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 No One Mourns the Wicked

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PostSubject: No One Mourns the Wicked   Thu Sep 18, 2008 7:35 am

It was late afternoon in Bella Luna. Jalran was making his way through the marketplace, considering if he should purchase some groceries or something along that line. A figure walked up behind him.

"Hey, Jalran..." the figure said with a sly hiss. "I've been hoping to meet you."

Jalran knew instantly. This was a demon, come to kill him. He kept walking, not tensing up. He knew what to do.

"I've heard alot about you. Humans think you're quite the hero..."

Jalran just kept walking, a stone-faced expression.

"I thought I'd come and see you... get a... souvenir." he said with a smile. Then next instant, that smile was changed to a look of shock and alarm, as Jalran had seized a torch from a passer-by and slammed it into the demon's face.

"Arggh!" The demon staggered over to a ledge, above some other vendors and shoppers. Seizing the opportunity, Jalran kicked the demon in the stomach, causing him to plummet down. Right into a wagon full of manure. The demon scrambled to sit up, looking up at Jalran. Fall hadn't hurt him in the slightest.

But then Jalran threw down the torch. The wagon lit up in seconds, setting the demon on fire. Jalran lost no time. He raced down the steps and grabbed a shotgun from a frightened shopkeeper who had pulled it out.

As the demon tried to run, Jalran took aim and fired. BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!

After several shots, the demon lay dead.

Using manure to dispose of shit. Ironic.

Jalran roughly handed the shotgun back to the shopkeeper. A crowd gathered to look at him and the dead body of the demon. It was obviously a demon, it had started shifting after catching on fire. The square was silent at first, and then a few individuals started applauding, until the whole marketplace was cheering.

Jalran shared none of their jubilance. He sighed and turned around, walking away. He made his way to a less crowded part of the marketplace, in an alley. Not a back-alley where a mugging was likely to occur, but just another road a little out of the way. He leaned against the wall, breathing heavily. That was it. That was his entire life. All he could hope to aspire to. Killing some petty demon. That was all he could hope for in life. His life would forever be petty, empty, and loveless.

Loveless. The thought struck a haunting chord in him. He usually tried not to think about it, but with how he was feeling now...

He sank to the ground, sitting there, his back propped up against the wall. He felt like he was dead.

But was his life really petty and empty? He was the head of an organization that helped alot of people, and alot of people admired him...

But then, alot more people thought he was a racist windbag. And even if they didn't think he was racist, they still thought him a raving lunatic who lives in a fantasy world that can't come true.

The sun was falling. The people had finished their shopping in the marketplace, for the most part. Jalran got up from his spot and went walking through the streets.

"Hey Jalran, that was an amazing bit of work you did there!" Said the shopkeeper from whom Jalran had grabbed the gun.

"It was nothing." Jalran said, pausing and turning to face him. "Just doing whatever it takes to keep our homes safe."

The demon had tried to kill him, and Jalran didn't doubt that the monster would be trying to kill others to gorge himself.

"That's all I want, after all..." He said, walking off.
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Fri Sep 19, 2008 11:36 am

Another demon watched Jalran from the shadows, keeping a safe distance as he trailed behind him. A smirk played across his face as he watched the mortal easily dispose of a different demon.

Served the fool right, Dunham mused, if he was weak enough to be outmatched by a human, then he didn't deserve his pathetic life.

Some demons had no tact. Dunham was not one of those demons. He had plenty of tact to share. As well as charm, charisma, and ruthless, merciless heart. It was all in how he played his cards. A different face for each situation.

Hidden in the crowd of people in his mortal body, Dunham Hakon trailed Jalran for awhile, watching the human as he went about his business. He'd heard whispers of Jalran before. Well, not so much whispers as shouted indignation. He was making quite a stir in the demon world. It seemed that he was a hard fellow to bargain with, and he didn't appear to be in the market of selling his soul.

Dunham could change that. All he had to do was figure out what it was that he could use to bargain with. Once he found that, Jalran's soul would be as good as his, and Dunham would prove, once again, that he was a demon to be reckoned with. All he needed was some time, a little investigation, and perhaps a couple of mind games.

Dunham smirked and dissolved into the shadows, becoming the eyes and ears of the city around him, and keeping a watchful eye on Jalran.

--------

Bryant shifted his weight, tugging at one of the plates of armor that covered his shoulder. It was hot, heavy, and rather annoying. It hindered his movement almost more than it offered him protection. But he couldn't seem to part with it considering it had saved his life once.

Still, the sun wasn't mercifull, and it wasn't sympathetic to his cause. It did not care that he trudged around day in and out weighted down by this armor in order to keep Bella Luna--particularly Princess Layla--safe. It burned down on him with a carelessness that made him glad that he was, at least, finished with his rounds for the day.

For that he could be grateful, but he was still, at the same time, slightly anxious. There was a great deal of unrest among the royal guard considering the number of citizens that had, of late, gone missing. Particularly those of higher positions, such as the Princess's chambermaids. They had all but vanished without a trace, and Bryant had a fairly decent idea of the only ones that could have made this feat possible.

Narrowing his eyes, Bryant continued to walk on. He'd dwell over the problem for the rest of the afternoon, but it didn't mean that he couldn't still go home for awhile to rest.

However, just as Bryant came within a block of his home, he was alerted by a strange, smoldering smell. Not long after that, he came upon the bloodied, blackened corpse of what had to be a demon.

Bryant glanced around as he heard someone yell, "Hey Jalran, that was an amazing bit of work you did there!"

He knew immediately who had done this deed then, as many people were familiar with Jalran's name. Bryant was one of those people considering he'd often heard the man's rant about going to war with Alasantres. It wasn't that he didn't agree that Alasantres needed to be dealt with, but he had to also admit that they were outnumbered in the super powerful, magic-wielding area.

Still, Bryant had a secret respect for the man, so he quickened his pace to fall into step beside him.

"Nicely done," he congratulated him quietly, keeping his eyes on the road ahead.

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Sat Sep 20, 2008 12:21 pm

Jalran wasn't particularly comfortable. He knew there must be other demons prowling. They liked to come and prey on the people here. Though maybe that was because the corpse still stank. He always had bad feelings when demons were near. Being that he had been enslaved to one, he had a bit of a penchant for recognizing them.

He paused by a weapon vendor. Perhaps he could purchase a new gun. It would be safer to have one on-hand than hope that someone else would have one. His life might depend on it. Perhaps he'd get a shotgun and saw off the end... hide it on his person...

Jalran stopped and turned around at the sound of someone complimenting him, presumably on the matter of the demon he'd slain earlier. Looked like he was with the Royal Guard. Heavy plate armor and all. He seemed a bit young, goatee aside, but Jalran discounted the notion that he was some grunt. That armor made it clear what his position was. He spoke quietly and didn't look directly at him. Looked like he had a destination in mind.

"Thanks." he said, smiling. Hopefully, some conversation might cheer him from his depressed state, if the guard didn't mind small-talk. "Truly an honor to recieve a compliment from someone of your stature." he said, making a slight salute. "But I suppose we perform similar duties. Protect the people, enforce justice and the like-"

"Mr. Jalran?" a little boy said quietly, walking up to him. A little child, probably five or six years old. Middle-class, it seemed. His parents were over at a fruit stand a little ways away.

"Yes?" Jalran asked, looking down at him.

"Thank you." The boy said.

"Just doing what I have to do." Jalran said, smiling and shrugging. "Go on. Get back to your parents. It's getting dark." he said, as the child heeded the advice and went back to his parents.

Jalran was quiet for a bit. "Always nice to hear things like that." he said, turning back to Bryant. "Makes a guy feel like he's making a difference. I considered joining the royal guard, but... never did..." he said, voice trailing off. "Started the Brotherhood instead."
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:09 am

Bryant laughed, lifting his arm and running a hand through his hair, ruffling his thick black hair. He wasn’t used to compliments either. Not that he should have been. The Royal Guard was supposed to be nameless. The princess was the focus of everything. He was merely a pawn used to protect her.

“Thanks, though you’re right. We have similar occupations, so I’m really not that special. Just doing my job too.”

Bryant paused to watch the exchange between Jalran and the boy, smiling slightly. Well, it appeared that Jalran, at least, had fans. That wasn’t something Bryant could brag about. He had none to boast of. He wasn’t certain that he wanted any either. Especially not of the young and moldable type like Jalran’s new fan. He didn’t want that type of pressure.

Bryant nodded vaguely as Jalran began speaking again. Despite the fact that he spoke of how he’d decided against joining the Royal Guard, Bryant knew quite well that he still had quite passionate beliefs. He wondered if he’d been able to make some of those possible with his Brotherhood. He didn’t figure it was his business to ask.

Though he hoped that he hadn’t decided to make good on that threat of war with Alasantres. That was suicide for any mortal. Not that it wasn’t needed.

Bryant frowned. How much longer could they go without being forced into a war? Not much longer if the demons continued to kidnap their people in the dead of night—even broad daylight—and get away with it. Who knew who they’d set their sights on next. Bryant didn’t trust it.

“I see,” Bryant mumbled, his thoughts elsewhere. “What exactly does your Brotherhood do?”

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:24 am

"The Brotherhood of Man is an organization dedicated to the well-being of the human race." Jalran said, explaining. He didn't particularly like this speech, though. It always felt like a sort of advertisement or a recruitment poster.

He walked over to a nearby stair, sitting down on it. "That's our main objective. We protect humans. We have a militia that helps guard the borders against attacks, and some detectives that investigate crimes linked to demons and vampires." he looked up at the moon. "We don't have all that many resources. We rely largely on donations and fundraisers and other means to do what we do." he said. "I've done alot of things with it. We've managed to help escaped prisoners from Alasantres. God knows what it's like to be a prisoner there... I know..." his voice trailed off.

He remembered what it was like. The place was a festering cesspool of death and decay, with the stench of evil everywhere. Nothing grows there. Nothing that's worth growing, at least. And the constant fear of death, demons snapping their hungry jaws at you, threatening to make you their dinner if you do the slightest thing. It was a constant torment. But a slight smile crept onto his face. They'd made him into their worst enemy, he felt.

A cool evening breeze went by. Jalran closed his eyes. It was a pleasant feeling. "They do alot of bad things to you there, you know." he said, his tone less conversational, more somber. "It's horror there. I still have nightmares about it, sometimes. But it just drives me further. Not like I have alot of things to drive for, anyways." he make a sort of bitter chortle. "Some people call me a fanatic. I guess it's true, in a way..."
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 23, 2008 9:51 pm

Bryant nodded, listening intently. Yes, it was something like his current occupation, except that they Royal Guard focused on one individual while it seemed that the Brotherhood encompassed a larger mass. It was a worthy cause, a noteable one. He wondered briefly why it hadn't made bigger waves and drawn more attention.

Bryant frowned. Most likely because everyone was afraid of the villains that Jalran's people stood against. It was hard to find souls brave enough to stand up to demons and vampires and all other sorts of mystical, powerful creatures.

He glanced Jalran's way once as the man trailed off. He'd been a prisoner? No wonder he was so vehement about his cause. Bryant imagined that he would have been too had he been forced to succumb to demon torture for any length of time at all. It was a gruesome idea, and a flash of sympathy welled up inside of Bryant as he thought of the way that Jalran had repeatedly fought for the war against Alasantres.

Could he blame him?

Just the way that Jalran described the events made him wince, and he wasn't even being given the whole story. It also made him thing of the chambermaids that had gone missing, and some of the other noteable civilians in the area. Were they, right now, being tortured like Jalran had been? Or were they already dead? A lump of sickness rose in Bryant's throat.

What could he do for them if they were? The forces of Bella Luna refused to march on Alasantres, and, as far as he knew, there were no individual soldiers being sent on a search and rescue mention. As soon as a human crossed the Bella Luna border, they were as good as dead.

Bryant closed his eyes for a moment.

"At least you're trying," he told him. "That's more than I can say for anyone else I know."

He blew out a breath. What was he thinking to do? He'd have no more influence over the royal court than Jalran.

Suddenly, Bryant's voice dropped to a whisper, "They're at it right now, you know. People have gone missing. What kind of guard am I if I can't save them? As soon as they're smuggled past the Bella Luna border, they fade from existance. The court wont send a rescue mission."

Bryant hadn't realized how badly this had troubled him, but now, as he stood with a man that he knew would understand, he couldn't help but allow his fears to be voiced.

"The demons are finding an easy way in and an easy way out, and no one knows how to stop them."

That grained on Bryant's conscience.

"But what can we do? I have no influence, no power to make a stand." His gaze flicked to Jalran. "But maybe you do. How do you stop them?"

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Thu Sep 25, 2008 8:39 am

Jalran was silent for a moment, sighing. Bryant's words drove in the point that this was seemingly hopeless.

"Demons are very crafty." He said. "Can change their shape. That lends alot of help. There are probably some weres and shifters here in hiding, as well." he said.

"I don't know what to do. If war cannot directly be waged." Jarlan said, disheartened. "We do what we can. If we find a demon here murdering or trying to murder," he looked bitterly in the direction where he'd fought earlier, "We kill it. Unfortunately, by those standards, we only get the stupid ones."

He sighed again. "It would be easier if we had Kamendal on our side. They can sense better."

But they wouldn't get Kamendal on their side. No, all three nations were locked in their stupid border disputes.

"Sometimes..." he said, more softly. "I feel depressed. Like there's no way to end it. I remember, once..." he recalled. "A demon succubus was about to kill me. She said, 'humans will forever be our prey.'" A grim smile came onto his face. "I then pulled out a sawed-off shotgun and blew her head off..." he said with a chuckle.

He looked around. It was getting too dark. "Well, we shouldn't be outside like this. Not this late. This is when the demons like to prowl about." he said. "I've run into a few like this..."
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Sat Sep 27, 2008 2:43 am

As if one was currently lurking in the shadows now, Bryant cast a suspicious look around. He despised the most that the demons were able to change their form, and therefore able to blend into a crowd of unsuspecting, innocent humans. They could be anywhere, and there was nothing to give them away that could be detected by the human senses. Bryant didn’t doubt that Jalran was entirely right to suspect that they were here, even now, cloaked in human costumes.

It infuriated him that there was nothing he could do about this fact either.

“You’re right. They only send the idiots to slaughter. Probably just keeping our attention diverted,” Bryant agreed, thinking of the smoldering demon carcass as well.

Bryant scowled. It was a fool’s game they were playing, but the officials of Bella Luna refused to be budged in the direction of war. Part of Bryant couldn’t blame them, the other part thought them spineless cowards. How many more civilians would have to go missing?

“Kamendal’s powers would be very beneficiary to our cause,” Bryant muttered. “Too bad we’re afraid to leave our boundaries to persuade them.”

Bryant blew out a breath. That was highly unlikely as well, and it wasn’t as if he could persuade the council to act anymore than Jalran had been able to. In their eyes, he was outranked. Even as part of the Royal Guard his opinion mattered little. All they wanted from him was his physical ability to keep Princess Layla safe. They wanted his brawn, not his brains. He could have been a robot for all that they cared.

Bryant’s sour mood was alleviated a little at Jalran’s story, and a faint smile crossed his face. “One less of them, I guess.”

But there were still so very many. Hundreds, thousands. Maybe even millions. He didn’t know. He’d never been into the boundaries of Alasantres. That was suicidal, and Bryant valued his life a trifle more than that.

He nodded thoughtfully. “I suppose it is time to turn in.” How had night approached so quickly? Where had the day gone? “I’m only a short walk from here.”

Bryant was struck with a fleeting urge to remain outside as he gestured in the direction of his home. Some reckless sliver of his soul had the brief desire to remain outside and will the demons to come looking for him. At least then he could act. Part of him wanted to fight a demon. If for no other reason than that he’d actually be doing something to help if he murdered the beast.

Part of him was also fascinated with the idea, spurred on by the thought of truly acting in a beneficial manner rather than walking around as a symbol in his armor. Was he not just for show in the council’s eyes?
Bryant was reluctant to move any closer to his home, to enter the structure and fade into the oblivion of his repetitious job and life. Meeting with Jalran had ignited the old spark that had spurred him into his current career to begin with: the prospect of action against Alasantres.

“Do you think the prospect of sneaking into Alasantres and rescuing prisoners is a completely idiotic idea?” Bryant asked abruptly, because, in truth, the idea that all those innocents had been captured and smuggled into hostile territory without hope of salvation grained against his being. “Do you think it’s possible to sneak in and take them back?”

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:52 am

Jalran chortled grimly. "You're much too hard on yourself."

His eyes shot up when Bryant asked the last question. This was something very close to what he'd been wanting - someone from the castle, close to a position of authority to actually listen to him and his proposals.

"Well, it'd very risky." Jarlan said, nodding. "But not completely foolhardy. The demons mainly live alone, scattered accross the landscape, so their numbers, if large, are at least sparse. If the rescuers were to act quickly, we wouldn't have to deal with a large army at once. But we'd need a skilled team of people to get in quickly, and the supplies and resources necessary to get the prisoners out alive. Sending rescue groups to small settlements could very well prove fruitful. Kill all the demons in the settlement and take the prisoners, it's not like King Tor would find out. But..." his voice softened. "Very risky, still."

He looked up at the full moon, glowing down at them. "Well, thanks for the conversation." he said, walking away. "Take care."

He'd best get back to his home, he decided. Not safe to be wandering at night. Though he did like the cool night air. It gave a serene feeling.
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 30, 2008 6:29 am

Bryant stared after Jalran’s retreating form as the man took his leave, turning over in his mind what he’d told him. It was possible then, to save all of those innocents that had been stolen away right out from underneath them.

Risky, but possible.

All he needed was some people to stand with him. Could he find that many willing souls? It usually only took the mentioning of Alasantres to have most running in fear. Jalran would help him. And his brotherhood? How many men were in that little society of his?

Bryant pursed his lips and turned away. It was something to consider, he decided as he started off in the direction of his own home.
-----
He waited until the two men parted before he moved. Previous to that, he’d been following them, listening to every word they spoke. Eavesdropping wasn’t hard for him. His senses were magnified more than twice as much as any human’s.

And he also knew that he wasn’t the only one listening. His eyes cut through the falling darkness, keen enough to detect even the faintest of shadows. He could smell the presence of others as well. More than just humans, and others that weren’t like him. His habitual anger boiled discontentedly as he stepped out of his cover of a hiding place.

At the moment, he didn’t have time to deal with the other presences as he would have liked to. He had larger matters at hand. More important things that would help him in his other quest.

Cove Jones waited until the knight from the Royal Guard turned and headed in the other direction before he approached the other man, the one that had slain a demon not long before. He’d gathered from their conversation that they both had similar goals as he did, but his best bet was with this Jalran man. The other was connected with the government that Cove despised. This other one had no ties.

Cove’s eyes flicked once skyward before he fell into step beside Jalran. Night was coming. He didn’t have much time.

“You and I have similar interests,” he spoke quietly, his voice hardly detectable, and got straight to the point. “I think we can help one another.”

Cove kept his head down, but his eyes were alert to every individual movement. His hands were crammed into his pocket. The collar of his shirt was lifted to cover the sides of his face.

“If I could show you how to get into the castle, would you stand against Tor Vorigan?”

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 30, 2008 10:10 am

Jalran stopped and whirled around, facing this new stranger. Who was this? He hid his face...

Shared similar goals in mind, eh...? Wait... was he asking if he could...

"Me? Assassinate Tor?" Jalran asked warily. "That'll take alot more than luck, or what I have..."

He paused. Something was odd about this man... he sniffed... he could smell a slight doggish smell... a werewolf. Well, better that than a demon. To the best of his knowledge, Kamendal didn't have a vendetta against him.

"Who are you?" he asked at length.
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 30, 2008 10:36 am

Cove shifted his weight impatiently, continuing to keep his eyes diverted away from Jalran’s face. The closer it came to night falling, the more anxious he was going to become. He didn’t imagine he could continue looking at least mildly inconspicuous when he was in the form of his wolf. He scowled. He’d thought this man--from what he’d spied--had been geared toward an uprising against Alasantres. Was he going to flake out when Cove could offer him the perfect opportunity?

“Are you afraid of the big, bad vampire?” he muttered, but still wouldn’t look his way.

His gaze switched in intervals, looking from the ground toward the sky and then back down again. When he spotted the moon, he was going to be in trouble. It was hard to be rational and calm when you were a wolf. Was this man afraid of Tor? The man that all the demons spoke of and hated? Cove had thought he’d finally found someone that would be itching to help him. Had he been wrong?

He couldn’t let this opportunity pass.

Cove stood abruptly still when Jalran asked him of his identity. His name was not something he gave out easily, nor something he really gave out at all. In fact, most of his current acquaintances had to create a nickname for him as he’d never divulged his identity to them either. Still, maybe now was the time to let go of some of his secrets if he could win allies in exchange.

“I’m a friend of your cause,” Cove admitted at length.

Finally, Cove turned to face Jalran. His eyes were dark and guarded, and only remained on Jalran’s for a moment before flicking toward the sky again.

“Cove,” he released his name reluctantly. “My name is Cove, but I hardly use it anymore. The man with that name isn’t me any longer. That man was from Bella Luna. I’m from Kamendal.”

Cove turned away again, guarding his eyes from the man at his side. “You might have guessed, but I don’t have much time before I phase now. I can give you time to consider my offer, but I won’t give much. More people die the longer we wait.”

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 30, 2008 10:44 am

"I'm not scared!" Jalran snapped. "I'm just sensible. Even if you can get me into the castle, I don't have any special powers. I'm just one person who can shoot a gun, and I don't know how if that'll be enough against the king of the vampires." he said, though he perked up a bit when he heard the name.

"Cove?" He asked, leaning against the wall. "I've heard of you..." he said, rubbing his chin. "The demons hate you about as much as they hate me." He looked around. "Well, if you're from Kamendal, we'd best not be out in the open. Move to a more private place to discuss it. I'm all for what you're proposing. There's just the matter of tact..." he said. "But don't insult me." he said, his voice becoming more stern.
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Tue Sep 30, 2008 11:01 am

Cove smiled as the human beside him became riled and indignant. Good. That was the fight he’d been waiting for, the fire he’d expected to find in the infamous Jalran. He understood the man’s worries. He’d once had similar ones himself. But he’d taken care of those, and they were about to see the result of how he’d taken care of mortality in a few more moments once the darkness of the night was complete.

“You’re absolutely right,” he agreed, “but there has to be a way around that, something we can find so that you could combat him.”

Cove nodded as Jalran paused and conceded to knowing his name. He was slightly appeased to find that he’d made a big enough impression among the demons that his name was well-known. He found that the hate they harbored against him was almost as good of a reward to him as killing them was.

Without a word, Cove tilted his head to the side and ducked into a storage hut, one that he could already sense was unoccupied with everything but a few crates of food. Pushing the door aside, Cove slipped in and waited for Jalran to follow before he closed the door behind him.

He could feel the subtle shift in his body beginning to awaken as the final slivers of daytime faded into night. He ignored it, however, and kept on task.

“Deal. No more insults.” His eyes were well-adjusted to the darkness of the hut, and he found a wall with nothing against it that he could lean back against. “Just help me kill that monster. Or at least put a dent in his plans. Do you have people that would help?”

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Sat Oct 04, 2008 7:03 am

Jalran sat on a set next to the wall, sitting down, eyeing his apparent new ally.

"Well, there are a number of people in the Brotherhood who would jump at the chance to assassinate King Tor. Alot of them have lost family members. I bet some of them wouldn't care if they never came out alive." he smiled grimly. You can't buy motivation like that. "But the question is, how do you kill them? Sometimes a simple fall is enough, or some gunshots. But with the more powerful, things get harder... I recall one incident with a particularly troublesome vampire..." he looked up. "It took a satchel charge to finish him."

Explosives often did that trick, yes. Some good explosives might do just that to Tor, if they could get them there. "But, even if we get to the castle and kill Tor, how can we get out? It's not like something on the level of explosives can just be a sneak-in attack."
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:49 am

Cove nodded as Jalran spoke. That was exactly what he wanted to hear. Those were the kinds of people he needed. He wanted the people that had a vendetta against the creatures of Alasantres like he did. He wanted to have allies that he knew would be as passionate about their mission as he was, and no one could reach his level of obsession unless they had suffered the loss of loved ones to the hands of those demons like he had.

Still, like Jalran went on to say, no matter the level of desire one contained to destroy the whole hellish race, it was a nearly impossible feat for humans. He himself had ran into that obstacle as well, but he had, obviously, found a course in which he could remedy that weakness. He didn’t and couldn’t expect all the other mortals Jalran would round up to be as willing to sacrifice their humanity in exchange for something like what he became at night.

It wasn’t that he minded being a werewolf, because he didn’t. Not at all. Not even now as that physical stirring began to churn through his body, awakening sensations that would mutate his body rapidly as Bella Luna succumbed to darkness. The process had become relatively painless, but it was still disconcerting, and some of a person’s humanity was bound to drain away when they had to share their body with a beast. Cove had adapted and conceded to these things out of necessity. His obsession with vengeance had found no other way.

But how could the humans defend themselves against the immortals of Alasantres? Obviously, there was the option of weapons, much like Jalran had demonstrated earlier with the demon he had slain. However, that had only been one demon, and a weak and foolish one at that. Once inside of Alasantres, they would meet with much more formidable forces, and it would not be that easy.

“A satchel?” Cove murmured, a strange gruff tone in his voice as he began to shift. “I like that idea.”

But it did, of course, diminish the possibility of a quick entrance and a similarly hasty escape. It would be hard enough as it was to go undetected, but the added chaos of explosives would give them away in no time.

But then, Cove hadn’t exactly worried about getting anyone out alive, because he had been indifferent to his own fate, so long as it involved killing Tor before he died.

Cove shuddered convulsively, and his eyes darkened.

“Excuse me.”

He quickly sought the refuge of the back of the storage hut, cramming himself behind a few crates so that Jalran would not have to witness his transformation. With an inhuman grunt, Cove’s body shifted and gave way to fur and claws and large, sharp white teeth. The transformation took really no time at all. The longer he’d been a werewolf, the easier and faster it had become. However, he still didn’t like being watched. To him, the shifting was too personal. It was his own burden to bear.

Once it was over, Cove remained where he was, tucked into the shadows. For the moment, he didn’t want to face Jalran with his new face. It was always an awkward thing for humans to comprehend.

“I can see if I can find others to help,” Cove offered, his voice deeper and more gruff. “We’ll take explosives and whatever else will give us the advantage.” He paused, and then succumbed to adding, “I honestly hadn’t really planned on making it out alive, but I’ll do what I can to keep your people alive.”

Cove glanced down at his hands, hands that were now boasting two sets of sharp, deadly claws. He knew the extent he was willing to go to in order to accomplish his goal, but he didn’t know how far Jalran was willing to stand behind his own desires.

“There’s always the possibility of bribing a demon for help.”

He offered this bit of information quietly and reluctantly, because it was his last resort. Allying the enemy in any sort of way was his last, desperate measure. He wanted nothing to do with the filth.

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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Thu Oct 30, 2008 7:46 am

Jalran stirred a little uncomfortably at the sight of the werewolf, though he wasn't really scared. He knew that this man was a werewolf. There was simply that nagging paranoia that was always in his head...

He was always scared of assassins. Anyone, anywhere could be trying to off him. Could this 'Cove' really just be another such... no. It was unlikely. Even so, they'd never get anywhere with that kind of distrust.

"Make no mistake, Cove." Jalran said. "As right as the cause is, I am not willing to send my people on a suicide mission. If we do that, there won't be people left to continue..."

His head shot up at the hesitant suggestion that they bribe a demon.

"No!" he said, standing up rapidly. "I will never trust a demon with that." though he calmed down and sat down. Cove himself wasn't eager to suggest, anyway. No sense getting mad at him.

"No..." he said. "There's no way to trust them. The demon would betray us in a heartbeat. I'm certain of that. Even so... I couldn't bear the shame..."

He walked to the window, looking out. He then shut the window. Paranoia set in. He felt as though they were being watched... someone could be looking. Unseen, unheard, undetectable, hearing their thoughts before they even spoke.

"How to do it..." He muttered. "There must be a way... there has to be... things have to be right..." his voice was a whisper by this point.
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PostSubject: Re: No One Mourns the Wicked   Thu Nov 06, 2008 11:36 pm

Cove was silent for several moments as he listened to Jalran move to a window and slide it closed. His mouth quirked at the action. Was his friend a little paranoid? Could he blame him? Once upon a time, Cove had been the same type of man, constantly casting a glance over his shoulder, half-expecting someone to be behind him, prepared to strike. That paranoia had long since subsided. It was nearly impossible to sneak up on a werewolf.

Despite their similarities, it was obvious to Cove that Jalran didn’t have the same desire for revenge as he did. Cove was willing to sacrifice everything, and Jalran preferred to hold some things back. How could he work around that? There had to be a happy medium in which they could fight the vampires and Jalran could bring his people back alive. But was there? Was there really any way to come out of Alasantres still mortal?

Jalran had shot down the only idea he’d had in regards of making as safe an entry as an exit. Of course demons couldn’t be trusted, of course he’d rather tear his own eyes out than work with one, trust one, but he was growing more and more desperate as time went on. His heart and soul craved action, and he didn’t know how much longer he could be idle.

“So, make a deal with me then.”

Cove jolted, startled, and stumbled back into a stack of crates. His head snapped around, searching out the source of the voice in the darkness, just as the stench of death and decay curled into his nostrils. Automatically, Cove’s lips peeled back to bare two rows of sharp, white teeth while a deep growl resonated inside his chest.

He crouched low, prepared to spring. “Show yourself, demon.”

Dunham Hakon stepped forward from the shadows several feet away from Cove, a cunning, sly grin on his face. He regarded the werewolf calmly, his hands clasped idly behind his back, and he raised a brow when the wolf growled again. Really, did the mutt think he was frightening? Dunham was unimpressed.

“I don’t have all day,” Dunham reminded him. “Are you going to ask me, or not?”

Cove’s fur stood on end in his agitated state. The demon scum must have been eavesdropping on them the entire time. How long had they been unknowingly followed? Cove was just as annoyed with himself for not expecting such a thing.

“Ask you what?” Cove snapped.

Dunham’s grin widened, and his eyes glittered darkly. “How to get into Tor Vorigan’s castle, of course.”

Cove snarled. “You weren’t invited into this conversation.”

Dunham tsked loudly and shook his head. “You’re wasting my time, Cove. I know what your heart wants, and you know you can get it from me. The answer to your question. How to get into the castle. Are you going to let the mortal deter you?”

Cove turned his head so that the demon couldn’t see his eyes. He was always uneasy to stare at someone eye-to-eye. They could always see far too much in his expression. It’d be smart if he took Jalran and ran now, but a little, silent part of him wondered if the demon was right. He’d known all along that there was only one guaranteed way into the castle. Could he take it? What about Jalran?

Dunham groaned aloud.

“You’re letting him sway you,” he complained, reading Cove’s thoughts.

Obviously annoyed with the wolf, Dunham turned in the direction where he knew that Jalran still stood. “What do you say, mortal? Do you want my help? If I remember correctly, you had your own vendetta as well.”

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