Flashback Ride Across The River (Lo'Campo)

I'm a soldier of fortune, I'm a dog of war / And we don't give a damn who the killing is for.

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

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Ride Across The River (Lo'Campo)

Postby Konrad Venger on February 1st, 2016, 8:49 am

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Konrad's biggest problem wasn't the pain, obviously and thanks to the Slammer, it was the fact that he was still becoming a sodding sieve. Bloody was pumping out his leg and he was vaguely aware of the warmth, trickling down to fill his boots. He couldn't put any weight on his leg, down to one knee and his kukri, waiting for the boy to get closer-

-and then a blue the size of a donkey slammed the kid into the wall, the two of them grappling and tussling and Konrad stared with Temper-shrouded eyes, wondering what the petch he'd done that Blue Boy would want to help him.

Fuck it, ask later, he thought, managing to bully his body to both feet and waiting for the boy to show him his back. A tick, that's all he'd need. Just long enough for to split his skull open-

Three bodies dropped from the roof. Two of them leveled crossbows. For a long, frozen and oddly comical moment, the roomful of men determined to butcher each other just stared. Konrad looked from face to face and actually spent a tick trying to work out a lie.

Like what? What would work right now? Who would even try to-

"No, shoot him. We are with you guys."

There was a small sound in that tense little room, audible over their panting and the din outside. It was Konrad's jaw clicking open as the Akalak actually tried to bullshit the Birth. The boy was firing back, though, talking back and showing a lot of spine. The reinforcements were wavering between the two, probably deciding if they could get away with just killing all three and calling it a day.

Konrad closed his mouth and wet his lips. If he was quick, he could... petch it, go out swinging, he supposed. The Akalak would help, soak up omne of those bolts, but with a petched leg and a bad arm and outnumbered, he didn't know how else it would end.

Then the boy asked the Million-Miza question, and Konrad almost winced. Well, it was a good lie while it lasted... no, in fact it was a fucking horrific story that a blind man could have seen through, but hey, it's the thought that counts, right?

Konrad fixed his hat firm on his skull and got ready for the last leap of his life. He was determined to make it.

The Akalak had other ideas.

In a tick the boy was pushed in the firing line, and Konrad felt a hand the size of a ham clamp around his wrist just as the strings twanged and the bolts were loosed-

-and the boy screamed like a woman as they slammed into his chest. Konrad's sneer smeared across his lips and he felt himself yanked up like a doll by the huge man, and what the petch was he planning to-

"N, no, no no nonononono-SHYYYYYYYYKE!"

Gravity became a memory to Konrad. The street, the houses, the shops, the brawling morass beneath them, they were all just blurs as his arms flailed uselessly. The only constant was the blue smudge that had heaved him out the window behind him, and the last thing he saw was a confused face poke out the window to watch him land.

The bad news was, it jostled around that bolt in his leg like a bugger. But on the plus side, he landed on the Akalak.

"Oh... fuckin'... urgh..."

Konrad was sure he had more, but even cursing was too much of an effort. He rolled off the Akalak and tried to force some air back into his lungs. He was staring up at the sky and all around the corners of his eyes, he could see and hear warring figures.

Bugger this, some bitter voice shouting from way inside his head. Not dyin' on my fucking back in the middle of-

"RAAAAAAAH!"

A Birth foot soldier was suddenly standing over him, blocking the light apart from where his sword flashed and gleamed, as he reversed its grip and-

"F-Fuck-!"

Konrad twisted to the side and the vertical stab that would have skewered him clanged onto the cobbles instead. His body was working without him again, the legacy of thousand bar brawls and street battles. He swung his elbow out and knocked the sword away from him, knocking the helmeted figure off-balance-

-giving him an opening to kick up between the bastard's legs. Honestly. You never straddle the man you're going to kill. Because the first thing he's gonna do is-

The man's knees knocked together as Konrad's drug-assisted shin hammered up into his soft parts. He toppled, tumbled, coughing and sputtering but his hands were quickly working, gouging at Konrad's face-

-as the scarred and growling man bit down hard and felt two finger chomped clear in his mouth. The soldier reared back and Konrad flung his arm out, finding his kukri as the Birth soldier stared at the stump of his fingers-

-swung up with the curved blade and buried it in the bastard's throat.

More blood. Gods, he was never getting this fucking coat clean.

And it wasn't all his belonging to his enemies, either. He kicked the man off him and tried to walk, but... oh, right, crossbow bolt in his leg. Larger hole, thanks to his landing. His arm was starting to go the same way as his leg, too. Not just numb and immune to pain, but not responding to his commands.

"Fuck it," he snarled to himself, riding out the Slammer like his was damn well meant to, getting to his feet shakily. "Ain't dead yet."

The Akalak was still getting up, and Konrad saw, with his usual detached disinterest, one of the Sun's Birth troops that saw them land dart towards him with a mace raised high. Around them, the Daggers and Birth were still butchering each other, but the armored and uniformed counterfeit Knights were breaking. Clump by clump, man by man, they were retreating, not wiling to face the onslaught.

The fight was above them now, too. The roofs and upper windows were scenes of brutal, close-quarter, smell-range fighting as the Daggerhands swarmed upwards to rid the Sun's Birth of their crossbowmen and archers.

The battle was nearly won. The Birth were done, for now. He didn't need to kep the Akalak alive. But...

... ah, fuck's sake.

Konrad hated debts. Especially when they prompted him to tackle the mace-wielding soldier away from the Akalak, just before the skull-shattering blow landed.

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Ride Across The River (Lo'Campo)

Postby Lo'campo on February 3rd, 2016, 4:28 pm

He really needed to take the time to think about the decisions that he made in life. Now wasn't a good time, but it was noted for something to do later. Maybe while he would be recovering from the wounds, bruises, and other things that would come from participating in this battle. He didn't think that the fall would be so high up. The impact onto the ground said otherwise, his side smacking into the ground disorienting him.

To add injury to harm the black hatted man whom he had pulled with him fell atop of him nearly taking all the breath from his body. There he lay, maybe the tallest, bluest thing on the battlefield laying on the ground rolling side to sise trying regain himself. His eyes opened to see the man he had pulled with him up and fighting once more. That guy was ridiculous. Lo'campo could take a hit, even bounce back from a fall, but this guy had been stabbed, shot twice, halfway trampled and nearly squished by an Akalak and still found the energy to stand up an fight as if nothing had happened. He had to be on some form of drug.

His ears where still ringing from the fall, now kneeling on the ground trying to get up. He forced his body to move, his legs to get under him so he could stand up and fight. It was a slow process that he needed to go quicker. He had seen the man wielding the mace stalking him since he had fell. The man had gotten closer, pushing his way through the fight just to come slay the Akalak. Boy that would be a trophy for one to carry. The man was nearly standing over Lo'campo now. The Akalak had accepted it. This would be it, slain with no chance to defend himself. The mace was raised. He closed his eyes ready for impact. The blunt weapon would come down, hard no more the less. Aimed for the back of his skull. The first hit would be to render him immobile, the second to finish him. Anything after would be overkill. The road would be splattered with his blood and brains joining those of the men that had been slain before him.

A loud grunt, the sound of impact upon the ground opened his eyes to catch the sight of his shield brother tackling his attacker just before the mace would have come down. His heart started beating again. He would have to thank the man afterwards if they made it that far. Another of the Sun's Birth's soldiers sneaking his way behind the black hatted man for an attack. Not letting him being saved go in vain he charged. Tackling the man, ramming him into the wall, his arm across the man's neck as he struggled for air. Sweat ran down his face as he breathed heavily, blowing some of his liquids onto the man's face. A twirl of the lakan, a few short jabs of the dagger made the man's eyes roll back in his head. The street was clearing. Some where dropping dead, other's retreating. Lo'campo couldn't tell who was winning at this point, all he was worried about was when and where he was getting paid.

-Loxudeianis Basunreph Campo


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Ride Across The River (Lo'Campo)

Postby Konrad Venger on February 3rd, 2016, 7:56 pm

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He knew the Slammer was fading through the obvious: when he landed, he landed on the arm with the bolt through his arm and fucking howled.

Mister Mace landed just as heavily, wind knocked out of him, but he wasn't some fool to just take it. Konrad felt that heavy orb on a stick slam into his back, fresh pain mingling with the old and now his body was reacting to it, weakening as the agony in his leg caught up with him, too.

Gotta end this quick.

Konrad gripped the man by the shoulders and rolled them over through the brains and blood and debris, until a pair of bodies locked in a scene of mutual murder stopped them like a warm, wet wall. Mace still gripped his weapon but Konrad had lost his kukri in the brawling scrum. Only things he had was they were both down, so he didn't have to deal with his leg, and he was on top, crouched across the helmeted bastard.

He didn't give the man another chance to whack him with that sodding stick. His hands snapped to the sides of that helmet, fingers bent and splayed along the side of his head to steady his grip, thumb questing through the holes in the helmet-

Pushing. Gouging. Curling. Until something popped under one and the other went wet. Until Mace screamed and wailed and his voice nearly broke from the pain and the realization but he still flailed desperately up at Konrad-

-and got petching lucky.

Konrad's vision went from sharp and clear to dull and cloudy as the handle cracked him across the jaw. He supposed, in some still-sensible fragment of his mind, that he should be thankful: the head would have shattered it. But it still sent him reeling off the man, on his hands and knees, grasping around for support, a weapon, anything-

"F-Fucking..."

Then he looked up and Mace was wobbling to his feet in the middle of an earthquake. No, no, there's wasn't: that was just how screwed his vision was. He blinked, shook his head, forced down the aches and pains that the fading Slammer could not longer hold back. In a low crouch, it was the work of a tick to pull his dagger from his boot, darting forward at the blinded, wildly flailing man-

-jamming the dagger into his thigh and twisting, broad and double-edged blade ripping a hole large enough to shove his fingers through. Mace screamed again with blood and viscera streaking down his face from under his helmet, swinging wildly one more time-

-Konrad ducked under it, tackling him down again, staying too close for the mace to be of any use. Mace landed hard on his back and he wrenched the dagger free, stabbing it down one last time-

-through the Man's throat, ending his agony with a moist gurgle and an arterial spray across his mouth. Konrad spat out the steaming waste and... decided to stay on his knees.

The Slammer was becoming a memory. The pain was back and had brought friends. His leg, his arm, his jaw... not to mention the cacophony of bruises, welts and cuts across his body from everything else. He crouched there over the man he'd just murdered, watching for any oncoming trouble, ready to go down fighting if any of... them...

But "them" were no longer around. The Birth had broken. They were running deeper into their territory to fresh lines of defense, bloodied infantry limping after the fragments of their mounted "knights". The Daggers were pursuing, pouring after them with a wild yell that seemed to rise from one, huge, bloodied throat.

Konrad slumped back onto his haunches... which turns out to be the dead man's knees. For a long chime he panted and gulped and tried not to move too much. Everything hurt. Everything demanded.

He gritted his teeth and spat out most of a tooth. Bollocks to that. His body din't need another dose; it just wanted it, and Konrad had been down that hole before. Aside from the poverty, the physical ravaging, the weakness and the mental raping, he had nothing against popping back into it.

"Gotta find a healer", he grumbled to himself, as he ripped a length of cloth from the nearest, cleanest corpse (cleanest, not clean) and started to make a press for his arm.

Konrad didn't let his mind slow down, though. The Temper was going the same way as the Slammer, and wit his pain came clarity, too. Corpses surrounded them. The Daggerhands were in pursuit of their vanquished enemies, yes, but plenty had stayed behind. Faking wounds or simply resisting the urge to run.

They hovered like crows over the dying and the dead. Konrad was not going to be among them.

++++++++++


A bell later, and there wasn't peace, exactly. That word was alien to Sunberth. Even the slowest nights in the dead of Winter ended with fresh bodies floating in the river, new cripples and orphans greeting the dawn. The street in Riverside still rang with screams and curses, but of wounded men, not the dying, not of battle.

Konrad could hear that sound, more streets over. A dull, tinny roar without words or form, just a relentless static that told him there was still killing left to be done that day. But not for him.

"Hells' fuck, man?!"

"Sorry..."


The "healer" was definitely worth the quotation marks: he wasn't a learned man, a physician, just a man with some letters who'd spent years sewing up men for the Daggerhands. The gang wars of Sunberth being what they were, he had plenty of practice.

Konrad growled in the back of his throat and washed the next curse away with a belt of grog. Booze, powders and men with needles. All of them were thick on the street now, ragtag sawbones' tending to the men still mobile enough to warrant attention. The Sun's Birth boys were long dead, finished off by the Daggerhand sellswords still around. Hells, Konrad had seen some of their own receive the Final Mercy, too.

Don't want to waste healing on dead men.

"Keep off it for a few days," the man said, snipping off the thread leading to the ragged but solid stitch mending Konrad's leg. "Anythin' more n' that and they'll open up."

"Well, shyke, thanks for tellin' me somethin' I didn't know."


With some effort, Konrad wrestled himself to his feet, no Slammer coursing through him now to deaden the pain. Every twitch and flex of his arm and leg send spasms of pain rippling through him. He had to use a broken pike as a crutch, hobbling away from the healer after dropping a few coins into his hand.

Well-earned, for both of them. Big Sister had already been around, distributing the gold the men had won but surviving where their enemies hadn't. Konrad spread the wealth, knowing from experience that once healers knew you wouldn't pay for their services, word would spread and you wouldn't get them.

So when he walked, every step bought pain, true, but also satisfaction, in the jingling of his full purse. He turned his back on Riverside and headed back to the Reaches, to home, such as it was. But as he got to the bridge-

He caught a flash... no, a mountain of blue, getting the same treatment from a pair of healers. Big bastard needed that many to cover the sheer mass of flesh he had. Crutch tucked under his arm, skin in another, Konrad paused and the two fighters caught each others' eyes.

Konrad had paid he debt. The Akalak saved him, so he'd saved the Akalak. As far as ethics went, if Konrad had to say he had any, that would be it, and he'd done right by the principle. He didn't owe the man anything.

He nodded. Low and firm, enough that the Akalak wouldn't mistake it for a twitch or a suppressed cough. Not friendship, or camaraderie, any of that bollocks about fire-forged friends or warriors bonding in battle. Just the simple acknowledgement of one man, filing another away for future reference, in case the information was needed again.

It was the most Konrad could give anyone.

The crutch banged and scraped against the cobbles as he walked over the river, washing bodies and blood out towards the sea.

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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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Ride Across The River (Lo'Campo)

Postby Devi on May 2nd, 2016, 4:30 pm


Your Grades have arrived!


Konrad

Skills:
  • Kopis: 2
  • Kukri: 2
  • Dagger: 1
  • Brawling: 5
  • Endurance: 2
  • Tactics: 3
  • Intimidation: 1
  • Observation: 2
  • Leadership: 2
  • Acrobatics: 2
  • Intelligence: 1
Lores:
  • Event: Sunberth Gang-War, Winter 511AV
  • Slammer: Numbness drug, useful for hard fights
  • Slammer: The come-down’s a bitch
  • My blue berserker comerade/meat shield
Injuries: Needless to say the list is extensive. Given the healing being administered in the last post I’ll mention just the long-lasting effects. I wasn’t sure if the arms/legs were left or right so feel free to tweak that as needed.
  • Small scar on arm from the healed arrow wound.
  • Larger, messy scar on thigh from the stitched-up crossbow wound. Will ache in years to follow if surrounding muscles worked too hard.
Rewards: +30GM from wages and loot, minus healing expenses.

Lo'Campo

Skills:
  • Greatsword: 1
  • Lakan: 1
  • Unarmed Combat: 1
  • Brawling: 1
  • Tactics: 1
  • Endurance: 2
  • Acrobatics: 3
  • Observation: 4
  • Intimidation: 1
  • Leadership: 1
  • Intelligence: 1
  • Subterfuge: 1
Lores:
  • Subterfuge: Lying to buy time
  • Event: Sunberth Gang-War, Winter 511AV
  • My skilled but smelly Sunberthian shield-brother.
Injuries: As with Konrad the list is extensive but given the healing at the end of the thread I’ll just list any lasting effects:
  • Small, jagged scar on back from the healed arrow wound.
Rewards: +30GM from wages and loot, minus healing expenses.

Comments: Phew. I ache just reading about all those injuries! A good-paced combat thread - very interesting with the effects of the Slammer added into the mix. I'm curious about what would happen if these two met up again, considering the differing paths they seem to be setting themselves on.

Let me know if you have any questions or feedback. Don't forget to edit your post in the Grade Request Thread to say it's graded and leave a link in there for the Storytellers.

Happy Writing!

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