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Dawn of the Final Day - 24 Hours Remaining -

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Post by Zonkes November 12th 2022, 2:27 am

The pumpkin masked man stood before an altar, his congregation, he raised his hands towards the desert sky, the Jack o Lantern moon smiling down upon them as they did their gruesome work. ”We give this soul to the God of Nightmares, the King of Fear. Mad Jack o’ Leary! May his darkened heart take you.”

The cool night air swept across the young woman’s face as she wept openly. Her mouth gagged, body bound. The smell of fear and fire filled the night, her chest shook with the power of her cries.

None would save her, as they injected the needle deep into her arm, and soon the weeping stopped, replaced by deep breathing as sleep overtook her, never to wake in this world again.

This wasn’t their first victim that night. Thecult moved throughout the city putting people to sleep, sending them to the realm of their master. The nightmares he summoned gave them no more mercy than anyone else, but they welcomed it.

When their victims found themselves on the other side of sleep, they came face to face with the mindscape version of Las Vegas. The city was filled to the brim with demons, monsters, and boogaboos of all description.

In the center of it all, Jack Prime awaited. A black and green crown of fire placed upon his head, he howled his laughter as his shadows wreaked havoc above. He’d have to be sure to claim his queen, but he didn’t want to leave the Blackguard in the cold. He shifted his attention to the hotel, it seemed that he had in fact managed to piss off Elena Vexus. Too bad she had no chance even against a shadow. That one is entertaining.

He scanned over to London, but the magical interference made it impossible for Jack to see. But… considering the shift he felt in his power, he knew that something terrifying was happening indeed.

Finally, Jack moved his sight to his lunar avatar, hoping to grab a glimpse of London… only to see the flash of black and white as the city detonated. For a moment, his mouth stood agape as he watched. Then, angry as he had ever been, Jack spawned himself into reality. ”So Lax wants to destroy London?” Jack said, and with his words he brought the Jack o lantern in the sky closer to the city.

”Fine then. I’ll just have to remind the city of Sin what the dinosaurs feared!”
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Post by Yang S. November 13th 2022, 3:49 am

Yang found her gaze fixated on the screen before her. The scene it showed was something that angered her to the core. Untold carnage unleashed on the city of London, and at the bottom of the broadcast was a banner explaining the horrors occurring in Las Vegas. The young woman carved her thumbnail as she bit into it. This wasn’t a nervous tick or anxiety taking over, it was rage and anger. These were things she could have prevented, things her family could have prevented, and yet there wasn’t a single overseer in sight. Yang took a deep breath, in an attempt to try and clear her mind.

If she was about to follow through with the plan she currently had laid out, then she’d need to be sound of mind. A flashing light out of the corner of her eye and a small rhythmic noise notified Yang that her small experiment was ready. After becoming aware of the situation in Las Vegas, Yang had poured time into figuring out a way to confront the madman behind the chaos and putting an end to the waking nightmare he now perpetuated. And it didn’t take her long to cross the cult dedicating themselves to said king of horror.

She had traveled to Vegas in the hopes of finding these cultists, placing herself at their mercy in order to gain access to the nightmare. Unfortunately or Fortunately depending on how you looked at the situation, the mysterious injection did not work on Yang. Her physiology made it difficult for the sleeping agent to take effect, burning it off to quickly before sleep could wrap her in its embrace. In her half groggy state Yang would subdue the cultists and make off with any extra vials of the strange substance they had on them.

Yang would later retreat to an unaffected part of the city, to a rather run down motel that was relatively abandoned, given the current circumstances she couldn’t blame people for not staying in this mess. One of the advantages to being the head of a major world spanning R&D company was that she could have anything she needed at a moments notice, and right now one of those things was the small mobile lab she no resided within. She had spent the better part of a day breaking down and the liquid in the vials to make a potent counter agent to wake people if needed, but really the true goal was to make it stronger.

And that was the warning she was now getting. The computers had finished synthesizing a sleeping agent strong enough to put Yang under. “I really shouldn’t be letting you do this. Its incredibly irresponsible of me as a father to allow you to take such a risk.”

“Its not irresponsible, you’re here to look after me. Everything here is set to monitor my condition. If things start to look grim we’ve already made something strong enough to wake me up.” Yang would reply to her father, reclining back on a cot. Her father would hesitantly connect several contacts. He did not approve of his daughters actions, but she was much like her mother, more so that she realized, and he knew there’d be no stopping her now that her mind was made up. He’d load up a syringe with the new sleeping agent and would introduce it into the IV they had set up just moments ago.

Within a minute or two, Yang found herself drifting off, the world around her slipping into darkness and fading from her mind. Her vision would remain clouded from some time, it was like she was wading through a bog, each step was a struggle to take but it soon became easier and easier. Eventually her vision would clear, she was inside the mobile lab with no signs of her father. The monitors were all blank, a few glitching back and forth, she was pretty certain the experiment worked and she was where she needed to be.

She might not have been able to do anything for London, but she could help the people here in Vegas. “Now where is that pumpkin headed freak” She’d say to herself, emerging from the lab and into the twisted dreamscape.

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Post by Casmaudius November 13th 2022, 9:13 pm

Cas didn’t see the atrocities first. He felt them. A wave of despair and pain that exploded, rippling across the fabrics of this world like a terrible note. It first formed as nausea within his stomach, a despair he couldn’t place that brought him to his knees within his private chambers. A desire to vomit mixed with the stinging tears within his eyes. He had felt this experience before, long ago when his world had been attacked and his sister turned towards something darker. All he knew was that something horrible was happening. To humans, many of them and that was something he didn’t like.

”What’s going on?” He muttered after recthing for a few seconds, wiping away various strings of saliva from around his mouth. That was when the gold doors of his chambers were thrown open, a young looking mage stepping through with a hurried step. His friend, probably one of the biggest helps in getting this whole religious gathering put together.

”Looks like you've already felt it, so that saves me some times.” He started looking around, coughing into his fist and then speaking again. ”Vegas and London were attacked by something big. Don’t know what but it might be something you’d be interested in.” He blinked, listening to the explanation, trying to remember where each of those cities were in relation to here. Sure, portaling might be able to get them to either, he was sure Christian wouldn’t want to use more energy than necessary.

”Get all your magic weapons and the like ready. We’re going to leave immediately,”

”You sure?”

”I’m a guardian of humanity. It’s my job to help them,” He responded, nodding and that seemed to be enough. Sending him walking off to get himself prepared. That left him alone again, brows furrowed and an anger rising within him. Someone was hurting people, killing them even and he was in the unique position to act upon it. Well, he had enough time to actually react now.

”I do love that part of you. Always willing to save people, even if it’s not the smartest move,” A voice spoke up, bringing with it a sense of elation. He whipped around to see a man, looking around mid thirties in appearance with glowing indigo eyes ringed with a prism of colors, dressed in a warm looking sweater and khaki slacks. His light brown hair was loosely kept, yet he always found is warm in appearance.  He had adapted to the fashions of this world quickly, though for what reason was unknown.

”Dad!” Without thinking he wrapped the older man in a hug, a tight one and lifted him up for a second.

”Wish everyone I met was this happy to see me. I’d like to speak longer son but...something it happening as I’m sure you’ve heard. Someones attacking this world, servants of an old enemy of mine,” He explained, ruffling Cas’ hair as he pulled away. ”London isn’t in need of your help. I have a champion there doing what they can but...Vegas might not be so lucky. I’m hoping I can trust you”

”Of course! What can I do to help?” he asked, looking up to the man.

”A champion of destruction attacks the peoples of that Sinful city through their dreams and only you can truly help them.”

”If he works through dreams, how do I fight something like that?”

”You enter the world of dreams obviously. Hence why I’m here, to help you out in that little endeavor,” He gave a small flourish, smiling warmly which put him at ease.  ”I can send you into the world of dreams but be careful. In these dreams you can be hurt, maybe even killed if you’re not careful. At that point I cannot help you, so be very careful my son,” Cas nodded along to the suggestion, brows furrowed in a determined fashion.

”Very well, send me. The more people I can save the better,” Gold flames licked up over his form, turning mundane clothes into brilliant gold plate armor.  The man smiled, resting his palm on his forehead.

”Very well. Save them, dispel the demon of nightmares and free the people from his endless dream,” A warmth coursed through him, turning the room around him into a blurred mess.  Next thing he knew he was somewhere else, a twisted version of city and in the vast distance he saw a figure looming over it all. He couldn’t quite make out the features but he did see things closer and lumbering around the streets.  His existence drew the attention of a few demons, their eyes alight with blood lust.  He looked back at them, the moonlit sword appearing within his right hand.

”Demons from the depths of the pit, I stand here ready to smite you all! ” Before any demon could react he gave a swing of his weapon, swiftly bridging the gap between him and a mantis, cleaving through its neck, mandibles chattering as it hit the ground.  The brilliant golden flames that wreathed his weapon was like a beacon to the nightmare.

His boots clinked against the nightmare facsimile of concrete and he took a stance to prepare himself for a further fight.
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Post by Nate6595 November 20th 2022, 3:17 pm

“Are you going to be okay?”

She wasn’t sure who had asked the question. The question itself was on her mind. It was something she was asking herself, something she wanted to ask him, but she couldn’t tell if she had been the one who asked it or if someone else had. She didn’t know what kind of answer she expected. The world felt like it was falling apart. It was falling apart and the burden was falling to heroes to fix it, and yet there were those who already saw them as a threat, as the cause and not the solution. It was only the start, but she could feel the waves of something big on the horizon. Regardless of how this went, they wouldn’t come back to the world they had worked to save.

Somewhere, she could still hear the reports playing. One in particular caused her ear to flick as she laid quietly on the table.  

“…these are just a few glimpses of the devastation that has overtaken the remnants on London. We see now what remains of the rescue workers struggle against these…” She heard the voice trail for a moment, her eyes slowly shutting, then opening again, “…the death toll is thought to be…no, not that high…is it?” She heard the desperation in the reporter’s voice. How could anyone maintain composure in a scene like that? “We don’t know if the battle is still ongoing. We know Meta-Humans were involved though, and whether they were the cause or not is remained to be seen.” There was a long pause, or perhaps she was fading away again. She heard questions…accusations, all ultimately leading to one final statement. “…something needs to change.”

The reporter wasn’t wrong, but she had a feeling they had the wrong intentions. The wrong kind of change would come from this. This day was only getting better and better…now she had to worry about job security on top of everything else.

She still hadn’t answered the question. She hadn’t answered. Through bleary eyes she looked and saw a pair of two white, glowing eyes looking down at her. A familiar face…a familiar…feeling? He was holding her hand, clutching it tightly. Her gaze wandered from him. There was something next to her bed. A…thing? It had wires…a hose? A tube? It connected to her arm; something pouring into her, making it hard to think.

What was she doing?

The question…

Slowly, so, painfully slowly, she reached her hand up and gripped his hand, now clutching it with both. “Gonna…knock him…right out. When I do, you take…take care of him here…” She managed to grin, though it soon faded as sleep started to set in, “Just remember…to give me…some…credit…”

She heard him laugh and squeeze her hand. It felt warm. It was nice…one last comfort before setting off to whatever hell awaited her on the other side. He spoke again, but the words were muted. Through drooping eyes she could see his lips move, make out words…but…she didn’t hear them. She opened her mouth to speak, but soon closed it again as the effort of speaking became too much for her. And then she felt it…he leaned down and kissed her on the head, and despite everything…she smiled, finally letting the drug overtake her senses. No matter what happened on the other side, no matter what changed, she could at least know that he would be here when she woke up.

And the world went dark. She drifted away from the room, from the bed, from Sam. She drifted until that exhaustion was gone and something new took its place. It was that strange mix of terror and excitement. She didn’t what to expect as she lifted herself off the bed and looked around the old, dusty room. She could already hear the sounds of terror from outside, screaming, people trying to fight back…and…

This was it. This was why she had chosen to be a hero. She would force down the feelings of apprehension and move. And yet her body still moved slowly. She walked to the door and put a hand on the handle, waiting for just a moment before opening. As the door swung open she looked out into the darkened streets of Vegas and took in a sharp breath.

“Okay…not good. Expected that much…” She said with a small sigh. She knew this was a dream…no, a nightmare, but this was…beyond strange. It felt lucid. She looked and winding treats and the ways light would shine down on some parts, yet not fully touch it. Some buildings took on weird, impossible shapes, and in some places the road would just end. She tried to peer beyond the city, but it was hard to make out from here. The city didn’t go on forever, yet she couldn’t see where it ended. Despite the terror of it all, she couldn’t help but mutter, “Honestly…seen worse, you should really try and step it up, my man…” She said to no one in particular.

Still, there looked to be something high above the rest, looming over the city. There was…a figure? That was better than nothing. With another breath, she crouched down and propelled herself forward, beginning to hop from building to building, trying to draw closer to…well, hopefully, to the source of all of this.

“Alright, bud…time to knock the king off his throne…”  
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Post by Casmaudius January 12th 2023, 11:14 pm

The creatures that lurked in the corners of the human unconscious proved almost ephemeral before his flames. What perplexed Cas really was that the scent of scorched flesh managed to reach his nostrils, something that made this seem less like a dream and more like something else. ”Are you suppose to experience senses like smell in a dream?” Cas mused, burning away spatters of blood from his gleaming golden armor.  He looked to his side and realized he was alone, a frown forming where a smile once was.  This was his fight and his alone. The humans of this world were under attack, and that meant  he would have to do everything he could do protect them. He looked up to the moon that overlooked this dreams cape, a pumpkin with jagged orange teeth and flaming eyes considering him.

Perhaps that was an avatar of Jack, the thing anchoring this dream world to the waking one.  ”Fighting the moon huh? Well, it’s a proper challenge for me,” He mused, hefting the cyan crystal blade onto his shoulder, working through what he could do to deal with this kind of thing. Would this affect the moon in the waking world?  He hoped not, because he wasn’t sure he could un-pumpkin an entire moon. Well, not yet anyway.

So he walked the twisted streets of the nightmare, considering the various otherworldly buildings that rose around him like walls. There were of course gaps between them, thing ones with shadows that felt as if they were writhing. His eyes could see within that unknowable darkness and it made him shudder.  He envied mortals who didn’t have the ability to see as much as he could. What had drawn these monsters from between the worlds into this nightmare realm to begin with? Had the king of nightmares made a bargain with something beyond even his own understanding?

“A light wanders through the dark...how delectable.” The creatures within the shadows hissed, their voices like nails on a chalkboard. It made his skin crawl and hairs raise.  Some muttered of other interlopers, though they didn’t say much else beyond that. Whatever they were, they didn’t approach him and so he had to ignore them for now. There was one true problem and it existed at the heart of this nightmare. That was when he felt it, two pinpricks of potential within this strange world. Something that beamed like brilliant beacons within the dark.

”Am I not the only one here?” He questioned, leaping into the air and landing on none of the twisted rooftops. They were spread out a little though nothing he couldn’t read should he want to. This lead to him moving around as best he could, until he noted a figure emerging from one of the buildings. Could it be some kind of lab? ”Hey! You’re not part of this nightmare are you?” Yang would hear the voice question as the gold armored person seemed to fall from the sky and land on the ground in a crouch, ground cracking around him. ”I hope not. I might need some help dealing with this here,”
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Post by Yang S. January 13th 2023, 2:15 am

Yang felt a cold wave wash over her as she cautiously moved about her surroundings. For the most part everything seemed to be in the same place it was in the waking world. Though there were some twisted and degrading structures that littered the area around her. She took a deep breath and tried to feel out this hellscape. There was something wicked at play here and it wasn’t just the nightmare kings power. “Hmm I should have probably thought things through a bit more before throwing myself into all this.” she mumbled to herself. This might have been a nightmare, but how much of what they did here would effect the real world?

She began to think about what she’d do in the event that she encountered any sort of resistance on her way to confront Jack. Her mind began to race with thoughts. What if he used the people he trapped here to protect himself, twisting and warping their appearance to throw off or shake the resolve of any would be heroes that would try to stop him. Could Yang live with herself if that were true? She’d shake the thought from her head. It was just a thought, no way she’d be able to confirm it just standing around here.

She’d have to set out and deal with anything as it came. Taking a moment to collect herself, Yang would begin to take her first steps away from the abandoned motel. She was only about a few yard from the building when she started to hear what sounded like whispers. Something or someone was watching her. She tried to focus a bit more in an attempt to try and understand what was being said.

“hehehe looks like we have another one!”
“yes, yes! Three new playthings to enjoy!”
“I want to play with them so dearly”
The laughter and conversation would carry on between what sounded like a cacophony of voices. Yang narrowed her eyes, this wasn’t going to be as easy as she thought. Before she could take another step a very different voice would halt her in her tracks. Her crystal blue eyes scanned all around her. Was this the nightmare trying to play tricks on her? She’d noticed at nearly the last moment a golden blur descending right near her. She’d leap back and drop into a fighting stance, only to ease up slightly as she took stalk of what had landed near her. It was a…man? Not just a normal man either. The person before her was clad in a brilliant golden armor. It was nearly like a beacon of sunlight in this otherwise dark and dreary nightmare.

Yang would give the man a strange look. “I could literally ask you the same thing, and we’d have no way of tell if we were telling the truth to one another. No offense or anything, but you know, given current circumstances” she said waving her arms around at the chaos the two found themselves in.

She’d let out a reluctant sigh, his words did resonate with her a bit. This definitely didn’t seem like a one person job, so if he really wasn’t part of the nightmare, then it would help to have an ally in here. Those wispers did mention a third had recently arrived to. Perhaps once the formalities were out of the way they could begin a search for this other person. “The names Yang. You are?

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Post by Nate6595 January 15th 2023, 4:55 pm

The air was off here.

Or...was there air? She wasn't sure how the logistics of a dream realm really worked. It felt more like a constant pressure to her, a force that was pressing down as she tried to move forward. It wasn't actually there, nothing actually holding her back, but she felt it. She felt in her shoulders and with hop she took threw the air. It felt like it each bound was a bit less, like something was grabbing her down.

She did her best to ignore it. She had to focus on moving on, finding wherever this throne was so she could kick Jack into next year. That was easier said than done, though. That strange air and pressure aside, the noise...people yelling and screaming, all of it was distracting. Distracting her from the task. Her heroing instinct told her to go save them, but in a case like this Jack had to take priority. Right now, the best way to stop people from getting hurt or worse was to stop it at its source, to take down Jack. But they weren't making that choice any easier.

She just had to tune it out, focus...focus on any other sound besides the....screaming?

No, that was a shout there. Voices. People talking and one of them...

The voice was familiar. She had heard it before. Lots of times actually...a friend. The name left her mouth before it came to her head, "Yang?" It wasn't shout or declaration, it was a whisper to herself as the realization came to her. That was one hundred percent Yang, no doubt about. She really could use that back up...Her ears perked and flicked in different directions, honing in on that conversation. Almost...had it. It wasn't far from her at all. And that was certainly Yang, and...someone with her? It didn't matter.

In quick bounds, she made a beeline for the conversation, moving up and up until she was perched on the ledge of a building that overlooked the two talking. Despite the nightmarish (literally) hellscape around her, she smiled as she saw the familiar alien before her. "Holy shit! Yang!" She smirked playfully at her friend, "Do you come here often or am I just the luckiest girl on the planet to meet a friend in these parts?" She stood up, giving her friend two fingers guns before settling, "Boy, am I glad to see you, though. Was worried I'd have to take all the credit for saving the day, glad I get to share it."

Her eyes flicked over to the other person who Yang had been talking to. She canted her head a bit, looking him up and down. "We kicking this guy's ass or is he with us?" She asked bluntly, staring at the man and trying to judge him for herself. She didn't seem all that off put by him. He didn't look like an enemy. They also had been talking, which probably meant that he was at least neutral which was better than the alternative. Still, though. This was a place of nightmares and she couldn't be too careful. She trusted Yang's judgement to help guide this choice.
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Post by Casmaudius January 16th 2023, 5:57 pm

Nothing seemed special from a mortal perspective about this woman but to his eyes they were all crystal clear. She had a kind of divine essence about her, something that set her apart and that would make her an ideal ally in this fight. ”I mean you could tell. I’m in capable of lying,” He noted as if that were something he just should tell a perfect stranger when his truthfulness were called into question. Even still he saw that he might have a potential ally, specially against the darkness he could feel writhing and pulsing within the center of the nightmare. It was enough to make him nauseous but he managed to hold that within.

Finally she gave him a name and he nodded, smiling slightly at the prospect. ”I’m Casmaudius but most people just call me Cas.” He responded, pausing only when he heard another voice and looked up to see...a rabbit? No, that couldn’t have been it. She was shaped like a human, yet her soul seemed to have something that gave the impression of a rabbit. Not a strange thing really, though it was something he found notable about her and also how she seemed to know this woman named Yang. Had they met before? It was an improbable concept but he liked it. Friends finding one another even in nightmares, now that was an amazing thing.  Enough to make his heart ache.

”Oh...hello there. I’m not here to fight anyone...well I am here to fight the master of this nightmare” He explained, looking up to the pumpkin shaped moon. ”This place is...dangerous though, we should be careful,” Even now he could feel them, creatures from beyond comprehension moving through shadows. Looking at them with hungry eyes that didn’t exist. Made his hair stand on its ends. The Nightmare King might not be the greatest threat here, though he couldn’t tell for certain.

”With that in mind...are we fighting the moon? I believe that might be something we have to do,” He questioned this, looking up to the grinning visage that replaced the celestial body. Did it know they were looking back at it? ”So what experience do you two have with fighting eldritch monsters?” As if answered, a large hand, strangely shaped and composed fingers grasped onto one of the many misshapen buildings surrounding them.  A large figure rising even higher, dark as if the shadows themselves had been given form and red slit like eyes spanning across the surface of undulating, liquid yet solid flesh.  A twisted grin set where a mouth might be yet the teeth were more akin to serrated needles.

It was not the only one. More seemed drawn to them, all formed of material that strained the imagination and made him feel queasy.  What were these things? When his world was invaded, nothing like this came to the surface. With their arrival came a black mist that clung low to the streets, subtle agitation coursing through the very nightmare around them.

Such a bright light. So delicious. An overseer and a rabbit too, such perfection. One of them spoke, perfect English as the massive hand of one of them seemed to lash out at him. Far quicker than the size suggested, skin flexible and rubbery as it stretched through the air.  Without thinking he made a sweeping motion of the hand, releasing an arc of gold flames that illuminated the area around him, washing away the flesh of the creature and sending it reeling with a bubbling and melting hand. So, his divine powers held some sway over them.

”Looks like some of them took notice of us.”
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Post by Yang S. January 18th 2023, 7:29 pm

Yang found herself arching a bow in confusion to the man’s words. Was that factoid somehow supposed to waylay her suspicions? She’d decide to take a closer look for herself. Sensing the energy around her, Yang could now see that the man before her was a blazing beacon of light in this other dull and dreary colored realm. The pale blues, grays, and blacks of the nightmare were all but washed out by the man’s radiance. Deciding she’d seen enough and was reassured the man was indeed not part of this nightmare, she’d give him a nod of recognition. “Nice to meet you Cas!” She’d say, holding out her hand for a friendly handshake, an otherwise unnecessary symbol of their newfound partnership.

Before the two could continue however, another voice would ring out across the empty street where Casmaudius and Yang stood. Yang’s eyes lit up slightly, a look of shock and joy painted her face, as her head snapped around to face the direction the voice came from. “Melody!” Yang shouted back, quickly jaunting over to the womans side. “I should have known you wouldn’t stay away from something like this.” Yang said with a bit of snark. While the young Overseer was delighted to see her dear friend, she couldn’t help feel a twinge of dread or worry wash over her. Was it the nightmare or her own emotions making themselves known. Yang knew full well that Melody was a capable and talented fighter, let alone hero, but that didn’t stop her mind from racing with all kinds of thoughts and worries. For Melody’s sake, Yang would have to bring her A game.

Just before the two girls could take any time to catch up, Cas would pose a question, one that while not entirely inclined, Yang felt the need to answer. “Eldritch monsters? No cant say that I have, though one of my fam-” Before she could finish her words, a nasty gnarled hand would reach out from twisted shadows, no doubt the creatures she heard whispering just moments ago. How fitting that they would make their move once the three intruders had gathered together in one place. The grotesquely shaped hand clenched a nearby building, everything about its movements sent slight shivers down Yang’s spine. The way it moved, looked, and sounded, clearly it was meant to elicit some sort of fear-like response from its prey.

It wasn’t just one either. Soon many more of these vile creatures would make themselves known, pouring out from the shadows in all their awful glory.  Yang couldn’t help but grimace at first, though eventually that expression would fade as the first creature that revealed itself spoke. It knew what she was…how? Had it encountered her kind before? It would make sense given their nature, but it was still a little shocking to hear.

Almost as if to capitalize on the sudden confusion, another creature would lash out at the group, its rubbery flesh quickly repelled by Cas’ attack, brilliant golden flames that seemed to sear the flesh of the beast and sent it reeling. Yang still wasn’t entirely sure if these creatures were of the Nightmares making, or if they were poor hapless souls that had been irrevocably changed by the nightmare’s influence, but that wasn’t going to stop Yang from flexing a bit.

She’d turn to face the beast that spoke, her crystal blue eyes suddenly lighting up, glowing, almost burning with energy. “If you know what I am then you know you shouldn’t mess with me.” she’d say, cracking a smirk as a torrent of energy erupted from her body. The wind pressure generated by Yang powering up and drawing upon the energy in her body was enough to slightly influence the heavy fog that had kept in. Electricity began to crackle and arch of of her body, and her hair began to stand on end as it waved playfully in the breeze. She wouldn’t act just yet, instead more interested to see how these things would react.

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Post by Nate6595 January 22nd 2023, 2:28 pm

Alright, at least one friend here. That was good. She was worried when she heard that voice that it would be some illusion or nightmare...Yang? that would've turned hostile on her. This was good, she could work with having a friend. All that was left was to judge if the other here was a part of what was going on or if he was here to help.

Melody stared at the man, and despite his reply to her question she didn't seem ready to let up just yet. She would be ready to jump the man at a word from Yang, ready to take him down. It wasn't until Yang brushed over the question and moved on that Melody relaxed a bit. If Yang was taking the situation casually then she could guess that this person was either friendly, an ally, or at the very least someone they could ignore. She gave a small wave to the new man, "Rabbit Punch or...since Yang name dropped me, Melody." She introduced herself to...Cas? She was pretty sure she heard Yang call the man that. She didn't sound all that bitter at having her real name dropped either.

She smiled over to Yang giving her friend a thumbs up, "Oh yeah, this is gonna be a walk in the park." She said, trying not to let her eyes wander over to the nightmarish hellscape that was all around them. That was a lot easier said than done. She wanted more time to banter with Yang and see what they had last met, and to get to know this guy a better, but well...nightmarish hellscape.

Honestly, it surprised her that they managed this short respite and to get through some brief introductions.

The sounds of the encroaching creatures made her ears flick and stand at their fullest height, alert and ready. Her fists crackled with an orange, lightning-like energy as she was ready to bash into them if they drew too close. Though, like her friend, she held back from just lashing out at them. She didn't have any sort of witty comment to follow up on Yang's initial remark. Instead, she waited along with her allies to see what these shadowy fiends had in store for them, namely looking at Cas to get a read on how the new guy handled a situation like this.

After a moment, she looked back to the fiends and let out a small breath, "You guys, do you think we should spend time of these fellas? I think we're all after the same guy, yeah? If we waste time killing every baddie we come across more innocents are gonna get hurt. We should try and find the source of all of this and take that out so no more spawn in the meantime." She paused for a moment, reconsidering their options, "Unless you guys think if we can take out enough of these that the big man himself will come and take care of us personally."

She looked to the other and cracked a half-grin, "Though, with the latter I don't know of if our host has the hospitality to greet us himself. I think we should just charge forward and track him down." She voted, her fists still at the ready in case those fiends had any idea of trying to jump her while she spoke.
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Post by Demonhunter April 10th 2023, 6:49 pm

All was going great for the pumpkin thus far…. However it began to seem like the inside of Jack’s head began to itch. It was like his brain was threatening self-immolation. The pumpkin kings grabs his gourd, clawing at it before seemingly growing more desprate. His fingernails bending and bleeding as he gouged at it, throwing his head back and screaming into the nightmare moon. “Wait. No! This isn’t part of our deal!” He wails as his congregation suddenly freezes, looking to each other unsure of what to do.

His Jack’s mind, and the mind of another, a voice laden with the void calls. “I have changed nothing. I just have different uses for you now.” The monster calls. “Revenant. Send him home.”

The sounds of thundering horse hooves echo against the desert as the void splits open, sending a horseman barreling into the world of the living with an equine scream shaking silent sand. Zagan carries his rider up the steps to the altar in one leap giving a small rear before the cultists, giving another high pitched squeal. His dead coat flaked with dust colored spots as his skin seemed to be stretched thin over his muscles. The monster looked like a dead horse standing, snorting a plume of steam from under the steel plate armor on it’s face. His jagged and unkempt teeth gnawing against his bit as he begged to run the man-things down or slam his hooved down on the pumpkin headed man before him. As the full plate armored knight seemingly from hell sets his horse down a warhammer thunders down into the orange flesh with a noise so sickening as blood and pumpkin pulp spray across Jack’s frozen congregation as they begin to claw at their own faces. Some dug at their eyes, others ripping hair from scalp as Revenant’s presence drove them mad to their very souls.

“Call it a change in leadership if you will.” A voice smooth as honey and yet unbefitting a hulking beast in the ebony plate. His face is obscured by the eyeless helm as horns curve to each side and from beneath his pauldron flowed a crimson red cloak tattered by flame and ash. The pumpkin king dispatched and his soul shattered into a fine dust, mixing with sand as it began to pull itself through the cracks of the universe, slipping into the void as remnant and reforming as Jack’s soul once more. “Now. To clean out the filth… You're more useful as dust than as flesh.” Damien’s voice never rose in seemingly any emotion, as though what he said was less of an insult and more of a fact as the people around him tore themselves and each other apart as his pressure drove them to horrors beyond comprehension.

The reaver inhale before letting his breath out, a thick red smog exuding from him and expanding, as it touched each human, they suddenly go stiff, jerking a few times before collapsing, their bodies undamaged but souls reduced to its components much as Jacks’ was… Pure remnant dust as Damien reaches down to sift the matter of these people’s souls through his gauntleted hand. Simultaneously the flesh of Jack’s pumpkin and his skull suddenly dip through the void, reaching into Dis and opening several terminals.

From the gaping maw of Dimensions, demons and reavers alike flood from the portals, the demons and void creatures streaming off toward sin city to continue the horrors… the red-cloaked reavers stay behind.

“Tonight is a glorious night.” Damien starts, removing his helmet to reveal eyes full of hatred and bloody tears he refused to weep. “We will free this city of its human disease. Like Dis, the humans here are depraved creatures, knowing nothing of terror or pain, yet never appreciating those who make their lives so. Ride. Liberate their souls of their bodies and bring out the innocent babes to be freed of the shackles of humanity.” It was a speech neither fiery, nor impassioned but rather somber and full of a simmering rage. As if he was too angry to scream with the vitriol anymore. And with that, Damien kicks his horse to ride through the ranks of about 50 reavers. A small army by all means as they follow toward the city to lay siege. He knew there would be those who would try to stop his forces, however this was the first of many experimental expeditions into this world. The Ash Order, just as they once were willing to lay down their lives for their enslavers, were now willing to die for the chance at freedom that the human extermination would allow. All 50 reavers had volunteered for this, all 50 were willing to perish for him.

Cripple this world and his own would be free.
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Post by Casmaudius April 18th 2023, 3:40 am

Cas didn’t know what these things were, but he had a feeling they were not anything good. Something that saw all things good or even just existent, that they would consume anything those strange fingers could grasp.”We shouldn’t spend too much time on these things. Whoever has created this nightmare needs to be stopped as quickly as possible,” Cas quickly said to Melody and perhaps even to Yang, who seemed to have an immense about of power around her. These two seemed like they could protect themselves from whatever roamed the streets of the nightmares.  This was an assumption however, they didn’t jump into the fight like he did.

With fingers wrapped around the hilt of his moonlit sword, Cas’ eyes quickly looked over the massive creatures. Their cries of pain echoed throughout nightmare Vegas, strange blood splattering across the street and washing around his ankles. Cas inhaled, feeling the energy rushing through every muscle and then with a single strong step he was in motion.

A boom exploded outwards from where he stood, and one of the massive eldritch beings was split in half. A massive diagonal cause that sent it falling to the ground below, smashing into a building and bringing it down. Cas appeared once again, blade rammed into the face of another,,flames spilling from various eye holes on its face.

That was two down, and yet even more seemed to emerge from the shadows. With booted feet, pressed against the pliable flesh he kicked off, a bullet that sped through the air and landed a good fifty feet away from where his two impromptu allies were standing. The street barely stood against the impact, but it managed to remain all the same.

”Okay, they are pretty easy to deal with!” He called out, flicking thick globules of blood from his weapon. Things were going well enough but that was all an illusion really. A scream echoed through the nightmare, a roar of betrayal. Something that shook the very fabric of the world around them, causing perceived reality itself to ripple. As if once solid stone beneath his feet became much like liquid.  His true sight was showing him the seams around them becoming unraveled, as if a finger had latched onto and began pulling the fragile threads.

All at once the nightmare became undone and reality unfurled around him. Not to an endless void, but a city radically altered.

Screams still echoed throughout Vegas, creatures of all kinds of shapes were crawling over ruined buildings and some with the desecrated corpses of people in their mouths. Were some of the sleepers awake? He didn’t know but he had hoped so.  Nothing felt different physically but his soul felt a difference, something that made his hairs stand on end.

“What are you?” A voice questioned, and he looked to see a strange person. Human? His golden eyes narrowed, considering the person with a corpse-like palor and various strange markings that decorated its skin. He looked male, though there were strange aspects to their soul and even just appearance. A massive, piglike creature served as his mount, wicked looking spear rested within his hand. Three more of them walked around, flanked by several demonic looking creatures swarming around them as well.

Blades, halberds and the like in hand, brandished as if ready to kill anything that stood in their way. Death swathed in red cloaks.

”I’m...a god,” He answered simply, which didn’t seem to jive with one of them. Because the next moment a blade was coming for his neck, spear launched through the air and then the being suddenly once again grasped onto it. Using their weight to propel it faster forward, and so he brought his blade up. Metal keening against metal and sending the god skidding back a few good feet. Asphalt cracked under the strain, though collateral damage was not his greatest concern when two more blades came like a guillotine from around him, aimed to take his head off.

Giving a brief flair of divine flames he pushed the spear wielder off, twisting his body to block one with blade and grasp the other with a free hand. It bit into his gauntlet, drawing some blood though not doing too much damage from what he could tell. With a harsh wrench, he spun around to slam the reaver into the other. This launched them into the side of a building with an explosion of smoke and dust.

Something large happened and he had to figure out what that was.
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Post by Yang S. April 19th 2023, 1:24 pm

Yang still had her doubts about causing harm to these eldritch abominations looming over them. She couldn’t rightly justify how much they were being messed with and what lasting harm they’d do, if these were actual people’s minds they were colliding with. That said she couldn’t remain idle forever and one thing was certain, these creatures wanted them dead. Seeing Cas leap into action, was enough to spur Yang to join the fray. In the blink of an eye, the young woman would vanish from where she stood, leaving naught but a swirling cloud of fog in her wake. In that same instant she’d appear in the air several feet above one of the monsters.

The energy that once cloaked Yang's body could be seen quickly converging towards a clenched fist Yang held at her side. Yang would swiftly descend upon one of the creatures like a shooting star. Her fist would collide with its face and she’d drive herself downward, collapsing the beast in on itself. The abomination would explode in a cloud of red mist as a small shower of blood would rain down around where it once stood. Things were far from over though, and Yang would spot her next target, exploding forth from the mist of blood Yang would now find herself with her right hand embedded within the body of another beast. A light would begin to shine out of each of the creatures orifices as Yang concentrated some energy into her palm and released it into its body.

In a blinding flash of light and a thunderous boom, the second of Yang’s victims would vanish in a violent explosion of energy. Leaping back to her original position, Yang would take stalk of their situation. The monsters were easy enough to deal with, quite a let down if she were to be honest with herself. More of the beings seemed to emerge from the mist, like the nightmare natural immunity system trying to fight back an infection.

Things seemed to be going their way for the moment but that was all about to change. In the midst of their small skirmish a blood curdling scream would echo throughout the nightmare. A scream that seemed to originate from the nightmare moon in the sky. Something or someone got had gotten to the mad king before the trio could. At least that’s how it appeared to Yang as she looked about the landscape and began to notice its sudden shifting and twisting. Was the nightmare over? No it didn’t feel like it. Instead it seemed as though one nightmare was being replaced by another.

What were once eldritch abomination were now ravenous demons and monsters, prowling the streets for their next meal, and some had seemed to be already feasting. Before the young overseer could make heads or tails of the situation, she was alerted to a nearby struggle. Quickly turning her head in the direction of the noise, she’d find Cas engrossed in a three on one battle. At that moment he managed to repel one of the attackers and Yang wasted little time in removing them from the equation. She’d dash forward nearly at full speed, shoulder tackling the mounted man.

The collision was enough to topple the pig-like beast upon which he road and sent him tumbling to the ground. Wasting little time, Yang would thrust her arm forward in the direction of mount and rider, launching a an orb of energy at them. The moment the volatile orb would connect with the rider it would burst into a sizeable explosion reducing them to ash. “The hell is going on? You two alright?”

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Post by Nate6595 May 7th 2023, 2:29 pm

Uh oh…

Was that…?

Mel’s ears suddenly flicked and shot up. The shifted atop her head as her eyes narrowed; an attempt to pick up that sound that was getting ever closer. The beat hooves? And then there was…oh…something bad was on its way. That wasn’t right though. Something wasn’t the right word for it. It was more like…Somethings? Multiple, a lot…many…too many. They were encroaching around the small band of heroes, swarming them. No…no…that was still wrong. The monsters were swarming the entire city; the heroes were just part of that, somewhere at the front where they could see brunt of it.

They were creatures from the dark and shadows, from places that were nightmares were made of…fitting given where they were. There was no time to warn the others of what was coming, though had already readied themselves, they were preparing themselves, calling upon whatever powers they had. Good, this wouldn’t be fun if she had to do all the legwork.

And so, Melody did the same. She stomped a foot down and it looked as though a bolt of orange lightning struck down upon her. Her body crackled with that bright energy, finding its way over her entire body before amassing in her hands and legs. Her eyes glowed with that energy, and with an excitement that perhaps was too eager for what they had to engage with, a wild and unkempt smile spreading across her face. Everything about her told the same story; this was exactly where she wanted to be. It was why she wanted to be a hero after all; to fight monsters.

Melody suddenly bounded forward, almost an excited childlike to bounce to her step. She took no time to find her target, one of the bastards at the front. “Dibs!” She called out, her eyes fixed on her mark. She collided with a demon near the front; her arm suddenly outstretched and surging with power! Her fist crashed into it, a shockwave of force pulsing outward causing the creature to freeze up suddenly. Where the creature’s stomach had been there was now a gaping hole, one that Melody could peer through and see the next monster that needed felling.

Again, she bounded forward, this time hopping up into the air and sending herself flying towards it. This time her leg rushed with the kinetic force she generated. She crashed into it, literally this time, her extended foot planting itself on the monster’s head and then through it as it burst into a spray of nothingness. She landed a few paces behind it, not bothering to check to see if it had died. The sound of a heavy slump was all the confirmation that she needed to know she had done it.

With this batch done, she hopped back to regroup with the others. She hadn’t used too much energy in those first attacks, she had plenty to spare. At the same time, though, she knew she couldn’t get too overzealous with it…the boss would still need a good beating.

Before she could call out to the others her eyes drew in towards Cas and what he had just uttered. She stared at him for a moment before letting out a sudden snort laugh. “You’re…a god!” She said dramatically and not as a question. She snickered to herself, bringing a hand up to cover her mouth. “Oh man, you’re so dramatic.” She didn’t seem all that bothered that he was being attacked through her spiel, but she knew he could handle it. Despite her thinking he was dramatic, she could at least admit that he was incredibly skilled at what he did.

Then she looked over to Yang and gave her friend a reassuring thumbs up. “Yeah, I’m fin-“ She was suddenly tackled to the ground by one of the demons. It held her down by the neck, its spear lifting up and threatening to come down in a sudden strike against her stomach. A moment before impact, though, there was a sweep of her hand and the creature was sent hurdling towards a nearby group of the monsters, knocking them all asunder. She stood once more and brushed herself off with a sigh. “Yep. All good here.”

She took a few more steps back, trying to create a bit more distance. “We gotta find the boss! If we take them down this horde will be easier to deal with.” She called out to the two. “Any of you two got any way you can draw ‘em out?” She questioned, trying to down another demon that suddenly charged in.
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Post by Demonhunter May 8th 2023, 8:10 pm

The carnage amongst the city only began to bloom as Damien drew closer. His hordes of demons, void beasts, and, most of all, reavers in tow, razed the city as they went. These monsters were much more coordinated than the nightmares Jack had unleashed. The reavers and monsters not preoccupied with the city's saviors were on a search-and-destroy mission. Instead of destroying infrastructure, they clawed their way through windows and doors, carefully selecting targets and slaughtering anything older than a toddler. The infants found themselves swept away, but alive and relatively unharmed. After procuring the valuable objective, the demons and beasts quickly returned to the desert through the portals to Dis. The small group of scouts, demons, and monsters was getting soundly defeated by the three heroes. Just as a reaver was about to charge into battle, it abruptly halted, making an about-face. However, the demons weren't all that intelligent. They continued to relentlessly assault the heroes, with new attackers joining the fray in a semi-coordinated manner as each one fell.

Meanwhile, the main ranks of reavers, armed with lances, and the backline of scouts continued their advance. Another scout hurried down the main street, riding as fast as his horse would carry him. "Dam'ien! There's some resistance ahead. Three Redbloods! One of them claims he's a god."

Damien's amusement triggered a boisterous laughter from the ranks of the reavers around him. "A god, you say? Well, someone quick, go inform the Pope!" The reavers responded with a resounding laughter, their swords beating against shields in approval and hooves stamping against the concrete as the riders urged their horses forward. The heavily armed dreadnaughts swiftly moved to the front of the ranks, creating a mobile wall of armor and bulk. The center reavers, led by Damien, charged ahead slightly, without compromising the integrity of their formation. This change allowed a safe area for the lighter and more agile scouts to ride.

As the scout had reported, three individuals were locked in battle with their demons, while a few of Damien's reavers were in stasis to regenerate, scattered around the fray. "Scouts!" Damien barked, prompting the archers behind him to rise in their saddles, crouching low and preparing arrows shimmering with crackling magic. Simultaneously, they launched the arrows into the air, which arced and screamed through the wind. On their downward descent, the arrows exploded, multiplying into hundreds, then thousands of smaller arrows each. The sky was momentarily cloaked in shadow as they rained down.
The tactic was reminiscent of a Roman bombardment, a strategy Damien had learned in his early life. By bombarding enemies with arrows, stones, and ballista bolts, they became more vulnerable to subsequent attacks. Damien was confident, but he wasn't foolish enough to risk his entire army. Dis was powerless to stop him, but this world didn't seem defenseless. He quickly examined souls to identify his primary targets. One soul pulsated like a rabbit's heart, complete with ears—a girl. Another woman was currently obliterating a second-generation reaver. And then there was a brighter, more anger-inducing soul. These must be his "gods."

"Heavies, continue the ravaging. Scouts, keep the bombardment going. Fan out," Damien growled, urging Zagan forward as he broke away from his dreadnaughts, who were charging off to cause more chaos. His scouts scattered, their horses carrying them past the group, some taking potshots at the enemy as they rode by. Arrows crackled with magic as they streaked through the air, embedding themselves deep into their targets.

"It's hilarious, really," Damien's voice rang out, devoid of any booming quality, but sounding rather weary instead. "My people have suffered for centuries, only for God to show up when we rise above the filth they've cast us in?" His tired tone transformed into bubbling rage as Damien dismounted from Zagan's saddle, dissolving into sulfur and powdered glass. His boots hit the cement with a shattering weight and impact.

His eyeless helmet slumped to the side, its horns grazing his pauldron with the grating noise of fingernails on a chalkboard. Warhammer firmly gripped in his plated gauntlet, crackling with concussive magic, he advanced, heedless of any incoming attacks, trusting his scouts to provide suppressing fire to a significant extent. His sights were set on the bright soul as the scouts began to concentrate their fire on Yang and Mel. The two weaved around each other—whenever one knocked an arrow, the other would swoop in for a drive-by shot. Twelve archers in total, working in perfect coordination.

Meanwhile, Damien made the first move, moving faster than anyone clad in platemail had any right to be, and brought his warhammer crashing upward, aiming to strike the godling under the chin if he was kind enough to stay still. Either way, the reaver was more than willing to try again on the back swing.
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