So it turns out the Undead were a rather large problem in Ninetails at one point. After the previous clears of a tomb and an overun village Daiyu had been poking around more on the matter, and eventually came across Payon Cave and the duty associated with it. Well, more of these she does, the more it keeps other people free for dealing with the war matters abroad, so she puts out a call for others interested in a little undead skullbashing.
Schneider is always bang alongside the idea of incinerating undead, and this will help out Ninetails, of course, and ... well, he hasn't blown anything up recently and he's really in the mood to set some monsters on fire until they pop. He likes that. So when a nearby blip goes up that a party is forming to fight some undead in the area, he is quick to join up, and shows up with a wide smile and his long platinum hair looking very eighties.
Undead need to be an unproblem in Ninetails. Not to fear, a samurai is here. Soujiro hears word of a potential for combat and adjusts his regularly scheduled training for irregularly scheduled Hunters Guilding. Two katanas. Two blue eyes. One smile. Mobs dont stand a chance.
Undead needed to be purged she was a holy sorts in the terms of magic so here she was. She's very up for puring them but given who put out hte party invite? She didn't tag them till she arrived and she smiles and it's a bit like a shark's own smile.
"Hello Daiyu! It's been a long time and after this is done we're going to have a 'little chat'."
She shifts gears grinning good naturedly at the other two.
"Soujiro of the Tea Party? It's a honor to meet you and I heard of your experiments Schneider! Most interesting."
She then shoots a death look back at Daiyu.
"Why yes I'm healing for you all."
Daiyu's expression briefly pales slightly at Llyn's arrival, which she quickly covers by turning to the side a moment and adjusting her glasses. "I had heard they managed to rescue you," is all she says, and promptly moves onto the matter at hand. There's... something between the two of them, maybe from both being formerly Crowned adventurers, but no farther context is given.
Not when there is a mission at hand to complete. Before the actual cave they have to pass through the woods surrounding it, and that brings them to crossing pathes with a group of skeletons out on patrol. Daiyu immeadiately snaps open both of her warfans. "Looks like we got an unwelcoming committee already..."
Soujiro of DTP, thats me! The blue haired samurai offers a salt-of-the-earth smile over towards Llyn, "Looking forward to working with you," he says, "lets train some time after this!" Best way to get to know someone is through training, is the Souji way. Also because he likes training. And combat.
Fortunately for the sword saint, he does not need to wait long. "Skeletons. A classic enemy," the warrior says as his katanas are safely still in their sayas. The first draw pulls out Kogarasumaru, wielding a cleaving arch of divine light to the squad before him. It is very effective on the undead.
Schneider smiles to Llyn as she remarks about his experiments. He assumes she means about flying. "Hopefully we will see something come out of them," he agrees as we head through the forest to our destination. But something is amiss, and Daiyu has noted a patrol of animated skeletons. This is not a huge threat, and he will shout, "Fiery Power Blast of the Damned!" and hold his hands out dramatically. Raw magical energy bursts forth and into the skeletons, inflicting serious damage at a negligible cost in mana.
Llyn looks at Daiyu. "Yes they did, I got very lucky. Don't worry you can trust me right I mean I trust you ... right?" There's still not context but it's like two people at a party who might fight but do not want to get kicked out. She's behaving as she looks to see the inbound monsters.
"By the light of the sea be purged creatures who stain the land of the living!"
Daiyu imbues her warfans with Light to easily slice through some of the skeletons. Between three Light users and a fire mage they didn't really stand a chance, clearing the way beyond.
The small party soon finds the cave they're looking for. Unfortunately, it isn't far in until they come to a chamber that's full of zombies. Daiyu pauses to take stock of the situation. "Too many to fight them all. If you must resort to combat, focus on a path through to the next passage. I will scout ahead." The fox woman becomes shrouded in darkness as she darts off, intending to just avoid attention altogether if she can.
Soujiro Seta is not sure what the deal between Llyn and Daiyu is, but he isn't about to ask. These things have their own way of sorting themselves out and nothing brings people closer than being pitched to a team activity like beating the tar out of monsters. Skeletons? Check. Zombies? Serving Table 1. The easy thing to do would be to slice and dice. No. Too easy, even with this horde. Better yet to work on his evasion training by keeping out of reach of them.
Wiff! Too slow, zombie. Wiff wiff! Try again.
This continues until Soujiro is dodging five or more zombies at a time. He is doing a good tank job at distracting and holding agro, too.
Schneider isn't particularly fast, in game, despite having played basketball in school ... well, just a year before joining the game. So he will do his best job sprinting aroud the edge of the cavern, and when the zombies get to close, he shouts out, "GUNZENRO!" and gives them a faceful of magical fire. This incinerates the ones close enough to catch him, and he sprints on. Another "GUNZENRO!" incinerates zombies that are moving to cut him off, and none of the rest are in position to catch up with him.
Llyn does quite well in purging the unead ahead she does keep with the party tossing out heals where she needs to. They will push on deeper there's too many of them to deal with normally so it's more like dealing with a flood. She's just going to attempt to evade and follow her comrades!
They're all Scale Emblem members. SOMEONE was going to go the 'burn a path through' route. That's why Daiyu specified to focus on making a way through instead of trying to incinerate the entire horde.
As everyone manages their way through Daiyu is already at the entrance farther into the dungeon. This place was, in fact, once a mine. There's the remains of some minecart tracks, but they're too in disrepair to use as a guide just by a glance. "None of the enemies in this section are very high threat.... but navigating it may be difficult." She said she was going to scout ahead and that's proving to be useful at least.
Schneider follows along once we get past the zombies, and the new challenge is to be the first one to incinerate the occasional undead that lurch toward us onesy-twosies. "Wait, are we going the right way?" he asks, holding a ball of fire aloft as a light source. "Can anyone figure out which way to go?"
"All ways are the right way when you go there together," Soujiro offers as he offers enthusiasm to the situation. He is up there at the front ready to tank anything that comes their way. "More random encounters is more experience and loot," he offers with a bounce to his step. Its about the journey, not the destination with this guy. Which is good. Because if he was navigating, they would be there for a long time.
Llyn has had a bit of a time with the unead, the good news is? She's rescued quick enough by the fast thinking of her comrades. She'll keep pushing ahead with everyone else. "Wait don't tell me..." She will pull out a map, wait has she been mapping this place? Yes she has she checks her map then looks back.
"We want to head this way..."
"Good to see your navigation skills are still intake." Between Llyn's mapping and Daiyu's scouting they manage to keep the Party from getting lost. They eventually come out into one of the mine's former staging chambers, though now all that remains is some small living accomidations.
But before they can be inspected the Party is set upon by some frigid leaping form, screaming about protecting a former love even though he seems to be the only one here. He keeps leaping about the cavern to attack the ground and then try to escape attacks. There's really only one thing to be done about this, reason is beyond this creation.
Daiyu takes out one of her alchemical gas bombs and uses a fan to bat it at the creature, in an attempt to stall his movement long enough for the others to engage.
Leaping Lizard Latman! Soujiro keeps his katanas out and engages in jumping mimicry. It is heavy on the stamina/mana to keep up with it, but his natural regeneration there seem endless. When a dungeon throughs you a challenge, make it extra hard. It is the best kind of training for the big battles and not to get comfortable with powering through things. Still, he /does/ make it look easy with how he is hopping around.
Schneider throws up his cape as a shield as the jumping maniac jumps in to attack, and the magic cape is proof against the undead's attack. It is jumping so fast it's hard to attack, Schneider hurling fire at it willy-nilly, but he's got to throw up his cape again to defend himself before he can get it right in the face with a burst.
Llyn is a very good at support she's all right at fighting but today as she channels Grand Cross through her fists. It's too much she's just a bit overwhelmed by the enemy she should have hung back, it was far too late she does not die though that's the good news.
The creature's leaping movement makes it hard to contend with, but with the Samurai and the magic knight's cloak the Party is well protected, giving the them time to wittle it down with what hits they can get. It takes time, but persistance wins the encounter for the group in the end.
Then it turns out that the creature was not the only one here after all, as a more diminuative female wiggles out of the bed and starts hopping towards them. "I hunger... hunger so much..."
".. A hopping vampire, here?" Then again, with how much Japan and China once influenced each other's cultures Daiyu really should not be surprised. "Be wary of melee combat. If true to the lore she does not need to bite to drain your essence, just her touch will do so." Daiyu again resorts to her other skills, maneuvering to lob several of her chemical bombs at the creature.
"Then your hunger shall come to an end," Soujiro says with the flavor of mercy that comes at the end of a shotgun. No shotgun, just katanas. The samurai lowers his stance, waiting for the fast advance of the melee that Daiyu warned of. With the radiant life that Souji gives off, he probably looks like a snack. He doesn't move, building his power to finish this in a single strike.
Don't blink or you'll miss it.
The vampy lady's claws would find a motion blur as Soujiro appears on the other side with his katanas on full extension. Soujiro turns to face her, stance more relaxed as the damage lines appear afterwards. Critical hit. Holy damage. Watch that health bar get wrecked.
Once they reach the Munak she frowns.
There's no rage on her face but sadness as she channels her holy powers she knows what she's got to do.
"SANCTUARY Your hunger ends this day! Your torment is over..."
No melee? No problem! Schneider is a spellcaster, anyhow, and staying out of melee is fine with him. He has plenty of alternatives to getting up close and personal. "Chew on this!" he says with a smirk. One of the most gratuitous spells Schneider has involves him chanting, "Deep Doomsday. To the spirits of land and air, bound by the pact, fulfill your obligation now." No mention of what spirits, or what obligation they have to him. But it must be a pretty serious one, because when he intones the word "MEGADETH!" all hell breaks loose, metaphorically, with intense flames searing the unhappy monster.
The undead girl's hunger will end tonight, but not by feeding. The party is small and quick, acting quickly to keep their distance and outmaneuver the otherwise nimble enemy with their tactics. Daiyu stuns it with a gas bomb, the caustic fumes burning necrotic flesh. Giving the others a chance to pelt it from a safe distance with fire spells and light embued Artes. They repeat the process, until the undead thing finally collapsed like her previous protected did, withering into nothing but dust and motes.
"Excellent." Daiyu closes her fans once the task is done. "Without a binding presence down here the other undead should be easy pickings to deal with for a time."
"A good time to make the most of it," sparkles Soujiro, who undoubtedly will spend extra time on his way out cleaning up the undead. This didn't heavily challenge him, so he considers ways to spice it up. Focus on his left sword hand, perhaps? With no dodging, parry only? Challenges are part of the fun!