Stout Galius Square
Camillian scurried in the shadows of the long hallway. Through stain glass windows, a diffuse light fell over his frail body. The festivities from the room beyond these windows reached him by sound and smell. The varying nobility was spending their money fast this evening, on gambling and drinking under the supervision of their host. They would not notice him while he used their murmur as cover.
In his hand he held the emerald statue of Oriana, depicted as a many faced, scarcely clad, Sylvari woman. It was his price this evening, and it would bring him great profit. The young man, only two years away from being named a child, paced swiftly to the next door, when suddenly a voice called out from the other end of the hallway.
“Stop! You filthy little thief!”
Camillian was used to being caught. Years of experience had taught him to dodge and run, and only look back once many streets had passed.
A ray of white energy sheered over his head, and shards of stone erupted from a nearby wall as the spell hit it. The young thief ran, flung open the next door and turned a corner. He fled over a steep stairway and through another door. He suddenly found himself amongst the wealthy gamblers and guests, who did not seem to take notice of him. He was too insignificant, in his ragged garb.
Quickly, he fought his way through the brocade, silk and suede mass, to an exit on the other side of the room. He slipped under the grasp of a guard, and found himself in the main hall of the courthouse. The double doors leading outside were closed, but a window next to them stood open, and Camillian flung himself through.
Then he was standing on the streets, and a gloved hand grabbed him by the shoulder. Ormander’s Orphanage
The orphanage looks much like it was when you last saw it. A new coat of paint has been applied and is starting to weather off again already. Nothing has changed. It still rests on the corner of a crossway of allies, far from the heart of the city. From the shadows of garbage cans and pauperized buildings you can feel the eyes of curious children upon you.
Above the door, the silver seal of the orphanage, the Ram of Drannon on the outstretched hand of the god Falloes, shines brightly. It is the most valuable object in four blocks, but you know better than to think it is a miracle that it has not been stolen yet.
Inside, you hear the shouts of combat from the training room. Ormander is standing with his back turned to you, his attention on the running fight. He laughs at a clever move, but suddenly a young girl is at his side. Her cloths look worn, but she has been well cared for.
She whispers something in his ear, and the orphanage’s patron turns towards you. He has grown old. His coppery, wrinkled face lights up when he sees you.
“Ah, welcome, my dear child. You must be weary from your travels. Please follow me next door. I’ll pour you some tea!”
He takes you to a private room that you recognize as his office. Several chairs have been pulled up, as if he is awaiting more visitors. He asks you to get comfortable as he goes off to get some hot water from the fireplace.
(OOC: first come, first goes for now. The first one to post, is the first one there at the orphanage. The rest comes in after him/her)
Posted on 2007-12-05 at 09:17:35.
Edited on 2007-12-05 at 09:18:09 by Almerin
As kastor walked through the streets he remembered the vague memories of the shops that he stole from and the teachers he had been taught from. he remembers the armorers as good friends and sees the weaponsmiths but then looks away because of the reminder of the crusade. Kastor meets the orphanage with a smile on his face this is rare for such a proud, arrogant dwarf he fondly remembers the the siver ram on the orphange and as he walks in he could hear the familiar sounds of combat but these sounds were not familiar in this place maybe something has changed. while kastor pondered on this he saw his good friend Ormander although he had no bond with this fellow he knew him to be the closest thing to family he had.
"Ormander, you called me to you and i would like to know why as you have dragged me away from the crusades into chakran"
"But, i suppose you are the nearest thing to a parent i have so fire away."
Percifeer was enjoying the walk back home so much that catching sight of the town was a bit of a downer for her. She enjoyed adventuring a great deal, and found the idea of stopping a bothersome bit of tie-down. Still, she was glad to see her family again. When she arrived at the gates, the guards mentioned citizenship papers, something she only vaguely recalled from her youth. She sighed.
"It's four Jesfa a day then?" She asked, reaching into the sack dangling at her side and pulling out a gold and 2 jesfa. She handed them to the guard. "Three days should be enough time. If I'm here longer than that, I'll surely have time to pay the rest." She knew that three days was far too long. She wanted to be gone tomorrow evening at the latest, but in the unlikely case she was tied up with Ormander, she wanted to have time to focus on that rather than worrying about silly fees.
She stretched her arms over her head and stepped into the villiage. The sights were relatively familiar, but what she noticed first was the smell. All the smells of her youth were here, and had been all this time. She smiled and dropped her arms to her sides, starting in the direction of the orphanage.
It hadn't changed much on the outside, the hand of Falloes shining brightly in the sun. But the inside sounded different. Combat...that was different. It must've been expanded. All training she remembered went on outside the orphanage. Ormander usually just cared for the children.
"Where's Mr. Galios?" she spoke, kneeling to be on the level with one of the children. When directed to his office, she turned and snuck to the door, peeking in at the old man who was much more worn than she remembered him. Another orphan had arrived already, it appeared, as there was someone else in the room who looked to be carrying a good deal of equipment also.
She jumped out into the doorway with outstretched arms and shouted "Ormander!" in her most delighted voice. She rushed over to hug him and give him a kiss on the cheek.
Athur had enjoyed the journey but he had hopes that it was nothing serious that Ormander needed. He arrived at the town had to wonder if it would ever change. He paid his 4 days of citizenship one day he would think about being a citizen for good but right now he wasn’t worried about it. He knew some of the guards some on good terms and some on bad just like he knew the people of the town. As he walked through the town he waved and talked to some people. Others he avoided. He eventually found his way to the orphanage.
“Ah the great symbol of my first home. Wonder if anyone will ever try to steal you then I might not know this is the place but then again maybe I would.”
He walked into the orphanage and walked straight to where he used to practice his archery. He noticed a few trying their hand at it. They weren’t good yet but maybe they would one day. He offered tips to some and correct some of the things they were doing wrong and even shot a few arrows himself. Then he sent one of the children to find Ormander for him and find out where they were to meet. He then went back to shooting a few more arrows. He had learned long ago not to disturb Ormander when he was doing business. He still remembered the punishments he got for it in the past.
He was standing there telling stories of his adventures to the children when the child returned with a letter from Ormander telling him to get to the office now before he corrupted the children and that was putting it in better terms then it was. So he headed to the office it kind of brought back memories he had walked to the office so many times in the past. He arrived at the office only to see there were other people in it. So he decided to wait quietly outside of the office and listen like he used to when he heard the dreaded words.
“Athur get your butt in here now I know you are out there you weren’t very silent in your approach and you have always had a habit of doing the same mistakes you have made in the past when trying to listen at my office and I saw you. It didn’t help that you sent a child ahead of you.”
“Alright but I swear I didn’t do it this time. If it was bad enough you had to call me here after all these years for something you just found out I did you are getting slow in your old age.”
The road between the Standing Stones and Drefast, while busy with the hustle and bustle of troop movements and trade caravans, had been mostly uneventful. The villages of Vala’Lai and Dracfair were times of refreshing for the wandering pair of Pio and Alcee. It had been interrupted only once when they had come upon a cidal trader beset by brigands. But even then, one glare from Pio and one snort from Alcee set the thugs running.
Pio had received word yesterday, while in Dracfair, that his “father”, Ormander, was in need of aid. And while Pio has often helped Ormander since leaving the orphanage, it was rare that the old man actually came looking for aid… and the word worried the knight.
Upon arriving at the city gates, Pio produced his citizenship papers for the guards. When all was in order, the knight and his companion made their way down to the dark alleys of Drefast, the poor district where the orphanage was located.
As usual, Pio had the mixed feeling of “being home” and “being out of place” at the same time. He knew the people here, had grown up amongst them, knew their stories. But for some reason, Pio had been able to catapult himself out of the poverty that still hung like a shadow in this place.
Pio noticed a group of boys hanging sullenly in a dark side alley and remembered when he used to hide in those same shadows. Alcee snorted under the weight of the unseen eyes. “Easy lass,” soothed the knight. “They are still getting use to the sight of such a glorious creature.”
Arriving at the orphanage, Pio stabled Alcee for the time being and headed in to find Ormander. He recognized some of children as he enter, “Good day, Benito!” The wiry boy’s eyes lit up as Pio continued, “You have grown into quite the young lad. How is your sword arm coming along?”
“Very good, Pio!” Benito said with a sly grin. “Very soon I shall best you!”
“Ah!” smiled the knight as he removed his helm and placed it on the boy’s head. “I see! Well, if your skill can match your bravery, sir Benito, I would guess you to be right! Perhaps we will put it to the test later, hmmm?”
Pio turned his attention to the brunette lass nearby. “And Celeste! My! My! How can it be that you are still here?”
Celeste gave the knight a confused look. “What do you mean, Pio?”
Removing his gauntlets, Pio kneeled before the girl and took her hand in his and kissed it. “I mean I am surprise a fine young suitor has not come and taken you away, my dear princess.” Celeste blushed at the attention.
Standing again, Pio looked around the place, “We shall have to talk to our father about hosting some fancy parties here to so that fine young noblemen of Drefast might find this hidden diamond.”
Celeste replied gently but firmly, “I am not interested in nobles, Pio.”
It was Pio who gave the girl and confused look now. “Why not, fair maiden?”
Celeste continued, “For the noblemen of Drefast have diamonds aplenty, and I would end up as only one among many, hoarded and forgotten.” She paused for a moment, as if think of what to say next. “I should much prefer a simpler man who would treasure me, take me out often to look upon me, captured by the beauty of this gemstone.”
Pio, stunned by the girl’s words, took a moment to gather his own. “Well, fair maiden, you have captured my attention. Your heart is noble, and you speak with wisdom. You are indeed a princess.” He kissed the girl on the forehead.
Changing the topic as he gathered up his gauntlets and helm, “Now, my dear wise sage, perhaps you could tell me where our father is at.”
Celeste smiled. “His office. Serving tea to guests as usual. Some of the others have already arrived.”
Others have already arrived… what kind of trouble are you in, father?
Looking towards the office, Pio spoke over his shoulder to Benito, “Watch over Alcee, lad. But don’t get to close… she could best us both.”
Pio was walking down the hallway when he heard Ormander’s voice calling for Athur to stop his skulking and come into the office.
“Alright,” Athur replied. “But I swear I didn’t do it this time! If it was bad enough you had to call me here after all these years for something you just found out I did, you are getting slow in your old age.”
Pio smiled as he rounded the corner and, sure enough, saw the vaguely familiar form of Athur enter into father’s office, now all grown up. But still getting into trouble.
The familiar sound of a khord assaulted his ears next. “As much as this get together is nice, I’m dying to know what it is you have called us her for, Ormander.”
Sure enough, as Pio entered into the office there was Kastor the Khord, Athur, and…
Pio was stunned. The young lass that he had once teased playfully over a decade ago had grown into a stunning woman during her time away. Her loveliness took his breath away for a moment.
Coming to his senses, Pio clapped the khord on the back, “Kastor, my friend! Still got the patience of a khord, I see. Must actually be in the blood, hmmm? We all know Ormander doesn’t talk business until everyone’s belly is warmed up by at least two cups of tea.”
“And, Kastor!” Pio set down his helm and gauntlets. “Why do you introduce yourself to Athur like you have never met. I know the lad was just a child when you left for your crusades in the Chakrans, but Ormander’s been chasing Athur around since the boy could walk.”
Turning to Athur, the knight clasped the younger man’s hand. “How have you been, friend? I have not heard much of you since you left for the east many moons ago.”
[OOC: Tag Drakar]
Pio then turned his attention to the young woman, taking her hand gently in his, “And Percifeer. Well! You are looking very well. How is it that your husband has let you so far from his sights? I should think a man in possession of such a great treasure would want to keep it close at all times... so as not to lose it.”
[OOC: Tag Suicidolt]
Finally, Pio embraced Ormander. “I came as soon as I received word, father. Your health is well, I trust.”
[OOC: Tag DM]
[Double-OOC: Whew! Sorry about the novel!]
Posted on 2007-12-08 at 17:29:34.
Edited on 2007-12-08 at 17:39:13 by Ayrn
Percifeer squeezed Ormander possibly a bit too hard, but as she released him she heard the other person speaking. She had missed the first part in her shrieks of joy, but caught these words.
"he still hasnt told me what all this is about but i hope its good i guess us two and some others are working together to help my old friend ormander"
She was turning when Ormander shouted out the doorway. She heard a very familiar voice reply. The boy whom she had spent quite a lot of time playing silly games with during her time in the orphanage.
“Alright,” it was definitely Arthur! “But I swear I didn’t do it this time! If it was bad enough you had to call me here after all these years for something you just found out I did, you are getting slow in your old age.”
Sure enough, he stepped into the door covered in studded leather and quivers. She grinned and waved from across the room. It wasn't the customary actions of a lady that stopped her from hugging him, but the pointy arrows sticking out every-which-way.
Closely behind him, as she grabbed a cup of tea, followed someone else. He was a bit larger than her, but small by most standards of fighters. She only thought of this because he was wearing full-plate, something she rarely saw, especially not on men of his size. She noticed, however, as he entered the room he was eyeing her...but those eyes. Pio?
He spoke, eliminating her doubt clapping the other adventurer on the back, “Kastor, my friend! Still got the patience of a khord, I see. Must actually be in the blood, hmmm? We all know Ormander doesn’t talk business until everyone’s belly is warmed up by at least two cups of tea.” She hadn't realized it until he said it, but the man in the chair was a bit short. It seems he was a khord, which would explain the gruff voice and apparent lack of patience.
In any case, the man showed himself to have the charisma of a leader in his introductions, despite the appearance of a warrior. This was, to Percifeer, not unlike Pio, but certainly a rare change to the wizards she met who, if they had charisma at all, were daintily feminine in that nature. She was rather struck with his smile, and she realized she had missed him, an emotion she was not used to. She sipped her tea quietly until he approached her, and she found herself getting goosebumps when he grabbed her hand. Certainly this was a strange eye he was giving her. He had been her authority figure, never looking at her like this.
“And Percifeer. Well! You are looking very well. How is it that your husband has let you so far from his sights? I should think a man in possession of such a great treasure would want to keep it close at all times... so as not to lose it.”
Percifeer was not surprised by the line, but more that it had come from him. She did not argue with the kiss she expected him to plant on his hand, but waited until his mouth was tied up with it to speak, making a pointed effort to smile mischievously as he would remember from years ago. "I do not do husbands. They tie a girl down and leave her little freedom to come and go as she pleases." She waited until he had released her hand to continue, her smile widening as she spoke, "I left the man I love locked in a tower where I could keep him under my thumb and go where I want, when I want."
It probably was not wise to say something like that in front of someone who closely resembled authority, but she was among friends here, and thought it might be worth any nasty lectures on a woman's place if she could just see his lustful eyes widen with shock.
The Orphanage’s owner looked pleasantly surprised as Kastor walked into his residence.
“Kastor my child! Welcome, Khordaldrum explorer, I should say. You haven’t changed a bit. What a great surprise it is, to see you being the first one to heed my calling! Follow me, I’ll get you some tea.”
In Ormander’s office, the now old man started gathering cups for hot water when a young woman’s voice rang heartily through the room. The patron had just enough time to turn on his feet before Percifeer was around his neck. He laughed a deep rumble and patted the girl’s back.
When both Kastor and Percifeer were seated, Ormander returned stirring herbs through a big cauldron with water. A young boy came in and tugged the old man’s tunic. Without taking his gaze off the cauldron he called out beyond the doorway:
“Athur get your butt in here now, I know you are out there! You weren’t very silent in your approach, and you have always had a habit of doing the same mistakes you have made in the past when trying to listen at my office … and I saw you. It didn’t help that you sent a child ahead of you.”
He patted the young boy’s head and winked at him. Then he filled three cups with herbal tea-water, and handed them to the seated ex-orphans. They were sipping the heat when Kastor piped out his question for the third time. Still, he would not get an answer, for a fourth visitor announced his presence.
“I came as soon as I received word, father. Your health is well, I trust.”
“My health is fine, Pio. I’m getting old, but I could still best many other warriors of my age.”
He laughed, and bade the knight to sit down.
“I’m expecting a few more of your fellow orphans.” His face slanted in seriousness. “Once they arrive, I will tell you what you are here for.”
As Pio gently lifted Percy’s hand to his lips, the lovely lady spoke, mischief on her face that once again reminded him of days past, “"I do not do husbands. They tie a girl down and leave her little freedom to come and go as she pleases." She waited until he had released her hand to continue, her smile widening as she spoke, "I left the man I love locked in a tower where I could keep him under my thumb and go where I want, when I want."
Pio returned the smile, “I see your tongue is not quite as sweet as your skin.” He gave her a grin. “Still, you speak truth, yes? I am reminded of the proverb that such loveliness as you have attained is too great a treasure for any one man to possess. It should surely be shared among many.” He gave her a wink, and kissed her hand once more. “For that… I thank the gods.”
Pio turned his attention to Ormander. “I came as soon as I received word, father. Your health is well, I trust.”
“My health is fine, Pio. I’m getting old, but I could still best many other warriors of my age.”
The old man laughed, and Pio with him. Accepting the tea, the knight sat but continued the easy conversation. “Best be careful… young Benito seems to think he could best many a knight.”
He paused briefly before commenting, “The children all seem to be doing well.”
Ormander seemed glad for a diversion from his worries.
"Yes, they are doing well, though I'm sure they would do better if they heard some of the adventures you guys have been through."
He glanced at all of them and smiled. This was a familiar feeling to the old man: being in this office with children that had grown. It was not unlike the times that he would tell a group of orphans that soon it was time to leave their childhood behind to find a living of their own. Only this was that situation reversed.
"Do you guys remember Goddfrey Morman? He finally left the orphanage last month, and has now taken over the bakery at ..."
His question started a digging into the shared memories they had. There were many; some embarrassing, some glorious, but they always reminded them of the compassion and familiarity of living in the orphanage.
"So, while we wait for the others, shall I show you around the house? Things have probably changed a bit since you were last here."
"i might just as well walk throught the orphanage and see the new structure as i have been gone a good 17 years but how many are still to come to see you father"
*great a walk i cant wait* kastor thought to himself
as Kastor did walk through the halls he felt as a child again bringing back a stolen item or items. but he had no longing for it anymore he was mature and knew to have more worries than a minor street urchin.
the other orphans looked nice enough and they all looked like they could protect themselves he might just as well get alng with them best he could as he would probably be working with them these next couple of months the knight looked a bit to posh for his liking. But he looked like an able combatant so he would give it a go at getting along with him as Kastor prefers a friend fighting with him from an enemy. the others look liked a nice bunch but the knight would get his most attention if it was desired.
Posted on 2007-12-09 at 18:30:34.
Edited on 2007-12-09 at 19:36:13 by stryke
A lone figure, dusty and tired from two days’ hard riding, walked his weary horse through Drefast’s darkening streets. Standing maybe a finger’s breadth above six feet in height, a full half head beyond most of the thinning crowds going about the last of their daily business, Alexandro cuts an imposing figure, burly and broad-shouldered beneath his well-polished breastplate and steel pauldrons. The horse he leads, a grey gelding of similar proportions, panted heavily beneath its barding but its owner knew their destination was near and he and his mount both would need to wait a while before finding rest.
Finally they neared the old orphanage and, fully aware of the dubious nature of his immediate neighbourhood, the veteran allowed his hand to trail close over the pommel of the wicked-looking blade that hung by his side, jagged-edged and marred with pits of rust that even the most diligent polishing had proved insufficient to shift. Should any of the local ruffians or cut-throats mistake him for an easy mark then they would, no doubt, live to regret the indiscretion but better by far to demonstrate himself ready for a fight and hopefully dodge any unwelcome encounter. Whether such caution was well placed remained unclear, but the pair neared the orphanage building without incident. The ram of Drannon - pure silver, so the story went- shone feebly in the waning light overhead and Alexandro knew he was nearly back. Throwing a silver Jetra, along with his instructions that his horse be brushed down and given water, to one of the youths who let lingered on in the courtyard, Alexandro continued inside. Having heard the news that Ormander might be in some trouble he had come as quickly as he could, he owed the old man that much at least, and having finally reached his destination the soldier saw no reason to further tarry.
Striding briskly through the compound’s main building to Ormander’s office, for he knew the layout as well as any of the orphans whom he passed in the place’s long corridors, Alexandro knocked curtly at the door. It had been hard enough to wrangle even a few days’ leave from his company commander with the rumour of fresh Sendrian movements to the north and, having exhausted both himself and his mount on the sharp journey down he would near what his benefactor might require of him as soon as possible.
OOC: Not my best post ever, but hopefully it should do the job of introducing Alexandro and moving things along.
As things stand, I’m leaving it with Alexandro knocking at the door, should Ormander or anyone else answer it then he can respond from there.
Again, apologies for not updating earlier- I’ve been quite busy over the last couple of days.
Since nobody denied the old man showing his pride of the building he maintained, he got up and nodded.
“Well then, let’s go.”
He placed an arm over Kastor’s shoulder, and took him out of the office like a protective guardian. Looking around if the others followed, Ormander began his tour.
A few additions had been made to the building. New colours of paint were applied to certain rooms, most likely to the flavour of the orphans residing there. Paint had been a luxury most of them had not seen inside the orphanage during their own time there.
There was a new practice area, where children were taught the ways of the sword or the path of the arrow. Upstairs the rooms were still cramped with bunk beds and the chests with personal belongings.
One of these rooms had been cleared and now hosted a silent area for studying or meditation. A very small cabinet with books lined the walls, which were otherwise adorned with big sheets of leather or parchment displaying a mix of arcane marks and fighting disciplines.
The cramped room next to it was still devoted to Falloes, and they could see three children of varying age in deep prayer to the God of ones in need.
In the garden awaited a most stunning surprise. It had been Ormander’s dream for many years to make the garden more than a dry piece of land, but what they saw was more than they had imagined. A green lawn with trimmed hedges stretched before them, and at the end of the garden stood a small shed with a cow, a goat and a few rabbits and chickens.
When they were being lead through the labyrinth of corridors and chambers inside the building, they perceived a knocking. Ormander hastened his pace and rounded a corner. They were back at his office, and in front of the patron’s office stood a man in breastplate armor, road hardened and firmly built.
“Alexandro?” Ormander called out. “Good to see you’ve arrived as well. I was just showing your brothers and sister around the house.”
this place has certainly come on a bit since i was here i especially like the sword and archery areas i wish they were there when i was. "the garden is looking beautiful" said Kastor surprised at his own sensitivity.
as kastor gazed over the beautiful garden he heard ormander say a name he had heard before somewhere. it was alexandro it looked like he had turned into a soldier these days he had obviously been riding hard for a couple of days and was still had dusty mud that clung to his clothes.