The dark heart of desire.

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Arelith Gold Supporter
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The dark heart of desire.

Post by godhand- » Sun Oct 17, 2021 1:11 am

It was bright outside in the town square as the sun crested the rooftops to the east; the wind gently dispersing the morning fog. The serenity of the quiet square this early in the morning was a far cry from the dimly lit room filled with dense smoke and rowdy patrons of his preferred place to discuss business, the lighthouse tavern. Squinting into the sunrise, he saw his contact had arrived; He put out his cigarette and rinsed his mouth with whiskey, before sliding his mask on.

As his feet carried him across the cobblestone closer to his contact, his gaze focused on the tall dark-skinned elf, paying a keen attention to his features. His contact had unusually broad shoulders for an elf, sporting ripped muscles, bulging under the tension of the weight of the maul heft over his shoulder.
The size of the contact had made his heart skip a beat, and his mind had begun racing. Was this a setup? Had this man been sent to kill him? Or had he come seeking revenge for another job?
He kept walking forwards, taking a deep calming breath as he edged closer. It was time to work, he couldn't get caught up in his own fears in that moment, he had to be present, convincing, confident.
He stopped momentarily by the fountain in centre of the square, taking a moment to wash his hands in the water cascading from the fountain. The sound of running water relieved his tension, it always had.

"Good morning." the words left his lips effortlessly, as he flicked the droplets of water from his hands.
"A beautiful morning indeed." His contact returned the greeting, taking a seat facing the fountain.

Around the courtyard the stirrings of the rest of the town could be heard, They were waking, getting ready to start their day.

"I must admit...." He paused as he lowered himself onto the stone seat next to his contact. "...You have me curious as to what a man of your stature seeks."
"Something to sate my gluttony." The elf's voice resounded in a heavy baritone.

His mask belied his surprise at the response. It was short, sharp, and... unexpectedly honest.

"And what object could possibly satisfy the gluttony of a man who wears the finest furs, exquisite elven-craft chain, a man whose head is adorned with a crown?" It was not lost on him that his contact wore chain-link armor imbued with moon-craft runes, A privilege reserved for only those of royal lineage.
"Seeing something taken from someone who has much." The elf responded.

"So it is pleasure in another's misfortune you seek, as you observe their sufferance from afar?" He asked
"To spread loss and strife, for one cannot spread loss, without the taking of things." the elf's savage appearance and stoic demeanour masked his intentions and emotions well.

There was something different about this contact; Usually people came to him for revenge, their motivations and targets clear. He had not expected this mountain of an elf speak with such tact and subtlety.

He took a moment to think as two town-guards turned the corner from the barracks marching along their patrol route, The metal plates of their greaves clanking along the stones beneath their feet as they walked past.
It was not long until the rest of the town would be out and about, He had to be quick in his conversation.

"Tell me, friend, Who has hurt you so that you wish me to take from them?" His question more direct, in an effort to save time.
"They've not hurt me! I just wish to know what treasures they hide atop their tower." The slightest crack in the elves demeanour, giving a glimpse into his emotions and desires.

Few else would have picked up on it, but it was there. It was the only reason he was still alive, He could read people better than most, and apply leverage into cracks to open them up in ways others couldn't perceive.

"Not all wounds are physical in nature. Anger is manifest from a wound most subtle, not visible to the naked eye... In here..." His hand moves from his lap, and gently tapped on the elves left chest with his index and middle finger as he continued "... I do not dabble in the how or the why of your pain, that is not my place. I can, however, provide that which you seek; but first i must know how much you're willing to commit for it."

In that exact moment the elf had been confronted with the truth of his own desires and emotions, the question had challenged him. The elf paused, looking at him for a moment before he spoke.
"Therein lies the question... I know the cost, but is it worth it? For something I don't even know what it is, or if it even exists."

"And thus, the question of the wound becomes ever-more relevant..." resting his hands on his knees, he stood up slowly. Turning to the elf still seated beside him. "... Once you've searched within and found your answer, You know how to contact me."
Cortex wrote: Addendum, the immediate above post by godhand is wrong in about every aspect, as were most of his other posts.

Arelith Gold Supporter
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Into the heart of darkness - Pt.1

Post by godhand- » Tue Dec 28, 2021 2:36 am

The inside of the manor was still, silent, it was pitch black, were it not for his enchanted vision he would not be able to see his hand in front of his face, let alone the glimmering shine of anything valuable. Most of his jobs were undertaken on the surface, so he'd be able to take in the grandiosity of the manor as he went; This was in the undercity, and the mark was practically a palace, but in the dark you wouldn't know.
"How do drow live like this, can't see a damned thing." He whispered quietly to himself.

There was only one room he had left to check, The master bedroom. He approached the door, and took a moment to appreciate the craftmanship that went into it. It was stunning; the drow truly spared no expense in decorating their living space.
The door itself was a sculpture set in to display the Matron that resided within; The space around the edge was decorated with spiderweb motifs, elegant but subtle, and all leading the attention towards the beautiful drowess, standing triumphantly in regal poise. Her obsidian figure was barely covered by her hair; an immaculate cascade of pristine white marble covering her voluptuous body to give the mural a modicum of modesty.
"Its a shame its too dark for anyone to appreciate the damned thing." He mused.

He spent a minute working the lock on the door before the latch mechanism released with a soft clunk, a soft breeze pulled the door open ominously from the inside; The feel of the breeze sent shivers down his spine. Edging slowly forward, he peered into the room. Among all the lavish and decadent furniture and decorations, one thing caught his eye, a large opening, a window. He approached slowly and he looked out into the darkness... His jaw dropped when he to realised the nothingness he was looking at was in fact, not nothing, but a giant underground cavern filled with water, a private lake for the Matron of the house.
He was contemplating going for a swim until he spied the main reason he came.

"Well i'll be.... The old dog was right!" He was surprised, Often times the items he was paid to acquire didn't even exist. This one did.

He quickly retrieved a silk cloth from his pack, and went about wrapping up the small hand-held mirror, gilded with delicate platinum gold, being careful as to not look into the mirror at himself. If the stories were true he couldn't risk it.
He tucked it away and crept slowly towards the door, he took one last look around the room, looking for anything of value that he could fit in his bag....


He'd made it in and out of the manor without incident. Now he just had to cross the undercity to get back to the surface. He'd been to the undercity a few times, and had a rough idea of the lay of the land. He knew ahead of time which streets he was going to take to get in and out, and he begun to make his way towards the eastern quarter of the city.
"A job well done." He chuckled softly to himself, the weight of his haul tugged at his shoulders as he navigated the dark streets.

"Hold!" A voice cried out from behind him.
"Shit!" He murmured quietly, turning to see three dark figures had followed him into a side street. He took a deep breath and contemplated his options.

The figures approached him, as they approached he could see that it was three drow in dark robes

"What can i do for you?" He was as confident as always, playing the part he needed to be in that moment.
"Tch.... You're not from around here, are you?" The drow in the centre responded almost instantly, a glint of excitement flashed in his lilac eyes.

"What gave it away?" He didn't need to ask, he knew his accent still needed work, it was too thick to be a local. He was stalling for time.
"I'm Selakiir of the Ra'val, now show me your papers please." The drow spoke a firm tone, and lifted up the sides of his cloak, revealing two sheathed daggers. A criss-cross of scars were scattered across his rugged and masculine face, leaving no doubt that the he was no stranger to a lifestyle of violence.

"Ah, i don't think so." His heart began to race, he was running low on options in what was possibly a worst case scenario unfolding.
"I wasn't asking." Selakiir moved his hands to his daggers, taking a firm grip their leather hilt.
"I see... let me get those papers for you then."

He slowly dropped to one knee, carefully slinging his backpack off his back bringing it in front of him, making sure not to make a noise. He couldn't let them find out what he had in his bag, he would certainly be slain where he stood for the contents alone. Opening a pocket on the side of the bag, he could feel the tremors in his hands as he retrieved a folded piece of paper and opened it up, looking at it for a long moment. He took a deep contemplating breath, then folded it back up again.
He stood up, lumbering his bag onto his back again before handing the papers to the drow; Selakiirs obsidian hand reaching out to snatch the folded note out of his hands.

Selakiirs smouldering eyes focused on the paper as he unfolded it; a momentary lapse in concentration in all three of the drow standing before him as was all he needed. He knew it would take a few seconds for them to realise the meaning of what was written on the note... The address of the Manor he'd just hit. He turned and ran, faster than he'd ever ran in his life, with each step his feet pounding the rocky surface underneath him, and for each step, a corresponding breath both exhilarating and terrifying as his lungs were beginning to feel like they wanted to burst as the adrenaline coursed through his veins.

He wasn't paying attention to where he was going, but he was going there real fast, with three drow hot on his heels chasing him. He couldn't keep this pace up, he had to think quick on his feet... As he turned onto a main street he weaved through the busy street, a crowd of various evil and strange denizens of the undercity, he ducked into a sidestreet and quickly threw a pouch of disappearing dust over himself.

The dust had barely finished covering him when he saw Selakiir blast right past him at full speed with the other two drow in tow, only inches away from the wall he stood hidden against. Quickly, he began to double back the way he came until he was certain he'd lost his pursuers.

He was panting vigorously when he made it to the gondolier. While he rummaged through his pockets for some coin to pay the man, he used the time to let out a loud sigh of relief followed by a series of deep breaths. His face finally began to relax. He started laughing, a huge release of nerves that he managed to get away.

"Good thinking, that went better than i expected." The words hadn't even finished leaving his lips when a hand landed on his shoulder.
He turned, and the last thing he saw was Selakiirs fist approaching with rapid velocity towards his face.
Cortex wrote: Addendum, the immediate above post by godhand is wrong in about every aspect, as were most of his other posts.

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