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Fantasy [Isekai Hell] The Hag of the Overgrown Marshes

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Develius

"Kaiju Enthusiast"

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Mentions:
| Elvario Elvario (Abha & Kalina/Chandra) | Skyhunter Skyhunter (Kesh) | The Last Curse The Last Curse (Cayde) | RavenSong RavenSong (Scylla) | TheSimianMind TheSimianMind (Clarice) | saxon saxon (Nissa) |


Previous Day~

Noticing a tear in Abha's eye after being presented a slice of cake warmed the saurian's cold-blooded heart. When she tried to recall his name after thanking the spined lizard, the general simply bowed his head respectively. "Baharius." he replied in a humbled tone, before Scylla thanked him for his humility. He turned towards her with a modest chuckle. "It certainly gives your nose a break from the abhorrent smells as well." he continued, "Besides, this was a really good cake."



As the next day came, Baharius readied himself for the final leg of the journey ahead of them. Everyone seemed to be in much better spirits today, or at the very least motivated to finish this once and for all and move on with their lives. With a full belly on cooked fish and his blade sharpened and readied the night before, the saurian would find himself near the front of the group. He also brought along a couple of large sticks in his sack, acting as appropriate torches for when they get the opportunity to burn down their quarry. No one agreed specifically on who would lead the expedition, though the saurian general seemed to be one of the better candidates. That being said, Baharius thought Abha would be leading the search - being the individual who was looking for the Ent in the first place - but she didn't seem to eager to lead. Not that he could blame her really. He would reluctantly allow himself the title if presented, still wary of the last time he tried last night, but was willing enough to go through with it.

Kesh would also be in the front, with her keen sense of smell guiding the group through the thick miasmic swampland. Despite the many bends and turns, they would eventually find the source of the unmistakable scent of death and decay. Littered around the vicinity were various corpses and carcasses rotting away into the thick roots and mud, indeed warning the party of the dangers that lied ahead. Even for someone used to these smells, Baharius could feel himself coughing and snorting at some of the more pungent whiffs. It was the scent of death in its most vile and wretched form; a deep decay.

As he walked a few feet forward* towards the base of the hill, he'd certainly tell that the scent was getting stronger in the direction they were heading in. That ent had to be somewhere up that ridge. He knew not exactly how close as of yet, but he was wise to keep his distance. They needed a base plan of action before they can engage the creature. He turned his bulk to face the group, eying everyone determinedly.

"Alright." he announced as he plants his great-sword down, "The smell appears to be coming from just beyond this hill. I assume that's roughly where the ent resides. Before we engage, we need to have rough plan of what everyone should be doing to ensure maximum effectiveness and prevent further casualties. I'd hate to leave this marsh a person short."

Scylla would be the first to chirp in, asking if they should split up. "Maybe." Baharius mentioned with a moment of hesitation. He took a moment to glance towards the land to their right, adjacent to the hill. Further flat empty ground was still present, roughly looking the same as to where they were now. "If we do, there's empty land not far to the northeast where we can spread out. I do not know how exactly one of these creatures fights, but I assume ranged weaponry would be optimal. I do not believe it's wise to engage it up close, judging from the corpses littered about. If this thing is made up of the same materials as a tree, from what I am told, we should be able to burn it."

The general's gaze would finish upon Scylla, knowing well of what she's capable of. That's when his mind sparked into action. He would take out the several large sticks from his bag and place them on the ground. "We will need to make plenty of torches for us to wield and throw into it." He beckons at Scylla, "You know what to do." His glances turns to Kesh as he points to her contraption. "Your bow-contraption should come in handy as well. If anyone here has spare metal or flint blades, grab the biggest sticks to forge up some arrows and light them up." Lastly, Baharius turns to Cayde, "And do you have any concoctions that can coat my blade in fire or acid? If anyone gets ensnared, or we need to get within melee range, I would like to cut through these roots with ease. It might also be helpful to coat any blade we have to ensure we cover all of our bases." he finished, referring to Nissa's Rapier and Abha's hammer... if anyone brought the latter object with them.

Baharius glanced back at everyone else in full and nods, "Any other ideas?"

*(C, 23)
 
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Skyhunter

Entity of Change
Kesh

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As the group travelled along, Kesh still held her small bag of whatever substance was in it to her chest, she still wore Cayde's jacket since she was nearly naked underneath. The Ratkin wasn't happy that Cayde and Kate went off on their own together a while back, Kesh was on Cayde's back like usual, having her hands on his shoulders and her legs wrapped around his waist, luckily, she was light and scrawny. But the Ratkin was annoyed with Cayde, " Hey. " She whispered, " What did you go talk-discuss to that weird lady about? " Kesh whispered to the alchemist. Kesh looked around for Kate in a very suspicious way that she thought was nonsuspicious. When she saw Kate, Kesh quickly turned her head, " I can't smell her, but she is weird Clyde. What were you two discussing-talking about? " It has been two minutes since Kesh had taken any sort of substance and it was bothering her. She had her bag ready to take a whiff when she stopped smelling a fouler stench in this swamp.

Kesh covered her nose for a moment and shook. " OOOOOooh! " Kesh rubbed her face, " That is a nasty smell. And I thought the Mutakin were foul-nasty. " Kesh hopped off Cayde's back landing on her feet looking ahead " There are bodies in the trees... " Kesh stated while covering her nose, she turned to face the group and slowly brought her bag up to her nose while looking at them all and took a deep whiff, blue power entering her nose, leaving the powder on her nose as she looked like she immediately got high. " That's better. " Kesh put her bag away while holding her contraption and bending sideways a bit, she looked at the large talking lizard with her tongue hanging out, " You can taste the air-sky. " What was she talking about? Anyways, Kesh looked at Baharius, " Can I fire-shoot now? " She turned around slowly like a rock while pointing her strange stick contraption, she already fired one fiery shot at the nearest tree to light it up in flames. " oooooh hot-warm! " Kesh cackled a bit.
 
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The Last Curse

21% Delirious

Cayde was very thankful for the less intrusive option of 'donating.' Having a friend drink blood for his arm sounded more altruistic in his head but admittedly way more awkward in reality. "Actually, yeah, that's a way better alternative," He said quickly, grabbing the vial in one hand and drawing his knife in another. Then, with a shallow cut on his forearm, he'd fill the vial and hand it back to Kate, though his gaze quickly went elsewhere as she drank from it. Blood never made him queasy, but watching someone drink his blood was an experience Cayde decided he wasn't ready for yet. That was advanced-level adventurer-alchemist stuff, he figured. Nevertheless, he'd give Kate a small smile once she finished, "Don't worry about it. Your secret's perfectly safe with me," He wrapped his wound with a small piece of cloth and flashed her a thumbs up, "You'll still be a friend in my eyes - even if you are technically dead."

During the trek back to the group, Cayde would realize this was the second time he'd allied with a monster. He wondered: would this bite him in the future? Definitely. Was this another thing he'd have to keep secret? Of course. But in the end, did he care? Cayde went with no. This adventure was already chock-full of regrets, but making a new friend would not be one of them. Besides, he'd already made his fair share of naive, optimistic mistakes today. What harm could another one do?
- - - - -
The start of the next day was quite uneventful. Cayde had done his usual morning routines, followed by more attempts to hide his wound from Kesh, procuring some leftover lantern oil from Clarice, and capped off by the start of their hunt for the Ent. Along the way, Cayde had foraged for some small, aggregated wild berries, leisurely snacking on them as the group moved to and fro. Their taste could only be described as an eldritch love-child between a raspberry, a blackberry, and an orange, but the flavor was satisfying enough to distract him from the nonsensicalness of the swamp. It wasn't enough to distract him from Kesh, though. Or her attempts to prod at his and Kate's conversation.

"Oh," Cayde replied uneasily, his eyes shifting over to Kate. "Well, we were just talking about what we're doing once we get out of here!" He tried to change to subject as quickly as he could, "I told her we're taking you back to Ryken and getting you a brand pet! Say, how does a-" The putrid stench of decay wafted into his nostrils before he'd be able to finish. It was enough to divert Kesh's attention elsewhere, though Cayde only wished it hadn't sucker-punched his nostrils. "Agh! Oh, god!" He groaned, throwing on his mask hurriedly. They'd found the Ent; that was evident.

Baharius was the first to organize the group, setting the groundwork for their approach. Cayde followed not too far behind (B-24) "Yeah, I could definitely throw together something flammable, though I doubt it'd be of much use on your sword. Don't want hot oil running down your hands too, y'know?" He stated, slinging his pack off his back, "Still, if we throw them at the Ent and hit it with some fire..." Cayde imitated an explosion with his hands, with a loud fwoosh to match, "We'll turn it into firewood. Literally." He chuckled and pulled out his stash of alcohol, a container of lantern oil, and a few bottles, "But, if fire only does us so much, I'll get a good look at the thing. See if I can figure out any other weaknesses."

Mixing the two chemicals together, a faint memory of Vegard would slowly float into his head again. It was of those dreadful vines and their seemingly life-absorbing capabilities. He had a feeling those would also make an appearance here, so he figured it wouldn't hurt to let the group know. "Also, let's not forget about what Abha said about those plants. Touching them will drain our energy, so it's best we stay on the lookout for any rouge roots and vines of the sort." He poured the concoction into several bottles, corked each, and turned to present them to the party, "Now, who wants a dangerous substance?"

Only then would he notice Kesh light up the nearest tree on fire. "Wha- KESH! Subtlety! Save that for the evil tree!" He said although he couldn't argue with her enthusiasm. It'd been a while since he'd set something on fire, too.
 
The Overgrown Marshes – Death's Roots
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Mentions: Baharius Develius Develius | Scylla RavenSong RavenSong | Cayde The Last Curse The Last Curse | Kesh Skyhunter Skyhunter | Clarice TheSimianMind TheSimianMind | Nissa saxon saxon

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Scylla suggested to split up, but otherwise remained where she was.

Baharius took a few steps forward and suggested to prepare. It was unclear why he suddenly imagined Abha to have a sword, as the rabbit was still weaponless after nobody brought her hammer along after they rescued her from the Boggearts. As for his plans, she had little additional insight to offer him. “I'll stay back and try to support you all.” That was the best she could offer, possibly also the safest, as she didn't wish to risk being at the front whilst weaponless where she'd also be at a higher risk of turning.

Kesh fired at a nearby tree, successfully having it burn. That said, it didn't burn for long, nor did it burn well. Even though this part of the swamp was less drenched in water as the prevoius parts, it was by no means dry and the threes were old and sturdy, so it was clear they'd need to make use Clarice's five clay containers of oil to really get a fire going. It also looked like Kesh's contraption was good for one more shot, as it was creaking heavily when pulled back.

Cayde, assumedly with Kesh riding him, made his way to behind Baharius and prepared some of his flasks.

Chandra Jarmil

Taking Scylla's advice, Kalina nodded. “Alright. I'll take this along and make my way to the north-east of here.” She took one of the clay containers with oil and some torches, before sneaking away (Stealth B) to the north-east.

However, around the same time she managed to stealth away, the rest of the group would see their suspect tree start to move. Whatever image they had of Ents, this one was particularly large and twisted. Some decaying corpses could be seen hanging from between its roots and branches.

Swamp Ent
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“You know I can hear you, little ones, do you not?” It turned out their decision to prepare and discuss these things on arrival, after moving even closer and without trying to whisper or use stealth, might not have been the most tactical. Even Baharius, trying to keep some distance, had underestimate how close the Ent had been and how easily their conversation carried through the forest. They could blame the foul smell of corpses for it, or lack of sleep from the past night. Either way, the Ent had spotted their group, as well as the burning tree that pretty much flared up their location and warned the Ent of their plans.

“Another group of fools trying to burn me down?” The creature gave out a sigh that sounded more like branching rustling in the wind. “Why don't we go through the normal deal instead? Present to me a sacrifice and I shall grant you one of my fruits. If you're out here to hunt me, you should know how valuable those are. I'm feeling particularly generous today, so I'll exchange it on a favourable one to one rate.”

(OOC: I'll leave it up to you how much each character would know about the fruits of an Ent, although skill-wise, Cayde would know the most, if not all of it.) The fruits of an Ent were quite legendary, as they were said to be able to revitalise someone, bringing back their youth and vitality. Considering even most high levels of healing magic were not capable of stopping the ageing process (S-rank would be almost unheard of), the fruits were extremely valuable, both to the insanely wealthy wishing to eat them and to the scientific minds wishing to study their properties. However, a fruit took considerable amounts of mana to produce, which is why most Ents rarely grew them. One way to circumvent that, was to use mana from other sources. The many rotting corpses would be one such a source, assuming they'd been alive and sipped dry before reaching their current state of decay. Someone with magic in their veins, or a lot of vitality, could probably be used to grown an additional fruit...

Abha Roshan
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“Don't you dare assume any of them would take your offer, you foul beast!” Abha yelled out. She was clearly holding herself back from storming straight at the Ent. “Tell me who you gave your roots to in order to curse our city!” She yelled. However, the Ent didn't seem to be interested in answering her in the slightest. Instead, he awaited an answer to his offer. He did, however, keep a close eye on their movements. Were they to start reaching for their oil, torches or weapons, they'd be taking a considerable risk.

(OOC: A few context notes: There are (yet again) Corpse Beetles around, although they are mostly skittering about along the very edges of the map/area, staying away from the Ent himself. The bright green parts of the map (to the east) turned out to be pretty soggy ground, as Kalina had to be very careful and slow about going through it without leaving a clear trail through the soggy soil. Although it might be a trick of the mind, in their peripherals, it was like they saw a bit more moving than just the Ent itself, especially near the other trees and shrubs.)
 

saxon

Member
Nissa
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Nissa, in her mind, thought the only useful one was Clarice in this whole party; she didn't trust a single one. Though that wasn't to say she trusted Clarice either, it was more of an interest in a person. Her mind control ability was interesting enough that Nissa would accept more of a risk. With the group now back together, she continued to walk as they searched the swamp further. Glancing over toward kate as she is heard her speak and noticed the glare. To which she simply glared back at the woman. Out of all the people here, she trusted her the least, and that was saying a lot compared to one of the other group members who tried to attack her openly.

Besides surprise, the whole part of her stabbing the rabbit and Kate seemingly unphased didn't sit well with her. Compared to how Kate had acted when the group first met up there was fear after that not so much. Again it didn't sit well and was probably something she would bring up after the group had dispersed and she could confront the girl in a more private manner. Now that wasn't to say she was looking for a fight. But she was going to speak her mind regardless though her thoughts were interrupted as the witch mentioned something smelling. To which Nissa stopped and sniffed the air, it was the smell of rotting bodies she was sure of that. Though she couldn't tell where it was coming from.

She then moved north two squares and started to look around the trees. To which she found the bodies in the roots of the trees. "Well, I think we found the source of the smell or at least a cause of it. Though I think we are getting close to this monster." She spoke not looking back over at the others as she started to scan her surroundings to see if she could spot anything through the trees. "Are you stupid? You want to split up? That is the worst thing to do right now, we have no idea what is out here, and you want to split up?" Nissa chided the witch before she poked one of the bodies.


Now with the ent in front of them offering gits Nissa scoffed at the idea, she knew they were valuable but really would anyone be stupid enough to do it? She wouldn't be surprised if the rabbit turned on them to get the information she sought. Anyone would do anything if they were enticed enough to which Nissa made sure to keep the rabbit within her sight.

"Hey treebeard you want to skip the part where you try to entice us with offering and just skip to the part we just cut you down?" Nissa inquired as she grew tired of these games she didn't care for the paladin's quest nor the answers she sought. If the rabbit dropped dead it wouldn't make a difference to her and if this ent killed the rabbit who was she to say it wasn't her time to go.

mentions:
Elvario Elvario RavenSong RavenSong The Last Curse The Last Curse Skyhunter Skyhunter TheSimianMind TheSimianMind Develius Develius
 
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The Last Curse

21% Delirious

With the ent finally making its appearance, Cayde gulped, wishing he was the one who had some subtlety. But, sadly, it'd hardly mattered now - the monster had heard everything, and its alluring deal was the only thing stopping it from attacking. A deal that immediately roused the latent alchemist within him. He'd only read about it in dusty, esoteric journals, but the fruit of an ent had supernaturally powerful healing capabilities. It was their other use that left him stunned, however. Ent fruit was supposedly an ingredient for the legendary Panacea. The 'chicken soup of mortality,' as Zane would say, and one of the pieces required for the Magnum Opus.

For a moment, contemplation flashed on Cayde's face. Up to this point, he'd never even considered chasing that fabled stone, but one of the ingredients necessary was right here, offered to him. All he had to do was say yes, give up one of his allies, and it'd be his! It all sounded so straightforward, so quick, and so incredibly foolish. "Yeah, nice try, tree," Cayde thought, removing his mask and attaching it back to his hip. As the stench poured into his nostrils, he immediately regretted doing so, but his decision still hadn't wavered. No one would be sacrificed to this ent, Not Kesh, Baharius, Kate, Scylla, Clarice, Abha, or even Nissa. The Magnum Opus and its stupid Philosopher's Stone could wait another day. He needed to get them all out of here alive.

So, when Nissa antagonized the Ent, Cayde tried his best to look surprised, "Hey! Calm down! Let's hear him out, alright?" He knew there'd be no way they could fight the ent from out here, and if they did, whatever was hiding in his peripherals would surely join the fray. They'd have to get closer, and Cayde was starting to think of how. Using [Deception] and [Persuasion], he addressed the monster before him, "Look, we all got off on the wrong foot. Excuse us. We never expected you to be so generous with your offer. Thank you for that," He said, raising his hands in surrender, "Some of us might've been a bit harsh, myself included, but I assure you, now you've got my attention."

Praying his facade would work, Cayde slowly advanced (18, F), but not before giving a furtive wink to the others, hopefully, his [Deception] covering it. "I can't say my entire party'll be happy, but I'm sure most of us can come to a swift agreement. We all just need to talk it out." He said, utilizing [Bestiary Bookworm] as his eyes scanned over the monster, trying to recall enough information about this monster before he turned to address the group as a whole. "So, are you any of volunteering? Or do you wanna come up here and talk?"

  • Bestiary Bookworm - Medicine D, Perception E, Nature D Survival E, - After spotting a creature, Cayde can recall useful on its strengths, weakness, and typical behavior. Currently works on creatures of D-grade and lower - Grade D - 2 post cooldown

 

Develius

"Kaiju Enthusiast"

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Mentions:
| Elvario Elvario (Swamp Ent, Abha, Kalina/Chandra) | Skyhunter Skyhunter (Kesh) | The Last Curse The Last Curse (Cayde) | RavenSong RavenSong (Scylla) | TheSimianMind TheSimianMind (Clarice) | saxon saxon (Nissa) |



As the alchemist presented his case, Baharius nodded in approval. Admittedly he was a little bit disappointed that he wouldn't be able to wield a flaming sword, but nonetheless he also wouldn't want oil running down his hands if nobody had the magic capabilities. Best he could do was utilize a flaming potion for everyone to wield and chuck at their tree opponent. They certainly need to figure out any other additional weaknesses in the ent's defenses, if brute force and fire alone won't do the trick. But the general was willing to do whatever it takes, save for having the bunny turning into the creature they all had miraculously been able to keep at bay for the time being.

"Fair enough." the saurian responded as he stashed the potion in his sack, "In that case all we need to do now is~"

The sudden woosh of a crossbow firing, followed by the fwoosh of flames igniting, caused Baharius to swivel directly at Kesh; having fired upon a tree prematurely. His eyes widened with a guttural hiss, as Cayde would attempt to quiet and subdue the ratkin from doing anymore damage. While the burning was brief, due to the moisture of the surrounding area, he could see the weapon already looking as if it was about to break at any moment. He could only hope that the next, or last, shot would hit home before its immediate destruction. Was this a simple case of butterfingers or her mounting impatience? Either was bad, but he surely hoped it wasn't the latter.

And then, just as he was about to continue talking about the plan, that's when the Ent spoke.

"Ughh, so it IS intelligent..." a frustrated Baharius grumbled as he readied his giant blade, plunging into the muck with peeved force. He was sick of his plans not turning out the way they were before even having a chance to execute them out in the field. His teeth chattered impatiently as the great tree-being offered them his "forbidden fruit" in exchange for a sacrifice. Abha's reaction certainly made it evident of her utter disdain towards him, as present when she spoke of her backstory. Nissa's reaction, for once, mirrored Baharius' reaction in wanting to cut this thing down. The general was already getting real tired of negotiating with these unruly folk, but seeing as how they were going up against an incredibly mighty, even ancient, foe they had to force themselves to quell their rage for just a moment longer.

Curiously, Cayde would proceed to initiate the negotiations, causing Baharius to pause and gave a cautious, if not slightly unnerved, look towards him. They literally tried this with the "shaman" yesterday and were presented with his own face getting obliterated; to make such a deal to a giant ancient and deceptively sentient ent seemed like it was going to be ripe for failure. And to offer one of them to come up and present themselves as THE sacrifice? It seemed utterly absurd! He wanted to speak his mind in protest, but considering Cayde seemed to be the more sensible of the group, the saurian general simply held his breath and awaited for what could possibly come out from this.

For the moment he stood his ground, blade clenched in his hand, as he awaited the next move.
 
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Scylla, looking at the others waited expectedly, perhaps hoping they’d come together and better plan their approach. But it was more of the same this time as well. The witch sighed, looking at the others make their way forward, without much as a word. “Uhhhh.. ok?” she muttered, then flinched with a shrill gasp when Kesh suddenly lit a tree ablaze. “Welp, there goes our element of surprise. Bleh! Who needs it anyway.” She shrugged, then observed the flames as an awestruck child watching fireworks.

Just as she was about to make her way out, her attention is pulled toward Nissa going on about the plan she just suggested. Pouting and crossing her arms, she stomps a foot on the ground. “I’m not stupid! Ok?! You silly weirdo! I was hoping we would come together to figure this out, but nooooo.. lets call Scylla stupid! STUPID! hmph! Why, i ought to-” She suddenly huffs. “Well, maybe it was a dumb idea..” she shrugs, before the booming echo of the Ents voice fills the air.

“Whoa..” She exclaims, a bit surprised at how learned and apparrently intilligent this tree folk seemed. Then he mentioned the bit about sacrificing one of their allies in exchange for a fruit with the power of eternal rejuvination. “..oh, i bet its tasty fruit!” She clears her throat, “.. in all seriouslness I’ve dabbled in trying to forever avoid the appearance of wrinkles on my face, i thought this ingredient was impossible to ever find. And.. well, here we are, heh.. how enticing!” She scratched her golden head a bit, “I’d give up Nissa, but.. if i were to suggest it i’ll never hear her say something nice to me. Forever and ever.” She then shakes her head, and makes her way forward towards Cayde. (A,25)

Then reffering to the Ent she speaks her bit, “Excuse me! Hi! Looks like we need a few minutes please.”

If the others were to come together she’d whisper. “If no one volunteers..” She pulls out of the huddle to look at the Ent, and frowns nervously, “..I’ll volunteer. We need to get close. B-b-but.. only if no one else does. Okay?”
 
The Overgrown Marshes – Death's Roots
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Mentions: Baharius Develius Develius | Scylla RavenSong RavenSong | Cayde The Last Curse The Last Curse | Kesh Skyhunter Skyhunter | Clarice TheSimianMind TheSimianMind | Nissa saxon saxon

OOC: Greenish characters are currently entangled and will start losing 1 grade of vitality for each turn they remain entangled. If they're lowed to below H vitality, they'll pass out.
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Nissa was as lovely and uncontroversial in her rhetoric as always. Sadly (or perhaps luckily) enough, the Ent seemed to ignor her insults like nothing other than background noise.

Although Cayde was a little late for getting Kalina and Nissa out 'alive' in the most literal manner, his resolve to deceive the Ent paid off. The Ent watched him move closer without attacking. His Bestiary Bookworm gave him a few pointers, but not too much. This Ent seemed a bit different from the regular Ents, yet even the regular ones weren't common. However, it looked like the creature would suffer if put on fire, although it didn't look like it'd burn well on its own. In other words, once they'd get it burning, it'd do a lot, but it'd take more than just some fire arrows or torches to really get a fire going. It also looked like it was not the fastest, as it moved rather slow, but in turn, it was large enough to have a lot of weight and strength behind it, were it to try hitting them or stomping down on them. Most alarming, however, were vines that Cayde would notice going through the entire Ent, down onto the ground and from there, they seemed to spread out in various directions. It was possible that the main 'body' they saw wasn't all of the Ent.

Baharius stood his ground as intended.

Scylla moved towards where Cayde was previously, then called out to the Ent. The large creature didn't seem particularly eager to reply to her. As she suggested she'd volunteer, however, something happened..

Swamp Ent
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Cayde hadn't been the only one deceiving others. From the start, the Ent intended to take down all of them. After all, it was very clear they hadn't actually prepared someone to offer to him and they'd been discussing how to bring him down just moments ago. Although the Alchemist had sounded convincing, the others had not, so it'd proceeded with its original plan. It just needed to buy some time to get its roots in place to try catching them off guard. Although he noticed that some of them had their eyes on the tree-lines, where he'd been spreading his roots, only the man who'd moved forwards had moved a fair distance away from the trees he'd been hiding his roots in.

In an instant, the vines launched at all members of the group.
(>14 DC to save getting entangled, roll on Discord + speed.)

As the vines lashed out at Nissa, they reached her almost instantly as she was close to the treelines. However, she still managed to easily dodge them (17+1 (speed) = 18).

Kesh, being close to the same tree, was a lot less fortunate (4+1=5), as she was too late to react to the vines suddenly lashing out from being hidden among the tree's roots to dodge them. They quickly wrapped around her arms, chest and legs and would start to tighten almost instantly.

Baharius, being further off from the trees, had enough time to dodge them with ease (16+1=17).

Scylla, on the other hand, made it look even easier, as she instinctively an gracefully dodged the vines like a billionaire dodges taxes. (Natural 20).

The same couldn't be said for Abha, as the poor bunny got completely surprised (2 + ? =< 14). The sudden and full entanglement clearly caused her considerable stress, but not enough for her to turn. At least not yet.

The vines also lashed at Cayde. He'd been the most alert by far (early notice + bestiary bookworm) and was also a fair bit away from the tree. Sadly enough, in his attempt to dodge, he tripped and a single vine managed to wrap around his leg. (Partial entanglement, all the right actions made, yet critical fail on the roll.)

Clarice, meanwhile, suffered the same fate as Kesh and Abha. Caught relatively unaware, the vines quickly managed to wrap themselves around her legs, arms and torso and would soon start to tighten around her.

That left online Kalina, who'd been able to stealth off earlier after Scylla's suggestion to split up. Luckily enough, she'd managed to go unnoticed. On the other hand, she hadn't noticed the rest of her group getting attacked by vines yet, as she was completely focussed on staying out of sight of the Ent, as she made her way further to the north-east.

After the initial shock, two things were clear. The Ent wouldn't be able to launch his vines like that again immediately, as the vines that missed were laying on the ground without movement. Whatever he'd used either was 'up' or on 'cooldown' or something, but it was unclear for how long that would last. Secondarily, those entangled would feel their vitality being intruded upon. They weren't losing any of it at the moment, but it was clear that if they didn't get these things off immediately (in the next post), they'd start losing it until they'd pass out.

The Ent didn't seem to happy with the results, looking at how many of them were still free.
“Say your prayers, little alchemist.” The Ent said [Intimidate D] at Cayde, as he very slowly started to make his way towards Cayde. With vines still running from him towards the ground and into the other trees/shrubs, he was very slow, but he'd be there soon if Cayde wouldn't manage to get up again and get himself loose from the vines some. It was also pretty clear what the Ent intended to do; namely to stomp down upon Cayde with his full weight.

OOC: Quick reminder of the combat rules I'll stick with.

Three actions per post. (Attack, ability usage, move, lengthy speech, etc.)

A [move] action gives you up too 10 squares per action (moving 2 or less squares is free).

Using special items (like oil) along with an attack or ability counts as part of the same action (like dipping arrows in oil), but using them separately counts as a stand-alone action (like splashing the Ent with oil from a jar).

Also a quick note/hint: The entanglement vines can be cut or burned/torn off, but depending on the actions/tools used and the manner in which it is done, it may take up more than one action to complete. Those fully entangled (Abha, Kesh, Clarice) are least likely to get out on their own. If attempting to keep getting someone loose leads to a post having more than 3 actions, the last ones will be ignored, which can mean someone fails to entangle during the round and would have to continue trying in the next round.)
 
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Scylla had closed her eyes, as she began to speak her suggestion, with a lecturing finger mentioning she’d only volunteer if no one else did. Yet when she opened her eyes, most of the people she was speaking to were on the ground, wrapped totally or partially by strange vines.

Just as a billionaire evades taxes, (???) Scylla dodged the vines coming towards her, for an instant feeling like a politicians bratty daughter, pretending to sign some kind of crooked document. “Oops! Nice try, no way I'm paying THAT much, hah! It would be such a crime!!” She giggled. "I may just buy this entire forest, just look at all that lumber!" She shook her head, shutting her eyes tightly as this strange feeling dissipated. "Ok, what in Niv-Mizzet's name did I just say?" She mumbled, still a bit disoriented.

It seemed this Ent was no longer trying to make any negotiations, evidently clear as her eyes rested upon those that weren’t so lucky. “Oh dear..” She muttered. Dashing towards Abha, she examined the vines, “Alright.. its going to have to be fire.” She stated, “Hang on little bunny..” She said softly as she tried to pull the vines loose before channeling the elemental fire into her hands, effectively burning through the wrappings. [Action 1]

Then headed towards Kesh, “Uhm, might not have been the brightest plan miss mousey..” The witch would tug at the vines, then instead placed her hands on the vines surface. Considering the ratkin was nearly naked, she didnt want to risk burning her. Finally igniting the vines as well. [Action 2]

The witches face, clearly expressing impatience and worry, was tempted to join the fray, but instead dashed further back towards Clarice, igniting the vines on fire. “I.. well, dont mention it Collegue.” She said with a comforting look on her face.

“That was.. alot of vines..” She said out loud. She could only attempt to rally the others at this point, “I love trees! But this one must go! DESTROY IT!” She exclaimed as loud as she could.
 
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Develius

"Kaiju Enthusiast"

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Mentions:
| Elvario Elvario (Swamp Ent & Abha) | Skyhunter Skyhunter (Kesh) | The Last Curse The Last Curse (Cayde) | RavenSong RavenSong (Scylla) | TheSimianMind TheSimianMind (Clarice) | saxon saxon (Nissa)




The plan fell through, just as the saurian general expected. The ent was already well aware of their true intentions and proceeded to ensnare the party with his massive vines the lunged from the trees adjacent to them. Quickly noting the approaching tendrils, Baharius whipped his body away from them and snarled at the massive tree-figure. But while he and a couple others were able to dodge them, a good number would not. Cayde looked as if he was going to easily dodge out of the way with ease, but tripped at the last moment to allow a vine wrap around his ankle.

"Cayde!" Baharius roared as he readied his blade. Yet looking behind him, he'd also see Kesh, Abha, and Clarice ensnared in the Ent's clutches. Scylla would be the only one she'd see not entangled by this mess. There wasn't much time. Instinctually, the saurian's gaze struck the witch's with gritted determination. He was about to ask her to free the others, but she was already one step ahead of him. Nodding approvingly, the great beast turned towards Cayde's position and hauled himself to the frontlines with all of his might. The time for talk has passed; it was now time for immediate action.

Dragging his gargantuan blade alongside him, barely a few inches off the ground, Baharius turned the corner and sprinted towards the towering ent* with furious intent. Despite its immense size, dwarfing the spinosaurian by a very significant margin, the saurian general was not deterred. With adrenaline now pumping through his veins, after being denied a fight of something a great as this, his thirst for a real challenge was already at its apex. For the sake of his friends and his honor, he will not see himself lose to this vile monstrosity!

Getting closer, he took a moment to glance over and nod at the fallen Cayde, before focusing his attention back on the quarry at hand. Nearing striking range, Baharius grasped the oil jar with his spare hand and tossed it into the air. Its trajectory was more vertical in tone, seeming to lack much power or range to really make an effort to reach the ent. However, with surprising accuracy, the saurian reeled his blade back over his shoulder and attempted to hit the oil jar with a downward strike, attempting to cover his blade in fiery flames and cut through the Ent's rooty appendages on its way down with ease. He would then strike forth with a sweeping Broad Dune Swipe wanting to cut through his tough wooden hide like butter and to give the alchemist a chance to quickly free himself while he held the ent off.

"You should've answered the paladin's question, parasite!" Baharius roared in a more gravelly and hardened tone as he continued with his ferocious onslaught.


  • Broad Dune Swipe - [Fighting Style E, Area F] - [E] - COOLDOWN +1 - Baharius sweeps blade around body in a wide circle 10ft wide.
*(G,17)
 
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The Last Curse

21% Delirious

Cayde was glad his lie had managed to work, though not so much when the ent's happened to work, too. Fortunately, he was quick enough to spot the monster's tendrils emerging from the tree closest to him, but that's where his luck had out. Before he could dodge, Cayde felt himself tumble to the ground, a rouge vine wrapping itself around his leg. His heart flushed with fear, and the ent's foreboding words didn't help to ease him either, kickstarting his fight-or-flight response. Flight seemed to be the most rational option, so he unsheathed his knife, attempted to create tension by pulling his tangled leg to him, and began cutting through the long end of the tendril as one would do to rope, using [Steady Hands] to keep himself steady and his shakiness in check. However, that hadn't stopped the concerning thoughts from creeping in, Cayde starting to worry if the others had also been ensnared.

Thankfully, Baharius was not one of them. Cayde felt a surge of relief wash over him at the sight of the towering lizardman, though that did not stop his attempt to free himself. "Baharius! Thank God!" He exclaimed, his eyes still occupied with the vine, "The trees! We've gotta get away from the trees!" His observations had led him to believe the ent had some control of the local plants via those vines. If they stayed here, surrounded by trees, there'd only be more tendrils coming to get them. He needed to move to some more open ground, and assuming he'd freed himself, Cayde was already scrounging through his pack, throwing together and utilizing his [Rogue's Remedy]. A potion made to emulate his apprentice's invisibility, and hopefully, the only way to get him around the ent undetected.

Watching himself go invisible was always an interesting experience, and so was the tingly feeling as he felt the beverage course through him, hastening his already adrenaline-pumped system. Nevertheless, he waited for after Baharius' swipe to make his move, skirting around him and the ent and sprinting some distance away [L - 12]. Mentally praising Kesh for the recipe, he'd also try to keep an eye out for Kate. While he wasn't sure where she was right now, he thought maybe they could divert attention away from the group. It would give them some much-needed wiggle room and, he hoped, some much-needed torching room too.

  • Rogue's Remedy - Alchemy D, Nature D, Undetected F, Survival E, Medicine D, Deception F, Bolster [Speed] F, Gear F- Cayde creates a sweet-tasting beverage that temporarily turns whoever drinks it invisible. In addition, it also provides a +1 buff to speed for one post. - Grade D - 2 post Cooldown
 

saxon

Member
Nissa
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Nissa ignored the witches comment as she didn't really care what their opinions were at the matter. There were more important things to do in the matter. Nissa looked up as the vines lashed out towards her jumping back out of the way she quickly moved away from the trees moving to B24.

She was really ready to cut down this tree now that it seemed like it was going to attack them. At this point she was going to stand back and see how the ent was going to fight. She didn't want to go in blind and she didn't mind staying back and watch the others fight.

mentions:
Elvario Elvario RavenSong RavenSong The Last Curse The Last Curse Skyhunter Skyhunter TheSimianMind TheSimianMind Develius Develius
 

Skyhunter

Entity of Change
Kesh

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The Ratkin probably shouldn't have taken the dust she just inhaled, she wouldn't be able to move out of the vines in time as she would be ensnared in wrapped vines all over her body, " Hey! " Kesh came back to, " I don't like where these vines are trying to touch me at! " She complained trying to get out of the clutches. Kesh ended up dropping her makeshift crossbow as she would need her hands and claws to get out of this. Using her slender body to try and muster herself free, Kesh was able to use her Ratkin abilities to get out of the trap she was in [Acrobatics E]. Able to get her arm free of the crushing vines, Kesh was able to use her claws to start slashing through the vines that had trapped her. Kesh was a bit scared of what was happening with this large tree coming for them. It was going for Cayde and Kesh was worried for the alchemist. Kesh was able to finally get the vines off her as she had vine juices all over her claws. The Ratkin looked behind her and saw that both Clarice and Abha were also ensnared by the vines.

Kesh bit her lip, trying to figure out what she should do next. Kesh heard Baharius run after Cayde with his large body moving and the swamp water splashing around. Kesh picked up her makeshift crossbow looking a bit scared and unsure of what she should do. Kesh looked at Abha and saw she was close enough to move and free her before the Ent did anything, Kesh looked at Abha and quickly moved towards the rabbit paladin (B, 27.) The Ratkin moved to her side and smiled nervously, " Hi, rabbit! " Kesh petted the rabbit quickly to try and calm her own nerves, " Soft-cushiony... " Kesh then began clawing her way through the vines of the rabbit to help Abha escape. " I help-assist! " Kesh said as he was doing his best to free Abha, thinking the rabbit would be the best one to free at the moment. Once Abha was free, Kesh turned to look at the tree, gulping deeply as she held her makeshift crossbow, " Master Clyde.... Please be safe-unhurt... " Kesh was a nervous wreck, she was scared, way over her head. " Rabbit-bunny what can we do? " Kesh asked Abha.

Actions: 1. Acrobatics E to get untangled, 2. used Claws F to free herself of vines, moved to B,27 (free because it's two steps) 3. helped free Abha with her claws.
 
The Overgrown Marshes – Death's Roots
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Mentions: Baharius Develius Develius | Scylla RavenSong RavenSong | Cayde The Last Curse The Last Curse | Kesh Skyhunter Skyhunter | Clarice TheSimianMind TheSimianMind | Nissa saxon saxon

OOC: Greenish characters are currently entangled and will start losing 1 grade of vitality for each turn they remain entangled. If they're lowed to below H vitality, they'll pass out.
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Scylla decided not to risk burning her allies by sending fire-bolts trying to get rid of the vines, but instead burned through them using a touched-based fire attack. (First usage would be an E ability, Magic E + Fire Affinity F + Energised E – 0 Cooldown.) Thanks to her magic power, she was able to burn through the vines tying up Abha before they could drain the bunny's vitality.

She then made it over to Kesh, where she was able to free the ratkin with a less powerful version, as the Kesh had already partially freed herself and only needed to be burned free of the remaining vines. (Magic F + Fire Affinity F + Energised E – 0 Cooldown – 2 usages per post.)

Having freed the two, Scylla would spent of the rest of her time on reaching Clarice (move action).

Baharius made his way in front of the Ent, where he used one of the containers of oil to coat his weapon in oil by slashing through with with a downwards strike that continued its path into the leg Ent, as the Ent got his leg intercepted by the oiled-up sword before it could stomp down onto Cayde. Thanks the the Saurian's strength, the blade managed to penetrate fairly deep into the leg, although the withering mass of vines, branches and occasional rotting corpse didn't seem particularly hurt by it. However, a considerable amount of oil was left behind in the wound, ready for ignition... Currently 4/5 containers of oil are left, 1 with Kalina, 3 with Clarice. His follow-up Broad Dune Swipe managed to do even more more damage, to the leg, yet not enough to cut it off. Worse, however, was that Baharius could see that some of the leg was starting to grow back together short after his slash. The attacks did successfully prevent the Ent from going after Cayde.

Cayde, meanwhile, managed to keep his hands steady despite being intimidated. Thanks to Baharius buying him time, he was able to cut through the vine that was wrapped around his legs. Also, as it was only a single vine, it wouldn't take him long (single action). It left him with enough time to quickly consume his Rogue's Remedy and run off. The hill in front of him was climbable, but it took him a bit more effort and made it so he didn't get quite as far as he'd hoped to get, even with the added speed. Luckily enough, the Ent had been too preoccupied and hadn't spotted him thanks to the potion.

Nissa moved a bit closer, but didn't bother trying to help out any of the still entangled folk (just Clarice by now). She didn't bother to attack the Ent either, for better or worse.

Kesh, able to contort her body a fair bit, had already loosed the vines and freed one hand. Thanks to Scylla burning off the rest, she was able to get out with a single action and before her vitality would suffer from the vines. She rushed off towards Abha and for some reason, the proud paladin melted like butter upon being pet by the ratkin, as her stress levels decreased considerably. Kesh asked what to do, which was a good question. Abha herself wasn't too sure.

Chandra Jarmil

Kalina, meanwhile, noticed that the Ent had gone on the attack. She wasn't sure what was going on on the other side of the trees, but it definitely didn't look good. She was about to
attack when she heard Cayde yell to get away from the trees. Although she didn't know why exactly, she decided to take his advise to heart. Taking 2 movement actions, she managed to sneak around the trees in front of her and move towards a more open area. Considering she was going past the Ent fairly closely, it was pretty darn terrifying even at her level of stealth. Luckily, the creature was preoccupied by Baharius.

That said, where she arrived, it was very difficult to utilise stealth in the relatively open terrain, so she wasn't sure how long her stealth would hold. It's why she decided to set-up for attacking, now that the Ent's attention wasn't on her, using her third action to put down the jar of oil, and to plant at torch in the ground besides her and ignite it. The plan was simple, as she was hoping to start dipping arrows in oil and to ignite them in the burning torch before firing them at the Ent. That said, the sneaking around and properly setting up had taken her more time than she'd like to admit.

Abha Roshan
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“It seems really large and tough, so if we want to have any chance of defeating it, we should use every bit of oil that we've got wisely... Perhaps we could get even more oil even deeper inside of him? Open a wound and poor it in. If it burns from within, it should be hurt severely, if not outright killed.” That said, the task was a bit much to ask of anyone here. She herself didn't know how to defeat the giant tree monster either.

On the other hand, did see a way to help out. Baharius was currently facing off against the Ent alone and didn't look like he'd stand a chance for long, so Abha quickly chanted a few words, as a light started to form around her hand. She stopped her chanting and shot a bolt of light at Baharius. Upon impact, he'd feel his strength and vitality increase by a fair bit (both to B grade for the next 2 posts). However, after casting, the rabbit starting coughing heavily. “Ugh... I'm not sure why, but casting magic takes an even larger toll on me than usual.” Perhaps it'd been the stress keeping her werehare form at the surface, the fact that she'd nearly died or the fact that she'd been in this cursed swamp for long, but she wasn't able to do much for the time being.

Clarice, being the only one that wasn't able to escape the vines or be freed, would feel her vitality decrease (F to G) as the vines started to drain her.

Swamp Ent
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The Ent itself, was properly enraged when Baharius intercepting him from being able to finish off Cayde. The Saurian's words only further enraged him. “Very well, then let these roots taste your corpse before the alchemist's.” The Ent knew the alchemist was dangerous to let roam, but he'd lost him out of his sight for some reason. As frustrating as it was, he chose to focus on the target in front of him instead.

[Action 1] First, he brought down his leg. Although it was wounded by Baharius' earlier attacks, he was still able to push down with it, as he hoped to squash Baharius like he first intended to do with Cayde. (B-grade physical blunt attack from above.) However, he noticed the others were getting rid of the vines that had enwrapped them with far too much ease.

[Action 2] Luckily enough, they were all standing relatively closely together. If it had a mouth, it would display a wicked grin as he threw what looked to be some sort of bulb towards the group, aimed to land upon the Rabbit in particular. It would come down at them in an arch and it was clear that whatever that was, they likely wouldn't want to wait and find out.

[Action 3] Finally, it noticed a torch flare up somewhere behind it from its peripherals. Although it wasn't sure who or what it was, it decided to prepare in advance, using his third action to grow a thicker layer of bark on his back to provide him extra protection.
 

TheSimianMind

New Member
[Through grit teeth and with a pained expression.] I'm gonna chop you open and pour your innards on my pancakes, you sorry son of a birch!

Sure enough, sapping Clarice's vitality seems to have snapped her out of her ill-timed reverie. Despite her foul mood, she doesn't waste her time or energy lambasting her party members or thrashing futilely against the vines that have ensnared her. Instead...

[Action 1: Clarice uses Investigation (F), Telekinesis (F), and Magic Range (F) to loot gear from the corpses.]

[Action 2: Clarice uses Mind Control (F) on herself to access her
hysterical strength.]

[Action 3: Clarice attacks the vines with the looted gear or her (ungraded) knife.]


Yeah, Clarice really can't do much until she gets rid of the vines grappling her (and until the combat rework is made official, she lacks direct offensive capabilities). Nevertheless, she doesn't deem her situation dire enough to use an oil pot to free herself - though it would save her two Actions. Given that there are three healers in the group that are adept at treating physical damage, her physical condition isn't the limiting resource here: the availability of incendiary weaponry is.

But maybe...

I have a plan, but it will only work if we come together as a team. We need to hit this thing hard at the same time from multiple angles. Baharius and Nissa could escort Scylla and Abha into range while Cayde and Kesh flank. I'll see if I can scrounge up any reinforcements from outside of this thing's range. I could use a bit of healing, but I'll manage without if you can move into position right now.

Scrapes and bruises serve as physical indicators of Clarice's decreased vitality, though it isn't immediately clear why such wounds exist.

Focus on slashing attacks. Strip the bark away - it doesn't burn as well. The Ent is cumbersome and heavy - it should have difficulty traversing muddy areas. Use its weight against it. Strike low, topple it, and gravity will do work. Once it's down, hack into its center of mass and light up its interior.

If you can deliver my kit to Cayde, you might convince him to upgrade it. I bet he has the components.

On a similar note, if any of you can think of a use for the gem we found yesterday, take it. It isn't doing me any good right now and necromancy isn't my strong suit.

And if you can stay clear of any reinforcements I send, do it. You know why.
 
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Develius

"Kaiju Enthusiast"

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Buff: [Bunny Buff] (Strength B and Vitality B) - [2 Posts]

Mentions:
| Elvario Elvario (Swamp Ent & Abha) | Skyhunter Skyhunter (Kesh) | The Last Curse The Last Curse (Cayde) | RavenSong RavenSong (Scylla) | TheSimianMind TheSimianMind (Clarice) | saxon saxon (Nissa)




Baharius felt a rush of excitement as he watched his massive blade pierce deep into the ent's wooden exterior with burning oil seeping deep into the cut. He'd hear Cayde behind him, thanking his intervention, as it gave the alchemist enough time to break free and retreat. Yet while the saurian would fail in cutting straight through the tree-creature's limb, his blade would unfortunately not catch on fire. His mild disappointment would sully further as he noticed the ent attempting to regenerate and heal the damage through the rapid binding of its fibers. While not entirely unexpected, Baharius knew he'd have to focus his efforts quickly on severing these limbs before they can fully regenerate. And the more oil thrown upon it, the more susceptible it will be to proper fire damage.

For now, the saurian had to face the giant sentient tree as the rest attempted to formulate last-second plans. He had to admit, in the state he was in now, he wasn't going to last super long against this massive mound of wood and root by his lonesome. And so, as the ent roared at Baharius' challenging statement, he would move his massive leg in an attempt to squash him. And so its foot descended and made contact with the scaly general's hide, no doubt expecting to feel the satisfying feeling of red-paste underneath its rooted toes if not hear the cracking of saurian bones.

However, the ent wouldn't feel this satisfaction. For just moments before, the saurian would feel something penetrate his backside followed by a surge of overpowering might of the likes he'd never felt before. His body burned with bouncing adrenaline, sparking about through his large muscles and coursing through his blood. This was a good burn; a VERY good burn in fact. While he didn't feel like a god, he certainly felt much more capably determined to allow himself a fighting chance. And so, moments before the ent's foot would impact his scaly form, the Saurian issued a bellowing roar before plunging his great-sword straight up the creature's foot with as much might as he could muster. It wasn't so much as to cause significant damage as it was to ward impending doom from collapsing onto him.

And Baharius certainly wasn't going to let this newfound strength and vigor go to waste.

Using this momentary opening to his advantage, Baharius' powerful tail would smash against the ground (adding [Superstrength F]) and have the saurian leap and climb upon the ent's gnarled leg, digging his hooked-claws in with considerable grip. Within that same timeframe, he attempts to maneuver his way towards the giant tree's behind in a sweeping motion before plunging his jagged blade deep into the beast's backside and starting sawing into him with quick powerful thrusts. He was going to be a massive thorn in this tree-man's back, hopefully allowing just enough time and distraction to have his party go with whatever plans they have up their sleeves.
 

The Last Curse

21% Delirious
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Mentions: Elvario Elvario Develius Develius

Climbing up the hill was more strenuous than Cayde expected, though he still managed to distance himself and the ent. With the potion's effects subsiding and the prospect of a gruesome death still not too distant, Cayde figured it was a great time to start making preparations. In the distance, he saw that Kate was already starting hers and offered her a casual wave. He realized it was a useless gesture, but it was nice to see she hadn't gotten tangled up in those vines. But he would if he kept dilly-dallying, so Cayde went to work, igniting a torch of his own, flasks of the alcohol-mixed kerosene clinking listlessly on his side. The sound brought his attention to them, and an idea immediately popped into his head.

He'd only glazed past it in entry-level alchemy journals and only seen it in action during Ryken's numerous barfights, but there was a recipe he could make with these. An improvised 'potion' that'd surely help against a giant, flammable tree. If it worked, that is, Cayde wasn't sure if he could rely on the ingenuity of a drunkard. "Well, better now than never," He thought, soaking a cloth in alcohol and sealing it into the neck of the flask. The end-product was crude compared to his usual crafts, but hopefully, it'd be enough to get a good fire going.

But not with Baharius hacking into the ent. And especially not with that extra layer of wood covering it up. He'd have to get into a better position in the meantime. So, with the torch in hand, Cayde did, taking a few cautious steps north. (G-13). Although the nearest trees were some distance away, Cayde kept an eye out for creeping vines from them or the ent. [Perception]. It was already terrifying enough to get a leg caught in one; his whole body would be a nightmare he wasn't even sure his knife could fix.
 

saxon

Member
Nissa
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Nissa watched as the party continued to fight the ent, These idiots really don't know what they are dealing with do they. The stupid lizard is charging in asking for death. She thought to herself as she turned around to see Clarice was starting to chop the vines away from her finally. Nissa still wasn't sure if she was going to get involved in this fight or not, to be fair she figured the weakened party would just disband upon the killing of the ent. On top of that she didn't want to tire herself out either.

Clicking her tongue in annoyance at the length of the fight she opened her the top of her pack and drew her sword before moving forward toward the tree. (G-19) At this point she figured she would assist the part seeing as they seemed to need help.
"The fact the giant lizard hasn't crushed this Ent yet is embarrassing I suppose I shall aid you," She spoke as she went to use Draining strike on the Ent. To be fair she wasn't even sure why she was helping nor was she really caring about the orders and suggestions the Alchemist was giving.



  • Draining Strike - Fighting Style Nightblade F, Drain F - Nissa delivers a strike that saps the target's strength by 1 grade for a single post. - Grade F - 0 Post Cooldown


mentions:
Elvario Elvario RavenSong RavenSong The Last Curse The Last Curse Skyhunter Skyhunter TheSimianMind TheSimianMind Develius Develius
 
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Scylla ran towards Clarice, panting, she finally arrived to her side, although a bit late as upon a closer look realized the vines had cast some kind of affliction upon her.

“Clarice! Hang in there, let me just..” the witch would tug on the vines just as she did with the previous two, and channeling the elemental fire affinity into her hands. [Magic D- Fire Affinity F - Energised E – 0 Cooldown] [Action 1]

Once loose, she’d do her best to clean her up, and get her to stand. “How do you feel?” She asked concerned, obviously noticing the effects of whatever the vines had put her through. “I’m sorry, I was so slow!” She rolled her eyes annoyed, before she noticed the ground shake a bit from the massive ents stomping. “Uhm, maybe you should wait here Clarice. I’ll see what I can do up ahead.”
Dashing forward she came within range of the ent. [Action 2]

Wincing as the tree creature roared and made battle with Baharius. “Here we go!” She exclaimed confidently as the witch channeled her fiery magic, igniting her staff in elemental flames. “Fire arrows!” She muttered, before glowing fiery arrows made themselves manifest, launching all five of them at the Ent folk, focused straight under its head at the upper chest area. [Action 3]
 
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The Overgrown Marshes – Death's Roots
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Mentions: Baharius Develius Develius | Scylla RavenSong RavenSong | Cayde The Last Curse The Last Curse | Kesh Skyhunter Skyhunter | Clarice TheSimianMind TheSimianMind | Nissa saxon saxon

Seems like I should've been more clear that standard ability grade cooldowns as per general IH rules apply. Please keep track of those.

OOC: Greenish characters (Scylla exempted) are currently entangled and will start losing 1 grade of vitality for each turn they remain entangled. If they're lowed to below H vitality, they'll pass out.
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(OOC:Unless the rules changed, Clarice would also need Magic E to use Magic Range F, as it is an augmenter to abilities using Magic. It'd also ensure she doesn't use two F grade abilities in one turn without energised, as Mind Control counts for F Grade ability CD's.) With some effort and a touch of telekinesis, Clarice managed to draw in the blade of a broken-off sword. It was a bit rusted, but part of it was still sharp (F grade blade). Although the hysterical strength didn't actually buff her strength up like [bolster strength] would, it did cause a whole lot of adrenaline to rush through her veins and act as if her life was at stake. The latter aided her in ignoring any pain and discomforted she received from holding the blade in bare hands and struggling against the veins until she started to manage cutting them more and more loose. She didn't manage to finish off cutting them altogether, but she did regain enough movability to cut the last bits off (in a single action in the next turn) soon enough. As she was doing so, she managed to state her plans and ideas. It didn't take long before Scylla arrived to burn the last remnants of vines off of her with ease, thanks to Clarice being mostly free already (E ability, energised, 0 post CD).

Baharius, meanwhile, was fighting directly on the front-lines. Backed with some extra strength, the Saurian's sword would enter the incoming foot deeply, enough to split it into two parts, one crashing down on either side of him. With effort, the Ent managed to remain standing, but it was clearly hurt a fair bit. Whilst Baharius got some scraps and bruises in the process, it was nothing serious and far from being squashed altogether (F grade superficial wounds, primary along his arms). Although Baharius did not particularly excel at any mobility skills, the Ent was large enough and with enough vines for holding-onto for Baharius for him to climb along and towards his back. However, he'd encounter the very bark the Ent grew to protect itself against attacks from behind only moments ago. Whilst Baharius, with his newfound strength, was able to strip away a large chunk of that bark, even his newfound strength wasn't enough to penetrate straight through it and into the inner vines themselves.

As Cayde prepared his molotovs and got into position, his perceptive eyes would spot something far more intriguing than just the vines. The vines were actively piercing into corpses and reducing them in size, as if using them as fertiliser. Were he to follow them along towards the Ent, he'd see them run into the Ent's leg, which started to already regenerate from the damage Baharius had done to it. From there, the alchemist would like be capable of putting two and two together, having spotted one of their opponent's most dangerous strengths.

Nissa, deciding she'd had enough of just watching the show, decided to face the Ent. With the Ent preoccupied by Baharius, it was a relatively easy task for her to stab him with a Draining Strike. The Ent would immediately feel part of its strength drained, unable to use it to its fullest (1 post strength debuff = this post's counterattacks).

Scylla was quick to use her fire magic to burn free Clarice, but her advice to stay there was considerably dangerous. The bulb heading for them went ignored, as she instead chose to fire at the Ent (D ability, energised, 1 post CD) and with results. The Ents face caught flame as the fire-bolts hit him, eating away a fair bit into the vines and even reaching some of the corpses rotting away between those. It was clear that Scylla was the most valuable fighter in a battle against this creature.

That said... nobody managed or cared to stop the odd bulb the Ent had thrown from flying straight at the bunny and those around her. It'd impact the ground soon enough.

Abha Roshan
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Without a weapon, Abha had no clue how to defend her allies or herself from the incoming danger. “Watch out!” She yelled, as she tried to get away and attempted to push the nearest person (Kesh) out of harm's way while at it. That bulb clearly wasn't meant to just bonk her on the head, after all. In turn, she got hit in the back by the full brunt of the bulb's true purpose... The moment the bulb landed where Abha stood previously, thorns shot out in a (purple) area around it. Kesh managed to be pushed out of range, but Abha's back got pierced by a full load of them. Oddly enough, having seen it coming, she at least didn't receive too much stress from it. However, her back was pierced severely by the many thorns (C grade injury) and wouldn't easily regenerate.

The same thorns made their way to Scylla and Clarice, although with the way they were standing now, Clarice would be mostly shielded by Scylla. The latter had turned around to fire at the Ent, only to see the bulb land and the thorns shoot out. Having ignored or missed the bulb, having Clarice directly behind her and having just used her fire magic to attack, she was out of options to effectively defend herself. The thorns would shred into her entire body, ripping holes in her clothes and causing her to bleed from multiple wounds. The only benefit was that she was a little more on the outskirts of the impact area compared to Abha, but she'd still suffer considerable (D grade injury) pain from the thorns ripping through her flesh. With Clarice standing almost entirely behind her, she'd only be injured by a few stray thorns that made their way past Scylla (E injury), which only injured her in a somewhat considerable degree due to her reduced vitality.

Chandra Jarmil

Kalina, on the other hand, had been awaiting an opportunity. Baharius prevented the perfect one. As the Saurian tore away the bark that protected the Ent's backside, she quick dipped her bolts in oil, lit them and carefully aimed. She trusted herself to be a good enough shot to hit past her ally, but even so... “Don't climb up further!” She yelled at Baharius, to ensure he wouldn't get into her line of sight, as she saw him slide down a bit after tearing down the Ent's bark-armour. [Action 1] As was her MO, she fired her strongest shot first. Considering the Ent hadn't turned around, she knew she could hit it hard; and so she did. The bolt managed to pierce through the vines, along the torn-off armour and into the Ent, where it start to make some of the vines around it smoulder. [Action 2] The next bolt was slightly less powerful, but all the more accurate and dangerous, as she used her Precision Strikes to land the best hit. This too, penetrated deep into the Ent and further made him smoulder. For her final attack, she decided to take a big risk. Although Baharius was still on the Ent, he wasn't that close to the Ent's leg, so she shot at the Ent's leg, particularly where he'd wounded the Ent with an oiled-up blade previously. The effect was immediately, as the oil was set ablaze and burned away at the Ent's leg before it could regenerate, causing the giant to start falling...

B Grade Cooldowns: (0/4)
  • Sneak Attack: – Appraisal D, Darkvision F, Stealth B, Concealment F – Character uses their stealth and concealment to stay hidden while using their appraisal and darkvision to find the best moment of opportunity to suddenly strike at a target from the shadows, making it much more difficult to dodge or counter the attack. - Grade B – 4 Post Cooldown.
D Grade Cooldowns: (0/2)
  • Precision Strike: – Fighting Style [Precision Strikes] D, Accurate F, Penetrating F, Range F – Character strikes at a target accurately and with the full force of the fighting style. [Accurate] - the technique makes it so the target's speed is treated as though it were reduced by 1 letter grade. [Penetrating] - weapon can ignore armours of similar or lesser grades and still hurt target. [Range] F Range - gives weapon attacks longer range. 10 feet / 3 meter at rank F. Required technique to apply fighting style effects at ranges beyond 5ft. - Grade D – 2 Post Cooldown.
F Grade Cooldowns: (0/0)
  • Well-aimed Strike: – Fighting Style [Precision Strikes] F, Accurate F – Character focusses on cleanly hitting their target. [Accurate] - the technique makes it so the target's speed is treated as though it were reduced by 1 letter grade. - Grade F – 0 Post Cooldown.

Things were looking very bad for the Ent, as he was now burning severely in two places and a little in one. His head was burning from Scylla's fire-bolts, his leg from Bahariu's oil and Kalina's last bolt and his chest from her earlier two bolts. It knew it was in trouble if something didn't change soon, especially as as it started falling due to missing the support of one of his legs...

That's when an unexpected ally arrived for the Ent, as a blast of water hit him in the face and managed to put out the fire caused by Scylla. A blast of water to his leg followed. Once they'd look in the direction of the bolts, they'd see the origin.

Nixie
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“I'll teach you to mess with my spells and steal my crystal! Go kill them!” The tiny creature called out to the Ent.

Swamp Ent
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The Ent didn't have to be told that twice, as it used his first action to get up again and compose himself, whilst shaking off and shoving away Baharius. Thanks to the fire no longer burning, his leg was already regenerating again, enough so to stand upon, albeit unsteady. That said, Cayde would notice the amount of corpses in the shrubs and even in the Ent itself had shrunk considerably. Kesh would notice the scent of death was decreasing rapidly as well. It wouldn't be able to keep this regeneration up for long.

The Ent knew that as well, so he wanted to take care of the most dangerous opponents first. He'd be too slow to get to Scylla by foot, so instead, he threw another bulb at her. This one was a lot smaller than the first, although it had thorns on the outside that'd likely hurt a lot if they'd hit her. It wasn't thrown in an arch like the first, but instead in a more direct path towards Scylla, like a baseball from a pitcher. Scylla (or those between Scylla and the Ent that'd try to defend her) would still have time to react, dodge or defend (or come up with another manner), but she'd have to think and act on it quickly, as this next attack might knock her out due to her earlier injuries.

For his third action, he turned around and headed towards his second source of concern; Kalina. However, Baharius was still between them. Ignoring the rest, the Ent tried to garner some speed, hoping to crash into Baharius to bring down the smaller creature and reach Kalina.

That said, the party wasn't over yet, as an arrow suddenly flew narrowly passed the recently arrived Nixie. “Focus on the Ent, I'll handle this one!” The recently arrived Scylla called out. Whatever their intention was, they seemed to be on the same side? It wasn't entirely clear, but with that final member here, the full crew had shown up to settle scores, new or old.
 

Develius

"Kaiju Enthusiast"

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Buff: [Bunny Buff] (Strength B and Vitality B) - [1 Posts]

Injuries: Superficial Wounds (Arms) [F-Grade]

Mentions:
| Elvario Elvario (Swamp Ent & Abha) | Skyhunter Skyhunter (Kesh) | The Last Curse The Last Curse (Cayde) | RavenSong RavenSong (Scylla) | TheSimianMind TheSimianMind (Clarice) | saxon saxon (Nissa)




Even with his increased strength in sawing down the tree like a lumberjack, Baharius would find that even with his enhanced strength, it would only help in tearing away a chunk of bark from the ent's hide. Still, he wasn't able to completely pierce straight through the creature's body and down to its fibers and cause greater damage. His body continued tensing as he continued desperately to hack away, while still trying to hold on for dear life with his spare hand. "Why... won't... you... just... TIMBER?!" Baharius growled in line with the beat of his brutal hacking. Just what was it going to take to completely take this big tree-thing down? He felt like he needed to reach the thing's head, hopefully still having his buff to try and decapitate the ent.

As the saurian began slowly climbing up the beast's back, using his blade as a makeshift pick, he'd suddenly hear Chandra from afar telling him to cease from climbing further up. Sounded like she had a plan. Baharius glanced back roughly in her direction and nodded, even as his immense weight against his blade jerked him downwards just a bit. "Do it!" the beast roared urgently, not even caring if he was going to be caught in the crossfire. So long as it damaged the tree, he would fully understand. Kalina's would fire accurately twice upon the ent's exposed armor, ripping into its fibril insides and causing him to smolder. It seemed to be working!

The final strike would hit the leg where Baharius' oil was applied, quickly catching fire and burning away at the limb. The saurian was wrenched sideways, with the trunk-like leg now beginning to give way, causing the ent to lean dangerously to one side. The saurian even noticed the ent's face now catching fire, no doubt coming from Scylla's efforts from just the other side. He hoped they've been doing their best as well, the end was just in sight! Just a bit more and the creature would be down and immobilized!

But when Baharius heard a brush of steam putting out the flame, followed by a bit of mist trickling down his snout, his heart sank. Someone was trying to put out the fire! And with it all of their efforts are now literally going up in smoke. The saurian growled as he began searching around for the possible culprit, before hearing an unknown feminine voice call out to the ent. The voice seemed new, but Baharius instantly picked up on its "haughty" attitude; connecting it to the shaman they failed to kill yesterday. And the fact it utilized water abilities? He wondered if this the same thing that caused his mouth to explode? The saurian gritted his teeth. The coincidences were certainly there, but it was something Baharius wouldn't have time to contemplate further, as he felt rocked against the ent's shaking body.

The force was enough to shove the saurian general off the ent's body, causing him to slide into the mud with sword in grasp. Baharius spat the damp mud from his mouth and shook his head as he rose back up to his clawed feet. He could still feel Abha's buff coursing through him, wanting to channel a violent release, but it was feeling like it could deplete at any moment. There wasn't much time now; he had to make this count. As the saurian eyed the ent, now turning towards both Chandra and his directions, he gave a glance back at the woman with a determined look.

"I hope you aren't finished yet!" Baharius called out in quick, raspy breaths. His voice could be easily heard from where Cayde was as well, "Give it your all! No need to wait for me to get out of the way; I'll hold him in place."

The ent was now beginning to charge towards their location, its sights fixed on Chandra. The saurian snorted as he extended his great-sword to his side and at the ready.

"I can take it."

And with that, utilizing all of his available strength and channeling the buff through his entire body, Baharius would start sprinting towards the great tree ent. He ran for as fast as his legs could carry him; gripping onto his sword as hard as his knuckles could; and gazing into the beast as focused to not even blink. He was going in for the decisive blow and he knew exactly where he'd hit. He focused on the heavily damaged leg and using all of his available might [+ Super Strength F], he lifted his blade as far he could and attempted to Broad Dune Swipe the weakened leg to topple this tree down. Lastly, he'd attempt to stab straight into the ent's chest with a Lunging Pierce, doing everything in his physical capabilities to halt it in his tracks; even extending his open arm out - scratched up as it was from earlier - as if he was pushing against it.

And with a deep breath, Baharius attempted to call everyone to arms, almost as if echoing across the entire marsh itself, and gave a single order to all who'd hear.

"NOW! HIT IT WITH EVERYTHING YOU GOT!"

He didn't even notice the imposter Scylla arrive to take care of the tiny water creature he pondered briefly about~
 

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