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Chaper II: All Cos[m]ic Revelations [Cope & Rabbit]

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Offline EvilCopepod

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"Can you not sacrifice something else?" she asked, there was no disgust or judgement in her voice at this revelation, though she very much so disagreed with him harming himself, she wasn't going to question his faith without knowing more about it, and hoped he could find another outlet for it. "Is it truly this wrong to believe in someone else's gods?" she asked, meaning how much damage he had done.

"If you must harm yourself for it, then do not believe in my gods and that I receive power from them. Believe that I get them from my ancestors, from the earth, and the emotions I have. These are much the same thing to me, and surely it is not wrong for you to believe in the earth, my blood, and my feelings, is it? You do not need to think of my gods."

After he took the gold, she took his arm and helped him off of the ground, though she was more of a guide than an actual force to shift him, "You are heavier than you look." she said to him with a small smile. "

Fosse listened quietly to his description, she understood him perfectly well, but she wasn't concerned about how much information on them the request had. Most people seemed very fast at getting information compared to her own pace, so she was unable to understand just how unnaturally fast their details had been taken and then used to recruit them. She was very interested in the large amount of gold, despite knowing that more gold often meant more trouble.

She had only glanced to Tarkis as he began to count before focusing on Niko as he spoke to her, even though she wasn't watching him count at all, she could hear that the clink of the gold was identical to the first time he had counted, so she accepted that it was the amount she was supposed to get. She slowly closed her fist around the gold before dropping it into her gunny sack. She didn't pull out her hand immediately, she instead pulled out a large square of folded fabric that was held together with a thin string.

"For Niko." She pushed it against the man's chest for him to take, "Put under armure." She had seen how his clothing had been destroyed not by battle, but by his own disease, and as she didn't wear any beneath her armor she knew of how it chafed, something which would likely rip off his easily removed skin. She had gotten some for herself, but while hers was thick wool, she had gotten some for him that was thinner so his skin could breath. Despite his large and odd stature, it would fit him perfectly, meaning that Fosse had been able to tell the tailor his exact proportions despite not ever having him measured.

Kinesia hadn't participated at all in the distribution of the gold or the explaining of the mysterious note to Fosse, she instead was studying the sheet more, especially her own picture, it was subtle but she swore they had drawn her eyes as vertical slits unlike all the others, but she couldn't be sure it wasn't just a mistake as they hurried to illustrate the image. When she heard that Fosse had something for Niko, she looked up curiously to see what she could possibly offer to him besides food and medicine.


Offline the_rabid_rabbit_bites

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“Heavy … and unmoving… should I choose,” Silax had looked thoughtful as Nphepho offered potential solutions for his problem – indeed, sacrifices were never explicitly described in his scriptures. But he had known that whatever he must sacrifice, it must hurt him gravely for his transgressions. What even, would match physical pain? He did not know, but Nphepho’s wisdom had planted a growing seed of creativity in his interpretation of the brutal doctrines.

They caught up with the others fairly quickly, despite Silax requiring some aid of Nphepho to stand and walk straight. Silax watched Fosse present Niko with some cloth, and the young boy, Tarkis’s curious and suspicious inspection of the material.

“Hmm,” Tarkis said, taking the fabric between his fingers and rubbing it, inquisitively eyeing its weave. It was a tight weave with a slight amount of stretch, good for providing protection to Niko’s damaged skin, without irritating it. He nodded. “Thankyou fosse, this is perfect for Niko! I – we – are very appreciative of your thoughtfulness.”

The boy’s eyes did sparkle with a genuine thankfulness. While Niko and him had a great deal of tension over the course of their brief interactions, it was clear Tarkis cared for him and wanted to ease his suffering, however long it would last. They were quick to equip it, Niko quietly allowing his armour to be removed and the material put in place. “Thankyou,” he said quietly. “I am very grateful.” He did not know how he could express his gratitude to Fosse, when facial expressions were not available to him.

“Should we continue?” Silax asked, once they seemed relaxed enough to return their attention to the task at hand again. He had noticed Kinesia’s continuous examining of the paper, eyeing their portraits. For the gargoyle, he had felt there had been minimal defining detail. The unusual cut of his hair, shaved on the sides and braided to keep stray wisps away from his horns, and the crowning horns themselves, was enough. He had yet to realise the expert capture of detail had unnerved the others. “I do not feel comfortable, sending all of us. What if it is a trap? Perhaps one or two of us should remain hidden. Myself and Kinesia are the least conspicuous, perhaps we should stay back, and watch in case things go poorly?”

The plan set, they made their way down the streets to the edge of Great Wyrly. The cobbled streets turned to dirt, and grass began to venture out underfoot by the time they came to the stone wall. Tarkis looked into the forest beyond, searching for movement. He saw nothing, and they walked straight through the gates before someone noticed, sitting with their back against the wall, their legs swinging in the ditch beyond, was a small, dark figure.

“Took your time, blimey!” The voice was clear and chirpy, a female voice definitely. “I’ll be as old as me grandmamma if I waited any longer. Welcome to our meeting place! I have no doubt your tow friends are waiting out of sight?”


Offline EvilCopepod

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Kinesia guffawed when she saw what Fosse had given the man, thinking that clothing him was the least romantic thing possible for her to do if that's what she was getting at. Fosse didn't pay her any mind, thinking she must be laughing at something else, and waited to see if Niko would accept or reject her gift, it also seemed that Tarkis could reject it for him as the boy looked it over quite seriously.

She was surprised the amount of gratitude from the boy, who seemed to dislike her, having expected a curt thanks if he did think it would suit Niko. Because of this, she wasn't sure how to respond, glancing to the ground then nodding with a small grunt to him while she tried to commit his kind words to memory. The time it took for her to recover from the gratitude allowed her to respond just in time to Niko's own words of thanks, which she responded to verbally as she knew he needed that.

"Good that Niko likes." she replied, "It is no trouble."

"You? Inconspicuous?" Kinesia had planned on continuing to ignore the gargoyle, but she couldn't ignore the absurdity of his comment. She was able to keep her eyes on him long enough to study him before looking away again, "Aye, you'd fit in besides a bunch of water spouts as long as you keep that paint off you." He looked, she thought, even more garish when he tried to hide his stony skin. "Mind that you stay far from me, 'lest you get us both caught." The pronunciation of her last word made it sound like she'd said cut.

She did agree to stay back, but kept her word on having them be at a distance, as she didn't want the other close even if there was a spot that suited them both to hide in. She had sent the large cat into the woods nearby as well, as she'd known it was on the outskirts, but it wasn't watching, rather it was looking through the woods for any potential backup that their summoner had. As for herself, she had found some shrubbery nearby that allowed her to hear the conversation, but keep out of sight, her clothing helping her blend in with the plant.

Fosse had trouble following the female's figure of speech, but she understood her last question well enough. "Yes." she said about the two of them hiding out, as she didn't actually think there was a need to hide this, especially since they had all been invited.

"I apologize for our late arrival, but we were unsure if this was safe or wise." Nphepho spoke frankly as well, "I do hope that is not the case. What is this task that you believe we are fit for?" She did not care for the prize itself, it was what they were meant to do that interested her, to see if it was truly worth her time or if some other adventurers would do.


Offline the_rabid_rabbit_bites

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Silax nodded, his teeth baring momentarily – had he been trying to smile? To leer? Of course she didn’t think he could be inconspicuous! How silly of him to assume her thoughts could follow what a creature such as himself would do to blend in. Well, now was the time to demonstrate! He even seemed to want to appear effective now that he had a friend in Nphepho, someone he wanted to make up to for terrifying her that last time.

He had scuttled off, pressing himself against the rough, cobblestone wall and blending in with the greys of the rocks. Their jagged edges and unusual planes broke his outline, turning him into little more than an irregular shape amongst the many irregular shapes as he stalked the group to the gates of Great Wyrly. For the others, no doubt his presence was at most an afterthought, but he didn’t doubt Kinesia, with her discomfort, would feel stuck between a rock, and a hard place.

The figure stood. It seemed whatever robe she was wearing was far too large for its short stature, pooling at her feet. Why she was even smaller than Tarkis! Who had only recently gained height and stretched, becoming lanky, but still smaller than one would expect from an adult.

“Cor look at you lot!” The figure was peering at Nphepho, or at least its hood was directed towards her; the person underneath had yet to reveal a face, and didn’t seem intent upon doing so. “So me boss tells me I’m gonna be waiting for a frightening lot – didn’t say how you’d be frightening mind – and I’m sitting her expecting some burley chaps to be preppin to knock my block off and here you are! A bab, a giant, and two women who look like ye crawled up from the depths of hell yer so ugly – “

Niko made a sound and grabbed for the voice, only to be cut off by Tarkis. The boy grabbed his arm and pulled him back wordlessly.

“Steady on. Fine, they’re unlikely specimens how does that sound, ya knicker-twisted brute,” the messenger stepped back gracefully, staying well out of Niko’s reach. “Well, here’s the thing. I don’t know who is payin’, but I seen the pay and it’s lookin miiighty fine. A pretty penny all right. Enough they be doing their own research and come up with you ghastly fuckers to do the job. They like yer skills, you managed to pull something real bad out of the otherworld and kill it. So yeh, methinks you’re more than capable of the job. Here …”

From within the vast robes, a hand extended a map, showing a monument – Tarkis did not recognise it, but to the others it was immediately visible as a cathedral, sitting in the middle of a much larger city to the West.

“So the underparts of this ruddy thing – the Cathedral of St Klemens - has been infested with beasts of yore for centuries, and people just … well, they let it be an’ it let them be, it seems. Or it were dormant, who knows,” they began, speaking so fast and in such a strange tone Tarkis and Niko had trouble keeping up. “But now, right. Different things be happening. City folk going missing. Animals. Just plucked right out of the air. Sometimes we aint never see them again. Sometimes we do and they … they aint right, you know?” The messenger sucked in a breath. “They aint right. They aint as smart as they be before. And they aint as kind to us, they real beastly, but don’t breathe. No heartbeat. They just shells that get up an keep going. And whatever the boss be thinking, it be something like whatever is that unholy? Well ye can likely clean it out.”

It was clear this person had not written the note, in fact the wholly pictorial nature of the map indicated they could not read or write at all. But they had the information to make a choice, and it was that which Tarkis and Niko considered, while Silax champed at the bit, already eager to destroy whatever had corrupted a holy place.


Offline EvilCopepod

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Neither Fosse or Nphepho had tried too hard to look for Silax, as he either had hidden well enough while being close or hadn't gotten close enough, it didn't bother them either way. But it was unnerving Kinesia, as she couldn't see the gargoyle at all, and even if she had the big cat with her its eyes wouldn't be able to pick him out among the shapes any better. She had to stop looking for him, instead she tried to focus on listening for him, as if she was expecting him to sneak up and attack her. She was used to listening for animals moving around her, and a creature made of stone may blend in better, but it certainly wouldn't be stealthier.

Nphepho thought that the stranger's lack of knowledge on their looks meant that someone else had hung the notice, and she wasn't insulted upon being called ugly, as she had received such an insult many times in this land, and she took it as them not liking how different she appeared in comparison to them. Fosse was unaffected by the insult as well, not only because she had been called it many times before, but because she simply didn't care what names she was called. However, when Niko got agitated, she did too, thinking that he had picked up on something that she hadn't, and if he had attacked she would have followed his lead.

The healer followed the words well enough, missing a few but she could hear the most important part, that undead were involved. It didn't matter to her what the rest of the risk or danger was, it was her duty to stop such evils. She knew that it was likely that she would need help for this, as it sounded like more than a simple necromancer to her, especially the mention of them being plucked from the air, something that she had only seen with the monster they had recently faced.

"I will end this evil." she stated, for even if the others wouldn't join her she wasn't going to turn her back on these people.

"Gold... is good." Was all Fosse had to contribute, she hadn't been able to keep up with the other's speed in talking along with the way they spoke, she only knew of the large sum being offered on account of the others having relayed the details of the poster to her. "Worth the gold?" Was the only question she thought to ask, as she knew of people that offered less than what the job was worth, and she wasn't able to tell if they would truly be paid well enough for what they were doing. From what she had heard and seen, the amount that they received from the church, even though it was more than promised, didn't seem like it was enough for what the rest of the group had done.


Offline the_rabid_rabbit_bites

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It seemed Tarkis had also been long since used to being called a baby. He didn’t respond, and instead eyed the bratty little consort – then his own travelling companions – with suspicion. “You would soon as march blind into this?!” His voice was incredulous as Nphepho offered to do the job almost immediately – it was not lost on the young boy that the brevity of her response indicated a different drive than gold to undertake such a task.

 “Ridiculous!” Tarkis snarled, squaring off with the messenger. She was so small neither looked intimidating. Indeed, if they had come to blows the impression would have been that of a childhood scuffle over a toy instead of what amounted to a large business deal. Tarkis was hostile to this agreement, and at first it seemed uncertain why until he spoke again. “She has told us nothing of our reward! What isd ‘a lot’ to a mangy street rat is probably nothing!”

It was the messenger’s turn to squeak indignantly and wave a finger in his face. “You watch yer mouth you little gobshite,” she snarled back, savagely. “If you want a number, there was at least five hundred gold pieces being counted out. When I was there, they hadn’t finished counting. Does it light up your eyes now you greedy little savage? Get out of my sight before I shank you!”

She swept off, and the companions were left watching her stalking retreat until she had disappeared amongst the buildings.

Tarkis was left swallowing a lump in his throat. Upwards of five hundred gold pieces! The words of the note rang in his mind. Gold, medicine, tutelage. Even if the other things had been some kind of over inflated promise, that was enough to keep him and Niko comfortable for a long while. Until Niko passed, definitely, with some left over for the young performer to build his own life out of those ashes again.

“It … it is enough, Fosse,” he said finally, as part of the wall shifted, and broke, and Silax padded towards them, his long, roiling movements becoming more fluid now the pain of his flagellation had dulled to an ache. The gargoyle thing took his place crouched beside Nphepho, head cocked and considering, carefully and measured.

“I don’t think Niko and I have an option,” Tarkis continued. “It is good. For us. We will never worry about feed, shelter, salve and bandages again.”

“It is much coin, very much. They don’t expect us to return for it,” Silax observed drily. But clearly, he had made his choice already – even if the nature of such creatures was not unholy, there were people he would follow into very dark places, and somehow the mysterious healer had become one of them. “But I will go anyway. This is a mission to cleanse the world of the unholy, and I will go. To this cathedral. And if I do not return, I have died doing what I was … made for.”


Offline EvilCopepod

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Fosse thought it was rude for Tarkis to say that Niko would be marching blindly into this, as the man had to march blind into everything and she didn't think bringing it up was necessary. So she didn't do anything to stop the possible fight between the two, although Nphepho was ready to step in if it truly came to blows. When she heard the number that the messenger gave, she was immediately set on doing the task; she had never taken a job that had offered five hundred gold, and it seemed foolish to her not to accept the highest paying job in her life no matter what it was. She would get any medicine she received to Niko, still not knowing what tutelage was, she decided that she would take it and sell it to someone that did want it.

"Fosse will go with Niko."

If they hadn't been shouting at one another, Kinesia wouldn't have caught the amount of gold they were being offered, and when she heard it she was immediately suspicious herself. She half-shouted a swear herself when Silax seemed to materialize from the wall, she had no idea he had gotten that close to the group despite having been looking right at them herself. She walked over to them after she'd regained her composure, but kept her distance from the stone being.

"You can reflect on your fate after it has come to pass, Silax. It does well to think of your victory, not failure, when facing the unknown." Nphepho said to his acceptance of death.

"It sounds like a trap." Kinesia said, "They know so much about us, put us on what looks like a damned wanted poster, and offer more'n the job's probably worth. Contrary to what she just said, she continued. "I'm comin' too."


Offline the_rabid_rabbit_bites

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“Of course you would go with him!” Tarkis growled at Fosse. There had been no question – and no-one had challenged her. No-one challenged Nphepho or Silax, either. It seemed that, regardless of how they had tried to split themselves, their paths would eventually reconverge. Even though Tarkis’s voice was hostile again to Fosse, he felt some comfort in knowing another person who could take hits would be there. It was a fate Niko could not bear another sustained beating.

“You, coming?” Silax eyed Kinesia suspiciously. He cocked his head to the side, staring at her, his eyes glassy. It was impossible to tell what lay behind them – it could be something as simple as an automaton with a puppeteer pulling strings from miles away, to a deeply complex and intelligent being – fully capable of thought, of emotional, and of dominating another creature in a battle of wills. There was no way of knowing. “All the poster tells us is someone was at the inn with us, as it is the only place we have been together, openly discussing the thing we brought back. We are wanted. For a job. And if that scares you, you are welcome to leave at any time. More gold for us … after all.”

Niko angled his head to Kinesia as she spoke - then it stayed there. It was hard to tell what he was doing, for he did not move it to acknowledge he was listening to Silax. “Whatever is out there,” he began slowly. His voice was thick and wet, moreso than before, and there was a wet sound as he 'faced' the others. “We will not fare well to face it suspicious of one another – or fighting. Tarkis, if you say anything so hostile to Fosse again I will happily see that you don’t have a tongue to say anything again.”

Tark snarled in response. He squared up with the giant in just the same way he had the consort – although now it looked much scarier for the little noble. “Well if you’ve got those words to say to me you great oaf, then you had better not let your feelings about her get in the way of the job. And tell Kinesia to stop acting like one of our number will turn on us at any moment. She’s the one that will make us kill each other long before me telling you to stay focused on our money!”

Niko made a jerky movement, as if he was suddenly seized by anger, only to control himself a fraction of a second later. He stood, his hands clasped behind his back in a strange, formal gesture. “As you wish. Unless any of us have objections, we set off tonight.” The echoing silence – silence that heralded the faltering around the edges of the group – told him there were no objections. He shouldered his claymore; Tarkis pulled his heavy blue cloak aside to count his bombs and flasks; and Silax twisted, stretching the last of his healed muscles.

-X-X-X-

The road was a long one. They had found the winding path to the city where the Cathedral of St Klemens lay, dormant, dark and shadowy as a tomb, through Silax and the church officials in Great Wyrly. The companions marched, single file, scaling the flanking mountains the hamlet sheltered in and skirting the cliffs on the other side, made of some glassy rock that jutted out into the air like knives.

The mountains opened out into lush meadows, stretching across the landscape. Silax and Tarkis found playful sides to themselves, running ahead, playing hide-and-seek in the long grass while the others stuck to the well beaten paths. There was a sense of adventure out in the wilderness. Freedom following the wild and brave, releasing them from the constrains of whatever brooding darkness had encapsulated Great Wyrly. The slow march was punctuated by nights camping and shared watches. The first night on the open plain, Silax had caught a handful of beautiful shining lightning bugs and, hands clasped so none of the light escaped, had showed Nphepho by releasing them in front of her. “Is this what makes us – the nature that makes you - powerful?” He had asked, knowing it was dangerous ground to tread. “The many thousands of ways the world makes us wonder? The anger in a raging forest fire? The warmth and comfort in a firefly… lighting the way for us?”

Niko had taken time to train, his strength returning over the days they travelled. He had challenged Fosse to may wrestling matches and training sessions, quietly accepting victories and laughing when he lost. It warmed Tarkis’s heart to see him happy, and he wished that the time travelling was longer than it would be – the road stretched long yes, but not endlessly.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2019, 07:27:07 AM by the_rabid_rabbit_bites »


Offline EvilCopepod

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Fosse hadn't said anything when Tarkis snapped at her nor when Niko told the boy off, she only stared blankly at the interaction, but she disliked it. She wasn't worth  causing a rift between the two, but she didn't know what she had done wrong to make them disagree so she couldn't fix it. She would try to figure it out on her own while they journeyed and make amends somehow. Kinesia didn't respond to either Silax or Tarkis either, so furious at their words that she didn't trust herself to do anything but swear at them.

-------------------------------------

During their journey, even Kinesia loosened up, glad to be back in the wilderness and away from the desperation that hung over the town like a cloud. She soon had a menagerie, as they came upon many creatures, and Kinesia even more as she strayed from the group and returned with a wolf or a ram, and soon she was covered in symbols burnt into her skin. Her mind felt free, no longer cramped in one creature that was forced to walk upon man's road but able to run through the grass and climb the many trees. She still mistrusted Silax, but it was far less obvious now, and she even forgave Tarkis for his own harsh words, instead appreciating their boldness, and found joy in having her creatures play with him, giving chase and being chased.

Nphepho had laughed as the fireflies were released, taking his open hands in hers, "Yes, Silax. The emotions are more powerful than what you can see, and it comes from those that are no longer at our side as well. There are so many that grow to lose interest in these wonders and then that power is lost. There is duality in nature, the anger of forest fires allows for new life, the brightness of these flies that warm us brings the flies that pierce human flesh to drink blood. It is how one looks at things that determines the magic."

Fosse couldn't recall having a more pleasant journey, Niko was the first person to ever spar with her, and she learned quickly not to hit too hard when he explained that it wasn't a true fight. She had always enjoyed fighting, but didn't realize that it could be done without someone being hurt or at the least losing bitterly. While she didn't laugh or smile, her movements were less sluggish, she woke from sleep much earlier and faster, spoke more with Niko than she had previously, and even attempted to hold up conversations with the others in their group.

Given the description of the messenger, it was fair to expect that the town would look as poor as the last one they were in, and the villagers filled with as much distrust, but that wasn't the case. It looked like a standard town, there was a market out already busy, the windows on the buildings were not shuttered, some even wide open as well as doors. There were children playing in the streets without supervision, their shouting mixing with the crowds of people, who did give the travelers suspicious looks, but only because of their strangeness. The cathedral in the distance almost appeared to have its own atmosphere, it stood tall and dark among the bright town, the gargoyles that hung off of it were only identifiable by their limbs as all their faces had been smashed off. The great bell upon the church was fallen and left as it was, beginning to rust.

Despite everyone's mood, there were remnants of disaster, people were bandaged with fresh blood seeping through the white cloth, there were many visible repairs to buildings where wood different than the rest of the home was used or in one case it was still smashed in with something dark coating the splintered wood, the children jumped over the marks of a struggle on the dusty ground which was quickly being hidden by shuffling feet.

Fosse didn't notice anything wrong besides the unusually strong smell of old blood and the look of the church,  Nphepho was looking at the different injured people, trying to spot any signs of infection, biological or mystical, and Kinesia stroked the one creature she had brought visibly into the town, a raven upon her shoulder, as she noted that she could name no creature that made the gash marks in the building with what appeared to be more than six claws upon one hand.

"We need to learn what we can from these people." Kinesia said, not wanting to go in blindly, but these people looked blind themselves.


Offline the_rabid_rabbit_bites

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The plains seemed to disappear all too soon for Tarkis, replaced by fenced off pastures that marked the outskirts of the City of Saints. Maybe once it had been proud, but now as the motley group approached, the dark smudge on the horizon seemed to grow, take shape, and close in around them. It felt more alive than Great Wyrly, surely, however it still felt uncomfortable. The group entered, walking two by two thorugh the market streets – Tarkis and Kinesia at the front, Niko and Fosse in the middle and Silax and Nphepho at the back, as if to obscure the two. They approached the city centre, where the Cathedral of St Klemens stood, opening onto the city square.

Silax had dressed himself up again, and next to Tarkis they looked like two performers backed by a supporting troupe. The distrust for them was one of general distrust for outsiders, and not yet the deep, malicious fear of the monstrously unknown that so many of their party were used to. However, a pit had opened in Silax’s stomach when he had seen the damage done to the stone gargoyles – rendered ineffective with head and limb ground to rubble. He had no doubt that the villagers had sufficient reason to do so – for the frantic marks of chisel and hammer were visible on some, and it implied to him the original purpose of such gargoyles – to protect and defend – was not how the villagers viewed them anymore.

“I do not like this, Nphepho,” he said quietly, as if confiding. He edged closer to her, feeling discomfort catpaw its way up his spine. “I am fearful to speak to these people.”

Tarkis held the gaze of some other children who sat in the shadows of alleyways – they seemed to be around his age, or a few years younger. They looked hungry and downtrodden, however Tarkis knew they would be the eyes and ears of the town, and should little information trickle in through the usual channels, he could no doubt talk his way into some information from the street rats he had so decried when facing off with the consort. “I dislike the idea of going to the noticeboards for information, as we had done previously,” he whispered to Kinesia. “Our reputation may well precede us … I say we listen for the crier first. For he will have news first, before we go looking …”

Indeed, the crier had some information – although little that shed light on the nature of what had descended upon (or risen from beneath) the town. There was news of trade, of royal decrees, of important deaths and marriages, of regular robberies on the roads into and out of town. Niko found himself believing they had a shred of luck, to not have been attacked on their way here, for ir would have depleted his strength. However before he could voice this, the crier had moved onto pertinent news.

“Effective immediately! By order of Lord Mayor Innisse Greyson, a curfew from sundown to sunup has been placed upon the city until further notice,” the crier’s voice was becoming slightly strained, however he need not have yelled or rang his bell, for it seemed this was news many in the bustling square had stopped to listen for. ”The scourge of the mindless has grown more numerous in recent weeks! The night has seen two score dead! One – Abigail Freya Henness … “ he went on to list the morbid tally “… twenty three, Jason Whitehill. All remaining unidentified! The Scourge was last seen after sundown in the Benson Quarter! Be safe, my friends and family… “

Tarkis took a breath. “It is a start. We should find a place to base ourselves, and ask the people around Benson Quarter… wherever that is…” Niko nodded pensively, but Silax looked to the others for further guidance. 
« Last Edit: August 07, 2019, 07:46:44 AM by the_rabid_rabbit_bites »


Offline EvilCopepod

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Nphepho might have not noticed the damage to the gargoyles if it weren't for how fresh the marks were, the broken parts stood out against the rest of the weathered and aged stone of the cathedral. Nphepho wasn't certain who could have done that, it was no easy task for a malicious being to pass the threshold guarded by such idols, but it would have to be exceptionally powerful if it were actually to destroy them or possibly compel the villagers themselves to destroy the statues.

"Then you need not speak to them." she replied, placing a hand upon his shoulder, being careful not to smudge his makeup. She didn't think him cowardly, as he had shown bravery in front of the great monster they had faced, and she knew that it took a different kind of courage to converse with the untrusting, yet innocent, masses.

"Board won't tell us what we need to know." she agreed with Tarkis. The information they were looking for was likely to cause panic, and since these people were far from panicking, she doubted the public notice board would have any details on the horrors they were supposed to face. The news from the crier was worse than she expected, and she eyed the villagers with new suspicion. Though none of them looked happy, none were running home to pack their things and leave immediately.

Unlike Kinesia, Nphepho understood why the people didn't simply just leave, she was certain that only the rich would be able to afford to abandon their homes, but it was also likely that the rich would be able to fortify themselves more against the undead. Her own frown deepened at the confirmation of there being undead, and her grip on Silax's shoulder tightened before she let go.

"What is... scourge of the mindless?" Fosse asked Niko, not having ever heard of such a thing. Mindless creatures were certainly easier to fight than clever ones, and she hoped that their enemy would be most of those creatures. She did know that so many dead in one night was terrible unnatural, especially in what seemed to be a peaceful town.

"I agree that we should find a place in which we all stay and meet." Nphepho said to Tarkis, "But I will be no help in gathering information." She was met with too much distrust, and besides, all she thought she needed to know was that they were indeed fighting the undead and their master, and she had learned that much. "I must gather supplies to prepare for the battle, if you do not mind, I will meet you before night falls." She then looked to Silax, "If you would join me, I would appreciate it." In truth, she didn't need him, but it wasn't a lie that she would appreciate having him come along with her, and it gave him a reason to keep from speaking with the humans here.

"Don't be late." Kinesia said, glad to not only be rid of Silax, but of Nphepho as well, who seemed too honest and strange looking to be adept at getting information from the villagers.