Slices of Life

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Envius
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Slices of Life

Post by Envius » November 30th, 2014, 9:42 pm

Karuvius
Chronomancers have been looked to throughout the years for miracles of turning back time to nostalgic events in one's life. Was it possible? In Karuvius' case, yes, because he was the oldest standing chronomancer.

Children, and
their children - for everyone was a child to Karuvius - often came to him asking for a chance to relive their first kiss, their happiest memories, or a crucial time in their lives. So many times, Karuvius had to turn those children down, and watch them sulk away without having so much as glimpsed into the records of their lives. Was Karuvius to blame? He first tested that very process on himself. He returned to the day he met his teacher. In doing so, he nearly met a fate worse than death.

Now, Karuvius was a teacher. He instructed the children of his time in the ways of chronomancy. There weren't many who could pick up on the art, and there were even less who could even begin to practice it. To become a chronomancer required years of diligent practice and care. Time was a fragile thing, and one wrong move could mean the end for all when delving into chronomancy.
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Hemo
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Re: Slices of Life

Post by Hemo » December 1st, 2014, 7:23 am

love it! would like to read more! I'm going to be Chronomancer myself :ok:
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made by wangqr from deviantart
Envius
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Re: Slices of Life

Post by Envius » December 1st, 2014, 10:20 pm

Hemo wrote:love it! would like to read more! I'm going to be Chronomancer myself :ok:
Thanks. I'll try to add at least one or two slices of life per week, so maybe Karuvius will appear in some of them!

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Fire & Ice
Fraternal twins Rey and Teeka ( :kis: :hmm: ) were like order and chaos, light and dark, yin and yang, day and night.

Ultimately, they were fire and ice. Rey, the younger sibling, was a pyromancer. He was almost never seen without the company of his older sister, Teeka, a cryomancer. While one could simply describe these two spell users as
potato-potahto, the fact remained that they were each others' closest allies ( :no1: ) through thick and thin. Most of the time Teeka ( :gg: ) got into ridiculous fights, bets, and oddball contests with other adventurers or townsfolk; and Rey ( :an: ) had to bail her out. Teeka saw herself as the more responsible ( :ok: ) sibling, as she was the eldest of the two, but Rey ( :wah: ), in truth, was the one everybody went to if they wanted to talk. He was calm, mature, and cunning. Teeka was loud, childish, and reckless. But she was the tougher sibling, so her brashness wasn't entirely without reason. When the going got tough, Teeka boldly fought in the face of assault with only her brother's well-being (and her own pride) to fuel her aggression.

Today, Rey and Teeka were paying a visit to the village. The villagers who knew them had to warn the others, because Rey and Teeka (mostly Teeka) always left an aftermath of some kind at every place they visited.
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Re: Slices of Life

Post by Envius » December 2nd, 2014, 2:57 am

Mender by Day, Witness by Nightfall
And he's heard of the fraternal twins and chronomancer, too. After all, he was born and raised in the village, and they've come around here for as long as he remembered.

He was Rockell, a squire and aspiring trade-crafter. He was good at caring for outfits, armor, weaponry, and tools. You name it, Rockell could fix it. He wasn't a big name yet, but soon he'd have adventurers from all across the world seeking him out for his services in this large, but quaint village. There was nothing in the whole world like a squire who knew his stuff. The very thought of leaving the village and putting himself in danger like the rest of those crazy adventurers was balking. But whenever he repaired someone's equipment, he felt like he, in a sense, was fighting right there alongside them.


Rockell spied Rey and Teeka marching into the village from the west, the glow of the red sunset at their backs. He was sitting on a comfortable cushioned stool under the wooden covering of the blacksmiths' shop, with billows and anvils blowing and clanging behind him. He'd sewed up a local boy's torn shirt, and he was just putting on the finishing touches. Free of charge.

"Is that them two wizards from a few days ago?!" the burly blacksmith hollered over the roar of the forges.

"Sure is," Rockell called back. "I wonder what tavern they'll tear up tonight!"

"Bah! I don't care where they go, 's long as they don't come over here!"

Rockell inspected his work on the little shirt he'd spent the last half hour fixing up. Satisfied, he packed up his sewing kit and draped the shirt over his forearm.

"Thanks for letting me use your chair!" Rockell said.

"Anytime, kid! Come back whenever!"

"Got it! See ya!"

Keeping Rey and Teeka in his sights, Rockell hurried to the home of the boy to whom the shirt belonged and dropped the shirt off. He then followed Rey and Teeka clear across the village, all the way to one of the taverns in the Outskirts.

The Outskirts attracted the rougher, tougher breed of adventurer. Sometimes even con artists.

Rockell could hear the twins carrying on an argument as they were walking into the tavern.

"I told you not to go to that forest," Rey was saying patiently.

"Ugh, stop lecturing me, Rey!" Teeka said. "I get it, I get it, I screwed up! Could you just drop it?"

"Oh, boy," Rockell found himself muttering. He remembered something important about this tavern. Somebody got skewered on a sword here the other night. It happened when two adventurers, who hated each others' guts, ran into each other. One of them said the wrong thing to the other, and blades started whistling as blood painted the floor. Rockell heard they couldn't get the stains off the floorboards completely. Rockell entered the Outskirts tavern, already sensing the reaper's approach.

Immediately, he spotted the twins bickering in front of the annoyed tavernkeep as they held up a line of six cranky drunks.

One of the drunks in the line said, "Get yer arses moving!"

Rockell knew enough about the twins that the thing he'd expected to happen, happened. Every fight started with Teeka.

Rey's sister broke off in mid-argument to turn and face the drunk near the back of the line. Despite her brother's pleas, she went off on the drunk.

"
Really, now, who on earth do you think you are, talking to me that way?! You're just a low-life drunk who has no respect for anyone – including yourself!"

"Yer holdin' up the line!" a different drunk said.

Rey tried to get his sister's attention away from the peanut gallery, but she'd gone into full battle mode. Rockell almost shed a tear watching this scene play out, because he liked these two so much.

"Well, then," Teeka said snidely, "it looks like you'll have to sober up again, won't you?"

"Move—the—line!"

"Sister, please," Rey persisted, resting a gentle hand on Teeka's shoulder. She elbowed his arm away.

"No, Rey, I'm going to teach these drunks how to keep their mouths shut. We deserve better than this."

"Well, we
are holding up the line..."

The agitated tavernkeep grunted. "Am I going to have to call the bouncer?"

"No, that'll be quite all right," Teeka said, completely missing the inflection, "I'll deal with them myself."

Rockell couldn't let this happen again. Not twice in the same village, in the same week. He smiled helplessly, knowing that, with what he was about to do, he was either going to save happy hour or get his butt kicked. Just as Teeka was getting ready to frost over the whole tavern, Rockell walked into the middle of everything as casually as he could and said, "Teeka! How've you been, girl?! You look great!"

Rey cast a warning look at Rockell. He knew the danger of getting in Teeka's way better than anyone.

"Watch out, Rockell," Teeka growled, "I have some butts to kick."

Rockell was standing directly in front of Teeka now, blocking her view of the raving drunks behind him. "Did I ever tell you how pretty your eyes are? They're just as blue as the ice you make."

Teeka's eye twitched. "Are you drunk, too?"

"You're in a
tavern," Rockell pointed out, "we're all a little drunk here."

"What's the matter wizard? Can't fight?" taunted the drunk behind Rockell. Rockell muttered
Idiot and whistled loudly to the tavernkeep.

"Yo! Get my friends back there your coldest and finest, could you? It's on me. Right fellas?" Rockell asked the drunks behind him. The drunks backed off and, nodding appreciatively, wandered back to their seats amidst the rest of the tavern-goers, who looked disappointed that there wasn't going to be a fight.

"Pah!" exclaimed Teeka. "Rockell. Why would you
ever spend money on morons like them?"

Rockell looked at Rey and Teeka for a moment. He avoided Teeka's question, much to her annoyance, and instead asked them, "What brought you guys back to the village?"

Rey said, "We were hoping to speak to Karuvius."

"The old timekeeper?" Rockell said, raising his eyebrows. "Think I can ask why?"

"Chronomancer," Teeka corrected. "Not timekeeper.
Really..."

"I wanted to try talking him into letting me go back in time to... do... something," said Rey.

"Why don't you just tell him?" Teeka said, eyeing Rockell critically. "It's not like he's our enemy. He'll just think you're crazy."

Rockell had to laugh. "I was born crazy, and I've seen
heinous. Trust me, I won't laugh at you, man."

Rey hesitated. "When my sister and I were kids, our house caught on fire."

"Because of you," Teeka muttered audibly, tossing her gaze off in the direction of the drunks she was about to fight earlier. They didn't notice her looking at them.

While the trio bantered, the tavernkeep had his bouncer take the drinks Rockell ordered to the hecklers at their table, and Rockell paid him.

Rey scratched the back of his head. "I... eh-heh... wasn't the best wizard back then. Sorry."

Teeka hijacked Rey's story. "I would have put the fire out, but our father came back from the dead and rescued us.
Rey thinks it wasn't our father. He thinks it was his older self who saved us."

Teeka's tone perturbed Rey. Rockell had to chew it over to make sure he understood what he was hearing.

"So, you," Rockell said, pointing at Rey, "want to go back in time to save your child self and Teeka... from a fire you started when you were children."

"...And our mom," Rey added sullenly. "She didn't perish, but... her burns... she can't live on her own anymore. If I can just go back and get her out of that house along with us..."

For a moment, Teeka softened. "Stop, Rey. It's fifteen years' history long gone. To this day, mother's still happy we're alive. Could you just let go, already? Fifteen years' guilt brought you nothing but pain. Stop tormenting yourself over something you had no control over."

"I have control now," Rey said stubbornly. "I have the power, Teeka. We... I... just need to find Karuvius. As soon as possible."

"Well, daylight hasn't burnt out yet," Rockell said. "You might still catch him doing his evening lectures and stuff."

Rey nodded and took a brisk trip to the exit.

"Didn't you at least want a drink first?" Teeka hollered after her brother. He was already out the door. Teeka regarded Rockell with a look of
Why? and I'll fix this before following after her twin brother.
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Re: Slices of Life

Post by Envius » December 2nd, 2014, 9:27 pm

On the Woad
Named after her favorite brand of tree by her parents, Sequoia dedicated her life to the forest as one of its elite guardians. She picked up a bow when she was three years old, and shot her first arrow through an apple when she was five. Sequoia wasn't attuned to the forest so much that she lived there, necessarily, but she was paid a fine salary to stay in the forest one to three nights at a time. Sequoia wasn't one for adventure. She preferred to stay at or near her home, as a defender in the wilderness.

Sequoia was sitting in a tree, on a branch twenty feet up, with her bow slung around her body and arrow quiver strapped to her back. Perched this high, Sequoia could get a clear shot for a surprise attack against any monster come prowling. She was dressed in leather and cloth, and her face was painted with woad. She believed that painting herself with the essence of the plant would grant her strength from the forest.

In the distance, Sequoia heard the clip-clopping of hooves and the rough creak of a set of wheels on a wagon. The forest path was nearby. Sequoia swung her legs over the branch, facing the path. The horse-drawn wagon came into view between the branches of the trees between Sequoia and the road. The wagon driver was a frail old man. Next to him sat a more youthful ride-along, possibly his son or grandson.

Something was amiss.

Sequoia stabilized herself on the branch and armed her bow, loading it with a steel-headed arrow. On the other side of the road, Sequoia detected the gleams of a pair of eyes belonging to a wood devil, an evil spirit brought to life from the remnants of dead trees by foul magic. She could smell the wood rot from her post, but the oblivious old man, his ride-along, and his horse hadn't a clue they were being watched.

It all happened in a matter of seconds, just when Sequoia pulled back the string of her bow. The wood devil thundered out into the open, the driver's horse reared up in panic, the younger man drew a dagger from his boot, which he probably used to fend off brigands, and the old man tried to mush his horse onwward.

The wood devil was a hulk with a grotesque face. It raised its gnarled arms and smashed the side of the wagon. The horse came loose and fled in terror off down the forest path, abandoning its owners. The younger man stood up right in Sequoia's line of sight and attempted to fight off the wood devil.

"Get down," Sequoia hissed through gritted teeth, unable to get a clear shot at the monster.

The old man yelled, "What are you doing, boy?! Get away from it! Run!"

The elder vacated the wagon, but his passenger was either a brave man or an utter fool.

"Get down," Sequoia whispered again. If she let her arrow fly now, it was going to impale the young man through the back of his head. The young man slashed at the wood devil's face, but he missed, and the wood devil backhanded him out of the wagon.

Now!

Sequoia fired her arrow between the branches. Like a shooting star in broad daylight, the arrow passed over the wagon, a glimmer of sunlight reflecting off the arrowhead, and buried itself in the wood devil's left eye. The wood devil threw its head back and let out a cry of pain in the form of a lot of wooden sheets being ground together. Sequoia was just about to shoot a second arrow when the dagger-wielding young man took advantage of the wood devil's vulnerability. She held her fire and watched the young man climb up the wood devil's body and stab it in the other eye with his dagger. Now the wood devil was blind, but it went berserk.

Sequoia screamed out at the top of her lungs, "Get away from the monster!"

The young man dropped to the ground. He tried to run. The wood devil grabbed him just as Sequoia's arrow came sailing in. The arrow went through the wood devil's head, and down the monster went with a mighty crash, kicking up a cloud of dust.

Hacking and coughing, the young man sheathed his dagger and came staggering out of the dust cloud. The old man slapped him across the head, called him a fool, and hugged him afterward.

"You were lucky to make it out alive," Sequoia said, startling the two travelers as she emerged from the shade of the forest.

The two of them broke apart and the younger one said, "Was that you shooting those arrows?"

Sequoia rolled her eyes, hanging her bow around her body again. The answer should have been obvious. She was the only one here with a bow and quiver full of steel-headed arrows.

"Anyway," Sequoia said, "you're not far from the village. I can escort you there to get help."

"But we can't leave our wagon," the old man said. "It's got our supplies."

"Don't worry," said Sequoia, "the rangers already have this area under supervision. Anyone suspicious comes near it, they'll be confronted."
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Re: Slices of Life

Post by Envius » December 3rd, 2014, 11:02 pm

Time is of the Essence
That night in the village, Rey and Teeka, pyromancer and cryomancer fraternal twins, sought out Karuvius, the elder chronomancer, with a favor to ask. The twins parted ways with their acquaintance, Rockell, the squire from the tavern in the Outskirts, to find him.

Actually, it was Rey who wanted to find Karuvius. Teeka was saying
No, no, no all the live-long way.

They found the old chronomancer's home near the center of the village. He had a quaint house with a modest set of walls and a tiled roof. You wouldn't expect someone as grand as Karuvius to live so simply.

"Karuvius!" Rey called out from fifty yards away. Karuvius' hand was on the doorknob, and he hadn't even opened the front door yet. Now having caught up, Rey said, "Karuvius... I need your help."

"Don't do this, Rey," Teeka said with a scowl.

Karuvius' eyes saddened. "Hello, child," he said heavily. "What is it you wish of me?"

"Karuvius," Rey began, "I just realized something important, you
must hear me out, please."

"Don't listen to him, Karuvius," Teeka chimed in, "he's mad with grief."

Karuvius waited patiently, his old eyes still saddened by the knowledge of what Rey wanted.

"Sir," Rey said, "I had a memory return to me. When my sister and I were children, I saw my older self. He saved us—"

"From a fire," Karuvius finished for him. "Yes... I know. I'd hoped you wouldn't come to me a second time."

"What?" Teeka said.

"Rey... time is fleeting. I let you talk me into sending you back once. Please don't make me do it again."

"Once?" Rey repeated, completely clueless. "What do you mean?"

"I've already sent you back in time," said Karuvius. "You don't remember it because your memory has been corroded."

The twins looked at each other. Then Teeka asked, "When did this happen, Karuvius?"

"Rey approached me three years ago today," the old chronomancer told her. "He convinced me that I had already sent him back in time once, but he required my services a second time. I remember now. He has only gone back once, to save himself and you from certain death. He failed to save your mother from the flames, but it was his presence that helped her survive."

The chronomancer stroked his beard.

"You see, children, I will not send you – either of you – to a different point in time. Ever again. You emerged with your will intact this time because Laima willed it so."

"Karuvius," Rey choked.

"Oh, c'mon, Rey, don't start crying," Teeka muttered.

A tear, then two tears, then a waterfall. Rey trembled and sobbed, but he was trying to laugh. He already saved himself, his sister, and his mother. His mother was burnt because he saved her from death.

There was nothing more he could do.

"I'm sorry, Rey," Karuvius said softly, "but you've already accomplished your mission. Give your mother my regards, and cherish her. She's alive now when fate declared her demise fifteen years ago. You changed that fate."

And Karuvius went inside his house, leaving Rey to weep, and his sister to guide him to the nearest inn.
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Re: Slices of Life

Post by Envius » December 4th, 2014, 10:03 pm

Dear Oracle
Heizenbrach was fifteen years old, and he was a danger to the village. The last few days were lucky for him, though, because nothing major happened to excite him. So the story went: Whenever Heizenbrach's emotions welled up, he lost focus; when he lost focus, he lost control of his power. When Heizenbrach lost control of his power... big things happened, and while many of those happenings were opportune for adventure-hungry heroes, some of them were a danger to the populace.

For that reason, the village chief kept Heizenbrach close. Heizenbrach lived in the chief's house, along with his parents and the chief's family. They provided him with friendship, love, and care. Heizenbrach was safe from bullies and brash adventurers there.

Well, he
was safe, until today... when he snuck out and met the girl of his dreams. She was a villager named Esmerelda.

Esmerelda was to Heizenbrach like... like... he didn't know, because Heizenbrach wasn't the poetic type. She was the gosh to his dang, gosh dang it. She outweighed him by a few... ten pounds, but that was for the better. Heizenbrach was a skinny boy, and everyone outweighed him. There was something about larger, stronger girls that made him really, well,
go. Esmerelda wasn't plump or fat, she just had more meat on her bones. She could totally be a rocking fighter.

Their first conversation went like this:

"Hey," Heizenbrach said.

"Hi," Esmerelda returned.

"I'm Heizenbrach."

"Esmerelda."

"Nice day," Heizenbrach tried.

"Yeah." Esmerelda smiled.

A few minutes of silence. They were sitting on the bench in the village square, watching the children play.

Then Heizenbrach
went for it. "I like your hair."

"Thank you," Esmerelda said sweetly, her pale face reddening.

"Do you like my hair, too?"

"Yeah," she giggled. She was giggling because Heizenbrach ruffled his hair vigorously until it appeared unkempt, standing out on all ends.

They had a laugh together, then they shared a happy sigh. Then Heizenbrach asked, "You just visiting?"

"No, I live here." Esmerelda had one foot on the bench. She was hugging her leg as she rested her chin on her knee. She turned to him, tossing her pretty hair out of her face. "What about you?"

"I live here, too," Heizenbrach replied, feeling his own face turn red.

Everything looked like it was going to be happy, but that was when Heizenbrach saw
the vision.

"Uh-oh," Heizenbrach remembered saying. He didn't pass out, but he couldn't hear or see Esmerelda or the village square anymore. He was gazing upon a dreamily lit field beneath a pure gold sky, and an ambiguous hero slaying a large tree-monster with their sword. When the monster died, its chest broke open. Inside the monster's chest was the most glorious long staff Heizenbrach ever saw. He could feel that staff's divine power calling out to him. Heizenbrach had to have that staff.

But he also had to have the monster carrying it.

No...

Yes... the monster was out there somewhere...

Please, not again...

It was going to happen again. Like before, a time when Heizenbrach brought a mob of zombies from a cursed graveyard clear across the land, somehow. He saw a vision much like this one, and the zombies teleported into the middle of the village. The village watch worked overtime killing the zombies and burning their disease-ridden corpses before they could rise again. There were casualties.

"...zenbrach? Heizenbrach."

The vision dissolved. Heizenbrach returned to himself, and his eyes met Esmerelda's.

She asked, "What's wrong? Why'd you say uh-oh?"

The village watch sounded the alarm: a large bell that emitted a sharp
ding every time it was stricken.

Voices of the watch: "Wood devil! Wood devil, out by the stables! Clear the streets! Everyone return to your homes!"
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