Protectors of the Crystals, a Final Fantasy RP (Dead)

wilcoblackflame

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Gerhard was approaching Vaila. Her nose let her know before her eyes, especially with her head still spinning a bit. Right now she sure didn't have any time to waste time on bickering though.

"Done." She muttered, casting cure on the mage's wrecked arm. He'd done an awful lot of damage to it. So for good measure she cast it twice. The wound looked like it warranted it.

Now then. Rubbing her sore nose, she started to look around for an entrance.
 

Doc Gnosis

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?... Thank you??

Something was wrong.

In the back of the Black Mage?s head he understood that he was in the tower - possibly at its peak - but something about where they were was unpleasant. The others who have made it could not feel it, but he certainly could. On top of the blurring of fiend encounters and improvised escape - which he was not sure how that happened - much of the stimuli became surreal to the Black Mage. He could swear that his vision was turning grey and that part of his mind was sinking deeper and deeper into unconsciousness. The only thing that kept him together and not collapse like his fellow black mage was his directive. He would finish this job, whatever it takes.

He walked up to the other black mage. He appeared healthy thanks to a white mage tending to him.

?Are you alright?? The Fat Bird asked. Protocol still functioned.

The Black Mage?s eyes focused back on the surrounding area: the spire, and the glyphs. He belatedly examined the runes on the close end of the room. He could clearly feel mana flowing from these runes, but as quickly as it materialized it vanished. Something the Black Mage assumed was absorbing the mana in these panels, and whatever is doing it must be doing the same to him. But why? Why have a source of mana here? What purpose would it serve?

?Do you think you can draw from these glyphs?? The Fat Bird asked both mages. The spire in the middle caught his corner gaze. Tiredly, he wondered if that large thin device is what?s causing the hum that?s vibrating his body. If that could be destroyed, could the hum finally stop?

His thoughts went to Ifrit, but cast them aside. He had already expended so much mana for Adrammelech, and wanted to keep hold of his reserves for simple spells.

He went back to the glyphs, his mask pressed by hand against his face for a better look. Apart from channeling mana, there was little else he knew about them. Nothing stood out; nothing made any sense apart from them being carved into the rock.

?Does anyone here know what these glyphs mean?? The Fat Bird asked aloud.
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

Better Red than Dead
Aug 5, 2009
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"Fan out, there might be a concealed door. If not, we'll have to blast open a door."

Wearily Gerhard looked around. They were on top of one of the towers he had spotted earlier. They had been fighting so furiously to get there that he had completely forgotten the actual goal of the battle. He bared his arm in front of Vaila as she did her craft.

"Done." she muttered matter of factly.

It had been ages since he had felt the relaxing aura of white magic flow through him. It was bittersweet to say the least. Muttering a low thanks to Vaila, he ignored the other Black Mage's concern for his safety and did a quick self evaluation. He was drained and would have to relax his mind before casting again. He cursed himself for his lack of endurance, a byproduct of several years of neglecting his craft in favor of self pity.

And now there's this buzzing..?

With his arm back to normal and no longer sending pulses of screaming nerve trauma to his head, Gerhard noticed for the first time the low frequency pulses of the runes they were standing on. These runes were like nothing he had studied with in the tomes Calamai had provided him during his apprenticeship. He could feel them although their ultimate purpose was unknown to him.

"Do you think you can draw from these glyphs?"

"I wouldn't even if you could figure out how to. Magic like this is beyond any single mage..." answered Gerhard, studying the spire. It almost felt alluring, attractive to his spirit. A dangerous sign of deeper magic if he ever saw one. Touching it would certainly lead to disastrous consequences.

"Does anyone here know what these glyphs mean?"

Not willing to admit that his education as a mage was sorely lacking, Gerhard changed the subject to their current dilemma.

"No time for that, let's find a way in before those monsters split off from the ship and dive on us instead."

Gerhard began walking with the Red Mage as they searched the roof for an entrance. Besides the inscriptions, the roof seemed to be solid stone no matter where they stepped. It was at this point he realized that the planning behind the drop had run on shoddy logic.

So the plan was to drop on top of a tower with monsters guarding it and that might not even have an entrance in the roof? War hero maybe but a genius she's not. This adventure is off to a great start.

All of the glyphs were indecipherable and Gerhard started to ignore them altogether. There had to be a physical feature of the roof that would give away a door.
 

Lambi

Yuki-Onna
Oct 20, 2009
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"Never try that again." Yuria said cheekily to Vaila as she landed onto the roof. Speaking of the roof, it was very strange. Strange runes were written in the stone, and she could sense magic from it. And not in a good way. Just what in the world do they plan on doing with this place...

She wasn't given much time for her own thoughts when the good captain gave them an order to look for an entrance. Going inside was what they were here for, so she started to look around immediately, staying close to Vaila. And unfortunately for her nose, it seemed like Gerhard was staying close to them as well. She had half a thought to cast a Water spell on him, but it was more important to find a way inside.
 

Mr. Omega

ANTI-LIFE JUSTIFIES MY HATE!
Jul 1, 2010
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Dagon had gotten back to his feet and saw his companions land on the roof. Now that he was in close proximity, he noticed something. "Does anyone else hear a buzzing?" Despite his years of physical training and neglect of all things magic, Yukes were a race naturally gifted in the mystic arts. It was incredibly faint, almost mute, but at this proximity it was just enough for him to notice.

"Monk, keep your voice down and help me make sure no monsters get close."

"If you insist..." he said in a quieter tone.

"Fan out, there might be a concealed door. If not, we'll have to blast open a door."

"I shall perform the later action should we not find a proper entrance!" his voice got louder, but still wasn't louder than a hushed tone. He stood there staring at the spire. "What a perplexing contraption. Is this the source of the calamity plaguing the crystals? Why don't we just demolish the accursed thing and be done with it? Then we can deal with the fiendish ones inside responsible!"
 

UnusualStranger

Keep a hat handy
Jan 23, 2010
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Roderic watched as the soldier types came to the tower finally, and the ropes were cut. So, they really were going to be staying here like a group of idiots. He wasn't too fond of that idea, but then they were being told to find an entrance, which he was more than happy to start his hunt for. He wondered if there was such a thing, especially on such a strange tower. As the others began to try and fan out, Roderic didn't feel like wasting his time. He knelt down, keeping a steady eye along the ground to see if there was anything out of place.

As his gaze swept across the surface, he noted something a little out of place. An area that didn't have a selection of distinct runes that covered it. While it wasn't the strangest of things, at this point Roderic was more trusting of his instincts than what would be a usual activity. Taking a few steps forward, he knelt down once again and ran his hand along the smoother surface.

Well well, it seems that someone has a taste for being sneaky as well. Somewhat fortunate that I came along then...now lets see how this opens up...

Running a hand along the smooth square location, he figured there was likely a small trick to the spot. It actually turned out to be not as complicated as the devices back in Victus, which Roderic was very grateful for at this point. It seemed there was a small folded handle that was ingrained in the stonework. Very clever design, but not unworkable.

"I think this might have been the better choice." Roderic muttered largely to himself, then to speak a bit more loudly. "So, who wants to go first? I already did the hard part..."
 

PrinceOfShapeir

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As one of them signaled having found am entrance Mira let out a barely concealed sigh of relief. This plan was not exactly a work of military genius, she was relying on little more than luck and her gut instincts.

The Alexander was speeding away, able to outrun the monsters the crew couldn't outfight, and soon the horde would likely return.

"I'll take the lead." She pulled the hatch open and peered down, the top few rungs of a ladder down a long shaft into the darkness the only thing visible. She grimaced, then jumped down the shaft, halberd clutched tightly.

A few seconds later she landed easily, bringing her halberd to sweep around her. Black as pitch, she thought at first, then her eyes gradually adjusted to the surroundings, a dim greenish light being emitted from runes all over the walls, similar to the ones on the roof. A charge was in the air, one that set the hair on her neck on end and set her skin to crawling. Even to her untrained mind the magic in the air was palpable, and something else - an equally palpable sense of wrongness, her very soul shuddering at this place.

"It's clear to climb down!" She shouted up the shaft.
 

Lambi

Yuki-Onna
Oct 20, 2009
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Yuria heard when one of them had found an entrance and went over to where it was. Mira went down it first, and after a few moments, things seemed to be clear to go down. She went to the hole and climbed down the ladder, her eyes adjusting fast to the darkness due to her being part cat. Runes like the ones on the roof adorned the walls inside as well, and she could hear the buzz more clearly now than she would have earlier.

"This place is something else..." she said quietly to herself as she reached the bottom, then looked around to get a better look at the runes. Something about this place made the hair on the back of her head and on her tail stand up, and her tail stood upright. She kept her hand firmly on her sword, just in case, ready if anything attacked them.
 

NeoAC

Zombie Nation #LetsRise
Jun 9, 2008
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Rowen wasn't really up for searching the area. Usually there is something obvious that pointed out the path, but this just appeared to be a bunch of clumsy drawings on top of a roof. Until the ears found a lever that opened the doorway in. Typical lucky bugger. Not wanting to stick around where monsters were still milling about, he fell in line with the group as they headed into the tower.

Heading down the ladder, that dull ache that Rowen felt when he landed on the spire was starting to return. The numbing pain wasn't overwhelming, but it was definitely annoying. It made it hard to concentrate on coordinating his limbs down the ladder, but since the alternative was much worse, he continued on.

"This place is something else..."

"It's something not right," Rowen remarked as he hit the bottom, the ache getting a little stronger. "Something's off here. This is starting to feel like a trap...or something." He withdrew his guns from their holsters, prepared to blast anything that he thought might be contributing to the unwelcome feelings in his body.
 

Doc Gnosis

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The answers were not what the Black Mage was hoping for, especially not the blatant disregard of his other query. A gloved hand traced over one of the glyphs, and immediately felt his skin crawl upon contact. Vast amounts of mana were seeping into him and threatened to numb all sense. He immediately withdrew his touch, clenching his hand over and over to make sure he had control over it. Theories about mana and its origins suggested that it was responsible for the shaping and cultivating of life but that too much exposure to it had detrimental effects on the body and mind; the Arcanists had taught the Black Mage that much about mana in its practical applications in part of their preparations for ?The Fat Bird? alias. The throbbing itch persisted in his hand, even after many attempts to stimulate it. The deafening hum was not helping with his senses either. A thought however came to him to test another glyph if it yielded the same results, and seconds later the Black Mage felt nothing but the same overflow of mana entering his arm. A thought occurred as he nursed his numb hand that the glyphs may be a sort of energy source either charging or in use for something in this tower.

Could they be powering that hum?

Readying his knife, he chipped and pried away at the panels, seeking to remove them from their moorings. It took some doing, but one or two glyphs were successfully chipped off; large sparks of lightning burst from where the knife hit, and a blinding flash encapsulate his eyes. He was stunned for quite some time, unsure of what was happening around him.

When the Black Mage came to, he recalled his original inkling. He reached out with his hands on the floor to collect them, but decided against it after remembering the sensation of mana overexposure. He reached into his robes for one of his waterskins, and emptied its contents in its mouth, slightly raising his mask so it didn?t get in the way. The Black Mage kept his back turned on the rest of the group as he went about his deed, not wanting them to see his face as the Arcanists instructed. Finally the skin was empty and with his knife the Black Mage made the waterskin into a makeshift satchel to hold the runes. With his knife and bag, he nudged the two glyphs into the bag. At the end he felt his vision become very distorted and lost track of where everyone is.

Then the call came from Mira, and thoughts snapped back to the job. He pocketed his glyphs and knife in his robes and proceeded along with them. As he approached the ladder, he felt his entire body shake and convulse. Either the glyphs or the sensory deprivation were affecting him as he grew closer.

"What the hell was that, mage!?" Whatever slow process the Black Mage underwent was interrputed by one of the people on the tower; anger clearly draping her face and body. Before he could reply, she grabbed him by the arm almost dragging him to where the ladder was.

"Get down that ladder! Now!" She growled out as she finished forcing him to his destination. As much as the Black Mage wanted to experiment more, the knight was right. He was wasting time with these glyphs, and what importance had little to do with the job. The Black Mage carefully climbed down the ladder, unfocused eyes staring at the knight right through his mask.

?So much mana gathered in one place. It cannot be healthy to linger for long.? The Fat Bird said aloud. He saw that people were speaking concerned, and protocol decided to spill what he could understand.

?It?s collecting something, but its purpose escapes me.?
 

Mr. Omega

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Jul 1, 2010
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Dagon took one last look at the spire before jumping down to join Mira and the others. "What a peculiar place. The very AIR seems foul!" he was still trying to be quiet, but each time he got a little louder. He then noticed a bright flash from above. "What the devil...?!" He quickly turned back to Mira. "Whatever these things are, we should waste no time in putting a stop to it! So, Captain... what shall we do? I await your orders!"
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

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Aug 5, 2009
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Gerhard followed the Red Mage down the ladder and felt the intensity of the tower's buzzing increase once he was away from open air. This was far from ideal. His own anxiety seemed to be magnified by the aura emitting from the walls. Gerhard hoped that the effects of this tower wouldn't slow his efforts to restore his magical strength for what came next. Above them there was a bright flash, causing Gerhard to turn and point his sword at the entrance but nothing happened so he lowered it slowly.

Can't get too jumpy in a place like this.

"This place is something else..."

"It's something not right, something's off here. This is starting to feel like a trap...or something."

"It wouldn't be the first time someone has abused magic like this but I've never heard of something this... vast." said Gerhard, remembering some of the lessons from his Master.

Great wars in the past once saw the construction of power obelisks for a transference of nature to man. It was one of the few times Calamai had spoken in grave tones about their order: "There's a reason we don't use magic to build any longer... Our number roams eternally, in penance.". Gerhard had never heard Calamai speak so softly about anything before or after that night. Whenever he pressed further on the subject he was met with an angry "We don't speak of it!" and usually ended up having to do something unsavory as a consequence for bringing it up.

Could this be related? Or is this even older than the ancient mage war?

Calamai had been far from a great scholar however. Surely someone with more interest in magical history would have some answers about the tower's purpose and construction. That however was not terribly important. They were supposedly here for a reason so he didn't see any point in wallowing in the experience longer than they had to. The whole place stank of danger.

"So, Captain... what shall we do? I await your orders!"

"Yes, let's not dwell. If our enemy truly is at work below we shouldn't give them time."

He sheathed his runed blade and clasped his hands. There would be more casting to do shortly.
 

wilcoblackflame

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Vaila gave a wry smirk in response when Yuria cheekily did exactly what she asked of her. Such amusement passed quickly though, once the entrance was discovered and the party began to descend into the darkness.

As Gerhard had seemed inclined to stay with Yuria and herself for now, Vaila followed him down into the dark, bringing up the rear of the tri-colour of mages. Red, Black and White and all of them, she was sure the moment she was inside, probably very uncomfortable with the atmosphere in here.

Though she was still not exactly fond of Gerhard, something he said caught her attention and drew her curiousity. Especially in the situation they found themselves in. "You've heard of a set up like this before?" Her ears had perked up in interest. "Is there anything in particular we ought to know about this arrangement?"

With any luck, he'd have some fascinating information. Maybe it would even make up for the smell, although right now the buzz was more of an annoyance than the mage.
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

Better Red than Dead
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"All I know is that in ages long past mages used to build up their power for those they swore fealty to by using awful magic. They would mark the land and tap its power for their own use. My master told me something terrible happened because of it and that our order has forever been punished for it. It's my guess that these things are from that time or even before but I bet you nobody alive understands everything about them." said Gerhard, forgetting his dislike of Vaila briefly. The history of the Dark Mages was one of the few things he had found interesting during his apprenticeship.

"Believe it or not, Black Mages weren't always benign like me. Calamai always told me it was a travesty we were used as guards..."

The old man was not the most reliable source. He was always drinking mead during the day and sea water in the night.

"That's all I got. If you want more information, go to a library in Durakia!" he said shortly as he accidentally brushed against a glyph wall. A nasty sensation ran through his body briefly but he managed to suppress it.

"I hate it here." he spat, returning to his internal meditations.
 

UnusualStranger

Keep a hat handy
Jan 23, 2010
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As the rest of the party began to make their way down, Roderic glanced up for a moment....only to flinch as a flash happened behind him. He didn't dare look, as he knew the intended effect was bringing the monsters down. It was time for him to get moving, and his annoyance was slightly matched by the knight who stood in front of the trapdoor, apparently wanting him to go down first. Though, he wished that he could just leap down and shut the door at this point.

"You gonna move it, or wait for me to mail you an invitation?" Roderic said, slightly annoyed that the creatures would not be ignoring their presence any more. "Just...remember to shut the door, or this trip is going to be a very short one!"

With his piece said, Roderic did a quick jump down, grabbing the ladder after a small fall so he could get down a bit more quickly, and leave room so the next person could get down as quickly as possible. As he began to make his way down, he caught the tail end of some conversation, but he imagined that there wasn't too much that concerned him. Especially as it sounded like it was talk of the runes, and the tower, which Roderic didn't need to be a mage to realize was somethign to heavily deal in magic.

Magic traps...always nasty. Going to have to be paying some very close attention down here. And I'm guessing no one brought some torches to keep the area a bit brighter. Ah well, just going to have to deal with clumsy people stumbling into traps, and just avoid them where I can.
 

SkyeNeko

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Dec 30, 2010
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Yeah, yeah, whatever Lilianna stared down the man as he grudgingly took the ladder down. Not a minute too soon Lilianna jumped in, spying a speedy harpy intent on crashing the party. She brought the hatch over just in time for it's claws to dent the cover. She could vaguely make out more noises from the other side, but the hatch stayed shut. Lilianna waited a few more seconds. Nothing. Satisfied, she slid down the ladder.

It was dark and claustrophobic for the gria, who was used to having every direction open for miles. There was some light coming off the walls. "Someone going to cast some fire spell?" She whispered, assuming the mages were close by. She kept her wings folded tightly against her back, not wanting to brush up against anything.
 

Lambi

Yuki-Onna
Oct 20, 2009
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With her adjusted eyes, Yuria could see that the room wasn't empty. Aside from the runes on the walls, the same needle they'd seen on the roof was protruding from the floor up through the roof, and there were various mechanisms that were there for unknown reasons, though Yuria suspected they had not been there for a long time. Probably been put there by the people who were draining the elements, possibly for that exact purpose. Along with that was a staircase that lead down, and if they would go over to it, they'd be able to see that it was kept along the walls down in a circle, with multiple floors down below them.

"I don't want to cast Fire in case it causes undesirable results. Such as an explosion." she said to Knight Lilianna. "Besides, I see in the dark." She recounted to them what she saw, in case anyone else couldn't see it properly. Once she was done, though, a woman appeared from the steps, having heard when Mira landed on the floor, and then heard them talking. Not counting all the shooting that had happened outside and the harpoons that had been lodged into the spire. She was dressed in a black dress, with a typical Black Mage hat on her. "Intruders!" she called down to the other people who were there, all of various classes and races, who had been waiting for them to arrive. "Guess we don't have much of a choice but to fight. Let's hope we won't need to use Black Magic." Yuria said as she drew her sword. Quickly after calling to anyone below her, the Black Mage cast a Fire spell towards the party, which exploded into several fireballs thrown in almost all directions.
 

Mr. Omega

ANTI-LIFE JUSTIFIES MY HATE!
Jul 1, 2010
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Dagon listened closely to Gerhard's history lesson. "Despite the little information, any little bit could prove useful. Thank you for illuminating us, Grouchy One!" He was then cut out by the arrival of yet another Black Mage.

"Intruders!"

He heard the shout and wasted no time, jumping into the air "FACE JUDGEMENT!" he shouted, planting both feet into the mage's chest, sending her flying towards the stairs, sending her crashing downward. "Her companions are on their way! Prepare yourselves! They'll only be momentarily delayed! Captain, do we seek to apprehend or to eliminate?"
 

Doc Gnosis

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?It?s not a safe place to begin with.? The Fat Bird said. ?So much mana gathered in one place is not good for the body, or mind.?

Mulling over what the other black mage said was something that he could do to distract him from the unease his body was feeling from the mana oversaturation. The air was thick and humid with the substance. If such an organization used such a facility, it would mean that they were very powerful indeed; either that or very foolhardy. The Black Mage could not imagine the fortitude these magic-users must possess as his body was still suffering from the effects of the two glyphs and the vibrating hum which he was certain came from the spire. That they could not only endure such exposure but weaponize it to the results the other mage spoke of gave the Black Mage pause. Either that of these malcontents were in way over their heads for what plans they had.

Whatever scenarios he could explore were brutally interrupted when a wayward plume of fire appeared in the Black Mage?s face and exploded before he could respond. His mask was scorched and his hat was smouldering; the former could be salvaged, but not the latter. The top of his head felt absent and cold by the air. The hat was removed before the pyres could damage him, and pulled out his wand.

He walked out ahead of the rest of the party, objective was to eliminate the foes no doubt approaching their position. A female Dragoon was the first that barrelled out of the corner, and was the first to intercept the Black Mage. She was also the first to be struck with a rain of ice, but the spell created side effects he did not anticipate. First, just as the blizzard spell hurt the Dragoon, he suffered the hoary frost as well; it was fortunate that he walked ahead of the group when he did this, otherwise they would?ve suffered the cold as well. Second, another target - a human knight - was frozen in his tracks, but he had just appeared from the corner. Finally, the stone walkway froze over due to the blizzard spell. It was the third consequence that rammed itself into the Black Mage?s skull.

One loose step caused the Black Mage to fall down the stairs, along with the Dragoon who crashed into the wall and fell a long ways. With no guardrail, he followed the Dragoon in his unintended plummet. His vision spun out as he fell down the shaft, body occasionally scraping against the wall and suffering jolts of mana from the runes. By luck, the fall ended much shorter than he expected, hitting the ground from a story below.

He landed on his back, and felt pain whisper across his nerves for a few seconds. He heard footsteps approaching from all around, either his comrades approaching or more foes closing in on his location. A cold metal object tapped his boot, causing him to look forward. He saw a human thief, with a pleased look on his face, like he saw a new score.

Thinking quickly, the Black Mage reached for his glyphs and with as much dexterity he could muster threw them at the thief. One missed, while the other hit him in the shoulder, making him hurt a little.... Not at all the results the Black Mage anticipated. He concluded that these glyphs from above were not power sources to exploit. But whatever answer he would get would be an academic point; the job would be finished afterwards and he'd wash his hands of these events.

The thief got out his knife and had it right to the Black Mage's chest before a Blizzard spell was loosed. The target was reduced to an icy statue while the caster was stuck in an icy cage; alive, but immobilized.
 

SkyeNeko

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Lilianna snatched her shield off her back, bringing the thick steel in front of her just in time to block a spatter of fire. "Ready to cast some magic now, mage!?" Lilianna glared at the cat woman briefly before charging with the monk. He ran right through the fire, taking out the mage who had cast it. She rolled her eyes when he asked if they were about to try and apprehend what she assumed to be a tower full of enemies. Then one of the black mages ran out ahead. "Hey! Wait!"

He ran headfirst into a dragoon, but luckily managed to get off an attack that froze her to the ground. What happened next was too stupid to be put into words. The black mage slipped on his own ice, and fell down the stairs. Shit! She hoped they had their first casualty so soon. He had fallen past the monk, and was pretty much out in the front without any help. Lilianna took a swing at both frozen bodies, the ice making them easy targets to her mace, which shattered them on impact. She half slid to the bottom of the stairway, another icy enemy meeting her. More quick work. Now if only the mage would do this from behind front lines. Part of her had to wonder how slow this thief was: it didn't look like he had gotten a single scratch on the mage, and to top it off, he was frozen.

Heavy footsteps on the stairs behind her made Lilianna spin, mace at the ready, barely catching an armored enemy's battleax on her weapon. The force did push her down on a knee though. Fuck, why can't I be big as shit too?? She twisted her mace, the ax falling harmlessly to the side while she dented his/her helmet with a counterattack. The stairs were slowing the trickle of enemies, as they could only ascend two by two, but she couldn't afford to spend too much time on a single enemy. Still, seeing the mage sprawled out of the floor, half frozen, gave her an idea. She charged at the bigger knight, planting and throwing herself at him/her, and pushing him/her down the stairs. A cacophany of metal and shouts confirmed that she had a few seconds to take out the icicle in front of her "teammate". "Cast fire and get yourself out, and stay behind someone who can fight." she ordered, careful to keep her voice clear of scorn.