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Fantasy Farewell to Kings: Temple of Hyxia

Sub Genres
Adventure

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
It was a misty spring evening, and the Count of Emerald, Myar Hearst was getting his small dinner party ready. The table was set, and seared lamb was on the menu. He was having Father Ainley from the church over. He was a frequent dinner guest. A pair of important figures were joining them tonight, but not important to the wider world, just to the count and his friend the priest.

The butler answered the door and found a tall, build man with a ghostly pale face. He possessed a sort of disturbing beauty that would’ve worked for a female’s body, but not him.
“Ah, y-you must be the dhampir. Please, enter.” The butler let him into the vestibule, where he’d wait until the count was ready to see both guests. They were still waiting on the good lady to arrive.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
She was late.

O gods, she was LATE.

Rhi shrieked in surprise, falling from the high seat of her stool and, after picking herself from the cold floor, rushed to clean up her palette and brushes, cursing herself for forgetting to wind the old second-hand clock sitting on her mantle. Throwing her smock into a pile of laundry, she scrubbed her face with cool well water at the basin sitting at the far end of her room, drying it quickly and applying some fragrant oil. She managed to rouge her lips with the little makeup she had and tried to tame her unruly mane of hair, finally pulling it into a somewhat neat bun, then sliding into the daffodil and marigold dress she had chosen the night before and, stuffing a small package into a traveling bag, ran out the door without much a thought. After handing out a good deal of money to a greedy cabman (she had glared at him for a good part of the journey, earning her a few of her coins back), she managed to make it to the gate of the manor, smoothing her dress and calming her breath before knocking at the door.
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The butler answered and greeted her with a smile.
“Fashionably late, Miss Toccash?” The butler jested. “Please come in, oh the rain.” He took her coat and welcomed her to a glass of water or something off the appetizer tray. Cheese and sliced meat, a classic staple of dinner parties.
She would notice a glum looking man sitting in the corner with a long brimmed hat sitting in his lap. He said nothing, and looked rather grim.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
She grinned, shaking droplets of water from her head, "I'm glad I'm not too late for fear that I missed the meeting itself!" Stepping into the vestibule, she eyed the tray of cheese and sliced meats, picking out a slice of cheese and quickly placing it in her mouth. Finding it to her satisfaction, she slid a few more onto a small plate and, noting the stranger sitting quietly in the corned, skipped to the man.
"How do you do sir? Are you here for the dinner party as well?"
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The man looked up at her. He had piercing red eyes that only dulled from his brooding temperament.
“I am here to answer a summons. I am not one for parties.” His voice lacked energy. It was world weary and dry.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
She frowned, but undeterred by his tired response, she shrugged "Well, there is always a first for everything, hm?"
She playfully tapped his shoulder, biting into a slice of cheese, "Eat some! You look far too thin."
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
What she didn’t know was that the man she offered cheese has been lactose intolerant for little over seventy years.
“No, thank you.” He put a hand up. “I’d rather not spoil my appetite for dinner.”
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The man looked at the meat. He decided to humor her. If at least to satisfy her morbid curiosity. He reached and took the toothpick from her. She’d feel coldness radiating off his being. He held it on the stick and spoke.
“Thank you. I am Lautrec, the Pale. The butler introduced you as Miss Toccash. Dost thou-er what do you do for work?” He ate the piece of salami and listened.

The rider was antisocial and antiquated. When he did speak, he’d occasionally speak old-common. Today’s people have come to see old-common as overtly posh or used ironically. It was a verbal tick to him.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
"Oh!" she smiled at his acceptance and, seeing a chair next to him, sat down next to him. She tugged her hoop earing, deep in thought. "Well, I'm an artist. At least, I hope I am," she bit down on another piece of cheese ",I want to be like the greats, have my name marked in history."
She let out a sigh, "But, it's taking a bit of work. I do a lot of odd jobs to make ends meet-say, what's with the old language? Are you some sort of rich person?"
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The rider turned his eyes from her. The salami tasted cheap. Mostly gristle.

“No” He answered flatly. “I am here out of need for money, after all. I’m just old.” For some reason he felt need to respond.
 
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alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
"Old?" she frowned, studying the man. His face was gaunt and pale, eyes cold and dim. She visibly gulped, "W-well, I wouldn't say you're old....just-er-heh," she chuckled nervously, unable to find the right words. "So! You've got a woman in your life? Children? What do you enjoy doing?"
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
His head didn’t turn. He rose from his seat. A second later, the door opened, and the butler entered.
“His honor, Count Myar Hearst is ready to meet you. Be also prepared to meet the good Father Gregory Ainley.”
Lautrec nodded and held his hat as he followed the butler to the dining room.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
Rhi got up quickly, hands clutching a small gift. She shuffled quickly behind Lautrec, trying to glance at the appearance of the room past the tall man obscuring her view. Once the small procession had filed in, she caught sight of Count Myar Hearst and Father Gregory Ainley.

"Good day to you sirs!" she announced cheerily, curtsying. She quickly approached the priest, placing the gift in his hands, "-some sweets I made. You said you enjoyed my cream cake last time, so I thought I'd make some more."
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The priest accepted her gift with his warm smile. “It’s so good to see you, Rhi. Bless your heart. Excuse me.” He said and turned towards Myar.
“Sir, do you mind if I do it now?”
The count nodded.
Gregory Ainley approached Lautrec with a blackjack produced from his pocket.
“Bow, wretch.” He ordered. Lautrec stood tall over the cleric.
“Evil spawn, bastard from hell! I said bow!” He beat Lautrec in the liver with his weapon. The dhampir groaned and collapsed in a pained gasp. He placed both hands on the ground. After a moment he lifted his head.
“Alright, now who wants salad?” He smiled brightly. Myar sighed and sat down at the table.
“Satisfied, you nasty prick? Who could stomach anything after that?”
“We shall not forget not forgive the actions of these blood suckers. I was against him setting foot in this city!” The priest sat down and glared daggers across the room.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
Rhi sat shocked, shifting in her seat and casting the occasional glance at Lautrec's pale face. How on earth was he a vampire? He had never been wretched at all, and Father Ainley had told her many times that vampires were cruel creatures who stopped at nothing to drain a poor soul of their life force. This man, though he was a bit grumpy and held a strange, unearthly presence about him, had done no such thing. She looked to the priest's angry face, confused at his sudden change in persona and then picked up her fork, biting her lip, "S-shall we start?"
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The priest looked kindly towards Rhi. “Please Rhi, do not pity the sorry creature. If only you knew the carnage associated with him. He knows the rules, they were taught to him at birth.
Lautrec rubbed his stomach and glanced over at Rhi.
“No, I don’t have children or a wife. I am a hunter. I specialize in the foul and elusive.” He drew a glare from the priest. Lautrec took a sip of soup and sat quietly.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
She stirred her soup, attempting to start conversation, but the buzz of confusion in her head was hard to ignore. "Do vampires really suck the blood out of people? Father Ainley told me that many drink goat blood when they can't get human blood" she whispered to Lautrec, guiltily glancing at the priest, evidently trying to hide the fact that she was speaking to him. She shivered, a bit afraid of his response, tugging at her long, goat ears.
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
Lautrec didn’t seem eager to continue talking. When she spoke of blood he dropped his spoon.
He looked down, the sharply up at Rhi. It was a look of cold hostility, like a diamondback.
“... and the charity next week will go on with plenty of aid from the locals...” the priest talked to Myar, who looked uninterested but listened.
A boy came in with two plates of lamb, setting down an entree in front of Rhi, and one for the priest. Another server appeared for the others.
Myar looked over. “The well done is for him, switch.” He snapped a finger. Lautrec was given his proper meal.
“He likes it tough, with those sharp teeth. I’ve known the hunter a while, and he has a thing against blood. That’s why I trust him in this hall. They say blood starvation doesn’t exist for half-breeds, but so many partake that it seems impossible. Sitting with us is an extraordinary war veteran and man. On the other side is a dear friend and fellow art lover. I’m still breathless in the presence of your works on my late wife Agatha.” Myar’s heart sung when he knew that she was coming.

“So, on to business?” The priest asked.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
"Oh-I'm sorry," she said sheepishly to Lautrec. She poked nervously at the meat in front of her, "I-is this...l-lamb?" Her face twisted into an expression of horror, visibly gagging at the sight.
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The priest looked up. “Yes. You had some at my house a few weeks ago. Ah yes, for New Years dinner. You didn’t mind then.”

Lautrec looked up. If he was still a dumb child he might ask if goats and sheep are the same. The same could be said about vampires and dhampir, though. Same beast, different fur. He found this woman irksome. She’d hate what he had planned for the future.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
Her eyes bulged at the priests, statement, feeling ill "I-oh Mitra..." she stammered. He told me it was dove, she thought to herself. She forced a smile to her face, ignoring the meat "I must ask what you wish to discuss with us my lord" she said to the count, bouncing her knee under the table.
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
Myar smiled. “Yes, I’m glad you asked. The church is funding a neat little competition for all the adventure and exploration types in Paladina. I am responsible for putting teams together. You will be looking for a lost temple called Hyxia. They say it was the first place of worship man had for the sun. Our history and archeological fields are slavering over a new find. You will be rewarded handsomely, of course.
 

alwaystheOptimist

Today's going to be just fantastic!
Rhi ears perked at the idea of a 'handsome reward', "How much?" She slid the lamb carefully of the plate when those in her company weren't looking, shoving the meat under the table, "-will me and Mr.Lautrec be going together?"
 

Jodyguru

I microwave styrofoam
The priest answered. “You’re going to keep an eye on that renegade. Fifteen hundred gold. Only one is allowed to claim the reward. We aren’t paying for tips and rumors on this matter. On top of that, I’m paying you extra to keep that animal in line.”

Lautrec folded his arms and looked at the count.
“I work best alone. She will slow me down.”
“I understand, Palerider. It’s the only way you’ll be allowed to take the payment. It’ll be a difficult journey. You’ll figure it out.”
Lautrec grunted. He was already tired in his joints.
 

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