Viva La Vida [IC]

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Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sheff on Sat Feb 27, 2010 9:26 pm

((If you have not yet done so, please read the OOC topic found here: viva-vida-ooc-t38914.html.))

((Apologies for the long opening.))

Viva La Vida


The day was gray, clouded over with rolling nimbuses, bringing the sense of a coming rain. Below the clouds sat a castle, large and magnificent to the eye, its tallest tower seeming to almost pierce the barrier of gray above. The multi-colored glass windows looked dull in the limited light, yet its carefully built frame still appeared clean cut and accurate, as though the best architectures had hand made the structure themselves. Two figures stood on one of its stone balconies, both facing the same direction, peering out beyond the castle.

One stood closer to the barrier placed between a solid footing and thin air, palms pressed to the cool rock. His neck-long, wavy black hair was stirred by the wind slightly, as was his cloak, a cool breeze beginning to build, feeling the cold seep beneath his leather clothing. Brown eyes, so dark they nearly appeared black, looked out before him, past the courtyard with its gardens and dirt paths, and past the large wall that surrounded the castle, finding the city market just beyond the iron gates. It was circular in shape, the multitude of shops and other sellers on its perimeter, other traders setting up their wares in its center.

Yet today, despite the fact it was filled to the brim with people, not one person was there to sell, trade, or bargain. They had all gathered there for something important, something that did not occur often. A platform had been built before the castle gates, a few figures standing upon it, dressed in what seemed royal clothing. One appeared to kneel on one knee to another, his head bowed.

The man on the balcony watched carefully, his eyes examining every detail, an air of disgust to him. He watched as something was lifted above the kneeling figure’s head, giving off a small shine, regardless of the blocked sun above. It was lowered to his head, a sudden roar of cheering occurring from the distant crowd, their mood mirroring the exact opposite of the sky above. The man’s teeth clenched, hating the sight.

“My lord, Malus,” addressed a voice from behind, the man turning to find another, having completely forgotten his presence. It was a younger fellow, only appearing to have reached manhood a couple years before, his blonde hair tied up in a small ponytail behind his head, a similarly colored goatee gracing his chin. Green eyes looked back at the brown questionably, the young man speaking again.

“Why do you let yourself become angered by this? For days you knew this would happen, yet you still are frustrated…”

“Because Alton, you just don’t understand how much turmoil I go through,” replied Malus coldly, looking back to the market. “That position as king was rightfully mine, not to be given to some… boy.”

“He is the prince though, captain,” said the younger.

“And yet I am family as well!” he exclaimed, whipping around to Alton. “I was the former king’s brother! I am the captain of the guard! Yet, the king insisted that his own son, not even a day past his eighteenth year, should have the throne, just as inexperienced to the position as an infant learning to walk!”

His outburst had been sudden, unexpected, and he realized this, forcing his body to relax, his eyes closing and breathing deep.

“I guess there is nothing I can do about this at the moment…” he muttered, glancing to the market. “But mark my words, Alton, my place as king will be fulfilled…” He looked to him. “And you will assist me in doing so.”

Alton bowed. “I have always been, and always will be, loyal to you sir.”

Just then, the air cracked, a roll of thunder washing over them and the city, the floodgates of the heavens above bursting open, the rain flowing down like a flood. Malus only smiled as he became drenched, looking up to the clouds.

“…I will strike, soon enough… and the king will fall…”

-*-3 Months Later-*-

The room was quiet, the only sound belonging to the pitter-patter of the rain against the windows, the last rays of sunlight dipping away from view. It was a grand place, the ceiling towering many feet above, the walls adorned with portraits from past generations, featuring great leaders and other influential persons. A red carpet ran across the marble floor, splitting the room into two as it ended at the foot of a throne, carved elegantly from oak.

Sitting upon it was a young man, younger then any person you would actually expect to be seated on such a threshold. Dressed in rich clothing, yet seeming more casual then most, his striking blue eyes stared out blankly to a distant window. His dirty blonde hair looked somewhat ruffled, yet still clean cut, his face shaved smooth. He seemed to maintain a quite impressive physique for one such as him, visible muscle beneath his clothing.

“My king, is there something troubling you?” said a man standing beside the throne, many years prime to the one he had just addressed as his ruler. He wore a simple robe, falling all the way to the floor below, an aged face showing a slight glimpse of worry from his gray eyes. A beard covered a large portion of his facial features, gray hair cut short.

“Robert, how many times do I have to tell you not to call me that?” said the young man, turning to the elder. “We’ve known each other for years… so call me by my name. Please.”

Robert sighed. “Very well… Sheffer.”

The king grinned. “That’s better…” His head turned back to the window. “And to answer your question; no.”

Robert followed Sheffer’s gaze up to the glass barrier. “It hasn’t rained this heavily since your crowning…”

He nodded. “The farmers will be pleased though. Rainy seasons always bring good crops…” A sudden sneeze erupted from the king, wiping his nose with the back of a hand.

“Are you alright?” asked Robert, a tone of concern in his voice. Sheffer only waved him off, giving out a sniff.

“I’m fine, Robert,” he said, looking to him. “No need to worry.”

“Yes, but I just can’t help but-“

“Think about what happened to my father?” Sheffer questioned. “There is no need to fret over it. I’m young and healthy, and I doubt the chances of the sickness that took my father will take me as well… unless there is some cruel irony amongst us.”

Silence fell between them, both peering up to storm outside one last time, Robert turning to the king.

“I think I shall excuse myself for the night, and I encourage you to as well.”

Sheffer nodded. “I will… just a few more minutes.”

“Then I say good night.” With that, Robert removed himself from the room, disappearing past a side door near the throne, off to his quarters.

Sheffer sighed, his head leaning back, hands reaching up and rubbing his closed eyes. Robert had been right; something was troubling him, mainly concerning his new position. Only a few months had past since he was given the crown, but he already had become a receiver of all the stress that it brought with it. It wasn’t necessarily a daunting task, being king (he had many an hour to himself), but having people rely on him to make decisions brought a sense of worry to him. Living through it without his father was hard enough, but when the whole city seemed to question the logic with giving the throne to a man having only become of age added to it tenfold. Now, with this small cold, his head pounded day after day, still becoming used to the new lifestyle.

His only source of guidance now was Robert; a member of the council, and a long time friend of the late king. He would stand by his side for the months to come, teaching all the young ruler would need to know, directing the king to the right decisions. Yet Sheffer, as was in his nature, seemed to have a good sense of what would bring joy to his people.
Just as the urges of lifting himself from the throne to retreat to his comforting bed, a roar of thunder occurred, rattling the windows and giving a feeling of the floor shaking. Sheffer’s head snapped up, studying the air above him, somewhat surprised by the sudden disturbance of noise.

What he hadn’t realize yet, from some strange coincidence, the grand throne room doors had burst open just as the heavens erupted, quite a few men entering. Swords were gripped tightly in their hands, gleaming in the dying light, thin armor clinking. Sheffer picked up the sounds, his head snapping down to them.

“Malus!” he exclaimed, seeing his uncle leading the group forward. He carried himself proudly, his steps not faltering as he approached the king.

Sheffer’s eyes, now filled with confusion, snapped between the captain and his men.

“Why are you here?” he asked, wanting an answer.

“You should have seen this day coming, nephew…” said Malus, a cruel grin on his lips as he did not stop his quick stride. Sheffer’s hand shot out to his sword, leant against his throne, but his uncle was too fast, delivering a sudden blow to the king’s cheek, Sheffer falling from his seat to the floor.

Teeth gritted, he ignored the new pain, a hand groping for his weapon, only feeling the pressure of a boot on his forearm.

“Now Sheffer, let’s keep this simple,” came Malus’s voice, giving a swift kick to the king’s side, the victim now clutching it in pain. He felt himself rolling to his back, looking up to his uncle.

“What is this... this treachery?!” he yelled.

“It is simply the fall of a king, and the rise of the proper one,” replied Malus. “Something that should have happened long ago…”

Sheffer, anger and betrayal now fueling him, pushed himself to his knee, only to receive another blow to his back, letting out a grunt as he fell again. Malus motioned to his men, the king feeling rough hands gripping his arms, pulling him up.

“Will you cooperate?” asked the traitor, leaning down to Sheffer’s eye level. He only pulled against his restrainers, trying to escape, wanting to bring pain to the man before him.

There was a blur, the solid steel of a sword’s handle ramming into the side of Sheffer’s skull, his body becoming limp, eyes shutting. Malus sheathed the weapon, frowning.

“I presumed so…”

-*-

His clothes were tattered, his body weak. The cold seeped to his bones, the hard stone of his cell giving no comfort. Silence and darkness were his only companions now, not knowing how many days had passed. He remained in the far corner, curled up against the wall, feeling its mold pressed to his face.

Sheffer had been betrayed; simple as that. He should have foreseen it, Malus wanting the throne… He had always had a sense of his jealously, even during his father’s rule. Now, thinking back, it was blatantly obvious, the signs leading up to this. Malus had requested new recruits to be submitted into training for knighthood, and nearly doubling the guard in the city. All of these men were in his control, following his orders. Sheffer could only imagine what he offered to them if they helped him steal the crown.

Speaking of this, from broken conversation from passing guards and Malus himself, Sheffer knew of his now pronounced death. He recalled his uncle speaking, not acknowledging his presence but only his words, how his voice dripped with skin-shivering satisfaction as he explained every small detail of his announcement as king. How a crazed anti-loyalist found his way into the castle, stabbing the king as he slept, only to be caught and executed immediately. All lies.

“Oh Sheffer, you should have seen the expressions… of their grief… but then how they cheered as I said I would take your place…”

A cruel laugh had followed the words, Sheffer, even now, flinching at the memory. He felt like a fool… but his anger drove over any other emotion. Malus had deceived his country, even his family. Sheffer only wanted to feel his throat between his hands, choking his last breath away…

…but he could do nothing here, trapped in the dungeons below the castle. Nor did he see himself living through the situation. Malus had been pondering what to do with him, more then likely letting his mind construct a new, inhumane way to torture the body, just for Sheffer. If he did not make a decision soon, he would starve down in the prison anyway, having barely been given any food or drink for the past few days.

Now, depression and abandonment began to sink into his weary mind, gradually giving up any hope. He was alone, dying in a pit of darkness, a fake in his place…

A light appeared. At first, he thought it was his imagination, only trying to comfort his troubled thoughts, but he began to realize it was real, his eyes cracking open. It was on the edges of his vision, his head turning to the warm glow of a candle, flickers of red and orange painting the walls.

“Who’s there?” he croaked, his voice dry.

“A friend,” said a voice, his eyes focusing onto a hooded figure holding the source of light. Whoever the man was lifted a hand, revealing his face in one motion, one of a certain councilman…

“Robert!” He dragged himself over to the bars, standing shakily. “How did you…”

“There is not much time to talk,” replied the elder, urgency in his voice. “I knew from the beginning that Malus was only full of lies, so I did my best to find you… and I have succeeded.” He looked around quickly. “But I do not have much time. He will soon discover my absence, and will know I ventured down here…” Robert reached into his robe, pulling out a key. “…and I can only hope this is the right one.”

He moved to the lock upon the gate, inserting the key and giving it a twist. There was an audible click, the cell opening effortlessly. Sheffer stumbled out into the hall, only to have Robert force the candle into his hands.

“No need for thanking, just go,” he said, pointing down the opposite direction from the way of the castle. “Now flee, flee for your life and my reassurance that you are safe.” Sheffer only stood there, wanting to say something, anything.

“Go!” exclaimed Robert, pushing him away. Sheffer looked back to him for a moment, then down the tunnel into the dark, finally feeling his feet move forward.

With new-found strength, he sprinted off down the corridor, surrounded by rock, dirt beneath his feet. Ages seemed to pass as he ran, the tunnel branching off in other directions at times, but he only moved forward, not knowing any other options.

Suddenly, the area before him gave away, finding himself flailing through thin air. The candle’s limited light had failed him, and as he plummeted, he swore he could hear a sound, crashing in his ears. Was this the noise of his now imminent death?

In fact, no, it wasn’t. Sheffer felt his body crash into a surface, but not of stone, but of water, becoming submerged within it. He pushed his way up, taking a gasp of air as he broke the surface, only to be pulled under again from the strong current. The cycle continued, his surroundings black as he took gulps of life-giving oxygen, until unexpectedly, he could not dive up again, rugged rock blocking his path.

He began to panic, his body twisting and turning through the water, his body begging for air. Eventually, he could feel his mind falter, knowing he did not have much time. His lungs screamed, attempting to kick up one more time…

…and he was successful.

Sweet, heavenly air rushed into his lungs as he gasped, treading water as his eyes focused, finding light. He was now outside, floating down a river, a full moon shining up above.

Weak and beaten, he half-swam, half-paddled his way to shore, dragging himself onto the river’s edge, his eyes slipping shut as his body shook in fatigue. He had been fortunate… lucky even, to escape his prison, now somewhere beyond the city.

After recuperating for a few moments, he sat up slowly, still breathing heavily as his eyes studied the river, looking to the direction he had come. Surprisingly, it stretched for miles, etching its way across a vast plain, no apparent openings or caves that could have led him to this location. Was there an underground river that joined with this, not visible to the eye? Sheffer could only presume so.

Yet now was not the time to bring logic into things, but to flee. Sheffer, having already glanced to the horizon, could see the outline that was Soran, with its high stone walls and towering castle, darkened by the night. Malus would not hesitate to setting up a search, and might even be clever enough to send parties out his way.

With new determination, he forced himself to his feet, despite his body’s protest, seeing a grove of trees in the distance. He would go there to rest, and come morning, he would travel. To where, he could only guess, but hopefully beyond Malus’s grasp.

As he walked, his mind finally focused onto the previous events. He had escaped, now nearly the only one who knew the truth of his well-being. Malus’s rule would now be shrouded in lies, and any who would question it would meet a quiet death. He would control all that he pleased, molding Sathran into his plaything. There would be only one solution to this.

Sheffer would have to return, to fight for his kingdom, to crush the new order that would be formed. How he would do so was now bestowed to only him, the answer yet to be found. For now he promised himself, and his kingdom, he would come back, no matter what the condition.

He could only hope Sathran’s future did not turn out hideous.

-*-3 Years Later-*-

“Alright, you’re clear,” said the guard, bored and tired, waving to the driver of the horse-drawn carriage. He had just checked its load of potato-filled burlap sacks, not really bothering with an extensive search. It was too much of a routine, not one piece of material ever found to have been illegal within the city. Or person for that matter.

With a “Ya!” and the crack of the reigns, the carriage was off, passing through the arch of one of the city’s walls, beginning to travel on the cobblestone street, various building’s gracing its sides.

Night had fallen only hours before, the moon high above, blocked periodically by scattered clouds. The carriage moved on, greeted by silence from the sleeping city, alone as it rolled down the street.

Moments passed, and just as it began to approach the market, something dropped from its rear, quiet and quick, the figure rushing off to a nearby alley. It vanished into the shadows just as quickly as it had appeared, the driver of the cart none the wiser. It sneaked down the alleyway hastily, reaching the other side, becoming doused in moonlight.

It was, of course, Sheffer, garbed in a hooded cloak, a brown tunic beneath, leather trousers encasing his legs. A sheath hung from his belt, the handle of a sword jutting from its top. His eyes studied the street before him, no soul in sight, carefully moving to its edge, keeping to the shadows as he walked.

The years had done well for him, his body more built, taller and stronger. His face didn’t show his old youthfulness, in fact, more of ruggedness to his features. His stride was wide, as though in a hurry, boots tapping silently on the stone. Just from a glance, it would be a challenge to see him as the king he used to be, now hidden within him. His eyes were stern, only one thought resonating through his mind now, after successfully reentering his old city.

It was time.

But he would have to be cautious. His people thought of him as dead, Malus in control of every armed man in the city. He would be killed at recognition, and he knew that well. Trust would be limited, and even then, he would not show his face. The dark of night was his friend now, assistance of his intrusion into the city.

Three years he had waited, and now he was ready; ready to retrieve the crown from the false wearer.

It was now or never.
Last edited by Sheff on Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Obla-di, obla-da, life goes on, brah....

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Smithy on Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:20 am

Eve sat perched upon the gutters, deep within the maze of the city's winding residential streets. Streets she knew like the each crease and scar that adorned the back of her youthful hand. This is where she spent her time, this is where she worked. Rebelling against her by-the-book parents, a housewife and a knight, at the young age of eight and had taken to the streets finding her talents in theft and pick-pocketing. One of the few of her kind that actually survived in a city as strict as hers she'd re-named herself 'Sly'.

At the age of 16 with her birth date approaching she spotted the un-mistakable face of her father and his few men in the slums of the dark streets at midnight. Silently perching herself above them she listened as the bragged of their takeover of the king. How they were to receive their new king the following day. The news shocked her, how easily her father had been pursuaded against his beleifs. It digusted her to know he did so. She had rebelled against her parents, not her king. She prayed every night that her sins were forgiven.

She discussed her finding's with nobody. What had been done was done and she was just one person, what could've she done in the end? She was very much a loner. Worked alone and trusted nobody with even the minor things unless life depended on it. She had grown from a young and talented rebellious girl into a short-tempered, untrusting young woman. To have continued un-caught within her profession it was known her talents were of the finest. Agile, fast, and stubborn.

Perched on the gutter a shadow passed the corner of her eye and she crouched low. Studing the figure the build of the hooded man was un-familiar. On these streets she knew the make up of the few theives of black-market dealers that dared walk these back streets. This unfamiliar figure invited curiosity. Following in silent steps through the roof tops she kept alert for the figure's sudden turns. Be he skilled enough to pick up on his tail.
Yo-ho yo-ho a pirates life for me! Savvy?

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Vain on Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:26 pm

"Please, stop to think about what your doing Raven!" the knight in silvery armor shouted. He was muscularly built, but with an agile grace to him. His long blond hair and deep blue eyes gazed into the stark contrast of Raven's silver oculars and dark plated mail. "I have thought about it! Over and over! I will do what I must!" Raven countered firmly, stepping closer to his comrade. "If you walk out of those doors and abandon your country, do not expect to return," the silver knight warned. "Abandon my country you say? I've served this country before you were a twinkling in your mothers eye. I still remember where my loyalties lie, Bastion. Malus may have pulled the wool over your eyes, but I still see clearly," Raven shot back. Bastion seemed to become more enraged, "Your loyalties lie with a lost boy and rotting king! I'd like to know what you claim to see so clearly!?" Bastion shouted. "The boy still lives and I'm willing to bet my life on it. And that rotting king did more for you than you deserved Bastion. You want to know what I see? What I hear? Are you so deaf? Can't you hear it as well with Malus ruling this kingdom? Do you hear it? The pain, the suffering, the crying, the hatred, the love that was once strong but is now no more than dust on the wind? Do you hear it? Do you hear the cries of a broken city? It screams out in my mind and i cannot make it stop!" Raven cried at the knight. "I will return, and with the rightful ruler of this kingdom. I will bring the people I've defended back from that tyrant." Raven then turned and left the halls of the Soran castle, looking back once to emblazon it in his memory.
Last edited by Vain on Wed Mar 03, 2010 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
There is a place within each of us where we cannot escape the truth; where virtue sits as judge. To admit the truth of our actions is to go before that court, where process is irrelevant. Good and evil are intents, and intent is without excuse.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MedliSage on Tue Mar 02, 2010 4:56 pm

She sat on the rooftop, swinging her feet. She looked up at the sky -- the moon had been hanging for hours now, both stars and clouds dotting the sky. It was mostly silent, save for the occasional clack-clack of a horse's hooves against the stone walkways and the rare murmur of the chatter of people. The air was still and provided no breeze, but then night was still cool. Her eyes locked on the moon, and in the peacefulness of it all she nearly shut her eyes, but all was interrupted by an aching growl. She sighed and looked down at her stomach. My food I had taken from that other town ran out nearly two days ago now and I'm out of money... Standing, she surveys the city from her height. The people here look pretty well-off. I'm sure the merchants wouldn't be harmed if I took a few things for myself. They certainly have the money to spare... The girl shakes her head slightly in the only slightly justified disgust she held for the upper-class, before turning and proceeds to turn and make her way to the other end of the roof and glance around that portion of city. Finally, she spots a nice target -- a merchant cart filled with fruits being pulled by a horse with its owner sitting on its saddle, the wooden box it carried only held together with ropes, easily breakable by an arrow. Perfect. Shoot that and open the cart, make a commotion for easy entrance and exit, take my share and leave this stupid city. She opens her satchel in preparation, removes the bow from its hook on her quiver, and takes an arrow. Steadying her shot for a good five seconds, she lets it go, and -- as usual -- does not fail to hit her target, the rope snapping cleanly in two. The fruits begin to spill out as the horse neighs loudly, the owner looking back to the source of the commotion. Jumping down from the roof onto a balcony and then once more to the ground, the girl rushes to the cart. Grace swiftly picks up as much as she can carry before stuffing it in her bag, and then begins her sprint out of there, hoping no guard saw her.
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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sheff on Tue Mar 02, 2010 11:52 pm

The guard yawned, jaw gaping wide as he made his way down the street, a few other fellows walking by his side. Weary eyes stayed fixed on the street before him, the torch in his hand lighting the way, flickering in the night. His face was washed in it's red glow, needing of a shave, bristles of black scattered across his features. A bronze helmet reflected the light slightly, covering a mess of unkept hair.

He hated the night shift. Yes, thievery may have increased over the last few years, but it was typically a bland job, walking street by street, deprived of sleep. He was only fortunate he had to do this rarely; the guard on duty that night had come over with a bout of the flu. The guard could only give praises that this was only a one-night happening.

The small group eventually turned onto the street leading to the market, a small carriage down the road a ways.

Just another trader arriving late...
he thought, continuing to walk with his comrades, barely taking another glance at the cart. A sudden neigh echoed through the silent night, the guard's head snapping to the source of the noise, seeing the carriage stop, the outline of the driver hurriedly moving to it's rear. Intrigued by what was happening, he motioned for the others, briskly walking to the cart.

Just as he approached, he saw a second person move, their body slipping through the torch's stretching light for only a mere second. But a second was all the guard needed, making out what appeared to be a young girl, rushing away from the carriage, the driver oblivious to her presence. His eyes landed on the scattered apples on the road, then to the direction the girl fled.

"Halt,thief!" he yelled into the shadows, sprinting off in the direction she fled. He saw her in the glow of the torch once again, watching her slip into an alleyway, giving chase, hearing the other guard's quickened footsteps behind him. Hopefully she wouldn't be much of a trouble...

-*-

Sheffer sat on a crate, hidden in the dark of a small alley, trying to formulate what action he should take. Questions came one after the other, contemplating various ideas. Attempt to find an inn to stay the night? Find a hiding place somewhere within the city? Attempt to seek refuge in people's homes? All had negative consequences, Sheffer feeling quite indecisive.

All of a sudden, there was a racket of noise, his head snapping to the street, watching someone catch themself, a fallen crate behind them. She regained her posture, sprinting off down the street. Slightly confused, the new questions beginning to form in his mind were immediately answered, seeing a cluster of armed guards following her trail only seconds after.

He sat there for a moment, frowning. His heart did not want to see this girl captured; he heard plenty of stories and rumors from his time beyond Soran, knowing the new cruelty of the sentries positioned in the city, of how they stole and cheated the people, taking any other aggression out on small criminals who deserved much less. He had heard many things...

With a small sigh, he found himself rising, sprinting off across the street and into another alley, now estimating the girl's path. He twisted and turned through a series of alleyways from there, the brick and wood rushing by, seeing glimmers of a torch every so often. He was much faster then the guards, and the girl, easily catching up to them. Another turn into an alley, and he finally saw the girl run past, Sheffer making a small detour onto a side street.

Diving back into a narrow path between two shacks, he slid quietly across the wall, his eyes darting around. Within the lane were a few crates, most aged, some covered in a tarp. Knowing what to do, he sneaked over to the corner of the building, peering around the corner carefully...

-*-

She couldn't go much longer. The chase had lasted far too long for her stamina to last, and the guards didn't seem to be faltering by much. Either she would have to hope that they eventually give up before her, or she would be forced to fight, maybe possibly cripple one of them. Her hand already began to reach for her bow...

...but her thoughts were halted, something moving quickly to her side, feeling the grasp of a strong hand on her forearm. A scream formed on her lips, but was muffled by another hand clasping across her mouth, feeling her body pulled from the street, her vision going black. She could feel something covering her, whoever grabbed her maintaining a strong grip. Grace gave an attempt to break away, but the mysterious captor's fingers only clamped harder, keeping her still. Suddenly, she heard yells and commands, closer then she would have liked, her sight covered in red and orange for a small moment, then returning to black.

A few moments passed, feeling the grip loosen on her mouth and arm, the now apparent cloth being thrown to the side. Her head swiveled over quickly, seeing a figure already standing. It was quite obviously a man, his body tall and lean, yet his face was hidden, covered in the shadows of a drawn hood. He seemed to look down at her for a moment, then whipped around, his cloak flapping in the air as he stalked off, not saying a word.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MedliSage on Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:00 am

Feeling slightly lightheaded, Grace nevertheless was quick to her feet as the man began to walk off without so much as one word to her. At first she assumed him to be a guard that had snuck upon her, thus her initial panic, but now it was apparent to her that he had only helped her -- although she hated to have the help, much less have this stranger think that she needed help, she knew that she would feel worse if she let him go without even saying thank you. Running briefly to catch up to him, she called out for him to wait once more, making sure not to speak too loudly. When at his side, she quickly said "Uh, thank you," still slightly uncomfortable with the notion of having aid, causing her to stammer once. Nevertheless, she hoped her words were heard, maybe better yet replied to -- perhaps she could help this stranger in return. She didn't like owing favors.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sheff on Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:26 pm

Sheffer's pace paused for a moment, turning slightly to the girl. She was a good foot shorter then him, feeling his head tilt downward in the effort to find her eyes. Her green eyes caught a glimmer of the moon above, Sheffer noting a cuteness to her features... for one her age that is.

He proceeded giving her an inquisitive stare, one that was, of course, hidden by his hood and the night. He could already imagine her thoughts as he stood here, contemplating on a reply. A looming figure, face shrouded in black, not making a sound. A sight that would send shivers of fear down most people's spines, yet the girl was not phased, only giving him a hopeful stare, expecting an answer.

Sheffer frowned, not wanting to give her a sense of friendliness. The last thing he needed was this girl attempting to strike conversation, something that he did not want to do with anyone. One slip of the tongue, and she could perceive who he truly was. He sighed mentally, knowing he should at least give her some sort of reply.

He decided to keep it simple.

"You're welcome," he said gruffly, starting off again, putting the girl behind him once more. He dreaded she would follow again...

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Smithy on Thu Mar 04, 2010 1:23 am

Sly's head whipped up to the sudden comotion, realizing the worst had happened to one much like herself. A quick eye on an un-noticed guard and they'd be on your tail. No guard seemed to be un-fit and all were fair game in a chase. Shuddering Sly gazed down again but the dark figure had gone. Only by chance did she see movement in the corner of her eye. She watched as the figure ran, and ran fast away. She didn't figure she wouldn't catch up at that speed and so she didn't bother to persue. A figure like that would be noticed again.

Skipping virtually silently across the rooftops she dropped with only a tiny scrape of her shoes, and the smallest against the pavement as she jumped and swung from roof to street. Keeping to the shadows she could hear the most silent of conversation, and peeking around a corner noticed the figure and a woman. Although intrigued she slipped around the opposite corner trying best to keep from sight as she made her wa silently up the street towards her 'hideout'.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Vain on Thu Mar 04, 2010 10:34 am

The tavern door swung shut with the wind, causing a loud booming sound as Raven entered and moved towards the bar; each step caused his armor to clank on the hardwood floor. "I need a room for the night," Raven called to the barkeeper as he approached. "A room sir knight? What brings a nobleman to stay in an inn such as this?" the barkeeper asked, cocking an eyebrow. "Tis a bit of business to tend to in town my good man," Raven replied, hoping the bartender would not push the question any further than that. With any luck the man just shrugged and said,"Well its 20 drakes a night. If you've got the coin for it its yours." The old knight reached into a pouch hanging from his sword belt and tossed the man twenty coins. "Thank ye kindly sir knight, its upstairs da first room on da left." Raven nodded to the man, took his key, and proceeded up the stairs. His mind still racked on how he would find his missing liege. The old knight doubted he would be likely to run into him on the city streets, that is if he was still in the city. They only thing he could do was search. He just didn't know where to begin. He continued to think on his next plan of action as he opened the door to his room and prepared to bed down for the night.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Thyclaine on Thu Mar 04, 2010 8:34 pm

The fire crackled with a warm glow in the damp and musty workshop, scraps of wood and tools scattered around from an obvious forced entry. It used to be a nice place, a quaint workshop in the back of a typical home in the capital city, and not one that would normally have any suspicion put on it. However, the silhouette of a city guard against the white windows of the home told a different story, as did his drunken yells which rattled the loose instruments on the worktables around him.

"I know you're in here, Samuel! You're done!", the guard had screamed, almost tripping over an unfinished lute recklessly discarded during a previous struggle.

The man had "thought" he saw a shadow in the back alleys while he spent time in the pub, trying hopelessly to get away from the wife and his alcoholic son by looking for a working girl and a pint of bitter to ease the transition along, and perhaps that shadow was Sam.

Perhaps that drunken illusion quietly slipping into an empty alley was the man they had been feverishly searching for for almost 3 years, and that if he caught him, maybe he could get more time to himself and his pint of bitter, and maybe his wife and alcoholic son would "vanish" in the ensuing chaos and fanfare surrounding him, the hero of the capital.

Purely drunken illusions and ego boosting it would seem, if not for the fact that that drunken illusion quietly slipping into an empty alley was indeed Samuel Hobbes, who had made the particularly awful mistake of returning to his old hunting grounds, and his old luthier shop. Even if it was simply to gather together a few papers about Malus, he put himself at risk of being seen by the locals, and not to mention, depressed and inebriated city guards.

Another half-finished lute blocked the guard's path, and Sam winced in the darkness as it was smashed against the wall. His white knuckles gripped the papers in his hand firmly, the other hand wrapped around a string from the shop, and his eyes locked on the stumbling man in his shop. His medium-long dirty brown hair and cut face were barely visible in the moonlight, his ragged clothes brushing quietly against the rough wood interior. He was once prosperous, though the only sign of that was a gold medallion draping down from his belt. Once a happy and friendly man had been reduced to a paranoid mess due to his circumstances, with half the city hunting him down and the other half making sure the bounty hunters found him.

The guard was coming closer now, close enough to recognize where Sam was if he wasn't so drunk. It was quiet now, but soon enough, the man tripped again, this time gravity succeeding as he toppled onto a table, bringing down the structure with him. His groans of pain filled the room, but were swiftly cut short as a weight descended upon him. The lute string wrapped around his neck slowly, and pulled taut as the man's life started to drain out. His limbs flailed and he tried to scream, but there was no one around to hear him try. Eventually, his flailing stopped, and the man above slipped off and leaned against a chair. He had just killed a man. Knowing the others would realize where he went soon, Sam knew he had to escape, and fast.

But first, he had more papers to find.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MedliSage on Thu Mar 04, 2010 10:16 pm

Watching him intently as he spoke his few words, she began to wonder why he was dressed so -- she couldn't make heads or tails of his actual appearance, he was doing a good job at hiding it -- but why? Possibilities rushed through her mind, coming to a dead stop when he finally spoke. Once more the figure started to walk away from her, but she quickly caught up to him once more."Um," she said, not sure of where to begin saying her thoughts. He certainly seemed to want to avoid speaking with her, but despite her overwhelming curiosity to ask why this was, she continued to follow through with her plan to offer some sort of repayment in turn for his earlier help. Hoping he would again stop to heed her words, she began speaking once more: "Don't take offense from this," she says quickly, "I get the feeling you're trying to stay hidden," she paused, praying her suspicions were right and she didn't sound totally insane to the stranger, "but just from my short experience here -- I haven't been here long either, I'm traveling -- I don't know how far you'll get wearing something as suspicious as that. Guards here tend to stop people for the lamest reasons, just to being jerks, I guess. Just so you know. I..." She took a deep breath, her excessive pride screaming at her mind for her not to say this. "I would have been in real trouble there if it weren't for you, so, uh, if there's something you need help with... I'm sure you're here for a reason, that is. Something you might need to stay hidden for? I'd like to help you, if I can. I don't like owing favors."

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Dark Hero on Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:49 pm

A clean towel folded into one on the table and set on top of other towels. Along came another, and yet, another between each minute that passed. A pair of pale white hands pressed deeply into a towel and trailed her fingers along it, ridding it of wrinkles. She folded it and placed it aside. She would repeat this for another minute or two.

A rather short girl had a petite body to greatly support her balance and speed in this household manner. Looking about, she glanced at her new cottage. Cobwebbed ceilings and dusty walls still needed to be taken care of, but it was the least of her worries, to her anyway...

"Sable Jennings," the name would echo inside her head. A more uneasy echo followed behind, "The stranger of this town, The new person..." and so on and so forth. It was clear to her that she disliked the feeling of not being a familiar face around the kingdom of Sathran. As if moving from her homeland due to an invasion was hard enough. The echos continued to ring in her head, bringing aches of discomfort and awareness for her mental sense. Sable had only arrived here a week ago and settling in was rather difficult, especially for one just starting to live an independent life of her own. She was lucky enough to had brought a few necessary items than none at all. It was all she had until a suitable job could land on her. On top of all the stress, her cottage was rent for just a few months.

Finally, the last of her clothing material had finished as Sable tossed them away in the small bathroom. She, rather quickly, untied her strings and placed her apron on the end of a chair in the kitchen. Her daily work was done. Picking up the ends of her black, corset dress, she stepped into her boots, bending down for a brief few seconds to tie the laces. Here, she would venture out to take in the night of the kingdom. She walked over and reached for the door knob.

Pausing for a bit, she sighed, and exited the cottage...

Out into the world. The strange world.
Last edited by Dark Hero on Sun Mar 07, 2010 9:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sheff on Sun Mar 07, 2010 8:55 pm

Slight annoyance began to ripple through his body, finding himself stopping once more. The girl was persistent, and curious as well; two traits he truly did not need from a stranger. A small sigh escaped his lungs, the breath ruffling his hood as he turned to her again, feeling a slight frown form on his lips.

"Listen," he began, his voice cold. "I, in all honesty, don't care if you want to return the favor. All I want to-"

His words were abruptly cut off by a cascade of shouts and crashes, though slightly muffled. Sheffer found his hand grasping the girl's arm quickly, pulling her into the shadows of a nearby building, his eyes snapping over to the other side of the road. He could clearly see a small shop, its windows illuminated from what he believed to be a fire. Multiple shouts came from it, yet all from the same man, more crashes echoing across the street.

Curiosity taking over, he motioned for the girl to stay put, hastily moving across the street, his steps silent. Approaching the shop, he edged over to the nearest window, peering inside. What he found was a guard, obviously drunk, ransacking the interior of the building, screaming something or another about "Samuel". In his drunken state, he was managing to destroy a variety of lutes, Sheffer raising an eyebrow at the guard's apparent hatred of a now unfortunate musician.

Just as Sheffer was about to make his leave, the guard fell onto a table, another man suddenly jumping from his hiding place, proceeding to choke the guard with what appeared to be a metal string. He watched as the guard attempted to escape, but his own drunkenness worked against him, his body slowly falling limp.

Sheffer did not know what to make of the situation, somewhat shocked at how quickly the kill had occurred. He felt no pity for the guard, knowing all to well of what he had more then likely convicted in the past, but only had questions about the actual killer, who now was feverishly searching through the shop. He decided to remain in his crouched position near the window for only a moment longer, hoping to gather more information on the other...

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MedliSage on Sun Mar 07, 2010 11:45 pm

Though Grace had been watching and waiting for his response intently, her eyes seeming to light up as he began to speak, no matter how cold his tone may have been -- her head snapped in the direction of the cacophony. Her leg made a short motion to step forward and get a look at what had happened, but she gave a sharp, quiet gasp upon being pulled back by the hooded figure. She looked in the same direction as he, also spying the fire in the shop.

As she noted him beginning to walk over, she was quick to begin to indulge her own curiosity -- however, she was motioned to stay put. If he had been any other person, she would have just pushed him out of the way and gone anyway; but no, today she decided to abide by his wishes, not wanting to aggravate him; she had heard the coldness in his voice earlier, slight annoyance, too, and didn't want to beleaguer him further.

Grace watched his figure move across the street without any sort of sound. When he was far enough away, she, too, made her own silent steps in hopes of getting a better look, her curiosity overpowering her order to stay put. Without moving too far to be considered not listening to him, she made small movements to satisfy her inquisitiveness. Intently, she watched Sheffer look into a window; he seemed to be quite interested in whatever may have been happening inside, staying there for what seemed like ages. Grace, however, was not as fortunate and her curiosity was not satiated; she moved her head into a variety of different positions without straying too far from where she originally stood. She saw the occasional shadow move inside he shop, but nothing more. Sighting slightly in frustration, she returned to her spot, determined to ask what exactly had happened when Sheffer returned.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Thyclaine on Mon Mar 08, 2010 10:48 pm

Where the hell were they?

He was going insane, rooting through cabinets in the shop and tossing whatever got in his way to the side. If he didn't find those papers, it was all done. They held a summary of all the evidence he had gathered thus far, all his work for 3 years, and it was missing. The other papers would have been good enough, but a large majority were destroyed by guards and bounty hunters that had run across them. Huge gaps of missing information filled his guerilla investigation, and the master papers were all he had left.

Suddenly, an idea. Dashing into the back room, he located a small wooden box tucked away under a few scraps of iron. Pulling it out, he noticed the lock securely attached to it. The key was gone, he knew that, but if there was anywhere he put them, it would be here. Bringing up a small dagger from his belt, he stuck it under the lid and tried to wedge the lid off. After a few dozen frustrating seconds, the small lid finally popped off, revealing a small white envelope in the bottom of the container.

A grin, the first that had graced his face in weeks, formed as he picked it up, verifying it contained what he needed. Twirling the dagger absently in his fingers, he walked back into the main room to see a cloaked figure standing, thumbing through some of his papers. His hood covered most of his face normally, but Sam was at the right angle to clearly recognize his face.

It was Sheffer.

Chuckling, he raised his dagger and pointed at him, speaking before the former king retreated.

"I've been waiting a hell of a long time for you, so I suggest you don't try and run."

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Smithy on Tue Mar 09, 2010 1:13 am

On her way to her safe haven, although in a town like this in a profession like hers no place was safe. Looking forward to the cool burn of rum down her throat before she headed to her current sleeping area. Dark and secluded. She kept safely in the shadows, keeping her ears and eyes open, her body ready in case of a surprise attack.

Hearing the sudden crash and comotion coming from a shop she'd recently passed she jumped, turned. Realizing it was not upon her she took a few steps towards the brightened window of the shop but was beaten significantl by the mysterious figure she'd encountered before. Slipping quickly into the alley beside the shop she pushed her back against the wall. Silent. She kept close to the corner of the alley, listning out for movement.

She head a voice of a man, the tone seemed to echo out from inside the shop itself. A guard? Judging by the bits she'd got from his sentence she assumed so. Narrowing her eyes she peered through the darkness and around the corner, getting only a glimpse at the hooded figure before she whirled her head back in. No point in leaving the alley now, a dead end one way and if she left now the figure might suspect her of easedropping, which wasn't entirley un-true, or spying. Cursing under her breath she stayed put, stayed silent. She was technically stuck.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Sheff on Wed Mar 10, 2010 8:24 pm

Sheffer felt like a fool, now frozen-still in the center of the room. As he had been on the verge of departing, his eye caught a piece of paper, only a foot or two from his position. Only a simple piece of parchment, but what was written onto it caught his attention. His own name. As he watched the man hastily leave, curiosity drove him to slip through the window, believing the other to be gone. Just as his eyes had begun to feverishly look over the paper, he heard footsteps, and a voice.

Now, here he stood, facing the point of a dagger, the subtle threat still hanging in the air.

The man knew who Sheffer was, the fallen monarch feeling the heat of the nearby fire on his cheeks, knowing his face was enlightened by the glow. His cloak had failed him, his mind racing. What should he do? Make a dash for the door? No. The man could easily inform a guard or knight...

But you just saw him strangle one,
he thought. The man was a criminal to this city, just as Sheffer now was. He could easily become an ally, one to trust on his mission. Yet what if he attempted to turn him in, to clear whatever charges he had brought on himself? It was too much of a risk. He would need to escape.

Sheffer acted on instinct, leaping back, away from the armed man. His hand darted to his waist, his fingers wrapping around the hilt of his sword, metal sliding against metal as he unsheathed it. Now tightly gripped in his hands, he held it before him, adopting a wide stance. The dead guard now lay between them on the floor, Sheffer remaining steady, awaiting the man's move.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Dark Hero on Wed Mar 10, 2010 8:43 pm

One foot stepped in front of the other. Sable's boots tapped the dark, concrete streets carefully, hoping not to wake the sleepy kingdom. She had retrieved her robe from the rack before she had forgotten it, remembering the cold weather. A black robe covered her normal apparel, the hood at her head. A striking breeze passed by and shivering inside, she held the fabrics of the robe close to her. She was now content in her warmth.

She walked on. The dark trees stared at her from above, the leaves rustling about and falling off of every branch. It was a matter of duration in the village before she reached some small gates, closed. Sable assumed the entrance was leading to the central town. Of course with her unfamiliarity and memory slipping here and there, her assumption could always be mistaken. Temporarily pulling up one sleeve, she reached for a gate door and pushed it open, passing through the entrance. She continued to walk down the street until it all became rather familiar.

It was the town, just as she assumed so.

Now her pace decreased, instinctively creeping slowly and more tentatively along her path. She breathed deeply, maintaining her confidence and valor. She looked ahead, never turned her head for once would she have discovered a possible shadow close behind, despite a real temptation at hand. The lime lights on each side of every roadway seemed to guide her, assuring that she was safe. Every small building was as dim as the night itself. Unable to find a single one, she sighed. "Never thought everyone was out..." her inner voice spoke.

It had been a good thirty minutes or so exploring what Soran was like at night, and now was her time to tune in. Sable stood up from a bench she had been sitting on for a few minutes, letting out a silent yawn. Her feet began to move once more, keeping that same pace she had when she entered the town. Without realizing at first touch, the environmental temperatures had dropped again. Another breeze sneaked inside her robe, making her shiver and hold the fabrics closer to her cold skin. It was even more irritating whenever she felt the air touch her face. Longing to warm up inside her own cottage, she picked up her pace, focusing more on warmth than her own safety...

From a distance, a guard watched her movements. The young lady was clearly not alone in what looked like a ghost town. This guard, in dark green armor and red hair covering his neck and chin was security of the night, making sure no one was allowed to roam the dark streets. That was his own duty, his own task and mission. "Well, ye just created a violation, dear lady..." he thought to himself. Keeping his thoughts in mind, he crept up hidden behind the buildings and walked slowly towards her.

Sable looked from a distance. The small gates leading to the village were still so far away. She rubbed her face and swept strips of hair away from it. She felt the temptation to hum a soft tune. She slowly pressed down her vocal cords to allow sound. There was sound indeed, but... it wasn't a hum. Her slightly bent posture straightened as she paused to focus on this sound. Gulping, she increased her pace, her heart beating quickly behind her chest.

'Twas the sound of armored boots approaching nearby. Clink clank.

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Snowfall on Sun Mar 28, 2010 11:40 am

Katherine sat in her inn room, her elbows on the sill, her chin cupped in her hands like a small girl. She stared up at the moon, or the amount of it that she could see. She couldn't sleep, again. The night was late, dark and long; she felt anonymous. It was not a pleasant feeling. Having lived in a small town for her entire life, she was not used to the crowds, the winding streets, the unfamiliarity. She preferred to look at the shining light above it all and forget where she was. The moon was constant, and a constant reminder. Not that anything didn't remind her of him…

Unaware that she had been crying, it surprised her when she rubbed her cheek and her hand came away wet. She sighed lightly. It was no good -- tonight she could not sleep at all. She would have to go for a walk, burn off all her remaining energy, return only when she was absolutely exhausted and could fall easily into her bed. At least that way she would not have to endure the restlessness of dreams. Making up her mind, she slid a knife into her belt, pulled on her boots and swung a plain brown cloak around her shoulders in defence against the cold. She tugged her plait out of the material and crossed her room to the door, the actions coming so naturally her mind was elsewhere. There were disadvantages of being out at night, not least the strict guards that just as often created a rule as enforced an existing one. She touched the hilt of her weapon. It was there for security only, she told herself, it was unlikely she would have to use it.

She opened the door to her room, just in time to see a tall, broad man clad in dark armour step into the room opposite. She flinched back instinctively, not trusting a knight, for very valid reasons. She forced her hand not to go to her hip, to her knife. Don't look at him, don't draw attention to yourself, just wait for him to enter his room and then you can leave. Taking a step back over the threshold into her own room, she held her breath.

((I don't know if you'd realise but this is Raven. I wasn't sure if he'd actually entered his room or not, so I left it open for you, Vain)
It is truly a blight upon the aptitude of the prosing populace that a thesaurus and certificate of poets' rights have alas never yet enriched their insipid opus...
...But who am I to preach?

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Re: Viva La Vida [IC]

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Thyclaine on Sun Mar 28, 2010 3:00 pm

Sam chuckled, dropping his dagger to the floor and raising his rough hands over his head. He should've expected this kind of response, but it was a bit of a surprise nonetheless. He was hoping the monarch would remember him somehow. He recalled making a lute for the prince years ago, and personally delivering it to him. It was a stretch, but if he had remembered him, it would've been a lot easier. He probably wouldn't have had a sword tip at his throat, if nothing else. If he could use it to his advantage, he might actually end up being able to talk to him before having his throat slit, which he certainly hadn't hoped would happen this soon. Taking a step back, he raised an eyebrow at the hooded figure and nodded.

"Alright, alright. We'll do it your way."

Putting out his hand to offer a shake, he nodded once more.

"Sam Hobbes, I made a lute for you a few years back."

The cloaked man stayed where he was, only offering a faint nod.

"I remember."

Staying where we was for a moment, Hobbes let out a small "hmph" and dusted off his hand on his pantleg, visibly frustrated. Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out a piece of paper and held it up so the other man could see it in the faint candlelight.

"See this? I've known you didn't die for a looong time, sir. I'm not going to hurt you, and I'm not going to turn you in. If you want my help with whatever the hell you came to do, I'll do it, But don't treat me like a peasant."

He turned to look back towards the city, and looked back with a pained look, his voice now in a hushed and angry whisper.

"Because just like you, I used to be on top. You're on the bottom now, just like me, just like the rest of us. Unless you buckle down, you're not gonna be able to climb back up unless you get help."

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