Solo Secrets and Elegance Part 3

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Secrets and Elegance Part 3

Postby Kynier on February 15th, 2019, 10:31 pm

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2nd of Winter, 518 A.V.




His gut reaction was to get away from the woman, and seat himself at the opposite end of the audience. The reason why he didn’t was because of that small itch in the back of his mind. The one compelling him to learn more about her. To discover anything that he could in order to maker her his instrument instead of continuing to be hers. From what he had seen tonight matched what he had already pieced together. The Viper had her own plans, which didn’t agree with the Daggerhand leadership’s. Whatever those were, he wanted to know.

The seats they took were only a couple rows from the stage. Ashara sat down and draped her legs, pulling on her dress to reveal another inch or two of her legs. Kynier removed his jacket and draped it over the back of his seat before sitting down next to the spymaster. She watched his motions and had an admiring smile as she did. “Why do you dress so drearily when you’re capable of looking like this?” she asked as he took his seat. She rubbed the satin of his sleeve between her fingers. Kynier stretched out his legs and crossed them while also crossing his arms.

“I would think that you’d already know the answer to that question.” There was a fake innocence to her smile as she shrugged her shoulders at him. He scoffed at her. “My attire is dependent on the environment. And I doubt they would’ve let me in with any less than this.” His eyes wandered the length of her dress. “Although, I could say the same about your choice in clothes. The dress suits you much more than the leathers you tend to wear.” His tone was neutral, but she still widened her smile and shook her hair out from in front of her eyes unnecessarily.

“It is my responsibility to look menacing, in part for the sake of my subordinates as well as for those we move against.” She smirked at him. “And it’s difficult to be intimidating when wearing something that gets most women raped in Sunberth. Cutting off balls can be so tiresome as well,” she said with ambiguous sincerity. Kynier’s stare was a bit blank as he tried to measure how serious she was about her last statement. When she caught a glimpse of his stare, she giggled.

It was then that the lighting dimmed from nearly naked men dousing more than half of the torches. The red curtain parted as several people took to the stage. It was a play of rather boring design, in Kynier’s opinion. A wealthy Sunberth man became infatuated with a whore, seeking to make her his wife. Only to have a large sum of his wealth stolen by her and her friends. When most of the audience laughed at the dialogue, neither Kynier nor the Viper laughed. There were too many instances of convenient circumstances that allowed the plot to move forward. To try and enjoy himself more, he stopped keeping track of every instance where the thieves would’ve been discovered. When the play was over it was a relief.



Word Count: 524

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Secrets and Elegance Part 3

Postby Kynier on February 15th, 2019, 10:34 pm

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The two of the politely applauded as the performers bowed and exited the stage. During that time, Ashara spoke just loud enough to be heard over the clapping. “One thing that I can’t reason out, is why you’re here.” Kynier only gave a her a side glance in response. The ovation ended and she spoke a little quieter than normal. “Independent operators like yourself don’t indulge themselves to the Scarlet Sanctum. And this is the first I’ve ever heard of you coming here. So, I can’t help but think that, it must be for a purpose.” Kynier leaned over a little to whisper more in her ear. Ashara was all too eager to listen and met him halfway.

“Have you ever considered that you might be the purpose?” That caused her to laugh as he adjusted in his seat.

“I know that I’m not the reason. Your reaction alone from when you first saw me was indication enough of that.” Another group of people came out on stage. The women wore thin fabrics that did a poor job of concealing their bodies, and the men had leather thongs. All of them had batons of varying lengths. When they had established their positions, they started igniting fires on the ends of their batons. The fire dancers began their performance and danced around the stage. Some of the feats they demonstrated peaked Kynier’s curiosity. Calling upon his Djed, he opened his Sight with Auristics to examine the fires being made.

They were not magical fires. Somehow, these men and women were spitting fire and reigniting baton ends by merely slapping two of them together. At varying points of their performance, the audience whooped and applauded. Kynier included. They were much more entertaining than the actors and their “comedy”. As the ended their show, Kynier glanced over at the Viper and set his Sight’s focus upon her. The woman’s aura was maroon and flared several sensations in him at once. As Kynier watched the fire dancers leave, he tried deciphering what it is he was receiving from the woman next to him.

First was the chilled sensation settled on his heart. A feeling, or even a hunger, to cause harm. Not for personal pleasure, there was an ember of rage deep within the cold. Next, he noticed several thoughts and impressions emanating from her. All of them too swift to understand before being made away of the next one. Even as she sat there calmly, she was plotting and scheming. Last was less of a mystery. There was a breathlessness that associated with a surge of energy. One that reflected itself in him, which concentrated itself in his loins. Kynier quickly suppressed his exposure to that sensation before the reflection in his own body manifested too much. Now he had no doubts about the looks of hunger in her eyes.

Next to take the stage was a lone female with long fiery red hair. She didn’t take the stage quickly, but slowly and theatrically as musicians in the back played a provocative tune. The Inarta was concealing her body with large feathered fans, only allowing her long lithe legs to be seen. But it wasn’t the woman’s figure that drew his attention. It was the aura surrounding a stone at the focal point of a fan.

“Enza,” he whispered to himself.



Word Count: 574
Total Word Count: 1,098

Boxcode credit goes to Gossamer!
Last edited by Kynier on April 15th, 2019, 11:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Secrets and Elegance Part 3

Postby Kynier on February 15th, 2019, 10:36 pm

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Kynier hadn’t bothered to sever his focus on the woman next to him and ignored the sweet chill of curiosity that her aura emanated after he had spoken to himself.
With his enhanced Sight, he examined ever little aura that surrounded the burlesque dancer for this item the wizard had wanted him to retreive. There was nothing magical that he could see. No aura shining more prominately compared to those around it. If Doler had suspected Enza of having a magical artifact, then his source of information had been wrong.

Kynier watched as the Inarta performed her burlesque display. As he did, he felt Ashara lean over. “What’s your interest in her?” she whispered. The sound pulled his attention away from the Inarta to the Svefra.

Blue eyes portrayed none of the emotions the mage had sensed in her aura. They were inquisitive and sharp they way they searched his eyes for any tells. After a moment of blankly staring back at her he shrugged. “Nothing more than the usual,” he said with a more light-hearted tone than his usual voice possessed. The Viper reared her head back and scrunched her brow together before looking back at the performance. This time, she was watching more critically than leisurely. After a moment, she scoffed loudly and shook her head.

“Typical male. Always showing more interest in an Inarta woman.” A smile pulled at his lips, but he suppressed it. Enza was twirling her feathered fans to partially reveal more of the bare skin she hid behind them. When she tossed a fan into the air, so that it spun theatrically before she caught it, Kynier had an idea. He sat up straight in his chair and rested his left arm on his leg. Delving into his Djed, he brought forth his power and began to push on the astral limb for desynchronization. After a chime, he had unleashed his left astral arm from the elbow down.

Reaching out, the invisible limb stretched over the heads of those in front of them and up to the stage. Suspended not far from the burlesque dancer, he waited for another instance of her tossing the fan into the air. When it came, he sent his hand forth to place his finger into the gap resting near the fan’s base. Making his arms stretch higher into the air, he twirled his fingers to extend the spin of the fan as it rose higher. To the audience and the performer, it simply looked as though she had tossed it too high. Kynier took the fan up until it hit the rafters. There was a collective gasp from most of the audience, and the dancer stopped to stare with a hand over her mouth.

Kynier guided the fan down, making it appear to tumble by shifting it around the grip of his fingers. While those that sat in front of them tried to catch it, the feathered prop “fell” into Ashara’s lap. Kynier released it and brought his astral hand back to its physical counterpart for resynchronization. The Viper gripped the fan a bit surprised, and he could see a hint of surprise in her eyes when she gripped it. “Madam,” the Inarta called, having stepped to the edge of the stage. “Madam, if you would please?” she asked with an arm stretched out. Ashara broke herself out from something that was going on in her mind to look at the performer. It was then that Kynier was able to get a better look at the sapphire embedded in the base of the fan. It was large and beautiful, and obviously valuable.

“Oh,” Ashara uttered before standing up from her seat. She tossed the fan back to the stage with a flick of her wrist. It spun back to the performer as though it were a throwing disc. The Inarta caught it with a single hand and the audience clapped and cheered. Kynier was looking at the Svefra with a bit of a smirk as she sat back down. It took her a few ticks to notice his look, but she was breathing a little heavier than before and biting the lower corner of her lip. She leaned in closer to him to whisper. “The Sanctum allows the performers to be ‘examined’ for up to five bells.” Her gaze went to the Inarta and back to him very quickly. “Would you be interested in a ‘viewing’ of the Inarta? When she is done?”

Kynier raised his eyebrows at the notion before looking back at the dancer. Such an activity would allow him the opportunity to lift the item from her possession. “Yes, I would be.”



Word Count: 828
Total Word Count: 1,926

Boxcode credit goes to Gossamer!
Last edited by Kynier on April 16th, 2019, 12:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Secrets and Elegance Part 3

Postby Kynier on February 15th, 2019, 10:37 pm

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Immediately after the feather dancer left the stage, Kynier and Ashara stood from their seats. How to arrange an “examination” of the performer was something he wasn’t familiar with. Since she knew about such arrangements, he assumed that she also knew how to make one. When they were both out of the seating area, Kynier stood back to allow the Viper to lead them where they needed to go. She made a path to the back of the theater towards the parlor. There was a table on a raised dais with several people sitting comfortably at it.

One was a Benshiran woman that appeared to be around his age. It was her that Ashara approached. When the Benshiran saw the Viper, she stood from her seat and set down the opulent pipe that she had been smoking. “Ashara,” she said with a pleasant tone and outstretched arms. The Svefra widened her arms and entered the woman’s embrace.

“Ruby,” she said before the two of them exchanged kisses on the cheeks. “The Sanctum is as lovely as ever.” Ruby scoffed and gave a half-hearted dismissive wave of her hand. “And the performers are exquisite too.” A giggle of flattery passed between them before the Hostess cast her eye to Kynier, who had been standing a few paces back patiently.

“And who is the tall, dark stranger?” The Benshiran asked while walking past Ashara and towards him. Ruby, was more lean elegance as opposed to the Vipers voluptuous body structure, by the grace with which she moved made her appear… more. The Benshiran smirked at Ashara with a scrunched nose, “Ah, is this your newest?” Ashara laughed and nodded. Ruby turned her attention back to Kynier and examined him from head to toe. “Personally, I like knowing their names.” She stepped closer and held out a hand. “Ruby Demoya.”

Kynier gently cupped the fingers of Ruby’s extended hand with his own, bowing down to kiss her knuckles. “Kynier Halatara,” he whispered so low that Ruby had to strain to hear. “And it is quite a pleasure, to finally be able to visit your establishment.” He released her hand and she brought hers together at her navel.

“This is your first time, sir?” she said a bit surprised. “Please forgive the state of this place. There was a bit of a scramble to find people to perform for tonight. I’m afraid its not the best selection that we’d normally provide.” Kynier set his hands behind his back and smiled politely.

“If this is an unfortunate display, then I am excited to see what entertainment you’d have on a good night.” Ruby giggled at the dry humor. After an instant of silence that settled, Kynier took the conversation straight to the point. “Ashara tells me that it is possible to arrange for a more private… appearance… with any of the servers or the performers.” Ruby widened the smile of her painted lips, narrowed her eyes, and twisted her head a little to the side while looked at Kynier.

“Mmmm,” she hummed playfully, “Who in particular has managed to draw your attention?”

“None other than the feather dancer that was just performing.”

“Ah, yes. Enza,” Ruby said making an unnecessary adjustment to the sleeve of her dresss. “She’s well known for igniting a fire in a man’s blood.” Ashara stepped closer.

“And… a woman’s,” she said pointedly when looking Ruby in the eye. Ruby’s smile waned but didn’t disappear completely.

“You…” the Benshiran looked from Ashara to him and back again. “You both want to? At the same time?” Ashara’s answer came in the raising of a single eyebrow for an instant. Ruby laughed a little nervously before looking to Kynier. “Might I suggest that you have a private appearance by yourself first? Ashara is at time…” The Viper stepped forward and brushed the back of her hand against the side of Ruby’s neck, cutting off the words.

“Ruby, there’s a strong appeal to both of us seeing her at the same time.” Ruby’s gaze was cast downwards, and her smile was reduced to tight pressed lips that barely curved. Kynier saw how tense the body language of the hostess became. It appears the wealthy or successful were not beyond the Viper’s venom.

“Of course,” Ruby said a bit quietly. “That’ll be ten gold mizas between the two of you.” Ruby stepped out of Ashara’s reach. “I’ll have her come see the two of you in the fourth room. You’ll have five bells of her undivided attention.” Kynier retrieved half of the charge from his pocket and handed them to the hostess. Her eyes did not wander to meet Kynier’s, nor so much as look above the height of his sternum. Ashara paid her half as well and started walking away. “Ashara,” Ruby called with a note of pleading in her voice. The Viper stopped and looked back with a disguised look of inconvenience. “I don’t want a repeat of what happened with Hulond.”

Kynier watched the exchange with some intrigue. After a moment, the Viper bowed her head once in acknowledgement before turning to leave. Kynier turned to Ruby, “If you could please ensure that Enza brings her feathered fans with her, it would be much appreciated.” Ruby gave him a false smile and nod. Then he turned to follow the other woman.



Word Count: 889
Total Word Count: 2,815

Boxcode credit goes to Gossamer!
Kynier
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Secrets and Elegance Part 3

Postby Kynier on February 15th, 2019, 10:39 pm

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“What happened with ‘Hulond’?” he asked when he caught up to the Svefra. They were heading around the back of the stage area where Kynier saw an archway leading to a corridor. The dark-haired woman did not turn her head nor gave any acknowledgement to his question. From the silence, it seemed that something unfavorable had happened with Hulond. Whether he was dead, crippled, or some other fate, Kynier couldn’t discern from the side of her head. It was enough of a message though. Going into this back room with Ashara, he was going to need to be extra careful.

The corridor itself broke off into several other hallways. The doors they passed were marked numerically. Taking a left at one of the corners, the found the door to the fourth room on the right-hand side of the hall. Ashara opened the door to reveal a large room with an extravagant vanity set, extensive wardrobes, and a large four post bed. Kynier slowly stepped in while examining all of it. Ashara moved right in and spun a fine chair around to observe the door and sat in it. He closed the door behind him and wandered to a chair on the other side of the room, speaking as he did.

“My reasons for being in this room are more than obvious,” he said to play into the façade. “But exactly, what is your reason for being in this room?” The Viper draped her legs and pulled on her dress provocatively.

“What is it that makes you think that I only sample one of the options?” Kynier paused as he took off his jacket to stare. The woman parted her lips to playfully flick her tongue up once before recoiling it quickly back inside her mouth. He scoffed and hung his jacket on the back of the chair. Nothing else was said as he unbuttoned the black and gold vest and draped it over his jacket. It was uncomfortable, the way she watched him. As though he were some sort of spectacle, one only committing to half of a performance, while the other half played out in her mind. Kynier tried to ignore the feeling of her eyes upon him as he unfastened his weapons from his belt.

How was he going to get the sapphire with both of them in the room with him? It seemed a bit favorable to have the Viper there. While the two women were engaged with each other, he could slip the jewel into his pocket. But then how was he going to make a smooth exit after that? His thoughts were interrupted by Ashara’s voice. “Do you hate me?” Her voice had a genuine inquisitive nature to it. He stopped to glare at her. From the look of her eyes, she really couldn’t tell.

“You threatened the people who were closest to me just so I would do you bidding,” he half snarled. “And now, you want to use one of my deeper secrets against me.” He took a seat in the chair. “Hate would be an understatement.” She looked at him for a moment longer to process his response. Then, she lowered her gaze and began to fidget with the hem of her dress with one hand.

“I thought you would understand,” she said a bit sadly. When she looked back up at him, she met his questioning glare. “You follow Akajia, don’t you?” Kynier reared back a little in surprise of her knowledge. “You work to collect secrets and use them against people when the time’s right.” He sighed a frustrated sigh at how he had fallen victim to that exact tactic. It seemed to him, that Ashara would have been a formidable Nightstalker. So why was it that the Night Goddess had never marked her? The Viper shook her hair out and ran a hand through it.

“Normally,” she said, “a spy works around the laws to gain information. But in a place where there are no laws, you must establish your own rules, or even a code of conduct.” Kynier silently listened and watched her, wondering why she was telling him all this. “Gods be damned, my pet.” The words weren’t a curse, but a statement. “The only thing a person should serve is their own ambition.” Ashara turned her head to look at him again. “It isn’t personal, you just proved capable that first night I saw you. And there is much you can do to progress my plans.”

They locked eyes for a long moment. Kynier felt his chest stiffen, making breathing more of an effort under her gaze. “I have my own ambitions to serve, Ashara.” His tone was neutral. “And I can’t afford to capitulate to your desires without sacrificing my own.” Ashara’s hand began to fidget with the hem of her V-neck.

“The things that would happen if you don’t do as I ask, are not what I want to happen. I can’t just do nothing with the knowledge of a Mage in Sunberth. So, I make use of it myself.” The warning was clear. Even if she stopped to leave him alone, she’d pass the information along to someone that wouldn’t.

“If nothing else, understand this one thing, Ashara.” He leaned forward to rest his elbows on his knees as he kept his gaze locked with hers. “Anyone that comes after me, knowing what I am, I will destroy.” She scoffed and smiled a little, but the smile faded when she realized his sincerity in his eyes. “You bested me once. But that was because I couldn’t show what I was. Or what I’m capable of.” He added a bit of an edge to his voice. “Now that you do, I won’t hesitate to use it. And I will destroy you with more efficiency that what Narim suffered.”

He noted how her faced blanched at the mention of Narim’s name. And the way she shifted and cleared her throat, looking away from him. Kynier stared at her for a moment. “You weren’t expecting that I could kill him,” he said in realization. The Viper froze for an instant before looking at him. Kynier leaned back in his chair. “You were there.” He looked away as his mind quickly ran through the scenario. “You wanted Narim dead but didn’t expect that I could kill him.” He brought his gaze back to her, “So, what? Did you anticipate that I would wound him enough for you to end him yourself?”

A strange smile grew on her face. One that appeared to be a mixture of being impressed and embarrassed. “You’re better at this work than I originally gave you credit for.” Her gaze veered to stare at something unseen as she rubbed her thumbnail against the tips of her other fingers in thought. Kynier wondered what exactly she was considering. More than likely, it was what to do with him.


Word Count: 1,154
Total Word Count: 3,969

Boxcode credit goes to Gossamer!
Last edited by Kynier on April 15th, 2019, 11:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Kynier
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Secrets and Elegance Part 3

Postby Orakan on April 11th, 2019, 11:18 pm

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ImageKynier
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Skills
● Socialisation - 2XP
● Rhetoric - 1XP
● Auristics - 2XP
● Projection - 1XP
● Seduction - 1XP
● Deduction - 1XP
● Subterfuge - 1XP
● Planning - 1XP
● Intimidation - 1XP
● Investigation - 1XP

Lores
● Ashara: Has her own plans that go against Daggerhand leadership
● Kynier: Wants to make Ashara his tool rather than vice versa
● Kynier: Dresses for the occasion
● Location: Scarlet Sanctum
● Lore of taking in a predictable and disappointing play
● Scarlet Sanctum: Fire dancers are truly entertaining
● Auristics: Ashara's complicated aura
● Auristics: Sensing mirrored feelings of longing
● Auristics: Can be used to detect magic in other people and objects
● Auristics: Keeping track of two auras at once
● Projection: Detaching the astral arm from the elbow down
● Projection: Using the astral hand to manoeuvre an item in the air
● Scarlet Sanctum: Allows visitors to 'examine' performers for up to five bells
● Seduction: Introducing yourself with a kiss on the hand rather than a shake
● Ruby Demoya: Owns and runs the Scarlet Sanctum
● Ashara: Knows Ruby and how the Scarlet Sanctum operates
● Ashara: Has caused trouble at the Scarlet Sanctum in the past with an 'entertainer' name Hulond
● Ashara: Makes Ruby nervous
● Deduction: Coming to a conclusion based on what evidence you have found
● Intimidation: Threatening to destroy Ashara or anyone who uses his secret against him


Misc/Penalities/Loot
Mild overgiving due to extending the reach of the astral arm beyond the level of competent: Tingling and numbness down the arm. Enough time has passed for this not to be an issue at the current time.

ImageComments
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Hey there, I understand this grade may be disappointing but I don't want to detract from the fact that it was a nice bit of story. That lovely 'show, don't tell' rule is a major factor here; I can tell you were going for certain skills but you told me rather than really showing me (in regards to higher level skills) so I wasn't able to award them :( Also, as a marked of Akajia, you should know she does not approve of the act of selling information/secrets or using them for personal gain so please refrain from this misinformation in the future.

Thank you for the read and I do apologise for the fact that the queue had been sitting untouched for so long. Do let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding your grade and don't forget to delete/edit your request in the grading queue.
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“The means to every crime is ours,
and we employ them all,
we multiply the horror a hundredfold.”

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☉ absence ☉I'll be away in NZ from 28/5 - 9/6. Apologies for any inconvenience
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