Vacuos Oculos (Empty Eyes)
Environmental Awareness: superior (rank 2)
Vastus took a deep breath as he plunged into the inky blackness of the dungeon. There were many within the temple who urged him to reconsider the amount time he would spend in the dungeons, or at least to change his choice of teacher. But Vastus did as he always did, exactly what he wanted.
As Vastus traveled deeper into the dungeon, the glow of torches started to melt away the darkness around him until finally the stairs and the darkness came to an end. As he entered the vast catacomb he was greeted by the bowed head of the initiates of the Order including the two men who once held the names Lance and Theo. Then out of the crowd emerged an old man cloaked in the black and imperial purple robes of a Magi.
"Greetings Vastus" his voice bounced through the room as he lowered his bald head.
"Greetings Magi Umbra. I'm glad you could be the one to help me with my training, especially under these circumstances." replied Vastus as the old cleric and the initiates followed him into the training chamber.
"It is a honor to help one in line to be a Sion of N'hil. Besides it would do no one good if a temple leader did not reach his full potential." The initiates sat in one corner of the chamber as their two elders spoke under the orange light of the torches.
"They should have named you one of the potential Sions, Umbra. You possess knowledge, power and wisdom that I have yet to even tap into."
"It was not up to them. N'hil himself who chose you and no mans word is above N'hil's." Umbra rubbed his bristly chin and watched as Vastus stepped into the center of the room "Now lets see how capable you are in the arts".
"I'm ready for anything you can dish out." mused Vastus as he folded his arms.
"Good." Umbra turned to the initiates "I need two volunteers to spar with Vastus." The initiates looked at each other nervously until two husky men stood up and walked over to Umbra "Brave men. All I need each of you two young men to do is hit Vastus once. If you can do that you win." The two men nodded their heads as they locked their sights onto Vastus.
"Lets get this over with." droned Vastus barely showing any interest in his opponents. Umbra waved his hand as if he was dismissing a fly and all the flames in the chamber were whisked away engulfing the room in gross darkness. The two initiates slowly slid across the floor as they tried to pull back the blackness and locate their foe.
"Your not going to find me by keeping your distance" taunted Vastus as he watched his opponents. One of the men ran towards him and used the momentum to launch a punch at Vastus but he missed his target and went tumbling down onto the cold rocky floor. "You're still depending on your eyes that is why you missed. It is your eyes, not the darkness that blinds you.
The second initiate ran towards Vastus and then leaped into the air launching a kick towards him. His attack was dead on but Vastus maneuvered his way behind the monk and elbowed his foe in the back of the head instantly knocking him out. "That's better. Too obvious though.". As the last word crept from his mouth the first initiate attacked Vastus from behind but before he could complete the attack Vastus' fist collided with his face.
Vastus smiled as he felt cartilage crumple and crack from his blow. "Are you pleased Umbra?" mused Vastus as he looked upon the shocked faces of the other initiates, but as he searched the room his smiled disappeared, Umbra had seemingly vanished.
Abditus Manus (Hidden Hands)
Gravity: superior (rank 2)
- Ranged Attack
Try as he might, Vastus could not sense Umbra. He had heard of a skill that could seemingly erase a monks presence but he had never seen anyone use it before. "Where the hell his he?" he whispered to himself.
"Your aptitude in Vacuos Oculos is equal to that of a masters." Umbra's voice seemed to come from the very walls themselves. "But there are some veils that not even a master can peel back." An unusually heavy fist struck Vastus in the gut and disappeared.
"Isn't this a little unfair Umbra?." shouted Vastus as he pushed his will to it's limits. "Umbra?" Vastus was then struck first with a kick and then a punch sending him flying into a wall. Vastus pushed his focus to it's limits trying to sense the old monk. Then he saw it, just barely, but he saw it, a shadow amongst the darkness charging towards him. Vastus waited until Umbra got within arms reach and dodged the old masters attack.
Umbra stopped abruptly before he collided with the wall and turned to look at Vastus. "Good." The darkness in the chamber scattered to the shadows as the torches were once again adorned with flames. He pointed to the unconscious monks and cracked a smile "Move them out of the way.", two initiates dragged their fallen peers to a corner and began tending to their wounds while Umbra and Vastus peered into each others eyes.
Umbra was more than twice his age but Vastus new that made him even more dangerous "Are you sure about this Umbra? This is only an evaluation after all.".
"These initiates are no match for you and the other monks are needed in the temple. Besides you should have no problem fighting an old man. The first person to be knocked down loses, now lets begin."
Vastus emptied his mind and enveloped his body in the Void and ran towards Umbra with unnatural speed. As he got closer to Umbra's unmoving body he focused the Void into his fist increasing it's weight and unleashed a devastating punch into Umbras gut. Or at least he would have if Umbra hadn't caught his fist. "Dammit! I should have known better." he thought to himself as he tried to plan his next move. He knew anything he could do Umbra could undo in seconds.
He would have to be clever to even have chance. Vastus filled his legs with the Void causing his feet to press into the ground, then he quickly swathed Umbra in the Voids invisible energy and threw him across the room. He watched as Umbra slowly floated to the ground and then Vastus released a burst of energy towards Umbra.
"Fast thinking, Sion. But Wisdom trumps ingenuity." he said swatted the attack back towards Vastus "Forget cleverness, show me your skill."
Vastus prepared to dodge the move but then gravity instantly reclaimed it's will upon his body with a vengeance anchoring him to where he was. He was immobile due Umbra's will but he still thought maybe could still turn the tables. He stopped struggling and filled his body with the Void. Unable to withstand the force of both Umbra and his power he collapsed while the blast zoomed over his head and cracked the wall behind him. As he fell he could feel his body lighten as Umbra's grip on his body faltered, he used the opportunity to bend the Void to his will "Is this enough skill for you?"
Umbra's eyes locked onto Vastus as he floated up to the ceiling "You possess a masters skill. But against me it is not enough." He waved his hand and the chamber began to collapse around Vastus "I am sorry master Vastus. I am not impressed."
Vastus looked up at the ceiling and tried to reverse Umbra's will but then to his dismay he realized what was happening " Shit! He's using that." as he dodged the falling rocks he sent a flaring glare towards Umbras dark and frigid eyes.
Vorax Inanitas (Devouring Void)
Disintegration: superior (rank 2)
Vastus desperately dodged the falling rubble as he descended from the collapsing ceiling "Are you trying to kill me you old geezer? Or have you lost your mind!?" his questions went unanswered as the chamber fell around him, the only thing saving him now was his skill and sheer luck. As he dodged and blocked the rubble he could sense Umbra running towards him with venomous determination. Vastus watched as the falling rocks turned to dust as they touched the Magi's' body "If you're going to use that, this can no longer be called an evaluation."
The initiates were awestruck as they watched the two monks wield powers they have only heard of devastate their surroundings " I stopped considering this an evaluation the moment I realized how weak you are Vastus." growled Umbra "You don't deserve the title of Sion."
Umbra chased Vastus through the dust and rubble destroying everything in his path "You cannot escape me Vastus." growled the old man as he pursued his pupil. Umbra scowled as realized that Vastus had stopped running. "So you've given up. Finally you show wisdom.".
He increased his speed and as he neared Vastus he was shocked to see a smile on his face, by the time he had realized what was happening one of his feet fell into hole which sent the old monk hurtling into the ground. As he tried to catch his balance he felt his body being pulled to the ground until he was face down in dust and pebbles. "How?" exclaimed the old monk as he tried to stand up.
Vastus slowly walked up to Umbra and smiled as he placed his hands on his hips. "I guess cleverness beat wisdom today Umbra. I'm sure you knew I also can use the art of Vorax Inanitas, but unlike you I cannot use it from a distance and fighting you up close would have been suicide. So I did the next best thing." Vastus waved his hand clearing away the dust revealing dozens of foot shaped holes all over the chamber.
Umbra slowly stood up and dusted himself off "Why did you show mercy? You know that is unacceptable in the eyes of N'hil."
"I could ask you the same question. If you wanted you could have killed without breaking sweat." The two men chuckled and walked towards the entrance of the chamber as bits of dust fell from the ceiling.
"Besides if you killed me you would have to replace as leader of this temple, and we both know you don't want that."
"That is true." replied Umbra as he gestured for the initiates to follow them out of the chamber "You are skilled Vastus but you are far from reaching the strength of the others who are in line, and the last thing you want is to be overlooked due to your lack of power."
"That is something I cannot allow to happen Umbra, which is why I am placing my life and my future in your hands."
"It is not I that you should place your trust in. In the end it will be N'hil who chooses his new Sion." he put his hand on Vastus' shoulder and smiled "So put your faith in nothing, hope for nothing. For that is when your prayers are answered."