempt to close the distance as Fenriz was a boy cursed with vampirism, not a vampire who had the appearance of a child. As they exchanged eye contact Fenriz stated that she was the only one to ask about his family. Finding such a claim to be quite odd as that would be a fairly normal route for a conversation to take if someone saw a child alone, it spoke more about the company he kept than Lixue. As the conversation focused on Lixue's family the Undead's expression darkened as it still hurt to think about. Unsure if she should share her time with her family as she was bred to hunt the very things they are. While her training and teachings were more in lines of torture and indoctrination she was better off than others who had no home or a family. Attempting to hold a smile as she thought about her past, "I suppose that is only fair".

Thinking about the best way to go about her life as she did not want to worry or scare the boy away before she understood him and his family more. " I was born in Karith to the Cao Clan, a very distinguished clan that specialized in priests and priestesses. Every member of the family is required to learn to become a priest and what priest you will become depends on your magical affinity. Due to my affinity towards the light, I was ordained to become an exorcist, disposing of anything that was a threat to the citizens. Aside from myself, there were my three older sisters Da, Xiao, Huiling and my brother Fan. There were other siblings, but the five of us were separated from them". Unsure as to the why they were separated though she did remember seeing her other siblings once, though they looked more like her parents than herself and her other siblings. "Da and Xiao were my twin older sisters. They also had an affinity to light magic, but they were rather sickly, as such they only did healing or rituals. Unlike me, they had ivory hair and ruby eyes kind of like yourself and very pretty, they had many suitors lining up to marry them unlike me". Fading away momentarily on how they always teased her about how she fought monsters and how unladylike she was. Even though it bothered her she knew that they were only joking as all of them supported each other when it mattered. Snapping back into reality and looking back to Fenriz to make sure he was still listening. " My older brother Fan was as fiery as his hair and magic, he always wanted to challenge Huiling myself as he wanted to be an exorcist instead of a war mage. Though he left to join the military once his training was done". Honestly, she was surprised that he could control his magic as he had quite the temper, no doubt he received the most punishment out of any of us as he had a strong spirit. "Last was certainly not least was my eldest sister Huiling, was an exorcist just like me and her ice magic was so clear and beautiful like her. Even though we shared similar appearances I was nothing compared to my sister. She was kind and always helped me I always… no still want to be just like her ''! Losing herself into her respect and awe of her role model, Lixue lost sight of Fenriz as Huiling seemed to be more like a goddess than an actual person as she could do no wrong in Lixue's eyes.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Wed Feb 26, 2020 6:13 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Whether she realized it or not, she gave the boy a lot to reflect upon.

"It's true many vampires do forgo their humanity and treat the living as mere cattle, often time growing more depraved as simple feeding is not enough"

Fenriz wasn't certain what she might be implying, what more a vampire might want. He was pretty certain however that he didn't want to know. Either way, this did not sound like him in the least bit, for which he was thankful.

"However, there are those who fight against the curse refusing to feed until their thirst overtakes them causing them to harm their friends and family"

This, however did. Granted, the first time wasn't a refusal but ignorance. But ever since the first time, ever since "the incident", it would be a lie to say he hadn't had a handful of close calls. It would also be a lie to say he hadn't lost control since that moment. And yet, despite this there had been moments previously he waited perhaps a bit longer than he should, trying to hold out until he didn't have to subject a friend or conscious participant through the ordeal.

The most devastating emotional punch came from explaining that his actions were still his own, whether or not he meant them. The violent aftermath of the first time was still seared into his memory. One of the few things that helped him cope with this was the insistence from those that knew the story that it wasn't his fault, and there was nothing he could do about it. This translated in his mind to him not needing to take responsibility for it. But maybe Lixue was right? He certainly desired to do better, that much was without question. But was he really doing enough? For now, he could only ponder.

A visible pout took over Fenriz's face when she revealed her fangs, or rather lack thereof. He was so certain that she was a vampire. But that of course raised the question, if she wasn't like him, if she wasn't a fellow vampire, than what exactly was she? He couldn't exactly tell, but he was certain the answer wasn't human. But more importantly, and perhaps more disappointing was the revelation that she had no idea who his parents were. Which meant, just like that, he was back to square one.

Listening attentively as she answered his questions revealed quite a few things, although  one could tell by the look on his face that he didn't quite understand all of what he was being told. But her knowledge and control over this mana as she called it seemed impressive. It also seemed like cheating. It seemed a little unfair that she was able to ascertain so much about him, given what little he knew about her. But more importantly it turned out he was cursed, or at least his mana was, although it seemed like this at least was something the two of them had in common. She referred to the both of them as undead, a phrase he had occasionally heard people use to describe vampires, but he much more associated the word with those who had quite literally returned from the dead, raising out of the ground much like they had back in the Plains on Canelux. Had Lixue died around here, and had just recently once more been given life?

Before he could ask the question, she asked one of her own. The why was pretty easy. He wanted to find his parents because he missed them. Because he wanted to share the stories of the time they had spent apart with them. He wanted them to see how much he had grown, and be proud of how much he had accomplished. The what, however, was something that he hadn't really given much thought to.

"Well, Miss Lixue" he began, placing a finger on his cheek while staring at the sky above as he tried to put thoughts into word, blissfully unaware of her intentions behind asking "I suppose once I do, we'll go back to doing the same stuff we used to do. We used to travel a lot. Mom and dad often told me that they had to meet with certain people, or do certain things, although they never really told me who or what they were. If I asked they just told me I was too young, or that I would know soon enough. I did hear my dad talking about some sort of plan once, but I didn't really hear many details. I think now that I'm a little bit older, and now that I've been on my own a bit they might tell me some more stuff"

Realizing he was getting slightly off topic, he placed a hand on his chin, trying to refocus his thoughts into an actual answer "I imagine once I find them, they'll want to go back to moving around again. They did seem pretty busy most of the time. But I wanna tell them all about the neat stuff I've done, and introduce them to all the cool people I've met. Maybe you'll get to meet them too, Miss Lixue. I bet you'd like them a lot. They knew a lot of magic too, although they didn't show me anything like this"

Fen turned around, gesturing to the vast field of ice that still surrounded them before once more facing Lixue Taking a step closer to her, he looked into her eyes, head tilted slightly to the side "You know Miss Lixue, you're the first person to ask me that. I had never really thought about it before, but I guess we have a lot of catching up to do once we do find each other. But you have to know what that's like, right? I've never met someone who doesn't have a family before. Can you tell me about your family? Were they also undead? I can tell you more stuff about mine, if you want"

A friendly smile graced Fen's face as he awaited a response. If the child had any inclination about Lixue's conflicted feelings for him, he certainly didn't show it. No, to him she was both a font of potential knowledge about the world around him, and a mystery he was determined to solve

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Tue Feb 25, 2020 7:53 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

"Apology accepted". While it was clear by his actions that Fenriz was just a child who had been recently turned, though it still did not mean that he was not a threat. However, the boy at least deserved a chance to explain himself as if Lixue could hold her hunger at by so to could Fenriz with the right direction. Keep her friendly demeanour as the boy broke eye contact as the guilt for his actions overtook him while explaining the reasoning for his actions. " It's true many vampires do forgo their humanity and treat the living as mere cattle, often time growing more depraved as simple feeding is not enough. However, there are those who fight against the curse refusing to feed until their thirst overtakes them causing them to harm their friends and family. I've also heard of vampires who prey on animals, One, in particular, feasted on rats which in a way helped reduce the spread of disease". Thinking back to that moment in time, she should have spared that one, but her teachings and fear of punishment guided her actions in her past life. Once she heard that Fenriz had lost himself to the thirst and more than likely killed, Lixue expression shifted just for a moment as she clenched her teeth. Her first reaction as always was to rid the world of the boy as he was just like rest a blight upon the world. However, the Former Priestess collected herself as she herself had lost herself to her hunger before and was in no place to judge Fenriz as he was only a child she could not expect someone so young to be able to fight forever as it is their nature to feed off life.

Seemly lost in thought over her past and about her many mistakes that were justified as righteous in the past as both of them lost themselves in their own thoughts. Even though her training and life had shaped her thoughts and actions, the actions were still her own. Even if she rid the world of true monsters, as Lixue had murdered innocent creatures under false pretences. Looking to the vampiric boy before her as she thought on what to do as perhaps her return to the world was a punishment with Fenriz acting as yet another chance at writing her wrongs. "Even if it was an accident it was still done by your own hand. You can feel remorseful, but that won't change what you have done. Only actions and a desire to do better is the only way to produce results".

Even with her forgiveness and words, Fenriz still looked away as if guilt still racked through his mind. I thought that would have helped, it always helps me when I feel as if I've erred. As Fenriz spoke up revealing his lie Lixue did not think much of it as she had already forgiven him for lying as she knew as the boy was even worse than her at lying. Mention the family name came up blank in the Undead's mind as she had no knowledge of the newer clans, but Fenriz's assumption that she was a vampire caused a short laugh to escape from her. Placing a hand over her mouth as she collected herself, "Sorry to disappoint you but I'm not a vampire". Opening her mouth and showing her teeth to show proof to Fenriz before continuing. "Now about your clan I've never heard of them as my knowledge of the present is limited, to say the least ''. For Fenriz it was probably for the best that Lixue did not know about his family as the Undead would no doubt wipe out his clan as she did not think most of such creatures especially ones that turn children.

Still not done with his questioning, Fen seemed concerned about Lixue's past comment about his mana. "I doubt you could find a healer that could treat an undead as light magic tends to not agree with us, but to answer the question yes in a way. Vampirism is a curse a very strong one at that, not something that can be cured through simple means". Keeping the cure to herself for now as she was unsure if he was looking for his clan to kill the one who cursed him or to live among them. Going back to the boy's first question as it was a bit more complicated. " The world is covered in magic and almost all beings hold magic, mana within them. It was one of the ways I could tell what your true nature was as I can see and feel your mana as, unlike a vampire who feeds of blood I feed off mana or what some would refer to as the soul. I can tell a lot about a person by their mana as the way a person lives actions and thoughts change their mana. It's how I could tell that you have not fallen to your baser needs".

As Fenriz's smile had returned, Lixue's smile had been replaced with a blank stare as the woman was judging him deiced on whether or not she could with good conscience let the boy go as if she did anyone harmed by him would be her fault as well. " Fenriz, why do you want to find your clan and what will you do when you find them"? Dispelling the circle beneath them as she no longer needed as the boy was no match for her with or without the circle, but if she had to kill the boy the circle would make the fight last slightly longer.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Tue Feb 25, 2020 6:31 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Her description of a lesser vampire sounded eerily familiar. Although every time he came back to his sense he never had any recollection of the events in question, from what he had been told the last time it had happened, it was almost exactly what it was like when he lost control, those brief moments when vampire managed to overtake child. Fen couldn't imagine what living in such a state permanently must be like. Despite his own feelings toward his vampiric half, he couldn't help but feel bad for these so called lesser vampires. It also served as a staunch reminder that he would have to seek out his next "meal" before long.

Nonetheless, this confirmed one thing. Lixue certainly had a lot of knowledge on the subject. The habits that she described matched his own to an uncomfortable degree. Still, he was determined to see what more she knew. Little did he know she was determined to get more out of him as well. Although he thought little of it in the moment, by the time her eyes met his, she had already knew more about him than he realized.

Complimenting his eyes caught him of guard, so he was not ready for the dread welling up in his stomach when she commented on his fangs he usually tried so hard to keep hidden. It would seem he had fallen prey to his on hubris. Showing off, and subsequently impressing himself with his own talents caused him to get careless. He had no idea what she meant by cursed mana, but it only added to the growing list of concerns. All signs pointed at the jig being up. Yet, despite having seemingly uncovered what he was, Lixue still wore a smile on her face. Noticing this, the tension slowly eased out of his body. If she did see Fenriz as a threat, she was doing an excellent job of hiding it. One thing, one phrase in particular however caught his interest the most.

Beings like ourselves. Maybe, just maybe, his suspicions about her were true, too.

"I'm sorry Miss Lixue, I shouldn't have tried to lie to you" He turned his head, no longer daring to look her in the eyes. His arms crossed behind his back, almost radiating the demeanor of a child being scolded "But it's just like you said. I've met a lot of people that don't like vampires. They say vampires do all kinds of horrible stuff, and a lot of people seem to hate me for it, even though I've never done any of that stuff! At least, not on purpose.."

He trailed off at the end, momentarily losing himself in his own thoughts before being snapped back to the situation at hand by a sudden realization. There was another lie he had to come clean on. Fen turned his head back toward Lixue, although guilt wouldn't allow him to look her in the eyes.

"I-I should tell you, I'm not really studying the ruins either. I'm actually looking for my parents. The Hallowthorns. You probably heard of them cuz you're a vampire too, right?" He asked. It would explain a lot, after all. Especially how she knew he too was a vampire, as every other one of his kind he had met before seemed to know. It was an ability that even he seemed to possess too, although in this instance he wasn't sure it was working properly. There was still something off, something different about her that didn't match up to the others he had met before. "Does that mean you have "cursed mana" too? What does that mean anyway? Are we sick? Should we find a healer? I know a healer, you know. I bet she could help us!"

The smile that had returned to his face was the same prideful one from before, although this time it was pride in someone else's abilities rather than his own. Even still, it was the same toothy grin that had exposed him in the first place.

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Mon Feb 24, 2020 6:14 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

"It's nice to meet you as well as Fenriz, you were close as it is two syllables". Slowly sound out the letters she would start off slow. "luh-ee-sh-wey, lee-shwey, li-xue, Lixue". Allowing Fenriz so time to adjust to attempt to pronounce her name, but not too overly worried about it as the boy did not appear to be from anywhere close to her home.

Listening to Fenriz stumbled around his lie was adorable. "Really? Skin like mine and strange eyes that does sound like the description of most vampires'". Playing the fool, for now, Lixue would listen to Fenriz's concerns about this nonexistent vampire. "It is true most monsters and beast tend to hunt at night, and in the case of vampires, they can only move freely at night in most cases. However, it is doubtful that this person is a vampire as most tend to stay nearby and hide among their food source. If it is a vampire it is most likely a lesser vampire. While still quite dangerous they are no more intelligent than a beast as they are driven only by their hunger though you would be able to tell if it were a lesser vampire as they are more monster than man". Putting her past knowledge as an Exorcist to use as she had dealt with vampires before. Like demons they can either be very weak or very strong, however, their cunning is far more of a danger.

As fun as it was to speak with the child, he was still a vampire. If he had met her in the past she would have killed him without even a thought, but living as a cursed being herself showed that with dedication and a strong will one can overcome their dark desires and retain their humanity. "Though your mother is quite right, it would be best to avoid such a being, however eye colour and skin pigmentation are not enough to go on". Looking into Fenriz's eyes with her dull grey eyes that seemly absorbed all light that reflected off of them. "Did they have beautiful crimson eyes like your own"? Slowly verbally backing the boy into a corner focusing the conversation on his true nature."Did they have sharp fangs like yourself?.. Or did their mana hold the touch of one cursed"? Still holding her small smile and calm demeanour as the Priestess should no ill will towards Fenriz as even though his mana held a curse it was pure and untainted showing that he has yet to succumb to his thirst. "It's not very polite to lie, but I can understand as I've withheld the truth as beings like ourselves are not thought highly of due to the actions of the majority".

Author: drbuck, Posted: Mon Feb 24, 2020 7:22 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Fenriz's lips curled into a bashful smile at the praise. Given what she had just done it felt like particularly high praise, at that. Although Fenriz enjoyed the compliment, he did have to point out one thing.

"I don't have a teacher at all, miss" as he spoke, he lifted a finger to the shadow bird, who changed perches on command. He brought it to his face and smiled, before sending it off. It dove back into the ground before morphing back into the shape of the lamp as it was before "I had to learn all of this on my own. At first a bunch of weird stuff started to happen on its own, just like that. But eventually I learned to control it!"

The tone in his voice was still mostly one of pride. In regard to his shadowmancy, he was very happy with how far he had come. But there was a detectable trace of sorrow in his words. Getting to even this level of control had taken a fair amount of work, and there were more than a fair share of… regrettable moments before he had gotten to where he was. Worse still, he couldn't claim to have complete control of his power. Although they certainly listened to any command that he gave them, the shadows still seemed to have their on whims and wishes. They still had a tendency to act of their own accord, and the end result wasn't always good for Fenriz.

A chilling hand was placed in his, leading him into the mysterious circle. Although nervous, not entirely convinced of its safety, he didn't resist. Closing his eyes as he crossed the threshold, he braced himself for some sort of deadly burst of magic, or horrible curse to fall over him. Yet, no disaster befell him, in fact quite the opposite. Standing inside the circle made him feel powerful, like he was capable taking on anything and everything. Even the unruly shadows that usually restlessly danced in his presence seemed to stiffen in respect to the temporary power Fenriz possessed.

Deciding to put the circle to the test himself, he surveyed the surrounding area, focusing on every shadow source he could find. Raising both hands, waived them about, as if conducting the shadows themselves as they all began to morph. Much like before, the shades transformed into the shape of birds, though this time there were many, about a dozen black, soundless birds of various size. Without a word, he instructed them to fly around the circle in which they were standing. The boy marveled at his own work, giggling childishly at the torrent of birds that cycled around them, before commanding them back to their homes. He then turned his attention back to the one who had allowed him this power, all the while grinning wider than he likely ever had before.

"You made this thing yourself? How did you do that? Do you think you can teach me how? What else can you do with it?" he asked, high expectation clear both in his expression and tone, seemingly forgetting that he was the one who had started showing off before she had ever been presented with the chance.

Though impressed with the circle, something struck him as odd about the experience. True to her word, it seemed at least while he was within this circle, he was capable of so much more than usual. Even what she said about cost was true. Normally a display like that would have left him feeling drained, so much closer to succumbing to that darker side of his, but despite it all he felt just fine. But it did raise some questions. Calling Fenriz's knowledge on magic limited would be generous, but even still he had never heard of it costing anyone anything to use it, save for himself. Extended use of his abilities caused him to crave blood at an accelerated rate. Surely she couldn't know anything about that, unless of course, his suspicions were true.
She introduced herself with a bow, a custom that Fenriz had only seen once or twice before. To the best of his ability, he attempted to mimic the action "It's nice to meet you Miss Li-Lixue"
Even her name was strange to him, stumbling in his attempt to even pronounce it. There was something, perhaps even a lot of somethings, different about the person he just met, and he was determined to find out.

Unfortunately, his first attempt to deduce these mysteries had not gone the way he wanted. Instead of answering his inquiry on vampires, she turned the question back around on him. Taken aback, he attempted to collect himself as he explained.

"Well… I think I saw one on my way here. He had these weird eyes, and really pale skin, almost like yours" stated Fenriz, so lost in crafting his lie that he forgot the he too possessed similar pigmentation "You said yourself there might be dangerous stuff lurking around here at night, right?  My mom always said vampires can only go out after dark. I was hoping you could tell me if that guy was one of them, so I can look out for him when I leave. Mom said vampires are the scariest things to come out at night, and I think we'd want to avoid that, right?"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Mon Feb 24, 2020 2:52 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Following the stranger's movements, as he fused into the shadows reforming himself by a nearby lamppost. Now that she had gotten a better glimpse at her interrupter it was safe to say that the boy was human, not a halfling. However, he had unusually pale skin along with equally usual eye and hair colour. While the Priestess did not want to make assumptions it was very likely that the boy that stood in front of her was no boy at all.

Listening to the boy stumble through his words as he attempted to answer her questions. Unsure whether the boy was recently turned or just a very good actor she waited for him to answer with a calm and inviting expression. "Is that so? you should be more careful of the time as who knows what lurks in the night around here". With how bad the boy was at lying it was clear that he had recently been turned for some sick sort of pleasure from a sire unaffiliated with any clan of note as turning children is frowned upon. Shifting to magic as he attempted to change the subject while showing his excitement about the subject. Lixue would have answered him, but the boy was going a mile a minute making it impossible to answer the questions one after another as she then gave an example of his own shadow manipulation in a very playful and childlike manner. Though it may seem to be simple child's play, the boy had great control and formation for someone so young. As he looked to her with a proud smile she applauded his performance, "You have impressive control for someone so young, you must have had a good teacher".

Introducing himself as Fenriz he went to outstretch his hand but stopped just shy of her magic circle. His concern about fears about the circle left a smile on the Undead's face as the boy was no monster. Taking hold of his hand Lixue guided him into the circle letting him feel the coldness of her touch. "Thank you for your concern Fenriz, but this is of my own make". Letting go of his hand the circle bolstered his magical power. "It's something I developed for tough fights. It not only enhances magic but reduces the cost as well". As he basked in the benefits of the circle, Lixue bowed slightly "Since you shared your name the least I can do is share mine. I am Cao Lixue though Lixue is fine".

After she introduced herself Fenriz asked an interesting question. "Of course though why would a young man like yourself ask about something as dangerous as that"?

Author: drbuck, Posted: Mon Feb 24, 2020 1:21 AM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

As soon as he was given the go ahead, he made his way his way down from his perch, molding in and out of the shadows, almost as if teleporting between them. Although he was capable of climbing down naturally, whether he chose this method because it was easier or because he wanted to show off was anyone's guess, Fenriz's included. Lastly he appeared on the ground near this icy mage, stepping out of one of the shadows cast by the road lamps. Fen allowed himself to move just close enough so that he could notice a bizarre circle at this person's feet, although he made sure to keep outside of it.

"Well I…" he stammered, attempting to figure out how he was going to answer her question. The truth was, of course, late hours were the only time he could be out. But someone of that power, if they turned out to hate his kind, there would be little he could do to defend himself. Playing it safe seemed to be the best bet for now. Unfortunately, having not really expected to run into anyone else here he hadn't exactly prepped an excuse beforehand.

"You could say that. I'm actually here looking for something and stayed out a bit later than I meant to" he explained with a nervous chuckle. It was a half truth, as he was searching, although searching for someone rather than something. But even in these lands that he had never been to, he didn't dare mention who. For now, he would have to hope this explanation would suffice. 

"But what was that? That thing with the snow and ice! How did you do that?" he asked. It was partially an attempt to abruptly change the subject, but also more so what he really wanted to talk about. Even after his own abilities had begun to manifest, he couldn't help but be mesmerized by people with any sort of magical inclinations. He marveled at the wintry landscape that surrounded them before turning back to the caster that had made it that way "Can you do any other cool stuff? I can do some magic too, wanna see?"

Without waiting for an answer to any of these questions, a small hand was raised, directing it at the lamp post he had step out of earlier. The shadow it cast began to twist and turn until it molded into the shape of a small bird. It hopped around beneath the ground, two dimensional as one would expect a shadow to be, before bursting out into the real world, taking on a third dimension in the process. The avian silhouette took flight, flying passed Fen's present company before circling around, peacefully landing atop his head. He giggled, allowing it to remain there before turning his attention back to the other guest of these ruins.

"Neat, huh?" he said, a proud smile splayed across his face. His powers weren't much right now, but for the time being they were enough for him.

"Oh, my name is Fenriz by the way. You can call me Fen, if you want" he went to extend his hand, but paused when he was reminded of the strange circle she stood in. "I-Is this thing safe? You're not trapped in there are you? Do you need me to go get help?"

As he awaited her response, he took this opportunity to examine his new friend. There was still something about her that was nagging at him in the back of his mind. The most striking thing about her was the pale skin. Certainly he had met pale people before, but there was only one type of person he had ever met that had a complexion like that one, and he was one of them. Perhaps rather than hating his kind, she was on of them. But unlike Fenriz, who's eyes were shimmering and brighter than your average person's, her's were dull and gray. It was very perplexing. Still, he couldn't help but help but feel there was a possibility. Whether he wanted it to be true or not, was of course a complicated matter, but it was a mystery that needed to be solved either way.

"Miss, have you ever heard of vampires?"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2020 11:08 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Still focusing evermore on her magic covering the entire city if it meant pushing her limits. The world had gotten more populated than she remembered leaving far fewer places to truly practise without worrying about causing harm to the living and their home. Here she could go all out without worrying about a thing as the worst that could happen was damage to an already destroyed empire.

Fatigue started to kick in as she forced more and more magic into her spell as she attempted to cover everything in her wake with an unrelenting cold. Feeling her cursed being gnawing at her mind as her hunger for magic grew the more she spent her own supply. Even if she ran herself ragged and unable to control herself there was no one around to worry about becoming the victim of her own baser desires, of course until a tiny voice echoed through the blind storm of white. Immediately cutting off the supply to the spell and dispelling the blizzard revealing a frozen waste of a city. Looking in the direction of where she heard the voice she saw a vague outline of a small person that could either be a child or a halfling by the size and voice. "My apologies, I did not think anyone was around! You can come down now it's safe". Unsure as to why someone other than herself would be here as she made sure to practice in the late hours just in case there were scholars studying the ruins.

As she waited for her current company to descend. Lixue would suppress her draining aura to make sure to not harm her current company. "If I may ask what is it that you are doing out here at such an hour? Are you studying these ruins"? While suspicious of the person they did not seem like an enemy as they announced their presence instead of using the element of surprise. Continue to stand in her magic circle and at the ready as she waited for her company to meet her.

Author: drbuck, Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2020 10:27 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Roads dimly lit by ghostly street lamps, surrounded by dilapidated buildings of a bygone era with little more than silence filling the air. An environment like this would be to most an unsettling one. Especially those of Fenriz's age. But bizarrely the ruins of this civilization now lost to time had transformed into a macabre playground of his.

The city seemed devoid of any living creatures, and even with Fenriz's presence this was, technically still true. Although he appeared just as any other child, Fen had long since had his mortality traded in, albeit not of his own will. But in turn, this is what made Kanuri a perfect for a vampire like him. No other people. Outside of a select few who meant the world to him, other people typically meant trouble. 

But without this trouble, he was free to traverse the ruins at his leisure. He marched through the city with a wide grin on his face, tightrope walking across crumbling structures and leaping over gaps in rubble. Any time he might stumble or perhaps something gave way beneath his feet, the shadows that had grown to become trusty friends of his, would rise up to catch him, safely delivering him back to the ground. It was a strange place to do so, but he had discovered a place that at very least briefly allowed him to recover the childhood he had stolen from him.

This was until seemingly out of nowhere a portion of the city seemed to freeze over, right in front of Fenriz's eyes. Although unnoticed by the boy, the shadows around him almost seemed to stiffen, as if they were as on edge as he now was. He managed to climb his way to a particularly tall structure, surveying the scene from above. The first thing he noticed was that the frozen over area was expanding. But more interestingly, at the source seemed to be another person. A part of him disappointed, seemingly no longer having the place to himself. But a larger part of him curious. He had witnessed several magical feats since he set out on his journey, but even still, this was a new one, and perhaps the most impressive. But there was something else intriguing about them. Some intangible curiosity that Fenriz couldn't quite describe. Even though other people often did mean trouble, the only thing that could override Fenriz's caution, was his curiosity. Although unsure how at the moment, he was determined to find a way closer.

Finding another similarly high up place, this one a bit closer to this stranger, Fenriz took a deep breath, the now chilled air filling his lungs, he shouted as loud as he could "Excuse me, is it safe to come down? I don't really mean to interrupt what you're doing, but I don't want to get frozen, either"

Author: Cao Lixue, Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2020 5:46 PM, Post Subject: One In The Same [P][R]

Even if it's people had disappeared their work had remained slowly, but stubbornly fading with time. While the ruins had seen better days the magic left behind remained as strong as ever. With its secluded location and abundance of magic, it was the perfect place for a magic leech like herself to train without worrying about harming others.

Finding a fairly open area that seemed to once be possible a town square by the designs and the surrounding buildings. Lixue outstretched her arms and squatted as she extended her legs one at a time she prepared a magic circle under her feet as she stood up with her legs together and her eyes closed as focused her mind and body. Expelling immense amounts of mana all around her body as she opened her eyes focused and prepared.

Sending spires of ice winding and interconnecting throughout the ruins to freeze the surrounding area. The Priestess went all out setting off explosions of frost covering the entire area in a mix of ice and snow. Feeling her hunger grip at her mind she paused to rest absorbing in all the magic in the surrounding area as mixing a dark draining arua with the white of snow as it fell all around her.

Even with the mass amount of high level magic used Lixue barely made a dent in her mana pool. With a clap, she outstretched her hands outward and forced a harsh storm of cold that covered the area in white freeze anything that had remained untouched near instantaneously. Forcing out more magic the storm would grow freezing the surrounding buildings as it passed over.

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