History Literature / Xenos

25th Aug '17 6:25:52 PM nombretomado
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The series concerns Vladislav "Vlad" Istrin, who is shown at a very low point in his life. Vlad looks at the only item reminding him of his former life, a combat knife, contemplates suicide, then decides against it and opts for [[UsefulNotes/AlcoholismAndAlcoholAbuse drinking his worries away again]]. He blacks out and comes to it in a strange church, watched by [[MedievalEuropeanFantasy warriors in heavy armor]]. Vlad first thinks of a very elaborate prank, since some of [[TheNewRussia his rich and influential friends]] would have the resources to pull it off, but then gives it up upon seeing [[MagicalLand two moons in the night sky]].

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The series concerns Vladislav "Vlad" Istrin, who is shown at a very low point in his life. Vlad looks at the only item reminding him of his former life, a combat knife, contemplates suicide, then decides against it and opts for [[UsefulNotes/AlcoholismAndAlcoholAbuse drinking his worries away again]]. He blacks out and comes to it in a strange church, watched by [[MedievalEuropeanFantasy warriors in heavy armor]]. Vlad first thinks of a very elaborate prank, since some of [[TheNewRussia [[UsefulNotes/TheNewRussia his rich and influential friends]] would have the resources to pull it off, but then gives it up upon seeing [[MagicalLand two moons in the night sky]].



** After the battle in the Red Caves Vlad begins plotting an indirect attack on the Merchants' Guild of the Krays Island and on the Order of Sunset, a prominent organization of mercenary mages. Since these groups rely on financial power and magical skill, Vlad plans a magical and financial operation. [[note]]Vlad's plans include breaking the forgery protection spell of payment certificates as issued by the Merchants' Guild of Krays and enchanted by the Order of Sunset; producing a large amount of forged certificates and turning forged certificates to cash at the Merchants' Guild and at several notable banks, one of which is in on the operation; then waiting for the banks to declare certificate security compromised and to stop accepting certificates; then buying real certificates under value; then having the allied bank issue a security patch and declare all older certificates still safe unless issued by Merchants' Guild of Krays or by Order of Sunset; then quietly compensating the losses suffered by the allied bank; then watching the banks, the Merchants' Guild and the Order of Sunset fight each other. While those few privy to the plans are awestruck, Vlad notes that by standards of TheNewRussia this is a fairly straightforward technique.[[/note]]

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** After the battle in the Red Caves Vlad begins plotting an indirect attack on the Merchants' Guild of the Krays Island and on the Order of Sunset, a prominent organization of mercenary mages. Since these groups rely on financial power and magical skill, Vlad plans a magical and financial operation. [[note]]Vlad's plans include breaking the forgery protection spell of payment certificates as issued by the Merchants' Guild of Krays and enchanted by the Order of Sunset; producing a large amount of forged certificates and turning forged certificates to cash at the Merchants' Guild and at several notable banks, one of which is in on the operation; then waiting for the banks to declare certificate security compromised and to stop accepting certificates; then buying real certificates under value; then having the allied bank issue a security patch and declare all older certificates still safe unless issued by Merchants' Guild of Krays or by Order of Sunset; then quietly compensating the losses suffered by the allied bank; then watching the banks, the Merchants' Guild and the Order of Sunset fight each other. While those few privy to the plans are awestruck, Vlad notes that by standards of TheNewRussia UsefulNotes/TheNewRussia this is a fairly straightforward technique.[[/note]]
11th Aug '17 11:20:16 AM Gregzilla
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* TheHunter: Hunters' Guild, Rangers' Guild, Chasseurs of the Dragons' Ridge. Motivations among members of these organizations vary:

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* TheHunter: HunterOfMonsters: Hunters' Guild, Rangers' Guild, Chasseurs of the Dragons' Ridge. Motivations among members of these organizations vary:
12th Mar '17 3:33:27 PM Xtifr
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Xenos (Чужак) is a fantasy novel series by Igor' Dravin (Игорь Дравин), containing 10 novels as of late 2013.

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Xenos (Чужак) ''Xenos'' (''Чужак'') is a fantasy novel series by Igor' Dravin (Игорь Дравин), containing 10 novels as of late 2013.



* TheStrategist: Baron Igar el Tars, supreme commander-in-chief of Dekara. Vlad nicknames him [[UsefulNotes/AlexanderTheGreat Macedon]] [[Creator/GaiusJuliusCaesar son of Caesar]] [[UsefulNotes/GenghisKhan of the Genghis clan]], later just "Macedon". Baron el Tars, unwilling to deal with the DeadlyDecadentCourt under Queen Al'sa, retired to his barony. He returned to lead the loyalists during the civil war in Dekara and won the decisive battle on the Field of Vengeance while outnumbered 2 to 1. Before the battle, another baron describes Igar el Tars as: "He has not commanded dozens of battles, just seven. He has always been vastly outnumbered, but never defeated."

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* TheStrategist: Baron Igar el Tars, supreme commander-in-chief of Dekara. Vlad nicknames him [[UsefulNotes/AlexanderTheGreat Macedon]] [[Creator/GaiusJuliusCaesar [[UsefulNotes/JuliusCaesar son of Caesar]] [[UsefulNotes/GenghisKhan of the Genghis clan]], later just "Macedon". Baron el Tars, unwilling to deal with the DeadlyDecadentCourt under Queen Al'sa, retired to his barony. He returned to lead the loyalists during the civil war in Dekara and won the decisive battle on the Field of Vengeance while outnumbered 2 to 1. Before the battle, another baron describes Igar el Tars as: "He has not commanded dozens of battles, just seven. He has always been vastly outnumbered, but never defeated."
14th May '16 4:32:05 PM nombretomado
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* KnightFever: Arland's nobility technically goes in tiers, but actual levels of prosperity and power are rather loosely related to the title. The Church and both Hunters and Rangers generally ignore inherited titles, though.
** Vlad in his role as baron el Stoka becomes involved in the baron el Ronst's attempt to absorb the Stoka barony and adjacent unclaimed lands to have the barony elevated to a county.
** Vlad later suggests the unification of the northern Borderland baronies into a new county, which obviously requires the agreement of the barons, but also the acknowledgement of the new entity by at least three kingdoms.
16th Mar '16 8:44:17 AM ObsidianFire
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* DragonWithAnAgenda: Prince Kriy of Baros to the Fallen. Kriy is the priest-king of the ReligionOfEvil and is supposed to work solely to advance the Fallen's return. All the while, Kriy was observed consolidating his personal power. His emissaries have offered stand-alone Dark lodges the choice between submission to Kriy and destruction. At a guess, Kriy is well aware of both his and the world's fate in the case of said return of the Fallen and would likely prefer the current status quo. [[spoiler: In a conversation with Vlad, Kriy admits beings a fellow Xenos. Kriy left the USSR sometimes during Stalin's reign and thus entered Arland some 600 years ago. Kriy was likely a communist who supported Stalin before Stalin decimated the old communists. Hence Kriy's hesitation to usher his own demise by invoking the second coming of the BigBad is understandably GenreSavvy.]]

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* DragonWithAnAgenda: Prince Kriy of Baros to the Fallen. Kriy is the priest-king of the ReligionOfEvil and is supposed to work solely to advance the Fallen's return. All the while, Kriy was observed consolidating his personal power. His emissaries have offered stand-alone Dark lodges the choice between submission to Kriy and destruction. At a guess, Kriy is well aware of both his and the world's fate in the case of said return of the Fallen and would likely prefer the current status quo. [[spoiler: In a conversation with Vlad, Kriy admits beings a fellow Xenos. Kriy left the USSR sometimes during Stalin's reign and thus entered Arland some 600 years ago. Kriy was likely a communist who supported Stalin before Stalin decimated the old communists. Hence Kriy's hesitation to usher his own demise by invoking the second coming of the BigBad is understandably GenreSavvy.smart.]]



** Solved in the kingdom of Dekara by a HiddenBackupPrince - the loyal courtiers were GenreSavvy and faked his death years ago.

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** Solved in the kingdom of Dekara by a HiddenBackupPrince - the loyal courtiers were GenreSavvy smart and faked his death years ago.
15th Feb '16 7:27:24 AM MacronNotes
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* LikeAFishTakesToWater: due to YearInsideHourOutside, the Xenos from Earth are rather spread in time on Arland, but seem to rarely become mundane citizens.

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* LikeAFishTakesToWater: LikeADuckTakesToWater: due to YearInsideHourOutside, the Xenos from Earth are rather spread in time on Arland, but seem to rarely become mundane citizens.
15th Feb '16 7:27:18 AM MacronNotes
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* LikeAFishTakesToWater: due to YearInsideHourOutside, the Xenos from Earth are rather spread in time on Arland, but seem to rarely become mundane citizens.

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* LikeAFishTakesToWater: LikeADuckTakesToWater: due to YearInsideHourOutside, the Xenos from Earth are rather spread in time on Arland, but seem to rarely become mundane citizens.
17th Oct '15 7:14:07 PM nombretomado
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** An interlude shows a conversation between two clerics addressing each other as "Es" and "Nir", most likely [[spoiler: Father Estor and the current [[ThePope Maker's Deputy]] ]]. They are discussing the phenomenon of people cropping up in the "blighted spots", which has been happening for several centuries and is well-known enough to have contributed the word "derg", meaning "alien", to the CommonTongue. The Church has often taken interest in these "aliens", [[spoiler: with Vlad's release "into the wild" with the bare minimum of information and no further training being an exception]].

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** An interlude shows a conversation between two clerics addressing each other as "Es" and "Nir", most likely [[spoiler: Father Estor and the current [[ThePope [[UsefulNotes/ThePope Maker's Deputy]] ]]. They are discussing the phenomenon of people cropping up in the "blighted spots", which has been happening for several centuries and is well-known enough to have contributed the word "derg", meaning "alien", to the CommonTongue. The Church has often taken interest in these "aliens", [[spoiler: with Vlad's release "into the wild" with the bare minimum of information and no further training being an exception]].
13th Jul '15 10:28:30 AM jlt314
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* DemBones: Decayed corpses taken by the power of the Fallen may rise as weak undead, commonly known as skeletons. Their power varies with the level of taint around them. Old skeletons evolve into skeleton warriors. Various servants of the Fallen can turn warriors into skeleton knights, increasing speed, strength and martial skill and granting them basic magic skills. Skeleton knights evolve into skeleton mages after killing a certain amount of sentients, gaining taint-amplified basic spells, but loosing melee skills. A skeleton mage can be turned into a skeleton Lord. Skeleton Lords are strong mages providing local control for lower ranked skeletons, vastly increasing the combat potential of skeleton units.

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* DemBones: Decayed corpses taken by the power of the Fallen may rise as weak undead, commonly known as skeletons. Their power varies with the level of taint around them. Old skeletons evolve into skeleton warriors. Various servants of the Fallen can turn warriors into skeleton knights, increasing speed, strength and martial skill and granting them basic magic skills. Skeleton knights evolve into skeleton mages after killing a certain amount of sentients, sapients, gaining taint-amplified basic spells, but loosing melee skills. A skeleton mage can be turned into a skeleton Lord. Skeleton Lords are strong mages providing local control for lower ranked skeletons, vastly increasing the combat potential of skeleton units.



** Desert of Mirrors: The habitable lands were literally burned off the map during the Interregnum and the bedrock was glassed to give the area the new name. Because of erosion, the area became a (technically passable) sandy desert. It's highly hostile due to climate, water shortage and magical fallout. The later caused the restless souls of the previous inhabitants to become Sand Spirits, partially corporeal sapient undead predators who now prey on all sapient life to enter their habitats.

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** Desert of Mirrors: The habitable lands were literally burned off the map during the Interregnum and the bedrock was glassed to give the area the new name. Because of erosion, the area became a (technically passable) sandy desert. It's highly hostile due to climate, water shortage and magical fallout. The later caused the restless souls of the previous inhabitants to become Sand Spirits, partially corporeal sapient undead predators who now prey on all sapient life to sapients who enter their habitats.



# Keeping the very simple technology secret, which alone would cause a competent intelligence agent to grow gray hairs;

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# Keeping the very simple technology secret, which alone would cause a competent intelligence agent to grow gray hairs;hair;



* MoralityKitchenSink: With the Maker and the Destroyer at the opposite ends of the scale, the sentients of Arland represent the full variety of morals.

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* MoralityKitchenSink: With the Maker and the Destroyer at the opposite ends of the scale, the sentients and sapients of Arland represent the full variety of morals.



* NonMaliciousMonster: the Kraken. According to Vlad's experience after empathic contact, the Kraken is sentient, but not sapient, and his initial aggression resulted from the original summoning and the failed control rituals.

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* NonMaliciousMonster: the Kraken. According to Vlad's experience after empathic contact, the Kraken is sentient, but not truly sapient, and his initial aggression resulted from the original summoning and the failed control rituals.



* OurGryphonsAreDifferent: Gryphons are likely a creation of the Chimera school, one of the least known schools of magic. Their sole known nesting grounds are in the Karosa kingdom. Gryphons are smart, possibly borderline sentient, and are tamed by the military, making Karosa the only kingdom with a functioning air force. An adult gryphon can comfortably carry a basket or a net with several passengers or a load of cargo. Vlad compares a gryphon flock guarded by several dragons to a cargo helicopter squadron with an escort of gunships. Vlad's drake Fuzz merely considers them a hard-to-catch delicacy.

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* OurGryphonsAreDifferent: Gryphons are likely a creation of the Chimera school, one of the least known schools of magic. Their sole known nesting grounds are in the Karosa kingdom. Gryphons are smart, sentient, possibly borderline sentient, sapient, and are tamed by the military, making Karosa the only kingdom with a functioning air force. An adult gryphon can comfortably carry a basket or a net with several passengers or a load of cargo. Vlad compares a gryphon flock guarded by several dragons to a cargo helicopter squadron with an escort of gunships. Vlad's drake Fuzz merely considers them a hard-to-catch delicacy.



* PsychicRadar: the Mind school has spells and wards to detect sentients. Life, Blood and Water mages can use related spells to detect living beings in general, and Death and Necromancy mages can detect TheUndead.

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* PsychicRadar: the Mind school has spells and wards to detect sentients.sapients. Life, Blood and Water mages can use related spells to detect living beings in general, and Death and Necromancy mages can detect TheUndead.



* RoaringRampageOfRescue: the kidnapping of the She-Wolves (an all-girl Hunter team) and Dunya for the Catacomb Lords' procreation ritual triggers this for the entire city of Belgor. In most cases, Hunters would try to find and MercyKill the women. After an almost suicidal distraction by the Hunters' Guild, Vlad leads a crack team of Hunters into the Blighted Catacombs. They find the lair of the Catacomb Lords, destroy the guards, kill the vulnerable Lords and save the women.

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* RoaringRampageOfRescue: the RoaringRampageOfRescue:
** The
kidnapping of the She-Wolves (an all-girl Hunter team) and Dunya for the Catacomb Lords' procreation ritual triggers this for the entire city of Belgor. In most cases, Hunters would try to find and MercyKill the women. After an almost suicidal distraction by the Hunters' Guild, Vlad leads a crack team of Hunters into the Blighted Catacombs. They find the lair of the Catacomb Lords, destroy the guards, kill the vulnerable Lords and save the women.women.
** Vlad's undercover mission in the Red Caves ends with a free-for-all chaotic battle where Vlad's party manages to save the slaves and prevent a massive demon summoning.



** After exiting the Blighted Catacombs, Vlad's team rides for Belgor to allow Bishop Aner to exorcise the rescued women and save their lives permanently. The Hunters are intercepted by father Sanr, a [[KnightTemplar fanatic Maker's Servant (a member of Arland's inquisition)]], accompanied by Servant guards and several Maker's Hands (paladins). The Servant incapacitates the Hunters within a clerical barrier spell and orders the women executed by piercing their hearts and beheading them, their tainted corpses exorcised and burned on the spot. Vlad unleashes a power he isn't supposed to have and proceeds to break the barrier, slaughter the Servant guards and the Hands and finally kill the inquisitor.
** A successful rebellion in the Litiya kingdom almost destroyed the dynasty. Loviya, the queen of Litiya, lost her husband and all their children, but saved her toddler grandson. She then took command of loyal forces and reclaimed the throne. Upon reclaiming the capital, Loviya had all the captured noble rebels executed one after another on the exact date of their rebellion.

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** After exiting the Blighted Catacombs, Vlad's team rides for Belgor to allow Bishop Aner to exorcise the rescued women and save their lives permanently. The Hunters are intercepted by father Sanr, a [[KnightTemplar fanatic Maker's Servant (a member of Arland's inquisition)]], accompanied by Servant guards and several Maker's Hands (paladins). The Servant incapacitates the Hunters within a clerical barrier spell and orders the women executed by piercing their hearts and beheading them, their tainted corpses exorcised and burned on the spot. This makes Vlad unleashes a power he isn't supposed to have snap and proceeds to break the barrier, barrier spell, then slaughter the Servant guards and the Hands and finally kill the inquisitor.
inquisitor. [[spoiler: Vlad had descended into the Ice Overlord state and manifested their trademark Ice Blades on his swords. ]]
** A successful rebellion in the Litiya kingdom almost destroyed the dynasty. Loviya, the queen of Litiya, lost her husband and all their children, but saved her toddler 5-year-old grandson. She then took command of loyal forces and reclaimed the throne. Upon reclaiming the capital, Loviya had all the captured noble rebels executed one after another on the exact date of their rebellion.



* SealedBadassInACan: The Chain of Elements houses 4 captive primary elementals, allowing the wielder to use Lord tier magic of Earth, Fire, Air and Water within the limits of mana available. Said captive elementals have been imprisoned in the Chain for the last two millenia with an unexpected side effect: interacting with the Chain's wielders and other sentients slowly enhanced them from nigh-feral common elementals to fully sentient beings. The elementals befriend Vlad and enjoy his company, further adavncing in sentience. While now able to break free of the Chain and to return to their respective elements' dimensions, the elementals unanimously decided to stay.

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* SealedBadassInACan: The Chain of Elements houses 4 captive primary elementals, allowing the wielder to use Lord tier magic of Earth, Fire, Air and Water within the limits of mana available. Said captive elementals have been imprisoned in the Chain for the last two millenia with an unexpected side effect: interacting with the Chain's wielders and other sentients sapients slowly enhanced elevated them from nigh-feral common elementals to fully sentient sapient beings. The elementals befriend Vlad and enjoy his company, further adavncing advancing in sentience. While now able to break free of the Chain and to return to their respective elements' dimensions, the elementals unanimously decided to stay.



* ToServeMan: Goblins and trolls commonly consume the meat of other sentients. Dark lodges use the consumption of sentients as a test of loyalty.
* SesquipedalianLoquaciousness: After Vlad rescued Gil "Goody" and Kolar er Kilam from the Blight, he asks them about Ruv, the Dark mage who took them captive. Kolar breaks into a paragraph of {{Magibabble}} exposition, which Gil sums up as: "If Ruv entered the Blighted Catacombs with active magical shields, he'd attract creatures not forbidden by their Lords from attacking him. Ruv wasn't important enough to be granted safe passage by all Lords, just given a single safe route. So Ruv had no shields up, and was to slow to cast them as you attacked."

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* ToServeMan: Goblins and trolls commonly consume the meat of other sentients. sapients. Dark lodges use the consumption of sentients sapients as a test of loyalty.
* SesquipedalianLoquaciousness: After Vlad rescued Gil "Goody" and Kolar er Kilam from the Blight, he asks them about Ruv, the Dark mage who took them captive. Kolar breaks into a paragraph of {{Magibabble}} exposition, which Gil sums up as: "If Ruv entered the Blighted Catacombs with active magical shields, he'd attract creatures not forbidden by their Lords from attacking him. Ruv wasn't important enough to be granted safe passage by all Lords, just given a single safe route. So Ruv had no shields up, and was to too slow to cast them as you attacked."



** Blood requirement: Vampires can feed sparingly, don't have to kill, don't have to drain large amounts of blood from victim. Vampires need the blood of sentients, but can live on stored blood. Overall friendly.

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** Blood requirement: Vampires can feed sparingly, don't have to kill, don't have to drain large amounts of blood from victim. Vampires need the blood of sentients, sapients, but can live on stored blood. Overall friendly.



** Conversion: Impossible. Vampires are a separate humanoid sentient species who just happen to look like fanged humans. Innate magic of the clans allows to adopt humans as clan members, sharing some abilities with them. Overall friendly.

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** Conversion: Impossible. Vampires are a separate humanoid sentient sapient species who just happen to look like fanged humans. Innate magic of the clans allows to adopt humans as clan members, sharing some abilities with them. Overall friendly.



** Mages can directly infuse a blade with raw mana of an element, allowing the blade to damage magical shields and do elemental damage on contact. Rarely used, but almost a trademark of the Gray Order's high vampires during hit-and-run assassinations. Vlad advises an allied high vampires regarding the use of his species' innate superspeed bursts to profit from this technique when fighting mages: "You can strike the mage's shield six times while he's casting something; it's okay for the fifth hit to crack the shielding spell and the sixth hit to crack the mage's skull." This technique rapidly deteriorates the metal, though.

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** Mages can directly infuse a blade with raw mana of an element, allowing the blade to damage magical shields and do elemental damage on contact. Rarely used, but almost a trademark of the Gray Order's high vampires during hit-and-run assassinations. Vlad advises an allied high vampires regarding the use of his their species' innate superspeed bursts to profit from this technique when fighting mages: "You can strike the mage's shield mage six times while he's casting something; it's okay for the fifth hit to crack the mage's shielding spell and the sixth hit to crack the mage's skull." This technique rapidly deteriorates the metal, though.
20th Apr '15 4:37:51 AM jormis29
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* AnthropomorphicPersonification: Death personally visits the Stoka castle to inform Vlad about the fallout of his mission in Tariya. She manifests as a red-headed teenager girl and introduces herself as [[NorseMythology Hel]].

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* AnthropomorphicPersonification: Death personally visits the Stoka castle to inform Vlad about the fallout of his mission in Tariya. She manifests as a red-headed teenager girl and introduces herself as [[NorseMythology [[Myth/NorseMythology Hel]].



* DontFearTheReaper: as Death visits the Stoka castle, she does so to inform Vlad that the results of his mission in Tariya caused some entity to break the "Covenant" in an attempt at his life. Death negates the attack and the immediate second attack against Vlad and does something apparently lethal to the attackers. Then she informs Vlad that while there's a place reserved for him in [[NorseMythology Niflheim]], she will only accept Vlad's death by the rules and is rather keen to see his story unfold.

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* DontFearTheReaper: as Death visits the Stoka castle, she does so to inform Vlad that the results of his mission in Tariya caused some entity to break the "Covenant" in an attempt at his life. Death negates the attack and the immediate second attack against Vlad and does something apparently lethal to the attackers. Then she informs Vlad that while there's a place reserved for him in [[NorseMythology [[Myth/NorseMythology Niflheim]], she will only accept Vlad's death by the rules and is rather keen to see his story unfold.
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