Fa'Diel - Forestial Path
Wispy trees, ragged but alive, enclose both sides of this road. It is
several feet wide, firm but damp. Ruts along the side of the road are
brimming with swamp runoff. They trickle away into the forest to the north.

A dull thunk sounds from inside the Lobstrocity as the hatch falls open, and a very haggered looking Gforte exits. The one eyed man rolls his shoulder and opens his closed eye, reaching into the empty socket and pulling out a large shard of metal. "Glad I already lost that one."

Gforte pulls several more minor shards of glass from his face, and walks over to the claw of the Lobstrocity that has remained closed. He reaches into the joint, twists something, and the claw falls open, revealing the sleeping soldier from before.

After a few moments of step-down, Jacen and Sunflash have started to make their way back to the Mech. "Why do you always manage to get us into trouble?" "Why do you always manage to come along anyway?" "Good question."

The cramped figure inside the claw looks up at the bleeding man, In a very soft voice Avaline says "Does that mean we didn't win"?

"Goddamn right." Power begins crackling around Gforte as he thrusts his hand out, seeking to grab hold of the girl's forehead. "Now shut up."

The pair of hylians come to a stop a few feet behind Gforte. Sunflash watches intently, curious as to what trick is being done; while Jacen is splitting his attention between the Mech and the surrounding forest.

Gforte unfolds the magic that was taught to him, and lets the force of that hover on his hand, allowing the soldier to feel the potential there. "Listen closely. I'm pissed off, you've angered me. I know how to crack your skull open and pull the information out by force. Tell me everything I want to know or I'll do exactly that. Get it? Where is your damn base?"

"I can't! I mean. I. I, And you! and." Avaline falls into an uninteligible mess of words as she tries to give a vlid reason for why she cannot tell this man what he want's to know. Tears now rolling down her face.

Not overly interested in watching the poor lady getting her head opened up, Jacen turns back to peer at the woods. He freezes, and after a moment he quietly turns back and nudges Sunflash in the ribs. "There's something in the shadows in the treeline." Sunny, as calmly as he can manage in an effort not to spoil the game, makes a show of streatching his neck and back; taking a good hard look in the mentioned direction during the process.

Gforte doesn't care for the woman answering squeemishly, and simply does exactly as he threatened, pushing the magic past his hand and slamming his mind against the soldier's. A faint blue haze surrounds Gforte, and his voice takes on a layered tone. "Tell me what I want to know. NOW."

Some of the shadows against the treeline DO -seem- to sway lightly here and there, but not super-conspicuous. At least, not to those just idly passing by.

Avaline stops jibbering and stares wide eyed at Gforte. "I... I don't know... I only have ever been at the Veldt outpost. I've never even seen the Citadel. Grunts are not allowed to even know where the Citadel is." Especially not Soul Linked."

Gforte scowls, and pushes his power further against Avaline, attempting to shatter any potential mental barriers. "Tell me everything, Now."

The path ahead actually stretches for a short distance onward, seemingly where those who survived earlier had fled to. Just noticeably, a few bright motes of light can be seen flickering therefrom, illuminating a clearing of sorts a bit more clearly than the moonlight is able to.

Sunflash shot Jacen a glance that was rewarded with a shrug. "Stay with him." With a quick nod at Gforte, Sunny walks off calmly towards the tree line, hands clasped behind his back as if he was simply admiring the view. A mutter escapes his lips: "I'm not going to be able to end the night without burning the whole forest down, am I."

Avaline says ' The Citadel is the primary base of operations. Where all the prisoners are escorted to after being processed at any particular outpost. I was ....... "reborn" at the outpost. I've never seen the Citadel. I don't know where the outpost is exactly... but I could find it. It's a good distance from here. I don't know how long I was out but if your fight took any longer then a few minutes the wagons have probably passed through the gate already.... Please don't hurt me, Just kill me... please?'

The shadows waver slightly at Sunflash's words, and out from a deeper part of them, well within the trees themselves, Jillian herself steps out, her face a mask of grim determination for some cause or another. She merely stands in the moonlight where she can be seen, but she doesn't look at Sunflash, at least not long after letting him know she was there. Instead, her vertical-irised gaze is solidly on Gforte and the soldier, wordless in her action.

Gforte growls openly at the soldier, and widens his eyes, staring directly into the girl's. "No. You aren't dying. You are living. I am in control of your mind now, and you'll do as I damn well please with you. Forget your wish to die, and instead live in defiance of what you stood for before."

Avaline goes still, staring up at the man and speaks in a softer voice, more calm."There are things worse then death."

Avaline says ' ..I don't want to become a Forgotten....'

Sunflash manages, through the grace of some higher power, to NOT actually throw his shoulder out as he stomped on his reflex to blast at Jill. A quick glance of his shoulder to make sure that she wasn't looking at some punk sneaking up on him, then he peered back to Jillian. "...Hi?"

Jacen, meanwhile, is on guard and on edge behind Gforte; a few glances in Sunflash's direction but he mostly counts that direction out as a possible threat. At least until the explosions start.

Gforte shakes his head at Avaline. "Do what I said. And, at this point, sleep. Now."

Avaline sleeps.

Gforte pulls his hand away from the girl, and rolls his neck. "Well that's fucking great. Who'se up for charging forward blindly again?"

Jillian remains where she is. Only her tail flicks, here and there, the spade of which glints somewhat in the moonlight, as if possessing an edge of some non-fleshy form. She still only watches, but at the notion that Gforte does, indeed, decide not to kill the woman, she relaxes at least somewhat, offering Sunflash her attention, albeit still wordless.

Jacen shrugs at Gforte's question. "She said its somewhere in the Veldt, right? That's a bit of a trek from here, if we go on foot. Also, Sunflash went to check out something in the trees."

Sunflash has crossed his arms by now, frowning. "Are you quite finished with the superior 'watcher from the shadows' act?" Not quite a glare, but not overly trusting look on his face either.

Gforte walks back to the hatch, talking to Jacen "No, her base was in the Veldt, the citadel is probably down the pathway." Gforte reaches into the lobstrocity and pulls out a small backpack, strung with a few grenades and with a large lump in it. "Lead the way kid, I'm hurting."

"If only you knew." Jillian steps past Sunflash and toward the others, flicking her dark hair idly as she passes him. Her hips sway in their seductive means that she likely has little control of, given her heritage, but her face is of stern reproach as she takes a position in front of the crustaceous machination, more or less next to Gforte as he equips himself from its interior. "You've got a penchant for recklessness."

Gforte raises an eyebrow at Jillian as she approaches, and grins a bit lopsidedly at her, pulling a spear out and leaning on it. "Well there you are, saves me a bit of worry. 'Cor I've got a reckless streak."

Issuing a sigh that only actually escapes from her nostrils, Jillian waves one hand softly, dispersing some kind of effect she'd had in place up until this point. With her other, she conjures a sparkling series of lights in a mid-grade healing spell, attempting to fix Gforte up from the wounds he's likely sustained during the course of this 'recklessness'. A flicker of concern crosses her pale face as she does this, but it doesn't stay long.

"I apologize. As I mentioned, I have superiors." Jillian admits this as kind of an afterthought.

Having followed you back to the group, Sunflash rolls his eyes in Jacen's direction; who simply shrugs back. "If you two are done exchanging unpleasentries, I heard something about heading down the road?" Jacen just manages to hide the smirk.

"Your superiors need better timing, Jill. Now, you wanna stick back with the chick? Me and these two are going to go raid an enemy fortress apparentally." Gforte straightens up as the magic hits him, and re-adjusts the backpack on his shoulder.

Jillian opts not to say anything, but finishes her healing act as her hand drops back down to her side, looking sidelong at the female soldier, with a nod. "Happily, actually. Though I'm not keen on the idea of riding inside of one of that things' claws, if that's what you were inferring. If need be, I can carry her with us."

Jillian obviously didn't catch the part where it was assumed that she was staying behind. Either that, or she ignored it. Hard to tell with her.

Sunflash happened to catch both parts of the conversation, but didn't really care either way. "Could I point out that attempting to knock down the front gate of something called a 'Citadel' is probably a stupid idea?" Jacen's head does a vigoures nodding motion.

Gforte shrugs at Sunflash's objection, and leans his spear against the Lobstrocity's open claw. Afterwards, he collects Avaline, puts her in the pilot's seat of the lobstrocity, and buckles her in. "Stupid, but who cares?" He closes the hatch, and pulls a small black box out of his pocket. Lifiting the box, he presses a button and the Lobstrocity reacts instantly, falling down and curling somewhat drastically into a ball. "Mech isn't going anywhere, too damaged. That mode will stick until I turn it off,

Gforte says ' And the girl will be safe. Jillian, you seemed to misunderstand me. You can stay here, or come with us. Or me at least.'

Jillian seems displeased with the notion of actually being separated from the soldier. Perhaps they hadn't seen what she saw back in Viorar, but the images hadn't left her mind yet. Nevertheless, sometimes you just gotta give a little. She nods to this, then. "I'll go." Simply-stated.
"Stupid and probably fruitless but okay, why not. Been awhile since I laid seige to a place." Sunflash shrugged at Jacen, who simply sighed and adjusted his shield. "Lets get this over with."

Gforte nods, collects his spear, and leads the small crew down the path that Rana tread earlier, assumedly towards more enemies.

Fa'Diel - Forest Dead-End
This clearing in the woods is brightly lit not only due to the overhead
moon's influence, but also from a visible charge in the air; motes of
charged energy crackle and pop throughout the air, bursting in occasional
noisy expulsions of power. The stench of magic is overwhelming here, even
to those who aren't generally influenced by its presence.

The area is empty, aside from the scatterted pieces of a destroyed wagon and an out of place log that one would assume was hurled here. The cracks of energy in the air brake the silence. The only Raven Emblem is the mangled one lieing under the log.

The various tracks of the Raven Emblemed wagons and those who were escorting them stop abrubptly near the center of the clearing. A few of the footprints only having half imprints on the ground.

Gforte bends down and picks up a stick, before tossing it up and down in his hand idily. After a few seconds, he throws the stick towards the point where the tracks cut off suddenly.

The stick Gforte tosses toward the cutoff merely lands on the ground, possibly bouncing a couple of times before coming to rest; suffice it to say, there is nothing actually there after all. Behind him, Jillian takes it upon herself to actually move toward the tracks in question, her thin tail lifting into the air in apparent curiosity, much like a cat's.

Jillian leans down, checking not only the half-tracks, but also the air itself nearby, testing for any sort of displacement effect residuals. After all, it seemed only too obvious that there was something here at once point, then no longer after.

Sunflash shrugs. "Nothing purely invisiable, plus the phsyical overdose of mana. Clearly some flavor or another of portal magic, though the residue is an odd touch." He raises a finger up as if to test the wind, but with his eyes closed.

Jacen simply stands at the back of the group. While he understands the magical significance, and can in fact feel something different here, if it were not for the others, he would have passed it over for allergies. Instead of babbling over something he knows nothing about, he sips on a bottle of water and tries to take in the situation.

Gforte cocks his head. "Maybe the portal's still around, just requires a certian word or action to open. This is supposed to be an entrance to the citadel, so it's probably a permanant entrance. Got any plans for how to crack it open?"

Jillian gets to her feet, her tail falling somewhat from its high aerial position. "I think the portal is likely one-sided. I feel the impression it made here at one time, but it no longer exists from this end. What I can assume is that it activates from one side to the other, but not interchangeably so." She frowns softly, idly adjusting the open bust of her turtleneck. "Essentially, since we weren't here when it happened, we've missed our chance."

Sunflash nods at Jillian. "Believe she has the right of it. Besides, that enterouge back there wouldn't have been much of a guardpost if this was a permament entrance. Need to go to plan B." He shrugs.

Jacen shrugs and steps forward next to Sunflash. " Didn't I hear something about the Veldt? Maybe there's something more concrete there?" He lowers his voice slightly "Literally."

Gforte looks at Sunflash with a raised eyebrow. "There's a plan B?"

Sunflash smirks at Gforte. "There's /always/ a plan B."

"If there are any further leads, I suggest we take them. The longer we wait to try and find something that may not want to be found, the further away it inevitably gets." Jillian realized this logic was probably obvious, but sometimes it registers a little more clearly when verbally spoken.

Sunflash shrugs. "Then lets go ask whatshername some more questions and start walkin." With that, the sorcerer starts off back to the Lobstermech.