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Thread: Dark Trap Cube Labyrinth

  1. #1
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    Revenant's Avatar

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    Dark Trap Cube Labyrinth

    [OPEN]

    It hadn't occured to William to bring a torch with him into the Citadel. Because of course it hadn't. Why would it? How many times had William fought in the Citadel? Countless. And how many of those arenas had been lightless, trap-filled iron labyrinth's? After today the sum total would be sitting pretty at one. William grumbled to himself as he hoisted himself onto the ledge of this cube room and slipped through the doorway into the next. Sure he'd fought in dark arenas before, and yes he'd asked the Ai'Brone monks for a challenge, but this was frustrating even by his standards. At least he had the small mercy of having a hint of light by transforming into his war form.

    He spotted the pressure panel on the floor a moment before his clawed foot came down on it. He froze immediately, slowly eyeing the plate until he was sure that he wouldn't trigger whatever it was attached to when he put his foot down. Normally he would trust his destructive enlightenment to show him the breaks and faults where the trap triggers were. In this arena though, the craftsmanship and magic of the monks made it next to impossible for him to detect the various traps in that manner. And that was just the mechanical ones. The first trap that he'd trippered had apparently been heat based.

    The monks must have known that William would have no recourse but to use his war form's molten aura to light his way through their maze and had planned for him to run into the trap immediately. The moment that he'd stepped into the trapped room, the heat of his war form had started melting some wax panels that had been molded to look like the room's rusty iron walls. As the wax had melted, a series of barbed spikes had fired from behind the panel and had stabbed into William's neck and shoulder. It had hurt like hell to tear them free, but William's regenerative powers had sealed the wounds. He supposed it was a cruel form of training on the rules of the arena.

    Now that he knew what to look for, William could see that this entire room was filled with a variety of pressure plates. Rather than take his chances, William cautiosly hauled himself back up over the lip of the passage that led back to the previous room. It was one of six similar passages that each room had. Every room that William had seen was the same cube shape, and the passeges between them were all located in the center of the walls, the floor, and the ceiling.

    He couldnt' go back the way he'd come from, and William couldn't go through the passage to the room with all the trap plataes. That left two other wall, the ceiling, and the floor. William walked to the center of the room and looked down into the looming passage beneath him. He tried to spy what he could from the room below but the darkness was overwhelming. Sighing, he lowered himself to the ground in preparation to drop the ten feet or so down into the lower room.

    Hopefully he ran into his opponent soon. He really, truly felt the need to kill someone.
    Last edited by Revenant; 09-08-2017 at 02:35 PM.
    "I have looked upon all that the universe has to hold of horror, and even the skies of spring and the flowers of summer must ever afterward be poison to me." - Call of Cthulhu

    David vs. Goliath: History's first recorded critical hit.

  2. #2
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    Paladin_Lorenor's Avatar

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    Lorenor looked at the list of combatants waiting to appease The Thayne of War. One name in particular...stood out to The Paladin and brought back a rush of memories. I've fought that man before...back in a past life. I'm certain of it. Lorenor pointed to the name.

    "William Arcus." A hushed set of whispers came from the group of combatants that were waiting in the reception area. "That one."

    The Monk behind that desk had a wide eyed expression for a long moment. "My lord?" The Monk proceeded to protest. "I am not certain that is a wise idea...he is quite strong that Revenant you see."

    Lorenor shook his head. "Spare me your concern." Lorenor said and continued. "I have fought and beaten him before...I think...I need to challenge myself anyway."

    "Be mindful of that arena we constructed for him. It's a death trap." The Monk warned.

    "Then I shall take him down with me. Light willing." Lorenor said carefully. Lorenor gathered the information of the combat arena and proceeded to venture forward.

    ***

    The Darkness. Making things relatively difficult to see within the arena itself...Lorenor sighed. He allowed the warmth of The Holy Light to fill his undead physique and calm himself. He knew William had grown strong since their last meaning...but in some ways...so had Lorenor. In his time, Lorenor left behind the curse that N'Jal had placed on him. Further...he'd evolved into something beyond what his mind could comprehend. His body glowed with the energies of The Holy Light. Around him he saw darkened black walls, and nearly straight walls and a ceiling of maddening height. Some of the hallways contained odd angles at their structure. Lorenor had seen such places before. It's an actual relic...like what The Thaynes often construct. I must be careful when I hunt William. Lorenor saw that certain of the panels on the floor and walls were oddly shaped, indented. He made a mental note of those. Likely traps...I must be careful...but when I find William...I must defeat him.

    Lorenor walked off into the hallway proceeding to search for William. He did not have any sense of direction, or depth. He only knew that he was inside of the relic itself. Ultimately, he was at the mercy of the cube. As he moved, he moved carefully making sure he didn't accidentally trigger any of the many traps that were within the cube itself. Something on one of the walls caught his eyes. They were eldritch runes that seemed familiar to him...writings from the many volumes of The Thayne Codex. Lorenor's initial suspicions were correct. We're inside a Thayne relic...perhaps...this place has a deeper meaning... Lorenor made his way through the passages and hallways of the cube as he searched for William Arcus.

    How big is this place...? Lorenor had to wondered. He stopped for a moment to gather his thoughts. He looked at the information The Monk gave him on the combat arena. As he looked at the forms...he noticed something was odd about the documents and vellum. In blood, was written the phrase...You are Trapped... over and over...filling up the expanse of the pages. Lorenor sighed. Damned Monks... He'd memorized some of the information he'd initially seen. He should have known The Monks would play their tricks on him...

    Lorenor took the documents and placed them back in his packs. He would throw it back in The Monk's faces later on...

    And so The Hunt began.

  3. #3
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    Revenant's Avatar

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    Though he tried to be quiet as he dropped into the room beneath him, William found that intentions didn’t always match reality. He was skilled and agile, but there was nothing that he could do to cushion the noise that snapped out when the bone carapace on his legs smacked the steel plated floor of the room below. William instantly went still, listening to the echo of the crack spreading from one room to another. He continued to wait even once the noise had died down, listening for any sign that his noise had been heard.

    Nothing.

    Sighing, William relaxed and looked around. The dim glow of his molten core was barely enough to illuminate the room but there wasn’t much to see. This room looked exactly the same as every other room in the maze that William had crossed. He wasn’t sure if it was a lack of imagination on the monks’ part or simply something that they didn’t think mattered in the pitch black environment. Or perhaps it was just another trap to confuse him so that he’d be more likely to stumble into one of the cube’s many death traps. Probably a bit of all three, but William guessed the third option was the most likely.

    William took a step into the room, trying to peer through the dark portal which led to the next room on this floor. It was a futile task but still he didn’t let up. If there was any chance that he was going to get out of this alive he knew that he’d need to keep his wits about him and plan his moves well in advance.

    Three steps into the room William realized that he’d made a mistake. A sharp metallic whine filled the room. Instinct kicked in and William turned without thinking and dove headlong into the dark hole in the center of the room. It was another ten foot drop to the next floor down and it would hurt to slam into the rusty steel plates at this speed but it was far better than the alternative.

    Only the revenant’s supernaturally enhanced speed allowed him to clear the room before the trap went off. Even so, he felt a slight tug on the end of his warscythe as he fell into the abyss. He caught a flash of silver as the glistening wire tightened overhead, a mesh which spun across the chamber with dizzying speed.

    William grunted in pain as his shoulder connected with the steel of the room below. Something inside the joint gave way with a burst of pain and he bit down hard to keep from crying out. He lay stunned for a moment and then rolled over, letting his regeneration wash away the pain in his shoulder and savoring the taste of blood on the back of his tongue. The pain faded quickly and William grudgingly pushed himself to his feet, glaring up at the trapped room above.

    “Too damned close,” William grumbled, lifting the haft of his scythe and looking at where the trap wire had caught it. To his surprise the magically hardened stone had been cut clean through, leaving nothing but a polished smooth angle a hand span above where the bottom of the weapon had been only moments before. If he had been any slower, or if he hadn’t possessed his supernatural speed, William knew that he would have been caught up in that wire and been cut to ribbons.

    Another sound reached William as he glared into the darkness overhead. There was someone nearby, he realized, and there was no way that his plunge hadn’t been heard. William eyed the room around him, wondering if this room was trapped as well.
    "I have looked upon all that the universe has to hold of horror, and even the skies of spring and the flowers of summer must ever afterward be poison to me." - Call of Cthulhu

    David vs. Goliath: History's first recorded critical hit.

  4. #4
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    Paladin_Lorenor's Avatar

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    Lorenor's eyes narrowed as a figure came cashing into the chamber from somewhere above.

    Lorenor held his weapon at the ready and sighed then he stepped forward. Stopping a few paces away from William Arcus. Memories flooded his mind...memories of a past life...a past self. "William Arcus." Lorenor said calmly. "It has been a long time, old friend." The old Paladin, Lorenor, was different in his current life. He was still Undead, but at the same note The Holy Light had evolved him into something far greater. "I see you have grown considerably stronger." Lorenor added.

    The memories were still flooding into his mind.

    The other battle, Lorenor had barely pulled out a victory against the formidable foe. But it was a different Lorenor, at a different evolutionary cycle. Lorenor held his weapon at the ready but before that he nodded a respectful greeting towards William Arcus. "You've aged well." Lorenor said calmly, there was no malice in his voice. "The Monks tried to talk me out of fighting against you. But me and you have unfinished business." Lorenor explained. Lorenor held his claymore with one hand at that point and noticed William held a long-hafted Scythe as his primary weapon.

    "Tell me, Revenant. Are you ready for battle?" Lorenor smiled at that point, and his body began to glow with the powers of The Holy Light.

  5. #5
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    Revenant's Avatar

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    “Lorenor,” William’s words betrayed his surprise. He had faced dozens of opponents in the Citadel and would be hard pressed to remember even a tenth of them. But there was no way that he'd ever forget his fight with the undead warrior. It was the first time that William had found himself completely outclassed by an opponent and it had left an impression that was very likely the reason William had sought to strengthen himself in match after match. William grinned. Lorenor was a better than he could have hoped for in these dark, rusted tunnels.

    He shifted weight, assuming a guarded combat stance and looked Lorenor over with a discerning eye. He had changed a great deal since the last time he’d been face-to-face with the mutant and it quickly became apparent that Lorenor had changed just as much. But just as the years had strengthened William and transformed him into a powerful combatant, time seemed to have changed Lorenor’s form even more. Gone was the aura of dark strength that William had come to associate with him memory of Lorenor. Instead, he faced a holy creature who was still in the early stages of gathering his strength.

    “Interesting,” he growled.

    When they’d first faced each other, William had done so with nothing but his claws and his rage. He looked down at the sundered warscythe in his hand. The wire trap in the room above had cleaved the counter-weight off the end of the weapon and William didn’t need his destructive enlightenment to tell that the weapon was little more than a heavy, unwieldy hacking instrument at the moment. Even a blunt hunk of wood was a deadly instrument in his hands the match of even a magnificent blade, but there was something poetic in having his weapon taken away from him when made to stand in front of his old foe.

    William turned a savage grin in Lorenor’s direction and tossed the blade down the dark pit in the center of the room. Lorenor had done something similar in their first encounter, only he’d simply dropped his sword at his feet. William had tried to take advantage of that by taking the blade for himself. As much as he wanted to mirror that encounter, his warscythe’s enchantment was far too dangerous to leave for a complete reversal of fate.

    “I’m ready now, dead man,” William said and then charged at his foe.
    "I have looked upon all that the universe has to hold of horror, and even the skies of spring and the flowers of summer must ever afterward be poison to me." - Call of Cthulhu

    David vs. Goliath: History's first recorded critical hit.

  6. #6
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    Paladin_Lorenor's Avatar

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    Memories from a past life flashed in the mutant paladin's mind.

    The weapon clinging on the ground reminded Lorenor of something he'd done once. In their past meeting...something...fitting. He has honour I must honour in exchange. Deciding that fair was fair, Lorenor sheathed his claymore back in it's scabbard and eyed William.

    William became as a blur moving rapidly towards Lorenor. The old Paladin carefully reacted and felt his energy lighting up around his body, The Holy Light. No sound, no noise no screams. Merely purely instinctive reaction. They had met a long time ago under far different circumstances. Lorenor reached forward as The Revenant came crashing in and simply reacted. His hands and his body flared up with the tremendous weight of The Holy Light. He reached forward in an attempt to grab at William's face and Smite him at point-blank range. It was a bold reaction to a dangerous opponent, but he wanted to have the upper hand early. Only decisive action would win the battle.

    Lorenor's hands glowed brightly and he stood in place as he released his power towards the general direction of William's face. The Smite would be extremely dangerous if his opponent harboured Evil, The Darkness, in his heart. Lorenor accepted the full on tackle as William came crashing in. Ribs broke, but the mutant could function with his faith. He just wanted to be certain that he'd effectively burned William just as effectively.

    When the exchange was over, Lorenor found himself on the floor, sliding several paces away. He's grown strong and fast. This will be a difficult test but I have Faith. He does not. Blood already trickled down the side of Lorenor's mouth. BLACK blood...the sign of Undeath. Lorenor's body ached from the initial tackle but he was certain William would be worse off. Lorenor wiped the blood off the side of his face. Gotta make every moment count...the longer this goes on... Lorenor shook his head. "How's your face William?" Lorenor taunted and smiled calmly.

  7. #7
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    Revenant's Avatar

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    [bunnying approved]

    It was refreshing to for William to engage with someone on his own level for once. Lorenor was just as savage as he remembered throwing his own weapon away so that the two of them could claw and crush one another like the monsters they were. Their last fight had started similarly, but neither man was the same as they'd been those long years ago.

    William slammed into Lorenor, savoring the feel of the creature's body giving way beneath him. Something inside the undead snapped and the chamber filled with the smell of old, sluggish blood. True to his nature, Lorenor stoically accepted the crashing attack and simply bore down into it, hammering on the side of William's head with heavy fists. The punishing blows blazed with radiant energy which burned hotly against William's charred flesh.

    Demonic was a phrase often attributed to the revenant. The truth of it was that he'd only earned that moniker for the twisted way he looked and not for possessing any true demonic heritage. Still, evil is evil, and William had committed enough atrocities to earn that title a thousand times over. While he held no particular weakness to Lorenor's holy smite, the attack still struck him with its full force.

    It had been a long time since anything had burned William and he found the sensation oddly frustrating. He staggered, letting Lorenor slump away from him without a follow-up attack. When they'd first fought, Lorenor had landed a similar blow, minus the holy light, and it had crushed William's skull like an egg. This time the searing punch had savages a good chunk of flesh from his temple across to the top of the ridge of his right eye. Annoyingly, what remained of his ear swung lightly by a thin strip of flesh. It was quite distracting.

    William spat at Lorenor's feet, noting that his mouth had somehow filled with the bright molten blood that flowed through his veins. It sizzled where it struck the rusty floor grating.

    "I've had worse," he said in reply to Lorenor's taunt. Normally William found amiable chatting in the middle of a fight horribly offensive, but this time he found himself rather enjoying the ordeal. Besides, it gave his regenerative powers a chance to start repairing the damage that Lorenor's attack caused.

    "A little trade-off for first blood," he continued. "But given that I'm feeling generous, I think you've earned a little something for the effort." William blurred into motion, pulling the loose tattered bit of his ear free with a sharp pop and threw it towards Lorenor. Covered in molten blood as it was, even that scrap of flesh could be dangerous. But hurting Lorenor with an errant scrap of flesh wasn't William's intent. The moment Lorenor's eyes flicked from him to the makeshift missile, William lunged forward again. His clawed hand gripped the front of Lorenor's leather jerkin. With his supernatural strength and speed it was easy for William to simply lift his opponent and, with a push, hurl the creature through the portal behind him into the dark room beyond.

    William didn't know if that particular room held a trap but it didn't really matter. If there was a trap and Lorenor died, then he won. If Lorenor survived then their little back-and-forth would go on just a little longer. He was starting to have fun.
    Last edited by Revenant; 10-19-2017 at 12:05 AM.
    "I have looked upon all that the universe has to hold of horror, and even the skies of spring and the flowers of summer must ever afterward be poison to me." - Call of Cthulhu

    David vs. Goliath: History's first recorded critical hit.

  8. #8
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    Paladin_Lorenor's Avatar

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    Memories poured in the old Paladin's mind.

    More images, thoughts and feeling.

    The other time he met William Arcus. Lorenor strangely found himself laughing at the situation at hand. He knew he was greatly outmatched, but he would take his fate like a Man. Loenor landed with a crashing thud in the room further ahead. He laid there for a moment or a two gathering himself. But the laughter, the old laughter remained. He stood up slowly at that point...managing to stand up to his full height again. William was already upon him at that point, and Lorenor was prepared.

    He continued his command of The Holy Light, feeling the comforting energies pour through his broken vessel. Blood freely poured from his mouth at that point. But Lorenor felt no pain. He was already numb from the broken ribs. He didn't know how he would continue going in, but he had Faith. And that was all that mattered to the old Paladin. Lorenor's eyes glowed brightly as William was upon him again. At that point, Lorenor struck out again. William came dashing forward....

    Like striking a Steel door...

    A statue made of marble...

    Many thoughts cascaded in his mind. But he stood stalwart, brave, defiant. His power coursed through his hands one time and he held both fists together. He swung upward towards William's neck at that point for a quick moment, attempting to use the man's momentum against him. He's fast...but if I can just time this correct...I might buy myself more time. With glowing hands, his power focused with pin point and lethal intent, he aimed for the man's neck.

    He swung upward attempting to intercept the man...

  9. #9
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    Revenant's Avatar

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    William charged after Lorenor, his molten blood hammering in his ears. But even with his battle lust raging, William was remembered that the labyrinth itself was also their opponent this day and he slowed in the doorway to the next chamber. He didn’t pause long, only long enough to check that Lorenor’s entry hadn’t triggered another of the maze’s traps, and then resumed his charge.

    Brief as the pause was however, it was long enough for the mutant to get his feet back under him. Lorenor met William’s second charge with unflinching calm, summoning his holy light a second time and thundering upwards at him in a two-fisted strike that would be enough to take William’s head clean off if it connected. There weren’t many warriors of Lorenor’s type left in the Citadel, men who chose to gamble everything on a single strike when facing a superior foe rather than fleeing and attempting to maneuver something else to their advantage. William had always been of that sort himself, and he’d always respected that fighting spirit. But then, he thought, any wounds inflicted on him would be healed by his regenerative ability. Perhaps there was a reason he was one of the last stand-and-fight types.

    As experienced as William was, he knew that there were half a dozen ways he could block or dodge Lorenor’s attack and retaliate with a mortal or crippling blow. But the crimson rage was boiling inside him now, the old berserker’s joy of slaughter. A hint of the old William was beginning to spill through the gaps of his control and he was interested to see just how much of it his old enemy could draw out.

    Instead of striking out with a killing blow to end the fight early, William instead relied on a flash of insight from the training he’d gone through with one of his mentors. The mystic giant, Steppenwolf Orlouge, had possessed an eccentric demeanor and a ridiculous fighting style, but the man had also been a master strategist and had been one of the few who really understood just what William had been capable of. One of the ridiculous moves that he’d taught William had been a move called Snapping Turtle Bites The Gracious Hand That Feeds It, a name that William always suspected was more a dig at him than a proper name for the maneuver. William remembered Snapping Turtle, as he much more sanely called it, but never found himself in a situation in which it would be useful. Surprisingly, this was exactly that.

    William executed Snapping Turtle, which consisted of clamping down on the floor as hard as he could with the claws on his feet to anchor himself while at the same time twisting his hips one way and his shoulders the other. All of this while bending his knees as sharply as he could. This had the effect of completely annihilating any sort of balance or control that William had over his own motion, but it also whipped him into a low horizontal position that maintained most of the momentum of his charge.

    Snapping Turtle did as intended and turned William from a charging man into a low flying missile weapon. The advantage of Snapping Turtle over simply performing a leaping tackle was that the maneuver dropped his body instantly rather than arcing forwards slowly. The downside was that it put him so low that the only place he would be able to physically strike Lorenor to any effect would be the knees. Still it was better than taking an explosive uppercut to the jaw.

    He punched out the instant he dropped under the level of Lorenor’s devastating punch in a two-fisted strike of his own. William balled his clawed hands into tight fists, coming in at Lorenor’s knees like a freely swinging battering ram. It was only at this point that William noticed the looming darkness immediately behind Lorenor. William closed his eyes and gritted his teeth with the knowledge that he was about to take another unprepared dive down another fifteen foot drop, regardless of whether he struck Lorenor or not. He could only hope that he managed to take Lorenor with him.
    "I have looked upon all that the universe has to hold of horror, and even the skies of spring and the flowers of summer must ever afterward be poison to me." - Call of Cthulhu

    David vs. Goliath: History's first recorded critical hit.

  10. #10
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    Paladin_Lorenor's Avatar

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    It...

    It all happened very quickly. Strangely, he didn't feel pain at that point But rather his thoughts had gone to that of an old ally. Sei Orlouge. While the old Hero had been looking for an Artifact of N'Jal origin, he stumbled across Lorenor in one of his past selves. One of many past selves, across time...space...all the dimensions and alternate realities of Althanas. Seeing William Arcus perform that Orlouge technique put a smile on his face. He's grown strong since the last time... Lorenor's hammer-hand style attack completely missed it's mark when William struck him in point-blank range.

    The Snapping Turtle technique met it's mark. Very few combatants could best a Orlouge technique of martial skill. Lorenor was knocked backwards and sent flying back several paces, tumbling and rolling like a rag doll. Like so much trash.

    Yet despite that...the fucker smiled. Through all the pain he currently felt, he could not help but feel tremendous pleasure. Another set of memories passed through his mind and he recalled his only relationship with the Vampire named Urei. Lorenor saw the man's face for a moment in his mind, and it gave him strength to keep going. "That's an Orlouge technique. Fucker...wasn't expecting that shit." Lorenor managed to stand up at that point after that, driven by the strength of The Holy Light. At that point, the mad laughter returned. It had been a long time since the last time that Lorenor had truly been able to cut loose.

    And let every ounce of frustrations, and a long list of failures erupt in his mind. So Lorenor allowed himself the pleasure of simply feeling pain. It was real, one of the truest of emotions. Pain was very close to love. "There is love, and emotion in your attacks. You've changed...William Arcus." It was oft said that you ever only knew someone when you FOUGHT them at with no holds barred. Lorenor respected the monster before him...he respected the man's strength. And before him, in the eyes of William Arcus...Lorenor had not seen something disgusting. No...he saw true beauty there. Lurking beyond the maddening rage. Lorenor began to walk forward and towards William. "Let us continue this dance." Lorenor said. "My old friend. Would you go back to a world...that shuns you and I? Loathes what we have become?"

    "Let us show these foolish worshipers of Blood and War what it truly means to fight...and DIE on the mantles of blood." On the verge of death, Lorenor lost all pretense of sanity. One of his glowing blue eyes was blood-shot and enlarged. Bleeding black blood. His body was broken and in incredible amounts of pain. But still, the old Paladin had not stopped wanting to fight. He would never give in...not one ounce to the warrior before him...or ANY warrior. Lorenor was undeniably hurt. Several broken ribs, limping, one arm completely tattered and in ruins. Still. He stood, still he would fight. A fire burned in his undead heart. Just like William...Lorenor was ALSO a monster. And fight they WOULD...

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