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Zoe Spry

For the greater good...that's what I tell myself

0 · 458 views · located in Moderniterra

a character in “Hunt of the Bound”, as played by shmband


Name: Zoe Spry

Gender: Female

Age: 21

Role: Hunter

ImageAt 5'4" with a lean and lithe frame and naturally straight, bushy hair, Zoe is quite typical of her people. She has piercings and tattooes in keeping with the custom of her home land, and like the rest of her people she has naturally dark hair. This she dyes blonde, since a Tarshan priest once told her that this would stand as a reminder that she bears no guilt for her involvement in the blood-oath.

Personality: Zoe comes across as a person who's true personality has been scooped out or nullified. Truth of the matter is she was an average girl born into aquatic farming, who now adheres to practices which she deems necessary but at the same time she balks at in horror. She is always telling herself she is doing what she must, an in suppressing the instinctive abhorrence of it all she quells any real character she may have ever possessed. In short, she's a woman who is no longer comfortable in her own skin, and comes across as tense, hung-up and humourless. In reality, deep down there is a glimmer of something much more radiant and amiable. It's just that that 'person' in side of her has been buried deep enough not to see the life Zoe is now having to live.

Fears: Privation from the god's favour, the suffering of her people, but also being confronted by one of her own clansmen about the things she has been doing in recent years

Strengths: Her inherited trade means that she is a hard worker, an excellent swimmer and someone who isn't at all afraid to get wet or dirty in her daily tasks. Bad weather does not phase her in the slightest, and she is quite resilient to cold.

Weaknesses: Her diminuitive height sometimes confers a disadvantage, and her regional accent means that she she is often not taken seriously - and sometimes misunderstood - by the prouder denizens of Iris. Her mistress prefers to keep her out of 'public facing' service for this very reason.

History: Image Zoe was born and raised on the island of Renfrew, which is part of the western mainland state of Numidia. Her family were among the thousands of coastal farmers who cultivated medicinal herbs and fished for squid during the squids' breeding seasons. Since the age of four Zoe was spending much of her day wading around in muddy water and handling slimy, smelly produce, which is the reason she's not in the slighest bit squeamish.

However, one year, something changed. The squid didn't migrate south from Syra like they normally did. The local economony was devastated, and many people were either ruined or outright died of hunger. At the time it was uncertain whether the economy of Renfrew would recover from the disaster, and Zoe, along with her siblings, were sent onto the mainland to seek other work. Zoe simply trusted the wrong person, and was promised a lucrative opportunity up north in Tarsha, but this turned out to be sale into slavery.


However Zoe was a hard worker, and earned the favour of her mistress. What's more, she heard from the priests about their gods, and how they were appeased by the blood-oath. Noting that Tarsha was enjoying a time of plenty while her own people starves, Zoe concluded that this must be because of their devotion. For this reason, Zoe believes in and carries out the blood-oath. It doesn't feel right to kill an innocent victim, but she justifies it by remembering that to displease god could result is hundreds or thousands dying in a natural disaster, as had happened in her homelands. Therefore by trying to escape their fate, the 'bound' were potentially worse murderers than any of the hunters.

At least, that's what she keeps telling herself...there was an occassion where she was nearly punished and sacrified herself when one of her fellow hunters killed the bound they had caught together. Fortunately it turned out the killing was deliberate, and the other hunter incured the punishment instead, leaving Zoe safe. It does mean, though, that Zoe herself has felt the horror of being about to be sacrificed, which makes it even harder for her to distance herself emotionally from her victims.

So begins...

Zoe Spry's Story


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#, as written by shmband
The moist air hung close to the skin, stirred only by the heat of the sun above and the radiant warmth of the stones below. Zoe was gratefuly for the cold water that lapped against her legs as she stood not quite knee deep in one of the manor's tertiary cisterns. It was a part of the courtyard that was slightly shaded, not in immediate view of most of the property, and in any case was not somewhere anybody often visited. It was, after all, a drain.

Zoe allowed herself a wry smirk. Sure, the Tarshan's had a fairly sophisticated system for channeling waste water through their homes from the baths and kitchens, but considering the number of times they became blocked she had to wonder if an old fashioned bucket wasn''t simpler on the whole. Either way, it wasn't hers to worry about. There was a blocked water duct and Miss Edwards knew full well that Zoe would spend the least time complaining about having to poked around in the outlet for whatever the blockage was whilst standing in eighteen inches of grey water. She didn't see the problem herself. It's not like it was sewage (that came out of a different channel...which admittedly did also needed unblocking later and that was genuinely an unpleasant job...) and it was a wonderful way to keep cool in the hot Tarshan weather.

...just as it had been a welcome coolness to stand in the muddy waters among the rows of flaxenweed her uncle used to farm back on Renfrew, splashing your fingers as you pulled up the golden yellow stalks...

No. There as no point remiscing. She hadn't been given the choice to stay, and no good would have come of her staying anyway. All she had to worry about was getting the water from the kitchen and baths flowing again before one of the cooks inadvertendly flooded the place. Not that the task required any skill. She was literally poked around and into the opening in the stone wall with a long wooden pole. It just took a little more determination and impetuousness that some of the other slaves might have put into it.

"What's got you so excited Zoe?" an irritatingly familiar voice called out as a fellow slave, Flaavu, rounded the nearest corner from the front courtyard. "Found something tantilizingly squishy?"

Zoe narrowed her eyes and thinned her lips. Another squid reference....hilarious. She didn't dignify him by catching his eye but continued fishing around in the water flue.

"Nothing so far." she replied, "but come back later and I'll push this into the space between your ears, I daresay I'll find something squishy there."

Flaavu snickered obnoxiously. The portly man - perhaps two or three years older than Zoe, she had never had occassion to ask - strolled up closer. Didn't he have work of his own to do?

"You misunderstand Zoe," he said, "it's not the object between my ears that I intend to impress you with."

This time Zoe looked across at the man, her eyes narrowed practically to contemptful slits. "That scarcely heightens my expectations Flaavu."

"What? Oh wait of course...go on then, what revolting sea creature ought I slurp down to get your attention?"

Zoe huffed in amusement and shook her head. "Flaavu, there are not enough lazulis in the crespuscular sea for you to eat such that I would so much as share a bowl of soup with you.

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, as the saying goes, and by now Zoe was more than accustomed to dealing with the characatured version of her homeland's culture that she found parroted day by day in Iris. Unfortunately it seemed the the irritation imparted onto her by her fellow slaves goading was just what was needed to dislodge the unknown obstacle in the water chute, and by the time she had felt something at the far end of the pole give way she had already partly lost her balance, and had no time at all to avoid the sudden gush of cloudy water which cascaded from the hole in the wall. She managed to remain upright, but the surge of water itself caught her squarely enough to leave her utterly drenched from the shoulders down. The thunderous discharge gave way to the sound of Flaavu's hysterical laughter. Zoe chewed her lip and kept her gaze downwards.

"Well," Flaavu guffawed, "that certainly dampened your spirit! I suppose it's as well that you're wanted in the basement cell to light the fire. At least you'll be able to dry off down there."

Zoe looked up, her eyes widening and the edges of her mouth dropping a little. Sure, she knew what night it was. But the branding in particular was an act that made her skin crawl. And she was being given the job of stoking the fire which would sear the flesh of the bound. It wasn't a thought that gave her pleasure.

"So it is that time already?" she sighed, staring off, then looking back at Flaavu with a subtle smile. She strolled up to him and brusquely held out the wooden pole. "Since you were the one who gave me the message, I suppose you'll have to take over the job I was going to do next. You know where the sewage flue is."

Flaavu's face dropped and he snarled at Zoe, taking the pole with a grumble knowing full well that she was right. With a smirk she walked away from him and back into the building via one of the lesser used entrances. It was as well that nobody important saw her in her sodden state. Fortunately, the route to the basement cell was very much an out of the way one. It wasn't a place to which guests were normally treated a viewing...

When she got there she was confronted with the branding brazier. It was almost as though it hadn't been touched since the same time last year. The agonised screams of the victims being branded seemed to still reverberate from the walls. With a morose sigh, she pulled open a hatch and began loading some of the kindling unto the hearth.


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Character Portrait: Zoe Spry Character Portrait: Samuel Harrison
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Slavery is a funny thing. Your treated horribly, fed horribly, and people can't even bother to look at you like your a real person. But still, people with enough money spend large amounts of money on slaves, and treasured them dearly. Samuel chuckled as he thought about it, picking up a pail of water and lugging it along side him as he made his way through the giant hallways. He was to deposit these pails of water to each slave's room, to serve as a bath of a sort. He stopped at yet another room, placing the pail right outside the door before returning to collection of water he had downstairs.

If only they knew how much money they could save by doing all the work their selves. He thought to himself, an amused grin appearing on his face. Other slaves, who had long since lost all signs of emotion, gave him weird looks, but he simply ignored them and continued on his way. Halfway down the stairs, he heard somebody shout his name, piercing the silence that hung around him. He turned, an eyebrow making it's way up to his hairline, to see the slave that the mistress used for delivering news.

"Miss Edwards wants you to light the fire for the brands." The young slave announced, and with a bow he was off again. Samuel stifled a grimace and continued down the stairs. He wasn't a fan of the BloodOath ceremony , but he had to follow the traditions. He passed his buckets full of water, informing another slave to distribute them for him. He wasn't supposed to pass jobs along, but he wasn't about to leave them in the middle of the hallway and allow the mistress to punish him for not doing his job. He took yet another set of stairs down to the basement, his foot steps making soft thuds off of the stone steps as he went on in silence. When he finally got to the dingy door, he pushed it open and closed it again behind him. He saw another slave, whom's name he couldn't remember, but simply gave a hint of a smile to her before helping with the job of loading the fire with fire wood and the like. He then paused, and reached for the box of matches that sat on the mantle, easily pushing open the box and withdrawing a single match. He quickly struck it across the box, before tossing it into the fire. The kindling ate up the flame, and soon a warm fire was lighting every corner of the dark basement. Looking over at the slave, who he was pretty sure was named Zoe, he stood and brushed off the knees of his white pants.

"We should clean this place up. Seems like something Miss Edwards would want us to do." He said, his voice seeming to echo in the room even though he really spoke rather quietly. He said the mistress' name with extra force, the thought of the BloodOath ceremony making him hate the woman at the present. Normally, he wouldn't show such signs of displease, but he doubted the girl in front of him was going to rat him out. He managed to bring his mind back to cleaning the basement, and looked around. The room was pretty much bare, not baring any cleaning supplies. They were going to have to go upstairs and find some on their own. He eyed the girl out of her corner of his eye, trying to find some signs to see if she was the depressed and mopey kind, or one that still had some sort of hope left. He would have to find out on his own, apparently.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Zoe Spry Character Portrait: Samuel Harrison
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#, as written by shmband
The brazier was deceptively deep and broad, and the task of filling it with kindling proved to be a longer and more arduous one than Zoe had expected. So much so that she was starting to feel surprised that she had been sent to do it by herself. Time was ticking by after all.

Absentmindedly she began humming a traditional island folk song to herself. It wasn't that it evoked feelings of warmth and affection for her homeland, it served more as a reminder that whatever she might be called on to do was for the good of her people. To curry the favour of the god, this was clearly the root of the Tarshan's good fortune.

She took a deep breath. That was an easy thing to say. It hadn't been so easy to say in that dread moment when it seemed certain that it was her blood that would be spilled to appease the deity.

She realised she had slowed in her work, when her thoughts were interrupted by another person entering the room. She immediately leapt back into action, grabbing handfulls of dried wood and pushing them in amongst the coals. Aware of the newcomer joining in the task, she said nothing at first, but glanced up to see who her help was. She recognised him immediately. Samuel. She didn't know that much about him - slaves weren't afforded much chance for idle chit-chat after all - but she knew that he was born into all of this. What then, she wondered, was his own personal justification for taking part in the bloodoath? That he'd never known anything different? Or was it simply that he had not choice. Did Zoe herself even have a choice, having found justification for her actions?

"Clean..." she repeated after him, looking around. The place looked like it had scarcely been entered in a whole year. She wasn't sure how neat and tidy it was required to look given it's purpose...certainly the poor soul being branded wasn't going to care too much about cleanliness. But, as Samuel said, it was something 'Miss Edwards' would want.

"Yeah, we should." she said resolutely, turning and facing Samuel for a moment. She couldn't remember much about his involvement in previous bloodoaths. Perhaps that was a good thing. If he'd been there looming over her last year...this would have been a much more uncomfortable situation.

"Have we, er..." she began hesitantly, "...heard anything about whole will be taking the roles tonight?"