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 Redemption

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Caelmot
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PostSubject: Redemption   Mon Aug 25, 2008 7:58 pm

The morning dew froze Caehdin's feet to numbness as he clutched his wooden cane. He tried to think of happy times as he watched the blurry dot that was a foreign horseman grow. Perhaps recalling when he'd found the hunter in the woods from Axlhal and saved his life, and then the man chose to remain in Hazgrad and had single-handedly helped increase the city's meat supply by training some of its younger hunters and trappers. Or perhaps he would remember the folks who'd landed on their shores and had stayed in Hazgrad for some time, always complimenting Caehdin at how finely the tools were crafted. But instead all that ran through his mind was sorrow.

He knew that today was the day that this horseman would arrive, and he knew what the horseman would ask. In the name of Mhelrisse, he'd state that Caehdin must surrender Hazgrad into the mighty Ghaulish Empire, and Caehdin knew that if he denied to do so, the horseman would return to Mhelrisse, give this news to his king, and then Caehdin's beloved son would be killed. A tear came to his eye, blurring his old vision even more. He coughed, his lungs stinging with the acute pain that the crisp morning air brought. Winter had not ended so long ago that it's icy presence was completely driven from the land.

When the horseman was close enough that Caehdin could tell the length of his bow, the man slowed his horse to rest. He was alone, as was Caehdin, but far off, a large blur, more horsemen, backed this lone-rider, and Caehdin knew that behind him, eyes watched.

The messenger pulled out a rolled length of leather. From it, he read.

"As demanded by the king of the mighty and ever-increasing Ghaulish Empire, Mhelrisse the Dark-Wolf, high ruler of these lands, your province and its inhabitants are hereby under his rule. If you choose to deny your new king, then it is his order to swiftly execute the life of Keegan Caehdin, after which event shall follow the take-over of Hazgrad through the use of unyielding force. If you comply with your lord's orders, then a troupe of his guard shall immeadiatly inhabit Hazgrad, seizing all civilan and military arms, and hold Hazgrad in this way until Mhelrisse the Dark Wolf himself graces it and establishes it. Do you comply."

Caehdin never flinched at the harsh words. He'd known what he would risk and what he would lose. He loved his son, but they both had a love and duty to Hazgrad high above any mortal love or duty either could ever possess, even to each-other. Suddenly, the frail looking man spoke out in a powerful voice.

"Keegan may pass on into peace, I may pass on into peace, and more loyal to Hazgrad may pass on into peace, but before any of us have peace, there will be war, for without this unavoidable war, Hazgrad's people would not be free. And freedom is above both war and peace. Freedom is something worth dying for. I refuse to comply with your warlord's wishes, and will deny him perpetually, even as your army scraps to take this place."

"Then you shall feel the heavy strike of his military! You call him a warlord, now you shall see why! Huter!"

With the command to his horse, the man turned about and rode back down the path. Another tear formed in Caehdin's eye. He took a shaky breath and whispered into the wind.

"I love you son. Be at peace and wait for me there, for I will not be long. I have started this, but I cannot finish it. We will watch over our home in hopes that it remains free. Gevegrad to Hazgrad, gevegrad."

And so, the messenger and his blur went back from where it came. Caehdin's own scouts had reported that Mhelrisse's men were not far away. Caehdin would have to act fast now, to get his forces into a position from where they could have some slim advantage. He already knew the place. With Hazgrad's setting, deep in a large wood, with only one way in for Mhelrisse's army from where he was, there was a location where he might be able to hold him. Hold him and wait. Hold him and hope. Hold him and fight.

Now begins Hazgrad's struggle as the old king turns back to his small domain, filled with no more than a few hundred citizens, well-established, but not made for war, not fortified enough to withstand an empire's seige. A city built upon prosperity through production, not upon a mighty garrison. But their tools would soon have to become weapons if they truly thirsted for freedom, for war was now upon them as the old king entered the city and looked sadly upon it.



Like the morning, Hazgrad's future was cloudy...


-----*-----


Caelmot yawned and slowly got himself from his bunk onto his feet. He was freezing away from the warmth of his furs and wool that were his bedding. He knew it would warm up though as the sun stayed out. He walked into his father's forge and stoked the fire for the day. It grew hotter and hotter until he knew it was hot enough for the time being. Suddenly, a hand grasped his shoulder. His father smiled down on him. Caelmot took a breath and concentrated. He wanted to go try to hunt again today, and he wasn't sure how his father would receive the request. However, he simply had to ask.

"Father, may I join the hunters again today?"

Gabhiu scratched his bearded chin.

"No. However, I do need for you to go out and buy some things for me. I have a list drawn up and a pouch of coins on the table. Go on now, waisted time cannot be gotten back again."

Caelmot went and got the things and left the forge, heading for the bakery. It was already warmer, and Caelmot couldn't help but smile at the chance to get out of the forge.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Thu Aug 28, 2008 7:18 am

[~OOC~]
I am not sure what we are supposed to do here, but I'll play along. Wink
[/~OOC~]




Victorius walked around the small barbarian town, its undeveloped streets, seemed so dark in the morning, but its population was filled with life, it’s people started doing their everyday activities. He had a job last night, to kill some man, who supposedly brought shame to the Pub Keepers Family. He completed his job without a problem and as cold bloodedly as usual. He knew the pay will not be great, but he needed all the resources he can get right now. Every assassins main weapons is information, mostly obtained trough Gossip and rumors and from what he gathered dark times where coming to this land, dark, but profitable if you play your cards right.
He got carries away as he was passing by some shops and bumped into a young lad he recognized as the son of Gabhiu the Smith. A man who he helped him in the creation of his “tools”.
Watch where you go boy, or I will pay a visit to your father.
-He said, his face hard to figure out from beneath the silver hood, but his arms where very close to the place where he had one of his daggers…
Well what do you have to say for yourself boy?
-yelled the exiled Greek, and the innocent lad, who had done nothing wrong. It was clear something was bothering him, and the boy was just a puppet for him to throw his anger on…
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Telonicus Septimius
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Thu Aug 28, 2008 9:20 am

Septimius awoke with a jolt. He rolled off his bunk and quickly changed from his night clothes to his day ones, which were a leather tunic and a pair of pants. His parents were not in the house when he stepped out of his sleeping room. It did not bother him much, as his father was a hunter and his mother was normally selling foodstuffs and such in the marketplace. Septimius remembered yesterday that his father had given him a few coins in a furry leather pouch, and that he had left it on the clay table. They were for bread, he had said. Go pick some up tomorrow if you're hungry. I must hunt that day, and your mother is busy in the marketplace. Quickly he backtracked over to the table, picked the pouch up gingerly, and ran over to the bakery. As he breathed in the air, he felt something special in that day. Something...
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Caelmot
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Thu Aug 28, 2008 5:27 pm

"So sorry sir, please forgive me, I must be on my way."

Caelmot backed cautiously away from the hooded man. He could not tell if he'd ever seen him before, but he did not sound or seem familiar. As he turned, he almost bumped into another person. He backed up, feeling stupid and clumsy at first, then simply embarrassed. Their king stood before him. He bowed his head.

"King Caehdin! Forgive me sir, I am so sorry. Please forgive me sir, I was rushing and I-"

The man raised his hand for silence, not looking at the boy, but beyond him. Caelmot noticed one of the garrison's soldiers behind him, with a horn to his mouth. Caelmot winced at the loud resonate sound that emanated from the cornual instrument. From the garrison itself and from the town's centre, two other horns responded. The king proceeded to the small nearby stage that was located next to the town's centre. He waited for the town to assemble itself before him, for his announcement had to reach all ears.




{OOC: All those participating, please assemble for the announcement.}
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Fri Aug 29, 2008 4:11 am

Victorius quickly ran towards the Pub which was not a long distance away, the owner was already waiting with the small sack of gold. He took it and nodded, then climbed up a tree near it, and soon after climbing he found himself on a roof top of a building, down bellow was the crowd was prepering to hear an anouncment. He disliked being in a crowd, instead he was on the roof, where he could hear it all, and have control over the situation if a conflict broke out...
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Fri Aug 29, 2008 7:18 am

Alice went with the crowd, not quite sure what was happenieng, having only arrived in town today.

She was pushed and pulled but she made herslef there, just as some knightly looking figure starrted to speak
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Fri Aug 29, 2008 7:36 am

Septimius was already half-way to the bakery, but as he heard the loud quailing of the horns, he swiveled around and ran towards the stage. In his years of experience with the town, he had learned that horns blowing meant the king was to speak. He, of course, always respected what the old one said, and without waiting for his parents to catch up to him, managed to place himself near the front of the crowd. The jostling of the crowd in back as each attempted to get to the front quickly transmitted itself to the front, and he was suddenly pushed down by a dour-faced woman making an improbably unlikely attempt at simply bulldozing her way through the crowd, with the result that she and a few others had been pushed, himself one of them. Only the fact that his odd pose resulted in a rather impressive sense of balance prevented him from falling down on the dirt and perhaps being trampled unceremoniously upon. Dusting himself off, he glanced at the other eight or nine being trampled unmercifully over. Sighing, he grasped one's arm tightly and lifted the one up, then did the same with all of them...
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Caelmot
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Fri Aug 29, 2008 2:23 pm

Caehdin watched the hubbub of the crowd. His heart was still heavy, and he could feel his will to live only go so far as Hazgrad. Hazgrad's existence was all that drove him. He could feel his life's strength dissipate with every passing moment. He sighed at the thought and at the unsettled crowd that formed before him, then raised his hand to speak.

"Please, assemble and be at ease. This stage was made so the speaker's voice could reach all ears, alas, settle yourselves and be attentive. As you all have likely heard, last week the heir to my position, my only son, went missing. What only a handful of you knew is that he was abducted by a warlord to the south and west of us, known as Mhelrisse. Mhelrisse's men currently hold him in custody within their lands. This is a small matter compared to what Mhelrisse's intentions are."

Caehdin took a moment to compose his next words carefully.

"Mhelrisse has taken over many lands already, for those of you who have until now been oblivious. He has recently taken Axlhal, our neighbors to the south, and Pepridge, just west. Now, he aims for us. I've heard tell that he commands an army in the thousands. Our scouts report that this gossip may now be dwarfed by its new size."

He was stopped for a moment by the murmur that ran through the crowd. He lifted his hand for silence, then spoke again.

"As you might suppose, he plans to take Hazgrad next. This morning, I went out to the western path into Hazgrad, and there came a messenger from Mhelrisse's army. The Ghaulman said that I must surrender Hazgrad to this tyrannical Mhelrisse or have my son killed and war declared upon us. I chose war."

Once more, he paused, but then his voice rose above the murmur and now the few shouts that came his way.

"I chose war! I did not choose it because I wished for Hazgrad to go down with my son, but because with what few choices I had, it left hope. Yes, their army is many times the size of our garrison, of our population even, but if I had surrendered, we would have had nothing. With the tales I've heard of the Ghaulish king, of his grand army, I've also heard that his taxes are heavy, so heavy that those beneath him are as slaves. Their right to choose their profession bereft, their stocks depleted to his tariffs, and his guard does as it pleases to the women, in wedlock or not. Knowing this, I say I will not stand to let our food be fowled by his belly, not let our women be defaced by his army, nor let our children starve as our stock is claimed by Mhelrisse the Dark Wolf. Instead, I sacrificed my sons life, I will sacrifice my own life as well, to keep Hazgrad free. Now, as I said, our garrison is no match to their numbers. So, I ask you fine citizens, in the time of your state's need, caste off the safety of your professions and take up arms against this oppressor. It is not fair for a man who not a soul here has ever seen to claim right to what you've worked so hard to maintain as yours and Hazgrad's! I will not stand for Mhelrisse's ignorant greed, and neither should you! Who will risk their lives and take up arms against this dark evil in the name of a chance for our children's future and in the name of your natural born right to freedom? Who shall, raise your hands with pride!"

Caehdin rose his hand and waited for hands in the crowd to sprout up as well.

Caelmot's heart beat madly. His king always had a way of empowering his essence in a way few others could. He'd never heard of this Mhelrisse, nor seen nor met him, but he thrust his hand in the air against what he stood for. Evil, darkness, greed, oppression, tyranny, ignorance...that these acts were aimed at Hazgrad, at him, his father, everyone he'd ever met who lived within the city's walls, that is what made his hand shoot up into the air, and he almost felt himself smile at how strong it made him feel to oppose such evils.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Fri Aug 29, 2008 3:09 pm

Victorius, jumped off the small roof and landed not so far from the crowd.
Well, this land is dealt with, these farmers will not have the power to stand up against the powerful army..
He turned away facing the gate, but something made him change his mind, something reminded him of his own lands, and the great shadow that fell on them. He turned once again to the place where the King stood, if anything the newly made army will need a professional like himself. The noble Greeks had the saying ” Impossible Is Nothing”.
He walked towards the crowd, keeping his hand in the air, he was going to help these people, and even if it costs him his life, besides he knew he will get his revenge in this life or the next.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Mon Sep 01, 2008 11:28 am

Running from his shabby home near the central of the city, Tork rushed to the center square. His parents, growing very weak with age, could not go to the king's speech themselves and so they had sent Torcassio by himself to relay the news to them. He had gotten ready fairly slowly - getting dressed and equipping his shabby and tarnished sword - but then had realized he was getting late and that the announcements were probably already started.

He was lucky, for the speech had only just begun when he arrived. He heard the king's message and was astounded at what he heard. "War?" he said quietly, for he had not known much of the town's affairs until recently. His extent of knowledge was that the town was going through some hard times, but never of any news of war.

He noticed a boy his age standing beside him with a perplexing gaze in his eyes. "Hey you. I haven't seen you before, what's your name? I'm Tork," he said, sticking out his hand to shake.




[OOC]That was directed towards your character Caelmot. I say it here because I had posted last in the OOC thread. XD[/OOC]




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Last edited by DaNiX_ on Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:28 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Mon Sep 01, 2008 1:53 pm

Caelmot turned to the young man next to him and extended the hand that was not raised in the air.

Caelmot Gabhiu's my name. You going to join?

Caelmot moved his head slightly upward, signaling to his raised hand and joining to fight against Mhelrisse's army.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:59 pm

The two new friends shook hands. In his head, Tork wasn't sure he wanted to join, for he feared death. However, he never liked to show weakness so he smiled as he raised his hand and said, "Sure, I guess I'll join. I'd kill loads of enemies for the sake of all us good people!"

He continued to smile even when he looked around the town at all of the other people. His smile slowly faded as he felt the anxiousness rise all around him. A lot of people he looked up to looked uncertain and some even left the town center. This was definitely not a time to be happy. Tork looked back at Caelmot and in a more serious tone, he said, "Times are getting rough, huh."
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Caelmot
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Tue Sep 02, 2008 10:11 am

Caelmot looked at the many different emotions as well.

Yes, they are. I mean, our king now has no heir, and he is getting a bit old, wise and lovable, but not fit to fight, for certain. Our barracks, well, from what I see of the night-watch, they don't appear to enthused about their positions in this society. But, if we all united, buckled down and worked hard...

Caelmot played Caehdin's words over again in his mind. Yes, their army is many times the size of our garrison, our population even...

...surely, we have the gods on our side.

Caelmot spotted his father in the crowd. His heart began to flutter, wondering what his father might do if he saw his only son left in Hazgrad with his hand raised up. He spotted Caelmot, and his pulse stopped for a moment. He looked relieved, then confused, then angry, then remorseful, and finally, his hand went up to. His eyes were wet, and Caelmot felt ashamed, as though he'd only done so because his son had.

"If you will join me, then this day, find yourselves weapons and things for battle. Tomorrow morning, I will open the garrison, and the first who come there will receive what weapons we have left. Gabhiu, you are ensured a weapon from the barracks if today, you make weapons in your forge, and through the night."

Gabhiu's voice raised.

"And what if my son helps me?"

"Your son? Yes, he shall get one too."

Caelmot looked over at his father. He would be working all night then.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Tue Sep 02, 2008 11:28 am

Victorius rose his voice addressing the man who was still lord of this land…still
I will aid you in combat great lord, with my experience of battle you are sure to have some chance, but has thy not thought about moving, moving away to the lands on the east, to the borders of Macedon and then deep inside Greece, a place great for farming, fishing and hunting.
He saw that his words caused some response from the crowd, some agreed with his words, mostly those too old or afraid, however some seemed to not like the way he talked to the king, and then his idea…But only a foolish man would insult a person who’s job is killing…
Victorius looked at the king show stood far away, but no doubt he had heard him…
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Caelmot
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Tue Sep 02, 2008 12:53 pm

Caehdin squinted.

"Interesting proposal. Fleeing, leaving all we've worked to attain in return for more work, and safety. All quiet down now, please. I have had my scribe take count of those who would fight, now, all lower your hands, lower them."

Caehdin waited for those who'd raised their hands to comply.

"Now, those of you who wish to leave these lands and travel south, to lands this man knows of but not myself, only heard tales of its people and their customs, raise your hands."
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Wed Sep 03, 2008 12:12 pm

Brannad pushes his way through the crowd and plants his battle axe in the ground before the man of unknown origin. He glances upon his face, a malevolent sneer worn upon his young features. Then his expression changed to that of a respectful solemnnity as he faces the King.

"Honourable leader I greet you. I am Brannad of the fallen Bó tribe. Would you send any of your people to this land of which this.... southerner speaks of? For all any of us knows it is a place of demons and monsters. My mighty father once spoke of an ancient alliance of the tribes. I as his heir to a broken tribe beg you to unite the free among us once more. Bring the renegades to your banner, send messengers to the west and east. You are respected across the land, you will bring great battle to the usurper and crush his foul kingdom."

At the final words, he knelt down, holding the axe in both hands. His head facing the ground as he awaited an answer to his propostion. If anyone had seen his eyes at this point, they would have seen tears welling.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Wed Sep 03, 2008 4:57 pm

A hush came over the crowd, as well as within Caehdin's mind. He knew little of the ancient alliance other than that it was used only once, the eve upon its creation, against nomadic raiders from the east. But that was a long, long time ago.

"Brannad, heir to nothing other than remorse, stand, for we shall grovel no more. We shall fear no more, we shall be safe no more, for freedom comes at the highest cost. It's cost is bravery, courage, valor. It's cost is to stand and fight when your numbers are less, and to keep hope when you think there is none. Bó has fallen. I have not heard from Bó in some time. I last remember it being good trade, and before that, we fought alongside your tribe and what was left of the others to fend off those to the east. Now, from the west comes our troubles, and from the east shall solution greet them. We can reunite the tribes around us, but I feel they will be shaky, they will still have fear, they will not remember the cost of freedom. From what my messengers have told me, most see this Mhelrisse the Dark Wolf coming, and are ready to do little more than embrace him and his darkness. They see no hope. However, I know of a way that will remind them of what it is to be free! We will have to face the enemy, alone, as Hazgrad, once, and not be defeated. Once, one day of battle, one small victory, and surely, they will remember that hope always exists. Brannad, you look weary, as weary as I am old and crumbling. Come with me, we've much to speak of. However, first, I shall remind all of you of that freedom. Take it upon yourself, as your fellow citizen's watch, to join us in war. I will be sacrificing much more than the life of my own heir, I expect you all to sacrifice with me. Prepare for war or run to safe life, and never truly live again."

Caehdin waved his arm, motioning for Brannad to come with him.

Caelmot spoke to Tork over the mumbling voices that now rose after Caehdin's speech.

So it's sure then. War is on our doorstep, and though we greet it, we greet it to keep out the ominous cloud that stands behind it. Tomorrow morning, early on, just before the sun rises, come to my father's forge. I will have proper weapons for us. But tell nobody!

Caelmot spoke his last few words as he shuffled off toward his father who beckoned him toward the forge.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Wed Sep 03, 2008 7:24 pm

Septimius was caught off-guard with the speech, but managed to pledge his allegiance, albeit rather oddly.

"I, Septimius, hold my arm to you, king, and pledge my loyalty to you, in life, and in death, I shall serve thee!"

He was rather disconcerted by the rather un-lengthy so-called 'speech' that he had given, but was assured that he had been heard. He had heard the forge-worker too, and was now running towards the forge itself. He had always wondered what battle tasted like, to feel the victorious feeling that came only when fighting for the noblest of causes... but he musn't dawdle. As he daydreamed, there were certainly people coming... and soon there'd be none left for him. He nearly crashed through the crowd congregating again, this time before the forge, but caught his balance and managed to get to the front.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:47 am

"I too pledge my mortal body to you oh king. My axe will cleave the skulls of the enemy, my arrows pierce and my knives carve apart their tyranny. I serve also."

Brannad pulled himself to his feet and blinked a few times before raising his eyes to gaze upon the old king. Then he walked nearer to him and prepared to follow.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:31 pm

My native land is long-since vanquished and my honour lost, but if you would accept the offering of my service, my lord, then I may regain my honour and once more have a place to call home.

With that, Kheldrim walked forward and joined the growing crowd.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Tue Sep 09, 2008 10:10 pm

Caehdin smiled at Kheldrim, then beckoned him forward.

"I know you. You too, come with me."

With the two soldiers in tow, Caehdin headed for the city's center hall. He would hold a council with who he felt were well-off enough, be it in mind, body, spirit, or the like, to be his successor. He would need to assign his heir soon, for he grew weaker by the day, and he doubted his strength enough to last past the first day of battle. He and those he wished to come with him arrived at the hall and entered its silent interior, soon to be pierced by grave words and sorrowful men.

Caelmot worked with vigor already, stoking the fire more still and fetching material for his father to work with. They were now cutting in to their hidden supplies, meant for only the most dire of days. Caelmot's father then barked at him to start making knives like the one he'd made for Caelmot when he was younger, but with as little metal as possible. Caelmot got to work, sweating despite the cool air of the day. Clouds hung in the sky, threatening to cast down rain upon the anxious city.
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PostSubject: Re: Redemption   Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:35 pm

After Tork learned of all the recent news, there was no more for him to gain if he were to stand around. Despite the dire announcement, he went to the market and found it was empty of everyone including the merchant. He grabbed a chunk of roast and placed the money on the till of the stall. He rushed home to help cook an early dinner, while Caelmot's request repeated over in his mind. He would go to bed early tonight to ensure that he arrived on time.
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Redemption
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