|Harcos Maverick Morrison|
1d20 + 5 ⇒ (11) + 5 = 16 Know (Local)
In case knowledge of local laws and organization are of any help, Harcos after a quick look reorganizes the papers themselves on the table and also with a soft coal pencil draws a few lines on the plan to make the placing of chairs better, let them get more shadow and have more room for feet and a better look at the wedding. If possible also fix the seat order so that nobles are placed where they don't jump at each others throats, and the ranks/titles are not offended by improper placement. Should make the job of Master Janus easier.
Harcos looks at the plan then nods as he turns back to him. "I don't care about that, it is better if I stay a bit behind anyway." The man must feel at unease but maybe he already knows that not the aura/strange feelings that he gets from Harcos are important but the actual words he speaks. Those who don't could consider his words as the exact opposite, that he doesn't like to be pushed after others.
"So, you will be an entertainer then?" Looking at Erostil he ponders. "Then I wish you luck and hope you show a great performance." His words stab at Erostil as a curse, not sure why, as Harcos didn't use an offensive tone.
He nods at Master Janus then leaves to get Snow and ride to his position.
Stunned, Antha can only stare at Kesten, no, Master Kesten, Swordlord of Restov.
"That's... that's amazing, Kesten! I truly don't know what else to say," she said. Turning at the sound of an oncoming carriage, she asked, "I suppose this is your carriage, arriving at a perfectly timed moment to take us away to Happy Ever After like the bards' songs?"
The question, however, became moot as it continued past them further into the district.
"Well, maybe not. And a good thing for you, 'Master Garess, Swordlord of Restov'! I'm not some floozy damsel in distress you can just pick up out of nowhere and have fall all over you!" she scowled in mock severity.
Or am I?
Kesten laughs and waits for the carriage to pass out of ear-shot. ”I would never be caught dead in something like that. To much, I will settle for the clothes I have to wear and the estate I won. I need nothing else.” His face is filled with mocking surprise and horror, ”I would never presume to suggest that you are some floozy damsel in need of being swooned and spoiled!” Kesten does poof at his chest in mock indignation. ”Though I could swoon and spoil you if I were so inclined, just so you know” He winks as if challenging you. ”Look there are things happening in the city and things could become quickly unstable. I have a venture that I am planning down south if you are interested in a job.”
Harcos, it will require more then a Knowledge (Local) for something as complicated as it. Profession (Administration) would work if you know what you had available in Master Janus staff. You may be able to find better vantage points or routes based on the Knowledge (Local) check if you had time to dig up the information, but you wouldn't know who was feuding in the nobility, etc.
"Is that so?" she asked playfully, giving him a careful, evaluating eye. "If I'm not a floozy damsel, then what am I? Keep in mind every girl likes a good swooning and spoiling, and don't let anyone say otherwise!"
At his mention of a job, however, her mood shifts almost instantly.
"What are you thinking, Kesten? You've been very open with me this morning - a very pleasantly surprising one, thanks to your keen eye - but to be so vague all of a sudden? And what role could I possibly play in such grand plans?"
|Harcos Maverick Morrison|
1d20 + 1 ⇒ (16) + 1 = 17 Know (Nobility) untrained = result is max. 10 (to atleast fix some of the most known rivalry/sitting mistakes)
1d20 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5 Know (Religion) untrained = result is max. 10 (to know importance of present religious people, and how exactly the wedding will occur //although I think that Local can also cover that//)
1d20 + 3 ⇒ (18) + 3 = 21 Profession (Administration) untrained = no max specified, basically random chance to get a good idea from clues/on whim/from rumors/due to working at home on paperwork and machinery
I let Harcos then just scribble his ideas on a piece of paper and not directly on the plan, so Janus can decide what is good or bad himself. Use the earlier Local roll for what you think it would be useful.
”With you then it will not be as lonely a trip in the south. There are whispers of discontent between the Lord Regent and Restov, and if things get bad then Restov will need to protect herself. We can't fight a war on two fronts, if things get that desperate we can't worry about our southern border. There are rumors that a man known as the Stag Lord, some say a bandit, most say a monster, is calling an army of exiles, bandits, and other things to him. He talks of forging a kingdom that is a perversion of everything we hold dear in Restov. We can not allow him to become a threat to Restov while we have to worry about House Surtova.” He speaks quietly with his face close to your cheek to avoid anyone from overhearing him. ”I do not know what role you can play, but I know I will need help down south.”
I will go to the bards and begin the performance then. I hope you are less stressed soon. Whilst some of our guests have been discourteous by turning up so late, I am sure that you will do just fine.
Erostil will turn to Harcos at this point, dip his hat to the man and then head off to where he was directed to go.
”I... I have prayed for months for an answer, but she seems silent. I can not begin marriage and priesthood at the same time to much would be required of me. I am suppose to marry today!” She gets a bit frantic near the end of her speech. ”I can not serve to masters. I feel like it must be my father or my goddess... which duty do I chose?”
"You can be both wife and priestess as devotion to Sarenrae is not locked in scripture. You can keep the Dawnflower in your heart and interlace devotions to her with your every day actions," Arasmes began.
"Regardless, I cannot make that decision for you as that would just be replacing one father for another. You must take personal responsability for your choice and actions. Examine your decisions under the light of the Dawnflower. For example, does the merger of your families help only your father, or both families, or even more people? Would not getting married cause strife or crush the hope and joy of many? Are your fears merely of the unknown, or are they associated with something else? Are they justified?"
"Here," Arasmes said as he began to channel the restorative energies of his goddess into the woman, "allow the power of Sarenrae to flow into you, to calm you. Welcome it into you so that you can look upon your choice with a clear mind and calm heart."
Restorative touch domain power. In this case it's mainly for flavor purposes, but it can remove the shaken condition (a fear related condition) as well as other minor things (such as fatigue), so it might work to calm her enough to properly think on her options.
We haven't seen each other in years, and he confides in me so? What he plans is dangerous, and not just in the south: he is placing a great amount of trust in me, to tell me his plans. But this offer to do something is more than I could possibly have expected when I woke this morning.
She smiled. And it would be an opportunity to spend more time with him... and be more than a homeless floozy with no other prospects. I could never be a Swordlord, but I could - perhaps - accomplish enough to meet one on even terms.
"Very well, Kesten. I will go with you - if only to make sure no floozy damsels fall at your feet!" she laughed to dispel the tension such a serious conversation invoked.
”I doubt I will be any less frustrated after this fiasco. There is always something to be organized in the city.” Master Janus grumbles, and takes the parchment handed to his by Harcos, ”Not bad. With some proper training you could have a future in Administration.” He sets the parchment on his desk without a second glance as he sees the pair of you out of his office and into the chaos beyond again. You quickly make your way through the roving attendants to pass through the corridors of the Restovic City Hall. You part ways to find your own spots in the procession.
Only a handful of the 'lesser' nobles have arrived to their place in the procession yet. None of them seem keen to investigate your presence after your arrival. There appears to be another like you, shunned and constantly putting off an disturbing aura, he is grooming his horse silently. He is wearing an Aldori Dueling blade at his hip and his stance are like those of a man prepared to run someone through any moment. It appears that he uses something to darken and highlight his imperfection as his eyes, seemingly dead of emotions, are darkened by a thin line of make-up and they come off the corner of his eyes like black tears rolling down his face. The lips are similarly darkened and a perpetual frown as been drawn from the corners.
You make your way to the first of the horse-drawn stages and join the bards already in place. There are several of them, and one of them appears to be speaking with each one of them in turn. He is also playing a short melody on his flute to each of them. The piece is a peculiar selection known as the “Rostland Defiance” created to immortalize the last stand of the Swordlords against Choral the Conqueror a couple centuries ago. You have played the piece a few times since you arrived in Restov because it was popular in the city but with so many foreign guests it seemed strange, because the northern lords hated it with a passion since House Surtova bent the knee and handed Issia over to Choral without a fight.
There is one oddity on the stage. A large man who easily lugged a cello around with him; when the master bard spoke to him he appeared to be of simple intelligence speaking in broken common, but he played his instrument well after hearing the bard play it once. He was also friendly waving excitedly to each new bard that arrived.
Woman gives a simple nod, ”You will delivery a gift from the Queen to her brother?” She asks in the same gruff tone. ”She sent one of her servants out to secure some of the wild radishes that grow south in the Greenbelt, he can sample them before the ceremony so he does not get peckish and agitated. The King has acquired a taste for them. Obviously no lesser servant can present a gift from the Queen to the King. Her brother insisted on a man of righteousness to be at her side, who better to present the gift so he can judge you for himself.”
Bingo laughs, ”To many. Nine to be exact, though only seven of them still live here with me. Five of them help about the inn while one wishes to help but is a small tyke, and the last one can't even walk yet.” Bingo flashes a frown momentarily when mention the two that do not live with him at the inn, but he quickly beams a proud smile though when thinking about the rest of his family. ”We know away on the roofs which makes watching events like this a breeze for us. We don't share this with just anyone mind you.”
She begins to speak more calmly, ”It is a double-edged sword. It will bring hope to a lot of people and unite my father with allies in the south, but it could also bring the wrath of the Lord Regent to this lovely city. I do fear the unknown, I fear marrying a man twice my age who I have never met for political reasons. I have always believed that I would marry for love when I was older, or atleast be married to my duties as a priestess of Sarenrae. If I marry Lord Sellemius, then perhaps I can use my influence to persuade him away from folly actions, but then I would be abandoning my father to the Lord Regent's wrath. I... don't know what to do!” She breaks the calm again as she begins to sob.
”Superb!” He flashes a smile and claps his hands, ”The south does not look so bleak anymore. We should hurry though. I do plan on spoiling you, as your first payment for agreeing to help, of course but my man will need time to get you a dress for the ceremony.” He picks up his pace again passing the largest estate where a army of servants are unloading carriages and wagons including the one that passed by earlier. ”This is the Lord Mayor's estate. The master who trained me, and those servants must belong to the Lord Regent and his sister who will be guests at the estate.” Kesten leads you further down the road until you have passed about three other modest estates and finally he turns into the fourth one which is rivaled only by the Lord Mayor's estate.
"Kesten...! This is almost overwhelming! How about we just get through this wedding first? I hardly expected to end up being involved in it!"
Walking along with Kesten past the Lord Mayor's estate and the others until turning in at the fourth, "And this is yours, I imagine? Very impressive, Kesten, though not as much as yourself," she states, genuinely demure.
|Harcos Maverick Morrison|
Harcos feels strange to have met someone who gives him a similar sensation to what he is most likely to make others experience. He doesn't plan to disturb the man, but if people around shun and avoid that noble, then Harcos will go near him to the free spot with Snow.
He knows how troubling it can be if people avoid one, so he will be a silent companion, unless the man himself wants to start a conversation. Harcos will nod at him if the man notices the young Morrison, and while the group waits for their time to get to the wedding Harcos takes out his newspaper and reads the other articles he skimmed over earlier.
Arasmes stiffens slightly upon realizing the young lady's identity. "Lady Orlovsky..." he began, at a loss for words for a moment. "My lady... I now understand your dilemma. Knowing the function of the noble houses, it is unlikely that any noble has the luxury to marry for love. That being said, it is entirely possible to love the one you have married, if given the time."
Arasmes sighs, "I am not well versed in the convoluted mechanisms of politics, and have only fallen afoul of them myself, so I cannot properly evaluate any benefit or fault with this wedding. Your prospective husband and other Swordlords already have the eye and ire of the Lord Regent and so this alliance may serve to delay any action against them. Your father, on the other hand, has done well to stay out of the political quagmire, so this action has him entering the fray. Could not the mere act of agreeing to the marriage, whether it happens or not, also draw the Lord Regent's wrath? With the alliance, I don't see how the Lord Regent could act against your father without bringing trouble for himself from the other houses or the Swordlords."
"It seems, to these inexperienced eyes, that, in the short term at least, this alliance may keep the peace in Brevoy."
"I have no problem with that. I had been led to believe that I was to be the only bodyguard, but if you remain at her side then it is no problem. If you would direct me, I would be happy to." Teyran wondered if there was a chance that his services would be necessary or if he was there as a precaution. He hoped that it was the latter.
Kesten laughs, "I will take the complement. Hans! Hans!" Kesten shouts as they approach the door. A man appears at the door though you may have imagined something different this man is small, bulky and wrinkled from age, if he had a beard you would imagine him to be dwarven. ”Yes, sir? Will the lady be requiring more suitable attire for the ceremony today? I will get on that right away.” He speaks in a completely dispassionate tone and asked the questions as if an unspoken answer was given. ”Excellent work as usual, Hans!” Kesten says to the man as he guides you passed into the manor. It is richly decorated but not abundantly so though it appears that Kesten has an eye for military art-work with several pieces that depict battles and duels. ”Welcome to my humble home, Lady Antha.” He gives a bow and gestures his other hand out to the house beyond.
The man pulls himself onto his mount and waits silently with a foreboding air of promised violence about him. He chuckles to himself as he waits and mutters to himself, ”How exciting.” It is within that moment that he looks around again and notices the young Harcos near him, ”I have never seen so much splendid and pomp in one place. I bet there will be riches uncounted here.”
The woman freezes when you say her name, and looks around like a startled deer, but finally she bows her head silently as you speak. ”A foolish dream then is marrying for love. I will perform my duties to my house and I will marry the Lord Mayor of Restov.” She seems to grow some strength as she speaks and sits up straighter like a proper noble, ”If I can bring the Dawnflower's peace to the region in one swoop with this marriage then I will. You will perform the ceremony for me?”
The woman frowns and grumbles, ”The Queen's brother does not think I am capable of defending her, because I am a woman.” Her fist clench and unclench in a moment of anger before she regains control of her anger, ”I could not let harm come to the Queen, ever. The servant should arrive shortly and when he does just take the moon radishes to the King and offer them with sisterly love from the Queen.”
”Bingo Guessford, pleased to make your acquaintance, Miss Grendolynn. I thought you may take a liking to being out of the crowd. I want to apologize a head of time if any of my kids cause trouble, they are an inquisitive bunch. How about some stew. We usually eat the left overs from last night while preparing the new stew for tonight. Lunch is on the house.” He says, he calls back to the kitchen for a bowl of stew and break of bread, his wife promptly appears with it. She is a plump-sort with rosey cheeks and a cheery smile. She kisses him on the cheek as she hands it over and returns to the kitchen, you can make out her call upstairs and the thundering sound of their children descending into the kitchen for food. He passes the bowl and bread to you with a smile.
|Harcos Maverick Morrison|
Harcos nods. "Well this is something like an important wedding between nobles in something like a capital city so no surprise. Although I would rather prepare for the coming Science Fair, there is no efficiency in this whole event, and too much wasted gold and other resources. Too much politics for my tastes, if I were the spouse I would do a small ceremony then flee the mess with the bride."
He then ponders. "I wonder if someone would gather up all the food and drinks from the after party, would selling it make him rich?"
"Very well," Teyran said, nodding. "And that is nonsense. If we both put on a helmet, no one could tell one from the other. I find that women are just as competent as men, especially at causing trouble," His good natured smile should have made it clear that the last part was a joke.
Wide-eyed, Antha stared around the interior of Kesten's manor. She was only passingly aware of the head butler, Hans, setting about to procure a dress for her.
"Humble home, Kesten? Oh, you're too much!" she laughed. "What now? Do I get a tour? Or am I for the seamstress, to be properly fitted for a dress suitable for accompanying Restov's newest Swordlord? If the latter, I expect you to make sure it's second only to the bride's!" she teased, laughter lighting her eyes.
"Thank you Mr. Guessford." She digs into the stew with a wild hunger, perhaps brought on by the whiskey but more likely worked up over a long morning of lifting bales of furs and talking to potential customers. By the time she is done the bowl is as clean as it's going to get without washing it. "So when are we leaving for the ceremony?" Grendolynn asks Bingo.
”A foolish dream then is marrying for love. I will perform my duties to my house and I will marry the Lord Mayor of Restov.” She seems to grow some strength as she speaks and sits up straighter like a proper noble, ”If I can bring the Dawnflower's peace to the region in one swoop with this marriage then I will. You will perform the ceremony for me?”
"You can find love in unexpected places, such as to your husband in an arranged marriage," Arasmes begins. "Yes, you can show your devotion to Sarenrae by bringing her light to the region. I believe you have experienced her light just now. The clarity of mind brings clarity of purpose."
"As to your ceremony, I have not been informed but I expect it is to be performed by the high priest of this church. I am merely a journeyman cleric of the Dawnflower who is here to assist the church with the more than usual number of visitors that are here to witness your pending nuptials. I am certainly not worthy of officiating your noble wedding."
Erostil will smile and wave back at the simpler man with the cello, he seemed to be a decent man, if simple. Playing the simple tune that the master wanted to teach them was but a moment of concentration and perhaps two attempts at it before it stuck and he knew he would be able to remember it when the time came for it to be needed.
”It is beyond my imagination.” The man says with a sense of excitement to his words... and hunger. ”The name is Dovan, and you seem to have a similar condition to my own. Keep an eye out on the festivities, something interesting is bound to happen.” It suddenly occurs to you what it must be like for someone talking to you. The way he stood, the face, and the voice almost suggested he was promising that something frightening would be happening during the wedding. He falls silent while he waits on you to reply.
The woman barely cracked a smile at your jest, but it was only momentary, she obviously has a lot of stress on her shoulders that is keeping her from enjoying the humor of it. ”Sabina Merrin, by the way. We did not get a chance to introduce ourselves on the road. I don't find your presence quite an assault on my being anymore. No offense.”
”Hans will handle the dress. He has an unnatural ability to size someone up with perfect precision and I haven't needed to be measured once since he came into my employment. I would give you a proper tour but I must begin my own arrangements for the ceremony. If you want to wander then feel free and I am positive Hans will find you anywhere in the manor when he returns... one of his other unnatural skills. Kesten gives a bow, and excuses himself. You notice now that Hans vanished while Kesten was talking.
”After the children have eaten their proper lunch then we will head out. You will meet some of the others from the halfling community, and I would suggest that you judge them by their looks in this case and keep a tight hold on your coin purse or better yet, leave anything easy to steal that you want to keep here. Bunch of no good pickpockets they are, but they can't help themselves it seems.” Bingo goes about cleaning up the bar and will respond to you before he eventually goes into the kitchen to help get his children together as well as make sure the stew is coming along for the evening.
”No, you misunderstand me. I wasn't asking if you knew who would do it, I was asking you to perform it for me. If it wasn't for your help showing me the Dawnflower's purpose then there wouldn't even be a ceremony. Will you officiate it for me?” She clutches your hand in both of her hands. You can still feel the nervousness in her as they shake slightly, but she seems ready to take the leap of faith. ”What is your name?”
The seemingly gentle giant waves back with excitement but quiets down during your rehearsal with the Master Bard, but after he speaks up. ”Auchs is excited. Auchs loves his cello. Auchs use to play for mother, and now Auchs plays for Dovan lots though Auchs misses playing for Akiros since he vanished. Name is Auchs, what is your name?”
"I'll be ready to go at any time, just come get me here." She replies to him before going to her room. She leaves some of her things there, and then goes back down to the common room to wait for Bingo.
Leaving my bedroll, rope, bear trap, and flint and steel in the room. Also leaving 3 spears and my shield and whatever I have left of my 9 silver after my drinks.
|Harcos Maverick Morrison|
"And what could that be? Some secret lover suddenly appears to come to the rescue of the damsel in distress?" Harcos smiles, or something. "There will be extra guards, mages, and sharpshooters on the roofs for the event as protection I imagine. Although something that would stir up the nation and wake the commoners up from slumber may be a good thing, advancement needs strife, and technology improves the best during conflicts and rivalry."
Harcos folds the newspaper again. "The Morrison Company would greatly benefit from wars or riots, those increase demand for food and firearms, and fresh news. It would however weaken the nation on the bigger scale, and resources like manpower would be wasted. It is hard to plan a proper balance of supply and demand." He offers the newspaper to the man, now that Harcos has read it, it would be a waste to just throw it away. It was the freshest one after all.
He thinks for a moment then nods. "Right, manners. Sorry I am not exactly one for the social events, I am Harcos Maverick Morrison, and you are mister Dovan... ?" Harcos didn't recall anyone by the name of Dovan, but maybe a family name would help.
Teyran couldn't help himself, he laughed at that, "If I had a silver for everytime I've been told that, I'd be a poor man indeed. I am Teyran Rilskel, paladin of Sarenrae. Well, that's what I used to be, now I'm just an old man with more years than sense." Funny enough, he didn't look that old. True, his hair was white, but that could have easily been a mark of his unusual ancestry. He appeared to be hovering right around middle age.
Erostil smiles, the simple folk were often so enjoyable to speak to. The lack of ulterior motive and the like often meant that they said what they meant, and thus you knew where they stood on any issue that they could comphrehend.
Erostil is excited too. The city is really pretty. Who are Dovan and Akiros?
"Ahh, I see. Has the officiant not already been chosen then? The high priest here may have already been asked to perform the ceremony by the Lord Mayor. I suppose it can be changed, if that is your wish," Arasmes says before looking in her eyes and continuing softly, "My presence as officiant at your ceremony may not endear you to the Brevic nobility. In fact, I expect you'll recind your request once you become aware. My name is Aresmes... Aresmes Vors," he concludes, lowering his eyes.
I hope, at least, her disgust at me will not colour her decision on the marriage, Aresmes thought as he steeled himself against her reaction.
Tried to lay down because of an ear ache so my posting is late tonight.
It wasn't long time before there was a light tapping at the door. You opened it expecting to see Bingo, but instead there was a halfling child who took one look up at you then squeaked and darted for the stairs in a hurry. A moment later Bingo appeared, ”Sorry, I didn't think about it. We are ready to go now.” He guided you towards the whispering pack of children downstairs, it was obvious the one who had come to your door was telling the others. He was stomping around with his hands in the air saying something in halfling which caused all the children to glance nervously at you, but one of them a young girl with crystal blue eyes just stared a moment then said something to the boy causing all of them to laugh at him. He began to pout and walked with his arms crossed infront of him the reminder of the trip.
Bingo and his wife expertly kept the children from wandering off during the back-alley trip through a dozen different alleys. Sometimes you had to cross through a crowded street which was harder for you then the line of halfings, but eventually he stopped to look around infront of a wooden gate. Satisfied that no one was looking he lifted it slightly and waddled forward carrying it to the side before waving everyone into the alley. If you attempt to help he waves you off, and then puts the gate back in place. Some collapsed buildings lead to a roof where someone has set up a series of catwalks towards the center square from roof to roof over varies alleyways. You can see a mix of gnomes and halflings traveling around the roofs, and the odd mix of other races that got invited to view from their perches.
Bingo finds a spot near one of the sides of the square, and you can see a multitude of people gathered below already. You notice the crystal-eyed young girl staring intently at you from amongst her siblings.
The man shivers as if from excitement, ”It wouldn't be any fun if it wasn't for the expectation of heightened security. Trust me when I tell you this nation is rotting at the core and strife will come for it. Death stalks these lands as sure as Ustalav.” The man says with a gleeful glint in his eyes as he looks over the procession before his eyes. ”Dovan of Nisroch. Foreigner, but my wealthy patron has brought me here.” There is a tone in his voice that promised violence if you followed that up. Before you have time to respond you notice a suddenly quietness settle over the procession as moments before you could hear the whispered conversation from ahead of you and behind, the bards practicing their tunes, and the low roar of the large mass of people gathered within the city. Now it was quiet for a moment longer then a bards on the float ahead of you began to play in unison and the float began to move slowly before you.
”Shall we then? It appears the first act has begun.” The man named Dovan asked as he urged his horse forwards with the flow of the procession.
“An old man and a woman. The Queen can pick her misfits it would appear. I must return to her side now. We will have to leave for the ceremony soon so I urge you to intercept the servant at hurry the moon radishes to his Majesty.” Sabina makes her suggestion before slipping back into the Queen's room. With the task at hand and the knowledge that it wouldn't hurt to expedite it the delivery, you find your way downstairs to the entrance of the manor and it only takes a few minutes before you can spot the man coming up the street with a guard as escort. Within a few minutes you have the moon radishes in hand with a simple question to a servant you can locate which part of the manor is hosting the 'King' and you are on the way.
A few of his personal attendants attempt to give you grief, but a simple explanation that the radishes were from the 'Queen' sent them away. It seems gifts for the 'King' from his sister were common and woe be to the man that held up one of the gifts. You are admitted with the gift, though you are asked to remove your weapon and they are insistent. ”No weapons in the presence of the King.” was the command. Noleski Surtova is a contrast to his sister; where she has perfectly alabaster skin, his skin is tanned by the sun; where her hair is full and black, his hair is thinning salt and peppered; where her eyes are sky blue, his eyes are the color of steel. He is not the politician that you expected to find, but a man built like a warrior. His movements are the well-trained movements of a man prepared to have to defend himself at any moment from any direction and the large sword strapped to his back suggests that he does not feel safe even here.
”What is your business, man?”
”City is pretty, much better then dingy fort that Auchs is use too. Auchs not really like the fort, but Dovan says Auchs is safe there. Dovan is Auchs' protector, he saved Auchs, so Auchs owes him a debt. Akiros was Auchs' new friend, but he said Dovan was a bad apple, but then he leave Auchs. Dovan never leave Auchs, so who is really Auchs' friend?” The big fellow calling himself Auchs says. He hugs the cello gently but close to him, ”Auchs miss playing cello. Auchs use to play until the mean people came and Dovan came to save me. Auchs come to city to play for Dovan during wedding. Dovan told Auchs to play his best so that Auchs would be near. The large man puffs his chest out with pride as if he accomplished the impossible, but before you can ask anymore of the gentle giant the Master Bard's preparations are interrupted by the guards begin to march ahead. He hurries into position which causes everyone else to come to the ready and a moment later with his flute in place the Master gives the signal to begin playing just as the platform below is lurched to life by the team of horses pulling it.
You can make a perform check for attempting an exceptional performance or you can take 10 like everyone else on the platform except Auchs and the Master Bard.
Master Bard: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24
Auchs: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (2) + 9 = 11
You give yourself a small tour, though without proper guidance you can only guess, but you find a few things of interest from what appears to be a trophy room of blades and firearms which appear to be well-maintained to a room of prized animals which appears to have begun to collect dust when a cloud of it causes you to cough when you disturb the room. You find a pair of garden with a multitude of different flowers and plants including a small patch of moon radishes from the 'Stolen Lands' which have become a prize in Restov for their taste and prestige. You realize that an estate this large requires a considerable number of servants but you have not seen any of them...
You decide to track down a few and turn to find Hans standing quietly behind you. It is startling given his suddenly appearance, silence, and emotionless face. ”I hope that you have enjoyed your wanderings. I have returned with your dress. We do not have any ladies-in-waiting to help you with the dress though as the Master gave them the day off for the celebration. Follow me.” He says in a creepy and completely monotone voice.
”I apologize, but I must confess as it appears that you expect me to know something about you. It is a pleasure to meet you through, Arasmes Vors, you are truly blessed by the Dawnflower. I... do not know. I suppose my husband-to-be or father would have chosen someone to officiate. You are, however, responsible for my peace and therefore I will make sure the High Priest is aware of my choice.” She rises with dignity and purpose that she did not come to the temple with. She waits quietly for a moment before you realize that she expects you to show her to the High Priest of this Sarenrae temple. She just nods when your attention returns to her and you guide her to his office. She strides in without knocking and leaves you waiting in the antechamber as the door closes behind her. This was not the same timid girl from a moments ago, this was the daughter of one of the Issian Lords.
You hear a handful of words, most of them 'but milady', before she returns. ”It is done. If you have things to gather, now would be the time. You will escort me back to my father so that I can get prepared.”
This place sure is... peculiar, thought Antha to herself as she wandered through empty chambers and deserted gardens.
Where is e-"Eek! Oh, Hans, I'm sorry, but you startled me terribly there. The dress is ready? How does it look?" she babbled in rapidly-calming jitters. More primly, "I can dress myself, thank you. Lead on, then, Mister Hans."
Teyran knelt before the king, and then motioned toward the radishes, and said, "My lord, I bring a gift of moon radishes from your sister. She said that you have acquired a taste for them, and I hope that they are to your satisfaction," He remained kneeling until he was told otherwise. He didn't like being without his sword, the weapon had great sentimental value to him. Aside from that, as a reawakened paladin, without his sword felt similar to being without his arm.
Well... this should be interesting at least, Arasmes thought with a small smile as he moved to gather the appropriate ceremonial garb and liturgical documents.
"I must confess, I may not be as practiced at this ceremony as others, but I will give you my best," Arasmes said upon returning to the Lady Orlovsky with his gear. "Let's get you home, milady. We both have much to prepare."
Listening intently to the names that are mentioned, Erostil will keep them in mind. Information is always useful, just the use must be found for it.
Perform check 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (16) + 6 = 22
Playing well, he keeps an eye out for the world around him.
”It is far above your class, milady. This way then.” Hans without a hint of sarcasm or emotion of any type. He leads you back through the garden then back into the house. Upstairs, three doors to the right, is a large room that has a more feminine feel. The dress has been laid out on the bed by Hans, and it is beautiful. You notice there are other items in the room for a female occupant. ”You can ready yourself in this guestroom. I must see to Master Kesten now.” Hans backs from the room and closes the door behind him without another word.
Noleski grabs a radish from the basket and gestures towards the table. He pulls out a cloth to clean the radish before biting into it. ”My sister showers me with gifts. I wonder what she wants this time. You are the Paladin that they found to protect her then?” He asks you while he takes another bite from the radish. He waits for you to place the remaining radishes on the table to respond.
You escort the Lady Orlovsky to her estate but within moments of arriving you are set upon by guards. They use words like scoundrel, fiend, and other negative terms while attempt to restrain you. All the while the Lady Orlovsky is yelling for them to stop, but they pay her no heed. Another man appears after a few moments of commotion, and he stares with at you with a cold-gaze that suggested he will hang for your crimes. Alexis immediately turns away and turns to him, ”Father, make them unhand my priest.” The man turns away from you to look at her, and his gaze does not change in the slightest when looking at his daughter. ”Your priest?
”I...” You think for a moment that the timid girl from before was going to reappear, but a moment later she nods to him. ”He is a priest of Sarenrae and he will be officiating the wedding.”
He glances back to you, and waves the guards away. You have a moment to straighten your clothing before he turns on his heels and leaves without another word with his daughter following at his heels.
Your performance goes off well, but you can see the fading excitement in Auchs as tries to play to tune with the other. It becomes painful obvious that he is not use to playing with other people and it was effecting it. You can see panic beginning to take him, and you can see his grip tightens on the fingerbow threatening to snap it in two. There was tears in the gentle giant's eyes as he tries to keep up with the others.
While being led through the manor by the automatonic Hans, Antha can't help but ponder the bizarre manservant, Hans seems... odd. Did he come as part of the estate to go along with title Kesten won? I admit I don't know him very well, but what I've seen of him today doesn't fit with him voluntarily taking on such a man.
After Hans closes the door, she takes a look around.
"And what other women have been staying here? The former Lady? A paramour? Either way, Kesten'll pay for this!" she chuckles in mischievous humor, before taking in the dress.
Maybe Hans wasn't being quite as saucy as I thought; I've never seen such a fancy, beautiful gown this close before!
Taking her time to make sure she doesn't damage the dress at all, Antha changes clothes into the new dress. Finishing, she checks herself in the mirror and takes advantage of any powder or makeup to touch herself up before opening the door to the hall to see what came next.
Well that was about as awkward as I was expecting. And I expect more to come. Ahh, my goddess, is this a trial you set before me, or a path to redemption?
Arasmes sighs and shrugs at the guards apologetically before following the Lady Orlovsky and her father inside. The Lady has collected herself and is showing her inner strength. If nothing else shines from this endeavor, at least her light and faith will persist.
Wishing that he could do more to help the gentle giant, Erostil will change his tune a little and make it a slightly more calming one directed at Auchs. The man seemed a decent sort, if a little unpractised, and so Erostil tries to do what he can to help.
|Harcos Maverick Morrison|
Sorry about delay, had a mild food poisoning
He scribbles stuff into the newspaper as the group begins to move, and Harcos looks for someone, anyone he knows.
Perception: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (13) + 7 = 20
He plans to hand the newspaper over if he finds anyone, he hopes it may be Janus he spots.
In the newspaper he wrote "The wedding may be targeted, I suggest to use doubles until the oath has to be said, disguising the fake bride should be easier than the spouse but replace both if possible. If nothing happens until the vows should be said then the real ones should come out."
Harcos this way still acts upon his feelings but the precaution wouldn't really cause any problems if there will be no attack or anything, he can't accuse Dovan of anything, especially as he also often gets into trouble, but this plan would not endanger the wedding or cause conflict by accusing nobles.
You open the door to find a waiting Kesten about to knock. He is suitably dressed in a rich purple velvet that was almost black with gold trimming and he had changed the blade that hung at his hip; the other one had looked worn and used through well-maintained, but this one looked like it was a much high-quality. Kesten stared at you for a moment as he forgot to talk then flourished a bow and a grin, ”I apologize for the wait. I hope you found sufficient distractions while I was indisposed. I told you that Hans would do an excellent job. Our carriage awaits, Lady Antha.” He offer his arm to escort you.
The young halfling approaches and stares up at you for a moment, ”Rose.” She curtsies to you, ”Pleased to meet you. I have never met one of you before. Seen a orc once, well half-orc, but he was scary. Tried to push daddy around, but big brother got the last laugh. He was a bad man, but you are not bad. I can tell... I sense bad people.”
You pass through the door into the manor and you see Lady Orlovsky getting guided off by servants to prepare for the wedding but her father fixes you with the same stare as he gave you outside. He pointed at you then silently motioned you towards him. You take note that he is not a large man, and doesn't appear to carry a weapon on himself, being more of a politician then a warrior. ”You will not mess up the wedding.” He says though you wonder further it was a question or a statement.
”My daughter often brings home strays, and I tire of having to put them down. It will not be my problem much longer, but know if you do somehow manage to interfere in the wedding that you will not see another morning.” The cold stare and tone of his voice suggested that he was not to be trifled with.
With your help Auchs manages to finish the piece without destroying his cello, but he does appear to be happy with his performance as the float comes to a stop amongst the crowd Auchs begins to fiddle with the cello. He continues to frown as he focuses on the task. With a few waves to the cheering crowd the Master Bard comes over to you, ”You did excellent. Not as great as myself, but good. I want you to join me during the ceremony where we will play the brides approach.”
In the middle of the procession it was not an easy task to find someone to hand the warning off too. The only options that you had available to you without interfering with the flow of the procession was one of the street guards that you pass. The hand off was awkward and for a moment you don't know if he understood but as you continue onward you look back to him staring at the newspaper before he bolts off down the road. You glanced back at Dovan who appears to not have noticed your maneuver though he does have the same gleeful leer fixed on his face as eyes the upcoming central square that you are rapidly approaching.
Noleski took another bite and turned towards you with a look. You have recognized the calculating stare over the years; the stare of a trained warrior sizing up an opponent. ”I don't like the armor, but there isn't time to have it replaced. You... excuse me.” He is interrupted for a moment as he places his fist to his chest and holds it there a moment, then gives a cough. ”The radishes don't appear to be agreeing with me. As I was saying, you will do.” He tosses the nearly finished radish on the table and walks over to the window as he stares out over the city. ”This is a city of snakes and traitors, and only the righteous can be trusted. You will lay down your life for my sister today if you must.” He sways in place slightly, and then turns back to you. ”Tell my sister that her gift was well-received and if she wishes to come discuss whatever it is that she wants from me after the ceremony then I will received her.”
Antha arched and eyebrow at the waiting Kesten. Seeing his reation, she twirls and poses playfully, teasing the tongue-stricken Swordlord.
"Sufficent distractions? I suppose you mean being escorted by the redoubtable Hans to some other lady's room? Is there something I should know, Kesten?" she asked in mocking severity, her own grin not at all disguised.
"Hmph. Your reaction gives it all away, Kesten," she said, before continuing dismissively, "It was doubtless the former residents'. So, carriage?"
With that, she quite decidedly takes his arm to be led out.
Teyran looked down at himself and nodded, "Indeed, I would have preferred something heavier, but I took with me what I had at the time." The all but spoken implication was that a heavier suit of armor would have been adorned in exactly the same way. He knelt again, "I will do as you ask," He added. Presuming he was dismissed, Teyran then made his way back to the Queen to relay the message to Sabina. If she was the queen's attendant, as she said, then she would relay the message, unless she chose to let him tell it himself.
You honour a poor flautist with such an honour, and I would proudly accept. Where will you need me to be and when?
Arasmes sighs looking at the Lord Orlovsky. "My lord, my intent when I came to this city was to merely be a spectator in this wedding. Through some twist of fate or by the mysterious hand of the Dawnflower, your daughter came to me," he began. "My past indiscretions notwithstanding, my heritage is off the table. I am a humble follower of the Dawnflower and it is as such that I will offciate this marriage. In truth, I am in favor of the alliance of your house with the Swordlords. I hope it buys time, if not peace."
There maybe bits and pieces of rp that could still be covered before the main event but I am going to skip to the wedding (because there can always be bits and pieces of rp remaining to be played out).
The streets leading to the center of Restov, where the ceremony had been planned for all the city to see, were packed with bodies of people. A sizable statue of the famous (or infamous) Sirian Aldori, the Sword Baron, dominates part of the scenery in the square. The procession of nobles, bards, guests, sword scions and the wedding party begins to arrive upon horses, and platforms pulled by horses. There were a couple notable guests amongst the procession; Noleski Surtova (Lord Regent or King), his sister Natala Surtova, the Lord Poul Orlovsky, and the entire Sword Council.
Noleski Surtova looks every part of a Warrior-King standing near the statue of the Sword Baron towering above the others gathered there. He seemed a bit green in the face as he sways slightly. Natala Surtova looks a radiant beauty amongst the others with her perfect alabaster skin, full and beautiful black hair, and crystal blue eyes. Lord Orlovsky looks skeletal in comparison; with a gaunt faced that should be full of emotions for his daughter except he just stared at the King with dead-eyes. Alexis Orlovsky was a lovely young woman, but seemed small and timid at times. Ioseph Sellemius was every bit the Swordlord; almost a perfect match to the statue of Sirian Aldori towering above him.
Antha Scapegrace sat slightly behind where Kesten Garess stood on the platform with the other Swordlords. Each of them were as regal as the next, but they looked a motley bunch as they came from a multitude of ages and backgrounds with the youngest standing couldn't be more then mid-twenty (Kesten Garess). Teyran Rilskel stood off to the right of Natala and left of the Noleski though just behind them, while Sabina Merrin stood in the same spot to the left of the Queen; she kept her gaze firmly focused on the Natala to watch anyone that approaches her. Grendolynn was a strange site amongst the rooftops. A towering hobgoblin amongst the wee folks (halflings, gnomes, etc) with a small halfling girl on her shoulders.
Erostil Vramir sat in a place of honor with the other bards that have played impressively during the procession;each queued up to play a number of sweet songs during the ceremony. Arasmes Vors stood with his back to the statue of Sirian Aldori facing the bride and groom as the representative of the Church of Sarenrae asked to officiate the wedding. Harcos Maverick Morrison sat upon his horse with the lesser nobles with a large amount of trepidation after the ride next to the creepy foreign dignitary.
The crowd begins to quiet down as it appears the ceremony is ready to be under way, and that is when things fall apart. A rather creepy man begins to take the steps towards the wedding party, and he is clapping with a toothy smile on his face. He has used something to darken and highlight his eyes, seemingly dead of emotions, and a thin black line is traced off the corners of his eyes like black tears rolling down his face. His lips are similarly darkened and a perpetual frown as been drawn from the corners with the same black liner. He wears an worn aldori dueling blade from his hip and even walking up the steps he seems prepared to run someone through with it. ”Congratulations, lords and ladies, but I am afraid that I must interrupt the ceremony a moment.”
The crowd stirs in confusion and those in the wedding party except for Noleski, who just seems to sway in place a moment and blink in confusion, turns their attention towards the man. Ioseph immediately takes a threatening step towards the man his hand going to duel his blade. ”Don't be haste, Lord Mayor. People will get hurt.” At the moment a boom rings out through the square and the sickening noise of a bullet ripping through flesh and bone can be heard immediately the Lady Orlovsky collapses. ”The next one could be aimed at any number of hearts. You should step back. Now, my friends amongst the crowd will be helping to liberate you people of your earthly processions. Trust me, you would rather give them up.”
The crowd begins to shift around as people begin to push away from a number of unsavory men amongst the crowd with bags for loot and weapons to kill the few people that try to resist in order to bring the others in line as the crowd is trapped in place by itself as those on the fringes can't see what is happening.
Each one of you are pretty trapped in your position by crowds and obstacles so I am not going to bother with a map for a combat yet. Other then the bandit on the steps, all the other ones are in the midst of the crowd as well. Most of the dignities aren't going to spring into action because of the hidden threat of a sniper which could get the Lord Mayor, King, Queen, or even Lord Orlovsky killed.
You catch the glint of the barrel of a rifle edged out of a slightly open window at the opposite end of the square from the statue. Well-position sniper perch since the shooter will likely be able to get away in the fleeing crowd at the end of the violent robbery.