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Forum Bug

Wed Dec 28, 2016 3:18 am by Sentinel

Hi all,

We're aware of a peculiar forum glitch that's causing some subforums to be locked.

Due to the lateness at this time, it might be a while before the glitch can be remedied, because despite my best efforts and as far as I can tell, everything seems to be working fine admin-side. It may have …

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Discord News/Update Test

Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:35 am by Sentinel

Just a news, update test. Trying to get this thing to work.

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Merry Christmas/Happy Hanukkah/Other religious holidays!

Fri Dec 02, 2016 5:56 pm by Sentinel

*wipes sweat from brow* Whew, political correctness is a lot of hard work. But it has to be done.

ANYWAYS, we did it - we (almost) survived 2016 which, I think we can all agree, was pretty damn terrible in many ways.

Regardless, it was a good year on the forums - we've met some new faces, set out …

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[FINISHED]Infinity's Row 2: Parasite

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[FINISHED]Infinity's Row 2: Parasite

Post by Sentinel on Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:26 pm

Hey guys Smile Been experiencing a bit of writer's block with Syndicate, so I decided that in order to get my creative juices flowing again, I'd write from a new character's point of view - one that I'll be playing as in Infinity's Row 2.

Along with my 4-5 characters that will be dealing with their own arc, over in the western parts Delilah Fa'alwind, daughter of Lord Perseon and Lady Ferrera, will also be facing adversity. Who might that be?

Spoiler:
not telling!  Razz

Regardless, I thought it would be an excellent idea to introduce the heiress now, and get the ball rolling on her story a little early. This will take place in 721 AW, when Delilah is 20 and studying in Bul Irsa. So, without further ado...




Bul Irsa Library, N'al Ren
20 years after the end of the Second Clan Wars


~Delilah~

"Biology is so stupid," I muttered, face crammed into yet another scientific journal. Two years into college, yet I still found it hopelessly difficult to study. It was almost the end of my second semester and my general biology professor tasked us with researching a plant or an animal and writing a paper on the creature. I'd probably have killed myself if I got stuck with grass or trees, so I opted for the only "animal" option that wasn't chosen by another student - the wasp.

This is pointless, I thought to myself. I inherited my mother's title two years ago, yet she still makes me go to college. Why? She never did, and neither did dad.

"Go to" isn't technically correct. I was connected through the Parivion school system, as many affluent kids were. I was an online student at Central Parivion University, which is supposed to be state-of-the-art. Sadly, Professor Kell was not. At least I picked up material in the lectures quickly...

Part of my essay required me to write about predatory/defense mechanisms. I already knew that wasps could sting multiple times and had venom different from bees, but stupid Dr. Kell wanted us to cite sources. For everything.

"WADE?" I whispered. WADE (or Water-proof Automated Destruction and everyday assistance Equipment) was my personal assistant - a hovering orb of steel, outfitted with two antennae on the bottom and a touchscreen on the front. Ever since Lendohar Industries started commercializing these things, the personal magitek assistant market exploded, causing these AIs to be surprisingly available to many. Easily customizable (I've seen several "picami" variations in Swynborough and Ald Ruhn), deeply loyal, and extremely helpful.

My assistant floated into sight from around a shelf. "Hello, Master Delilah! Seeking more help for your paper?" His voice slightly reverberated from inside his shell, and the text also appeared on the screen - in case your sense of hearing was otherwise engaged.

"I need a book that describes the attack and defense tactics of wasps," I requested. As I spoke, my words appeared on the screen - when I finished, they instantly blinked away, and WADE hovered up and down.

"All right, let me connect to the database here... okay, I got some matches!"

"How many?"

"649."

"Holy shit," I muttered.

"Indeed. Would you like me to select one from random?" WADE inquired.

Normally, I would have been lazy and said "Yes." But at this point, I wanted to leave my desk for a bit. "Nah, I'll go take a look. Which floor and aisles?"

"They're all located on Floor 2, Aisle 43. Pretty convenient if you ask me!" WADE declared cheerfully, spinning once in a circle.

"Yeah, sure," I muttered. "All right, let's go then." With that, I rose to my feet and headed upstairs, WADE in tow.

*  *  *

Floor two was more vast than the ground floor - if that was at all possible, since a large glass balcony overlooked the lobby area. Maybe it looked so big because the ceiling was twice as high... About 200 rows of shelves stretched from the three walls, and two walkways divided the floor in thirds. Vibrant lights rested in glass chandeliers, casting a soothing yet stimulating glow across the room. It was a nice place to just stop and think, letting the sense of hundreds - perhaps thousands - of years of knowledge overwhelm you.

But such a sense was interrupted for me when I felt the tiny hairs on the back of my neck prickle. Someone... was watching me? I whipped around, black hair tangling in WADE's antennae, and watched a figure dart into a door - a door that disappeared as soon as I blinked.

"Who was that?" I asked WADE.

"Perhaps an intruder. Would you like me to kill her?" An arc of lightning jumped from his antennae, singeing my hairs.

Oh, did I forget to mention? WADE was ex-military, straight from Lendohar. A number of infantry members complained that his cheerful disposition resembled that of a psychopath, and he was discharged after only a year. I'd concur with their sentiments, but I still found him incredibly adorable. Not to mention he was really good at finding things. Despite his robo-PTSD, he was harmless. Mostly.

I pulled my now-burnt locks of hair from my assistant. "Not necessary, as usual. Whoever it was, she's gone now."

"Very well," WADE replied, turning the electric current off. The two of us pressed on, eventually reaching Row 243.

"Hmm..." I thought to myself, perusing the books in search of one that piqued my interest. "WADE, how many of these rows do you think could exist in the world?"

"A curious question, Master Delilah. Number of rows... perhaps a thousand. Perhaps a billion. Maybe they stretch into infinity." WADE brought up a string of numbers - as far as I knew, there weren't many actual libraries in Lendohar, and aside from this one, my assistant visited only a few in N'al Ren, so it was typical that his estimates were all over the place. The numbers on the screen eventually materialized into one giant "?", which blinked a few times before fading away.

I scoffed. "Well, we're one less than infinity now..." I, of course, was referring to the former Runite's Row, which was disbanded when I was still a baby. My mother still had some... choice words about the decision.

Anyways, WADE didn't seem to register my passing comment, instead examining the shelf behind us, and so too did my attention turn back to the shelf in front of me. Absentmindedly, I grazed my hand along the spines of the books, feeling each embroidered letter beneath my touch.

One of them stung me.

I withdrew my hand sharply, looking left and right. WADE was still on the other side of the aisle, unfazed. Returning to the books, I grazed my hand along the books. Another sting - but this time I found the culprit. It was charcoal-black, with a sickly green font: "On The Plagues of N'al Ren, Bacterial and Otherwise".

Gingerly, I withdrew the book from its place. The spine still stung me, but I could hold the front and back cover with no problem. No author was listed - from the condition, it appeared that it predated the original Clan Wars, yet appeared as if I was the first one in existence to touch it.

WADE must have noticed my selection. "Found a book, my friend?" He floated over to my side, peering over my shoulder.

"I think so..." I trailed off, opening the cover. The first page was blank; not too surprising, since a lot of books did that, even modern ones. It was the next page that sent a chill down my back.

If you've opened this book, then I fear it is too late for you. I am sorry.

"Master Del-"

A deep maroon filled my vision, as angry buzzes cut off my only friend.

*  *  *

The first thing I felt was the pain. It was as if something was burrowing into my chest cavity - no, maybe beyond that.

The buzzing continued, eventually reverberating throughout my entire body. The maroon still filled my vision, but a dark, spindly figure stood out on the backdrop. It staggered - "Oh, shit, no, it's flying?!" - closer, and in the dim light, its features were finally revealed.

A wasp. A huge one, too, about the size of an adult man. Its wings flapped like an eagle, and as its mandibles began moving, I slowly realized what I was facing.

"Ah... I haven't seen a human in so long... Do you know who I am?" Her voice hissed and clicked, chilling the air around us.

"Um..." I thought about it. "No."

"...oh. Well, I did just say 'I haven't seen a human in so long,' so I should have answered that for myself."

I blinked. "...okay."

"My true name is Sfika. But you humans... you may refer to me as the Wasp Jun." Sfika brandished her stinger, sending little droplets of venom everywhere.

I gulped. Awesome. Jumping from a science project to facing an ancient malevolent entity. Thanks a f***in' lot, Dr. Kell. This is all your fault.

"Okay... so what are you going to do?" I asked, quite stupidly.

"You have opened my prison and freed me. For that, I will designate you as my host."

"Oh... um... thank you?"

Sfika clicked her mandibles, sounding rather excited. "Finally. A human that can appreciate demonic power. There will come a time when you require my assistance, Delilah Fa'alwind. But that time is not now - instead, I will allow you to prepare yourself for what is to come..."

"Wait a second," I started. "How do you know my name? What do you mean by 'require your assistance?'"

But Sfika ignored me - instead, she charged straight for my abdomen, stinger first. In a haze of black energy, the Wasp Jun's essence was absorbed into my body, and for the second time that day I blacked out.

*  *  *

"-ilah, are you okay?!" Two steel tendrils sprang from WADE, catching my shoulders and preventing my fall. I stumbled to my feet, where my assistant let me go.

"Um..." I rubbed my forehead - both my head and my stomach were aching madly. Clearly, not much time passed between the beginning and end of my exchange with the Jun. "No... I don't think so. WADE, we need to get back to Fa'alwind right now."

"But what about the essay?" He asked, motioning downstairs.

I shook my head. "Dr. Kell can go shove it as of now. WADE, I just... I just became a Jun host. And I have a feeling... that something bad is coming in the future."

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