Rest for the Wary (Doran)

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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Val Valencia » Wed May 16, 2018 4:57 pm

53rd of Ashan, 718
*Common*


Drunk was the only way to describe how the dancer looked but at least drunk she wouldn’t feel the chill of rain seeping into her bones or notice the stench of sick that lingered or feel the bruise of skinned knees. But it wasn’t possible to be bitter about it, her companion finding small ways to keep her distracted. His words lightened her faintly, bringing a croak of a laugh out of Val, "You would up-chuck over nothing? I think you're stronger than that.”

Following his lead she kept their hands linked, using him as a lean post gratefully when she needed and as something focus on aside from the open doors. Those were unexpected, she had though that with the trials theatrics and chaos people would distance themselves but it was not so. In this city where manners and order seemed prized, usually, people opened their doors to help those who needed it. But the dancer had no desire to pay the toll of gossip at the moment. All she craved was a break from the events of the riot, leaving her to latch onto the tendrils of conversation he fed her.

“Maybe we have or or you remind me of--" The words caught heavily in her throat, enough to make her stomach swish uncomfortably again. Thats why she could keep calm, because of this hand, a familiar comfort wrapped around hers. Someone to soothe her fears like a child, helping, leading, not real in the way she wanted it to be regardless of the nostalgia and sense of safety it brought. Val closed her eyes for a moment, feeling the instant burn of water beneath her lids that she didn't try to hide before she finished ungracefully, "no one. You remind me of just you—but I think thats an inn?”

The dancer lifted her free hand to wave in the direction of the inn, giving a the finest of tugs to their hands. Inside there would probably be towels for her to wash up, and at least a fire to keep warm. The thoughts alone made her shuffle her feet a little faster at the thought of being finally inside and away from the riot.

It was a small, probably ran out of house but the common room was large, fire going and a small gathering of wet souls lingering while an older man manned a simple desk, calling out to them around the couple in front.

“Need a room?” The man glanced at their joined hands with a smirk but the look on Vals face made it fall, prompting him to start around the desk till she shook her head, “Are you alright, miss?”

“Mm, got caught in—“ She waved her hand sluggishly, “that. Can we sit?”

“Common rooms always open, clean up after yourselves.” He said after a moment, busying away to help the next person but keeping an eye on the two in the least subtle manner.

Taking the approval instantly Val slumped in the nearest seat, hand still holding onto her companions while her head thumped to her knees in silence for a few trills before she mumbled into her legs ungraciously, “I’m Val.”

It was this same position that would keep her from noting a guard entering their momentary haven though she did not seem to be looking for them and if she did not recognize them, perhaps there would no trouble but her voice ringing out was enough to make the dancer flinch in her chair, fingers tightening around the hand she held and refusing to lift her head. It took less than a five bits for the guard to announce herself to the room at larger, her voice echoing sternly.

"Citizens of Andaris, we ask that for your safety you stay indoors while the riot is contained and I am here to remind you that any involved in the riot are to be reported and anyone who knows who started it or caused damage to-trial that it is your duty to report it."
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Doran Cooney » Thu May 17, 2018 2:32 am

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Chuckling, Doran shrugged his shoulders, still carefully managing the weight the woman places so liberally upon him. "Not all weakness are easily apparent." And for every strength there was story behind it; typically one of failings overcome. What had happened in the market was not something that had crippled him in the same way it had the woman, but there were other things he found fearful, terrifying. Only, those things were rare to pass, as he had already found himself buried by them only to slowly dig his way out. He understood there was a breaking point for any man or woman; it was hardly his place to judge.

There was moment of hesitance in her voice as she continued, one Doran took note of but found it did not warrent further questioning, not caught out, shivering in the downpour as they were. He merely nodded, letting their brief conversation fade as they hastened towards the vague, dark shape the woman had pointed out. It was impressive she had been able to spot it through the gathering darkness of the rains, but as they neared, the light from the windows became more apparent. He could just make out the hanging sign over the door's mantle: an engraved tankard of ale settled on a bed of stones.

The moment Doran drew the door, warm, wet heat flowed forth to meet them. It wasn't until he and his charge were both safely inside that he realized just how chilled his body had become, his shivering uncontrollable and lips pale. The crackle of the fire welcomed them, along with the proprietor's amicable greeting. Though the inn's common room was hardly grandiose, it was exceedingly comfortable. The low hum of chatter had stopped only briefly as those gathered had stopped to glance at the newcomers before continuing once more; none seemed particularly interested in a pair of rain-soaked, ill-prepared fools such as they appeared to be.

At the man's concern, the woman seemed to have things handled. Doran merely offered the man an apologetic smile and, "Much obliged.", allowing himself to be pulled along by the dark haired woman's tenacious grip. He received a thoughtful squint for his nicety, and he turned his attention back to his companion, not wanting to give the innkeeper any further reason to find them suspicious. Though, as he surveyed the weary, bedraggled form of the woman who, finally, had introduced herself as simply "Val", Doran wave his free hand at the innkeeper, gesturing for a towel and two drinks. They had already added a considerable about of volume to the shallow puddles that dotted the floor; it would be a long while before they were dried by the warmth of the hearth alone without a little help.

About to give his own name in reply, he found himself interrupted as the door was pulled open once more, this time to allow an equally drenched but far more ardent guard to step through. Her voice was loud and commanding, but unfamiliar. Doran felt his heart calm from the sharp jerk it had taken when she'd first entered, but joined the other in nodding quietly and respectfully at her behest - or perhaps more aptly "command". The guard, eyes scanning the room, approached the clearly most recent to arrive, eyes sharp and questions ready.

"You two, where did you just come from?" All conversation, low or otherwise, had died into an attentive silence.

Glancing down at Val, who looked for all the world as if her soul had simply left her body - all but save the hand and gripped his with an anxious pressure -, Doran supposed it was best he be the one to respond. Never having been skilled at lies, Doran chose to keep his answers truthful. "Just now? Outside." He nodded, thoughtfully, as though his answer had been precisely what he'd been asked to provide. "I'm certain you're already aware, but it's terrible weather to be out and about on the streets."

Clearly not amused, the guard's frown only further emphasized her commanding tone. "You want to be cute, do it with your girl." Doran's eyes lit confused, but the guard rolled her eyes and continued. "Were you near the meat market at all, several streets down? Either of you?"

Pursing his lips for a moment, Doran nodded slowly. "It's very likely we were near there. This deluge makes it difficult to discern little more than a step or two in any direction, I'm afraid."
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Val Valencia » Sat May 19, 2018 10:41 am

*Common*
“Its a simple question,” The guard snapped, then rolled her eyes clearly done with the pair, “Yes or no, were you in the riot?”

Val was fairly certain this would be her first in jail for something other than disorderly conduct. There was no way the guard would miss them, and she hadn’t, drawn like a moth to the very obvious flame. A laugh nearly bubbled passed her lips, both in exhaustion and at the whole situation with the guard. It seemed the fates were insistent they be a part of this, a small part of the chaos that she wanted not part of. All the same she made no effort to be helpful until the guard grew snappish.

“M’ sick.” She mumbled out, refusing to raise her head, “Was going home, needed to rest, didn’t protest.”

If it was discourteous, well, no one ever called the dancer a lady. It also wasn’t a lie, just because they’d been involved didn’t mean they’d been a part of the riot. In fact, they hadn’t even been a part of the protest. Still, she waited for the guard to call them on it, her nails biting into her thigh but the thought of lifting her head made her stomach roil. It was a tense silence that followed her mumbles, leaving Val to wait to be arrested until an awkward cough sounded to her right, a voice speaking uncertainly where she could see shuffling feet, “I have towels and drinks.”

The guard wait another bit before speaking, sternly to the rest of the crowd, “Anyone else? Yes or no, were any here at the riot?”

The answer came mixed, the guard giving the two a warning glance before going off to question more informative people. It left the two in relative peace, Val gave his hand one final squeeze then dragged a towel off the table to cover her head, not even attempting to clean herself off properly. A few tears slipped out, exhaustion and a headache finally setting in properly.

“We can’t catch a break.” She giggled out pathetically after a moment, “And I’m sure I’m never gonna be dry again.”

Finally lifting her head a but, the dancer uncovered her face, resting it on the table to face her companion and holding out a towel to him limply, “Thank you for ordering drinks.”

Yet for once she didn’t jump to it, uncertain if her stomach would handle anything for a least a few more bits and unwilling to vomit where she may have to clean it. The fact that the guard was still question people, voice drifting towards them did not help the feeling, leaving her tensing on and off until her shoulders hurt from it. It was going to be a long rest of the trial.
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Doran Cooney » Sat May 19, 2018 8:32 pm

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Uncertain how else he might avoid the question, Doran found himself interrupted by Val's weak interjection. It seemed she, too, was as keen to tell truth void of information that might be misconstrued. As the guard turned to verify the information with Doran, her brow raised and face hardly warranting anything but a nod or shake of the head, Doran opted with the prior, small beads of water still dripping from his hair. In the short moment of silence that passed, it seemed the guard might say something more, by the manner in which she squinted first at Doran than his companion, but when the innkeeper quietly and politely interrupted, hands filled with what Doran had requested, she seemed content enough to search elsewhere - at least for the time being.

Paying the man with a thankful nod and smile, Doran set both towels and drinks on the table, frowning as he realized Val might need something a bit softer on so empty a stomach. Before the innkeeper left, he requested some bread and water as well, paying the man in advance as apology for his forgetfulness earlier and for their disheveled state. He received a less suspicious, professional smile in return before the man headed off. Eyeing his companion with a soft, pitiable frown, Doran nodded slowly, though it was more reflex than for her benefit, face toward the floor and all. "It does seem as though our luck is currently deciding whether it wishes to be bad or good." He certainly hoped for the latter.

Taking the towel offered, he rubbed it over his soaked head with a grin. "Of course. What was it...? 'When one hails ails, ale never fails?'" He shrugged, pulling the now considerably damped towel from his head, his hair sticking out in every direction. "Whatever the phrase, I agree with the sentiment behind it." The bread and water arrived shortly after, delivered with a gentle nod from the innkeeper who seemed to the regard the pair of them with far less hostility - his current object of scorn the guard who was, clearly, disturbing his patrons with her questions. Taking one of the mugs in hand, Doran took a welcome draught, letting the cool liquid warm his throat and stomach. "At the very least, we're somewhere warm and comfortable." Realizing he hadn't yet introduced himself, he inclined his head towards his exhausted companion. "Oh, I apologize, my name is Doran. I would say it's a pleasure to meet you, which would quite definitely be true, but circumstances make such a statement seem... ingenuine, at best." He chuckled at that, shaking his head before taking another sip of ale. Across the way, the guard had begun to shout, clearly frustrated, at a young woman who, in turn, had begun to grow quite red in the face - hands balled into fists. The trial, it seemed, had only just begun.
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Val Valencia » Sat May 19, 2018 10:17 pm

*Common*
At the shout Val flinched, eyes flicking to the guard then back to Doran, she even scooted her chair to face completely away from the agitated guard. If she didn’t see it, it wasn’t her problem. Rubbing the towel almost painfully on her head she nodded and begun wringing out her skirt with a subdued sigh though she attempted a grimace of a smile.

“Its nice to meet you still, you’ve helped me more than most strangers. Your name does sound familiar—I did meet you, I think, earlier this season! With—“ Whatever the dancer had been about to say was cut off by more people entering, some of them clearly covered in meat which made Val glance down at her own clothes. They’d thankfully left the riot early but judging by these bedraggled folks it was either still going or people were now trying to escape the guards.

Whatever shouting had been going on before stilled, the guard turning and marching passed the pair two begin interrogating the group who had just entered, “You there! I have questions—“

A part of her wanted to scream in frustration, she just wanted the trial to end. Wanted the day to be over so she could sort her own thoughts and try to understand the sudden chaos erupting in the city. But how sudden could it be that a riot had sparked? People had tried to burn the market. Val bit her lip until she drew blood then shook her head, “Theres not enough ale in this tavern to make me forget today.”

Finally she tipped back the mug, downing it with a deep breath and feeling it settle heavily in her stomach. Liquid courage if she ever needed it. Though what she’d need it for she couldn’t think until the guards voice rose above the shouting that had begun by the door.

“Enough!” The roar seemed to silence the the place, punctuated by two more guards filling in, “Anymore arguing and you’ll be taken out with us. As of now, one is to leave here until we finish questioning everyone here. Until then you’ll all sit—” The guard glared at the group in front of her, “quietly and wait your turn, am I clear?”

Even the dancer found herself nodding her head, body leaning towards Dorans to escape whatever in the fates was going on by the door and hoping their turn with questioning had been done. It was almost laughable how the fates seemed unable to let this instance go, enough to finally prompt another hysterical giggled out of Val, that she barely stifled, speaking softly to her companion, “The worst part of the trial is that we didn’t even get any meat, except this!”

She held out the little chunk of meat she pulled out her hair as she began combing it, trying to soothe herself and finish cleaning herself off. The flipping switch of her own emotions making her eyes droop warily but she tried to paste a smile on while they waited because even if they had wanted to leave there was no leaving now.
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Doran Cooney » Sun May 20, 2018 2:43 am

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Doran quirked a brow at Val's near remembrance, but followed her surprised stare as more people entered, clearly having straggled in from the chaos, as they were haphazardly decorated in various bits and pieces of some poor butchered animal - or animals? Her epiphany seeming to slip away, Doran didn't pursue it. She was most certainly weary from the events passed, and there was no need to seek after half-conscious memories of a mind confused and fatigued. Instead, he settled into the chair beside her, drying his face and patting down the rest of his soaking body to help the fire's progress along.

Though Val's statement most likely intended as rhetoric, Doran gently shook his head, smile soft and playful. "It's far more useful to remember these things; it serves to help avoid stumbling into them in the future." The mug in his hand found its way to his lips again as he took another thoughtful swig, curiously eyeing the poor unfortunate souls who now cowered before the rather brash questions from the guard. "At the very least, we're not quite so poor off as they."

The more brazen of the pair had begun to standup for herself, her own voice rising over the guard's until the Knight gave her declaration and several more filed in. Leaning back into his chair, Doran tutted at the whole situation, quite glad to have attention drawn away from him and his companion. It seemed they would be going nowhere for the next handful of breaks or so, though he had no reason to be anywhere else. The inn was warm and, sans the guard's investigations, quite comfortable.

Eyeing the bit of dangerously conspicuous evidence, Doran's grin widened in amusement, though his eyes did glimmer with a low glean of apprehension. "Best to get rid of that." He murmured, ripping off a hunk of the bread and popping some of it into his mouth to chew thoughtfully as he watched the guards. After all, they had become the sole focus of the tavern; from what he could tell, most seemed perturbed at worst. None of those present appeared to know anything, nor had they been involved enough to believe themselves guilty of anything. It was simply a matter of time until the guards grew tired of "I don't know"s and "I didn't do any of that"s before they moved on.

"So, Val," Doran turned his head just enough that he could see her out of the corner of his eye. His voice was light, airy, and warm. "What was the best part of the trial?"
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Val Valencia » Mon May 21, 2018 5:38 pm

*Common*

“You can’t avoid these things, they’re life and only better off for now.” Val said with a wary quirk of her lips, eyes dark thinking of other things before she shook herself. This was not what she’d come to this city for. The dancer had moved, farther and farther, close as she could get to other side of the world but you couldn’t escape your fears it seemed. Wiggling her fingers to gain feeling, she flicked her gaze back to the guards.

Questioning didn’t make a difference, they’d have to arrest half the market and it wouldn’t change the way people felt, probably would only make things worse. It made her shiver, how much worse could it get when people threw food away and fought each other over things that were unchangeable? Her gloomy thoughts were only broken by Dorans attempt to change the subject. She snorted but threw the meat into her empty cup then laughed, “Does waking up count? I could also say I learned new things. The people of Andaris aren’t as happy as they act. Thats a good side, I think…whats your good side, I’ve got nothing.”

The dancer shook her head, it was hard to put her usual spin on things like this, she closed her eyes in thought, twisting her hair to wring it out more with and watch the water splash onto the floor. Her lips tingled as the talking warmed them but her own chatter deserted her, leaving her words sliding in her head but slipping away before they could pass her lips fully. She was unable to keep her gaze from straying to the group of guards and civilians, watching with tense shoulders as a handful of guards left, more shouting over the din of rain as the doors slid shut.

A knot of sickened curiosity wove through her, “D—do you think they stopped it?”

As if in response to her question the original guard the those left finally went out the door, rather quickly, the open door filtering a few more shouts that hinted at them getting answers they sought somewhere else. It almost brought a tinge of guilt as her mind unclouded itself slowly. Nervously she glanced at Doran, “Should we have stayed and helped? What if people got hurt because I didn’t—couldn’t—fates.”

The dancer pressed her face into her hands, she couldn’t even form proper sentences for a break. Breathing slowly she tapped her foot in distraction, bouncing it loudly while she re-sorted her thoughts.

“Why isn’t there meat?”
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Doran Cooney » Mon May 21, 2018 11:39 pm

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Though he raised a brow at his companion's choice of place for their small piece of evidence, Doran grinned at Val's answer. "Meeting the morning is always something to be glad for, I think." Breaking off another piece of the bread, he nodded and added a more sombre though still light, "I imagine most bear a weight heavier than they seem to carry by step alone." The city had been sinking into the depths of paranoia and fear for some time already. Tensions ran high and tempers higher; though he couldn't say he was surprised by the actions logical following, it didn't make it any less unpleasant to admit his people were struggling with demons far greater than their own personal vices.

Not responding immediately to Val's invitation to join in his own brighter perspective, his gaze settled on the guards as he took another, contemplative swig from his mug. As they began to file out, not bothering to cast a glance back at any of those still gathered within the common room, Doran and Val included, his lips turned a relieved grin, his expression belying his own doubts he had been striving to withhold. "I would say not getting arrested for something we didn't do to be a most excellent turn of events for us."

As he watched the first - though final to leave - guard depart, Doran shrugged at Val's questions. "I would imagine so, if there are this many guards to spare in investigating a single inn." He let his gaze wander back to his companion's anxious features, but he didn't have much in the way of reassurance, merely honestly and a lack of his own worry behind it. "Had we stayed, we most certainly would have been detained or worse. You were certainly in no condition to be of much use to anyone, I wouldn't place too much blame upon myself for making so a rapid departure were I you." He did imagine, had he tried to help more than the dark haired woman away from the riotous turmoil, perhaps there would have been one or two fewer culprits for the guards to punish, but it was so questionable a possibility, he didn't draw much guilt from it.

"If I recall correctly, Warrick has been having difficulties with their hunts of late. They weren't able to meet demands this season and last." Though, he had heard such information second - or perhaps third? - hand, and his voice carried little conviction in his answer. "Bread suits me just fine."
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Rest for the Wary (Doran)

Postby Val Valencia » Tue May 22, 2018 11:20 am

*Common*

“But why? Aren’t there any animals? Do they suck at hunting now or what?” Val shook her head, “I’m trying to understand why—I just don’t understand.” There wasn’t anything she could explain that would change the uncomfortable feeling in her stomach. It wasn’t normal, here, this. She’d been poor herself, was poor, but never had she attacked someone else or others, the idea just didn’t make sense in her head. She still managed a real smile at Dorans answer, “Bread alone isn’t enough to stay healthy but theres other meats. Plants. You know, stuff you can do besides attack your own city.”

Except she could put the blame on herself, always with her half-assed attempts to do things, leaving when she wanted, being too scared to do anything. The dancer squeezed her eyes shut, what good was she if she couldn’t do anything? If she hadn’t been falling all over herself, if she’d paid attention to the effect her words had, seen who threw the rock—so many what ifs ran through her head. “I don’t like feeling responsible for things and I don’t like feeling useless.”

The words were whispered, more rhetorical than actual speaking before she looked up at her companion, blearily, tears in her eyes from fates only knew what now, “We need to hunt. I can—I can see if people know how and—I don’t know. Can’t there be a rationing or something? Why aren’t your higher up people fixing this? Its not okay, Doran. Its just not. People could have gotten hurt. People did get hurt and for what? You could have helped other people, I should have helped other people—not—ugh.”

The dancer was rarely angry but ale on an empty stomach and with no desire to eat she could feel her ire eating away at her, swallowing the ale up and spewing it out like a growing fire. But it wouldn’t do much more than sputter, still weak kneed and exhausted Val was doing nothing but working herself into a pointless frenzy of misplaced guilt. Head thumping to the table painfully she was aware of her circular logic but unable to stop it. “Can you just knock me out? Better than being awake.”

Words of how he should’ve just left her there stuck selfishly on her tongue until she softly thumped her head again, it only to knock out the roiling thoughts. Her leg began bouncing faster in agitation at her own self, fingers drumming tunelessly but it worked to finally warm her up more. The motion bringing the painful sting of feeling back to her fingers, make her hiss angrily. But there was no one to direct it to, except herself because she couldn’t snap at her companion, at least, she was trying not to. With an explosion of motion Val jumped up, knocking her plate to the side and leaning heavily on the table, face turning green at the sudden movement.

“I’m going to talk to the guards.”

The words were firm but she made no move from the table, legs vibrating from the strain of her nerves and standing so quickly, the pins and needles in her feet making her face twist.
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