• Mature • Secret Ways

69th of Vhalar 722

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Kasoria
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Secret Ways

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69th trial of Vhalar, 722
The Dubois Estate
Night

"So... how's it work?"

Kasoria had been quietly dreading that question. Not just because it was easier to do than to explain, but because, well... he'd never actually done it before. He knew the potential was there. Extrapolating what he knew about the discipline, applying that to the task at hand... then yes, it was possible. He had a good idea of how he'd do it, too. Like everything else with Transmutation, it required touch, contact, letting his ever-curious Spark explore with senses beyond his own.

But he didn't have any experience to fall back on.

"S'called Identity," he told Vaul as they walked down the darkened hallway. The last lamp had been extinguished a break before, but that hindered them not. They were Oh'Pee boys, raised partly in the shadows of the Underground. Navigating gloomy or blackened tunnels was known to them by the time they started tugging themselves. "You put yer hand on somethin', an' yer Spark-"

"Spark?"

"S'the thing in yeh that makes the magic work."

"Thought that was ether?"

"It is, but it's also-look, yeh touch somethin', it tells yeh what it is."

"... what's it sound like?"

No answer for that one, either. Kasoria knew because his Spark knew. There was a communication, and Fates, most times he couldn't shut the thing up. Not one but two of his mutations seemed determined to drive him bad with information about the world around him. Composition, density, age, weaknesses... he had to make a real effort to quiet it at times, especially in places entirely new to him. Yet he'd endured it long enough to know it just... knew. And once it worked out what it was identifying, so did he. As if he was remembering something, expressed purely through existing memories and impressions of an object. It was, really, quite fascinating.

But he didn't have time to explain that, nor was he here for an experiment.

"Doesn't work that way," he said as he stopped before an intricately carved door. "But it speaks, an' it seems more'n I do."

"But-"

"Here we are."

He opened the doors and saw a luxurious bedroom beyond. More of a suite than a room, really. A bronze bath by the windows, one wall lined with a book case, sumptuous rugs on a bed big enough to sleep four. Another door led to what looked like a closet, packed with clothes. He saw paintings and sculptures as they walked, all clearly... tasteful. He wasn't one to judge value. A writing desk was under the opposing window, inkwell, wax stick... no papers. Nothing had been written or studied there in a while. Likewise, the bed hadn't been slept in, nor the clothes moved from the closet. He ran a gloved hand over the bookcase as he passed, and saw a smear of dust on his fingers.

Keeping away while the foreigners are taking up space.

"Reckon he sleeps 'ere?"

Vaul gestured to a painting hanging over the bed. A nobleman in relaxed but stately repose: hand in hip, other hanging loose, dressed in finery and silks. Kasoria frowned and tried to remember what this Nathanial Dubois looked like... and decided this man seemed too old, too much grey about his head. Father, perhaps? Ancestor? Either way, he was sleeping elsewhere. The Band and the delegation were quartered in the wing next door. This place was... he would say not for the current owners. They were in the opposite wing, and guards were posted there, patrolling night and trial. But this one was for distant relatives, other guests... or just ostentation, perhaps.

Could be a wild goose chase. If there was a tunnel entrance, it would be where the family is.

Assuming it's the only one.

"Kas?"

"Dunno. But he ain't here, an' we ain't got all night."

Vaul fidgeted. Not nervous, just restless. He didn't enjoy the feeling of being useless, and this was something beyond his ken. Still, at least he got to watch.

"A'right," Kasoria said with finality, removing his gloves and walking to the wall. Two of the sides of the room had windows; unlikely to have secret doors carved into them. Unless the Dubois' could also fly. "Time t'ave a look..."

He closed his eyes, summoned his Spark... and heard Vaul breath a curse.

The eyes. He saw the eyes.

Vaul understood why Kasoria favored those gloves now. It wasn't just a practical choice; they hid the things sunken into the back of his hands. As he watched, even in the dark, he could see the flush of Brilliance illuminate his old friend... and then the eyes on his hands snap open. Some oddly calm part of his mind noted that the were the same color as Kasoria's eyes from before they'd turned jet black. Dark brown. After a few moments the one facing him actually looked his way, he was sure of it. Kasoria didn't respond, or even seem to notice. He muttered something, maybe a spell, but it sounded... almost gentle.

"C'mon... look fer me..."

His Spark did as commanded, boosted by him making himself deliberately sightless. Another mutation he'd found a way to make a use of. As he placed his hand against the wall behind the bed, he could feel his ether seep into the paint and wood and stone. Delving deeper, guided by his Spark. Almost instantly it started rattling off properties. What the stone was. How old. The chemicals in the paint. Cracks in the bricks. It spread deeper, broader, through the surface and across the length of the wall. The same thing, over and over... but nothing that stood out.

Shite.

He lowered his arm, opened his eyes, and his Spark seemed dulled in an instant. Still questing and searching, but at a far smaller radius. Fates, what was he doing? Was he really taking the word of a spy that there were secret tunnels in the Dubois Estate? Probably (after all, who better would know?), but was he expecting to just stumble across one? Easy as that? Just reach out with his magic and boom, find a doorway. He shook his head and massaged the bridge of his nose.

And you waited until tonight, as well. Less than a break before you're set to meet. Fucking genius, you are.

Vaul was smart enough to see his boss was not in the mood for questions. Frustration rolled off the Raggedy Man like fog. He paced the floor and closed his eyes again, only now with his hands on his hips. Back and forth across the rug, muttering and cursing in two languages. Which was understandable to him: Ith'ession was a fine, flowing language for spewing out annoyance. His eyes swept over the room as he waited.

Room. Fuck me. Place is twice the size of the house I grew up in. We had a bath, though. Well, after I stole-

Kasoria stopped pacing. Looking straight down. Something stirred him. He closed his eyes again, those hideous second orbs snapped open... and he sunk down... pressing his palms to the rug, and to the tile underneath it...

Wool.

Cotton.

Stitching.

Dusty.

Warm.

Marble.

Old.

Polished.

Fine.

Grout.

Dirty.

Thin.

Wood.


That was when he'd stopped. His Spark was obedient, but it was willful. It didn't think in the same way he did (Fates, if it even thought at all). It didn't just look at the walls, it explored where he was walking, too. It whispered to him and he learned even in his foul mood... until he learned something unexpected. There wasn't just floor and fabric under his feet. He frowned, cast a quick glance out the window. They were on the ground floor. If not a door in a wall, then maybe a hatch to-

"Help me move this."

The two of them pulled the plush rug aside to reveal... more tiles. Unconvinced, Kasoria willed his Spark again, holding up his hands-

"Bloody hells, Kas."

-until the palms glowed as if they were suns chained to him. He hovered them over the tile, examining them, eyes closed after a few moments when he touched them. Vaul watched, enrapt despite himself, casting a quick look back at the door. The staff were asleep, and the guards were outside, not inside. But it wouldn't be outside possibility if one of them was doing a walk through, and his ears were pricked for footsteps. Kasoria saw none of this. Eyes scrunched shut, he sifted through the "words" barraging him, trying to discern some kind of location-

"This one.'

Vaul turned back and saw Kasoria rap his knuckles across the tiles. His eyebrows shot up when the deep retorts suddenly changed to a higher pitch. One of them was thinner. The one with the very visible and unusual hole at one corner. Large enough for a finger, and when Kasoria worked his own inside, crooked it and heaved-

"Well, fuck me running..."

The Raggedy Man smiled in triumph as the manhole-sized tile was pulled up, revealing a hole with a ladder set into the side of it. He knew it would be a bedroom. What safer place would the master of a house pick? If anyone came tearing through the front door, too fierce or numerous to be defeated, this would be where he'd retreat to. So this was the last place he'd be, and if his guards failed... he had one more way out. He examined the tile as he held it. Same material as the rest, but this was just a façade, maybe half as thick as the others. The grout lines were even matching, but that hole gave it away... and only then, because Kasoria knew what was under it.

"See," he said after a moment, "Told ya it'd work."
word count: 1678

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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Kasoria
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Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2016 3:34 am
Race: Human
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Re: Secret Ways

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"Someone t'see yeh, Kas."

That came as unexpected to most, but not to the man himself. Only for a moment did the Raggedy Man's brow furrow in confusion. Who would have cause to see him, in Rharne? He'd met precious few natives and none who would have any interest in.

Ah. Of course.

Timur.

He walked with Raand down the gravel path to the front gates. No point just assuming this wasn't a trap, after all. He could count on Belial's eyes and arrow tracking him from the roof of the estate, but it never hurt to have another sword nearby in case of an ambush. When he saw who awaited him was just a beardless youth, still he didn't throw away all his caution. He'd been a beardless youth once upon, and was a vicious little bastard back then, too.

One look at the man approaching him told the boy this was the man he'd been told to find. Black eyes. All the way black. Letting in no light even on this bright, clear day. The killer stopped a few feet away, resting a hand on his sword, quirking an eyebrow in silent query.

"You... You are Kasoria?"

"Aye."

A hand went quickly into a pocket... then froze as the black eyed man's partner took a swift step forward, gripping his sword tight. By contrast, this "Kasoria" himself didn't even twitch. Unseen by the youth, a bow string was pulled tighter a hundred or so yards away. The guards flanking him seemed to shuffle a few discreet inches further away, as if seeking to avoid... well, splatter.

Kasoria smiled. The youth did not quail. He just moved slower.

Clever boy.

"Message for you, sir."

Kasoria took the folded parchment from him, opened it, and read it. Several times. Enough to commit the words to memory. Then he summoned his Spark and bathed the note in shimmering ether in front of the boy. He couldn't help but gawp a little; magic was hardly unknown in Rharne, but ay chance to see it up close was always taken. Kasoria could see the glow of his ether in the boys eyes, watching in fascination as the note curled, yellowed, then crumbled and dissipated in a handful of trills. The entropy of a century packed into a few heartbeats.

The Raggedy Man shook his fingers clear of the dust, then gave the kid a quick nod.

"Give yer boss my thanks."

That sufficed as a farewell, but he didn't turn his back until the gates were closed again. After watching the youth walk swiftly away to deliver his reply. Raand joined him in silence until they were away from the guards.

"Timur?"

"Aye."

"Wantin' t'meet?"

"Aye."

"Soon."

"Aye."

Very soon.
word count: 470

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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Kasoria
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Posts: 1668
Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2016 3:34 am
Race: Human
Renown: 1085
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Re: Secret Ways

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The next night, as it turned out. Which was why Kasoria was so eager to find that damn secret entrance that he didn't even know existed. But Timur's information was good, and now Vaul and him were staring down a tunnel professionally carved into the floor of the master bedroom... and ending about fifteen feet below.

"Think they've got candles down there?"

"Won't be an issue," Kasoria said, sending a brief pulse of Brilliance into his hand with a wry smile. "Carry me own."

"Fuckin' show off..."

Kasoria didn't bother with anymore banter. The night was already dark and he was running out of breaks. He levered himself into the hole, feet resting on the rungs. After a few more seconds of descent, enough for him to get the distance between them, he stopped, head sticking out the the hole.

"A'right, second I'm away, cover it up, put the rug back. Won't trouble me t'get it open again. Tell the lads 'bout it, but none a' the nods, an' not Manclin. I trust youse guys not t'spill anythin', but these toffs... well, they talk fer a livin'."

Vaul gave a curt nod and that was a speech as far as Kasoria was concerned. They didn't exchange fond farewells, just an extra moment of eye contact as Kasoria started moving again. They were too practical in their professions to be much moves by words. Actions defined them, and the length of their lives. He trusted Vaul to do as he was told, out of the gold he'd been given, the respect he'd earned, and the fear he projected. Mostly the first two. As the tile was replaced and all became crushing, utter darkness around him, Kasoria he'd no fear.

Darkness was nothing to him. Not after all these arcs. When his feet touched the ground and he turned, he willed his Brilliance into being in one hand. Raising it like a torch and illuminating a straight but simple tunnel, tall enough for a grown man. It only went one way, as he'd expected, and so he started walking.

He mused that this didn't feel... natural. Not that a simple tunnel would make anyone feel that way, but he was practically raised in the passages and catacombs of Etzos. Those places had history to them. Decades, centuries of development and expansion, eras of the city laid atop each other, excavated and then abandoned, built upon and forgotten. They were a rabbit warren that seemed without reason... until you walked them. Arc after arc. Felt the difference between the stones beneath your feet. By comparison, this one felt... boring.

Fucking Fates. Sentimental, are we?

He'd guessed it was a quarter-league before he he ran out of tunnel. It ended in a wooden doorway that hadn't been opened in arcs. No lock, just a simple catch. But when he opened it, and the stench hit him...

"Huh. Clever."

The door opened into what was undeniably a sewer. Smell alone told him that. Kasoria stepped out into a crescent-shaped tunnel with flowing, stinking water down the middle of it. But it was the door that drew his admiration. Half of it, the hidden half, was wood. The front though? That was brickwork. Carved maybe an inch thick but identical to the worn, wet bricks that made up the sewer tunnel. Only one of them was out of place: dull red to the faded grey of the rest. Probably to mark it from those looking for it from the outside. As he closed it again, he noted the holes set into the brick of the door. Two of them, finger width... and deep enough for him to crook his own into them, and open it again.

Marvelous what you can craft, when you have the money.

He emerged in a side street a few bits later. Still in the Glass Quarter, by the state of the roads and the architecture of the buildings. The city boy peered around, sniffed the air... and grimaced. Yep, that stench would be clinging for a while. But he guessed it would be more at home in the Dust Quarter.
word count: 709

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
User avatar
Kasoria
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Posts: 1668
Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2016 3:34 am
Race: Human
Renown: 1085
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Wealth Tier: Tier 5

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Re: Secret Ways

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This is the place.

Ah, now this was more familiar to him. The smell of stale beer and faded vomit. The laughs and carousing, fiddles and banjos. Lights blazing from inside and around the sign above the door, a city lighthouse beckoning all passing folk bid enter, imbibe, and enjoy. If there was one place Kasoria knew well, it was taverns. He'd seen every species and variety throughout his life, and The Copper Prince was... not that bad.

Aye, that's until you taste their ale.

He shucked up the hood on his cloak, enough for the top half of his face to be in shadow. His eyes were too much of a giveaway back home, but here... well, he knew his name rang out far from Etzos, these days. But knowing what he looked like was a different matter. When he walked in the door, he was but another short, slight man stepping in from the mild night air. A blast of noise and warmth struck him like a wave and he hoped some of the sewer was blown off him. Eyes turned to him, half-interested and turning right back after a few moments.

Just another face in the crowd. Perfect.

He studied the bar as he walked over to it, and he remembered the note. Terse and to the point, not a word wasted. But enough imparted for him to know everything. Quick eyes scanned the crowd, bobbing heads and raised arms, ladies with trays of food and drink and a beefy bartender pulling pints with relentless speed. Yet it was never enough: the band had got them thirsty and the parched mouths clamored. Kasoria kept walking, finding a quieter spot at the very end... and waiting until the bartender was passed by with an empty keg over his shoulder before speaking up-

"Hey?" The bearded man turned and scowled at him. "Youse serve Hiladrith's Special?"

Any other man, he was guessing the man would ask him if he looked like a fucking serving wench, and besides, he was a little fucking busy, shortarse. Instead those green eyes blinked... then blinked again... looked him up and down and ah, there was the surprise. The kind Kasoria recognized, when he saw someone pair his name and his legend to the little man talking to them. He tilted his chin up a little more, so the man could see his eyes... and that seemed to seal it.

"Lemme come back wiv' another barrel," the bartender said eventually, "An' I'll see what I can do."

Kasoria nodded and took a seat. Watched the man lumber away and through the door. Without even needing to close his eyes anymore, he willed his Abrogation Spark to life, and let it drip-drip-drip into protection around him. Timur was a spy; such men were not to be trusted. He could be setting him up, could have been turned by another. Or mayhap his message had been intercepted, or his messenger turned, and there would be eager blades waiting for him. Or, maybe, and most likely, he was a paranoid old bastard and expecting betrayal was simply his default mental setting.

He didn't question it. He just gave the order and let those fields fall into place. On a clear day, one could see such Replicative Fields well enough; they shimmered gently over whatever they protected, like a mirage's haziness trapped and focused on a single spot. But in this place, with smoky air and drunken eyes and a constant whirl of selfish civilians, and the Fields only cast over his torso, not his entire body... he felt confident enough.

"While you wait, love?"

A mug of something brown and frothy was placed in front of him. Kasoria looked at it for a moment... and left it untouched. One could never be sure, and he was here on business. He folded his hands and waited. Remembered. Wondered who he was due to meet. Replayed the wording of the note in his head.

The Copper Prince. Before midnight tomorrow.

Ask the barman for a Hildarith Special.

They're expecting you.
word count: 691

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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Pig Boy
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Re: Secret Ways

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It was a great challenge for them to keep their hands off of this issue. One of those complicit in the murder of their Immortal Queen's best friend, Lisirra. But Sarah Glazebrook had to learn subtlety, the part and role of her assumed body. And while she was able to disappear at need, to mix in and pretend to be normal, it was a challenge not to put a hands on approach to this fact finding. Nevertheless, she'd sent her hounds out to scout the alleyways of the Glass Quarter. These creatures were not made for subtlety. They were beings of carnage and fury, ripping and tearing through flesh and bone was as natural to them as breathing. It took most of her concentration to hijack the red-eyes of the Sessfiend as it stalked through the streets. Watching as one of their rival's lackeys lackeys entered the Copper Prince. There she watched, and waited.



Notes passed hands in the backroom of the Copper Prince. And soon enough the transit of possession found its way to the right man. He didn't make a scene as he entered, but did so as any patron of that dive would. Chatting up the peopple he recognized, asking how the next best fighter was coming, and talking shit about the chicken-fighters at the Pit.

Finally, the man, strawberry blonde hair obscuring his ruddy, pock-marked face sat down a few seats from Kasoria.

"Hiladrith special." He said to the one at the bar, and then made a subtle signal toward Kasoria.

"He got the last one."

"Shit." The ruddy man looked at Kasoria sidelong, and frowned. "Like a guy with good taste, though."

"Share a mug?" He asked, as an empty one was placed before the ruddy man. "I'm Brenk. I'll pay the tab if you share."

Regardless, if Kasoria agreed, he'd accept half of the brown liquid into his own tankard. "Let's find a place to sit then."

He pointed toward a place off to the side of the tavern, away from the stairwell leading to higher and lower planes of the establishment, and away from the backroom. It wasn't exactly a dark corner, nor was it too obvious that the would be seeking solitude. It would be just out of earshot of most. "So, you wanted the skinny on this little turf war?" He spoke in low tones.

"Shit's weird lately. People spotting spirits, ghosts, or red eyes in the dark that don't move, but then blink and disappear. They turn on the lights and nothing there. People on edge and shit. It's disgusting. You'd think half of the Quarter's balls had dropped off." Brenk shrugged, "But turf war between higher ups, that's a problem. It would be a problem, and we're thinking at least one close to one of the kingpins must have been compromised... You haven't heard of the Witch that got her tongue just about torn out?"

Brenk took a drink of his mug, then when he'd had his fill, set it down. "She had what made her one of the more powerful kingpins smashed like a pretty gem. Something that kept her hidden from Immortals, like Ilaren. Made it hard to find her. Now? It's gone. Doing of the Lightning Knights, by what I hear."

"Some say it started with the chaos of the All-Tavern's tournament, the slaughter that happened there." Brenk shook his head, "I think it's even earlier. Something triggered at the Mummer's Ball. You heard about it? Fancy dance for fancy folk, and some mummers put on a show for them that was alittle too much for their eyes. They got right upset, and unmasked Syroa. Beat the shit out of her, don't ask me how, and even for a time it was thought she was dead."

"Course, she is now." Brenk spat over his shoulder, "Immortals dropping like flies lately, seems. Others coming back..."

It seemed Brenk had trouble focusing on one issue, but rambled all over the place. At the same time, it didn't appear he had much to offer other than well known events that occurred lately, aside from the information on the Witch's trinket that had broken. But then that was a done deal.


word count: 730
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Kasoria
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Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2016 3:34 am
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Re: Secret Ways

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It was hardly the most gossamer introduction in the history of espionage, but it sufficed well enough for their purpose. Whoever this bearded blonde was, whoever he represented, Kasoria knew he had the information he needed. So he accepted the man's "offer" and followed him to the booth. Allowing the man to get seated first, giving himself an extra moment or two to scan the booths flanking them. Sliding onto the seat opposite Brenk, Kasoria kept his black eyes moving as the man talked... and talked... and he sighed.

All things that have happened. Gossip and rumor already done the rounds. Nothing I can use.

"This a fuckin' joke?"

That had the intended effect: provoking confusion. For a moment Brenk's mind just seemed to... blank. Expression going from mirthful to empty, uncomprehending. The next moment was more of a pause, as if waiting for Kasoria to fill him in on... no, that wasn't going to happen either. The little man just sat across from him and glared, unimpressed, unspeaking, menace and annoyance radiating off him like steam from polar ice.

"I... What-"

"I came 'ere fer intel. Y'know what dat is? Intelligence. Facts. Information." He held up a hand and snapped out a finger with each example. "Places. Names. Dates where those two intersect, y'ken? An' alla' details youse can furnish 'bout the who an' the why. What've you given me? Fuck all but gutter scuttle an' shite I could hear from a drunk inna fuckin' tavern." Black eyes like a spider's flicked around at where they sat. "Well. Close enough."

Another pause. Just long enough for Brenk to get over his fear and replace it with anger. Kasoria could see it happen. Watched the man's stunned expression harden, mouth close, swallow his fear and the put a bit more base into his voice when he said-

"Look, I dunno how you do things back-"

"Aye, yeh fuckin' do. Cuz I'm 'ere, ain't I? Fixin' t'do what youse lot couldn't, an' fer free, no less. But I can't do bugger all if I dunno where t'start sniffing fer a trail. Now, the night's wearin' an' I ain't got all of it. So 'less youse've got summin' concrete t'tell me, someone t'see or some place t'stake, I'll be on me way."

Another pause. An old trick, he'd found. Let them find the words in the silence after your own; let them put them together in their heads. Even allow them to speak... but never let them finish. The verbal equivalent of letting your opponent get up off the mat, only to put them down again, over and over, until they got the point. Brenk's face reddened and as he opened his mouth-

-Kasoria started to get up.

"Think carefully, mate."
word count: 482

Appearance

  • Habitually dressed in boots, breeches, tunic, and cloak.
  • Long hair down to the shoulders, usually swept back or in a rough ponytail
  • Prefers a trimmed beard and mustache

Mutations

  • Star-shaped scar on each palm.
  • Air around him seems to thicken and become more turbulent the closer a person gets to him.
  • Pitch black eyes, from tear ducts to the pupils.
  • Arms from shoulder to palms appear as if heavy chains are wrapped around them.
  • Wisps of black smoke constantly drifts around his body, forming the rough outline of a cloak. The more agitated he becomes, the thicker the layers get.
    Note: the torch-motif medallion Kasoria wears negates the visible effects of this mutation.
  • Roughly circular pattern across breastbone, constantly transforming, and resettling
  • Sunken, closed eyes in the back of hands; they open when stared at
  • Skin takes on the tone and quality of whatever material he's just Transmuted
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