ALTERED HISTORIES ERA
POWER GAMES ERA
The scene begins in space, sprawling across starfields as a voice speaks over the image, narrating:
"It had been nearly five years since my forces met their first defeat - at the hands of strangers.. I had been careless.. I had allowed myself to grow arrogant and I paid the price for my hubris: however as I gaze out at the stars I realise now that I can no longer lay in hiding - they humiliated me, they must suffer the consequences of such an action.."
The starfields begin to clear and an image of Earth appears, tranquil yet ominious as it floats in the depths of space.
"..They will all suffer.."
Eve Of War
(edit below this line: the location is Earth - it is a sunny day and rather pleasant, crowds of people go about their daily lives and the world is pretty much at peace - few (if any) would suspect anything wrong and in general people will be going about their daily lives)
Arbiter stands upon the Tokyo Tower in Japan, overlooking the city, watching the people scurry through the streets like busy ants.
"Something about this world keeps drawing me back to it..." he thinks to himself. He looks around for a moment, with a small pang of worry gripping him. "Something bad will happen...something always happens...I just get that feeling..." There was a sudden rustling sound behind him, and Arbiter turned suddenly, drawing his sword to slice his enemy into ribbons... but there was no one, but a flock of birds. He sighed. "Maybe I'm just being paranoid."
"Or just using some common sense... we're about due of another apocalyptic event." a familiar voice said. A ball of darkness emerged from the shadows casted by the birds, slowly forming a body. The shadows dispersed revealing Tulwar, who had been honing his powers since their last encounter. "Long time no see... in fact, it's been awhile since I've seen much of anyone."
"Ah, Tulwar. It's been a while since you left for your...own pursuits."
Suddenly a sound akin to thunder comes from the sky above as a strangely familiar vortex begins to open - for some the sight of this vortex brings back memories.. not necessarily pleasant ones either: yet something seems different this time..
Tulwar's expression brightened as he turned toward the vortex. "See? You're not paranoid." he said, laughing at his own humor. "So... since you seem to know what's happening here... What's happening here?"
Arbiter shakes his head. "I don't know."
The thunderous sound grows alarmingly stronger as the vortex expands, crackling with energy as a huge metallic object emerges from it - resembling a battle-ship of immense size: meanwhile across the major cities of the world similiar vortexes burst open and more of these ships started to emerge: causing some to panic while others simply stared in awe.. wondering what was happening.
Arbiter draws his thirteen foot blade and watches the oncoming horde, with no emotion upon his face.
A loud beeping came from Tulwar's pack. Pulling out his laptop, a map of the world appeared flashed onto the screen, covered with thousands of red blips. "Hey Arbiter... this isn't the only ship... they're everywhere." He showed the map to Arbiter. "What should we do?"
Suddenly a strange energy emits across the globe, televisions turn to static and computers start to blink on and off - after a few moments all screens have the image of a familiar human male, dressed in black and standing in front of a black fight with a golden fist on it: he stares out from every screen with eyes that burn like hot coals as he speaks out..
"Citizens of Earth - I am the Voice Of Man, ruler of the Golden Empire: you do not know me but nearly five years ago my forces were defeated on a distant world - I have tracked those responsible down to this world.. thus this world is guilty of harboring enemies of the Golden Empire, the sentence would normally be death but that would be far too easy, far too merciful - thus I am declaring Earth under my occupation.."
Tulwar paused for a moment, giving Arbiter a chance to speak. Seeing he had nothing to say, Tulwar sighed. "Well, no one can hide a signal of that magnitude, I'll try to track it... But what's up with you? We're being 'invaded', yet you seem to not think anything of it..." He rolled his eyes and pressed a few keys, then waited for his map to update.
As Tulwar begins to track the signal the vortex nearest them expands further and a huge structure akin to a floating tower descends from the sky, heading for the ground below - as it finishes it's descent it lands on the ground, levelling a few blocks in the process as crowds flee.. after the dust settles the tower stands over the area.
Arbiter's eyes begin to glow a fiery red as he summons the power of chaos. The skies darken, and a tension hangs in the air, as if all the madness in the world is poised, ready to break loose.
At that moment the vessels that float over the cities of Earth begin to shudder slightly as a voice speaks out across every radio-frequency "..you know I can detect some rather unusual energy patterns - you think I forgot about you, keeper of balance? do you remember how my vessels are programmed to fall at my command - now imagine if I let them fall.. all of them.. at once.. upon every city on Earth.. would you be fast enough to stop them? would you be willing to sacrifice the lives of this world as you had done so many others?"
The Voice's remark caught Arbiter by suprise. "No.......just a coincidence." he thought to himself. Looking up at the starships, an expression of anger contorts itself on Arbiter's face. "DO NOT TEST ME, TYRANT! I'LL SEE TO IT YOUR VOICE DROWNS WITHIN THE DIN OF CHAOS!"
As Arbiter yells a robed figure appears next to him and Tulwar, clearly female yet hidden from head to toe in crimson red - save for a pair of glowing yellow eyes "..be careful what you wish for" she notes with dry humor.
Arbiter hears the mysterious woman, and calms down, his eyes changing from glowing red back to gold. "WHAT DO YOU WANT?" Arbiter calls out.
Misery hovers in place for a few moments before she looks towards the tower - she walks straight towards it.. literally walking on air, descending as if walking an invisible set of stairs.
As Misery approaches the tower the force-field glows brighter and a beam of light emits from the structure - acting like a searchlight: a voice speaks out across the world once again "..another hero seeking to oppose me I suppose? you disappoint me - I would of thought you would of learnt not to test my patience. how many of your allies will you send to their deaths this day?" - although keeping the light on Misery the voice seems to addressing Arbiter.
Arbiter watches the skies, waiting...
Misery hovers in place, her eyes flashing slightly as she speaks out, addressing the mysterious voice: "Great Leader of the Golden Empire - I seek counsel with you in private, I am no ally to the beings that oppose you.. I am but a humble traveller in search of answers: if you would afford me but a fraction of your time I would explain things further.." - she pauses, awaiting the reply.
"What is she?" Arbiter thinks to himself. "She's unlike no other being I've ever seen...well, except Eclipse, but this one is different. I can feel a kind of darkness cloaking this one."
Tulwar starts to sink into his own shadow. "Hey, we're going to need some back up on this one... Arbiter, try to be careful." Disappearing completly, the shadow dispersed.
For a moment there is silence as the vessels above simply hover in place - then after a while the Voice speaks out, for the first time their is a very faint sign of confusion "..I should kill you were you stand, woman.. yet if you're so eager to talk: so be it.." - with that a beam of energy races towards Misery and attempts to transport her into the tower in a flash of light.
"..as for you.." the Voice notes, address Arbiter again "..I don't know where your friend has gone but it is meaningless, you humiliated me - so I shall repay the favor.." - with that one of the vessel's blasts a cluster of small missiles towards Arbiter.
Misery doesn't react as the beam of energy heads towards her - she glances back slightly to Arbiter and Tulwar, noticing Tulwar disappearing into a portal: she simply looks directly to Arbiter, her glowing yellow eyes staring out without blinking as she projects her thoughts: "..I am many things" - she is then hit with the beam of energy and vanishes as she's teleported into the tower.
Arbiter leaps off of the tower, dodging the missles as they smash into the tower; He hovers in midair.
The ship stops firing after the missiles miss - the destruction caused however causes panic in the streets, across the world similiar chaos begins to surface as rioting begins in city streets and armies start to make themselves visible: a few cities had already began to send fighting-jets and missiles towards the invasion fleet, in short war was beginning to raise it's terrible head on a grand scale.. though for Arbiter at least a more pressing matter is at hand as the ship, having stopped its assault, begins beaming down squadrons of troops to the city-streets below - scattering the crowds even more as they begin rounding them up like lambs to a slaughter.
All the while within the tower the Voice waits for Misery, encased inside a large "bubble" of green energy and surrounded by heavily-armed guardians: "..well? what is it you seek?" he asks.
(in this segment Voice and Misery are conversing in the tower while the Earth is on the brink of all-out war - anyone can join at any time (goodness knows Arbiter could use the help *smiles*) but please be sure NOT to have yourself magically appear in the tower or something (unless you have a GOOD reason) - Voice)
A giant eagle flew over the city, and from its back jumped a girl. Amnesty stood silent, analyzing the situation on earth. "What a mess... time to create order... but where to start, I'm don't know much about this place... which side to choose..."
Misery's voice projects to both Arbiter and the new arrival amidst the chaos Voice's invasion is causing "..you should see it, it is beautiful.. such hate.. such anger.." - her voice then trails off.
Amnesty stood in the middel of chaos. "Such chaos, what a waste of energy... why would anyone deliberately create something so awful... This has to be stopped.. and I plan to do so myself..." Amnesty started strolling through the city, slowly moving to the center of the chaos... slowly moving to her destination..
The ship above the city continues to beam down more soldiers as the squadrons continue to scatter the crowds into managable groups - a child flees and falls to the ground, clutching a doll as she cries out: lost in the confusion as sirens begin to blare across the sky, across the world similiar events start to take place.
Arbiter flies into the city and begins to slay the followers of the Voice. His black and white sword gleams with crimson and blurs into an arc of death. With careful presicion, citizens are spared as the legions of the Voice fall.
For every soldier that falls more begin to materialise as the ship beams more in - however as Arbiter continues to attack a beam of energy erupts from the ship and heads straight towards him, carving through a building in the process like a razor's edge, it is rather eerie to see such destruction: meanwhile across the world another tower starts to beam down from the skies, right next to the United Nations headquarters.
Noticing the cry of the lone girl a hooded figure sweeps out of nowhere, grabbing the child and leaping across the crowds - "..hold onto me child and don't look back.." she notes as she heads towards a sheltered area: "..blasted fates, what cursed world have you brought me to this day?" she thought to herself.
With razor-sharp reflexes, Arbiter intercepts and absorbs the beam with his blade; the impact blasts him back several feet, but he manages to hold his ground. Swinging his sword in a loop, he sends it back at the ship with twice the power.
Unseen by all, a cloaked figure glides amidst the chaos like a phantom. A mask obstructs his face; one half pitch black, the other half glowing white.
While observing the chaos, Amnesty sees a hooded figure, saving a child. She decides to follow the figure, thinking she might know what's going on. Blasting away all the soldiers of the Voice, she follows the hooded figure.. wondering where it is going.
Red puts the girl down next to a sheltered area and turns round, noticing Arbiter's attack her eyes narrow "..damned fool will destroy us all if he continues this way.." -she looks to the girl again and pauses, thinking for a moment "..when this over you will come with me, this world is no place for children..". After this she turns quickly and points her axe towards Amnesty, noticing the figure approaching: "..speak quickly stranger, are you allied with these creatures?" - she motions slightly towards a few slain soldiers.
Amnesty shows a faint smile. "Perhaps I am... I don't really know yet... But for now, I think I will oppose these "creatures" you speak off... But this isn't the place or the time to talk. It seems to me there are more important things to do for now..."
A portal opens in the sky and a dozen or so dragons fly out, behind him emerges a dark figure with draconic wings spread wide: a large ebony-blade in one hand - he looks down at a group of soldiers and points towards them, a wave of dark energy erupts from the blade and hits the ground: sending the soldiers flying as he snorts slightly "..I swear, I leave you people alone for one second and you go and start an apocalypse.."
Amnesty turns around watching the dragons. "It seems the reinforcements have arrived... Well, might as well call my own reinforcements..." Suddenly, a gaint eagle, wolf, snake and panther appear out of nowhere. "Well, you know what to do, so do it!" Then Amnesty turns back to the hooded figure, awaiting an answer.
As Arbiter's attack hits the ship it begins to shudder and spew forth black smoke as it starts to descend towards the city below, meanwhile pockets of soldiers continue running riot as they begin guerrilla warfare on the street - meanwhile half a world away yet another tower begins to descend, this time next to the Houses Of Parliament (in case your wondering that's basically the headquarters of the British government).
Red simply looks at Amnesty and motions to the girl "I care not what you do, I intend to fight for the children - like this girl.. you can either aid me or you can fight a senseless war with these primitives.." - with that he turns to the girl again and speaks "..you'll be safe here: don't move until I return.." - she then runs out into the streets again, swiftly slaying a few soldiers: moving with great speed despite her relatively small size.
Amnesty sighs. Still doubtfull about what to do, she draws her swords and follows the stranger, slaying the soldiers that cross her path... "I will aid you, for now..."
Misery's image appears over the tower, it is akin to a phantom and unable to directly assault the assembled heroes but it speaks out to them with burning yellow eyes as she spreads her arms either side, darkening the skies around the tower "..hear me, mortals - I have been in talks with the great Voice, he has informed me of your future and although I can not speak on his behalf I urge you to lay down your arms.. you can not win.."
Inferno blinks as he lands on a rooftop, a few twilight-dragons fly in towards Amnesty and Red's location <<do not fear, we are here to aid..>> they speak out with their minds.. meanwhile Inferno continues to stare at Misery's rather dramatic gesture "..friend of yours Arbiter?" he calls out.
"Hardly." responds Arbiter, speaking into Inferno's mind.
Amnesty stares to the gesture standing on the tower. "Let's go stranger", she yells to Red. "Travelling by dragon would be faster than walking! And it seems to me, we don't have any time to lose" Amnesty looks at the dragon. "Can you bring us to the places where chaos is at its largest?" she asks the dragon.
Arbiter draws in the power of Order, and uses it to hold the ship in midair, rendering it unable to fall. It hovers there, casting it's shadow over the entire city, much like an eclipse. He turns his head and sees Red, Amnesty, and the small group of Twilight Dragons.
The cloaked figure continues walking unseen amidst the chaos. He waves the sleeve of his cloak at a random soldier. At once, the soldier's eyes began to glow; one pure white, the other pitch black. The soldier begins to lose control, battling in a wild, uncontrollable frenzy, slaying soldiers and civilians alike.
Inferno watched the scene unfold further and simply narrowed his eyes as he looked around "..this world is doomed.." he says quietly, then shakes his head and thinks "..no.. this tyrant has already taken one world.. he can't take this one too.. not now.." meanwhile one of the dragons replies to Amnesty "we are of the Twilight Dragonflight: we can go wherever you need us to be.."
Amnesty nods slightly. "Allright, I'm going, stranger, you can either come with me, or choose your own way from her on forward."
The beserk soldier notices Red, Amnesty, and the Twilight Dragons. He runs over, now a near unstobbable force.
Misery notices an unfamiliar figure and projects her thoughts towards him "..you do not belong here stranger, what is the purpose of your visit?" - she watches the soldier running riot "..other than to kill and maim, which is all very fine.. I just want reassurance their shall be people left behind to suffer.. the tears of orphans and the despair of widows.."
"I am Eclipse." responded Eclipse. "Wherever there is fear, sadness, or despair, I turn it into hate. Wherever hate exists in the universe, I am there, too." Eclipse pauses. "I sense your power...Misery...a fitting title for one who creates that very same atmosphere."
Misery thinks for a moment, "..you are not one of us, Eclipse.. yet a part of you is.. a paradox indeed: yet I welcome you nevertheless - I have waited a long time to see Earth fall into despair.. yet even now they cling to hope.. this troubles me.. for as long as one man feels hope my very existence is in jeopardy.."
"Hope? Even their hope will be eclipsed by hate. I shall break them. They will give in to their anamalistic instincts. They will burn and slaughter each other in cold blood."
Misery narrows her eyes "the dead do not suffer - death is the great comforter: the end of misery.."
"That is true, but some must die. Only the strong survive in an ideal world filled with hate."
Suddenly a deafening roar echoes across the city as the tower shakes violently, the force-field breaking violently in a shockwave that sends many flying backwards - as this occurs a large metal door bursts open and a blinding light emits from the structure as a Voice yells across the battlefield "..ENOUGH! I'm through playing games with you.. I'm not some puppet on a string, I am the Voice Of Man - you wish to see your future? very well.. I shall take you there.. to MY world.." -the light starts to grow brighter as the energy builds up.
Misery looks to Eclipse, still narrowing her eyes - she doesn't trust this death-dealing entity.. yet she relates to his darkness.. it confuses her and she doesn't like it, not one bit.. she is somewhat relieved when the Voice breaks the conversation and looks towards the tower: "..isn't it ironic that whenever men play God they almost always make a Devil?"
Amnesty turns around and turns the berserk soldier into stone. She jumps on the Twilight Dragon and waits for Red to react.
Inferno flies down next to Amnesty and looks to her "impressive sorcery, girl - however.." - he looks towards the tower - "..it would seem we have bigger problems, tell me.. can you manipulate time?": as he speaks he pats the snout of the Twilight Dragon almost without thinking, the dragon purrs oddly like a kitten at his touch.
"I can only travel through time myself, so I won't be much of a help saving this city" Amnesty replies. "However, we are not too late to stop the machine yet..."
Inferno nods and spreads his wings "then we should depart - stab the beast in the heart, as they say.." - he looks to the dragon, motioning to Amnesty "..take care of her, Soasa.." - the dragon nods slightly "..be careful, Inferno.." - Inferno simply smirks "..if I was careful I wouldn't of come to this forsaken realm" - he then flies towards the machine.
Amnesty turns towards Red. "I'll follow him, you can take one of te toher dragons and go your own way, or you can come and help us, that decision is yours to take..." And she then flies after Inferno, casting spells to the soldiers that are running around in the streets.
Arbiter joins Inferno in flight. "Nice to see you again, old friend."
Amnesty catches up to Inferno and Arbiter and flies next to them. "Anyone has an idea?"
Inferno smirks slightly at Arbiter "I believe I said it before Arbiter, if anyone is to destroy this universe it shall be me.." - he then smiles at Amnesty "..I say we fire into the machine, let us see how the Voice of Man does against true power.." -he clutches his sword, which emits dark energy, his eyes flashing slightly-
"Very well... I hope we have enough power to prevent this disaster..." And suddenly two swords appear out of nowhere in her hands, one black, one white... and both faintly glowing green.
Inferno chuckles "..we'll see.." - he unleashes a wave of energy from his sword that resembles lightning, only as black as night and crackling with power: as it tears towards the machine Inferno's eyes glow brightly and his body begins to darken as it merges with the shadows around himself "..light and dark, good and evil, what are they but lies in the end? Twilight is the only truth in this universe.. in the end men do not wage war for good or evil, they wage war for power..so here is my gift to you Voice.. power.."
Misery frowns and projects her thoughts into Inferno, Arbiter and Amnesty - speaking to each one separately, causing flashbacks to occur in the process:
"you are a fool, your Balance is a lie and only the flies will mourn you.." she speaks to Arbiter.
"you seek power? hehehehe.. you're own parents abandoned you.. you're worthless.. you may as well of never been born.." she speaks to Inferno.
Finally she projects her voice into Amnesty's mind "..I shall take pleasure in tearing your world apart, mark my words, you can't protect them forever.."
Amnesty closes her eyes and takes a deep breath... She then raises her swords and combines them into one, from which she fires a grey-and-green ball of energy towards Voice's machine. "Don't listen to the voice in your heads, it is but a mere illusion."
Inferno starts to waver despite Amnesty's words, Misery has certainly found a weak-spot - he drops his sword and clutches his head as he growls "..no.. it's not true.. they loved me.. they.." - the shadows start to spark around him as he struggles with his emotions.
Misery projects her thoughts further into Inferno's mind as she senses weakness, like a shark that has caught the scent of blood in the water - she homes in with firghtening efficiency "..poor child, so alone.. so afraid.. such a pity you couldn't save them.. all those lives.. tell me Prince, how does it feel to be hated by everyone you ever loved?"
Amnesty turns towards Inferno "Perhaps what she saying is true, I know I won't be able to keep protecting my people, but I will try to do so as long as I can, Inferno, you just have to make the best out of things, the past can't be changed, but you have to shape your own future." And she sends another grey-green ball towards a few soldiers on the ground.
Misery hovers behind Inferno, though only visible to Amnesty - she is silent but the look she gives says it all: it is a dangerous stare.. she knows Amnesty is reaching out, offering a kind of hope, she spreads her arms out much as she did during her manifestation over the tower - trying to cloak Inferno's mind with her presence.
"Fight it Inferno. I know I don't know you as good as her, but I'm sure you are powerfull enough to fight these illusions... You just have to try!" Amnesty looks over her shoulder and angrily stares back at Misery. "Leave now" she whispers.. not being heard by anyone except herself and Misery.
"Don't listen!" snarls Arbiter. He begins to let loose the power of Order, in an attempt to negate Misery's power (negating emotion is a function of Order).
Misery lets out a hiss akin to a snake that has been startled and recoils, her features warping for a moment into a more demonic form - "..I won't let you fools do this! this war can't end.. not now.. not ever.. I have waited too long for this moment.. the Voice will provide me with an entire universe to feast on.. I won't let you get in the way.." - she tries to envelop Inferno in crimson energy (symbolising despair, kind of a localised Misery-Zone : also I'll apologise to Voice if it seems like I'm trying to usurp him as the main threat, as it isn't my intent - she's just very opportunistic)
Inferno sheds a few tears as he fights back his emotions: rage, confusion, fear.. the emotions that come with abandonment and generations of mistrust.. his eyes flash as he opens them and growls "..you're not real, you're just a concept.. an illusion.. I beat Arodnap.. I can beat you too.." - he concentrates and unleashes his energy, which should shatter the energy surrounding him (especially with the help of Arbiter and Amnesty) Amnesty splits her sword up in the two original swords, and she points the white one at Misery and shoots out a beam of white light, slightly slowing Misery. "You'll get your chance Misery, just not now"
Meanwhile the tower shakes and sparks slightly as the energy attacks hit it but it continues to emit the blinding light, the Voice yells out once again "..what was that you said, that you would see my Voice silence under a sea of chaos? well now the Voice of Man shall echo across every time-line.. across every world.. I will be the past, future and present.. the glory of the Golden Empire shall finally have it's reward.."
Amnesty fires a few more energy balls at Voice's machine. "Inferno, Arbiter, we have to destroy that machine... And fast!"
"We must merge our powers." Arbiter states. He begins to charge up an intense blast of energy, pulsating with the power of Chaos, yet contained within the power of Order. "It's time to silence the Voice for good."
Inferno growls "..well? be done with it!" - he unleashes energy from his arms that flies towards the machine, again resembling black lightning.
Amnesty fuses her swords into one again, and fires a powerfull dark green beam from her sword, right at Voice's machine.
Misery grows more demonic as she hovers in place, her fingers morphing into talons and her eyes glowing ever brighter as she sheds her robe to reveal a disturbing skeleton that seems to be ablaze with flame - though like everything Misery does this is more symbolic than anything else.. the tone of her voice is one of anger but also desperation, she knows she's losing control of the situation.. and she doesn't like it.. "..they never loved you! no one will ever love you!" "you'll fail you're not strong enough! another world lost to the precious Balance" "..I'll break you.. break you all.."
Amnesty starts to laugh. "All empty threats... And all lies... I will not fall for those, and I hope may new-found friends won't either"
Inferno simply keeps his energy channelled as he speaks out, "..you're right demon, they never loved me.. but I loved them.. I lost one family.. three years ago I also lost a friend, his world is gone and few even remember him but I do and I'm not going to lose another, if I have to tear the universe apart, then so be it.."
"You'll fail." Arbiter states to Misery. He fires his beam of energy, which blasts through the machine.
Suddenly, a cloud of black mist appears before them, twisting into the shape of a cloaked figure.
"You...!" Arbiter begins in shock.
Eclipse eyes them all, speaking no words. He then raises his arms; thousands of needle-like objects appear in thin air, much like a swarm of black insects, and all pointed at Arbiter, Amnesty, and Inferno.
The structure shatters as the assaults mount up and the Voice yells out "..no matter what happens, I have won.. the world will hate you.. it will fear you.. you brought this tragedy upon them.. for the glory of Man.. for the Golden Empire.." - suddenly the structure explodes violently, sending a shockwave across the city.
Amnesty looks at the destroyed machine. "Well, that's one problem less..." She then turns towards Eclipse. "We haven't met before, so tell me, who are you, and why are you here?"
Misery looks to Eclipse and motions towards the destroyed structure "..deal with them however you desire, Eclipse, I must check on the Voice.. if he has survived I would have words with him.." she notes - then hurls herself towards the last known location of the Voice.
Amnesty smiles faintly. "And that's yet another problem solved... for now..." She turns towards the stranger again. "So, Eclipse, is it? I don't know why you are here, but I suggest you leave.." And suddenly a giant eagle and giant snake appear behind her. "Or face the consequences..."
Inferno notices Eclipse and flies straight towards him, charging himself with the full power of Twilight - "Arbiter! get the girl and take her to safety -" he then turns to Eclipse "well? come on then! finish it!"
Meanwhile the Voice lays in the wreckage of his once proud fortress, barely able to keep himself awake he closes his eyes and concentrates "..it can't end this way.. I have lost too much.. I can't lose now.. not like this.."
Misery lands next to Voice and reshapes herself into the more familiar robed figure, kneeling down beside Voice she extends a hand "..take my hand, Voice.. you have come too far to die on the streets like a common man.. destiny has greater plans for one such as you.."
The Voice blinks slightly and reaches out to Misery, having little choice as he feels himself growing weaker "..who are you?" he asks, taking her hand.
Misery simply looks to Voice and states "..a friend" - she then concentrates, vanishing from the area and taking Voice with her.
"But, Inferno-" Arbiter begins, then stops. He grabs Amnesty's arm and teleports with her not a split second to soon- the barrage of needles begins to launch itself at Inferno, tearing right through him, causing immense, blinding pain, yet leaving no visible signs of maiming. With each needle comes another jolt of pain created with the intent to break the mind and will of it's victim. (It's up to Inferno how his character reacts to this excruciating pain.)
Inferno closes his eyes and continues flying towards Eclipse despite the pain, his mind plays a now familiar scene to him as he tries to block some of the pain - the voice of his father, the proud Equinox of Avalon "..you are weak, a foundling.. you will never be a King.." - he opens his eyes, ablaze with incredible energy as he races towards Eclipse, envisioning for a brief moment Equinox in the place of the entity "..DIE!" -he attempts to punch Eclipse, ablaze with energy: even though he knows it is futile.
Eclipse stops the barrage, and takes the punch, yet as Inferno attacks him, it seems as though he merely absorbed Inferno's energy from the punch. "Aha... I see...so strong within your hate. Feed off of it; it is a source of unbelievable power. It is the only thing that will matter...in the end..." Eclipse fades out of view, with only a near- emotionless laugh echoing in the air- "hee...hee...hee..."
Arbiter and Amnesty reappear some distance away, yet close enough to see Eclipse confronting Inferno.
Inferno twitches, he has a look in his eye that Arbiter has seen before - for a moment he looks ready to explode, quite literally.. clutching his fists tightly.. however he simply can't take it any more - "..I should of wiped this universe out when I had the chance.." he growls to himself before he simply switches off, falling to the ground below.
Amnesty sighs and looks at Arbiter. "What now? It seems to be over.. for now at least.."
The Voice vanishes alongside Misery (wherever she may be heading) - with his depature vortexes burst open across the world as the forces of the Golden Empire slowly return to their native reality, leaving behind a devastated world: cities lay in near-ruin, people ran riot and world governments still sat on the verge of an all-out missile assault - it was like the Voice has said.. the world was now a very dangerous place, full of hatred, fear and confusion.. his words echo slightly in the mind "..you brought this tragedy to them.." - and then comes the deadly silence that comes with an uneasy victory.
(this section is inside the tower itself and involves Voice and Misery - figured putting it under its own little heading would make things a little easier on the brain and eyes - Voice)
Inside the tower Misery looked to the Voice, she didn't convey surpise at the guards or the "bubble" - she simply looked to the stranger and spoke directly to him "I can feel the suffering of entire nations, growing worse with every passing moment - I hear children cry and mothers weep, I can feel hatred mixed with anger as men begin to raise their armies and bicker amongst themselves: I can hear desperate prayers and bitter curses as some look beyond this world for answers or salvation.. your arrival has caused much misery.."
The Voice simply stares back at Misery, keeping the energy-field up as his guards kept a close eye on this strange figure - "are you here to preach to me, woman? I have enslaved this world before - if need be I will do it again.. besides this is the price they pay for harboring enemies of the Golden Empire: a year ago these "heroes" humiliated me, their suffering has only just began.." he motions slightly to one of his guards, who proceeds to point a large energy-rifle towards Misery "..do you wish to share their fate?".
Misery stood perfectly still as the guard pointed the energy-rifle at her, then looked to the Voice again - "on the contrary, I believe what you have done is to be praised - you are a ruler, it is your right to exact vengeance as you see fit: forgive me if I appeared to be preaching, I didn't come here to offend you.. I came here to help you.."
The Voice stared for a moment, motioning to the guard - who lowers the energy-rifle: "..you're either mad or foolish and I don't think I can trust you.. yet I'm curious, how exactly do you intend to help me? I am the Voice of Man.. I have subjugated entire star-systems.. what do you seek to offer me?"
Misery waits a few moments then replies: "I offer you this.." - she motions towards a nearby guard and watches as they begin to clutch at their head and collapse to their knees "..the power to break their spirits.." - she then undoes the motion and lets the guard stagger back to their feet, no doubt confused and maybe even a little sick (..I'm assuming the guards are normal humans, if not this may not make sense)
The Voice tilts his head slightly as he watches this, one of the guards prepares to fire on Misery but the Voice motions him to stop - after the display of power the Voice speaks out, "..very well, you have convinced me.." -he frowns slightly as alarms begin to blare- "..one of my ship's has been destroyed and sensors are picking up a mass influx of inter-dimensional beings and resistance, no doubt a side-effect of the vortex travel.." (ooc: figured this may explain why we have characters from other dimensions on Earth, feel free to ignore this if you disagree).
He pauses for a moment and looks to Misery, "..deal with them, I have to continue the occupation process - across the world strongholds like this are being placed but it takes time to transport such things across space.. let alone time.. I need you to keep these "heroes" occupied.."
Misery nods slightly and bows slightly to the Voice "as you wish.." -she then vanishes, however a part of her remains as her disembodied voice speaks directly into Voice's mind "..however if I may be so bold may I ask you a small favor?"
The Voice frowns slightly "..outside this war is turning into anarchy and you ask me for favors? no - I'll keep you alive and you'll do as I say in return.. enough talking: I have a universe to conquer.." - with that Voice concentrates and the tower begins to shake violently as lights and sirens blare loudly.
Misery hovers in place and stares at Voice "..have it you're way.." - she then simply stays in place, silent as a spectre.
(this is for events that happen directly after War-Zone, edits below here will deal with the basic after-effects of the invasion..)
Amnesty looks around. "I believe we still have work to do... so where to start Arbiter?"
"I do not know... I'm usually so sure of these things, but now..." Arbiter stops to think. "As long as the Voice is alive, nobody is safe from his despotism. Eclipse has returned, and that...well, is bad. And then there is the other, the demon in the red cloak..."
Inferno crashes to the ground and several dragons swoop down, landing beside him - one of them lifts him carefully onto its back as it stretches it's wings, preparing for flight: the dragons conversing with one another in a series of low rumbling and hissing.
Arbiter looks over at Inferno. "...crazy fool, what was he thinking?" he mutters in a slightly awed tone.
The dragons stop conversing as one of them takes flight with Inferno, opening a portal to some distant realm - such is the way of dragons.. the others pad towards Arbiter and Amnesty.
"The demon in the red cloak... It is called Misery, and it's a major problem" Amnesty looks at the dragons. "I wonder what they want of us..."
"I wonder..." mutters Arbiter.
The dragons stop and stare at Arbiter and Amnesty "Inferno lays in troubled slumber, as he sleeps we shall purge this world of the influences of this war.." - they stay motionless as they continue "..you can stay or leave but once to purging has began it will not stop, this is the only way to stop the madness you have brought upon the world"
Meanwhile Red reappears, followed by a small group of children who have either been orphaned or separated from their families during the fighting - she frowns slightly at the dragons "..more servants of the Voice? or are these things another of that witch's illusions?" (..man I missed a lot, ah well.. I'm back..)
Amnesty looks at Red. "Well well, look who's here... Saved some children haven't you? Don't worry.. these dragons are on our side... sort of" She turns towards the dragons, "And how do you think to clean this mess?" (yes, the story did indeed progres quite fast)
Red frowns "watch your tongue.." - she looks to the children and shrugs slightly "..while you and the others engaged in mindless violence I opted for preserving the future of humanity, though their is little chance of a peaceful future for them on this world - which is why I shall be taking them with me to my world, once this senseless war is finished.." - she just gives the dragons a very unkind look (Red's from a fairytale based world, so.. yeah, she doesn't have good memories of dragons)
Suddenly, a shadow begins to form near where they are standing; it morphs into the form of Eclipse.
In a split second, Arbiter draws his thirteen foot blade and slashes at Eclipse, but the sword passes through him, causing no damage.
"Eclipse!" Arbiter yells. "I don't know why you are here, but I will end you now."
"You...will end me now?" Eclipse repeated. "How...amusing... coming from such an insignificant flea like you."
Meanwhile, far away from the events of the mainstream world, Misery sends the Voice back to his own reality and takes him to a place of safety (I'll leave it to Voice on what happens to his character after this point)
"I'm sorry, Red, you did good work." Amnesty turns towards Eclipse and draws her swords. "But this is not a friend."
"Not a friend, but all of you have known me for a long time." responds Eclipse in an icy tone of voice.
"We don't care for your word games." said Arbiter, drawing his greatsword, Laevateinn, and pointing it at Eclipse.
"I have always been there, lingering on the fringes of your conscious... whenever you have felt pain, mistrust, despair, or have been wronged... I was there, urging you to give in to the darkness..."
"May be true, but I have to urge you to leave now... this isn't the place and time for a confrontation of sorts..." Amnesty creates a small green ball of energy in her hand, ready to fight if necessary.
Suddenly Misery appears next to Eclipse "..is that so? you make it sound as if you are somehow the cause of all mankind's suffering.. yet have you ever wondered what drew you to become what you are this day? it was despair.. hopelessness.. it was the same force that creates all darkness.. hate is strong.. yet despair is something else entirely.."
Amnesty looks at Misery. "Back again? Couldn't you just have stayed away?"
Misery looks to Amnesty "I am everywhere at once, omnipresent - I never leave.. how could I leave? I am a part of the universe.. whether or not you approve is of no concern in the end.."
Red looks at the two figures and simply says "..two sides of the same coin: what does it matter in the end? this universe would be better off without either of you.."
Amnesty looks at Red. "Well, the same goes for you then..." She looks around... "Well, I'm done talking," and she starts walking towards the dragons.
Red looks to Amnesty "I never knew you valued hatred and misery so much.. or I would of slain you on the spot" - she then turns her attention back to the two figures (Misery and Eclipse)
Misery simply laughs a little at Red "that girl values nothing except the protection of her realm: a realm I shall take delight in tearing apart.. just as I did yours.. tell me Red, how is Jack these days?"
Red's eyes grow wide at Misery's words and she races forward, swinging her axe towards the demon "..DIE!"
Misery envelops Red in a crimson energy-field that twists and warps her thoughts "..another one ruled by emotions it seems.. no matter" - she pulls Red towards herself and begins to envelop her inside her cloak.
Red struggles against the energy and fights Misery's illusions, "..some how..some way.. you will die.." she spits, continuing her struggle even as she is attacked by the cloak.
Misery envelops Red entirely into the cloak and then stares out at the others, noting darkly "perhaps: but it shall not be by your hand" (ooc: Red's not dead - she's been transported to a Misery-Zone (if you want Red it could be an interesting way to explain our fight in the other User Battles) )
Eclipse stands there silently like a stone-cold statue, watching the scene unfold. "A weak-hearted one..." he said, describing Red. He turns to Amnesty and Arbiter. "Despair...is yet another force that drives hatred. To become hatred is the fate of all emotion...and it will be your fate."
Misery simply hovers in place, "..the enemy of my enemy is my friend: regardless of our differences.. very well Eclipse, I shall not argue with you over philosophical puzzles - at least not here.. I have already exhausted enough of my energies on this world.. in truth I returned to inform these beings that their victory will be in vain, the Voice has been returned to his rightful place in space and time - as for me.." - her eyes glow brightly "..I have other matters to attend to: try not to destroy the entire planet now.. humanity has a certain quality about them I find amusing.. for now at least.." with that Misery vanishes.
Amnesty turns around. "Well, Eclipse, what is it you want of us?"
The dragons look to Eclipse and note "he is born of darkest night and blackest thought - we've felt such power before.. from one of our own.. thankfully she now lays forgotten in the pits of Tartarus.."
"I wished to see how strong you were." said Eclipse. "Creatures of the twilight...they are interesting."
The dragons look to the sky, then to one another - they then speak to everyone present "..we can not force you to leave but in order to purge this world we shall annex it into the Twilight Realm - it is a temporary solution but under our care humanity may have the chance to recover, that is unless one of you can offer a better alternative.."
"Hey!" Arbiter exclaims. "Eclipse is standing here, and you all are chatting!" He points his blade at Eclipse once more with renewed vigor.
"Still your blade, fool." said Eclipse. "The time will come." Eclipse begins to fade. "When the time comes...there will be nothing left to turn to but the darkest natures of your hearts." He disappears entirely.
Arbiter slowly lowers his greatsword.
Amnesty looks at the dragons... "do as you wish, but don't involve me into it... I don't want humans wandering around in my Twilight..."
The dragons look to Amnesty "your Twilight? you may be Princess of your realm but you are not part of our Twilight.. yours is different, though it may overlap at times.. you need not concern yourself with the matters of our world.. your realm is safe enough"
Amnesty nods. "Very well then, I'll take my leave." And she dissapears in a green flash.
"I have business to take care of." said Arbiter. He vanishes into the network of energy that fabricates the universe and disappears.
A large shadow formed next to where Arbiter was standing, and two figures appeared. "Damn it..." Tulwar said with a sigh, "Looks like we just missed the action Viro... at least we were able to stop the humans who wanted to resort to nuclear war."
Viro growled in slight annoyance and wiped his claws clean of blood. "Well, next time we won't have to worry about that."