Solo [Job] [The Den] What Ploys Lurk in the Dark

Alistair carries out his assignment, uncovering a horrible plot in the process.

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

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[Job] [The Den] What Ploys Lurk in the Dark

Postby Alistair Vaetryn on March 25th, 2016, 3:51 am

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13th~16th, Spring, 516AV
A night with a high moon. Bright, glistening, pale. It reminded Alistair of a local rhyme.

Moon light, moon bright. How many more shall die tonight? One man pushed down from a roof, two more trampled under hooves. Three were stabbed by Daggerhands, four more poisoned by Night Eyes' men. Five died to the Sun's Birth's swords, six more...

Alistair couldn't remember what followed. He grunted, sweat rolling down from his brow. Wes huffed for breath, the fatigue obvious in her movements. They held their backs against each other, blades clutched in hand. There was blood, but it wasn’t his. When it all began, they were two, and the others were six.
Now two bodies lay next to the duo. They were two, and the others four.



“Our men have reports of ambushes awaiting them in the Den, the third one this week. Already three good Dragoons have been lost to these cowards. One of the survivors from the last attack warned us that they had organised attacks in unclear numbers. We’ve garnered that these cowards only show themselves when the Dragoons are few, so the last few parties we sent to rat them out returned us nothing.” Jorick informed Alistair after the day’s training.
“I’ll be entrusting this assignment to you and Wes. Find out their motives, who they work for. These are no common thugs, don’t get yourselves killed.”

Thus Alistair and Wes spent most of the next few evenings strolling around the Den. Their aimless wanderings lead them nowhere in particular, but they took care to walk into the shadiest looking alleyways possible. They took turns in places they weren’t supposed to, walked into dead ends on purpose. They acted the fool as if they were Noblemen visiting Sunberth for the first time. They hope that whoever staged the ambushes were watching.

The six men appeared while they were purposely crossing into another shady-looking alleyway. Within the evening, the duo have walked in and out of seventeen alleyways, (Wes kept count out of sheer boredom) and halfway through the eighteenth the thugs showed, three of them blocking each end. In hindsight, it was probably a bad idea to have baited their ambush in a two-ended alleyway. While the fish took the bait, it left the duo facing danger on both sides. Thankfully, the alleyway was painfully narrow, only wide enough for two men shoulder to shoulder.The six wouldn't be able to surround them.

Alistair snapped his fingers, the tell-tale sign of his annoyance. The duo unsheathed their weapons. Dark. Alistair thought. Dark and too narrow. The darkness he could overcome, there were torches burning beyond the two ends, just enough light for their eyes to make out what they needed to. It was blurred, but good enough. The width of the alleyway however was too narrow for the length of his sword. Huge disadvantage, a disadvantage I shouldn’t have allowed to exist.

“We fucked up, didn’t we.” Wes gave a bitter smile.
That we did. Alistair thought to himself. “No matter. Stall them for me.”
Wes gave a nod. At least, that’s what Alistair thought she did. There was no taking his eyes off the enemies in front of him.

The six men had their faces covered in identical cloth. One was built as if a brick house, another tall and brawny. Aside from the two, the others seemed quite unremarkable. They were all armed, with each man carrying at least two weapons. There was snickering, lots of cold, wretched laughter.
“I’ll ‘andle this one, these dra’oons ‘ill be a piece ‘o cake.” One of the men announced. “Cers! Get them!” Two of them charged toward the middle. Strangely, the others only watched.

Alistair heard Wes dash out to meet the menace on her end. He greeted his own opponent with a quick thrust. The man kicked off the side of the wall and swung down his shortsword. Alistair danced a step back and parried. Sparks flew, lit up their faces in the dark. For a brief moment Alistair looked into the man’s eyes; cruel murderous eyes, with pupils like slits. Somehow he knew that under the cloth the man wore a wicked grin. Darkness came again. Alistair slashed toward the man’s left, a narrow slash to avoid the wall. The man spun and blocked it head on. The clang of steel rang through Alistair’s ears. Sparks illuminated the man’s kick. Alistair dashed toward the side, his shoulder crashing into the wall. The man lost his balance having his kick swing through nothing but the chill night air. Wide open. Alistair let go of his sword, the man having forced it into a useless position. He clenched his fist and bashed it into the man’s chin. With the other he unsheathed the dagger at his waist and blindly thrust it up into the man’s gut, all in the blink of an eye. With a twist of his wrist he wrung the blade inside of the man then yanked it out.

The man howled, but only for a moment. Alistair made sure of that. Another thrust into the throat, and all he could hear was a wet gurgling, then silence. He kicked the lifeless body away from him. It flopped to the ground with a dull thud.

I had to kill him. It was him or me. Alistair turned around, just in time to see Wes slash off an arm from the man. She followed with a hack at the legs and, with a cruel flash of the blade, severed the man’s left ankle. Alistair picked up his sword and stepped back to her, slowly, his eyes still fixed on the other two at his end of the alleyway. There was blood spattered all over him. Sticky, overwhelming blood.

“Almost got me good. Bastard grazed my neck.” Wes confessed. “An inch deeper and I’d be there instead of him.” She huffed through her words. The limbless, footless man on the floor was still alive, just barely. Alistair thought he could hear her heart pounding. Or is it my own heart? The clang of steel still rang in his ears, refusing to leave.

Alistair grunted. Wes huffed for breath. Now they were two, and the others four.
"How many do you think will die tonight?" Wes asked between her breath.
Alistar grinned. "Six. At least six."
Last edited by Alistair Vaetryn on April 3rd, 2016, 6:40 am, edited 8 times in total.
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Alistair Vaetryn
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[Job] [The Den] What Ploys Lurk in the Dark

Postby Alistair Vaetryn on March 25th, 2016, 8:58 am

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23rd Bell. 16th, Spring, 516AV
“I see there’s some skill in the two of you. Sadly, we’ve got orders to dispose of any members of the Sun’s Birth.” The brick house man announced to the duo. “Now, this could go either two ways. Either you try kill the whole lot of us, fail, and we slit your throats…Or you kill yourselves and save us the trouble.”
“Who do you work for? Why do you want us dead?”
“You’ll know when my blades halfway across your throat.” Brickhouse snickered. The other men laughed.

“Which way?” Wes whispered to Alistair under her breath.
“I’ll tend to the big one. You hold off the others first.”
“You make it sound so easy.” She grimaced. “Good luck.” She dashed toward the other end. Alistair readied his weapon against the two on his side. The brick house stood at least a head taller than Alistair, an axe in his hand. The other was of smaller build, daggers in both hands. It seemed only an instant before the two daggers flashed before his face.

Wretches. Alistair cursed. The man closed in on him in the blink of an eye. He sidestepped a hissing thrust toward his face, twirled back, swung, hit nothing. The blade flashed before his eyes again, at his throat. Alistair ducked and brought his blade back into a parry. The man kept coming at him faster and faster. A slash nicked him on the forearm, another sliced the surface of his leg. The wounds weren’t deep enough to hinder him, but they burned with a fiery rage. Alistair was forced on the defensive with hardly any opportunity to retaliate. He spun two steps back, regaining his distance. The clang of steel on steel rang clear behind him, the occasional spark lighting up the alleyway. The sounds were desperate more than anything. Daggers leapt toward him again in the dark, coming from above. Alistair rolled forward underneath the strike, swung his sword out. It missed, just barely. “Haven’t forgotten about me, have you?” A gruff voice asked, half mocking. Alistair saw the axe coming and swung into it. Sparks flew.

Shit. He was now caught in between the two, his back exposed to Daggers. I can’t fight like this.

Alistair swung, toward Brickhouse, a ruse. Without warning he threw his dagger out behind him. It caught the man by surprise. He jumped toward the side to dodge it. Perfect. Alistair made a pirouette, slashed toward the outline in the dark. He felt his blade cut through flesh and sinew. Somewhere on the torso. Not a killing blow, but enough for him to be out of the fight. The Brickhouse rushed toward him, but he was slow. Keeping his momentum, Alistair dashed toward Wes. Her left arm hung limp before her, wounded. She slashed and twirled into a kick, caught one of them in the ribs, sent him crashing down onto the ground. The other slashed toward her neck. Alistair leapt in time to parry the strike. The man didn’t expect that, a moment of shock passed through his face. Wes turned and cut his stomach open. His entrails spilled out from the gash. He fell.

“Enough! Time to die!” Brickhouse caught up, swung his axe down behind him. Alistair turned and parried it to the side, just missing his shoulder by a hair. If the blow was any closer it would’ve taken a good chunk of his arm off. He took heavy breaths, the fatigue and fear was catching up to him. Brickhouse was strong, strong enough to hack him in two if he landed the axe. Alistair swung after barely dodging another devastating hack, but the attack was brushed off effortlessly by the man’s axe. Wes stuck her blade into the one curled up on the ground with broken ribs, made sure it took the life from him, then rushed to Alistair’s aid. She thrust her blade at Brickhouse’s shoulder. Alistair swung at his knees, the effort forced the hulking man to retreat a few steps. Alistair saw the other man he wounded limping away from the other end, clutching his own arm.

Now they were two, and the enemy was one.

“Ha. Skryne’s got away. Once he gets word of you two out you’ll be hunted until the end of days.” Brickhouse croaked.
“Worry about yourself first.” Alistair sneered. “We’ve killed three of your men, you’re alone. How about you drop that axe and we spare you the pain?”

“Your friend’s injured, and you’re too tired to put up a fight. You think I’ll fall for that?”
Brickhouse swung his axe down. He was wrong, very wrong. Alistair and Wes had been fighting alongside each other for years, their synergy in battle honed through the countless bloody encounters. Alistair blocked the axe with the broad of his sword, locking it into the nook of the axehead. Wes slashed at the man’s neck. He tried to pull his axe back to parry, but it was caught with Alistair’s sword, he let go and barely avoided the tip of the blade. Alistair threw his axe to the side.

“You two can fight, I’ll give ya that. Not like the other ones we killed, can’t fight for nothing.” The man snorted. He slowly took his steps backwards. The duo pressed their advantage, looking for an opportunity. Even without his weapon the man looked strong enough to be a threat with just his fists. Brickhouse backed slowly through the alleyway, Alistair and Wes following him with weapons lustful for blood.

The man stepped on his friend’s corpse, and for a mere moment lost his balance. The two lashed out, Alistair aimed for a high swing, the man fell back to avoid it. Wes stepped up and stomped down on his chest, blade pointing toward his throat.
“Talk.” She muttered, a pained voice. Likely from the wound on her arm.
Alistair stood to the side, sword ready in case the man was to put up a struggle.
Last edited by Alistair Vaetryn on April 3rd, 2016, 6:42 am, edited 7 times in total.
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[Job] [The Den] What Ploys Lurk in the Dark

Postby Alistair Vaetryn on March 26th, 2016, 12:40 pm

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23rd Bell. 16th, Spring, 516AV
“You’ve no idea what you’re getting yourselves into. We’re taking over your city and you, the whole lot of you, are utterly oblivious!” The man laughed maniacally “You didn’t even know we were here until we started slitting your pretty little throats!”
“Who do you work for?” Alistair demanded.
“That’s the question, isn’t it? Who do I work for? The Daggerhands? Night Eyes? Or is it the Sun’s Birth? Does it matter in the end? You and your little gangs have no chance.”
Wes was growing impatient, she stuck the tip of her sword onto the man’s throat, just enough to make him feel the chill of the tip.
“Kill me.” The man laughed. “Kill me all you want, you’ve already killed four, why not another? Make it five. Five of us will have died tonight, and what will it accomplish? Nothing. Nothing at all! Five dead means nothing to us. Skryne’s already gone back to tell the others, they will hunt you down until you are nothing but corpses!” He turned toward Alistair, showing a symbol tattooed onto the side of his neck. It was the exact same symbol appearing mysteriously over the city.
“You know something about the symbol.” Alistair spoke, it wasn’t a question.
“The city is ours.” The man said with a murderous grin, staring right into Alistair's eyes. “The murder of your friends is only the beginning. You can try to run, Dragoon, it will be all for naught. You are all doomed.” The man laughed a wicked laughter, then suddenly howled in pain as Alistair chopped his hand clean off. Wes almost shrieked.
“You’re talking a lot.” Alistair said, holding up the severed hand. “But not what we want to hear. You want to say a bit more now?” I have to do this. We need to find out, before his friends come back. He stomped down on the stump at his wrist
“You’ll never get anything out of me…Heh.Heheh” The man was shaking, his face completely pale. If not for the pain of Alistair’s foot on his stump he would’ve fainted by now. Blood gushed down onto the dirt, pooling up under his body.
Wes whispered to Alistair “He’s going to bleed out at this rate. We don’t have much time left.”
“Where are your friends hiding?” Alistair stomped down at the severed wrist again. The man could barely talk through his cries of pain. “Nothing…nothing!” He cried. Alistair took his sword by the blade and bashed the hilt down onto the man’s kneecap. He whimpered, but still he did not talk. It’s a lost cause. Alistair thought. We’re not getting anything here.

Hurried footsteps.

He turned toward Wes, she heard it too. Judging by the sound there were at least a dozen men. “We need to move, now.” She warned. The limp in her arm was getting worse.
Alistair turned his blade and slashed at the man’s neck. The cut didn’t go through, the man was still alive, just barely, but screaming. Alistair hacked at the neck a few more times, blood sprayed all over him. He grabbed the severed head by the hair and dashed out the alleyway following Wes. The footsteps gained on them. They ran as fast as they could out of the Den and onto the main road.
They lost their pursuers after frantically running down the main road toward the Sun’s Refuge.
“So much for that. We didn’t manage to get shit.” Wes spat, panting for breath. She clutched her arm to lessen the pain.
“We managed not to get killed. And a head.” Alistair raised the severed head by the hair, it looked oddly unfamiliar now that the head was by itself, separated from a body. They were stopped by the guards at the Sun’s Refuge when they arrived.
“What in fuck happened to the two of you?” The guard commander asked after recognizing Alistair. “
“I’ll explain. Send for Jorick. Have one of your men accompany Wes to the doctor, she’s wounded.” The men scurried to comply. Jorick arrived a few moments later.
“Where’s Wes?” Jorick asked first thing, tensing up. “Don’t worry, she’s getting patched up. A nick on the arm.” Alistair replied. Jorick breathed a sigh of relief. “I was starting to wonder if I would ever see the two of you again.”
Alistair tossed him the head. Jorick caught it, slightly disgusted. “The killer you asked for.”
“I asked you to find out who he was working for, not bring me his head.” Jorick questioned. “Not that it matters now. Explain what happened.”
Alistair told him about the alleyway, about the six men. He told Jorick about how they managed to fight through them, and how one escaped. He went on to tell about how the man wouldn’t speak, how they had kill him to run with their lives before they were killed as well. Lastly, he told him about the symbol.
“All these men fall under the symbol, whatever it is. They’re all over the city, Jorick. They’re plotting against us from the dark, and we know nothing of it.” Alistair said, a fear growing inside of him. “We’ve gotten ourselves into a huge ploy.”
Jorick pondered for a moment. “Go get some rest, I’ll see to it Wes is taken care of. We’ll inform the Marshal of this in the morning. He’ll put an end to this madness.”

No, he won't. Alistair thought. This was only the beginning.
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Alistair Vaetryn
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[Job] [The Den] What Ploys Lurk in the Dark

Postby Konrad Venger on April 3rd, 2016, 8:00 am

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Nice job! Your work has pleased The Sloth!

Alistair

XP:
Tactics - 2
Observation - 3
Bastard Sword - 2
Dagger - 1
Unarmed Combat - 1
Acrobatics - 2
Investigation - 1
Torture - 2

Lore:
Acting as Bait, to Draw Out Prey
Tactics: Narrow Spaces Negate Certain Weapons
Dagger: Better Weapon for Narrow Confines
Don't Fight on Two Fronts
Torture through Dismemberment
"This is only the beginning."

Additional:
- Small cuts on forearm and leg; minor wounds, easily dressed and treated

Click Me! :
Ooooooh, this was fun! Not just the fighty-fighty stuff, but other over-arching plot you had in place. I don't know much about Royal's plan for this mysterious symbol, but you seem to have captured the foreboding about it very well.

Oh, and please make sure you go back and edit your post in the Request Thread to reflect the fact this one is now done and dusted. PM me with any questions and later 'tater!

||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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