Advertise/Affiliate Other Forum Main Page The World Before You Play

* War's A-brewin'!

There is a civil war brewing in Connlaoth! Check out its info page here and its plotting page here!
The SotE video game is accepting crafting item submissions right here!

Also, we have a Discord chat server! Check it out. 8D

Author Topic: Gun Runners (DragonSong)  (Read 515 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #60 on: March 10, 2018, 08:40:51 PM »
Before Joshua had had a chance to check the back area, even as he was turning back to Tara, a sharp voice came from beyond the curtain.  "A'right, a'right.  No need to put your knickers in a twist."  Entering the office a slighty dressed woman came out, flipping a jacket over her shoulder.  "So love, wha's got ya shoutin' my walls down?"

Caught off guard, Joshua shifted away from the irritated healer.  Clearing his throat, and lowering the bard into a seat, he explained, "We were attacked by bandits.  My friend was stabbed.  I did what I could to stop the bleeding, but..."  The fire mage snapped his fingers, summoning sparks that quickly darted toward every candle and lamp in the room, bathing it in subtle light.  "Fire magic isn't-"

"Aye, aye, ye closed the wound but cocked up anyway."  The healer's crass language was a bit jarring, but Joshua could only nod.  "Right, well..."  They healler, who's pale blue hair reflected the light of a half-dozen flickering flames, knelt before the girl.  "Let's 'ave a look at the damage love.  Need to know what I'm workin' with."

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #61 on: March 11, 2018, 07:37:20 PM »
Tara had to resist the urge to smack the healer's hands away, and reluctantly lifted the hem of her tunic to show the wound. Just that movement was enough to send pain shooting up through her ribs and she clenched her jaw tight, screwing her eyes shut.

"Just stitch me up and I can be on my way, right?" she muttered irritably.

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #62 on: March 13, 2018, 03:44:16 PM »
"Who's the healer, you or me?" the other woman snapped, looking at the scar.  Looking at the fire mage, she mocked him.  "Next time let 'er bleed.  She'll almost be better off."  The healer did not wait for Joshua to reply.  He attention returned to Tara and she explained.  "Ya ain't bleedin' love so there ain't anything to stitch.  Trouble is yer fella, trying to save you, filled you with scar tissue."

The healer rose, hurrying over to a desk.  "I can cut out the scars and actually heal you.  But it will be a bit pricey-"

"I have no problem covering the cost," Joshua interrupted.

The healer passed the smith a knowing look.  "Ah, good on ya."  She then looked at Tara, joking, "Got yourself a catch 'ere, love.  I'd hang onto 'im."  She finally fished three things out of the desk; a sedative to knock Tara out, an obsidian scalpel to excise the wound and a paste to accelerate clotting.  Squaring with the patient, the healer held up the sedative.  "You take this, I'll take it as consent to operated."

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #63 on: March 13, 2018, 05:43:17 PM »
Tara's breath became a little ragged, and she was suddenly too panicked to pay much mind to the assumption the healer had made that she and Joshua were a couple.

"I-" She backed up a step, legs shaking, as she eyed the scalpel like it might suddenly come to life and attack on its own. "I don't want-"

Pain lanced through her side and she swallowed a cry, bending forward and pressing one hand to the wound. Her other hand gripped at her companion's arm and she turned into his body unconsciously, panting sharply.

"Fine," she spat when she could speak again, thrusting out a hand for the sedative and taking it in trembling fingers. "Just...just get this over with..."

Her indigo eyes flickered up to Joshua's face as she downed the bottle. Almost instantly her lashes began to flutter, her body growing heavy. She clutched at his arms, shivering. "Don't- don't leave me alone..."

She almost didn't realize the words had left her mouth. Damn, she hadn't meant to say that out loud. Darkness flickered at the edges of her vision and she leaned more heavily on her companion, swaying slightly.

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #64 on: March 14, 2018, 06:38:23 PM »
Joshua's arm shifted but rather than pull away, he clasped the bard's hand.  Her request had been sincere; how could he deny her this rare moment of vulnerability?  He would stay through the brief surgery...

And it was brief.  The sedative she had taken would only last about a half hour and in that time Tara was moved too a hard bench in the back.  With the practiced grace expected in her craft, the healer undid the damage the pyro had caused, removing layer after layer of scar tissue until the bard's blood flowed again.  A quick spell and a smear of paste stopped the flow out of the narrow wound.  Joshua decided to add the jar to his bill, paying with a Connlaothian gold coin.  It was more than the healer was asking but the smith did not bother haggling.

When Tara woke, she would find herself still on the bench, head on a soft pillow.  The room was dimly lit, but Joshua held onto the girl's hand.  Most of the damage repaired and with a mild numbing agent in the paste, most of the pain would likely be gone.

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #65 on: March 14, 2018, 06:54:52 PM »
Consciousness was an elusive thing, and Tara came to it foggily. The pain in her side was a dull throb rather than the aching, stabbing agony it had been before. There was a soft pressure on her hand... She squeezed lightly, instinctively, grasping at the warmth.

With a soft groan her eyes fluttered open and she found herself frowning at the ceiling. " work?" she rasped after a moment, trying to push herself up into a sitting position.

So far so good. No shooting pains. It was only once she was fully upright that she realized she was still holding Joshua's hand. She snatched her hand back as though she'd been burned and rubbed at it absently.

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #66 on: March 15, 2018, 06:02:26 PM »
Joshua did not press the issue.  She had been vulnerable, now she was not.  Instead, he filled a glass from a nearby pitcher, offering the cool water to the bard.

The smith shifted to things less urgent yet still relevant.  "So," he began.  "About Karian..."  He let the subject hang there for a time.  "What is your next move?"  He did not want to presume he would be of further use in her quest.  After all, he had been meant as her way in.

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #67 on: March 15, 2018, 08:19:57 PM »
She took the glass a little shakily and brought it to her lips, gulping a few swallows down before she risked speaking again. "I..."

Her voice wavered and her vision went fuzzy. Hazily, she realized she was tearing up. She didn't really have the energy to care. So what if Joshua saw? He'd be gone soon enough, right?

"I don't know," she whispered. Her head bowed forward and the glass shook in her hands. "I...I just don't know. I don't know what to do..." Tears started trickling down her cheeks and she let them fall.

"You should have left me there," she whispered. "This is worse. This is so much worse."

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #68 on: March 16, 2018, 06:31:43 PM »
Seeing the tears spill from her eyes, Joshua felt the urge to comfort her, to step forward to wrap his arms around her.  He would have too it he knew her a little less than he did.  Instead he reached forward, pressing two fingers against her forehead, tilting her head up.  Looking the bard in the eye, he asked, "How exactly is it 'worse'?"

Retracting his hand, the smith elaberated on his question.  "The way I see it, if I had just left you there, you'd be dead now.  Sure, you would be beyond caring but Karian would still be alive anyway.  This way, you can still chase him, find him."  Joshua took a seat beside Tara, patting her on the knee.  "That was my thinking at the time, anyway.  Or am I wrong?"

"By the way," Joshua said, deciding to broach an older topic once more.  "You called Karian a murderer.  I don't mean to pry but who did he kill?"

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #69 on: March 16, 2018, 08:37:37 PM »
Tara shook her head, more tears fighting their way free to streak down her cheeks. "I was so close, and now I- I'm just..." She choked up, her throat suddenly thick with whatever tears she'd managed to hold back.

"I'm back where I started," she whispered after a long moment. Her hands clenched into fists against her knees.

Well. Not exactly where she started. She wasn't alone.

Maybe it was that thought that spurred the words from her mouth, the thought that she wasn't alone anymore. Even if Joshua was only with her for the moment, at least he was there.

"Everyone," she rasped, shoulders curved forward and eyes fixed on her lap. "He- he killed everyone. Lana, Evergreen, Syrus, Lock...everyone. They're all dead." She dropped her head into her hands and then she was sobbing, she couldn't hold it back anymore. Maybe it was the sedative still lingering in her system, maybe it was exhaustion, maybe it was just that she hadn't let herself say their names aloud since she'd buried them. Maybe it was all of that.

Whatever it was, she couldn't stop crying. Shuddering with sobs, she turned and hid her face against Joshua's shoulder. "It's my fault," she gasped raggedly. "It's all my fault, I trusted him!"

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #70 on: March 17, 2018, 09:54:07 AM »
This time, Joshua did embrace the Bard.  She was vulnerable and the smith knew she had a right to be.  She also had a right to what comfort he could provide and he took a moment to reasure her.  "It's not your fault," he said.  "You didn't kill anyone; Karian did.  Do not suffer the punishments of another..."

Still, going after the bandit again would be difficult.  Joshua was now a known quantity and he had already proven himself unwilling to negotiate with the marauder.  He doubt he would see the man again, though an arrogant notion hoped he might; it would be interesting to watch his skin boil off.

A possibility came to him.  "I might be able to put you in touch with someone who might be able to help better than I could."  Joshua hesitated to continue.  He did not want to get her hopes up too high.  The woman he had in mind was a mercenary.  Tracking a bandit might be beyond her interest, if it turned out to be too much trouble, or the price turned out to be too high.

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #71 on: March 17, 2018, 10:32:06 AM »
She shook her head again, mumbling, "My fault, it's my fault," over and over under her breath. Her arms went around his waist and she clung to him, a part of her ashamed of the weakness, but a much larger part simply too tired to fight giving in to it.

Eventually, the sobs died down to sniffling, though she didn't raise her head. She listened as the smith spoke, offering a possibility, but she was too drained to really put much thought into it.

"I...can't think about this right now," she whispered after a moment. She seemed to almost collapse in on herself, all the life and sparking energy that was normally so present just...gone. "I- I think I need to rest."

She didn't move to let go of him though, honestly so starved for a genuine touch, a connection, that she was unwilling to give it up when she had the chance. She knew she'd regret it later, but she was too tired to really find it in herself to care.

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #72 on: March 18, 2018, 06:42:00 PM »
Joshua understood.  It had, after all, been a trying day and they were both plenty tired.  However, he had simply left his wagon in front of the shop.  "Tara," the smith whispered.  "I'm not going to leave you but I need to put up my ox.  I'm going to ask the healer about stabling him and storing my wagon, then heading to get a place to put up for an evening.  Do you want to come with me or just lay down here a moment?"

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #73 on: March 19, 2018, 09:38:05 AM »
"Okay." Tara leaned back, dragging a hand down her face. Kia, she was going to start feeling foolish in a few minutes. "I'll...stay here for now, while you're getting things sorted."

Shifting slightly, she twisted and tugged a small coin pouch out from its hiding place at the small of her back, handing it over. "Here. I'll pay for my half of the room. Just...come get me when you've got a place?"

Offline Kingfisher

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #74 on: March 20, 2018, 04:57:47 PM »
It really did not take long to get things squared away.  If anyone was bothered by Connlaothian money, they did not mention it and soon enough, Joshua returned to Tara, room and meal paid for.

Returning most of the bard's money, the smith offered a shoulder if the girl wanted support.  "If you wanted something to eat, there's some waiting.  Otherwise, I can just help you to bed..."  He willfully ignored any potential suggestion tied to his offer.

Online DragonSong

Re: Gun Runners (DragonSong)
« Reply #75 on: March 20, 2018, 08:07:20 PM »
Tara was in and out of sleep by the time Joshua returned, and more than a little groggy as he helped her stand and offered a shoulder for support.

She sort of had to smirk a bit and tease him, “Right to bed? My, aren’t you forward?” She chuckled quietly, though it quickly morphed into a groan as her side twinged painfully. No where near as bad as it could have been, but it’s pribably take another day or so before the soreness faded completely.

“Sleep sounds good,” she mumbled, the playful glint bleeding from her eyes.