Ravnica

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Annasiel
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Ravnica

Post by Annasiel » Fri Oct 19, 2018 5:16 am

Aris knelt in the corner of the cramped, rusting cage. Her knees ached, the thin fabric of her skirt doing little to protect them from the rocky soil, but it was the least of her pains. In a way, it helped her ignore the rest. Ignore the bruises, ignore the cut beneath her eye, ignore the scuffs on her elbows.

Ignore the fact she was probably going to die soon.

The elf shifted, taking a moment to pull her torn sleeve back up her arm. She wasn't exactly afraid of dying. Not in the traditional sense. After all, the Conclave taught of death as quiet sleep, a release from worldly woes. All spirits find peace in Mat'Selesnya's embrace. Far worse to find oneself captive of Orzhov priests or Golgari shamans, where sacred death, however longed for, would be desecrated by unholy magics. The Rakdos would kill her once they'd had their fun, but they would do no more beyond. She had faith. She would find peace beyond.

But if that were true, then why did she find the thought of it so terrifying? Missionaries knew the risks of their work, knew they often faced great sacrifice for the good of the Conclave as a whole. It was a simple thing to accept when she'd first taken on the mantle. But now, when faced with the prospect of inevitable pain and end, she felt sick, terrified, uncertain. That she felt so made her feel even sicker.

"Goddess, guide my spirit. Give me the faith and courage to do as I must." She didn't know how many times she'd repeated the prayer, whispered so as not to draw any revelers' attention, hoping each time it would help her feel better, somehow. "Protect me from evil, if it is your will. If you would have me face evil, be it a sacrifice in the name of the growth of us all."

Ralavik was probably dead already. He'd been taken away from her, when she was captured. It had taken five men to subdue him, and even then, he continued to draw blood. Aris had not fought back. If she had, her injuries might have been worse, or she might have been killed on the spot.

You should have tried. Death is peace.

She shook her head, steadying herself to begin another prayer. However, her vigil was interrupted by the chatter of approaching voices. Was it time? It had been long enough, certainly. An hour, maybe more, spent with only her thoughts and the bars of her cage for company. Shifting off of her knees, Aris turned to face the flap of the tent, drawing her legs up to her chest. She hugged them tightly. She wasn't quite ready to die - she had yet to make peace with that. Silently, the elf wished they weren't coming for her.
I look in the water and fear what I see
I know it's no stranger but I know it's not me
My life is a lie that was uttered in jest
If I can't change at all, let me rest

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Someguy500
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Re: Ravnica

Post by Someguy500 » Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:47 pm

Karte Haunn, professional mind-agent of the tenth guild and genius prodigy, had been captured by a band of roving lunatics. He swirled the thought around his head, and no matter how he spun it, it remained bitter. Damned hooligans. It would've been too much to ask for them to be a bit more civilized and predictable, apparently. A meaty hand was gripping the cloaked man by the scruff of his neck, its owner hauling him toward the massive circus tent. His own hands and legs were held together behind his back with twine and wire. He tried to stay limp, play at being beat senseless. It wasn't hard, considering he almost had been. The brute's companions joked and jeered as they pulled their prize to a small tent beside.

Karte could barely feel his fingers, and his vision swam in and out of focus. None of this was supposed to happen. The plan itself, from infiltration to execution to exit were flawless; perfection wasn't supposed to fail like this. It made no sense when some raving loon thought it would be fun to grab the nearest body as a prisoner. What a joke. He forced himself not to grimace. The agent had always disliked the Rakdos and their... crazed spontaneity. It made compromises in his work very tempting. Maybe it was fitting, then, that they'd be the ones to do him in.

The cultist, egged on by his two friends to get it over with, unlocked the cage. He pulled open the bolt and opened the gate, eliciting a groan from the aged metal. Karte felt himself launched for a moment before he hit the ground, and metal against metal rang as the cage was slammed closed. The sound of a deadbolt being shunted into place drove home the fact that he was really trapped now. One of the tagalongs made a gesture with her hand, but it wasn't anything magical as far as he could tell. She rasped something about having fun together before sauntering off. Good, they were leaving him alone. He allowed himself a little time to take stock of his surroundings. The cage was rusted iron, almost large enough to stand up straight in. The bars were thick, beyond the ability of any crowbar or file to get through. The lock was a deadbolt and padlock, which he could work with. And there was another captive here too. He regarded the other captive, inwardly cursing the fact that his own face was in clear view.
Annasiel wrote:"She's the type of person that if you slap her butt, she'll slap yours harder."

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Re: Ravnica

Post by Annasiel » Tue Oct 23, 2018 2:19 am

Another poor soul, captured in the Demon-worshipers' clutches. Aris offered the man a weary smile. He looked rough, someone who had lived a dangerous, stressful life, and surely he thought this was the culmination of it. While she didn't think she could offer him what he wanted - what they both wanted - a friendly face would ease the time. Goddess knew it would ease hers.

"Hello, friend," she whispered, sliding closer to him. Anxiously, she glanced towards the flap of the tent. Gone. Doubtless off in some rave, wasting their lives thriving off of gluttony and pain. A disgusting lifestyle. She knew she should sympathize for them, or at least pity them, but all she could feel at the moment was contempt and fear. Those were dangerous emotions. They chilled the spirit to the core, and left the noble quelling, roiling, running in terror or destroying out of spite. Neither were very holy. Refusing to focus on the source of such terrible feelings, she returned her attention to the man.

"You're bound." They hadn't thought it necessary to tie her own wrists, perhaps, or a different group with different whims had caught him. She nodded at the twine. "I can try to undo that, if it would make things more comfortable. I have experience undoing knots - sewing, you know."

She was surprised at the lack of fear in her voice. Talking about something familiar helped ground her, and having another person here made her feel a little more safe. It felt a bit guilty, being grateful for another prisoner, since he would end up in the same place as she. Another thing to ignore thinking about.
I look in the water and fear what I see
I know it's no stranger but I know it's not me
My life is a lie that was uttered in jest
If I can't change at all, let me rest

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Re: Ravnica

Post by Someguy500 » Sun Oct 28, 2018 10:28 am

An elf, robed in white and shades of green, wearing the emblem of the Selesnyan Conclave. It made sense. They did send pilgrims to other territories, Rakdos in particular. Whoever she was, she gave Karte a sympathetic smile, probably trying to ease his worries. She got closer, with a hushed "hello, friend," before checking outside. The goons were already far enough away, by the looks of it, since she offered to remove his bindings. For now, it'd be better to play along while she was ignorant of who he was aligned with. Who knows what she might do if she found out he was an enemy of her guild.

He sat up with some difficulty and nodded with gratitude. "That would be good, thank you." His voice was weak, not from too much use but rather a lack thereof. To be fair, it may have been the beatings. Even as his mouth said those words, his heart wasn't all in it, and his mind was somewhere else. He thought about the roads he was dragged on, possible hiding places, plotting a limited map of the area. Karte fully planned to escape this place, even if he was to finish the job that landed him here. Especially if he was to finish the job. His eyes scanned the cage, trying to identify any possible tools to help him break out.
Annasiel wrote:"She's the type of person that if you slap her butt, she'll slap yours harder."

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Re: Ravnica

Post by Annasiel » Mon Oct 29, 2018 1:31 am

"Alright. Give me a moment."

It took Aris a few tries, but she managed to undo the gnarled knot, twisting the length of twine off the man's wrists. That had to feel better - a small comfort. She nodded her head and tossed the strand aside.

"There we go," she said, her voice cracking for a moment. The surge of confidence was already dwindling. Slowly, she lowered herself to the floor, sliding back into her corner of the cage. "So, what brings you here? Not the sort of place people just wander into."

A thought struck her. Certainly not true, not with the way he was dressed, the way he acted, but a terrible thought nonetheless. She swallowed.

"You're not one of them... yes?" She smiled nervously.
I look in the water and fear what I see
I know it's no stranger but I know it's not me
My life is a lie that was uttered in jest
If I can't change at all, let me rest

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Someguy500
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Re: Ravnica

Post by Someguy500 » Wed Nov 07, 2018 6:50 am

Karte rolled his wrists experimentally, glad for the added dexterity. He raised an eyebrow at the accusation, but dismissed it as frivolous.

"And what gives you that impression?"

As he said this, the shifty figure rummaged inside his clothes to produce a pair of small tools. He inspected them briefly, and sighed in relief after making sure they were still usable. He crept past the woman temporarily sharing his cell, torque wrench in one hand and lockpick in another. The timing was definitely calculated. The best time to escape capture, he reasoned, was when the enemy thought you defeated. He'd be long gone before the cultists searched their inventory for their next sacrifice.

As he got to work putting his tools into place and feeling out the lock, he briefly glanced back at the missionary. It was doubtful that she'd be a threat to him right now, even if she were prepared to die. Karte frowned a mite. He would have to decide what to do with her. For now, he turned his attention back to the lock.
Annasiel wrote:"She's the type of person that if you slap her butt, she'll slap yours harder."

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Re: Ravnica

Post by Annasiel » Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:31 am

"Just... an idle thought, is all," Aris replied. It wasn't blasphemous to wish to preserve the gift of life. Fear was a natural emotion, a product of life from birth, and it was expected for one to want to live as long as possible, without resorting to unholy means. There was nothing wrong with her suspicion towards her fellow captive, with her distaste of the Rakdos horde. One could find fault even while forgiving. Was not forgiveness of sin an admission of judgement in and of itself?

The girl still could not shake the looming sense of hypocrisy, a shade that wrapped its cold fingers around her heart. Instead, she focused on the tools her cellmate had just procured from the folds of his garments, a pair of tools that took a moment for her to recognize. Thief tools. Simple in design, yet she knew well the danger they could pose in the wrong hands. Gifting access to private places, gifting greedy hands locked gold, and gifting children with a fear of dark and two empty masks where loving faces once smiled.

In Mat'Selesnya, all just souls found peace, even if her followers only gave Aris a semblance of the same.

These instruments filled her heart with hope instead of taking hope away. She placed a hand on the man's shoulder, a light touch as if ready to pull back at any moment, her other hand clutched tight to her chest.

"I care not what sins you may have committed with those tools, thief, but if you can free us from this place, I will owe you all I can give."
I look in the water and fear what I see
I know it's no stranger but I know it's not me
My life is a lie that was uttered in jest
If I can't change at all, let me rest

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Someguy500
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Re: Ravnica

Post by Someguy500 » Sun Nov 25, 2018 3:21 pm

No sooner had his pick found purchase on the last pin that Karte heard the elf pipe up again. What she said certainly made things easier, giving him a leg up when dealing with her. The spoken word was rarely binding, barring the prescence of a good lawmage, and the rogue knew this all too well. Still, it was something to work with. But first, he'd have to stay alive, and more to the point, keep her alive too, in order for her to make good on her promise. Turning the faux-key in the lock, it sprang open with a minute click. After pushing the door open a crack to test for any creak of the hinges, he turned back and pulled his scarf, previously tucked in his collar, back up into a mask.

"Then we'd better get going before you can't do much at all."

As he stood up for the first time in the cage, Karte almost doubled over on one foot. The weight of his body elicited a creak of pain from his left leg in protest. A stark contrast from his earlier, unshaken demeanor. He had to find somewhere to hide and recuperate, before it became even more obvious how bad of a shape he was in. He ran his eyes up and down the street, weighing his choices while waiting for his new debtor's response.
Annasiel wrote:"She's the type of person that if you slap her butt, she'll slap yours harder."

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Re: Ravnica

Post by Annasiel » Wed Nov 28, 2018 3:59 am

The door was open. They weren't yet free, of course. An entire camp of revelers lay around them, territory held by the cruelest of the nine guilds, any of which would doubtless capture them again if they brought attention to themselves. Yet, that open door brought a glimmer of hope, and for the first time since she was caught, Aris didn't just wish for escape -- she actively planned for it.

She gave a silent nod to the man's comment, more instinctively than anything else. It wasn't like he could see it. He was focused forward, doubtless alert for Rakdos partygoers returning. As he stepped through the opening, his knee seemed to give, body lurching forward. Aris was beside him in an instant, trying to pull his arm around her shoulder.

Old habits die hard.

"Are you alright? How badly did they hurt you?" she asked in a whisper. Silly, to think a whisper made a difference whether inside or outside the cage, but the hush helped her feel safer.
I look in the water and fear what I see
I know it's no stranger but I know it's not me
My life is a lie that was uttered in jest
If I can't change at all, let me rest

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Someguy500
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Posts: 187
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Re: Ravnica

Post by Someguy500 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 5:01 am

Surprisingly, Karte's arm went around the missionary's shoulder. She was concerned rather than cunning, in the face of his mistake. Good, but he kept his guard up as he answered the question with a nod. He slowly turned to his side and faced her. "I'm fine, but if we don't find somewhere to hide soon I won't be, and neither will you." The agent's tone was stiff, almost a hiss as he said this.

With that, he lifted his arm off the Conclave woman's shoulder and slowly pushed open the cage door. "Close the door behind you," he said, stepping out of the cage. This time, his footfalls landed with more grace, and he quickly regained his composure. As he stood up, he noticed a strap on his leg; a sheath. The people who caught him hadn't taken his dagger either, what a joke. His break was over, and he started making his way back the way he came. His plan was to throw himself into a cellar somewhere and take stock of his injuries there, and he passed a few watering holes while being dragged here. He hoped some of them were being run by guildless folk, and then quickly felt sorry for any guildless who owned a bar in Rakdos territory. Maybe he was getting delirious. As an afterthought, Karte looked behind him to make sure the Conclave woman was still following him.
Annasiel wrote:"She's the type of person that if you slap her butt, she'll slap yours harder."

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