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The Whispering World

The realms where magic is the most prevalent. These are the realms of traditional fantasy but includes any setting where magic is the primary focus. Examples: LotR, Harry Potter, Dresden Files.

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The Whispering World

Post by ThreadWeaver » Wed Jun 26, 2019 3:24 am

The sun is there, and always will be, masking the stars and bursting through the clouds. It beats down at its afternoon apex, banishing the breeze with an early spring heat. Flies buzz erratically, flitting almost drunkenly between carts and mounts and the sweat of midday. Lunchtime is on its way, the hands of the clock ticking forward so the next meal may find you here, outside of the city of Axle… waiting in line.

You came here for many reasons, but one thing umbrellas them all – in one of those rare expanses of years when peace prevails, it is the spirit of exploration that has sunken its hooks into every corner of Pelageo.

Moreso than “who’s getting sacked today”, the races of Pelageo face different interests: forgotten tombs, primeval forests, skullduggerous caverns and of course the ever-present question of what lies beyond the Bramble Reef. All of the lands, in this tentative peace, shake off the crust of conflict and begin to stretch once more, pushing into new mysteries. Whether you seek to solve them – or benefit from those who would – was your choice long ago.

And, of all these lands, there is the human country of Sentrall. Centrally located on the vast continent, sharing many borders with many lands, and moderately accepting of most races, its capital city of Axle has become a hub of trade and travel, a springboard for many seeking opportunity. It is a place to call home or hostel for all manner of people. This city lies before you now. It is a massive edifice of stone and wood, built against a monolithic, mountainous spur of worn stone that almost looks as though it was thrust into or burst out of the earth at an acute angle. Its walls are old and proper, having survived many sackings and vandals, and its more prominent buildings peek over the parapets. The fabled Tower of Stars thrusts skyward in the center, very nearly brushing up against the odd monolith of stone behind the city. A new lifetime is promised behind its walls.

Now if only you could get inside the blasted place.

You set camp last night after – for some of you – weeks of travel, bedding down for the night in queue and awakening still there. It is now the afternoon again, almost a full day after your arrival, during which you were grouped together to be better processed by the guard and custom officials. The line makes progress that could be called glacial if you didn’t mind insulting glaciers. Further tents nearby belong to those who have been waiting far longer than you, made to await additional permits and oversight from the officials. And all about, as you go through another bout of standstill, you see others engaging in the business of trade; a savvy family of aquacians behind your group has opened up its cart and iceboxes and begun to prepare to sell food for the midday meal. Off to your right, totally separate from the queue for now, a caravan of deserters have prepared a bazaar – all but one of the large wagons have had their technicolor canvases pulled aside and turned to tents, plumage for their ad hoc market.
Up ahead the tried voice of a customs official calls:

“Group 83! Group 83, please present to the guard! I said 83 only, gerroff you-!”

Your group number is 86. It will be time for you to present soon. But there is time. There’s always time.

So, for the first time, you are all faced with this question:

What are you going to do?

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by khfan429 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:59 pm

A pallid eyelid slowly cracked open as the call for group 83 reached Sedgwick's ears, followed by a weary sigh from the deadman. He had been sitting cross-legged in the same spot with his eyes shut for some time, unmoving. "Drat. Lost my count." he remarked, scratching the side of his head. He then raised an eyebrow upon realizing that the bandage covering the bite mark on his head was starting to peel away, prompting another sigh. Rummaging around his supplies, he retrieved another bandage and began the process of replacing it.

"Wonder if anyone's ever died of boredom before." he mused, more to himself than anyone else. The entry process to Axle was turning out to be even more tedious than he'd heard. Perhaps he'd see about getting some lunch when the family behind them had finished setting up... not as if he needed to eat anymore, but it was something to do at least.
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by GamerScribe » Tue Jul 02, 2019 7:59 am

Amid the throng of city-goers there was a subset for whom the searing stare of the sun was a comforting embrace rather than yet another trial in their tedious trudge towards entry to Axel and counted among this number was a man only just realizing the looming threat behind him.

Aw crab guts…” He muttered under his breath as he finally took note of the family of aquacians just behind them who were moving forward with the act of prepping food for the day. He and the human he’d rode in with had just been about to set up themselves after all, and with smaller numbers it may take them more time. Springing into action the Charlander found himself fired up with the spirit of competitive business practices and hastened their cart forward into the empty space that had been created by the line moving up as he turned to face first a deadman pondering boredom, to which Romonak wondered how any person could be bored come lunchtime with the wealth of options the world outside the Charlands seemed to offer, and then to his associate Morgan.

We need something quick to prepare and good in the heat!” He posited to his partner, though given they’d been at this much longer than he had they no doubt had an idea already.
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by wadjet » Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:08 pm

Rose wasn’t surprised to find the people all around her keeping as wide a berth as possible. Even without any visible decay, the various herbs tucked in on her person, their scent strong enough to overwhelm any other odors, were a clear indication to others that she was a deadman. Of course, all of these herbs had practical use too, not that she expected anyone here to understand all their uses. For example, the one tucked under her belt on her right hip could be brewed into a drink that helped a common aquacian illness. Little known, as the plant only grew in arid environments.

After another suspicious look from a guard patrolling the queue, she turned her attention towards the others in her group. Almost midday, and already an assortment of food met her gaze. Considering the diversity of offerings, it was likely that there would be something for all the non-deadman to enjoy. One dish in particular, coming from a human caravan a little way aways, seemed to spark some long lost sense memory. Nothing big, just a sense of safety and of home, tinged with a hint of nostalgia of some kind…

Ugh. All this waiting was making her antsy, so finally Rose pulled a deck of playing cards from her belongings, shuffling them to give her hands something to do. At least the wait was almost over…
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by Śaraṯkṣati » Sat Jul 06, 2019 9:49 pm

Violet didn’t care for hot days.

After all, heat and dead flesh didn’t exactly mix. Whenever Violet found her travels taking her through warmer climes, she always had to be a little more liberal in her application of perfumes—much to the malaise, no doubt, of anybody within smelling distance of those perfumes. Sure enough, from beneath the wide, low brim of her hat, she caught a furtive glance from a passing guard—first puzzled, as if he couldn’t quite figure out where the overwhelming aroma of citrus was coming from, and then disapproving once realization struck. Maybe he’d cottoned on to just what she was, or maybe he thought she was merely some strange foreigner from a land where people couldn’t smell anything short of disorienting. In any case, he walked on by.

She looked down to the ground so that the brim of her hat fell low over her face, veiled her sallow skin and cracked dead lips just as her gloves concealed the deathly grey of her hands. It was as close as she could get to passing for alive—close enough that from a distance or at a glance, one might be forgiven for thinking her a traveler with an aversion to eye contact. But curiosity won out—the desire to see, to take it all in, this strange and wonderful new place—and she looked up again.

The Tower of Stars loomed over her like a bridge to the heavens themselves, enshrined within walls that had weathered centuries of hardship. She’d seen Axle depicted in art before, had heard fellow nomads huddled around tavern tables talk of it during her sojourns through the lands of the Aquacians, had watched merchants selling its wares in the Grand Bazaar of Al’Grasili. But hearing about it, seeing bits and pieces of it—to a born wanderer, it was like offering drops of water from a precious oasis. She needed to experience it herself. She needed to be in there.

“Group 83!” she heard the customs official call from up ahead. 83—three more groups and she’d be… Well, not in the city, but closer to it. She unslung her lute, and began to pluck away a few idle notes as she waited. Each note came infused with just a hint of a Whisper—breathed a sense of ease and peace into the world around it before it faded off into silence.

She wasn’t the only impatient traveler suffering through a hot day, after all.

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by MiseryGk » Sun Jul 07, 2019 3:06 pm

Brighteyes set her flower pot on the ground at her feet and threw her arms up to the sky in a big stretch, letting out the tiniest grunt as she did so. "Not too much longer I hope!" She said to anyone and no one.

As she picked up the orchid she took note of some of her other group members, seemingly trying to keep to themselves, and decided to let them do that, preferring not to be a bother. She then turned her attention to the food carts being set up. Cooking food would be a very welcome smell to break up the overwhelming scents coming from around here.

Being somewhat more familiar with Aquacian food she sets her sights on that cart, but then curiosity creeps up as two of the others in her assigned group set up their own cart. She had talked to the odd pair when they got grouped up but wasn't entirely sure what to expect from their little business. Why not have a look!

"Hello Mr.Romonak, Hello Mr.Morgan. What have you got here?" She leans toward the cart, ears perked up and facing forward.

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by Pad_Mayhart » Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:23 am

Morgan traced a strip on his wall that held a small assortment of different knives, before selecting his Chef's Knife. He set the blade on his cutting board, before moving over to his assortments of food. He heard a small voice from behind him, peering over his shoulder to get a glance of her he flashed his crooked smile. "Ah, Miss Brighteyes! How are you today?" He turned his back to the cart's window as he began to prepare, the sound of his knife cutting through his various ingredients, as he set several of them aside in small bowls, then wiped his knife on a rag before setting it on the cutting board.

He reached into a high cabinet and pulled out several dishes, then shuffled to a drawer and pulled out utensils. When all was said and done, he turned to the window and set down plates in front of the Hedonian. "Well, my dear. Today I thought a bit of cool fruit sounded nice. Here, we have a simple fruit combination," He said gesturing to a simple fruit salad. "Here, we have a nice strawberry compote atop a simple cake, with a dollop of cream that I have whipped by hand, trust me it is very delicious." He then gestures to the last of his plates, "This one is a creation all my own. It takes some time and particular encouragement, but in my experience it is a lovely treat." On the last plate is a slightly thick, oblong rectangle that seems to hold together well. Inside of it are small bits of fruit held in place and from one end comes a small stick.

"Would you like to try any of them? On the house, of course."
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by MiseryGk » Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:36 am

Brighteyes looks over her options, her eyes practically glittering with excitement. She slowly reaches out to pick something. Letting curiosity guide her she settles on the last treat presented to her. She picks it up by the little stick poking out and gives it a sniff. "It's pretty... and so cold!"

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by ThreadWeaver » Fri Jul 12, 2019 11:54 am

Time passed idly, flies gathering as the food cart kicked into gear, offering a stark accompaniment to the hum of Violet's lute. They settled briefly, buzzing by the deadmen in the party, drawing closer and closer until -

Thump tump thmp tmptmp...

A round, stitched leather ball, about big enough to hold in one hand, bounced and rolled into the center of the group. It hit Rose's deck of cards, toppling them. A young boy, aquacian with combed-back hair and ear fins that were too big for his head, followed after it from the family behind them. He stumbled into their midst, pushing past Sedgwick before the deadman's unique odor caught up with him. He stopped immediately, nose wrinkling, and spun a circle to take in his new surroundings.

"Uh..." he managed, wide eyes glancing to his ball as he took a small step towards it, his ear fins twitching uncertainly.

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by GamerScribe » Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:35 am

Stepping out from beside the cart, as Morgan clearly has things well at hand for the moment, Romonak sidles forward and swoops low to take hold of the ball that had decimated the deadwoman's deck of cards and crashed into the midst of their group.

"Good hussle, but I hope that was a case of bad aim." With a reassuring smile he crouches and begins to clean up the mess the boy caused. He starts to play by the uneducated's rules for the game of 52 pick up.

"Now then; why don't you and I help tidy this up for the nice lady, then you can take your ball back and play?"
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by Pad_Mayhart » Sat Jul 27, 2019 12:07 pm

Morgan snapped his finger with a sparkle of ice and whimsy, giving Brighteyes a flashy wink. "Thanks! I worked hard on the recipe and if I say so myself, it's a pretty spectacular event." Morgan leans over upon the counter-top and talks, "So, how do you like it?"
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by MiseryGk » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:32 am

The rabbit-like girl nibbles at the icy treat. "It's good! I think it's great for this hot, sunny day. I might need something else to eat though, doesn't seem like the most filling thing but, I like it, thank you!" She bounces from side to side slightly as she enjoys her snack.

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by ThreadWeaver » Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:36 am

The aquacian boy stared at Romonak, eyes fixating on the hostage orb. He took a few steps over, reaching out for it with one hand and pointing.

"...aaaaaaAh!" He said, gills flaring with a bright pink as he expelled the exclamation. He stepped on the cards, which clung to his feet. He peeled them off then, glancing between the card and what to him must be some sort of ball burglar, seemed to put something together. He presented the card to Romonak, and reached for the ball again.

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by GamerScribe » Thu Aug 08, 2019 1:10 am

As the child started to holler the Charlander couldn't help but find himself stymied by the sudden outburst. For a moment he considered other options such as yelling back at the child, scolding their behavior or putting on an elaborate show of charades to try and get them to understand...

But honestly that all would have been more trouble than it was worth. Especially seeing as the youth didn't seem to get it... If he yelled at or tried to scold the child the parents might get involved, and trying to give a kid a lesson in responsibility was all well and good, but at that young age they didn't need a lesson in how silly their parents looked when knocked out cold.

Thankfully the child seemed to show some passing semblance of recognition and presented a card to Romonak who in turn sighed and nodded; issuing forth the ball with one hand while reaching for the card with the other.

"There you are, kid. All settled." He said simply before turning to face the individual whose deck of cards had been scattered.

"Uh... I'll help pick those up."
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by Pad_Mayhart » Thu Aug 08, 2019 11:24 am

Morgan watches the the bunny girl enjoys the treat. He felt a twang of pride that his treat was so well received, it made the labor involved to bring the concoction to life worth it to know someone else enjoyed it as much as he did. When she mentioned eating more, he perked up.

"Maybe I can cut you a deal... Since my normal call-boy seems a bit occupied," he looked over her shoulder to the Charlander dealing with a kid. "I can whip you up something good, if you wanna spread the word about my cart a bit."
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Re: The Whispering World

Post by MiseryGk » Fri Aug 09, 2019 4:46 pm

Brighteyes' ears face towards Morgan as he speaks, proving her attention as she otherwise seems preoccupied with the food. Once he's finished she stops her swaying and takes a step back to get a better look at the cart.

"Morgan's Morsels, huh? Sure! That could be fun.. Oh! Do you have any fliers or something I could hand out? Or are you guys working with more of a 'word of mouth' kinda thing?"

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by ThreadWeaver » Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:44 am

Romonak would feel a slight, giving pressure against his back, and then into his stomach and chest and arms as the ball was thrust back into his grasp. The aquacian boy was there, holding out another card. He looked at Romonak, center mass, with a dull expectation, his long black hair swaying idly as he rocked ambiently from foot to foot.

Now that he had more than a passing, scrambled instant, Romonak had the opportunity to sense that there was something about the boy that was off. Not in a way that was threatening but in a way that lent to a sense of alien un-ease. Something about how the boy was looking at and also through and slightly behind Romonak, like he couldn't quite parse him. His eyes bore an abject sense of distraction, as though his vision were shifted a few degrees in a direction Romonak wasn't able to fathom, and they were viewing the world through the same kaleidoscope at different angles.

As he considered this, the child patiently holding out the card, two calls issued out:

First, with all the droll clarity of someone stuck doing a job for insufficient wage but lacking the willfulness not to do it in the first place:

"Group 84! Group 84, please present yourselves and remember to declare all weapons for inspection!"

And secondly, from behind them:

"Mar? Maruniti? Mar, where have you gotten to? Come to your mother, Mar!"

That second call issued with a rising tied of urgency, new waves reaching in with every added word.

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Re: The Whispering World

Post by GamerScribe » Thu Aug 15, 2019 12:37 am

Having turned 'round and been confronted with the ball once more the Charlander had to take a second to ponder the scene before himself. The child he'd traded seemed to be trading him back and seeking to trade again. For a moment there was relief. Maybe they could make a game of it and he could get the kid help clean up the mess he'd made after all. But the way the child stared uncertainly on was tough to get past. Maybe he should...

The dual voices ringing out over the crowd cut through to Romonak with clarity and purpose and made him instantly aware of two things. One; he needed to help Morgan move the cart. Two; this child was... probably... 'Mar'. Relief and the pressure of time commingled; 84 had been called... they were 86. Still a bit of time to go before they needed to be at the front. He could stall for a brief few moments and then just double-down on getting the cart moved.

"I don't know their name, but there's a child over here who seems a bit lost." Romonak said, waving one hand up in the air for just a second before he gave 'maybe-mar' a nod and traded the ball for the new card.
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