Closed The Killing Blow

New lovers scheme the last leg of their plan

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A lawless town of anarchists, built on the ruins of an ancient mining city. [Lore]

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The Killing Blow

Postby Amael on February 18th, 2014, 1:30 pm

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56th Day of Winter, 513 AV

Sunlight filtered in through the dirty window, casting intricate patterns about the floor. Her heavy eyelids drew open, blinking away the remnants of sleep. With a yawn and a languid stretch, she turned over to bury her face into the fragrant space of his neck –

His neck. She leaned back for a moment, registering that yes, that was indeed Noven, sound asleep. Mae beamed, brushing the hair from his face. Gods, he looked so much younger with his eyes closed. With one hand, she ran gentle fingers through his tangled locks, with the intent to simply watch him awhile.

Up until that moment, she had simply gone along with the tide. Amael had been too enamored to attribute any thought at all to their relationship. What would it be like? She didn’t know him well enough to be certain. Would there even be a relationship? Feeling a sudden pang, she bit her lip. No, it wasn’t anything external that held her introspection at bay. Mae didn’t think about it because she didn’t want to. She was resigned to operate on his terms, provided they were within reason. Because if they weren’t, their short-lived affair would soon be over – and that was not something she wanted to think about.

Slightly deflated, she moved to perhaps start some tea. Amael attempted to inch her way out of bed without disturbing him, but it was a lost cause. His arms, which were wrapped firmly around her waist, had to come off in order for her to go anywhere. The gadgeteer sighed, pressing a soft kiss to the tip of his nose. ”Good morning,” she breathed, catching his inert lips in an embrace, her light chuckle vibrating against the soft flesh.

Regrettably, she broke from his arms, skin practically steaming in the wintry air. She didn’t really possess a robe or a gown of any sort, having packed light when she left home. Mae simple shrugged, having no need of the finer things, opting to wander around until she found her undergarments instead. And when she finally did, the animator moved to light a small fire to heat her kettle overtop.

The act gave her the space to really think, for a moment. While the plan had some merit, there was still a real chance they’d be discovered and were that to happen, she could very well lose her life. But not before they found Noven. No, they’d want the truth from her mouth, first. Mae looked grimly into the newborn flames. She would die before she gave out his name. But as much as she seemed it, she was no evening flower. Mae would not go into Dira’s embrace willingly, not without spilling blood. She really needed a contingency plan. Really.

With steady hands, she filled the flimsy kettle and set it atop the cookfire. Should she carry a concealable weapon, like a knife? Would it be too obvious? Or should opt for something simpler, like a cord to tie back her hair? Pondering murder, she drummed fingers along the tops of her thighs.

Was he stirring back there? Mae turned at the sound of the bed, lips twisting up into a tender smile.
Last edited by Amael on December 21st, 2015, 4:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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The Killing Blow

Postby Noven on February 19th, 2014, 7:38 am

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He was dead.

Or, at least, that was what Nov thought when something warm and sleek stirred him awake in a bed too soft to be his, with a kiss too tender to be meant for him in life. Everything felt good. Too good. He didn't even know it was possible to sleep so well, nor find consciousness in even better condition. One of his recent fights must have finally caught up to him. He was dead. Had to be. Done in by one too many angry Daggerhands after being ratted out, or ambushed by thieves who actually knew how to use the sharp end of a dagger. Maybe this was the afterlife, or his reincarnation, and the gods saw fit to relieve him of some of his excessive suffering with plush sheets and even plusher, feminine flesh.

A sultry "good morning" greeted him close enough for him to breathe in her sweet scent. Then the bed shifted as pale curves moved over his darker, listless form. He made to grasp at silken limbs, but they evaded his sluggish attempts with ease.

Nov buried his face into the spot where she had been lying and breathed deep, not wanting to open his eyes and leave the impossible comfort of the bed. The clink of a kettle being set on a stove, however, forced his senses to wakefulness as he turned to observe the Isur. Gods above, she was in her undergarments again. He couldn't tell if it agitated him more because he couldn't see her naked, or because they made him want to yank them off again, even though his body refused to budge from its cozy position.

In the end, the mercenary forced himself to get up and run through a few important facts in his head. The first, that he didn't have to cook for the children today, thank the stars. Second, that he was positive he'd felt an oncoming headache the night before. Good sleep and raucous sex, however, seemed to have held it at bay for the time being, which was a minor miracle in it of itself. It would return sooner or later though, and he needed to figure out some way to deal with it without having to alert Mae.

And third, he was starving.

Nov rose sheepishly from the bed and looked down. He was completely naked. Locating his pants somewhere amidst the mess of clothing on the floor, he pulled them on and padded toward Amael, eager to remedy the sting of morning cold against his bare chest with something other than a threadbare tunic.

"Morning," he mumbled into her hair and neck, arms impulsively finding their way around her sensuous curves. It felt strange, yet not as daunting as he'd always thought it would be. Just...natural. He was cold, she was warm. It didn't get any simpler than that. Didn't it? As such roundabout thoughts circled in his mind, the merc's stomach rumbled against Mae's thinly veiled back. "I think last night made me extra hungry," he confessed with a note of wickedness, nuzzling against the side of her jaw and ear as he did, "Got anything I could make for us to eat?"

If she didn't, he had a few things stowed away in that ratty apartment of his. Perhaps he could sneak off to fetch some produce and conveniently set back his pain along the way. Or, perhaps, that would be disastrous if she insisted on coming with him. Nov churned away in his head as he awaited Mae's response, wondering only briefly when the last time he'd cooked for a female other than orphaned ones was.


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The Killing Blow

Postby Amael on February 20th, 2014, 8:22 pm

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Some of the best things in life came easily. Mae leaned against him, closing her eyes. The mere fact they existed, inhabiting the same space… Well, she was grateful. ”Ah,” she whispered, momentarily off-balance. He could be so intoxicating sometimes. ”Maybe. Let me see…” Grudgingly, she broke the embrace, drifting over toward where she kept her rations. How long had it been since she’d even looked in there? Feeling blood rush to her cheeks, she peered inside the wooden box.

Oh gods. The smell alone made her dizzy. Bread, cheese and fruit all sat at the bottom, half-shriveled and covered in fuzz. Amael shut the lid at once, choking and spluttering. One day when she had her own place, she’d install a garbage chute and connect it with her storage. That way, it’d dump the rotten stuff, preserving the rest of the food.

”Um,” she hedged, turning to face him. ”I had food...” Sheepishly, she rubbed the back of her neck. ”I’m sorry. I’ve got tea, for now. Would you like me to get you something? Or would you still prefer to cook?” Here came the fun part. She didn’t have the first idea what he would prefer. But this was an opportunity; if she paid attention, she might get to know him a little better.

In the meantime, she endeavored to keep her hands busy. There was a little pouch of tea bags on the shelf adjacent to the table. She got to work sorting the dried herbs into small, cheesecloth bags, so that they would strain properly. Of course, as she worked, she waited for his reply. Perhaps he’d come and snake his arms around her waist. Perhaps he’d stand and watch her as she worked. Any way you sliced it, she got to learn something new.

The kettle began to howl. She grabbed cups of varying sizes from the cabinet and lightly set them on the table before moving to the hearth. Her movements were concise rather than excessive, one of many traits attributed to the Isur. They were adept at everything they put their hand to, even something as simple as making tea.

Breath hissed through her teeth. In her haste, she’d brushed the side of the kettle. She drew back to kiss the reddened flesh.

Adept was a strong, strong word.
Last edited by Amael on December 21st, 2015, 4:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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The Killing Blow

Postby Noven on February 21st, 2014, 10:01 pm

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A yawn forced its way out of his mouth as Nov folded his arms, trying to make up for the loss of Mae's warmth. It was a good yawn--the kind he used to get when...no, don't think about that. He rubbed at his face to rid the memories and a few lingering wisps of sleep while the Isur checked her supplies, wondering if this was something he could get used to. Aside from a growing, gnawing hunger rattling about in his stomach, the mercenary felt strangely languid, his body unaccustomed to the feeling of undisturbed rest and physical satedness.

The sound of a lid slamming shut jolted him fully awake. He glanced up, only to find Mae, looking rather embarrassed, with her back turned to a firmly sealed larder box. Eyeing her thin undergarments as she busied herself with preparing tea, Nov decided it would spare them both time and trouble if he, ah, "borrowed" a few things from the kitchens.

"Don't worry," he replied, going about the room to fish out various pieces of his clothing before throwing them on, eager to enact his plan once his mind was set on what to do. "I got some stuff. It'll only take a couple chimes to fetch them."

Before he left, however, Noven stood by for a moment to watch the Isur prepare their tea. She was deft and precise, as any gadgeteer ought to be, he figured. There were little cheesecloth bags that she was putting even littler shred of herbs inside of.

Stars and stones, this was why he only drank ale. The merc started to feel restless just by watching her.

An angry whistle cut through their companionable silence. Wasting no time, Mae was up and running again, bustling around the small apartment while the kettle demanded to be released from its fiery prison. Meanwhile, Nov's mind was elsewhere, his gaze following the shifting of her undergarments. Particularly, near the area of her well shaped rear.

He was already half way across the room when Mae hissed in pain, his legs moving of their own accord as soon as he'd seen her hand brush against the heated metal. With quick, careful movements he retrieved the singing kettle and dropped it onto a table. One problem down, one to go. Lifting the Isur's wrist away from her lips, Nov blew gently at the burn as he led her to the window. "Keep blowing," he said as he opened one of the shutters. Then he guided her hand to curve around the edge of the window and rest against the icy cold surface of the outer walls.

"If it gets really bad," he noted, poking his head out to check the ledge he had balanced upon not three nights ago, "you can use some snow. Like this." Nov leaned down to scoop some of the powdery ice and let it fall onto her burn. He patted it down a bit to ensure decent coverage.

Craning his neck backwards, the merc spotted his coat near their feet and picked it up to wrap the fabric around Mae's pale form. "I'll be back," he mumbled, hands moving around her waist to button the middle of the coat.

Unable to help himself, Nov bent his head to plant a kiss on her cheek. "And try not to let in any more suspicious looking blokes through your window while I'm gone, eh?"

Then he was gone, eager to get his supplies and return with something to appease the beast in his belly.


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The Killing Blow

Postby Amael on February 25th, 2014, 10:53 pm

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The very moment she so much as twitched, he sprang to action. Mae was amenable, even surprised as he took her by the hand, gusting cool air against the reddened patch of skin. Chills ran the length of her spine at the sincerity of it all. Noven had no reason to be tender, not necessarily, yet he was. It took a few beats for her to even hear his gentle instructions in the first place.

”Okay,” she whispered meekly in reply. The way the light touched his eyes, the softness of his expression… She indulged in the moment, suddenly at a loss for words. He even went so far as to lend her his coat. She hadn’t any expectation that he’d even so much as utter a word in apology for her tiny little burn. And yet here he was, caring for her, keeping her safe as if it were the natural thing to do. It was as if they simply resumed a story that’d been told a thousand times.

Maybe they had. But that sat well with her, considering.

”I won’t,” she answered, chuckling. Just before his lips brushed her cheek, she turned her head to kiss him full on the lips. ”Hurry back.” The likes of which came out more sultry than she’d intended. But again, it was a happy accident. The gadgeteer fished around in the snow, waiting until he was halfway across the room before looking over her shoulder. ”Thank you, by the way.” Her lips split in a brilliant smile. She appreciated it more than he knew.

It was only after he left that she went back to fixing the tea. Not one to let a little burn stop her, she finished the makeshift baggies and plopped them in either cup. Of course, her hand smarted all the while. But she’d nearly broken her whole arm, once upon a time. Burns were nothing more than an inconvenience; certainly nothing that could put a dent in her sunny disposition.

Before long, she was sitting by the window, still wrapped in his jacket. Steam rose in a thick haze from the cup that she cradled between her hands. She watched a group children play on the street below, some running while others gave chase. Their joyful cries echoed from the building to building. Innocence flourished it seemed, even in the murkiest of places.

Mae waited for him to get back, setting his steaming cup along the window’s edge so it wouldn’t be too hot when he returned to claim it. That was, assuming he returned at all. One never knew in Sunberth.
Last edited by Amael on December 21st, 2015, 4:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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The Killing Blow

Postby Noven on February 26th, 2014, 11:15 pm

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Nov crept along the corridor, sending fervent prayers left and right that he wouldn't meet Mae's grim, mean-eyed kin. He placed each foot with care, mindful of loose, squeaky floorboards. Jillian could smell mischief through solid walls. She'd take one look at him sneaking about and drag him straight back to work, all agreements of time off null and void.

Shyke, footsteps. Coming his way. Nov squeezed himself into a little niche with only a few ticks to spare before the toddling, whale-like form of Old Hilda barreled by. He poked his dark head out of the hiding place to see where the other cook was headed. Large, ambiguous rump roiling beneath layers of faded rags, Hilda was hefting an enormous sack of potatoes and making a beeline straight for the kitchens.

Krysus. Just his luck.

"Psst, Nov!" a small voice burst. The mercenary flinched at the sound, though his movements were largely hampered by the narrow walls. "Are you hiding from Jillian again?"

He looked down to find
Amira'sImage inquisitive face peering up at him, cheeks aglow with a third of the season's worth of wholesome food and decent rest. The sneaky runt always managed to find him somehow. Small wonder the other kids hated playing any form of Seek and Find with her.

"Get lost, Mira," Nov muttered. "I'm busy."

The girl slid him a scathing look, her silent reproach all but stating "you know I can't and that was a stupid thing to suggest." Or something along those lines. That glare was familiar enough for him to fill in the blanks at his own discretion with moderate accuracy. The merc rolled his eyes. "Alright, fine. Want to do me a favor?"

At this Mira beamed, though her expression was more wolfish than a child ought to rightfully possess. She seemed to enjoy carrying out tasks for him. No questions, no demands for compensation. Just the act itself. Nov suspected it had to do something with the circumstances of her unexpected rescue, which ended up lending her quite a sense of purpose. When a scuffle broke out in the midst of a job guarding a food cart, the girl had stabbed a thief in cold blood. She was by no means part of the team, just a shivering street urchin he had stumbled into under a rain of hail. Even crotchety old Garret had shown signs of approval for her iron spine.

Fierce little bugger, Mira was. Saved his life, too, though he was loathe to admit it. It might not have been much, her role in their brief, miserable mission, but to a kid of seven or so years it was monumental. Nov swore the child had gone so far as to anoint herself his right hand minion at some point, but Jillian brushed it off as the natural thing for an orphan to do for her new guardian and savior.

"You picked her up," the Isur reprimanded. "You deal with her. Forever."

Well, it wasn't as though Nov had much of a choice. He couldn't very well avoid her, what with both his home and income residing within Sunset. Plus, he didn't relish the idea of facing Calyn's wrath in the afterlife.

That, and she reminded him very, very much of Nona.

"Think you could get me a few things from the pantry when the old whale isn't looking?"

Mira nodded her head, stifling a giggle. "Yeah, wutcha need?"

"Eggs," he replied. "Four of em, and cheese. And an onion. Oh, and some potatoes, if you can manage."

The girl sniffed in disdain, planting tiny fists on her tiny hips. "Don't worry, me and my crew can handle it." Nov raised an eyebrow. Crew? Since when did this sly little rascal pull together her own team of miniature fiends? Gods above, he had a mobster in the making, and she wasn't even old enough to have her first moon flow.

Mira coughed, lowering her voice as she leaned closer. "I usually do these things for free, but ah...if you promise we can have Poteesy Soup again next time, I think the others will do better on the job. If you know what I mean."

The merc fought not to laugh outright at the offer. Her small face was dead serious, and it was all he could do not to blow his cover right then and there. Nov turned to the side, as if considering, then glowered back at Mira once his emotions were under control again. "Done."

A grin split her cherub face once more. "I'll go get Thomas!" And then she was off, scampering down the hall to find the rest of her "gang". Stars and stones, a crew of cunning, crafty, ruthless little trouble-making orphans. Nov shuddered at the idea. He was glad he had a monopoly over the one prize they would do almost anything for: Potato and cheese soup. Poor Hilda, who only made one type of gruel, must endure hell with this new force in town.

Five chimes later, the stout old cook was lumbering back down the corridor, mumbling about pea brained delivery boys and their inability to differentiate the front door from the kitchen door after all these petching, thankless years. As soon as she marched out of sight, a sharp whisper signaled the all clear and a subtle noise broke out in the pantry. Nov counted one chime and forty six ticks before Mira rounded the corner again, this time with three other runts in tow. They were all wearing gloating, devious smirks on their tiny faces as they handed him various sacks of treasure. Nov was impressed; one of them even contained a few links of pork, and another held a hunk of bread. "You promised, remember!" they chorused.

A second whisper cut through the hushed din in alarm. "She's coming!" Three ticks flat and the children had scrambled completely out of sight. Nov let out a slow breath as Old Hilda stomped across his hiding place a third time, grumbling all the way. Once she was gone, he leaned out and shooed impatiently at the four, leering faces that peeked back at him. "Promise," Mira mouthed, then skittered away. A fifth boy, much smaller than the rest, ran after them as he abandoned his post.

With a tired sigh, Nov hefted the sacks over his shoulder and made quick work of returning to the apartments. He stopped by his own to pick up some seasonings, then walked down the hall to duck into Mae's room once more.

She made for a pretty sight, looking out on the streets below as steam curled around her flame colored hair. The merc plopped the supplies onto the table and shut the door behind him, then made his way over to the window where a second cup of tea awaited his return. Downing the whole thing in his typical, artless way, Nov sighed in satisfaction. The liquid was still warm and traveled to his empty stomach in a slow, pleasant route.

He stared at his empty cup for a moment before shifting his gaze to the gadgeteer, who was still wearing his coat over her pale form. A question had been eating away at him for some time, and he could hold it in no longer.

"You sure you want to face Torgen?" Nov asked at last, eyes dark with worry. "It's not too late to let Isme handle it herself. He's not like the other thugs of his ilk, and I won't be able to get up there in time...if anything...if he..."

He set the cup down more forcefully than he intended, a frown marring his features.


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Noven
Taste my fist
 
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The Killing Blow

Postby Avarice on October 1st, 2014, 7:50 pm

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Noven

Skill Points
Flirting +2
Observation +2
Medicine +1
Stealth +1
Negotiation +1
Lore
The Morning After: Feels Too Good to be True
Treating a Kettle Burn with Cold
Mira Will Faithfully Do As I Ask
Mira Has a Crew?!
Worry Over a Lover

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Consequences, Injuries, Expenses, and More!
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Amael

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N/A N/A
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N/A

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Consequences, Injuries, Expenses, and More!
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Comments

Amael: Should you return, message me and I'll disperse your XP. :)

Noven: If you have any questions regarding this grade, please do not hesitate to shoot me a PM. Furthermore, please edit your post in the request thread to reflect your having received a grade.
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The Killing Blow

Postby Royal on January 28th, 2016, 5:41 pm

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Amael
Skills
Philosophy +1
Socialisation +2
Flirting +1
Observation +2
Hostessing +3
Endurance +1
Medicine +1

Lores
Waking up beside Noven
Hostessing: Tea in the morning
Endurance: Surviving a (nearly) bad burn
Medicine: Snow can be used to treat burns


Questions? Comments? Please don't hesitate to PM me!
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