PM to join [Gilthas' Workshop] Circles Widen (Kelski)

A lost Dragoon stumbles into Sunberth's underground mages.

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

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[Gilthas' Workshop] Circles Widen (Kelski)

Postby Tarn Alrenson on February 22nd, 2019, 4:26 am

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Timestamp: 80th of Winter, 518 AV
Tarn strained his eyes trying to pierce the thick darkness, but to no avail. His path was lit a little way in front of him by the torch he held, but the feeble flame couldn’t do much more than illuminate just enough ground for him to take his next step with some measure of surety. Above his head, many feet of stone lay between him and Sunberth’s busy streets. Down here, Tarn was insulated from the clamor of the city, surrounded by a suffocating silence broken only by his own footsteps, the rhythmic dripping of water from the cave ceiling, and the occasional pattering feet from one of the city’s monstrous rats.

Tarn hadn’t meant to go this deep underground. He’d first entered the maze of Sunberth’s mining tunnels through the entrance the Sun’s Birth maintained. In the beginning, he’d planned on only going slightly farther than the gang’s regular sphere of control. All he’d wanted was a secluded spot, an abandoned room maybe that he could use for his own purposes, but instead he’d gotten lost. Quite hopelessly lost, in fact.

At first, he’d tried to make a map so he could retrace his steps and maybe make some sense of this place. That venture had failed, and the resulting “map” resembled a child’s drawing more than anything else. If anything, Tarn had a worse sense of his direction afterwards than if he hadn’t tried at all. He was beginning to grow very worried. He’d lost his sense of time, but it had to have been at least a full bell since he had descended into the tunnels, maybe two, or even three. It was hard to keep his mind straight down here. All he could do was keep walking, hoping to find some sign of a route back to the surface. Preferably one that wouldn’t bring him back up into the basement of some bloodthirsty Daggerhand, or somebody else who wanted to kill him, as Tarn was regrettably unarmed.

As Tarn walked, the cave he had been following intersected another tunnel. This one was slightly larger, with smoother walls. Tarn stopped and cocked his head. This new tunnel looked far more like a passageway than the one he had been following before, which looked like it hadn’t seen consistent human feet in a few centuries. The walls of this one were smoother, as was the floor. The ceiling was tall as well, with more than a foot of clear space above Tarn’s head.

Tarn decided to follow this new path. He didn’t know where it led, but at least it looked like it went somewhere. He picked a direction and followed it, resuming his march through the darkness. Tarn’s legs were beginning to tire. He had been walking for some time now, and didn’t want to stop and rest for fear his torch would burn out and he would be stuck down here in the stygian blackness forever.

Almost like an answer to his ensuing fear, Tarn’s eyes caught a distant speck of light. Growing excited, Tarn started to walk faster, nearly breaking into a run before his caution overtook him. People in Sunberth didn’t like others interfering with their business, and people whose business necessitated the use of the tunnels were more than likely the type that liked to “silence” loose ends that got involved where they didn’t belong. He had to be careful.

Tarn slowly approached the light, doing his best to step quietly. Unfortunately, any subtlety he gained was outweighed by his loud, heavy breathing. Being in darkness for so long was starting to do a number on his nerves. As he broke out into the illuminated area, Tarn’s eyebrow raised with curiosity. It seemed to be a workshop of sorts. Not like any he’d seen before though. There was a sheaf of papers on a workbench, and Tarn leaned over to inspect them. They were filled with figures that he recognized as letters and numbers, but he couldn’t quite make out what they said. He’d never been able to read more than a word here and there. His pa had always wanted to teach him more thoroughly, but they’d never found the time, and eventually his pa’s time had run out.

Tarn picked through a few of the other items on the bench, including some glass tubes and bottles, examining them.

“What the…” Tarn mumbled.

“Hey!” a voice called out to Tarn. His eyes shot up and he spun around on his heel to meet the gaze of a keen-eyed man. “Please, do not touch those, they are quite delicate.” Tarn backed away from the workbench, raising his hands to show he was unarmed and hadn’t swiped anything.

“I’m sorry,” Tarn said, “I was just lost, and I saw your lights, and then…” Tarn gestured vaguely around him.

“You must have been quite lost to make your way here on accident. Would you mind disclosing where you descended?” the man asked.

“I came down from the West side of the city,” Tarn replied. The man raised an eyebrow.

“Quite lost indeed.”
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Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. --CS Lewis
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Tarn Alrenson
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[Gilthas' Workshop] Circles Widen (Kelski)

Postby Kelski on February 23rd, 2019, 6:47 pm

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Kelski heard the voices talking as she slipped through the open doors to Gilthas’ Worship home. Why in the world did he keep his doors open anyhow? She knew the Mage was used to being reclusive, alone, and isolated. But recently they’d been making so many trips back and forth between his Workshop and The Gem between the two of them that the Reimancer had improved the path to his home, eliminating the need to repel down a cliff and instead and put in a nice wide staircase she could almost ride Moth down. The tunnels to his home were now cleared of debris, wide open, and looked well… used. That meant people straying into crossing one of the pathways leading to and from his dwelling could easily stumble upon his home.

The Kelvic wasn’t worried about Gilthas’ ability to defend himself. She was certain he could. But Sunberth was still a rough place to live and people had less than stellar personalities who lived here often enough. Some of them made animals with very negative reputations look tame… pit vipers, sharks, rabid dogs. Kelski could only imagine who had stumbled upon Gilthas’ world. Or… worse yet… who else the mage had brought home. The Kelvic had formed strong ties to the mage. She leaned on him, looked to him for guidance, and felt his love which had utterly stabilized her in a confusing and heartbreaking time of her life. She was stronger because of Gilthas and his teachings, because of his calm quiet ways, and because of how much honesty he showed towards himself and coaxed out of her about her own flaws and weaknesses.

Him talking to someone else caused unfamiliar feelings of jealousy to rise in her. So she slunk forward, Nightstalker style, moving from one shadow to another, until she was well into the workshop. Watching them from the darkness, she took one more step forward, intending to hit the shadow behind the stranger and lay a dagger at his throat… just in case he was threatening Gilthas. She stepped into one shadow, out of the one behind Tarn, and misjudged the distance. She banged her hip into a workbench painfully, sent glassware crashing, and then tried to scramble out of the way in her own startlement. She slipped on glass, went down with a graceless crash, and looked around frantically for a rock to crawl under.

There was none. Her cheeks flushed bright red, especially since she recognized the man standing before Gilthas the moment he turned to look at what caused the commotion. She smiled weakly, less worried about Tarn than she should have been, and awkwardly clambered to her feet. She shed broken glass off her leathers as she did so, awkwardly brushing the shards off her ass and backing up.

Gilthas momentarily looked like he was about to laugh before a stern frown settled on his face and he pointed at the mess. “Kelski…. you will clean every last bit of that up and replace all that glassware you just broke. Glass doesn’t grow on trees down here you know.” He said irritably.

Kelski didn’t blame him. He’d been locked underground for so long – hundreds of years – that acquiring things like glassware for his lab took time and more effort than she herself could probably ever imagine or appreciate.

“My apologies. I thought… there might be trouble and I was trying to be… quiet.” Her words were not helping the flame up in her cheeks. Kelski, dressed in black night armor and carrying a backpack of supplies to the mage, looked frustrated. She gave Tarn a look and glanced around for a broom and something to sweep the glass up in.

“Hey Tarn. It’s been a while since I’ve seen you. How have you been? You and Gilthas know each other?” She asked curiously, trying to do anything to get the attention off her clumsiness. It wasn’t the most fun thing ever looking so awkward in front of someone you tried hard to show your best sides too. Gilthas was definitely that person. Kelski wasn’t so sure about Tarn. She respected him, but he was Sun’s Birth and that in and of itself didn’t lend a lot of faith to his character. But the one-time Kelski had met him before, she remembered and had been struck by his idealism. He really wanted to change things in Sunberth for the better… make a difference, and hadn’t been willing to give up on The Sun’s Birth. It was a noble quality… stubborn determination and idealism. She was curious to see if he still had those sorts of feelings or if the gang had worn him down and drove his light darker.
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