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Ascension

Shadryn Aurion
Lord/Lady
Lord/Lady
Joined: October 10th, 2006, 6:43 pm

May 14th, 2014, 7:26 am #1

Time stood still in the black.

Despite the festering eternity that Shadryn had spent in this deepest of endless nights, he knew surprisingly little about the room in which he now lived. Light only reached Shadryn's eyes when the torturer arrived, carrying a torch to light the stage for his grisly work. His eyes were always blinded, be it by the endless dark, the sudden firelight, or simple pain so intense that it blotted out his very existence while it persisted.

The room was surprisingly large for a cell; the torchlight licked at stone walls that slowly crumbled with age and bit with a glint when it struck stained glass. Though the designs were mostly but dust now and many of the windows had been shattered, one could tell all of this was once representative of gods and religious figures long-since forgotten to time. It almost seemed to be something of a small cathedral, perhaps a ruin from before the vampires had come. Shadryn imagined he had been imprisoned here in some kind of twisted mocking gesture. Here to bleed upon sancitity, here to despair in a place that once gave hope. Here to slowly descend into insanity as the dark twisted its fingers in his ringing ears and made him forget if his eyes were open or shut.

The torturers were the only contact Shadryn maintained with any part of the world beyond this chamber. This was the third creature Indira had sent to populate his new dark, dank hell, and the third set of restraints they had tried. His first tormenter had bound him in magically reinforced chains and shackles that quickly proved too much for even an Angelus' strength, but not for his wiles. In the middle of one of the first “sessions”, Shadryn had snapped his own wrist intentionally in order to slide it free of the chains. Even with a broken wrist, the resulting blow crushed the bewildered bloodsucker's skull before the creature could interpret what had happened. Had his lackeys not rushed in to restrain the Nephilim once more, he might have escaped Lasymor right then.

But he hadn't, and so the inky black permeated and consumed. His sense of time had slipped ever since he had first descended into Siaraia, but by now it had long-since ceased to function entirely. He was no stranger to captivity, but even in his clouded, rambling mind he grasped that this was the worst he had experienced. Unlike the naïve humans that had tried to contain him before, it seemed that Indira, or at least someone with sway in Siaraia, knew all about Angeli. Specifically what it took to kill one, and what exactly their bodies were capable of. An indefinite lifespan and healing powers that bordered on the paranatural were no benefit to one in such captivity. His current tormentor called himself the Masseuse, and like both before him had used every tool available to him to carve, maim, hack, batter, and sear the Angelus in ways that would have killed a human many times over. The Nephilim often recalled an old story about a demigod who had brought forbidden fire to mankind in its infancy. He had been punished for this crime against heaven from the Almighty by being chained to a mountainside, where a massive eagle alighted to devour his liver. Overnight the liver would heal completely as the demigod was immortal, and the eagle would eat it again the next day. Such was Shadryn's life. He knew not if he'd been imprisoned for months, years, or even mere days. All he knew was that his ichor had flowed so readily that the floor beneath him was scorched black with the heat of it, and yet his body bore no lasting mark by the time the Masseuse returned to continue his “therapeutic” work.

The Masseuse actually seemed to take a particular interest in spilling his ichor. Perhaps it was the manner in which he came to replace his predecessor. The second torturer had clamped Shadryn to the stone wall with thick, heavy shackles so that he was completely immobile and therefore could not hope to wriggle himself free as before. Instead, Shadryn had bitten the inside of his mouth hard enough that burning ichor had flowed into his mouth. When his tormentor had come close to smile and cackle in the Angelus' face as he was so fond of, he had received a face full of liquid fire. Shadryn's ichor was akin to the stuff that burned in the hearts of suns, and hearing the creature's agonized, gurgling screams as his very skin and pallid flesh bubbled and melted off of his skeleton had brought the Nephilim the only nugget of relish he had felt since leaving the surface world.

And so the Masseuse had come, and restrained Shadryn anew with his arrival. The Nephilim was now suspended in the approximate center of his cathedral-cell, bound with an indeterminate number of steely, dark cords. They stretched his limbs almost out of his sockets, bound his midsection, and even snaked around his neck and dangled from his ankles. His skin, though woundless save for the scar over his right eye, was greasy and covered with filth that suited his drooping head and dregs of matted hair that had once been auburn-colored. His face was as filthy as the rest of him, and his mouth was stuffed with a gag that resisted his every attempt to spit out. It had been a gift after he had spit all over the second tormentor. His grey pants were all that remained of the clothing he had worn on the day he had been captured, and they too were torn nearly to shreds such that they covered very little. His four wings--always the august reminders of the freedom of flight and the holy power bestowed upon him--were similarly bound and stretched out behind him. Their feathers were matted and contorted with abuse. Many of them had come loose and littered the blacked floor all around. But yet, his wings still glittered a little with the power they still contained in those rare times that the light caught them. He was a squalid, vastly diminished, and begrimed mockery of what he once was, but he still was Shadryn Kyros Aurion. He found just clinging to his own name helped when he began to unhinge, though he knew it was but a poor delaying tactic for the inevitable.

Shadryn had given up struggling against the cords long ago. He had no idea in heaven or earth what these ropes were made of, but there was a reason they were being used on him. Whenever he wriggled, they tightened of their own accord. They were so tight now that they bit into his skin, occasionally causing dribbles of ichor to drip onto the floor. If he fought especially hard, new cords would even appear and find fresh patches of skin to bind. The Angelus' warped and weakened mind couldn't even determine where the ropes ended. Even in the light, it seemed that they stretched back into the shadows and anchored themselves on the dark air.

Honestly, the Nephilim could care less. Most of his time now was spent in a restless, sleepless, thoughtless stupor. He hung limply from his bonds and tried endlessly to slip into the cold grip of eternity, but he always eventually woke. If not on his own, then at the slice of one of the torturer's blades. As terrible as the injuries he sustained always were, they were never enough to grant him rest. And that, of course, was the point. When he did think, his thoughts were fragmented, hazy, and distorted. He knew not what Indira planned to glean from him as he had no information nor functional use to her cause. She just seemed to relish holding one of Siaraia's most bitter enemies in her pale grip. Shadryn still clinged to sanity, but he could feel his grip on reality slipping with every eternity he spent in this dark.

His numb trance was interrupted this time by the sound of approaching footsteps. The Nephilim's dim and bleak consciousness knew that the pain was coming for him again. The Masseuse would have new tools with him this time, as he had alluded to on his last visit. And yet, Shadryn found himself oddly craving the visit, if only as a way to shatter the dark for but a brief moment and to feel something other than the cords around his body and the cold, noxious mist of the dark air. When the footsteps approached the door, he squeezed his eyes shut to brace for the sudden flare of light that always blinded him.
Last edited by Shadryn Aurion on May 14th, 2014, 7:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.

And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
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Salem Xavier
Force of Nature
Force of Nature
Joined: August 8th, 2005, 8:36 pm

May 15th, 2014, 6:38 am #2

"-And at the lower levels we house the more dangerous, my Queen," his deep voice did little to mask the smirk on his lips as he led the queen through the dungeons, showing Salem what Indira herself had built up from nothing. To anyone familiar with the queen, it would have seemed quite odd for Indira to ask for an update on her prisoners, and even stranger still to see her descending the staircase into the darkness. But to the two strolling through the damp corridors, this seemed only natural.

For Indira was not Indira at all, and all those familiar enough to notice the change in her patterns had been long since replaced.

Sure, the woman whose heels clicked incessantly against the stone boasted the same pale white hair, the same deadly horns, those same dark red eyes and that ever-present scowl, but it was all a mask.

Her hard gaze turned to her companion, urging him to continue. He faltered for a moment, gasping softly at her gaze before folding his hands behind his back, moving forward as he found his voice once more. "There is only one here, a creature too dangerous for the farm." He glanced sidelong at her, his expression somewhere between nervous and relieved as he led her down another small staircase, deeper into the darkness.

"Of the Angeli, is he not?" 'Indira' asked, her voice sounding strange even to her own ears. She'd worn the mask for months, and still the voice sounded so foreign.

"Yes, my Queen," 'Evander' replied as he approached a pair of wide wooden doors, turning to glance at the queen, then back at the doors; this was delicate.

"So far removed," Indira observed, tilting her head to the side by just a hair. "I assume he's caused trouble." It came as a statement, but her companion treated it as a question.

"Not necessarily, Your Majesty, but as an Angelus-"

"His blood. I know," she cut him off, then turned towards the doors. "I would like to see this Angelus."

"My Queen?" Evander asked, concern darkening his handsome face. His brows knit together and his lips formed a hard line. "It is not advisable to- His blood is-"

Her glare cut him off and left no more room for argument. Evander swallowed hard, tugging at the collar of his tunic before stepping forward slowly to pull one of the ancient doors open. No light could be seen within. The queen could see without issue, but gestured for her companion to retrieve a torch nonetheless.

Indira's steps echoed around them as she entered the chamber, gaze finding the prisoner, along with his binds, as a wicked grin stretched across her pale lips. While Indira may not have known this man, Salem most certainly did.

She gestured for her companion to close the door behind them, an action he did not at all agree with, but dared not argue. "It seems the gods have graced me with a throne-warming gift, Evander," she continued, moving to circle the prisoner. Even as she had to duck below or step over a few of his restraints, the grin never left her lips.

Standing before him once more, she stepped dangerously close, eliciting a gasp from Evander as he watched on behind her. "Shadryn," she spoke his name aloud, and the glee could be felt in her words. She stared at him for a long moment, taking in his battered, broken appearance; reveling in it. Then, without warning, she lifted a pale hand towards his gagged mouth, meaning to remove the obstruction.

This time Evander did interject, stepping forward eagerly. "Your Majesty, I would not- It is not safe."

Indira spun on her heel, shooting a glare his way that spoke volumes all on its own. "The Angelus knows better than to attempt anything foolish, doesn't he?" Indira turned back, eying her prisoner with a false pout. The doors were closed now, there were no wandering eyes or ears to learn of her deception, and as she spoke next her mask fell away and Salem stood before him, her bloody gaze shining in the dim light. "Our Angelus should know... One sudden movement, and I will gouge out his eyes," she spoke to Evander, but her words were meant for Shadryn, and her stare never left him as she removed his gag.

Now this truly was a treat.


{ She'll suck you dry, and still you'll cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll make you weep, and moan and cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll eat you alive }
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Shadryn Aurion
Lord/Lady
Lord/Lady
Joined: October 10th, 2006, 6:43 pm

May 15th, 2014, 8:01 am #3

Sounds came to him as if he lay at the bottom of a lake, drifting in a miasma of garbled half-formed thoughts and ancient memories revisiting. His head drooped from his neck like a wilted flower and he kept his eyes screwed shut behind the curtain of matted hair; the last thing he cared to gaze upon--while he still had the choice--was the blithesome grin of the Masseuse as he entered the room. Even in his wretched fog, though, he grasped that something was amiss about this visit. There were two sets of voices and footsteps, not just one. They hadn't sent a pair since the second torturer had been slain. At the time, Shadryn had surmised that this was to keep his existence a secret privy to only a certain number. After all this time, though, he no longer cared.

The visits felt the same for him regardless of the number of visitors, anyhow.

It was only when he became dimly aware of the fact that he recognized neither of the voices that he at last began to rouse. His consciousness slowly ascended from its stuporous sea, and he saw the dancing light of a torch playing on the other side of his eyelids to mix with the memory and fantasy swimming in his skull. The image of an Angelus of incomprehensible beauty but odd, transparent wings joined that of a young warrior woman standing before a window looking out over Eomer, and both began to fade as the Nephilim at last shook himself back into the real world.

”Shadryn.”

The Nephilim actually twitched involuntarily as his name was uttered, reverberating between his temples like an echo. He gently rocked back and forth a few inches at a time, and meanwhile his bonds tightened around him even more ever-so-slightly. One actually bit into his left forearm, causing a rivulet of liquid fire to course down his pale skin slowly. If one looked closely, they could see the red chords of muscle in the wound. If the Angelus felt the pain, though, he did not show it. He didn't move again. The voice, however, pinged deep into his memory and struck a few distant chords. It was unfamiliar to him, but there was something in the simpering glee of the tone that brought forth a froth of dread from deep within. And then his eyes opened.

They opened but a tiny crack, such that one could scarcely see the glisten of the eyes within behind a curtain of unkempt hair. It was enough to see the regal, malignant face dancing before him. Eyes that once shown like molten gold now had been besmirched into a dull tallow, but they still met hers without fear. She withdrew a bit as she castigated her servant, and his head raised on his neck just a bit to follow her. His eyes opened a bit more, studying her curiously. The tenuous hold on sanity he still maintained told him this was Indira, queen of Siaraia, though the pair had never met previously. And yet, the rest of him that had largely fractured and become confused and disjointed with the endless misery warned that something else was amiss. There was something to the voice, something to the glint in this pale Queen's malevolent eyes, that hinted at something worse. But what could possibly be worse than the Queen herself paying him a visit?

”The Angelus knows better than to attempt anything foolish, doesn't he? Our Angelus should know... One sudden movement, and I will gouge out his eyes.”

And then it all became clear. The Queen's face melted away before his very eyes to reveal a face he remembered all-too well. The recognition was obvious in his eyes. For a moment, his brain struggled to make sense of what he saw. The image seemed to him shift between Salem and Indira, as his grip on reality was like a gossamer thread in moments such as these. He wanted to badly for it to be the Queen that he almost willed it so in his own mind, refusing to accept such a terrible truth. But in the end, reality won out. The name reached the forefront of his mind, bringing a terrible and long-bitter hatred along with it.

Salem Xavier.

She pulled the gag from his mouth, and for a moment his mouth hung agape as he tested his jaw muscles. His eyes peered out as nothing but tiny glints of light from behind the curtain of hair that hung in her face, but perhaps for the first time in ever they had spoken, they refused to meet hers. His penetrating, querying, inquisitive gaze was gone, and he no longer had the inner strength or will to look at her as equals. Something deep within him pined away at this fact, but it was true. He doubted he would ever be in someone's power ever again so much as he was at that very moment, and of all the creatures in Avalon that he would most despise controlling him thus, Salem was far and away the worst of them all. His eyes followed the dregs of his bangs down to their tips dangling in front of his face, and he gazed at that absently as he spoke.

The Masseuse only removed his gag on very rare occasions when he wanted to hear the screams. Shadryn had not properly spoken for several visits now. His voice came out as little more than a whisper in the dark, as fleeting as the flicker of flames on the walls. It was gritty and hoarse and had lost the deep, unchallenged confidence it had once had, but it was comprehensible.

”Oh son of the morning, how thou art cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations...”
Last edited by Shadryn Aurion on May 15th, 2014, 8:11 am, edited 2 times in total.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.

And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
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Salem Xavier
Force of Nature
Force of Nature
Joined: August 8th, 2005, 8:36 pm

May 28th, 2014, 5:22 am #4

Blood-red eyes watched him closely, surprised at the wreck of a man she'd found. Never had Shadryn been one to give in so easily; never one to appear so weak. Salem didn't know whether she should be delighted or disappointed.

He refused to meet her gaze, a reaction she noted with a twitch of her head to the side, her gaze passing over his battered form. Up, down, and up again to search for those eyes she'd not seen in years.

If Indira didn't lay chained, the forgotten husk of a woman, in an old, forgotten cell, Salem would thank her personally.

It seemed the queen had found a way to break the Angelus. That was the only word she could conjure to describe this shell of a man: broken. The only thing that would make the vampiress happier to see this would be if she'd have done it herself.

Her lips contorted into a wide smirk when he finally spoke, noting all too happily the raspy quality his voice had taken on. The words he uttered came as little surprise to the queen; this was indeed Shadryn, of that she had no question.

"I'd think it unwise to waste a weakened voice, love." That was all she said. It was all she cared to say. Seeing him, chained, broken, weakened, that was more than enough for Salem. She'd never been fond of the Angelus; he'd always been such a damned thorn in her side and to see him, reduced to this brought a grin to her ruby lips she was sure she'd wear a long while yet.

Still, Salem would forever be Salem, and she wasn't quite done. Taking a single step forward (and ignoring the surprised, warning gasp from Evander), she leaned forward to further seek his gaze, hardly bothered if his eyes met hers or not. "Not to worry. I've missed you too, Angelus," she lied with an airy laugh, the deceit clear in her voice. This was too grand a gift to pass up, and the blood queen couldn't help but wonder just what sort of fun could be had with this little discovery.


{ She'll suck you dry, and still you'll cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll make you weep, and moan and cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll eat you alive }
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Shadryn Aurion
Lord/Lady
Lord/Lady
Joined: October 10th, 2006, 6:43 pm

June 17th, 2014, 3:52 am #5

One could hardly say that Shadryn had "given in". There was really nothing for him to give. It was not as if he was a spy from some rival nation with valuable information. Indira had just kept him here as a trophy and refused him the honor and release that would come from death. His life had become misery without end, and his spirit had been gradually worn down by the one force that broke all things: time. Even caged birds sang, but his voice had long since left him. The breathless, garbled sounds that escaped his throat now sounded like little more than wisps of wind from an old, forgotten cavern. They carried just about as much sense, and they were dismissed just as readily. Generally, his gag was only removed to allow him to scream.

Or, at the least, to attempt it.

The Nephilim briefly mused if it was finally his time. For millennia he had eluded death like an obsessed lover. The times he had nigh gone to bed with her were as varied as they were numerous, but he had to admit that prior to his sojourn in Siaraia, he would have choked to death on his own laughter at the notion that Salem Xavier would be the end cause. Still, did the dead really care how they had died after oblivion took them?

The point was likely moot, though, as Shadryn's agonizing mind reflected virtually no chance that Salem was here to end his torment. If anything, it seemed like his luck had just taken a turn south. The Masseuse just brought pain of the flesh, but Salem would bring the salt of humiliation with her. She was taunting him even then, bending over to thrust her head into his face. At last he allowed his tallow gaze to meet hers, eyes but glistening crescent moons between half-closed lids. He had so hated the face that now danced before his, but now he found himself little more than indifferent. The pain would come again regardless of what he felt. He would likely rot away the rest of his days in this chamber indifferent of his feelings about his tormentors. Hers was just another pale face which matched a few hazy memories from a previous life. Nothing more.

He did not speak again, but instead did as he had done once before with another of his visitors. He bit the inside of his mouth and let the searing ichor flow between his teeth, and then spat it out. Unlike before however--when he had spat it on the face of his oppressor--he spat it at the floor just shy of Salem's feet. Then he met her eyes again, just giving her a wordless gesture to show that his resolve was not yet all gone. The gesture smoldered smoking on the stone floor, glistering like liquid fire in a unique way that only the lifeblood of the Winged could.

Perhaps if I scorn her enough, she'll end me after all.

Last edited by Shadryn Aurion on June 17th, 2014, 3:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.

And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
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Salem Xavier
Force of Nature
Force of Nature
Joined: August 8th, 2005, 8:36 pm

June 30th, 2015, 2:27 am #6

The more she thought on it, Salem was almost disappointed. This was hardly the angelus she remembered... The one she'd fought, the one she'd fucked...nothing remained of that man, not even a shadow. Once upon a time he'd been a worthy adversary, a challenge. There was nothing challenging about this husk of a man, nothing exciting or enticing about him now.

Even his attempt at defiance was lazy, at best. Utter disappointment.

But of course Salem wouldn't show how she felt, for had she ever? A sharp hiss escaped her lips, but she did not move, surrendered not a single step even as she felt his blood sizzle at her feet. Instead a pale hand reached up, gripping his chin tight and lifting it, forcing him to face her. "You missed, love," she cooed, face dangerously close to his own, flirting with danger, as she'd always done. "My face is up here," she continued with a sultry grin.

She watched him for but a moment before releasing his chin and stepping back, eying him curiously. "How long have you been down here?" she asked, red gaze narrowed and head tilted to one side. "I'm surprised at you, actually... You let her capture you, like a wounded bird. Incredibly unlike you, Shadryn." She wore her trademark smirk then, moving away to circle him, her crimson eyes taking in every detail of his "cell." It was fitting, considering who it was that was chained before her. Even still, she couldn't help but wonder just why he was kept here, chained, tortured. She was sure he could serve a higher purpose.

"I wonder..." she continued as she paced back towards him, "Just what would you do... to earn your freedom?"
Last edited by Salem Xavier on July 1st, 2015, 6:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.


{ She'll suck you dry, and still you'll cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll make you weep, and moan and cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll eat you alive }
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Shadryn Aurion
Lord/Lady
Lord/Lady
Joined: October 10th, 2006, 6:43 pm

July 27th, 2015, 3:55 pm #7

Her touch on his chin was as the sizzle of the rain on a lava flow and he felt the bite of it through the ashy haze of his mind. The chill of her fingertips was all-to familiar to him. He remembered when her touch was not a spiteful grab but a caress, not a single snarky touch but a whole body cooling his burning form and melding with his. Fire and ice, life and undeath, good and evil, one and the same. The memories flooded him all at once in images and flashes that where there one moment and replaced the next by a similar feeling, but warm. Another soul who had merged with his to form something hotter than before. For an instant, as she forced him to look upon her, he saw not Salem but a certain blonde-haired human who had once touched him in much the same way, once bound him in chains in much the same manner as this. Once joined herself to him in much the same manner as Salem had. A binary star system that fused together. The same feeling, but different. Different how? a voice in his head wondered. Just different.

"How long have you been down here? I'm surprised at you, actually... You let her capture you, like a wounded bird. Incredibly unlike you, Shadryn."

She released his head and it went back to bobbing limply at the end of his neck, like a balloon that had lost too much helium to be able to float any longer. When he replied, it came as wavering sound from inside a curtain of matted hair. He no longer dared look upon her, even if he had wanted to. His shame was now absolute.

"For a thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday when it is past, or as a watch in the night."

Repeating ancient proverbs crudely translated from an otherworldly tongue somehow passed as an answer in Shadryn's tangled, warped mind. As to her taunt, he had no answer for that. It wasn't as if he'd allowed himself to be captured. In truth, the circumstances that led to his current "predicament" currently eluded him. The memory danced beyond his recollection like a hazy silhouette behind a curtain. Those were days so long past that they felt as but yesterday, and yet a lifetime. He could not begin to chance a guess at something so trivial to him as the number of rotations the planet had made while he was hopelessly ensnared so deep within its depths.

Salem was pacing about now, circling him like a pleased child circles a caged zoo animal. Shadryn's body was tingling in a way he hadn't felt since what felt like a previous life. For whatever reason his chin yet felt chilled, as if her touch had lingered on his skin. Perhaps it was just the thrill of a touch that didn't bring pain with it. Regardless, Salem's mere presence was as simultaneously uncomfortable and exciting to him as it always was. Except this time he was in really no state to deal with it reasonably, so he just tried to ignore her and withdraw back within himself.

That was until she mentioned freedom.

It couldn't be true freedom. No, not really. Not the freedom he had felt when he'd simply wandered Avalon's lands. Freedom he'd felt so long ago that he scarcely remembered what it had been like. Salem was not the type to grant clemency. Still, the promise of something, anything other than this cell? Other than these demonic cords that, at that very moment as they did every moment of his life, threatened to tighten so much that they severed his limbs? Indeed, that was their ultimate purpose. Indira (or someone in her court) had known a thing or two about Angeli and how to kill them. Shadryn could regrow one lost limb given time and rest, but total dismemberment or severing his head would easily kill him. These cords threatened both if he struggled too much. The tantalizing prospect of being free of them brought him back into the room once more if only for a moment, and he actually raised his head to look at Salem of his own volition. His eyes were once molten, tallow irises of knowledge and reason but were now tarnished and besmirched with the shame of endless captivity. They met the victorious, haughty pride of Salem's eyes with a questioning glance.

He said nothing. The look was enough.

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.

And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
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Salem Xavier
Force of Nature
Force of Nature
Joined: August 8th, 2005, 8:36 pm

July 28th, 2015, 2:13 am #8

As always, the Queen would never admit defeat. He was broken, sure, bound, yes, beaten, definitely. But salem knew this man; she knew him better than she'd ever care to admit. This wasn't it. This couldn't be the end for him. They both knew it; Salem was confident he believed it just as much as she.

The look on his face when he finally lifted his gaze to meet her said everything she'd wanted to hear and more, without the uttering of a single syllable.

That man she remembered was there, deep, deep down he was there, just waiting to be freed. But... was it a risk Salem was willing to take? She knew Shadryn, who he was, what he thought (of her and her people in particular), and how powerful he was... It was a gamble, to say the very least, but it could prove... entertaining, at the least.

"Your disdain for me has never faltered," she spoke, glancing around the room at the cords that bound him. "You've never been my biggest fan... and have made that feeling known, time and again. Just how many attempts have you made on my life?" She paused, as if awaiting an answer though she expected none. Still, her lips curled into a dangerous smirk. "You've landed us in such a unique predicament. It would be so easy to simply kill you." she crept forward, closer to the cords, and reached out to grasp one lightly. "It could happen in an instant... And that would be that," she continued, her words trickling off into a chuckle as her gaze found his again.

"But there would be no fun in that, would there?" No, she wanted to know just how desperate he'd become. Would she regret her decision? Probably. But what would eternal life be without the occasional risk? And the opportunities this presented... "I wonder just how you'd appreciate working with me, instead of against me for a change."


{ She'll suck you dry, and still you'll cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll make you weep, and moan and cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll eat you alive }
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Shadryn Aurion
Lord/Lady
Lord/Lady
Joined: October 10th, 2006, 6:43 pm

July 28th, 2015, 2:28 pm #9

In truth, when Shadryn had heard the word "freedom", he had mentally changed it to the word "death" without a second thought. Every fiber and facet of his being ached for a release from his misery. Voices screeched through every corner of his brain like the souls that lined the walls of the Abyss. His form atrophied and ached from both disuse and endless torture for what seemed like an age. The pain of the razor chords constantly threatened to tear into his flesh. And yet, all this was as a bee sting on an uncomfortably hot day compared to the pain of his shame. Once a legend, hardly a chosen one but the one his world needed nonetheless. He'd done things he certainly wasn't proud of, but at least they had been his choice. Now, all choices had been stripped from him and his every waking moment was spent grappling with what tenuous hold he yet had on sanity. Free, indomitable spirit though he was, time eroded all things. Now he simply wanted it all to end. He'd lived too long, done too much. Grown bored with simply existing. Perhaps that was why he'd come down to Siaraia in the first place. Maybe a part of him was asking for simple death.

Regardless, what he had gotten was anything but. There was a fleeting instant when he thought Salem might be inclined to grant his wish, but the quiet voice of reason remaining in his skull knew that simply couldn't be the case. Salem was a notorious sadist who reveled in the suffering of her enemies and, above all, loved to win. She would never grow tired of such an interesting toy as he. He felt her hand on his chords as a spider feels vibrations in its web, if said spider was somehow ensnared in its own trap. She babbled on about things that were of little consequence to the raging din inside his head. Things from the past, things about the present that were blatantly obvious, the like. Shadryn mused on one of the stained glass windows behind her, noting the way it had cracked in such a way that the damage resembled a jellyfish. Then she at last got to the point.

"I wonder just how you'd appreciate working with me, instead of against me for a change."

This gave Shadryn pause. For a moment his head quieted, and his reason prevailed. His arm which had been sliced open was healing right over the exposed muscle and he felt that slicing pain fade as well. He regarded Salem with a feral gleam in his eyes, a paradoxical fusion of madness and logic swirling in their irises. His voice finally spoke something comprehensible to someone other than him.

"If you have the slightest idea that could possibly work out in your favor, slut, then you have grown even madder than I."

His voice, at last, was clear and cold. It was not even hoarse, as Angeli had no need for water. In his moment of clarity, Shadryn found the rare inner strength to look her directly in the eye. His candor was shocking for someone who was being offered some semblance of freedom. Then again, Shadryn always was a strategic thinker. Though what currently went on in his head rarely resembled coherent thought, he at last had an idea. A last idea. A final solution.[/color]
Last edited by Shadryn Aurion on July 28th, 2015, 2:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.

And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
Slow Time
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Salem Xavier
Force of Nature
Force of Nature
Joined: August 8th, 2005, 8:36 pm

July 29th, 2015, 1:16 am #10

The queen wasn't sure, this time around, just what she should expect from the angelus. Never before had she encountered him so defeated; never before had she offered him anything but a swift death. For once, it seemed that was what he wanted, and as such, was the one thing she did not dangle before him.

That single, simple word stung, as it always had, but Shadryn would never know it by looking at her. Salem's expression remained just as still and cold as ever, though her grip tightened just a hair on the cord between her fingers. Oh, oh how she wished to tug at it, to watch it all unravel with the angelus in the center...

But that was too easy. That was what he wanted. That simply wouldn't do.

"Has no one ever taught you not to bite the hand that feeds?" She spoke with an even, steady tone, her voice as calm as her expression. All those years had taught the vampiress a thing or two about self-control, about masking her emotions until expressing them would better suit her needs.

She released her grip on his restraints, moving back to stand just a little bit closer to him... close enough to inflict a fair amount of damage if she so chose. But her pale hands remained clasped behind her back, and her bloody gaze remained fixed on his, a false frown tugging at her painted lips. "Perhaps you need more time to think it over." What should have been a question, she posed as simple fact.

Then, without another word, she stepped backward, staring into those dim eyes. In another moment, she was gone, leaving him to his own cold, empty cell and whatever thoughts remained in that maddened mind.


{ She'll suck you dry, and still you'll cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll make you weep, and moan and cry, to be back in her bosom, to do it again }
{ She'll eat you alive }
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