Merchant of Menace

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Kiran
Posts: 615
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 12:21 pm
Location: United Kingdom

Merchant of Menace

Unread post by Kiran » Tue Feb 19, 2019 8:08 pm

It had been raining.

The cold drizzle had soaked the man's clothing to the skin, the wet fabric clinging to his body as he settled himself inside the tavern, the two strangers across from him curious to his eyes, one was clearly a proud Amnian nobleman, the other, one of those female devil folk, gorgeous but deadly.

"So... what should we name the group then?"

The three sat with drinks in hands long into the night that evening, ideas and plans circling in the poorly lit room, the three faces flushed with excitement and possibilities. Not anyone could have foreseen nor known what the trio would create in the many moons to come.

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"Devil worshippers! - Necromancer scum! Cultists!"

The gathered group by the watchtower shouted and cursed at the caravans crew as it cantered past, the emblem of the Golden Wheel was upon the new wagons and carts shining in the rare sunlight, the wood freshly waxed, and the horses, proud stallions, perfect for long trips - though their eyes had become fearful at all the sudden noise and spectacle, nostrils flaring as they whinnied.

"Go back to Amn, you Bastards! - "You are not welcome here!" "What are you hiding in your caravan?! Is it children for the devils!?"

The large crowd on the side of the road kept howling abuse at the merchant train. it was a rather mixed group of people, all from knights in shining armour to hooded men and women in black attire, even some local adventurers were there, some joining in, some more confused and curious to what was going on. Some of the merchant folk would in turn also be shouting back insults, a woman, in particular, would be the loudest of them all, she wore shining armour cursing and calling back to the gathered group on the side of the road

"Filthy fisherfolk! Bastard Northerners! Go back to your damned fish wives, you knaves!"

The noise had reached its crescendo, the tension was filling the air with every rancid insult, some of the men and women carefully placed a hand to their side, ensuring weapons were at hand both for comfort and for what was perhaps about to break out. The noise had become so much so that even the Flaming Fist had become involved, the name calling and insults flying over the Fist officers head as he tried to make sense of all the commotion.

The day after the man who had met the other two many moons ago sat in his usual spot in the inn at Nashkel, nursing a mug of ale in the silence of a rented office there. A pensive look on his face as he was considering all that had transpired since he had met those two, all from the siege of Tymount which they had barely escaped to the betrayals within the merchant group that they had built. The man took another sip of his ale, the taste sour upon lip and tongue, shaking his head as he considered the days in front of him, he was so lost in thought that he didn't hear the soft creak of a door opening, nor the shadow drawing across him as the person stepped into view.

"Kiran, can we possibly... talk?"

The man would look up at the person speaking, eyes slightly widened in surprise as it was clearly the last person he expected to see visiting him in his private time. A slight nod from the man would indicate for the person to go on, the mug of ale still in hand.

"Do you know anyone who would... perhaps be willing to.... kill someone for me?"
Player of:

Damian Pascal, Healer for hire - Run away/dead. - Background - Corruption from Within
Amenthes Serb, Thayan Knight - Gone missing/Supposed dead Background
Tamzim Renima, Scout and mercenary - Handed over to the fist. Background
Kiran, Golden Wheel

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Kiran
Posts: 615
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 12:21 pm
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Merchant of Menace

Unread post by Kiran » Sun Mar 03, 2019 8:02 am

Even the rain could not cover the stench.

The blood was in his clothes, soaking him through to the cold damp skin beneath. The rancid iron scent was sending waves of panic and nausea through his system, his heart racing as sweat broke out on his forehead. what had meant to be a simple meeting between two factions had become murder, cold, brutal and instant. There could be no witnesses. The rain kept pelting down on the man's face, his moustache soaked and dripping on the corpse below him, his own gaze met by a lifeless one.

It had been a ten-day or so since the incident, yet the memory still lingered perversely in the man's mind, the half bottle of putrid rum he had been given as a gift doing little to dispel those memories, alone as he was, in his rented office in Nashkel. even another heavy chug of the rum did little more than make him recall it more clearly, though it also brought up recent memories from earlier in the day, buzzing of the large insects, the humid air and the odd snarl like language of the lizardmen. He could still feel the fetid swamp, his boots near the fire in his rented office, drying from the mud and cold of the swamp.


The leader, Derik Ranloss, Director of the Bladestone Foundation, had with some difficulty due to the stubbornness of adventurers, loosely organised the small army into two groups, taking the right flank himself with the large force as the gap was much wider, more space for the fiendish troll army to push through with their assortment of minions and lesser devils.

"Here they come!"


One of the forward scouts, perhaps it had been Nathan, maybe Firozara, it was hard to remember this specific moment exactly, but they started the call, and the cry was echoed down the lines. The nervous men at the siege engines, including the moustached man himself, shaking, no, trembling with evident fear...

WHOOOOOOSH!

The first machine of war fired its deadly salvo, a beautiful arc missing the massive army of trolls and fiendish kin alike, a soft thump echoing in the moors as it's ammunition simply hit the ground, creating a massive crater. the Engineers operating the behemoths cursed and screamed as they tried to adjust the weapons. The sound was drowned out by the roar of the oncoming horde of minor devils and heavily armoured trolls. They were coming closer now, their swift movements becoming a stampede.

WHOOOOOOOOOOOSHHHH!

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Bodies of creatures flew everywhere, some instantaneously turned into red mist as others had limbs torn from them in a maelstorm of destruction. The second shot from the siege machines had been more precise, nearly hitting the center mass of the oncoming devil army, the cheers from the engineers and the Moustached man himself once more submerged beneath the clash of battle as the two sides smashed into one another. Over it, you would hear the squelch and screams of trolls as the Archdruid of the Elder Circle had transformed himself into a giant bronze dragon, the titans teeth and claws rending into the trolls as they tried to avoid the creatures deadly weapons, some were stomped upon beneath its mighty feet,the mud of the swamp swallowing them up. Others swiftly incinerated as it turned its massive serpentine gaze upon them, its breath a fiery inferno, setting all alight that it touched, screams and howls quickly silenced, yet the horde kept coming.

From the Moustached man's vantage point on the hill with the siege equipment, he turned away from the destruction that the large dragon and the other folk were inflicting upon the masses of trolls, turning his sights on the other group. The trolls had met the shield wall there, however many were covered and riddled with arrows, their lifeblood draining from them even before they engaged with the defenders, their blows were weakened from the blood loss as the smaller group of adventurers dealt mercilessly with the trolls and smaller fiends alike...

WHOOOOOOOOOSHHHSSSSHHHHH!

Another deadly salvo was released, yet this one never reached the ground, a large shadowy shape loomed in the air, darkened wings spread wide, the whole battlefield going silent just for a moment, the impact of the siege engines explosive shots not even staggering the beast above, it's massive red eyes scanning the field as it let, and for a split second it felt as if they met the Moustached man’s eyes, just for a second...

Something had shattered.

The man would look down to see blood once more again, though this time his own. Shards of broken glass in his hand as he had crushed the now empty rum bottle, his fist clenched, knuckles white as a bone. The blood on his hand swiftly changed before him, it became that of that man's lifeless corpse a ten-day ago, laying on the floor covered in blood.. the eyes would open.. horns would sprout from the man's forehead, his eyes red.. they were laughing...

The man would after some moments go and find a basin to clean and pick the glass shards from his damaged hand, his eyes reflected in the water as he considered a woman's request to him recently..

"Say, Kiran, you wouldnt happen to know where I could hire a thief?"
Player of:

Damian Pascal, Healer for hire - Run away/dead. - Background - Corruption from Within
Amenthes Serb, Thayan Knight - Gone missing/Supposed dead Background
Tamzim Renima, Scout and mercenary - Handed over to the fist. Background
Kiran, Golden Wheel

User avatar
Kiran
Posts: 615
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 12:21 pm
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Merchant of Menace

Unread post by Kiran » Sun Apr 14, 2019 9:16 am

The rain splattered repeatedly against the roof of the small office.

Baldur’s gate eastern districts typical noise, such as the cry of hawkers and heralds alike, was drowned out by the incessant pitter-patter of the rain. The tiny office there had a smell of dampness to it. The merchant sat across from the two hooded figures and would wait for them to continue their report, his own expression calm, yet unable to hide his impatience as the merchant's moustache would brittle briefly whilst one of the hooded men took a sip from an ale tankard.

"Where is it then?"

The balding merchant could not keep his peace any longer, placing another bag in front of the leader of the two hooded figures.

"Ah.. sorry, it is thirsty work ye' know... anyway, we buried the body in Soubar, like yer asked, and told yer boys there about it. I don't think 'em other buggers saw us, or really cared truth be told...

The hooded man would reach across, the rain from his thick coat spilling excess water unto the merchant ledger beneath it, as he grabbed the bag of coin, making it disappear into his own pockets as if it was never there.


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"You have my thanks, and my gold, gentlemen."

The merchant would say these words, unable to hide a slight smile as the two hooded figures would nod, speak the usual words - if you ever need us for more work, let us know - and make their goodbyes. They headed out into the pouring drench outside the tiny office, leaving behind two wet chairs and an even wetter ledger. The balding merchant with the moustache did not seem to mind, thinking back to a conversation he had the same day, his smile widening a tad more.

"Will I ever be asked to hurt innocents...?"

The hunter asked the question softly, the words clear and precise as he stared at the Balding merchant, easily able to read the man's body language whilst he appraised the mustached man.

"I can't promise that they will always be guilty..."

The merchant's words were also soft and to the point, his own skills in reading the hunter merely a show, the hunter giving nothing away with either gesture or a slight blink, his stare unflinching. The hunter would take in the words, clearly digesting them, trying to find meaning in them... the merchant, however, did not have the hunters patience and would say softly...

"I am not a wicked man..."

The merchant's said into the silence, the words were perhaps more so for himself than the predator who shared the room with him currently... again, words were spoken softly.

"No.. but you are a cold and calculated one"

The hunter's reply did not need any pause, the words were thrown back to the merchant without any prejudice or judgment, it was simply as the man saw it.

"You have wanted this from the very first day we met, Kiran."

The Merchant would likely try to lie to a different person, but the hunter's eyes would likely pick up the falsehood... he was after all a calculating man, and this specific calculation meant he had to speak truthfully, and simply.

"Yes, with you protecting me, people will think twice before they put a hand on me."

Moments would pause as the hunter turned away from the balding merchant, the merchant's scalp showing a slightly raw red patch, the man had clearly through the talk been picking and scratching, welts of red showing where his nails had dug too deeply, the pockmarked skin dripping nearly invisible tiny drops of blood, easily seen by the hunter however before he turned away. There was a pause in the room, a deep breath.

"I accept."


The merchant would now smile, not so perfect teeth creasing into an actual grin as he didn't even try to hide it, what would be the point, he thought. He then proceeded to take out a massive ledger, filled with notes, both for work, notes and private sketches for himself. He turned to a page which had the hunters name listed, some notes the hunter easily picked out, and a lot of blank space where the merchant carefully placed some chalk to, looking to the hunter. His words were full of meaning

"Tell me... everything."
Player of:

Damian Pascal, Healer for hire - Run away/dead. - Background - Corruption from Within
Amenthes Serb, Thayan Knight - Gone missing/Supposed dead Background
Tamzim Renima, Scout and mercenary - Handed over to the fist. Background
Kiran, Golden Wheel

User avatar
Kiran
Posts: 615
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 12:21 pm
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Merchant of Menace

Unread post by Kiran » Mon May 20, 2019 3:30 pm

The cobbled street was covered in rain.

Each step as precarious as the one before it, the slippery surface making the balding merchant hang onto to the building on his side, the small alleyways become more and more narrow till he could with a stretch reach either side of it. he knew he had returned home finally to Crimnor as two hooded individuals stepped out from the oppressing darkness, one showing a glint of a smile, the other would also show a glint, that of his dagger. the tone of the mans was tough to place, sort of soft yet somehow it also filled one with the certainty he may stab you for no reason at all, the merchant tried to cover the visible tremble that was running through his body while he spoke

"I have a letter for your masters.."

The merchant would lower his head respectfully, knowing what kind of people he was dealing with now, though some sweat would escape from him, he would carefully take out a handkerchief as well as the letter, wiping his forehead with one, then handing over the other, hand shaking a bit.

"And are you perhaps able to tell us a bit what this letter is about...maybe you could give us a little information, Kiran?"

The now kneeling and sweating bald merchant would shake his head carefully, acknowledging that he did not know the content of the letter, nor had he opened it to find out. The man who had shown him the dagger chuckled softly and would simply place the letter away into his pocket.

"Say hello to the others... as always we thank you and the others for their payments, always on time, always delivered in the same way. For your sake, we hope this continues.."

By the time the balding and sweating merchant looked up, there was no one to be seen, only a dark alleyway greeted him... with a sigh of relief he got up from the cobbled alleyway, it would be a long way back to Baldurs gate.

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Crunch! Crack!

Blood splurted everywhere. The sudden agony flared in the merchant's brain, nose instantly pulverized, broken, blinding him. The blood made him gag as it came into his mouth, he pushed out with his hands blindly to grab at whatever it was that had hit him, only to be met by an inhumane strength. Large hands grabbed onto the merchant, slamming him with incredible force against the thin wooden walls, his whole body jarring as it felt as if his very skeleton was being broken.

"You are going to give me answers, you piking snake...!"

The hooded man's voice was filled with venom as he held the smaller balding merchant up against the walls, one hand on the throat of the other, squeezing.

"Never -ever- call me your lapdog again, I kneel to -none!"

The larger man slammed the balding merchant up against the wall once more, choking him still

"Where are the plans you promised me... why are you working with those Banites!?"

The balding merchant could not respond, his throat was being tightened so firmly that no voice could be summoned, no spell could be uttered, he was dying... a soft croak escaped him... Finally, the larger hooded figure set the merchant down, seeing that he couldn't talk, though his anger was still evident, his muscles and body tense, ready to spring at any wrong word the merchant might say.

The balding and now sweating merchant knew he could not say any wrong words now, or he might just well die in this very room...
Player of:

Damian Pascal, Healer for hire - Run away/dead. - Background - Corruption from Within
Amenthes Serb, Thayan Knight - Gone missing/Supposed dead Background
Tamzim Renima, Scout and mercenary - Handed over to the fist. Background
Kiran, Golden Wheel

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