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Fantasy Arva: Tides of Darkness [IC]

joshuadim

the writer
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Preface

In the year 1578 of the First Era, tensions brew throughout the known world as steel clashes and blood is spilled. The North bleeds with infighting and scheming as the lords and stewards fight for influence and dominance among the jarldoms, the Riverlands burn as two of its greatest kingdoms fight to the bitter end against one another, and the Vale in a standoff between the greatest realms of Men with one another, all the while wary eyes rest upon the new strongholds of demons established across Argos. And worse yet, whispers of a terrible threat emerge from legends of the lost lands of Pengiros

Though it is in these times of conflict and war, for this in the market for it there is profit to be made through the profession of a sellsword. Mercenary work is not for the faint of heart and often breaks even the strongest of men but for those who desire coin then there is work to be done.

In the city-state of Gwell in the Riverlands, the capital of mercenary companies and brothels alike, a new regiment has arisen and is eager to hire help to fill its new ranks: Hughin’s Sellsword Company. It is here that the story of those that join this fated company will go from taking what seems to be a simple job, escorting an Utterlin barge, to an adventure that will shape the destiny of the world itself in the face of insurmountable odds and hardship.


12 Mir 1578 FE (First Era)
City of Gwell



The early hours of the morn brought about an initial flurry of activity within the Port of Ports. Harbor bells chimed softly near the waters, artisans flocked to their shops, and workers scurried to their employers to start a day like any other that has been for centuries now. The taverns opened their doors and barkeeps cleaned up after the previous night’s messes, the hungover soldiery and sell-swords went about their business elsewhere to freshen up, and within the hour of first light the city was bustling full of life once more as a stark contrast to the empty streets at night.

All manner of races mingled and spoke among each other in this mixing pot of the world in an environment unlike any other. Yet unlike in the other realms of Men, here in the Serene City of Gwell this diversity was met with relative cooperation among the differing peoples as they all worked together to advance themselves within the bustling businesses and companies available. Today was to be a particularly busy day as the harbormaster counted dozens of ships on the horizon to enter port from his view, and the workers on the piers were required to double their efforts to meet such an influx.

While the city’s port was a point of pride for its owners with regards to its capacity, there was still a long while to wait as ships were signaled to come in with a set line. One such vessel simply anchored itself and awaited to be signaled to dock on one of the piers. It was likely that they would be waiting for hours on end, and so its furred crew simply idled or passed the time with games of some sort while their captain, a seasoned veteran of the saltwater routes, kept watch with his spyglass and waited as patiently as he could while his tail slapped the boards of the deck from time to time.

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As the sun continued to rise throughout the day, a new posting appeared on the city square’s notice board among the various other contracts, job postings, and scribblings placed by citizens or businessmen. Some advertised employment opportunities for apprenticeships, others spoke about contracts to deal with a creature on someone’s property, and some even advertised individuals wanted by the law with a bounty for their kill or capture.

This particular posting however, one of numerous that had been placed around the city for maximum advertisement, showcased the newly formed “Hughin’s Sellsword Company” that was in need of bodies to fight and signups were within the Golden Talon Tavern. This caught the eye of two dockworkers who were already late for work because of their own hangovers. The first burly man looked at the posting and chuckled: “Oi, what do you reckon ‘bout this one?” he asked his friend, pointing to the logo of the posting. “I reckon we would make more coin being a sell-sword than if we kept working for that damnable dockmaster.”

“Come on now, you can’t even swing a sword, let alone wield one! You’re too fat!” the second man joked aloud as he looked at the posting himself, “Besides, it’s dangerous work this… lot of boys wind up dead within the first arn or so…”

“What? Are you saying I can’t handle meself?” the first man protested feebly, “I know how to throw a few good punches!”

“Right, and what good will punching do when you get a sword in your belly? Come on now, we’re already late as is… hopefully we don’t get pay docked.” His friend then replied as he ushered themselves along quickly to the docks for the day’s work, leaving behind the notice board for others to look upon.

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The Golden Talon Tavern was a modest establishment amidst the various taverns and inns scattered throughout the city, offering all sorts of drink, food and rest for weary travelers and workers alike within the city. The barkeep, Robert, had plenty of work ahead of him as there was quite a mess due to the spontaneous festivities of the patrons last night. Mugs and plates were scattered about the many tables inside and the floor was littered with alcoholic stains and crumbs of meals.

Although it was the early morning, a few patrons did remain inside without much hurry to return to the outside world as they talked amongst themselves in their own cliques to pass the time. On the bar however, a single man sat on one of the stools while leaning onto the countertop and waited anxiously. Hughin was taking a rather big risk starting his own unit as he not only didn’t have much coin to spare, but also desperately needed the recruits to pull off whatever jobs came their way. Yet his upstart venture did not have the same name pull as some of the heavy hitters around here, including the Golden Company that he had just left. It was unlikely he was going to get anything more than a few drunkards and braggarts as he tapped his fingers onto the counter rhythmically.

“You worry too much.” Robert spoke aloud as he swept the floor nearby with a broom to get rid of what had accumulated over the night, “Fortune favors those who take risks.”

“Doesn’t hurt to worry *sometimes*,” Hughin retorted in a sarcastic manner “although I will take an ale to help calm my nerves down a little.” The barkeep obliged as he took one of the few remaining clean mugs and poured some of the brown liquid into the cup from a keg before handing it off to the mercenary. Hughin took a few greedy sips for his parched throat before sighing. “Though I will admit, I’m not optimistic about my chances.”

“So why’d ya leave the Golden Company then?” Robert asked, “There you got good pay-“

“Right, at the expense of the people we’d be helping enslave. I can’t be a part of that, I won’t be.” Hughin replied with a glare, “I just hope I won’t have to go crawling back to them and beg for my position back. I’m sure Jean-Loup would love that, that Kalpurnian prick…” he then spoke, muttering the last part under his breath.

“Well speaking of good fortune…” Robert then said, pointing to the door as it swung open as Hughin’s lieutenant, Zakala, walked in with a cloak draped over her body and head to hide some of her more prominent demonic features. “Welcome back madame. I trust your venture outside was fruitful?” the barkeep then asked with curiosity, hoping the answer would help lift the old captain’s spirits.

Zakala shrugged as she sat next to her commander and lowered the hood from her head, “The posters are up, I placed them on every notice board around town. Now we just have to wait and see what we get.”

“Did anyone give you trouble?” Hughin asked with concern as he moved his gaze over to her.

The demoness scoffed in response, “Trouble? A few hungover hooligans tried to intimidate me but ran away when I threatened to turn their bones into a stew… or whatever bullshit humans come up with nowadays about us.”

“Mhm…” Hughin muttered before realizing something, “Say, where’s Arnas? Wasn’t he with you?”

“He *was* until he told me he needed to take care of something. Didn’t say what exactly for though…”

The captain simply grunted and returned to his drink. “And Kahzel? Where’s he at?” Hughin then asked after finishing another gulp of ale which only prompted a shrug from Zakala again. “Probably just getting up and about? I wouldn’t worry about him.” The demoness then turned her attention to the door to observe who entered and who left, as well as to silently judge those that announced themselves for recruitment.

Almost immediately after a clearly still-drunk sailor walked into the bar holding one of the recruitment posters. He reeked over stale alcohol and brine as he began to walk over: “Is this for-“

“No.” Zakala stated aloud, waving the man off as he walked back outside in disappointment.

The sudden decision baffled Robert as he motioned at the door, “Now, why would you go and tell one of the few sods in this city that were willing to sign up to piss off like that?”

“I trust my lieutenant’s judgement.” Hughin replied, having not even turned around and continued to focus on his drink before setting his mug down and pinching the bridge of this nose. “Gods, this is going to be a long day today isn’t it?” he asked to himself under his breath.
 
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Beann

The Bean
Roleplay Availability
Roleplay Type(s)
"Ah, you monks are way too kind for this world," a frail, old woman grumbled as her shaky hands reached for the bowl of porridge that was being handed to her by Brother Merrick. The woman was dressed in torn garbs, her fingernails almost blackened and her hair appeared to have never been washed. Her hand shook weakly as she brought a spoonful of porridge up to her lips, slurping loudly as the monk before her spoke. "We only wish to give back what Arva has blessed us with." With a small bow and a kind smile, Brother Merrick led the way for the other monks to follow. They traveled in either groups of three or four, aiding peasants in nearby cities with food or clothing. Aelestra found herself as the third monk among the group, taking in the sights of Gwell. The smell of the nearby ocean was pleasant though she was certain it would be ruined by the stench of fish if they wandered too close to the docks. Unfortunately, they were headed in that direction as most of the peasants hung around there, hoping someone would take pity on them and give them work to do.

"What do you think of Gwell, Aelestra?" Brother Merrick's question reeled in her attention, forcing Aelestra to think a bit. After a few seconds, she simply shrugged in response. Given that she hadn't been in the city for more than a day, she couldn't really give a solid answer. Aelestra neither liked nor disliked the city as it had its ups and downs to it as any other. Brother Merrick let out a slight chuckle as they continued through the streets of Gwell. "Yeah, it's not for everyone. My mother was born here actually, used to tell me stories about the fish her father - my grandfather caught," he explained, to which Aelestra simply nodded in acknowledgement to his words. She recalled a couple stories her own father used to tell her, some were about his own childhood, other times they were about the troubles her brothers got in way before she was born. Her eyes shifted down to her feet as the memories surfaced, wondering what became of all her siblings. She wasn't sure what she would even do if she were to encounter one of them on her travels. How would they see her now? It had been quite some time, maybe they wouldn't even recognize her.

"H-Hey-! You guys...are monks...yeah?" After being addressed, all three monks turned to look at a stumbling drunk man that was approaching them from behind, or at least trying to. Aelestra's eyes followed the man's footsteps, one after the other, almost tripping over each step even though his hand was pressed up against the nearest building to steady himself. His other hand held a half empty bottle and if the stench didn't give away his intoxication, his speech surely did. "Yes, we are." Brother Merrick replied in a neutral tone as he stepped in front of both Aelestra and the other monk that accompanied them. "M...Monks help people...yeah? Give...Give me gold...I don't got anymore...to buy more…" He held up his bottle of alcohol in the air before downing the rest. "Unfortunately we only provide food and clothing to those in need," Brother Merrick replied calmly as he watched the drunken man throw his empty bottle over his shoulder before continuing to stumble on over to them. "In need...you monks always think you're...above everyone... I'M IN NEED!" Aelestra took one step forward in preparation to neutralize the man but as the drunkard pulled his fist back, he tripped over his own foot and fell flat on his face. After waiting a couple seconds, it was assumed that the man had blacked out.

"Well then...let us get going," Brother Merrick sighed as he took one last look at the fool on the ground before turning heel and continuing in the direction of the docks. However, Aelestra did not move just yet as a certain poster on a nearby notice board caught her attention. Rather than follow her fellow brothers, she walked towards the board to get a closer look. "Aelestra? What is it?" Brother Merrick looked over his shoulder once he noticed that she was no longer following them. She pointed in response to the specific paper she was reading through, a recruitment message for able bodies to join Hughin's Sellsword Company. "Ah, another recruitment for mercenaries. They do any job that rewards pay on completion." Aelestra nodded in acknowledgement to Brother Merrick's explanation before carefully taking off the poster from the notice board. "Oh? You're interested, Aelestra?" She nodded once more to which Brother Merrick rubbed the back of his neck in thought. "Well, I will not stop you but I should warn you that they typically take men who can wield swords or other weapons…" Aelestra raised her fists in response, causing Brother Merrick to chuckle. "I suppose you have a point, Aelestra. It wouldn't hurt getting more information about it and should you decide it isn't a good fit, your brothers and sisters at the monastery will always welcome you with open arms."

Aelestra offered the two monks a deep bow before walking off in the opposite direction. While she had been with Brother Merrick and the others for quite some time, she was not reluctant to leave them for another opportunity. Mainly because she knew they would welcome her back regardless but also because she had never allowed herself to grow too close to them. Rather than dwelling on the thought, she approached the first friendly face she saw, holding the poster up and pointing at the name of the tavern that was written on there. After acquiring the directions to get to the Golden Talon Tavern, Aelestra set off once more.

Upon entering the establishment, the first thing she noticed was that it wasn't as pact as she expected to be. To be fair it was still quite early in the day but she expected at least a few more bodies milling about. Aelestra's gaze fell upon a man seated at the bar. Next to him was a female with unusual features but nothing worthy of judging. She looked around at the rest of the people that occupied the tavern, they were all talking amongst themselves or drinking, not seemingly the type to be recruiting. These two, however, seemed to be waiting for something or someone. Walking on over to them, she held up the poster before pointing to herself, indicating her interest.
 

Breadman

Big loaf supreme
"Don't know why we're here boss, place is a dump." The bird cawed as he landed on her shoulder. "One flight above and I didn't even see one decent object to steal. Just the smell of fish and piss all the way up in the sky." Every day something new to complain about.

"Oh fish? Mmmm, sounds delicious." Now the cat chimed as it awoke from her nap. "What kind did you see birdy?"

"How should I know?" The crow cawed with indignation "Do I look like an eagle to you?"

"Oh you have the eyes to steal shinny objects, but not to see what fish are sold for little old me? You wound me." The cat's sarcasm was punctuated by her attention being focused on cleaning herself.

"Enough. Both of you." The witch finally said something as she got up from the ground. The tree she was sitting under had provided ample shade as she had rested from the long journey. "Lora, you're about as hungry as I am so fret not. Your belly will be full as soon as I find something suitable." She then turned her attention to the bird on her shoulder "And you Oros. I send you to see if there was anyone of interest. Not for you to find something to shove your beak into."

"Right...er, sorry boss." Oros shook his. "Right. Interesting people. Well there was bounty board I saw. Some mercenary types hung around it. Might be those you're looking for?"

"They better be." Fraskia picked up her staff and tapped the ground with it. Lora stopped whatever she was doing and curled up into a ball in the witch's feet before disappearing into a mist. "Where did you say it was again?"

"Past the gates and near the market." He nodded his head "Can't miss it, boss." Fraskia petted the bird and it soon followed his furry companion back into the same ether from where they were summoned.

"Right then." The witch looked to the gates and proceeded to walk towards them in a leisurely pace. If what she was told was indeed correct, then they wouldn't be gone or in a hurry. Not yet at least. The guards were easy enough to get through. She just needed to flash the official seal of the Lodge and she would be let through. There were odd looks towards her of course. Having an animal skull tied to one's hair would do that. Plus the staff having an eerie green glow to it. She just rolled her eyes at any city dweller that was perplexed by it. 'Yes yes, you lived your entire life in a boring little house surrounded by stone walls and your closest neighbor throws his shit out the window. A basic enchantment would be a reason to gawk at.' At least the people living outside these walls would get out of her way instead of just freeze in place. Its why she spend the night outside. Less hassle with these people.

Eventually she made it to the bounty board and curled her nose up to the look of some of those mercenaries. The absolute state of them. Hopefully the she will be dealing with the better ones. With sneer, she pushed her way through to the board to find what she was looking for. Hughin’s Sellsword Company at the Golden Talon Tavern. Good, now she needed to find the bloody place. She needed Lora. Pushing and shoving her way back, she found a nice spot to tap the ground for the black cat to appear from a puff of smoke. This got some more people gawking, but she needed to ignore them for now. The crow was good for observing areas, but the cat was the one who could find something as long as Fraskia knew what she was looking for.

It didn't take long for it to start walking with the witch trailing behind her. More looks and more annoyance. Fraskia breathed a sigh of relief as they found the establishment. Lora just walked in, clearly not wanting to get send back just yet. 'Damn cat might cause a stir with the owners.' She let out a frustrated sigh 'Familiars are just as useful as they are useless.'

"Good morning." She said as she entered the tavern "I'm looking for Hughin and his company. Lodge business."
 
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joshuadim

the writer
A few minutes had passed prior to Aelestra's entrance as both Hughin and Zakala anxiously awaited anyone else who would seek their luck in recruiting. One drunk sailor was hardly inspiring any confidence in the time being and the captain was already well on his way to drinking his second cup of watered down ale before the door opened to reveal the first likely contender for a spot in the company. She didn't look like the average would be upstart mercenary which immediately made her more attractive as an option to take up for Zakala as she gave a quick pat to Hughin's arm, "Looks like we got someone." she whispered before Aelestra wordlessly indicated her interest.

Before Zakala could answer however, another woman entered and announced herself as 'Lodge business', which not only stirred Hughin away from looking down at his drink but also got him to talk: "You handle the new potential recruit. I'll deal with Ms. Business over here." Hughin said as he spun about in his seat to face Fraskia, "Aye, I'm Hughin. And what business does the Lodge have with the likes of me?" he asked with curiosity as he leaned his back onto the bar countertop and watched the witch approach.

Zakala meanwhile returned her attention to Aelestra: "So... what skills do you possess that make you want to join up?" A preliminary question to scout out skills a company such as theirs might need.
 

SniperComZero

genuinely awful person
Just a short jaunt away from the city's ports, in what would loosely be described as a sector of 'industry', full of artisans and crafters aplenty, a knight sat upon a bench, having borrowed a sharpening stone from a blacksmith just behind them. Drawing it over the blade's edge repeatedly. Just across the road, a somewhat androgynous man, face half-obscured by shadow, peered towards a notice board. Taking in all the... well, rather mundane notices that had been posted up on it. It was hard for him to focus, though, since his body seemed to tense up every time the stone passed across metal. Still. Dockworking, petty criminal bounties... hum. Mercenary work, that could be a nice avenue... His train of thought was, unfortunately, broken, as a passerby walked through him, dispelling his form for but a few moments, with no reaction, as though he weren't in the material realm whatsoever.

<< Humf. The nerve of some people nowadays. >> His voice carried far enough to where the knight was sitting, and quiet enough to where no one else could hear. She looked up towards him, for but a moment, before she dragged the stone across steel in a particularly harsh fashion, sending a shiver down the man's spine. << Tch-- you know that I hate it whenever you do it like that, Alarael. >> While she felt a chuckle come out from her throat, she didn't look up towards him. << And you know that I have to do it. Would you rather I beat someone across the head with a blunt sword? >> Were she to be actually speaking, those around would hear a deep, somewhat raspy voice come from the woman, throttled by age and exertion both. << I'd rather you not break it and send me into at least two pieces. But with how hard you swing that thing, probably more. >> Her brow furrowed beneath her helmet as she ran her thumb perpendicular to the blade's edge. << I'm not going to break it, Velyon. It's hardly like I can buy another weapon and lug you around like dead weight-- more than I already did. Anyway, it's a good sword. You're paranoid. >>

Velyon folded his arms, ears lowering beneath his hood. << Mmhm, right, I'm sure. Anyway. There's apparently a new mercenary party that's starting up. >> << And? If I wanted to become a mercenary, I'd just join the Golden-- >> << We both know why you wouldn't join the Golden Company. >> Alarael audibly sighed, resting the hilt of her weapon up against her shoulder to look up at him. << Yes, fine, we both know they're awful. But why should I be any more inclined to join a new group of miscreants? >> << Because. It's simple fact that they'd take more... odd jobs, right? >> << Mhm, and? >> << Thus, there's at least a better chance that we can get closer to undoing... this, than, well. Going on the same trajectory we have been. >> She puckered up her lips, tapping her foot against the ground for a few moments before exhaling through her nose. << Fine. >> She wasn't at all happy about joining up with some random mercenary company, but he had a point. She had no idea where she was going, beyond simple drifting and hoping that she'd stumble upon something big. But, that hadn't happened thus far, so maybe a course correction was needed.

Alarael lifted herself to her feet, standing a full head and a half higher than the apparition she had been conversing with. It wasn't that hard, considering he was shorter than anyone else that was walking past, but, she did still have the height advantage on most anyone who was walking past at that particular moment. Leaving the stone on her seat, since, in all actuality, she had little care for what happened to it, and muscling through the morning hustle to get to the notice board. << The Golden Talon Tavern. Velyon, you're the one with the memory, do you know where it is? >> His reply came with all the snark typical of answering a stupid question. << Sister dearest, you know that my memory isn't as good as to perfectly pinpoint where we may or may not have been once in some huge city like this. >> << Typical. >> Well, she'd just have to take the poster from the notice board, and wander the city until she actually managed to find this place, along with her brother in tow.

...Not like he could go anywhere else, anyway.

- - - - - - -
Muscling through the door, Alarael had to crouch just slightly to enter properly, scanning around the somewhat empty confines of the tavern. It was an absolute mess, too. She might've had cold feet, were it not for the fact this were the best way she could even hope to carry forward. A particularly interesting group, four-- no, now five, patrons, sat by the bar and conversing with one another. They seemed dressed rather well-- for anyone in this city, anyway, so, even if they weren't the proprietors of the mercenary group, they could probably point her to them.

She held the flyer up in one hand, approaching. "You wouldn't happen to be able to--" With her sharp, elvish sense of hearing, and a glance back towards the advertisement, she was able to quickly then pick up that one of them was, in fact, the company's figurehead. Well, that answers that question. Her hand dropped to her side, as she gazed between everyone there from behind the slits in her helmet. << Velyon, this is turning into an increasingly bad idea. >> Her brother, once again visible to Alarael and Alarael alone, peeked from behind her at the group. << They... might surprise you? >> << Doubt it. >>
 

Dmaster

Sautekh Nemesor
The journey from the South Spire to Gwell was long and somewhat trying for the aged Fateseeker, made only possible by him finding spots to ride in trade caravans or barges. Grateful for any and all assistance provided to him on the legs of his arduous journey from the South Spire, the Aervis made sure to pay back the hospitality in kind with the great magic he weaved. Conjuring water as they crossed through the vast desert of The Hanori Steppes, warming flames as they crossed the vast mountain ranges, or even keeping rain and gales at bay. The Aether provided where it was needed most, and it was his duty to spread its gifts wherever he may.

Finally Da'Vost had entered Gwell on the day he was fated to, when the company would be beginning its recruitment campaign. The towering avian figure was clad in white and gold robes, his hooked beak clacking quietly as he made his way into the city to begin his search. Aervis were generally a rare sight outside of their spires, though Gwell itself was so diverse that he was able to take note of a few of his kin living among these people. If any of them would spot him they may look on him in slightly reserved reverence, the complete lack of wings telling them that he was a Fateseeker.

Stepping through the crowd with a relaxed gait, the Aervis would twitch and turn his head as he ingested the information presented on the bounty board. His ultimate destination was a certain Golden Talon Tavern. Asking for directions to the locale was a rather trivial affair, and from there he managed to make his way to the bustling bar. Inside he took note of those inside while he stood in the doorway with a curious gaze, sweeping his beady eyes across everyone in the room before they finally fell upon Hughin and Zakala. He recognized them from his vision, though he did not know their names.

Slowly he approaches them and ignores everyone else, bowing his hooded head while his palms clasp together. "Mercenary leaders, I greet you in the light of the Aether." he begins, tone almost raspy and staggered, suggesting that he was having some trouble pronouncing the words. A low caw rumbled through his throat before he continued, rising from his bow. "I am Da'Vost, a Fateseeker hailing from the South Spire. I come seeking to offer my services to you, as the Aether has ordained it." The visions he had received of this company were numerous, the faces of them and others as well as their banner flying, tattered in the blazing embers on the wind.
 
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Anne Boolean

One Thousand Club
Roleplay Availability
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a9f8005b6a2ef26339e9fbc2b19e924a.jpg
Kahzel

Safety had always been Kahzel's top priority, whether it was for himself or for the people he cared about. In his past, he had done whatever was necessary for the sake of safety, but now, the flyers he carried about and posted around town displayed in eye catching fonts the risk he was taking. Freedom came with risks, he had learned recently, and if one was to be free, they could never be truly safe.

Once his hands were empty, he returned to the meeting place where he and his partners for this new business venture agreed to see it take off. The Lusvoni had hoped dawn's light would signify the drunkards from the night before had found a place to sleep it off, yet he found some intoxicated hecklers who had something to say about his red skin and horns. He simply ignored the words, as in the arena one needed a shell thick enough to withstand blades, but when one of the inebriated men came too close, Kahzel gave him a hard shove away. The other rabble-rousers, enraged after seeing this, attempted to close in too, but were quickly subdued with a fist to the gut or a kick to the back of the knee in their drunken state.

As The Golden Talon came into sight, the Draevir's yellow eyes fell onto a man walking out of the establish with a dejected slump and a robed woman stepping in. Following her was a cat leading a woman with a staff and another animal's skull in her hair, a knight clad in plate armor, and a tall avian fellow dressed in white and gold. Either The Golden Talon was magically pulling in quite the diverse crowd, or their recruitment was working. They were certainly not the average civilian, but Kahzel had seen enough eccentricities in the arena to not be phased by them. Based on just their appearance, the twenty-five year old didn't imagine they were capable fighters, but his matches had proven time and time again looks can be deceiving.

The young man stepped into the building, scanning its few patrons seated throughout the room as well as taking note of the small crowd forming in front of the bar. He would have assumed they were all here for a drink, but seeing most of them addressing either of his superiors let Kahzel identify them as potential recruits. He slipped past a few of the individuals standing about to take a place next to Hughin and Zakala.

"The posters were more eye-catching than we hoped," he commented quietly to either of the two before taking a seat on a barstool next to them. For the most part, he planned on allowing them to handle this administrative business, though would step in and help out if called upon.

Interactions: Hughin, Zakala ( joshuadim joshuadim )
Nearby: Aelestra ( Beann Beann ), Fraskia ( Breadman Breadman ), Alarael, Velyon ( SniperComZero SniperComZero ), Da'Vost ( Dmaster Dmaster )
 

Breadman

Big loaf supreme
Fraskia looked to Hughin with a bit of disappointment. Was this really the man she was to meet?
Aye, I'm Hughin. And what business does the Lodge have with the likes of me?
"Frankly, I haven't the faintest." She didn't want to waste the man's time as much as her own. "One of our seers had a vision regarding you. She insisted that we send an agent to establish contact with you somehow. Given that you're rather...well, small as a mercenary band, you're quite difficult to track." She noticed that Lora had managed to get up on the counter next to her. Spoiling to stir something this one "In any case, I am ordered to offer my abilities at your disposal. I offer nature and elemental magic that I control and that of my familiars." She pointed with her staff towards the cat on the counter "That's one of them."

"Hello." Lora stopped cleaning herself long enough to say something before going back to business.

"Excuse her manners. She lacks most of them." Fraskia was finished with her introduction and waited for Hughin to say something. She did notice the woman next to them. Either a new recruit or a returning member. There was something off about her. Something magical. Before Fraskia could ask, she was left speechless by the Fateseeker. Her jaw was hung for a second before she regained her composure. What in the Seven hells was going on? And not to mention the second demon that just walked in. "I might be beginning to understand why I'm here." She finally commented. "Please, continue your recruitment." Fraskia planted her staff in the floor and leaned on it, her interest completely piqued.
 
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Beann

The Bean
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Just as Aelestra expressed her interest in joining, a female voice echoed through the tavern, causing her to look over her shoulder for a moment. She raised her eyebrow in suspicion as she eyed the animal skull that was laced to the woman’s hair. More importantly though was the black cat that entered along with her. It reminded her of the few farm cats she owned as a child, great animals for keeping the rat population down. Aelestra turned back to the man she had initially approached. Her assumptions were correct as he was Hughin himself and the woman by his side must be a partner in the recruitment. She watched as he turned his attention to the other woman, wondering what the Lodge was. It mattered little to her as her eyes set upon the black cat once more as she instinctively kneeled down and held out her hand to coax the animal into approaching her.

Slowly standing back up to her full height, Aelestra held her fists up, assuming a solid fighting stance to answer Zakala’s question. She held the position for a few seconds to emphasize her point in hand to hand combat before lifting a finger. Neatly folding the recruitment poster she possessed, she slipped it into her bag before rummaging through it for something else. A few new faces distracted her from effectively retrieving what she was looking for as she paused particularly to stare at an interesting avian individual who introduced himself as Da’Vost. Her eyes then shifted over to another man that had similar horns to the woman in front of her, only he took a seat comfortably next to them, indicating that he already must be part of the company. Aelestra gave him a puzzled look, glancing at Da’Vost and then back at him to gesture that she had no idea what a Fateseeker was.

She was so caught up in all these unique individuals that she had completely forgotten her plan to communicate with Hughin’s partner. Quickly digging through her bag, she pulled out a clump of papers that were bound together by leather strips and a piece of charcoal. Finding an empty space on the current page, she started to write. ‘Aelestra. Nomadic monk.’ She held out the paper to Zakala for her to read though admittedly her handwriting was a bit poor.

Anne Boolean Anne Boolean (gave Kahzel a puzzled look)
 
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Out of all the myriad adventures Soong had embarked on, few were as curious and ultimately wonderous as this; a journey that has, for her, proven to be unlike any other. From the furthest corners of the East, across the vast territories of both Liudong and Manwon, across the Glistering Sea, to the Lowlands. Then, on foot, the long, long journey through the roads of the Lowlands, thrusting into the Vale; a likewise road-lead travel, into the Riverlands. Wherein, after months of travel featuring virtually every avenue of fortune and misfortune, Soong, the wandering, minstrel, contented Monk, finally arrived at her long-awaited destination: Gwell.

Arriving at the gates, Soong let forth a contented sigh, followed by a smile. She, donning her strangely-refined, yet simple grey attire stretches in place, rotating her arms around her shoulder; a stretch, prompting the bamboo cane held in her right hand to rise with her hand, of course. Atop her head, a conical hat, likewise made of bamboo--a sturdy, strong material--shading face from the sun, and to some extent, providing a "shade" for the rest of her body. Though, her grey robe, fortunately, does the trick in of itself, for the most part, shielding her from the piercing sun. She, for a moment, peers up the sky, however, as though piercing them to peer to the heavens. Her smile expands, just for a moment, and her head dips, black hair flowing with the wind for just a moment. For a moment, she speaks in her native Liudong tongue, ushering a few words beneath her breath; a prayer, gratitude, and of a wish partially-fulfilled. For all this was just the beginning, for her. Indeed, shifting her head and gaze downwards, she peers directly forth, towards the bustling streets of the great port city. Onwards.

Onwards Soong went, then, proceeding into the city, wherein her attention is immediately grabbed by virtually every facet of it; the architecture, the people, the diversity, everything. Were circumstances different, Soong would certainly take the time to investigate it all, thoroughly, even the stones--especially the stones, in fact, to learn of their material, where it was extracted--everything to know about it, for Soong to memorize. For, to her, such things tend to make all the difference. Along the way, Soong certainly attracts a gaze here and there, for no other reason than her completely-foreign, eastern attire. Yet, to this, Soong merely offers smiles and bows back, the strange, small, 4'10" ball of harmonious joy that she is. But, along the way, something in particular catches her attention. Whilst she strolls happily and with a smile upon her face, humming whilst her head tilts from side to side, Soong's monolid, brown eyes catch a particular poster. She, craning her head to the side, stops in her tracks, taking a moment to read its contents. It did not take her long, and neither did it take her long to come to a conclusion on what to do about it. An ultimate opportunity, for her, and one that would not only enable her to explore the world, but be paid for it. A sweet deal indeed.

Quickly, the far-eastern monk peers around, curious as to where the tavern may be. Never one to be afraid to ask others, she looks to the closest individual nearby, a rather lofty man carrying several crates, easily far taller than herself, and speaks, her heavy, Liu accent apparent immediately. "Ah, pardon," she coos, tone soft, and equally friendly, "a moment of your time, sir?" She smiles, and the burly fellow carrying the crates stops. He, deadpan, looks over to Soong, speaking in turn with a gruff voice. "A bit busy, miss, but," the man grunts, heaving himself up; the crates are getting heavier by the second, now that he stand idle and not focused. "Sure." Soong quickly speaks in turn, dipping her head. "The Golden Talon tavern, do you know of its location?" She inquires, to which the gruff crate-carrier replies with, fortunately, its location, though his strained voice made it a tad unclear. Soong smiles, to that, and dips her head once more. "You have my thanks, friend. Here, I shall assist you." With that said, she stands across from the burly, stronger-at-a-glance man, and proceeds to place a hand beneath the crate. She, carrying her own, looks to the man, who appears both appalled and confused. Yet, he shrugs. Less work for him. The duo promptly place away the crate along the dock, and the apparent-sailor offers his thanks, to which Soong, of course, refuses, believing such things unnecessary. She, after that, made her way to the tavern, though certainly in no rush, taking her time to enjoy the city along the way.

Eventually, Soong arrives, however, and standing just before the door, allows a moment for her imagination to flourish; for the adventures that may come, she finds her mind, body, and soul, unified in excitement for the future. A harmony that, even for decades-trained monks, is scarce to find, each typically pushing at one another in opposing states. Yet, now, more than ever, Soong knows this is her path. Hence, she takes a step inside, and nigh-immediately notices the gathering crowd therein, armored and clad with a variety of gear. All of whom, in their own right, unique; Soong immediately feels the pull to learn of each and every one of them, thoroughly. For each of them, surely, have incredible stories to tell. And for this alone, Soong must know them better--all of them. She makes her way on over, then, gradually, like some decades-old wizard or monk, using her bamboo cane extensively along the way. Upon getting close to the others, she, the far-eastern, smiley monk, speaks, her heavy accent once more made apparent. "Greetings, friends." She opts to, for now, stand, gaze shifting back and forth to each individual around and nearby her. A smile grows across her face, head craning to the side; a sign of curiosity and bliss, for her. Good times are sure to come.
 

joshuadim

the writer
Hughin listened intently regarding the witch's intentions which included the mention of a seer having a vision involving him and his company. Interesting news considering it hadn't existed until about a month ago. Yet he wouldn't dare question such things, especially coming from the Lodge. Such a realm was quite beyond his expertise and it was not his place to speak on such matters. It seemed as though she was taken aback by the appearance of an Aervis, and Hughin was as well, before the witch simply resigned to watch what would unfold with the rest of the recruits. He took a quick look and saw what appeared to be a flood of people that showed interest, which was good considering they needed the bodies but also a pain given they could only do two at a time. Kahzel's arrival did help relieve the tension a bit as the draevir took a seat next to Hughin and commented on the situation.

"Yeah," he replied to his cohort in arms in a hushed tone, "Let's see how good this stock is." He took a moment to look over who was next in line and waved over the Fateseeker to appraoch. He looked at the strange being for a moment, considering it wasn't every day one came across someone like him, before speaking again: "So... you're not the only one to see me in a vision it seems." he stated to Da'Vost as he motioned his head over towards where Fraskia stood watch at. "The fates must find me popular. Well, it's not everyday one comes across an Aervis that... wants to be a sellsword. So I *must* accept your offer of your services." He chuckled at the prospect of what appeared to be luck on his side as he motioned to his surroundings: "Well then, make yourself comfortable Fateseeker. Robert'll tend to whatever drink or food needs you might need as we get everything sorted."

With their first official recruitment made a done deal, Hughin turned to see Zakala dealing with Aelestra who was apparently not prone to speaking. "Oh, you dont... speak... interesting." she commented to the lady after she had described herself as a monk and proficient in using her fists to fight. "Fist fighting... hmm." she then said, looking to Hughin for his input as he shrugged, "Fists alone won't do much against armor. But we can get that settled with some weapons to match your style." he stated with confidence to Aelestra before giving Zakala a pat on the back as he turned his attention to the next person. Zakala meanwhile nodded to Aelestra, "Alright. In that case I suppose that's good enough." she then spoke with a slow nod which signaled her approval. She did want to comment on and ask the monk about why she didn't speak, but decided that it wasn't the right time at the moment to speak of something potentially insensitive. Instead she motioned to the rest of the tavern, "Like Hughin said, make yourself comfortable here... with whomever else we recruit."

Now two for two on recruitments with this batch, spirits among both Hughin and his lieutenant were raised with confidence as the former moved on to wave over the large knight with the even larger sword while Zakala focused on the eastern monk. Both asked the same question as their recruitment processes started: "What skills do you have and how well can you fight?"
 

Dmaster

Sautekh Nemesor
Da'Vost frowned slightly behind his beak as Hughin thought that their significant meeting was made because fate found him popular. While he was intelligent enough to understand that it was a simple jest, he was hopeful that the grave future that he foresaw would not come to pass with this group. If it were, the Fateseeker was hoping to make sure that that he could have a role in suppressing or righting it. To that end it would have been wise for him to disclose his true reasons for coming to the group, the future he was working to prevent with all of his being. Yet now was not the time for such things, as they would only think him insane if he were to start with constant warnings of a calamity he did not fully have the details of.

"I thank you, good sir. I will do my best to provide the company with all of my being." the Fateseeker replied simply, a hand to his chest as he bows yet again. "I shall retire to one of these tables. Perhaps I may acquire a bowl of water and some dried meat." With that he began to shift away from the two leaders of the growing group, looking to Fraskia as he had noted her slack-jawed gaze out the corner of his eye moments ago. "I apologize if my appearance disturbs you. Though the Aether provides many blessings to my kin I do argue that red eyes are rather unsettling." Da'Vost asserts, starting to make his way to one of the free tables before taking a seat. Once there he unhooks the large tome hooked to the sides of his robe and begins reading, the pages filled with many runes, sigils, and symbols that most magically inclined might not even recognize or understand. One of the pages he was looking over looked to have an equivalent of a star map on it, at least.
 
Observing carefully, Soong cranes her head to the other side, now, ever-curious. To meet another monk was something she hadn't expected--particularly here, so far, far away from home. It is nonetheless a pleasant surprise, and she takes a moment to peer over to the monk. Her expectations are, expectantly, subverted, with Aelestra looking nothing like she had expected. A pleasant surprise, and Soong is surely curious to hear of what Aelestra may practice, and perhaps bear witness to it herself. She herself is, after all, a monk, one from birth, no less. A question for another time, however, as Soong's attention is shifted right back over to duo before her. She levels out her head, now, her smile gleaming ever-more. She listens intently to that which they have to say, and promptly responds as Zakala lays his gaze upon herself. "Ah, I am but a monk. I have trained since I was a little girl, in fact. I am also practiced in the art of Qi and with a variety of weapons, although I need only my body to fight." She coos, softly, her tone as friendly as can feasibly be, voice likewise soft, albeit heavily accented. Soong makes no further comment on her physical prowess, opting instead to remain transparent, simple, laconic to an extent. "Ah, I can also cook, too, and play music for those yearning to hear it. I fancy myself a wanderer, too. I've a good sense for direction, I believe." She nods sagely, smiling all the more. This is quite the exciting thing, for her. Scarcely, if ever, has she been interviewed like this. New, wonderful experiences. "Oh, ah, I also can brew some special drinks, should I have the ingredients." She chuckles, but nods, briefly recalling shared drinks in the past. Monk drinks are the best drinks, especially for cultivation.
 

Oreo Cookie

Rich and Delicious
The increasingly noisy ambience of the Port of Ports did not help ease the alcohol induced headache Brikaria was currently battling. A nearby ship captain barked an order to someone, his command only serving to grate on her ears and cause her temple to flare with pain. The grey demoness scowled and retrieved a wineskin that hung on her waist. She twirled it idly, feeling a twang of annoyance when she realized how close to empty it was. She was sellsword who worked on many jobs, none of which had yet to involve ships or the sea. Yet time and time again, she found herself spending most of her time and coin in Gwell's ports. The sailors typically knew how to handle their drink after all, and she welcomed the drunken distractions they often offered. Unfortunately, she had spent the last of her coin during the escapades of last night, the consequences of which were currently bearing down on her with full force. She was going through a dry streak in terms of contracts, more specifically contracts she wanted to take. Seeing as her funds were now zero, she supposed she'd just have to take what she could get. A nervous clear of the throat interrupted her thoughts and her yellow eyes fell on the source of the noise. A nervous looking cabin boy stood nearby, gesturing with a wiry arm to the box of cargo she was sitting on.

"Cap'n wants me to load up." He stated meekly.

The demoness frowned at him. Her hungover brain produced a snarky retort and she opened her mouth to say it, paused, and then closed her mouth as she thought the better of it. With a grunt she got to her feet, wobbled briefly, and then walked off to the nearest notice board. If she was going to ruin someone's day, she was going to do it with gold in her pocket. She snaked her way through the streets and alleys, her leather coat trailing behind her. Soon enough she reached her destination, and her brow furrowed as she summoned the focus necessary to read the current post and offerings. The majority of post she saw were classified as nopes. There were a handful of definitely nots, and one or two maybes. An audible groan escaped her throat while her eyes flicked between her remaining two options, and then landed on a third. A flier with a wolf emblazoned on it now caught her attention.

Hughin's Sellswo-----

A meaty hand snatched the paper up before she had even read a fraction of it. A heavyset man in dingy armor had taken it, oblivious to Brikaria and the flash of anger that crossed her face. Returning the favor, she plucked the flier out of his grip, tearing the bottom corner of it in the process.

"Ay! I was reading dat ya bloody hellspawn!" He spat.

His voice caused her head to throb, and she made an effort to keep her expression neutral as she continued to read where she left off. A new sellsword company looking for extra hands. It seemed interesting enough, and was leagues more promising than drab currently on the board. She classified it as a has potential and stashed the flier into her pocket.

"I said I was reading dat!" The man reached out to grab her by the shoulder and the demoness reacted by sidestepping away, her lip starting to curl upward in disgust. She slapped a hand onto the pommel of her sword before he did something he could later regret. They locked eyes, and for a moment she thought he'd reach for his own weapon when he backed away. He spat at her feet and walked away, mumbling a stream of curses as he did so. Satisfied, she left for her new destination, the Golden Talon Tavern.

Upon walking through the tavern doors, the first thing she did was inhale deeply. The smell of ale had become a comfort as of late, and it helped curb the pounding in her head. A quick scan of the tavern revealed that she wasn't the only peculiar face around. A couple of demons. A person in full armor. One of those magical birdfolk. The part of her brain that reasoned put two and two together and she realized that they too were probably here for the recruitment posting. Downing the last dregs of her wineskin, Brikaria strode over to the most of the people within the tavern had gathered. She wagered that's were the recruitments were taking place.
 

Breadman

Big loaf supreme
I apologize if my appearance disturbs you. Though the Aether provides many blessings to my kin I do argue that red eyes are rather unsettling.
"Not at all!" Fraskia tried to wave off his concern "Your people are a rare sight in this part of the world, someone like you even more so." She noticed the book Da'Vost was flipping through, quite curious about it's content. The runes and signs were foreign to her. There were some familiar shapes, but none of them correspond to the actual ones she knew. More people walked into the tavern to join the company. A foreigner and another demon, bringing the total to three.

The witch reached to her cat familiar and stroked its back. The creature arching it to her touch before laying down. The mercenary company was forming into something unique in its makeup and it gave her...hope. Hope that this wont be yet another dry run of an assignment. Hope that this wont be bogged down in arcane book keeping and pencil pushers. Hope that finally something exiting would happen after years of being tied to rules and regulations. Fraskia tried to anchor herself to reality. There was no guarantee for any of that happening. The possibility of this being just a fluke meeting was still there, so she would have to prepare herself for that possibility.

For now she just stood in her place, nodding along in about as friendly as a manner she could muster to those who greeted her.
 

FloweryMuffin

Chaotic Trainwreck
Erizthra had envisioned a simple for herself, when she did: She would spend all of her years holed up in the deeper halls of Kun’Dulnir, toiling away forever turning metal into blades and knives. Maybe even in death she would still wander through every nook and cranny of her realm, ensure there is no stone left she wouldn’t know of. She would go up to stare into the sun only on days where her father sold their weapons to the men of the Vale. Some distant day when her father would be around no longer she would go up on her own, sell the blades she made herself, by herself.

When and how that entire plot had been reduced to a mere pointless memory, a detail with no meaning in the grand scheme of things, it was hard to say. The episode was buried deep into a darker end of Erizthra’s mind, save for the very end.

“What even is there for ye to do, let alone see, above the rocks? Ye know nothing, nothing. Ye can look in that accursed sun without fancy travelling or what have you been spoutin’ these days. Ye may as well perish for all I care. Ain’t got no need for your blabber in this forgery.”

Doubtful to say whether or not she had said anything to that. Carved stone gave into grass and the world was an entirely different one. Greener, largely unknown, maybe endless. She had just the clothes on her back and that pair of hammers. Her father made them, practically shoved them into her hands, said “Those ain’t just for blacksmithing, they’ve many a use, y’hear that? Just don’t kill all of the bastards unlucky enough to think about insulting ye”.

She still had the damn hammers. Upkept them like she did her hair and beard. On her worse off days they made Erizthra think back to her father. When had he turned into a bitter old man? Why did he choose to hate her? It was quite pointless to ask herself the same questions over and over as if the answer would appear before her the next time she did. Well, without the damn hammers maybe she wouldn’t have lived to make it as a travelling blacksmith, fixing up the weapons of whoever. Took up some jobs escorting various people from there to somewhere else. Erizthra was always far too absorbed into the journey or gawking at some landscape to care for the looks that burned through the back of her head. She knew her beard mainly, gave her a rather obnoxious appearance.

On her current search for a new job, she turned up in Gwell, the Port of Ports as it was also called. Maybe she could snatch some sort of odd job into the port and gawk at the ocean and at the ships coming in for a change. A dwarf staring into water, utterly mesmerized by it! Hah. That image alone made her chuckle to herself.

But before Erizthra could have her little moment, she checked the notice board as other sailors were currently, staring up at a particularly interesting poster, with a drawing of a wolf. Erizthra merely snatched from the hands of the sailors “Hand it over darn it, you ain’t got a need for this!”, earning herself a bunch of slurred curses, which she paid no mind to.

“Not quite the odd port job I’ve been looking for. Pay’s too good. Requires some muscle. Huh. Gonna take it! Golden Talon Tavern, Hughin’s Sellsword Company, right. They better be lookin’ for a blacksmith.”

With that, she set off on a long walk through the city, hoping she would turn up at the tavern by pure luck, after admiring the architecture of the buildings, pointing some out to herself occasionally, ‘how was this not buried underwater till now-“.

Erizthra turned up at a tavern eventually. Seeing that it was filled with fancy looking freaks, much like herself, she took it to be the right place. It seemed the recruitment process was already underway, but that never stopped her from joining the little gathering that had formed there, holding the poster she brought along in one hand:

“G’day! Yer in need of a blacksmith? Don’t worry, I can fight just as good as I fix up blades.”
 

Roda the Red

Nitpicker of swords
Within the inside of a middle-sized cargo ship, a man wearing merely a pair of pants layed profoundly asleep on top of a small haystack, he was fairly muscular with his torso covered in at least over a dozen minor scars, and had long messy black hair that covered most of his face. Eventually his rest was interrupted by gentle kisses, and as he opened his eyes he could see they came from a curious stallion who was leaning over the next stall, which didn't make such a good job on separating the horses since they were barely four feet tall.

"I am not made of hay, horse" said Serge as he gently pushed the stallion's face aside, he then looked at his sorroundings as his grogginess slowly faded. Memory rushed back to his conciousness as he finally realized where he was.

It had been a bit over a month since he took that job as a hired sword to protect a messenger a who had to travel from Westwatch to Liberech. it took nearly three weeks to reach the destination, the messenger was painfully talkative and to make matters worse, it turned out to be a calm and safe journey, with a single clueless bandit looking for an easy catch being the closest to a highlight of the trip, and yes the pay ended up being pretty good, but what good was that for? In the end a slightly dissapointed Serge heard word around that people looking for mercenary work would have good luck in Gwell, so without much to do he arranged with a cargo ship heading there for a cheap spot in the stables, and here he was a few days later.

About fifteen minutes later he had finished putting on his clothes and armor, some parts more tedious to put on than others. He then strapped his weapons: on his back was a large sword that walked on the line between what could be called a longsword and a greatsword, and a somewhat short and simple spear with a partisan head. On his left side was a falchion that had seen better days and on his right side a buckler was secured in place. Such an amount of weapons were a bit overwhelming to some, but Serge has a decade and a half of marching on mercenary bands, taking part in several skirmishes, and other than that he's always preffer to have alternatives in battle, so while somewhat cumbersome, he was used to his equipment. Once everything was ready he headed out to the deck.

He was greeted by a group of sailors and traders, and the captain procreeded to explain him that they were about to reach Gwell's Port. Serge decided to spend the remaining time helping around to disembark some of the cargo. It's not that he did it out of good will, but rather felt it was only proper considering how low he was charged for sleeping in that stall.

About a few hours later Serge was having a meal fairly close to the port at a local eatery. Of course, the food tasted bland, and the alcohol was quite weak, he could hardly blame the cook or the brewer though, as the times the mercenary had thoroughly enjoyed food could be counted with his fingers. On a close table, a pair of sailors could be heard talking to each other: they were talking about how a former member from a supposedly highly-regarded mercenary known as the Golden Company had decided to leave and start his own. This sounded like a good opportunity for Serge, a stranger like him would have a hard time getting accepted in a prestigious Company, but this Hughin guy might be more lenient.

"Where can i find him?" the sailors were startled by the sudden armored man standing in front of them.

At last Serge pushed the door of the Golden Talon Tavern, it was easy to find the place, as the sailors were surprisingly cooperative and good at giving directions. It was a humble tavern with just a few people actually drinking in there, instead the place was more predominantly filled with curious individuals. A couple demons, a monk, a witch, someone wearing traditional Liudong clothing, a dwarf and a towering fellow wearer of steel. Serge didn't pay much attention to any of them, he was here to work and that was It, so he just walked toward the man who fit the description he was told.

"I heard you are looking for mercenaries, i am looking for work" Serge's voice was very monotone as he "introduced" himself to Hughing and his Lieutenant.
 

joshuadim

the writer
Robert had overheard the Aervis' request for refreshments and promptly brought along a bowl of water as well as some cured pork slices on a wooden plate. "Closest thing we have to dried meat around these parts. Please, do enjoy yourself here Master... Da'Vost, was it? Regardless, on the house courtesy of the captain." The barkeep gave a courteous nod to the fateseeker before returning to his duties of continuing to clean the place after the patrons of the previous evening as best as he could as more and more potential recruits flooded into the tavern. The arrival of another demon, a dwarf, and an armor clad man with the latter two announcing themselves made Hughin yell aloud: "Aye, we'll be with you soon so just hang on."

This influx brought Hughin to quickly to turn his attention to Kahzel ( Anne Boolean Anne Boolean ) for a moment: "There's way too many right now. I'm promoting you to doing interviews as well, I'll trust your judgement." he muttered to Kahzel, "Start with the dwarf, she seemed eager." The captain then returned his attention to Alarael and awaited her response with regards to what she could bring to the table for the company. Zakala meanwhile had listened intently to what the eastern monk had said about her skills and whatnot and, while not so impressed with the concept of Qi, was intruiged by her other named skills.

"Cooking... navigation... brewing... hmm." Zakala commented as she pondered for a moment before nodding, "Alright. We could use someone that can make a decent meal anyhow. Make yourself comfortable over by the table with the... uh, fateseeker." ( katrinamuwa katrinamuwa ) she stated as directions. Once the new recruit had been settled, she then waved forward the next person to come forth. Once it was made clear who it was, she looked visibly concerned before muttering under her breath: "Oh Avena give me patience."

( Oreo Cookie Oreo Cookie ) Brikaria's approach made Zakala stare at the Morganthi demoness for a moment before flatly asking: "What can you do for the company?"
 
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SniperComZero

genuinely awful person
"What skills do you have and how well can you fight?"

It... took Alarael a second to process the question. Was he being genuine, in asking the woman taller if only just than he was, clad in plate and carrying a sword as long as hers, as to how well she can fight? She cleared her throat, before twisting her hands together behind her back. "Well, I have been a freelancing mercenary for many years, with a constant success rate. As, I suppose you would know, one oft doesn't live through a failed contract. I've killed both man and beast alike, with... relatively little difficulty. Besides that, I like to imagine my abilities of tracking are rather good, being raised in Oberys. Of course, pelting, hunting... not that I would consider myself on par with a ranger, of course."

She paused a moment. "And, though I'm no caster, I have some... rudimentary knowledge of magic." Her head canted toward the side, gaze turning towards the far wall. Or, to Alarael's gaze, Velyon, who'd made himself comfortable sitting atop the bar's counter. He felt it such a shame he couldn't experience the joys of inebriation. << Velyon, you'd know that sort of thing, right? >> His gaze was entirely deadpan, nodding his head in the direction of both the fateseeker and witch that were a short ways away. << Of course I would, had I been able to practice in the past few years. Both of them, though, would be far better at it than I ever was. >> Silently, her head tracked over her shoulder, in that direction, eyes glancing between the two of them.

Alarael's head slowly looked back to Hughin. "...Not that I'd be much more use with that, though."
 
Soong, content with her acceptance, gleefully dips her head, a gesture of appreciation. "Ah, wonderful, friend. You have my thanks for accepting me. I am honored." She dips her head, again, in another stroke of gratitude, with a hint of humility. She, with that said, equally-merrily peers to the side, looking for the feathered fateseeker. An individual that she, fortunately, easily locates, if for nothing else but his very-obviously-distinct appearance. She steadily makes her way to the man, humming all the while, with her bamboo-walking stick just so happening to keep in rhythm with her beat. Quite the satisfying thing, at least for her. "Ah, hello," she coos upon arriving relatively nearby to the fateseeker. "I hope I am not disturbing. I had not expected to meet such an esteemed individual such as yourself, in here of all places. Though, ah, I am sure you have your reasons. It is an honor, friend." She, upon speaking, peers around for a moment, yet remains standing; she's not wanting to get too comfortable yet, not having assessed how the fortune-telling bird-man will react to her in the first place. She, hence, stands just a few feet away from him, a gentle smile upon her face. A perfectly friendly impression, fitting for a monk such as herself. She does also take a moment to look towards his attire, the tomes and all, curious as to their contents. A question for another time though, perhaps, as she's, of course, needing to be welcomed in the first place.
 
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Dmaster

Sautekh Nemesor
A few rapid tilts of his head at Fraskia and Da'Vost had acknowledged her words, seeing now that he had taken the look she gave him improperly. "Ah, yes. That is quite true. It is an interesting situation we find ourselves in. While many of us explore and venture out from the Spires, we tend to keep to ourselves more often than not. While it leaves us as a tightly-knit kin held close by the bonds of the Aether, it can lead to us being... a sheltered people alien to the greater populace." he reasons, only to soon be interrupted by Robert and the food and drink brought to him. A simple meal all in all, yet the Aervis bowed his head and crooned quietly with appreciation.

"You are kind. You and Hughin both. I appreciate the hospitality and service." Da'Vost replies, slowly taking up the wooden bowl of water before he craned his neck down and started to quietly suckle the liquid up into his beak. It was immediately obvious why he would request a bowl of water rather than a mug, as a beak as large as his would have no chance of actually making its way into most cups of that kind. He then lowered the bowl gently before picking up a piece of pork in his claws, the Fateseeker's beak beginning to meticulously pry it apart before nibbling it gently.

All of this was done while keeping his tome free of mess and out of the way of any potential water droplets so that the pages aren't ruined. All for good reason, for they looked so old they may yet disintegrate in the breeze!
 

Oreo Cookie

Rich and Delicious
One of two Lusvoni here, this one being the demoness, had waved Brikaria over. She noted the redskin's tense expression as she approached, and a smirk born of amusement started to form on her lips. This was going to be interesting.
"What can you do for the company?"
The question tickled her, and Brikaria had to stifle her urge to laugh. She wasn't expecting to be interviewed. In fact, she was half-expecting the recruiter would take one look at a Morginthian demoness such as herself and immediately say 'Your hired!' A part of her wanted to demand they skip with these formalities, but she held her tongue. This group did have two Lusvoni within its ranks after all, and she supposed that fact did diminish her own worth, if only slightly. The idea that was going to have to show a hint of humility almost pained her, though that might've just been her now muted headache. With no other real other options besides one of the maybes back on the noticeboard, she decided to play nice. She made a thoughtful sound as she pondered on how to best answer the question. A second passed. Then another.

"Ah." She reached into her pocket and retrieved the crumbled, partially torn flier. After straightening it out to the best of her ability, she read from it. "Ahem. If you can swing a sword or blah blah blah, we want you. You're in luck. I can swing a sword. Pretty. Damn. Well." She made a lazy chopping motion with her hand as if to emphasize her point. "We both know what my people are good at. Just point me in the direction of whatever you need beaten or killed." She paused for a moment, her expression turning thoughtful once more. A hint of irritation edged into her voice as continued. "But if I must sweeten the deal, I can hunt if necessary and I have some knowledge in herbs and the like." She firmly crossed her arms, seemingly satisfied with herself. "So, does your company want me?"
 

joshuadim

the writer
Zakala remained quiet as she was reminded as to why both her clan's and her own distaste for the Morganthi was reiterated by the arrogance and boasting of the one that stood right in front of her. As Brikaria made her skills and abilities clear, Zakala remained expressionless as she stared straight at her while she talked. Hughin in the meantime was having better luck: "A tracker and a fighter? Impressive." Hughin said to Alarael ( SniperComZero SniperComZero ) as he nodded approvingly, "We could use such skills if we ever do find ourselves in the wilds, especially with a wood elf on our side." He pondered for a moment before grinning, "Welcome aboard then! Make yourself at home in Robert's lovely establishment as we get ourselves together."

With his most recent recruitment success he turned to see Zakala not having such a great time with the other demon that was looking to join up and he audibly cleared his throat to chime in to save the situation. "Well, those area fine skills and all... and I'm sure my lieutenant would be more then happy to see someone of your skill be a part of the company. Isn't that right?" he spoke, adding a slight scowl as to remind her regarding her prejudices. The demoness took a deep breath and nodded, "Yes. Of course. The company would love to have you. Have a seat with the others." ( Oreo Cookie Oreo Cookie ) Her tone had no sincerity in it as she continued to make her feelings known wordlessly. Regardless, with that settled Hughin waved over the next potential recruit in line which appeared to be a man clad in a decent set of armor which already impressed Hughin as much as it did with Alareal and was keen on speaking with the man.

"Welcome then sir, I see you're well equipped for such work." he commented on Serge's ( Roda the Red Roda the Red ) armor before nodding, "And I may assume you have the experience and skills to back that up?" he then asked as a courtesy. There were upstarts clad in good equipment who eventually turn out to be complete rookies on the field and end up not only getting themselves killed but also their precious gear stolen from their corpses. Regardless, the way the man composed himself filled him with confidence in his choice. Zakala meanwhile turned away the peasant after it was revealed all he knew how to do was carpentry, not particularly useful considering there was no combat experience of any kind involved. But as she sat back and waited for more potential recruits a thought crossed her mind again, given how much time had passed already: 'Where is Arnas?'



A young man draped in a simple linen shirt and leather trousers inconspicuously stood next to a door to someone's flat before picking it open and entering. Breaking into the man's ground-floor domicile had been rather easy, the lock on his door was simple enough that even a child with enough skill could pick it open. However, Arnas wasn't here to rob the fool whose apartment he had just broken into... at least, not for what little valuables he might have. Instead, he was here to 'reclaim' an item he had lost in a game of cards he had foolishly gambled away. A bit of rummaging around through the small residency had him finding what he was searching for in a small footbox: a gold and brass circular pendant whose outer two circles were engraved and crafted in an intricate manner with a large orange gemstone in its center. He looked upon what was his only memento of the mother he never met with relief before a loud bang on the door signified the occupants angry arrival.

"Can't win at a game of cards so ye stoop te thievin'!?" the burly human blacksmith yelled in fury as he chased Arnas to the other end of the apartment and found themselves on opposite ends of a table. It was visible through the veins nearly popping out of his neck and head that he was fuming at the prospect of being robbed of what he had won. "Now now Jacob, I've only come for my necklace. That's all!" Arnas replied in jest before the man slammed his fists onto the table in retaliation. "It's MINE! I won it fairly!" the blacksmith shouted back.

"In a just world, yes that would be true. But this isn't a just world... this is Gwell." the young man replied with a smirk as he circled around the table again to avoid being in the grasp of a man who was twice his weight and width.

"Yer a fookin' dead man, ye hear me!?" the blacksmith yelled again before flipping over the table to remove the gap between the two of them. That would end up being Arnas' cue to leave as he jumped through the nearby open window and back out onto the streets. He had a bit of a headstart but he quickly heard the door crash open behind him as the blacksmith ran after him in full sprint. Avoiding the crowds was easier for Arnas as he was nimble and skinnier than the man he had just relieved of from his winnings, but now more trouble was brewing as the blacksmith shouted after him. "Thief! He took my earnings! Hardee Boys, get him!" the burly man shouted, gathering a few more pursuers to chase him down.

There was more things suitable to climb over and around in the market square as Arnas slid under a table to gather more distance between him and his chasers, prompting a few gasps of shock from onlookers as he continued to run through the area to escape. "Oh come on now!" he yelled aloud as he got his bearings at the center of the square and tried to figure out where he was going next, "It's not like a blacksmith like you can even read whats inscribed on it!"

"Come and say that to me face!" Jacob yelled again in a raw fury that intimidated even Arnas as he saw him and his cohorts rushing towards the market square.

"Um, no. I'll be heading off now!" Arnas replied with a nervous chuckle as he continued to give chase and ran to another street that led away from the market square. Thankfully, this part of town was like a maze and Arnas knew its alleys and corridors all too well as he dashed into one nearby passage and moved to confuse his pursuers on where to go.

Some time later...

After he was sure that he had lost his pursuers, Arnas felt safe to walk the streets again and back to where he would be safe best: The Golden Talon Tavern. Admittedly, he was rather dirty from climbing, dashing and running around the city but he could figure that out later. He just needed some drink now for his parched through. As he entered, he saw that the whole business of recruiting had been going well as a various amount of interesting characters had seemingly been brought aboard and the interviews were still going. Only Zakala seemed to be free as she waved over Arnas with a look of concern on her face.

"Hey Zee-" he began to say before he was interrupted.

"What did you do now?" she asked with a look of both annoyance and concern as she looked over how tired and dirty he looked.

"Oh come on, you really trust me so little?" he responded in jest, only to be met with a glare. "Ok fine, I... I stole back my necklace from Jacob-"

"Oh damn you Arnie!" she practically hissed at him, "We don't need trouble on our heads now, you know that right?" Arnas only sighed and nodded. "I know, it's just... I can't part with it. You know that."

"We'll talk about this later, for now get yourself settled in... and get to know the recruits as well since you'll be working with them." Zakala replied, her attitude returning to normalcy as she gave a soft smile to him. Arnas gave a nod and a half-hearted salute of his own as he walked over to Robert to quickly get some water to splash on his face before walking over to the recruits at the table. It was certainly an interesting group they've been getting so far and he was eager to get to know them. "Ah, you guys must be the uh... new recruits?" he asked aloud to everyone at the table, "Nice to meet you all, I'm Arnas. Hughin's my old man and I'll be working alongside you all." He then turned his attention specifically to the Aervis and motioned his head towards the Fateseeker: "I haven't seen many birdfolk, especially those who do mercenary work." he commented towards Da'Vost, "What brought you to this line of work?"
 

Dmaster

Sautekh Nemesor
The Fateseeker looked over Arnas inquisitively for a moment as the filthy man stepped into the tavern, not disgusted by his appearance rather confused about why he was allowing himself to be so dirty. Not one to concern himself with others' lifestyle choices a great deal, Da'Vost started to get back into his tome as the conversations went on around him. He knew that he was supposed to remain alert, but he didn't know how or when that his vision would come to pass, and would have to passively search for such details or await new visions. For now he was content to get to know who he would be working with.

"It is good to meet you as well, Arnas." Da'Vost replies as he lifts up his head from the pages of his book. "I am working with you all because the Aether has ordained it. There is a destiny of mine that I have foreseen with this company, and I must be there when it comes to pass." For as crazy as the words the Aervis was saying might be, he said it with such conviction that it was hard not to believe him.
 

Beann

The Bean
Roleplay Availability
Roleplay Type(s)
"Oh, you dont... speak... interesting."

Aelestra simply nodded at Zakala's observation. It was an understandable reaction, one that was common. Most people would get annoyed at her silent gestures but quickly relaxed after using paper and charcoal to communicate. Perhaps they took pity on her? No reason to as she didn't need it. She looked over to Hughin who had chimed in, tilting her head slightly at his statement. Aelestra personally didn't have trouble dealing with armored foes, especially ones that wore helmets. It was very easy to disorient them that way. Easier to disarm them too during their disoriented state. She wasn't sure about the idea of using weapons. A few monks used staves, some used magic, but Aelestra preferred to rely on her body alone. She looked down at her paper, pondering if she should express her disinterest in Hughin's idea but kept it to herself for now. Either way, it would seem her skills were sufficient enough to be recruited and even if it wasn't, she had a place to return to. Aelestra offered Zakala a small bow before looking around to see where the other recruits were grouping.

The Fateseeker and the woman with the black cat were talking to one another, another woman approached them shortly after, one with a peaceful aura. If she had eavesdropped correctly on introductions, this woman was also a monk. Most likely not trained in the same style but probably similar teachings. At least she was guaranteed one friend amongst this group. Hopefully. Approaching the recruits, Aelestra specifically turned her attention to the other monk, holding out the paper she had written in earlier to show Zakala. "Aelestra. Nomadic monk." Giving the woman a couple seconds to read it, she turned the paper back to herself and started to write more. "Good to see another among the ocean of plate armor."
"Ah, you guys must be the uh... new recruits?"

Her attention shifted over to a new face that approached the group of recruits. She raised an eyebrow slightly as he introduced himself as Hughin's son. Maybe there was a bit of a resemblance? Aelestra looked from Arnas, to Hughin, back to Arnas. She couldn't see it. He was also rather filthy and looked exhausted. What was he doing prior to his arrival? She wasn't sure. She also wasn't sure of the feeling she was experiencing as she stared blankly at him. However, she had an urge to express that feeling one way or another. Writing another note, she showed the message to the other monk, "going to market. Be back." With that, she walked towards the front of the tavern and exited.

Luckily for her, most city taverns were located close to the market, and this one was no different. It didn't take Aelestra long to venture into the bustling area filled with shops and stalls, merchants hawking people to sell their wares. She wasn't quite sure what she was looking for so she walked around a bit. After a while though, a florist stand caught her attention, quickly reeling her in as she stared at all the flowers that were displayed. "How may I help you, miss?" A rather friendly looking old man asked with his hands held behind his back. Aelestra remained silent as her eyes scanned the colorful flowers before pointing to one specifically. "Ah, this one? How many?" She held out her index finger, indicating that she only required one. After exchanging her money for the flower, she offered the florist a bow before heading back to the tavern. Once she arrived, she wasted no time walking up to Arnas and offering him a rose.

katrinamuwa katrinamuwa (interacted with Song) joshuadim joshuadim (rose)
 

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