• Graded • The Ripper

Nightshade Eld and Paplo investigate a murder.

Rising from the stony plateau overlooking the rivers and plains of the western continent, and growing wealthy from the gem stones pulled from this same rocky soil, Etzos is a bastion of independence, eagerly spreading its belief that man should rule Idalos, not be servants of the vain Immortals who nearly destroyed it. But can the different factions set aside their agendas long enough to see this through?

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• Graded • The Ripper

Postby Kovic » Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:29 pm

Image
26th of Zi’da, 716
22nd Break


It was like Paradise. There he was, a worm born in the mud, evolved, improved. No more bound to squirm and twist in the soil, or live underground like the creature he was. Now, Kovic got to fly. His wide open wings made him glide in between clouds, avoiding the puffy obstacles with dexterity, for he wished not to crash on top of them just yet. Instead, he wanted to experience the winds, to feel the warmth of the sun increasing the further up he flew. Even the birds envied him, for they flew below him, unable to reach his current heights. The seagulls, declared enemies of Kovic, hid as he surfed the currents, for every black feather of his wings roared whenever they flapped, and even hunger shivered as the vulture of vultures dominated the skies.

Kovic laughed and smiled, even if there was nobody around him, even if he was not portraying any character. He laughed and smiled because he was happy, perhaps for the first time in his short life. No more characters were necessary, for Kovic was finally complete.

“I’m done,” announced a voice behind him.
Kovic was buried deep down, and Paplo, the character, was reborn. Back into reality, the male found himself panting and coated in sweat. Looking back, he smiled.
“Did you have fun?” he asked.
“I did,” said his peer, laughing. “Come on.”
Paplo stood up, a hand running over his bearded features. He armed himself with a cloth and began cleaning himself up, eyes fixed on his companion.
“Are you sure you don’t want some coin?” asked the male, whom was dressing himself up.
“I told you what I wanted,” said Paplo, dressing up as well.
“Alright, alright.” The male moved towards one of his drawers, and from it he extracted a small pouch. He opened it, and two small pills flew straight into his palm. “Here it is. One of these should be enough. Complete blackout for eight breaks or so, and partial or complete memory loss for the half the trial.”
“Partial or complete?” asked Paplo. He did not like uncertainty.
“It varies on the individual. Use the second pill and it’ll definitely be complete.”
“Good.”

As Paplo left the individual’s home, he was met with the usual cold of Zi’da, which swept upon the Outer Perimeter of Etzos. Outside the walls there were few barriers to halt the midnight breeze, and his teeth started clattering almost immediately. He walked for a while, and eventually reached one of the few locations that apparently never stopped working.

The Citizen’s Market was very active both during the day and during the night. In the day, one could find almost anything in the various stalls in the plaza, be it spices, foods, clothes or tools needed to carry out one’s profession. However, during the night, what was once a standard market became a place for delinquents and undesirables to gather – at least, morally speaking. Mercenaries, assassins for hire, prostitutes and the few slavers that passed through Etzos all gathered there, feasting in the night like worms in the mud. Having visited the location a few trials back, Paplo somewhat enjoyed strolling through the dubious crowds that moved down the frozen soil.

There was a slight anomaly on the night, for a crowd had gathered behind a building, worry and anger present in everyone. After making his way towards the improvised circle, Paplo was witness to a body. A female, human, laying dead in the soil, brutally murdered. Each of her limbs had been shattered by the articulations, something quite obvious for her lower legs and forearms all bent in unnatural ways. Her torso had been split open by what Paplo imagined was some sort of blade. Her head, and all her digits, were missing, amputated and apparently not found.
“It’s the Ripper,” announced a male from the crowd. “I told you we hadn’t caught him.”
“I bet it’s one of those cults,” said someone else. “We should close the borders and avoid all these Immortal-worshipping cunts from coming here.”
“Has anyone called the guards?” asked some female.
“Like they can be bothered,” replied someone else. “They’ll most likely come in the morning, bag the body and toss it in the river.”
“I hear they chop down the bodies and use it as fertilized for the fields.”
“My aunt told me they feed them to the refugees coming from the south.”

Paplo lost interest fairly quickly. A loose murderer was something he wasn’t concerned about, and the desperate call of attention that was the body announced how unprofessional said individual must be. Leaving bodies behind was evidence, and that was far from optimal if one wished to escape the authorities. The ego of the mortals was a great weakness Paplo did not share. Nonetheless, he remained on the spot, listening to wild theories and gossips coming from the ruffians, for it was all they really did.

Nobody seemed to care about the body, for Etzos did not care either.
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The Ripper

Postby Nightshade Eld » Thu Jan 19, 2017 2:54 pm

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Eventually the guards came to see the corpse and possibly hunt down the creator of such a scene. It was not right to say that nobody cared about the body. There were some who with aghast expressions spoke of how horrible it all was. Gossips and the weak hearted turned away to speak with each other about how terrible it was and what a shame that a life had to be taken. They cared, oh they most certainly cared about the corpse. They cared that they had finally found some decent entertainment, that they could spread rumors and have fun messing with other people. To most it was just another fact of live, eventually you would die of old age if something didn't get you first. Most people didn't believe that anything would get them first, so they were untouched by the fear that they might be the next ones to meet the end of whatever weapon, be it steel or organic, had ended yet another life young. Mortals truly were full of themselves, always thinking that it would never happen to them. The ones who could see the fact it might be them next went insane with that knowledge and others turned away from their madness and fears.

"It'll never be us, why should be care?" No one ever said it but those were the words that festered in the back of every mind.

"Why should I put my neck on the line for someone who's already dead? I have a family I need to care for!" That ignorant train of thought was exactly what allowed things like this to happen.

The crowd was parted and waved off by the coming guard. "Alright, enough gawking. Go about your business!" The leader said trying banish the group which only seem to grow larger. Eventually those who did not actually care grew bored by their little games. They had better things to do like taking care of themselves and only themselves. They had to make sure they always came out on top after all. So little compassion, such distance from the horrible things of the world, they couldn't see it and they never would since even if they were next it would be over too fast for them to learn a lesson out of it. Malicious, self serving, that's all that people had become over the years. Could they really be blamed though? Living in a world like the one they belonged to, it was often hard to scrape by on what little you could get. The rich had become the rich by playing the game with it's actual rules, stab everyone in the back and make sure you come out on top. Those who played by the fake rules created by the powerful to stay in power were the ones who continually got screwed in the arse.

It's important to never forget there is always an exception. To every rule, every fact, ever little piece of knowledge in life, there is always the exception.

That very exception moved like water curving through the people who moved out of her way. They dared not to touch her, to them she was like poison or a horrible disease that would spread to them if they got too close. It was easy to see the scorn in their eyes as they looked at her proud form. There was no piece of clothing in the world that could hide her shameful pride, the mark of her breeding. Beautiful and powerful large black wings which scared those of little and big minds alike. She was different, strange enough to make the average person fear her for her oddity as well as for the legends spread about those like herself. The powerful feared her because she was strong. Brave, noble, elegant and without worry for self. She was dangerous to their little perch because she had the strength to literally and metaphorically fly up to them and knock them out of their tower. Anything like that was met with scorn in order to keep a creature that could be great from becoming a grand and marvelous sign for that which was still good in the world twisted by mortal and immortal hand alike. Could not a similar thing be said about the immortals who fear mortal kind? Within that scorn however there were sparks of praise, little glints of kindness, glory and trust earned through seasons of hard work for the hopes and dreams of the lower class.

It could be said as a general rule that people cared most about themselves, that they were the most important thing in their own world. And to that rule she was the exception.

"What's going on?" Night asked one of the guards as her eyes trailed the body of the corpse. One of the guards leaned towards her and whispered words of both false and fact, for even those who were suppose to speak only truth sometimes got confused by rumors. "I see," she said quietly moving towards the body. "May I?" She asked the leader of the group of guards. He nodded and she kneeled down next to the body trying to gleam some amount of understanding. "Do you have any idea what happened? I might have the free time to look into it," she mused quietly. Free time was a bit of an understatement. There had been prior attacks by the assailant so dubbed the Ripper. The altruistic half breed had of course taken an interest in the events and had already thought about trying to hunt down the killer. This however was the first time she'd actually had the pleasure of seeing one of the bodies, all her prior encounters had been little more than the rumors of Etzos spread by those with too much time on their hands. Night who had far too little time to bother with something like this, especially considering she had to keep herself alive. In her mind others always came first though, self preservation be damned. She would drop all the time she needed to if it meant saving a life.
Common ~ Ith'Ession ~ Lorien


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The Ripper

Postby Kovic » Sun Jan 22, 2017 8:41 am

Image
What little interest Paplo held for the scene resurfaced once the avian entered the scene. Of all creatures, it was she the one he held the biggest interest for. With her proud gait and her glorious wings, whatever envy Paplo could gather was immediately pointed at her. His hand instinctively reached for the makeshift pouch in one of his pockets, where two pills awaited to see the female’s insides. Regardless of pacifism, an expression of distaste came to the male’s features whilst he watched, the female quickly taking control of the situation and most of the crowd’s attention. Paplo, on the other hand, remained just one more face in the background.
“Nice to see you, Nightshade,” he announced, voice raising as he stepped forth from the crowd, eyes starting towards Eld. “Even if the circumstances are not so pleasant.”
After a brief and coy smile, Paplo glanced towards the guards, whom were about to push him off the crime scene. None of the faces were recognized, and thus the individuals present in his recruitment were absent. He had to win their affection.
“Judging by the damage done to the corpse, I’d imagine this Ripper does not practice his torture in the open. Breaking a limb as such is bound to fuel some desperate screams, don’t you think? Perhaps you should begin your investigation in the nearest medical facilities. It is unlikely the body has crossed the city wall---”
“Back off, pal. This is official Etzori business.” Said one of the guards, whom started pushing Paplo back into the crowd.
“Yet the Ripper is still not caught,” replied the Mortalborn, offering a bit of resistance. “Allow me to help, please.”
The guard doubted for a moment, for the male before him was rather persuasive. Nonetheless, he did not let go.
“I’ve worked with the guard before. The winged warrior can vouch for me,” added Paplo, eyes shooting towards the female.

The guard looked over his shoulder as well, an unspoken query being placed upon Nightshade. The guard seemed somewhat annoyed at his own gesture, for asking the permission of a filthy mixed blood humiliated his own pride as a man. As such, he violently pushed Paplo into the crowd.
“I said back off, all of you!”
Chaos erupted once Paplo was shoved onto the mass of witnesses, the male falling to his rear and taking a few of the witnesses with himself. Exclamations of both disgust and outrage escaped the gathered crowd. Paplo stood up, helping those he had taken with him in his fall back to their feet, and offering quick apologies to each and every last one of them. Shooting a last glance towards Eld, Paplo walked away.

Winning the female’s affections would be easier if they were to work together, and unlike in the previous occasion, this once Nightshade had to depend on Paplo. As such, he had to hijack the investigation and make significant progress so that she begged for his help. As he walked away, he came across some teary features that stared towards the gathered crowd, woman hugging a gruff-looking male for comfort. Pain and grief spoke of the relationship she had shared with the victim.
“Excuse me,” whispered Paplo, his tone soft and non-threatening, honeyed with emotion. “Did you know the victim?”
“Yes,” replied the female after wiping a tears off. “That’s Rosamund. We used to be childhood friends.”
“I’m sorry for your loss,” replied Paplo, offering a sad smile. “Can you tell me a bit about her?”
“Why would we tell you anything, you?” spoke the male, perhaps her husband or significant other, unaffected by grief.
“Because I care about what happened, unlike the guards. How many other victims has the Ripper claimed?” asked Paplo, using the question as an argument. In truth, he didn’t know a thing about the Ripper. “If they won’t try to solve this, then I will try. I dislike living in fear.”
“We weren’t friends anymore,” replied the female before her man could intervene. “I never got the chance to forgive her for… for…”
“Do you know where she lives?” interrupted Paplo. Listening to the mortals cry was extremely annoying.
“She has a small cottage by the butcher shop,” replied the male, whom hugged the female tightly, muffling her speech and covering her ears. Protection from emotional pain? Such a noble man. “There’s a broken cart in the front, so you can’t miss it. Now leave.”
“That is very helpful, thank you, and I’m sorry once again.”

Now, Paplo looked over his shoulder towards Nightshade. Offering the information learned would only lose his own leverage over the situation, and so sharing it was not viable. Instead, he began walking forth into the night, setting his course towards the butcher shop he used to stalk in the day, for the smells of fresh and bloody meat were sometimes as good as the meal itself. He made sure to advance with haste, for if he was able to find out about her residence, then Nightshade would too.
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The Ripper

Postby Nightshade Eld » Sun Jan 29, 2017 12:04 pm

Image
Night turned when she heard a voice raise itself above that of the crowd. She found the all too familiar face of Paplo. She listened as he spoke before the guard tried to get rid of him. "Wa-" she tired to get some kind of word in but the guard was annoying and loud. Paplo continued to try and defend himself but the guard didn't seem to care. Even when he turned to Night it seemed to be a hollow gesture as he was already pushing Paplo away. "What he heck man? Are you trying to make this harder? He sounded like he knew what he was talking about," she hissed her eyes narrowing to a degree.

The guard just huffed and shook his head. "We don't need him. What can a random citizen offer that the guard can't?" His pompous attitude was the kind that tended to get people killed. Given the situation she didn't bring that up but her mind boiled with the though.

"Am I not a random citizen you people have taken a fondness of hiring?" She asked with a tilt of her head. A redness rushed the cheeks of the guard as he looked at her. The comment seemed to strike a nerve and guard got in his face.

"I am not one of the stupid assholes who keeps bringing you back," he grabbed her by the collar dragging her face right into his. "I do not need you, we do not need you, be grateful that you have the chance to keep coming back or you would be very hungry and very poor you little piece of whorish shit. Now do you job and get back to work," the guard snarled finally taking his disgusting and meaty paws off of Night. She hated when people became entitled just because they were members of the guard.

She turned towards Paplo once the guard had let go of her. Luckily they made eye contact. She mouthed a silent 'I'm sorry' to him before she turned back to her work. The guard be damned, the man could have been helpful. Certainly she would get yelled at if she tried to get his help though, and that was something she couldn't handle right now. She needed to focus all her strength and attention of the task at hand. Perhaps they would cross paths again but for now she had to find everything out about the killer on her own.

"So can anyone tell me about common themes happening between these killings? Murders as far as I know usually tend to have a theme like the way the body is killed or who they kill," Night said asking one of the kinder guards of the group.

"Right. Here's what we've collected so far. All of the victims have been female, prostitutes at that. We're not sure if it has to do with taste or the ease that the murderer can catch them. This woman is the fifth and all of them have been in a very similar state to this one. The victims usually go missing the night before the murder and are from the outer wall, usually they are also found in the outer wall. It's usually 14 trials between bodies," the guard said listing off all the information they had. It was a bit choppy and there were holes in the information, but it would have to be enough for right now.

"So she's fresh," Night muttered looking a little closer at the corpse. It had been cut right open and was completely mangled beyond all belief. "Disgusting," she said with a wrinkle of her nose. "Alright, I'm setting out," she said looking at the guard.

"Where?" One of them asked looking back down at the body and then up at her. The ass guard just snorted. "Good," he muttered under his breath thinking that no one would hear.

"To the outer wall prostitutes," she said with a grin. She was taking a bit of a different approach to the situation. If she found someone who knew the woman then she might be able to get an idea of what was going on.

Kovic was going to have to try a little harder than that. Night wasn't easy to trick.
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The Ripper

Postby Kovic » Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:37 pm

Image
The previously described domicile was located at last. Despite no actual description of the building itself, the details about the butchery and the broken cart served to pinpoint the location of the dead prostitute’s home. The building was simplistic and somewhat small, made of wood and thus cheap to rent. Maladies were present around the cottage, be it in the form of broken windows badly repaired with planks, a small and yet unkept parcel trapped between a rotten wooden fence. In truth, the condition of the cottage was somewhat similar to those that surrounded it, for this whole section was miserable in its totality. Even the butcher shop lacked any sort of grace in its upkeep, and even less in the poor and crooked architecture that composed it. Were it not for the obvious sign that depicted a cleaver looming over a cow’s head, it would’ve passed on as just another of these hovels.

Paplo moved past the fence until he reached the door. The lack of any light he interpreted as a lack of inhabitants within the cottage, and his hand reached to the knob. Upon turning it, he discovered it was locked. As if anyone would try to break in this dump, though the male. A low sigh escaped him before he used more forceful methods of entry, which were composed of inexperienced kicks, pathetic shoulder rams, and pick locking via stone. Despite his repeated failures, nobody in the somewhat reduced public interrupted, for Paplo still stood confident.

Suddenly, the door opened.
“What do you think you’re doing?” yelled the balding tenant.

Male, human, mature, average height, below-average weight. Balding hair and balding hairs combined with a variety of wrinkles spoke of his age, the damaged skin spoke a story of employment under the sun. Loose clothing, below-average in quality and composed of hemp spoke of his deteriorated social status. Damaged poise, restless eyes and fidgety damaged fingers betrayed his dubiousness, yet it also hinted at the buried rage. Submissive or not, the male was lively, and thus he was immediately branded with a dominant personality.

“Knocking at your door,” answered Paplo, standing firm and staring back with quite the determination. His whole body language had transformed from a regular citizen to that of a powerful solder. This was only confirmed once Paplo threw a punch directly onto the male’s nose. “Bitch.”
The male was struck indeed, and even if the unexpected fist barely held experience, it just so happened that it landed quite accurately upon his nose, which began bleeding whilst the male covered it with both hands. “What the...”
Before he could finish his sentence, Paplo had already stepped within the house and slammed the door shut behind him. “Shut your mouth,” he ordered. “Did you do it?”
“Wha- What are you talking about!?” yelled the male, blindly retreating back.
“The whore, Rosamund! Did you kill her?”
“Wait-”
Paplo needed to apply further psychological pressure. Due to his lack of a weapon, and the haste needed in the situation, he armed himself with his own shoe in a blink of an eye, and used it to strike at the man’s features. Were one to ignore the shoe being wielded by an arm rather than a leg, it would’ve qualified as quite the good kick.
“Sto--” Again, before managing to finish his words, the male was interrupted, for now he stumbled upon the ‘relief’ bucket, which tripped him back and made him crash on the uneven wooden ground somewhat harshly. “Please, I…”
“You murdered her! You cut her open like a pig! How could you?” said Paplo, punting the male with his shoed foot. “How could you!?”

The tenant began crying at last. Be it of pain, of frustration, or of pure confusion, his tears seemed to bring a halt to the unexpected beating. Some words were muttered, yet their sounds mingled with those of his wails and thus nobody could understand him but himself.

Whilst this happened, Paplo took the time not only to slip his foot within his ill-fitting shoe, but also to inspect the cottage from within. Again, the improvements were little from the sight of the outside. Scarce furniture, uneven floors, and a fireplace whose chimney seemed rather blocked, for the smell of smoke was strong. A double bed with stained sheets revealed the biggest piece of information.
“She’s your wife,” confirmed Paplo outloud. “And she’s dead, for the Ripper got her. Hold your sobs and tell me everything about her, for I plan on avenging her.”

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The Ripper

Postby Nightshade Eld » Mon Feb 13, 2017 2:43 pm

Image
The outer wall wasn't a safe place, but it was somehow comfortable to Night. There was a freedom that the inner walls didn't have. Yet there was also the danger of attack and murder. This was the kind of place that the half breed belonged in all honesty, fighting to protect those too weak to protect themselves. She walked at a brisk pace as the world moved past, she'd been able to find out about a group of prostitutes. Some asking around had produced the idea that it was the same group the dead woman had belong too. Down an alley Night found a group of about four that were doing their best to try and catch whatever attention they could without getting the bad kind of attention. All were dressed up with makeup trying to appeal to a sense of beauty that they would never be able to achieve. Most were here because of circumstance, Night felt a small amount of pity for them. But pity was an emotion best used as an insult, so she squashed the feeling.

"Excuse me, but could I talk to one of you?" Night asked. The prudish virgin felt extremely awkward walking up to a group of whores. It didn't matter if she wanted to talk to them about a murder, she felt so weird walking up to women like this and trying to hold a conversation. They looked at Night with cold and judgmental eyes. She wasn't like them, she also wasn't like their typical customers, meaning she couldn't possibly hold any benefit to them. The oldest glanced at the younger girls. She was past her prime and beauty, it was obvious that she didn't get much work. That however seemed to cause her a little sympathy so she walked over.

"Listen sweetheart, if you're looking to try and join us this lif-" the whore started but was quickly cut off by Night.

"I'm here to talk about a recent murder," she said making unshakable eye contact with the older woman. The woman's expression became unreadable. There was something between shock, fear, and anger that quickly ran its course through her eyes.

"You're here to ask about her. Why should I tell you? It don't mean nothing to me, I had no connections to the woman, she didn't mean nothing to me. Make it worth my while," the woman said as her expression became twisted. She was trying to disassociated herself from the incident, but at the same time she was trying to get money for information. That wasn't how things were going to work.

"Not worth anything? So you don't mind if you're next? You don't mind if you get slowly town apart, your body getting destroyed right before your eyes in the most painful way imaginable. You don't care?" Night spat with venom. This whore was making her angry. It wasn't so much the disrespectful attitude as much as it was the aloof air she gave off in regards to a murder. All of that anger Night put into her words. Apparently she hit the right spot because the whore's eyes widened and she shook her head slightly.

"Come with me, it's not safe to talk about it out here," the whore said grabbing Night by the wrist and leading her away. The pair moved down alley after alley as they tried to find a place deemed safe enough by the whore. "Alright, I'll tell you what I know. Last night she was going out on a job. We girls have a usual inn that was hit up, we're regulars and we get half rates on the rooms. It severs alcohol and beds, that's enough for us to call it home away from home. She was going out on a job when a really strange man showed up and started chatting with her. I didn't think much of it, so I didn't get a good look at him. I just know he was real strange and seemed like he was hiding something. That's really all I know. If you want to find out more then you best head for the inn that we use. It's just a little ways down the road from our spot," the woman told Night as the half breed tried to process all the information.

"Alright, that's as good a lead as any. I'll head down to that Inn and see what I can dig up," the half breed said.

"Please. Do your best. Protect my girls," the whore said. The oldest of course seemed to have a mother like sentiment for the rest of her group. Night sighed and nodded solemnly.

Night retraced her steps with the older woman and came to the small group which easily welcomed the old matron back. Night slipped off with the directions she was given in mind. The inn really was easy enough to find. One of the group was already heading inside with what she assumed was a client. The man who had the woman twirled around his arm seemed to have no shame, his eyes glinted ravenously as he gazed at her. It was disgusting, not the act itself but the fact he would deny it the day after if his wife asked where he was.

The old tavern that stretched around her was best described as grimy and old. It was dimly lit save for the fire that roared in its sad excuse for a fire place. The man behind the counter was gruff, poorly cared for and seeming to have a grouchy attitude. "Excuse me sir, I'd like to talk about one of you customers."


OOC: Sorry this post is kind of poor. I'm at a loss for what else to do right now.
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The Ripper

Postby Muse » Tue Feb 13, 2018 12:30 am

Your review is ready!


Updated with some Kovic points, yay!

This was my first thread with Kovic in it! I will admit that his posts were confusing to me, out of context from both the character(s) and the situation. But, I could quickly pick up what was going on from your replies, so yay. Ever helpful, risk-taking Nightshade is thorough and straightforward, but I'm always drawn to her inner thoughts.




Nightshade
Points : XP:
15 | These points cannot be used for magic.

Fame:
N/A
Loot : N/A
Injuries + Overstepping : N/A
Knowledge : Skill Knowledge:
N/A

Other Knowledge:
N/A




Kovic
Points : XP:
15 | These points cannot be used for magic.

Fame:
-2 Causing trouble
Loot : N/A
Injuries + Overstepping : N/A
Knowledge : Skill Knowledge:
N/A

Other Knowledge:
N/A




If you've got a question or concern or if I've missed anything, don't hesitate to PM me!

Now that your review is complete,
don’t forget go back to your review post here and drop this image in!

Image

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[center][img]http://standingtrials.com/gallery/image.php?album_id=39&image_id=12206[/img][/center]
User avatar
Muse
Your A-Muse-ment, Always
 
Posts: 338
Joined: Thu Dec 07, 2017 7:36 pm
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