I wonder if we’re going to need more players again at this rate

General:

Si Da moves through Shahira to the northern border. With all militaries tied up with all the other ongoing wars in every direction the only opponent Azazel deals with is Song Yi, who accomplished nearly nothing despite her power and wound up getting respawned after essentially falling into three traps in a row and being taken down by Van Djao. Spies report that Krovkom is likely in league with Si Da at least a little bit.

Meanwhile Shenlong’s forces, though messed up from battling Si Da, are offering to help if Con Lai gives them the door at the Imperial Throne they need to get their forces to Svarga. This does, however, include Nazarius and his crew who at the behest of Shenlong intends to prevent the temple of Brahma from getting into Si Da’s hands. Raijin and Fujin have also gone to Svarga to prepare to lend assistance. The politics of Krovkom vs Nazarius/Shenlong basically amounts to this new continent being their lawless lands and the two of them are battling for power and influence Krovkom seems willing to team up with Si Da, but Nazarious already threw his lot in with Shenlong.

Meanwhile, the dark storm over Doi Cho Len seems to be developing more strange behaviors and Baron Samedi has come back to the main continent to study it in person.

Back in the west, Naomi manages to start a whole lot of chaos anyways since no one stopped her before she went after Nergal’s new high prophet. That and it had been a month anyways and stopping her is already enough of a headache.

After engaging the paladins in another fight, Saint David, Andrew, and Rachel have sided with Naomi. It actually went a bit better then expected since all those paladins kept their powers which lent a lot of credit to their claims. Arthur stays on the side of the church, but his trusted knight Galahad feels Naomi might be right. But Orujov decided that his job is to investigate this in both directions anyways and the inquisition has utilized their ultimate power. Allowed to overrule even the king in moments of extreme necessity, Orujov has declared martial law under his now autocratic rule until his investigation goes one way or another.

However, while Arthur, Galahad, and Orujov are all for “lets see how this pans out” the angels are a bit less tentative and Uriel immediately called for Naomi to be killed before the madness spreads further through Divus thanks to her. This has made the projected civil war go somewhat all over the place, while a surprisingly large portion of the nation is at least willing to let the Inquisition reach a verdict a smaller but more aggressive portion feels the need to defend the nation from Eli’s corrupting influence and have taken immediate action in trying to hunt down and kill Naomi. So the masses are undecided, but a few minorities are taking immediate action on both sides. Naomi collapsed the entire cathedral with her initial assault on Jebediah, who managed to escape a falling building somehow.

 

Shento:

All the planning goes well except that Krovkom still seems content to watch as Lucifer engages Song Yi to the north among the wild lands, gathering data and all.

So far no one who knows the plans seems to be relaying them to anyone else.

Con Lai:

Blessings delivered.

Counterintelligence sent around, but without actually attacking any of those locations its impossible to tell if any of them counter any leaked plan as no possible targets have started doing anything abnormal that might be related to them.

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Quick update

 

Shento:

Overall the attack was a success and Svarga was retaken, though the place is even more of a wasteland then before. Kaja even managed to almost kill Krovkom with his apparent super strength driving them to retreat from the city for now. Though Elvira murdered Jericho before the retreat was sounded and a lot of vampires died as the enemy seemed conveniently well armed for dealing with them. Emilia supposes the ones who swapped sides told Krovkom’s forces the entire rundown of how to kill vampires. Anna was almost killed but managed to retreat before being burned to death.

Meanwhile CTU is getting into the thick of it back on the home front. The entire nation still proves very easy to infiltrate, while invasion is near impossible due to the wild spirits simply walking in and taking a look around is very simple. The conspiracy grows deeper as Nergal’s involvement is detected. What actually worries Emilia most isn’t that they found evidence that Nergal is messing with you guys, but that she hasn’t found any kind of evidence that Asmodaeus is involved. No one knows what Asmodaeus has been up to for the last year, and that’s terrifying.

Also despite holding Svarga, Azazel’s forces are still on approach so should probably figure out what to do about that one.

 

Con Lai:

The hunt for Nergal is on, though the slight problem is most of the snake cultists seem to have no idea of Nergal’s involvement with them at all. So even when interrogated by An Lahn they have nothing relevant to demon involvement. While progress against the cult itself isn’t going too badly, it is not directly associated with Nergal and his involvement is without their knowledge. However, some progress is made in finding out more about Nergal’s secret legion. In particular, while the actual spy hasn’t been found, certain events indicate someone in the nation definitely works for Nergal. Which we’ll cover after next paragraph.

The plan to kill and replace Moses goes well enough, Ishikama is very good at his job. The replacement was chosen by Ishikama since Naomi had no one she trusted to do the job, all was going swimmingly for the first three weeks and then the new false prophet was publicly called out on being a fraud. Actually it went exactly like Naomi’s first plan, and after some persuasive arguments said prophet was killed by the High Inquisitor in open combat. Instating a new high prophet once again and making Divus as a whole somewhat uncertain.

On the upside, all this hunting for Nergal managed to root out the truth that Nergal figured out the plan and did it faster so we do know he is behind it. On the downside, it is almost certain he found out the plan and hijacked it because of someone in Hale’a telling him what was up. Coincidentally at the same time he overtook the high prophet, Naomi came under attack by Si Da agents including Moraxus. Fortunately Moraxus was slain despite his efforts, Naomi is recovering from the fight but already on the move towards Divus.

 

ryoka Technically the niece of Ishikama, she is a member of the Hanzo clan and as such is one of those sneaky assassin types. Unlike Ishikama’s style of being ignored, she often works by exploiting her allure. She is notably well spoken and is talented at posing as a noble, though this would be hard to do in anywhere except Taiyo given her clear ethnicity.

She has actually performed relatively few missions as the Hanzo clan kept her at home most of the time unless it was absolutely necessary to utilize her since Taiyo isn’t particularly fond of sending women to murder other people. She is proficient at assassination but she is otherwise more of a house noble.

mariahOne of the former pirate raiders, she is a black mage from Thykenae with the rare destruction aspect. Her particular version of it allows her to cause existing damage to continually increase if she can touch the object or person. For example, a ship with a crack in the hull might find the crack keeps growing until the whole ship breaks apart. This makes her highly effective at property destruction and murdering people with tough regenerative powers.

She’s really only here because the paycheck was pretty neat and Rackham was dead at the time she was asked. Plus the ship and crew she was given also kept her around. In short, she’s not a particularly altruistic individual but as long as you keep her paid and supplied she’ll kill people for you.

 

Roster Update

With the Divus and Nergal issues I decided to throw in the bosses of the major branches.

king-arthur Somewhat obvious, the king of Divus. He’s a bit older now days but back in his youth he has been on many adventures, there could be many volumes published on his many tales.

In the modern day he tends to just hang out in the capital as running around and getting into wars is a bit tough on the old guy, unlike black mages he doesn’t remain in fighting shape well into his 80’s or anything. He wields Excalibur, the most powerful artifact anyone has ever heard of, so even if he’s old that shouldn’t be taken lightly.

 

galahadOne of the round table knights and the son of founding member Lancelot. Galahad was so worthy a knight that at one point he managed to ascend to heaven itself while still alive, and he received the powers and blessings attributed normally to paladins. He would go on to become the leader of the templars and now is basically in charge of the military. He is considered the greatest hero in all of Divus for his many adventures and his intense code of honor. He holds the aspect powers of phyisque and his weapon has the force aspect similar to Kaja or Velius.

 

 

orujovLeader of the inquisitors, Orujov is an intense man who has been able to reduce grown men into whimpering children with just his gaze alone. His artifact weapon has the ability to teleport him up to a range of about twenty five miles. It isn’t spectacularly impressive but it works well for his batman methodology of hunting down people and being spooky. In all he isn’t terribly scary in combat compared to some of the black mage champions despite his skill, but within Divus he is still a major figure.

 

 

jebediahNew-new leader of the Divus church. We have intel that strongly suggests this is actually an agent of Si Da and was definitely put into power by the actions of Nergal.

So far he’s a pretty nice old guy and is just settling into his position as far as anyone can tell. Figuring out the ins and outs of ruling the church with the assistance of those around him.

 

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Year of the Snake

Shentu Wo: 3429 Power, 2,716 Followers
Kikai Senso: 9,910Power, 350 Followers, Next Form Progress: 28%
Lin Sun: 1,040Power, 875 Followers
Con Lai: 2431 Power, 3, 821 Followers
Caine: 5064 Power, 1,785 Followers

The Snake cult has been heavily damaged in Akhetaten with the Vua Cai taking over operations. While Sheridan was a good information hunter it was largely because of his power as a glamor vampire. The shinobi house of Hanzo led by Jin is far more effective in this clandestine war spanning multiple nations. Several of their movements have been discovered and with the help of Emilia we figured out just how deep they have infiltrated Hale’a Jeongsin already.

Now for the bad news, its a pretty deep web and they struck once again. Adelaide ports are burning, Abel is dead, Rena is dead, Ilo Hae is dead, and there were several other prominent assassinations carried out within a single mass orchestrated day. Vris was also a target of an attack but Johnathan Zhi prevented it with his fancy perception powers. Lo’c was also a target of assassination but that one was thwarted by the fact that Lo’c apparently didn’t realize he’d been poisoned and suffered no effects. The only reason anyone even noticed was because Roku caught the assassin due to an entirely unrelated investigation. However, the Jinko want Lo’c moved to Kagayakashi and locked up tight before they go after him again. Also concerning, several Jinko project chassis’ were stolen and have not been recovered.

On an amusing note, they also tried to gain an alliance with the pirates to further their agenda of just total chaos. It seemed the perfect alliance, until they apparently forgot that unlike Rackham – Eli does not tolerate their religious beliefs and killed them. Since their plan is to release a god from its imprisonment, they’re on the Atlantean shit list now too.

The Moses project was actually pretty easy for Ishikama Hanzo. Despite this being the biggest hit on the entire list, even factoring in the snake boys, Hanzo accomplished it without any problems at all and sent Moses to meet An Lahn Tien. Who also managed to easily extract the conspiracy from Moses to confirm what Naomi believed, he can’t speak to Jehova at all. No one can. However, Jehovah can still grant blessings and Moses can control who they go to. However, there is no way to indicate who to revoke them from as the way he tells which ones should receive it is by presenting the individual before the altar and making some gestures that Jehovah seems to have figured out as “please bless this dude”. Though the level of Jehovah’s involvement is questionable, if he really comprehends why they want the blessings or what they’re used for is up for debate.

However, the spy network cannot find any further conspirators actually in on it other then two cardinals. It turns out each time a new high prophet is chosen they are let in on whats going on, if they weren’t already one of the two, and given a lot of reasons to keep it going. In fact, the illusion that Moses does speak to Jehovah has a lot of major benefits in keeping away a lot of scary things like the snake cult or more bold demonic moves as well as deeper corruption within the ruling powers and church. Reports also indicate many will join her side purely to uproot the church and shake up the established order, usually in a way that will benefit them more then staying in their current living situation. Given the close proximity of the church to the ruling powers, it is expected most higher ranked nobles will side with the church whereas lower ranked ones might go with Naomi except for those who are truly faithful to the church as Moses has portrayed it.

While we’re at it Naomi also feels it might be super important to actually tell people what Excalibur does in case that impacts people’s planning. It is, obviously, the most famous and powerful weapon in the known world but the stories of what it does changes dramatically between sightings and tales. The truth is, it learns the power of any other weapon that comes within its vicinity and permanently gains the abilities of that weapon at its own power level, since it is the most powerful artifact weapon in the world that usually means its more powerful then whatever it stole the ability from.

Meanwhile to the east, Drakon has taken over Svarga. Everyone in it has either been enslaved by Krovkom or murdered. A large part of the problem came from within, traitors sold out information on its defenses and assisted in sabotaging them as well which made it easy for the striders to completely overpower those who remained loyal. However, despite now holding the city Krovkom seems to leave the temple of Brahma alone. Innokenti passed word on from Shenlong that if anyone messed with that temple he would personally incarnate and kill them. They haven’t actually learned what the gates are according to our spies. Shenlong has been careful not to tell them about it and instead spoke more of the sacredness of Brahma.

Moraxus of Si Da managed to encounter and kill the Strider of Nazarious Galina, though for the most part Si Da has opted to leave Nazarious’ legion alone now. The Jade empire is already damaged enough and it is defensively focused as it cannot really attack the Jakaal remnant now that the Pit is destroyed. Instead, Si Da “Invaded” Shahira. Turns out Shahira doesn’t give enough of a shit though and so they’ve been allowed to just pass through along the sands to avoid the wild lands that Song Yi has turned against them. They seem to be moving around the Jade Empire and the now powerful colonies of Nazarius to try and get to Svarga. Since Nazarius does not really know or care about the importance of Svarga he isn’t really trying to stop them and instead focusing on expanding his new empire. He seems to be colonizing the Lengdon mountains specifically, someone had to pin Song Yi down to stop her from going to attack them.

Shento:

On the upside Emilia is pretty good at homeland security and already found 18 traitorous individuals within the nation. On the downside this means she found out your nation is pretty much infiltrated on every level. Vua Cai movements are sold to Atlanteans, Si Da champions live in the jungles to kill off or recruit your best up and comers, Svarga is basically just a mess all around, doomsayers report to Drakon from within the Aetas, this goes on and on. This is primarily because not necessarily all these things are actual enemy spies, just citizens who will sell information about you guys to others. Song Yi has always led her nation with an open nature, as you may recall she held government meetings in the gardens that all of Yaosai could attend. This has made it exceptionally easy for anyone else to find out whatever they wanted about you, and is a large factor in how the cult of Apophis assassinated so many people so quickly.

Speaking of which – three more high ranking vampires, including Abel, were also recently assassinated during the more fledging stages of Emilia’s agency. Kaja predicts they’re trying to piss you off enough to get a reaction that could devolve into further chaos.

We also found out the snake cult tried to contact Atlantis for assistance in spreading their anarchic dream. They apparently forgot that just because Eli spreads chaos doesn’t mean he’ll tolerate their religious beliefs. So that delegate team died.

Sheridan has largely sounded a full retreat from Akhetaten as ordered, this snake cult shit is getting out of hand and the Vua Cai seem to be taking over this show under the command of Jin Zhang with the shinobi house of Hanzo.

Unfortunately, Hayate can find no orcs with the actual talent to become blademasters. Only Kekoa has the violent nature needed to be a full blown warrior. He could train some anyways though, just no gaurantee they’ll be comparable to a paladin or vampire.

While the plan to intercept the tyrants and send them home went fairly well, they aren’t happy about it. After the night of the assassinations in which Abel died, several of them went rogue again. Many are now hunting the snakes without supervision and some even act on behalf of Atlantis now. With so many tyrant vampires leaving the  nation, the Feral Scion seems to have also disappeared. Later in the year he would reappear with an entire clan of ferals again, now flying the banner of Krovkom.

A long and lengthy network of tunnels runs under Divya with the help of Bahamut though no action is currently being taken. However, a lot of Templars are sitting around your place in Hale’a along with Akhetaten and Altepetl ready to march on Krovkom as was arranged for previously.

Alex maintains power in the vacuum Carmilla left through pure force. With the Crimson Order loyal, she was able to use them to overwhelming threaten anyone who tried to cross her. While things are still overall a  mess, she’s not doing too bad at damage control. Emilia has her under heavy guard, she is likely to be the next target of the Cult of Apophis if they don’t take you leaving Akhetaten as surrender at least.

Lin Sun:

Despite the assassination attempt Vris doesn’t seem all that phased. Even when the would-be assassin was caught just minutes before trying to kill her she didn’t look up from her project and just mumbled something about them dealing with it. So she’s handling it well.

 

Con Lai:

With Sheridan pulling out of Akhetaten, its now the Vua Cai’s show in dealing with the snake cult. Fortunately, you have a bunch of ninjas. Unfortunately, just as Shento discovered, they retaliate pretty hard. The Vua Cai in general have never really dealt with this kind of sneaky cult and one of the main ports in Adelaide was set on fire, while the perpetrators were found and killed, thus identified, it didn’t stop the damaging effects very well. While it wasn’t the whole place and only two or three ships burned, all were visiting merchants and not members of your own fleet. This has been a major blow to PR and the port’s commerce. Fortunately the monopoly on the river of dreams makes it hard for them to get too worried just yet at least. But Jin and the gang report that this is just starting. While they uprooted another cult base of operations, several members of his team were assassinated over the last few months as well. Malati was killed when she found Maliken himself, and then promptly lost that fight.

Rena was assassinated by the snake cult as well, which definitely didn’t help the PR problem of the burning ships. Jin’s Report indicates that Nergal’s apprentice Maliken was directly responsible for the entire night of murders throughout Hale’a. Though he has been unable to actually find Maliken, he also has discerned the cult of Apophis is not entirely aware he is working with them and helping them along. Granted, exposing that proves to be near impossible given the skillset of Nergal’s forces.

Submarine progress: They can make it go under water, but not come back up. Lo’c still hasn’t worked out how to do that second part, at least its easy to retrieve the prototype from the dock.

As for the drakon spying, the most notable weakness they find could be exploited is the Dragon Master’s individual greed as they try to build their wealth to gain status and power. They theorize the more reasonable masters could be negotiated with and bribed if the wealth was sufficiently appealing. They also found out that while it isn’t obvious back home to you guys, by the talks of dragons here it is clear this very weakness is being exploited by Mammon and that is how Krovkom suddenly appeared and decided to take over Svarga very specifically even if he didn’t know the wasteland of a city’s significance.

 

Kikai:

The Jinko want Lo’c kept safe at Kagayakashi. Lo’c says thats silly and doesn’t want to be locked up in a dungeon for his own security. Roku’s entire strike team is now just hovering around Lo’cs general vicinity on full paranoid guard until a more official order is handed out for dealing with the subject.

Caine:

The nation takes a major blow as Ilo Hae is somehow assassinated. As the primary PR figure, the loss was rather prominent and has sparked outrage. Without orders several of the hunters are now dispersing across the nation looking for snake cultists out of a mix of revenge and paranoia.

 

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What would Nergal do?

Stories of Lore 21

Shentu Wo: 3118 Power, 2,846 Followers
Kikai Senso: 9,665 Power, 285 Followers, Next Form Progress: 28%
Lin Sun: 835 Power, 878 Followers
Con Lai: 3987 Power, 4, 152 Followers
Caine: 4627 Power, 1,803 Followers

Naomi captured!

And then things became more complicated instantaneously. She can’t be cured because she isn’t being driven insane, she was simply given information regarding the likelihood that Moses can’t actually speak to Jehovah. Problem is that information was given to her by Eli, while several factors point to this likely being the truth Eli could have just killed either her or moses during his attack if he had felt like it. He clearly wants this fight to happen. Its also likely that the snake cult of chaos would love it too, and of course Si Da would just adore it if Naomi sent Divus into a civil war. Also if we went to war with them because of this, we probably wouldn’t get their support against the Drakon anymore until Naomi won (assuming she does win).

Such a war benefits a lot of the enemies, but would also deal terrible damage to the western alliance against the Drakon or Si Da as Divus has the largest standing army. However, Naomi brings up a solid point. If Moses is manipulating the nation for his own agenda, what agenda is it? Jehovah is the most powerful of the gods and is the sole guardian of the western gate, leaving a corrupt order in control of all that could result in some things going terribly wrong terribly fast. Her powers have not been revoked, which lends credibility to the concept that she is correct and something fishy is afoot.

To the first person who says “lets just deal with this after we deal with this other problem”. Song Yi points out there is no shortage of problems. Ignore this for convenience now and we might as well commit to it forever because there are more Drakon coming, Si Da is still alive, and she’s willing to bet her palace that the instant you solve any of those problems more problems will show up. If not just showing up anyways.

In other revelations, Ryner was not prepped for the spirits to fight Drakon. They had no idea the Drakon even existed as was revealed when Song queried them about it. They were preparing for what appears to be a Divus civil war which could be catastrophic and destabilize the entire west. However, Song has also learned which spirits prepared Ryner to be their agent of war. Hei Lang was the primary spirit that moved Lhin Thu and Ryner to prepare for something big and was definitely the one that sent Ryner to the Jakaal for his own amusement. So this just adds onto the pile of “this is definitely something all the bad guys want to happen”.

Meanwhile back at Akhetaten, the war with the snake cult continues in the shadows. Corruption in the government revealed and dealt with thanks to the work of our meddling heroes.

In their investigations they crossed paths with Nitetis, no major members died on either side of the battle and Nitetis retreated thus sacrificing the hideout the team discovered. Even when the cult set fire to it during their escape to try and erase as much evidence as possible, Jin’s elemental spirit blade sort of fixed that before it got too out of control and some objects and plans were recovered which led to further investigation.

One of the weirder discoveries is their current attempt to do everything they possibly can with Lamia to make her have children and see if they can somehow bestow her mutation onto others as they like the snake thing, and she is strong enough to fight black mages which Nitetis cannot comfortably do.

While almost all encounters are a battle of mysteries and social manipulations lately, it just keeps going deeper. The cult turns out to be almost as old as the nation itself, it has never been completely wiped out just set back in its goals and thwarted.

Then they retaliated. Carmilla was killed right in her own home. No one knows how they managed to do it but she was definitely burned to death. The spirits were able to track down the assassin, but they had already committed suicide to avoid being captured.

Given her public importance her sudden death was impossible to hide, and the vampires became pissed off. Without waiting for orders the entire Tyrant clan has suddenly left Hale’a for Akhetaten despite Sheridan’s advice about that being a bad idea. He’d much rather have Anna since they can’t poison her or anything, but she didn’t like Carmilla in the first place. More then that though, Akhetaten doesn’t want the entire tyrant clan coming over there looking for revenge on a cult who blends in with civilians, on the verge of this whole Moses vs Naomi thing this could cause the political situation to become a lot more complicated. Alexandria is a little depressed her favored mentor died and the

Shento:

Spying on the Drakon has yielded the basics of them being terrifying but also that they regularly run military drills and act highly defensively just like Nazarius does while trying to deal with the Jakaal. They are expecting the savages of the land to fight with guerilla tactics since thats pretty much all the Jakaal do. Also one spy observes the champion of Krovkom, Elvira, to be organizing a special team of striders but for one purpose he can’t discern.

The alliance call works out pretty well because Krovkom is threatening Svarga, the city with a gate. The templars and some of Akhetaten’s military agreed to come help out on this one. Though its a long trip. Altepetl agreed to go as well but they’re extremely weak lately after the Saldis conversion and their support will be minimal.

Obviously as the general section covered, Carmilla was killed by some snake cultist.

emilia-fortunatoPerhaps a more unconventional paladin, she earned the rank through capability but isn’t of the heavily armored variety. She was already a trained warrior before entering the order and is actually not associated with the original gang of knights you’ve recruited…despite also coming from Divus. Seriously what is it with you and Divus people, is it like your fetish or…?

Emilia is more of the rogue type and specializes in urban operations and improvised solutions. While Kaja and Jericho are clearly battlefield knights, Emilia is more of the type you keep with you when you don’t want to be super obvious about it. Despite that she is an adept commander as are all paladins and has her own team composed of heavy infantry, calvalry, and more “scouts” like herself. This team is not as large as the full blown armies that Kaja has, but because of its variety she is good at adapting to the needs of the objective. What she does really well is fight in conditions where a typical commander would not have enough intel to comfortably operate since she herself is capable of operating as a scout and implying information.

Her black magic aspect is the moon, which really operates very similarly to any other light aspect but just colored differently. She shoots lasers. Her upper level of destructive potential can wipe out a house, but that will effectively be all she does for that fight. She prefers smaller bursts to use as a ranged tool, hence the lack of ranged weapon on her person despite being a scout/ranger/rogue who typically tend to have a bow or crossbow (stereotypically at least).

Personality wise she’s very relaxed and somewhat arrogant in her own capability. Often taking on things that might get out of hand, while her unique talent is to properly read a situation while lacking information that can also be her downfall if she guesses a key detail wrong. She is also unnecessarily cruel at times, the combination of her arrogance and mean streak often leaves her playing with her prey like a cat just for her own entertainment. She actually was one of the people who taught Alex while Alex was with the paladins training, since her methods lend well to Alex’s powers.

Lin Sun:

Well the basic summary of Oydis is that her bow is death aspected and she’s somewhat of a viking hunter. She’s super nice about the game of telephone in attempt to talk to her though. She’s actually a commander more so then a combatant though.

Ranks and artifacts are awkwardly shuffled around for maximum efficiency, though it is awkward to demote and strip someone of an artifact just because a new person showed up at the academy.

Kaisa is super powerful ice mage again with the blessing and coat.

The university mostly focuses on general education with a few specialist classes. As most people in the world are not multi-lingual and a lot of them are outright illiterate basic education is a major function and draw of the place. Higher education with the specialists currently is based on history, a few explore the concepts of magic and aspects in a basic course but those seeking to really delve into those must travel to learn from the cults of Shento or Isis.

You go for a walk around Hale’a. All is going fine until one day you wake up with a massive hangover in some golden palace. You can’t remember anything that happened the day before and you are forced to join Zaeed in a series of wild shenanigans to uncover the mystery of your night out.

Con Lai:

All that Naomi stuff from the general section.

Meanwhile your clever spies in Drakon continue to nap for intel delivery. The latest they have discovered about Drakon is that the nation isn’t actually united in its attempt to colonize the newly discovered land to the west. Each master is acting of its own accord in a bid for power, the lords typically don’t see a need to go as they already have power. While the nation is technically one united empire, colonization are currently private investments and ventures. Which is why the dragon masters back home aren’t exactly working in sync with each other. However, Vechnost is sending a team of “ambassadors” to meet Shenlong, its all the talk of the town as they try to learn more about the mysterious storm dragon of the new land.

River of dreams

Rena is a pretty popular governor. Even though people are sometimes iffy on the woman leadership thing in this world (since you and Song are gods it is still a bit abnormal) Rena is like, super awesome. And cheats given what her ability is.

Hanzo suggests that his particular house of Shinobi may be beset off dealing with the snake cult in Akhetaten, that would fall into their specialty after all. Though, with the current political situation looking risky, depends what future plans are. Though he will easily accept a blessing, one more tool in his arsenal after all.

Caine:

Well with some good timing on Nila’s part the hunting team did manage to take down Naomi, who didn’t seem to realize the bullets had sleep poison since she clearly intended to just tank it. Milenkosi performed the old snatch and grab to take her to the dream prison before anything else could go wrong. But that left your team to contend with a mysterious ally of hers. After half the environment was destroyed, Milenkosi came back to calm Ryner down before he ended up murdering some of the hunters.  An issue which came up since none of your followers had ever seen him before today.

Meanwhile the continuous adventures of Ilo Hae prove to be going alright, though she points out as a nation there is a lack of direction. While they do okay on their own hunting, staying alive, or just joining other teams in targeting various assets, some people are feeling a little out of place when in war time they have no passionate target to hunt. She advises beginning the hunt for the Kraken soon, or dragons, something to give them a sense of vigor. Even if doing so means probably a lot of them will die though.

Kikai Senso:

The robots almost left without everyone else to go fight dragons but eventually were stopped. They’re always eager for more death and war. So while waiting, all hail the spiky tree.

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Roster Update

serbes Revealed to be the high prophet of Apophis among the snake cult people. Serbes is exceptionally intelligent and could rival Nergal’s demons in their craft. He is incredibly elusive despite making grand appearances for his cult at secretive meetings and is now known to be the orchestrator behind dozens of diabolical plots.

With his powers as a high prophet he can cause chaotic and random effects that sometimes make no sense at all. What makes it particularly dangerous is that he seems to know what his power just did while everyone else is still trying to figure it out, giving him a tactical advantage.

 

NitetisA champion of Apophis, also a mystic. With the powers of a champion blessing she can materialize spirits like Sarnai, Locust, and Makaio could. The kicker is that all her spirits are venomous ethereal snakes reminiscent of the way Locust wielded his spirit swarm.

She is typically one of the major figurehead warriors and rarely appears as her particular job is more overt then the operations of the cult. However, if backed into a corner the cult will rely on her more dramatic abilities to protect them.

 

KateschTechnically his profession is assassin. Kaesch is capable of creating snakes and then commanding them. A feature he uses to kill people in the night since most homes are not snake proof when the snake is genuinely attempting to get in. In direct combat he can just throw snakes at people, not too scary compared to black mages but still fairly dangerous as one bite can be fatal.

 

 

 

A major figurehead for the cult, Lamia is originally a Thykenian that was brought into it after the takeover. Her lower body is that of a snake’s, and they found her like this before she was even a member of the cult. Turns out Thykenae already has some snakey people with Medusa and Lamia.

She was one of the many mistress’ of Zeus and when Hera took revenge by taking all her children away Lamia went mad with grief and started to eat the children of others. Eventually this unlocked her black mage aspect and she became all snakey. As with all morphed aspects, her physical strength and abilities are very high. Now blessed by Apophis her morphed physique is even stronger. She is also an oracle though doesn’t have overt uses for that like Nitetis does.

SamyazaWith Saldis’ recent return to Si Da after so long, the demon Samyaza has entered into her service and become her champion. As a demonic deathspeaker she has a pet undead dragon from that earlier attempt to attack Sthan Thi directly and wields ethereal death magic along her new bone army. As a major demon she has superior strength and physical capabilities as well.

 

 

 

Chin HuiAnother hidden strider within the Jade Empire that Innokenti found. His weapon is blessed by Shenlong and is deceptive. It looks like a decorated log, its actually a giant cannon. Similar to the hellfire cannon’s on the Heretic, it fires magic not projectiles so there is no traditional barrel or anything. It happens to feature mostly electrical influences, such is the element of Shenlong.

Chin Hui is actually a really great guy though, he is more concerned with protecting his home then fighting on the offense. He is described as “jolly” by most.

 

ElviraOne of the striders from the blood dragon’s domain. Elvira is wickedly powerful and holds rank similar to that of Dmitry, she’s the chosen personal champion of Krovkom. Along with the strider physique, she notably possesses the powers of hemomancy and is as refined in the art as Dracula was. No one other then Shento himself is going to match her skill or raw power in the art as it currently stands.

Her personality can be summed up as “evil bitch” and she loyally serves Krovkom. Judging by the fact he likes her, it can be assumed he will also be just as aggressive and cruel as her once he decides it is time to act.

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Updaaaates

Shentu Wo: 3064 Power, 3,136 Followers
Kikai Senso: 9,468 Power, 235 Followers, Next Form Progress: 28%
Lin Sun: 780 Power, 750 Followers
Con Lai: 5477 Power, 3, 858 Followers
Caine: 4307 Power, 1,761 Followers

General:

Eli attacked Solium (the Divus Capital) in the middle of the day. After his visit Naomi went insane and tried to kill Moses. She collapsed the entire grand cathedral and her fight with the other paladins wrecked a city block, but she was stopped by the other paladins though managed to get away. Eli’s appearance was surprisingly brief but the city has fallen into chaos as a result. Moses issued a statement that Eli is to be blamed for this, and Naomi will be remembered for what she did when she was truly herself. That being said, if Eli somehow controls her in a way that he cannot heal (as he already tried) then she has to be killed. She is one of the most dangerous people in Divus and now she’s serving Atlantis as far as they can tell.

Meanwhile back in Akhetaten’s expanded territory, the rebellious acts of terrorism continue. However, Akhetaten have engaged them in a dangerous game of espionage and uncovered Maliken’s influence. However, that didn’t mean much as knowing he’s here has only made the situation escalate in paranoia. No one knows what his power actually is yet, but being the chosen heir of Nergal can’t mean anything good.

The new dragon cult of Drakon that follows Shenlong have established a new high prophet of Shenlong since his own died when the Jakaal razed the Imperial Throne. That’ll be in the roster update, but taking on a strider high prophet has strengthened his ties to the Imperiya even if still unofficial since he hasn’t sworn loyalty to Vechnost yet, and the strider was found in his own country by Innokenti for him.

Si Da and the Drakon continue to clash, Drakon easily pushes the demon armies back but have regular losses against the heroes of Si Da. Van Djao outright snapped a dragon’s neck with his bare hands and has left some gruesome stories behind that make Drakon a little wary of just charging into Si Da’s home territory. Though for the most part, Si Da is back in its own borders.

The conflict turned out to be a valuable source of information about Van Djao though, people with high regeneration seem to survive his gaze. Dmitry was able to fully withstand it and keep fighting but was overpowered by Van Djao’s raw strength and combat skill. Due to how long Dmitry stood up to Van Djao it sparked interest and the Jade Empire started asking questions that agents of Carmilla and Con Lai’s realm managed to deduce information on. Spies report that Dmitry is actually not very high on the totem pole of striders as he merely works as a replaceable champion for Nazarius. The ones that work directly for lords like Innokenti are reportedly vastly more powerful then Dmitry.

Fortunately all that Drakon stuff is mostly focused on Si Da, but with Si Da retreating into its own land Drakon has acquire time to regroup and strategize further colonization efforts.

Meanwhile, across the wasteland of Taiyo and Divya, other Dragon Masters seem to be setting up their own little colony outposts that are unassociated with Nazarius. Since Taiyo was evacuating and Divya was destroyed there isn’t that much resistance but Svarga is currently under threat by Krovkom who demands submission to him. A small group of vampires seemed Krovkomto have joined him although they were rogue already so its not a significant loss.

The spy network reports that Krovkom, like Nazarius, serves a dragon lord of similar aspect. These dragon lords are still back at the Drakon mainland watching over their own respective kingdoms while the young masters travel to the new world in search of their own fortunes. Though Krovkom has definitely come to see about this whole beacon thing the blood aspects can all sense.

 

Meanwhile Altepetl has become just a little more integrated into Hale’a and vice versa. Though under Song Yi’s “don’t you dare” gaze they put down the dark magic they’ve been exploring since not only did Saldis leave but it just keeps making all kinds of other problems. Isis’ explains her phase in exploring it didn’t go well and that they should probably stop before they get too deep like she did and unlike her, a god of magic, its likely they wouldn’t be able to escape once the powers behind it started getting greedy.

In all things are actually going pretty well for you guys with consideration to the last few clusterfucks you got into. I mean sure shit is happening all over the world but locally things are pretty sweet right now.

Also roster updates!

saint joanReplacing Naomi, Saint Joan immediately became Paladin #1. She was originally a member of the templars as one of the high commanders but with the sudden emergency to replace Naomi she was given the blessings of a paladin and relieved of her command in the templars. Her weapon blessing lets her bring the wrath of heaven to wherever she wants. She can summon angels anywhere at any time. Though it specifically has to be angels, other paladins and templars don’t appear to work and she doesn’t seem to be able to send them back home quickly. Though they are authentic, she can summon Anahita or Uriel for example.

Her aspect blessing lets her act in similar fashion to a war flag’s banner. But the power of it is determined by the number of people present not her own abilities. Convenient that she can summon people.

Tena XueqinI suspect no one remembers her story from Doi Cho Len so here we go. Her grandfather was a Lengdonian who did not complete the traditional rite of climbing the mountain alone and instead emigrated far to the west in shame and settled down in Akhetaten. His son would later go on to the west and settle down in Divus where he met Tena’s mother.

Tena herself wasn’t of noble enough birth to get much attention in Divus and chose to travel back east to Doi Cho Len when the revelations of the black pantheon happened. She has the genetics of  Lengdonian though her family is two generations removed from the culture. However, at the age of thirty two she made it to the top of Yaosai by herself just to claim that she passed the ancient Lengdonian ritual. Sure Lengdon was already dead at this point, but she did it because she could. Later she’d go hang out with Lin Sun. She’s one of those who are greatly inspired by Song Yi but she liked the whole Aetas preservation creed thing and Song Yi is kind of inaccessible now days. So she’s Aetas now.

Her black magic aspect is war and she has the power to become part of the field of battle. Because of this she can not only perceive anything anyone under her command can, but she can give people the will to act how she wants them to without having to even talk to them. She is a dangerous commander with this power of mass perception and command during battle and as the former Vithanyalai professor of war she knows how to exploit this to its fullest. However, she is generally an educator and hasn’t been sent to actual war in a very long time. She is the sole survivor of Doi Cho Len’s destruction because her ability let her see it happening and avoid the things that killed everyone else around her.

Yeah her entry is long as she’s one of the first characters and has a full page in the pdf about her.

joseph sheridanI suppose we might as well actually acknowledge him now then. Sheridan is one of Carmilla’s spies and travels the world extracting information and seducing everything in his path on accident. The Glamor vampires are almost all made by Carmilla and she tends to pick the good looking sort to get close to, Sheridan was a pretty obvious choice for her.

Like all glamor vampires he can hypnotically control people who look directly into his eyes if he can hold their focus. He isn’t as powerful as Carmilla who can control everyone around her, but its effective for intel gathering. He also has the strength, regeneration, and speed you would expect of a vampire even of the glamor line.

ishimotoHe’s back, with Raijin’s cult in a mess thanks to his time away and Ryujin dead Ishimoto was adopted by Raijin to be the new high prophet. With the sword of Hayashi that the Aetas returned, Ishimoto now has the exact same powers that Hayashi did, even if he isn’t as good at performing the trick yet or exploiting the electrical powers to its fullest yet.

 

 

 

galilaNew high prophet for Zaeed. We all know how he picked her and why he picked her and what her abilities are now. Moving right along.

 

 

 

 

 

oydisFreyja found a new friend. She’s a viking type obviously, and she has the power of a death aspect bow. Unlike Astrid, Oydis is not a black mage and only has the aspect abilities from Freyja’s blessing. So she’s a bit weak in comparison to others. She’s super friendly though.

 

 

 

 

lu taoHis great great grandpa was a famous warrior and ever since then everyone in the family line has been exceptional in the field of battle. Innokenti’s discovery that they have a dragon aspect family line explains that.

Anyone who recognizes his family name trembles in fear at the mere mention of him, and though he is a young warrior who simply travels the land, his skills exceed hardened veterans. With the help of Krovkom, Lu’s full potential was realized. Blessed by Shenlong, Lu Tao is a strider of the storm. He can control lightning, wind, and rain in equal measure. While not as powerful as Fujin or Raijin in their specific areas, Lu Tao has never needed super powers to destroy his enemies before. So now its just a bonus at this point.

umetsuSomeone left Kikai, Lo’c, and Isis alone for too long and mad science occurred at the whim of Kikai’s latest desires. Umetsu is the only jinko of its kind and its chassis cannot be replicated, but its metal body is self repairing as if it were flesh. Granted it takes awhile sometimes, also its core is only a vessel unlike the typical Jinko.

This may have been too successful, no one’s entirely sure if it can be killed. However, it is a little sluggish and the wielder of this power seems a bit iffy sometimes but hey, science bitches.

 

Likely more to come later on, still working out some more for various groups. Hopefully I finish the stories of lore for next update too.

 

Shento:

Snake cult tabs: Joseph Sheridan has gotten in so deep he’s found influences by Asmodaeus and Nergal at play. This revelation has been more of a hindrance then anything else, because now Joseph is engaged in a murderous game of espionage with the demons. THE GAME IS AFOOT!

Anna’s attempts to harass the Drakon don’t go well. Mostly because no one else competent enough is with her. The other Goethe’s aren’t as strong as her and the striders number in the hundreds. With their recent defensive position setting in after encountering both the Jakaal and Atlanteans there aren’t very many opportunities to pick off stragglers. Mostly because the types who straggle already met the Jakaal and gave Vo Kim his reputation. Ever since then they’ve been in much tighter formation around their outposts and move in larger numbers, as well as on dragons.

The anti dragon volley ballista design is easy enough to come up with just by handing it off to the RFC department. The problem comes in production. With Con Lai’s submarine project, the Jinko production, the building of Kagayakashi, and Isis’ mad science with electricity the city of Lo’c is already overworked. Making huge amounts of these anti dragon weapons would take a massive amount of manpower and material that just isn’t available beyond the prototype that was made unless other projects are canceled (as they’re already all slowing each other down).

The investigative team ends up enlisting the help of Baron Samedi from El Dorado to come and see about this dark storm over Doi Cho Len. This team didn’t take long to immediately find bad news. The storm and rains are concealing more Drakon forces and an outpost, they don’t seem to mind the storm at all and if anything are studying it themselves. There is a port on the eastern side that was invisible due to the storm until a closer look was taken, but this is the actual primary landing point of the Drakon. The Jade colony is simply for those who are interested in Shenlong as a new master and Nazarius’ forces. Samedi’s investigation of the storm itself proves it to be what you would expect, some bad juju. Its dark magic and even Fujin can’t affect it, the storm just won’t go away and he’s not sure if its a dragon or something else, but there’s something in there that no one on the scout team is willing to look deeper into. Samedi says Eli might not be the only thing that came with Lin Sun.

The inquisitors aren’t doing well, sometimes they settle things well enough but two of their teams have been eaten by the jungle’s residents after being called to solve some problem that apparently the people resolved on their own. And the winners of that resolution ate the inquisitors too.

 

Lin Sun:

The hunt for a knowledge aspect is taking longer then expected, the aspect is a little rare as most people who have it just get eaten by people with more combat Savvy ones. Results pending next week’s update roll.

It turns out with your power set you can actually learn interesting things from Raijin because his style exploits that he’s lightning fast. You have ways to apply such techniques yourself.

Kaisa’s vacation is actually spent in Shahira instead of the blood jungles. With the ability to summon ice in the desert, she’s very popular there and seems to take amusement in that.

The Thyme Flamer flame is under construction as demanded. It actually is taking longer then expected because your underground city is suspended from the ceiling and Song Yi is off doing something else not terraforming so a bunch of guys with chisels have to spend some time on this one.

Con Lai:

Spy Report: Problem with building the door is the slaves aren’t really trusted with construction stuff, mostly because they’re weak and flimsy compared to striders and take forever to build anything, but because dream doors have to be rather sturdy its hard to get the stuff together for this without arousing suspicion. Work in progress is also finding a location for it.

After some inquisitive questions they’ve determined that Drakon are pretty familiar with spirits, Dragon Shaman’s went to the Jade Empire to confirm the existence of Shenlong who in their nation has become known as the spirit dragon and sparked a revolution of mysticism within their culture as more go to see the invisible dragon in the sky. They are not particularly used to acknowledging smaller spirits though, the ones in trees, bugs, and rocks for example. While they can work with larger more powerful ones, they lack Halea’s mystical ability in mass acknowledgement of smaller spirits. That kind of intricate mysticism often requires a lifetime of dedication since communication with non-verbal spirits is difficult and mostly based around empathy on both sides.

As for how striders recognize each other, they seem to all innately just be able to tell. Dragons can sense other dragons it appears. This is why even colossal dragon lords can tell a strider from a regular human even though they’re the size of ants to him. Similar to how Tyrant Vampires can detect and find any other vampire bloodline.

The submarines have been under constant development, and with the last mad science breakthrough of Isis progress is going along. However, the process is still slow given the sheer volume of tech work people want from Lo’c all the time.

Jin and Malati’s journey to Akhetaten to team up with Sheridan has gotten him involved in a very peculiar sort of adventure. While its out of the normal gimmick for the naval experts, Malati’s power is useful in this regard and Jin himself is of course a master spy.

Rena reports a noticeable increase in powerbase and followers after all this dragon crap happened. The dream PR campaign hits pretty hard when a pilgrimage via boat leads to a dream realm where you don’t get eaten by dragons.

 

Caine:

Yes you can make a shield on your arm, but its not terribly effective as its still your arm. So it kind of hurts still.

In regards to Otoroshi’s remain, Divus offers to let you have it if you bring them Naomi. At this point they’ll accept alive or dead, whatever happened to her she is a phenomenal danger to just about everyone if she becomes another of Eli’s prophets.

The adventures of the Snake Cult hunters isn’t terribly great for trophy gathering. At least not yet. However, Nila seems to excel at this kind of work in particular. Being a bounty hunter from Svarga, she’s quite effective at hunting down people and ultimately eliminating them. She has the sanctions from Akhetaten to do so as well given that the snake cult is kind of a problem.

The issue with the Artemis elite recruitment program thus far is there aren’t many naval people in the hunting nation. There are some notable sea monster hunters but they don’t quite number enough to crew a ship this large or the supporting fleet you have planned since Con Lai has absorbed a huge amount of the naval interests in the nation. Its functional enough to sail but not fully staffed quite yet nor is the crew fully trained.

 

 

 

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Lets do the Timewarp Agaaain (8 months later)

General:

Si Da and Nazarius are still at odds but for now Nazarius is able to defend the Jade Empire fairly well. Over 8 months more ships eventually came, they didn’t really bring anyone too scary though. Mostly striders to reinforce Nazarius and a good host of some who were interested in this Shenlong business. Several dragon whelps but only three more dragon masters one of which who is dead already (see 3 paragraphs down). Though despite how promising a new master Shenlong makes, not too many people are keen on the whole ‘non physical’ thing and many are here just to see if Innokenti is messing with them.

In other interesting encounters, Nazarius and team met Eli and team. Mostly because the pirates were hijacking some of the new ships coming to visit this strange new land. Since Drakon ships are very shiny and covered in gold quite often, it attracted pirates pretty quickly. They were quite offended once they discovered Eli was the master of Vassago and not the other way around, even questioning what he must have done to the poor dragon to turn it into something resembling a beast rather then an intelligent creature. Which was a fine moral high ground and all except for the immediate problem that Vassago is much larger then Nazarius and the whelps that were coming to visit from Drakon’s homeland.

While the combined efforts of the dozens of dragons that came from Drakon this time managed to force Vassago to retreat and lick its wounds, and the pirates didn’t quite succeed in taking ships from striders, it has set a weird atmosphere among the Drakon. As they just met someone who controls a dragon large enough to fight several of their own. In their circle Eli is the first man in the new world to earn the feared title of Dragon Slayer which apparently in their culture is a way to indicate humans dangerous enough to kill dragons. After Vassago ate three of the whelps, they decided to acknowledge Eli as being “pretty dangerous” hence the title. While the pirate raid wasn’t terribly successful as they underestimated how strong the striders on the ships were, the Drakon are now a bit worried about the Atlanteans and they already fear the Jakaal. The new world seems a bit scary and even though this second wave includes more soldiers the situation has definitely changed since they were first sent out as during their voyage Nazarius truly came to understand the threat the Jakaal in particular posed to them. As a result, they’re bunkering down in the Lengdon mountain range along the coast of the Jade Empire to prepare defenses and to create a landing point for future Drakon reinforcements. Shenlong seems to have conveniently not mentioned who actually controls those mountains, just in case he decides he doesn’t want them around anymore.

With the arrival of the Drakon forces, more dragon masters and their striders have appeared to stake claims in the new world and they’ve begun to explore the landmass even further since Nazarius has been primarily focused with surviving Si Da. A particular dragon master didn’t believe him when he warned about Si Da and why he is trying to keep things under control within the territory of Jade Empire. Said cocky master was convinced his striders were far better then those of Nazarius and flew straight to Sthan Thi to “get rid of the hive for you” in a typically annoying manner. This was a fairly significant battle as several dragons were involved and tried to burn Sthan Thi to the ground immediately, their striders also coming along to massacre and enslave the populace. However, in the end their assault was defeated. Shen Rai’s capabilities caught them offguard and Saldis kept reanimating dragon corpses as they fell. So Si Da now has undead dragon pets, and Drakon calls “the teleporting scythe guy” a dragon slayer as well.

It isn’t all doom and gloom for the forces of Drakon though, the Jakaal have been set back heavily in the Jade Empire and pushed back to the wild lands where the cover of the forests offer them protection from the flying dragons. Nazarius has been quite successful at adapting his tactics to recognizing the abilities of his enemies and even managed to attack and destroy “The Pit” with the reinforcements he was brought from his homeland and force the Jakaal to become nomadic.

Now they are trapped by enemies on both sides as Shahira is basically a home of dragons right now, the wide open desert provides no protection against them and the only reason Akhetaten still stands is the united nation was able to rally enough champions to produce a show of force. On the advice of Nazarius, the Drakon decide to deal with just one problem at a time for now until more of their forces arrive, and perhaps one of the dragon lords.

This has had the slight effect of uniting the western nations, including Hale’a, deeper into their joint alliance as its quite clear the dragons are the “take over the world” type of empire. So far Innokenti has not traveled far enough west to discover Bahamut though.

However, due to the curiosity of the blood strider they found Hale’a Jeongsin and have definitely taken note. Despite attempts at diplomacy it didn’t really take long for this to devolve into a fight and figuring Hale’a to be one of the pagan tribes they’d already killed a few of so easily they just sent a couple dragons and striders to investigate. They might have actually reached the blood jungle if they hadn’t pissed off Song Yi, not that doing so is particularly hard. In the end Fujin interrupted their ability to fly and grounded them into the forests where Song’s abilities turned the situation around pretty quickly. Sange also proved problematic for the striders as they had no idea what to do against that thing, defending his territory quite well and replicating himself with the remnants of their weapons and armor. Hale’a has also gotten on the ‘we’ll deal with it later’ list as they’re still preoccupied dealing with Si Da.

In the meantime, Fujin has found a home in the caverns under Hale’a with some help from Song Yi to make him his own section to house his people in. While most of the nation has defaulted to hanging out with Raijin as the main figurehead of Taiyo, some of the more mystically inclined have realized the role Fujin played in keeping the nation alive for the last few years and his city prospers well with the assistance of the Aetas cake shrooms. Fujin has given the underworld a very unique effect, wind and thus technically ventilation. This has had the major effect of making underground living more comfortable for everyone as its less…cave like. But it also turns out to make cake shrooms grow freakishly quickly, and the silk spiders are growing larger then normal as well. In all, his contribution to the underworld has made it actually a pretty nice place to live as long as you don’t miss the sun too much.

Raijin on the other hand houses the shogunate within his new territory Song gave him, insuring their way lives on. So hey, samurai army, cool. More importantly though, Isis goes mad scientist on him and along with Lo’c furthers the power of electrical invention. These projects are still a work in progress but progress has been made and now Kagayakashi has fancier lighting then everyone else along with some peculiar machines.

Isis’ latest project has yielded some result in making hovering rocks that don’t require constant power to work. They don’t do much else really, and can’t support any weight. But Zaeed created basically an air hockey table with them.

 

 

Shento:

 

The situation with the renegade vampires turns out to be fairly mundane, it is actually just a renegade vampire collection who became irate with the constant attempts to send them out of the way. The problem with them being out of the way is that their food supply also becomes rarer the further into the middle of nowhere you send them. While the plan was to leave them spread out to make their attacks less potent, the tyrant clan in particular is very social with other vampires. By the nature of attempts to spread them over the east you broke apart their little family and they wanted to stay together, the problem was if they kept together they caused the original problem.

The few that could be captured helped to reveal the previous information, but many fought viciously. The paladin and knights were almost overwhelmed but Anna took over and just massacred the rogue vampires. Killing probably a quarter of them personally, the city is just a field of gore and you have few captives to show for it. Notably every one of them were captured by the knights, no one survived Anna’s brutality. Sure she could have captured them to let them suffer as livestock for the rest of the vampires, but she isn’t interested in how much others suffer. Just that thrill she gets when she does it herself.

The cult in the territory formerly known as Thykenae is apparently a series of hijacked movements.  First there was a group of angry citizens about being annexed and all their gods being demolished, then someone sort of rallied that particular cause into a rebellion movement much like the Svarga situation. Then that got hijacked by a much more dangerous cult that actually originated from Akhetaten based around Apophis promising some assistance and power to fight back properly and without having to turn to dark or black magic. So even if the cult is full of weird ass snake people worshipping a chaos god, it still seemed on the alright side of things to most people who are more wary of all the magics named by goth kids.

The primary Agent (Joseph Sheridan) journeyed north to Akhetaten looking for more clues about the cult of Apophis and its weird snake people. Discovering the snake god to be imprisoned by the pantheon for being…well a big ball of chaos. Basically the Otoroshi situation all over again. The cult is always looking for ways to release it and have hijacked the Thykenian movement to attract more to its cause. Akhetaten isn’t incompetent though, and knows what is happening. Most of Sheridan’s info came from some of the members of the Horus cult. The issue is, even if they do know its happening its pretty goddamned hard to deal with these guys.

Sheridan suspects the involvement of the demons but at this point we just suspect everything wrong with the world somehow involves them.

Ailani ditches mysticism lessons several times and shows zero interest in it. Kekoa also has no interest in it and doesn’t even try to keep her in line. Despite Akamu’s best attempts, she just keeps doing whatever she wants and recruiting her younger siblings into her own mischief. He warns Su that Ailani exhibited some dangerous “traits” for a ten year old. Mostly in that she was aware that she had way too much power in any given interaction they were having. For example, she’s the daughter of their creator, and even if that position wasn’t acknowledged her bodyguards can kill Akamu’s whole tribe single handedly. While she didn’t do anything overtly crazy to throw her position against Akamu, as a mystic he got the impression that she was very aware that if she wanted to be, she was in control.

Which brings into note her new childhood friend, the one that makes Akamu’s whole tribe shrink when the two young girls come around together. She has met and befriended Hei Song. While Hei hasn’t done anything evil, every mystic in the land is terrified of the girl. Someone so dark and frightening to anyone remotely spiritually attuned turns out to be rather lonely and since Ailani is kind of used to being surrounded by cannibals and other such scary individuals she turned out to get along fine with the creepy goth child of Song Yi. Su is concerned Hei Song is a bad influence, an idea perhaps put forth by Akamu who is mystically inclined.

Lin Sun:

Thykenians turn out to be good educators and take well to the university. The university itself also winds up adopting Tena Xequin, the only survivor from Vithanyalai. (I bet all of you totally forgot I named her as the sole survivor of Fluffy’s cult). Experiments in having Lavet teach go poorly, and she’s back at work in the library. It turns out that even though she can quiet down a noisy class room, the absolute silence she creates actually causes mild panic and she was deemed “too scary” to be an educator. She is head librarian though.

One of the more interesting developments is the arrival of an ambassador from Akhetaten. After staying for awhile, usually talking with Vris, they wind up taking Vris with them back to Akhetaten where she visits the archives of the old empire. This ends up keeping her away for a little while but she memorizes an old nations whole library while away so that’s pretty useful. While there she ends up meeting with agent Sheridan and gets involved in the study of the Apophis cult he discovered.

After piecing together a large portion of Akhetaten’s history she determines the cult to be a serious threat but then again Akhetaten is already on top of that one and Hale’a has its own problems especially with the incoming Drakon Imperiya. Though for the most part that problem is just solving other problems as they’re still primarily fighting with Si Da.

Freyja declines the offer for help with finding a high prophet, she can find one if she wants but just hasn’t found anyone interesting enough. She has normal prophets in the meantime.

Also Vris informs you that she is just equipping her kids with the education needed to pursue whatever they want in the future. You know she’s being nice and could snark you to death using Eret as an example though, at least she’s not as vicious towards you as your last high prophet could be. Also their dad is the fun one, her job is to be the strict one that keeps the family somewhat orientated. She hasn’t stopped one of her kids from training with the Aetas after all, though that kid’s unhealthy idolization of Song Yi is concerning given how Song Yi rose to power.

 

Con Lai:

The scout ship found this mysterious continent! Success. The problem is that dragons can fly and spotted the ship coming from very far away. Unbeknownst to Drakon though, the Vua Cai communicate in their sleep and are able to send valuable information back to you even if they are currently enslaved. The report goes that well before they actually saw land they saw the towers of a coastal city and whatever lived there also saw them. Resistance was a bit futile given the fact that the dragon that came to take a look could have crushed the boat just by landing on the deck.

As it turns out, the Drakon idea of “slavery” isn’t all that unappealing to the average person. It is part of Drakon culture to be a ridiculous showoff, and as a result the slaves are not quite worked to death at the end of a whip. Your own people, that were cooperative, are currently adorned with gold and jewelry and personal projects of some of the dragon masters. As foreign slaves are apparently rare and all the rage right now, and your scout force reached them before Nazarius even sent any back since they set sail so quickly on such a speedy ship.

Abusing the power of the dream realm they managed to get into contact with the Aetas and have been spent quite a lot of time breaking down the Drakon language as they’ve observed it while awake. The ability to (apparently) learn the language on their own has only elevated their status as prize pets to the Drakon and made their whole spying job even easier as no one has the faintest idea there what the Vua Cai are good at doing.

Unfortunately, after the initial interesting fact that they are standing next to dragons wears off, there isn’t much to spy on. They can confirm the dragons are all very intelligent and rule over the society, the city they’re in is massive and beautiful, all the slaves are super well dressed and are forcefully educated from a young age as smarter slaves are worth more. Its actually not that bad a life, you just have to shut up and move out of the way of striders. Districts of the city are more akin to personal ant colonies, slaves can move freely throughout however much space is ruled over by their specific master. In the case of our Vua Cai spies, they have free reign over a dozen square miles or so as they are exotics and thus possessed by one of the more powerful masters.

On the downside, they lost the boat and their door building materials. They also aren’t labor slaves, actually that turns out to not be a thing in Drakon. Humans are physically very weak compared to striders and it would take a dozen to do the work of a single strider. The Drakon seemed to have decided that it takes too long and takes too much organization to make slaves do construction given that these structures are massive and often made with accommodating full grown dragons in mind. That does bring to mind the Vua Cai noticed the dragons are not the size of Shenlong or Bahamut, at least not the masters. Some get fairly large but Vassago (Eli’s dragon) is also bigger then anything but the city’s dragon lord. The lord is huge though and the difference between the masters and the lords appear to include a very sudden gap that they have yet to discover the reasons for.

So basically your spies live a life so luxurious the royals of Shahira (the Bakkali family) would be jealous. They’re okay with this assignment and will send back more information as they go along. While they weren’t able to construct the door, they do know where in the world this place is now and Milenkosi might be able to land there.

Caine:

The order of demon hunters progresses, while its only been half a year its definitely making headway. With its own facility and research department alongside standard training. However, Fuma has yet to take them north to make direct contact with the demon legions as they aren’t quite ready for something like that. Lo’c has developed a small variety of ammunition for Nila’s guns increasing her adaptability in the field to deal with the supernaturally empowered demons and black mages who are typically very sturdy against firearms.

On the other hand, the dragon hunters are having a rougher time. There are only two dragons really available for study, Nazarius and Vassago. Both of which are not appealing prospects to get close to. Maona works to theorize many tactics but Nazarius being a skeletal dragon definitely makes planning somewhat tricky, the best they’ve managed for practice is working with one of the spirit monsters of the forest who is particularly large and kind of the right shape.

Logan and Gaetan’s team winds up on a particularly long adventure. Tracking down the remnants of Otoroshi led them to Shahira but no merchant there was willing to hold onto such remnants for too long, they say they get bad vibes from any pieces of the akuma and they offloaded them as quickly as they could. So who would want to buy such things? Shady people in hoods of course, which meant they didn’t have much information to give. Logan managed to acquire an object one such figure traded and tracked them all the way to Divus.

While there they encountered a series of cultist who worship the demons, and by extent the Akuma are included in that. The fragment of Otoroshi was in the possession of a nobleman who collected the object along with several other demonic relics and was one of the agents of Mammon. Their first encounter didn’t go well, with both Gaetan and Logan being forced to retreat from a conflict.

This conflict in the middle of a city with a demon cult attracted the attention of the templars and their knights prompting them to get involved. The nobleman went into hiding soon after and most of his collection disappeared with him. This brought up a whole other problem, Logan and Gaetan aren’t supposed to be in Divus as they are both black mages and now the templars were onto them.

Going on the run they managed to escape the city and eventually the nations’ borders before having their identities discovered. Through a series of careful information trading they managed to deduce the aftermath of the event resulted in a scandal being uncovered, a noble house being denounced, several demon cultists being discovered, and also several black market connections being shut down by the templars. Finally though, the fragment of Otoroshi was confiscated along with the rest of the demonic collection and the nobleman’s head. Many objects disappeared into the black market but several, including the fragment, are now in the hands of the templars. Logan awaits further instruction as this makes the situation a bit dicey.

The artemis has finished its construction and is significantly larger then even the Sanyang, Jin Zhang’s flagship. However, it is not even half as wieldy and it doesn’t have the same cannons, its made to hunt the kraken and with that comes sheer mass so it can’t be taken out with a quick chomp and firing anti air weapons at dragons presumably but that takes up all its armament allotment. Fortunately its size is also part of its advantage against the dragons given that they can’t just sink it by landing on it, it acts more like a carrier then anything else as pure bulk was a major factor in it so it has a lot of room for people to hang out. Be warned though, in ship to ship warfare it is surprisingly weak for its size and can merely survive bombardment but not necessarily return it.

Your attempt to train with Song Yi herself goes about as well as Lin Sun’s in the past.

 

Kikai Senso:

Teozix makes a brief return to the university life as he pays a visit to the Aetas university and just kind of hangs out a little bit and offers a lot of “Vithanyalai had ____” to unintentionally remind them that the god of knowledge made a much better university in that innocent robotic flatness that lacks any snark thus making it sting all the more. He wasn’t asked to come back.

 

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SenshiCon! Also expect minor time skips soon-ish.

Shentu Wo: 2485 Power, 3,344  Followers
Kikai Senso: 9,418 Power, 145 Followers, Next Form Progress: 27%
Lin Sun: 699 Power, 695 Followers
Con Lai: 6757 Power, 2,621 Followers
Caine: 3916 Power, 1,823 Followers
General:

Song Yi decides this is getting ridiculous and just summons all your crossover training champions to the conveniently constructed super large arena in the blood jungle so the attempt to get each champion trained by another god’s specialist champ stops getting unnecessarily complicated. Everyone step into your local dream door, and come to Senshi-Con. Its held during the crimson fist off season so its not like anyone else was using the arena. Also the healers at the arena are rather exploitable in case someone accidentally lethals someone else.

After years of brutal war and excessive violence, Senshi Con turns out to be a rather good idea for the champion level characters. The Crimson Fist is only for amateurs, but Senshi Con becomes the sort of pro-level event with its style swapping, sparring matches, and Carmilla’s bright idea to have a champion level friendly tournament. Akhetaten declined to show up as they don’t know you guys that well right now.

bracket<- Tournament bracket and results. There were a few surprises and several people got sent into terrible matchups for themselves, but all in good fun anyways.

Takeshi fought Song Yi, with Song not using any of her powers or her actual spirit blade, and he managed to actually last longer then her opening hit. In the end though, he’s not quite on her level. Though to even it out, Raijin beat her again. She still hasn’t quite caught up to his level either.

Meanwhile the event was largely successful and a welcome distraction for a week or two from the ongoing apocalypse where gods and heroes are dropping like flies. So back to the apocalypse now.

The Drakon seem to be basically killing demons 20 to 1, but pull relatively even with Jakaal. Indicating that despite their power the dragon aspect does not mean tier zeroes for everybody. In fact, the Drakon have become notably terrified of the monster known as Vo Kim who has taken down 6 dragon striders by himself and only Dmitry has survived coming face to face with him.

Though for the most part, the Drakon colony force is able to set up comfortably in the Jade Empire and push the demons back as they grow more careful. Nazarius is inhumanly intelligent but his strategies prove to be weaker then Azazels and despite having a vastly superior military force, Azazel’s cunning use of his assets is taking a toll on the Drakon.

Meanwhile, Akhetaten is now one of the super power nations having taken over Thykenae and they seem content to mind their own business for now and develop their new acquisitions. Some evil cult sprouted up from the remains of Thykenae and offer active resistance though. Its actually very similar to whats happening in Svarga all things considered.

 

Shento:

Envoy Work:  Divus Altepetl and Akhetaten join along the alliance to create possibly the largest stretch of allies territory in the Era’s history. Shenlong however feels the need to probe into the matter some more, given the situation he’s in with most of his pantheon and population dead or dying. Bahamut remains vehement in protecting his nation of castaways and doesn’t like the concept of the Drakon mindset towards his people or even his fellow pantheon members.

In sending the vampires up there you wind up hitting the exact thing that lurks in the wild lands west of the jade empire and south of Si Da, the Jakaal. This excursion did not last long.

Reports from Jade spies turns out to be pretty uneventful. Even the noble houses are collapsing under the Si Da assault as many of the upper lords have been assassinated by the Siwang of the Black Pantheon, who know how to kill Jade nobles very well. The Drakon scout force turns out to be quite welcome, even if Nazarius is an undead dracolich thing, he is nice to see on their side and boosts morale. Many people seem to think this Drakon thing isn’t such a bad idea given the current alternatives.

One of the colonies along the coast in Divya have been wiped out by a vampire tribe gone rogue, primarily composed of Tyrant members although a little bit of everyone is in it. The remaining ones all get those anti air siege weapons under construction though it will take awhile to build enough to create ballista bolt clouds as without the original Kagayakashi it takes awhile to mass produce weaponry.

In the meantime, Ailani becomes edumacated by the general Aetas instead of Vris directly. Vris has a lot to do and Ailani cannot learn with Vris’ kids because they’re basically those nerds whose mother forced them through AP Calc at age 9. So Ailani lacks the educational background the elves have to sit in their classes and just gets lost. While learning about exploration and archeology she keeps getting bored and zoning out, so far her retention of the subjects are not going well.

 

Lin Sun:

While the Aetas school of Black Magic and Mysticism is nowhere near as complete as one might dream, it is functional enough for the time being. Some thykenian refugees have taken up well in the scholarly environment, more so then your closest neighbors at least. Too bad they don’t really talk about history, more so philosophy.

Vris gives you a funny look at the implication she isn’t giving her children a decent education. Her kids look at you with desperate and pleading eyes for a rescue.

Kahl remains quite fond of his shell. He humors you enough while you attempt to socialize with him but when you’re not directly focusing on him he goes back to being his quiet and largely observant self.

Due to how Hayate’s powers work, he doesn’t really have much reason to train with Maona. Maona doesn’t have a combat style, just a planning and execution. When he attacked Rackham he just literally bit Rackham’s hand and kicked at him like a cat. There is no real technique here, just objective and execution. Though he can already beat up Vris before she even teaches him anything as he learned ever combat style she knew while she was trying to hit him with it.

Kaisa, Hayate, Vris, Vris’ kids, Zhi…Kahl…and really half the Aetas officers go to Senshi-Con. Kaisa wound up getting cocky about her skills and challenged the leader of the Senshi, Ira, to a sparring duel. Su Shento was unable to heal the damage to her pride. Hayate continues to make jokes about it weeks later.

Hayate’s trip was a lot more beneficial as he could test the limits of his new aspect ability, while it is pretty potent he still cannot overcome many opponents, maybe if he became more powerful by munching on some people his aspect ability would become even better or had a strength blessing to keep up with the super physique of Senshi. Either way, he was eliminated from a tournament by Nila Bhatt. He argues there is no technique in shooting your opponent with guns like hers.

Also Kaisa lost a bet and had to go to the convention “with” Hayate.

Con Lai:

Hanzo’s aspect is darkness.

The army/navy continue to colonize the island chain and the maritime culture becomes more and more significant. Turns out the ex-pirates are particularly good at living on the islands because in Atlantis they had to boat around for transit a lot, so short hops via boat are not strange to them.

The Ocean Boat for Hope sets sail, this could take awhile (or a time skip) before they turn out any real progress.

An Lahn has no ability to cause damage from the dream realm to their physical body, this is actually been why he’s such an effective torturer in the past. The problem is his questioning methods require them to stay asleep, and his torturous nightmares tend to jolt people awake if they aren’t asleep via medicine or his own powers.

After being so cooperative with Song Yi about the doors in Taiyo she gives Jin one of the spirit blades Senshi use. The particular one she gave Jin has elemental spirits in it and as a result is capable of elemental amplification. Turning jin’s .5 fire aspect into a much more potent ball of fire and destruction then he would normally be capable of. It also can be reshaped into any weapon shape, which matches well with his abilities. He beat people up at Senshi-con using it in the shape of a square as a joke.

Though there is still now way to make him stronger without the nibbling on people, and as he is not a member of the Holo Eka the hunt trophies don’t work for him.

 

Caine:

The demon hunting team has an easier startup with Fuma since he’s been at the job for awhile. The Dragon Hunters not so much as there is a lot of speculation and no one has actually fought a dragon before so its a lot of theorycrafting. Hopefully it survives first contact.

The spirits are actually just as surprised as the gods of every pantheon that there’s an eastern land full of dragons and the dragons are quite surprised there is a western land full of not-dragons. In the past dragons have been fought with other dragons, notably Shenlong/Ryujin vs Otoroshi. Dragon aspected people that have shown up from time to time have all been physically gifted and had to be taken down by equally elite warriors.

The hunt for Otoroshi turns into quite the adventure. Otoroshi was the last apocalypse 2000 years ago and the details and relics surrounding him are often considered taboo objects to be seeking out. The hunt is ongoing but it was in neither easy location and the team sent to get them are traveling to Shahira following a lead.

In the meantime, team demon hunter goes through basic exercises as Fuma needs to get everyone in proper demon hunting shape. They seem to be focusing mostly on agility training over anything else. They can be found jogging, stretching, and practicing parkour.

About everyone points out the Artemis might either take awhile for Lo’c to make or won’t really be up to kraken hunting. The Kraken took out 2 ships in the Vua Cai’s fleet while they had someone who could see the future combating it, and the Vua Cai ships include ironclad ships or better, fighting the Kraken with a single ship will take a very big ship. For now its considered to be an “under construction” project.

Ilo Hae’s campaign for cave living is going pretty well, the hunters aren’t really that adverse to sneaking into a cave at the end of the day so that goes fairly well and the underworld that Song Yi constructed beneath the nation is vast so there is plenty of space for people to live comfortably in. While many in Holo Eka tend to be a bit claustrophobic about living underground, the giant undead dragon flying around the east is a really good motivator.

Also Half your champs take a week off for Senshi Con.

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Roster Update!

The other teams were getting jealous that I kept giving you guys so many characters. So I call this roster update “OH COME ON!” since we’re introducing some of the world’s other badasses.

 

hatsheOh yeah, she’s overpowered as shit and is also kind of the empress or princess depending how you look at it. Horus is the eternal pharoah, and Hatshe is his daughter and chosen high prophet. Meaning she is the mortal with the highest authority in all of Akhetaten since Horus is classified as a god. Given her father, she is a demigod.

With the high prophet blessing of Horus, she has the aspect blessing of every other god in the pantheon. She can control the sands, summon dead spirits, send people to said spirits, cause massive windstorms, and trigger war buffs for entire armies.

 

resephA “gift” from Shahira to Hatshe. He is a part of the Bakkali family and gender roles be damned he was presented as a husband to Hatshe.

So he got the blessings of Horus too. Exact same powers. Fortunately he’s far less dangerous then she is, has had less time to learn how to use them and isn’t a demigod. He is actually more carefully guarded then she is, because he’s way more vulnerable. He still commands some of the military though, and his command has grown significantly since taking over Thykenae.

 

menesDespite his immense power, scary outfit, and powerful voice – Menes is a pretty nice guy. As the high prophet of Anubis his primary duties usually involve managing the main temple and helping the grieving with passing their family on to the next cycle. Along with burial rites. He won’t be on the battlefield unless shit has gone wrong.

His power is to entomb. The dead and dying that pass through his hands enter a strange immaterial storage he controls. Anyone whose death he has entombed does not pass on to whatever awaits and he has the ability to summon them as spirits to serve him. Beware the ghost army.

sihetOne of the primary war leaders for Bastet’s forces, she leads her own army and is one of the major vanguard generals. Perhaps one of the more feared members of Akhetaten’s champions given that she is a part of the more aggressive section of it. The other champions listed so far tend to stay at home, Sihet is the first one you’ll meet if Akhetaten is on the offense.

Her ability is geomancy, though due to her native environment she is most comfortable and creative when that comes in the form of sand. That won’t stop her from just throwing a rock at you if that’s what she has to work with though. Beware sandstorms if you know she’s in it, usually its just a blender.

RannoOne of Horus’ daughters, she is the younger sister of Hatshe but found her calling in the temple of Osiris.

She has the power of Reincarnation. She can assure that the dead pass through the domain of Osiris to be renewed and born again somewhere in the nation. She has a convenient synergy with Menes, as he can hand her a bulk of souls to renew into the world. All high prophets of both Anubis and Osiris have had this relationship as long as Akhetaten has stood.

Ranno has one additional and very specific power with reincarnation. If they are a reincarnated soul, she can return their memories to them should they make their way to her once again. Many people make a traditional pilgrimage to her to see if they had a former life.

bakatA champion of Inuit and another member of the vanguard that often can be found near Sihet. Bakat falls in line as being one of the more command savvy champions. Her power over the skies comes from both her aspect blessing and her familiarity with sky spirits, allowing her to alter weather patterns dramatically. Unlike most mystics who can use sky spirits to similar effect, because Bakat also has the sky as an aspect blessing she doesn’t really need the spirits and can actually override them. However, she prefers the synergy to get more potent results.

 

mach tongAmaterasu typically prefers utility champions or just a bunch of prophets. She isn’t really one for violence, but in these uncertain times sometimes you just need a dependable guy to go fuck something up.

Mach Tong is a native to Si Da and is actually a survivor and 4th place runner of the Iron Fist from many years ago. His abilities allow him to create hardened light, similar to a spirit blade but in practice its more like a manifestation aspect.

His favorite is called the hammer of dawn.

 

CrocellDespite Asmodaeus being primarily seen as a guy that gets everything done himself, he is still a demon prince and firstborn son to Lucifer. So he has an entire legion of demonic minions and none are more terrifying then Crocell.

Crocell is a demon who looks like a rather attractive man so usually people don’t notice, as he doesn’t even have the eyes of a black mage. There is no indication that he is pure terror. His power is inherited from Asmodaeus and is known as command. People do what he says, including “kill yourself”. Its like a weaker Eli. A comparison which pisses him off given that he is older and sees himself as the original. Its made worse by the fact that Eli doesn’t even seem to care enough to acknowledge the potential rivalry’s existence.

DemogorgonAlso known as “The Devourer”. He’s actually a black mage and at some point just decided to rename himself as a demon because his name was the equivalent of “Jim” and he felt it wasn’t intimidating enough.

Demogorgon has an aspect power to consume anything, and with the power of Mammon he can consume a lot of it. He grows stronger the more things he consumes, and it is most evident when he consumes humans and gains more black magic power. His regeneration and strength are very closely tied to how much he has eaten and he can be exhausted of power and permanently weakened. But he can also reach Ryner levels of physical power in exchange as long as he finds enough things to eat.

 

baraquielOne of Azazel’s demon officers, commander of demons and black mages alike. Baraquiel has the boring power of wielding hellfire, which many other demons can do. That’s kind of the dime a dozen power among them and Daezra is honestly better at it…and he’s a human.

Fortunately, or unfortunately for the reader, his skill lies in his ability to command strategically. Similar to his master Azazel, he is a thinking man and plans his maneuvers carefully, and with Azazel’s aspect blessing he can create war aspect buffs across his forces.

 

moraxusLess commanding, more face punching. Moraxus is just the kind of guy to straight murder you and is one of Azazel’s few champions purely dedicated to offense over strategy. He does command a demon platoon and leads them to battle, but he primarily acts under the command of other major players and is most often deployed to break enemy formations with a mixture of brute force and fear.

He has the classical ability to wield hellfire and a highly advanced physique, but some suspect the fear he creates might be supernatural as even some of the most well drilled of men flee in terror. Then again that could just be intelligence on their part.

vo kimThe current “prince” of the Jakaal. With Ningi No Mikoto dead by way of Eli, Vo Kim takes the title. As a black mage he has a dark aspect and can plunge the world around him into darkness. As the high prophet of Shen Rai, he has inherited Shen’s teleportation and the power to make anything he kills stay dead.

Vo Kim is one of the most feared warriors in the world for obvious reasons. Fighting a teleporting permakilling Jakaal grandmaster in total darkness is not an appetizing prospect to anyone.

 

 

van djaoSong Fang’s replacement. He was 6th but then he ate Tai ket when Tai Ket was injured fighting Song Yi at Songbowl. He’s not nearly as big a threat as Fang, and depending on the situation you might fear Vo Kim more. That being said, Van Djao wields the coveted destruction aspect, and is so powerful with it that he is the first avatar and not a champion or prophet.

Celebrated the nation over as the greatest of all serial killing mass murdering cannibals, though as you know the public doesn’t quite see it that way.  Van Djao has the power to simply unmake things (and people) with his gaze alone. We know it has limitations, but we don’t know enough.

 

ruslanThe last update was fairly large and I forgot to introduce him with the other striders. Ruslan is a strider from the east, a blood dragon aspect. He came to see what this whole blood beacon thing Shento apparently totally forgot about was.

As with all dragon aspects, he is a physical monstrosity and he wields the blood aspected power of hemomancy. While Dmitry’s regeneration is still far more advanced, Ruslan’s is higher then the average strider would have.

 

 

hei langHei Lang is Song Yi’s pet giant wolf spirit that follows her around. To the mystics who can barely perceive it, it is a looming darkness and ball of malevolence following her around. To those who can hear it, Hei Lang is surprisingly charismatic and doesn’t sound that spooky at all. He is the same kind of evil as Asmodaeus, wickedly charismatic and fiendishly clever. He is blamed for some of the recent bursts of violence in the east before Song dragged him home with her as her pet. As a result, it has been kept in careful check since falling under her care as it seems to be one of the most dangerous of the dark spirits and capable of causing mass mayhem and anarchy if left alone too long. Freyja is somewhat bothered by a spirit as violent and clever as Hei Lang being constantly around Song Yi though.

MaquillaA good old fashioned Altepetl guy with an axe. Maquilla is one of those front line warriors leading the charge and has the blessings of Bahamut. Though he has a pure strength blessing instead of power or aspect and as a result has the physical attributes of a black mage, including basic regeneration and superior strength. Its not terribly exciting but Altepetl isn’t exactly geared to fight Si Da or Drakon. Which was why they made that thing with Saldis in the first place.

 

 

ShappaSometimes people forget that Ishtar is a war aspect as well, and despite the sex cult thing she’s most known for she does have quite a heavy stake in the nation’s most powerful warriors. The sex cult just happens to fuel her with the power to spread her blessings to lots of warriors.

Shappa has the powers of Ishtar’s war aspect and gains strength the more enemies he fights and the longer he fights. While a lot of Altepetl prefer to skirmish, Shappa is a bit more of a long haul combatant.

 

 

leytiAnother of Ishtar’s chosen warriors, Leyti’s weapon is remniscent of Song Yi’s old mountain sword and can summon blizzards and freezing winds. Ishtar gave her a more strength oriented blessing recently to give her the power needed to go up against the black mages of Si Da.

In general Leyti roams around and was one of those who decided to fight the zombie apocalypse solo, which is how she made a name for herself when she single handedly took down a bone golem.

 

 

aiyanaShe is formerly from a western pagan tribe that raided trading caravans. She has more modernized armaments as a result, but eventually she found her way to Altepetl and a purpose working for Pele. Also a steadier paycheck.

With Pele’s blessing, Aiyana wields fire. Its pretty simple.

 

 

 

kachinaAlso known as the viper, or “the snake bitch”. Kachina’s blessings gave her a series of spiritual powers related to the snakes that range from summoning them to imitating their venoms. She is also immune to all other venom and poison as a result.

As a follower of the Raven, she is one of the more powerful shaman’s in the nation to accompany her devious hit and run fighting skills.

 

 

shiyeAnother of the nation’s super shamans that work for The Raven goddess. Shiye wields specialized weapons that can attack spiritual beings as well as physical ones and they seem to be especially powerful against anything non-mortal such as demons, dream denizens, spirits, and angels.

Shiye is one of the new champions practically made in a rush after the Saldis problem to try and get some things together in the event Si Da, Drakon, or Akhetaten come after them.

 

It seems the people like tier lists, so here is a new updated tier list. I will reiterate that the tier lists are assuming they stepped into an arena blind with no idea who their opponent is or what they can do. Maona is a good example of the flaw in the tier list, he is ranked pretty low if he were to blindly walk into an opponent in an arena environment yet he’s taken down the tier 0 Alday in 2 rounds before. It also doesn’t count minions, so war commanders might not be properly represented in where they do well. Really this only is a measure of head on 1 on 1 punchfist ability, so most assassins, commanders, planners, and supporters tend to not score well. However, I have not listed anyone in tier 0 that are gimmick reliant. Meaning if they’re in tier 0, you can take their powers away and they still have enough combat experience and expertise to beat an opponent who also had their powers taken away (or sometimes even against an opponent with powers). Gimmicks that just work stupidly well in a blind arena fight get stuck in tier 1 if the wielder isn’t a combat master. I.e. Crocell is a terrible fighter, but his ability would pretty much auto win the tier listing arena fight.

Tier 0: Saint Naomi, Ryner, Vassago, Vo Kim, Van Djao, Nazarius, Hatshe

Tier 1: Saint David, Akasiya, Sahar Tahani, Kaja Molum, Takeshi, Hasin Bava, Jin Zhang, Ira, Gaetan, Sanyar, Eli Pierce, Swain, Moraxus, Dmitry, Alyosha, Ruslan, Helaku, Sihet

Tier 2: Milenkosi, Jakaal/Praeliator Master, Kulina, Hercules, Anna Goethe, Hasina, Kaisa, Kazuo, Rikuto, Roku, Jericho, Malati, Johnathan Zhi, Hayate Hirata, Aiko, Mach Tong, Galina, Maquilla,

Tier 3: Average Jakaal/Praeliator, Senshi Masters, Upper Templar,Saint Andrew, Saint Chloe, Saint Jacob, Shichiro, Arima Naoko, Kekoa, Kahl Jung, Nila Bhatt, Neil Macleod, Daezra, Maliken, Innokenti, Nadejda, Aiyana, Shappa, Leyti, Menes

Tier 4:  Carmilla, Average Senshi, Templar, Mazaki, Saint Caleb, Daisuke, Vris, Sofia, Lavet, Saint Rachel, Eliza Rackham, Shiye, Kachina, Bakat, Prince Reseph

Tier 5: Siwang Assassin, Teijin Monk, Average Lengdonian or Phoenix clan, Rajput Soldier, Su Shento, Gorou, Hei Lang, Akamu, Logan, Maona, Fuma Kawakami, Demogorgon, Baraquiel, An Lanh Tien

Tier 6: Lo’c Thua, Teozix, Rena, Malu Jio, Alexandria, Ishikama Hanzo, Mulgogi, Ilo Hae, Ranno

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2 Years Later

Stories of Lore 20 (may want to start here)

Shentu Wo: 2636 Power, 2,936 Followers
Kikai Senso: 9,318 Power, 135 Followers, Next Form Progress: 27%
Lin Sun: 480 Power, 350 Followers
Con Lai: 6613 Power, 2, 458 Followers
Caine: 3511 Power, 1,561 Followers

General News:

Thykenae rolled a 3.

Twice.

It has been just basically raped. Somehow 12 gods got beaten by 4, not just distracted into stopping their attack on Divus…outright beat. Bastet and her forces rolled over them with a K:D of 8 to 1 and at this point Thykenae’s track record is so bad its kind of a running joke.

Thykenae as a nation has disbanded because this is just embarrassing and at this point its time for them to just bow out before this gets any worse. Temples are gone, cities are razed, just…just throw in the towel already. Akhetaten now shares power with Divus as the major super powers of the west because look at all this fertile farmland they just annexed from their desert. They’re quite happy and uh…expect them to get a big roster update soon because heroes were definitely made in this war. Some Thykenian gods remain with Akhetaten, some are dead, uh..thats a thing.

Divus has retreated from the war with Si Da after three years because they’ve taken significant damage and they still never fully recovered from the last crusade, plus Thykenae attacked them back home its a bit of a mess.

The Jade Empire has started to push Si Da back a bit after they were distracted with fighting Divus to their west for awhile, and then suddenly some new dragon showed up with a whole team of dragon aspected warriors to retake the Imperial throne as an offer of embassy toward Shenlong. They appear to be explorers from the far east who came after all that dark magic got their attention. Speaking of which…

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Drakon Imperiya hails from the east. As you may have guessed, the dragon empire is very heavily focused on dragons. In their society dragons rule over all men, keeping humans as pets or servants. As is well known, the dragon aspect is very powerful and it is not unreasonable that a culture developed centered around those who have it. They seem unaware of the Ascension event or how it has really impacted things. They do not seem aware that dragon aspect humans can ascend into dragons. We’re not entirely sure if we should tell them that though.

One particularly notable feature Shento may have noticed about their “ambassadors” is that every single one of them has a dragon aspect. The breeding in their empire has been so selective for so long that they have dragon aspects by the thousands. Those without the aspect seem to be slaves. It stands to reason that this privately funded scouting team is only an omen of what could come visit later on.

Social Hierarchy

The Dragon Striders are the lowest class of dragons though they have their own hierarchy since they are the most populous. They are technically just black mages with dragon aspects, humans without dragon aspects are referred to as humans but that word is synonymous with many degrading connotations.

The Dragon Whelps are the next tier up, these are full dragons the form associated with the word. There are many of them and they tend to gather throughout the land at random. Whelps will sometimes enslave a human here and there to try and move up the social ladder by having their own champion. The general rule to upgrading from a whelp is to come into the possession of at least one hundred people.

The Dragon Masters are fully grown and powerful creatures. The barrier for entry is, as stated, to have command of over at least one hundred subjects. While slaves are acceptable, the prestige of having a dragon strider and whelp population is significantly larger.

The Dragon Lords are the guys who own cities and usually the associated lands that make up the territory. Most territories are similar to our nations, except instead of villages and settlements scattered throughout the land almost all of the population is pulled together into a few supermassive cities to showcase the power of the dragon lord. The surrounding territory is considered to be the city’s for providing resources to its people. While some territories will have farmlands away from the major city, this is not preferrable and will usually barely have any population.

Vechnost is the final authority in the Drakon Imperiya. There is no title like ‘dragon god’ or ‘dragon king’ for him. As far as the Imperiya knows there has always been and only is Vechnost. In terms of power he is on the level of Jehova.

 

Judging by Eret’s prophecy and Raijin/Fujin’s experience with meeting them, they aren’t here as diplomats. Freyja has suddenly been really friendly toward Bahamut though. On the upside, while we know that we’re royally screwed if they have anywhere near what they claim to have back home we still have a lot more time before they start coming over in large numbers and this scouting force seems to be spending time trying to get in Shenlong’s good graces and recruit him to their empire.

People have started moving to the underworld none the less though, as now it makes some sense why. Dragons can fly, and flying dragons can generally breathe death all over surface cities.

Shento:

Kaja and the Order go zombie slaying. This is extremely one sided because armored calvary beats shambling flesh. Good practice for the squires though.

Anna eventually does root out hidden deathspeakers who stayed loyal to Saldis and helped her enact her revenge. Unfortunately she also rooted out several normal people that she killed for various reasons or another claiming them to be suspects. Essentially some of her inquiring was not particularly well received, and so those who tried to impede her for any reason wound up dead.

The attempt to civilize the Svargan mafia does not go terribly well. For the first few months they seem to put up with it but as they become angstier, and the vampires rule over the jungles of Koko they opt to just be sneakier about the murders in Svarga. Then Anna got there after the Altepetl thing was dealt with.

Anna winds up killing the former yet still kind of criminal gang’s leader twice (the sucessor) before they get with the program. She may have killed several more and there are stories of her brutality floating around.

Over time the crime ring does start to establish more legitimate trade and becomes a bit better behaved though if anything this makes them even more comparable to a mafia because now they all have that layer of civility barely concealing their more sinister mannerisms. Taking cue from the lessons of Anna, their “law enforcement” is basically still a gang. There is still law and civility, its just the method of enforcement can sometimes border on insane as city police show up to drag offenders out of their homes and enact justice without much semblence of trial. With the cult of Holo Eka stopping the bounty hunting shenanigans though it definitely leaves the ruling family to take up the slack of hunting criminals in their own fashion.

WAAAAGH!

They’re becoming adults now, they grow up so fast…well because you made them mature in 10 years. But the sentiment is still the same right?

akamu

The current leader of the Orcs chosen by way of “no one remaining objected”. Despite how grim that sounds, he actually got the position because he kept giving orders and people stopped objecting. Kind of mundane really, but as they all grew up together with the exception of Kekoa, he was just sort of the “big brother” of the first generation. As a result he has a particularly caring and gentle manner despite the scars he got from meeting the black mages of Koko Mulum.

 

 

kekoaThe black sheep of the orc family, Kekoa grew up following Ailani around. Very different lifestyle. He always had to prove himself a worthy guardian of the blood god’s child and would intentionally pick fights with the monsters of the jungle that they called men to hone his skills as he realized he was maturing much faster then his companion, and that his job was likely to persist on into adulthood.

Unlike Akamu or the other orcs, Kekoa is mean as shit and will crush your skull in if you look at him wrong. He recently succeeded in the Crimson Fist tournament.

 

At 10 years old Ailani manifested her powers…just because she felt like it. Though given the track record of demigods born from gods, it does seem to be  a trend that they don’t need black magic to activate their aspect powers. Ailani is only ten and has very little control or mastery over her abilities, but she already demonstrated hemomantic capabilities, but more importantly she can upgrade people’s power around her. All black mages near her become more powerful, the effect is currently minor but the child shows potential. She has exploited her ability to attract a following of people that she takes on adventures through the jungle whenever she feels like it, Carmilla banned her from her personal manor though. Something about the kid’s effects on the glamor power being a very unsuitable environment for children. Despite the many tours of the land from pops, Ailani

Con Lai:

As ordered by Song Yi, the gates were opened at Sekai Taki and along the northwestern border of Taiyo in the wild lands where people could flee to. Some have instead fled south for the gate at Svarga depending on distance but in all the bulk of them have decided to leave Taiyo itself.

The dream realm is a bit flooded with refugees…again. This seems to be a common occurrence, thankfully Milenkosi seems to calm people down just by being near the portals they come through, which is strange given its a giant lion. Most people are scared of lions after all.

One of the two major shinobi chapters has taken residence in the dream realm for now. The other chapter moved to Holo Eka.

Sanyar has acquired a few palace treasures from Taiyo and in his recurring theme of art Appraisal has delivered a presentation on it to the sleeping lords, most specifically the ever-curious purple one. It went like this:

“See here, this piece depicts sexual intimacy between two people. This is considered ‘smut’ by the general art community.”
“Wait I thought they liked nature scenes?”
“Apparently sex is not natural.”
“How do they reproduce?”
“Sex.”
“Humans are stupid.”

Malati has joined Jin’s personal team of misfits and the power blessing allows her to take another individual with her for a longer distance then she could do previously.

The food struggle seems to be alleviated within the first few months after everything settled down a bit and Song came back to get the spirits back to work, so at least that has gone well in feeding the people. Though by now Svarga has already gone through so much chaos that providing it with food no longer alleviates its political state.

As a military update, the navy remains the Vua Cai’s strongest point and emphasis given its necessity in the trade networks. The army has grown quickly as its a rather cushy job all things considered, it doesn’t really go to front line against the big scary guys like the Crimson Order. The marines are just basically legal pirates and part of the navy as is. Most of the sailors know boarding practices anyways.

ishikawaAlright lets face it, if he has a card he’s not a harmless old man. Ishikama Hanzo, the master shinobi. Posing often as a harmless old man, Ishikama has traveled the world with nothing more then an opium pipe and sometimes some other implement.  While some members of the Shinobi wear black masks and wield exotic weapons for combat assassination, Ishikama is more of the subtle type. He sometimes takes awhile to complete a mission, and is less effective against targets who can regenerate, but he’s very good at solving political rivalries. Also he’s in charge of the house that now lives in the dream realm and often acts as their trainer and administrator.

 

Caine:

You stalk friendly gods around, they find this a little weird.

Logan and team go with the crimson order to go zombie hunting, mostly focusing on strays, tracking, and camp security rather then full frontal assault on large hordes which are left to the knights in heavy armor.

Nila Bhatt turns out to be particularly cheap against zombies because she has a ranged weapon and they are zombies. She’s also awfully lucky at shooting off limbs and joints.

Gaetan is just on a level where zombies don’t matter to him so he just kills a bunch as they travel around Altepetl with the crimson order.

The life story of Mulgogi: Covered in the stories of lore because its too long to fit in here

Due to Maona’s aspect being a morph he actually just gets more physically powerful like a strength blessing but it includes his senses as well.

Mulgogi goes fishing.

fumaThe opposite end of the spectrum from Ishikawa, Fuma is made to kill black mages, demons, and what have you. Armed to the teeth and specialized in stealth via sneaking around in the dark. While he has less ability to penetrate populated areas and prefers to ambush in forests, he has extremely progressed combat abilities and trap laying skills. While he suffers from a lack of practicing black magic himself, his ambush techniques make him adept at killing targets before they have a  chance to showcase whatever powers might give them an advantage over him.

 

As one of the current major food providers Holo Eka has received some of the incoming refugees from Taiyo, including the crazy exotic weapons Shinobi House, to shelter for the time being if nothing else to make logistics a bit easier.

Lin Sun:

Vris is now high prophet, making her high prophet however turns out to have weird effects on her powers. She still remembers everything, but now she can alter things around her to be as she remembers them. Uh…the city isn’t cracked anymore so thats cool. While the power has some logistical limits especially considering consumable resources, she still has a lot of power to restore things through time powers. This does not include healing or altering people though, it seems to extend mostly to object restoration.

Over time Freyja is eventually less mopey but she still doesn’t seem interested in getting back together with someone who had her ambushed, chained up, and then did the exact thing she said was going to get them killed…and getting killed. Something about trust and silly pride…you are distinctly aware that is hypocritical given her history but your keen instinct tells you saying so will only make this situation worse.

Song’s basic response: “You killed civilians in your way first. As champion of those I supposedly rule, I am literally dictated by my abilities to mirror my society. There is no moral high ground here, I am a reflection of the kingdom whether I agree with you all or not.”

Getting Kaisa reigned in isn’t hard, she shapes up pretty quick once your back but Vris is aware that Kaisa is a true Si Da black mage. She is with the team as she is loyal, but without a leash she acts like a Jakaal almost and just starts hunting down victims to prove herself against. Ever since her first touch with large scale battles she seems to have fallen in love with it, and is basically a walking ball of cocky violence.

About that ‘moving underground thing’. You still have that giant suspended city in the cavern, so…that was easy.

Getting to know people:

Kahl is from Si Da natively and followed along when the Aetas left to Hale’a. Originally his powers were uncontrollable and he would summon things at random but over time he learned to control it. Though the phase where he couldn’t left him often isolated because summoning tigers was kind of bad for social conductivity, as a result he’s been a bit of a quiet person ever since and is used to just minding his own business until otherwise needed.

Lavet shares some similar traits of being reclusive but for the reason that she just doesn’t like people and has become very comfortable in the total silence zones she can create. She babysits for Vris sometimes and takes care of the kids as well as acting as an assistant around the library as needed. She doesn’t talk much, and kind of creeps people out.

John Zhi is the child of an eastern father and a western mother, really the story of his parents is long and fascinating as the two travelers met from opposite sides of the world and traveled the land together. If anything he actually has more to say about the adventures of his parents, who are now an old couple that lives in Aetas and invite you for tea, then his own. He hasn’t had much opportunity to truly acquire his own legacy when compared to the likes of those around him in the Aetas and is basically just a grunt soldier for now. Though, like Mazaki, he used to be one of the time cops and was pretty good at spotting people hiding anything from him.

Recently with the incoming members of Taiyo being sent in bulk to Aetas lands because well…you have the space. Your city is getting a bit crowded again, though this is generally good news at least. Up until now you’ve never been particularly scary on the black mage field so they’re comfier hanging out with you then Shento for now at least. We’ll see how things go after the knowledge at all cost thing gets into high gear.

hayateAs part of Raijin and Fujin’s agreement with Song, some members of their nation have entered into the service of other gods here to sort of help with the integration front. Though we’re pretty sure Hayate joined the Aetas because he thinks Kaisa is cute. He’s pretty laid back and finds the Aetas mission statement interesting, that and the libraries are pretty fascinating too and he’s been spending time with Vris and Lavet.

He has no black mage abilities since he’s from Taiyo, but instead has a spiritual sword that gives him the ability to summon and wield fire. If his name wasn’t a giveaway, he’s a former member of the Phoenix Clan.

 

Kikai:

With the influx of Taiyo natives, Daisuke has actually become an important PR guy…because he speaks their language fluently. The city of Kagayakashi has also grown significantly in the last few years thanks to help from the incoming and along with the vampire assistance. With Eret’s doomsday close at hand, Kaga might become the new capital of Hale’a at the rate it is expanding and becoming an important piece of the underworld society.

Song makes Kagayakashi start looking into sustainability for non-jinko since it might be important in the near future, so now you have weird cave mushroom farms in some places of the city, at least they are easy to maintain and just need water, plus forge fires turn out to be good for cooking them.

The strike team is assembled as well for whenever they need to be sent out to do anything, with the more heavy hitting team lead by Shichiro and the stealthier special ops team led by

RokuWith the death of Akio and Kikai’s demand for a special forces team, the project had to be revisited. All of its members are the sort of mix-matched projects from Siwang and Yi projects to create a specialist team with a whole new model line. But the team leader was a pure project shade model and is a stealth and assassination expert. He’s also pretty handy with a bow and is said to be so sneaky that he can infiltrate a city with only a rice hat to disguise himself. He, like the rest of the team, have mounted wrist blades in the forearm. Also like the rest of the team, he has a sword for more…direct confrontations.

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