Private Tales Misery Business

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Cato

Blackshield Captain
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"I swear I don't know nothing about anything," the battered sellsword plead. Cato stood not two feet from his pathetic peer and said nothing. The Blackshield captain looked towards the rest and only saw his shared skepticism reflected in their faces. Hard eyes found the beaten brute's body once more. Poor bastard had been in the business long enough to know that he wasn't getting any sympathy. A flicker of doubt was all Cato needed to press forward.

A genuine sigh. "Think you know where this is headed..."

Cato let his words hang heavy in the air. The presence of six other bloodthirsty mercs also made for significant weight. None spoke but it was clear that patience was limited.

"Fine!" conceded the bloodied man. "Was Karlar that hired us. He figured yer lot were hired by the Baron to deal with him. Guessing he was wrong."

The mercenary captain looked to the others and saw a mixture of confusion and amusement. To think some dumb merchant's paranoia had nearly gotten them killed. Smart money was to just say this was a mistake and go on their way. Best choice for some normal outfit but this was the 'Shields. Blood needed to be paid in kind. Two of theirs had bought the farm because of this little misunderstanding, and that needed answering.

He gave a pointed look at one of his men and then left the tavern basement. Cato found a handful of 'Shields including the the captain of the Fourth, a man who had never known sobriety.

"Seems we got ourselves caught in the middle of something properly fucked. Price still needs to be paid. Got us a name. 'Fore that I need to know if you and your boys are in?"
 
An empty glass sat before a red faced boulder of a man, his hair a wild mane of black about his bristly beard. "Are we in?" he grunted with a grim amusement, his thick and calloused fingers wrapped about the neck of a bottle that sat before him. "We are the Bloody Fourth," he poured amber spirit into his cup as the shutters clattered against the window panes and a chill pervaded through the near-empty tavern. "Ask yourself, Cato," he grinned wide and thirsty as his cup near spilled over. The pour stopped clean. "Does the wind howl?"

Haunting was the sound of the wind as it swept through the silent room.

Enkhtuya, gave a solemn nod as she sat across from her father.
"A loss to the second is a loss to all, captain Cato,"

Khulan tossed back his drink without joy, the cup come clack down hard against the wooden table. "Raaaaah!" He expelled his breath with a tiger's maw, tongue out, nose crinkled with rage and disgust and his long yellow teeth bared before they showed foul smile. "For every one we lose, we take four more," he spoke without doubt, pushed out his chair and stood. "Just tell us the when and where, and our hogs will be there to make it true,"

Enkhtuya bowed her head in agreement, and rose up to show her readiness.
 
"I don't fucking know Khulan, some times it doesn't," Cato responded with an exasperated sigh. The mercenary had become accustomed to his peer's mannerisms and yet he had not. Cato still couldn't help but smile at the other captain's words. It was good to know that the 'Shields were still the 'Shields. They may have been coin-obsessed bastards but took care of their own.

Cato still held a sense of wonder as the the Red Ass poured the perfect drink.

"I'm glad there's at least someone with some sense in the Fourth," the mercenary said to the other company's second. He barely meant those words knowing that daughter was very much like father when it came down to it. He had to admit that both of their words resonated among the rest of the crew. Unity could be hard to find among mercenaries but the Blackshields had a history. Not one that could be ignored.

"We do this right, won't have to make those calculations." Cato stated vindictively. "'Hogs will be needed though," he added.

The mercenary captain sat back in his chair as he considered how best to proceed. "Well, they thought we were likely to make a mess in town. Go ahead and do it. Don't kill anyone, but it'll certainly draw Karlar's attention."


Khulan Altan
 
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Khulan grinned. "Hogs are always needed," sure as shit, even when he wobbled some. His bear paw of a hand grabbed up the clay bottle on the table, poured more of its amber confines into the cup. Nearer to catastrophe once more. But the spill did not come, even as he raised the bottle up high and the stream poured long ways down.

With a deft switch of his motion, he ceased the pour, and grabbed up the cup with his off hand, jut it toward Cato, and still, no spill. Rough as the big man was, his hands were always steady.

"No blood?" he grunt a harsh laugh, hot breath hanging by his lips. "Least, no blood yet," the Ass grinned sharp. "A fire raid then," he nod with excitement, while he swayed under his own weight. "Loud and fast,"

Khulan grabbed up the bottle and raised it in toast. "To our success," he said with breathy smile.


It was night, and Karlar's men were busy with readying for rest. Their perimeter thin. "Hey uh, ya'll hear that?" one young man asked.

But a lute player was too busy with his work to answer the question, fingers dancing along gut strings.

Cloven hooves thundered, and warriors bellowed their challenge in shouts as the great boars of the Bloody Fourth squealed hellish challenge. With arrows ablaze, the riders wheeled out of range of their foes, busily rushing toward their kit.

Arrows let fly, like a curtain of fallen stars, and war horns blared like thunder from the clouds of dust kicked up by the fourth's approach.

Course, the boars were but a wall of muscle and steel. Bristling with armor and spikes, they would crush whatever came to meet them under their trotters.

The campsite slowly caught ablaze, and alarm started to ring.

"Bait them out! Pepper them before we turn and run!" Enkhtuya called out to her horse archers atop her own stout steppe horse.

Khulan grinned, his eyes glint with the moon's light. "Will they be fools enough to chase," he wondered aloud.
 
Fools they were.

A debt needed to be paid but Cato wasn't keen on making more enemies in the process either. They had wrongly been taken as the Baron's men and the noble was content to let that misunderstanding persist. Wily bastard realized the 'Shields were likely to clean his problem up without spending a single coin. The mercenary captain had a mind to change that, but that was for later. This little relationship they had would fall apart if the 'Shields started a battle near the town. Fighting these cunts was one thing, a company of knights was another.

Cato had to give it to the 'Ass, the man's belligerence was unrivaled. How many poor bastards had the mercenary seen get enraged by the Fourth's hogs. Hells, half the 'Shields could barely stand 'em. Still, Cato and members of the Third remained ready in waiting. The sound of approaching hooves and freely given curses told them the time was nigh.

The hogs passed them, and then came the few of Karlar's men who found mounts. Cato let them pass, sure that the Fourth would handle their business. A torrent of steps and shouts followed not long after. The mercenary captain raised his hand, signalling his men to stand ready.

An unnatural silence settled upon the area as all held their breath before the plunge.

His hand snapped downwards and all manner of chaos was unleashed. Arrows, spells, poisoned daggers; every bit of fuckery that the Third had at their disposal. Cato and his men were well rewarded for their patience. "Alright you bastards, time to collect!" the captain barked at his men. The 'Shields roared before throwing themselves into the fray.

Khulan Altan
 
Squeals that split like thunder come after the zap of lightning. Shrieks that cracked the air, and shattered through the skulls of the enemies as trotters trampled and tore at the earth itself. Set it to rumble and shake. It was like music to the ears of the drunken Red Ass.

"Ready now!" Khulan bellowed out. " Their blood runs hot!" He laughed mad. Wide eyed and wider grinned as the silver beast beneath him trumpeted its eagerness.

The horses were fast, but the pigs were armored, and thick. Some shot arrows off their mounts, that pinged off plating, or zipped past thick hide.

The 4th's own mounted skirmishers rode downrange, firing back at their pursuers. The first volley plunked and plinked against rider, some hit mount's flesh.

How Khulan wanted to tear into them. His ogre's blood aflame as he raised thick bladed dao over his head, chopped down spears haft as if it were thin springwood. He laughed, as the enemy rider slowed their chase.

Enkhtuya's archers fired a second volley. Closer to threat. Some horses taking wounds. One even tripped in the dirt and cried out its agony as its body crashed into the earth and its rider was crushed under saddle.

They sounded a horn. Regroup. Regroup. The blasts called out to the ears of the veteran killers of the Black Shields.
 
It was bloody fucking pandemonium. A staple of any scrap that the Third and Fourth were involved, though for differing reasons. Cato and his lot were proper degenerates; assassins, thieves, rogue mages. They lacked the regimented nature of the First and the Second. Shoulder to shoulder combat on an open field had never been their calling. Oh, they could hold their own in a fight but gods knew it damned hectic. It was the midst of this chaos that an irregular cohort like the Third could truly thrive.

Cato caught an unsuspecting merc in the side with his blade, quickly following up with a second strike. They had dropped near a third of their foes during the initial ambush but that hardly made the odds even. The 'Shields had been severely outnumbered from the onset, as they oft tended to be. Many would have simply walked away from the vendetta but Cato didn't have that luxury. The crazy bastards in the Third could be oddly sentimental about these things. They'd fucking shiv him if he had tried to wash his hands of all this.

"Nails!" he called out to the other mercenary who was currently poking holes in some poor bastard. "How many bloody times do I need to tell you stop fooling about?" There wasn't anyone in the 'Shields better at getting information out of a person, but she was thrice-mad. Scared half em of shitless, Cato included. Still, this wasn't a situation where they could afford to play the usual games.

The mercenary captain muttered a litany of obscenities before getting back to the knifework.


Khulan Altan
 
  • Dwarf
Reactions: Khulan Altan
It was as the horses realligned their formation, that the hogs of the Bloody 4th turned and gave charge. A volley of arrows from Enkhtuya's mounted archers peppered the enemy horseman. Much of the missile fire pinged off plate and shield. But one and two and three horses fell. Some pulled down by the weight of their riders, dead or unseated by the seeking head of steel tipped arrows.

"Give no quarter!" Khulan roared mad beneath the shade of his lamellar helm. The boars squealed proud, and walls of muscle crashed into the more fragile forms of the horses. Spears shafts splintered as armored boar-skulls rammed forth. Tusks gouged long angry lines across the sides of steads and heavy lance punched through armor.

It was utter bedlam.

Mud and blood sprayed up as the field was torn across by hooves and trotter alike. And in the crush, the horses stood no chance against the goring boars. Riders were knocked down, beasts trampled over them. Fear spread across Karlar's men as the Bloody 4th did their bloody work. And what cowards gave route were hunted down and feathered by Enkthuya's skirmishers.

Cato
 
They had killed scores in the initial ambush, and more in the chaos after. The problem was very much to do with those who remained. Clearly Karlar's men had a few capable sergeants in their lot. Their foes had already begun to reorganize, no doubt realizing that they still had the numbers. Cato would be fucked before he let them get into a proper formation.

"Sticks!" Cato barked as he spotted one of his squad mages. "Give me something over there, don't give a damn what!" The mercenary captain pointed at the nearest group of Karlar's men. The mage gave his boss nothing more than a lackadaisical shrug before eventually turning in the appropriate direction. Cato began to feel the ground rumble ahead of him. He watched as the ground below Karlar's men shifted and two twin waves of dirt and earth rose to swallow them whole.

Except they waves never crashed. Cato looked towards his squad made in exasperation. "Sorry cap, blew most of it up it front." The mercenary leader knew damned well that was the truth but didn't have the time to press the matter. At least Sticks had managed to split the group, if only for a moment. Cato sheathed his shortsword as he began to run towards his foe. The mercenary captain began to focus before drawing his hand of the length of his other blade. Closer inspection would reveal that the blade was coated in the dull-blue aura of telekinetic energy.

Cato waited until he twenty feet away and then stopped in his tracks. He wasted not time in pulling his blade back and then slashing horizontally through the air. The mercenary had the satisfaction as just barely being able to see the confusion on their faces. Moments later near-translucent wave of energy slammed into their sides. Cato watched them smash into the earthen wave and crumple to the ground. He allowed himself a satisfied nod. Been awhile since he'd done something that fancy.

The others would have to be dealt with the hard way.


Khulan Altan