Artonus Gleave walked through Aile with a tune playing through his head. It was an interesting one, to be sure, but he couldn't focus on it. No, not when the people he passed had dismal expressions painting their faces. Had that old fool Juxon skipped a festival or something?
Pulling on his white goatee, Art started thinking. Why would Juxon miss a chance to make Supernova look good? Had the 13 years away been harsh on the guildmaster? Well, it was an interesting concept.
Artonus had to know.
A passing man offered a chance.
"Excuse me, fellow," Art said in his practice salesman tone, "Might I ask why this town is rather dead in the middle of the day?"
The man scratched his head. "You just get here?"
"Yes, sir," Art replied, touching the bandanna that covered his head in a tipping manner.
A grunt escaped the man. "Well, suppose you wouldn't know then." He pointed a finger towards the direction Art knew Supernova guild hall to be in. "The guild was attacked and destroyed yesterday. No one dares try and go near it."
What felt like a knife stabbing him passed through Art. "Destroyed? It might have been a young mage losing control."
The man sighed. "I wish it were, friend, but there's monsters in there now and we didn't see any trace of survivors. That damned dragon probably ate them."
Dammit! Art nodded thanks to the man and ran toward the guild hall. He wasn't dressed for a battle! His shirt and trousers were unimportant, but he liked this coat! Art shook his head. He had to focus. This was interesting, if still a bad situation. Juxon, you fool! How could you let a bloody dragon take the guild?
Supernova came into view in little time. Art knew the way with ease, after all, even after leaving 13 years ago. He glanced at the back of his right hand where the guild's insignia moved ever so slowly. The big star was still there, though some of the little stars seemed to have faded some. An omen?
The insignia left his mind with haste once Art saw the guild up close. From missing sections in the walls to places where the roof had collapsed, Supernova was truly a mess. It wasn't as bad as when old Master Kaenard had destroyed the training area, of course, but still...
Art wished he was powerful enough to see magic auras. He wanted to see how this could have happened.
"First things first," Art muttered to himself, placing a hand on the ground. As usual, steel slabs lay a few inches below the ground. Useful things. With Juxon around, the guild needed the protection from earthquakes.
Magic came alive in Artonus. It was a good feeling after two years of not using the stuff. Art focused and pushed his magic into the steel, forcing the material to change. It took a few moments since he was out of practice, but Art soon had a spear made of pure steel sprouting from the ground. He made two more before picking up one and grabbing the other two with levitation magic.
"This used to be a lot faster..." Art muttered, setting his sights on the ruined place he once called home, "Let's hope this dragon is weak."
The guild doors slam open and a black and yellow dragon stares at me from within. Art freezes. He knows that dragon. It's on par with Gates, that lizard Grimlock keeps with him! Dammit all!
Art starts to move, but stops himself when he realizes that the dragon is not looking at him. No, instead the beast is looking past him. Beast is trying to be smart, eh? Well, Art can outwit a dragon any...
Turning, Art notices a tall man walking toward him. A black cowl covers the newcomer's face, but a scar peeks out from underneath. A sense of familiarity comes from the man, though Art has never seen him before in his life.
A spear hovers to point at the tall man. "Friend or foe?" Art asks slowly, making sure to keep an eye on the dragon.
The man moves a little and reveals a place on his pale skin where the guild insignia lies. "Friend."
Well, that's a bloody relief. Though... Art looks curiously at the Supernova. His black hakama and pointed shoes are an oddity. "Help me deal with this dragon, will you?"
The man nods, giving off a hint of anger. Had Art not spent the last 13 years in business, he doubt he would have even noticed the slight change in emotion, yet he did not let it bother him. He was more curious in what the man could do...
"Watch out for it's speed. It's on the same level as Gates."
Art gripped the spear in his hands. Let's hope he wasn't too rusty.
He wears a long black scarf inscribed with red ink, a black cowl that shadows his forehead/eyes, a loose, dark red tunic and black hakama with pointed shoes.