Announcements: Introducing INK, the Writer's Currency » RPG's New Design Team » Now Open: RPG Staff Applications » 10 Years of RPG: Share Your Story » Can't Send PMs? Need Your 10-Forum Posts NOW? » A (Friendly) Reminder to All Romance RPers. » The Newbie's Guide to RolePlayGateway: Read This First! »

0
followers
follow

Aliana Duirk

"If it's a game of wits that you are after then you have already lost."

257 views · last seen in Cre' Est
a character in “An Assassin's Pledge”, as played by KrazyTigger

Description

Name: Aliana (A-Lee-An-Ah) Duirk
Alias: Ali

Picture:
Image
Image

Description: Aliana has a willowy, skinny figure that makes her look somewhat delicate in stature. It doesn't help that she barely brushes 5'2" in height either. However, beneath all of that is the toned and muscled body of a working girl. She has a wave of brown hair and when brushed it looks shiny and smooth. However, it is not often washed and brushed to perfection and is usually either tied into a tight braid or frizzy and rough. She has soft grey/blue eyes that have a hard edge to them and cheeks that are flushed pink most of the time.

Age: 24
Sex: Female
Date of Birth: September 34, 575 TE
Birthplace: Veilbrand
Current Location/Residence: Veilbrand
Ethnicity: Irlean
Height: 5'2" (just)
Weight: 117 lb.
Frame/Build: Slender and willowy.
Hair Color: Dark brown
Hair Length: Halfway down back
Eye Color: Bluey/grey, flecked with darker greys.
Complexion: Fairly tanned.
Voice Type: Mezzo-Soprano

Quirks: Aliana has a nervous tendency to play with her hair when she is worried or lying about something. If she fiddles with her hair then it is guaranteed that she isn't being wholly truthful.

She also has a birthmark on her left thigh, just above her knee. It's nothing more than a pink smudge about the size of an outstretched hand, but she is embarrassed by it.
Political Affiliation: No Political Affiliation.
Social Class: Middle class (farmer's daughter)
Occupation: Works on her father's farm.
Religious Beliefs: Goddecca
Family: Darius [Father and owner of farm], Judith [Mother], Karia [Baby sister] and Holden [Older brother].

Personality: Aliana is a naturally outgoing person and shows no fear or shyness around any kind of person, whether of noble birth or foul-mouthed, treacherous peasants. She is often sarcastic and has a very sharp tongue that she forgets to keep in check, which often gets her into trouble. Although, she likes to consider this a "witty" aspect to her personality and most of the time she can be quite funny with her remarks. Ali isn't afraid to speak what is on her mind and is very truthful about practically everything. She is not someone who deliberately goes out to hurt anyone's feelings, but it's just the way she is. If she does harm anyone's feelings then usually she is very regretful (even if she doesn't always show it). As sarcastic as she might be, she is not spiteful in any way.

Most of the time Ali is a calm and collected person and seems to have a blase attitude about most things that pass her by. However, she has a bit of a temperamental streak and if rubbed up the wrong way can be quick to snap. It does not happen often, but you had better not be close when it does.

It takes awhile for Ali to like anyone and she has a tough outer shell that she uses to repel people. That said, she can be very warm and open to those who she trusts and is fiercely loyal to those she cares about (especially her family). She has a wicked sense of humor and always manages to fight some kind of trouble around almost every corner. Playing pranks on her brother is her favourite past-time and she is quite mischievous.

Strengths: Doesn't let anything hurt her, intelligent, excellent horse rider, humorous.
Weaknesses: Temper, sarcasm, trouble maker (finder) and can't cook for anything.
Hobbies: Horse riding, singing and climbing.
Phobia/Fears: Enclosed spaces and death.

Equipment: A long dagger and a bow and arrow that she mostly uses for hunting, so it's a little crudely made.

Biography: Ali is the middle child in her family, though for a long time there was just herself and her elder brother. Ali's brother is three years her elder and has sole right to the farm upon which the family live. It is on the edge of the town, walking distance from the centre. Her family are well respected in the agricultural society and have excellent standing. The farm has been in the family for as long as anyone can remember and has been passed from father to son. Ali has no right to even try and claim the farm, though she would love to. Instead, it seems she is destined to be married off to the son of a similar family and become a farmer's wife, destined to bear children and cook. This is not what she wants.

All through her childhood Ali tried to keep pace with her brother. She worked the farm with him, she learnt to ride bareback on the farm horses, she practiced climbing trees. All of this was to make sure that she kept up with him in terms of looking after the farm and physically. The pair had a knack for fighting and she needed to keep on her toes if she wanted to beat him in more ways than one. Still young, she did not realise (and nor did her parents have the heart to tell her) that she would never inherit the farm. As they grew and matured it became obvious that Holden did not have as much love for the farm as Ali did, but he too begrudgingly accepted his Fate and that he would be passed the farm by his father. The fuss kicked up by Ali was phenomenal. She didn't speak to her parents for weeks and would often disappear into the woods that backed her farm.

Then Karia came along. It was so unexpected. Ali was fifteen and her mother had shown no signs of bearing another child (much to her husband's disappointment). Unbeknownst to the family, the child is not the fruits of their father's loins. But that is a secret that Judith will bear to her grave. Ali loves her little sister more than anything and it became the making of her. She calmed down somewhat and relaxed her bitter attitude about the farm. She refused marriage however and has turned down every man presented to her by her father. Although, rightfully she has no say, she is the apple of her father's eye and he would never push anyone upon her.

Ali still lives on her parents farm, helping out and taking care of her sibling whilst their mother works. Their father has long since retired and given Holden the farm. She does not mind her current position, as behind their father's back Holden gives Ali control of the farm whilst he sneaks into the village to visit his love. Plus, she has the freedom to escape whenever she wants to and often she visits the town.

So begins...

Aliana Duirk's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

It was a beautiful day. The relentless sun was beaming from amid the azure sky. There wasn’t a single cloud in sight to block its wondrous warmth. The ground was alive with all manner of creatures, most who were bustling around in the sunshine, collecting food or building their homes. Some had simply found a shady spot and were lazily watched the world go by through hooded, sleepy eyes. Unseen, the birds whistled a merry tune, flitting here and there. A gentle breeze was blowing through the trees, causing them to sway and their leaves to whisper secrets unbeknown to anyone. The wind grasped at the raven tendrils of a young woman’s hair, blowing them carelessly across her tanned face.

Aliana Duirk impatiently brushed strands of her dark hair out of her grey eyes as she straightened up. Rubbing her hand across her forehead, which was dotted with sweat, she smeared a line of dirt, just above her left eyebrow. It truly was a beautiful day and Ali had spent most of it out in the sunshine, ploughing the fields for planting. The back of her neck was slightly red and she could feel the sting of sunburn setting in there. Reaching for the flask of water that she had brought with her, she poured it across her slender neck. The relief was instant, as it worked wonders to cool the pain. Releasing a sigh, she corked the flask and set it down, turning to survey her work. She had to squint against the sunlight. They had achieved a lot today and she was pleased. The once flat fields were now pot marked with rows of dirt, piled up in neat mounds and they stretched for miles. A tiny smiled played at Ali’s lips as she raised a hand to shield her face from the sun. Another day’s work complete. Undoubtedly she had earned a rest from all the hard work of the day. And not only her either…

Ali’s eyes fell upon the rear end of a handsome dun mare. The horse was tossing her dark mane and poring at the ground with her hoof impatiently, causing the plough to shudder and quake. She wanted to get moving again. The young woman couldn’t help but suppress a smile at the young mare’s eagerness to complete a task. But she could see that her body was covered in a sheen of slick sweat, especially where the harness had rubbed, where the skin was white. Plus the constant panting was enough to tell her that they needed a rest. Edging around the plough, she stood in front of the horse.

“We’ve done enough today, girl. You’ve done brilliantly.” Ali whispered in a soothing manner, rubbing the mare’s long, velvety nose with her fingertips. The horse snorted, tossing her head in clear disagreement. A clump of hair whipped Ali in the face, causing her to chuckle lightly. Disengaging the plough, she left it where it stood and grabbed the worn leather reins in her hand. They were hot in her hand and warmed her palm considerably. With a gentle tug, she began traversing the uneven, ploughed field with the mare following behind. Leading her into the wooden stables, she laid eyes on the farm’s other two horses, who were watching with curious eyes from behind their stall doors.

“Later, Maverick,” Ali said in an amused voice as the closest grey horse tried to nibble her sleeve as she passed. He snorted in a dignified manner and turned his large backside on her. With a roll of her eyes, Ali loosely tied the mare’s reins to a post. With expert fingers and precision, she began to whip off the reins and harness from the mare’s back, which stood patiently and very still. After hanging them on their pegs outside of her stall, she began a thorough wash down of the horse with a brush and cool water and then rubbed at her hair with a handful of hay to dry her. Patting her strongly on the rump, she untied the reins and led her into her stall, locking the door behind her. As she had discovered a year previously, this mare had a knack for escaping her stall and trotting prettily into town to attract attention. She, however, had not been impressed when she had had to collect her after a rampage through someone’s garden, effectively trampling their finest cabbages. Ali was still apologising to them now whenever they met.

After mixing three buckets of pellets for the horses, replacing their hay and mucking out there stables, Ali fed the chickens, threw some more toys in for the goats, milked the dairy cow in their shed and tended the vegetable garden. Finally, she finished up and headed towards the house, which sat slightly above the fields on a hill. Hauling the bucket of dairy up the hill, she followed the gravel path up to the door. Taking a deep breath, she opened it and stepped into the dim light of the house. A beautiful smell of meaty pie and sweet honey filled her nostrils. Obviously her mother had returned from the market and was cooking with her newfound ingredients. Smiling, she placed the pale on the table top and pulled out a chair to sit down.

“Do not even think about it young lady!” Her mother’s shrill voice reverberated around the room and Ali grinned, turning to face her mother.

“Ali!” Exclaimed Karia, running towards her sister and was promptly swept up and held in the air. Despite Karia being seven years of age, Ali had no problem lifting the tiny little girl. She squealed happily, kicking her feet and smiling brightly. Ali set her down, bottom first, on top of the table.

“Sorry mother. I brought you some milk up from the farm.” She nodded her head towards the milk, which had gathered a thick creamy layer on its top.

“You work too hard,” Her mother sighed, collecting the milk and talking it to the pantry. “Your brother should be-“

“Her brother should be what?” Ali’s father’s voice interrupted, as he hobbled forwards towards the table. Ali shot her mother a warning look as she recovered first from the sudden appearance of her father. He had a knack for appearing silently so that no-one ever heard him coming. She should have known that he would be lurking somewhere.

“He should be home from the market soon. He had urgent essentials to buy father. I just covered the farm for today. But he’ll be home soon.” Giving him a brusque kiss on the kick, she headed for the stairs to wash down for dinner.

“There’s a bath awaiting you madam! But mind you’re not late for dinner! It’ll be ready soon.” She raised her hand in acknowledgment of her mother’s words as she climbed the stairs into the loft area. True enough, a steaming tin tub was waiting for her. From the smell her mother had laced it with wonderful oil which had turned the water slightly purple. Stripping herself of her tunic and breeches, she eased her hair out of its plait and slipped her naked, slender body into the hot water. The relief was instant and she sighed a deep breath, closing her eyes. It was lovely to lie in a warm bath, the air smelling of home-cooked food and her family just feet below her. As she further relaxed, she felt a sudden tiredness sweep over her body. Before she knew what had happened she had dozed off, head lolling on her shoulder.

It was the house shaking furiously that awoke her. It could not have been longer than a few minutes since she had fallen asleep, as the sun was now setting on the horizon. Opening her eyes in sudden panic, her hands gripped the edge of the bath as the shaking subsided. But only seconds later it erupted again, even worse than the time before. Ali’s knuckles shone white against the skin as she grasped tightly onto the tin. Below her Karia shrieked loud and clear. She didn’t need anything else to propel her out of the bath. Grabbing her clothes, she tugged them on, still sopping wet. Darting across the wooden floor, she took the stairs two at a time, eyes roving for her family. They were gathered by the scrubbed wooden table, Karia in her mother’s arms.

“That was not an earthquake. It came from just outside of town.” Holden had returned and was frantically pulling on his supple, leather boots. He looked worried and Ali knew why. His love was in the middle of town and undoubtedly he wanted to find out if she was safe. Like Holden, her father was also pulling on his boots, but a lot more slowly than his younger counterpart.

“But what use will it do-“ Judith response was cut off as another rumbled rolled over the house and the ground quaked beneath their feet. “-to go up there Holden. You will be putting yourself in danger.”

“We can help Judith.” Came Darius short reply, as Karia whimpered in her mother’s arms. Both men strode purposefully towards the door. Ali launched herself into the room, staring determinedly at their backs.

“I am coming too.” She said in a strong and fierce manner. “I might be able to help.”

“No child, you are staying. That is final.” And with that, they were gone. Ali cast a look at her mother, who was staring at her with narrowed eyes. If Judith was sure of anything then it was that her daughter would attempt to follow her husband and son. Setting Karia down, she crossed her arms across her chest and stepped towards the door.

“Do not even think about it.”

“Too late.” Brushing past her mother, she snatched up her hunting bow and quiver which was nestled safely by the door. Wrenching open the door, she strode out into the dusk and towards the stable as quickly as she could. Ali would take the back road into town, so not to pass her father and brother who would send her back to the farm as quick as they could manage. Grabbing Maverick’s reins, she threw open the stall door, causing the young colt to nicker in fright. He already appeared to be startled by the moving earth. Without waiting for him to calm, she threw the reins over his head, buckled them and pushed the bit into his mouth. Leading him from the stall, she took him to one of the low posts. Hopping onto it, she swung her left leg over his back and pulled herself up. Digging in her heels, she urged him forwards. Maverick resisted for a moment, but after a few hefty kicks he trotted forwards.

Once Ali was satisfied that he had warmed his muscles, she pushed him into a full canter. Hair whipping behind her, she bent low over his neck, eyes determinedly forward. It didn’t take them long to reach the edge of town, though it felt like hours for Ali. As they drew closer, the ground was shaking with more ferocity. Poor Maverick was shaking when he drew to a halt, refusing to go any further. Sliding off her back, Ali slipped to the floor, turned the horse around and slapped his rump hard. She knew he would run straight back to the farm. She would run the last little bit into town.

Ali didn’t have long legs, but she was quick. It wasn’t long before she was weaving between the outer houses. It wouldn’t be long before the damage was evident. In fact, she could already see smoke furling from the centre. The devastation was obvious. Houses lay in heaped rubble, fires raged everywhere and people were screaming from every corner of the town. Smoke and ash swirled in the breeze, settling everywhere. Ali stood motionless, staring at the destruction. It was unbelievable, shocking. But what had caused it? She ventured a little further forwards, not quite sure how to react it.

And then a child screamed for help. Snapping out of her trance, she turned her head towards it. Blood matted the poor little girl’s hair and streaked down her face. With a jolt Ali was reminded of Karia and she rushed forwards to help, tearing a piece of her tunic off as she went. Wadding it up, she pressed it to the child’s head who whimpered and struggled in her grip.

“It’s okay. I’m a friend. Who did this?” She asked in a soft, gentle voice. Fearful blue eyes held her own for a second.

“It was t-t-them. T-the assassins.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Aliana had finished tending to the injured little girl. It had transpired that the blood was leaking from a gaping weep someway into her hair line. The young woman had done all she could before handing her over to her mother, who miraculously was a Healer. Ali only hoped that she could tend to the wound and ensure that it did not become infected. She had seen many injuries, such as that one, and the bearers usually did not last a week. If infection got in then the little girl was doomed. Ali shuddered, cursing the assassins with every fibre of her being. Of course, her words were merely thought, and never muttered out loud where they might be heard. The consequences of speaking against the assassins would be dire and Ali was not stupid enough to put her life, or her family’s lives, in any danger. Instead, she kept her mouth firmly shut and thought explicit things. Ali could not believe that they would strike the city as they had done. It was an unnecessary show of their ultimate power. But everyone, from child to the elders, knew their strength, their power and their domination. What had caused such an unjust attack?

Wandering around the city, she pondered this whilst looking for others in need of help. There were plenty, but she drew to a sudden halt near the city centre where many were working hard to extract the bodies from the wreckage. The pile of the dead was mounting beyond belief and it turned Ali’s stomach just to look at their blank, empty faces. Some eyes were staring at her, though she knew that they certainly were not seeing anything anymore. When a baby was brought from one of the houses, it’s tiny body limp and motionless; Ali turned away, her stomach twisting painfully. That was just sick. To destroy the life of an innocent child was a brutal crime in her eyes. But there was no-one to punish the assassins. They were the highest power. Bile rose in her throat and Ali’s fists clenched at her sides until the knuckles shone white against the skin and her blunt nails cut deeply into her palm. They would never pay for the crimes that they had committed. They would never feel retribution. They would never feel regret for what they had done. It was sick. It was twisted. It needed to change. But Ali knew it never would. The people would never turn against the assassins for fear of what would happen to them.

“Ali!” A voice tore Ali from her own thoughts and her head jerked up, her neck clicking painfully. “Father warned you to stay behind! He will be furious if he sees you here.” Holden stood before her, muscled arms crossed over his chest. There was ash covering his clothes and a large amount of blood on both skin and cloth. His floppy brown hair had fallen into his eyes. At his side was a young woman who could be described as nothing short of beautiful. She had a wave of auburn hair, which reached far below the bottom of her back and two wide, green eyes that shone with tears. Although her skin was pale, it was streaked with grime and tear tracks. Ali had never met Felicity before and thought she looked delicate. Not at all the material for a farmer’s wife. How could Holden had chosen such a pitiful form to take care of his farm. She had not the build, nor by the looks of it the stamina to uphold a farm if Holden was ever away. Clucking, she peered around her brother to get a better look, a forced smile on her lips.

“It’s nice to finally meet you Felicity. Holden speaks so highly of you. It’s nice to put a face to the name.” Ali said, as brightly as she could manage, ignoring her brother’s words. “I’m ever so sorry we had to meet in such circumstances. Are you family alright?” The false kindness nearly sickened Ali, but she thought she had better make an effort. After all, these two were to be married in the autumn.

“They are fine, thank you Aliana. It is a pleasure to meet you as well.” The voice was stronger than Ali had expected and knocked her off guard somewhat. With a genuine smile, she nodded her head and looked towards her brother. Before she could speak, Felicity had spoken up, those wide eyes focused solely on Holden. “Leave her be my love. She has her bow and arrows and I know she’s a wonderful shot because you have told me a millions times that you wish to shoot like her. She’ll be safe now.” Ali could not help her jaw going slack as she stared in wonder at this woman. Before she could recover, Felicity turned to her and smiled a watery smile. “Go, get out of here and help some people.”

Nodding silently, Ali turned on her tail before her brother could say another word. Though a glance at his face told her that he was resigned to the fact that two women had put him in his place. “Just don’t let father see you!” He called to her as she scurried away. As she rounded a few more corners, she released a sigh of relief.

Only for another explosion to erupt only metres from her. Ali didn’t even have time to scream. Her body was lifted into the air and slammed into the wall behind her. Thankfully, it concaved and she fell into a dusty room, amongst the rubble. Struggling to her feet, her hands roved over her body. There didn’t appear to be another lasting damage. Blood leaked from a cut just above her eyebrow, but her fingertips told her that it didn’t feel serious. A little way away a pair had also tumbled to the ground from the explosion. Extracting herself from the rubble and brushing down her clothes, she started towards them cautiously.

“Are you both okay?” She asked, stopping quite a distance away from the pair. Who knew who they were or what they were capable of? She would keep a space between. “Your shoulder looks quite bad. You might want to get it checked out.” She stated the obvious, in sarcastic voice, her eyebrows arched amusedly, despite the situation.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Kaska Dalcata


Kaska had barely caught her breath when another explosion buffeted her slim frame against the doorway she was sheltering in. She knew she would have a rainbow of bruises not to mention a series of cuts and grazes decorating her body. Debris went flying into the street, dust erupted from the newly destroyed building and a wave of heat sent the already agitated crowd rushing and pushing to get away from the destruction.

A moment after the more recent blast a young man crushed into Kaska, sending Kaska's arms pinwheeling as she tried to maintain her balance. As she grabbed the frame of the doorway, steadying herself, the man that had hit her collapsed to the ground. "Ah, you must forgive me. I'm in a bit of situation..." His words were laced with pain. His shoulder was bleeding heavily and he looked like he had been in close proximity to more than one explosion. He was, perhaps, a year older than herself with medium length brown hair. His clothes might once have been nicer but where now covered in blood and dust.

Kaska's knowledge of wounds was only basic, learned from her years sailing. Her first sailing instructor had told her that if she was going to sail solo then she would need to know how to treat basic wounds. Kaska bit her lip, an anxious habit she had developed some years ago. She knelt down beside the man, his injury was obviously more complicated than a basic wound and she knew she didn't have the skills to deal adequately with it. The best she could do was try and stop him from bleeding out.
"Can you sit?" She asked, placing a hand on his uninjured arm. She would have liked to get him sitting against the doorway. That way he would be further out of danger of being trampled by the crowd.

A voice caught Kaska's attention and she looked up from her position beside the man to see a woman watching them from a safe distance away. She was a least a few years older than Kaska and also a good deal shorter. Like the man and Kaska herself, her clothes had seen better days. Her tunic was torn, whether deliberate or not Kaska wasn't sure, and she had a small cut above her eyebrow that was bleeding.
“Are you both okay?” She asked, “Your shoulder looks quite bad. You might want to get it checked out.”
Kaska pushed back a wave of irritation as she heard the girl's sarcastic tone. Was this really the time for sarcasm? She even looked amused, an emotion Kaska found even more frustrating, particularly given the situation.

"Do you know how to treat wounds?" Kaska asked, pushing aside her annoyance and focusing on the man's shoulder instead. Impatience was one of Kaska's less than ideal traits and right now, with the stress of the night and the death of Hakens, she probably had even less patience than normal.
She bit her lip again as she tried to remember the lessons she had been taught. In all honesty she had done enough to pass her instructors tests and then promptly forgotten them, focusing more on sailing.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Ace turned his head towards the girl, he sighed in relief when he saw he hadn't trampled her. The girl seemed younger then he was, but above all else in great shape. She knelt beside him, "Can you sit?" she asked in a calm matter. "Its not that bad really." He lied of course, anyone could tell that this injury was close to severe, but not fatal. He smiled at her in spite of injury, he didn't need to worry anyone else. He already troubled her enough. Nevertheless Ace nodded his head and pushed himself towards a nearby wall in a sitting position. They weren't safe, not even close, an explosion could even erupt from right behind him. "You really don't need to - " He was caught off by a voice of another woman.

The first thing that has caught his eye was the fact that she stood a safe distance away from them, typical cautious behavior. She was battered herself, but neither of the women were in bad shape. The sound of explosions faded in the distance, maybe it was finally coming to stop? The city will have to face mayhem within its citizens now. “Are you both okay? Your shoulder looks quite bad. You might want to get it checked out.” He looked at his shoulder, then at the girl still crouched next to him, her face was rather irritated. "What this? Its just a scratch."

"Do you know how to treat wounds?" The girl beside him asked. The merchants district was not safe, especially not after what had transpired to his shoulder. "We can worry about me later, let's find a safe place for the time being." Being in a sitting position Ace didn't want to get up, his body felt heavy and perhaps even relaxed, but if any of these women get hurt because of him he would never forgive himself. Ace has never taken much responsibility upon his shoulders, but what better time to start then now? With his good hand he grabbed the door handle above him, pulling his seemingly heavy body up. He stood and grabbed the handle to not lose balance. "Well... Shall we?" Ace tried to pull off another smile, but this was harder then before, he felt his arm grow weaker and attempted to hide the pain. It was no time to show weakness, not when he had dragged two others down.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Aliana did not miss the look of irritation that crossed the woman’s face, even when she lowered it to peer at the wound, which was leaking a surprising amount of crimson blood. Suppressing a roll of her eyes, she watched with her arms folded tightly across her chest. Ali found it somewhat irksome when people took offence at her sarcastic tone. However, it was just how she was and she didn’t really care if people didn’t like it. Glancing at the destroyed city around her, she debated leaving them to it. After all, there were many in need of help. And now the explosions had some wracking the city she could move freely, offering her assistance. But when she turned back to the pair, opening her mouth to wish them well, she noticed that the woman had made no move to staunch the flow of blood. Frowning slightly, she turned her head on one side to get a closer look at what the younger woman was doing. It was evident that she was unsure of how to treat the wound. Although Ali had never seen anything quite as bad as his wound, she had dealt with numerous injuries at the farm. Her father was elderly now; he was forever harming himself on the machinery. As though reading her mind, she directed a question at Ali, who looked expectantly back at her.

"Do you know how to treat wounds?"

Before Ali could open her mouth, the man had interrupted their exchange.

"We can worry about me later, let's find a safe place for the time being."

Ali arched an eyebrow, her grey eyes flickering from the man’s face to the wound. Even though she wholly agreed that they needed to get off the street she highly doubted that he was going to make it very far. Especially considering the grey pallor of his face, which only got worse when he pulled himself to his feet using the door. Every part of Ali’s brain told her to leave them at it. After all, she didn’t owe these people anything. Hell, she didn’t even know who they were. But that wasn’t the kind of person she was. Instead, releasing a reluctant and exasperated sigh, she drew closer to the pair.

“I know a house near the edge of town. If we can get to it, without running into any trouble, then I can attempt to patch that up.” Ali muttered, nodding towards his shoulder. Rubbing at her nose, she brushed her hair out of her face. Silently and without waiting for the others to respond, she tore another strip of her tunic off. It bared a section of her tanned midriff. Carefully, she reached around the man, wrapping the material around his wound and tying it fairly tightly. “But there’s no way you’re walking unaided there.” Without any hesitation, she stepped up and purposefully took his uninjured arm, pulling it over her shoulder. ”I can’t believe I’m doing this… She thought to herself as she nodded towards the other woman, indicating that if she be gentle then she could take the other arm. Being gentle was not Ali’s forte, which is why she had avoided grabbing the injured arm. Once they were in the position, she began a slow walk forwards through the back streets. Hopefully someone would be home at the place where she was taking them. If not, then she would be left to deal with that gaping wound alone. And Ali didn’t like to think what might happen then.

It was slow going. Ali didn’t speak. There was still an element of distrust in her demeanour. It wasn’t until they drew close to the house that she said;

“We’re nearly there. Just hold on a little longer.”

It took a further five minutes, but eventually they drew close to a house that looked close to falling down. The walls were crumbling away and the roof had many tiles missing, but Ali knew on the inside it was warm and safe from danger. Without knocking, she pushed her way inside, through the heavy wooden door. As she feared, it was empty. The single woman who lived here had obviously gone to tend to her neighbours. She would not mind their intrusion as Ali often provided her eggs for half the market price. But Ali had hoped that she would be able to tend this man, without needing her help. Now, it looked as though she would be dealing with the wound. Gulping, she ducked out from under the man’s arm and tugged out a scrubbed wooden chair.

“Take a seat.” She instructed in a harder voice than she had intended. “My name is Aliana by the way. Could you find us some water?” She asked, in a fairly polite voice to the other woman, whose name she did not know. Glancing around the warm kitchen, she looked for rags to clean the wound. There was some material hanging in front of the fireplace. She reached for it and tore it into strips. She would replace anything they used or give the woman some money towards it. Without talking, Ali approached the man and began mop up the blood with the dry strips. It came off fairly easily, but they would need to clean it.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Kaska Dalcata


The young man was obviously in pain and yet he was trying to pretend otherwise,
"Its not that bad really." He said before pushing himself into a sitting position beside the wall. He seemed more concerned with getting out of the merchant district and to a safer place than his injury. Kaska, glancing around at the street, had to admit that where they were was hardly the safest place to be. The most recent explosion was a fine example that the danger was far from over.

As Kaska asked the woman watching them if she could treat wounds the injured man spoke, again more downplaying of his injury. "We can worry about me later, let's find a safe place for the time being." Slowly and with a great deal of effort he pulled himself to his feet, using the doorknob to steady himself. He tried to force a smile onto his face but Kaska could see that it didn't come easily.

The woman gave an exasperated sigh, her reluctance clear. Still she stepped forward and offered her help, which went a long way in easing Kaska's feelings towards the woman.
"I know a house near the edge of town. If we can get to it, without running into any trouble, then I can attempt to patch that up.” kaska was relieved to hear the woman's words. True, Kaska had only just met this man; he had literally just crashed into her but she didn't think she would be able live with herself if she left him to bleed out.
The woman tore a piece of her tunic off and wrapped it around the wound. Then she grabbed him by his uninjured shoulder to help support him as they walked. She nodded at Kaska, indicating for her to take the injured side. Kaska looked to the man for permission before gently placing his arm over her shoulder, taking care of the wound.

Neither girl was really tall enough to properly support the man's tall frame so it was slow going. The other woman didn't talk, instead she simply steered the group through the streets. Finally the reached their destination, a small, decrepit thing that looked like it was barely standing. The other woman took them straight in through to door, not pausing to knock. Kaska looked around curiously to find the interior empty of people.

“Take a seat.” the shorter woman instructed the man, pulling out a chair for him. Kaska helped him to the seat before pulling herself out from under his arm.
“My name is Aliana by the way. Could you find us some water?” The woman, Aliana introduced herself and politely asked Kaska for help. Kaska, glancing once again around the small house, thought that water or at least clean water might be a bigger problem to find than expected. Nevertheless she began a search of the house and the outside until she found what she was looking for. Lugging a jug of water back into the room she found Aliana mopping off the man's blood. Kaska placed the jug of water beside Aliana before turning to the fireplace. Embers were all that remained, indicating that someone lived here and hadn't been gone all that long.
Kaska knew they would need clean water to help prevent infection so she knelt beside the fireplace and began to rebuild it.
"My name is Kaska." She told the two as the fire burst into life.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Ace was relieved when both women came to help him walk. Ace wanted to protest, but he wasn't sure his body would let him on this one. Although he didn't want to believe it, Ace's arm was in bad shape and required immediate medical care. One of the woman ripped a part of her tunic and tied it tightly around his shoulder so that he wouldn't bleed out. The walk was, to say the least, dreadful. Ace could her his heart beat with every step they took, the two women at his side stayed quiet throughout the walk. They walked slowly, but not too slow, it was still dangerous. Whoever had done this is probably still lurking around. Ace had heard rumors earlier that Assassins were the cause of all this but what could they possibly gain?

After a short while they arrived at an old house, broken in many parts. Most likely been hit by flying bricks or an explosion from nearby, or perhaps the house is just old. Ace was surprised to see that the inside was intact, in-fact it was somewhat cozy. "I'm really sorry for dragging the both of you into this...". Neither women seemed to acknowledge him, "“Take a seat." the shorter woman instructed in a somewhat commanding voice, but Ace was in no position to argue. He was helped to his seat and leaned back. After Aliana introduced herself the other women went into the kitchen and came back with water, and she also introduced herself. Ace tried to speak, but for some reason it was a challenge to even do that. He grunted as the women cleaned his wound. "My name is Ace. Ace Hieron, pleasure to meet the both of you."

The process didn't take long, and although neither Aliana or Kaska were doctors they patched up his would pretty well. Ace knew some medicine from the many times his mother had to patch him up, so he offered whatever help he could. The wound was sealed and the bleeding had stopped, he was sure it would heal in no time. "I really have to thank the both of you... Without you I would've been rotting in the street with everyone else. Ill- " He was interrupted when a loud bang came to the front door. He heard the door practically fly off its hinges. It was too late though, they were upon them in seconds. Four large man entered the room, all in odd attire... Could it really be? A man who looked like the leader spoke loudly and harshly, the look in his eyes was not a pleasant one either."I would advise the three of you to come with me. Any opposition would be inadvisable."

Ace moved his uninjured arm towards his sword, but found nothing. One of the other man grinned widely at him. "Looking for this?" he said as he pushed the dull end of the scabbard towards Ace's shoulder. The pain was unimaginable. Ace couldn't hold himself, he let out a scream. The pain wouldn't stop even as they were rounded up and led towards the west gate. None of them were allowed speak. Ace was made to walk in front of Kaska and Aliana, with the same man who jabbed the scabbard into his shoulder. The walk was tedious and the pain was harsh. When Ace tried to look back the large man hit his shoulder with the scabbard, but this time harder then the last. Pain tumbled but he tried to keep his composure. These man, they were of immense size and strength, perhaps they were assassins. The symbol on their clothes was that of the Roda Ah K'mht, but Ace was always skeptical of their existence. Even if Ace was fully healed, the most he could do is run away, but even that would be impossible, not to mention that he wouldn't dare abandon the two women that risked their lives to help him.

They finally reached the west gate, Ace noticed people being rounded up. They looked like survivors from the previous attacks. All around them were more men with Roda Ah K'mht symbols on their tunics, Ace's group was shoved to the front to join the other citizens awaiting their fates. A man walked up to the archway of the gate, he wore dark grey robes with a Roda Ah K'mht symbol.

"Welcome everyone! I have an important announcement for all of you!"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Kaska Dalcata


The man, who had introduced himself as Ace, was being patched up pretty nicely. They had covered the wound and stopped the bleeding. Ace began to thank the women but his words were interrupted as the front door of their little hiding hole was thrust open. Four men entered. They moved with confidence and ease, as if they expected little trouble from the house's occupants or whatever trouble they did encounter they would be able to deal with. Kaska felt her eyes widen as they took in their outfits, surely they couldn't be...

"I would advise the three of you to come with me. Any opposition would be inadvisable." The groups apparent leader spoke harshly, his hands indicating his men to move in on the three. Kaska's bow was strapped on her back but she knew she would never have time to draw it, aim and shoot here. Not when the men were so close.
Out of the corner of her eye she saw Ace reach for his sword, only to find that one of the men had managed to move behind him and grab it. "Looking for this?" The man in question asked Ace, pushing the sword into Ace's injured shoulder. He screamed, the pain too much.

Before Kaska could do more than take a step towards Ace she was pulled backwards as one of the other men ripped the bow from her back and flung it against the far wall.
"Now what's a pretty girl like you doing with a weapon?" The man hissed. He grabbed her around the waist before she could even think to make a break for it, laughing at her feeble struggles to get free. It was no use though, the man's arm was like iron and Kaska was forced to stumble out of the house in front of him. With a push he let go of her waist. Kaska didn't try to run, she could tell by the way his eyes were watching her that any move to escape would only see her back in his hold or worse. Kaska had no doubt that he could probably snap her in half if he wanted to. All four men had the look of trained killers who wouldn't hesitate to take a life. Indeed she was sure that these men would be the ones that were partially responsible for tonight's explosions. She had tried to place the symbol on their clothes and had come up with one name Roda Ah K'mht.

So she was forced to follow behind Ace and Aliana. She watched as Ace tried to look over his shoulder, only to have one of the men hit his shoulder again. Kaska's hands scrunched into fists.
A moment later they rounded a corner and arrived at the west gate. More survivors of the initial attacks were being rounded up and shepherded into a massive group, surrounded by the assassins. With a push Ace, Aliana and Kaska were all shoved into the group of survivors and then went to join their comrades in the protective circle around the captives.

Kaska had only a moment to watch this because the next moment a man walked out to the archway of the gate, gaining everyone's attention. He wore dark grey robes with the Roda Ah K'mht symbol,
"Welcome everyone! I have an important announcement for all of you..." His voice echoed out over the silent crowd of survivors and Kaska felt a shiver pass through her. What was going on?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Valentina Sakharov Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK



Image
Image
"I was once told a story as a child that a Demon fell in love with an Angel. The story ended with the Demon's soul becoming purified by the Angel's love and the two were able to live together as one... I know it was just a tale of fantasy, a children's bedtime story... but could such a concept truly become a reality?"




Linde watched the leader like a hawk as he stood at his place near the closed gate to the city in order to deliver his announcement. His calm demeanor and his evil eyes were not what Linde considered to be good indications of his intentions. She had encountered Te'i Sai and Roda Ah K'mht both before and lived to tell the tale mainly because of luck, but it seemed that her luck was about to run out.

"You have all managed to survive a vicious attack by the organization known as Te'i Sai, and for that I extend my congratulations."

Linde's eyes narrowed.

"Te'i Sai strikes from the darkness with, as you can see behind you, tragic consequences. It is lucky for you all that we arrived, and in return for our services we ask nothing more of you than your simple cooperation. Should we appear to you, simply leave us be and everything will be fine. Simple and reasonable, yes?" He asked.

There were plenty of murmurs through the crowd, both kind and ill, about what had happened and whether he was telling the truth.

"I am certain there is confusion about my words, so let me put all your fears and concerns to rest." He said as he raised his arms to silence the crowd.

Many were quieted, but more from fear than interest in what he had to say.

"Te'i Sai was here in Cre' Est with the intention of eliminating several key Senators who have opted for a reformation of laws regarding social equality. Several of them have pushed recently for an increase in such equalities across the board, including allowing women into the military, but Te'i Sai would see those dreams crushed for the sake of what they consider "balance" among the five nations. Because we do not believe in allowing anyone to exercise such control over the lives of others, we have foiled their plans this day. Now, the sad fact is that we could not stop this destruction, but rest assured that what little of the city has survived did so because of our interference. If you want proof, then allow me to show you." He said as he pointed to the back of the group as a small gathering of their Assassins began to approach.

"In the hands of those Assassins from our esteemed organization are explosives planted by Te'i Sai operatives. You can see the proof in the insignia carved into the devices. Again, we were unable to stop the full extent of destruction, but as you can see plainly we did what we could to reduce the effect. Had we not interfered, the entire castle and Royal Family would have met their end and you would live today without a King and Queen."

The murmurs began again, but mostly about the proof of Te'i Sai's explosives. Surely such things could not be faked. Dozens of small letters and ancient runes combined with the fact that it was written in a language known only to the Assassins who originated in Cre' Est meant that it was near impossible to replicate. Roda Ah K'mht originated in Mar Valoa across the sea, so they couldn't possibly know the language or replicate it. At least, that was the logic most people were using to justify the words of the Roda Ah K'mht leader in front of them. Linde, however, was not buying into it. You didn't need to speak a language to replicate what you saw right in front of you. Roda Ah K'mht had fought with Te'i Sai for about four years now, and that was more than enough time to collect the body and clothing of an Assassin from Te'i Sai and study the emblem. All it took was an artist.

"Now then, my friends. Please, take your time and evacuate this city in an orderly fashion. Open the gate!" He yelled.

The gates behind him slowly went down, and freedom was but a short walk away. It took a moment, but the first of the large group whom had been collected began to walk out of the gates to the promise of safety. Linde hung back, allowing a fair amount of people to exit the city before finally beginning to inch towards the gates. As she drew closer, she began to examine the faces of each member of Roda Ah K'mht around her. Some of them were so stoic that she couldn't tell what they were thinking, but others were smiling as if they expected something entertaining to happen. As she looked ahead the leader had disappeared in the few moments she took her eyes off him, and as the others began to walk on the wooden gates to freedom, everything went haywire.

Crossbow bolts fired from out of nowhere rained down upon those who walked across the wooden gate first. Linde stopped dead in her tracks and knelt down to crouch as she tried to pinpoint the origins of the bolts. She knew that many were coming from outside the gate, but she couldn't tell exactly where the ones responsible were standing. Others were standing on the rooftops around them firing down on the crowd, and the scene unfolding was one of pure and utter chaos. People were dropping like flies as those who survived and were not hit with lethal shots tried to run in every direction at once. Linde was nearly knocked over by several people trying to run by her, and as she looked around once more she began to see that yet more of the Assassins began to appear to witness the carnage as the streets were painted red.

It was sick how they were smiling down upon the scene, and as Linde turned her attention to the gate she realized that anyone and everyone who'd made it outside was dead as they were beginning to close the gate and let the bodies on it fall to the ground gracelessly. Linde was horrified and disgusted with the display, but there was a change in scenery as she happened to look over her left shoulder towards the rooftops as she saw splashes of blood pouring over the edges as the Assassins who were once there had disappeared and were replaced by a shower of crimson liquid. She watched it almost as if it were in slow motion as it struck the ground and mixed with that which was already there before she saw a flash of black clothing on one rooftop as none other than the Red-Eyed Demon leaped across a gap in the rooftops to be met in combat by another Roda Ah K'mht Assassin. Not more than thirty feet away from where Linde crouched was the Ruby-Eyed Witch as she carved a path through the Assassins on the ground who tried to rush and stop her. However, with the crossbow units outside the gates cut off and the ones on the roof being cut to ribbons, they had only their own skills to go on and it was clear that they were nowhere near her level as she brushed them aside effortlessly.

Linde watched as the people continued to flee for their lives from the scene, but she remained still until the show was over. Nearly all the people had fled the scene as Linde stood up and watched as the Red-Eyed Demon calmly jumped off the second story roof of a nearby rooftop and landed softly on the ground to meet his sister before they both looked at her and disappeared into the city. The look was brief, but she knew the look well enough to understand that they had just told her without words that she now owed them a favor in the coming days. She knew they'd come for her eventually to seek out the favor, so she made a mental note to herself to avoid being too stealthy with her movements or location. Though they could easily track her down, she didn't want to appear to be avoiding them. If they thought that she was avoiding them and trying to dodge a favor, she'd be dead before she knew what hit her.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Aliana bathed and cleaned Ace’s wound in silence. Once she had siphoned off the blood, Kaska had returned with bath. Soaking strips of cloth, she cleaned it more thoroughly and stepped back to inspect it. The wound was fairly bad, but she took a deep breath and stepped up to tackle it. When the other two made suggestions or help, instead of snapping or ignoring them, she heeded their words or stepped back to let Kaska intervene. This was unusual for Ali. Normally, she was independent and would punctuate their offerings with eye rolling or long sighs. But she kept her tongue. It didn’t take long to clean the wound, stitch it and bandage it up tightly in fresh cloth that had been boiled in the water. The women had done all that they could do. It was clean and covered. Ali didn’t like to think of infection, but as long as Ace kept it clean then it was unlikely to become infected.

Turning her back on Ace and Kaska, Ali began to clean up after them. Scrubbing at the cloths, she watched as the water turned crimson with blood, listening to Ace’s gratitude. She resisted the urge to roll her eyes, even though her back was to them.

"I really have to thank the both of you... Without you I would've been rotting in the street with everyone else. Ill- "

Ali whipped around as the door crashed open, snapping from its hinges and falling to the floor. Silhouetted in the doorway were four men, who crossed with threshold without invitation. Almost reflexively she reached for her bow, swung it off her back and loaded an arrow. Surprisingly she did this incredibly fast. In a normal situation it took most humans a several seconds to realise that she had drawn a weapon, but the men’s eyes barely flickered to the deadly weapon. However, it did not stop their approach, as they stomped into the house. Ali’s lip curled in an almost feral snarl as she narrowed her eyes. One drew close to her, reaching across and snatching her bow from her slender fingertips.

“Give. That. Back.” Ali snarled furiously, starting forwards to take her bow back.

“Well, aren’t you a feisty one?” He laughed a rough, disgusting laugh that set Ali’s teeth on edge as well as making her skin crawl. “I could have some fun with you…” He wrapped a thick-set arm around Ali’s waist. Almost instantly, she fought to be free of his hold, kicking and scratching at every inch of skin that she could reach. He simply laughed as the others tormented Ace and Kaska as well. Bile rose in her throat. Bringing down her head, she sunk her teeth hard into his arm. The man holding her let out a yell of pain and released Ali quickly. After she straightened, she shot start towards the door before another set of arms grabbed her by the shoulders, picked her up and set her in line with the others.

“I wouldn’t even think about trying to escape. Next time we will just kill you.” Ali cast a look over towards the man that she had bitten. He looked furious, blood dripping from the teeth marks in his arm. She didn’t doubt that he would kill her if she attempted escape. Following behind Kaska, she was seething. How dare they treat them like animals? A thought dawned on her and she peered curiously at the men without trying to attract their attention. Were these assassins? They sure looked like they might be. In that case, it was probably best to remain on their good sides. But how could they escape? The whole journey, Ali looked around surreptitiously, looking for a way out. No opportunity came and before long they were at the West Gate. Hands pushed them into the crowd, which all looked bedraggled and beaten down. Ali scanned for her brother and father, but could not see them. She only hoped they had returned home, to safety.

"Welcome everyone! I have an important announcement for all of you! "You have all managed to survive a vicious attack by the organization known as Te'i Sai, and for that I extend my congratulations."

Ali glared angrily up at the man, crossing her arms tightly across her chest. She listened carefully as he bleated about how lucky they were to have survived and pleaded for their cooperation. For some reason, Ali wasn’t buying a single word of what he was saying and from the murmurs throughout the crowd, they weren’t buying it either. As he continued, Ali glanced at Ace and Kaska, with whom she remained, to see if they agreed with what was being said. It seemed as though it could be true, but why did she feel as though they were being lied to?

"Now then, my friends. Please, take your time and evacuate this city in an orderly fashion. Open the gate!"
Hanging back, she grabbed Kaska and Ace by the wrist, shaking her heart slightly. She didn’t want them to go through that gate. They couldn’t simply leave the town, especially when her parents were only a short distance away. If they could escape to the farm without being seen then they could get everyone together and think of a plan. Besides, she simply did not trust what was going on. The first group moved slowly through the gate as the rest watched, shuffling behind. Nodding her heads towards the edge of town, she turned away.

In that second chaos erupted. Spinning on her heel, back towards the gate, she watched in horror as crossbow bolts rained down on the unsuspecting people. Eyes widening, she shook her head in complete disbelief as bodies fell into the dirt. Wrenching her head upwards, she catch sight of the men on top of the roofs. They needed to move. And fast. Grabbing the other two by their wrists again, she tugged them to the edge of the square, where she flattened up against the building, hidden from sight from the men above. Across the square, Ali’s attention was caught by a man jumping between the rooftops killing the men as he went. Surely it could not be? But Ali had seen the glimpse of crimson. It was the Red-Eyed Demon.

“Did you see that?!” She demanded of the other two, turning to them as people fled in all directions. It was calming down, but bodies lay everywhere.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Kaska Dalcata


The man's words were spoken eloquently, his voice was strong and clear and Kaska could tell that he was swaying more than a few people. He was blaming the Te'i Sai for the destruction.

"Te'i Sai was here in Cre' Est with the intention of eliminating several key Senators who have opted for a reformation of laws regarding social equality... Now, the sad fact is that we could not stop this destruction, but rest assured that what little of the city has survived did so because of our interference. If you want proof, then allow me to show you." The assassin pointed towards a group that carried an explosive with the mark of the Te'i Sai on it.

Kaska's brows furrowed into a frown, her doubt growing by the minute. It didn't make sense. If these men were truly there to protect and help them then why had they forced herself, Ali and Ace out of the house with such force. The men had taken all their weapons and roughly led them to this crowd. Around the edges of the gathered people the large warriors stood, acting as a sort of wall to discourage anyone from leaving.

"Now then, my friends. Please, take your time and evacuate this city in an orderly fashion. Open the gate!" The Roda Ah K'mht man's words sent a chill through Kaska. The thought of home lured her, her body ached for the warmth and comfort of her own bed and the safety of her parents' home. But the sense of dread that had been building in her only grew as the man spoke. Surely it wasn't this easy.
Ali grabbed Kaska's wrist, her head shaking. Kaska couldn't help but feel relieved, she wasn't the only one to question this man's words. Kaska hung back with Ali and Ace, letting others rush past her in their haste to leave the destroyed city.

It was a moment later that the first shot was fired. Screams erupted and soon bolts were flying through the air was startling accuracy. A man thumped into Kaska, sending her reeling for balance. She managed to stay on her feet only after the man slid off her and hit the ground, an arrow buried in his back.
Again Kaska felt a tug on her wrist and she let Ali lead her to the edge of the square. Kaska sheltered as best she could against the building, her eyes racing across the square as she watched the devastation. Kaska glanced at Ace, they had had time to fix up his shoulder but the men that had collected the three had been particularly heavy handed with him, Kaska hoped he was alright.
Ali's attention was up, focused on something above the death. Kaska followed her line of sight to see a man. He was leaping from rooftop to rooftop, nimbly balancing on each precarious pinnacle as he cut down each man. Movement on the ground caught Kaska's eye and she glanced down to see a female killing scores of the assassins that had been killing from the ground. Although Kaska had never seen either of them before she knew from stories that these were the legendary Red-Eyed Demon and his sister the Ruby-Eyed Witch.

As quickly and suddenly as the killing had began and the two crimson eyed killers had appeared, it stopped. Both the Red-Eyed demon and his sister left.

“Did you see that?!” Ali's voice brought Kaska's attention back to her immediate surroundings. Those that had survived were quickly fleeing the square. Blood soaked the ground and the large number of bodies seemed like something out of nightmares. Some of the bodies were so heavily riddled with crossbow bolts that it was hard to see where the person began.

"I saw it." Kaska replied. She was fighting back the urge to vomit. She had seen death before, most people had, but this scene was not something she could easily stomach. She took a deep breath to quieten her stomach.
I will not vomit. She thought to herself. It didn't help that her clothes were covered in blood and guts.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK



Image
Image
"I was once told a story as a child that a Demon fell in love with an Angel. The story ended with the Demon's soul becoming purified by the Angel's love and the two were able to live together as one... I know it was just a tale of fantasy, a children's bedtime story... but could such a concept truly become a reality?"




The Capitol City of Cre' Est


Linde was still in mild shock from everything which had transpired around her this most horrible day. She had lost her apothecary and her home, she had just witnessed the brutal murder of dozens of innocent people (to say nothing of how many must have perished in the flames and explosions), and to top it off the light was fading alarmingly quickly. It was almost as if the heavens themselves wished for this day to be over and done with as soon as possible.

However.

""Excuse me? I need some assistance with her. I believe you had said you were a medic?" Came a voice behind her.

She looked back to see the young man and woman whom she had promised to help before, and she shook her head for a moment to clear her mind of the shock and sadness.

"Of course, forgive me." She said softly as she gently took the young woman from his arms and laid her out carefully on the ground.

Linde took great care to ensure that her touch was soft and her movements were precise so that she would cause as little discomfort to the young woman as possible. She examined her for a moment, feeling out her major muscle groups and joints for spots of pain, but nothing on her front seemed to trigger it save for when Linde applied a bit of weight and pressure to her shoulder. Taking that into account, Linde gently lifted her body onto its side as she spied the blood along the young woman's back. Judging by the amount, Linde had her work cut out for her with the limited supplies she had on hand.

"Miss, if you are bothered by issues of modesty, then hold down the front of your shirt." She said in a firm but still caring doctor's tone of voice.

Linde then lifted up the woman's shirt along the length of her back so she could see the wound, bringing the shirt up and gently folding it over the woman's shoulders so that the front did not reveal anything so long as she were to hold it down. Linde reached into her back pocket and brought out a small white piece of cloth which she folded in her hands and proceeded to wipe around wound. She didn't touch the wound with it, as it was not sterilized or coated in any antiseptics which would help, so it was simply used to wipe the blood away before she tossed it aside. As the area around the wound was cleaned, Linde could see the extent of the damage. The cut had severed a few veins which was why it bled so much, but otherwise the skin took the brunt of the damage with minimal muscle tissue damage. She would be fine with plenty of rest and the right rehabilitation exercises to keep the muscles working.

Linde then reached into a small pouch on her waist which the Assassins remarkably had left alone and brought out two small vials of blue and green/blue liquid. She looked down at the young woman.

"Miss, this is going to hurt. She whispered softly.

She looked up at the young man.

"Come, hold her hand and support her head." She asked him.

When the young man was in place, Linde carefully poured the blue liquid into the wound. The woman seemed fine for a few seconds, but then she could stand it no longer. She yelled out in pain and squeezed down on the young man's hand as she cried out in pain. Linde worked as quickly as she could, bringing out another small piece of cloth from the pouch which this time she used to wipe into the wound itself to not only clean it of debris, but to further rub the concoction into it. This made the young woman scream a bit louder, and Linde had a hard time concentrating for a second, but as the concoction began to take full hold on the wound, the pain began to subside. Linde then applied the blue/green liquid which helped to cool the skin and muscle and help further douse the pain she was feeling as Linde cleaned the area around the wound and threw the other cloth away as well.

Linde brought out a single needle and a small strand of sewing thread and proceeded to stitch her wound shut. The blue/green liquid not only made the area of the wound feel cool, but temporarily numbed it so that she couldn't feel the stitched being applied. Linde finished her work and placed the needle back into her pouch as she brought out a single small square piece of protective cloth which she used to cover the wound and tape down with a small batch of medical tape. The tape was running low, but she had enough to get the job done. If she was going to help anyone else, she'd need to find another store that was still standing with medical supplies.

"That should do for now. That bandage will need to be replaced come tomorrow, but otherwise I believe it's safe to say you'll recover just fine. Make sure to allow your muscles plenty of rest today, and come tomorrow start working them little by little to keep proper blood flow going and give them a better chance to heal." She said as she smiled at the young woman and helped her to her feet.

Linde looked around for a moment and saw others who were still in the area as well. She looked to the two young people in front of her and gave them a slight bow of her head.

"My name is Linde, and if you should ever need my services again, please don't hesitate to call upon me. For now, I must see to anyone else here who needs help." She said as she gave another bow of her head and turned to walk towards the others.

She first approached two young women and another young man who seemed to be in a great deal of pain. One of the women looked to be nearly choking back the urge to throw up, but given the smell and sight of the bodies all around, Linde couldn't blame her. However, her focus was primarily on the young man, as he looked to have sustained a rather serious injury.

"Excuse me everyone, but I'm a doctor." She said softly.

She looked to the young man.

"You seem to be injured quite badly. I can provide some light assistance if you wish, but if you need further help I'm afraid we'll have to seek it out as my apothecary was destroyed earlier in the explosions." She said sadly as she recalled the event.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

There were hundreds of survivors, that was a good thing, right? The Roda Ah K'mht delivered his speech about the Te'i Sai being responsible and that they Roda Ah K'mht were the crusaders that saved all the innocents. Ace knew better though, as did a lot of others. The words coming out of the leaders were mouth were nothing short of lies and deceptions. Ace heard countless stories about both Roda Ah K'mht and the Te'i Sai, he knew better... but perhaps legends are just legends? Ace glanced around, looking at all the assassins posed in positions on the roofs and behind the survivors, their faces spelled out danger.

Every assassin in view had a face of a killer, and every single one of them had a heinous smile. It send a shiver throughout his body. Ace knew better though, these assassins were of immense strength, agility and skill. There would be no running or fighting back, unless of course he wanted to be massacred.

"Now then, my friends. Please, take your time and evacuate this city in an orderly fashion. Open the gate!" the man's words came swiftly. Something wasn't right... As people started walking out the gates Ace, Kaska, and Ali hung back. Then it started, the assassins on the roofs fired their crossbows, in every direction there was an assassin with a sword killing off survivors. Death lurked around every corner, and Ace could do nothing to stop it.

That was when the unexpected happened. On the roofs a different shade of blood was being spilled, the blood of the assassins. Ace caught a glimpse, but it sent a shiver through his body. He froze in place. He heard the stories, hell everyone has. The crimson eyes were one of a kind, they were of the Red-Eyed Demon. Ace made sure to stay with Ali and Kaska, he owed them his life. At his side there was large thump, an assassin fell of the roof covered in blood. The same assassins that took Ace's sword. And there it was, strapped to his side. Ace walked towards the body and reclaimed what was his. He caught another glimpse, this figure had the same crimson eyes, but it was a woman. The Ruby-Eyed Witch.

The blood bath ended as quickly as it started, but the panic was still very alive. Survivors rushed to their loved ones, and those with a half a brain were far from the city.

“Did you see that?!”

"I saw it."

Ace was speechless, he simply gazed at the wounded, and the dead. He wished death upon every Roda Ah K'mht, he wished them to burn for eternity. Through the chaos Ace forgot about his shoulder, but as everything sattled down the pain came back more real then ever. Before he could say anything they were approached by another woman.

"Excuse me everyone, but I'm a doctor. You seem to be injured quite badly. I can provide some light assistance if you wish, but if you need further help I'm afraid we'll have to seek it out as my apothecary was destroyed earlier in the explosions."


A doctor left alive amidst the chaos? That was good. "Forget me, there are others who require more assistance. Ill be - " He grunted quietly as the pain jolted through his arm, it was bleeding again. "Fine."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Zelic and Sina


Both siblings were filled with relief that this woman was willing to help them. Zel had been a little surprised by the woman's strength, not that Sina was big by any means, but the medic looked quite thin herself. The swordsman had to reprimand himself at the thought. Assuming things and underestimating women was never a safe thing to do. He gave a quick pray for forgiveness to the goddess for his insensitive thinking before bringing his head back.

"Miss if you are bothered by issues of modesty, then hold down the front of your shirt." Not Sina was not one for modesty. She knew she was attractive and in her vacations to her brother's homeland she had spent much of her time scantly clad during the summer heat. Zel on the other hand did have modesty and just as he realized what the medic was about to do, his hand shot forward to grab the front of his sister's shirt down. Now he couldn't cover up as much as he'd like to have, but he kept Sina's bust covered relatively well.

The press of…whatever it was against Sina's back felt strange. Her wound wasn't exactly one that she could have seen herself, but she knew it wasn't good. Then the dreaded warning of pain. Sina liked to think of herself as tough, sure she liked girly things and whatnot, but she had spent most of her life getting herself hurt somehow. The younger woman was confident that she'd be able to handle anything. Zelic did his part and did what the medical woman instructed him in down.

The pain wasn't that bad…at first. A few moments after the liquid touch her skin though and the dull pain turned into a burning sensation. Sina kept silent for as long as she could, but eventually her screams won out over her pride. Her brother did his best to comfort her, stroking her hair softly and telling her that it would be over soon. It couldn't have been fast enough when the area changed from a fiery sensation to where she couldn't even feel anything in the viscidity of her wound. Sina welcomed the reprieve with a loud exhale as she allowed the other woman to sew her up.

The Maliq siblings listened closely to the medic's, Linde as she introduced herself moments later, instructions as she helped Sina to her feet. The young woman was rather shaky standing there for a few moments before finally being able to stand her ground without her brother's assistance. "Thank you." Sina said graciously, smiling at Linde as the medic excused herself from the pair.

Zelic turned his attention from his sister the Linde who was walking away from them. He felt that he owed her for her assistance, it she hadn't been there he was sure that his sister would have died in his arms. The thought terrified him, but looking back at Sina's happy, but exhausted face, he was extremely grateful for Linde's presence.

The siblings watched her make her way over to a small group of three. The man appeared to be injured while the women didn't look good, like both were feeling the effects of nausea. Zelic realized that Linde had used quite a bit of supplies patching up Sina and wondered if maybe she was actually running low. It wasn't like she had a giant medical bag at hand to get what she needed.

Taking ahold of his sister's hand, Zel slowly walked Sina over to where Linde and the other three were. Once reaching them, he helped Sina sit on the ground before turning to Linde. "We have a few things we'd like to offer you if you need them." While his bag held little to nothing in it but his own clothing, Sina's carried a bit of useful medical supplies. Zel heft her bag off of his shoulder and place it on the ground. He knelt down and opened it, moving the contents inside around until he located what he needed. "Here." He said, holding a few rolls of bandages up to her.

"There's some expensive salves in there too." Sina announced in an after thought. She wanted to thank Linde as well and if that meant giving away her stuff then so be it. "A needle and thread is in the front pocket."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK



Image
Image
"I was once told a story as a child that a Demon fell in love with an Angel. The story ended with the Demon's soul becoming purified by the Angel's love and the two were able to live together as one... I know it was just a tale of fantasy, a children's bedtime story... but could such a concept truly become a reality?"




The Capitol City of Cre' Est


"Forget me, there are others who require more assistance. Ill be - " He grunted quietly as the pain jolted through his arm, it was bleeding again. "Fine."

Linde looked at him for a moment, but then smiled as she closed her eyes.

"Well, I can't say that you are not the chivalrous one, but at the moment your wounds are the worst I can see. Anyone else who has wounds more grievous are either dead or fled this area where I cannot be of any assistance to them." She said with a slightly sad smile.

She was about to approach a bit closer when the other two individuals she'd helped before arrived.

"We have a few things we'd like to offer you if you need them." The young man said.

"Oh, well thank you very much. Any help I can find is much appreciated." She replied.

He handed her everything that he and the girl she had helped before had and she gave him a warm smile.

"Again, you have my sincerest gratitude for helping me." She said with a slight bow of her head as she turned towards the other man.

"Alright then. You've practically been run through my friend, so sit still for me and it will be over before you know it." She said with a light hearted smile and a slight chuckle.

Without waiting for a reply or a retort, she walked forward and placed everything she needed on the ground next to her, taking care not to let the fresh needle touch anything dirty by placing it in her pocket for the time being. She forced the man to sit down by using a basic trip technique as she applied gentle force to his chest while using her left foot to stop his own feet from going back towards his upper body. The result was that he was forcibly seated onto her right knee, which she planted beneath him just before he would have hit the ground. She gently let him slide off her leg until he was sitting on the ground before she got to work.

She looked at his shoulder and discovered that the seam was already coming undone, so she simply tore the entire sleeve away from the seam so she could look at his shoulder completely. The wound was bad, much worse than the girl's shoulder given the extent of the muscle tissue damage she was seeing. Luckily none of his major arteries had been pierced by shrapnel, but still, this was no basic level wound to treat. With her now very limited resources, she would have quite the time finding a way to fix it.

"Okay, sit very still." She advised.

She gently pried the skin of the wound to either side, allowing her a greater field of vision into the wound. This was likely very uncomfortable for him, but it would not be so painful for him that he'd start screaming... yet. She didn't see anything out of the ordinary in the wound save for a few small splinters of wood and dirt, so she retrieved a small pair of tweezers from her pouch at her waist and began to pluck them out one by one. The process took about fifteen seconds to get everything out, and she put the tweezers down on the ground beside her since she wouldn't be needing them any longer. She checked the bag the other young man had been kind enough to lend to her and found a very useful salve to use. The salve was comprised of a blend of herbs called Noctus Alafia, Metzodrobium, and a small amount of simple Camphor. The first two were unique herbs to Cre' Est and were both well suited to tissue recovery, and the third was a well known and highly used oil to first cool and then warm the nerve endings to mitigate pain.

"Deep breath..." She warned.

She used the thumb and index finger of her left hand to pry open the wound again, and then the pain began. She pressed the salve into the wound and twisted it around as she applied a fair amount of pressure to it in order to really get the mixture down into the muscle tissue where the majority of the damage was. If this didn't get at least one good cry of pain out of him, she'd be impressed, but even she had to admit that this would be extremely painful and not something that most average people could simply grit their teeth for. Regardless, she continued to twist the salve until she was certain that it had covered enough area to achieve maximum effect before removing the small cloth she used to apply it and putting it aside. Over the next few moments, the cooling effect of the Camphor kicked in to ease the pain around the wounded area while Linde got to work stitching it shut. When she finished, she smiled at him as she put what was still useable away and tossed the rest as she stood up and offered him her hand to help him stand.

"Sorry about digging the salve in like that, but believe me it will be worth the pain you went through when the wound heals over. Until then, you'll have to avoid using that arm if you don't want permanent muscle damage. You could permanently lose up to 7% of your arms physical potential if you don't rest it properly, and one who carries a weapon such as yours cannot afford such a loss I'm sure." She said gently.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Aliana had opened her mouth to speak again when they were approached abruptly by a woman. Almost instantly, her eyebrows furrowed as she frowned deeply and cross her arms tightly across her chest. Subtly she took a tiny step to her left, in front of the pair she had met in the suburbs of town. Ali felt strangely protective over these two people now that they had been thrust together in a sick twist of Fate. But the woman introduced herself as a doctor and offered a hand of help to Ace, who needed it more than most. Reluctantly, Ali relaxed her position and sunk back into the shadows of the building where they had been hiding. But her grey eyes watched carefully and curiously, narrowed in concentration and warning.

"We did the best we could with what we had..." Ali muttered, almost defensively as the woman looked at Ace's wound. She doubted anyone heard her, so she returned to her sulky, sullen silence and simply watched. When two others joined them, her eyes barely flickered in their direction. They were of little interest. It appeared they too had been helped by the strange woman, who offered help. They were giving her a variety of gifts that they happened to be carrying on them. Suppressing a roll of her eyes, their gratefulness was grating on her nerves. Could they not see she was tending a patient? However, she saw how invaluable the items were whilst she tended to Ace's shoulder. Begrudgingly she admitted that they two had been of help, even though it pained her to do so. Watching, now without interest, she crossed her arms again. Whilst she was concerned for Ace's wound, a greater worry gnawed at her. Where were her family? Hopefully safe, but who knew. Would her mother and sister have walked through that gate willingly? Craning her head, she peered through the bars that separated the dead from the town. It was impossible to see any faces or familiar assets that belonged to her family. The anxiety still twisted her stomach. It was then that her eyes fell upon a man who appeared to be fussing over his fine clothes. Tutting loudly, in disgust, she fixed him with a glare and shook her head. Some people simply did not grasp what was important in life. And his clothes were about the least important aspect of everything that had happened.

The doctor woman was talking again. Ali's attention turned back to her.

"Well, we thank you for your help," She replied shortly, though it was not really her place. "But we really need to get out of here. It is not safe. If we can make it to my farm..." But really, her suggestions ran out there. What could they do when they reached the farm? Most of the town was dead and for all they knew there were more assassins on their way right now. The thought made her shudder and she shook her head. "We just have to get out of here. I don't care which of you come with us, but make your mind up quickly." Pushing off from the wall, she drew herself to full height (which wasn't very high at all) and squared herself for a fight or a disagreement from these people. Surely they saw the danger that lay here?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Hadrian had been observing how the woman had tended to the wounded. She at least possessed a modicum of skill. He had to admit he was surprised. His previous assessment might have been too harsh. This opened up a lot of opportunities. While he wasn’t planning on getting hurt anytime soon, it would no doubt be a most wise precaution to stay near a doctor. The assassins had been taught a lesson, but he didn’t think they were fast learners. The way they had fallen to the Red-Eyed demon and his sibling showed a surprising lack of ability to adjust and common sense. He himself would have made a run for it at the first sign of trouble. Nevertheless, despite the fact that their intellectual capacity was lacking, their physical prowess was worrisome enough.
When he saw the doctor had finished tending to the wounded, he decided to approach the group. After all, he no longer risked being asked to help. When he came nearer he recognized Sina and Zelic. He gave a curt nod of acknowledgement with his head before focusing on the group. It seemed most of them were commoners, but at least there was a fellow noble among them. Finally someone worth talking to.

“Ah, hello everyone,” he spoke, nervously rubbing his hands together, “I am most pleased to see you all survived the past onslaught. I couldn’t help but hear you talks about leaving this place? In that case, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Hadrian Kirkegard of the noble and powerful house Kirkegard from Veilbrand. I have just made the decision to join you. It seems no one is going to attend to me,” he snorted, “but I suppose I should have expected that by now. The empire of Cre’ Est truly has the worst priorities in the world. It makes you wonder how they’ve managed to stay this powerful for so long. Even worse, my retinue no doubt perished in these recent incidents. A just punishment for their resignation, but it robbed them from the opportunity to show remorse. But there’s an upside to all these unfortunate incidents, you now have the privilege of enjoying my company. Believe me, having me as your companion would be most beneficial for you all,” he gave them all a short smile.

“So, where do we go? I heard the suggestion of visiting the farm of milady here? While it is definitely below my normal standards, these are exceptional times. The recent destruction unfortunately ruined the inn I was staying at so I can't offer a fitting home for our group. Regardless of where we will go, I’d like to make a stop at a tailor. Some peasant had the nerve of bleeding on me,” he grunted, pointing at his stained clothes, “what is this world coming to,” he shook his head slightly and studied the group more closely. They had managed to incur quite some wounds. He just hoped it wasn't a bad sign. While this day had been horrible, no doubt it could still get worse.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Clearly fine was a bad choice of words, the doctor as it seems could see through him. Showing weakness wasn't part of Ace's personality, and neither was depending on others or putting anyone at risk. It was his fault, he was so careless throughout the city, if any of these people get hurt Ace would never forgive himself. "Well, I can't say that you are not the chivalrous one, but at the moment your wounds are the worst I can see. Anyone else who has wounds more grievous are either dead or fled this area where I cannot be of any assistance to them." There was no arguing with that fact, anything worse means death, and anyone with a lesser injury escaped to spare their lives. Another group approached, handing the doctor a beg with medical items. They looked battered up, perhaps the same doctor helped them before.

The procedure was, to say the least, unpleasant. If Ace thought he knew what pain felt like, he was wrong. The doctor began slowly and carefully, no real pain there but that all changed in a matter of seconds. When the doctor started to apply the salve into the wound it felt like the entire world was coming apart. Ace bit his shirt so he wouldn't scream, but that alone didn't help much. Ace tried to hold back, but he let out few screams now and then. He snapped his eyes shut and dug deep into his already ripped shirt. Suddenly the pain stopped, and he was offered help to his feet. He looked at his shoulder, and it looked pretty good. A real doctors work, it was still aching from before but it wasn't terrible.

"Sorry about digging the salve in like that, but believe me it will be worth the pain you went through when the wound heals over. Until then, you'll have to avoid using that arm if you don't want permanent muscle damage. You could permanently lose up to 7% of your arms physical potential if you don't rest it properly, and one who carries a weapon such as yours cannot afford such a loss I'm sure."

"Thanks, I really appreciate the help. Although it doesn't seem like I will getting much rest, not for the time being at least."

He heard Ali say something about getting to her farm, she sounded a bit defensive but it wasn't all her fault. "What Ali means is we would love for you to come with us. We could appreciate all the help we can get. My name is Ace Hieron pleasure to meet all of you." Another man approached, but this was looked a lot more familiar. “Ah, hello everyone I am most pleased to see you all survived the past onslaught. I couldn’t help but hear you talks about leaving this place? In that case, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Hadrian Kirkegard of the noble and powerful house Kirkegard from Veilbrand. I have just made the decision to join you. It seems no one is going to attend to me, but I suppose I should have expected that by now. The empire of Cre’ Est truly has the worst priorities in the world. It makes you wonder how they've managed to stay this powerful for so long. Even worse, my retinue no doubt perished in these recent incidents. A just punishment for their resignation, but it robbed them from the opportunity to show remorse. But there’s an upside to all these unfortunate incidents, you now have the privilege of enjoying my company. Believe me, having me as your companion would be most beneficial for you all."

Ace did know this man, he lived in the same city as Ace, and the Kirkegard's were up the chain with the Hieron's. Hadrian has a certain reputation, but not knowing the man personally Ace wasn't the one to judge. Before Ace could speak the man went on “So, where do we go? I heard the suggestion of visiting the farm of milady here? While it is definitely below my normal standards, these are exceptional times. The recent destruction unfortunately ruined the inn I was staying at so I can't offer a fitting home for our group. Regardless of where we will go, I’d like to make a stop at a tailor. Some peasant had the nerve of bleeding on me,”

Great, another snobby noble that thinks he is above everyone. Hadrian's remark hit Ace right to the core though, who is he to talk about peasant's when they are the reason he is alive. Ace cleared his throat, he relaxed himself a bit, now was not the time to pick fights. "Ah, Hadrian, I see you reputation proceeds you."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

The first reactions of the group were rather underwhelming. The young man had the urge to address him with his first name. Even though his clothes hinted at a certain status, the behavior definitely didn’t match them. He had dared to use Hadrian’s first name. And to make matters worse, he wasn’t sure whether the remark aimed at his reputation was meant as an insult or not. He decided to assume it wasn’t, his reputation was impeccable after all.

“Ah yes, naturally. I am glad some people are at least aware of my importance. I’ve been hard-pressed to find informed individuals as of late,” he paused for a second, slightly unsure how to continue. Luckily the woman introduced herself. Hadrian was pleasantly surprised. She displayed manners he hadn’t expected to find here and especially not from a woman. He smiled slightly but was taken aback when she revealed more than she intended. In this case he decided to forgive her the clumsiness that was so typical for peasants. Hadrian had always been one to appreciate a good view. Back in Veilbrand he had made sure to have experiences befitting a connoisseur like himself. He gave her a more inquiring look and smiled slightly. She was definitely a fine specimen. Perhaps God had finally gotten around to giving Hadrian the pleasant experiences he was entitled to. Mind you, he still had a lot to make up for after today.

Her offer took him even more aback, the smile momentarily disappearing. A woman as his bodyguard? The notion was almost as absurd as her claims. Still, it was seemingly the best offer that was going to appear any time soon. As long as no one important saw him relying on a woman for protection, it would be alright. Besides, he could always claim he had hired her mostly for her other talents. No doubt the other nobles would understand this after a short explanation. His smile reappeared.

“You are all forgiven. I understand we are all a bit shaken after the recent events. As for your offer Linde, I most magnanimously accept it,” he blurted, still a bit flustered after the view, “I’m sure you will make a wonderful bodyguard. You are after all one of the few people I’ve met in Cre’ Est that display the respect my status demands. By that alone you are already a step ahead of some previous people I have had employed,” he added in a slightly reproachful tone.

And if her skills as a bodyguard would be lacking, he was sure he would find another job for her. He was sure she would be able to offer other services. Anyone would do anything to remain in his service. Now there was a pleasant thought. He moistened his lips and forced those thoughts to the back of his mind. He would have time for that later.
“As far as payment goes, well, I’m sure we will be able to sort that out in a more convenient time. Given the circumstances, I’m sure you can understand I don’t have too much on me. I also have to keep the expenses for a new outfit in mind, but this is merely a temporary inconvenience,” he spoke with a slight hint of embarrassment.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Zel was quite impressed by Linde's knowlege and medical training. Medicine had always fascinated him since his near-death experience, but the swordsman knew he didn't really have the brains to focus on that type of stuff. He left the bandaging and stitches to Sina, but even she only knew the basics. Most people would be squeemish about sticking their fingers into an open wound of another person, Linde on the other hand didn't flinch. Yup, he was most fascinated.

"Don't stare, you're being creepy." Sina mumbled, giving her brother a nudge at his behavior. People would get the wrong idea about him if he continued looking at the other guys terrible wound with a goofy look on his face.

Both siblings then turned to one of the injured man's companions. She was talking about her farm and implying that it could be safer there. Zel had to wonder if that was true though. These assassin's were ruthless and although her place of residence was away from the city, it didn't mean that tragedy didn't befall them. He closed his eyes and gave a silent prayer of safety to the woman's family. Sina thought she was rather pushy and off putting. The young woman simply rolled her eyes at her aloof attitute, but Sina wasn't exactly in the position to choose her own fate at the moment. The numbing salves were ebbing away a bit and she could already feel the stinging of pain in her back. Zel would have to be the one to decide where they were heading.

And of course there was Hadrian. The minunte he sauntered over to their litte group, Sina's expression abruptly changed to one of disgust. She had thought the arrogant noble was horrible from the moment that they had met and watching him blatently disrespect the dead was almost too much for her. She had to quite literally bite her tongue to keep herself from blowing up at the man like she had before. His speech about his status and how the people of Cr'Est were beneath him left her with a tick in her right eye. Zelic saw the signs and he sat next to her sister trying to calm her with suggestions to ignore the man. But then Linde went an indulged the pigheaded man and Sina could just see tje wheels turning in his head.

Sina abruptly shoved her brother, sending the swordsman from his crouched position to sitting on his butt in surprise. "Ms. Linde!" She shouted, moving faster to stand than she should have, but her wound was still mostly numb. "You shouldn't indulge his disgusting behavior." The younger woman walked over to the two she wsa talking to, poking her finger into Hadrian's chest. "You forgive us? Are you kidding me? You're status should be dragged through a pile of steaming horse crap for the way you've been acting. You stupid bas-" Just as abruptly as she began she was lifted into the air by her brother and turned away from Hadrian and Linde.

Sina was screaming, raving, and cursing as Zelic carried her a few steps away and tried to calm her. He talked to his sister in a stern voice, begging her to calm herself and not to let Hadrian get the best of her. Once she was quiet, albeit still fiming with her arms crossed just below her chest, Zelic walked back over to Hadrian. "Sorry for her outburst to both of you. It's just been a long day."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Ace looked at the man with disgust, holding himself back from saying something. He was caught off guard though, Linde's reply to Hadrian's rude remarks was very surprised. Impertinent, is that what they were? Everyone else in the group was surely as surprised. That's when things took a sharp turn, his reply sparked some anger in the young girl standing by someone who seemed like her brother. The entire interaction was very amusing to say the least, she said everything Ace was holding himself back from saying.

Her brother attempted to calm her down, and it worked for the most part. "Sorry for her outburst to both of you. It's just been a long day." - That's it, he couldn't hold it in anymore, not after such a long and miserable day. Ace started laughing, especially when he saw Hadrian's face. Ace didn't want to risk his fathers relationship with the Kirkegard's, so he kept his mouth shut... for the time being. He looked at the group, some of them seemed very able with a sword, and others with support.

Ace wasn't sure how much help Hadrian would do if they got into trouble, he would surly run and hide. Standing around wouldn't do the group any good, it was time to go. "Very well. Shall we be on our way then? Standing around bickering will do us no good. Especially given our circumstances. Just a thought though Hadrian, if I were you I would stay out of her way." Ace smiled, feeling accomplished without letting his anger take control of him.

"So where do we go? The farm sounds like a good idea, I also have family in Triviela. What do you guys think?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK



Image
Image
"I was once told a story as a child that a Demon fell in love with an Angel. The story ended with the Demon's soul becoming purified by the Angel's love and the two were able to live together as one... I know it was just a tale of fantasy, a children's bedtime story... but could such a concept truly become a reality?"




The Capitol City of Cre' Est


Linde listened to each reaction which came one after another, and she nodded her head once Ace had spoken.

"I have to agree. After what has happened here the best possible place for us to be in is a quiet location that doesn't see much activity. Te'i Sai and Roda Ah K'mht are both organizations with plans for this continent, and they will be taking the majority of their resources and operatives to places of high activity such as the city of Cre' Est as we saw today."

She looked back at Hadrian and offer a bow of her head.

"My lord, I would request that you remain close by my side until we reach this farm. I understand that you wish to replace your bloodied clothing, but the longer we remain in this city the more risk we place on everyone in this group, yourself included. Roda Ah K'mht will not leave this place alone for long if they were willing to kill all of these people in cold blood. It's obvious they have plans for the city itself, and I dread to find out what those plans are. The best thing we can do right now is to move, and I promise that the first city or town we arrive at along our way I will personally accompany you to purchase new clothing."

She turned and looked to the others.

"Well then, let's be off without further delay." She said as she looked to Aliana.

"Please lead the way and we will follow."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

To Aliana's disgust the noble-looking man marched across to join them. It was without invitation that he pushed his way into the group. His presence was imposing and she could tell that the moment he opened his mouth she would find his words distasteful. True enough, the moment he spoke she found herself frowning in revulsion, narrowing her eyes in dislike. Ali was not a peasant. But neither was she of noble birth. In the agricultural world her family were high in the ranks, but she had never spoken the way this man did. He spoke so lowly of lesser men. She knew in an instant that she would never show this man any respect. It was her prophecy to judge a man on how he treated his inferiors, not his equals. And this man might never earn her respect if he didn't buck up his ideas. Many of the others in the group looked outraged, one of the pair even bursting out in livid anger. Much to her surprise though, the doctor-like woman struck up a proposal. How could she? After all that had been said by this man, she was offering protection? Ali's gratitude from previous events evaporated quickly and regarded the woman coolly, an eyebrow arched in silent questioning. Then the man began to speak again:

“You are all forgiven. I understand we are all a bit shaken after the recent events."

At this, Ali had to physically bite her tongue to stop herself from retorting furiously. She did not recall asking for this fool's forgiveness, nor would she. But his pompous attitude dictated that they were all lower in rank than he was, which many of them were. The constant reminder, however, was not endearing. It certainly was not gaining him many friends within the group. Besides the doctor-woman, all of them were regarding him with stony expressions.

"Well then, let's be off without further delay. Please lead the way and we will follow."

Ali's eyes flickered to the woman. With a slight nod, she strode away from the group, into the light. Dust kicked up around her feet and swirled around them as she turned and faced them. "I will take you to the safety of my home, then we can decide upon a plan where it's safe. I want to check upon my family as well." Jerking her chin upwards, she met every eye. Lastly her eyes fell on Hadrian and narrowed slightly. "I do not seek your forgiveness, nor should you assume I do. I am taking you to my home, so you shall show some respect. Sir." The last word was dripping with sarcasm as she dipped into a low, fake curtsy. When she straightened up she tucked her hair over one shoulder. "We are all equals here now."

Without another word, she turned and strode across the wide courtyard which was stained with the blood. Bodies lay strewn everywhere and Ali had to try hard to stop herself from gagging. The sight was a sickening one. But she kept her head up and led the way towards the edge of the town. She didn't speak, she didn't turn to the others and she didn't slow down, but kept a steady pace. She wound through the town, until they were on the very edge. Her farm was only a little way out.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Kaska Dalcata Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK

Truth be told, Hadrian had been slightly disappointed that Zelic had interfered. It would have been a fine test for the skills of his new bodyguard. Nevertheless, he was sure a new opportunity would arise soon enough. These people seemed just as rash as the average peasant and unable to control their temper. Under normal circumstances he would have seen to the permanent removal of the offending finger, but he was still feeling benevolent. Someone should teach the girl to shut up when adults were talking though.

“Your apologies are accepted Zelic,” Hadrian spoke before turning to Ace, misinterpreting the man’s comment:
“Oh, I agree. Staying out of her way is on the top of my list. She reminds me too much of my wife and the only thing my wife has ever given me, apart from children, is a headache. Sometimes women can be such a handful,” his lips arched up he seemed to have found a kindred soul. Maybe he had a horrible wife as well. At least his current predicament wasn’t as bad as living under one roof with his wife. Still, that could change if all these assassins kept hounding him. He was pleased when he saw many agreed with the plan of going to the farm. When Linde mentioned the clothing he sighed slightly. It was disappointing he’d have to wait for new clothes, but you couldn’t argue with common sense. A new outfit would hardly be of any use if an assassin slit his neck afterwards, ruining his clothes once more.

“I suppose you are right, we all have to make sacrifices and it seems no more than fitting that the broadest shoulders carry the greatest burdens,” he straightened, ready to depart, but froze when Aliana made eye-contact. He was nothing short of amazed, another impertinent woman. It seemed his destiny to stumble across those witches wherever he went. Either that or someone had put a most horrendous curse on him, but he couldn't imagine anyone he had offended to warrant something like this. No one deserved a fate so cruel. As Aliana turned and strode away, Hadrian raised his voice slightly, deciding he could not let these brazen claims go unanswered. If left unchallenged, it would only give other women the wrong idea. It was his moral obligation to defend the cornerstones of a civilized nation.

“I will show respect, I am after all a nobleman from Veilbrand. As far as equality goes, I'm afraid you ask the impossible. A shrub does not ask the mighty oak to shrink. A shrub accepts that the oak receives more sun, for the oak is larger and worthier of admiration. God made me who I am with a reason. It would be nothing short of disrespectful and sacrilegious to try to lower myself to the level of a commoner," he concluded with an indignant frown on his face.

This was an odd group here; it was difficult to control them. They lacked the servility of the commoners on his estate. He gave everyone a careful glance, wondering whether Ace’s comment had actually been supportive, or a hidden sneer. The man was a noble, but Hadrian knew little of him. Even among the nobility you could find people with odd views. At least Linde seemed dedicated, unless it was some form of subtle mockery. He shook his head at the notion. He could rely on her; commoners lacked the subtlety for such an elaborate deceit.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linde Character Portrait: Hadrian Kirkegard Character Portrait: Sina Maliq Character Portrait: Zelic Maliq Character Portrait: Aliana Duirk Character Portrait: Ace Hieron
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

Footnotes

Add Footnote »

INK



Image
Image
"I was once told a story as a child that a Demon fell in love with an Angel. The story ended with the Demon's soul becoming purified by the Angel's love and the two were able to live together as one... I know it was just a tale of fantasy, a children's bedtime story... but could such a concept truly become a reality?"




The group began leaving the wretched scene in the city and that suited Linde just fine. While she grew accustomed to such carnage when in the presence of the Red-Eyed Demon, it was still hard to fathom that there were people who wished for this kind of death and destruction. It was an ugly thing, not something beautiful to be admired. How one human being, or many, could possibly think that such an act was justified was beyond her ability to understand. She had always thought that life was beautiful, and that death was part of life but not something to be fast tracked in this way.

She remained silent for most of the walk through the countryside beyond the city walls, but occasionally sang a soft melody. The singing was more for her own sake, as it helped to settle her nerves and calm her mind. Her voice was pure, milky and angelic. To her she was simply singing, but to some who listened it was more than that. Though Linde didn't know it, she had a way of affecting others around her with her voice and charms. Even the Red-Eyed Demon himself had acknowledged this effect, though he didn't tell her of it. The Red-Eyed Demon was not a Demon in Linde's eyes, but he did have a somewhat relentless and merciless streak about him which he had used on her before. When he wanted her to do something, such as locate a target for him, she was to comply or face the consequences. Usually, when she was done, he would give her props and then vanish.

She didn't mind though.

It took about fifteen minutes of walking, but the farm finally came into view and Linde was one of the first to set foot on the grounds given that she'd taken up the body guard position for Hadrian. She inspected the grounds very carefully with her eyes to make sure that nothing was out of place, as even a single bent blade of grass could sometimes spell trouble if you overlooked it. Perhaps a bit paranoid, but it had kept her alive so far. When she was certain it was clear she looked back and waved to the others to approach. She herself decided it was best to let the girl who led them here to go first though.