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Shadows of Ourselves

Darth Vectis

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[size=3]Azriath looked out the window, using his jacket sleeve to wipe at the grim that had started to gather on the old glass. The weather had degraded from its cloudy appearance to torrential downpour and was now just a mild rain, but it would pick up again as it always did. Being higher altitude, closer to the mountain range that when the sun was seen, created a great shadow to envelope everything below it, giving credence to the name of ShadowsTomb. He watched the water splash as it hit the harder surfaces, the puddles it created and the sound of it hitting their home. He let his own memories surface for just a few moments, going back to a childhood in a much warmer place, where the rain didnâ??t fall often. But when it did, he liked to put on his jacket and walk in the rain, taking his time as he felt energy invigorate him to push on with his day and sometimes with his life. He quickly pushed the memories away once more, time was not on their side and they needed to start getting everything in order. He pushed off from the wall, turning mid way through and started walking, making a few stops at every intersection to check the scratched symbols in the frame work.[/size]

[size=3]It had taken a lot of time, and many hands to make sure each path way was properly inscribed. The symbols were a simpler form of the same ones they used against the Thinners themselves. These ones designed to promote misdirection and in other areas barriers that could slow the Thinners down long enough to mount a proper offense. It had taken a Thinner attack to show them how little they had actually prepared for their arrival, and took several dead for them to know that they were all far from safe even with the barriers. Azriath was just pleased that everyone knew these symbols, knew the order they belonged in to protect themselves, it was enough for now to keep them alive just a bit longer. He moved on quickly, passing through the hallways until he reached the wooden plank that bared the door to his room. He pushed it aside and walked in, quickly going for the few items he would need for his own sake really. Quickly grabbing his Tac Tool and sliding it into the holster wrapped around is leg he then walked over to the far corner of his room, kneeling down and pushing on a piece of wall that gave way.[/size]

[size=3]Sliding it out of the way he reach in and pulled out a small chest, setting it down he opened the lid and pulled out some objects, one was a pentacle necklace that he quickly put on. A coin that was about the size of a penny, but was made of bronze and on one side had a skull with the lower mandible missing and tentacles spreading from the skull. The other side is a triangular pattern that overlaps over itself in a swirling shape, pocketing the coin he reached further in and pulled up a black cloth wrapped around something. He kept the object wrapped and tucked it into his waist band before closing the chest and stashing it back into the wall. He rose from his place and hastily slid the piece of wood to cover his doorway, turning quickly he rushed through the halls once more, almost running as he finally reached the pair of double doors that served as the entrance to the meeting hall. He pushed open one of the doors and let his eyes look around the large addition they had created from this room. The roof was vaulted here, and the room was wide giving it all the feeling of one of those courts of the Middle Ages. The makeshift bleachers they had created allowed for everyone in the chapter to witness and participate in the dealings. Azriath let his hands fall to his sides as he calmly walked toward the center of the chambers, he let his gaze shift about and seeing all the faces he knew so well at this point. Even the newest recruits he knew well enough to point them out of the crowd, being one of the Name Bearers made them all familiar.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Iâ??m glad you could finally join us, brother Azriath.â?[/b] The condescending tone was easy to pick up on, he looked to the source of the voice, though he truly didnâ??t need to look at him. The man was, in Azriaths opinion, and over sized moron who had the capability of a house broken puppy. Azriath kept his hard expression on, his eyes focused on man as he came clearer into view now. His oiled back black hair gleaming slightly in the ambient light of the cloud ridden day, his leather vest showcasing all of the muscles he had worked hard to crate for his image. But the one feature Azriath would have personally loved to tear from him was his constantly smug face; no matter the situation he held that face. The name he had chosen before forgetting his life was appropriate for his current style.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Brother Adonis, you shouldnâ??t speak out of turn. I wouldnâ??t want you to get swatted with a newspaper now.â? [/b]He saw the slight muscle twitch; a club at Adonisâ?? waist was ready for anything and he could see he was ready to go for it.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Enough.â?[/b] The command boomed through the room, the voice coming from the chair that rest in the middle of the room, behind the duel tables angled at either side of the chair.. The chair having a high back, the top of the back having been sheared off almost a decade ago, the cushion having fallen apart in both the back and the actual seat. Attempts had been made to refurnish the chair itself, try to bring it back its former glory, but their leader had decreed it would remain the same. To be a constant reminder that leadership was meant to be comfortable, it was a burden you took upon yourself to make sure no one else dealt with the same burden. Azriath looked to the man who leaned forward, his fingers inter locked as he looked at two before him.[/size]

[b][size=3]â??Apologize Magistrate, I didnâ??t come here to fight.â?[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]â??Yes, I know. We all gathered here so we could decided what shall be done with our Chapter next. The council members and I are ready to hear your ideas, Name Bearer.â?[/b] Azriath bowed his head then, looking to both the Magistrate and the rest of the council members. He knew how the system worked, the council changed with each meeting, new faces always sitting in the seats of the council to give it new ideas and fresh perspectives. It, however, made it challenging for the speaker as they were not always familiar with what the council agreed with. It made the meeting and the verdict fair, in Azriaths mind, and it gave every single person a voice in these preceding. Only two seats on the council were permanent, both of those were reserved for the Name Bearers. But since one Name Bearer was speaking, only one seat was filled and one had been removed from the council for the time being. Azriath let his body relax, but kept his hard look to maintain the air about the Name Bearers, and to make sure everyone knew how grave their situation could become.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Magistrate, council members, brothers and sisters of the Forgotten I come to you today in our time of the most need. We, as the Forgotten have one duty here, our duty and an honor is to be the defense against the biggest threat humans kind has ever seen. We stand against the Thinners and win every time!â?[/b] The crowd in the bleachers let out a load cheer, the pounding of feet and the raised fists in triumphant was always a good sign for any speaker. Magistrate held up his hand and the crowd went silent once more as he adjusted in his seat.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??We donâ??t need any fancy speeches or pep talk for our brothers and sisters. We just want to hear what you have to say Name Bearer.â?[/b] Azriath nodded to him once more.[/size]

[b][size=3]â??Very well, I will get to the point then. Our Chapter is in need of new recruits, we need more Forgotten to build our numbers. We need to be prepared for the Thinners to return.â?[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]â??We havenâ??t seen Thinners in almost two years, what danger are they to us anymore?â?[/b] He heard Adonis say, standing beside the Magistrate as his muscle. The Magistrate turned his gaze to his guard and Adonis shied away as he averted his eyes to the ground. But his words had been enough to build murmurs within the council and the crowd of Forgotten, Azriath kept himself calm as he pushed forward.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??The Thinners are always a threat to us, no matter how long they wait, no matter how long they hide from us. When we all took our oaths, we made a lifetime commitment, for some of us it has been years, for others they are not so fortunate. We have lost each other to Thinners, training accidents, construction, and we even had a murder in our hands.â?[/b] He let it soak in just a little before continuing, letting his passion show on his face now.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Shame on any and all of you who say the Thinners are no longer a threat, those gates arenâ??t closed. Those doorways are always present and until we figure out how to close those rifts in our world, they will always be able to come to our world at any time. And because of this threat, I go beyond just suggesting this, I demand we go out and recruit more people for our cause!â?[/b] Silence followed as he looked around at all the eyes staring at him, he could see Talos in the crowd staring at him intently. It wasnâ??t often when they saw Azriath express his true feelings, but it was always enough to make everyone remember why they were there. Azriath looked back to the council, some had the same look as the crowd, and others maintained their composure. Magistrate was as calm as anyone, having to remain as objective as possible to consider as many options as possible.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Council members, what do you each of you think?â?[/b] Magistrate said before changing his gaze to the mixed group of men and women, Hawk looking to his fellow Name Bearer with a reassuring nod.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??We need time to consider the options, Leader. If you would just give us a fe-â??[/b] He was instantly cut off when Magistrate rose from his chair, the ambient sun light showing off his short brown hair with tufts of blond through it, the dark brown eyes that conveyed a hardness that came with being a seasoned enough leader. His all black clothing giving off an intimidating effect, the leather chest piece he wore, something he had created with his own two hands; reflected some of that dull shine, his black cloak having been pushed over his shoulders now.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??This is not a time to deliberate; we do not need and unanimous agreement on this subject. What are your thoughts?â?[/b] His tone was commanding, and everyone knew what was to be done. Azriath had identified the voice of the council member as Cage, he was always a careful man, and being pushed into a decision would more than likely give Azriath a negative answer.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??I say No, we need more time to make a plan.â? [/b][i]As expected[/i], Azriath thought to himself.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??No.â?[/b] Another member said.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Yes, we need more fighters.â?[/b] Hawk said as he stood up, Azriath simply looked at him, conveying nothing to his fellow Name Bearer.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??I vote yes, the Thinners will return.â?[/b] Another member voted in favor, Azriath knew there were three more votes to go. Two council members and then the Magistrates vote.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??No.â?[/b] He saw a head shake, his heart beat a little faster then. Waiting on the last council member, he went by the name of Shade. Is whole name was Shady mc Shaderson II, even though he was the one and only person to take that name. He had a history of doing things that contradicted the popular vote purely to be an annoyance, other times he went along with it as a way to sneak into favor. He had a rat like quality to him that made most people quiver; Azriath treated him as he did everyone, with cold indifference.[/size]

[b][size=3]â??Hmmmm, now which way should I go on this one? I mean so many choices and so little time, if I had a little incentive it might make my decision easier.â?[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]â??You will decide on your own thoughts and merits, decided now or face expulsion.â?[/b] Eyes went to Magistrate then, his threat bearing plenty of weight as only one person in the Chapters history had been expelled from the Forgotten. A person they no longer thought about only whispered about to one another from time to time. Shade bowed his head then.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??Very well sir, I vote yes then.â?[/b] Cage spoke up quickly then.[/size]

[b][size=3]â??We are deadlocked sir, we cannot move forward with Azriaths plan.â?[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]â??You forget my vote Cage, the cause is worthy in my mind. I vote yes. And with my words, the proposal passes and shall move on from this.â? [/b]Magistrate stared down Cage, his gaze unwavering as the other back down.[/size]

[size=3][b]â??This council is dismissed; we will send out a small troop to recruit form the nearby towns. We will only take volunteers and any â??criminalsâ?? they havenâ??t executed. As this is your proposal Azriath, you will be the lead on this one. Hawk will go with you as well, and any who wish to join or Azriath picks for the recruitment.â?[/b] The room was ablaze with noise as everyone cleared out, some going back to their choirs, others suiting up for the trek ahead in hopes of either being chosen or allowed to go. Azriath simply looked to Magistrate once more, the exchange simple and without any motion before Azriath turned away, walking alone once more.[/size]

Alright everyone, things are a bit heated in the Chapter. The Chapter is diminishing and we need more people, our first task is to gather others to our cause. First post, go ahead and just post about your thoughts and your preparations, now go crazy kids.
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[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]Maxwel moved about the small make shift kitchen quickly, she was comfortable here, she knew this place well and knew how to get around it better than most. She stopped as all of a sudden the small dining room burst to life as the doors opened and people began rushing in talking this or that about the meeting. Maxwell put the platters of what ever she hand managed to scrounge together out on the large counters, watching as everyone picked up the old mishapen steel plates and utensiles. [/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]She looked down at the food and nodded to her self pleased with what she had found and put together. She had found a few cans of vegetables left and unharmed in a burnt down cafe, she had been able to pick some of the surviving greenery nearby for something a little more fresh, and to her luck a rare chance had sprung up in the form of a live animal that had managed to either breen its way back into thier lives or had just been lucky enough to evade the thinners, but not her. The buck had proven to be a good source of meat but the amount the starving animal had on him was just enough for a few weeks worth of rations; she sighed and looked up as people began to talk louder now, their spirits somewhat lifted with the smell of food. [/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"Can you believe this? They are really going out to find more for our cause, like we have the room or the food for these people, let alone the need. The Thinners are a thing in the past, we have no more to fear from them now."[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]Maxwell listened intently now.[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"I think your wrong, the more people we have for the cause the greater our defenses are. What if they are just laying in wait like the first time? We'll be out numbered again and pushed to extiction."
"We already are, those of us in the order are pertty much forbidden to have any relations with others due to the fact of the name bearers and forgotten, it's to dangerous. Those people out there, they are the ones keeping our race alive and they aren't doing all that great with it."[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]Maxwell shook her head and turned putting her hand on another of the cook's there shoulders.[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"Your in charge, I'll be back."[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]She left the kitchen and went to her room, if you could call it that, but she liked it to be honest. The back wall had crumbled long ago leaveing just a wall of dirt there, the smell was over powering to some but she loved it. The smell of the earth while she moved about the small space gave her comfort of some kind. She looked up as rivlets of water ran down the sides of the dirt making small trails of mud, making the smell stronger. She still didn't mind, she loved her space. She stretched her arms above her head and smiled as a small light colored ferret came from the vegetation that had grown through out her room; she chuckled as it moved down her arms and onto her shoulder, she had found him a few years ago in an abandoned house, no doubt having been someones pet at the time of the attack and having hidden away to stay safe. She had snuck him back with her and kept him as companay.[/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"What do you say bandit, shall we go?"[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]He scurried down her body and up onto her bed sitting up on his hind legs and looking intently at her.[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"I suppse that's a yes."[/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]She began to move about her room getting a few things here and there together, once done she hald out her pack and shook her head as Bandit clamored into it happily.[/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"Now, to find that pain in the ass before he takes off."
She left her room and walked the halls almost aimlessly before she spotted the man she was looking for, and he wasn't alone, another man she knew well was with him, Hawk, a massive sized man compared to her and somewhat silent; which annoyed her. [/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"Azriath!"
The man turned and frowned at her.[/color][/font]
[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]"Why are your bags packed?"
"I'm going with you."

His face remained straight as he stared her down, she could tell that in his mind he was weighing options before he finally spoke.
"No. Your to young."[/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]She threw her hands up and scoffed.
"Like that means anything! C'mon, you need me to go with you."
He didn't even blink when she said this, merely crossed his arms over his chest, Hawk towering over them looking much the same.
"Neither one of you can cook worth ass, and you both know it."
"There are other cooks to take."
"As good as me? Can any of them scavange food the way I can? Cook it to bring out the nutriants it holds, no matter how old it is? Can they tell the difference between an herb and a weed? Can they-"
"I get it."
"So I'm going."[/color][/font]

[font=comic sans ms,cursive][color=#000080]She could tell that she had won whether he said so or not, she smiled as he turned and continued walking down the hall, Maxwell now on the other side of him as she followed. [/color][/font]
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"[b]That was too close of a call, your vote was the deciding factor in it all Azirath. I dont think we could have had any better luck, even if the threat wasn't as high as it was not[/b]" Hawk mentioned as both eh and his fellow name bearer walked side to side out of the meeting that just took place. He noticed the man to still be silent, content with the choice of the Leader, that was for sure, but still something seemed to be bothing him.

"[b]Even with the permission, it is still going to be a huge challenge finding those recruits that we need for this battle. But, you are right, I am a little pleased with the luck fo the draw[/b]" Azriath smirked for a moment at the two made their way about their common house, the news seemed to put everyone into an uproar, while anger some of the other members of the order as well. However, no one would dare to question either Hawk or Ariath, for their expertise and history as Name Bearers since the times of chaos when the Thinners roamed about freely, killing anyone, Forgotten or civilian, in their way. Those were dark times, times Hank wishes he could just push away in his thoughts, but lately the images seemed to be coming back more and more as time passed. The man always took this as a warning sign that something bad was about to happen, and with his experience, he was always right to assume so. Hawks bare feet withstood the harsh treatment of the wooden floor in their house, he was used to the rough feeling and small pricks of wood that would try to breach his skin, but walking around in that condition for years has made his feet strong and sturdy. He didn't mind the rough environment one bit, it always reminded the man that there was always something to be on the watch for when your body is always at the ready for action. Especially against a foe like the Thinners. Both men turned a corner upstairs in their house, having been sought out by Maxwell and their failed argument with her joining the search for new recruits. She did have a point, she was useful with food and when it came down to the final decission...they were beated. The girl seemed happy enough that she had made her point and joined the two men as they continued their conversation.

"[b]Where do you think we should start our search? We should really expand outside of out territory if we want to find some fresh blood. Those who already live around here know of this house but could grow worry if we suddenly have more people all of the sudden. They've grown accustomed to the amount we have now, or what little we have to say the least[/b]" Hawk spoke up as they made their way to Azriath's personal room, before entering, both men turned towards Maxwell.

"[b]We'll speak more alone on the subject soon[/b]" Azriath spoak, finally turning to the young girl. "[b]This is where we paart Maxwell, this is a conversation we can't discuss with you[/b]". The news clearly upsetting Maxwell as she gave a hateful glare to the man, but only recieved a cold stare back.

"[b]I should be in on all the planning since I am volunteering to go. This is something that I want to do on my own.[/b]" The girl was determined, but Azriath was not budging from his spot, clearly he was losing his patience with their argument, Hank noted the mood change and placed a hand on the young girls shoulder.

"[b]Not this time Maxwell, this is a grown up conversation[/b]" Hawk ruffled her hair with hsi other hand, making the girl scream slightly as she tried to swing at the man.

[b]"Awe! I just fixed it!" [/b]Maxwell roared, on to recieve a laugh from Hawk. It was that time, Azriath finally cracked a small, if not microsopic smile on his face at the two fussing with one another. "[b]Fine, I'll gather whatever supplies I can for when we head out, but don't do that again Hawk[/b]" Maxwell pouted as she turned to her side and made her way down the hallway. Azriath finally opening his door and entering, Hawk turned to face the doorway, but stopped when he noticed another member of their order, a recently new Forgotten added only 5 months ago stare down the hallway just as Maxwell left. The man stood at six foot and had a somewhat average build to his physique, but, from what he recollected during the memory extraction, he wasn't the kind of man you would think would volunteer himself for protecting others. During the memory extraction and his final initiation process, Hawk saw his true dark side, and, before he could protest the ritual, it was too late. Still, he has been somewhat unease ever since the man joined their chapter, making sure personally that he was nowhere near the women of their chapter, especially the young girls. The man simply stood in the hallway, even after Maxwell had left from sight, raising his hand to his lips, slowly licking his cold, dry finger with his rough tongue as he stepped forward, almost as if he didn't even notice Hawk in the hall as he walked.

"[b]Going somewhere[/b]?" Hawk's tone changed from carefree to slightly serious in a heartbeat, reaching his hand to the back of his belt where he kept his throwing knives, the man managed to place of the hanbdled in his palm and let it rest there for a moment as the man came back from his entropy.

"[b]Oh, no sir. Just...staring off into my own world for some reason. I can't help but feel like I know her, which is odd in itself. But, just have a feeling, ya know?[/b]" HIs accent wasn't a norm around here, but it was deep and almost from the western parts of old. Hank wasn't sure what was happening, but, recollection wasn't something that usually happened when becoming a forgotten, at least, not withing the first year or so. It was at that time, Azriath finally turned around and saw his fellow name bearer standing in the doorway, but, he could see his backside and where his hand resided. The man raised an eyebrow as he made his way towards his ally, finally seeing the other man he was talking to.

"[b]Jerico, is there something you need?[/b]" The name bearer asked without hesitation.

"[b]Oh, no Azriath, I'm sorry. Just walking around sir." [/b]The man was shaken, but finally found his form.

"[b]Well, we're all trying to keep busy, everyone is doing their part. Go help out the others..."[/b]

"...[i]and stay away from the kitchen[/i]..." Hawk quickly whispered, his tone more serious and stern as the two men looked at him. His eyes slightly dialted as he stared at the man, his muscles seemed tensed as his breathing shrotened. Azirath had seen this before, this was a battle stance. But, as ordered, Jerico followed his commands and went back to the other side of the common house, Azriath looked back at Hank, seeing the man walk away slowly towards his own room.

"[b]Hank...? Something troubling you?[/b]" He spoke silently.

"[b]I'm sorry, suddenly feeling dizzy. Can we continue this conversation a little later? I just need a half hour to clear my head[/b]" Hank was already turning a corner before his request could be answered, the stocky man slowly walked to his room, placeing a hand on the wall for balance with every step he took.
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[size=3]Azriath watched as his fellow Name Bearer walked off, his footing shaky and his hands lightly grazing the walls. He could see his friend trying to be discreet about it but years of careful observation and paranoid glances over the shoulder made his eyes sharper then most. He couldn't know for sure the cause of Hawks discomfort, but he knew it stemmed from Jerico and that was obvious to him and Hawk alone, a problem that arose when you inducted criminals into their order. Azriath knew that he Jerico was once a child molester and a rapist, his taste in girls would have been enough to have him killed by anyone in the order, and fortunately for Jerico all that kind of information was held on to by the two Name Bearers and Magistrate. As long as they kept this to themselves, dozens of Forgotten would remain safe amongst their brothers and sisters. After seeing Hawk disappear around the corner, he moved with a purpose in mind, his body language and his hard face showing to everyone that he was not a person to even approach right now. His hands were balled into loose fists, his arms swinging lightly as he turned the opposite corner of Hawk and quickly found Jerico once more.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Jerico."[/b] Azriath said in one firm word and everyone in the room instantly shied away from the one person that had been picked out of the crowd. Forgotten members who had been speaking to him suddenly went about random tasks, some even looked like chickens who had just gotten their head chopped off. Aimless roaming that Azriath didn't bother with acknowledging the others as Jerico stared at the Name Bearer wide eyed, sweat buidling on his brow as he tried to find his voice. [/size]

[b][size=3]"Ye-yes Azriath?" [/size][/b]

[size=3][b]"You attended the meeting did you not?"[/b] Jerico could only nod as the Name Bearer crossed his arms, pausing to leave Jerico to quiver a little longer in his boots.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Then you know where we are going and what we are doing correct?"[/b] Once again, he could only nod his head.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Good, pack your things. You are coming with us, you have one hour."[/b] Azriath turned away then, walking away as his arms fell to his sides and he disappeared from the room as quickly as he appeared. As he wasn't sure what the problem Hawk had with Jerico, he determined it was the only thing he could do to make sure nothing happened while they were gone. He was prepared to head back to his room when he heard the sound of hurried footsteps, something running behind him cause him to turn his head just enough to see one of the younger women rushing toward him. Azriath let out a sigh as he moved aside for her to run past, but she instead stopped directly in front of him, he could only raise a brow as the woman gathered her breath.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Azriath.... I-I need"[/b] He held up his hand to stop her from taking, the message deteriorating as she gulped for air.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Catch your breath first, Circe was it?"[/b] She nodded as he gathered herself, Azriath mentally patted himself on the back for remembering her name. He sometimes forgot people, and he was slightly impressed he had done so well with so many Forgotten. He waited patiently as she finally calmed down now, standing up now she began talking. Looking her over, he could see she was a somewhat plain woman, her features didn't stand out and her eyes were a muddy brown, but her skin had several freckles dotting her cheeks that gave her a somewhat appealing look. He truly didn't care that much about how she looked, her clothes however were very strange compared to most of them. Wearing a vest instead of a shirt, it covered enough of her body and the vest itself was made of leather, a rather rare material since animals were scarce these days. Her pants were several different pieces of clothe stitched together and her shoes were nothing more then slippers made with pieces of the scrap leather that came form the vest and planks of soft wood. Her plain brown hair was cut short, barely touching her jawline, but it did a well enough job framing her face.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Azriath, please come with me Kahlan needs your help right now. She's not well."[/b] Azriath looked at her skeptically, he knew Kahlan had been missing from events for the past few months, but the details had escaped him initially, but he always found out what as going on sooner or later. He nodded to her, she turned then and hurried off the way she had come, Azriath following behind her at an even pace as they quickly came to Kahlan's room. This was one of the few that still had a door let, giving the best privacy that most of the women were given. Circe pushed the door open and gestured for him to come in, holding his hands behind his back he walked into the room and Circe quickly closed the door. Azriath instantly noticed a curtain separating the room, his eyes opened wide for just a second before a memory of his clinic days suddenly hit him and he felt his rage rise up inside of him. Not waiting for Circe to move from the door he quickly stepped for ward and grabbed the curtain, tearing it from the ceiling where it had been nailed. His hands clenched so hard he hadn't been able to let go of the curtain as he saw the woman with something in her hands, her arms cradling a little form wrapped in a blanket and his anger peaked as he started to breath harder. Kahlans eyes were on him now, shimmering blue eyes full of sadness and welled up with tears as her lips creased into a frown. He finally tossed the curtain aside and rushed forward, standing over her as she laid on the cot with several pillows acting as back support. He looked at the bundle of blankets in her arms and saw the small round face, its eyes closed and its mouth parted as it slept quietly. His face showed his anger, his entire body stiff and slightly shaking at what he was seeing.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Who is the father?"[/b] He said between gritted teeth, his eyes never leaving the small face before him.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Malgus, it's Malgus."[/b] Circe spoke up as Kahlan seemed unable to speak at all, simply looking at the Name Bearers angry eyes and trying her best to hold back her tears.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Go get him, now!"[/b] He commanded with such force that Circe tripped over her own feet before rising once more and rushing out the door, slamming it shut behind her in her attempt to flee. Azriaths chest was rising and falling quickly, his breathing harsh as he could see what they had done. He had suspected this was the cause of her disappearance, but he hadn't pursued the matter as he had more taxing matters on his mind. But seeing what he did now, he realized he should of pushed much harder, he should have attacked this head on and discovered more quickly what was going on, they could have avoided all of this. But now, it was going to be much harder. He removed his jacket, his own rage generating more heat then he needed, showing off his tattooed arms and the soft ballistic vest he wore in the chapter house. He heard the door open once more, keeping his eyes on the baby before him as he heard heavier footsteps enter, and a softer one about to walk in the door.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Outside Circe. I do not need more eyes for this."[/b] He saw the look in Kahlans eyes, her dark hair sweeping over her face, plastered to her skin through sweat and tears. He had also heard a sudden intake of air from Malgus behind him, peaking one eye over his shoulder, he saw Circe's meek form exist the room with the door closing behind her. Malgus' eyes shifted between the Name Bearer, a figure who had ultimate authority within the chapter house, only falling under Magistrate himself. His hands became clamy and his eyes shifted about as he felt his throat getting dry, sweat beading down his bald head.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Azriath, sir, I don't know what to say I just-"[/b] Azriath held up his hand then, Malgus shutting his mouth instantly before Azriaht lowered his hands once more.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Do you understand what you have done? Can you comprhend the consequences?"[/b] Azriath turned then, his eyes focused on the man before him. He could see the fear and the despair on his face, a man known for his hardness and his strength. Who now found himself against an original memeber of the Shadowtombs and a man who was best known for his hard and even cruel methods in mantaining the order.[/size]

[size=3][b]"I didn't know we were celebit as the Forgotten?"[/b] Malgus said, trying to diffuse the tension anyway he could. The joke only seemed to make Azriath angrier and he suddenly rushed forward, a hand thrown outward and colliding with Malgus' throat. The force pushing him against the wall, Azriaths hand clenched down on his windpipe and the struggle began.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Is this a game to you boy? Is this all one big joke to you? Can you even understand what you have condemed this child too? Can you?!"[/b] Azriath clenched harder on his throat, his adrenaline surging through his body as he gritted his teeth. He watched as Malgus clawed at the hand holding him, his face turning more and more pale as the moments ticked by. His attempts at pulling the hand away getting weaker and weaker as the air dwindled from his body, his body starting to go limp. Azriath felt the need to just squeeze harder, but he let his sense take hold once mroe and released him, Malgus coughing as he took in heavy gulps of air. Kahlan was weeping behind them, holding her baby closer as he let his temper cool just enough to keep from killing Malgus.[/size]

[size=3][b]"You have to get rid of the child." [/b]He saw their eyes open wide and a look of shock on their faces.[/size]

[b][size=3]"We can't! This is our baby!" [/size][/b]

[size=3][b]"And you know the consequences! Your baby now has a name, and if you keep the baby and it grows up, your child its now a weapon against us. Do you want to watch the Thinners kill your child?"[/b] He saw their eyes, he heard the weeping from Kahlan and Malgus going to her side to reassuer her. Azriaht kneeled down and lifted his pant leg, pulling out his Tac tool, he gripped the knife in his hand as he stared at them with intent in his eyes. Malgus rose when they saw the blade, standing between Azriath and Kahlan.[/size]

[b][size=3]"I won't let you do it. You can't kill our child."[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]"I'm not going to do it, one of you are."[/b] A flare of rage appeared in Malgus now, his stance firm as he was ready for a fight.[/size]

[b][size=3]"I refuse to do it."[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]"You don't get a choice anymore. You broke our rules, rules set in place to prevent the Thinners from getting and upper hand. You disregarded everything for a night of passion. You knew what would happen, this is what you have to do!"[/b] Azriath could see that malgus was defeated, his shoulder slumpped and his head hung low with his eyes closed and his hands held open as he sat on the cot beside Kahlan. Touching their foreheads together, he could see the sadness in her eyes, her crying lighter but still evident. Azriath may have been genuinely angry, but now he was doing something far more cruel, he was putting them through hurdles to see how far they were willing to go. He flipped the blade in his hand and held the handle out, they whispered between themselves before they both nodded. Malgus reached out, taking a hold of the knife in the Name Beares hand, Azriath held on the the blade tighter then he should as Malgus pulled it out, slicing open Azriaths palm. Revealing to both of them how sharp the blade really was, how honed the edge was over all the time Azriath had kept it. He saw Malgus hold it out, the squared edge pointing down toward the bundle he then saw Kahlan's hand rise up and grip Malgus' hand. Both of them touching the knife handle, and then he saw something he had not been ready for; he saw a determination in their eyes to fix what they had done, to correct their mistake. See their connection ,seeing their commitment to what he had not only told them to do, but had commanded them to do and his own memories flared to life once more. He felt his heart thump heavy in his chest and his mind swam with the memory of his own family, and what had transpired around them. He reached out then, placing his bloodied hand on their hands making both of them look up at him right then.[/size]

[size=3][b]"Take a moment to breath, we have one other option now that I see your commitment to our cause."[/b] He saw the light reutrn to their eyes, he kept his face cold and made sure they didn't get any hope from him.[/size]

[size=3][b]"What is our other choice with our boy?"[/b] Kahlan finally voiced out loud.[/size]

[size=3][b]"We give the child to one of the towns we visit, but after we give him to a family, you two can never visit him. You can never see him again. These are the conditions I am setting, but if you reject my terms now, I promise you that you will have to end his life by your own hand."[/b] They nodded their agreement, the mood still grim but they understood now.[/size]

[size=3][b]"If you don't decided by the time we leave for the town, I will kill him myself. And I will make sure [i]everyone[/i] sees what happens."[/b] He took the blade from their hand, leaving a bloodied hand print on the both of them. He replaced the knife and picked up his jacket, Malgus and Kahlan stayed connect for a few more moments before he say Malgus head rise up.[/size]

[b][size=3]"What do you mean 'We leave'?"[/size][/b]

[size=3][b]"You two are coming with us now, you have to see this through. You have one hour, be prepared with your decision."[/b] He put his jacket on then, leaving the room with a firm thud and seeing Circe standing near the door as he gave her a hard glare before walking down the hall. He reached into one of his side pockets of his cargo pants and pulled out a gauze wrapping and some ointment, he applied the gel material and wrapped his hand carefully, makinger sure it was secure enough but loose enough to keep the blood circulating. [/size][size=3]He hoped he hadn't made a mistake with those two, but would know soon enough.[/size]
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Sitting on the side of his cot reflecting on his darker thoughts from his run in with Jerico, Hawk kept his eyes shut as he tried to regain his composure, banishing the dark memories of the former criminal, and surprising to Hawk, his own personal convictions and thoughts about the man. He knew it was a mistake in the first place to go through the initiation process with Jerico in the first place, but with little help they had with the lack of Forgotten members, both he and Azriath had little choice in who they brought in. Still, it made the man uneasy, especially with the former criminal in the house with their allies, especially the women. Unfortunately, Maxwell happened to be the youngest female in the group, which was enough concern for the Name Bearer. Hawk shook his head slightly, gripping onto the rails of his cot hard, his knuckles turning white from the tightness of his grasp as the mans bare feet continued to tap down onto the wooden floor of his room. It took a little while, but eventually the thoughts calmed down in the mans head, the dark thoughts vanishing once more into the recesses of his mind as Hawk smiled slightly. The pain from concentrating to calm his thoughts drained the stocky man, it was training he had to conduct on his own ever since he volunteered to become a Forgotten, he wasn't aware about the side effects of his position. Hawk opened his eyes, looking around his broken down room without moving his head, a familiar and somewhat "safe" environment from what he had years ago....

~[i][b]Seven Years Ago[/b][/i]~

The sound echos of gunfire and battle cries filled the rampant streets as innocent civilians fled for their lives while the Thinners stalked and killed any living human being that came within close enough range. The military blockades held as long as they could, rifles fired relentlessly as soldiers scrambled to make a defensive stance against their enemy. The war being waged was at its peak, thanks to the recently formed group called, "The Forgotten", they managed to find a way to suppress the Thinners to one area with a special talent and somewhat mystical, almost unbelievable form and fashion. One way or another, it was a stepping stone for mankind to have a fighting chance against the creatures that have taken so many lives for so many years, and still continue to do so, but now, the humans had their leverage. Hawk was neither an innocent civilian nor military, he was born a fighter and claimed on his life that he would die as one. Surviving on his own for years with sheer training and honing his skills with his throwing knives, the man was able to stay alive, always moving and picking off his targets tactically and with no mercy. Though he was short and well built in stature, he was no fool to combat and death, coming so close many times when overwhelmed by surprise reinforcements from the Thinners side. Today though, was a day that he aided whoever he could, feeling bold and a new feeling in his body that their many sacrifices and pain would hopefully come to an end with some time. But for now, he would do what he could. The man ran towards the action as civilians panicked and rant he opposite way, Hank's heart pumped to its maximum as he approached the alleyway of the side street. Making a mad dash towards the other side, the man quickly stopped, his bare feet scraping against the pavement, cutting the dead skin in the process. The sting was nothing compared to the surprise he felt when two Thinners appeared from the shadows and stood their ground, making their way towards the small human man. Hawk reacted out of natural instinct and attacked, expertly tossing his throwing knives to each targets many major organs, their screams echoed, almost putting Hawk in a state of numbness until the man tossed more knives into their throats. Once the Thinner's were on the ground lifeless, Hawk slouched over, holding his hands to his knees as the man took deep breaths.

"[b]That....was a close one[/b]" The man gasped, but spoke too soon, a Thinner grabbed the smaller human from the back of his neck and tossed his body to the brick wall on the side. Hawk groaned in pain as he looked at his new attacker, grabbing a hidden knife from his side belt and charging with a mighty battle cry. Hours later, the sun sank into the decimated street as the moon rose, the commotion from earlier continued as Hawk held onto his bloody shoulder, breathing for air as the blood from his wounds dripped down his body and onto the cold street below. Moving more towards the commotion until he stopped in his tracks. A taller man in tattered clothes stood in front of him, starting down with eyes of knowledge and experience, yet mystery. The tattoo on his arms clear as day since the man wore a short sleeve tank top with worn down jeans. Both men scanned one another without even moving their eyes, their spirits seemed in sync for a moment, not one effecting the other as what would usually happen in battle to throw the enemy off course.

"[b]You're wounded[/b]" Spoke the man.

"[b]You're...[/b]" Hawk huffed. "[b]In my....way[/b]"

"[b]Are you on a suicide mission?[/b]" The man was quick and to the point, yet no emotion in his words, Hawk had no time for idle chit chat. The man growled a bit through his pain before speaking.

"[b]Either get out of my way or you fall too. The choice is yours[/b]" This made the mysterious man laugh sightly, almost mockingly.

"[b]I doubt it'll be one you'll agree with, such a shame to you.[/b]"

"[b]Listen man. You may have some height on you, but that doesn't mean I can't get on a chair and kick you in the chest.[/b]" Hawk's left hand drew two knives from his side holster and held onto them tightly by the handle. "[b]So, like I said, the choice is yours[/b]". The man lost his smile and took a more serious tone before speaking once more.

"[b]Your name[/b]" He said.


"[b]I asked you for your name[/b]" Hank smirked as he cracked a weak smile.

"[b]My name is...[/b]"

"[b]Hawk?[/b]" The feminine voice echoes his name several times before bringing the man back from his deep thoughts. It surprised the man for a moment as he looked over to his door to see Heart Breaker, a well known female member of their order, and a popular one, mostly because of her looks. Not to mention, ever since her lover was killed during training, most of the males have tried to court her for some sort of affection, but she was not a simple woman, she was a fighter and cunning. Hawk even caught his fellow Name Bearer Azriath glancing once in a while, but, they had their responsibilities and duty to protect their order.

"[b]HeartBreaker! I'm sorry dear...I was just thinking...[/b]"

"[b]Yes, I know. I was watching for a minute, your lips were moving while you stared at your wall. You must have been in some deep thought. I heard mumbling[/b]". She was a sharp one, the man had to give her that. "[b]Anyways, I brought you some supper Name Bearer, I've been told to spare no rations for your journey[/b]". Hawk was embarrassed that he didn't even notice the woman holding a small tray of food, steaming with an intoxicating aroma that made the made shiver with delight a little, a real home cooked meal only happened on someones day of birth...which would be a surprise to the fellow members since Azriath and Hawk were the only ones who knew their day of birth. Breaker placed the tray of food next to Hawk, but the man quickly picked it up and set it on his lap.

"[b]Please, join me[/b]" He spoke, it caught Breaker by surprise, but she smiled and slowly lowered herself and sat next to the man. Crossing her legs in a delicate manner, and because she was wearing a knee length skirt. Slightly worn down in color and the seems coming undone, Hawk would have imagined it use to be a delicate evening dress one would wear to a fancy dinner or night out to the ballet. The man took the crisp bread and split it in half, offering the other piece to the woman.

"[b]Thank you[/b]" She smiled.

"[b]Don't mention it dear[/b]" Hawk could see why other men fancied her, she was elegant and very well mannered. During meal time, they had shared local gossip and group moral as of late. For a years time, Hawk had taken the woman under his wing while her lover went for training, and looked after her while she was in mourning after her lover was killed. Both were close, like brother and sister close to one another during these times, which is why Hawk always hated others trying to win her over, internal brotherly instincts always kicked in. "[b]Breaker[/b]" Hawk spoke, she looked over to him, her hair dripping over the side of her face.

"[b]Yes Hawk?[/b]"

"[b]I want you to come with us on our outing, you've trained enough on your own. You're one of the very few who believes there is still a threat out there. I need someone who will have the courage to fight when needed.[/b]" She was stunned he would even ask such a thing, but if he didn't ask, then he would clearly order her to if she wanted to or not. That wasn't her concern though, she actually thought about going out with them, she just never thought much about it. She looked away for a moment before tucking her strand of hair behind her ear, then looking back at Hawk.

"[b]I will Name Bearer. I'll pack my things now[/b]" Hawk nodded as she stood and excused herself. Hawk finished his food and left his room, heading downstairs towards to kitchen to disguard his dishes, he was quickly greeted by Maxwell, who had less than a happy exterior than before.

"[b]Something wrong Maxwell?[/b]"

"[b]It's...its just not fair Name Bearer...sir[/b]" She almost whispered, taking his tray and going to the sink, the water running already as the soap foam rose up.

"[b]Maxwell?[/b]" The atmosphere was a sad one, other members not saying anything as Hawk left the kitchen, a little confused. It was then, Hawk hear a sound he would never have thought to hear in their order's household. Faint, weak, yet full of life behind a closed door. Hank reached for the door handle and slowly opened the door. Inside, Malgus packed their spare clothes and supplies they would need, it seems like they were going in their group, but their faces traced with tried and current tears. Both looked over to the other Name Bearer, but Hawk kept his attention at the bundle being held in Kahlan's harms, then, a small arm reached up and touched her chin, making the woman cry more.

"[b]We've already gotten our orders from Azriath sir, we'll be ready to leave in five minutes.[/b]" Malgus tried to hold back his own tears as he continued to pack their belongings for the trip. Hawk could feel multiple presences behind him, the other members of the order trying to view the new life, but Hawk stood back from the doorway and closed the door.

"[b]Whoever enters will have to deal with me[/b]" He spoke harshly before turning around, everyone got out of his way as the man made his way towards the entrance, already seeing Maxwell, HeartBreaker and to his dismay, Jerico already packed and waiting. Hawk leaned against the stone wall and thought to himself while he waited for his fellow Name Bearer and other volunteers to join them.

([size=4][b][i]Dear Gods...what have they done?[/i][/b][/size])
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  • 3 weeks later...
[size=3]The coldness of the hallways seemed to reach out to Azriath as he made his way slowly through their home. He could feel the world around him try to bring down itâ??s wrath with a soul crushing strength, showing him no mercy as it did everything it could to break his will. His determination and his dedication to the Forgotten, to the Chapter of the Shadowstomb was what kept him going these days. He did everything he could to make sure his duty was fulfilled, the duty to keep all of these people safe, no matter what they had done in a past life. As one of two people who remembered everything it was like to be in a life before this, to understand what everyone gave up for their cause and could only fathom what kind of questions arose in their minds. He and Hawk lived with it every day, all they had to do was look at another member and the memories were there to access. Whether it was by choice or by sheer force, the memories came to them always and sometimes they were more then someone could handle. Azriath had his own methods, his own rituals and teachings from his mentor that gave him a reprieve from the memories, which gave him time to settle things in his own mind and separate himself from the world. But, he wasnâ??t sure about Hawk and how he managed to take it all in. He knew he was strong, he had the fortitude required for the job of Name Bearer, otherwise he wouldnâ??t have been chosen. [/size]
[size=3][b]â??I should investigate one of these days, but it will have to wait another day.â?[/b] He quickly arrived to his room, picking up his bag that he had already carefully packed and left without any further incident. All he passed by simply moved out of his way as he held the backpack over one shoulder, using his other hand to support the strap while he let his wrapped hand hang at his side. The news had spread quickly of what had transpired, and his cold expression was enough to deter anyone from coming near him. He approached the open room before the doorway, showing all of the people who would be accompanying them for their journey. He saw Maxwell and Jerico standing there, Jerico looking nervous and Maxwell seemed excited about the whole thing. His eyes turned to see if the other two additions were made had made the right choice, but his eyes came upon someone he hadnâ??t expected and it got a reaction out of him. Hawk stood near Heartbreaker and they seemed to be in idle conversation, something Azriath had seen before and it was just Hawks way of playing It cool while he surveyed everything around him. He approached him first and pulled him aside in such a way it pulled glances form everyone, Azriathsâ?? entire body screamed that he was anything but happy.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??What the hell is she doing here?â?[/b] Hawk held his ground, his face firm and his hands held loosely at his sides.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??I think itâ??s time she comes along, she is proficient in combat and I have personally trained her as much as I can. And I think itâ??s time we took her out into the field; she canâ??t learn anything more from us here.â?[/b][/size]
[size=3][b]â??She cannot go with us; I will not be responsible for her as well as the rest of them.â?[/b] Hawk squeezed his hands into fists then, conflicted that both his friend and his fellow Name Bearer was talking to him in such a way. He had never spoken to anyone like this, it was as if there was something more to the whole thing, and Hawk wasnâ??t sure what it was.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??She is going, having her along wonâ??t hurt.â?[/b] Azriath was about to say more, but he was stopped from saying anything more when he heard more people behind him. He turned to look and saw three faces he expected and one he had not been ready for.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??Magistrate, Iâ??m glad you are here to see us off. Malgus, Kahlan, Iâ??m glad you made the right choice in this matter.â?[/b] They simply nodded to him as they walked off to his side, Malgus hold on to both of their bags while she carried the baby in her arms. Azriath watched them for just a moment before looking to Magistrate and the face that he so despised to look at.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??Yes, I was making sure that you have everything you need and if you have room for one more in your company.â?[/b] Shade moved his way up to stand before the Magistrate and look Azriath in the face, his body slightly hunched and his hands held in such a way that almost reminded Azriath of raccoons pawing at food. His narrow face and scrawny appearance made Azriath want to simply snap his neck like you do with vermin. He held his cold expression as best a she could, even though he could feel the anger welling up inside of him as so many things were going wrong quickly.[/size]
[size=3] [/size]
[size=3][b]â??Iâ??m sorry Magistrate, I already have more then I originally anticipated and would be hard pressed to take anymore with me.â?[/b][/size]
[size=3][b]â??You donâ??t have a choice in this Azriath, we all voted on this action and we need more than just your words and a group of people you picked up to understand how the trip went. We have entrusted Shade with this duty, his report along with yours and all of the ones involved with be taken when you return.â?[/b] Azriath clenched his hands, his bandaged hand stung with the pressure but it was the farthest thing from his mind.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??What is the point of this? His word alone isnâ??t heavy enough to effect what everyone says, he will just get in the way!â? [/b][/size]
[size=3][b]â??You will take him, this is not up for discussion anymore Name Bearer. He is ready to go and he knows the risks. Good luck only our journey and return to us, both of you.â?[/b] Magistrate turned and walked away then, Azriath watched him leave before he could say anything more. Everything was spiraling out of control, all he wanted right now was his gun and to leave this place for the time being. Being away, might just cure them all of some sort of sickness that was festering within them all, or everything might just fall apart without him.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??I know you may not like the way this has happened, but let me just sat that I am-â??[/b] A hand went up then, Azriath holding the palm of his hand towards Shades face.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??Donâ??t speak right now, the last thing I need to hear is your annoyance of a voice. Go ahead of us, I donâ??t need to see your face right now.â?[/b] He didnâ??t even bother to look at the disgruntled look on Shades face as he scampered away. Azriath picked his backpack back up, throwing it over his shoulder and standing before the rest of them.[/size]
[size=3][b]â??Gather your things and say one last goodbye, we are leaving now.â?[/b] He walked away from them all then, making his way to the armory to grab his last item. Pulling the SAW machine gun off the rack, he threw the sling strap over his shoulder and let the gun hang before grabbing a rectangular box and clipped it into his gun, he grabbed another clip and left the armory, ready to get this journey started so he could start to rebuild their order. He[/size]
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  • 5 months later...
[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"It looks like you'll have another mouth to feed Maxwell, think you can handle that responsibility?"[/b] Hawk snickered for a moment as the Name Bearer and young girl stood outside of the house waiting for the others to join them, their hunting dogs circled around the two with such energy it would seem as they were actually puppies once again. Hawk smiled lightly as he scratched a few behind their heads, strong German Sheppard mixes, vicious when needed and surprisingly playful to their masters. Maxwell sighed as she contemplated the rations and supplies she packed for the trip.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Well, Heart Breaker was a surprise but that could have been easily delt with, this new guy though, he's just another stomach to feed. None the less, have no real choice since the Magistrate commanded it. Did you see the look of pure disgust from Azriath? That was a bit scary, even for me".[/b][/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Indeed, but I'm sure his response to Shade's words was enough"[/b] Hawk looked forward as he saw Shade and Heart Breaker wait at hte wooden fence entrance to the grounds, not speaking to one another. Another cloudy day masked the sun's warmth, that seemed to be a norm around the area they lived in, either cloudy or rainy. Hawk had to admit it to himself, when the sun did come out, it was a fresh realization that the remaining humans that were still here gave him some inspiration to continue his work along with Azriath. However, the years were taking a toll on Hawk, the man knew it too, it was getting harder for him to control and conseal his anger from the rest of the order. But, he had a responsibility that no one could understand, and not many could deal with if given. Footsteps could be heard from behind Hawk and Maxwell, Azriath finally showed himself, fully armed and pack followed by Malgus and Kahlan, their child sleeping safely in Kahlan's arms. Azriath looked down at the hounds, raising an eyebrow at their surprisingly good attitude.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Are these the ones we're taking then?" [/b] His monitone voice again, Hawk knew he was annoyed.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Yes, this pack of 6 should suffice for our hunting needs and scouting. Problem?"[/b] Maxwell looked between the two, though friends and allies, she, nor anyone could tell if they were talking to one another as friends or enemies. Azriath grunted as he walked down the small steps and towards the front to lead the group.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Of course not"[/b] He spoke quickly. Hawk stood from his spot and made his way as well, followed closely by the other members of their order. Jerico came sprinting from the side street to meet the others at the front entrance.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Did you get what I asked for?"[/b] Heart Breaker spoke, it surprised both Azriath and Hawk that she had another member of their order run an errand for her, especially now. Jerico nodded as he rached into his glove pocket and pulled out a small bag of yellow dust. [b]"Thank you"[/b], she spoke, opening the pouch and pouring the dust on the ground. It had a sweet scent to it, almost like honey...real honey from way back before any of this happened. The power fell and blew about thanks to the assistance of the small gust of wind. [/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Heart Breaker, what was that for?"[/b] Jerico stared surprised, his efforts seemingly to waste now.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"It's a good luck thing I always do before going anywhere I don't know. Just something that came to mind for this trip"[/b]. Azriath and Hawk said nothing, another member of their order having faint memories of their past habits like Jerico did before. It was a lovely sentiment, but that little show of memory prooved to the Name Bearer's that their mission for new members was crutial, if not vital now.[/font]

[font=times new roman,times,serif][b]"Thank you Heart Breaker...it's time we leave. Lead the way mutts."[/b] Azriath spoke to the dogs, well trained they formed a circle around the group as they made their trek to one of the distant towns for the child's protection[/font].
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