Open Chronicles Regicidal Tendencies

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Sullivan

Might Makes Right
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Source: Ellen Clarke

Sullivan lowered his massive figure into the oversized chair. It was plush, firm, and called the ornate windowless room home. The marbled flooring was clean enough that it’s white surface reflected and amplified the sconces which illuminated the confined place. Once comfortably settled the well-fed nobleman stared at his faithful attendant.

”So, a few peasants are upset. I still don’t understand all of the fuss you’re making.”

Carlisle shook his head. He’d long served as the advisor and executor of the Weiroon estate. He was loyal. Reliable. And most importantly he wasn’t a complete idiot. He cleared his throat and stated calmly, “sir, it was a few peasants. After the events of last week, well, it’s become something much larger.”

A smile crept across Sullivan’s broad face. With glee he said, ”well, yes, but that was necessary.” The glib expression on his face matched the overwhelming joy in his brown eyes. He had been dispatched to Vel Uri, a remote township not far from the Cortosi coast, in order to deal with a famine that had caused public unrest. The baron of Weiroon saw to it that the mayor was executed for his inability to deal with the troubles and he had crucified a few of the supposed leaders of the peasant revolt.

Then, last week, a group of peasants sat outside the former mayor’s lavish estate and yelled for justice after a child had starved to death. Sullivan gave a rousing speech to the gathering crowd, extolling the virtues of Anirian society and insisting that additional food rations were on the way. When the rabble screamed out that he was a liar he had his cohort of soldiers gather up the most vocal of the peasants. They were tortured for a few hours and then tied to stakes and burnt in a large funeral pyre. It was only fair.

“Right. I’ll level with you sir, some of the soldiers we brought from the capital have defected. The peasants outside have swelled to a number that our remaining soldiers cannot contain. We can barely keep the doors barricaded and I have reason to believe a group of the commoners have pooled what little funds they have to put a bounty on your life,” Carlisle paused to clear his throat. Hoping to allow the reality to set in for his superior. He spoke once more to relay his plan, “sir, at this stage I believe the best course of action is to whisk you out of the manor in secret and get back to Vel Anir. I do not know how much longer our contingency of soldiers can keep you safe.”

Sullivan Weiroon rose to his feet. His back straightened, his top hat adjusted, he spoke only after staring down his house steward for an uncomfortable amount of time. ”Carlisle. You are of lowly birth. You provide me with an answer that is, quite obnoxiously, from the mindset of someone of low birth. We will not leave. We will not abandon the township. I have a plan.”

Unbeknownst to Carlisle the second-in-command of House Weiroon had brought a bit of a guarantee with him. A dreadlord with a particular set of talents. He was not fearful of some wild mob and he felt confident that whatever paltry sum the commoners had gathered would be far too small to hire any assassin who possessed the slightest level of competence.
 

Callarn Osfort

Restless Revolutionary
Dreadlords
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36
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Not quite a poor man, not quite a rich man, not quite a free man, not quite a pawn. Callarn felt like an impostor, even now that on his shoulders rested the hopes of a people that extolled his every step and word. A generalized crisis, is how the once Dreadlord had put it, wrought about by a system that rewarded ambition over compassion for the other. With what legitimacy did the High Council and their puppet king rule, then? That of the whip, the lash? Those were to be answered in kind. Doubly so, when they became noose and pyre, and even more now that there were children fighting over chaff lost in mud. That should simply not be, not in any state worth preserving. And much less defending, taking up arms against kin and ilk! Those that of their own volition chose Vel Anir, did so at the cost of not only Vel Uri but also every other town, city and hamlet; every beggar, widow and even themselves. The downtrodden were not meant to rebel! Or to make martyrs of their losses, demons of these nobles and burghers, and mount the lopped heads of the King and Council on stakes for all the world to see! And under such laws, how could there ever be justice?

"Thus always to tyrants! In their ashes we sow our future!"

Callarn's voice was a rasp by the end. It was the bite of the cold dusk air, the liquor to dull the pain, the emotion of being swept up by his own speech, of seeing his words have an effect. But his rallying cry carried. Vel Uri answered. The starved mob of many came down upon manor in a storm of sickles, hammers, bread knives and torches. Lives were lost, irreplaceable, but the frenzy kept blazing the hearts. The people fought savagely against soldiers and guards, took up their arms, looted their bodies, and of the house made sure to destroy what they couldn't plunder. Regardless, it would not be enough.

Mounted on a Weiroon horse, Callarn galloped without a saddle and with his hand clung to the wispy mane. It seemed that wherever he went, more followed. Not necessarily the strongest, the bravest, and he feared for what would happen should he die while the battle still raged. He hoped, with heart flaring with determination and a pit of cold growing in his stomach, to have done right. He was starting to see them as a wave of gristle, hundreds that would die because of men such as him.
 
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Sullivan

Might Makes Right
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The screams grew louder. Sullivan was starting to regret a few things. Namely, that he hadn't brought a larger bottle of scotch on this journey but the smaller contingency of troops he had brought was also a bit concerning. He began to worry that he'd likely have to use his ace in the hole sooner than he originally had planned. As brave of a face as he had put on to Carlisle the reality was that Sullivan Weiroon felt something he hadn't felt since childhood. Something that gnawed at him now, that tended to dominate dreams and cloud judgment.

Fear.

His eldest brother Sebastian was the head of House Weiroon and while Sebastian sat at the capital and likely dined on a decadently roasted quail or spoonfuls of tiramisu the younger brother, Sullivan, was out here in this waste of a town with his life at risk. Now he had his closest advisor telling him to wade through the mud and filth to try and slink away like some kind of terrified rodent. And the fear in his massive belly kept eating away at him. Making him wonder if maybe Carlisle was right. Maybe he should disguise himself, try and sneak out the back, make haste for the Anirian capital.

"Carlisle, my boy, this situation's looking worse by the minute. We still have archers on the roof?" he questioned with an empty scotch glass in one hand while the other hand was cupped against his ear. He could've sworn he was hearing the chants of praising tyrants or some other such nonsense.

His steward nodded solemnly. Understanding that his patriarch was going to make a tactical blunder regardless of his advice. But, he chose to offer it anyway. "Yes sire, we have crossbowmen on the roof of the mayoral estate. Give the word and we can have them open fire. However, I worry that will just throw this mob into a frenzy and-"

Sullivan's mouth opened, twisting his goatee in a strange manner, "perfect! Give the word. Cut down their numbers, thin their front. Once the rabble sees a few dozen of the protestors impaled by arrows they'll all start to disperse."

Upon the tops of the roof the archers of House Weiroon loaded their crossbows. They took aim and unleased the first barrage. Seconds later screams of pandemonium took over the scene.
 
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Callarn Osfort

Restless Revolutionary
Dreadlords
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The carnage outside was made into beauty, flames and shades of fighting men became prismatic souls through the stained glass. Callarn thought himself a monster, and yet wished to be made of stronger mettle. It was hard to bear witness to the noise. Still he had to hear over the screams of pain and the panting of his steed, the blood dribbling from under his skin. Lightheadedness would help to focus, he picked at the splinters in his neck. Eyes shut. He kept the gallop, heard the grinding and releasing of many springs. Cranks. Snapping.

Crossbows.

Many, fired at a good pace, at a height and distance. Those were trained retainers, several cuts above these farmhands and widows Callarn was letting die so carelessly. Only, he cared for them deeply. Cold panic had seized his hands, made his posture sloppy. He leaned too hard on spent horse and both came crashing against a pillar. Stupid mistake.

The horse squirmed, neighed, trashed and shattered laid and broken on the porcelain tiles of the floor. Instinct pervaded Callarn. In his crawl to the braying horse with the jutting leg bone his rapier was drawn high. The middle of the forehead, was where he pierced, just above the eye. He could hear the snapping inside, but it ringed hollow in him. The blade, a broken cruel thing projecting little less than a foot of fine sharp silver, would bring deliverance all the same.

Callarn stood on his crippled leg, forcing a march through door after door. He was too fast for those that followed him to catch up, but they were frightened by his handiwork all the same. Every body the former dreadlord left behind showed three, four cuts at most, yet none could fathom the strength needed for them to be opened so.

Callarn hacked through the last door, and his dead open eyes met Sullivan. He was drenched, drenched, in blood. Most of it his.
 
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Sullivan

Might Makes Right
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Sullivan’s mouth cracked wide at the calamity outside. Bolts fluttering through the cold air, screams of agony and panic, and the sense that now things would be fine. Soon the rabble would disperse or he’d order another volley from the men on the roof. Either way, he had succeeded, as he always did, at accomplishing what he was here to do. The uprising would be quelled, grain from overseas would arrive before long, and the people could resume subsisting off the gruel they were owed. Vel Uri was in good hands.

”Carlisle, have the cooks put on a pot of tea. I’d request they roast that boar over an open flame. Let’s allow the townfolk the courtesy of at least smelling what a good meal resembles,” he said with a hearty chuckle. ”You know Carlisle, this is why the council sent me here. They don’t want a populace that feels it can make demands every time food gets a bit scarce. They don’t need a farm town that succumbs under its own weight every time the crop fails. What the people of Vel Uri, nay all of Vel Anir, need is authority and the rule of law so that it can,” a door rushed open, interrupting the Weiroon noble’s monologue. Callarn’s determined eyes stared into Sullivan’s proud brown eyes.

Carlisle stood aghast, backing up towards the wall. For his part, the obese nobleman cracked a smile, ”my, my, you’re awfully dirty. I don’t believe I invited you to my estate, young man.” The boy was covered in blood, dirt, and grim. He looked to be just a few years past his teens.

In the corner of the room some of the extravagant curtains twisted, moved really. Pointing towards Sullivan Weiroon as some unseen force seemed to draw nearer.

”I find myself in a generous mood lad.” He gazed over at Carlisle and then gestured towards the intruder, ”seems I’ve got a bit of a fan Carlisle. Perhaps he came to stay for dinner?” A chuckle emanated through his thick torso and out of his gaping mouth. ”Now! What are you here to discuss, boy?”

Sullivan looked down upon the dreadlord who had barged through the door with vitriol. It was not only impolite to arrive unannounced but in such a terrible looking state? Common born folk really were the worst kind of pests.
 

Melusine Flarell

Elbion College
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24
As they arrived, Melusine winced inwardly, having overheard a little of the description of events, and sympathizing with the commoners at least a little, on behalf of her biological human mother, whom from what she had been told had been nothing special other than her friendliness. She had been a little on edge ever since Ser Gavin Halbert had told her about the letter he'd received, but she wisely tried her best to keep her opinions to herself. Being a knight, in general, wasn't supposed to be about her opinions. If Gavin had said they would help Sullivan, so be it. Still, she had to wonder if there had ever been a time in Gavin's life when he had fought for a cause he at least wasn't entirely clear on. Uprising might have been a bad move on the part of the peasants, but she could understand the impatience that came with wanting to get something one needed or was owed.

Maybe she was the wrong kind of person for a task like this. Fighting on the side of right and on the side of the law weren't necessarily always the same thing. Besides, if she had wanted to help to some degree to enforce rules, she would probably have stayed in Oban.

In short, she was here because Gavin was. And in that sense, perhaps she owed him her loyalty, and that at least helped put her in the right frame of mind for the present. She just hoped her face could remain emotionless.
 
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Ser Gavin Halbert

The Lion of Oban
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Gavin held the letter in front of him eyes squinting at its contents. His eyes have lost some of its sight over the years, the words began to blur whenever he got closer to it but Gavin managed to make out the gist of it. An acquaintance: Sullivan requested his help in dealing with an uprising. A look of grim determination was etched on The Lion of Oban's face, he's dealt with uprisings many times in the past mostly for nobles. Unfortunately the uprisings were usually the fault of the nobility due to their excess taxes or abusing the people they were supposed to look after.

He could tell that his squire: Melusine Flarell was just as uncomfortable with the whole situation. Gavin couldn't blame her already he can hear the screams of agony ahead of them. They arrived too late, blood has been shed. "Keep calm my very young squire," Gavin advised his face shrouded in a brown hood. "There are times where you want to help the innocent but they refuse you even assume that you are the enemy. I know you mean well but this......"

Gavin sighed his tone of voice was shaking with sadness. "Is a delicate situation what we need to do is to minimize the casualties as much as possible."

He preferred to be no casualties but Sullivan struck first it seems. Gavin began to approach the embellished building surrounded by the impoverished buildings. A drizzle of rain began to fall pattering against the blood stained floor. Many villagers began to retreat from the volley bolts that descended upon them. A despondent Gavin watched as crying man held his son who was struck by a bolt. A woman gave a loud wail as her eye was pierced and blood began pouring out. She was helped by an old man and his daughter.

"Welcome to Vel Uri," Gavin thought sullenly approaching the Crossbowmen their weapons drawn at Gavin and Melusine.

"HALT!" The man shouted. "You are not to enter!"

"I was sent an invitation!" Gavin held out his letter which had Sullivan's seal on it. "I am to see Lord Sullivan in quelling this uprising!"

The guards looked at each before letting them both in. Gavin entered the building and looked around seeing Sullivan appearing jolly. "Sullivan," Gavin said. "I am here for your mission."