Fang and Shackle (Inactive)

Game Master Kagehiro

As the aggression between Molthune and Nirmathas boils over, something far darker stirs in the depths of the Fangwood.

Current Map: Cathedral Dining Hall

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"They have gone to ground, sire."

A response did not seem forthcoming. Imperial Governor Markwin Teldas casually removed his electrum-framed monocle and began polishing it intensely. A man with a dour face and an immaculately groomed mustache, there existed few who would have thought the man's visage fitting for the height of his station. Creases and lines from worries beyond counting compounded the age the man already wore. His crimson uniform fit him more snugly than it had in the past, though mostly hidden by the regal purple mantle draped about his shoulders. Despite his decidedly underwhelming bearing, the man's shrewd tactics had seen Molthune thrive as never before. The war effort went well, the nation's coffers managed to bloat in spite of a seemingly perpetual conflict, and the cities and populations owing his sovereignty their allegiance continued to swell. Markwin Teldas was a political titan, regardless of the guise he wore. Which made it all the more worrisome that he remained silent in the face of the Spymaster's report.


A long sigh, exhaled in a hiss between still clenched teeth, precedes the chastisement that follows. "Foremost of a network requiring considerable, painstaking detail. Remind me, Thazren; what should one do with a tool that no longer serves its purpose?" Despite his eyes never having left the monocle yet remaining in the Imperial Governor's hands, Thazren can feel Markwin's eyes on him—the full weight of a volcano's ire hidden in the depths of those orbs despite their placid facade. Even before the Spymaster has a chance to speak, he is cut off once more by further reprimand.

"Nirmathi rebels roam my lands with impunity; Pathfinders canvas the depths of the Backar uncontested; and I am now told that agents of the Umbral Court have infiltrated our nation en masse." Finally, the Imperial Governor's eyes raise to meet that of his Spymaster. A putrid creature of disgusting heritage. That General Hakar thought the wretch could be useful had obviously been a gross miscalculation. The beginnings of a sneer paint Markwin's face. "Your services, overestimated as they were, shall be required no longer, Thazren. Your blunders and flagging competence shall not be suffered by the sovereignty of Molthune any longer." Turning to the wall of Imperial Guard flanking him, the Imperial Governor concludes: "Remove this pest from my sight."

Gauntleted hands force the wererat out of the room in a flurry of squeaks and protests. The Imperial Governor reclines into the thick cushions of his chair. No more time remained for half-measures and missteps. In the years to come, his legacy would be decided. It would not be a memory of failure.


     F A N G   A N D   S H A C K L E

The failures of yesteryear hang heavy like a burial shroud over Braganza. A crown jewel of western Molthune without no eyes enough to see; without hands enough to uplift; without mouths enough to praise. Districts sprang up each year, ever in excess of the bodies available to inhabit. Walls demolished and expanded, standing bastions of impregnable stone playing home to a host numbering too few to properly man them. Painstaking extravagance and detail afforded to structures inevitably falling to ruin and disrepair, only to be rebuilt and fall to the same languishing cycle for as long as the city has existed. This year would be different. A storm of change and providence brewed on Braganza's horizon. Prince-Archbanker Cole Ravnagask had labored long under the scrutiny of Abadar. The time for reaping the rewards long overdue would finally be realized.

Nestled in the gentle rolling hills of Molthune's plains with the oppressive, frost-capped wall that is The Mindspin Mountains dominating the western horizon, Braganza is a shining beacon viewed from afar. The city sprawls outwards and upwards more each year and the fading luster of bronzed, silvered, and gold streets and structures seems not so apparent from such a great distance. A throng of farmers, laborers, merchants, slaves, and everything in between pour into Braganza like the tide of the sea, much as they have in years past. As the leaves begin to wither and wane, the prospects of those bound for Braganza begin to flourish and wax. Judging from the turnout, this year looks to be the biggest yet. A prospect that has not been lost on the Prince-Archbanker.

Festooned in banners, floral decadence, and tapestries, the streets themselves seem jubilant as visiting parties begin making arrangements and greasing the required palms to afford themselves prime real-estate in what will inevitably become this year's makeshift bazaar. The charm of the city soon fades however, as it does each Building Season, when those masses vying for a spot to stake their claim become subjected to the days-long process of verification and permit granting. As a result, those not first through the gates are forced to settle their caravan outside of the city proper in a quickly developing tent-and-wagon city. Thievery is kept to a minimum due to the vigilance of both city guards and Abadaran Justiciars, whose ranks seem to be further emboldened and swollen this year by cadres of knights bearing iconography on their arms and armor not seen before: a gauntlet grasping a dark iron cross in a ring of runic script.

And that, dear would-be heroes, is where we shall kick off the Pregame phase of the adventure. I'm going to be moving things along shortly, likely in two days, to get everyone established in the city among the builders and hawkers. For the time being, those of you without official ties to Braganza are being confined to the tent city outside of the city walls until such a time that the city's authorities can officially recognize your right to enter. Those of you with ties to Braganza, while free to travel into and out of the city, do bear in mind that the incredible variety of peoples and goods outside in the makeshift tent-city are a very lucrative prospect that is not easily ignored. Those of you with Campaign Traits will likely have official obligations to maintain a presence therein—take liberty with this as you see fit; or I can give you a friendly nudge in regards to what you should be doing. Members of the Order will mostly be charged with keeping the peace (or acting as overseer to the Squires that have been given this opportunity to demonstrate competence in keeping the peace).

Keep in mind this is mostly a freeform role play arena meant to showcase your writing and playing abilities. I'll try to keep a spare eye on the thread in case questions crop up, but expect NPC involvement to be sparse for the time being. Specific questions, PM me or drop them in the Discussion thread.

//Braganza, Molthune//
     //Cloudy Day, Chilly; 52° F//
          //Rova 1, 4711 AR//

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3

Zeltresh had never been that comfortable around humans. Not exactly an unusual attitude for a gnome - humans were always looking down their noses at the little folk, and not just because of the height difference - but he had always reacted strongly when people tried to intimidate others. Especially strongly. Yes, his reaction was often......heated.....

As he moved around the tent city he had to keep reminding himself to be careful. With so many people crammed into such a makeshift space tempers were flaring every moment. The last thing he wanted to do was draw attention to himself. Zeltresh remembered the time a few weeks ago, when after defending himself on the road a soldier had tried to recruit him to the cause. He had liked the attention, and it was not as if he cared either way about the politics of the war, but after a while the man's persistence had gotten on his nerves a bit.

The gnome figured he would enlist eventually. Join the army, blow things up, and get paid for it? Yes please! He would just do it on his terms. And right now his priority was finding answers about himself and his heritage, and that meant finding this Desmodius, wherever he was.

Zeltresh looked at the burgeoning crowds around him waiting for admission into the city. And how am I going to do that? He was all too aware of how few coins he had left, how much it had cost to arrive at the dead-end that was Garund. He had made his way to Braganza on the hope that mage had travelled here like so many others had. A long-shot at best, a very costly error at worst. The gnome was not even sure he had enough left to gain access to the city when the time came. So for now he wandered among the other waiting applicants, hoping to get a lucky break while trying not to attract too much attention to himself.

And he needed that lucky break to happen soon - tensions were building as people waited for the bureaucracy, a dangerous cauldron about to boil over...........

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

Vincent stood inside the lobby of the Command building of the Order, as he’d begun referring to it to himself, looking out into the training yard where the Squire’s all stood, awaiting orders. Quite a large, and impressive gathering, if he must say so himself. His cousin and his officers had been busy in filling the Order’s ranks, and as such, many of his fellow initiates had received promotions to Field-Squire. Not much of a difference, really, but it did mean that five of these initiates would be under his direct command. A feeling he found to be both pleasant, and frightening.

”Sire,” Therian’s familiar voice called out to him from behind, ”Dante has gathered together the initiates under your command. They await your orders at the gates out of the yard, sir.”

Vincent turned and looked at his valet. He smiled reassuringly at him. ”Excellent Therian. Have Midnight and your horses been prepared?”

”Indeed sire. Dante has them ready for you at the stables.”

Good men. I’m glad father allowed me to take them with me on this posting.

Vincent looked down to make sure he was presentable. The dark red crimson leather of his armor, a good bit darker than the standard Molthune colors, but close enough to note the connection, created a splendid contrast for the gleaming steel of the Orders sigil on its chest piece. Ever Forward. Ever Onward. A splendid motto, cousin.

He walked out of the building and strode towards the stables. He paid no heed to the squires in the yard snapping to attention as he passed. He felt no need, it was their duty to pay respects to those of higher station, no matter how miniscule the difference. The warmth of the season’s sun bore down upon him as he crossed the yard, and he could not help but hope the weather would hold out and this building season would finally attract a populace to the city worthy of its grandeur.

”Thank you, Dante!” Vincent called out as he watched his footman guide his stallion from the stables. It was a magnificent beast, its color as dark as its namesake on a moonless night. The ceremonial barding of the Order intensified the dark tone of the horse’s coat.

”Sire,” Dante bowed his head from his own horse as he handed the reigns over to his liege. Vincent mounted his horse, and once Therian had taken his mount, he nudged Midnight onward and headed for the gates to the city proper. There, he saw five squires of the Order awaiting, who snapped to attention as he and his entourage approached. As he rode, he casually looked over the yard, watching as the other Field-Squires readied their own detachments. Hopefully, we will have a quiet day.

As he finally rides up in front of his own detachment, Vincent looks them all over one by one to make sure they were all appropriately prepared for their first assignment into the tent city beyond the walls. Satisfied, he says ”Men, as you are all aware, building season is upon us, and it’s geared up to be one of the largest yet. As such, the city guard and the Justicars have their hands full keeping things peaceful both inside the city and out. We have been given the task of giving them some relief, to help maintain order in this chaos. This is not normally the type of thing we do, but where duty calls, we are here to answer it. Specifically, we are tasked with watching over the northeastern portion of the caravans outside. To be honest, at this point it’s more of an encampment than a caravan. Maintain visual contact with each other at all times, and should any trouble appear to begin brewing up, all of you convene and hopefully the show of force will put a stop to anything before blood is drawn. If it persists, send a runner to find either myself or another of the Field-Squires. We will be patrolling the center.”

Once it is clear his orders have been received and understood, he leads his detachment out of the city and into the chaos outside Braganza’s gates.


As Vincent and his attendants rode through the camp, he could not help but become the slightest bit enamored with the entire scene. It was almost as if the whole area had become a strange stew of some sort, with ingredients of merchants and tradesmen as opposed to foodstuffs. The whole area was swimming with people of all different heritages hoping to make some coin, or hopefully, make a life here in Molthune.

To be honest, the goings on were going better than he had been led to believe. Most of the merchants seemed to have started peddling wares straight off the carts, not wanting to waste a moment of time. A makeshift tavern had established itself off to the side, barely more than a tent with a wagon with casks of ale being opened as needed, but to those fond of the drink, that was plenty. Sure, here and there a temper would flare up when they felt they had been slighted by the cities officials, but in such times, the convergence of guards, Justicars, and Knights that quickly gathered around tended to put any issues to rest quickly.

Vincent did his best to put the distractions of the scene aside as he rode through the crowds, attempting to maintain the vigilance expected of him by his superiors. At one point, Vincent spotted a squabble between a member of the city guard and what appeared to be the headman of a caravan of stoneworkers. The man seemed to believe he was entitled a free pass into the city, and was likely hoping to bully it out of this lone guard.

Vincent, Therian, and Dante rode through the gathering crowd, and as they broke through to the center of the dispute, Vincent called out, “Is there a problem here?”

”Yer damned well certain there’s a problem he…” the stonemason caught his tongue when he realized he was berating a mounted knight of the Order. A knight flanked by two footmen wearing the tabards of house Teldas. Snapping his mouth shut, but still obviously upset, the man simply looked back to the guard, who now appeared emboldened by the reinforcements, and begrudgingly conceded and walked back to his caravan, barking orders about finding a spot to make camp.

The guard thanked Vincent, and he nodded back to the man in response as he began scanning the crowd for any more signs of trouble. The only oddity that stood out in his mind was a gnome who had been watching the scene, who Vincent managed to lock eyes with if only for a moment, long enough to note the crimson color of them. He blinked a couple times and shook himself free from the gaze, then resumed his patrol.

Male Aasimar Cleric of Nethys 3 l HP: 24/24 l AC: 20 (FF: 17, Touch: 13) l Fort: +6, Ref: +5, Will: +8 l Hero: 4 l Per: +13 | Init +3

A tall man swam through the throng of people as he made his way towards the city proper. Hooded in a black robe with silver trim made of runes, his overlaying armor seemed to absorb the light rather then shine it away as many of the guards did. Most heard the man as he came, his thumping staff preceding his arrival as he walked. Stopped more then once by a guard he showed his holy symbol, a wooden mask half black half white, they let him pass often with a strange look. If they questioned the authenticity of his symbol then they knew nothing of the battlefield or war. You did not waste metal if you could help it, no what proved his words was not his symbol. It was what looked at them from below the hooded robes. An otherworldly gaze whose colors changed and a handsome face that spoke of more then mortality.

He had not come for the market or building season as it was known. He came to spy upon a possible future home or site. He had taken a reprieve from service to Molthune. They had promised much for his aid, he had granted it and survived. They would pay what he was promised and serve his god well for it. In his contemplations someone bumped into him, his arm shot out blocking their path. His head turned to bring his full gaze upon the culprit. An undersized hobgoblin with tight gray skin and tiny red eyes murmured before speaking Common.


"Careful human I may cut your belly open."

"Let me pass."

The hobgoblin growled to drive home his point of not truly asking. The creature flexed it's fingers as if wondering if it could do something before any guards came. Rather if it should in such a place, it's little eyes darted about. The tall man brought his staff point to a familiar pouch on the hobgoblin's belt. The man spoke clearly to the hobgoblin.


"Return my coin. You would be wise not to make threats as well."

The hobgoblins surprise quickly passed as it's little eyes squinted at the man. Before the hobgoblin could make a move, the man placed his staff inside the crook of the hobgoblins arm while stepping forward. It's eyes went wide in shock while the man whispered.


"I am not one to trifle with, you could not kill me in a single strike. I would simply heal myself before you could land a second as well. Your a thief, if you lack the skills to take my coin without notice, then fail to surprise me and get surprised in turn. Do you truly think you can fight me fairly and quickly before the guards arrive. We both know you can not. Return my coin and do not trouble me again. You may yet leave under your own feet if you do."

The man showed no malice or taunting to the hobgoblin. Slowly it returned the stolen property. Leaving quickly to be lost in the crowd of shifting people. The tall man walked on, brushing a hand on a cart of some bad foodstuffs next to the cast fallen merchant who owned it. By the time the merchant looked upon his foodstuffs yet again, they were fresh and pure once more. The faint sound of a thumping staff was lost in the noise of the surrounding crowd.

Hope I did not overstep. :)

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Lost amidst the thumping throng of bodies walked a human male, not much older than a boy. Like many other inhabitants of Molthune, Adurus's looks betrayed a Chelish descent, dark and close cropped hair atop a pale face. Unlike most inhabitants of Molthune, Adurus's unshielded face showed the markings of a terrible burn scar, running across both eyes and part of his left cheek. His pupils were milky white, and those who took a fraction of a second to look at his face amongst the crowd thought him a blind man. Adurus walked with his eyes downcast, a look of concentration or maybe frustration playing across his face. That damn recruiting officer. Do I look like a blind man? He thought about that a second, then corrected himself, Well, I know I look like a blind man, but I showed him I'm not! Why does he think I'm somehow incapable of combat? Adurus let out a long sigh as he followed the flow of foot traffic around a corner and into a smaller street.

Well, that's one company knocked off the list. Or maybe I can find another recruiter in Braganza. Hmm... Adurus scratched his head as he puzzled his situation, and accidentally collided head first with a burly woman. Both of them staggered and were pushed to the side of the street by the press of bodies, winding up at the entrance to a makeshift tavern. "Hey," the woman cried much too loudly, "Watch where you're going!" She looked into Adurus's eyes for a moment, and with an expression of disbelief clear across her face, slowly raised her hand in front of Adurus's eyes. Adurus scowled, knowing well what she was doing and why. She paused her hand a few inches in front of his face and began wagging it back and forth as she said, once more much too loudly, "Hey, are you bl..."

"No, I'm not blind, you imbecile!" Adurus quickly snapped at her, staring into her eyes with a mixture of disgust and annoyance. The woman removed her arm from in front of his face and placed it on her chest as she replied haughtily, "Oh, well then maybe you should watch where you're going!" Adurus growled, demonstrating his impatience with her as he started to rant. "Maybe you should watch where you're going! You were on the wrong side of the street and..." As Adurus continues his tirade the woman starts a rant of her own. "Are you kidding me? You weren't even looking at where you were going and you..." Both of them continued to yammer at each other for several more sentences, both of them vying to be the last one with a word in the argument.

The customers of the portable tavern rolled their eyes, groaned annoyance at the loud annoyance, or murmured something about the indecency of some people. Finally the bartender, a stubby man who might be mistaken for a dwarf, wound his way around the small stall's bar in between the two. The bickering continued as he shoved himself between them, insults and spit flying overtop his balding head until he shouted, "ALRIGHT, ENOUGH! GET YER ARSES OFFA HERE, AND BOTHER SOMEONE ELSE!" At that Adurus and the woman finally broke off, with the woman starting off down the street one way muttering and Adurus walking in the opposite direction. Stupid wench, they always gotta think I'm blind, and I've always gotta prove I'm not. What in the hells makes them think I owe them an explanation? He kept his eyes straight ahead this time as he muttered and thought to himself. After a moment or two of allowing himself more angry thoughts, he sighed and attempted to clear his mind, taking slow breaths and focusing on the inner fire's glow, allowing it's steady flame to soothe him into a meditative state.

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

This post continues from his Story 2

Arzazel wandered the tent city outside Braganza through the semi-solid muddy ruts that passed for streets. He appeared as a collection of incongruities causing instant wariness in the people he passed. First, the stupid grin on his face indicated a naïve simpleton that attracted whores, pickpockets, and con-artists. However, his size and visage signaled a veteran killer warning the quick and weak to keep their distance. He towered above most humans and possessed a physique of hard, corded muscle. Short wiry black hair and chinstrap beard surrounded knowing violet eyes, bushy eyebrows, nose ring, and a toothy maw.

Second, his thick leather pants, stout linen shirt, and voluminous hooded wool cloak reeked of Chelish fashion. However, he wore a veteran muscle cuirass of the Molthune military, which collected him puzzled deference from Molthune authorities and military. Last, his clothes and full backpack looked relatively new indicating wealth but were all mud-splattered and recently stained, as if no attempt was made to maintain them.

For Arzazel was oblivious. He absorbed the new sights as if it was his first time seeing civilization so chaotic, because it was. His home of Egorian was a vision of order: clean stone streets and buildings. Everything in its place. This tent city was its antithesis, and none of the other communities through which he passed to arrive here prepared him enough.

The foreman agreed to include him on the caravan manifest for permit granting, so fortunately Arzazel could just enjoy the sloppy tent city. He planned to return and bunk with the caravan until they all entered the gates. His orders identified landmarks inside the city proper to meet his Silver contact, but he wondered if he would be observed out here. He had learned that the Aspis were like that, patient and observant.

And he stumbled over the gnome. Arzazel had been watching two screaming drovers attempting to disentangle their donkey carts. Stubborn asses, liquefying mud, and precariously leaning cargo had created quite a drama such that he never saw the small fellow. ”Oh, please excuse me, master gnome,” came tumbling out of the looming half-orc as he attempted to help the gnome to his feet. His stupid grin had evaporated and been replaced by such a look of concern, one might have thought the gnome would turn a lash on the imposing half-orc. World savvy veterans would recognize an ideal bump and pickpocket event apparently missed by both parties.

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Adurus soon forgets about the trifling encounter with the woman, letting his mind wander as he walks about the de-facto streets in the tent city. He looks all about, seeing all manners of good being sold in the stalls he passes by, from chunks of the seared meat of an unidentified animal carcass to spectacles or magical scrolls. Knowing well that his finances cannot cover any unnecessary purchases, Adurus merely window shops, occasionally stopping at a stall or tent to peer at the wares or ask a curious question. After perhaps ten minutes (or maybe it was 20?) of walking around and clearing his head, Adurus decided it was time again to start up his search for a branch of the military that would take him on. After all, he wouldn't become a soldier by perusing the wares of travelling merchants.

As he walks, he passes close by a few guards, and takes the time to look over each one and figure out which branch he belongs to. Another Regular... Blast it, they're probably stationed all about this area. Adurus moves with purpose toward another section of the sprawl, meandering about and looking for uniforms. Eventually Adurus's eyes fall upon a horse, its illustrious coat a deep black, hair dark and soft like his mother's was. Upon the noble creature proudly sits a man of the Most Noble Order of the Exalted March. Adurus had learned about the Noble Order during his time in the Golden Glory of the Lawgiver. He was told they consisted of the worshippers of Abadar, Iomedae, and Erastil, as well as a few prestigious nobles whose names were lent to the cause to garner it prestige and high status.

Well, Abadar has been nothing but fair to me before. Perhaps I should look into joining such an order under his name... Though Adurus was not "filled with the love of Abadar," as many of the priests in the Glory would have put it, he wasn't opposed to such a route to the front lines. In hindsight, he wishes he would have asked about it before leaving the Golden Glory. However, he hadn't figured on so many of the recruiting officers judging him based on the appearance of his eyes. Deciding he would at least look into this opportnity, Adurus stepped carefully through the crowd towards the man's horse. He looked up to the dignified looking soldier, squinting as he half-shouted over the crowd, "Hey. Y'know what place someone such as myself would find a recruiter for your Order?" His lowly pedigree is blatantly obvious given his crass lack of manner.

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

Vincent had nearly ridden past the man who had spoken to him in such a common manner before realizing it was in fact himself that had been addressed. He reigned his horse in, Therian and Dante following suit. Dante was moving to reprimand the commoner, but Vincent held up his hand to cease his advance.

The man appeared well built, but his raiment made him appear more a priest than a soldier. As the man's face had raised to speak to Vincent, he could see the burns across his eyes. Vincent debated whether or not a reminder of station was in order, but ultimately decided not to throw the weight of the Order around on such a pointless act.

The ,an appears well built, and he has obviously seen some sort of conflict judging by his scars. But invitation to the Order is a serious matter. Let's see what I can learn of this man...

Vincent motions to Therian and Dante to keep watch while he spoke with this priest.

"Well met, traveler, and welcome to Braganza. Tell me, what drew you to our building season festivities this year?"

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Adurus takes note of the man barely kept in check by his comrades, and perceives that he's somehow erred. He looks the men over as their apparent leader, the one on the black horse, appears to do the same to him. This lot are well groomed. I knew their group was headed by a bunch of high-class bigwigs, but are they also staffed by them? I hope there's some normal people in their ranks, or they're not like to get anything done soon.

Adurus keeps his japes inside, his face remaining serious and his milky eyes gazing upward as the leader motions to his companions. The others trot on, the one giving him another dirty look before continuing on his way. Well, I'm sure there's plenty enough room in this order for me to avoid him in the future. He focuses his thoughts again as the mounted man speaks to him, moving slightly to the side of the road to better allow traffic to flow past him.

Vincent Teldas wrote:
"Well met, traveler, and welcome to Braganza. Tell me, what drew you to our building season festivities this year?"

In response, Adurus rubs his chin and says, "I came to this city lookin' to join the Molthune military." After a pause and a brief consideration, he adds, "I guess I picked a poor time of year. Hard to get anywhere with these crowds. An' hard to get information 'bout recruitin' practices an' such." He smiles tentatively at Vincent, trying to make up for whatever slight he caused earlier with a friendly attitude.

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5
Adurus Krupt wrote:
"I came to this city lookin' to join the Molthune military." After a pause and a brief consideration, he adds, "I guess I picked a poor time of year. Hard to get anywhere with these crowds. An' hard to get information 'bout recruitin' practices an' such."

Vincent leans onto his saddle as he relaxes a bit, glancing towards his attendants as they keep watch for him. "Normally, the military would gladly take anyone who could walk, take orders, and swing a blade. Not that anything has changed, mind you. Just that, here in Braganza, things are a bit busy this time of year, as you can see," Vincent rises as he finishes his statement, gesturing to the pandemonium around them.

Looking back to the man, he says, "What is your name, and from where do you hail?"

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3

With so much going on amongst the wagons and the travelers, there is rarely a lack of things to watch. At one point Zeltresh stops to watch as two nearby humans begin arguing over right-of-way for their wagons. The gnome almost chuckled as the two began yelling at each other while still blaming their poor donkeys for not being smart enough to avoid the precarious situation. Its like the blind leading the blind.....

Suddenly Zeltresh is knocked from behind, stumbling a few steps forward and failing to keep his balance. With one knee on what might be the only patch of dry ground for leagues the gnome twists around, a flicker of red flame in his eyes as he looks up at his assailant. And up. And up.

Before Zeltresh can react to the perceived slight he is shocked to hear the half-orc apologizing, surprised at the gentle touch as the brute helps him to his feet. Whatever reaction the gnome had flies from his lips as the large form actually cowers a bit at his diminutive victim, and onlookers might imagine that the flickering was simply a trick of the light.

" harm, friend. This place has us packed in like cattle, can't imagine how you'd move through this crowd without bumping a few shoulders." He casts another appraising eye upward. "Although I doubt there are many shoulders as high as yours. Maybe some of the horses?"

Zeltresh chuckles at his small joke, but his attention is drawn across the crowd to the jet black mount that appears out of the crowd as if summoned by his words. The rider, clearly a noble and clearly with the military, sits high in his saddle barely able to hide the look is disdain on his face. The half-orc next to him all but forgotten, he watches the soldier as another human approaches and begins speaking. The reaction of the noble and his men is hard to mistake, the contempt open for all to see. The crowd is too noisy to follow the conversation, but a few of the commoner's words drift across to where the unlikely pair were standing. One of them is clearly "recruiter".

Looking back up to his accidental companion, Zeltresh makes a show of brushing himself off and repositioning himself so that the mountain of a half-orc stands between him and the soldier. "Right. No harm. Not many of either of our kind here, are there? I am called Zeltresh, who are you my friend and what brings you to this bizarre place?"

Male Human Gunslinger 3 | HP 31/31 | AC:17, T:13, F:14 | CMD:16, CMB:+3 | Save (F+6, R+6, W+5) | Init:+4 | Hero: 1/2 | Grit 1/1 | Perc: +7 | (+2 Curse/Fear/Emotion w/gun in hand)

Eldred Pentwert woke to the sounds of reveille and a pounding head. There was the strong temptation to take out ole Lia and do something truly awful, but instead he swung his feet off his rack and planted them on the cold stone floor. Immediately the normal aches raced up his shin bones and rattled around in his guts before fading away. He ran a hand across his jaw, feeling the stubble mixture of browns and grays, then let his arms rest on his thighs. Eldred kept his eyes closed as the room spun slightly, his headache hammered at the insides of his skull like a bunch of orcs on a kettle drum.

Why in the hells did I let Keppish talk me into drinking so much? he thought regretfully, letting his head hang and taking shallow breaths.

The smell of freshly lit Taldoran tobacco wafted to him from the doorway to his tiny room. Eldred new the smell and the man that would accompany it before he even opened his eyes. ”Mornin’, Sarge.” Had he really let the man get into his room without him so much as stirring? Braganza was already dulling his edge.

”You look like a steaming pile of gobber-scat, Corporal.” Sergeant Major Leonid Keppish offered.

And there he was. Eldred harrumphed and stood from his rack slowly. ”Thanks, Sarge. Glad you have an eye for detail. That’s the way I feel. ” The two had been out too late drinking and rolling bones. The gunslinger offered a salute, less than heartfelt after he noticed Keppish was holding a newly pressed uniform over a piece of hanging wood. ”Oh tell me that’s not for me.”

The uniform went over the back of the desk chair near the door, blood red and gold and blacks stark in the drab color of his tiny quarters. ”Your volunteer spirit isn’t as shining as I’d hoped, Corporal.”

”I wanted to stay at Ramgate, not wander the streets of a bazaar busting cutpurses in the face or looking for greenies to feed the meat-grinder.”

Keppish busied himself with rolling another cigarette, the one he currently was smoking hung from his lips and cast haze into his eyes. The Sergeant Major squinted as he worked, cigarette bobbing along as he spoke. ”Orders are orders, comrade. You are a weapon of the Empire, and our esteemed Lord will pull your trigger as he sees fit. Yours is to be aimed and fired,” He finished packing tobacco into the slip of paper and handed it to Eldred. ”Here, you can lick your own. I won’t spoil you with my higher ranking slobber.”

”Obliged.” It was clear Eldred only was thanking him for the smoke, not the colorful diatribe. The gunslinger leaned over his desk where a lamp was still lit, igniting his smoke and puffing it to life. ”Where to on this fine morning?” He looked down at the desk where a square looking-glass was situated. In the reflection he saw his grizzled features, a face far older than the 27 years Eldred had on his back. The scar down the right side of his face...part of his right ear missing… Yeah, a lot of leagues on the grim face looking back at him.

”Practice yards.” Keppish answered his earlier question.

”Drek.” He took a drag from his smoke and then picked up the new uniform from his desk chair. ”This won’t match what I ate last night.”

Keppish only raised an eyebrow in question.

”When I get down to those practice yards, I’m gonna puke all over the front of it.”

Keppish pinched his cigarette between his two first forefingers and pointed at the uniform. ”You needn’t worry, comrade, there’s a sash included under which you can hide your vomit.”


Keppish shrugged. ”Get dressed. I’ll be expecting you in one hour.” With that, he wheeled on his boot heels and exited the tiny quarters in a trail of Taldan tobacco haze, the door closing behind him.

In his distant memory, Eldred heard his halfling friend Frig ask him… ”What’s so good about a new uni, Dread?”

”What’s that, Frig?” the gunslinger found himself answering aloud to the empty room.

”So you know who to throw in the frontline!”

He laughed, a near cough as he inhaled his smoke too sharply.

”What’sa matter, Dread? First time a girl like you’s ever smoked?”

”Shut up, Frig.” He answered his memory, tossing the new uniform on his bed.

Echoing in Eldred’s memory, he could hear his dead friend’s laughter.


”Attention in the yard, you quibbling dung sacks!! Keppish’s voice boomed within the practice yards. The batch of twenty boys attempted to come to attention, but their spacing was all wrong.

Keppish motioned for some of his soldiers to busy themselves with their prod-sticks, beating the men into a more accurate spacing. Eldred remembered those sticks when he was green, hafts of oak or ash, trued up and hardened and weighted and fitted with tiny, needle-like pins.

Lots of fun, those prod-sticks, thank ya kindly.

Some of the boys cried out, others simply moved stood up to his tormentor when he saw he had height on him.

That’s a mistake, boy… Eldred thought, dwelling in the shadows cast by a second floor walkway in the back of the yard.

The shorter soldier, a blonde man not more than twenty and missing an eye, caught the greenie in the join of him, sending him to the ground in pain. Once there, the soldier proceeded to kick him soundly.

”I am Sergeant Major Leonid Keppish, 1st Regimental Fusiliers, 3rd Company.” Keppish roared, his hands clasped behind his back as he stalked the front line of the assembly. ”You have been chosen by others for your desire to serve Molthune and your aptitude in alchemy. I will choose from among you those I deem possessing the guts to survive and the brains necessary to not get me killed during training.”

Someone in the group snickered at the last. Another soldier lunged forward and dragged him from the line and proceeded to beat him and leave to moan next to the other greenie.

Keppish continued without missing a step. ”Over the next months, if you survive, I’ll see that you’re given a posting at the front. There, if you live through your first tour, perhaps then you’ll be granted entrance into the Imperial Fusiliers.”

That was his cue. Eldred drew ole Lia with the smooth precision that marked his history with the weapon. It cleared the oiled-leather holster, a somehow comforting squinch of noise. In that same motion, the gunslinger aimed and fired, sending the lead ball through the ranks of boys, past Leonid and into a pile of grain sacks downrange.

Ole Lia’s voice thundered, loud and sharp The blast echoed off the walls of the practice yards and sent those birds still brave enough to remain flying. The belch of smoke from the end of the gun’s barrel lifted skywards to join them.

Save for only two, the boys in their ranks fell to the ground, some shouting in fear. All looked around themselves and then to the rear of their formation. They held their ears, their eyes were wide...but still, two of them showed some spark.

In practiced motions ground into him in the face of instructors and enemies alike, Eldred cleared and reloaded his weapon. He walked through the ranks of boys as he did so, boots echoing, nodding appreciatively to the two boys who’d kept their feet.

”You bunch of blubbering little sissies!! I’ll birch the lot of you till your arses bleed!” Keppish spat on the ground, face going red. ”Get up, get up, get up!!” He stomped forward and kicked one of the boys in the front rank in his rump, sending him sprawling into the dirt face first. ”Get up, or so help me I’ll line you up and shoot you myself!!”

Eldred slipped ole Lia into the shoulder rig under his left arm and stood behind Keppish as he berated the boys in front of him. The yelling faded into the background of the gunslinger’s mind. His focus was on weighing the potentials in front of him. Of the twenty, the two who’d stood drew his attention first. They’d get the harshest treatment...see if they survived and their spines stayed true.


Atop the crenellated walls of Braganza, Eldred looked out upon the growing tent and wagon city. This mess and the lake of drek-swilling fortune hunters in the city were going to be his responsibility too. Well, at least it was the responsibility of the guard troop in which he found himself a member. ”A heavy presence to keep the peace,” his superiors had said back Fort Ramgate when he’d been given the assignment.

Truth be told, there were quite a few of them down there he’d like to put a heavy presence on...quite a few. What did this lot know of Morthune? Had they bled for her? Had they killed for her?

”Taking in the sites, Dread?” Keppish’s familiar voice and scent stepped up behind Eldred and took a position next to him on the wall.

”I’m on the next watch,” He stabbed a thumb towards the stones at his feet where one of the city gates was located. ”They wanted me to be at the gates,” He spat upon the top of a crenellation. ”Commander thinks I need to get a better feel for the folks going in and out for Building Season.”

”So yours is the first face they see coming into the city?” Keppish chuckled.

The gunslinger shrugged. ”Last bit of my shift will be street patrol.”


Eldred’s sharp eyes picked out a trio of horsemen among the crowds of the tent city, the fine cut of their uniforms and cloaks standing out. ”Those from the Order?”

”Field-squires, I suppose.” Keppish squinted.

They were making quick work of a disagreement, sending a loud mouth away with his tail tucked. ”How long since they had swaddling clothes gripping their berries?”

”Caution yourself, Dread. They’re considered officers among the general ranks of their Order.”

Eldred raised an eyebrow, causing the scar on the right side of his face to stretch another half an inch. ”That so, huh? So they’re still wearing them, then.”

”Some of them have been in the drek. Don’t underestimate.”

”Yes, sir, Sergeant sir.” He respected Keppish’s opinion, but Eldred judged the cut of a man’s cloth not by how he wore the uniform or straightened his neck, but how straight he kept his spine in the fight.

”Are ever going to replace that longcoat? It’s faded…”

Eldred gave his friend - his only friend - a hard look. ”No sir. Not if I can help it.”

”Fair enough.” Keppish changed the subject. ”Only two from the lot today?”

”That’s my job. You gather them, I’ll sift the chaff.”

”Fair enough.”

In the bowels of the wall they stood upon, a gong sounded the preparations for next watch. Eldred stepped away from the edge of the wall, noting the same trio of mounted men...this time one of the men, the leader it seemed, was speaking with a different person.

Eldred stepped away, making note of the man and turned to Keppish to salute. ”Sir.”

His friend returned his salute. ”What do you hear, Dread?”

”Nothing but the wind, sir.” Eldred responded with a smirk.

”Then load your gun and bring me back the big wolf’s head.” With that, Keppish spun on his heels and marched away.

Eldred Pentwert, 2nd Regiment Fusiliers, 1st Scouts of Braganza, adjusted his new uniform beneath his old longcoat. The coat’s reds were a bit faded, but it had the stains of his blood and the blood of his comrades upon the cloth. They were his badges of rank...his trials...his history. The gunslinger departed the wall and descended the stairs where he would take up his post at the gates.

He patted his left side, the comforting feeling of his gun beneath the coat. ”C’mon, ole Lia, time to go to work.”

Greetings all. I'll be at the gate, observing the comings and goings of the people. Feel free to step up. I'll be the human with the long scar across the right side of his face and part of his right ear missing. He's gruff, but he'll converse.:)

Male Aasimar Cleric of Nethys 3 l HP: 24/24 l AC: 20 (FF: 17, Touch: 13) l Fort: +6, Ref: +5, Will: +8 l Hero: 4 l Per: +13 | Init +3

A thumping sound was growing as the tall form approached the gate. At last he had made it pass most of the tents towards the true, if mostly empty, city. Looking for a guard of some sort with the look of knowledge he scanned the area, his shifting eyes seeming to glow with in his hood. He spied some horsemen but they were distracted with someone, then their was the gate keeper. He had none of the puffery that the horsemen showed, a man of the battlefield from his dress and scar. Good, that made things easier for him. He moved towards the man in earnest.

Standing a full head above the guardsmen he has to look down to address him, his voice coming from the shadow of his hood. A slightly deep thing with an undercurrent of power, yet strangely not loud.

"Greetings I am Nathmir. I am new to Braganza, is their anything you could tell me of her. Sir?"

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

The half-orc slowly removed his gloved hands, which could palm the gnome’s wee head, from near the gnome as he straightened up and replied. He followed the gnome’s gaze toward the knight. Arzazel had seen plenty of hellknights in his life, and this one did not look as menacing. Plus, Arzazel had no interest in joining the Molthune military despite how he was equipped.

Looking back toward the drama that caused his distraction, he was disappointed to see the carts and beasts untangled and moving apart. So much for cheap entertainment, he thought to himself.

Returning his attention to the gnome, he responded to the questions, ”Arzazel, call me Arzazel. I’ve seen many half-orcs here but few gnomes. I’ve had never talked to a gnome before.” Then he asked a question that his previous master Thelton used many times to start conversations. ”Maybe I could buy you drink to apologize?"

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2
Vincent Teldas wrote:
"Normally, the military would gladly take anyone who could walk, take orders, and swing a blade. Not that anything has changed, mind you. Just that, here in Braganza, things are a bit busy this time of year, as you can see,"

Adurus nodded his head at that, keeping his unsettling white eyes on the guard as he replied, "Yes, well, you'll find me as capable of combat as the next man... Though perhaps less capable at long-distance warfare. The recruiters for the Backar Forest Rangers thought that should disqualify me from training. Can't say I blame them, given their line of work." He smiled amiably, and it wasn't readily apparent whether this line is the truth or merely a joke.

Vincent Teldas wrote:
"What is your name, and from where do you hail?"

Adurus considered this for a moment, coughing into his hand a little as he thought. Deciding he had no reason to lie (especially to someone who might discover such a lie later), Adurus replied, "I came from a little farming village to the north and east. Walked from there to here a couple years back. I was picked up by the local church of Abadar as a laborer when they discovered I had magic powers. And your name, sir?" Adurus wondered about this particular man's disposition. Those Abadarans can be dedicated zealots to the letter of the law; then again, maybe this man is no Abadaran at all. He decided to let the man continue to lead the conversation.

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

"Vincent Teldas, Field-Squire of the Most Noble Order of the Exalted March. The black haired man there is Therian, my Valet, and beside him is Dante, my Footman."

Thinking back to what the man had said about magic he smirked. "The order is not without it's magic users, surely. Many of us have learned to blend sword with spell..." As if to emphasize his point, Vincent used a bit of his harmless but flashy magics to cause electricity to crackle from and around his eyes. "If you are intent on making an impression on The Order and gain an invitation, feel free to stick with me and, should I think it a possibility, I'll pass it up the line and we will see. But I make you no promises...I'm afraid I didn't catch your name..."

I love Prestidigitation. Just love it.

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Adurus, upon learning Vincent's name, did a nodding motion to him, then to each of the others in turn, whether or not they responded in any meaningful way. He noted no obviously displayed holy symbol on any of the three, and thought to himself, I suppose they would be nobles then, if not holy men. He studied Vincent's face a little closer. Brown eyes framed by a face harder-looking than most noble officers. I wonder how much combat he has seen, Adurus wonders a little naïvely, his boyishness poking through his hard adult thoughts.

Spellcraft roll: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 8

Upon seeing the demonstration of magic, Adurus once again did a nodding motion, giving deference to the man for his magical prowess. Though unable to place the exact magical effect the man is using, Adurus assumed it was some minor arcane illusion, as Vincent seemed level-headed enough not to use any magic which could cause harm in so careless a fashion. He is obviously not the wizardly sort, Adurus muses silently, calling upon his knowledge of the spellcasting arts. Perhaps one of the battle magi?

At the end of the mini speech, Adurus replies to Vincent, "Sorry, my name is Adurus Krupt. Pleased to meet you." Not knowing exactly what the soldier had in mind when he said "stick with me," Adurus assumed he should stay nearby. He placed his hands at his side, one hand first reflexively going back to his pack to make sure it was not cut into or opened.

After a few moments of standing around awkwardly, and fishing for something to talk about with Vincent, Adurus attempted to talk shop: "So what type of magic do you practice? You do not dress as a wizard."

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

Motioning for the Adurus to follow along on his patrol, he continued his small talk with the commoner. He found the minor distraction relaxing while he rode the streets, as up to this point, things had simply been a matter of ride, watch, and try to intimidate down any signs of trouble.

"I'm not entirely certain there IS a name for it. As a young lad I developed the talent naturally. Some have referred to it as sorcery, but the mage in my father's employ claimed that was not the case either. I've managed to learn to control it to perform help myself and my comrades in battle."

Just then, having altered his position on the street, happened to catch a glimpse of the gnome from earlier, now seemingly in a conversation with a very large orc blood built like a mountain. Casting a shrewd eye their way to make sure there wasn't any trouble brewing, Vincent continued. "And you? I would guess by your dress you are a member of a temple...Abadar perhaps? Though, you bear no holy symbols...unaffiliated with any one church perhaps?"

Continuing to observe the half-orc, and noting his gesture towards the ale wagon, Vincent relaxes a bit in their regard and resumes scanning the crowd from this position. A sharp whistle gets the attention of Therian and Dante, and they return to their previous flanking positions, Therian watching in the same direction as Vincent, Dante observing the opposite direction, though Dante maintains a questionable eye on Adurus.

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3
Arzazel wrote:
Returning his attention to the gnome, he responded to the questions, ”Arzazel, call me Arzazel. I’ve seen many half-orcs here but few gnomes. I’ve had never talked to a gnome before.” Then he asked a question that his previous master Thelton used many times to start conversations. ”Maybe I could buy you drink to apologize?"

Zeltresh could not help but smile at that. "I'd say there's no need, but who am I to turn down a drink? Although I doubt we'll find a good Taldan Fire-Brandy here......." He threw another glance toward the soldier as he started moving toward the ale cart and actually makes eye-contact for a brief second. Looks like he's made a catch today. So why is he staring at me?

He is not at all surprised when the ale cart's selection is limited to....ale. It is a dark brew, tasty and heady despite being slightly watered down. Zeltresh allows Arzazel to buy the first round but is quick to buy the second. He finds himself leading the conversation more than he'd like to be. Even though he is used to guarding his words by now the gnome finds the half-orc's personality disarming and easy to talk to.

"I guess I'd call myself a scholar. Been to quite a few places trying to learn about......some of the mysteries around us. Found out about this mage known as Desmodius that has similar interests as me so I've been trying to find him. I've been travelling for months, following any clue to where this Desmodius might be, but no luck yet. So with everyone for miles around coming here for Building Season, I figured why not try looking here?"

From his vantage point at the ale cart Zeltresh continues to watch the crowd for anything of interest. That soldier and his entourage remain at the edge of his view. He finds his gaze drawn in that direction a little too ofter: he makes eye contact at least twice more as he talks. Way to avoid attention: stare at a bunch of soldiers til they notice you.

He actively stops himself from looking around and focuses back on his drinking partner. "But what of you? What brings you to Braganza? Enlisting"

HP: 31/31
AC 18 T 14 FF 14 / Fort +6, Ref +7, Will +1 / Percep. +7 / Init +5

A man comes striding out of the city gate into the chaotic tent city, past Nathmir and Eldred. He stands two heads taller than most people, and his shoulders are half again as wide as the average man's. His bronzed skin is stretched tight over hard muscles. The warrior has no visible body hair, his head is also shaved. Sampson's large, recessed, dark eyes meet everything around him directly and unflinchingly. They are colder than the lifeless void of the Dark Tapestry. His upper left arm and shoulder are heavily tattooed with geometric glyphs and sigils. His upper right arm has four two-inch long horizontal scars cut across it.

He wears a faded red, patched Molthunite army uniform which has had the sleeves roughly hacked off to make way for his shoulders, over a sleeveless chainmail shirt. The uniform is crisscrossed by two bandoleers carrying several sunrods and a blacksmith's tools. The chevrons on the shoulder of the uniform mark the rank of sergeant. His chest is pinned with a medal indicating having been wounded in battle, and another for exceptional action in the face of danger. Sheathed across his back is a massive forward curving blade. It has the look of a one handed sword, simply enlarged to gargantuan proportions. There's another smaller version of the sword sheathed at his waist, and a spiked cestus on one hand. His legs are covered with practical looking leather breeches. There are strange, open-topped circular sheathes strapped to the outside of his thighs, each containing several chakram. Over everything he wears an elbow length grey cloak lined with oilskin and containing a few pockets.

The bronzed giant notices Eldred keeping watch at the gate, and nods to him as he strolls past. Lets see what opportunities to better yourself present themselves today, he thinks, taking in the chaotic scene in front of him.

Male Human Gunslinger 3 | HP 31/31 | AC:17, T:13, F:14 | CMD:16, CMB:+3 | Save (F+6, R+6, W+5) | Init:+4 | Hero: 1/2 | Grit 1/1 | Perc: +7 | (+2 Curse/Fear/Emotion w/gun in hand)

@Nathmir, got ya in this one. Response in this post.

Eldred tosses his cigarette to the ground, toeing it out then resuming his search of the crowd. So far the caravan lines to get into the city proper stretched far beyond his own patience level. One man selling some kind of dry-aged meat that smelled like a dead orc’s arse. Another thought he had the solution to proper wall supports…

Then there was this one. A short, stubby human who seems absolutely certain that the people of, the people of Morthune would benefit from his jewelry shop being safely established within the city walls.

”That a fact?” Eldred asks. He steps closer to the man who was now being flanked by two more soldiers. ”There’s two ways you’re getting through this gate,” He holds up a single finger. ”You can wait your turn, allowing the officials here to do their job. Might be a day, might be a week.”

A second finger. ”Or two, I can escort you to the jail. It’s in the city…” Eldred glances over his shoulder and then back to the jeweler. ”...and I can get you in now.”

The jeweler melts under the gunslinger’s gaze. He takes a step back, motioning for his subordinates to do the same. ”We...we’ll await the notification of the officials.”

Folding his arms he simply mutters. ”Thank you,” Give me a reason, please…

Eldred turns away from him, not even watching him leave. But he did note that another individual was approaching the guard post. A taller figure, clothed in black robes, overlaying armor with silvery runes etched throughout. The gunslinger makes eye contact with a pair of guards across the gateway then steps forward to meet the newcomer.

”Greetings, I am Nathmir. I am new to Braganza, is there anything you can tell me of her, sir?”

His eyes… The gunslinger considers his answer for a moment. The man before him isn’t human, possibly Aasimar based on the eyes alone. ”She’s a busy place stranger. Lots of folks seeking entry now…” he waves a hand towards the growing tent city. ” you can see. Building Season it’s called.”

Not one to waste time, Eldred dips a hand into his pouch and withdraws a small leather-wrapped pouch full of tobacco. As he eyes the newcomer, his hands move of their own accord rolling a cigarette. ”Of course that means there’s lots of folk with the burning desire to see within these walls.” Eldred’s brown eyes glance over his shoulder to the gate opening. ”There’s business to be had, fortunes to be made, buildings to be built. Army’s recruiting also…”

Aasimar are good in a fight…especially clerics and paladins… To his left, a giant of a man with a patchwork uniform strides past. Hmmm, perhaps my old longcoat isn't the worst maintained uni in the city. He knuckles a salute to the sergeant and returns his attention to the figure before him.

”I’m Eldred Pentwert, 2nd Regiment Fusiliers, 1st Scouts of Braganza.” The gunslinger slips his tobacco pouch back into his satchel, withdrawing a tendertwig in the same motion to light his cigarette. ”What’s your business, Nathmir?”

@Samson: See that you ninja'd in while I was writing. I edited to give ya a salute.

Male Aasimar Cleric of Nethys 3 l HP: 24/24 l AC: 20 (FF: 17, Touch: 13) l Fort: +6, Ref: +5, Will: +8 l Hero: 4 l Per: +13 | Init +3

For a moment or some trick of light Nathmir's form seems to seethe towards the guard. Yet he remained where he was, anyone looking down at his feet would notice his shadow is not quite lined up with the angle of light. Nathmir gives a respectful nod before speaking.

"My business is surveying. I recently took leave of service to Molthune for it in fact. I have been in service for a few years."

His hand rises to pull back his hood once he leans his staff. A perfectly symmetrical face greets him with a mop of nearly shoulder length black hair with true white highlights, yet his eyes are the oddest of all as they endlessly shift in color. What skin is seen has a shifting tint to it as well over the light tan. He continues speaking once retrieving his staff.

"As I am sure you know immigrants are offered certain rewards for service. Among them is land, hence my presence. Granted my timing could have been better apparently."

He lets out a breath, out of frustration or weariness is uncertain.

"What of yourself Sir Eldred Pentwert, I think it clear you are not a common soldier."

His eyes glance at his holster, a look of recognition.

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

Arzazel pays for the first round of the dark brown ale from his silvers. He already starts feeling the buzz when the gnome buys the second round. His introduction to alcohol during the caravan trip here prepared his taste for the swill, so he would not spit it out. However, his lack of practice had developed little tolerance to the effects beyond his natural constitution.

He follows the eyes of his drinking companion who watches the knight and his entourage and assumes the gnome is in some trouble. Guilt makes the eyes wander like that. I don’t want any trouble. He thought to himself.

Arzazel replies when the gnome returns his attention. ”Business. My master sent me here.” He says as if everyone has a master. Then under his breath, ”It’s not good to eyeball the Law. It only brings problems,” he says and clears his throat.

”What’s a scholar? And what similar interests do you share with this Desmodius?” Those did not seem uncomfortable questions, and he really did want to know.

This character probably has a relatively thick accent. I’ve decided not to write it, because I’ve seen the complications it makes in posting. If the GM wants to read it, I’ll start adding it. Cheers

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3

Zeltresh silently berates himself. If you're not being stealthy enough to fool a half-orc traveler, whats a trained soldier going to think? With a wry smile he raises his cup in a salute.

"And problems are the last thing I want. As for eyeballing them....well, they've been eyeballing me for some time now. Its not the kind of attention I like: I've been burned before, just trying to be more careful."

"Desmodius is a student of the arcane, gifted with energy magics. I know some, but I wish to learn more." He takes another swig of the watery ale. "But it's more than something I know, these energies are who I am. They are a part of me. And when you are a nation at war......" He opens his arms wide to take in the scene around him as the huge human in the faded military armor strides across the road.

He pitches his voice lower. "When you are at war you use every weapon available to you. And these energies, they are a weapon. A powerful weapon." His voice trails off, his bright red eyes following the movements of the soldiers around them. There is no mistaking it this time: it is no reflection or optical illusion, they are lit with an inner light.

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

Arzazel follows the gnome's words closely as an intense student to a appreciated teacher. After a comfortable pause, he questions, "So a scholar can work magic? And you want to join a war?"

Then after a quick sip of his ale, he follows with, "What war? Who's fighting? And for what?" His gaze is serious and focused on the gnome.

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Adurus walks alongside the horse, staying on the side of the street to avoid having to work through the largest part of the bustle. He keeps his eyes forward most of the time, occasionally turning his head to look up to the mounted guard. There is respect in his attitude, and perhaps a little awe. The sort of awe that a child gazes at a seasoned adventurer with. He listens intently through the hubbub to the explanation Vincent gives for his magical powers. After, Adurus adds, "Sounds intriguing. My powers are quite mysterious as well, but they have a name for them. The call my kind oracles, those who receive a blessing and curse from the gods without any apparent reason. These burns across my eyes; they will not heal through any magical means. It is the price the gods forced me to pay for my powers." Adurus looks somber and maybe regretful, and you get the distinct impression he'd rather not pay such a price if he had the choice.

He continues in another moment, taking a short hop over a small crate as he says, "As for your other question, I'm affiliated with the church of Abadar, though not a practicing member. These clothes came from their church, and I haven't had any reason to buy a new set. Especially since the Abadaran colors tend to keep the cutpurses off of me." He gives a little, humourless chuckle.

At the whistle, Adurus glances back to see Therian's horse approaching his position from behind, and Adurus hustles forward a little to give the horse plenty of room. As a farmer's boy, he knows they can be quite dangerous, and anyone with a brain will stay out of their way. Adurus continues to glance back a little nervously, making sure the horse is not coming any closer to him as he walks forward.

Male Human Gunslinger 3 | HP 31/31 | AC:17, T:13, F:14 | CMD:16, CMB:+3 | Save (F+6, R+6, W+5) | Init:+4 | Hero: 1/2 | Grit 1/1 | Perc: +7 | (+2 Curse/Fear/Emotion w/gun in hand)

”Hmm, pretty,” Eldred responds to the reveal of the stranger’s features. Aasimar then…good. I can use Aasimar. Now, let’s check this guy’s salt.

”I am a Corporeal in the service of Molthune, stranger.” He takes a drag on his smoke, responding to Nathmir’s question.. ”Can’t get more ordinary than that.”

The gunslinger looks the man up and down. Then he follows the other’s gaze down to the his shoulder rig, arching an eyebrow. Know the iron do you? Keep gandering at ole Lia and I’ll make sure she meets you up close.

Clasping his hands behind his back, leaving his boar spear leaning against the wall, Eldred proceeds to casually walk a perimeter around Nathmir. Over his shoulder he notes that another pair of guardsmen are standing-to, one of them is a very aggravating war-mage with a chip on his shoulder named Folshin. The gunslinger eyes them both, especially the war-mage, shaking his head. No threat here…cool your heels.

”I knew one of your people at Ramgate,” he says, continuing his walk around Nathmir. ”Golden skin, hair like metallic fibers, eyes that never seemed to stop glowing…not quite as dynamically pretty as yours...but close.” Eldred completes his circuit and stands before the Aasimar. ”An officer and a Justicar. He looked pretty like you...even prettier when he was impaled on the antlers of a Nirmathi druid’s stag. Fool thought his heritage meant he could charge a position with my platoon in a heavy downpour.” He pauses and runs down the list of Nathmir’s pronouncement; ”Ex-service member, Aasimar, immigrant, surveyor, got a writ of property.”

The gunslinger gestures to the lines of people awaiting entrance into the city, raising his voice to give a shout. ”How many of you are surveyors?”

A number of them raise their hand, one - a dwarven merchant - even steps out of line to approach. He turns around at a look from Eldred.

Eldred nods then shouts again. ”How many with Writs of Property?”

Even more hands rise into the sky. They lower them at Eldred’s gesture.

He turns his attention back to Nathmir. ”I’ve got plenty surveyors...plenty property claims...hells bells, I’ve even got an Aasimari archer sitting pretty atop these walls. Keen eyes, your kind.”

Behind Nathmir, back towards the awaiting throngs, Eldred notes someone is getting into a shoving match with the dwarf that had stepped out of line. The gunslinger nods for two of the detachment to take care of it, specifically Folshin. ”See he gets his spot back.” he orders.

”Yes, Corporeal.” They move off, quickly being replaced by two more from the guard house.

He returns his attention to the Aasimar, seeing that they were relatively out of earshot. ”Look, I don’t care if you’re the bloody scion of Iomedae herself, I can’t let you in out of order.” He takes a long drag of his cigarette finishing it off and drops it to the ground to crush it out. ”But, if you had orders of re-enlistment., I could see that you’re taken to the recruitment office. Hells I’ll take you myself. I’ve got no use for flashy, but if you’re a cleric, the Justicars may have a use for you. Maybe you're expected by a local temple?” He scratches at his stubbled chin. ”My regiment could stand to use another cleric too. Had one until recently, got his head blown off last week.”

The gunslinger raises an eyebrow and waits.

Male Aasimar Cleric of Nethys 3 l HP: 24/24 l AC: 20 (FF: 17, Touch: 13) l Fort: +6, Ref: +5, Will: +8 l Hero: 4 l Per: +13 | Init +3

Nathmir listens politely and his smile is polite, his eyes are a different story. Their shifting colors have stopped, one black as a demon's heart the other white as moonlit star in the night sky. He responds when Corporeal Eldred is finished.

"Sir Corporeal you seem to be slightly mistaken. Mistaken on a great many things I dare say. My people and kind are hardly one and the same, otherwise why would this war exist if all humans were the same. I am sure that was not your intent. I am also sure you did not mean to imply arrogance was limited to a single race or kind."

His studying gaze bore deep into the man, not challenging but measuring in turn.

"As for myself, I have met my share of druids on the battlefield. I used this very staff empowered by my god to strike one down in fact. Granted it was some time ago."

He gripped his staff slightly, not a crack or mark to hint at weakness in it's build.

"You see the druid thought to kill those in my care. I disagreed with that, strongly if you could imagine. But no doubt you have your own tales with greater success then mine. Still I feel compelled to continue to correct these misunderstandings if you would bare it."

His polite face still firmly in place as is his eye color. He moves his other arm to resettle the shield on it.

"I am not an ex-service member, merely on leave. As I have not been discharged, even if that were the case I would have earned citizenship for my time I assure you. In such an instance I would still have the right to enter regardless of any order established. Finally that brings me to another mistake. I answered your question as to my business in the area, not my plans. I never requested admittance into the city or claimed to be entering her."

Taking a moment to allow the information to settle he looks over his shoulder at the war mage with his black eye resting on him. His polite smile wavered for a moment before coming back into place.

"As to my abilities I am indeed a priest but I would be truly surprised if a church of my god could be found in all of Molthune. I serve Nethys the all seeing, his following is few at best in this land I believe. Still if your in need of my services, despite my status of on leave. I could provide them, any sort of assignment will need to be put through the proper channels though."

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

Vincent listens as Adurus tells the story of his own magical gifts and of his affiliations, all the while maintaining a watch on the crowd from Midnight's back. If he had to pay a price for his magical gifts, what have I paid? Or, even worse, what have I yet to pay?

"Perhaps one day the gods will heal those wounds if you use your gifts in their name, and with honor."

Just then, a mountain of a soldier walks into the vicinity, creating a wake of onlookers in his path. Vincent had seen him in the city on occasion, but really, how could you miss him? He had not had the opportunity to speak to the man himself, but the rumor mill had been churning ever since he arrived. One was that he was of mixed blood, likely orc, ogre, or even giant. More far fetched was that he was in fact a herald of Gorum, here to usher in the final battles between Molthune and Nirmathas.

Regardless, what could not be denied was the fact that he was a welcome addition to the Molthune army, and would likely make quite the name for himself if he can wield that blade with any skill.

During the next few minutes, a small caravan of Molthuni laborers made their way towards the gates. A blacksmith and his slaves, if Vincent had to guess. The man riding on the wagon, the obvious Master of the troop, had some papers in his hand, likely one of the cherished permits for entering the city and setting up his supplies. They seemed to be getting bogged down in the crowd. Vincent clicked his tongue loud enough to signal to those around him he was moving. Dante wheeled his horse about, and made sure to make room for the apparent newcomer to their patrol, and they headed towards the lead wagon.

"By Abadar's name, can't you get this wagon moving any faster Daved!?!?" the man cursed, his growing frustration evident in his voice.

Vincent says to the man, "There a problem here sir?"

The man turns to Vincent, and starts to speak, but then notices that he is flanked by two men wearing tabards of House Teldas, then realizes to whom he is speaking. He quickly calms, and says, "A minor issue, m'lord. The streets, clogged as they are of people trying to force their way in, have hindered my legitimate entrance,"

Vincent extends his hand towards the smith, and asks, "Your papers, sir?"

The man hands Vincent the papers he had been holding, and Vincent looks them over to make sure everything is in order.

"Master smith Walter Keldis," Vincent looks back up to the man on the wagon, who bows his head at the reading of his name. After a quick scan, Vincent hands the papers back, and says with a smile, "It appears everything is proper. Allow me to welcome you to Braganza, sir. Lets see what we can do about this crowd."

Vincent turns and nods towards Dante, who nods in return and stands in his stirrups, then calls out loudly over the ruckus of the crowd, "Step aside! Anyone without proper papers make clear a path!"

The crowd slowly begins to relent with further prodding by Therian and Dante, and Vincent and his men move to guide the caravan towards the gates. After a couple of minutes, they manage to make it to the gates. There, a man in black robes appeared to be having some sort of disagreement with the guard at the gate. Great, some Mage is probably causing trouble. Hopefully this situation doesn't get out of hand.

Vincent rides up to the two, and waits for the robed man to finish speaking before interjecting, "Corporal, this is Walter Keldis, he appears to have everything in order to enter the city." Vincent gestures for the man to hand the guard his papers, then turns a wary eye towards the tall robed figure.

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

As Adurus walks beside the patrol, listening to Vincent, he gives a slight nod, turning Vincent's suggestion around in his head. Well, the gods won't be making a happy worshipper out of me by removing this thrice-damned curse from my eyes. Shouldn't be here to begin with, so taking it away is the least they could do. After another moment or two of pondering, Adurus states, "Might be that they'll heal me, but if that's the case I don't see why they did it in the first place." He tilts his head back, a smile creeping its way onto his face as he glances to Vincent's eyes and adds, "And please don't give me the line about the gods working in mysterious ways. I've had plenty enough of that from about every priest of Abadar who I've conversed with for the past two years." Though he delivers this with a smile, his expression goes sour once again in just a few moments, worry lines creasing his forehead and cheeks and making him look older than his seventeen years.

A few minutes later, as Vincent leads his patrol toward the caravan to defuse what might be a volatile situation, Adurus stays behind the horses and out of trouble's way, simply following closely behind and trying to act like he belongs with the group. Nevertheless, he can feel the cold stares of those standing in the line up to the gates, knowing at least some of those people think he's a brazen fellow trying to jump his way ahead of them in the line. He levels his gaze forward, keeping his resolve steeled; Adurus knows he isn't doing anything wrong at the moment, however his actions might seem to an onlooker.

Adurus stays strictly in the background while Vincent sorts out the caravan's issues and leads them to the front gate. He takes a long moment to size up the two people already conversing at the gate: one a grim guardsman with a long scar and the look of someone who is capable of killing, the other a man who appears to be flowing over with exoticism, from his mismatched eyes to the runes on his armor, and with other more subtle details in between that Adurus only registers subconsciously as something that's not quite right. The two strike Adurus as a particularly odd pair, and his mind waxes slightly poetic: They seem to be opposites of each other, one who's seen too much of this world and one who's not of it. Through a cursory glance over the scene, Adurus would guess that the guardsman is denying the mystic entry into the city; Adurus keeps his eyes and ears on the ensuing conversation, but stays to the background again, as one with no authority. He stands off to the side, his hands unconsciously clasped in front of him palms up as he observes.

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3

Zeltresh cringes as Arzazel loudly says the phrase 'want to join'. Seconds later the half-orc's sincere questions bring a smile to his wide gnomish face. "Why does anyone war? A disagreement about this god, that piece of land, some law or another." He shakes his head slowly. "If you ask either side I'm sure they can give you all the reasons in the world, and both will sound like the right reasons."

He shrugs, his shoulders broad for a gnome but barely half the size of his drinking partner. "Can't say I know what they're fighting for, and its not my fight so I can't rightly say I want to join....but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't curious. That's what being a scholar means: you want to learn, to explore, to build your mind like a soldier might build his arms." Again he gestures toward the mountain of a man patrolling the area.

"And to test my gifts in battle, to tap into that power on such a large scale without having to hold back? To go to the edge, then past the edge, to see how far I can reach and what I can learn once I'm there? That, my friend, is a rare thing. Might even be a good enough reason to pick a side and.......'join up'."

He lets out a hearty chuckle and gives his new friend a playful slap on the arm. "But if we're not careful, all this talk will attract some of that unwanted attention and recruiters will be lining up! Although I'd dare say, to look at us sitting here I'm sure they'd talk to you before they were interested in me."

"So if you aren't a scholar what are you, and what's this business you're on?"

HP: 31/31
AC 18 T 14 FF 14 / Fort +6, Ref +7, Will +1 / Percep. +7 / Init +5

Sampson wanders over to the mounted patrol and the corporal who'd saluted him a moment before, now gathered by the gate. His dead eyes and galleon-like birth cut a wide swathe through the tumbling waves of the crowd's movement. It takes him a mere half dozen steps to close the distance. He offers Vincent a quick salute and says in a gravelly voice, "Good morning gentlemen. My name is Klein, Sampson Klein. I'm on leave, and looking for something to do. Might I be of assistance here?" Sampson's polite words are at odds with everything else about him, save perhaps his perfect posture and lack of any tone to his voice. His speech is completely flat and calm, and his facial expression is locked in a facsimile of a friendly smile that doesn't budge a millimeter.

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

Vincent hadn't noticed the large man come up behind him, as he was focused on the man in black as the most likely source of trouble. Turning, he suddenly realized he was, almost literally, face to face with the giant of a man he had noted earlier. However, the Sampson's politeness and salute kept him calm enough to not appear startled. He returned the salute, and said, "I believe everything is in order here, right Corporal?"

Hardly pausing, he says to those gathered, "My name is Vincent Teldas, of House Teldas, Field-Squire of the Most Noble Order of the Exalted March. This is Therian Araxis, Dante Attilius, and Ardurus Krupt," gesturing to each as he introduces them.

During his introductions, Vincent noted the increasing gathering around the gate, as well as the couple flared tempers their approach caused as they rode up. There are two or three other Field-Squires patrolling about the center that I can see from here, so perhaps I should reinforce this position.. He then turned to the guard who had been holding the post.

"On second thought, Corporal, would you like some extra hands here at the gate?" Vincent gestures towards the crowd with his eyes as he speaks, attempting to convey to the guard his reasoning silently.

Male Human Gunslinger 3 | HP 31/31 | AC:17, T:13, F:14 | CMD:16, CMB:+3 | Save (F+6, R+6, W+5) | Init:+4 | Hero: 1/2 | Grit 1/1 | Perc: +7 | (+2 Curse/Fear/Emotion w/gun in hand)

Eldred nods satisfaction at Nathmir's response. Good, he has a mind of his own. We can use that. "I stand corrected. If you've got your leave orders, whenever you get it in your craw to head inside, you shouldn't have trouble. At least not with me."

He was about to extend an invitation for the cleric to stop by the training yard later in the week when the field-squire he'd spotted earlier rode up with his hangers-on. "Corporal, this is Walter Keldis, he appears to have everything in order to enter the city."

Eldred offers a salute. "Well color me..." The gunslinger pauses, biting his tongue. "Good to hear, sir. I'll be glad to clear him from getting stranded in line." He stubs his cigarette on the ground and accepts the papers.

Then the giant returns. "Good morning gentlemen. My name is Klein, Sampson Klein. I'm on leave, and looking for something to do. Might I be of assistance here?"

Oh boy... "I think we've got things under..."

"On second thought, Corporal, would you like some extra hands here at the gate?"

Eldred sighs. "Perhaps dispersing?" He motions to the guard house and three more armsmen emerge. "See to it."

They nod, saluting the newcomers, then moving off. After, Eldred points to the free area near the guard house. "I like to take discussions over there, sirs." He tries to not let his impatience show as he steps aside.

He looks to Nathmir. "The good cleric here was just letting me know he's been on leave. He's interested in the sites and sounds to be experienced."

Male Aasimar Cleric of Nethys 3 l HP: 24/24 l AC: 20 (FF: 17, Touch: 13) l Fort: +6, Ref: +5, Will: +8 l Hero: 4 l Per: +13 | Init +3

Moving along to the new location he looks over all the attention that he has brought. People often asked why he wore his hood so much, for reasons like this. Once it is cleared up as to his purpose he nods to each in turn. Showing no favoritism but polite respect to all.

Greetings gentlemen. How goes the day, I trust nothing more then petty thieves and heated words. Encountered a would be thief upon my way here in fact."

His eyes were back to their shifting colors as he studied each person before him closely. A dandy on horseback who looked to belong more at some noble manor then on the battlefield. A giant of a man, for he was the only one slightly taller then himself, far better built then most and clearly a warrior. Lastly among the newcomers a boy with burns and milky eyes that could still see by their movement and reactions. He thought to himself perhaps he was not such an oddity among this group.

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

Arzazel listens intently to the gnome. He still does not understand who is at war, only that there are two sides. He suspects the gnome does not know either, but maybe something was lost in translation. He likes the idea of being a scholar. He has always wanted to learn, explore, and had never imagined building his mind like his body. He wants to do that.

But then the gnome says he wants to fight, in order to go to the edge, because it is a rare thing. Maybe for gnomes. Fighting and pushing himself to the limits of his mental and physical exhaustion has been an all too common experience for Arzazel. Maybe because the gnome is small or free that fighting is rare. Arzazel suspects that the gnome has never really fought for his life before. If he had, he would not search for it unless he wants to die fighting, which he has seen before. Some pit fighters would rather die fighting than live in chains. Arzazel always preferred to live, because one never knows what can happen in the future.

And who is this ‘recruiter’? Recruiting for what? The gnome seems his attention would be unwanted, wonders Arzazel. This gnome is fascinating.

”I want to be a scholar, too. Maybe you can show me how?” Arzazel starts his reply to the gnome. Although his eyes remain on the gnome, he pays attention to his peripheral vision and hearing to detect any threats. ”Have you ever fought to the death before? The only ones, who I’ve known wanting to fight to the death, preferred death to life.”

After an uncomfortable pause, he continues, ”my business?” He shrugs. ”My master sent me with orders to meet someone who is inside the city, so I’m waiting while my caravan gets my paperwork to enter. Until then, I’m learning and exploring.” He finishes with a toothy smile.

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

As the group shuffles off toward the front of the guard house, Adurus wonders at the strange situation he finds himself in. Poor guardsman, looks like we interrupted him. Hopefully the line doesn't get too far behind where it should be because of us. He eyes the cleric and huge wall of muscle, both with an equal amount of wonder and mistrust in his eye. The cleric at least doesn't seem a military sort, but the gun-wielding guard claimed him to be just that. Perhaps he is a sort of mercenary. I'm sure they're fairly common in the Molthune military.

The other man, on the other hand, seems to be very military, with his shaved head, uniform, and "stand at attention" posture. However, Adurus sees a sort of deadness to his eyes, and wonders at how mentally "there" he is. I should stay out of his way. He looks like he could rip off my head with his hands, and is indifferent about the prospect.

Nathmir wrote:
"Greetings gentlemen. How goes the day, I trust nothing more then petty thieves and heated words. Encountered a would be thief upon my way here in fact."

Adurus looks back to the strange cleric, noting that his eyes have changed from black and white irises to multichromatic, though after observing the man for a little while this doesn't seem that odd. At this point, he finally decides to cut in and become something other than a background fixture. Moving from a little bit behind Dante's horse, Adurus comments to Nathmir, "Must have been a brave thief. You practically stink of magic." He says this matter-of-factly, enunciating quickly but levelly. He aims his milky eyes at Nathmir's to gauge his reaction to the comment.

Arcane Duelist 3| HP: 23/24 | AC: 18 (FF: 13, Touch: 13) | Fort: +2, Ref: +7, Will: +3 | Hero: 3 | Per: +5

Noting the corporal's veiled frustrations, Vincent attributed it to the growing crowd around the gate. He allows the smith's caravan to pass through, then rides to a position square in the middle of the path. As the guards move to disperse the crowd, Vincent rises in his saddle and calls out in a loud voice so as to be heard as far back as possible.

"Attention, everyone. Take note, not a single person is going to be entering Braganza without proper paperwork, be it proof of citizenship or a work permit. If you do not have either, you are in this line for naught. You are only slowing the process even more by dong so. If you attempt to slip a forgery by us, my friend here will gladly escort you to the jail to await a proper interrogation." The cool tone he uses to say the last part carries a weight of certainty.

Reigning his horse back around to the guard, he says, "I will remain here until this crowd disperses, as I must remain a visual contact with the center there, in case a squire of the March has need of my assistance."

Male Human Gunslinger 3 | HP 31/31 | AC:17, T:13, F:14 | CMD:16, CMB:+3 | Save (F+6, R+6, W+5) | Init:+4 | Hero: 1/2 | Grit 1/1 | Perc: +7 | (+2 Curse/Fear/Emotion w/gun in hand)

I'm living in a nightmare, that's what's happening. Any moment now I'm going to awaken in my rack back at Ramgate, ready to accept the next mission...ready to head out into the forest and hunt Nirmathi... He rubs thumb and forefinger deep into his tear ducts, exhaling when he realizes that no, this isn't a nightmare.

Life just isn't that fair.

Reigning his horse back around to Eldred, the nobleman says, "I will remain here until this crowd disperses, as I must remain a visual contact with the center there, in case a squire of the March has need of my assistance."

I think I'd do better if this were a herd of centaurs...then I'd at least be able to let ole Lia do the talking... He studies the nobleman, not knowing colors and how Vincent's place in the Order of the Noble Wet-nursed Soldiers Out for a Stroll fit into the rankings of the Army, Eldred considers for a moment. He's got field don't get callouses on the hands like that from just wooden sword practice...maybe he's not as candy-coated as I'm thinking...

"Very good, sir, but..." Eldred attempts to form the right words, extricating the curses he wants to use. Instead, he steps closer to the mounted nobleman and speaks quietly, the gravel of his voice carrying up to him. "Perhaps that may not be for the best. I've more men in the guard post for just such a situation."

At that moment, Eldred hears a loud voice call out from the line. "Unhand me, I know that man and he will see in my papers that I too can be excused from this ridiculous queue!"

The gunslinger glances over, knowing that it was already starting. The privileged were looking for favors now that a noble was in charge... "Sir, if you'll excuse me for a moment."

Eldred doesn't wait for a response but begins walking immediately. One of his men had a human by the arms, a man dressed in fine purples and creams with a well trimmed goatee.

"What in the pits of the nine hells is going on here?!?" The gunslinger roars. He puts thumb and forefinger to his lips and lets out an ear-piercing whistle.

Out of the guard house behind him, the remaining 14 soldiers stationed at the gate pour out and stand in a line at attention. Eldred just keeps moving, brown eyes wide with rage, his hand aching to draw his weapon and let ole Lia throw some lead.

The finely dressed man being accosted by a guardsman looks like he's about to receive a medal. He's not expecting Eldred's fury to be directed at him. The gunslinger storms up to him, motioning for the guardsman to turn the finely dressed man around. "Listen up! I don't care who you are! You're going to respect the rules or I'll have you mucking stables inside the hour. Then, when I've seen you're spine's toughened up, I'll send you to the front!! Now get back in line!!"

"Yyyees, sir...didn't mean to be any trouble..."

Eldred signals for the guardsman to release the man, who slinks back into his position. Then he addresses the line in total. "Your choice! You either wait in line with no trouble, or your cause trouble and I MAKE YOU PAY!!"

The officials at the front of the line pause their review of papers and stare. Everyone in the line stares. The gunslinger doesn't care. He spins on his heels and stalks back to the group, barking orders to the line of guardsmen as he goes. [b"Anyone causing trouble, have them flogged, thrown in the jail for a day, then escorted to the end of the line."[/b]

A person would think such a display would raise the blood pressure in Eldred, but quite the opposite happens. The gunslinger only feels relieved, like the valve release on a boiling cauldron.

To Vincent, he knuckles a salute. "I think things will get back in order, sir. No troubles here."

Eldred stands by, hands at the buckle of his belt and awaits.

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3
Arzazel wrote:
”Have you ever fought to the death before? The only ones, who I’ve known wanting to fight to the death, preferred death to life.”

The smile melts from the gnome's face, replaced by a rather serious expression. He picks up his cup in both hands and leans over it, practically talking into it, his voice taking on a much more somber tone.

"Yes, I've had to fight. More than I should have, but less than some, I suppose. And no, I didn't 'want' it." He looks up from the ale to give the halforc another wry smile. "But not everyone in the world is civilized enough to apologize when they slam into you. Some feel because they are bigger or stronger they can push you around. Never took kindly to that myself, and standing up for yourself is usually when those types of folk force you into a fight."

"Well......they learned to regret their decision. My temper has been known to flare up from time to time."

Vincent Teldas wrote:
"Attention, everyone. Take note, not a single person is going to be entering Braganza without proper paperwork, be it proof of citizenship or a work permit. If you do not have either, you are in this line for naught. You are only slowing the process even more by dong so. If you attempt to slip a forgery by us, my friend here will gladly escort you to the jail to await a proper interrogation." The cool tone he uses to say the last part carries a weight of certainty.

Hells, I haven't even gotten my forged papers yet! He looks up at Arzazel.

"Well, sounds like my search might be coming to an end. Im not lucky enough to be with a caravan, and from what that soldier just said it's not going to be as easy to get papers as I was lead to believe.

He drains the cup dry and slams it down. "So either I find work or I take my search elsewhere."

Looking around for options, the gnome considers asking some of the soldiers that are still milling around near the gate about the proper way to get a permit. He had not really considered it before but that might be his only option. Suddenly the sound of raised voices echoes across the crowd as a noble receives a serious tongue-lashing from one of the more grisly-looking soldiers.

"But perhaps not that way, eh?"

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

Arzazel listens to unexpected reaction from the little gnome. If Arzazel was learned enough, he might wonder if the gnome had a similar psychological complex as that great Chelish general Napolion. But he is but a new scholar, uneducated in history and psychology. However, he can easily sense the motive of the gnome that their companionship appears to be nearing an end. The gnome didn’t want to help him become a scholar and seems in need of a way into the city, and his social obligation of apology is complete.

In his peripheral vision, he had been watching the show at the gate. It had all the indicators for the high drama that they attempted to create in the pits, too. There was a sparkling knight on a horse clean of mud. A loud, crusty guard was surrounded by visitors wanting to enter the gate and his fellow guards who appear either bored, frustrated, or both. This could be good entertainment, cheap too.

”I’m going to get closer to that gate, so I can better hear the show. That farmer selling vegetables has some empty crates and barrels that would probably serve as fine seats for a copper. You’re welcome to come along. Otherwise our business is at a conclusion.” He smiles and offers to shake hands if the gnome does not accompany him, his basket-sized hand completely enclosing his forearm. And a ‘good-day’ would see them depart company.

He heads toward the show.

Male Aasimar Cleric of Nethys 3 l HP: 24/24 l AC: 20 (FF: 17, Touch: 13) l Fort: +6, Ref: +5, Will: +8 l Hero: 4 l Per: +13 | Init +3
Adurus Krupt wrote:
"Must have been a brave thief. You practically stink of magic."

The polite expression does not waver or the serenity in his eyes, a gaze of insight. He was not one to be provoked or drawn in to give more then he wished. Youth often colored one's perception, it seemed the boy was indeed blind if not in the way many assumed. Such could be the true reason behind his affliction.

"Only as brave as one who attempts to provoke someone who stinks of magic. Or lacks the wisdom to know better."

The refined conversational tone of the response only exposed the contrast of the words. Yet the lack of any malice or faltering smile enhanced the oddness of it all. Feeling his looks becoming to much of a distraction he replaced his hood, allowing only his eyes to be seen clearly at close range.

"Then again I could have been mistaken for a merchant I suppose."

Male Gnome Sorcerer 3

So much for subtle..........

"Are you so quick to be rid of me? I'm almost hurt." With an expression if mock pain on his face, Zeltresh grasps at his chest in a ridiculous display of overacting. "I think getting closer to the show sounds like a grand idea - and I'm not quite ready to part ways with you yet. I only wish your caravan was taking on new hands so we could spend more time together. There's no telling what we could learn!"

As the strange pair make their way over the to the barrels they find the farmer more than willing to take a copper from each of them. Based on the quality of the vegetables he is displaying it might be the only coin he makes today. Zeltresh is thankful he took Arzazel's suggestion: the view is indeed better. After only a few moments of watching the guards and merchants he catches sight of something he had missed from the ale cart. Right at the gate stood two figures not at all dressed like merchants or soldiers. In fact, from this angle they looked like they could be clergy, and they looked more like they were with the guards than waiting on line with the other supplicants.

"Be right back!" the gnome hops off his barrel perch and walks across to the two figures, getting a few incredulous looks from soldiers nearby but not wavering in his stride or his purpose. As he approaches he gets a better look: the taller one wearing the robes and armor had an other-worldly look to him, while the other one looked just about as ordinary as could be. Except for the burns of course. Zeltresh knew the second he saw the scars that they had been caused by flames and wondered what had happened.

With that final observation he arrived in front of them, and gave both a quick bow. "Well met gentlemen. Forgive me, but are you part of the watch here? My friend and I are trying to find information about a mage that I believe came here, perhaps to serve, but with the soldiers so busy tending to the crowd I wasn't sure who to ask. Mght you be able to help me?"

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

Subtlety is not a talent of Arzazel. He had never practiced it nor noticed its use. His stunned reaction to the gnome's reply causes him to delay a second before following the gnome. This gnome is fascinating.

It takes two crates cobbled together to support his weight. After he gets settled, he turns to the gnome to discuss getting a job with his caravan finding the gnome running toward the gate. Maybe he saw that person who he is searching for, he thought to himself.

He relaxes to watch the unfolding drama. First, the setting of the gate and mud. Second, the actors: knight, guards, those of the queue, and those who were not in the first three categories. Yes, he could hear much better over here. He picks up a discarded, over-ripe vegetable, wipes off the mud, and starts munching. Now, what's the plot?

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Adurus comes up with a tactful response for Nathmir, but right before he can voice it, Eldred gets a little vocal toward a man standing in line. Adurus's words die in his throat as he and almost everyone in the crowd watch the gun-wielding guard return to his post, shouting all the way. As if this wasn't enough, a gnome comes running out of the crowd up to Adurus and Nathmir, saying

Zeltresh Turenek wrote:
"Well met gentlemen. Forgive me, but are you part of the watch here? My friend and I are trying to find information about a mage that I believe came here, perhaps to serve, but with the soldiers so busy tending to the crowd I wasn't sure who to ask. Might you be able to help me?"

Adurus can do nothing but stare slack jawed at the gnome. What is wrong with this place?

Going to be moving things along tomorrow and leaving the City-Gates/Tent-City scenario behind. Feel free to continue hashing out the scene and roleplaying; I'll be moving us forward about a month's time, and giving those who haven't joined the gameplay yet opportunity to participate.

Though the initial few days prove overly taxing and trying for those tasked with keeping the peace, tensions are kept from spilling over into outright violence or rioting due to the sluggish pace of admittance into Braganza proper. As night descends upon the hastily erected tent-city outside the gates, a strange sight looms above the city from deep within its recesses. A roiling pillar of smog and smoke, lit orange by the many lights and fires of something deep within the city. A murmur ripples throughout those encamped, ranging from dismay to alarm, though the city guard allays such concerns with the admission that it is simply Rud's Foundry; a master gunsmith from Alkenstar who favors odd hours. Even so, the black mass hanging over the Foundry seems most unnatural, ignoring the wind as it climbs heavenward. At times, the silhouettes of terrifying shapes manifest and vanish just as quickly. Many bear the weight of troubled dreams on this night; dreams of fire and death—dreams of war.

Slowly but surely, the throngs of caravans and hopeful salespeople are admitted into the city, however. It would be a Building Season to remember.

//Braganza, Molthune//
     //Rainy Day, Mid-Evening, Windy; 59° F//
          //Lamashan 4, 4711 AR//

It became evident quickly the grand scale and scope of the work that would be demanded of those building yet another addition onto the city of Braganza. Already bearing a name under the direction of Prince-Archbanker Cole Ravnagask, the Keymaker's Promenade is to be the new crown jewel of Braganza. Consisting of a massive street ending in an equally impressive cul-de-sac bearing a remarkable resemblance to the holy symbol of the Abadaran faith, the district aims to serve as fitting headquarters to the burgeoning Most Noble Order of the Exalted March, as well as the new exclusive training grounds for what will become the Imperial Army's Guntank Brigade. It is here, along the clear cut swath stretching northwards out of the city that the merchants and craftsman are given leave to set up shop. Stalls, carts, wagons, and carriages line the massive thoroughfare—large enough to fit eight heavy wagons abreast—offering an overwhelming array and variety of goods, services, and vices. All under the observant eye of the Imperial Army and Most Noble Order of the Exalted March, of course.

The sheer volume of available laborers and slaves makes the daunting project seem decidedly smaller than the task's scope would imply. In scant weeks, buildings are erected and adorned in finery consistent with the Prince-Archbanker's flare for extravagance. As one might expect, a motif of keys maintains a strangehold on each and every structure that goes up in the Keymaker's Promenade. Most impressive of all is the growing skeleton of the fortress that will serve as eventual home to the Most Noble Order; the beginnings of massive pillars and a grand stair dominating what is to be the entryway into the place. The unworked loads of marble hauled in lend testament to the level of detail being afforded, a rival for even the colossal temples and palaces of Taldor's Oppara.

While there exists far too few inns and bunkhouses to accommodate the tremendous amount of newcomers and visitors to Braganza, the city's sagging populations proves a boon in such circumstances. For nominal fees, many are afforded temporary rights to derelict and otherwise uninhabited abodes. It is a far cry less hospitable than the full service of a tavern, and still a far cry more hospitable than roughing it out in the deepening chill of Fall.

Back outside of the city, the tent-city has yet to fully disperse. Those without permits or the means to afford a spot in the Promenade resign themselves to hawking wares in sight of the city's gates. In even so short a time as this Building Season has been underway, those remaining outside of the city to do business quickly earn a reputation as a nefarious-seedy sort, offering services and entertainment not often viewed fondly by the general masses. Whispers of shadow-spawned Nidalese and devil-born Chelaxian are often bandied when referring to the tent-city, though seldom with any claims or facts to justify them. The miscreants outside do little to earn the ire of the guard, so their presence is as of yet still tolerated.

Currently, the bulk of the work on the Promenade has been finished. While the city walls are still lacking, and the Order's new headquarters will likely require several years to finish fully, buildings of dizzying height now line the Keymaker's Promenade from one end to another. Many will no doubt serve as home to the servicemen and noblemen belonging to the Guntanks or Most Noble Order, though there seem to be an inordinate amount of inns, taverns, and feast halls to accompany the dwellings. This year, the conclusion of Building Season is accompanied by the annual celebration of Market's Door, and the Promenade aims to provide no shortage of banquets and feasts to celebrate the occasion. All toil and laborer is suspended for the entire event, while all find occasion to enjoy the bounties of what has proven to be an unusually plentiful yield.

And this is where we'll pick things back up. By sheer happenstance and convenience, all of the PC-hopefuls have managed to find themselves in the same vicinity. The Promenade's thoroughfare has been lined with an impressive array of feast tables, each protected by its own white and gold pavilion tent owing to the weather's failure to cooperate. Those belonging to any organization are given leave on this day, and are ordered to enjoy themselves for the night—as well as make sure those having drunk too deeply don't do anything drastic. Prince-Archbanker Cole Ravnagask and his brother, Bailiff Terendar Ravnagask, are expected to publicly bless the banquets, though they are doing so roughly eight blocks away from where your tent is situated and will not figure into the scenario. Your tent and feast table is playing host to a full fifty feasters, plus the occasional wandering straggler or passerby. (As such, you should note that these tents are considerably larger than the standard variety)

Half-orc Brute | HP 31/31 | 2+1 Hero Points
AC 18/14/14 | Fort +6 Ref +7 Will +4 | Init. +3 | Perception +8, 60-ft. Darkvision | CM +8/21 (+3 vs dirty trick)

Arzazel had a big month: new city, new work, and new life. Without any problems, he joined his caravan entering the city through the gate that he had watched that first day. The knight and crusty guard had been replaced, and the show continued.

The caravan met a Bronze Agent inside the city and was directed to their prime spot along the new Keymaker's Promenade. The agent then escorted Arzazel to the office of the Silver Agent. Along the way, it became clear that his previous life as a slave was known, as the agent tested Arzazel’s temper with comments. The Silver introduced Arzazel to Benot, his fellow Bronze Agent, and explained that the two were to run the Consortium’s business of bringing supplies into Braganza. This was Benot’s fifth building season, so he knew the business. Arzazel accepted his role as a scholar to learn and explore the business.

Most of the month passed much like the previous year with his master. Arzazel accompanied Benot throughout the day and night arranging business. Benot explained some of deals but not all. Arzazel looked intimidating and only had to defend Benot once. Arzazel stayed in a room of Benot’s suite, ate what he was given, and never handled the money. While he never feared the lash, his movements were controlled as they were with Thelton. Benot treated him like a guard dog, a very big one, and mostly ignored his presence while conducting business.

Yesterday morning at the weekly meeting with the Silver, Benot was given a task and departed without Arzazel. The Silver then began to methodically question Arzazel about his month’s activities. Arzazel explained what he saw and did not see, who he met, and with whom Benot spoke privately. Some people would have called this an interrogation, but Arzazel had experienced torture. This was a business conversation with food and beverages. Half way through the meeting, Arzazel finally sensed what was happening. Benot had been skimming profits. Arzazel had been summoned to Braganza to observe and confirm the Silver’s suspicions. As a former slave, Benot felt no competition or threat. At the end, Arzazel received his finally orders for Benot.

Yesterday evening after supper, Arzazel caught Benot unaware preparing for his end of building season celebration. When he was done, he dumped the bags of Benot into the pen of pigs behind their building. It took him most of the night to clean himself and the suite. In the morning, he delivered the bronze medallion and several ledgers to the Silver. Arzazel was thanked and given the rest of the day off to relax. Tomorrow, they would meet to discuss his new responsibilities.

He wanders the new Keymaker's Promenade sampling the exotics. He nods to the merchants that he knew and shrugs when asked of Benot’s whereabouts. While he could have felt something horrible about Benot’s death, the sense of freedom overwhelms Arzazel.

For supper, he finds a good seat under one of the white and gold pavilion tents, so he can watch the promenade as well as his pavilion. Ordering for himself, his food and beer tastes a bit better than normal. After dessert, he orders another tankard of beer to nurse through the evening with satisfied smile on his face.

Male Half-orc Fighter 1 (Mobile Fighter), Monk 0 (Monk of the Sacred Mountain)
HP: 13, Initiative: +2, Perception:+2 , Sense motive: +1, AC: 20 (T: 13, FF: 18), CMD: 18, Fort: 5, Refl: 3, Will: 2

Garroth stood with arms crossed behind the feasting guests, surveying the assembled throng with detached interest, finding nothing suspicious to grab his attention. That was usually how it went, but the situation could change at a moments notice, tempers flaring suddenly as they did. He knew all too well how easy it was to get riled up at the wrong words said across a table. Still, he had his eyes on the ones that could be trouble, and none of them seemed like they were going to for the moment.

Casting a glance down at his seated employer in front of him, Garroth had to fight the urge to sneer at the back of the mans head, a fat slob of a merchant. He much preferred his employers to at least be fit enough to help him help themselves, but the pay had been too good to pass up.

Turning to look at his bodyguard, the fat merchant waved a half eaten cut of pork at the end of his fork, smiling widely. Already his cheeks were flush from food and drink, and his personality had changed considerably.

"Why so serious my friend, have some food and drink why don't you." Twirling the fork in circles, he flung the meat at Garroth, clearly intending to toss it into Garroths hands, but managing only to hit his shoulder. It clung him for a second before sliding down and dropping to the floor "Oh my, seems I'm a bit tipsy doesn't it?" the man sniggered, shielding his mouth with his hand as he struggled to choke down a sputtering laugh.

Garroth looked down at the fallen meat, one eyebrow raised "You don't pay me to eat or drink, but to watch your bloated rear." he growled raising his eyes to meet his employers gaze and continuing in an almost cheerful tone "But I guess if you insist upon it, I shall have to partake."

The merchant squinted at Garroth, addled brain seemingly trying in vain to inform him of the insult. To Garroths surprise he laughed, nodding his head with chin jiggling vigor and motioning to a vacant chair "Of course I insist, no one should work on a day like this, sit, eat!"

Garroth could hardly believe what he was hearing, he had spoken in jest, but he wasn't about to pass up the prospect of getting paid to enjoy himself. Still he had to give the man another chance to change his mind. Moving to the empty seat, he remarked jovially "Very well then, just don't get mad if someone manages to slip a knife in you while I'm doing so." The merchant immediately broke into a roaring laugh, toasting the other patrons at the table who joined his laughter with raised mugs.

Emptying a mug of ale in a single drought, Garroth shook his head with a chuckle, before reaching for another.

Male Human Oracle 1 | 19/19 hp | AC 20 (ff 18, t 12) | F +1, R +3, W +4 | 2 Hero Pts | Per +1 | Init +2

Adurus finds himself enjoying this strange city's massive upswing of activity, taking time out of his schedule to move about the streets of the Key Promenade throughout the month and observe the frantic activity. Things are looking good for Adurus; ever since his chance encounter with Vincent, he has been enlisted as a recruit into the Most Holy Order of the Noble March. He drilled combat and marching, was given lessons on the patron gods of the order (whom Adurus already knew much about), and learned how to better address those of higher station or birth.

His combat drills were mostly theoretical for this first month, going through motions of attacking and defending in slow motion as the instructors focused on correcting poor foot placement or grip on the weapon. A few times Adurus was afforded the opportunity to spar with wooden swords. Though such standoffs gave him unpleasant flashbacks to the awakening of his powers, Adurus kept himself in check, fighting very conservatively and losing his duels graciously. He made sure to keep himself emotionally detached form these sparring matches, thinking of the soft and deliberate cadence of Novennia's lecturing voice in order to calm himself down.

When his training reached the study of the gods, Adurus became a little nostalgic for his days in his cell of the Golden Glory. Despite having his freedom taken away, it was a fairly comfortable way of life, and Novennia's guidance had been very pleasant for him. Twice, after his lessons, Adurus walked over to the Golden Glory and met with Novennia and some of the other clergy members. He talked at length with her especially, recounting some of his experiences since leaving the church and hearing for the first time of her own life inside the Glory. For although she was instructed to remain professional while he was kept in the church, she had no such obligation now, and she admitted to Adurus that she had enjoyed his friendship while tutoring him those few years.

This bit is in provided Vincent is okay with it. Adurus's lessons in manners took a little more time than his other lessons to sink in; he occasionally went to Vincent, who was fast becoming a professional friend, to help him in remembering such things. In return Adurus ran errands for Vincent, or helped specific other recruits that needed assistance in their religious studies. Although Adurus liked Vincent, he was aware of the discrepancy in their station, and in public maintained polite subservience as one might expect of him.

At the end of his month of activity came the Market's Door, a citywide celebration marking the end of the Building Season which covered the newly built streets in massive tents containing temporary feast halls and huge amounts of food. Though the weather turned to light rain, nobody let that stop them from enjoying the festivities, cloaks and even a few parasols being brought out as protection against Gozreh's interference. Adurus entered one of the massive feast tents and claimed a seat, wasting no time in finding himself a plate and some food to adorn it. As he tucked himself into a pile of mashed potatoes with pork gravy, Adurus glanced about at the other guests at the table, spotting a few familiar faces. Vincent in particular stands out, and Adurus picks up his meal and changes seats to sit beside him. As he plops down, Adurus warmly smiles Vincent's way, saying to him, "Now, if the city were this way all the time, I think this is a place I could really get used to." He stabs his spoon into his meal to emphasize his point.

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