Another abduction, and a Dwarf's plea

edited November 2020 in Roleplay Logs
Amidst the continued killings and kidnappings in Bloodloch, a nameless dwarf comes to remind us of the civilians' perspective. Also, good to hear about Raynard again.

(Tells): A Dwarf citizen tells you, "Please, Advocate. Please find them."

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "Are they here? In Tiyen?"

(Tells): A Dwarf citizen tells you, " I don't know. Forgive my forwardness, Advocate. I'm scared."

Dimly lit corner of the market.
The tenebrous cavern ceiling looms ominously high overhead. This passageway is at a bend in the tunnels that make up the market, and seems to serve as a makeshift dump. Insects buzz and crawl over the oozing refuse, the castoffs and trash from the merchants and patrons of this area. The stinking pile luckily does not spill over a stone barrier that has been set up around it, but nonetheless people tend to hurry through this section of the market. A rough passage leads to the southeast, newly shapen from the surrounding rock. Barely visible, a large gelatinous cube waits here. A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground. A glowing red flame-shaped sigil has been left here. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil.
You see exits leading north, east, south, and west.

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "I understand. Please, if there is anything strange you have noticed - anything at all, do let me know."

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "The more leads we have, the sooner the... misled shall be dealt with."

(Tells): A Dwarf citizen tells you, "I did overhear something...I'm not sure what to make of it."

You tense your muscles, extending your claws to their full, fearsome length.

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach Pentas's mind: "Ah. There we have a number of possible information: age of the speaker? Gender and race? Where did you hear them, and what did you overhear?"

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach Pentas's mind: "Hm, misaether."

(Tells): Through the ether, Pentas utters to you, "Mm?"

(Tells): Through the ether, Pentas utters to you, "Ahh."

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "Ah. There we have a number of possible information available from that: the age of the speaker? Gender and race? Where did you hear them, and what did you overhear?"

It is now noon on Tisday, the 21st of Khepary, year 491 of the Midnight Age.

(Bloodloch): A humble bellman says, "Noon is upon us - get to the shadows."

(Tells): A Dwarf citizen tells you, "Could w...could we meet?"

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "Have you a safe place in mind, or shall I suggest a location?"

(Tells): A Dwarf citizen tells you, "I don't know. Somewhere outside the city, Advocate? I don't leave much but..."

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "A moment. I think I can find a good place."

Giant hedge sculptures along the garden path.
The sun glares down from its noonday throne, blood red and relentless through the sky's bleak haze. The path widens somewhat here, opening into more of a small meadow. Lining the path to the southwest is an eye-catching assortment of hedges with withered leaves crowding one another, all clipped by an excellent gardener to make figures and shapes, creating a very strange kind of beauty. Likenesses of different races of sentient beings, as well as several animals and even a waterfall, seem frozen in action by the life-sapped branches. The brilliant glass tower rises to the northeast, with the path running alongside in both directions. A single corpse flower lies here, smelling of rot and decay. A page meant to be inserted into some tome is here, the delicate structure of it challenged by the wild surroundings.
You see exits leading southeast and northwest.

(Tells): On tendrils of air, you let your velvety voice reach a Dwarf citizen's mind: "This place ought to be safe."

Her silken robes gliding behind her, Sequa enters from the southeast.

Sequa the procurator inclines her head politely to you.

Sequa the procurator says, "Lovely to see you again, Galilei. As always, I'm happy to help you however I can while you're here."

You say to Sequa the procurator, "All I believe I will need is safety - which the temple walls can provide, I am sure. Thank you, Procurator."

Sequa the procurator says, "My job as procurator involves knowing as much as possible about the workings of this temple and those who inhabit it. I'm also responsible for making sure esteemed visitors such as yourself find what you're looking for!"

Sequa the procurator's eyes twinkle enchantingly at you.

Sequa the procurator says, "If you'd like me to be more specific, just ASK me what my responsibilities are."

A Dwarf citizen walks in from the southeast.

Have I made a mistake? Choosing this place? If - ah.

Huffing and puffing - and very wet - a Dwarf citizen enters. She immediately flinches on seeing someone with you, body half-turning the other way as if prepared to flee.

You have emoted: Galilei's black eyes flicker to a Dwarf citizen, and she turns from Sequa the procurator to face the newcomer. "Ah, you made it here safely. Don't be afraid." The last three words cut through the air, voice softer than one might imagine one of her kind might have. "It is a hassle to reach here without a boat or wings, as you have noticed. And we stand on the Ultraist's ground, though She has departed. Please," the word is spoken like an offering. "Come closer. Easier for me to protect you as well, though I doubt much will happen today, here."

The words stop a Dwarf citizen's apparent act of departure, though the woman doesn't approach closer. She eyes Sequa the procurator, shaking slightly; whether from her soaked status or in fear is unclear.

Clad in loose, flowing blue robes, this tall Tsol'aa woman always appears ready to help. Her attire is dyed a deep, oceanic blue and tends to cause her rather slender figure to appear bulkier than it truly is. Her shoulder-length ebony hair is tied back strictly, and her narrow, chestnut-hued irises are constantly ablaze with curiosity and diligence. She is called 'Sequa.'
Sequa the procurator looks weak and feeble.

You have emoted: Galilei half-smiles at Sequa the procurator, her previous words softening the look of her face. "Procurator, it seems our guest might find privacy more comfortable, if you might?"

Wordlessly, for a change, Sequa the procurator departs.

Sequa glides out to the southeast, escorting her trailing robes.

This Dwarf citizen, dressed in simple clothes, is nondescript, indistinguishable from many denizens found throughout Bloodloch.
A Dwarf citizen looks weak and feeble.
She is undead.

A Dwarf citizen cautiously approaches you now, stooping into a low and formal bow. As she straightens, before speaking, she reaches into a pocket.

A Dwarf citizen starts to wield an eye sigil in her left hand.

A Dwarf citizen casts the eye sigil at the ground, and it bursts with a flash of light.

You have emoted: Galilei's eyes trail a Dwarf citizen's movements, even as she returns the bow with an incline of her head. Her soldier's stance remains, claws still outstretched, and she looks about once more for threats before attending to a Dwarf citizen.

Assured at privacy, a Dwarf citizen finally speaks, her voice shaky. "S-sorry if I overstep, Advocate. Some of my friends mentioned you and...and us civilians usually don't trouble you folks but it's just...they took him, he's gone and I'm just so..." Suddenly aware that she's rambling, the Dwarf catches herself, falling silent before sinking into another even lower bow.

You have emoted: A faint rustling of grass brings the figure of Galilei low. She kneels on one knee, closing the height difference in one swoop, and waits for a Dwarf citizen to lift up her head. When she does, she would find the Consanguine offering her undivided attention.

Rather than up, a Dwarf citizen goes down, plopping down in an exhausted heap upon the floor. "They took my friend," she says, defeat slumping her shoulders. "He was one of of the ones who were freed."

You have emoted: Galilei's eyes snap open. "Those who would call our leaders slaves to the Light have abducted someone who was bound for Enorian, yes?" Her hand rests on the earth. "What can you remember about his kidnapping?"

From her seat on the floor, a Dwarf citizen is a rather piteous figure, clothes rumpled and wet. At the very least, the steady seat has stopped her shaking. "He was one of the earlier ones. He was still working for the Dominion. Raynard would always talk about truly joining their ranks one day..."

A Dwarf citizen says, "We were to meet but he never arrived. Nobody else has seen him this week either."

You have emoted: Galilei's lips move. "I remember him." But she has not known him. The recollection, however, does offer her something to hold onto, something to let herself be invested in. "Have you visited his usual haunts before he was taken? He was not acting strange, or in places you would not expect him to be?"

A Dwarf citizen shakes her head, unkempt hair flailing about with the force of her movements. "No. He refused to change his routine, to be careful. Had full faith in the Keeper and the Overlords, Raynard did. Always said they would protect us." A wistful smile appears on her face. "His enthusiasm was infectious. But..." and the smile dies. "But now he's gone too." Staring forlornly ahead, the Dwarf appears on the verge of tears.

You have emoted: Always said they would. The air is, suddenly, a touch colder. Galilei looks up, behind her shoulder, holds her gaze with something unseen, then the taut, thrumming chill dissipates to leave only Galilei and a Dwarf citizen - the departing feels like a sigh. "I saw him last in the Dominion's chambers, miss." Questions do not immediately come; she speaks gently, hoping words will soothe. "So alert, powerful, and undeniably glad of his new life. The room was such a large one, comforts abound. I can imagine his enthusiasm. It would have suited him."

I can't ruin this, I have more to ask - focus on him... please. Be calm...

With a start, a Dwarf citizen suddenly seems to remember why she's here. She glances furtively about, assuring herself of your isolation, before continuing. "I did overhear something. In the market one day. A group arguing over prices and caravans and locations."

After a brief pause - and more furtive glancing - a Dwarf citizen expands upon that innocuous situation. "And then one said that there were too many watching, they should just slay them all and be done with it."

You have emoted: "The Chiav." Galilei's words fall low. "I know of more who were taken. The girl tending to the roulette wheel - " She interrupts herself. "We don't yet know much concrete about this, miss. Save for the fact that they wish the leadership to be replaced, the Light to be banished, and - on what you have told me - that they are willing to kill." The other hand, the one upon her knee, taps once at its perch. "Did you hear about the locations?"

The deepening dusk yields to impenetrable darkness as night claims the land.
It is now dusk on Tisday, the 21st of Khepary, year 491 of the Midnight Age.

Slave trade?

What weapons will they involve to pull down the Overlords?

Weapons that require smuggling off citizens? And where could they be headed...?

A Dwarf citizen shakes her head glumly. "I wasn't paying much attention until they talked about killing. Then I turned and ran. I - I'm - I'm sorry. I was too scared." Tears well up in her eyes again, slumping down. "Please find them."

(Bloodloch): A humble bellman says, "The shadows shall soon embrace us."

You have emoted: "I will do my best." The promise is simple. Galilei draws out a sophisticated wrap-around apron from her pack - handkerchiefs are handier than one might think, and one should not be without them - and hands it to a Dwarf citizen. The cloth is wide enough to serve as a cloak for one of her size. "I will need to notify the rest of the city of this, when more are awake, miss. Some may come to ask you for more information, though I will explain all you have told me to them. Would you be willing to speak to more people?"

You give a sophisticated wrap-around apron to a Dwarf citizen.

A Dwarf citizen accepts the apron, dabbing at her eyes with it. Holding it in her arms, the Dwarf bounds to her feet in alarm. "No, please, Advocate, no. I don'...I don't want to be taken too. Give them the information but please don't point them to me."

A Dragon's word is her bond...

You have emoted: Galilei nods silently, the gentle smile from before surfacing once more. "Keep the apron," she says. "Now, I would ask you whether you would like me to escort you back to Bloodloch, but before I do - one last thing I need to ask you."

You say to a Dwarf citizen, "Have you heard of the 'Actors' Guild?'"

A Dwarf citizen shakes her head.

A Dwarf citizen says, "It's not familiar to me, Advocate. Sorry."

You have emoted: "Thank you for coming to speak." Galilei gets to her feet. "Fold the apron up, miss. Less recognisable that way. Shall we return?"

Instead, a Dwarf citizen drapes the apron about herself, a shield against the elements. "Thank you for the offer but I think I will explore a while. Don't get much chance to leave the city. Clear my mind. And...people will notice if a civilian is seen with you, Advocate."

You have emoted: "I suppose us both being undead might not be enough to keep eyebrows from rising." Galilei looks at a Dwarf citizen for a moment. "Mrenadh is a safe place, miss. I have known it to be. Be safe exploring, and call for us should you need help." A blink, then, "And I realised - I never asked your name. Do not worry - I can keep it safe."

A Dwarf citizen says, "If it's all the same to you, Advocate, I would prefer not to say."

A Dwarf citizen bows respectfully to you.

A Dwarf citizen walks out to the northwest.

I hope I did the right thing.

You begin to flap your wings powerfully, and rise quickly up into the firmament.

Ah - the children... they'll be afraid of her.

I can't worry about her. Or them. The job is done.


  • Galilei said:

    Also, good to hear about Raynard again.


    (Bloodloch): Gyana says, "There's a corpse at 9140."

    Howling Square nearing Lava Run.
    The tenebrous cavern ceiling looms ominously high overhead. The pathway here seems cool to the touch. The air temperature drops several degrees, and beyond, in the darkness, are sighted several buildings. Small torches light the pathway here, illuminating the smooth walk towards the business district. The air tingles, as if filled with the mystic death of the deepest night. A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground. A glowing red flame-shaped sigil has been left here. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil. The naked corpse of a servant is here. His head is gruesomely separated, laid to rest atop his chest. Carved into his forehead are the words Might not Light! Covered in spiked, black armor, a midnight black stallion trots menacingly here. There are 3 corpses of a skittering onyx eld here. Oozing blood, a gruesomely decapitated corpse litters the cavern.
    You see exits leading east, southwest, and northwest.

    The naked corpse of a servant is here. His head is gruesomely separated, laid to rest atop his chest. Carved into his forehead are the words Might not Light! He was called 'Raynard.'
    He weighs about 175 pound(s).
    He is loyal to the Dominion.

    With a sad frown, Gyana says, "This was the servant that was missing."

    Elene says, "Oh no."

    You have emoted: Galilei stares down at the decapitated corpse, very still.

    I'm sorry.

    Neoma enters from the southwest, riding a majestic gryphon.

    You say to Neoma, "Well. We have found him."

    Gyana laces her hands together at her waist, looking at Neoma with a nod. "He was the missing one."

    Neoma says, "Aye but not how we had hoped."

    Drifting closer to the corpse of a decapitated servant, Elene's still dripping gown forms a trail behind her. The woman glances down at the separated head, and then at the rest of the body. "What was the story behind this servant?"

    Neoma eyes the corpse of a decapitated servant, giving him the once over.

    He never *wanted* the Light.

    Neoma performs a quick search of the surroundings.

    Gyana says, "I remember he contacted me directly, months and months ago. He was a polite, civil man, and spoke with the intention of becoming part of the Dominion. He was the first of our freed slaves to be given a place in the guildhall."

    Neoma says, "Sadly he thought he was safe in the guildhall, as we did."

    Neoma says, "That is the disturbing part."

    Gyana nods, peering at Raynard's corpse.

    You have emoted: Still staring at the corpse, Galilei says, "So. Civilians, those who had experience working their trades, likely looking to be sold or disposed of another way, now properly killed off and left as a message for us."

    Quietly, you say, "Raynard had faith in the Overlords, my contact said. No wonder he was the first to go."

    Ronka enters from the northwest, riding a menacingly-armored stallion.

    Neoma says, "Misplaced faith you think?"

    Her voice a silken caress, Elene says, "To those whom killed him - definitely so."

    You say to Neoma, "A possible clue, Empress."

    Neoma nods her head sagely.

    Ronka says, "I have found a sack of coins in the tavern, but I am unsure if it isn't something lost by any of Bloodloch inhabitants."

    Ronka gives a sack of coins to Neoma.

    Neoma shakes her head in disagreement.

    Gyana says to Ronka, "I think that sack is usually there."

    Comprehension flashes across Ronka's face.

    Ronka says, "Oh well."

    Her voice a silken caress, Elene says, "They have made their stance quite clear, with the posters, with the tapestry. They do not believe that the Overlords are leading the city right, and so they have decided to take action with their own hands." A pause. "But I am not quite sure why they thought killing this servant would change anything."

    Neoma says, "Exactly, the innocent pay the price."

    Abruptly, you say, "A fine way to go about it, killing civilians they wish to be better led."

    Neoma gives a pained sigh.

    Ronka says, "And what happened to Fesina? Kidnapped as well?"

    Neoma says, "Even if and this is an IF one of the Overlords is not what we think, it certainly does not mean all are corrupted as the poster said."

    Thoughtfully, Elene says, "However, what is clear, it seems, from what has been shared by Galilei through the city aether, is that they do not currently seem to have a leader figure. These killings and attacks appear random and meaningless."

    You have emoted: Galilei has not taken her eyes off the mangled body of Raynard, calm still spreading over whatever emotion that has been sparked. "And they are growing desperate."

    Neoma says, "Time is running out for them."

    You say, "Fesina may not be safe."

    Elene says, "She might be dead."

    In a dejected whisper, Gyana says, "Very few seem to be safe."

    Neoma vows that someone will rue the day.

    Neoma says, "I must rest, good work on being so vigilant."

    Neoma gracefully hops off of a majestic gryphon.
    Neoma slaps a majestic gryphon on the rump and sends it trotting off.

    Elene's gaze rakes over the words carved into the forehead of the corpse of a decapitated servant.
    "Might, not Light," she quietly utters, testing the words upon her tongue. And then does she depart with a swift turn upon the spot. "I'll go patrolling later."

    Elene leaves to the southwest.
    She is followed by a rotting skeletal stallion.

    Quietly, you say, "I shall watch the new tunnel."


    [Copied writings of a previous letter are penned below:]

    Greetings to the Keeper.

    Empress Neoma has reminded us of Project 1462's existence. I cannot be sure if that is the proper place for information on recent events, but I have procured some that ought to be archived and made accessible. I myself have felt the need for a collection of findings the public may go over, and I hope this will help.

    21st Khepary 491 MA: A friend of a freed Dominion bloodslave approached me to ask for help. The slave in question had no reason to seek the Light, as he had been hoping to become Consanguine one day. He was scheduled to meet with my contact but never arrived, while my contact overheard a group in the market arguing over prices, caravans, and locations.

    My contact has failed to recall specifics save for one of them saying that there were too many watching, they "should just slay them all and be done with it." I am assuming this means whatever is scheduled to happen in late Khepary may not come to pass as quickly, but that remains to be seen.

    My contact also has no knowledge of the 'Actors' Guild.'

    Should further information fall into my hands, I shall write to you of them so they may be archived.

    G. Ladoran

    [And further:]

    The freed slave Raynard has been found dead at 9140. He was decapitated and found bearing the same slogan, "Might, not Light," as the others on his forehead. Raynard is said to have had faith in the current Overlords.

    The contact who spoke to me wished to remain anonymous, for fear of being taken or killed, and did not wish to be questioned by anyone else. So I ask specifically yourself, for now, to please keep an eye out for an undead Dwarven woman who possesses a white apron, possibly wrapped about herself. I have left her to explore Mrenadh after our conversation.

    - G. Ladoran

  • Finding Raynard's corpse was the actual saddest thing. :(
  • edited November 2020
  • edited November 2020
    This event is racking up a body count faster than Les Misérables and just as political.

    I want more.
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