Tales of Skyrim IC

Discussion in 'ROLEPLAY GRAVEYARD' started by Kinton Nyr, Sep 5, 2014.

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  1. Ketty opened her eyes. The room was almost completely dark, had it not been for a single candle barely lighting up the nearest corner. Her eyelids felt quite heavy on her face, as if something was trying to force her to sleep, but she fought this feeling and rubbed her eyes to keep herself awake. The silence seemed to echo around the small box of a bedroom, and she could feel a tiny object gently heaving up and down at the edge of her bed. She pulled herself up into a sitting position, only to see the creature rise its head and stare at her for a few seconds. It then proceeded to move towards her across the bed, before falling onto her lap. As her sight began to strengthen with time, she could see her dog Cyrus cosying up against her. She smiled and stroked the pet, as she waited for the sun outside to rise. Carwyn had mentioned something about going hunting at first dawn for snowy sabre cats at Greywater Grotto.
     
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  2. Loïc was tired, he had spent most of the night clearing out Bloodlet throne of a vampire infestation and things hadn't gone completely as planned. The sheer amount of vampires in there was something he did not expect and as though that wasn't bad enough, the place was filled with traps as well. Had he not known enough restoration magic, he would've bled to death from all the injuries he sustained, still though, there were no restoration spells for his equipment and gear; his axes had dulled, his armor was damaged, his bolts were running low and he was down to his last disease curing potion.

    As he stood on the crossroad in the mountains he questioned whether he should take the short road through the mountains toward the rift, past Haemar's shame and risk getting attacked by bandits, wolves or worse while in his less than optimal situation before he could so much as reach Riften, let alone fort Dawnguard. Or take the long road through Falkreath, Riverwood and Ivarstead during which he could get his gear fixed, stop by the alchemist and even sleep in a proper bed the moment he reached the foot of the mountain. Though, if he chose the latter option, he'd have to go through Helgen, a notorious bandit camp. He had gathered a decent amount gold from the corpses of the vampires and their thralls, perhaps he could pay them for passage? Or perhaps they would get greedy and overwhelm his already weakened person with sheer numbers in an attempt to claim even more riches. decisions, decisions...

     
  3. Kararq woke up, waking with a yawn. He pulled on his armor, traditional Redguard garb with a twist: underneath, it was chainmail. He fixed his helmet/turban, and sheathed his scimitar and a long Redguard knife, more like a sleek short sword. He stepped into his boots and opened the door of room and walked into the common room of the Dragonsbridge inn. Even though it was morning, some men were guzzling beer. Shaking his head, Kararq bought a quick breakfast from the innkeep, gathered his belongings, and went on his way. As Kararq stood on the porch of the inn, he scanned the roadways for Stormcloaks, who could and would cause a problem for him i he bumped into the them. He resented the Stormcloaks. They discriminated against everyone who wasn't a Nord. Under Imperial rule, there was one of that. He sighed and shook his head. After his time in the Legion, and the final defeat at Solitude, he had fled, heading ti Whiterun. Many former legionnaires settled in, and waited for a chance to help the Empire bring back Imperial rule. In the meantime, though Kararq had become a spellsword. Skilled in the sword and magic, he sold his services to caravans, travelling nobles, and many others. He was also a bounty hunter, killing those who had a price on their heads. He explored cairns and barrows, and the old dragon burial sites. Kararq paused thoughtfully as he headed to his waiting horse, Nightmare. He then pulled out his map and looked at the cairn that was to be his destination. Korvanjund. From what he hear there was a battle there during the civil war, but at the time, he'd been stationed in the forts surrounding Solitude. Kararq looked for the most direct route, then saddled Nightmare and pulled himself in. He guided the horse onto the road, then let her walk at a steady trot. Even though he looked as if he were relaxing Kararq was scanning the wilderness to the sides of the roads to detect bandits and thieves. As he leaned over an scratched the small of his back, he decided that after Korvanjund, his next mission would be to find a suitable companion, as 2 swords is better than one, and he couldn't do everything himslef. The horse continued its trot and Kararq continue his vigil.
     
  4. Nattog sat on a rock beside a road, sharpening her battle axe, running a honing blade along its weary edge. She had traveled all night, fighting bandits and vicious fauna along the way, dried blood flaking from her armor as the sun rose higher. The orc looked tired, not in the way that a lack of sleep makes one appear tired, but in the way that a long life of travel and fighting gives you. Nattog had traveled Skyrim since the civil war had first started, she knew it like the back of her hand, but with nowhere to go and nowhere to stay she wandered with only the goal to fight. She would fight for any cause, glorious or not, anything that would give her a reason to keep going until she could find her own way.

    Dragging the honing stone down the edge of the blade one last time, she pocketed the stone and leaned the axe against her shoulder, holding onto it for support. For now she would rest her feet and decide where to go next.
     
  5. Rura awoke from her sleep within the Falkreath Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary. She rolled out of her bed or at least the bed she keep her stuff at and basically claimed. Rura looked up and decided to wear her travel gear not her assignation armor. She went to find Astrid to see if a new contract was ready for her. "Sorry Rura I don't have a major one for you right now go talk to Nazir he has found some minor victims for us to attend to." Ruara just nodded and went to find Nazir in his usual location within the Kitchen. "Hello Rura. I'm betting your wondering if I have anything extra for you right now." She nodded. "Ah yes that's what I thought. There is something a Berton. Dancon Melitrose he is located in The Winking Skeever in Solitude." She looked at Nazir as though questioning if there was anything else she need to know. "Just be careful to stay hidden and he is a old Imperial Soldier so I wouldn't underestimate him." "Thanks Nazir." She took the accepted and decided that she had no need to change into the Dark Brotherhood armor for it would give her away and she was headed for a local tavern. She passed Astird on her way who stopped her. "Be safe and we might have the Nightmother come join us in our sanctuary very soon." Rura nodded and left the Sanctuary.

    Rura began to head towards Solitude she decided that on foot would be better for she could take her time and maybe discover some areas she might not have quiet yet because of the Civil War that had taken place seven years ago for she had just recently began to every now and again wonder farther off within some areas, but she still had not discovered everything.
     
  6. Nightmare's hooves plodded against the cobblestone roads around Whiterun. Kararq had led an uneventful trip from Solitude to Whiterun. He figured he could take some bounties from Jarl Graymane. As Nightmare continued her steady walk, he thought about paying a visit to his old friend once he got back up around Solitude, Dancon Melitrose. They had served together during the civil war, and Dancon had been in his squad of heavy infantry. They'd soon clicked and became the best of friends. Kararq also liked Dancon because he was fiercely loyal to the Emperor. Anyway, as Kararq turned Nightmare towards the Whiterun gates, he noticed a silent figure, female, he was guessing, heading northwards on the road. She was clad in a dark cloak, and he couldn't see underneath, but he did get a glimpse of a red and black color scheme and a handprint. He shrugged, and continued into Whiterun.
     
  7. From what Ylva had experienced so far Skyrim was a dreary place. The stone walls of Windhelm, the seemingly eternal snow, the dark skies all added up to depress her. The only comfort she had was the knowledge that she'd never be sought out here along with a piece of stale bread, a mug of ale and a warm fire in Candlehearth Hall. It'd been a long day. Ylva's traditional Skaal clothing still carried traces of Solstheim on them, the fur coated with ash from the Red Mountain. The Northern Maiden had carried her across the sea, a journey she'd spent terrified and sick. Even the salty spray of the ocean hadn't calmed her then and if it wasn't for the gold Ylva had shoved into the captain's hand she was sure he would have said something. When they'd finally arrived in Skyrim, with the walls of Windhelm cutting through the fog Ylva missed Solstheim more than ever.

    The dark stone that made up the dock had felt chilling and unwelcoming to her, no matter how suave the captain had been. She'd also been wary of the Argonians milling about like slaves - at first she hadn't recognized them as Argonians were rare to come by on Solsthiem. Ylva couldn't shake the hostile vibes coming off from them and she'd made her way into the city as quick as possible. The inside of Windhelm hadn't proved to be any better. The guards were friendly enough to point her towards the inn but Ylva could sense the tension in the city, taut enough to break at any moment. She hadn't thought it'd be possible to miss the life she'd had on Solstheim but as the night dragged on she became more and more homesick.

    Not that anybody cared, if anything she was the perfect customer for Elda Early-Dawn, the proprietor of the inn. Quiet, drinking away her problems and renting a room - she was perfect. It helped that she was a Nord as well, if a rather exotic one at that. Ylva hiccuped and went to bed, purchasing another five bottles of Nord Mead. The alcohol would help set her at ease and help with her sleep, something her beast blood tampered with. As she began her alcohol binge, Ylva caught small snippets of conversation between Elda and another customer concerning the health of their Jarl, Ulfric Stormcloak. Apparently the man was deathly ill. It was interesting gossip she embraced as it took her mind away from the events on Solstheim.
     
  8. The sunlight began to seep into the room through the single barred window positioned precisely in the centre-top of the furthest wall. As soon as she had noticed this, Ketty gently brushed Cyrus off her lap and threw herself out of the bed with a burst of enthusiasm. As she made her way towards the door and down the corridor, she managed to trip over a stone which had most likely made its home there by the wall for a number of years. Letting out a small gasp as she regained her balance, she mentally cursed as to why they hadn't yet cleared out the keep of rubble. Of course, most of Helgen Keep had been rebuilt, albeit terribly, in order to contain the thirty or so bandits who Carwyn's followers consisted of, however a lot of debris still remained behind covered in ashes. The town too remained devastated from the infamous dragon attack which had apparently struck Helgen almost a decade ago. Ketty herself doubted that this was the work of a dragon, believing that the Stormcloaks had very deviously plotted the rescue of Ulfric Stormcloak following his capture by the Imperials. After all, it was understandable that the Empire would want to go through so much trouble to frame the dragons, as to prevent giving the Stormcloaks credit for their brave feat and lessen the popularity of Skyrim's people.

    Regardless of the truth behind the destruction, all Ketty had known was that Carwyn didn't wish to repair the town in order to uphold the illusion that Helgen was still uninhabited so that potential victims in the form of wanderers and nomads seeking shelter were lured to them, or to keep away rival bandit factions. It was rather hypocritical though, as Carwyn didn't refrain from thrusting wooden spikes through the human skulls they had collected in battle and hanging them at Helgen's gates as some sort of sick warning or decoration. She let her mind wander aimlessly until a voice abruptly broke off her train of thought.

    "Ketty, over here."

    The voice was deep and hoarse, and without the need to turn her head, she instantly responded to the recognisable voice of Carwyn Alder by approaching him with a wave. Carwyn sported a large grin as he passed her a steel greatsword. Ketty took the sword and began to undress her robes, as she took her fur armour from the stall against the wall of one of the houses.

    "We're going to collect a lot today," Carwyn informed her with a smile. "I heard talk of a precious gem, a ruby, uncut, abandoned by its previous owner."

    "I hope we can get there before someone else does," she said, as she fitted on her fur clothing. "I bet that ruby is worth something in Whiterun."

    "Sell it?" Carwyn spoke loudly, almost mockingly. "No, I intend to keep it as a prize."
     
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  9. Lachlan stood comfortably by the entrance of the keeps tower before he moved towards both Ketty and Carwyn who seemed to be in deep conversation about a ruby of some sort at the grotto. Had he actually have been accompanying his father and his ward to the grotto it wasn't the ruby that would have been on his mind but rather the snow sabre cats. Prowling. Seeking. Waiting. This reminded him all too much of his fathers way of living. How they bounced upon their carefully selected targets with no need for the disguise of night but simply brute strength.

    "Sell it, Father," Lachlan suggested as his father was made aware of his sons arrival. "A ruby could buy us a lot of good stuff, whereas hoarding such worthy and valuable things would be like not using a sword in battle cos it looks good. Pointless."
     
  10. Rura was almost at Solitude but first she had to take care of bandits which had tried to ambush her. 'Great I hope this doesn't take long I want to reach The Winking Skeever before nightfall so I can decided on how to kill my target.' She took out her sword and shield and began fighting back against the bandits. She quickly beheaded one that was in front of her and after taking a hit to her left arm she hit the bandit behind her with her shield making him stagger she then stabbed her sword straight through his back. Finally after about an hour they were all defeated. She then began to search them for gold, lock-picks, food, and other goods that she might want. Finally when she was done she looked up at the sky. 'I better get a move on. But I don't have to kill him immediately... I'll decided when I get there. I do still have to find who he is first.'

    Rura put up her sword for the time being till she needed it again. Rura began to head once more towards Solitude. Finally she arrived about 3 hours latter. She went to The Winking Skeever and began to look for Dancon Melitrose and to hear any rumors that were going around. 'Maybe I'll here something to pass the time before I head back to the Sanctuary.' She went over to the owner of The Winking Skeever and asked for a room for the night. Then she headed over to one of the tables listing for the past imperial soldier known as Dancon Melitrose.
     
  11. Although her beast blood affected her sleep Ylva found it did little to dilute the effects of a strong Nord drink. Her head pounded and her tongue felt fuzzy to the point where she expected to scrape fur off it. She growled a curse before gulping down the last dregs of the bottles and heading out. It was early morning, with the sun just peeking out beyond Windhelm's walls. Only the quiet mutterings of the few awake at this hour echoed through the inn. Elda Early-Dawn, true to her name, offered Ylva a few more drinks to "wash down your headache." She bought it without a second glance, not noticing the shrewd glimmer in the older woman's eyes as she eagerly exchanged drink for coin. Ylva decided to explore Windhelm properly today. Perhaps there would be someone to point her on her quest to cure herself.

    Candlehearth Hall may had been run by a scheming old gossip but at least it was warm. The weather of Skyrim was not much different from Solstheim's North and Ylva was glad for her Skaal outfit protecting her. The wind nipped at her ears as she strode around the city. So far, there had been few outside save for the town guardsmen. It was a confusing and stuffy city. Ylva hated the miserable rock walls, the Palace of Kings barred entry and the Grey Quarter was full of bitter Dunmer folk, a stark contrast from Raven Rock. Who wouldn't be bitter in this place. Ylva thought to herself before returning to Candlehearth Hall. The people would soon be up. Windhelm was a dangerous city to be in. It was close to the docks where rumours flowed as easily as water from a broken dam.

    Although Ylva doubted she'd be chased all the way to Skyrim, it was a risk she couldn't afford. It was better to lose herself in the wilderness of Skyrim than be killed in the streets of Windhelm. The runaway bought food, drink and checked herself out before making her way out of the city and into the world.

    The fresh air outside brightened her mood considerably. Wind always helped her think. The cold kick started her brain into motion. Skyrim was an alien place to her, even though she was a Nord. Although her rapdily lightening pocket told her otherwise, Ylva saw no other way to navigate the country than to hire a carriage. It was either that or wander around in the wilderness. Hearing the sounds of the city waking up, she picked up her pace and jogged on over to the Windhelm stables.

    "Hello. I'm trying to go somewhere." She ended awkwardly, not knowing the names of the places in Skyrim.

    "Uh huh. Well, you've come to the right person. Alfarinn is my name and places are where I go. The only things I ask concern my fee and where you want to go. So where will it be, lass?" The carriage driver spoke with the air of a bored man who'd recited his line one too many times.

    "..."

    "Well? Can't wait here all day, you know. I've got places to be."

    "I... I don't remember." Ylva slurred her words, conveniently dropping an empty bottle to catch his eye. It hurt her pride to act drunk but to admit she knew nothing of the land would hurt more.

    "Drunk eh? Drunken coin is still coin. How 'bout I just take you to the nearest Hold? Twenty septims for a ride to Whiterun, strange lady."

    Ylva felt slightly foolish then, as she handed over the gold and climbed into the back. She felt as if he'd seen through her little act. It was silly to lie like that. She closed her eyes and let the rhythmic rattling of the carriage carry her to sleep, even though she knew she'd get no rest from it.

    "You ever see Whiterun? Right little jewel of the province, I'd wager. More cheerful than this sorry place anyhow. What's a Skaal like you doing here anyway?"

    Ylva's eyes shot wide open before she warily reached for the bow on her back. "How did you know?"

    "What do you mean? Windhelm's dock's the only passage between Solstheim and here. Your accent, clothes - by Talos, even a Khajiit skooma addict could tell."

    He didn't seem like a threat, nor a spy. However, the carriage driver had a big mouth which could cause trouble for her if anyone came looking. After all, it wasn't everyday a Skaal left their homeland. Ylva sighed before taking her hands off her bow. He hadn't even noticed. There was nothing she could do to deny it now and she was too tired to argue anyway.

    "I don't know if I can call myself a Skaal anymore." She muttered gloomily before turning away to face the side.

    "... Whatever you say Skaal. Say, what's with your folk and the thing you call the All-Maker? Never understood how fellow Nords could throw away Talos so easily."

    Ylva sighed. It was going to be a long ride and the solo trek through the wilderness was looking more and more desirable by the second. She hoped that they would reach this Whiterun place soon.
     
  12. "Thank you," Ketty replied, when Lachlan had finished speaking.

    As Lachlan walked up towards her and Carwyn, she smiled politely. Lachlan was incredibly well-dressed for a member of a group of bandits who used little more than leather and fur for their clothing. He was a very young and slender man, a little younger than Ketty, but far more mature and wise for her liking. She didn't know very much about Lachlan, but she did know that he was very interested in magic and alchemy. He usually disappeared for hours, sometimes days, studying in the keep on his own, whereas she would prefer to be outside with the men clashing swords in sparring. Carwyn gave his son a stern look before nodding, and turning around.

    "You're right," he agreed, as he placed his hand on the hilt of his sword and lifted his shield in his other hand. "Are you ready, lass?"

    "I'm set," she smiled, as she strapped the steel great sword to her back and followed Carwyn towards four other bandits who were brandishing similar weapons. Once they had reached their fellow bandits, to number six in total, they headed out of Helgen's gates and jogged on their way to Greywater Grotto.
     
  13. Loïc might've been pondering his decision for a bit too long and by the time he had reached the conclusion that traveling through the mountains was safest, albeit most annoying and exhausting, he could already hear a group of men heading his way. Half a dozen, he counted but by the sound they made there might as well have been fifty... or one kitchen heading his way.

    The crossroads didn't provide much in the way for cover and on a clear morning like this he could be seen running from a mile away. Besides, he was tired, they were not, he was alone, they were not. They'd catch up to him in no time and then he'd have to fight not tired, but exhausted. So he waited for them to come to him, though they wouldn't catch him off guard. with one hand ready to draw his axe and another ready to cast a ward in case there was a mage among them, he stood there facing them. If he was lucky they'd realise that killing a member of the dawnguard is in the end the same as killing an ally, or at the very least an enemy of their enemy. Then again there was no guarantee that they would recognise his armor or weapons as that of his order, and even if they did they might not care. He would see, aye, he would see...
     
  14. Ketty kept up her pace. With Carwyn right beside her, she couldn't fall behind. She thought back to one of her first hunting trips with them. There were ten in all, and they were ambushed by another group of bandits. There were no fatalities, although Carwyn's younger brother Roger had received a nasty blow to his shoulder and they had to amputate his arm. She had been unable to match their pace and wondered, if she had been there in time, could she have saved him from the injury? Now, Roger has to stay behind in the camp and maintain order there, but his accident had left him bitter, cruel and unpleasant. She enjoyed Carwyn's presence because, in spite of his twisted grasp of pride, honour and glory, he was a rather generous and cheerful warrior. The type you could learn a lot from both in and out of combat. Carwyn looked towards her and winked, but the group eventually came to a halt as they spotted something in the distance.

    "What's that over there?" asked one of the men behind her, as he drew his bow.

    "It's a deer," Carwyn said, in a deep voice. He edged closer towards the deer, which was only half-visible behind the trees on a further part of the road. Unsheathing his sword, he charged in the direction of the deer, roaring in an almighty voice, and leaped out. The deer barely had enough time to flee when Carwyn reached it, but the fierce bandit chief didn't bury his sword into the deer's rear as it turned, instead thrusting his blade into the air. Ketty and the others were startled by Carwyn's choice of actions, and by the time they had sprinted to his position by the crossroads, they could see why. A lone man stood at the crossroads, warily, and clearly affected from fatigue. He would be an easy target, Ketty thought, as although his armour and weapons seemed notable, they were evidently quite damaged. Ketty lifted her steel great sword as Carwyn readied his shield and pointed his sword at the man.

    "Why are you standing there?" Carwyn demanded loudly, his beard shivering as he opened his mouth. The group spread out across the path. "It seems to me like you were expecting us?"
     
  15. "Stay your blade brigand, I mean you no harm," Loïc said, but remained wary. These bandits before him were obviously already counted the gold in his pockets as half of them had already drawn their weapons and the other half was ready to. "I'm a member of the dawnguard, vampire hunters you could say, I merely seek passage through Helgen. If you would grant me safe conduct, I will pay you and no one has to get hurt. If you would choose that my death has more value than my gold then I must warn you," He drew his axe and activated, but not released, a fireball spell with his left hand, the fire building in his palm waiting to be released and rain fire and death upon its surroundings. "I have faced more monsters than you have men right now and I'm still walking. My hide will not be cheap."
     
    #15 caligari, Sep 9, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2014
  16. "I don't take kindly to threats," Carwyn growled, as he stepped closer to the man on the path. Raising his sword into the air, he readied himself to fight. "Be it Dawnguard, Thalmor or the Dark Brotherhood, nobody gets in my way."

    "Hold on," Ketty said, as she stepped in front of her chief. "There's no need to fight if he's offering coin, is there? He might be more trouble than he's worth."

    Carwyn glared at Ketty for a moment, his eyes fixed onto hers. She returned the stern look, refusing to avert her gaze. Carwyn narrowed his eyes and then nodded his head, stepping back and lowering his swordarm. He then turned his vision back to the man, as did Ketty, and the others behind them also lowered their weapons.

    "Safe passage, you say?" Ketty asked, as she lowered her great sword. "Do you wish to stop there for a while? For a small amount of coin, I'm sure we can come to some sort of arrangement. Isn't that right, Carwyn?"

    "For a worthwhile amount of coin, perhaps," Carwyn agreed.
     
  17. Loïc was dubious, but hopeful of the offer. It was true that bandits could only be trusted to cut your throat if you would let them, but offer enough gold to them and they could be as loyal as valued mercenaries, that is until the gold runs out. "Only passage, unless you have a blacksmith or alchemist, then perhaps we can come to some arrangement." He sheathed his axe and extinguished the flames in his hand. "Name a price, whether it is fair or not shall determine how the rest of this day plays out..."
     
  18. Kararq walked up the hill that was Whiterun, towards Dragonsreach. As he walked he looked around, observing the faces and lives of the people. The Battle-Born, of course were looking glum and very unhappy, but some, especially Heimskr, the preacher of Talos, whose very voice grated on Kararq's nerves until he wished he could shove his scimitar through the man to shut him up. As Kararq shook his head and continued up the stairs leading to the Jarl's palace. But as he reached the doors, a guard put his hand out, saying "Who are you and what's your business with the Jarl?"
    "I am Kararq Zzerassz. A mercenary and a freelancer. I wish to speak to the Jarl or his steward about bounties." The guard nods and goes inside to ask if the Redguard man is allowed inside. As he returns, he is shaking his head. He glares at Kararq, "The Jarl refuses to see anyone affiliated with the Legion." Kararq had led a detachment of Legionnaires, sent to flush out Stormcloaks, their supporters, and their families in the region of Whiterun. He'd managed to nab the family of a man named Ralof, from Riverwood. The poor little village had fallen into disrepair after the family that had run the mill was forced to leave, sent to jail. Without the mill, the village made very little money. As a result, Kararq was hated by all the residents, not just the Nords.
     
  19. Rura had sat down and listened to a group and learned that Dancon Melitrose was sharing a conversation with a group of old friends. Finally they had left and Melitrose was basically alone he had also rented a room in The Wrinkling Skeever. He headed to his room and slowly Rura followed. She quietly closed the door behind the two and waited to see if he would sit down or sleep. He seemed to feel uneasy but didn't seem to look for anyone. Finally about an hour latter he had lied down. Slowly Rura took out her sword and walked closer to his bed. She made sure he was not awake and quietly but quickly slit Dancon Melitrose throat. She then took any gold he had to add to her pay and slowly walked out. She then stood out of sneak and walked to her room and made sure her blade was clean and that she looked as a normal adventure not an assassin of the Dark Brotherhood so no one should question her. She then lied down for sleep before she then she would decide what tomorrow she would do she would either decided on waiting to return or return to see if there was a contract or if the Nightmother had arrived.
     
  20. "How about a hundred septims?" Ketty asked, shrugging her shoulders. Carwyn stepped forwards aggressively.

    "Two hundred septims," he intervened. "That's our lowest offer."

    Ketty looked at the chief and sighed, before smiling. She looked at the man at the crossroad, who had now put away his weapons and seemed less threatening. Carwyn was glaring in the man's direction and breathing heavily and deeply, but he too was clearly in a more passive mood now.

    "We have a blacksmith," she said, nodding her head. "And an alchemist, of some sort."

    "Is that a deal or not?" Carwyn demanded.
     
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