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The Five Kings of Winter [IC Thread]

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Everhall
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The Five Kings of Winter [IC Thread]

Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:56 am

The Five Kings of Winter

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No one saw the winter coming. No one did. Not even the most experienced elven mages of all of Durrendel could have seen the coming of the ice. None could have foreseen the disaster that began the Everlasting Winter. The City of Durrendel was first to feel the fury of the gods, they destroyed the city rising the great White Mountain in it's stead... but they didn't stop there... they spread the winter across the Kingdom, expanding to the entire continent. Durrendel itself was no-more. The principle cities of Eastmarch, Westgrove, Northwall, and Southfall went on to form their own Kingdoms. But the winter, lasted.... and the world entered a new Ice Age.

In has been 250 Years since that fateful event that shook Durrendel. And now, a new threat comes from the North, the final force in the god's punishment... soon, they will unleash their full fury....

The Eternal Winter

For many years before the Eternal Winter came, the Kingdom of Durrendel was prosperous. The 5 Kings lived together in harmony, the King of Durrendel being chosen as the leader of well, Durrendel. However this harmony came at a cost, the Kingdom ravaged their neighboring countries, sowing no mercy in their quest for domination. For their militarism, the gods punished Durrendel, and the rest of the continent with the Enternal Winter. Durrendel itself being destroyed by the formation of the White Mountain. The cities fell into disarray, their entire world had suddenly taken a drastic turn for the worse. But in this chaos, their was opportunity, the Dwarves of Eastmarch rebelled against their Human overlords, taking the city, and the Elkfolk of Northwall attempted to overthrow their own King, only to be destroyed.

In the past few years, things have been a-moving. Northwall invaded Southfall, in a bid to conquer the Kingdom, and the King of Eastmarch faces now internal revolution from their previous Human masters. Only Westgrove has remained prosperous. However through all the strife, they have adapted to the Winter.....

But the Kingdom, is not prepared for what is to come next....




General Alexander Black-Hammer;
Fort Kinreth, Near Southfall


He honestly didn't know how they did it, nobles, held up in their fancy castles coming out to lead armies? Ha! He was even denying it as it happened right before his eyes. Apparently the King in Northwall thought he needed to send his cousin or something to help out on the Southern Front, like it needed anyhelp. As Alexander stared at the marching troops a small tap was felt on his shoulder,

"Who?" Alexander asked turning around, "Oh, it's just you, Lord Frost. What are you doing here, I've an army to lead."

"Well as you know, I am here to lead the Southern Armies in the Occupation of Southfall," the noble replied, "But I am also here, to relieve you."

"Wh-"

"You are to report to Northwall to speak personally with the King. He had a very special task for you."

"Oh.... then, I'll have to get ready for the tr-"

"Your carriage is already ready to leave when you are." the Noble interrupted

Alexander nodded and walked into his quarters picking up what items he was allowed to bring on the journey to Southfall and walked out to the carriage looking quickly at the Fort before boarding and beginning the trip to Northwall.

Alyari Ashen;
Westgrove, The King's Palace


Alyari walked to the grand Palace gates of Westgrove, which seemed to be one of the many center pieces of the city, including the Mage's College and the Palace itself, a marvel of Elfish craftsmanship. Although Alyari didn't start to marvel in the city, as he had seen it many times before, and the glory of elfven craftsmen was already known to him. He was there to seek council with the King, the great King Fiiral of house Undilar. Ha! At least that's what they like to say. The Ashens was where the real power of Westgrove laid, they supply most is not all the Kingdom's food supply and they were not to be trifled with.

Alyari walked up to the Main Hall of the Palace looking at the guards and nodding as he went in where the King sat upon his throne,

"King Fiiral Undilar." Alyari began bowing, "It is I Alyari Ashen coming to you for court."
Last edited by Everhall on Wed Aug 19, 2015 8:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:05 am

Northwall Keep
Fifth day of Snow Moon, 250 AW

A cold mist from the north smothered the city. The northern capital didn’t get much else but snow except in the mildest winters, but a only light dusting covered the rooftops and cobbled streets that morning. The mists were so thick that only the nearest buildings below the keep were visible; beyond them stood tall shadows and faint light. It felt like some strange underworld, some timeless place between the worlds, where the damned wandered mournfully for a time before finding their way down to whatever hell their sins had earned them. Cambrius stood on the balcony that led from her rooms, wrapped in a cloak of blue-grey timberfox fur, gazing down on the city.

Rhiannon emerged from the heavily curtained archway and stood a few feet away, gripping the stone railing and staring hard at the inscrutable mist.

“Something vexes you, love,” Cambrius said.

“No,” Rhiannon replied.

“It was not a question.”

The queen turned and moved closer, lowering her voice. “If you must know, I was thinking about trust.”

“A valuable commodity,” Cambrius replied, “that can be both bought and misplaced.”

“It was misplaced in Brego Frost, certainly,” she said. “Now all of Durrendel may go to war and thousands will die as a result. Tens of thousands.”

“It is most precious – and strongest – when it occurs naturally. Like between family,” Cambrius said.

“Tell that to Portia,” Rhiannon muttered.

Cambrius turned from the city below and narrowed his eyes at his wife.

“Fair point,” he conceded. “Trust can be hard to come by, even among the closest of kin.” The king let the unspoken reference to Rhiannon's brother hang between them before moving on. “Brego is a gifted agent. One in whom we placed great trust. He took the opportunity presented to us by the Iron Council and perverted it for his own gain. That is why the royal House of Southfall has to be expunged and that is why the smallfolk of Durrendel will endure the destructive thrashings of the nobility. It is also why you left one of House Frost’s most talented operatives gutted like a common thief, in a back alley in Southfall, I presume.”

A servant in the royal blue livery of House Frost approached from the archway. “Your Majesty, my Queen,” he interrupted, “there’s been a raven from Fort Kinreth.”

“Very good,” Cambrius nodded. “I will receive the message in the study.” The servant bowed deeply and left.

“At least that’s the end of the matter, then,” Rhiannon said, returning to the conversation.

“Perhaps,” the king replied. “You believe the secrecy of the operation to be in jeopardy?”

“I’m still working to confirm that.”

“We must do better than that, love,” Cambrius insisted.

Rhiannon frowned. “I interrogated that arrogant doxy myself before littering the alley with her filthy carcass.”

“No leaks?” Cambrius raised an eyebrow. “No sponsors? No collaborators?”

“No, sweetling,” Rhiannon maintained. “The trail is dead. There is nothing to lead back to us. I told you, I handled the matter myself.”

Cambrius turned back to the vista before him. The mists parted, like the curtain opening at a mummer show to reveal some new tableau. The great oak tree in the sacred grove of the castle appeared, its bony limbs spread wide. Fallen leaves lay about the wide grey trunk in drifts of grey and brown. The ravens were thickest there, muttering to one another in the murderer’s secret tongue.

“Let us hope so,” he said.
Last edited by Cymrea on Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Asterdan
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Postby Asterdan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:19 am

Everhall wrote:Alyari Ashen;
Westgrove, The King's Palace


Alyari walked to the grand Palace gates of Westgrove, which seemed to be one of the many center pieces of the city, including the Mage's College and the Palace itself, a marvel of Elfish craftsmanship. Although Alyari didn't start to marvel in the city, as he had seen it many times before, and the glory of elfven craftsmen was already known to him. He was there to seek council with the King, the great King Fiiral of house Undilar. Ha! At least that's what they like to say. The Ashens was where the real power of Westgrove laid, they supply most is not all the Kingdom's food supply and they were not to be trifled with.

Alyari walked up to the Main Hall of the Palace looking at the guards and nodding as he went in where the King sat upon his throne,

"King Fiiral Undilar." Alyari began bowing, "It is I Alyari Ashen coming to you for court."


"Ah, yes, the Captain of the the Guard in Grovegarden," Fiiral said, looking upon the elf from his throne, "I've heard great tales from among the ranks about you. It is a pleasure to finally meet you in person. Now then, you have went to great lengths to seek an audience with me. What is it that is on your mind?"

The Elven King rested his chin in his hand, leaning on one of the arms of his throne. He was quite interested in seeing how he could help such a distinguished soldier. Tales had come to him of this elf's exploits as the Captain of the Guard, one of the most distinguished in the entire kingdom. He was apparently a good leader and a strong warrior, but he had also heard that this Captain thought very highly of himself, possibly too highly. This was going to be an interesting meeting for sure.

Taking in his appearance, he saw that his body was adorned with Elven armor, the best of all the armor in world. There was an air of nobility around him, as well as an aura of arrogance.
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Everhall
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Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:32 am

Asterdan wrote:
Everhall wrote:Alyari Ashen;
Westgrove, The King's Palace


Alyari walked to the grand Palace gates of Westgrove, which seemed to be one of the many center pieces of the city, including the Mage's College and the Palace itself, a marvel of Elfish craftsmanship. Although Alyari didn't start to marvel in the city, as he had seen it many times before, and the glory of elfven craftsmen was already known to him. He was there to seek council with the King, the great King Fiiral of house Undilar. Ha! At least that's what they like to say. The Ashens was where the real power of Westgrove laid, they supply most is not all the Kingdom's food supply and they were not to be trifled with.

Alyari walked up to the Main Hall of the Palace looking at the guards and nodding as he went in where the King sat upon his throne,

"King Fiiral Undilar." Alyari began bowing, "It is I Alyari Ashen coming to you for court."


"Ah, yes, the Captain of the the Guard in Grovegarden," Fiiral said, looking upon the elf from his throne, "I've heard great tales from among the ranks about you. It is a pleasure to finally meet you in person. Now then, you have went to great lengths to seek an audience with me. What is it that is on your mind?"

The Elven King rested his chin in his hand, leaning on one of the arms of his throne. He was quite interested in seeing how he could help such a distinguished soldier. Tales had come to him of this elf's exploits as the Captain of the Guard, one of the most distinguished in the entire kingdom. He was apparently a good leader and a strong warrior, but he had also heard that this Captain thought very highly of himself, possibly too highly. This was going to be an interesting meeting for sure.

Taking in his appearance, he saw that his body was adorned with Elven armor, the best of all the armor in world. There was an air of nobility around him, as well as an aura of arrogance.


Alyari Ashen;
Westgrove, The Royal Palace


"I have come to you my King, to discuss the state of the world," Alyari began, "most of the Kingdoms of Durrendel starve while we are still prosperous. During this accursed winter, our farms never froze, and our people remained happy. We are so fortunate in so many ways... why not share this prosperity with the rest of the world?"

Most of what he said was just a ruse, a viel to keep his real intentions hidden, Alyari knew the King wouldn't instigate a war for gain, but to go out to help the starving people? Oh it was just to good to think about.

General Alexander Black-Hammer;
The North Wall, The Kingdom of the North


Alexander stared up as his carraige passes under the great North Wall, a enormous fortress of Stone and Rock guarding the people of the Northern Kingdom. He looked out into the distance to see the lights of Northwall in the distance, he was already so close to home...

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Asterdan
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Postby Asterdan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:44 am

Everhall wrote:
Asterdan wrote:
"Ah, yes, the Captain of the the Guard in Grovegarden," Fiiral said, looking upon the elf from his throne, "I've heard great tales from among the ranks about you. It is a pleasure to finally meet you in person. Now then, you have went to great lengths to seek an audience with me. What is it that is on your mind?"

The Elven King rested his chin in his hand, leaning on one of the arms of his throne. He was quite interested in seeing how he could help such a distinguished soldier. Tales had come to him of this elf's exploits as the Captain of the Guard, one of the most distinguished in the entire kingdom. He was apparently a good leader and a strong warrior, but he had also heard that this Captain thought very highly of himself, possibly too highly. This was going to be an interesting meeting for sure.

Taking in his appearance, he saw that his body was adorned with Elven armor, the best of all the armor in world. There was an air of nobility around him, as well as an aura of arrogance.


Alyari Ashen;
Westgrove, The Royal Palace


"I have come to you my King, to discuss the state of the world," Alyari began, "most of the Kingdoms of Durrendel starve while we are still prosperous. During this accursed winter, our farms never froze, and our people remained happy. We are so fortunate in so many ways... why not share this prosperity with the rest of the world?"

Most of what he said was just a ruse, a viel to keep his real intentions hidden, Alyari knew the King wouldn't instigate a war for gain, but to go out to help the starving people? Oh it was just to good to think about.

General Alexander Black-Hammer;
The North Wall, The Kingdom of the North


Alexander stared up as his carraige passes under the great North Wall, a enormous fortress of Stone and Rock guarding the people of the Northern Kingdom. He looked out into the distance to see the lights of Northwall in the distance, he was already so close to home...


"Most of the world still distrusts us," Fiiral said, sighing sadly at the thought, "They would likely not accept aid, but it is a good thought. One that is within the realm of possibility, however difficult it may be. This will be brought to my advisers and we shall discuss it, as I am sure some solution could be thought up with enough minds. I would love to repair relations between the three remaining kingdoms, but that is something far easier said then done. Sharing our prosperity would be a step in the right direction.

Should this come about, however, we would have to make sure that our people still had plenty. While I want to help all, the Kingdom of Westgrove comes first."
Last edited by Asterdan on Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Kaidou
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Postby Kaidou » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:52 am

4 months prior to the present storyline

"Yesss, that's a good boy. Sit down on the chair.

By this time, the boy had no more energy to resist; he had not eaten or drunk a single thing for 3 days. Apparently, his father, a sorcerer widely renowned (and condemned) for his unorthodox methods, claimed that it was for experimental purposes.

"Now, Brand, you'll do exactly as I tell you", the sorcerer crooned, as he chained the boy's hands together in front, the tight bolts cutting into the boy's wrists. "I am now going to make you drink this. It'll taste bad, but… DON'T SPIT IT! HOW DARE YOU! SWALLOW IT! SWALLOW IT! SWALLOW IT, YOU… there. That's a good boy. Remember, Father always knows what's best for you."

Immediately, Brand was able to sit up, his energy restored. He began to kick and flail about, screaming at the sorcerer. Nothing was on his mind except for the torment he had experienced at the hands of this man whom he called "Father".

"Now, my boy, I want you to put this sock over both your hands…"

"Father, you just took it out of the freaking oven! It's…"

"SHUT THE HELL UP AND DO AS I SAY, YOU BITCH!"



"AAAAAAAAAAHHHH!!!!!"

"Good. Now, I'm going to slowly pour the oil over the sock, and…"

"No, Father, you won't!"

"SHUT UP!"

The sorcerer spat into Brand's face as he took the pot of fuel, dumping it all over Brand.

"Now, this lighted match is going to touch you ever so gently…"

The moment the match touched Brand's body, the sorcerer was throw backwards, smashing into the bookcase and slumping on the floor. From what he could feel, his cervical spine had been shattered, rendering him paralysed. Such was the power of the blast. He, however, began to laugh, as Brand screamed in pain, the tongues of orange fire licking his body.

"Good! Good! Feel it! You grow from the pain! Love it! Love it, I command you! Love it, and love me, with all your heart and soul!"

It was then that the chair in which Brand was restrained on exploded in a burst of white light, blinding the sorcerer temporarily. When he regained his eyesight, he saw Brand standing in front of him, holding a large meat knife.

"No, Brand! Brand! Put down the knife and listen to me! I have cared for you all these years, and now you want to turn on me like this? Please! I beg you! Spare me!"

Brand would not listen. He raised the meat knife, before thrusting it right through his father's heart. As the sorcerer screamed in agony, Brand's knife burst into a luminous blue flame that engulfed his father from the inside. Igniting his other hand, he brought down a fiery fist onto the sorcerer's abdomen, using his immense fury to propel the fist forward and ram it home. The impact sent a cracking noise reverberating throughout the room. At last, Brand was able to vent the anger that had boiled within him for over a decade.

"GO TO HELL YOU FUCKING DEMON!!!"

Ten agonising seconds later, the sorcerer slumped down onto the floor, his eyes rolled back into his head. Brand was on his own.

Now, it was time to burn down the place and leave. To Westgrove, where he could end his own ruined life in a grandiose fashion, as one final word of scorn to his insane father…


---

Present storyline

The clearing in the forest was illuminated by a warm, gentle sunlight. Despite the winter having engulfed Durrendel for centuries, there were a few days where the sun would create at least some warmth. On one edge of the clearing was a cliff, from which the Royal Palace of Westgrove could be seen from afar.

Golden Lion Barius had barely awoken from his 6 hours of slumber, the longest he had slept in one sitting. Inside his tent lay Brand, the boy whom he had met along the road the other day. As the boy slept soundly (albeit with a disquieting scowl written on his face), Barius could not help but think back to that fateful day when he, during his evening hike, had met the boy along the road. Barely eleven, and yet heavily scarred on the torso and rather malnourished, the boy was a pitiful sight. What struck Barius the most, however, was what the boy said to him when inquired of his motives for wandering the forest.

"You can kindly go and piss off. I'm just looking for a nice place to blow myself up and die."

What evil forces could drive a boy of 11 to harbour suicidal wishes, Barius did not know. He could still remember how, that particular evening, the shock of hearing such a young boy say something so ghastly drove him to tears. He had offered to take him in, to which the boy finally relented after an hour of vulgarity laced refusal.

Now, a week after that fateful encounter, the two were now high up in the mountains. The boy had reluctantly agreed to join Barius on his search for purpose in life. What Barius had promised was that they would find an elf mage who could heal Brand of his scars, physical and emotional.

Now, as the boy lay fast asleep, drooling slightly and softly repeating the word "blastoma" over and over again in his sleep, Barius stood up, adjusting to his peg leg (which was attached above the knee, for that was where his leg was severed), looking over the ledge, down at the Royal Palace.

He would find a way to get in there, and enlist the help of anybody inside.

Anything was worth it.

Brand, I've only known you for a week, and yet… I've come to love you as I would love a son. It tears my heart to think that an 11 year old boy should feel a need to kill himself, and as long as I'm able to, I will ensure that you will never have to…
We are currently 25% through Donald Trump's presidency.
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Everhall
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Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:01 am

Alyari Ashen
Westgrove, Royal Palace


(OOC: You mean three remaining Kingdoms. The 5th hasn't been revealed yet)

"Thank You for your consideratiom my King." Alyari bowed before turning to walk out, "Before I go I must warn you, if Northwall's Imperial Expansion continues in it's way currently, the city of the Dwarves and then the elfs may fall... just think on that." Alyari added as he walked out

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Kaidou
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Postby Kaidou » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:22 am

As Barius sat on a log near the cliff, his peg leg resting on a large rock nearby, he heard rustling behind him. Out of the tent stepped Goraneus D. Brand, with a rather oversized fur jacket that Barius had taken from the pub's lost and found closet draped over his small shoulders. His breath was clearly visible in the rays of the sun's light as he plonked himself next to the much taller and much more muscular 56 year old.

"What a place", he said sardonically to Barius, not turning his head to face the man, but instead, gazing out into the open horizon and the Royal Palace, which looked around the size of a tangerine from where they sat.

Barius smiled, dotingly wrapping his arm around Brand's shoulder. The boy's body was ever so slightly warmer than his; Barius had never considered the reason for this. Perhaps Brand was just sick?

Reaching into his own coat pocket and pulling out a cracker, Barius passed it to Brand, who simply fiddled with it with his tan, vein riddled hands.

"I'm not hungry", he insisted bluntly, continuing to gaze blankly into the horizon.

Barius stood up from the log, yanking his peg leg off of the rock. "We're gonna leave in an hour's time. That palace down there… it might have answers." While Brand continued to stare out into the open, still unconsciously fiddling the cracker, Barius hobbled back to the tent, using his Durrendel Alloy javelin as a walking stick. He began to pack up the supplies into a large sack, putting out the last dying embers of the night's campfire. As he rolled up the groundsheets and stuffed them into the sack, the Golden Lion began to reminisce to himself, the contents of said reminiscing too foggy for him to even remember. Perhaps the cold air was getting to his brain and freezing his cranial fluids? Or perhaps it was the depth of his experiences dizzying him? Or perhaps… never mind. It was time to go.

"Brand?"

The boy sluggishly stood up, his coat draped over his shoulders like a cape. The two layers of tunics that he wore concealed the deep, pink scars that covered his torso; scars that testified to a dark, tormented past. Sticking a furry hat onto his own head, the 11 year old boy shambled forward, following his one legged companion down the mountain, towards that tiny, seemingly tangerine sized palace at the bottom of the cliff.
We are currently 25% through Donald Trump's presidency.
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Postby Greystone Forest » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:28 am

Amergin drew in a deep breath and could smell the sea though they were yet miles away. It was chilly, but not like the north. The deep forests of the south were almost always in a temperate climate. He looked around the settlement with an exacting eye. He was pleased that the scouts had found some ancient mounds, mounds that had not been plundered by the forest wraiths.

"My lord Amergin, what thinkest thou? Thou hast been brooding all through this trip." Amergin looked up to see the Lady Tlactha walking towards him.

"Greetings, my lady. A bit chilly for that thin garb of yours, eh?" She knew it wasn't the material of her robe that interested him, but her barely-seen body beneath it.

Without speaking, she drew a flask from her belt and popped the cork. "Perhaps a draught wouldst change thy mood?"

Amergin took hold of the flask, knowing that the home-brew of the Druid Queen would undoubtedly change his mood, powerful stuff as it was. He took the smallest sip and instantly felt new life and vigor flowing into him. With a sparkle in his eye, he said, "A bit stronger than usual, even for you, my Lady."

Tlactha smiled, something that completely unnerved Amergin. "Big plans, m'lord, require big drink, no?"

A scout came running into the glen. "My Lord Amergin, a band of roughs have been spotted a mile from here. Could be Pér Loisel and his clan."

"Call the guards to me. I'll go out myself and see what this bastard wants." Myrddin Amergin, High Druid of the Warriors of the Forest, stood to his full height and checked his weapons. Long sword, battle-knife, and shield were at the ready. Twelve of his warriors ran up and he said to the scout, "Lead us to the place you saw the roughs." Turning to his men, he said, "Keep your eyes open. If it is indeed Loisel, we can expect treachery."

They moved as one, single file through the deep brush into the quiet of the forest.....

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ApplePieistan
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Postby ApplePieistan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:33 am

Southfall, Kingdom of the South

Alissa was loitering in her rickety farmhouse, looking at the calendar and eating an apple. She says to herself "Let's see, rent's due next week, this is my last apple, and I'd like a new pair of shoes. Everyone in Southfall is broke, so I better set my sights on another land." She looks at a map of the 4 kingdoms and thinks "Westgrove! Now that's a treasure chest right there. They're greedy over there anyway, especially the King. I outta "redistribute" his wealth."

Alissa heads off to the castle in Westgrove in her leather armor. She keeps her bow and sword holstered while she holds an empty Santa-sized sack over her shoulder. Out of all her missions, this posed a much higher risk than anything she had done before. She considered this in depth during her hike to the Kingdom of the West.

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Everhall
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Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:24 am

Alyari Ashen
Grovegarden


The trip back home was short back to Grovegarden, was easy, usually taking 40 minutes or 10 by horse, the Sun had barely moved in the sky. As he rode into the settlement he momentarly noticed Brand and Barius comming over one of hills near the settlement before walking into Ashen Manor.

The man slipped out of his armor, brushing off his regular clothes before walking into his father's office,

"Captain of the Guard Alyari Ashen reporting." Alyari said saluting his father,

"Where in Arryn have you been?" the elf sternly asked

"I reproposed my plea to the King,"

"Arryn forbid he should listen to you Alyari, just go guard the settlement,"

Alyari scowled as he walked out, putting his armor on before walking out the manor slamming the door behind him

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Everhall
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Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 10:28 am

Alexander Black-Hammer;
Present Time; Northwall Keep


Northwall. The great ancient city of the human race. Like most days within the city, the snow fell hard, elkfolk laborers working hardly to clear it, their overseer watching closely for any disent. Unlike most people from Northwall, Alex didn't harbor any hatred for the Elkfolk or even feel any racism for them, he only judged people on their merit and power, nothing else.

Alexander walked to the Gates of the Keep, which was held high on a hill,

"General Alexander Black-Hammer here to see his liege." the general said to the guards

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Videssos
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Postby Videssos » Tue Aug 18, 2015 11:44 am

King Cyhyraeth Lerácyntain,
Southfall


Clouds from the east loomed towards the coastal city of Southfall. The deep ocean's nearby waters were stirring as ships came into the port, and with the winds that were coming in, a storm was evidently brewing. The city itself bore the vestiges of what it once was. They were, however, merely vestiges, languishing behind the open wounds and the tell-tale signs of past conflict, and of suffering. In the past couple of years, the situation had begun to improve, if only a little.

Poverty was still rampant, especially amongst those who weren't either nobles or wealthy merchants. Unsurprisingly, crime wasn't uncommon. Various bands of thieves, murderers and similar types were still prevalent. Recent crackdowns were beginning to lower their numbers, however, especially with the reorganisation of the guards, and a year ago, a purging of the more corrupt elements.

From the palace's balcony, Cyhyraeth watched, garbed in an ornate white and gold linen coat, with gold and silver stitched into the fabric, breeches, soft leather boots, and black gloves, a breeze causing his long pale hair to flow behind him. Sheathed at his side, was an ornate sabre forged of Durrendel steel, in an immaculate black scabbard. He also had an unusual curved dagger, with a gold scabbard worked in strange runes. The hilt was wrapped in fine gold, and was capped with a large ruby, with quillons resembling golden-scaled serpents baring their fangs. This finery was something not many in the kingdom could be said to possess.

It would still take a considerable amount of effort to turn aside both the current situation Southfall was in, and the ambitions of Northwall. The king's gaze narrowed on a contingent of Northwall men, part of those already stationed in the city since the invasion's completion, though the city itself wasn't officially part of the northern kingdom, even if much of its dejure land was. Beginning a blatant rebellion was not an option.

Cyhyraeth had been attempting to reorganise and strengthen what was left of Southfall, but he knew he had to find alternative measures to ensure his goals were reached. It was only a matter of time before the northerners annexed his lands. They would probably kill him, too. All the sooner if they realised the threat he was. He was also in contact with various rebel groups laying low in the conquered territories. With the greatest secrecy, of course.

Mages, assassins, and soldiers would be gathered in the time to come. Indeed, in the past few months, there had been an influx of "workers and artisans" coming into Southfall's city. Though many of them were in truth, more martial in their inclinations. The populace also desired someone in whom they could place their trust, to bring them peace and prosperity, as well as freedom from the oppression of corrupt fools and imperialistic foreigners. Though he never openly said anything against Northwall, Cyhyraeth had become such a figure to many. Someone that they could rally behind.

With the threat of assassination, Cyhyraeth had begun strengthening the Royal Guard, as well as creating an effective espionage system, whilst himself delving into more dubious forms of magic. Though only a master of ice magic, he had recently begun experimenting with shadow sorcery and other less reputable arts. Refocusing his thoughts, the androgynous young king turned, and moved back into the palace proper. One way or another, he would see his ambitions, his dreams, realised...
Last edited by Videssos on Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Yuzhou
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Postby Yuzhou » Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:21 pm

Ignatius Veraben
Royal Palace
Southfall

An enlarged eye gazed curiously through an half-filled beaker.
"Flax oil" Ignatius said aloud to himself before moving onto other beakers. His stock of non-magical oils was well off, but anything of the magical variety was rather lacking. He expected this, and harbored no anger over it. He gave a sigh as he peered over the collective ingredients on the desk. In truth he was still getting used to the feeling of having any ingredients. This was the first time in his forty-eight years that he had anything close to proper equipment for magical practice, and he feared it would go to waste. After all, while he knew a good bit of the art of alchemy, he had never practiced it.

Still, he was grateful for the opportunity anyways. It's not everyday you get boosted from wondering scholar to court mage after returning to the land of your birth. Disparate times call for unorthodox measures, and how disparate things had become. The old wizard took a moment to examine his circular working quarters. The stone walls were expertly carved, ornate statues sat on pedestals high above ground level. What little evidence proved the past of Southfall, there was much to prove it the present. Many sections of the palace had fallen into disrepair, and even this very room seemed stripped of the majesty it once held. Still, Ignatius was all the same very pleased with what little grandeur he was granted. Luxury was always an alien yet highly sought after concept to him, having had little of anything for most of his life. To him, it felt that it was something earned by both his family name and his own talent. Something that he knew should come in due time.

And now it had. Still, as he examined all the contents of his quarters a desire to restore what once was washed over him. Perhaps that was what he should feel seeing his position. Yes.. he thought, I think that will be my goal here.
And so it was: Ignatius Veraben will seek to aid his king in restoring Southfall. Not just back, but above and beyond if possible. After all, would it not be appropriate for a man of his perceived magical ability to help achieve great things? If house Veraben could go from exiled to position in one generation, surely the kingdom with a bit of luck could do the same.

He stroked his short beard in contemplation. There would be many challenges in way of progress. Northwall had just about annexed the countryside, leaving the kingdom a puppet state with one city. That very same city was thrown into ruin for the most part. The commonfolk suffered greatly with little food and hardly any chance of gain. The merchants did decent enough, but the lower classed ones hovered dangerously close to the condition of their fellows. Even with a harsher grip, crime still held it's horrid seat on the fabric of the great city.
No matter, Ignatius turned and started tinkering with some tools on a nearby bench. He was confident in his ability to achieve any goals he put his mind to. If not through diligence, than through fire. He only need make sure his new king had the same drive.
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Everhall
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Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 3:36 pm

Alyari Ashen
Grovegarden, Kingdom of the West


"Arryn damn him...." Alyari cursed as he walked onto the many fields of Grovegarden, unlike most farms, after the winter came, the ones of the Elfs remained prosporous, they still expand almost endlessly, their crops out in the sun. The only way this worked was through complex Elven Magic, even the most knowledgable Sapimer couldn't attempt it,

Alyari walked to the head farmer or mage of Grovegarden, which was his younger brother,

"Viciro, I need to speak with you," Alyari motioned his brother as they both walked into a nearby storage shed,

"What is it Alyari?" he asked

"I am destressed brother, our father, he's too uncooperative with my world view," Alyari explained, "I need to know you'll on my side."

"Wait, are you agitating about Elven dominance?"

"YES! How could our King, refuse to see the opportunity we have?! Northwall is still marginally weakened by the Southfall Invasion, and they are wasting manpower in the Kingdom! And what's to say they won't target Westgrove next? Are you with me brother?"

"....Yes Alyari... I am..." Viciro sighed as he walked out the shack
Last edited by Everhall on Tue Aug 18, 2015 4:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Asterdan
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Postby Asterdan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 5:52 pm

Fiiral paced as he was alone with his thoughts, thinking over what the Captain had said. To be truthful, it wasn't the first time he had thought about sending aid to the other kingdoms. Each time, however, the thought of not having enough for his people kept him from taking action. Fiiral sighed, knowing that it would take many months for those at the College to do the math, and determine exactly what percentage that they could spare. He hated that this was necessary, but he couldn't let his people starve in order to help the other kingdoms.

"A King's duty is to his own people first," Fiiral said as he paced, "The Gods second, and the world third. This is how it always has been and this is how it always will be."

Glancing up towards the sky, Fiiral went to his knees. He began praying to the Gods for guidance, unsure of what to do.

"I beg thee, oh divines," Fiiral prayed, "Show me what to do. You know my heart lies with my people. I wish to share our bounty with the other kingdoms, but I must make sure my people have enough for their survival before I do any such thing. Guide my mind and body, send your wisdom down to me."

He worshiped three different pantheons, and was currently praying to the most prominent pantheon when the Five Kingdoms stood tall.
Last edited by Asterdan on Tue Aug 18, 2015 5:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
You can call me Aster. Yes, I did revive this nation... Again...

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Deramen
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Postby Deramen » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:03 pm

Northwall, Kingdom of the North
Bastille


Bastille was walking The Marts. He looked at a apple. It was a sickly green, Harvested to early he thought. He heard a giggle, Female from the tone. He listened close but acted nonchalant near them.
"Hmm what are they saying?"
"Did you hear? The guys a Elkfolk! He's probably retarded or something." The girl next by laughed.
Probably, Normal people don't have those only weird people do.
Bastille started shaking and grinding his teeth. He started breathing heavy and slowly turning around.
Oh my god I bet his mother hated him for his race and stuff.
He pulled a dagger out and stabbed the closest person. He hit a woman with the dagger, It got the chest most likely killing her.
HEY! get em! he stabbed her! Bastille smirked and started running. Three or four guards started running toward him with there swords. He pushed a cart over hoping to stop them, It worked for one of them. He turned a corner to lose them, It didnt work. He ran but tripped over a rock.
"CRAP!" He fell down onto hay.
Ha! arrest the fool and send him to the king.
I still cant believe he killed the kings relative! This might be a execution for the poor kid. Bastille sighed and let it happen. He would ditch them once him a cart.
Gold is thoughts. Wanted to get involved with the king.
Last edited by Deramen on Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:04 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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ApplePieistan
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Postby ApplePieistan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:18 pm

After taking her sweet time, Alissa had finally arrived at the western castle. By the time she arrived, it was already dark, thus allowing her to enter undetected. Before she actually entered or did any theft, she took a moment to admire the castle's exterior. The way the castle seemed so neat and taken care of made her smile, something she hasn't done in a while. Seeing what beautiful things the richest people in the world can make gave her a feeling of awe and admiration. After a moment, she began the escapade. Obviously no one could get in through the front gate, but there had to be a side entrance or a window or something. Upon closer inspection, she saw a side window. It wasn't too hard to find since it's the only thing on that side she could actually see because of the candles inside. She went far enough so that the guards were out of sight, moved to the left some, then walked back to the castle, now being on the side the side window was on.

She found herself in the king's bedroom, where the king was absent. Instead, he was out praying, leaving this room ripe for theft. There wasn't too much made of gold besides the candleholder, but she didn't take that because the lights going out would surely attract someone. Instead, she went through the king's drawers, taking all his valuable and expensive clothes. Alissa placed them in her bag along with a painting. If it breaks in her sack, she could always scrap the picture frame. She leaves the room by stooping and walking into a nearby cellar. Here, she steals many bottles of valuable wine. Her bag was now almost full, so she went to make her leave. Exiting as cautiously as she entered and by using the same route, she leaped out the bedroom window and hurried away, moving southeast.

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Asterdan
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Postby Asterdan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:49 pm

ApplePieistan wrote:After taking her sweet time, Alissa had finally arrived at the western castle. By the time she arrived, it was already dark, thus allowing her to enter undetected. Before she actually entered or did any theft, she took a moment to admire the castle's exterior. The way the castle seemed so neat and taken care of made her smile, something she hasn't done in a while. Seeing what beautiful things the richest people in the world can make gave her a feeling of awe and admiration. After a moment, she began the escapade. Obviously no one could get in through the front gate, but there had to be a side entrance or a window or something. Upon closer inspection, she saw a side window. It wasn't too hard to find since it's the only thing on that side she could actually see because of the candles inside. She went far enough so that the guards were out of sight, moved to the left some, then walked back to the castle, now being on the side the side window was on.

She found herself in the king's bedroom, where the king was absent. Instead, he was out praying, leaving this room ripe for theft. There wasn't too much made of gold besides the candleholder, but she didn't take that because the lights going out would surely attract someone. Instead, she went through the king's drawers, taking all his valuable and expensive clothes. Alissa placed them in her bag along with a painting. If it breaks in her sack, she could always scrap the picture frame. She leaves the room by stooping and walking into a nearby cellar. Here, she steals many bottles of valuable wine. Her bag was now almost full, so she went to make her leave. Exiting as cautiously as she entered and by using the same route, she leaped out the bedroom window and hurried away, moving southeast.


After a few moments, Fiiral entered his bedroom. He immediately noticed the empty wardrobe and drawers, and couldn't stifle the sigh as he realized his clothes were missing. Fiiral almost chuckled, who would steal clothes? Whoever had stolen them must have needed them desperately. Walking to a window, he leaned out of it.

"I suppose you need them more than I!" he called, "Consider this one debt-free!"

Nearby, Rilamus Andalara, the Captain of the King's Special Guard, was sitting in a tree, watching the castle. He had seen the girl enter and leave the palace, tracking her movements as she left towards the southeast. Hearing the King say that this was debt-free, he decided to go and see why the girl had stolen the clothes. Moving through the branches of the trees, jumping from tree to tree, Ril quickly made his way in the direction she had went.

Using the skills he had developed during his time as an assassin, he tracked her, followed her and soon caught up too her. He decided to make a bit of noise in one tree before silently moving to another a few feet away. After toying with the girl, he dropped in front of her, standing to his full height. His hands gripped his daggers as he looked the frail girl over.

"May I ask why you stole the clothes of King Fiiral Undilar?" he asked.
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Postby ApplePieistan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:00 pm

"Shit!" Alissa thought to herself. "I'm busted."
Alissa dropped the sack in front of Ril and stepped back. She said to him "I don't mean any harm sir. It's all there; you can count the bottles and the garments." Alissa put her hand near, not on, her sword handle. She hopes that he actually starts counting the wine bottles and garments so that she could either flee or slash him with her sword.
Last edited by ApplePieistan on Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Asterdan
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Postby Asterdan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:07 pm

ApplePieistan wrote:"Shit!" Alissa thought to herself. "I'm busted."
Alissa dropped the sack in front of Ril and stepped back. She said to him "I don't mean any harm sir. It's all there; you can count the bottles and the garments." Alissa put her hand near, not on, her sword handle. She hopes that he actually starts counting the wine bottles and garments so that she could either flee or slash him with her sword.


"Keep them," Ril replied, "After the King discovered the stolen clothes, he assumed you needed them. You are debt-free. I'm just curious as to why you need to steal. If you are that bad off, simply asking King Fiiral would get you the same results. Although, I know from experience it is less fun."

Rilamus chuckled a bit as he reminisced on his days as a member of the Thieves Guild, his smile fading as his thoughts turned to his time as an assassin, then a soft smile returning as his mind came to his current position. Looking at the girl, he could feel a kindred spirit.

"I was once a member of the Thieves Guild," he explained, "so I know the thrill of the theft, as well as what drives someone into that life. A native of Southfall, I had little choice."
You can call me Aster. Yes, I did revive this nation... Again...

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ApplePieistan
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Postby ApplePieistan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:26 pm

Asterdan wrote:
ApplePieistan wrote:"Shit!" Alissa thought to herself. "I'm busted."
Alissa dropped the sack in front of Ril and stepped back. She said to him "I don't mean any harm sir. It's all there; you can count the bottles and the garments." Alissa put her hand near, not on, her sword handle. She hopes that he actually starts counting the wine bottles and garments so that she could either flee or slash him with her sword.


"Keep them," Ril replied, "After the King discovered the stolen clothes, he assumed you needed them. You are debt-free. I'm just curious as to why you need to steal. If you are that bad off, simply asking King Fiiral would get you the same results. Although, I know from experience it is less fun."

Rilamus chuckled a bit as he reminisced on his days as a member of the Thieves Guild, his smile fading as his thoughts turned to his time as an assassin, then a soft smile returning as his mind came to his current position. Looking at the girl, he could feel a kindred spirit.

"I was once a member of the Thieves Guild," he explained, "so I know the thrill of the theft, as well as what drives someone into that life. A native of Southfall, I had little choice."

"You think I steal for fun?" Alissa said with slight aggression. "Do you know how I feel when I break and enter in a rich man's manor? Scared. I fear for my life whenever I take a step on another man's land. I know that king is greedy and doesn't care the slightest bit about foreigners. I hear his prayers; he said that people like me are his last priority. The art of theft is all I have to pay the rent and eat every day."
Last edited by ApplePieistan on Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Kaidou
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Postby Kaidou » Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:31 pm

The Palace certainly didn't look very welcoming.

The walls, after all, were heavily fortified. Guards stood all around, barring access to vagabonds like Barius and Brand. It was immediately apparent from that encounter that the Palace was not the place to go.

"Come on, Brand. We must head for the nearest city from here… Grovegarden, I think?"

Nearby was a small village with a stable, with a sleepy young man lying outside it. From the looks of it, he was obviously highly intoxicated, for he was half naked and barefoot, and reeked of alcohol. He was lying supine on a short marble table, a red glove draped over his eyes. His throaty, phlegmy snoring reverberated throughout the place, clearly causing some distress to the horses, who occasionally neighed uncomfortably.

"Excuse me, friend, may I buy one of those horses?"

The young man sat up, the glove falling off his face. "What?" he asked sleepily, his moustached lips twitching ever so slightly. "My horses… *hic* aren't exactly for sale, but if you want, I can *hic* sell you one. Which would it b- *hic* be?" He took a mug hidden under the chair and drank from it.

"I'll take this chestnut mare, then."

"That'll be… let's see… *hic*… 15 silver pieces plus 2 gold pieces equals… *hic* Nah, screw that. Just take the horse and go… *hic*"

Fortunately for the duo, the mare looked tame enough to ride already. Barius had no experience with breaking in equines, so he was thankful to this drunk young man for doing the job for him. Adjusting the saddle slightly and loading the sack onto her back, Barius then lifted a slightly disgruntled Brand up onto the saddle, before proceeding to climb onto the horse's back with the aid of a stool. Jamming his good leg into the stirrup (leaving the peg leg to dangle at one side), Barius bade farewell to the drunk young man and rode off along the forest path.

What was originally a 2 hour journey (for a one legged man like Barius) was now shortened to around 30 minutes. It could have been shorter, except for the fact that the mare was a little overloaded, with two riders and about 15kg of provisions loaded onto her back. She was strong, but not war horse strong.

"You know, Brand", Barius said to the boy, who was sitting in front of him and holding on to the mare's brown, silky mane, "We should give her a name. What do you think?"

"Asystole," Brand replied tersely, without so much as a bat of an eyelid.

"What?" Barius was confused. What was the boy trying to tell him?

"You wanted a name for her, right? Well, isn't "Asystole" a nice name?"

(Asystole is the complete cessation of heart activity, and usually spells certain death for the victim.)

Barius was confused, as he did not know the meaning of the word "asystole". This boy sitting in front of him was much more intelligent and knowledgable in such things than he was, though he seldom let out. Besides, the word "asystole" had a nice ring to it.

And so it came to pass that the 2 year old chestnut mare came to be known (at least, to Barius and Brand) as Asystole.

The journey down the snowy forest path continued, with Asystole trotting along, and Barius attempting to engage in small talk with Brand, mostly getting tongue-in-cheek one line replies. Despite the rude, unfriendly outward appearance, however, Barius could feel that the boy was already beginning to warm up to him a little bit, in his own pessimistic, grumpy way. He had begun to talk less about killing himself or setting explosives in cities, though he still retained his deeply morbid sardonicism and introversion.

Barius, of all people, knew that it was not hard to gain the trust and respect of someone like Brand, someone who had gone through torments no human being should have had to go through. The fact that he was even able to survive it all was truly astonishing.

As the boy slowly fell asleep to the repetitive trotting, squelching sound of Asystole's hooves on the snowy path, Barius smiled, adjusting the boy's hat and covering him more tightly with the coat.

Barius had high hopes for what they would find in the city known as Grovegarden to the majority of people and as Gräðgarðúr to the people of Titrað. The village he hailed from had a dialect of its own, which was now effectively, thanks to the mercenaries who invaded those decades ago, extinct. Barius himself wasn't very fluent in the language, or rather, not fluent enough to teach others in order to keep it alive. As far as he was concerned, this dialect would follow him to the grave.

The thought of it often drove him to tears.

By this time, Brand was already fast asleep, occasionally mumbling incoherently in his sleep. The road had become significantly less rocky, as evident from Asystole's smoother, faster walking. They were nearing the city of Grovegarden. Barius beamed to himself, as the first sign cum milestone appeared along the road, signifying their arrival at the city, and the dawn of hope.

"Brand! We're here!"

---


WESTGROVE



GROVEGARDEN: 250 METRES
KAVKA: 10 KILOMETRES
ROTTÆRHEIM: 14 KILOMETRES
LIEBFRAUMILCH: 22 KILOMETRES
MENGARUT: 58 KILOMETRES

We are currently 25% through Donald Trump's presidency.
................................................................................................................................................................................................................
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Asterdan
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Postby Asterdan » Tue Aug 18, 2015 9:43 pm

ApplePieistan wrote:
Asterdan wrote:
"Keep them," Ril replied, "After the King discovered the stolen clothes, he assumed you needed them. You are debt-free. I'm just curious as to why you need to steal. If you are that bad off, simply asking King Fiiral would get you the same results. Although, I know from experience it is less fun."

Rilamus chuckled a bit as he reminisced on his days as a member of the Thieves Guild, his smile fading as his thoughts turned to his time as an assassin, then a soft smile returning as his mind came to his current position. Looking at the girl, he could feel a kindred spirit.

"I was once a member of the Thieves Guild," he explained, "so I know the thrill of the theft, as well as what drives someone into that life. A native of Southfall, I had little choice."

"You think I steal for fun?" Alissa said with slight aggression. "Do you know how I feel when I break and enter in a rich man's manor? Scared. I fear for my life whenever I take a step on another man's land. I know that king is greedy and doesn't care the slightest bit about foreigners. I hear his prayers; he said that people like me are his last priority. The art of theft is all I have to pay the rent and eat every day."


"You misunderstand," Ril replied, "He wants to help the other Kingdoms, but he has to make sure the many people who look to him for guidance, assistance and protection are taken care of first. I am a foreigner, but I call the Kingdom of the West my home, and thus I am one of those that look to the King, just as the people in every kingdom look to their Kings.

You mistake his love for his people for hatred of others, when that's not the case, young one. Fiiral believes that a King's duty lies primarily to his people. That ANY King's duty lies primarily to his people, not just the King of the West, but the Kings of the South, North and East. As soon as he is sure that his people will people will be okay, then he'll send aid to the Kingdoms that will receive his aid.

Besides, if he were so greedy, he would not let you go debt-free because he feels you need the clothes.

As for 'fun', I never said anything about fun. I speak of thrill, that rush of adrenaline you get, that makes you ready to flee or to fight. It prepares your body. I sense a kindred spirit, otherwise I would not be speaking so much. Go to the Thieves Guild, they can certainly help with money, tell them Rilamus Andalar sent you. My name carries weight with them, and when you return with this bounty, I'm sure yours will as well."

He waited until she turned away before disappearing into the shadows, silently making his way up to the trees.
You can call me Aster. Yes, I did revive this nation... Again...

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Postby Everhall » Tue Aug 18, 2015 10:12 pm

Grovegarden, Kingdom of the West

As Brand and Barius neared the farming town, they began to notice the once snow filled ground be replaced by field upon field. As they drew even closer they saw the main settlement, a array of thirty buildings of varying reason, in the center of town lied a building that stood out, unlike the mostly wooden community, it was a building of Elven Marble, Ashen Manor, before they could get any closer, they were stopped by a guard with the sigil of Ashen on his armor,

"Name? Business?" the guard asked looking at the two

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