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* Plot Information for Nharkava

Rebellion has swept the Territory in the south as Glacia dominates the north. Landen and Blood join forces to spread a message of equality with any method possible while Glacia works to infuse the land with power and the people with their Dark Beliefs. The Rebellion, led by a Council of Eight, is not always in agreement but none can resist the power, and the danger, the movement has generated.
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Author Topic: The Mask in the Market  (Read 272 times)

Description: tag: Rhysati

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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The Mask in the Market
« on: May 17, 17, 11:54:23 AM »
It was a day without training, and he sought to make the absolute most out of that fact. It was hard to scout when exhausted from the beatings he took and gave. Aarush was a talented teacher, and he instructed him well in the arts of katti samu, mardani khel and katti varase, and had taught him for the better part of six months. It was grueling, as always, but it was rewarding, as always. Even now, he felt bruised and battered from the training.

But he knew there was not wildly more for him to learn, as the forms were ones that were not too wildly far apart from the very first forms he learned - the forms he learned before even Chaillotan fencing - which made him suspicious of shared ancestry, but he did little to bother the man about it. No, he only cared to learn, and mastery was his primary goal.

But Nharkava was not a place he came to try to master another style or three of swordfighting. No, he had come here to find a Glacian who might need a bodyguard for their return to Glacia. Rumors had it that the northern pass into Dea al Mon was easier tred, and he had been rebuffed in his attempts to take the southern pass already. It had been years, and loose lips whispered that envoys were daring out, and that meant he needed to find a way to Glacia, a welcomed way, to find his way to then protect or bribe an elf back to their home with him in tow. It would be difficult, but there were only two societies where battle began in childhood: the Eyriens and the Elves. And without wings, there was painfully little for him to learn other than how to defend against Eyrien attacks. But those of Dea al Mon had so many secrets he could only dream of learning.

Knowing his training here was nearly done, he had begun to step up the rotation of his scouting, and today, it took him through the markets of the capitol. This would not be a quick thing, and could not be done with cold opens, so he waited for a moment and an opportunity; and that meant he was very patient and relaxed as he traveled from one stall to the next, inspecting wares and buying tchotchkes and chocolates and more, enjoying the scent and taste of spices and the feel of the fine fabrics he came upon.

Hours wore on, and he enjoyed a nice bhapaa aloo, popping the potatoes into his mouth out of the wicker bowl he had been given to enjoy it in while walking. Hanging from his elbow was a cloth bag he carried, and it was burdened with some of his more impulsive purchases that he considered to celebrate the craftsmanship of their makers. As he finished his bowl, scooping two fingers through to gather dregs, he licked his fingers clean when he spotted someone moving through the maze, and he vanished the bowl with a dismissive flick before he lunged out. “Mora?!” he called after, but she did not seem to respond.

But her entire body seemed to respond when he grabbed for her arm presumptively. “Mora?” he asked, again, turning his body and craning his neck to try to catch her face, to see if he was right. How could she even be here? What purpose could this mercenary have in Nharkava, of all places?

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 17, 12:29:37 PM »
Well shit. Rhysati Stone thought to herself as a name she did not want to hear echoed through the market.

Mora Summers was a Sceltic Mercenary who dressed in leathers or warm Sceltic garb, and who never would have left the comfort (and profitibility) of Scelt. It was a role that Rhysati had taken on over six years ago during her travels through Kaeleer on behalf of the Queen of Dharo's Spy organization. Rhysati was not much of a fighter, though she'd had some training, and the role of Mercenary hadn't been the easiest one to wear. But she'd had many successful missions in Scelt which had earned her a reputation among some of the Mercenary companies in the island Territory.

Mora Summers had remained in Scelt, where she belonged.

After a brief stop over in Dharo to debrief with the Spy Master and accept her latest mission and orders Rhysati had adopted another favorite persona - Kina Thorne.

Kina Thorne was a peddlar, trader and merchant who had free reign to wander through Kaeleer collecting goods and stories. It was a role she had played even longer than that of Mora Summers, and she had maintained contacts throughout the Realm.

It was the second shout of her other alias's name that caught her attention. Rhysati did not merely wear her alias but became them during her missions. It was often difficult for her to separate alias from self, and if the paths of any two aliases crossed it threw her completely. The reality of Kina Thorne's life as a peddlar was shattered at the second cry of "Mora!?".

Shaken Rhysati tried to regroup before the source of that shout caught up with her. She couldn't run from him and Kina sauntered more than ran. Mora would have strode with greater purpose and she found herself nearly frozen with indecision on how to continue in that moment.

Was she Kina? Or Mora?

You're Rhysati Stone, lass. A Spy for the Queen of Dharo. And a damn good one. The voice was sharp in her mind and came across in Rhysati's tone of voice with a hint of a Dharoan accent. Pull it together.

In nearly a decade of such work Rhysati had never found herself in such a situation. It was time to improvise. Immediately she straightened her posture and hardened her features. The bohemian look of Kina didn't quite fit the frame and body of Mora, but she embraced it never the less.

"Malcolm?" Surprise reached her face (that she didn't have to fake) and she glared at him, assessing the situation. The stare was deep and focused, as if she were determining if he were friend or foe.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 17, 02:40:05 PM »
His hand let go of her a little belatedly, as he just looked at her with such abject confusion. Everything about her was new other than her height; she was less muscular than he last recalled (or perhaps she dressed around it, he decided), her hair fell differently and might have even been a new shade, her face was done up in a level of makeup which Mora would’ve objected to unhesitantly, and she wore the softest of fabrics, without a weapon visible anywhere upon her. She even walked differently, which at first he wondered if it was some new injury, but it wasn’t a stilted gait – she just had new steps. It was absolutely baffling, and the confusion delayed him in his release of her.

And when he finally did, he just continued to look perplexed, silence for far too long. He was clearly Malcolm, and offered little explanation for his presence. The man she knew was in every way the same; his wardrobe changed, but barely, and even included many of the same leather pieces she remembered before. It was like he was some sort of quilt, picking up some new patches and losing others as he went along. Even that was quintessentially who he was: his world-weary stories of adventure and foreign places, and even that slight Chaillotan accent, had all even helped to entice her to him, likely. He had no way of knowing that she might have been especially attracted to the wandering soul that they shared in ways, since she made it clear she was a Sceltic with no love for other lands.

“The right fuck you doing here?” he asked, gesturing broadly through the market, his eyes focused so very tightly on her, trying to deduce what the hell he was even looking at. She was not the same woman, but he knew her intimately, and was certain all the same it was her. The features beneath the changes were clearly the same, her voice rang out almost right in how she said his name, and she clearly knew him. It was a jarring juxtaposition, all told. Wrong place, wrong look, but it was supposedly the same person.

“Sorry, just stunned. You’ve changed your look… and just so you know, you’re in Nharkava.” Shaking his head, he tried to give her the benefit of the doubt – surely there was some sensible answer to the drastic changes – but it was taking some doing, even as he willed it away.

“Still a damned happy coincidence, if a shock. Been an age.”

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 17, 06:07:16 AM »
A dozen options of how to extract herself from this mess flooded her mind, but all were discarded. After all, she was quite fond of Malcolm and had no desire to leave him for dead in the middle of a Nharkavan market. There was no guarantee that she would be able to successfully penetrate his shields and slip her knife between his ribs. Now that he was confused and concerned about seeing her there was no chance she could catch him unaware, which made any plans to fight him or kill him futile.

Instead she settled on the hard sell - that she was, in fact, Mora Summers.

She'd already shifted her demeanor to the harder stance and looks of Mora, and away from the gentler and more free spirit that was Kina Thorne. Transitions between roles had never been easy for Rhysati. She normally was so deeply embedded in each cover she possessed that extracting herself from the was like losing a limb or something precious. It had taken her over a week to work on the mental and physical transition from Mora to Kina back in Dharo.

Now she was being challenged to do it in mere seconds, and without the benefit of the correct costume.

Rhysati watched as confusion plastered across his face. Though she was fundamentally the same woman beneath all the guise and changes, there were many of them. She watched his eyes take it all in, as if he were looking at her for the first time. She had never thought of the comparisons between Mora and Kina before, and wondered if they could stand side by side what flaws she might see in her own creations.

"What am I doing here? A fucking job, Malcolm. What else? What are you doing here?" She challenged. Mora was far more aggressive than Kina, or even Rhysati. She embraced that element of the personality and focused her energy on exuding Mora, despite wearing the face and clothes of Kina. What a fucking messing. Mora said in her head.

"It's good to see a familiar face. Nothing here feels right. Like home does." Mora loved Scelt above all else. She as a tough woman who reflected the Territory.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 17, 09:10:46 AM »
She considered him for a moment, maybe a moment too long, and he suspected she was trying to find some good answer. Then, it seemed like something more, as the way she answered shifted so starkly.

The Warrior continued his look of confused uncertainty, as her demeanor suddenly changed, and she put on the role of Mora. The change was almost visible as her posture changed, her features shifted, and her voice even tightened to produce a margin of accent that was still finding its footing, if he wasn't wrong. Something was very uncomfortably strange here, he thought, and the look of doubt was absolutely evident on his face. A hand eased down, to rest on his belt, just inches from his hilt, a relaxed pose that also promised the potential of death. The effortless happiness, if confusion, he felt at seeing his old lover again had all but disintegrated in the wake of her sudden performance she turned on at a moment's notice, that he recognized immediately as some game he did not know the rules for.

"What am I doing here," he began, hesitantly, suddenly on guard as if she might not be who she said she was at all, perhaps some illusioned falsehood meant to catch him off guard. "I told you stories constantly of my travels, crossing this world and the next. I'm here learning katti samu and varase, and mardani khel, some new fighting styles. And seeking entrance to Glacia, to learn of fighting with their variation on the zweihander," he explained, watching her. She turned the question too sharply, he felt, especially when she should absolutely know of his propensity for impermanence in travel. After-all, he was the Sceltic man with the Chaillotan inflections.

"We should talk privately," he stated plainly, a man not prone towards dancing around anything but bonfires and the battlefield. There was little courtly dancing in him by his nature, though he would when obligated. A gestured nod indicated they should start walking, and he gestured with his hand not near a scabbard for her to walk out of the market with him, although he expected her to lead the way. "It'll give you time to sharpen those lies," he added, with a rueful smile, the joy of seeing her washed well clean of him.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 17, 11:23:29 AM »
Would he kill her for the duplicity? Rhysati thought she had known Malcolm quite well - certainly she knew every inch of his well honed body, and each scar as if it were her own. She was a realistic woman as well. She knew that in a fight he would have the upper hand and dispatch of her in minutes. In fact she wasn't even certain she could put up enough of a fight to last even that long.

She could run. Certainly with all of her time spent in these markets she'd be able to find a friend to help secret her away down a back alley. The temptation made her feet itch to make a dash but Rhysati inherently understood that she wouldn't outrun him even if everyone in the market offered her assistance. There was no one left to mourn her in this world. She'd never let anyone get close enough to form true friendships, and the only real connection she had was with Dharo's Spy Master. While the Spy Master might mourn the loss of Rhysati's talents it wouldn't be long until she recruited and trained a replacement to take her routes.

Rhysati's eyes connected where his hand casually lay at his belt. The man was deadly, and once that had been a powerful attraction for Rhysati (or rather Mora), but she had to admit being a little terrified at that very moment.

Rather than risk pissing him off further she put one foot in front of the other at his suggest to talk privately. No one would hear her scream in private.

"Privately. Right. This way." There was a sense of resignation in her tone, though she maintained the slightly soft Sceltic accent despite his accusing eyes. With a straight back and shrouded in what remained of her bravado, Rhysati headed out of the market on a route she knew with too much familiarity.

Rhysati lead him to an alley which turned a corner into a dead end. There was only one door in the alley, which looked like it hadn't been opened in months, and a few rotting crates but little else. "Would you care to shield then?" She suggested pointing to the corner that lead back the way then came. The bravado of the Sceltic mercenary began to melt away but it wasn't replaced with the sensuality of the peddlar.

A harder woman seemed to appear. A world weary woman. This woman had intelligent eyes which hinted at a darkness that hadn't even been present in the personality of Mora Summers.

Rhysati had never truly exposed herself in such a manner before to anyone, except perhaps the Spy Master. She had learned many years ago to become the alias she was portraying. The chamelon like tendencies of the Spy were what made her such a skilled asset to the Territory of Dharo.

"I can't tell you the truth." This time the accent was gone, replaced with her actual voice. It was far less lyrical than Mora Summers, and far harder than Kina Thorne. There were traces of a country accent, native to Dharo, but she suspected only another trained Spy could pick up on such intricacies. Then again, Malcom was exceptionally well traveled. "What I can tell you was that you were the best lover a witch could have found in Scelt. I don't regret that even if it ultimately led to this encounter."
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 17, 11:38:29 AM »
Following her, they did not head towards some hovel she had found here, but to some deserted alley. It was a desolate place, and she asked him to shield, and with a wave of his hand he did so, gladly, the Red glaring out in its use, and then the green. Sound, sight and physical, all barred at varying degrees, strongly reinforced, because he was as wary of being ambushed by whatever this treachery was as she was of being overheard, it turned out.

She shifted anew, like a snake shedding her skin, and his brows somehow managed to furrow more than they already had. The tension of it was almost giving the mercenary a headache. Then she spoke, and he was dumbstruck by the change again.

He was, in fact, well-traveled, and he had learned to try to hide the soft twist of his Chaillotan accent himself, often wrapping it in local tones to help mask his true origin for the comfort or deception of others. Accents were something he studied, and he had falsified his own Dharoan accent himself only a few years ago. It struck him that her Sceltic accent had been made to mask something that sounded at first a touch Dharoan itself; but this one was something else, too, even if native there. A city and country variation, his instincts sang, but he was absolutely puzzled at the spectacle of variance before him.

She was a third woman now. The woman he saw in the market, the woman who became Mora in the same, and now in this alley, a third woman, who seemed weary but wary, and he was beyond confused. As his usual tac goes, he was not one for dancing on such issues, and announced his current mood. "I have no idea what the fuck you're talking about, or what the fuck is going on," he insisted, eyes bouncing back and forth from her to the alley and back. Was this a trap?

"Is this a trap? What are you doing?" he asked, the context for this entire experience completely lost to him, and he pushed right past the flattery which only served to confound him more.

"Tell me something that makes any sense, Mora. Why are you in Nharkava? What are you doing with your... walk and your ... voice and... what is this?" His hand had not left his belt, but it had not eased any closer to his scabbard. He was willing to go there, but he was hesitant to escalate it by making the motion to prepare more than he already was.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #7 on: May 25, 17, 12:17:04 PM »
Malcolm's confusion would have been amusing if Rhysati wasn't fearing that he'd turn on her at any moment. The answers he wanted, or rather demanded, were not free to give. The first thing a Spy learned was never to admit that she was, actually, a spy. Yet there was no other answer for the questions he was posing. Weariness entered Rhysati's eyes and she wondered how she would extract herself from this mess. She was the only Spy, at least from the Court's contingent, to be in Nharkava. It was a Territory that didn't often sit on the Dharoan radar but with the changes and influences from Glacia she'd made it a common route during her trade expeditions as Kina Thorne.

"It's not a trap." No, the role of scout meant that Rhysati almost always worked alone. It was a lonely existence which explained why she had eagerly accepted a place in Malcolm's bed when she was in Scelt. His prowess was the reason she continued to return to that bed. Though Rhys now worried she'd blown her alias as a Sceltic mercenary quite thoroughly. She doubted there would be a place for her in those ranks again after this chance encounter.

"I'm not stupid enough to lure you into a trap of any kind, Malcolm. I think you know that much to be true. I work in multiple Territories, Scelt being only one of them." She tried to explain. If she said anything more he would grasp the truth too quickly and then she'd be forced to burn both identities, and report her failure back to Coventry. It could put Malcolm's life at risk if the Spy Master determined him to be a threat and Rhysati desperately didn't want that.

"One learns to adapt to the Territory in order to survive. Most don't like outsiders." While true, it at least didn't paint the entire picture for the Mercenary. "It's still me though. Where it counts. Accent, clothes, walk - that doesn't change who I am beneath it all." Well, to be fair, it kind of did change who she was but that was an entirely different point.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 17, 12:30:47 PM »
She spoke of territories, of working them despite the fact he knew Mora damn well was supposedly Sceltic from the beginning to the end. It was all a surreal exchange that challenged everything he thought he knew about this girl. A girl who he had rather enjoyed a lifetime ago, and who he was happy to see just minutes before, right before confusion became the driving force.

Although it was there from the start: because Mora would have no business in Nharkava. She wasn't discussing Mora having different roles, she was discussing herself being Mora in Scelt and being... this... in Nharkava, for some bizarre reason. "The hell it doesn't. If I were to dress as a courtesan and wear scented oils, and fuck those who paid, then I'd be a courtesan, or maybe some kind of--"

His brows relaxed, slightly, finally, as he leaned back slowly. Stepping forward, he lowered his voice, hushed slightly. "You're a spy," he whispered, clarity overcoming him. It wasn't the first spy he had dealt with, sometimes bloodily. He did not wish to believe it of her, even when the logic was there already, because he had rather enjoyed himself with the persona she had presented. And ultimately, no one wants to believe themselves to have been made a fool.

"Hell's Fire, your name isn't even Mora," he concluded certainly a moment later, anger hiding in the Warlord Prince's voice.

He grouched, clear anger pulsing off the dangerous man opposite her. "It doesn't matter if you're the same beneath lies, if I don't know who that even fucking is. Was I your mark?"

At this point, his hand had slid to his hilt, at the curl of his last question, but his fist did not close over the pommel, just resting there to prepare for the eventualities. She was trapped here in this alley with him, so he figured if he was her mark, she had a reason to trust herself trapped here. There might be some secret, some way she had planned to take him.

He was vigilant now, eyes scanning for signs of betrayal, without leaving her to escape his gaze for even a moment beyond a sharp blink.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 17, 12:50:21 PM »
The idea of Malcolm as a Courtesan almost made her laugh at it's obsurdity. The image of him draped in expensive silks threatened to make her laugh; expensive leathers seemed more appropriate. The only time Rhysati had come into contact with expensive silks it had been while trading under the alias of Kina Thorne. And she was always more interested in the profit they would return than how it would feel against her skin.

Though it was the obvious conclusion she'd rather wished he'd remained ignorant. If she left the alley alive she would have to tell the Spy Master that she'd burned two of her covers. The two she'd possessed the longest and with whom she'd made the strongest connections. She'd spent nearly a decade as Kina Thorne, on and off, and about half of that as Mora Summers. Next time she'd have to commit to going blonde, and age herself better with paints. She'd been too comfortable as Kina to not imagine she could run into someone who might have known Mora. At least a handful of her other identities were safe, for the moment.

Rhysati kept a passive face as he accused her of being a Spy. Actually, the term used in Dharo for the role she played was Scout, but she wouldn't bother to correct him. She could not acknowledge the truth his in accusation, for his sake and her own.

"Do you think that if you were my mark I would have made this mistake? No, you were never a mark of any kind." The work that Rhysati did was often more broad in understanding the turmoil in the Territories and what whispers were on the street. She rarely had a specific mark. There were others within Dharo's organization that that more frequently fell to.

"My name is Mora more often than any other name, during these past few years." She said softly. "It's a name I answer to and a name I live as. That makes it my name as much as any other." Rhysati Stone, her actual name, was a name that hadn't been spoken out loud since she'd left the Spy Master's office in Dharo. It would be longer still until she heard the name spoken once more. There was no family to protect back in Dharo but it was the only identity that truly belonged to her and one she didn't intend to share with the world.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 17, 01:00:27 PM »
"That is more confession about you not being Mora than it is defense you are," he scoffed, indignant. Glancing briefly behind him, just for a moment, he wanted to be sure no one was on the other side of that shield. Nothing there, he relaxed, looking back to her. Then again, spies might be more careful.

"And this isn't a mistake if I don't leave alive," he reminded her, the reason for his hand on the pommel summarized in one defense. Clearly, he had greater faith in her abilities than she had at this moment, since she was caught so unaware, her voice real for the first time he'd ever heard it and that was somehow so very surreal.

"Fucking hell. I genuinely was excited to see you when I spotted you back there. Only to learn everything I know of you was part of some lie. Every touch, a deceit. Ugh. This is so uncomfortable."

He gestured, broadly, to this alley around them. "If your trap is going to spring, could you hurry it along? I've not got all year to while away, let's get my death done quickly so I can move on to haunting you full-time."

Hand left the pommel and he spread his arms, as if to invite her to attack him, along with whatever traps or allies she might have. Nothing galled him more than lies, other than treacherous death. He'd rather be spat on by someone who despised him, and face an army by himself, than deal with an assassin's blade, or a spy's deceptions. Anger pulsed off the Warlord Prince, who's neck tensed with his rage, and he felt a boiling point coming closer than he'd like, control being something he deeply valued and was losing now.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 17, 02:12:36 PM »
Why were the professions of Spies and Assassins always inter-tangled? Certainly they were not interchangeable. While Rhysati had killed it had always been in protection of herself and never in cold blood. It took a particular kind of detachment to take on the role of assassin. As troubled as Rhysati’s past was she had never shucked her morals enough to perform any mission oriented task that could be construed as assassination.

“You’re free to leave whenever you so desire, Malcolm.” Rhysati reassured him gently. “There will be many more opportunities in your future to learn whatever fighting style suits you. I can assure you I am not, have never been, and will never be an assassin.”

There had been no mission criteria in Scelt which had instructed her to take a lover – that wasn’t the style of the Court of Dharo’s Spy Organization. Their pillow talk had never benefited her reports in any manner. No, those nights and interludes with Malcolm had been purely her choice (and her pleasure, truth be told).

“The touches were not a deceit or a lie. You’re reading too far into the entire situation. You’re not a target. I’m talking to you now as a courtesy to our former friendship. I owe you that much. But you can’t breathe a word of your suspicions to anyone, because a whisper in the wrong ear could cause both you and me a tremendous deal of trouble.” Rhysati had broken any number of Rhiannon Devine’s codes within their Spy Organization. If Malcolm unwittingly put himself in danger because of Rhysati she would feel unconscionably guilty. Guilt was not an emotion that served a spy well in her trade, and was best avoided at all cost.

The man certainly thought highly of her profession since he certainly knew that she was incapable of killing him on her own. He was far more skilled at combat and fighting than she, or Mora, had ever been. The training she’d received in Dharo had benefited her in the field in Scelt, but he had a tremendous amount of experience, strength and inherent skill that she could not duplicate.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 17, 07:06:40 PM »
Moving close to her, his hand moving from his pommel, he was no less on edge than he was before. The man looked close to snapping. To his credit, his world had been well and truly tested in these past hours, but he still did not like the way he felt his mind breaking with the rush of anger he felt. Priding himself on his more carefree approach to life, this was an unwelcome sensation and the killing edge brushed at his periphery. She had deceived him, and was making excuses.

But he reminded himself: he had never planned to see her again. She was a happy occurence, but she was still just that. Months of enjoyment were had, and it was quite a beautiful season of intermittent passions, which she seemed to infer might hold some truth in their essence, even if it was nowhere else. He tried to use that to center himself and this rage he felt so venomously towards her in this moment. Eyes flashed with threat that he sought to see subdued, but the betrayal burned inside him. And he let that pain forward as he stalked closer, inches from her. "The cruelest thing you did was make me care at all, then. I told you about the lies I lived. How those hurt. This pains me. And I don't even know your name. I'm not calling you Mora."

Sneering, he looked aside, head downcast as his nails dug into the leather strap across his fist, burning pain shocked through his hand as he tried his best to shut out his pain and anger with another source of sharp injury. Something to deflect the harsh thought. "You needn't worry. I'm not in the habit of sharing secrets. You're secret is safe as can be in my hands, Lady Mystery." His words were a vow, even if bitterly given, and capped with a new name he chose to give her. Something that would better summarize who she was than this Mora woman that she only pretended to be.

A hand raised to brush at her hair, fingers still wanting to clench and pull, drag it in his fist with anger and severity. "Not even a blonde," he laughed, the absurdity seeming to soften some of that killing anger he had, even if a sort of maudlin resentment remained proudly displayed in this encased and private alley she has found herself trapped within by this dangerous man who seems to have taken her false personas unreasonably personal.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #13 on: May 26, 17, 10:30:52 AM »
Rhysati sensed that she might have pushed him too far, but she couldn't retract the words she'd spoken. She had a sense that no matter what she said just now it wouldn't help to diffuse the situation. There were Spies trained to handle such situations but Rhysati was never meant to be facing off with an an angry, and powerful, male in a shielded alley in Nharkava. Her training hadn't covered such a scenario. If she left the alley alive she'd have to tell the Spy Master that the training needed to be adjusted for the next generation of Spies.

Ultimately it was Rhysati's own fault for having slept with Malcolm back in Scelt. She had allowed him too close and that had granted him the knowledge to be able to pick her out of a crowd in Nharkava. Rhysati had no one to blame but herself in this disasterous mess.

Malcolm stepped closer but Rhysati held her ground, channeling just a touch of Mora's personality to grant her the confidence to not flinch in the face of his anger and her dwindling personal space.

"I'm a brunette." Rhysati clarified with a sardonic half smile. Truthfully she had worn many shades of hair colour, having such unique colouring that nearly all looked natural. The coppery red she had tried during her early days in Scelt had never quite worked though, and that's why she had shifted to the dirty blonde. She'd rarely changed eye colours though, given that it couldn't be done naturally and required some craft.

Rhysati worried her lower lip between her teeth for a second before commiting to giving him a name to call her. She could have said Kina, but she feared she'd anger him further if he heard the inherent lie, and she didn't want to fully burn the identity.

"Why don't you call me Rhee? Though I rathe fancy 'Lady Mystery', but the title of lady is an absolute misnomer." She hadn't been called Rhee since her childhood but it wasn't a name that could be easily traced back to the spy named Rhysati, and whom was known as Rhys in some circles. Both of those names were not options she could consider, but Rhee was different and it came from another part of her life. The part that she kept only for herself.

   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #14 on: May 26, 17, 11:15:49 AM »
She confessed to her hair color and he shook his head, trying to let this become the funny thing he wanted to let it be, something that could bring a calm and a peace to a moment far too close to him pulling free blades he would rather remain sheathed.

"Me, too," he conceded to her the truth of his own hair color, a rueful smile painting his lips, as he tried so very hard to push past this boiling anger deep in his chest. He knew as well as she was how dangerous a point he danced on was, blood being what his soul screamed for, and truth being what his mind yearned to have, and understanding what his heart demanded louder than either of them. She was a brunette: he hoped it to be the truth, and urged himself to try to believe it, even as fear gripped him that every word could be a lie. Every look could be a lie. Every touch could be a lie.

She gave him a new name, hesitantly and with some level of dance in her words: he wondered what that meant. He dared to dream it might be a nickname she truly held, something that was not a lie, even though he knew instantly it also wasn't the truth, either. "Tell me no lies, but you may tell me nothing instead when you would lie," he urged, and awaited to see if she stood her ground at the offer of Rhee. And when she did not countermand it, he reluctantly considered accepting the offer she gave him. His eyes stared into hers, seeking her reaction, her deceit, but her eyes did not betray her further, if there was any lie still there.

"Rhee," he repeated, softly, testing out its sound, its authenticity.

He breathed it again, softer still, tasting it this time, feeling how it felt to let it slide through his lips, eyes closed for a moment to savor it, "Rhee."

Deep in his throat rest something almost a growl and he stepped forward once more, his eyes snapping open to find hers, that anger still burning so deeply inside him, demanding resolution. Demanding a fight, demanding a war, demanding blood. And he sought to sate it with something less, and let his heart demand its own truth: to know if there is a lie in this touch, now that he looked for it.

"Rhee," he growled darkly, and rushed his leather-clad hand forward to grip behind her ear and cup along the crest of her jaw, pulling her almost aggressively to him as he lunged forward to claim her lips in a kiss that was absolute in its demands. Parting quickly, he sought her tongue, wanting to feel every inch of her touch, to taste the lies that yet rested there, his other hand moving rapidly to grasp her ass, clad as it was in soft fabrics, to mold her to him. The shield yet held; she could see out as people passed through the market, but none looked within. Perhaps it was Crafted so none could. It was certainly sealed against sound, and against entry or escape. Her fate was likely entirely in his hands, just as her face and her taut flesh was now.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #15 on: May 26, 17, 11:52:58 AM »
The situation was definitely not in her control but she clung to the old trust she'd had in this Mercenary back in Scelt. Never before had she trusted anyone to this level though. Malcolm now knew more about her real self than anyone else in the Realm, bar her Spy Master, knew - including colleagues she had taken missions with in the past. Rhysati certainly had encountered many of Dharo's inter-Realm based spies, but they had only ever known exactly what she wanted.

Her nickname on his tongue was alarming initially and then intoxicatingly nostalgic. When was the last time someone had spoken that name to her? It had been an age. It had been another life all together.

Rhysati watched his eyes as she tried to work out what the next move in their dance would be. Would he merely release her? Would he fight her? Would he kill her in this alley? Though the danger was very real her instincts weren't screaming for her to run. That trust from Scelt seemed to linger within Rhysati as she stood nearly toe to toe with the man and his very turbulent emotions.

The shift was near instantaneous as he grasped her head and pulled her tight against his body. The kiss was as much of a surprise as it was the natural progression of their encounter. Neither Malcolm nor Rhystai were particularly verbose individuals and the physical aspect of their friendship had always been natural between them even when words were not.

It was different now than what her memory recalled, especially during those lonely nights on the peddlar's trail. Though he still wore leather she was far more vulnerable in the soft clothes of a woman who should not know how to fight. Those clothes seemed to make her more pliable. She didn't once think about the strangers passing on the street. He managed to command her attention with terrifying ease. Without thought Rhysati wrapped her arms around his neck and pressed closer, if that were even possible.

With a sharp gasp she broke the kiss finally. "So you're not going to kill me, Malcolm?" She asked with a softly teasing voice as she pressed her hips against his and finding pleasure at the hardness she sensed beneath the leather.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #16 on: May 27, 17, 03:16:27 AM »
She asked him in the break of that sudden and ravenous kiss whether he was going to kill her or not. The Warlord Prince did not deign to answer her directly, her sharp gasp granting her breath as his lips ducked down to kiss at her neck briefly, teeth dragging along soft skin, thoughtless of any marks he might leave. The merchant girl, in her fine silks, was at his mercy, and she had all but moaned into his mouth with surrender.

Breaking his lips work on her soft skin, he lurched back and undid two clasps, which threw back to leave straps and their armor pads sliding back over him and then the leather now little more than a shirt when he pulled it off quickly over his head. Discarded on the floor of this dirty alley, it was forgotten as he then pulled back the fabric vest underneath, pushing it aside to drop off his shoulders, leaving him in nothing on his chest except a red scarf which hung down tantalizingly across his stomach. Hands moving back to her, his strong hands reached for the fabric at her neck, and he gave her no respect or consideration as he pulled it hard, parting it viciously at her shoulders, to reveal her body to him. He groaned with his need for her, and murmured it aloud. "Rhee," he called in such abject desire, hands seeking her again, as he lifted her up and forced her her against the grimy wall behind her, the concrete cold and hard against her back as he reached between her thighs to pull aside any barrier that might forbid him what he so desperately needed.

Balanced on the edge of violence, he now seemed to barely be held back from its mirror, the rut whispering at his edges, and he was little but beast as he forced down his breeches. There was so little effort to make this polite, to ready her for what he wished to give her. The furious Mercenary, who sought solace in the one thing he prayed was not a lie, did not give ample time for much of anything from the woman before him.

He often showed delicate care, his fingers so very agile, his tongue so attentive, seeking to roll her towards a climax if not through one long before he ever filled her with his thick shaft. The Mercenary considered himself a master at every form of battle, and considered sex to be much the same, wanting his partner to feel overwhelmed, conquered, breathless and tasting the abyss long before he ever filled them with his every inch.

She felt none of his care and love and tenderness; he needed her in a way that was a primal demand, and her only true warning beyond the pulled aside fabrics was the feel of the arrow's point of his shaft as it was guided towards her ill-prepared core. And he did not act with expert kindness, guiding it in a bit at a time to prepare her and guide her along. He cried out her name, again, "RHEE," as she felt him suddenly jerk forward, that thick crown parting her with force and certainty. Her heat, growing slick but not yet slick enough for him, still forcibly welcomed him as he pushed her back against the brick with strength that sang of his honed form.

Grunting, he ducked his head in, to capture her heaving breast in his lips, teeth dragging dangerously along the tempting flesh before his mouth closed to snap and tug tenderly at the peak of her increasingly abused breast. Moaning into her skin, his hips forced forward anew, grinding her into that brick face as he gave her yet more, filling her in a series of small, insistent thrusts that planted all of himself inside of the spy, no matter just how ready; his mind began to unravel as he saw nothing in the growing haze but her, that delicious body, and the need he had to exorcise every last ounce of his rage by using her now, here, with the world passing them by.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #17 on: May 28, 17, 11:03:13 AM »
The question remained unanswered and then quickly forgotten.  It became clear that, for the moment, she was not in danger of dying by Malcolm’s hands – unless one were to consider the Terreillien euphemism for an orgasm, the ‘little death’.

Rhysati was at his complete mercy and there was something powerfully erotic in their coupling. The back alley, a foreign territory, and the anger that lingered in the air and mingled with their psychic scents was a heady rush for the spy. His teeth scraped against her throat and she gasped with pleasure. When he stepped back to remove his layers of armour and leather she watched through heavily lidded eyes, taking in every inch of his form as he revealed it. He was every bit as muscular as she remembered, but there seemed to be a few more scars since the last time she’d seen him. Her fingers ached to trace those scars on his muscled form but she remained still, like a rabbit in witchlight.

Malcolm ripped the blouse to expose her shoulder and breasts, but she barely had time to moan before he had lifted her against the rough wall. She felt it scrape against her skin but it only heightened her pleasure as she helped to hike the flowing skirts to her waist, removing any fabric that remained between them with a sense of urgency she’d not felt since her Offering, when she’d discovered her sensuality and the pleasure that accompanied it.

Warlord Princes were unpredictable and dangerous, but Rhysati was pleased that her gamble of half-truths had paid off thus far. She was still alive and he was reminding her of that fact in the most glorious of manners.

Nothing about this encounter harkened back to their sweeter love making in Scelt. In comparison this coupling was rough, fast, and demanding. And sinfully delightful.

The rough and thrusting intrusion left her stretched and uncomfortable at first but the excitement grew with each primal thrust. The pain, mixed with the pleasure, was overwhelming and she leaned her head back against the wall while she clung to him with arms, legs and her inner muscles. “Malcolm.” She returned his cry with a harsh moan. It wasn’t long until his mouth found her breast and in reaction she dug her nails into his shoulders and arched her back, offering him more.

The wall bit into her exposed skin but it only excited Rhysati more. The roughness was not something she’d experienced with a lover before, even in Scelt Malcolm had a certain gentleness that belied his rough exterior. This was something else entirely and Rhysati was surprised she found it overwhelmingly erotic.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #18 on: May 29, 17, 04:06:17 AM »
The danger had not yet abated her; he was not yet surrendered to the emotions that would demand such crueler action of him, mindless and uncontrolled. But to her, having never felt such violence in her man's touch, she might just think this to be the very same. Even now, he feared the Rut which sang for him on his periphery, and he ensured its silence by giving his darkest needs just what they really want.
 
And they want her. Rhee, nude, speared on his lance. She cried for him, and he began to more growl than call his own desires, grunting and grimacing with the focus, anger and pleasure he felt all wrapped into one as he gave her the full breadth of his strength and passion. The spy who called herself scout found herself thankful for how quickly her body surrendered, as it semed questionable if Mal would ever stop until he'd had his fill of her.
 
And it was clear he had no intentions to stop. In this stage, he thought of nothing but the feeling of being inside of her again, and again. Each roughly forced clap of his hips sent him violently inside of her slickening walls that welcomed him eagerly against his every angry motion. His hips crashed into her own and in turn drove her angrily into the brick wall he had forced her against so he could use her so madly. The stone resisted, obstinately, forcing her flesh to bruise against it when her lover and enemy fucked her hard into its unyielding surface.
 
And amidst it all, she'd find his lips and teeth proved no more gentle than his well-pistoned cock. Dragging with intention along her supple flesh, down the crest of her desperately heaving breasts, his teeth snapped into a bite at the peak of her, all but mauling her with his touch. Tongue only even bothered to be put to its use as an afterthought, flicking and rolling along her engorged nipple as if he wished to apologize for the sharp bite... if not for the fact he would repeat the same a moment later, tugging less than gently in hopes of hearing her cry aloud while he used her to sheath himself inside his new conquest with such ravenous intent.

Comfort, kindness, permission, these were all disregarded in this moment as he sought only one final meaning to bring sense to himself while visiting this intensity upon his willing victim: hunger.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #19 on: May 29, 17, 11:49:47 AM »
The intensity of their coupling was a powerful aphrodisiac for Rhysati, as it turned out. Fear had been replaced by desire and she was riding a powerful wave of it as she rode Malcolm in the alley. Warlord Princes were entirely an unpredictable caste and though she had danced with many in Scelt on the field of battle (and practice), Malcolm was the only one she’d previously bedded. This felt angrier and darker than anything they had shared before and Rhysati had to guess it was infused with his raw emotions at discovering the truth about the spy.

“Mal.” She cried out and urged him on, practically begging him for release with that one syllable.

The sharpness of his teeth against her breast brought forth a whimper of pain infused with pleasure. Under other circumstances she would have chided him to be gentler but this was far from her usual circumstances. Tomorrow she would be bruised, scratched and scraped but she had not a concern for her state at the moment. Rhysati had none to answer to while in Nharkava. There were no other agents roaming those streets and her reports travelled a long route home. No one would miss her while she recovered. That was assuming she made it out of the alley alive.

Rhysati removed one of her hands from around his shoulders, unsheathing her nails from his back, and used it to grip his face as she steadied it for a bruising kiss. She ended it by nipping his lower lip and then pressing her head back against the wall and watching him from her vantage point with heavy eyelids and a desperate need for release.

“Please?” She asked now that she had his attention. Rhysati wasn’t even certain what she was asking for, but she was begging for something. Was it gentleness? A part of her wanted that but another voice argued against it, taking delight in the rough coupling.  Was it release? Most likely.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #20 on: May 30, 17, 09:14:22 AM »
The kiss was desperate and vicious, more battle than embrace as they traded their kiss, her nipping his lip and him assailing her own with a growling yearning for only more. When she lolled back, pressing herself against the wall to witness her own ravishing, he snarled his need and redoubled his savage efforts.

Already she was bruised, already her back scraped, already her blood stained the brick behind her, already her nails had drawn blood from his back as well, already her body was beyond slippery in its acceptance of the thick proof of Mal's hungry, vengeful need.

Already she was dangling on the precipice, ready to cum for the Warlord Prince between her thighs who angrily rutted into her welcoming depths.

"No," he growled his refusal. The man was not gentle, nor was he quickly finished with her. Grunting with his intensity of touch, naked hips violently crashing into her own, forcing within the spy the certain proof of his abject lust. He did not specify what he denied her; he denied her it all. If she wished permission, he did not grant it. If she wished the brutal fucking be turned somehow gentle and loving, she was not permitted the kindness. There was a deep fury that raged through him, hateful of what she stole from him and the betrayal of trust he felt, and he sought to release it all upon her with every cruel thrust he sent within her.

Pulling her cheeks into his hips, his hands forceful and fingers dug firmly into her bare flesh, he helped ensure the completion of every hard slap, his cock forced through her hard enough and fast enough it sounded as if there was applause echoing through this alley. As his pace quickened, they might have even heard a gasp, eyes cast into the alleyway, the shield having at some point dissipated from view. Several inquisitive onlookers stopped, staring in shock and perhaps some curiosity.

Mal was wholly unaware of their existence, of his Craft's failing while in the throes of his single-minded focus. His mouth dropped to her neck, teeth dragging over flesh and biting in against the woman's pale flesh, the Dharoan's skin marked by her ravenous and boundless lover who wished to leave her body firmly scarred by the lust he visited upon her. Biting her without kindness, he groaned as he fucked her with every ounce of his yearning and hatred unleashed upon her vulnerable and wanton form. And he would give her no mercy as he left a deep welt of his passion while claiming her for long minutes as the crowd continued on past the alley, people glancing as they passed for the sound and sight of the way this beautiful, bared woman was being claimed by the potent affections of her tormentor.

But even he had his limits, and the way she clenched about him, milked him with need for this to reach its culmination, could not see him limitless in this wild coupling. "Cum," he moaned, before his lips sealed again, biting just beneath her jaw for a moment. Driving himself with a now frenzied speed, his hands sliding back to under her thighs, her ass pressed against the brick as well. He railed within her, driving himself past the point of oblivion, the point of that madness reached and satisfaction ripped from him in his need.

There was no discussing stopping, no consideration of any access to her brew, there was only need.

And then the beast who claimed her followed his own advice. Lips torn from her neck, he cursed as his cock convulsed, his hips slapped a last time with unbelievable force as he buried himself to the hilt while pressing her harshly into the wall, and came. A rush of seed poured deep within her, and he called out only one word in his sudden release. "RHEE!" he urged, shocking a passerby as every muscle in him tightened and flared while he poured himself within the spy, thoughtless for consequence.

Offline Rhysati Stone

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #21 on: Jun 11, 17, 09:01:34 AM »
The coupling was one of the most vicious and rewarding battles that Rhysati had participated in. The give and take between them was reminiscent of parries and thrusts she had learned with a Sceltic sword during her time as a Mercenary. In that kind of battle she would have been at the disadvantage to find herself backed into a corner with her back against the wall.
 
The word “no” sounded like a command on Malcolm’s lips, which only made her want to defy him all the more. Her muscles tightened instinctively though she held back more for the pleasure of it than for obedience.
 
Rhysati was entirely unaware that the sight shields had dropped or that she was the distraction that caused Malcolm to forget about them. If she had been aware she would have reached for her Summer Sky to bring another layer of them onto the alley. And if she had been aware a dozen plans on how to explain why the respectable peddler Kina Thorne was so wantonly taking a lover in broad daylight.
 
The release came swift after he gave her permission to cum. The word seemed to drive Rhysati over a precipice on which she had been teetering. The plunge was glorious as she soared on the waves of pleasure racking her body and she clung to him tight with everything she had, moaning his name in release. “Mal.” The word carried weight which she barely understood.
 
Her body was aware of his release and her muscles convulsed still around his own orgasm, urging him to completion as she had found her own. Her arms felt weak where she clung to him, her breathing was ragged, and she was aware of the dull ache on her back which would be far worse for wear come morning. “Mother Night.” She whispered softly as she tried to regain control of herself.
   

Offline Malcolm Kinnaird

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Re: The Mask in the Market
« Reply #22 on: Jun 16, 17, 11:15:30 AM »
Grunting and sliding himself free from her well-fucked cunt, he moaned again at the feel of leaving her, of that pussy dragging against him as he left the warm welcome he had grown so very accustomed to in this dank alley. In the release of his need, the Warlord Prince seemed to recover from his flare of madness and rage that had nearly reached a point so much worse. Blinking heavily, freed of that risk of rut or killing edge, the man sighed while the fog cleared from his mind. Recently used cock still glistening with proof of their union, it hung heavily from his strong hips when he stumbled back, pants gathered at his ankles.

Eyes turned and he saw three sets of eyes gazing in on the lurid sight. Laughing at what had happened, he could barely keep it together, warmth filling his heart at the amusing knowledge of how awry that had went and the witnesses who had gathered to watch the athletic violence of Mad Mal's lust for the trader who only mewled and cried her own approval. A wave of his hand an a thrum of the ring sat on his thumb saw the world shuttered again, the Opal sealing them from sight and sound anew. Shaking his head, he looked back to her, and considered the sight before him.

She was lovely. She was well-used. And he still wanted more, he knew, his cock shivering with the desire to return itself to hardness again upon her lips or once more within her already used depths. "You alright? Sorry for any fright, I just... lying is a big thing to me. You knew that, back then. I felt angry, and... bloody hell, is that a fine way to slake one's angers."

A part of him considered not pulling anything up; seeing if she felt the urge to make an apology in a more base way. Another part considered commanding her to do just that; but ultimately he decided against either. Summoning from the void a clean rag, he used it to first wipe at his forehead, then reached down to wipe at his own cock, seeking to clean himself of their mixture. With himself tended, he'd offer it her. It had a clean side yet, and after-all, was only baring the sin that she herself would likely wish to have cleaned as well before she redressed herself.

Hell's Fire, he suddenly had one hell of an appetite. Reaching down to pull up his pants, he offered her a slightly sheepish smirk, as if that expression contained all the world's empathy for the way he had taken her so cruelly. He had been caught up in the heat of his emotions and she nearly suffered for it; he was deeply relieved against any guilt that might pang him by the fact she seemed to so intensely and thoroughly enjoy the abuse he and his cock had heaped upon her yearning body.

 

 

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