Cold Morning

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Reyga, Jan 8, 2014.

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  1. (OOC here)


    She came awake with a start, aching, the ground cold and damp and reeking underneath her. Her fist was clenched around an object, digging into her palm so hard it felt bruised, but she didn't let go. She pulled her left arm underneath her to sit up from where she lay on her stomach. Where was she, an alley? And the blood. She looked to her right, at the knife handle clenched in her fist, its hilt ornate and well made. Its blade buried deep.

    That night had been, like many nights, a blur of joyful noise and movement. Jenna was a dancer at The Pond, one of the busier taverns in town, and she loved the bustle of people on those full-house nights, and the jangling of the bells on her costume, and the encouraging racket of lutes and drums trying to be heard over the sounds of drunken merriment. She wore brightly dyed fabric, purple and green and gold, freckles on her face and shoulders and lithely muscular arms, her hair a mess of orange curls. Her skirt was layers and layers of gauzy fabric, crisscrossed and slitted to be a changing riot of colors as she danced.

    When her performance was over, she had settled in with a mug of mulled wine. A man had approached her, introduced himself as a great wizard! She had laughed at him. She had heard tales of wizards. Perhaps some of them were even true! But those were old, white-haired men in sweeping robes. Not this man. He was young, all slim and toned muscle, his dark hair well kept, his eyes bright and kind. She had flirted with him, laughed at his claims of magic and greatness, drank the wine he had bought her, and the memory blurred...

    Blood. She pulled herself to her knees, and stared at the man to her right, his eyes open and blank, sunken into a face she didn't recognize. The knife was buried in his belly, the knife she still held. She drew it out of his body, stared blankly at the blade and the blood that coated it. It was large and curved, wicked-looking. And thirsty. That thought popped unbidden into her head, thirsty.

    Hands shaking, she wiped the blood from the blade on the man's clothing. It was very fine clothing, high quality. His cloak was velvet, deep blue, and he wore rings on his fingers. She found her eyes drawn back to the knife. It was black, a smooth, deep red gem set into the pommel, handle wrapped in supple leather. And it was so thirsty. She couldn't stand it. She tore off a layer of her skirt and bundled the knife up in the gauzy purple fabric; she didn't want to see it, didn't want to touch it. She felt as if she came fully back to her senses as she scrambled to her feet and away from the body, and suddenly noticed that her arms and legs were bloody. She nearly screamed, was nearly sick, before she saw that the blood was her own, not the man's. There was broken glass on the ground, and she was crisscrossed with cuts, most only scratches, a few deeper, painful only now that she noticed them.

    She turned to put her back to him, breathing hard. She forced herself to be calm as she stepped gingerly toward the street and out of the alley, the bundle held under her arm. Her mind raced. The sky told her it was early, early morning. She shivered in the chill wind, the stones bitter cold on her feet. Her slippers were missing, not that they would have been much protection. Neither was her dancer's garb, thin and breezy, her shoulders and arms fully bared, plus a band of skin around her stomach. But she couldn't bring herself to touch the body again to take his cloak, or to have such a grisly souvenir.

    She picked a direction at random and walked slowly. She had no money for a room or even a drink to warm her up. She hoped only for a landmark to tell her where she was, as she walked barefoot down the street, and tried not to think about the man going cold behind her, or the knife she still held close, wrapped in fabric, or the gap in her memory that horrified her.
    #1 Reyga, Jan 8, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2014
  2. 'Alone at last' Gwen thought bitterly. The middle-aged man, a hulking, hairy fellow in a plain black tunic and deep brown pants, sighed and leaned heavily on the thin broom he used to sweep up the dust in his dark and tiny potion shop. It creeked slightly under his weight (as did most everything) and he grunted at the fast descending dust balls collecting in patches atop his freshly swept floors.

    Why did he even bother?

    Gwen rubbed his eyes which only accentuated the bags beneath them. He ought to get some sleep soon. His customers usually came during the night; shady cowards and unpleasent men they were, "Murderers, the whole lot of 'em.", he mumbled to himself and shook his head. He put the broom away, considering the floors a lost cause for the day. It was time to close up shop. It was too damn early to be awake - to which Gwen snorted - running this shop dealing mostly in poisons and noxious potions, he was practically nocturnal. Walking towards the front, he gingerly squeezed sideways pass shelves stacked and crowded with different sized bottles and jars filled with dark, murky-colored liquids towards the open entrance door. Outside, the pale sun was rising over the cold stone buildings and the smell of daytime, fresh and light, was beginning to creep into the city. It was a shame he'd sleep the entire day away only to wake up to surly, broke mercenaries and the biting chill of the night.

    Just as the last block of daylight was passing through his fast closing door, Gwen saw the distant flicker of a hazy figure stumbling out of an alleyway in the distance. He squinted his eyes, concerned but cautious as always, and opened the door only slightly. It creaked in protest on its broken frame. He took only one step outside and leaned to get a better view. Normally the tired shop owner wouldn't care; would turn back into his home safely with an apathetic grunt and find himself promptly in bed again, considering the person most likely a beggar or poor drunkard too plastered to have found his home before morning. But that was not the gait of an intoxicated man. It - She! , for her features became more clear as she limped closer up the street - looked to be in serious pain - at least, thats what he figured from her shivering frame and the blood that caked most of her body.

    Still, Gwen did not leave his doorstep. You could not be too careful in this, the darker parts of the city. Instead, he held firmly to the doorknob and took one more step out and gruffly called out to the bleeding woman down the street, hoping to catch her attention.
  3. Hearing the rough voice call out to her, Jenna looked up in surprise. A shop, open at this hour? And an enormous man standing in the doorway. Not about to question his presence at this hour, merely grateful for the opportunity, she hurried over to meet him, jingling softly from the bells that lined her skirt.

    "Could I... just come in for a moment to warm up?" She realized how strange she must look, in her dancing clothes, blood on her arms. She brushed one scratched up forearm off with a hand, the bundle held in the other, and blushed brightly under her freckles. "There was glass, I didn't see... it's not as bad as it looks, I just need a moment. Please."
  4. It had been the cold that woken him. The patchwork cloak done nothing but seemed to only given the appearance that it provided the comfort of warmth. He shouldn't complain, it was at least something. The young figure grunted and rolled over onto his side, curling up under the tattered fabric making an attempt towards sleep, but a brewing headache kept him conscious and annoyed. Even pretending then that he was comfortable on the makeshift bed of odd pieces of discarded clothing he'd picked up around the town did nothing but annoy him the more. No, he couldn't lay there no more. Temporarily the traveler had taken residence huddled up against the side of a building hidden further to the back of an alley where he could be sheltered away from eyes, an predators of the human kind. Suppose he could have just set himself up at the edge of town...He sighed. Nice plush grass instead of muddy, hard ground....Then again...He didn't have to worry as much with predators in town then the ones lingering out there.

    Finally, pale grey eyes peered up through the alley before the young male pushed himself up tiredly, groaning and aching all over. He needed to figure out what his plans were, if he should stay, go.... He growled to himself, the sound soft as he pressed palms against his temples. The throbbing behind his eyes were getting worse, he needed to get that out of the way before anything else. Begging took too long, he'd beg on days he would be too weak to move, days like this... Thievery would be the quickest route to get to that bitter sweet elixir his body cried for. He could never recall the name of it, of course the person he always bartered with never needed to hear a word from the young man to know what he wanted. It wasn't too long before he realized such elixir had a slight mixture of poison which left it's evidence, (blackening his tongue, darkening nails, just basically making him sick.) addicted he was far too gone to give it up... In the end he thought he could run away, maybe it just proved more fatal in doing so. Now he was in a strange city with no idea where he could get help...Well not so much in help, but more of that poison.

    Pushing himself to his feet he slowly made his way to the entrance of the alley, trying to ignore the frantic needs. Quickly he had no need to try and ignore it, his attention towards the sound of light chimes, then the figure of a women kept his gaze. It had been no difficult decision for him, he was already weakened and she looked in no condition to fight, of course she wasn't so much the target but a bundle she carefully held within her arm. Could it be something worth to barter? It looked like it could be with the way the women carried herself. He would just take the chance.

    He followed quietly behind in his own bare feet, pulling the tattered hood further over his eyes as he matched her steps, keeping a good distance back and awaiting for the best time to make his move.

    And just as he thought he could take that moment, it had been as if his heart could have just sunk, watching as the woman hurried off towards safety."No!...not just gonna give up so easily."he hissed to himself as he pushed off into a full run after the women, set on getting that item. Almost like his life depended on it, did it... Was it even worth it. No, he wasn't thinking straight anymore, he couldn't think, just act. The closer he got with an outstretched arm, he could almost already feel victory.
  5. Gwen stiffened and his body seemed suddenly too large and too tall for the measly wooden door frame. The woman that stood before him was a sad sight indeed, but he did not intend to let her in if she was as batshit crazy as she looked, covered in blood and cradling a mysterious bundle in her arms. She looked a criminal if anything, despite how lithe and unimposing she seemed to him, and he didn't for a second believe that the blood on her arms was from the scrape of glass.. He bit the inside of his cheek, beginning to reconsider his actions in calling attention to himself and his home. One couldn't be too trusting or even too helpful in these parts..or so he figured, being a man dealing in one of the more..disagreeable forms of businesses to be made these days.

    "What's that you got there?" He nodded suspiciously to the bundle.

    Before he could listen for an answer, though, another form suddenly appeared, careening wildly out of nowhere. 'Damn alley rats are everywhere!' his mind howled irritably. Without thinking, the large man stepped forward, sweeping the strange woman to the side with one arm out of the way of the crazed man (he could now see that this one was indeed a man and, indeed, very crazy at first glance..) He raised another burly arm in front of his chest and, standing between the surprise assailant and the woman, grounded himself - fully intending to knock the young man completely off his rocker should he not have the common sense to turn and flee the other way.

    Gwen spat and glared and with an angry below erupting from way deep down in his chest yelled, "STOP!"
  6. Conflict was everywhere, even in the peaceful hillside towns with barely any people. To stop conflicts was the personal goal of the man walking down the quite streets of this town. Luke was told that this area was the shadier part of town and most likely where he could find conflicts to stop. He thought to himself, #I have to actually feel the energy in this town. Not many people seem to actually publicly show their aggression. That or nothing is actually going on, I guess it is very early....#

    Sensing energy was one of many abilities he had that had to do with living or "supernatural" beings. He could absorb another's energy and/or give energy, even at a distance. However, it drained him considerably to give and to take also drained him more than what he took. To counteract the inability to effectively fight with this, he carried various weapons from throwing knives to battle axes. He could use his fifteen weapons effectively but carrying so many weapons slowed him down. (My avatar is what he looks like. So you kind of see why he'd be slowed down.)

    Luke opened himself to the energy of the town and felt everything from the fleas to all the "supernatural" beings. He focused this sense to feel malice or any negative energy arising. There wasn't much, until he felt one person's negative intent and someone responding with protective energy. In the same area, he felt someone who was feeling very weak and not putting out too much energy. #Is that who this person is protecting? And is the attacker from earlier? Oh it doesn't matter, I just need to get there now!# He took off as fast as he could in their direction, weapons clanging together as he ran. At his speed though, the conflict would probably be over before he got there.

    #Maybe I should just drain the attacker's would put us both out, but at least they couldn't hurt I need to be there to make sure nothing goes wrong, what if the weakened person isn't actually weak. Ugh just stop, worrying about it isn't going to do any good. Focus on getting there.# It was a good thing he didn't think out loud or people would think he was crazy. He tried to speed up, but his weapons just clanged even more and made it harder to run. If it wasn't for the versatility of the weapons, to deal with almost any situation, he would have gotten rid of them a long time ago.
  7. How had he not seen the man standing at the door. Before he could stop in step, it had already been too late, and hell running into the man like that was like running full force into a stone wall...Not that the frail form of the young man had ever done such silly thing.

    The force knocked him stumbling back and off his feet, coughing as he crawled backwards only to get entangled in his tattered cloak trying to get to his feet.

    It took him a moment before he torn free from the mess of fabric and was now standing, sloutching slightly forward baring fists as if ready to attack. Then again that was what he appeared, what he was really trying to do was grasp his surroundings and stop the spinning. Hands quickly covered his ears protecting against the erruption of sound against sensitive ears before cowering back on shaky legs.

    What was he doing? He forgot what he was doing. He hesitated as he dropped his hands. Gathering a short moment of sanity, confused yet looked onto the man. If this were a fight, how did it start? Oh he could feel the spinning again, the sharp pain against his temples. He try keep his eyes focused glancing back and forth from the two. The females appearance made him wonder if he had done that to her... And the appearance of the man, they probably could have been around the same age, but there was no way he could win a fight against this man.

    "uh.." sweat beaded across his forehead. "Oh no!" he couldn't help but lurch forward, heaving chunks of black tar. Sick again. Who were they..had he gone door to door begging again why he was standing here right now? No, it didn't explain the protective means this man had before him for the female standing along there. His right hand clutched into a tighter fist, no other intention but trying to get past a weakness his body was briefly suddently feeling.
    #7 Sweet-Insanity, Jan 10, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2014
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