The Price of Ambition

Jungle Madness

“Fae, your pack?” Alax asked, curious about the forgotten backpack.“Did you intend to leave it behind?” Fae nods “The pack only had necessary supply’s for Naevia, as she is with the ship its best left there, plus it will slow me down should a fight break out. Plus its really heavy.” Alax sighed in relief. “I see. I apologize for asking Ser Fae, I was uncertain.”

Alaric was however not so relieved. “Let’s get moving, people we don’t want to be on an uncharted world after night fall.” everyone could help but mutter their agreements at those wise words.“Agreed”, “Very true”, “Ah, yes. This is wise. Let us be off.”

Alaric began by powering up his axe cutting through the foliage. “This should clear us a nice path to find our way back to the drop ship.” However the sky did not wait long to release its deluge and soon the hissing mist and crackling of leaves against that ran.

“And now I wish I’d left my robe on.” ianus said, slightly foolishly, Alax looking up and nodding in agreement “I dislike this rain.” Her voice sounded rough through the rebreather." Only fae seemed preturbed a long floppy hat protecting her eyes from the rain.

“We can find shealter in the ruins let’s keep moving. Shall we”." Alax nodded, and continued to push towards the ruins, hoping for cover, “Like mold gone rampant.” she muttered.

Fae tried not to breath in the mist, that was slowly rising from the forest floor. Tying a bandana around her mouth and nose hoping it would provide some protection. It was the mold and ferns. Large fungi as well, with powerful spores that could alter the mind. When it rained all of it got mixed together and the mist became potent enough to effect the mind.

Oddly enough Fae managed to keep her wits about her, her bandana doing its job. Alax was not so lucky, begining too choke and coughing despite the rebreather, falling to her knees and clawing at her throat desperately. “H-h-hel…” She coughs out, then collapses. Picking Alax up gently. Fae Carries her piggy back style, quickly jogging for the ruins.

While in the mean time Ianus began screaming, not a manly battle cry, but a pitiful wail. “He’s found me! Emperor please no! He’s everywhere!” His hallucinations however were extream, his gun echoing across the forest as he fired at trees and allies alike.

“Alaric, disarm him before he alerts the whole damn forest to our location.” Fae held a hand over her mouth as she spoke, praying her unique nature would hold out against this strange mist. Alaric does what needs to be done, grappling Ianus to the ground. Taking his weapon forcibly out of his hands. While Ianus tries in vain to push Alaric off of him. “Get off me you bastard, can’t you see? He’s coming! He’ll take me again, I can’t let him! Damn you! Damn you!” Alaric sighed in evasperation “No one is coming it’s just a hallucination brought on by the fauna.” Ianus calms down a bit, his flailing stoping. He whispers to himself, out of fear and resignation, “He is coming though… don’t you see? He’ll always be coming.” Ianus takes more time to calm down…then groans, “Thank you Alaric, I’m alright now. You can release me.” Alaric grinned letting up his friend. “Good let’s get moving then, I don’t know how much longer my systems can withstand these chemicals.”

“Mphm. My head…” Alax groaned…fae however keeps running at speed. Keeping her eyes in front of her. “Are you okay?” Alax meanwhile held her head trying to massage some of the pain away. “I… I think so?” she eventually responded. “What happened Ser Fae Where are the others?” Fae coughed, tightening her bandana once more. “I think the mist is poisonous, yourself and Mr Ianus were both effected by it, I left Explorator Alaric to look after Ianus while I took you to cleaner air.” Fae says hoping effortlessly over a log and continueing her jog. “Ah. You have my thanks.” said Alax pausing, and cursing herself silently, she should have been more careful. “You my put me down now if you would like. I apologize for being a burden.” Fae stops letting her off slowly. Keeping her eyes on the treeline. Noticing a familiar form catching up.

“I’ve managed to calm him down for now, lets get out of this mist before they suffer a relasp.” Says Alaric with Ianus in tow behind him. “Are we near the ruins?” Alax mentions, her stance a little shaken but her eyes now clear. Pointing Fae drew her sword. They were not alone anymore.

The beast blended well with the surrounding fens. Covered in moss and fungi from an amphibian like hide that was rather smooth. Its forelimbs ended in suction cups containing rotating teeth. It had 3 sets of eyes to see in different spectrum’s of light. It rawred in challenge.

In Fae’s mind she flashed to the past, of teeth and daggers and blood. Her body dropped under the stress. Fainting and falling to the group in a limp pile. Meanwhile Ianus raises his hand to his scarf, “Everyone, look away!” he says pulling it up. His lidless eye staring towards the beast.The eldrich energys of his eye burning the beast, but also Alax the sheer power of the warp lighting her nerves on fire and frying her body with intense pain. She reals back stunned.

Pulling herself back into the realm of the living Fae spys the beast, this time seeing it for what it was. Just enother ugly monster. She charges it. Driving her sword deep into its back. Ianus unable to do anything else but begin reloading his pistol. Alax was also unable to help coughing up blood and pulling away from the combat. She couldn’t shoot into the melee in this state without risking hitting Fae. The beast had no such concerns lashing out at the ex-sororitas. However like liquid gold she dodged its flurry of swipes. Manuvering behind it. Alaric wretched his Axe down in a powerful overhead swing, cutting a huge chunk of its hide off to the ground but it wasnt enough. Fae continued her assult, but the monoblade probed too blunt to pierce the creatures hide.

The beast lashed out in the agony of Alarics blows, attacking both Fae and Alaric in a fury of blows. Fae continued to dodge with prenatural swiftness, Alaric had his own advantage, taking the blow to the chest he steped back slightly, the smell of blood and oils intermingling in the air around them.

Alaric struck back, dealing enother huge blow to the creature. Fae attempted once more to assist, however she couldnt even scatch it. Fae grunts in disgust. “This useless piece of…”

“This creature shouldn’t be able to survive a second glimpse! Everyone, look away!” Ianus yelled ripping his headscarf off. This time he harmed no allyes however the creature was not so lucky, smoke coming out of its skull and pink good running out of its ears. They all thought it was over untill it rose up once more, Alaric took care of that. Repeatedly slamming his heavy axe own on its back and neck. Untill eventually it stopped moving, and didn’t get up. “AND STAY DOWN!” Alaric yells out. "I"M A LORD OF FLESH FEAR ME ALL CREATURES!" his challenge echos into the forest, however other then the sound of birds taking to the skies nothing meets his rawr, Ianus however raises an eyebrow at Alaric.

With the creature fallen it was quickly covered in moss and fungi as it began to be broken down. Already small polyps were forming from the corpse for future creatures. The fens and forest seemed to be alive at the scent of blood and death. Spores floating into the air.

“Are each of you ok? Is it dead?” Alax says wanders back onto the scene, looking at the dead monster and holding her side, as if wounded, though there was no obvious wound. “We should have brought a flamer.” she whispers looking at the corpse one final time before turning away. “I’m taking a sample for my research. Maybe we can grow these to act as shock troops.” says Alaric examines the corpse, “No. Leave it Ser Alaric, no good will come of that xenos filth, please.” Alax responds with. “It’s an animal not a sapient xeno. It should not be a problem. Besides it’s my kill my prize.” Alaric says almost cruely scraping some of the pods into a sealed container, “We have a mission still….gather your samples then let us continue to the ruins” Fae says, retiring her bandana and coughing more.“Yes let us continue.” Alaric finally replies, capping the lid on his vial.

Even as they stood there talking that remains were being broken down as the parasitic nature of the planet was moving quickly to consume the remains. “I would recommend asking getting some heat and flame based weapons. That should help dispatch creatures like this.” Alaric said nodding wisly at his sage advice.

“Master, could you send a better weapon for me and a flamer or two, the local fauna is proving harder to deal with then we expected.” Fae said in complete agreement, this planet was not going to let them take its bounty unchallenged.

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TheHeavenlyLily

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