Solo Speckled Sorrows

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Speckled Sorrows

Postby Cleon on May 14th, 2022, 2:17 am

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59th of Spring, 522 A.V.

They decided to host everything by the Tidepool Bar because it made it signficiantly easier to feed everyone and there were quite a few of them aside from the horde of children Randal had invited to the gathering. An looking at all of them assembled it was hard to believe that this wasn’t even all of them. Lexi, Julian, Kelton, Brea, and Luke were at a similar gathering near the Protea Inn just so they didn’t think anything was amiss. Cleon didn’t much like it at first, but it was better than risking their lives here if he did indeed stumble on something sinister tonight.

Speaking of lives, there were quite a few of them in his hands tonight. Of course there was also Randal, Stu, and Buraga there who would be far more help in a fight if it came to that, which Cleon certainly hoped it did not. He hoped that these children just knew of an item that caused this curse and that one of them was not behind it. An if one of them was, he hoped that they would not sense his attempts to read their minds. He was hoping a lot of things he realized just then, with not much skill to back it up. Its not like he hadn’t been learning, but it seemed so petching slow when there were lives being currently ruined by these curses. Syka was practically coming apart although everyone was putting on a brave face about it.

Cleon decided it was time to stop brooding and walked over to the fire where a few logs had been laid on their sides to give plenty of sitting room. On one log Kyle, Tori, Darcy, and Senora were sitting together, and on another Dalton, Dahlia, and Axim were sitting with Stu who was regaling all of the gathering by playing his drum while humming a deep, happy melody from his core. He smiled, listening to it for a while before he crossed behind the gathering to where Randal and Buraga were standing together. On the outside it looked like they were stirring a pot of stew that had been cooking for the occasion, but when he crossed over he picked up where their conversation left off.

“-elives that it is really one of these children?” Buraga was asking as Cleon walked up, and Randal turned towards him, snorting a greeting.

“Yep.” Randal said, keeping his words simple. His curse must be particularly foul tonight if he was less talkative than usual.

Buraga’s too for that matter as Cleon couldn’t help but notice how the man stopped stirring occasionally to rub the muscles around his joints.

“Well have you decided how you are going to break the subject of curses to get them thinking about it without making them suspicious?” Buraga asked.

Cleon nodded. “I’ve got an idea.” He said, a little more sure than he felt at that moment. Even so, he did his best to put on a brave face as he smiled at them both before turning towards the gathering. Then he almost faltered when he realized he had forgotten to bring a weapon, but then he recalled the snake charm on his wrist. With a silent prayer to whatever god or goddess had left him this gift, he rejoined the gathering.

First he headed to the only empty log that was being used to hold the silverware. There he found amongst the bowls plenty of other implements and after fussing through the pile he found an eating knife which would do the trick as good as anything else. He didn’t stand up right away though. Instead he stayed hunched over, pretending to be clumsily sorting through the stack while as discreetly as he could manage he sneaked the knife up near his wrist. Close enough that he could touch it to the snake fang charm and whisper under his breath “Envenom.”

With that done, he straightened up with a bowl and the knife still tucked against his forearm as he walked to stand near the rest of them. When Stu eventually slowed down with his drumming, Cleon took the moment to clear his throat, smiling widely at the gathering.

“I’m glad we all got to get together today is spite of all that has been happening with these curses. It has certainly made it harder to be festive, but the fact that we can I think shows just how strong we all are together. I would like if none of you mind to say a small prayer to Laviku and Sivah for this gathering by the beach.” Cleon said, and when no one objected he bowed his head slightly, and closed his eyes.

Laviku. Thank you for saving me when you didn’t have to. I am forever in your debt and deeply pleased to have met your son Luke if that is his given name. I would ask that you please bless this gathering as well as what I am about to attempt. Sivah. I do not know you exactly, but I know of you. I thank you for letting gatherings such as this be possible, and I ask that you bless today’s gathering as well. If it be in both of your will, guide my mind and the magical power in this bracelet so that I might learn what I need to in order to help Syka.

Once he was through with his prayer, he reached out mentally to the bracelet on his wrist and activated it.

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Speckled Sorrows

Postby Cleon on May 29th, 2022, 7:44 pm

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As the power in his charm hummed to life, buzzing on the edge of his thoughts, he focused his attention on Kyle. The boy was an enigma, and a bit of a sore spot for him. It had been during his first conversation with the boy that he learned about the power of the charm on his wrist, but unfortunately that day he didn’t end up learning anything significant. Questioning the boy only got him dirt on the other kids, dirt he had more or less followed to dead ends. Lexi’s big secret was that she was actually eighteen and masquerading as an orphan. Kelton seemed harmless, he was just a scared boy. Brea adored Randal and considered him like a father. Luke was Laviku’s son, here to watch the proceedings and Julian. Well Julian seemed fairly normal, as scared as anyone else was in this strange new place. The people he had gathered here today were the ones he had yet to follow up on, and he couldn’t help but recall bits about what Kyle had said about all of them. The boy really was a toxic little shite so Cleon had no qualms about reading his mind first.

While he was reaching out with his charm, he walked over to stand by the boy and knelt by him in the sand. “Hey Kyle. Remember our conversation by the swing?” Cleon asked, lowering his voice so hopefully the sound was absorbed by the Stu’s beating on the drum. “I was wondering if you had seen anything else suspicious lately? I think I could work out a deal to get you whatever you wanted if you have something good for me.” The words left a bad taste in his mouth. He didn’t like humoring the little brat like this, but he didn’t see much choice in that matter to get his thoughts going while his charm was activated.



“No, not really. I’ve told you who you should be looking at” Kyle said, pouting slightly.


Kyle’s thoughts hit him like a cold slap of water.

‘You’re such a stupid mother fucker, if you knew anything you’d realize I’ve got everything I want you already. You suffering horribly is exactly what I want. What even makes you think you could give me anything? Do you even know all there is in the world? Have you been outside your little bubble? You petching slob, I can smell the alcohol on your breath and you think I need your help?’

Without even noticing he was doing it, Cleon’s face went white as he started grinding his teeth. Kyle’s expression subtly changed, and Cleon abruptly stood up.

“Sorry. My curse.. Is giving me a massive headache right now.” Cleon said through gritted teeth. His wrist itched where he had the poisoned eating knife tucked into his sleeve but he remained self aware enough to keep his arm straight at his side. It seemed that there were still a few things useful that carried over from his old life. He took a step backwards now, his mind whirring with those dark, twisted thoughts still echoing in his head. There was a taste like bile at the back of his throat. Cleon had a thought, a suspicion, but he had to make sure. He reached out to Dalton as he stumbled away from Kyle, still feigning a headache by rubbing his temple excessively.

“Dalton, can you help me hold this empty bottle really quick. I need a drink.” Cleon asked, having walked over to his backpack now and the empty bottle of Bluevein gold that he kept around after discovering the nifty little winebottle charm on his wrist. As he asked the question, he reached out to touch Dalton’s thoughts almost hesitantly, afraid to discover if his suspicion was right. That Kyle was the biggest liar of them all. He tried to remember everything he could about what they thought they knew about who might be behind this.

As he thought about that, Dalton’s thoughts streamed in.

‘What the petch is it now? First I get dragged to this little gathering out in the middle of the open so we can all get our selves snatched aboard some ship that’s going to sail into the harbor any minute now. I bet Cleon is working for them too. He’s just trying to get us away one by one. He tried to get Kyle but Kyle didn’t come so now he’s trying to get me to come over, maybe if I just ignore him like Kyle did he’ll leave me alone.’

It was striking the contrast between their thoughts. Between Kyles and every other mind he had been in aside from Luke’s, who was different because he was the son of a god. Even then, Luke’s had been more similar to the others minds than Kyle’s was. There was something different about the way Kyle thought, but he just couldn’t pin it down. He remembered back to what he’d read about Rhysol, the god of chaos, betrayal and lies. All of these children lied, but why then did Kyle tell him all of those secrets. This went beyond normal animosity or spite, most of the children had at least one person they got along with and didn’t out right dislike. According to Kyle’s own mother Dalton and Axim were on good terms, and he knew that Brea and Kelton got along fairly well. Why did Kyle’s thoughts feel different from the rest. He needed a larger sample size.

He decided to shift his attention to Axim who was sitting beside Dalton on the log. Tuning his charm towards the boy as he asked, “Hey Axim, what about you? Do you think you could help me hold this wine bottle steady?” Cleon asked, wishing not for the first time that he had taken the time to get to know these children more than just the trash Kyle spewed about them.

‘Oh Dalton, don’t you see that it gets you more attention ignoring such a request then going over and helping it out. Its over a lot more quickly that way. I know its been a hard journey. Its been hard on all of us, but.. Eh I don’t mind helping I guess. Its a shame really about his curse. Here we all are here to enjoy some good music and food and all this poor man can think about is getting drunk. I’ve seen those shakes before, I wish I could tell him about them, but I really don’t want to offend and possibly spoil the mood. Who knows, perhaps its better to let him drink himself silly this way.’

To his surprise Axim came over and his thoughts were a refreshing change of pace from the minds he had been in recently. Still he didn’t like how accurate they were to his own affliction and once he had refilled the wine bottle with Bluevein gold from his charm he decided to pointedly not take a sip from it.

“Thank you Axim.” He said, thinking about giving the boy a pat on the back but deciding it was a bit too condescending. He watched Axim find his seat for a tick, puzzling over how it fit in with the rest of what he had just learned when he remembered something Kyle had said on the beach about the next girl over who was sitting on a log with Senora and Stu. Tori, a Konti with apparently a special gift. Kyle hadn’t elaborated on her gift of course. Why would he say something useful. Instead the boy had been quite busy thoroughly trashing the girls reputation which made her suddenly all the more interesting to Cleon. He might not even need to read her mind if asked the right sort of question.

Walking over, he took the empty seat beside Tori and set the bottle beside him in the sand. Tori had been focused on watching Stu play but when he sat down she gave him a briefly surprised look that he tried to ease with a smile.

“Hey Tori. My name is Cleon. I was told that you have a special gift and I was wondering if you could tell me more about it. I can tell you about mine first if you want.” He said, pointing helpfully to the swirling Oceanus mark on his neck. Suddenly it felt a lot more awkward carrying that knife about in his sleeve but seeing as Kyle was still sitting nearby and that potentially there was a very threatening presence here, he decided to keep the knife exactly where it was. Slowly he drifted into Tori’s thoughts as his charm began to wane. It seemed like he was running out of time. He just had to hope he hadn’t missed something important by saving the four girls for last.

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Speckled Sorrows

Postby Cleon on May 29th, 2022, 9:11 pm

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“Hi Cleon. That’s Laviku’s mark right? Darcy has one just like it.” Tori said with a slight smile as she gently kicked her feet back and forth. Then she thought carefully for a moment before replying. “I’m not really supposed to talk about that. James says its best I keep it to myself, and then when I’ll know when its the right time to use that power.”

“Oh okay, well I can certainly understand that. I heard about Darcy’s little gift. Pretty cool, I can actually sense her mark with mine.” Cleon said with a gentle smile.

Tori giggled softly to herself. “You’re funny.”

Cleon’s face screwed up in slight confusion but then he shook his head, and ran his hands through his hair. “Thanks I think? Enjoy the rest of the party for me.” Cleon said, standing up and brushing his pants off. He felt awkward hanging around girls that weren’t related to him, and without the added benifit of his charm, he felt less likely to get any meaningful answers out of Tori, especially since he had just approached her out of the blue. It would be better to ask her again later with someone she was more familiar with. He still didn’t know quite what to think about Kyle. His thoughts didn’t seem regular for a boy his age, and he was bent on starting shite with the other children. It occurred to him as he was walking over to Stu, Buraga and Randal that Kyle was doing everything he could to throw off attention from himself which seemed very suspicious in retrospect.

Buraga seeing him approach walked a short ways away from the gathering and gestured him slightly over. “What did you learn?” He asked.

“Nothing too fruitful unfortunately. No one outright knows or admits that its them, but that boy Kyle is really suspicious. I think he gets off on everyone suffering from these curses, his thoughts relayed as much to me. He also has a bit of a superiority complex and seems to think that he has everything figured out. I well.. Not tonight, but after the last tenday.. When Hess.. Y’know.. Well he told me and Shade a lot about the other children. I mean a lot, like more than just some random bit of gossip he stumbled across. I think he’s been keeping tabs on all of them, trying to see what buttons he can push but why he would want to do that I have no clue. Unless.. Unless he’s trying to stir shite just to stir shite, cause a little chaos which sounds a lot like the servant of Rhysol we’re looking for. All I’m saying is that we should probably keep a closer eye on him. I’ll keep trying my charm on him in the meantime, and maybe can sneak up on him one of these days.” Cleon said.

Buraga shook his head. “No, don’t do that. Don’t do anything without another one of us present, preferably more because I don’t think even I could take whoever is behind this alone. I’ll let the others know what you’ve found out. For now, why don’t you go take a walk. You look pretty tired, and I think the children are getting a little suspicious about you prowling about. It might be making them uncomfortable and if Kyle is who you think he is, then that might make it harder for us to find anything out in the future. Come find one of us tomorrow when your charm refreshes and we’ll figure out what to do next.”

“Okay, I’ll do that. Thanks Buraga. Be seeing you.” Cleon said, walking away from the gathering down the beach to where he planned on gathering his thoughts. Tomorrow he would try again to find out Tori’s gift, and perhaps with the added benefit of his charm, he might actually get one step closer to figuring out a solution to these curses. As he walked he checked his bag again, surprised to see a small clay jar within. It was basically unremarkable on the outside but when he lifted the lid he saw within a collection of dried fruit, and an inscription on the lid that read 'Deepsea fruit candies'. As he inspected the jar further, he saw a piece of parchment that had been tucked inside of it, obscured by the pieces of fruit. Carefully he tugged the note free and unfolded it.

'Cleon: I know you will make good use of these. Although they might look unremarkable, so long as you keep a piece in your mouth you will be able to breathe underwater until the candied fruit dissolves. Please be careful, and resist swallowing one while you are underwater because the effect will cancel.

Yours sincerely,
A friend.'

Cleon rubbed at the underside of his chin thoughtfully as he held up the note and then stuffed it into his pocket. Replacing the jar in his bag, he added it too yet another thing that he would have to figure out soon.

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Speckled Sorrows

Postby Cleon on June 6th, 2022, 11:12 pm

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Grade Award!

Cleon:

Skills:


Investigation: 3
Observation: 1
Logic: 3
Planning: 2
Persuasion: 2
Rhetoric: 2
Socialization: 3
Subterfuge: 2

Lores:

Buraga: Appearance & Mannerisms
Subterfuge: Concealing a blade in your sleeve
Persuasion: Trying to bribe with personal favors
Kyle: Doesn’t think like a child
Kyle: Full of himself
Subterfuge: Attempting to conceal a reaction
Logic: Using a curse as an excuse
Dalton: Appearance & Mannerisms
Dalton: Afraid of being noticed
Dalton: Afraid of being enslaved
Axim: Appearance & Mannerisms
Axim: Compassionate towards Dalton
Axim: Familiar with alcohol abuse
Tori: Appearance & Mannerisms
Darcy: Marked by Laviku
Deepsea fruit candies: Appearance & Usage

Feel free to pm me with questions or concerns about your grade, and don’t forget to edit your grade request! :)
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Cleon
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