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Ronin: Illusionary Containment Technique [HI]

Rhetorical_Writer Aug 19th, 2019 (edited) 184 Never
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  1. [00:24] Elryka Sohramei asks, "But alas and alack, ah must be runnin' away now...hopefully I'll see the both of ya' around soon, aye?"
  2. [00:25] Zhurong says, "Hopefully. It was quite the interesting meeting."
  3. [00:25] Ronin says, "I've personally taken to the study of magics that I feel as though can some day change the world for the better, if applied correctly. I was hoping for some assistance in my--... Oh. Well, that's a shame. At least, it was nice meeting you. We will meet again when we both look towards recruitment, I suppose."
  4. [00:25] Elryka Sohramei exclaims, "Aye, take care then!"
  5. [00:26] Ronin asks, "What of you, Zhurong? Would you be interested in joining me in my studies?"
  6. [00:28] Zhurong says, "I'm not much of the studious type, to be quite honest. I find myself to have much more sucess in the art of destruction, as averse to our own philosophy that may sound."
  7. [00:31] Ronin asks, "I am intrigued. Would you care to demonstrate?"
  8. [00:31] Zhurong asks, "Demonstrate my magic?"
  9. [00:32] Ronin says, "Of course."
  10. [00:32] Ronin says, "If you'd prefer that in the form of a spar, I do not mind."
  11. [00:32] Zhurong says, "Well, as fun as that might be, i'd prefer not to burn down our... base."
  12. [00:33] Ronin says, "Well, not inside."
  13. [00:33] Ronin says, "That'd be counterproductive."
  14. [00:33] Zhurong says, "I'd be fine with sparring, though, yes."
  15. [00:43] The challenge was made for a sleuth of reasons.
  16.  
  17. From the curiosity he had for who Zhurong was, to the limit of his capabilities-- Though, this wasn't simply an excuse to spar.
  18. He wanted to test something... He wanted to push himself, just a bit further.
  19.  
  20. "I've been really looking into my studies on different arcanes." He started flat out, "Though, I've been critiqued in my travels that I've only ever studied 'Utility magics'." He sighed some bit, as though discouraged by this.
  21.  
  22. "I was told that, without a core element-- My practices would fall flat." His figure seemed to go limp, relaxed albeit not faltered to the earth's pull. Just the opposite, it ascended slightly. The loose clothing he wore seemed to lightly dance in a buoyant toil - as though submerged beneath water's embrace.
  23.  
  24. "Gravity was my first arcane. I figured, with control over space and relativity to other bodies, I'd begin to better understand the world around me."
  25. There was a brief pause as he cleared his throat.
  26.  
  27. He clapped his hands together, physically straining some bit. A subtle gleam of alabaster escaped the cusp of his grasp, before he pulled his arms apart, revealing a slender manifestation of his mana taking shape. It hovered before him, before he grasped at what would be its hilt.
  28.  
  29. Before the eyes of himself and Zhurong, was a blade, forged of... Thin air?
  30. " Then, I came to practice the illusionary arcane. " He explained, "-- To manipulate the senses, to turn reality into my own. " He swayed the blade off to his side, eyes now locked on Zhurong.
  31.  
  32. "... And... Alas... The next focal point for my study shall be, what governs reality and space." He leaned forward, beginning his encroachment unto his soon-to-be sparring partner.
  33. "Time. I will manipulate Time itself... Or at least, the perception of it."
  34. (Ronin)
  35. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  36.  
  37. [00:45] Ronin says, "With these arcanes, I seek to invoke balance. Thus, The Order of the Phoenix, feels apt."
  38. [01:03] As they stood upon the dirt, Zhurong's own form lifted ever so slightly from the ground, bright orange flames slowly surrounding his form. As if the fire had a life of it's own, it snaked around him, the ground around him slowly roasting under the intense heat that was emitted from his form.
  39.  
  40. His green eyes glowed with energy as he stared at Ronin, the crackling of the flame being the only other sound entering his ears as the man spoke.
  41.  
  42. As the man's monologue came to an end, he nodded in understanding. He'd always been a combat mage, so he'd never met such troubles. It was odd, really. The way people would put others down for not following the common path.
  43.  
  44. "There are many people in Agartha who know not what they speak of. To have such a variety of magics at your disposal - especially magics of that kind - could be nothing but your fortune. As long as one is willing to put in the effort, anything can become powerful."
  45.  
  46. Shifting slightly, his scythe quickly lit up with flames, and he drew it from it's spot resting against his back.
  47.  
  48. "I look forward to such a day."
  49. (Zhurong)
  50. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  51.  
  52. [01:05] Ronin says, "As do I."
  53. [01:26] The spar began, and immediately, swathes of flames shot out, ravaging the field uncaringly. The fire drakanite held little back, only keeping his power from reaching the level where it might injure his current sparring partner.
  54.  
  55. His strategy whenever he fought was quite simplistic - overwhelm and annihilate through aggression and power. And, despite it's simple nature, it often worked quite well for him. His flames seemed to leave no part of the field untouched, blackening the dirt and setting the grass alight, it was as if Ronin had entered Ryujin's own domain.
  56.  
  57. Pillars of fire broke through the ground, the nearly blinding light emitted by the many fires making the field all but impossible to easily navigate, and with the support of his daemon, it seemed as if Zhurong had been blessed by the fire gods.
  58.  
  59. Of course, Ronin, with all of his experience, was no easy target. His manipulation of time and gravity allowed him to, at times, easily avoid and undo Zhurong's attacks, allowing him to battle the drakanite with some degree of nonchalance.
  60.  
  61. The scene seemed to be one straight from an apocalypse. Gouts of fire would burst from the ground under him, sending sediment flying everywhere, only for everything to rewind, the ground going back to its normal state before being set alight once more.
  62.  
  63. At the same time, Ronin's magic eroded at Zhurong's body, rapidly decaying some of his outer layers of skin as their fight went on. Along with this, he oft found himself blinded and battered, a potent combination of magic being exhibited by the man before him.
  64.  
  65. However, of course, this could not go on forever. A bright flash of energy came from Zhurong as he generated a massive ball of flames, sending it flying towards the man in the middle of his attempts to dodge and block. Then, despite all of the arcane magi's efforts, he found himself blasted into the dirt by the flames.
  66.  
  67. Realizing that their fight had come to a close, Zhurong descended to the ground, the flames around him slowly dissipating as he allowed his aura to do the same.
  68.  
  69. Walking over to the recently downed man, he offered him a hand.
  70.  
  71. "It was a good fight."
  72. (Zhurong)
  73. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  74.  
  75. [01:45] The blast of flames... It had a unique sting to it-- Not quite a sharp one, but a brash shove that singed past his clothing.
  76. It was odd... But he took to relishing in the experience.
  77. Certainly, it was far from pleasurable, but he felt the need to remember that sensation.
  78.  
  79. Remember... What it felt like, to be burned...
  80. To encase that memory within the confines of his mind, would mean he could use it to warp the reality of others.
  81.  
  82. "A good fight, yes... But..." He reached up to grasp at Zhurong's forearm, rather than his hand.
  83. "I'm not done yet!" He jerked his arm down to pull himself up to the pyromancer.
  84.  
  85. Something was bit different this time...
  86. As he moved for Zhurong, he seemed to... Transcend physicality? It was almost as though he simply pushed his person... through Zhurong, and passed him entirely!
  87.  
  88. No, this was merely an illusion. But... When did he cast it?
  89. When did Ronin see the opportunity to give the slight-of-hand? To evade the perception of defeat...
  90.  
  91. Certainly, he was truly downed, was he not? Could he cast doubt in that perception? Or... Maybe, that was truly reality.
  92. Regardless, it had went to show just how far his illusionary mastery had come in his years.
  93.  
  94. "I said in a previous encounter, that despite the fact that the illusionary arcane can be perceived as a 'Utility'... Its potential... Is infinite." He pivoted around to face Zhurong once more. This time,his person seemed... Less than solid... As though, taking to a chameleon's likeness in an environment that demanded it so.
  95.  
  96. " I can be one..." Ronin monologued...
  97.  
  98. "-- Or I can be many..." Another voice followed up, to bring the image of yet another Ronin from the treeline?
  99.  
  100. "Just one... After another..." A more translucent image of Ronin manifested just outside of Zhurong's gaze.
  101. Three Ronins?
  102.  
  103. " I can bare all elements... Or none of them. Regardless... Let us take upon another round, hm?"
  104. (Ronin)
  105. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  106.  
  107. [02:32] Ronins application of his Illusion magic was undoubtedly a new experience for Zhurong, who was used to the common techniques most people who only dabbled in the Illusionary arts would use.
  108.  
  109. It was as if the older man was playing pranks on him, his transparent form shifting between seeming real and seeming to be dreamlike at his command.
  110.  
  111. Had he won? No. Obviously not. Not if he was still capable of these things. So, Zhurong smiled. This was quite interesting. It had been some time since he'd had a good stretchs like this - his fights in the training tournament the previous days may have been nice, but they were quick. Effortless on one side or the other.
  112.  
  113. This.. this, was a battle. Just the way he liked it.
  114.  
  115. So, turning, he gave the illusionary figures a grin.
  116.  
  117. "It is always quite nice to have numbers, Yes.. but your illusions, you numbers. Can they subsist under absolute power?"
  118.  
  119. With his words, it seemed as if something had been lit within Zhurong, the flames of excitement in his eyes seeming as if they could burst into reality at any moment now.
  120.  
  121. He raised his arms into the sky, and unlike his usual silent casts, this time, he spoke.
  122.  
  123. "Flames of life, burning ever so brightly - heed my words... erupt."
  124.  
  125. As the final word so smoothly rolled from his tongue, the area around them distorted. The extreme heat that was now being brought into existence by Zhurong's magic bending the light that dared pass through it in odd ways.
  126.  
  127. And then, fire.
  128.  
  129. Invigorated by cosmic energies, the power that Zhurong could output far exceeded his usual capacity. And he made sure to make such a fact known.
  130.  
  131. Beginning at the center of his chest, flames slowly engulfed the field, creeping along at a sluggish rate, but quickly incinerating whatever it neared.
  132.  
  133. This was magic. Truly.
  134.  
  135. It was as if he'd initiated a miniature supernova, the cosmic energies supporting and synergizing with the energy he allowed into his flames, doing just as he'd mentioned to Ronin: Destroying.
  136.  
  137. Ashes covered the field, the remnants of any trees and grass that had been approached by his deadly flames. And then, as if that hadn't been enough;
  138.  
  139. "EXPLODE!!!"
  140.  
  141. A flash of white light, and the fires seemed to be extinguished, Zhurong finding himself on one knee.
  142.  
  143. Yet, it was not over. No, no, it had only just begun.
  144.  
  145. Ronin's arcane magics, his careful, intelligent, and quick application of his utility magics.. or Zhurong's show of raw, vicious, devastating power?
  146.  
  147. Above the field, the flames that had once been slowly creeping along had now all gathered into a miniature sun, ready to smash down upon one of Ronin's form, uncaring of if it was the right or wrong one.
  148.  
  149. And smash down, it did.
  150.  
  151. Without prior warning, it sped towards the ground near the middle of his three forms, and exploded.
  152.  
  153. Once again, a bright, nigh-blinding light erupted, and the area around all three of his forms found itself... gone. The flames, with all their power, had heavily cratered the ground that Ronin stood upon, only sparing Ronin through the will of Zhurong himself.
  154.  
  155. And their second bout had come to a close.
  156. (Zhurong)
  157. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  158.  
  159. [02:50] So this is what it looked like...
  160. This... Was...
  161. "Raw. Power."
  162.  
  163. Grass was rendered to crimson ashes, with saffron flakes to peel in the aftermath.
  164. Soil was rendered blackened, to leave a soft soot to sling to the air.
  165. The atmosphere tasted of smoldering plant matter.
  166.  
  167. The doppelgangers of the illusionist were vaporized in the explosive display, leaving only Zhurong as the victor.
  168. Only a single image of Ronin remained, straining to pull himself upright. Clearly, the charred remnants of clothing that clung to the skin implied direct damage.
  169.  
  170. He was panting.
  171. Tired and aching.
  172.  
  173. "So... That's... What you meant by destroy." He spoke through his breaths, holding himself up, palms on his knees.
  174. Beads of sweat budded across his face, some of with sinking for the tip of his nose to drip away.
  175.  
  176. Though, a touch of the hellscape terrain rendered them to wisps of steam.
  177. "How I wonder, how you channel such power. Such, heat..." He spoke.
  178. As tired as he was... It was odd that his voice could carry what distance it did, almost as though replicated through his arcane practices. It was seemingly omnipresent, despite the source being visible.
  179.  
  180. No...
  181. This was another illusion.
  182.  
  183. "Is it passion?" He asked, taking to brief pause.
  184.  
  185. "Is it anger? … Perhaps, it's vigor. I imagine, it must be a trait that complements the façade of flame."
  186. Ronin's limp figure looked up from his wispy form, and slowly took to ascension.
  187.  
  188. "So, what happens if I take that trait away... Do I disable your powers? Do I flip the switch? I suppose, time and opportunity will tell."
  189. He took to a hard glare for Zhurong, clearly not done yet. The rise of his right hand directed for him, preceded the shudder of the earth underfoot.
  190.  
  191. No... This was not geomancy... He was uprooting the ground through gravitational influence to offset the man's balance!
  192. Moments would be there was, before the violent toil of rock and charred debris propelled itself unto the cosmic pyromancer, intent on sending him into the distant treeline.
  193. (Ronin)
  194. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  195.  
  196. [03:16] Although this was only a spar, it seemed that Zhurong was putting in an extreme amount of effort. As he realized once again that Ronin remained standing, Zhurong gritted his teeth, forcing himself to stand up once more. Although he'd never looked down on the magic that the man he was battling practiced, he couldn't help but feel as if.. this was a bit ridiculous, was it not!?!
  197.  
  198. Raising his hand, a blaze lit up, engulfing his arm in flames, and he readied himself to strike out at the man.. only for him to rise into the air and raise a hand of his own.
  199.  
  200. And suddenly, Zhurong found the ground underneath him rising, the brittle soil falling apart rather easily due to his flames causing it to lose all of it's moisture. Stumbling, he then found himself flying through the air, propelled by the earth towards the few trees that had escaped being destroyed by their battle.
  201.  
  202. Smashing into the base of one said tree, he grunted in pain, adrenaline being theonly thing that could later carry him to his feet. Slow, deep, gasping breaths were audible as the field fell silent, the lack of flames and movement enveloping the area in an odd quiet.
  203.  
  204. A bead of sweat rolled from his eyebrows, down the side of his face, and as it reached his chin, he inhaled heavily, raising his head towards the sky.
  205.  
  206. Finally, the bead of sweat, glistening in the sunlight, dropped to the ground.
  207.  
  208. And Zhurong laughed.
  209.  
  210. "Wild applications of such abstract magics.. fascinating. Truly, truly, truly fascinating. This spar - no, this battle.. it's been some time since I've felt this ALIVE!"
  211. (Zhurong)
  212. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  213.  
  214. [03:34] Zhurong, in some ways, lived for battle. The feeling of exhilaration, the adrenaline, the knowledge that a mistake could completely turn the tides of a battle. He fucking loved it.
  215.  
  216. There was no better feeling than adrenaline and mana surging through his body, exerting his full power upon someone who dared to face it. At least, none that he'd yet found. A plan formed in his head. It was wild, stupid, and could lead to his untimely demise, but as long as he pulled it off correctly, it was the perfect way to end this.
  217.  
  218. Kicking off of the dirt behind him, an explosion of flames blasted him towards the man, damaging him due to the force they had generated. However, he couldn't care any less. His focus was wholeheartedly on this spar, and he'd make sure that it ended with a bang.
  219.  
  220. So, injured legs aside, the flaming drakanite /tackled/ his opponent as he floated in the sky. As they tumbled through the air, however, he did not letgo or try to attack more. No, his will would not allow him to give up on his plan now.
  221.  
  222. He'd see this through, as wild a plan as it was.
  223.  
  224. Below them, the Daemon, Ra, stood waiting. Its body was glowing a red color as if it was prepared to explode, the daemon vibrating rapidly as they approached.
  225.  
  226. Perhaps it was a foolish thing to do, but Zhurong.. well, he never hated being called a foolish man.
  227.  
  228. He poured the last remnants of his mana into the daemon as they approached, and, grinning, he spoke once more.
  229.  
  230. "Pretty good spar, aye?"
  231. (Zhurong)
  232. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  233.  
  234. [03:51] This was more than just flames...
  235. There was something powering it, surely it had something to do with the constructs of foreign feeling mana?
  236. It didn't quite resemble the same burning sensation he was learning.
  237.  
  238. He winced at the pain, but alas-- Came the climax to the duel. A flaming drakanite charged straight for Ronin, tackling him in the air. Where Zhurong attempting to cling tight, Ronin desperately sought to bat him off. The burning of direct contact urged him so!
  239. He flailed, he punched at Zhurong's gut, and even seemed to ebb just a bit more control in his favor!
  240.  
  241. Surely, the drakanite would not dare to budge... Yet, for whatever reason, refused to fight back!
  242.  
  243. "It wasn't your best idea to give me an OPPORTUNITY!" Ronin exclaimed, freeing his right arm to slap it into Zhurong's face, fingers splayed across their face.
  244. It burned him... But he was too determined to surrender just yet.
  245. It was never within him to give up, not while he had an inkling of a chance left.
  246.  
  247. Thus, it was in this moment that he recollected that sensation-- That he pried back that memory. The memory of burning so agonizingly. Though, he took to warping it... To emulating its polar opposite.
  248. The antipodal of a pyre's singe, was the artic frost of the northern gales.
  249.  
  250. It was through direct contact, that this artificially crafted memory could be forced unto Zhurong, as though to trigger a flashback to a memory he had never lived. It was brief, though with its dissipation came the crispy sting that frost was known for, splintering from Ronin's touch across Zhurong's face.
  251.  
  252. He was trying to counteract the drakanite's personal trigger for his pyromancy! He was trying to deactivate his powers... And through the means, of manipulating at his perception? Nay... He dared to challenge the mind itself.
  253.  
  254. The grin on his face, implied victory-- For he was certain in this crowning moment, he had won.
  255. He was certain, that by getting this position, he was capable of disabling his opponent, and bringing this brawl to a close...
  256.  
  257. But how he planned so short, when it came to his knowledge...
  258.  
  259. "Wait... THE DAEMON!" The sharp clutching at his chest as realization took him over, demanding that he peek over his shoulder to find Ra below them. It had been prying forth an abundance of mana within its reserve... For a final burst.
  260. The gap of Ronin's eyes, lasted only a moment... Before the flash of alabaster emanating from Ra took him and Zhurong alike.
  261.  
  262. When the light cleared...
  263. Ronin... The true Ronin, was lying on the ground, slowly regaining consciousness.
  264. Zhurong was above him, and grinning...
  265.  
  266. It was a good effort, but in the end, this was not his victory.
  267.  
  268. "Yes." He agreed, reaching up, fairly battered and bruised. He reached to catch the drakanite's hand this time, straining to pick himself up back to his feet.
  269.  
  270. "Good spar... Maybe, a bit far, but good spar."
  271. (Ronin)
  272. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  273.  
  274. [03:58] "Ah.. yeah, I may have gotten a bit too excited. Heh."
  275.  
  276. A cough escaped him, and he collapsed. Perhaps he really had exerted himself too much. As his vision slowly darkened, he would've laughed if he had the energy.
  277.  
  278. Yeah. Far too much.
  279. (Zhurong)
  280. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  281.  
  282. [03:59] Ronin says, "Heh... Heheh... We should really get some rest."
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