Ravyn: So, this takes place tonight, after Travis gets to the Four Elements from his ordeal in Battery Park. He's tired...he needs rest And he's hurtin'.

Ravyn: Though not DAMAGED, he feels like he's got a migraine and a half.

Ellenweorc Estum: He heads to the kitchen first to get a glass of water before he goes to bed. He rubs his temple as he walks, as if that would help.

Ravyn: Aaaand to sleep he goes. Unconsciousness slowly takes him, pulling him away into it's embrace....until his eyes flutter open. He finds himself standing on a road. He's on a cold, ice-swept p;ain, with a small, rustic city behind him. The city is completely low-technology, and abandoned. The area is covered with a thick, heavy fog...it's difficult to see more then a few feet in any direction. The path looms in front of him, heading off into the murk.

Ellenweorc Estum: He stands there for a moment looking around him, at the city behind him, and the path in front. He decides to walk forward along the path into the murk, very slowly and cautiously.

Ravyn: There are muffled sounds out in the distance, off the side of the path, indistinct but hardly pleasant. Sounds of cries, yells, snarls. The path winds ahead for quite some time, until finally, he comes to the base of a tree...an enormous ash tree.

Ellenweorc Estum: He glances to the sides of the path at some of the louder noises. He cautiously walks up close to the large ash tree and looks up.

Ravyn: The tree is tall enough that Ellenweorc can't see more then a portion of the base, and maybe part of the trunk. It extends up, into the shrouding cloak of the fog.

Ellenweorc Estum: He reaches out and touches it, then starts to walk around it, trailing his hand along the bark lightly.

Ravyn: Same tree, all around. The thing is unbelievably thick...it takes Ellen a good half-hour to walk all the way around it.

Ellenweorc Estum: He tries to pick out a path up the tree that he could climb.

Ravyn: ((Gimme a Per+Athletics, diff 5))

Ellenweorc Estum: 8,2,4,

Ravyn: He finds a climbable route. It won't be fun, but it'll be climbable. The sounds out in the murk get a little bit louder, as if they're coming closer, pressing along the path.

Ellenweorc Estum: He looks back along the path, glances up the tree again, and then starts to climb.

Ravyn: Up, up, up he climbs. And no, it ISN'T fun. In fact, it's quite tiring, but he climbs on, eventually getting up past the fog after what feels like a good, solid hour of climbing.

Ellenweorc Estum: He tiredly looks around and up, clinging to the tree for his life.

Ravyn: Upon reaching this level, he realizes. It's not fog...it's smoke. Everything around is burning. The ice-swept plain, the trees...everything. Even the top of the giant ash, which extends all the way to the Heavens, is on fire. On the plain, he sees countless people, giants man, monsters, and everything imaginable, locked in combat.

Ellenweorc Estum: He lets out a shocked breath, holy hell. He looks around for some place to rest so that he can get a better view of the chaos, like some foothold that he can stand in or some branch.

Ravyn: Looking around, he finds a branch, and while it's occupied, there is room for him. The occupants are a couple large ravens, sitting side by side. They're watching the melee, with a look of sorrow on their face.

Ellenweorc Estum: Beasts of battle. He climbs onto the branch and watches the warring around them, trying to discern the leaders, or the tide of the war.

Ravyn: ((Per+Investigation))

Ellenweorc Estum: 2,9,2,

Ravyn: The good news is, it's not difficult to discern the leaders. Unlike most combats, where one would expect the leaders to be directing from the back, they're in the front. An enormous, mosntrous wolf is locked in battle with a one-eyed man holding a spear. Elswhere, a man with a giant hammer fights a massive snake-like creature.

Ellenweorc Estum: Fenris Wolf and Othinn, World Serpent and Thorr. He watches them fight, but he already knows how it will end.

Ravyn: The two ravens look at each other, then to Ellenweorc, and one of them speaks in a high-pitched caw. "The battle goes poorly."

Ellenweorc Estum: He glances up at the birds, and then looks down at the battle, trying to figure out why they think so.

Ravyn: The battle doesn't quite seem to be going how Ellenweorc remembers it. In fact, Thor, who should have slaid Jormangard by now, is fighting a losing battle, and Odin himself looks truly doomed. Something is very wrong here.

Ellenweorc Estum: He almost frowns. He asks the birds, "Why is it like this?"

Ravyn: "The balance is askew. Fear shakes the Aesir. They know they are doomed, and it weakens their resolve." The one speaking turns thoughtful eyes to Ellen.

Ellenweorc Estum: "Fear? But they know the prophecies. How could they fear what they know is predestined?"

Ravyn: "Prophecies must still be lived, Ellenweorc. They must still be fulfilled. Prophecies make it worse, for they know it is a path they cannot avoid. The inevitable is a very frightening thing."

Ellenweorc Estum: Something about that hit a chord inside him. He motions toward the two warriors. "Do you think the outcome will be as foretold?"

Ravyn: The first one who spoke, the more pondering one, looks back down. "Destiny is an odd thing. It is one that must be lived up to. Otherwise, even destiny can be denied."

Ellenweorc Estum: "Either way, it's the end of the world. They have nothing to lose. I don't understand why they're afraid."

Ravyn: The other raven looks at him with an odd gaze. "Don't you?"

Ellenweorc Estum: "I mean, if they had something to lose, then I would understand, like money, woman, and worth. But after this, it is the end."

Ravyn: "Is that all that is important to you, Ellenweorc?" It cocks it's head slightly to the side. "And why, pray tell, would you think they would want to give up what they have, merely because it is destined to be?" On the field, Odin recoils, as Fenrir rakes across his chest, opening a nasty gash.

Ravyn -> Ravyn: 6,4,7,3,8,

Ellenweorc Estum: "Those things arn't so important to me, but I would hate to lose anything. But what do they have to lose? Why don't they give it their all, one last time."

Ravyn: The first one speaks, still watching the battle. "Fear, Ellenweorc. Fear is an irrational thing. It has crippled them...it prevents them from fighting like the heroes they are."

Ellenweorc Estum: He takes a deep breath, struggling to understand something. "Fear. They don't have a choice! That's a horrible thing. Maybe they should be fighting fate instead. Or maybe that is what they are fighting right now, and the reason they should trying." He watches them out on the battlefield.

Ravyn: "Choice rarely matters. This is the struggle they must have. It is the struggle of every hero. Accept your fate, and risk dying, or even face certain death...or do not." He gives the raveny equivalent of a shrug.

Ellenweorc Estum: He eyes up the raven, "You're very nonchalant about the end, arn't you? Are you saying that choice doesn't matter? Be a hero, or not. In the end, you're still dead."

Ravyn: "Did I say that?" He looks at Ellenweorc with unblinking eyes.

Ellenweorc Estum: He scratches the back of his head, "Not exactly. I substituted rarely with a logical never, so it's not completely accurate..." His voice trails off, and then he resumes on a different train of thought. "What if they defeat the monsters without dying themselves?" He looks up at the bird with a glimmer of hope.

Ravyn: "That will not happen...you know this." He regards Ellen a moment. "What will happen on the field, will happen. That is not the struggle to be won."

Ellenweorc Estum: Damn it! No hope. "So what is the stuggle?"

Ellenweorc Estum: (struggle*)

Ravyn: The raven looks back to the field, and sighs. "I believe you will have the opportunity to find out." On the field, Odin falls, struck from behind by one of the fire giants from Muspelheim. Thor know finds himself fighting two foes, Fenrir and Jorgamund.

Ellenweorc Estum: He starts to get a little worried, "Oh hell, that was not supposed to happen."

Ravyn: "Someone must fight in his place," one of them observes. The other nods. "Indeed."

Ellenweorc Estum: He starts to breath hard, a little bit of a grin, and panicked eyes. This is not how it's supposed to happen! He draws runes in the air, making to move himself to where Odin fell.

Ravyn: ((Roll it. *S*))

Ellenweorc Estum: 9,4,10,10,8,8,8,

Ellenweorc Estum: 8,1,5,

Ellenweorc Estum: 2,10,8,

Ellenweorc Estum: 4,1,2,

Ravyn: ((Good thing Magic is Coincidental here. *S*))

Ravyn: Ellenweorc finds him teleporting to where Odin was. As he arrives, he's surprised to find Odin not there, and himself in Odin's armor, the great spear Gungnir in his hand. In front of him, the giant form of Fenrir snarls, getting ready to snap at him.

Ellenweorc Estum: HOLY HELL! He brings the spear in front of him like he has read, defensively.

Ravyn: The wolf snaps it's jaws, but stays back for now, out of the reach of the jaws. There is something oddly familiar in the wolf's eyes...something bright and quite mad. They seem...almond-shaped. Not very wolf-like at all.

Ellenweorc Estum: "Wolf, you fucked up. You were suppose to die too!" Trav will leap forward, and is going to drive the spear right into it's neck.

Ravyn: It seems almost surprised when Ellenweorc leaps forward, and that surprise gives it a moment's hesitation before it dodges, allowing the Hermetic to get a decent shot into the shoulder. Not the next, but close. Fur is gnarled off by the spear, and underneath is bare skin, a yellow tan in color. It snaps back, clenching down on Ellen's shoulder painfully, ripping flesh, though not incpacitating the limp.

Ravyn: ((limb))

Ravyn: He back up, looking at it's shoulder, then to Ellenweorc's, his jaw pulsing, that strangely familiar madness flashing in his eyes.

Ellenweorc Estum: He screams, at the pain and at the wolf, and grabs the spear far up the shaft so that he has distance from the beast, and is going to stick it in it's neck again.

Ravyn: As Ellen goes to stick again, it's ready this time, and it rotates, mouth opening wide as it roars and surges forward, ready to bite down and swallow him whole.

Ellenweorc Estum: He'll bring the spear in close and try to block the wolf from getting it's mouth around him.

Ravyn: He's able to block the enormous jaws, though the wolf is canny enough to avoid getting harmed by the spear as well. It circles around, snarling at him banefully.

Ellenweorc Estum: Ellenweorc starts to circle around the wolf as well, whispering to himself so that his arm fixes itself.

Ravyn: He finds, as his arm heals, that the wound on Fenris does as well. The giant wolf gives a sound, almost like a snicker.

Ellenweorc Estum: "I see. And I bet it's one way too." He twists the spear in his hands, and adjusts his grip. "If you don't die, the world will be taken back to chaos, but if I kill you, then I die too."

Ravyn: Fenrir's lip curl, and he growls menacingly, continuing his circle around Ellenweorc.

Ellenweorc Estum: What is this, sacrifice? You're giving yourself for the world. You're screwed. Oh, you really fuc... The voice fades into the background and disappears. Then he smirks madly to himself, remembering his favorite phrase, and murmurs, "So be it." He charges at the wolf, lifting the spear high with two hands.

Ravyn: Fenrir roars, in a distinctly Xu-sounding voice, and it's jaws shoot wide open, swallowing Ellenweorc even as Gungnir pierces deep into his throat. Extreme pain for an instant, and everything goes black.

Ravyn: When light dawns again, Ellenweorc finds himself inside an enormous hall, five hundred and forty doors, walls made of spears, a roof made of shields and benches covered with breastplates. He sits at the head of the table, with the two ravens sitting on the armrests on each side of the chair. They look up at him approvingly.

Ellenweorc Estum: He glances back and forth between them, waiting for something.

Ellenweorc Estum: He looks down the length of the table.

Ravyn: "So, Ellenweorc. What was the struggle?" The more thoughtful-looking one looks up at him.

Ellenweorc Estum: He murmurs, "I had to give everything up. I had to give up my fear."

Ravyn: The room is empty...just the three of them. He feels a fatherly presence looking over him, though. It seems quite satisfied.

Ravyn: "And you did." The raven nods. "Well done, Ellenweorc. You did Odin proud."

Ellenweorc Estum: He smiles proudly, and his eyes are laughing.

Ravyn: And the scene slowly melts away, as he regains consciousness.