Re: Nothing but a Shadow in the Night #Jaya #zaire #Oseanie


Steph
 

Who: Jaya

With: Zaire, Oseanie, Other Beach Party Pals

Where:  Island of the Pirates

When: May 16, 877 ROK, Evening


Oseanie: “Your kind are in the West, too, spewing the same bullshit to Rossi and her undead sycophants. Telling that bitch the same thing about stabbing him in the back. You’re liars; you’re worse than liars…!”


Zaire: "That it? Y'all can't claim to be neutral if ye go an' remove that problem piece. Yer 'ands are tied." His eyes were dark in the speckled skin of his face, intent, as he asked, "Y'need a dagger and I 'ave the best chance of bein' it?"


Jaya sat still as Oseanie berated her for being a dishonest liar and tried to tear down the reputation of the whole Peacekeepers organization along with her. This was always the thing with politics. She kept her hands folded neatly in her lap, her expression as cool and pleasant as if Oseanie had just been complimenting Jaya on her dress or some other equally bland thing. Jaya couldn't afford to get emotional at a time like this.


Ultimately, her job was to bring Zaire to the table, not to prove that the Peacekeepers were pure in heart, mind, spirit, and action. She released a bit of tension from her shoulders when Zaire followed up his declaration that this was bullshit with a thoughtful, calculated, reasonable explanation. She smiled a bit at it.


"Officially, I'm here to provide you with an invitation to the Peace Summit and address any concerns you might have, to persuade you to join us in the People's City," Jaya said. "Officially, the Founders of the Peacekeepers don't know why I have such a good relationship with you. Officially, they think it's a bit odd that an accountant like me who helps merchants balance their books can get on with the Pirate King."


She leaned in a touch, her shoulders hunching forward conspiratorially. "Unofficially, I've been sent on too many peacekeeping missions in the Western Plains where my hands are tied by our good-faith policies and I have to pretend I don't see how the bloodsucker given noble lands and titles put on a good show when anyone's looking directly at them, but their serfs and servants are looking a little anemic and covering their necks, keeping their heads down, afraid of reprisals."


She glanced over to Oseanie. "You say my kind is telling Francesca what I'm telling you? You have to realize we're one kind." She gestured to herself, to all the humans in the room. "The merfolk, humans, pixies,  centaurs, all of us are living people.  Vampires? They're creatures. Predators. Monsters. No royal decree will ever change that."


She had to swallow and push back memories from a time long enough ago that she would have expected the pain to be smoothed over by now, but the edges were always just as sharp as ever.


"I'm being honest with you, trusting you with my feelings and my desires because the bitch that sold out the people of the Plains to one bloodthirsty monster to keep them safe from the flesh-eating monsters doesn't deserve a crown on her head. "Unofficially, I've done more than a bit of accounting on your behalf, and I wouldn't mind helping you balance her accounts."


She sat up a little straighter. "So, let's say you come and play nice. Maybe we experience an ideal world where everyone talks peace and reaches some nice accords and no violence breaks out at all. Maybe you lay the groundwork to do this particular deed in a more subtle way after the Summit. Or, maybe you have the opportunity to do a little violence, and you take it. I can tell you for certain, though, if you don't attend, you'll be wondering what everyone there says about you, what deals they're making regarding you, where you're being left out."


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