Cleansing

To the west of Tenbia sits Browndale. This mysterious, wealthy, and snooty country is awash in arcane prowess and influence, possessing the strongest magics on Kaia.

Cleansing

Eiko
New Resident
Eiko
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Joined: 16 Feb 2017, 14:23

25 Feb 2017, 05:08 #1

[color=AA7402]The undisturbed, slender streets of Keian sent a cold shiver through Elieja’s spine as he searched for an empty building. The last two nights, the boy had slept without a roof above his head, and it had been raining for the past three days. His thoughts went to a beautiful jacket, that he had picked up from some old lady’s shack in the outskirts of Zete, just east of Keian. The drab set of pants he had picked up from a storefront a few hours back would have looked horrific next to the craftsmanship that jacket had contained. He pictured the soft fabric, soaked a dark red, and he could smell the sweet scent it had maintained. Elieja took a deep breath and pulled in the familiar scent of wet death that only grew stronger as he rounded another street corner in search of a vacant shelter.

The raindrops felt colder as they broke onto Elieja’s bare shoulders, and he knew it was getting later; so he would need to find shelter, or else another night in the rain might get him sick. This part of town appeared to be more occupied than most parts of the worn down town that Elieja had come to know. He began to wonder how there were so many occupied houses and yet not a soul was on the streets with him. A few more turns, down silent streets with lights in the windows, and his concern grew. And right on cue, a sudden sound froze the boy in his tracks; he looked all around him, trying to detect where the noise came from.

“Pst,” came a familiar voice that echoed down the narrow passageway. “El, what are you doing?”

Elieja backtracked, and took a moment to search the nooks and crannies of the old houses, until he finally spotted Nealt, crouching behind some broken boxes covered in torn sheets. He closed the distance between them swiftly, before he asked the old man why he was hiding.

Nealt took the boy by the upper arm and walked him forcibly back the way he came. Once they were back into familiar territory, Nealt let go of his arm and slowed his pace, speaking with a mixture of anger and distress, “What were you doing over there, Elieja?” Then his voice contained a heaviness, as if he hadn’t slept in ages. “Did you even know where you were?” He looked up at the boy’s face and saw that Elieja did not grasp the discretion, and emphasized his concern. “The Yeccha run these streets,” Nealt sighed. He began wishing the boy would learn some sense soon; for it had been some 14 years that Nealt had been taking care of Elieja, after the loss of the boy’s mother - to the very Yeccha that Elieja would have been introduced to, had he stayed around long enough.

The two of them walked together in a comfortable silence, both lost in thought, for just over an hour, through the winding streets of Keian. The rain finally trickled to a halt as they got closer to their home. Elieja looked at their surroundings with a new vision as he imagined what it would mean to leave the town he grew up in, and to venture out into the rest of the country. The crumbling, stained walls looked brighter than Elieja had remembered them to be; the houses looked taller, and the mundane sounds suddenly became more vibrant. He watched Nealt, the man who had raised him, and studied his motions; Nealt was old, as old as he had ever been. It occurred to Elieja, in that moment, that Nealt had always been an old man, that he had never seemed to age, that he looked the same age as he had looked when he first started taking care of a 4-year-old boy. This thought reminded Elieja that he had no amount of magic within himself.

Nealt had his mind on the effort and years he had offered up to take care of the boy he found all that time ago. He remembered how he hadn’t even thought twice about picking the child out of the crib and taking him home. He remembered how saddened he had been when he found Niala’s body, days later, in one of the very streets he had just retrieved Elieja from. He wondered how different it would be if he had not found the child; the possibilities seemed endless. As they reached the house, Nealt slowed to a stop a short distance from the entrance, wanting to share his thoughts with Elieja.

For the last segment of the walk, Elieja couldn’t look up at the old houses anymore, his thoughts had gone darker and the houses didn’t look taller or brighter. Instead, he watched Nealt’s feet; he noticed the old man favored his right side, putting more weight onto his left as he took each step. He could tell when they were getting closer to the house by watching the pace of Nealt. When the man stopped before going up to the building, Elieja looked up from the ground to his adoptive father and asked carefully, “Something is on your mind?”

The old man found himself smile as the boy pointed out his wants. He nodded and spoke his words carefully, softening them for Elieja, “I’ve had this on my mind for too long now, El.” Nealt paused, collecting his thoughts before he continued on, “There isn’t a day that goes by that I do not feel grateful and proud of the young man you have come to be. I know your mother would be even more proud than I am, of what you have become.”

The sudden gloomy change threw the boy off and his mood darkened further. Elieja dug the toe of his soft shoes into the decaying cinder blocks beneath their feet as he spoke. “I’ve never done a thing worth mentioning to anyone. I’ve never set a goal of my own. What do I have to offer to anyone?” He couldn’t bring himself to look at the never-changing face of the old man who had raised him, as images of his mother ran behind his eyes.

Nealt dismissed the gripes and tried to encourage Elieja. “You have yet to explore yourself, and you cannot say you’re a failure until you have failed at something. Your title is an empty slot right now, maybe now is the time to fill that slot with something of your own.” He had more to say, but wanted the boy to make the choice on his own.[/color]
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Avaya Trigger
Established Resident
Avaya Trigger
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Joined: 14 Jun 2008, 16:47

02 Mar 2017, 02:03 #2

Every person must, at some point, define what exists in this world as their god(ess). Some choose power, money, and sex, others choose their loved ones and their pursuit of what is "right." some have gone so far as to believe purely in their selves as the zenith and crux of society.

And some, truly, deeply, honestly, believe in nothing.

In a somewhat sour part of Brownsdale run primarily by the dominant gang, the Yecca, Avaya could be seen strolling through the city's street. With a somewhat slumped posture, his right hand in his pocket, and his left holding a small bag over his shoulder, the black armored merc walked with an almost lackadaisical stride. A small blade of wheat in his mouth, Avaya paid no concern with his surroundings. While this was gang owned territory, Avaya happened to be doing work for the very gang who're occupying the area. The Yeccha had hired his services to rough up some locals who believed they had a choice in the matter of paying up for "protection."

Avaya entered a somewhat shaggy building, making little noise, and drawing even less attention, Avaya slyly made his way through the seedy, somewhat-whore-house-looking front room and back towards security. He nodded to the door man and made his way in.

Once inside, there were several men twirling knives, picking their teeth, and generally looking quite rude. Typical gangster wannabes. Avaya strutted up to the table in the middle of the room and tossed the bag on the table, its contents of a few teeth and a medallion spilled out. A weasel looking man leaned forward from the dark and rummaged through the bag.

"So it's done, is it?" he chuckled.

"Yeah," Avaya spoke sharply.

"Where's the rest of my money?" The weasel laughed and motion one of his men towards Avaya.

"Pay the man." He spoke with a strange whistle, as his two front teeth were unusually large.

A larger man handed Avaya a decent sized bag. Avaya gripped it by the top and bounced it several times. Felt like it was all there. Then, without a word, Avaya turned and began to walk out of the room.

"HEY!" the weasel shreiked. Avaya turned back to him.

"Did the little bastard squeel?" He spoke with anticipation.

"Gonna' have to pay me more for that info." Avaya spoke with a shit eating grin on his face and began to leave once more. The weasel sat annoyed, but satisfied all the same.

Someways down the road, Avaya came upon another young man, dressed in brown merchants atire. Out of place in what seemed like a residential area, Avaya stood afront the man.

"Gilo, you look good." Avaya spoke with a subtle hint of sarcasm, as the man, though brown in complextion, looked quite pale.

"Yeah, yeah, you're real funny." Gilo had a small coughing fit.

"Well," Avaya spoke with half a sigh/

"Here's what you need. What else is going on around here?" Avaya handed him some of the coin he'd made earlier.

"Well, there're a handful of rumors going around. Senator's wife's been sleeping around, a lot of gang warfare in these parts, but nothing much more than small scuffles here and there. I got a tasty bit for you though." The man placed the coins in his pocket.

"And?" Avaya spoke with unyielding sarcasm.

"Well, Rumor has it that something's popped up in The Bath--"

"Yeah the fuck right." Avaya cut the man off sharply. "Give me a real tip, not some bullshit."

"It's legit man!" Gilo spoke urgently.

"Apparently, there was a girl asking a few questions about it, and only a few people have seen her since. Mighty suspicious if you ask me." Gilo raised his eye brows hoping to entice Avaya.

"Whatever. Even if it actually it out there, it's fools gold with no real gold involved, waste." Avaya scoffed.

"Fuck it. Thanks for nothing Gilo." Avaya began to walk off. But just before he did, he turned his head slightly and caught glimpse of a young man crouched down in an allyway next to an older man. The two were within earshot of Avaya and his collegue, probably able to hear most if not all their conversation. Avaya stopped and staired at them for just a moment, then turned and slowly began to walk off.
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Eiko
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Eiko
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Joined: 16 Feb 2017, 14:23

15 Mar 2017, 01:39 #3

[color=AA7402]Elieja thought for a long while, as he realized that Nealt - the man who had raised him since he was a baby - wanted him to leave. Questions ran through his mind as he studied the old man’s features. Was the boy a nuisance now? Did Nealt no longer like him? His doubts collected, one on top of the other, until Elieja got his senses back together and reassured himself he was being irrational. Nealt would never do anything to hurt his boy; so he had a reason for wanting him to go out and do things on his own.

He listened to Nealt’s words again, telling him to learn for himself who he is and what he has to offer, and he tried to think of what he would want to do. He wanted to do something that would help prove his worth, something that would give him stories to tell of, something grand.

“I haven’t thought about what I want.” Elieja heard himself say to Nealt. He had always followed Nealt’s rules and suggestions and did almost anything the man asked of him.

Nealt shook his head with a subtle sigh as he replied to Elieja’s unhelpfulness. “Where did your mischevious ways run off to, boy?” His hand cupped the boy’s shoulder. “What’s gotten into you lately, huh?”

Elieja hung his head low as he realized that Nealt was right, he had been distracted lately, he hadn’t been as focused on creating the mayhem that usually followed in his wake; for he had lost his motivation.

“I think you’re losing your adventure, boy. What’s making you so soft, Elieja? It does not suit you.”

“It’s,” Elieja started, the heaviness of the word he wished to speak, almost too much. He managed to speak her name to his father-figure, admitting his own self-defeat. “It’s Tiry.”

Nealt knew the boy had always been fond of the girl, and the two would cross paths again. Nealt knew the girl cared for Elieja, for she went off in search of something to cure Elieja’s incompetence. Nealt shook his head in a disappointing sigh, squeezing Elieja’s shoulder before dropping his hand. “She been gone less than two fortnights now, she hasn’t even found the time to get into any trouble yet.”

Nealt heard the conversation before Elieja’s ears registered the sound of the voices. The boy did not hear the finish of Nealt’s sentence as his attention had been taken by a familiar name. The two met eyes as Elieja spoke in a forced whisper to Nealt. “Did I just hear him say ‘The Bath’? Nealt, that’s where she was heading!” The rest of the conversation to be heard was lost to the boy as he imagined himself going after Tiry.

He saw images of traveling the Korina Straight in a majestic boat, floating across the waterway with no sails. He saw bits and pieces of traces of Tiry, place after place, as he searched for her. The fantasy continued longer than he meant it to and, after the grand reunion and discovering such unbelievable amazements at The Bath, Elieja came to and realized the young man cloaked in brown was long gone and vanished by then.

Nealt had been watching the last of the exchange with a discreteness as Elieja had gotten lost to his fantasy. He had only started spreading the rumors two nights before and he had not imagined it would come back to the boy this soon. He waited eagerly for it to click with Elieja, and when the boy snapped back to reality, Nealt pointed to the man still within sight.

“I have to go find her, Nealt. This can’t be a coincidence!” Elieja said after he spotted his target. Nealt encouraged him and gave him a bag of things he would need after they hugged each other.

“Go find her, boy. You’ll know where to find me, if you ever need to,” Nealt assured him as the boy took his first steps after the man.

Elieja followed after the man, resisting a full-out run to avoid any extra attention. The man walked slow, compared to Elieja’s faster pace, so he slowed down and took a little time to observe the situation; he wasn’t entirely sure how to approach this stranger. Keeping an eye on the man, Elieja slowed even more and started rummaging through the pack that Nealt handed him before he left. His eyes popped open when he saw the size of the coin pouch that Nealt put in the pack.

The boy stopped dead in his tracks and peaked inside the pouch and almost jumped for joy; his prayers were answered. Nealt had separated out a percentage of the income Elieja had made ever since he was little and put it aside to give to the boy when he was ready. The note, that Nealt had left, told him how he had done this for both Tiry and Frest when they arrived and when they left. This money, Elieja thought, should easily sway the stranger to help him find his way to The Bath, and to Tiry.

Suddenly, in a panic, the boy realized he had lost track of the man now. He had stopped when he saw the purse, and didn’t see which way the stranger went. Moving forward and quickly checking in the crevices (in case he was hiding), Elieja searched for him again, mostly guessing where he could have gone. Not far down the road, the boy spotted him, still strolling along. Elieja walked along the same path, his pace just faster, to catch up carefully. He walked next to the man for a few steps before he cleared his throat and spoke to the stranger with a cautious voice.

“Excuse me. I,” Elieja paused for a breath, “I briefly overheard the name of a place I am trying to find information on. I heard mention of The Bath. I heard someone tell you about it.” He touched the coin purse, letting a few coins clank into each other. “I’m trying to get there.” The more he spoke, the more desperate he felt. “Can you help me?”[/color]
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Avaya Trigger
Established Resident
Avaya Trigger
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Joined: 14 Jun 2008, 16:47

22 Mar 2017, 23:00 #4

"Fuck."

Avaya thought to himself as he leisurely wandered through the city streets, both his hands in his pockets, with a slight forward hunch, and a swagger to his walk, he meandered along.

"Goddamn Gilo didn't have shit today... Whatever, got enough to get plastered I guess." He stared off into the distance as he continued his stroll, now passing people as he'd come closer to a business sector of the city. Avaya wandered from place to place, sorting through wares, briefly haggling with merchants, and hamfistedly flirting with some of the working women in the area. A lady of the night is still a lady after all.

Avaya came upon a merchant along the side of the street who was selling some strange form of booze.

"Hey, YOU!" The beer bellied, some what sweaty, man yelled out to get his attention.

"Yes you, with the silver hair!" Avaya paused, stared at the moment, and began to walk off once more.

"HEY! I've got quite a fine new batch of rare alcohol for a sophisticated man such as yourself!" Avaya paused once more. He looked up into the cloudy sky once more, and decided to see what the deal was.

"Yes, yes, my boy! Come see!" The man continued to shout.

"I'm not your fuckin' boy." Avaya barked back at the man as he came close.

"So sorry. Very sorry. Buuuuuuut, this looks like it's perfect for you. You like to, uh, party, correct?" The man held a an oddly shaped bottle, somewhat resembling what Avaya thought was a flower.

"I do..." Avaya Muttered quietly.

"Well, let me tell you. This fine beverage WIll make you, uh, see your dreams!" the man had a half baked smile on his face. Avaya stared at the bottle for a moment, and looked up at the man.

"Hm, sounds fun." Scoffing haphazardly at the man.

"I'll take it." Avaya dropped a few coins in the mans hand and took the bottle. He began to stare at the strange almost orange colored liquid in a bottle that began to look less and less like a flower and more and more like--

"Excuse me. I," words broke Avayas concentration. He turned, looked up, and looked into the eyes of a young man who seemed to be vying for his attention. The young man, almost still a boy, continued on about overhearing his conversation with Gilo, and for just a moment was about to turn and ignore him, till he mentioned the Bath. Avaya burst into a hardy laugh for just a moment.

"What's a boy like you looking for in The Bath?" He scoffed. He stared at the boy once more only to realize he was serious. He looked down at the bag of coins he had in his hand, and slowly back up to his face.

"I can get you there, but its gonna' cost you. Probably everything in that bag." He placed the bottle in the bag he himself had for his coin.

"And this is going to be goddamn dangerous, ya might die..." Avaya thought to himself that this might be an opportunity to boost his reputation in the area.

"But I'll keep you alive. But if we find treasure, I want in on it. Got it?"
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Eiko
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Eiko
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Joined: 16 Feb 2017, 14:23

26 Apr 2017, 16:43 #5

[color=aa7402]Brushing off his immediate doubts and all thoughts of this man refusing the help, Elieja stood his ground and broadened his shoulders to give himself a better look of self-confidence. He didn’t want to give up all his coin, that he had earned from working with Nealt, to this stranger who could just as easily take the money and run. Elieja did not have such an interest in finding the wonders lying at the bottom of the waters, as much as he was looking to find his childhood friend, Tiry. If he wanted to keep most of his coin, he would have to convince this stranger that their destination would give him more than enough to satisfy.

Tiry had only spoken twice before of the place she went to find. The first time she had mentioned it, Elieja recalled, she had barely spoken of it, save for an interest in the place. It was her second mention of The Bath that Tiry spoke of wonders that only a true adventurer could find within the water’s depths. She had spoken with such passion and elation that his doubts of the absurd rumors were quickly dismissed and he soon had images of the endless treasures to find there.

“Have you not heard of the wonders that you can find at The Bath? ‘If we find treasure…’” He scoffed, mocking the question. “Of course we’ll be finding treasure, the only question is what do you consider treasure?” Elieja took a few steps around the stranger, to help him think, as he remembered the things Tiry had said. “Are you a good swimmer? I heard of a river that begins under the water and comes up in some underground ancient tomb that can’t be accessed by land. Can’t you imagine who (or what) would be buried in such a closed off place?” He paused for a slight effect. “Or you could go for a dive to the bottom and see the flawlessly preserved ancient tree grove and see if their branches have caught anything worth our while in their wrinkles.”

Elieja paused to look up to the sky, to admire it for it what it was, before he left this town. “I understand it will be dangerous, and that death is something that both of us will have to face at some point.” His gaze came back down and stopped on the stranger. “Get me there and I can promise that you will be satisfied by the end of it.” His feet shuffled on the ground as he began to wonder where to start.[/color]
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