G2A Many GEOs

Chapter 10

Magus_Anon Sep 1st, 2018 1,876 Never
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  1.     You sat on the bench that had been dragged over for your sake. It was almost night now in the elven city. The preparations for the attack had long since been completed; now the city waited in silence for the first foe to appear.
  3.     After you had crushed the cheval de frise with your magic, the elves seemed content with your magical skill. Fuck yeah, magical talent. That was definitely something to smile about. The only problem is that you had no idea how to keep yourself from getting light headed after using magic. Breaking the drinking glass had made you a bit dizzy, but crushing the barricade had made your vision swim and your feet threaten to fail you. The elves were quick to bring you a bench and a snack, which was sorely needed. Casting magic worked up quite the appetite.
  5.     Arsofina sat next to you, kicking her feet back and forth as she stared into space. Obviously she was not in the talking mood. Then again, neither were you. While you certainly wanted to learn magic, you really hoped that you didn’t have to blow anyone up. Images of soldiers bursting into clouds of gore played over and over in your mind. Were the elves even the good guys? The drawings they had made looked plenty spooky, but that doesn’t mean that they were inherently evil.
  7.     Actually, it probably did in this world. When had anything seven feet tall with horns and batwings ever had a communities best interests at heart? Never, besides the MGs on your Laotian claymation publishing site.
  9.     The memory of the encyclopedia caused you to jolt upright. Come to think of it, this entire world bore a striking resemblance to the world in the books. The haughty elves, (well, that wasn’t exactly a ground-breaking concept…), the drawing of what could have easily been an amazon, the fact that you had managed to survive for perhaps a week in the forest with no training… it was all coming together! In fact, one of the first things you had encountered was a lady in a flower! The fruit that had made you sick must have been a prisoner fruit!
  11.     But if it was, why would it make you sick? Why had you not been violently raped while walking through what was probably a green demon realm? You settled back down onto the seat. Maybe this really WAS the MGE world. It was so close, but there were just a few things that didn’t add up, a few missing pieces of evidence that would confirm that you had really made it. You wracked your brain for any information you could remember about monsters. Which was quite a bit, after years of threads. If that really was the case, you had a huge advantage. A knowledge of all the species, some flora, and general trivia about the world around you.
  13.     It was a shame that you couldn’t look up the exact facts anymore. From now on, what you couldn’t remember would have to be learned. And one mistake would mean being pinned under a monster for the rest of your life. Funny, you had devoted so much time to MGE, but as soon as you arrived in this world, the girls who had occupied your thoughts for years had taken a backseat to survival. Even in Oreath, they hadn’t crossed your mind. You were more worried about your family, but had mourned for them enough. This strange new world filled you with an alien effervescence that made being sad for long periods of time impossible.
  15.     Arsofina gave you a curious look as you sat up, but you waved your hand to show it was nothing. She gave a shrug and went back to watching the gate.
  17.     If this is MGE, what would your end goal be? Sure getting a wife was probably priority uno, as getting dragged into a cave or pit of slime did NOT sound like the best way to spend your halcyon days. Even if you were going to be clam slammed to the brink of death every night, you still wanted to explore your magical talents. See just what you could do. Should you go for something strong? A dragon or a lich would be prime candidates for upping your powers and keeping you safe at the same time. It would be nice to have some autonomy though. And the idea of fucking a corpse was suddenly much less appealing now that it was a possibility. Maybe something more diminutive? Damn, this was hard. Not only would you have to make a decision about your life partner in a VERY short amount of time, but you would also have to traverse miles of unknown terrain and fend off hordes of other women to even have a chance of wiafuing your idea girl. There wasn’t even a guarantee that you would be accepted.
  19.     You chuckle. Ok, your chances of getting accepted were very high as long as you didn’t go for a monster who got off to martial arts. No salamanders, lizards or hinzumis for you. Not yet at least, who knows, you may be swinging a sword around in a few years.
  20. If this was MGE. Once again your fantasy is interrupted by the ugly reality that the ‘amazons’ outside may just break in, eat your ribcage, and use your body and intestines as a maypole. Hope it’s MGE.
  22.     A cry of alarm sounds out from the wall. The elves draw their arrows and take places on the wall. Three guards bound down a staircase with inhuman agility and sprint off across the courtyard. In the distance, a long flat note of a horn breaks the silence.
  24. This is it.
  26.     You look down at your hands an realize just how much they are trembling. Reaching up to your face, you wipe away the sheen of nervous sweat from your face and take a deep breath. Were you really ready for this? It’s not like you were a soldier or anything. Once the fight broke out you would be wholly dependent on magic to carry you through.
  28. “Ok, ok, I can do this, easy Anon, this will work itself out one way or another…”
  30. You almost jump out of your skin when Arsofina puts a reassuring hand on your shoulder. Yeah. Ok, you can do this. Easy, nothing to it. Just point and blast.
  32.     From the wall the guard captain barked an order. The elves drew back their arrows, and with another shout fired them over the wall. From the other side, a howl of pain sounded. It was haunting, like someone took an opera singers voice and lowered it one octave to many. Unmistakably feminine, but much lower than it had any right to be.
  34.     The guard captain shouted again, and the elves drew back. This time, the enemy was prepared. Before the captain could order them to fire, a wave of stars rose above the wall. Tiny pinpricks of light that flickered in the moonlight. The captain screamed something but the noise was drowned out by the sound of arrows crashing into the wall and the elves atop it. Several crumpled and collapsed, grasping at wounds. To your horror, it appeared that some of the arrows had passed clean through the elves. Those who had avoided the enemy’s onslaught released their arrows and reloaded. But more and more arrows began to fly over the wall and into the city. The invaders were apparently less keen on firing in volleys. Projectiles flew in sporadic bursts, often flying over the spot where an elf had just shot back.
  36.     As the army advanced, you couldn’t help but notice that the arrows were getting progressively closer to your position. You felt so useless. You couldn’t even help the medics evacuate the wounded. A pair of elves rushed past you with a gurney, and you got a glimpse of the body atop it.
  38.     She was sleeping peacefully, with a thin trickle of drool running down her cheek. How?! You just saw her get impaled with a gigantic arrow! It didn’t even look like she had hit her head hard enough to be knocked unconscious, she appeared to be in perfect health.
  40. Could it be demon silver?
  42. You jump back as an arrow that would look more at home on a ballista embeds itself into the dirt a few feet in front of you. You take a hesitant step forwards and pull it out.
  44.     The shaft is a work of art. Nearly two inches around, there isn’t a single space that has not being carved. The shaft depicts everything from women hunting boars to shooting their enemies. Near the top, a carving larger than the rest depicts a woman in a triumphant pose holding an arrow aloft. Behind her, a man is kneeling and holding his hands up in reverence to her. Upon closer inspection, the carvings appear to spiral up the shaft and tell a story. Only closer to the fletching do the hieroglyphs become focused on violence against others rather than hunting or a depiction of what appears to be a rustic lifestyle. At the base, the woman is gesturing to a man who is apparently scornful of her. She is much smaller than the woman at the top. An entire life carved into a single arrow shaft. Brushing off some dirt you try to wipe off the arrow head.
  46. Arsofina quickly snatches the arrow away from you and throws it over her shoulder. She also gives you a gentle slap on the back of your head and points towards the gate.
  48. Oh well, there will be more arrows for you to look at later. Arsofina was right, focus on not getting killed first.
  49. The elves seemed to be doing quite well. While many had fallen, the majority of the guard were unharmed and returning fire. Magic casters had begun to weave spells, but whether they were defensive or offensive in nature you had no idea. Unfortunately, the invaders seemed to have magic of their own. Occasionally a reddish-brown tentacle would rise up and clash with a barrier put up by the elves. Explosions of color shimmered up and down the wall. It was awe inspiring.
  51. The wind was knocked from your lungs as Arsofina dove into you, taking the both of you to the ground. Looking up from underneath her, you could see an arrow quivering in the ground where you had been standing.
  53. {PAY ATTENTION DUMMY!} said Arsofina.
  55. You mumbled an embarrassed apology and dusted yourself off. You really needed to stop racking up consecutive life debts to this elf.
  56. The sound of boots on the cobble stone behind you shifted your attention away from the wall. A small contingent of elves hurried up to you and gave a short nod to Arosfina.
  58. {We need Anon at the rear wall, the amazons are attacking in force!} said a guard.
  60. {Are you insane?! Look at the gate! The front is here!} said Arosfina.
  62. {Not anymore. We’re about to be overrun! He’s coming with us…} said the guard. She moved around Arsofina and made a grab for your hand.
  63. Arsofina put a hand on her shoulder and pulled her back.
  65. {There’s no attack at the rear wall! We haven’t heard a thing all night from that side of the city! The updates we’ve received say that the amazons have yet to muster any sort of fighting force at a location other than the front gate!}
  67. {Well, they’re massing now.} said the guard shaking herself out of Arsofina’s grip. She grabbed your hand and told you to come in a rough tone.
  69. {No! You aren’t taking him an-} Arsofina’s protests were cut short as another guard landed a sucker punch on her cheek. She reeled and fell back onto the road with a dazed look in her eye.
  71. Oh hell no.
  73. {Shut up! They may not be overrunning us at the back wall, but they’re going to overrun us here. There are a few back there, a few who just made a deal to end the siege if we just get rid of the human. Look around you, Arsofina! All this carnage is your fault! You just couldn-}
  75. Now it was the guards turn to be interrupted. While she had been talking, you had channeled magical energy with surprising ease and managed to form a sort of geyser of energy under the squad. They screamed as the burst of energy flung them ten feet in the air. With a series of dull thuds they landed on the cold paving stones. Only two were conscious enough to begin to pick themselves up, but they were severely injured.
  77. You turned to Arsofina and offered her a hand. She stared, mouth agape at the pile of guards loudly moaning in the street. For the first time since you had met her, she looked a bit fearful of you. Even if they had hurt her, they were still her friends…
  79. You begin to pull back your hand, but she catches it as it retracts.
  81. “Thanuk yhue” she say with her head turned to the side.
  83. However, it seems that instead of you helping her up, she has other plans. She slowly begins to pull you forwards. How was she so strong?
  85. “Anon!” she cried.
  87. Oh. Wait. That was you leaning onto her and passing out. Arsofina quickly drags you over to the bench and seats you on it. After a few seconds of balancing you so that you do not slide off or faceplant, she lets you go with a sigh.
  91. You can see the guard captain sprinting up to Arsofina with a few veteran guards in tow.
  93. {A human is barely tolerable to begin with, but one that BRINGS AN ARMY OF DEMONS INTO OUR REALM and BETRAYS THE PEOPLE WHO SAVED HIM is beyond reproach! Guards! Throw this vermin over the wall, head first please.}
  95.     Arsofina began to protest again but one of the guards grabbed her from behind, securing her limbs at her side and lifting her off of the ground. She thrashed and kicked at the guard holding her, but was no match for his strength. You desperately wanted to help her, but were still feeling weak in the knees from launching the other corrupt guards a moment earlier.
  97. You are powerless to stop two of the guards as they seize an arm a piece and yank you forwards. Their pace is too quick for you to even plant your feet and they begin leading your stumbling body towards the wall.
  99.     Unfortunately, the wall was in a much more sordid state of affairs than it had been a moment ago. The attackers must have made quite the push. The elven guard had suffered heavy casualties as their superior range had been taken from them. The wall was now crowded with slumped over figures; though there was an uncanny lack of blood amidst the crumpled forms. The remaining elves were either shooting straight down off of the wall, or hacking away at ropes that had been thrown over the wall. You watched in horror as an elf frantically tried to sever a rope, only to be grabbed by a large muscular arm and pulled over the wall with a shriek.
  101. The gate was taking a beating as well. Axes worked to split the thick wood, and already a few holes had been made. Torch light from the city mingled with the light brought by the invaders.
  103. {Shit! They’re coming over the walls! Just dump him in front of the gate and let’s get out of here!}
  105.     The guard holding your right arm gives you a shove towards the gate and retreats back into the city. The woman holding your left arm begins to protest, but a loud crack from the door and the excited cheers of the barbarians behind it prompt her to retreat as well.
  106. For the first time you see a glimpse of your foe. Just for an instant, you lock eyes with a massive woman with tanned skin and silvery hair accentuated by a single horn. Her torso is wrapped in tattoos that seem to shimmer in the torchlight. Across her face is a gleeful grin, but as she sees you her joyful visage contorts into a perplexed stare. Her deep, maroon eyes gaze back at you through the small gap in the gate. As she stares, her face changes from confusion to a sadistic sneer.
  108. {I SEE HIM!! HE’S RIGHT INSIDE THE GATE!!} She bellowed.
  110. You take a step back. Her voice was the same haunting pitch that you had heard earlier.
  112. More faces filled the gaps in the splintered wood. The gate took on an appearance of some bizarre eldritch creature made of eyes and timber. With renewed vigor, the women set to work tearing down your last vestige of protection.
  114. “Ok, ok, I can do this… I can do this…”
  116. You raised your arms and pointed your palms at the gate. Easy Anon, just wait until they come and blast them, it’ll be over in a second, everything is fine…
  118. A roar from above you caused you to jerk your head back. A warrior had made it over the wall and had leapt off the wall towards you. The remaining elves were too busy to offer any aid; you were on your own.
  120.     She landed with a jarring thud about fifteen feet away from you. It was clear from this distance that this woman was MUCH larger than the elves. She stood at least six and a half feet tall and must have weighed close to three hundred pounds. She was lean, but the definition on her muscles was incredible. Almost too perfect. Like someone had carved it without the flaws inherent to mortal beings.
  122. Probably because she was clearly not a mortal.
  124.     This woman had the same singular horn sprouting from the right side of her head. A leathery wing jutted out from the small of her back, too small to fly. A thin, cordlike tail hung behind her, flicking back and forth. She wore an amalgamation of pelts and cloth, haphazardly stitched together to offer some protection against the elven arrows.
  126.     You registered all of these aspects of her physical appearance, but your conscious mind was more focused on the massive machete she was holding. It was at least three and a half feet long, but suited her size well. Even in the torchlight, you could see it shimmer with a faint lustrous finish. It reminded you of oil in a puddle, a hazy sheen that clung to the surface of the blade.
  128. Unlike the other women, she has an uninterested look on her face. She is completely unfazed by the chaos around her.
  130. {You… what manner of human are you? Small and pale, from whence do you hail, little human?}
  132. You point your palms out at her. You may not know exactly what she was saying, but you knew that there was only one way that this was going to end.
  134. To your dismay, she merely grins at your token act of defiance.
  136. {Ooh, so you can use magic. My sisters and I could see the flare from outside the wall, but we never suspected that a human was responsible. You are quite the prize. I look forwards to… ‘extracting’ the whereabouts of your people from you.}
  138. You took a deep breath and tried to channel power into your hands.
  140. She frowned. {Mmm? No words for your foe? Pity. I did so want to hear what your voice sounded like. Though I shall hear plenty from you as I CRUSH YOU BENEATH ME!~}
  142. As she finished, her muscular legs launched her towards you. To make matters worse, the first of the invaders had already made it through the destroyed gate.
  144. Acting on instinct, you throw up your hands in defense. As the woman closes the distance with rightful speed, an arrow whistles over your shoulder and embeds itself into her left arm. She grunts and stops but is far from incapacitated. Arsofina appears beside you with another arrow already nocked.
  146. {ANON DO SOMETHING!} she screamed.
  150.     The monster snapped the arrow in half in her shoulder and began lumbering towards you again. Arsofina fired again, but the woman merely shifted so that the arrow landed in the thick mass of pelts she wore. Reaching down, she grabbed a chunk of wood and hurled it at Arsofina.
  152.     The piece of lumber caught her of guard and there was a dull thud as it hit her wrist. Arsofina cried out in pain as a thin trickle of blood seeped down her hand. Her wrist was bent at a strange angle.
  154. “NO!” Your panicked cry was involuntary. Rage and fear boiled inside you. Arsofina had been hurt on your behalf for the last time.
  156. {YOU’RE NEXT HUMAN!} screamed the amazon. She lurched forwards with her machete raised. Behind her, you could see the others running towards you; all with the same sickening predatory gaze.
  158.     The unfamiliar power of magic welled up in your hands once more. There was no time to craft a precise spell, but then again, this was not an occasion for a precise spell. Mustering every ounce of energy you had, you focused your being into a single command against the material realm: push.
  160.     There was a blinding light in front of you. The light burned your eyes. Your palms felt like they were melting off. A shockwave lifted the amazon in front of you off her feet and threw her screaming fifteen feet in the air. The war party behind her suffered a similar fate as the ripple ravaged their ranks. Several elves were tossed aside, even farther than the amazons. Several were knocked from their positions on the wall, falling over the far side or backwards into the city. The amazon in front of you, the one who had taken the brunt of the blast landed with a sickening crunch near the rest of the invaders.
  162. Your ears were ringing. Your whole body felt too heavy. A stream of blood ran down your face. The world swam and began to fade as you struggled to keep your footing.
  164. ~~~~~~~
  166. “By the Ancestors! He’s a revenant! Spirits preserve us he isn’t a human he’s a spirit of vengeance! Fall back damnit!” Yamazi screamed as she fled across the field.
  168.     The rest of the amazons were not as quick to follow her, still stunned by the blast. They staggered and swayed as they rose, and began to follow Yamazi out into the darkness. A stream of wounded amazons, in various states of consciousness poured out of the city, dragging their wounded and nursing their injuries. Fortunately for them, the few elves that had survived the initial assault unscathed were caught in the explosion as well. The procession of wounded women was unimpeded by arrows or swords.
  170. A particularly large amazon rushed forwards to scoop up the woman who had been directly in front of Anon. Cradling her, she stood to look at Anon, who was now being supported by Arsofina.
  172. “Damn you spirit! Return to your world and torment us no longer! If we cross paths again, I will banish you myself for what you have done to my tribe!”
  174.     With that Madari turned and limped away with her daughter, quickly becoming lost in the parade of bloodied clothing and agonized wails.
  176.     Arsofina watched them go. It wasn’t until after the last amazon had disappeared from view did she realize that she had been holding her breath. As her adrenaline faded, the throbbing pain in her broken wrist caused her to wince and double over in pain.
  178. “Rgggh… damn. Shit, this hurts. At least we did it. You really came through for us huh Anon?” she turned to look at him, but Anon merely crumpled and fell over. Blood was leaking out of his nose. His eyes were bloodshot. The sleeves on his shirt and the bracers that had been given to him had been torn to shreds.
  180. “Anon!” Arsofina rolled him onto his back but he made no response. Gently touching his neck, she felt his pulse as an erratic and infrequent beat, a whisper. His breathing came in shallow gasps.
  182. “Anon no! No, no, no! What’s wrong! Speak to me, please!” she pleaded.
  184. She lifted his head off of the ground and scooted her legs under him to rest his head in her lap. Tears welled in her eyes as she hugged his bloodied face.
  186. “I’ll be damned. I didn’t think he had it in him.”
  188. Arsofina looked up to see Stellora approaching. Her armor was spattered with blood, but she looked unharmed.
  190. “You did this to him.” growled Arsofina.
  192. “No, I didn’t. He did that to himself. Oreath wanted the amazons gone, and I wanted him gone. Looks like your human pet there solved all our problems at once.” said Stellora.
  193. “How could you say that! He saved us! Why can’t you show an ounce of respect!?” said Arsofina.
  195. “Yeah, well, you can tell the elves he blew away that he ‘saved’ them. He caused as many casualties in one second than the amazons did during the course of the attack! Not to mention the collateral damage!” retorted Stellora.
  197. “He panicked because you were too cowardly to fight! You had to send him to fight for you!” said Arsofina.
  199. Stellora clenched her fists and gritted her teeth. “Why you insolent little cunt; I’ll have you hanged for treason! Don’t you dare insinuate that that ANIMAL has more courage than me. The first thing I’m going to do after the city is repaired is have you hanged for treason.”
  201. She began to advance on Arsofina but a squad of scholars, doctors, and priests spilled out of their hiding places to tend to the wounded. Lythris and several priests crowded around them. They pulled Arsofina up and began to frantically inspect Anon.
  203. “By the Chief God’s wings, I’ve never seen magic feedback burns this bad before.” said one of the priests. She rolled Anon’s hand over to reveal a bright red palm.
  205. “His vital signs are weak, and dropping. We need to get him to the medical ward. We need a stretcher!”
  207. A pair of elves quickly fetched a stretcher and the crowd lifted Anon onto it. The group split up to collect various reagents and magical remedies from the apothecary’s workshop, the temple, and even market shops. The last bit might actually just be stealing.
  209. As Arsofina watched them go, she saw Lady Irin herself walking through the carnage towards her escorted by her guard. Irin watched as Anon was rushed past her before continuing on.
  211. Arsofina was sitting on the ground, clutching her knees to her chest with her good arm. Tears were running down her face and she was sniffling and rocking back and forth ever so gently.
  213. Irin strode up to her with open arms. “Oh, Arsofina my dear. It’s alright. Come here.” Irin pulled her into a tight embrace and stroked her hair. “Shh… he will be fine. They will take good care of him.”
  215. Arsofina reciprocated the hug as best she could with one arm. Stellora coughed.
  217. “Captain Stellora. Well done during the first part of the assault.” said Irin.
  220. “The first part?! We held the amazons off! You don’t think there are more coming do you?”
  222. “No, the amazons are very superstitious. It was their shaman who called them away. They worship their ancestors and Ares. Clearly they have never seen a human like Anon, and took him to be a spirit of vengeance. Also, it was Anon who rid the city of amazons was it not?”
  224. Stellora’s face reddened and she averted her gaze. “Well, he did help. But we weakened them! There’s no way he could have done that without OUR help.”
  226. “Oh? Is that so?” said Irin in a coy tone. “Because knowing you Stellora you probably already said something like “good thing he died just like the amazons” or “at least he had the decency to fix the problem he created,” no?”
  228. Stellora was silent.
  230. “As I thought. Arsofina and Anon are hereby absolved of any criminal charges that Oreath may try to place on them. I will not have them tried for treason, or any other offence against the crown, city, or Chief God. Is that clear captain?”
  232. “Yes Milady.” murmured Stellora.
  234. “Very good! Now, we have an arduous task ahead of us, so let us put aside our hate and rebuild what we have lost.” said Irin in a cheery tone. “Arsofina, why don’t you go get your arm tended to?”
  236. The elves went their separate ways as the citizens and guards of Oreath began to extinguish the fires and clear away the rubble.
  238. ~~~~~~~
  240.     A day and a half after the attack on Oreath, Taraxa arrived with the pair of human professors in tow. Never before had she been so excited to be amongst elves again. The humans had been insufferably cheery and insisted on talking every step of the way. A ceaseless stream of inane questions about elves, about the human, what was the region like, are you single… there was just no end to it. To make matters worse, at night they fucked like rabbits. Taraxa had to sleep yards away from the camp and plug her ears to get a decent night’s sleep. They never seemed tired in the morning either. To them field work seemed like a vacation.
  242. At least they had made good time. Taraxa was worried that she would have to carry some senile old man miles through the forest on her back. But the humans were unnaturally adept at moving through the forest. They had arrived at Oreath a week before Taraxa had anticipated. Well, she may have exaggerated just how slowly humans move when she was planning the journey but the fact remained, Oreath was in view ahead of schedule.
  244. “Ooh! Look! Look! There it is! Isn’t it gorgeous?” said Pyritta
  246. “It sure is darling. Almost as beautiful as you.~” said her husband, who’s name you now know was Halitt.
  248. “Oh Halitt!~” swooned Pyritta as she embraced him.
  250. The couple began another fierce make-out session, unswayed by Traxa's presence. It was their third today. It wasn’t even noon yet.
  252. Fucking humans.
  254. “Can we PLEASE just get there already?! I need a long bath…” said Taraxa
  256. They managed to disentangle their faces and continue their march towards the city.
  258.     As they got closer, Taraxa could immediately tell something was wrong. There were far too many guards posted for this time of day, and the gates to the city were lying next to the entry way outside the city walls. As they neared the walls, Taraxa could see that the gates were riddled with holes, and had been destroyed. The roofs of the houses near the gate had scorch marks. The street was littered with debris. Out in the field, arrows stuck out at odd angles, all having been launched away from the city.
  260. “What happened?” whispered Taraxa to herself.
  262. The humans were for once silent. They seemed to appreciate the implications of what was around them, and Taraxa was eternally grateful for their silence.
  264. As they arrived at the gate, well, the giant hole in the wall, the guard stopped them and demanded their identities and reason for entry.
  266. Taraxa furnished the decree she had been given by Irin and the trio were allowed inside. Just inside the gate there was a group of priests waiting for them.
  268. “Wait here please, we need to ensure that you are untainted.” said a priest.
  270. Taraxa waited as the priest preformed a spell that detected demonic energy on each of them individually.
  272. “What happened here?” Asked Taraxa as the priest finished up with Halitt.
  274. “Amazon invasion. Can you believe it? The human Arsofina took in lured ‘em here, all the way from across the Akarondi.” said a guard.
  276. “What?! Amazons?! Seriously? How did we survive? How many of them were there?” asked Taraxa in disbelief.
  278. “There were about three score of them. Took down a few of them from the wall, but the savages were damn good shots. Had a demon arrow slide right through me, strangest sensation of my life.” said another guard.
  280. “Did we lose anyone?” said Taraxa.
  282. “Not a soul if you can believe it. I think they wanted to be careful. Didn’t know where the human was and didn’t want to risk leveling the town with him in it. He actually hurt more elves in the blast than the amazons did in the whole night.”
  284. “Blast? He?”
  286. “Aww you forgot the best part Myosoti! It was the human that sent ‘em packin’! Pulled some top shelf destructive magic out of his ass and blew the whole lot of em’ back out the gate! Turns out they think he’s a ghost or something, so they just ran away after he knocked them over.”
  288. Taraxa rubbed her chin. “So, the human can use magic?”
  290. “Well, maybe not anymore. Poor bastard fried himself pretty bad. Depleted so much magic so fast that he put himself in a coma. I believe it too, seeing what he did.”
  292. “Fuck. PLEASE tell me that I didn’t drag these humans all the way out here just to pick up a corpse.” said Taraxa.
  294. “Nah, like I said coma. He’ll probably make it. They’ve been dumping energy and food into him since it happened.” said one of the guards.
  296. “If you say so. Not like it’s my problem any more. Where shall I take them?” said Taraxa pointing a thumb at the pair of professors behind her.
  298. “Lady Irin is meeting you in the medical ward. We’ve already notified her of your arrival, so I’d go straight there if I were you.”
  300. “Can we stop by the market first? It looks like there is some delectable looking produce in some of those stalls.” said Pyritta.
  302. “No.” said Taraxa
  304. “Can we see the library on the way out?” asked Halitt
  306. “No.”
  308. “The apothecary? I bet they know dozens of treatments that the people of Stream’s Edge could benefit from.”
  310. “No. Now come on let’s go.”
  312. Taraxa started to walk away, but the humans were insistent on sightseeing.
  314. “Is there anyone who would be willing to let us see the inside of their home? These tree houses look so comfy!”
  316. “NO. Please, we’re so close, just walk the rest of the distance in silence.”
  318. There was an awkward pause. The elves in the market square gawked at them as they passed by.
  320. “Is there any store that sells lingerie? Something lacy and cute like the panties you’re wearing?” asked Pyritta
  322. “YOU CAN SEE MY FOOT COMING OUT YOUR MOUTH AFTER I KICK YOUR ASS! HUH?! HOW’D YOU LIKE TO SEE THAT?! NO? THEN WALK.” screamed Taraxa. Whether her face was red with rage or embarrassment is debated to this day.
  324. ~~~~~~
  326.     The trio entered the medical building and walked to the end of the hall. It was easy to see which room Anon was in. Guards flanked the entrance to the room, and two more protected the main entrance to the building itself. Seeing Taraxa and the humans, they stepped to the side a bit to allow them entry. The room was crowded. Alongside Irin was Arsofina, Lythris, and a few doctors scribbling out notes above a figure lying supine on the bed. The doctors made the last of their notes and shuffled out the door without a word.
  328. “Lady Irin, the human scientists you sent for.” one said.
  330. “Ara, welcome to Oreath. I am Lady Irin, steward of this fair land.” said Irin with a small bow.
  332. “I am Professor Pyritta Marric, and this is my husband, Halitt Marric.” said Pyritta.
  334. “Pleased to meet you.” said Halitt.
  336. “And these are some of my associates who have been helping me tend to and lean about Anon; Arsofina and Lythris.” said Irin.
  338. “A pleasure to meet you they said in unison.”
  340. “Thank you so much for coming all this way, but as you may have heard, Anon is incapacitated at the moment.” Irin stepped aside and let them through to the bed. “As you can see, Oreath came under attack two days ago. Anon used magic to defeat the invading amazons, but the stress on his body was too much. He has been unconscious since just this morning, when he awoke for only a few moments. Oh, Taraxa thank you for bringing them; you are dismissed.”
  342. “Thank the Chief God. I’ll be in the bath with a hot meal if you need me.” she said with a little wave as she walked out the door.
  344. “Incredible…” murmured Pyritta.
  346. “Nothing I’ve ever seen, you?” said Halitt.
  348. “His skin is so pale! How much magic did he use? This kind of pigment loss tends to take weeks of nonstop magic use before something like this happens.”
  350. “No, that’s just how he looks. I found him like that. His skin was red and blistered in some spots though, but I think that it was probably an allergy or something.” said Arsofina.
  352. Pyritta slung her pack off of her shoulder and pulled out a large book. “Let’s see… the closest thing to a ‘human with pale skin’ I can think of in the history books I have is a tribe that used to live in the deciduous forests far to the northeast. The records also note that their bloodlines possessed powerful magic.”
  354. “How far to the northeast? Is his tribe in demon-controlled territory?” asked Irin.
  356. “Well, it wasn’t when these people were alive…” said Halitt.
  358. “What do you mean?” asked Lythris.
  360. “All records we have of the tribe, which isn’t much, comes from scraps about how they were beaten by a coalition of surrounding tribes. After that, it says, and I quote: “their bloodlines were culled from existence by superior seed and egg. After a single life season, (that means generation), there were none who possessed the skin of ghosts or the eyes of sky.” So basically, a bunch of people banded together to rape them so hard that their kids no longer resembled them.”
  362. “Gods…” said Arsofina.
  364. “And their eyes, it says they had blue eyes?” asked Lythris.
  366. “Yes, but as I said, these people have been extinct for a LONG time.” said Pyritta.
  368. “How long? Is it possible that some of them survived to flee?” asked Arsofina.
  370. “Well, considering that they were exterminated eight hundred years before the current demon lord rose to power, and they lived a stone-throw away from the heart of the demon realms, I’d say no. The children of the… forced intimacies may have lived on, but there is no mention beyond that of any humans with pale skin or blue eyes anywhere else. Even then they would have been some of the first to fall to monster invasion.”
  372. “Well then where did he come from?” asked Arsofina.
  374. “Honestly? I have no idea. Is there anything else you can tell us about him?” asked Pyritta.
  376. “Well, his clothes are made of a material that none of us have ever seen before, he doesn’t speak, read or write in common, his language is phonetic, and he had no idea that he could do magic until a few days ago.” summarized Lythris.
  378. Pyritta and Halitt stared at her and then at each other.
  380. “May we see the data you have collected on him?” asked Pyritta.
  382. ~~~~~~~
  384.     The next few hours were spent going over the piles of notes that had been taken during Anon’s stay. His language, his alphabet, all the crude drawings he had made and the elves interpretations of the drawings, all was spread out across the small table. By sundown, the pair of humans had a much better understanding of Anon. As the last of the light faded, they were shown to their room in the medical building and retired for the night.
  386. The following morning, Pyritta and Halitt were awoken by a guard.
  388. “He’s awake, just thought I’d let you know. Lythris and Arsofina are already waiting for you.”
  390. Anon scarcely moved as they burst into the room. His eyes were wide, but he made no motion with any other part of his body.
  392. Pyritta rushed over to him, but realized that she had no idea what to say.
  394. “Dear, wh-what should I say?” she whispered
  396. “What do you mean? Just say hello and introduce yourself.” said Halitt
  398. Pyritta pulled a small piece of paper form her pocket and began to read aloud.
  400. “Hee-loo, may nam ees Pyritta.” she said.
  402. Anon let out a snerk and a hoarse laugh.
  404. {Nice to meet you, I’m Anon.} he said weakly.
  406. Pyritta squealed and did a little tap dance. “Oh this is so exciting! I want to hear more of his language, but that can wait. It took a lot of time and effort to find one of these, but… ta da!” she said producing a necklace from her pack.
  408. “What is it?” asked Arsofina.
  410. It was a simple golden chain that was only slightly worn with age. The chain supported a small cloudy marble that shimmered between crimson and silver.
  412. “This, is an amulet of articulation. Not many of these around anymore. Ever since common became a universal language, any business conducted between two people is simple. In the olden days, humans needed to either hire a translator or get their hands on one of these to do something as simple as ask where the bathroom was. It’s a lost art, no one knows how to make these anymore.” said Pyritta.
  414. Arsofina took it into her hands and rolled the pendant between her fingers.
  416. “How does it work?” she asked.
  418. Anon nearly jumped out of the bed. With a grunt he propped himself up against the head board and stared, mouth agape at Arsofina.
  420. “Like that I guess.” said Halitt. “We’ve never actually used it before. If you can speak common, everything people say just sounds like common, even if they speak it in a different language.”
  422. “You can speak English?!” asked Anon.
  424. Now Arsofina was baffled. Anon’s common speech no longer sounded like an amalgamation of poorly pronounced words in a strange order, but perfect common. As if it’s the only thing he’d ever spoken.
  426. “Y-yeah, I guess…” she said, a bit taken by this new turn of events.
  428. “Is it the necklace?” he asked.
  430. “Yeah, it-it is…” she said.
  432. “Can they understand me?” asked Anon.
  434. Arsofina became aware that everyone was staring at her intently.
  436. “Arsofina. We want to hear what he’s saying too. Just give him the amulet.” said Lythris.
  438. “Oh, right.” She offered it to Anon. “Wear this Anon.”
  440. Anon snatched the necklace out of her hand and put it on.
  442. “Well?” asked Pyritta.
  444. Anon’s face broke into a goofy grin. He let out a sigh, that transformed into a laugh. Craning his head back he laid back against the head board with his eyes closed.
  446. “Yeah, yeah this works just fine.” he said.
  448. “Are you crying?” asked Arsofina.
  450. Anon lifted his hands up to wipe his eyes. “Guess I am. Never thought I’d hear {English} ever again.”
  452. “Is that what your language is called? Inglich?” asked Pyritta.
  454. “Yeah, you know, what you’re speaking?”
  456. “Well, technically, you’re speaking common. To us, you sound like everyone else now. You’re the only one being affected by the amulet.” said Halitt.
  458. “Oh.” Anon looked a bit disappointed. “Oh well, as long as I can talk I’ll be fine.”
  460. “It will certainly make learning to read easier!” said Pyritta cheerfully.
  462. “Wait, what? I still can’t read?”
  464. “Err, no, the amulet of articulation only effects how you perceive spoken languages. Reading is entirely different.”
  466. “Anon, I’m sorry to interrupt, but I’ve been dying to know where you are from since you arrived here.” said Lythris.
  468. “Oh, yeah, I’m from {Maine}.”
  470. The room was silent.
  472. “Oh, Mayehn. Of course. Where is that again…?” asked Lythris.
  474. “It’s the northeast most state in the Unite- wait what the hell am I saying! I fucking died! I don’t even know where I am!”
  476. “You… died?” asked Irin
  478. “You were lost in the jungle for a while. You probably had some bad hallucinations. But you didn’t die.” said Arsofina.
  480. “No, no no no no. Even before the jungle, I got sucked into a hole and got spat out in… this world. I either warped here or died; I'm sure of it.” Anon reached under his mattress and produced his wallet. The elves crowded around Anon as he opened it up.
  482. “Whats that?” asked Lythris.
  484. “I saw him pull that out a few times in the jungle. I think it’s a little pocket-pocket. Seems kind of counter-intuitive to me.” said Arsofina.
  486. “It’s a wallet. Not much in it, but…” Anon laid out the contents on the bed. “Hopefully this can convince you that the place I came from and the place I am now are not separated by mere physical boundaries.”
  488. The elves took some of the plastic cards while the pair of professors took some of the bills.
  490. “Impossible… the intricacies on these papers is something even a master could not create…” said Pyritta
  492. “Is this currency?” asked Halitt waving the twenty at you.
  494. “It was. Not worth much here I would imagine.”
  496. “On the contrary! Every creature interested in human civilization would kill to get there hands on something like this!” said Pyritta examining the single.
  498. “Yeah, I guess, but I don’t want to just surrender the last vestiges of my home just yet. Oh, Halitt, hold that one up to the light.”
  500. While the couple ooed and ahhd at the water marks, the elves were busy inspecting the cards.
  502. “What are these? More money?” asked Arsofina staring at your rewards card.
  504. “Well, kind of. The one Irin is h-“
  506. “Lady Irin.” said Lythris without looking up
  508. Anon stared at her. “The one LADY Irin is holding is a card that was linked to my bank account.”
  510. “Linked? You mean it was enchanted to fetch money?” asked Irin.
  512. “Well, in a way yes. We didn’t have magic in my world, but we built machines that could keep track of money even of there was no physical exchange of currency. The only thing that happened was some numbers were subtracted from my account and added to theirs.”
  514. “How exciting! So you just sent the card for the funds and it would take care of it?” asked Irin.
  516. “No, you just ran the card through a thin slot in their machine. That was it. The card Lythris has is similar, but the money came from a line of credit instead of my own account.”
  518. “Fascinating… the transfer of currency without magic or physical interaction. How did it work if not by mana?” asked Lythris.
  520. “We used electricity to power everything. We generated the electricity in many different ways.”
  522. “What’s mine do?” asked Arsofina eagerly.
  524. “That’s a rewards card. It meant that the store would give me better deals in exchange for shopping there.”
  526. “That’s kind of lame…” said Arsofina. Her face scrunched up in a pout and her ears drooped. Cuuuttteee.
  528. “This one has a tiny you in it!” said Pyritta.
  530. “Wow, look! What a painting! The color looks a little faded but it’s a great work of art!” said Arsofina.
  532. “That’s a picture. We had machines that could capture and record the color of a single instant. They were called {photographs}, or {pictures}, and we used them to record memories, beautiful scenery, help identify people and much more.”
  534. “What’s the purpose of this voetoegrap?” asked Halitt.
  536. “That declares that I have permission to operate a motor vehicle. Basically, I was allowed to use the main form of transportation.”
  537. Anon was really hoping that this Q and A would end soon and he could get some food.
  539. “Anyways, I’m not from here. So, uhh, I have to ask… are there… monsters here?”
  541. The room went silent. All eyes were on Anon.
  543. “I mean monsters like, you know, demons. Or dragons, or perhaps some sort of supreme demonic entity bent on the conquest of all life…” Anon trailed off. “You know, hypothetically of course.”
  545. The elves looked away. Pyritta and Halitt looked at each other and back to Anon.
  547. “Yes, Anon, I’m afraid there are monster’s here. I imagine your life was very peaceful if there were none in your world, but here many humans do… succumb to monsters.” said Pyritta.
  549. “And the women that attacked the city, were they amazons?” asked Anon.
  551. “Why yes, as a matter of fact they were. How did you know?”
  553. “Lucky guess. When you say ‘succumb’ why did you hesitate like that. The men that get caught, to do they die?”
  555. “Tis a fate worse than death…” whispered Irin.
  557. The room was silent again. Halitt did his best to answer.
  559. “No, the monsters have been corrupted by the demon lord, an incredibly powerful succubus with the strength to rival gods, into a hybrid of their monstrous counterparts and succubi. Men who are caught are kidnapped to fulfil the monster’s desire for spirit energy.”
  561. Ho. Ly. Fuck. This was it. The big ticket. The thing that every poster to ever haunt a monster girl thread dreamed of.
  562. “But, unlike the threads, it does mean that I have to wade through potentially hundreds of monsters to find an ideal monster.” Thought Anon. There were no do-overs here. If a matango got a hold of him, or if a cu-sith beat him down, that would be the end of it.
  564. “Well, that certainly is something to watch out for.” Said Anon. “I’ll be sure to stick to human settlements.”
  566. “I’m glad you feel that way, because these humans are here to take you back to their village.” said Irin. “Your things are already being packed. You can leave tomorrow morning.”
  568. Anon smiled. “Thank you Lady Irin; I can never repay the hospitality that you and the city have treated me to.”
  570. Irin stiffened a bit. “It’s no trouble at all. If you truly want to repay us, you can live out your life in the human village. Forget that you ever came into contact with us.”
  572. “Why? I don’t understand.”
  574. “It was wonderful to have you as a guest, but… you are a danger to our people. Already you have brought war to our city, and if you stay, more monsters will make their way here. We cannot survive an endless onslaught of creatures. Not all of them will be as easy to repel as amazons.” said Irin.
  576. “I see.” Anon reclined against the head board. “Then I’ll leave. I swore that I would repay you when I was able too, and if that means never coming back into elven country, then I’m as good as gone.”
  578. “We’ll take good care of him! Don’t you worry. And we’ll send you all of our research on him too!” said Pyritta.
  580. “We appreciate it.” said Lythris.
  582. “Excellent! We’ll see you off in the morning.” said Irin.
  584. ~~~~~~
  586. Yes, all that stands between Anon and a loving wife is miles of terrain, a foreign culture, illiteracy, a general lack of physical fitness, poverty, bad weather, zero geographical knowledge, and thousands of rapists who could stuff him into a coffee cup if they felt so inclined.
  587. END OF ACT 1
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