To Slay a Dragon

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To Slay a Dragon

It was a new day, dawn. Lirren had managed about a half night's sleep. Adapted as he had been for years to a diurnal mindset, the seemingly-endless hours of running and planning had thrown him off balance, halfway to the nocturnal cycle his kind usually adopted. The time he'd been awake he'd spent thinking, and he hadn't left the room he slept in yet, hadn't indicated he was awake. He wasn't sure whether anyone else was.

He looked around again. There was a broken bed, a chest of drawers with several holes and patches of rotten wood, and the desk without a chair he was pacing in front of. This building had once been a tavern and an inn for travelers, in a time long forgotten when his kind had either not been around or didn't mind.

On the desk was a blank scroll of parchment, exactly what he was pacing about. Paper was one of the few things he'd thought to take along that first fearful night, paper and a few pens to draw out plans. He'd used a few pieces to make rough maps and estimate destinations for the journey here--populous cities and a few smaller towns. With all the speeches he had made, all those who had yet joined him still fit in this ancient tavern. At least that meant he knew who they were, why they were here..for the most part at least, the newcomer from last night hadn't had an opportunity to share his story yet.

He'd had to take the risk of letting everyone know where he was going so they could follow him. It was only a general direction, to the east, toward the great forest, but it was still dangerous. The dragon had probably sent soldiers to search the forests, and Lirren doubted the werewolves who had agreed not to kill his group would hide their presence, shaky as the agreement was. They were going to have to move again, and soon.

Or at least, something had to be done, and that was the trouble. Lirren hadn't had any ideas..any sensible steps to take next. He knew what rebellions did from literature and history, but just now they were in between the phases of starting to form, and gaining enough of a following to take bold action. They needed to gain more support somehow, do something. But at the moment the werewolf's mind was as blank as the parchment. He kept pacing.

((OOC here))
Upon the broken bed was the form of a female. She had her limbs all tucked in against her front side, a feline ear flicking back and forth as she dreamed. It had been a while since she was at least on a real bed... Sleep was mostly in trees or rooftops she felt safe on. Lirren was like a savior to Vivi, for allowing her to join his exhibition and granting the honour to sleep on these warm blankets. That's really all it took to please her.

When sunshine spilled through the cracks of the tavern and birds chirped outside, she stretched her body, letting out a long yawn. Her clothes were far from modest, but it was the uniform for women in her guild. It allowed her to move more freely and 'persuade' people if need be.

As she sat up, she could hear footsteps; someone was pacing. Vivi had no doubt that it was the werewolf. He seemed confident in his plan, but at the same time, he didn't seem to know what he was doing. The speech he gave might have been done on impulse, but she admired it either way.

After leaping off of the bed and landing on her hands and knees, she stood herself up, her tail making a content sway as she approached her new...leader. "Good morning," she said softly, keeping a fair distance between the two of them. She looked from him, to the blank piece of paper that she assumed he meant to write on. She smirked before looking back to him. She didn't know what to say, since she did meet him quite recently.
Nimba sat at one of the tables in the bar area of the tavern. He had slept very little the previous night and spent the majority of the very early morning sculpting his recent trinket. The small necklace was in the final phases of taking shape as his claw worked the metal with magic to take the shape of a gryphon standing an its hand legs making a stand against an unseen foe. The simple gold chain that connected the intricately woven brass gryphon were a masquerade for the powerful enchantments inlaid into the necklace. It was a counter magic enchantment that would absorb a hostile spell directed at the wear. With will the wearer could release the spell on command or absorb the magical energies back into his own being. Nimba slipped the necklace on, being careful not to remove his hood, as he slipped further back into his chair. His tail wrapped around to his side uncomfortable and not for the first time he wondered just what he was really doing here. His quests for greater magic prowess had brought him far and wide but to follow this party that didn't seem to yet have a full plan seemed foolish.

He listened as the other occupants of the tavern begun to move around at dawns break. The werewolf had been pacing for a while, his paws making a very noticeable thump with each foot fall, no doubt wondering the same thing Nimba was. Nimba grabbed one of the birds eggs he had collected while it was still dark outside and popped it into his mouth whole, enjoying the satisfying crunch of the shell as he ate it raw. This tavern could be easily defended if an attack were to come and he took some solace in that thought. Though no plan had yet been shared of how they were to topple this dragon at least there current location they could protect themselves.

Grabbing his staff he stood up and walked back outside to the morning sun. Though his walking was not hampered at all he still put much of his weight onto his staff as moved. Stepping into the morning light he slipped around the side of the tavern he stripped his robes down to the waist and sat to bask in the heat of the rising of the sun. He crossed his legs over each other and laid his staff upon his lap and let his mind wander through the varying techniques of spell casting. Eventually a plan would be announced, but until than, no need to let this precious sun light go to waste.​
Enter The Warrior

"Hither came Kroylrev Zsmertni, the Warlord of Mars, dark-haired, sullen-faced, sword in hand, a voyager, a vagabond, a barbarian, with an iron will and morbid determination, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his armour-plated feet."

(OOC: Dohohohoho, bet you didn't see what I did there)

They did not turn their heads to his presence, nor were eyes shifted from the glasses of intoxicants to his form. Yet there was an immensity to his character that all felt. He was not the most towering of men nor did he appear the most fearsome, yet there was something to his very presence that even the blind, deaf, and mute could feel. Clad in leather, spikes, torn denim, and steel, he seemed something else; more civilized than the common savage, yet too atavist to be a proffessional warrior. The symbols that adorned his vest seemed to speak of warfare, of mysticism, the esoeteric, the glorious, and the horrific. His face was sullen, harsh, noticeably aged. Like some tall spirit, he strode across the room, his gait commanding and ruthless. Yet there is a strange grace to it, one born of a man who is both destroyer of kingdoms and seeker of truths. Upon his back, there was a device of some sort, wicked yet majestic. It seemed to have a long neck connected to a sharpened axe-like body, upon which a variety of strings, switches, gauges and such were built into. It was coloured dark black with a sort of snow white colour fleshing out its core. Another weapon could be seen, a great sword, cruel with its sharp, serrated teeth and unnatural; those near him felt something present with him, within the sword. Peraps it peered into their souls, or their souls peered into the blade and the mysteries it contained.

He had travelled far and wide, coming here on a self-imposed voyage, to seek extreme forms of experience; to kill, to defend, to slay, to raise up kings, to bring down tyrants, to discover the ancient secrets of the world, to create new legends, but ultimately, to burn with life. He heard the tales and the rumours whispered on cobbled streets and stone halls, felt the anger of the common man and the high lord against this reptillian tyrant, and knew that all that he would find would be another adventure to transform into an epic saga. His interest perked, he soon encountered the beast-man behind it all, offering his services free of charge.

The bar itself was empty, save for the occasional rat or fly making their way in the morning hours. He could almost imagine the people that would have inhabited it in their better days, the tales to have been told over a deluge of alcohol, and a jovial atmosphere. All that was left though was imagination, just shreds of it, romanticizations of what could have been. It was painful in a way, tragic, and a part of him wondered what was the cause of this. Far-fetched as it seemed, he knew he could connect the lines in such a way to link it back to the dragon who had come and who had corrupted, twisted, abused, and controlled the land as if it was his slave.

He'd had many things on his mind, things he had extracted from a short voyage into a nearby village. Some of it was the rumours of old men, decrepit and wizened, and others from the ragged souls of wandering men with no more homes, searching for a future that may never be across these damned lands. He knew it was all to be taken with more than just a few pinches of salt, but every exaggerated tale woudl start with a truth of sorts, truths that he seeked.

Moving up into the sleeping quarters, he stopped by the door of Lirren, rapping it sharply with his knucles.

"Get your hairy arse up and about, Lirren, I've got some information our little group of usurpers may find handy."
Horic put the last book back on the shelf and stood back to admire his work. The massive book shelf was organized according to Rakanel's specifications at last. For the last decade Horic had been taking books from the shelf, studying them, and putting them back at random. And the dragon Rakanel, his teacher, had decided that it was high time to return the shelf to order. Rakanel lived in an old and forgotten fortress in the Mountains of Dren. The building was old, really old. So old not even its current occupant knew who had built it. When Horic had asked, Rakanel had told him that when he found it and moved in the fortress had been abandoned for a good three thousand years.

Descending the stairs from the tower study in search of his master Horic entered the entry hall to find Rakanel talking to a visitor. Horic frowned, the Visitor was Tarimel another Dragon and this was his third visit in the last few months. His visits always ended with Rakanel in a bad mood though Rakanel never said why. Rakanel turned as he entered,

"Ah, I take it your done?" Rakanel asked. Horic nodded, "Good, good. Tarimel and I need to have a talk, we'll be in the study, why don't you being us some tea?"

"Of course master." Bowing slightly to both dragons in respect Horic crossed the hall and entered the kitchen to fetch some tea. On his way back up the tower stairs Horic noticed Tarimel flying away to the north. He must have taken off from the balcony. Knocking Horic entered the study. The tray with the tea crashed to the floor as he saw what lay inside. Rakanel lay dead with a massive wound in his side, the pool of blood spreading across the floor. Horic rushed over to see if there was anything he could do but…

NO! No he would not relive the memory again. Sun light brushed his eyelids and he awoke to a beautiful sunrise over the trees of the Great Forest.

Horic lay on the roof of the decaying tavern. The stone tiles under his body creaked as he sat up. He had arrived yesterday evening and had come up here to watch the sun set and apparently had fallen asleep. Not a surprise, he had traveled late into the night and rose early in the morning many times over the last few months travel to reach this place. Moving over a bit so he could lean back on the old chimney Horic sat to let his body warm in the morning light, today was going to be an interesting first day.
Jya groaned as she faded out of her sleep, the pine needles crunching underneath her as she shifted onto her knees. She sat in a lean-to she had assembled at the edge of the forest the previous night, having just arrived there when she was beginning to wear out from flying and unwilling to walk too far in at night. She pushed aside a few of the branches, blinking at the sudden change of light, and grabbed her belt which lay beside her and strapped it on as she staggered outside. She stood up on her toes and stretched, spreading her huge wings out to their full span, and cracked her neck to one side, then the other, before reaching back inside the lean-to for her lute, which was tucked safely in a leather carrying case. She slung it over her shoulder and set off for the edge of the woods to get a clear runway.

Once Jya had made it past the treeline, she was awake enough to be confident in her coordination, but she wasn't quite ready to fly. She opened the satchel and poked around in her possessions, which consisted of a pocket-sized notebook, a charcoal pencil, a brass bell wrapped in a handkerchief, and an ivory wide-toothed comb. She pulled out the comb and began to quickly straighten out her wing feathers, which had become disheveled and entwined with pine needles during her sleep, making them unfit for flight. Once she was satisfied, she shook out her muscles and took off running, gradually flapping harder until her feet only brushed the ground. She gestured upward with both hands to bring a gust of air under her wings for altitude and soared upward, turned around, and continued to rise as she scanned the treetops for any sign of an abandoned inn.

She had been flying for half an hour when she spotted something between the trees. There was what appeared to be the roof of something, and she could see a person leaning against the chimney. She smirked. She was already liking the place. After circling around a few times to drop her altitude, she angled in for a landing on the roof. She ran a few feet from the momentum of the flight and straightened out her head feathers with one hand, grinning at the man on the roof. "Hey, can you tell me if I'm at the right place? I'm looking for a certain werewolf."
Lirren paused, seeing Vivi awake. There were noises on the roof, someone running across it and risking falling through an especially rotten patch of wood. He was about to answer her good morning back but was interrupted from his interruption by a hard knock and a voice.

It was the man that he'd had trouble pronouncing the name of at first..Kroylrev. It was just as hard to understand what he hoped to gain from all this. He wasn't even a citizen of Vineria: He'd come in after the tyrant's takeover and followed rumors to their small group. All he seemed to want from this was a sense of excitement and thrill; if there was one among them who to Lirren resembled a fairly pure hero, not at all motivated by revenge, nationalism or personal gain, it was him. Not that it mattered: Whether from revenge or greed or power-hunger, they needed all the help they could get.

"I'm already awake," answered Lirren, patting his hair down once or twice before opening the door to demonstrate. Like Vivi, he had slept in his clothes, and looked about as proper as he was going to. "As far along as the plans are at the moment," (here he made a brief gesture toward the blank scroll) "they could use some input. Would you mind bringing the others to the bar?"

"Aye, lupine-one. Best to keep your head down though." he said, his words playfully mocking.

The room was just as empty as he entered, the only audience being the spectres of his imagination, figures that perhaps may have been laughing, jostling, drinking and celebrating. Perhaps it could be again.

He was not stranger to such places. As a man who had been many things in life, one of them had been a musician of sorts, a wandering bard, creating sonic tales of devastation and existence, love and hate, victory and loss. It was a dualism to him, a "serenade of opposites" as told in the ancient philosophies of the Hellhammer tribe. He'd never bothered with the ancient texts, but he in a way decoded it on his own as time passed, discovering that his very life experiences congealed and created in response a sort of belief in his mind, similar to that of the serenade.

The life of the wandering bard had been an interesting one to him. The hardiest of warriors were genuinely surprised by the sound of his instrument; it seemed "electric" to them, capturing some sort of primal spirit of conquering, yet at the same time, there was a sense of transcendence to it, a sort of power that went beyond the immediately gripping and visceral. Some claimed that they were experiencing a sort of power from the realm beyond when in the presence of the aural assault, as if the very existence they were in was melting at the edges, and if there was an awareness of something beyond the physical.

Maybe this may have been a roaring crowd once, he thought to himself. His face was strangely calm as he sat, yet in pure contrast, his fingers were something far more chaotic. Like a thousand spiders duelling with one another, two hands seemed to become a blur. They stroked the strings, strumming up and down, picking at them like tiny ravaging creatures, sliding here and there as if they could find no true place of rest, and the effect was immediate.

The music of his people, in particular that from the so called "electric axe" by foreigners, was seen as vile by many. Abrupt, amorphous, destructive, every note was like the thunder-crack of an angry god. Whole chords became choirs of the unruly and the savage. Picked lines became eerie and elongated streams of melodies, seemingly not made to be heard by the ears of mortals, but by those from beyond. And it grew strange at times; sometimes he could summon the ancient spirits of the shrouded past, to take up their sonic weaponry, and join him in his rituals of metaphorical destruction.

He remembered the immediate effect on his kind. How men would seemingly turn into beasts. How skulls would thrash left and right, up and down, hood-like hair twisting in storms, like some bizarre transcendentalist mystics. Their dances were uncivilized, crude, and vile; to many, little more than barbaric unarmed combat, smashing into one another, shoving, and pushing.

Yet he didn't give a damn about the peering eyes of the outsider who wasn't even here. At most, there were only the birds and the rats, scampering away, like the scum-hounds of the holy churches when they heard his so-called "hell-noise" as they strode across the rougher parts of town, condemning the so-called sinner and spreading the word of feeble gods.

He had controlled the wrath of his composition well; it was loud, yet not loud enough to wake the dead (he had actually done so in his more reckless days). It was a wake up call, albeit one that was abrupt.

It was also a reminder of the days to come. They had it easy for now, but when it would be time to face the dragon, there would only be total death.
Xelmog walked in, standing near Kroylrev. Looking down at him he remarked in an annoyed manner, "You fool, I don't think the ones allowing us to stay here appreciate your noise, and we can't afford the attention to what is currently our main camp. So, in the future, be more like a civilized person." Xelmog then walked over and took his own seat in a corner.

Xelmog hated mornings, the needs of average people to sleep made his nights very long and extremely boring. He spent the majority of his nights practicing his swordplay. Other than that he didn't do much at night, if anything at all. He had spent the last night wondering if he had made the right choice in coming to the rebellion.

He hadn't been the first to join, rather he was the second. He had already become discontent with his life by the time Lirren had arrived in his city. So when he spoke about a revolution Xelmog joined hoping to find a meaning. He'd left his lieutenants with sections of the city, he trusted their rivalry would keep them from making his return impossible, but he wasn't sure he'd even want to return anymore.
Sarem was in his room, sitting on his bed drawing on a piece of pachment when the call came. To most it was just a loud noise but to Sarems ears sensitive ears the sound was excrutiating. Saremcovered his ears and fell off of his bed. whe it was done he lay there for a moment. His head was aching. He slowly got up and picked up his curved sword and belted it on and walked out of his room. when he saw Kroylrev he asked "was that really nescassary?

He smiled a hearty smile, bereft of the hidden derision. Stone-like and sullen, yet beneath the years of experience made manifest, there was the soul of a man who was used to the harshness of warfare, rebellion, and life on the road.

"Civilized people...civilized people...why, pray tell, should I be like the civilized man? The man whose ears are made of tin, whose soul has become bogged down by the grime of sedentary life, who aspires to only the lowliest and menial of life-roles, and whose hypocrisies are as immense, if not moreso, than his cities of gold and his towers of white stone?"

The artificact spun in his hands, surprisingly graceful for so seemingly wieldy a weapon.

"No, Xel, we are civilized men no more. We're scum, the filth hounds of hades, destestable in the sight of this nation's civlizations. Rebels have always been from such under-depths, the consequences of fools leading our hearts and minds. I despise not your civilized world, but only the mediocrities it produces in the soul. This rebellion, it's our chance to go beyond easy comfort and the at-hand-answer to problems."

The weapon now lay across his lap as he sat, hunched over a table, some old, aged drink in his hands.

"Enough though, of the ramblings of a pagan man. You two know as well as I we're at our most vulnerable. Same goes to the rest of the lot. We're going to have a bit of a talk, where to go, what to do...the general rudimentaries of starting a rebellion. I've been taking in information heard from a variety of sources. Soon we'll turn that information into a plan of attack."
Horic woke with a start at loud noise of the Myravi landing on the tiled roof, he had dosed off watching the sun rise.
"Hey, can you tell me if I'm at the right place? I'm looking for a certain werewolf."
Horic raised his eyebrow quizzically"I'm sure you already know the answer" he replied. just them a unfamiliar and rather excruciating noise came from below in the bar area of the ageing building. the sounds seemed to shake his very being and for a moment Horic was worried the decaying timbers in the roof would cave in. they didn't much to his relief.
"well, I think that means we are about to have a meeting." Horic stood and walked the the edge of the roof and with a small leap dropped off the edge. Horic ended the fall rolling at the bottom so not to hurt himself. Standing again he brushed off his plain brown wool coat. Horic entered the building through the front door and took a seat at the bar to await the information he suspected would soon be presented.
She was unfamiliar with every single one of these beings. At least, she was certain of that. Vivi was usually antisocial, finding it best that she makes no friends. She was a criminal, there was a price on her head... Now, though? These people were to become her friends; if nothing more than an ally. What they were going to do would take a lot of teamwork. Thankfully, she was experienced with this!

When the werewolf gestured to the parchment, she couldn't help but chortle. He struck her as a very wise, intelligent being... In fact, there were probably a lot of stories he could tell them. Honestly, she was hoping he'd share some of his knowledge with her.

Lirren said he wanted everyone to meet at the bar area of the tavern. While idly scratching behind one of her ears, she made her way towards it until she could put her back against the counter. Hopefully it wouldn't crumble, though she had no doubt she'd catch herself.

"Oh! My name's Vivi," she said blandly. She hoped to get some names in turn before jumping into plans. Her ears perked tall when she heard Horic drop from the roof. Vivi knew she heard someone--perhaps more than one someone--up there... Which seemed silly to her since the rooftop struck her as unreliable. Thank goodness no one got hurt so soon.
The blaring noise that came from within the tavern must've symbolized somebodies idea of a wake up call. His tail lifted him back to his feet, pulling his robes back up over his shoulders and his hood over his head he walked back around to the entrance of the tavern. The slight chattering from the roof top was strange but he chose to ignore it, knowing that whomever spoke from up there would shortly be inside with him. His tail wrapped around his leg as he used the head of his staff to push open the door and slink back to his table inside the tavern. The words 'civilized' being tossed around as he sat.

Civilized, another thing that most races of the land held against him. Though he spoke their language and could interact in their cities in their eyes he was a bestial savage. But in truth to himself deep within his heart his bestial nature still roared strong. In times of war he would don the war paint that he carried with him across his scales in pride. Comparing the 'civilized' contrasts of the city to his own nomadic tribe he found the cities to be filled with savages. They were merely savages who thought themselves better than all others. In the eyes of Kroylrev it would appear the entire group had dropped their civility by choosing to stand up for what they believed was right. An interesting notion.

As the woman, Vivi, spoke up to share her name he tapped his staff on the floor three times, "I am Nimba Aktoo." His voice was very rough and raspy. He laid his staff upon his table and waited for the others to either introduce themselves or share their ideas for their next step.​
Xelmog turned sharply at Kroylrev's comment "Do not make a jest of my name again simpleton." He then turned back to how he had been facing. "You should be aware that civility and rebellion are not correlated, similarly to nobility and thievery. It is possible to be a noble thief, but it is not necessary." Xelmog then straightened his coat. "As for the meeting, it might be prudent to wait for Lirren before we begin planning."
"There are no noblemen in trenches, aristocrat," he said off-handedly, fingers strumming lightly across the strings as if he was testing the quality of their sound "Just as there are no leaders who take an eternity to come to a simple group meeting."

Turning around, he shouted again "Lirren! Whole gang's assembled! I hope whatever you're planning up there is worth our time!"
Lirrin, who was already at the foot of the stairs by the time Kroylrev started shouting, winced. His ears were sensitive! He hadn't bothered taking the piece of paper down, trusting his memory to take down any decisions they should come to. "There's no need to yell, I'm already here," he said, walking into the small, circular group that had formed. He didn't go the center, preferring to lean against the counter and look around at everyone.

"I'm afraid I don't quite know what our next step should be," he said, calmly and cheerfully. "If we can gather enough support, find ways of growing a unified underground resistance of sorts, we could use it to get at Tarimel, sneak in and avoid his army. Enough actual warriors, and we could have an army, march it into the capital and make war. We could do both, use an army as a distraction to take down the dragon. They're all viable, but costly in different's not a decision to be made at once or lightly.

"Regardless of our future plans, however, what we need now is more people, and a way to get them. I've done what I know how to do, and frankly, it doesn't seem like quite enough." He stopped, looking for a response from another of the group.
United in Misery

"This isn't a fight we can take head-on, Lirrin. The dragon's not a fool."

Kroylrev had straightened up, putting his electro-axe unto the table. His voice, previously mockingly boastful and hearty, had now grown dead serious and sullen.

"I was out for a few hours, did a bit of talking with the natives in a town not too far off. Border village of sorts, primitive, down-to-the-earth, and practially a fringe hideout, but don't be thinking Tarimel's many eyes aren't watching."

At this, he pulled a rolled up scroll from one of his patched jacket's pockets. Unfurling it across the table revealed a map of this outer province they found themselves in, near the outskirts of the empire. One of his somewhat dark-coloured fingers smacked down into unto a larger outskirt-settlement, named Elisridge, before going past it and tracing through a dark sea of green.

"Our next location hopefully. I'm going to assume you're all well aware of the border conflicts; outlying heathen tribes of Ixaxaar, Adromeloch, and Masuzu and the emperor's outer guard units make for a deadly combination."

Even before Tarimel had violently ascended to the throne, the eastern outskirts provinces and the cruel wilderness that lay beyond the lands transformed for cultivational pruposes had always been a hotbed of territorial warfare. The wilderness dwelling barbarians frequently invaded and raided villages and more often than not, imperial retaliation inflicted similar harms unto these seemingly atavist outsiders. Yet this was no conflict of the innocent against the wicked. Many of these outer provinces were heathen lands once, and in many cases, both peasants and pagans lived side by side, sometimes seperated by little more than a few thin wooden fence-poles. Yet the desire of an empire to expand and the heathen spiritual connection to these lands were a poor combination. The conflicts eventually escalated to a point where none knew who really was to blame; both sides were simply trying to hold whatever territory there was left.

"Now, sounds like a horrid place to be, and no doubt, it is. I've spoken with a few, vagrants, deserters, mercenaries, the usual grimy lot. Border settlements are turning into border fortresses; men being put to the whip and the shovel. Trenches, lines of them, houses torn down or re-purposed into barracks. Agriculture being turned into war production. It's not pretty."

There was a short pause as his hand went to his belt, grabbing a long, thin shape. Sliding it onto the table, it became clear that it was no ordinary knife. Its gold-encrusted handle was curved, almost like the tail of a scorpion, and its dull gray blade was twisted and ceremonial in appearence. A long reptillian motif was etched across it.

"Secret police and hidden hand of the emperor. Took it off one of them; shady bastard, looked just like any other cutlery salesman." he said, a tone of slight frustration in his voice. He'd seen the man earlier selling low-grade material on an open market and then saw him a few hours later when he got off the ground, barely having dodged the ceremonial knife that shattered the inn room's window and nearily split his skull.

"Ended up snapping his neck and hiding the body, but they're bound to know one of their own is missing now. They've been holding up many routes back leading deeper into Vineria's heart; they're trying to conscript the entirety of the eastern provinces, stopping any possible deserters. As you can guess, the farmers, woodsmen, retired and whoever else is out in the fields aren't happy. Neither are the heathens. They smell wars, far worse than what they've had to deal with in the past, closing in."

As he finished that sentence, he stopped to look at Lirrin.

"You do know what this means, don't you, Lirrin? I smell a bit of a recruitment opportunity; the disgruntled and the downtrodden are an perfect canidates for a rebellion. Even the pagans will do wonderfully; they're on the same boat anyways. Misery unites us all, they say."
Sarem shook his head. "Even with a horde like you suggest, we have little hope of attaining victory. They have little training, next to no arms armor or even money. We need soldiers. men and women trained in thearts of war, people that can stand toe to toe with tarimel's indoctrinated fools. The only hope we would have with an army like the one you propose would be to overwhelm our enemies, which i might add is not a very viable tactic." Sarem paused for a moment letting his words sink into those that had gathered. "don't get me wrong, we could use barbarians and peasants, but we cannot defeat the ravager and his soldiers fighting a guerilla war. We need a standing army. a ragtag army attacking a city would be like splashing water on a stone."
Lirrin looked at Sarem. "You can train an army, you can't train no army. If we need more people in order to accomplish anything it doesn't really matter where they come from, as long as they're loyal and willing."

He returned to looking at the entire group, though focusing on Kroylrev a bit. "That said...I'd rather not involve people who are enemies of Vineria to begin with. We'd run the risk of their turning on us at a crucial moment, or expecting to be given land or some form of rulership in exchange for their help. I guess it's foolish of me to protest, though..we're already taking some advantage of the werewolves' antagonism to the country. It's just a..personal opinion, Vineria ought to be willing and able to free itself. But..don't get me wrong, I'll do whatever's necessary, even if that's it. It's why I refuse to make that kind of decision entirely myself."