Iwaku: Banishment

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    Captain Melody S. Regalia stood anxiously at the bow of the sky whale Muse, blanket wrapped tightly around her frame, and a hand clamped upon a railing. The condensation from the clouds chilled her to the bone and tears ran like rivers down her cheeks - flying without goggles was an unpleasant experience. Queen Diana insisted that they travel through the skies since it was faster than traveling by water, but the Captain wished that her Majesty had at least built a building or two on the animal. It was frightening to know that a slip of the hand could tip a body to fall to the land below. Luckily no such thing had happened yet.

    The creature crested over a hill with a mighty slap of its tail, causing the captain's adrenaline levels to spike. Her breath hitched in her throat, caught there by the sight of Guy'ah's capital city, Avi. The sprawling streets, the elegant architecture, and the crowds of people - it was breath taking. But the sight was soon lost on her; the sky whale moved several miles, into the poor district of Avi, where there were small fires set on the streets and beggars pestering the rich for food and Reputation. The plumes of smoke gathered in the sky to mix with the clouds. The woman looked upon the spectacle with stoic eyes.

    In the distance, Melody saw the light house of Nerf Harbor, flickering like a candle in the dark. The sky whale would make its descent shortly, where her party would get their bearings and search for the weapon. It was highly unlikely that the King and Queen of Guy'ah would know of Iwaku's predicament, but in case they did, Melody brought gifts for the royalty.

    "How are you all doing back there?" She yelled to the others over the rush of the wind.
  2. Damian was exploring the top of the sky whale, not that there was much to see. He was more looking for a spot that he felt particularly safe standing as they flew over the vast expanse of the land. He didn't much favor the edge. Railing was available for stability, but in the air it was cold and wet, or frozen. Not as safe at is sounds. At the same time he felt comfort in that he would be safe should he fall. He could take the hybrid form of the butterfly, the only form that gave him wings and made his body light enough to fly, but then he would miss out on this opportunity for reputation and of course the payment. As he wandered towards the head of he group the sky whale slapped its tale and he lost is balance for a moment. "Close call," he muttered to himself.

    The Captain's call came with the wind as it streamed past his face drawing tears from his eyes. Barely audible but he understood it. He didn't think that she could hear him if he hollered back to her though so he carefully made his way to her. Before he spoke he looked past the Captain to the oh so beautiful sight of the harbor. Relieved he turned to her, "Much better now," he said nodding his head towards his sky travel salvation. "Was it necessary to fly with no lodging? I mean, don't get me wrong my first sky whale trip and I'm just as excited as the next guy but seems like such a high risk." He adjusted the collar of his coat and put his hands to his mouth to blow warm air into them. And took note of the blanket the Captain was using. Smart idea, he should have pulled his out at the beginning. He made a mental note and crossed his arms in a weak attempt to bring feeling back to his fingers.
  3. Devlin could see everything. He's never been on a sky whale before, but enjoyed being up on one. For one, he could see everything high and low. Nothing could escape his sight. He's never been afraid of heights and in fact, loved them. He managed to keep his balance on the moving sky whale even though he was sitting dangerously close to the edge. He took in a deep breath, feeling the cold air. It was exhilarating. As the wind blew against him, he backed away from the edge.

    The captain called back to them asking how they were doing. He noticed that the others weren't as enthusiastic about the flight as he was. He coughed, as he seemed out of place. He wrapped his cloak around him to warm himself up. He sat down cross legged as the sky whale made it's descent. It was useless to deny his excitement, but he just said nothing trying to cover up.
  4. When they told her they were going to be traveling by air whale, Dahlia had looked forward to the journey. Watching the massive animals swim majestically through the air always took her breath away. They seemed so peaceful. So gentle. And the opportunity to travel upon one to a distant land in order to serve the kingdom that she cared so dearly for seemed like a fine way to start an adventure. She was, unfortunately, regretting not really thinking this through.

    The icy wind tore at her hair as she sat huddled in her warmest cloak for traveling. It was pointless to put the hood up; she had tried and grown frustrated when it just kept blowing back. Dahlia dared not stand until the great whale arrived at its destination in Nerf Harbor. The undulating motion and the force of the wind frightened her and no matter how broad the beast was or how her legs ached she wasn't moving from this spot. Falling or being sick did not appeal to her in the slightest and the cold and wet wasn't exactly inspiring her to rise above it.

    At the very least the view was breathtaking as the lighthouse rose into view and her new companions seemed nice enough. She looked forward to getting to know them better and cursed the whale again for robbing her of an opportunity to socialize. Well... not so much the whale but her fears as she rode upon it.
  5. Beraeus sat in front of the sky whale's short dorsal fin, his cloak wrapped around his body as well, the rest of his fur fluffed for warmth. He had ridden sky whales before, and his pads helped him keep his footing much more easily than his shod companions. The sound of the wind, however, was something he never enjoyed. Even with his earplugs in, he could easily hear the captain's voice, but it took the edge off the sharp wind. He simply nodded to the captain and looked around at the rest of his companions. What a crew they were.

    But it did feel good to be on the hunt for the Iwaku Royal Family again. Although it was much different than what he was used to, maybe this would be a good opportunity for him. Beraeus rubbed the back of his neck; he was still recovering from his latest hangover. His friends had decided to throw him a pre-adventure party, and he'd had to be delivered to the whale the next morning with a large flask of water. Not the best first impression, and he'd been quite embarrassed about it. He'd pretty much kept to himself for the duration of the trip, not wanting to get into a fight so early into the search.
  6. Valdus stood on the whale with a smirk. He thought it was quite funny how all the others were so clearly discontent. Though elves typically don't like the cold he had been on plenty of missions that forced him into it. Riding a sky whale was now normal for him, he road it constantly when in look for a new mission and sometimes he would be called on from a rich family and transported to them by a sky whale. He thought it was quite funny how most of these great warriors, most likely stronger than he was, were so unhappy about the trip... though his first time he was about the same...

    When the tail slapped he stood normally and looked around to see everyone's reactions. He was expecting it, after riding on them so obtain you kinda get a feel for it. He could feel the whale going for a decent, though he did not look to see the lighthouse or the ground below, he knew the journey was almost over. He could hear the captain yell back to them and he responded "Fine enough." He had to yell it as loud as he could to be heard over the wind but he didn't mind. It was all part of the game.
  7. Leaning with his back against the railing, Zaeke stood a short distance away from the others. He hadn't been paying much attention to the scenery below them since they had left from Iwaku, but now that they were entering lands unfamiliar to him he supposed it might be worthwhile to take in the sights and get familiar with the setting of the first stage of their mission. Turning around, he peered down over the rail, seeing the sprawling countryside sliding away beneath the sky whale as it flew through the clouds. It was hard to make out anything in detail from such a height, but so far from up there the country didn't look that much different from the nation they had departed from. Indeed, he wasn't even sure when they had crossed the border, but by now he assumed they were well within the boundaries of Guy'ah.

    In truth, he knew very little about the land that was there destination. Supposedly, it was a kingdom similar to Iwaku, but in many ways distinctly different from the place he had come to know as home. The rumors he had heard about the place made him suspect it was not as strong or as peaceful as the lands governed by Queen Diana, which were enjoying a blessed period of prosperity after what had seemed like an endless cycle of conflict, strife, and war. It would have been perfect had things not been thrown into chaos by the theft of the B.A.N hammer. That was the very reason they were on their way to Guy'ah now, to hopefully discover some leads as to what had happened to the hammer and eventually recover it.

    The rustic fields and hamlets below began to give way to villages with larger and more densely placed structures, signaling that they were approaching the capital city. Suddenly, the entire vessel they were on, if that is what it could be called, was heaved by a great motion from the whale's tail, nearly bucking Zaeke onto his knees. He grasped the rail for support, discovering that it was quite slippery from the moisture in the air around them, but he managed to hold firmly onto it after he applied another hand for support. He grumbled something under his breath about never getting used to riding sky whales and then righted himself, standing up and walking away from the railing, just in case there should be another upheaval.

    By now they were nearing the harbor and its famous lighthouse could be seen drawing gradually closer. Zaeke heard captain Melody ask her recently assembled crew how they were all doing. She hadn't struck him as particularly considerate during their brief introduction at Court, so he supposed just was just trying to break the tension after a long journey that had mostly been spent in silence. There were two distinct groups among the crew; that of the hired mercenaries that had been commissioned by the Royal Court and those who were Court members themselves. It would be interesting to see how the two would interact over the course of their shared mission. With any luck, things wouldn't get too heated. Zaeke wasn't sure he would be able to handle the empathic feedback from a gathering of such strong and varied personalities.

    Feeling a little discomfited after his near fall and somewhat impatient and eager to get things underway already, Zaeke's mouth pinched slightly at the corners and he furrowed his brow in frustration. "The sooner we can get this thing started and done with the better, as far as I'm concerned."
  8. "Muse is the fastest Sky Whale owned by her Majesty, and her newest purchase as well!" The Captain hollered to Damian, "She didn't have time to build lodgings. Besides, this way the creature is more streamlined."

    A loud hiss issued from the Sky Whale's blow hole. Water and hot air bathed over the crew members like a light tropical rain; the Captain wasn't too thrilled when this happened but it served as a warning to her. It meant that they were about to descend.

    Her grip tightened upon the railing as the Captain wheeled around to shout at her crew, "Hold on, we're about to land!"

    The landscape came rushing up to meet the adventurers. Buildings that once looked like small boxes suddenly grew monstrous and loomed over them. Ant like from, the people of Avi suddenly had faces, and limbs. The smell of smoke, salt water, and grime, hit the adventurers like a slap to the face; such scents avoided them when they were in the skies. Holding tightly to the railing, Melody couldn't help but let out a roar of excitement.

    The Sky Whale crashed belly first into open waters, fifty feet out from Nerf Harbor. Its large mass sprayed water everywhere, and it quickly came cascading down. If it the sun were still out, the display would have created multiple rainbows. Alas, all it ended up doing was giving everyone a cold, salty shower.


    The beast groaned from the exertion of landing, after all it did do a belly flop. Melody could feel the vibrations in her boots, causing her teeth to chatter. Another flap of its tail and the creature lunged forward into the water, keeping its head and occupants above the surface. A crowd had formed on the pier and Melody assumed that the people of Guy'ah were enthralled by the Sky Whale and came to watch. However as they moved closer and closer, Melody saw otherwise. The people of Avi were grim faced and quiet. Some pointed and commented, leaning in to whisper to one another. As the crew drifted closer, the people made the Sign Against Evil, a religious gesture native to Guy'ah meant to banish demons and catastrophes.

    The Captain swallowed hard.

    The crowd dispersed as Muse docked. The handlers for the animal jumped off and began unloading chests and crates off the creature. (Thick tarps served as protection against the moisture of the trip.) The Captain was one of the first off and began to take inventory.

    "Now make sure those boxes get sent to the King and Queen of Guy'ah immediately. We need to keep the peace between the two nations, otherwise the Queen will have my head. Lets see, there are our maps, some extra rations... Ah - Those chests are ours."

    Every single individual of her crew stowed the bulkier of their equipment in chests, labeled with their names in bold red lettering.

    "Grab your things everybody, the sooner we're ready the sooner we can..."

    Captain Melody continued to relay her orders, although her words were drowned out from the gulls in the harbor and the people. Zen did as she was bidden, grabbing her whip and backpack from the chest with her name. She grinned at Dahlia, the light of adventure flickering in her eyes.

    "Rough landing huh?"

    Swinging the backpack onto her shoulder, Zen was about to tune her ears back to Melody when a stranger caught her eye.

    It was a petite figure, standing at the dock with a hood over their head. Facial features hidden by the shadows, the figure gestured for Zen to follow. The monk spotted something upon their arm.

    It was a tattoo of the Cess Serpent.

    Zen turned on the spot and blurted out what she saw to Melody. The Captain's eyes flooded with apprehension. The woman couldn't turn down a clue, and not following it would mean that she wasn't willing to pursue any leads. What was worse, another clue was already spotted by the Captain. On a hill overlooking the docks of Nerf Harbor was a Tavern, whose sign read, "The Cbox" and underneath those words was a coiled serpent.

    "Alright we'll split the party up," the Captain said, running a hand through her dark locks. "Zen you're taking the Royal Court members with you. Dahlia, Beraeus, Karsikan, you better take care of her, you hear me? She's our only healer. Actually that's not a lot of you. JULES! AIRA! You're going with them.

    Everyone else you're coming with me to the tavern."

    Normally a healer would stay back because the life of the party depended upon her. But perhaps it was the rush of adventure and exploring a new land that caused Zen to take charge and confront the hooded figure. After all it had waited until the Captain sorted out the party.

    No confronting took place.

    Instead, the person turned on the spot and sprinted into the crowd of people.

    "Hey, wait!"

    Immediately Zen gave chase, hollering at the others to find another way to track the target.

    Captain Melody shook her head as she watched half of her crew disappear into the throng of people. She turned to the remaining half and barked out instructions.

    "Listen up. Worst thing we want happening is for all of us to barge in there and cause a scene. So we're gonna enter one or two at a time. I'll be entering last so you mercenary folk don't flake on your orders. I don't care who goes first but I'll skin you all alive if I come in hearing a fight break out. There's lots of people here so make sure you try to blend in.

    Also, one word about what why we're really here and I'll cut out yer tongue, got that?"

  9. Valdus took the landing easily. The last sky whale he was on was untrained and when landing it had thrown most of the crew over board. To him this was a excellent landing. Regardless he was never happy to get wet. He didn't put anything in the crates. Everything he had he kept on him, even some spare rations he packed before they left just for himself. He jumped off the whale before they had even stopped at the dock, a habit he acquired when escorting a princess.

    On the dock he walked slowly forward and examined the crowed with a mean look. He made sure they all could see he was armed to make people think twice before trying to start things with him. He wanted to get in, get out, get paid. Fighting was just an extra problem that he would have to deal with. He looked around as people were pointing out things, he didn't like the hooded man that was staring at them but apparently it was a 'clue' so they sent the royal out after him while the rest were stuck looking at some strange building.

    The captain gave her orders, the healer with the royal and the rest with her. He wondered why the healer was going a separate way instead of staying back and helping where needed, but he wasn't one to complain. "So what exactly are we looking for in this building? or are we just going to take up posts and let you do that talking." He said to the captain. He figured he would go in with the captain, she was the one who decided when he got paid which meant he would have to guard her with his life. Maybe even get a bonus for it...
  10. Damian was walking around the dock cursing the whale and all the royals and literally every other creature he knew in the world that told him he would love riding a sky whale. No one ever told him that it was going to just drop out of the sky and land in the ocean. Before he was given the salty shower he was going to retort to the captain that a couple of shacks couldn't possible have affected the speed of travel that much. After the landing he would have not minded a slower trip if it would have avoided the unexpected spray. At least the first bit was warm. In fact being wet on the ground was much better because he wasn't cold, but he was still irritated.

    He was almost too busy shaking out his coat to notice the split of his team as he was blindly just following someone to a building muttering his swears of discontent. He stopped when the door slammed in front of him. He looked around and realized that he was had crossed the harbor and was almost entering someones' home. He looked around and didn't see anyone he recognized. 'Well damn,' he muttered to himself. He roamed around in a circle looking at all the signs. He noticed a couple tailors and a grocer. "Didn't she say something about a tavern?" He couldn't remember, he was only half paying attention half beating the water out of his coat. He threw it back on around his shoulders and tried to retrace his steps. When he reached the whale he looked again, saw the Cbox and headed over. "Alright, no more fits, I can't afford to get lost."
  11. Delvin had jumped off the Sky Whale with ease. He was saddened to get off of it, but he needed to dry off anyway. He lingered around the dock awhile, getting his equipment and bearings. He kepts his knife with him at all times, but he could part with his crossbow for a bit. He walked over to the where they put all of his equipment and sure enough, there it was. He had to admit, it was hard to trust the people loading and unloading it, but they came through.

    Inside the chest was his favorite crossbow, he dubbed it Skye, and some his back pack containing some travelling essentials. He smiled, heaving it out of the chest. The pack was a bit on the heavy side, but he was used to carrying it, since living and travelling in the woods with your home on your back was something he was used to.

    After reequipping himself, he rejoined with his fellow comrades that he would be with for the rest of the assignment. He got there just in time for the captain to spout out some orders and tell some of the people to chase after a cloaked man. His instinct was to chase after him, but he held back, being directed to go to the tavern called the "CBOX". It was a peculiar name, but the locals could name it whatever they wanted.

    Quickly thinking up a story for himself, he let a couple people walk through the CBOX doors before letting himself in. He created his own persona that he would use if anyone asked him about himself. Besides, he had no legal records or anything to prove himself, which is a blessing and a curse. He made sure to keep it simple.

    Either way, he entered the tavern and took in the sights. Inside was a wide variety of people of different origins. He could tell just by looking at them. At the vvery least, this visit would be...interesting.
  12. Beraeus merely had his travel bag and weapons to sling onto his back from the whale. He always travelled light. He was just taking his plugs out of his ears and shaking out his cloak and fur when the call went up from Zen. He turned just in time to see the hooded figure disappear into the crowd. He couldn't help but grin. What better way to shake the cobwebs out than starting the quest with a good chase? At the Captain's order, Beraeus found the nearest brick-sided building and scrambled up the side, using his claws to aid him. Taking the roof route should be much easier than trying to fight his way through the crowd on the ground. And it was quieter. His ears needed a break. He immediately started to head in the direction he'd seen the figure go, scanning the top of the crowd for any sign of the fleeing person.
  13. This was pretty exciting, David hadn't been on a flying whale before, and these people were interesting. They were different from most normal folks, his brain started whirring when he started wondering about what they were good at. He had to remind himself not to stare as he wondered, he didn't want to appear like as a Newb to all of them.

    Instead he focused on the whale, he started wondering how long it took to train them or how they were first discovered etc. His mental wanderings were enough to numb him against the numbing cold and biting wind, until there was a spray of warmer water and a shift in the not-ground beneath his feet. They were probably descending, and he should get to a rail or something.

    He moved toward a rail and stumbled into it, leaning out against it he had the view of suddenly approaching water. Before the whale hit he pulled himself back to a safer position, then impact. It was unpleasant, his cloak got soaked pretty well which made it more of a hindrance in his attempt to stay warm but maybe he wouldn't need it. Blegh, it was uncomfortable.

    When everything had settled and crates and chests and things were being moved around and everyone started heading off the whale he pealed off his wet cloak and dumped it into his satchel, being careful to set it aside in the thing so it didn't get his other stuff wet too. He pulled another cloak from the opposite side of the satchel and threw it around his shoulders, it was lighter and even though it was warmer down here he was still chilled from the trip. Now it was time to get a move on.

    His eyes scanned around when he heard there was some sort of clue and fell on the person gesturing to one of the passengers, one of the Royal Court it looked like. He watched the person for a second, hearing that the Royal Court folks were going to be joining this stranger. Suddenly the person turned and bolted into the crowd of people. David was about to launch himself into the chase when the voice of the captain distracted him from his impulse. Apparently they were to go to a tavern... Yeah a chase was more interesting.

    David put his soggy hat into his satchel before letting it slide down from his shoulder and leaped off the whale to the ground. He started running once he hit the ground and had the hooded stranger in sight, a motion at the corner of his eye brought his attention to a leopard dude climbing up the side of the building, guess he had the rooftops covered. David ran into the crowd, following the rough path that one chick and the stranger had made, keeping eyes on them and weaving deftly around pedestrians.

  14. Well if that isn't just the icing on the cake. Dahlia grumbled to herself as they approached the dock and began to unload. She was glad to be on solid ground again though and warmth steadily began to return to her limbs despite being sopping wet. With the way the locals were looking at them, it wouldn't do for a royal official to be looking bedraggled. When the call went up to collect belongings from the trunks, she hurriedly began to switch her sodden clothes for dry- as much as was appropriate to do standing on a public dock at any rate. Dahlia has just gotten her wind-blown hair back into some semblance of order and fashion when Zen approached.

    "I'll say. The entire trip was rough but at least when you trade luxury for speed the unpleasantness doesn't last all that long." A bright smile answered Zen's grin, and though Dahlia didn't quite share her dear friend's enthusiasm for adventure she had to admit that there was a certain thrill about what they were doing. Shouldering her own bag now that her appearance was in order, Dahlia was just moving from the crates and the frenzied activity of her crewmates to gather their belongings when she heard Zen give a shout.

    The Captain was barking orders, people were running, Zen was off like a shot and the group was being split. Ordered to go with the other Royals, to keep her friend safe from harm, Dahlia was about to give chase to the mysterious hooded stranger who was their quarry when one of the mercenaries leaped from the whale above her. With a little cry of surprise Dahlia backpedaled and watched with wide eyes as the man disobeyed orders and took off into the crowd.

    Casting a glance after the mercenary and then back at the others assembling to make their way to the tavern, Dahlia grimaced apologetically to the captain. "It seems as if my place was taken. For the sake of numbers I'll come with your group going to the CBOX. You never know, I might be of use." She tried to suggest cheerfully, despite her embarrassment at being overtaken like that. She knew that Zen would be fine; the woman was an expert fighter and Dahlia herself wasn't really the best although she could manage in a pinch. Even so, she cast a regretful look in the direction the others had gone and instead began to make her own way to the tavern upon the hill while taking in the Captain's orders for entry and threat for those that let their purpose slip.

    Readying a story and schooling her features to their very most pleasant, Dahlia slipped into the tavern.
  15. "Hey wait - WHERE ARE YOU GOING?!" screamed the Captain furiously. "He disobeyed an order, he disobeyed a fucking order."

    So much for a smooth mission. They hadn't even spent thirty minutes in Guy'ah and already things were turning sour.

    "Things can't get worse. If they do I'm gonna strangle the nearest person I see." Melody clapped Dahlia on the back in response to her comment about switching places. "So long as you don't abandon whatever further orders I give you, fine with me. As far as what we're looking for, I need information. We have nothing to go off of in our search, talk to people, find anything suspicious, see what you can find out."

    As she waited for the rest of her crew to proceed to the tavern, the Captain was busying herself with last minute arrangements. The woman was about ready to set off when a messenger suddenly appeared in front of her, huffing and puffing.

    "Captain Melody S. Regalia of Iwaku?"

    She whipped her head up, inadvertently splashing him with water. "Yes, I am her. What is your business?"

    The young'un, a boy no older than thirteen, bowed deeply at the waist. Melody cast him a questioning gaze, taking in his attire: a white loose dress shirt, trousers and boots. This boy was well off, certainly not someone from these districts.

    "Message from the King and Queen of Guy'ah, ma'am. They are requesting your presence along with your crew at tomorrow's banquet. They wish to give you a proper welcome to our nation."

    Scowling deeply at the boy, Melody broke the wax seal and ripped open the envelope. It was as the boy stated. Tomorrow they were to be at the castle gates when the sun had set and dine with the King and Queen. Declining such an invitation would be considered more than just rude, and Melody didn't want to be responsible for worsening relationships between their two countries. She tucked the paper into her coat pocket, nodding curtly to the boy.

    "Very well, tell your Majesty that we will be present."

    As the boy turned to leave, Melody fought the urge to wrap her hands around his neck. This was definitely an unexpected hitch to her plans. When the last of her party left, the woman couldn't help doing her own huffing and puffing as she stalked up the path to the tavern.

    * * *


    There were indeed a great many people inside the Cbox, as the wall of noise assaulting Delvin's ears were proof enough. A table somewhere in the back of the room supplied the greatest of noise; a large and boisterous group were playing a game of dice. From their vibrant attire and merry faces, it was easy to see that these men were nobles. And if that didn't speak enough of their upbringing, one only had to look at the bags of gold they carried and wagered with.

    But their merrymaking didn't extend to the rest of the patrons - they sat in groups of two or three, sipping at their bitter drinks. It was hard to read their thoughts... Perhaps they were tired from a hard day's work or perhaps they wished to wash away their sorrows with drink? The obvious could be said for a robed woman and her babe. They sat huddled together in the corner of the tavern, her head bowed and the baby bawling till his face was red as a radish.

    A lute player strummed his instrument drunkenly in another corner, adding to the din. He was not a very good musician, but an odd fellow seemed to pay him some mind. He sat alone tapping his foot in an impatient manner, with a tankard of ale in one hand, and parchment in front of him. Unlike the rest of the company, he looked neither grim or happy, instead he was anxious - which was odd. He looked to be a man who smiled and laughed frequently.

    Catching sight of a new face, The Bartender, a woman with brown hair and a charming face, greeted Delvin. "Bit of a stranger aren't you? Don't think I've seen your face 'round here... Wot can I get for you? Ale? Tea? Beer? 'Fraid we don't got much -" She jabbed a thumb toward the nobles " - Nearly made us run dry but I think they've just about drunk all they can. Can't say that I mind too much, they're bringing in coin and goodness the Cbox needs it." The Bartender paused when she caught sight of Dahlia. "Oh bless me, more new faces! Wot can I get you dearie?"

    * * *​

    The hooded figure tore through the streets easily due to their size. While Zen was having to push and shove through the masses of people, her target squeezed in between bodies and tight spaces. It wasn't until Zen was almost completely blocked did she bother to look around her. She spotted Beraeus upon the rooftops and hollered to him,

    "Beraeus, don't lose them!"

    The hooded figure was three quarters of a mile ahead of them, making a beeline for a narrow alleyway.

    She caught a glimpse of David whizzing past, and noticed a pile of crates stacked like stairs. Casting her gaze upwards, Zen grinned at the make shift clothesline, noting how they criss crossed the streets. A gap appeared in the mass of people and Zen took that opportunity to make a mad dash for the crates. Her whip became a make shift handle upon the clothes line and the woman had to pause. She was up two stories after all, what if she fell to her death, or worse, slammed into a wall for the whole street to see?

    "Okay... Deep breaths now. Deep breaths.

  16. Damian walked into the Cbox apparently right behind one of the court members. A quick look at the rest of the crew suggested she was the only one of the court here. Made no difference to him. He took a quick inventory of the patrons and was not impressed, despite the nobles opposite them, this tavern was none too lively and could use a bit of flare. He had seen worse and given their situation they fit right in. He then saw the bright face of the bartender and before anyone else could answer the questions she asked he raised his hand and with a smile said "Yeah, I would love a cup of ale mam. And I don't know about the rest of ya, but I'm gonna take a seat before we hitch another crazy whale ride."

    Just as he was about to move away from the group he noticed the anxious man with the parchment before him and paused for a moment. He leaned back in towards Dahlia and nodded in the man's direction. "Ten to one says we got business with him. Whatcha think?"

  17. Valdus was still standing behind Dahalia when Damian mentioned the man in the corner. 'Ten to one says we got business with him. Watcha think?' Valdus nodded to himself not noticing the man before. He was standing in front of the drunken lute player tapping his foot. Something was defiantly off, no man would come to such a place and be anxious about something unless he held an important meeting with someone about that certain type of business... most likely not legal either. Even if he wasn't part of the group knowing about the ban hammer he would surly be connected to a black market. Valdus, however, did not speak up just yet, he was waiting for something... some kind of hint to what this mans business may be here. Slowly he scanned the area then looked over at the door, he had an odd feeling this tavern was not going to be as friendly as he had hoped... then again he may just be getting paranoid.
  18. David passed up the monk looking chick who was having trouble weaving through the crowd, fortunately for him he had plenty of experience with running through crowds and he was freaking beautiful when it came to sliding and dashing in between people. He knew it was better to take the high ground though when chasing some one through a crowd, but the rooftops were covered and...he looked around briefly to get a glimpse of the monk and he saw her Indiana Jones-ing from some clothes lines. Huh, maybe I should get a whip.

    His head whipped back forward quickly before he could lose the hooded runner. He trailed their path through the crowed making it easier for him to catch up, and even though he was a bit broader than the runner he could squeeze through or jump over what ever obstacles they did. It was one of his favorite pass times. When he looked up ahead after getting a clear view of the runner he saw that they were going for an alley. If they managed to turn a corner when he couldn't see them they may get away. Taking in a couple deep breathes he put on a burst of speed, knocking over a couple of people who hadn't been wise enough to look down the way the first hasty person had come. It was a necessary sacrifice. At the expense of a couple people, he was getting closer.
  19. Beraeus was making good time over the rooftops, unimpeded by the masses of people below. He kept his eyes trained on the hooded figure and, even though he wasn't putting on the extra speed, he was steadily gaining on her. Once he saw her headed for the alley, he knew he could trap her if he just got ahead. He decided to risk it by putting on a small burst of speed, dropping down to all fours and galloping hard, the wind whistling loudly in his ears and making him want to cringe. They'd better have good food at the tavern tonight; he was going to need it. But it was worth it. He reached the mouth of the alley before the fleeing figure and jumped down, landing directly in front of them, his Lochaber axe already drawn. If they turned and ran, the others should be coming up behind very soon.

    "Now wait right there..." he warned, not wanting to hurt the person that might give them a good lead, but not allowing them to run away before they could talk either. He was breathing hard at this point, even though it had not been a very long chase. It had been quite a while since he'd had a good chase, and as much as he hated to admit it, Beraeus was beginning to feel his years.
  20. "Mulled wine if you have it, but tea will be just as lovely if you don't." Dahlia asked above the din of the carousing nobles and the wailing infant and the discordant song of the bard. At the very least if something was to be discussed here, there was a very good chance of it not being heard above this folderol. And it seemed as if this theory were tested as one of the mercenaries she accompanied-Damian, having already greeted and ordered an ale from the barmaid who was busy taking the new orders- leaned back to comment on the anxious-looking man.

    Dahlia paid the woman with a coin and a warm smile, giving Damian a subtle nod of her head as she moved past him. They were on orders from Captain Melody to appear as if they didn't know one another and she would be damned if she was going to flub this up as well. She felt rude, but hoped that the mercenary would understand. He seemed nice enough and she could apologize later.

    She did, however, share his opinion; the stranger who sat tapping his foot anxiously, whose face seemed to not be accustomed to such worry but instead to happier expression seemed totally incongruous with the other tavern patrons around him. It also made her wonder if this was perhaps not blatantly so and merely and odd bit of happenstance that could distract them from other more fruitful sources of information. Taking her warm beverage in hand, thankful for it since he was still chilled from their journey, Dahlia made her way across the tavern and to the man who had caught their attention.

    "I think you have better time than your lute player does, sir." She joked, offering the man a bemused, genuine smile as she indicated his tapping foot. "I mean no offense. Do you mind if I sit here?" She spoke partly to the musician and partly to the man as she settled herself into a chair and sipped the warming brew she held. It was after a few moments of "enjoying" the music that she spoke again. "Please forgive me sir, but is something the matter? You seem better suited to merriment than worry. Talk with me, and maybe we can both forget our troubles for a bit."
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