[RP Episode] Tales of the Town: The Order


#1

The Order

It is evening in Maruba, darkness has just fallen upon the smoking rooftops. A chill wind is howling through the alleyways, and biting in any exposed flesh it can find. In one of these alleyways, a man is standing. He is slouched against the wooden wall of the building and completely invisible to the naked eye, owing to the positioning of the street light on the street behind him.

The man stands there for quite a while, not moving a muscle. Minutes turn into hours, and the wind is gaining in momentum as clouds build up above the city. Then footsteps can be heard through the howling. Yes, it must be. What more, the owner of the footsteps seems to have company. An echo of steps split the borderline eeriness that so far had filled the night. A shadow flickers past the gap of the street that the man can see. More follows, shadow after shadow, foot after foot, they move past his hiding spot. He waits until he is certain that the sounds are dying away, before climbing the rough wall and setting after the disappearing sounds of crackling gravel.

The hooded figures move east through the sleepy town, nearing the Dunír. Just before reaching the city centre however, the party stops, lifts a manhole cover from the road, and descends into the darkness, one after another. The watching man bites his lip. He hadn’t expected this. Shadowing someone above ground was one thing, but doing so while to your knees in muddy water was impossible. Balancing on the ledge of the three-story building he stood on, he caresses his short, black beard, deep in thought.

A plank in the roof is dislodged, and slowly but surely, it begins to glide. Just as the last figure disappears down into the black void below the streets, it reaches the edge and tumbles down onto the street, where it breaks into seven pieces with an earsplitting clatter, which causes the observer to spin around, and just in time too. Vaulting down backwards off the roof, he just avoids the purple blade aimed to cut him straight in half. Dropping down a story at a time, he jumps the last eight feet and sets off at a sprint. He was caught.


[CANON RP Episode] The Great Tournament
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#2

With a near inhumane velocity, the man veers onto the main street towards the usually ever busy Freedom Square. It is completely abandoned at this hour however, as there is but one way in to the Red Harbor, through the wall. This makes it harder for the man to hide. Steps approach from his right, as another man leaps out of the darkness between two street lights, another purple blade blazing in his hand.

The fleeing man reaches within his robes just in time to pull out a short object, which ignites similarly to his two pursuers’ had – but with orange – and he parries the oncoming foe’s blade with an otherworldly, almost echoey sound. The change in direction and velocity had, however, unbalanced the man, and he tumbles sidewards. Parrying another blow while still on the ground, he straightens up quickly to face the two hooded figures approaching. The one on the right aims a swing at his feet, which he jumps, parrying the other blade, as its owner tries to pierce his chest. The echoes ring out into the night, faint whispers which go by unnoticed by the sleeping citizens of the town, drowned by the whistling winds.

Despite parrying blow after blow, the man with the orange blade is forced ever backwards, past the Torch, past the market stalls, and right to the ledge of the square. Tired, he attempts one last jab at the left man, actually grazing his shoulder and making him cry out in agony, but it wasn’t his sword arm, so his situation was no better than before, worse even, for his attack had been exploited massively by the second figure, who forces him into jumping onto the balustrade to avoid being cut in half. Another swing is issued by the figure, and the sheer force of the clash of blades knocks the man point blank off his balance and putting the blade out in the last second, he lands head first in the black water below. He does not resurface.

The purple glow fades as the two figures reach the edge and look down. They stand and watch the water for a long time. A very long time. Their cloaks billowed eerily in the wind, but they seemed not to care, all their attention was on the water. But their wait is for nothing, and as the sky opens up and begins to turn ever so slightly red beyond the Eastern Gate, they pull open the nearest manhole and vanish out of sight, just as the first fisherman of the morning makes his way around the corner of the Copper Inn for a shot of strength before taking on the might of the Calledian Sea. Morning had come.


#3

The light house had appealed to Danek the first time he saw it. Sturdy and tall it marked the entry to the inner docks and the Red Harbor. Seeing it shooting out from the monotone hilly landscape appearing along their right gave him a whole new sense of euphoria however. The adventure had come to and end at last. He was home! As he stood up, the wind caught hold of his short, amber curls, forcing him to sit down again. Despite this, one could not argue that the day of their arrival back to the capital was a fine one. The sun stood high in the azure sky and the water blooms marking the beginnings of spring were covering the surfaces of the stone walls of the docks.

They were passing the light tower now. Looking up, he saw the guards above look down upon them and put their right fists to their chests; the greatest salute you could get off a roklavian. The town had prepared for them. Most likely tipped off by one of the many birds the Jarl had sent off late the previous day, they had draped the harbor and even the Freedom Square with banners in the national colors. He was astonished to see that they even had managed to switch the flame of the Torch to red, the color of strength.

Looking around, he spotted his Jarl, deep in conversation with the lásemen, explaining all about the different views of the city in a murmur. Councilman Bogdán on the other hand, was standing up in the ship just ahead of their own, happily waving to the crowd assembled on shore. Most of his fellow champions mimicked him, and possessed by a sudden urge of juvenile happiness he cried out, from the bottom of his lungs, only to hear his voice echoed back hundredfold.

As they reached the docks, ropes were thrown down to them which they attached to pegs in the water, before disembarking and taking the steps, Valdemar, Virion and Meira in the lead, up onto street level. Applauds issued from the crowd, as the Jarl raised his hands into the air, and shouted, “my dear Marubans, we have done it!” Further clapping issued at this statement. A group of marblers came bustling forward amidst the ovation, led by a freakishly tall woman with thick black hair. She approached the Jarl while the rest of the officers formed a passage for them to follow, towards the square. Valdemar nodded at what the woman said, then beckoned the party forwards.

As they entered the square, again to a round of applauds, the rest of the council came into view, standing behind a long, beautifully patterned carpet, leading from the east entrance of the square to where they stood, and all over stood people, men, and women, and children, human and marubi alike, only held back by the marblers, forming a continued passage for them. The council stood on a newly erected wooden stage at the foot of the Torch, where usually the fountain poured, with the Statue of Protection looming over them with its large shield casting them somewhat into shadow. The marblers followed them until they reached it, and proceeded to stand in a semicircle around it. The champions were told to stand in a line before the stage, while the officials walked up onto it, shaking hands with the other council members, and turning to the expectant crowd.

First up, Valdemar stepped into the middle of the stage, and put his hands together ceremoniously. “Marubans!” he cried out, “my dear marubans! Over the last weeks, these brave, young souls have shown a never subsiding thirst to accomplish what no man has ever managed before them. They have tackled giants! They have split arrows with arrows! They have gone and unequivocally proven to the North, that they, you, the people of Maruba, are none to be underestimated!” A great cheering came at this, so the Jarl paused to let the words sink in before continuing. “I am however, most displeased, my dear citizens,” he continued, “that while our fierce champions delivered above all critique, the ruler of Roklavia, the woman you all know as Valentina I, cancelled the diplomatic arrangements before they even had time to commence.” Angry muttering spread like wildfire around the square, but the Jarl raised a hand to usher silence.

All is not dark however,” he said, “while there is little doubt that the roklavian withdrawal was most cowardly, I managed to get a deal across before that time!” The silence intensified. “A new migrational pact has been agreed upon!” Valdemar finished with great satisfaction “It has long been our hearts’ deepest sores to go on without our loved ones, some of whom, were lost to us in the time of the hellish uprising. A new agency will be implemented from next full moon however in both capitals, to match names and descriptions to bind severed families back together. Once a match is made it shall be permitted for all free citizens of both nations to move across the sea one direction or the other, to reunite.” One standing outside the east wall might have thought a bomb just went off midtown, that was the extent of the cacophony that greeted the last announcement.

Catching a glance from Vitéz however, Valdemar cleared his throat, and said, “Marubans, I could go on further into details, but I do believe that our champions deserve an introduction!” With those words, Bogdán took his place. “First up, ladies and gentlemen, it is an honor to present to you, first up onto stage, a young man who’s shown a skill with mallets that few believed of him. Although finally defeated in the quarter finals by the berserker of Smergrad, Antonio Cladovoi, he single handedly fought through five rounds of opponents of all shapes and sizes from every corner of the high north! Petyr Askovic!” The man farthest to the left jumped up onto the stage to receive the ovations of the crowd. He had a fine golden mustache that Valdemar quietly thought would serve him well one day when he sought to settle down with a woman. After bowing for the umpteenth time, Petyr stepped back and stood at the back of the stage, allowing for the speaker to continue. Bogdán continued to summarize the deeds of each champion in alphabetical order. After each name the crowd cheered and clapped, and medals of service were handed out.

When all of the people who’d participated had been called, Valdemar once again took the stage. “Never forget, marubans, that this day shows why every man who gets to call him- or herself a Maruban, ought to do so with pride. Walk tall, marubans, and never forget! Qi juat’v nhi bonh!

The crowd began dispersing and together with an escort of marblers, the party began moving up the main street towards Fehérvár, where the champions would be enjoying a feast before dispersing themselves. The Jarl and the lásemen walked a bit behind the others. “What do you think so far, my good Virion?” he asked the young man.

@ProfessorPekka


#4

“I must say, Maruba is very comfortable. A warm welcome, good company, proper houses - no quartz monoliths - and a delightful ceremony: what else could you want?”
    The group continued exchanging pleasantries for a while, as the ground beneath their feet became ever steeper, until they reached the stairs leading up to a gargantuan castle, towering atop a mountain and so visible above the other buildings. After climbing the many stairs, Virion and Meira were escorted by a female servant to a prepared room, and told to be down in the dining hall for the feast in an hour’s time. There they were welcomed by Valdemar, then parted ways to enjoy the festivities. After the feast had finished, Valdemar went and found Virion and Meira, sitting in a corner of the dining hall, enjoying a pudding. “In spite of Valentina’s cancellation,” he said, “we would still be interested in forging an alliance with Lásenor. Trading routes would be set up of course, as well as the two nations agreeing to mutually come to one another’s aid, should they require it from them.”
    “I’m afraid I don’t think we’ll be too helpful with defense,” Meira said, “but an alliance would certainly benefit both nations.” “Indeed so it would seem,” Valdemar said with a pleasant smile. “Of course, forgive me, before such matters can be fully agreed upon, I will have to arrange audience your mother, princess, and inspect the land with which we are to forge such links with. If all is as it should, and nothing problematic arises, then I see no problem with the what we’ve discussed so far. I suggest we make a draft of what each party would want out of such an alliance tomorrow morning, the journey has taken a toll on me at the very least, and I suspect that you feel similar.” Virion nodded. “Alright! I hope you’ve enjoyed the feast, friends! Sleep well!” and with those words he left them there and went on to speak animatedly in a tongue neither of them understood with another man.

Formatting tomorrow