Expanse: The City Reboot (Dark Fantasy Epic) Main Thread (Open, Started)

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"It had been a long day; I'll continue reporting as the results come." Mari left to find her husband and the rooms."
The Vessel stood up finally. She approached Vergil "So how did you find that?" before turning towards the Dean. She considered which of the thousands of questions it would be best to ask,
Champions? The ****? In the end a lot of them came out as a bit blurted. Hopefully he would understand what she meant with the need for too much repetition.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Vergil watched as he saw Mari leave the room. He then turned to face the Dean.

"Thank you for your generosity, Dean Jastis." Vergil said, bowing afterwards in respect. He then turned to answer the Vessel's question.

"It was.. interesting to say the least. The potential for this kind of enhancement would be greatly beneficial, however, one must consider the possibilities of failure. Judging from what I heard in your mother's report, there is the possibility of there being an imbalance between her body and the water, which could lead to its rejection, this in turn could have a vastly negative impact on her other body systems."

"Perhaps, with small doses, the possible side effects could be negligible. Anyway, we must get some rest, it has been a long day has it not Vessel." Vergil remarked, changing the subject.

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"Shall we find a room then?"
She had to agree and essentially didn't care what the dean had to say about all the questions.
The sleep on the carriage was hardly rest.
She needed, well she needed to let the world look after it's self for a while. She needed to lay down in the dark and wake up whenever she was ready. She needed to clear the face of the Oncoming storm from behind her eyes, she needed to go back to pretending she'd seen the **** for the last time again.
"I need a drink
think they'll do hot chocolate anywhere around here?"

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Quite possibly Vessel. I'm sure if you asked the Dean nicely enough, he could have one delivered to our room." Vergil remarked rather cheekily.

Lady Fiora De La Croix - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Fiora had spent over an hour reading her book, and thought she should have a bath to freshen herself up a bit. After getting off her bed and returning the book to its place on the shelf, she proceeded to the bathroom.

Whilst she let the bath run for a moment, so it could heat up, she cast off the gown, revealing a scar on her chest, a reminder of the past.

It was years ago, the weather that day was rain. Fiora, had just seen her husband, Angello, be killed by the Champions of The Tempest, specifically their leader, known as the Oncoming Storm. The reason for his death, was that information concerning a recent defeat by an unknown enemy, had become public knowledge. They knew that only the Network could possibly gain this sensitive piece of information. Why kill the top agent of the Network? Simple, it would deal the most damage to its leader, Fiora.

She tried to kill their leader in revenge, but, despite her mastery over Dark Magic, there were too many of them to deal with. A soldier wielding a longsword, had managed to strike her on the chest. She played dead, and strangely, they left her be. Fiora had managed to get the lifeless body of Angello to some place safe, so she too could rest and heal her wounds.

Within a day or two, she had his body buried.

After Fiora remembered her husbands death, she turned to notice that the bath was ready. She climbed in, letting the hot water cover herself up to her shoulders.

"I can just feel the pain melt away." Fiora thought as she sat back, and relaxed.

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"Oh I don't need that I'll just go to one of the kitchens."
A drink or two (or several) later. In their room
Vergil had come with her but not drank much, she felt a little guilty about having so much when he didn't then again that really didn't make sense.
The room was warm, a fresh fire had been lit the room was mostly dark but bathed in an almost unearthly light. Her clothes were in a corner on the floor, old habits die hard and in the back of her head she still knew exactly where the maid spot was.
The Vessel was by a standing mirror, preforming a test to two.
"I'm pretty sure your right; I've been thinking it over and yes I can't see any other options."
She looked over at him.
"You don't need to look away; I won't begrudge your enjoyment after all I'm enjoying it."

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

After hearing the Vessel dismiss the offer, Vergil followed her out of the Dean's chambers, and towards the kitchen. They'd spent a little while in their having a few drinks, after which they proceeded to their room, which one of the maids pointed too on the way out.

Being the gentlemen that he was, Vergil let Vessel enter the room first. It was a fairly large room, but not large enough to be called excessive, at least for the amount of people that would be staying here the night. A fire had been lit not a moment ago. Vergil proceeded to take off his coat, and hang it over one of the tall armchairs, then proceeded to sit in it, his shadow being cast along the back wall.

Out of the corner of his eye, pretending that his gaze was elsewhere, Vergil could see that the Vessel was naked, her clothes cast aside to a corner of the room; and performing, what he'd presume to be tests, on herself as she stood next to a mirror.

She then looked over to him.

"You don't need to look away; I won't begrduge your enjoyment, after all, I'm enjoying it." She said to him. He gave a relaxed smile in return, and then responded.

"Oh, I'm not looking away Vessel, in fact, I'm enjoying everything I see from this perspective." Vergil remarked, giggling afterwards.

"Anyway, what are you doing to yourself?" He then asked, slightly confused at what she was doing.

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"Seeing if I find women attractive, I figured I was the best to use myself as a test subject, more freedom to do things like this."
I won't even try to explain what that was (not sure I could even when I wanted).
"Not to mention, less impolite anyway after that I think I'm good for now."
She looks towards the bed
So comfortable.
She got onto it and under the covers, she wouldn't be awake much longer, her eyelids were way too heavy to stay away more than a few more minutes.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Fair enough, after all, the results are for your benefit, so it makes sense." Vergil remarked as he watched the Vessel climb into the bed. His mind was racing at the opportunity that was presented to him.

Meanwhile, in Vergil's mind...

"Should I or shouldn't eye?" He thought to himself.
"Go on Vergil, how many times are you going to get the chance." A malevolent voice responded to his question.
"No Vergil, don't. Remember, you said you were going to remain friends with her. This is going too far." A reserved and older voice called out.
"Screw off old timer. Both you and the boss know that this could be that the only time that the he can do this. Go on boss, do it."
"No, don't listen to him sir, there are other ways that you can do this, all they take is time. Please, listen to me." The older voice begged.
"Ignore him boss, he's only tryi..."
"Quiet!" Vergil shouted, bringing order to the conversation. "Both of you are making this difficult, leave me at peace, I did not ask for advice from either of you, so back off." He then shouted to the two aspects of his morality, which scared them somewhat; as his he drawed his fist closer in the real world.
"Sorry sir, just trying to keep you on the noble path." The old voice replied to the outburst, sounding apologetic.
"Yeah, sorry boss, didn't mean to make you so jumpy." The malevolent voice responded, sounding scared.
"Glad we could reach a consesus, return to whatever corners of my mind from which you came from, and leave me be." Vergil ordered, banishing them from his mind, without a reply from either.

Back in the real world

After dealing with the good and bad of his mind, Vergil got up out of the chair, standing still, and noticing that the Vessel was still partially awake.

"Care for some company in there?" Vergil asked with a smile.

Telnor- Dean's Mansion- Tinsdal

Telnor wandered around the mansion, just bored, looking for the rest of the group. It had been a long and eventfully past two weeks. After a long time searching, and a few not really memorable run in with over zealous guards, who left him alone after he explained that he was a guest of Dean's. Despite this he could always see at least one guard following all the time. Eventually Telnor got tired and asked a servant to show him to the guest rooms. As he was rounding the corner he spotted two people standing in the hall talking. Regonizing them he called,

"Hello, Mr and Mrs. Vessel's Parents."

"Well I wasn't going to make you sleep on the floor was I?
Come on in."
She lifted the covers, showing him a way in (I probably don't even need to finish the joke).
The halls Mr and Mrs Vessel's parents
"Bit of a strange way to put it isn't it?" That probably wasn't supposed to be out loud but the Vessel's father wasn't the best at keeping internal and external monologues apart.
"But regardless nice to meet you..."
"Telnor Darling."
"Right Telnor. Sorry thinking of something else."
"When aren't you?
Now anyway nice meeting you again Telnor how was your passage up here?"

Telnor- Dean's Mansion- Tinsdal

"It was a boring, uneventful trip up here. Just a couple of bandit attacks here and there. Though I guess navigating the pass, blind was an interesting experience but that only lasted about a day," Telnor replied cheerily.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Well then, best I make ourselves comfortable." Vergil remarked as he walked over to the door, grabbing the key from the bedside table. He then went over to the door, and locked it. After this, he turned to the Vessel.

"Don't want to be disturbed now do we."

As he got closer to the bed, Vergil took off the waistcoat and shirt, tossing them to the floor. Then, he removed his boots, tossing them away as well. He then entered the bed, under the inviting and seductive gaze of the Vessel. Before he went to sleep, he kissed Vessel on the forehead.

"Good Night."

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Vincent - District's Heart - Dojeran

"I'm ready when you are. Let's find some shelter from this weather." Vincent said with a smirk, motioning for Lucian to lead the way.

Now that Vincent was thinking about it though, he didn't really know his companion all that well. He knew that Lucian was a good fighter, and a damned skillful tactician, but aside from that he knew very little.

Maybe it's time I find out who Lucian really is and what he did prior to being a Hunter. Vincent thought, throwing a sideways glance at Lucian as he trekked through the snow.

imageLorel Ion - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Lorel found out that Velen and Itsuka had gone out to eat, and considering they had history, decided to leave them. He saw Malina who was standing next to an older man, when he realized it was her father. "Oi, Malina!" Lorel called out.

"Lorel!" She exclaimed, and her father looked over at him.

"You're alive." He spoke, "So it's true what my daughter told me."

"Yes."

"But why? I am still in the dark on this whole escapade. We have gotten very little details."
Lorel began to explain what had happened in Upper District with his family and it took Noyis a bit to take in. "I don't understand why your family would do such a thing. More so when you and my daughter were to be wedded."

The wedded part made Malina blush. "Lord Ana'sha, you must understand. Upper District is corrupt. Middle District is dying once more. The once saving grace of the Section has now become a thorn in its side and it's digging deep."

"Well that complicates things between us."

"How so?" Lorel asked.

"You see, I received a letter from my wife just a day ago. She is up for considering of being the next Noble. To replace your family's spot."

"But father!" Malina said. "How can we become the next Nobles? Even you were disgusted with what Middle has become. Are you saying we should truly join them?"

"Malina, you know your mother. I love her but she makes all the decisions and I can't truly go against her. I can only suggest. And she has wanted to become a Noble for a long time
coming."

"But..." She said looking down.

"I know. We can't just rebel against our own of kin."

"Because they're also Vampires?" Lorel spoke knowing that there was no one around to hear and he didn't speak loudly.

Noyis's eyes widened and then he looked at his daughter. "You told him?"

"Yes... I mean it's Lorel, he wouldn't go telling."

"I suppose so. But yes you're right Lorel, because they're like us, Vampires. There is so few of us still alive, we can't afford to start killing each other."

"I understand, and I don't want you to put you in any position to do that. But please, try to convince your Wife to hold off joining. I don't want to have to fight your family. You probably can see it, war is soon to break out and I can't kill friends, aside from one."

"Amelia?"

Lorel simply nodded his head.

"Lorel, I don't wish to harm you either, you're the last of your line. To kill such a line that has existed for so many years... But I plead you; stay in the North, this war isn't yours. Let us handle this."

Lorel stepped back. "No, after Amelia ordered my family's death and my banishment. She involved me in this. It's my war now." With that Lorel left Malina and her father alone.

"A few bandit attacks!"

"I'm sure out daughter can handle herself."

"I'm sure she can but still, I take it Andria was ok? No problems you and her are still friends I take it?"
In bed with you know who
The Vessel didn't mind the kiss, she trusted Vergil enough to know it wasn't a sign of anything sexual.
She got closer appreciating the warmth. So what if she was slightly uncomfortable, it was pretty flattering if nothing else.

Lady Fiora De La Croix - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

It had been at least half an hour since Fiora had gotten into the bath, during that time, she had simply let her cares and worries, float away. But, the water had gotten colder, so Fiora thought it best to finish now.

Within a few moments, she got herself dried and dressed in some evening wear. Afterwards, she left her room, and wandered down the hallway, en route to the kitchen. As Fiora walked, she could her voices coming from one of the rooms, a man and a woman to be precise, but she couldn't make out who it was specifically. The overall mood of the conversation seemed to be relaxed.

She decided to avoid the people that remained in the hallway, and go straight to the kitchen, to pick up something to eat before she went to bed, as it the day turned into the early hours of the evening.

After spending around quarter of an hour in the kitchen, she hurried back to her room on a full stomach. Fiora changed into some nightwear, got into her bed, and went to sleep.

image Kalyn Alexander Vaalender - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Scarlett slipped away from the group at the first opportunity and returned to see her father. He looked annoyed at her arrival back in his chambers but with a resigned sigh and a bottle of wine he decided to answer her further questions. Kalyn poured himself a generous measure and offered Scarlett a glass, against her better instincts she accepted and sat down opposite him on a comfortable, red velvet couch.

"Well what are you waiting for?" Kalyn smiled sipping his wine.

"Why did you take my mother to see a man who specialised in the study of abilities?"

"Ah. Well. I was working for the Red Stain at the time. You see I have a certain 'itch' that must be scratched, so to speak, and in return for a discreet service to fulfil this 'itch' I help the Red Stain when they call. A little too often mind but I can hardly refuse them."

Scarlett looked a little repulsed. "The Red Stain used my mother to keep you in their debt?"

Kalyn's smile tightened and he sat forward putting down his glass on the table between him and Scarlett. "I won't lie to you Joanna."

"Scarlett."

"Excuse me?"

"Scarlett. My name is Scarlett."

"You mother called you Joanna." In the brief moments she lived before I had her killed, mused Kalyn.

"I didn't know my mother. Sera gave me my name."

"Ah yes. And how is old Sera?"

"Dead." Scarlett remarked coldly.

"Really?" Kalyn sat back with a look of disappointment. "Shame. Anyway as I was saying. I won't lie to you... Scarlett... your mother was provided to me on the agreement that I aid the Red Stain in their work. Nothing like the sort you do of course. More academic, pressuring people or finance. That sort of thing. One such job was the study of abilities with the intention of determining a method to neutralise their use in an individual."

"So, the Red Stain was looking to counter abilities then?" Scarlett interrupted thinking back.

"Yes. Of course it was no accident that your mother had an ability. The Red Stain knew and hoped to take advantage of it. When it began to fade you mother. Isabella. Approached me with the intention of joining my study to find out why her ability was fading. The rest you know."

"Where you successful in defeating abilities?"

"Of course."

"How?"

Kalyn grinned and took a sip of wine.

"You have your secrets. I have mine."

Scarlett drained her wine glass and watched as her father poured more into it.

"What about the girl, Tear?" Scarlett remarked.

"Not much to say really, she was born many years later. The study had long since finished. After her fathers death she simply vanished."

"Did you know Sera had taken her as an apprentice?"

Kalyn sat forward with a serious expression. "What? When? Have you seen her?"

"She was responsible for the ballroom deaths at the Nehelem Estate back in the middle district, I believe she was working with Sera to destabilise the district. "

"Well." Kalyn remarked. "This does come a surprise... Anything else?"

"How did my mother die?"

The colour drained from Kalyn's face. This was the big question. "Did... Sera never tell you?"

Telnor- Dean's Mansion- Tinsdap

"Yeah she could take care of herself. Plus there was Vergil and Itsuka and Velen and Scarlett and Lorel and myself to fight as well. Oh and some guy named Hailen. He seemed to be a pretty good water mage. or was it Ice. I forget. So yeah both me and Vessel are good friends though we are no longer in a relationship anymore. It kind of turned into one of those really quick burst relationships that quickly fizzle out," Telnor replied.


"So you were in a relationship? Are you sure?"


"What he means is that we weren't aware you were together, you aren't the sort of person our daughter normally goes for."

imageLady Fiora De La Croix - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Just as Vergil was getting off to sleep, he could feel that the Vessel was moving closer towards him, and one of her arms was laid across his chest, as she rested her head on his shoulder. He smirked briefly.

"Well, you might as well make yourself comfortable Vessel; after all, its just the two of us." Vergil remarked cheekily and in a hush tone, hoping to not attract any attention from outside. He responded by moving his right arm over her shoulders, placing his hand on her chest.

"You don't have to worry Vessel, my hand will not move up there, or down there." He added as his eyes slowly closed, the last thing he saw, was the fire.

Who knows where
Snow all around
Baking snow
Can't quite move,
Held back
Invisible arms
Restrained
No
Constrained
Someone else
Far away
Standing
Looking
Inspecting
Who?
No one else
Oh...
Her
Drawing closer
"Who?"
"Complicated."
"But."
"Very complicated."
Standing
Still inspecting
Her
Peering
Thinking
"Hmmm"
Thinking what?
"Answer!"
"Later, complicated
Now
My questions"
"Won't answer
Unless you do."
"Not a problem.
Can work out."
"How."
"Know you
Well enough."
Silence
Stand off
Unblinking
Blizzard
Getting thicker
Other speaks again
"Thought so
Good bye."
Gone
Blizzard really raging
Burning
Weightless
Footing loose
Floating
Many now
More than countable
Voices
Speaking Simultaneously
Too many questions
Praise indistinguishable from criticism
Questions
Tries to justify
But
Overwhelmed
Focus
Can't
Weak
Doubting
Warmth
Fleeting now

JOLT!

Their Room, who knows when o-clock
It takes a while for the Vessel to remember why she was in a bed with Vergil she was a cold feeling running through her a tingling, like pins and needles, falling awake never sat well with her she could still feel her stomach miss aligned and trying to get back in place.
She'd done her best to get out of Vergil's arms without waking him.
She could barely see anything; the fire had most probably been dead for hours.
The room had a window, looked right on the sky so there was starlight at least, the night was clear so she had a great view.
Looking towards Vergil again she couldn't help but wonder. Speaking under her breath she asked

"Why me? I never chose this." It felt so arbitrary, so out of nowhere.
The feeling wasn't going to go away; he was a good guy and even a great one.
But.
"Why do you have to be a guy?"
Then to the stars.
"Why did you make me this way?
Is it a balance thing?
Then what is this helping?
If you just let me see your motivations I might be more equip to help you.
Is this a test?"

The voices in her head were usually louder, maybe they were just asleep this late at night, or morning which ever it was. She felt alone without their usual chatter, making sure balance was maintained.

She needed to feel it again, in control. She found a sowing kit and needle in one of the draws. Pricking herself a few times, she saw the blood well up in spots and waited for the feeling, the need to re-write the balance it didn't usually take so long. Nearly every other time the voices were so insistent and she felt the energy flow through her nearly instantly, like the blood in her system welling up, almost like an all body blush, it burnt a little but it burnt for a long time only cooling off when she released the energy like a cool cream. But now, nothing, just the delayed pain of the pricks in her arms.
She made the mistake of trying to force it, that this made the blood flow more strongly for a little while.

She fell back onto the bed from her sitting up position.
Vergil was asleep right?
She might as well make something of the night; no way was she getting back to sleep anytime soon.

There was this girl here, she had a lovely smile, the vessel sort of recognised her, someone from the past, she briefly remembered drinks and a few shared words, it was years ago of course the girl probably didn't even remember the Vessel. Maybe if, well if the **** hadn't happened, she'd have been an up and coming musician.

But now, all that was left was a face and a memory.

Then again, alone with the stars and an unwaking friend.
Sometimes a face was enough.

She layback eyes closed.

A few hands later.
"Oh."
She needed that

And with the stars went out and the voice of the city was muted.
ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Maybe this time fewer faces.

imageimageKalyn Alexander Vaalender/Scarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

How did my mother die? The words felt like ice coursing through his veins and Kalyn swallowed the lump lodged at the back of his throat. This was one conversation he wanted to dodge. And badly. Grabbing the cup of wine he took a slow sip and hardened his gaze, from the look on Scarlett's face she registered it and returned an equally hard gaze right into his eyes. She wanted the truth and would not settle for anything else. He could see it in her eyes. Kalyn too a deep breath and returned the glass to the table.

"No." Scarlett broke the silence. "She only told me she died when I was very young."

"Well she would." Kalyn remarked dryly and shifting his position on the couch opposite Scarlett. "Your mother, Isabelle, tried to hide her pregnancy from me. I had no idea but Sera had her suspicions, she seemed to recognise the morning sickness. I'm not sure how. I tried questioning her about it later but she dodged every question with a dismissal."

"You believe Sera had a child?" Scarlett interrupted.

"I do. And from the way she brought you up when you were apprenticed to her I don't doubt it."

Scarlett took a moment to think. Sera had kept that quiet.

Kalyn decided to continue. "Anyway. Isabelle eventually fled the district when her bump became too noticeable, despite already having a daughter, she wanted to keep you too. No offence Joa... Scarlett but I had no intention of keeping you. Another air to my legacy, especially one from a courtesan, would have complicated matters immensely. Not to mention the scandal it would have brought down on me and the Dean. When Sera found her hiding in the Vo'anna mountains a week due we stayed until you were born. After that Sera... killed her."

"Sera killed my mother!" Scarlett looked shocked and a little ill.

"I'm sorry Scarlett. Really. Isabelle was taken out into the snow storm that ravaged the mountains not minutes after you were born and had her throat slit. Her body will probably still be there. I had no control over it otherwise I would have intervened. Believe me."

It was a lie. Kalyn would never admit to giving the order to Scarlett. She would kill him without hesitation.

"I'm sorry." Kalyn took a sip of wine watching Scarlett with a curious gaze. She had gone quiet. A little too quiet.

Without a word Scarlett stood up and left the room, her fists her clenched tightly, Kalyn could feel the anger radiating from as her world appeared to come crashing down around her. Sera and Scarlett might have gone their separate ways over the past few years but there had been a lot of affection still left between the two.

Scarlett went to bed. Well. She returned to her room and lay down staring at the ceiling for hours before pacing up and down thinking. She couldn't switch off. Eventually she could feel the exhaustion creeping up on her and lay back down with her knife drawn on the bed. Closing her eyes.

imageIn a random place, in a unknown time, somewhere within the depths of Vergil's mind...

It was a cold morning in the mountains of the frozen North, the landscape was barren of life, save for two people, a boy and his mother. They had come out to the mountains to explore the land, that had separated the North and Middle Sections, since time immemorial. For the boy, there was adventure to be had, and for the mother, it was to bring happiness to her child. They played amongst the trees and hills of this rocky landscape, finding out more about what had been their home for only a few short years. The day had ended in fun and laughter, a warm friendly smile, had appeared on the mothers face.

The mothers face seemed to be both familiar and alien to the boy, as if he had not seen her in such a long time. She had long grey hair that reached below the shoulders. One of her eyes was red like a ruby, the other, was purple like amethyst. Suddenly, by an unseen force, the boy was lifted up off the ground, and into the inky blackness above. His last sight of her mother, was that she shed a single tear. Then everything went dark.

Back in the realm of reality....

"Mother! Vergil called out in both fear and desperation, his left arm outstretched, to meet an unseen force.
"That was... that was just a dream? But it felt so real. Never mind, I should go back to sleep, force this 'memory' from my mind." He thought to himself, bringing his arm back, and rubbed his head briefly.

Vergil looked over to the Vessel, a symbol of joy for him. She was still asleep, but it seemed that she had moved a little further away from him.
"Perhaps she had her own dream." He thought as he returned to slumber.

imageLorel Ion - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Velen and Itsuka arrived late as the sun began to dip below the horizon and the snow fall began to pick up and lights went on and people went insider their homes. Lorel sat down on a porch with a glass roof and walls, so he could see the snow fall. On the table he was eating some food as he had been too busy to eat.

He saw Velen and Itsuka walk in the room and he greeted them. "Haven't had times to talk." Velen said.

"Yeah, you guys sort of wondered off."

"Sorry about that, we were hungry."

"Uh huh." Lorel said as he crossed his hands.

Velen and Itsuka sat down. "So what happened when you vanished?"

"I fell down a hole into a large elaborate cavern which I had to go through many caves until I came out in Tinsdal. Sort of convent but it I came out in a warehouse." He explained as he eats.

"Interesting." Velen said.

He finished eating. "Do you know that the Ana'sha Father and Daughter are here?"

"They're? Which daughter?" Looking around as if they were nearby.

"Malina."

"Oh..."

Itsuka eyes began to flicker, she was tired. "So why mention them?"

"Apparently the father, Lord Noyis, said that her wife is to become the newest noble."

"What!? Is Lord Noyis happy about this?"

"Indifferent about it. After I told him what happened, he doesn't exactly want her to become one. But he knows he wouldn't be able to stop her. But he is just here for the political party so I doubt he would do anything."

"Be on the guard still," Itsuka said as she stood up. "Well I am going to go to sleep."

"I am going to as well." Velen said.

"As shall I." Lorel spoke.

All of them split up and went to their own rooms and went to asleep.

The Next Day

The sun rose and there wasn't a single snow drop but the ground was completely frozen and piles of snow. Lorel awoke and stretched.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

It was the early hours of the morning when Vergil woke up and yawned. Out of the window, he could that all the snow that had fallen over the last day or so, had vanished. Vergil carefully got out of the bed, moving the Vessel's arm off his chest, it seems she had moved a more closer to him in the hours since he woke up previously.

Vergil decided to stretch a little once he was up, to help alleviate any tense muscles in his arms and legs. We went over to a chair by the fire, and discovered a fresh set of clothes had been prepared for him, lying on top of them was a note.

I arranged for the maids to deliver some cleaner clothes for you and your friend. Enjoy the day, Fiora.

After he put the clean shirt and trousers, and then put his boots back on. He turned to the Vessel, who was still asleep mostly, and twitched a little.

"Good Morning" He remarked, but didn't expect a response.

"You know Vessel, this almost feels like a dream. But then I realise, I had an angel by my side the whole time." Vergil said to himself in a sweet manner. He then chuckled as he realised what he said.

"God, that was corny, but I meant it as well. She really has been an angel." He said with a smile as he held his head in his hand.

"Think I'll go grab us some tea. Won't be too long." Vergil remarked as he unlocked the door, and left the room, re-locking the door behind him, and taking the key.

"Well, a lady must have her privacy, especially in her clothes less state." Vergil said to a empty and quiet hallway. He then headed to the kitchen, quietly whistling a happy tune as he went.

Telnor- Dean's Mansion- Tinsdal

"It was just a couple weeks, mainly consisting of lots of sex. At any rate Its late and I'm tired so I'm heading off to sleepy sleepy land. Take care. See you two in the morning," Telnor said as he left Vessel's parents.

Telnor climbed into the soft, comfortable bed that had been provided for him and feel asleep almost instantly.

The Next Morning

Telnor rolled out of bed, stretched and rubbed his eyes. Yawning loudly he left the room and made his way to the kitchens, running into Vergil. With sleep still in his eyes and voice, Telnor said, "Morn' Vergil"

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Ah, morning Telnor. Trust you had a good nights sleep." Vergil replied back with a yawn.

"I'm just heading to the kitchen, to, um, gets some morning tea for myself and the Vessel." He said nervously, hoping that Telnor didn't catch on.

image

That was all one night?

The rising sun came as a surprise for more reason that she could articulate, it was almost anticlimactic after the night before she thought more would have come of it but no the world had let her down, it had kept going despite the fact she was still torn inside by the need for resolution. Its ambivalence shouldn't have surprised her but it did all the same.

She was soon dressed, as predicted one of the maids had left freshly cleaned robes and with the robes a package and a note.

Sorry we couldn't get this too you earlier, we had to make sure things were ready for the dean. But now that's done, we can give you your birthday present.
It's an old hunting tool not often seen in these parts but its good quality and well see for you.

The vessel looked at the curved wood in front of her, it was clearly well crafted, and they even put her two symbols at each end. She couldn't quite see what all the fuss was about beyond that though.

She opened a window and spotted a pigeon or two out on one of the gargoyles.
She Held it buy one end and gave it a toss, it spun as it flew picking up a lot of speed, the bird it hit was knocked out or worse causing it to fall to the ground below, but the whatever it was didn't stop there, it had bounced off the bird and was coming back this way. Still spinning it narrowly missed the Vessel's head before she caught it again.
So that's what they meant, she had to admit she loved it. But maybe she should practice a bit more.
She wondered if Vergil had ever seen one.

Finishing getting dressed she decided to go and say her thanks nearly all thoughts of last night gone.
She found her parents easily enough showing her gratitude to each of them with a hug they were surprised to say the least.
She didn't stay long, having decided to go down to the to eat in the hopes of finding Vergil. The whatever it was now on her belt.

Once she was down she was greeted by one of the servants,
"A breakfast has already been prepared for you miss Velkan."
The Vessel was pleasantly surprised enough not to mind being called by her family name.
Banana pancakes, yum.
She munched away happily. It really was a good day.

Then the Vessel saw her, behind the bar. A little older than The Vessel remembered but the eyes gave it away. Her long brown hair wasn't as well cared for as it had been either but it really didn't matter.

After eating the Vessel approached.
"Hey."
"Hello miss what can I get you."
"No need to be so formal."
"But I don't know you. So what can I get you to drink?"
The Vessel couldn't answer.
"Well come one you're not the only person I have to serve."
Another woman emerged from behind the bar.
"Problem Love?"
"No just a customer who won't stop looking at me and isn't ordering anything."
The vessel couldn't have got the words out even if she'd had anything worth saying.
The other woman was in her face now.
"Would you mind not looking at my wife? Now order something or stop wasting my time."
The Vessel didn't need to be told again, she left without another word.

So much for that good feeling she'd had.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Vergil and Telnor soon arrived at the Kitchen, and he watched Telnor head to the counter to get something to eat. Whilst Vergil headed to the opposite end, where the staff were taking orders for hot drinks. A woman with red tinted hair greeted him as he arrived.

"Good morning sir, what can I get for you today?" The maid asked happily.
"Can I have a large pot of tea please, for two people that is."
"Certainly sir, it will take a while though, we have to prepare the stove for the water. Hope this isn't an inconvenience."
"Not at all."
"Thank you sir, whilst you wait, would you care for something to eat?"
"Hmm, I fancy... an omelet; with some ham and cheese inside, if that is not too much a problem."
"Very good sir, is there anything else?"
"A side of pancakes, and an glass of orange juice. Sorry, its been a long journey, haven't eaten well in a while."
"Of course sir, this shouldn't take too long. I'll have someone else prepare the tea alongside this. Would you like milk and sugar with the tea?"
"Yes please, just in case she fancies some."
"She? Who would you be talking about?" The maid asked inquisitively as she noted down Vergil's order.
"A Miss Velkan, but she prefers to be called The Vessel." Vergil replied with.
"Ah yes, I know who you talk about. I overheard one of the other maids saying that a breakfast of banana pancakes had been ordered for her. Anyway, I'll go process this order for you now sir." The maid remarked, and disappeared into the back area of the kitchen.

"Of course, the **** had given her a banana muffin back in Mo." Vergil thought to himself, as he remembered his first encounter with the ****.

It was roughly a quarter of an hour later, when the maid had returned with Vergil's meal.

"Here you are sir. Your tea should be ready in about ten to fifteen minutes. Sorry for the delay, its just with the masquerade going on tonight, some of the kitchen equipment has been pre-occupied." The maid responded, sounding apologetic.
"That is quite alright, gives me more time to enjoy this rather fine breakfast." Vergil remarked as he was handed over the tray with the omelet and pancakes on one side. The orange juice and cutlery on the other. He then turned and headed towards a seemingly empty table.

Vergil then began eating away at the omelet. Its taste sent a pleasing shiver down his body. A little while later (about five minutes or so), Vessel arrived at the table, after a brief confrontation with the staff.

"I take it things didn't go so well." He remarked as he took a sip of orange juice.

imageScarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

It had been Scarlett's intention to wake early, the bright morning sun was beginning to creep up from the horizon and cast it's first rays of light across the district. Scarlett looked out of the open window. Most traces of snowfall had vanished overnight but the ground remained frosted and hard. A chill carried on the wind. As a girl of the north Scarlett hardly felt it. Changing into a spare pair of clothes left neatly folded on a chair beside her bed Scarlett headed out and down to the kitchen.

Ignoring the maids flustering around her Scarlett decided to make her own breakfast, declining any offer of help with a polite reminder that might be better served preparing for the up and coming ball. It was simple meal of cooked ham and eggs. Washed down with a glass of fresh juice and a small pot of tea. She ate in silence watching dawn break across the district through the tall windows of the dinning room. Afterwards she left the washing up to a maid who refused to take no for answer and headed to the library.

It was a grand hall, on two levels, old books where crammed into the ageing shelving and the musty smell of paper perfectly complimented the dust hanging in the air. After some searching Scarlett found the book on ancient Sigil's and settled down in a corner to read. She didn't want any of the group to see her. Scarlett flicked the pages until she caught sight of the raven wings, perfectly drawn on the paper, and began to read.

There was nothing new. She had heard it all before. Immortality. The rule of one. The sign of a fallen angel and the legacy of death. Scarlett snapped the book shut and returned it before heading out. She was a little disappointed there was nothing else. Deciding to get some more tea and think over the problem Scarlett returned to the kitchen where she bumped into Telnor, Vessel and Vergil.

"They didn't exactly..."
The Vessel was relieved to see Scarlett for a few reasons apart from the view she was just so glad to have someone else to talk to and act as a distraction.
"Hey gorgeous, had a nice sleep?"
She produced her birthday present and put it on the table.
"Anyone know exactly what one of these is?"

imageScarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

Scarlett sat down and blushed a little at the comment. Pouring herself a steaming cup of fresh tea she smiled. "Not too bad. You?"

Scarlett's eyes fell onto the object. "A weapon. In the north they are given to small boys, and girls, as a ritual. A kind of right of passage to adult hood. It's what you would say as a child's first weapon."

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Oh, Hello Scarlett. I take it you had a nice nights sleep as well." Vergil greeted her with a smile after finishing his omelet and having another sip of juice.

He looked at the mysterious object that the Vessel produced with some interest, he then put down his knife and fork and gave it a closer inspection.

"You are quite right Scarlett, this weapon can be used to mark a right of passage in hunting communities; and recently as a sports item. Definitely a genuine boomerang, due to the aerodynamic shape, it has the unnatural ability to return to its wielder." Vergil remarked, giving information about the item. He then noticed a tiny fragment of a feather.

"Been using the pigeons outside our room as target practice I see." He added with a chuckle as he pointed out this fact.

It was then that the maid arrived with the tea.

"Your tea sir, oh, you have another guest at the table. Shall I get another cup for you?"
"Uh, yes please, if that's not too much a problem." Vergil replied with as the maid went to fetch another cup, she returned soon after.
"Enjoy your day, sir and madams." The maid finished off with a bow and a smile as she then attended to another person.

Vergil then faced Scarlett and Vessel. "Tea anyone?"

image

"I slept a little off to be honest."
She reinvestigated the boomerang.
"Yes it proved very effective against the birds." She smiled a little at that.
"I've never seen one before, what did you call it? I'm going to have to see what I can do with it, get some practice."
Then to his other offer
"And I'm good not having tea now any offence."
She still though the whole boiled leaves thing was a little off.

imageScarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

"No. Thank you. I have my own." Scarlett passed a smile to Vergil.

She took a sip, it was a little too hot but Scarlett drank it anyway.

"A boomerang." Scarlett interrupted Vergil."I used to have one too, Sera gave it to me as my first weapon, it's a safe way to introduce a child to the existence of weapons given it has no sharp edges. Birds and rats will never be safe again now you have one."

Scarlett smiled remembering her childhood.

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