Topics

Stay Up on That Rise, and Never Come Down #Jaya #Brandy #Tristan


Steph
 

Who: Jaya
With: Brandy, Tristan
Where: The Western Plains, approaching Lord Oskar's Manor
When: March 28th, 872 RoK

If warlords threatened the local populace, there was one assassin they could call upon to face the threat--for the right price: The Ghost Blade. This was the persona that Jaya had developed over her years of time in Eventyr. This was an identity she'd enjoyed building up. The ways that she cleverly infiltrated warlords' camps and worked to thwart them, the satisfaction of knowing that she'd done right by the common folk and repaid a debt to them, the stories that followed her, the way that she swore her cloak billowed with more and more ominous power over the years.

After everything else that had gone down lately, it was satisfying to have the jingle of commoners' coins in her pocke again and the assurance that she was about to face off with a true monster. And two friends at her side--both well and unexpectedly met at a nearby tavern. Brandy, as it turned out, had just been in the area doing her roaming bartender thing. (Jaya tried not to be too mad at her for renting out her room in King's City--again.) Tristan had been looking for some heroic things to do. And Jaya didn't mind splitting the coin for this job.

"Since they're vampires, we should be able to approach their home by daylight and take them both by surprise," Jaya said. Her shadowy cloak rippled around her while she walked, but she had the hood down since it was just her and two generally trustworthy companions. "They're weaker by daylight--some of them are so weak they just sleep all day. Somehow, I don't think we'll get quite that lucky. They'll have tricks up their sleeves, considering their status. But the humans of the manor are our allies in this. They're afraid. They'll help us--or at least they won't get in our way."

She hoped, at least. Fear could do strange things to people, and vampires could do still stranger things, after all.

<tag!>


Rachel
 

"I wouldn't count on that," Brandy responded, far more skeptically. From what she could tell, many of these vampire thralls were like heroine addicts - hopelessly addicted to the fix their vampires could provide. That made them irrational… but ultimately predictable. And so her gut instinct clearly contrasted with Jaya'a - could the humans be counted on? Or were they definitely going to an obstacle? 


Jaya probably knew better, Brandy reasoned. She didn't know all that much about vampires thralls, except that Zaire and his crew of otherwise rational men had all but sold their souls to the Vampire Queen of the West. 


It wasn't that easy. But it was easy to pretend it was. 


"These vamps are probably just hitting REM," Brandy said. "They'll be out. All the same, we're probably going to have to go underground to find their lair…" And she punctuated this thought with a roll of her eyes. 


And so the key question remained: "So…." it was an uncomfortable question. "Do we kill the thralls?"


Tags!



Vincent Gonzales
 

"The path of least resistance," Tristan responded quietly, from his place taking up the rear of the pack where he could keep an eye on their trail and their surroundings more comfortably. He'd come armed for the fight, dressed in his usual armor, and was keenly aware that things were almost certainly going to lead to bloodshed sooner or later. But if they could avoid it, if even for a short while...

"We'd do best to try and avoid the thralls, if we can, or reason with them if we can't. But if they're too far gone, we're better off putting them out of their misery. We'll save more lives by killing the vampires than we will by letting ourselves get captured and fed on because someone gets squeamish at the last moment."

Tristan found his old military training and the mentality that came with it rearing up, here, as he found himself checking and re-checking his weapons. Sure, it was a sword, dagger, and crossbow instead of a sidearm and rifle, but the nervous tension in his gut was the same. This was something he knew. A familiar situation he felt almost too comfortable with. In Eventyr, he had friends. He had people who depended on him. He was skilled. Needed. And he could walk. 

If it weren't for his grandmother, he'd told himself over his most recent time back home, he'd probably just step through to Eventyr and never come back...

"What do we know about vampire weaknesses, aside from sunlight?" Tristan asked, trying to divert his thoughts back to the present, and separate fact from common fictions if he could. 

tags!


Steph
 

Who: Jaya
With: Brandy, Tristan
Where: The Western Plains, approaching Lord Oskar's Manor
When: March 28th, 872 RoK

Jaya did have to admit that Brandy brought up a good point. As much as she wanted to be hopeful that the humans who'd hired them to deal with this threat would be all the humans they'd have to worry about, thralls were a problem. She felt a small sense of relief when Tristan picked up the question and offered the practical answer, even if it was the cruel one.

And, until she'd really started to think about the likelihood that there were more people from Earth than just the ones she'd encountered thus far, she would have been right on board with the sentiment. Now, she hesitated. How many of those thralls were New Yorkers getting a little fantasy fix over the holiday break? Was there any way to be sure?

If Eventyrians were descended from New Yorkers, did that mean their lives were worth any less?

And, what if one of those thralls shoved something into Jaya's hands and it left Jaya with that feeling of indebtedness that seemed to overtake her here sometimes.

She unconsciously tightened her grip on one of the knives she wore at her hip, anchoring herself in the moment. Worrying about those what-ifs wouldn't help.

"We prioritize our lives first," she decided. "As for weaknesses, I've helped slay a few in the past. Decapitation, fire, totally taking out their heart--that seems to do it. I've never tried the other Dracula staples, like garlic." She glanced over at Brandy. "Is there even garlic around these parts? I swear you've cooked with it before--or something close enough to it."

Name-dropping Dracula was intentional. She didn't know Tristan well, but maybe she could get a sense of whether he was from Earth or not from that. If he showed no recognition, she could brush it off as an old story from her home village.

<Tag!>


Rachel
 

Tristan: "The path of least resistance," "We'd do best to try and avoid the thralls, if we can, or reason with them if we can't. But if they're too far gone, we're better off putting them out of their misery. We'll save more lives by killing the vampires than we will by letting ourselves get captured and fed on because someone gets squeamish at the last moment."


Those were people, Brandy wanted to argue, but she knew Tristan was right. They had to approach this as a zero-sum game: either they won, or the vampires did. And once night fell again, the game changed in their enemy's favor, and they couldn't risk that… 


Brandy knew she could deliver a killing blow, though.She wouldn't have the stomach for it.


But she could hand over the knife… watch the door... be complicit. Brandy could make peace with the idea of that much. She thought - she hoped. Or, hoped she hoped. It wasn't an easy idea to digest, even as much as she knew the importance of the task before them. 


Tristan: "What do we know about vampire weaknesses, aside from sunlight?"


Jaya: "We prioritize our lives first," "As for weaknesses, I've helped slay a few in the past. Decapitation, fire, totally taking out their heart--that seems to do it. I've never tried the other Dracula staples, like garlic." "Is there even garlic around these parts? I swear you've cooked with it before--or something close enough to it."


"Yeah, I don't think pasta's their vice," Brandy quipped. The truth was that she had no idea if garlic would be a deterrent… but somehow, she doubted it. There was a blurry sort of division between the stories from Earth and the realities of Eventyr. But, they didn't have Christianity here, so a cross wouldn't work. And Brandy couldn't think of any example of a vampire being put off by a strong smell here…


Only after this very practical, culinary approach did her eyes wander to Tristan. "Dracula" was such a common allusion to her, and Jaya such a familiar face, that it had taken her a moment to realize that their companion may not have been in on the joke.... 


Or maybe he was. It didn't hurt to push - Zaire had never gotten her jokes, but he hadn't called her a witch for them either. 


"You know any stories that might help?" Brandy asked. "Dracuia? Nosferatu? Lestat? Spike? Edward...?"

Tags!