Explorers of Ariqua. Rated R
Posted 20 February 2013 - 01:15 PM
It was another day in the town of Niobia, with its stone, fortified walls patrolled by City Guards who ever-vigilantly watched for danger. The ground had been razed, flattened for several metres around the town to make it difficult, if not impossible for attackers to sneak up. And it gave plenty of room for the Guardian Contingent and their magnificent dragons to swoop down and maneouver if need. After the razed area the land was enveloped in thick jungle and rainforest.
Inside Niobia it was a safe and civilised place. The streets were wide and clean, and the buildings' quality reflected the Quarter it was in and the wealth of the inhabitant. The town continued to expand and new Quarters were constantly being built, physically seperated by the stone walls that had once served as the town's border before a new expansion. Every month it seemed, new ships from Sandesina and Dhaska landed at the wide, sheltered, natural harbour, unloading new colonists eager to carve their bit of fortune out of the new land. The population was currently at around 150 although the number increased nearly every month.
In the centre of Niobia was the Market Quarter where most of the shops, stalls and trade was conducted. Adjoining that was the Royal Quarter where the Arl, the Dhaskan Representitive and the nobles lived. That quarter was forbidden to all but Sandesinan and Dhaskan citizens. In the far edge of the town was the Port and Industrial Quarter where the miners brought in the ore from the local Niobian mine to be processed and shipped back to Sandesina/Dhaska. And finally the Residential Quarter where most of the citizens lived.
Leading through the centre of the Market Quarter, and the middle of the Residential Quarter was the Great Road. It lead out through the main gates and out into the jungle. A stone road forcibly carved out of the jungle. The Great Road only lead to two places. The Niobian mines and the Zapiyan Tribal village of Koncora. The Koncora tribe were friendly to the Niobians and was the only Zapiyan tribe to openly engage in trade with Niobia.
On this day, however, Elizabeth Cousland and a small group of her Voyager crew were a couple miles out of Niobia, preparing to leave the Great Road and begin officially charting a route to a second Zapiyan village that was known to the inhabitants, but had never been officially mapped. That, was Elizabeth's job today...
Posted 20 February 2013 - 01:28 PM
Kylen stopped when Elizabeth did and nodded when she told them that they would be heading west into the jungle from here. He was dressed in a light green tunic, boots and leather armguards. He wore a backpack containing his medical kit, rations and water across his back. He was armed with a revolver and a shortsword holstered at his belt but nothing else. His posiiton was in the centre of the group and he did little but accompany the other Voyager crewmembers on their missions and treat them for any injuries that they might incur. So far they had proven to be a reliable and capable group and he hadn't had much to do other than tend to minor cuts or bites from the jungle's insect denizens. Still, Kylen was being paid well for his services and didn't object.
Posted 20 February 2013 - 02:49 PM
"Oh, isn't it just lovely." Aveline stated as she pulled out her machete. Since she knew she would be going through the jungle she'd replaced her sword with the machete and carried a pistol and knives instead. She wasn't being entirely sarcastic when she said that, she found the jungle had its own beauty, different from the tropical beauty of the Salarans, but beautiful nonetheless. She was glad she'd tied her long, wavy hair back though, to keep it out of the way. She followed Elizabeth, Tevyn and Kylen as they started hacking their way west, only occasionally hacking herself since they were making a pretty good trail to follow. She mostly kept an eye out for any danger.
Demiriz and his band of hunters were tracking a large boar through the jungle that would provide some much-needed meat for their village, when he stopped and listened, putting up a hand for the others to also stop. He could hear a faint noise that wasn't natural and he glanced around warily. It sounded like someone hacking their way through the jungle, so he motioned his hunters in the direction the sound was coming from, and they took to the trees, moving from tree to tree as easily as monkeys themselves as they headed to see what was going on.
Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:07 PM
She also carried a crossbow strapped to her back, but it didn't belong to her. She carried it for Damien.
She pushed away stray branches of the thick trees the other had already cut down, winding her way through the trail. The small pack on her back moved with her, and she felt the orange from her family's store bump into her lower back. Just thinking of the tropical fruit her family provided to the crew since she joined them two months ago began to make Jhandra hungry as the mapping of this new area began.
Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 20 February 2013 - 06:29 PM.
Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:28 PM
He'd taken his full weretiger form after they'd left the view of Niobia the better to track for the group. Although most of them were alert with good senses, his animal sight, hearing, and smell were just a little better. It was now that he heard and smelled strangers up ahead. His long whiskers twitched in agitation. Where they were he couldn't quite tell, but they were all around. Doubling back, Damien made for the group. He smelled Elizabeth first...after two years he could find her practically anywhere...and gave a low, familiar growl of warning as he approached.
Changing easily into his Hume form, Damien stuck his head out from behind a large bush. His long hair hung around his pleasing, angular face. He wiped a hand over his small mustache and goatee to wipe away the sweat that now formed. Remaining partially hidden due to his state of undress, he held out a hand to Elizabeth. "There's people further ahead," he warned her. "I'm not sure how far, I turned back to warn you when I sensed them. Should I keep going?" he asked.
He hadn't been in his beast form for that long, so he could return if necessary. Although he always felt the pull of the beast inside him, Damien could resist the call for violence for quite some time.
Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 20 February 2013 - 06:59 PM.
Posted 20 February 2013 - 11:04 PM
He nodded his acknowledgement and melted back into the jungle. Elizabeth raised her voice to the others in her group. "Damien just alerted me we're not alone out here. There's another group of people nearby. Let's stay alert." She cautioned them. Then she resumed hacking her way through the undergrowth again after taking a few sips of water. She had only hacked a few more metres before she heard a rustling nearby that no animal could make. Just as she turned to look, she caught sight of a rough-looking unshaven Hume lunging at her with a short, carved wooden stick. She raised her machette to defend herself but nevertheless he slammed into her and they tumbled headlong to the ground. She felt her machette dig into somethign soft and squishy as they fell. Meanwhile, a mixture of roughly dressed Humes and Elviri began attacking the other members of her team.
Kylen stopped when Elizabeth signalled for them to stop, and continue after she warned them about other people in the forest. As a precaution he drew his revolver and held it comfortably and ready as they continue on. It wasn't long before they were attacked by the group of Humes and Elviri. He assumed that they were either bandits and slavers-either way they had to be dealt with. Kylen nimbly sidestepped a burly Hume armed with a club, lifted his revolver and shot him in the side as he turned back to face him. The sound of the revolver going off startled nearby birds into flight and animals into fleeing. But before Kylen could get another shot off, a wiry Elviri male grabbed at his revolver and the two began a pulling and pushing match to get control of the weapon.
Nick lounged comfortably on the padded seat that had been nailed to the floor of the Bridge of Voyager. Today it was his turn to be on duty. As the ship was long-term docked at the Niobian port, two thirds of the crew were off duty and on shore leave. They rotated regularly so everyone had a fair turn at remaining aboard the ship to keep it guarded and maintained, and shore leave in Niobia. He would have joined Elizabeth, Aveline and the others on their excursion today but it was his turn to sit on the bridge on command duty. He didn't expect anything to happen-nothing had happened for the two months they had been docked. And so it was that Nick was reading a particularly epic romance novel. He didnt normally go for such books, but his relationship with Aveline kept changing everything. He was even almost enjoying the narrative as he lounged, and read.
Edited by Mikoto, 20 February 2013 - 11:12 PM.
Posted 21 February 2013 - 12:45 PM
Then they'd barely started hacking their way through the underbrush again when Aveline heard the unnatural rustling all around them just before a group of dirty, foul-smelling Humes and Elviri attacked them. She barely had time to slash at one with her machete, making him back off before another was upon her, trying to force her to the ground by swinging a small club at her, which she'd managed to telekinetically throw from his hand before she brought her knee up as hard as she could into his crotch. While she watched him crumple to the ground in agony, holding himself where she'd kneed him, her danger sense warned her and she managed to twist around just as an Elviri swung a club meant to hit her in the back of the head, but she grunted in pain and stumbled backwards when it glanced off her shoulder instead. She managed to pull her pistol out of her belt after switching her machete to her other hand and she shot that one in the stomach before the first attacker managed to hit her hand with a club, making her cry out in pain and drop the gun.
Tevyn had already been wary as they were trudging and cutting their way through the jungle, so when Damien reported that he had sensed others in the jungle, Tevyn got even more wary. The warning was justified, however, as they were set upon by a dirty, smelly gang of Humes and Elviri. He assumed they must be slavers since they appeared to be trying to subdue them rather than kill them and take their belongings, but Tevyn wasn't going to be subdued so easily. He pulled his knives and started slashing out at the nearest filthy person to him. There wasn't really time to try to see how the others were doing, as they were outnumbered and all were busy trying to keep the attackers at bay.
Demiriz paused for just a second when he heard a loud noise, then the sounds of a large scuffle going on from the direction where he'd heard the hacking, so he motioned the others to speed up and he ran through the tree branches until he came upon a group of people being attacked by another group of people. The two groups could be easily distinguishable from the others, as the attacking group was filthy and smelly. If they'd tried to sneak up on his group, they'd have smelled them coming long before they heard them and would have taken to the trees.
He positioned himself on a sturdy branch, then readied his bow, he then nodded at the others before taking aim at one of the filthy attackers and letting the arrow fly, hitting him directly in the chest, showing the others which ones to target.
Posted 21 February 2013 - 05:17 PM
As another attacker jumped Rylan from behind he loosened his hunting knife and stuck it deep in to the unknown yet fragrant humanoid's thigh. He chastised himself for being distracted by an unfamiliar species of plant on the trail. Interesting things were certainly a peril of unexplored territory. His rifle swung round his body on its leather strap as the creature released its grip. it was too close quarters for his preferred weapon for its intended purpose but not for driving the butt of the rifle under the chin of the next Elviri that came at him with an intimidatingly large club. The next human that came at him from the front found his third weapon. A pistol drawn from its holster in his left hand put a bullet in his head before the Elviri hit the dirt. Even as he dispatched the enemies with a ruthless efficiency they seemed to keep coming.
Edit: Slight change in wording.
Edited by Balthamos, 22 February 2013 - 02:01 PM.
Posted 21 February 2013 - 07:06 PM
But then an arrow embedded in his chest and he collapsed before he could reach her. She stomped down on the foot of her attacker hard and when his grip loosened, kicked him between the legs with her heel. That made him let go, so she spun with her machette and turned, slicing his throat open. With that attacker defeated, Elizabeth looked around and saw that most of the enemy group had fallen to a seeming hail of arrows and spears. Her team were finishing off the last remaining attackers. She followed the direction the arrows and spears up into the trees and spotted shapes in the trees that looked vaguely Hume shaped however the mixture of sunlight and shadow between the leaves made it difficult to tell. Zapiyans then, she decided after reviewing the evidence. She was glad they'd chosen to side with her and her team for they had a fearsome reputation when attacking from the treetops.
Kylen was surprised when the Elviri he was wrestling with for control of his gun suddenly collapsed and let go right after another gunshot rang out. He knew then that one of the team had helped him but he didn't know which one. When two Humes charged at him, one went down with a spear to the chest and the other he shot himself. Then he relaxed a little bit as most of the attackers were felled by spears and arrows. "Anyone hurt?" He asked.
Edited by Mikoto, 21 February 2013 - 09:13 PM.
Posted 21 February 2013 - 07:19 PM
Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:06 PM
Tevyn was glad to see that most of the attacking band had been disposed of, but who had shot all those arrows? He glanced towards Elizabeth and looked up in the trees, then he saw the branches move as a very large, mottle-skinned male descended and greeted her. He must have helped them then, so Tevyn sheathed his knives and waited to see what was going on.
When the last attacker fell dead, Aveline cradled her wrist. She hoped the damn thing wasn't busted and she kicked the dead body of the attacker who had clobbered it. She glanced around when she heard a soft 'thump' and yelped in surprise when a very large Zapiyan landed on the ground in front of Elizabeth. "Whoa...they move silently to be so big..." She whispered, then turned when she heard Kylen asking if anyone was hurt. "My wrist." She said, walking over. "One of those bastards clobbered it with a stick or something, it hurts like hell."
Posted 21 February 2013 - 11:18 PM
But the arrival of several strangers, Zapiyans, caught her attention. She'd talk to Kylen later about her injury, but for now wanted to know if it was these people who had helped them with the additon of their arrows.
Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 22 February 2013 - 12:01 AM.
Posted 21 February 2013 - 11:28 PM
Stepping out of the bushes from behind, he caught Jhandra's eye. She handed over his crossbow, nocked with one arrow with others were attached, as well as his spare arrows. He waited silently to find out who these people were, obviously Zapiyans, but were they really friend or foe.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 12:55 PM
Kylen blinked in surprise when a large Zapiyan jumped down in front of Elizabeth, but noted that his weapons were sheathed and there didn't seem to be any hostile intent in his manner, so the Elviri turned his attention to his job. Aveline got his attention first so he went over to her. "Okay, let's take a look at your wrist." He said with a reassuring smile as he unslung his pack and visually examined the wrist. Already it was starting to swell so he knew then that it was bruised, sprained, or possibly broken. Delicately he placed his hand loosely on the affected area and concentrated, summoning in the psionic energy and focusing it as a healing force on her wrist. He percieved that there was no break in the bone, just swelling and bruising. When Kylen was done the bruises had passed through several colours and were completely healed. "There." He said in satisfaction. "It'll be a little tender and easily bruised for the next day or so. Be gentle with it." He advised her. He then reached into his pack and drank a fruit juice that he'd added extra sugar to for a quick energy boost.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 01:34 PM
Tevyn relaxed once he was sure that the Zapiyans meant them no harm. He sat down on a nearby rock while Elizabeth and the apparent leader of the hunting party discussed things. He pulled out his flask and took another sip of water while he perused himself to see if he'd sustained any injuries and was relieved to see that it was limited to scratches and a few bruises that he could tend to himself.
Demiriz smiled down at the female when she smiled up at him and introduced herself. She looked very tiny and frail against his much-bigger bulk, but he liked what he saw. She seemed to be admiring him too, which didn't bother him at all. "I am Demiriz." He said by way of introduction. "Your noisy hacking and fighting disrupted our hunt, but that is okay. It was a relief to do away with one of the bands of people who keep attacking our hunting parties. If Ruhalia is the village you are looking for then I can show you where it is, it is not far."
Posted 22 February 2013 - 02:54 PM
As Jhandra turned towards him he noticed the cut above her eye. She turned to ignore and he sighed, he soaked a fresh cloth from the flask of salt water he carried and caught her attention with a hand on her shoulder. He pushed the wet cloth in to her hand, "Clean your wound" he instructed, "infections are a nasty way to die.". He acknowledged Damien's presence with a nod.
He turned away and examined the bodies of those he had killed. Carefully he searched them for anything of value. He found several packs of berries but wasn't sure if they were food or a sedative or a poison. As Elizibeth and the leader of the Zapiyans had their discussions while appreciating each other he kept his eyes on the surroundings.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 07:50 PM
Since it seemed Elizabeth and the seemingly friendly Zapiyans were getting along, and the crew was being invited to a village, Jhandra sought out Kylen. She showed the Elviri her cut and the blood-streaked cloth.
"Is it bad?" she asked. "It doesn't feel too deep, but I can't really tell."
She still kept her eye on their leader, but with everyone else so close the gray-skinned Salaran felt there wasn't much danger to Elizabeth.
Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 22 February 2013 - 07:51 PM.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:12 PM
Kylen smiled. "You're welcome." He turned to deal with the cut on Jhandra's forehead but saw that Rylan had aready done enough to prevent infection. Nevertheless he was glad when the Elviri hybrid came over for him to look at it. He examined the cut and shook his head. "No it's not bad. Head wounds tend to bleed a lot. Still, even though it's sterilized I'm going to close it up. No need for you to risk being exposed to infection unnecessaily when its so easy for me to fix." He explained as he put his hand over the cut, concentrated and healed it psionically. When he was done he nodded in satisfaction. "That's better." Then, Elizabeth had finished negotiating with Demiriz and it was time to be on their way again. He took a drink from his own flask then put his backpack back on. As they walked, with Elizabeth, Demiriz, and a female Zapiyan that had dropped down from the trees taking it in turns to hack their way through the undergrows, Kylen raised his voice so everyone in the group could hear him. "If any of you have broken skin or a cut, be sure to bring it to me or sterilize it with salt water. Out here, even a small cut can kill you" He warned.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:17 PM
Edited by Mikoto, 22 February 2013 - 09:18 PM.
Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:34 PM
Demiriz led the group through the jungle, hacking a path for them, until his sister Lyria dropped down and took her turn. He found this method of traversing the jungle to be inefficient, but these people didn't look like they could travel through the trees as he and his people did. He took over hacking when they were almost to the village, and it wasn't long before they were there, and he led them inside. "Welcome to Ruhalia." He said.
Aveline managed to use her good arm to hack away any stray branches in her way as they trekked through the jungle again. Now she could see how the Zapiyans could travel around without making trails, they ran through the trees like monkeys, and she could see the others of the hunting party scurrying through them and keeping watch while they made their much slower way through the underbrush. What she wouldn't give to be able to travel like that. After awhile, Demiriz stopped hacking and led them into a clearing, where there were dwellings built into the trees themselves and welcomed them to Ruhalia. "Wow." Was all she could say as she looked up. She'd heard about this, but she'd never been to the other village, so this was new to her.
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