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Nellie Veld

"Everybeast has got a part in makin' this world better"

0 · 205 views · located in The Kingdom of Mercia

a character in “Jaguars and Thieves - Part 1”, as played by Krypt

Description

Name: Ellen "Nellie" Veld

Age: 19

Gender: Female

Breed: Cheetah

Type: Summer

Role: Tradesman's Apprentice


Personality: Nellie is hopeful. This firm belief in life's potential for goodness permeates all that she does. It was hope that brought her to Mercia, and it is hope that keeps her smiling when things are dark. Reserved around her betters, Nellie is otherwise a mildly mannered young cheetah who speaks in a warm alto among friends and remains polite around her acquaintances. She tends to have a somewhat idealistic view of life, although this has been somewhat tempered by the various encounters of her trade. She doesn't care for loud noises, having grown up in a relatively quiet homestead, and is not particularly fond of insects. If ever under stress, Nellie tends to draw back into herself rather than become confrontational, and sadness tends to be the first emotion she goes to if it is a choice between that and anger. She doesn't mind being around water, likes to sing when she is alone, and truly enjoys being around anyone who has read the same books that she has.


Physical Description: Like most cheetahs, Nellie is of middling height and slight frame. Starting with what one would likely first see, Nellie possesses a pair of dark amber eyes, framed by the black tear marks that trace the contour of her snout. Face lightly spotted, Nellie attempts to keep her features fresh and clean, despite her generally humble attire. Her whiskers are always neatly straightened, and the fur on the back of her neck meticulously flattened, despite the latter's tendency to flare up if she becomes disheveled. Her idle expression ranges from neutrally humble to a gentle smile, depending on the rank and familiarity of those around her.

Regarding her general attire, Nellie favors wearing a black boudice over a modest creamy top, the sleeves of which tend to be rolled up. Her skirts are seldom flashy, rarely diverting from a pale blue or a light green. Footwear is the only item of clothing she does not sacrifice to fashion, being unable to cope with the more stylish-but-impactable shoes that her peers tend to wear. Thankfully for the sensibilities of her and others, said shoes tend to stay well hidden beneath her ankle-length skirt. She prefers to wear dark leather boots, rarely anything with a heel. Topping off her everyday ensemble is a kerchief, generally worn as a bandana about her head to keep the sun off her ears.

Naturally, her outfit does vary somewhat according to the season and occasion, the former bringing out a gray woolen overcoat and the latter bringing out a singly feathered slanted hat if the happening if formal enough.


Skills: Nellie has several skills, some more practical than others. Aside from the sundry skills that a farm cheetah adapts as she grows up, Nellie is an excellent shot with a rifle, a decent cook, and pretty good with a needle. She also has pretty decent penmanship, which she and her parents are quite proud of.


History: Ellen Veld, or Nellie as she prefers to be called, grew up in the Mercian colony of Natia. An island far removed from the mainland, the fairly recent colonial holding of the kingdom is home to a small population of frontier families seeking opportunity in the wide open grasslands the island features. Nellie's parents emigrated from Mercia before she had been born, drawn by promises of cheap land to those who were willing to work. And work they did. Throughout Nellie's childhood, the Veld farmstead grew into a decent little operation, as she and her brothers and sisters farmed and ranched for their sustenance.

As she grew, Nellie was always fascinated by tales her parents told of the homeland. Mercia seemed a mystical place to her, a land of tradition and centuries-old splendor. Even more so, it offered the chance to do something more than farm for her daily pound of flesh. In Mercia she could do more. Always fascinated with books, Nellie fancied that she could become a successful writer, selling much more books than the limited population of Natia could possibly buy. Her parents, perhaps out of nostalgia for the homeland or perhaps out of a genuine belief that their daughter was made of the right stuff, encouraged this budding dream. And so, around the time of her eighteenth birthday, Nellie booked passage on a steamer heading for Mercia.

From the time she walked off the gangplank and into her new life, Nellie was in another world. She had left the world of grass, sky, and fields, to a world of stone, smoke, and industry. The busy port she landed in was a primary shipping hub, and the young cheetah was well out of her league on where to begin. She spent her first few days following the current of other immigrants to find work, but soon that the weaveries and other cloth factories that young females tended to gravitate to were distasteful. Unwilling to work in a factory and unable to find work as a writer, Nellie soon ran through her savings. Without enough coins to even cling in her pocket, Nellie was about to resign herself to go find work at the linen mill when she happened upon an advertisement in the newspaper. "Tradesman - Apprentice Wanted. Colonials Welcome." Intrigued by the latter phrase encouraging immigrants, normally a liability, and the prospect of doing something besides mindless industry, Nellie answered the advertisement. And that is when she met Mr. Kosovo.

(Photocredit: https://www.deviantart.com/fpanther/art ... -159484006)

So begins...

Nellie Veld's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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The Coup

"Bedrest."

The Verdict was final.

King Helios was quarantined to his room and not allowed to take a step away from his bed. It was the royal physician's command and it had to be followed, if the King intended on recovering that is.

In the face of such problems, the Queen had to step up. And step up she did. Much to the dismay of the Lords and Ladies of the court, most of whom hated her for her strange Northern ways. Yet, the one person in court Queen Mina was grateful for, was the lord of the Jaguars. He had helped her a lot in keeping the wrong noses away from the mere thought that the Kingdom of Mercia had a weak ruler. He was also supported strongly the People, something she should have been wary of if she had any idea what he actually was.

A Betrayor at heart, Lord Print Corvus, the lord of the Jaguars, walked into his King's bedchambers. On his face was a Cat's smile, as he sniffed at the cup of wine he held in his hands. "A fine wine you requested, my Lord."

On his bed, King Helios was sitting propped up against pillows, "Corvus, there you are my fellow. I was wondering what was taking that maid so long. Well, I suppose she just became another victim of your charms."
Corvus let out a small chuckle, "That she has."

As Corvus handed the cup of wine to his King, he couldn't help but twitch his tail in excitement. Something his King didn't notice, so occupied with guzzling his cup of forbidden wine, before Gods forbid, the Queen shows up to lecture him about his health. It wasn't long before he was at his last drop, that there was the sound of sliding metal. A sword being pulled from its scabbard.

*****

Prince Everett never knew his day would start with a frenzy of Guards approaching and detaining him and his brother, Prince Korso. It had been strange, and indeed, led the two to wonder about what happened.

"Maybe we have another pie thief on the loose," Everett suggested. A smirk on his face as he leaned back in his chair, balancing it on the back two legs dangerously.

His brother, Korso choked back his laughter, "Or maybe, Soren's Governess has gone crazy again and is trying to hold him hostage for the return of her sanity."

The two continued with their random suggestions of why they were locked up in the library, never once thinking something truly terrifying might have actually happened.

Hours later, they had given up their game and it was when Korso was arguing with the guards, that the doors boomed open. In walked Lord Corvus. At his back were Jaguar guards, not felines that Korso and Everett knew at all. It was odd. Lord Corvus never had permission to bring more than a handful of his own guards into the castle.

With a nod, Lord Corvus dismissed the guards that had been keeping the brothers detained.

Prince Korso's ears twitched, and the fur on his tail began to puff up. "What has happened?"

Everett stayed silent, a sick feeling began to creep through his fur. The Jaguars guards suddenly left the room and closed the doors behind them. Leaving the two Princes and the Jaguar alone.

"Prince Korso, I offer you my sincerest condolences. It appears, your father has been murdered." Lord Corvus bowed his head in what looked like sadness, but instead of turning to lead them to their mother, he didn't move.

At first Everett was confused. His father, dead? It shouldn't have been a surprise if it had been because of his illness, but by murder? Why? And by who?

"Who? Who killed him?!" Korso growled, his hands balling up into fists as he stepped forward.

Lord Corvus lifted his head and Everett hissed in apprehension. The Jaguar Lord was smiling, his eyes were black orbs that had just locked onto his brother, Korso. "You. You killed your father."

Shock filled Everett, followed by automatic rejection. His brother would never ever condone the act of patricide much less enact it. What was going on? Who would accuse his brother of such a thing?

Immediately, his thoughts were answered when Lord Corvus pulled out a blade, and launched himself at Korso. He missed.

Korso had jumped backwards just in time to avoid being gutted, and in the seconds following the movement, both jaguar and tiger paused to share a look. It was wrong. Everything went wrong after that.

*****

"Just go."

"Not on your life."

"I'm not going to survive, Rhett. Look at me."

"I'm not leaving you to die."

"But you have to."

*****

Everett was alone.

His brother was dead.

*****

Nellie shuffled her paws, standing somewhat uncomfortably in the anteroom of the palace. It was the only room an everyday May like herself could get into in the palace, but there had been a fair share of blue blood that had strutted through already. Memories of nights spent memorizing the correct titles and salutations to address those of rank had swirled through her mind as those of high birth entered and left. Of course, she would only have to worry about saying "Your Grace," or "You Excellency," if she was addressed, which hadn't happened yet. The gentry certainly had more on their mind than paying heed to the cheetah who could just pass off in middle class eveningwear that happened to be in the corridor between the study and the drawing room.

Mr. Kosovo was taking too long. He had said if she came with him to the palace, she could have the evening off tomorrow. HMS Elemede was coming in to port tomorrow, and Nellie wanted to be there when the fine sailors were walking the town. She'd love to hear about where those sea cats have been. Aranor? Vixon? Far off Nigerius? Perhaps one of them ha been to Natia. It'd be fun to pick the brain of an outsider's perspective on her homeland. Perhaps one of them would ask her to dance. Heavens knew those Dukes walking by with their stiff collars wouldn't.

What was taking that leopard so long? The consultation was supposed to be the shortest part of the exchange. All the research and work that had gone into determining the state of the palace's guard retinue, THAT had been the time consuming part. The recommendation to her Highness the Queen was supposed to quick, clean, and concise.

There was a disturbance coming from behind the heavy hardwood doors leading into the court. Nellie stained her ears. It was all she could do, it's not like she could go press her head against the door. It would bend the brim of her hat. And, well, the two guards standing on either side of the portal probably wouldn't fancy the move. It sounded physical, whatever it was. Not just another shouting match about some estate or other's taxation. Well, the soldiery withing the walls should be more than able to take care of it. The Tradesman's analysis on the palace security had determined it was more than adequete. Indeed, that had gone over the background of every sentry, save that small band of mercenaries one of the lords like to haul around. What had been his name? Corvus? There were far too many titled to keep track of.

Nellie rubbed the pads of her paws together. Fine, everything was fine. Mr. Kosovo would be along any moment. They could leave this world of pomp and prestige and get back to the station. That had a train to catch after all. Everything would be fine.

*****

Everett panted silently, leaning his large frame against the brick wall. The blood on his paws and shoulder felt heavy, like it was mentally dragging him down. He tried not to think about it. About everything. Right now, he needed to run. Especially right now. Behind him, the sounds of paws softly scuffling against pebbles made his ears go up. They were closing in on him.

He inhaled sharply, and turned to dash forward. If he was correct in where he was going, he would hit the painting door soon and- "Yowch!"

He had run straight into it, so occupied with the sounds behind him that he hadn't noticed how close it was. And instead of just running into it and bouncing off of it, he slammed into it just hard enough that it swung open, allowing him to roll into the general anteroom for the lords and ladies. Aside from having rolled paws over ears like a silly cub out of a painting, he wasn't alone.

He jumped right up to hiss at the stranger. A female cheetah. Was she a guard? Did she want him dead like Corvus? He glared.


______


Jana wandered the streets, looking for action.

Action didn't necessarily have to be obvious. A mugging in an alleyway was the same as two lovers in a shouting fit. All were conflicts, but each was different. Jana just collected the information so she could sell it later. It was just something that she could do to make money. She had other ways, of course, but this way was the most subtle - and thus, the most safe.

As the wolf leaned against the wall of some delerict building, she overheard two peasants talking. Making sure she wasn't seen, she moved a bit closer to hear what the cats were saying.

"... believe me, that's what I saw," one of the women said.

"Really, how could such a barbaric Notherner still be Queen," said the second cat as she set down a barrel of pickles.

"Yes, I know. Everyone's still surprised she's here."

"Right! But it's a darn good thing Lord Corvus can keep her in line when the King is so sick."

"I don't doubt the competency of our system, but maybe Lord Corvus should have been appointed Prime Minister."

"Agreed. Sure, the Queen is politically savvy, but how often have you seen her down here among us commoners and not using the Nobles as her playthings..."

"I'm sure it will work out, dear. The system and nobles will keep her and her wild cubs in check."

"Yes, they are honorable people. They'd never betray us."

"Do not forget about King Helios. He will certainly..."

But at that point, Jana had stopped listening, and darted away. The people were unhappy with the Queen handling the affairs of the country? Where was the King? No doubt he was still sick in bed. But why would such an ill fitted Queen still be alive with so many enemies? Maybe Lord Corvus was keeping the mercenaries at bay, but how and why? Wasn't there a rumor that he was the most ambitious cat alive?

In any case, Jana was very curious. However, she couldn't just go sauntering into the palace. For one, she was an urchin, which complicated matters for her. For another, she was a wolf, which complicated matters even more. She'd have to find a way to get more information without going to the actual site. For now, she walked along the alleyway, kicking up dust and litter as she walked among moaning beggars and leering thugs of her home.

*****

To say Nellie was startled at the sudden appearance of the prone, bloodied Prince Everett, would be an understatement. The loud sound behind her had the feline instinctively reaching for a non-existant weapon (clearly she had to disarm before entering the palace) before making a quick turn to face the stranger.

"Yu-your grace! Er, no, uh, HIGHNESS!" Nellie stuttered out, so surprised by his appearance that she ended up missing the prince's title initially by an entire magnitude of rank. Stupid mistake. She had never actually seen any of the royal family in the flesh, and only recognized him from the various likenesses of him and his brothers that were spread across the kingdom. Comparing the image of him from a poster to how she saw him in reality was somewhat surreal.

Normally reasonably quick on her paws, Nellie was clueless on how she was supposed to act. Was she supposed to help the prince up? Mabye she was supposed to go run for help? Or perhaps she should just pretend that she hadn't seen anything, and not speak unless spoken to. Maybe the prince was drunk. But how would even a plastered panther wouldn't get this bloodied. Could this be connected to the scuffle she had been hearing on the other side of the door?

Then he jumped and hissed at her. By the claw, did that count as being addressed? Was she being challenged to a duel? She fumbled through what could pass off as a reply.

"Uh-uh, Ellen Veld, Tradesbeast Second Class, s-sah. Er, your highness." she said pathetically, complete with a passably-performed curtsy. It was a stupid response. The cadet prince hardly cared what her name was. But its not like she could just hiss back. She took a step back, almost reflexivly looking at the sentries at the courtroom door behind her for support.

*****

Everett withdrew his immediate aggression and remembering that he was a prince, got back onto his legs like a normal feline and coughed, "My apologies."

It was then that he saw movement in the corner of his vision. The sentries at the door had moved to drop their pointed spears in his direction. "S-Sir, s-st-stand down. Maybe we s-settle things peacefully."

He stepped backwards, groaning with the pain of having to move his right shoulder. "I didn't do anything!"

The denial didnt seem to help, but it did give him a second to lunge forward to grab Ellie Veld by the forearm. He used her like a shield for a second, but when the sentries stepped forward, he decided to turn and run. Being dragged behind him was Ellie.

The thudding of sentries following behind him was loud in his head. It left little reason for him to use.
All that he could do was run.

Behind him the sentries followed at a distance, thinking that he may kill the civilian should he decide that he could run no longer. That is until the Prince turned a corner and when they followed after him, he and the civilian were nowhere to be seen. The two doors ahead were closed. Which way had he gone?

Through the right door, still running quite fiercely, Everett ran through another door and the bright light of the sun welcomed them. Everett and Ellie were now on the outside walkway that ran atop the outer guard wall. It was also closest to the southern market down below, where the most commoners were.

Behind the Prince and Tradesman, the doors slammed open and the sentries were followed by guards. That said, it was also the same for the door in front of Everett. He stopped and backed away, using Ellie was a shield yet again. "Stay away!"

Both sides moved forward. Everett was trapped.

He pressed his back against the stone railings, and when the guards started to make way for a yellowed and black cat, he hissed. He couldn't let Corvus see him again. In his his arms, the cheetah didn't seem to make any sense of what was going on. What an obedient hostage. Or a savior. He ducked to whisper to her, "I'm sorry."
With a sudden movement, he was atop the rails with Ellie in his arms. He stepped backwards into nothing.

They fell.

The feeling of cool air ran through his fur and he released Ellie as they free fell. In his head and spine, the need to right himself so that he could control his landing was very strong. But as soon as he attempted to, the arrow in his shoulder broke. Pain flooded him and he was too late. He hit the corner of a wood stall and twirled to slam into a stay of straw hay. It didn't seem to soften his landing at all, but at least he was still breathing, barely. And unconscious.
Nearby, the Cheetah and Tradesman Apprentice, landed in a pile of straw hay. She was unhurt, say for a sore paw. It really was a miracle. Wasn't it?

A few feet away, was the outsider wolf, Jana.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie rolled painfully as she tried to account for all of her limbs. Well, at least none of them were missing. It had been a long time since she had jumped into a pile of hay, and never from that height. She forced herself into a sitting position, sliding down the stack as she kept her left arm braced against her chest. Must have twisted something.

What had just happened? Nellie was so busy being shocked by the whirlwind of events that anger hadn't had time to seep into her mind's stage. Now a particularly strong flavor of annoyance overtook her. The prince had just treated her as some sort of rag doll, dragging her out of the palace and throwing her off a bridge! So what if he said he was "sorry"? That was like the cliché tradebeast saying, "it's nothing personal," right before they pull the barker's trigger. It doesn't mean a whole lot in the context of the action. From what she could tell, the prince must do these idiotic things quite often, for it seemed like the guards were trying to stop him from doing it again. At least this silly cadet wasn't the heir to the throne!

Nellie resolved to get out of here. She could hear shouting from the bridge above. Probably the sentries just making bets whether their loony prince bit the dust this time. The cheetah half considered waiting around for the guards to come retrieve their royal oaf just so that she could receive an apology from one of them. His Highness the Prince certainly wasn't going to give her one. In the end, she resolved just to head back to the station. She could complain about it to Mr. Kosovo on the train ride back. Whenever he chose showed up, that was.

Brushing herself off with her good arm, the cheetah turned to leave. She couldn't resist making a snarky comment to a nearby shewolf, a rather uncharacteristic move of her. But then again, she had just had a very uncharacteristic experience. "'opefully that ain't a family passtime, eh? Otherwise we'll be runnin' shorta royalty soon."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Jana was walking along a sidewalk, ignoring the stares of random passersby. Screw them and their holier-than-thou attitude, besides. She had an idea.
Exposing the new king of Mercia as a fraud would probably get her a lot of coin, and also do a lot of good for the common folk. Who knows? Maybe they'd actually drop their foreign policy once they found out a foreigner had saved their country from tyranny. Unfortunately, that would be harder now that the king had begun to gain popularity, spouting propaganda about the royal family. Honestly, it just went to show how stupid people were. Would they really favor the guy who showed up on the throne mysteriously over the people they had trusted for a long time? It didn't make sense, either. The queen was well-known as a kind if stern woman, a woman who had loved her husband for many years. And as the second son - well, she'd never met him personally, but word on the street spoke of how he didn't have one hard-working bone in his body. It couldn't have been either of them.
So how had Corvus convinced everyone of the contrary?
The she-wolf's thought process was interrupted, however, as two figures landed roughly in a wagon of hay nearby. Two heads popped out of the pile. One was that of a cheetah Jana didn't recognize, and the other...
"Well, speak of the devilfish," Jana though aloud. Prince Everett Thane himself, in the flesh.
The cheetah turned to her. "'opefully that ain't a family passtime, eh? Otherwise we'll be runnin' shorta royalty soon," she called snarkishly in a thick rural accent. "Please. As if they aren't already losing enough members," the she-wolf called back.
Suddenly, she heard shouts. Jana's hooded head snapped up to see sentries standing from an above ledge. With a start, Jana realized she had somehow wandered right up to the palace itself.
"Shit," she said. Then she turned to the two in the hay loft. "Okay kids, time to haul ass and run if you don't want to be imprisoned by some insane tyrant! Come on, let's bounce!" Jana began to run, not particularly caring if the two others followed.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie, already three paces away from the site of impact, was more than a little surprised by the violent reaction of the passing wolf. She knew wolves were supposed to be aggressive, but this was a little much. Perhaps this was why Nellie shouldn't use sarcasm.

Lacking even a feignt idea of what Jana was referring to with the royal family losing members, Nellie nevertheless looked over he shoulder to follow the wolf's gaze up to the sentries. They were holding rifles. Well of course they were, all guards had rifles. But these breechloaders were pointed at them. Not exactly the behavior Nellie would have been expecting from soldiers coming down to retrieve their drunk prince.

Then things began happening quickly. Jana started yelling. The guards on the walls began shooting. And the crowds in the marketplace began screaming. Nellie dove for cover, catching a glimpse of the cowardly wolf running away. Cowardly. Well, cowards are the ones who live another day. The cheetah considered how she could join her, waiting for a window between shots as the guards cycled their rounds. It was hard to stay calm. She had been around small arms most her life, but never on the business end.

It took Nellie a moment to realize that the guards were not aiming for her. Initially figuring that the guards were just poor marksbeasts, a chanced peak over the top of the barrel she crouched behind revealed that the guns were not even pointing towards her. They were pointing at the hay where the prince lay. Why the devil? Something was wrong. This had to be some sort of mutiny. But Nellie thought those barbaric incidents were reserved for the sea. And she had just spent months with Mr. Kosovo vetting these sentries! And yet here it was. Rebellion.

The young apprentice turned so that she could crouch on her knees, dress dirtying from the ilk that covered the cobbled streets. She couldn't just let the prince get shot. That was treason by inaction. But she didn't exactly have a weapon to return fire. Running for help would take too long. She couldn't even see a way that she could lift him; he looked more than double her weight. The wolf. Perhaps that urchin could help get the prince out. But the canine was long gone. Nellie bared her teeth in frustration. Maybe she could roll him. If she tackled His Highness hard enough, perhaps she could get him under the sentry bridge. That would give her a bit more time.

With little alternative, Nellie hoped for the best. She jumped cover and ran to the prince.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost Character Portrait: NPC
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Everett Thane

In his ears, all he could hear was the beating of his heart.

It beat like a drummer's nightmare song.

Why? What was going on? WHY!?

In his mind, he saw an artisan all in black stand and brandish a paintbrush. On it, black ink dripped off onto the floor, and with a flourish, the user splattered all that he could see. Weaving it back and forth so that everything was being blacked out in the black ink. Then, he heard silence.

Unaware of his dangerous predicament, or his unknown savior's sudden struggle to save him, he stayed blacked out.

Unfortunately for Nellie, the troops were getting closer. Their near silent pitter patter of paws on cobblestone only added to the panick stricken atmosphere.

Though, with her sudden tackle to save Everett's life, adrenaline coursed through her and she succeeded. Everett slid and tumbled slightly under the sentry bridge, except for his tail that flashed golden amber in the sunlight. If it wasn't hidden the shadows, the sentries may see and descend upon them like vultures. In the end they would be finished.

This would have most likely happened if a nearby unknown tiger peasant hadn't rushed through the stalls of fearful merchants. No doubt, trying to take advantage of the chaos to steal some valuables. However the guards didn't know this. They just mistook the tiger peasant for the prince trying to flee the scene. Of course to them, all tigers must look the same from behind. Poor fools.

The sentries immediately took chase after the tiger thief, taking them away from where the Prince really was. How fortunate for them.

Under the sentry bridge's shadow, Prince Everett groaned and barely started to blink his eyes open. A huff of pain was soon expressed with a flinch that was followed by him bring his front paw to his side, where blood seeped slowly. A slash that he had taken from the sword of Corvus.

*****

Meanwhile, it took Jana awhile to realize that she wasn't being followed. Where had the strange tiger and cheetah gone? Maybe she could sniff them out if she was really serious. Maybe they could offer her money to help them?

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost Character Portrait: NPC
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  1. edit: jana meant out of the city

    by Abraxas_Axis

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Jana panted. She had been running quite a bit, and through difficult pathways that would make it hard for the guards to track her and the others.
"Well, it looks like we're free. Come on, I know a place where we can... hide..."
Jana's sentence trailed off as she realized that the prince and the cheetah girl were nowhere to be found. When running, she hadn't bothered to look over her shoulder. The she-wolf cursed, smacking a hand to her forehead, and then stealthily retraced her steps in order to not be found.
At last she found them hidden under a sentry bridge. She took a few steps back and, making sure she was in shadow, sprinted into an acrobatic roll under the bridge. Since she'd moved so fast and in shadows, any guards would have had a hard time noticing her.
Once making sure nobody had noticed, she turned to the two of them. She immediately noticed a cut on the side of Prince Everett. It wasn't too deep, but it was bleeding. A sword wound. Jana tsked quietly. "See, this is what happens when you don't run away from a conflict you can't win." Rooting around in one of the hidden pouches she kept on her person, she took out some cloth bandages and a waterskin. She carefully poured a dribble of the water onto the wound to wash it out, and then began to wrap the bandages around Everett's torso. "I may not know much about healing, but certainly enough to get by," she whispered. "This bandage should hold long enough for us to get out." A blotch of red soon appeared on the side of the bandage wrap.
"However," Jana continued quietly, "I'm no expert, so we out to get out of this city quickly so we can get Prince Everett here to a hospital." Spotting a dirty, damp and torn cloak that someone had discarded, she took it and put it on the prince to mask his features. "Now come on. Stick to the shadows and follow me this time, I know a way out. Trust me."

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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  1. just a note, when jana said out of here, she had meant out of the city. however, i see i hadn't really clarified that much so i fixed it, so you should probably fix urs too.

    by Abraxas_Axis
  2. Whoops, I didn't even know footnotes were a thing! Sorry, oh well. Guess we'll make the misunderstanding work.

    by Krypt
  3. ok that;s completely fine. in fact, i have a way of how it could work....

    by Abraxas_Axis

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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie felt the strain twinge in her injured arm as she recovered from her foray at the prince. It had worked. Almost immediately the shooting had stopped, and the young cheetah began to wonder how long it would take for the rebels to make their way down the stairs. Surely there were some loyal guards to stop them. But then again, for the sentries to have been so brazen to fire in the open streets, they must have sufficient confidence in their comrades behind them in the palace. Perhaps this little coup was more widespread than it seemed.

Getting back onto her paws, she shuffled over to help the Prince. "Your highness? Are you alright sah?" Nellie said hopefully. It was then she noticed his wounded side, glistening even in the shade of the arch. Clearly he wasn't.

Suddenly, like a kudu jumping out of the fold of a veld, the shewolf from before suddenly appeared. So stunned was Nellie at Jana's appearance that she took a step backwards, banging her head on the inside edge of the bridge. Rubbing the emerging bruise, she became suspicious as Jana immediately took up a position beside the tiger prince. But that fear was dispelled once the shewolf began to treat him. And chide them.

"Well, there wasn't much we could do..." Nellie offered weakly, still too shocked from the whole affair to offer an argument. But when Jana began making moves to take charge of the Prince, Nellie felt a bolt of anxiety shoot through her. The hospital seemed like the obvious place to go. The guards would more than likely know Prince Everett was injured, wouldn't that be the first place they looked? And who knew how widespread this debacle was? If the soldiers were able to bring the constabulary into the plot, there would be too many boots on the ground in the capital to avoid. They would be found no matter where they hid, the police always knew of the best spots to find fugitives.

The cheetah put a firm paw on the shoulder of Jana before the wolf began to lead off, hoping her voice would be just as steady. "Lookit, wolf. Those guards up'n there wouldn't 'ave had the pluck to shoot in the open like that if it was jus' them goin' mad. Chances are theres a lot more beasts tryin' to kill His Highness than we think. I think wes gotta risk him not gettin' his wound treated propa' for now and hop on the first train outta 'ere.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Everett

Everett began to pant softly, blinking to clear his blurred vision that was split between a world of dark shade and blinding light. Ah, he was looking out from under something. A building? No, a bridge.

"Your highness? Are you alright sah?" At the sound of the feminine voice, his ears flicked and he shoved himself into a sitting position.

He was facing the cheetah.

Then, before he could answer, a mutt showed up.

For some reason, he couldn't focus on the sudden rush of words that spewed from the Wolf's mouth. All he could notice was the shape of her ears. So different were they from the rounded ears of a feline. And not to mention the longer muzzle. Or the ugly tail. He had never been this close to one before.

Though, of course he had met a few diplomats from far off lands. But never this close, and more often then not, he was meeting them at a political dinner, where they sat far from him since he was of no interest to foreign diplomats.

The second Prince wasn't inheriting the throne, so why bother getting to know him? He was not a valuable chess piece.

"Now come on. Stick to the shadows and follow me this time, I know a way out. Trust me."

Before he could argue back about having to trust a Wolf, the cheetah spoke up.

"Lookit, wolf. Those guards up'n there wouldn't 'ave had the pluck to shoot in the open like that if it was jus' them goin' mad. Chances are theres a lot more beasts tryin' to kill His Highness than we think. I think wes gotta risk him not gettin' his wound treated propa' for now and hop on the first train outta 'ere."

Everett chuffed angrily, "I'm sure I can take care of myself from here." He pulled away, and clawed his way to a standing position. DAMMIT! His whole body was screaming in pain, no doubt bruised and, maybe broken in a few parts, from the fall. He tried to take a step, and instead, staggered. Clinging to a nearby barrel for support, he hissed. "Okay, maybe not."

"However, it'd be best to escape first. If I'm found, they won't capture, but kill me on sight." He wobbled dangerously, and growled at the pain in his shoulder. "My wounds can wait."

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Jana gave the cheetah a confused look. "What do you mean? I did say "out of this city", we should be safe once we're out of this... Wait a minute." A lightbulb suddenly came on in her head, and she suddenly became a teensy bit nervous - something very unusual in the street-hardened she-wolf. "Are you telling me that this coup isn't just going on in this city?"
It was a possibility, of course. Jana was really uninformed about what was going on with the whole coup. Perhaps it wasn't just in this city. Perhaps he'd bribed people to look for Everett, or attack him. Perhaps... ugh! This was all too confusing and Jana didn't know enough to figure it out. She needed knowledge, information.
At that moment, the prince pulled away from her. "I'm sure I can take care of myself from here," he said angrily, and it stung Jana a bit. Here she was trying to help these people without even much of an incentive to it, and here they were, trying to push her away just because she was a wolf. It wasn't really that fair, especially since she was going out of her way to assist them.
As he moved away, Everett stumbled and clutched a barrel to keep from falling. The prince hissed, clutching his wounds and attempting to backpedal on his claim. Jana couldn't help but smirk a bit. Serves you right for putting prejudice over assistance, she thought with more than a bit of satisfaction.
As the prince explained that escape trumped medical attention, despite his obvious pain, Jana sighed. "It goes against all my gray matter to say this, but... alright. The bandages will have to do, for now. I have an escape route planned out that should be safe. Although..." Jana trailed off, then looking at the young cheetah woman before her. "You'd said something about a train. My path had lead me to a secret tunnel dug under the wall and hidden - it had been used for illegal immigrants before. Though, in hindsight, a train might be better. It would get us away faster, and give us more cover... but I don't know any safe ways to the train station. It would be a risk."
The she-wolf put her hands on her hips and looked back and forth between Everett and Nellie. "Well, it's your guy's call. I'm just the messenger here, and I still don't know fully what's going on. Your choice - tunnel or train?" Then, quickly peeking out from under the bridge, she added, "And make it quick, too; I see a few palace guards coming over this way."

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie winced as the Prince made his attempt at being belligerent, slightly more self aware now that Everett was conscious again. It had been one thing to complain about his behavior when he was out like a light, but that awkward awe had returned when His Highness was aware again. Listening to Jana speak, the cheetah couldn't help but hope with each new sentence that it would be an intelligent one. Not for any particular prejudice against Jana, but more because it would seem embarrassing to be engaged in such a commonplace conversation around the prince. Luckily, the shewolf had more in her head than fur, and it was Nellie's turn to respond. She cleared her throat.

"I think if his Highness is goin' to only using a couple cloth bandages to be stopin' a sabre strike, wes best keep 'im from the acrobatics of a tunnel anna' foot escape. I have two tickets for the 4:10 to Draxton..." Nellie explained carefully, addressing her remarks to Jana because she was too anxious to look at the prince directly. "...and with all the commotion 'n things from the shootin' we should be able blend in with the crush on the way over there."

The second ticket, of course, belonged to Mr. Kosovo. They were supposed to be their ride home after the tradesman made his report. Mr. Kosovo...what had gotten to him? Nellie was sure that crafty leopard could take care of himself. Although a bit apprehensive about leaving her employer ticket-less in a revolting capitol, the cheetah determined that saving his Highness was probably the higher priority.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Everett

When Jana smirked at him very openly, Everett couldn't help but glower just a bit. For sure, he was annoyed with the Wolf.

He didn't know why or how, but she was definitely annoyed with her. Okay, maybe he did know a little bit if why he didn't like her, but he wasn't going to say it. Telling her, that she has a major attitude problem to her face wouldn't be good right now. What kind of beast just decides to help some random stranger? Definitely someone who was whacked in the head.

Or looking for money.

And don't forget his unlucky victim.

Nellie was okay for a cheetah, but her accent and way of speaking was... atrocious. He really wasn't used to the commoners way of speech. And right now, for some reason, he really want to correct her way of speaking. Strangely enough, it reminded him of his mother and his governess.

So far, he had ignored them both to put pressure on his various wounds. As he turned to look for Jana's said patrolling guards, the broken half of the arrow that was still embedded in his shoulder became very obvious. It was a wonder he was even moving it at all.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Jana tapped her lip thoughtfully as Nellie - the cheetah country girl - spoke. "An interesting proposal," the she-wolf replied. "However, if we're trying to get out of here without getting caught or tracked down, don't you think it would be rather foolhardy to show our faces at the train station like that?" Before Nellie could reply, Jana held up a hand to interrupt her. "But I digress. The train, in retrospect, sounds like a much better idea, considering our fugitive prince's condition." Pausing to fork a clawed finger at Prince Everett Thane, who at the moment appeared to be glowering at them both with more than a bit of contempt (Must not be a people person, Jana thought), she continued. "Now, there are two options I see that could work." Jana held up two fingers. "One option is to sneak on. This would be a pretty easy feat for me - I do it all the time; however, I'm not sure how well you guys are at that sort of thing. Even if you do know a thing or two about infiltration, it would be a bit of a risk. The second option is to disguise ourselves. This could also be easy but risky, because we can dress ourselves up all we want, but some sharp-eyed guard could give us a hard scrutinizing and immediately recognize Everett here. Also, you said we only have two tickets; one of us would have to stay behind." Pausing to take a breath, Jana then continued. "Regardless of which option we choose, we'd still have to brave this cesspool of a city filled with guards ordered to - most likely - kill us on sight. I only have a vague idea of where the train station actually is, so that's another risk. In short, it's one hell of a gauntlet run, but if we stay here we'd be much more likely to die. And we have to get out. But if we are to do so successfully we need a plan. However, I think since this is Everett's life we're talking about here, that it should be he who decides." Jana then turned towards the prince expectantly, waiting for an answer.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie could feel the heated glance of the Prince on her side, furthering her resolve to not make eye contact with her injured sovereign. She began to wonder if he had heard her speaking disrespectfully of him after their initial fall. They didn't still hang people for offenses like that, did they? She hoped not. What a telegram that would make for her parents.

Catching the back half of Jana's ideas for the situation, Nellie considered the proposals inwardly. She could, like Jana, sneak if required. She had done a fare amount of that during some of the more covert tasks in her trade. Perhaps not as well as the shewolf, as she had probably been doing it much longer, but Nellie was sure that Mr. Kosovo had trained her well. But such speculation was fruitless considering the Prince's state. He could barely walk, much less sneak. Nellie wondered if the Prince could even move without groaning, torn up as he was. They would have to disguise him as a cripple or the like if they wanted to the rail yard. Rather demeaning, even for a commoner.

On the assumption that the Prince probably had a similar line of thinking, Nellie took a breath and turned to meet the Prince's gaze, focusing on a point behind him rather than meeting his painful expression. "Wes h'only wants to 'elp, your Highness. Let us get you outta' danga'," Nellie offered hopefully, equal parts ready for Prince Everett to storm off in a noble huff or collapse into pained oblivion.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Everett

Everett felt like someone has stuffed his ears full of cotton. He really was watching Jana, trying hard to figure out why, she was speaking but her words weren't reaching his ears correctly. It was maddening how her words became garbled. How was this happening?

He growled, and pressed his paw to his face, almost covering it entirely.

The world had begun to spin.

He mumbled and shook his head, "I don't think I can sneak anywhere in this condition." He words were somehow eloquent despite his condition and situation.

"Wes h'only wants to 'elp, your Highness. Let us get you outta' danga'," Nellie offered hopefully.

His ears twitched in annoyance at her accent.

Everett wanted to turn and correct her manner of speech, but he resisted the urge. Instead, he tried to focus on escaping. And that needed a Feline with a straight head on, and in order to do that, he had to assume command. He tried to straighten his back and a stabbing made him drop to the floor in a heap. "Ah!"

He huffed and then feeling hopeless, suddenly decided to just make a run for it. These females appeared to only have talking on their mind. Sometimes, it was better to just react. So he ducked his head, and in a quick movement was up and staggering in the opposite direction of where Jana said she saw guards.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Jana watched as Prince Everett dropped all pretenses of a plan and just started shambling away in the opposite direction of the guards. People moved out of the way of the bleeding, bent-over tiger rushing through the streets. It was fortunate that she'd given him that shawl to disguise his identity, and also that the bridge was blocking the view from the guards.
Jana groaned, putting a paw to her face. "Ugh. Men, always the same, I swear. Always ready to rush into danger without an idea of how they'll get out alive." Jana turned to Nellie. "Well, I guess we just have to hope that he followed our advice and went to the train station, or we're as good as dead. Come on." With that, she began to follow the swiftly-absconding idiot prince.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie was only somewhat surprised when Prince Everett began to stumble away on his own, for she had begun to suppose by now that he had a rather impulsive personality. It didn't stop her from being nervous about the endeavor. The shawl wasn't the best disguise, the Prince still looked more or less like himself but on a desert expedition. Hopefully the hullabaloo surrounding the initial shooting will keep the civilians distracted enough.

Nodding at Jana's remarks, she quickly followed the shewolf and the Prince. Threading through panicking felines with a measured skill, she quickly arrive at his side. "The station is roight that ways, your Highness," Nellie started with a pointed paw, though quickly withdrew it when she realized that the Prince probably very well knew where the capitol's central station was. Resuming the line in an attempt to be more helpful, she quickly added "but that thoroughway is always blocked'en by customs an' guards. Per'aps if wes just circle about a bit we cans jus' come into the station a'long the tracks, an' avoid all the checkpoints for foot traffic."

Nellie gave a quickly glance at Jana, quickly finding the poor scamp more relatable than his highness the prince. Hopefully she didn't get in any trouble for meddling in this affair, at least Nellie would soon be fleeing the city. Hopefully Jana had a way out.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Everett

Everett was walking, barely able to keep everything together as he suddenly stumbled into the She-Wolf. He groaned in irritation. The smell of wolf. Doesn't she take any baths at all? What do commoners use for bathing anyways. A bucket of water? Without any apology for stumbling into her, he pulled away as soon as he could. Though, it wasn't that fast, seeing as how he was injured. Where was the station, again? I should have paid more attention...

"The station is roight that ways, your Highness," Nellie started with a pointer paw, "but that thoroughway is always blocked'en by customs an' guards. Per'aps if wes just circle about a bit we cans jus' come into the station a'long the tracks, an' avoid all the checkpoints for foot traffic."

"Lead the way, Plain-Racer." He let out the words, oddly able to conceal his frustration and pain. Like he was on a lovely stroll through the city. Though, his nice words, and smooth accent made a few Common Felines to turn a ear at him. Of course, he didn't notice at all. "Sad to say, I don't know this city very well."

He really didn't. His brother, being the heir to the throne was the one who actually tried to win the love of the Felines. He knew this city and despite what their mother had warned of, Prince Korso had even been known in a few underground gambling rings. Though, this Prince Everett had thought fun and had even joined his elder brother a few times, but found it too much work to hide his identity and lose their guards. Prince Everett really wasn't fond of doing anything other then Loaf around the castle and perhaps, talk lies into the ears of handmaidens.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Jana was hurrying to catch up with Everett when he stumbled and pulled up short. She ran right into him, and almost fell down before catching herself on the wall. The prince shot her a disgusted look and groaned and pulled away without even an apology. What an asshole, she thought to herself, trying to remind herself why she was trying to save this ungrateful brat's life.
As Nellie began to describe the throughway to the train station, Jana cut in. "'Circle around', you say? Well, you've got the right girl for the job." She was tempted to add But you probably don't see me as sapient enough to be classified with a gender, but she decided to not press her luck. "Describe the general location to me, and I can probably-" She cut off as she saw a patrol of five guards coming their way.
Not even bothering to speak, Jana grabbed hold of Nellie's and Everett's shoulders and steered them into an off-street alleyway. Holding a finger to her muzzle, she waited for the guards to pass before speaking in a more hushed voice. "If you can describe the general location of the station to me, such as what street it's on or what buildings it is near, I can probably find us a route through the underground. Do you think you can do that for me, Nellie?"

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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  1. Ugh darn it. Jana's manner of speech makes it hard to convey messages. By "underground" I mean criminal alleyways and the like, not literal sewers and such

    by Abraxas_Axis
  2. perhaps I should have capitalized the Underground part

    by Abraxas_Axis
  3. Oh, ha ha. I guess we can chalk it up to Nellie not being familiar with urban slang.

    by Krypt

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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie was still trying to figure out whether the Prince Everett's instruction was one that warranted a reply, when she was spontaneously wolf-handled into a less trafficked avenue by Jana. The sound of tramping boots came and went, with little by way of voices accompanying them. Not even the growl of a lieutenant reminding them of their orders. They seemed to know what they were doing.

Perking her ears to Jana, Nellie was somewhat confused at first as to why Jana was wanting to go through the sewers. If they were planning on threading through to the open end of the train station and going in that way, the best way to get there would be to follow the roads. But the wolfs way was probably safer, given the sheer amount of guards they had seen so far. She had seen more sentries today than her entire month of review with Mr. Kosovo! She began to think of the best route to the train station, fighting against her own general ignorance of the layout of the capitol.

"Roight, well the centra' station is about two blocks long, I thinks, so wes gotta pretty big target to shoot for. I'm think'n the best way to come in would be off Darfot, that's where the place becomes unroofed and there is not very much platform. There's a big warehouse there too, where they unload the freighters, so there'll be plen'y of stuff to hide between, yeah? We jus' gotta walk up the tracks from there casual-like with the workbeasts and we can make it to the passenger platform.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Everett

Prince Everett Thane let Jana steer him out of the main traffic area and into a nearby alley with Nellie. He was quite a lot taller then her and Nellie despite still being a young tiger. Traveling with them might not be wise, but right now, they were all the help he needed. Especially if he wanted to survive someday to kill Lord Corvus for ending his brother's life... and his father's.... And maybe, his mother and little brother...? Who knew what else had happened while Corvus had him and Korso locked up in the library. Fools.

"I am a fool." It was a growl, softly spoken as he leaned against the brick wall of one of the building shielding them from untold enemies. He fisted his front paw into a fist and slammed it into the wall, "We just went along with Lord Corvus, like blind fools."

His tail was puffed up and twitching like crazy. The grief, and anger were making their way to the surface now, unraveling from that pit in his gut where he had pushed them down in order to survive.

With a moaning growl, his sorrow began to cut itself deep into his bones. "My Father and Brother..."

He didn't care anymore... If his entire family was gone, what was there to do but kill Lord Corvus...? His mind was in confusion, and when he thought of what would happen after he killed Corvus, what then? His family was gone! He hadn't the training like Korso had to rule this Kingdom! And even now, who knew whichNoble families could be trusted...

This was all going on in his head, a cacophony of thoughts, what ifs and what could happen. It was too much and a grumbling growl stirred in his chest, as he ducked to cradle his head in his paws with eyes shut tight, "Ughh."

The headache he had been feeling since earlier suddenly bloomed into a full on migraine.

He was a mess, and currently unraveling.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost
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Jana watched with sympathy as Everett began to break down. She remembered how she'd reacted similarly when she was cast out of her clan, never able to feel her mother's warm fur again. It had been like they were dead.
Showing a bit of kindness, the she-wolf reached out with a gloved paw and touched the prince's shoulder. As she did, she was shocked by his height; even though he couldn't be a year older than her, he was already a head and shoulders (or more) above the two females.
"Look, my liege," Jana said carefully, not wanting another outburst of grief or prejudice, "I understand that you are still grieving over what happened to your family. While it is good that you cared so much about them, you must move on. If we don't get out of here, you'll just end up sharing the same fate as them, and what good will that do your country? If you want to defeat Lord Corvus and establish justice in this land, you have to keep going. I've seen people who've given up, lying in puddles of their own piss... and that cannot happen to you, Everett. You must move on." Afterwards, Jana would be a bit surprised at the amount of steel and conviction in her voice as she said that.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost Character Portrait: Allan Kosovo
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#, as written by Krypt
Nellie looked on as the big cat broke down into tears, shock keeping her from being more sympathetic. She had not been aware that others in the Royal Family had been dealt with. It made sense given the coup, and she would have probably come to that disturbing revelation once she had a moment to think on the train, but it was quite heavy hearing the news from a beast who was actually there. Wherever Lord Corvus had the rest of his family locked up, they would have to be found. With any hope a good tradesman could do the job.

While glad that Jana had taken up the role of comforting the distraught gentry, Nellie struggled to strike up the quite urgent instruction that they needed to continue moving. Trying to find a balance between addressing the prince as the royalty he was, and coaxing him onward like she would do for her little brother when he scrapped his knee on the way back to the house, turned out to be rather difficult. But the fact remained that a big sniveling tiger made quite an unusual spectacle in a not-quite-side-enough side alley.

"So here is where my train ticket as run off to then," a low voice said, cutting through the bustle heard from the main street. The grip of nerves that had struck Nellie quickly melted into grateful recognition. She turned to see a shadowy feline, standing on the lee side of the alleyway. The creamy fur of the clouded leopard was visible only around the figures face, as he was otherwise completely covered up in surprisingly rugged finery. The only thing that suggested he had more trouble than a mere walk over here was a torn hem at the bottom of the shirt, mostly concealed by the way he had tucked it.

"Mister Kosovo!" Nellie exclaimed, despite herself. The cheetah knew her boss had an odd twick about not liking to hearing his name used in conversations if it was already clear he was being addressed.

"You have gotten far, and picked up an accomplice, but we need to keep going. Your highness, will you move? You will move with us, or will be moved by the mob, it is your choice," the leopard said with an urgent sternness. His eyes were fixed on the young prince, seemingly unperturbed by the city racket that echoed through the alley.

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Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost Character Portrait: Allan Kosovo
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Everett

Everett was distraught, and while he was certainly letting out mournful growls, he wasn't sniveling.

"Look, my liege," Jana said carefully, "I understand that you are still grieving over what happened to your family. While it is good that you cared so much about them, you must move on. If we don't get out of here, you'll just end up sharing the same fate as them, and what good will that do your country? If you want to defeat Lord Corvus and establish justice in this land, you have to keep going. I've seen people who've given up, lying in puddles of their own piss... and that cannot happen to you, Everett. You must move on."

He growled softly, resisting the urge to shrug her paw off. It wouldn't do to shrug such a small wolf off, especially one who was helping him.

"So here is where my train ticket as run off to then." The cutting voice broke through Everett's grief and it made him turn to see the owner of the voice.

The feline was not even half the size of Everett.

This was the Cheetah's Master?

"Mister Kosovo!" The Cheetah exclaimed.

Or not.

"You have gotten far, and picked up an accomplice, but we need to keep going. Your highness, will you move? You will move with us, or will be moved by the mob, it is your choice," the stern Leopard spoke.

Everett let out a small cough and ducked his head, just as he abruptly moved away from the Wolf. He took a step toward the Clouded Leopard and with gaze cast down upon the smaller feline, he nodded, "I will go with you. Though I hope you, Tradesbeast, will not lead me to my enemies."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost Character Portrait: Allan Kosovo
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(OOC: Sorry this took me so long.)

Jana was startled as a voice spoke out to them. Whirling around, she saw a leopard dressed in rather rugged finery. "Mister Kosovo!" Nellie exclaimed.
Jana gave her companion(?) a questioning glance. "Friend of yours?" She inquired.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince Everett Thane Character Portrait: Nellie Veld Character Portrait: Jana the Lost Character Portrait: Allan Kosovo
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#, as written by Krypt
Kosovo eyed the the Prince coolly, though not with contempt. "My liege, I am first a subject, and then a tradesman. I assure you that my loyalty is unquestioned," the leopard responded, recognizing the need to make that concession. Turning his stance slightly to open himself up to the others, he raised a paw in gesture of the streets that ran outside the alleyway. "Speed is of the essence. There is a streetcar that runs down the middle of the main all the way to Central Station. Naturally, there have been checkpoints set up, but as long as we get off the block before, we should be fine."

Without so much as a pause for clarification, Kosovo turned to pick his way down the alley. Nellie took the chance to return Jana's remark, taking up position behind the Prince to act as a rear guard. "Employer, more like. He's the first cat you'd look for to get yourself out of a sticky spot," Nellie explained, a hint of admiration in her voice. She turned as if to start walking, before halting, as if she had thought of something. Turning back, she asked "Are you goin' to come along? I'm sures we can get His Highness out just fine." She expected the answer to be a polite "no", from which Nellie could transition into a brief note of thanks. After all, who would want to throw themselves into more danger?

At the end of the alleyway, Kosovo stepped into the light of the street, acting as natural as any cat would in the midst of a riot.

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