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Author Topic: Chapter Three- Strata, Thieves, Romance and Jewels.  (Read 28980 times)
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Almenda
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« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2002, 07:19:22 AM »

As Almenda starts riding along with Capher, the knight comes up and says stuff about taverns and such. And the other lady besides Talia or the one with green skin say something about the lage group. Capher tells her that Almenda and Awyon won't be there when they do something.

"Hey, Capher! If you pay for a night at a tavern and I manage to get a bow, I'd come with you guy's anywhere. Even if It's to a dragon cave. I have other skills then just archery and singing you know. And I've no plans for the next few months."

"If you can't do great things, do small things in a GREAT way."

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Koldar Mondrakken
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« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2002, 08:12:22 AM »

Terra has some objections but personally I completely agree with her. 'Time to dig out old memories, I guess.' Silfer wants to know some info about Strata and obviously this bard seems not too interested in leaving us. 'Oh, well, his problem when he follows people like us!'

"You want to know something about Strata, Silfer? Well, I was there once years ago for some time. Not one of the more amusing adventures in my life."

I look around to make sure anyone interested can hear me and look for a start. Finally I remember passages from old books and start with the great history of this city.

"Then I'll tell you about the dragon cave now, Almenda the bard." I add half laughingly.

"The legend tells that the city was founded by a man from the North, Drafras Tristin founded this place. It was a year of darkness and his people had fled from death and pain. They came to the Cape of Strata the southernmost place of Santharia and found the remains of an ancient city and complicate sewer systems. They decided to stay and founded the city of Strata which should rule the seas for centuries before other cities could catch up. Once the city had a huge old harbor guarded by an ancient lighthouse but the ocean took back the land and so the great harbor of Strata was destroyed and only the lighthouse which has been there since the beginning of history remained.
Without the harbor the might of Strata declined and the people living in the shadows took over the city. Murderers and thieves ruled the city for decades before order was reestablished but still these competing factions were never eradicated. They hide in the ancient sewer systems and the older districts most notably one named Vagabond's Hideout which once was the old harbour district.
These places as well as the new harbour are still the most dangerous places of Strata and guess where  we have to go?" I add with a smile.

"I know an Inn that might be easy to find and still lies outside these places so we might stay unobserved there for a while. I'd think that me and Terra should go down to the harbour in order to find an old ...'friend' of mine and can meet everybody at that Inn. What do you think?"

I look around if anyone still has any questions or objections and wonder if they are really aware of the fact that a tavern in Strata is not nearly as relaxing as the Thristy Herald was, esspecially with the plan we have. 'I wonder how many of them already dealt with real thieves. I fear this bard and compagnion might be the most experienced in this field though not necessarily from the right perspective.'

Koldar Mondrakken, Knight of the Moonlight
--One Sword might make you a warrior but a dagger in your boot makes you a winner!--

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Terra Artemos
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« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2002, 02:07:22 PM »

"Koldar, if this is the case, what should I know about the area?"

'Life is a grim reality, through which only honor shines.'

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Avour
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« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2002, 05:36:22 PM »

Avour rides her cream coloured horse playfully about the others, using a seemingly endless energy. Feeling supercharged and covered again from the sun, Avour feels her skin repairing itself. The tightness of the new flesh tingelling over her burnt body.

She resists the urge to shout out loud, as she normally would while riding an animal. Looking over at Talia she is amazed with her grace on her animal. Avour tries to copy her movements, almost falling off her own horse twice before giving it a miss.

Smiling from ear to ear she directs her horse towards Talia. "Talia-Friend, does this mean that you wear Skirt and Avour be Main Attraction?" She askes. Listening to Koldar's story she gets covered in goose bumps. "Sound affraid place to go. Why we go there?" Avour asks.

“You’d be lost if I wasn’t here to annoy you”
             – Little Sister speaking to Big Sister.......
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Koldar Mondrakken
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« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2002, 07:46:22 AM »

I smile about Avour's comment. 'Oh well, when all people would be that straightforward and honest.'

"It's not a place to be afraid off but a place where one should be very cautious. And you Terra. Well, the only advice I can give you is: Don't talk to strangers, have an eye on your bags and keep away from dark streets at night. Well, it's a nice theory but we will have to do right that. If you get lost, try to get back to the Inn which is located at the old Harbour Gate. It is called "Seashoal's Rest" one of the better places near the harbour district. Don't get into trouble with someone. In Strata troublemakers usually don't travel alone. Just watch my back. Ah, yes, don't go anywhere alone.
We will arrive at the gate at evening so I guess we will not see any of the good sites of Strata." I smile at Avour to cheer her up " but I guess you'll like the Seashoal's Rest very much. I would even say that it is as good as the Thirsty Herald perhaps even more comfortable."

Looking forward I see some characteristic rocks and dry trees as the road climbs this hillside. I think we should decide what we do. On the other side of the hill we have a first sight on the city. Then it is only another hour to the Northern Gate. I think you'll enjoy it. The old, yet dangerous, pearl of the South."

That said I hurry to reach the hilltop to show the others Strata and the way in. 'It has been a long time. Hopefully not much has changed and hopefully enough changed that I don't bring the others into trouble.'

Koldar Mondrakken, Knight of the Moonlight
--One Sword might make you a warrior but a dagger in your boot makes you a winner!--

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Ta'lia of the Seven Jewels
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« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2002, 10:03:22 AM »


Talia smiles back to the cheerful Avour: „I don‘t know if I will wear these clothes, that depends on what Capher has in mind. But I think it will be better if you are no main attraction. Remember we have skipped the idea of  doing a carnival troop. And what Koldar and Gean are telling from Strata it will really be better to attract no attention. Or, hmm. maybe I‘lll have an idea.“
Meanwhile they have reach with Koldar in the lead a point where they have a first sight on the old town of Strata.
And the view is magnificent. An hour away from sunset  Injara is on his way down to sink into the Burning Sea and the white towers of Strata are shimmering in a warm tone from gold and orange to a light pink. Nothing of the partly decay is to be seen  and it looks very inviting.
Talia directs Swing to Koldar and Capher asking:
„Is it perhaps a good idea if  Avour and  I are drawing all attention to us, Swing might do it anyway, while you pass the gate a bit later or sooner, we meet then at the inn.“

Some people say I'm naughty.I'm not. I have the heart of a young girl.  - In a jar, on my desk.

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Avour
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« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2002, 01:33:22 PM »

Avour struggles over the meaning of the word Stranger. She knows that Koldar was meaning a person, but strange is something weird. She is baffled how a person can be strange and frowns while trying to figure it out. Realising that at the end of Koldar’s explanation that she was so deep in thought that she’d missed everything after “strangers”.

Talia says that she might not end up wearing the skirt after all. She sighs, “ Skirt make you look prettier!” Avour pleads, not understanding the reasons behind Talia not wearing the skirt, but respecting her decision and ceases with her ‘puppy dog look’ at Talia.

Looking around Avour is somewhat stunned. “Smell funny” She says simply. Looking to Koldar she smiles her cheeks still a little puffy from the sun adding to her cuteness. “Avour thirsty.” She states looking about for the water containers but can’t find any on her horse.

“You’d be lost if I wasn’t here to annoy you”
             – Little Sister speaking to Big Sister.......
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Capher
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« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2002, 02:18:22 AM »

I was deep in thought, thinking about what Koldar had told Avour and especially Terra, when Talia asks me a question.
"Hmm.. That is a good question Talia, I think that since it will be dark before we reach the gates, Yes you should go in with Avour and our two guests here and head for the inn.  The Seashoal'a rest. I assume our bard here would not attract that much attention asking the where abouts of it. They would think he is looking for a place to sing and tell tales."

"Koldar," I look at him. "I suggest that you and Terra go look for your friend take Gean along with you just in case.  I, and the rest will follow a little later on, I need to check out an escape plan. We should all meet at the inn after we are done."

"Talia," I turn back to her. "Here is some gold coins." I pull out a small bag of coins and toss them to her. "That should be enough for food and to rent a couple of rooms for the night. Try and get the rooms side by side and away from the street. Toward the rear of the inn if possible."

I turn back to Koldar, "I just thought of something, Where did you say the harbour was? I need to go there."

I look around. "If anyone else has any suggestions or comments make them now. Because as soon as we get to the gates it will be too late. Remember, discretion is better than valor this night. May Sayella be with us all."

I await all their replies.

Capher, Tribes and Races Supervisor Moderator.Wisdom is given to those whom it knows.

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Koldar Mondrakken
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« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2002, 04:36:22 AM »

I raise my eyebrows when Capher talks about an escape plan. 'This might be really a problem when we don't get out fast enough.'

"The new harbour is farther west of the city center. YOu might go through Vagabond's Hideout there but if I remember correctly the merchants take another way that evades this district and is faster. A broad main street from one of the main plazas to the southwest should directly lead to the docks and the warehouses. You should look for a ship from Milkengrad or Vardynn. They tend to care the least for the Stratanian thugs." I add, assuming the most obvious escape route when we don't want to go back into the desert.

"I think me and Terra should ride forward to arrive at the gate before you, then we have more time to find my friend and come back to the Inn. You follow the main street from the gate to the main market place and then right into the Sea-Laneroad. At its end you should encounter the old guardhouse of the harbour. The only building with a tower in that area. Just go right-hand-side when you stand before the harbour gate and you should find the Seashoal's Inn pretty easy. The street might be narrow but it's a big stone building with glass windows, I guess." I pause "Are you sure that you want to alone to the harbour, Capher?"

Koldar Mondrakken, Knight of the Moonlight
--One Sword might make you a warrior but a dagger in your boot makes you a winner!--

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Capher
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« Reply #24 on: January 21, 2002, 05:04:22 AM »

I memorize the directions to the harbour and the inn. Then I reply. "I am not going alone Koldar, I am going with Silfer, and you correctly assumed that a ship is what I am looking for. Besides escaping that way, we are going to need it to go to our next destination. I just need to find a captain and crew that don't ask too many questions and a fast ship. I just hope I can find one.  I hope neither of you are afraid of water, or get sea sick.  We may be in for a long voyage at sea."

I look around. "I also agree with your plan Koldar, about you and Terra and Gean going in first. Any questions?" I ask.

Capher, Tribes and Races Supervisor Moderator.Wisdom is given to those whom it knows.

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Ta'lia of the Seven Jewels
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« Reply #25 on: January 21, 2002, 09:27:22 AM »

Talia catches Caphers gold and hides it in he pockets.
„Thanks , Capher. Ok then, I will leave  with Avour, Almenda and his companion  in a few minutes, and we meet at the inn. We wont hurry so that Koldar and Terra are the first passing the gate. Capher, what should I do now when we are there, change my clothes so that I don‘t look like a Shendar fighter anymore? Who will keep an eye on my sword then, is it safe to leave it in this inn? What do you have in mind?“
Waiting for Caphers answer Talia passes her bottle with water to Avour.
 This girl hasn‘t any relevant equipement, I wonder how she has managed to get so far!

Some people say I'm naughty.I'm not. I have the heart of a young girl.  - In a jar, on my desk.

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Avour
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« Reply #26 on: January 21, 2002, 04:20:22 PM »

Listening to the conversation that goes on about her, Avour takes the bottle of water from Talia and nods. Thirstly taking a couple of mouthfuls and hands it back. Scratching her head she looks Talia in the eyes slightly tilting her head.

" Stranger, Avour no... know Stranger. Trying to think out word, to not be dumb. Think Stranger kin I no know?" She squints her eyes in concentration, hoping that she's got the idea.

"Why we no use Wings <bird noise> to get to place? Much quicker, is how Avour got to Tavern." She tilts her head the other way and looks down at the ground trying to think of the reason then shrugs and concentrates on Talia's answers. Wiping her bow she takes a deep breath stretching her arms. Bringing them back in under the shade of her coverings she looks at the skin and brushes a hand over them. The flakes flying into the air, her skin almost completly healed baring the new sunburn from the afternoons riding.

“You’d be lost if I wasn’t here to annoy you”
             – Little Sister speaking to Big Sister.......
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Ta'lia of the Seven Jewels
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« Reply #27 on: January 21, 2002, 08:16:22 PM »

„Avour, a stranger is somebody - human or any other race - you don‘t know, you are meeting the first time perhaps, or even if you have met him several times , but you don‘t know anything about him, and therefore you have to be careful about his actions or what you are saying to him, he could be friendly to you or hostile, you don‘t know this in advance, though you could perhaps judge from his appearance, but you might be wrong.“ Talia answers Avour, taking her bottle back.

„Even our party here, we are still strangers in some respect for each other. what do we kmow from each other, not much. I don‘t know where you are from nor which adventures Koldar had  or any of the others. I didnt know that Capher is a shapeshifter and we don‘t still know his true form. On the other side“ and now a smile flashes over her face, „beeing with you I have the impression that I met old friends, don‘t know why, it is just a feeling I can‘t express......oh well.“
Talia iis looking absently now, seems not to be aware what happens around her. But when Avour is proposing to fly she‘s back at once:
„Oh Avour, not everybody has your abilities, and arriving at Strata with a bird might not be the best way to NOT attract attention!“

Some people say I'm naughty.I'm not. I have the heart of a young girl.  - In a jar, on my desk.

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Capher
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« Reply #28 on: January 22, 2002, 02:09:22 AM »

I think about Talia's questions and is kind of surprised at Avour's telling of how she got here. I pause as I consider the options. I reply to Talia. "No, I don't think there is any need for you to change Talia. A Shendar warrior I don't think would be that of a curiosity to these people. I assume they see some come and go,.at least some times. Avour, your bird, where is it? I don't think you will need it, at least not for a while. After we get what we are looking for we are leaving Strata hopefully by ship.

I look around and call everyone close so I can talk to all of them at once. "I suppose since we are all alone out here, no listening ears, I can tell you where we are heading next. We head for Milkengrad up in northern Santharia, then we will be traveling on horse back to another destination, which I will tell you when we reach Milkengrad. So if there is anyone not willing to take the voyage and continue, tell me now. I will pay you what is coming to you and you can go on your way.

You two," I point to the two people we just rescued. Since you have no idea what is going on. I will briefly tell you, then you can decide whether or not you want to go with us or stay."
I have hired Koldar and the others to help me find certain artifacts of magic and power. We go to Strata, to find one of these artifacts, hopefully it is still there. The road is long and dangerous, but I pay all expenses and there will be some reward for all of you at the end of our quest. I warn you we face some very determined people who do not want us to finish this quest. You think that Gorba was something, he was nothing but a flea compared to some of the creatures and people we are likely to meet and may have to defeat to fulfil our quest. So it is up to you. Decide now. If no is your answer, that is ok, we will drop you off in Strata and leave you to your own devices. If yes is your answer then be prepared to do everything I tell you, no matter what. Is that understood?"

I pause and let my words and hopefully my meanings behind my words sink in. They must make an informed decision as it may cost them their lives.

Capher, Tribes and Races Supervisor Moderator.Wisdom is given to those whom it knows.

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Silfer Darkflare
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« Reply #29 on: January 22, 2002, 06:03:22 AM »

As capher speaks of escaping, i belive i could help. "Capher, i can cover us from hostile attention, and if any mage should try to track me or anyone else."

Silfer Darkflare
Master of the Lightning, The Santharian Annoyer and Reminder.
What is good and what is evil depends on which side of the coin you see.

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