Snippet #2789529

located in Caelen, a part of Assassin's Pledge: Revolution, one of the many universes on RPG.

Caelen

The Town of Caelen

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Character Portrait: Kyero
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Town of Caelen, Veilbrand

3 Days Later...


In the center of Veilbrand extended a long and spindly arm from the Central Mountain Range grasping for the center of the nation. The end of this range branched into five distinct “Fingers,” and thus this region became known as Lemnia’s Hand. And at the tip of her thumb rested a town known as Caelen.

Whispers in the underground were that the Revolution housed a safe house here, which made it a prime target for Egruus to attack. In fact, his forces were already on their way. 400 strong, and armed to the teeth, ready for war.

Kyero slowly entered the city, leaning on his walking stick sporting that limp (which he’d grown rather fond of in an odd way). Silence seemed to track him as he moved through the streets. Conversation halted as he grew closer, and resumed once he had passed. He could feel the eyes following him every step of the way. And even to Kyero this level of caution and wariness seemed excessive. Then again, the town was officially under attack. It just hadn’t arrived yet.

Kyero paused as he neared a fountain in what he presumed was the town’s central market space, and sat down on a bench. Taking a breath and listening carefully, he managed to pick out through the chatter around him that Egruus’ men were only two days away.

Not a lot of time at all, he thought.

Continuing his eavesdropping, he also heard from another conversation that local businesses were packing up and beginning to leave the town for the sake and safety of their businesses. Two days was a long time to go without income in a nation as impoverished as this one. But after hearing about what Egruus’ men did in Orktusk, Kyero couldn’t blame them. An unconfirmed rumor burnt a village and half its people to the ground. So what kind of horrors did they have planned for a town nearly eight times the size of Orktusk?

Kyero didn’t dare guess. But what he did dare was to call out to a group passing by.

”Hoi, there. May I inquire directions to the local pub? I’m rather parched after my recent journey.”

The group murmured amongst themselves a moment before one of them came forward.

“Hoi, stranger. The pub is down the main road to your left. But it might be closed, so don’t get your hopes up too high.”

”Many thanks. But if I may, what seems to be the big concern around here? Everyone seems worried about something.”

“You haven’t heard? Egruus has sent a four hundred man detachment to this town because of the rumors about the Revolution being here. Most of us are preparing to leave the city before they get here. Hence the warning about the pub.”

”Oh dear. That’s quite a shock. He’d attack this place over a rumor?”

“He’s attacked other locations for even less. Mae’da, Jilthran, and Atluum just to name a few cities were all attacked because they were close to where rumors of the Revolution’s presence were being spread. None of them ever confirmed either. He attacked just because.”

”Dear, oh dear. Sounds like he’s quite desperate to stop the Revolution.”

“Ha! He is. He’s a coward, and the Revolution, thanks to the Maiden leading them, has been kicking his arse all over Veiblrand for the last several years! One day soon we’ll all be free of him. But for now, we have to stay ahead of his rampage. So if you’ll excuse us, stranger. Good luck with the pub.”

Kyero waved to the group as they departed, and headed down the dirt road to the pub by listening for tells as to where he was by the way people spoke, how they walked, and what they were talking about. Finally, he stopped and asked a young man where the pub was, and was told he’d passed it about a block back. After receiving direction and guidance, Kyero made it to his destination and walked up to the door.

Knock, knock.

”Hello? Is anyone in there?”

Silence.

”Hoi, in there! I’ve got coin if you’ve time to sell a drink or two!”

Silence... Followed by the soft pitter patter of footsteps. The lock clicked and he was quickly ushered inside. Even with eyes closed and his bandanna covering them he could feel it had gotten much darker. All light sources had been extinguished, and it seemed like the windows had their blinds fully closed. That, or they had been boarded. One of the two.

“Hoi, there. What can I do ya fer stranger?”

Kyero leaned over the counter and slid a single Silver coin across the wooden surface.

”Ale, please.”

“Comin’ up. One sec, there.”

The pub master disappeared into the back room, and returned a minute later.

“There ye are.”

”My thanks.”

Kyero took the cup in hand and turned it around so the handle was facing the pub master, who arched an eyebrow. But as Kyero removed a Gold coin from a pouch at his waist, the pub master understood what was happening as Kyero set the coin down and kept it pressed under his fingertips.

”I don’t suppose the whispers of the Revolution’s presence here in Caelen are true, by chance?”

“Not that I’ve heard, there. Best I got fer ye is that rumors are all Egruus needs these days ta send his men a runnin’.”

The pub master reached for the coin, putting his fingertips on the exposed surface that Kyero left. But as he tried to slide it towards himself, the coin didn’t move.

”I heard a shift in your voice between the first phrase and the second. One was true. The other, a lie. For another Gold coin, tell me which was which.” He said, holding a second coin in his other hand up off the counter.

The pub master looked at all the windows and the door, making sure no shadows could be seen beneath it. He leaned in closer and tapped the back of Kyero’s shoulder to make him lean in closer as well.

“I told ya the truth when I said I rumors are all he needs.” He whispered.

Kyero slid the second coin on top of the first, but kept both pressed beneath his fingertips as he brought out a third coin, holding it aloft like before.

”Three if you tell me where I’m most likely to find information regarding where I can find the Revolution...” He leaned a bit closer, sliding the coin beneath his fingertips on the counter. ”And double it all... If you give me a name.”

The pub master gulped down a lump in his throat as a bead of sweat gently dripped down his temple. He looked at the gold under Kyero’s fingers, then to his own hand which was currently missing half a pinky. Memories of Egruus’ soldiers coming through and lopping it off after questioning him about this exact topic flashed through his mind before he swallowed again. Taking in a deep breath, he glanced to the drink Kyero had offered him.

“Illiaster San’Tor... That’s who ya wanna find. He wanders the North district during every day when there’s gonna be a full moon.” He said at last, grabbing the drink and chugging it as a smile slowly spread on Kyero’s lips.

”Why full moon nights?”

“Fuck if I know, lad. That’s all I got fer ya.”

Kyero slowly slid his fingers off the coins, allowing the pub master to take them. He then handed the man three more Gold coins from his pouch, all of which the pub master quickly pulled in. Checking their quality, he then shoved them into a small, personal safe box.

“Pleasure doin’ business with ya, lad. You watch yer back, ya hear me? It’s real easy ta lose coin in these parts these days.”

”I’ll keep that in mind.”

With that, Kyero left the pub in silence. Once outside, he stood in the middle of the street as he considered the man’s words.

The full moon isn’t for another six days...

Kyero turned his head slightly as a family passed by.

“Why are we moving, mommy?” A little girl asked.

“We’re just going on a little vacation to stay with mommy’s sister in the next town over, sweet heart.”

“But I didn’t get to grab my teddy bear!”

“I’m sorry, sweetie. I’ll buy a new one for you when we get there, okay?”

“No! I want my teddy bear!”

“I-ugh... Dear? Can you please?”

The husband picked her up.

“Come on now, kiddo. Behave yourself. It was just a bear, and we’ll get you a bigger one okay?”

“Promise?”

“Promise.”

“Kay.”

Kyero took a deep breath as he flashed back to the conversation with Drake. He didn’t need to say anything, but the phrase “the things they did to them...” stuck out in Kyero’s mind as his hands gripped more tightly to his walking stick.

Not this time, Egruus. He thought as his lips tightened.

With a single stamp of the stick into the ground, Kyero set off down the main road leading out of the city.

”Four hundred against one...” He said with a confident smile. ”I like those odds.”