Protectors of the Holy


Hentaispider

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#1
It is the twilight hour in the jungles of Ar Dra Kaan, and the last public seremony of the day, lead by the clerics of Sel, is just concluding at the top of the ziggurat temple of Draeksum. The chanting echoes loud and clear across the stony rooftops of the nearby buildings, the mudhuts of unimportant workers, now returning to their homes at the end of a day spent under the scorching sun and all the way to the outer walls of the town, held by forces both imperial and temple, ever-vigilant for another raid by the wicked snake-people. It even reaches the inner chambers of the library, once renowned for its collections of poetry and astronomy, now slowly crumbling under the relentless assault of the jungle while the now sole librarian fights a hopeless battle against rot and decay that threaten tomes that were once so short-sightedly painted on paper instead of being carved in metal or stone, now more valuable than many of the ones made of copper plates.

It had been an uneventful week in the temple of Draeksum and in the town itself, as well: No Yuan-ti raids, no signs from the gods, not even orders from the imperial government. That is not to say that the temple guardians had been allowed to be idle: Preparations towards fighting off further raids, scouting parties, plans for attacking the nearest viper nest and management of prisoners all had to be done. It would seem that some of them, at least, would be given more interesting - and therefore likely more deadly - duties, for come nightfall a select group had been summoned to the underground chambers of Ossial, the head priestess of Sel.
 

Tassadar

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Nov 10, 2008
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#2
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Shulka Samuta had been present for those last rights of the day, as he always was when he had the chance. It was no duty that he took lightly to honor the gods, and though he had many duties in defending the community around the temple he always took an opportunity to observe the simpler rituals when given the chance. Now, however, he was heading towards a more immediately important duty, the call of the head priestess of Sel to the chambers in the lower portions of the temple. It was a rare thing for him, a simple temple guard, to see such chambers, at least in his mind, and that he had been summoned could only mean that he was going to be given an important assignment.

Feeling no need to go armed and armored, Shulka approached while still clad in his finery, or at least the closest he had to such. Even his ritual robes, mostly red but with black embroidery signaling him as a favored of Scar, the god of war, were relatively simplistic and even slightly worn. The hulking lizardman stood hunched, his massive frame stretching nearly seven feet tall when he stood fully erect but in his more normal posture hitting only about six. His clawed feet scraped against the stone floor as he walked, and though he was unarmed and without the fearsome bone mask that he wore into battle or the greatsword that he favored the blue-scaled warden was still an at least mildly intimidating sight, even to those on the same side.

Beady orange eyes took in his surroundings slowly but methodically, his expression and mannerisms respectful as he made for the chamber where the priestess waited, taking stock of any others who were waiting carefully and otherwise following the proper procedures for such a visit.
 

SirOni

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Nov 11, 2008
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#3
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ez'Raq grumbled quietly to himself. The small, slender lizard spent much of his time alone, locked away in his workshop with his corpses and chemicals and books, studying the inner workings of the enemies of his people, and how best to use that information against them to better kill them. This, suddenly being called for out of the blue, wasn't something Ez'Raq was comfortable or happy with, especially when it could potentially involve having to spend extended periods of time out of his comfort zone. No, his workshop was his home, his life, and to be plucked from it didn't settle well. Nothing good could come from this, he thought.

He had always been uncomfortable around other people, and not just those outside of his own race. Being the runt of his clutch Ez'Raq had always been smaller than the other lizardfolk, a fact that he hated. Though his lithe build did have its advantages. He could go and do things his more physically imposing brethren couldn't, and instead of focusing his skills on war he spent the time in isolation, sharpening his mind. Those years alone however affected his social skills, he disliked being around people, growing more agitated and hostile the more people that were around.

Ez'Raq pulled his viscera-stained patchwork robes tightly against his body, lumps forming where the fabric stretched over the containers strapped to his bandoliers and glared at passers-by, beady yellow eyes peering through the shadows shrouding his pale green face as he made his way towards the priestess' chambers. He knew not the reason why he was summoned, just that it was inconveniencing him and had every intention of getting whatever it was done as soon as possible so he could go back to doing what he did best, that is pouring over his studies.
 

Caulder

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Nov 21, 2008
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#4
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ezra the Frozen Claw hummed a light tune as he moved through the temple, his slender frame and practiced footwork taking him towards his destination of the chambers of Ossial. It was strange for the lanky lizard to have been called upon by anyone, especially one of Sel's chosen. Then again, he was rarely around long enough to be known well. Having travelled far and wide, he wondered why he had stopped at this temple for so long, and to make matters more confusing, people were beginning to rely on him. But, such is the fate of a wandering healer.

His seven-foot form, covered by a loose-fitting brown cloth robe and cloth wraps, as well as a matching cloth hood cloaking his head in shadow, does nothing to hide the dark green scales of his legs, arms, and tail, or the large stone amulet of Ast he wears around his neck. He carries naught but a thick backpack on his back, and his long claws click on the ground with each step, his hands folded together. He moves and acts as if nothing in the world can bother him, and if one were to look closely, they might even catch sight of a very thin mist falling from his feet and hand wraps. Intent on finding out just what use a wandering healer could be to a Priestess of Sel, he stalks the corridors, giving a somewhat friendly wave to any he passes, before folding his hands back together and continuing his walk.
 

Zilrax

Master of Kinky Fetishes. Or just Bitch if you pre
Dec 13, 2013
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#5
Re: Protectors of the Holy

"I'm just saying, we could get so much done in the time we are spending over here." "Think of all the prey we could catch. So much to devour." "Your opinions have been noted, but in case you have forgotten, we cannot enact culural-" "And racial" "-And racial, reform if we are not in the good graces of them. Nor if the blasted snakes enslave them all. We are allowed to remain and to care for our kin for as long as we are useful. So in otherwords, it is in our best interests to be of aid if we wish to reach our ideals. And we can eat all the yuan-ti we desire as well this way."

The conversation continued as the figure moved down through the temple for the chambers of Ossial. She was tall and muscular, wearing thick but fancy clothing, and a cape of hydra skin, much like her clothes. Her jade hued scales seemed to writhe at various times, as though activity was occurring beneath it. But what usually drew eyes were the trio of hydra heads attached to long powerful necks, chatting to each other. One had a reddish gold set of eyes, another a brilliant blue, the last a deep green.

Vas'is, Sivas, and Aviss paid little mind to those around them as they walked, her often considered an oddity, abberation or worse. But she knew these were born of ignorance and fear. Times were changing. War continued and unless they changed and adapted, they would lose. She would show through action that their way was the future. She was only the first.
 
Dec 14, 2008
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#6
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Kriza paced along a ways behind the three-headed lizard folk in front of her. When she had first spotted a glimps of one of the heads on a long neck from the far end of a walkway, her first thought was that they were being invaded again, and had immediately started to tail her. Now that she had a better look, it was more of a curiosity, as the being in front of her didn't look the part of a yuan-ti anywhere else. The fact that they seemed to be headed in the same direction was even more surprising. She kept her distance for now, though no longer attempted to hide her presence.

Her own home temple was deeper into imperial territory, though not as far as the elders would like, once the front moved this far in. She was old and experienced enough to undergo her coming-of-age ritual, and so was let out into the world. As was the norm, she would roam until she experienced what they called a moment of clarity. Exactly what that was wasn't explained to her, except that she would know it when it happened.

So here Kriza was for now, aiming to help push back the yuan-ti, or at least stall them as she could, before she felt the need to be elsewhere. Dressed in simple clothing in jungle colours over the chain shirt she wore, with her bow and quiver on her back and a dagger on her belt, striding towards a meeting with the head priestess here. It didn't even occur to her to disarm, having just spent three nights at a watch post towards their enemy's lines, and with the constant threat of attack even at the temple.

Entering Ossail's chambers, she gave a short bow. "Blessed be thee, Head Priestess." She said simply, following her own tradition on the matter, remaining silent afterwards until needed.
 
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Dragontear

Grim Reaper
Oct 7, 2010
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#7
Re: Protectors of the Holy

(Sincere apologies for taking so long, nearly 4AM at time of posting, so if this seems awry, that may have something to do with it. Sleep-schedule bed damned.)

Blackness was all that is seen as he rested his mind, eyes closed in placid assurance of safety for himself and the female nearby. His consciousness wandered freely as he meditated, as it often did, trying with lackadaisical determination to re-organize memories of the past and the present, of the facts left behind to wither in the dark recesses of his feral mind and the facts spoken or shown to him now, what he knew to be relevant or easier to recall at a long moment's notice. Rhurjo, no great or legendary name given to him as much as a mere classification to identify him with words only. Paladin, something the much-loved Priestesses of the home-temple spoke of him with smiles upon their slender muzzles, how his heart warmed with joy yet he utterly refused to bask in such minor adoration, humble monster he was, still is.

By virtue of training he is apt in the 'art' of watching his surroundings, even when the mind moves to the back of the stage to rest as his senses continued to perform at the front with hearty enthusiasm despite such a supposedly dull activity... Yet for one moment of many, the male was caught being absent-minded again, so deep in thought after hearing hushed words and vocalised concerns that he was unaware of people entering the chamber, grand and utilitarian as it always was.

The coolness of night teased his skin, disruption of the air suggested movement nearby, accompanied by the sounds of various foot-falls and respectful greetings, pleasantries that he always appreciated. Far off silver-blue eyes opened and beheld a small collection of unusual, sometimes-seen individuals in their various robes or cloaks..

He of the warrior's great build in crimson and night, ferocious, fanatical. The Little One of concoctions, beady-eyed secluded nature. The Frozen Claw's slender, un-assuming frame not far away, contrasted by the three-headed... hybrid? His mind raced sluggishly to clarify her name, names? She alone seemed to stand out by merely being here. Then there was another female... he couldn't recall her name, but her feminine scent at least gave him some form of identity - she had the tool of killing from afar and simple clothing, unassuming, too.

Standing nearly eight feet with a slender yet heavy build, his eyes gentle shone in curiosity to the occurrence tonight, seemingly pure compared to his marred face and wild-looking hair-spires. He wore his comfortable green shawl over the shoulders, underneath his protruding chest and slim stomach were wrapped in leather-cloth material as where his bony shoulders and long, knobbly arms. He wore something of a banded kilt and further wrappings below, leading to the large clawed feet which easily supported his dense weight. His spear and shield were hefted calmly, the pole-arm standing against the floor, the latter loose but ready to protect the powerful female nearby.

Inanimate as he was, blending into the surrounding architecture with some ease, the beastly male made little audible noise and less movement to be important enough to be noticed, like a living statue. Rhurjo himself stood a mere dozen or so feet away, behind the wizened Priestess and to one side of her great, paper-covered desk. He only announced his presence by emitting a lyrical rumble of sorts, head dipped - he preferred to speak when spoken to, over-wordy pretenses of greetings bypassed with vibrations pushed out by large, distended lungs and powerful vocals.

Thus he waited, sharp eyes trained onwards, seemingly into another world.
 
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Hentaispider

Lord of the Tap Dance \oO.Oo/ (And Reputation Mana
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#8
Re: Protectors of the Holy

The door to the head priestesses chambers is open, revealing a study decorated with dark motifs: the floor is covered with pelts of great cats, one wall has a great tapestry depicting Sel striking a bargain with the great dragon-sage Throvadronix, another has a pair of paintings and a door to her quarters. There's also a bookshelf, filled with texts both religious and magical. In the middle of it all is a great desk covered with papers behind which the priestess is seated upon a comfortable chair. Though aged and frail looking with a lithe frame, there is steel in her eyes and she is surrounded by an aura of wisdom and power. "Welcome. Please be seated." In front of the desk, there are five simpler chairs.
 

Tassadar

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Nov 10, 2008
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#9
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Shulka would offer a silent bow and obey the priestess's instructions, taking the center chair before any of the others could.
 
Dec 14, 2008
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#10
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Kriza sat as well after offering her greeting, taking the chair on the priestess' far right, glancing around lightly at the decorations and others assembled with a passive expression, though she lingered on the Liza with multiple heads once again, unable to completely still her wary thoughts about that one in particular.
 

SirOni

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Nov 11, 2008
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#11
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ez'Raq followed behind the rest of the group as they entered the priestess' chambers, his eyes flicking between the people as he kept some distance between him and them, though lingering on the three-headed woman. Not one to linger he stood rather than take the seat offered, choosing the one closest to the doorway, and gripped the back of it with slender fingers.

"Why were we called here?" The young lizard asked without any of the courtesy of his peers, and a hint of annoyance in his raspy voice.
 

Zilrax

Master of Kinky Fetishes. Or just Bitch if you pre
Dec 13, 2013
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#12
Re: Protectors of the Holy

"We are observed. We should solve this." "That's part of living with others. For now we are not the norm. For now. Now hush, we're here."

Vas'is moved into the chamber, two of her heads peering about, while another glared back behind her. She held her hands behind her back, to show her claws were not bared and she was not hostile as she noted the impressive guard behind the priestess. At the priestess' beckoning, she took a seat on the far left.

Sivas looked the others over curiously, while Vas'is sat calmly, smoothing her clothes out and awaiting to hear what she had been called in for. Aviss meanwhile watched warily for threats and potential meals, especially eyeing the one behind them, disliking having other behind them.
 

Caulder

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Nov 21, 2008
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#13
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ezra strides into the room, taking the one remaining seat for himself after bowing to the priestess, his hood remaining up to cover his head as he places his hands together and waits for the Priestess to respond to the younger lizard.
 

Hentaispider

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#14
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ossial pauses, waiting for everyone to take seats, then begins talking again slowly. "Each of you has... proven yourself to be moderately competent in the past, so I have chosen to give you a chance to prove yourself further." The priestess reaches into a pile of papers to pull what seems like a well-worn map and starts tracing lines on it with her fingers before letting out a sigh and continuing. "There is an abandoned shrine to The Dragon of the Night Sky south of the town. It's about two days travel along the road, then you should see some ruined walls to the west of the road. The shrine itself is in what once was a mithril mine. We believe the yuan-ti have desecrated the shrine. We believe that the gods - ALL the gods - will be pleased if you cleanse it again with yuan-ti blood."
 

Tassadar

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Nov 10, 2008
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#15
Re: Protectors of the Holy

The tale offered by the priestess caused Shulka to bristle with rage, the news of a shrine desecrated by the wretched yuan-ti making the temple guardian's cold blood boil. "Yes my priestess," he hissed, already mentally preparing himself for the journey and the blood that would be spilled on arrival, "at once my priestess!" Then he would wait to be dismissed, the fanatical warrior not even thinking to ask any questions, believing that the voice of the gods had spoken all that he needed to know. He would wait until dismissed nonetheless, however, and while the guardian would narrow his eyes should any others think to ask anything tactically pertinent he wouldn't begrudge them the opportunity, and would listen carefully. If any of these less faithful servants tried to waste the priestess's time, however....
 
Dec 14, 2008
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#16
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Kriza stiffened a bit at mention of her own god, Her tail flicking lightly once, then falling still again. "It will be done, Head Priestess." She confirmed, glancing around at the others assembled. At first glance, she didn't believe any of the others followed that particular god, but looks could be deceiving. And it didn't matter anyways. Most lizardfolk were respectful enough to all their gods, and certainly more so in circumstances such as this.
 

Zilrax

Master of Kinky Fetishes. Or just Bitch if you pre
Dec 13, 2013
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#17
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Vas'is listened closely. A shrine to her deity. And a mine. who knew if there was anything of worth to still be had for her experiments there. She did bristle slightly at the backhanded compliment but made no comment upon it. It was not directed at her alone, and she had to maintain face, for now. "Of course. The god's blessings shall be returned with the life of our enemies."

Sivas turned her attention to the priestess now. Two days south of here. If the yuan-ti were that active this close to their borders, had the front approached on them? Or were they mere infiltrators. Well, one way to find out she supposed.
 

Caulder

Is completely fucking irrelevant. And he's a bitch
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Nov 21, 2008
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#18
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ezra bows his head after the priestess speaks, placing both of his hands together as he does so. "As you wish, Priestess." he says, his gaze fixating on her from beneath his hood as he crosses his right leg over his left and allows his hands to drop to his side. the arms of his robe dropping down to hide his hands once more. "It is an honor to serve the Gods in such a manner."
 

SirOni

Demon Girls #1 Fan
Nov 11, 2008
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#19
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Ez'Raqs eyes narrowed and the corners of his mouth opening to reveal gritted teeth at the mention of the yuan-ti. He didn't care much for the desecration of some ancient temple but he shared in the hatred his race had for the vile snake people. Though it wasn't just disgust the young lizard was feeling. Mingled within it was a sense of curiosity and excitement. Ez'Raq had plenty of experience studying the various corpses that had found their way onto his workbench but he had barely any experience with a live yuan-ti thanks mostly to his own aversion to conflict.

"When do we leave?" Was all Ez'Raq asked, the annoyance in his tone gone and replaced with a hint of giddiness.
 

Dragontear

Grim Reaper
Oct 7, 2010
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#20
Re: Protectors of the Holy

Thus the venerable Priestess spoke about the mission at hand, clarifying whatever she may have spoken to him about earlier or voiced to herself or her priestesses, his sharp ears picking up on the topic regardless; he had a lingering suspicion that there had been a grievous offense inflicted upon the Temple, one way or the other. He listened as well as he could, remembering as much as he could, sure to find himself mulling everything over long after.

The notion of leaving this wonderful haven made Rhurjo inwardly hesitate, having become so... comfortable here, the mere mention of Yuan-Ti had his body bristling for the precious seconds he heard what that name, but he relaxed, instead watching the assorted individuals listen and learn, all displaying varied reactions, one much more fanatical than all the others, one more curious than anything else, another more offended? Perhaps.

Despite the Priestess assuring them that all the Gods would be most pleased, and such... encouragement, he felt so terribly hesitant to leave, and his muzzle opened up involuntarily to protest, butt he stopped as the loyal Lizardfork and Hydra... hybrid rose up enthusiastically, the Warrior amongst them already declaring little in the way of questioning to be had.

Fanatic.

Not speaking such an ill-thought out-loud, the big male merely lowered his head, breathing lightly to control that worm of worry in his heart, silently praying to the Goddess herself, merely settling for letting the others speak - they would want to know when to leave, as the annoyed-one just asked. He couldn't honestly think of anything to say; it was naturally honorable to serve the gods, not just Her, and to help the Temple required little further encouragement to aid this chosen group, however childish he felt for being so ill-enthusiastic in leaving 'home'. Then again, this is a good opportunity to strike down some Yuan-Ti...

Moving but a step and bowing low, he stood in a stoop by the Head Priestess' side, words caught in his throat, the question of when to leave had been asked, he wouldn't bother the Priestess until she answered the other male's inquiry. She'd already know what he wanted to know by his unsure demeanor and tilted skull; would he stay here, or accompany them?