Solo Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Konrad takes his first steps outside Sunberth

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While Sylira is by far the most civilized region of Mizahar, countless surprises and encounters await the traveler in its rural wilderness. Called the Wildlands, Syliran's wilderness is comprised of gradual rolling hills in the south that become deep wilderness in the north. Ruins abound throughout the wildlands, and only the well-marked roads are safe.

Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Postby Konrad Venger on January 23rd, 2016, 1:50 am

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15th Bell - 16th Day of Winter, 515AV - Six days West of Sunberth

"Gods, I can still petching see it from here."

Konrad looked around and, oddly enough, wasn't surprised by what he saw. Syna had risen and fallen half a dozen times, they'd covered scores of miles, he was sure, until all trace of civilization had faded from sight. No cobbles or bricks, no stink of human waste or dried blood or sizzling meat. No... closeness. No crowds and endless babble from thousands of souls, all packed together and fighting for standing room.

Sunberth was long gone, but looking back, he could still see her waste belching into the air.

Slag Heap, he thought, sniffling for the hundredth time as his runny nose started to leak again onto his lips. Knew it was big, but gods...

Like oil across water, the pillar of greasy black smoke was still puffing and rising into the sky, fueled by the scrap and shit of an entire city. It never ceased burning, and Konrad knew it well. He smiled in something close to nostalgia: more than once he'd had to make "something" vanish in that eternal inferno. Somestimes you couldn't just leave the body in the gutter; sometimes they had to disappear.

And why let the biggest furnace around go t'waste?

"I swear I can still smell it," the cart-driver said next to him, apparently intent on talking his fucking ear off, even when every conversation was one-sided. "Can you? I mean, you live somewhere for that long, I guess y'don't notice it anymore, y'know? But, when it's gone..."

Konrad tried to block out the tedious cunt but the bastard planted a seed regardless. Point of fact, he had noticed the... absence, if he could call it that. His whole life he'd been aware of the stench of Sunberth, and yet immune to it. A stank had to be pretty damn overpowering for him to notice - dead bodies? pah, that was a fragrant bouquet down some streets - and after three decades he'd just assumed that was how the world smelled.

Not to mention looked. He could count on one hand the number of times he'd been beyond the Slag Heap, the rough walls of the city. Even gazing upon the hills and woodland seemed like too much; they were dark and natural places, which to a city boy was decided unnatural. Not made by man therefore not controlled by him, not submissive to the vicious laws of the street and blade that Sunberth was built on, that Konrad lived by.

Now look at me, he thought with a snort. Ridin' in the middle of petching nowhere, on the way to a swamp, halfway across the fuckin' world.

"Money's good, though."

"Hmm? You say something?"

"Naw."


He looked back over his shoulder, hoping to dodge any other questions. Behind them, half their cargo sloshed and splashed in barrels almost as tall as he was. That cart and a half-dozen behind, all filled with brandy, port, cognac, beer, and not the shite that you got served in the grog shops that you could thin paint with. No, this was the good stuff, the expensive stuff and so, naturally, the rich men who made it weren't wasting it on Sunberth Scum.

Oh, no. This was heading to the "civilized" cities of Zeltiva and Kenash, where proper appreciation would be paid.

Not to mention a lot more gold, Konrad thought, checking the ropes securing the nearest barrel before pulling the cloth covering back into place. Then he turned back round and cast a bored eye on the rest of the caravan's cargo, traveling ahead of him.

The cargo stared back.

Misery and hopelessness of all ages looked blankly out at a world that was no longer real to them. It was not a place of hope or adventure, or even enjoyment. Days bled together, meaningless to those forever shackled and branded and bonded to others. Mothers and sons, fathers and daughters, separated by sex and worked under lash until all they were was forgotten. Until their clothes wore down to tatters and the layer of dirt they bore never left them, and the light retreated from their faces.

Leaving nothing but clay and glass where should have been life and fire. Six wagons, tall with metal and wooden bars, rocking back and forth, furs and leathers nailed onto the sides to keep out the chill and snow. Livestock had to be protected from the elements, after all. Fangor, the caravan master, had strict instructions that if any more than one-in-five of the slaves died before Kenash, the loss would come out of his fee.

No better motivation to a man than threatening his purse, Konrad thought with a low chuckle. A mother and child blinked woodenly at his face, barely even showing fear, or recognition, or concern. A cart to Kenash, a stockade in Sunberth... what difference did it make? Out of boredom Konrad let his eyes trail down the woman's skinny form, her clothes with more holes than wool. Her ribs jutted out like she'd been issued a skin two sizes too small, and the sight of it always made him feel-

"When're we stoppin' t'eat, anyway?"

Ah, another thing he'd grown to hate: having to ask those endless questions. He wasn't a caravan guard, the most experience he'd had was a few booze runs for Tall Johnny when he'd been younger. But that was for a night, and in a city. This would more than a season just to get where they were going, let alone going back, and most of it would be in the wilderness. Not a grog shop or stew pit to be found.

When do they eat? When do they stop? When do the slaves eat? How is the caravan ordered? What's his job, besides the obvious? Will they have enough food? Water? Have they got to hunt their own? How do you even hunt?!

All questions Konrad didn't know and he hated the ignorance, but hated more the fact that it gave the driver with the scraggly mustache reason after reason to open his fucking mouth-

"Eh? Oh, won't be for a while yet, I think. Couple more bells, at least, when it starts to get dark. Then we'll bed 'em down and set up some fires, have a big meal at the end of the day."

"Nothing for lunch?"

"Nah. Takes too long, unless you wanna make something the night before that you could scaarf down at noon, y'know what I mean? Now, run I went on a few years ago, they 'ad a stewpot bubblin' all day on onea' the other carts, an' come midday, they went around while they were movin' and fed ya. But I dunno if Fangor'll do that. Bit miserly, you ask me. Reminds me of..."


And so on, and so on, and Konrad turned away again. He didn't mind the information, tried to squirrel it away in his mind as much as he could, but once Stash got started, he never shut the petch up. So he turned back to the caravan, letting the words wash over him like the icy wind.

Carts and wagons and mounted men were rolling and clip-clopping in a fat serpent a few hundred yards long, as far as he could tell. It wasn't just the cargo, human or otherwise, but supplies and tents piled high onto the middle wagons. The means for them to survive, in the best protected part of the procession. If he inhaled deeply, he could almost...

No. He couldn't. Instead he smelled frost and ice clinging to his nostrils. The dead pine in the forests to his right, the salt from the sea on his left and the mud below him. Again: the absence struck him more than the substance. But then the absence just made his stomach growl and he decided-

"Oi?! Come back 'ere!"

Never something you want to hear from a slaver caravan in full crawl down the road. Konrad twisted his head round and saw a trio of scrawny figures leap down from the side, so skinny they barely dented the frozen mud as they hit the road-

-and started running like only men tasting freedom could.

"Kon?!" Venger adjusted his look and found Three Eyes aiming a crossbow at them. He'd got at the mustering point early, the sly bastard, a snagged one of those evil-looking mechanisms, along with a quiver of bolts that laughed at all but the strongest plate. "Got business!"

Konrad didn't know much about slaving, but he knew they weren't worth shyke when they were dead.

"Don't shoot, ya fuckin' idiot!"
He said, jumping down out of instinct. He knew there were men on mounts already pounding towards them, a couple far closer than him... but it felt good to be doing something, at least. "Come on and get off yer arse, f'fuck's sake!"

Three Eyes and another couple of guards did just that, one of them carrying another crossbow, though fuck knew why he thought they'd be using it. Swords were out though, even Konrad filling his hand, and they were going to get some sodding exercise out here if nothing else. The horsemen were galloping closer, the caravan was skidding to a halt, cart by cart, Fangor's roar already ringing over the sound of it-

"Bugger!"

The horsemen reared back as the trio scrambled under a bramble thicket, heedless to the thorns that flayed open their backs as they went. Konrad didn't even see them slow down, so maddened were they with their new liberty. The horses trotted and circled, unwilling to ravage their hides with rank after rank of sharp, piercing thorns. The riders were shushing them but not trying to go around, or even dismount. Konrad snarled up at the nearest as he passed.

"Geddown and help, you twat!"

"Fuck you, cart scum! I'm a man o'the horse, youse can deal with this shite!"


Konrad made a very clear and careful mental note as he memorized the man's face, then pelted on. The rustling and snapping twigs were getting further away and soon the slaves would be gone... and probably starve to death. But they weren't thinking, not clearly. All they knew was that being out the cage was better than being in it, and The Row hadn't broke them so thoroughly that they no longer even dreamed of escaping.

"Fuck's sake," Konrad snarled again, beginning to hack his way through the brambles curling nearly up to his shoulders. There were glimpses and flashes of movement through them, voices, croaking and squeaking. Three Eyes was close by, hacking with a machete while the other two brought up the rear. "Gonna have to do this by-FUCK!"

He drew back his hand and blood oozed out from a fresh cut, an especially nasty thorn taking a bite out of him. Already it was starting to steam in the frigid air, dripping smoking globs of crimson. Konrad cursed half the gods he knew of and kept hacking, plunging deeper after their quarry-

Telling himself this was fuck-all like Three Eyes said it would be.

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Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Postby Konrad Venger on January 23rd, 2016, 6:57 am

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8th Bell - Six Days Previously - The Slave Market, Sunberth

"I'm still in my cups, I haven't bathed in a godsdamn week, my hand is still kilin' me, tell me why I shouldn' fuckin' gut you for draggin' me out here this early."

"Ever been to Kenash?"


Honestly, sometimes Three Eyes seemed like he forgot whom he was talking to. Konrad cleared his throat into the gutter and contemplated carrying out that exact threat. Being surrounded by the moans and human sewage of The Market was hardly what he considered a good start to his day... and by the way, that start shouldn't have been for a fair few more bells after the night he'd had.

"What in the fuck are you babblin' about?"

"Heard tell of a job, at The Establishment. Outta town thing, onna' caravan. Slaves and booze, headin' to KenaSHYKE!"


Sozzled as he was, Konrad wasn't slow. Three Eyes' words died in his throat as a gnarled hand shot out and grabbed him by the lapel, forcing him back against the wall with a curse. He didn't need to look down to see where Konrad's other hand was. He couldn't see it; that was the biggest indication of where it was resting.

"You sent that boy t'my place for [b]this?"

"L-Look, s'a good job, pays well-"

"Ah ken get a good job, that pays well, and not have to go humping out in the fuckin' wilderness babysitting a' godsdamn caravan, you asshole!"

"Then why ain't you got it?!"[/b]

That gave him pause. Perhaps not the undeniable truth in the statement, so much as the fact that Three Eyes was showing some spine. That always made Konrad curious, and not so stab-happy. He'd known the stubby little ganger for going on twenty years, since he had a name that both of them had almost forgotten and his face wasn't besmirched by that stupid, ill-advised tattoo.

Now he was looking up at Konrad with steady eyes, face a sweaty mess, trying to keep it together, knowing that looking around for help would be useless. You minded your business in The Berth. Doing otherwise got a man in trouble.

He had a window, but he knew it was closing.

"L-Look, I know you ain't had steady work all season. Purse is gettin' light, right? Things bein' as they are in the Winter, that's gonna slow down even more and you know it-"

"Still don' 'splain why in the hells-"

"Cuz this could set us up, man! C'mon, this is payin' serious coin! An' we get the rate going and comin' back, y'hear me?"

"What's the rate?"


He had him. Three Eyes knew that once a man started asking about numbers, figures, solid details, he wasn't just throwing the idea away. So he adjusted his stance as best he could with Konrad Venger still gripping his shirt.

"F-Four mizas, every day, and we're lookin' at a hundred days, at the bottom, to get t'where we're goin'. Food an' drink'll be paid for, they gotta take care of the guards. C'mon, Kon. Two seasons, there and back, and we clear up for the whole year. Tell me the last time you had a payday like that starin' you in the face?"

Konrad didn't gut him, but he didn't let go either. He was still save for the heave of his chest as he sucked and exhaled, sneer fastened to his face, eyes still raging. He'd have liked to spit the words back at Three Eyes and tell him he was full of shit; maybe thrown him a beating just to ram the point him. But the purse in his pocket was light, so light he barely even felt it resting there. Work had been harder to find and maybe, just maybe...

He let go, but shoved Three Eyes back as he did. No. Not the time for fucking introspection. Instead his gaze narrowed and he put some pieces together that weren't sitting quite right. The fact he'd been sent for, and Three Eyes had wanted him to be here.

"You told 'em you could get me on board, didn't you, Eyes?"

The presumption was enough to get Three Eyes sweating all over again. He knew from bitter history that no-one presumed to hold power over Konrad. Steadfast employers had found themselves minus digits, faculties and mortal benefits from doing as much. If Konrad suspected that was his game-

"N-No! I-I jus'-jus' told 'em that-that you might be interested! Cuz-"

"Cuz they wouldn't take you on alone, not without me,"
Konrad finished for him, taking a stab in the dark and getting his reward in the form of Three Eyes not meeting his gaze. "Because I'm the one with the scary-ass rep and you ain't. That about right?"

No man liked to be called lesser by another, but Three Eyes knew he didn't have much of a choice. Fangor had asked about Konrad, knowing about their long association. Eyes was no slouch with a blade or a broken bottle, but Konrad... he scared people. All he had to do was walk in a room, wearing that hat and those scars, and people straightened, if only for a moment.

The man burned down a gambling house rather than just bust it up. He was a monster with that sword of his and a flat-out nightmare when he was backed in a corner. He killed on a whim and still had the smarts to be walking around... and even with the fall of the Daggers and Robern, had survived the turmoil on the streets. Sunberth was full of street daemons, and plenty were worse than Konrad... but he was the one Three Eyes knew.

And the one whose name he'd dropped.

"Y... Yeah. That's about it."

More staring. More silence. More wheels turning and his fucking hand was still on that damned kukri at his back. He stared so long and so hard that Eyes started to wonder if he was still drunk enough to just say "petch it" and spill his guts over his boots-

"Five."

"Huh?"

"Five a day. For me. You can ask for more if you want, but... oh,"
his tone slid from iron to sarcastic in a blink, and he leaned a little closer. "You ain't the one they want, are you? Good luck wi' that."

Konrad savored the look of injured pride soaking the gutter-merk's face. Serves him right, fucking presuming to know what's best for him. But he'd talked him round, so he should be happy; with that and the fact his intestines were still on the right side of his skin. He let go of his kukri and straightened his coat, nodding at the bustling Market and the cacophony of slavers and middlemen within.

"Man with the job in there?"

"Yeah,"
Three Eyes said, voice more of a gasp than anything else. "Fangor Miltrox. Know 'im?"

"Of him. Slaver. Brotherhood. Ain't work for him before."

"Well, he's collecting marks on a paper for guards. Got about a dozen, wantin' a dozen more, I think."


Konrad was already strolling away, forcing him into a trot to catch up. He spoke without looking back or down, eyes on the rush of humanity carefully avoiding the tall, vicious-looking figure in their midst.

"What'll we be doin', anyway? Same shit like with booze runs? Be seen, scare off trouble, keep an eye on the cargo in case the help gets any stupid ideas?"

Three Eyes managed to inject some optimism into his voice. Konrad was on board, meaning he was on board, and more mizas were heading for his pocket than he'd seen in years. He spied Fangor's shaggy mane through the crowd, talking with a bunch of familiar faces. Men who sold their sword.

"Pretty much, I think. Gonna be sleepin' in a tent instead of the Quarter, but apart from that... same old, same old."

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Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Postby Konrad Venger on January 23rd, 2016, 8:56 am

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"'Same old, same old', my fuckin' arse."

Konrad spat the words like a tumor as he finally broke free of the brambles. His duster was pitted and slashed in a dozen places, and he could feel the dull sting of the thorns splitting his skin in half of them. Three Eyes blundered in behind him but Konrad was already off again, the three slaves pelting across the brush towards the looming rank of trees.

Already the caravan was a dull rumble behind them, a series of braying animals and shouting men. Gods, they'd have to drag the bastards all the way back.

"Keep up, ya shit!"

The slaves were desperate and it gave them speed, strength they didn't know they still had, but they were still subject to the reality of their bodies. They'd been shacked for days, even seasons; fed slop and barely been allowed to move. They weren't ready for this much exertion, and as he ate up the distance between them, he could see them start to slow, exhaustion creeping up their legs-

"Go! Keep going!"

One of them stopped suddenly, streaming sweat, resignation mingled with anger as he turned to face the bastards chasing them down. Konrad knew the look: a man who knew he couldn't escape, but he could sell his life dearly, die free and without steel clamping him any damn place.

Ain't gonna be that easy, boy.

The slave picked up a hefty branch from the ground and ran at the, screaming, his two comrades not even glancing behind them. Did they even hear him? Probably. Did they care? No. They still thought they could get away, and if he was stupid enough to stay behind, that was on him.

"Bastard!"

He swung it like a club as Konrad reached him, and his kopis jerked up to parry it. The runaway was so weak that the impact sent him staggering, branch barely grasped in his hands and-

-Konrad wasn't about to give him a chance. His clenched fist backhanded across his face and he spun to the ground, semi-circle of blood flying from his mouth along with a tooth. He landed hard and Konrad kicked him in the guts, enough to double him over in the dirt and keep him there.

"Take carea' him," he yelled to no-one in particular, already breathing heavy and yet still running again, the other two taking full advantage of the precious time the third had given them. "Eyes, you stick wi' me!"

On they ran, so on he pursued. Syna was swallowed over his head as the slaves plunged headlong into the forest. Konrad cursed and shook the sweat from his face as he followed them, coming hard on the closest. A female, stumbling over fallen debris of the woods, casting looks back, horror growing with every look until she did once more and screamed-

-seeing Konrad flying at her in a tackle-

-slamming them both to the ground and rolling them over until he was straddling her, this human horror with eyes like coals glaring down-

"P-Please, don't-"

Konrad punched down, hard. Maybe harder than was necessary. He felt something break under his knuckles and liked the sensation.

"Stupid! Fuckin'! Bitch!"

"Ofera?!"


Three blows was enough to render her nearly insensible, blood oozing from her mouth and nose and at that cry Konrad jerked his eyes back up. The final slave, a man with years on him, branded on his face and chest, had actually stopped, gazing back with horror, torn between freedom and... whoever this woman was to him-

Then Three Eyes and the Crossbowman Konrad had seen earlier ran past him, bearing down hard. He turned and the bowman threw up his weapon, finger pressing the trigger just as he started to run, just as Konrad yelled-

"Wait-!"

Too late. The bow twanged and the bolt flew straight and clear and-

-punched through the slave's thigh, sending him sprawling down with a thin screech of agony. Konrad rolled his eyes as he got to his feet, pulling the woman up with him. Damned if he was going to be carrying the idiot back to the caravan. The dumbass bowman could do that. Three Eyes was on the begging man in a moment, always efficient when it came to people that couldn't fight back.

"Runnin', were ya? Run to where? Huh?! Run to fuckin'-" he lashed out and caved in the slave's cheek with the hilt of his dagger before jerking him up by his hair "-where?!"

"Enough!"


Konrad's bark was enough for him, and the Bowman turned to look as he loaded a fresh bolt into his contraption. Konrad got the woman on her feet and ripped what little blouse she had left off. She squeaked in shame as her breasts flopped loose in the freezing air, Konrad snapping at her to quiet as he spun her round and crudely bound her hands with the rags.

"Shut yer hole and get movin' back to the carts, an' if youse even think a' runnin' again, I'll take a fuckin' eye outta you an'-"

The forest growled. The sound was so deep and bass and shook every bone Konrad had that he was sure the very ground and trees had come alive. The affronted sound seemed to scrape up his skin and his neck and, yes, even he showed fear as he spun his head around to see-

"What in the...?"

Konrad had seen dogs before. Hounds. Not just skinny mongrels that got underfoot and slinked from a raised fist, but big, brawny bastards that existed solely to rip each other apart in pits. He would have taken any of them right now rather that look at the four hulking creatures that slid from the shadows of the forest with eerie silence... save for their growls.

Yellow eyes under snarling jaws. Teeth slathered in foam and yellow with the memory of dried flesh. Their dark fur bristled and pulsed with every rolling snarl and branches snapped under their clawed paws. Steam jetted from their noses and they seemed to move as one, splitting up, moving like a set of jaws to complement the vast ones they were born with.

A flurry of cries from above them, as a flock took flight. The sound was enough to snap Konrad back to reality, swallowing hard and drawing his kopis again out of instinct, though his mind screamed at him what good he thought it would do him.

"What the fuck are those...?"

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Note: As of Fall 517AV, Konrad is known only as "Hansel" in Endrykas
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Konrad Venger
Long is The Way and Hard
 
Posts: 923
Words: 1060755
Joined roleplay: November 23rd, 2015, 4:05 pm
Location: Endrykas
Race: Human, Mixed
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Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Postby Konrad Venger on January 23rd, 2016, 11:22 pm

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There was a very simple arithmetic that Konrad relied on when situations became tight. First, above all and anything else, he got his damn hide out of the fire. Sometimes that required a snarl or a sneer, sometimes a few bodies hewn and missing their parts... and sometimes it required him running like buggery the fuck away from the problem.

This, he decided quite quickly, was one of those times.

"They're called 'wol-'"

"Fuck it, tell me later!"


He grabbed the woman by the hair and twisted, so her neck creaked and her face was frozen in pain, the kind that hurt to bad you couldn't even scream to let the world know. When she opened her eyes there was a face more hellish even than those wolves, glaring down and promising agony.

"You run back t'way youse came, cunt. Ah see you do anything else, best hope these fuckin' things eat me." He let go of her and turned back to Three Eyes, noting that the four minor mountains of fur and famished intent had slunk closer. "Eyes?! Leave the bastard!"

"B-But he's parta' the cargo,"
the Bowman sputtered, even as he packed up fearfully, trying to aim his crossbow with one hand while he yanked at the babbling slave with the other. "Fangor'll have our-"

'Fuck's sake!"


Konrad took a step forward and kicked the slave away from them without another word. Instantly the wolves fixed their attentions from the plural to the singular, as it were. The writhing, wounded, madly praying mass of meat that could stave off the Winter for another handful of days. Froth and saliva sizzled as it touched the frozen ground, big beasts snapping at each other as they closed in...

... and only two of them edged any closer. Konrad knew exactly shyke about wild canine social structures, but he could see they were the biggest of the four. The bosses. They ate first. The rest... turned their eyes back on them.

"Fuck," Three Eyes muttered, looking at his dagger without much faith. "Fucker's're still hungry."

"We gotta move! They ain't gonna stop 'til they get somethin' else."


Arithmetic. Konrad did it in a handful of seconds and as coldly as an accountant would with his abacus and scales. He looked to his right and saw Three Eyes, a man he knew to be reliable, even loyal in a limited, selfish way. Looked to his left and saw the Bowman, whom he did not know and did not owe and-

Hardly a choice, really.

"Yer right-"

Bowman was so focused on the wolves he didn't see Konrad's hand snap out and grab the hilt of his crossbow. His mind was full of snapping jaws and breaking bones, so much so that he didn't react until it was yanked out of his hands and he turned, wolves insanely forgotten for a moment, face screwed up in outrage-

-in time to see Konrad rear back with the kopis in his other hand.

"-they ain't."

But not enough time to do anything else as the blade flashed down and to the side like summer lightning, ripping into his hamstring and sending him down to the ground with a screech, leg suddenly useless and pumping blood. His hands clawed at the gaping wound and twitching tendon-

"Thanks fer the idea," Konrad muttered, "Eyes? Move!"

"Y-You bastards! Fucking bastards!"


He yelled and raged but if he hoped he would shame them back into comrades (not that they ever were), Bowman was dreaming. The praying and sobbing ended in screaming, wailing like souls devoured by merciless gods and Bowman's head snapped around to see the actual devouring-

Snow-flecked coats of brown and black suddenly slashed with vivid color. Snouts soaked and limbs crunched, crushed, chews and ripped clean.

The slave's pain died with his voice, ripped clean out along with his throat by ravenous jaws, but some corner of the crippled Bowman's mind forced him to try and crawl away from it.

Until the other two were at his sides. Smaller, sleeker, they could have been females or just the runts of the pack. But they were no less ferocious, and seemed to laugh at the short dagger he pulled, barely gripped in bloody hands.

Priskil, Lhex, gods above and below, please save this poor pilgrim, please know that-

The wolves lunged, impossibly fast. They knew no gods save their Green Mother, and she had no sympathy for the weak or the wounded. Bowman screamed once more as the jaws sunk in and his world vanished in a torrent of blood and piss-

Konrad didn't look back when he heard it. He sheathed his kopis on the run and checked the clunky crossbow in his hand. The bolt was stilled nestled in the groove; the string was taut and the trigger tight.

Only gives you one shot though, he reminded himself, amazed to see Three Eyes' stubby legs powering him through the undergrowth even faster than his own.

More screaming. Cut off with a wet, definite gurgle that he heard even from scores of yards away. He kept running, kept the wind rushing past his head deafening him, one hand clamping his hat to his skull, the other clutching a weapon he'd never even fired before-

-until they crashed out of the woods and into the rolling fields before the road. The bound slave woman was stumbling and rising over and over, but sheer terror was propelling her now, until she got to the brambles and wept as she shouldered her way through. Finally she fell and wriggled like a worm, Konrad and Eyes getting closer.

The merk hazarded a smirk, patting himself on the-

-back behind him there was a crash, something huge launching itself from cover and then landing with a great smashing of wood and bark. He didn't need to turn around to know that one of the wolves was still hungry or had been denied one of those fresh kills, but he did anyway-

A monster of fur and blood-dripped jaws was bearing down fast on them, pounding at the ground so hard he could swear he felt it through his sprinting soles. Fast as he ran, hard as he tried, that creature flew like a daemon over the ground, like a shark through water.

Three Eyes yelped as he dived into the brambles, not giving a ha'penny fuck to getting torn up for his troubles, and Konrad bowed his head right before he let out a roar and joined him in pain.

||Common||Thoughts||Pavi||Fratava||Myrian||Other's Speaking||
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Note: As of Fall 517AV, Konrad is known only as "Hansel" in Endrykas
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Konrad Venger
Long is The Way and Hard
 
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Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Postby Konrad Venger on January 24th, 2016, 12:48 am

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The hat didn't last long, and that nearly killed him.

A thorny claw scraped across the back of his hand barely ten yards into his bent, ducking run through the brambles and he yanked it away with a yell. Instantly his hat was knocked off by another swaying claw, scratching across his forehad, sending blood into his eyes, his hat spinning away-

-behind-

-and he looked-

-shouldn't have.

"Fuck!"

Dira was chasing him, and the form she'd chosen wasn't nearly as bothered by brambles and thorns as him. The wolf shouldered and forced its way through, hunger-maddened eyes glowing red and yellow to match the muscle and fat leaking from its mouth. Now and then a stray point would scratch its nose or snout and it would yelp, but even that pained sound was like a berserker's roar to Konrad's ears.

It was getting closer. He couldn't outrun it. Not while he was holding-

So fucking use it!

"Shit-Shit-SHIT!"

Konrad turned as best he could, hemmed in on all corners. The crossbow was a burden, had been ever since he hit the thicket, and now he was going to have it pull its fucking weight. He grabbed it with his bleeding hands and yanked it away from the tentacles of wood and vine keeping it low, aiming as best he could.

Gods, how the fuck... fuck it, pointy end facing that way, and trigger... there!

Too soon.

Heavy as the bow felt, the trigger certainly wasn't. Just as he swung it towards the wolf closing in on him, his fingers wrapped around the little metal stub and the whole crossbow shook and trembled for an instant in his hand. The string shot forwards so fast it was over in a blink, the bolt vanishing, disappearing-

The wolf howled in pain as it slammed into it's shoulder, crunching down onto the ground heavily, something important damaged but not enough to stop it getting up again. Three legs still worked fine, and hunger drove it, tongue lolling, lips peeled back in fury and anticipation, until it lunged-

-and Konrad held the crossbow like a spear, one hand at either end, those vast jaws snapping shut around the stock and length of the carved wood. The stink of starvation blasted over him, rotten meat and stomach acids. Claws pawed at him, so much weight he could feel his ribs being crushed under them, and he knew he had moments, less than that-

Some corner of Konrad was afraid. Mayhap a large one. But beyond it and through it and above it was that same, nameless, hateful rage that powered him through the pain and saw him grab the bolt jostling next to the huge head-

"CUNT!"

-twisted it until it tore a gaping, spewing gap in that fur, ripped it clear and drew back, just missing the snapping jaws that went for his hand.

A yellow eye rolled at him. Unblinking. Unfeeling. No humanity or compassion or mercy. A pure predator, living only to survive-

Konrad grunted and stabbed the bolt through the orb and sunk it as far as it could fucking go.

"Gods, did you fucking hear that?!"

"Nah, probably just the wind. Course I petching did! Just keep going, you fuckin' idiot!"


Three Eyes was not, if he was honest, an honest man. Which obviously presented something of a problem. If he was asked why he was gathering men to him, guards hustling over from the caravan to the brambles, he'd answer that his comrade was still in there, and he could not leave him.

Because people lap up that shite. They don't even look that closely into it. They'd even applaud him for being foremost in the clutch, hacking away and making sure-

-that he would get to Konrad first, and snatch away that purse he knew was still messy with gold, and silver, and copper.

After all, Konrad wasn't going to need it. Where was the point in letting it go to waste? No way would go back in there solo, with that fucking beast behind him, but with some help he could-

That plan died quick when something without and beyond words split the sky above the thicket. It washed over the guards and stilled them by sound alone. It was agony and fury and misery and the dying of something convinced it could not. It strangled itself in the brambles and when it was gone Three Eyes could hear...

Cursing. Fluent and savage and most definitely from the Berth.

"Hells' fuck and Caiyha's Cunt, he ain't dead!"

Konrad was aware that the thing was dead, but that didn't seem to be helping him much. Dead weight was heavier than living, after all.

"Petching... bastard...!"

Three hundred pounds of dead fur and muscle stubbornly refused to budge, so it was up to Konrad to move instead. He jerked and wriggled and pushed and yanked until his upper body was free. Fortunately, that close to the ground the thorns weren't so much of a problem, and he could use the crossbow as leverage to drag himself-

"Ha!"

Momentum and movement returned to him and he got back up into a crouch, turning around and waddling through the brambles. Steady, slashing figures flitted ahead of him, and he called out to them to stop swinging their fucking swords, already!

"Tough sod," said the first man he saw, and the only one he recognized. "Got the bastard, huh?"

"Aye,"
Konrad gasped at Three Eyes, patting the bow in his arms. "Think... Think I'll keep this. Dunno when... ah, shyke-"

"Kon?!"


Three Eyes' jaw dropped as the wounded, wobbling man in bloody garments turned around and started to ease back into that thicket. Howls rang out from the forest, wild and yet sated for the moment, but would they definitely not come back down for more? He didn't want to risk it but Konrad was going back and-

"What're you doing?"

Venger tossed the words over his shoulder just before he vanished.

"Forgot my bloody hat!"

LootCrossbow, Heavy x1

||Common||Thoughts||Pavi||Fratava||Myrian||Other's Speaking||
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Note: As of Fall 517AV, Konrad is known only as "Hansel" in Endrykas
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Konrad Venger
Long is The Way and Hard
 
Posts: 923
Words: 1060755
Joined roleplay: November 23rd, 2015, 4:05 pm
Location: Endrykas
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Same Shyke, Different Dawn [Job Thread]

Postby Hwyn on February 8th, 2016, 10:25 pm

You've gotten a grade from the marvelous grading rapscallion, I know, I'm great! feel free to remind me whenever!!

XP Award!
Name:Konrad XP Award:
  • Endurance 3
  • Weapon: Khopesh 2
  • Running 3
  • Wilderness Survival (forest) 3
  • Negotiation 1
  • Intimidation 3
  • Tracking 2
  • Weapon: Crossbow 2
  • Unarmed 1
Lore:
  • Wilderness survival: Better him than me!
  • Weapon: crossbow, Heavy weapon, light trigger.
  • Unarmed: Crushing faces feels good.

Rewards: 1 Heavy Crossbow
Penalties Some cuts and bruises, Should fade in a couple weeks.
Notes: You continue to scare me in all the right ways my dear sir. Anyways remember to edit your grade requests and have a nice day
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Hwyn
Soul endowed plushie
 
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