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Nighthand
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Wryneck's Blade: Nighthand's Next Phase

Post by Nighthand » Tue Apr 19, 2005 3:35 am

To: Nighthand
From: Reinier
Subject: Gems
I gained a gem from Melzas, but I couldn't activate it. It's a deep purple, so I suppose it would most likely be your specialty seeing as how it's most likely darkness. I'll meet you at the hideout.

~Reinier


Nighthand was soon back in the Hideout, waiting for Reinier.

I wonder… What are these players to me? Gingi, Nall, I can consider them friends… Hijinx, even, could be an ally… But what of these others? Zan, Hacorie, Reinier… They’re filler, soldiers to train for our war…

But this Reinier boy… He has promise. Not that I’d ever tell him that, but still. These gems are practically pure energy, and he can harness it effectively despite having such little training in any form of manipulation…


Lost in thought, Nighthand was almost startled when Reinier entered.

“I like the decoration of a dragon… it adds a certain… finesse to the room… Anyway, I got this gem from Melzas, and well… I can’t work it. I think I need someone who’s amassed a certain amount of powers to activate it. And well, you’ve certainly done a good job of this…”

Reinier pulled his gem from his bracelet. Well, it looked like a gem, but wasn’t much more powerful than any other lump of stone. It DID seem to have some kind of power to it, but it was hidden, nowhere accessible. Like a lock without a key.

But I might be able to make this key…

”Well then, let me take a look at it. I might be able to do something with it… Darkness IS my favorite,” He held out his hand for the gem. Reinier tossed it to him, unexpectedly enough that it took a couple tries to catch it.

He gazed into the Gem.

Its blackness was a match for Nighthand’s eye, deep as night itself. The swordsmage could sense the darkness; he could feel the energy trapped inside the gem. He had an idea of what was wrong… but it would take a comparison to see.

”Alright, now let me see the ice one…” With a sigh, Reinier pulled it out and handed it over.

Nighthand compared the two gems silently for a moment, and found what he was looking for. The piece that was missing.

“I thought so. There's some kind of block; like it wasn't formed completely. It should only take a second to fix.”

Reinier nodded and watched as Nighthand pulled out a small darkness scroll and held it above the gem. Thankfully, he didn’t have to use his hack extensively for it; its instability could have destroyed the gem. His narutal affinity for Darkness was enough. It seemed to melt in to a cloud of black smoke, which quickly formed in to a black orb. He shoved the orb in to gem, which started shaking violently. “Is that nat-” Reinier had been quickly cut off. In a massive explosion of what seemed to be pure darkness energy, and Nighthand blacked out.

~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~::~

In a flash, Nighthand was disoriented. A second, and he was once again able to see, to recognize his surroundings.

Soul’s Eternal Cry. The Soul Shrine.

The Soul Shrine… A place of power, of serenity… a place where Nighthand went when he needed somewhere to rest. And as much as he needed to rest after all that had happened…

How did I get here?

No answer.

Silverblade?

No answer.

Nighthand sat up, not realizing he was on his back until then. Something was wrong. The familiar bird noises of the field were gone, the trees were still as death. Almost like the field had been frozen, locked in a moment.

Nighthand hurried to his feet, and ran off through the trees. He knew where he was going, he knew the field like he knew the back of his hand. And, he wasn’t sure quite what, but something was amiss.

Breaking into a run, his heart pounding, Nighthand abruptly broke into the central clearing. He stopped dead in his tracks.

The ground was littered with rubble. Here and there, a recognizable bit of stone rested where it lay. His eyes widened at the sight. The statues of the twelve were gone, blown to rubble.

The ground shuddered, and the shadows lengthened as the top half of the central Seraph statue explode.

Nighthand shielded his eyes from the blast. When the most of the dust cleared, he looked on at the assailant. Who could be doing this?

On top of the severed half of the Seraph, perched a character Nighthand was all too familiar with.

”Silverblade…”

“Ah, Nighthand, so nice of you to join me for the grand finale. Your timing is impeccable!” There was an edge to his voice, something broken in the way he talked.

”Silverblade, what have you done?”

“What have I done? Why, nothing you wouldn’t have. I’m simply destroying these chains that hold you. With these statues destroyed, you are free to wreak all the havoc you wish!”

”No…”

“Oh, yes, yes…” Silverblade said. “Now, watch, the grand finale!”

The caricature of Nighthand in front of him raised his hand to the air. Six streaks or paint on his wrist pulsed with light. Nighthand now recognized them for what they were; scrolls, broken down into their essence. The energy, released, followed a will not it’s own. It glowed brightly and streaked out around Silverblade’s wrist. All six of them, representing each of the elements, congealed into the player’s hand, forming a globe. The globe pulsed like six kinds of liquids all mixed together, but never really mixing.

“HA!” Cried Silverblade, and the elements all abruptly fused into one golden light. “Come to me, blade of purity! Goldstorm, Awaken!”

The golden globe elongated abruptly, forming the blade Nighthand had seen once before in his dreams. Goldstorm, the perfect blade, formed completely from the powers of the elements. Once more wielded by Silverblade, once more against him.

“Now watch, Nighthand, for there is nothing you can do.” Silverblade raised the sword above his head and reversed it. He leapt, and thrust his blade straight down. Nighthand, distracted until that moment, never knew the target.

Arra’s statue.

Silverblade drove the sword through her. It shuddered for a moment, and then the statue filled with cracks. The echo of Arra’s dying scream resounded in Nighthand’s head, as the very world around him shattered like the statues before.

******************************

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Post by Nighthand » Fri Apr 29, 2005 2:22 am

With a gasp, Nighthand sat up. He was once more in the hideout.

”Ugh, what was that…” Nighthand muttered to himself. He put his hand on his knee, encountering a slimy goo over his legs. ”What the…” Suddenly he remembered Taimat, and his “cold”.

”Taimat, you bastard… Where are you?” Quickly scanning the hideout, he noticed three things. First, Taimat was ‘sleeping’ on the couch. Second, Reinier was nowhere to be found.

Third… His gems were still here.

Knowing instinctively that something was wrong, Nighthand snatched the gems from the ground. Ice, Light, Darkness. All three were there, untouched by anyone else. Taimat was the only other occupant of the room.

”Ugh…” Nighthand said, wiping the goo off his legs and tossing it at Taimat. The dragon writhed and dodged, and returned the favor in the form of a spitwad. Nighthand leaned and ignored it, watching the dragon leave.

What do I do with these things…? Nighthand thought, looking at the gems.
Why not take them to the Soul Shrine? Verona is bound to have some idea what to do with them…
Sure, why not.

Nighthand left the hideout, and headed for the chaos gate. ”Souls Eternal Cry” He said quietly, warping to the special field.

********************************

”I see you’re all here… Where’s the party at?” Nighthand said.

He was in the central plaza of the Shrine. Arrayed before him were the numerous statues, their attendant spirits standing before them. Except Arra and the Seraph, of course. Verona was present, as was Shard, who had tailed him here… On top of that, Rock was there as well, in character. Even the SDRP was there, a slight distortion in the air. The spirits of the Twelve were idle, still as the statues behind them. Shard was still as well, except his tail twitched back and forth. Rock stood calmly, arms crossed in front of him. Nighthand noticed that his father’s character didn’t have a class weapon, or design visibly recognizable.

Verona stood further forward than the rest of them. She was looking decidedly regal, as well. She wore a new dress, long and flowing. It was shimmering with the colors of autumn up and down, greens and reds and browns. Her hair was straight, red-brown. She alone held a weapon among all of them. Her spear rested lightly in her hands, tip pointed at the ground. The long crooked shaft looked like a branch stripped from any tree in the forest, and the tip was a hooked blade of stone.

”We gathered here today to gift you with a new ability; a latent one your Father has been working to develop for you. It isn’t complete, but it is complete enough.”

”Alright… What is it?”

“I call it the Nightblade.”

“Nightblade, hmm? Well, where is it?”

“That’s the problem. I was unable to transfer it outside of the lab I created it in. Apparently, I tied it to you too much, that I am unable to move it.”

”Alright, so I’ll go fetch it. Where is it?”

“The lab is on a separate field. It’s locked and hidden securely, you’ll need this to get in.” Rock said. From inside his pocket, he drew a key. It shone golden in the light of the field. Nighthand reached out and took it from his father.

“The keywords are Delta: Hidden Gripping Phantom.”

Nighthand nodded, committing them to memory. He turned to leave, pocketing the key. It clinked against one of the gems, and he remembered his original purpose for being there.

”By the way.” He turned to Verona. ”I have a friend, Reinier. We tried to activate a part of his powers, a gem made out of the powers of Ani. It seemed to trigger some kind of vision, and when I came back to consciousness, he was gone. Normally, this wouldn’t bother me, he has a tendency to avoid trouble when he can, but this time he left his gems behind. THAT he would never do. I figure something’s wrong, so I took the gems with me. I figured I’d bring them here, for safekeeping, until I can find him. Hell, I know how this place tends to increase the powers of those who go through the shrine, I figure maybe he can make it through even. So… Will you hold onto them?”

Verona nodded, and Nighthand passed over the gems. She handed them to Iyal, one of the Twelve, the female heavy blade. The diaphanous form of Iyal faded out, the gems with her.

Content that they were in good hands, Nighthand went to fetch his new toy.

****************************

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Post by Nighthand » Thu May 05, 2005 4:28 pm

Back in Mac Anu, Nighthand quickly turned and put the keywords into the gate. The field wasn’t much, just a level three. Earth elemental, so it wouldn’t have a temperature extreme like the fields he had been going to recently. Seeing nothing else to wait for, Nighthand gated in. He was stopped by a prompt from the gate.

<Insert Key>

Nighthand pulled the key from his pocket, and held it out. The gate seemed to blink at him, and the prompt disappeared. He was in. The field materialized around him, and soon he was standing on a rocky plain.

Looking around, he spotted no portals or monsters nearby, but the dungeon was on the horizon. Reaching into his scrolls pouch, he withdrew a speed charm. A twitch of his thumb activated it, and he felt its energy flow into his limbs. Careful of holes and boulders, he raced off for the dungeon.

It wasn’t long before he made it to the small building, little more than a gateway leading deep underground. Ominous sounds and a cool breeze wafted from the portal into the earth.

He headed in.

The walls were earthen, raw, as if hewn out by a giant spoon. The pathways were uneven, twisting and turning. Thankfully, the built-in map feature of the game was active and working, so he was able to choose his path without accidental backtracks.

Dananananana killin’ the monsters….. Nighthand hummed to himself, as each room her entered had a portal within. They all spawned their random assortment of boring creatures, a few hungry grass here, a couple giant moth-things there… All in all, it was quite a boring run.

What fun is it if everything dies with a single hit, and none of them have even a chance of scratching my armor?

I bet you the only fun you’d have with this type of monster would be in a small room filled with hundreds of them.

You know, that’s not a half bad idea. Lets do that sometime.

Why did I have to tell him…

By this time, he had reached the end of the line, the Gott room. He hadn’t even been paying attention, really. Just walking, killing things that got in the way, and here he was. But something was still a bit off.

”Where is that lab…?”

He walked up and opened the Gott chest, expecting some trinkets he could toss. Instead, he found a note.

Dear Nighthand

I Figured you would come down here first. You’re impulsive that way. Too bad you didn’t look far enough behind you when you gated in; the Lab is in a different building.

I mean honestly, why would I want to crawl through monsters to get to work?


”…Damn I hate smartasses.”

He’s right you know, you never did listen to people like that.

Shut up, you.

See what I mean?

Nighthand turned, activated State Shift to speed, and was soon outside the dungeon. A little bit of casual jogging brought the lab building into view.


Nighthand walked up to the sterile-looking building. Pushing open the heavy metal door, he was surprised to see the inside of any normal office building. Casual carpet, fuzzy cubicle walls, fluorescent lighting, plastic desk in the corner. The entire furnishings of the lab amounted to a desk, a table, an office chair, and a computer terminal.

Nighthand walked up to the computer and sat down, propping his weapon against the desk next to him. Alone on the desk was a single piece of paper. Instructions.

Step One: Wiggle the mouse to bring the computer out of sleep mode.

”Sheesh, Rock, did you have to be THIS detailed?” A bump of the table brought the computer humming to life.

Step Two: Type the following lines.

Nighthand typed as was on the paper, lists of commands that should work as advertised.

__spawn:nightblade:1
x135.32.57 y394.59.39 z583.29.30
_deac:trpfld:vak
_deac:trpfld:rue
_deac:trpfld:rai
_deac:trpfld:ani
_deac:trpfld:juk
_deac:trpfld:gan

Hitting enter caused a flash behind him. Turning, Nighthand saw that the table in the middle of the room was no longer empty. Instead, a blade as black as the night sky rested there. Faceted, it looked like it was carved out of the hardest blackest crystal imaginable. The blade itself was immense, thinner than the normal heavyblade, but slightly longer. Almost a six foot blade, with a two foot handle. Jagged spikes stuck out from the hilt, in place of a crosspiece, to protect the hands. The pommel, instead of ending, sprouted a long coiled whip. As he watched, the whip retracted into the handle, leaving a spike on the end of the handle.

”Now this… this is what I’m talking about!” Nighthand reached out to take the blade.

There was another flash, of darkness this time rather than light, and when the ephemeral smoke cleared, the table was empty. Looking down at his arm, Nighthand found a twisting, angular tattoo on his wrist.

Step Three: Use a darkness scroll to summon the blade.

“Great, so it’s not even a weapon, it’s just a spell. Oh well, I’ll go talk to them about it later. It’s about time I made another appearance in the root town.

Leaving the lab and the field, Nighthand was back amongst society. Now he only had one thing left to do. Track down Reinier.

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