There were a lot of things she was confused about. The last thing she remembered was bringing her blade down through Cassiopeia’s chest and then the world had gone black. Upon waking up, this woman had been about to interrogate her before Vlad and a blind monk came bursting in. They quickly turned the tables on the so-called Duchess and she revealed that she had been working with Talon. Despite this whirlwind turn of events, Riven was only bothered by one thing. When the duchess told them she was going to step down, she wore an expression that was just… wrong.
Riven couldn’t come up with another way to describe it other than the shame in her voice didn’t match the look in her eyes. They finished interrogating her and Vlad had the other two women in the room take the Duchess to the prison. He turned to the blind monk and told him to go round up the guards and see if they could explain what had happened. She was impressed with how well he was taking charge and the ease with which he was leading.
Finally, he turned towards her and broke into a wide smile. “Riven, it’s good to see you.” She stood up for the first time and walked over to him, hugging him closely and said, “It’s good to see you too. What on earth happened?” Vlad laughed and told her a quick synopsis of how the two of them had ended up in Ionia and Riven was amazed. “Why didn’t you just leave me? I was as good as dead and all you did was risk your own life.”
Vlad’s look was reproachful and he said, “If I left my first real friend to die, I don’t think I’d be a very popular man.” Riven laughed and suddenly realized, “My rune blade! Where is it?” Vlad said, “Ah, actually I was going to see if that might be something you wanted to do. I had to leave behind my armor and your blade when I ran into Singed at the inn south of here.” Riven’s face grew incredulous, “You ran into Zaunite Singed? What on earth is happening here in Ionia?”
Vlad’s face grew serious and he replied, “Too much to explain thoroughly, but the short version that you got from Karma is, Zaun is invading. I believe they’re winning as well, so we need to rally the people starting tonight.” Footfalls echoed down the corridor outside and Riven immediately tensed herself for a fight. She saw the monk peer his head around the door and relaxed a bit until she saw his expression. “Vlad, we’ve got news. Let’s get Irelia up here.”
Lee Sin took off down the hall and the two former Noxians followed him closely. They headed down towards the holding cells when they got to Irelia and Soraka. The two looked surprised and asked what the hurry was. Lee Sin looked grave and said, “Malthrir has fallen. Master Yi gave his life protecting the province, but shortly after his death it fell completely. They have a large foothold in our country now.” The five warriors stood there, contemplating.
Riven spoke up, “Well, I know I’ve been absent up ‘til now, but it sounds as though Talon is up to his old tricks. It just feels like he orchestrated this whole thing, even if Zaun is the one doing the heavy lifting.” The group nodded and Vlad said, “We need allies, plain and simple. If Noxus lends their backing to this, we don’t have enough to stop them from conquering us.”
Lee Sin spoke up, “Well, I do have a, um… Friend in Piltover.” He sounded slightly nervous and Riven thought about it, “I might have a contact there as well. Plus,” She paused and said, “…from there, I may be able to get Demacia on board to help.” The group looked impressed and Vlad said, “That’s right, Shyvana may be willing to help you.” He looked excited and the group seemed to exude optimism. “Well, there it is. Lee Sin and Riven will travel to Piltover. We need to tell them it’s urgent, and that Runeterra could very well fall if we don’t receive help.”
Riven laughed out loud and everyone looked straight at her. She paused briefly and said, “Well, it appears there’s no rest for the weary. Let’s go get us some allies.”
Don't read this unless you're Silly or have read Ch. 16 on his blog.
She had gone to sit next to him and he turned, looking into her eyes. “What do you think? I’m not even an Ionian, so I don’t know what to do.” Irelia looked into his eyes and said...
I thought this part could've flowed a little bit better.
For example. She sat down next to him and he looked into her eyes. "I'm not an Ionian, so I am unsure as to what to do." Irelia returned his gaze and said...
Also, I hope you fell better because being sick is horrible. Get well soon!
There ya go! Hope that helps .
Irelia watched Soraka leave the Placidium and stared after her for a long time. She was lost in thought about the coming events, and the future of Ionia. There had been so many things happening in such a short amount of time and she wasn’t quite sure what to make of all of it. Her leader had turned out to be incompetent and possibly corrupt. She was still uneasy about letting her make the address to the people tonight but Soraka had insisted she would be alright.
She had met new people and wasn’t quite sure what to make of them yet. Riven had seemed very self-assured and driven. She hadn’t been awake for half an hour when she began preparing to help Ionia. She had just found out that Lee Sin had been newly blinded, and although he didn’t say much, whenever he did speak he tended to cut to the heart of the matter.
Then there was Vladimir. She didn’t know what it was about him, but he was certainly special. He had become the de facto leader of the group naturally, and was impressive in his stature. Irelia didn’t know what she felt about the Crimson Reaper, but it was clear that the handsome man would play a major part in Ionia’s future.
Riven had left early that morning to go to the inn south of the capital city. She returned a few hours later sporting a broken rune blade and a suit of impressive looking armor. Vlad had donned it and Irelia had to admit, it made him look good. Shortly after that, Riven and Lee Sin had taken their leave, heading north to try to contact Piltover. Vladimir had decided that one of the remaining three should go marshal the forces holding off the invasion in the south. Soraka had volunteered to accompany the newly revived general Wukong and had just now set off.
Irelia sighed and came out of her reverie. She gave one last look at the beautiful vista the Placidium gave before heading back in. She went into the guest quarters and saw Vlad lying down, staring at the ceiling. When she came in, he sat up and looked over, smiling broadly. Irelia felt the blood rush to her face, but said “Hi there. So what’s the plan?”
He patted the bed next to him, indicating that she sit down before answering, “Honestly, I don’t know. I think we’re going to have to send someone northward shortly to help counter that side of the invasion.” She had gone to sit next to him and he turned, looking into her eyes. “What do you think? I’m not even an Ionian, so I don’t know what to do.” Irelia returned his gaze and said, “I believe we have to wait for Karma’s address tonight before making any real decisions.”
Vlad sighed and nodded. Irelia fidgeted for a moment before blurting out a question that had been on her mind for some time. “So what’s the deal with you and Riven?” Vlad looked taken aback, opened his mouth and closed it again. Then he laughed a little and said, “What do you mean? She’s my good friend, we bonded during our time in Noxus together. She’s also an excellent warrior and a great asset to have join our cause. Why do you ask?”
Irelia’s face grew slightly red, but she was pleased with his answer. “Just trying to figure out who we’re working with.” Vlad’s smile hinted that he knew what she was getting at, but he didn’t say anything about it, which Irelia appreciated. They sat there in a heavy silence for a few moments before Vlad said, “So what of your personal life? Anyone out there waiting for you to come home?” He said the remark offhandedly, but Irelia was pleased. “No, I’ve been too wrapped up in being Irelia, Will of the Blades. Irelia, Captain of the Guard.” The two laughed for a moment, comfortable in each other’s presence. “But really, those things left me no time for a personal life.”
Vlad opened his mouth to speak when the soldier who had brought news of Master Yi’s death came in. He saw the way the two were sitting and clearly felt uncomfortable about intruding. Vlad sighed but said, “How can I help you?” The soldier replied, “This message is for Captain Irelia. Just before Master Yi died, he told me that the Arrow of Retribution was our best hope. I don’t understand what it means, but when I saw you here, I knew I needed to pass along the message.” The soldier scurried out and Vlad gave her a strange look.
She explained before he could ask, “The Arrow of Retribution refers to a man who guarded a pit of corruption in Northern Ionia. It happened during the first Noxian invasion, when his family was killed because he refused to leave his post. Afterwards, when he found out, the man went wild with rage and gave himself to the dark forces in the pit. He slaughtered an entire battalion on Noxians and became known as the Arrow of Retribution.” Vladimir looked confused, “That’s all well and good, but why would we need him? He doesn’t sound like someone we can control, and would potentially be just as much of a liability.”
Irelia nodded and said, “I suppose it’s because of the cyborgs. If they can be literally corrupted by him, they might be able to be controlled. I really couldn’t tell you though, it seems like an odd choice. Plus…” She paused for a moment, trying to recall if she knew any information, “I wouldn’t know where to look for the Arrow. As far as I know, he disappeared after the Noxian invasion ended. Vlad looked troubled but just then they heard Karma’s amplified voice ring out through the air, addressing the city below.
“People of Ionia, it is I, Karma the Enlightened.” The two looked at each other and thought it was odd she had started without warning them. They got up and quickly made their way to the front of the Placidium. “Today, I have some truly heartbreaking news for you. Master Yi, longtime general and leader in the Ionian community, was struck down a few days ago in Malthrir. I’m sure you’ve all heard the rumors of a Zaunite invasion, and it would appear they are sadly true.”
She paused for dramatic effect, and Irelia couldn’t help feel something was terribly wrong with what was about to happen. “Nevertheless, we have survived invasions before, and we shall do so again. What we need now, more than ever, is to stand together. A united Ionia is the only way we will be able to weather this storm!” There were cheers from the city below. “Unfortunately, we have traitors in our midst. Irelia, Captain of the Guard, attempted to murder me earlier today.” Irelia turned to Vlad and said, “Our only hope is to run. She’s been a much beloved ruler, and the people will believe her over us.” He nodded and the two raced down the stairs of the Placidium.
“She has several accomplices, and has even managed to sway the beloved Starchild to her cause. This cannot stand if we are to defeat the invading armies, and as of now, I am offering a life time’s worth of riches to any man or woman who can bring me the head of our former captain.”
Irelia and Vlad continued on their way and made it through town quickly, leaving Karma’s voice far behind. As she ran, her only feeling was a desperate sadness that she had just been ostracized by her own people. She resolved now more than ever to redeem herself by saving her country.
Their journey had been uneventful so far. The duo had managed to reach the west coast of Ionia with ease, and stowing away on a cargo ship was not difficult. During their journey, the two travelers had gotten to know each other, and Lee Sin was able to find out more about the Noxian power shift. From the sound of it, Riven held a grudging respect for the new leader Talon, despite his several betrayals. He seemed to be a very intelligent, powerful ruler with a true goal of domination. Given the Freljordian meltdown of late, Lee Sin felt confident that Noxus was in a position for global domination.
As the two spoke, Riven made it sound as though she had heard the Demacian ideals from Shyvana, and was considering their merits. Lee Sin attempted to tell her about the Ionian way, but she stated that peacetime was not her strongpoint. The two laughed and shared stories of their times with Vladimir, and Lee Sin quickly realized that the man he’d gotten to know had changed greatly in a short amount of time. Riven had a tendency to bring out the best in others, and she had certainly managed it with the Crimson Reaper.
After several days on the Guardian’s Sea, they arrived at the port in Piltover. Riven gasped next to him and he laughed. He remembered his first time seeing the city of Piltover, and it had taken his breath away. He remembered the city perched on a small mountain, buildings made of gleaming white marble. The Academy sat on the top of the mountain, seemingly in a precarious position. It had been built that way to impress visitors, and hopefully spark their thirst for knowledge.
Riven said, “Is that the academy? The contact I’m looking for should be working up there.” Lee Sin was listening, taking in all the sounds of the city, but said, “Yes, it is indeed. How would you like to go about our business here?” Riven was silent for a moment; thinking, Lee Sin assumed. “Well, I need to head to the Yordle academy, and you’ve obviously got some business you’d like to attend to.” Lee Sin had remained silent on the nature of his contact within the city. “I suppose that means let’s establish a meeting spot.”
The two agreed to meet each other at the front entrance to the Yordle academy in two days time, and went their separate ways. Lee Sin took a deep breath and braced himself. He had not seen this woman in a few years, and the last time he had, he’d still been a summoner in training. It had all changed when the accident happened. He had tried to push the boundaries of his newfound magic too fast, and it had caused a devastating accident which left a young boy dead.
He had never been able to forgive himself for the accident and had made the decision to change his life at that moment. He dropped out of summoner’s training, left behind the life he knew and dedicated his life to the Shojin monastery. The young woman he’d left behind had never even heard what happened, and he’d always regretted the way he handled it. Unfortunately, this was the first time he’d see her since then, and now he would be asking for a favor. He felt nervous to say the least.
He decided to start his search by heading to her parents’ house in the south end of the city. The journey was easy, and Lee was impressed with how well his body had adapted to being blinded. He was able to walk easily, letting his ears act almost as sonar for him, alerting him to the locations of everything around him. The sounds of the city were happy and energetic, and Lee Sin felt this was a place he would have been very happy settling in, were it not for his tragic accident years ago.
The Blind Monk arrived at the house after a short walk and hesitated for a moment, collecting himself before knocking. He felt like a sixteen year old boy again, and laughed inwardly at his loss of composure from the mere thought of the woman. Finally, he summoned his courage and knocked on the door. He only had to wait a moment before the door opened and he heard an elegant voice say, “Yes, how may I help you?”
Lee Sin smiled when he heard a gasp and then the voice said playfully, “I wondered when I’d get you back in my sights.”
Here's a lighter one for you Ancient Pire
Riven was fascinated by the city. The gleaming marble buildings made her feel as though she were in a futuristic utopia. She wandered the streets for a while, delaying her journey towards the Yordle academy. She wanted to walk around, enjoy the sights and contemplate about the whirlwind adventure she had been put on. It seemed only a few days ago to her, that she had been fighting for her life and had prepared herself for death.
The darkness had come and taken her, and she’d had odd dreams of blood and sacrifice. The world around her had appeared to be burning, and no matter how far she ran, the Exile of Noxus had been unable to escape it. Riven laughed inwardly; she didn’t believe in dreams being portents, they were just dreams. She shook the thought out of her head and looked up towards the academy atop the mountain.
If she was being honest with herself, she really didn’t want to go up there because facing this Yordle again would mean confronting her greatest shame. She had condemned a large portion of the Noxian population to death with this Yordle, and helped Talon take over. ‘You’re just going to have to get over it Riv,’ She thought to herself. She took a deep breath and began her way towards the tower.
During her walk she thought about how much she had enjoyed getting to know Lee Sin during the journey, and she could see why Vlad had taken the man with him during his prison break. There was something about him that made him seem very trustworthy, and Riven had found herself spilling more of her own story than she meant to. Although he had not confided in her too much, Riven could tell he was hiding the shame of some unknown event that happened long ago, and decided not to pursue it too much.
Before she even realized it, the doors to the Yordle Academy of Science and Progress loomed before her. She breathed deeply again, preparing herself and entered the building. The lobby was a very basic, stark white room and there was a female Yordle sitting behind the desk. She smiled politely as Riven walked up and said, “How may I help you?” Riven hesitated before saying, “I was told that someone named Ziggs works here. Do you know where I could find him?” The Yordle smiled sweetly and said, “Of course. His class actually just finished up, so he should be ready to see you right now.”
She handed Riven a sheet of paper with a room number on it and gave her directions. Riven wound her way through the academy and was amazed at the amount of Yordles that attended. She had known that there was a small contingent of them outside of Bandle City, but she hadn’t realized there were this many. She kept receiving strange looks from many of the Yordles she passed, and she supposed they didn’t’ see many humans inside their hallowed halls of learning.
After a bit, Riven found the door to Ziggs’ room and knocked. She heard his gravelly, yet somehow still squeaky voice tell her to come in. She opened the door and saw a very peculiar sight. Instead of the body armor she had last seen him in, Ziggs appeared to be wearing a lab coat and the strangest hat she’d ever seen. It was a helmet that had glowing red eyes over it and three green bulbs attached at the top that were sparking.
He looked over at Riven and upon seeing her immediately adopted a defensive stance. “What are you doing here? If you’re trying to recruit me again, I suggest you leave before this gets ugly.” The Hexsplosives Expert spoke at a fast clip, but his tone suggested a strong will. Riven put her hands up and said, “Just hear me out.” The Yordle didn’t respond, so she continued on, “You and I were both tricked by Talon, and in the end, we are both at fault for what happened that day. I’m actually here to ask you for help, but as a representative of Ionia.”
The scientist appeared to be staring at her, although she couldn’t know for sure because of his glowing goggles. “What is it that you want me to do? And I don’t work for free.” Riven smiled, knowing that he was always itching for a chance to use his hexsplosives. “Well, I doubt word has gotten out, but Zaun has invaded Ionia.” Ziggs twitched a bit upon hearing the word Zaun and Riven knew she had him interested. “They have brought cyborg warriors headed by a man named Viktor, and chemical weaponry headed by Singed, the Mad Chemist. I need your help to stop them.”
The Yordle regarded her silently for a long time before saying, “This sounds like something that would be mutually beneficial for us to work together. Now the matter of my price.” Riven replied, “I have been authorized to tell you that if we’re able to retake the city of Malthrir, we will make a new Yordle academy with no government interference.” Riven had been given no such clearance, but was sure that the Ionians would consent if it meant saving their country.
Ziggs thought about it for a moment, and said, “Let me speak to the board here at the Academy. I’ll let you know as soon as we reach a decision.” Riven smiled and told him she’d be staying at the inn just south of the Academy. She left the room feeling slightly better than she had before entering and was sure the board would say yes. If they assented, she’d be sending them back with Lee Sin, while she went on towards Demacia.
She had been intrigued upon hearing about the region since she met Shyvana in the Howling Marsh. Finally, she’d be able to see with her own eyes what this place was like.
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