The Warring States of NPF

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DanteFalcon 03-08-2016 08:41 AM

Fire Emblem: The Crumbled Capital
In the far south, along the border between Wodanaz and Saladin is a small border town originally named Fireside. Closer to the Wodanaz territory, the actual desert wouldn't start for a few more miles to the west. To the was a small winding road that followed the coast along the southern edge of Wodanaz turf. This road was the first step that Morgan had mapped out to the adventurers she had recruited. It wasn't the most direct route, however there was an ongoing war in Wodanaz between two rival clans that lays directly in that path. Her route avoided most major roads to avoid said war and likely banditry as much as possible. At the east gate of Fireside lay a small wagon with three people guarding it. The first, sitting on the back of the wagon with her gold trimmed robe fluttering and blue-green hair blowing in the same wind was Morgan.

"Don't be silly Vanessa, I'm certain that if they had animosity they would have already attacked us"

Vanessa for her part stood next to the wagon with her axes laying on the wagon, somewhere between eye-rolling and face-palming at the naivety of the young mage. "I'm glad you think so, because neither myself nor Oswald agrees. Ain't that right ya Araggant sir." Her intentional bastardization of the paladin's heritage blending into her somewhat crass speech.

Oswald for his part was the image of Aravin knighthood and merely shrugged at the comment. "I will follow the commander to our possible deaths, as is my duty."

Morgan looked positively pleased at the remark, completely missing the subtext while Vanessa could only sigh and grumble.

The trio were waiting for the remainder of their party, who may have tagged along or merely chosen to meet the group today, prepared for departure.

Overcast 03-08-2016 08:26 PM

The brothers Dionav were were not far up the road as far as things went, from their view they could see the distant outline of the wagon, Nye was rolling forward on his horse at a leisured pace while Dro kept up on foot,

"Was a good choice going this way, whoever she is she's smart enough to realize the big risks." Dro said simply, continuing their conversation on the job. They'd been subtly going over the minute details of it, and to be honest they both were looking forward to being in a small squad again instead of part of a greater army.

"True, it speaks well of her. Or her advisers. The money is there but I do like a bit of confidence in an employer. Especially when we don't have much in the way of exterior resources to work with." Nye was in agreement now, but he hadn't been entirely sure when the offer had arrived to them. Between the two of them he was the less willing to trust if only because he was more susceptible to the consequences of an ambush. Still Dro had been drawing him toward a warmer state, that and the money.

The trio would likely see the pair coming into view now, and even faintly hear them, "That them brother?" Dro probed, Nye having a bit better eyes between the pair, "Aye, you can't mistake hair like that." Which was some of the worry, the two were not unfamiliar with being treated with suspicion on arrival. They already looked like dangerous men, but having the additional eye of the Curse on them was a rough bargain.

Not that they held the same suspicions, at least not about the curse specifically, they were more suspicious of everyone they met. Still despite it they had already come too far, and Dro raised his hand in greeting, "Hail! Are you Morgan and company?"

phil_ 03-09-2016 12:25 AM

Saul's journey had led him once again back to the edges of his homeland. He was drawn by rumors that the current unrest had the potential to distinguish itself from the typical Wodanaz low boil of minor warfare. However, his path now turned toward a different rumor, one more in line with his quest and less in line with what may have been simple homesickness. They said a Kine was gathering a small force for an excursion to the old capital. An admirable show of initiative, and not just for a trembling Kine. Upon hearing the she was encamped in Fireside, Saul decided that either he would join her there if her expedition's prospects sounded good, or he would make Fireside his route back into the world in search of another lead.

Allen cared about none of this. Saul wasn't back home to fight for either side in the current war, and following a Kine on a trip to their formerly-magical, formerly-flying, former capital didn't seem like it would provide much excitement, either. Still, his job was to follow the shaman, and he persisted.

The two approached the city from the Northwest, Saul leading his charge and his charge's dragon much too slowly for either the Wyvern Rider or the wyvern's liking.

DanteFalcon 03-10-2016 09:55 AM

Morgan smiled as her name was called, standing up on the back of the wagon and waving a gloved hand over her head in greeting. "You found us alright! I'm Morgan Vian, the organizer and patron of this little expedition. The grumpy one down here is Vanessa..." this earned a glare from the red haired pirate "and this is Sir Oswald." and a nod from the mounted paladin.

As she waved, her companion spirit, a small serpent with the likeness of feathery wings except formed entirely of fire peeked out from the sleeve of her robe, watching the oncoming groups a bit before vanishing back into her sleeve.

Vanessa sighed a bit and spoke up after Morgan finished "And just in case you were worried she's always this cheery. Annoyin as dead waters really. And you never get used to it. But at least you never have to put up with any romance stories. Guys and girls can't take it for long enough" Morgan for her part ignored the jab as the two sets of companions approached.

Overcast 03-10-2016 12:07 PM

Nye lifted his own hand in greeting in response as the closed the distance between them, but not speaking up until he wouldn't have to yell. He wasn't much for wasting his voice outside of the battlefield where he had a habit of running it raw,

"Hail, I am Nye Dionav, this is my brother Dro." He said calmly yet clearly, Dro inclining his head with a mischievous looking grin, "The Brothers Dionav at your service, with enough patience to outlast any cheery demeanor, welcome to be hired for romance stories, and potentially a good sword and healer as well."

He was certainly joking but there was something about how dryly he said it that made you wonder how serious he was.

Dro piped up next, yet made no effort to clarify his brother's potential not joke, "The message gave a loose idea of our goals in the fallen Kine but I'd like to know if you got any other goals you weren't planning to say out loud till we got here." Nye nods in agreement, "Indeed, the place is likely more than a fair bit anarchistic in the aftermath of the fall. Contrary to local opinion on the nation I've never met an entirely helpless person, and despair does nothing if not make you harder."

Menarker 03-12-2016 05:14 PM

An unlikely pair walked the dusty road path...

"I told you I don't like this operation, right?" Said the gaunt tanned red-head.
"Himura, this is the fourth time you mentioned since we left base today, and I understood you even before that first time." The dark knight with the visor down spoke in a manly voice, although it was secretly a woman inside.
"But your superiors described her in sufficient details, Robin! Blue-Green hair with gold trimmed robes!? Name is Morgan? It gotta be that witch with the weird Laconic Curse, a damned Kinehdin!"
"Oh? You're familiar with our client in particular?" Robin's face was undetectable behind her locked up visor, but her face was stoic despite the tone of interest in her voice, humoring her partner.
"Just by reputation to be honest, but that's pretty much enough. I lived on that island since I was born until it fell when I was 17! How many cursed ones with features like hers does ones expect to find in one place, especially on a chunk of land separated from the rest of the world!?" The thief gestured broadly with daggers in hand before he spat on the far side of the road with disdain.
"Well, try to think of it this way. When the island came crashing down a decade ago, you came to us immediately so we could mount an expedition to ransack the fallen nation before anyone else could."
"Yup, we pretty much picked the place clean." Himura smiled fondly. "One of our better days."
"Right. So our client paid good money to our superiors to get escorts to Kinehdin trying to find artifacts and relics..."
"That we already stolen!" Himura connected the dots. "So she basically scammed herself into paying extra for what amounts to tourism of her own homeland? He-heee~"
"Exactly. That and we get to keep an eye on her to make sure she doesn't cause any trouble in our territory. So try to pretend to be professional on the job, and don't brag about that expedition either. The military can use the money since our borders are constantly deprived of resources."
" But some of the resources are going toward borders of nations that aren't aggressive with us." Himura whined off-hand, as if he resented the logic of the higher-ups.
"That IS true, although only a tiny percentage compared to the rest. The Kublak have had a brotherly blood-bond with us for ages, and the Caelts aren't picking fights with us, but we have to guard the borders in those areas from smugglers and bandits all the same. The vast majority of our resources goes to protect ourselves from Tierce, Aravin and Saladin. Also against Naranja, but they are pirates and our nation is mostly landlocked with only some inlets connecting to their seas, so the resources needed to defend against them are also comparatively small."
Robin was exceedingly patient about going over the details for the expat who switched alliegence to Wodanaz. He was intelligent enough to understand things explained to him the first time, but Wodanaz was not his place of birth and it is a big place.

Himura nodded with a mild degree of satisfaction from the explanation, walking the road with Robin in silence... until one late thought occurred to him.

"What if our client actually finds something though? In the ruins?"
"...We'll deal with that when and if the time comes."

It was only shortly after that time frame when the pair caught sight of the caravan and approached it cautiously, although halfway through they saw that some of the other people with the caravan were fellow Wodanaz. Himura just walked alongside Robin without paying much attention to his fellow citizens, and Robin only slightly bowed her head in mild acknowledgement toward them before stopping several sword and ax lengths from their employer and her bodyguards. Coincidentally, this range was good for herself, an archer, if trouble stirred between them.

"Shall I assume your name is Morgan? The Wodanaz military delgated me and my partner here as your escorts to the crash site of Kinehdin during your stay here. I am Robin and this is Himura." The black knight spoke courteously but firmly in her practiced manly voice.
"Forgive me for not unveiling my face. Terrible skin condition." Robin added as she explained her disguised look with the excuse/lie that helped her stay respected in the military for several years.

DanteFalcon 03-13-2016 08:44 AM

"None of ya business, we pay the money, you get us there." Apparently Vanessa was brought along for her fantastic public relations skills.

"Don't mind her, she just hates....actually when are you in a good mood?" The mage smiled impishly to Vanessa and then looked back to Nye and Dro. "It's likely there aren't many Kine still there, from what I've gathered most have moved out. I have two reasons to go there. One is investigative. There's an oddity in the story of Princess Mirianna's betrayal that I'd like to look into. Secondly, and on the more lucrative front, I'd like to see if I can open the mysterious locked door in the remains of the palace. I'm more interested in what's inside and any clues as to what happened as opposed to anything of lucrative value so if that is successful then I expect most everything of value will be included in the fees of all those who came to help."

She looked past Nye and Dro to the coming pair. "Ah, I was expecting this duo. More of your countrymen to the cause." Morgan waved to them. "You found us alright, I'm glad you didn't get lost on the way here!" She said that without a hint of irony, as if she was actually concerned about the duo getting lost. "So we should be waiting on one more then, a Caelt actually." She hopped slightly as she said Caelt and Vanessa put a hand on her shoulder.

"Ya aren't allowed to give that poor woman a flying hug every time ya see her just cause her clothes have that much wool on them. She's likely to sic her lightning spirits on you if ya do that again."
"Of course not. It's cause she's a Caelt and thus so big, aaaaand it's so fluffy. She can take it. She laughed last time. I think. I can take a few shocks here and there."

Overcast 03-14-2016 12:36 PM

The pair didn't seem particularly surprised or offended by Vanessa's answer, and to be fair Morgan's was just a detail oriented version of the mission already presented so if their employers were hiding anything it still wasn't very apparent.

They were gonna give these guys a light 7 on the employers list for now. Evaluation pending.

The arrival of the new pair though definitely set off a cringe across the both of them, and their employers could see it but they made a point of keeping their distaste away from the fucking Nationals. Former bandits and currently mercenaries with no set loyalties to speak of the pair had had more than their fair share of bad spots with the national army of Wodnaz.

They turned in relative unison to look at the new arrivals, and if there was any good blood they could have garnered with Robin by acknowledging her nod they weren't showing it. It was obvious to just about everyone there was no real kinship between them and if anything Dro and Nye were more suspicious of those two than their employers. Still. They kept quiet about it.

Relm Zephyrous 03-15-2016 02:31 AM

Erika arrived almost as if from the air itself, stepping out from around the halted caravan. Modest bags in tow, soundless in steps, a peaceful eye of the storm. Her outfit gave off the crackling appearance of being alive, probably because her outfit was presently in the state of being alive.

“Mighty bad weather we’re having right now, isn’t it?” Erika mused to herself as Morgan hopped all over her. This time she was expecting the inevitable snugglytackles, and did a sweeping motion to scoop the girl onto her back, all bundled up in the fluffiness like a backpack. “Good news though, it’s looking like it’ll get better in about an hour or so. Real torrential downpour, clouds are pretty full.”

The sky was already a little bit grey, and she seemed pleased by the steadily approaching rain. Erika held out a hand, appreciating the single drop of water that fell upon it. “So tell me, who are these people you’re with? Expecting to ‘do business’ with anybody on this trip? I’ve still got some aggression I need to let loose.”

”Name’s Erika, by the way, incase any of y’all care.” This was in a louder tone, unlike the quieter tone used before so as not to thunderclap Morgan’s ear off.

DanteFalcon 03-18-2016 08:11 AM

The sight of Erika elicited what could only be described as a squeal from Morgan as she jumped at the much taller Caelt and very quickly found herself embedded in the woman's wooly clothes, her feet dangling about a foot off the ground. The lightning spirits within the clothes who were not particularly pleased with their sudden roommate shocked and sparked at Morgan who didn't seem to particularly notice the light show going on around her.

"Finally, that should be all of em." Vanessa went to the caravan and unlocked a chest on the back throwing each person a pouch of gold coins. "Five thousand in each, half of the agreed on fee. The other half will be distributed after the mission is complete."

Gold was of questionable value to the group in question. While still heavily used in Aravin, Saladin, Tierce, and Naranja, Wodanaz and Caelt had less use for the metal. Wodanaz itself had plenty of mountains and hills to mine giving it an ample supply of most precious metals including gold. Gold also had very few usable properties outside of ceremonial gear which was almost never used or even made in Wodanaz regardless because it wasn't usable. However, when dealing with most of the more money driven economies having some squirreled away certainly helped, and travelling merchants almost exclusively use the shining metal.

Caelt used it even less, given the difficult terrain of their homelands there were few merchant caravans that passed through and the reclusive people had very dealings with the outside world. Citizens had been their most common visitor before the nation's fall simply due to the ease of riding a pegasus from above, avoiding the harsh slopes that decorate the mountain people's countryside. However, gold coins made a good form of candy for thunder spirits at least, appeasing their childlike natures for a time.

Vanessa locked the chest back up looking out at the group and the still giggling Morgan hanging onto Erika, trying and failing not to roll her eyes at their employer. "Any more questions or shall we get this ship sailin?" There were no sails or boats involved in the expedition. Naranjans were known for having hard times expressing certain terms in non-nautical ways.

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