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Across The World's Edge - Play Thread


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#1 the bearded one

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Posted 01 August 2016 - 02:33 AM

The cold winds descended from the mountainsides. It made Jurgen shivver, despite his fur coat, and he pulled the fabric of the coat a little tighter. He and his mercenary band were encamped on the eastern edge of the world's edge mountains, and once the muster was complete they would head out east on a venture arranged many months beforehand. Jurgen had felt apprehensive about the job during those long days, and the sight of the grey pale horizon of the dark lands did little to comfort him, but the pay was good enough to be worth the risk. Soon a person of importance would make their way across that horizon - dispatches via ravens assured him that they'd made it safely through the mountains of Mourn - and they required the additional escort for the final leg of their long journey. Nothing would sour someone's day more than being brutally murdered on the final few hundred miles of a journey that's spanned thousands.

Jurgen steadied himself. Time to see if the muster was complete, including the new arrivals. He made his way down the steep incline towards camp, and surveyed the scene: The company had set up camp in a small secluded valley, hemmed in on most sides by rocky cliffs, and slopes covered by thick thorny bushes.

Jurgen plumped himself down on the chair in front of his command tent, sitting behind a simple table. Next to him quartermaster Friderich was already eagerly scribbling away in the massive tome that contained the regiment's recordkeeping. In front of the table a line of soldiers extended through the camp. The regiment was fairly small - around 80 men, mostly pike and swordsmen, and a few crossbowmen - and had no real hope of keeping off a greenskin warband, but with any luck it would be plenty to ward off scouts and raiding parties, and slip back and forth across the Silver Road without being noticed. Jurgen looked at the men's faces; he knew most of them. They had either served under him for a long time already, or he had met a large number of them in Wissenburg, where it had been agreed to complete the muster on the other side of the mountainrange. He wondered how many of them had made (or survived) the journey, and whether they would even make it to 80 men. Still, if they didn't show, there'd be more coin to go around from their wealthy benefactor. Among them were also a number of men and dwarfs he did not recognise.

He watched silently as Friderich did the paperwork, and properly signed up everyone and handled the salaries and expenses, potential stipends for widows andsoforth. Jurgen occasionally exchanged glances with men as they came and went. Soon they could finally head out of the mountains.

Edited by the bearded one, 01 August 2016 - 02:36 AM.


#2 Glyfi Ironbeard

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Posted 02 August 2016 - 05:11 PM

Thori couldn't believe it! His luck had finally improved for he had stumbled down upon this group making the journey through the mountains. He was even going to get paid for having the protection of the group on his journey to the other side.

He had spent so long alone in the wilderness with nothing but grief and heartache, he didn't remember that things to good to be true, most definitely are. If he would have thought a bit more, his simple thinking of journeying to the other side might have been ominous.

Despite it all, he happily signed the paperwork, adjusted his pack and brass lantern, and joined the others gathering around. He even saw a few other dwarfs gathered about and made towards them, waiting for them to acknowledge his presence.

#3 Grim1

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 10:21 AM

Francesco started to smile as he approached the front of the line.
 
He had already mouthed all of his common man small-talk in the last ten minutes, and as he perused the motley riffraff around him, he turned to Alessandro.
 
"These people" he muttered in Tilean "Flap their tongues more than my dogs after a chase. Why is there not a better way to travel the Silver Road."
 
Knowing his bodyguard is unlikely to reply to his griping, Francesco checks himself over. Breastplate and chain recently oiled, his violet cloak and scarlet hat sitting at the perfect angle to make a good impression, beard trimmed and moustache curled smartly. First impressions matter, and there was no finer man within a five hundred miles he tells himself. This captain would see his worth and give him a position of great importance in his company.
 
Seeing the last of the line disappear before him, he steps proudly up to the Captain and Paymaster and with a toothy grin and slightly accented Reikspeil he announces
"I am Francesco Lucciano and this is my man Alessandro, two finer fighting men you will rarely have met in these parts. Our swords could be yours Captain, you are very fortunate man today." 

Edited by Grim1, 25 August 2016 - 10:53 PM.


#4 Thane Wrok Bearslayer

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Posted 04 August 2016 - 11:11 AM

Snorri sat on his backback at the edge of the gathering. While he was sharpening his axe, he was observing the crowd.
Mostly humans and dwarves. 'Good', he thought. Even to himself, snorri never said that much.
After taking a deep breath, he stood up, slung his backback on his back and joined the line, just behind a human dressed like a peacock, who seemed very content with himself.
'Splendid', he thought. Snorri was quite the cynical dwarf.
"Next!", said the man behind the desk, and the peacock man stepped forward, while starting a monologue about why the captain needed him in the mercenary band.
Snorri just sighed.

#5 Grim1

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Posted 05 August 2016 - 08:43 AM

Francesco wipes the quill with his handkerchief and explains to the watching world "A tutor once told me that diseases could spread by direct skin contact with items, as well as through evil airs and poisoned liquids." He signs his full name on the page with a flourish, moves aside for Alessandro to make his mark and continues his speech, "Perhaps, you could see to making your men take baths before they set out Captain. There seems to be a miasma of evil around many in this place."

 

With a short bow Francesco quickly retreats away from the table, before the captain becomes angry with him.... yet again.

 

As he walks away Francesco furiously mutters, in Tilean, to Alessandro "What a rude, powerdrunk fool that captain was, I doubt that he will survive this trip."

 

Alessandro raises an eyebrow at that last comment, and Francesco clarifies.

"I don't mean I will end him, good friend, despite my annoyance of his rudeness, I have signed on to this company and I will honour my word. I say this because the captain must be critically myopic if he is unable to see how fit I am to lead. He does not seem wise enough to maintain discipline of this company of pirates, they will turn on him for sure." 

 

Realising that he is raising his voice, and people were looking on, he takes a deep breath and continues "Perhaps I could save him, if he were to let me, but he would need to overcome his concerns about me usurping his command. Perhaps I should be graceful and show how willing I am to competently carry out even his most foolish of orders.... then he will promote me for certain and then I will, in turn, promote you my friend."

 

Seeing Alessandro sigh in resignation, Francesco addresses him some words of inspiration "We will be strong and endure this momentary indignity from these unwashed. As that fool captain said you will answer to Alex, and I will accept the moniker of Fr...Fr... Franz... but regardless, inside where it matters most, we will remain Francesco and Alessandro."

Raising his arm to demonstrate the camp tents around them "We may have to billet in the filth with these commoners but we will shine like stars to inspire them to better themselves. We may have to eat their slop, smell their stench, endure their scorn... but we will endure."

 

Seeing some angry looks from some of the more brigand-like mercenaries surrounding them, and realising that perhaps one of them could understand Tilean, Francesco finishes his spiel with a genuine grin "Our primary goal has been achieved, we have joined this company and will travel the Silver Road. But, until I have gained the respect of these curs by the strength of my sword-arm, I think that you will need to watch my back tonight while I sleep."

 

 

 


Edited by Grim1, 25 August 2016 - 10:55 PM.


#6 Alebelly_Cragfist

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Posted 10 August 2016 - 09:48 PM

Sat on a low rock, Raki looked about him as he absentmindedly spun a boot knife blade down on a stone. It made a highly satisfactory whirring noise, almost like a song, a song of pain and lives cut short. Also a song of enduring Dawi craftsmanship. He loved that song, there was something very satisfying about the solid metallic tune as it spun. Something ancient, something... 'right'.

 

Flipping the blade up by its point, it spun above his head to be caught by the Dwarf without looking up, so familiar was he with his tools and their balance. Casually slipping it back into his boot, he appraised those around him. There were some fighters here no doubt, the long stares of men long since robbed of innocence, having seen too much to ever sleep well again; their scarred faces reflecting what was a scarred soul, no doubt. There were killers here too, men who enjoyed the fight, those who revelled in the smell of p*ss, sh*t and blood as they tore into bellies and raked blades across faces. They had a casual, crude confidence about them, a confidence that would one day be their undoing if his experience was anything to go by. He couldn't see any real soldiers here, perhaps the odd deserter. In contrast, there were far too many boys, lads no more than fourteen or so summers with barely a chin whisker amongst them. It wasn't his job to keep them alive.

 

As he mused on their likely survivability should they face a Greenskin horde, his attention was drawn to a strutting Cockerel whose speech, accent and garb assumedly came from some far flung region beyond the Empire. Despite the sneers shot to the rest of the men, he walked with balance and confidence. Perhaps there was a trained soldier here after all?

 

Raki had already signed his name, reading the contract closely to make sure he knew, to the letter, what was expected for his coin. He could not fund an incursion back home, but every copper was one step closer his goal and the location all but promised a fight with Grob.

 

He wasn't here to make friends, but he saw a few Dwarfs that looked like they'd survived a scrape or two. He decided to move nearer them and the Cockerel. They looked to be a safer gamble in a tight spot.

 

Leaning against a standing stone, he lit his pipe and contemplated breaking into his meagre ale ration. Content to stay quiet for the time being, he just nodded to the other Dawi and enjoys his pipe weed.


Edited by Alebelly_Cragfist, 10 August 2016 - 10:06 PM.


#7 the bearded one

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Posted 20 August 2016 - 06:11 AM

As Francesco and Allesandro moved off, Friederich exhaled loudly, rubbing his temple. "Tileans..", Jurgen muttered as he slid deeper into his chair, resting his head on the palm of his hand.

"At least he's not Estalian, those hardly even bother speaking Reikspiel. I swear, it's like their entire language consists of 'ai ai' and 'caramba'.. Whatever that means."

Friederich continued signing on the next people in line. When Snorri followed the Tileans and signed the contract Friederich slid towards him, he could see from it (and from the pages of the large tome of company records beneath it) that the service wage was 10 gold crowns (or 200 schillings) a month, and 6 for the youngest and freshest recruits. Considering that the usual soldier's wage tended to fluctuate around 4 crowns, and 8 for veterans, these wages were a pretty good deal. Not to mention the promise - though vague and unspecific - of a bonus payment upon completion of the mission. As was standard practice a portion of their pay would likely be deducted to pay for their rations though. Mercenary life wasn't easy.

After Snorri two more men followed. Once they had signed their papers as well, Friederich declared to the men that they would depart within the hour. A number of them - the core of the mercenaries, who had already been part of the band before - would take down the tents and camp infrastructure and hide them away in the bushes until they could be picked up on the way back. From this point on they could not risk the time and danger of setting up their tents every other night, so from here on out they would be sleeping just with their blankets under open skies.

"You have one hour, then we leave. Take a few minutes to rest."


Jurgen - his chair had been taken away in order to be hidden in the foilage so he sat himself down on a nearby log instead - kept staring at the members of the company, almost as if assessing everyone, sometimes locking eyes but never for more than a moment.

Many of the men took their que to rest, a trio took out a bunch of dice and spent their time playing a game, and quite a considerable group of the pikemen took the oppertunity for some quick drills to practice marching in formation with their pikes, and to form a solid pikewall as rapidly as they could. Almost all of them may have originated from the Empire or the border princes, but this style of warfare was more reminiscent of what was used in Tilea and Estalia. They got the hang of it pretty quickly and seeing 40 pikemen move in unision was quite an impressive sight.

#8 Thane Wrok Bearslayer

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Posted 21 August 2016 - 10:03 AM

Snorri signed the contract with his signature double S rune. He had quickly read through it, and was content with what it promised. The pay was certainly not bad and he was quite desperate in need of an income, since the hunting had not gone as well as he had hoped.

He was one of the last mercenaries to sign up, and soon the call came that they would move out in about an hour. Snorri used his time well, with checking his gear once more and sharpen his axe. He surprised himself during the sharpening of his beloved one-handed axe, when he realized that he was actually feeling a bit nervous about what was about to come.

'Thats strange', he thought. 'I can't remember the last time I was nervous. What could this mean? The contract looked like nothing special. Sure, there would probably be some fighting ahead, but thats nothing to be nervous about. Nah, probably all these Umgi around me are making me as squishy as they are... I'd better find some proper company'.

He shrugged, picked up his gear and casually walked towards a small gathering of dwarves, nodding to no one in particular as a form of greeting. 'Thats better' he told himself, and sat on his backpack next to a dwarf leaning against a big rock while smoking a pipe. 



#9 Alebelly_Cragfist

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Posted 22 August 2016 - 09:00 PM

Raki puffed two smoke rings, shooting one through the other as a rather chuff deprived Dwarf approached.

 

"Duraki Dangdron, but most call me Raki" he said, still staring off across the gathered Manlings.

 

"Not much of a throng, are we?" he added, somewhat morosely.



#10 Grim1

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Posted 22 August 2016 - 11:15 PM

Gesturing with his head, Francesco says "Alessandro, look there.... a most formidable looking dwarf pretending not to be staring directly at us. How typical of his race,so incapable of showing even a smidgeon of subtlety." In a whisper he continues "Has he been sent to kill me or is he just looking for trouble? Well, he has tobacco and I am out, come let us make our introductions.... if he means us ill, well all roads lead to Remas."
 
With a confident stride, Francesco begins to cross the thoroughfare, observing as another dwarf sits alongside the veteran in a suspiciously nonchalant fashion. Francesco whistles and calls out "You there! Master dwarf. Is there any chance you might have some tobacco to share, I have some Manchego cheese to trade with you."
 
Francesco takes a final glance at both dwarfs and all four of his trusty weapons and, reassured in his readiness for anything to follow, continues "I believe that you will be surprised at the flavour of this cheese, far more impressive than any other that you will ever encountered before."
 
Action; Francesco crosses towards the mean looking dwarfs, ready to defend himself if required. 

Edited by Grim1, 22 August 2016 - 11:22 PM.


#11 Glyfi Ironbeard

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 06:50 PM

Thori stood and watched the dwarfs as they gathered together. It had been a few years since he had interacted with any members of his own race.

Working his claim in the mountains had been a lonely existence since his family had moved back to the hold. He had traded with some humans for material he had needed to begin with but as the mine dried up he had to rely more and more on what he was able to find in the wilderness. The payout on this trip was just what he needed to be able to get him back home and away from such a miserable existence.

Not wishing to intrude on the small group of dwarfs, he had been content to stand alone a few paces away and watch. So it was that he saw the loud, funny talking human approach the group. As the humans moved closer to the dwarfs, Thori found himself moving closer to see if he could here what they were saying.

#12 Alebelly_Cragfist

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 08:18 PM

Duraki was familiar with Manlings having spent most of his life amongst them. The brazier light of the mountain realms all but a distant memory of a beardling looking back to his homeland as it was ransacked by waves of green. Even so, the Manling that approached him now pushed his ear for their accents.

 

"Manling. he said by way of a hello.

 

"Cheese? If I was a starvin' Dwarf, you may have a claim on my pipe weed, but my pouch is full of the finest 'baccy this side of the World's Edge mountains and it aint for tradin'.

 

It was, of course. Good source of protein, cheese. But Duraki was a Dwarf, even if he hadn't seen the Holds for decades, the innate need to strike a hard bargain hadn't escaped his blood. He had food, this fop didn't have tobacco. That made him have the bargaining power, as he saw it.


Edited by Alebelly_Cragfist, 23 August 2016 - 08:20 PM.


#13 Grim1

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 10:04 PM

Seeing no threatening moves from either dwarf, Francesco relaxes his shoulders and begins to swagger as he approaches "Signore Dwarf, do you wish me to call you 'Signore Dwarfling'...... No, because I show you the respect that you're experience is due. And I hope that you perceive, that as a man, I am no 'ling'.... so please, call me Francesco...... or Franz if you wish."
 
As he draws close, Fran sees that the dwarf has differing pigmentation in his eyes, and his hair. Thinking on what this might mean, he continues with his opening gambit.
 
"Your claims for your weed are strong 'Signore Dwarf', here to the East of the Worldspine Mountains one might struggle for even a smoke of a poor quality leaf, but my guess is that my Estalian Manchego is an even rarer prize here, and one that I guess you've never yet had the pleasure of tasting. From where does your tobacco hail from.... Mootland I hope??? If so, we may have similar views about quality and character."


#14 Alebelly_Cragfist

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 10:27 PM

"No offence was meant, Manling. Happy to call you by your given name if that settles your feathers...

 

"The Moot indeed. I once did a favour for a Halfling caught the wrong side of Sylvania... I wasn't to know she was related to a chief amongst her clan, owned a bl**dy great tobacco plantation. The wily lil runts aint so air-headed as they appear, neither. I've sworn an oath not to say more, but suffice to say, you won't get a smoke like this anywhere else, not for coin nor cunnin'.

 

"I have no doubt your cheese is a fine flavour, but what I aint tasted I won't miss and I think this weed may well be wasted on your palate... he says as he inhales a lungful of the aromatic weed with a deliberate look of satisfaction.

 

"...Now that, that's a smoke!"



#15 Grim1

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Posted 25 August 2016 - 11:56 AM

Francesco looks at the dwarf, and seeing no malice in his disturbing stare, is very much amused by the longbeard's performance and sales pitch. 
 
"I am glad that lady fortune has smiled upon you and brought you, and your precious cargo, here at my time of need." Francesco holds his fist to his chin, mimicking the pose of the 'Thinker' statue of Miranglio, then continues.  
"Now, you say that neither coin or cunning will help me. And my lovely cheese fails to please. I can only see that the options of robbery and murder remain open to me in my current quest for a smoke."
 
Flashing his best disarming grin, he continues "Would you let me buy you a drink, I have seen many an impossible trade take place soon after a few strong drinks." Motioning toward the other dwarf he continues "Please feel free to bring your friend along, since my friend here, Alessandro, follows me closer than my own shadow."


#16 Thane Wrok Bearslayer

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Posted 25 August 2016 - 12:08 PM

Snorri was just about to gently float away on his own thoughts, when he heard the dwarf next to him introduce himself.

'Duraki... Raki, he' s called. Never heard the name before.... I don't see anyone close enough he could have been talking to... Might be he's a little strange in the head then... A cousin of my brothers wife does that as well, talks to himself all day long... Poor fella... Argh bollocks! He probably was talking to me!' 

 

Jumping to his feet, Snorri almost yelled: " Snorri Silverhelm, Silent Snorri most folks call me!" It was only then he realised that Raki was in a conversation with the peacock-like manling. He muttered: "Excuse me, I thought you were talking to me. Must be the warmth..."



#17 Alebelly_Cragfist

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Posted 25 August 2016 - 03:41 PM

Raki laughs, near chocking as plumes of pipe smoke are forcibly expelled from his lungs. Murder or robbery?! Hah!

 

"Hah! Well, you may not be the keenest blade on the rack, but at least you have a sense of humour, Manliiii... Franz, and that goes a long way on a cold night on the trail! For lightening my mood, you can have a pipeful of my weed as fair trade.

 

*Dwarf* ale, is it?"

 

Duraki pinches a not too generous wad of pipeweed from his tobacco purse and offers it to Francesco.

 

At the outburst from Snorri, he raises an eyebrow.

 

"You OK there, brother? Caught you nappin' did I?"



#18 Grim1

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Posted 25 August 2016 - 10:49 PM

Franz receives the (very measured) gift offered to him with a relieved sigh 

"You seem to be a very decent fellow, I truly appreciate this kindness. Do either of you know where we might find reasonably priced dwarf ale, and a decently priced Brettonian red wine?? If so, I will pay a sensible premium for these quality drinks...... if not lets try Empire ale, and hope eventually the taste of it will become acceptable to us."  



#19 Thane Wrok Bearslayer

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Posted 26 August 2016 - 06:55 AM

Snorri feels his cheeks getting warm.

"Aye, i'm sorry, I must have dozed off. I'll introduce myself proper this time. My name's Snorri Silverhelm, son of Bardin Silverhelm of the Silverhelm clan from Karak Hirn, although I haven't been there for a few years... I couldn't help overhearing you folks talking about ale. If it would not trouble you, i'd like to join you in your quest to find the best dark brown ale. You seem to be amongst the few here that look like they know how to swing an axe.. or a sword, for that matter, so I think I'll be in good company" 



#20 Glyfi Ironbeard

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Posted 26 August 2016 - 10:04 AM

Thori listened in on the conversation from a sensible distance. He had smiled to himself as the dwarf had began to bargain with the strange dressed man named Franz. He was about to walk over and introduce himself when the second dwarf kept to his feet and proclaimed his name.

The outburst had stopped him in his tracks. Now the group was preparing to move on to find an ale so Thori finally decided to speak up.

"Do you think the weather will hold for a bit?" he asked.

It came out in a rush of words because he was nervous. Still, he was now committed so he exhaled deeply and continued, "I am Thori. I am glad to see some fellow dwarfs traveling this far East."




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