A Thorne In The Lion’s Paw.
Loredas, 14th day of Heartfire, 2E 583.
The Soul Cairn, 4.34am.
Ava Blackthorne & Marissa Blackthorne, The Soul Cairn.
” Well that was certainly worth the trouble, wasn’t it ? ” The Keerilth chuckled to herself, as she continued collecting soul gems from the fallen bonemen, who were now nothing more than tiny piles of black soul ashes laying on the ground. ” You think we have enough Marissa, or should we sweep for a few more ? “
Marissa looked up, before turning her attention back to filling her travel back with the soul gems. ” This should be enough, but always better to be safe. Besides with Father’s coronation being tomorrow, we don’t have much time, we need to start wrapping this up. ” She spoke, as she quicken her pace.
While The Soul Cairn is primarily inhabited by the souls of those unfortunate enough to be soul trapped then killed, it has long been a place of interest for the Keerilth vampire clan. With them often taking time to explore it’s vast realm, searching for both soul gems, and any other secrets it might hold. They were never foolish enough to consider making deals with The Ideal Masters, knowing that would mostly likely bound them to The Soul Cairn, and keep their souls from reaching Coldharbour upon their deaths. They did however find a strange sense of peace while inside The Soul Cairn, in a lot of ways it was very much like Coldharbour, but still not enough for them to be foolish enough to make a deal with The Ideal Masters. They more so saw it as a place of sanctuary, as a place to harvest important resources such as soul gems, and rare alchemical ingredients for alchemy, that could be found inside of the realm of The Soul Cairn.
With the coronation of their father Lycidas Blackthorne to the position of the mayor of Southpoint taking place soon, the Keerilth clan was hard at work preparing themselves for the coming change in their lives, but also in preparation, should other vampire clans native to Valenwood try dislodging them. The threat of attack from outside of Valenwood was unlikely, but not impossible, the Keerilth had no shortage of rivals. Ranging from The Cyrodiil Vampyrum Order, the Bonsamu, The Whet-Fang, all the way to the self proclaimed, ” pure bloods ” known as Lamae’s bloodline of vampires. The Keerilth had not bothered to form alliances with the other factions of vampires scattered throughout Cyrodiil, seeing them as inferior, or simply too stupid to bother with. Through out the years the clan had been preparing for an assault on their home, both in Southpoint, and their lair known as The Eternal Abyss. Located deep in the forest’s of Greenshade, just west out Southpoint, this is where the clan maintained it’s primary stronghold in the province of Valenwood.
Previously Mayor Aulus has served as the mayor of Southpoint, until His mind was twisted by Sheogorath and forced into turning Southpoint into a cesspool of madness. House Blackthorne took advantage of this situation, by publicly denouncing him as an incapable leader and vied for ownership over Southpoint. Due to it’s ruling not governed by birthright, but rather a more democratic approach, House Blackthorne was given the chance to prove themselves capable and decent rulers of the port. It took some time, but with the backing of House Shadyhollow, as well as the support from House Velvntia they eventually earned the majority vote, leading to Lycidas Blackthorne being selected by the citizens of Southpoint to claim the position as the brand new Mayor of Southpoint. House Blackthorne had earned the respect of the citizens of Southpoint, by helping stop the former Mayor Aulus, and restoring the city to it’s former glory. Many lives were saved due to the actions of the Keerilth clan, particularly House Blackthorne, as well as House Shadyhollow, who had had saved the city from certain madness at the hands of corrupted mayor. The battle that took place during this time left most of Southpoint in complete ruins, and resulted in the death of many of Southpoint’s inhabitants to be killed, including several members of the Keerilth clan itself. It was the actions of House Blackthorne during this time of chaos that lead to many in Southpoint as seeing the Blackthorne’s as trustworthy leaders in the community. This was not the only contributing factor to their rise to power, the success of their family business, their ability to transport goods, all the way to their vast wealth all contributed to this recent accession.
Ava stood up, taking a moment to brush off her clothes, before turning towards Marissa. ” Let’s get going, tomorrow is going to be a long day. ” Together the two began walking back towards the way they had came, they were no strangers to The Soul Cairn, having been here countless times before today.
” These spell tomes should prove to be interesting, just goes to show you never know what you are going to find around here. ” Marissa commented, as she pulled out the tome to conjure a Wrathman. ” Always nice to find something unique, and we have more than enough soul gems, more than worth the effort “
” Tomorrow will also prove to have been worth of the effort, finally we can start shaping Southpoint as we see fit. “
Marissa felt satisfied for the first time in a long time, looking forward towards the future of Southpoint. While their new position would make somethings more difficult, with feeding being the utmost concern for the coven, they already had plans in place for the coming change. For all of their evil deeds over the years they had never once taken an innocent life inside of Southpoint to satisfy their need to feed, instead they relied on alternative measures of obtaining fresh blood. The clan much preferred to feast on the blood of those who threatened the security of Southpoint, from cut throats, bandits, even that of rival clans. During The Alliance War they even went as far as to feed on fallen Ebon Heart Pact soldiers who they had defeated in battle, but never did they once attack those from The Daggerfall Covenant, knowing that should they be defeated by either The Aldmeri Dominion, or The Ebon Heart Pack that it could potentially be the end of the High Rock as they knew it. As much as they called Valenwood their home they had never given up hopes of returning to High Rock to reclaim what they had abandoned so long ago, this was just the beginning of a much greater vision, a vision of reclaiming what was theirs, a vision of their ascension.
” Looks like they don’t want us to leave, well let’s try not to disappoint them now ! ” Marissa laughed, as a couple of Bonemen began charging towards them from each side, their weapons at the ready. The Keerilth sorceress responded by lashing out towards the closest Boneman with a vicious bolt of lightning.
Ava smirked as she watched bones go flying into the air as a result of Marissa’s lightning bolt, she unsheathed her sword, slashing as the nearest Boneman with her Blackthorne Blade. Her strikes quickly found their mark, within a matter of seconds the Boneman was nothing more than a scattered pile of bones. With two more quickly closing in she raised her free hand into a position to where she could freely cast spells, before casting a dark orb towards the ground in front of her. The orb had an area of effect, one that stunned both of the Bonemen, severally slowing them both down for just a couple of moments.
” Take this ! ” Marissa shouted, as she began to cast a series of dark orbs herself, striking the Bonemen directly from behind as Ava attacked with a spell known as dark flames, engulfing the Bonemen in black fire as they collapsed to the ground, before turning into piles of black soul ashes on the ground around them.
” Pathetic little things aren’t they ? ” Ava smirked once again, as she knelt down to quickly collect more of the soul gems from the black soul ashes. Marissa did the same, it didn’t take long before the two sisters where back on their way, walking towards the portal connecting to a chamber within The Eternal Abyss.
Marissa walked in front of Ava as the two approached the portal, before stopping, then turning to face her sister. ” See you on the other side, try not to dally ! ” She chuckled as she walked through the portal, and within a matter of moments stepped out on the other side, setting foot back inside of Valenwood.
Ava shook her head with a large smile on her face before stepping through, only to bump directly into Marissa as she emerged on the other side of the portal. ” Speaking of dallying. Come on shake a leg, move it, we don’t have all day, your words, not mine ! ” She spoke teasingly, as she gently pushed passed Marissa.
” Let’s drop these off, then we can return to Southpoint, there are a few things there I want to ensure are taken care of before tomorrow. “
- This topic was modified 10 months, 4 weeks ago by Ava Blackthorne.
Turdas, 12th day of Hearthfire, 2E 583.
They were gathered around the table, each reading through the parchment Taure had handed out. Viceroy Ellandil, Allara and Ayrenn were the three with him in the Council Chamber of the Alinor Palace. “Well this changes things.” Ellandil spoke, glancing over the correspondence. The Altmer nodded, looking over to Ayrenn expectantly.
“Four crucial individuals, and indication they intend on a slaughter of the Pact citizens in Bruma.” Taure rolled his shoulders, passing the Queen another piece of parchment, “Adeline Precatorius, a prevalent member of the Heritance, whom we’ve been watching for months now,” The Altmer leaned back in his seat, running a hand through his hair, “Reports have them all meeting in several days’ time in Bruma.”
“And this can be trusted? Who’s your source?” Allara interjected, giving a doubtful look to the Altmer.
“Evangeline Pentaghast,” Allara scoffed, shaking her head, “She’s tailing Precatorius, has been for weeks now; and she’s been keeping me updated on the situation through this.” Taure pulled a small crystal ball from his pack, briefly showing it to Allara and the others before returning it. “She’s reliable,” He looked to Ayrenn, “You know that much.”
Ayrenn nodded, but sighed depressingly regardless, “And the others? Fillus Acquillirios? Varo? Minorman?”
“Arctus Varo is with Precatorius,” Taure informed, “They met South of Cheydinhal, we think they’ll be meeting with Acquillirios in Cheydinhal within a couple days.”
Ellandil tutted, “We can’t act on assumptions Tavari, we need confirmation before we can make a move to capture them in Bruma.” Taure gave a disheartened look, and his concerns were voiced by Allara.
“Capture?” She exclaimed, “The situation has changed Ellandil. We cannot risk to lose any of them; and waiting will only chance their loss.” She turned to Ayrenn, “We need to strike whilst we already know where they are, not by waiting for where we believe they may head.”
Ayrenn didn’t want to make that decision herself, but she supposed she was forced to, “What of the fourth target?” She turned to Taure, “What about Minorman?”
“Already in Bruma.” He looked over to Allara, “He’s a safe-house in the City, it’s where we imagine the group will meet.”
“Have we eyes in the city?” Ayrenn questioned, looking hopefully to her advisor.
Taure’s expression was strained, “Yes… but,” She looked expectantly at him, “We can’t get close without raising suspicion. We’d be putting our agent at risk, especially since the Heritance already expect us to be watching them.”
“It’s an unnecessary risk. We wait for the other three to arrive, then we can initiate the arrest.” Ellandil suggested, though he was shot down by Allara once more.
“And if the intelligence is wrong?” She glanced at Taure, “If they split, and we lose them?” She turned to Ayrenn, “We need to strike now while we still know their positions. We cannot afford to lose this chance.”
“There’s no way we can sanction that Allara.” Ellandil spoke, “Regardless of their inclination, these are four Imperial citizens, residing within Cyrodiil – Empire territory. If we attack them it could be seen as an assault on the Empire, a breach of the treaty. We need to do this quietly and without casualties. An arrest can be explained and negotiated if things go southward, murder cannot.” He turned to Ayrenn, “This would cause all kinds of problems for us, we’d only be doing the Heritance a favour by attacking.”
Allara’s expression darkened, as she looked at Taure, “This is a military operation, it is no place for a pacifist.” She gestured her arm at Ellandil as she spoke, though Taure ignored her comment.
Ayrenn once more looked to Taure, advocate of the middle ground, for help, “Your advice, Taure?”
The mer’s expression was disconcerting, to say the least, “Well,” He rubbed his eyebrow, “The intelligence I cannot fault. We can be fairly positive they will meet in Bruma…” He looked at Allara, “But Allara’s concerns cannot be dismissed. We cannot be utterly certain, and so we do risk losing this opportunity.”
Ayrenn’s troubles were hardly abated by this, “Technically,” Taure continued, “We have full legal sanction to carry out an attack .” He drummed his fingers on the table, “We could have a force in both Cheydinhal and Bruma ready to operate within a couple days.” He paused, taking a deep breath, “Politically, this could release all hell. Even if we explain the situation to the Empire afterwards, that Precatorius and the others are a part of a terrorist organisation; the fact that we acted on foreign soil without their permission or their awareness… that could devastate our relations with the Empire. It wouldn’t directly breach the treaty, but it may incite them to make changes to the accord.”
Taure sighed, looking down at the parchment in front of him, as Ellandil spoke, “Which is why we can’t risk it – especially given the prior events due to outside intervention into Empire matters. This started out as a capture mission, and I came here to discuss the best method that we could use to bring these targets in to stand for trial.”
“Can we not appeal to the Council?” Ayrenn spoke, addressing both Taure and Allara, “If we could receive their permission-“
“There’s no time.” Allara interrupted, “By the time the request has been filed, and we have a response, they’ll be long gone. Keeping track of four targets on foreign soil is too difficult and costly for us to do that. And each day wasted puts our agents at further risk.”
Ayrenn rubbed her forehead, glancing at Taure once again, though to no avail. This was her decision after all. “I… cannot sanction an attack. Given the circumstances, we shall wait for an opportune moment for a quiet capture.” Allara scoffed, shaking her head in dismay.
Her glare was deathly, “And if the capture fails? If they manage to escape us, they’ll slaughter dozens, maybe more. Not only our agents are at risk, but there are many innocents’ lives at stake here as well.”
“Have we no other options?” Ayrenn requested, hoping for everyone’s sake there was one.
“None.” Taure sighed, “Not within a suitable timeframe.”
The Queen nodded, already anticipating that answer. “Then that is my final decision.” She glanced down briefly, “Pray it is the right one.”
Allara was irate, to say the least, as she began gathering together her correspondence; “There Is one other matter,” Ellandil’s interruption had her pause. “Southpoint has come under new leadership.”
Taure hummed, “Yes. The Blackthorne family. I’m well acquainted with some of them.” Ayrenn’s brows raised.
“The Blackthornes?” She looked to Taure, “The same-“
“Yes.” He nodded, glancing at her only briefly, “They’re the same ones. However, Lycidas Blackthorne, the leader of their house, has proven himself to the locals quite apparently – though there’s rumour people were ‘persuaded’ to favour him. He’s been appointed rule of the port town.”
Ayrenn hummed, “Does it concern us?”
“Barely. House Blackthorne has an illegal trade route along the western border of Valenwood, and their presence is seeping into the other parts of the province, as well as trade expansion into Elsweyr.” He paused, “They’re hardly a threat, but they have the potential to be causing us problems. Very minor problems.”
“More importantly,” Ellandil interjected, “There’s a Bosmeri town being run by Bretons. This doesn’t go smoothly with most of the outlying regions, and if we want to avoid conflict, we’re going to have to deal with it.”
Ayrenn was confused, “This is hardly our sphere. We’d only be seen as interfering.”
Ellandil hummed doubtfully, “Well, at the moment, perhaps… but it’s best to nip it in the bud.” Ayrenn shook her head, frowning. Ellandil was just exercising caution regarding foreign politics, now his stance had altered noticeably.
“No. Focus on the Veiled Heritance, this Southpoint situation is trivial.” Ellandil bowed, as did Allara, and the two departed. Taure remained as usual. “Thank you, as always, Taure.”
And, as always, Taure feigned confusion, “For what?” Ayrenn forced herself to smile slightly.
“For your help.” He hummed in mock enlightenment. “How is Evangeline?”
He held a hollow expression, looking the Queen in the eyes for a moment before smiling slightly, “She wants a raise.” Ayrenn forced a smile too, shaking her head. “Again.” The Queen relented, nodding. The Imperial deserved it, for how many times she was put into the fray.
“Care for a holiday?” Taure’s brows raised.
“I didn’t become immortal to take holidays, I did it to get things done. Besides, I don’t think now’s the best time.”
Her expression was stern, “You look deathly Taure, and you’ve done well enough with this entire situation. Evangeline can contact me directly, but you need to spend some time away.” She looked him directly in the eyes, “I hear Southern Valenwood is nice around now.”
Taure looked to her surprisedly, “I thought it was trivial.”
Ayrenn merely shrugged. “It is. You’re on holiday, just popping in to show your respect and congratulate them. Then when you come back, you can tell me about your break.”
Taure hummed, one eyebrow skewed. “How unlike you.” But he relented, “Ok. I’ll take a few days off. But I will be back to oversee the capture. You’ll keep me informed if the situation changes.”
“Naturally.” The Altmer sighed, nodding his head.
“Alright then.” He gathered up his things, before making to leave. It’d be a hectic few days, and hopefully all would go to plan.
Fredas, 13th day of Hearthfire, 2E 583.
West Coast of Summerset.
Taure stood at the tree line, once more looking out over the all too familiar sight. He would look out at the horizon of the Abecean before he departed from the Isles, every time; it was his homage to Ysolde… somewhat – to see what he had promised to show her, but always had more important things to do. The Altmer sighed, turning away from the rising Sun, only to pause in his tracks, startled by Ayrenn’s presence in the wood behind him. She smiled, glancing past him at the dawning Sun, before looking him in the eye.
“Your ship will leave soon.” The Queen glanced around the thick woodland, “The forests are beautiful in Hearthfire.” She commented. The reds, golds and other autumnal hues melded together in a stunning backdrop; one of the defining aspects of Summerset. Taure hummed his response, walking towards Ayrenn, drawing her attention back to him once more. “Why do you come here Taure?” She thought it a imprudent question, but her curiosity was the overshadowing encouragement.
The Altmer tilted his head, sighing slightly, “When she returns, I’d like you to grant Evangeline an honourable discharge.” He avoided her other question, but his answer told her enough as it was. She knew Ysolde, and she was aware of how Taure saw Evangeline, even if he denied to himself her role in his life. Ayrenn nodded.
“Of course.” Evangeline may not be pleased by it, but it would grant Taure peace of mind, and she would be safe at least. The Altmer smiled at his Queen, bowing his head in thanks, and walked past her. “Taure,” She called after him, “Keep your head, keep your virtue. Fill the unforgiving minute.” The Altmer smiled at his old adage.
“Yes, My Lady.” He bowed, before departing from Ayrenn’s presence.
Sundas, 15th day of Hearthfire, 2E 583.
The three ships were visible from quite a distance, as they slowly approached the shores of Valenwood. Two brigantines either side of a large galleon, escorting the impressive vessel down the coast in a seemingly purposeful display. Each of the ships flew an identical flag of red, blue and gold; at its centre standing a prideful crowned lion – the flag of House Montclair.
They were clearly too large to all dock at the port, though that was known before they set sail, and so eventually the pair of brigantines trailed behind, and anchored a small distance from the docks. The galleon, however, proceeded to approach the coast, lining itself up and eventually stopping beside the wooden dock. Several large ropes were tossed from the ship down towards the dockhands, to be tied down. From the ship descended a large dock ramp, at its head standing two prevalent individuals.
Amelie Montclair. Her hair was in a tightly braided bun, unaffected by the breeze; though her extravagant dress, a dark purple with golden embroidery, flapped slightly in the wind. The attire was… intentional, to say the least, and certainly was a striking image. The Breton looked past her nose at the town of Southpoint, her head raised slightly.
The second was Annalise Montclair – oft known as ‘the other one’, though the name was never used in front of her, lest your tongue be pulled out. Her loose, slightly bedraggled, short hair whipped about in the breeze; giving her the sort of battle-hardened, uncaring warrior look she typically went for. The Breton stood wide-stanced, donning her usual armour, a mix of silver plate for the leggings and gauntlets, chainmail to protect her torso and a leather corset over that. Her left hand rested comfortably on the pommel of her hilted sword, whilst her other brushed – albeit pointlessly – a lock of hair from her eyes. “For fuck’s sake.” She spat, drawing out Priscilla, and cutting off the small lock of hair. Amelie chuckled, glancing at her sister, before looking behind them at the last figure finally making his way to the edge of the ship.
“Why am I even here?” He whined, pouting at the sisters. Rohlbert Montclair. Cousin to Lleraya Montclair, great-granddaughter of Amelie. He was the unorthodox Montclair. Rogueish, joyful, devilishly hands-
Annalise smacked him over the head, “Get over yourself.” He glared at the vampire, “Not even Amelie can pull such a ‘cocky-and-full-of-herself’ expression as that.”
“Oh please,” Amelie scoffed amusedly, straightening her back, grinning pretentiously, and lifting her head even higher, and trying to look down upon Annalise “Who do you think he’s learning from?”
The eldest Breton just raised an unimpressed eyebrow.
Amelie tutted, returning to her normal posture, which… really didn’t change much at all; and gesturing towards the town before them. “Well, time to make our appearance.”
“You know,” Rohlbert started, but quietened down when he saw their expressions, like mothers scolding a child, “I could just stay on the ship.” He mumbled. They of course heard, as Annalise’s hand reached back to grab his top and drag him in front of her.
“Down you go.”
Rohlbert just sighed, slumping his shoulders, as he descended the steps.
“We practiced this,” Amelie scolded yet again, “Back straight, head up, and smile. We all know how you like to make the ladies swoon.” She muttered the last part quietly, but it was enough to encourage him. Safe to say his pearly teeth were on perfect display for all the young women and womer of Southpoint to see. Most were disappointingly uninterested… though that may have been for fear of the two imposing figures walking close behind him. Though Amelie walked with grace, vastly different to Annalise’s almost-march, both still commanded an air of authority… and danger. Behind them marched a host of about twenty soldiers, each donned in silver plate, in two long columns. They were given wide berth, and Rohlbert had to suffer the occasional distant giggle or whisper from the local girls.
None really caught his eye… yes, he definitely had an eye out; well, none until-
“Who’s that?” The young Breton pointed upwards, directing the sisters’ subtle attentions to a figure in one of the trees. A faint smile graced his lips as he watched her curly locks sway in the breeze, her expression steely. If he weren’t so immediately infatuated by the sight, he might’ve even been slightly fearful. “She’s truly-“
“A Blackthorne.” Annalise growled, narrowing her eyes at the vampire in the tree.
Rohlbert looked almost disappointed, “Really? Which?”
The eldest just shrugged, “Don’t know, don’t care.” She glared harshly at the Blackthorne. Amelie just grinned at the young Breton, almost chuckling.
“Don’t go there dearie,” He frowned at the term, glancing up to see if the Blackthorne had heard it… that’d be embarrassing, “The Keerilth have a peculiar scent.” She subtly insinuated, “Most unpleasant.” Ok… not so subtly.
Amelie spared a slanderous look at the Blackthorne, before facing forwards once more. Rohlbert raised his hand, a wide grin on his face, as he waved slightly at the Keerilth. Annalise quickly smacked it down, frowning at him, and dampening his own expression.
“They are not our friends.” She spat, “We are here to establish the terms of the Blackthorne rule in Southpoint, if they are to receive our complacency.”
Amelie laughed quite abruptly, “That’s the polite way of putting it.” Annalise just grunted, as the trio continued to make their way towards the town proper, and eventually towards the hall which housed the coronation ceremony.
- This reply was modified 4 months, 2 weeks ago by Ungoliant the Consumer.
12th Day of Hearthfire
Gladerunner cantered on the dull cobble road, a sense of familiarity in it’s gait. Oh his back was none other than the vexing figure of one white witch, sidesaddled in her standard attire. A white dress, bracered evening gloves, and riding boots and her hair thoroughly ponytailed all made her appearance in these woodlands more striking.
A little far forward, was the bulging mass of bones and leathers, surveying the road ahead. An angular full helm with antlered branches for horns caught the glint of light filtered briefly from the canopy. His war-torn shield graced his back, as did his name-worthy sword at his side, partially obscured by the leather faulds that started and draped at his lower back.
The road was not so familiar anymore, but the sights, sounds and atmosphere brought him a sense of calm, even through his layered armor. Every time he took a deep breath of the damp, untainted air made him less homesick of both the Imperial City and Arenthia.
But they had arrived.
The ‘Rich Blood’ Inn was an nondescript establishment, precariously formed around two massive trees alongside the weathered road. This place was a shady (in both senses) but it’s premise was simple. He set his horse loose as Veira slipped off, brushing off her skirt for posterity sake.
“Ah, the things I’ll have to do when we get home.” She murmured, thinking of all the spells she’d have to line up once this foray was done.
Gladius raised his lips in a small smile. “The price of being fashionable, yes?”
She glared at him with a raised eyebrow.
They entered the inn as the Bosmerknight tucked his helmet under his left arm. A strange sense of refinement washed over him, as the subtly extensive interiors splayed open. A well worn doormat was the last piece of wilderness as cushioned benches, wide tables and a resplendent counter framed the room. Even a few pieces of artwork littered the walls.
The only strange portent was the lack of candles, or even magical light. In it’s place were a few Ayleid stones; a Varla stone centering the chandelier, and Welkynd stones glowing harshly behind lanterns.
A familiar face greeted him. “Brother. Good to see you again.” The publican hollered, looking back to her documents as she filed them away neatly. Nymraphina put on a polished smile, something welcoming without being patronizing.
“My heart soars too.” He mumbled affectionately. “It’s been a while since we’ve caught up.”
Veira nodded a little. “No better place to ask for rumors I suppose.” She regaled, slinking into one of the cushioned benches.
Maerniel looked around. “You seem to be doing well.” He commended, something outside of his usual character. “Puts a whole new spin on pay with your blood.” He muttered, with concern.
The business model was simple. It was, for most intents and purposes, a fully functioning inn, with one caveat. For a full days meal and a room, you could pay with a pint of blood, given willingly. That blood was stored then sold (plus interest) to vampires on the onus and intent that they would never need to draw it harmfully from another person.
“Well, hard work is blood, sweat and tears.” She resoundingly answered, which Veira chuckled at. Maenriel unladened his coin purse, paying for their rooms and a staunch meal. While he had few qualms with the practice of blood ‘donations’, he despised the idea of his blood – especially when it was still magicka laced – being a snack for anyone.
“How are mother and father.” He asked, counting the last few coins and sliding the stacks over.
“Great, all things considered.” She announced. If all things remained constant, his mother was still one of their standout armorers, and his father was still teaching advanced close quarters combat to Bosmer soldiers. “I’d be more worried about Southpoint.” She returned, bringing a tray of drinks. One was Arenthian red, the other was Rotmeth.
Maenriel gingerly put his helmet on the desk, and picked up both drinks, ferrying over the wine to his dearest. “Pirates along the coast or worse?” Veira speculated, holding the wine glass emphatically as Maenriel leaned against the wall, breathing in homebrewed Rotmeth for once in a long time.
“Daedric Prince meddling, power struggles, and now a Blackthorne is poised to be the Major.” Nymraphina listed, slightly worried but nonetheless unphased. While her inn was between Arenthia and Elden Root – a popular course – Southpoint was, as self evident, far south. Decisions there would scarcely affect her.
Maenriel thanked Yffre he wasn’t drinking when he had heard that. “…A Blackthorne.”
Were memories so weak, that ostentatious crime could be committed one day, then forgotten in a matter of months or years? Had the people so willingly accepted anyone of authority that they were oblivious to true crimes and truer character?
The world had truly gone mad if blood sucking parasites were not only ruling the world, but getting away with it.
“Was there no-one else to take the position?” Veira asked, modestly interested in Valenwood’s
lack ofpolitical structure.
“The former Mayor was corrupted by Sheogorath. The Blackthornes stabilized the situation and reestablished order.” Nymraphina returned once more, now with a hearty stew (noticeably devoid of vegetables and decidedly full of various hearts).
“Not even the houses – or even someone from another town – or hell, a random adventurer – decided to intervene?” Maenriel fumed, finding the situation tense. Despite his aggravations, he settled for the stew sitting down beside Veira to calm himself.
“The war stretched people thin. The chaos stretched Southpoint to breaking point. Without intervention, it’s likely it would be a ghost town.” She consoled, repeating uncertainties from previous patrons.
Maenriel thought as he digested the information and his stew.
“…..Well…” He thought aloud.
“Oh dear, he’s about to do something rash and barely unexpected.” Veira sighed.
A smug smile pursed his lips. “…………………I’m going to run for Mayor.” He joked.
The ladies laughed.
14th Day of Hearthfire
Veira, Gladius and Gladerunner arrived in Southpoint.
Ash fell about in gentle, pre-dawn flurries. The mucksponge around the cornerclub was still puckered into itself after the rains the previous evening. It would be getting cold soon. Levin scratched at the first down of beard on his chin before hauling himself out of his is morning stupor. The firewood needed chopping, and dockworkers didn’t like cold tea. Especially not in Sun’s Dusk. He sighed a great billowing puff of steam and swung the ax in his hands down again. One. Two. Three. Chopping wood suited him just fine. The repetition of the action grounded him, made him solid. Whole. Besides, the back yard that served as an informal back-alley square provided a wonderful view. The Feast of St. Rilms approached, and the neighborhood children had commenced to decorating the night before. They seemed just as eager about their task this early in the morning. Lantern with Blessed Ayem’s glyph of fortune hung in strings between huts, trading blessings toward their counterpart’s house, and back again in colourful writing. Decorated pails with offerings to the poor stood like watchful guardsmer next to the door of every home. The last stoneflower blossoms of the year hung in wreaths, filling the air with their heady scent, like berries and burnt oil and cracked volcanic stone all in one. Crack, crack, the logs snapped in two. The wood soon ran out.
The air inside was heavy with a different mixture of smells. Fresh bread, hot from the oven, musky tea, the sweet acridity of hackle-lo frying in kwama eggs. He deposited the wood near the oven. He was doing well. Months without a drink. A far cry from she had found him curled in a sobbing ball in an alley. Covered in mud and vomit, stinking of regret and greef. She took him in, made her life his. She gave him a room in her club, The Lonely Oar. She gave him work. The last smell in the club was hers: sweet and crisp like a Skyrim apple in autumn, sharp as a cinnamon tea and fiery as her temper, earthy as the rich loam that the sea washed around the docks of Blacklight each day. Levin drank that scent in every day, like a life-giving elixir. The first of the evening crew began to push in through the door, puffs of ash trailing in after them. Most of them regulars. Nilns, Varees, and Uhkhanannentu, the ashlander tribesman who sold perch on Fredas. Levin turned toward the sound of Folsi calling him from the kitchens. “Levin? Can you put a fresh batch in the kettle? And get some fish out to the customers. Levin? Levin!”
The lanky dunmer startled awake, blood-red eyes locked onto Aguilian. To call Aguilian short would be a disservice to other Bosmer. The mer was absolutely tiny. Shorter than Junior, even. Even laying down, Levin’s face nearly touched his. “Ah, Master Scribe. Awake at last.” The merchant wrung his hangs, eyeing the knife Levin half-unsheathed as he started awake. “We’ve uh, reached Southpoint, mothsera.” Levin groaned and rolled out of the wagon, splattering into a patch of rutted mud, head pounding from the night before.
“Muthsera.” he grumbled through his dirt-caked beard.
“A thousand pardons?” The Bosmer inquired, doing a poor job of disguising his glee at seeing his charge so out of sorts.
“It’s pronounced,’Muthsera’. If you’re going to use my people’s tongue, do it right or keep your own still.” The spellsword hailed himself onto his knees, then, more slowly, to his feet. “Where in Vehk’s fetching name are we, anyway?” Trees surrounded the tiny caravan on all sides. No sign of Southpoint in sight, besides a more well-traveled road.
“A league outside of the city, or thereabouts, if it please?” The little merchant went back to his hand-wringing act.
“League ain’t no measure of distance. It’s just a lie farmers and ship captains tell to extort customers,” Their conversation began to attract attention from a dozen or so odd members of the cart train as they rolled by. Levin tightened the grip on his sword, brushing mud off his netch cuirass to loom over the little Bosmer. “So why are you trying to lie to me?” He growled.
“You only payed half!” the merchant squeaked.
“Guardung. I payed you full, and in advance.” he grabbed Aguilian by the collar. Terror filled the Bosmer’s eyes for a moment, only to be replaced moments later by a smug grin. Ah, but of course. Levin braced himself for the blow.
Levin tromped into Southpoint three hours later, boots caked in more mud, and face and body covered in a smattering of developing bruises. Things could have been worse. The caravan guards had emptied his obvious purse of everything valuable. The couple of gold drakes he baked into wax seals remained untouched, as did the dozen or so nordic iron pennies stuffed into a pouch in his boot. And they had torn his last good tunic. He sighed. No sense in dwelling on what’s done. There was work to do. Work valuable enough to make a return to the humid hell-hole that constituted the entire province of Valenwood worth his time. Word had it among his less scrupulous contacts that someone in this town possessed a text on how to summon a wrathman. Not the sort of thing he usually trucked with; the fact that negotiation with vampires likely adjoined the task brought him no pleasure.
The town itself was bizarre. Not in the way that some people associated with Valenwood for being bizarre. No wlaking trees of dog-sized ticks in sight. No, Southpoint was a disturbingly typical sort of Imperial town, smack in the middle of the rainforest. Temple to the Eight and everything. How they kept the wood from rotting, Levin couldn’t imagine. Still, it seemed pleasant enough. What children there were to play in the streets jostled for position to watch some big-wig Breton politician pass by. Curious, but nothing within the Dunmer’s strict purvey of intent. He caught a few stares of his own as he marched past into what was probably a general store. An Altmer woman manned the finely wrought wooden counter. Cyrodiilic lumber of course. Couldn’t afford the risk of insulting the local tree gods, or some other ridiculousness. Still, it inflamed the Boriche enough to make it not worth the effort. Levin’s time in Silvenar during the war proved that aptly enough. The Dunmer sauntered up to her. “Anybody able to tell me where to find a bookkeep?” The shopkeep looked over his bedraggled and filthy form with the sort of look most people give a stray dog if it walked in and asked where the tea porcelain was, and if it could borrow it. At least she kept the look out her tone.
“You want the town bookkep?” She asked, as if he had spoken in some half-thatched form of Tamrielic.
“Yes. S’grizrabbi. Khajiit. Heard he ran a book shop in town. Orangey fur, half-bitten ear. I was told he could procure for me a rare folio. Alderbaas Encyclical on Lunar Lattices. First edition. Gold and silver leaf illumination interplay between pages. That sort of thing.” Levin didn’t bother smiling. Clothes made the mer, and she had already made up her mind about him. Just mattered whether or not she felt like helping a mangy vagrant in foreign clothes.
“Ask somewhere else. I don’t know anyone in town by that name.”
Of course the locals were fetching paranoid.
- This reply was modified 10 months, 4 weeks ago by Bardicnonsense.
A Thorne In The Lion’s Paw.
Loredas, 15th day of Heartfire, 2E 583.
Ava Blackthorne & Marissa Blackthorne, Southpoint.
The sound of thunder echoing in the distance could be heard as the two sisters returned to Southpoint, they could see the dark clouds in the distance as they rapidly approached the city while riding along on the main road on horse back. Judging by the look of things it was more than likely it would storm through the night, and thus into the coronation tomorrow, at the very least there wouldn’t be very much sunlight for them to worry about during the festivities.
” Let’s get the horses inside the stables, we need to make sure everything is in order, then I want to have a chat with mother. ” Ava spoke to her sister, as she dismounted from her horse, before leading it inside of the stable. ” Come on Kira. ” Ava spoke softly, as she slowly lead the horse inside of the stables. Marissa followed just a few feet behind, helping Ava secure both of their steeds inside of the stables. ” Good girl. ” Marissa chuckled, as she gently patted her horse, as the sound rain drops could be heard gently hitting the ground, as well as the roof of the stables. ” Another storm, can’t argue with that, now can you ? “
Ava smiled, as she looked up at the sky. ” We can both agree on that, hopefully it keeps the sunlight at bay during the coronation tomorrow… “
” This one is at his wit’s end…. ” Do’dara spoke, as he quickly approached the two sisters, before leaning on the stable door.
Marissa laughed, ” What’s wrong Do’dara, did Dar Ri’var manage to steal it again ? “
” Very funny, but no he did not, and this one would very much like to forget such things. While sitting out by the dock this one noticed several ships approaching the city, Two brigantines either side of a large galleon, one that is now docked at our very own port, thought you would want to know. “
Marissa raised an eye brow. ” A large galleon, and two brigantines, that doesn’t sound good. Did you manage to see anyone, who are they, what are they doing here, that doesn’t sound like traders. We don’t even have that kind of space at the dock, the new addition is still being constructed as well. “
” This one spread the words the moment Do’dara spotted them, the galleon only just docked, so I’m sure we will soon find out. “
” Thanks for the heads up Do’dara. ” Ava spoke, before placing her hand on her chin. ” Wonder what is going on, let’s go see if we can find out, shall we ? “
Avelyn Blackthorne, Southpoint Docks.
” What in the blazes of Oblivion is this tub doing in our port, why did nobody inform me that we were to be having visitors ? ” The Keerilth muttered to herself, as she slammed shut her book, shoving it back into her backpack, before beginning to descend the tree back onto the ground below.
” What, does nobody greet anyone these days, such manors, such audacity. ” Avelyn tutted, as she inspected the galleon, searching for any sign of it’s crew, that’s when she picked up their scent, just as the wind shifted directions. ” Foul, unpleasant, disgusting, and anomalous, how peculiar. “
” Come on Akira, it seems we have quests to greet. ” Avelyn gestured, as her loyal husky looked up, before following her towards the center of town.
Adriyan Gavyrayn, Southpoint.
” It’s not every day you see another Dunmer arriving in Southpoint, can’t say any of them ever traveled this far for a book, but welcome to Southpoint regardless Muthsera. ” The Keerilth Dunmer spoke as he approached the stranger, shortly after overhearing all of his conversation.
” You can find the book shop near the market place, strangely enough it somehow managed to survive the recent chaos, if you can believe it. That Khajiit is fortunate, most of the other buildings had to be completely rebuild from scratch, including the town hall, as well as over half of the entire town. “
” Not even the Sujamma survived the insanity of the Mad God, who knows how long it will be before we get a fresh supply. ” Adriyan Sighed.
- This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by Ava Blackthorne.
Loredas, 15th day of Heartfire, 2E 583.
“It’s an end to the evil, of all skyrims foes.
Beware, beware, the dragonborn comes”
The sound of thunder ended the gentle singing as the wagon came to a brief stop and the driver took down his hood to look at the sky. Dark clouds covered the sky, signalling a storm was overhead. Perhaps it was an omen.
“Well Callus, wadda ya make of that huh?” The young lad asked of which the horse only neighed in reply “Aye. It is awfully suspicious indeed, how right of you to point out. Especially so because of what is to take place tomorrow” The horse appeared confused by the ramblings of the man. Strong winds blew through the trees, knocking leaves from their perch atop the branches of the tall trees of Valenwood. Little droplets of rain spattered down onto the pair while they waited on the cobbled road. With the wind came the smell of food and ale, the city of Southpoint wasn’t far now. With a whip of the reigns they were off once more, the colourful wagon rocking as Callus pulled it alone with ease.
Most of Valenwoods roads were overgrown though on the odd occasion, like this one, you could find a road that was relatively free of undergrowth. At the same time though, roads like this were more likely to be dangerous due to the smugglers and bandits who regularly used them. Other than tricking some of said bandits into drinking a paralysis potion the journey had been pretty quiet, apart from Rells singing. He had been sent to Southpoint as a scribe for the university of Gwylim in order to document the occasion and ensure a correct update of records. It was particularly odd that a Breton had found himself as the mayor of a Dominion city, an important trade city at worst. Surely they would have something to say about it.
After about ten minutes of travelling, Rell had finally made it to the outskirts of the city. By this time the weather had significantly worsened and the rain poured down onto anyone unfortunate to be outside at this time. Lucky for Rell, he had set up a tarp over all of his belongings earlier that morning in the event that it should rain, though the tarp wouldn’t be able to hold against such a downpoor for long. Noticing the stables nearby Rellicas directed the technicoloured wagon towards it and sheltered both the wagon and Callus within.
“Right, you stay here and mind the stuff” He absently told his horse, lifting his hood over his head as he walked away towards the inn. Once at the door he noticed some considerable repair work had been done to it recently, easily identifiable by the contrast in brown tones. As soon as he stepped foot within the inn his nose was filled with the most delightful scents of meat and strong beverages. The inn was empty barr the few regulars who paid no attention to the newcomer. The room was cosy thanks to the fire on the far left of the room and littered everywhere was ornate furniture made from the finest foreign wood. Eager for a drink Rell sauntered over to the counter and placed his firm buttocks onto the nearest stool.
“Argonian Bloodwine please, if you have it” He ordered after signalling over the barmer and then following up with a “Thankyou!” upon delivery. A sip of the deep red wine sent him into a sweet ecstasy, making him sigh refreshed.
Sundas, 15th Day of Hearthfire, 2E 583.
The ship had ported in Woodhearth a day prior, for Taure wished to walk the wooded path south east to the town. The trek had taken the better part of the day, but the sight was worth it, and the Valenwood forests had a peculiar relaxing effect on the Altmer. Unfortunately for the mer, a storm had pursued him since early yesterday, and caught up by the evening. The storm had been headed southward, in the same direction as he, and thus soured the last half of his journey.
Upon arriving at Southpoint, Taure wasted no time in attempting to get dry, and made his way directly to towards the Southpoint Inn; the billow of smoke escaping its chimney telling of a warm hearth within. Bunching the bottoms of his soaking robes together in one hand and lifting his staff in the other, the mer shambled rather unceremoniously towards the building, before slowing at its door and letting his clothes fall heavily. He opened the door to a rush of warm air, no doubt to the irritation of those inside, and closed it hurriedly behind him.
The hearth was disappointingly small, well, they both were. One sat at each end of the building, one at the far left, and another tucked into a nook on the right; though less visible. They were likely connected to the chimney at the buildings centre one would imagine. Regardless, Taure approached one, absorbing what heat he could; a little application of magic and his clothes were dry shortly. He wouldn’t wait out the storm, for the coronation would be within a few hours, but he’d take the chance that it would pass for a short while. Sniffing, Taure trudged towards the bar, his staff tapping against the stone floor as he walked. Surprisingly, the stone floors in Southpoint were not the result of the Green Pact, but rather Imperial design. If the Cathedral hadn’t been indication enough, when Valenwood was ruled by the Second Empire, Southpoint was the most important Imperial colony-town, and so much of its architecture resembled that of Cyrodiil’s.
“A tea, please.” Taure indulged the questioning look from the barkeep, and seated himself beside one of the patrons. The Altmer cast a short glance around, and stopped at the person sat beside him. He narrowed his eyes somewhat, regardless of how he may have looked, before widening them in realisation, “Rellicas Briden?” He scoffed in surprise, “You look different… more purposeful.” Taure tried to smile, “What brings you this far south?”
The rain fell heavily upon the Montclair host, though a shimmering sphere kept the trio dry. “Closed?” Amelie looked at the sign on the hall doors, indicating that the preparations had not yet been completed. “Are we supposed to wait out in this weather?” The Breton waved a small hand, the two lines of soldiers approached the hall, ascending the steps and formed a narrow corridor of sorts up to the large doors. Casting a quick glance aside, Annalise noticed one of the Keerilth staring at them, and axe resting on his lap as he dragged a whetstone across its blade in a repeated fashion. The Montclair glared harshly, before leading the others up the steps. As the trio made their way up, two soldiers opened the entrance into the building, allowing the Montclairs to enter, and then following behind them.
When all were inside, the doors were closed heavily behind them, making known their presence. Several workers were busy setting about benches, and along the walls were pinned various flags indicating the different houses of the Keerilth clan. A number of conversations halted when the Montclairs entered, making Amelie smirk slightly, passing by a small group. Leaned against the wall was a pale looking Breton, casting the occasional glance at the Montclairs as she spoke with the other two; one a Bosmer and the other a Nord – barbaric looking fellow.
“Who are all these people?” Rohlbert questioned, looking at the mixture of races, which was curious in a typically Bosmeri town. Annalise tsked, casting a cruel look towards a great many of those in the hall.
“Our enemies.” She commented, as they moved further into the hall, their soldiers following. Ahead, seated on a throne at the end of the hall sat Lycidas Blackthorne, and stood beside him was Gulum-Lei Caslus, one of the many Keerilth Amelie recognised. The Breton caught the eye of Lycidas, whom seemed not to have expected them to come barging in before the ceremony was ready. One of the Montclair soldiers stepped past the rest, and unravelled a small scroll.
“Presenting to the court of Southpoint, House Montclair.” He spoke loudly, addressing the entire hall, as Amelie alone walked towards Lycidas’ throne, “Introducing Lady Amelie Henrietta Montclair. First Matriarch of House Montclair, Queen of Shornhelm, Lady of Rivenspire and Grand-Duchess of the City-States of Daggerfall and Evermore.” Amelie stopped beside Lycidas Blackthorne, though spared no glance, as she looked out at the hall.
Now Annalise began the same march down the hall, “Introducing Lady Annalise Bellatricia Montclair. Second Matriarch of House Montclair, Commander of the Armies of Rivenspire, Knight-Captain of the High Rock Lion Guard and Contesse of Northpoint.” Annalise stood beside Gulum-Lei, the opposite side of Lycidas from Amelie, and too looked out at the hall.
Lastly, Rohlbert walked, though rather less imperiously, down the hall, “And introducing Master Rohlbert Montclair. Great-Great Nephew of Queen Amelie of Shornhelm, and ninth in line to the Throne of Rivenspire.” He stopped next to Amelie, looking up at her questioningly; to which she merely nodded her head slightly.
The Montclair soldier returned the small scroll to the small holster on his belt, and the two lines of guards marched along either side of the hall, taking stance next to the other guards stationed in the room. Once the small ceremony was over, Amelie addressed Lycidas at last, glancing down at him in his throne. “A fine town, Master Lycidas, a shame about the weather. What time should we expect the ceremony to begin?”
- This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by Ungoliant the Consumer.
A Thorne In The Lion’s Paw.
Loredas, 15th day of Heartfire, 2E 583.
Lycidas Blackthorne, Southpoint Grand Hall.
” The Queen of Shornhelm, how unexpected. ” Lycidas spoke very softly, leaning back in his throne, observing the gathering of Montclair’s before him. While their visit was unexpected, it was not all that surprising, he had anticipated visitors in some fashion, but the Montclair’s had surprised him by coming so far.
” Allow me to introduce the new Mayor of Southpoint, the protector of this city, and my Father Lycidas Blackthorne. ” Victoria Blackthorne spoke clearly, as she entered the room dawning her heavy armor, her hand resting on the large hilt of her sword as she entered the room just alongside the Montclair”s.
“…. Welcome …. ” Lycidas spoke in a loud, but calm, and very clear tone of voice.
Victoria Blackthorne cleared her throat, ” The Ceremony will be held from twelve in the afternoon, until twelve at midnight, everyone in Southpoint is invited to partake in the festivities. ” She answered the question, as she took her place next to her Father’s throne, as was her place in the court.
” You have traveled a long way from High Rock, tell me….. why have you traveled so far to Southpoint ? ” Lycidas raised the question, as he continued to observe the Montclair’s before him, he knew better than to trust them, and he knew enough about them to know their presence would be troublesome.
The Blackthorne’s, Southpoint Grand Hall.
Ava rapidly approached the town hall, stopping dead in her tracks the moment she got a whiff of the Montclair’s scent. ” I know that foul odor anywhere….. what are the those disgusting Montclair’s doing here in Southpoint ! ” Ava cursed to herself, as she rushed towards the doorway, with hatred pumping through her veins as she rushed inside of the building alongside her sister. The thought of Montclair’s being inside her home made her stomach turn inside out, she had half a mind to rush straight into the grand hall and stabbing every single last one of the Montclair’s directly in the spine before they could utter a single word.
Marissa quicken her pace to keep up with her sister, that’s when she heard the door opening behind her, turning to notice Avelyn entering the grand hall just behind her, probably curious as to why another faction of vampires was entering their home without having heard anything about it from anyone.
” What in the blazes is going on Marissa, what is that giant tub doing in our port, did you know anything about this ? ” Avelyn question as she approached both of her sisters, with Akira just a few feet behind of her, as was to be expected from such a loyal companion, as well as her protector for many years.
I have no idea as to exactly what the meaning of this visit is, but I guess we are about to find out aren’t we ? ” Marissa spoke, as she turned towards the hallway leading into the main hall, noticing a large amount of Montclair soldiers just at the end, standing in front of the throne itself.
Ava grinned, displaying her disgusted, as she marched into the main hall at a heighten pace due to her now foul mood. She simply remained silent as she approached the throne, making her way towards her Father’s side as she passed directly passed the Montclair’s without looking at any of them.
” This is going to be interesting. ” Avelyn thought to herself, as she followed directly behind Marissa, moving towards the throne in unity. By now a large amount of Keerilth had gathered in the grand hall, knowing that another bloodline of vampires was stomping about in their territory they were prepared for the worst, but remained silent as they allowed the two rulers to now converse among each other, still ready should anything drastic begin to unfold.
Creighton Blackthorne, Southpoint.
” Wondered when the storm would drag something in, what a fucking terrible scent, worse than wet dogs. ” The Keerilth spat, as he continued to drag the whetstone across the blade of his axe, in a repeated fashion as he sat on a large rock in the middle of the port side town as the rain continued to fall.
” Aren’t you going to go see what’s going on ? ” Saegus Velvntia questioned the large Breton as he approached, carrying a small book in his hands.
” Should I start hearing the clashing of blades, sure, but until they I rather not subject my nose to such torture. ” Creighton responded, not taking his attention off of sharping his axe for a single second, until he noticed Saegus walking towards the town hall as quickly as he could, causing him to laugh.
” You just can’t pass it up, can you, reminds you of Cyrodiil doesn’t it ? ” He laughed smirked.
Saegus Velvntia smirked as well, as he approached the doorway. ” You know me too well Creighton, far too well. ” He spoke loudly, as he entered the building. It wasn’t long before he entered the throne room, making his way towards the far end of the room, and sitting down on a bench, and quickly opening his book.
Eve Blackthorne, The Southpoint Inn.
” Wouldn’t mind some more soup, if you have any left. ” Eve spoke as she finished off her mug of Blackthorne Brandy, before slamming it down hard on the counter. ” Now that’s a stiff drink, might as well fill it up again……… wait did you just ask for some Argonian Bloodline ? ” She questioned the stranger.
” What you really need to try is some Blackthorne Brandy dear, made from the finest ingredients, imported straight out of the heart of Cyrodiil. ” Valithroth ! ” She spoke to the barkeep, ” A mug of Blackthorne Brandy, for our friend here, on me I insist ! ” She laughed, it being clear she was slightly drunk.
” One mug of Blackthorne Brandy. ” Valithroth spoke, as the Bosmer set the mug down on the counter, before starting to refill Eve’s as well. ” Did you hear about the large galleon docked at the port ? ” Wonder what’s going on out there, terrible weather to be traveling on the sea if you ask me. “
It was only just now that Eve had learned about the galleon docked in the port, but she cared little about it, if anything was seriously wrong it would of been painfully obvious at this point, ” My Father probably has visitors, besides I have a drink to finish first, it can wait. ” She spoke, before taking a large gulp.
” Here is your vegetable soup, and before you ask, yes it has leeks in it. ” Valithroth smiled, as he slid the bowl across the wooden counter.
” Many thanks Valithroth. ” Eve spoke softly as she took a spoonful of soup, followed up by some bread, as she continued to enjoy her normal food. She had always enjoyed the taste of common food, often mixing it with blood to properly satisfy her appetite, as well as her carving for delicious human meals.
Maxine Blackthorne, The Kestrel, Southpoint Docks.
” It seems the rabbits have discovered how to travel by sea, how intriguing… ” She spoke to herself, as she stood at the bow of the ship, as it sat anchored in the port directly next to the Montclair’s galleon. ” One would think such critters would remain on land, but it seems that is not the case. “
” Impressive, depressive, oppressive, what one best fits, hmm… ” The Keerilth muttered to herself, as she began to disembark from the vessel.
- This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by Ava Blackthorne.
15th Day of Hearthfire
Gladius had spent an entire day making sure how mad the town truly had descended. Every reasonable candidate had been brushed aside for the insurgent Blackthornes, more numerous in number than fleas circling a dead carcass.
For a second, he thought the entire town must have been enthralled. And, given the circumstances, that was the only logical assumption.
But apparently, the Blackthornes had managed some good deed to their name – one that apparently obscured their infamy outside of Valenwood. A massive technicality that drove the Bosmer to internally sigh. How quickly – and easily – one could escape their indiscretions, ignore their true nature, or conceal their history if they had awareness on their side. Two major houses – neither altruistic or in good standing themselves – had vouched for the Blackthornes, which made the whole collusion suspicious. If the Blackthornes were of the same ilk as Shadyhollow or Velvntia, then the corruption here was of the highest order.
There would need to be a sweeping bushfire to burn the old and decaying villainy so fresh roots could grow in its stead.
For once, Gladius didn’t think he’d be causing trouble in his own home country, but it seemed necessary.
Hijacking an area outside of the Town Hall – where many eager people were waiting, he delivered his sermon. It was time to take them to church – with the trees as his chapel, and Yff’re as his God.
““This is some group of people. Dozens. So nice, thank you very much… that’s really nice, thank you. ” He hollered, inciting attention as Veira – and even Gladerunner – embarrassingly shook their heads off in the distance. It wasn’t ideal, and it could backfire, but he said what needed to be said.
“It’s great to be at Southpoint, even better to be home in Valenwood, and it’s an honor to see my fellow kinsman here. You’ve had trials and tribulations, but your perseverance is beyond anybody’s expectations.” He aggrandized, showing a showmanship he preferred not to embellish. With the coronation later in the day, there was nothing really to draw their attention away.
“I can tell you, some of those bigshot Houses would be here, but they don’t know how this forest works. They’ll sweat like dogs in the summer, and get lost in how big the rainforest is.”
“Our country is in serious trouble. We don’t have victories anymore. We used to have victories, but we don’t have em. When was the last time anyone saw us beating, say… Morrowind? In a trade deal? They kill us. I’ve beaten Dark Elves all the time. All the time. When did we beat Alinor at anything? They send their moonstone over by the thousands, and what do we do? When was the last time you saw Bosmer workmanship in Cloudrest? It doesn’t exist folks. They beat us all the time. When did we beat Elsweyr at the border? They’re laughing at us – at our stupidity. And now they’re beating us economically. They are not our friend. Believe me. But they’re killing us economically.”
“Valenwood has become a dumping ground for everyone elses problems.” He accused, laughing internally at the complete bullshit he just had to utter for the sake of satire. To his surprise, a few people started …. agreeing? One person even cheered. Probably someone who had heard a few of the stories of Captain Arenthia.
Well… it was good to have a fan. “Thank you. It’s true! You guys are the best and the finest.” He pandered, reciprocating some praise, something he was sure those Blackthornes wouldn’t even consider as they sat on porcelain thrones.
“When Vampires send their people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re sending parasites that have lots of problems. And they’re bringing those problems with them. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists, and some I assume are good people.” He modestly corrected himself. The crowd seemed a little more decisive on the Vampire issue – which made it a perfect pressure point.
“But I speak to hunters and Imperial Guards on the borders, back when vampires savaged Cyrodiil, and they tell us what we’re getting. And it only makes common sense! They aren’t sending the right people. They’re coming from everywhere, not just from Valenwood. Probably from Skyrim.” He guessed. “See, each Vampire’s gotta feed on some bugger once every two to three days. Where are those people? What happens when they run out? Will it be you?” He pointed uncertainly for dramatic effect. “You? Or you?” He continued, making the rational indecision into an irrational one.
“But we don’t know, because we have no protection and no competence. We don’t know what’s happening, and it’s got to stop. And it’s got to stop fast.” He declared, pushing that uncertainty aside. Create a problem, then solve it. Perfect.
“Self proclaimed nobles and vampire terrorism is ripping up large portions of Tamriel. They become rich and they feed off the poor.” Gladius spat, not sugar coating his middle class perspective. “I’m in competition with them. They just staged attacks and thefts on the Imperial City… can you believe this? They aren’t even paying for their crimes, whereas I have to follow laws. Vampires and nobles – they don’t follow the laws. They’ve sucked out the gold, claimed all the lands and they’ve ruined the military. And I want to have the strongest military for Valenwood, and we need it more now than ever.” He proposed, a tenuous topic given the freshness of the last war – but still not the worst solution to an invented problem.
“We’ve lost thousands of gold and hundreds of lives fighting Molag Bal, his necromancers, his legions of vampires and the many fancies of nobles who wanted land. And we’ve got even more wounded. I respect the veterans. Who I love. I’m one too.” Gladius proudly stated, thumping cavity of his bone breastplate for dramatic effect. “They’re great. And we have nothing to show for it. Nothing!” He quickly postulated, drawing lines between patriotism and the dubious times they were living in.
“Last quarter, our exports were below zero. Zero! A lot of good people can’t get jobs! Because the Altmer have our jobs, the Khajiit have our jobs, and … the vampires have our jobs. They all have our jobs! And no-one talks about it.” He bickered, now painting a picture of detestability. He could tell he was opening a few eyes, some remaining staunch as they were before.
“Our enemies are getting stronger by the day, and we are getting weaker. Even our Green Pact arsenal hasn’t been used. And it sends a signal to all the other leaders and people that we’re a people who don’t know what they’re doing.” He squabbled, finishing the segment on a point of defeatism.
“When was the last time you heard any of the houses speak of any of this? I’ve dealt with nobles and vampires all my life, and I hate it. They’re controlled fully by anyone with money. They all have flowery rhetoric, but they never talk jobs! Sometimes they’re great, but it won’t happen. We have to stop doing things for a select few and start doing better for the country and its people.” He exclaimed in rhetoric.
“We need great leaders. People who have been in the fire, stood side by side with the backbone of the country. We don’t need cheerleaders or criminals making our decisions.” He pointed at the Town Hall, where lazy Blackthornes lay. The ones imbedded in the crowd and beyond would likely be at his throat soon, so now he to nail down the speech.
“I want to make Valenwood great again. I’m going to campaign to be Mayor of Southpoint – with your approval – and we’re going to make this country great again.” He defiantly stood straight. “I am Gladius – The Bosmerknight. For decades I’ve called Arenthia and Valenwood home. Day in, I’ve made weapons and armor that respected the Green Pact. Day out, I’ve fought our enemies – wildfires, bandits, and Daedra of all sorts.” He listed, starting his resume of sorts with his (despicably wafer thin arguments) laid out. “I joined the Dominion to protect my country – so my life would mean something. I left because the war was over – and I had something worth living for. But I see Valenwood has need of strong and clear leadership once more. I voice this dissent with reluctance that the Blackthornes may indeed be ideal custodians of Southpoint.” He admitted, deep in thought.
“…But. I’ve met Blackthornes abroad. And they were all the same.” He recalled, finally solemn. “They are petty. Greedy. Selfish. They have no qualms about killing or feeding on anyone. They’ll slaughter people on a whim just to believe themselves better than us.” He opened his arms, referring to people who enjoyed daylight. “They believe themselves above you, and will never ever see you as equals.” He finalized, his grave tone ringing true.
“Naturally though, you can believe what you want.” He relaxed, losing any seriousness. “You can enjoy your citizenship under vampires. Perhaps it will end well. Perhaps it will not. Should you take that chance?” He proposed.
He left the question hanging, and stopped himself with a smug grin as he jumped down from the tree trunk that made his makeshift podium.
The damage was done. Now… now he would invite any Blackthorne – or worse – to challenge him. He was an affront to their thin veneer of civility, and like a eucaluptus tree in a brushfire, their true colors would explode in a fantastical manner.
” Not even the Sujamma survived the insanity of the Mad God, who knows how long it will be before we get a fresh supply. ” Adriyan Sighed.
“Indeed,” Levin raised an eyebrow at his fellow East-Elf. “Thanks for the tip, kinsmer. Blessings of Almalexia upon you.” The book-hunting mer stalked off in the direction of S’grizrabbi’s shop before his conspicuous counterpart felt provoked into commenting further. Sudden rain squalls. Somehting not right with that one’s eyes. ‘Rabbi better know what’s going on here. The storm picked up with the sudden intensity that only western gales seemed to match, quick gusts of stinging rain into the eyes, wet and fat and hot. It wasn’t long before Levin turned the corner to find his quarry. “The Fury Folio? Really ‘Rabbi?” the Dunmer shook his head in bemused disbelief as he pushed inside.
“Don’t you track mud on S’grrizrabbi’s ruhgs!” A scratchy voice called out from the back room of the store. The shelves lay surprisingly bare for a book store. The wood of the sitting furniture smelled to strongly as well. The fabled rugs showed signs of extensive cleaning, and recent replacement upon the floors. The storefront was practically pristine. ‘Rabbi emerged from his warren a moment later, still yowling. “…it took two months to clean those out last time. Two months! Do you kn-Oh. Leviin. It’s you.” He stood for a moment before adjusting his badly fitted spectacles. “Come come, sit, please, by the fire. And take your boots off. You are dripping on theh ruhgs.
“Thanks, ‘Rabbi,” Levin opened the door for a moment to wring out his sodden cloak, water pouring from the thin, holey material. ‘Rabbi showed his teeth in displeasure when some of the splash came in through the shop door. “I’ll get right down to it.” The Dunmer sat in one of the stores sumptuous sitting cushions. “I’m looking for a book. A rare book. Written in Daedric. Goes by, How to Summon a Wrathman. Got a friend who said you knew someone who is going to lay hands on one, or already has. You wouldn’t happen to have it down in that skooma-hole of yours already, would you?”
“Is the smell that strongly?” Levin nodded, eyebrows raised and lips pursed. “Damn. This one will fix it in a moment. For now though…you know of the ceremony today, yes?” Another, less sharp nod.
“Don’t know who won the Miss Southpoint award this year, no.”
“This is serous, Leviin. The town elected a Breton mayor. A vampire Breton mayor.”
“They all gone moonier than the Mad God?”
“This one does not know. What he does know is the ceremony begins at noon. S’grrizrabbi will be hiding in his shelter, and hoping the vampires do not roam the streets looking for blood. He is new here as well.”
Levin’s eyebrows had been creeping up his forehead. Now they hit apex. “The vampires? The? How many of the fetchin’ things are there?”
“Dozens, maybe, this one does not know. The townsfolk accept them thus far, for the most part. S’grrizrabbi does not take chances with these things. It is why he still deals in sugar, while his enemies eat the dirt of the grave.” ‘Rabbi coughed. “There is one other detail you must know. The woman who has the book you seek, or should possess it, is one of them. Tread carefully on these sands, Leviin. You are far too useful to any of us in theh beesiness to lose to th bihte.”
“Fret not,” Amelie smiled to herself, “We’ll attend to business after the coronation. Let the people enjoy the festivities for now.” The Breton retained her posture, glancing around the room. The hall was close to being ready, and no doubt others were eager to begin and escape the downpour outside. “House Montclair looks forward to working with the Blackthornes,” She looked at Lycidas out of her peripheral vision, “An end to our past toils.”
Rohlbert’s eyes were fixated on the approaching Breton, the one he’d spotted earlier in the tree. The young man let slip a small smile, and once more raised his hand to wave at the girl.
“I’ll cut it off.” Annalise growled, making the vampire drop his hand once more. “Keep your eyes forward Rohlbert. Don’t get distracted.” The Breton’s shoulders drooped slightly. He’d never realised going out in public was such an affair, having been used to remaining separate from all this social nonsense. Annalise would typically agree, but whilst they were here as the stronger house, the Montclairs couldn’t afford to show any kind of vulnerability when under the scrutiny of the Keerilth; and had to maintain their superiority.
“I’m guessing we’re not allowed to eat any of the food either, or join in the dancing?” Rohlbert questioned, those having been the only things he’d looked forward to when the sisters had ordered him to join them.
The corner of Annalise’s mouth curved upward, “I’ll cut out your tongue and break your legs if you do.” The younger Breton scoffed, but noticed her grin. He thought that meant she was joking… she wasn’t joking.
Rellicas was just about to yawn when a familiar voice interrupted him. Turning to his right he noticed the old Mer glaring at him as the bar tender brought over his tea.
“Master Tavari? What a pleasant surprise” He replied intrigued as to the magicians magic appearance “More purposeful?” Rell then began looking himself up and down frantically looking for anything in his appearance that had changed since last time. Same Leather armour. Same sword. Same cloak. He glanced back to Taure, awkwardly looking at his reflection behind the bar out the corner of his eye. As far as he was aware, he looked the same. Perhaps this was the Altmer’s way of opening up conversation.
“yeah… more purposeful…” Another thought crossed his mind. What were the chances of this meeting? Was Taure spying on him? Was the Dominion cutting off loose ends? naaaaaaah they wouldn’t dare. Who else could bring them such high quality medicine?
“I’m here on behalf of the university of Gwylim, I am to document the event and update the records as to the new mayor of southpoint aswell as fill out a family tree. What about you my friend, what brings you here? And how did you get here? I didn’t notice you on the road otherwise I would have given you a ride. Did you teleport or something?”
Rell went in for another sip of his sweet wine and then offered enough money to the bar keep to pay for both his and Taure’s drink, smiling lightly as he did so. The room was beginning to warm him up so he removed his cloak in order to prevent himself from getting too hot.
“The University?” Taure raised a brow, “You’ve certainly made your mark these past few years; but I deign to say your task is not an enviable one.” He glanced past him at the Blackthorne whom had seated herself close by. “I think we’ll make do with purchasing our own drinks, but your generosity is duly noted.” The Altmer smiled at the Breton forcefully, though it was a well-practised and transparent farce, “On that note,” Taure returned his attention to Rellicas, slipping a few coins from a pouch in his robe and pushing them towards the Imperial, “It would be imprudent for me to allow you to buy my drinks.” The mer earned too much to be offered charity, even if it was but a friendly gesture.
He glanced out the window across the room momentarily, the downpour still heavy as when he entered, “No.” He muttered, turning back to Rel, “I took the Northern road down from Woodhearth.” He shook his head, chuckling slightly, “I’d have docked in Southpoint if I’d anticipated a storm as bitter as this.” The Altmer leaned back, sighing, “As for why I’m here… I’ve been granted temporary leave, and thought I’d enjoy the festivities.” Taure’s tone and lasting look indicated quite clearly that wasn’t the entire truth, but he wasn’t going to go bellowing out that the Crown distrusted the Blackthorne’s and consequently Southpoint.
The Altmer thanked the barkeep for the tea as it was passed to him, and took a grateful sip from the scalding drink. He grimaced as the liquid burned, but the warmth was welcome, even if slightly painful. Instead of chilling it somewhat, as he usually might, Taure settled for keeping his hands wrapped tightly around the ceramic in an attempt to effortlessly warm them.
“I fear the storm won’t let up,” He cast a glance to Rellicas, “I imagine this inn will become quite full, quite fast. A good opportunity for you to start working, I’m sure.” He smiled sarcastically.
Finding no reprisal other than hushed whisper and indecisions, Gladius and Veira finally made it to the local watering hole. While the tree canopy offered respite from the downpour, such trees were a rarity in the mostly cleared Imperial view of civil planning.
Veira twirled a frost parasol, which was expansive enough to cover her from the rain, even if the wind blew it at a variable angle. Gladius for the most part endured as what felt like a thousand substandard Nordic arrows pinged off his carapace. Veira retracted the brolly into her palm, as a small excess of ice and rain was flicked away in a brief spray of snowflakes. Gladius briefly pulsed a flamecloak, engulfing himself in a brief plume of fire which startled the nearby patrons. After a few seconds, it harmlessly was reabsorbed as a now bone dry Gladius followed Veira to the tavern bar.
“Jagga, extra dry, thanks.” The Bosmerknight ordered, sliding over the amount for the both of them.
“Well…. I may as well try the local specialty.” Veira regaled casually. “The freshest Blackthorne brew, dear.” She asked, which the publican nodded at. The well aged Bosmer prepped the Jaga for a clay mug, adding a sliver of honey to make it ‘dryer’. Alongside it, a relatively pristine bottle from the top-shelf was uncorked, and swiftly served into an adjoining mug.
Gladius took off his helmet, sitting at the bench and plopping his helmet on it. His peripheral vision opened up…
“….Oh, son of a birch….” he muttered, pretending a certain Altmer wasn’t on his right as he swivelled to his left.
Veira put on a practised expression, a recurring theme when it came to his husband’s frenemies. “Ah, Taure. How utterly but pleasantly unexpected.” She reacquainted, not preempting Tavari’s appearance here, let alone a tavern. “And……….” she feigned in remembrance, snapping her gloved fingers at the Imperial. “…..Rellicas…! You look well, all things considered.” She commented, leaning back a little to exaggerate her attenpts to look him up and down.
Maenriel grumbled something in the opposite direction, taking gingerly sips inbetween remarks. “…..Great, all the troubadours in one place…. that can only mean we’re being invaded….”
“Made my mark these few years?” Rellicas was confused as he had always been with the Gwylim, but he would forgive Taure, after all he hadn’t bothered to get to know him much so such information may have came as a shock. Moments later the Altmer rebuffed his kind deed leaving Rellicas yet more perplexed, what little he knew of Taure meant that he wouldn’t do it over a sense of superiority however returning a gift detracts from the purpose of giving “I shant be working in here, not the correct atmosphere, after all I have a meeting with the head of the Blackthorne family – Lydicas – in a short while” One always had to try and see past the strange altmeri customs, though a simple nord may mistake it for arrogance those bright enough were able to notice the good in deeds, however little it was. Respecting the altmer’s wishes to purchase his own drinks, he gently scooped up the coins offered to him and slunk them back into his money pouch that sat within his bag.
“On second thought” He flicked his hand up to signal the bar keep over “May I have some elsweyr fondue, with bread and venison please” Rell was rather hungry after his long journey and right now he craved some of the dominions culinary delicacies. Just as the bar keep moved off to fulfil the order a familiar voice and yet another mention of his name drew his attention.
Rell sheepishly turned around to see he was now in the presence of the Oakveil’s.
“Glad you remember me so well” He remarked, almost undiscernible as to whether he was being genuine or sarcastic “Hello again Veira!” Once more his thoughts were halted by strange remarks.
“All things considered?” Rell thought aloud. Noticing the bosmer knight trying to remain out of conversation merely waved at him through a mirror and tossed a greeting his way “Good to see you again Maenriel” Turning back to Veira he continued the conversation “So what brings such a cheerful pair to a city that is rumoured to have an infestation?”
The Altmer’s expression dimmed, as he first caught the eye of Veira. “Yes,” He absently remarked, turning his look to the back of Maenriel’s head, “This is a pleasant surprise.” He’d received their letter, and it hardly took a moment to understand that though it was written by Maenriel’s hand… it was Veira’s words on the parchment. Perhaps that was a good thing, there was the clear possibility of Maenriel having still been hostile, and Taure took comfort in the somewhat reassuring words… that it wasn’t all over quite yet. He was re-assured though, even without the letter, when he’d made the journey to Ysolde’s grave on the anniversary of her death. The Altmer could not express how grateful he was, regardless of Maenriel’s reasons… and so he never had.
Taure took a breath, glancing once more at Veira, realising how restricted his possible topics of conversation just became. Light-heartedness would imply he was uncaring or at least oblivious to the current state of affairs, but to directly broach the obvious subject would be as impudent; for this was hardly the place or time. Maenriel had the correct stance, though hardly solved anything, and Taure was never one to avoid resolving their issues… or at least avoid trying to.
“Thank you.” He spoke hesitantly, biting his tongue immediately after. His eyes flicked to Maenriel, before he raised his cup once more, taking a slow sip of his drink. Taure gyrated the cup gently, staring into the swirling liquid; noticing some left over bits of tea-leaf, and realising the bitter taste in his mouth. Perhaps this storm was a gift of the fates… or perhaps it was quite the opposite.
Maenriel merely gave the pair a glare and a gruff nod, before returning to his drink and nondescript view of the tavern wall.
“All things considered, yes.” Veira reiterated. “It’s vast improvement over being passed out in the shrubbery, yes?” She playfully mused. On the rare occasion her neighbours would ask her about the beggar outside of their premises, she could only laugh it off to the way the big city grinded you down. “As for why we’re here…” She glanced at Maenriel, hoping he’d elaborate.
One swift elbow in the back and Maenriel finally spun around, a grimace on his face.
“………..I came to return this.” He pointed, at the old gnarled shield on his back, which they no doubt had plenty of time to notice. “Though now that I’ve arrived, I’m…. worried. Infestation is the kindest word I can think of this.” He scorned, waving one gauntleted arm at the veneer of the surroundings. “Vampires clans were bad enough when they were underground, but now that they’re in broad daylight without sunburn…” He quibbled, another frown creeping across half of his face. “What’s next? Jormungandr? A Dunmer? A Grayscale?” He scoffed, before lifting a finger. “A Montclair? Or worse – a boat full of them. Ugh.” He recoiled, suppressing that thought as he drowned it with a swig on Jagga.
Veira rubbed a temple at the standard grouchiness, knowing a redirect at this point was necessary, lest he say the entire town were thralls. “So, what have you two fine gentlemen been up to.” She cheerily feigned, swirling the Blackthorne swill, chilling it through her glove and smelling it for good measure.
A Thorne In The Lion’s Paw.
Loredas, 15th day of Heartfire, 2E 583.
Lycidas Blackthorne, Southpoint Grand Hall.
” If that is your desire, then we shall speak, when the time is more fitting. ” Lycidas spoke, still leaning back in his throne as he contemplated the Montclair’s next move, as well as the move after that. He was always one step ahead of his enemies, and that would remain true when dealing with the Montclair’s.
“ An end to our past toils. ” Was the last thing he heard coming from her lips, ” He was very familiar with what she was speaking of, and he found it quite humorous that just hours before the coronation they had come seeking to mend the animosity that had continued brewing since their last encounter.
” We shall see. ” He thought to himself, as he carefully watched their movements, not over looking a single detail. He knew the Montclair’s were not a very straight forward people, the likely hood of an assassination attempt was slim to none, and even if that was the intention the Blackthorne’s more than held the advantage in every possible way. They had the numbers in their own blood, the city guard, as well as the locals who supported them. If anything the shear amount of Blackthorne’s, Shadyhollow’s, and Greycloak’s in the room was nothing more than a show of force to any enemies who entered their halls. By now the majority of the clan had gathered inside of the throne room, as well as the rest of the great hall, in case of a conflict. This was the first time that a another vampire clan had openly entered the city to meet with the Blackthorne’s, and they intended to clearly show that the Montclair’s that this was their home. Regardless of their intentions in Southpoint the Keerilth were not going to simply roll over, the Montclair’s had been only known as their enemies until now.
Eve Blackthorne, Southpoint inn.
The comment about an infestation caused the Keerilth to give a look of distaste towards the Imperial boy, he clearly had no wits about him making a comment like that in the presence of a Blackthorne. She had half a mind to reach over, cut his throat, and rip his tongue out through the wound.
” There is a infestation, but thankfully it just outside of Southpoint, yet it still remains quiet the issue…. ” She responded swiftly, trying to make it sound like she didn’t know that they had been speaking about the presence of vampires in the city. She simply remained calm, and continued her meal.
” I’m sure you have heard of the attacks along the main road ? ” She questioned the Imperial, as well as the others. ” Thanks to a pack of local were wolves we have lost several member’s of the community, ranging from a young Wood Elf, all the way to a Khajiit caravan, as well as it’s armed escort… “
She took another large drink, this time swiftly placing the mug back down on the splintering counter top. ” Thankfully we are safe here in the city, The Sentinel Claws, as they like to call themselves are not foolish enough, or strong enough in number’s to try assaulting the city directly. “
The Keerilth took another drink, this time finishing her mug, ” Another, if you would be so kind. ” She brushed her hair aside, as Valithroth filled the mug with another serving of the Blackthorne’s specialty brandy. ” These are interesting times, can’t hurt to play it safe, and in this weather I’m happy to be here. “
” Warm, good food, good drink, what is their not to like about Southpoint ? ” She laughed softly, ” Cheers. ” She raised a toast, before returning to her meal.
- This reply was modified 10 months, 2 weeks ago by Ava Blackthorne.
The mere mention of ‘good drink’ left the Bosmerknight wholly and utterly triggered. He slumped momentarily, almost as if he could not believe what was just said, the turned around and stood up to size up the harlot who had – in bad taste – uttered that saying.
“……Yffre’s boner…” he growled, at the sheer audacity, ignorance, arrogance or cluelesssness at what had just transpired. She was either one of them, a thrall, or completely oblivious to the problem. Something was utterly familiar about her, but he paid it no heed. Whether he knew her or not matter little.
“I’m sure you’re aware, the Blackthorne and their ilk are vampires. An Infestation, maybe.” He surmised, talking to the increasing number of patrons entering and changing their concentration to the height of the debacle. “To stay in a humanly guise, a vampire must drink once a day – anywhere from a mouthful to a litre.” He guessed, obviously not one to have measured such a deed first hand.
“The average person reconstitutes a litre of blood every 3-4 weeks. Around 24 days, give or take.” He averaged, somewhat informed based on Jojija’s triage musings. “Thus, it would take anywhere from one to twenty four people to keep just one of your vampire overlords satiated.” He calculated, letting the number sink in.
“So how many vampires are there, pray tell? One? Two? A Dozen? More?” He stipulated, letting the crowd murmur their guesses. “Maybe your Blackthorne retainers have several hundred people shackled as midnight snacks. Maybe the recent attacks aren’t werewolves, but vampires snatching people for later. Maybe when they run out of merchants, they’ll feed on whoever else they deem unimportant.” He wildly accused, knowing it could neither be proven or disproven – for now.
“That said, the Jagga is quite nice. My compliments to the publican.” He graciously but shallowly bowed, before taking his seat again. “THAT. Is a good drink.” He finished, daring another Blackthorne to respond.
A Thorne In The Lion’s Paw.
Loredas, 15th day of Heartfire, 2E 583.
Eve Blackthorne, Southpoint Inn.
The Keerilth nearly choked on her soup, nearly dropping her spoon into the bowl due to the ignorance standing just a few feet away from her. ” Well seeing how I’m a member of the Blackthorne House, I suppose you could say I know I thing of two about my own flesh & blood… ” She spat. ” The only infestation that posses any sort of danger to this city is out there, lurking around in the woods, like a bunch of wild dogs. ” The Breton slowly stood up from the counter, her one leg tightly bandaged, causing her to put most of her weight onto the counter to support herself due to the increasing amounts of pain.
” If there aren’t any were wolves roaming about, then what did this ? ” She questioned the strange, yet somewhat familiar BosmerKnight, just before revealing her still somewhat recent wound. ” The only person shackled inside of this city, is the same person who is responsible for this mess. The beast that did this to me is the same thing that slaughtered that child, and they don’t care who they kill, they do it for sport. ” She spoke, before sitting back down.
” It’s not a secret that my family are vampires, everyone in the town knows about it, and nobody in this city has ever been feed upon by a single member of my family. Sheogorath didn’t care about vampires, humans, Wood Elves, or anything in between when he nearly destroyed this city not too long ago. ”
She once again adjusted her hair, this time getting in the way of her eyes. ” We are in this together, be it against The Mad God himself, The Sentinel Claws, the local bandits who set our caravans on fire, or the damned pirates who plunder along the coast of Southpoint, all the way down to Anvil in Cyrodiil. “
” You are not the first traveler to be weary of vampires, and I don’t expect you to be very trusting. With that said you should speak with my Father, Lycidas Blackthorne, the new Mayor of Southpoint. I’m sure he can do a much better job of explaining how both this city & my family operates. “
” We have lived in this city for many years, and everyone in this city is either my friend, or my family, you would do best to remember that… ” The Breton spoke as she once again stood up, this time making her way over towards one of the tables in the corner. ” If you’ll excuse me, I have reading to attend to. “
- This reply was modified 10 months, 2 weeks ago by Ava Blackthorne.
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