The old man was proud of Alisdair, he watched with honor as he approached the far side of the room where Maggot already stood. Maggot showed Alisdair no emotion for fear of insulting him. Now he could only hope that Conall would come to the same decision. Maggot feared the consequences of anything leaving this place save the one sword they came for.
"You make a fine argument Alasdair but I do not agree. There have been too many tricks and traps for us to believe that such a powerful item as a holy avenger is left unguarded in this room. I cannot explain why if it is a gift from Odin as you claim that I, his sole Knight-Cleric, get no indication of such. We made a pact before entering this room and to that pact we should remain firm." Cor thought a bit. "I suppose we, the clerics, could all cast augery and see what answers we receive. This would take some time and would still be subject to doubt due to the influence of this room, especially in the eyes of the non-believers. So I fear even that would leave us in exactly the same predicament we are now. There is simply no failsafe way to validate the sword. So in the end we have no choice but to hold the pact and leave the sword." Cor's face showed that this was not an easy decision.
Posted on 2010-11-03 at 12:15:47.
Steelight Sage of the Realms Karma: 44/9 1024 Posts
"Try your Augury Cor. I believe this is a chance worth taking. And remember, you are not the only one whom the All-Father has blessed with his power." Alasdair sad smile grows at the friendly reminder. (sad at the thought of leaving so powerful a weapon against the forces of evil behind) "Perhaps you are correct and it is not a direct gift from Odin. But that does not diminish the good it can do in the hands of one of his holy knights."
"As I have said, I am willing to take hold of this weapon myself. I will take the risk if it is to be taken. I have given my oath, and you have all heard it. I will hold to the decision of the group. Though I must voice once again that leaving this blade behind is undoubtedly a grave mistake. So cast whatever spells either arcane or divine that will satisfy you. Do whatever you must to verify the truth of the words I have spoken, and to validate the honest intent with which I spoke them. Then, and only then, should a final decision be rendered."
Alasdair continues to stand beside the others at the far end of the room... waiting, and hoping that honesty and good will prevail in the minds of his friends.
Conall entered the room standing side by side Cynil, as he had planned, and as the group had planned to pass through the room. Knowing what was lying behind the door, he tried his best to avert his eyes. However, as he looked to make sure Cynil was okay, he caught a glimpse of the sword lying on the throne that caught his eye, and caused him to stop in his tracks. That sword was not an evil sword like the others had claimed. No, that was a holy sword. And a holy sword was one that could be used well in the hands of one such as him. Or Alasdair... But mostly him.
However, as he made a move to retrieve it, Cor stepped in front of him, soon joined by Kenji. They wanted to hinder him from moving towards the sword, wanting to leave it there.
"Cor, ye be mad. You know that there is no foul presence coming from this sword, you can feel it in your bones. I can feel the holy radiance pulsing through my blood like my heartbeat as I even stand in its presence. I have even reached out with my divine sense, trying to detect evil, and I find the sword to be holy. The sword itself is real, and if you should stop me from retrieving it, you would be a few ores short of the blacksmith's workshop. Follow Alasdair's advice, use your augury. But know that this sword is potent and benign. And in the best interest of the party, it shall leave with us."
Conall's gaze doesn't waver from the pair standing before him. Thinking that they may be too suspicious, he prepares to seek magical assistance, though it may be ineffective. He does nothing yet, just gauges the reactions, but is more than prepared should push come to shove to pull just the help he needs from his repertoire.
The enchantress stood silently listening to the argument over the sword. Both Alastair and Connal seemed determined to keep the so called divine blade. In her mind no course could be more foolish. This place was riddled with tricks and trails so great as to rival that of even the most devious of the faery realms. She could be silent no longer.
Stepping forward Siréne regarded the holy warriors cooly, "Listen now to the words of one who knows the power of the arts of trickery. For nearly two centuries I have drawn power from the unseen world and have used that magic to bend the mind to my will. Temptation is greatest when the object of desire is true, that does not lessen the peril at all. We have seen time and time again that the trials of this place are meant to trick us. It may well be that the sword is truly a divine blade forged to aid the forces of all that is good and light but we know not what consequences will befall us should we take the blade from this place. A wizard of incredible power made this place to guard the very blade we still seek, that and that alone is the purpose."
"Think for a moment. The door sealing this chamber was well guarded for a reason. Alasdair you have told us that in your vision you saw a blade calling out to you, trying to seduce you. From your very vision we have all agreed that whatever lay in this room would try and tempt us with whatever we desire most. The very fact that you paladins both desire this blade tells me we must leave it. Beware of your desire."
"I see no need to consult our gods with auguries and questions. The answer is already clear, we must leave that sword behind."
The enchantress paused a moment to regard Alastair, "My friend you claim to have one of the strongest minds among us. I would remind you that even the strong can fall victim, or have you so quickly forgotten our time together? Need I remind you that I found you abandoned and near dead with no memory of who you were, not even your name. No my friend, strong though your mind may well be it is not invulnerable. We must keep to the pact and leave the sword."
With those final words Siréne once again grew silent. She remained ever aware, although she trusted Alastair to honor the pact should they all agree it must be upheld she had no such trust in Connal. He was young and bull headed. Magic rose in her unseen as she watched the paladin, should he move to take the sword she had no problem with taking the choice away from him.
"Well said lass. If I am not mistaken the count currently stands as two 'ayes' from the paladins and four 'nays' from Sirene, Maggot, Kenji and myself. If the rest of you would be so kind as to voice your opinion we can get past this and on with the true mission at hand,"
Posted on 2010-11-03 at 23:26:16.
Steelight Sage of the Realms Karma: 44/9 1024 Posts
Seeing through Conall's intent he once again readies himself to interrupt any castings and prevent his fellow paladin from doing anything foolish. Seeing his intentions he began to focus his mind, and search his comrade's mind for any trace of outside influence.
"I did not say I was invulnerable. None of us are. But to leave an ally here for fear of it is simple ignorance. An Augury with Odin would prove the truth in my words. I respect your opinion enchantress, but I must sill advise against it. That being said however, I will still suffer the decision of my comrades. Conall, I suggest you do the same."
Posted on 2010-11-04 at 02:07:49.
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
"Don’t touch that sword! It may be all good and truly a holy relic of you Odin, but you promised and must keep that promise you made or by that act break you word sworn by you and by that Odin , you are his paladin.” Cynil called out,
“Alasdair, it may be good and have no evil but the very act of picking it up might cause a trap to spring. I dislike the arrangement of five unlit candle like the points of a pentagram.”
“Another way might be found after we all get out of here safely first. Perhaps Conall can come back in for that sword if he wants it. Or we can try fetching it to us from outside the room. IF it is a trap none of us well be inn the room that way.
“Conall come with me now.” Cynil moves over toward Conall entreating him to come away for now. If that doesn't work she will go to him and try to lead him away to the exit.
“Lets get to the exit.”
SIréne listened to paladin's words and sighed. He spoke to her so formally now. Once they had been true allies, true friends. That was before his memories returned. It seemed now that he had forgotten it all. It was she, not Odin, who had brought him back from death. They had not spent long together but she had found not only the path to the Lady's will in him, she had found a friend.
Siréne missed the nights when he had asked her of the Goddess. It had been the Lady that bore him out of hell, his own words had told her this. Yet since his memories returned Alastair seemed to have forgotten this. He now called her enchantress like a cold title. She had grown tired of this. Since the paladin had regained his memories he he treated her like nothing more than another member of this group. Once they had talked under the stars and Siréne missed that.
Still wary of Connal the she elf moved close to Alastair, "Enchantress?"
The word echoed from her lips in a sorrowful whisper, far more sorrow than she had ever let a human hear in her voice. It was time to reclaim their friendship, time that he heeded her counsel.
"Why do you give me such a title?" the enchantress spoke the words and laid a copper hued hand on the knight's chest.
"Once you placed the trust of your very soul in me. Why do you doubt me now?"
Ignoring the gaze of the others, even Althena, Siréne moved in closer to the paladin. So close she could feel the warmth of his breath and knew he could feel hers.
"Fear not my friend. I do not ask you to forsake your lady, a love between us could never have been. No," the elf spoke in a soothing tone. "Rather I ask you to remember our time together. The time before we walked into these caves, the time before you regained your memories."
Siréne moved in closer letting her body rest against the human man's. He had once trusted her wholly and completely, it was time he did it again. The raven haired elf let her body press into the human's feeling the cold of his armor against her despite her disgust of it.
"Do you remember," Siréne began softly. " Do you remember what I called you?
The elf spoke the word and let it echo in the room before continuing her soliloquy. "Do you remember when I gave you that name? Do you remember the many nights we talked?"
SIréne let her body press closer the man. She could feel the rhythm of his breath and let hers' follow. Looking up with incandescent eyes she let her gaze fall into his.
"I followed you into this cavern. I placed my soul's trust in you. Will you not give me the same trust? Please Allanan. Please heed our council and leave the sword."
The magic of the unseen world still flowed through Siréne. Yet still wary of Connal she held onto it. Still she let her focus lay on the other paladin. Her paladin. And she hoped he would heed her words.
"Well Alasdair, with Cynil now joining with those who wish to leave the sword we have 5 votes to leave it be. Since there are 10 of us there is no way to have a majority vote to take it. We could have a tie but if that is so we should then default to the origional plan. It seems the die has been cast. Tis time to continue our journey. Connal if ya please lad, make your way to the exit door."
Cor waited for Connal's reaction. He stood ready to block Connal from the sword physically if necessary and the words to hold person were close upon his lips.
Posted on 2010-11-04 at 13:08:06.
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
"Keep your Word Paladin." Rayne counseled. "If your need is so great.Come back after we are out safely if YOU must, but I expect you to keep your word that you promised us that had slowed them. You are a paladin you swore oaths to the Deity and to us. Would you fail them both with one action that breaks you promises? If so I have misjudged you greatly." She moved over across the room.
She now waited with the others who had already crossed. Turned back slightly toward the small group near the sword.
"If you senses have been compromised you do not know the truth of what that sword truly is. It may not be the trap itself but it might trigger the trap You risk us all for you desires and especially Cynil. "Think clearly Paladin are you ruled by passions and not reason."
Posted on 2010-11-04 at 16:49:49.
Steelight Sage of the Realms Karma: 44/9 1024 Posts
"I have not forgotten Siréne." He says as he steps away from his friend, taking her hands in his. "Just as you have not forgotten where my loyalties lie. As I have said I will follow the decision of our friends. But, as so many of you have disagreed with decisions I have made, I reserve the freedom to disagree with those of the group. I will not sow dissension however. Such a thing has harmed out bonds enough." He looks to Cor, releasing Siréne's hands slowly and softly. "It has been decided." Hand resting on his blade he strides back into the room and stands beside Cor and Kenji, between Conall and the blessed sword. Slowly he places his hand on Conall's shoulder.
"If it is Odin's will, my friend, we, you and I shall return for this weapon. Keep your honor, as our friends have helped me keep mine. Let it go for now."
Alasdair faces him squarely, with no room for argument or debate. His mental powers still searching for any sign of outside influence, and if found, trying to free his friend from them.
"Look around you. You have trusted your life to each and every person in this room. As have I. As have we all. As Siréne said, trust in them now... as I do."
Maggot watched the interaction between Sirene and Allanan the Lost. He gave a slight whisper over his shoulder, ‘Yes I see this and yes about that too. I am not dead you are.’
It was then Cor spoke and Maggot cleared his throat and regains some form of composer about himself. As Cor stated numbers the old man held up fingers and counted then whispered, ‘he’s right you know.’
Then the Lady Rayne approached the door and the group who waited by it. Maggot again gave a smile, “Nicely spoken.”
It was then Alasdair the Found moved back toward the center of the room and stood with those who wish to protect Conall from the sword. He spoke to Conall and only time would tell if his words fell upon deaf ears.
As all stood and waited for a reaction from Conall Maggot took a step forward and stood as if he stood before a King. He spoke with respect and understanding, “Conall Glendower of the House Glendower hear me Maggot the Unkept, Story teller to the poor, Once a diplomat to far off Kings and Barbarian Chieftains alike. If you take this thing that you feel you desire you will have broken your word and your honor will be no longer. A Paladin without honor is not a Paladin at all. If you are no longer a Paladin this thing becomes to you nothing more than a giant tooth pick to throw your face upon after a good meal. By taking it you will have also tainted the sword. By your actions this sword will always be known as ‘The Honor Taker’. No Paladin will ever reach for it again. Leave it, walk the rest of your days on the earth as a Paladin and not some slave to what you could have been. A sword does not make the man, his heart does. Liston to those who hold you close to the heart, come walk the path that we know your heart can walk.” Maggot hoped a voice of reason would seal the deal and bring Conall and the rest of his companions through this hard choice.
Kenji's eyes lock with Conall's as the man appears to be preparing to go against the wishes of all those around him... with such pleas from friends and even loved ones.. Kenji believes the man must be under evil influence to still attempt to get to the sword.
Seeing the resolve in the man's eyes and noticing a slight tension in his body .. giving away the fact that he is preparing for some action.. the Samurai makes one last plea of his own.
"Conall.... my friend." Kenji says.. his normally emotionless voice containing a hint of pain, "do not do this.... I do not wish to harm you... but the group has spoken and you have given your holy vow... do not break it over a mere object."
The Samurai was prepared and perfectly willing and able to defend against any attack that Conall might seem fit to launch in order to obtain the object of his desire.
"Easy lad, he is still one of us so no killing him. Grapple him, shove him back or knock himm unconcsious if ya have to but no killing or major wounding if ya please." Cor whispered to Kenji. He was well aware of the damage his strange friend could inflict.