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A long day becomes even longer

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

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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Baelin Holt on October 23rd, 2019, 12:43 am

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15, Fall 519 AV

To say that Baelin was exhausted would be an understatement; he was worn so thin that he might as well just throw in the towel and call himself a ghost already. Only a bare two bells into the day, the forge stopped getting air from the bellows. And, without air, the hearth wouldn’t hold any heat. And without heat, you have no forging. And with no forge, you didn’t really have a smithy.

After another half-bell of troubleshooting, they couldn’t find any kind of clinker or other obstruction at the bottom of the fire pot, and the bellows―when disconnected―pumped out air just fine. The problem must have been with the tuyere―the pipe leading from the bellows to the hearth. And so Karos and Lawrence had had a decision to make. They could stop production for the day to fix the problem. Or they could have the bellows pumping overtime to force as much air to the hearth as possible, keeping it lit and hot enough for them to continue their work. Then the problem could be fixed overnight, when the hearth was supposed to be cooled down anyways.

It should go without saying which option was picked.

So, as the lowest in position at the Knight’s Armory, the unenviable task of pumping the bellows fell to Baelin. All. Day. Long. No forging, no grinding, no hammering. Just pumping the bellows. Pull up to fill, push down to blow, pull up to fill, push down to blow, over and over and over again. Baelin could barely even feel his arm anymore, and he could already tell that his shoulders and right side were going to be mightily sore in the morning. Gods he was tired.

Baelin followed his route through the Castle Commons on auto-pilot, movements sluggish and body stiff as he concentrated on the singular goal of getting back to his apartment. He could get home, crash on his bed, and then just…not move. The glorious promise of laying down and doing nothing kept him going, prompting one foot in front of the other despite his depleted reserves.

While he may have typically kept his guard up during his walk home―eyeing any and all would-be thieves with the promise of savage revenge should they mark him―today Baelin moved with rote navigation. Past the bone trinkets stall, around the scarf seller with the lazy eye, skirting clear of the bustle of the Pig’s Foot―Baelin remained largely unaware of the people he passed and the attention he may or may not have received.

He just wanted to go home. Lay down. And be done with the day.

Gold on legs is the saying Baelin had heard. For people like this. Those with mizas in their pockets, and little to no awareness to protect them. In the back of his mind, Baelin was dimly aware that this was exactly what he was doing. But he was tired. And he’d gone a full season without being robbed; maybe people overstated the risk. It’d be fine. If he let his guard down just this one time, it’d be fine.
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Anthoni Cole on October 23rd, 2019, 3:53 am

He leaned up against the corner of the alley way, back pressed hard against the cold stone. A refreshing crunch into the large apple he stole from a merchant stall earlier that day. Taste better when it's free he thought with a sick grin as he wiped his mouth clean of the juices. People walked on by and Anthoni's eyes lingered on them all in turn. None however would eye him for to long, he had that look about him, the look of trouble. Most Sunberthers could see it in others as if it were a natural sixth sense innate in them.

The sun was sinking now and Anthoni's spot tonight was chosen carefully. The honest folk would be headed home after a good, hard days labor. Off to their families, or their beds and some to drink away their days wages. One man in particular had caught Anthoni's eye, a lowly smith at the Knights Armory. He'd been stalking the man for a few days now, learning his route home was easy enough. The smith seemed to always take the same route to and from work. This night happened to be the night Anthoni was ready to make his move.

His apple was nearly gone when the man finally came into view. Anthoni swallowed the entire thing whole, core and all, unwilling to waste a bite for he didn't know when he'd eat next. Pushing himself off the stone wall he followed after his mark. Keeping his distance and maintaining the pace that the smith set for himself, so he didn't gain or lose any distance from the man. This night however the smith was dragging his feet, it didn't take much to observe just how tired the man was. A sigh of relief escaped Anthoni's lips, this might be easier than he expected.

Gold on legs he thought to himself after they passed the Pig's Foot tavern, the smell of alcohol and smoke bleeding off of the people he walked amoungst. He let out a quiet curse under his breath as he momentarily lost sight of his mark. His eyes widened as he scanned the area once again, searching for the stiff man dragging his burdened feet amoung a crowd of people eagerly trying to get home. It didn't take long to find him and this time Anthoni picked up his pace. Slowly but surely closing the distance between himself and the smith.

With each step Anthoni got closer to the mark and the familiar feeling slowly crept in. His heart began to beat loudly against his chest as if creating the same old tragic tune Anthoni had heard time and time again. Against all odds sweat began to pool up over his thick dark eyebrows seemingly ignoring the cool air of the evening. His hand instinctively brushed along the hilt of his dagger and a silent prayer was sent out to any God whom would listen. Asking them for the luxury of not needing a blade this time, just quick feet.

A few paces behind the smith now, Anthoni's eyes scanned for the coin purse he could hear chinking with every step the mark took. The side of a worn belt is where he found it. Instantly Anthoni's hands reached out and like a natural he snatched the coin purse away from it's rightful owner. Without thinking Anthoni gave the worn out man a hard push in the back, an attempt to force the man on his belly. Spinning on his feet Anthoni turned tail and ran down the nearest alleyway, his hands already propping up his hood over his head. That way no one can get a good look at his face.

The sun was now down and Anthoni made his escape through the shadows of an old alley path cut throughout the sleepless city. He didn't even look back towards the smith as the mans coin jingled in Anthoni's hands as he ran.
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Baelin Holt on October 24th, 2019, 2:48 am

Baelin had only the barest of warnings―a tug at his waist―before someone shoved hard at his back. He stumbled, lurching forward with too-long steps. If there wasn’t someone in front of him, he might have managed to stay on his feet. But as soon as his momentum carried him into the woman in front of him, they were both screwed.

A good foot shorter than Baelin and not at all braced for the jolt, the woman buckled and went down in a flurry of limbs. In an effort to avoid falling straight on her, Baelin twisted and brought himself down, falling hard on his side. His shoulder took the brunt of his fall, and after all day using it, it felt like someone shoved a knife in the joint. A wheezed hiss felt like it got punched out of him, just as he caught a flash of movement out of the corner of his eye. It was gone as quickly as he saw it: dark clothes sprinting away in the crowd. Spitting out swears, Baelin rolled back to get space from the woman he knocked over and got his feet under him.

He didn’t have to check his waist to know that his coins were gone. He did anyways, just on the off chance that a miracle happened and what had to have been a thief ran away emptyhanded. But no. The whole pouch. Gone.

Shyke. Shyke shyke shyke!

How much did he have on him today? He had to have lost at least ten, twelve―shyke he didn’t know how much gold. The woman he’d knocked over was shouting something at him, but Baelin barely even heard her over the rush of blood in his ears. Shyke! What was he going to do? Baelin pushed through the crowd, trying to catch a glimpse of dark clothes again. Shyke shyke! Why were so many people wearing dark clothes? Baelin spun around, eyes darting as he scanned the Commons faster than he could process.

Desperation clawed at him. He couldn’t see anything. People passed and loitered, goods swayed in and out of view; everything just a normal evening in the Commons. What was he going to do? Was this really it? He takes just one break from glaring bloody murder at everyone and then that’s that? Coins gone and days of work lost in an instant. Baelin zigzagged through the assembled stalls, following no rhyme or reason to his search. Stuck in a desperate rush to find what was taken from him, but with no way to make it happen.

The thief was gone. His mizas were gone. And there wasn’t a petching thing he could do about it.

Baelin snarled and fought back the overwhelming urge to punch something. He settled for clenching and unclenching his fists instead, over and over again as he continued his hopeless search. At this point, he knew he wouldn’t find it. But it was one thing to know that his coins were gone, and an entirely different thing to truly accept that.

Stubborn to a fault, Baelin wasn’t about to just leave. Not until he’d checked every petching spot he could find. Venturing away from the assembled stalls, Baelin started to check around structures. He circled back to the Knight’s Armory, did a loop around the Temple of the Unknown, and then just kept going. Out to the Gallows before he doubled back. Around to the Armory again, just in case. The thief was here somewhere. Nevermind that Baelin had no idea how he’d even be able to spot them. It wasn’t like his coin pouch was particularly distinctive, and if the thief had stopped running, then there’d be no way to distinguish him or her from anyone else.

Petch…this was hopeless. Maybe he should just―

A shout jolted him from his thoughts, and a flare of absurd hope sprung in him. Maybe it’s the same thief, robbing someone else. Logic was able to kick in a moment later, reminding him that the odds of that being the case were so absurdly ridiculous that he should be ashamed of himself for even thinking it. Besides, that shout had pain laced into it. Investigating it would only prove to be trouble. No mizas, just pure, certified trouble.

The first shout was followed by another, and Baelin groaned, already hating himself for what he was about to do. This was so monumentally stupid. There was just no way anything good would come from this.

Nevertheless. Baelin headed towards the noise. He walked slowly, stepping carefully to try and make as little noise as possible. It was at least better than running headfirst into the fray, but probably not by much. The noises got louder, and Baelin steeled himself to peek around the corner.
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Anthoni Cole on October 25th, 2019, 12:48 am

The sound of his footsteps echoed off the stone walls surrounding him, breathing heavily as his heart pounded in his chest. The mizas began to weigh heavy in his hand and with each jingle the coins made Anthoni knew his days work was worth it. Without even opening the bag he could tell there were a good ten coins at least. A whole ten coins! The young man grinned as he thought of Keiyara at home, he might surprise her with a sweet cake.

Finally he stopped running through the alleyways and rested his hand against the cold wall. A quiet, calm breeze blew past him and he lowered his hood to let the cool air dry up his sweat. Waiting as he slowed his breathing back down to normal Anthoni opened the sack of coin and began to count his take. He laughed out loud as the tally raked in more than he'd guessed, twelve mizas, Keiyara would get her sweet cake and maybe a new book after all.

"Thank'ya smith," he said aloud "golden legs you was." With that he put the coin back inside the pouch, tucking it inside his jacket pocket and began to walk back home. Darkness had fallen now and the moonlight paved the way out of the labyrinth of alleys. Anthoni's eyes were opened wide as he walked alone, ears perked up and his hand rested on the pommel of his dagger. He was almost back to the open streets, about to turn one of the last corners when a woman stepped into view.

"Hey handsome," she said as her eyes pierced him "you look lonely tonight." She stepped in closer to him and Anthoni put up his hand, keeping her at bay.

"Scram woman, I ain't got the time." His reply was short and so was his patience as he began to shoulder past her. One large step and he felt her hand curl around his wrist and yank his attention back to her. The two locked eyes just before she spat in his face. Reeling his head back defensively due to a mouthful of saliva blinding him.

"But you've got the coin!" She yelled loudly "Tebo I've found him!"

Instinctively Anthoni jerked his hand free from the woman and shoved her hard against the stone wall behind her. She let out a scream before she went down, tripping over her own feet. He went to wipe the gunk out of his eye when suddenly his feet buckled underneath him. The pain registering as he crumbled to the floor on his hands and knees. He looked up and saw a large man just before a boot stomped violently against his head.

"That's the one we saw in the market!" The womans voice echoed in his ears, Anthoni lying on his stomach before the pair to dazed to think clearly.

"Oh I beat him good didn't I, didn't I?" A mans voice this time, must be Tebo, Tebo, Tebo, Anthoni kept thinking to himself. Trying to remember the name the woman used in case he lived through this. He could feel small hands tugging at his jacket but he was face down, they couldn't get to the sack of coin. His dagger was also attached to his waist in front, if only he could...

Anthoni began to raise to his feet but before he could get all the way up a solid boot slammed into his ribs. A loud scream escaped his lips and echoed throughout the alley. He landed on his back and his head hit the ground with a thud. He felt the coin purse being ripped from his jacket pocket. His hands vainly tried to reach for it but it was to late. He watched as his attackers ran down the alley, helpless to pursue them.

Anthoni crawled to the edge of the wall and pressed his body against it. Blood seeped from his head, he'd bit his tongue and the taste of blood filled his mouth. With every inhale a sharp pain pierced his side.

All he could think about was sweet cake and a little girl waiting at home for him.
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Baelin Holt on October 25th, 2019, 4:22 am

Two people burst past him as soon as he leaned in for a look. Running quick, they were gone just as fast as they had appeared. Baelin watched the direction they’d fled to for a tick longer, a cold feeling settling in the pit of his stomach. People running from the scene of a shout wasn’t exactly encouraging.

Yep. He should just turn around. Right now. He’d already been robbed today; he didn’t need any more trouble.

Really. Walk away. Anytime now.

Baelin swore under his breath. He was going to be a petching idiot about this, he already knew it, and no amount of logic or reasoning was going to fix that. Sucking in a deep breath, Baelin counted to ten, then pressed forward into the alley.

He didn’t have to go far before he saw it. A body was heaped up against the wall, blood still running from its head. When he first saw it, Baelin was certain that the dark, bleeding lump was dead. Yet another person fallen to the lawless turmoil of Sunberth. It wasn’t Baelin’s place to be upset about it, but he couldn’t help but feel that this was just a bit too senseless. Just…too much of a waste of Kihala’s gift.

Whether the death had been senseless or not, there were still things Baelin could do to honor the dead. It would be far too apathetic of him to do anything less. Walking closer, Baelin began to murmur a quick prayer for the deceased and readied himself to attend to the body.

It wasn’t until he was within a few paces that he realized the man before him was still alive.

Baelin blinked in surprise. He spent a tick longer than he probably should have watching the rise and fall of the man’s chest and the way his eyes still seemed to track. Alive. His stolen mizas completely forgotten in the face of the stranger’s plight, Baelin dropped to one knee next to the injured man. “Can you hear me?” he asked, quiet yet urgent. If the man was aware enough to answer him, then that was a good sign. If not… Well, Baelin didn’t actually know what that’d mean, long-term. Whether it would turn out to be a death sentence, or if it just meant that he needed rest, was a bit beyond Baelin’s wheelhouse. He was a blacksmith, not a doctor.

Regardless, there were things he could do here and now to help. Baelin took a tick to scan the alley, looking for any sign that threats still lingered. But beyond an alarmingly large rat scuttling between the two buildings, there was nothing else of note. Baelin could hear the bustle of the Commons not far beyond the alley’s mouth, but down here seemed well secluded. Out of sight and out of mind.

Probably why he was targeted, Baelin thought grimly.

Whether the wounded man responded to him or not, Baelin would still lean in to get a closer look at that head wound. While he wasn’t trained in the art of diagnosing injuries, Baelin could still imagine that this had been a wicked hit. He winced in sympathy; he’d once gotten knocked in the head so bad that he’d had headaches for days afterwards. It’d been one of the nastier injuries he’d had, and he couldn’t imagine that this guy’s experience was faring much better.

“Can you get up?” Baelin held out a hand, just in case. If nothing else, he could at least offer a shoulder to lean on until the stranger got his feet under him.
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Anthoni Cole on October 25th, 2019, 5:14 pm

The cold stone was the only thing supporting him as he breathed trying in vain to seperate his thoughts from the pain in his side. His vision was getting blurry and he found himself continually having to wipe the blood from his eyes. Looking up Anthoni could see the full moon staring back at him. A grim smile formed on his face in an effort to spit back at his circumstances. It was all he could do to not wallow in his own misery.

The sound of footsteps could be heard in the distance. It grew louder and louder and Anthoni's mind went to the worst. He grabbed his dagger but didn't find the willpower to unsheathe the blade. I've nothing now, he thought to himself do your worst. A man revealed himself to Anthoni, but not just any man, no it was the smith. What a small world his minds voice spoke silently. The mans voice jolted Anthoni back into reality, asking him if he could hear him. Anthoni returned the question with a half hearted nod followed by a grunt he didn't summon but seemed to come out on its own accord.

"Come to finish the deed?" He asked pointedly, sharp as the dagger that rested under his palm. "I've no coin if that's what you want." He then spit to his side, a large splash of blood painted to ground next to him. The man hunched down beside Anthoni and the sound of his breath echoed in his ears. "It's nothing," Anthoni said to him as he waived off the mans concern "I've had worse headaches." A lie, of course, but his dignity was all he cared for at the moment.

Anthoni tried to rise to his feet but faltered, neck muscles flexing as his hand went to his side. The mans next question seemed to Anthoni as more of a jab than anything else. It was followed by the offering of a hand, help...help from the man who stole from. It was then Anthoni knew for certain that the smith was unaware that it was Anthoni who stole the coin. A fool, he thought as Anthoni reached out for the helping hand and tossed his arm around his neck. He wondered just how friendly the man would be if he discovered Anthoni was his assailant. He decided to make sure the man wouldn't come to now that truth.

"Now you must've seen where the two went," he asked "tell me and I'll split my coin with you." He knew he was in no condition to fight, but he owed people. He needed that coin. Twelve Mizas was a good amount, sure, but he couldn't get it back alone at least not in his condition. Six was still good enough, Keiyara wouldn't get that sweet cake but she'd get fed. His own belly rumbled at the thought of food, the apple he ate earlier no longer holding him over. He'd just have to make the smith believe it was his coin after all.

Anthoni put forth a step down the alleyway, still having his arm around the smiths neck as a crutch of sorts. "That sound fair to you? Five Mizas if you help me, probably won't take long to find 'em too. I know the mans name and seen the womans face." Bartering to the man he'd just stole from, with the mans own coin. It was low, Anthoni knew that, but what else was he to do? This was Sunberth after all. Good, honest folk were hard to come by in this city.

Anthoni looked to the smith but couldn't meet his eyes.

This is Sunberth, he reassured himself again but even still his head hung low, watching his feet tread over the dirt and filth which littered the alley.
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Baelin Holt on October 26th, 2019, 3:24 pm

Come to finish the deed? Baelin grimaced at the sharp accusation. The wounded man must be so rattled that he’d mistaken Baelin for one of his earlier assailants. That wasn’t a good sign. And when the guy followed it up by claiming that it’d been nothing and he’d had worse, Baelin couldn’t help but make a face. Yeah right. That was a blatant lie if he’d ever seen one.

But, regardless of the man’s bravado, he still accepted the offered hand. Baelin helped him up, grunting when his arm protested. As if he needed the reminder of just how very fatigued it still was. He clenched his teeth and resolved to ignore it. Acknowledging his exhaustion was how he got into this mess in the first place; Baelin didn’t need things to get even worse by babying it.

The man threw his arm around Baelin’s neck, and Baelin spared a moment to readjust to better accommodate the new weight. A tight spasm ran through his waist―his body once again reminding him that he’d already overexerted himself and to please stop―but Baelin ignored that too. While he might be tired, the guy draped over his shoulders was beaten and suffering from a head wound. No contest there on who was having the worse day. Even getting his mizas swiped wasn’t as bad as a nasty head wound. Petch, those two attackers likely nabbed this guy’s mizas while they were at it as well. Definitely having a worse day.

Now you must’ve seen where the two went. Tell me and I’ll split my coin with you.

Baelin frowned. While he did see the direction the pair had run off too, that likely didn’t mean very much in terms of finding them. He had briefly seen the direction his own thief had run in, but that hadn’t meant much. It was unlikely that Baelin would ever find them. Not with just a general, initial direction. All anyone had to do was not run in a straight line and then the trail would be lost.

The guy kept talking, trying to sell Baelin on the idea. Five mizas, perhaps gold (or maybe more realistically copper), for his assistance in finding them. Baelin made more in a day of smithing, with considerably less risk. It wasn’t even close to worth it.

However…he couldn’t just leave him here, could he? If Baelin hadn’t literally just been robbed chimes earlier, he could have just given the guy mizas to convince him to go home and rest instead of this crazy search. But as it stood, Baelin had nothing but his old, stone hammer on him. And the idea that Baelin could convince the guy to go home with words alone was so absurd to him that it was laughable.

Baelin gritted his teeth. The guy needed help, and there was no one else here to take that burden. Baelin couldn’t just leave him. Pulling in a deep breath, Baelin hissed, “Fine.” He started towards the alley’s mouth, careful not to jostle his charge too much on the way. Once there, he jerked his head in the direction the pair ran off too. “They went that way.” Glaring at the empty space they’d run off too, Baelin figured he should at least try to convince the guy to drop it.

It didn’t occur to Baelin that he was being a bit of a hypocrite here. Injured Sunberthian looking for his lost mizas? Send him home and let him rest. Own coins stolen? Hunt the bastard down, and be sure to check every nook and cranny they could have hidden in. Nevermind that this guy actually had a name and a face to help his search along, versus Baelin’s vague notion of “they went thatta way.” There was something about it being someone else’s misfortune that allowed for clearer thought, instead of the furor of wronged self.

Completely unaware of any sort of hypocrisy, Baelin gave it an effort. “You ought to go home. No good will come from looking.”
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Anthoni Cole on November 4th, 2019, 9:22 pm

Anthoni saw his rescuer point in the direction of where his muggers took off to. He forced a smile as he took a hard step forward, his arm still draped around the mans neck. When they exited the alleyway Anthoni and him were met with the sight of an open, nearly empty, market square. The sun was now down, the moon high in the night sky, it was no riddle why most were indoors. Where it was safe.

He looked over to the man when he made the suggestion for Anthoni to go home. Slowly Anthoni reeled his arm off the mans neck, finally supporting his own body weight as he rested his arm over his bruised rib cage. He spit the blood outta his mouth, his tongue still bleeding, then wiped his beard clean.

"You can go home if ya'like," he said calmly "but I ain't. My coin got robbed from me and I don't know about you, but I don't take it kindly when people beat me, rob me, then run away with what's mine." He continued to walk on, his arm still cradled to his side. "Besides, I've got a blade if worse comes to worse." He then pulled up his jacket and revealed his dagger to the man. "You say that went thatta way, well, lets ask around and maybe we'll catch up with 'em."

Anthoni then started to walk further in the direction of the culprits, not looking back for his rescuer. In the back of his mind he knew he needed the man. He wasn't in the best shape, but he'd be better off with a sack full of coin. A sick thought crossed his mind, his coin, but not his, the smiths coin. Still, it was Anthoni's coin.

Up ahead he saw a beggar hunched down on the sidewalk, not saying a thing. The mans eyes however were alert, he was watching. Shyke, in Sunberth it was known that beggars always were watching.

"Hey there friend," Anthoni said aloud to the man "I'm lookin for a pair of dishonest folk." He looked behind him at the smith. "Someone told me they took off in this direction, running fast, a pretty girl and a big guy. You seen 'em?" The man didn't speak at first and Anthoni knew why. Information was never free in Sunberth. A man had to force it out or pry it out smooth. Anthoni thumbed his dagger and the thought crossed his mind, but he pushed it aside, to soon.

"Smith," he said looking back "this 'ole man needs a little somethin to refresh his memory." Anthoni spit once again, blood splashing on the beggars boots unintentionally. "You got anything to toss his way?"

Anthoni looked down the street, it diverged in two main roads and a few alleyways. Multiple options to take and either one of 'em could be the wrong one. He cursed under his breath and looked back at the smith. "Anything smith? Anything at all?"
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Ripe for the Picking (Anthoni)

Postby Baelin Holt on November 6th, 2019, 1:48 am

The guy―Baelin was going to think of him as Scar, for lack of a better name―slowly took his weight off of Baelin. As he pulled back, Baelin caught a defined curve of black in Scar’s palm. Baelin blinked, too surprised to focus on it. It couldn’t be. He tracked Scar’s hand as he let it drop, trying to once again see any telltale trace of the black scythe. He could have sworn he saw it. But Scar’s palm was now facing away from Baelin, and he just couldn’t be sure. Maybe he’d seen it, or maybe he was just imagining it. Baelin had never met another outside of his home town that was devote to Dira, and it wouldn’t be outrageous to think that he was so starved for someone likeminded that he was creating connections where there was truly nothing.

Baelin tried to resolve himself to believe just that. That this was just in his head, and he should let it go. But he still kept glancing down to Scar’s hand, waiting for him to turn it so he could get another look. Scar said something about not going home and people running away with what was his, but Baelin only had half an ear for it. Turn your hand, he wanted to snap, Just turn it over and end the suspense.

And then Scar started to walk, exposing his back to Baelin. And, with hands loose at his side…Baelin stared so hard at the shadowed curve of Scar’s hand that his eyes started to feel dry and scratchy. But there! Right there! He saw it again! The dark curve and slash of Dira’s scythe, defined and pronounced among the crevices of Scar’s palm.

Another Eiyon, Baelin thought, barely believing it. He followed after Scar, staring at the back of the recently victimized man with such intensity that he stopped registering what they were passing. As if staring hard enough would offer up everything about Scar that Baelin wanted to know. Was Scar from Sunberth? When did Dira mark him? Was it as overwhelming for him as it’d been for Baelin? And had he found any good way to deal with nuits and ghosts?

Scar was talking to someone―a beggar, perhaps―and Baelin shook himself. He needed to get it together; he’d already reaped the rewards of letting his guard down once today. He didn’t need another. Scar asked the beggar which direction a pretty girl and a big guy went, and seemed to hesitate for a moment as the beggar remained quiet. His indecision didn’t last long; Scar turned to Baelin relatively quick and said, “Smith, this ‘ole man needs a little somethin to refresh his memory.” He spat, then asked Baelin if he had anything to pay.

Baelin’s first thought was no, he didn’t have anything. Not only had he just been robbed and quite literally had nothing on him, but he also didn’t even know if this beggar actually had information worth buying.

And then he frowned. Rewound the question. And ran through it again.

Smith, Scar had said.

Since when had Baelin told him he was a blacksmith? Did Scar recognize him from the Knight’s Armory? Baelin’s brows knitted and he squinted at Scar as he struggled to remember ever meeting this man before. But try as he might, he couldn’t place him. Couldn’t even pull on a vague memory of him. Surely he would have remembered someone with such a distinctive scar running across their face. Wouldn’t he? Was his memory really this bad?

The beggar choked on a laugh, and Baelin’s attention jerked back to him. “Aye,” he said, eyes dancing between Baelin and Scar with mirth, “I’ve seen some dishonest folk.” The beggar wheezed on a few more laughs, which then devolved into a coughing fit. Baelin frowned, getting the distinct feeling that he was the butt of some joke here. Once the beggar got over his fit, he spat on the ground―awfully close to Scar’s boot―and sneered, “Might be’s you’d want to know what I know, Smith.” The beggar cackled again, and Baelin couldn’t help but glance between the beggar and Scar, completely at a loss for what the petch was so funny.

Maybe the beggar was just crazy? Insanity could ruin a man’s life; that very well might be why the beggar made a living of asking for scraps from the already poor. But Baelin couldn’t help but shake the feeling that something was wrong. It nagged at him. And he glanced up at Scar, hoping he might be able to read anything from him.

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Baelin Holt
Blacksmith
 
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Joined roleplay: July 25th, 2014, 12:36 am
Location: Sunberth
Race: Mixed blood
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