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Forums > Fantasy Roleplay Forum > The Treasure Lamp 2.0 (closed)

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Damian lapsed into thought for several seconds. He had vaguely heard of a few criminal organizations in Cae'bril, but this "Black Lense" wasn't among them. The mage shook his head slowly, looking back at Katlina. "That name doesn't sound familiar to me either, unfortunately," he said, an apologetic note in his voice. "Who are they?" he asked, echoing Lance's question.

Apparently she had only stirred up questions, rather than answering any of her own. Maybe she shouldn't have brought it up... but if they were to be working together, they should probably be aware. Would they be working together? Kat flicked her gaze around, wondering where Kaito had gotten to, wishing to get the meeting over with, or at least begin. She was no stranger to the waiting game, but something about this upcoming meeting was making her more antsy than usual - what if she botched it?

"The Black Lense, from what I've heard, is a group that formed during Arkaria's war and they dabble in banditry, prostitution, slave rings and the like. They may also have ties with the rebels." She turned back toward the other two as she answered, her eyes sweeping them one more time before scanning the area again, trying to make it seem like she wasn't just fidgeting.

Damian lapsed into thought again. "Sounds like a veritable hive of scum and villainy," he said. He thought a bit more. "And if they do in fact have ties to the usurping forces...well, that would certainly make things more interesting." He had only been to Arkaria once before. Almost five years previously, Aiƫnon had taken him to the Arkarian seaside to celebrate his 70th birthday. Even though the two of them had been there for several days, he had heard no talk of the Black Lense.

It was then the mage looked at Katlina. He saw her eyes moving back and forth between him and Lance and then scanning the area around them. He also saw her fidgeting somewhat. "Is something bothering you, Katlina?" Damian asked her, a note of friendly concern in his voice.

Releasing a soft breath, Kat bit her lower lip and returned her stormy hues to Damian, weighing her response as if unsure to be honest or not, but she shied alway from outright lies. Honesty was the best policy, especially when trying to breed friendly feelings. It was an oddity of hers, given her rather shady inclinations.

"Truth be told, " she finally admitted in a softly rueful tone, "I hate meetings like this, when I feel like I must make a good first impression. I'm never good at introductions, so I'm ready to get this one over with." She didn't add just how much she hoped it went well, nor how much she needed to be accepted into the family. Would this be her last chance at actually having one? She recalled the words Kaito had spoken of in reference to the Treasure Lamp, how close they all were. She wanted that now more than ever.

She could still see it. She could still see the image of him rocking back on the two hind legs of the chair that she currently sat upon, his eyes trailing upward thoughtfully.

The elf's hands were currently folded on her lap, an arrow resting comfortably in her grasp. Today was the day, and it seemed now more than ever that the realization of what she was about to do came crashing over her. She didn't want to let them go. Never mind that it seemed that she too had brought a candidate of the table, but it hurt. Just the thought of going through with it seemed to hurt.

The door to the bedroom opened, and her violet eyes looked up to see a tall figure with deep mauve skin and striking blue hair. his near-neon green eyes contrasted the rest of his palette, and they fell upon her. "'Ey," he greeted her, stepping partway through the door. He too seemed to pause, looking around at the bedroom that for the past six months had been empty aside from its current visitors. The emptiness had haunted him as well. "How th' hell'd I know ya'd be 'ere?" he mused softly, quietly walking up to her. He was about to plop himself down on the bed, near the unstrung bow that hung just above its headboard. He suddenly paused, thinking better of it and simply leaned against the desk instead. "Y'know, it's time."

"I know." Her voice was small, and she held the arrow just a mite tighter. "Kai, I don't know if I can." The sound from her seemed to almost crumple, and by the time she had reached the last few words it was barely a whisper. "It feels like we're replacing them."

Kai gave her a sharp look, one that likely betrayed his own stab of guilt, but after a moment he instantly forgave her, the instinctive dagger-stare melting away with the quickly dying flicker of hostility. The Fae stepped closer to her, placing both his hands on her shoulders, assuring that she was facing him. "We are not. Replacin' 'em," he said firmly, his own voice heavy. "Don' say that. We doin' this ta keep it all alive. This bis'ness. Our legacy. Their legacy."

There was a long silence from the elf, in which she kept her eyes downcast. "Okay," she replied, collecting herself as Kai allowed his hands to slip away from her shoulders. "Where are the others?"

"Upstairs, waitin' on you," he cocked a thumb towards the door as the elf rose from her seat, pausing only to take another long look at the room's decor before walking out with the Fae.



Katlina, Damian, and Lance would notice when the back door to the shop would open, and five hooded, masked, and cloaked figures of varying heights would file out. Brown, mottled green, black, royal blue, and orange. The brown-cloaked figure in particular stepped forward ahead of the others to greet the three by the stables. Zephyr, the large blue bird that sat within the stable's confines, looked up at the figure as she approached, emitting a caw.

About ten paces away from the newcomers, the slender figure paused. "Thank you for coming," she stated simply, her statements neutral. "I'm Xyla, and I'm the leader of the Treasure Lamp. We are, in essence, a small guild, yet, a very effective one. Our base is the shop here before you, but we often travel all over Veritae to accomplish our ends." Her violet eyes looked at each of them in turn. "You are all here because you have met with one of us, and we have deemed you trustworthy enough to join our endeavors. And we have yet another measure in place to assure that you are who you present yourself as." She glanced back at the others. "Sparrow?"

One of the taller figures, this one in mottled green, stepped up aside Xyla. His neon-green eyes crinkled slightly in what seemed like a smile of greeting towards Katlina in particular. "What's m'name, Kat?" he asked, relaxed and even a bit jovial.

Lance listened and nodded to the other two speak about the 'Black Lense'. He didn't have much to say on the matter given his lack of experience with bandits and mercenaries, but he was still listening attentively to the two. He wondered how much longer it would be until the others had arrived as he longed in a way to see the Doppler he had befriended once more.

Lance looked over when the back door opened, eyeing the figures that walked out, not with suspicion, but with curiosity. He nodded as the group approached.This is it, he said in his mind. He was both excited and nervous at the same time as the brown-cloaked figure introduced herself. He stayed patient and respectfully silent though as the whole procession went on.

Soon after she finished speaking to Damian, a door just within her line of sight slid open as it heralded the coming figures. It seemed a somber and serious scene, the figures quiet until the one in mottled brown stepped forward to speak. Katlina's posture, relaxed but straight, would seem to the careful observer for the moment perhaps too relaxed, as if she had to concentrate to keep it that way, her eyes slightly narrowed as they slid over each figure, lingering on the one in mottled green hues.

As Sparrow stepped forward to join the one who named herself Xyla, Kat's lips curved upward in a soft smile. When he spoke directly to her, his distinctive way of speaking thawed her nerves a bit and she took a step forward as well. First she glanced to Xyla and slowly dipped her head to the woman, respect evident in the gesture, before she looked to Sparrow. "Your name, earth flyer, is Kaito." Was anything else expected of her? Some sort of ritual or phrase she should say? Katlina didn't know, and felt it best to keep things simple for the time being. With a nod to the male fae, she offer one more smile. "Good to see you again."

Sparrow, or Kaito as he had now been otherwise named, nodded at Kat in return. "An right'cha are." He seemed satisfied with whatever requirement had been met, but at some unspoken note glanced at Lance, following Xyla's own gaze.

There was a moment of silence as she glanced back at the rest of the hooded figures, and another moment passed before she turned back to Lance. There almost seemed to be a film of doubt that coated those violet hues. She studied the gunmage before she at last spoke.

"...who are you?" The pointed question was low, not quite accusatory, but with a note of confrontation. "Why are you here?" She took a step closer to Lance, already reaching back to lightly grasp the bronze staff fastened beneath her cloak in what could only be interpreted as a subtle, threatening gesture.

"Who sent you?"

Lance nodded as Kaito and Katlina had their exchange, looking among the hooded figures. He waited and realized the doppler wasn't there as Kaito had been with Katlina.

He felt on edge as Xyla's gaze rested upon him with her motions. He fell silent and waited for her words before he replied. "Indomiel, the shifter." He replied, shifting slightly. "He is the one who sent me here." Lance answered, not letting his inner tension show through his calm expression and stance.

The name seemed to elicit a stunned silence from Xyla, as well as the rest of the members of the Treasure Lamp. Sparrow and Xyla glanced at each other, each shocked and torn, and the other members began to murmur among themselves. Another couple of moments passed before the grip on the bronze staff only grew tighter, although it did not move. Those eyes now were flooded with roiling emotion, the violet gaze against Lance now piercing daggers.

"Where..." her voice faltered, wavering a little, still somewhat firm yet losing a tinge of its calmer and cooler edge. "Then where is he? Why isn't he with you?" She seemed to be slowly stirred into anger with each pointed question. "Why did you leave him?" After a moment, her gaze faltered, dropping away for just a moment before they returned with much less hostile intensity, waiting for his answer as she caught herself.

Indomiel...it had been long enough since he vanished. No doubt he still grieved, as they all did. But the package at the doorstep on that day had stung him so much harsher.

Lance took a step back as Xyla spoke with seemingly harsher words. Ita not like he had wanted to leave him, but he was told to. He shook his head and regained composure before he spoke to Xyla and the other cloaked figures.

"Mountains of Oberon." He replied solemnly. "He told me to go and said we would meet again..." Lance answered in full. "I hoped I would have seen him again when I arrived here... It appears that's not the case..." He spoke in a tone that was apparent that Lance had wanted to see Indomiel again.

Xyla's other fist clenched, as her first instinct was rage. Rage with the backing of such pain. There was only one place he could've gone there. Ever since, again and again, she had insisted that they never go back to that wretched peak. It had been her mistake, and their downfall. And even so, he had still gone back, for Source knows what premise. Revenge, maybe. Likely. And yet...

Sparrow's long fingers brushed lightly against the back of her forearm, a very subtle motion. He was more than aware of the struggle. It afflicted them all. Yet, third to perhaps...well...no, he was no longer third or second for that matter. He was probably the one out of all of them able to keep the clearest head, in light of what had happened to them.

Beneath the shelter of her mask, Xyla bit her lip at the reminder to calm down. She had built this place from the ground up. It was no surprise that at such a harsh loss, she was still so...emotional about it. Another loss upon another loss. Even still, even from whatever visions of delusion or grandeur he seemed to be chasing, Indomiel was... still looking out for the rest of them. He knew the date and time as well as any of them did. And like Sparrow and herself, he had trusted Lance enough with his name as his confirmation...

Slowly, she released her fist, the rage filtering away from her eyes. "...well, he trusted you enough to send you here, and I trust his judgment...we can only hope that he's alright." Her voice was soft in her defeated acceptance. She averted her eyes for a moment, before at last turning her attention to Damian. He had seen her unfiltered before, and so seeing it again must have been of no surprise to him. The idea made her uneasy.

"And, last but not least...what is my name, Damian?"

Damian heard Lance mention the Mountains of Oberon, and saw Xyla's fist clench. Her anger, pain, and grief became apparent to him. He had a feeling he knew what had crossed her mind when Lance had told her where he had last seen Indomiel; indeed, almost nothing else he could think of could garner a reaction like that. Having been a voracious reader and having been taught geography by his Mentor, he knew that the Mountains of Oberon were in the Central-Northern region of AĆ«steshire. So that's where that happened, he thought to himself, trying not to let his sympathy for her show. She still didn't know that he knew what had happened to her companions, and he figured it would be wise to keep it that way for the time being.

He saw Xyla release her fist and heard the defeat in her voice. His heart started hurting for her, but he still kept the sympathy off his face. However, unbeknownst to him, his body language shifted almost imperceptibly. Anyway, he swallowed and set his dark navy eyes on the violet ones behind Xyla's mask, his gaze resolute. He took a deep breath before speaking to her in Elvish. "Ayura," he said. "Your name is Ayura."

After the attention had been shifted to the two males who'd arrived just before Kat, she felt a bit of the tension coiled in her lithe body drain a bit. As Xyla tensed in anger, her eyes narrowed some, curiosity piqued for a moment. Kaito's subtle gesture didn't escape her and for a moment she felt an inward pause, as if a hint of something... some emotion, was nudging at the back of her mind, yet she didn't yet fully recognize it. The two were obviously close.

Pulling her gaze away, Kat didn't realize her lips had turned downward in the barest of frowns before she looked to Damian in a bit of surprise as the man spoke in Elvish. She picked up the word Ayura, which must have been the name Xyla was looking for. Where had Damian picked up elvish? Did he have elvish blood? Studying the man more closely now, Kat tried to pick up any defining elven features, but he seemed human, like her. Perhaps he was a scholar? Most ordinary folk didn't learn more than one language, if their paths were not diverse enough to travel where they would need to speak more than one. Most didn't have the means for tutelage. Kat had done her best to help some of those in the worst need... with her own methods of course, but her work was thankless, and seemed only a soothing drop in the ocean of poverty.

Kat nearly rolled her eyes at the show of knowledge to go along with his obvious affluence, yet he'd seemed kind, so she kept her face neutral as she waited to see what was to come, arms crossed over her breast, with one hand tugging softly on the tip of her mahogany hued braid.

Xyla, or Ayura as she had now been identified, simply nodded. "...now that that's out of the way, welcome, to all of you, really. Let's head inside. We can talk more about specifics." She turned away towards the rest of the other hooded figures. Gods, she really needed to get a grip. These recruits didn't deserve to be tied up in something that they were never involved with. She wished she was better at hiding her emotions.

Sparrow also beckoned Kat, Damian and Lance through the back door where they had all come from. The back room of the shop looked like a simple, wide-open space; there was a small counter lined all around the edged of the room, and the occasional chair sat before the counters. Along the walls were weapons, gemstones, as well as other items that also seemed a bit on the more pragmatic side. Artifacts, harnesses, the occasional extra cloak. Aside from the back door, there were two other doors that had access to this room. One towards what could be assumed to be the front of the shop, and the other to what could be interpreted as a small storage closet. There were two small wooden crates near the door to the shop's front retail area; one with lusterless gems and the other full of bright ones that evidently contained Ichor.

Habitually, the cloaked members of the Treasure Lamp seemed to settle in their preferred spots. The one cloaked in orange gravitated to the back corner, where there were gears and other mechanical scraps on the counter and a small contraption of sorts on the chair aside it. The short young woman in blue hopped up to sit upon the counter itself, while the taller man in black leaned against the counter aside her, leaning his large polearm against the wall. Sparrow stood next to the back door while Xyla stood just off the wall in front of the storage closet, arms crossed, evidently about to make some sort of announcement to them.

"In general, there are a couple of roles that we have here, although they aren't really strict, per se," she explained. "Someone'll usually be in front dealing with the shop, and that'll rotate every now and again. The rest of us can take jobs as we will, together or separate. Eighty percent of the reward is personal, then split with any partners, while the rest goes to a guild fund. Half of store profits go to the guild fund, and the other half gets split among everyone."

"Any questions to start off, before we all introduce ourselves a bit more officially?" she glanced around at everyone in turn.

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Forums > Fantasy Roleplay Forum > The Treasure Lamp 2.0 (closed)