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A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Sun Jul 01, 2018 12:51 am

Dungard was a quiet town in the Free Lands, too small to attract attention from either the Conclave or the Alliance. That was what Kairi Thorne liked about it. She used it as base of operations in the Free Lands, both because of its anonymity and its relatively central location. Kairi sat at a table in the Purple Wyrm Inn, a small and dimly lit tavern in the center of town. Kairi stayed at this inn when in town, and also used it to meet with contacts in order to share news and plan schemes. It was the second reason that brought her here tonight. Kairi was meeting with Shran, an Eldross agent, to discuss some information that he had uncovered. Shran was recruited by the Order of the Sun to monitor things in the Free Lands, and alert them of any opportunity to do some good in the troubled region. As an Eldross, one of the few left after the dragon Onyxus devastated Harodiel, Shran's skills and expertise were highly sought after, both as an information gatherer and scout.

The Eldross' green eyes glinted in the light from the fire in the hearth across the room as he passed a parchment to Kairi. It was a message from a Dying Suns camp to a superior. Kairi read the message as Shran explained. "I intercepted this message as it left the Khudan Forest. In quite a hurry, too." Kairi's eyes widened when she saw who it was intended for. "It is addressed to Thassa?" Shran nodded stoically. "Indeed. I spared the messenger when he told me his destination." Thassa was a high-ranking leader of the Dying Suns, a mercenary organisation that had ties to the Red Fang. Kairi had been searching for Thassa for some time now, and it appeared she finally had a lead. Kairi pulled out a map of the Free Lands and Shran made a mark on it. Kairi stared in confusion. "But there's nothing there?" Shran shook his head. "So we thought. I decided to take a look before reporting in, just in case it was a dead lead. But there is a Dying Suns installation there. It doesn't look that large, but there were several passages that led underground. If I had to guess, I would say most of it is underground." Kairi studied her soup as she pondered the information Shran had provided.

"Then that is the target. I will move tomorrow." Shran put his hand on Kairi's arm in warning. "Kairi. I know you are a mighty warrior, but for a mission of this scale, even you will need help." Kairi sighed. The Eldross was right. "What did you have in mind?" Shran's animal companion, a lynx called Inara, purred gently at his feet as he produced another small parchment and presented it. "I have been recalled for another mission, but I have organised a meeting for you to meet with some potential allies. It seems the messenger was in a hurry because his camp had been attacked. I believe you are familiar with the granddaughters of Dalrodir Shor and Ren the Hornless?" Kairi nodded and smiled. "I should have known." Shran nodded with a smirk. "It seems they are also tracking Thassa, and they are travelling with an Asentari who seems to have a stake in all of this as well." Kairi showed interest at that. "An Asentari?" Shran nodded. "Yes. Rex von Broven. He seems an adept fighter, and as Dalrodir Shor once said, "the enemy of my enemy is my friend". You are to meet them at the Eldritch Moon Inn in Zendar at noon tomorrow." Kairi nodded as Shran stood, wrapping his cloak around him. "I wish you good luck, Kairi. I believe you will see this out." Kairi stood and bowed politely. "Thank you for everything Shran. Safe travels to you and Inara." Inara wandered over and brushed off Kairi's leg before leaping into Shran's hand as a staff. The Eldross bowed in return and left. Kairi returned to her soup.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Vala on Sun Jul 01, 2018 5:01 am

After the eldross left a suave, weasely looking man seated in a booth next to the bar stood up and approached Kairi. He sat down across from her and flashed her a winning smile. "The name's Kraf. I've seen you here before, right?" He said to her. "Can I buy you something to drink, lady?" He asked her. He watched her intently. "You know, your quite beautiful. I have an artist freind who would be interested in capturing your likeness if you happen to be looking for work." when the door to the Tavern burst open and a young looking girl with dark skin and red eyes stalked in. She had two swords strapped to her left side, and long black hair that was brushed back from her face. There was blood splattered across clothes, hands and face. Her face was fury, her eyes burned with fire. Kraf spotted her as she approached, and tried to keep his smile, but it wavered. "Mercy, your alive." He said meekly.

Bethany grabbed Kraf from the booth, not paying any mind to Kairi, and dragged him away. She tosed him back in next to his two freinds who had tried to stand, but she pushed the closest one back down. She kept her voice low as she spoke. "No shit you little fucking rat. Where in Na'Kora's Forge are those girls?!" She said fiercely. "What do you mean? They're free. We let them go as planned. Listen Harold betrayed us. I thought-" She slapped the table to shut him up. "Do I look fucking stupid to you Kraf? You hire me to 'Save' those girls form Red Fang slavers, then while i'm fighting, half your men disappear with them and the others turn on me. You took them! Where are they!" She shouted. "I swear-"

She grabbed him by the collar, pulled him from the booth and flung him onto the ground. One of his freinds tried to stand up, but Bethany pulled her gladius straight up and drove the pommel into his teeth. He fell back into the booth and landed on the second man, blocking him from advancing. She spun the blade and rested the razor sharp tip against Kraf's chest as he tried to sit up. "You will tell me where those slaves are or I will start hacking off bits! Do you think anyone here can stop me?" She shouted. "Harold and the others certainly tried, but if that wasn't enough do you really think a few old drunks can save you?!" He started to cower, but opened his mouth to speak. If it wasn't something worth hearing, she was going to start cutting.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Tue Jul 03, 2018 6:56 am

Kairi eyed the stranger suspiciously as he sat down in the seat Shran had just vacated. He put on his winning-est smile and layered on all the charm. Kairi sighed in exasperation. She was never one to tout her own beauty, but she was forced to acknowledge that her appearance tended to attract attention, often the wrong attention. She glared at the man and was just about to respond, when a young woman in bloodstained attire stormed in and yanked the man away. Kairi shook her head and continued her soup, keeping an ear out for trouble.

The new girl, apparently named Mercy, began to forcefully interrogate the man, quietly at first, then loudly. She mentioned something about slave girls. Kairi wondered if this Bethany was some sort of dealer, or if she was trying to rescue them. Kairi decided to investigate when Bethany threatened the man with severe harm. She rose from her table and walked over to the commotion, hand ready on the weapon hilt.

"Excuse me? I'm not sure exactly what's going on, but your noise level means I can't help help but overhear you mention slave girls. Unless you intend to inform me the location of these girls, I'm going to have to make a disturbance of my own." She glared at the two miscreants. "So what will it be?"


Last edited by Orgoth on Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:23 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Vala on Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:11 am

Bethany was about to take a peice of finger off of Kraf, when the woman who he'd been talking to stood up and began to get involved. "Oh sweet lady, please help me! This one is insane! Sh-" Bethany's foot collided with his face and blood splashed across the floor from his split lip. "Shut your mouth you lying snake" She snapped impatiently. She looked at the woman who'd stood up and intervened. She was tall, with brown hair, blue eyes and an attractive face that made her pause. The woman carried and ornate sword at her side, and she dressed in a way that suggested nobility. Considering they were in alliance lands, that made Bethany cautious. She kept her sword pointed at Kraf's chest, almost dismissed the woman. Almost. For all she knew, this woman was a Red fang leader, or someone with ties to them who wouldn't be happy about slaves being reclaimed.

Bethany's free hand moved to rest on Asi's hilt. "What is it to you? Actually nevermind. I suggest you turn around, sit your pretty ass down and go back to your soup." She said quietly. "Overheard or not you've no idea whats going on so keep out of it because I would rather not have to hurt anyone else besides this moron." She said forcefully. With that she dismissed the woman and turned her gaze back to Kraf. "Now, where the hell are those Girl's Kraf? I wont ask you again." She said, lowering her sword to one of his fingers. She started to press down on it, blood welled, and he began to scream.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:32 am

Kairi looked at the man as he pleaded with her for safety, but he was cut off by a boot to the face. The girl paused for a moment, before seemingly dismissing Kairi as a threat. Kairi squared her shoulders and fixed an icy stare on Mercy. "Believe me, I'd love for no-one to get hurt and to just return to my soup, but I don't take orders from random shouting people in taverns." Kairi gestured to the man on the floor. "Now I would just let you and him kick the face off each other. But you mentioned captured slave girls, and that was enough to make it my business. I will find them and free them. No matter who gets in my way. Now, are you going to tell me what this is about? Or are you going to force me to get nasty?" While Kairi wasn't sure of Mercy's exact capabilities, she did look like she could look after herself. But Kairi's path was chosen, and she would not falter.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Vala on Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:37 am

Bethany stopped when she realised the woman was still there. She seemed far to interested in the slaves for Bethany's liking, and because of Kraf's betrayal, and the disappearance of the slaves she wasn't in a particulary trusting mood. She didn't take the woman's words at face value and assumed she meant retake them when she said free. The woman certainly was willing to fight for the information. Bethany narrowed her eyes. "You can't be serious human. Force you to get nasty? I'll knock you on your ass if you keep fucking annoying me." She said, taking a step forward. Her attention was fully on Kairi, and the thugs in the booth besides her sensed that. The closest one lunged at her and tried to stab her in the side.

The cheap steel hit her skin but failed to pierce it. It slipped and scrapped against it, before his wrist twisted. If he'd had a better understanding of his weapon he might have actually gotten through. However all it achieved was to tear a hole in her clothing and piss her off. She let out a snarl as the thug pulled back and tried to stab her again. She caught his wrist and held his hand there, then drove her gladius into his gut. He let out a cry of pain and she dropped him to the floor. His friend took a run at her, slashing at her with a knife. He caught her across the arm, ripping the bandages away and revealing the red scales there. The knife skittered off them harmlessly, and her sword cut across his throat before he could attack again. She pushed his gurgling, shocked form back into the booth and turned back to Kraf, who had escaped in the chaos. The door slammed shut behind him.

Furious red eyes turned to regard the woman. "You just had to get involved." She snapped and tried to push her way past the woman. If she blocked Bethany she would curse at her and step back before drawing Asi. If she didn't, she took off running. But catching Kraf would be difficult in a town she wasn't familiar with. And the delay might mean she'd lose those girls to what ever sick plan Kraf had for them. Something she didn't think she could live with.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Wed Jul 04, 2018 9:54 am

Mercy once again dismissed the threat Kairi posed. The Human was rapidly beginning to lose patience with the whole situation. She set her stance and gripped her sword tightly as Mercy took a step towards her, her attention fully on Kairi now."You may try, Asentari." Then it kicked off, one of the men in the booth lunging at Mercy. The man's weapon was ineffective, bouncing off what Kairi assumed was the famous Asentari Dragon Skin. Mercy ran the man through, and another charged her. This time her arm was hit, but the result was the same, the knife simply tearing the Asentari's clothing. She cut the man's throat in a flash, the hapless wretch dropping to the floor gurgling. The door slammed shut, indicating the one called Kraf had bolted.

Mercy turned on Kairi, scorning her for her involvement. Kairi drew her own sword and stood firm when Mercy attempted to shoulder her way past. "I'm going to go after him, and find out where these girls are. I'd wager that I know this town far better than he does. Maybe you too. You're free to follow, but if you get in my way, you will not be forgiven." Kairi turned swiftly and opened the door. She gave a quick glance to Mercy. "If there are girls being kept as slaves, I will rescue them, whatever the cost, and I will eliminate whoever interferes. Those are my terms." Kairi stepped outside, recognizing the path of chaos Kraf had left in his wake. There were two ways to escape Dungard, and escape was the only plan, as there wasn't really anywhere to hide without causing a commotion, and Kraf didn't really seem like the clever type. Kairi decided to chance the stables, banking on desperation driving Kraf to take the most obvious route. She took a few shortcuts through the blacksmith and the tailor shop, arriving at the stables as swiftly as she could.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Vala on Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:11 am

The woman drew her sword and stood her ground. She again claimed she intended to save the girls. Bethany seen the conviction in her eyes and lowered her sword slightly. "Your the one in the way! But we dont have time for this. Fine, if you say you want to help, then help. But if your lying, I will kill you." She said. "Anything happens to those girls, and I'm holding you responsible. Now move before he escapes." She said. The woman did, and seemed to have an idea of where he might be going. She followed behind.

They arrived outside the stables just as Kraf emerged dragging a horse who was less than entusiastic to follow him. He mounted up and took off out of the stables at desperate speeds. Bethany was across at the stables and spotted two saddled horses. She slashed the ties free and handed the reigns to the woman. "Don't make me regret this." She said as she threw herself into the saddle and kicked the horse into a gallop. Thankfully the horse obedient, and fast for that matter.

Travelling at breakneck speeds, Bethany soon began to gain on Kraf. She didn't look back to see if the woman was still following. She didn't care eitherway, as long as they found the girls and she got to put a sword through that fucking liar. Bethany spurred the horse on faster and faster, and slowly began to pull up beside Kraf. She stood up in the saddle, and lept from the back of the horse. Time slowed, and she had a chance to reflect on her current situation. Then she hit Kraf and the two of them flew off the back of his horse. She hit the ground with a thump, taking the brunt of the impact as kraf landed on top of her, and her weapons were torn loose. The breath knocked out of her, and she tumbled across the road. Kraf bounced in the opposite direction, landing somewhere nearby.

Dazed, she tried to regain her focus. And stand. But then Kraf was above her, Vadjra in his hand. "I'm going to make you beg for mercy, Mercy." He said with a wicked laugh.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:55 am

Kairi took the reigns of the horse she was given, and climbed on immediately. She was an experienced horse-rider, so she had a feeling she would catch up to Kraf before long, given that his horse hadn't seemed particularly cooperative. She was unconcerned by Mercy's subtle threat, though she vowed to keep an eye on her would-be ally for now. Soon she was was speeding out of the gate and on Kraf's trail. Kairi was a good deal bigger than Mercy was, so she couldn't quite match the speed the Asentari was able to reach. The road rounded a corner, and Mercy caught up to Kraf as they rounded it. Kairi rounded the corner herself just in time to see Kraf knocked off his horse by an airborne Mercy. He recovered first and held Mercy's weapon to her neck while she lay prone.

Kairi made her decision instantly. Drawing Starlight and shifting it into its spear form, Kairi rushed the two. Kraf was too preoccupied with Mercy, muttering some pun on her name, that he didn't notice Kairi until it was too late. She smacked him in the chest with the handle of her spear, knocking him backwards and winding him. Kairi deftly dropped to the ground and kicked the weapon from his hand. She held the tip of her spear to his throat. "My patience is short. Tell me where these girls are being kept, and I'll consider not ending your miserable life here. I don't care for excuses or stories, I just want to here a location." She glanced quickly at Mercy to make sure she was still with it, before staring back down at her quarry.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Vala on Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:06 am

Bethany seen Kairi comming and smiled at Kraf. He looked cofused, and then the realisation dawned on him. He took a whack to the chest and was sent flying. Kairi stopped her horse and was on him before he could move. Bethany stood up and grabbed the sword he'd taken. Then she found Asi, and watched Kairi interogate the man. "I tried to tell you, I don't know-" Bethany drew Asi and the blade caught alight. With a quick swing, she severed the hand from Kraf's arm. Asi burned so hot the wound was cauterised as she cut. Kraf began to scream. "Answer the question. The next swing will take your manhood." She said calmly. He spluttered and began to cry. "No, no you'll kill me if I tell you!" He wailed. She crouched beside him, Asi close enough to his skin that it would begin to burn soon.

"Kraf I swear on my honor, I won't kill you. Just tell us, before it gets worse. Because it will get worse. I can cut parts off of you all day, and you will break before you die. Trust me, I've done it before." She said. "You swear?" He asked. She looked at Kairi, then back at Kraf.  "I swear." She said again, and pulled Asi away from his face. The flames flickered out, and she sheathed the weapon. He let out a breath. "Alright. I'll tell you. There's a bandit camp in the forest west of Dungard. They like to steal from the Red Fang and sell the slaves on directly to Karcenak. I hire mercenaries to help rescue the girls, then we wisk them away and kill the hired help." Kraf explained. "That way we don't need to pay them."

"Well, that's lovely Kraf. I figured as much when your men tried to run me through. So, where in this forest?" She asked. "Its near a bridge, the main road crosses a small river. Its not hard to miss.." he explained. He looked at Kairi, and then back to Bethany and smiled. "I told you everything, can I go now?" Bethany began to nod, and then she drew Vadjra and drove the sword down into his chest. She ripped it free, and stabbed a second and third time, for good measure. Kraf thrashed and gurgled, then fell still. She stood up and cleaned the blade on the cloak.

Sheathing the blade, she looked at Kairi. "Well, thanks for the help. But I think its about time you told me who you are. I might as well know your name if your going to come with me to this camp, and I assume you are." She said. She didn't make a move until the woman introduced herself, but she was far less hostile. Not that she trusted her quite yet, but saving her from Kraf, even if she could have easily torched him, was a start. "I'm Mercy. I know, bit of a silly nickname but it stuck so thats what I go by."

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Fri Jul 06, 2018 12:09 pm

Kraf decided to be unhelpful initially, which worked to his detriment. Mercy came over to them and cut his hand off with a flaming blade. The man screamed, but when Mercy threatened his lower extremities. He began to cooperate fully when Mercy promised not to harm him if he told them what they wanted to know. Kraf explained about a bandit camp in the forest west of Dungard. The bandits there raided Red Fang caravans and took the slaves they transported straight to Karcenak, for a tidy profit. Kraf sent mercs to steal a few, and then planned to take care of the hired help instead of paying them.

Kraf finished his debrief, and asked if he was allowed to go, but Mercy put paid to that by ventilating him with her sword. Kairi shook her head in exasperation. "Was that really necessary?" Mercy introduced herself, and asked about Kairi's identity. Kairi transformed Starlight back into its normal form and sheathed it. "So I gathered as that poor wretch was yelling it in between pleading for his life. My name is Kairi Thorne. I was in Dungard on behalf of the Order of the Sun. I was discussing my next mission with a contact just before you and your friend there turned up. I don't know you, and I'm not here to be your enemy. Let's just say, I have a personal reason for wanting to make sure those slaves get freed." Kairi turned to her horse and ushered it homeward. The horse took off back towards Dungard swiftly. Kairi looked expectantly at Mercy. "Well then, Mercy. Shall we get started?"

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Vala on Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:34 am

Bethany looked at Kairi and shrugged. "Necessary? You think he was going to go home, put his life of crime behind him and what, take up farming? Death is the only way to deal with people like him. And If thats a problem, you might want to reconsider coming with me." She said. Kairi introduced herself and explained why she'd been there. "Order Of The Sun? I know of it. I met Order soldiers protecting Edaria's trade routes from the Red Fang." She said. She'd encountered them on the way to Edia. It was possible she'd also had a run in with them when she'd been raiding Karcenak trade lines. But that was a while ago. Kairi mentioned she had personal reasons for wanting to free the slaves. Personal, not duty bound. She chewed on that for a moment before responding. "Yeah, you and me both." She said solemly, but she didn't ask for more detail on the reason. Truth was, she'd taken the contract to help, not because she needed the money. She didn't foresee the betrayal because of that.

"We probably don't have much time to waste. Besides, there was very few female bandits in the group that took the slaves. I doubt those men will keep their hands to themselves for too long." She said and started to plot a course to the place Kraf had described. It wasn't far, considering Kraf decided the best course of action to escape them, was to run straight for the camp. They reached the bridge soon enough, and Bethany traced the river into the forest with her eyes. She looked at Kairi. "I'm going to go out on a limb and say you're not much for stealth.." Bethany said. "Do you want me to scout ahead, or shall we throw ourselves into the deep end and worry about numbers later?" Bethany asked her. She was probably capable of reaching the camp without being spotted.

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Re: A Tale of Two Warriors

Post by Orgoth on Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:11 am

Mercy retorted that death was sometimes necessary for people like Kraf. Kairi didn't respond, instead as the Asentari mentioned the Order of the Sun and their protection of the trade routes leading in and out of Edaria, the largest and most protected city in the Free Lands. Edaria was one of the few bastions of fair and honest trade left in the Free Lands, so the Order of the Sun made it their business to make sure it stayed that way. Mercy mentioned she also had a personal stake in rescuing the slaves, to which Kairi nodded solemnly. At least they had that in common.

Kairi and Mercy followed Kraf's directions, an easier task than it could have been as Kraf had been heading there when they caught up to him. They reached the bridge and both studied the river as it disappeared into the forest. Mercy commented on Kairi's lack of stealth ability, to which the Human nodded glumly. Kairi did see the benefit of being skilled in stealth, but she decided to leave that to others, preferring instead to fight in the open. Kairi pondered Mercy's suggestion. "Perhaps that is a good idea. I would like this to be as quick and clean as possible. I'll follow you as far as the tree line, than you can scout ahead and come back to me." When they reached the cover of the trees, Kairi drew her sword and glanced at Mercy. "Alright then, I'll wait here. Don't take any stupid risks. The mercs might kill the slaves if they think someone's trying to steal them for themselves. If you're not back in fifteen minutes, or if I hear a trouble, I'm going in."

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