The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

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The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Fri Apr 12, 2019 11:03 pm

It was an age of war as legendary gods and extraordinary heroes struggled for supremacy across the face of Yggdrasil. Wars between countries set the gods against one another and their battles were played out by their pawns, warriors and wise men and maniacs and knights. Great beings of near legend emerged from the seething pool of war that was Yggdrasil, until only a handful truly stood out among the rest.

Some were ruthless conquering warlords of one flavor or another. A cunning Lich king inevitably rose among them, as did a cxruel pirate lord, and a cursed vampire. Others sort of straddled the line to one degree or another.

But one guild stood proudly among the great ones. Whenever the world faced a terrible peril, when evil threatened to overwhelm the innocent and defenseless one guild stood up, drew a line in the sand and loudly declared: "NO MORE!" And demon lords would tremble.

Well...in the virtual world of the game of Yggdrasil, anyway.

The current and final leader of the Shields was Brand, a Silver-scaled dragonborn whose body and personality was larger than life. A warrior without peer who had mastered every method of warfare in the world, or so it was said. Mightier than any fighter in the game, rumors suggested. He spoke in a deeper than deep baritone in long speeches that often amazed listeners. He'd done every "good guy" quest in Yggdrasil and carried hard-won legendary weapons and equipment.

His guild rallied around him ferociously, responding to his louder than loud call instantly. The guild was built on people who genuinely enjoyed playing the "good guys" and Brand enforced an in-game code of conduct that worked well for them.When other players saw the Shields of Yggdrasil taking a side in a war, they knew very well that things were going to get very rough for their opposition. They didn't always win the competitions and wars, but they were very hard to forget.

But it was all coming to an end. Yggdrasil was shutting down at last, out-competed by newer, more advanced games. Once the announcement to end it all was made, a third of the members of the guild simply stopped coming. Most of the others dropped out with apologies as the end date came on, but Brand was determined to go down with his ship like a good captain.

This wasn't entirely noble role-play. Brand was, in fact played by a young man for whom the game had become a second life. For six years he'd played the rowdy dragonborn and let the guild for the last two. It was coming to an end, as he knew it one day would, and he found himself unable to let go. This had become such a big part of him...and no one really knew that the boisterous dragonborn was in truth a fearful, physically and mentally scarred kid who couldn't bear to step outside his house or even so much as speak.

Brand stood around the Arthurian-deco hall and stood. He lifted his goblet and began his final speech. He'd worked on it for days and was rather proud of it. It was, in fact, a very good speech, one he was recording and intended to post on the guild's Facebook page.. The last remaining (five) players stood before their seats and lifted their own cups in unison. Brand's deep voice had been synthesized by a known reading program, tweaked a bit here and there to reflect the dragonborn's attitude and inflections. There was even a very slight Scots burr in the voice. It was obviously synthetic, but it didn't bother his guildmates. It just made Brand distinctive. Like a quirk.

Alas, as the final minutes counted and the speech ended, the last Shields of Yggrasil began the process of logging out. Brand drew a massive two handed sword and thrust it into the air and roared: "TILL ALL ARE ONE!"

The response was a little tepid, but they remembered their programmed emotes and did the same thing. Then they set down their swords for the last time.

"Gonna be an after party in the pizza place in my neck of the woods." the last one said. "Wish you could come by."

"You wouldn't recognize me," Brand said. "Give kisses to Lisa and the kids."

"They'll be happy to hear that. What are you going to do?"

"I said I'd see this through to the end," Brand said. "And I shall." He sat down at the head of the table in his formal attire, a nobleman's kilt and banner over a fine embroidered tunic and trousers. "Maybe I'll see some of you online."

"You going to post this speech?"

"You know it," Brand said. "Along with a final once over inspection of our NPCs and a final salute. I'll be great."

"Good luck, Brand."

"DON'T NEED IT!" Brand said as he roared with laughter. "Off you go. Your girls need you."

And that was it.

Brand gathered the NPCs that had been built on the place over the years before him in the throne room. He lined them up for one more inspection...as if they needed it. He briefly hovered by each of them as the time counted down, revealing their levels, class, race, and creators.

Finally he sighed.

And so ends the era of heroes...

...3.
...2.
...1.

Blackness.

Brand suddenly blinked. Something was...odd. The game hadn't shut down. Had he gotten the time zones wrong? No...so why was the game still going?

"What the smeg?" Brand rumbled to himself. He froze in wide eyed amazement as he heard his own voice. There was no more synthesized, metallic echo in it at all. His voice box vibrated and the words came from his own throat like they hadn't since...That Day.

The dragonborn stared at his hands, which responded easily to his every command. Unlike real life.

A chill of fear settled into his scaled chest.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Sat Apr 13, 2019 5:53 am

One of the players, a female in low quality full body armor had raised her goblet joining in, her appearance had been the greatest surprise on this final day. She was Artoria, first guildmaster of the shields and the one that had one by one gathered the players that formed the guild, two years ago she had stopped playing completely after having a terrible accident in real life, that even with countless surgeries and therapy left her permanently disabled from the waist down. She had once been famed as one of the two Yggdrasil’s strongest players bar none but after her accident she had logged in only long enough to pass guild leadership to brand, and her unique armor set and weapon to one of the guild npcs she had birthed. She remained quiet until they were the last two left and then spoke, the only one in the guild who knew who brand was in real life “it has been a long journey brand... thank you... for being a wonderful guild master in my place” she frowned under her full head helmet “I am sorry...... that I had to burden you with such a difficult role...” she made her character stand, a task in the dozens of times for her who was disabled in real life and taking 12 slow and cautious steps to cover the three foot distance between their characters she placed her hand over top of his, her race was a shapeshifter so even if she hadn’t worn the armor brand couldn’t be certain what she looked like underneath, but she was human shaped and sized atleast, her hand small by comparison to his “hopefully one day I can keep my promise” she said regretfully, her promise had been a simple one, to visit him in real life atleast once, something she had been preparing to do before her accident dashed nearly all hope of it, but with that she started the log out process not moving her hand off his until her character vanished.

Brand when he went to gather the npcs was only able to gather 8 because most npcs of the castle were firmly rooted in their areas unmovable by any but their creators, these 8 however were born of Artoria’s efforts and had been changed after her accident to be movable and editable by brand alone.

In the line up first there was a single male knight (his race was a Dragonborn but unlike brand he did not normally show any dragon features) in black armor wielding a dark longsword. This one was named Odric and he was a level 100 knight

Second was a girl, she looked like a human aswell but her red eyes were a hint of her vampiric nature, her attire was a rather fancy costume of red and white cloth, her class was a level 100 monk and her name was Reina, she had apparently been modeled after her creator’s appearance when Artoria was younger (the real artoria was nearing thirty but Reina held the appearance of a 14-15 year old with a rather buxom chest)

The rest was a group known as the Night Maidens, 6 npcs that directly served Reina as a combat maid group, their outfits currently were uniformed classic black and white maid attire but each one a different race and appearance. Arlinn Kord a level 72 werewolf, Beatrice the level 64 angel, Chandra a level 68 humanoid fire elemental, Daphne a level 70 Dryad, Elspeth the level 74 half giant, and finally Felara the level 66 Stoneforge geomancer. The rest of the castle npcs however brand could scroll through a menu to see even though he couldn’t move them.

After the game had seemed to continue, when it shouldn’t have as brand had the right timing, there would be a brief moment of pause before Reina, head maid aswell as leader of the Night Maidens stepped forward looking up at Brand (even sitting he was still nearly a foot taller then she was) “master, is everything alright?” She asked worriedly.

Odric was next to speak “of course the master is not alright, the other supreme ones have all left” he said calmly, he and Reina had been the only npcs in the throne hall, Odric because it was his designated area, and Reina because she was following programming serving the drinks

Reina spun on her heel to stare at odric “I know that little brother! Is it wrong for a girl in love or a maid to be worried about her lover and master?” An ironic choice of wording on Reina’s part, if compared side by side odric looked old enough to be Reina’s grandfather

However these things were not the only things happening that would strike brand as being very odd, the other night maidens had each changed their stance a little bit and some where staring at the exchange between odric and Reina, the others watching brand to see his reaction, to brands best memory not a single action or line being done or used was programmed into any of them.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:18 am

As Artoria left Brand nodded sadly. When she was gone he briefly buried his face in his massive hands. There was almost certainly no chance of her meeting him in real life. He'd pretty much seen to that. His ISP was untraceable and he had all kinds of layers of security protecting his identity. As nice as it might have been...he couldn't ever meet her for real. He was too ugly, to cowardly irl, to handle such an encounter. In truth, he hated himself too much to let her presence be stained by his real self.

Lover? Master? He didn't remember any of that in her background! But the creators of the npcs had private files on their creations too...usually meant for recording great accomplishments and such.

A hand went to his throat. No more mangled voice box.

"I can talk," he said to himself in amazement. He looked down at his other hand, the implications dawning on him. "And...this is real! How?"

He turned his golden eyes back on the gathered Night Maidens and faithful Odric. He had to think of something fast.

"Something has changed," he rumbled. "I want a status update on all the castle's main stations. Odric, I want you to check the outside and report back to me what you see out there. Reina, I want patrols of the halls and corridors for anyone who doesn't belong."

Oh my god...his voice was incredible...like James Earl Jones, Christopher Lee and Keith David all rolled into one. What the hell was happening?
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:39 am

Hearing him speak the npcs all focused on brand and Reina put a hand to her chest “understood master, girls you heard him go patrol! Inform the guardians of you see them to make patrols in their areas aswell to ensure there are no intruders!” She had turned to face the night maidens as she gave out her orders, clearly she was a capable leader, at the same time though her shadow expanded and dozens of bat familiars emerged from it and took flight following unspoken orders from Reina who then turned back to face brand and knelt before him.

Odric hearing his order nodded, his helmet obscured his facial expression “understood, Reina don’t cause our lord to much trouble” he said soft but firmly before turning and walking away followed shortly by some of the night maidens who went straight to go carry out their orders to patrol the castle

Reina shot a glare at odric and stuck her tongue out childishly... ok the childishness was atleast part of what was programmed into Reina as she then looked up at brand and smiled “is there anything I can do for you master? The maidens and my familiars will be enough for a patrol” she was blushing lightly, her kneeling had put her head level with brands lap... and there was plenty to confirm about the now very realistic vampire queen in front of brand, aswell as brands own body
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:28 am

"Um...not at the moment," Brand said. "I...need to change into my gear. Just in case. I'll meet you in the outer hall in a half hour. The safety of our home is paramount right now."

Holy crap...did he ever have some big shoes to fill. His own character writeup was practically Rated M for Manly. Confident to the point of cocky, a master carouser and all around ladies man...but the real Brand was anything but. And the look Reina was giving him made him nervous.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:44 am

Reina listened and stood “if master wishes to put on his gear I shall help, I am your personal maid after all” this was a fact brand had been made aware of once, but since Reina was relegated to the throne room and the hall outside it (and the fact that in game he could swap gear instantly, a fact no longer true here) she had went unused for that purpose so it wouldn’t be strange if brand forgot
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Sun Apr 14, 2019 12:19 am

"Uh..." Brand said wittily. "Yeah. Of course. Come with me, then."

It felt really strange walking so easily out of the Hall of Knights and to his own personal quarters. His personal room, as the Guildmaster, was the largest and got the most perks...in-game it was the place from where he could edit any function of the base as his guild accumulated points and rewards to expand and decorate it.

Along one wall hung banners of defeated enemy guilds...there had been so many that Brand had been forced to delete all but the really big or memorable wins. The rest of the room was positively luxurious. Like a five star hotel with a fantasy medieval theme. And here and there were trophies from grand quests. His personal armory had been represented in game by a simple wardrobe, but since it contained no less than six suits of enchanted armor and a couple dozen rare and legendary weapons, it manifested here as an entire room attached to his own. The wardrobe was there, containing day to day clothing for different occasions, many won through special events. There were a few paintings here too...screenshots taken in-game of particular vistas and guild members. Including Artoria.

He tried not to gawk at the place.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Sun Apr 14, 2019 2:39 am

Reina followed him, staying a set distance behind him and remaining silent and stoic as they walked, if brand didn’t know better and her eyes weren’t looking around occasionally brand might have thought she went back to being like the npcs were before.

Upon entering brands room Reina walked right over to the wardrobe, which had not created an extra room in the physical sense, and tapped it a little window opening in front of her listing items, all the items he had stored in it, after some careful swiping of the list she found what she wanted and tapped it two times then closed the menu and opened the wardrobe pulling out brand’s highest quality gear, atleast that he kept stored in the wardrobe, and brought it over to set it on the bed, then walked over to brand and began working to remove his current attire with a smile not saying a word even as she worked so quickly and efficiently.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Sun Apr 14, 2019 6:05 pm

Brand had gotten used to being dressed and undressed by his time in the hospital. He just sort of let himself mentally check out while she did her job...until he got a look at himself in the mirror.

Oh. My. God. I look like a silver-scaled Superman!

This revelation snapped him out of his reverie as he became aware that a pretty girl was...touching him. Pleasantly. All over. And his body was trying to display the appropriate salute.

Oh god, that works too!
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Sun Apr 14, 2019 7:24 pm

Reina noticed his bodies salute and licked her lips, but did nothing else as she continued her work, though she wasn’t above playing, brands orders earlier held a strong sense of urgency... and she wouldn’t stand for it if she fulfilled his sexual needs at such an inappropriate moment.

Soon enough she finished removing the last of brand’s gear and began systematically putting on the gear she got out, the armor he had worn before was one with visual design as it’s main focus and was not battle ready armor, but the armor she was dressing him in? It was his strongest set of gear, items that held a wonderful appearance (though paler then his showy armor) and had high stat boosts and embedded passives befitting the effort he had poured into obtaining it once she placed it ally hough she frowned and looked around hesitantly “umm the sword for this set isn’t in the wardrobe master... do you... do you wish for me to retrieve you the supreme ones greatest blade?” She asked looking up at him, the blade she spoke of was a one handed sword that the guild had foiled for almost two years with countless hours of blood, sweat, and tears to gather all the highest quality materials they could to produce a single powerful blade, the physical symbol of their guilds greatest achievement, the guild weapon... not a blade that should be touched by a lowly npc of the guild, even Reina!
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Sun Apr 14, 2019 8:30 pm

”Take me to it, Brand said, trying to pretend that his pants weren’t straining. ”I won’t run the risk of the blade harming you.”

Brand wondered if the IM system somehow worked. He held a hand to the side of his head.

”Odric, can you hear me?” he said.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Sun Apr 14, 2019 10:14 pm

Reina blinked but nodded “understood master” she then turned and walked to the room exit leading the way for him

Instant messaging in the games used a spell called [message] and had required the user to select a name in their menu when they used the spell, though they could use it to reach a nearby player without designating a specific target but that could sometimes cause problems, fortunately minus a visible menu the spell seemed to work the same way in.. wherever they were.

Odric would answer “yes sir, I do believe even if I were to suddenly go deaf, you would be the first to know it my lord” he replied dryly while remaining polite in tone “as far as I can tell sir, our surroundings is nothing but open grass plains... there seems to be a small forest in the far distance, however that is the only thing of note I have seen thus far”

This would strike brand as being very odd, their guild base was initially located on a small island that was covered in trees set in the middle of a large lake, a very different location then what odric has just described
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:11 am

A panic attack was suppressed an instant after it began. Brand's mind's cleared somehow and he found himself able to think more clearly.

"Understood," he rumbled in a lower tone. "Please have Merlin meet me in the Hall in about ten minutes and prepare our fastest scout units. I want the region around us mapped out and secured as soon as possible. Instruct them that contact with any locals is cautionary...but they are free to come to the aid of those who might need it. If there are locals, it might be best if we got on their good side."Once my meeting with Merlin is done, I will want to speak to all command staff.

He followed after Reina, keeping his eyes on her shoulders and noting the directions she was taking him.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:13 pm

Odric listened then quipped back “Reina is with you yes? She would be better at alerting the guardians then me currently, I lack a means to speak to them long distance through a [message] while I am outside of the castle” with that he ended the message, he never lost his respectful tone with brand

Reina lead him down a path brand was quite familiar with that lead towards the round table meeting hall, had more of the guild been logged in at the end the meeting room would’ve needed to be used instead of the throne room for their last gathering but as the conversation with odric ended Reina smirked “oh my little brother, aren’t you being quite the naughty boy ordering your big sister around?” She stopped and snapped her fingers, a moment later ten figures appeared seemingly materializing from thin air, their hair styles differed but all the woman had the exact same body build and a white dress, brand would know these to be the servants that personally tended Reina, reina’s vampire brides, even in a group of ten in game their stats were nothing to even remotely concern even a high level player, but now? Well, they were vampires and it clearly showed “go tell the guardians to gather in the throne hall, though ask Merlin to meet master brand at the meeting hall first, do not delay” she commanded them, the night maidens worked under Reina, but they were simply a different rank of maids, reina’s vampire brides however were being that lived to serve her directly like slaves... for this reason Reina could order the brides around in ways she could not order the night maidens.

With that order given though Reina resumes walking to the meeting hall “Little Brothers are such a pain to deal with don’t you think master?”
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:46 pm

Brand smirked ironically.

"My little brother and I do not get along, I'm afraid," Brand said truthfully. "Somewhere along the line he and I ran out of things to talk about. And then one day I couldn't talk at all and...that was that. So I suppose I envy your relationship."

His brother had not handled the attack on his big brother well, and he discovered he could not relate to the fear that had crippled him. He had gone on to live his own life...and in truth had done well enough for himself. Brand was actually rather proud of him. But he could never say so.

They stopped in front of the armory.

"The sword is here?" he asked.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 9:15 pm

Reina frowned “no... it’s in the meeting hall master, you and the other supreme ones displayed it on the wall... did you forget?” She asked as she kept walking past the armory and stopped in front of the meeting hall entrance opening it to reveal a large round room, the walls held various paintings, each one displaying a different creature or group of creatures, all boss monsters brand and other guild members had fought in Yggdrasil if he recalled right, the only notable thing in the room itself besides the wall decorations was a large round table with a large number of chairs surrounding it, and directly behind the chair brand sat in normally, stabbed into a stone style display was a glittering white longsword with 9 gems embedded into the surface of the blade, each one a magic orb with a spell sealed inside it, if brand recalled they were useful generic high level spells, it was the only truly unique item that has existed in Yggdrasil and in the hands of Brand’s guild, the guild also held several world items that were one of a kind, but that was a totally different case then this single blade.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:16 pm

”It would appear so,” Brand said as he approached the sword. ”Well. Here we go.”

Brand stepped forward and set his hand on the weapon. He could feel the incredible, game-breaking power of the blade. It was almost breathtaking. The work he and his guild had put into it no less impressive. He took a breath and easily drew the sword from its place. Instantly the sheath of the sword appeared on his back. Brand sheathed the weapon in one smooth motion, as thought he had done it a hundred times.

Merlin was due any moment. He took his seat at the head of the table to wait.

”So...” Brand said to Reina. ”Um...lovers? Forgive me but...I’m not recalling...um...gods but this is awkward. Just tell me about...us.”

Maybe he should get to reading the flavor texts of the npcs more.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:45 pm

Reina watched him draw the sword, each gem’s spells had a recharge time in between their uses, but in truth Reina didn’t know what spells was in the orbs on the blade, that information was something only the supreme ones knew, it wasn’t hers or any of the other npcs place to know those things.

At his question she blinked and smiled “yes master, I love you from the bottom of my heart, not just as the supreme one I serve... but as a male that I would happily give my body to master” she stepped to stand beside him and was about to lean in to kiss him but stopped as the door swung open

In walked a gorgeous woman with a slim but voluptuous figure covered by an off shoulder white dress that accented her breasts, her face obscured by a pink veil attached to a gold tiara and her long curled pink hair reaching her waist in the back, in her right hand was a staff with a gold heart piece on one end of it, this woman was Merlin, court mage npc and one of the guardian npcs however she simply looked at Reina with a smile then brand and gave a slight bow “you called for me your majesty? I am sorry if I am interrupting your fun” she said in a voice that even when speaking normally held a mystical feel to it.

Reina frowned and stopped back, she certainly wasn’t lacking in assets herself but compared to Merlin.. well she might aswell be as unappealing as can be.
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby Whitebrand » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:51 pm

"Merlin," Brand said. "I asked you here to give you mixed news and instructions. The other guild members are gone. You are now the sole master mage of the Fortress. The tools of my comrades, the libraries of our mages, and the responsibilities that come with them are now yours. It will be a heavy burden. but I believe you have more than earned it.

"I want you to utilize the scrying tools left by your former masters and map the surrounding countryside, just as my scouts are. I want to know about the local populations, if any, and whether or not they pose a threat to us. Will you be able to do this?"
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Re: The Shields of Yggdrasil (Whitebrand and tigra)

Postby tigra9 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:28 am

Merlin listened to brand and smiled “thank you for your trust in me your majesty, I wil not disappoint you” she then put a hand on her chin thinking “yes I can handle mapping the area through scrying, but it will take time” she looked at Reina “Reina could I borrow the aid of your familiars to speed up the scrying?”

Reina nodded “of course, I already have my bats outside of the castle, feel free to use them” this would be unusual, in game familiars only responded to their masters commands and save for fighting one it was impossible for a different player to interact with the familiars yet here this pair of girls was talking casually about being able to do something so different. That said Reina walked over to Merlin and unsheathes a blade she had in the arm guard of her outfit and pricked her finger to make it bleed before holding it out for Merlin who lifted her veil enough and took reina’s bleeding finger into her mouth sucking on it a bit before Reina pulled her hand back the cut already gone without a trace

Merlin turned her attention back to brand “if that is all your majesty desires of me I will go get right to work on it and leave the two of you alone”

Reina spoke “yes please do before my annoying brother comes back” she voiced her opinion with a displeased look as she walked back over to stand next to brand
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