Moderator: Oru

The Silent Treatment

Oru
Advanced Member
Oru
Advanced Member
Joined: March 10th, 2011, 3:32 pm

December 5th, 2017, 3:10 am #1

Maverick Nightingale sat, chin in hand at yet another tavern. Yet another sourly un-talented youth belting the most popular road song at the top of his lungs. Maverick heard the fifth measure lift was off key and the refrain was NOT lining up with the poor minstrel's furious strumming.

Damis tapped Maverick on the shoulder and made a set of bored hand gestures. Maverick rolled his eyes. He would have said something like, "well it isn't like you can hear how bad it is," but, well, Maverick had no voice.

Worst day of his life. And though he was usually one for a good story, it was kind of hard to tell when one couldn't speak. And he hated that story anyway.

It was a common mistake; thinking Mav could speak. He still had his tongue, after all. But the scar across his throat spoke of a deeper injury, laced with poisonous magic and malice, and ... Well. That was why he liked wearing scarves. Beside - Mav thought a good scarf looked dashing.

Damis made the same series of gestures. He was a snarky kid. He was in good shape, a farmer's boy from birth, stocky, but five feet tall if he was lucky. He was twelve, with dark hair flouncing unevenly into his brown eyes. And he was also deaf as a stump.

Figured.

Maverick waved him off and finished his ale. Maverick was not stocky, nor was he a farmer's child, In fact, he wasn't even particularly athletic. He had the hands of a musician, refined and dexterous. He had elegant hands and middling elegant features. His ashy blonde hair was cut short and easy to maintain. When he sang, he could get women to swoon - some men too, actually, not that he was picky. And that wasn't it -he was a bard. A true bard, a bard that could cast magic with the very sound of his voice. He could entrance a room, make people happy or sad, he could animate suits of armor to dance! (He did that once, true story.)

But he couldn't sing anymore. Because he had no voice. And now he was stuck listening to amateurs play in crappy roadside taverns with a deaf kid.

But... he could still play. Maverick waited for the set to end, despite Damis' gesticulations. And then, he raised a hand in the air. After he'd received the innkeepers attention, He lifted his other hand; clasping the case for his Bell Harp.

The Innkeeper shrugged and gestured at the stage. Maverick got up and tossed some shaggy brown hair out of his eyes. They were hazel - proudly more green in the sunlight, thank you.

Damis rolled his eyes and picked at the now cold scraps of mutton on his plate.

Maverick ascended the platform and took a stool, resting the bell harp on a knee. He tuned it gently, and started to play. A few soft notes at first, coaxing out the shy dredges of magic in the room. And then he picked up the pace, exuding confidence and skill with each stroke of the strings. The music came out as he intended. He strummed and plucked with relish, he cast his eyes about the room and saw it working. In his minds eye he could feel the magic warming up to start it's dance. Mav felt it under his skin like a sleepy limb. The magic started moving about like wisps of invisible smoke. The song was longing, adventure, it was the length of endless road...

Something smacked him in the back of the head and he tripped over a chord.

The patrons blinked and returned to their games and drinks. Several chuckled.

Damis scowled over Maverick's shoulder and pointed at the bell harp. Then the kid gestured at the patrons and then motioned to Maverick's throat and made a gag face.

Maverick sighed. Fine. Normal music. He could play normal music.

And he did. At least he could content himself with the thought that he played better then anyone he'd heard in the last week.

Demis returned to his seat and finished gnawing on the mutton and watched Maverick play with his face in his hands, almost as if he could hear it. Which he couldn't. Because he was deaf.

Oh, what a pair.



Shout out to all those players I miss, and the new friends I make.
Quote
Like
Share

Elena
Advanced Member
Elena
Advanced Member
Joined: March 9th, 2011, 3:04 am

May 18th, 2018, 2:33 am #2

Reika Halfthorn pulled her hood a little higher over her head and ducked down over her table. She was hungry, and quite broke. She was one of the few patrons in the inn without a plate of food in front of her. She wasn't sure why she'd even bothered to stop there. Her feet ached and she needed a break from walking, but the smells coming from the kitchen were nearly torture.

When the suave bard took his place on the stage, she rolled her eyes. If only she had a skill like that to get herself traveling money! For now she was stuck with hard to catch bounties and manual labor- and very few people were willing to hire her for such tasks. She didn't look nearly as strong as she was.

She carried an ordinary short sword on her hip, various knives, and strapped to her back was a heavy battle hammer. Her uniform said "mercenary" but her face said "pouting girl." She sometimes wished that she had been born a boy. At least then people would take her seriously. How much faster could she have caught up to that Sorcerer if she'd had the same help a traveling man would?

Her stomach growled and she sat back in her chair. There was something funny about the music in the air. Curious, she glanced over at the bard on the stage. Time was slowed for the other diners, but not for her. She narrowed her eyes.

Magic.

When the boy interrupted the man's performance, she locked eyes with him. Then, quickly, pulled her hood in front of her face and rose from her table, rushing from the inn. How had she gotten so close to a spell caster and not even noticed? And one that did not need to speak his spells!

Reika furrowed her brow and ducked around the side of the inn. She would wait, then. Even if he never came out, she couldn't make a seen in such a crowded place. There were too many people who wouldn't understand.
Forum Admin
Quote
Like
Share

Oru
Advanced Member
Oru
Advanced Member
Joined: March 10th, 2011, 3:32 pm

May 18th, 2018, 10:25 am #3

Maverick finished a set of several songs, changing to keep the mood interesting, and when he was finished, even without the aid of magic to seduce the audience, he received a modest round of applause.

COnsiering the size of the establishment and what kind of patrons - mostly working folk - it was a great number. He'd been a bard for a while even before the loss of his star appendage, and he had learned many things from the Estara Roaming Bardic Academy. And though numbers weren't his strong suit, he knew enough to do a light con, as well as to figure the percentage of crowd attendance versus worth.

When he had finished, he saw that Demis was snoozing peacefully at he table, head dropped into the crook of his arm, other hand still holding a piece of mutton. With a deathly silent sigh of frustration, Maverick pulled his hand out of his food and wrapped his napkin around Demis' now dirty hand. (Well he wasn't about to sit there and clean the boy's fingers, he wasn't Demis' father, Thank the Gods.)

He received a complementary ale and after he finished that and took the walk down the back hall to the privies, he decided he needed some air, leaving the kid to snooze a bit longer in the pub.

The cool evening air hit him like a refreshing hammer, and he breathed a nice deep breath of the - well, the ally between the tavern and the stables. Which was particularly aromatic, but still, nice and cool.

He remembered the days smoking a long pipe in the study of Count Egregor after a performance. Ugh. Why couldn't he have been cursed with no sense of smell?

Shout out to all those players I miss, and the new friends I make.
Quote
Like
Share

Elena
Advanced Member
Elena
Advanced Member
Joined: March 9th, 2011, 3:04 am

May 19th, 2018, 1:30 am #4

Reika was digging through trash when Maverick exited the inn. She'd found an entire loaf of bread- which had admittedly been burned throughout. But char was still better than nothing. It wasn't enough, though, and she was hoping for something a bit more satiating.

She started when the bard rounded the corner, and ducked down behind the bin. It was just the two of them in this alley, and he didn't seem to know that she was there. Cautiously, she peaked around the edge of the garbage barrel. His back was to her, but there was no mistaking him, or his magical aura. Once he'd shown it to her, she would never lose the sense of it.

Maverick was greeted by a different sort of hammer. Reika struck him from behind, across the side of his head- not hard enough to kill, but definitely hard enough to incapacitate. She had to make sure that he didn't cry for help, and she had some questions to ask him. Sorcerers tended to know each other, after all. Everyone knew they had to study together to perfect their craft. Or, at least, Reika was pretty sure about it.

She caught him by the hood of his cloak and flung him against the side of the barn, hefting the hammer in her other hand. If he struggled, she would move to strike again, if he didn't, she would go into questioning.
Forum Admin
Quote
Like
Share

Oru
Advanced Member
Oru
Advanced Member
Joined: March 10th, 2011, 3:32 pm

May 19th, 2018, 1:41 am #5

You know, it's actually quite lovely out. Cool enough to refresh one from the toils of the day and the smells of the indoors - even the smell of horses brings about a sense of impending journey! If every night were like this one, life may not be so bad. Maybe my luck is turning around! Perhaps tomorrow Demis and I -

Maverick's thoughts were rudely interrupted by something very painful colliding with the side of his head. Stars and lightning swam and flashed behind his eyes, superimposing warped images of pain on the landscape of the ally. He was being moved without his intention.

Mugged. He was being mugged.

I fucking hate my life. Gods; you can all just die in a hole.

He would have cried out. If. He. Had. A. Tongue. But he didn't. So he just sort of opened his mouth and gaped, stunned, as the warmth of his own blood trickled down the side of his head. His eyes came in and out of focus on someone's face.

Some woman's face.

This day is getting more and more peculiar. He raised his hands as best as he could, to try and ward her off, show he was unarmed, and invite her to steal whatever she wanted - not that they had much coin. Correction - not that HE had much coin. He had the boy carry it around.

He pointed to his throat and made negative gestures in a panicked, half dazed state.

He was lucky Demis was awake and looking for his friend in this moment.

Shout out to all those players I miss, and the new friends I make.
Quote
Like
Share

Elena
Advanced Member
Elena
Advanced Member
Joined: March 9th, 2011, 3:04 am

May 19th, 2018, 2:07 am #6

"What do you know about Belahith Uzark?" Reika asked gruffly, lifting the bardic sorcerer up the wall a bit by the collar of his tunic. She held it twisted in her fist, and tight around his neck.

She waited for a response, and when she didn't get it, she pulled him away from the wall and slammed him against it again. He didn't seem to be putting up much of a fight, which genuinely surprised her. He didn't seem like a weakling, and with magic at his disposal there was no reason for him not to have struck her back yet.

"Tell me what you know, sorcerer!" Her tone was accusatory and viscous, but quiet enough to not be heard from the bustling street. "It will be easier for you!"

He was barely reacting! Normally sorcerers were a fight for her. Even the cowardly ones at least addressed her, but he seemed to have been struck mute with fear. She hooked her hammer back onto her back and grasped his collar in both hands. With a grunt she pulled him up and flung him onto the alley floor.

"If you won't tell me, I will be forced to dispatch you, sorcerer."
Forum Admin
Quote
Like
Share

Oru
Advanced Member
Oru
Advanced Member
Joined: March 10th, 2011, 3:32 pm

May 19th, 2018, 2:39 am #7

Maverick was struck by two things, in his dazed state. The first was that his assailant was actually sort of attractive, and in any other situation, he imagined he would flirt with her in a pub somewhere.

The second thing was that the name was familiar, and he idn't like it, but attempting to gesticulate that to her was impossible.

The third thing, a recent sort of revelation, was that this woman was inhumanly strong and it made him extremely uncomfortable.

He pointed tohis own mouth with pleading eyes and kept shaking his head.

NO I don't know anything about him but conjecture, I've never met the man or woman or whatever, and NO I CAN'T SPEAK YOU IDIOT. His thought raced towards his mouth - but were stopped and silenced like a snuffed candle.

WHen she hefted him and then tossed him to the floor, he oofed wordnessly and blinked back another round of stars and lightning. He raised his hands over his head and tried to mouth the words instead.

I CANNOT SPEAK!

"Wai-!" A voice groaned from the door to the back of the inn. Demis, deaf as a post, although alarmingly not mute (what a painful sound it was,) leaped into the ally and scrambled to Maverick's side, raising his own hands to ward off the woman.

"Hee canth thpeak! Hee unnerthanns me!" The young boy struggled to say the words he could not hear.

It had been a curiosity to Maverick - if Demis had always been deaf or not. The boy had never said. Surely there had to be one point in time where he could hear - at least enough to remember roughly how to make the shapes in his mouth to form words.

Maverick nodded enthusiastically from the floor, grasping he back of Demis' shirt.

Shout out to all those players I miss, and the new friends I make.
Quote
Like
Share

Elena
Advanced Member
Elena
Advanced Member
Joined: March 9th, 2011, 3:04 am

May 19th, 2018, 3:17 am #8

Reika could not read lips, and she made no attempt to. She presumed that the man was attempting to say something to her, and raised a fist threateningly. She opened her mouth to tell him to spit it out already, but was interrupted by a strangled noise from the edge of the alley.

She dropped her guard a bit too easily, and looked up at the boy. "What?" She asked. She looked from the boy to the sorcerer at her feet and fell to press a knee to his chest, pushing the boy aside. She didn't look at Maverick, though, continuing to watch the boy.

He was young, she thought. He looked rough around the edges, like he'd been through a lot. And he had some sort of speech impediment. He seemed perfectly intelligent though. "How do you know this man?" She demanded, keeping the bardic sorcerer stuck to the ground with her own body weight.

It did make sense that the sorcerer couldn't speak. He hadn't even screamed yet. Had he somehow bewitched this boy in order to force him to do his bidding? Was he a slave or other kind of servant?

She narrowed her eyes and tried to sense any magic being acted upon the boy, but found none.
Forum Admin
Quote
Like
Share

Oru
Advanced Member
Oru
Advanced Member
Joined: March 10th, 2011, 3:32 pm

May 19th, 2018, 9:52 am #9

Demis was nothing if not pig headed. When he was shoved to the side, he wriggled closer again, brow furrowed in consternation. Then the furrowed brow softened and his chin started to tremble - but his eyes valiantly held back the tears he so wanted to spill. He touched Maverick's knee then his own chest. He could't hear but he could assume well enough. Maybe.

He held back a sigh at his next attempt to speak."I canth heer yoo." He tried to slowly pantomime that part. "Heee can chow me whaa yoo shay." He made several complicated hand signs, then he sort of elbowed Maverick.

Oh. Maverick turned Demis towards him and made some of their familiar hand signs. All he said, at least according to how Demis had been teaching him his own system, was "lets get he hell out of here." But hopefully it would be enough to stress that Maverick was the only poor sod who understood the lad.

Shout out to all those players I miss, and the new friends I make.
Quote
Like
Share

Elena
Advanced Member
Elena
Advanced Member
Joined: March 9th, 2011, 3:04 am

May 19th, 2018, 5:18 pm #10

Reika watched the boy return to the sorcerer's side with a scowl. She wanted to scold him- to demand if he understood how much danger he was in. The bard would not be the first magic user she had killed, though most of them had been more obviously evil.

But this boy looked as though he was about to cry. She blinked rapidly for a moment before he spoke. The boy was deaf? That explained the strained speech. When Maverick twisted under her to sign at the boy, she glared back at him.

They did seem to understand each other, even if she couldn't. She sucked in a deep breath and stood to take a quick step away from the two of them.

"Tell me what you know about Belahith Uzark," she repeated, reaching her arm around her back for the hammer that rested there. She did not draw it out, though, and waited impatiently for a translated response.

She couldn't just kill a man with his son watching. Not that they looked particularly related.
Forum Admin
Quote
Like
Share