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Without further ado, allow me to introduce myself properly: my name is Featherstone (he/him), but most folks call me Fea (as in the first syllable of "feather," not to be mistaken as "fae," which are not the sort I would dare take the name of lest I cause offense). I consider myself an advanced literate roleplayer, typically writing somewhere between 500-1500 words, but sometimes dropping as low as 150 or as high as 3k depending on where my partner is at and what they doth require, prefer, or otherwise request! As a general rule, I will write no less than a paragraph shorter from what you posted--typically I mirror entirely, but ah, such things are unfortunately fickle, depending on the state of the character, the situation, et cetera.
Aside from this, one may always count on me to come through on OOC chatter! Send me a raven and I shall reply in a prompt manner, and if I do not, then my raven has merely gotten lost and I require naught but a second communication to inform me of this mix-up so that I may remedy it. I typically write a single main character with a rich cast of side characters, but I've dabbled in doubling and am certainly open to such things. I've even delved into doubling partway through an rp because a couple of the side characters vibed quite excellently. I tend to be a rather flexible fellow, willing to plot in detail or fly by the seat of my pants, always perched upon the edge of my finely carved cherry-wood chair and poised at my writing desk with inkwell in hand in anticipation of unseen character developments and plot twists. Also, in case this style of monologue hasn't tipped you off already, I am most accustomed to fantasy, be it modern, medieval, or (dare I say it!) historical (but not much and not very well so bear with me if we do something like that).
To avoid making this positively interminable, I shall conclude with a few bullet points as far as what you can count on from me:
* Typically daily posts, often more than one; generally no more than a week between posts, with few exceptions
* Pacific Standard Timezone
* Very LGBTQ+ friendly
* 500-1500 word replies on average, and a willingness to use the edit button if you need more to work with or I missed something
* Avid world/lore-building
* OOC chatter
* Original characters & worlds & things, I don't really do fandom at all :/
* Really bad puns and sometimes being really extra
* Random bird facts and pet pictures
* Male, female, and enby characters, tho rn most of my muse preferences are male
* Any pairing, including platonic
* Smatterings of mediocre BBCode and maybe even (genuinely) bad sketches
* Probably a fair amount of hat tipping
* Dark & mature themes, but not with pointlessly excessive explicitness
Although I venture to be flexible, my muse has been unfortunately rather picky lately and there are some things I'm simply unwilling to flex on (without very good reason; if everything clicks with you and just one or two rules are off, feel free to message me anyways and we can talk!) Overall, however, here is what I expect from you:
* ~200 words per post minimum (sometimes things are short because of dialogue and the like, I understand that, I just mean in general); 400-500+ is preferred
* On-site roleplay
* Active OOC discussion, plotting, and chatter
* At least multiple posts a week (in general); daily/rapid-fire on a regular basis is preferred
* I don't ask age; however, I expect a preparedness & maturity for dark themes and to be told of any trigger warnings prior to starting the roleplay
* LGBTQ+ friendly (even if you don't personally write characters that aren't cis/het)
* Inquire through PM; please tell me which plot and at least one idea you have for it upon your inquiry.
* RPs through PM
* OOC through Discord
* Making friends in OOC and not just writing partners
* Willingness to double and/or have a rich cast of side characters
* Collaborative worldbuilding
* Characters with a vulnerable/kind/sweet side, too (all fine with macho charries and stuff, but I'd like to have a softer side as well, if possible; not super stringent or choosy on how that manifests, but it'd be nice if it exists)
Of Man & of Monsters
"Was it the ghost of autumn in that smell
Of underground, or God's blank heart grown kind,
That sent a happy dream to him in hell?" - S. Sassoon, "Break of Day"
Alternate Earth | 1920's/30's-ish or Modern Day with some Old-fashioned Vibes | WWI-esque Ruin of War * Monsters & Men * Redemption * Ethics against Morals * Criminal x Law * Human x Nonhuman * Former Enemies * Soulmate??
Since mankinds' piscine ancestors first crawled to land, there have been other beings among them. The magical, mythical, and morphologically mysterious, ones that man dubbed "monsters" in the fairy tales Wolves and Beasts. The Monsters retreated from Man, disappearing into the cracks like rats in the woodwork, always scraping but gone unseen for fear that, should they be known, they would become no more--and, in time, fears turned to fairy tales turned to myth. Myth was a difficult, but not impossible, thing to maintain as the centuries melted into one another. Yet, as science advanced and the Industrial Revolution took place, those that had disappeared into the scaffolding of civilization were revealed and light cast upon them.
Man did not like when it looked in the Monsters' eyes and saw itself reflected back.
Twenty years of stringent, uneasy peace; twenty years of protests and fury and fear; twenty years of tension became eight years of war in which neither Man nor Monster emerged victorious. Peace was forged--peace forced by the atrocities of a world war, and the impending "unnatural" victory--and edged equality came between them. Now, Man and Monster serve with each other; they share in governance, in law, in the civil courts; they are citizens, side-by-side.
It has been ten years since the war ended. No legal segregation separates the peoples--to the contrary, both parties' engagement in the treaties and laws have created relative equality, given the relative power of the non-humans--but paranoia and projected perversions keeps them staying at arms' length from one another.
Noah Tanner is a man. He was born a man, is a man, and with any luck, will always be one. He was one of many soldiers in the war, having joined when he was still a teenager. Yet, the minute his boots struck home ground, he turned his back on the army and returned to school to become a doctor; the horrors of the war are ones better left behind. Today, he is thirty years old, a full-time doctor saving lives, and is one of the leading researchers of the supernatural. Nonetheless, however benevolent he is now, his history of violence is a complex one, as any one wrought with war inevitably will be--and that will come back to haunt him, as will the less-than-legal studies going on in the basement.
There are a variety of options for Y/C, and if none of these catch your eye, feel free to PM me with your own ideas, but here's what I've got: Y/C is nonhuman and a part of the law enforcement--an investigator, cop, whatever--who, on the down-low, is supposed to investigate Noah for war crimes, which is how the two meet. Normally, this would be the end of it, but the two form a curious connection: after their first meeting, when one is asleep and the other is awake, they begin to share dreams; furthermore, there's a bizarre attraction to one another (not romantic per se, simply weirdly drawn to each other). Noah's indicted some time but ultimately declared not-guilty--a verdict that may or may not be fair, depending on the opinion--and goes about his work, yet the two characters, in spite of their (assumed) dislike and the tension between one another, keep finding themselves together. Plotting is a bit open-ended here but the hope is that they wind up in a few tight spots or otherwise have some situations where they have to actually work with each other, and a friendship, even romance, develops, initial animosity notwithstanding.
Noah is a character considered to be lawful-good, but the line blurs between a means and an end--and he's more intimately involved with another leading scientist in the field of the supernatural than is exactly safe. For reasons his own and that I don't care to spoil, Noah is involved in the experimentation of supernaturals, with the goal of developing cures for lycanthropy, vampirism, magecraft, etc. to turn the "unnaturals" into "normal" people by rendering them powerless. Y/C discovers this on accident, cue the drama...
dystopia * war * love * hate * moral ambiguity * anti-heroes * heroes * justice and lack thereof * misguided good intentions * prejudice * growth * redemption
Genres, Pairings, & Mini-plots
Here's my general vibes~
* Extra points for anything MxM
* Dark Fantasy (usually tending towards higher fantasies, even if it's in a modern setting)
* Moral ambiguity
* Angst & drama
* Fluff & friendship/romance
* Broken together
* World War II
* Enemies-to-lovers/friends (including law enforcement/vigilante/journalist x criminal, antagonist x protagonist, & villain x hero)
* Slow burn romance (very slow...as in, maybe kissing a few hundred posts in...or more...)
* Platonic or romantic, any pairing where I can run my boy (so, MxF, M//, MxNB)
NOT interested in
* Abusive relationships that don't get better (fine with it being dysfunctional, just with them striving to be better rather than always getting worse)
* Hoping for a character that's got a vulnerable/chilled out side as well--all for strong characters, but I often run into issues (particularly with MxF) where the other character is over-the-top macho and can never take a chill pill. Not interested in that kind of character. Not to say I'm against intense or strong or badass charries! I'd just like them to have more to them than that.
Pairings (M/C bolded; no bold = no preference)
- anything enemies-to-lovers so long as there's slow burn and attention to ensuring it seems natural and not forced
- villain x hero
- serial killer x law enforcement/a decent human being/a journalist unwittingly looking for said killer
- reincarnated lost love, oblivious to this fact x probably another supernatural who's like "whoa it's my reincarnated lost love" and possibly a bit disappointed about what they see
- bodyguard x whoever they're guarding; bonus points if they got hired by a third party, extra points if said third party is already in a relationship with whoever they're guarding
- hitman x the person they thought was their target but isn't their target and now they're stuck with them (gotta be careful here cuz it can be hard to make the sparing of Y/C natural, but it could be fun)
- dumbass who showed up at a random door injured and passed out x whoever lives there (slightly flexible here)
- monster x monster hunter
- dark soulmates
Mini-plots - Playing off that age-old vampire trope of getting yeeted into a coffin or something at the bottom of the ocean and then getting pulled up, that's what happens--except instead of going in a hundred years ago and coming out today, he went in today and comes out [x] years in the future - M/C and Y/C are both monster hunters but what Y/C doesn't know--or what M/C doesn't want Y/C to know--is that M/C is actually a monster. Maybe Y/C is too and they've been hiding from each other the whole time, lol. - M/C is charming, quirky, and loves Frank Sinatra. Gets into a relationship with Y/C, but the closer the two get, the more starts to seem a little off--the pièce de resistánce? His first face is a musician, the first secret is that he's a pit fighter by night, the third's that he's a retired hitman, and the most hidden secret--and perhaps most terrifying of all--is that he's a serial killer. He's like an onion: he has layers and will make you cry. - M/C is, by night, a masked criminal; Y/C, by night, is a masked vigilante. M/C and Y/C meet without the masks and it's only once they're friends or lovers that they each realize who the other is. - (this could be modern day and both charries are supernatural, or it's in the late 20th century) M/C and Y/C met in WWII; M/C was a soldier of Nazi Germany, and Y/C was an enemy/victim of Nazi Germany. They meet again in the modern day, stuck working together for some reason. Have fun, kids.
Actual Plots, just not the Main One
𝒸𝑜𝓊𝓇𝓉𝑒𝓈𝓎 𝑜𝒻 𝒹𝑒𝓇 𝓈𝒾𝓁𝒷𝑒𝓇𝒻𝓊𝒸𝒽𝓈
Earth, Present Day - European Theatre, World War II - Could Be Convinced into Futuristic Fantasy Enemies to Lovers/Friends | Dark Fantasy | Modern | Historical | Crime | Protagonist x Killer
i. Courtesy of der Silberfuchs (Present Day)
In the Second World War, he was known as Silberfuchs, one of Nazi Germany's most feared soldiers, a boogeyman that was said to become little more than a shadow over the wall. He was seen in Berlin on the night of Hitler's suicide, and then disappeared, his true face unknown. In the 2010's, a copycat killer arose, leaving behind a calling card nearly identical to his predecessor's, inscribed in cursive and left upon the body: Courtesy of der Silberfuchs. They were consistent, brutal, even artistic, with religious scenes and a peculiar respect towards the bodies, made into grotesque depictions of what they once were.
The killings stopped in 2015.
Now, people are going missing.
- Y/C could be a journalist, vigilante, law enforcement, etc. if we wanted to do an enemies-to-friends vibe - Alternatively, Y/C could be a monster hunter, or a monster hunter vigilante by night and law enforcement by day...you know, just to really max out the drama (,: - Y/C could even just be a normal person unwittingly becoming friends with this friendly German man and then slowly realizing who he is as things escalate - Not really interested in target x killer but I could be persuaded - A lot of these could be merged to make some convoluted murder mystery of masks and deceptions, but somewhere between it all, a real friendship/romance blooming between the characters, as Kratzer largely seeks that normal life he can never quite have
ii. World War II & a Vampire | Historical Fantasy
It was a dark and stormy night in the European theatre when a man came stumbling out of the woods with his hand to his chest and diluted red streaking his skin through the rain. He wore all black, a vulpine silver mask, and an armband that marked him as an enemy. Yet, immediately upon his entrance, the man collapsed, and upon inspection, a bullet shone in his still-beating heart. - Krazzy is said vampiric soldier - Platonic preferred - Y/C may be human or supernatural, whatever you desire - My thoughts are that Y/C and M/C are forced into working together. M/C is not a Nazi soldier of his own volition, and in spite of his ambiguous morals, seeks to ultimately bring an end to der Führer's reign of terror. Maybe he runs into Y/C alone in the middle of nowhere, and Y/C is stuck surviving for some reason, or maybe they meet and Y/C saves his life and then M/C escaped, but Y/C is captured again later and encounters M/C as his captor, but now M/C owes Y/C a debt. - An idea off of this one could also be our characters meeting in WWII, as enemies or whatever, but then later running into one another after the war--if Y/C is supernatural, it could be decades later, even the modern day, and for whatever reason working together/becoming friends/something. This is definitely a concept that could be merged with Courtesy of der Silberfuchs too!
𝔣𝔦𝔯𝔢 𝔞𝔫𝔡 𝔦𝔠𝔢
High Fantasy | Multiple Worlds | Original Lore | Worldbuilding
Enemies to Lovers/Friends | Dark Fantasy | Modern & Medieval | Villain x Hero
When the changeling Prince Thaalajahar came to Sukur at nineteen years of age, having lived in the skin of a man but bearing the blood of the draconic Nyxus [ice dragons], the worlds saw little more than a notable youth, as powerless and inexperienced as he was exceptional. Thaala and Thaala alone was the final remnant of the Anguids (western-esque dragons), a genus wiped out by the Edini and by man, and so, too, was he the sole living heir to Sukur's thrones. He was a legacy: a hatchling god to the denizens of Sukur, the last monstrous relic of an extinct kind to those of Edin, a predator to man, and the only living blueblood to ascend the thrones when the last two Sukurian rulers perished.
He came to Sukur as a lost prince. He served Edin as a double-agent. He hid on Abzu as a human. Two years and a coup'd'état with the court-member's children and a small rebellion, he was no longer a mere relic, prince, or criminal. Taking on a name of his own, he rose again as the Winter King Cornyx Blackthorne, claiming the power of his birthright with a price of blood. He executed the court and instituted his own, presenting his people with a new system, a better one. He heard their cries and their needs and he answered them and Sukur entered its golden age beneath his rule. They called it the White Empire for the eternal winter cast over Sukur upon his ascension.
That was sixteen years ago.
Seven years of war with Edin have since given way to its fall beneath the winter eternal. Two with Abzu razed the supernatural factions once gracing its surface and easily overtook defenses made to battle mankind rather than monsters. Now, the White Empire extends over all three linked worlds, the first faction to achieve such a feat in history, yet as the Winter King rises in power, so, too, does his opposition. A rebellion calling itself the Last Circle grows ever-stronger as those opposing his tyrannical rule over Abzu and Edin increase in number, and the figure who made his coup possible--a creature named Apophis--has their eyes set on his throne.
Potential Ideas for Y/C & Plot (I have more details and more of these if you PM me):
* An enemy of the Winter King, such as a rebel, member of a subjugated nation, or a denizen of a new world that the White Empire seeks to conquer
* A person working in the castle, such as a guard or servant
* Perhaps the roleplay begins with characters as adversaries but Cornyx loses his throne and, through pity or through his usefulness, Y/C spares him and they end up being stuck together/working towards a common goal/etc.
* Perhaps the rp begins after he's lost his throne and Y/C initially meets him as just some random dude on [insert new world] 'cause he's living in exile and doesn't wanna die
* It could begin with Y/C's capture of the Winter King
* Ultimately, I see this plot with our characters beginning as adversaries or there simply being a power imbalance, but Cornyx ultimately losing his power and then finding himself with the other character; if they start as enemies, maybe Y/C learns a thing or two about compassion too?
* Half-baked but there's also the potential of him being defeated but being spared for some reason (maybe just no one wants to be responsible for a species' extinction by killing him lol) and Y/C ends up being his guard/keeper/warden to make sure he plays nice
Note: I do not require nor expect mirrored length/quality. I've written with beginners to people who are far better than I, and I hope to continue writing with a wide range of partners.
starter - modern fantasy*crime*powers - cornyx/cain
Part One The Rose King
Smoke wove in serpentine tendrils, swallowed by the darkness above. The place was painted in monotones, the only color coming in the glimmering titian of the cigarette's tip, illuminating the sharp angles of its bearer's face. Owlish, gaunt features on a narrow face with a Roman nose and wide, dark eyes shimmering in the black. Gold contrasting against the cool blue of his tie, the onyx button-up, the grey waistcoat and jacket. A few stray locks framing the edges of his heart-shaped countenance. The look in his eyes one that was deadly as the handgun hanging from his long, pale fingers, gaze trained on the figure who now stood before the king.
Ajax was his name, or it was what they called him. The regal figure who bore the name of a soldier from centuries past, who fought in Troy and for the victory of Greece, all power and valor and blood, who sat upon a throne resting upon the bodies of men below him and who bore a crown of thorns that few would dare seek. The man to whom the shadow-veiled smoker gave his obedience, the obedience of a hound to its master, a loyalty as sightless as the cold black in the distant ceilings of the warehouse to which the smoke ascended. The patter of rain thrummed upon the corrugated sheets far above, punctuated in time by the metronome of the steady drip-drip-drip of outside eaves and the tick-tick-tick of the watch in his pocket.
Drip. Tick. Drip. Tock. Drip. Again.
Fire shimmering at his fingertips, gaze acute and hawklike, trained on the man who was now speaking. His voice echoed dimly in the vaults of the place. His tone, low, dangerous, almost sweet. They were alone in the place. Cement-grounded, metal-roofed, empty except for skittering rats and a ghost-white owl that had disappeared upon their entrance. Once, owls were an omen of death in the West; to Rome, an omen of victory. Both were due today by the end of this. By the end of the monologue that droned on to the rhythm of the watch and the water that fell upon the city in some terrible baptism. There was no ark in this flood, however, only the blood of the damned.
"I don't appreciate our goods going missing," Ajax was saying. He was short, in comparison to the man leaning against the wall some distance behind him, with Hispanic features and a lilt that matched the street cant all the people here spoke, though his grammar was hardly so vulgar. "I warned you. Twice, I warned you; twice, I gave you a chance; twice, you've failed. And it leads me to rather wonder whether or not it is deliberate or if you are merely incompetent. But here you are. No money. Gone, again. You see my predicament, don't you?"
Smoke, searing the owlish figure lungs, light playing over his face, then receding into darkness once more. Incompetence or betrayal. Neither was good. This wasn't going to end well for the fellow on the ground, and as he watched, his mind flickered back. Flickered back to another man on the ground. Another man, begging him to see the light, begging him to turn all this away and see the good and the pure and the righteous. Another man, whose blood had sunk into the cracks of the earth, another mortal felled by the hands that now held temporary fire.
"Pl-please, it was just an accident." Trembling. Wavering. Unsteady. Tainted by not fear, but terror, the terror of the rat to the cat, the cat to the hound, the hound to Man.
Drip. Tick. Drip. Tock. Drip. Again.
"You know my thoughts on accidents. That's over three million dollars' worth of 'accidents.' And, now, someone who thinks they can take from us. That doesn't sound very good to me, does it to you?"
"One more chance. I won't fail again, I promise. I promise. Please."
"Cain," the voice said, and the light brightened when the cigarette was burned to its filter. The flicker of brightness receded as quickly as it came and the tall figure stepped out of the shadows. Thumb in his pocket, gun hanging from his fingers, cigarette striking the ground and left. Smoke pouring out of his nostrils like that of the dragon spoken of in Revelation, cast into the lake of fire for tempting mankind into sin, turning them against God. But this one, he'd eaten of the forbidden fruit himself. Everyone in the room knew that. "You've a good memory for things, you were here before. What was it I said to Isaiah here when he asked me for this job to prove himself to us?"
"'Once a mistake, twice a folly, thrice a choice,' " he replied. There was the slightest hint of a country drawl to his words but his grammar, like Ajax's, was impeccable. His tone, cool and even. Eyes, neither on his master nor the man shrinking before them, but cast somewhat to the side, almost to the ground. Yet, somehow, it didn't take from the power inherent in his posture.
"Yes." He nodded, then looked down at Isaiah, brown gaze turned black in the shadowed space. "And what do you generally find me to be a man who makes bad choices?"
"Mmm. Then you see my predicament."
Drip. Tick. Drip. Tock. Drip. Again.
"Cain." The king spoke again, and the younger figure's gaze flickered towards him, landing on his shoes. "Remind him what I meant by that."
Silence. Drip. Tick.
The footsteps echoing, wingtip shoes on the dampened ground, thumb coming out of his pocket. The air around them turning frigid. Breath, clouding white in the air, no smoke required to send the wisps into the darkness above.
Drip. Tock. Bang.
A scream reverberated in the place and Isaiah fell, leg buckling beneath him. The bullet impacting his knee. The stench of blood in the air. He pressed his hand beneath him, trying to push himself back up, and the footsteps came nearer to his still-moving body as he struggled. Patient, even footsteps of Ajax's second.
"Once, a mistake," Cain murmured, coming to stand before him. He hooked his foot beneath the man's abdomen, kicking him over onto his back, then rammed his foot onto his chest. The gun hung from his loose wrist and his forearm came to rest on his knee as he knelt over his target. Still no eye contact. He lifted his arm, barely glancing back to double-check his aim, rotating the gun so the muzzle pointed behind him.
Tock. Bang. Agonized cry.
He leaned forward, closing his fingers around the bleeding, beaten man's throat. Frost webbed over the metal, silver threading through Cain's dark irises, cold seeping through his bones. Every heartbeat sending ice through his veins from his chest to his fingers. Every breath, slicing, stabbing, sending the clouds into the air in exhalation. White coming across his target's skin. Lips turned blue. Fingers clawing at his killer's sleeve.
Drip. Tick. Silence.
Elijah Edwards. Twenty-one years old. Having stolen over two million dollars in a briefcase that was supposed to have been carried by Isaiah. Where that had gone wrong, none quite knew, and none quite cared. Cain's work was simple: find him, scare him, and tell him to give the money over. Set a time limit if he didn't already have it. Return at the end of given time and bring him back to the King of the Blackthorns if it didn't work out properly.
His gun was settled in a holster beneath his jacket, dark hair slicked and pulled into a tight ponytail at the base of his skull, pace steady and even and purposeful. Through the backstreets, through this alleyway and that one until he came upon the brick complex where Elijah lived. The walls were worn to a dull brown from their once-red hue. Wings clapped when he opened the unlocked door to the place. Pigeons, scattering, taking to the air, a single one of pure white amongst them. He paused in his stride, watching as they took to the sky and alighted upon the rooftops, cooing amongst themselves. Such pretty things.
He padded up the stairs, climbing to the second story, ignoring the look cast his way by the old lady in the hall. She shirked away upon his passing--as well she should have--and he pressed on until he reached the door he sought. Apartment 212. He glanced about, then knelt before it, withdrawing a pick from his pocket and inserting it into the door, followed by the sawed-off tip of a screwdriver. Wait. Shuffle. Click. Listen. Click. Listen. Click. Turn. Rotate. Kuh-chk.
The door creaked open. Satisfied, Cain stepped inside, closing it behind him and turning the lock. The man wouldn't know anything was amiss until he came inside and saw the gun on his table and the bearer gazing at him with an icy gaze. It was a pretty place, obviously kept by a man who had a sense of aesthetic, with maps framed on the walls and a vinyl records stacked neatly beside a player. A small piano in the corner, wooden, pretty enough. He knelt, thumbing through the vinyls. Indie, mostly; not his style. But then, in the back, one that caught his interest much more quickly. Johann Sebastian Bach. He flipped it over. There it was: Sonata No. 1 in G Minor. Presto. How fitting. He hummed softly to himself, sliding it into its proper place, setting the needle. Turning the volume down so that it added atmosphere but didn't make his words in any way inaudible. Satisfied, the man briefly wandered through the rest of the place. A bedroom. A kitchen. A bathroom. Nothing terribly notable.
This done, he returned to the main room, walking over to the table. Pulling out a chair that was facing the door and sitting down. His gun, set before him, quite within his reach, jacket hung on the chair next to him. He slid his long legs out and crossed them in idle relaxation but the luxurious posture was little more than a display of his power. Intention lined his muscles, was visible in the look of his eye, and then he waited. Waited for Eli to get home. Waited to get down to proper business.
part of a starter - modern fantasy*crime - kratzer/engel
Sweet, familiar petrichor seeped into Engel's nostrils and flooded his lungs, the terpene-tainted taste of it washing over his tongue. His jeans clung to his leg, made damp by the saturated duff upon which he knelt, the heavy fog that so wet it having become the veil between the man and the mortal world. Every breath turned white in the clouded air and every inhalation brought him closer to God while he knelt there before his sanctum. A rosary's ebon beads dangled from between his fingers, brushing the forest floor as he bowed in sacrosanct reverence, beading water dripping from his furrowed brow, caught on his lashes and falling once more to the earth with every breath that so shook the tremulous droplets.
What if I told you I could show you God, reverend?
His lips moved in silent prayer, the staccato syllables of his native tongue made softer by his muted intonation, punctuated by a muffled drip. Drip. Drip-drip. The sound of crimson staining the layer of detritus covering the weald's ground. Vultures hadn't yet begun their ascent, dawn transformed to twilight by the mist, thus turning the figure strung above shadowless: his arms were strung up, outspread to either side, nailed to carved wood that was suspended several centimeters above the earth; his body, stripped naked for the beasts of carrion; a perfect rendition of what he had worshiped, not unlike the carved sculpture held in Engel's palm. His ribs were perfectly visible through his skin for each rattling breath he took.
"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." Engel's voice lilted through the grey, the accent still clinging thickly to his words, yet his words were unmistakable.
Silence met his words, the man making no sound but for his thin expiration. His eyes were open but consciousness had long since left him. Dead already. Engel rose from the ground, stringing the rosary around his wrist, and strode forward to stand before the man. "Truly, I say to you--you will be in paradise," he continued on, his tone soft, the way one would speak to a distressed puppy on the side of the road. He raised his left hand and brought it to the man's shoulder as the digits of his right closed about a curved blade's hilt. He set the tip of it carefully against his abdomen to balance it atop the edge of an upper rib.
"Father," the man whispered, leaning forward, "into His hands I commit thine spirit." His knuckles turned white over the leather-wrapped grip, muscles tensing beneath tattooed skin, and blood gushed forth from the wound, diluted by the waterlogged air. His azure gaze met the other's verdant one, dulled and glazed by pain. Not the most beautiful ones he'd seen. Nothing compared to Callaway. It wasn't what he'd hoped for when he'd taken this one--but it was no matter. Not now, not as he studied the deep emeralds with lighter hues of prasine, subtle blues dancing beneath the green. They were unfocused already that he might not've known the other's death if he hadn't heard his thudding heart come to a stop.
Drip. Drip-drip. Drip.
He stepped away, taking a moment to look upon the body, eyes following the ropes hung over high-up boughs. His bare feet padded over the wet ground as he went to them, his knife lain abandoned where he'd sat before, and he wrapped the hemp around his hands and began to pull, one side at a time, bringing the cross ever higher. The crows would be upon it soon; he had no doubt. He drew the ropes around the tree trunk, leaving them hidden in the vines that encircled the ancient plant's body, then returned to the place where he'd once knelt. He drew a rag over the knife to wash away the blood, returning the weapon to its sheath in his boot, then reached into the small bag he'd left settled against a rock. A pencil, a paintbrush, and a cardboard-bound sketchbook came into his grasp. He settled cross-legged upon the forest floor and placed the paper carefully in his lap, then began to draw.
Whispered lines formed a shadow over his page. First came the emaciated body, every bone seemingly visible through the skin, limp upon the cross that bore him. Lines bled into one another as smooth shading took over the picture, a silhouette of tree limbs and the crucifix backed by the rising sunlight that had started to burn through the low clouds, bathing his subject in gold. It was only once Engel had crafted the graphite drawing into perfection that he took up his brush, dipping it into the threads of the rag and setting a thin layer of oxidized crimson over the hole in the reverend's side, tracing it down his leg and streaming to roots far below. It would flake and come off, but the stain would remain. Orange-brown in the future rather than brilliant scarlet--but he would remember this nonetheless.
Deed done, Engel rose, taking up his bag and bringing it over his shoulder, book and utensils then returned to its confines as he strode back home.
combat - modern fantasy*vampire - kratzer/engel
The hallway between the locker room and the pit was as poorly-lit as it was thin, the yells of an anticipating audience resounding against the metal door, the boundary between human civilization and barbarism in all its beauty. The scents of the hall filled each breath: sweat, exuded from the bodies of men and women alike who'd entered in one piece and come out in more, hearts still thrumming quick as a rabbit's and lungs only half-filling in rapid breaths; the acidic tang of adrenaline mixed with the iron of blood, awakening something within him he'd near forgotten he had; the more recent, fur-tinted musk that reeked of lycanthrope. Werewolf.
Silverfang Pack indeed.
The announcer's cry of his name pulled him from his thoughts and his pale eyes turned towards the threshold, a final tremor running through his body to settle into his physicality once and for all before pressing his palm to the cool iron and setting his weight against it, bare feet padding over hard and smooth stone as he came into the ring. Mere minutes ago, the man had stood next to a quieting street, somber melody dripping into his veins as he found serenity in the tones of his song; now, the wandering soul was replaced by the creature all had come to see, eyes hard with that metallic hue all vampires carried when their fell side came out and unsheathed fangs bared in feral greeting as he sauntered out into the ring, arms raised and head lifted to the crowd--and, instantly, the reason for his apparent popularity became clear.
The vampire's movements had all the fluid grace of a ballerina and the easiness of a tomcat strutting into his territory, and, with his tanktop dispensed with, his scars and ink were on display in their entirety to all who beheld him. He was by no means a ripped figure, but there was not an ounce of fat on his body to speak of, knotted lines twisting over taut muscles. Most of the marks marring his body would've raised an eyebrow or two, yet the numerous several-inch-long-gashes and swaths of pale pink flesh were overshadowed by the raised line bisecting his torso: it began in a Y-shape, one line at either shoulder and the two meeting at his sternum, then disappearing beneath his waistband and washed into discreetness as he stepped fully into the light.
Yet, in spite of all of this, he was positively dwarfed by his opponent: the average-height-at-best German was pitted with a well-over-six-foot wall of pure muscle, broad-shouldered and thick-chested, with deep brown eyes that were rapidly turning to a pale yellow-white as the so-called Jaeger took his place across the ring from him.
The man was large, impossibly large, even as a human. Young, though; if Kratzer had to guess, he'd pin the lad in his twenties, going by the fullness of his countenance and the still-unwrinkled nature of his skin. His expression, too, grinning widely as if he were a starving creature having just spotted a McDonald's burger haphazardly tossed onto the sidewalk. Well, perhaps a bit more sinister, but the thought still made the elder vampire's mouth twitch in faint amusement. If only a burger were the most of his concerns.
He rocked back on his heels, bent his knees, feeling the pressure on his soles, the rough spots of the ground, the draft coming from somewhere in the direction of the underground's entrance whispering over his bare skin. The tension where his neck met his right shoulder and the weight pressing into his legs. The coolness of his inhalations and the moist air in the exhale. The pulsing in his breast that had become so familiar, the last source of warmth a dead man had, picking up its pace and starting to pound in eighths instead of quarters.
The work is a dance, little fox.
The earth beneath him jolted as the wolf leapt off the ground towards him, the last specks of umber flickering out of his gaze as he charged. One bound, two, and he was upon his target, fur erupting on his arms and along his back as the monster started to take hold, but not faster than the one he faced. Jaeger was the mastador and Ares the bull: the latter rushing with great power and at great speed as the former dashed away with panache, narrowly pivoting to the side to evade his adversary--and pivoting one moment too late.
Claws sank into the seeming-human's shoulder, slamming him against the wire of the cage, metal biting his back and body being brought to an abrupt stop that it wasn't made for in the lycan's paws. The impact shuddered through him, head resounding and ringing with the force, and his vision blurred, overtaken by static greys. The mineral bite of his own blood filled his nostrils and the breaths he didn't need. In, with the red filling his consciousness. Out, with the thing within starting to rise from its cage.
His throat tightened as he felt it. The movement in his own consciousness, the superior level of awareness threatening to overwrite these human senses in the name of survival. One of these days, it had to stay down. Had to stay there, forget to awaken, and leave him to his peace.
His weight came off of his legs and the world was spinning, twisting in angles he wasn't supposed to see it from, and the next thing his mind processed was the lancing through his arm as he hit first the cage, then the cement on the other side of the pit from where he'd started. Thrown by a werewolf, a force that killed more individuals than it spared.
The sour taste of bile rose in his throat, hind-claws clicking on the floor as Ares came back towards him, well assured of his victory.
Open your ears.
He coughed, that ugly warmth ascending unbidden against his tongue, only to be expelled in diluted crimson before him. Crimson, dripping down his arm, his back, his chin; pain, searing in his muscles and his chest and in every motion he dared make; the echoing din of those who took pleasure in his defeat, screaming ever-louder as they beheld the vision of what seemed to be a man beaten in minutes, the outcome of the fight already determined even if it'd yet to end.
Ah. There it was. A heart.
Few would've been attentive enough to notice the turn of his lips, the evening of his weight, the steadying of his posture on the ground, chest still heaving and blood still dropping. Plunking onto the ring's marred floor.
The shadow came over him, hand shooting out to grab him by the ponytail so many had chastised him for keeping in his line of work, and the vampire jerked away with haste--haste that, again, was too slow to truly evade the lycanthrope, seeming some new fledgeling, slow and unwitting and green. Those who'd watched before knew better, but the ones who came for the first time? Well, he would just have to give them a show. No sooner had Ares' fingers clutched his hair to press his face into the ground than the vampire was moving again, twisting around and wrapping his arms around the werewolf's forearm, moving his weight back onto the half-shifted wer's body. He shot his head forward, teeth sinking into the lycan's arm, his life a stolen prize to renew his undead enemy's vitality; simultaneously, Jaeger shot up his right foot, dropping his weight entirely onto Ares' arm to throw himself backwards and hit the young man in the side of the head with all the strength and momentum he could possibly muster.
That'll teach you to be fooled by a fox.
The landed strike was enough to buy Jaeger the few milliseconds it took to suck his well-needed mouthful of blood into his cheeks, fangs loosening as he was lifted up off the ground to be hurled into the cage again. The scarlet flow bathing his shoulder and back started to slow even as Ares flung his arm out and Jaeger released, this time striking the earth in a roll and bounding back to his feet, pain easing into the background as his injuries slowly began knitting themselves back together. Now it was the fox's turn to be grinning with his wicked smile.
To Ares, this was a practice in vicious brutality, mastered through both speed and strength, pitted against his enemy with the sole desire to win. Yet, in Jaeger's eyes, the man before him was more than an enemy: he was a partner. Where Ares had the skill to outrun and out-strength near any figure he came across, the vampire had the knowledge and swiftness of decades upon decades of bloodshed; when Ares moved, he moved, following his partner to masterfully dance about him, reading Ares' motions before they ever even occurred. Every charge was met with a perfectly-executed evasion, no longer sluggish and not-quite-fast-enough; every swipe and punch with a dodge or a parry and a retaliation aimed for the throat or diaphragm or nose. Circling around one another, Jaeger healing with every taste he got of his adversary's blood, and, blow by blow, Ares started to slow down.
It was then that Jaeger stopped playing with his prey and closed in for the kill.
He swept around Ares, ducking beneath his claws and sweeping his leg out, moving his entire body behind the motion to ram his foot squarely into the man's knees to drop him, and moments later he was on his feet and bringing his leg down on the back of Ares' neck. Gravity and force became his only allies, and as Ares began to rise, he was felled once more by a jab or kick until, finally, he returned to his feet. Swaying, furious, a feral snarl unleashed from his chest as he towered above Jaeger, shifting his weight back in preparation for what might've been a winning blow if he'd been quick enough.
As he moved his weight, Jaeger lunged, taking advantage of the opportunity to plant his fist in the upper part of Ares' throat where his chin met his neck, sending him reeling backwards. Claws wrapped around the humanesque undead's forearm, raking his skin, but he was too far gone to care, the scent of his prey's weakness and impending demise overtaking his pain. His other hand wrapped around the back of Ares' head and he slammed his knee into the werewolf's stomach to double him over, then wrenched around, coming up above Ares to drop him once and for all, bashing the wolf's skull into the cement with a sickening crack!
Ares didn't get back up.
For a moment, all was still: the vampire poised over the unconscious body, skin streaked in sticky and thin liquid, the taste of it on his tongue. Chest heaving, muscles shaking with adrenaline, and then he rose. Rose, turning to the screaming audience, raised his arms.
Crimson rivulets dropped to the ground at his feet from his injuries and the spatter from beating down his enemy. Most notable of all, though, was the look in his eyes and his countenance. The haunted, broken man was gone, replaced by a being formed in the fires of adversity. A survivor. A fighter. A predator who would stop at nothing, who thrived on the adrenaline and the battle and the final kill. Who fed off of the yells of the crowds and the wild rush that came with such danger, as if facing death was the only way he could truly live.
The gaze of a monster, primitive and true, sanguinary in its purity.
He made no sound, only swept himself into a deep bow to the crowd, then turned on his heel, striding back out the door and leaving his opponent on the ground for the staff to deal with.
the short side - same rp as the starter - cornyx/cain
Ah. So this was the man. His dark gaze ran over the figure. Short brown hair, brown eyes, a style that was somewhere between street rat and casually stylistic. Silence was what answered his queries. Silence, as he assessed, eyes taking in every crease and wrinkle, every subtle movement, every muscle and the shifting of his weight this way and that.
Then came the chuckle. The low, dry, mirthless chuckle that was quiet but audible through the sound of the violins. He pulled himself forward, leaning towards the other man and bringing his legs squarely beneath him, as though he was soon to rise. He brought a finger to his lips in a signal for the other man to silence himself, meeting Elijah's gaze with his own cold stare. His other arm rested on the table, mere inches from his gun.
The man turned his arm as he lowered it. His sleeve, having ridden up when he'd gestured, revealed a tattoo on the outside of his forearm. It ran parallel to his arm, a rose's crimson head along the side of his wrist and the thorn-ridden black stem extending towards his elbow for but a few inches. A small triangle made of three dark dots sat where the petals met the stem, flickering on his wrist. To most, it was an innocent flower. To anyone who knew the gangs, to anyone who dealt in the underworld, it was a mark. The mark of the Blackthorns. The crimson petals that meant he was in the higher ranks of it.
"You have something that is ours," he said. "I'm here to retrieve it."