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    Xerxes Ahasuerus
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  1. Hi welcome to the site. I still ind of new around here as well but I do a lot of RP experience in play by post sites.I haven't done a ton in game just because I haven't found the right group just yet but I'd be happy to run some threads here to start if you are looking or a writing partner.
  2. Sandor had noticed the slight coloring of her cheeks but he was unaware of the reason, memories of the previous night were still a bit foggy but he assumed that he’d likely done something offensive that he would eventually have to make up for down the road. Still, the opportunity for excitement had bled off most of the hangover and, while he still wished deep down that he could crawl off and sleep the rest of it off, he knew that they needed to get started soon. His stomach tried to rebel once more the moment he swallowed the first bite of food, but he willed himself to continue knowing that he would need the fuel once they started traveling. It was already hot outside and the trek, while safe, would be a grueling one. He chuckled a bit as she shared the slight smirk and mentioned that she was well-armed and actually smiled when she called over to Kern in an attempt to defend his remarks about the tiny establishment. Kern’s reply was a bit muffled, but Sandor assumed that it was something along the lines of “adventurers, god’s take ‘em”. While he might never have said so, the mercenary had come to appreciate the place and had come to think of it as much as a home as anywhere else he’d been to over the last several years. Kern’s discretion had been the initial reason for his returning to the place, but it was ultimately his friendship that had him continuing to return even after he’d lost and reasons to remain in Thanalan. Suddenly, she was all business. He watched her as she stood up and asked if they should head out soon and slowly nodded as he finished the piece of fruit he’d been eating. Downing his water, he called over to Kern who’d finally returned, “Well master barkeep, it’s been a pleasure. I hope this will make up for any inconvenience.” He tossed a sizeable bag towards the barkeep who caught it with a practiced ease and the clear sound of coins could be heard as Ker neatly placed the bag under the bar before nodding and offering Sandor a sad smile. “No inconvenience friend. I only wish that you had the chance to send Tuco to the hell he so richly deserves…” It was Sandor’s turn to nod but his features seemed to cloud only a little as he turned and grabbed his own weapon and sling the baldric over his shoulder adjusting it so the long, single edged blade rested along the small of his back. The katana was an unusual weapon rarely seen in these lands, but the warriors of the far east had sworn by them for centuries and Sandor had often remarked that the blades had no equal. Taking up a worn travel pack from under the table he’d used the night before, he slung it over his left shoulder and turned back to face the Viera. “Right you are then,” he said with another appraising look. She moved like someone who was trained so he was certain that the chakrams weren’t simply for show and her manner and bearing suggested that she would be up for a fight if need be. Still, she was new to the region and her unfamiliarity with how things work, especially when dealing with the seedy elements of Ul’dah, could be used against them. “We’ll need to fill a couple of waterskins before we head out. I’ve got trail rations that will see us through as we’re only traveling for a day. Once we’re on the road, I can fill you in on anything you think you might need to know about where we’re going or what to look out for so we don’t get ourselves killed.”
  3. Sandor couldn’t help but grin ever so slightly as her more positive appraisal of their situation. He’d been doing the work that got him to this point for nearly six years now and he would be the first to admit that his general outlook on live was colored by the sterling examples of man at their worst. He’d been dealing with scum for so long that he had come to accept men and woman like Rotah'wo as the norm instead of people like Kern and his family. Now she’d come along and offered to help, without being asked. He was wondering if she was truly altruistic or just stupid when she added that she was certain that the fixer was probably up to something at the very least. ‘Altruistic then,’ he thought to himself glad to see that she hadn’t let the stress of the situation rob her of her wits. He’d seen far too many more experienced people fall for Rotah'wo’s ploy, hell, he’d been close to doing exactly that himself. Finally, with a nod and a slight chuckle, he returned to his seat and grabbed some food for himself suddenly hungry as if the discomfort of his hangover was forgotten. “A positive attitude,” he said as he poured himself some more water then looked over at her with a questioning look to see if she wanted him to fill her mug as well. “I can appreciate that. Let’s hope your optimism remains after this job. Dealing with some of these people is enough to make even the coldest of us feel as if we need a bath after.” Taking a bite of one of the fruits that Kern had set up for them, he pondered her question and decided that, since they would be partners in this, he would be as forthright as he could be. There was no need to keep the location of their clandestine meeting place secret since she’d be finding herself there eventually anyway. “It’s not far,” he started as he made a gesture in the direction of the city. “Just outside the walls of Ul’dah, by the Gate of Nald. There’s a cozy little refugee camp called Stonesthrow, if your idea of cozy is a filthy and wretched jumble of tents and lean-tos ready to fall over with the slightest breeze. The people there are just downtrodden enough to let armed people move through unmolested, but the place is still dangerous if you’re not careful.” He turned back to his fruit taking another bit as he pondered the question about how they would get there. “We can walk there in about a half day,” he added knowing that there was no real danger on the road this close to the city. With a mon=un or carriage, the going would be pretty miserable with the desert heat, but he’d made the journey many times before and he suspected that Reijna was made of sterner stuff than her gentle appearance might have indicated. “There’s a place, a watering hole, someplace that makes this look like a palace,” he grinned as Kern shouted from the back what he thought of any potentially disparaging remarks about his place. With a wave and bow of his head in apology, Sandor continued. “Rotah’wo, with I’m certain more than a few of his goons, will be waiting for us there at first bell. If we leave this morning, we reach the city just after nightfall and even get some rest at the Quicksand for the night. It’s a far cry from sleeping in the loft over at the mill…”
  4. Sandor glared at her for a moment after she explained why she’d stood up and volunteered herself. Just what he needed in his life, another do gooding busybody who was likely going to get him stabbed, shot, burned, or mutilated in some horrific fashion. He looked as if was on the verge of replying, most likely to reveal those very same thoughts but instead. He closed his eyes and shook his head slowly seemingly defeated by the whole situation. “You don’t even know me,” he said in a barely heard whisper. “And if I’m right, I can’t imagine that I was anything but a bastard to you and everyone else when we met. Even Kern was put off by me, and he’s known me for years…” He finished with a resigned sigh and returned his gaze to her. This time there was no anger, only an intense clarity as he looked her straight in the eye as if searching for something. Like she said, they were now in this together and that meant that there was no looking back. He didn’t have to like it, but he did have to agree to their working together. “Well, you’re about to get an education on the seedy underbelly of Ul’dah,” he began as he turned to the door to see that Rotah'wo’s man was still speaking with Kern’s daughter. “Rotah'wo works for a group known as the Syndicate. Now, this group isn’t all, bad, in fact, most of what they do helps in the long run but there are those who use their connections to do bad things. That’s where fixers like him come into the picture.” Sandor stopped speaking as he heard the voice of his friend outside calling for his daughter, he was relieved to see that she was alone and hurrying towards her father though the man she’d been speaking to was gone. A little relieved that the girl was safe for now, he turned back to Reijna and offering a simple nod. “Let’s just say that there’s a lot that neither of us know. As far as who Rotah'wo works for? I have my suspicions but that a question best left to better men than myself at this time. What I do know is that we are both rightly screwed and, if we don’t succeed here, we’ll likely not see the next moon. The good news is that I’m very good at what I do so failure is not even on the table.” He ended with a confident grin that was genuine enough though he was already running some ideas in his head about whether or not this was just another set-up. Surely there would be easier ways to kill him, but the fixer was always running some sort of angle that made little sense to the mostly straight forward mercenary. Without any concrete evidence, he decided to keep his suspicions to himself while reminding himself to be wary. Until he saw more of her ability, he figured keeping Reijna focused on the job would probably be for the best. No need to worry her with what amounted to little more than idle speculation.
  5. It took all of Sandor’s discipline, yes, he possessed considerable discipline despite his previous actions, to not lash out at the woman as she intercepted his arm as it moved towards the fixer. Though it was a good thing that she interposed herself, he grunted in irritation at the interruption of the savage beating he was about to unleash. His reflexes were quick enough to halt his forward moment mostly though he still managed to bump into her back and was forced to place a stabilizing hand on her shoulder to make sure neither of them stumbled. The young woman’s offer gave him pause as he was about to move around her to finish the Miqo’te. He froze and closed his eyes as the fixer transformed back from his near panic to the smug superiority. The grip on her shoulder tightened almost as if response to the smile that slowly spread across the deceptively young-looking features as their new ‘employer’ suddenly knew that he had both of them. Sandor pulled has hand away before the grip could turn painful. After a momentary pause, he started to speak. “No,” his voice still carried the dangerous edge to it but a glance at his features would see a bit of worry creasing his brow. “She doesn’t know what she’s saying Rotah'wo. She also doesn’t know who you and those you work for-…” “Too late Sandor!” There was a gleeful tone in the other man’s voice as he rose to his feet and took a step back hopefully avoiding the much larger and faster mercenary. “I think I like the idea of our pretty little miss having to sully herself with he like of you. It might even teach the bitch a little bit about respecting her betters!” Sandor took a step towards Rotah'wo the murderous glint back in his eyes when something outside caught his attention. Kern’s daughter, the younger one who wanted to become a soldier was sitting on a crate with a non-descript man talking to her. While she appeared to be unconcerned by the man, Sandor immediately recognized one if his employer’s killers and froze in his tracks. “That’s right friend,” Rotah’wo said as he wagged a finger under the mercenary’s nose. The smug demeanor was back but now it was accompanied by no small measure of menace. “Why don’t you be a good little boy and relax a little bit. Have a drink, or… maybe several on me. Come to the usual place two nights hence… oh, and if both of you aren’t there, I will be most displeased.” He’d already tuned and was sauntering out of the tavern as he finished. With a final wave, he called back over his shoulder one last time. “I’ll leave my friend behind just in case you get any ideas. Besides, I would hate to drag him from his pretty little friend.” With that he was out and gone into the desert morning leaving Sandor and Reijna alone in the room. In the silence that followed, Sandor stood silently fuming balling his hands into fists and grumbling angrily under his breath. “Stupid,” was the first coherent word that came out of his mouth. Mostly out of concern for her safety, he couldn’t help but give voice to his frustration. Wheeling around to face her he spoke in a low growl, “Stupid girl! Why in the name of the Twelve would you do that?!”
  6. Sandor gave Kern a slight nod as the Miqo’te turned his attention towards the young Viera signaling that the barkeep should make himself scares for a few minutes. While he was well known for his discretion with those who sought his services many of his employers would have thought nothing of murdering a towns person for hearing too much. He thought that it was wisest to spare the barkeep any potential trouble and Kern seemed to be of the same mind. With a feigned harrumph at being dismissed, he quickly made good his departure announcing that he would be back soon. Sandor could tell that dismissing Reijna would not be so easy though, based on her posture, any concerns about her being able to take care of herself could be set aside for the moment. At another time, with someone different from the man sitting across from the, Sandor would have been amused but the fixer, as he’d come to know the Miqo’te, represented something that he’d suspected the young woman had never encountered before. At least for her sake, he’d hoped she’d never encountered the like before… Alert eyes narrowed as the fixer returned his attention back to Sandor who had remained still and silent during the exchange. That the young woman’s words had stung just a little was gratifying though he would have cautioned Reijna against antagonizing the man had he but a moment to do so. Not one to suffer insults lightly, Sandor was certain that the man would mark her for her for some future retribution. Another reason he might need to keep an eye on her…. At the mention of another job, he set all his other concerns aside. If the fixer was there to hire him, he’d put up with his presence for the time it took to work out a deal. That was until the man mentioned that he’d be needing a partner. “I work alone,” Sandor’s voice was low and angry as the other man seemed unimpressed. “You know that so why come all this way out here so you cane just go back to your masters and tell them what you knew I would say?” “Tsk,” the Miqo’te made an indelicate sound as a smug smile crossed his features. “You used to work alone friend. I think that Tannar would have preferred to have more people protecting his back considering how things turned out for him.” Sandor stiffened at the mention of his recently murdered employer. The glare he’d been wearing turned closer to the visage of a mad who was on the verge of a murderous rage. “Tannar has only been dead for two days,” the tightly controlled rage he was feeling turned his voice into a dangerous sounding growl. “The only way you could know now is if you’ve been speaking to Tuco…” “A blunt instrument to be sure but a very useful blunt instrument.” Unaware or at least unconcerned over Sandor’s rage, the Miqo’te continued seemingly relishing in his position. “With your recent failure, there are some in the Syndicate who thank that you need to remember your place. Now, I’ve convinced them that you still need to get paid, but it will be at half your rate and you will be taking on a partner for this job. Turning it down is not an option.” “You may thank me later.” “Thank you…?” Sandor was half out of his seat and already reaching for the fixer before the Miqo’te finally realized that he might have overplayed his hand. Arranging for the murder of a troublesome merchant might have put the tall mercenary at a disadvantage but coming to him so soon may have been a miscalculation. The smug expression faded as Sandor stood looking as if he was about to end the conversation far less civilly than expected…
  7. “Now what kind of man would I be to stand in the way of a child’s dream?” Sandor glanced over towards Reijna and offered her a conspiratorial grin. Seeing her smile and the mirth that danced in her eyes, he found himself realizing just how lovely she was. She was, of course, a member of a people who were widely considered attractive but something about her manner was quite appealing. The glasses she wore added a culture that he normally avoided due to his own discomfort among the gentler members of society. Just as Kern seemed about the make an angry retort, or at least another plaintive exclamation, Sandor turned back to his friend and raised his hands in supplication. “Of course,” he said chuckling at the barkeep’s discomfort. “I admit that I didn’t flat out refuse though. I simply agreed to train her the same way I’d been trained.” The last was added hastily as Kern rolled his eyes heavenward looking for deliverance. “Even I know that denying her is only going to make her want to become a soldier even more. Kurthekul didn’t teach me any fighting for more than a year so, unless she’s a stupid and single minded as I am, she’ll outgrow this long before I’ll be forced to make good on my agreement.” Kern vacillated between looking doubtful and ready to panic bringing another grin to the mercenary’s face as a pregnant silence followed. Just as the barkeep was about to frame a hopefully witty reply, the door swung open allowing the hooded figure to enter the small tavern. The humor left both men instantly at the newcomer’s arrival as Sandor grunted and turned back to the mug of water. For his own part, Kern looked almost ready to intercept the figure but moved away instead at a barely perceptible shake the mercenary’s head. “Not exactly,” came Sandor’s reply as he finally looked up from his mug to return the stare from the Miqo'te. If there anything to gleaned from his tone, it was that Sandor was not a fan of the man sitting across from him. After another pause where the two men locked gazes until the Miqo’te eventually dropped his a moment before Sandor spoke. “What are you doing here?”
  8. If Sandor heard Reijna’s stomach rumble he paid no mind instead seemingly content to keep his eyes focused on some point across the room and behind the bar as his sipped his water. He leaned back casually assuming a relaxed pose doing his best to ignore the distress he was feeling though the water was helping enough that he was beginning to figure life would be worth living after all. “Oh, aye m’lady,” Kern replied with pride his voice. He broke out into a broad grin as he glanced towards the door before continuing. “Three of them. The young one aren’t usually much help being so small but, with their older sister off to the city for errands, I figure I’d let them bring the water. They’re really interested in him.” The last was said a nod towards Sandor and a shrug. Why the children were so curious about his mercenary friend was a complete mystery to the barkeep for, as far as he knew, Sandor had never even glanced in their direction. At least not intentionally at any rate. He offered Reijna a grin as if speaking about the man who was only a few feet away was no big deal. “I guess I may have told them a tale or two about the time when Sandor and I met. A harrowing experience for me but one that may have got their imaginations runnin cause now, every time he comes around, they suddenly want to help…” Truth be told, that was why their older sister was in U’ldah with one of the local lads. Still too young to catch the eye of the handsome wanderer, she was clearly old enough to have notions of her own. Kern had initially reacted with amusement at her artless attempts to gain Sandor’s attention but something one of the soldiers said made the entire situation no longer amusing. When Sandor had arrived in the village three days ago, Kern had hastily penned a supply list and ordered one of the young men to take his daughter with him confident that the buying errand would be completed long after Sandor had left to do whatever it was that he did when not in the area. Though still seemingly uninterested, Sandor grinned ever so slightly. He’d of course noticed the children, when they weren’t on their best behavior, they were certainly loud enough. While they also appeared shy in from of their parents, they’d occasionally approached him while he was training and asked questions though he’d pointedly ignored their inquiries never having any idea that they knew he’d saved Kern’s life that day seven years before. “You and your stories Kern,” Sandor’s voice was low but carried a friendly tone as he shook his head. Emptying his mug with one last pull, he motioned for a refill and grimaced in pain at the silent refusal from his friend before rising to his feet to walk over himself and refill the cup. “I always wondered why the follow me around with those wide-eyed looks as if they’re waiting for something happen. Like my life’s some huge adventure like in the sagas with danger lurking around every corner…” He took a long drink for the mug before refilling it again and returning to his seat. He shook his head again slowly and grinned up at the other man who at least had the good grace to look embarrassed before adding, “You know the girl asked me to teach her how to be a soldier.” Kern blanched at that and was about to make an angry retort when he suddenly laughed at the revelation. “That’s funny,” he said after a moment of mirth. “I, of course, expect that you told her no… right?” “…Right?!”
  9. Sandor blinked as the young woman lectured him about “traipsing about”. He looked down at himself as she finished wondering what was so frightening about him and couldn’t help but grin at the idea of a full-grown woman reacting to his appearance the way she had. Normally he received a second look or maybe even a compliment but never in his days had someone taken offense… “Okay,” he replied with a shrug as he moved over towards the bar and picked up a shirt that had been left upon it by Kern earlier when he’d left after granting his friend permission to perform his forms inside. The shirt was a bit small for his powerful form but, he pulled in on over his head and shrugged into it. Once it was on, he turned back towards the woman and spread his arms a little as he offered a mock bow. “Does this meet with your approval then?” He was about to say something else when Kern’s voice interrupted. “Ah, m’lady,” came the pleased greeting. “It’s good to see you again. Pray, forgive my absence but I just came from the kitchen with something that even the good ser might be able to stomach.” Sandor grimaced as the sight of his friend carrying a large tray with breakfast caused his stomach to do a back flip. Fighting down the urge to run off and empty the contents of his stomach for the third time since rising this morning, he simply shook his head declining as politely as he could the offer of food for the moment. Ignoring his friend’s obvious discomfort, Kern made his way into the tavern and placed the tray on the table before Reijna. While it was simple enough fare, the barkeep had prepared enough for the three of them to eat their fill despite knowing that Sandor would likely only drink the cold water that was in the two pitchers being carried in by his daughter and son who had come in right behind him. As they’d been taught, the two children came in and placed their burden onto the table offering little more than a furtive glance towards the two patrons before scurrying back into the yard. “Thanks,” was all the mercenary said as he watched the kids leave. Grabbing an empty tankard from the bar, the moved to the table and poured himself some water before moving off the table he’d been using the night before. Taking a seat, he sipped slowly resisting the urge to down the drink in the one gulp that he wanted to. He’d be damned if he showed any more weakness this morning…
  10. Sandor ignored the pain in his head as he followed through on the gentle movement of his form. Slow and with a serene discipline, the kata allowed him to focus his mind and ease the stiffness in his joints caused by his recent drunken stupor in an uncomfortable chair. A deep inhale caused his damaged ribs to flare in pain but, again, he ignored the discomfort allowing his mind to settle. A slow exhale helped with he pain and the movement, as he stepped to his right to continue, brought an even greater sense of peace to his troubled soul. The kata was a series of gentle movements that he would normally have avoided, even with the hangover. His normal training routine was a bit more intense but, given that someone had gone to great lengths to get him patched up, he figured a couple days of light training would be advisable. Given his inner turmoil, the kata was actually helping him reign in the anger he felt at himself for allowing Tuco to escape justice. Focusing on the form allowed Sandor to also recognize that not everything was as simple as he’d like it to be and that some things simply could not be rushed. Tuco would get his, in a week, a month, or a decade, that was something that he knew for certain and even that thought was enough to bring a little peace. Not that training had agreed with him at first, two attempts had to be aborted when his stomach decided to rebel strenuously at the early activity. Now he was fully into the kata and the aches and pains of the battle were of little consequence. He was unclear about the specifics, but it was obvious that someone had taken the time to clean and bind his wounds. He dimly recalled the young woman ordering to sit and turning to Kern and instructing him to fetch towels and water, so he’d guessed that they had something to do with it. His memories of the evening before were, at best fractured, so anything could have occurred he supposed. Still, he was fine aside from what may have been the worst hangover since the Calamity. That was something. Now, he was still stripped down to the waist, but he was clean and the bandages on his wounds were fresh and blood free. Best of all, he no longer smelled like something had died in a distillery and he features, aside from bruising under his left eye and a painful looking cut across the bridge of his nose were clear and free from the drunken caste that must have made him a sight to behold the night before. That ragged and staggering figure was gone, replaced by the surprisingly graceful student of the martial arts who was practicing now as the woman entered the tavern. Dark eyes glanced in her direction as Sandor continued his form. It only took another couple of moments for him to finish up and, when he did so, he gathered up a towel from the table and used it to wipe his brow. With a brief nod, he acknowledged Rejina’s presence and spoke in a clear, far less guttural voice than the night before. “Good morning,” he said without any hint of discomfort one might expect given the circumstances of their meeting the night before. He took stock of her with the glance though it was a far cry for the drunken leer of the night before and decided that he had to admit that she was quite pleasing to look upon. He’d always been drawn to exotic and interesting women and the Viera were both of those things’ truth be told. “So, Kern should be back soon. He said something about getting breakfast,” he paused briefly as the though of food almost caused his stomach to rebel once more. After the brief pause, he continued. “He said that anything you want is on me. I guess that I owe you one…”
  11. Kern hustled from the room calling out in a loud voice to someone beyond to attend him. Though his voice could be hear giving instruction to the unseen person who’d responded, the exact wording was muffled to those inside. After several minutes, the sound from the yard faded and an eerie stillness fell over the tavern. “S’ nothin,” Sandor said after the lengthy silence. Responding to the surprise the others displayed at his condition so long after showed just how disjointed he’d become. “After th’Ridge, the only piece o’me not bruised, brkn, or bloody was me’little toe!” Kern, who just returned with a large bowl of water and several towels under his arm as Sandor finished, frowned and cleared his throat. “Well,” he began with a quick glance towards Reijna. Though most wouldn’t recognize the reference to the obscure battle Sandor mentioned, Kern knew all too well what his friend was speaking of. Discretion was something both men had learned the importance of and the barkeep was uncertain that other man would be happy to learn that he’d talked about those events in a drunken stupor. “Why don’t we look at your injuries good ser,” he continued as he moved towards the woman offering her one of the towels. While he’d bandaged more than a few injuries in his day, he was no medic and he figured she was probably more versed in first aid than he was. “You can regale us with your misadventures after the chirurgeon has a look at you.” With a sideways look he added in a low voice the Reijna, “I sent my girl to fetch someone from the outpost m’lady. They’ll probably sent an inexperienced clod with nothing but thumbs but they’ll probably be a sight better than we will at this…” For his own part Sandor fell silent as Kern spoke to the woman, the mercenary slumped a little further into the chair and dropped his chin down closing his eyes as he waited for the chirurgeon to come. Within seconds of falling still, they could hear his breathing even out as he promptly fell asleep. Kern, strode over and poked the much larger man in the shoulder in an attempt to see if he was really out. When there was no noticeable reaction, he turned towards Reijna and shrugged. “I suppose this’ll make things easier for when someone comes to bandage him up.” With that, he fell silent content to wait or lend a hand in cleaning up the other man’s injuries.
  12. Sandor didn’t try and avoid Reijna when stepped in front of him. He was honestly too tired and the blows to his head, along with the alcohol were beginning to make his head swim. When she took the dishes from his arms and ordered him to sit, he expected that she was going to do something about his injuries so complied without complaint. He couldn’t help but grin as she offered her assessment of his condition even offering a reply in his drunken tones… “Nah,” he said with a false frown. “No way one child’d take me out… Two? Well then, m’be I’d be in trouble…” With that said, he started removing the leather breast guard that he was wearing. Underneath was a light tunic that had been soaked through in a couple of places with blood from injuries he’d received during the fight that had ended with his former employer’s murder. As Reijna moved away and spoke to Kern asking for a towel and bowl of warm water, he pulled the tunic over his head revealing a powerfully muscled torso that was even more battered looking than his face had been. Dozens of healed scars marked his body but there were several recent wounds that looked to be in need of serious attention. The deep slashes, that had started healing had been pulled open during the fist and a large and angry bruise dominated the right side of Sandor’s ribcage. Falling still once again, he turned to regard his friend who looked at him in alarm as he hesitated before answering the woman’s query. “Er… yes! Of course miss,” Kern waved the plate of bread that he’d returned with and nodded at the other plate, stacked with fruit, meat, and chees that he’d brought just in case there was change in mind… He hustled past and into the room placing the platters onto the bar while muttering loudly enough to be heard. “By the Twelve! Had I but known, I would have never agreed…” With that said, he turned back to Reijna and relieved her of her burden. “I’ll get those for you straight away,” he said with one more look over his shoulder at his injured friend. “Honesty, I had no idea he’d been that badly hurt.” With that, he was off leaving the room empty aside from the pair. Sandor sat quietly as instructed with eyes that were unfocused seemingly content to wait until someone came to either patch him up or put him out of his misery. At this point he was beyond caring too much…
  13. Kern offered a resigned nod before glancing over towards Sandor who seemed disinclined to offer any comment, at least for the moment. While new customers where rare and he would have raged about once being chased off, he had to admit that he was as much to blame for the ill-conceived plan as the mercenary was. He agreed that Tuco needed to put down like the rabid dog that he was, but it was truly a shame that the woman had come along when she had and got swept up into things. “Of course, young miss,” he replied with a sigh. “Right away miss…” He turned and made his way hastily out the door heading towards the kitchens of his home that stood across the small throughway that served as a road. After a few moments silence descended on the small tavern as Sandor remained in his seat studying something only he could see in the corner of the room. After a couple f minutes, he rose from his seat with grunt and started towards the still un-moving form of Hedrik. Confident that the man would be out for a while, he bent down and grabbed the unconscious mercenary by the front of his tunic and levered him up into an over the shoulder carry. Huffing not out of strain but knowing that he was probably too drunk to do this for very long, he carried Hedrick to the door and out into the front of the building where he deposited the body gently to the ground. Returning to the tavern, he said to nobody in particular. “Should a’least take out th’garbage…” Staggering a step as his strength was fading quickly, he turned and started towards the third man he’d pummeled who was starting to stir. He hauled the man up to his feet and started walking the barely aware former opponent to the door shaking his head as the man asked. “What happened! Did we win?” Sandor murmured something to the man in a barely audible voice who slowly seemed to realize that the man who’d so easily beaten him only a few moments before was the one who was keeping him steady. Eyes widening in surprise, he paled as he likely assumed that the same thing was about to happen. Fortunately, all Sandor did was escort him to his the final unconscious man and reply in a voice that dripped with menace. “No, you didn’t. Now get yer friend here, and th’scum outside and leave this village. In 24 hours, I see any o’you anywhere near Ul’dah, I’ll kill you…” The man didn’t; need to be told twice. With a frantic cry, he knelt and started to haul the man up who was only now barely beginning to stir. After a few minutes the pair managed to get to their feet and started out into the now cool evening. Sandor stood glowering at the departing men and, after they faded from view, the empty portal for several long minutes before eventually turning to scan the room with a critical eye. Without a glance towards Reijna, he started moving about the room picking up the scattered mugs and plates doing his best to clean up the mess that had been made during the brief scuffle. At ne point, he paused and waved a hand towards the door and spoke. “There’s a mill out that way ‘bout half a maim from ‘ere. It’s clean and warm but, best’ve all, it’s safe. Th’ miller’s a good man and the price to crash is fair.”
  14. Welcome then Verona. I'm still pretty new here to but I think this is a great resource to meet similarly minded people. I'm not on the same server as you but I'd be happy to chat and rp if you're looking for writing friends.
  15. “Sandor…” Kern stammered out the still weaving mercenary’s name as the young woman turned her ire back towards him. The barkeep said the name three more times as Reijna sauntered over and grabbed Sandor by front of his collar and jerked him forward and off balance. He uttered a last strangled gasp as Sandor was shoved back to stagger three steps before coming to a seat, hard, on one of the few chars that had managed to remain standing during the brief fight. With a sigh he resigned himself to whatever fate held in store for him once all of this was over. Sandor’s dark eyes flashed dangerously as he managed to keep himself upright and looked at the woman. She’d seemed to be nothing more than a slip of a girl but there was strength there that was surprising and the fire in her eyes when he’d made her angry intrigued him. He still had the fire in his own belly for a fight and, for a moment, it looked as if he was going to continue by testing her mettle instead of finishing off Tuco and his men. Just as it looked as if was going to jump up and start the fight all over, Sandor blinked and his whole posture relaxed. “Fair ‘nuff,” he muttered in a not unfriendly tone. He turned and looked down at Hedrik’s unconscious form with a grunt of satisfaction and was about to say something else when he noticed that Tuco and the rest of his men were gone! “Dammit Kern!” he howled surging back to his feet realizing as he did so that Reijna was right, he was in no shape to fight, not anymore today at least. Staggering three steps towards the much smaller man who looked partly terrified and partly amused at the same time, he waved vaguely towards the universe in general before continuing. “Ye’ had one job, keep ‘em here and you blew it! I thought we ‘ad a plan!” “Wha-!?” Kern sputtered out a string of babble before finding his voice, however plaintive it was. “I tried to warn you but you were so busy fooling around with the young miss, er beggin m’lady’s pardon… that I couldn’t get your attention!” As Kern reddened at his inappropriate singling out of Reijna. Sandor turned and regarded the young woman with a critical eye. Sure, he’d been a little taken aback by her untimely arrival but distracted? No, he was sure that he’d been as focused on the plan to kill Tuco for his former employer’s murder as he’d been when he’d approached the barkeep the day prior. He’d taken a punch to make sure that she was not injured and, well he had grabbed her breasts, that was kind of uncalled for but he’d paid a price for that gaff as well. Still, maybe the barkeep was right, maybe he hadn’t been as focused, too many drinks perhaps… Kern continued bringing Sandor back from his musing. “The plan was, if I recall, to was to challenge an overconfident then lure him outside Tuco to kill him on the street. Thus avoiding…. This!” Sandor turned and swept the room with the practiced eye of a highly trained warrior, the highly trained warrior with a concussion and far too much drink. As far as fights went, this one wasn’t so bad. Chairs got strewn about the floor and one of the tables had been damaged but, aside from some blood on the floor and the three unconscious men, there was little sign of the fight anywhere. “Bah,” Sandor’s’ inarticulate reply came with another odd wave of his hand. “Tis nothin’ Kern! Ain’t nobody even died and I paid you fer damages already!” The barkeep uttered an exasperated sigh before shaking his head and speaking in a more conciliatory tone. “What’s done is done Sandor, Now why don’t you follow the lady’s instructions and sit down before you fall down. I’ll fetch you something to eat and see if can’t send someone to the garrison to bring a chirurgeon to look at that head of yours.” As Sandor staggered back to his table all the ease that he’d moved with during the fight seemed gone as the adrenaline faded. Kern looked towards the woman and offered a welcoming smile. “We thank you miss,” a glare oved towards the mercenary’s direction as Sandor called over something about him not being appreciative of her interference. “We do appreciate your help against that band of cutthroats and, if you’re still in need of food and drink, whatever I can give you is on the house.” Sandor grumbled something under his breath about letting Tuco and the others get away. He knew he was too far gone now the catch up with them, hell they were probably half way to Black Brush by now and, if they had ant sense, they’d keep running until they hit Vesper Bay and were on a ship to anywhere that wasn’t readily accessible. Returning to his seat, he glowered at the unconscious forms of the men he’d taken out for a minute before noticing the medal that was lying on the floor among the debris. A strange look, maybe one of guilt or shame, flashed across his features and he bent down and scooped the medal up and quickly placed it in a pouch on his belt. Clearly, he didn’t want anyone to get too good a look at it…
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