Cyrvak gave a nod to the woman standing next to him, waving his hand dismissively at her. "See it done," he instructed (or commanded, perhaps, with that tone of voice), and the woman cloaked in black swaths of flowing fabric bowed her head to him, the action highlighting the spiraling red horns that curved back along her head to frame the coif of her hair. She remained only a moment in that position before the blackness of her robes seemed to collapse in on itself and her, taking her away from the arena. Cyrvak wasn't concerned with the prying eyes of his students (if most could even be called such, pitiful as they were), and held no qualms in conducting his own dealings on the campus grounds. After all, his place in Hell was far more demanding (and infinitely more interesting) than this miserable place. He could feel their eyes, though, knowing that several of his students had a habit of attempting to spy, and still others were too curious. Which was this one, he wondered? Nokomis was standing amongst the throng of students, watching the instructor. If it were her choice, she wouldn't be here. She was passive by nature and had no interest in combat, unless defensively, and she had that taken care of as far as she was concerned. Still, she watched the man with a look of boredom. Then she glanced at the massive clock. Nope, class is still beginning, she thought monotonously. It was habitual and perfectly natural for Cyrvak to do a little prying of his own, browsing the surface thoughts of these brats to see if delving deeper were even necessary. Some of them had nothing beyond surface thoughts, it seemed, and some even put up a little bit of a fight (though with their years, even a natural psychic would be hard pressed to keep him out of their heads). He preyed upon the fearful, the weak, and... Crimson eyes turned toward one student in particular.
"Nature lover," he called to her, shadows licking at her feet. The fearful, the weak, and the bored. "What do you fight for?" Nokomis' gaze had drifted off, panning around the arena, wondering what it was like when full. Suddenly, shadows crept to her feet, arresting her attention. She looked up at Cyrvak and numerous giggles sounded from other students. She furrowed her brow; great, let's laugh at the tree giant again.
"I don't fight," she glanced at the others meaningfully, "I'm not a beast." They shut up and a few bared their teeth shamelessly. "I protect. Can't you pick on someone else, Sir? I'm a tree for goodness sake. I don't brawl, I stand around."
"If you had no reason to fight for your survival, then why are you here?" Cyrvak responded, stepping toward her as the shadows aided in making sure that the other students cleared a path for him. "Why not go be a tree and stand around in a forest instead of among such pitiful beasts?" An outward gesture of both clawed hands and a sneer indicated his disgust with most of the students here regardless. "The correct answer then should be your life. If you fight for nothing else..." You might as well lay down and die at their feet, is a dark whisper just for her.
"I fight for nature!" Nokomis exclaimed, but she hated admitting it, because so far people here only laughed at her for it. She blushed a little. Cyrvak had rattled her cage for sure, as she took a affirmed step forward, her hands balling into fists. Either that, or it was the annoying little voice just then. Her long tresses curled, threatening to turn a sickly green. "While everyone else feels obliged to destroy it," she flapped a hand, indicating the other students. She continued to rant. "I catch 'em everyday, practicing their fighting on a tree until it falls down, littering, or trampling on the wild flowers!" Her skin crawled as bark threatened to surface and her hair started twisting. Cyrvak's lip curled upward slowly, sharply, into a rather malicious smirk.
"Such a cold, cruel world you live in, child," he intoned, tendrils of flame licking backward from the sides of his head to join the shadowy horns displayed in stark contrast against his silver hair. The other students, save a few aligned with the element, scrambled backward as a ring of Hellfire lit the already parched earth to encircle the two of them. "You blame the beast for its nature, do you? Are you aware that the struggles of beasts hardly concern your precious nature? Does it wound you that it's all collateral damage?" Nokomis shook her head. She knew he was antagonising her, so summoning fire was almost predictable. Earth was the crap under fire's shoe. Still, a thin layer of bark covered her face; tiny lumps and bumps visible under her clothes to a keen eye.
"But the beast still returns to its shelter made of wood, still uses the medicine from the herbalist and eats the food that nature provides," Nokomis said somberly. She could feel the searing heat of the fire around her; she hoped it wouldn't venture too close.
"What beast am I, then, who returns to no shelter, requires no medicine, and need no sustenance? And yet I destroy, and that is my nature. Will you wage war against those who destroy what you hold dear?" Or will your existence be meaningless? Cyrvak tilted his head back slightly, looking down at her (and did it matter if it were actually down? He could look down at anyone, even those taller than himself). "Do you exist only to hide?"
"Then I don't deal with the likes of you," she answered, frowning. She approached him, standing close and said "you mustn't belong here, Sir. But if you intrude on nature's threshold, I have little choice but to try?" she finished airily, before stepping away from him and raising her arms. The earth rose up high and then tumbled back on itself like a wave, consuming the fire beneath it, allowing Nokomis to escape the fires confines as she daintily hopped through the gap.
"I think you should focus on the small fry, kid," Cyrvak countered, lip curling. "You think yourself just, as any creature would when fighting for what they think is the course of things. Are you here to learn or are you here to hide from the humanity you can't stand?"
"I don't hide," she said, slowing to a halt. She paused, weighing up the possibility of getting out of this class... "You're the teacher, Sir. You can teach me something right? Then yeah, course I'm here to learn," she nodded as she spoke. Then Nokomis heard a sly remark from one of the students:
"What could Cyrvak teach a tree?" followed by fits of giggles. There was giggling, and then there was a sudden, loud crunching, squelching sound as Cyrvak swept the legs out from under the student who had spoken, following that by driving his heel down on their head so forcefully that it quite effectively crushed it. And then there was silence. "If by chance I find another need to demonstrate the consequences of acting a fool during my instruction, I want the sorry lot of you to remember that I am well within my role to snuff out whoever I deem a nuisance." He let his gaze sweep over the rest of them, head cocked back as his eyes landed on Nokomis again. "And for your information, I have molded more out of less, and there are far, far worse things I can do to a creature than this... merciful punishment. Does anyone else want to question my capabilities?" he asked, grinding his heel a bit into the bloody pulp that was left of the student's head. Nokomis watched as Cyrvak crushed the student's head like squeezing a grape. The expression on her face twisted as the student's face contorted into blood and mush. After grimly staring at the scene, she looked up to Cyrvak when he addressed her, before giving an understanding nod. Everyone else did the same. Inside, there was a small, secret glee, at the student's fate; buried beneath the guilt and shock. The corner of Cyrvak's lips twitched upward ever so slightly, a subtle hint at his amusement at their expense. But just as quickly his lip curled, sharp teeth showing in a sneer as he spun on his heel and began to walk out of their little circle. "Now then, we will begin with hand to hand combat, since I don't trust the lot of you not to cut your own hands off with a blade, as amusing as that might be. Let's see where you miserable little shits fall on the spectrum of useless, shall we?"
Cyrvak proves a point and Nokomis shits a brick!
Don't mean to jump in here, but is it wrong to use Italic for telling the reader what their thinking rather than saying. I mean like this.. " We got to win this Draxie, it might be our only chance" I thought
Not at all! Italics represent internal thoughts wonderfully, but avoid enclosing them in speech marks and perhaps "I thought" is unnecessary (my personal opinion)
Good to see this up. Do you think that perhaps next time you could post it without the names, and keeping the existing formatting? I know it's a bit more trouble, I just prefer it that way, and I tend to use italics to good effect, which gets lost if the formatting doesn't get carried over. It also flows better and looks nicer when it looks more like a story and less like a conversation log. o u o
So basically, you'd prefer it to be formatted in continuous prose?
Mhm, I like the look and read better that way. It's how Evit and I write in Googledocs, and how we post all of our logs on AoE. It's a personal decision of course, and a lot of the things written with some of the other younger members of this particular group might fit the above format better, but if it's paragraphs, I always prefer it to look clean.
I hope Nokomis and Cyrvak learn to "get along". He could teach her so many valuable things~ e ve