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Hunger for Knowledge and Other Things(Open/Social)

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Duquin

Duquin
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It was a long way from Zou to Heliohapt. The journey could take anywhere from a week to a fortnight depending on one's method of travel. Sure, the trip could be shortened to mere moments if one used transfer magic circles to teleport. However such measures were hard to find and often held a high price required before the services could be used. That being said, Yakuroro chose to begin his travels via flying carpet with a direct route west through the Jade Dragon mountains before taking a caravan through the Great Plains to reach the ocean. From there the Imuchakk and his chimeric companion took a ship to ferry them across the sea towards the south western continent where Heliohapt awaited.

The purpose for this journey was two-fold. The first reason for heading to the hot and dry lands was to investigate rumors of another dungeon rising from the sands of The Desert of Forgotten Souls. The second reason to visit these lands famous for swordsmanship and exotic skinned people of great beauty and culture was to research a lost civilization and the language they left behind, Toran. Yakuroro was determined to learn more about the origins of the world in hopes that some light might be shed upon the mystery of the dungeons and those called "Magi" who were raising them.

Unfortunately for Yakuroro a storm hit the ship he was riding as they approached Heliohaptan waters while he was sleeping below deck. The Imuchakk received a rude awakening from a suddent torrent of sea water as the ship capsized only to be smashed against the ocean's merciless waves. The currents were strong, even for an Imuchakk, and it was all Yakuroro could do just to save his own life and Akatetsu's, let alone the sailors whom were also tossed into the drink. After a day of swimming, the exhausted Blue magician finally reached the shore only to find himself and his beast friend face to face with the vast Desert of Forgotten Souls.

Yakuroro has spent the last three days wandering the dunes trying to find his way to Heliohapt. Using water magic he was able to survive without dehydrating by pulling scarce water from the atmosphere, but a lack of food was starting to get to him. The Imuchakk made exhausted slow steps through the blazing sands as Akatetsu rested on the tail of the man's robes. The lizard-like Bonehead was cold blooded and actually found this harsh climate rather pleasant and was taking the chance to sunbathe.

At last, the lack of sustenance finally got to Yakuroro and he collapsed at the foot of a sand dune. "That's it...I'm done Tetsu...you go on without me..." Yaku panted through his exhaustion urging his chimera to strive forwards alone. Akatetsu hopped up from the tail of Yaku's robes and moved to shake him as if to prod life and energy back into its father figure. "Gyao! Gyao!" Worry in the beasts voice was clear but Yakuroro simply rose a weak hand to push the beast forwards, "...Go!" The Imuchakk had already accepted his fate was to die here and demanded Akatetsu go on without him.

Akatetsu ran off in tears, but not to abandon Yakuroro. The Chimera would pull the jade green flying carpet from Yakuroro's waist and mounted the magic tool before willing it to fly. Tetsu would search the surrounding desert for help hoping to find someone who could help save his father.


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Thank you all, for everything.
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The boat ride over to the Heliohapt was rough, and not just because of the storm.  Altair had to high-tail it out of Balbadd because of his actions in the city, and since he couldn't pay for a ride without being arrested, he had to stow away.  he hid in a barrel of potatoes for a good 3 weeks.  the diet of only potatoes was, while not particularly nice, enough to keep him alive and hydrated.

it was also incredibly boring, sitting in a barrel for weeks on end.  even though he spent most of his time sleeping, when he was awake, it was an agonizing task to keep himself entertained.  he had already counted the number of potatoes in the barrel 100 times over (244 currently).  he once tried to play tic tac toe with one of the crew in secret, by drawing it into the side of the wall.  but all that did was almost get him discovered.

Speaking of getting discovered, suddenly Altair was awoken by his world tumbling sideways.  he fell out of the barrel headfirst, and rolled into one of the ships support beams, much to the surprise and anger of the ships cook.  "Well well, what have we got here then?  a stowaway on his lord's ship!  I have a mind to kill you right here boy!"  He was then picked up by the scruff of his neck and carried to the deck, where the captain and the boat's owner were waiting.  "I found this one hiding in a barrel of potatoes my lord.  What do you say we do with him?"  The owner of the ship came forwards and grabbed Altair by the chin.  "Why, he appears to be nothing more than a simple shepherd boy.  He probably wanted to start a new life away from the herd in Heliohapt.  Poor thing.  Set him adrift."

Altair choked.  "Wait what?  Don't i at least get a last wish or something!?"  The captain stepped forwards then.  "Sure boy.  you can ask for anything except to stay on the boat.  As i am a kind captain, i'll grant you your dying wish."  Altair thought for a moment before replying, "I want my potatoes."  This brought a roar of laughter from the crew and other passengers, but the captain's face was serious.  "Smart kid..." he muttered before putting Altair and a barrel of potatoes into a dingy and setting him loose.

It was a full week before Altair hit shore.  The sandy dunes were indicative of the Desert of Forgotten Souls he had heard about.  He began his trek inland, simply choosing a direction and heading towards it.  he wished it were night so he could discern his direction by the stars, but sleeping during the day in these wastes was akin to suicide.

He walked for a full day before a strange sight came into his vision.  "Is that... A Lizard riding a carpet?" he said to himself.  after a few more moments, the carpet was upon him.  Altair drew his Rod and prepared to defend himself, but there was no need.  The beast simply motioned for him to get on the carpet.  He seemed to be in a bit of distress.  Against all better judgement, Altair grabbed his barrel of potatoes and climbed aboard, not knowing where if anywhere the weird-lizard-thing would take him.  they flew for about an hour, before finally coming to rest next to a man in blue, face down in the sand.  "Oh man, is he your master?  He's nearly dead!"  Altair hopped off the carpet and, using more effort than he thought he would need, propped the man up on his knee.  "Here, drink."  he said, as he squeezed the water out of a potato.

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Duquin

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It had miraculously only take Akatetsu a few minutes to actually find someone. The height and speed of the flying carpet allowed for a great view including the skyline of Heliohapt in the distance to the west a good many miles away, but in sight none-the-less. Why Yakuroro hadn't been using it to travel through the desert could only be blamed on a lack of judgement due to the ordeal he'd been through. Although, while the view the carpet gave was certainly of help, it was the chimera's keen sense of smell which caught scent of Altair and his spuds on the wind. Following it back to its source Akatetsu approached the shepherd and pleaded for help with growls. When the stranger boarded the carpet and loaded the barrel the carpet would then speed away to where it had come from at the will of it's chimeric pilot. The jade green magic tool would kick up a small cloud sending sand swirling into the air covering Yakuroro.

Akatetsu was unable to see Yaku due to the sand now concealing his body and panicked as a result. He lept off the carpet causing it to suddenly plummet the one half meter left between it and the sandy dunes. The lizard beast ran wailing with tears towards where it had last seen Yakuroro only to trip over his body. "Gyao!!!" Akatetsu cried out in relief and brushed off the sand before rolling his father over. At this point, the stranger took over and rose Yakuroro's head to squeeze potato water for him. However the Imuchakk before his eyes would look far from dehydrated. In fact, his mouth was simply dripping with drool and tears were streaming from his eyes. "FOOOOOOOD!" Suddenly a burning passion for survival overtook the northerner's body and he lept into the air catching the potato out of Altair's hand. Half the spud was devoured violently by the time the Imuchakk landed on his feet. "Tetsu! We have food!"  The blue magician shouted with joy as he handed the other half of the potato to his liewise starved companion.

The Imuchakk was now smiling like the happiest person in the world as if there were no worries upon his shoulders at all.  In fact, he seemed so wrapped up in enjoying food with his chimera that it seemed as though he'd completely forgotten about his savior. Yakuroro turned a set of blue eyes and glanced at Altair briefly as Yakuroro analyzed the man before him. His body was not that of a slave or a poor man despite lacking extravagant clothes and the rod he carried was surely that of a shepherd. But with what flock? And why a barrel of potatoes? There were many mysteries about this man but right now Yakuroro needed more food. As the glance ended Yaku turned to face Altair directly and put on a warm smile before closing his eyes and making a bow with his head. "I am Yakuroro, a traveling researcher and magician from Magnostatd. Thank you, your potato has given me the energy to go on, but as you can imagine, I'll need more to make my way to Heliohapt in one piece. I happen to be a blue magician, would you care to trade with me? A Barrel of potatoes for a walking, breathing, fountain of water. Sound like a deal?"

As the Imuchakk finished speaking he rose his staff and made a demonstration to show he was not lying, "Calling Waters!" As the words left his lips Yakuroro fed magou through his unicorn horn staff commanding the rukh of the water in the atmosphere to gather. 10 galling of precious water would form into an irregular blob which Yaku guided a few meters away before letting it splash into the sand.

Magoi - 240/250

Spoiler:
Name: Calling Waters
Tier: D
Cost: 10 Magoi
Element: Water
Class: Supplementary
Range: Close, 5m
Duration: One Turn
Cool-Down: 2 Turns
Description: The magician orders the rukh to gather water from the atmosphere. 10 gallons of water then manifests in the air in front of the user. Once the 10 gallons forms in the shape of a large blob of water, the user may choose any spot within 5 meters of themselves to drop it. The resulting splash of water can be enough to soak a small group of people or knock over small children and animals weighing less than 60lbs.


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Thank you all, for everything.
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Almost as soon as the water from the potato touched the man's lips, he sprang up, grabbing the potato and eating half of it almost instantly. Altair was knocked over by the sheer force the man carried, but found himself laughing as the giant exclaimed to his "pet" that they finally had food. they ate the potato ravenously together almost before even noticing that Altair was sitting there. the man introduced himself as Yakuroro. He was a researcher, but what he was researching he didn't say. But the really interesting thing about him was that he said he was a magician. "You can really perform magic?" Altair asked, only to see Yakuroro turn around and summon gallon after gallon of water from the sandy dunes. This had to be the most extraordinary thing Altair had ever seen. to summon water from nothingness? From earth so parched it couldn't grow a cactus? To be sure, he would need water to make it through this desert, and Yakuroro seemed to be the man for the job.

"I'll tell you what. I'll give you the potatoes on the condition you escort me to Heliohapt and that i still get two a day until we reach Heliohapt. You and your, um, lizard?, can have the rest of them. Does that sound fair?" Altair took this moment to observe the man. His staff was indeed that of a magicians, although Altair needed no more proof of his being one. The man was also of an enormous size, easily bigger than most of the men he had ever fought. His hair was also an ice blue color. Oh, wait, there was a race like that to the north wasn't there? Large build, blue hair... was it called the Imuchakk? Strange that one would be so far south, and in a desert to boot.

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Duquin

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Yakuroro wasn't really all too keen about showing off with his magic, however he certainly enjoyed that a spectator was appreciating his efforts. Back home in Imuchakk, magic was almost treated as a stigmatism and received very little praise or respect. Those of the tribes preferred the reliability of their own muscles and sturdy spears as all they really aspired towards was the hunt. It didn't matter how much easier magic could make their lives. The Imuchakk were content to live in tents and survive off hunted game. This is why Yakuroro loved the outside world, far from his home tribe, as people seemed to understand the value and wonders of magic. The Blue Magician lowered his staff as the demonstration ended and eye'd the shepherd carefully while listening to his response. The man was no fool and bargained for a deal that ensured the best chances for his own survival. Yakuroro had no intentions of keeping all the potatoes to himself from the start, however this stranger had calculated such a possibility and took steps to ensure it would not be so.

The smile on Yakuroro's lips widened as he nodded and brought a fist to his chest in a sort of salute. "Good then! By the honor of my name "Yakuroro" I agree to provide you with water in exchange for potatoes while we both head to Helio-" The large man was interrupted suddenly by Akatetsu piping in, "Gyao!" Yakuroro looked down to the beast and chuckled before patting its bone covered head, "Hahaha, of course, how could I forget? While the three of us head to Heliohapt. While on the way you will get two potatoes a day. Am I forgetting anything?" Yakuroro would pause and wait for Altair to confirm before nodding and pointing his staff northward in the completely wrong direction, "Lets be off then!"

Thankfully Akatetsu was there to perform a flying headbutt into Yakuroro's back causing the large Imuchakk to stumble forwards faceplanting into the sand. The blue magician rose his head from the dunes and spat out a mouthful of sand as he looked to see Akatetsu run over the the flying carpet and point to the west where the city was. "Oh...umm...Onward!" Yaku said as he grabbed the barrel of potatoes joining the Chimera on the carpet and waited for Altair to hop on. Once the were up and in the air Yakuroro guided the carpet to fly nice and high away from the sandy winds but at a moderate pace so the air rushing past them was not so intense that it prevented easy conversation.

"So, what is your name? What brought you to the Desert of Forgotten Souls with little more than a shepherd's staff and a barrel of potatoes?"


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"Sounds good to me."  Altair was about to follow Yakuroro, who he assumed knew where he was going, until the Lizard performed a flying headbutt into Yakuroro's back.  "I'm gonna say we follow the guy with a better sense of smell."  He said as he got on the Carpet.

Just after they settled at a decent speed and height, Yakuroro asked Altair a question that honestly he wasn't prepared to give an honest answer to a total stranger.  But Yakuroro seemed nice enough to hear him out a little.  He could at least tell him the basics right?  Altair decided to chance it.  "My name is Altair Loros.  And yes, i was a shepherd for both the wandering Loros tribe, and for a short time in Balbadd as well.  As for the reason i am here, well, that's a bit of a story.  But then again, i suppose we have time before we get to Heliohapt."  He proceeded to tell Yakuroro the whole story.  from his arrival in Balbadd and being put in jail for beating a slave trader senseless, all the way up to his escape from Balbadd after a job gone wrong and being discovered as the slave freeing vigilante "The Sovereign".  He made sure to leave out the parts of him killing anyone, because though he felt it was necessary, it still weighed on his conscience.  He then told of his stowaway boat ride in a barrel of potatoes, to his last wish, to finally arriving on the beaches where the Lizard had found him.  "And, finally, after a short time on the carpet, i found you lying in the sand.  and the rest, is history."  Although he wasn't particularly adept at telling stories, the traditions of the Loros story tellers made it an interesting and exciting tale nonetheless.  Even all the boring parts about sheep.

"Now it's my turn to ask you a question. Why are you going to Heliohapt? Is it to enter the dungeon? If it is, we might have a bit of a conflict of interest. Since it's going to be me who conquers it." Altair said with a smile. He had a good idea about just how dangerous dungeons could be. after all, only the last ones to enter come out alive. But he felt it was better to think in a positive light than get scared off by merely danger.

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Gurgle~. Diego looked down at Trixie and blinked, "You hungry?" She responded by leaning heavily on his hip, nearly knocking him over with the force, with a loud, chirping purr. Sighing, Diego looked around to get his bearings. Having only been in the city a few hours, he had gotten lost and he couldn't seem to find a shop that sold food. They had somehow managed to find themselves on a street lined with small homes.

Diego heard someone humming and turned around to see a young girl with long white hair, skipping around the corner. When she saw Diego she waved and upon seeing Trixie she exclaimed, "No WAY! A tiger!" Diego grimmaced, ready for her to scream and was about to explain, the girl ran up to Trixie and gave her a flying tackle. "Kitty!" she yelled, giving Trixie a big smile while scratching a spot behind her ears that reduced the tiger into a purring fluffball.

Diego chuckled, "I take it you like her?" When the girl nodded enthusiastically, he smiled. "Her name is Madam Trixie, after a Pirate Queen."

The girl's eyes went wide, "A Pirate Queen?!" Diego nodded and the girl looked at Trixie, "Is she a pirate too?"

"No, but she is a cunning warrior. Without her, I'd be helplessly lost." Diego looked around, "Like I am now, actually. Do you know where a butcher shop is?"

The girl nodded, "Yeah, I was actually heading there to see my mom. I can show you!" She got up and began skipping down the road, "Come on!" With a quick look at Diego, Trixie bounded after the girl after the magical skritches.

"Thanks for helping me out. The name is Diego." He said after catching up. "I just got to town."

"My name is Ella. Where'd you come from?" She reached down to rub Trixie's head as they turned right onto a street that looked to lead to a busier road and out of the housing district.

"We came from Magnostradt. I had never seen the desert before." He noticed that her eyes went wide again and he shook his head, "No, I'm not a magician. I use to live on the plains nearby."

"Oh. Was it pretty?" Ella asked as she paused to twirl and continued skipping along.

They got to the crossroad and turned left. Diego could start to smell food and by the way Trixie's ears perked, he knew she did too. "Oh yes. I think this place is pretty too, in its own way."

Ella nodded as she stopped in front of a small shop with a sign displaying a butcher's knife hanging from the roof. "Here we are!" She pointed at Trixie, "She'll have to stay out here, Mom doesn't let pets inside. I can watch her though!" When Diego nodded, she beamed and tackled Trixie to the ground. Trixie let out a playful deep meow if someone unaccustomed to bigger cats would mistake it for a growl. Ella paused, "Is she mad?"

Diego shook his head, "No, that's a noise she makes when she wants to play. Be gentle Trix, I'm going inside." He looked at Trixie to make sure he heard and went inside the shop.

The smell of blood and raw meat struck him as he walked in causing his stomach to growl. He blushed as an older woman looked up from chopping what appeared to be the leg of an animal into thick slices. "Hello! I'd like some thick cuts of meat, probably five or six pounds."

The woman nodded and looked out the window, "Ella! Oh no!" She ran out the store, shoving past Diego in her panic. He followed her out to see Ella lying on her back, with her feet closet to the door and Trixie sitting on her lap, with her back facing them. She was hunched over licking Ella's face, but he knew the mother didn't know that.

"Ma-" Diego tried to interrupt but the woman's screams drowned him out.

"Guards! Guards! My daughter! It's killing her!" She wailed as she collapsed on her knees. She flung the knife at Trixie's back, grazing her right side. Trixie spun around with a scowl that would scare most people and hissed.


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Duquin

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The Imuchakk and his strange lizard-like beast listened to Altair's story with interest. Yakuroro smiled warmly and laughed heartily when appropriate, yet behind that appearance he was silently passing judgement on Altair in his mind. The man's efforts to free slaves was admirable but it seemed like there was more to that story than being told. But there was no reason for Yakuroro to pry on the subject as he'd seen Altair's selfless kindness first hand. If the former shepherd was hiding something then it was likely for good reason and besides, Yakuroro held many secrets of his own. Akatetsu seemed to find the whole story rather entertaining and once Altair was finished, the chimera stood up and gave applause whilst growling happily, "Gyao! Gyao!" as if to demand an encore.

A deep chuckle from Yakuroro and a firm hand patting Akatetsu's head would calm the beast as Altair posed his own questions towards the Blue magician. The tale about Altair's "last wish" had been a display of his sharp intuition but to ask about the dungeons revealed he had a far keener mind than Yakuroro was initially giving him credit for. The Imuchakk's eyes would meet Altair's and settle there for a brief second before closing as he gave a big silly grin, "Me? Actually enter a dungeon?" Another chuckle escaped the large man's lips as he waved the idea away as if it were ludacris. "Don't entire armies go into those things never to be heard of again? Ohohoho~ There's no way I'd be brave enough to risk my life in such a death trap."

The grin on Yaku's face settled back to a simple warm smile as he finished his deflection. While it was true he didn't intend on entering the dungeon this time, he did intend to investigate it from the outside. But the last thing he wanted to do was announce to the world that he'd already conquered a dungeon. "No, no, I told you already didn't I? I'm a travelling researcher. I've come to Heliohapt to investigate the ruins of a lost civilization in hopes to learn the mysterious "Toran Language" from the remains. If I have a chance to look at the dungeon from afar I'll certainly enjoy the view~ But my purpose here is a scholarly one, not a mad suicidal quest fo-...umm, sorry. I didn't mean to suggest you wouldn't succeed. You should be careful though, I heard rumors that the people who entered the first Dungeon faced all kinds of horrors from invisible men to giant monsters."

With his warning complete Yakuroro would wait to hear Altair's response.

((Altair, please time skip us into the city at the end of your next post so we can group up with Diego~))


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Altair arched an eyebrow at Yakuroro, a smile growing on his face. "Really? You of all people are afraid of the dungeons? A big, burly, Imuchakk Magician like yourself? You literally have the forces of nature at your fingertips. What could you really be afraid of? I mean, you almost laughed off starving to death a second ago!" Altair broke into a whole hearted laugh, then. "I kid of course. The dungeons sure are a source of intrigue though. I can understand why you would want to study them." Altair slowly began to take on a more serious face. He was contemplating asking the man something that shouldn't be taken lightly. In fact, why he felt like it was something he should ask was beyond him. But somewhere inside he knew that he wouldn't be able to take on the dungeon alone. And having a Mage for a companion was continuing to seem like a better and better idea.

"You say you wish to research the dungeon without going inside. But i've heard that every dungeon takes on a different form. How much can you hope to gleam just from scratching the surface? To enjoy a pomegranate, you have to venture inside and find the seeds. I would think that you would want to team up with whoever you thought had the best chance of conquering it, not just be complacent with the cover of the book. So, Yakuroro, while i don't expect an answer now, I would ask you: would you take on this dungeon with me?" Altair was quiet for a long time after asking his question. Like he said, he couldn't expect Yakuroro to make such a decision at a moment's notice. But Altair had a job to do. He had people to save, and conquering this dungeon went a long way towards helping the slaves find freedom. From Heliohapt, all the way to Zou. Altair would liberate them all.

Most of the carpet ride was quiet the rest of the way to Heliohapt. Only some idle chatter broke the silence between the two, but nothing of importance was discussed. Not after Altair's big question. They arrived in Heliohapt at around noon the next day, landing a short distance from the bustling city so as not to be seen on the flying carpet. Walking in, they saw many sights and sounds that were unfamiliar to them. Including it seemed, a wild tiger.

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Diego quickly searched the faces of the crowd starting to form around the scene and he couldn't find a friendly face. Worse, the guards were on their way with brandished weapons. Trixie had quickly retreated behind him and now he was trying to defend himself against and angry mother wielding a rather large butcher knife.

"How dare you let that beast run rampant in the streets! My daughter could have died!" She was hysterical and the sunlight glinted off the knife's sharp edge as spoke animatedly. She held Ella tightly by her side and waved at the guards. "Here they are! Put that kid and his beast away!" She mistook Ella's pleas and struggling against her as a sign of fear and glared at Diego with disgust.

The guards were pushing through the crowd and Diego panicked, unsure of how to deal with the situation. He felt Trixie brush her head against his arm and he looked down to see her staring at him. The look in her eyes said that she believed in him. He took a deep breath and shouted, "Stop!" When he had everyone's attention he looked at Ella. She was crying and trying to get out of her mother's grip. Her mother looked down and was surprised to find her daughter directing anger towards her. "Hear what Ella has to say, please." He pleaded.

Ella finally pulled from her mother's grip and stomped her foot, "THE KITTY IS A NICE KITTY! DON'T HURT HER!" Fat tears were welling down her face as she ran and wrapped her arms tightly around Trixie's neck. "SHE'S MY FRIEND!"

The guards looked at each other and then at the Mother standing there looking embarrassed, "Ma'am?"

The mother stood there silent for a few minutes, looking down at the ground. She promptly lifted her head, "Fine." She grabbed Ella and stormed back into the butcher's shop. People stunned at first began to disperse after that and the guards shrugged before walking off laughing.

Diego crouched down and hugged Trixie. "Thank you, girl." He kissed the top of her head and started walking away, "Let's go." Trixie bounded off after him and hoped that he hadn't forgotten she was still starving.

An hour later, Trixie had Diego pinned on the ground, licking his face when he heard a familiar voice screech, "KITTY!" A blur flew into Trixie, knocking her off of Diego onto her side. Diego looked over to see Ella with a death grip around Trixie. "OH! I brought you scraps!" Ella reached into her pocket and pulled out strips of raw meat. Trixie's eyes sparkled and she began mewling and gently kneading Ella's belly, tickling her. "HAHA! STOP IT!" She fed Trixie each piece individually.

Brushing off his pants and smiling at the cute scene before him he felt someone tap on his shoulder. He turned around to face Ella's mother looking rather shy.

"I'm sorry about earlier...I freaked out...and then....I was just so embarrassed. She seems like a beautiful tiger. She's very gentle...Ella loves her." She looked up, sincerely hoping for his forgiveness.

Deigo chuckled, "Don't worry about it. " He smiled and looked to the pair now wrestling around on the ground, seeing who could out-tickle who, "Plus, I don't blame you for your reaction. I would think poorly of you if you didn't react that way." His smile widened and then quickly dropped into embarrassment as his stomach loudly growled.

"You must be starving, one second!" The mother took off running down the street before Diego could say anything. He turned around to see Ella squealing with laughter hanging on to Trixie's tail as the tiger spun around in quick circles. Ella flapped her legs as she spun, her face lit up with joy.


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Yakuroro blushed and rubbed the back of his head in embarrassment toward getting seen through so easily. But Altair didn't need to know that was why he'd reacted in such a manner. The Imuchakk mentally noted, "Damn...He's pretty sharp after all. I'll need to be careful around this one..." before speaking aloud with a humble smile and earnest eyes. "I am no hero,  Altair." The magician brought his hands together in his lap and looked down at them with a solemn gaze before continuing. "There are all sorts of problems a magician can't solve with magic alone. I'll stick to my notes and research and leave the adventures to brave folk such as yourself. Who else would write books about your conquests!?Ahahaha!"

It seemed like that had satisfied Altair's curiosity but after a brief pause the man spoke once more and prodded deeper on the dungeon subject event going so far as to invite Yakuroro into one! For a moment the Imuchakk would soften his smile and the warmth in his gaze was replaced with something else. They seemed more alive but at the same time they held a sovereignty and dignity of a King Candidate.

"Gyaooo~"

Akatetsu had been observing the conversation to watch how his father handled his guest with intentions to learn from the experience. But what caught his attention and caused the amazed growl was because it knew the look Yakuroro was now giving Altair. It was the same way he looked at Akatetsu when they had first met. Yaku had removed the social masks usually employed and was truly looking at the potato bringer for the first time. These were the eyes of the man who had already conquered a dungeon.

The Imuchakk crossed his arms and the deep purple ring on his left hand gleamed in the sunlight. Engraved with Solomon's Seal, the Metal Vessel for the Djinn Marax was intentionally revealed to Altair's eyes. It was usually just barely hidden by the madoushi's long sleeves but Yakuroro had intentionally revealed it to this man. Should Altair do as he aspired and challenged a dungeon then he would surely recognize just what Yakuroro was. But for not the Imuchakk said nothing to reveal his identity and simply spoke in a ominous voice, "Perhaps if you enter the dungeon you'll understand why I don't want to go. You see, I studied the first dungeon that rose. It was called 'Marax...'"

The ring at Yakuroro's finger shone in the sunlight again as he spoke, "I watched over a hunderd men walk into that place and not one of them came out alive. It rose near Magnostatd when I was studying there. But sadly I was never accepted to the academy...Apparently my magic wasn't good enough to be enrolled." A bit of contempt entered Yakuroro's smile as he mentioned that for this was all true! Both the number of people he'd seen consumed by the dungeon as well as his trouble enrolling in the magical academy.

The gentle eyes and more friendly smile returned and Yakuroro finished his denial to Altair's proposal. "My research on the Toran language is more important. I'm also interested in researching Heliohaptan culture as this is my first time in this country! But I do wish you luck if you do decide to pass through a dungeon's gate. Apparently someone conquered Marax, although no one has or heard of such a person since it vanished." and with that Yakuroro's monologue was done.

It seemed that he had made some sort of impact on Altair as it seemed he preferred silence for most of their trip aside from some meager few words here and there...

-Time Skip to Noon-

The magic carpet would fly from beneath everyone's feet just half a meter off the ground giving it time to return to Yakuroro's waist before tying into a knot around his robes. They landed in a plaza on east on the east side of the capital where many people were coming and going. Yakuroro was about to speak to Altair when he noticed the Akatetsu was missing.

Curiosity had overcome the young chimera as he spotted the big cat near the fountain playing with a little girl. This was his first time really seeing a "beast" that looked docile. Akatetsu's tiny legs scurried forth as he ran up to Madam Trixie jumping into the air a few meters before landing about one meter away. The bone head posed with his claws at his waist and held his head high as he announced himself with a happy growl. "Gyao!~" The lizard-like creature had oddly human looking eyes which were giving the tiger a friendly gaze.

"Akatetsu!!! Yakuroro cried out his adopted son's name and looked around with genuine worry fearing the baby had gotten lost in the crowd. Being 8'2" really came in hand since no one else was around as tall as Yakuroro in the throng of citizen's so he was easily able to spot Akatetsu. The sea of people parted for the large man and he didn't even require magic for that. His presence as a giant among men was enough to clear a path for Yakuroro as he hurried over to Tetsu in a sprint until he saw there was no obvious danger and slowed down.

Yakuroro's eyes focused on the large beast there being friendly with a young girl and wondered to himself, I've never seen a wild beast tamed so well before! What kind of person was able to raise a feral animal into something so friendly it's trusted with a child without parental supervision!? The Imuchakk suddenly a huge sense of culture shock as he wrongly assumed this was simply normal in Heliohapt. After all, no one seemed to CARE that a small child was playing patty cake with a pawed predator! "What the heck is wrong with this country?...." The Imuchakk muttered in disbelief as he tried to regain his composure.

The blue magician's eyes then scanned the area looking for someone who might be a parent or owner of the big cat nearby. He was very curious to see if this was a reckless act of neglect or the trust of a strong bond held with the beast's master?


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Thank you all, for everything.
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Altair listened closely as Yakuroro recounted a small part of his past. He couldn't believe that someone who could pull water out of a desert wouldn't be accepted to the great academy at Magnostadt. And Marax... While he believed that Yakuroro hadn't entered the dungeon, he now knew for sure that he knew about what might be inside. As they flew, Altair caught a glimpse of something on Yakuroro's hand. A purple ring. It had some kind of insignia on it but before he could get a closer look it was covered by the folds of his clothes once again. Altair decided not to ask.

Heliohapt

Altair followed Yakuroro into the bustling city and took in the atmosphere. the sights, sounds, and smells were all so foreign, yet unmistakable. The big city. Altair walked alongside the large Imuchakk, that is until Yakuroro took off looking for his Lizard companion. Luckily, it's nearly impossible to lose a man that large, even in a busy street, so Altair was able to catch up pretty quickly. The interesting thing however, was what he saw when he reached him.

A large white tiger was playing with a child in the street. Altair froze, carefully observing the actions of the tiger. It took a moment, but he was eventually convinced that the beast was well trained. he relaxed, and looked for the tigers master. He saw no one that fit the bill off the bat, so he asked the girl. "Hey there. Your friend seems nice. He's very fluffy isn't he? Would you happen to know where his master is?"

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Trixie lifted her head from Ella's lap when a strange lizard with a bone head leapt towards her. With its hands on its waist it gave a happy growl, "Gyaooo~".  The amblicale look in its eyes put her at ease and she replied with a friendly mew. Diego laughed at the adorable lizard, "Well, hello, little fella."

"Akatetsu!!!"

Diego saw a rather tall man moving through the crowd, apparently this pet's master. The fact that the man had blue hair was more impressive to him, than his height. While he hadn't seen people that tall, he was used to be short, but the fact that hair could be such a color fascinated him. He was about to comment on the man's hair when someone else from the crowd approached Ella.

"Hey there. Your friend seems nice. He's very fluffy isn't he? Would you happen to know where his master is?" The man said in a friendly tone.

Ella hugged Trixie tight with a smile on her face, "Yes, she's very fluffy." She looked up at the blue haired man and stared in awe struck fascination. "WOWOWOW! You sure are tall!" She pointed at his hair, "I want blue hair too!"

Diego sat down next to Ella and rubbed Trixie's soft fur, "Trixie has no master." Trixie looked up and he smiled, "She has a bond with a loyal friend who walks hand-in-paw with her down the path of destiny." He looked up at the men with a look that reflected the kinship they shared. He sighed and ran his fingers through his hair, "I was warned to be careful who I talk to about this," his face grew serious, "but, we are searching for a man named Jagang. He killed my entire tribe and I've sworn to get revenge. He mentioned something about Heliohapt before he died and that's why I'm here now."


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Akatetsu seemed to become a bit more cheerful when Madam Trixie responded to his greeting in a positive manner. The chimera cautiously reached out to pet the large feline only to full on tackle into her with snuggling if no resistance was initially shown. Yakuroro would laugh as he watched his son's antics before the young human girl's comment about his exotic hair color was made. The giant knelt down and smiled at the child with a big tooth grin, "I'm from Imuchakk, everyone is as tall as me and has blue hair there!" The magician then stood to his feet and turned his warm smile towards the youthful boy who declared himself an orphan on a quest for revenge. Learning of this would normally have made Yakuroro weary of the black rukh, however the bond this young fanalis showed with his large cat friend and his peaceful atmosphere put such fears at ease. After listening to a brief glimpse into a much deeper past behind the mysterious child beast tamer.

It seemed as though the boy had not yet realized the weight of his vengeance, or perhaps he was simply in denial of it. The Imuchakk guessed that he had never taken a life before and wondered if he had the strength to do so once he finally found this "Jagang" he was searching for. Yakuroro rubbed his chin as he looked down upon the fanalis boy as he introduced himself, "I see...Well, my Name is Yakuroro, and this is my son, Akatetsu." He would allow Altair to introduce himself but not before making a declaration to everyone nearby. "I would like to apologize for Tetsu's rude manners and I've had nothing but potatoes to eat for days! Would you like to join us over a meal? I'm a traveling magician, but tales of adventure interest me and I might pay good huang if I find your story interesting." This would allow Yakuroro to secure more time to study this curious cat and it's enigmatic child companion AND provide a chance to really fill his belly.

((I think this is a good point to start closing out the thread because once everyone agrees to go eat we can end it there and just pick up future threads at any point after the meal.))


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"Now that, i can agree to." Altair said. The thought of something other than potatoes made his mouth water. "My name is Altair. I actually met Yakuroro just a few days ago, when he was starving to death in the desert. But thanks to my potatoes, and Yakuroro's water magic, we both made it out alive." Although Altair was making small talk, he was really puzzled about this man who would share his dark desires before even sharing his name. The man was strange, and his pet even stranger, but there was something about him that Altair liked. He just couldn't put his finger on it.

"you should join us for some lunch... umm... What did you say your name was?"


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Altair Loros' Vault
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Diego smiled at the men as they told him who they were and briefly about their journey together. "I'm sorry, how rude of me. My name is Diego, it is nice to meet you two." He was about to say he couldn't leave Ella alone when her mother wandered up with a sack of meat.

"Here, this is for earlier." She said timidly, holding it out to him. The look on her face seemed to say that if he refused it would hurt her feelings.

Diego nodded, "There's no need but I appreciate it." He took the sack and looked down at Ella, "Me and Trixie are going to go with these men now, it was very nice seeing you again. Maybe we'll see each other again soon."

"Ok, thank you for letting me play with your kitty." She gave Trixie a quick hug and went to her mother.

Trixie came up to Diego's side and he motioned forward, "Onwards to food and tales of good times!"


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