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TVC - Chapter 41 - The Point of No Return

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Disciple of Nagash

The Perverted One
Staff member
#1
V'azrin stood atop the ruined wall, looking at the vast army arrayed before him. The Carstein controlled portion of the Council's army had been well over half, and combined with the dead that the Legions of Nagash that had been left behind it had created a host that was now over twice the size of the Council's remaining army.

To one side stood his cabal, robes fluttering in the wind as they waited proudly by their masters side. They had long been involved in their master's plan, and to see its success in such a glorious fashion had been more than they had hoped for.

To the other side stood arrayed the leading member's of the Carsteins. At the head stood Milosh, with him Simon and Mircea. Next was Karl and the rest of his followers. Rask had been swiftly dispatched on another errand. Nagash had never forgotten nor forgiven the ratmen for assisting in his first death, and he would not allow it to happen again. Now there was a deadly vampire assassin who used to be one of their own, bearing the weapon they created, intent on nothing but destroying the Council of Thirteen. It was a fitting irony.

Then there were the others that pulled at the corners of his mid. Across the Old World every Carstein came under his sway, and started to gravitate towards him. They were instilled with a command to find him, and if they came across of the Council on their way to destroy them if possible. Soon the army before him would only be a small part of what he commanded.

"The others will not be returning. They are needed elsewhere"

As Nagash's voice boomed into V'azrin's head, he nodded in supplication.

"Yes my lord," he thought back, "what are your orders"

"Destroy the Council."

It was no more that he had expected, and yet the command filled V'azrin with a mixture of excitement, anticipation and something he would never admit to........and very faint thrill of fear. For all his confidence he had fought alongside the Council, and he knew they would not be killed easily. Worse there was one in there even his almighty magicks could not overcome, one who had beaten him twice. Lesa.

Even to think he name sent a jolt of agony through him. Memories of that damned evening rushed back, before he pushed them away just as fast. It wasn't enough though, and he could not ignore the waves of rejection and humiliation that washed over him. As they slowly faded they left behind a cold rage as they always did, and he swore that she would pay.

Looking up he saw Milosh looking at him, and a thought crossed his mind. Perhaps here was a way to kill two birds with one stone. Walking over to the Carsteins he addressed them.

"The Dark Lord has blessed us," he rasped, "we have been given the honour of hunting down and destroying the traitors. Come. We must prepare our plans before we march."


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


The Council's retreat had been far from organised. They had managed to save part of their forces, but many had been destroyed as the Carsteins had turned their own unit against them.

The Patisserie, with its thick walls and imposing bulk had proved to be a much needed safe haven for many of the fleeing, but even that in the end had been forced to retreat and more and more forces came to bear upon it.

In the end all of the Council's leaders had survived, and had met with Valda and Lady Darkmane as they fled. There had been no time to talk however, with the risk of the Scribe's forces following them. Instead upon Valda's suggestion they had entered the World's Edge mountains, to a defensible valley where they could take stock of the situation. The spellcaster's of the Council did what they could to shield their location, yet they knew it would not be long before V'azrin located them.

Lesa had been silent since V'azrin's betrayal. The turn of events, first seeing her husband, and then being betrayed by someone she thought was a friend seemed to have deeply shocked her. Still, as the Council member's met with Valda and Lady Darkmane to discuss their next plan of action she joined them, though to do what she didn't know....
 

MasterSpark

Nostalgian
Staff member
True Blood
#2
Having arrived aboard the patisserie just in time for take off, Ashlotte had paced up and down the entire construct in search of her mistress' whereabouts. Without anyone able to provide her with a sufficient answer it had taken a stern insisting by the vessel's captain Sweeney Todd before she had calmed down.

After being briefed about the current situation, Ashlotte was asked to join the remaining council members in their planning. She was also informed that the patisserie carried a few skilled craftsmen that might be able to perform some necessary repairs to her badly damaged iron frame and that they'd be unlikely to pass on the opportunity to get a hands-on display of her inner mechanics.

The only consolation to her was that the fact that she herself was still alive meant that her mistress was as well.
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#3
''So what are our plans?'' Mircea ssked pointedly to the rest of the assembled Nagashi.

''I believe that we should must as soon as possible, every minute we give our eniemes, every hour, every day, they regroup and grow stronger'' he stated.
 

Trevy the Great

Vampire Progenitor
True Blood
#4
A cry of pain echoed about the main chamber of the patisserie as Victarias and Zosz appeared in the center of the bustle of troops arriving from the battlefield, closely pursued by the traitorous Carstein forces. The cry became not so much a cry as a roar as Zosz knelt by Victarias, a hand on her breast, steadying her writhing body as his gloved fingers pulled each icy shard of steel from Victarias' frozen flesh. Some were deep, and his fingers needed to pry further into her near-solid, bloodied, charred flesh to remove them. Only when they had been extricated and the flesh thawed could the healing begin. With each new stab into her chest, Victarias let out another cry of agony, beating her head against the boards of the floor as melting tears ran down her face and spittle flew from her mouth.
 
#5
The winds picked up and dropped as Jason crashed into the earth his shadowy form straightening, as he began to move toward the Patisserie, as energy burned in his blood. His menacing wings losing there form, becoming part of his cloak once again as he entered the hulking machine. He glided through the doors into the central chamber, to see the many vampires, injured and dying on the cold floors of the fortress. Even Jason did not come out of the battle unscaled, in truth the only thing that was holding his broken body together was his cloak, which had stitched his bones together as he wore it. The energy in the cloth would eventually flow to him and heal his still seeping wounds, which dripped black blood on to the floors of the Patisserie as he examined the contents of the room.

His feral yellow eyes finally caught the sight of Lesa although her face was gaunt and troubled, deep within thought and shock, he with drew away. Best to leave her greave for now he thought, as he turned to the remaining council members who were gathered discussing the plan of retreat and caught sight of the metal maiden Ashlotte being escorted by Zaak he believed. He proceeded towards, Sweeny Todd who instructed him to follow Zaak to repair Ashlotte, as she had been damaged in battle and Jasons skills with enchantment would almost certainly be required to repair her, he grinned with delight as he followed Zaak into a work shop.
 

Voltaire

Master Necromancer
True Blood
#6
Looking among the assorted members of the Council, Valda could not help but feel incredibly smug. He had held his own council and through his own machinations had lost nothing during the war so far. The arrogance was radiating from him like a beacon of light. The Patisserie was a great sight to behold, even for Valda as he watched their surroundings. The Worlds Edge mountains had been a good retreat path. Lady Darkmane and the flock of thousands of slaves had marched this way and only inurred losses from the weak. Assessing the council, he noted how silent everyone was. Letting his eyes fall onto Lesa, Valda's arrogance waned slightly. The look shared between them was one of mutual coldness. He whispered a few words to Lesa;

"I told you this would happen."

Smiling inwardly, he turned his gaze to the rest of the Council. He knew that Lady Darkmanes forces were an hours march away, along with the Legion of Forever. He had dismounted half of the cavalry to insure blocks of elite undead within the ranks of the disciplined Dark Elves. Lady Darkmanes remit of aiding Nagash seemed severely jeopardised by these orders and Valda has insured her that aiding the council would actually benefit Nagash in the long run. It was necessary, as always to have casualties.

The Council seemed to scowl back at Valda as he smiled once more and addressed them.

"So, my brothers, what is the plan?"
 
#7
Peter slumped against the wall, surrounded by the surving loyal members of the Council. He was exhausted. Much of his army had been lost in the retreat and he lacked the strength to raise them back.

A wounded Jason limped past, but the Blood Dragon was unable to speak to him as he was led away to help to repair the iron woman, who had been damaged in the battle. Peter tried to reach out his mind to find Niklaus, but through the howling winds of magic he only got a faint echo of the Strigoi.
 
#8
Müller stood near the Von Carsteins at V'azrin's side. He knew now the reason why this Necrarch was now his master. It was the tainted blood that made him more than human.
He had long ago cast off the idea of him being Vampire, long ago outcast himself from the Von Carsteins. He didn't consider them kin, even now that it was shown they had more in common than he once thought. He didn't exactly want to be near them.
He could smell the stink of the Vampires. Grave dirt, blood, and dark magic. The smell of blood exited him. His teeth sharpened to fangs.
He was a hunter, this inaction was making him jittery.

He moved near V'azrin.
"Give me the command my master! I shall hunt them to the ends of the earth! I shall feast on their carrion flesh and bring you their polished bones as trophies! Unleash me!"
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#9
''That's what we are talking about, exactly how we are going to do that'' Mircea said, exasperated. ''Would you retrain yourself? If you charge in you will die.''
 
#10
"What is there to discuss?" Müller scoffed.
"We have greater numbers, greater power and greater unity. The prey is in flight! We should run them to ground, denying them all respite and sustenance, and when they are exhausted with fatigue and want, we attack."
Müller leered at Mircea.
"But if the prospect of battle with weary enemies intimidates you, I'm sure you can find some menial chore to do that's more befitting the level of your courage."
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#11
Mircea covered his face and sighed.

''And that is why you will never command our forces. Those who fight a battle heedless of scouting or planning will die most assuredly. Only an idiot charges into battle without those steps. If you had actually bothered to listen to my earlier comments then I was advocating we move to deny them that, but not to attack so needlessly''
 

Disciple of Nagash

The Perverted One
Staff member
#12
"Enough." V'azrin's harsh command stop the bickering before it turned into an all out argument, "we are not the Council. This is no democracy, there will be no arguments. We are here to serve the will of our Lord and nothing more."

"Then you have a plan?" Milosh questioned. Since he had revealed who he truly was he had shed the dark robe he had previously wore, replaced by the long leather coat he had wore before he was captured.

"Mircea is correct. We can not wait too long, however we should not rush in so blindly. We all know the Council, and unless any of you wish to perish in the battle, we must plan carefully how to eliminate them carefully." He paused for a moment, eyes fixed on Milosh, before finally speaking once more, "that includes your wife. She is the only one who could undermine me magically. She must be stopped and swiftly."

If Milosh felt anything at these words he gave no sign, simply acknowledging the comment with a bow of his head, before responding,
"Then it should be me who kills her." It was said with such bluntness that even V'azrin was surprised. Truly the spells worked on his mind to first make him into the Innocence, and then to become the nexus through which to control the other Carsteins, had worked well indeed.

"She still has feelings for me," Milosh continued, "I can use this against her, to enable me to get close enough to destroy her."

V'azrin nodded, a glimmer of something in his eyes at the words before addressing them as a whole once more,
What of the other's?
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#13
''That will be simple, we shall seek out the ones who are weakest against us most, and play our strengths against our weaknesses, no need to needlessly prove our strength'' Mircea commneted.

''Therefore we should use every means of obtaining victory, including sending waves of troops to weaken them, before we choose to engage in personal combat, I have no intention of fighting on my enemy's terms.''
 
#14
Müller nodded at Mircea. "I agree."
"We must also take steps to ensure our targets are isolated from the support of the other Council members. Divide and conquer, split them up and kill them one at a time."
 

Disciple of Nagash

The Perverted One
Staff member
#15
"So in my absence the Council has been replaced with drooling idiots?" Milosh's withering gaze looked over the others, before he shook his head, "they are not new born whelps. Many of them are skilled in the art of war. They will not simply split their forces and allow us to pick them off piecemeal."
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#16
''Thne we shall force them do obviously'' Mircea shot back. ''Simple, we force them into terrian that is suitable to our advantage and force them to have no choice to split up, that's why I have already sent out scouts to find the enemy''
 
#17
"I was not suggesting they do it, I was suggesting we force them to."
Müller lifted up his arms to encompass the vast Von Carstein army.
"You say their forces cannot be divided, I say you must be blind! We have already divided their forces once, it can be done again!
Doing so is a simple matter, if we divide out own, larger army, and attack them from two or more directions, they must divide or be encircled. With our larger forces, we shall have the advantage in spreading them thin."
 

Disciple of Nagash

The Perverted One
Staff member
#18
"So simple yes?" Milosh replied,"when we have already started receiving reports that they has received more troops via an unexpected quarter, and more is to arrive. You say attack them from two sides. I say you are fools if you think they will simply sit there and allow us to do so. They can move as fast as us, if not faster due to their reduced size.

He stalked round the tent, before settling in another spot.

"Split them up as we already have? What do you mean? We have done nothing! They have turned traitor to our Dark Lord's cause, and taken part of our forces. We must strike decisively , cutting down those who are essential, who are stronger, and leave the rest floundering."
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#19
''You forget, those who fight by the terms of their eneimes inevitebly lose in battle, I have enough experiance, you also forget they must eventually come to us, as we to them, a confrontation in ineviteble at this point, all we need to do is find a good place to fight'' Mircea replied.
 
#20
"Agreed." Said Müller. "A killing ground should be selected, but I still believe we must strike soon to maintain our momentum. The Council is in flight and without much direction, we should try and maintain that..."
 

Gree

Master Vampire
True Blood
#21
''-which is why I have already sent out scouts, my own personal Wolf packs to track them down, hopefully we should recive units shortfully.'' Mircea explained.
 
#22
"If more detailed information is required, I would happily accompany the wolf packs, at my Master's command."
Müller bowed to V'azrin and smiled with his sharp teeth.
"I have an affinity with the animals..."
 
#23
In another realm entirely, a chill wind rustled through the trees. One or two raised their heads as a dark, if evanescent, shadow was cast over the Patisserie. The Black Carriage made a tight turn, the Hellsteeds rotating to almost horizontal in an attempt to change the hurtling vehicle's direction. The mad driver cackled loudly and cracked the reins like whips, spurring the creatures on to greater speed. Haphazardly strapped to the roof of the Carriage was a huge pile of pulsating, green-black material. Evidently, he had needed to leave in a hurry.

As he zeroed in on the Patisserie, the Carriage begin to flicker and waver. The outline became hazy, and it seemed to fade in and out of existence. It was realized by all watching that it was on a collision course with the Patisserie, and it looked in no way like it was slowing. As it drew near to the wall, a shrill gasp could be heard, but it was followed by a relieved sigh as the coach traveled through the wall like it was no thicker than fog.

Many of the others aboard the Patisserie were shocked and horrified as a giant, stampeding coach hurtled through the walls and corridors. A wild laugh rattled through rooms and resonated in the framework itself. Suddenly, the driver fell through the cart, and commando-rolled to avoid injury. His bare torso flexed and rippled, and would have caught the attention of every female member of the audience had this been a motion picture, but it was not. Three ebony spirits burst into existence behind him, or at least appeared there. He stood in the corridor, and looked around.

Before him stood Sweeney Todd: amused, bemused and confused. Zaak smiled, baring his fangs, but held his hands up, palms forward, in a gesture of peace. He laughed once more, and stepped forward, clutching his host's hand. Speaking loudly and brusquely, he said, "Do I have permission to come aboard sir? Zaak the Uncanny, at your service." At this, he performed a humorously deep bow, before rising once more. "I take it you're the master of this here beauty?" He slapped the wall of the corridor with his hand as he continued, saying, "I'm here to find the rest of us remaining Vampires. Now that Simon's crossed over, heh, I'm a free beast. So I'm here for revenge. I say we must bind together once more, but we can talk of that later. For now, it seems I am needed." He swept past Sweeney before waiting for a response, his rudeness excused by his aura of insanity and the trio of bowing phantasms behind him.

He approached a woman who appeared to be created purely of metal, although she walked like she were injured. He approached, and without exchanging pleasantries, bent down to her abdomen. He spoke as he peered through the window to her inner workings, saying, "I'm Zaak the Uncanny, and you're hurt. I can aid you, if you like." He turned back to Sweeney, and shouted, "Do you have a workshop aboard? Of course you do, where is it?" After receiving his cue, he headed off, Ashlotte in tow. As they walked, he asked her name, how she was created and who created her.

As he approached the impending workshop, another vampire swam into view. He seemed to be going into the same room as Zaak, so he assumed he was there to help. Still reeling with all these people he didn't know, he stated his name and honorific before proceeding into the workshop.

Inside was a large working area, cluttered with no end of odds and sods. Gesturing with one hand, the three phantoms brushed past the bare torsoed Zaak, the tin woman and the other one, and caused the bits and pieces to rise into the air. They were levitated away to clear the table, but carefully placed on the floor a distance away, gently so as to preserve them.

Zaak briefly apologised before hefting the steel woman onto the table. She was much heavier than she appeared, but he was a vampire after all. He began to examine her, and asked, "So, what would appear to be the problem? And, while you're here, would you like any work done? I can see a repeating pistol in your arm working splendidly." He waited for her and the other vampire's response before he would get to work.
 

Sweeney Todd

Master Vampire
True Blood
#24
"We cannot run forever...I think it is time we prepare to make our stand. Not necessarily here exactly, but soon." Todd replied

"And by the way who are you exactly?" Todd frowned as he looked warily at Valda. He recalled seeing him during the battle against Mannfred which only made the situation more complicated as he did not understand why the one leading the third party then was now on their side.
 
#25
Jason glared at Zaak for a moment, the same cold calculating stare he gave any he came across, he bowed to him slightly " Jason Nightwere, a pleasure to make your acquaintance, Zaak the uncanny, shall we get to work on miss...?" Jason turned towards the metal madien sharply.
"Ashlotte” She said faintly, she was clearly drained of energy and struggling to keep up right, she fell back into Zaak , he lifted her up and strained only slightly at her weight, as they began proceeding into the workshop.
"Ashlotte, she seams like she could use some assistance, wouldn’t you say,? Lord Zaak" Jason’s tone was unusually cheery, while still retaining the cold stare, which followed the two for a moment as they entured the workshop.

The walls were covered with various tools and dust. Books were piled high towards the roof and It had a damp odor about it cold, yet inviting to the three, as Ashlotte was settled onto the table. Jason Prepared the materials he would require, for her pair and brought up his amber tomb the golden book of all his most well guarded secrets examining it for a few moments.

Jason still did not know the power source of the mechanical woman’s body which only intreeged him to find out. He took off his Cloak to reveal the horrific wounds in his own body, fabric twisted through his body like snakes, healing him. The wounds were deep leading in and out his sides and shoulders many of his body mass would not be attatched to him if not for the frabic holding it togeather. His body was scared and torn, glowing scars burned brightly with magic as his Feral eyes fixed onto the task at hand. His cloak now rested to the side of the work bench as he prepared and began to examine Ashlotte more closely.

Zaak was a little unnerved by Jason now the cloak seamed to hide something he could not pick up before an anger which seeped through him. His eye were haunting and showed much pain and anguish of his obviously long life. He snapped him self out of the trance, none the less he had duties to attend to, and he thus began to measure Ashlottes limbs and parts.
 
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