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Aereth

PP-F2 The Last Favour

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The sun had already set. Darkness had already completely consumed the first floor as the cloaked figure stepped through the forest, making his way towards a very familiar place. 

A place that was home of many happy memories, but today he wouldn't add another happy one. Today he was only here for one thing. The last Davie he would ever ask anybody for. A very important thing he could only entrust one person with. 

Quote

To: @Itzal

Meet me at our old training ground. There is something very important I need to tell you. 

And please come alone.

Looking one last time at the message, he pressed send and fetched three items from his inventory, carefully placing them in front of him. With one swift movement Aereth then sat on the ground cross legged, while his hands rested on his knees.

"I need a calm mind for the rest of this night. Otherwise..." He thought before stopping his train if thought. What would happen otherwise? 

He took a deep breath and dismissed the thought. He would succeed. Tonight was the night he would finally get everything he had been longing for for so long. He could almost taste it inside of his mouth...

The sweet taste of revenge.

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+2 SP slime farm

Itzal was in the middle of his training back at home in the slime farm when he received the message.  He parried the blows of the mobs he spawned, able to shape them to human form with weapons for more accurate training.  He sent a counter attack to one of them, tripped the other by dropping to the ground and swiping at their legs with his own, then used his AoE sword art to finish them off.  None of them died, but they were almost.  Good, he was getting better and holding back at the last minute.  With that in mind he finished off the slimes to end the session.  Then he opened his menu, glad he didn't have to clean sweaty clothes in a game, and his eyes widened when he saw who sent it.  Aereth???  He turned to Velnia who moaned sadly in the memory.  He opened the message and read it aloud to himself.  Why did he want to talk to him?  Why was he telling him to go alone?  Itzal had come to not trust Aereth after the stunts he's been pulling lately.  Well..  He was going alone, that was certain.  He could beat Aereth in a duel if he gave it his all.  However he wouldn't be going as Itzal..  Well not at first anyway.  He'd be going as Are.

Itzal arrived at the location and slipped out of the shadows.  Seeing Aereth for the first time.  He took a silent deep breath, then spoke using the American Accent.  "The scout was lucky I was with him today to ask him a few questions."  he said with his hand resting on the black blade.  Velnia was hiding in the trees so Aereth would not spot him.  Itzal, or Are he supposed, continued.  "Suffice it to say I insisted I approach first, until I've determined you don't have any deception played out.  Now speak, and make your words count."

@Aereth

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Aereth didn't move nor open his eyes as the hooded figure emerged from the shadows. He just waited for the man to finish his little speech. 

"The Scout..." he mentally noted, knowing that Itzal had pretty much vanished from the surface of Aincrad since their last meet and assuming that the Scout was being Itzal's alias. 

"Who are you? I told Itzal to come alone." he said. "But anyways, as you can see I'm completely alone, unarmored and with no weapon on me." he said, lifting his cloak to reveal his casual attire under the shine of the moonlight. "I do not intend to make any trouble, I'm just here to pass on a very important message, no. An opportunity that might be of high importance for... I don't know... him... Hestia... Maybe everybody in this virtual hell that gives half a f*ck about Aincrads safety..." 

"But certainly not for you my hooded friend. Because neither do I know you, nor am I stupid enough to trust a complete stranger." he said, opening his eyes and gazing into the darkness that was cast over the players face from his hood.

@Itzal

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Itzal was silent for a moment as he analyzed Aereth.  The surrounding area.  And looked into the eyes of his old apprentice to ensure he wasn't lying.  He took a good two minutes before he was at last convinced, and sighed.  He hated that he had to resort to something like this.  "While I wear this hood, I am Are,"  he said.  Still using his American accent.  Then he reached up to pull down his hood, the shadow vanishing as Itzal's face was revealed.  "And when I'm not, I'm Itzal...  Sorry about that, a lot of things have changed.  I'm more cautious than you realize."  Itzal gave a whistle and Velnia flew down, landing on his shoulder.  The dragon was no longer purple.  She had bigger and seemingly stronger scales that looked more like steel armor than anything.  Her eyes were no longer red, but instead were a silver.  She wasn't acting energetic and fee spirited like Aereth knew.  She sat straight, calm, with an analytical gaze.  Itzal stroked her back.  "It's alright if he knows Velnia, just remember what I said."  On hearing this, she did a one eighty and did a loop the loop through the air, though she stayed over there with Itzal.  He drew his sword and thrust the blade into the ground, resting his two hands on the pommel.  "Ok.  I'm here.  I know you wouldn't contact me after what happened unless it was extremely important.  I'm all ears."

@Aereth

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"Aaaah." He simply replied when Itzal finally revealed himself. Fake personas. Something Aereth himself had used in the last but he didn't suspect Itzal to be utilizing. Whatever... It didn't matter to him. 

"You are right. I wouldn't call you out here if it wasn't important." The brunette said while rising to his feet and taking in the new look his old mentor and dragon were having. 

"Pretty edgy if you ask me." He said tilting his head slightly. "But who am I to talk... So to business."

"Recently I got my hands on important information about the laughing coffin... I found them." His lips formed into an almost unnoticeable smile as he said this and a dark determination filled his eyes. 

"You need to gather Hestia and everybody you can find to form a raid group and attack them. This might be one of the first and best chances for all of Aincrad to be freed of the disease called Laughing Coffin."

"I placed a message with all information about their hideout at the your wife's shop. But before I can let you go I need you to do me a favor." The brunette told him before pointing to the items in front of him. 

"I want you to take these items. Take them and once you found somebody you deem worthy of them give them to that player. These are very powerful tools that in the wrong hands can create much destruction and pain." he paused. "But in the right hands, and I trust only you to find those, they might be able to help making Aincrad just that little bit safer."

 Glittering Snowflake obtained HERE
- Dimesional Shift+Delete

Spoiler
Item Name: Dimensional Shift
ID: 82772
Roll: Craft: 10 + 3 = 13, Battle: 10, Loot: 8 - Phase
Tier: 1
Type: Katana
Quality: Uncommon
Enhancements: 1 Phase, 2 Accuracy
Description: The narrow, slate grey blade, though solid in the middle, fades out in the directions that it tapers, becoming entirely invisible at the cutting edges. The grip is wrapped with tattered black cloth with a highly polished spherical onyx as the pommel. A symbol adorns the center of the cross guard shaped like a traditional flat-topped kite shield.

- Goldcrest MK. 2 

Spoiler

Name: Goldcrest MK.2
Your Profession: Tailor
Your Rank: 5
ID: 71788 
Roll: 9+1
Item Type: Light Armour
Quality: Perfect
Tier: 2
Enhancements: +1 MIT, +1EVA, +1 Flame Aura
Description: Blue and gold full-body armor with hood and cape. The cape can be removed and attached to the users desire. It is designed to withstand hard hits from enemies, but is also very light, which grants the wielder a high freedom of movement. Appraised by Pwn and Pawn

@Itzal

Edited by Aereth

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Itzal stood there trying to process all the information he was receiving.  Remaining expressionless as he received it.  He gave no response to Aereth mentioning how his outfit was edgy, not really caring how other people saw it.  When he mentioned the laughing coffin and how he found their hideout, his eyes narrowed.  Aereth's subtle smile did not go unnoticed to the scout of Aincrad...  And neither did the look in his eyes.  When he continued to speak Itzal wondered why Aereth didn't just lead them to-  The realization appeared in his mind first as a theory, then as an assured guess after he compiled the evidence in his mind.  It was only further confirmed when he pointed out his equipment on the ground. Itzal's eyes turned down to the equipment, then snapped back at Aereth.  And when he looked back at his apprentice, frustration, disappointment, and anger was all that was to be seen.  He shot forward, using the advantage of surprise to grab the man and slam him against the tree behind him.  Before he could react, Itzal pulled out twin pikes and pierced Aereth's arms to the tree.  He stabbed them a little past the elbow so Aereth couldn't just pull them off.  His health would drop, but only by two points every two seconds.  It wouldn't kill him, especially with battle healing.  "While you're stuck there how about you listen for a change?"  He said, frustration seeping from his voice.  "First of all:  I know you understand that ending violence through violence doesn't make anything better, it only makes it worse.  For your information I did as I had promised and found a prison that removes the ability to teleport out.  We can officially start imprisoning player killers Aereth!  You have no reason to continue this serial killer of justice mentality!"  

To say that Itzal was both pissed off while at the same time holding onto hope for his apprentice.  "I don't know if you even care about the lives of others anymore, but if you do then you'll stop this once and for all!  Secondly."  His eyes narrowed again.  "You're planning a suicide run aren't you?  That's why your giving me this equipment, giving me the coordinates.  Is that what this has come to?  You're willing to give up your skills, your life, to what?  You're hate?  Revenge?  We need fighters on the frontlines Aereth!  Have you become so self centered that you would rather let yourself die for revenge than help us get every last player out of Aincrad?!"  He shook his head, too frustrated to continue as he rubbed his forehead.  "...What happened to you?  What turned you into this?"

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Aereth saw Itzal move. He closed his eyes and relaxed his body. His old teacher pinned him to a nearby tree and restrained his movement with two pikes through his arms. 

"While this sounds like great news, I'm sorry to tell you that I really don't care anymore." Slowly his facial features started to change. "In my time inside here I learned one thing..." Gone was his strong mask of indifference, revealing the broken human behind it. "A person can only endure so much pain before they break... Felix... I'm tired. I'm f*cking tired of this life. Kayaba took my freedom, and the player who killed..." he paused, thoughts of Alice coursing through his head. "He took the reason I want to fight for freedom. I may not be strong enough to bring Kayaba to justice, but I most definitely know that I'm strong enough to rip that bastard who killed Alice into pieces. Everything beyond that: I don't care. And you want to know why? I'll tell you why but you won't understand, and I truly and deeply hope that you never will. Because once you love a person more than anything, once you love somehow for whom you would go to hell and back, once you found this person and this person is then killed out of pure arbitrariness... Then, and only then will you, my friend, understand what turned me into the person I am right now. Then you will understand the definition of true and utter desperation and pain."

Aereth didn't notice how he got louder with every word, to the point that he was practically screaming the last sentence out. 

"Now you have a choice to make Itzal. Either you imprison me right now, risking to loosing a big opportunity to rout out a Laughing Coffin hideout, or you leave me go. Then I will be able to bring justice to the person I hate more than anything else, as well as buying you time to gather a strike team and imprison as many of them as possible."

"But in the end I don't care. Do what you think is right. I am already dead. Only driven by my last burning desire, my last duty. So I at least beg you to take these items. Keep them, and give them to somebody worthy of carrying such strong tools so at least they can help to fight free the players."

@Itzal may choose between:

  • Letting Aereth go.
  • Imprisoning him.

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Itzal didn't move for at least a full minute after Aereth finished.  A shadow hung over his face.  After a long period of silence he walked over and raised his blade up into the air.  Turned it down into a position that would make it clear he was going to thrust it down towards Aereth.  Then the blade came down...  And spun in a circle as it descended, cutting the pikes in half, thus shattering the objects.  He then sheathed his sword.  The instant Aereth tried to say anything, Itzal punched him hard in the face, enough to knock him a good several feet away.  Itzal didn't look up, but Aereth would see two steady streams of tears sliding down his cheeks.  "...You idiot...  You better not tell me you didn't know how much I will miss you should you vanish..."  When he looked back up at Aereth anger and frustration was seen in his eyes, while the tears betrayed his pain and sorrow.  "I'm letting you go on one condition.  Do you understand Aereth?  One condition that you must follow and obey.  You go and say goodbye to every friend you've ever had in here.  Because whether you realize it or not?  Letting yourself die without giving them that last chance to see you before you go, is one of the worst things you can do.  So don't you dare leave them in that state.  DO YOU HEAR ME?!"  He took a deep breath and wiped away the tears.  "I hate this..  I hate seeing you like this but...  At least I get to see you one last time.."  

Itzal walked over to the other side and stood there, his back to Aereth.  "When you charge into battle, don't you dare focus on revenge.  In your final moments.  Remember all your friends, because you DO have friends."  Itzal turned to look at Aereth.  "I'm forbidding you to use Soul Barrage unless you use it with those memories in your mind Aereth.  Soul Barrage was not meant to be used out of hatred.  It was meant to be used out of love for your friends and family.  Make sure you don't tarnish it's use."

@Aereth

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Once you choose a path... You have to walk it to the bitter end. That was Aereth's philosophy ever since he picked up his first weapon. 

"Thank you Itzal. I'll miss you too.." he said as he got back up from the fist to his face. "Don't worry. I already visited everybody that I care for." Though he wasn't sure if they really saw him, he was sure that they knew he was there. "You were the last one... The most important one. You helped me at my weakest, and for that I'm more grateful than words can describe. Don't cry for me when I don't return. I assume you know that every day here was torture for me. I never planned to make it out of Aincrad alive. So understand why I welcome Death like an old friend. Staying alive would only make my suffering longer. Know that I finally get what I always wanted, to be re-united with my love in death. Just make sure you guys can capitalize on it. Take down that damn guild. This is the best opportunity we ever had."

After that he put a hand on his old mentors shoulder. "I promise you not to tarnish its use. I will overcome that last fight with my own strength. I swear it."

"Be strong Itzal. Be a burning beacon of Hope for others. Guide them and keep them save. Just promise me to do the only thing I never could. Always keep your hope."

@Itzal

Edited by Aereth

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Itzal grabbed Aereth and pulled him into a strong hug, tears running down his face.  "You idiot.  Of course I'm going to shed tears for you."  After that he said nothing as he cried with his friend, holding him in a friendly embrace for a while.  Eventually of course, the sobbing ceased and he was able to pull back, wiping the tears off of his face.  He nodded as he tried to calm himself down.  "Good.  You make sure you take as many of them down with you...  Ok?"  Upon his last words Itzal gave a shaky chuckle upon hearing his old title again.  "I don't know how well I can be a beacon of hope when I've gone all edge lord like this, heh...  I'll do my best I swear."  Now that he finally recovered from his sorrow, as it wasn't the right time for that.  He moved to a large boulder and sat down.  "Can..  Can we keep talking for a bit?  Before you go...  There's a lot I have to fill you in on, and I'd like some advice from an old friend if you're willing."

@Aereth

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