Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

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Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

Post by Wolfe on Sat Sep 20, 2014 5:42 pm

Wolfe frowned as he mulled his situation over. He hadn't found Toril since he learned that she'd overheard the Crusaders' plans. Maybe that was for the best. As far he knew her mentor and surrogate father could keep her out of trouble. So, instead he was faced with the difficulty of having to start some literal fires to keep the Council's loyalists busy. He looked ahead, watching the Royal Library with a jaded look in his eyes.

"Book burning... That really would be horrible..."

The swordsman sighed dramatically and turned away, scanning the area for a different but still just as appropriate topic. He spotted one quickly enough. The Council's barracks.

Hrm. Any recruit worth their salt should be able to get out of the barracks before the fire becomes inescapable. I don't mind testing that theory either and it would certainly get the loyalists' attention. I figure that should be good enough for Allison. For right now, I have to make sure Zahn stays safe and the only thing I figure can do that is obeying orders. For now, at least. Soon enough, I'll be sure to strike at the Crusaders' throats. I've had enough of listening to a bunch of psychos that think hurting people is somehow for the peoples' benefit.

Wolfe took out his sword and smiled sadly, his emotions very private and self-contained as he hardened himself to what was about to happen.

"If there is a God, I hope he can forgive me for this."

A deft flick of sword and the friction he caused from running it along the ground caused several sparks to kick up as he unleashed one of his wind-based attacks on a nearby barrel. The barrel caught fire almost instantly. He swiftly grabbed it and threw it into one of the barracks windows. Time to play up his villainy.

"BURN FOOLS! BUUUUUURN!"

Wolfe mentally chided himself. He was trying waaaay too hard at the moment. Might as well paste a fake mustache on his face and starting twirling it. Or carrying a series of playing cards with raunchy pictures on them and fiddling with them. Any more obviously fake and he would've turned into a cartoon right here in the middle of the street. However, the job was done and he would wait to see the results. Swinging his sword up, he placed the weapon on his shoulder and smirked.

Come on, recruits. Hurry up and escape. I need to make this look good, and as long as you run into me I can fake a defeat.

Hopefully he wouldn't be waiting too long. He didn't look forward to coming up an excuse with having to run into a building he was trying to set fire too to save the people inside. The Crusaders wouldn't even have to bother entertaining a lie at that point, they'd just go after Zahn. He couldn't let that happen.

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Re: Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

Post by Avernale on Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:27 am

It was moving day for Helena "Avernale" Albrandt. Although she was stationed in Oak Town, technically, she was sent to Crocus for a three-week training course. Having been transferred from the Royal Guard to the Magic Council, she didn't really see why any of this was necessary. She's had both training and combat experience, so she doubted there was anything more she needed to be taught. Okay, so maybe she needed to learn how to use the Lampade properly, but it wasn't like anyone else could use it, and she was already proficient in huge-ass swords. As far as she could tell, the spells weren't terribly difficult to use. You just have to swing it the right way and watch everyone around you go crazy. Simple.

At any rate, here she was, and with more luggage than anyone had seen anybody bring to the barracks. It was definitely more luggage than anyone needed to bring, for that matter. Her senior recruits had laughed when they saw the mountain come to rest just outside the door and wondered what sort of super-princess, girly-noob had darkened their doorstep this time. They stopped, of course, once they got a load of the 6'6" muscle-chick that had carried the load all the way from the train station herself and had only set it down because it wouldn't all fit through the door at once. She refused any assistance in hauling it up to her room, opting to carry it herself. She was carrying the last of it to her room now, no more worse for wear than when she started.

While she shouldered the burden all on her own, she wasn't by herself the whole time. Her new roommate had followed her around, keeping her company and having pleasant conversation with her. Now that they were almost done, she had to ask the question: "What is in all these bags?"

Avernale glanced at the bags she was carrying and shrugged. "I don't remember, exactly. Probably clothes."

"You don't remember? Why did you even bring all this stuff?"

"For the challenge," Avernale replied with a smile. "When I travel, I like to test my strength by carrying as much stuff as I can for as long as possible. I'm going to need a lot more luggage next time, though. I barely even broke a..."

And that's when she saw the flaming barrel flying towards her. She didn't even give it a moment's thought before dropping what she was carrying and throwing herself through the window. She tackled the barrel in mid-air before it could hit the building and the two of them crashed down into the ground. The barrel exploded on impact, sending burning debris everywhere but not enough to catch the building on fire.

Avernale pulled herself to her feet and dusted the burning embers off her uniform. "That was close." She glanced around. "Who'd throw a flaming barrel at us like that?"

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Re: Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

Post by Wolfe on Sun Sep 21, 2014 6:00 am

As Avernale had thrown herself out the window, Wolfe silently groaned. This is what he got for his trouble? An idiot who thought theatrics were more important than action? Wonderful.

How am I going to make this defeat seem even a little convincing? Oh, wait, no. I guess she is a massive moron. Shouldn't be too hard then, I guess.

Wolfe sighed, mostly to himself, and sheathed his sword on his back, clapping slowly to gain the attention of the massive woman.

"I guess brains don't come with all that muscle, do they? And here I was thinking I'd actually find a challenge. I can see why we're supposed to get rid of you loyalists now. Maybe Allison was right. That'd be a shame..."

Wolfe glared at the woman. He figured at full height she was probably way taller than he was. She was slouching a little after having rolled into the pavement with the flaming barrel. She carried with her... a sword? It looked like a boat oar, but had several lacrima on it. So, another Holder mage, maybe? No matter. Wolfe had already gotten a pretty bad impression of her skills. She wasn't the type to really be effective in combat. All flourish, no finish. The way she carried herself made him think she thought of herself as more important and skilled than she actually was. He wondered if she'd gotten a lot of undue praise at some point. If she had, it had obviously all gone straight to her head. She looked fresh off of training and her relaxed nature belied a sort of arrogant demeanor Wolfe found he just couldn't stand. He sighed again, this time even more pointedly. Time to talk again...

"The name's Wolfe. I'm here to burn down your little dollhouse. Can't have too many morons still wandering about while the Crusaders do their work."

Wolfe was being deliberately nasty and at the same time, revealing as much information as he could. He didn't really want to give this woman a fighting chance, but his honor demanded he at least face her properly and give his name before starting combat. He could've killed her as she rolled out the window, but he was just so disappointed he felt like he could hold back and still win the upcoming fight. Which was a problem. She might choose to not fight him, or even if they did fight, he might still win while holding back. Not that it mattered too much to him, but this was a fight he had to lose. He sized her up in his silence. She was probably much slower than he was, even naturally. That made the fight even harder for him to lose. She might be able to take hits better than he could though that was assuming he only used his fists, which at this point seemed like a bad idea. He couldn't tell if she was stronger than he was though. He was unnaturally strong for his size and frame and usually surprised opponents with his combat prowess. Still...

Not sure what that sword of hers' can do though. Also, if she grabs me, I'm probably screwed. Unfortunately, there aren't many ways I can be grabbed convincingly. At least, not without looking like I've thrown the fight. To be fair, a flaming barrel attack to alert an opponent was a little too much anyway. I really should've been much more subtle than that. That was just asking to have some idiot stop the attack. Still, something about this one makes me want to hurt her. Which makes it all the more irritating that I have to throw the fight.

Wolfe drew his swords, and took his stance. He figured that if he pulled out his swords now and fought with them he'd look a lot weaker than if he'd been forced to use them. His coat obscured most of his frame, as it was meant to, but Wolfe was almost tempted to take it off. Give his opponent a fighting chance. For a second, he thought about her reaction to all of his own private musings. He'd be willing to be that she thought he was underestimating her. However, if that was what she thought she had an even bigger ego problem than he'd assumed.

"Let's get this over with, Loyalist. I've got bigger fish to fry."

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Re: Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

Post by Avernale on Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:39 am

This guy was totally underestimating her. That's what Avernale thought of the Crusader fool that deigned to call her out. She now stood at her full height was grinning, grinning of all things, at the man. Those were fightin' words he spoke, and she was more than happy to oblige. On the one hand, she wasn't ready to move to a new residence having just finished moving into this one, but on the other if she used her new magic to take out this roguish cur she could be on the fast track to more important things. Not to mention, the first thing he did was insult her intelligence and presume her to be lacking in skill. It didn't matter if it was true or not, she didn't cotton much to being talked down to.

"Oh, two swords!" Avernale said with sarcastically impressed tone. "Aren't we mister fancy pants?" She drew her eiku, the Lampade, with one hand and then held it with two. "I'm sure all your Crusader pals are just jealous of your little blades, but, as you can see, mine's bigger." She held the sword up at about shoulder level, angled horizontally with the tip of the weapon pointed squarely at Wolfe, and began to circle him. "You said your name was Wolfe, right? HA! A fitting name for a Crusader dog!"

Avernale may not be the brightest tool in the drawer, but she was competent enough to not take her opponent so lightly as to let him go unanalyzed. His delivery was theatrical, but his acting was sub-par at best. People who were dramatic did so with conviction, but there was little power behind what he said. He was obviously baiting her, goading her to make the first strike. He made it very clear who he was, why he was here, and who sent him, although she didn't recognize the name. It was possible he wasn't actually a Crusader and just wanted people to think he was one for whatever reason. Maybe he was trying to make them look bad, which she was pretty sure they didn't need help with, or he was just some lunatic who thinks he's a Crusader. That's a paddlin' either way, and she happened to have one handy. Still, if he was baiting her, it was probably better not to strike first in case he had something up his sleeve. For the moment, she took the "Wait and see" approach...

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Re: Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

Post by Wolfe on Wed Sep 24, 2014 6:49 am

Annnnnd she saw right through him. PERFECT. Wolfe sighed and looked at the Loyalist with pity in his eyes. She was too smart for her own good. If she'd bought his act he could've just run away or done something to take himself out of the fight. He didn't like losing fights, and sometimes he even liked winning them, but this was something he had to make look good. If it looked like he wasn't really trying that would only hurt all parties involved.

"... dammit. Well, this sucks... Um. I have to get you to knock me out, but I also have to fight back soooo..."

Wolfe looked around and finally it dawned on him what he should do.

"Actually, you want to wait to see if more of your buddies show up? I might actually lose if there are more than one or two people joining you to fight me, even if I fight my hardest."

There was no sarcasm in Wolfe's voice, and the swordsman had clearly chosen to ignore Avernale's own banter. Her words were full of confidence and snark, but the fact that Avernale had not chosen to attack him showed she was able to calmly think things through just as anyone else with a brain could do. So, he might've misjudged her a bit, though he was almost certain his assessment of her battle skills wasn't too far off. He watched her carefully as she slowly circled around him with her massive sword pointed straight at him. He realized that she'd called him a dog as she rounded him the second time.

"Oh right. Like I haven't heard that one before. Though the Crusader bit is new, I suppose."

Wolfe' gaze darkened and he leveled his visible eye at Avernale. He clearly didn't take kindly to being associated with the Crusaders.

"Don't group me with the likes of those bastards."

He swiftly combined his swords together and made several quick strikes in the air, assuring himself that his sword skills hadn't dulled in the time he'd been taking off from doing any sort of real fighting. He pointed his blade at Avernale and his glare grew harsher.

"You're a member of the Council. Don't just circle around me and wait to see what I do. I've declared myself a Crusader. I tried to set your building on fire! Come on! Show no mercy! Take me out! It doesn't matter what sort of story I have. You have a duty. Do it."

With one quick motion Wolfe gave his sword a flourish and re-readied himself for battle. If his would-be-opponent didn't attack soon he'd have to charge her and he certainly didn't want to do that. As much as he might think this woman needed a few more months of training to make a proper warrior, and he wouldn't mind teaching her a thing or two right now, he couldn't afford to wait that long to ensure Zahn's safety. Plus, while something told him he'd enjoy fighting her and showing her up his first and foremost concern had always been and would always be making sure his family was safe. It was now or never time, and as long as he got beat in a believable way he could make sure his son didn't become one of the Crusaders' targets. He'd have to find his daughter afterward, though he figured she wouldn't be targeted by the Crusaders. Knowing her, she might just agree with them, though as his flesh and blood he honestly only cared if she was safe or not.

"C'mon! What're you waiting for? Fight me! Take me down!"

Luckily he knew it didn't matter whether he said he was trying to lose the fight on purpose aloud. If the Crusaders were watching him at this very moment all he had to do was give the fight a decent attempt, or at least what looked like a decent attempt in his watchers' eyes, and they'd spare his son. They already believed Wolfe was under their thumb. The cared little for his opinions and declarations of independence from them or thoughts of eventual revenge. He was just a tool to them. If he was broken, toss him out. If he refused to work, however, it was time to fine tune their methods of control.

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Re: Wolfe's Crisis! Burning Bridges at Both Ends!

Post by Avernale on Thu Sep 25, 2014 3:57 am

...What did he just ask her? The audacity! She didn't care how tough this guy thought he was, Avernale should be more than match for any man! She could certainly outfight any of the men in her old squad, and tales of her prowess were all but legendary among the Royal Guard. How dare he not take her seriously!? She might not have much experience as a wizard, per se, but she's had years of combat training and experience. Magic or not, she had to be on par with this guy at least. So incensed she was, that she pretty much ignored everything else he said afterward, least of all the part about not wanting to be counted amongst the other Crusaders he had just insisted he was a part of.

"You asked for it!" she declared, and immediately charged straight at him. Lavender flames surged from the vessel at the base of the blade and flowed up the grooves, setting alight the archaic script engraved on the broad side. Once she was within striking distance (a good two meters, incidentally) she swung the Lampade in a mighty arc, almost like a bat, and attempted to slam the sword upside his head.

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