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Götterdämmerung [IC/PG-16/Not Accepting]

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Here in the Garden

Kitt made his way through the twists and turns, hacking away tree after tree that blocked his path. It was clear his mind was made up, his choice clear...at least he assumed it was. If this was the choice that had to be done to ensure the continuing of life and the removal of this facade's veil, then by the will of Taros as well as the will of Hinder, this would be done. Speaking of Hinder, Kitt didn't see Olivander anywhere at the present moment, but he could've swore he saw a shadowy figure leap into the brush and trees over head.

Taking the high road while I clear the low road...perhaps we're finally thinking as a singular unit now. Kitt smirked, swinging the blade a few more times as the trees continued to fall more and more before him. Soon the blade would return to the fiery light as it began to morph and change shape once again. "Now...Phantomsteel Reaper!" A war scythe appeared in his hand...and he was more than happy to use it to "weed" the garden before him...inching every so closely to the target.


“Come and get me,”
"You won't leave this clearing alive,"

Another tree fell, this time revealing the clearing to the forge Dog as Kitt walked forth with the war scythe in his hands. Sharp were his eyes, like a finely made dagger and within those sharp eyes were the fires that the forge's hearths would hold. "It's over, Joy...you can't run anymore...and you can't continue the facade you've draped upon this island and it's people." he said, slamming the blunt end of the scythe into the ground.

"One last chance to stop it..." Kitt said, compassion showing itself once more. "But heed this...if you throw this offer away...then the gods have mercy on your soul..." He looked at Olivander, a determination in his eyes. In this look, he showed Hinder's Dog that he was willing to do what he could not back on Galatea...to do what was necessary. One chance, one moment of reason being given...but if not, then a Watchdog would die in this clearing.

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Addicted to Bad Ideas

“Live life to the fullest. Treat every day as if it’s your last.” Isn’t that what Laeta teaches, Joy? That’s certainly your teaching. That’s certainly what you have been doing on this island, anyway. And, through you, it becomes hers. That’s going to be your legacy, you know, if you have any at all: hosting banal parties to ignore the inevitable. Even without me, there would still be tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that. Here’s another question, if you win this fight, what happens after that?

Tat҉ib͠us̨ means to weather the storm. When do you think the storm is going to end?

It had been a long time since Joy had heard that voice, but she did again now. Its questions were pervasive, but she tried to keep them out of her mind, instead focusing on the two emerging watchdogs, both reiterating their intent to kill her. Which one would be the one to do it? She tried to ask that question instead. She could guess at the answer, sure. It was probably- No, she had to stay focused. She touched her spear to her ring of light again and listened to its hum, desperately trying to mute the sound of her own mind. It didn’t work.

You’re going to die. Whether that’s today or sometime in the future means no difference to me. Deep down in your heart, you know that too. That’s why you devoted yourself to being of the gods, isn’t it? It’s especially why you attached yourself to Mor’s. You might have liked Nuumu’s girl, too. And when you came here, this became a higher cause too. These consequences are just the overlap of those two causes. How does it feel?

What did work, though, was how Joy’s spear reacted to her touch, drawing on the latent energy of the ring and extending forwards, aimed straight at Hinder’s dog. When it extended past him and touched one of the trees surrounding the clearing, she reversed it, retracting back on one end and extending on the other until she could bring it out in an overhead swing, a high arc aimed at bringing the new point of the spear down on Taros’ dog’s head. She was quicker with it than the size of the spear seemed to suggest, the weight, of course, being more emotional than physical.

Whatever Joy managed to hit was struck by her own sheer force of will. There were no words necessary. That was her response.


OOC

Spoiler

Subtitle is a World/Inferno Friendship Society song/album.

Some expository fluff for you to chew on even if your characters can't hear it. They're too busy trying to dodge out of the way, I'm sure. Definitely let me know what they're doing after that so I can give some Joy responses and help keep the combat moving. I may not always be able to respond right away but I'll definitely say something as soon as I can.

-r

 

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Metal Hawks

"...if you throw this offer away...then the gods have mercy on your soul..."

Olivander didn't have to see Kitt's face to know that he was sure of himself. He had already displayed his conviction, and Olivander trusted him. With that in mind, Olivander had zero intentions on taking his eyes off of Joy. She didn't give a verbal response to Kitt. Instead, she immediately fought back.

Things almost seemed to slow down as the ring of energy pulsated, expanding immediately toward him as Joy extended her spear. Having minimized his profile earlier, Olivander just barely reacted in time to dodge the attack, flopping onto his back as the heat from the ring left a burn on the left side of his face. The spear extended past him and reached all the way to the clearing behind him, shocking Olivander at its great reach. He immediately made himself intangible and rolled to his right, away from Kitt. Dagger still in hand, he kept low and got to a sprinting position.

If he could bring her down with his physical strength, he may be able to give Kitt an opportunity to kill her. However, at that close of a range, he would not be able to dodge her attacks if she struck at the right time. She need only look for him to break his intangibility. Olivander could only hope that Kitt was ready. If he was as well trained as Olivander believed, this fight may end soon.

He also had to remember that he was going to be almost directly under the ring she was controlling, and it was extremely hot. He would suffer. He could very well die. But, so would the people of Andalou if Joy was victorious. It was a risk he was willing to take.

The spear came arcing back behind him toward Kitt. As the tip of the spear approached Kitt, Olivander stared down Joy. He wasn't sure what else the ring was capable of, but he was sure of what he needed to do. When he was exactly one foot from her, he would break his intangibility and bring her to the ground. He barreled toward her with all of his might now, earth crumbling to dust beneath his feet. Even if he died today he would be okay with that, knowing he did what he thought was right for the people of Andalou, and possibly the world over.

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All Out of Mercy

It happened in a blur of light, though for Kitt, it seemed like time was moving slowly. Olivander had made it in, but he didn't make it to where he could stop the spear of light from coming down on him. If he wasn't 100% prepared for this, Kitt might've lost his head in more ways than one... It was a good thing he WAS prepared.

Kitt shifted his weight slightly and did his best to parry the spear of light with his war scythe, attempting to deflect it to the side perhaps...maybe even catch the spear between the smaller sickle blades and possibly remove the weapon from her. Whatever the result of this would become, Kitt only had his eyes narrow towards Joy. It was obvious that her assault here, that WAS her answer. It was completely out of Kitt's hands now, the mercy he wanted to show this Watchdog was knocked out of the outstretched hand by her. Whatever happened now was on her own hands, not his.

"Then gods have mercy on you..." he simply said, swinging the scythe slightly, before practically throwing it towards Joy. She would most likely be too busy to deal with the scythe to do much of anything else, he hoped. At this moment, Kitt unsheathed his own sword and brandished it before him. "...do know, I wished this wouldn't be the case and the path you chose."

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Fate of Fates

Joy wrestled with the Hinder watchdog both physically and mentally. The physical part was obvious; her ring of light assisted in grappling the much more imposing dog, growing brighter and brighter to inflict worse and worse damage. The mental part was in how her aura increased in intensity as well, desperately searching for something to latch onto. If she could get him to hesitate for just a single moment… The chicken? A party? Hinder himself? She wasn’t sure what the light would find for her, just that if she could get him to hesitate for just a moment, she could turn the tide of battle.

Somewhere, wherever he was, David put his coin on an altar and clapped his hands together.

Phantomsteel struck Joy in the shoulder opposite where Hinder’s dog had stabbed her, and she screamed in pain. Her ring responded to her cries, unraveling its grasp on Olive and glowing even brighter, until finally, when not even Joy could bear to look at it, it discharged, enveloping both the people inside it in a column of light.

You knew the consequences, didn’t you, Joy? Even when you cried out “Tat҉ib͠us̨!” for the first time? Is that why? And yet, you were happy. You had found a solution! And it worked! Everyone on the island had sacrificed so little for that joy, the only thing they needed now was to sacrifice a little more, and a little more.

You know that’s what you’re showing these watchdogs now, right? Now they know too: all these parties later, that was the last time you were ever truly happy. But what could you do? The path had already been prepared for you, and to stop it would be back to a problem you thought you could never solve. You would have to admit that you just were making it worse. 

She found herself teleported to the edge of the clearing, with Hinder’s dog landing a few feet away from her. Her injury from that wretched scythe only seemed to amplify the pain from Hinder’s blade, and it was all she could do to get her feet under her and stand back up and start stumbling away, back into the forest.

There was no light surrounding her -- no aura, no weapons, nothing.


OOC

Spoiler

Subtitle is a Fucked Up song

I refuse to elaborate on the feeling Olive might get if his coin is used, but he does get it. You can DM me for questions on this, or related to this, though I recognize there's a little ambiguity that's intentionally in there for the character to wrestle with.

Meanwhile, both Olive and Kitt get the vision/hear the voice here, Olive for wrestling with Joy and being within her teleport circle, and Kitt for having Phantomsteel pierce through her aura. I expect Joy to need a third hit to be killed because that's how boss fights in video games always seemed to work, but she's basically been overwhelmed now (and thus, you can write yourselves killing Joy if you want with no further input from me). Let me know if you want anything else, though.

-r

 

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Posted (edited)

Welcome Home

The damage had been done. As Olivander held tightly to Joy, the ring seared burns across his entire torso. The pain was agonizing, but even through wails of pain he wrestled with her. For a brief moment, Olivander found relief. He was sure he was going to die from his wounds, but the pain and agony stopped suddenly. A wave of calm washed over him and Hinder's words echoed in his mind.

"...I could tell you all the fluff, about how you’re my watchdog and I’ll support you no matter what. What you are asking of me, it’s been asked before. But I think just that, that you’re all feeling the same stuff, is pretty powerful on its own."

He found himself gripping Joy tighter, even as the ring kept him bound and burning. Finally, Olivander opened his eyes to see the look of frustration on her face. He grinned through it all. "It's over," he finally mustered. Then, Kitt struck. The Phantomsteel in her shoulder caused Joy to scream out. In response, her ring let go of Olivander. Then, he and Joy were both consumed in a blinding light.

He was hearing voices now, but they were not directed at him. They were directed at Joy. The voice criticized Joy, but made one thing clear to Olivander: she knew what she was doing was wrong. Olivander wanted to frown, but he was too weak to move anymore. The light faded, and for a moment, Olivander was completely disoriented. He felt the ground rushing beneath him until he suddenly landed in grass again.

He involuntarily lost his grip on Joy, and she barely climbed to her feet. He tried to raise a hand to catch the hem of her clothes, but she shambled away. He could not follow her. Olivander did notice that Joy's light had faded. The ring was gone. Her weapons were gone. She was alone now. She was just Joy. As his vision began to blur and Olivander began to black out, he could only whisper for his comrade.

"Kitt--"

Olivander's head landed in the grass, his eyes closed as his injuries sapped his strength.

Spoiler

Title is a Coheed and Cambria song.

 

Edited by Comrade Duck

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The Kill

Phantomsteel hit the target as intended, but at the same time, Kitt watched as Olivander was burned by the ring of light that Joy had, but at the same time, it did release the Hinder Watchdog, but the light began to envelop the two of those Dogs. Try as he might, Kitt wanted to move to take action, but he paused in his momentum...as he heard something...practically at the moment Phantomsteel struck Joy's aura.

You knew the consequences, didn’t you, Joy? Even when you cried out “Tat҉ib͠us̨!” for the first time? Is that why? And yet, you were happy. You had found a solution! And it worked! Everyone on the island had sacrificed so little for that joy, the only thing they needed now was to sacrifice a little more, and a little more. You know that’s what you’re showing these watchdogs now, right? Now they know too: all these parties later, that was the last time you were ever truly happy. But what could you do? The path had already been prepared for you, and to stop it would be back to a problem you thought you could never solve. You would have to admit that you just were making it worse.

W-Who...who's voice is that? Kitt thought, holding his head slightly being a bit disoriented by the light and the sudden voice plaguing his ears. But after it all, it was spoken out there...plain and simple: Joy knew what she was doing was wrong, she knew the consequences, just like Flynt in this regard. He almost felt sorry for her, just as he did for Flynt, but the moment subsided as he watched the light die. Joy was at the edge of the clearing, Olivander thrown quite a bit away...he was in pretty bad shape. "Olive!"

The Forge Dog rushed towards his friend's side...yes...friend. Kitt had to admit it, this was definitely a feeling he had...friendship, camaraderie...and it took this long for him to develop this for Olivander. Then again, they had been through a whole hell of a lot, so Kitt found it only natural. Nevertheless, the burn marks were bad...and Olivander found himself blacking out.

"Kitt--"

"Rest now, Olive..." Kitt simply responded, trying to dig into his pockets for something. "...it isn't his coin...but..." He finally produced from his pocket a single silver coin, slowly placing it in Olivander's hand and closing it. "Hinder, take this...and the information I presented to your Dog as tribute...do not let this one die today."

A short prayer given, Kitt turned his head, seeing Joy trying to make her way back into the forest...but she was alone. There was no light...no weapons...she was now truly alone. Not even her patron deity had deemed her unworthy, least in his eyes. Kitt began to slowly get up from kneeling beside Olivander, beginning to approach Joy. Each step he took, seemed to resonate with his own heartbeat, the world seeming to slow down in the process. This was the moment he prepared himself for...the deed had to be done. Each step closer, Kitt felt the sword in his hand grow heavier and heavier.

"A weapon does not seek bloodshed. Those who wield them seek it, and thusly they simply become a tool of war and death. A weapon is used to protect those dear to you...when you have no other option. To instruct the next generation of practices and traditions of old...and a weapon such as this, needs to dedicated and blessed by the Great Forge Maker. Those who toil within the forge work for long varying periods of time to create a weapon that Taros himself would be proud of....if you tainted it with a thirst for blood, then the work of it's creator would've been thrown away."

These words that he himself spoke to Emily back on Galatea began to ring in his ears. He glanced at the blade he held in his hand. This...this was the blade he forged in Taros' Great Forge at his Shrine. Tradition being in the Forgekeepers, what weapon you create...you dedicate it to Taros and leave it there as the offering. That was what offered to Taros before he left on his journey as a Watchdog...but in a strange twist of fate, Taros accepted the offering but returned the sword to Kitt. And now...now it would be truly tainted... Was...he still afraid of doing this?

"The sword can be used...but yet again, it's only job is to obey the will of it's wielder. It's creator forges it...his will put into the blade. He gifts it to another, the wielder, who's simply commanding the weapon to their whim and will."

Kitt began to grit his teeth, his grip tightening on the hilt of his blade. He now was basically in front of the woman, blocking her path forward. He was silent, his teeth gritting and grinding as he held the blade, it almost quivering in his hand. "A weapon...does not seek bloodshed. They become a tool of war and death if they do..." he finally spoke, his voice obviously shaking. "Weapons are used to protect those dear to one...when no other option is available...but you..." Kitt looked up, his eyes showing that of a strong but sorrowful compassion, though there was a heavy hint of rage behind them too. "You used the tools you were given to harm others...you hurt my friend...and for that...this blade won't be tarnished and tainted with a thirst for blood...rather, it's being given a taste of wrathful, just vengeance! So say I...Kitt Axton, the wielder and creator of this sword...I will it, and my blade follows my will!!" The blade no longer felt heavy in his hand, as he began to lift it up. "Begone...and never taint another weapon with your bloodlust!" Kitt shouted, bringing the sword down...the sounds of the blade cutting through the air.

Joy fell to the ground in silence...and immediately after, Kitt dropped to his knees, gasping for air almost...before letting out a loud, sorrowful wail as tears fell from his face. The deed was done...and now, the trembling Watchdog remained there, wailing.

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The Line of Fate

Dream sweet dreams, dear watchdogs, even after all you have done. Even though Joy is dead. Do not worry about where you will be when you wake. I can be benevolent when I choose to be. 

If you ask the gods where you're needed, they will direct you west. To me. Joy told you the same thing, didn’t she? And I so would like to meet you. You bear the word ca͢n̷t҉icųm̕ad ͝ ̷ , after all. But if I were you, I would be inclined to stay away. Go somewhere else. Spread your teachings. Try to save people from me, for all that will matter in the end.

Or maybe you want to meet me as well? It’s not every day that one gets to meet the little voice in the back of their mind. If you do come sailing my way on that ship of yours, I want it to be for that reason, or any other reason you might have in mind. I don’t want it to be from the gods. I only want to see you when you are ready.

Your story is not over just yet.


Procession to Apocalypse

“Oh good, you’re alive,” Captain Helmsley said. He was more surprised by one of them than the other. “And awake too -- that’s two good things.”

The watchdogs hadn’t so much come back as they had appeared back on the Swallow Tail. Whatever trouble they had gotten into, it had left them both beaten and unconscious, and the ship’s doctor Eirika had descended upon them without even needing the order. Only when she had sufficiently tended to their wounds did she disappear back to her cabin, leaving the Captain alone with them.

Alone? No, the chicken Olive had brought on board was inconsolable except when roosting on top of the dog. One crewmate had even gone to see Eirika themselves thanks to some well-aimed pecks with its surprisingly sharp beak. Still, once acknowledged, it was practically silent, so it was easy to forget about.

The two had waited for a decent amount of time. Helmsley had made a point not to keep track. Keeping track would only worry him, and he preferred to keep his trust in Eirika than try and second-guess it. At one point, a deckhand had come in asking if he would prefer to join everyone for lunch, but he waved them away.

But they were awake now, one stirring and then the other, and Helmsley smiled and leaned forward in his chair to greet them. “You’ve certainly caused quite a ruckus, you know. I’ve only heard bits and pieces from here on the ship, but I think I can put together what happened.” He kept his voice level, indicating a lack of judgment on the matter. How could he? “I assume tonight’s party will be a funeral, then,” he said.

Then he sighed. “In any case, Eirika said you should be ship-shape if a little sore. Miracle worker that one, though maybe you’ve had a few other miracles yourselves?” Another even tone; he didn’t expect it to be answered. That changed, though, as he started asking for responses. “There’s probably still food around, you only need to ask. Do as you will besides, just let me know when you’re ready to leave.”


OOC

Spoiler
Spoiler

Subtitles are songs by Anunnaki

The first section basically said everything I was going to say here, but I'll say it again outside the narrative too. You know in video games how you're going up to the final dungeon/boss and the game is like "If you go past this point, you won't be able to return?" This is that point. Have your dream sequence if you want one, discuss what just happened and congratulate/commiserate, even leave the Swallow Tail if that's what you decide (and of course I'll go with whatever), but the option is on the table now. As soon as you tell Helmsley "West!" we start moving into the finale.

-r

 

Edited by radio414

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Amongst Thieves; Pt 2

Olivander watched as Hinder snatched his heart out of his chest. He could hear his own heart beating, throbbing in the grasp of the god's golden fingers.

"You did it, boy-o. You finally lost it all," Hinder said softly, the locs in his head swinging side to side on his shadowed face. "When I gave you my blessing, I knew you were reckless. This doesn't come as a surprise," Hinder said with a chuckle. "But, boy-o, I'm pleased. Proud even. Few thieves would give their last for people they don't rightly know."

Olivander stared back at Hinder, managing a weak smile. Blood dripped from the corner of his mouth. Pain rattled his chest. A deep burning in his flesh made him itch. But he remained still, only able to smile.

"It's not in our nature. We're thieves after all. We take. But you're... something else. You took from the powerful. You preyed on the oppressor. You sought to give back to the weak. It's damn conundrum to think about. But you did, boy-o. You lost it all. And that means I can't have you go losing anything else."

Hinder gently strummed a finger against Olivander's heart. It throbbed once more and pain shot through his very core. Then, he watched as his heart changed from red to gold. Hinder pushed Olivander's heart back into his chest and took a step back from the Watchdog. Olivander felt the pain leaving his body. His aches were soothed. The burning sensation ceased. His blood pumped once more. He felt whole again.

"But your story isn't finished yet. There's more to be written. And more treasures for the taking. So wake up, boy-o. Gold is callin'!"


Sail

Olivander blinked slowly at first, as a beak gently nudged his chin. A gentle but relieved cluck caused him to wipe his eyes and sit up. He stroked Sir William's feathers gently as he smiled. "Good to see you, mate," he said as the chicken pressed its head against his chest.

“Oh good, you’re alive,” spoke Captain Helmsley.

Olivander only just then realized he was aboard the Swallow Tail. Beside him were Captain Helmsley and Kitt. This led him to draw a very sudden conclusion: Kitt had won the battle. Olivander smiled, but he would address Kitt later in private.

"Good to see you again too, Captain," Olivander answered.

“You’ve certainly caused quite a ruckus, you know. I’ve only heard bits and pieces from here on the ship, but I think I can put together what happened.” Captain Helmsley's voice was free of judgment and questions. Olivander could only nod in response. “I assume tonight’s party will be a funeral, then,” Helmsley said clearly.

Olivander looked to Kitt, then back to Helmsley without saying another word. They had just killed another Watchdog.

“In any case, Eirika said you should be ship-shape if a little sore. Miracle worker that one, though maybe you’ve had a few other miracles yourselves?” Captain Helmsley mentioned.

This made Olivander quickly examine himself. Sure enough, his wounds had been healed to a drastic extent. It was unprecedented! "How did-- I thought I was done for! I'd already accepted it!"

Glossing over the question entirely from Olivander, it seemed that Helmsley wasn't surprised at Eirika's work. He'd probably seen recovery's of this quality from Eirika before.

"There’s probably still food around, you only need to ask. Do as you will besides, just let me know when you’re ready to leave.”

The mere mention of food made Olivander's stomach growl. He looked to Sir William and stroked his feathers again. "Well," he started. Sir William cooed in Olivander's lap. "I am feeling a bit... peckish."

Sir William stared daggers at Olivander and immediately fluttered out of his lap. "Buckaw!" he huffed, before skittering away.

Olivander simply shrugged and stood to his feet. "I wonder if there's any cake. Join me for a mess when you're ready, eh Kitt?" Olivander said without looking over his shoulder. He didn't want to turn around while he headed for a meal. He was too busy smiling. He was proud of Kitt. And just a little proud of that terrible joke.

 

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Forged in Fire

BGM

Walking…walking…walking further. This wasteland of discarded weapons, untouched by human hands and in pristine condition. In the distance, the sounds of a hammer hitting metal could be heard…even further still, Kitt could see an imposing figure with the hammer, hitting metal.

The closer he got, the louder the sound of metal being struck got. Eventually, Kitt reached the feet of this imposing figure, before dropping to his knees. His face was streaming with tears, his eyes red from the amount of crying. He tried to speak up, but nothing would come out…but at the moment, he didn't need to speak.

"When I made you, my son…I thought before to keep the feelings of mortal emotion away from you…to keep you pure and perfect…my greatest work. It is now, I realize, that would've been a foolish mistake." the voice said in a low, gravelly tone. "In truth, although I speak for only myself, I found the mortals in our world the most interesting. Their will, their determination…the insatiable thirst and hunger to survive, to grow…to even taste the blood of defeat only to crave that taste on the winning side. Truly remarkable creatures…"

Kitt watched the figure slam his hammer down on the metal once more, hearing him continue.

"But, the compassion shown…through mortal friends and family, it dawned on me that this…this is the true weapon that mortals wield. And if it's a weapon that they wield and it being that powerful…then naturally, I, the God of the Forge, need a weapon like that in my collection." the figure turned his head, showing his fiery red eyes as he smirked. "Tis only fitting that my greatest creation has this weapon at his disposal, no?"

The young man finally spoke up, tears still trying to fall but all being used up. "Taros…I tainted the weapon you ga-..."

"You didn't. It was justified, a kill of judgment in my name." Taros replied almost instantly. The being turned around and held out a weapon towards Kitt. Lo and behold, it was Kitt's own sword. It shone with great brilliance, glittering within this realms light and even showing some red that had been infused beautifully within its blade. "No, you did not taint this sword with bloodshed, but rather…you, as it's creator, used it as the tool to enact my judgment. My son, stand and take your sword. You aren't done. There will be others who will do as she had done…who will lose their way. Raise your head and sword against them." As Kitt took his sword in hand, he felt Taros' hands now on his shoulders. "My son…I'm more proud of you than you'll realize. Now go, awake…and remember, my forge and its weapons are at your disposal, always."


Baptized in Fire

“Oh good, you’re alive. And awake too -- that’s two good things.”

This wasn't where they were last...this wasn't that clearing...no, they were back at the Swallow Tail. But how? When?

“You’ve certainly caused quite a ruckus, you know. I’ve only heard bits and pieces from here on the ship, but I think I can put together what happened.”

It came back to Kitt now...everything that went down. For him, the world seemed to deafen around him, it being reduced to muffles at the moment as the young Watchdog slowly looked to his hands. They were still trembling slightly. He clenched them tightly and let out a long, slow exhale. It was sharp, but it was needed.

"I wonder if there's any cake. Join me for a mess when you're ready, eh Kitt?"

"H-Huh? Oh...r-right..." Kitt said, watching Olivander walking off already. The young man looked over to the scabbard that held his sword, which found itself propped up against the wall. Slowly he shifted himself out and up to grab a hold of it. It was this moment that Kitt began to slowly unsheath the weapon, though he hardly believed his eyes at first. The blade seemed just like how Taros had handed it to him in his dream, it was pristine and had no signs of bloodstains. It finally dawned on him what the red truly symbolized...to which Kitt sighed and sheathed the sword.

"My son…I'm more proud of you than you'll realize."

These words echoed in his mind for a while, as Kitt shook his head and sighed once more. This feeling of taking another's life, in the pursuit of righting these wrongs presented before them, it was going to need some time to get used to. Nevertheless, he took the sheathed weapon and proceeded to follow after his...his friend. They did have a lot to talk about now, with the imminent threat out of the way.

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Breaking the Silence

Olivander couldn't help but drool over the size and appearance of a rather decadent chocolate cake. He snatched up a plate and took a carving knife with which he used to remove a single slice of cake. With utensils provided, Olivander took his first bite of the beautiful chocolate cake slice. His heart fluttered. Ecstasy began building in his blood... and his pants.

He had become overjoyed with this cake so much that he needed to physically brace himself in a chair. "This cake... perhaps it came from the table of the gods?" he asked to no one in particular, aloud. His eyes briefly caught a glimpse of Kitt and he waved his comrade down. "Get some cake. We deserve to celebrate a little," Olivander said as Kitt approached. He pulled up a chair beside him for Kitt to take at his leisure.

"I'm sure there's a lot running through your head right now," Olivander said as he took another bite of cake. "We've been through a lot together, Kitt. You can safely express yourself to me."

Olivander recalled the first time he took a life. It wasn't easy. He still remembered the smell. He remembered the look in their eyes.

"What happened to you was traumatic. Believe me, I know. But you did the right thing, Kitt," Olivander tried to assure him. "You saved my life in the process. Well, you and that miracle doctor. I mean, look at me! No more burns! Can you believe it!?" Olivander asked excitedly. "My point is, I know that line wasn't easy to cross, mate. And I want to support you if you need me."

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The Other Side

"Get some cake. We deserve to celebrate a little."

Kitt had to admit...the size and appearance of the cake was impressive, more so than he had ever seen in his life. Nevertheless, unlike his compatriot, he kept the drooling to an internal one. And...unlike his compatriot...he took two nice hefty chunks of the cake and took it, once Olivander waved him down after seeing him. Honestly, he didn't want to seem like a glutton, but with the ordeal he went through...he figured no one would mind or care at this point.

"I'm sure there's a lot running through your head right now. We've been through a lot together, Kitt. You can safely express yourself to me. What happened to you was traumatic. Believe me, I know."

The young Dog sat down, placing the plate down in front of him. That was the best point Kitt could've heard for this moment. Olivander had been around and had taken many lives during his tenure as a Watchdog and possibly even before. The only life he saw him take was Simon's on Galatea, but the Watchdog of the deity of Wealth, it was only natural that he would be used to cut-throat methods on how to get what he wanted.

He was primed to speak, but Olivander cut him off before he did so.

"But you did the right thing, Kitt. You saved my life in the process. Well, you and that miracle doctor. I mean, look at me! No more burns! Can you believe it!? My point is, I know that line wasn't easy to cross, mate. And I want to support you if you need me."

Kitt glanced at Hinder's Dog before sighing heavily, finally moving and shoveling a sizeable piece of cake into his mouth for a moment. After savoring the delectability of this dessert, Kitt's shoulders went from their stiffened position to a more slouched mode. He let out another sigh, shaking his head. "I was...content to show you my resolve at first...I suppose some call it bravado. I was ready to show you I wasn't the simple forge whelp I was back on Galatea when I couldn't stop you from ending Simon's life. The helpless one who simply watched in horror as that man's blood filled the square that day..." he let out a light chuckle. "...I was ready...and yet, in the moment, my body trembled. I was afraid...afraid of what would happen to me. Afraid I would taint the weapon Taros returned to me with this dark thirst for bloodshed...afraid that if I went across this line...I'd never want to stop."

Another bite, another sigh.

"Olive, be honest with me..." he asked, looking at the thieving Watchdog. "...how do you do it? How does it come so natural to you, the ending of one's life... How does the smell, the sight, the look the unfortunate soul has in their eyes...how do you do it? And...how do you know when to draw the line? To know when to stop and not to go on a rampage with the bloodlust?"

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The Code

"I was...content to show you my resolve at first...I suppose some call it bravado. I was ready to show you I wasn't the simple forge whelp I was back on Galatea when I couldn't stop you from ending Simon's life. The helpless one who simply watched in horror as that man's blood filled the square that day..."

Olivander's mind briefly drifted back to Galatea. He remembered Kitt's expression that day.

"...I was ready...and yet, in the moment, my body trembled. I was afraid...afraid of what would happen to me. Afraid I would taint the weapon Taros returned to me with this dark thirst for bloodshed...afraid that if I went across this line...I'd never want to stop."

Olivander remained silent. He used to think that way too.

"Olive, be honest with me... how do you do it? How does it come so natural to you, the ending of one's life... How does the smell, the sight, the look the unfortunate soul has in their eyes...how do you do it? And...how do you know when to draw the line? To know when to stop and not to go on a rampage with the bloodlust?"

Olivander didn't shy away from the question. He shoveled the past piece of his cake into his mouth and wiped his lips with his sleeves like the uncivilized street rat that he really was. "For me Kitt, I've developed a code. One that serves myself and my god," Olivander began.

"You see, Kitt, these things require nuance. They require a willingness to draw an even deeper line inside themselves. I have rules. Even when it comes to taking someone's life. For example, you'd be hard pressed to find me bringing harm to women or children except under extreme circumstances. One of such you're now familiar with: those blessed or cursed with power and who mean to use it to bring harm to others. I have rules. No torture. Needless suffering is cruel. That's not who I want to be. And, if resolution can be found without taking a life, I'll take that avenue first. What you're looking for is direction," Olivander explained.

"Kitt, you have to find purpose in what you're doing. Find purpose in every action, even taking a life. If you can prevent meaningless death, destruction, and ruin and save innocent people, that is the cost. You pay for it by getting your hands dirty so others don't have to. I don't kill indiscriminately. I don't kill just to kill. I kill those who mean to leave disaster in their wake. To keep myself from going mad, I remember that I'm not killing for myself, but for the people I wish to protect. Like the people of this island. Like the people of so many others. As you mentioned, Galatea.

I saw that Simon was prepared to leave the deaths of hundreds at his feet. By taking his last breath, countless people were saved. But there's one more thing I must also keep in mind, and it's the hardest truth that I must remind myself of," Olivander said as he sat back in his chair.

"I'm not a good man, Kitt. And that allows me to think clearly."

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