The Ashlanders - Chapter 6: The Blind Man's Last Gambit (Closed, Started)

ProtoChimp

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"Hm? Oh, yeah, sure." Said Warren as he took the cookie and began eating around the edges. He was doing that thing again where he zones out and doesn't pay attention to whoever's in the room. Dick. Still, Aesop wasn't in the position to call anyone a dick. Evidently he was the biggest dick in the room, ass stuck in a big wodden box and all. Suddenly Warren's foot came crashing through the side.

"THE FUCK MAN???"

Ignoring Aesop, Warren continue "Yep, fragile as shit. Take my hand." He offered it to Aesop, making the man be thankful that he wasn't pulling any of his usual crazy shit. Aesop swore he could feel splinters.
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Heath stayed silent as a ghost throughout the entire meeting. He was wearing clothes so boring he was totally indistinguishable from the other hunters. He tried to keep subtle, not making his presence known with overblown dramatics, but not hiding his face under his hat either. People could see him, but no one paid him any mind. Perhaps one with a keen eye, but even then Heath didn't seem any different than any other Bounty Hunter in the room. Boring and plain, yet outlandish and cocky was the attitude on display, just like most of the others. He left the estate and made his way to his motorbike and set on his way back to Father. He should know all.

Meanwhile Austin was leaning on the outside wall of the RV strumming his guitar once again. His chlidren were scrambled about, some inside taking maintenance of the weapons, some out in the stores checking out some gear, and the littlest ones playing in the sand. One of the elder ones, a teenager came out of a store carrying some spare tires when the motorbike came trailing down the road, kicking up dust in a cloud that went so high it hung in the air making passers by cough. The bike stopped by the RV where Heath got off and made his way to Austin.

Austin smiled in surprise as he saw him and slung his guitar over his back. "Heath?"

"Father," said the man as they embraced each other in a hug.

"How are you my son? You're as big as your old man now," chuckled the robed leader.

"Thank you father but, still not as strong," smiled Heath.

"Nobody is son. Nobody is." He lead the man inside and they sat down on a nearby table, the children inside waving hello to Heath. Austin continued once they were sat, "So tell me son, what brings you all the way out here?"

"I heard from one of my sisters that you were coming here. She called me but she couldn't be here to greet you, she was apparently arrested for killing another pretender." Said Heath as he rested his hat on the table.

"Good girl, good girl. I'll be sure to send someone to free her from this injustice. But you still haven't told me why you came, although I much enjoy your company son."

"Well, I heard of something very intersting. I was looking for some work to support my little brothers up in the city-" he was swiftly cut off by the 'father'.

"Wait you left them there alone!" Roared Austin, causing the other young'uns in the RV to panic.

"No, no of course not, I'm sorry I should have said they are with one of the eldest. His name is Victor do you remember? He's gotten quite strong now." Heath had some fear in his voice as he spoke.

"Ah," sighed Austin, "Victor yes, ginger?" Heath nodded in response. "Ah I see, good good. Excellent we all need to be strong. Anyway you were looking for work?"

"Yes and the Lord Dio Basilio has apparently ran into trouble."

There was silence for a moment as Austin twiddled his thumbs. "Another pretender I see."

"Yes..." said Heath again, hoping he had masked his fear.

"And..." Silence for at least the better part of an excruciatingly long minute. "Why, should we concern ourselves with their matters when all they serve to do is TAUNT ME!" He slammed his fist down upon the table as the others stood to leave. "No no. Stay. Kids sit down right now." They did as they were told and awkwardly sat down as he turned his attention back to Heath. "Tell me son."

Mustering up his courage Heath said with little hesitation, "Father, we can use him. He is in need and will pay handsomely. We can do the job, take his money, and then kill him and any other pretenders who dare to live. With enough of us here we could take his whole estate father. And believe me, there were many pretenders in that house."

Austin thought for a moment. More than a moment. It felt like an eternity to the young Heath, until his father reached over and placed the hat atop his son's head. "Good job son. Good job." Heath smiled proudly, so happy to please his father, it was like no other feeling in the world. It overwhelmed him, it consumed him, it made him feel like his life was totally worthless and corrupt up until this point. "Now, tell me of his... 'plight'." Austin spat out the last word.

"Right..." Heath went on to tell the tale of the Iron Maidens and how they had snatched his betrothed.

"The Iron Maidens? They have a ship, and they spend a large amount of time in the air. It would be difficult to get on. We would have to get them during a stop or them stealing or something, and even then the others would probably keep flying. Does he want just the Captain or the whole crew?"

"He wants them all to pay, but the captain especially."

"And he doesn't care about the wife?"

"No and, well she is young father. I think we should save our sister."

"I see, I'm proud of you Heath. You've done a lot of good for our family my son. Send out some feelers, find out any and all information that we can. I want that crew, I want to kill the Pretender Basilio and... I want that ship."
 

Dogmatic99

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"Thy offer is generous, but I must decline. I promised to watch and protect Lady Maribel and I shall see it to the end. Tis a noble's honor to keep her word."

"That is selfless of you." Florian said, taking his own seat and dragging it over to join the group. "But you may not know what you're getting yourself into." She was opting to stay right? Florin had to really try and understand this woman. He hadn't had to contend with the language barrier for a while, yet another thing he was out of practice with. It must have been a dialect from the deep south cus lord knows Florian couldn't place it. Nobles were strange creatures sometimes.

"You don't want to rush into anything too fast."

Seriously, if this Dio lived up to what the captain had told him then a storm was headed there way and extra civillians getting mixed up in the cross fire was something to be avoided at all cost.
 

Fappy

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Sprout listened carefully to what Ruffles had to say. If there was one thing he could count on Ruffles for, it was moral support.

"... You're fifteen. A kid, at least by comparison. Why should anybody respect you? But hey, that's only because you ain't had time to actually do shit worth respecting."

After taking a quick swig of the beverage passed to him, Sprout thought on that point. He really hadn't done anything truly remarkable. Not yet.

"... You walk into a group of teenagers, and you're on a god damn bandit crew, the pioneering sky pirates of The Rock, you're easily the most badass guy there."

Sprout liked the sound of that. He made a good point. He would be the ultimate badass to anyone he met his age. He nodded to himself.

I'll take som' kid under my wing an' show 'im the ropes...

"... Look where she is now, man."

That really did explain a lot. Sprout had always assumed that Lilith always picked on him and spent so much time with him because she may have shared the same feelings he did. Ruffles made everything far more clear. She was just like him once.

Sprout finished his soda and wiped his lips with the sleeve of his jacket, "Thanks, man. I think I git'it now." Staring down at the bottle in his hands, he thought to himself for awhile before looking back up at Ruffles. "What was yer childhood like? Was yer ma' as crazy as mine?" Sprout laughed.

**********************************************************************************************************************************************************

Pixie studied Josephine as she considered the offer. She already knew her answer, but she wasn't completely sure how she would arrive at it. What kind of conviction drove this woman to this degree of selflessness? What reason had she to throw her freedom away for the sake of another? These were the questions Pixie was more interested in having answered.

"Thy offer is generous, but I must decline. I promised to watch and protect Lady Maribel and I shall see it to the end. Tis a noble's honor to keep her word."

Noble honor? No, noble honor was a sham. There was no such thing. However, that isn't to say this woman could not simply stand up on her own merits. Honor she alone possesses.

Elizabeth tugged on Josephine's arm, "No, Milady! Please! I cannot ask this of you!"

"She's her own woman, girl." Pixie interjected, a wide grin painted across her face. There was something different about her smile this time. Her eyes remained on Josephine as if she was... admiring her? The Great Bandit Queen, notorious for her vendetta against the nobility, praising a noble? What sense did that make?!

And why did Pixie keep calling her "girl"?!

"You don't want to rush into anything too fast."

Pixie looked to Florian and gave him a little push on the shoulder, "Aw, come'on now Father! Why ya' gotta go'n put tha' fear o' God in 'er like that, eh?" Looking back at Josephine, Pixie continued off of Florian's point. "He's right though, Milady. This' a dangerous prospect n' I can't promise yer safety if ya' stay here. I reckon we've got 'erselves more enemies than any other crew on the Rock. But..."

Pixie got to her feet and stood before Josephine. She came in close, less than a meter from the noblewoman but she stood her ground, staring into Pixie's one good eye, "I reckon ya' got what it takes, M'lady." She stared at her a moment longer before continuing. "Ya' know, ya' kind'a remind me of m'self in a way. An' I mean that in the most complimentary way possible."

Elizabeth scowled at Pixie from Josephine's side, "She's nothing like you. She has honor."

"I 'spose yer right. I don' have any honor nor can I be counted on to keep'a promise. That's why I'm leave'n yer protection up to her." Pixie smiled at Josephine. "Whadda ya' say?"
 

The Funslinger

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"What was yer childhood like? Was yer ma' as crazy as mine?"

Ruffles blinked. "I don't know. She died just after I was born. I grew up in the shanties in Zephyr, and I was the eighth kid in the family. My dad worked as a laborer all the time to make ends meet, so my grandma took care of us." He gave a small laugh. "I shit you not, a scarier woman I have never met. Not even the Captain." He supposed he should answer the first question. "So we all did a bit of work from a young age, and one day I find this electric thermometer on the ground that's busted. It was the wiring, and once I pried the back off and spent a couple days looking at it, I fixed it up. My dad found out and set me up fixing people's gadgets and crap for carbon. So then this guy comes along, real suave in a three piece suit, says he's been sent by some Noble family and starts asking me questions with this pocket watch. Says I have an IQ of a hundred and sixty two, whatever that is. Apparently it means I'm a genius or something."

He coughed, not liking the praise of the idea. He was spilling a lot, but he'd started and couldn't shut up. "So I have people watching me for a while, doing my job and playing with my brothers and sisters and friends. They told my dad I was "too erratic to be taken into service" or something and he got real mad at me, saying I fucked up our one chance to get out the gutter, saying I killed mom, and he hit me. I ran off, and... yeah, I was homeless for a while. And I'd always been interested in ships, and Zephyr's where they're all built. So eventually I find this guy, this big shipwright. Big guy with a big red beard. He keeps trying to shoo me, but I kept coming back to the dry dock and shit, watching. I start handing him shit whenever one of his crew isn't on hand and after a few weeks he stops sending me away. Started teaching me everything he knew. I stopped sleeping rough and got a bed in the workman's bunkhouse. I'd go back to see my family. My dad died a couple years after in a work accident, but I stayed close to everyone else. A few years later, I bumped into Pixie back when all this was kicking off. I still send a little carbon back to grandma whenever I get the chance."
 

Terratina.

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The man nodded. After Maria helped herself up, she helped the somewhat lucky stranger up and dusted him down. Well, that was just an excuse to give the guy a look over. He was a wiry sort, and while his mask hid the lower half of his face, some stubble could be seen. His face was a mess, scorched an ugly shade of red by the sun, and had been given a beating or three: broken nose, a black eye and some minor cuts on the forehead. Hell, the whole of him was a mess: ripped jeans, torn jacket, and a sweat-soaked vest. Only his goggles, his belt and his fingerless gloves seemed to be undamaged. Nevertheless, mess or not, he was her patient now. Maria dragged him over to the moped, gave him some water and started up the engine.

"Y.. Yeah. 'S Micky." He managed to cough out after having a sip.

"Well then Micks, let's go!" Maria chortled in response.

Seeing as Micky needed it more than her, Maria took off her labcoat and threw it at him. Micky put it on, and as soon as he was finished, Maria put her foot down on the accelerator. They blasted off at the mighty speed of about 20 mph. Maria sighed. They had to get to a settlement soon, otherwise Micky would have to be put back in the dirt. It all came down to dirt didn't it? Those little blocks of hyper-dense dirt seemed to cause all sorts of trouble. People would kill, main, rape and do all sorts of nasty things just to get their hands on one little bit. At least she helped people! Maria stole a glance of her passenger and wondered what sort of life he had before he pissed all over it. Judging by the scraggly remains of a scarf that clung around his neck, it wasn't a very wholesome one...
 

Evrant-Knight

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Turns out finding a member of one of the most notorious crime families was harder than it looked, she visited various bars and other establishments were one might find such a person, but was having next to no luck for the last half an hour. Deciding she needed to take a break, Viola stopped at the next bar she could find, one that called itself The Militiaman's Tavern.

Upon entering she could see why it was called that, as many of the bar's patrons were mercenary looking types. But as she approached the counter, something caught her attention in the corner of her eye. It was a lone man in a black business suit nursing a drink; at first it seemed a little out of place, but then as she scanned the gentleman further, she noticed a red bandanna with what looked like a lizard on it.

'Well, guess I picked the right place then.' Viola said to herself with a smile as she took a seat next to the suit and ordered herself a drink, nothing alcoholic of course for the moment, needed to keep her aim straight.

"So, how's the business holding up?" Viola asked in a manner that hopefully wouldn't draw attention to herself.
 

Ruedyn

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Warren grabbed his comrade's wrist, and quickly tugged, ripping him free of his ass-prison. It was pretty much as easy as he thought it was, and Warren was even considerate enough to try and be gentle. A gift, because of the cookie. When he was up, Warren even brushed some dust off his shoulders for him.

"I feel like you could've done that yourself." Warren said, grinning his red grin. It still hurt a bit, and Warren found himself feeling his scars again. He brought his hand back down, and stopped grinning so widely.
 

ProtoChimp

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With a quick tug Warren pulled Aesop free from the wooden imprisonment. Warren tried to be gentle, which Aesop was thankful for, but that didn't stop his ass from bleeding upon exit. He yelped as he stood, his body completely frozen from the pain in such an uncomfortable place-not as bad as being shot but... well you try getting splinters in your ass cheeks and see how you feel. Warren even dusted off his shoulders for him. "I feel like you could've done that yourself." Warren grinned, actually grinning. Still kinda creeped Aesop out but he had no right to be judgemental of the man who just saved his ass, in a rather literal sense.

Aesop's hand hung in the same position, outward even as Warren put his down. "I think I need a change of pants... um, because of blood not..." Aesop trailed off as his mind couldn't help but focus on the pain. He liked these pants too. He hoped the crates would have some extra pants as well as some suave noble clothes, despite his surplus of vests and waistcoats he was severely lacking in pants.
 

The Funslinger

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"So, how's the business holding up?"

Raymond sipped at his drink, and glanced at the woman who had invaded his quiet. This line of work, you often got floozies throwing themselves at you for a taste of the power connection to Wilkes-Vines came with. Who he saw dispelled that line of thought though. The Gunslinger. Quite a reputation. But you didn't make it in the Wilkes-Vines unless you could stay stoic. He didn't react. He just let her wait as he idly finished his drink.

After a couple of minutes, he drained it, and slapped the bar for another, which came sliding down towards him almost comically instantly. He picked it up demurely and slowly moved it to his lips, smiling. Then he set it down. "Whadda ya want?"
 

Fappy

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There was nothing Sprout enjoyed more about his fellow Maidens than the tales they told. Granted, this one was far more mundane than those Ruffles was known for, but learning such personal information was interesting in its own right. It wasn't often Maidens were so quick to divulge their pasts, in fact Sprout felt as if he may have asked about this before but hadn't received an answer. Ruffles was like an older brother to him. He couldn't imagine there being anything he wouldn't tell him.

A few years later, I bumped into Pixie back when all this was kicking off. I still send a little carbon back to grandma whenever I get the chance."

Once Ruffles had finished his tale Sprout giggled, "Reckon I'll get ta' meet yer granny one of these days?" For whatever reason it was hard for him to imagine Ruffles' grandmother looking like anything but an old lady version of Ruffles. Instead of wearing a black welding apron she'd be wearing a frilly, white cooking apron. Sprout laughed to himself. "Sorry ta' hear 'bout yer pa', though. I reckon the closest thin' I ever had to a father was Bennie. You remember 'Rocksteady', dontcha?"

Sprout's eyes wandered as he thought to himself out-loud, "Wonder what he's been doin' these days..."

******************************************************************************************************************************************************

Business had been slower than usual. You'd think all sorts of opportunities would be cropping up, what with the train heist and all, but it didn't seem to have done a damn thing. Everyone must have been too damn scared to do anything now that ol' Dio was out for blood. Having your fiancee snatched away like that would have that effect on any man, but there was a whole different story behind Lord Basilio's rage.

Fucking hell girl, what're you getting yourself into this time?

Bennie put the paper back down on the bar and lit up another cigarette, "Want another round, Bennie?"

The hulking black man shook his head in protest and took a long drag, "Sorry, boss. Think it's a little too early to be knockn' them back, don't you think?"

"You know how it is 'round here. People do what they do. Booze's about the only thing in this shithole keepn' people from blastn' each other's brains out."

"Ain't that a shame."

After the bartender wandered off to help another customer Bennie continued looking over the front page of the paper once more. He focused on the phrase "unknown bandits", referring to those responsible for the heist. Bennie knew better. It'd only taken him the first two sentences of the article to figure out Pixie and her Maidens were behind it, "Crazy *****."

"Yeah, yeah... okay, but seriously we's gonna need more guys if we're gonna take down the Maiden! Basilio's pay'n out his ass fer this job! He wants the Queen *****'s head!"

So Dio's hired bounty hunters to take her out? Bennie grunted and stood up. Three men seated at a table not too far from him had been discussing the contract they'd made with Dio. Something Bennie was very interested in. Business had been slow, after all.

He took a few steps towards their table and stood behind a vacant chair. The trio had ceased their conversation after his first step. They exchanged a few glances, their hands hovering over their sidearms. They knew who he was.

After several moments one of them spoke up, "Whadda you want?"

Bennie smirked and took a seat, "Relax, boys. I just want to talk." They exchanged glances once more and remained poised to attack. "Tell me about this contract you gentleman made. You planning to take out the Maiden?"

"Fuck! He's gonna warn the *****! Take 'im out boys!" Before either of the three could draw, Bennie fired his revolver from the hip at the man directly across from him. Momentarily shocked to see their comrade fall so fast, Bennie took this opportunity to flip the table over and shoot the second man in the chest before he could level his weapon. The third man stood up from his seat to get a shot on Bennie from behind the table, but took too long to get a bead on him. Before he knew it Bennie had turned faster than any man his size has any right being, embedding his fist in the man's face and sending a stray bullet flying off into the rafters.

By this point most of the bar had cleared out and the only noise that could be heard were the wails of the man Bennie had pinned under him. Bennie had disarmed him and proceeded the knock a few teeth out until the man was ready to speak up, "F-fuck! G-get off me! I'll fuckn' tell you whatever you want, man! Fuck!" This guy would be pretty useless. If these guys were such chumps there was no way they'd have any useful intel. They'd never make it within one-thousand miles of the Maiden.

Bennie punched him one last time and then, grabbing his collar, he pulled the man in close. Calmly, he spoke to the man, "Who else did Dio hire for this job?"

Shivering in terror and pain the man frantically looked around the room, too scared to look Bennie in the eyes despite them being hidden behind the dark lenses of his sunglasses, "F-fuck, I dunno, I-I--" His train of thought came to a sudden halt as his eyes focused on something behind Bennie. "H-him! HE WAS FUCK'N THERE TOO!"

Bennie looked over his shoulder to see an albino man sitting at a table in the corner of the tavern. It didn't look as if the commotion had stirred him. Bennie smiled and turned his attention back at the man at his mercy, "Thanks." After a swift headbutt, Bennie dropped the unconscious man like a sack of meat and wandered over to the albino. Like he had before, Bennie stood by a vacant chair and asked him, "Mind if I take a seat?"

Name: Bennie "Rocksteady" Carmine
Age: 33
Sex: Male
Profession: Hired Gun, he'll take just about any job. He's known for his professional nature and sharp intellect. Formally a bandit and a member of the Iron Maiden.

Appearance: Of African descent, Bennie is a hulk of a man that stands at six-in-a-half feet tall and built like a brick house. If you were to focus on his body alone, however, you'd be doing the man a disservice. His intellect is painted on his face so to speak, as he maintains a calm, stoic expression in the most tense of circumstances. His head is kept shaven, but he usually sports closely shaven facial hair up to his temples with a more pronounced goatee. He has cold, black eyes that are more often than not concealed by his sleek, black sunglasses.

To maintain his professional imagine he usually wears an un-tucked, blue dress shirt (he often rolls up the sleeves), a white undershirt, an antique watch, jeans and some very expensive brown, leather shoes. Considering the size of his feet he particular about his shoes. He needs something that will look professional, but offer the comfort and flexibility he needs for his job. They are easily more expensive than anything else he owns, including his weapons.

His weapon of choice is his trust old tactical shotgun, but he more often than not falls back on his revolver: a chrome S&W M29. It was his father's gun and his father's before that. When neither weapon is available his fists are usually just as frightening.

He has a few ear piercing, but other than that the only distinguishing mark on his body is a small tattoo of a pixie on his shoulder. Something left over from a past life.

Personality: Bennie's a quiet guy but is easily to get along with. He won't give you shit or bust your balls unless he's got a good reason to, and is always willing to do someone a favor given they'd be willing to help him in kind. He's got a subtle and dry sense of humor that manages to creep under one too many radars, but that's fine with him. As long as he thought it was funny it was worth saying.

Despite his easygoing nature he's fairly controlling. Bennie doesn't like going into anything blind and will usually demand to know the circumstances of a job before taking it. That isn't to say he would pry into anything he doesn't need to know about. As long as he is working with all the facts that matter he'll be a happy camper. This personality quirk also made its way into his dealing with the Maiden back in the day and was often a source of friction between him and its captain, Pixie.

As an avid reader of old literature, Bennie's very insightful and people often times find themselves drawn to him. He's been described as a gentle giant, but anyone who's seen his badside know otherwise.

Biography: Bennie grew up as a member of an old bandit family that's long since faded away. He would say they died out because his family clung to the old way of things. The Carmines came from an age when bandits knew a thing called honor. When the game the nobles played was far more subtle. Those times ended long ago, however.

Though his upbringing had its fair share of violence and debauchery, Bennie was well educated and well-rounded, for the most part. Despite being raised primarily by his father due to the death of his mother when he was very young, he had no lack of female influence as he grew up around many women of all ages and quickly learned their way of things. Men would often say there wasn't another bandit alive that knew the workings of a woman's mind and body as well as Bennie. They'd be right.

When he came of age to replace his father as head of the family he was denied the position. By that point they'd lost too many battles and hadn't evolved like the rest of the families. They'd fallen too far behind and had lost too many men to continue on. His father didn't want Bennie to inherit the barren husk that remained and opted to take his own life while he was still the acting leader, telling Bennie to find his own way before he ended it. The Carmine family dissolved after that and Bennie, with a refined skill-set but nowhere to exercise his craft, wandered the ashlands until a certain someone caught his eye.

It is said that Bennie is the only man on the Rock to not only feast on the bounty that was Pixie's body, but to also conquer her heart. He joined the Maiden during its heyday, back when Cranston was still babysitting Sprout and Pixie was still biting off more than she could chew. He was always at Pixie's side, her right-hand man so to speak. He treated Sprout like his own son during the seven years he spent aboard the ship and the two became extremely close.

Unfortunately, during a high risk score he and Pixie had a disagreement that costed more than a few lives. After such a disastrous failure the two parted ways. It was clear any idea of them ever becoming a true family was a farce, not with the way they lived their lives. At any moment they could take a bullet in the back of the head and neither one of them wanted to be there when that happened.

Since then Bennie's been operating solo all over the ashlands. He'll take just about any job that pays enough. He's known for being punctual, thorough, easy to work with and a cowboy between the sheets.
 

Evrant-Knight

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The guy was certainly playing his part well, unlike other gangsters she had the misfortune of dealing with, he took his time, waiting for the right moment, occasionally glancing at Viola; no doubt to size her up. He downed his first drink before slamming the bar for another, not subtle, but it got the job done, and sure enough, more of the same came his way. He took the drink to his lips in an unassuming manner, and slowly took sips from it, all the while smiling. "Whadda ya want?" He asked in a rather overbearing manner.

"Nothing much, just a simple business proposition that I'd like to make with someone." After she had spoke, her drank arrived in front of her. Viola took a few small sips, and set it back down, waiting for the man to respond.
 

The Funslinger

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"Nothing much, just a simple business proposition that I'd like to make with someone."

Raymond sipped his drink again before answering. "Unless said proposition involves you and I getting heinous in the restroom of this shit hole, you're going to have to work very hard to interest me."
 

Ruedyn

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Warren

"I think I need a change of pants... um, because of blood not..."

"Mhmm. I'm just going to go find something else to do. Another time." Warren gave a lazy wave goodbye, wandering out of the room and leaving Aesop to his own devices. Hopefully, away from chairs and sitting. Warren decided to double back, and return to Lilith, because honestly why not? It was probably better than hanging around Aesops bloody ass... 'That sounds like something she'd SAY.'

It wasn't too long before he made it back to the watchtower ladder, quickly climbing after leaving his sword behind. He poked his head up from the hatch,

"Mind if I spend awhile up here?"
________________________________________________________________________________________________
Kayneth

"Mind if I take a seat?"

"So long as the table and your pistol remain in place." Kayneth warned, one hand resting on his sword and the other holding his pistol in the vague direction of the Mountainous Man. Bit, complete opposite in terms of skin color, looked more intelligent when he wasn't trying to cave a man's head in with his own brain-holder.

"Name and intention. If you'd please." Kayneth never took his eyes off the man, nor did his revolver waver. It was filled with explosive ammo, a shot hitting anywhere would make that part disappeared. And it seemed quite hard to miss.
 
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Lilith titled her head slightly, not taking her eyes off the horizon, as she heard someone climb the ladder.

"Mind if I spend awhile up here?"

"Only if you brought back my priest." Lilith smiled, blowing smoke out of her nostrils. The room was pretty hazy by this point.

At this rate, she was going to have spent more time with Warren over the period of two days, than she ever did over the year and a half since his arrival on the Maiden. She was glad, Warren wasn't so intimidating once you got to know him.

Still bat shit fucking crazy, but the friendly kind of crazy, the crazy you want on your side.

Her eyes still on the Ashlands, Lilith nodded towards the second chair. "Fiiiiiiiine, I'll let you off this time."
 

ProtoChimp

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"Mhmm. I'm just going to go find something else to do. Another time." Said Warren as he wandered out the room.

"Wait, I didn't mean like y-ah fuck it you're not listening to a word I say are you?" Warren was already out the room by the time the word 'listening' was said by Aesop. He bowed his head in shame, picking up the book and looking inside the crate he fell into for other books. Without looking to see what they were he grabbed a handful. He tucked them under his arm as he held some cookies in his hand of the same arm. He turned and was heading out the room when his mind stopped working for a moment.

Slowly, he turned and limped his way over to the crate he was staring into earlier. Wine and Whiskey littering the bottom layer. He picked up a bottle of whiskey and observed it for a long while before promptly dropping it onto the floor, letting it smask and the liquids contained spread out across the floor. Swiftly he reached in and grabbed a small box of cigars as he hobbled out, trying to avoid the scent of the alcohol. Limping around the ship he tried his best to avoid crew members, though some saw him hobbling and thus his bloody behind, much to their amusement. Entering his room and slamming the door closed he threw the books and cookies onto the bed as he immediately grabbed a match and lit the cigar. Not much of a smoker, not since he was 16, but he needed a vice to take his mind off of the booze and the contents of the crate he took with him. Grabbing the first aid kit he kept in his bedside drawer he gingerly tended to his wounds, of which I will just say he did what you're supposed to do to clean wounds because nobody wants to read the details of that. It took much longer than he wanted but he was sure he had it all sorted. Slowly setting himself down Aesop lay on his stomach on his cot with an overload of bandages where he was scratched. Leaning his head up he smoked with one hand and continued to read the book from which he was reading earlier.

"Chapter 3. The night shadows. A Wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other. A solemn consideration..."
 

Ruedyn

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"Only if you brought back my priest."

"Never took you for the religious type." Warren muttered, looking around as much as he could. Not much. He left the hatch open as he meandered inside, trying not to cough. Lilith seemed to be admiring the view, Warren couldn't exactly say the same. All 30+ years of desolate desert kind of ruined the wonderment for him.

"Fiiiiiiiine, I'll let you off this time."

"Appreciated." Warren muttered, leaning on a wall. At least it was peaceful up here. He didn't want to sit, though, Aesoping himself was not an option. "So... Got any stories?" He asked innocently after a brief pause.
 
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"Never took you for the religious type."

Lilith smirked, snubbing out her cigarette. "I was raised by nuns, don't let the whole 'bandit' thing fool you." She noticed that he didn't seem particularly fond of sitting down. Always on guard, this one.

"So... Got any stories?"

Lilith raised an eyebrow. "Stories? What kind of stories?"
 

Fappy

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"So long as the table and your pistol remain in place."

It had taken Bennie a second to figure it out, but he was sure of it now. This was the albino of the Vance family, Kayneth. Though they had never met, Bennie had heard of his exploits. This was the duelist, one of the few nobles alive who had any sort of code to speak of.

Bennie could trust him.

He smiled and slowly placed his revolver on the table.

"Name and intention. If you'd please."

Bennie pulled out a seat and plopped down across from Kayneth, "Right to the point I see. I don't see that a lot with nobles these days." He leaned back and crossed his arms casually. "The name's Bennie Carmine of the late Carmine family. Might you know the name 'Rocksteady'? They used to call me that in my Maiden days."

Bennie grinned devilishly. He didn't want to make the man uncomfortable, but he couldn't help taking the piss out of him at least a little bit, "What I want is revenge, Kayneth. I want to plant my feet on the bridge of the Maiden once more and be able to call it my own. I want to put that two-faced ***** in her place." He lit up a cigarette and blew smoke up into the air above them. "This' been a long time coming. What do you say, Kayneth? You get the bounty.... I get the ship?"

Sunglasses were a godsend when it came to lying and despite Bennie's aptitude in the craft the extra aid was always welcome. In truth he'd need Kayneth to make contact for him and lead him to where some of the crew may be. From there... Bennie wasn't sure, but he knew he had to get to Pixie as fast as he could. Hell'd be on its way sooner rather than later and he was certain it'd be him pulling her ass out of the fire when it came.
 

roushutsu

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"Ya' know, ya' kind'a remind me of m'self in a way. An' I mean that in the most complimentary way possible." Well, that caught Josephine off guard, and Elizabeth was quick to question it. "I 'spose yer right. I don' have any honor nor can I be counted on to keep'a promise. That's why I'm leave'n yer protection up to her. Whadda ya' say?"

Despite her companion's protests, she nodded to the captain. "Aye. Thou has a deal." Suddenly, something came to mind. She and Elizabeth weren't the only captives, and as much of an annoyance that that man was yesterday, she couldn't have him doing anything that would put either of them at risk. "Captain, may I ask about the other captive? The one thou would'st kill before on the train? Has he caused you or your men any more grief?"
 

Ruedyn

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Warren

"Stories? What kind of stories?"

"It means any past experiences. Like seeing Aesop getting his ass stuck in a moldy wooden crate, reading a book to himself. Or how you got your scar." He smiled faintly at the last part, pushing his up further. He looked out the window for a few seconds.

"If you go first, I'll tell you one of mine."
________________________________________________________________________________________________
Kayneth

"Right to the point I see. I don't see that a lot with nobles these days."

'And most would cut out your tongue for that.' Kayneth didn't move the pistol, but noted that he disarmed himself. He had seen the headbutt earlier, though, no chance of him dropping his weapons. No matter how sure he was that he could take this guy one handed.

"The name's Bennie Carmine of the late Carmine family. Might you know the name 'Rocksteady'? They used to call me that in my Maiden days."

"I wouldn't." Kayneth replied simply, maintaining his taciturn nature. His eyes widened somewhat, though, when his prey's name was said so casually. The man grinned, and it took much to keep his sword in it's sheath. A head is a head... And this man had a large head. He decided to wait, however, see how this went.

"What I want is revenge, Kayneth. I want to plant my feet on the bridge of the Maiden once more and be able to call it my own. I want to put that two-faced ***** in her place."

A shadow of rage passed over the Duelists face, he hadn't told him his name... and to use it so casually, after identifying with the very people he was to hunt. Arrogant, but the noble grit his teeth and let him finish his presentation.

"This' been a long time coming. What do you say, Kayneth? You get the bounty.... I get the ship?"

"I did not tell you my name, and I sure as hell didn't give you permission to use my first." Kayneth said, after a long, silent moment. "But you're allowed to come along, so long as you don't slow me down."