'Soooo....which should be pretty save considering you think your target may be dead' He stared at the Yama, and suddenly remembered why he hated them so much. "what part of 'several tons of rock soil and swamp water' makes digging down to and getting the head of a seemingly immortal mage sound feasible?" Rias asked sounding very annoyed. Bom also spoke "We didn't have to help you with this problem.....I can't imagine them being much safer behind those walls anyway."
The Yama responded "now the only reason something like that happened is because we let some outsiders in because they found it unreasonable for us to mistrust them....We have no reason to mistrust them." That's it, screw this city. he thought, just able to control himself from shouting at the Yama. "You all made that deal with them....Keeping the team alive is for more important to me then some arbitrary deal you probably forced on them." Rias still seemed angry about the deal. "We can't leave now....Besides, we deserve a reward!" William looked surprised as Rias, he wondered what she was doing.
"Who's 'we'? I'm planning my trek back home, I'm not going to put my self at further risk for them, not worth what ever one sided reward you ended up agreeing on." William was surprised, he knew she was angry but not that angry. "Rias, come now, we aren't here to have a fight.....I suppose I thought more highly of you than the kind of person to leave their friends to die while she goes home nice and safe." Ivaan spoke, leaving him even more surprised. "First of all, Sit, and stay off that leg while you can.....you shouldn't be fighting at all." He looked at Rias, he had never though about how he had offended her with his actions.
William coughed and then spoke. "I am sorry to hear you feel that way Rias. I didn't think about my actions at all... I am very sorry if I offended you that was never my intention, nor was it to say that I don't trust your judgment. I am not going to make up excuses for myself, I screwed up and I am sorry for that. If that makes you decide to go home then that is your choice. But if you stay I promise I will show you more respect....And I know this mission is a bad one, hell I never wanted to accept it. But if we don't do this, if we don't stop the mages, there will be war. A war between all the countries and the wizards, and if that happens there will be no home to return to." He lowered his head.
Ivaan carefully sat down, sighing as he did so and thanking Rias.
Ivaan looked up at Rias and listened while she said her piece.
after a while he nodded.
"Rias, I can give a reason to stay and fight with us. Actually, better that that, I can give you three.
Firstly, we've seen forces at work here that reach way beyond this backwater and the necromancer we just buried. There are forces at work that go far beyond the country that didn't respect you. It stretches out, like a long shadow across our world, and is bringing up the filth and the darkness that we thought were long buried.
And I want to be there when the source of this madness rears its ugly head.
Secondly, you're getting stronger with us. We all felt it back in that cave. When we've fought enough battles, righted enough wrongs, and overcome enough obstacles, we grow in power, not like the shamans from my village in a structured, careful way, but in great bursts that allow us to rise to greater and greater heights.
Please don't misconstrue this as me trying to tempt you with power, I'm merely trying to prove that you have a place with us. If your getting stronger that's a good thing right? And it happens to us all simultaneously, so there must me some form of link between us.
And lastly, this might be a little out of line because I've only been with you lot a month or so, but I'm going to say it anyway. We accept you. and we always will. not because you're a powered being like us, but because you're our friend. And as soppy as that sounds, a stalwart friendship is a hard thing to find in a time like this. I was exiled from my tribe for my own mistakes, which I take full responsibility for. I know that parting from the people you care about feels terrible, especially when you have nowhere else to go. but you and the gang gave me something to believe in. something to work for.
Don't you feel the same way?"
Ivaan leant his crutch against the rock
"Rias, you're completely right. But what do we do? Go home? Back to my bunkhouse and my job on the docks? We are always going to be hated, wherever we go. But this might be our only chance to be appreciated. That imbecile up there might not see it yet, but there will be a time where he and everyone will thank us for what we did. And then reward us for it! Isn't that worth it?"
Ivaan nodded his head at this
"Bom's got a good point too there, Rias. We have a chance to do something magnificent here. To become heroes and champions for all enchanted beings that come after.
If we do this Rias, there won't be a single powered being anywhere that's reviled simply because they have a power. You'll be actively stopping what happened to you happening to anyone else."
Ivaan paused here and took a deep breath, done.
The yama was getting annoyed by the groups conversation 'IMBECILE! You are calling me a fucking imbecile, because I am not taking the words of some complete strangers that they killed one of the most powerful magic users that had ever lived, when if you did it you could do a simple task YOU AGREED TO DO in order to proof it. Everyone in this town has seen family members and friends killed like pigs by family members and friends, who they had far greater reasons to trust. YOU want me to put their lives at risk just to make your life a little more convenient, or that I should trust you because you claim you are here to help you BUT I WOULD NEED A REASON TO TRUST YOU TO BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE HERE TO HELP. Its not like people have lied to about beign law enforcers or doctors or handymen in order to get something they wanted, all claiming to be their to help. so you can either come back here with his head and be treated like the heroes you claim to be or you can FUCK OFF!' He said before another yama threw some shovels over the wall.
Bom smiled and nodded at the comforting words of William and Ivaan. I think we all needed to hear that.
"IMBECILE! You are calling me a fucking imbecile..."
He wasn't supposed to hear that.
"You weren't supposed to hear that..." Bom said in a weak voice, but the Yama continued his tirade unabated. Even Rias doesn't swear this often.
Bom watched the shovels fall, his special senses prickling as they sailed through the air. He caught one, and let the rest clatter to the ground. If he wasn't getting a reward out of this, at least he could keep the hardware. He turned to the others and waited for a group decision to emerge.
Claire picked up a shovel, not really wanting to argue with anyone. There was too much of it going on between Rias and William and the rest of the group to make it worth while. She'd dig the head out by herself if she had too for Claire was many things, but she kept her word. If they wanted the head, it was there's. The cost of such a poor decision was there own problem.
Before she left however, she decided to add her own thoughts to the Rias question. She'd missed most of the words between William and Rias at the tomb between her teleportation and her electrocution, so she had little to add on that matter. Ivaan had expressed the lion share of what she felt by himself, so there was little for her to add. None-the-less, there were still words to be said.
"I don't want to see you go Rias. There are few I would want more by my side, and none outside our current little company. I'm sure you're expecting me to say something like "You have noble blood and you must hold yourself to that standard", but you have never been treated as a noble and have no such obligation; no such duty. All I can say is, I don't want you to go. If, however, you feel you must go, I won't stop you. I do hope you and William can bury the hatchet before you do, such that you can go in peace without any regret. Know, whatever you pick, I will always consider you a friend for all you have done for so many; myself included." she said, leaning on the shovel, waiting for Rias's reply.
Karen was oddly silent through out Rias's 'snapping' and every ones minor speeches to make her stay. She didn't have anything to add anyway. To her if the heart wasn't in the fight then the fight shouldn't be fought, and it sounded to her like Rias had simply lost that heart, that how ever didn't spot her from throwing her her two cents "Leave if you feel you must. If your heart is no longer in the fight then it's only matter of time before it becomes an issue and something bad happens, but, given the state of the group, and what the cowards in the city are asking I am inclined to ask you stay on, at least until Claire and Ivaan are back in fighting shape. After that, if you still feel you need to leave, then leave, I will think no less of you."
Rias looked around the group, kinda surprise Karen said anything, she looked at Ivaan's leg then over to Claire, she couldn't really see the damage, but she knew it was there. Rias thought a few moments. "You all make good points, I'll wait, till after the team is back in fighting condition before deciding what to do." she then turned back to the Yama having totally ignored him earlier "I'm sorry, did you say something?" she said, with a smug grin that said 'I heard you but you weren't worth listening to'
Ivaan heaved himself up, gingerly putting a little weight on his leg as he picked up his crutch.
"All right, lets get going. no use waiting around here." Ivaan looked to will.
"Are we digging up the necromancer or finding somewhere else to stay?"
"Are we digging up the necromancer or finding somewhere else to stay?" Ivaan asked, bringing up the elephant in the room. Claire merely pointed at her shovel, saying "Well, I didn't pick up this rusted piece of metal because it looked pretty. In all honesty though, we needed supplies before we met Abumot in battle. We could leave for the next town, but if we encounter anything or run into any difficulties, we likely won't make it." she said, pointing out the truth. They needed resources, and who knew where the next town was.
"What more, we made a deal with these people, whether we like it or not. I intend to keep my end of it." she finished, explaining her reasoning.
Claire's insistence on getting the job done was good enough for Bom. He was hardly going to let a lady do all the manual work.
"Right then," he said to Claire and the others, "let's get to it."
He looked up at the Yama.
"Back in a bit."
William looked up at the Yama, he really felt like killing him. "You all make good points, I'll wait, till after the team is back in fighting condition before deciding what to do." William was very happy to hear that Rias would be staying with them for a while longer, they really needed all the help they could get right now. Ivaan then asked him "Are we digging up the necromancer or finding somewhere else to stay?" "We are going to dig him up, there is nowhere else to go." He said picking up a shovel. He turned around and headed back towards the tombs, he hoped that Abumoth was really dead.
The group went back to the tomb, the journey was uneventful untill they heard a rummaging noise coming from one of the side rooms, along with angry mumbling '...try and find a new live to life, try and be independent. god I am filled with great ideas, reduced to grave robbing.' The voice stopped for a moment 'Who's there?' it said cautiously.
Bom looked to the others in alarm. Who in their right mind would want to come down here?
Bom gripped the shovel tightly.
"Friends?" he called through. He leaned towards the door and poked his head inside.
bom saw a hansav, looked quite thin his body was black with dark orange stripes, he had his back to a wall holding a knife ready to fight 'I find that very unlikely, I just am here to get... stuff' The hansav was wearing leather armour and was covered in many pouches.
Ivaan's brow furrowed, saying "Grave robbing?" as he walked through the door.
Ivaan looked him up and down. He was certainly in the right get up to be a thief.
Ivaan returned through the door to William, muttering to him.
"There's a grave robber through there. We could try and arrest him for disturbing the tombs of these people, or we could ask for his help for the digging, in exchange for our discretion, perhaps?"
The trip back to the tomb had been uneventful. The ash that swirled around William slowly appeared to grow; he discovered it was because he was breathing out ash for some reason. It was an interesting if not an odd discovery, but as soon as he became aware of it stopped. '...try and find a new live to life....Who's there?' The voice said sounding cautious.
Bom spoke first looking around the corner. "Friends." William recognized the voice the seconds time it spoke, it sounded like an Hansav. 'I find that very unlikely, I just am here to get... stuff' Ivaan then stepped through the door, and then returned whispering to him. "There's a grave robber through there....perhaps?" William nodded, they could use a fresh pair of hands.
William stepped around the corner, his armour shining and the ash around him swirling. He saw that the Hansav was wearing leather armour, and was covered in many pouches. "So you are here to rob this persons grave huh? That is a crime is it not?" He asked sounding very stern.
the hansav raised an eyebrow, if he had one, 'Like the yama care about the dead, even if they did, you can't touch this. Just leave me to my grave robbing and I will leave you to yours' he said pointing at the shovel in bom's hand.
'Like the yama care about the dead, even if they did, you can't touch this. Just leave me to my grave robbing and I will leave you to yours' William looked annoyed. "You have no idea what just happened here do you? There is an ancient lich buried here, with who we just fought. We are here to collect his head now, and there is nothing of value here. Though if you want money... I could offer you a job." William had a dangerous looking smile on his face.
"Not so much grave robbing in our case," Reetch said aloud, squeezing between Bom, William and Ivaan to get a glimpse of the Hansav.
"More like body-snatching, technically illegal all the same. Can't say I'm that attached to the idea, but if stops the locals from treating us like horseshit then I'm willing to give it a try."
The hansav's hypothetical eye brow raised even higher 'I like money, also some of this stuff is made form mahogany, most of it is burned to ash but a couple of planks and I can make some nice miniatures to sell. If you know what your looking for you can find nice things in any pile of rouble. So what do you want me to do and how much money will I get?' The hansav still hadn't lowered his gaurd.
"More like body-snatching, technically illegal all the same. Can't say I'm that attached to the idea, but if stops the locals from treating us like horseshit then I'm willing to give it a try."
'body snatching and lich, well I would like some nice pay for that.'
Ivaan and William seemed to take issue with the hansav's behaviour. Bom, of all people, wasn't about to start pointing fingers at a robber.
"Just leave me to my grave robbing and I will leave you to yours"
It took him a moment to realise what the Hansav was implying.
"If you know what your looking for you can find nice things in any pile of rouble. So what do you want me to do and how much money will I get?"
"Oh, we aren't here to rob"... Weren't we? Bom considered it for a moment. "-say, did you happen to see anyone else down here?"
Rias just stood to the back, stifling a snicker at the situation with the Hansav
Karen just kept walking,"I'm going on a head to see if theres been any movement we need to be wary of" she said and headed down the passage.
Ivaan shot Bom a warning shot "We are not here to desecrate these people's remains. They did nothing to deserve having their final resting places tampered with." Ivaan limped out in a huff, not wanting to have to see the desecration taking place.
Ivaan followed Rias, he couldn't dig but he had regained some of his energy and his conduits weren't feeling as fried as they had before. Ivaan looked at Rias carefully, trying to discern how she was feeling, "If you need some time away, I'm sure William wouldn't object. These are big changes, it's natural for some people to have averse feelings to it." Ivaan reached the collapsed tomb with Rias and sat down on a slab.
"Just so long as you come back to us." Ivaan said, smiling warmly, quite a feat with a muzzle full of canines.
"We are not here to desecrate these people's remains. They did nothing to deserve having their final resting places tampered with."
Bom grinned. This sort of sentimentality for a bunch of dead bodies amused him. As Ivaan limped away, Bom wanted to make a crack about what we were all here for, but Ivaan was already gone before he had thought of a smart way to put it.
He rolled his eyes at the hansav and nodded in Ivaan's direction.
"So, you been a thief long?" he said, trying to be casual. "You seem to be quite new to the job."
Scrawny looking, shabby leather dress, a little dagger; this guy wasn't Bom's idea of a real thief.
The hansav looked offended 'OI, I am not a thief, merely a man in unfortunate circumstances. If you must know I was in a military squad the humans had organised, and my entire squad got killed. unable to return to embla unless I completed the mission and I don't have anywhere to go or many skills to make a living. So I am scavenging for stuff to sell. with the money I will buy better equipment and maybe become a spy, mercenary or just man for hire, but not a theif.'
"Hah, a likely story," said Bom.
Then his eyes widened.
"Wait, a mission? Embla? That's funny...What exactly was your mission? And why were you in this squad?"
The hansav groaned 'We were meant to deal with this mage problem, I was put in a group of individuals that were "hard to kill" first mage we ended up against caused the rest of my squad to kill each other but I got away thanks to my special skill' Just as he finished the hansav turned into a cloud, clothing and all. 'So that enough of my life, can we get back to telling me about the payment and job your offering'
'OI, I am not a thief, merely a man in unfortunate circumstances..... mercenary or just man for hire, but not a thief.' William looked surprised, it seemed they weren't the only group. The Hansav then confirmed Williams suspicions. "first mage we ended up against caused the rest of my squad to kill each other but I got away thanks to my special skill' The hansav turned into a cloud. 'So that enough of my life, can we get back to telling me about the payment and job your offering.' He nodded.
"Well the job I offer you is a very simple one, you see we are also one of the groups sent to deal with the mage threat. However we have been quite successful up until now, and seeing as you also have a special skill. I would like to offer you a positions in the group." The ash around William seemed to form an ash armor. "And if you accept and survive the mission. I will offer you a reward, I am quite wealthy you see." William still looked a bit stern, he wanted to make sure the Hansav knew who led the party.
"If you need some time away, I'm sure William wouldn't object. These are big changes, it's natural for some people to have averse feelings to it."
"If these changes your talking about are related to my powers, that's not the problem, I've been trying to get to this point for a while now. No, it's the same 'lack of a place' problem I've been fighting for years now" Rias said as she watched Karen start to poke around the chamber a bit, looking for signs of life
Claire heard mention of the mage who killed the party of enhanced beings. Claire bowed her head in silence for the fallen comrades. She may not have known them, but she knew they deserved better. "We've had a run in with a few mages. Did you happen to catch the name of the one who attacked you and your group - it never hurts to be prepared right?" she asked the thief. She didn't really approve of his actions, but then this was beyond her jurisdiction so she remained quiet.
Ivaan nodded, "I see." Ivaan shifted his weight on the slab he was sitting on, setting down his crutch.
"I think everyone would agree you will always have a place with us, if that helps."
Ivaan resisted the urge to scratch at his injury. The itching was good, it meant the wound was healing.
"Though I can understand if you need more than just us."
The hansav tried to hold back some laughter 'I am not going on the same suicide mission twice, what kind of fool would do that. I would rather just help with what ever you guys are digging up get some cash form that and then get on my way.'
"We've had a run in with a few mages. Did you happen to catch the name of the one who attacked you and your group - it never hurts to be prepared right?"
'He was some bear dude, grey hair staff using mage. Now I don't want to waste too much daylight and be caught out in the swamp at night so can we get on with what ever you guys want to dig up.'
Rias shook her head "No, I mean, I don't know what I supposed to do with my self, I 'don't know my place' in the world, there's things I can do well for sure, sing and dance being chief among these, but is that what I'm supposed to do? I do ok in a fight, is that it maybe?" she said, confused as always when ever she talked about this.
'Can you see if Abumot is still alive? cause I'm not see any sign of movement, not that means much' Karen thought to the Unicorn while as made her way back to where Rias and Ivaan where sitting "Well, I think he's dead, nothing down there look out of the ordinary, well, for a cave in anyway." she said once she by them "Also, the Hansav up stairs is looking for something 'valuable' and it's close enough 'he can taste it', apparently he's feeding the others a load of bull to, so I'll be back. Keep an eye on the mud pile eh?" and with that, Karen darted back up stairs to the rest of the group