Fields of Wilting Roses (1g,PSys,CL)

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Fields of Wilting Roses (1g,PSys,CL)

Unread postby Nekogami » Thu Feb 14, 2008 10:55 pm

<CENTER>Image</CENTER>

In the center of the great square in front of Doma Castle is the Community Bulletin. A large board of cork and wood littered with papers of all colors and sizes with words of even great variety ingrained in their fibers. The black proclamations of government and citizenry collide together in no discernible order but still people manage to pick through the mess to get at what they want to know. More than the papers or gossip heard in bars, the community bulletin provides a voice for people that otherwise wouldn't be heard. Anonymously, sometimes in the darkness of the night, a rogue poster would tack a provocative something up and be the talk of the town the next few days.

For that reason, there was always a crowd around the bulletin board in the morning hours. People were just starting their daily rounds or going off to their work so a tantalizing bit of news or gossip was just the thing to kick off the day. But the crowd around the bulletin board and the in the square was larger today. A crisp government post dominated the ratty pages and faded ink of the other postings and it was getting all the attention that it deserved...

From a few feet away it was easy to see that some royal tonguewagger had a lot to say and just a small space to say it so they wrote small and crammed as much as they could into the one page but there was one word the stood out boldly.

<CENTER>QUARANTINE</CENTER>

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Unread postby Taiar » Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:52 pm

From afar, it looked as if another pair of wanted posters had gone up on the city's bullitin board. They were always the first thing to catch this Mazoku's interest; he didn't have much interest in bounty hunting as much as it might suit his needs on a number of different levels, but it was always good to know that the face that looked back at him from above the impressive sum of Doman dollars wasn't someone he knew or liked.

It was much better to know that the face wasn't his own.

Taiar bit down on a bun and held it in his mouth, using his newly free hand to part the crowds surrounding the board and make his way a little bit closer. As crowds usually do, many were a bit less cooperative than he would have wished in letting him through, and although a demon has certain powers at his disposal...it probably wasn't worth it right now. He had breakfast already.

As Tai got close enough, he reached out and lifted up one of the notes casually to see another one it covered, scanning the rest of the wooden structure with only half interest. Big bold red letters are plenty enough to catch half an interest though, fluffing up the mind's curiousity like a giant cloud.

'...Quarantine?'
'It surprises me that the lords of this city do something about these disease ridden streets now, considering they must have ignored it previously.'
'Might not be about something so standard then.'

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Fri Feb 15, 2008 6:39 pm

Amongst the hustle and bustle of the city, behind the crowd gathering in front of the bulletin board, a lone woman wanders through the streets.

She wears the traditional robes of an Ishtarian Priestess, the garment showing wear and tear from frequent use. Her skin is fair in tone, with dashes of freckles along her arms and parts of her face. Long Strawberry-Blonde hair hangs down to her shoulders, parts held out of her face by an ivory-colored hairband.

She seems uninterested in the goings on around her, staring at the ground as she walks. The faint trails of dried tears can be seen near her eyes, which still appear welled up with fluid.

"...why did he do that?" she thinks to herself as she walks, "How could he do this to me...?"

Her thoughts drift back to hours before, when the young woman met with the head of her church.



"What do you mean I can't go?!"

"Sister..."

"The other sisters are going to need my help! And the people of the village! And the..."

"...Katherine.

"...yes Father?"

"Katherine, the truth is I'm starting to worry about you."

"...Worry? But Father Rudal, why? Have I done something wrong?"

"Oh, nothing of that sort. Your devotion and faith to the Goddess is admirable. No, what concerns me is your own welfare. I fear you may be pushing yourself much too far."

"But I'm fine, Father! Truly fine! Perhaps I push myself a bit harden that others, but if I can fulfill the teachings of the Goddess, isn't that Ok?"

"While Ishtar does teach us to look out for others, she also expects us to look out for ourselves. And I fear you haven't been doing that enough lately. Even now, the dark spots under your eyes tell me you haven't been sleeping enough."

"...Father, I had no choice. If I didn't stay up and finish, all those people..."

"And what will they do when you push yourself too far? Who will help them when you collapse and require help instead?"

"...Father.... I... I know my limits. I..."

"I'm sorry, Sister, but I'm not changing my mind. You need some time to think about your own well-being, and how the Goddess would feel about your actions."

"...I can't believe you're doing this to me..."

"I know this may seem harsh, but you need time to reflect on..."

"HOW COULD YOU?!?!"



Hours later, after wandering the streets in tears, the woman finds herself here. She couldn't understand why the Father did what he did. How could he think she was pushing herself too hard? Wasn't that part of being a priestess? Pushing yourself to the limit to serve Ishtar's will? What did he mean by not looking after herself? What did he see that seemed so obvious?

As she ponders the Father's words, she's suddenly distracted by someone bumping into her. As Katherine looks up to see who did it, she notices the rush of people running past her, away from the nearby bulletin board. There's also a rather large crowd gathering around it. Curious, she begins to wander over toward the crowd, catching brief snippets of conversation.

"...a royal proclamation..."

"Bah, it's probably just a forgery."

"But look at the quality! It has to be real."

"Then these are truly dark times, indeed..."

The concern and fear on the faces in the crowd is very apparently to the priestess. Uncertain about what these people are talking about, Katherine glances over at the bulletin board. While she can't make out the faint writing from her position, she can easily read the bold red letters spelling out "QUARANTINE"

"...Goddess. What's going on?" Katherine wonders aloud.

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Seethe
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Unread postby Seethe » Sat Feb 16, 2008 5:47 am

Another person drew near the crowd. This one was a nekojin, though it was obvious by her humanlike form that she wasn't a pureblood. Her visible clothing consisted of a long coat made of a black leather-like material covering her arms, torso, and waist, along with a pair of boots and gloves made of brown leather. Her hair was dyed purple and cropped just above her shoulders, while the rest of her fur was mostly orange with a few black stripes.

Brinala was slightly annoyed to find such a large crowd gathered around the bulletin board. It made reading it in peace quite a difficult matter. They were all discussing the word "quarantine," which had apparently been written rather prominently on the board. Really, she could understand why one might become worried about such a word, but all these people were really just getting in the way now. Those who had seen the notice should move along to some other location if they wanted to discuss it so that those who hadn't read it could get to it.

Lacking the muscle to shove her way through the crowd, Nala had to negotiate through what spaces there were between people. This took her some time, and when she had reached the board, someone else was already reading the notice that had produced the current situation. Reading over someone's shoulder was rude, so her Nekonian sensibilities forbade her from peering past the man to see what she could. Instead, she simply waited, scanning the other notices in the meantime.

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Unread postby Christian » Sat Feb 16, 2008 6:48 pm

While being used to walk with a slouch, hunch even, Mikail Veldrin, Baronian engineer extraordinaire, and extrauncommon for good measures, stood at his full length, an impressive six foot six, in order to get a glimpse of the noticeboard to which so many drew their attention. He hadn't been in Doma for long, as the rather stuffed leather backpack slung over his left shoulder suggested, but already he had twice been denied work and accomodations, so he was getting a tad bit desperate.

"Let me see..." he thought for himself as he absentmindedly rubbed soot off the tip of his nose, a remnant from the latest mishap at the stables, "Wanted... arsony, robbery, murder... female impersonation... yes... yes I could do... no, wait, they're looking for someone who's done it..." he shifted slightly and with a low harumphf his brow furrowed, this city was useless! No job opportunities what so ever! And the people around him, talking about this and that, whatever it was that occupied these lesser peoples... minds...

He made an audible sound of interest as he noticed the boldly written word, his interest suddenly picqued and fingers trembling with anticipation. Things always did turn interesting when suppression was added to a general force of motion, especially if this motion had nowhere to expell the build-up of kinetic energy... Now what was this all about now? He leaned closer, even more resembling a cadaver-eating vulture than before, as his thick, greasy hair barely even ruffled in the breeze, the sheen of it resembling that of thick, oily motorlubricants. His hands began to dig into the stained pockets of his ash-grey trenchcoat, soon fishing up a bent and ill-looking cigarette that he quickly showed, somehow bypassing the laws of matter, into his mouth while still keeping the stained muffler just under his crooked nose, his nostrils flaring in anticipation.







[[OOC Note - As I'm unaware if cigarettes can exist in Gaera, I'm more than willing to either change it to a pipe or remove it entirely. Sorry for the inconvenience...]]

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Unread postby Nekogami » Sun Feb 17, 2008 9:54 am

<center>Image</center>

"We, the government of Doma, ruled by His Most August Highness, King Charles Robert Franklyn Gazern Domanda, have set forth this issue of public health and safety, declaring that all person of ill health report immediately to the Office of Public Health and Safety temporarily located at 52 Domanda Square and 10 Domanada Square.

If you are unsure whether or not your health is compromised, please report to either of these addresses to receive a brief but comprehensive evaluation.

Only certain ailments will be freely treated by this, the government of His Most Generous Royalty, King Domanada, ailments not covered will receive a recommendation of treatment.

The following houses are under government-approved quarantine pending an outbreak of a highly contagious but harmless skin disease.

The following homes and families are hereby quarantined under until further notices as proclaimed by the senior health official of this kingdom. If you belong to any of these families ore have been to these residences in the last week, report to the nearest soldier in order to be safely escorted to your home and thereby examined under the careful eye of a government-approved healer. Personal healers, biased by years of service, payment, enchantment, malediction, or otherwise will be considered approved by the government. Please refrain from attempting to influence approved officials as this will result in imprisonment as well as quarantine.

The House of Ellerby
The House of Del Izquierda
The House of Pountouse
The House of Mizutani
The House of Fullermount
The House of Viznyetachaov.
The House of Chatterly

Signed, Executive Deputy Assistant of Health and Safety."

The reaction of the crowd is mixed. A grizzled man with black stained hands and a worker's frock drops the pull cart of coal. It was the tenth time since he stopped to read the proclamation that he picked up and dropped the push cart as he shouted out to the crowds. "Bah! Some Lords and Lasses get a bad rash because of some crooked shipment of talc and the King is bending backwards and sideways for them but where was he when half the slums had the Coughing Fits? Eh? I'll tell ya he wasn't seeing the world upside down for us."

Two women in maid's attire pay him no mind as they try to shove their way through the crowd to get back to work.
" 'Hightly contagious but harmless'? This seems like an awful lot of fuss for a skin disease don't you think, Ishtarine?"
"Maybe it's disfiguring? I was at the Chatterly home two months ago; Do you think that I should get checked?"
"I don't know do you have any disfiguring rashes?"
"Just the usual dry skin from washing powder. Do you think that's what they mean?"
"You should have it checked, just in case. But can we do it after breakfast?"
"Sure! I mean it's harmless right? Maybe I can scare my lady into a week off with pay?"
"HA! That skinflint? You'd better bath in that washing powder if you want to scare her into fishing in her purse." They have a good laugh at their employer's expense and head towards south Doma.

Two government healers, young boys probably fresh out the temple or academy, hurry past the board talking in hushed voices. Even as quiet even a whisper can find its way to interested ears.

Taiar, perhaps drawn to their worry, Katherine, even beyond her own inner turmoil, Brinala, patiently waiting her turn, and Mikail, seeking opportunity all hear them...

"This is terrible. Have you seen the bodies?"
"Shh, you'll be heard. Don't worry we'll find a cure." The one boy stops and looks with worry at his friend who stops in short order and looks between the two buildings and pulls his friend to an empty bit of the square and they begin to talk.

The conversations surrounding the board run the gamut of hysterical and apathetic and there are long queues and crowds at both addresses listed on the notice. The guards try to keep order but between answering questions and dealing with minor outbreaks of discontent it's hard to do anything but just keep their heads above water.

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Sun Feb 17, 2008 2:17 pm

"...bodies? Goddess... could it be about this outbreak...?"

Katherine watches the two men hurry off to talk, feeling torn about what to do. Part of her wants to go back to the church, to inform the rest of her order about the situation. At the same time, with Father Rudal's words still fresh in her mind, part of her is reluctant as well. She fears the possibility he'll order her to stay out of the situation.

Perhaps the fear is groundless. After all, a possible city-wide epidemic would likely involve all the healers of the church. But her state of mind is far from normal today. She can't risk being asked to stay off of this. If people are in danger, she must do everything possible to help. Anything less is not acceptable.

With this all in mind, Katherine makes her way through the crowd, approaching the two healers.

"...um, excuse me." She blurts out to the two, "But uh... I... uh, couldn't... help overhearing you both. Is there um, anything at all I can do to help?"

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Unread postby Nekogami » Sun Feb 17, 2008 3:12 pm

The two men stop talking and the younger looking of the two goes noticeably pale. The second man straightens up and tries to put on a smile for the priestess.

"Sister, how nice it is to see a fellow practitioner of the arts. I, um... My friend and I, were just discussing, a bit too loudly it seems, some classified government business. I, uh...I don't know what you heard but I'm sure if your powers will be needed the head priest will be contacted to recruit his best."

The younger man looks between the two furtively, unsure and concerned.

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Unread postby Christian » Sun Feb 17, 2008 4:58 pm

Sometimes, uneerily, identical, or at least strangely parallel thoughts transcends the great mind space that links every thinking creature (albeit haphazardly and greatly based on chance) to be thought out at roughly the same time...

"...bodies? ...could it be about this outbreak...?" crossed the mind of Mikail just as when Katherine thought it, yet to the tall, lanky and the of cantakerous persuasioned man, the thought held something far more common than worry.

His eyes followed the footsteps of the sister with great care, lest he frighten the subject of his interest; he had long ago learned the hard way that interesting people generally preferred not to be a subject, or at least his subject of interest.

Sidling slowly away from the large notice board, the engineer remained in a pose of nonschalant interest, while at the same time perking his ear, a small piece of his left auricle missing, a pink, smooth edge of flesh surrounding a surprisingly perfect round hole.

When he heard the hasty explanation of the older of the men he flinched, as the word 'classified government business' had him holding little but contempt for it.

"I seem to find it peculiar," he said suddenly in a voice that was surprisingly smooth and mannered, "That such information would be maintained away from the helpful hands of the temple of..." a short, barely noticeable pause before he continued, "this honorable sister. Indeed as it would seem as if this..." he grimaced slightly under his thick muffler, mouthing the words slowly, "classified information would be, quite possible, related to these reports of... skin-conditions. If one would then simply make the next, perfectly logical assumption that the," here his voice lowered slightly, as if discussing a particularly juice secret that only he and the healers were privy of, "cure of this... body-creating problem would be greatly desired... perhaps so much that they, they being whatever organization or faction finding themselves working closely with the government, would be in the dire need of a... adept of the ways of healing, not to mention a person of my professionalism."

He wavered slightly, as if the long speech had exhausted him somewhat, but he quickly resumed a most dignified and respectful stance of humble wisdom. "Naturally, should my services be needed, and I see no reason why they would not, what with these dire times we live in, I would gladly set aside my personal business, that is of course of lesser importance than the good of this city and its citizen, and devote myself entirely to solving the problem of this a most horrendous skin-condition."

Whilst the goggles and muffler pretty much hid the parts of his face that would display his emotions, he seemed pleased, with the situation or perhaps himself, and he damned well was sweating from keeping it up.

"If such aid would be required, naturally."

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Unread postby Nekogami » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:56 pm

The two healers look at each other then the sister in a kind of overwhelmed confusion.

"Who are you exactly? You look like no healer that I have ever seen," says the stronger of the two boys. "What's more, whether the or not we recruit the aid of the surrounding temples is government business. There are extenuating circumstances that I can assure are in complete control of our healers and priests of the castle."

Stuttering to catch his words, the nervous boy gets some backbone in this situation albeit his tone is wholly apologetic. "L-look you are both fine people for wanting to lend a hand and it's not that we... we don't want your help but we're just runners. If you really want to help maybe you should see if you can get in with Lady Nasana Flitoverlakes. She's kind of our boss."

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Unread postby Taiar » Sun Feb 17, 2008 8:11 pm

"Nasana Flitoverlakes. And where might we be able to find a lady with a name like that?"

As if by teleportation, Taiar's presence is suddenly known to the four, standing at the side of young lady White Mage and the towering Engineer. Favoring just a quick and quiet movement over actual magic though, he considered it probably in his best interest to keep his Mazoku aura down... In such close proximity to those sensitive to a demonic energy however, there's probably no hiding it from Katherine and those of her kind.

As a precaution, Tai just smiles amiably enough and hopes that they take no notice of the kind of person that he seems to be. Or at least can refrain from blurting it out in fear, pointing fingers, then running away in horror while spraying holy magic in all directions. That would probably draw more attention then he needed...

'You are smiling, but no one is screaming for mercy nor have you eviserated anyone in the recent past.'
'Don't hold my breath yet.'

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Unread postby Nekogami » Sun Feb 17, 2008 8:23 pm

"AH!" The two boys jump as Tai speaks. While it's true that they were complete taken by surprise, Tai just generally gives them the creeps. He looks like an average man of perhaps Lanese decent but... he just makes them feel like spiders are running a marathon over there skin.

Be that as it may, the nervous one blurts out, "52 Domanda Square!," out of reflex and shock. His comrade gives him an uncertain look but he nods and points to the building. Across the square, towards the castle. "She's probably....probably busy though."

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Unread postby Seethe » Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:31 pm

At some point, Brinala managed to read the notice. The wording was slightly ambiguous- if they were checking for the unnamed skin disease specifically, then it seemed a little much to have "all persons of ill healty" report for examination. Seemed a little suspicious. In any case, Brinala had no time to get stuck in a quarantine. She made note of all the places mentioned in the notice and determined to avoid them.

As she made to leave the area, the nekojin overheard the two government healers as they passed by.

Bodies? That was some skin disease. And Brinala had quite a strong suspicion that the "skin disease" was exactly what they were discussing. It just fit too well with the suspicious wording of the notice on the board.

The more rational side of her told Brinala not to get involved in this mess. Perhaps she should even finish her business in this city and depart as soon as possible. But she just didn't like the thought of leaving without finding out what was really going on. So, instead of leaving the area, she followed the two healers, noticing as she did that a few others were doing the same.

By the time Brinala was close enough to engage in the conversation, the person wearing the goggles and muffler had already pressed the two healers into spilling a bit of information, although it was only a name. It seemed that if Brinala was going to find out any more, she would have to get involved.

Just as Brinala was going to speak up, another person seemingly appeared out of nowhere and asked basically the same question she was going to. There was something dark about the man, as if he was perhaps some sort of demon. But then, there was something a little dark about Brinala. Given her most recent dealings with demonkind, though, the nekojin was obligated to hold a bit of suspicion towards him. But of course, there was more than one faction of demons in the underworld, so this one may have had nothing to do with the ones Brinala had knew.

"Busy?" Brinala asked in response to the healer who had just given his boss' address. "I would hope so, in such a situation. But I think paying her a visit may be the thing to do anyway."

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Unread postby Nekogami » Sun Feb 17, 2008 11:20 pm

Again, the men jump. Getting swarmed by panicking citizens is one thing but getting swarmed by cool and confident strangers is another. In Doma, one never knows what to expect and this is certainly a situation fitting into the 'unexpected' group.

"Look," the strong voiced boy says finally, running his hand through his short blonde hair. "We're late for turnover. If you want to see Nasana you're welcome to try. Just... don't expect to see her. I'm sure you're not the first to request a meeting. Excuse us."

He grabs his friend by the wrist of his robes and they both scuttle nervously away from the four inquisitors. The nervous boy looks back just once then firmly fixes his eyes forward and quickens his pace to reach the safety of the guards and 10 Domanada Square.

All that is left is in the opposite direction that the two priestlings ran. 52 Domanda is an old building an a part of the government complex of buildings the line the west side of Domanada Square and the castle.

It's a three-story stone building with a green tile roof stained with algae and time. The windows look as though they've been weeping from the corners where the rain has dripped rust from the window fixtures that guard the glass from assault. There's a crowd of about two hundred outside the building with guards rushing to and fro to herd them into a coherent line but as people trailed in from all directions and others strained to chat with peers it made herding these citizens look like herding dragocats.

The double doors to the building were closed and there were two guards standing in front of each door, spears in hand. One had his eyes narrowed as he stared forward, the other was talking to the crowd and trying to maintain some semblance of order.

"If you all would just please calm down and wait patiently. It will be just a few more minutes. If you have business that you need to attend to please do so but understand that you will lose your place in line. I'm sorry!" The people in the front and close enough to hear him complained audibly. He raised his hands apologetically. "I'm sorry but-" He looked over to his comrade. "Mazo, could you please help me? I'm... ... Mazo?"

Mazo never wavered. Back straight and at attention, he continued to glare out over the crowd. At first glance it might seem as an intimidation tactic but one man knew all to well what it was.

''Private Mazo! At attention this instant and help me maintain order!''

"Mm? Huh? Oh! Yes! Please listen to Officer Sillus. He knows what he's doing!" Mazo nodded and patted a man nearby on his shoulder with confidence.

Sillus, unamused but nearly numb to this behavior, gave Mazo a nudge with his elbow and a disproving look. Mazo silently 'ow'-ed at the gesture and feigned a little more discipline that it took to sleep with your eyes open and standing straight up... Not many men could do that you know.

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Unread postby Christian » Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:26 am

"Who are you exactly? You look like no healer that I have ever seen,"

Mikail smiled politely under his muffler, which of course made it impossible for anyone but those most studious of the facial expressions of men to notice.

"Ah, that is a question simple to answer; it is merely because I am not a healer of this region of the land. For you see I am far from my home..." he trailed off, maintaining a stance of surprised and polite indignation, as if shocked they did not know of him. "And know about as much about healing as I do about being a duck." he added after a short while in his mind.

"While I'm certain the situation is under control, for how could it not be with such viligant men at its reigns, I shall seek to speak with this Lady Nasa..." he began to speak after hearing what the young men had to say, yet was cut off by the sudden appearance of Taiar. He was surprised, yes, to the point of momentarily freezing up indeed, but whatever low gasp of surprise he would've emitted was muted by the thickness of his muffler as well as the yelps from the two runners. He listened once more to their explanation and, when they seemed done, he began anew:

"Ah, I see, then perhaps we, or perhaps I, shall see to..." he managed before once again being cut off by the appearance of a fourth member to this growing circle of uncomfortable inquisitors.

"Look, we're late for turnover. If you want to see Nasana you're welcome to try. Just... don't expect to see her. I'm sure you're not the first to request a meeting. Excuse us."

Hesitating slightly this time, Mikail gave a few seconds pause before he began to speak once more. As the two young men disappeared into the crowd of people he folded his arms, the tools in his belt clinking lightly by the sudden movement. "Very well." he began, then surprised that no one else had seen this opportunity ripe for talking, continued, with a somewhat startled tone in his voice, "It would seem that this city holds no end of altruistic healers and miracle workers..." pausing again to look at the group he had suddenly become a part of, he continued, "Whilst I dare not proclaim myself leader of this motley party of... well... it would seem that we share a common wish; So I propose we move to meet this charming lady Nas... Nasal..." he cleared his throat and readjusted his goggles before, without warning or sign of it, he turned towards 52 Domanda Square and began walking there.

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Unread postby Mechanisto » Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:36 pm

Kivet strolled through the bustling city streets of Doma. His scaled, clawed feet ached from the cobblestone and tile roads. The simple club and crude wooden plank secured against his back clattered distractingly as he plodded. He was alert, of course, as he always was... but he was nowhere near as overwhelmed as he had been two days ago. Two days ago, his long journey had come to a close... though in a very literal sense, a far longer journey had immediately begun for him. The last month or so had been spent traveling along the dirt roads and paths of Doma's temporate lands. Every time he had come to a village or farm, or passed a traveler, he had struggled to overcome his bestial appearance long enough to ask for directions. He explained to anyone who would listen that he sought out the largest human settlement within reasonable traveling distance. Whenever a fruitful answer came of such delicate encounters, it was always the same; his would-be good samaritan would simply point down the road, uttering the same word: "Doma." It sounded strange in his mouth... but everyone he spoke with assured him that if he had good and decent business Doma was undoubtably the best place to take it.

Two days ago, he had arrived to a sight that had taken his breath away. He had seen villages before... even some small cities. But he had never imagined a place such as this. Buildings loomed overhead, taller than trees. The ground was either packed dirt, tiled stone, or neatly manicured grass. The people... oh gods, the people! The city was thronging with crowds, seemingly at all hours. These people had been his primary concern ever since he set out from his familiar homeland; everyone he met on the road had largely shunned him. He understood why, of course. But villagers and travelers were easily avoided... what of a whole city?

In the end, of course, his arrival was hardly the disaster he had begun to fear. The guards had eyed him a bit, and asked his business. He had answered honestly and been admitted through the gates without a fuss. The citizens had given him the occasional sideways glance, but nobody had rushed him with pitchforks and torches or anything. He was disliked, but hardly hated. The irony, of course, was that Kivet himself had been outright astonished by the city that lay before him, while the citizens of doma had largely ignored him. He had on occasion seen things that made him feel downright mundane.

But that had been two days ago. He still saw strange new things around every corner, but he no longer gaped or stared as much. He'd gotten used to walking through crowds and reading streetsigns. He'd also learned that any freelance work to be had would likely be posted on bulletin boards placed throughout the city... and as eager as he was to earn favor and better himself in the process, there were never any jobs he felt capable of doing. Hunting down organized criminals? Recovering magical artifacts? Searching for lost cats?

He sighed slightly as he walked towards the city's central square, trying to ignore the dull ache in his feet. Perhaps there just wasn't much work here for his kind. As he turned the corner, though, he saw something unexpected. The area around bulletin was crowded. And not just by idle gossipers or curious passersby, either... this crowd was concerned.

His gait sped up gradualy to match his growing concern and curiosity. As he walked, though, he caught sight of a small group of people leaving the area. Even to his foreigner's eyes they stood out from the crowd. Was it their dress and manner, perhaps? Their appearance? No... something else. Confidence. Purpose. They bore none of the mild paranoia or concern that filled the crowd. Kivet approached the bulletin quickly, shouldering his way as gently but firmly as he could. His eyes searched the board frantically, but all the multitude of papers looked the same... such tiny writing, so unlike his own native language.

Though a visual search prooved fruitless, a few words from the crowd immediately captured his full and undivided attention. Illness. Contageous. Quarantine. He clenched his jaw firmly, turned back towards where he had seen the small group go, and quickly jogged after them.

They had a purpose. And presently, that was all he needed.

((OOC: Kivet will attempt to follow and approach the group as best he can. I'm not sure where the party is presently, but I'm assuming he'll catch up by the time everyone reaches 52 Domanda Square. He sticks out a bit, so you'll likely see him coming.))

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Tue Feb 19, 2008 10:42 pm

Katherine isn't sure what to think.

One moment, she's talking to the two gentlemen on her own, intent on offering her assistance. The next moment, she's being swept along with a large group of people. People with the same apparent goal.

The man with the muffler seemed to be taking charge of the hunt for this lady, which she has no immediate issues with. He seemed far more comfortable speaking, as did the nekojin woman. Though she does find her a bit intimidating, with her dark clothing and dyed hair, her discomfort with her is nothing compared to the dark-haired gentleman.

Even a novice mage or priestess could detect the man's powerful, demonic aura. Given the city's hostile occupation years ago by demonic forces, she can't help but feel uneasy around the man. While there are cases of benevolent beings with demonic origins, in her experience that tends to be the exception, not the norm. She would need to keep an extra eye on him, to learn his true intentions. Until she is certain of his plans, she'd rather not take the chance.

Her watchful eyes on the man are interrupted, however, once the group arrives at the address they seek. Instead, they focus on the very large crowd gatherered in front of the building.

"Oh dear... I think we may have a problem getting an audience with her." Katherine states to the others.

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Unread postby Seethe » Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:34 am

"I think so too," Brinala agreed. "I guess those two weren't kidding when they said we'd be lucky to get an audience."

Judging by the size of the crowd in front of the building, getting an audience really didn't seem very likely.

"And... since this is one of those Public Health offices the notice on the board mentioned, standing in that crowd might not be such a good idea. We might all catch whatever's going around that way."

Frowning, she stood where she was, deep in thought as she tried to think of any other way to approach this matter. Unfortunately, she was drawing a blank.

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Unread postby Christian » Wed Feb 20, 2008 9:03 am

Mikail had stopped when Katherine spoke, apparantly realizing just now that they'd been walking together. He turned around, his brown hair swaying only slightly but still retaining the same shape and density of an ancient bird's nest. It was hard to come to terms with his height, for most of the time he walked so awkwardly, with crooked legs, you'd think he was an old man, his height much more manageable. But then he'd straighten up, seemingly at random, and he was suddenly towering over you. He glanced first at Katherine, then at the Nekojin, his expression blank.

"I see no problem; we are here on errands of great importance, the stakes being quite high, not to consult some half-witted do-gooder about particularly embarassingly shaped lesions that we may or may not have at the bottom of our heels." he seemed to consider this for a moment, then continued, "Still, I can appreciate the civility and proper respects needed to seek the council, and I understand you wish not to cause a scene."

He set to walking again, seemingly at a calm pace, heading straight towards the guard who seemed to be at the very peak of his vigil, Mazo.

"There is a matter of great importance I and my fellows need to discuss with your mistress," He said in a polite, cheery kind of voice to the guard who may, or may not, have returned to sleep, "Naturally it would be possible to explain it to you, but I shan't as the very thought of the time and effort wasted when it could be used to save lives makes me cringe," the tall engineer actually gave a slight shudder at the word, "In unguided devotion to the medical aid of my fellow men. If you are forced to do the tedious task of actually telling your mistress that we have arrived, do so, but it would be wise to simply tell her that the Help she requires has arrived, and in bounty. The help, of course, being us."

For a moment he seemed to have forgotten something, but then he slapped his left fist into his right palm, a perhaps far too obvious attempt to insinuate that there was something very important he had just remembered. "Tell her that she may, if it would please her, be inclined to 'Water the lilies with the dew of the unbroken morning'. Now hurry along."

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Unread postby Taiar » Wed Feb 20, 2008 11:27 am

Whether to do away with a millenium's worth of conditioning against demons and their nature or to play along with it for entertainment's sake, Taiar hasn't decided yet. Can't a demon just be worried about the general public welfare so much as to go investigating and adventuring with a bunch of random individuals for the benefit of others?

'I believe you would be hard pressed to find a human individual with such an interest in a welfare beyond his own, much less a demonic one.'

Well...The Dragon's Bane had no faith in the kindness of humanity and its kin in the first place. What he thinks doesn't count.

Luckily, someone else seemed to be interested in taking point and talking for the group, which was fine by the quieter Mazoku. It seemed to Tai though that not only did the guy seem glad to speak on behalf of the randomly formed team, he seemed more than happy to go above and beyond the call of duty and say things that probably no one else had thought of...or really, could have thought. Case in point...

"...'Water the lillies with the dew of the unbroken morning?' You could probably afford to leave that part out. We don't want to appear any more insane than we already do."

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 1:27 pm

Katherine, too, appears somewhat perplexed by the man's words.

"...Is that phrase some kind of slang from Baron, sir?" she asks the man, having noticed his accent from the region.

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Unread postby Christian » Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:34 pm

For a few moments Mikail stood still, then his shoulders slooped a bit, as if he'd lost his strength in them. His hands hung limp at his side and a strange little wheeze seemed to emit from his muffler.

Then he made an astonishing reaction by laughing, a forced mechanical laughter that utterly failed to make the impression of amusement.

"Ah but you must forgive my travelling companions." once again mirthful and speaking very slowly, Mikail scratched the back of his head as if politely and subtly excusing himself, "We had not much time to go over the code-word, which the Lady must have obviously been expecting to hear from the help she sent for," it is almost impossible to make words bold without speaking in a louder voice, but Mikail did a tremendous job at it, "You see, we had originally been taught the phrase 'When the sun beckons for the moon to cross the plains', but as it turned out this proved to have far too much possible innuendo in it and we were forced to send a letter of disapproval to the... well, to the Ministry, which dutifully changed the code to this... thing about... the watering of the... things... Which reminds me perhaps you would be so kind to, ah, tell the Lady that the... the word was changed. And now it's this... yes..."

He turned suddenly towards Taiar and Katherine, Nothing menacing about his appearance but for the sudden reflection of light on his goggles and but a hint of a furrowed brow... and a very big nose.

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:38 pm

For a moment, Katherine says nothing, just staring back at the large man.

Then she turns to look at both Taiar and Brinala, still remaining silent. However, from the look she is giving, she seems to be heavily implying something instead.

Namely, "What is up with this guy?"

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Unread postby Taiar » Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:35 pm

Taiar stares at Mikail for a number of seconds, slowly raising one eyebrow up in a rising state of confusion, then turns away and stares at the sky in an attempt to forget the whole situation and move on.

As he brings his attention back to the group and the guard at hand, the mazoku catches Katherine's look and can do nothing but shrug at her. He waves his hand dismissively, as if to say "Let's just let him do as he likes if it gets us in..."

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Unread postby Mechanisto » Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:11 pm

Kivet quickly marched down the city road, eyes scanning for the group of oddly confident people. Not altogether difficult, of course... but the problem of exactly how to approach them was still a concern. He was completely unfamiliar with the local customs and mannerisms... how would they react if he simply marched right up to them, and offered his help without even fully understanding the situation?

He wracked his mind for an elegant solution, when the group seemingly reached it's destination. A building with a sizable crowd out front, and a pair of guards by the door. He cocked his head for a moment, like some curious bird. Not much more time to fool around about it, it seemed.

He shrugged to himself, marched up to the group he'd been following, and spoke in a deep and incredibly raspy voice. "Pardon. You seem eager to act. May I offer my help? I do not fully understand the situation, but..."

He flexed his shoulders a bit, and stood a bit straighter in an attempt to look presentable; as slender as he was, he had at least a good eight feet of height on him, and veritably towered over the crowd. "...I have my reasons for wishing to help. "

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Unread postby Seethe » Wed Feb 20, 2008 11:14 pm

Brinala also met Katherine's look with a shrug, having no idea if the man was really speaking in code or if he was just crazy. If she was planning on giving any more of a response, it was cut off by the arrival of yet another individual with an interest in this matter.

The nekojin turned and looked up at the creature who had spoken. She had been a bit startled by the unexpected arrival of the large creature, but didn't truly feel threatened given the civility of his words. In reply to his offer to reply, she gave a thumbs-up and an amiable grin.

"We're all just kind of following each other around right now," Brinala explained. "I'm sure you can tag along too if you want."

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Unread postby Taiar » Thu Feb 21, 2008 9:40 pm

The new voice caused Taiar to do something he wasn't too used to doing; look up to take in the entirety of figure. The diversity present in Doma meant that Kivet's form wasn't too much of a surprise to the Mazoku; he almost chuckled to himself at the strange gathering of people here with an interest in solving this disease issue: A Nekojin, A Lizardman, A White Mage, A Demon, Whatever the engineer guy was underneath that muffler, that coat, and the covering of grease...

...Presumably some kind of human.

"You caught us at a good time then. Hopefully this guy's silver tongue is about open up the doors; the rest of us seem to be going for the ride. I'm sure one more won't hurt."

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Unread postby Nekogami » Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:54 pm

Mazo listened to Mikhail very carefully. He nodded as the the engineer spoke and rested his chin on his fingers thoughtfully, occasionally inclining his head as if to catch the sound of his words better. When Mikhail finished, Mazo nodded absolutely in agreement.

"I completely understand, sir. Just a moment," he said politely with a slight bow. He turned and tapped Sillus on the shoulder. The fellow guard was watching Mazo curiously while trying to attend to a woman who was trying to show him a lesion on her arm. "Sillus, a moment please?"

Sillus excused himself and walked over to the group and Mazo. "Yes, what is it?"

"This fine people are Secret Health Associates here to discuss the matter with Lady Nasana."

The more experienced knight looked over the group carefully. They weren't even dressed the same, how could they be Secret Health Associates? And what was a Secret Health Associate? "I don't think-"

Mazo put his arm around his friend and comrade. "Look, they know the code word..."

"What code word?" Sillus sighed. "Look, Lady Nasana has stepped out for her well deserved lunch break and she won't be back for an hour. If you want to meet with her, you'll just have to wait in line. I'm sure ...whoever you all are, that you can wait. There is very little need for hired mercenaries..."

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Unread postby Christian » Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:34 am

"I see, lunchbreak." Mikail gave an almost unnoticable shrug as he tried to ignore to low grumble of a stomach devoid of foodstuff and angry because of it.

"How unfortunate." His mind was grinding away at what few words had been exchanged by the two guards, the hushed talking from his comrades a background noise that made him grind his teeths slowly, methodically as if he was crushing a particularly bothersome seed.

"You understand, of course, that as representatives of the... ahh... Secret Health Association, we would require to..."

This was becoming a dilemma for the engineer who, understandably, knew very little of the workings of the machinations of the human body. He'd been hoping one of the others of his companions would have come up with some grandious explanation for the utter importance of their presence in the compound, yet none had stood up to the task... It couldn't be that they assumed he was competent enough to handle...?

"Well, I'm not certain about some of my fellows, but we have travelled some distance to be of aid, I'm sure a measly hour is time we can afford to dilly dally. It is certainly not as if the lives... or at least the, ah, general public's quality of integument," the term was complicated enough, hopefully, as in his line of business it was rarely used to describe those parts of devices employing or being decorated by skin, shell or any other natural material. Hopefully it also applied to human skin, "is at stake. Naturally there ought to be notes taken, subjects examined and tubes filled with... samples... of the most horrible health problem that has stricken this land." He was running out of adverbs fast. "Of course, we understand if precedence requires that you do not permit us access to such critical inventory without the authorization of Lady Nasana, and we will simply wait here in line as you continue to inspect suspiciously shaped lesions."

He stood still for a moment, swayed again and then gave a sniffing kind of snort before turning to his companions, his cohorts, his anonymous benefactors.

"Perhaps it would be best if we step into the line," he said thoughtfully, once more dropping into his slightly slouching way of standing, "and introduce ourselves to each other, as I would quickly grow bored and annoyed at having to use self-invented nicknames for you all, although..." his eyes seemed to fall upon the lizardman, "for some of us a nickname would perhaps be easier to remember." He seemed a tad bit disturbed by the newest addition to their crowd, a kind of steely dislike mingled with a hint of curiousity in his otherwise, now that he was no longer trying to convince the guards to let them in, monotonous and almost machine-like voice.

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Unread postby Seethe » Sun Feb 24, 2008 1:56 pm

The first guard's reaction surprised Brinala. So this strange man actually was speaking a code word. She watched in anticipation as the guard moved to speak with his superior.

The second guard's reaction, however, was most disappointing. Luckily, the second guard didn't arrest the entire group for impersonating government agents.

The engineer suggested that they step into the line, but Brinala had a different idea.

"Name's Brinala," she answered, but then moved to address the more gullible of the two guards.

"If I have to wait, I think I'll stand away from the line," she said. "I have no diseases presently, and I do not particularly want that to change."

Then she lowered her voice so that only the guard could hear.

"Especially considering what your two runners blabbed about the... outcome of this disease. They hold their private discussions a bit too loudly when passing through crowded areas."

And then, returning her voice to its normal volume:

"But I am sure Lady Nasana would not want to be wasting time in a situation like this. If you would tell us where she goes on her lunch breaks, we could introduce ourselves to her without detracting from the exceedingly vital functions she performs here. Though we may be the most competent healers, investigators, and muffler-wearers in the world, I still would not want to be the one blamed for distracting her for even one second from the work she does here."

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Unread postby Nekogami » Sun Feb 24, 2008 11:03 pm

Mazo considered Brinala for a second and opened his mouth to speak but Sillus quickly slapped an un-gloved hand over his partners mouth. Sillus examined Brinala and group a bit more closely.

"If you aren't bounty hunters, then who do you work for? There isn't a Secret Health Association in the Doma government that I know of..." He looked at Mikhail, the impromptu leader. "And what is the purpose of a Secret Health Association?"

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Unread postby Seethe » Mon Feb 25, 2008 12:49 am

Uh, oops. Brinala mentally kicked herself for not waiting until the two guards had moved away from each other. Now there was a bit of a mess, and she needed to get out of it quick. Time to lawyer it up.

"Well, you see, we're not a government organization," she quickly answered, covering her tail against the most serious of the possible charges. "We're a private organization, recently formed, dedicated to the purpose of eradicating secret diseases... You know, the ones that need to be cured quickly before knowledge of them gets out to the public and causes a mass panic."

She paused for a moment to think. Her heart was racing, this "silver tongue" business proving more challenging than she would have hoped.

"Anyway, our ministry," she gestured towards the group's "minister," the one dressed in the robes of a temple healer, "was recently told of this disease you're dealing with now" (overheard part of a conversation about it accidentally) "and so we came to offer our skills to the effort. Each of us brings something different to the table, so as a whole we can solve a wide range of problems. For example, we have a healer, whose use is, of course, obvious; and we have myself, an archmage from Gunnir, quite knowledgeable of the arcane and quite capable of... research and... investigation..."

And she trailed off. But only for a moment, to consider what she needed to do now. Create some plausible deniability for that "secret code" business, perhaps.

"Of course, I suppose it's possible that... the Doman Government didn't send us the message that led us here," she admitted. "It's not unheard of that a troublemaker would send a fake message under a false identity, after all. If that's the case, then... well... it's a real inconvenience."

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Unread postby Nekogami » Mon Feb 25, 2008 8:12 am

Sillus considered this information he had just received. His thought process visible in the lines on his forehead and the frown of his lips. He looked up at Brinala, Mikhail, Katherine, Kevit, and Taiar considering them each carefully.

"Look, we've got to get back to these crowds..." He hesitated. "She's at the Ivory Horn,' he answered in a hushed voice.

Mazo removed Sillus' hand from his mouth. "She sits on the second floor. She likes the view of the tree from there."

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Unread postby Christian » Mon Feb 25, 2008 11:02 am

Mikhail*, who had been up until now watching the exchange between Brinala and the guards in silence, his arms crossed over his chest, suddenly slapped them together, rubbing his gloved hands as if he'd just made a particularly nice deal. A few of the tests in his hair jiggled by the motion, yet his hairstyle seemed more like a badly-designed wig than real organic hair.

"Excellent. Most excellent. I had girded myself for a long and dreadfully uninteresting wait in this line of disease-ridden peasants, but indeed the resourcefulness of my comrades in arms amazes even me." the last part had been said as the group had begun to move away, yet possibly audible enough for one of the guards to snap it up, not that the Engineer really cared.

"I do believe, however, it is my turn to introduce myself and I will do so." He swiveled around on the heel of his left foot, as if doing a little dance and came down in a deep, surprisingly so due to his length, bow, his left arm outstretched and his right against his chest. "As some of you have discerned, whether it be due to my way of talking, moving or radiant personality, I am Mikhail Veldrin of Baron." he rose from the bow like how a tree falls, but in reverse. For a moment it seemed as if he would continue; indeed, perhaps some tidbits of his past in Baron, why he was here and why he wore a discoloured jumpsuit under his trenchcoat, but he said nothing.

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Unread postby Mechanisto » Tue Feb 26, 2008 11:46 am

Despite the multitude of questions that bubbled into his mind, Kivet had made an effort not to interrupt the preceeding bit of diplomacy. He doubted he would have been able to add anything useful, at any rate... but he still felt aukward at having remained silent. Surely there must have been something he could have done... at least to have expressed polite appreciation.

Ah! of course... his eye-ridges perkes slightly as he remembered the gesture of friendliness the nekojin had offered himself. Surely that wouldn't do any harm. He offered the guards a the same "thumb-lifting" gesture and proceeded to bare a row of predatory, razor-sharp fangs at them for a moment.

He turned back to follow the group as it departed. He spoke, but in a tone quiet enough that his gravelly throat rendered the words almost inaudable. "This person we seek. Does he know of this 'quarentine'? And why it has been declared? And more important, do we know what type of tree to look for? Shape? Color? Size?"

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Unread postby Taiar » Wed Feb 27, 2008 1:39 pm

Well, Taiar couldn't lie to himself; Mikhail's way of talking, way of moving, and his radiant personality certainly did say something about who he was. It may have been more helpful if his body spoke in a language he could understand though instead of moving about in the spastic physical equivilant of ape grunts and ooks.

...Which Tai was ready to concede, was a language. To someone. Or something.

The mazoku raised his right hand to his brow in a half hearted salute to the Baronian figure as the group retreated. His mouth began to frame the words of his own name before the lizardman newcomer came out with his questions. Just as well; Tai wasn't sure how someone from Baron would react to travelling with a one-time-terrorist to his country.

"Ah...The tree we're looking for actually grows through the middle of a tavern; The Ivory Horn. S'a pretty popular place around here."

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Unread postby FF Fanatic 80 » Thu Feb 28, 2008 7:23 pm

Katherine can hardly believe it.

Moments ago, she thought she was alone in trying to help these people. Now, several people were desperately trying to find a way to help as well. All within such a short period of time.

This cannot be a mere coincidence.

She closes her eyes in silent prayer, appearing lost in such as the group points her out to the guards. In her mind, she finds words of thanks for the Goddess.

Mother of all, thank you for your blessing and guidance in these dire times. And thank you for guiding all of us together, so that we may work together. I swear on my faith to you, I will protect your precious gift of life with all that I have. We will find a way to save these people.

She opens her eyes back up, smiling at her prayer and good fortune.


...and then she notices the group is starting to wander off.


"Eep!" she squeals, picking up her robes and running after the rest of the group.

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Unread postby Seethe » Fri Feb 29, 2008 4:01 pm

Brinala followed along with the group towards the tavern. Apparently the attempt to get everybody to reveal their names hadn't met with much success, as only herself and the person who had come up with the idea had responded to it.

The demon mentioned that the tavern was a popular spot in this city. Brinala nodded.

"Yeah, I've been there myself," she said, looking up at the lizard person to respond to his questions. "Finding it won't be a problem. Finding the person we're looking for... well that might be a bit of an issue. We didn't really get a description of her."

At least they knew what floor they would find her on. That would narrow their search somewhat.

"But it's a pretty sure thing she knows about the quarantine. As for why it's been declared, that's because there's some kind of disease they want to keep from spreading. What kind of disease that is happens to be what we're trying to figure out."

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Unread postby Christian » Fri Feb 29, 2008 4:39 pm

Mikhail had been surprisingly quiet during these last... err... seconds the group had spent walking towards this 'Ivory Tower'. He looked up as the lizard-like thing spoke, a slight but noticeable shiver running through his body, as if a jolt of electricity had run through him. When Katherine caught up after falling behind, he seemed barely to notice, instead showing some interest in Brinala and Taiar.

"You... understand what this..." he seized up Kivet and seemed to, for once, consider his words, "individual is saying? It does sound only like the primitive grunts and rumbles of a particularly fierce rockslide, but then again I admit my hearing may not be the best. In fact I would inevitably recite a small joke about it had we had the time to gotten to know each other better. Which we haven't, as some of us have wisely chosen to withhold such delicate information lest one or more of us may be serial murderers or tax collectors." he suddenly threw a hand up to his hair, flattening it with an almost maddening fervor towards the left side of his skull, parting it with a wildness one usually reserves for the bludgering-to-death of one's long-time rival. When finally he had what could be described as a parting, he continued. "I must say it is interests me to know the reasons for why you are all so willing to partake in this heroic deed of playing the good samaritian. Perhaps you will not consider this as much an infringement of your personal sphere as a request for your names, but should it be so I feel it is in your right to deprive us of yet more tidbits."

The tall, lanky engineer continued his walk in the direction they were going, humming for himself.

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Unread postby Mechanisto » Sat Mar 01, 2008 12:01 pm

Kivet blinked several times in rapid sucession after Mikhail gestured towards him. He did his solemn best to try and understand the maelstrom of words that had followed thereafter. It wasn't just that there were a lot of words (though there were. So... many... words). It was that they were words he'd never heard before; a serious enough problem for someone who spoke common as a second language. He picked his way through the newfound lattice of language like a newborn hatchling trying to navigate a hawthorn bramble field. But ttry as he might, much of what was said remained a mystery.

He stared at Mikhail blankly for a moment as they walked, and then perked an eyeridge and gazed up at the horizon as if lost in thought for a moment. He turned back to Mikhail then, and began speaking. "I promise, I am no rockslide; your ears will not be crushed to death. And I do not intend to *play* at being a good samaritan; I am not an actor or a liar. As for your accusations, I swear to you that I am not a tax collector; my personality sphere will surely make this obvious as you get to know me."

He lowered his head a bit, his brow furrowing as if on a more serious note, and continued before anyone could interrupt him. "I understand you question my character, but I promise my intent is honest. My tribe lives within a small jungle marsh, very wet.... very rich with life. Very much plants and animals. Poison and disease are very common there, and my people have adapted well."

He puffed his chest out slightly, in a moment of pride, and took a breath as if preparing to tell a story. "My people have strong blood; we survive many plagues, and are very tough against them. Some of us are even immune to such things. But things are changing... strange things have appeared in the marsh, and new diseases have taken root... very different ones. Our blood does nothing against it."

"For the first time, my people are becoming sick. I have sworn to learn more of these strange diseases, and to become strong and wise enough to solve this problem. And so, I venture here to baron; to learn." He tilted his head, almost like a bird might. "I wish to learn more of this disease, and to learn how it may be stopped. Perhaps then I may help stop the sicknesses that harms my family."

He worked his jaw, and looked at the rest of the group. He didn't seem the slightest bit perturbed at the fact that he had essentially told a good chunk of his life story to a group of complete strangers.

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