A New Dawn

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    Islesbury Docks

    Narshal stood in Islesbury's docks, the great ocean stretched out behind him, along with the many docked ships where strong-backed, salty smelling sailor's and slaves unloaded their goods. Although it was midday and the sun was high in the sky, the dock of Islesbury was in near permanent darkness, surrounded by tall, narrow, rundown buildings. Mostly inns and shops. You could tell who regularly worked on the docks due to their pasty white skin. At his immediate front stood the criminals he had bought, behind them the many merchant stands who sold the more unsavoury goods, and finally, behind that stood the rest of the city.

    He took a step toward them, he had a basic understanding of their backgrounds and personalities from the jailer, it was also printed on their release forms. He pulled a dozen small, leather sacks from his pockets and handed one to each of them, keeping eye contact with each of them as he did. ''In the satchel'' he began ''You will find 100 gold pieces.'' Placing his hand on the hilt of his sword he looked each of them up and down. ''You'll need to buy yourselves a decent weapon, or armour, or maybe some better clothes.'' His cold gaze founds it's way to the sickly looking boy on the end ''Maybe some thick armour.''

    ''There's one gate out of the city,'' He pointed out ''If you try to escape, you WILL be caught before you make it to the city gates. I have your release forms. And you can't leave the without them.'' It was true, they couldn't, every slave in the city had official documentation, and could not leave without their owner's, regardless of the situation. Lifting his arm he pointed to one of the largest building in the harbour district, several stories high and riddled with moss ''The Limping Weasel'' he said, looking at the inn ''Meet me in their when you have made your purchases, acquainted yourselves, and are ready to go.'' With that he smirked, turned, and strode off into the inn, without turning back.
  2. Anastatia squinted in the bright mid-day sunlight, gasping when her vision came back and she could see the harbour. It had been so long since she had seen the sun, and even longer since she had felt the warmth of the sun's rays on her skin. She sighed and stretched her legs and arms, taking in the salty sea air that was all around her, and smiling. The sun felt nice, the enveloping warmth a welcome change from the cold and wet chamber she was staying in at the prison. Sure, she had been there the shortest of all the inmates, but it didn't change the fact that she was grateful to be free.

    Well, mostly free. Sighing in content, she listened to her new master explain the ground rules for her new life. She perked up when she heard him mention they were to be receiving money to buy weapons, armor, and new clothes. Upon hearing this, she looked down at her own clothes, once a cotton nightdress and leather sandals but now nothing more than a few rags staying together by the barest of threads. If anyone recognized her now, even after months locked in her cell, they would be appalled at the sight. Dirty clothes that hung off her too-skinny frame, long unruly black hair that hung in matted strands on the sides of her sweaty head, and an overall state of dirtiness and filth that anyone would take great care to avoid being contaminated with. She did the best she could, of course, but when you no longer are provided clean clothes every day like she was used to, she had to make do with what she had. She perked up again when he mentioned escaping.

    "...If you try to escape, you WILL be caught..." She tuned him out again. She knew this. Without her slave papers...she shuddered at the thought of being a slave...she couldn't leave the city. "...The Limping Weasel. Meet me there when you have made your purchases, acquainted yourselves, and are ready to go." The man cast one more look at the lot, then turned and walked into a pub, leaving them all standing there in the middle of the busy square, attracting wandering eyes and whispers from those around them. She lifted the flap of her leather satchel, revealing 100 shiny gold coins that glinted in the sunlight, even from the darkness of the bag inside. She closed it quickly, then ran off in search of a clothing store she remembered from coming here a while ago with her father. After finding it and buying a new shirt, undergarments, and pants, as well as new leather boots, she went off in search of an armory. If what she thought was true, she would need good armor, and some weapons. Good thing she already knew how to use a sword. Some of the other slaves were probably floundering right now, trying to get a feel for a new weapon and armor. Anastatia didn't need to go through all that, as she had already picked out a bronze longsword, as well a chestplate, before wrapping her satchel around her waist and heading back towards the ship, the sea breeze ruffling her hair as she walked.
    #2 Lilpuff, Aug 4, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 4, 2014
  3. Alexandra stood with her head bowed and her arms clasped behind her back. It had been a very long time since she was last outside of the prison, and at first, the feelings had been rather overwhelming; the warmth of the sun, the fresh sea breeze, the brightness of natural light... It all served to remind her of how long she had been cooped up in a prison cell, left to rot away as a forgotten person. Looking at the rest of the group, and judging by how her clothes compared to the others, Alexandra could tell she had spent a lot longer in prison than some of the others. There were maybe two people that looked as bedraggled as she did, but it was difficult to tell whether or not they had served time for longer than she had, as they may have looked that way normally. Islesbury's ruling elite were not adverse to locking up the homeless and decrepit simply for being homeless and decrepit, so she couldn't be sure.

    Her new "owner", a term that she utterly loathed, was a man by the name of Narshal, who was as mysterious as any man she had ever met. Narshal had bought Alexandra, along with the other prisoners, and brought them to docks, all without a word as to why he was doing such a thing. He was immediately the most interesting person around, but it also made him the one that she trusted least. Not that her fellow ex-cons were any more trustworthy, but at least they were in the same position as Alexandra was, and that might count for something.

    The group had been led to an area of the Islesbury docks that Alexandra remembered well. It was a common refuge for her and Robert, and she knew plenty of people in the area. Of course, being known by people was not the same as being liked by them, so she would have to be careful here. Whilst the official story was that Robert had been the brains and brawn of their operation, with Alexandra as his subservient partner, anyone that had known the couple would have been convinced that Alexandra was the brains, with Robert as her lackey. Robert had friends here, and she was sure that some of them would not take kindly to seeing her free and roaming the streets.

    Especially not with a purse of gold coins. She swallowed hard when Narshal dropped the purse into her hand and blinked, before looking up at the older man and flashing him the sweetest smile she could muster. "Thank you, sir," she said, offering him a curtsey in response, although he seemed to ignore it entirely.

    Narshal then went on to instruct the group to arm themselves, before reporting back to The Limping Weasel, a pub that Alexandra had spent plenty of nights in before. If she was to return there, then one thing was certain; she would need much better clothing than her tattered prisoner's garb. Whilst Narshal spoke, she counted the coins in the purse, checking that she had indeed been given a full hundred coins, before trying to remember where the best shops were in this area of the docks. The best shops, of course, were the ones with the laxest security.

    With his orders given, Narshal turned on his heels and presumably headed for the Weasel, leaving Alexandra to her own devices. Looking at the rest of the group, some of them seemed dumbstruck, but one of the other women had already set off on her own. By coincidence, the other woman had entered the exact clothing shop that Alexandra was heading for.

    I guess she must know that old man Bengtsson doesn't see or hear too well these days either. He's one hell of a tailor, but he's a dreadful merchant, which is terribl....y good for me!

    Alexandra scoured the area outside the shop as she approached and found an old battered cloth sack on the ground, beside a pile of rubbish. She smirked and picked it up, stuffing it full of ripped clothing from the rubbish pile, before slinging it over her shoulder. She entered the shop and called out a cheerful hello, waving to Bengtsson and making sure that he spotted the very full sack that she was carrying.

    She approached some undergarments and began removing the tattered clothing from her sack, dropping it to the floor and kicking it beneath the table, into a dark corner where it was out of sight. Once the other woman was paying for her goods, and providing a convenient distraction, Alexandra took the chance to grab a set of underclothes and, using her body as a wall to block the line of view, she stuffed them into her sack. She then managed to stuff a white blouse into the bag too, before beginning to whistle a jaunty tune and heading towards the boots. The whistling would ensure that Bengtsson was watching her again as she began to try on a dark red cloak. A cheerful whistle could often cover the most nefarious of deeds. The other woman had now left the shop, so Alexandra chose a thick, warm brown cloak with a hood, a fairly low-cut blue tunic, and a pair of nearly black leggings, before approaching the counter and paying full price, even telling Bengtsson to "keep the change", eliciting a warm smile from the old man. She smiled back and whistled cheerfully as she left the shop.

    The clothes she had bought, along with the change she had so generously given away came to fifteen gold coins. The underclothes and blouse that she had stolen should have cost a further eight, which put a smile on her face. Once she was far enough from the shop, Alexandra emptied out all the rubbish from her sack and then placed her new clothes inside of it for the time being. She would still need a weapon and some armour, so the next port of call would be the to the local leather-smith. Metal armour, whilst useful, was heavy, expensive, noisy and not very flattering to her figure, so Alexandra had always bought leather armour instead and even though she wasn't paying for it, that habit wasn't about to change.

    She found the leather-smith easily enough, surprising herself by how well she remembered the streets and entered the shop. As well as a middle-aged woman at the counter, this shop had a grizzled looking man in his late fifties stood by the door who eyed her with suspicion. She gave him a small and a nod of the head, before walking straight towards the boots and looking for something in her size.

    Damn it, I don't think I'll get anything for free here! I won't be able to sweet-talk that woman into giving me any freebies, and with old hawk-eye on the door, I'm not likely to get away with sneaking anything out. I really do hate having to pay full price, but it's not worth getting sent back to the prison just yet.

    Alexandra tried on a few pairs of boots and settled upon a warm, comfortable pair in dark brown made from tanned leather that came to just below her knee, before picking up a leather jerkin in a similar colour. The jerkin would serve as both a corset of sorts, accentuating her cleavage, which was reasonable enough its own rights, and as armour. With a degree of reluctance, she paid her coins to the woman and then placed the clothing into her bag, before heading out into the street once more.

    She hadn't spent too long in either shop, but to fully complete her plans, Alexandra needed to move quickly. She still had over fifty coins left, but she would need that to buy a weapon (or two), and she also desired to spend some of the coin on a hotel room, so that she could get cleaned up before dressing in her new clothes. It had been a very long time since she had known the luxury of a warm bath, and Alexandra was determined to know that feeling today. She easily had the coin left to do both; buying a knife would cost very little and a bow wasn't nearly as expensive as a quiver of arrow, but both items together should only come to forty gold pieces, leaving her ten to spend on beautifying herself.

    This would leave her without much money at all, though, and she wasn't happy about that. Instead, she had an idea.

    She opened up the sack and removed one of the undergarments from it, along with her coin purse. She emptied the leather satchel into the underwear and tightly wrapped it back up, before shoving it to the bottom of her sack. Alexandra then walked back to where The Limping Weasel stood and found Narshal sat at one of its dimly lit tables.

    "Narshal!" she called out, catching the eyes of several burly men with her innocent expression and naive-sounding voice. "Hi there," she said, grinning broadly and skipping across the wooden floorboards towards the older man. "You won't believe what I just bought!" She blinked her eyes at Narshal and then took her leather boots out of the bag, holding them up to him. "Look!" she said, smiling like a child on Christmas, "Magic boots! I bought them from some market trader and he told me that they would make me invisible! When I tried them on, he couldn't see me!" She hurriedly kicked off her sandals and pulled the boots on. "See?" she declared proudly, "Well, actually, no! You can't see me, can you?" She giggled to herself.

    "I can see you just fine," replied Narshal sternly.

    "What?" Alexandra blinked and her face fell. "I- wh- Y-you can see me? But the boots... I... Maybe I've got them on the wrong feet-"

    She began to remove the boots, but her chatter was interrupted by Narshal. "They're not magic boots. You've been taken for a fool by a merchant. I thought you would have known better than to trust anyone on the docks, aren't you from Islesbury?"

    Alexandra swallowed hard, and blinked her eyes a few time, to make sure that they looked good and moist. "I am from Islesbury, but I don't know much about the docks. I never went there, and Robert never trusted me to buy any equipment. I s-suppose that this is why." Her bottom lip began to quiver, "Oh, I'm such an idiot. I'm sorry. I can't believe I wasted my money on these! I- I didn't even buy a weapon..."

    This is it, Alex, let's see if he's bought your little act...

    She sniffled and took a deep breath, as if trying to calm herself down, before wiping her eyes on the back of her hand. "I'm sorry," she said quietly, before looking up at Narshal, blinking her eyes innocently. "I- I promise I'll be more careful with my money in future, but I don't know if I'm of any use to you without a weapon. Do you think you could lend me enough coins for a bow and a dagger? I'll work hard to pay you back, sir." She bowed her head and bit her bottom lip. "P-please, sir, can you spare me some more coins?"
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  4. Narshal, lightblue
    Narshal had taken the darkest corner of the The Limping Weasel, not wanting to attract any unnecessary attention to himself. No doubt the others would. The inside of the pub smelt permanently of moist wood, it was the main resting spot for the many captains and their crews who planned to stay in the city only long enough until their goods were sold, or stolen, either way they made the place smell and uncomfortable, he thought to himself, wrinkling his nose in disgust. Regardless, he'd spent many a night here since he sailed to Lomoria a few years ago. It was perhaps the most strategically placed building in the whole city, placed directly between the harbour and market district, gaining patrons from both areas. You wouldn't guess it from their appearance, but this place had made the owner's filthy rich.

    He steered his train of thought in the direction of his new company. He wondered how they would get on with each other, more so than him, and how they'd handle themselves in a scrap. Sure some of them had combat experience, but had they fought in wars? He doubted it. Most of them were young and inexperienced, most probably over confident in their skills. But no doubt they would surely end up back in the dungeons if he set them loose, he let a chuckle escape his lips.

    That's when the first of them returned, spotting him and calling his name she gained more than just his attention. Honestly he hadn't committed their names to memory, as she skipped over to his table he quickly skimmed through the documentation for all of them. Ah, Alexandra. He said to himself as she arrived in front of the table, still squeaking words at him. She explained how she had wasted the coin he had given her on a pair of not-so-magical boots.

    "P-please, sir, can you spare me some more coins?" She asked, crocodile tears still in her eyes.

    Narshal pushed his hands into his pocket, keeping his glance stuck to the young woman as he did so. He pulled ten coins out and place them on the table in one swift motion with an audible thud, pushing them towards her whilst remaining silent. Many other silent eyes followed the gold as it slid across the table from the shadows of the pub.
  5. Score! Way to go, Alex! Now grab them and get out of here before he changes his mind, or someone recognises you...

    Alexandra smiled sweetly and took the coins off of the table, clutching them to her chest and using her forearms to push up her breasts, just to see whether Narshal was as cold and reserved as he really seemed. "Thank you, sir," she said enthusiastically, blinking her eyes repeatedly and trying to capture his attention, but it didn't seem to be working. Or, at least, if Narshal was taking in the view, then he wasn't being very obvious about it. Alexandra was unable to stop herself pouting at the perceived lack of interest, but she quickly caught herself, bowing her head into another curtsey and then scurrying out of The Limping Weasel and back onto the streets of Islesbury.

    So far, Alexandra had avoided coming across anyone that she had known here before she was incarcerated. Given the kinds of characters that she had associated with, and their lines of work, it was a fair assumption that at least half of them were either dead or locked up too, but she still wanted to lay low. The brown cloak would help her to hide her face, but for now, her malnourished appearance, pale skin, burlap sack and raggedy clothing gave her the look of a beggar, so most people in the streets just avoided making eye contact with her. Right now, that was fine, but she knew that once she had gotten cleaned up and dressed, she would be turning a lot more heads in the right direction.

    She had three places left to visit. From a practical point of view, the first thing that she needed to do was to get a weapon. Not only would it be useful, but, after convincing Narshal that she was a rather clueless, naive girl, she now needed to work hard to make sure that he didn't think she was entirely useless. He owned her and that meant that he could return her to the prison and take another convict instead, so this was her only chance at some kind of freedom. To be fair, if she was allowed to roam the city freely in between doing whatever jobs Narshal had lined up, it might not be so bad. Alexandra wasn't much of a fighter, really, she didn't really know how to swing a sword or an axe, but she knew which parts of the human body were most vital and she knew how to slide a dagger between two rib bones before anyone would ever realise what had happened.

    That might prove to ruin the illusion she had crafted for Narshal. After all, what sort of sweet little girl is that good at killing people? No, she would need something else, something that seemed more natural. She would buy a dagger, of course, and keep it concealed, but, to the rest of the party, she would be an archer of no particular distinction. That would be easy, too, because it required no deceit; Alexandra knew how to hit a target with a bow, but it required her to concentrate if she wanted to really hit the target.

    Of course, dressed in a prisoner's garb, she might struggle to buy a weapon in Islesbury. Even here, in the docks, people were wary of criminals, and some merchants would refuse to deal with them. Generally, those were the better merchants, the ones that sold higher quality weapons and occasionally supplied a local lord, or even the local guards. If she wanted to get her hands on a decent blade, she would need to look like someone that wasn't liable to stick it into the first person that crossed her path.

    And that suited Alexandra just fine, because she wasn't concerned about the practicalities of buying a weapon right now. All she was concerned about was getting out of these rags and taking a long hot soak in a scented bath. As she stared along the road towards The Royal Cedar Baths, Alexandra had to take a deep breath in preparation; she knew that the women that worked in these places would immediately shoo her.

    This isn't the time or place for a sob story, so I'll need a different approach. I think it's time to go for something a little bit crazy... Ah, yes. This should help!

    Alexandra knelt down and picked up a curved piece of blue glass, probably from a bottle or something similar. She spat on it, disgusting herself at the vulgarity of the act, before rubbing it on her rags just enough to restore some shine to it. She then ripped off a piece of cloth from the bottom of her dress and plaited it, forcing the glass into the centre. She smirked and placed it carefully inside the top of her sack before heading for the bath house's entrance.

    Pushing the door open, Alex stepped into the inn's ornate entrance room. Without missing a beat, she strolled along the corridor, towards the desk at the far end. She walked with her nose held high and her walk full of purpose and dignity, carrying herself with an air that meant that the jobsworths on guard duty at the door didn't bother her. The young blonde woman on the desk, however, didn't give her such a free pass. Fortunately, the reception room was at the end of the corridor, which meant that she would have to make a considerable ruckus to draw the guards' attention to herself.

    "Ugh." She sneered at the raven-haired criminal and shook her head, "Look, I'm fed up of telling you and your disgusting homeless friends this. Just because we have empty rooms, it doesn't mean that you can stay in them for free. This isn't a monastery and I am not the fri-urk!"

    Alexandra reached across the desk and grabbed the woman's gold locket, yanking it harshly and bringing the blonde face-to-face with her. She cleared her throat, intentionally coughing into the girl's face and then put on an affected Slavic accent. "I am not who you think I am. If you knew who I was then you would not be speaking to me like this, and if my father knew what you had said then you would find yourself speaking to anyone ever again." She loosened her grip, allowing the woman to breathe again before continuing in a stern voice, "I am Lady Amelia Bonhoeffer, of the Fallhurst Bonhoeffers. My father is Lord Edwin Bonhoeffer, although you may know him better was Edwin the Kind." Something about the friendly epithet made the blonde girl relax slightly and she even smiled. Alexandra responded with a cruel smile of her own and tightened her grip on the locket once more, digging her filthy nails into the girl's cream-coloured skin. "I can only assume that you're not from Fallhurst, or you would understand that the people there have a love of ironic nicknames..."

    The blonde girl began clawing at her throat, with her eyes bulging and her skin reddening. Alex let go, allowing her to gasp, whilst turning her head to see that the guards by the doors weren't even looking in their direction. No doubt these men were too weak or cowardly to be proper mercenaries, but just about strong enough to convince a bath house that they would be up to the task. "As you know nothing of my home, or of my father, I assume you know nothing of me, either. I am the only child of Lord Bonhoeffer and, many months ago, I was beset upon by robbers and bandits, who kidnapped me and brought me to this place. Whilst here, in Islesbury, the idiots were caught by the local guard, who mistook me for one of their rank, imprisoning me with them. I wrote to my father and he sent word back, telling your local lords exactly what he thought of them. I was promptly released, and given this." Alex opened up her sack and took out the blue glass, woven into tattered rags. Flashing it so that it glistened in the light for a moment, before stuffing it back into her sack. "It is the mark of my family, and it has been accepted by your lords as proof of who I am. Right now, my father's best men ride to Islesbury to escort me home, but I will bathe before then, so that I may look the part of a noble lord's daughter."

    Alex stepped back and placed one hand on her hip, "So, girl, who are you to deny me?"

    "I, well, um," she stammered, her breathing still a little laboured. "If your father is a wealthy lord then I am sure he was sent you coin for these things. I am sure that, after such a misunderstanding, the lords themselves would have donated their gold to your cause, that your father might reimburse them later..."

    Damn it. I guess she isn't going to go down easily.

    Opening the sack, Alexandra took ten gold coins from her purse and firmly slammed them down on the counter. "I have money to pay, as you can see, but after the way that you treated me, I will not be paying you today. If you wish to refuse, please know that I will be telling me father and he will be very interested to know more about this little incident." Alex flashed her best wicked grin, "I'm sure I don't need to tell you just how my father earned his title as Edwin 'the Kind', do I?"

    "N-no," replied the woman as she tenderly rubbed at the red marks on her delicate neck. "It would be our pleasure to accommodate you here today, Lady Amelia. I will inform one of our ladies in waiting to draw the bath water whilst you change. P-please, follow me." It was only when the woman stood up that Alex realised just how short she was. Alexandra was a bit on the short side, but this woman was a good two or three inches shorter still. It was no surprise that she had given in to the threats so easily.


    The best part of an hour later, Lady Amelia Bonhoeffer emerged from The Royal Cedar, smelling of roses and lavender, whilst also dressed in her new clothes, having been very glad to leave her sandals and tattered rags behind. The baths had even provided her with a shoulder pouch to hold her spare undergarments, purse, and Bonhoeffer family mark. She had considered ditching the "mark" now, but thought that it may prove useful again at some stage.

    Alexandra then quickly found herself an armourer. It wasn't a shop that she was familiar with and it must have opened whilst she was serving time, but it stocked all manner of weapons and the quality of them was superb. She found a small steel knife with a curved tip and ivory handle. It was expensive, but she was convinced that it was worth every coin. After all, this would be Alexandra's weapon of choice for situations when her own life was on the line, so it needed to be up to the task. She also picked up a cheap oak bow, and a quiver full of arrows. With a bit of flirting, playing upon the wandering eyes of the middle-aged shop owner, she was able to blag herself a second quiver for free, all of which left her with about thirty pieces of gold.

    After convincing Narshal to spare some extra coin, Alex had decided that she would be spending it in three places at most. The first was the bath house, where she had managed to avoid spending any coin whatsoever. The second was the armourer and, with thirty coins left, the final place was a building that had always fascinated Alexandra, even if she had never set foot in it before. As a liar, a thief and a general rogue, Alexandra could sneak into any number of buildings and often sneaked back out with more than she took in, but even the best thieves know that there are places where skill will not save you. The Ebony Belltower was one such place.

    True to its name, The Ebony Belltower consisted of a large black column, atop which a silver bell sat to ring out the hour. More than this, though, its ground floor was home to a rare sight in any city, and especially rare in the docks. It was a magic shop. The kind of place typically run by a retired wizard, growing fat on mass-produced potions of temporary strength and the occasional sale of a magic trinket from his adventuring days. Items in these kinds of shops were rarely cheap, but it was difficult to find scrolls or potions elsewhere that were as effective, whilst the magical rings were almost impossible to find without going on an adventure of one's one. Naturally, too, these shops were well-defended, not just by their owners, but also by a variety of traps and runes, to ensure that all visitors to the store would pay the top price for their purchases. Magical shops, especially ones run by magi, just couldn't be robbed. Anyone that tried was caught and imprisoned if they were lucky, whilst the owners sometimes dealt with the more unfortunate thieves in their own way.

    Alex could see enchanted rings and boots, along with arrows and swords, but she wasn't here for weapons or armour. She wasn't here for potions either, as, in her experience, they tended to be stored in fragile glass vials that broke too easily and weighed too much. No, Alex was here for a scroll. Whilst incarcerated, she had been given plenty of time to think, and she came to conclude that learning a little magic might go a long way. If she returned with a magic ring or, amusingly enough, an actual pair of magic boots, then it might draw too much attention to her. It might also draw the wrong kind of attention if another member of the group decided that they would be better served by a pair of hasted boots, whilst a scroll would crumble upon being mastered. Then the magic would be within the raven-haired girl, where no-one would be able to take it away from her.

    The prices were steep, as she expected them to be. Even the single-use scrolls were costing a minimum of five gold pieces, so the thirty coins that she had left may not be enough to buy a scroll as potent as she had hoped. Ideally, Alex wanted a scroll of invisibility, but the permanent scroll would cost more than twice the amount of money she had left. The cheapest permanent scrolls were for research purposes, allowing the user to translate magical and non-magical texts without having to master the language in which it was written. These scrolls were still twenty coins a piece and, whilst Alex could see that they might have some worth, she couldn't justify spending that sort of money on something so minor. She would need to spend all of her remaining coins on this scroll to get something worthwhile, or she would be left with a glorified party trick in the form of a minor burst of coloured sparks, or a bright magical light.

    All the scrolls were in trays and baskets on a table top, and Alex worked her way along them until she found a few that would cost thirty coins to purchase. She wasn't really looking for an attacking spell, but with so little available, she might have to settle. There were spells here that she could dismiss immediately, as their purposes were for protecting items and people against scrying, or to magically lock/unlock doors and items. Again, they were useful but also rather mundane and definitely not what Alex was after right now. As she continued to leaf through the scrolls, she found one that immediately appealed to her. So much so, that Alex even gave a little gasp as she pulled it from the basket and walked across to where the wizard, who didn't look that old, was writing out a new scroll.

    He held his hand up to stop the girl from speaking and then continued to write for a further five minutes. Only when he had finished did he look up and take the scroll from her. "That will be thirty gold pieces," he said, without a hint of warmth or humour to his voice.

    "I'll give you twenty," replied Alex. She couldn't steal here, but there was nothing stopping her from trying to get a discount the old-fashioned way. She leaned forwards onto the desk, propping herself up on her elbows and making the most of the low-cut blouse, with her cleavage at eye-level for the mage. "What do you say, big guy? Twenty bucks and a kiss?" She giggled coyly and shot a wink at the older man.

    "Thirty gold pieces," repeated the mage. "My prices are non-negotiable, and your bosom is nothing so spectacular that I haven't seen better before. Compared to a succubus, you are as flat-chested as a child. Now then, you can either pay me thirty pieces for that scroll and be on your way, or you can be on your way anyway. The choice is yours and I'll be glad for whichever one you pick. Harlot."

    Alexandra huffed indignantly and slammed the thirty coins on the table, before snatching the scroll from the wizard and stomping out of the shop. She was so filled with anger that she failed to hear his "Thank you, please come again," a phrase that would surely have only angered her further at this point. Once outside, she stuffed the scroll into her bag and began ranting to herself.

    Who the hell does he think he is? I'll make him pay for that! I'll come back here when I'm a powerful sorceress and then we'll see what he makes of me! The bastard is going to suffer, and I'm going to enjoy making him suffer...

    She was barely twenty feet from the belltower when it began to chime loudly. It had been about two hours since Alexandra last saw Narshal, and probably about three hours since he let his new purchases loose in Islesbury. There wasn't time to try learning her first spell now as the rest of the group was almost certainly going to be waiting for her. She walked at a brisk pace across the docks and back into The Limping Weasel, looking around for her fellow convicts and hoping that hey hadn't left without her already...

    [OOC: I'd like for Alex to be the last/one of the last to return, so Alex will be "busy" doing the things in this roleplay until most of the group has returned to the pub with Narshal. Once that happens, then just assume that she walks in and begins looking around for the group, and I'll pick up from there.]
  6. Dot was sitting on the ground while listening to Marshal speak about..things..
    He knew it might've been childish, but he had finally gotten out of jail, and he was enjoying everything around him.

    "In this Satchel, you will find 100 gold pieces."

    Let's attention was grabbed when he heard about money. Apparently he needed to buy clothes and equipment. Dot agreed with that one, though no clothing could replace his scarf, which was taken by the guards and never returned...

    Dot watched as Narshal walked towards
    "The Limping Weasel," and looked into the satchel as Narshal walked inside. There, true enough, were 100 gold pieces.

    "I'm gonna have fun with this." Dot said to himself, as he got up and started walking towards the various shops and merchants.


    About a half an hour later, Dot walked out of a Black Smithery, fully equipped, and holding a half eaten loaf of bread. He had used every single gold piece to equip himself with
    a Leather shirt 5g pants 4g and shoes 6g. 2 belts 7g each that hold; 2 knife sheaths 2g each and a mini bag 7g. 2 Bronze knives 10g each. A Scroll of Minor Healing 15g, (From some really shady guy..) 3 Herbs 5g each that are supposedly good for healing, and a large loaf of bread with sesame seeds 10g.

    Dot happily munched on his bread as he made his way to the Limping Weasel.
    On his way he saw Anastatia, he waved to her, smiling. He was doing his best to get her attention while not saying anything, for two reasons. One, he didn't know her name, and two, he was eating!
    #6 Enthriper, Aug 6, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2014
  7. BEHRUN - RISING, brown There was no ceremony when they let him out, barely a word exchanged as they went back on the promise they had hissed at him over and over through the door of his cell. He was never getting out. He would rot in there forever. The chains would hold tight to his wings, always uncomfortable, until they shrunk away into oblivion and he was left forever stranded, deep underground. Even the Devil would not be able to find him down here. He was never getting out.

    Now Behrun laughed at them as they unlocked his door and pulled him roughly out, spun in circles as they pushed him down the hallway, and he bounced from one to another as they herded him forward. His tongue slipped out of his mouth, wagging back and forth like a vulgar worm. It was only the promise of a sound reprimand from their superior officers that kept them from striking him now. He must be delivered in good condition to his new master. As good of a condition as could ever be obtained in this pestilential prison.

    It grew steadily lighter as they rose through the levels of darkness, as the smoke stains on the wall from the countless glowing torches became fewer and fewer. They were replaced by windows, pipes that ran down from the surface and let just a taste of light reach those who were blessed enough to be granted it. Behrun turned around suddenly, determined to look back the way he had came, but one of the guards reached out and grabbed one of the chains that wrapped around his wings, keeping them closely and uncomfortably pinned to his back. One ragged feather ripped out, and another guard scooped it up, twirling it before his eyes.

    Behrun stumbled, finally catching a glance of the darkness behind him. He paused briefly, nodding his head to bid it a polite goodbye, but the guard that had yet to release his wing-chains did not pause. He was yanked off of his feet, thin arms and legs unable to resist the mass of the well-fed, well-cared-for guard.

    They dragged him the rest of the way to the surface, his heels bouncing off of every uneven stone on the floor.

    Behrun was not sorry to be leaving. He had seen every Face this place had to offer, and he did not like them. There were no Faces down here that reveled in life, only ones that aimed to suppress it. Those Faces had done everything in their power to ensure that he forgot just what it meant to be alive, and Behrun was not ashamed to admit that he had succumbed to their brokenhearted whispers. Anyone who had the ears to hear would have folded as well, and anyone who did not would never truly know what it meant to be alive, either.

    And then they were at the top. The guards shoved him back to his feet, and the Captain barely glanced up from her paperwork before she pressed the button to open the doors to the outside world.

    And then they were out.

    Freedom- Of A Sort, goldenrod At the sight of the sky his wings flared unconsciously. He had never forgotten the Face of Flight, never forgotten the way it sang inside him as the air rushed past his face, and his wings lifted him heavenwards on a circle of warm air. For one moment he thought he was free.

    But the wing chains brought his soaring mind quickly back to earth. His wings flared suddenly, all chains forgotten, but they pressed against him, and the pain in his shoulders nearly brought him to his knees. A tremor passed through his body, causing his wings to shake behind him, and the chains to clink together like bells.

    There were six others around him, all of them nearly as dazzled by the Face of the Sky as Behrun himself. Except for one, the man who was so different from the rest of them. His face spoke of disinterest, but his actions spoke otherwise. He cared more about them than he was willing to admit. Behrun’s head tilted far to the side, almost catlike, and the pain in his wings was briefly forgotten.

    He received the bag of coins without a trace of surprise, and he pulled out one of the pieces of gold, licking it curiously. Metal flooded through his mouth, even as two of the girls and a young man sheared away from their group, making their way in various directions. Behrun, however, had no real interest in the money. He moved only far enough away to seat himself in the shade of a dilapidated building, one hand on the bag, the other tugging absentmindedly at the wing chains on his back.

    They had told him he was going to be free as a bird. The irony left a bitter taste in his mouth almost to match the coin, and caused a twisting in his gut. Free as a bird, winging its way across the sky. His wings fluttered, able to move no more than an inch.

    Yes. Freedom.

    Of a sort.

    Eventually, Behrun was left with nothing to do but stand up and move away from the wall. He had been ignored by the people passing by, despite the gold in the bag and his obvious lack of attention. Curious. Perhaps this gold truly was meant to be spent.

    He worked his way slowly from the slums towards the more luxurious parts of Islesbury, fascinated by the changes in the people as he worked his way up in class. At first they watched him with a wary eye, scrutinizing his chains, and the bag looped around his waist. Further up, the people did not even look at him, each of them lost in their own world. He finally came to a stop at the place where the people purposefully ignored him, glancing at him out of the corners of their eye to make sure that he wasn’t going to infect them with some sort of grime disease.

    He did not dare enter the clothing shops there, certain that no one would accommodate him, a strange being with wild dark hair and a prisoner's clothes, even if he had the money to pay. So he worked his way back down until he finally found a neat little shop, relatively large, but comparatively empty.

    The Knot, lightblue They noticed him as soon as he entered the door, his action setting off a small bell that was hung for just such a purpose. Almost immediately they all glanced away, occupying themselves with anything handy. But they were too empty to ignore him for very long, and finally one of the older staff members pushed the new recruit in his direction. She stumbled in his direction, glanced around for anyone to save her, and then finally approached him.

    “Can I help you, sir?”
    It seemed that the title of respect slipped out by habit as much as anything.

    “I need new clothes. You can do that, right?” A faint smile danced over his lips, but the young woman did not really seem to notice.

    She drew herself up, determined to live up to her job title. “Can you pay?” she asked cooly.

    Behrun nodded, extracting a piece of gold from the bag around his waist. he handed it over for her inspection. She took it, surprise written on her face, and scrutinized it briefly, almost as though expecting to see that it was made of paper. However, eventually she was forced to hand it back, unable to find anything wrong with it. “Right this way... sir.”

    As they walked over, her eyes kept straying to his wings, and the giant rip in the back of his shirt that allowed his wings relative freedom. Even by his standards it was an impossibly shoddy piece of clothing, and had frayed uncontrollably.

    The young lady guided him to their selection of men’s pants, quickly said, “Here you are,” and tried to walk away. Behrun called her back before she could complete her escape.

    “I’m going to need a custom-made shirt, as well.”

    “Very well,” she replied, relieved, and hurried away to get the seamstress.

    The seamstress was a short, rather plump woman, and nowhere near as judgmental as the floor staff. It only took her a single glance to gather what she would be doing. She grabbed his arm with a tight hand, and pulled him over to a stand, where she quickly began taking measurements. Most of the time it didn't’ really seem as though she was reading the numbers, only running the tape measure over various parts of his body. However, as suddenly as she had appeared before she now disappeared, and then was back again a moment later with a small stack of pants.

    “I’ll be back with your shirt soon,” she said. “Changing rooms are over there.”

    Behrun was done selecting two pairs of pants long before the seamstress returned to him, but he remained in an out of the way corner, quietly and unobtrusively studying the other various customers that came to The Knot. Most of them belonged to the upper middle class, taking advantage of the fine items at a relatively cheap price. A few, like him, wandered in from the lower levels of society. Those who could not present coin upon entrance were quickly shooed, while those who could were reluctantly served.

    Finally the seamstress returned to him, a shirt folded in her hands. She dragged him over to the mirror, pulled off his ruined top to reveal a bone-thin torso, before handing him the shirt.

    It was like nothing Behrun had ever seen before. Rather than being a shirt with two slits up the back, leaving the center piece of fabric to flap about his back, it was a shirt without a back at all. The older woman quickly guided him to step into the waist, held together in teh back by a set of laces. He pulled it up over his hips, slid his arms into the sleeves, and then tied two cords together behind his neck.

    Even with the chains preventing him from moving his wings the shirt was comfortable, in no way impacting the movement of his shoulders or wings. The laces behind his back tightened easily, even without him being able to see it, so that the shirt clung well to his torso. However, there was enough slack in the laces to show that, even when he put more weight on his body, the shirt would still be able to fit him. The yellowed leather neatly complimented his dark skin, and Behrun could not help but smile with pleasure at his own reflection in the mirror.

    "Thank you," he whispered.

    The seamstress clicked her tongue, pinned up the sleeves so that they just touched the farthest part of his wrist, and then ordered him to take it off again. Behrun obliged, putting on his tattered rags again with a grimace.

    While the seamstress went back to make the changes Behrun selected a cheap pair of shoes that would at least do better at protecting his feet than the prisoner’s sandals he wore. However, the seamstress was taking a remarkably long time to finish her edits. Behrun once more returned to his corner, the two pairs of pants over his arms, the shoed clasped in one hand.

    Finally she emerged, and to Behrun’s great surprise she was carrying two shirts, one the tan, and the other a deep black, darker even than his hair. She handed them over, a mischievous twinkle in her eyes, and a satisfied smile tugging at the corner of her lips.

    The clothes came to over two thirds of his available gold, but considering the fact that two of the items had been hand-tailored just for him the price was more than reasonable. He left the shop wearing the yellow shirt and brown pants, with the shoes on his feet. At the first trash can he spotted, Behrun dropped the prisoner’s clothes in, more than glad to get rid of the items. However, he chose to keep the sandals, and he put them in the small bag with the other shirt and pair of pants.

    There was only one more stop he wanted to make before returning to the Limping Weasel. The smithy was right on the edge of the poor district, and the rough sideboarding revealed that the place was only a week or two of bad business away from closing down. There he was able to purchase a rather large, serrated knife from the gruff smith, which left Behrun with only five gold. Uncertain as to whether or not he would have to pay for his meal this evening, he chose to hold onto the five, rather than try and purchase one last item on his way back.

    He was not the first of this strange new group to arrive back at their destination, but it appeared that he was not to be the last, either. Behrun was forced to turn sideways to pass through the door to avoid having his wings catch on the door.

    It seemed this far south that avians of any sort were not a common occurrence, as everyone in the inn was bound to the ground. That almost certainly meant that every single bed in the place would be a human bed. Any avian with even remotely fragile and bulky wings, which Behrun’s most certainly were, would not be able to sleep on a standard flat, hard bed. Without something to cradle his wings, even without the chains, the pressure to his wings would be almost unbearable. It looked as though he was going to be spending another restless night on his stomach. By this point he should have been used to it, but how he missed the nests of his past.

    Sighing, Behrun shook his head, the chains on his wings rattling slightly, before making his way over to Narshal, Dot, and Anastasia.
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  8. It was a pity, truly. Collective gasps, and sounds of awe filled the air, over such a sight that the partial elven girl was unable to see. Sunlight was a thing of the past, one she remembered hazily, her memories having faded from the dark fate she had received that night she was imprisoned. However, there was a faint light visible to the girl, if only through her faintly usable eye, and that was enough to bring a shred of hope. A hope for freedom. A hope for a new beginning. A new beginning...that started her off as a slave. With that thought, the shred of hope dampened, shriveling up as it fell through her grasp, almost completely going up in flames when she heard her new owner take a step forward. From what she could tell through the sound of the step and the movements he made following, he seemed gruff. Tough. Perhaps even dangerous, but not uncaring. That didn't stop her own disdain towards the man though. He was still a slaver, after all.

    That opinion stayed solid, but faltered a bit moments later as she felt something slightly heavy fall into her hand, the bit of coloration she could see from her good eye being a blob of a weathered shade of brown. A jingle accompanied this, and she found herself falling into disbelief, Lore's eyes widening as she looked up to where the man was, her eyes missing his, yet still conveying her shock. It was uncommon for slavers to give money, and an amount such as this? Unheard of. Needless to say, Lore was entirely confused when she was actually given the money to spend on herself; a luxury she hadn't had in her home before her imprisonment.

    Not that she was complaining. A bath and a trip to the tailors was definitely a need. After all, the grime covered girl was highly positive that she smelled of the grotesque prison, which was most likely enough to make a normal person recoil in disgust. With that thought, she nodded to the man, the one who had been called 'Narshal,' by the prison guards, thanking him for this little bit of luxury he had given her. Without another thought, the girl set off to the streets, using the sounds to navigate her way to the small marketplace, where she knew she would have luck in finding what she needed. 'Perhaps I can even find a small dagger to keep on my person. He did say to buy a weapon, and I don't want to be unarmed for whatever the man may have up his sleeve. For all we know, this could be the calm before a storm of hell and pain. I mean, it could be possible that he is using this to gain our trust...Hm. After all, why would a slaver give his...pets...such an amount of coin?" she rationalized, suddenly becoming painfully aware of the possibilities that may overcome her future.

    With this thought in mind, the woman became lost in her listening, bumping into a storekeeper with a slight 'oomph', which resulted in the ever popular slur of 'half-breed' falling from the man's mouth. With a snarky grin, Lore simply shook her head, speaking softly for such a darkly humorous grin. "Clever name. Come up with it yourself?" she asked, snorting slightly as the man stumbled across his words, before calling her an insolent bitch; the name rolling off her shoulders. "You must be a minstrel with such words," she added, chuckling. The man, unhappily, seemed to let his anger get ahold of him, raising his hand threateningly. Hearing the sound of the appendage sweeping through the air, she readied herself for a hit, never feeling it happen. A cowardly whimper raised from the shopkeeper's lips, and an apology resounded, the man retreating back to his fruit stand.

    A small question from an elderly voice sent the half elf into shock though, a smile fleetingly playing upon her lips. She hadn't expected the man to be afraid of such a tiny sounding woman, but quickly her mind was put to ease as she realized what the woman had said, shaking her head at the question. "No ma'am. Your son-in-law hadn't been bothering me. I was just on my way to find a tailors," she explained, before hearing a cute giggle from the tiny elder. "Ah, well, come with me. It just so happens I know a tailor. She works from her home, but I'm sure she would have something for you. She's a partial elf, as yourself," explained the woman, pulling the girl through the streets as she came upon a door, the dark color of it clouding Lore's vision. With a few knocks and exchanged words, they looked over Lore's frame, simply assuming her rags were from living in the slums. This brought upon the question of money, which left the Elven girl to explain her situation while the two old women sent her to try clothing on behind a screen. No question of the story, however, was brought up, as Lore was in the company of another half-elf. One who understood how easily one of their kind could be blamed for something as the girl had gone through, especially under such circumstances.

    This story was short-lived, though, as they decided on a simple elven robe, the dark green fabric hanging in a long skirt that gave enough flow to allow ease of movement. The sleeves were fair as well, being odd and long, hanging over the girls fingers in a traditional elven fashion. However, the tops of the sleeves did not exist, and they were held to the girl's upper arm by being attached to the bodice at the side, hanging off her lightly freckled shoulders. On her torso, she had a simple thick leather bustier to wear, to hold the dress on and lightly armor her chest. At forty gold with a pair of lace up brown boots, this was a steal, and she bought it with a slight happiness, leaving the two women with a deeply meant thank you and a simple knapsack to carry her new clothing in.

    Too bad she didn't ask for directions to the nearest bathhouse. Hearing the voice of a fellow prisoner, she followed, hoping maybe to catch their attention as to ask for their help. Nevertheless, she didn't have a need to, being led to the bathhouse anyways as she was treated to a simple show, mentally chuckling at the clever woman's ability to get her way into the place without paying a single coin. However, having less luck, Lore ended up paying twenty gold to bribe her way in, leaving her with forty coins for buying herself a decent dagger and possibly, food. With a slight regret, but a need, she took her time freshening up, washing her long locks as she slowly became less disgusting, finally blending in with other people when she finished. Changed, with her long hair clean and tied back at the bottom with a small ribbon she made from the burlap sack she carried her clothes in, Lore felt comfortable..almost. As comfortable as she could be in this situation.

    Leaving after Alexandra had, she finally made her way to a small merchants caravan that had set up in the markets, learning through speaking to him that he had daggers for sale, ones he had picked up from 'out of city', or something. She hadn't been paying attention, instead allowing her fingers to graze the daggers he had for sale, feeling for which one would be comfortable. Her hand slipped, though, and she found herself grinning, picking up the smooth object said appendage had landed upon. It was a small ocarina, an instrument she had been taught about when she was but a small child. Using the last of the money that she was willing to use, she bought a simple dagger and sheath, which hid well beneath her skirts, and the small instrument, which she hung around her neck with a piece of string she had gotten from the man. Taking it as she walked away, keeping note of the changing colors around her as she made sure not to run into anyone, she played with the instrument for a moment, a small smile on her lips, before she tucked it away between her cleavage and her bustier, hearing the sounds of rowdy men and drinking. Sounds anyone would be familiar with, even if they hadn't heard them in so long.

    Proving to be a challenge, Lore simply walked inside the place, her head whipping from side to side as she was jostled, clearly disoriented because of all of the sounds. "Shit," she muttered, her hand reaching out to land on a table, her fingers following the wood as she moved from table to table, waiting to hear a possible sound from another, anything to alert the girl to where she needed to be. "Um. Can you possibly direct me to a man who may be sitting alone..uh..with maybe more people with him. A stoic man. Perhaps taller, with gruff features. He might seem shady, from what I can tell," she explained with a soft, kindly smile, having no idea she had somehow ended up speaking to the very man she was searching for. However, when he responded, the smile soured, and a dark, nearly shameful look overtook her features, obvious dislike for the man evident in her gestures. "Hm. Seems I found you," she said simply, handing him back the pouch that contained the remains of her money, a simple amount of twenty gold dropping to the table in front of the man as she took a seat, her expression dropping to one of no expression at all, her focus turning to the pain in her ears from the sounds that bombarded her, 'blinding' her further, so to speak.
    #8 Ambre, Aug 8, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2014
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Lucian had to keep himself from dozing off. He was utterly bored with his master's 'talk' simply because it held no interest. He noticed that the other outlaws that stood beside him were doing the same, only listening to bits and pieces and picking out the information that was essential. Like the part about money and where to meet their new lord.
    The Limping Weasel... How fitting of a name for a lowly pub.

    As soon as Lucian was handed his portion of money, he was already walking away. He had things to do and they wouldn't get done if he just stood around listening. Unlike many others, he wasn't mad about being owned, it made things more... Interesting. Lucian loved excitement and thrived to find or discover new things daily. Like how long could the guards stand his high pitched singing before they snapped or where each body part went in the being's body.

    He found himself at the grave of an old... Friend. A man he had known that he actually liked, which was a shock to even himself because he hated everyone! Or so he thought until he found the man cutting open the carcass of some roadkill. Lucian concentrated on the thing buried deep in the dirt, it had been there since a year before those ruffians caught up to him and then entrapped him in a prison. Soon enough, the earth shook in front of him. A bony hand ripped through the solid ground and pulled the rest of its body from out of the earth. A massive grin graced his lips before he hugged the skeleton.
    "Frank, so good to see you and if I must say, you look far better dead than alive." Lucian complimented as he let go. The skeletons jaw shook as it tried to speak back, something only fellow necromancers or novice mediums could hear, making Lucian look even madder than a hatter when he replied back to the thing. "Come along now, we have much to do!"

    Humans all around gawked openly, watching from a distance in fear and never daring to approach the delusional man and his skeleton. Lucian headed into a clothing shop and searched around for something to wear. The shop keepers glanced at each other worriedly as they watched Lucian, hoping he wouldn't try to steal anything and knowing that they'd be to scared to stop him. he picked up a few things from the selves; a pair of black pants, a white button-up shirt, a brown leather belt and a long cloak-like black jacket without a hood that all looked his size. He didn't pick up any socks or shoes, viewing the items worthless and unneeded unless used as a weapon. Lucian was about to ask how much when the lady at the counter began to panic.
    "I-I-I will let you have them all for fifteen coins!" She spoke in a rushed tone. Lucian blinked before handing her ten coins and then left with his new clothes, Frank following after him.
    What a strange lady.

    Lucian decided the next important thing was a weapon of some sort, he couldn't just rely on his necromancy every time. He headed to the closest blacksmith to see if he had anything that would catch his eye.
    "Tell me if anythin' catches your eye." The blacksmith told him, not intimated by Frank at all. Lucian looked around, searching for something worth buying. He wasn't interested in anything usual or boring, he wanted something sharp, quick to use and exciting. About to lose hope, he scans the smith's projects once more before they land on a tool that usual belongs to doctors. He picked it up, examined it and picked up another before handing it to the man. The black smith raised an eyebrow in question but didn't say anything to risk the deal. "Two *orbitoclasts, it will cost ye twenty doubloons, I will add this leather pouch in for five more." He handed the man is money and took his tools and pouch with a sadistic smirk. Lucian knew he was going to lose or break one later in life so he bought two, thinking it a wise choice.

    He clipped the pouch on his belt before sliding the orbitoclasts inside and closing it up. Lucian had fifty five coins left to spend. Next, Lucian headed to the closest magic shop to look around. The wizard blinked in surprise at Frank before grinning creepily at Lucian.
    "Do you have any unique spells that would interest me?" He asks the wizard with a knowing smile. The man of magic grins back at Lucian with a twinkle of mischief in his eyes.
    "I might but it will cost you." Lucian walked up to the counter.
    "What do you have?" The man gets out a few books before handing them to him. Lucian takes them and looks them over, handing only two of them back to buy and dismissing the rest back on the counter.
    "Ah, nice choice mage. That will be thirty for the
    crow shape shifting book and fifteen for the sleep spell book." Lucian handed him forty five coins and took the books off his hands.
    "Anything I need to know?"
    "Both spells will only last for a limited time, the time will increase the more you use them." With that, Lucian left to find a body of water to clean himself up in and then had fifteen coins left for food.

    Lucian found a small lake to wash up in and put his new clothes on after he was dry, putting his belt with his weapon on before heading barefoot towards the marketplace and spending ten coins on a loaf of plain bread. He put the remainder of his money (five coins) and bread in his pouch for later before heading to the meeting place. He headed to the Limping Weasel and searched for his master, finding an elf girl heading towards the burly man and followed along, making sure not to bump into the fragile thing out of not caring enough. Lucian took a seat beside the girl and away from the man named Narshal out of 'respect'.

    * Orbitoclasts were "ice pick" like tools used to do lobotomies (ice pick lobotomy).
  10. Anastatia continued walking through the square, taking care not to bump into anyone on her way. She didn't want to be seen as a pickpocket. That would be the worst way to start her new life, being accused of stealing when she was simply having a nice walk. Although, she was feeling a bit peckish. Maybe she would get something to eat before she returned to her master. She shuddered. She was never going to get used to that word and the connotations it possessed.

    She stopped into a bakery and grabbed a few loaves of bread, slipping one under her arm unnoticed before she paid and left. She was saving that for later, but right now, she needed real food. She had eaten prisoner food for to long, and even this stale bread she bough cheap would taste better than anything she ate in that place. As she left, she saw another one of the slaves walking about, and he waved to her. She tried to remember his name...Dot, was it? before she walked over and smiled. "Hello! I was just about to pop into a pub for lunch. Care to join me? You'll have to pay for your own, of course, but it would be nice to have some company before we return."
  11. Dot placed the remains of his loaf of bread into his bag. He looked back at Anastatia, wiping crumbs off of his cheeks and mouth.

    "Uh, yeah sure!" Dot said, enthusiastically. Dot turned and pointed at The Limping Weasel.
    "This is the place, right?" He asked, looking at Anastatia out of the corners of his eyes. He had a slight grin. His free hand was placed on his hip, near one of his Knives.

    "This lady is one of my fellow slaves? Hmm.. I wonder if she's got any skill with that sword.."
    Dot thought to himself, as he was pointing to The Limping Weasel.
  12. Alexandra pushed open The Limping Weasel's main door and stepped back into the dank, dark inn. She held the door open for a moment, letting the natural light frame her figure as a cool gust tousled her raven locks and, in doing so, wafted the fresh scents of rose and lavender into the foul-smelling inn. By now, almost every pair of male eyes were either looking at her, or looking for her, having caught her scent in the air, whilst standing in the doorway was an easy way to make sure that their gazes found her. She allowed herself a smile, turning slightly to one side and tossing her hair back, giving the men one last good look at her before she let the door slam shut behind her.

    That's it, Alex. They're all looking at you now, just like you knew they would. Funny how a change of clothes and a good wash can do wonders for a girl's confidence, and funnier still how every one of this beer-swilling thugs think that I only have eyes for them. Sorry, boys, but I'm taken... For now.

    Hm, speaking of which, where is Narshal? He was a lot easier to find this morning, when this place was a lot quieter. Maybe he's moved tables? Maybe he's left without me... I can only hope.

    "Hey there, little lady, you look lost," schmoozed one of the patrons as he hopped up from a table and moved across Alexandra, blocking her path. This man was a rather typical member of the docklands scenery; he was burly and broad-shouldered, with a weathered face and tanned skin from spending hours outside loading and unloading the boats here. He was a little under six feet tall, which still made him a giant by comparison to Alex, and, despite his prematurely bald head, his arms and chest were fantastically hairy. Alex briefly considered whether it would be possible to plait his chest hair before she was interrupted. "Well, princess, if you want to know what I'm hiding under my top, perhaps we can do a little trading, if you catch my drift. If show me yours then I reckon I could show you mine!"

    Alex closed her eyes and put on an oh-so-fake smile, "I'm sorry, I'm not sure that my husband would be too happy about that." She quickly glanced around to check that there wasn't anyone here that she or Robert had known before. Fortunately, she was safe.

    "Your husband, huh?" slurred the dockworker, "I can't believe that. There's no way I would ever let you out of my sight if we were together, darling. No, I'd never want you more than an arm's length away." As the man continued schmoozing, her reached out and put one arm around Alex's shoulders, tugging her in close to his chest and forcing the girl to endure the putrid mixture of his natural bodily musk and his ale breath. She wasn't sure which was worse, but she didn't intend upon studying either one for long enough to work out the answer.

    "Maybe my husband just knows me well enough to trust me?" she replied, forcefully lifting the dockworker's wrist off of her shoulder and letting his arm drop. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I must be getting back to him," she said, before spinning on her heels and pushing off into the main seating area of the inn. Being attractive had a lot of benefits, but it also came with its share of drawbacks and this was just one of them. There was no way that a girl like Alexandra would ever go for that sort of a man, but beer goggles gave men strange ideas about both their own attractiveness and the attractiveness of others. She shook her head, releasing another little burst of floral scents from her hair, before scanning the inn for any sign of Narshal.

    Where is he? I'm not even sure I really remember what he looked like, he looked like any other forty year old man that's fallen on hard times. Gruff, miserable, kind of dirty and greasy... Unfortunately, that's about the same as every other guy in here.

    Maybe I'll spot one of the others. There was a sickly girl, and a sickly guy, both of them looking utterly dreadful, then there was the hunchbacked guy, uh, hmm. I guess I should have paid more attention when I had the chance. I don't even know any of their names, anyway, but it's not as if standing here and shouting will help.

    Alexandra began picking her way through the crowded inn, deciding that the best thing to do was to walk through the middle. If she didn't spot the group on her way through, then they might spot her, assuming they were still here and hadn't left without her. Whilst she didn't see Narshal as the kind of man to just give someone a hundred and ten gold pieces and then never reclaim it, she did wonder about just how incompetent she had made herself look earlier. Perhaps she had overdone it, and Narshal had decided to just cut his losses on the girl? After all, he seemed to believe that she really was just Robert's lackey, so perhaps she had done a little too well at convincing him that she wasn't very useful.

    Really, it was a win-win situation. If Narshal had given up on her, then he would probably have "returned" her to the prison, but that would mean that they would need to find and capture her again, something that Alexandra had no intention of allowing to happen. She might not be able to leave Islesbury without any documentation, but she could make a comfortable life for herself within the city, as long as she kept to the shadows and stayed on the right side of the wrong people. On the other hand, if Narshal was still here somewhere, then she would soon be leaving this place behind and setting out into the rest of the world. Whilst the life of a slave held no joy for her, she was excited by the prospect of seeing what the world had to offer; she might even be able to find out just what Fallhurst is like firsthand, and whether there really is an Amelia Bonhoeffer that lives there. Perhaps it wouldn't be all that bad, and, assuming the other criminals were competent enough, at least there would be safety in numbers, as the open road was sure to be a lawless place filled with bandits and rogues of all sorts.

    As Alexandra let her mind wander with the possibilities of what the world outside of Islesbury might hold for her, she found herself moving towards a corner of the inn where there was one table, but it was being given a mixture of space and sneers by the other patrons. The air was immediately more tense around here and, as her eyes adjusted better to the candlelight Alex understood why.

    An Avian? This far south? It's no wonder that he's being given space, I'm surprised the locals haven't given him a friendly welcome... His feathers would surely bring a pretty penny on the black market... Wait, his wings are shackled... What's going on here?

    Alex blinked as she looked past the pair of shackled wings to spy Narshal and the sickly-looking pale girl. Was this Avian a part of their motley crew? She knew she had a habit of not always noticing the finer details of people that she wasn't interested in, but how did she manage to miss an Avian? The look on Narsha's face made it clear that he had seen Alexandra, so she approached the group and curtsied, taking the chance to assess the group before sitting down.

    So I guess that this Avian was the dark-skinned hunchback I saw earlier. I suppose that would explain why I didn't see him, since his wings were bound like that... I wonder if it hurts? The sickly girl still looks sickly, but at least she smells sweet, I guess I'll try to bunk with her if we have to share rooms. That pale kid is... ugh. He's still barefoot, that's disgusting. I'll bet he'd put them up on the table if it wasn't for the fact that Narshal might break him in two. Then there's those other two, they seem normal, but I'm sure there's more to them than that. Hm.

    Alexandra smiled and sat down at the table. "Hello again everyone," she said, smoothing out her blouse, "I hope I'm not too late. I don't know if Narshal explained, but I had a bit of trouble earlier, so it took me a little time to get myself sorted out." She looked around the table and tried to remember if this was everyone or not. As she did, she noticed the skeleton hanging up behind the pale kid and grimaced, why would an inn put something like that up as a decoration? It was just creepy, and she was sure that it was watching her with those hollow, dead eye holes. Clenching her jaw, the dark-haired girl looked back towards Narshal and tried to flash him a friendly smile, "So are we introducing ourselves now, or what? I don't mind going first, my name's Alexandra an-"

    "Alekshandra, huh?" said a slurred male voice from behind her, "That'sh a pretty name for a pretty girl." She cringed as a large, slightly sweaty hand came down to rest on her shoulder and she craned her head to see the man that had been hitting on her before, flanked by two of his friends. "My name'sh Caid'n and it'sh niche to meet you again. I guessh one of these guysh ish your hushband, haha, they're all sho puny, jusht forget whichever losher it ish and come with me. I'll shhow you what a real man'sh like. You'll never want to come back to theshe cowardsh after that."

    Alexandra took a deep breath and felt her blood begin to boil. If there was one thing she really despised, it was a guy that couldn't take no for an answer. She spoke through gritted teeth, but somehow every word came out clearly and precisely. "Caiden," she said, "I have no interest in you, so please leave me alone."

    "That'sh too bad, becaushe I'm intereshted in you!" shouted Caiden as he grabbed Alex and tried to pull her up out of her seat. As he yanked the girl, she kicked her legs out and knocked over the table and her chair, causing most of the group to rise to their feet as Narshal's drink was spilled onto Lucian's lap. Caiden saw this and began laughing, "Fwahaha, that wusshy kid'sh pisshed himshelf!"

    Looking across the table, Alex saw Lucian's stained trousers and took the chance to pull free as Caiden continued laughing. She moved past the sickly girl and stood near Narshal, looking to her "owner" for support at this early juncture, since he seemed like the most skilled fighter at the table.

    "Whoa! What the hell'sh that?" asked Caiden, lumbering forwards and kicking aside a chair as he approached Lucian, brushing him aside and moving towards Frank. "A shkeleton? What'sh thish doing here?" He stepped up to Frank and grab hold of one of the skeleton's arms, lifting it up and then letting it drop... Except it didn't. "Wh-what? That'sh a cool trick," laughed Caiden, sounding a little unsure now. He turned to his friends, "You guysh need to shee thish thing! It'sh almosht real!"

    "It creeps me out," muttered the shorter of Caiden's friends. The pair remaining where they stood, as the entire inn turned their attention to the rag-tag group sat in the back. "Forget the damn toy, Caid, just grab the bitch and we'll go. These others aren't worth our time."

    "You guysh are no fun," slurred Caiden as his bemused smile took on a sinister tone. He then spun back around and swung a fist towards Frank, slamming his knuckles into the skeleton's forehead and knocking it back onto the floor. "Shorry kid," said the thug, turning back towards Lucian, "I think I broke your doll."

    Caiden burst into laughter and turned around to face Alexandra again, holding up his fist and trying to flex his muscles to impress the girl. "Shee that, babe? Shtrength of ten men, me. Not like your ushelesh hushband, whichever one of theshe ratsh he ish." The thuggish dockworker stepped up towards Narshal, assuming him to be the husband, as he was the one that Alexandra had stood closest too. He was about to say something when he felt a bony finger tap him on the shoulder, causing him to growl angrily and turn around. "What'sh wrong with y-"

    Caiden's jaw hung open as silence filled the air. Frank was stood back up, staring at Caiden with his cold, dead eye sockets and maybe the slightest hint of a smile, although Alex wasn't sure if skeletons could smile. "The fuck'sh going on?" exclaimed the thug after a moment. He growled and slammed his head forwards, into Frank's, but this time, the skeleton stayed standing, with only its skull tipping back. Caiden reeled back, rubbing his forehead, the alcohol in his system had obviously affected his decision-making in a big way.

    With a blood-curdling clicking noise, Frank's head gradually tilted back down to its proper position, lifelessly gazing into Caiden's eyes once more. Alex shuddered at the sight, and the noise, muttering the word "Necromancer" quietly under her breath with as much contempt as she could muster.

    "Shit!" shouted Caiden's shorter friend. "Shit, shit, shit! Caid's picked a fight with a fucking necromancer!"

    "A necromancer?" enquired another voice from behind as half the men in the bar stood up at once. The words "necromancer", "sick", "freak", "unholy" and various other insults filled the air as the men stepped forwards together, staring down the group.

    Caiden's friends had gotten closer to their boss and were now supporting him, one holding him up by each arm, as they swayed under his weight. "Come on guysh!" he roared loudly, trying to take control of the mob that had formed. "Let'sh shhow theshe freaksh what happensh to corpshe-fuckersh in Ishleshbury! Get them!"

    Alex immediately reached for the dagger that she had purchased earlier and grabbed its ivory handle, preparing for a fight...
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