Friday, May 29, 2015

Page 1035

Naturally, the Vanguard could not simply go around massacring people. Which was why Abolish’s involvement was necessary. Disgusting scum though they were, they still had their uses, and Parson knew how to handle them. That was why Artemis had promoted him in the first place, after all.

But Zeff, Joana, and Axiolis survived. Artemis considered that a problem, especially with the Rainlords on high alert. Worse still, the survivors were able to identify the Abolishers contracted for the job. That, in turn, meant that there was a chance--a very, very slim chance, but still a chance--that the Rainlords would’ve been able to discover who those Abolishers worked for. Parson had been careful, so the Rainlords still would’ve had a rather long and winding road to the truth ahead of them, but Artemis wasn’t one for loose ends.

And hilariously, that very tendency proved to be Artemis’ downfall. The air marshal went to extinguish the Abolishers they’d used, but the Monster was already there, killing them all and mounting their heads on spikes. And when the Monster sensed Artemis’ presence in that place, that was it. A death sentence. Artemis escaped, sure, but it hardly mattered. Over the next three years, Gohvis hunted him down.

All the while, Parson was profoundly glad that he’d only ever used Artemis’ name when dealing with Abolish. If he’d allowed himself to be identified even once, then the Monster probably would’ve hunted him down, too.

Now, there was no one else left who knew the truth of that story. Only Parson and Overra.

But it had been enough. A glimpse of the Monster’s lingering humanity. Surely, that demanded further investigation. So over the next several years, that was exactly what Parson did. And during that time, Zeff Elroy resurfaced, wishing to rejoin the Vanguard.

Parson could not have been more pleased.

22 comments:

  1. Been so long, I forgot how to do these properly...

    "they still had their uses, and Parson knew how to." I think this sentence needs a few more words. Perhaps, "they still had their uses, and Parson knew how to do so."?

    "If he’d allowed himself to identified even once," Needs a 'be' after 'iidentified' there

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  2. Nicolas Sagrillo de AraujoMay 29, 2015 at 12:37 PM

    I'm guessing that having his whole family slaughtered would suffice to make Gohvis do what he did. srsly though, If i ever write a TZK FF it'll be about Gohvis.

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  3. Goddamn, frosty this story stays top notch :) thank you for keeping it interesting

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  4. Okay... I think this page has just reached the point of "If I had to chose between them and the evil guys, I would go with a smile and join the evil guys." At least Abolish comes across as some kind of honest. "We want to kill you all, got it? Yes? Great!"
    And seriously, is it just me or has Abolish been a bit more loyal to its own people than these guys of Vanguard?

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  5. Yick. >_< Sometimes, wheels within wheels just means "yick". :P

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  6. Typo:
    "Now, there was no [one] else left who knew the truth of that story."

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  7. Disgusting scum [though] they were?
    promoted him [on] in the first place

    And yeah, that is hilariously karmic.

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  8. Got 'em, thank you. Though, the first one isn't necessarily an error, I do like the use of "though" better there.

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  9. Well in fairness it did say that Parson had been using the name of a Vanguard leader to broker deals with them, and they still helped with his dirty work. I'd say that that says bad things about their loyalty. Also, I think that having two factions with such distinct styles helps them, since they don't have to worry about leadership that doesn't suit them, they just choose the faction that does. Besides, I would guess that Dozers are too pragmatic to punish deserters who still kill innocents, and Morgunovs don't complain about anyone who knows how to party, while the Vanguard is absurdly paranoid about letting anyone go who was a member, even if they only want to protect innocents and kick Abolishers in the face but don't like how the company is organized.

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  10. Remember, he is considered the equal to Jackson. Which means, ignoring any other powerhouses on Sai Hee's side, he is at least the sixth most powerful servant on Eleg.

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  11. When I had put down the Salazar for cowardice, we *just* seen Harper in action. We knew nothing of the global rankings, save for the Emperors being at the top. Hell, it wasn't til Melchor came onto the scene that I started thinking my understanding "power" was lacking. And then Sanko completely blew even that new understanding to smithereens.

    TL;DR: You can't expect me to have kept in my mind something that wasn't even shown at the time I made my disparaging comments

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  12. Just submitted this to the /r/rational subreddit! Hopefully you'll get some new readers from there soon!

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  13. Right. I forgot we hadn't seen any real heavyweights until the fight with Melchor, which came after.

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  14. woohooo i caught up!!! awesome story, love every single bit.

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  15. Well, they did kill Stoker for deserting, so the Dozers might not be too happy about deserters either. But maybe that was just Karkash doing his own thing.


    Another point about loyality: I think it was mentioned that Desmond and Ezmortig keep a secret money stash and have hopes of leaving Abolish at some point to do their own thing.

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  16. What I meant was, we have no proof that they object to people deciding that they would better serve the goals they signed up to serve by leaving and working on their own. Stoker was going to desert at best and defect at worst, which would be especially bad since his power would be so absurdly terrifying at pan-rozum levels (one gesture to instakill any servant, even if their reaper is nowhere to be found).

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  17. Oh, I see what you mean. No idea about Abolish, but the Vanguard has shown in the past with Harper that they are willing to let their members "freelance" a bit. Probably not true anymore though.

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  18. He is still within the organization, and sort of within the power structure. Having a bit of autonomy when it comes to what he does in his free time is very different from being allowed to leave at all, even on friendly terms.

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  19. I've been reading Wikipedia's General Officer page, and I'm confused about the ranks here. Was Artemis an Air Marshal, equivalent to an army Lt. General like Harper, or a Marshal of the Air Force, equivalent to a Field Marshal like Sanko? Or did the Vanguard decide that Air Marshal is the same rank as Field Marshal?

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  20. The Vanguard has its own ranking system, like most militaries do.

    For quick reference, all "Marshals" are considered equal in ranking.

    Air Marshal and Field Marshal (and the yet-to-be-revealed title for the naval forces) are equivalent in the authority they possess, the only difference being the types of troops they (usually) command.

    The Lt. General ranking is unique the ground forces (under the Field Marshals), but the air and naval forces also possess the other two "general" ranks, General and Cpt. General.

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