Return of the Emblem Chapter Eight: Affairs of the World
Posted 29 March 2012 - 02:50 AM
"You think we're trouble, huh?" one of the sailors yelled. "Listen and listen good. Anyone who sails with the captain of the Leverager is as good as dead. Fair warnin', ladies."
What are these ships, rivals or something?! Raquel yelled to herself. Part of me wants to see the Leverager's captain just to spite those jerks, but we might actually be getting involved in something we shouldn't. I don't really want to take sides in a random privateer spat ... especially not out in the ocean. I keep having dreams about almost drowning for gods' sake! As she thought about it, she continued to tremble behind Gytha. The sailors were thinking about leaving but hadn't quite gotten to it yet. Maybe they thought it more useful to just stand there giving various mean looks.
The cloaked man only looked back once ... to make sure his potential customer was following him. It took a bit of walking and people dodging, but he eventually came to his shop, about a hundred feet from the knife and trinket shops. The buildings that faced that side of the market had a few very small roofed patios that some shops were set up in. This cloaked man's was one such shop. The display had nothing but signs about 'mystical' items. The entrance itself was only blocked by a pair of deep velvet blue curtains. The cloaked man stepped inside where it would have been dark if not for all of his merchandise. Everything on the tables and displays glowed ... somewhat, but not quite like the fire emblem. Rings, necklaces, bracelets, bracers, tiaras, crystal balls; any gemstone visible gave off a magical glow, and many of them had different tinges of color to them. The shop was still just dark enough to make a customer consider watching their step.
"Welcome to Mualim's Treasures." was the inevitable open armed greeting Bert would receive upon entering.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 03:21 AM
Well, they wound up at some mystic shop, it looked like. Rizen stayed outside the shop at Norbert's direction after he retrieved the ten gold he meant to spend. As he entered, the pegasus rider looked back, seeing Riz just standing there. "...You've actually learned you don't always have to be around me, haven't you?" he murmurred, impressed, "Huh." And then he went back to entering the shop proper. It certainly was dark in there compared to the bright daytime light. The various glowing objects seemed almost to float in the darkness, creating an eerie atmosphere. Bert grimaced. Would anything in here actually make a good gift? It seems weird, unless you're buying for a magician or something...
For now, he put those thoughts aside and walked to where he assumed the counter was then asked, "So... You were saying something about knowing a good way for me to pay" Should I say her name? "my colleague back?" If he has something that's ten gold and useful I should get it and get out. I've had enough weird magic done to me in the past and I don't want it to happen again...whatever it'll be this time. And this place sure is...different. Far from normal, that's for sure.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 08:10 AM
Posted 29 March 2012 - 08:31 AM
And then Raquel and the rest left, to keep looking for that ship.
<Well, if they are telling the truth, at the very least there is not much danger if they just go see the captain to discuss passage. Though I'm sure if they talk about this little encounter with the captain then... well, if we do end up going in that ship, guess I'll have to keep a cautious eye once we're all in there, just in case.>
He looked over at the thugs. <Hm, should I try to find out more about this...?>
Three coins? Sophia thought. Well, it's not much, although... ''I'll keep it in mind. Though, I want to browse first, if you don't mind.''
Posted 29 March 2012 - 04:29 PM
"Did you have anything specific in mind, Sophia?"
Posted 29 March 2012 - 04:39 PM
Gytha didn't seem to want to keep bothering with the Dark Utka's sailors, so she somewhat guided Raquel out of the situation, and without much reason to stay, she went along with it. She just kept her eyes out for large ships and a flag with spears on it. Soon enough, she found what she was looking for, the Leverager was docked, its sails up, anchors down, ramp in place, and several crew members around loading up barrels and crates. Raquel couldn't make out the flag from where she was standing, but it had some green in it at the very least, and there was an elaborate arrangement of 'sticks' ... probably the spears. If that wasn't enough, the ship's name did read in large letters across the back. Of course, Raquel was still paranoid and was reacting to things like a scared toddler. She wasn't going to be able to approach any of the crewmen without some nudging it seemed.
"The fallen thing is a little less impressive with context, heheh. But yeah, make sure ya don't get too drunk, there. If you and our boss go into talks while you're drunk, you'll probably end up workin' for food and foot massages instead of actual money." Gabbie joked.
"Why yes, certainly. Take your time, young miss." the shopkeeper replied with his hands clasped together and a wide smile on his face. It could have been genuine excitement about a potential sale, or a facade to help bring it about. Always difficult to tell with these types.
"Why yes. Simply have a look around. Any kind of gift you could think of exists right here among my wares, valuable trinkets and accessories. And you will not have to worry about being charged a small fortune, either~"
Posted 29 March 2012 - 05:05 PM
"Ummm... I am afraid I did not catch that. What did you just offer me in simpler terms?"
She mentally groaned as she felt certain he would explain it like he was talking to a moron or baby, but it was the only way for her to know just what he was offering. Plus, where had Bert and Tina gone?
Posted 29 March 2012 - 06:05 PM
The issue with the Dark Utka members had been solved, fortunately with no violence necessary. Now they had arrived at the Leverager and Raquel didn't seem too inclined to move. Maybe she has a fear of sailors? Veronika thought to herself before she decided to go up to one of the crewmen herself.
"Could we speak with your captain please? Our group may be interested in riding aboard this vessel," she said to one of the men loading up a barrel.
High chance of death? I knew this mission sounded too easy... Clara thought to herself, somewhat distraught.
Relic hunting really doesn't sound so dangerous...unless their relics held by dragons or Fallen or something. Cloe mused.
"I suggest not dying then, at least stay alive long enough to make a report," Layla said dismissively to Cecily's concerns. "Speaking of dying, I give you three permission to kill the fat one if he's about to jeopardize the mission. New recruits have an unpleasant history of screwing up their first assignment and this is too important to leave room for failure."
Edited by -Cynthia-, 29 March 2012 - 06:06 PM.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 06:06 PM
''To be honest, no.'' Sophia answered. ''Though looking now, there are several things that grab my attention.'' She admitted. Though they look they might be expensive. She thought.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 06:11 PM
"Ye still want t' bother with this 'un?" she asked Raquel, "Might have a full crew alreada. They're loadin' up th' ship, after all." Veronika decided to step forward and take the initiative again. Wonder why she does that.
"What do you have that costs exactly ten gold?" Norbert asked, deciding to just get down to business. His eyes were adjusting to the dark, so he could see things more easily now.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 06:12 PM
Gytha called out the Dark Utka's crewman for their improbable tale, while Veronika spoke up and asked about the cargo. This had the effect of infuriating the 'eloquent' goon, and having another point-blank shoot down the Skotian's request for information. In turn, Raquel lost it, and shouted at the impromptu press-gang to leave them alone. Gytha agree, and said that they seemed like trouble. No, really? Unfortunately, the third sailor overheard that exchange, and considerately undermined his colleague's efforts to recruit the merchant cell by threatening them with death if they joined the Leverager. Then he finished off by addressing them as 'ladies'. Rude. Despite Blake's minor concern about his masculinity, he followed the Gytha-led trio without saying a word to the buffoons. As they searched for the boat, the swordsman kept his eye on his employer. She was acting as if everything around her was out to get her. He definitely would have to ask about the bar once this debacle was over and done with.
Once they had found the Leverager, thanks to its' lettering on the hull, Raquel sort of half-held, half-clutched Gytha's shoulder, unbelievably tense, though Gytha did not seem to be aware of that as she asked her employer if they even should bother. Well, of course they should! One of the other options seemed to be quite rude and inept, so, it would be best to check out the other options before locking themselves to a clearly terrible one. Raquel stood there, rooted to the spot. It would be up to them to make first contact, it seemed. Blake was about to do so, when Veronika walked straight up and approached the nearest crewman with a point-blank demand to see the captain. That worked, too.
Edited by Snike, 29 March 2012 - 06:16 PM.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 06:42 PM
"Well ... we've come this far ...." Raquel managed to get out, and right around the time Veronika wandered over to speak with a crewman. "I'm sorry ... I'm not helping much." ... though I've haven't really gotten to speak much with the three captains ... only the Argus' captain so far. she realized. That was when she decided to try and be braver this time and not hide behind anyone.
Meanwhile, the crewman put down the barrel, wiped his brow and then gawked when he saw who he was speaking to. "Ya want to speak with the captain ...? Ya want to sail with us? Wh-what?"
The Dark Utka
With their attempt to keep Raquel and the others away from the Leverager leading to an utter backfire, the three sailors decided to head back to their own ship. It wasn't being loaded up with anything, but most of the crew was present and getting the ship ready to sail. They hurried up the ramps and found the captain overseeing the work on the deck. He was a tough looking man with a red longcoat, a bit hat, and about six pistols holstered on his person. The only other kind of weapon he carried was a simple cutlass. The three approached him carefully.
"The Leverager's got people askin' to join up. We're tryin' to dissuade them but-" "Don't bother!" the captain interrupted. "Let'em hire everyone they want. I've got a plan this time, and I don't want you idiots mucking it up. To your stations. We set sail in half an hour, and I dare the Leverager to try and catch us this time."
"Oooo, did we upgrade the cannons, Captain?"
"Mind your blasted business. You'll find out soon enough."
"Well like I said, we don't have any bonded knives that aren't made of metal in stock, right now," he began. "Material bonding is pretty profitable, though, so if you can find someone who'll do it without charging you too much, you should seek them out. And again, if you know any dark magic users, you might want to see if they can do it. Even if they don't, they could probably make a lot of money if they learned how. Bonded items sell for more than triple the price of regular equipment more of the time ... sometimes way more than that if the bondsman has a good reputation." the assistant explained.
"Paying the lady back in exact amounts, yes? Very well." Mualim replied. He turned away from Bert and headed toward the back of the store. When he returned, he had a black, flat, rectangular box in his hands. He opened the box once he had brought it to him revealing what appeared to be a silver necklace with three gemstones embedded, one being the focus of the necklace, and two smaller ones to the left and right. It was well polished, and so the light coming from the stones made the entire thing seem to shine with a golden tinge. "I could part with this beautiful piece for a mere ten gold." he explained, looking into Bert's eyes for a reaction.
Simon flinched when Layla gave the pegasus sisters the 'okay' to kill him if he got in the way. He expected this sort of treatment but hearing that it was official nearly stamped out the rest of his bravado then and there. He did his best to hide the fear though, keeping his eyes in the shadows of his hood, and his expression blank. Cecily glanced over pityingly. She didn't think killing him would ever be necessary ... he was at enough risk if he ever saw front line combat. "Do you know where Sardis is currently? I'm guessing we'll be heading out soon ..." she inquired.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 06:55 PM
Posted 29 March 2012 - 07:00 PM
"We're interested in going north and we heard your ship takes trips there- we'd like to speak with your captain about a possible arrangement," she said to the crewman, who seemed a little disoriented. I guess I do look a little out of place here...ah well.
Clara frowned visibly at Layla's comment- she couldn't really imagine killing Simon even if he did make a mistake.
"Unless he's gone wandering off somewhere very recently, he should still be up north," she said, handing Cecily a map. "It's a town we use as base of operations- and yes I'd prefer you get there sooner rather than later. Don't want to miss anything after all."
And here I thought I could finally get some relaxation...never a dull moment I guess. Cloe thought to herself.
Edited by -Cynthia-, 29 March 2012 - 07:01 PM.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 08:06 PM
Blast it, he would pick a bauble, wouldn't he? I don't have any way to check for quality with this sort of thing... Norbert mentally mumbled as he studied the necklace. After a moment, he asked, "What exactly does it do?"
Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:32 PM
"I don't know what I'm doing exactly, either ..." Raquel replied looking down again. "Well, either way, just standing over here isn't going to help so ..." she added, but paused to gulp. "I guess we should go closer. People randomly accosting us ... our enemies lurking behind every corner ... all of this water ... my emblem piece right out in plain sight ... only a handful of us together ... I have to stay calm; it's not nearly as bad as I think it is.
"You don't ... look like a ... hmm. You're not a mercenary, are you? You're some rich girl trying to get home." the crewman assessed. Meanwhile Raquel tried to get a little closer ... her appearance only cemented the man's first impression. "Two rich girls. Okay ..." he muttered, sweating a bit. "You shouldn't be signing on with us if you're hoping for smooth sailing. Just a fair warning for you."
"No," the assistant shook his head. "There's no formula or anything like that. I don't know how to bond items. I just know a little about it. If you find someone who knows how or could learn how, it's up to them. I'm just giving you some information so you know where to start." he clarified.
Meanwhile Bert had a conversation in the dark with a complete stranger. He asked what it 'did' causing Mualim to chuckled briefly. "For only ten gold, I hope you are not expecting strange magic. This piece here merely offers an aura pleasing to the eyes. However ... if your lady friend were a mage, I am certain she would find use for it beyond simply wearing it." he explained.
"Well ... it doesn't get any simpler than that. Clara, Cloe, pack whatever you want to take with you. You too, Simon. We need to get moving while there's still plenty of daylight." Cecily instructed. Simon stood there looking out of place for a moment, and then decided to do as she asked and walked off down the hall.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:48 PM
"We heard," Blake chimed in, as he put on as much of a professional air as he could at the time.
"Noted," Axel said, as he returned to looking out the window. "Is there anything else you want to discuss, or may I go and practice? I need to keep my edge." And it was true. He had wasted his time by blowing himself to kingdom come, and the lancer now had only a limited time to get ready for the next assignment. He needed every second he could afford.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:57 PM
"Our group's a bit larger than this really- and don't worry we're used to...trouble," she said the crewman, deciding not to bother with telling him that Ursium wasn't her home at all.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:57 PM
Edited by Snowy_One, 29 March 2012 - 10:01 PM.
Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:58 PM
"Don't dodge my questions or you'll quickly find out I'm a pretty irritable guy," Norbert responded, keeping his tone mostly flat, though he was finding the fact that he had to repeat his question annoying.
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