Dashed Expectations

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PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2014 9:02 am 
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Slowly, Widstor's eyes opened, his eyelids feeling as heavy as anvils. It was the first time he had gotten any rest for longer than he could remember--after all, it would be no understatement to say he hadn't rested since this world's inception.

Of course, there was good reason for that.

With a sudden start, Widstor leaped to his feet, looking around in a panic. Had it finally happened? Had he passed on to the afterlife?

Looking down into his hands, though, Widstor let out a sigh of relief, holding the heart he held--entrenched in blackness as it was--close to his chest. In some sort of poetic bit of irony, the heart which he had pumped so much of his own life force into had managed to keep himself alive for these precious few minutes he was unconscious.

"Good, you're finally awake." came a familiar voice as Widstor turned around, coming face to face with Cevell. "I have something to tell you. I presume you've filled my heart with life, as I've asked?" she went on to ask, holding out her organic hand.

With a bit of realization, Widstor nodded, smiling as he placed the heart into Cevell's hands. "Now I understand why you wanted this. It's nice to know that through that cold demeanor of yours, you're finally thinking of others. I suppose it is about time I get some res--"

As she took the black heart, Cevell ignored Widstor's words, paying no mind as she brought her shotgun-arm up, interrupting Widstor with one simple word:
"Goodbye."

As Cevell turned back around, staring out into the deserted island she now stood upon, she frowned. As nice as it was to finally get that out of the way, everything else wasn't exactly going as she hoped. She had no idea where Alicia was, the good Captain managed to be bested by someone other than herself, and now, Cevell was truly alone. It wasn't the first time, so she knew well that she'd be able to manage, but it never got any easier. Yes, this was just like last time--save one thing. Yes, there was one person that could make this worse--

"It's time at last, Ms. Toffel."

As Cevell turned around, she was greeted by that woman with her dumb pink hair, and her dumb pink clothes, and her dumb pink voice. Cevell could totally sense the very essence of pink in her voice, that was... that was definitely a thing... Also, her clothes are mostly white, looking at it, but... Look, Miyana was here, and Cevell was less than happy, alright?

"So now you see just why this world needs you, and you specifically. Best way to defeat a god of a world is to enlist something from another world, after all, and between your scientific expertise, and Widstor's unique magical properties, you two were quite the steal." Miyana went on explaining.

Her look of absolute distaste wearing off a bit, Cevell let out a snicker as Miyana finished her sentence. "Widstor too, huh? Well, might be a slight problem with that, I may have... gotten rid of him." Cevell coyly said, letting out another small laugh.

"Oh, no, I figured that would eventually. I'm surprised it didn't happen sooner, to be honest, but that's fine. I know fully well that that won't stop him." Miyana replied, letting out a light laugh of her own as she looked upwards, above and behind Cevell, "After all, you said it yourself: you simply have to want something badly enough, and it'll happen."

Her slight smile faltering, Cevell turned around once again, slightly confused. To say she wasn't prepared for what she saw would be... quite the understatement. As would saying that she saw Widstor, still alive. What she saw was not simply Widstor, it'd be a stretch to call it that at all, really: Widstor's body was there, to be sure, but coming out from where most the head was now missing was... a monstrosity, would be the only real word to describe it. "A massive, chaotic mass of black energy, swirling around in some formless mess, yet still somehow seeming to be staring directly at her" would be another good way to describe it. Before Cevell could even react, though, the mass reached out and grabbed her with an arm (?) and held her up close to its face (?).

"Want... you, want... need... want... Cevell... want... inside me..." the mass stuttered out, its voice a strange, hoarse-sounding noise that seemed to echo all around Cevell, who looked a bit disconcerted, but probably nowhere nearly as much as she should.

With yet another snicker, Cevell replied, "That's not how it works, Widman. Even in double-death, you're still as clueless as ever." Completely undeterred, however, the mass slowly opened its mouth (?), craning Cevell up over it. For as black as this thing was, its "mouth" was somehow an even darker, far more empty of a black abyss. Not wasting another moment, however, Cevell aimed her shotgun-arm directly at the mass' own "arm," blasting away. Immediately plunging downward, Cevell practically did the splits as she caught each foot on either side of the mass' "mouth," blasting her shotgun a second time, down into the mouth, using the force to help her spring off to the side (plus, anything resembling an opportunity to shoot Widstor in the mouth was never to be wasted).

"Well, that's cute and all," Cevell casually said towards Miyana as she brushed herself off, "but I do hope you don't plan on me working with him."

"I don't know," Miyana immediately replied with a smile, "all things happen because someone wanted it hard enough."

With that, as Cevell went to brush off what was left of the "arm" around her leg, it suddenly tightened its grip, quickly lifting Cevell back up into the air as it levitated back up towards the mass. "Want... Cevell..." the mass repeated.

Letting out something between a sigh and a small laugh, Miyana went on, "Of course... if enough people want something, it becomes a lot easier to overcome the want of one." And thus, on cue, the smell of death wafted over the area as a massive boat composed entirely of bone and flesh--its sails a black energy not unlike the mass'--drifted ashore, centered perfectly behind Miyana.

"We will be fakin--rake--track--taking that." a voice of a similar sort of feel to the mass', albeit more human, and just... more, as if coming from multiple people, to the point of stuttering over itself as it tried to find its words. Regardless, as this came, the boat began to morph, a particular skull coming forth from the center, along with a massive arm constructed of various parts that outstretched itself towards Cevell.

With a look of disgust, Cevell spit at the arm, commenting "Excuse me, but I don't belong to anyone, not to this ugly mug behind me, not to pinky, and especially not to whatever the Hell you are."

With that, the bone boat's arm faltered, its voice coming up once more, "Ah, you must forgo--forgery--forgive us, ma'am, we were not referring to you, but the... being behind you, currently holding your leg, we should hope that no offen--"

"Ahem." Miyana's voice came, now, clearing her throat quite blatantly, nudging her head towards the mass, which was taking the opportunity of the bone boat's politeness to reconnect with the arm holding Cevell, quickly flinging her into the air, arcing her in such a way so as to land in the mass' "mouth."

"Er, right." the bone boat spoke again, with a bit of embarrassment, its arm now outstretching once more towards the mass, quickly snatching up what remained of Widstor's body from its base, the mass' energy now rapidly swirling down and around the bone boat's arm, absorbing all of the mass just in time for Cevell to land safely in the bone boat's hand. Slowly lowering her back to the ground, the bone boat spoke once more, "We apologize for the illconceiv--inconspic--inconvenience, ma'am, we knew not--" With a start, though, the bone boat's grip tightened on Cevell, the skull that was at the front and center suddenly falling down, black energy rapidly leaking out from where it once was, as if it were some kind of plug. "Such... desire, we... I... want... Cev--"

BLAM, BLAM, BLAM, is what sounded out as Cevell wasted no time in blasting her shotgun right into the arm holding her, quickly detaching it from the bone boat as it fell limp to the ground.

"Ah, yes... we do apologize, ma'am--hnn... Cevell... I... no, we were not quite prepared, but you--Cevell--should be safe n...now. Yes." the voice spoke once more, the black energy that leaked out now draining back into the skull that fell as a second arm--this one just a simple, human-sized skeletal arm--reaching down and replacing the skull to its rightful place.

Cevell rolled her eyes, sighing as she spoke, "Yeah, yeah, sure. I was perfectly fine before you showed up. Just would've taken a few more shotgun blasts--perfect solution to any problem, and that dork was no exception."

"You can keep him under control, yes?" Miyana asked, chiming into the conversation.

"Yes, although we mean no offer--offense when we say that we hope this dark-haired woman--Cevell--does not plan on keeping our company, as his--my--our desire is quite strong.

"Oh, between your lovely smell and your beautiful body, how could I ever keep myself away?" Cevell remarked, her voice dripping with sarcasm--or maybe that was just the leftover bits of flesh she was brushing off of her from the arm.

"Right, yes. We certainly could be more preset--prehens--presentable." the bone boat spoke again, its body now shifting as it formed into a more humanoid shape, growing more dense to make itself smaller and forming into more of a mound, the particular skull now placed atop where one would expect the head to actually be, and the black energy now into a cape, or even cloak of sorts. "Regardless, we were under the impression we would be along--alert--alone on this island--at least, as alone as we can be--so we imagine you ladies will be off soon, yes?"

"Indeed." Miyana chimed in once again, "Soon. But first--that casket you're transporting. You have life energy to spare, now, so I'd like you to raise its contents."

"Erm..." the bone golem spoke, a bit unsure, "We apologize, but we can't do that. We promised we wouldn't, to a woman who proved both general--generatio--generous and trustworthy. To go back on our word would be completely represe--repris--reprehensible."

Miyana sighed, shaking her head as she responded, "That woman gave you nothing more than a promise of her own. Of supplies that you may not even need. I gave you a specific location, and the seed of life that will guarantee you're able to sustain. And how did she prove trustworthy? By saying your name? Is that really all it takes, Etheren?"

For a moment, the bone golem, Etheren, remained silent. Eventually, he spoke up again, "Your point is made. We would be willing to compris--compro--comply, but are you absolutely sure this is necessary? We would hate to go against such a kind soul's wishes if it can be helped."

"It may not be," Miyana admitted, "but when the army of the next world over come to destroy all we know, I feel like anything that has a chance of being necessary should be taken advantage of, wouldn't you agree? What you have in that coffin is nothing short of an abomination--something the Goddess of this world had no hand in creating, and that is what we need. That is no doubt the reason she was denied life, as well, which I'm sure is something you can relate to all too well, Etheren, and now, only you can change all of that."

Etheren paused in silence once again, finally replying with "We may not be fully aware of all the things you speak of, but your logar--lodg--logic is hard to argue with, our fair lady. It shall be done."

"Excellent. I shall leave you to your devices for the moment, as I have our clothing-hating friend to attend to." Miyana went on, now turning back towards Cevell. "Now then, are you ready to offer your services?"

Cevell stuck her tongue out in disgust at the thought, but nodded regardless. "I guess. Not like I have much choice." she grumbled.

"Don't be like that. Think about it like this: when you take over Hell, what good would it be if there was no world left for it to serve as an afterlife to? I can't imagine the Goddess would simply let Hell exist in whatever world she has in mind, after all." Miyana went on, walking up and patting Cevell on the back with her one arm.

Cevell grabbed Miyana's arm, slowly removing it from her back, but responded nonetheless, "Fair enough. Only appropriate that the future Devil take down the God of the world, after all." she said with a chuckle.

"That's the spirit." Miyana said with a smile, "Shall we get going, then?"

"Well... one more thing." Cevell went on, biting at her lip as she looked away, "You were clearly tracking me and such... and I was thinking, you'd probably know where the others on the ship ended up, and..."

Miyana raised an eyebrow, smirking slightly as she spoke, "You're not worried about the rest of the crew of the Prancing Devil, are you?"

"No!" Cevell quickly refuted, shaking her head, "I mean... I was just thinking, like, if any of them owed me something, or... one of them--"

Miyana chuckled slightly, interrupting, "You need not worry, I already have the devil girl back where we're going, ready to get working on finding that fountain you two need."

"G...good." Cevell said, gritting her teeth slightly. The fact Miyana knew exactly what she was talking about frustrated Cevell way more than she would've liked.

"Then we're off. I'll leave you there for a bit to catch up with the devil girl as I finish with the bag of bones here." Miyana said with a wave of her single hand, Cevell disappearing in a puff. Walking back towards Etheren, she spoke up once again, "So, Etheren, are you ready? I'm sure we both have business we'd like to hurry and get to."

"Hm... yes. Let us get this over with, for better or for worse." Etheren replied, holding out a hand over the casket he had prepared in the meantime. Slowly, black energy began dripping out of his fingertips--eventually working up to full-on flowing after a few moments, going directly through the lid of the coffin.

"Very good." Miyana said with a nod, walking up to the coffin, watching idly for a few moments as Etheren did his thing. After a few moments, she raised her arm, slowly lifting up the casket's lid as she peered inside.

"It's time for your second chance, dear. Are you ready?"

---------------------


"Yessss! I'm ready for my second chance at last!" Ghosty McGee shouted, triumphantly holding his fluff-filled arm to the sky. "... So, wait, how exactly does this work? Do I need to eat? Or poo? Or breathe? How am I even talking?" he went on to ask, his arm faltering as he pondered these questions. That didn't last long, however, as he now leaped up on to John's head, his arm now firmly back in the air as he shouted, "Whatever, we can worry about that later, this stage of our lives is coming to a close, and our journey's only just beginning! ON TO ADVENTURE!

... What exactly are we doing, again?"


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:54 pm 
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[Soon after the crew split.]

Hello? A voice echoed in the darkness.

Who's there? Alicia called back.

The voice replied, It's me, Gale.

Am I... am I dead? She wondered.

No. And neither am I. The voice told her.

Frantically, she asked, Whats going on? Where am I? What do you want?

I'm not quite sure how to explain but I have a message for you.

What is it? She said, worried.

You need to find-

The moment had been cut off by a loud, pink voice crying out, "There she is!" Light flooded her eyes as she squinted, adjusting to the change. She was lying on something wet. Blood? But she didn't feel like she was on the ground. She glanced to the side and saw an endless expanse of ocean. She glanced to her other side and saw what looked like a ship in the distance.

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He's back and slower than ever.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 6:19 pm 
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The Doctor

Edward Swanhaur watched this man walk over and scanned him carefully. His outfit seemed to be almost like a true homage to early sea fashion from years past, from the padded boots to the basic leggings covered by a very long, dark blue coat that covered a dress shirt with a red tie. To his hip on either side was an interesting pouch and a seemingly everyday sword in its adorned scabbard, though the hilt seemed to be made with a strikingly odd material. His shoulders were adorned with silver epaulets and his hands covered by gloves that seemed to have distinct markings to them. His dark grey hair and unshaven face seemed to mask his true age, as his face held no wrinkles nor blemishes. His hat seemed to echo the look of Vanessa's, but with a few design differences. It also seemed to be made with a more sturdy material than most hats, as it seemed to be older than most.

After a moment, the old fisherman turned away from his new drinking companion. "Man, I got nothin' to say to ya, Jacob." Edward said, taking a drink of the !#%$ from his glass, wincing slightly from the bitter and warm taste.

The man frowned. "'Jacob'. It sounds so unimpressive now. Unfitting." After a small moment of thought, he looked over to the man. "My boy, you seem distressed. What have I done to deserve such piss-poor treatment?" He took a drink as well, letting the hot sensation flow down his throat with no problem. The face contorted back to a smile as he looked back to his 'old friend'.

"You know what y' did," Edward replied, deciding not to look at him. "Dangit, ya been gone fer over nineteen years, man. And now here ya go, walkin' in like ya own the place, like it's been only a few days from sea. Leavin' the boys to their own devices...not that ya ever cared about that."

"Hah, so that's what she said? Bah...those boys turned out fine, didn't they?" The man replied back, smirking. He held the small glass aloft, motioning for the bartender to fill it up again. She hesitantly did so, keeping an eye on him. The man continued, "They had their mother."

This comment caused Edward to smack his fist into the bar as he looked over to the man, his face pinched in anger. "Their mother's been dead since they was learnin' to crawl."

"Bah!" The man took a long drink from the glass. "They still learned. Look at ol' Johnny. I'm hearing he's making his legacy proud." He smiled. "Makin' quite a show and getting quite a few lady friends along the way." The man started to laugh. "And the alchemy...I've heard he's aiming high." He stirred the drink around with his hand, watching the liquid swirl around the glass. "He's quite a marvel. I knew he'd take after me."

"...and James?"

"Hm? Oh, right, him. Heh. I'm sure he's doing fine, too."

Edward took another long drink, grumbling. "Of course..."

Jacob brought the glass to his face again, smirking. After a moment, he noticed the bottle was already half-empty. "Dear, you can leave the bottle," the bartender gulped and left the bottle down on the bar. "Thank you. The back door is open. You can leave now. I would take the opportunity." With a flick of his finger, the sound of a door flinging open was heard. The troll looked over to the other man, then nodded at the guest, fleeing as fast as she could.

Once she was clear, the door shut just as fast as it opened. Now the only patrons of this little tavern were two gentlemen. The guest moved his hand to the bottle and began to fill up his own glass again. Edward kept his eyes on him, slowly turning his attention towards the stone that was on the bar. It glowed a low red aura even when it wasn't being active.

"Do you know about the gods, Edward?"

This brought Edward's focus back towards the man's face. "Eh?"

"You know, Mia. The Brother. The floating island that housed the Oracle."

"Don't tell me ya spent close t' two decades just to find religion," Edward said with a sardonic tone. "That never seemed like you."

This brought a chilling laugh from the man, grinning. "Oh, no. Partially, maybe, but it helps to wait things out. Besides, I was just asking."

"Well....I never kept up wit' that stuff. All I know was, some good people and some bad people follow those gods. I tend t'be fond of the good'uns. They don't bother me an' I don't bother them."

"I see." The man took another drink, looking at the bottles along the wall.

"What about you? Do you believe?"

"I do not believe, Edward," the man replied with a smile. "I know."

---

I know about the gods of this world.

How they act in their own, vested self interests. Be it to destroy or to preserve...it matters not what they adhere.


They are entities of a single goal; control. They want nothing more than to control this world they had no part in.

They are parasites, feeding off others in order to achieve their goals.


The Reaper stood in the doorway to Hell, leaning on her sickle. She seemed out of breath, which makes sense considering how quickly she was told to run away.

"Damn it, Sarah." She smacked the wall, holding herself while she leaned on the wall.

She sighed, knowing that Sarah was most-likely correct in making her leave. Without a Reaper, the souls of the world would be lost. They would senselessly roam the earth, losing their very being in the process.

Still, she mused, it was not like she wasn't capable. And if Caitlin is to take the throne, she is going to require more than just her aid as a Reaper. She moved her finger to her chin, contemplating her next move.

....

Maybe she needs a knight.

---

I have seen how the world works now, through my long, long life. My stone has shown me much. It has allowed me a vast knowledge.

It has shown me the Truth: The only way to truly shape this world is not by a god's hand...

...but our own.


The regal-looking casket that the bone golem Etheren was given seemed very important. After all, the then-Captain Augustine had expressly shown a great deal of hidden interest in bringing it down to Seline's depths.

After all, the best way to keep a body from being tampered with is to give it to the entity known to raise a great many undead.

As Etheren's energy pooled around the body in the casket, there was a sudden intake of breath eminating from the inside. And as Miyana opened the casket, she was surprised to see a giant tentacle reach out to her neck. It grasped her tightly as the nude form of a female slowly rose from the casket. Her skin was a pale blue and her silver hair reached down to the bottom of her back, which also had a large fox tail with a reddened color to it. The arm that grasped the woman was a tentacle up to her shoulder. Her other arm was a regular human arm that was grasping the side of the coffin. Her legs were also mostly normal, save for a few patches of fur along the right leg.
Her eyes were the most changed. One eye was bigger than the other and had scales along it. It seemed like the eye of a reptile. Her other eye was one of a normal female. Her mouth seemed to also be like a female's, but the teeth seemed to be in the process of changing into fangs. The woman was breathing heavily, screaming out in agony, her eyes slowly forming streams of tears down her malformed face.

Cevell looked at the scene and sighed. "Great idea. Stellar job." She brought out her shotgun arm and pointed it at the screaming woman. "Raise some failed science fair project. That's just perfect." However, she paused when Miyana held her hand up to her. "tsh...fine." she relented as she rolled her eyes.

Miyana moved her hand over to the woman's face. "Hush now. You're in...quite a lot of pain, are you? I'm sorry. I'm so sorry I'm making you suffer so, but I want you to join me."

The woman continued to scream loudly, causing Cevell to groan and bring up the shotgun again. Miyana once again held her hand up. "Not noticing a pattern? At all? She's just-"

"A....st..."

"Oh, you're speaking now." Miyana smiled, moving the tentacle arm away from her neck. It seemed the rush of adrenaline from being raised had subsided and the creature was slowly losing her strength. "I know it's hard...but I want you to focus." She moved the woman's head to keep its focus on her eyes. "Now speak for me again..."

"...."

"Looks like you caught a broken one there," Cevell noted snidely, letting out a small snort of laughter, "Seems preeeeetty useless."

"My dear, I can't help you...if you can't speak to me." Miyana's tone was gentle and soothing. For a moment, the woman had kept her eyes on the woman.

"Al.................."

"Yes?"

"Al..........ch...........mis..."

The woman slowly crumbled, moving her hands over her body in a fetal position. The three onlookers looked at her as she started to repeat it clearly.

"....al....chem......ist........alchem....ist..................alchemist........"

The woman looked up to Miyana, her eyes wide open and tears streaming.

"The....alchemist...."

Miyana frowned, moving her hand to the woman's human hand. "Alchemist? Did an alchemist do this?"

The woman nodded.

"Then if you join me...you will have your chance to find this alchemist again. To make them pay for this. Will you join me?"

After a moment, the woman slowly nodded, her face wet with tears. "...alchemist....pay....Make....him....pay."

Miyana smiled, moving to wipe some tears from the woman's face. "Good. See, Cevell? All things happen because someone wants it hard enough...and when someone doesn't know what they want, you just need to remind them."

---

That is what my Philosopher's Stone has shown me. For most alchemists, it is the destination, but for me, it is the start of a real journey. A true Great Work awaits me.

Along with all the alchemists in this world.

Including my dear son.


The bottle was finally empty as the man smiled. "The world is going to change. I am going to make it change." He moved his hand to Edward's shoulder, smiling. The stone sparked slightly. "You can finally rest knowing that the world will never be unfairly ruled by the undeserved."

"....w-...what did y-" The old fisherman tried to speak, but his mouth was suddenly dry. He began to cough, holding his hand over his chest. He felt as though a hand was holding his throat from inhaling oxygen, but he was breathing just fine. In a short amount of time, the man fell to the ground, holding his hand to his chest as his heart slowly began to give out. He looked up to his old friend as his vision started to fade.

An image of a woman...his daughter, lovely and sweet...with a toddler to her side as she held one in her arms...and the woman behind her, black hair...striking red...as the red slowly envelops his vision...and turns to black...

---

The man stood, looking around the bar as he sniffed the air. "Hmph...didn't want it to be completely full so fast. I suppose my body is adapting rather well to it, wouldn't you say?" After a moment, he looked to his side. "Hm? Oh right...you make an excellent point." He took the stone into his hand and began to walk to the front door. As he walked, he moved his hand up and brought out a small spark in his hand. In an instant, the spark ignited the entirety of the atmosphere in the inn, engulfing it in a massive explosion.

This brought immediate attention to the trolls of Sehn'ardor as they ran to see their favorite drinking hole destroyed in an instant. It's always nice to have a crowd.

He casually walked out of the inn, dusting off his unsinged clothing. The massive amounts of attention surrounding him only made him smile. They were clearly upset that this lone hume had somehow destroyed their favorite drinks.

One troll spoke up. He was a mighty burly one at that. Of all the trolls, he seemed to be more...unstable.

"Whatchu doin' dere, humie? Dat was full'a good ale!" The crowd seemed to be agreeing with this large troll. He also reeked of the alcohol.

"Was not me that did it. Maybe it was one of your angry gods, hm? Y'manzo didn't much care for that rinky-dink stuff." He looked around, enjoying the look of disgust when he invoked them and their taste in ale.

The big one, however, just laughed. It was a cold laugh, which would bring even great men pause. "Tryin' t' start a fight, ah? Ya be messin' wit' da wrong village at da wrong time." He popped his massive neck with a slight cracking sound as he stepped forward, taking out a small flask from his side pocket. "Well I've been meanin' t' work some kinks an' pent-up aggression since me mate won't be talkin' to me."

This brought the attention of a second troll, who was more lanky and older than the others. "Nah nah sweety. Weh be havin' dah pleasen' ti'-fo'tat last nigh, aye?" He gave the big troll a smirk as the behemoth rolled his eyes.

"Pah..."

The troll brought his lips to the flask and took a drink. Slowly his entire form began to darken as he seemed to be getting even bigger. His grin began to expand along with his tusks. Above him there appeared to be the shape of an eight-headed snake. The vision brought many trolls to their knees and bowed in reverence, save for the old lanky troll, who only nodded his head down. He can't very well get to his knees in his old age, no doubt.

"This iss a bad placce t' be makin' trouble, hume. Dissss be da lasssst time ya gonna breeeeeathe..."

The man looked the troll up and down, frowning. "This is what you trolls call 'flippin out', eh? Invoke one of your smaller, lesser gods into your fights? Not incredibly impressive, though I guess considering what you call it..."

"YOU INSSSSSSULT Y'MANZO, FATHER OF DA TROLLSSSS. ENTITY OF DA MORTAL COILSSSS. DIE, HUMAN, AND LET YER SSSSSSPIRIT BE CONSSSSSUMED BY JIN'ZAKK." The giant behemoth began his assault, his mouth pooling a black smog out of the corners of his tusk.

Interesting! It seemed like the big behemoth was letting the so-called beast god speak through him. What a fascinating species.

But he doesn't have time to learn their wily ways today.

In an instant, he moved his left hand back. As the troll was about to grab him, the man spread his back hand straight across the troll's face in a single strike.

For a moment, time seemed to have stopped.

One of the troll's giant tusks was sent flying through the sky, leaving behind a trail of blood. The eight-headed snake spirit that was enveloping the troll was shrieking in pain as it dissipated in the air, as if the slap had pushed them away forcefully. The troll's massive form had significantly been reduced back to its original form. His eyes went white and even before his feet were lifted from the ground, he was knocked unconscious. The troll that could only have weighed a ton before was now almost floating through the air as he crumpled with a loud thud onto the docks. The wood started to splinter around him, but it still held him up from the water.

This guy must have been able to smack this behemoth 50 feet backwards. He certainly didn't seem impressed by it, but the trolls were more than amazed.

"This was a fascinating development. This village was a host to a bit of intriguing characters for me." He began to walk away from the scene as the trolls just stood in astonishment. They dared not even attempt to strike at this hume after what had just happened. Even the lanky old troll didn't dare make a move against him and went to poke his stick at the defeated troll instead.

As Jacob walked slowly down the dock, he stopped short of a man who was near a ship, staring at him. Before he could step forward, a man came out with a broom.

"Oy, stay back. This ship is private propert-"

Jacob grabbed the broom and snapped it between two fingers.

"...uh....property that is also available f-for renting?" The older man forced a grin as he immediately ran away. "K-Ken, come!"

Ken was about to walk away before the man grabbed him by the collar. "Hold a moment, boy. You have dark magics about..." He looked to his side towards what appeared to be nothing. "What? Are you sure?" He waited a moment and smiled, looking at the man called Ken. "Well, well...what a small world it is." He brought Ken close and brought the stone up to his eye. "Why don't we see if we can't have you tell my boys 'hello', shall we?"

The stone gleamed.

---

The talking resumed on John's next big move. There was a lot of joy to be had there.

Ken-cow was grazing for a time beforehand and was walking over until he started to stumble. All that seemed to come out was a shakey moo which alerted the others. They all turned their attention to the cow who seemed to be walking funny.

James was the first to step forward. "Hey, Ken, are you okay?"

For a moment, the cow lowered its head, shaking it lightly. He looked back up towards James and John.

"....helloooooo..."

As he spoke, Ken-cow lost balance and fell to the ground before anyone else could react fast enough. What they didn't hear were a few bones cracking in the older cow's body.

---

Jacob watched as the man called Ken began to convulse. "Oy. I wasn't finished yet." He shook the boy lightly.

The eyes seemed to be more dull than before. "Damn. Broken contact before I could even see where you two were..." He dropped Ken to the ground in a heap. "Hmph...ah, well. That will come when I need to know, I'm sure."

He moved his hand in front of him as the stone gleamed once more, causing a portal to appear in the center of the dock. He began to walk towards it, taking one last look at the village before stepping through.

Ken the human was sputtering, shaking on the ground. Whatever had just happened, it felt as though he was being assaulted by all sides from senses in locations he's never been before. As if his mind was trying desperately to catch up to it all.

The feeling was slowly dissolved as the dark magic that flowed through him before was manifesting yet again. It was taking hold once more, bringing the man's emotions down and causing him to fall into a deep slumber.

---

Meanwhile, in a rather far-off area, a beastly white bird monster screeches a horrible, glass-shattering noise as it attempts to break out of its cage, reaching out towards a man with its human-like hand.

The man was wearing a black robe with a long-nosed mask. He poured out a small liquid near the cage as the liquid began to burst out into a smog towards the cage.

In an instant, the screeching from the monster seemed to stop.

Hee...hee...heeahaha...the final ingredient...my stone is almost done...

The man walked away from the now-empty cage, stretching his arms up into the air. He took off his mask and yawned.

Ahhhh...I'll figure it all out soon enough...true equality...just need to fix them...my homunculi...

---

The Gods have overstayed their welcome

Now is the time for the world to return to its true owners. The ones that had been granted it by birth, but stolen from them by the so-called gods.

The ones called human. The ones called beast. The ones called mortals.

They only need to be led to their promised lands. They need someone to remind them of what they truly desire.

By the guiding hand of Doctor Methisus. And his Philosophers.

Wherever this man is now, he smirked and looked into the stone that reflected back at him.

That sounds good enough to him.

To Be Continued...Whenever Someday

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