Gears of Gandara

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  1. --> OOC <---

    "Are you really sure you wanna go through with this?" The clinking sound of a glass being brought down a little too hard on a wooden table was lost in the buzzing noise of countless conversations in the crowded tavern room. The air was filled with the taste of metal and damp sweat and the clanging of heavy hammers and the crunching of enormous gears turning could be heard from the outside. Orders were shouted and the bar-maidens busying about was a sight for sore eyes. As Bron took another deep gulp from the rust colored cup and enjoyed the heavy taste sinking down his throat, he sighed content and completely ignored the mixture of worry and annoyance in Shim's eyes. "You know, you really should think these things through". The concerned tone in Shim's words wasn't lost on Bron, but as always he chose to ignore it as he leaned back on his chair. The tavern doors opened again and a group of workers entered, their coarse laughing and shouting adding to the already rough atmosphere in the room. Their bare chests were sweaty from a hard day and the scars zigzagging all over their flesh spoke of the nature of their work. The Gear District was a dangerous part of town and the people here were a hardy bunch. Which was exactly why Bron chose this bar. "And did you have to make us meet up... here?" Shim's face twisted with disgust as one of the workers at a large table across barfed and toppled over, accompanied by the loud hooting and cheering of his mates as they raised their mugs yet again. "Couldn't there have been a more suitable place? I mean come on". The worker who had collapsed in his own filth was simply lfet there by his peers. This didn't seem to be an usual occurrence as one of the bar-maidens swiftly cleaned up after him. Bron's eyes glittered and his dark goatee wandered upwards as his large mouth broke into a big grin.

    “This, my friend”

    Bron began, his bass voice reverberating through the air as he gloriously waved his cup in the air to encompass the whole room

    “is where we will begin an adventure unlike any other”

    ~:: Gears of Gandara ::~

    The gleaming in his friend's eyes as Bron took another deep gulp of the honey colored substance was all to familiar to Shim. It meant trouble. "This is insane Bron, what if someone actually answers? Or even worse, shows up?" It wasn't just his best friend's whacky idea that worried the little man, it was the fear that there were probably people out there just as whacky. Especially if you put up hundreds of posters all over the city promising, what? A crazy trip into the outer systems? In a broken heap of chunk that against all odds might even fly and make it out of the city gates? On a quest that sounded like the fabric of a madman's mind? Bron just grinned again at his friend's worries, his deep blue eyes steadily wandering over to the door between drinking his mead and looking at the blonde haired middle aged fellow in front of him. "And even if you DO get a crew together, what do you think it will accomplish?" The air seemed to freeze in that moment. Bron's hearty smiled vanished and his furry brows wandered together, his visage seeming earnest for the first time since the two partners had met up this evening. Bron's chair gave a loud creaking sound as the tall man bent over the table, put his muscular arms on the polished wood and looked deep into his friend's eyes. "50 Million Gulden, Shim." Bron's voice was dead serious. "50 Million. I'd retake the Qunar wastelands for that kind of money." "It's a MYTH!" Sharply raising his voice was not Shim's style but the scholar had to slap some sense into this guy. "What do you expect? Just because you find some ancient key that may or may not be what you claim it to be" Shim's voice derailed into annoyed preaching, like he had done this a thousand times over "Gandara has been lost for centuries. It's a myth, Bron, like it or not. A fantasy. A bedtime story for children dreaming of heroic acts and marvelous adventure". Looking at his friend, the thought crossed Shim's mind that Bron was not so far from that. A gleamy eyed kid, ready to believe in a long dead story because it fit his convenience. The fact that the man before him who weighed probably twice his own could probably snap his neck without getting up didn't lessen that impression. Shim had known Bron for too long. As Bron leaned back and crossed his huge arms in front of his chest, he must've looked like a very dangerous man about to blow to everyone else. All Shim saw was a pouting child. "Gandara is real." Bron's voice was stout and steadfast. "And I will find it t. I have the key, I have the map. All I need is a crew" As he said that, his face cracked into another smile. "And right now, three hundred posters all over the city are taking care of that for me." With a swift motion, Bron unlatched the first button on his leather mantle and pulled out a crackling piece of paper. Sweepingly spreading the map on the table between the two friends, a dagger appeared in his hand from god knows where and was nailed almost up to the haft into the hard wood, marking a location on the map and fixing it to the surface at the same time. "This is where we'll start. The Longshot is ready to set sail and fly us out of here by tomorrow. If we have gathered a feisty crew by then." Contemplating for a moment, Bron fell silent, only to speak up again after a heartbeat. "Five should be enough" "Come on Bron" Shim's voice was mirroring the disbelief his face displayed. "You want to find the lost city of Gandara with five people? No wait, let me phrase that another way:"

    "Do you really think there are five people in this city crazy enough to willingly set sail with a madman, on a journey to find a city that is nothing more than a myth, with an airship that looks like it'll fall apart at the next turn, in the hopes to recover an amulet that probably never existed to begin with? Do you really belief anyone apart from you is that insane?"
    #1 Enigma, Jan 6, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2014
  2. Merej walked trough the streets, he was fired because of sleep problems, so he went and tried to find new work. "Man, this sucks. I could be sitting next to a fireplace with my mechanical dog and my friends. Oh wait! I dont have any!" He let that sound sarcastic. The people were looking at him like he was a hobo. Well, he kind of WAS a hobo. Just not a homeless one. Merej walked to the closest bar, thinking that he could drink his problems away. Closing to the door however, he found a poster with information on it. "An offer? Finding Gandara?! Isnt that a fairy tale? Hahaha... These guys really want to find it?! Well, its better than nothing. I guess some money would be nice. If they would even GIVE me money in the first place. I guess i'll go directly" Merej stepped on his mech cruiser and drove to the spoken location. As he arrived he investigated the place. "Well this sure stinks. I hope these arent those cheap robbers they were talking about." Merej opened the door and looked inside as he saw two figures argueing with eachother. "H..Hello? I heared there was a job here."
  3. This morning when Maxine Ayre awoke and went out had started off normally enough. In this city a woman of her ilk was generally considered an outcast. No, it wasn't because she was poor. Quite the opposite, she was rich. Richer than most. When her uncle died he had left all his money to her, not to her male relatives. It had been quite the scandal. Women usually were no more than property. It wasn't because Alexis was disfigured either. She was a dashing woman, if the term could be applied to a woman. She had long dark hair, worn up of course. Before her timely inheritance from her sympathetic uncle, she had been a proper woman. Confined to the rules. Yes, after the money she became socially unacceptable. She dressed in trousers. Used weapons, mainly a small clock powered pistol and a shotgun. Worked with machines. Worst of all associated with the 'common' folk and she enjoyed it. Luckily, after a few years the scandals around her name had died down and people were used to knowing Maxine was a little crazy and improper.

    In fact, after the scandals died down, people started coming to her after hearing rumors of her ability to find and retrieve items. Mostly items of a delicate nature, items that would cause problems if they ever came to light. She charged an exorbitant amount of money for her fees. But in reality she did it for the rush. Maxine was a complete and total adrenaline junkie. Much like the poor on opium or Laudanum. So when she walked out her door and into the ruckus of the street, sidestepping filth on the road and horses and coal powered carriages, she spotted an ad she just couldn't ignore.


    Maxine let out a loud whoop, surprising people and animals around her. She whipped right back around and inside her house. There she remained for the rest of the day until the light started failing. When she next emerged there were few people around. She had a bag slung over one shoulder, her pistol attached to his hip and her shotgun attached to the bag. She nestled her goggles down over her eyes and pulled down the brim of her bowler hat before slinking off into the darkness with a wide ridiculous grin on her face.

    Maxine had a little bit of a hard time finding the tavern referenced on the flier, but she did discover it. It wasn't in the best part of the city. In fact, it was an area even she wouldn't want to walk into unarmed due to the nature of the clientele and the fact she was a woman. But she was armed, and everyone was generally deterred by her pistol. Gaining access to the tavern unmolested was a win in Maxine's book. She pushed the goggles down onto her neck and shifted her bowler hat so she could see.

    Do you really believe anyone apart from you is that insane?

    Maxine's smile rekindled for the first time since stepping into the district. Insane? It was quite possible she was, after all she never liked dresses, needle-point fawning over men for social improvement, gossip, and other necessities for a woman of breeding. Maxine readjusted her bag and gave it a quick check to make sure no one was trying to steal from her. Her blue eyes scanned the men in this pit of filth for someone who looked like they were the ones who put up the fliers. She marked the two smartly dressed men as the most likely candidates. Plus there was another guy talking to him. Said third man wasn't dressed as well and his posture screamed insecurity. Before she tried her luck, perhaps she'd wait and see what would happen.

    She moved just a couple of feet over to the bar, took up a stool after shoving a drunkard off of it and ordering herself a drink. She wasn't going to drink it, because it would probably taste like watered down piss, but if she wanted to stay, she needed to pay. She tilted her head slightly to listen to the three men.

    [[So I write a lot. >> I get less garrulous when I'm interacting with others.]]
  4. [Glad to see this gather some interest after all!]

    Shim's eyebrow wandered upwards as he was disapprovingly looking up and down the worn out shaggy clothes and the insecure stance of the man that had spoken up to them. So this was the kind of people Bron's pamphlets would attract. He looked like a homeless. Shooting a glance across the table, the scholar's eyes seemed to indicate to his friend "I told you so". But Bron didn't seem to mind. In fact, the large grin that once again spread across the tall man's face as he pulled a chair over with his paw like hand seemed as friendly as could be. "Welcome on board, my friend! Sit down and join us for a drink. My name is Bron, and this is Shim" The man's charismatic voice reverberated through the air as white teeth flashed and revealed a single golden tooth on the side. Grinning, and with the dangerous glittering in his eyes that had been there all evening, Bron gestured invitingly towards the chair.
  5. The lead up (open)

    Bebe rumbled with much displeasure as Ollie dropped their movement to a snails pace as they rolled down the alley, weaving in and out, avoiding the piles and piles of rubbish. The single glaring eye of Bebe shone bright as her voice echoed out against the walls of the dilapidated buildings, grumbling, always grumbling, daring anyone, daring anything to try to make her shut up. Bebe crept along, still grumbling then she creaked and squealed as soon as her riding sister found the fading single gaslamp denoting the dive bar that doubled as Ollie's freedom. Bebe growled once loudly, sending smoke upward to join the rest of the mud-coloured filth in the sky, then a second time even louder than the first sending the rats squealing and scurrying away, little voices actually sounding as if they dared to tell Bebe to shut up. As if in response, Bebe's single eye winked close and finally stopped grumbling.

    All she could do in this moment, was stare at that back door until the multilayered stains of rust, grime and human made substances upon said back door blurred in her vision. All she could feel in this moment was the slow rhythmic breathing of the female that clamped herself to Ollie from behind. Rise and fall, rise and fall, she could feel the girl's chest move against her armoured back. Even though the great gears continued to grind out all other sounds, Ollie could still hear her breathing, oh that calming sound of her sleeping girl. Something about how she could sleep even though Bebe had been roaring and rumbling for nearly an hour straight and yet still sleep against the back drop of the worst machine music ever pulled one corner of Ollie's mouth up in a bemused smirk.

    Same ol' Del.

    She would love her little sister no matter what happened when Ollie entered the dive bar and closed that door upon her sister for the final time.

    "Tiens, cherie. Del, c'est le temps pour traivaille.... Del! Wake up...!" a rough shrug of the shoulders startled her sister awake. "Time for me to go to work, ma petite soeur..."

    Hazel eyes darkened as they were unleashed from behind the dirty windows of her goggles. This was the sister Del hated. The one that went to work in one piece and, time and again, came back more broken then the last time. Shiny blue eyes lost their lustre as eyes met. Marti was now Ollie. Marti was sweet and funny. Ollie hurt people. Badly. Ollie killed people. Lots of them. Fuck you, Ollie... Del lowered her lids and broke eye contact with the monster. A quick lick of her lips, a rough swallow to wet her dry throat, a sigh filled with more than disdain. Fuck you and a half... But in her heart, Del knew that this is what her big sister was made for; it was how they were able to afford life in this shit hole town. And pay to keep their secret all safe and tucked away.

    But this time something was different. Del could feel some kind of--

    A gloved hand reached out and firmly yet tenderly grasped the girl's chin and brought her visage back to meet Ollie's nasty face. Shiny blue eyes popped open wider than her gaping mouth.

    "Ecoutes moi, cherie..." Ollie said in a low voice as she took off her leather riding helm and plopped it on the girl's head, "listen well, Delaney..."

    Those hazel eyes were still darkened and still Ollie's but... tears sprouted and fell from Del's eyes for no reason other than--

    "You're crying, Ollie..! What's wrong...? What is wrong, I say! What is going on--"

    Ollie shut the teenager's frantically moving mouth with a kiss.

    A final kiss goodbye.

    In the bar (open)

    "Ummm... you okay, Kitten?" said the bulbous wart of a man as he paused mid-greedy gobble of another chicken leg. It disgusted Ollie how he could shove the whole thing into his fur-lipped mouth and pull it out clean of meat. Fuckin' pig. But the lack of sneers and not-so-subtle insults about DeSandros' eating habits had put the bulbous wart of a man at ill ease.

    He put the leg down and with his other pudgy hand he snapped his fingers. "Oi, Kitten! Over here you blank bitc--"

    Ollie's hand was at his face instantly. Weapons of his 'lads' were a heartbeat late, but still drawn and pointed at her head; just an itchy trigger finger away from turning her skull into squishy wet cheese. They knew what lay hidden in that Kitten's paw. Ollie just kept her darkened gaze locked with the wide yellowed eyes of the dirty neighbourhood master. A bead of sweat dribbled down his forehead from underneath his hat as Ollie continued to wipe the corners of his greasy mouth.

    "There. Ca va. Dirty, dirty mouth is now clean..."

    A nervous titter from the shaken gelatinous man. A quick wave of his hand and the weapons of his lads disappeared. Big fuckin' mistake.

    "Hah! You had me going for a loop there, girlie! Hah!" crusty flakes of bread from yesterday or the day before shook free from his moustache as he belched out laughter, "Oh dear... very well then... you have your mark. Payment upon completion as always, Kitten. Take the Wayward Maiden. Least conspicuous, dearie--"

    He was going to pull the table cloth that was tucked into his collar out and his men would watch with a sideways glance. They always did. And that was the last thing they would see. Ollie was quicker than them and she would gut them before they knew what happened. Then she would kill every single fuckin' one of DeSandro's lackeys and flunkies in this place until she was killed or until she killed them all. In blood red rage or with her own blood, she would end this. No more being his little 'Kitten.' No more living under his thumb. No more touching Delaney. No more dangling carrots nor strong-armed threats. No fuckin' more. Ollie was done. And so were all these scumbags.

    The bloodbath would start with DeSandro and all those folds neath that lost chin of his.

    "Eh Monsieur DeSandro--" the next set of words was her calling card that someone was about to die. But those words caught in her throat when her keen ears heard someone shout out a word. This was the word that saved her life. And Delaney's.


    Visions of the next course of action exploded in everywhich direction and flooded her mind. Gears worked away, steam practically bursting her head open as she stared over her 'employer's' shoulder at that shitty half-assed poster dripping with desperation.

    Gandara. Parfait. Baise moi... It was perfect.

    "--change of plans. I will take another ship. Even more secret. No one would suspect this Dollie coming from aboard that junk ship. She heads in the right direction, her. No?"

    Oblivious to the fact that his head should have been about ten metres from his body a heartbeat ago, DeSandro grunted as he turned around and squinted at the poster. When he turned around, she strained with every ounce of her will to not shudder as grinned at her with those bumble bee coloured teeth. Imagine the smell... "Oh Kitten...! Ho-ho-ho...! I likes the way you think, dearie! I say... she is a bright one. Brilliant. Make it so. Bloody hell, make it so..."

    A chubby hand flicked away, signalling she was dismissed. Ollie would stand and pass him by. As always he would slap her ass.

    Not this time.

    "Touch me and I kill one of your boys," she said casually as she stood and passed him by dark willful intent dripping from around her.

    "Ho-ho-ho! A spirited one, this Kitten," he kept his hands to himself this time, "there are others I can touch, you know... and trust me, girlie. I will touch her loverly parts with any body part of mine I choose..."

    Of course she would spin around and cause a scene, threatening his life and screeching curses that would make a devil blush.

    Not this time.

    Ollie paused. A quick glance over the shoulder. A deadly hazel eyed wink.

    A killer smirk.

    Ollie moved on to where she heard the man exclaim about 'Adventure unlike any other' and slapped her own ass a single time in clear view for them just before she left DeSandro's private room.

    A sharp slurping sound broke the stunned silence amongst DeSandro's gathered small army.

    "What the fuck is that bitch up to...?" said the bulbous wart of a man as he waved around his meatless chicken bone.

    "Bonjour... you may call me: Ollie." said Weapon 13-Song as she took off her leather overcoat and tossed it onto the hook of the coat rack. Six foot three inches of all muscly goodness of a woman folded her arms as hazel eyes scanned the faces of the men without moving her head.

    "You need someone to handle heavy weapons, heavy lifting or heavy ass-kickng...? You need someone to toss dead weight from your boat, toss dead bodies from your boat, or just be drop dead gorgeous as she kicks ass...? You just point and Ollie will shoot.

    I just ask for my cut. And I will not put up with... how do you say... ah oui... I do not put up with dicks. Ollie does not do dicks--" a sly knowing hazel-eyed wink then she continued with a slight pout of her lips "--you need a woman's touch on your boat... and so does Ollie..."

    Two strides brought her to the least looking rickety chair. Dusty, dark boots that were buckled nearly up to her knees kicked it from under the table and she sat her ass down. She smoothed out her dark jumpsuit trousers then crossed her legs nonchalantly, and ladylike for once. Another pout then she leaned back into the chair and folded large, scarred arms across her skimpy top again. A lone chestnut eyebrow raised and she flicked loose strands traipsing across her forehead with a quick jerk of her head.

    "Eh bien. So who is going to buy a lady a drink... and who is going to let this bitch know what is the plans on this... this 'Adventure unlike any other...?'"

    That killer smirk dangled from her lips and she playfully winked at the males in front of her. A brainy-looking fellow. A monster with jet black hair. A meek looking tramp.

    Gandara. Parfait. Baise moi.

    It was perfect.
    #5 inDefiance, Jan 8, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 10, 2014
  6. [3 on board, 2 two go. Come on folk, I'd love to see this take off^_^]
    [Bron has black hair. There might've been a misunderstanding when I read that last post]

    "Martha! Bring a drink for our lady here. And make sure the glass is clean" Bron waved in the general direction of one of the bar maidens without breaking eye contact with the newcomer. Blue eyes steadily held the gaze of hazel colored ones. And while his smile had been friendly before, the corners of Bron's mouth now wandered upwards in a dangerous grin. His eyes glimmered a tick more attentively and Shim recognized the familiar, faint sense of watchfulness in his friend. This woman knew how to kill as much as she knew how to lift. This could be troublesome. While the two of them were assessing each other, Shim's eyes were darting back and forth between the tall, muscular man and the woman that could almost measure up to him, if not in height, so at least in attitude. And her muscly arms were definitely bigger than Shim's, that much he could tell at first glance. If it had been two males, Shim would've said he could smell the testosterone when the two mountains were holding each others gazes.

    A sigh escaped the scholars lips. This could become even more troublesome than he had feared. If more people started showing up, there would be no stopping that fool. Whilst the thin man was contemplating, Martha returned carrying a bottle of mead that was obviously of a lot higher quality than what the two friends had been drinking before. It was likely even the best they had in stock. The bar maiden knew Bron could buy the tavern if he felt like it.

    "Madame. An honor to have you aboard." Bron inclined his head ever so slightly as he poured her a glass of mead to the brim. Shim knew his friend had already taken a liking to this... lady.

    [I "ignore" her demands to explain the nature of the adventure since I'll wait for everyone to come together]
  7. On a street in the Gear District there was a bench where a man at the end of his rope was contemplating his life. His birth name was Zachary S. Winslow but he hadn't used it in nearly a decade, finding the shorter Zach Winn was far more acceptable in the circles he now moved in. Once he had been the son of a member of the local gentry, but events and circumstances he kept to himself as a jealously as a precious jewel had changed all that. He was now a thief and a swindler and while he ultimately did not regret the decisions that had led to that career he was now facing one of the major drawbacks to his occupation: dry spells. There had no festivals, no parties, no galas, nor any gathering that brought the wealthy and vulnerable out in the open for the last month and thanks to some very bad decisions made under the influence of bottles of Rosby 1853, the proceeds from his last heist had finally run out. Zach was now facing the prospect of leaving his comfort zone of conning the rich for much riskier and less rewarding work when his wandering eye feel on a poster. As he read it Zach quickly understood that it was an ad for yet another treasure hunt, the errand of the rich or the desperate who sought to pry glory and riches from the fractals of the abyss. Ordinarily Zach wouldn't have given such a venture a second thought but the emptiness of his pockets forced him to consider the idea. As he turned the idea over in his head he found the idea more and more appealing. True, it was a boondoggle but it was a boondoggle that would pay him and provide him with three squares a day. Plus when the hunt returned home empty-handed (as they all did in his experience) the distraught owners would never notice a few missing items from the airship, the proceeds of which could carry him until a mansion opened its doors again.

    Making his decision Zach noted the address where all interested parties were supposed to go, made his way to his cache where he grabbed a couple loaded pistols to stuff inside his coat pockets and made his way the place where the expedition was meeting. Scoping out the joint he noted it was a working-class bar, adjusted his appearance accordingly and went inside. Zach scanned the room for unusual individuals and he soon saw a thin scholarly figure arguing with a musclebound chap while a nervous beggar, a lady wearing rough clothes, and someone who could be charitably described as a woman looked on. That was it. He approached the table at a leisurely gait, gave a warm smile and said, "Excuse me, but is this the table for the expedition?"
  8. "Excuse me, but is this the table for the expedition?" And yet another shady charater had appeared. Shim rubbed his forehead with the palm of his hand while that fool he had for a friend gleamed at the newcomer. The man looked like he'd steal the chairs from under them. This made, what, three already? A sigh escaped the scholar's lips. Why did he always just go along with Bron's madness. "It is indeed, my good fellow! Why don't you have a glass of mead and join us." It seemed like the man couldn't care less about the shabby appearance two thirds of his so called crew presented itself with. And the last third.. calling her a woman was a strech. Moving uneasily in his seat, Shim tried to distract himself from the unpleasent crowd that had started to gather around his insane friend by breathing consciously and counting the bolts in the ceiling above them. But as always, his friend made sure to make him feel as uncomfortable as possible.
    "Why don't you take care of our new friends here for a moment, Shim" Stunned, Shim's head jerked down from the vagely confortable position, only to see his friend looking at him with eyes that glittered of amusement. He wasn't just going to... was he? Like mountain that suddenly decided it wanted to raise itself and walk, the tall man hauled himself from his seat. The table creaked as a pair a large hands were used to help lift the considerable mass that was Bron. Standing at his true height it became apparant once again how huge he really was. Seeing a tall man sit was one thing; really seeing him stand right in front of you was a whole other story. "I have something small to take care off". Leaving Shim with the shady bunch, Bron waltzed away. The scholar sighed angrily as three pair of eyes came resting on him. That man really was unbelievable.

    The bartender was a rough fellow. The large scar across his left eye and the fuzzy eyebrows that were furrowed at all times spoke of a life of hardship. He was just scrubbing the counter, as Bron slid himself on an empty barstool between an elderly sir to the left and an attractive young lady to the right. It seemed that every piece of wood Bron got close to would creak threateningly, as if to remind everyone involved what a man this size could do to you. A quick gesture of his hand and a glass of mead landed in front of him. Taking a sip, a content nod of agreement in diretion of the bartender, Bron just sat there and quietly drank. There was silence for a while as the tall man peacefully enjoyed his drink.

    "So. Is there any particular reason you are eavesdropping on us?"

    He didn't turn his face. Just sipped on his mead and smiled at the cute bar maiden cleaning glasses. As he raised his glass for a refill, his mantle fell open a little more, and the dagger the size of a grown man's forearm was flashed for a moment. Coincidentally, a paw like hand rested on the tall man's knee.
    #8 Enigma, Jan 11, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 11, 2014
  9. Maxine was quite glad that she had chosen to sit at the bar. For shortly after she had sat down, and taken a regretful sip of the mead, more people had shown up. First was the larger woman. If such a person could be called a woman. Hell, her bicep was as big as Maxine's neck. Intimidating? Yes. Next was a man who was obvious a thief. Being of a similar occupation, she could spot them on sight. The way they walked, the attitude they exuded. Though Maxine would hazard he wasn't a good thief. Despite the phrase: The only good thief is a free one. Being a noble she could spot wealth and a lack thereof. He had had money, then either spent it or lost it. Since he was male, Maxine decided that he gambled it away. The past time of drunkards and noble men. Something even her Uncle fell victim to. Though he was always able to win his money back. Or was it taking it back?

    Maxine tilted her head a bit more and stared at the table. At first she had sat here at the bar waiting to see if she was at the right spot. Which she now knew for certain. But the only person she found herself liking was Bron. A loud boisterous fellow. When the man in question said he had something to take care of, Maxine didn't automatically think it was her that needed taking care of. In fact, it wasn't until he sat next to her in a protest of overused wood that she figured it out.

    "So. Is there any particular reason you are eavesdropping on us?"

    Maxine's hand went for her pistol as she tensed. Perhaps there was a little but of revision to go upon. Up close he was huge. Maxine swallowed before she spoke. A giant bear of a man. With the large woman, Ollie attached also, Maxine was beginning to feel a little outclassed.

    "Wanted to make sure this was the right place. And," She paused then shrugged. "I wanted to make sure I wasn't going to get washed for my troubles." True enough. Might have been some scam to attract those people no one would miss. Or worse, press-gang them into service. "You planning something Sir?" Maxine turned her body on the stool to make sure that he could see, if he so desired, her pistol. "I don't take kindly to threats."
    #9 WesteriaVale, Jan 11, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2014
  10. A grin was slowly spreading on the man's face as he began to relax. She was here for the expedition. His worries had been unfounded. Raising his hand from the threatening closeness to the dagger at his side, the man turned his head and faced the lady next to him for the first time. She was a beauty. Not in the rough, hard boiled sense of Ollie, but in a dashing, feminine way. Bron had to blink a few times to make sure he kept his footing. It worked. While her beauty was breathtaking, Bron didn't fail to notice the pistol that had been there all along. Feisty woman. Giving a small laugh that vibrated through the air between them, the tension that had built up was slightly eased over. "If you're not my enemy, I'm not your enemy". Without breaking eye contact, his left hand that was still hold his drink let go was waved through the air again. How many times did that make this evening? "I did not mean to threaten you. I too, had to make sure I wasn't going to... get washed." He wasn't lying. And while his face was as hard to read as ever, the tall man now made no attempt to seem threatening anymore which worked wonders. A golden tooth flashed as the man's bear grin appeared again. He lifted his glass towards the lady who now had another drink standing in front of her. Top notch quality this time.

    That guy had really just left him with these people. Unbelievable. Shim gave another annoyed sigh. Whatever he had to take care of, it better be important. Shim looked past his glass. All of them were sitting quietly, no one was talking and the tension in the air was almost like a solid mass. He should probably try to build something like a mood. Surrounded by people he'd rather not see crossing the threshold of his mansion, the scholar gave something vaguely resembling a smile in a hesitant attempt to establish a friendly atmosphere.

    Meanwhile, a carriage came to a halt just outside the tavern. Workers were either suspiciously ogling the fizzling vehicle or just ignoring it outright. It did not belong here. As the heavy gears powering the horseless cart started grinding to a halt and hot steam escaped the cowling, the wine colored door was pushed open. The dim lights in the streets flashed on a globe shaped ruby at the top of an obsidian walking stick. Coming down heavily on the ground and supporting the weight of the figure emerging from the carriage, a heavy coat matching the color of the stick flapped in the hot air. Approaching the tavern, heavy asthmatic breathing could be heard. So this was where that cowardly bear was hiding.
    #10 Enigma, Jan 13, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 13, 2014
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  11. Maxine, for all of her bravado and tension, was taken by surprise as Bron began to grin. It was appealing on the bigger man. In fact it was many, many times better than his former scowl. And the nice feeling it garnered increased as he released the dagger. When he looked down at her pistol and laughed, she could help but bristle. After spending so many years around people who looked down upon her ability because she was a woman, she assumed that Bron was laughing at her because of the very same. Women cannot use weapons, let alone use them well. She opened her mouth to correct him, only to have him run over her words with his own.

    Slightly mollified Maxine dropped her own hand from her pistol. "I, well, yes. Good." She settled, not really quite sure what to say. Another reason why she failed at being a woman of breeding. Inarticulate in the best of times. But in the worst of times she could always get in a retort. When the second glass appeared Maxine happily took it. The look on Bron's face let her in the secret that this was way better than her own. Indeed it was better, but not a fine as her own stock she had inherited from her Uncle. But few places could boast such a stock. She placed the drink back down at the counter.

    "How many people are you going to let on this expedition of yours Bron? May I call you that?" Maxine smiled at him. "I'm Max." No way in Imobius was she going to let this group of people call her Maxine. It was too delicate and feminine. She'd never be respected. But Max was a good gender-less name. She held out a small hand to be shook.
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  12. "Ahoy, and what have we here...?"

    As son to an infamously-estranged nobleman, the soul of a frontiersman of engineering wafted throughout him as it did many before him. It was why, when losing an arm to a specatcular crash-and-burn incident, he opted to chop it off entirely and wire himself a new arm of steam and metal that, after a few modifications, finally was able to mirror the strength of his other arm and with even more versaility. That blood of adventure in every way a man could get it what what he held, and there was no way he would be restrained from it, willing to stow countless tools and multitools within his mechanical forearm and his steam-generator backpack. He was efficient, tall, strong, dashing, rather handsome and somewhat beyond the limits of 'sanity' and 'normality' imposed upon him.

    But who was he?

    He knew exactly who he was and what he stood for. His ever-worried wife was not so sure. But with the assurance that his very, ever-talanted prescence aboard the craft departed to journeys unknown would guarentee an ultimate success, Elina reluctantly agreed, willing to care for his infant son while he was away as he was. And he did so with a fine suit, change of clothes, freshly-cleaned arm with spare parts and tools hooked up to it and the generator hauled upon his back, and a pistol on his side about twice as large as it should've been and for all the world might as well have been an elephant gun.

    And it was that way that he entered the bar in the Gear District so gallantly and nonchalantly, a hulking figure to become the center of attention to anyone who could possibly care about such a high-end man or his purposes here. He glanced about the room with a sense of caution and care-filling, attempting to discern which table held the quarry for the bounty and adventure of a lifetime. He had not even regarded the chariot that had pulled up outside with the snobby, self-righteous sort of nobleman that he rather despised. Finally, his focus flew to a corner of the tavern in which several figures huddled around a table with a knifed map upon it, looking the most out of place in comparison to him in this place and opposition to this place and its occupants in general.


    He strode up to the corner table and the group around it with a shine of unbound confidence in his eyes, and regarded to the man about as tall and brutish as he might be, "Greetings, comrade. Unless I am mistaken, you intend to journey to the far reaches of the world in search of the unknown, yes?"

    With barely a pause and without wait for response, the adventurous noble knocked a hand upon his upright, jutting chest and introduced, "I am Viktor Halloway, and I must offer my services to accompany you in this magnificent adventure."
  13. It was getting noisy - far too noisy - even for Asha. While the tavern in the Gear District was, by no means, a place for quiet meditation, Asha found herself dropping in
    just to empty her thoughts. It was easy enough to drown in the lull of chattering boasts and bluffs and threats. In fact, she preferred it to the quiet that welcomed her
    whenever she returned to what she now called home: a ramshackle hut teetering on the edge of a towering pile of tarnished things and almost-broken toys.

    The provisions to survive three months or so were now securely packed in an extremely large, worn-out rucksack. Covered in grease and smelling like an undrained swamp, it sat beside Asha, perfectly still and perfectly horrible. The grease and the stink were a deterrent to would-be thieves who seemed to sprout in this city the way weeds sprouted in the ruins that dotted the Kingdom.

    However, she was here in the Gears, and here, everything was fair game.

    A little grease and stink would hardly scare the patrons who frequented this fine establishment. Still, it afforded her a wee bit of privacy; the stench wafting from the sack was enough to make even the hardiest of men spill out the contents of their dinner.

    She was – quite fortunately – immune to it.

    Pulling down the hood of her dirt-stained cloak low enough to cover almost half her face, Asha tried to ignore the ruckus around her. The place was more boisterous than usual, owing the extra noise to the rag-tag group of misfits who huddled in the other corner of the tavern. She had had her eye on the two men - the ones called Bron and Shim - long before the first prospective crew member hesitantly inquired about a job. As the crew grew in number, so did Asha's curiosity. Were they truly serious?

    The posters had become the talk of the city, though most city-folk have learned to dismiss such obvious theatrics. An adventure of a lifetime! – might work if the destination wasn’t one as preposterous as Gandara.

    And yet.

    Blast it all. She should have been on her way home if not for those bloody posters.

    She tightened the scarf around her neck and pulled it up over her nose. Stray tendrils of bright white hair escaped the hooded confines of her cloak as Asha leaned forward to pick up her rucksack. Swinging it over her shoulder with nary a pause, she took a shambling step towards the tavern door, a week's worth of work now hanging on her back like a turtle's shell, making her look for all the world like a decrepit old woman who can barely manage to walk.

    She glanced once more at the group, noticed yet another of the hopeful - a man who looked just as odd as the rest - with his gold tuxedo and transforming jetpack. On the outside, they all appeared to have nothing in common, other than the willingness to gamble a large portion of their sanity in chase of what everyone thought was a myth. The one called Shim might be an exception, but other than voicing his protests, he did nothing to stop the bigger man. She wondered if they would even last a week, let alone the entire journey.

    Pushing the door open, she made her way outside, her thoughts now filled with half-forgotten memories and lullabies. Narrowly avoiding a collision with someone who was obviously in the wrong side of town - if the ostentatious walking stick was any indication - she mumbled a hasty apology before turning around and picking up her pace. She was headed towards the scene of her last trade because she knew the Longshot was there.

    And that was where she needed to be.
    #13 Xan, Jan 22, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2014
  14. She'd met a lot of interesting and unsavory in her days. And at 25, the list kept growing ever longer. Brown eyes struggled not to close in disgust at the rancid liquid passing as rum slipped down her throat.

    "Bartender," she called over. "A word, sweetie..."

    She was sitting at the bar long enough, making idle chat with the rather boisterous bar tender, listening with half an ear to the gathering group. She swung her legs in the direction of the crew and crossed them at the knees, mindful of the pistols settled at the ready on each hip. A black gloved hand casually took on the weight of a petite head and she looked at them curiously, the elevated foot tilting this way and that, much like the tail of a curious feline.

    The bartender set another glass of something that looked a tad different from the usual being served everyone else. The brown skinned woman took it up and tasted it. With a pleased grin she turned to the bar tender. "You've done well."

    Satisfied with the change she'd recommended, she returned her attention to the group.

    "All this talk about going on an adventure," she chimed in with a raised brow. "And neither of you care for your own stomachs? What's a crew without a decent cook to fill those endless barrels you all call stomachs? And men need to eat. And of course this lady here," she nodded at the largest woman, "is still a growing lass."

    The dark skinned woman reached into her shirt and pulled out a rolled up paper, unraveling it to reveal the ad that was posted almost everywhere in the slums. She smiled winningly. "Qimbra at your services."
  15. It was Alex's 13th birthday. Not that birthdays even mattered in the gear district. She had been by herself on the street for 5 years now, and had been coming to the tavern a lot over the past year. It was the perfect place to swipe a few dollars from a drunkards bag. This particular night, two men in clean suits were sat in the corner of the room. Over the course of the night, she had watched 5 different people go up to the table, all of them in a different disposition. She concluded that these were the people going to look for Gandara.
    I'll follow them, she thought, see where this leads.
  16. Alex watched the table for a while, and after much thought, decided to join in. She strode up to the table. "I would like to go with you to find Gandara" she informed them, her voice slightly wavering.
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