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Breaking in Rumia

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Chibi-Reaper, Jun 6, 2012.

  1. Chibi-Reaper It is Dark.

    Well, it's about time I turned attention back in this direction, to some degree.

    A set of links to chapters go here. Strongly advise reading those, if you haven't already, unless you prefer to begin your reading somewhere in the middle of a book, or backwards entirely, in which case you're free to do as you please. Unfortunately, you'll probably have to wait a bit for the end to come around, if you simply insist on starting from there.

    Contents assembled to Chapter 50, now.

    Chapter 01- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-28#post-6246098
    Chapter 02- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-31#post-6254468
    Chapter 03- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-32#post-6263017
    Chapter 04- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-34#post-6267450
    Chapter 05- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-35#post-6268806
    Chapter 06- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-37#post-6273367
    Chapter 07- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-38#post-6281714
    Chapter 08- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-41#post-6285666
    Chapter 09- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-51#post-6305223
    Chapter 10- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-52#post-6309575
    Chapter 11- http://forums.spacebattles.com/thre...t-discussion-pt-3.193046/page-59#post-6339432
    Chapter 12- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/#post-7917991
    Chapter 13- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-2#post-7944144
    Chapter 14- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-4#post-7989026
    Chapter 15- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-7#post-8037353
    Chapter 16- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-9#post-8043194
    Chapter 17- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-12#post-8046091
    Chapter 18- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-14#post-8049987
    Chapter 19- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-16#post-8052086
    Chapter 20- http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-20#post-8058936
    Chapter 21: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-24#post-8081835
    Chapter 22: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-25#post-8089561
    Chapter 23: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-27#post-8101461
    Chapter 24: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-29#post-8116620
    Chapter 25: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-35#post-8670958
    Chapter 26: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-36#post-8733225
    Chapter 27: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-39#post-10606986
    Chapter 28: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-40#post-10608183
    Chapter 29: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-41#post-10608957
    Chapter 30: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-42#post-10609563
    Chapter 31: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-43#post-10610118
    Chapter 32: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-43#post-10610587
    Chapter 33: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-46#post-10617266
    Chapter 34:http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-47#post-10617870
    Chapter 35:http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-48#post-10619066
    Chapter 36: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-48#post-10619743
    Chapter 37:http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-49#post-10620186
    Chapter 38:http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-51#post-10625973
    Chapter 39:http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-51#post-10626739
    Chapter 40: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-52#post-10627893
    Chapter 41: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-52#post-10628320
    Chapter 42: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-53#post-10628904
    Chapter 43: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-53#post-10629387
    Chapter 44: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-57#post-10638317
    Chapter 45: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-58#post-10640136
    Chapter 46: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-59#post-10646541
    Chapter 47: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-60#post-10658105
    Chapter 48: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-62#post-10666997
    Chapter 49: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-63#post-10676157
    Chapter 50: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-63#post-10677197
    Chapter 51: http://forums.spacebattles.com/threads/breaking-in-rumia.226659/page-65#post-10687667
  2. Chibi-Reaper It is Dark.

    -----------------------

    Chapter Twelve

    -----------------------

    This place wasn't like the forest.

    There weren't enough trees to offer proper shade, and there were too many two-legged things wandering about for it to feel comfortable with all the not-pack not-prey. The stink of their fear of it had ebbed, given time, and now even were there opportunity it was uncertain that it could muster up the inclination to chase one if the opportunity arose and it fled.

    On the other side of things, food was regularly provided, and though it regretted the lack of the hunt, chase, kill, it could not deny that this was... convenient, and left it more time to simply laze about in the times it was not eating, where before it would spend all its time either hunting something or searching out something to hunt, were it not asleep from the effort of the day.

    The strange two-legged thing concerned it, though.

    From the beginning, it had not shown even a trace of fear in its presence. Not so much as wary hesitation, and that alone...

    It was not afraid of the two legs. But it could be wary.

    And it was, indeed, wary, as the strange one approached it. Even now, without an iota of trepidation.

    It could attack. It could always attack, lunging forward and burying fangs into soft, sweet, warm flesh. It had to know that it could attack, though. It knew, and yet it still did not display any fear, and this concerned it. Just as the soft knock to its tender nose, after a low growl and recalling a mother's annoyed nips to keep too playful young in line concerned it.

    It was not afraid of the two legs.

    But perhaps it would not attack, either.

    "There's a good wolf." Louise said, as the beast assumed a position approximating something like submission.

    "Not sure this is a good idea..." The sword rattled, strapped to her back as she unfortunately discovered she didn't have quite enough stature to unsheathe such a blade from her hip.

    "Your concerns are noted." Louise replied, dismissing them without verbally admitting to it.

    "I mean, subterfuge, this is supposed to be a quiet thing, right? Big furry brute like this..."

    "My sister is a known... animal enthusiast, I suppose would be the term? She has an extensive menagerie. Bringing an odd beast along for her inspection, when it's widely known I am venturing thence-ward already, will arouse no suspicion. In addition, I will require some form of mount as I do not intend to walk the entire distance, I suspect the wolf will be superior to a normal horse in traversing shortcuts through the forest, as Guiche has already departed and will likely be vexed should he have to await me at the meeting place overlong. If I bring it, I cannot bring a horse, as the animals spook when it is too near, and its fur is thick and soft." She finishes, a little petulantly. "My little wounds are nearly healed, but they will much prefer riding what feels to be more a mass of soft pillows than hardened leather."

    "Alright, alright. No place for saddlebags or anything, though."

    "I carry a full purse of gold and my wand. It is all I'll require. Rumia will follow by the air, unfortunately visible as her general cloak of darkness is, with any luck if she keeps low toward the tree tops and moves quickly she will go unnoticed..."

    Without further word, Louise seats herself on the wolf's back, taking a moment to savor it. It is something like soft pillows. The wolf, however, does not seem immediately amenable to getting up and loping in the direction she wants to go.

    It takes another moment or two before she lets off a low growl of her own.

    "... Beast. You face a choice. You will serve as a mount, or I will have you as a rug." She says, voice slowly lowering to a dangerous quality.

    The wolf doesn't show any indication of understanding her none too subtle threat, but after a moment it heaves itself up to its feet and pads out of the open enclosure.

    There are some further false starts after this, of course, but it is not too terribly long before Loise finds herself having properly left the campus, and having sort of met an understanding with the wolf about things that would make it, grudgingly, turn in the direction she wanted to go, and things that would make it yelp in sharp annoyance and try a quick motion to throw her off and snap at her that had to be met with knocking the sword against its head.

    ---

    Derflinger watched. Sort of. In the sense that he had no eyes with which to see, in any case, any more than he had any traits that would identify him as 'male' beyond some deliberately chosen quirks of voice and speech.

    He was a sword, after all. When it came down to it, he was most of the time remarkably devoid of the presence any sort of organ, sensory or otherwise. The rest of the time is entirely beside the point.

    He had a name, though. Obviously. He just wasn't really sure he wanted to give it out, just yet.

    The familiar-thing 'felt' wrong. Sort of like the Gandalfr, and of everything in the world, he should know what it felt like to be held by the Gandalfr. Which was itself the quandary. There shouldn't be any 'sort of' about it. You either were the Gandalfr, or you were not, and there wasn't any wishy-washy, half-hearted uncertainty involved in the matter.

    And yet, there she was. And she felt like she could, sort of, be the Gandalfr. But again, as he'd said to the old man, if she was, then something was horribly wrong indeed.

    There was the other girl, of course. The one who insisted that whatever her familiar was, it wasn't a legendary familiar of ancient times. That would require, among other things, for her to be a legendary void mage, after all, which was clearly impossible.

    Well, Derflinger didn't know about that. She definitely 'tasted', if such a description was apt, like a void mage. Prolonged exposure to her had all but cemented that conclusion. He was pretty sure she was one, and again, this was something he had a great deal of experience in. He could tell these things.

    He just wasn't sure that he would be able to convince her of it, if he came out and said so, rather than getting, just for example, tossed down a well. Which had been a particularly damp and miserable assortment of decades, before the bucket had managed to catch enough on him to drag him back out again.

    In any case, it might be better that words like 'Void Mage' and 'Legendary Gandalfr' didn't get trotted out all over the place, come to think of it. After all, he'd had some experience with both, beyond, even, the originals.

    Of very recently, he'd begun sifting through faint memories, to compare the endings to such excursions, and was beginning to realize that there was an alarming majority of cases where, when it all came down to it, people calling themselves such things ended up being stripped of their wands and weapons, drugged to the point they couldn't fight or cast anything, and burned at the stake for heresy. Barring unfortunate well incidents.

    In the end though, he was just a tool. It wasn't really his place to decide on things, just to fill a specific, and often final, purpose. It didn't mean that he wasn't allowed to think, of course, but...

    Well, for now, perhaps he would just keep quiet about the whole matter.

    It wasn't as if anyone had asked him any important questions about this sort of thing, after all.

    ---

    When all was said and done, it wasn't as though Louise needed to have been worried about keeping Guiche waiting. Quite the reverse.

    When he did arrive, it was nearly an hour after the appointed meeting time, in a fancy horse-drawn carriage. Had she not had Rumia, who had had plenty of time to catch up in the interim, hunt the forests, and drag back a still-struggling deer for the wolf's consumption, she suspected that the horses would have not just been mightily alarmed at its presence nearby, but bolted and been run down by it.

    He was not alone.

    "Guiche de Gramont." Louise said, very slowly, as he stepped out of the carriage, dabbing carefully at the corner of his mouth with a kerchief. "You brought servants?"

    "A pair, of course." He replied, seeming astonished that she would question this. "It simply would not do to travel without proper comfort. Unseemly. People would talk."

    "More than they will already talk, about your being called to task over a certain gold-sniffing commoner?" Louise questioned, careful to keep pretences up. "There are certain words, Guiche de Gramont, and I am no longer quite certain you are entirely clear upon their meaning. Shall I lend you a dictionary?"

    "Please! There is no cause for alarm. Jaques and Roguespierre are quite efficient and discreet, they shan't be telling any tales of our business." Guiche countered, laughing off her concern.

    "Indeed they shall not, for they will continue on with an empty carriage in the direction of the Gramont estates." Louise snaps, and Guiche is astonished once again.

    "Continue on such a trip without servants, without a carriage? Are you quite mad, Valliere? Would you have me walk the entire way?"

    "I am sorely tempted to do so..." She begins, then pauses as she notes an amused seeming griffin stepping about from behind the carriage. Her gaze rises.

    That of her fiance, the Viscount Wardes, meets it, amusement equal to his own griffin.

    "Ah, and more! I was so fortunate as to meet with further assistance from the Princess, upon this endeavor!" Guiche says, cheerily.

    -There is one small matter, which must be dealt with with the utmost of discretion.-

    "This, Louise..." Guiche continues, seeming mildly awed and delighted at the man's presence. "Is none other than the Griffin Knight-"

    "Viscount Wardes." Louise interrupts. "We have met."

    "Oh, come Louise." Wardes chuckles merrily. "How cold. Is that any fashion in which to greet the man to which you are betrothed?"

    "Engaged, truly?" Guiche says with a start. "This is not a recent event? How on earth, I wonder, did you manage to keep from boasting about...?"

    -With the utmost of discretion.-

    "It does not matter. You will forgive me, Viscount, as business such as this... leaves me ill of temper."

    "Understandable indeed. The details, of course, should not be discussed in the open, but it is imperative that this letter be retrieved. Milady is most concerned, and has requested I assist in whatever way I can manage."

    -With the utmost of discretion. My dear Louise, I would not bring this to you, but there is none else I might trust so with this matter. With the utmost of discretion.-

    Something deep within her guts is twisting itself in knots, with the subtle sense of wrongness about this situation. A clandestine operation such as this... she hated to admit it, but even aside from trustworthiness, there is a reason she could imagine Henrietta would come to schoolchildren over experienced Knights and mages.

    Deniability. If caught, there was no official link to the crown, between herself and a pair of nobodies, a nearly failed mage and a random son of a noble family of no huge political importance. Their deaths would be unpleasant, but there would be no political ramifications, or proof of the crown sticking its nose where it technically didn't belong.

    Not so with Viscount Wardes. If caught, he was known enough for unfortunate questions to be asked.

    Her paranoia was howling at her, a little sense of dread deep within her gut. Before, she might have dismissed it out of hand. Ignored it.

    Because surely, it couldn't be right. Viscount Wardes....

    The man was her Fiance, they were betrothed. He was a close friend of the family, he might as well be family, and at some point he would be family. Sense of wrongess, that this wasn't right and he shouldn't be here aside...

    Would Henrietta, the Princess that had come to her in such a fuss and worked up into what was almost a desperate panic, very tightly controlled as it might have been, have really turned around and sent another person along? Much less someone so well known?

    Even so, this was Viscount Wardes she was thinking of. How else would he have learned of this matter?

    .... Espionage?

    .... Treason against the crown?

    That couldn't be right. As well accuse one of her own sisters. As well accuse her own mother of treason.

    "Send the carriage along." She ordered, choosing to glower at Guiche rather than focus on her own thoughts. "I am uncertain as to how well my own steed will take to another rider. Still, unless the Viscount would be so kind as to allow you passage upon his griffin, I suppose we will have to discover this for ourselves."

    Guiche looks, with some trepidation, upon the wolf. It sniffs the air, and its eyes gleam as it looks right back at him, almost deliberately licking at its long, pointy teeth. He turns instead to the griffin and rider, who stare back with an equal sense of grim amusement at the spectacle.

    He lets loose a heartfelt, pitiful groan.

    ... The Vicount Wardes, a traitor? Pah. Stuff and nonsense. But even though, she finds that she cannot quite banish a last, small seed of wriggling doubt.

    -With the utmost of discretion. I beg of you, Louise, speak of this matter to no-one at all. It must be handled with the utmost of discretion.-

    ----
    Tavarokk, Zam, darthdavid and 34 others like this.
  3. Nekraa Lost

    Hurray! It continues, and Louise becomes a wolf rider. And Louise is starting to doubt. Or rather, doesn't take things at face value.
  4. SmallTips Ally of convenience

    Index!
    Chibi-Reaper - TOUHOU: Breaking in Rumia (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)
  5. SolipsistSerpen Solipsist Serpent

    I'm extremely glad to see this continued.

    You made good use of repetition in the latest update and we got a look at how her recent experiences are causing Louise to mature, into someone with healthier levels of suspicion.
  6. Zelinko IT'S FAIRY TIME!

    Why do I see the Wolf and Rumia eating next to each other and growling at each other over last bits of the deer. A full Rumia is a content Rumia.

    Just don't mind the ball of darkness floating around. Suprised Wardes isn't more perturbed by the ball of darkness who probably reeks of dead dear just chilling and wandering about.
  7. Jonen C F.M.D.G.

    Please
    I imagine by the time it comes to sharing a meal, the pecking order will be clearly established and the Wolf will consider Louise and Rumia as something equivalent to the pack Alpha and Beta.

    I propose the name Zeke for the wolf. Only because it's classic, and Fluffy is overused.
  8. Chibi-Reaper It is Dark.

    Oh, Rumia wouldn't stink of dead deer at all.

    There would be absolutely nothing left, as per normal consumption habits. She's a very thorough eater that way. No traces of little red droplets to smell of danger and leave little warning stains on her clothes, or anything.

    That sort of thing tends to give away things far too soon, which can be a problem if, gee willikers mister, I know a short cut right to where you say you need to go, you just have to follow me through these back alleys that nobody walks down, out of sight of everyone else, and you'll come out right there, let's go~

    Or something.
  9. Couch-Gamer On fire. Literally.

    Yes! I really like this story, and the hardened Louise is pretty badass as well. Looking forward to more.
  10. Twilight Trixie (=^. .^=)

    This story is a hit. Me playing Dragon's Dogma and then reading this isn't helping in any attempt to dislike it either!
  11. Rushil Not-so-Active Member

    I love your story, and especially how you can make it dark without it being depressing.

    Wish some of your other stories would be updated though. :p
  12. Robo Jesus Your Mechanical Messiah

    Oh, it's quite depressing if you're the family of that young woman that disappeared due to Rumia, or the family members of the young husband who got executed because he went out and hunted (on a nobles land) to feed his family, or you were a member of or related to the members of the village that Tabitha killed due to refusing to pay outrageous taxes.
  13. And my wished have been answered. Only a few days ago I asked Chibi if he would continue these, and huzzah! He did.
  14. Delusionist Seeker of Truth

    Sure, but that's merely darkness in the setting from the vantage point of the reader. It's entirely possible to have terrible things happening in your story without it being either dark or depressing through narrative tone and a skillful hand at directing emphasis.
  15. Hell yes, finally updates on this.

    Seems like Guiche will soon be taught the harsh lesson that is Real Life. Hopefully, he'll make it out of this alive.
  16. Robo Jesus Your Mechanical Messiah

    Oh, I quite know that. I'm just pointing out that (beyond it being all too accurate in regards to how people actually acted in the past), a great deal of what has occured in-story is quite depressing if you're not the Main Character(s) of the story. Not that I disagree with what Chikah (a nickname I use when he and I are talking[IMG]) has done with it, or that wouldn't do worse myself if I felt it would serve the story, just that you can't say that there aren't things going on that can't be considered depressing/terrifying/horrifying from the right point of view.[IMG]
  17. Rushil Not-so-Active Member

    Aside from the young woman (Katie?), the rest would have died in canon anyway...though that's a halfhearted excuse at best.

    I understand your point, but I really can't bring myself to feel anything, unless an author engages in Gorn. Perhaps it is simply what I seek in fics, perhaps its because it's vital to the plot, or perhaps I am simply sociopathic. Who knows.

    I don't disagree with you, but I, for some reason or the other, find nothing wrong with it.
  18. TheWeepingMan Solidarity

    *tears of joy*

    IT LIVES! Ah, Hardened Louise. Truly. You made my week.
  19. LordsFire Tel'dai Knight Errant

    This is just plain old good story telling. Seriousness, humor, character development, believably flawed people. Good stuff.
  20. crazyfoxdemon He Who Laughed Last

    I've been hoping you would update this for AGES...

    I'm liking how Louise has matured from her earlier ordeal..I'm also curious at what point Derf will step in with the Void Mage stuff?
  21. Looks good. Wardes has no idea what he's biting into. Should be interesting to see how the Albion affair turns out.
  22. Felix3D Meido Maou

    Ara, ara~

    Happy dark days are back!

    Looking forward to seeing more of my favorite TH and ZnT crossover.
  23. Doomsought Sliver Overlord

    What? No Rumia POV? For shame.
  24. SVNB Backup Odd Friendships

    I dare Wardes to try to Ring Andvari his fiance. I dare him to do that to Louise the ManGibbing Explosion.
  25. crazyfoxdemon He Who Laughed Last

    Is it weird that I'm invisioning the wolf as the one from Young Justice?

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