Steam and Hellfire

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Dahrinn, Oct 11, 2015.

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  1. Steam and Hellfire

    Apollo's Rest.jpg
    In the mountaintop city of Apollo's Rest, there was a stir. There was always a stir... but this particular stir was unlike the everyday stir that normally stirred within the walls of the city. This stir was special, it was an excited and joyous stir, where people flocked to meet a Dragon Hunter. But this particular Dragon Hunter was unlike the everyday Dragon Hunter that hopped on an airship and shot some dragons. This Dragon Hunter was special, in that he was the famed John Caine, landing down at the air-dock, (A dock for airships that is located on an overhang on the mountain.) The magnificent vessel slowly landed down beside a hanging pear, it's engines going from a rumbling roar to more of a quiet hum. It was the Beowulf, a large ship fully armed for dragon hunting. Tied to the bottom was a large, green colored dragon, it was dead, with wounds where the arms and wings split from the shoulder.

    A hiss was heard, and a small jet of steam was released at the site of where a door dropped down on the left side of the ship. Out stepped the famed hunter, John Caine, and his trusted friend, Enki. They were both on opposite ends of a desk, carrying it to the ground. upon finding a spot to place it, they set it down. After them, ten men holding five stretchers brought out wounded individuals, most of them having broken bones, and the like. One of them had a severely mangled right arm, that may require a replacement.

    The two exchanged words, though what words they were was blotted out by the large crowd. They nodded to each-other, and John Caine walked into the city as Enki sat down at the desk, and prepared some papers. He would be handling recruitment this time.

    John Caine was heading to a man named Alton's restaurant. This restaurant was appropriately named "Alton's" and it specialized in serving Dragon. It wasn't that big, and so it was normally crowded, but at this point was only half full. Alton preferred slower business, if this could be called slow business. He knew John was headed towards the restaurant, and dreaded the crowd that may gather outside. Him and his chefs had orders to fill, however, and so Alton kept chopping at a slab of dragon flesh.

    A voice was heard on the city announcement. It was the mayor's.
    *Ahem... Testing... Alright. Recruitment for the Beowulf is starting now, I say again, if you wish to join John Caine on his next few hunts, meet up with either John Caine, who is probably heading to Alton's... or Enki, who is sitting at a desk in front of the Beowulf."
    A brief sound of static was heard before it shut off again.

    The City stirred, celebrating the successful hunt, and anticipating the next. Enki waited for recruits, John walked the streets, and Alton cooked some Dragon flesh.​
    #1 Dahrinn, Oct 11, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2015
  2. Making his way through the city, Cayde was astounded by the sights and sounds. Growing up in a more lower-class and impoverished area, he was so unused to the things he saw in Apollo's Rest. Wide-eyed and slack-jawed, he was like a deer in headlights as he stumbled through the city, amazed by the fascinating things he witnessed. Though, to the locals, he was somewhat of a fascination, his clothes screaming he wasn't from anywhere that was on a map.

    Being raised in Felwinter, his clothes were.. old. While looking pristine, the design and aesthetics told the story of another time. With a sleeveless shirt covered by sleeveless body armor, waist gear and protective gauntlets, anyone that studied history to a mild extent would liken it to the attire of the Felwinter Tribe. Long extinct were they, but they had left their mark as a tribe of primitive people who had managed to combat the monsters of the sky. Yet, as time went on, the lands of the Felwinter Tribe were modernized, but inevitably fell to dragons.

    Some left, but most stayed - too attached to the ruined city to leave it behind. As such, Felwinter became little more than a shanty town - so technologically deprived the people resorted to more archaic methods of living. With corruption and ill-intent blighting its every corner, it slowly became ignored by the populous and more civilized cities and Felwinter was left to rot in its own devices.

    So caught up in the sights and sounds of the city, Cayde paid no attention as he bumped into a large burly man. Quickly saying his apologies to avoid any form of conflict, he darted past him, attempting to clear his head and focus on his purpose for venturing to the city.

    'Right. I must make money.' He stated to himself mentally. Receiving directions to the air-dock, he made his way through the city, hoping he could keep himself out of trouble. Suddenly, to his surprise, he heard a voice over a PA system.

    "*Ahem... Testing... Alright. Recruitment for the Beowulf is starting now, I say again, if you wish to join John Caine on his next few hunts, meet up with either John Caine, who is probably heading to Alton's... or Enki, who is sitting at a desk in front of the Beowulf."

    'Looks like I really lucked out on this one...' He remarked mentally, moving towards the docks with a slight spring in his step.

    Arriving at his destination in a short time, he wasn't surprised to see people were slowly starting to pile in. Pushing his way through the crowd of prospective crewmembers, he ducked down past a group of arguing men before arriving at the desk where Enki set. Immediately Cayde's eyes took in the man's... 'peculiar' appearance. Shifting on his feet, not really knowing what to say, he cleared his throat.

    "My name is Cayde Rivia and I wish to join the crew." He stated his intentions honestly, his tone full of confidence.
  3. 'Country boy, judging by the clothing,' observed Lucif. 'That's not something you see everyday.'

    The twenty-something year old hitman had also heard the recruitment over the PA. Although usually a hunter of humans, Lucif also hunted any animal that gave him a challenge in his free time. As always, Lucif wore a mask that covered his entire face. He was also dressed in his usual armor though it was hidden beneath his cloak and a hood hid his hair.

    Pushing his way pass the growing crowd, Lucif was suddenly pulled back as a man pushed Lucif aside. Lucif's eye twitched under his mask in annoyance as he pulled the man by the back of his collar and spun him around.

    "Wa'tcha want?" growled the man.

    Lucif noticed the smell of alcohol in the man's breath. Not bothering to reply, Lucif drew a long, thin needle. Before anyone could notice, he drove the needle into the man's stomach. The entire process took less than 3 seconds.

    "Thought not," huffed the man with a smirk.

    The man took a step towards the recruitment desk. He suddenly stiffened, and reaching a hand to his stomach, saw blood. The man's mouth opened and closed but no sound came out. He turned his head and stared at Lucif before his eyes rolled up into his head and he dropped dead.

    The crowd grew silent and backed away from the corpse. Lucif, on the other hand, stepped over his deceased victim and made his way to the recruitment table. Lucif stared at the man behind the desk. The man stared back beneath his hood and mask. After a long, awkward silence of two masked men staring at each other, Lucif handed the man a note.

    Lucif Dawl, I wish to join the hunt
  4. As a young man in antique armor walked up, Enki straightened some papers.

    "Very well then, move into the ship, there you will find a round table with some pens on it. Take a copy of this paper and fill out the contract. Good luck."

    A large man walked up, he looked drunk, and so Enki responded accordingly.
    "Sorry sir, we don't allow people to make this descision... while..."

    The man fell to the ground, all of a sudden. And Enki saw the wound in his stomach. Must've been some sort of poison...

    "You there... uh... Cayde! Get in the ship as fast as you can!"

    He turned towards the man who had just put a note on the desk. And paused completely. He leaned forward, revealing that his face was completely covered in bandages save for one eye, which had a tinted monocle over it.

    Enki spoke slowly.
    "So... Was that man going to draw a dagger on me or something similar?"

    John was about a block away, when he noticed the silence of the crowd around the Beowulf. Hesitantly, he kept walking towards Alton's.

    Alton's chopping of Dragon flesh went on, uninterrupted.
  5. Lucif didn't flinch at the man's face but he did sighed internally. Explaining his line of business was always rather complicated.

    He pointed to himself.
    He gestured to the corpse.

    Noticing that the bandaged man did not relax, Lucif held up one of his hands while he slowly reached into his cloak to retrieve a small note book. He flipped through it until he reached the page he was looking for. A rough sketch of the dead man along with news article clippings and some writing. Lucif also retrieved a folded up wanted poster for the dead man from the book. The poster stated that the man, like the bandaged man, was a hunter. However, the poster stated that the man was hunting endangered animals and had even assaulted several other hunters that had tried to stop him.

    Lucif gestured to the corpse again.
    "Hired to hunt him."
    He then pointed to the sky and waved his finger in a circle.
    "Meeting here...coincidental."
    After a pause he pointed to himself again.
    "Legal to hunt with you."

    Lucif stared back at the bandaged man as he prayed a silent prayer that this wouldn't have to get any more messy than it already was. He knew that another man was slowly walking through the crowd towards him, most likely a friend of the bandaged man.
  6. Having been clueless unaware of the events that had occurred behind his back, Cayde was caught up in his own thoughts after hearing Enki's instructions. With eyes focused on the paper, reading over some of the details, he jumped to the side and stepped back when Enki cautioned him to get on the ship. Deciding to comply, he walked at a brisk pace, glancing over his shoulder as he observed the interaction between Enki and another unknown individual, his eyes quickly zeroing in on the dead body.

    'Well, this is pleasant.' He thought to himself, boarding the ship. Asking a crew member for directions, he reached what he assumed to be some form of haphazard lounge with a round table. Taking a seat, his eyes scanned over the contract. There was nothing too extreme, or rather, nothing he wasn't expecting. 'Can't blame them for not wanting to be liable for someone dying while hunting dragons.' He reasoned before picking up a pin and sighing his name.

    Examining his own handwriting, he couldn't help but smile at the way the letters curved and blended into each other. Being a poor farm boy and the son of a prostitute, being smart wasn't something people expected of him, but his mother begged to differ. Even from a young age, late at night, the woman ensured her child would be a fairly intelligent individual. From reading to writing to basic math, she taught him everything he knew and he loved her for it.

    'This is for you, mom.' He said as he signed his name one last time. Setting the pen down, he clasped his hands behind his head and leaned back in his chair, a serene smile on his face.
  7. The party was in full swing at The Blistered Rat. The news of the arrival of the famous John Caine had got everyone into a festive mood, and the beer had flowed. Then, someone had got a little rowdy, insulted someone's mother or wife or sister, and now a brawl was in full force. The band kept resolutely playing their reel, by now fully used to the way the clientele of the Rat entertained themselves. To one side of the brawl, Alyss lounged on a bar stool, nursing a whiskey whilst watching the chaos unfold. She'd always preferred the scummy dives to the high-class coaching houses - far more in the way of entertainment and information. Also, the booze was cheap. As the announcement reverberated across the town of Apollo's Rest, Alyss knocked back her whiskey and slid a coin to the bartender. Sliding off her barstool and onto her feet, she made for the door. Just before she exited, a hand grabbed her arm and pulled her close to a large brute, stinking of sweat and beer.

    "Whossa pretty thing like you doin' 'ere?" The stench seeping from his mouth was, if anything, worse than the stench from his body. "Why don't I take you somewhere we can avva' little fun?" Her jauntiest smile in place, Alyss spun round to face him. "Why don't we have our fun right here, right now?" Following those words, she headbutted him square in the nose, following up with a swift kick to the groin. As he sagged over, doubled up in pain, Alyss leant over and whispered in his ear. "Sorry honey, but I really enjoy the rough stuff." Another kick sent him sprawling into the middle of the brawl, where he was buried within the sea of thrashing bodies. Blowing a kiss towards the section of the crowd he'd crashed into, Alyss spun on her heel and walked out into the daylight.

    Apollo's Rest bustled and heaved. It seemed half the city wanted to see the Beowulf, and the other half wanted to climb aboard. Sauntering towards the docks, Alyss noticed the crowd had backed off, gone quiet. The mysterious first mate Enki and a masked man appeared to be facing each other down. On the floor, a blubberball coated in blood. She vaguely recognised the face from a bounty board...illegal animal hunting or something petty like that. It had seemed a boring job, barely worth the effort it entailed. Clearly the masked man had thought otherwise. Despite the strained atmosphere, she saw no reason to hang back, walking up to the recruitment desk to stand alongside the masked bounty hunter. "'Grats on the bounty. This where I sign on for dragon hunting?"
  8. Mouse heard the announcement better than most. Probably because he had his head inside one of the city's large speakers while he fiddled with some of the various components within. It had been broken, and Mouse wasn't entirely sure if he'd got things right. Well, up until the speaker had boomed with the voice of the mayor, announcing John Caine's presence in the city. It knocked mouse backward, and he almost fell off from his perch atop the speaker if he hadn't grabbed tightly to the pole it was attached to. "Phew," he murmured, relieved that he hadn't fallen to his death.

    The Beowulf...That's a pretty nice ship. I could make some good money on that...Plus, the engines on a ship like that, it'd be heaven... Mouse thought as he easily slid down the metallic pole that held the speakers that would broadcast the mayor's messages through the city, briefly dusting off the rusty-red workman's jumpsuit he wore. It was too big for the ginger-haired boy, but he didn't have anything else. I'll have to grab Watson from back home, but I'd be by the docks anyway, so it shouldn't be much trouble. Breaking into a run to get some speed, Mouse leaped upwards to grab onto the ledge produced by the windows of a nearby building, which he clambered up like a spider, making his way to the roof. From there, he got another running leap onto one of the tracks that criss-crossed the city, taking carts of various materials all over the city. They were a good way to get around, if you knew how to grab onto the carts so you didn't get splattered.

    The mechanic quickly made his way across the tracks with a practiced ease, eventually reaching a bend in the tracks that passed within leaping distance of an old, defunct cannon. Mouse swung from the tracks to the cannon like some sort of monkey, easily landing on the barrel of the massive gun. Sliding down a tube that was made for firing shells, he dropped into a large, rather empty area where soldiers would've been, loading shell after shell into the massive firing chamber. From there, he made his way into the small bedroom he'd made for himself, grabbing the head, arms, and torso of an old automaton, which he'd been in the process of repairing for years. "C'mon Watson, you grease-pissing old shitcake, we've got another fuckin' adventure," he groaned out, lugging the robot-torso onto his back in a backpack that also held the rest of his possessions. He lived a meager existence, and the non-robot contents of the bag could be summed up as followed: Tool kit, goggles, socks, underwear. That, and the jumpsuit he wore at the moment summarized all his possessions.

    Mouse made his way through the city, slipping quickly through the crowd that rapidly was beginning to form. Unable to pass up such easy marks, he found his hands slipping into quite a few pockets, easily liberating various members of the crowd of their coins. The boy didn't feel pride in his work, but hey, he had to eat. Most of his money went to his siblings anyway.

    He made his way to where the sign-ups were supposedly taking place, glancing about. Who am I supposed to talk to? He thought as Mouse realized that he didn't actually know what the famous dragon-hunter looked like.
  9. Enki's gaze shifted between the two mercenaries for a short moment. He gestured to the open door on the ship, and spoke.
    "Take a paper, go in the ship, find the round table, and sign where it says. Try not to kill anyone... again. And when we get to fighting Dragons, mind the pointy bits."

    The crowd parted, again, and two bickering men could be heard, one of them in Dragon-Hunting armor with a wide brimmed hat, the other wearing a simple coat and a black hat.

    The one in the black hatted spoke first.
    "I can't believe I'm letting yah bloody talk me into this, yah mad sonofabitch."

    The other man responded.
    "Calm down. Nobody's putting you on that ship but you."

    The black-hatted man concluded.
    "Well shit, then."

    They made it through the crowd, and stopped dead in their tracks at the dead body on the ground.

    The black-hatted man had one more comment.
    "Fucking magnificent."

    The other man walked up to Enki.
    "Who did this?"

    Enki responded.
    "Bounty hunter. He was a legal target."

    The armored man said;
    "Alright, you've had a long day, you can go in the ship now."

    Enki spoke, with a slightly sarcastic tone.
    "Aye, Captain Caine!"

    Enki got up and went into the ship, and John took his place at the desk.

    As the black-hatted man went in, he and Enki exchanged greetings.
    "Just walked up and already seeing death again! I'm in for a jolly good time aren't I?"

    "Nice to see you too, Alton."

    "Is my gun still in the armory?"

    "Of course."

    "Let me guess. John wants Daggerfoot to be his hundredth Dragon?"

    "Of course."

    "Well double shit, then."

    "...of course."


    He and Enki made it to the round table. Alton sat down and started writing, and Enki leaned up against a wall. As Alton perused the paper, he looked over next to him, and spoke to a young man in odd armor.
    "You get that armor up North? ...I heard that really far North, up in the Frigid Peaks, there are Jackasses trying to shoot down Dragon Hunters. You know anything about them?"
    #9 Dahrinn, Oct 16, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2015
  10. Alyss took a form from the desk and headed in to the ship. Looking over her shoulder, she saw the arrival of two more, one of whom could only be Caine himself. The way he carried himself, along with his ornate armour, showed he was no normal man. Smirking, Alyss turned back and continued. This trip was shaping up to be all she had hoped it would be. When she had been a bounty hunter, she'd consistently had to press on to bigger, more notorious targets - all just to continue to feel alive. And still, that hadn't been enough to keep her going indefinitely. She had ended up hunting some of the most notorious bounties and finding it mundane. So routine. So fucking boring.

    Making her way to the lounge, she found a youth already sat there, wearing antiquated clothing that looked several decades old. Country kid? Kinda cute nonetheless, even if he did look kinda like he'd just started shaving. Signing her papers, Alyss was about to strike up conversation when Enki entered with a swarthy looking brute of a man - kind of like the ones who would wander into ring back home. As the brute began talking to Junior, Alyss watched Enki carefully. The enigmatic mate seemed to be a man of many secrets. Alyss briefly considered striking up some sort of conversation but, short on inspiration as to what to ask about, decided to sit and listen for the time being. Taking a swig from her hip flask, she pulled out her pistols and began to clean and oil them as the warm buzz of the whiskey began to seep through her body, her hands following through the routine motions while her brain tracked the conversation.
  11. 'I wonder how they're doing...?' Cayde pondered mentally, propping his head up with his palm as his elbow rested on the table. Staring at a wall, he quickly found himself bored, having been in the room by himself for what felt like ages. 'Is no one else joining? It'd really suck if I was the only new guy...' He thought as his stomach began to swirl at the prospect of being 'the new guy' all by himself. Even when he had joined the group to hunt the Frostback of Felwinter he had felt out of place in the group of veterans who had all been well acquainted with one another.

    At the sound of the door opening, he glanced over his shoulder and watched as a woman with white hair entered the room. Blinking, he found himself mostly focusing on her hair. Growing up in the country, he wasn't a stranger to people with white hair - but those people were usually old and in their last stages of life, and their hair never seemed so... Vibrant. It was always grey-ish or somewhat silver, never so full of life. Blinking, Cayde felt as though he stared for too long and was happy when Enki and another man entered the room. Observing both of them with keen interest, taking in their strange clothes, he was surprised when the other decided to strike up conversation with him.

    "Felwinter." Cayde replied. "It was made for me before I left out - 'supposed to represent my ancestors or somethin'. As for the 'jackasses trying to shoot down Dragon Hunters', yeah, I know about 'em. A lot times people forget some of us still live in the North, and they'll just dump stuff of their ship. Oil, scrap metal... Makes hard livin' even harder. Though, I can't lie, Frigid Peaks bastards are pretty stupid, and I reckon they'll shoot at anything they don't like or recognize."
  12. Meanwhile, Lucif had, with a swift swish, swish, stab, stab, gouge, gouge, taken his target thumbs, left eye, and both ears. He put his little collection, along with his calling card, into a little satchel, tied it up, and whistled. A kid, no more than about 8 years of age, appeared from the crowd. Lucif tossed the child a coin and handed him the satchel. He then made his way into the Beowulf as the child melted into the crowd once again.

    On the way inside, Lucif saw two newcomers. A well built man, he recognized, was John Caine. The other Lucif also recognized but who's name he couldn't remember. Allen Barney or something like that. Lucif was tempted to go greet the men but decided otherwise when he saw their reaction to his little handiwork.

    Once inside, he took a look at his soon to be crew mates. A country boy and a...oh my. He recognized the woman but, again, couldn't remember her name. He did, however, know that she was a bounty hunter. Their paths had crossed more than once (which usually ended up with Lucif stealing her bounties) but Lucif doubted that the bounty hunter had actually seen him since he preferred using his sniper rifle. Still, his cloak gave nothing away as his hand rested near his knives as he walked past.

    Then again, it seemed like the two had not yet noticed his existence.
    #12 jeshem, Oct 23, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2015
  13. As she finished the oiling of one pistol and moved onto the second, Alyss smiled as the kid spoke. "Clearly haven't been round much, have you kid? Frigid Peaks bastards are dumbasses, but so are bastards everywhere. Guess it's kept me in a job up until now, so I can't complain. Alyss Reindl, Bounty Huntress turned Dragon Huntress. Pleasure to make your acquaintance, Mr..." As Alyss paused, the cloaked figure from earlier swept into the room. The man who had cut down the fatso small fry in front of an audience. So...petty, really. Firstly, the man could have been taken in by anyone with half a brain. Secondly, it would have been trivial to pull off a live capture, which usually carried a heavier reward. Thirdly, doing it in front of the audience was just so unrefined really. No elegance whatsoever. "Really made a mess out there, huh? Sod was barely worth the coin alive, let alone dead." Alyss paused for a second, tutting. "Guess it takes all sorts. Presume you're a Bounty Hunter?"
  14. Lucif looked at the bounty huntress and nodded, his cloak still hiding his hands from sight. He didn't really enjoy being criticized but being seen as petty was always better than being seen as a psycho (which he was not).

    "Not worth much...true," the bounty hunter shrugged. "But convenient...meeting here. Easy kill...easy money."

    Lucif's eyes scanned the bounty huntress from under his mask. Guns strapped to her legs didn't help Lucif relax.

    As long as the bounty huntress didn't recognize me or acted hostile, Lucif thought, this hunting trip could go rather smoothly.
  15. Inclining his head in agreement to Alyss' statement, Cayde let out a quiet chuckle.

    "I 'spose that is true. Certainly feels like bastards make the world go round." He spoke through a soft laugh. "Mr...? Oh. Me. I'm not much of a 'mister', ma'am. Cayde Rivia of Felwinter, farm-boy turned dragon-hunter." He introduced himself formally, deciding to just be honest. During his time of travel, he had considered time and time again of weaving some intricate story of his life, but he figured he may as well just take pride in who and what he is. If anything, he personally found it more impressive that a farm-boy could take down a dragon. He had to admit he got lucky with the killing shot, but at the end of the day he did get the kill.

    Glancing to the side when Alyss' attention switched to the cloaked-figure, Cayde could feel his eyebrows scrunch up in confusion. He clearly remembered Enki telling him to quickly get on the ship when the man appeared, and now all of a sudden he was joining the crew? Listening to Alyss speak, the young man slowly began to piece things together.

    'Bandage-guy probably saw tall, dark and mysterious drop that other guy and wanted to get me out of the way in case things escalated... Huh, I'll have to thank him for that, I guess.' He concluded mentally, making a note to speak with Enki once more.
  16. Alton finished signing the nessescary documents, and handed them to Enki.

    Upon sitting back down, he decided to speak what he was thinking.
    "I'm dragged kicking and screaming from my restaurant, see a dead body on the way in, and the guy who made the dead body is here with me, and now two people are discussing the finer points of killing behind me. Let me guess, next time I want some fresh air, The Crow Man himself swoops down, and takes a shit on me! Well, I'll be inspecting the kitchen and dining hall. If someone dangles some money in your face to kill me, please knock before breaching the door and blowing my head off."
    He promptly got up and walked away, in the direction of the dining hall.

    Enki shifted uncomfortably in his spot leaning up against the wall.
    "Don't mind him. He'd be complaining if you were any other professional as well. He probably doesn't believe he'll survive this time."

    He paused to stare at the floor.
    "Have any of you seen a live Dragon?"
  17. Perking up as Enki spoke, Cayde nodded his head.

    "The Frostback of Felwinter. Size of a windmill and had breath so cold it burned. Spent a day tracking it through Frigid Peaks and found its nest on a frozen plateau. Went in with seven, came out with three, myself included." He said before reaching into a satchel he had brought with him. Rummaging through it, he carefully retrieved a medium-sized bundle before placing it on the table, carefully unwrapping the frosted cloth to reveal a pristine piece of Cryocite. Pushing it across the table in Enki's direction, he motioned towards it.

    "This and a scar on my lower back is the only proof I got, so it's up to you whether you believe me or not." He said, half-expecting Enki to not believe his tale. Most of the people he told didn't believe him - they'd look at him and just see a kid that was still wet behind the ears; but, the people of Felwinter and his mother knew and that was more than enough to fill him with pride regardless of how many people denied his involvement in the slaying of the dragon due to general disbelief.
  18. Lucif couldn't help but to let out a chuckle at the black hatted man's outburst.

    "Careful..what you wish for," he joked as the man left the room.

    His attention turned back to Enki. Staring at the floor...embarrassment?

  19. As Alton left, Alyss sighed. Why was it that people always assumed bounty hunters were bloodthirsty killers? She'd always brought as many back alive as she could (hardly an easy feat in itself), but sometimes there was no option, no choice but to kill. Some bastards never gave you any other choice. Then people like the Hood go round carving up minor criminals on the streets, and that was what they all saw. A drunk fat man assassinated by a masked killer. What a great version of justice that was.

    "Gotten used to it. Not over it, but used to it. No matter how ill-deserved, being in this job grants you a reputation from the moment you walk in. Never hunted down a dragon, but I did see one. Huge golden specimen. Right as I was waiting for the spiked booze I'd left in a bandit camp to take effect. It seemed so much more...intimidating than them. Been in my line of work too long. Joy's gone out of it, challenge has gone out of it. That dragon...looked fun. Looked a challenge."
  20. Lucif took mental notes of the other two newcomers.

    The country boy, Cayde. Why did he look like he expected Enki to laugh in his face? Low self-esteem? Experienced prejudice?

    The bounty huntress, Alyss. Possibly knowledgeable in drugs, maybe poison. A thrill seeker.

    Alyss seemed to have something against him. True, his last kill was poorly done. The wound was too big, letting blood flow out. He had also stood still from where he had stabbed from, allowing the man to easily turn around and incriminate him of the murder. All amateur mistakes. However, everyone seemed to have mistaken him for a bounty hunter, not a contract killer. He was paid good money by an individual to kill another individual, not to capture and hand over to the law enforcers. Better to keep it that way.
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