The Hunted

Discussion in 'ROLEPLAY GRAVEYARD' started by SpaceCowboyEin, Aug 9, 2016.

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  1. Characters

    Kaegan Pravost
    • 27 Years Old
    • Head of the Pravost Clan[name pending]
    • Lvl 5 Combat, lvl 2 magic
    • Lived a rough and tumble life under another bandit clan
    • Has recently split from said clan to start his own with the intentions of uniting the country.
    Rhea Mistral
    • 26 yr old
    • Blacksmith’s daughter
    • Lvl 4 magic, lvl 2 combat
    • Probably lived a very quiet and simple life up until now
    • Fell in love with a commoner when she was supposed to be married off to a noble
    • Noble dood killed her bf, and framed her for the murder.
     
  2. It had all happened so fast.

    Rhea hurriedly stuffed her bag with whatever was closest -- a winter jacket, an extra set of underclothing, some dried meats and fruits from the kitchen, some bandages and a basic healing salve. This wasn't enough to last her for however long she knew she was going to be gone, but Rhea at least knew that she was going to be gone a long, long time. In moments, her life had shattered. Jeremiah, gone. Her dear Jeremiah. No matter the trials they had been faced with, even the fact that they were going through a bit of a rough patch, Rhea knew her heart had belonged to him, and always would, no matter what. And now he was dead. Not only that, murdered.

    She'd not been given a moment to mourn him, though her cheeks were stained with dried tears as she slung her bag over her shoulder and hurried out of her room without giving it the proper goodbye she knew it deserved. "Papa," She breathed quietly as Rhea stepped into the blacksmith and moved closer to her father. The Blacksmith was a large man, almost as broad-shouldered and buff as a dwarf. Though Rhea herself was long and elegant, he towered over her without question. He swept his daughter into his arms in a tight embrace and kissed her on the cheek, his mustache scratching her cheek like it always did. "Stay safe, my darling." He murmured. Her father knew of her situation -- he knew his precious daughter would never do such an atrocious thing, especially not to the man she loved.

    It had all been the fault of Damien LeStans, and they both knew it. But against a man in such a high position of power.. there was no helping it. Not when he had to be sending guards upon her any moment.

    "Rhea Mistral!" A voice boomed from outside. "By royal decree you are sentenced too--" Rhea heard nothing after that, because she'd already bolted out the back door, running as fast as her legs could carry her. Where she was going, well.. Rhea had not quite planned that far ahead. All she'd known is if there was any hope of her even making it past sundown, she'd need to get away. Unfortunately, she hadn't gotten far before she heard shouts of the guards that had spotted her. Their heavy armor did help to slow them down some as they chased Rhea, but it would not be as easy to outrun them as she had hoped.

    She ran constantly looking back over her shoulder, and that was what lead her to crash right into the chest of a man she did not know. Rhea stumbled back, disoriented and fearful of whomever this man could possibly be. And upon further inspection, she could see that his ears were not pointed, not even in the slightest. A human. From the badlands? A bandit? He looked grizzly, and certainly fit the profile. But all things considered, he looked strong and capable. Rhea bit her lip and stared into his eyes, desperately trying to figure him out and if she could perhaps trust him on the fly.

    Before she could make her decision, six guards had turned around the corner and surrounded the two. Rhea moved behind the man, back-to-back, and with a deep breath, a shield separated on her arm, giving off a shimmering blue glow. "Think you could help a girl out?" Rhea breathed. Worth a shot.
     
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  3. It had been one week since Kaegan had left Euphius, and his old life, behind. He was now the proud leader of a several dozen man strong bandit clan that was finally striking out on its own. It wasn't easy, and still wasn't to go take on the world. Many in his previous clan laugh at his aspirations for ruling over the entirety of Calgary and taking down the wall that had split the country so long ago. They thought it was crazy, that the two worlds could not coexist and that one would have to eliminate the other. But Kaegan saw it differently, the two societies were not enemies, and would be make to cooperate only under a ruler strong enough to instill either fear or respect out of them. And the only way to do that would be to obtain Olinar's Gauntlet and use it's destructive powers to this time unite Calgary rather than split it. And it would all be for the good of them all, for if the Viir Empire reared its ugly head in their lands, they would all die. He didn't know how long he'd have, but he knew that obtaining the gauntlet would be paramount to his success.

    But until then, he had to focus on the smaller things, like keeping his men fed and safe. Everyone took turns patrolling the woods around their raiding camp. They'd been making trouble for local villages and royal watch posts and were eating well and making good money, but now guard patrols were upped and the pressure was on once more. Their last raid had cost them two of their own and many were licking their wounds, so Kaegan took it upon himself to take a patrol shift on the outskirts. Often there would be no trouble and the only thing that came across them were deer or other wildlife. Still, the bandit's hand rested on the pommel of his sword and he kept a sharp eye on the area around him.

    Unfortunately it would seem that trouble would come looking for him today. He heard the shouting before the footsteps. It seemed that he was surrounded and he wondered if his camp was finally found. A wave of panic hit him, it had only been a week how could things have gone so far downhill already? He turned to rush back towards his camp and was smacked into by a smaller individual. He drew his sword on instinct and looked down into the stunned brown eyes of a woman who was most certainly and elf. His eyes wandered from her ears down back to her eyes and freckled cheeks.

    He wouldn't have time to look her over any more as six men clad in armor surrounded the pair. In a moment the little elf was up with her back to him and what looked to be a magical shield by her side. So she was attractive and she knew how to proficiently wield magic? "How could I say no to a face like that?" He commented, leveling his sword towards the first guard. In a flash he dashed forward, parried the man's lade and slashed his blade against the exposed flesh of his neck. He pivoted and struck the next guard across his sword arm and kicked him into the next. By then he was forced to lock blades with another who had rushed him from the side. It would not last as he delivered a vicious kick to the man's kneecap and sent him buckling in pain as it bent at an unnatural angle.

    The last guard who had caught his injured friend was now moving for an angered attack and simply left himself open. Amature. Without hesitation, Kaegan stepped into the man's swing and thrust his blade through the man's armor and into his heart. The man's moment and dying weight shifted off to the side and the man collapsed to the ground with a heavy thud of metal on dirt. Before he could yank his sword out of the dying man, Kaegan felt a sharp pane open up along his back. He yelped out in pain and spun back, sword in hand to face the guard with the injured swordarm. In pure rage he smacked the pommel of his blade against the man's helmet and knocked him clean unconscious. He could feel streams of blood drip down his back as three men lay around him dead or unconscious. The fourth was still mewling in pain and holding his broken knee but otherwise was not a threat. Then the real world returned to him and he remembered that and elf had to him for aid, he turned to see what had become of her and winced in pain, hoping to ignore the pain the potentially take two more lives to protect his own, and by chance this elf.
     
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  4. "How could I say no to a face like that?"

    Rhea had already been standing back-to-back with the man, so he did not have the opportunity to see the look of shock form on her face. Okay, maybe he was a bandit. Maybe he had a sword. Maybe he looked pretty damn scary, although those tufts of blonde hair were actually quite.. quite.. no. It didn't matter what he might've looked like, never would she expect someone to so readily jump at the chance to defend what had to be a criminal. Rhea was not a criminal. She might have been proficient in magic, but she sure as hell couldn't fight. Without a moment to process, the stranger was already upon the first guard, slashing expertly and without hesitation nor mercy. With the intention to kill. Murder. Like the very thing she was being framed for.

    With a shaky breath, Rhea raised her shield and charged the nearest guard, slamming it down on the man with all her strength just before he managed to get his sword all the way out of it's sheath. Unfortunately, all her strength was not enough to completely knock him out, and the guard stumbled back, dazed. Rhea raised her fist into the air and flicked her wrist, gravel moving up and encasing the guard's legs up to the knee, so he fell over backwards with a satisfying thump. Rhea grinned at her handiwork, but it wasn't quite the appropriate time to admire her job-well done.

    The second guard charged her from behind, and only at the last moment did Rhea whip around only to be tackled to the ground, the tip of the guard's sword pointed at her throat. Rhea feared her heart would nearly beat out of her chest, but not until she gazed into the guard's eyes and so how afraid he was, too. Who would have thought.

    With another deep breath, Rhea apparated another shield, this time originating from her chest, pushing the guard off of her with an impressive force. The elf scrambled to her feet and now with a stomp of her foot, earth encased the fallen guard's hands and feet, shackling him to the ground. Bringing a hand to her neck, Rhea found that it was warm with a couple droplets of blood. His sword must have nicked her, but only in the slightest. That had been close. Too close for comfort.

    Rhea now turned to face the human and the wreckage he had caused. Her eyes widened at the sight of at least three of the men laying motionless. Dead or alive, they looked thoroughly broken, and she met the stranger's eyes with that same look of bewilderment. His face was twisted in pain, though he tried to play it off. This man was dangerous. He was lethal. She might be better off running right now, into the badlands, even. But he had surely saved her from either death or imprisonment, and Rhea knew, she was in debt to him.

    Glancing for the last time at the lifeless heap of men on the ground, Rhea inched towards the man, her hands pointed downwards like weapons ready to be unsheathed at any moment. "You're hurt." She muttered. Her voice sounded rather firm but her expression gave her away, fear danced in her eyes but she pushed it down quite expertly. A series of angry grunts came from the still conscious guard that Rhea had encased in the earth, until he shouted a defiant, "Release me this instant!" To which Rhea responded with a narrowing of the eyes, and yet another flick of the wrist, which resulted in another piece of earth slithering over the guard's mouth and solidifying, therefore gagging him.
     
    #4 CloudyBlueDay, Aug 11, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2016
    • Nice execution! Nice execution! x 1
  5. Kaegan was surprised by the efficient with which the elvish woman cast her spells. It was fluid, required no words and hardly any extravagant movements. He wished he could be so talented but he was only minimally learned in the ways of the arcane. The best he could do was light a fire and heal some basic wounds, but certainly not the cut across his back. But, like him, she was not invincible. A stream of blood ran down her neck, the result of the guards being either sloppy or too feint of heart to harm a woman. Unfortunately for them, Kaegan was not as forgiving.

    His grip on his sword tightened as she tried to approach, telling him the obvious. "I can see that, but I need to know why those men were chasing you." Beside him the man with the injured knee groaned and the bandit leader gave him a clean kick to the chin to shut him up. No sooner did one of the other guards mouth off and was quieted by a much more humane method. He raised his sword at the woman, ignoring the pain in his back, and spoke again to break the silence. "I've seen my fair share of dangerous women and and I know not to trust easily. It was advantageous to have you at my back in a six on two fight. But I did this for the safety of my people. If you wish to survive this encounter, then speak." They were bold words to a skilled caster. If he wasn't quicker than her, she'd have him suffocating in a suit of rock in the blink of an eye. But his blade had tasted blood and droplets of the crimson liquid fell from its edges still. One more life was nothing.

    His mind settled on the rest of the guards that still lived. None of them knew who he was, but they would know where they were attacked. And he knew that they would be back in numbers. This woman seemed to be rather against killing and he wondered if she would let him finish them off even if she talked her way out of death. He could keep one, maybe, for questioning, but even they would face their end eventually. A week sitting in one spot was long enough, no matter what is was time to move further west.
     
  6. Guess those bandits truly did stick by that "kill first, ask questions later" kind of motto. The tiniest of smiles crept up on Rhea's face as only now did the stranger ask why she had been chased by so many men. Rhea flinched when he kicked one of the guards in the chin, without a second thought, and then raised his blade straight towards her. To still look so menacing and firm when injured -- it had to take some skill, and certainly practice. Rhea stood frozen in place, making no movements nor saying nothing. She had two options here. To play scared, innocent, naive. He might take pity on her, he might not. Or, she could play the part of intimidation, right back at him. There was a good chance she could conjure a magical bolt to disarm him faster than he could charge her. But Rhea wasn't sure she was that confident in her abilities. It was interesting to hear him speak about how he wished only to protect his people -- who were his people? She wondered.

    "I was framed for a crime I did not commit." She said, as firmly as she could possibly speak. "Someone.. someone killed my beloved, and placed the blame on me." She said the word someone like she knew what someone. Because she did. She sounded choked up as she went on, but Rhea did not allow it to stop her. "I do believe I would be of more use to you alive then dead." She stated. "For starters, that wound of yours.. almost fully healed in a matter of minutes. And I doubt any of your people have such healing capabilities."

    "Now if you'll put your weapon down, we can talk." Rhea said, and took a brave step closer to the human. "How long do you think you'll last bleeding freely like that?" It was more of a question than a threat, but it could come out as either one.
     
  7. It seemed that Kaegan's gamble had paid off, or at least it would for now. He was skeptical as the elf told her story. If she was acting, then she was good at it. But sob stories were always meant to sell, especially coming from attractive females. A lover being killed and then framed for it? Sure it could happen, but just how often? He needed more information, but he was quickly running out of time. She continued on about her abilities as a healer and how she could take care of the wound on his back. Yeah, right. So she could literally stab him in the back? But if she was that merciless, why let the two guards live? The grip on his blade faltered, and the last drop of blood hit the ground, what was left managed to stick to the blade no matter what he did. If he could just get back to his camp, they could patch him up just fine.

    His thoughts were interrupted as the caster took another step towards him. He attempted to keep the distance by matching in a step backwards, but the pain in his back made him pause. The cloth and leather armor covering his back stuck against his skin, damp with what was certainly his own blood.

    "How long do you think you'll last bleeding freely like that?"

    As much as he hated to admit it, she was likely right. If he didn't trust her, he'd likely bleed out before returning to camp. If he did, well the chances were still high that this would be his last day. And the clan was in desperate need of a skilled healer. "Fine." He spat before thrusting his sword into the ground. His eyes scanned the area around them and found a boulder large enough for him to sit on. With a nod he directed her attention to it. "I will believe you and your intentions if you heal my wound and I will allow you to join my clan for protection in exchange for your arcane services." He said on his way over. "But if you try anything you'll be meeting your beloved sooner than you think." With his threat in the open, he sat down against the rock, unarmed but ready to use his bare fists to defend himself if need be.

    But before he could even get to that point, he needed his clothing off, and the pain was finally starting to set in as the adrenaline wore away. He made a few halfhearted attempts at pulling off his shirt but even the subtle movements were too much for him. Instead he was resigned to asking for help. "You're going to take to remove my cloak and shirt yourself." He wasn't ready to verbally admit he couldn't do it. Instead he'd resort to ordering her around. "What's your name?"
     
    #7 SpaceCowboyEin, Aug 11, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2016
    • You Get a Cookie You Get a Cookie x 1
  8. He was skeptical, of course. Anyone in their right mind would be. But fate was on her side, he was injured and in need of some help, fast. If he was smart enough to be skeptical, he was smart enough to see that. She knew her offer was beginning to sway him, though. Rhea could see it in his eyes, and the way his grip faltered on his sword just the slightest. The man attempted to take a step backwards only to stop halfway. It hurt. It had too. The guards might not have been the best in the land but a sword was still sharp no matter who wielded it. Even the most cowardly of men could still do some level of damage if fate smiled upon them.

    But no matter who had done it, it was done and that was that. He needed a healer and here he was, just his lucky day. Spitting an angry confirmation, he thrust his sword into the ground and slunk over to a boulder where he sat himself down. Rhea exhaled the breath she did not realize she had been holding, but of course he had to add one more threat for the last word. Rhea took his words in, looking him over warily before finally moving towards him. Allow her to join his clan, hmn? Now that.. was an offer Rhea never quite thought she'd be considering. Protection was her highest priority right now. If his clan consisted of members just as advanced in the art of battle as he, well.. Rhea felt confident that she'd last quite some time. But joining a bandit clan was not something that disappeared so easily, and if she ever cleared her name, going back would surely not be the same.

    Staying silent, Rhea watched him struggle to try and take off his cloak, but to no avail. Rhea looked at him with pity in her eyes, probably more than he deserved, but she knew his pride had to be hurt, as well as a wound like that would probably sting like hell. Instead, he attempted to order her around to defend his ego, to which only Rhea chuckled lightly as she grabbed the collar of his cloak and pulled it off in the most professional way possible. Undressing a stranger was surely not professional in any case, but Rhea gave nothing away, other than a slight redness of the cheeks and the tips of her long, pointed ears. He was well muscled, that was for sure.

    "Rhea. And you?" She said pointedly, leaving out the last name, and once his shirt and cloak had been removed, she moved her hand to hover over his wound. "This will hurt." She muttered, and then pushed her hand onto his wound, a soft glow beginning to emit from her palm as the muscle and tissue began to repair itself bit by bit. It would be agony at first, but slowly the pain would melt into a pleasant tingling feeling, until practically nothing at all. Once it was done, Rhea moved away, breathing becoming heavier from healing such a deep wound. "It will leave a scar, but otherwise, it's healed." She said, biting her lip. "I'm sure people of your kind do enjoy showing off battle scars, though, so it shouldn't be too much of a bother."

    She dumped his clothing back into his lap and crossed her arms. "Now. I do believe I was promised some protection, hmn?" There was a hint of a smile on her face, because ultimately Rhea knew she had won this battle, both with the human bandit and the guards. She gave no thought to the fate of the men laying still on the floor beside them, and felt that leaving them there would be suitable punishment until others came across them. She had time until then.
     
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  9. Being undressed by the elf did not hurt any less than trying to do it himself. But at the least he was given the ability to relax his muscles and let her slide the clothing off of him. With her out of his sight, it was hard to stay comfortable, mostly because he knew how the healing process usually went. I wouldn't be pleasant but he would still be alive by the end of it all. Rhea....so that was the name of the elf woman he was forcing himself to trust here. Well maybe if he knew her name it would make haunting her in the afterlife easier if she did decide to kill him off right then and there. With a sigh, he figured it'd be best to relinquish his name as well. "Kaegan..." He grumbled, head turning to the side. "I know.."

    The next few moments were lost entirely to Kaegan. Where there was nothing, suddenly there was blinding pain. Instead of screaming out, he grit his teeth and let forth a low growl to express the pain. He couldn't stand to seem that weak, and it would do them no good to get discovered again by a second part roaming the woods. But, as usual the pain would eventually subside and Kaegan would be given a chance to regain his composure and his breath. Rhea seemed to be in a similar state, repairing the wound must have taken a toll on her outside of dealing with the guards from earlier. The pain was all gone, but a tender line was now drawn diagonally across his back, marking another mark onto the numerous ones that had made their way onto his skin.

    "Scars are a source of pride to some. A sign of weakness to others." Kaegan gathered his clothes into s bundle and tied them to his side. They were too bloody to wear again, so he would have to brave the cool spring air until he returned to the camp without a shirt. "But I honestly don't give a damn about scars, its how you currently fight that matters."

    "Now. I do believe I was promised some protection, hmn?"

    Kaegan wished he could wipe that smug grin from off of her face, but he knew he'd get his revenge on her soon enough. "Yes. You will have the protection of the Pravost Clan. That is, so long as you provide your healing services to our cause." He sauntered over to his sword and dug it from the ground. It was filty, mud and blood coated the blade. In the distance, he could hear the sounds of direwolves howling in the distance. It seemed the forces of nature would do the work that his blade normally would. With a satisfied scoff he wiped his blade off on his bloodied clothing and returned it to its scabbard. He knelt down and grabbed the guard with the broken knee by the collar and began to drag him along the ground much like a ragdoll. "Let's go." They were heading away from the wolves and into a more thickly wooded part of the forest. "I'm taking this one prisoner, the wolves will rid us of the rest. The first thing you will learn, Rhea, is that nothing else matters more than the safety and cohesion of the clan. And that may sometimes mean killing the likes of these guards, no matter how innocent they may be. If you have any questions or concerns, now is the time to let them be known."
     
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  10. He took the pain rather impressively. Rhea knew it was all a desperate attempt to feel and look powerful in a situation where he was powerless, but she was still impressed. Such a wound would have most sobbing in pain, but he only growled through his gritted teeth. His comment on scars was not one she expected, but she felt as if she should've. It was probably true, what he said. Still, she figured that scars were probably some fun joke to share about a campfire in his type of society.

    Rhea nodded in confirmation of her skills being given to his clan, the Pravost Clan. In a matter of days her life had been turned upside down. Here she was, joining a bandit clan. Though it mostly terrified her, there was some strange part of excitement, of exploring an entirely new place and manner of people. The Elven society had always been a bit too snobbish for her taste, but Rhea wouldn't have picked the bandits over them if given the choice. There was no choice this time around.

    Direwolves howled far off in the distance, Rhea's head snapping in the direction of their howls, brows furrowed. Rhea grimaced when Kaegan -- no longer "human" or "bandit" in her mind -- grabbed one of the guards and dragged the poor bloke across the ground like a toy. While yes, Rhea did not care for the man, she did not enjoy the sight of such torture. But if she was to stay with this new bandit clan, the elf knew she had best keep her mouth shut. He was leading her into a thicker area of the forest, and Rhea looked about cautiously as they walked, walking rather calmly and in an attempt not to exert to much effort. Rhea already felt drained.

    He was frank, and left no room for argument. This was his turf, his clan, his rules, and she did not want her protected status revoked. Rhea was not sure she was prepared to commit the very crime she was being framed for -- but perhaps he did not quite need to know that. Rhea only nodded once more in agreement.

    She had a lot of questions, yet at the same time, none. Rhea stayed silent long after he had offered to answer any of her questions or concerns, until finally she spoke. "What are you aiming to achieve? You and your clan? What is this cause?" She said slowly. "Just dominance, among the others? Peace within your own? Why are you in need of a healer?"
     
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  11. Kaegan continued on as the sun began its trek towards the silhouettes of the Kelmurry range far in the distance. His back had never felt better, and dragging the unconscious guard along behind him was hardly an effort, the man was thankfully smaller than he was. Its was enjoyable silence until Rhea stepped in to finally ask him a question or two. He took a moment to mull over his answer as he hauled the guard over a large root that had caught on a piece of his armor. "Dominance, over all." He responded between huffs and he pulled the man free. "Calgary is a fractured nation and requires strong leadership to fend off the growing threat from the Viir. My intentions are the conquer each squabbling faction and turn our nation into one more unified, stronger and prosperous than before. An the only way to do that is to procure The Gauntlet of Olinax. It's hidden somewhere in the badlands on the other side of the mountains. Without it I couldn't hope to unite the country in time."

    Kaegan continued on ahead and ignored the stirrings of the guard under his grip. "I need a healer, because they are rare enough among bandits already. It's considered weak at times to use magic to heal your battle wounds. But I'm no fool. This journey is dangerous, and I will need every advantage I can get. My men are already injured from a skirmish early and could use your attention. They may not like it now, but they will learn to adapt to my rules or die of an infection." In the distance the faint glow of orange could be seen dancing around the bodies of trees. Voices could be heard conversing and for once Kaegan seemed to relax. "It sounds crazy doesn't it? At the very least, it'll give you a path back home, and even to revenge."
     
    • Nice execution! Nice execution! x 1
  12. Dominance.. over all?

    It wasn't unlikely that a bandit clan leader would want to rule all, but the way Kaegan spoke about it, well.. it sounded like he planned to do good for the entirety of the nation, much better then the people currently in power were doing. The only thing that had Rhea wary of his plan, was the mention of the Gauntlet of Olinax. To rely on finding the gauntlet.. such a task was perilous, and everyone knew that. Even if you could find it, what horrors would lie waiting for you would surely end the adventurer's quest right then and there.

    Rhea kept her gaze trained on the guard as Kae dragged him across the bumpy earth, wincing every time he had to yank the man over a root or crevice. Why he needed a healer, well, that wasn't hard to understand. Rhea wasn't quite sure how many she would be able to heal right this minute, as she'd never healed more than one or two people at a time, but surely it could be done. The only thing that worried her was perhaps exerting too much energy, letting her guard down for too long.. but Kae and his clan needed her alive more than dead, so she would try to take that chance.

    They approached what Rhea had to assume was his clan's campsite, and having not spoken a word of her opinion on his plan nor uses for her, Rhea moved behind him quietly as they entered the camp. "I suppose so." Rhea mumbled. Revenge was not something she had thought about yet -- perhaps if it entailed clearing her name.. though she would not mind the sight of Damien suffering for his crimes, torture was beneath her. But having him stripped of his noble position.. that was what Rhea wanted to see. She knew nothing would humiliate him more than being outed for his crimes and treated like a peasant. But she was not there yet.. and did not imagine she would be there rather soon.

    The camp was fairly barren. A couple campfires spruced around the tents that were propped up. Racks with drying meat hung near the fires, and men sat around the campfires, a majority of them cradling bandaged limbs and the like. Rhea took a deep breath, making sure she was close enough to Kaegan for them to understand she wasn't an intruder on their campsite.
     
    #12 CloudyBlueDay, Aug 12, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2016
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  13. Kaegan let the silence fall between the two as they continued on towards the camp. The captured guard continued to stir, but none of his concerns would matter in the middle of a bandit camp. Rhea did not seem as convinced of his plan as he or his men were, but that usually seemed to be the case. Eventually he would show her, or at least he could convince her to stick around long enough to start believing in it as well. Before long, they would emerge from the trees and into the clearing of his camp. It was hardly a sophisticated set up, most everything was able to either be packed up to move or simply be left behind to be made again in the future. A number of regular humans crowded the campfires though a pair of orcs stood out along with three dwarves and a drow female. Tents and campfires were situated in a haphazard manner around one, particularly larger, tent in the center. "Welcome to your new home." He murmured as eyes began to turn on the newcomers to the camp.

    A pair of his men came rushing up to the two, hands on their weapons. Kaegan raised his free hand to stay his men and watched as the conversations dropped around camp. "It's fine. The elf woman is with me. She was assaulted by guards from the local nobleman!" At the end of his accusation, Kaegan heaved the guard ahead of him and watched as the pain from landing on his broken knee brought him back to pained consciousness. There were a number of boos and jeers coming from the varying members of the camp. "Thankfully she managed to run into yours truly, and together we fended them off and brought a prisoner back for... 'interrogation'." This time cheers rang from a number of bandits and Kaegan was forced to raise a hand to quite them. "In gratitude for having her life saved, this young woman has decided to repay our protection with her exceptional healing abilities, something I know a number of you are in dire need of." His statement drew words of agreement from the crowd.

    One of the bandits, sporting a rather nasty scar over his left eye along with an eyepatch looked over the writhing guard and commanded the other to take him towards the main tent. "This is is Moruk Heinsal, my second in command. You will get to know him well when not dealing with me should I be away for some time." The one-eyed man looked to Rhea and gave a muted smile along with a nod. "A pleasure...miss?"
     
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  14. Almost immediately after their entrance to the camp, two of Kaegan's men rushed up to them, hands on their weapons, causing Rhea to freeze up behind the man in hopes of him dismissing them before she was forced to heal herself on top of everything. Luckily, Kaegan explained it all rather quickly, which lead into an accusation of the "local nobleman." While Rhea did find herself rather relieved to be in the company of some who so outspokenly despised the nobles, she was not used to the abruptness, the loud boos and jeers which quickly turned to cheers when Kaegan so pridefully announced the defeat of the guards. All the while, Rhea forced herself to ignore the guard's pained noises as best as she possibly could.

    A rather scary looking man stepped forward, and Kaegan introduced him as his second in command. Rhea glanced at Kaegan nervously, wondering if she were supposed to heal this man's injuries. Surely he knew scars could not be healed and new eyes could not be given. No, no. Of course he knew. She was just being paranoid. Rhea donned a smile and nodded as well. "Rhea. Rhea Mistral." It wasn't unlikely that the public already knew of Rhea's and her lover's fate, but even before that, her father, Baldemar Mistral, was a rather well known name around her parts, for his skills as a blacksmith and magical proficiency. She wasn't sure if any of them would know her around here, but if she was going to be staying here, she figured it better to get it out now than later.

    "So, I suppose you'll want me to get to healing?" Rhea said quietly to Kaegan, standing by his side so only and perhaps Moruk could hear. She was being as compliant as possible, and she hoped he saw that. "I'll start with the ones with more serious injuries, and those with lesser wounds will be done tomorrow." She paused. "Perhaps you should set up a medic's tent or something of the sort, now that you've got one."
     
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  15. Kaegan nodded towards Rhea. "It would be a good start to help morale. We'll help get your tent set up." He responded in an equally low tone. Moruk and Kaegan met eyes and shared a nod before moving to put Rhea's plans to action. Moruk went ahead into the crowd to pick out anyone able enough to help start building a tent while Kaegan stood a bit ahead of Rhea to begin getting the rest in order. "Alright everyone, our newest member here's name is Rhea Mistral. Remember her name and respect her at all times because she's the only thing standing between you and a very painful death. If any one of you even thing about doing wrong by her, you'll be treated no better than our good guard friend I brought in tonight. Does everyone understand?" Kaegan's call got a weak response so he tried again, this time much more visibly annoyed. "Does everyone understand." Finally he was met with a unison of ayes from the group. "Good...not let's get the worst of us out here for her to treat."

    With that, the rest of the bandits started moving, cleaning out tables they had been using to eat at to be used as cots for the time being. This was certainly not their first rodeo. Kaegan turned back to Rhea and shrugged. "They're not usually this hard to rile up. But that's what happens when they get into their first real fight. The reality of their situations begin to dawn on them after their first real injury. You saw how marked up my back was. This lot might as well be a bunch of nuns as far as I'm concerned, but they're loyal and I will lead them. But to do that I'll need you to treat each and every one of their lives like that of someone you love." He turned and waved a hand at the tents and people around them. "All of this is your home too now. And our home is....mostly...immaculate. That being said, it's going to take some nurturing of something in its budding stages to help it grow up strong. And I think you could help me do that."

    Just off to their side, Moruk a few other men, including the orcs, were getting a rectangular tent set up around a collection of table that the rest has organized. "These men will listen to you. Tell them what it is you need to work with and they will listen. Give it a try."
     
  16. If today hadn't already been filled with surprises, she had to put this one highest on the list. The fact that Kaegan had established a position of respect for her so early on simply astonished Rhea. Why he decided to place such faith in her, Rhea could not say, but a foreign, powerful feeling crept up into her stomach as Rhea straightened her posture and broadened her shoulders as Kaegan spoke, commanding respect for her until they gave their confirmation of obedience. The painful death part made her a little bit nervous, but with Kaegan in charge she didn't expect anyone to cross her rather soon.

    After the inspirational pep talk, everyone moved to work, and they moved impressively efficient and quickly, moving this over there, making space over here. Kaegan, however, did not seem impressed. He made excuses for their lack of motivation, which Rhea could vaguely understand, especially after the notion of his scarred back. It was interesting, how he spoke of his men like he was nurturing a garden. She couldn't quite decide if Kaegan first the part of terrifying leader or loving caregiver better. Rhea nodded along to his words, making sure he knew she understood.

    Moruk and a group of men were setting up a tent, and Rhea watched them quietly until the one-eyed man spoke. She gazed about the men, before clearing her throat. "Once you finish putting up the tent, I'm going to need bandages. Loads. Not all wounds heal pretty or all the way, even with magic. Cloth and a bin of water. And.. alcohol. Especially for those with a low pain tolerance or especially bad wounds. When that's done, I'll need the ones with the worst injuries to be gathered and sent to me." She took a breath and crossed her arms. "Can I expect that to be done in a fashionable amount of time?"
     
    • Nice execution! Nice execution! x 1
  17. Kaegan stepped back and let Rhea do her work. It seemed that either he had talked some confidence into her, or she had always had it, but by the time she was done talking everyone was getting to work. The bandit had to admit that he was impressed with her handle of the situation. Such a short time again she was fighting for her life and here she was taking charge. His men followed the orders to the best of their abilities and soon it seemed that the medical tent was going to come together rather quickly. He could hardly stifle the chuckle that escaped his lips as she crossed her arms and goaded the men on. "Don't get too ahead of yourself now. You go on a power trip and a few of them might try to put you on your ass for it." He smirked, giving her a shove before starting towards the tent.

    The worst of the wounded were finally getting brought into the tent along with crates of looted medical supplies, mostly untouched because the majority of the clan didn't know how to use them. With any luck they'd be much more useful in Rhea's hands and before long she could have them in tip top shape to move on towards the mountains once more. There he was sure he could bring more fighters to his cause. He took a few moments to assess the state of the tent and nodded. It was small, enough to fit seven table/cots only, but more than enough to take care of the serious wounds. He motioned to Moruk to start bringing the injured in and the one-eyed man nodded solemnly and strutted out of the door yelling commands. "I'm going to go retrieve another shirt, it's starting to get a bit chilly out here." He admitted to Rhea with another chuckle. "I'll return to assist how I can, Moruk will help you keep them in line until then." With that he was out of the tent shortly before a young man covered in bandages and blood was carried into the tent moaning and weakly begging for his mother.
     
  18. At Kaegan's words of wisdom, Rhea glanced at him, unsure, the idea of being "overthrown" so quickly after stepping up to the plate confusing her. She let out an offended yelp as he shoved her, losing her footing and regaining it only after a stumble. Then she gave him a glare before he started towards the tent.

    They had a surprising amount of medical supplies, in fact, ultimately untouched. The medical tent was looking more and more like a suitable workspace, and Rhea braced herself for the expelling of energy she would need to do to care for all their wounded. She supposed this was going to be the norm now -- healing took energy, took strength. She had better get used to being tired. Rolling her eyes at Kaegan's shirt comment and keeping her gaze downwards, she left out a soft huff of a laugh and got to work.

    The first man they brought in looked to be in awful shape. His sorrowful moans made Rhea cringe, but she healed him well enough. Any smaller, lesser wounds, she cleaned and sewed, and kept his mutters of pain at bay with a steady supply of alcohol. She repeated this with every wounded person they brought in -- heal the biggest wounds, clean and sew the rest, repeat. Day turned to night as she continued on, and finally Rhea could not keep her eyes open any longer. She made her way out of the tent, weary and with dark rings under her eyes, and in her sleepy daze, she entered the next tent nearest, which happened to be that of Kaegan's.

    Without even noticing the fact that he was sitting in a chair off in the corner, Rhea dragged herself to his bed and dropped onto it like a rock, not once realizing Kaegan was in the tent.
     
    #18 CloudyBlueDay, Aug 20, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2016
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  19. Kaegan's trip to get a new shirt did not take long at all, and by the time he arrived back in the medical tent, Rhea was just finishing up with the first patient. She'd make good time in the end, he hoped. As long as the most serious of injuries could be taken care of before she ran out of energy, they could all sleep easy for the night. Kae was able to stick around for some time to help where he could. Rhea truly took exceptional command of the situation and had an impressive reserve of magical energy to boot. Before long it seemed like she wouldn't need much of her help and most of the seriously injured were being cared for by the more knowledgeable members of the clan. As the workload began to free up, Kaegan decided to steal away Moruk and work on strategies and to let Rhea try to finish off on her own. He could test her leadership and get an edge on those who would love to run his band down like dogs.

    The road west would be long and hard, and they could not afford to cross the path between the north and south portions of the Kelmury Range. The clan would be forced to hike the north face of the mountains and as such they needed a proper amount of preparation before heading out. There would likely be a another bandit trade caravan passing through the area, so they would do well to try and raid it before they reached the last town before heading into the mountains. It was a lot of math, a lot of thinking and way too many times looking through their inventories and resorting rations to last as long as they could without decreasing morale and fighting ability. Eventually it was starting to make his head hurt and he ordered Moruk out to check on the injured and then get some sleep.

    Once he was gone, Kaegan continued looking through ledgers and maps in the corner of his tent and hardly noticed the entrance flaps fluttered about as someone entered. Next came the sound of something on his bed, but it all hardly registered as she struggled to keep his eyes open. With a grunt he set the piles of paper onto the stand beside the chair and slowly lumbered off to his bed. He'd just nearly gotten out of his shirt by the time he was under his covers. It was only then that he noticed a female was occupying the space along with him. He was too tired to see who it was or ask them how they ended up in his bed, all he wanted was sleep and she was over his covers. With some effort he managed to get them up and over the both of them and finally settled into a comfortable sleeping position, grateful for the woman in his bed not being a space hog.
     
  20. She slept well, and felt warm. Through her dreams she felt as if she were sleeping in Jeremiah's arms. He had not been big and tall, but his body was warm against hers and his touch was so gentle. Everything about him was soft and held a childlike beauty, the way he'd fumbled over his words whenever she laughed because he loved her so dearly. He dreams, tonight, did not haunt her with the image of his mutilated body. The sound of Damien's laughter, because she knew he had to be laughing somewhere.

    And when she woke, she did not remember Jeremiah was dead. With a body laying next to her in bed, she could only imagine it was him. She lingered on the edge of the bed, raised her arms in a stretch, and then stood and looked behind her.

    Her eyes widened in horror -- because this was not Jeremiah, Jeremiah was dead. It was Kaegan.

    "Oh, my God!" Rhea shouted, her hand going to her mouth in a panic. She couldn't have -- they didn't -- she looked at herself, and realized she was fully clothed, down to the last button and buckled belt. A breath of relief escaped her, but not all was well quite yet.

    "Did you get into bed with me?" She shouted angrily, never mind if he was awake yet or not, she was going to shout until he was. "You -- you --" Rhea glanced around, realizing this tent was furnished, with things she knew weren't to be in her own, recently propped up, tent. Rhea let out a groan, her head now moving to her forehead as she realized her blunder. "I must have.. uhg.. but still. that gave you no right too -- uhg!" Rhea shouted again, clearly frustrated with the situation.
     
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