Solo Jessol, Who Art Thou?

(This is a thread from Mizahar's fantasy role play forum. Why don't you register today? This message is not shown when you are logged in. Come roleplay with us, it's fun!)

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

Jessol, Who Art Thou?

Postby Alric Lysane on November 2nd, 2021, 10:22 am



3rd Fall 521 AV - Evening - Pig's Foot Tavern

Deciding to brave the streets, dangerous at any time but particularly as the sky began to be smeared purple and black, Alric had found himself requiring the warmth and companionship of others. Not that he was actually spending any time with someone, he knew so few people on a personal level that even if he had wanted to not even he was sure who he would even invite. No, he liked to be somewhat removed, it made it easier to survive in a world where a friend might be a chained stone around your ankles inside a heartbeat.

Yet humans were humans, they required some social interaction even at a distance and he was fairly sure he was still a human. So he was sat at a table, back to the wall and one boot resting upon the edge of a chair, ready to flee if required but enjoying the evening so far. The Pig’s Foot Tavern, refuge of Sunberth and place of peace so long as you didn’t incur the wrath of Merv by damaging his prized establishment.

The warmth was in itself appealing despite the lack of Morwen’s grasp to worry about over the coming seasons, it was the type that slowly eased it way into your very bones. The hearths were well stocked, the rabble was rowdy and loud and the smoke from Alric’s pipe was a relaxing reprieve from the ragged edge of anarchy that was his life. Despite hie best attempts he had yet to become rich and he was not sure even being rich would make all of his problems go away.

Probably make a few more he mused to himself between puffs as he observed his fellow revellers for the evening.

Most were the regulars, dirty and scruffy workers ground down under the weight of sheer survival. Jovial despite it but weathered and wrinkled faces despite their young ages – no one lived long in Sunberth. A few were more interesting. He noted a handful of mercenaries, mostly in one group toward the opposite side of the tavern. Their weapons seemed dull rather than shiny in the light from what he could see, the armour rusted or dented in places. Hard people for a hard life.

One of the mercenaries was more flamboyant than the rest, taking centre stage and guffawing between downing his cups. He had told some quite sensation stories about chases down alleys and across rooftops. His armour seemed a little too shiny too to Alric’s eyes. Then again he was not an adventurer so it wasn’t enough for him to say the man was full of shyke. He pique his interest though and his mind liked a little puzzle every now and then. He called for a barmaid and watched her pour a drink of watered down ale, or more precisely he watched her. As she was about to leave he put his hand gently upon her forearm.

“Thank you,” he pointed his chin and pipe stem at the vibrant mercenary, “know anything about him?” he asked with a polite tone.

“Can’t say I do, never seen him before. Though one of the other girls thinks he’s familiar. Think I’d remember the armour though. He is quite handsome though” the girl said, eyes shining slightly a she watched the man.

“What’s his name?”

“Jessol the Firm apparently”

“The Firm?” he asked, raining an eyebrow.

“All good mercenaries have names, everyone know that!” she scoffed before leaving Alric alone.

“Well yes but ‘the firm’ seems a bit too…pointed” he muttered to himself as he watched Jessol, smoke curling around his face, sipping every so often as he listened and wondered whether this was interesting enough to waste time with.


Last edited by Alric Lysane on November 3rd, 2021, 8:22 am, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
Alric Lysane
Ragamuffin
 
Posts: 135
Words: 167652
Joined roleplay: October 29th, 2021, 5:41 pm
Race: Human
Character sheet
Journal
Plotnotes

Jessol, Who Art Thou?

Postby Alric Lysane on November 2nd, 2021, 11:29 am

On balance he found the entire thing amusing, he had decided after watching for a while. At least amused enough to acknowledge the mystery that was Jessol the Firm, adventurer and handsome ne’er-do-well. Certainly they were more interesting that the average patron. So Alric had decided to continue his own little investigation. For now it was confined to the Pig’s Foot but perhaps it would extend beyond if it took his fancy.

For the past half-Bell he had simply listened and absorbed the stories, lining them up and against each other and trying to see what consistency – if any – there was within them. So far all he had been able to discern was that whatever the dire situation Jessol found himself in there was some quick witted and creative way of getting out of it. From using a stray power to prod the rears of foes to cause them to fall down stairs to lightning itself striking trees to make bridges.

He was certain that at this point no one believed half of what was being told but nevertheless the stories were entertaining enough that free ale flowed to the teller. Alric wondered if he could learn to be that good to get free drinks but then thought better about it – he preferred not to be the centre of attention for many reasons. Paying for his own ale was a small price to pay to stay largely anonymous.

Jessol took a break and made his way towards the door after declaring a mighty need to unload water and Alric took the opportunity of the lull to find a new seat, next to the ‘true’ mercenaries this time. They did not seem pleased that their drinks were not free he thought from the glares and so he hoped to see if their lips would loosen for this new ‘enemy’ amongst them.

“Pretty good eh?” he stated, point at Jessol’s back as he sat down and took a puff of his pipe.

“Loada shyke is what it is” a stern lass amongst the group said, spitting on the floor afterwards.

“I don’t know, seemed quite fun to me, all that running and jumping. Might be worth trying my own hand at joining your ranks” he prodded gently.

“Pfft might as well take a dagger to your own neck lad, life’s nothing like that nugget is spewing. It’s hard, dirty and damned difficult. Scars and dented armour are all you get by the end of it”

“Why do it then?”

“Pay is good and get to test yourself. Sometimes you gets a good haul and a bit of flesh to add on top”

“Hmm,” he mused aloud around his pipe stem, “well his armour seems neat enough”

“That’s how you know it’s a load of rubbish, thought a Berther’d know that by your age”

“Well we live in hope of better lives eh? So you don’t know him then?”

“Who..Jessol? Never ‘eard of ‘em before today” another chipped in between belches.

“I wonder where he came from then?”

“Damned by Dira if I know but I wouldn’t mind knowing, go an put ‘em to the test” and there was chuckling at that and then a sullen silence at Jessol’s return.

Alric returned to his original seat and ordered another ale. Jessol had just become slightly more interesting and less ridiculous. To be true it had been established the man was full of shyke but a shyke artist good enough to entertain as well as he had…well that was something worth taking a closer look at.
User avatar
Alric Lysane
Ragamuffin
 
Posts: 135
Words: 167652
Joined roleplay: October 29th, 2021, 5:41 pm
Race: Human
Character sheet
Journal
Plotnotes

Jessol, Who Art Thou?

Postby Alric Lysane on November 2nd, 2021, 6:28 pm

It was perhaps another half-Bell or so before the dashing rogue made his exit with bids of needing sleep for a long hard task tomorrow and other excuses. Alric figured that it was a smart tactic, to only stay long enough that you don’t annoy the actual mercenaries enough that they decide it would be worth testing your blade as much as you tested their patience. Though he had no proof he was fairly certain that Jessol was a con-artist of sorts. Not the traditional one that everyone thought of, the one that goes for your miza directly. No this was a confidence racket – a way of getting goods like food and making it seem like it was you being nice and charitable.

It was clever and Alric respected it even as he wanted to find out who they really were. He was not sure why or what, if anything, he would do once he found out. He just knew that it was interesting, passed the time better than smelling broken wind in a tavern and might provide something useful for the future. Even if it was to watch and learn from someone who he might need to emulate should circumstances become truly dire. And so he gave a five count before stepping out into the night, pipe in his pocket now and gloves on.

Pulling his hood up and his cloak closer he glanced around and saw Jessol walking, slightly unsteadily, towards the outskirts of the Commons and he started a slow following pace. There was no need for haste, the man was hardly trying to dust his tracks and run. Or even try to be discreet. Alric stayed about ten paces or so back behind the man and followed slowly. At each corner he approached warily, he didn’t like corners at the best of times let alone as evening closed in. Besides, just because Jessol wasn’t expecting him didn’t mean he should be careless about his shadowing.

Survival was more important than curiosity after all.

After a while of rounding corners carefully and keeping a good distance in the gather shadows to let him be cloaked somewhat more naturally it became apparent that Jessol was leading Alric towards the Tent City. That was a surprise indeed because shiny armour didn’t immediately suggest humble abode to him. Still he followed dutifully and tried to puzzle this out as they went, ever closer to their inevitable destination.

Perhaps he was a wandering warrior, just in town and so without proper lodgings just for a few days? It seemed possible but it still smelled funny to him. If It was the case then why go to the trouble of pitching a tent if you had enough coin to buy out a room at Ruby’s for a week and get flesh fun on top of it? Besides, there was no mud on the man’s cloak he had noticed, nothing to suggest a long or arduous journey. His clothing was, if anything, too smart and, in all honesty, he was genuinely surprised no on had tried to jump them man for all he was worth yet.

Blessed by Yshul indeed he told himself as the tents came into view and Jessol vanished into the multitude.

It was harder to follow the man here, with so many tent ropes, pegs to trip over and just the sheer volume of tents that the man wove his way through. Alric managed to almost dive past the last tent rope and into a fire he had not seen until the last second just as Jessol ducked into what looked like a tent meant for more than one person.

“You alright down there lad?” came the question with a mixture of annoyance and amusement.

“Oh, you know, just about sums up my life these days” he said with as much mirth as he could scratch together as he pushed his face off of the ground and spent a few seconds batting at the edge of his cloak that had actually managed to get its edge into the fire.

This, of course, cause more laughter at his expense. Thankfully he managed to stop the flames before they caused any damage beyond a singed patch he could repair. Once finished he slumped down into a sitting position and took a deep sigh of a breath.

“So….mind if I join your fire seeing as I almost stole some of it by accident?” he asked the few people sat around the glowing warmth.

“Lad, for that display you can even have a little tea” the oldest woman said to more laughter.

Alric cleared his throat with red cheeks as he accepted graciously. It was about all he could do that would salvage some dignity that was left.
User avatar
Alric Lysane
Ragamuffin
 
Posts: 135
Words: 167652
Joined roleplay: October 29th, 2021, 5:41 pm
Race: Human
Character sheet
Journal
Plotnotes

Jessol, Who Art Thou?

Postby Alric Lysane on November 2nd, 2021, 7:42 pm

“So what brings you to our fire stranger? Not meaning to do ill are ye? If so we don’t own much but the tent” the older woman asked him as she set about grabbing a clay cup for his tea.

“Oh, no nothing like that. I was just out for a stroll, found my way here. Wasn’t execting to but…well head’s full of thoughts”

“Have a mind to get rid of some of them then,” she responded, not fully believing him of course but relaxing a little bit, “get you killed this time of night” she passed him the cup as she said that with a smile.

He took it, the rough clay brushing against the leather showing it’s roughness, and eyed them all. Licking hi lips he took a long time to breathe upon the warm tea within, at least long enough until he saw another poured and sipped. Only then did he sip and they all chuckled. Clearly he was set up to be their entertainment this evening. He enjoyed the taste though, not too bitter and soothing to his throat. Something to brace him against the cold that was rapidly closing in.

“This is nice, what is it?” he asked.

“Rugberry Tea, a good thing to have and lasts well enough if you water it down some. But you come to our fire and don’t tell the full truth so why should be let you stay much longer than a cup?” a younger woman with curly red hair asked.

He looked at her for a few moments and wondered if he should bother to answer. He could pay them off a few silver and not really notice it too much but then they’d know he had coin to rob. He could answer directly but then prove himself even more a liar regarding ill intent. Tilting his head he bought himself some time by taking out his pipe and thumbing a tiny pinch of Blue Vision into it, lighting it with a stick from the fire. Once he ahd taken a full puff he gestured to Jessol’s tent.

“Bit of a big one isn’t it?”

“More than one person in it” said the young man, eyeing him carefully and wondering where Alric was going with his response.

“Any strange characters coming and going?”

“Could say that,” said the old woman with a snort, “damned performers, keep us up they do. I’ve a mind to burn their tent down if they carry on, they’ll make us all ill if they keep at it”

“You don’t say?”

“But you still didn’t answer the question”

“True enough, true enough. But you answered the one I came here to answer”
“Not fair then is it? Leaving us without an answer”

“I suppose so. Very well, I am not used to giving words but I do know miza,” he said, taking care not to show the fulness of his pouch and picking out a few silver by feel and passing it to the old woman, “for the tea and the other answers I’d like to know”

There was a small lull in the conversation as they all eyed each other, backs straightening for a bit before relaxing once more as Alric continued to sip the tea and puff away without any hint of him being about to jump up and strike them down. He simply waited for the inevitable question, not that it really mattered as he would ask them eventually anyway.

“What questions?”

“I’d like to know everything about that tent over there and it’s people. Well, everything you know. But especially the one with the fancy armour”

“You going to kill them?”

“No, no that’s not my style. They just seem interesting to me”

“Could call them something different”

“Tell me then…please”

From there he spent a Bell in conversation, not truly asking many questions and their distaste for the performers seemed to trump any form of caution shown to an outsider. Perhaps they thought he had lied and was going to rob or murder them and so sought to help to end the suffering they continued to complain about. Alric didn’t know and, truthfully, he didn’t care. He was getting the answers he wanted and is curiosity was being sated – as well as being renewed. Mostly, however, he was getting more amusement.
User avatar
Alric Lysane
Ragamuffin
 
Posts: 135
Words: 167652
Joined roleplay: October 29th, 2021, 5:41 pm
Race: Human
Character sheet
Journal
Plotnotes

Jessol, Who Art Thou?

Postby Alric Lysane on November 2nd, 2021, 8:09 pm

A short time after thanking the trio of informants Alric was home, cloak draped over the table for the minor repairs needed. He had run out of the tools needed for that and so a trip to the market was now on the cards. No matter, a small amount of miza was worth the price of knowledge and amusement. Not that he would be able to use anything he had learned for much. He set about stacking the small pieces of kindle from the side of the hearth into an interlocked square pattern before grabbing a few of the smaller sticks and sitting down, pulling out his knife. He began to shave back from the tips to create many little feathered portions and repeated this for four sticks.

“Why” he muttered to himself as he set the sticks into the square of kindling and striking flint and tinder until sparks took and he gently put some shavings on top of the smoulders and a medium sized log atop the structure and blew gently again and again until the flames sprang up and he sat back to await the warmth.

It was a question he couldn’t really answer. He had had no goal and no survival mechanism beyond learning who might con him out of his well earned miza. He had told himself on the stalk to the tent city that he might seek tuition for disguise or conning – and that was still technically true. Yet it wasn’t really why he had followed ‘Jessol’. No, he had just found it to be intriguing and amusing. Nothing more, nothing less. All excuses aside he had been bored, perhaps, and latched on to whichever mystery came first.

Still, he pondered as the warmth started to brush his cheeks and he grabbed his blankets from the bed and set them near the fire to heat up for the night, he had learned quite a bit. Useless information perhaps but learned nonetheless. Jessol was actually called Baker as far at the trio had been concerned and he was with three others, two women who were pretty but shrill beasts and a man who was ugly but large and muscled. Baker was an actor, if he could be called that. Perhaps a travelling minstrel was a better description – with dreams, or delusions, of grandeur who wanted to get to Zeltiva and make good on his acting claims.

Hence why he dressed up – in cheap and not ‘real’ armour apparently – and conned people. He saw it as just fee for good acting. Alric supposed that that was fair enough, he had fooled many at the Pig’s Foot after all. The others were either writers or musicians. He hadn’t managed to get the names of their instruments and being fair he probably wouldn’t have recognised them anyway. About the only really useful piece of knowledge he had gleaned was that some sort of argument had broken out some time ago about lost money and betting. So now they were stuck in Sunberth – against most of their wishes – until they could scrape the coin for passage to nice places like Zeltiva.

“Nothing much but it was fun” Alric sighed as he waited for the room to warm enough to go to sleep.

[i]Much like my life, I suppose[i] he mused to himself with a small smile as he watched the flames dance and flicker.
User avatar
Alric Lysane
Ragamuffin
 
Posts: 135
Words: 167652
Joined roleplay: October 29th, 2021, 5:41 pm
Race: Human
Character sheet
Journal
Plotnotes


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests