Betrayer. Scoundrel. Villain. Vagabond and masterless rogue, killer and saboteur. Just a few such names the prison guards had thrown at this particular individual at meal time for the last two years. Stripped of everything amd amything that could be valued, Prison 5877 was nothing more than a number with a bad history as far as the guards were concerned.
Which is what made the way Wilhelm, junior keeper of the keys in his early 30s with a salt and pepper beard and short cut brown hair, called him sound that much stranger.
"Hawke!" The man was out of breath as he fumbled with the keys at his belt in a desperate search for the proper key amid the dozens at his belt. "We don't have time. I don't have time. Get yourself gone! GO!" The key slid into the lock and clicked, Wilhelm brushed sweat and blood from his eyes as he tore at the leather straps at his neck. Puncture wounds dotted his flesh as it almost squirmed at his touch.
"You were a good man. I know you were." There was panic in his eyes, a thin trail of blood was oozing from his left socket. Soon the right began to do the same. "Forgive us." The longsword at Wilhelms hip was hastily tossed at the mans feet as a sickening CRACK came from the guardsmens torso, eliciting a scream of pain and another desperate glance at the burly prisoner. Of all the guards, Wilhelm had been fine as far as militants went. Quiet, honorable, dutiful. They had never truly spoken but there was acceptance between the two. Now, it had come time to do the right thing. The infection was burning in his lungs and violently attacking him from the inside. It festered and gnawed at him, the mutagenic nature was rapid and hellishly painful.
His hands had already taken on the blackened tone of the insect creatures below. A seam across his chin had split it wide open to reveal a widening set of mandibles. The eyes pleaded mercy.
Hawke would need to kill the transforming creature before it could infect him too.
Kris and Macy had problems of their own but not nearly as problematic. When the outbreak had come, they two women had already been locked in a cell like prisoners and stripped of their weapons. Nearly 3 days have passed with little food and water, no visits from any but a single guard, and the Warden had never returned from the lower levels to visit them. Word was short but they knew he was alive and fighting, the top floors had been barricaded and all gateways shut.
The two of them were without guards in a simple two bed cell with a single toilet. Needless to say, their stay thus far had been maddening. Without a guard around to watch them it was time for an escape. A single lock on their guest cell was all that barred them from the wider prison, their weapons were a floor below in a staff barracks likely emptied. Word of an infectious disease ravaging the lower levels had slammed the prison into emergency lockdown.
Thinking upon their situation, Kris was believing their band was more full of fools than she thought, first they underestimated her ability with the sword, then they just had to take this job to be guards, she was slowly believing her way to the top was gonna be harder with each day. The blonde haired swordswoman seated herself on the grimy cobblestone floor coming up with a plan, she couldn't take the conditions they were placed upon, but with Macy with her she kept a calm composure and even shot a grin her way once in a while, just to keep her cell mate's conditions high and decided to share some of her past with Macy, she didn't care if her older cellmate wanted to hear it or not.
" Macy I don't believe I've ever told you, or any of others, but my reason for being with this group, for taking up the blade it wasn't for money like the others, or to even become a squire." The little bit of light from the outside shined into the cell and beamed down on Kris." I fight each of my battles in hope to reclaim a throne that I deserve, to claim a kingdom that I should rightfully own, it is my dream that I cling to and if I am to die here, it will be a dream that I will die clinging on to, as long as I draw breath I will stick to my dream and never betray it."
Standing up I dusted off my pants before looking down on our latrine." I don't know about you, but I refuse to stay here and if you really wish to escape you will aid me in our escape." I held out a hand to the mage looking her in the eye." As much as I'd hate to admit it I don't believe I could escape on my own, now what do you say?."
Hawke picked up the sword from the ground, looking with sadness as the mysterious infection took the man. Although they didn't really know each other, he knew Wilhem was a good man, and didn't deserve to go out like this. He spoke a few words of ease to the dead man:
"... Thank you, Wilhelm. May whatever comes next be better than this fate."
With that, Hawke aims the broadsword for a quick, clean kill through the mandibles and into the brain.
Macy lay on one of the beds in their tiny cell, motionless, in the same place she had spent the last several hours. Her long hair had become matted and grisly with dirt at this point, but her composure never waned. The same stoic expression rested on her face as her eyes traced the grooves of the concrete ceiling. Even as Kris spoke, she never shifted her gaze.
Macy was fully aware of the situation. The prison was locked down, there was a deadly virus spreading, and they were unarmed. It was truly a dire situation. And yet, Macy could not help but to bask in the silence, the isolation, and this strange feeling in her gut. She listened to every word her companion spoke, but from the long silence that fell afterward, you could not tell.
Finally, after a minute or so, Macy moved her pale hands to rest calmly on her stomach. "Did you know that you can die in as little as two weeks if you do not eat at all?" Her eyes remained fixed on the ceiling as she spoke. "Two weeks... as your body starts to eat itself from the inside out. It's like a monster living inside of us that we can't control. I wonder which brain waves decide this is the proper response to lack of nutrition? I wonder what it feels like... Would it hurt? Or would your nerves simply become numb to it over time?"
Macy had always been known to say strange, nonsensical- even creepy- things. And yet, she always had sound judgement. She knew the safest place was here in this cell, but she also knew that they would need sustenance to survive. Slowly, she sat up on the bed and turned to face Kris, locking her eyes on the outstretched hand before her. Another moment passed.
Finally, after just enough amount of time for it to be awkward, Macy stood without hurry and walked over to the door, ignoring her partner's request for companionship. Rather, she approached the gate and fiddled with the lock, glancing around the room to find what may open it. She hoped her now-longtime companion would understand her dismay towards physical affection and take this action to say, I accept your offer to escape and will assist as needed.
While the others seemed to be pondering the situation at hand, perhaps stricken with concern and worry about what the future may hold, worrying about what was happening beneath them on the lower levels and if they could actually survive this situation, but Scar was completely unpertubed by it all. Scarily and unnaturally so. In fact, right now he was kicking back on one of the beds and having a snooze. This was the best thing to have happened since he joined this motley crew to be honest.
He didn't have to do shit right now, he could sleep all day and no one would care. This truly was bliss. There was only one thing that ruined this little vacation for Scar right now....And that was the loud rumbling of his stomach. That fucking asshole of a warden, Scar could live with being locked up like some animal but to at least not give them a speck of food? That drove the kitsune up the wall. Even more so than his comrades, each one a woman and each one more annoying than the last. At least, to him anyway.
Finally, his eyes flew open as he leapt to his feet. Ok, he was beyond starved and he didn't give a fuck about guards or no guards. These gals could stay here and rot for all he cared, he needed to find a sandwich or something. "Ok you stupid little bitches." With one swift kick, Scar kicked open his cell door with extreme ease. The rusted and neglected lock stood no chance against him, it wasn't even worth the effort to picklock to be perfectly honest. "I'm not sure what you three are exactly waiting for, but I'm fucking hungry and want to drive my sword through that fuckwit warden's head. You can either stay here and rot, or come along. I honestly couldn't care which you choose, just don't get in the way." Making sure his voice was loud enough for them to easily hear them, he walked over to the other two's cell and gave them a look that clearly said 'what are you two idiots doing' before pointing to the lock.
"This giving you two dunces a hard time? You're more incompetent than I thought." With an irritated shake of his head, he kicked the lock clean off. These locks were so rusted and neglected, a simple flick might've done the job to be honest. But he felt better kicking them, and gosh darn it that was all that mattered. "If you're coming, hurry up. I'm hungry and don't have all day." With an annoyed grumble, he scanned their surroundings to see where the closest doorway or stairway was. He didn't quite remember the interior of the prison to be honest, he hadn't been fucked to learn it properly. He didn't dream that he needed to break out after all.
She hadn't minded coming here to help play the part of guards with her fellow mercs when it came to this place. It was good pay, though she hadn't mentioned her rather vocal magical power to the clients in this case as a sort of "security" measure for herself. Though it was something to do, the backstabbing and being locked up was another thing altogether that left a sour taste in her mouth. She'd been stripped of her armor and her weapons and such, locked up with the others' things, though seeing the other ladies in the cell right across from hers dressed decently was a tad frustrating. Why did they get to keep their original clothes on and not herself!?
Though as Scar's familiar voice was heard as he walked over, and the other two seemed to worry about things as she listened to their conversion beforehand, a smile came to the dragon descendant's face. Ah, escape time already. She hadn't wanted to do this alone, but Scar was an ass too at times so what she would do next would be somewhat of a kick for her. Standing up in her shoddy prison rags, Diana moved over to position herself behind her own cell door.
"FUS RO DA!"
A wave of force came out as she spoke those words in the tongue of her ancestors, sending the door of her cell bursting off its hinges and slamming into the wall next to scar, inches away from his face. Nothing personal....no wait it was actually just personal, just not aimed nor meant to actually harm the guy....instead it was more to get on his nerves briefly that she could have hit him with the cell door. What was the word her parents had once used to describe this type of behavior from her? Passive-aggressive? Meh.
Though her stomach soon interrupted her thoughts with a ravenous growling. Crap, perhaps Scar was right about getting a bite to eat.
"Cmon, Scar! Keep your head in the game or you'll get hit by a cell door one day!" Diana said, getting a small chuckle out of it before walking over to Kris and Macy in the other cell, her features seeming to soften a little towards them in particular, "Hey, if there's any dreams that are gonna be made, we gotta get out of here first! Whatever's going on with those lower levels is not likely gonna help us out either, so we need to find our gear probably first."
Her hand was offered out to Kris, as if to offer a handshake or to pull her out of the cell. Though underneath Diana's attempts to be somewhat positive to her fellow mercs, there was the underlying serious nature of this that nagged at her mind.
A single flare of magic, a shining blue silhouetted the blade as it sliced without resistance down to the hilt and out the back of Wilhelms skull. Enchanted with a cutting magic it seemed it would easily dismember whatever creatures it encountered and never snag on a bone. Truly a remarkable weapon. But not the one for Hawke. No, it would serve, clearly, but the weapon he longed for was 3 stories higher in the wardens personal quarters close to where he kept his "guests" if you could call it such.
The keys to nearly every room in the building hung from Wilhelms still mutating body. It would never reanimate again but the explosive growth was already swelling his body till the confines of his clothes were stretching till they tore apart to reveal some sort of grotesque wings and other unnamable bug parts.
To get to the Office and the personal gear likely stached in his vault, Hawke needed to find the stairwell located across the upper level. Thankfully it was unguarded, but the view below was not promising. Massive glass panels showed the lower levels, the panels stretching from the outer walkway to the opposite side and all the way around. Each level had the thick enchanted glass coating the open space in the towers midsection. Far below, blurred by the overlaying glass, was darkness. Complete and foreboding.
The stairwell entrance was left ajar, and two bloated forms were already stepping through uncontested. Like wilhelm they had large abdomens and torn clothes on their bodies, a set of clicking mandibles, and the grotesque multifaceted eyes of common insects. Their hands ended in grasping talons of bloodied bone. Two infected guards.
To gain access above, he would need to slay these creatures quickly without injury and make his way topside if his sword was to be reclaimed.
Despite the commotion and the crash of the cell doors, none approached to investigate. Whoever was in charge of them seemed to well and truly have abandoned the group to fight or flee from whatever horrors awaited them down below.
The immediatw problem was supplies. Weapons, munitions, anything that could be of use. The kitchens were further below them and access was limited to a single pair of keys carried by the Warden himself or a select few of his guards. Outside the room they had been guests in was the wardens office, a thick and wide polished desk was at its center with a high backed chair behind it. Various objects littered the desk; 4 healing potions, a sharp thin bladed dagger, unfinished paperwork in a neat pile, a half eaten sandwich with questionable contents half molded and a pitcher of warm water, a massive sword rested on the wall near thw celing behind thw desk, the rest was various stamps and other needless items.
Three doors were on the left side of the office. One was the wardens luxurious sleeping quarters. The middle room was where their armor and weapons qere being kept but was locked up with multiple keys required for entrance.
The last door was a vault of some kind. Metal bars prevented access even if the door was forced apart, and the door was a thick slab of steel. Powerful magic was the only way to force your way in.. unless you knew the spell to open it.
After grabbong the keys from Wilhelm, Hawke took the sword on one hand and pulled out his Shiv in the other, in case they got too close. He didn't know what the hell infected them, but it wasn't happening to him. He charged towards the pair, and with this enchantment, he was hoping to just slice them to ribbons.
Kris almost lost her composure when her hand was brushed away and ignored, but Macy still agreed to help her making Kris smile once again."Well then I suggest we work together to break down the door once outside we'll take on." Before Kris could continue there was a loud crash outside making her lay eyes on the door and suddenly their cell was broken into and it was one of the group's members, Diana she had escaped with Scar and grabbed Kris' hand she mentioned Kris' dream before mentioning that they had to escape and grabbing Kris' hand, Kris grabbed Macy by her shirt and pulled her ahead of them before they could leave her behind.
Outside the cell they found out that there wasn't any other guards to stop them, in fact it looked almost abandoned." Hmm, whatever is going on here must be incredibly important to drag away all the floor guards, I think we may need to leave through an alternate exit, whatever is going on it must be something intense." Kris suggested before grabbing one of the potion bottles swishing it's contents around and looking at the other equipment on the table, her eyes were then drawn to the massive blade laid up against the wall she nearly chuckled at it's colossal size, It was too big to be called a great sword. Massive, thick, heavy, and looking far too rough, it was a heap of raw iron with a handle.
"Either the warden loves massive swords, or these guards have golems that can wield massive swords." Her eyes went to the doors nearby and she approached them, the one that was a thick metal vault made Kris go to it first and knock on the metal, it was solid from her knocks nothing they couldn't break through like our cell doors, Kris went to the door next to it and tried to open it, but was met with the lock." Someone check the desk for a key or keys for this door." She told the others.
Macy stepped back as the lock was kicked from the door, giving no reaction whatsoever. Not only had she gotten used to Scar's rough personality, but it never really bothered her to begin with. Any help was appreciated; she preferred not to act if she did not have to. Her eyes drifted to Kris and Diana, watching them speak before being suddenly pulled from the cell.
She went along willingly, of course, noting that most of her comrades had come to congregate in this room. They were all searching for a way out, yet not exactly working together. This was pretty common behavior between them. She, herself, had worked with them for many years yet had barely spoken to most of them. She liked to keep to herself.
Slowly, she meandered over to the desk, following Kris' lead to look at what all might be there. They needed three things that she knee for sure- a weapon for herself, the keys to any door, and a sandwich for the fox. Her gaze drifted over to the door beside the vault, where she approached and placed her hand against the cold steel. "The warden took our weapons this way..." She murmured, just loud enough for those next to her to hear.
There was no kicking that door down, but there was no unlocking it from here. "The keys were on a ring attached to his belt." She knew it was s waste of time to search the desk for keys; the warden likely still had them. Or a guard. So she moved on to find other useful items. Her eyes landed on a small dagger upon the desk. It was nothing special, but if used properly it was better than only using her hands. That is, if it was sharp.
Carefully, she moved to pick up the small weapon, tracing her finger along its edge. A small drop of blood formed on her finger from the fresh cut, and she smiled... just a bit. It's sharp... Silently, she placed the dagger in her belt, claiming the weapon as her own. Macy stuck her bleeding finger into her mouth, sucking on the small cut until the bleeding stopped. She remained completely unbothered by it as she continued her search.
It was then her eyes fell upon the sandwich. Moldy. Revolting.Yet, it couldn't have been here more than a couple of days. It would not taste delicious, but Macy saw her companion's urgency for food and believed it to be a life-or-death matter. Taste did not matter. Carefully, she grabbed the sandwich with her free hand and approached Scar. It was dripping with juices from the mystery meat, but it would sustain him long enough to escape. He could pick off the moldy bits.
With her cut finger still in her mouth, she silently held out the sandwich with her other hand, offering it to Scar without words. Once he ate, they could proceed.
Scar felt a sharp breeze blow past him before he heard the loud crash of Diana's cell door as it impacted the wall next to him. Oi, what the hell was that bitch up to? He knew better than to react, for that was what she wanted. So he simply ignored it like the incident never happened, he didn't even flinch. He did make one comment, however "Learn to aim. I was a metre to the left, you dunce." with a shake of his he walked off towards the warden's office as the rest of the group trailed behind. Ignoring them all the while.
Approaching the desk, Scar swiped a potion before picking up the unfinished paperwork. Mostly just to skim through and see if it was anything important. If it wasn't he would discard and make his way to the 1st door, the wardens' bedroom. And if it was important, he would just look to roll it up and tuck it away for later. Surely the door to the room was locked so he got ready to pick the lock. That was when Macy decided to approach him with her finger in her mouth for whatever reason, and a mouldy, revolting looking sandwich in the other, outstretched hand. He looked at the sandwich, then at her. Realising she was trying to offer the sandwich, he took a moment to seriously contemplate the matter.
Yes, he was starving. Famished really. But was he really desperate enough to eat a mouldy, half-eaten sandwich which had been sitting on the warden's desk for god knows how long?
Fuck yeah, he was.
"Thanks, Mace. Maybe you ain't as useless as Princess over there." Jabbing his thumb in the direction of Kris, and making sure he was loud enough to be heard, he took the sandwich with an added appreciatively nod before taking the sandwich. It really was a questionable, inedible looking thing but mould, for the most part, was rather harmless. It mostly just ruined the texture and a bit of taste as a consequence, he could live with that. Of course, the fact that it also meant it was swarming with bacteria was a concern, but who cares. He was hungry.
So, after picking off the mould he would proceed to munch on the sandwich while fiddling with the door. Perhaps there was something of value in here? I mean, if he couldn't unlock it he would probably just try to kick it down out of frustration.
As the others went about examining the desk and one of the other locked doors, including the cleaning off of a moldy sandwich, Diana felt a small tug of curiosity toward the door without a lock. Walking over to where scar was, she examined the door for a few seconds, wondering what would be so easily unlocked in this place....and if it had any goodies to snatch for the road ahead. Or whatever else was in this prison right now on the lower levels. Maybe if nothing else it had papers or something like a magical trinket.
"Whatever is down there its probably had to be there for a while now, or something, considering how old that sandwich looked. Anywho, imma check this room out for now and see if anything useful is there! Move, Scar!"
Shrugging mentally to herself after speaking, Diana did the first thing that came to mind for this particular endeavor. Magic power thrummed as she spoke a word, a great word of the dragon tongue that-
-would proceed to try to blow the door to pieces. Albeit, with less force than what had been used on the cell door before.
Kris held her tongue when it came to her cohort with the animal like ears atop his head, she knew that in order for them to escape she would need to have as many people as possible in order to... She noticed that Scar was about to put the moldy sandwich into his mouth and even after what he said to her earlier she considered just letting him eat the mold and make himself sick.
The moment as she opened her mouth to stop him he was already chewing on it with some of the mold picked off, she sighed shaking her head at the sight." Scar, there was a larder on the floor below us, I remember seeing it when they first brought us here." She told him glancing up at the massive blade once more." It's packed with food and if we're lucky it could still be fresh." She told the cat man.
Out of nowhere Diana decided to use her voice magic on the door to the warden's room, quickly reacting to the situation, Kris grabbed the cat man and pulled him out of the way and into her arms as fast as she could as the attack collided with the door and turn it into nothing more than splinters.
Kris sighed and let go Scar, she looked to the dragon woman giving her a more stern look."Diana be more careful where you are attacking, if I wasn't fast enough you could've hurt or killed Scar, have a bit of patients and allow him to move." Kris stared at the monster woman not breaking eye contact as she spoke with her and didn't break a sweat.
The knight then made a mental not of how Diana did her attacks and knew she might need to keep more of an eye on her." Macy since you are the only one armed could you scout to the lower floor and give us an idea of how it looks below?" Kris asked her.
The group could not hope to break open the heavily warded door seperating them from the Wardens personal arrangement of wealth. The dragonkin shout rattled the doors and splintered the wood of the opposite entrances but failed to budge the contraption. Around them, the reflected force of the shout failed to do anything but rattle the windows and send the stacked papers to scatter around the room in a flurry of fluttering litter. The heavy sword over the wardens desk fell from its positoon and fell to the floor with a loud clang as it settled.
The door itself required a word of opening. Its wards would prevent any other such intrusion and fling more dangerous spells back at the caster.
Hawke dispatched the pair of infected creatures in short order, the blade in his hand cutting through rotting flesh and bone without resistance, its enchantment giving the biting edge of the blade a supernatural cutting force. In moments he was through the door and not a moment too soon. Two floors down, more of the disgusting abominations were shambling up as they walkes on all fours, a great vibration tumbling through the sturdy building from above drawing whatever creatures remained into a frenzy to its source.
Without an option to go down his path went up to the Wardens office, Wilhelms keys opening the door with a click.
Inside the office were four people, none brandishing weapons. The massive swors Hawke had been robbed of years ago was resting on the floor behind the Wardens messy desk, its blade half covered in various scatteres pieces of parchment.
From behind, the buzzing hiss of the insect humanoids was growing louder as they scurried up the stairway.
Hawke quickly turn and locked the door behind him as much as he could. He turned back to face the new arrivals, pausing for a moment to catch his breath, and he walked past them to retrieve his sword.
"Don't really know who any of you are, don't really care. I'm taking my sword and getting the hell out of here. You lot might want to do the same."
Sheathing his weapons, Hawke grabbed the familiar hilt of the massive blade, lifting and inspecting it. It's been too long since he'd wielded Aether, and he'd almost forgotten what it felt like. He ran his palm along the flat of the blade like he was caressing it, then noticing that there was an abundance of dust covering it. Damn Warden didn't even take care of it.
After he was satisfied with his analysis, Hawke lifted the blade with his dominant arm, holding it in various positions. After a few moments, his instincts returned to him, and it was as if the huge greatsword was a rapier.
Macy was quite pleased that Scar took the sandwich. That meant they had acquired at least two of the three necessary items. Unfortunately, the most pressing one was still missing- the keys. None of them could quite go anywhere without them. At the very least, they would be needed to access their weapons. Even the dragon-woman's voice could not shatter the door - and that wasn't even the room where their weapons were. Macy gazed at Kris for a long while before nodding. The keys were not here, so downstairs would be the next place to look.
She removed her finger from her mouth and turned to walk toward the door on her new quest. Suddenly, as if their need had willed it, the door leading to the lower levels clicked open, and a hulking stranger entered. The only thing she noticed were the keys in his hand. They were the same ones they were looking for. That had been easy. The man now had a huge weapon in hand, but Macy had her sights set on the goal.
As he tested his sword, she ducked nimbly under one of his swings and grabbed the key ring. She now stood not even a foot in front of him, each of them with a hand on the keys, though she made no move to yank it from him. The stranger had done them no wrong; he simply had something they also needed. He would even be a good asset to escape.
However, Macy was not good with words, so she simply stared up at the man silently. Her demeanor was calm and confident, so she thought it likely the stranger would know she had no malicious intent. She did, briefly, glance over at Kris. I found the keys...
Scar promptly ignored the whole mum treatment from Kris. She wasn't the boss of him, so if he wanted to eat a potential deathtrap then he could at least go out in a way he would want. Eating a goddamn sandwich. Truly, there was no better way to go Scar reasoned. So he just continued fiddling around, growing more and more irritated as he realised the futility of it all. If he had his proper lockpicking gear, he would've been able to do this. For sure.
He had given up on it when Diana had sauntered on over. Oh God, she was coming this way.
You would've had to have the intelligence of a brick to stay near that door as soon as that blasted woman went anywhere near it. Her intentions were obvious and Scar wanted nothing to do with it. Scrambling away quite quickly, he felt Kris grab him and kicked out. Planting a foot on her chest, the fox man launched himself under the desk and undercover just as the room rattled. Papers fluttered about in the breeze and he flinched when the loud crash of sword could be heard. Ouch. Sensitive ears were terrible around these lot, bloody hell.
Then, just when he thought his day couldn't get any worse a new person suddenly came through one of the doors. Wonderful. Just what he needed, another nuisance. The newcomer was a man, however, a welcome change to the fact that Scar was surrounded by women, but it didn't take a genius to work out that this man was a convict here. His attire kinda gave it away. But that wasn't all that important, to be honest. He was right, getting out of here was the priority here. Finally, somewhere here was speaking some sense. He went to stand up, dusting himself off as he did.
"Once we get our weapons, we will be more than happy to get out of-" Scar stopped mid-sentence, groaning loudly as he watched Macy duck under one of his swings. Great. What was she doing this time? This was a potentially dangerous criminal and he was armed. So yes, go and enter his personal space suddenly and just stand there. I'm sure he won't care or anything. "...She's saying she wants the keys. We need them to get our own weapons." Rubbing his temples, Scar sighed. Hopefully, he wouldn't attack Macy, but Scar couldn't just trust some criminal who had somehow gotten hold of some of the keys. So he was ready to back her up in case of an attack, but honestly, without his weapons, he wasn't sure what he would be able to do against this bulky man.
Hawke at first had no idea why this young lady was trying to sneak up on him, but soon found out as he'd placed a hand on the keyring as she herself did the same. She looked like a noble, but there was something off, besides her blatant attempts to pickpocket him like a common sneakthief. Usually, nobles are all about using fancy words and deception to get what they want. This one just looked socially awkward, judging by the fact they haven't started trying to explain themselves, or even showing any false charm in the wake of being caught stealing from a man with a really big sword.
Actually, on a second look, this entire party was just odd. Another dressed like a noble, but likewise not acting out the charade. Actually looked intimidating for her short size. Then the other one dressed in rags he thought to be another prisoner at first, but they weren't wearing the correct attire. Then the last one surprisingly wasn't female as Hawke had first thought with all the others, and has ears on his head. With this much diversity, either they were all some sort of traveling band of courtesans, or...
"...She's saying she wants the keys. We need them to get our own weapons."
Mercenaries. Great. More likely than not, they wouldn't hesitate to turn on him if it meant their own benefit. On the plus side, this means they can most likely handle themselves in a fight. Here's hoping they're not just well-armed courtesans.
Hawke unhinges the keys from his belt and lets go, letting the psuedo-noble woman have them.
"Go ahead, then. Sending anyone out there without a weapon is a fate worse than death. For your sakes, I hope you know how to use them."
The door...hand't broken in the face of her amazing voice?! Drat. But at least a new guy had come through the door, that was good! Or maybe not, depending on the situation? She wasn't some idiot, even if she'd jut blasted at this door to test it out....and had teased Scar earlier with a jail door encounter of the close kind. Regardless, the man seemed to hand a set of keys he had over to Kris, perhaps the keys to this door or other ones and such? Regardless it was a good turn of events in the dragonkin's mind, meaning she didn't need to try to 'fus' her way into other doors in this room. Not that it might have turned out well based on prior results...
Though the skittering and buzzing sounds emanating from the corridor behind the new arrival did not seem to be a good sign. It was strange and ominous, and considering the sounds were greater than any normal bugs....Diana decided to do something about it.
"Er, i'm gonna see if i can board up the passage there a sec. Those sounds don't seem to be rather good, and i kinda need my armor to put back on and my weapons back just like the others."
Walking over to the entrance of the corridor, Diana made sure no one was jumping in front of her before-
"Fo Krah Diin!"
A torrent of freezing cold assaulted the corridor, whipping winds flowing down the passage and a sheet of thick ice forming to block up the corridor itself just matter of feet in front of her. After finishing, Diana turned around and looked at the others with her usual smile, walking over to where Kris stood and giving her a part on the back. Was she expecting praise? Was she just trying to assure her teammate things were maybe fine now? Whatever the case was, at least she seemed to be trying to keep positive in all these things.
The icey blockage served its purpose in freezing the doorframe tighter, though with it being magically bound it would have resisted the creatures' advances as they lacked the keys that would dismiss the protective bindings upon the frame. Asthe hostile and foreign magic spread across the metal frames of the door, 6 glyphs burned like candles as their deadly enchantments were spent.
The room shook with the force of nearly a dozen dropped conflagrations, each ward on the outside of the door where the monsters had begun to inspect the doorway was filled with biting killing flame magic enough to render every last creature (nearly a dozen in total) into unstirring ashes in a matter of seconds. Undeterred, more of the horrific creatures would be approaching soon. Attracted to the noise and vibrations through the floor.
On the inside of the office, where the glyphs still shined at the group of eacapees, the protective ice was melting swiftly. Magically being dispelled by the wards glowing around the entire room as they lit up one by one. The wardens office was the most secure room in the entire prison and it made sense that someone in his position would have a kings ransom worth of protective measures.
THUMP.. The glass windows, heavily enchanted, were struck by something heavy from the outside. Thump.. another strike, weaker this time, tested the windows. Flying on its horrific insectoid wings was a twisted and deformed corpse mutated into the likeness of a mosquito, the pink flesh and red blood of its previous life dangled on its limbs as it tried to desperately break into the room.
The creatures were outside. More buzzing and scratching was slowly echoing from the sealed and half melted doorway, its killing magic spent. The door itself has been damaged in the assault and will not stop the next wave.
Objective: Armor up and prepare to escape through the stairwell down to the central cells on floor 25. The party is currently on floor 60, Wardens office.