Hi, hello there, please to meet you^-^ This is my first fanfic (sorry for any typos!) and I would really appreciate any feedback, just try not to be too harsh:/ It is basically an adventure to The Shadow Isles with Quinn, Valor, and Lucian as the main characters, with a few other characters too The title is referencing Lucian's quote, "You took my better half. What you left was a dangerous enemy". It's still a work in progress, but this is part one. Thanks for the view summoner, I really hope you enjoy!
Quinn’s head was spinning as she walked down the hall. Through that door was the room in which Demacia’s best strategists spent hours planning, creating new tactics, and struggling to find an end to the long and bloody war with Noxus. Through that door was her prince, the man she swore her life to, with a mission for her.
Valor’s feathers brushed her cheek as he repositioned himself on her shoulder and she leaned into him, turning to him for support as she always had. Valor shimmed down to perch on her forearm and she raised her arm so that he was eye level with her, he cocked his head to the side and she sighed.
“I know, I know. I shouldn’t be worried. I just have this weird feeling….but you’re right, it’s probably nothing. Thanks Valor.”
Valor chirped approvingly and moved back to his preferred spot on her shoulder. She tried to put any doubt of her head, but for some reason she was anxious. It was odd, she’d never worried about an assignment before, after all there was nothing the two of them couldn’t handle as long as they had each other. Deciding not to worry about it, she quickened her pace, eager to see Jarvan no matter what the reason was, he didn’t have much free time these days. Valor bobbed his head and ruffled his feathers from his spot on her shoulder. Quinn stopped dead in her tracks.
“Valor!” she scolded “Don’t be cheeky! Like him or not he’s the prince.”
Quinn jumped at the sudden voice behind her, spinning on her heels and grimacing inwardly. She pursed her lips, curious how a man whose size was so intimidating could move so silently.
“Yes?” she asked cautiously
“He’s expecting you now.”
Garen’s tone was even and calm as it usually was- the exceptions of course being battle and festivals. It was always a little unsettling to see Garen out of armor, it seemed a part of him. She supposed this was because while she had fought countless battles by his side, she almost never saw him when they were off duty. Thinking on it, she was certain that she and Garen had never had a real conversation besides regular chit chat. Suddenly she couldn’t help wondering why that was. They’d always been polite to each other, amicable even, and they certainly had spent their fair share of time in battle together.
Quinn found herself puzzled, fixated on the idea that two people could be such a big part of each other’s lives, and not know each other at all. Deciding to leave her musings for later Quinn nodded decisively and stood up straight. For just a moment they locked eyes, Quinn searched for any sign of emotion that might prepare her for what was ahead. Anger? Panic? Anything? Now that she thought about it, maybe that had been it all along. He never let his emotions show when it came to the war. It was a little unnerving, a man who could cut down dozens of men in the morning without so much as flinching, and be laughing at dinner. She was almost certain it was his eyes, always emotionless no matter what he was doing, giving nothing away, betraying no secrets. It was the mark of a solider she supposed. It made her immensely uncomfortable holding his gaze like this because no matter how hard she looked, she didn’t see anything. Eyes like that could hold uncountable secrets, eyes like that could let a person tell a thousand lies and never give them away, the thought was horrifying. Suddenly she felt naked, like he could see her every secret, when she could see nothing at all. With this realization she wasn’t sure how she felt about Garen, he was her ally certainly, but did she trust him? Hard to say. She didn’t know how to feel about him, and she knew she didn’t like that one bit.
Breaking his gaze she stood up straight, feet together, eyes set high, just like when she had played knight as a child. And though her heart ached at that though, she cleared her head and walked through the door, ready for whatever challenge lay ahead.
Quinn looked around, studying the maps on the walls. In the center of the room was a large table covered in maps and notes. Pins and flags protruded from several areas, pinpointing Demacian territory and the sights of ongoing battles. Jarvan IV stood behind it blank faced, but Quinn knew better than that. Jarvan had a way of keeping people calm, partly because he always kept his own head, but Quinn noticed his hands gripping the edge of the table, knuckles white, fingernails pressed into the wood. The war was hard on everyone, but he was taking it the hardest by far.
It wasn’t obvious to everyone, but Quinn had always been excellent at observation, it was a necessity of being a marksman. Jarvan always acted distant and calculating, weighing the consequences of every action, but she knew better. Jarvan cared so deeply for Demacia and its people, she saw it in the humble way he addressed each and every subject, taking care to truly listen what to what they had to saw. She saw it in the way the soldiers rallied around him, each and every one willing to lay down his life 100 times over for their prince. She saw it in the way his eyes turned soft whenever Shyvanna was in the room. Most of all, it was the way he would smile softly at all of Valor’s dirty glares and attempts to nibble his fingers “Full of spunk that one! Save it for the battlefield”. He could’ve had Quinn and Valor both executed for that- and though Quinn was mortified it was a habit that never ceased to end- but instead he always smiled. Jarvan allowed her to recognize her dream of being a soldier, he had defended her when no one believed in her, he had given her the honor of the title Demacia’s Wings, and he had treated her like a friend even though he had no obligation to. But though he never let his emotions cloud his judgment, Quinn knew that it pained him every time something went wrong. She could tell that he blamed himself, and was sure he knew the name of each and every fallen soldier, that they weighed heavily on his heart.
Quinn cleared her throat and bowed at the waist.
“Sir. Quinn and Valor reporting for duty.”
Jarvan looked up and met her eyes, the ghost of a smile danced on his lips though his hands did not leave the table.
“Excellent. Quinn, I want you to meet our ally. This is Lucian, I need you to accompany him on a scouting mission.”
“Of course sir. Where is our destination?”
“The shadow Isles.”
Quinn sat in silence, unwilling to let her shock show.
“Of course sir.” She said, a bit weaker than before. “What is our objective?”
“I’ll let Lucian debrief you later. For now I want you to eat dinner and retire to your quarters. Rest, you leave at dawn tomorrow.”
The man with the pistols, Lucian he’d said, looked her up and down. His eyes lingered on Valor and she could see a deep unrest within them. He spook not a word, merely nodded, and made for the door. Even as his footsteps retreated down the hall she could still feel that suspicious gaze and was left searching for what it was in her that had caused that reaction from him.
Puzzled, she gave a salute.
“Yes sir. Your order will be completed.”
As she turned to leave she felt a hand on grasp her wrist. Turning around she met Jarvan’s stare and she braced herself, as if he would change his mind if she showed any sign of doubt. She couldn’t let him down, she was honor bound.
“I just wanted you to know he came in here asking for an army.” His voice dropped “We’ve lost too many men already, I couldn’t afford to offer him even one squad. He doesn’t believe that one soldier, much less a young woman with no formal military training, will be of any use to him.”
To her surprise that stung, but she remained blank faced. She was used to that sort of reaction, although it did hurt a bit hearing it from the man she idolized so much, even if he was just relaying someone else’s opinion. She hated when people threw her lack of training in her face, as if that made her accomplishments worthless instead of that much more meaningful.
“Then it’s a good thing we’re a package deal sir or this might not have worked. A young woman with no military experience, and an eagle.”
He chuckled at her reaction, a soft but hearty sigh. Inwardly she panicked, sure he had seen her doubt and thought she was weak. He put her mind at ease with only a few words
“I’m glad to see your wit is still intact. I have faith in you Quinn, I told him not to worry, that you were one of the best in all of Demacia, and that I’d trust you with my life.”
“I…Thank you sir.” She said genuinely bowing once more and exiting to the hall.
She stared at the floor, unwilling to let anyone see her flushed cheeks. To receive such a compliment from her prince was the highest honor she could imagine, and deep down she couldn’t help but feeling that if she died on this quest – and it was surely a suicide mission- she could die proud.
As she headed for the dining hall the weight of the assignment settled on her, slowing her down as she thought, and planned, and thought. How much could she account for in The Shadow Isles? Was there wind? What was the climate? What was the terrain? Would regular bolts even kill the things dwelling there or would she need incendiary bolts? She supposed nobody knew the answers to these questions and this put a damper on her plans and her mood.
“Quinn.” The voice snapped her out of her thoughts.
Garen put a hand on her shoulder comfortingly.
“You’re a good solider”
“Thank you sir. You’re a good leader.”
That earned her a smile and despite her reservations she met his gaze and smiled back. She saw something there she had never seen before from him, pity. Usually that sort of thing would offend her, but in this instance it seemed kind.
“Do you have any advice for me?”
Garen thought for a moment, weighing his words.
“Fear is the first of many foes.” He said finally as he turned to leave
“And Garen? Tell Lux it’s her turn to keep you and Katarina separated while I’m gone.”
His back was still turned, but Quinn could tell he was blushing, the tips of his ears had gone bright red. She couldn’t help but roll her eyes and smile, but despite her appearance she was far from calm. Her mind was racing, it was astounding really. She could face a thousand men and never shed a tear, but fear….how do you beat fear? How can you beat something invisible, something inside you? Trying to keep Garen’s advice in mind, she continued on to the dining hall, believing more and more that fear was her most worthy opponent yet.
Ok, so here is where I go slicing into this.
Firstly, you need to make sure your story is easily readable in the forums. Tab doesn't work from Office so you will need to put extra gaps in between paragraphs. Thankfully that is quite easy. Secondly you should combine these two chapters into one. There is no real scene change, just a minor transition, so throwing both together would be your best bet. Now lets look at champion portrament.
Thanks for your input! Hopefully I clear up a few things too^-^
All the chapters in it are completely unnecessary, every single one, I just like chapters. The same can be said of cliff hanger endings on chapters, everything (Lucy and what he's doin) is explained in the very next paragraph. As for length I was trying really hard to make it a short story, but that's not working out for me so far T.T
As for Quinn's demeanor, her nervousness is meant to be a sharp contrast to her normal self, a gut feeling telling her something is wrong. That gets expanded on later. Facing the Shadow Isles is the first time she's ever been scared or hesitant, or unsure if she would win, the first time she actually had to face the likelihood of not coming home. I'll try to make that apparent earlier.
For Garen, I personally imagine Garen to be very outgoing and amicable, I think most people do. With Quinn, I imagine her to be friendly and polite, but a little introverted, not trusting easily, mostly keeping to herself. As it mentions, she's excellent at observation. If she can interact with a person and determine they are kind, she can trust them. If she can interact with a person and determine they are bad, she can't. If she can't tell, it makes her feel as though they may be hiding something. Quinn has no reason not to trust Garen, he's honorable, just, etc. but in her eyes, she has no reason TO trust him either if she can't confirm nor deny. My intent is for that trait to directly correlate to her marksmen position. When I think of Quinn on a mission, I imagine her perched with Valor from a good vantage point, running the numbers, the wind, position, speed, etc. and getting the perfect shot. Dealing in facts and absolutes, if she can't decide absolutely you are trustworthy, then she won't trust you. Anyway, her reaction to Garen, someone who SHOULDN'T make her nervous who she SHOULD trust but does because she can never tell what he's thinking, is supposed to lead into why she has such a hard time dealing with the ever guarded Lucian. But again, I will add more details to make that apparent. And of course, all of this is merely speculated for the purpose of the story^-^
As for Valor and J4, Valor doesn't hate J4, he just doesn't trust him. The reason for this is that I always loved Quinn's joke, particularly the one about J4 because the whole idea just appeals to me so much. I love Valor having a very distinct personality, one very different from Quinn's (I imagine Valor very boisterous, proud, with a sassy streak. And of course a fearsome warrior:3 )I loved it so much I wanted to incorporate it somehow. But J4 will win him over eventually^-^
I wish I had a friend to edit my stuff T.T Guess I'm off to that then lol, a necessary evil.
Edit: *Revised Chap 1,2, and 3 added as well ^-^ with the chaps taken out for aesthetic appeal:/ I tried to make her motives and such much more clear and introduce them earlier.
Very well done. The alterations make the meaning much more apparent and easier to read. A+ for certain.
I look forward to more from this.
Also, it's ok if its a short story, but try not to cut it up so much. Having so little will disappoint a good amount of folks
A Dangerous Enemy Part 2!
The dining hall was as busy and bright as ever and Quinn couldn’t help but feel out of place. It was almost unnerving to feel so morose in such a lively place. Delicately woven tapestries of royal blue and gold hung from every wall. Long wooden tables lined the room with plush chairs, offering soldiers a place to rest their feet. Even the tables themselves were festive, each one covered in intricate murals depicting the greatest battles and legends of ancient Demacian heroes. They had been enchanted by some of the army’s mages last summer, a surprise for the prince after his elation at the moving chalk drawings Galio had created in the castle’s courtyard. Galio had done it to amuse a group of children, a surprisingly thoughtful gesture for a golem, but no one had been more fascinated than Jarvan. Each table told another tale from Demacian history, with the royal crest as a center piece displaying an ever changing portrait of each king right up to Jarvan’s father.
Underneath the platters tiny soldiers defeated dragons and embarked on great journeys, and underneath the bright chandeliers soldiers chatted jovially. As usual, the dining hall was packed, buzzing with energy and full of laughter. But Quinn wasn’t laughing, and she wasn’t hungry. So she sat alone, Valor nestled in a chair of his own to her right, and tried to figure out what this mission could possibly be about.
The shadow isles had always been forbidden, feared even by the king himself. The evils contained there were unknown and uncountable, and even the bravest and strongest warriors had been unable to best the horrible creatures that originated from there. A knot grew in her stomach, tightening as she realized she didn’t have to wonder what she may face, she had already had an encounter with their kind. Her head pounded as the sound of hoofs raced through her mind. She had faced but one, luckily in the confines of the League, and the memory tormented her endlessly. How many nights had she jolted awake in a cold sweat, that face burned into her memory. That face. It was the epitome of hatred, of agony, of terror. She was certain it would haunt her to her dying day, and maybe beyond that. It was a creature that had kept her up at night, Valor sitting protectively by her side, because she couldn’t bear the thought of turning off the light and being left in the darkness where something like that might exist. That was all in the safety of Summoner’s Rift, had it been in the real world….she never would’ve had a chance.
A chill ran down her spine as she imagined what something like that would do to her, but worse was the realization that it was probably so inhumane, so ungodly that she couldn’t imagine it. She had never known fear until the day she faced Hecarim.
Suddenly she felt like a child, she wanted to put her head in her hands right there at the table and just cry. She hadn’t cried since the day she found Valor. Thinking of that day she got ahold of herself, reminding herself of who she was. She was a high ranking soldier, indebted to the Lightsheild family, and certainly capable of holding herself with the dignity a soldier should. What would Jarvan think if he saw her now, sitting here feeling sorry for herself? Nostalgia filled her now as it always did as her thoughts drifted to her life before this, and to the day she found Valor. It was hard to imagine it now, stubborn and proud Valor in the condition he had been when they met. He had been so thin and fragile looking, as though she might break him if she touched him. His right wing, the one that now hung a little crooked where it had healed, was bent at a crude angle and blood dripped from his beak. She thought he might attack her –if he had the strength to- after all her a wild animal, a wounded wild animal. But his eyes had pleaded to her, and she knew then as she knew now that their meeting was fated. She had never handled anyone with as much tenderness as she had that day as she picked his mangled body off the ground and clutched it to her chest, sprinting so carefully so as not to drop him, urgency coursing through her in a desperate attempt to save his life. Never except in that same spot, exactly one year before. She sighed deeply, trying to clear her head. Though he’d never admit it, Valor needed her as much as she needed him, and that gave her purpose. Together, she could face any enemy with her head held high knowing that Valor would always have her back.
Reflecting on the past, she turned and looked at him now. A broad chested Demacian eagle in his prime, a true miracle considering his species was believed to be extinct. She couldn’t help but wonder if he felt the same way she did so much of the time, just a little out of place. She supposed that was just another reason they relied on each other so much. Valor nuzzled down into the velvet cushion of his chair, chirping contently and jarring Quinn out of her thoughts. She sighed.
“No Valor, I don’t think they’d let me take one of the chairs into our room, they’re for the dining hall.”
He squinted, clearly disgruntled and turned around in the chair, facing his back toward her.
“Yes I know you’re a warrior too, but you don’t see any other warriors bringing the dining hall chairs into their rooms do you? What’s wrong with your bed? Isn’t it comfy? I gave you my softest pillow.”
They sat a few moments in silence.
Stubborn as ever, he did not budge. She sighed again, picking up a particularly delicious looking piece of roast potato and offering it to him as penance. He offered her no response and she pushed her plate over to him, knowing that’s what he really wanted. He turned back and his eyes sparkled in silent thanks as he began greedily picking through the potatoes, singling out the biggest, most perfectly browned to be his prey. As he started into the leg of rabbit, happily munching and whistling his joy, she couldn’t help but smile. Oh Valor…he could always rouse her when she got down. And it was better he ate it anyway, she knew she wouldn’t be able to, not the way her stomach was so adamantly protesting this journey. She looked around her, soaking it all in. The clinking of glasses, the adventures of the past playing out beneath the silver platters full of delicious food, the beauty of something as simple as a dining hall. Everything in Demacia was beautiful. Perhaps the last beautiful thing her eyes would see. A part of her longed to be with the other soldiers. She wished she was laughing with them as they drank fine wine as they toasted her in the hopes of a successful journey. But wistful thinking would get her nowhere, to the high ranks of the Demacian army she was a tried and true warrior, but to them…to them she was “quirky”.
She supposed she understood how she might seem a little intimidating, after all, here she was just a girl who talked to a bird, and yet together they had become Demacia’s Wings. Together she and Valor had risen in ranks twice as fast with half the battle experience, it definitely created a rift between the other soldiers and herself. Things were better now than when she’d first joined certainly, she’d gained their respect and admiration by besting Talon, but respect did not equal companionship. Most of the soldiers had known each other their whole lives, taken the same battle training classes as young children, she was common born, an outsider. But that was alright, it had always been just her and Valor, and she supposed that was the way it would remain for the most part, it was just the way of things and choosing not to accept or not to be happy with it was just foolish.
“It’s foolish not to eat, you’ll need your strength.” Quinn jumped at the emotionless voice behind her.
She turned, Lucian had taken the seat to her left –how long had been there? – and she had been so absorbed in her thoughts she didn’t even notice.
“Sorry” she said laughing nervously “You startled me.”
“You’ll need to be more observant than that if you want to stay alive.”
Quinn searched his eyes, probing them for more information, but they were as closed as ever and she found no more than she had before. His tone was even and soft, no malice or sarcasm, so why did she feel so threatened?
“Yeah, of course… I just meant…” Quinn was at a loss for words, not sure if she should try and reassure him of her abilities.
“I’m not asking for excuses.”
“Oh no, I’m sorry. That wasn’t what I meant. Of course not.”
Her head drooped, there was something about Lucian that made her feel like a scolded child even though he couldn’t have been that much older than her. Or could he? Now that she thought about it there was nothing in his face or stature that gave her a good indicator of his age. His face was blank and unblemished except for a crease above his eyes that suggested his brows were often furrowed in concentration. It was the face of a twenty year old man, but the way he carried himself-fluently and precisely- was that of a man almost twice that age. She couldn’t help but wonder who he was, what he had seen that could render a human so utterly stoic.
“I’m here to give you the details of our mission.”
There was nothing in his voice that suggested unhappiness, but she couldn’t help but remember Jarvan’s words. She would make Jarvan proud. She would prove herself to him, surely that would be an easy task after proving her worth to an entire army.
“Yes sir.” She replied dutifully, sitting up straight.
“Your job is to accompany me to the Shadow Isles. We will be investigating the western shore, an area of approximately 30,000 square feet. You are to watch obey my orders without question, you are to slay anything you encounter there no matter what you think you see. If you cannot fend for yourself or pose a threat to my personal safety I will not hesitate to leave you. I will not hesitate to kill you. Is that understood?”
“Yes sir. That’s not a very big area, what are we looking to find that’s so specific to that location?”
“I said you will obey my orders without question. It’s none of your concern.”
“Don’t I need to know what we’re looking for?” she asked, a tad put off
“Impertinent girl.” Quinn was taken aback. She had been called many things, but never impertinent. “I will indulge you once and only once. Are you aware that I have joined the League?”
“No sir” Quinn replied softly, wondering what motives this mysterious man could have for joining the league but not wanting to risk his wrath by asking another question. Luckily, she did not have to.
“I joined for one purpose. I believed I could gain information on our target. I have yet to encounter him, but through the League I have gained powerful information and a powerful ally in Demacia. I’m hunting a monster. The Chain Warden.”
Quinn contemplated what this meant. She had heard of The Chain Warden, everyone in Valoran had. He was the reason mothers locked their children up tight at night, he had been the downfall of the mightiest warriors, he was nightmare incarnate. She was horrified, and Lucian’s words made her think he could tell.
He shook his head regretfully “A girl and a bird is what they send me. A thousand soldiers still would be too few and they send me you. Try to be prepared.”
“I am sir.”
“What is it you think you’re prepared for? The journey, or to die? Because I highly doubt you’ve actually come to terms with either.”
With that Lucian stood up and pushed his chair in, but not before taking the plate of rabbit and potatoes from a very disgruntled Valor and placing it in front of her.
“Eat.” He insisted.
Valor squawked angrily, drawing the attention of the soldiers dining at the table behind her.
“Sorry about him.” She mumbled sheepishly. As Lucian turned to walk away Quinn called out after him.
“One more thing…would you call me impertinent again if I asked why you’re hunting Thresh? I know he’s a horrible, horrible monster. But the mightiest have tried, and the mightiest have fallen. Why are you so eager to find him?”
“Yes. I would call you impertinent again if you asked that.” And with that he was gone, but for a brief moment Quinn swore she saw a flicker of emotion, the briefest light beneath his eyes. But what did it mean?
Quinn managed to choke down a few mouthfuls of food before returning the plate to Valor to finish off. She lay awake in her room hours after she should’ve been asleep. She needed her rest, she knew she needed it, but she couldn’t bring herself to turn out the lights. Hellish prophecies played beneath her eyelids every time she dared to try and find peace in sleep. She tossed and turned, thinking of Hecarim and wondering if it was possible for things even worse than him to exist. She tossed and turned, thinking of the song all Demacian’s teach their children as a warning of The Chain Warden and the dangers of the shadow isles.
Cling, clang go the chains. Cling, clang go the chains.
But more than anything there was something in particular Lucian had said that stuck with her.
“No matter what you think you see” he had said, it reverberated in her head, seeping into her every though, saturating her mind in fear. What horrors would she face? Things worse then she could ever imagine. She tried to steal her nerves by reminding herself of when she first joined the ranks. War is a hell of its own, and the atrocities humans could commit against each other had appalled her, but they had not broken her. Why should this be any different? Because, she reasoned, no matter what horrible, godless things happen in war, men who are monsters are not the same as actual monsters.
Garen’s words came to her many times that night, and she reflected on them solemnly. In order to have any hope of defeating these monsters, she knew she first had to best her own fear. If she let the fear take over she'd have no hope of preforming at her best. She was certain she would die on the mission, but she would follow her orders till end with bravery and honor, a true Demacian. Valor stayed by her side until finally after midnight her eyelids grew too heavy to open and she drifted into a dreamless sleep. And though she was struggling to come to terms with her all but inevitable death, she did not allow herself to cry.
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