A Wanderer's Romance: Game Thread (Closed)


New member
Sep 18, 2009
With each step from the graveyard, more and more of the beggar slipped away from Ryael's manner, replaced by something altogether... different, somehow more sincere, and infinitely more dangerous.

"Tachi, taaaaachi... a pity, a pity, names are such tricky things, and you've unfortunately unimaginative compatriots, but no matter, names are not but clothes of a sort, sometimes pretty, sometimes drab, but eternally... changeable," Ryael led his new found bit of hired muscle through a number of alleyways, quick eyes scanning each backyard as they passed until they lit upon something suitable for the odd lad's needs. A home as simple as the rest... but with laundry drying on the wire, and a cat lounging on the ledge, something glinting on its collar," Up until now you've called me Beggar, in but a moment you will call me Brother, and should our business go well... perhaps I will have another pretty name to offer. In the meantime, leave off 'Tachi' for awhile and put on 'Helper', who knows... you might even like the fit of it."

Without a further word, the boy that had been little more than a sniveling beggar mere minutes ago, hopped the fence into the favorable yard he'd spied. A long moment passed, ten minutes or so, with little more than the sounds of shuffling cloth, cracking wood, and one royally irritated cat. What hopped back over the fence robbed Tachi of his breath for a moment, a creature very different from the beggar boy. This new figure, this new thing, pressed something small, something that tinkled, into the mercenary's great, calloused paw.

Tachi blinked, "You must be kidding me."

The figure, that was once a beggar boy, always a musician, and now something quite different indeed, offered little more than a broad and toothy grin, and Tachi, wise in his own way, wondered if those teeth weren't a touch sharper than they ought to have been, and if that look was anything like the sort that passed between the cat and the canary.


"Hello, my friend, I am called Havlan. Welcome to my humble shop. Please, feel free to look around but try not to touch anything." a man said as she entered the shop. It was a remarkably fine shop; not at all what she was expecting. He could likely have used someone who could spell for his sign but that was hardly uncommon. Nazli had to wonder how the visiting merchant had fallen for the scheme if the shop could not spell.

"Good day sir. I am unfortunately here under bad tidings." she began, pulling out the Origin-Touched crystal in question. "A visiting merchant recently purchased this crystal from you under the pretense that it was Origin-Touched. Upon further inspection, this has proven false. Of course, I assume this was merely a simple mistake during the transaction common during large festivals. This merchant has asked me to simply request a refund of the purchase; a simple fix for such an accident. Of course, my employer - as a traveling merchant - has also had numerous experiences with "less-than-honest" traffickers and has hired me in the unlikely event that you are one such trafficker to defend his honor if need be." Nazli said the last item while indicating the presence of her scimitar with an subtle gesture.

Nazli choosing her words carefully to allow the man an easy way out that would leave his honor intact while also explaining the details of what would happen if he chose otherwise.

Unfortunately, Havlan proved reluctant He looked shaken, but resisted her attempts. "Why, not a single one of my goods are false. That merchant is just trying to turn my customers against me, of course." Nazli sighed and continued. "Then I am afraid we are at an impasse. In accordance with the ways of the spirits, I chall-" Nazli began to say, before another entered the shop.

A priest. Nazli bowed deeply to the religious figure; she was nothing if not reverent.

A tiny ringing, faint and very nearly evanescent, spilled into the open doorway of the crooked gem merchant's shop, soon followed by a remarkably ragged looking priest, and a large man wearing a suitably large sword and ringing a remarkably tiny bell. A small bell for a small presence, a lowly herald for a lowly man. The priest wore little more than a simple linen robe, his feet bare and blistered, grimy with dirt. While the band of white fabric wrapped about the man's face and head marked him as blind, and the simple wooden staff he leaned upon betrayed him as feeble, the man?s age was far more difficult to discern, the rest of his flesh, from ankles, to calves, to forearms to wrists, to hands, to throat and jaw, covered in an intricate pattern of symbols wrought in fresh red clay. An Acolyte of the Earth, more than a priest but less than a mage, one of any number of holy vagabonds cast up from a sect that held the Origins in the highest of esteem and cultivated an affinity for earth magic. While such mystics were not particularly common, they did have a knack for turning up at the oddest times, with either gospel on their lips, bowls seeking alms in their fingers, or hands out stretched to offer simple rituals to the faithful. A good and nutty bunch, Ryael was proud to count himself amongst their number for the next few hours. The priest's head quested to and fro as he paused within the doorway, cocking an ear to the side as though possessed of the uncanny hearing ability so often fallaciously attributed to the blind, "Eh? What is this rustling of mail and leather? What is this gentle wind I feel upon my cheeks? Does one of noble skill bow before this lowly one? Helper! Kind Friend! Leave off the chimes and serve as this one?s eyes."

A look of what might have been relief fluttered across the features of the man wielding the absurd little bell. He bent towards the stooped priest, muttered words meant for the acolyte?s ears alone.

The priest nodded slowly, a kindly enough smile spreading across his dusty features and cracking the clay there, "Ahhhh noble sister, bow not to this one, for are we not blessed kin upon the soil? Children of they who dwell above and within?"

Beneath the makeshift linen mask, bright eyes sparkled with a mirth the fueled the warmth of the priest?s toothy grin. Yes, the Orgins were most liberal with their blessings indeed, may they be praised for thin cloth and a cant easily enough duplicated by one with an ear for it.

The smile drained from the priest?s face as his blind head moved away from the direction of the swordswoman, cocking now in the direction of the merchant, ?Yet not all children upon the blessed soil are faithful? not all are true. It is said there is a man here? a seller of jewels, one who claims to peddle such relics as crystals touched by the Origins themselves! Surely one so blessed would tread wisely? and yet? and yet? it is said this man is false! Noble sister? lend me your ears and your knowing for a moment. Do you know of ought that would give credence to such accusations?"

Nazli nodded at the holy man, keeping her eyes low for though she walked the path set by the Spirits, few mortals had the strength of spirit to walk the path of the Origins themselves. As he questioned her, Nazli responded as honestly as she could with her limited knowledge. "I can your grace. A traveling merchant has hired me to seek honorable recompense for such a misdeed; in blood if not gold. I have such a suspected false crystal on me." she said, holding the stone toward the priest.

With gentle but calloused fingers, Tachi, now simply Helper, plucked the crystal from the swordswoman?s hand and pressed it into the blind priest?s grasp. Grimacing, the priest once more turned his focus onto the merchant, ? Woe unto the one who would let the lie corrupt the stone of his bones! Had there been but a single witness against you, merchant, miscreant, Havlan the purveyor of fraud, I would have sought to see your innocence. But look! You stand accused by not one, but two! For has not Seong, the worker of the Earth, a sorcerer of great power, laid such false works at your feet as well?! What would you say in your defense!?

?Lies!? spittle flew as the merchant spat out the word, complexion pinking as his indignation grew. He hastily drew a case from beneath his counter, opening it to reveal another crystal, the seeming twin of the one taken from the swordswoman, ?See here, there is no difference! My wares are genuine!?

The priest's grimace grew as he laid aside his staff for a moment, and plucked the supposedly true gem from its case. Grimy fingers closed over both stones, and the priest bowed his head in concentration as he sank to his knees. The words that wound up from him now were rattling, hollow things, as though spoken from a great distance, ?Noble sister, I beg you please, stay your blade for a time. I would not see an innocent man slandered, nor would I see his blood upon your faithful hands unduly. I will seek? the truth? of these stones? though it will take? some time? for my power is not great. Linger here, for the span of an hour, that your blade might halt this wayward man?s treachery, should he fall to such depravity. Helper! The chimes, please?.?

With that, the priests attentions seemed to flee the room entirely, his form swaying gently, a low chanting bubbling up from his lips in a rapid stream. Something within the fabric of the room began to change, to shift, in time with the chiming of the bell, the air growing thinner, more rarefied, the hairs of the body standing on end, all the subtle signs of some great power at work.

Power indeed.

Ryael did not need to weave a spell to feel the torrent of magical potential that lay sleeping just beneath the surface of the crystal plucked from the merchant?s case. The genuine article then, actual Origin touched crystal! Well, there was one mystery sorted? although another sort of problem remained. With each chime of the bell, the power in Ryael?s blood uncoiled, some terrible serpent now roused from its slumber and poised to strike. The lad, the beggar, the trickster, the priest, the musician, now turned his attentions in full, not to the stone, but the crooked merchant. The youth?s magic sank into the man, slowly but surely, a dagger of a different sort and thrice as painful, seeking the soft spots, not sinew or bladder, but rather? the fear. The squirming place in the merchant?s heart that feared his fellow man and feared the wroth of a scorned mage even more. A fire there, a fire there for Ryael to stoke, and stoke it he did, slowly, gently, from a spark, into a blaze.


New member
Jul 13, 2015
A look of what might have been relief fluttered across the features of the man wielding the absurd little bell. He bent towards the stooped priest, muttered words meant for the acolyte's ears alone.

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