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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Jul 2016

    Default Eevee's Carrion Crown (IC)



    AR 4711, Castaril 17th


    Clover’s Crossing had a chill in the air as a fog clung to all in sight. The sound of a wagon creaked down a trail as the face of a young man slowly became apparent through the dense fog. steered it towards the group of people. He gave them a smile as he parked the carriage in front of them and tipped his head. “Greetings, this is the transport to Ravengro. Since you are all waiting here at Clover’s Crossing I take it you are going to Professor’s funeral. If you will please climb aboard, we’ll be on our way.” He turned back and started down the road once they were all aboard. “Unusual for a fog like this to be hanging around around midday. Same with this chill in the air, I could have sworn it would have been a sunny day.” He commented as he huddled into himself, trying to stay warm. “Shame of what happened to the old Professor.” The young man with cropped brown hair said from the front of the carriage turning back to speak to the group of travelers. “It’s the talk of the town, with how his suicide was and all.” He turned back as a small town came into sight. “We’re coming up on the town now. I’ll drop you off at the graveyard where Kendra Lorrimor, the Professor's daughter should be waiting for you. My name is Nichol Bate and I am a representative of Councilman Hearthmount. He is the one who will be reading the will and he will most likely be at the burial himself. He is an old friend of Professor Lorrimor’s and insisted on being at the burial himself.” The young man looked around the graveyard before spotting a woman with their back turned to them, wearing black full length dress as her hair fell down her back, cascading into curls just above her waist. “Ah, there she is. Hello Kendra, I brought some guests.” The man gave a smile as he swept his hand out gesturing to the group standing beside him. “If you will excuse me…” He gave a small bow of his head as he turned and walked back to his carriage and departed.

    “Thank you Nichol, I appreciate this.” Kendra turned to look over the group, a smile appearing on her face as she thought about who they might be “Welcome, you all must be the ones my father called for.” She said in a friendly tone as she dabbed at her moistened cheeks and straightened herself in front of her present company. “I’m glad that all of you could make it. I hate to ask this so soon after your travels but could I ask you all to serve as pallbearers?” Her voice softened at the question but her eyes held a hopeful gleam in them.



    Last edited by Almighty Eevee; 2016-11-08 at 10:22 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Sep 2016
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    'Murica
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    Female

    Default Re: Eevee's Carrion Crown (IC)

    Lilla peers around in the fog at the other people gathered here while waiting for the wagon that is supposed to take her to Ravengro. I suppose it makes sense that I wouldn't be the only one making my way to the Professor's funeral... he must have touched many lives. Once the wagon arrives and the man driving it addresses them, she nods in affirmation to his query and climbs aboard.

    She doesn't comment at the fog, though she hopes it isn't a sign of things to come. Fog, spirits... while she realizes it's a bit silly to be superstitious, she has spent enough time in the company of spirits to know that even the most elaborate falsehoods can be based on kernels of truth. Her eyes widen at hearing more details about the Professor's death. The messenger never told me that it was a suicide... could it really be? She doesn't respond to the talk, instead mulling over how strange it was that the Professor, whom she knew to be a positive force, would choose that way to go.

    Such thoughts are still going through her head as the man introduces the girl, and she quickly banishes them to turn her attention to Kendra. Noticing her tears, Lilla offers her a warm smile. "It's lovely to meet you, Kendra, though I'm sorry for the unfortunate circumstances. My name is Lilla. Your father wrote about you once or twice in his letters to me. I'd be honored to help with the proceedings in any way that I can."
    Last edited by Ceralune; 2016-11-13 at 01:13 PM.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Oct 2016

    Default Re: Eevee's Carrion Crown (IC)

    Cloaked in both the cold fog and a brown shawl, one of the many new arrivals lightly stepped off the wagon, the change in weight causing a minor creak as she slid down to the ground. With a shake of the head, the woman threw her hair out of her face, revealing a melancholic collection of pale skin and runic inks that happened to be the elf's face. For the moment, she seemed to ignore the people around her, looking into the virtually invisible skies while she pulled her back and bound it with string into a pony tail with her agile finger work.

    It was then that she returned her eyes to the damp earth and her fellows who surrounded her, which was a change of pace considering her quiet ignorance of any speech during the carriage ride to the funeral. On any other day, discourse would've been enjoyable, but she understood that there were some days that she would have to restrain herself for the sake of her own and others' emotions.

    She turned her inwards focus onto Kendra, a face that was familiar to her in the seas of faces that were quite the opposite, and nodded her head in response to her greeting, responding with "It is good to be here, and to see you, even if it is for such a sad occasion."

    For the moment, she seemed to ignore the mention of suicide, as to her, it seemed like idle chatter or false information at best. There was no real reason for the man, her mentor, to have committed suicide. Why would he? He was well loved, as obvious by those who had gathered here, and he was an academic of fame that most would recognized. Tessa had long arrived to the conclusion that it was a natural death, for he was an old fellow in a country of death, and the Gift of Man would haunt anyone at his age.

    Upon hearing Kendra's request, she once again nodded her head solemnly, and said "My honor would be to do as such. I do want to see him one last time, and to lower him to great beyond is just such a way."

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Orc in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Apr 2016
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    UK
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    Default Re: Eevee's Carrion Crown (IC)

    Imull sat in silence for the duration of the ride. He hadn't thought that the professor would commit suicide, but he hadn't see him in a while, so maybe something had happened, but it didn't seem right to gossip about it, so he said nothing.

    Once the wagon had stopped, he clambered down, and hugged himself to ward off the chill. "I'm sorry for your loss. I will help in anyway I can... If you're sure there isn't someone else you'd rather have help."

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    forg99rules's Avatar

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    Dec 2015

    Default Re: Eevee's Carrion Crown (IC)



    Standing in the fog was an eerie feeling, The chill in the air making the hairs on her arms stand on end. She wasn't sure exactly why she was feeling the way she was. Nonetheless she pulled her cloak closer to herself and snuggled up against her Bison for warmth. Cooing to him slightly to keep him calm as the unnatural fog was slightly spooking him. Looking around at the others that had gathered here she wondered if they to had been invited to the Professor's funeral. The letter that she had received didn't make any mention of any others that would be invited. All it had told her was that she was being requested to attend the funeral, the reading of his will and the location for her to meet up with a carriage that would take her to Ravengro. "God when is the transport going to get here, this fog feels unnatural and i sure would love to get out of it." yet, no sooner than the thought which had begun to cross her mind did she hear the creaking of a wagon heading their way. Looking towards the sound she is excited to see the wagon coming out of the fog. Looking down at her bison, "Wonder if that is our ride, What ya think Choar?" The bison giving a grunt and shiver in response to her inquiry. The wagon came to a stop in front of them being a welcomed sight for her as it was most likely their ride. The young man providing the information that it was indeed the ride and that the others were also here for the funeral calmed down her nerves just a bit. Taking her time to make sure that Choar was secured to the wagon before they headed out, she gave him a pat on his side, "Only a bit more to go and we will be in Ravengro my old friend." Taking her seat on the wagon she made sure that she would still have visual on her friend that was tied to the back.

    Ravengro, It had been a few years since she had been to it. The first time she came she had traveled with the Professor and they had taken a boat to cross Lake Lias. The job he needed her for wasn't particularly a hard one, he just needed her to get rid of a few pieces of evidence that would make people hate him even more than some already did. Still though it had taken the better part of a day to get from Tamrivena to Ravengro. Hunkering down to keep the chill out she listens to the idle chatter of the driver. Looking at him she couldn't figure out exactly why he would decide to travel the roads of Ustalav alone. Especially in a thick fog like they were traversing now, Ustalav was dangerous enough during the day when there was no fog. At night or in a fog like this you couldn't be sure exactly what was out there waiting for you.

    At the mention of the Professors death having been a suicide she couldn't help but scoff at the idea. More likely that the Professor had been killed by one of the many enemies that he had made while he was living. Nonetheless she would still ask to see the scene of his death, hopefully it would clear up exactly what had caused his death. Turning her head towards the driver she was about to scold him for even thinking that it was a suicide when she suddenly sees the town come into view. "What the F*ck, didn't we just leave Clover's Crossing not long ago, How are we already here?" She begins to look around a bit frantically as she watches the town get closer. She looks back towards Choar ensuring that he is still tied to the wagon and following. Glad that nothing appeared to have happened to him she still can't shake the feeling that something just isn't right.

    Stopping in front of the Cemetery, she quickly jumps out of the wagon and unties Choar from it putting the rope back into her pack as she whistles for him to follow her. Keeping him close as to not lose him in the fog she follows the man, she now knows as Nichol, into the graveyard towards Kendra who was waiting for them. Finding her standing in the graveyard with this eerie fog still permeating around them, made her even more nervous than she had been before. Having been passed off to Kendra, she watches as Nichol turns around and makes his way back to the wagon. "Anyone else find it odd how quickly we got here? Should have taken us at least most the day yet here we are as if no time had passed on that trip." Turning her attention back to Kendra, "Nice to see you again Kendra, I don't believe we were properly introduced the last time. My name is Siniti Aarka, your father hired me quite a bit to clean up his... messes and for a few other jobs. As for being a pallbearer i would be honored to have the position. Onto a different matter now, Nichol had said that this was a suicide. Would it be possible for me to take a look at the body and the location that he had died at? I just can't see the professor having killed himself, and with the kind of work I do I tend to be able to see things that other do not when it comes to scenes of death."

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Mornings's Avatar

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    Nov 2014
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    Outside

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    As with seemingly all important and precious things - the dispatched courier came at a most inopportune time. The news scrawled upon the small parchment carried with it a weight and levity the young man could not begin to understand. Perhaps the last true line of defense against all things nameless and undying had fallen - Professor Petros Lorrimor was dead. He could clearly recall the dismal gray of the sky that day, accompanied by the somber patter of rain. The monotone colors of Lepidstadt seemed to be bled away beneath the misty haze which choked the city below. The warped glass from the hand-blown pane upon the windowsill stood before his gaze and twisted the image, elongating and distorting the bleak sight. It was fitting perhaps, misshapen and crude. Perhaps the world was like that now... churning, twisting something out of place. It was as if something had been let loose, an evil now free. Not unlike The Whispering Way, but something more fundamental, psychological. There wasn't anyone to stand against what lay in the forgotten recesses beneath the earth, and that thought was something which brought Professor Lucian much disquiet.

    He could not idle, nor find rest, even during these late hours. He paced back and forth in the lavish room, the warmth and cackle of the hearth's fire had gone unnoticed. His skin felt damp and cold. The thoughts raced in his mind as his gaze occasionally fell back upon the thick vellum of the letter and the glittering red wax seal placed upon its interior. His wild thoughts would not relent. He'd heard nothing. Seen, nothing. The Palatine Council did not contact him, and he had not received any word or order in nearly 9 months. It had been silent, and now this. Had they discovered him? It was the worst possible conclusion. Professor Brays knew of course, but that little fact had been a closely guarded secret between them - an olive branch extended betwix two men who found themselves in a constant and unrelenting contest of wills and wits. At each end, one man sought to always outmaneuver the other, and he had always been three steps ahead in this cosmic game of chess. Yet, he could not deny his rivals cunning. Had he been fooled, what had he missed? He couldn't know. While he couldn't place his tormented thoughts upon a true answer, he could not afford to act carelessly. Precautions had to be taken. The boy, Barial McAlaster; a well-to-do courier quite well-known and generally liked, was not an object of scorn for him. In truth he liked the boy, but he'd been caught in something much larger than himself. The ache in his broken knuckle where he'd struck the young man reminded him of that.

    He couldn't allow the lad to go, potentially knowing what he knew. So he dropped the lad with a stern blow to the jaw that left him in a heap. By now, his men should have finished drowning the boy in the lake and sinking the body in the murky depths. It was the closest thing to assurance he could find. He didn't need any soul walking about that knew more than he rightfully should, unless he'd some evidence to trust that soul would keep quiet. Lucian wasn't a man of good-faith, and his trust was not easily earned. Not when a handful of silver for a sharp knife and canvas sack was far cheaper, and provided a far greater assurance than mere trust. He shook his head, the years had made him... colder. His voice didn't shake, and his hands were steady, ordering the death of a boy old enough to be his son. Yet, he felt... nothing. Not the tingling sensation of doubt, nor the weight of guilt. This was business. He moved back towards the simple wooden night-stand, glaring down upon letter. His promise, broken. He'd covered tracks, lied, cheated, and worse for the professor. An agreement struck in the name of mutual gain: to uncover answers buried too far for men to grasp. Lorrimor had been the means to an end, but just the same, he'd become something of... a friend. He fully expected he'd have to murder the professor in time, but for now, in the present, it wasn't so bad. Or so he'd once believed. Now however, someone, or perhaps something had killed the man before he'd caught wind of those conspiring against him could even be received. What secrets had they managed to steal from his venerable mind? What truths, best left forgotten had been unearthed. Who did it, and to what end? Oh, he had to know. He grasped the letter, ripping It to pieces before casting it into the dancing flames of the hearth. It was time to go...






    The road bucked and tossed him about in the rear of the heavy wagon. There was little in terms of a firm hold. Only the loosely scattered furs laying about with barrels and crates. Arbella's route took her directly past Clover's Crossing as she made her way to Chastel. A back-ally route they'd secured through the Shudderwood they used to smuggle pesh south to Caliphas served as an expeditious highway to his destination. The rough-handed old man had a scarred and worn face which seemed to contrast his fine suit. He could have passed as a gnarled Mendevian Crusader in retirement. When he and Bella were together, they made quite the motley host, singing grim Sczarni Songs just as boisterous as two grinning thieves. Lucian reviewed his records and tomes for answers, struggling to concentrate over the the wild-woman and spirited gray-haired geezer's songs as he wildly played his fiddle. They both sung out in Skald with perfect harmony as they made their way under the cover of darkly shaded trees. They'd been doing this for too long;


    "Hush jetzt Kreatur, trockne deine Augen."
    "Ich kenne einen Ort, an dem sich ein Körper verstecken kann."
    "Ooh, ich kenne einen Ort, wo sich ein Körper verstecken kann!"

    "Als ich dich das letzte Mal sah, war unser Tisch nackt."
    "Wenn Sie sich beeilen und mich begleiten, werde ich Sie dort führen."
    "Sink unter das Wasser, sinkt in die Tiefe,"
    "In einem Teich gerade weg von der Straße, die diesen schlammigen Nebenfluss speist."
    "Ooh, in einem Teich gerade weg von der Straße, die diesen schlammigen Nebenfluss speist!"

    "Obwohl ich weg bin, fürchte mich nicht,"
    "Wir sehen uns einmal wieder auf dem Fluß."
    "Das Krächzen der Frösche führt Sie wahr,"
    "Tragen Sie einen Rock aus grünem Stein, so weiß ich, dass Sie es sind."
    "Tragen Sie einen Rock aus grünem Stein, um Sie zum Blau zu ziehen."

    "Obwohl meine Tage vorbei sind,"
    "Du weißt, wo ich sein werde,"
    "Schwimmen, dass der Fluss zu mir verloren..."

    "Obwohl meine Tage sind fertig,"
    "Das Wasser wird immer laufen,"
    "Finde den verlorenen Fluss ... finde mich!"


    Spoiler: Translation (Skald > Common)
    Show
    "Hush now creature, dry your eyes."
    "I know a place where a body can hide."
    "Ooh, I know a place where a body can hide!"

    "Last time I saw you, our table was bare."
    "If you hurry & join me, I will lead you there."
    "Sink beneath the water, sink into the deep,"
    "In a pond just off the road, that feeds this muddy creek."
    "Ooh, in a pond just off the road that feeds this muddy creek!"

    "Though I'm gone, don't be afraid,"
    "We'll meet again on the river someday."
    "The croak of the frogs will lead you true,"
    "Wear a skirt of greenstone, so I know it's you."
    "Wear a skirt of greenstone, to drag you to the blue."

    "Though my days are over,"
    "You know where I'll be,"
    "Swim that lost river to me..."

    "Though my days are done,"
    "The waters will always run,"
    "Find that lost-lost river… find me!"

    Lucian glared over the top of his book at the fool's merriment, "Enough songs, we're too close to the edge of the wood for your nonsense. Any more of that and you'll be taken for some venerable highwayman - we don't need that kind of trouble right now." He'd prided himself in being a man with a cool-head and calm, calculated reasoning - the inverse of Ayala, and exactly what his men needed. Yet, that had changed in the recent years. The blight had tainted his mind and temperament. Quick to anger, and far more careless than the man he'd been only a year ago. He had to find a cure. No, he needed to find a cure. He wasn't sure he could overcome the darkness brewing within him, it was sinking in, bleak claws flaying his thoughts and consciousness. If he lived... He couldn't be sure he'd still be the man he knew. Lorrimor was the first man, the only man, who believed the disease could be overcome - that even with his acute and terminal case, there was a chance. He fought against the mental pangs. The pressure behind his right eye made him twitch visibly as he closed his eyelids to refocus. "My apologizes Don- " the solidly built studious-man nearly lept up from his seat as he snapped with a sharp retort "It's Lucian!" The old man covered his mouth at the slip, a force of habit he'd refrained from for nearly two years. The youthful man, sighed with a breath of warm smoke and mist birthed from both the chill, and a burning flame sizzling within his breast. "...Don't make that mistake again, or I will not be so quick to forgive your slip of the tongue. Bella, stop distracting him. We each have our own duties, see them fulfilled." The woman nodded silently and they pressed forward without another word.

    The heavy wagon came upon the edge of the dark forest's canopy, the burnt remains of the village of Clover's Crossing hung ominously in the distance. He grimaced at the sight of the ruined village as Bella brought the vehicle to a halt. She glanced over her shoulder nervously, "Boss, we're not actually, going in there are we?" He shook his head as he climbed from out of the wagon, landing with a heavy step into the moist moss covered soil. "No, Bella. We are not. That place isn't fit for the living... Not after what Sir Veraine released within that place." The woman shivered visibly at the thought of the wretched creatures with slithered beneath the burnt debris of that profane place. "This is where we part. Finish your business, we will handle the rest. I expect It will be at least another day before we cross the river and reach Ravengro, await for my word. I'll send correspondence back to the University within a week. She nodded and gestured at the grim faced old man "Take care of the Boss, old man." She snapped the reins and took off back on route along the edge of the forest. He'd practically raised the young half-drow himself, and with great aid, allowed her the means to pass seemingly unnoticed as another human. He grinned to himself. If nothing else, he felt he'd left something decent in this world. She was wild and free, but she didn't inherit the darkness that burned within him. For that, he was glad. He could never allow himself to bare children, he could never allow his cursed blood to run freely in this world. He'd do anything to stop it. Anything.

    He pulled out the large heavy leather apron of his trade. Stains of blood still soaked patches but didn't betray the woven steel chain and plates running beneath its surface, despite the wear of its age. He donned the 40 pound garment and produced a series of straps and buckles from his traveling sachel. Gerald assisted him in setting the buckles into the thick bands and fastening them over the protective garment, being sure not to disturb the fine wool of his crimson vest. After several minutes of refitting his garments and fixing the wide straps through loops and fittings upon the dense apron, he adjusted his black cravat. The tarnished vestment took much of its inspiration and function from armored coats sometimes worn with House livery by various squires and knights oft found within the northern regions of the nation. The practice had become increasingly popular in Vieland as mounting tension between the barons of The Palatinates and Soivoda. He clenched his teeth at the thought. It had been that very cold-war which had spurred the war being fought in the shadows, and thus empowering men like Professor Brays... Empowering men, like those who sat upon The Palatine Council of Defense. It was almost humorous how the desperation of miserable old men could hold such influence. How it could birth forth such evil, and find a young child somewhere displaced upon stones steps some four decades past. Yes, it had been them. The evidence he'd sought for so long. The evidence he'd fought for, killed for... and worse. Lorrimor gave it all to him on a silver platter. The journals contained within them such despicable acts... Had he not been upon its receiving end, he would never have been able to begin to fathom such torment. What does it take to compel a man to perform such atrocities? Pride? Patriotism? Freedom? Loyalty? Such trivial things, yet in their shadow-war of independence, nothing was sacred. He would never be able to look upon the Steel-Steward Orphanage again. He could feel his hands begin to shake just approaching the streets which led towards it. Thus, visits to Caliphas would more often-than-not, prove quite painful. The many years hadn't diminished the visions or memories of friends long departed. His ears and mind were still plagued by their deafening chorus; The screaming of dying children.

    He picked up the heavy gray woolen coat, pulling it over the bloodied-armored apron and lining it so it fell gracefully in line with his vest. It was a sharp, large collared trench-coat with fine double-breasted buttons caste in silver with the University's seals laid in their center. Common apparel for Professors at Lepidstadt University. Donning the winter-wear over the intimidating garment made for less worried looks and questions; he hated needless attention. Digging out his matching wool Gatsby cap, he ran a hand through his deep blue hair before placing it snugly on his head. The winter-chill wasn't going to get any better the closer they came to the rivers and lakes running west. He nodded at the seasoned old man. That face didn't belong on a man in such finely tailored apparel. Though his long gray hair was neat and well combed, one could easily imagine a wild shock of silver running wild from his brow, stained with gore. Perhaps, battling some terrors spawned out from the Worldwound. His proud stature and strong back was evidence of a life lived on the field, not an office. Yet, he'd found another way. He'd made a new life for himself, braving the dangers of managing the hours of a schedule, instead of beating back ravenous demons with a steel-clad fist. Lucian smiled to himself as they made their way towards the ruins of the town. He'd known the old Inquisitor for some 30-odd years, he'd seen the man get older, more fierce... then tame. The black of his mane was barely visible now, while he himself barely seemed to change at all. The Inquisitor was 'gone' now, the days of hunting cultists and witches was long since over.

    It was amazing how having a family could change a man. He doubted the seasoned warrior could even hold his own in battle anymore. Age, and lack of practice had made his hands soft and his arms feeble compared to those days past. "If it comes to it, back off and I'll take care of risen-dead. Just keep your eyes open... You of all people remember what happened in this place." The old man nodded sternly. Clover's Crossing was a ruin; a village of the dead. The citizen's had all been killed in what was thought to have been a resurgence of undead in the area spawning forth dozens of ghouls which led to the massacre and eventual 'purging' of the city. The fire didn't solve the problem, but it did contain it, to a degree. Remaining outside of the town's limits was somewhat safe; in that you'd be less likely to have a rotting creature rend your limbs from your body. Yet, but far more evil things dwelt within the ruins of the decaying village's remains. He pushed one of the long cuts running up the side of his coat aside to leave the heavy sledge-hammer anchored to his waist readily available. The translucent-crystalline green and silver of the strange tool's make begun to glitter, a shimmering sparkle, as if a firefly had been caught within the tool's head spiraled off to dance about. He covered it back up with his coat, confident he could withdraw the weapon in an instant if the need arose. He didn't need to trade words, the dead owned this place now.

    The two men walked side-by-side with an air of daring and confidence. The field before them led up to the decimated village before being crossed by the small dirt road which still led into the ruined gates of Clover's Crossing. His eyes quickly scanned through the mist and damp grassy fields until the sight of a carriage pulling up to a small gathering of peoples came into view outside the town's premises. "How fortuitous..." The salty old man pat Lucian on the back, "Aye, so it is. Now move with a quickness, least we be left in this terrible place." Dashing off to the transport brought their driver and a handful of strange, or otherwise unknown faces into view. He visibly cringed at the lot. He knew well enough that Lorrimor kept strange company, company he thought best to keep an arms length away from. The thought of traveling days with a band of strange-freakish acquaintances of a departed friend was not a pleasant notion. His nostrils flared in quiet disdain. He looked up at the young man, shaking his head. "...I'll need to have a discussion with whoever organized this little randevu when this is over. Their choice of locale happens to be exceptionally terrible. No doubt, the product of failed logistics. Regardless of that fact it's the closest thing on the map or not, there is a reason people don't actually come here."

    He curtly boarded the wagon, pausing for a second to look at the odd assortment of creatures inside up-close. He squinted, not sure what to make of the scene. Within the interior of this small enclosed space were a wide range of persons - and potentially animals, which essentially did not exist on this side of the world. Doubly so in Canterwall, or Ustalav at all with the degree of racial intolerance which choked the northern nations of The Palatinates. He was, as far as he could tell, the only citizen of The Immortal Principality present. The old man behind him placed a hand upon his shoulder to bring him back to his senses, and he finally noticed the young man amongst the foreign or alien creatures which were packed inside like some sort of zoo. He knew an Ustalavian when he saw one. His image was seemingly iconic of one of his students, and the mark upon his cheek could have almost been a 'Lepidstadt Scar'. He sat next to Imull, leaving him to his silence. If he was surrounded by this many absurdities while alone, he wouldn't want to hold a conversation either. He looked up towards their driver shaking his head. "The mist is quite normal this close to the Vistear River during this time of the year. It will likely clear before we reach Ravengro, though the town will no-doubt be shrouded as well simply due to its placement on Lake Lias." The driver's word's caught him off-guard. Suicide? Lorrimor had an abundance of perfectly able-bodied murderers and criminals eager to put a knife in his back, he didn't need any assistance dying. He had to fight every day just to keep himself from being murdered by violent-greedy men, or worse. He ran his hands down his face, pushing his hat out of place, before having to re-adjust it. Yes. He was sure of it now; This young man was an idiot. He was glad he wasn't one of his student's, or he might just toss him out a window into the Moutray's chilling water. He made a mental note of this supposed benefactor. He clearly didn't understand what a representative looked like, or what purpose they actually held.

    His respect for the man was plummeting by the minute. It didn't take much longer than a minute or two of dialogue before he resolved simply begin ignoring everything that came out of the daft-lad's mouth. A far better solution to the alternative, which his mind's eye portrayed in dramatic fashion; straddling the boy and punching him in the face a great deal of times. He took mental note of that thought. Self diagnosing. No doubt, evidence of further nervous damage and psychological regression of his mind into a more primitive state to bare the strain of the corrosive effects upon his cognitive functions. Perhaps, 10 months. He hypothesized he had at least that long left to live, or at least until he was overcome completely by the Stain. He would need to make the most of the time he had left... He leaned forward in his seat, planting his elbows into his knees. He wasn't sure he was going to retain his sanity in this sweat-box without breaking someone's face. The pangs of mindless anger were buried deep, like fragments of glass splintered off into the cranial matter of his consciousness. The boy's passing comment went by unheard, for indeed the lad was nothing more than a boy to him. His own son would have nearly been twice this dimwit's age had things been different. There was no such way to cover nearly 50 miles of road in what was presumably an ordinary carriage so quickly. The old man glared out through the thick mist, his eyes going wide in shock and horror - "...Impossible!"

    Regaining himself, Lucian looked up at his old friend. "Faust, what is it?" The silvered man looked down at the professor truly at a loss for words. "...We're, here?" The professor sighed profoundly, he'd ceased trying to piece together the strangeness of his own country. Where there was death and the unknown, dwelt evils or magics of a likeness that could not be named. There were only an infinite number of explanations. They were close enough to Gallowspire, anything could happen. For all he knew, the transport was magic. He glanced up at the orc, or half-orc, if he had a mind for political correctness - He didn't have a mind for political correctness. They were in Ravengro, this far in Canterwall, no one had any love for Greenskins. Yet, she seemed like the most astute of the disheveled crew. He stood with a sigh as the rest of them begun to disembark. "Quite observant, orc. Evidently our company is less familiar with our locale, or they'd think it was just as curious. Not worth the effort trying to understand, there's far stranger to be found this close to Virlych. That's why people don't go there." The last bit came off sharply with a measure of frustration at the unexpected development. He didn't like being toyed with. He nodded at the lad as he dismounted last, leaving the others to perform their greetings as they pleased before he approached from the rear.

    He didn't know what he wanted to say, what he needed to say. Returning here, to this small village was as unexpected a development as Lorrimor's own death. The assurences he'd put into place, the promises he'd made to him, all of it. It had all been made worthless so quickly. But one still remained, one he'd made to Kendra long before he'd even met Lorrimor. He'd be there when he was needed most. Lucian didn't break his promises, not to himself, not to others, not even to the very soil he tread. So he came back. It had been over a year since he'd last seen the woman's face, but he'd come back. Even though he was dying. Even though his mind was awash in this sea of suffering. Even though his very self was standing before a terrible maelstrom with a devil bursting out from the broken ribs of his breast. He came back. He wasn't sure what he'd become if he remained here, in place of beginning his sojourn back to Caliphas in search of the cure... He might lose himself. But that is why he had brought Faust. If it came to it, he would ensure his duty to Kendra was fulfilled - that she was safe.

    He couldn't be sure that he'd come back again from the throes of death. The next time, he might not even be as the man he knew. There were things far worse than death, and he knew each of them by name. He knew Lorrimor, and had sided with him even against Vieland's Palatine Council and Professor Brays's influence. He'd walked a thin knife for the man, as thin as any. His studies, his occupation, it all carried with it an inherent risk which threatened to devour him.; and he was careless. The pursuit of answers always had outweighed the dangers or threat. There was not the slightest sliver of doubt in his mind; this was not a suicide. He knew well enough, even if it actually had been, on a basic and fundamental level he could not, would not, ever believe it. Even if the disembodied ghost of Lorrimor admitted it to his face. That was not the man he knew. No. That man, had been murdered. He approached Kendra, moving through the small gathering with a soft smile on his face. He didn't speak. He had nothing to say that could ease that pain she felt. He pulled a handkerchief from his breast-pocket and wiped the tears from her soft cheeks. His face was rigid, fighting back the swelling behind his eyes at the sight of the woman he cared so much for brought to tears. He pulled her close into an embrace, his voice low, no more than a whisper to shield his speech.

    "...I promise you. I'll make them pay for this."




    Last edited by Mornings; 2016-11-09 at 08:10 PM.

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    Inwardly marveling at the diversity among those who turned out for Petros' funeral, Azarath remained silent until the rest of the gathered had spoken and Kendra's eyes had fallen on him at last. They were the same eyes he had seen all those years ago, though there was a different kind of sadness in them now. He took a solemn step towards her and spread both arms, as if to embrace her. Something held him back, though, and he hesitated before continuing with just his right arm and placing it on her left shoulder as a sympathetic gesture. "I am sorry for your loss, Kendra, but I am proud to see the woman who has come from the girl all those years ago." Azarath ruffed his shadowed feathers with an involuntary shiver and took a quick step back.

    "I'm afraid I didn't know Petros as well as you all seem to have. I had an opportunity to get a larger sense of him, but never seemed to find the time to be able to do so... I was in place to assist Kendra here out of a horrific situation a number of years back." Azarath locks his gaze on Kendra and gives her a small smile. "If I can assist in any way, I would be honored to."

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    Kendra looked to the three that stepped off the cart first, looking over the man and the elf before giving a small nod. “Thank you both for coming and for your condolences. I’m sure my father would have wanted it this way. He always had a way of remembering those he worked with, no matter how much time it had been.” She then turned her gaze to the blonde woman and managed a hint of a smile. “Pleasure to meet you, Lilla. I hope my father said good things about me.” Whatever words she was about to say next, died in her throat as she spotted the green skin of the half-orc. Her posture stiffened as her mouth was set into a thin line. “P-Pleasure to meet you Sintri. I would prefer that my father’s casket stay closed, I would like to keep the memory of when I had last seen him and not of...how he is now. Regardless of what history you and my father have, I think it would be best if it were to stay in the past. I assumed you all had set out the day prior since it is a day's travel, Did something hap-”
    Her words once more died off in her throat, though for a reason entirely different this time. She saw him. Everyone else faded away, the closer he got to her. Her breath caught as he pressed the handkerchief to her cheeks, almost bringing forth a new rush of tears until he embraced her. The water behind her eyes stopped as her head rested on his chest and his low words, brushed over her ears. A soft smile reached her face as she wrapped her arms around his, melting into his embrace and dropped her tone to match his. “Thank you…Lucian” Her voice caught for a moment as she started to pull away, noticing there was another passenger dismounting from the vehicle. “It’s been a long time Azarath. Thank you for coming, I haven’t seen you for, oh about 15 years? I don’t think I ever thanked you for what you did back then, nor do I think I could forget.” He laid a hand over the one that was on her shoulder and gave it a gentle squeeze remembering her past with the Tengu. Her gaze dropped to the closed casket as her smile vanished once more. “I know my father would have been delighted to see you all again. Father Grimburrow is waiting at the grave plot with two gravediggers. Shall we go?”
    Last edited by Almighty Eevee; 2016-11-11 at 09:05 PM.

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    Lilla gently nods. "But of course. If I may?" She asks the question as she approaches a corner of the casket. She stares at it for a moment, as it sinks in that the man who helped to bring her out of her darkest moment had disappeared beyond the veil, leaving behind only his former shell and the people who knew him.

    May you rest in peace, Professor. Her fingers brush against the casket's surface briefly. Lilla then takes a deep breath and helps to hoist it up with the others, prepared to bear its weight.
    Last edited by Ceralune; 2016-11-13 at 01:13 PM.

  10. - Top - End - #10
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    He tried to gingerly smile as he felt her pull away from his embrace. The warmth, like that of his heart, begun to slowly diminish. He could still feel her in his arms, but it was as real as the precious memories he still held and cherished. The vision in his right eye begun to blur. He shook his head, managing a smirk at Gerald though his face had begun to go numb. The feeling had slowly begun to fade to the sensation of an itching-tingling under his eye-lids and the tip of his nose. He fought back the experience and the dizzying rush that clouded his senses. Not now. He pat the old man on the shoulder, speaking quietly "I just... need a moment."

    He motioned to Kendra, "It's been a few years, but you might remember my old friend Doctor Gerald Faust. He begun serving as my primary assistant after your graduation." He cringed as he felt his balance tip upon its side, the sensation of vertigo seeping into his mind. He looked down upon the polished surface of the casket. Within its reflection he could see himself. The side of his face which had already gone numb was tensed, and a line of moisture ran down his face. The loss of control had stimulated the tear glands in his eye. But to the layman, it looked as if he had begun to weep. The blue color in his right iris had slowly begun to bleed away, leaving it white-gray.

    His hand snapped up to face in shock, attempting to cover his eyes and play it off as a sudden bout of woe. He could manage to explain a lesser degree of symptoms as acute ocular rosacea. But not this... "I... I need a second." He turned away, doing well not to stagger as he walked around the other side of the carriage. He wiped his face dry and looked at his reflection again the metal polish on the exterior of the vehicle. He inspected himself curiously. A possible Corneal edema. It was unusual, but not unheard of- his vision begun to clear, filling him with sudden alarm.

    His eye had become a dark gray, but small black tissues seemed to emerge in the lymphatic membranes of his eye. ...Impossible. There hadn't been enough time for these kinds of cells to develop. Had the other afflictions somehow accelerated the Stain? He couldn't be sure without extensive tests, but he was far from his laboratory. He cursed under his breath, he could feel his senses rocking from side to side. He took a seat, sliding down on the steps of the carriage and tried to place his head between his knees to regain his sense of balance. He fought back the panic with calm and rational self-diagnosis. This was simply Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. The calcium carbonate of the otolith particles would be frequently disturbed due to his unusual circumstances. This was nothing. He didn't have the proper medication on him to provide a more permanent solution, but he wasn't completely unprepared.

    He dug into his traveling bag, producing an exceptionally finely carved pipe. The highly polished black-and-white burled ebony was engraved and inlaid in silver with his initials; 'BTL'. He sprinkled and packed in a number of medicated leaves of tobacco and pulled out an elaborately engraved lighter. Depictions of wondrous celestial winged creatures wielding spears with countless impaled demons and nameless atrocious creatures decorated its exterior. He flipped it open with his thumb and pressed down on the device's steel button, causing a flame to spring to life. The blue torch-like fire lit the leaves. He took a test smoke of the pipe to ensure it properly lit before snapping the lighter closed and pocketing it.

    A long draw from the device steadied his nerves. The roiling sensation begun to subside. This wasn't good. The accelerated changes in his body were something he hadn't foreseen. He could only come to one determination. He had less time than he had thought. His physical body was becoming stronger, more resilient than a normal man; yet his health continued to wane. The muscular development and density in his skeletal structure was almost superhuman, he could throw himself out a second-story window head-first and the impact itself would cause little harm. Though wounds incurred independently of the blunt trauma would be suffered normally, they could heal at an astounding rate.

    He took a long pull from the pipe, breathing the smoke out in a puff of bitter mint-scented clouds. They'd measured his rate of healing somewhere between eight-hundred, and one-thousand times that of a normal adult male. The cells would self-regenerate, but illness and disease went uncured, and he found he was far more prone to contracting illness than a healthy adult. His immune system had been weakened considerably. The regenerative principles of his cells seemed to only function during periods of hyper-activity when over-stimulated. The cause had yet to be determined, but Doctor Thrice had a number of varying hypothesis based upon the observations of both his unusual blood-vessels and the blood cell's adaptation to the transfusion. He believed at the matter's heart, this was the reason he'd even survived the procedure at all. His body was in a state of constant damage and self-repair. New cells were replacing the old, providing new adaptations to the life-stealing inkor flowing through his veins.

    He felt the sensations subside after a short moment. It had only taken a few moments to pull himself back together. He couldn't let his friends see him like this. Weak. Vulnerable. That wasn't the man they knew. He only needed to keep up the charade for a little-while, then he'd need to return to Caliphas. Dr. Thrice was perhaps the best man he could turn to with the revelation of these newest developments. His predictions on the neurological damage and hypothesis of 'Primal Regression' had been spot-on. If he couldn't keep the monster buried inside, he'd loose himself more-and-more to this beast.

    The blood had long-term and slowly developing psychological repercussions which more often than not led to acute cognitive dissonance, or in his case, mental fragmentation. The steady and progressive dissolve of his brain's ability to interpret thoughts, emotion and behavior would begin to falsely appear as schizophrenia. He would go mad. But... That was just the beginning. He clenched his jaw. He'd already made arrangements if the worst came to pass. He couldn't allow himself to fall into the wrong hands, nor allow himself to be the subject of some would-be doctor's malpractice.

    Thrice would see he would be kept in safe custody at the Haven-Guard Lunatic Asylum, where he could continue to work towards a cure. He'd searched for years, in every record he could lay his hands upon, yet... The number of persons reported to have survived or been cured after such an operation, had been zero. There were rumors of some Taldorian-bard with a similar affliction, and had overcame it. Yet, he could never seem to catch her. The bard was real. But that didn't mean the stories were. He'd gotten word from the Frallino that the tell-tale gypsy's wagon, The Dawnhammer, had come to Varisia. It was an opportunity, but he was too far and now he had other business to attend to. He could no longer justify chasing ghosts. His time was running out.

    He stood with renewed vigor, his footing steady. He looked back at his reflection. His eye had returned to its natural appearance. It was taking more-and-more effort just to see a day through. He sighed tapping the contents out of his pipe with a sharp-whack against the carriage's wheel before blowing it out and pocketing the device. It was time to go. He made his way around the carriage. Though it hadn't been much longer than a few moments to take a smoke, he felt like it had been forever ago. He nodded at Kendra and his old friend, taking his place at the bottom right corner of the coffin with a steadying breath. "...Let's get this done."




  11. - Top - End - #11
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    Watching Kendra's reaction to her request made her regret having come. "Of course Kendra would be a goddess damned racist. Hell most of this country is. Wish the Professor had taught her better, he never had a problem with me being a half-orc." Scoffing at the reply that she received she turned and walked over to the coffin. Looking back towards the rest of the group she watched the exchange between Kendra and Lucian. "Of course she's nice to him, F*ckin racist *ssholes. Wish they would all just die already."

    Taking a position at the top right of the coffin she turns and waits for the rest of them to get into position calling over Choar "Alright Choar just stay close to me till this is all over". Watching as Lucian walks over and begins to cry over the casket and then quickly heads off over to he carriage. Turning back to Kendra and looking none to pleased she decides that she might as well take another chance to look at the body. "Really wish you would let me inspect the body wouldn't take but a minute, and I'm just trying to see if what Nichol said about it being suicide is true or not. Wouldn't want some Bastard to get away with having killed the Professor.

  12. - Top - End - #12
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    Azarath nearly choked on an gasp at the mention that someone may have killed Petros and faked his suicide. Can it be true? I cannot deny I had hoped for something, ANYTHING, to be the truth beyond taking his own life. The love Petros showed for Kendra, the absolute devotion, it is hard for me to believe he would be willing to leave her alone in this world. The Tengu's eyes stared hard at the coffin, his mind racing at the possibilities. Even if it were so, the facts still remain that Petros is dead and Kendra is in mourning. There will be time afterwords to examine the facts; providing the man with a proper burial is more important right now.

    Removing his hand from Kendra, Azarath draws closer to the half-orc and speaks in a hushed tone. "I share your skepticism, or at least my heart begs it to be true. Now is not to time to visit such unpleasant truths, though I want to see them brought to light as much as you do. The thought of Petros taking his own life; I'd do just about anything to try to prove that wrong. Let us bury the man who touched us all and then we shall see what is the truth."

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    Lucian straightened his back as the half-orc returned to insist upon her own personal autopsy, or whatever this was supposed to be. He chuckled to himself, grinning wildly at the thought. He shook his head, he gestured with his hands about them - the the graveyard and headstones all around. The rotting flowers and trim of tended grass. "I appreciate the gesture, orc - but look around you. Look at the graves, the final resting place of a hundred-hundred men. The good-professor lies now within a coffin. The time for an investigative inquiry is long expired. If such inquiry were to be conducted and be expected to produce any results, it would have needed to have been held within at least 72-hours upon the recovery of the body. Lorrimor has been recovered and confirmed dead for 17 days and... 11 hours, give-or-take. If you've reason to believe this was murder- oh, and it was murder. Than no doubt you've some manner of understanding of Lorrimor's less savory clientèle and business rivals. You're 17 days too late. 17 days too far removed from the truth. Any major pieces, the pieces we need, have already been removed from the body. Though, I assure you there are other ways to find our culprits."

    He took out his handkerchief and wiped the beading moisture from his face from the thick mist in the air. His brow had begun running heavy with the dampness and humidity. "Let his body lay as it is. Lorrimor didn't have much in the way of a positive reputation within his own backyard. The superstitious, feeble-minded farmers of Canterwall's countryside did not respect him, they feared him. His life was one injustice after the other, a fate the man didn't deserve. Do not leave him bereft of even his dignity in death. Be it just, or folly, orc-hands upon his corpse will only besmirch what's left of his name to his own neighbors. This is our country, our history, and though I've no love for Canterwall, their culture is a part of The Immortal Principality. So you'll need find your justice via, other means."

    He stuffed the cloth back into his breast-pocket, with a certain devil-may-care flare. "Don't misunderstand however... This is where your and my interests align. I came for a friend. I came to fulfill a promise. But I did not come back to say my farewells. Oh, no. I came to get even." The menacing look which crossed his face was devoid of any mirth. The smirk had been replaced with an icy visage, rigid jaw and intense gaze that hinted at thoughts of brutality and bloodshed. He almost looked like a completely different person.

    He pulled off his cap, as it passed his face, the mask of the murderer was gone. Replaced with a sincere smile, as easily as an actor changing faces. He placed the hat against his chest and gave a slight cordial bow. "Allow me to introduce myself. I am Professor Lucian, Bishop Lucian. An instructor at Lepidstadt University. I primarily lecture the College of Arte Tenebris; The dark histories and esoteric lore of our country... amongst other things. I look forward to working with you both in the future. It will no doubt be.... educational." The grin returned with the last word and he placed his hat back upon his head. "Now, if you would be so kind. Let us pay our respects and re-double our efforts."




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    Imull stepped up to take his place at the coffin. Perhaps the driver was misinformed, Kendra probably has a better idea of what happened. Before Imull could ask, however, Lucian made his speech.
    "What makes you so sure it was murder? I don't believe the professor would commit suicide either, but there are a lot of other ways to die."

    "Oh, I'm Imull Ashkiddr, by the way. A student of the arcane arts."
    Last edited by plenty; 2016-11-13 at 01:07 PM.

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    A slight chill goes through her, one that has nothing to do with the weather. As the others discuss the manner in which the professor may have died - No, not died, was killed according to them - Lilla finds herself unsure of these strangers. Already in the span of only 10, 20 minutes maybe, one has managed to suggest disturbing the professor's rest through examination, and another has claimed that Professor Lorrimor's reputation was less than ideal, tarnishing the image of the good, supportive friend she had known. The one who suggested the latter possessed a strange visage as he spoke, and had a hard glint in his eyes that Lilla has seen before.

    She doesn't add to the discussion as they come to the conclusion that something unfortunate must have befallen the professor, though she quietly hopes that they are wrong. The prospect of suicide doesn't seem right to Lilla either, but there are a hundred ways that it could have gone, and she refuses to believe that someone would detest him so much to stoop as low as murder - for now. Perhaps it was an accident? An unfortunate breeze that swept past as he lingered too close to the edge of a roof? A misfiring of a weapon?

    Suddenly, she shakes herself slightly. Taking guesses at what kind of tragedy might have befallen the professor would not make the situation any clearer. However dubious the late professor's acquaintances might be, that man - the one called Bishop Lucian - was right about one thing. Right now, they had to lay the good professor to rest, and honor his memory. Everything else could wait.
    Last edited by Ceralune; 2016-11-13 at 01:14 PM.

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    As the Tengu approached her, she moved one of her hands to rest on one of her throwing axes. She halfway listened to him as he spoke. Leaning towards the man her face showing her annoyance at everyone's reaction to her wanting to inspect the corpse "You act like the Professor wouldn't have wanted us to find out what happened, Once the body is buried I won't have the chance to get answers to what happened. That is the only reason why I even brought up the subject, I am just trying to get answers here. I also don't know what dealings you had with the Professor, for me though it was all Business with him. He and I have multiple contracts that are still in effect, and all of them have a clause in it that is affected by one of our deaths. If it was a suicide like that man said then the contracts are null and void, but if he was murdered then there are actions that I must fulfill."

    Turning to look at Lucian as he began to speak. She listens intently to the man as he explains that any major information that could be obtained about who did it was most likely already lost. Hearing him say that he believes it to have been a murder put her at easy slightly and the fact that unlike the others here he seemed to understand that the Professor wasn't a saint. The man did have many points though, and he seemed determined that it wasn't a suicide. Watching as the man put his handkerchief away and his face turning to that of a killer, she was reminded again that not all of the Professors acquaintances were nice. That some just like her worked with the Professor on his lesser known projects. Course there wasn't that many options left to her since it seemed like she wasn't going to be allowed the luxury of checking the corpse. "I know that inspecting the body this late into it wouldn't provide information on who committed the act. But as i was just saying to the bird over here, I am only trying to verify that it was indeed a Murder and not Suicide as it will affect one of my current contracts and my actions from here on out. This has nothing to do with justice, this has everything to do with fulfilling my contract. That is not to say that i won't enjoy destroying those that did this to him if it was truly murder, but first and foremost i must fulfill my contract. Though it looks like i won't get do my inspection and you seem so adamant that he was indeed murdered. Would you be willing to forge a contract with me stating that you will provide me with the proof i need that he was murdered and from there provide assistance with destroying those that committed the act?

  17. - Top - End - #17
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    Tessa stared at Kendra as she switched attitudes rapidly, while talking to her guests, almost shaking her head as she noticed how much of her internal thoughts on the orcish fellow Kendra seemed to let through when talking to her. She, however, kept her body language stable to keep her judgement to herself, as she started to stare at the coffin. From right out of her cone of vision, she could hear the man, Lucian, talk to Kendra.

    She jerked, however, when the implication of murder was made. To her knowledge, the old man was an academic and not much more, who had few strong opinions and avoided confrontation whenever he could. When Lucian began to talk about his "clientele", Tessa seemed to feel a bit of her understanding of the world shake. She had spent a significant part of her long life under the tutelage of the old man, but it had never occurred to her that he might be more than what met the eye. She felt as though everything there was to know about him could be known from his care of her, and his mentoring of her.

    Now that she thought about it, she had spent no great time simply talking to him, despite his having basically been her father for all those long years. Discussion, sure, but had she ever asked what he did other than from what was obvious to any and all? Nay, and while he would likely not even have told her, she should have tried to find out.

    Lucian became, perhaps to all those who surrounded her and him, the most interesting subject. A professor from Lepstadt... She had been there recently, but had not seen him. No reason to doubt his words on his origin, as it is difficult to see people from dark parts of a library, engrossed in some random book.

    Still, she restrained herself, difficult as it was. This was a funeral, and everything would have to wait, simply to respect he who had Departed. She looked over to Imull and Lucian, and said "I certainly am curious as to the fate of my mentor and adopted father, but I don't believe we should engage on this yet. The dead rest, and so we should let them rest in silence. Let us deliver him to his bed in silence, if you'd will."

  18. - Top - End - #18
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    Unable to keep silent any longer as they still debate the idea of examining the cadaver while they make the trek, Lilla nods agreement with what the woman has said. She murmurs quietly, "That's enough. Whatever suspicions you may have regarding the death... I think it would do us all well to remember who is here." She looks to the woman who called the professor her adopted father. And then, she shoots a glance at Kendra, who she hopes hasn't overheard any of this. Lilla quite well understands the pain of losing a beloved father. "We can't assume what Professor Lorrimor would have wanted. Whatever happens to the remains of the late professor is not up to us. His daughters, his family is right here. And I think they have made themselves clear. Even if you are right... I do not think it would be in anyone's best interest to go against the wishes of the daughters of the man whom we all knew to some extent. So please, realize that this is not the best time for this discussion." With that, Lilla closes her eyes briefly, lost in memories of times gone by for just a moment.
    Last edited by Ceralune; 2016-11-13 at 07:59 PM. Reason: Completely Missed That He Had Two Daughters
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  19. - Top - End - #19
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    He listened carefully to the young man as he spoke, pausing briefly as he gave his name. "Curious... Ashkiddr? That does have the ring of quite an old name." The old man who waited patiently off to the side cleared his throat. "I do believe it may have some Kellish influence." He looked back at the boy with an approving nod, seemingly deflecting the subject "You don't happen to be a student at the University, do you? You surely do fit the part."

    As the orc once again opened her mouth, he had to cover his face with one of his hands as he shook his head. It was too be expected. Subtlety was not exactly the area of expertise for such creatures. "...Gods be good." He muttered under his breath. "...I understand, orc. But you seem to be blissfully ignorant of the larger picture here. The fact that any evidence has long been removed, and you are both 17 days late, and the body has been prepared for burial in accordance with our country's traditions... is irrelevant. I can scientifically explain the futility of the effort, but that is immaterial within these particular circumstances: No one wants to watch you inspect the body. That's the simple truth."

    He stroked his chin at the orc's last comment. "That's quite the interesting proposition, but this close to Gallowspire, it doesn't take a Scholar of Jandelay to have a fair idea of what transpired here. I would be willing to provide written approval of my cooperation, but it would be you assisting me with my investigation. Unfortunately, I cannot assist you so... directly, with the gathering of evidence. As the irony of the fates would have it, I am still under the employ of those individuals who would see the Professor and his work, buried in the ground." He glanced back at Imull, "...Which I believe, answers your question as well." He looked back at the half-orc. "It's quite the complicated situation, as you might imagine... Despite my best efforts, I couldn't protect my friend from his greatest enemy - himself." He crossed his arms over his chest with a growing sense of impatience. He'd told them enough, enough to at least lay some credibility on the matter and perhaps get on with this funeral. He'd been transparent with Kendra regarding his involvement with her father over the years, but in the end the distance between bravery and a fool's heart seemed to overlap. It wasn't until coming here that he finally understood. The Professor hadn't stopped. He pressed upon dangerous territory in the face of the beast. The Council needn't even lift their hand, they removed it. Withdrawing any semblance of protection they might have offered in his research and leaving him to fend for himself. It had been the same for Dr. Mortiz.

    Approach too close to the fire, and the fire would light you aflame. He cursed under his breath. How many friends would he loose? It was no wonder word hadn't come to him, Brays let the man do as he pleased and the problem solved itself. Check. But did he foresee him coming to Ravengro to pick up the pieces? He didn't know of his personal involvement with Kendra. That didn't change the fact, it was quite the gambit coming here. This was another dastardly play by Talisen, one that reminded him that inaction was still an action. Moves and counter-moves. This was their game of chess, and he just lost his knight. He listened to the others trade words, pushing aside his thoughts for now while looking back at the orc. "Regardless, this is a funeral. As our friends have observed. Aside from being highly-inconsiderate, this is a discussion best had elsewhere. For now at least, let us see this man laid to rest."




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    Imull chose not to respond to Lucian's speculation about his name, not that he wasn't proud of his heritage, but he felt that discussing a largely meaningless title he would never inherit to be needless bragging. He did feel the need to clear up any confusion he'd caused about his education though. "Yes, I am. I study languages at the university. I met the professor when he gave a guest lecture a while back. He introduced me to the man who taught me magic."

    Imull was a little shocked Lucian so readily admitted to working for people who wanted the professor dead, but he didn't believe anyone involved in a murder would be so blatant about it.

    As the conversation turned to the funeral and matters of respect, he felt he had contributed to the problem. "I apologise. I think I got a bit carried away. Perhaps we should retire to an inn after the funeral and continue this discussion in a more appropriate setting."

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    Azarath nods his assent to the point everyone has agreed to and walks to a corner of the casket. A single feathered hand rests for a moment on the casket's lid, before testing its grip on the casket's bar. Muscles strain as the Tengu tests the posture needed to raise the casket and the corded tendons relax as he emits a small sigh and relaxes.

    Azarath's head pivots in a singular motion, staring back at the others and waiting for them to take their honored spots as well.

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    “This is the first I’ve ever heard of a sister, adopted or not.” Kendra said slowly, choosing her words carefully as she looked around the crowd of adventurers. She stiffened as a bell chimed, causing her to turn to look down a trail. “We’ve stood around for long enough. If you will all please follow me down the Dreamwake.” She said drawing her hood over her head once more. She assumed her place in front of the procession and started down the trail. She walked slowly, ensuring that all the pallbearers had the coffin secured with both hands as a somber mood once again claimed the atmosphere. Upon reaching the corner of the trail Kendra stiffened and gripped her cloak tightly as the group was standing in the middle of the path. “What do you want Gibs…” She quietly hissed out.

    “That’s far enough." The elderly man Kendra addressed as Gibs, barked out. "We been talking, and we don’t want Lorrimor buried in the Restlands. You can take him upriver and bury him there if you want, but he ain’t goin’ in the ground here!” Kendra threw her hood off, as tears clung the sides of her eyes, arms shaking with rage evident on her face. “What are you talking about? ” Her voice cried out, a mixture of fear and restrained anger. ”I arranged it with Father Grimburrow. He’s waiting for us! The grave’s already been...” “You don’t get it, woman. We won’t have a necromancer buried in the same place as our kin. It’s bad enough he was friends with of them crows and one of the green-skinned monsters. Worst of all he had the nerve to go an’ bring one of those filthy deserters here.” He spat on the ground in front of him glaring at Azarath, Siniti, and Tessa. “I suggest you move out while you still can. Folks are pretty upset about this right now. Seeing these freaks won’t make it no better.”

    He crossed his arms as the crowd grumbled their agreements. “Necromancy!? Are you really that ignorant? I knew you were daft Gibs, but my Father would never delve into Necromancy! If he trusted these people then so will I!” At the insult half of the dozen men step forward, while the others spew insults at the party and encouragement at their allies.


    Spoiler: Status
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    While Carrying the Coffin both hands are full. All of the pallbearers must take a full-round action to lower the coffin.


    Last edited by Almighty Eevee; 2016-11-14 at 09:30 PM.

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    The large man nodded firmly. Sometimes silence was the better answer. They'd spent an abundance of time trading words carelessly, but ultimately it mattered little. This was not their country, not their war. Only the distant threads of a dead-man's memory loosely tied them to a battle 884 years in the making. They were still young. The decision of what they would make of their future still lay with them. But for him... The decision was never his to make, and time was running out.

    Together they lifted the coffin. It was light. Too light. He'd grown taller in the last year, and his broad shoulders were powerful and well toned, despite his lack of physical training. He hadn't trained his body in easily 20 years, and regardless of his youthful appearance it did not contribute to his unnatural physical ability. He was getting stronger, while his health wilted away. It was as if his own body was consuming his own life-essence, slowly lessening his own existence. He used both hands to hold the casket steady, but in truth he could have lifted the thing himself. Standing 6' 3'', he had to hunch slightly to afford all but the tall-slender elf the room to bare the coffin. He smirked at Kendra's passing comment about her would-be sister. "The professor did touch the hearts of many people. For better or worse..." He murmured the last bit to himself.

    A sour expression slowly crept upon his face as they rounded the bend and the gathering of peasant-farmers came into view. The silver-haired wolf of a man who followed behind didn't miss the sudden change in the sullen atmosphere. He picked up his pace coming to Lucian's side, his old voice was deep but low. "...I know what you're thinking, but you can't afford to be reckless anymore. You'll die." The wild-eyed professor snorted with a silent chuckle. "...Nonsense. Besides, I'm a perfectly patient man. Strictly the diplomatic sort." The old man placed a hand on his shoulder. "Maybe... once. But you haven't been yourself of late. You're changing, faster than you think." He waved a hand dismissively at the old man's concern.

    As the procession came to a halt and the faces in the crowd became clearly visible the mirth begun to drain from his features. He could recognize some of them. No, he knew some of them. Not in a personal capacity, but he took careful measure to remember names, faces, habits; the daily lives of those about him when possible. The farmers of the small town were uninteresting and generally found lacking in numerous ways. Though a handful, the troublesome ones, proved more entertaining. He didn't like Ravengro, but no one could deny its strategic placement. That alone gave it worth. The man at the fore of the mob was one such troublesome man. He listened intently to the trade of words. The image of Kendra's distress was burned into the back of his mind. "Doctor Faust, if you would be so kind..." He slid out from under the coffin and let the old man take his place underneath the burdensome weight.

    Concern was evident in his voice. "...Lucian, what are you doing?" The tall man took off his cap and placed it on the withered man's head absent-mindedly. "Teaching a lesson, of course." The aged man's brow furrowed in confusion as the professor flipped up his shirt's collar and begun untying his cravat. "...And what would be the subject, if you don't mind me asking." He pulled off the silk length of fabric from his neck and tossed it over the old man's shoulder. "History, perhaps with a side of Sociology for good measure." The old man signed, "This is the hardly the time for your antics, or will you let this predicament go unanswered?" The wily man unbuttoned the top fastening of his collar and unfastened the clips of his wrist cuffs. He looked back at the man with a grim humorless expression as he begun to roll back his sleeves. The old man's face stiffened. "That is precisely why, now is the time... for insightful thought."

    He swiftly turned away, walking forward to stand next to Kendra, placing a hand upon her shoulder in support. His voice was aloft, almost condescending, like speaking to a less than adequate student. "Ah, Mr. Hephenus. Why am I not surprised..." He paused briefly to let the words sink in. He'd never spoken to the man before, but when someone was as loud and boisterous as Gibs Hephenus in so quiet a town - it didn't go by unnoticed. "I'm perfectly aware that the implications of assembling this... militia, to illegally disrupt this lawful conjuncture sanctioned by the Church of Pharasma - Our country's Church - would be completely lost upon you. However, you do bring to light a number of curious topics, despite your invertible incarceration." He gestured at the elf. "'Deserters' - My, that has quite the ring to it, now doesn't it? But, do you even remember where the root of your racial-bigotry stems from?" He waved a hand interrupting any response from the man. "Yes, every citizen with some measure of higher education knows the elves didn't return to the fold of The Principality, a blow which our nation would not recover from. But that is not the true reason alone..."

    He set about to pace in-front of the man with his hands crossed behind his back as he begun his lecture. "During the 38th Century, the Whispering Tyrant was defeated. That's the story young farmers and commonfolk tell their children at least. No. Unfortunately, the truth is not that simple. The Shining Crusade which begun in AR 3754 could not even be won by the gods themselves. The holy Sword of Light, the goddess Iomedae, and her twice-blessed Knights of Ozem fought for 26 years with no sign of victory. Even redoubling their strength and summoning The Red Crusader, The Herald of Aroden, The Goddess Arazni was no where near close enough to stand against the Lich-God. Like countless others, she was defaced. Humiliated... And only then was she allowed to die, again." He paused for a moment placing a hand under his chin as if in thought. "Yes, I know what you're thinking - 'If he was so strong, how did he lose?' In truth, he didn't. Though he is celebrated in Lastwall and Taldor, General Arnisant did not best the lich. He died and got lucky. The fragments of Aroden's shield gave the fabled-cleric Narthoc the opportunity to seal the Lich-Lord within his own labyrinthine citadel. The body destroyed by the shield was insignificant, and even while smitten they could not contest him directly within his own domain. There was no victory. Only... time." He turned back towards Gibs, producing a fine comb from his pocket and running it through his deep azure hair before beginning to use it as some manner of teaching rod. The words came out so fast, it almost seemed like a ceaseless stream - a historical monologue.

    "Do you see now, Mr. Hephenus? Do you see where the lines bisect? It was not that they left our nation, they left our people to die. The war was not won, even with all our combined strength, it could not be won. They shut themselves away in Kyonin, isolating themselves from the needs of the rest of the world once-again. But Kyonin is but one place, one home for a race as diverse as man. The elves of The Mordant Spire have nothing to do with the elves of Kyonin, just as the Dusk Elves and Dark Elves call home, elsewhere." He pointed the comb at the disgruntled farmer. "How does all of this come together? What does it all mean? - Well, in short, the fight never ended. Lastwall and Ustalav had maintained a defensive posture regarding how they would handle the matter of Gallowspire after eight centuries of complacency. However, nearly 40 years ago, that all changed with the death of Sir Amshel Veraine, an honored Knight of Ozem. The servants of The Whispering Tyrant had returned. The county's of Vieland and Caliphas consolidated their influence and experts within The Palatine Council to unearth the nature of this threat and defeat it, once and for all. Within that arena of minds and wit, there was a man which stood above his peers... His name was Professor Petros Lorrimor." He grinned to himself. There was some pieces he had to omit, some he had to slightly alter simply to make it more believable than the truth. He couldn't truly say what befell Sir Veraine, not here, but the impact served the same ends. The accomplishments of Lorrimor couldn't be fully conveyed to these simpletons, but at least to some lesser degree, some measure of his influence might be grasped.

    He turned away from the man shaking the large comb in his hand as if to drive home a point. "The late-professor was many things, Mr. Hephenus. But a Necromancer was not one of them. His studies did bring him unto the depths of both the dark and profane. However, even at worst that would be only half true." He glanced at Kendra. "Lorrimor's knowledge of both the dark arts and their practice, be it Necromancy or worse served as the foundation for the fight against Tar-Baphon..." He spit out the forsaken name with a breath of spite, it was enough to make him cringe at its utterance and draw a gasp or recoil from any unsuspecting citizen close enough to catch wind of the forbidden name. "The secrets that Lorrimor unearthed armed men like me in the fight against the champions of decay and undeath. He fought for you, Mr. Hephenus. He died for you. Now the last true defense against the dark has fallen, and the curse of undeath will drown the streets of your home." He turned and paced before the crowd. "He was more than a friend, he was my brother, and a hero. I took him for granted, and took advantage of his kindness - like you. I couldn't see just how much the man had given me, given us - like you. He was a good man, a noble man. Braver than you'll ever know. He gave everything to save you..."

    He stepped into the small gathering of the dozen or so men, putting his heavy arm around Gibs's shoulder as if they were old chums. He spoke in a shrill hiss no louder than a whisper among the group just barely audible to those within his immediate vicinity. "Unfortunately for you Mr. Hephenus. I am not a good man. I am not a noble man. I'm the devil you deserve. These freaks are some of the closest relations of my most adored rival, and you just threatened the woman I love..... This is the part where I remove your limbs with a hammer... But, out of respect for the 'dearly-departed', I will give you this one chance to take your peasants and leave. Should you refuse, I am going to murder you Mr. Hephenus, but I'll have the common decency to drive this comb through the frontal-lobe of your brain before I disembowel you - Do you see that young-man there? I'm going to hang him from Horrowstone Memorial with your entrails, Mr. Hephenus. With your entrails..." He repeated himself once just to drive home the point as he pat the man on the back with a jovial grin on his face. From a distance it almost looked as if they could have been friends. "Either Lorrimor is going in the ground, or you are."



    Spoiler: Out of Combat Actions
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    [Standard Action] Total Defense (While Adjacent to Gibs)
    [Move Action] Focused Killer (Gibs Hephenus)
    Intimidate - Convince Gibs to take his friends and leave: (1d20+9)[15]
    Last edited by Mornings; 2016-11-15 at 09:55 PM.

  24. - Top - End - #24
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    Imull stood quietly and watched as Lucian spoke to the locals. He didn't know enough about the situation to feel comfortable stepping in, besides anything he said while standing toward the back of the group would only detract from the speech Lucian made. He watched the men, waiting to see how they would respond.

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    Gibs's eyes widened in terror as he felt his heart stop as he looked at the man who's arm was around his shoulder. "In all my years as a soldier, I've never met a man, no... a demon as much as yourself. You come to this town and talk about him and you tell me that dark arts are the reason we won." He felt something within his very being telling him to get away from this...thing, to flee as fast as he could and not look back. "We need not fear this town going to hell stranger... It already turned that way when you came in." He tore himself free and quickly started to walk away from the group into town. The group of men stared at the man in fear as their leader walked away. A few dared to still shooting venomous glances at the group as they followed Gibs and quickly fled the scene.

    Kendra fell to her knees, clutching her chest as her hand trembled in fear. "I-I'm terribly sorry for his behavior. I have no idea why he acted like this." She looked up as an old man trotted down the path. "Kendra I heard a commotion so I headed over. I saw Gibs and his gang running away. He looked at the pallbearers and then towards the man standing away from everyone else. "I take it you were the one that drove them off. Thank you for not harming them, Pride excluded. I'll be sure to let the sheriff know so punishment can be dealt accordingly." He walked over and helped Kendra up. "I-I'm fine, Father Grimburrow...Let us please just let my Father rest. I don't think that I can handle that many more shocks today..."


    Last edited by Almighty Eevee; 2016-11-18 at 12:33 AM.

  26. - Top - End - #26
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    Lilla stiffens as the man called Gibs expresses his displeasure at the burial. Professor Lorrimor... a necromancer? Her instincts immediately scream that this must be a mistake, and when Bishop Lucian goes forward to engage Gibs, she feels hope well up in her chest... only for it to die back down as he doesn't directly contradict his claims. While she has never heard of the professor doing anything dark, she finds herself tempted to wonder at Bishop Lucian's dialogue and the strange group that blocks their advance... a fact that interests her as much as it horrifies her. I shouldn't doubt him. He always seemed like such a kind, supportive friend... but a friend from afar. I never saw him in person again after that first meeting. There must be a lot that I don't know about him....

    Lucian's speech gives her cause for a lot of thought, actually. After the men leave, as the group recollects themselves, she thinks over what all of the exchange could mean. Necromancy... those people seemed especially averse to it. Far beyond the normal disdain, since they seemed determined to make us leave out of suspicion that the professor might have been one. There is the story of The Whispering Tyrant. People never thought about it much back at home, but they do say that people in Ustalav place a lot of stock in superstition. Perhaps that's why they were so alarmed? Her midnight blue eye gains an edge of steel. While it's true that some superstitions are larger than legend... that was still no excuse to act as they did. How insensitive they were, trying to deny a man a proper burial and his relatives some sense of peace! These rites are for the living just as much as they are for the dead. She wonders briefly what Lucian could have possibly murmured to cause such a terrified reaction, but while it will likely bother her when she retires later in the night, for now she's just happy that he made them leave.

    But again, she thinks about the friendship she shared with the late Professor Lorrimor. It seems unthinkable that he would dabble in the dark arts, and according to both Lucian and Gibs, he went further than that. While she doesn't know how true their words are, she takes heart in Lucian's final words. It surely puts a different perspective on their relationship, but it sounds much more like the friend she knew rather than the monster that the strangers were trying to portray him as. Is it true, Professor? Did you really sink so low for the sake of raising others up? She sighs lightly. Is that why you were so certain that I could channel my gifts for the good fight? That I could leave the shadow of my birth and become a force for good, for light? Even when I was completely convinced otherwise? Because the light that you brought others came out of the darkness as well? She looks up to the sky. While it is not yet night, she knows that the night will bring darkness, as it always does.

    I suppose nature has understood that exchange from the very beginning. It's just like the stars in the night sky. Out of darkness, can come light....

    Her thoughts are interrupted by the arrival of the elderly man whom Kendra refers to as Father Grimsburrow. Lilla recalls Kendra mentioning that this was the person she had arranged the burial with. Though it is a bit awkward with her hands occupied by the casket, she murmurs, "You are the one who helped Kendra arrange the burial? Thank you for coming to check on us." She looks around at everyone's faces, then continues, "I take it we should all continue onward to the site, lest we invite further disruptions by lingering here."
    Last edited by Ceralune; 2016-11-16 at 01:11 AM.
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    It was certainly a recurring motif of the day, self restraint, since it was beginning to seem that the provocations that Tessa faced were endless in the day. Absolutely any other day, she would rise to challenges and disarm every single one of them, but not today. Today was the day that her fiery inner thought remained only fiery inner thoughts, and had no repercussions from their exit into the real world. As per the Principality's inherent traditions, this day of death would remain sacred, especially since it was for someone she had felt was someone who had brought her to her current level in the day.

    With something that would only be described as a half glare and a half helpless glance, Tessa quietly said to Kendra "Know me you may not, and I may not be able to call myself your sister, but please, deny me not kinship on this day. Find me lacking on any other day but this."

    Taking up the mantle of pallbearer was hard to Tessa, as light as the body was, as the weight of regret that she suddenly felt. A man who had let her live a life of study instead of the orphan's usual drudgery was someone she knew virtually nothing about. She had chased knowledge for so long, yet that chase could have been halted for just a moment to appreciate the Professor at least once.

    But now he was gone, and as this incredulous man Lucian was making obvious, gone with a great many secrets that she would have wanted to know. Gone without her having returned the favor of life.

    Her deep introspective, however, was shaken back into an outlook back onto reality, as a group of men had suddenly blocked their path onto the Dreamwake. She locked her gaze into the eyes of the man that Kendra seemed to call Gibs, and as soon as he opened his mouth, she found herself seeing exactly the path this was going to go. Genre savvy enough, she was, to notice that academics in the reefs of Ustalav were not well respected, and a group of men blocking the passage into burial for such an academic could only imply certain things. Certain things such as the fact that they were probably not there to respectfully help him into the grave.

    Tessa however, said nothing, as the situation obviously built up into a kindled fire, ready to explode into something more. All she did was grit her teeth behind her closed dry lips, and kick some dust onto the spit that had made its way in front of her, to keep it from being a part of her attention.

    As soon as she found herself ready to open her mouth, however, she saw Lucian move forward with his long, almost monologue style of history lesson, and she found herself agreeing with the words he said. The man seemed to know what he was doing, and his ability to drive off the horde of superstitious townfolk, as she witnessed next, was also proof of this. But there was plenty of information that Lucian was letting into the atmosphere around him that was ground breaking and earth shattering at the present moment. Necromancy, for one such as Tessa herself, was not inherently evil, but rather, it was that it's use was inevitably for evil itself. The complicated and annotated spellbook that hid itself in her robes had several notes on the topic, though she herself had no spells from the discipline itself, and her study of it had never truly revealed any inherent evil to the weaving of negative energy.

    Sure, forcing souls to be bound to the earth when they truly belonged to Pharasma, a little more evil, but it was unlikely that the Professor engaged in activities such as that, even if he was truly practicing something as dangerous as true necromancy.

    "The girl is right, we ought to do as such. Bury the sword, tarry the night. I'm to suppose that there's much to talk about after, but I'm in favor of getting this done with before those folk come back with a cannon or some other symbol of their rage."

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    Carrying the coffin was not very hard, it was surprisingly light. She didn't know if it was because the professor was light or if all the people that were carrying it with her made it seem so. As they began to walk, her mind went to the first time she ever had to carry a coffin. It had been for her Father, she wasn't even in the country at the time that he died. A courier had shown up to her door much like one had shown up for the Professor, The letter that he carried was just as saddening. She had to have read the letter at least fifty times before it had really sunk in that her father had passed away. That day she boarded a boat and made her way from Almas to Absalom. She had been there doing work for one of the Noble houses and had to put a pause on it as she headed back to bury her father. Arriving back in Absalom she had been met at the docks by her mother who then took her to see the body. Looking down on it she could tell what had happened, With the line of work that she did it wasn't to hard. Her fathers throat had been slit and his tongue had been cut to shreds, it seemed to her that he had snitched on someone and whatever family or group they worked for had decided to end him. The following day they buried her father, the coffin that he was in was nothing special just a simple wooden coffin. It was heavy though unlike the one that she carried now, she wondered if it was because it had been her father the first time or if whatever wood this coffin was made out of was just lighter than her fathers.

    Coming back from her memories she watches as a crowd appears before them. At first she wondered if they were there to see the Professor off as well. But as soon as Gibs opened his mouth and begun to speak she knew that it was not the case. Hearing him talk about Professor practicing necromancy make her chuckle to her self alittle. If only these people knew the darker things that the Professor had been into, if they did they would most likely not even want him to be buried down the river. Nonetheless she was sure that this man was a moron, the way he spoke and acted made it easy to tell. She was used to be people not liking her, as a Half-orc she has had to live with that stigma for all life. It didn't make her any less angry though, Just because she was a Half-orc didn't mean she was lesser than that man. If anything she was better than him, she didn't judge people by there race, instead she judged them by their actions. Thankfully Lucian had stepped forward seeming to want to defend the professors honor. yet what he said wasn't quite so. Lucian had proceeded to give these morons a history lesson, explaining to them a great deal of things. Hearing the man mention The Palatine Council was interesting, she didn't have much knowledge on the subject but she knew that were comprised of some of the more powerful and influential people in the world. As the man went on with his speech she was surprised that he would put himself into the middle of them. The man didn't look like he would be much in a fight but she couldn't get it out of her head that he acted just like some of the trained killers that the Sczarni had in their families.

    Watching as Lucian put his arm around Gibs, she grins as she watches the mans face turn pale. Whatever Lucian had whispered to the man seemed to have worked as Gibs tore himself away and quickly scurried back to the sh*t hole that he had crawled from. As the rest of the people took their leave following after Gibs, she turned her attention to the man heading towards them now. He appeared to be a Cleric of some sort so she figured that he could be this Father Grimburrow that was supposed to be waiting for them at the grave. Hearing the man mention that he would inform the sheriff so that those idiots would receive a punishment made her scoff. "Doubt the punishment they will receive will be anything like what i would gladly give them for their ignorance. If it was my choice that man Gibs would lose his tongue for what he had said. Pretty sure that would stop all these idiots from continuing their harassment of the professor and his legacy." Looking around at the group as they all stood there, "Well now that That is over with lets continue on and get this man laid to rest. Wouldn't want to stand around and give those idiots time to get their confidence back."

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Mornings's Avatar

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    The light-hearted jovial expression didn't waiver on the professor's face as the man spoke in reply. He could feel his fear and unease wafting from the stink of his body and the sweat on his brow. The heightened pulse of the man's heart shuddered under his touch. It hammered on in his ears, filling his mind with dumbing dark whimsy. He was so close, he could just- His own words interrupted that dangerous trail of thoughts, "If this lesson has taught you nothing else my friend, it is of the necessary evils of the greater good." He pulled him back as he motioned to leave. "...And make no mistake. I am... A necessary evil." He released the man's shoulder to allow him to scuttle away. He wasn't surprised to see the congregation of peasants begin to dissolve and follow after the troublesome man. Cut off the head of the snake...

    His right hand sharply spasmed. Reflexively his hand clenched into a fist, he could feel those dark maddening thoughts creep upon his consciousness. At the edge of the darkness it lingered, prodding him, beckoning. It was like some beast standing upon some proverbial periphery of the mind that he could still control - it was a war, and he was loosing. The light - the neurological synapses of his brain's cognitive functions were failing, changing; Decay. He was fastly becoming someone, something - else. He turned his back to the rest of them to shield his pained expression. He clenched his jaw so tightly, he could taste the blood from his own teeth's gums. Visions of slaughter. The dance of the macabre. The beast, the devil, whatever monster was growing within - it strangled his senses, stifling him with violent compulsions. It wanted to murder those men. It wanted to devourer their flesh. To flay them of their skin while they yet lived for no better reason than to bathe in the choir of their agonized screams. What was this insanity? What was the name of ineffable darkness? He fought back the dizzying swell of bloodlust that beat him into a bloody-stupor, the endless cycle of spiritual regeneration. Cicatrix and lacerations.

    Without thought, his hand shot down to his belt beneath the gray woolen coat. He ripped one of the slender iron vials from its secure fastening upon the thick leather restraint. He removed the fixed steel-wire cap and plunger with his teeth and downed the contents as if taking a large shot from a barkeep's counter. He didn't want to taste it. Yet the seductively sweet after-taste of the sanguine concoction still tickled his taste-buds from the back of his throat. He had to stay in control. He had to stay in control... He chanted it in his mind like a sacred mantra. This wasn't him. It was something else. He could feel the sensation abate almost immediately as the vial's contents sated the explosive death-frenzy of the other half. He took a deep breath, re-gathering himself and storing the vial upside-down in its previous location to mark that it had been consumed. Nine left... His eyes scanned the remaining vials. He lasted longer than he thought; nearly 2 days without having to resort to emergency provisions. The influence could be fought back by will alone, at least to a degree. It was a reassuring discovery, but he couldn't allow himself to regress any further.

    The old man, Doctor Faust, eyed the professor carefully - his expression noticeably paling when Lucian quickly consumed some manner of potion. He nodded in agreement with the rest of the pallbearer's thoughts, his eyes never leaving the man. "...I would have to second that notion. Best move along before trouble comes to pay its respects as well." Lucian turned around slowly making his way back to the procession. "..They won't be back, cannon-or-no-cannon." He wiped the corners of his mouth with his handkerchief. Gerald cast him a suspicious glance, the Skaldic words rolled off his tongue with a deep Ustalavic accent like some distant reminder of the nation's ancestors; "was hast du gesagt?" (Skald: What did you say?) The professor grinned at the prompting of the old man, to those who were not familiar with the sound of old words the language sounded rough but accompanied with sing-song phrases. "Ich sagte ihm, ich würde ihn töten, dann hängte ich einen Jungen aus dem Gedächtnis mit seinem Darm" (Skald: I told him I'd kill him, then hang a boy from the memorial with his bowels) He laughed as the old man's face filled with a mix of shock and confusion, his mouth partially agape. "was ist los mit dir?" (Skald: What's wrong with you?) He shook his head. "Ich sagte, dass sie nicht zurück sein werden" (Skald: I told you they won't be back.)

    The short bout had come-and-gone, he'd tested the limits of his fortitude. Two days seemed to be the longest he could hold out against the influence of the his mental abnormalities. It wasn't looking good, he could already find visible evidence of the progressive downward spiral, eventually, if allowed to progress his condition would bloom into a state of full psychosis. If he wasn't careful, he might find himself within a darkness from which he might never wake - cognitive termination. Something raw and unchained would fill his place, without thought, without morality. He would need to prepare himself should the worst came to pass... He approached the priest and Kendra. "You've nothing to be sorry for, Kendra. That man has been a rabble-rouser before this day, just as he surely will after it." He produced a soft and charming smile at Grimburrow's words, "Yes, though I might have given Mr. Hephenus and his motley-lot a bit of a scare. It seemed like the only fair middle-ground between letting them run amok, and letting my foreign-friends here put his head on a pike. Words cut far deeper than knives, Father... As I'm sure Mr. Hephenus is now aware." He extended a hand to shake the Father's own. "Though under terrible circumstance, I'm glad we've had the chance to speak. My previous visits to Ravengro unfortunately failed to find me in your company. Thank you for all you've done for my friend and his family in their time of need. After the burial, if you have a moment, I'd like to speak with you regarding various matters..." He glanced at Kendra and the pallbearers, "...Of a sensitive nature."

    He slid the comb back into his pocket, having forgot he still had the mundane, yet murderous-grooming instrument still out. He held Kendra's hand supportively at her side. "We're almost there, but you need to understand..." His voice was low to keep the matter of the subject private. "I need you to be stronger than ever before. Men like Gibs were only the first. This doesn't end when Petros is laid to rest. Men of every stripe will show themselves, trying to steal, salvage, or lie. Wolves, dressed like men. This gets harder, because you're the daughter of Petros Lorrimor. That's a burden and blessing you'll begin discover when you walk past that gate back to the manor. I'll protect you. I'll always be here for you..." He tightened his grasp, the words weighed heavy in his heart. Could one man protect a girl from the world? He didn't know, but he never took back a promise, he never crossed his word, and he never looked back. There was only one way she could survive the darkness to come; the darkness that banked upon the dying horizon of a night that would never end. "...When your father goes into the ground, bury the old Kendra with him."



  30. - Top - End - #30
    Orc in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Eevee's Carrion Crown (IC)

    Imull gave a sigh of relief as Gibs and his friends left. That could have gone a lot worse. With any luck, we'll be done and out of town by the time they're ready to try again. They might try to stop a funeral, but I don't think they'd stoop to grave robbing.

    When the others expressed their desire to move on, Imull said "I agree, there's no point in waiting around, and they probably won't try anything after the funeral."

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