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Thread: Warm Strangers - A Tavern Thread (OPEN)

  1. #1
    Some Filthy Casual

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    Lye's Avatar

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    Warm Strangers - A Tavern Thread (OPEN)

    Rules:

    All players will write their characters at level 1. Keep the abilities to a minimum. This takes place some several years ago, but new and old writers are welcome.

    The setting is a small border village just to the north of the dagger peaks which divide Alerar and Salvar. No more than an inn, tavern downstairs, and a few scattered homesteads for some lumberjacks, miners, and farmers. It is winter and even the green lands of southern Salvar are blanketed in a fresh snowfall.

    For the vets, you can make this as canon or non-canon as you like. Use it as an opportunity to explore your character's or and NPC's early years.
    Many years ago, the Terror of the North wore a different face and a different name. His cold, chiseled features were soft and the serpentine jade eyes were wide. The waterfall of silken white hair was shorter then, and worn up toward the sky like many small spires of ice. The uniform of an Aleran soldier draped over his body and the thick wool of a winter cloak hung off his shoulders. The young man, just barely a man by definition, carried a large, broad sword upon his back. The crest of the military showed barely on the worn leather of its sheath.

    Yes, a long time ago, the murderous scourge was just a boy -- a fresh recruit of the military with bright aspirations for the future. Beside him sat another youth near equal in age. This man wore his deep walnut hair slicked back with just a few rogue strands left to tease at his brow. His eyes seemed much less kind, but held a deep determination in their gaze. This man, though more intimidating than his white crested counterpart, cracked a warm smile at his friend's poorly told joke. He brought the rim of a frothy ale to his lips and drew a mouthful of its crisp, bitter refreshment.

    "Dude, I'm telling you, one night with a busty broad and maybe that one eyed bastard of a sergeant might give us a decent detail." Lye chuckled after rapping his brother in arms on the back, nearly causing him to choke on his ale. The teen brought his glass up as if to toast and took a deep swig.

    "Perhaps if you took your station more seriously, Lye..." Seth trailed on as he dried the corners of his lips.

    "What the hell does that mean?! I do take this seriously!" Lye's outburst caused his colleague to chuckle.

    "Your swordsmanship says otherwise," Seth teased with a tap against the sword's hilt that propped beside his chair.

    "Bullshit. Seth, we're 7-6. You just got lucky with that last match."

    "Dunno, looked to me like you can't watch your footing in the snow..."

    Lye grumbled. His rival made a valid point and he choked on the words for a retort. Instead, Lye settled into his chair, cradled his beer, and drowned out his defeat with a few extra gulps of swill.

    "I hate you, you know that?" Lye spat in a low, whimpering tone.

    "No you don't, you're just a poor loser." Seth chuckled again. He lifted his glass and tapped the bottom of his against the rim of Lye's.

    "To next match, huh?"

    "Yeah..."

    And the two took another swig.

  2. #2
    Shattered heart and Soul

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    Amari's Avatar

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    Several years ago was not a pleasant time for Amari, she was away from her family and the insidous plans her brother had laid out for her. Away from his control and sigils and schemes - but as they say... out of the frying pan and into the fire. Swooped up by bandits; battered and bruised, but no amount of that could quell her ferocious spirit. Not even a short stint in the house of Sin where she was subject to Aurelianus' twisted sense of justice.

    Not every bandit is cruel, and she had found people she could almost trust there, people who kept an eye on her and ensured she was fed. Ensured she was not 'touched' men who had no place in the clan and yet they stayed be it for greed or for survival.

    Away from Salvar and on a transport mission the three find themselves taking reprieve in a bar, at just 20 years old Amari was still very much an outspoken, loud, crass and caring individual.



    Thom ran a hand through his matted black hair as he sighed. "I know you don't like places like this, but we gotta look like we're at least attempting to barter you off." The dark look Amari shot him caused the man to shake his head. "I know. I don't agree with it either."

    The door to the tavern opened and three entered, passing a few tables to find an empty one. Thom, Amari, and Jack. Thom found a somewhat empty space and squeezed himself into it before gesturing for the others to take a seat. "Sit." Jack took a seat opposite his comrade, leaving a spare seat between them for Amari to join but the obstinate redhead refused. She stood still as her emerald and golden gaze challenged their offer.

    "The hell is the point of this? I'm still just your prisoner." She spat under her breath.

    The two men exchanged glances. Thom rose his blue eyes to her, "You could leave and neither Jack or I would stop you. We're cartin' goods through to Alerar. Realistically... this would be your most opportune time. But members of our..." He cleared his throat. "Group are all over the place and we don't know the people here. You could be picked up and whisked away."

    "It's fuckin' better than dealing with all of you!"

    "Yeh, are you still going to say that if a group of slavers pick you up?" Jack interjected. His green eyes narrowed as he leaned on the back two legs of his chair. "Look at you." He gestured toward her. Normally Amari would be dressed in rags, barely enough to stave away the cold from Salvar, but today she wore a very old and faded dress that was once a brilliant red, now it was a sickly blushed hue. Her hair hung wild and untamed just under her shoulders, the dress was a size too small for her and it showed. "Red hair, crazy ass glowing eyes. Let's ignore that you look like yer about to explode outta that dress. Yer a beacon. Sure its hell, but at least...."

    His hand lowered to the table and he gave a weary sigh. "At least we can keep an eye out for you... I really...I really don't want a repeat of what happened in that house of Sin. Please Amari. Sit."


    Amari took a step away from the two. Just the mention of that demon made her feel nauseous and sickly. The things she saw...the things she felt the pain... "Don't MENTION that name!" Amari snapped, louder than intended. Already a few patrons had their eyes on her. She was, as usual, causing a scene. "You have NO idea what I went through!" She shook her head and approached the table only to slam her palms down hard on it. "NO idea what that sick fuck is capable of!"

    She jumped as a hand reached out to rest on top of hers. It was Thom. "Amari." he implored as his eyes glanced over some of the bruises that still blotched her bare shoulders. "Please."

    Amari sighed as she hung her head. She was trapped. She couldn't run away. Someone else would just find her, she shuddered to think what would happen if she were to be thrown back into the house of sin again. "Yeh. Alright." Amari shifted and took her seat, visibly drained. "I just...want to be free of all this. I want to stand on my own two feet. Fight my own battles." Her eyes slowly breezed the tavern, a few old men drinking at the bar. Soldiers enjoying an ale close to them... women of the night in the corner.

    "I want to walk free, and have the tools to do that. To take what I want when I need it." She glanced to the side. "Without sacrificing my humanity or who I am. Is that such a farfetched dream?"

    Thom was scratching the stubble on his chin, his eyes on the soldiers before them. "Maybe not Amari...maybe not."
    Last edited by Amari; 10-10-2017 at 12:01 AM.

  3. #3
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    Philomel's Avatar

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    [[NON-CANON]]

    She sauntered into the room, high spirits and a beaming smile on her face. This was her twentieth year - a year to celebrate, in her mind. After all, she had just begun her life, in a way. Her mother and her had broke from the brothel known as the 'Crouching Tiger', where Philomel had ended the life of the ruling pimp, a man who had cared nothing for when her mother was raped. Now the Crouching Tiger was a place run by the good woman Gosling, a whore with a good spirit and strong heart, but the important thing was that Philomel was free. Free to live her life as she wanted.

    This was a time, after all, before the words 'Gilded Lily's were ever a thought. This was a time before a goddess called Drys decided to bestow her blessings on a holy faun. This was a time before power, before Shinsou vaan Osiris, before a love triangle called Astarelle and Jensen, before even Vaeron. This was a time without war, without a daughter and without anyone truly strong to call hers. This was just Philomel van der Aart and her small fox companion Veridian. This was her, fresh-faced assassin, claiming her ranks in the world of Althanas.

    "Mr Ulroke!" she beamed and strutted over to the table where he sat. "Remember me? We met at that place, at that time?"

    However, it was not a time before she was sexy, because that time has never existed.

    The faun's eyes drifted from person to person around the table, Lye, whom she had only seen from afar and heard of really and, the more-or-less-a-stranger Seth Orlouge, who all regarded her with some form of surprise. Philomel simply smiled and waved a hand to greet them all. Reaching behind her she found a stool and she pulled it under her gorgeous butt. She threw a wink at a barman, and sat down with a tinkle of bells. In her ears were looped as many chains and dangling icons as possible, her hair was a thick mass of dreadlocks. She was proud, strong and determined and though knew herself to be lesser than some, she was there. With them.

    She was one of them.

    A small grumble from the ground and the scraping of glass on wood. Glancing down Philomel saw a small fox nosing over a beer to her.

    "Oh thank you darling," she spoke with delight. Leaning down she picked up the beer, then the fox, and plopped both on the table without any announcement.

    "I'm Philomel, but call me Phi," she grinned and gestured at the fox. "This is Veridian. We're ... Pretty new to this area. Cold isn't it?"

    And she sipped her beer with extraordinary grace.
    Last edited by Philomel; 10-10-2017 at 02:27 PM.

  4. #4
    Apathy Elemental

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    Briarheart's Avatar

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    A long time ago, back 'fore she was a succulentwaifu--
    "There you are," the young woman with her golden hair hastily pulled back in a messy bun cooed as a warm energy emanated from her palms.

    After she was finished, the man across the table from her inspected his hand. The cuts from where the mug shattered across his knuckles had closed, leaving behind just the tiniest of scars. "Thank you kindly, ma'am," he said with a polite nod. "How much do I owe you for the trouble?"

    "Oh, that won't be necessary," she said with a smile. "Just happy that I could help you. It would go against my order's creed to sit by idly while you bled all over the place."

    "Just be careful with that magic," he warned. "The Sway has eyes everywhere. You wouldn't want to run afoul of them."

    "So I have been told."

    The patron shrugged, the tone of his voice becoming more jovial. "If you won't take gold, at least allow me to buy you a drink!"

    The woman considered this for a moment. "I reckon that I am a bit thirsty," she agreed.

    Standing up, the man smiled. "What's your pleasure?"

    "Something that isn't this 'watered-down piss' I hear so many others talk about," the woman said with a smirk.

    The woman's new friend hesitated for a moment before turning towards the bar. "I don't think I caught your name, lass."

    "Perri. Perri Svensdotter."

  5. #5
    Some Filthy Casual

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    Lye's Avatar

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    The name rang out from a voice unfamiliar, but not exactly foreign. Both recruits spun their heads about to the source and found their gaze tumble and fall over the curves of a young faun. Lye pursed his lips together for an involuntary whistle just moments before Seth planted a firm boot into the thin skin of his shin. The teen winced all while the young woman planted her taut, fuzzy arse between them.

    "You know this girl?" Seth asked with a less than tactful thumb jutted in her direction. Lye grunted through clenched teeth.

    "Not quite," he managed with a strain. "You think I'd remember that -- hnnghk!"

    The same boot found the same shin in the same place.

    "Mother fu--"

    "Nice to meet you, Philomel," Seth continued and avoided the nickname. His eyes remained firm and stoic, befitting of a future soldier of the Aleran flag. "Excuse my friend here; he's an idiot."

    "Hey!" The shimmer of tears crested at Lye's verdant glare. His pained malice did not linger for long as his attentions drifted to the red-headed ragamuffin that entered the establishment. To her left and right, two unsavory fellows.

    "My name is Seth Orlouge, a pleasure to meet you." Then a fox was introduced to the fray via unceremonious plantation upon the table. "...and your... pet fox?"

    Meanwhile, Lye traced the newcomer to a table, where the makings of a less than cordial conversation ensued. His brows scrunched over watery eyes as his curiosity piqued. Whatever the situation, she seemed less than thrilled to be with the two. Perhaps an unwilling servant of the night? Or maybe the two ruffians liked a little spitfire in their bed sheets? Despite the ominous feeling in his gut, he let it be. They were here to look for any agents of Raiaera that might be trying to sneak across the Salvic-Aleran passage. Not pry into other's affairs.

    "They say the winter is supposed to be especially harsh this year," Seth continued. "You look... hardly prepared." He nudged his mug of ale toward the faun's ensemble.

    Like the young dog he was, Lye caught glimpse of yet another female in his quest to rejoin the conversation. This one blonde, smiling, and outright attractive. The youth's green eyes shot wide as if seeing a custom forged adamantium blade for the first time.

    "And uh..." This time, the kick went awry, striking his chair instead of his shin. It jostled Lye's attention back on target and popped the little, lewd day dream forming in his head. "You said you know Lye from somewhere?"

    "What? Who? Oh! Yes." A bit of ale spilled from his mug as he staggered to collect himself. Just a dribble fell from the table and onto his tunic before he swiped away the excess that nearly made it look like he pissed himself. "Yeah, sorry. You said we've met before?"

  6. #6
    Super Moderator

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    Philomel's Avatar

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    Philomel smiled brilliantly from one man to the other, swinging her ponytail back over her shoulder. Beside her Veridian stared at the man who had called him a pet before hissing and settling down into a seated crouch. Steadily, his tail began to twitch from left to right, beating the dust to the floor.

    I do not like.

    "Veridian here is my dear friend more than a pet," she said lightly, cupping a hand around the back of the earth spirit. "We met when I was a little younger. Now we travel, more or less."

    She looked over to Lichensith, admiring his white hair in the night light streaming from a window. She ignored a slight interruption from behind them as people ... Talked to one another. A red-headed passed in the corner of her view and another woman leaned on the bar.

    "You probably forgot. We ran in to each other back in a small town south. Pretty much for five minutes. Veridian here was an idiot, ran out in front of your horse ..." her breasts heaved up and down in a small sigh. "Well, I remember, but it was not significant."

    She looked between the men again, her tapered ears flicking a little. Taking up her brown beer she took a long drink. Twisting slightly she let the side of her sword untuck from its current uncomfortable position, sticking up by her leg awkwardly, beside her and scrape to the floor. It thudded quietly and she grinned further.

    "For being not cold, I left a cloak near a the door. And pleasure to meet you ... Seth," she held out a hand to the other young man. "Very pleased. Though I think maybe I interrupted something I should not have."

    "Am I interrupting? Shall I go?"
    Last edited by Philomel; 10-11-2017 at 04:20 AM.

  7. #7
    Shattered heart and Soul

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    Amari's Avatar

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    Thom sneezed, again, again, and again.

    "Ugh..." Thom wiped the underside of his nose with his index finger. Sniffling. "Must be allergic to that fuckin' faun and the fox." He muttered less than amused.

    "I thought you were allergic to dogs?" Asked Jack.

    Thom shrugged, "Maybe they have the same sort o' fur. Fucked if I know. Just glad she didn't join our table. Seems the sort to just shove 'er head where it don't belong."

    "Like me?" Amari asked, tilting her head to the side to get a better look of the trio. Thom was right. It appeared that she had haughtily sat down at the table assuming they were friends. But... the way she was dressed... and the two men were soldiers. "Or maybe..." Amari pursed her lips as she pushed down the less than pleasant memories that surfaced. "She's just working I mean, why else would she wear nothing this close to Salvar?" Her eyes shifted back to the men who were both her captors and in a strange way, her friends. "If that the case, why judge her for making coin?"

    "Heh. Yeh Thom, don't be such a dick." Jack said with a elbow jabbing into Thom's side.

    "I'm not!" Thom hissed. "I just don't get it. I mean, all that fur?"

    "Not everyone has an allergy. Maybe she has a specific clientele that are into that sort of thing?" Jack asked as he placed an elbow on the table. He rested his chin in the palm of his hand and with his free arm waved Thom off. "Be a darl' and fetch us drinks. Amari, did you want anything let us treat you a bit before returning to that hellhole."

    "What?" Despite the two always being amicable to her, and always looking out for her, she still somehow did not expect them to offer a drink. The smell of ale made her feel ill. The halls of the hideout were practically soaked in it and she on more than one occassion had also been doused in the stuff. Amari closed her eyes and took a long deep breath. Recalling the days back in her home, back in the estate. She'd often find comfort in a small glass of - "Raiarian Wine. Red." She said.

    "You still have those expensive noble tastes." Thom muttered as he noisily pushed himself out of his seat and headed to the bar, muttering under his breath.

    Now alone with Amari Jack cleared his throat. Snapping the redheads attention to him. "We need to talk."

    "We are talking."

    "That's not what I- No. Amari. Hold your damn tongue and listen for a moment." She offered him a challenging glare but for the most part, remained silent. "Look. Thom and I... we were fine with being cut-throats. We aren't good people. We kill, we steal, we extort, but that's about the short of it. We don't exactly agree with killin' mothers or kids. You know we don't find our fancy with the escorts."

    "I don't need your life story, Jack."

    The man sighed and rose a hand to rub his temples. This was her being civil woman had quite the tongue on her. It was a damn near miracle that it hadn't been completely beaten out of her yet. "That's not the point. Look. Gabe tried to get into the Slaver business with the whole house o' Sin thing." Jack ignored Amari's immediate knee-jerk reaction to the words. "The loss of his men won't stop him. He'd want to get into it again. We don't like that, but we can't exactly leave. In a sense, the members of the group are just as much prisoners of the place as you."

    Amari scoffed. "Yeh, except you get to fuckin' eat and drink and have warm clothes and -"

    "Amari. Please." Jack hissed in a lowered tone. "We want out, but we want to make sure you are safe first." He lifted his head to gesture at the soldiers on the other table. "I noticed Thom staring those soldiers down. I bet he had half a mind to send you off with them. But he has his reservations. The arrival of the whore probably gave him ample reason not to."

    Amari scrunched up her face. "Why? Who cares if they pay for sex."

    "You're real naieve you know that?" Amari gave him a blank stare. Jack sighed again, wishing Thom would come back. What was taking him so damn long anyway? "You're a redhead, a virgin, and you wave your hands and magic shit happens. You're practically a glowing beacon for disaster."

    "Oh..."


    Meanwhile at the bar....

    Thom had ordered his drinks, and was assured the barmaid would bring them over. He paused when his sights landed on a golden haired lass. It wasn't so much her look that attracted him, but her skills.

    Magic...

    The young blonde had magic. Mighty dangerous to use it around these parts. Still. He ran a hand through his hair and approached. "Aye, Miss...." he paused catching the tail end of the conversation. Perri, was it. Come. Join us." Already the gears were turning in Thoms head. Amari was difficult to deal with, but if she had someone to talk to, someone she could relax around and heavens above, actually befriend. It'd do the woman a world of good.

    The blonde opened her mouth to speak but Thom spoke over her, resting a hand on her back as he guided her back to his table. "I'll buy you her next drink. Just sit. Join us." He approached the table and sat her in his old seat next to Amari before grabbing the last free chair at their table next to Jack. He gave Jack a hearty slap on the back, his hand lingering for a few moments. "Aye, Jack. Amari. This is Perri."

    Both Amari and Jack looked at Thom in alarm but Thom simply shrugged his shoulders and leaned casually back in his chair. "Hey. Amari." He gestured toward the small centrepiece on the table. Wilted flowers in an old, dirty glass. "Be a doll and do your thing."

    "You're not the fuckin' boss of-"

    "Perri wants to see." Thom said simply, his eyes studying the blonde for her reaction.

    With a sigh followed by a nervous glance around the bar. No one was watching...good Amari lifted her hand and with an awkward gesture some of the flowers sprung back to life, blooming in a myriad of white and gold. The others, they were torn apart and flung across the room. Amari quickly hid her hand underneath the table. She had never gotten the chance to do much of anything with her strange ability. "Look I-"

    Thom slapped the table with a mighty laugh, clearly trying to ease the tension or divert attention from her. "JACK! Whatta Joke!"

    Jake hadn't said a damn word.
    Last edited by Amari; 10-11-2017 at 02:00 AM.

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