|Andromeda War is a Historical Event
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Deep in Brood space Tyraz coninued to contemplate on his personal flagship. Outside a small vessel of Draconis manufacture approached the Ghost of the Warrior requesting to dock. On board the shuttle was carrying a Draconis artifact as a gift for Tyraz Breek. The shuttle itself was piloted by a Terradixin by the name of Olov Vokki
Olov - Brood fleet we are requesting permission to dock at the flagship. Do you comply, over.
Zealot Rewajisu Vasej - Please state your name and business, or face eradication.
Olov - I am Captain Olov Vokki, I have a package for the warlord uhh... Tylos?
Zealot Rewajisu Vasej - Lord Councilor Tyraz. And permission granted. However, when you dock, expect armed soldiers.
Olov - Understood sir, coming in on approach.
As the shuttle landed a squad of Niddan-Ho gathered around the ship. A gantry lowered as the captain left his ship, he was greeted by the giant Zazane - who towered over him - readying their weapons. Zealot Rewajisu entered the hanger and appraoched the intimidated Terradixian, ordering the Niddan-Ho to stand down, they remained vigilant.
Rewajisu - Stand down! These are guests...
Olov - I mean no harm, no-no. Consider the tribute inside a gift of goodwill from the Alpenix university.
Rewajisu - This had better not be a trap. Niddan-Ho are always at the ready...
Olov - *Stutters* No trap I swear, I was sent just to give the tribute. Please don't hurt me if it displeases you...
Zealot Rewajisu Vasej - ...Fine. I will be keeping an eye on you....*walks behind Olov, hand on blade* Keep moving.
Olov led the Zazane inside and down to a cargo hold. In the centre of a room was an unassuming metal crate. Olov points to the crate stating that that was the offer. Outside the ship a bulky shillouette dropped down through the landing gear and discreetly made it's way to a nearby door. After fumbling with the controls the figure - sealed inside a thin environment suit - discreetly travelled though the bowels of the ship, evading patrols and unexpectedly gaining the attention of Tyraz breek who felt the figure's presence on board.
Tyraz - Who is that? Is that the Clericarch?
The figure's discreet nature made him wonder if it was an assassin. Eager to find out he headed towards the bridge, along the way he saw the figure peering around a corner, as the figure - resembling a Draconis in shape - breathed a sigh of relief... Tyraz made his move, growling loudly to make himself known. This startled the figure who turned around to notice Tyraz.
??? - Wha...? *Looks behind himself to see Tyraz.* You.. You must be Tyraz Breek... correct?
Tyraz - Indeed I am. But that wasn't my question.
Typical of himself, Tyraz grasped the figure's throat, constricting him slightly
Volkarus - I... My name is Volkarus... sir... Believe me when I say I am not here to kill you...
Tyraz - I will believe you, seeing as you cannot! Volkarus, what are you here for?
Volkarus - I am here to offer my services... If you will let me go...
Tyraz complied, uncertain. As he did Volkarus thanked him. As He rubbed his throat Tyraz stepped closer, remaining defencive.
Tyraz - Now, who are you? You are Draconis, why do you offer your services?
Volkarus - Because we both want the same thing: power, glory, and the Empire stands in the way.
Tyraz - Hmm....You are a traitor, then.
Volkarus - So the Ultanos say, my entire line brought to the edge of extinction! *chuckles* To be truthful, the empire doesn't know I even exist...
Tyraz - So...you are a survivor?
Volkarus - A descendent of one. I curse the very name 'Ultanos' for what they are doing, for how they have made the empire weak.
Tyraz - What happened? What do you mean by descendent?
Volkarus - I am of the Khaxvis bloodline. Roughly 40,000 years ago my line were the Paragons. Unfortunately an act of betrayal led to the Ultaonos returning, inciting civil war. At the war's end, every member of house Khaxvis they could find were executed in Minos'Drakon's central plaza. The traitor is now considered one of the empire's greatest heroes!
Tyraz - Traitor rulers! That Uriel person....He will die! We do require your aid in beating those....pathetic warriors!
Vokarus - Over time my house has rebuilt in exile. We have warriors, information, and equipment, all at your disposal. I just want one thing in return.
Tyraz - What do you wish for?
Volkarus - I want the imperial throne, which is rightfully mine!
Tyraz - Imperial throne of the Draconis?
Volkarus - Indeed.
Tyraz - ...Very well. You will have your throne. However, how do I know you will not backstab us?
Volkarus - You have my word; Your kind are what I aspire the Draconis to be: Feared, mighty and powerful.
Tyraz - Indeed, I wish only one more thing from you.
Volkarus - And that is?
Tyraz - I want you to bow to me.
Volkarus - *gives a stern look at Tyraz* As you wish...
Volkarus was secretly dsigusted. The idea of his family - who were once rulers of the Draconis - bowing down to this alien warlord in submission sickened him. But he knew the value of such an alliance and complied. As he did, Tyraz' tail swayed with joy as he watched the Draconis kneel in submission.
Volkarus - You will need to do more than just kill Uriel. Kill him and another Ultanos will take his place. I don't want to repeat the mistakes my ancestors made, I want them ALL dead!
Tyraz - Then...I believe I can get the Kordalu to make a genetic weapon...
Volkarus - Interesting...
Tyraz - Indeed...The Ultanos Line will die! Such traitors...
Tyraz - This will be magnificent sport!
Volkarus - *A wicked smile spreads across Volkarus' face* I can tell I am going to like you.
Tyraz - You have not seen what I can do....I have scared even that wench, Arsac!
Volkarus - *eyes widen* An impressive feat, i did not think such a thing was possible.
Tyraz - Indeed. I forced her to watch as I slashed my sword through two of her comrades' faces....and then make one explode as I threw him against a wall.
Volkarus - That doesn't sound like something that would scare her... Rumours have it she has taken on demon cults without fear - Then again, I wasn't there.
Volkarus was right: Arsac had built her reputation on challenging chaos, demonic, psycic and elemntally empowered cultists without so much as gasping in fear. Some even wondered if she had ever felt fear (or that she once faced an event so traumatic and terrifying that she had overcome all sense of fear).
Tyraz - She has taken on demon cults, yes. But she has not taken on this....
Tyraz smiled, shadows and dark energy swirled round him as he grew into his demonic form. As he did Volkarus stepped back in fear, watching as the warlord shifted and morphed before his very eyes. As tyraz roared any lingering thoughts he had about any eventual betrayal were gone - he was not stupid enough to do such a thing to a demon. As the being towered over him he was speechless.
Volkarus - I... I... I honour you, sir.
Tyraz groweled, taking a step towards the petrified Draconis.
Tyraz - If you do not dishonour my race, I will Descend you....So you too can achieve this!
Those words sealed Volkarus' loyalty: The potential of goodhood filled his mind, evisioning the immeasurable power he would wield. As the thoughts flooded his mind a smile of glee spread across his face. He knelt on one knee and bowed his head in respect.
Volkarus - You have my word, and my respect... My Lord Breek!
Tyraz - *laughs and wings spread across* Good! Now, gather your forces! We have work to do...
Volkarus - *Bows* As you wish my lord.
Tyraz - *returns to normal and nods* I will prepare my forces...And then, you shall tell me of the...traditional Draconis strategy...
Volkarus - Of course. With my people's knowldge and familiarity witho our enemy and your people's might and reputation we shall be unstoppable!
Coming to the belief that discussions were over, Volkarus stood up and headed back to the cargobay. The thoughts of descension still fresh in his mind. Tyraz watched as he walked away, growling slightly.
Tyraz - If he backstabs me....He will face the rage of the entire Zazane race.....
Tyraz teleported to this throne room. As Volkarus returns to the hanger he notices his pilot with the Niddan-Ho. The crate is nearby. Inside was a finely-crafted energised longsword. Plated in gold the blade featured engravings of serpents that intertwined. The hilt and crossguard were plated in reflective gold and bound in the finest leather. The gift itself was truly a work of art.
Volkarus - Leave the gift for Lord Councillor Breek, Pilot, I need to report in.
Ovol - *The Terradixian pilot salutes* Understood sir.
As his shuttle returned to the Khaxvis fleet, Volkarus contemplated on what he had done. He may be the sort to have little regard for his kin's morality, but even he had his limits. The potential of siding with a descended being? Were the benefits woth the risks? His mind once again returned to Tyraz' promise. With such power the empire could rule eternally, under his leadership. he would be the epitome of superiority - a king of kings. His thoughts were broken when one of the elders requested contact. He headed into his quarters, on the screen was an ageing female.
Elder Kathelia - I hope everything went smoothly brother.
Volkarus - Indeed. The aliens are more than eager to support our cause
Elder Kathelia - Really? Interesting... What did you promise him?
Volkarus - We provide whatever we can,I have vouched for the house's complete loyalty to them.
Elder Kathelia - WHAT!? Have you lost your mind?
Volkarus - Hardly mistress. They know how to wage war, they are the pinnacle of what we could achieve.
Elder Kathelia - Pray to Drakon that they are more lenient of us once we hold the throne. Anything else?
Volkakrus - I am assuming command of the resurgence.
Elder Kathelia - On who's authority?
Volkakrus - I know the Zazane, I am familliar with their leader. it is best for the resurgence that power goes through me... Would you rather he have to go through the trouble of meeting with another of our kin?
Elder Kathelia - I will discuss this with the other elders, but you seak wisdom for your age. Fine. For now consider youself the new head.
Volkarus - Thank you mistress.
Elder Kathelia - I want to meet with this Warlord in person, before the elders. I want to know our new ally better.
Volkarus - I will inform him at once mistress. We are to now gather our forces, coordinates enclosed.
Elder Kathelia - Very well. If you mess this up brother, standing before the elders for judgement will be the least of your worries.
Volkarus nodded as he ended the conversation. Exhaling deeply he took form a bookshelf a book and read from it, falling asleep on his bed shortly afterward.
Circle of pacts
Days later the most important members of House Khaxvis gather within an auditorium aboard one of their generatison ships. At the far end of the room was a booth containing the 20 elders thad made yp the elder council. Themutterings of the spectators fell silent as Volkarus stepped in. Standing within the arena he bowed to the elders in the booth before he cleared his throat ready for his announcement.
"Members of House Khaxvis - brothers, sisters. I return with news of a potential ally: The Brood of War has agreed to aid us in our cause to reclaim the throne. I present to you a man who has planted fear into the heart of the High Inquisitor herself: Lord-Councillor Tyraz Breek!"
As he speaks, Tyraz appears beside Volkarus, with black smoke leaving his body immediately after appearing. This did not seem to impress the spectators or the elders. Tyraz looked at the crowd before and snarled before he spoke. From within the booth Elder Kathelia, a spokesperson for the elders, stands up and looks down at Tyraz.
Tyraz - So....You are House Khaxvis?
Elder Kathelia - Indeed, Lord Breek.
Tyraz - May I ask who you are, Mistress?
Elder Kathelia - I am Elder Kathelia: High mother and an elder of the house.
Tyraz - A pleasure to meet you, Mistress Kathelia. So, I heard that you require the aid of the Brood of War.
Elder Kathelia - That is correct. Believe me when I say that you were not our first choice and it was NOT out of desperation.
Tyraz - If that is so, then why have you come to us?
Elder Kathelia - Because you hold desires and ideals similar to our own. You also have the power to help us.
Tyraz - Indeed we do...And we will be happy to help take down that pathetic empire. Your....messenger, Volkarus, has told me that you shall grant me aid with your own military.
Volkarus - This is true. Our legions are at your disposal.
Elder Elosus - Volkarus, you should be careful in making such a decision.
Volkarus - Once we have the throne we will have the entire Imperial Talon Navy at our disposal... Enough firepower to crush any opposition.
Tyraz - Except my own, messenger... If you have any plans for betrayal, then I shall warn you that is not wise. Elder Selassa - Apparently my son has placed great faith in you. He rarely seems to offer such unshaking loyalties outside of his own kin.
Tyraz - Then I am honoured. I have placed my loyalty into you, House Khaxvis, and apparently you have placed loyalty into Brood...After all, an alliance is a two way thing.
Elder Kathelia - That is true. However his loyalty borders on naivete... or perhaps he sees something in you that we so far don't.
Tyraz - Indeed he does. And by your permission, I will let it be shown...
The elders were confused what Tyraz meant. The entire auditorium boke out into confused mumblings as spectators tried to work out what Tyraz meant. Eventually Selassa stands up to address Tyraz.
Elder Selessa - We do not understand.
Tyraz - You will do so soon...
As he spoke, black smoke leaked from his body, shrouding him. The voices of confusion quickly changed to apprehension. meanwhile one of the Khaxvis sitting down rested a pen-shaped object on the table before firing a dart in Tyraz' direction. To everyone's surprise the dart simply passes through the smoke, which dissapates to reveal Tyraz' descended form, sending everyone in the room into an outright state of panic, allowing the Khaxvis who fired the dart to make a discreet escape. As Tyraz emerges his new wings spread out and he lets out a demonic roar. Kathelia was outraged.
Elder Kathelia - I was right Volkarus, you have pledged yourself to a devil! If the inquisition ever discovers this we will all be condemned to the void!
Tyraz - I feel insulted! You dare call me a devil before your empire, which is at the mercy of the Brood and every other empire right now? I can help you achieve godhood!
Kathelia - And what of those who fall short? We will be condemned to the void regardless of what happens.
Tyraz - Those who fall short.....I can make them become your immortal warriors! You will eternally rule over House Khaxvis! Your army would be Descended! The Inquisition can do nothing about it!
Laros - Mistress, we have the assailant. He was never one of us!
Tyraz - Bring him here....I wish to speak with him....
Laros - a captain of the guard - has two guards drag a Khaxvis soldier to Tyraz' Feet before traring away his brestplate. As it flashes and sparks the Khaxvis' body seems to distort and shrink revealing a blue-scaled Draconis wearing ornate body armour, smaller than all the Khaxvis in the room. Laros Grasps the Inquisitor's jaw abd hoists it up, forcing the draconis to stare directly up at Tyraz, who walks over and stares directly down at him.
Tyraz - Why have you attacked me?
Inquisitor Tanus - Isn't it obvious, abomination?
Tyraz - Abomination? Such foolishness....Even when I managed to scare your beloved High Inquisitor, Arsac.
Inquisitor Tanus - She didn't know what you were back then. However I did not expect... you.
Laros - Then why are you here!?
Tanus - All of you, abominations! You were foolish to gather here and i knew just how to strike!
Tyraz - I admire that you do not fear death...
Tyraz grasps the inquisitor by the throat and hists him high above the ground, both of them exchange glares. Tyraz smiles before he materialises black claws inside the inquisitors body, who squirms in pain as his muscles waste away. As he dangles the inquisitor uses what strength remained to wrestle a football-sized canister from his backpack, activating the device before dropping it.
Tanus - I do not fear what awaits me after death, for the pain will be forgotten.
Tyraz - Then I will not kill you....
Tanus - *Pulls out the canister* Pray that Drakon forgives..you all...
Tanus drops the canister, as it falls Laros grabs it, once he does the caps on either end open up and he is engulfed by smoke fro minside. Within the cloud his throat swells, causing him to cough chronically before collapsing on the floor. The smoke is pulled towards Tyraz with a snarl as it is absorbed and destroyed within his body. Angered by such an act he remarks on the inquisitor's stupidity before plunging a large finger directly into the inquisitor's waist, pircing the armour like paper. Volkarus inspects the empty canister, realising it was a virus bomb that could have killed every Khaxvis member inside the chamber in seconds. Tyraz summons a Kordalu Zazane to operate on Laros.
Volkarus - He would have suffocated by now. Are you sure you can revive him?
Kordalu - Of course, flesh being. There is no challenge too great for a Kordalian. If the male's brain is still in a good condition, then operation shall be minimal.
Volkarus - Wait.. are you suggesting we transplant his brain?
Kordalu - Drastic action is not needed. All I need is to dispose of the useless lungs and replace them with cyber implants.
Volkarus - You are lucky we are more open to cybernetics than the pretenders. Most of our kin would have preferred regrowing the lungs with stem cells.
Kathelia - It seems we may have been wrong about you. You used your power to save us all and for that we are grateful.
"Save... your...s-s-selves... Do n-n-not turn your.... back... on... hiim...." The inquisitor mutters before Tyraz discards his corpse, returning to his original form.
Tyraz - Please, it is nothing really, Mistress Kathetlia. Your empire shows promise...I did not want its leaders wasted in our first meeting.
Elder Kathelia - Very well. It seems you were not his target anyway.
Tyraz - He thought he could kill us all, Mistress. He was wrong. He did not even claim one...
Kordalu - The flesh subject shall return to consciousness in a matter of hours.
Elder Sorus - He came close. Do you know why he called all of us abominations?
Tyraz - I have no idea. It is possible due to your...mutation. You are bigger, stronger and superior to the other Draconis. And I am not even mortal.
Volkarus - Correct, but we prefer the term 'augmentation'.
Elder Sorus - We have all accepted long ago the idea that genetic enginnering would grant us an edge. Other than that fact the Inquisition barely takes notice; Were it not for their cowardly stance on such modification the inquisitor would never be here.
Kordalu - Cybernetics is the way forward. With cybernetics, you are rendered practically immortal...
Tyraz - Indeed, but Descension is stronger!
Kordalu - The Kordalu have no time to study Essence, Lord Councilor...
Elder Sorus - Both of you are correct. But the inquisitor has a point: Even though we side with you we do not wish to become a demonic cult. Such an act would condemn us - both by the Inquisition and by Drakon himself.
Tyraz - So...You follow a religion? You need not to worship me or my deity. And the Inquisition can do nothing against an immortal army.
Elder Kathelia - We still honour the lifefather as we do our parents. Without him we are nothing.
Tyraz - Very well. You shall remain mortal. However, for those who wish for Descension...Then I suggest you come forward now...
The spectators mumble once again at such a prospect. Some of them uncertain and this disappointed Tyraz.
Tyraz - Is my promise of Descension really worth turning down? Imagine how impressed your lifefather would be if he found out his loyal followers would serve him for eternity...
Volkarus - *steps forward* I will lead by example mistress. I will bring everlasting glory to Grand House Khaxvis.
Elder Kathelia - Brother are you certain of this?
Voklarus - Drakon has wanted from the beginning for us to improve ourselves... *he swallows* this is simply the next step... The teachings are always open to interperetation.
Elder Sorus - Drakon sees us as his children, his greatest creation, not servants. He has watched us advance since our very beginnings.
Tyraz - You have decided....Keep calm....You wish not to ruin this moment.
Volkarus steps forward, Tyraz' claws glow red before Volkarus is quickly engulfed in black smoke. The room falls silent as the shadows are absorbed into Volkarus' body. Crimson markings are left on his torso, limbs and armour. Volkarus looks at himself with both horror and glee. Eventually he winces in pain as he feels the markings carve themselves onto his body.
Tyraz - The next step in your Descension requires your temporary death....
Tyraz - Do not fear this, I shall resurrect you stronger than ever....
Volkarus - Right... right...
Tyraz - Have faith in me....Or this shall not work....
Tyraz drew his firesword as he spoke and pointed it at Volkarus' chest. As it burns through Volkarus lets out a scream of agony before collapsing lifelessly onto the arena floor. As he lay Tyraz approached him and used his power to fill his wounds with shadows. Elder Selessa watched in horror, clustching her hand and resting it against her chest, watching as her dead son returned. As life returned to him, Volkarus' scales darken and the marks glow brighter than ever as he opened his eyes, looked around bewildered before looking at Tyraz, then the Elders.
Tyraz - And now....your trial is complete....
Elder Selessa - Was the process of death truly needed...
Tyraz - Indeed it was....And now, he has returned......EMPOWERED!!
Volkarus - I saw what awaited me... What awaits us all... Blackness, darkness eternal. No garden, no firests, no wisps, no rebirth... nothing.
Tyraz - Indeed. Upon Descension....You have sacrificed your own afterlife.
Elder Selessa - What have you done to my son!
Tyraz - I have made him all powerful...He is now eternal!
Volkarus - I am fine mother *examines himself*... just... fine...
Elder Selessa - I did not raise my son to forsake the lifefather, not like this!
Tyraz - Volkarus...You are the strongest Draconis here...You are eternal, you are punishment, you are victory!
Elder Kathelia - Selessa please, this is for the-
Elder Selessa - NO! *points at Tyraz* My son died the moment you plunged that accursed sword into his heart!
Tyraz - Your son is immortal! Volkarus, will you let this female embarass you in front of your kin?!
Elder Selessa - *Cries out in desperation* He is no longer my son!
Volkarus - No, such embarrassment is weakness.
Elder Sorus - Guards: restrain misttress Selessa. Let her calm down. Volkarus, give her time to rest. At least respect the bonds of family. Remember you would be nothing without her.
Tyraz - *whispers* Volkarus, look at myself. I have almost no family...And the family I did have hated me and turned on me long time ago! I would be cautious around your kin, especially as you are an immortal...They could be jealous...Look at myself and look at the empire I rule...without family to turn on me...
Volkarus - I have been taught since the day I hatched to show respect for my kin.. Parents, children, relatives. I was forever told to respect their words. But if she is willing to disown me like that...
Tyraz - You are anger, you are punishment...And you are all powerful....You could destroy everybody in this room and have enough power for more...To my eyes, you are the leader....
Elder Sorus - Volkarus: Whatever you are thinking do not let the first use this 'gift' Lord Breek has offered to harm to the one woman who raised you solid for ten years! Volkarus - Quiet old man!
Everyone in the room gasps in shock and Sorus glares at VOlkarus viciously.
Elder Sorus - What did you say!?
Tyraz - *whispers to Volkarus* Family is nothing but weakness....I have one son and I know he will kill me....And I can do nothing! And all my other family tried to kill me when I was young.....Such trust in family when they are the ones that can destroy you most....
Elder Sorus - I don't know how the Zazane respect family. But within our broods elders are respected and honoured! Voklarus: Your words bring dishonour to you and to your brood!
Elder Sorus - Family breeds strength, we respect our kin and to betray our own family is just as abominable as cold-blooded murder!
Tyraz - *whispering* The Elders do not fight for the Khaxvis...Your loyal warriors do....What do the Elders do except sit there and judge their young? And do not listen to him....They betrayed you....He is jealous of your power....
Volkarus - Lord Tyraz is right... Elder you have grown fat on the council and your end is closing! All of you can embrace the power I wield, all you need to do is pledge faith just as I have. We will be gods among men! Truly the rightful heirs of the dragon throne!
Elder Sorus - *Draws a warblade from within the booth* So be it... You have disgraced your mother Volkarus, I will not allow you to disgrace us before Drakon! Guards, get her out of here.
Tyraz - Volkarus, let this fool know your power! Draw your blade and fight him! Prove that you are no longer a child!
As guards helped Selessa out of the booth she looked back for a moment, Sorus sighed ans she turned to face forward, exhaling deeply. After she left Sorus leapt down from the booth, glarly angered by Volkarus' disgraceful behaviour.
Elder Sorus - Call me lazy would you, ungrateful whelp? I challenge you in the ring of honour.
Tyraz - Show this fool honour....Kill him with your blade!
Volkarus - As you wish...
The two Khaxvis take their positions within the arena. Sorus attacks first but Volkarus simply dodges, slashing the elder's back with both of his swords. Sorus swings his sword behind him and Volkarus rolls, parrying the strike as he gets up. In retaliation Sorus forces the blade down with all his strength however Volkarus - empowered by his new gift - easily overpowers him staggering Sorus before charging. Sorus was impressed, commenting that he was wise to accept descension but retaliating by remaking he has far more experience than Voklarus; Who simply said age maent nothing with Tyraz agreeing. Volkarus launchd himself, striking Sorus with a swift flurry and nearly knocking the elder off-balance. Using the flat of his sword Sorus swings his blade hoping to trip Volkarus up. Tyraz spoke telepathically for him to take the blow Volkarus smiles, allowing Sorus to hit him. He falls over, as Sorus walks over to him the elder seems to smile. While the elder gloated Tyraz whispered for Volkarus to finish him. Unaware of his ability He simply muttered that doing such would be dishonourable, preffering to end it an an honourary fashion. As Sorus prepared to blunge his warsword into the fallen Khaxvis he was impaled in the leg. Volkarus stood up, grasping Sorus' throat before simply saying one thing
Volkarus - What happened to that survival instinct., old man? If you ever see Drakon, tell him the true heirs are returning.
Voklarus finished the elder off by plunging his fist into the Elder's chest, crushing the old man's heart. Sorus collapsed while Tyraz simmply sat and smiled. As Sorus collapsed onto the floor Volkarus reveled in what he had done and Tyraz licked his fangs as he approached the scene.
Tyraz - Victory is yours...as so is this House.
Volkarus - He had little chance against me. I felt he deserved the satisfaction of honoured combat before his just reward. Tyraz - You did well, my apprentice. The rewards of a million battles are ahead of you...
Volkarus - If any of you wish to revel in the power Lord Tyraz grants step forward now. The age of the true paragons of Alcanti will begin soon!
The entire auditorium cheered in glee for the specatacle, chanting 'Hail Khaxvis, hail Volkaron, death to the pretenders!' Tyraz smiled as so many submitted themselves for Descension.
Glory and Deception
It had been two weeks since the gathering, hundreds of Draconis loyal to the house had been descended and both the Brood and the Resugence had an army of immortal warriors at their command. Tyraz found himself heading towards Volkarus' personal office on the uppermost decks of the generation ship Emberos. Standing outside were two normal guards. As Tyraz approached the guarsd nodded to him.
Guard - Master Volkarus is expecting you Lord Breek.
Tyraz - Thank you, sir. Good luck on surviving Descension.
Tyraz walked inside leaving the guard with a puzzled look on his face. Inside Volkarus was staring out of the window at the amassing fleet, since the last gathering a series of spikes had emerged from his body. He looked at Tyraz with a knowing smile, at the same time he was overcome with concern.
Tyraz - Volkarus, you wanted to discuss with me. What do you wish?
Volkarus - The day of glory fast approaches, however we must be prepared. The resurgence is taking a great risk mobilising what we have to this location.
Tyraz - Indeed. The Brood of War will be at your side. You have no need of worry.
Volkarus - Every day I worry that the Talons merge from nowhere and blast us to ash. You may have granted several of my kin immortality but the pretenders' navy still far outnumbers what my kin have. Or worse we face exposure from the inquisition.
Tyraz - Tell me, what threat do the Inquisition pose to you?
Volkarus - If we are exposed as 'demons' the senate would never accept us. Other than their renforcement on the empire's laws on genetics we had little problem with them... In fact we would sometimes respect them.
Tyraz - Why do you wish acceptance when you can just destroy the senate yourself?
Volkarus - You have a point. But if the new senate links the death of the old senate to us what then? A new house war begins and my kind slip into another age of self-destruction.
Tyraz - Hmm, so true...Luckily, the Kordalu Zazane have come further in their research of a plague that effects bloodlines. However, there are a few....problems.
Volkarus - Problems?
Tyraz - Indeed. The plague works....But it will only erase the future generations, not the carrier or past generations that are still alive. We want a plague that will wipe out all biological evidence.
Volkarus - So it would only make them sterile? It would take centuries for them to die of age.
Tyraz - Indeed it would. We need more Draconis corpses to work on, as well. The Kordalu have only completed a quartre of their research into the plague.
Volkarus - This talk of plagues is not why I was expecting you. We have a difficult campaign ahead of us so I took the liberty of organising another gathering, everyone should be on their way to the chamber now... almost everyone...
Volkarus bowed his head, once again looking out of the window for something still troubled him deeply.
Tyraz - You wish for me to Descend more of your people?
Volkarus - Not for the moment. Your council is free to join the spectacle since this campaign needs to be a combined effort.
Tyraz - My council? You will wish for Lady Councilor Astral Highland of the Kordalu. She has an understanding of diplomatics.
Volkarus - If you insist. The resurgence has strategic information the brood will require.;The empire has made every effort over it's 200-millenia year history to protect the core worlds. I make no understatement: Reaching the imperial palace, let alone the throne, will be a dangerous undertaking.
Tyraz - My forces are ready for it. This will be the first time that the empire encounters a full-force Brood assault, which we have practiced ever since the start of our proud civilization.
Volkarus heads for the door and indicates for Tyraz to follow as they headed towards the auditorium.
Volkarus - Contact your council. if it is easier to speak via holograms so be it, there's just one last thing.
Tyraz - And what is this, Volkarus?
Volkarus - Elder Selessa is the only elder to have not descended, In fact she hasn't left her chambers since the last gathering... I still care for her my lord.
Tyraz - Elder Selessa? Remind me who she is again.
Volkarus - She was the woman who bellowed at you, who claimed you killed me. She doesn't even want to hear me and the others cannot convince her otherwise.
Tyraz - Oh....her. What do you want me to do about it?
Voklarus - I don't know... You know more of the nature descension than any of us. Then again she considers you responsible for what happened. You said yourself your family shunned you, tried to kill you. You know what it is like at the other end... What am i saying... such a suggestion is beneath someone of your power and majesty.
Tyraz - Volkarus, she does not understand that Descension makes you all powerful! It makes you fierce and ever stronger! If she cannot see this, then it is her loss! If she is not willing to give up afterlife for a future where she will not die, then I cannot help you or her... No suggestion is beneath me. I care for my people. But she is of your people.
Volkarus - She is also my mother. The ties of family and position my kin have are not as ingrained as they are in someone from outside such as you.
Tyraz - Volkarus, are you saying you want me to teach the concept of Descension....to your mother?
Volkarus - No. Now I must make sure everything is ready, you may contact the council of the brood if you so wish.
As Volkarus walks off in the direction of the auditorium Tyraz growled. Technically what Volkarus had asked him to do, depite denial, was to make an old woman understand the concept of descension. He turns to two guards standing nearby, beckoning the two of them to come forward. They approached out of obligation, saluting by pounding their fists on their left pecs. He approaches the two of them closely
Tyraz - You two are Descended yes?
Guard 2 - Indeed sir. We are Master Volkarus' honour guard.
Tyraz - You do know that your level of Descension is the same as his own?
The guards look at each other with uncertainty before turning back to Tyraz.
Guard 1 - We were not aware sir.
Guard 2 - We were unaware there are varying levels, sir.
Tyraz - Indeed, there are levels. Volkarus was keeping this from you...so you wouldn't turn on him. I am stronger than Volkarus, because I Descended him. Do not tell him I have told you this, however.
Guard 1 - We would never consider turning on him my lord. We have sworn to protect him at any cost.
Tyraz - Why do you protect him? The two of you combined are more powerful than he is. Does you culture not measure worthiness of rank by strength?
Guard 2 - No my lord; We both come from lines devoted to protecting the master of the house.
Guard 1 - Such methods of rank are crude.
Tyraz - I have you know that my culture determines leader by strength. And look where we are at the moment.
The guards once again look at each other, trying oe make sense of Tyraz' words.
Guard 1 - Master Volkarus has achieved his position through merit not by how strong he is.
Tyraz - Then he is not very strong. He has only become strong due to my intervention. And if your leader is not strong, how do you ever hope to survive?
Guard 1 - House Khaxvis has been led by such leaders before. We have always survived.
Guard 2 - Always triumphed.
Tyraz - If that is so, how come your leader's throne is being sat on by an Ultanos?
Guard 1 - ...We lack the raw power, but we will triumph from the gift you have bestowed upon us!
Tyraz - You have the attitude of a true leader! But Volkarus....He will do nothing but lead you into an age of cowardice. He fears the Inquisition and the senate. He can destroy both with this gift, but he refuses to! He is too much of a coward! He lives in fear of them....That is not the attitude of a leader....
Guard 2 - We would never turn on Master Volkarus and violate our oath.
Guard 1 - By doing so we would instantly become houseless. A fate worse than death...
Their discussion was interrupted when an aide of Volkarus walks down to announce to Tyraz that everything was ready in the auditorium. Tyraz turned to aknowledge the woman, who replied that he would attend shortly. As she headed back Tyraz continued to convince the Honour Guard
Tyraz - It would not matter. You can experience no death while Descended, unless by my hands or somebody stronger. Also, with such strength you could form your own house...
Guard 1 - *nods slowly* Unconventional but... perhaps.
Gaurd 2 - We could forge our own immortal empire...
Guard 1 - Don't be daft, you're not the kind for such patience.
Tyraz - Gentlemen, you both have the attitude to be leaders....Overthrow Volkarus. He will do no good for the Khaxvis....
- The guards are left looking at each other with concern* Guard 1 - Should we really put desire over duty?
Tyraz - Trust me....Volkarus will do no good for the kin. He may seem strong, but he is weak. The two of you could overthrow him....And you could both rule an immortal empire that will purge all xenos and heretics within this galaxy.....
Gaurd 2 - My lord...
The guard hilts his head in the direction of the auditorium, indicating that Tyraz was needed elsewhere. Tyraz nodded back. Within the centre auditorium was a hologrpahic projector showing an image of a ring-shaped construction. This construction surrounded what looked like an image of a black hole, as Tyraz entered Volkarus was informing the attendees of the structure's nature and purpose.
Vokarus - As my kin know this device is perhaps one of the most important constructions in imperial history; Functioning as wormholes to other secotrs and as a power source. Even in the border-sectors the Talon Navy makes every precaution it can to protect them and to control traffic.
Tyraz - If we destroy them, we cut off the Talon Navy. If we gather them all together then ambush them, it will serve a great blow to the empire.
Volkarus - These 'Senvinus Reactors' are completely autonomous. Any ship wishing to travel through must contact gateway command nearby or they risk crushing themselves within the singularity. So far we can sneak ships through but an entire armada is an entirely different-
Tyraz - If we destroy these reactors, the Talon Navy has nowhere to go. Then we launch an assault on the gathered Talons, completely destroying them.
Volkarus - ...The reactors, my lord, are the primary form of intersector travel, we need them as much as the Imperial Talon Navy does.
Elder Kathelia - If they were designed to prevent being destroyed by a black hole what chance do our, even your, guns have?
Tyraz - The Brood offers similiar technology. How do you think that we came from Borealis to Andromeda within such short time? We have Shidium! Much stronger than what the empire and Khaxvis has to offer!
Elder Kathelia - Destroying the reactors is out of the question! We should be fortunate that maps of the gateway network are commonly available. Perhaps use one of them as an anchor point...
Tyraz - Then let it get discovered and the entire Talon Navy rushes through?
Volkarus - It would be temporary obviously. We could still take control of the gateways however that brings up another tactical problem.
Tyraz - And what is that?
Vokarus switches the display to show an imperial battlestation. A wide disk in the centre with two large spires emerging from the poles.
Volkarus - These are battlestations. Orbital fortresses that can outmatch entire fleets in terms of firepower.
Tyraz - They have yet to encounter Brood fleets.
Volkarus - The empire will always have one or more of these orbiting each planet of the closest few star systems, the so-called 'gateway systems'. Along with one over each Senvinus Reactor.
Elder kathelia - Volakrus was never specific about which fleets, the disk alone is several kilometres in diameter. redundant multiphasic shielding, countless turbolaser, gauss and missile batteries, regenerative armour, reinforced superstructure. The list of defences goes on.
Tyraz - Then we must destroy them with Kaann, the most infamous ships within the Fleet of Ruin, capable of destroying entire planets.
Vokarus - And then there are the fleets the ITN positions by each one. Alcanti itself has three of these stations in orbit and a fourth in the orbit of it's moon.
Tyraz - This is where Descension comes in. *smiles* I teleport your army and myself to the nearest one, capture it, and then we have control of the area.
Volkarus - Yes... The garrisons will be powerless! We can turn their own guns against them.
Elder Kathelia - Wouldn't teleportation be negated by the shielding?
Tyraz - Shielding against Descension? Please, you underestimate the powers that I have given you!
Elder Katheia - I see... The council thought you were referring to using teleporters. *the elders nod* This is a suitable plan.
Tyraz - Indeed. This campaign will be easy.
Volkarus - We have two more things to consider: The Imperial Palace itself and the Blood Dragons. For milennia the Dragons have been a thorn in our side and we have been fighting a secret war with them for many generations since the Second House War.
Tyraz - The Blood Dragons? Bah, I would like to see them fight against an army of immortals.
Volkarus - True, but they could still pose an irritation. Dragons fight in pairs to constantly flank the enemy.
Tyraz - No use in flanking if you cannot kill the one you are attacking.
Volkarus - We will have other ground troops during the assault on the palace in order to draw fire, they could easily be cut down if unprepared.
Elder Kathelia - Arsac is always looking for new ways to gain an advantage against her enemies. We must be prepared if they ever do find a counter to our abilities.
Tyraz - There is one counter: Ascension. Luckily, only a few select people possess it, and Arsac is not one of them.
Elder Kathelia - The empire still has the Divinarium to call as an ally. Rumours have leaked of what happened on Crepusculum...
Elder Olorus - And there are stories the Inquisition holds thousands, if not millions, of potential psycics. Hidden away in some unknown corner of space.
Tyraz - You do not know that the Brood are also allied with the Divinarium. We have them on call as well.
Elder Olorus - It seems that the Clericarch will have to choose who to side with.
Tyraz - Either that or she will choose neither and stay out of our petty conflict... Or at least to her, it is petty
Volkarus - The empire is bound to call for aid the moment we are detected within imperial space. If you can influence the Clericarch to not side with Uriel and his ilk we stand a better chance.
Tyraz - Indeed. But the Clericarch and I....Well, it is a personal matter.
Volkarus - *Smiles* Uriel is bound to cower in the depths of his palace the moment we arrive. he may be a proud soldier but that is where he would make his last stand.
Tyraz - You underestimate your enemy. That is the one flaw Zazane try not to make. You think he will cower before an immortal army? I have seen lower beings stand against them.
Volkarus - Uriel is intelligent if anything. If battle can be avoided he will take that path there is one other place he may go *A partial floor plan of the imperial palace is displayed on screen* He is... productive to say the least. He may first head t othe palace's hatchery to protect his darling wife.
Tyraz - You are prepared to slaughter his wife as well as Uriel?
Volkarus - All of them must die, if we leave even one alive they will eventually return as we did.
Tyraz - Hmmm....Excuse me a minute, I must get some fresh air...
Tyraz began to feel uncomfortable with this new alliance. Volkarus' obsession with house Ultoans' complete eradication - the idea he would happily kill someone's wife, an innocent woman made Tyraz uncomfortable - Volkarus decided to reconcile things with Tyraz, telling the council he would be back momentarily he followed Tyraz who stood in the corridor.
Volkarus - I take it killing his spouse unsettles you.
Tyraz - I take the killing of any unarmed or innocent being or civilian as unsettling.
Volkarus - The Ultanos did the same to my kin at the war's end, many were wxecuted in the central plaza. House Khaxvis has grown to be without mercy - Ultanos did not show us any so why sould we? She is Ultanos, that makes her the emeny!
Tyraz - I am not one to kill children or civilians! I will kill any soldier or warrior without mercy, but slaughtering innocents?! You can do that yourself!
Volkarus - She would not be completely defenceless. All Draconis spend a decade in military service upon reaching adulthood and she served her time long ago.
Tyraz - Are you trying to convince me to kill her? Is it too hard for you to that yourself?
Volkarus - Of course not, I'm certain you would understand better if you had lived through our history, If you understood what we had to do to survive!
Tyraz - You dare speak to me like us Zazane have had an easy history? I assure you, Volkarus, we have not.
Volkarus - Were the Zazane ever reduced to a mere 28 offspring? Did you ever have to not just live under the shadow of your conquerors but hide from them constsntly. Always vigilant for the next ambush or raid? We had to do everything we could to survive, that is why we hire so many mercenaries. I have so many underworld connections I could have built a shadow empire! That is why we are so liberal with genetics and cybernetics. We. Had. To. Survive!
Such a lecture was the last straw for the Zazane. Without warning he outstretched his arms towards Volkarus' throat and wrestle a creature three times his size to the ground. Pinning the Draconis down he snarled and was clearly angered by Volkarus' comments and attitude.
Tyraz - You have to survive? Well, upsetting a Zazane warlord is not smart! Zazane have evolved to be the perfect war machines! There has never been peace in Zazane history! Always war!
Tyraz - And if you think your wars were the greatest ever known, wrong! Every century, millions of Zazane died in our history! We had even had to go through abusing our females to make them breed faster!
Volkarus - Not once have my kin rested in our quest Not once have we decided to keep quiet. We offered no mercy! We are very much alike my lord... Why do you think i sided with you?
These words convinced Tyraz to back down. Climbing off from Volkarus he growled, his tail swaying from side-to-side.
Tyraz - The Brood will help you capture the empire battlestations. But that is it.
Volkarus - Think deeply my lord. Not even our bodies differ for we are both perfection! But as you wish my lord... Tyraz - We may help you with ground conflict, but my Zazane will have no part in killing innocents.
Volkarus - Very well, and for the record: Our battles with the Blood Dragons are nothing compared to what you have stated.
Tyraz - The Gruggysul and Ungruggysul would've completely destroyed the Draconis race if they had managed to follow Zazane into this Universe.....They were our arch enemies. They were the ones who made us flee that Universe and reduced our numbers.
Volkarus - We will handle storming the palace. Other than that I don't think there is anything major the Brood needs to know about. Unless you can think of anything?
Tyraz - Nothing of the current moment...Just be careful of what you say, otherwise your tongue will be my next trophy!
Volkarus - *Grunts with amusement* Noted. I must speak with Elder Selessa. The sooner I can convince her otherwise the better.
Tyraz - Hmph. Do what you wish.
As Volkarus headed for Selessa's chambers Tyraz returned to speaking with the two members of Volkarus' Honour Guard. He approaches them and whispers.
Tyraz - The sooner you attempt to overthrow Volkarus, the better.
Guard 1 - But my lord... our oath...
Tyraz - Shyrak to your oath! Volkarus is a dishonourable coward!
Guard 2 -
Do you have proof? Tyraz - He claims himself honourable, yet is willing, even EAGER, to slaughter innocents! And he is a coward, trying to make me kill the wife of Uriel....He can do this himself!
Guard 2 - Killing Alensia? *both shrug* the only good Ultanos is a dead one.
Their conversation is interrupted when Volkarus telepathically infored both the Honour Guard and Tyraz that he had found an intruder within Selessa's chambers. Tyraz teleported directly into the room followed shortly by the Honour Guard. Against the wall was a mortal Khaxvis almost paralysed fear and hyperventilating, still overcome by the power Volkarus forced upon him. Elder Selessa stood in the corner in horror, watching her son effortlessly terrify the Draconis.
Volkarus - I found this turncoat talking to the Elder!
Tyraz - You go deal with the people in the Auditorium, I'll deal with this turncoat!
Volkarus - Understood, he's yours...
Turncoat - Please... I was simply trying to spare the elder form damnation...
Tyraz waited until Volkarus and his Honour Guards teleported from the room before he approches the turncoat, Releasing him from the wall.
Tyraz - Being, why have you betrayed the Khaxvis?
Turnocat - Some imperial agent offered me asylum If I did something for him, when I found the elder crying in her room i had an obligation to help her...
Selessa - Just... leave devil. He meant no harm!
Tyraz - What did he want you to do?
Turncoat - Uhh, just to look around... Tyraz - I am not going to kill you, and I am certainly not going to reveal anything to that coward, Volkarus.
Turncoat - Wh-what? What are you going to do?
Tyraz - Nothing if you tell me the truth!
Turncoat - If that agent finds out... he might leave me here.
Selessa - Perhaps I was wrong, perhaps there is some soul within you...
Tyraz - *helps the turncoat up* Do you have family?
Turncoat - Only those within the house.
Tyraz - Give me a list of Khaxvis that are closest to you.
After standing up the turncoat walks over to Selessa's desk, with her nod of approval he writes a hasty list of names of his closest relatives. One of them however he noted as being Descended.
Turncoat - What are you going to do?
Tyraz - I am going to convince them to come join you.
Selessa - Why are you doing this?
Tyraz - Because....My reasons are personal.
Turncoat - Well... That agent agreed that if I provide him with intel about Khaxvis activities he would grant me asylum. When I found the elder I tried convincing her to seek asylum as well.
Tyraz - You should go with him, Mistress Selessa.
Selessa - Thank you Lord Breek. Perhaps you're not as cold as I first thought. However I cannot forgive you for what you did to Volkarus.
Tyraz - Indeed...I apologize for Volkarus...It was a mistake what I did to him. I will find a way to stop him from doing something dishonourable and....agh, stupid.
Selessa - He deserves punishment for his selfish actions.
Tyraz - Indeed...Do not worry, I will make sure his punishment is swift and painless....
Turncoat - Those protrusions... would he be in pain?
Tyraz - Those that lie on his shoulders and other parts of his body? No, they empower him by causing pain to him. Eternal pain can really empower a being....
Selessa - The inquisition's motives have suddenly become a lot clearer... To endure such suffering must drive someone mad...
Tyraz - Indeed....Even I went through a phase of insanity once....I have made a big mistake Descending your son, and I am sorry...
Turncoat - A pardon may be possible but i don't think i've heard of the inquisition giving them out to somoene of.. your predicament.. Thank you again sir.
The turncoat guides Selessa from her room and they head towards the shuttle bay. Tyraz's tail sways as he realises the potential of redeeming himself of what he had one. As he headed back in Volkarus' direction one of the Honour Guard, positioned down the hall telepathically informed Volkarus of what he could see of Tyraz' actions. Upon hearing the news he was not pleased and prepared himself for controntation.
The Demonic Horde
Tyraz was furious. As he walked past a guard to Volkarus' office he, out of rage cast the guard down. As he walked in he suddenly felt rooted in place. As he looked down he saw his feet bated in chaotic energy, Volkarus stood dissapointed at Tyraz.
Volkarus - My throat could do without the touch of your bony fingers for a while my lord.
Tyraz - Volkarus, was that an insult? If so, I advise you to rethink your words.
Volkarus - Not an insult my lord. You do seem to enjoy throttling everyone you meet. Even creatures my size...
Tyraz - I have throttled people who tower even over you.
Volkarus - That wasn't the point i was trying to make, but I was not expecting you because I wanted to enlighten you to your pleasures. Do you think i am blind on this ship?
Tyraz - *growls and tail swishes side to side* You are blind to honour and bravery.
Volakrus - First: At no point did I ask you personally to kill Alensia and Second: I wouldn't call her innocent.
Tyraz - She is no commander nor leader! That is Uriel! Killing her would be an act of dishonour!
Volkarus - Every little houseless scum she lays could grow to become another annoyance to us! Her task is to feed the house's numbers and I wouldn't consider her 'innocent' for that.
Tyraz - Houseless scum?! You plan on killing her children?! That is an even bigger taboo!
Volkarus - I am not a complete monster. I draw the line at killing children personally, in fact... they could become a valuable asset *a devilish smile creeps across his face*
Tyraz - The Zazane may use child warriors.....But what do you plan?
Volkarus - For the first decade of their lives Draconis hatchlings are very impressionable. They are fast learners and what they learn in that first decade becomes deeply rooted, this has been exploited by both the Blood Dragons and the Inquisition since the imperium's foundation. Did you know that no Blood Dragons have ever known their birth parents? They are sent off to Alcanti before they even hatch.
Tyraz - What are you planning, coward? You want to absorb children who aren't yours into your own kin just to make them soldiers?
Volkarus - We can use them as insurgents, any Ultanos survivors who find them will think that they have found lost young and will readily accept them back. Unaware that they have been conditioned to kill the ultanos when the oppertunity arises!
Tyraz - That is psychological warfare!
Volkarus - Do you disapprove? Ultanos had every Khaxvis they could find executed in Minos'Drakon's central plaza: Men. Women. Children. The presecution continued for fifty years, the paragon's walkway was almost red with spilled blood!
Tyraz - For what reason did they commit such a bloody act, Volkarus? What did your bloodline do to provoke them?
Volkarus - they branded us as usurpers. They thought we were unfit for the throne despite the fact the empire prospered under our reign! Our position was certified by the senate itself.
Tyraz - Obviously it did not prosper if you were overthrown! Weakling!
Volkarus grew evermore frustrated. it seemed that every attempt he made to redeem hiscause Tyraz semmed to willingly find a counter. when finally he snapped- Tyraz had to know the truth.
Volkarus - My predecessors saw fit to keep the Ultanos as pets, kept secret from the rest of the galaxy. That was a mistake, one i do not want repeating. Understood!?
Volkarus - I am not like my ancestors, they were content with what Drakon had given them, refusing cybernetics. They. Were. Weak.
Tyraz - *growls and lets out a roar* You dare impose authority over me?! You are no better! You wish for the slaughter of children and innocents! I have not seen modern Ultanos do this!
Volkarus - *snarls* The Ultanos are soft. Content to let others attack them first, They do not revel in the art of war and I only seek the death of Ultanos, if it was any other house things would be different.
Tyraz - They have changed since the days your coward-ancestors were overthrown! Destroying them now would make you nothing but a....I cannot even describe it! I think the word is.....dossbakk! (douchebag)
Volkarus - Fine, I won't touch any of the children, but what if the broodmother draws a blade to me. What then?
Tyraz - Then I will take away your Descension powers and let her kill you! You go nowhere near her!
Volakrus - *snarls* Then you had better pray to whatever gods you have that this genetic weapon of yours works... I suggest you draw back this low opinion you have of my kind.
Tyraz - *snarls louder and wings spread* Or what, you Shyrak devouring bottomfeeder?! I will be forever stronger than you! You dare not threaten me!
Overcoming his bonds Tyraz launches himself at Volkarus, grasping his neck and pinning the Draconis to the floor. Tyraz gripped tightly, so close Volkarus could hear Tyraz breathing.
Volkarus - The latter was only a suggestion... my lord!
Tyraz - You dare not suggest me anything, especially of your pathetic bloodline! *nears Volkarus's face with his own, near enough that Volkarus can hear and feel Tyraz breath* I for one wish those Blood Dragons would just destroy you all...slowly and painfully...
As they struggle Volkarus summons his Honour Guard. Tyraz quickly dispatched them by impaling them with his claws and tearing them open. Volkarus simply watched with rage as his 'master' tore apart his guards.
Volkarus - Never, EVER assume either my kin or the imperium have not advanced since we left the homeworld. We were conquering worlds and building distant cities before your kind ever arrived in this universe!
Tyraz - And MY kind were conquering OUR Universe before this Universe even existed! And even now we are stronger than you! We travelled from one Universe TO ANOTHER! THIS IS HOW FAR WE HAVE COME!!!
Tyraz lifted Volkarus up before pinning him against a wall, it was klear VOlkarus was fighting alosing battle.
Volkarus -...You might be impervious to whatever they throw at you but many of your kind are still mortal, still at risk of death. Many have underestimated the imperium and just as many spend eternity in the bonds of slavery.
Tyraz - You have to learn about Zazane biology, fool! Mature Zazane can kill themselves thanks to an organ next to their heart! It bursts and they die! To avoid slavery and capture! And my race takes pride in dying! We are not cowards like yourself!
Tyraz snarled before rushing the Zazane. As he fails to punch the Zazane in the chin Tyraz grabs one set of horns, much to Volkarus' anoyance and begins tearing them from his skull, resisting by swinging Tyraz to slam him against a wall. Eventually breaking the horns both of them roar in victory and rage repsectively. Volkarus retaliates by reaching to grasp Tyraz' throat only to have his own hand impaled by one of his own horns, Tyraz then impales the other horn in the shoulder and kicking him down.
Volkarus - Kill me and the possibility of aquiring whatever secrets those artifacts hold will be forever lost to you! With my help the Imperial Talon Navy itself will fight for you. Millions of warships, quadrillions of soldiers.. all would be by your side.
Tyraz - I need no use of you....
Volkarus - A single firelance capital has the power to blast a lpanet to ash! How could you deny such power?
Tyraz - ......I have no use of superweapons.
Volakrus - You sided with me because you wanted those artifacts. Uriel would never tell you where they are, i would! We could carve an eternal empire from this galaxy. Uriel or his ilk would never consider something like that.
Volkarus uses the lull in the fighting to pry the impaled horns from his body before heading to his desk.
Volkarus - So is this it? Do you intend to kill me?
Tyraz - ....No. Not yet. The time will come, however....
Volkarus - My lord, have you ever seen what the imperium's weapons can do yourself?
Tyraz - Did you know that Brood are currently more powerful? What need do I have of them?
Volakrus - Know your enemy my lord, know your enemy.
Tyraz - I know my enemy, and it is you, who is also my mistake.
Volkarus - Until the day Arsac grants you a pardon the inquisition will forever hunt you and your kind... No matter what Uriel says.
Tyraz - You think I am scared of the petty Inquisition?
Volkarus - What of your kind my lord? A single inquisitor is far more dangerous and far harder to kill than any Blood Dragon. They see the Brood as a blood cult, with you at it's head. If they think that killing the cultists weakens the master, that is what they will do.
Tyraz - Then they are wrong. They have not seen the true power of an Ayrai'Shikua Firesword, more powerful than any battlestation.... *He draws his Firesword, which blazes a black fire*
Volkarus - But... Have you ever seen the effects of a fusion rifle my lord?
Tyraz - A fusion rifle can do nothing against a Xhodocto weapon! Of course, it is Pre-Revelation....But still more powerful than any gun, battlestation, or ship. It cannot be destroyed...
Volkarus - Then at least let me demonstrate, if not for you then in regards to your brood; They are still vunerable to it.
Tyraz - So long as they are mortal....They are lucky. I am not so...
Volkarus - Wherever you go, the draconis wield such weapons. The technology is ancient but they still use it as a staple. Marines, Dragons, Inquisition... They all have access to such weapons.
Tyraz - And you think I fear any of them? You think Zazane fear any of them? You think the animalistic Cyrod are afraid? The Hetii Swarm? No. None of them fear them.
Volkarus - It was no mistake to descend me my lord. Once the Ultanos are out of the way I will see to being more 'civil'. my kind are used to such underhanded methods of war because it is effective. Your brood need to learn to be more careful of dying. Charging into batte recklessly only guarentees your death, which can lead to defeat.
Tyraz - Volkarus...We have not been defeated. Not once.....
Volarus - As I recall you had to withdraw from Solvani III. That sounds like a defeat to me.
Tyraz - We withdrew because we discussed a truce....
Volkarus pulls out a fusion pistol from his desk, along with a rather firm-looking fruit and a ceramic armour plate. Placing them on a pedestal he aims his pistol, looking at Tyraz momenterily. Tyraz was unimpressed as though Volkarus was trying to get his attention. Before firing volkarus commented on the plate's properties. As he fired a white pulse flies from the pistol, buring a hole through the plate and hitting the fruit. Both the fruit and the hole's rim dissolve into a gel in less than a second. Tyraz then pulls out a shidium pistol and fires through the office door, leaving a white-hot hole and hitting a passerby. The victim screams in pain before dying and collapsing in seconds. Volkarus looks on, both surprised and impressed. After Tyraz mentioned Shidium's pwer Volkarus called for someone to be brought up, moment later Tyraz realised it was the turncoat he had let go earlier. Tyraz was furious at Volkarus' defiance.
Turncoat - I'm sorry sir, they overpowered me... The Elder is safe...
Tyraz - I let him go, Volkarus...And I have command over you!
Volkarus - He is still a traitor and I never intended to have him leave. This is still my ship my lord!
Tyraz - You handed your forces over to me when you begged alliegance to me! I am not surprised he betrays you!
Guard - We managed to catch the worm in the shuttlebay, the imperium knows about our plans.
Volakrus - You planned this from the start didn't you?
Tyraz - I only planned this because I knew I made a mistake Descending you....
Volkarus - You have not been fighting our war my lord, you don't know what we have been through to come this far, the sacrifices we made.
Tyraz - Why should I care? You are all the same race
Tyraz - The Zazane made peace between our different races long ago... It is not my place to fight in your petty civil war.
Volkarus - I still promise my support of you when I take the throne. I still seek another golden age and with your help that is only days away!
Volkarus - Do you still support what I am trying to build?
Volkarus offers Tyraz the fusion pistol, hinting that to prove he was still interested Tyraz had to shoot the turncoat. Tyraz simply growls, batting away the pistol.
Tyraz - Your goal is that of jealousy, not of revenge! And I do not support a jealous cause...
Volkarus - You are turning down a powerful ally, why do you think the imperium lasted as long as it has?
Tyraz - Why do you think the Zazane have lasted longer?
Volkarus - Your old empire died long ago with your last universe and even today what you have built here is a fraction of what could have been. Helping me secure the imperium can provide countless benefits.
Tyraz - *slowly turns to Volkarus* I am done here, Volkarus. I disown you as my servant and as an ally.
Volkarus - You have been nothing but an irritance, you are soft. What ahppened to that Zazane warrior heart i have heard so much about? You call me weak but you turn down the chance to claim over a million systems and quadrillions of soldiers in a single blow!
Tyraz - I have learned to trust certain people and learn from mistakes. I am currently learning from you, who is nothing more than a mistake, and always will be.
Volkarus - If that is what you desire... You have not lived our pain Tyraz, were you in my situation wouldn't you do anything should your brother take your throne... perhaps your father?
'Father', the very mention of that one word and Tyraz froze. He clenched his fists in an undescribable rage before charging in Volkarus' direction. As he charged Volkarus summoned several of his honour guard and porjected a barrier to shield himself. In a beserker fury Tyraz forced his way through the army, tearing into them. Those that were not killed teleported to defend themselves. Tyraz burst effortlessly through Volkarus' barrier.
Tyraz - Dare to intimidate or anger me again! Go on! I dare you!
Volkarus - This rage, that is what I live with every. single. day! Long before we even met. Every day I just want that whelp to bleed and die, we know the feeling don't we? Uriel might not have been related to me, but my anger for him is just as great. My house's blood is on his hands, on every generation since the executions and i want him to pay for it!
Tyraz - We? WE?! You dare compare yourself to me?! *smacks Volkarus against the ground, still holding his throat* I have had enough of this "we" business!! I am NOTHING like YOU! NOTHING!!! My WHOLE bloodline were MURDEROUS BASTARDS!! And NOTHING has CHANGED!!
Tyraz throttles Volkarus before throwing him out into the corridor, before he hit the wall he teleported, hitting the rear wall in a black mist.
Volkarus - Rage, fury, it doesn't end does it? I WILL SEE THE IMPERIUM STRONG AGAIN! Both of us want to change, You don't want to be like your predecessors and I don't want ot be like my ancestors.
Tyraz - GO ON AHEAD!! I WILL NOT HELP YOU!!
Volkarus - *Snarls loudly* Face facts Tyraz! We are alike, both of us were born to suffering! If you will not help me then at the very least do not let us become enemies!
The turncoat tries to struggle out of the honour guard's grip, although easily overpowered. Out of compassion Tyraz swings his sword and decapitates the guard holding him. As he regains his strength Volkarus, now furious draws his pistol and fires at the turncoat, only to have it caught and fizzle in Tyraz' hand
Volkarus - You would protect this whelp? Look at him, he is weak!
Tyraz - I was wrong in Descending you, Volkarus....
Tyraz leaps at him, firesword drawn, Volkarus snarls before teleporting - knowing full-well the sword would be his bane. Tyraz turns to the turncoat as he lands, offering him safety. Both of them teleported to the Ghost of the Warrior.
Turncoat - I don't know what to say Lord Breek but.. thank you. I have abandoned house Khaxvis and the inquisition would hunt me down as an abomination... I'm not sure if I have anywhere to go...
Tyraz - Do not worry about the Inquisition. I will convince Uriel to accept you.
Turncoat - The inquisition listens to either Arsac or the cult. Confiding in the paragon might not work...
Tyraz - Then I will house you within the Brood until further notice.
Turncoat - I used to know of Volkarus before, with this power you cave him I-I-I don't know what he is capable of...
Tyraz - A lot of things that will prove no good to anybody....
Turncoat - He never was the merciful type, few of us were. In fact I remember seeing on occasion he would execute mercenary leaders who failed him.
Tyraz - I will end his wretched life....He was my mistake, I will get rid of it...
Turncoat - He was always a good hider. Why did you agree to do it anyway?
Tyraz - I do not know anymore....
Turncoat - He always had a bit of a silver tongue. if there were two things he would be remembered for it is his discretion and his way with words.
Turncoat - I thank you for your kindness Lord Breek. Now if you will excuse me I need some rest.
As the turncoat leaves as Tyraz gazes out at the fleet, watching the assembled Khaxvis vessels warp away. As he bowed his head he could feel himself panting with rage and his resolve to slay Volkarus was stronger than ever. Back on the generation ship Volkarus was just as furious; as he looked out one of his aides approached, asking him what is going to happen next. he had only one answer:
"Prepare for battle. There has also been an addition to the plan: Have a detachment prepare to storm the cathedral in Dagonris. I want the inquisition's archives turned upside down!"
Iovera sat in her chambers, now aand again thoughts of Tyraz crosed her mind, flashing with the images of her vision. As she tried to make sense she noticed something in the corner of her eye. She turned to find out what, looking out into an empty room. Irritated she called out, sensing the presence of someone not entirely visible. Deactivating her holofield, Arsac emerged from the shadows with a distorted haze, looking towards Iovera.
Iovera - Welcome, Inquisitor. I expected you to come.
Arsac - I'm not disturbing anything am I clericarch?
Iovera - ...No. Not at all.
Arsac - I bring grave news: Tyraz Breek has been discovered collaborating with known traitors of the imperium.
Iovera - Tyraz? Tyraz Breek? Uh... nevermind. Do you want us to help you somehow?
Arsac - It gets worse. My sources tell me that he has descened several hundred of the traitors' highest-profile members. The traitors in question are of the former Grand House Khaxvis. They have only one goal in mind: Attack Alcanti and place the house's master on the imperial throne.
Iovera - I will send my forces to defend your homeworld- no, I shall come to this world myself. Because... the matters are truly dire.
Arsac - Thank you Clericarch, I confess that the Inquisition is not prpared for such an incursion. Tyraz is the first descended being i have face and as you know i was powerless.
Iovera - Indeed.
Arsac - Three centuries of experiences and i could do nothing. I understand what the Dei'Ar are capable of and the inquisition has nothing effective to counter such demons.
Iovera nods as Arsac speaks. Recalling how Arsac simply stood there as Tyraz killed two of her inquisitors.
Arsac - Indeed, i remember well how you stood up to the creature.
Iovera - That vision... Fate of me and of this Zazane are linked... somehow. I must meet him again... just... I am not doing that for him or something, yes. I just want to find out what was the meaning of this vision.
Arsac - I could sense something stirring in both of you. However it is not my place to meddle in such matters.
Iovera - Yes. If you want our forces to deal with the resurgence, let it be. We Radeons do not tolerate heretics and rebels, and, yes... I will personally be present in the place... Just to watch the battle...
Arsac - There is indeed a high chance he would journey to Alcanti to revel in the carnage he would bring there... I will grant your fleet access to the gateway network however I am concerned that such travel may be too slow, i was informed the amassed fleet was to depart soon. I do not doubt the empire's defencive capabilities, however we are dealing with bings of trememndous power who cannot be killed with a blade! I have another request, Clericarch.
Iovera - Our forces will warp to Alcanti themselves so.
Arsac - What I am about to ask could be considered rather contraversial... I ask for aid in furthering my inquisitors in the mastery of elemntal energy. For years we have used various techniques to merge mind and body however it was purely defencive, we need something capable of fighting demons such as the Khaxvis elite.
Iovera - Oh... Do you want us to train you?
Arsac - Yes. I will grant study visas for teachers, chosen by your government, to enter the deeper parts of our monasteries. It's contraversial because very few non-draconis are allowed into the deeper sections where the cult lives and prays - including inquisitors.
Iovera - I fear that this can be dangerous... but yes. The threat of Khaxvis is major and we will allow some of you to be trained.
Arsac - Another option is that I pick my most adept inquisitors and they study within the Divinarium. But the archcleric may grow concerned that you would 'stray them from the flock'. We are aware of how zealous your practicioners are and none in the cult would take too kindly to seeing their inquisitors convert to Spode.
Iovera - Good.
Arsac - They are your teachers clericarch. If you would prefer their students learn under your natural conditions I will not argue as long as their needs are met. One last thing before i leave: If you wish to confess anything do so now; A clear mind is one free of doubtful thoughts.
Iovera - ...Yes.
Arsac - *inhales deeply* I am listening.
Iovera - I feel the strange... feelings towards that Zazane. This is unnatural...
Arsac - Can you describe them?
Iovera - Affection. Unnatural attraction..
Iovera pauses in thought. What she felt seemed completely alien to her. She had considerable trouble finding the right words before finally uttering one.
Iovera - ...Love?
Arsac - *smiles* Such feelings are far from unnatural clericarch. In fact there are tales where such feelings have driven people to accomplish the impossible. Why do you consider them unnatural?
Iovera - But he is a Zazane... And I am a Clericarch... This... can't happen... this...
Arsac - I have seen this before, the affection is... quite primal. He did save your life.
Iovera - ...Maybe...
Arsac - While I would normally condem the attraction towards a creature of.. his nature. You are not someone I normally speak to about such matters. Look inside yourself, think deep: what happened the moment you fell for him?
Iovera - I... I do not understand. I can't realise what.
Arsac - I will give you time to think it over. For now I will have inquisitors other than your new students withdraw from Crepusculum since they are the empire's best defence right now. Until we meet again... your Holiness.
Iovera - Goodbye, Inquisitor.
Arsac bows before leaving Iovera. As she leaves the High Inquisitor calls for two passing inquisitors to follow her with every intention of fulfilling her end of the bargain. Iovera decided to not waste any time and called for the Black Fleet to prepare itself.
The Battle for Alcanti
When the black fleet had finally arrived to relieve Alcanti they arrived a little too late. The defending fleets were already fighting valiantly against the Khaxvis-led onslaught. Both the planet's orbital defence twtwork and the fleets faough valiently to end the attack and below there were already signs of damage. Commanding the planet's defence aboard the Dominax Larnus swiftly opened holographic communication with Iovera the moment she arrived, while Arsac - who due to Iovera's preparations had left earier - was already at the Lord-Admiral's side.
Larnus - Black Fleet this is Lord-Admiral Larnus Vontarion, unless you are hre to help I advise you keep your distance.
Arsac - Larnus the Black Fleet is here under my permission along with Clericarch Iovera. Stand down alert and allow them to help.
Iovera - I and Jahric are here to help you. The Divinarium admires its allies and we shall fight together this time.
Larnus - Glad to hear. House Khaxvis is attacking in full force and they deployed ground troops the moment they arrived. Reinfocements in the shape of the 247th, 410th, 51st and 17th fleet are en-route but we could use whatever *turns to his right talking to somoene else, revealing a prominent scar on his left snout* Battlestations two and three report incusrions... Reports say that marines just appeared in the corridors.
Iovera went through the portal and appeared to the commanders with Jahric and Matheoward .
Arsac - Clericach, a pleasure.
Iovera - Jahric, you know what you should do. Go and lead the Twilight Guard to the victory. Matheoward, you shall stay with me. Your advice may help the Draconis.
Arsac - I was just informing the lord-admiral that our weapons can do nothing because of what Tyraz has done.
Larnus - So far the traitors are only bombarding military installations, he seems to be avoiding civillian casualties.
Arsac - How are ground forces holding up?
Larnus - We should be thankful that not all of them are unkillable. The house brought a large force of mercenaries with them and are now attacking on two fronts. One in Minos'Drakon and one in Dagonris.
Arsac - Why would he- *bows her head in realisation, snarling*
Jahric - We shall help you to fight the mercenaries in Dagonris as we can. We are teleporting there right now.
Arsac - Have all your units gather to defend the cathedral, That's their most likely target if they aren't there already. Drakon help us...
Larnus - Uriel is deep within the Palace behind a legion of Blood Dragons, if the foe cannot be killed we will have to hold them back for as long as possible.
Arsac - Is that it? What happened to the tactical genius I heard so much about?
Larnus - Tactics lose effect if your opponent cannot be killed.
Iovera - Our elementalists, and I, can kill them with relative ease.
Larnus - I am glad to hear. Remember that house Khaxvis are - for lack of a better word - freaks of nature. For millenia they have improved themselves with genetics and cybernetics beeyond recogniseability, even as mortals they have been vary dangerous.
Officer - Lord-Admiral we have new orbital signatures...
Jahric - Plasma these dragons, quickly! Let none surv-
Iovera - ...What?
In orbit the Fleet of Ruin had arrived, firing their shidium guns at the Khaxvis ships and tearing the ships apart, by this time Khaxvis had gained control of the two stations and used the orbital batteries in an attempt to overwhelm the Brood fleet. On the ground a shadow materialises in the form of a Zazane, as it snarled the shadow took shape as Tyraz Breek. Upon seehing him Arsac releases a roar of rage in Tyraz direction. In response he roars back, drawing his fireword. Iovera simply stands in confusion
Arsac - You.... I'll slit your throat demon!
Tyraz - It is my fault these....mistakes exist. It is my responsibility that I fix this.....
Iovera - ...That... Zazane... again? I'll... uh...
Arsac - Indeed, look around Tyraz. Alcanti is in turmoil because of you!
Tyraz - *he looks to Iovera, and then looks down at his feet, blushing black.* Hello, M-Mistress Iovera....*he then looks up to Arsac and growls* I will fix this! I realized I made this mistake almost immediatley after I Descended them.....
Arsac - If you reamain true to your word i -may- consider a pardon. Volkarus is attacking on two fronts: Minos'Drakon and Dagonris.
Tyraz - Leave Volkarus and his army to me....*turns to Iovera* Clericarch, be careful.
Iovera - With my powers and this... uh... Zazane with us, we will be able to fight them. Jahric will take care of mercenaries.
Arsac - Understood, I will join you Clericarch. The cathedral of Drakon is where the Inquisition is based and knowing these Khaxvis they must be after the archives.
Iovera - Indeed.
Iovera, along with Arsac arrived in Dagonris. Larnus was right - much of Dagonris remained intact however Khaxvis forces were pressing much of their attack on the cathedral in the centre of the city. A fortified line of inquisitors, auxillaries and Talon Marines stood between them and the Cathedral steps and the fighting was intense. A horde of mercenaries, vehicles and a few descended Khaxvis charged like a red tide towards the barricades. As the three of them moved in to help one of the officers on board the Dominax informed the ground team of a new development
Arsac - Unless those teleport powers of yours can direct you through a maze you will need me. The catacombs are where the inquisition's archives are based.
Arsac Leads Iovera through the cathedral catacombs, passing dead inquisitors and mercenaries as they go, seeing each one made her more determined than ever to stop the threat as quickly as she could eventually swearing the attackers would pay. As they headed deeepr down they faced increasing resistance. While iovera swiftly dealt with the demons Arsac occupied herself with the mercenairs, cutting and striking them down with little effors. On the Surface the defances were being overwhelmed, Tyraz teleported outside the cathedral and stood to relieve the defenders now standing in his true demonic form, towering over those who charged against him. he decimated the attackers with ease and for a moment Iovera felt the need to defend him, teleporting outside and attacking demons that came near. As she wondered to herself what she was doing Tyraz looked down and noticed her. A feeling of passion overcame him and he returned to his Zazane form - both of them stood awkwardly wondering what had come over them. The aukward silence was broken with Arsac on the comm - She had reached the arhive nexus but as she said this the channel was overcome with static. Realising that the mission must come first Iovera teleported back, leaving Tyraz to return to the defence.
Iovera and saw Arsac lying unconscious by a wall, two of Volkarus' honour guards were standing over her and contemplating how to finish her. Iovera telekinetically throws both of them against a wall before shocking the mboth until death. One of them thought they could surprise er but was simply shocked to the ground. Inside a loud, gravelly voice echoed through the archive chambers. Outside Tyraz could also hear a voice in his mind - Volkarus.
Volkarus - I thought you'd follow me... You're so predictable...
Tyraz - Volkarus, you make a fatal mistake!
Volkarus - *laughs* You keep telling yourself that... While we bicker my warriors would have overcome the battlestation defences. turning them against Larnus and his fleets. Under my authority you are stuck here. Not even your fleet of ruin can overcome three battlestations!
Tyraz - No...But the Black Fleet, Imperial Talon Navy, and Fleet of Ruin can challenge that!
Volkarus - The planet's defences were designed to resist the Confederation of Andromeda when it was at its' height. Your fleets are nothing.
Iovera was caught off-guard and was grabbed by the throat by Tornarion - Volkarus' second in command and a Draconis taller than she was. Tyraz could sense her pain and despite resisting as much as he could he had no choice. Spawning a wave of Zazane creatures outside he teleports inside to defend Iovers. As he lifts her up by the throat, squeezing tightly the creature smiled. When Tyraz appeared the Daconis warrior looked at him with a snarl. In rage both of them draw their swords and Tyraz spinning in a circle and slashing at Tornarion's waist. Making a successful attack, though not fatal, He watches as Tornarion's blood drips onto the floor, and snarls. Iovera, still in hs grasp, tries to hit the warrior and thanking Tyraz although as he is hit he attepmts to pry Iovera's staff from her. He was interrupted as Tyraz plunged his sword into Tornarion's chest, spraying botth him and Iovera in the creature's blood. As Tornarion roared in pain he teleported to the console he was using and noticed the download was only halfway done. While Tornarion was distracted Tyraz teleported behind him and knocked him down. Tyraz was slowly regaining consciousness from the ordeal.
Arrsac - The... download...
Tyraz - Do not worry Arsac.
As Tornarion struggles Tyraz grabs the Draconis by the face before pounding his head against the console. Tyraz smiled before leaping into the air and forcing Tornarion's head into the concole - almost obliterating the creatures skull before he slumped onto the floor.
AI - Warning, data transfer error, download suspended at 63% completion... data transfer, complete
Iovera - What happened...?
Tyraz - *runs over to Iovera and lifts her body into his arms, a look of worry and concern on his face* M-Mistress Iovera...A-Are you okay?
Iovera - Yes... I am fine.
Arsac - *manages to stand up* uugh... The scum managed to upload *cringess* 63% of the archives...
Iovera - What archives?
Tyraz - *looks down with a look of sadness* I have failed you...
Arsac - *limps to the console* The Inquisition archives. there's over 200,000 years with of data involving... well... whaever you want to know about evil: Cult listings, connections, patterns, rituals, philosophies, even the odd artifact listing. If Volkarus had the entire archive he would be unstoppable.
Tyraz - *looks up and snarls* Volkarus...Leave the scum to me. Iovera, Arsac, you get to safety....This is something I must do myself...
Iovera - We must stop him, so!
Arsac - And Tyraz... Nice work, reminds me of something I did once.
Jahric - *sending a message to Iovera* Your holiness, the Khaxvis forces in the Minas'Drakon are retreating.
Tyraz - *looks to Arsac and blushes slightly before it goes away* Thank you, Mistress Arsac. I'm glad I bring you back happy memories.
Blood Dragon - Not to rain on your parade but the Khaxvis aren't exactly retreating.
Tyraz - Volkarus must be stopped. I wish not for you to get hurt, Iovera...
Blooed Dragon - Several khaxvis managed to teleport inside the palace walls and- *static*
Jahric - My holiness, these Khaxvis are moving to the... palace?
Tyraz - *hears the Blood Dragon over the comm and then places Iovera down* Volkarus is inside the palace...I just know it....He told this to me.
Arsac - Uriel would rather die than let anyone take his throne or his family. If nothing else he would make a last stand in the throne room.
Iovera - We must go! Quickly!
Arsac - My place is here, i need to make sure the archcleric is unharmed. Go!
Iovera - Who, me?
Arsac - I said Arch-cleric, of the cult.
Iovera - Good.
Tyraz teleported directly inside, cying out to find Volkarus. Tthe palace interior was ruined. What were once lavish and gilded hallways were staned with blood and scored by gunfire. The bodies of both Blood Dragons and servants littered the hallways - it was a massacre. As tyraz travels deeper, cleaving any descended Khaxvis that get in his way , he reaches the throne room; the clash of swords and the roar of gunfire could be heard inside and he feared the worst. Uriel and what seemed like a small army of Blood Dragons were defending the throne with Uriel right in the middle. Volkarus had sent his honour gaurd to fight them but he was nowhere to be seen. Jahric and Iovera approached from outside and fighting what they could. Tyraz cut his way through the Honour guard to uriel who held his hand up as a sign that Tyraz was friendly.
Tyraz - Uriel, are you okay?
Jahric - *fires a plasma gun at honour guard* It does not do anything...
Uriel - I'm fine, he's our our side captain.
Jahric - Greetings, lord Ultanos.
Uriel - Salutations.
Tyraz turns to Jahric and nods to him before turning back to Uriel
Captain - Paragon, Alensia has not reached us... perhaps we should fear the worst.
Uriel - Alensia would rather die than leave her clutch...
Tyraz - Alensia....Alensia! Volkarus, that bastard!
Iovera - I will follow.
Tyraz teleported to Alensia's chambers as Iovera and Jahric followed behind, inside she was huddling five hatchlings, none of them older than seven years and in the corner of the room was a dead dagorian, his head nowhere in sight. As Tyraz approaches her she draws a fusion pistol, pointing it in his direction and stuttering in fear.
Alensia - Stay back! You're one of them!
Tyraz - Calm down! I'm here to save you, not kill you! Volkarus will be here soon....Unless his devilish plots have misled me again....
Iovera - ...Who is that?
Alensia - He... he tried to take my children, so I shot him. You're coloured like them and you are not my guards, what have you done!
Iovera - This... Zazane is with us.
Tyraz - It is my fault they are here....I am only trying to correct a mistake...
Alensia - You betrayed Uriel's trust and your kind bring death. why should I trust you!
Tyraz - Because currently I am the only one able to bring Volkarus and the Khaxvis down!
Hatchling - Mother... If the demon-man is with dem why hasn't he hit you yet?
Iovera - He is with us, child.
Alensia - Septis is right... If you were with Volkarus I would have been dead.
Tyraz - Mhmm. Now, since he is not here...Can anybody contact Uriel?
Alensia - Is he still alive? where is he?
Blood Dragon - Mistress, thank the lifeafather you are safe. *A demonic roar echoes through the hallways*
Iovera - 'Volkarus!
Blood Dragon - I only just avoided him on my way here... He's not one of our kind anymore...
Tyraz - Grrr.....At last, I have found you.... *Tyraz pushes past the Blood Dragon and readies himself for battle* You lot stay here...
Alensia - ...Alright.
Septis - Is the demon-man going to fight the other bad ones?
Alensia - Yes child, everything will be fine...
Tyraz - Alensia, Jahric.....Iovera, I do not wish for your deaths. I will fight this beast alone...
Iovera - Let the Messengers and Spode protect you... Tyraz.
Tyraz stormed dwon the hallway back towards the throne room. Over come with rage his chest was pumping with pace that with every step he snorted. The many scars that covered his body glowed with a deep, bright crimson. When he teleports inside he notices that every blood dragon in the room is dead, the walls are scarred and broken and the cloth that once hung from the ceiling was tapered and charred. Volkarus - now in full demon form and towering over the bodies - stood in the centre of it all, his hand firmly wrapped around Uriel and a menacing grin spread across his face as he watched his adversary squirm in vain.
Tyraz - Volkarus, put him down....NOW!
Volkarus - I don't answer to you anyomre Tyraz.... Forty-thousand years of hiding and running and today the pretender paragon dies!
Tyraz - Put him down or I swear to Umbrux that I will show you no mercy!
Volkarus - You have no idea how much I have wanted to bury a dagger into this whelp's heart. Today I avenge my ancestors' execution!
Tyraz transforms once again into a huge demon, spreading his wings and being engulfed in black energy. In response Volkarus smiles before impaling Uriel's stomach with claws of shadow before dropping him and leaving him slowly dying of his wounds.
Volkarus - Yes... let the gods battle Tyraz.
Tyraz - You are no god, Volkarus, only a mistake....
Tyras swings his claws at Volkarus's face but the creature siply teleports away from the blow before digging his claws into Tyraz' back. Tyraz manages to grab Volkarus by the neck and throws him over his shoulder and against a wall.
Volkarus - You may be a more powerful demon Tyraz.. but prior to my rebirth I was already the better man! Forty milennia of improvment has led to the being you see before you!
Tyraz - Only by my hand have you achieved such a state!
Volkarus - I am superior!
As volkarus lay in the hole the ceiling cracked, VOlkarus telekinetically lifted debris aroudn him before sending it flying towards Tyraz
Volkarus - Ultanos and their ilk never considered what power could be unlocked within their own cells, why do you think my kind looked so different from him even before the ritual?
Tyraz - Wrong! You have unlocked THE WRATH OF ZAZANE!! MILLIONS OF YEARS OF RAGE AND ANGER.....I AM ANGER INCARNATE!!
Volkarus - You are NOTHING ZAZANE! A RELIC FROM A RUINED AGE.
Tyraz grabs Volakrus by the throat before throwing him through the doors and out into the hallway. As he hits the ground he teleports behind Tyraz, wraps his arms around te neck and throttles the Zazane.
Tyraz - ZAZANE HAVE ALWAYS BEEN SUPERIOR! BREEK HAS ALWAYS BEEN SUPERIOR!! I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN SUPERIOR!!!
Volkarus - YOUR TIME IS OVER ZAZANE! THE IMERPIUM WILL BECOME MORE POWERFUL THEN EVER UNDER MY COMMAND
As the two of them struggle they drag each other around the room before Tyraz kicks Volkarus out of his grip and draws the firesowr,d jabbing it into VOlkarus' stomach. Knowing that with the sword was his bane Volakrus roared with rage, he then submitted; telling Tyraz he had won this battle before teleporting away. Afterward, Tyraz let out a pant of relief and returns to Zazane form with Volkarus' blood staining the blade. Uriel lay at the steps of his throne, his body was limp and he was hyperventilating, bleeding from the stomach and overwhelmed with pain. Tyraz walked over to assist, placing his hand over the wound. Uriel could bearly speak.
Uriel - Ty...
Tyraz - Sssh, Uriel....Do not speak, your strength is needed....
Uriel - Alensia... is she... safe?
Tyraz - Yes, she is safe.....Now, please, stay quiet, reserve your strength.
Uriel - *slowly pulls out out a small holoprojector for Tyraz* I'm... proud.... *drifts into unconsciousness*
Tyraz - No.....Not another one....
As Tyraz stood over Uriel's weakened body he felt anger and shame over what had happened. Uriel was now dying because of him. Several blood dragons entered the room laed by captain Davius. When he saw Uriel on the floor he ran to check his pulse. After checking he bowed his head before turning to Tyraz
Davius - ...He's dying. Did he say anything to you?
Tyraz - He wanted to know if Mistress Alensia is safe, which she is, and said that he's proud. He also gave me a holoprojector.
Davous - ...There appears to be a program inside.
Blood dragon - Captain we're losing the paragon. Internal bleeding, massive injury... He's lucky he survived this long.
Tyraz - Please, I do not know how to work this...
The captain accepts the projector, places it on the floor and activates the program. The room fills with countless projections: Many of them involving Blood Dragons killing politicians, citizens and suspected Ultanos sympathisers. One simulation shows one Ultanos member executed at the base of the throne with one of the Khaxvis sitting on it smiling as he declared such an action
Tyraz - W-What is this?
Davius - *speechless* Lifefather's breath. All this is archival footage from the Era of the Imposters, of the second house war... It's the real House Khaxvis.
Tyraz - Khaxvis will die....
Davius - I think Uriel wanted to show you what you saved the Imperium from. if they recalimed the throne this would have all happened again.
Tyraz - I....I saved the Imperium from this? I....I actually saved an empire? Davius - *Smiles* It certainly looks like it. Although considering what power you gave them it could have been worse.
Tyraz - Indeed...I need nor want mention in this part of your empire's history....You may claim that Uriel defeated Volkarus....I deserve no such mention or role in alien history books.
Davius - Tyraz, house Ultanos now owes a debt to you. Are you sure about this?
Tyraz - I almost completely killed your entire empire and house....Why should I get such mention as a hero?
Davius - Perhaps because you redeemed yourself. You realised how much of a danger Volkarus was so you set out to fix what you did... And from what I heard happened in Dagonris you weren't exactly very subtle.
Tyraz - Indeed....Tornarion's skull was not hard enough to withstand me....
Davius - I was more referring to what happened outside. A lot of people saw you and something like that won't be easy to forget.
Tyraz - Oh....Yes, indeed.....THAT is not an image of salvation, however.... It is usual for it to be considered an image of death and destruction....
Alensia - Is there anything that can be done?
Captain - We did what we could mistress, his wounds were too severe and I fear he will be in the garden soon.
Tyraz - I could Descend him....
Alensia - Isn't there anthing else, what about the Radeon? Because I don't want my husband returning as an abomination like Volkarus!
Tyraz - Ahem....
Alensia - My apologies Lord Breek. But you are not entirely like him...
Iovera - Let me see what can I do with his body. The Messengers gave me... the power...
Alensia - I don't understand...
As Iovera proposed the possibility of ressurection a feeling of doubt came over him. His mind was cast back to the Holy Shadow War, to Moxix, he could not forgive himself if that happened again. Iovera kneeled before Uriel's body and placed her hands on his chest.
Tyraz - Be careful, Iovera....This is how Moxix managed to launch his assault of undead all that time ago....I beg you, I hope you know what you are doing...
Iovera - Lord Telfar, returning from the afterlife as a guardian of us all, was said to bring dead people back to the life... Let me see if I can do the same.
Tyraz - I hope so, Iovera....I believe you can...
Tyraz places his hand on Iovera's shoulder, beliving in what she could do. Her eyes flash with a dark purple light and the same light swells from her hands. The energy creeps across Uriel's motionless body until it touches every point, making him glow a faint purple.
Iovera - Go back... to the light... I... summon you... Go back, your loved one awaits you... Your children do.
Alensia - Lifefather guide you home Uriel...
As the energy covers his body Iovera begins to feel weak and drained, she cringes at the discomfort. In a flash of light she is forced back before collpasing on the floor. As she does Tyraz panics at the danger, cries out her name and kneels down to comfort her, placing his hand on her shoulders and showing clear concern for her well-being.
Tyraz - Mistress Iovera, are you okay?
Iovera - ...uh... Yes. *goes back to her feet* That's quite better.
Jahric - Your Holiness, what happened?
Iovera - Everything is good, Predictor Advisor. The enemies are defeated, as I see.
Davius - The Khaxvis fleet are withdrawing and we have thousands of mercenaries who have been left behind, they have been arrested and await interrogation
Uriel slowly wakes up. Inhaling deeply before slowly opening his eyes to see Alensia's face. As he smiles at her she takes several breaths of relief as both of them smile. As he slowly stand up up the Blood Dragons kneel down in submission to him. Alensi urges him not to stand up too fast but as he clambers from the marble floor he sees Tyraz turn his back, his head bowed in sorrow as he walks towrds the door.
Uriel - Tyraz-
Tyraz - Hmm? What is it, Lord Uriel?
Uriel - I know you were responsible, but I forgive you. You saved many lives and I am in your debt. You realised that descending Volkarus was a mistake.
Tyraz - Indeed....But I am just a stranger.
Uriel - Perhaps this was Drakon's plan. Perhaps he wanted to show me that you were not the creature I first thought you were. What made you realise that descending Volkarus was a mistake?
Tyraz - The fact he would've slain your wife in cold blood and trained your children to be infiltrators....
Uriel - Do you believe what they say about calling my family pretenders?
Tyraz - No...I do not. I believe nothing they say anymore.
Davius - House Khaxvis were the real usurpers: They assassinated Uriel IV and kidnapped the remaining family, keeping them as secret trophies. Their rise to power was a fraud.
Tyraz - I should never have helped that tyrant Volkarus....*snarls* I apologize for all this, I really do...
Uriel - I accept, you didn't know about any of this and much of what they did over the forty millenia since the war was kept very secret by both sides. I am still in your debt. you were not aware of what had transpired. Is there anything I can do for you?
Tyraz - I do not deserve anything....Except that all records of me defeating Volkarus today are erased from your history books and instead portray you as his defeater.
Uriel - Hm, if that is what you wish then it shall be done. But I won't forget what you did for me, or my kin. A redeemed hero is still a hero - The man who liberated my house from imprisonment was the same.
Tyraz - Hmph...Volkarus is still alive, however. I will not rest until he is dead and his demonic head is placed upon my throne...
Uriel - At least the Inquisition would support you on that one. Apparently you helped save Arsac as well.
Davius - If anything Tyraz, you were the hero of Alcanti today.
Tyraz - *he looks down and tail swishes side to side, but nods and turns back to them* Maybe. However, I am still a bloodthirsty demon warlord...I will not always be the hero. However, I am glad that I managed to do a good deed...
Uriel - Farewell...
Tyraz leaves the ruined chamber as Uriel looked to Iovera, Jahric and eventually back to Alensia. He smiled knowing that what had been done today had not only dealt a serious blow to the traitorous House Khaxvis but rekindled Uriel's belief in Iovera's intentions along with a newfound respect for Tyraz. As the Khaxvis fleet left for parts unknown Volkarus had teleported onto his personal warship Regante Khaxvis. The wound inflicted by the firesword forced him to his knees and as he examined himself he stared in horror. Some of his scales had fallen off and those that remained looked blackened, rows of small spikes protruded from his forearms and as he moved his quaking hand to feel his chin he felt another fine row along the edge of his jaw. His breating was heavy and slow as he clamboured up. Fear turned to a burning rages as he looked at what he had become. A furnace burned inside him as the weakened breating bacame snorts of anger before he cried out one word that echoed across the ship...