Listening carefully to the conversation between Paomallen and Stuart, Dai was relieved that Stuart chose to ignore the quiet belligerence she herself detected in the words of her new companion. After that he offered a "deal of exchange" They would deliver something for Stuart, and then return here with whatever payment that delvery garnered, to exchange that for the information they sought.
While it was highly likely that the delivery-and-return would not be as simple as Stuart made it seem, there was really no indication to the contrary. Paomallen accepted the deal matter-of-factly, pouching the small bag given him by Stuart to deliver to SatyrMarket 53, Dai noted.
As Paomallen turned, he paused. Keeping with the follower-role, she stepped to one side to clear a path for him to leave, never taking her eyes off those at the table. Almost abstractedly, she motioned for Miran and young Ocyari to follow Paomallen before she herself turned to follow them in turn.
At the table, Paomallen stated that he would stay no longer but would tell the others what had transpired when they were out ot this place. Then he strode out, purposfully and without a backward glance. Puzzled at this, Dai looked at the others for a few seconds to geht their reactions before stating, "He has to know that it is not wise to divide the group here and now, but I will follow him out to see if I can keep him in the area until the rest of you accompany us. What he has to tell you may be of interest ..."
She turned and moved for the door, her speed surprising for one so small. She seemed to be in a genuine hurry to catch Paomallen before he got too far away.
Outside, when she catches up to Paomallen, she asks, "Are you going to wait for the others? It is not wise to split up at this point, in this place."
As everyone makes their way back to the table, Ocyari stifles a yawn. Ugh, she was too used to her stupid curfew! She shakes her head, trying to clear it of that misty, thick fog that is sleepiness. She absently bumps into Miran once on the way back to the table, but is fine other than that.
Seeing how it seems people are moving on rather than staying here (which Ocyari couldn't blame them for, with how boring it is here), Ocyari quickly follows.
"Don't forget me!" She says as she follows the other, seemingly hasty, members of the group.
Walking away from the table with the small bag pocketed, Pao thought he detected movement from the bag. Or was it just the bag "settling" into the bottom of his pocket?, he wondered silently. He was curious, but would respect the terms he had recited back to Stuart about "unopened and undisturbed", and so diverted his attention to leaving.
As Pao approached the door to exit the tavern, he glances at the meaty behemoth that served as the doorman to the establishment without a change of expression.
Once outside, he moves to the right of the door approximately 20 feet to find a "clear" section of wall to lean against [approximate distance, will settle for less without a nearby window] There he waits for the others, hand on his mace and scanning the street in both directions with head and eyes in constant motion.
He notices Dai Lung come out not long after himself, herself looking both ways as she exits. When she spots him, she approaches quickly, asking, "Are you going to wait for the others? It is not wise to split up at this point, in this place."
Pao smiled, genuinely touched by her concern for the party. He himself had only joined them earlier this day, and she, Dai, only a few minutes ago. Yet she was as concerned about party unity as if she had been with them from the very beginning of their quest. He wished fervently that he could remember her as she seemed to remember him. Regardless of that, he liked the woman already for what she had shown him; a sudden and intense loyalty to party and cause, and a willingness to take a risk, seemingly without fear.
"No, Dai, that I would not do, nor will I ever do so willingly. It almost came to that earlier today, but Our Lady touched the group, and myself, with wisdom that prevented it. Your own concern is much admired and appreciated, and I thank you for it."
Glancing over Dai's shoulder at movement, he noticed Ocyari also exiting the tavern, and softly groaned. He had supported her acceptance into the group, to a certain extent attempting to "champion" her inclusion. But he had trouble shaking the desire to "keep her under a wing" of protection. Not that she was likely to accept such protection gracefully. She had already demonstrated a "pluckiness", an independence, a willingness to use what skills she had, without hesitation. Pao wondered just what those skills were ...
Pao's gambit seemed to work out very favourably for the orphans, and soon they were journeying out into the night. Miran didn't miss Ocyari's lapse, the same feelings of weariness mirrored in himself. He, however, was more capable of throwing off fatigue than the child. On a few occasions Miran saw Ocyari trying to rub the sleep out of her eyes. Of course, he himself was not immune to exhaustion, particularly with his leap into the river earlier. He stopped himself from fantasizing about his warm bed back home.
Tonight would be a long night, so he finished his drink before going outside. He chose not to speak, electing merely to nod to Pao as he stepped out of the establishment. He turned back to the door, expecting to see Beinsel and Percy emerge at any minute.
He tried to revive his mind with a few mental excersizes, too keep himself awake and attentive. He would remind, if necessary, the others later that they would all need to rest, else kill themselves trying to save Ormander. They should probably seek a comfortable repose after they finished this quest for the 'Virgin' and received the information in reward.
Trading one darkness for another, the group returned to the night. They had come up with a promising lead, and would find out more after they had delivered the strange pouch. But Ocyari was getting really tired. Even though the others were much older than she was, they too felt the straint from walking all day, their short run-in with thugs, and the fight with the water cat. It had been an exceptionally long day, and they all needed to rest. But were they going to put off sleep in order to not waste precious time? Time was not their friend in this situation.
The big door-man let them pass without a word. The back alley was now deserted and silent. Even the last of the muttering from inside the tavern was shut off when the door was closed with an elaborate bang.
Mist had crept its way up the streets. So close to the water, the white fog was a familiar sight, claiming the streets on many a night. But the creepiness that it brought with it now was not common. They realized that they had just entered one of the most dreaded places of Drefast, and come out alive. Why nothing had happened was perhaps hard to understand, for they had been obviously alien to the establishment. Was the tavern not as dreadful as they had feared? Or was there something else they were not aware of?
Whatever the reason, they had a new assignment to complete, and a new companion to help them. Would they do go now, or wait until morning?
(OOC: I'm assuming that you are all leaving the tavern. I didn't get posts from everybody, but figured you might be waiting for me to post something. So, here it is. I need a plan in order to continue.)
Posted on 2008-09-26 at 20:01:40.
Edited on 2008-09-26 at 20:05:09 by Almerin
Ocyari's eyes cloud over as she stares slightly. This was no good! She had to stay awake! Had to...
Ocyari crosses her arms, stifling yet another yawn as she pips up, "Well then, are we going or not? It's boring just standing here you know..."
Although the motion of crossing her arms makes her seem impatient, it is really just a cover for what she is really doing. Her hands subtly and barely move, and Ocyari bites her lip as she feels the two hard pinches she gives herself.
Stupid curfews. Ocyari bitterly thinks, I'd bet if I didn't have one I wouldn't be so sleepy.
Once everyone had joined Pao outside, he told them. "Stuart just gave us another sumbling block on our path. We have a dlivery to make, and are to return to Stuart with whatever is exchanged for that delivery. The where, what, and why will wait until we are away from here and safely out of earshot of whoever might be listening."
He sighs deeply, and continues, "But Stuart only mentioned the delivery, not a specific time. I, for one, am tired. Very obviously, so is young Ocyari. We cannot expect to be efficient, none of us, if we are too weary to think or act quickly. Much as I would like to do this and find out what Stuart has for us in return for it, I feel that we all should rest."
After a short pause: "That is my thought. What do the rest of you say? Ocyari, I know what you'll say. But, try though you might to show differently, you are clearly tired and sleepy. As are we all, I imagine. I will act on the majority's decision."
He looks at the others questioningly as they walk quickly out of the area.
It didn't take very long for the others to exit the tavern after Dai and Ocyari followed Paomallen out. The alleystreet was seemingly deserted at this late hour, but Dai was taking nothing for granted. The lack of visible danger put her somewhat at ease with regard to the young girl's safety, but not totally so. She did not like this area any better than she liked the clientele at the establishment they had just exited, which is to say not at all. The whole area reeked of danger, subtle and otherwise ...
Dai listened to Paomallen and nodded. She was not tired at the moment, but knew she could not be far from fatigue, for it had been a long day for her, as well. But she had a question:
"Rest is the advice I myself would give, if asked, and so I agree with Paomallen. While I have not made arrangements for lodging as yet, I will rest where the rest of you are, or will be, even if that's at the orphanage. We need to speak on this before resting, though, and a quiet room is much to be desired for a secure meeting, however brief. Ocyari? Will you go back to Ormander, or stay with the rest of us?"
"Well, it'd be better if I just stayed with the group, right? That way you don't have to wait for me to come back from the orphanage before going out." Ocyari points out, More like if they let me come back... she adds in thought.
After a little pause, in which Ocyari averts her gaze, she pips up again.
"Umm, can I ask something?" Ocyari asks, her voice hesitant and tentative.
"Are you all saying we should rest because you're tired, or..." Ocyari bites her lip; it probably would sound a bit rude, but well, it was on her mind, and she doubted she would get much sleep if it stayed on her mind.
Finally, she blurts out, "Or are you just saying that to make me feel better about being a hindrance to the group?"
Ocyari bites her lip; what was the point in asking that? They'd never admit it even if it was true. That's just the way grown-ups are... too overprotective of her and her other younger 'siblings'. Well, alright, perhaps some of the others are right to be overprotective of, but surely not her. Ocyari knew even she was protective of some of the other 'siblings'...
"Oh forget it." Ocyari blurts out, her eyes firmly staring at her feet, "Let's just find somewhere to sleep."
Pao smiles at Ocyari's concern, and stops briefly to turn, kneel, and look her in the eyes.
"No, Ocyari, I won't forget it. You ask a valid question, but I can only speak for myself in answer. I have had a long day of travel, then searching for and finding you and the rest of this party, and then traipsing about the city to get what we currently have. I am tired. Genuinely weary and sleepy myself."
"Now, please, understand this, at least from me. You are an equal to any of us here, in my eyes. As such, I will not lie to you to spare your feelings. You will find this out as you learn about me. For now, you have my word. I am tired."
With that, he stands and turns again to continue toward the orphanage and rest.
Posted on 2008-10-02 at 03:00:29.
Edited on 2008-10-02 at 03:01:39 by Utan the Orange
The job assignment for Stuart had to wait until later, for they were all feeling the weight of the late hours. Going into a possibly dangerous test without preparations or proper sharpness of mind would be ignorant.
The way back to the orphanage was a silent one. They walked deserted streets, where even most lights had been doused behind windows long ago. The cool silence of the night was somewhat calming, and gave them time to reflect on their findings. Much had happened this day, but did they find out enough to save the orphanage? They seemed to have a long way to go.
After fifteen minutes of walking they were suddenly stopped by a man, who seemed to be waiting for them in the middle of the road. They were about 10 minutes away from the orphanage, but still on the wider streets with shops on either side.
The man held up a hand, in a command for them to stop. But as their attention was on him, a pale claw came from behind and grabbed Ocyari. She struggled to get loose from its strong grip, when the soft soothing voice from her assailant whispered: “Don’t struggle, princess. Let me get a closer look on that neck of yours.”
The others in the group now saw the young thief, in the grip of a pale man, with long fangs sticking from his open mouth, and hands with nails like a beast. He held her in front of him, and had his red eyes on her neck.
The man who had been standing in the street ahead of them was now slowly approaching. In the moonlight, they could see that he also had protruding fangs and a deathly pale skin. There was no doubt they were dealing with vampires here.
Posted on 2008-10-05 at 10:32:40.
Edited on 2008-10-05 at 14:53:04 by Almerin
It felt familiar, the way the person had grabbed Ocyari's shoulder. Kind of like the other times when Ocyari was barely caught snatching a cookie, and there's always someone to try to grab her from behind. Heh, they didn't know who they were dealing with. Still, at least the action made Ocyari feel wide awake now, alert and ready as a bit of adrenaline flows through her body.
"Princess?" Ocyari scoffs, "Yeah right, of what kingdom?"
Ocyari is smart enough to know she won't break the grip with strength, especially considering her relatively small stature, but that doesn't mean she didn't know what to do. Ocyari seems to run forward, and she grabs underneath the offending arm for a bit more leverage. Of course, with the hand this causes her to begin to flip, which is exactly what she intended. She brings one leg in as she does so, the other held outward to likely kick the man in either the head or shoulder. At the impact, Ocyari lets go of the arm, and kicks out with the other leg, catching the man in the chest. If the impulse knocks her out of the hand's grip, she holds out her arms to cushion her fall as she lets herself roll forward into a dive-roll, immediately ending the roll with a leap to a standing position. She steps quickly, trying to put as much distance between the two as possible, all the while bringing her bow out, ready to use.
((Breaking the grapple via escape artist check paired with a move to the centre of the group if possible while drawing her bow ))
Posted on 2008-10-05 at 17:01:33.
Edited on 2008-10-07 at 19:12:19 by Reralae
It had been a long day for Percifeer. Too much emotion exhausts a person. This is often the reason a sorceress must sleep at least as much as the wizard next to her. On top of the spell casting and stupidity, she had seen her brothers and sisters fall today. It was just too much and she only wanted to go home. Tonight, her home was the orphanage.
Naturally, the trip did not go without incident...
“Don’t struggle, princess. Let me get a closer look on that neck of yours.” There was a man who had grabbed Ocyari, with fangs obvious in his mouth.
If they had grabbed another member of the group, Percifeer would have sighed and kept walking. They hadn't. They had made for the child, whom she was determined to protect. She wasn't having it.
She paid no attention to the man that was coming from the other direction. Either she had bigger things to worry about, or she just hadn't noticed him. Still, she started an incantation, looking at the space just behind the man's head.
"Do you like birds, boys?" ((Summon Monster II - Celestial Eagle behind the vampire's head))
Even as Pao heard Percifeer speak toward someone to the rear of the party, he was focused on the fanged threat to the front. No hesitation, no time to warn. He gripped the silver holy symbol at his heck with his left hand and raised his right hand, palm out, toward the approaching vampire.
"Our Lady of Souls, smite this fang-toothed abomination with the sound of your wrath! "
[[ Casting Sound Burst as standard action, centered just behind the vampire in front of the party. I'm aware that he may be close enough for the 10' radius AoE to affect some party member(s), but will take the risk. It's the only offensive spell he currently has. The intent is to stun but, failing thath, to distract and weaken it's ability to resist the Turn upcoming ...]]
[[ After the Sound Burst, he'll try to Turn the bugger. If that fails, he'll ready a prayer for Divine Favor.]]
Posted on 2008-10-08 at 02:44:12.
Edited on 2008-10-08 at 12:19:46 by Utan the Orange
When the idea fell home that Ocyari, merely a child, had been allowed to be put in direct danger, Miran drew his steel quickly. On the bridge earlier that day, he was considering when would be the ideal time to use one of his only offensive magical spells. He found now that he had used his magic ideally, conserving his war magic for a desperate battle.
Miran edged closer to the vampire (5ft step) to the undead monster who though to hold the young girl captive. Driving the fear of what would be if they failed, he spoke the incantation that summoned forth a pair of glimmering bolts of magical energy. With a flick he threw them unerringly into the body of the vampire, knowing they would strike with perfect accuracy and would not harm Ocyari.
His protective shield of magic was long gone, and even if he could invoke another, there was no time for precautions now. He would run into battle with the vampire long enough to help Ocyari out of her situation.
(If Ocyari fails to escape on her own, I may be forced to do something drastic. If she does, I will fight defensively against the vampire to take attention away from her to let her escape. Should she manage to flee, I think we should all just get going the heck outta there)