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    Legend of Light Bringer


    Posts : 56
    Join date : 2015-09-07

    Legend of Light Bringer

    Post by Ryoshi on Sat Oct 17, 2015 9:38 pm

    Seth Strauss, the so-called 'ShadowHunter', climbed up the last few rocks and stopped, taking in the view. It was incredible. He was standing at the top of a mountain shrouded in snow. At his feet lay a valley in the shape of a rough, shallow cauldron, slowly filling up with the white snow falling gently from the dark, laden clouds above. A plume of vapor erupted from Seth's mouth as he caught his breath. Slowly, he turned on the spot and surveyed the surrounding landscape.
    "It's perfect." he said, the words becoming visible as another cloud of vapor. With that, Seth thrust his staff, a rod of roughly formed steel, into the ground to mark the spot. Over the last few months, Seth had been searching for a spot to build and found his dream guild. He had passed up dimly lit clearings in forests, prime real estate spots in brightly lit cities, even pieces of turf as close to the royal palace as you could legally build. None of the spots embodied the element of light, which was what Seth was striving for. But here, at the very top of a mountain, everything was cold and bright. The sparse amount of the light of the sun that managed to filter through the heavy clouds reflected off the snow, filling the cauldron with a brightness that wasn't harsh, as the cities had been, or sparse, as the forests had been, but all-present and radiant. It was the perfect location for his dream guild: Light Bringer.

    Over the next few weeks, Seth oversaw the carting of several tons of materials up the side of the mountain, helping out when needed. When all the materials were in place, he hired a team of builders to assist him in the creation of his guild hall. After a few months, it was done. A massive hall constructed of gleaming gold and marble, set solidly into the cauldron. Evenly spaced around the depression was a circle of marble and gold pillars. On top of each pillar was a brazier made of gold, holding enchanted fire that would burn forever more, casting their light over the mountains. Leading out of the circle of standing stones, facing the pathway recently hewn out of the mountainside, was a path carved of marble and inlaid with gold scrollwork. Straddling this walkway at even intervals were large post-and-lintel constructions of marble and gold fashioned after Torii gates. This walkway continued all the way up to the massive doors of the hall, but the line of gates terminated when it met the circle of marble pillars. The doors themselves were cast of gold and inlaid with delicate, intricate ivory scrollwork. Etched in the center of the paired doors was the mark of Light Bringer, which Seth designed himself, inlaid in emerald. The design was simple, yet elegant: a sunburst design circumscribed around a Celtic Cross, in which the arms of the cross where the letters L and B, repeated once, each transposed from the other by 90 degrees. It was from this design that the beautiful scrollwork on the doors seemed to radiate. The building in which the doors were set was just as grand: seven stories tall, fashioned after an elegant, antiquated manor.

    Seth breathed out heavily just before placing his hand on the doors, in the exact center of the carved mark, and pushed gently. The huge, grand doors swung smoothly on their oiled hinges, and Seth stepped into his guild hall for the first time as its Master. It was breathtaking. The doors opened up into an immense common room, the center of which was filled with tables and chairs. Placed against the far wall was the bar, stocked with a wide variety of liquor from all over the world. Placed against the other two walls were rows of doors, most of which lead to rooms. The floor plan was designed so that the rooms decreased in size in each successive floor, except for the seventh. The guild higher-ups, such as the aces and higher-ranked members, would have rooms on the ground floor. New members would have rooms on the sixth floor. He himself, as the Guild Master, had the largest and most opulently furnished room of them all on the seventh floor, which also held his office. A door next to the bar on the ground floor lead to the pool, half of which was enclosed, all of which was heated. There was also a collection of hot tubs, both indoor and outdoor, in the pool area. For the braver members, there was also a separate, smaller outdoor pool that was not heated. A door on the right wall of the ground floor lead to the arcade/casino, which was filled with all kinds of entertainment machines and game tables. Opposite that was the door that lead to the library, a vast room filled with an enormous amount of books and a sense of tranquility.

    "It's perfect." Seth said, echoing his statement of sixth months ago, just before he planted his staff in the rocks. Then, he had been wearing rough-spun robes of dark gray cloth, now he was wearing a white tunic with matching long pants while an elegant golden cloak, emblazoned on the back with the mark of Light Bringer in white threads, was swung about his shoulders. In his hand was a staff of white spruce wood, shod with gold and capped by a piece of gold molded to the shape of the cross-shaped centerpiece of the guild mark. Silently he traced the steps that he would follow for years: from the front doors, up six flights of stairs, and into his private suite. There, he leaned his staff against the wall just inside the door, swung his cloak from his shoulders and hung it up on a peg, removed his shoes then laid himself down on his huge bed, clothed with white sheets woven with gold scrollwork, bedclothes that matched those on every bed in the hall. Without even bothering to undress further or slip beneath the silken sheets, he fell fast asleep, enamored by the elegance of the room and building around him.

    Several days passed, each filled with travel as he visited surrounding towns and advertised his foundling guild. The morning of the seventh day, exactly one week after his hall was completed, Seth heard the soft bell-like sound that heralded a new arrival from his office. He sprang from his chair in excitement and rushed down the stairs. He had had the hall doors enchanted with a spell that would recognize newcomers and broadcast a sound into the entire building, alerting whoever was in it that someone new had entered. That day, the sound played for the first time. It was a few long minutes before Seth, clad in his official guild master attire, but sans his staff, swept elegantly into the common area. His sharp eyes quickly located the newcomer, a slight girl robed in rough, green, homespun fabric. Seth rushed over as fast as he could while still seeming elegant and professional, disguising his raw excitement.
    "Greetings. Welcome to the hall of Light Bringer. I am its master, Seth Strauss. How may I serve you?" he boomed as he approached, causing the girl, who had been staring around with wide eyes, to start with surprise.
    "Oh... My name is Serena." the girl said, stammering slightly. Seth was surprised with her seeming unwillingness to divulge her surname, but he did not show it.
    "Welcome, Serena." he said, giving a short yet grand bow. This made Serena flush slightly as she reciprocated his gesture with a brief nod.
    "I.. I have come here seeking membership." she said, stammering as she tried to mimic Seth's formal tone and diction. He chuckled and grinned when he noticed this.
    "You don't have to talk like that. I only do it to greet new people." he said, making the girl smile as well. "Anyway, if you came here to join, I am more than happy to let you."
    "Yes, I came to join. When I heard about Light Bringer, I could only think that it was the perfect guild for me." said Serena, looking somewhat saddened and awkward. She was about Seth's age, but she seemed somehow younger. This caused him to take pity on her and sit down, offering her a chair as well.
    "Tell me your story, Serena." he said as she sat across the table from him. She hesitated, then began to speak.
    "When I was born, I had a strong aura of magic around me. It was clear that I had potential, even from that moment. It was that potential that brought the Crimson Ones." At the mention of the Crimson Ones, she shuddered to a stop and buried her face in her hands.
    "The Crimson Ones?" Seth asked gently after a few moments.
    "The harbingers of the dark guild Scarlet Chaos. They came to my house. They wanted me, and my parents refused. They refused too many times. In the end... they broke into out house.. they slaughtered my parents and stole me from my bed. I was six years old." At the end of this phrase, her voice broke and she sobbed. In one swift movement, Seth slid off his seat, maneuvered around the table, stood in front of Serena and wrapped his arms around her. He held her for a long while until her sobs subsided.
    "Th-thank you..." she said, her breath hitching. It was a few moments before Serena made a slight move; the indication that she was ready for Seth to release her. He did so immediately, retaking his seat across from her. A few moments later, after her residual sniffles subsided, she continued her story in a broken voice.
    "The guild master, Klyn Crimson, he raised me. He trained me, helped me grow into my magic." At these words, Serena held out her hand. In an instant, a flickering, crimson flame danced above it. She then curled her hand into a fist, and the fire vanished. "For years, I trusted him and his cronies. Then, one day I overheard Crimson talking to his lieutenant. They were complaining about me and how I didn't have the right mentality for a dark mage. I heard Crimson say that... that they might have to kill me like they did my parents... When I heard that, something snapped inside me... Everything went dark, and when I could see again, I was standing in the center of a burning wasteland. I had lost control of my magic and destroyed everything. There weren't even bodies left behind... I had killed them all..." she said, her voice breaking as she tried to stifle a sob. Seth reached across the table and gently placed a hand on her upper arm. After a few moments, Serena looked up at him.
    "As you can see, I have plenty of reasons to hate dark guilds." she said, the light of determination flaring in her eyes. Seth nodded approvingly as he noticed it.
    "The thing is, Light Bringer isn't all about hating dark guilds. It's about second chances. It's about moving on, beyond the darkness of the past and into the light of the future. And for that reason, I believe that you are a good fit for my guild. Rise now, and dry those tears from your face. The past is the past, and it only hurts us to dwell on it. From this day forward, you will let the light within you guide you into the future." he said, his kind voice firing her with new determination. She nodded and stood, dashing the back of her hand quickly across her eyes. "Where would you like your mark, Serena?" he asked.
    "Right here." she answered, indicating the spot on her upper arm that Seth had gently gripped to comfort her. "In white. With a red outline." Seth nodded approvingly, then grasped his staff. Gently, he pressed the cap against the spot Serena had indicated, and the staff flared with light. When the light faded, the spot the staff had touched was marked with the emblem of Light Bringer, with the outline being the color of blood.
    "Welcome to Light Bringer, Serena." Seth said proudly, gazing at his first member.
    "Thank you... Master." she responded formally, smiling broadly.
    They spent the next half an hour walking around the guild hall, Seth giving her the tour of the grand building. Sometime during the tour, Serena had taken his hand in hers, blushing faintly. He barely even noticed. After the tour, he helped her settle into her new room on the sixth floor. That night, both fell asleep with wide grins fixed on their faces, and their thoughts fixed on the other.

    Over the next few months, new members trickled into the guild, and Seth and Serena grew closer and closer. Eventually, he named her his lieutenant and second-in-command. Soon after that, he disappeared for almost a year. Serena lead the guild in his place, her heart sore from his absence. Then he randomly reappeared in the common are of the guild one day, his eyes cold and dark. From that point onwards, he called himself Ryoshi Akuryo, and soon enough everyone began to as well. He never did explain what happened to him, but everyone could tell that it was traumatizing. In addition to his new distant attitude and his new name, he displayed new powers that he would not explain. His cold distance hurt Serena, but she waited for her chance. After a few weeks, she approached him and confessed her affection for him. She looked him directly in the eyes as she told him this, and she got to watch at whatever barrier there was in his mind, whatever was keeping him cold and distant, shatter. She almost wept for joy when she saw the old warmth and joy return to his eyes. That night, they shared their first kiss. It was a couple of years later that the entire guild, which was now quite large, attended their wedding.
    They lived happily together for nearly seven years, overseeing his guild together. Then, one night, tragedy struck.
    The emissaries of the dark guild Animus Sin came in during the night, bypassing the magical defenses with ease. Silently, they swept up the six flights of stairs, targeting the thing Ryoshi Akuryo, Guild Master of Light Bringer, held most dear: his wife Serena. Before anyone could react, they had her in their clutches and were dragging her, unconscious after a quick Sleep Spell, out of the room. Stricken with horror and shock, Ryoshi could only watch helplessly as his wife was taken from him.
    It was these events that dragged Light Bringer, a once peaceful guild, into a war. It's members were quickly trained in magical mass combat and soon became part of the vanguard, headed by none other that Ryoshi himself. His fury and grief over Serena's loss had driven him almost to madness, and he was more than eager to strike back at the guild who took her.
    It was a long time before Ryoshi and Serena saw each other again. Swept together by the momentum of a battle, Ryoshi and Serena, who had daringly escaped from her captors, shared a kiss despite the melee raging around them. Seconds later, an arrow fired from a vengeful Animus Sin member struck Serena in the back. Where once there had been a place of loving, joyful reunion was suddenly transformed into a place of death, of tragedy, and of horror. Serena died in Ryoshi's arms. Her final words echoed those she spoke only minutes after the mark of Light Bringer was emblazoned upon her arm: "Thank you, Master." Overcome by rage and grief yet again, Ryoshi blacked out in a surge of uncontrollable magic power. When he came to, he was standing in the center of a circle of destruction. Corpses and injured soldiers littered the ground around him, and trees were torn from the ground and tossed like so many discarded twigs. But Ryoshi paid no mind to the scene of chaos around him. He had eyes for only one thing: the still-warm body of his beloved lying still in his arms. Ignoring the raging battle, Ryoshi slowly retreated to a quiet hill and fell to his knees, weeping brokenly. It was a long time before Ryoshi was able to calm himself, clear his head, and rise once more to his feet. He carefully laid Serena upon the ground and wove a spell over her to give her a place of refuge against the tides of the battle. He then turned and waded back into the war, eyes blazing with fury. He angled directly for the mages of Animus Sin, intending to do as much damage to the dark guild as he possibly could. Unfortunately, the momentum of the brawl kept him from accomplishing his goal, and then suddenly the fight was over.
    After the battle, Ryoshi retrieved Serena's body and, accompanied by the whole of Light Bringer, retreated back to their hall. The next day, the grounds of the grand building bore witness to the most solemn occasion they ever had and ever will: Serena's funeral. Ryoshi wept once more, caring not that his members saw him and caring not what they thought of it.

    After that fateful battle, Light Bringer took no more part in the war. Despite being stricken by tragedy, Ryoshi made an effort to be a good, cheerful guild master, as he knew Serena would want him to, and soon enough, he had pushed past the grief. Light Bringer was back to its peaceful self, and forever more would make an effort to avoid, if not prevent, large-scale inter-guild conflict. Instead, it focused on spreading love, joy and hope, as Ryoshi founded it to. Ryoshi himself embodied those three traits, but he would never forget the horrors of war and the grief he felt at the loss of Serena. From that day forward, he swore to never let another person feel the same grief he had. And so Light Bringer carried on.

      Current date/time is Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:07 am