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located in The Skycity of Revelation, a part of Revelation: The Cure, one of the many universes on RPG.

The Skycity of Revelation

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The Assassins' Guild

Loki could only barely give Eos credit for trying, though she had to admit his talent for understatement rivaled anything she’d ever heard. One of her sable-colored sleeves was charred beyond all recognition and the flames had definitely singed off a few hairs on the same side. She still had reddened skin where there had once been a third-degree burn, and she’d managed to get quite a bit of blood on her clothes (which was now beginning to dry), and she looked a bit under the weather. That was a lie, and they both knew it. She smiled wryly and shook her head.

“You don’t have to try making small talk, Eos, I hate it almost as much as you do.” She rolled her eyes pointedly; they both knew that half her life was spent in such meaningless conversations. There were very few people she actually enjoyed talking to for one reason or another, and though the blunt, often vulgar assassin was one of them (for the entertainment value if nothing else), she didn’t expect him to do so all the time.

The carriage ride was mercifully short, and spared her the indignity of being publicly visible, which was an excellent idea as far as she was concerned, and in short order the two were within the Guild. Loki nodded when the former Hand excused himself, and stepped into Amon’s office. Their meeting took close to an hour, after which she retrieved Zade and left in much the same fashion as she’d come, but not before stopping to ask Pandora to stop by Caelin’s at some point in the future and ward his home, for which she would obviously be well-compensated. “If you could… be extra-careful about Siri’s room, would you?” She would not deny a measure of affection for her little cousin, and unlike Caelin, he was not able to defend himself.




The Next Morning, Streets of Revelation

Sometimes, Aram wondered why Ishtar had married him. The two seemed to butt heads on just about every issue, and she was currently not speaking to him over what he was about to do. Make no mistake; his wife was of singular importance to him, but sometimes, one had to take drastic measures that risked what was personally important for the sake of that which was universally so.

It wasn’t an easy decision to make. Part of him had always hoped that eventually, the government would see sense. He was not as misinformed as many of his compatriots; he knew there were those among the upper class who attempted to make reform, but he also knew that they had accomplished next to nothing. He made no attempt to enlighten his fellows. To introduce that knowledge would be to introduce doubt into their minds that what was needed was a complete revolution, and right now, he couldn’t have them entertaining doubts. Not anymore.

Up until this point, the revolution’s actions had been little but small skirmishes with the city guard, incidents of vandalism, and always in small groups. It was so underscaled that very few people were even aware that there was a rebellion, and that had to change. Nobody was going to take them seriously unless they did something significant. He’d received word that, independent of his own direction, two of his people had undertaken an attempt to kill Caelin Taylor yesterday, and he knew exactly why. The man was known to have received a dose of the Cure, but frankly Aram himself thought it a little misdirected. Just because one had taken the stuff did not mean one was hoarding it, but he supposed in the end it made little difference. One member of Parliament less wouldn’t hurt his cause much, not when he was intent on removing all opportunities for compromise. Either the mages would have everything everyone else had, or they would all die and take half the city with them.

It was frustratingly difficult to make some of them see this. But surely, after today, nobody would have any choice but to choose a side. And if not today, then eventually. Soon, even.

It was time. With a gesture to his men, Aram headed for Beta. He and his were making no attempt to hide their presence; stealth would only be detrimental right now. Instead, they marched as a grim promenade, stony-faced sentinels over the slums, a people oppressed for far too long, who had finally realized that their teeth were perfectly suited for ripping into the underbelly of their tormentors. Predators, held captive for so long by mere prey that they had forgotten their own natures. No more.

The eerily-silent, but fully-visible parade marched through the streets of Gamma, and Aram noted with satisfaction the number of grimy windows that opened, occupants peering outside at what had to be the strangest thing many of them had ever seen. These people though were still close enough to the worst to know what was going on, and while several shut tight and locked their homes, others- magical or not, joined the march, trailing along behind the mages or walking beside them, and Aram’s ranks swelled from but fifteen men to a good fifty.

And still, none broke the stern moratorium on noise, the only sounds the thudding of boots or the slapping of bare feet on cobblestone, the clinking of metal here and there from the new additions, inexorable, steady, constant.

Their destination, the barracks of the City Guard, was a building wedged between the Blacksmith’s guild and a small inn on the other side. The guards, apparently alerted to their ghostly coming, were all milling around outside, watching them with wary eyes. The march swiftly became a standoff; such rabble as they were not welcome here, but nor were they prohibited by law. It was the strictest of social convention, but there was no real power in it if one refused, as Aram did, to be cowed by harsh, condescending looks and scornful cold shoulders.

In the end, nobody would have much of a read on how long it took for something in the air to change, but (and this was to Aram of paramount importance) it was a guardsman who lost it first, the tense silence and deliberate invasion of his space becoming too much for that soldier’s discipline he was supposed to have, and first blood was theirs.

After that, pandemonium erupted. Each of the fourteen others Aram had brought with him was a combat specialist, and bitterly resentful of his or her lot in life. Even as reinforcements poured out of the barracks, Aram’s troops fell back, slinging magic from a distance while those who had joined in Delta and Gamma occupied the forefront. It was Aram himself who set fire to the barracks, and it would soon spread to both the guild building next door and the inn. Let it. This whole city deserves to burn.



The Assassins' Guild

When the march had passed an entirely different Guild, Amon Gregory had observed it with a burgeoning sense of dread. No good would come of this, not for anyone. There was no mistaking the looks on those marchers’ faces: they were out for blood, and they would not be satisfied until they had it. It was an expression he worked daily to scrub out of his recruits.

Reacting immediately (for he had suspected something like this would happen eventually, just not so soon), he ascended the stairs to the student’s quarters, where Pandora was presently making use of a spare room. Knocking urgently, he spoke through the door. “Miss Elling, I require your assistance, if you would.” So saying, he waited as long as was needful for her to join him, then set about in pursuit of several of his own people. Not so many as to constitute a major force, but enough to survive if the march reached the end he thought it would.

He was unsure if Etzel remained within his walls, but if this was the case, Amon sought him particularly, offering no more or less explanation than he afforded the mage-woman. His last stop was Eos, and once he had about seven people in total gathered, he finally explained himself. “A group of mages and some disgruntled citizens just marched brazenly past our doors. It is not difficult to tell that they intend to attack something. I need you all to run interference in whatever way you can. Allow me to make something perfectly clear: you are not to choose one side over the other unless the selection is obvious. Rather, stop whatever it is that is about to happen, by any means necessary. Defend bystanders, treat the injured, talk down both sides if you can. But if it looks like someone will not stop until everyone else is dead, end him.” They could not afford for this incident, whatever it was about to be, to engulf the city any more than it already was going to. Containment was key.



The Royal Palace

Loki appended her signature to the end of a document approving extra funding for an independent Cure-production facility. It wasn’t as though she had to think about it too hard. The news yesterday of the gruesome death of Doctor Vanderbilt was only fuel on the fire, so to speak, especially since she had it on good authority that the man had wanted something similar himself. Her personal financing would allow for the construction of such a manufacturing line within either the grounds of the Taylor Chemicals building or alongside Giacomo’s air purifier, whichever the two decided on beside themselves.

Most of the time, she scarcely paid heed to the fact that she was the single most independently-wealthy woman in the city, but other time, she was glad of it. The next document was not nearly as easy to deal with, nor as appealing. Gilgamesh was calling a special meeting of Parliament, which unfortunately he could do as prime minister. It was set for that afternoon, and she wondered exactly what he was planning on doing. Calling the legislature meant that he was going to force a vote on something, and that meant he knew he had enough support to do it. She wasn’t sure why- the moderate faction had been increasing in number ever-so-slightly recently (and that was with no small effort on her part of Caelin’s), so he should actually be fearing that his own base was weakening. Maybe that was the point? He felt he had to act now, while there was still a chance he’d win? He certainly wouldn’t be one to roll over and die.

Which reminded her: due to a rather fortuitous arrangement of the day before (which she’d insisted upon attending once she learned of it), she was scheduled for tea with the Duchess Gilgamesh in about an hour. Loki smiled to herself: Amon was a sly dog when he wanted to be, and she had little doubt that Eos had relished in arranging this right under the nose of the Duke and his son. She didn’t know much of the younger Lord Gilgamesh; the Prime Minister’s progeny tended to keep out of the obvious realms of politics, which was probably wise.

Turning to Zade, who stood behind her, Loki reminded her of this much, and raised a black eyebrow. “Are you going to be fine with this? I know meeting nobility is not exactly your preference?” There was much more to it than that, of course, but she knew and Zade knew, and neither of them had explicitly ever discussed knowing. It was simply part of the nature of their arrangement- such things could be touched upon, danced around, and silently confirmed in the absence of denial, but they would not be explicitly talked-about. The princess didn’t mind.