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I took a break from the Guild for 6 years. I used to be with it, but then they changed what it was. Now what I'm with isn't it, and what's it seems weird and scary to me.

It'll happen to you.

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My first post is up!

Sorry I've been quiet for a while, things get in the way, you know how it is.
Einar Tværtungur Haraldsen


“You, boy! More ale!”
A thick finger thrust out towards the young boy, who froze in place, the jug shaking in his hands. Einar did not speak the Saxon tongue. Why would he? Besides, these wastrels were no good for more than menial labour. The men whom he had faced in battle some days earlier had proved that. As the rage had taken him, he remembered Englishmen turning tail and fleeing. Hardly fit to be warriors, were they?
“I said ale! Now!” he exclaimed across the field. He stood, his large frame dominating the crowd that sat around him, and shook his mug impatiently. The boy approached, the shadow of the larger man engulfing him. He poured, unsteadily, ale sloshing around the jug and spilling at his feet.
Einar’s club of a hand grasped the handle of the jug and wrenched it away from the serving boy, sending more of it splashing to the ground. With speed surprising for a man his size his wooden mug came crashing onto the boy's head, and he fell like a ragdoll to the beer-soaked ground.
“Damn you English.” with a brutish fire in his eyes he shouted down at the prostrate figure.
“Can’t fight, can’t pour ale! We should roast you along with the hogs!”
He heard a murmur of laughter from the pack of men behind him. He turned to them with a grin.
“Still, he put up more of a fight than most of them!” the men cheered raucously, mugs thudding together as they once again toasted their victory.

“So what now, Einar?” said the man to his left as he retook his seat.
“Now, we drink.” he replied, taking a heavy swig.
“I mean, what of the warband. Erik is dead, what are…”
“The man is not even cold in his grave and you ask ‘what next?’” his fiery glare silenced the man. There was a frigid silence between the two.
“I...I only mean, where will we go? Further south?” Einar fixed his gaze across the camp, filled with men and women, merry-making, but he knew the fighting was far from over.
“We go where Odin takes us, my friend. South, west, east, north, as long as there is more blood to spill and more ale to drink, it matters not.”

In truth, he did not know what the future held. The Norns had yet to make their ruling, but he suspected there would be more bloodletting to come.

Across the way, the women danced with shadows. It was a celebration, a commemoration of victory, but there was a melancholy in the way they moved. Erik had been alongside Einar when he had tasted his enemy’s blood for the first time. He was a great man, a fierce leader; he should have had a great longship carry him out into the North Sea, flames rising high for all to see, signalling his shield-brother’s ascent to Valhalla. But alas, he burned here, his ashes scattering across the mire and mingling with the blood of his soldiers.

Kjartan, his lord’s brother, had been moving among the revellers, spreading whispers of a voyage west. A number of his men had already asked Einar of his plans, if he meant to join this fool’s expedition; he already knew of Kjartan’s intentions by the time he spoke with him. Whispers snaked their way through soldiers like wine through a drunk, each rumour becoming more outlandish than the last, but the one on the warriors’ lips now was that Kjartan was to sail west, find Atlantis and pull it to the surface like Njǫrd himself.
The truth was much more mundane: sail west and find a new life.

Could he bring himself to leave? He was loyal to Erik, not Kjartan. Though the man was a formidable warrior, he hadn’t proven himself in command as his brother had. Besides, Sveinn’s invasion would continue. The King had already united Denmark and Norway, Einar was sure Englaland would fall into his empire before long. If the men in the capital fought with the same spirit as the men at Thetford had, then London’s streets would run red with the blood of Englishmen, with Sveinn sat atop a throne of its defenders, drinking mead from Æthelred’s skull.
Kjartan had paid him the insult of not asking him first. Einar had served at Erik’s side longer than any other on these shores, and he and Kjartan were shoulder-to-shoulder when they broke the English lines.
Yet he chose to hold discourse with Segrim the Exile first? Einar made no issue of it, not now at least, out of respect for Åse. Poor girl, a widow at such a young age. She would have to fight off suitors, some more literally than others.
Perhaps that was Kjartan’s true intention? To take Åse out to sea and dishonour his brother. And did he trust these other men with her? Segrim? A man who kept himself so shrouded in mystery his father’s name eluded even those he was closest to?
Or this “Fair” Gedda? A man of marrying age, perhaps he desired to take the young widow to wife himself?

No. If anything were to happen to her on her voyage he would never picture his lord and shield-brother again without shame overcoming him.

So be it. He would sail west, and crush the skulls of any who thought of standing in his lady’s way.

He rose, steadily for a man who had drunk so much:
“Come, strákar. We’re moving on.” and flanked by four men he made his way to the shimmering pyre.
Hey all, sorry it's a bit late. Here is my draft CS submission!

Checking in!

Working on a CS, should have something submitted in the next few days.
@Nightbringer

If you're still keen on this, (...)


Still keen!
Definitely interested. Thinking Berserkir or Úlfhéðnar if those sorts of things are available?
The water was still. The ripples from the length of chain had subsided, and it now hung limply in the freezing sea. Surely by now there would have been some movement? Some indication that the boy had managed to wrestle himself free of death’s hold? Fyodor had waited a minute, maybe two. In truth, he had no idea how long Taerlach’s body would be able to survive the frigid depths, but he knew it could not be much longer.

Is this what you will, Varya? he thought derisively. This boy who has given you everything that he is? Condemned to die in these frozen waters? He truly was Ravenous.
“You cold bastard.” he said aloud. “Do you see what you have wrought?”
“Captain?” came a voice from behind him. He half turned and saw a soldier approach, it was the same man who had helped him with the cannon.
“Aye, lad?”
“Is Father Taerlach…?” the young conscript’s voice trembled as he asked the question.
“I don’t know.” came the grim reply. “I’ve seen Inquisitors take bullets and not lose a step, but these waters are more murderous than any man.”
“Is there nothing we can...no way to save him?”
To the rank and file, the Inquisitors were an inspiration; a wondrous reminder of Varya’s power. They needed them, and as much as he didn’t want to admit it, he needed them. The expedition could go on without an old man at the helm of a battered freighter, but without the Inquisitors, the mission would be lost.

It was at that moment that his decision was made.

His fingers fumbled as he began to unfasten the first of the gold buttons adorning his heavy coat, and felt a hand come to his shoulder as he began to slip the sleeves off of his shoulders.
“Leave the coat, for fuck’s sake. Take the chain!” he barked as he dropped his heavy coat on the blood-soaked deck, the soldier’s hand now hanging motionless in the air. The pallid face of the young man stared back at him. “Listen to me, soldier! The chain!”
“Aye sir!” and the boy sprung into motion, grasping the length of the chain that had been tossed off the spool. There were two thuds as Fyodor’s heavy boots hit the wood. He turned, and with unfaltering eyes, roughly laid his hand on the soldier’s shoulder.
“What’s your name, son?”
“Uhh...Dima, sir.” the boy’s voice shook again as the uncertain reply left his lips.
“Dima, if I don’t come back up...you have the Kyselica.” and he jumped.


The Wastes of Muraad - some time ago

By Varya, it was damn cold. He had been cold in Magnagrad, he had been cold in Lanostre, but only here was he
damn cold. Out here in the furthest reaches of the continent, only the barest whisper of the great Varyan Aegis could be felt, yet the Muraadan had found a way to survive. The first time his father had taught him of the Muraadan, he had learned of their hardiness, but only now did he truly understand it. He and the cohort of Varyan soldiers that were posted out here spent almost every hour huddled indoors, underneath great, heavy cloaks, while the natives walked the open air with nary but simple garments.
And what were he and his men doing out here? Surviving, he supposed. He had been sent out here for his penance; it was preferable to the gallows, at least, although there were some days he might have reconsidered.

Peacekeeping was their mission, though the peace seemed perfectly able to keep itself. For the first few weeks, he barely left his chambers. He would sit at his bureau hastily scribbling letters to everyone he could think of, trying to find some way to get him out of this frigid wasteland, but the Church had made up their mind. He was to live out his days out here, away from the whirr and the hiss of Magnagrad, where he could do
”the least harm”. In its own fashion, Muraad had a kind of quiet beauty to it, quite the opposite of the hulking monolith of steel and steam that he called home.

“Captain?” a voice called from below him.
“Commander.” he corrected, listlessly. “Up here.” From the ground below, a small Muraadan woman climbed the ladder up to his listening post. Lilja was their guide out here. A survivalist and translator for the Varyan men and women in his detachment, she had quickly assimilated into their ranks, and was well liked by most.
“Sorry, Commander.” she said, pulling up a seat next to him. She pushed a warm pewter bowl into his hands. “I brought you something to eat.”
“I’m not hungry.” came the limp reply.
“Commander, you must eat. You will waste away if you don’t.” she sounded like his mother, or what he remembered of her at least.
“You mean more than I am already?” he looked down at the grey broth she had brought him. “What is this?”
“It’s virrigo...uh, stew, I suppose.” the food out here was nothing to write home about, and the uncertainty in her voice seemed to echo that idea. “It’s…disgusting, I know, but it’s…”
“It looks...uh…wonderful.” Fyodor interrupted. It was not, but it was hot, at least, and Fyodor was thankful for that. “Thank you.”

They sat in a cold silence for a moment; Fyodor took a few unenthusiastic mouthfuls before setting the half-empty bowl down on his console table. He pulled out a small wooden pipe and a leather pouch. The gantleaf wouldn’t last much longer; supply shipments were getting fewer and further between. He packed as much as he dared to spare into the bowl, and with a mechanical scrape, sparked it with a small ether-powered lighter. He took a long puff, and through the billow of white smoke, offered it to Lilja, who politely declined.
“You shouldn’t smoke that.” she scolded.
“I shouldn’t be alive, Lilja, but I am. We all have to make concessions every now and then.” he said, looking her way for the first time, a wry smile creeping at his lips. There was another silence between them.

“How do you live like this?” the blunt question cut through the air.
“What do you mean?”
“Out here, in the cold.” Fyodor hoisted himself up in his chair. “There were nights I’d shiver myself to sleep right under the Aegis in Magnagrad. Out here I can barely get any feeling in my fingers and yet you…” he sighed deeply. “You don’t even feel the cold.”
“Of course we feel the cold, Commander, but…” she too, gave a long sigh. “You’re a military man, you know all about
adapting to your situation. We just…we did the same.”
“How?”
“I don’t know how… maybe it’s something to do with our ether. But I’m hardly an expert.”
“I see Muraadan men and women go into the water. The
water! I had a friend in Magnagrad, Leonid, who fell in the water on the western shore of Varya. He went under for...it can’t have been more than a minute. Dead the next day he was. I heard his arms and legs went black as pitch, they couldn’t even process his body! This water is ten times as cold as it is down there and yet you let your children splash about in it and they come up smiling!” Lilja laughed resignedly.
“Like I said, Commander. I’m not an expert.” she picked up his bowl and stood. “Perhaps you should ask some of them.” she said with her own wry smile, before descending back down the ladder.



The water struck him harder than any icekin ever could. While he had filled his lungs before he dove into the freezing waters, the air was driven out as soon as he submerged. It took all his will not to panic; he knew if he did there would be no saving him, let alone the young Inquisitor. He paused for a moment, just beneath the surface, remembering everything he could of the lessons he had learned out in the Wastes.

Slowly, surely, his heartbeat slowed, his inner ether retreating, suppressed beyond its normal level. He held it deep in his core, focusing it as well as he could. He was no Inquisitor, that was for sure, but what control he had over the life-force within him went to simply keeping himself alive.
It was a struggle; every movement felt as if he was wading through stone. The grey shape he could see through the icy water became ever fainter as it sank deeper. With every stroke the tightness in his chest was amplified, but still he swam, until he couldn’t feel his fingers or his toes. The chill moved up his arms and his legs, threatening to devour him as the shape in the water grew closer. His good eye burned as the frigid ocean buffeted against it, but he dared not close it, lest he lose sight of his quarry.

With nary a breath to spare, Fyodor reached out an arm and wrapped it as tightly as his cold-worn muscles could around the young man’s torso, and he began his ascent.
Now came the hardest task. The Inquisitor was but a stripling, but his weight was almost insurmountable; where it had felt like stone before, now every inch of water felt like plate steel as Fyodor desperately paddled with his remaining limbs.
They must have risen only a metre; the hull of the Kyselica mocking him from across the chasm of freezing sea.

These Inquisitors and their damn vanity! he thought as he reached with his left hand to the clasp of Taerlach’s ornate, armoured gauntlets. I hope they weren’t expensive, boychek. The right one fell away, then the left, and Fyodor felt his strength return to him. He did the same with the greaves and sabatons, and they sank like boulders. Now, where the Kyselica had taunted him from afar, it greeted him warmly as it grew ever closer.
The next few moments were a blur. As the sun hit his eyes he heard cries ringing out from above him. He didn’t care to hear what they said. He felt nothing of his arms and legs but the rolled steel of the chain pressing into his palm and the pull in his arm as he was wrenched skyward.

The deck struck him, shaking him alert, and all at once the smells of blood and burning mingled in his nostrils again. He opened his mouth to give a command, but all that escaped was a withered gasp as the air forced itself back into his lungs.
“It would be best if you did not move for now, Captain.” came a familiar voice, and he felt weight and warmth covering him. When the burning in his lungs finally subsided he forced out:
“The In...quisitor...get him to...the others.”

“Aye, sir.”
Hey guys, so not sure Poly is going to pick this up again, so I guess we have three choices?

1. Let the RP die.
2. Continue on this thread and see how far we get.
3. Start a new thread, with the same idea.

I guess I'd be happy to GM but I'd be keeping it warm for Poly should they return.

Let me know what you think.

@Byrd Man@The Wyrm@MST3K 4ever@Afro Samurai@Klumsykrow357@Stitches@DinoNuts
Are people still around for this?
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