• Mature • The Man With The Plan

Balthazar and Isabella meet a man advertising the Crafters.

Once an isolated and dying township, an influx of academics, adventurers and thrill seekers have made Scalvoris Town their home. From scholars' tea shops to a new satellite campus for Viden Academy, this is an exciting place to visit or make your home!

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Balthazar Black
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Posts: 2115
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:15 am
Race: Human
Profession: Leader of The Black Cats
Renown: 1830
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Wealth Tier: Tier 5

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The Man With The Plan


3 Ashan 720
"No, that's ridiculous." Isabella said flippantly as she and Balthazar walked through the town square. Balthazar trailed slightly behind Isabella, instinctively watching the city around him more than she did. Isabella had come to Scalvoris Town a few days prior and promised to stay through Balthazar's birthtrial but that left them with the question of what they were going to do? Balthazar was spending more and more time training to be initiated into the Elements and Isabella was trying to establish a customer base in Almund... together they seemed to slow each other's individual progress more than they helped. So Balthazar had put his ear to the ground. He reached out with his feelers to the contacts he'd made in his time in Scalvoris and got a strange report back.

"Well I think purple is a good color on you but if you pick a shade that's too light it won't work." Balthazar cautioned as they arrived at quite the scene. A moderate crowd had gathered around a bald man with a thick beard standing on top of half a barrel. Balthazar tapped Isabella on the shoulder and pointed to a man in the crowd wearing a shirt in just the shade Balthazar was envisioning... the shirt was too small for the man inside it. "It'll look like that."

"Scalvoris is a land for those who built it! For those who have lived here for arcs and will live here for arcs to come!"The man shouted and a few in the crowd shouted in support though some were in protest of him. Balthazar could see the Land Troopers surrounding the square with tense postures. They were worried the situation would escalate and Balthazar had a feeling that was just what the protester wanted. Balthazar wasn't quite versed in the island's politics but he knew enough to know that this had the Element's on edge.

"What did he say? I can't hear him." Isabella asked as she and Balthazar arrived at the back of the crowd that had come together.

"Come on, we'll get closer." Balthazar replied, taking Isabella's arm as he moved into the mass of bodies. The crowd was so fervent that it was hard to move through them but Balthazar's rupture spark gave him a good idea of how to get it done. He weaved and ducked through the crowd, his hand eventually slipping from Isabella's arm down to her hand- which, once he realized, cause Balthazar's face to turn a shade more red. He hid it well though and eventually brought Isabella with him to the front of the crowd.

"Look to Yaralon's cesspool of crime and murder for you're example! Mages and foreigners are a blight on our land! They were sent here by cruel Immortals and if we let them stay then they will rip our homes from beneath us!" Now Balthazar and Isabella could hear the man perfectly and they could hear the crowd somehow turning in favor of him. Isabella seemed to smile at the man's ranting while Balthazar's brow furrowed. He didn't understand it and that which he understood was notably anti-mage... yet Isabella seemed amused.

"He say something funny?" Balthazar asked Isabella loud enough that she could hear him over the crowd that had gathered. Isabella shook her head and leaned closer to Balthazar.

"He doesn't believe what he's saying. It's a script." Isabella informed Balthazar as the man continued ranting. "Listen to his frequency, you'll hear it too." And so Balthazar did as Isabella suggested and began attuning to the man on the barrel's frequency. It wasn't as easy for Balthazar to figure out what Isabella already had and so after a few bits of the man continuing his rant to the crowd and Balthazar trying to find the notes in his frequency to give the impression Isabella had, Balthazar turned to her for help.

"I'm attuned, I don't see it." Balthazar whispered to Isabella who gave him a curious look then whispered back.

"You and I are both liars, Balthazar. Find the note in your own spark, then look for it in his." Isabella instructed and Balthazar nodded. He turned his focus inward and listened for the note of deception in himself. It was always easier to find a note in your own spark than in the spark of others and so with a little dedicated focus, Balthazar was able to recognize the note. From there it became an exercise of matching the note to the one in the man on the barrel and when Balthazar tuned into him again, it was almost comical how easily he could detect the lies.

Balthazar laughed out loud as he realized how right Isabella was- unfortunately loud enough to draw the attention of the man on the barrel who stepped down from the barrel and came over to Balthazar. "Do you mock me, sir?" The man asked, turning the crowd's attention to Balthazar. "Edward Ketchum, avid supporter of the Crafters, and you are?Can you honestly say that Scalvoris is better off with mages than it is without them?"

"Balthazar." Balthazar seriously considered lying to the man but he knew by now that it would be a dangerous idea. At least one person in the crowd that had gathered would have recognized him- well probably, and if even one did and they called him out on his lie things would probably get worse before they got better.

Put on the spot, Balthazar looked to Isabella for help but she made it clear that he'd picked this fight by laughing too loudly and now he'd have to fight it. "I think that mages have done more good than harm here, yes." To that, the man laughed at him. Balthazar crossed his arms and a scowl overtook his face.

"And just what exactly have mages done for us?" Edward posed the question to the crowd more so than to Balthazar. Edward was a clever man and he knew that by making the crowd feel like they were a part of the discussion it would make his message more effective... however he also knew it was absolutely crucial to keep the crowd out of the discussion. Many of them might have supported mages, but it was his job to turn the masses against them.

"I've been on many ships with a Defier," Balthazar began, cleverly masquerading his own acts as if they were the actions of another "I've never sailed on smoother water! And when the pirates came for us it was the Defier on the ship who saved us."

"Saved you?" Edward snapped back quickly "They saved them self. The pirates would have killed them too." Edward had a point. In the heat of the conflict Balthazar had never really stopped to consider if he was saving people because it was right or because he happened to need them to finish his voyage.

"It was a mage who uncovered that Nellie was behind the attacks on her girls in Almund." Balthazar could hear a few murmurs from the crowd in support of what he'd said but he heard and equal number whenever Ketchum spoke up. Isabella remained the silent observer she'd indicated she would be.

"A bunch of whores?" Ketchum replied with false astonishment "Half the men and women here would argue that he actually made things worse for out great city."

"Half the men and women here weren't in Almund being brutalized by the woman employing them." Balthazar said with such hatred laced in his voice that Isabella's eyes widened in surprise. She put a hand on Balthazar's shoulder to try and calm him but recoiled slightly at the shock the contact brought with it. Balthazar moved his hands behind his back as a spark danced across his fingers beyond his control. Don't out yourself as a mage while arguing about mage rights... don't out yourself as a mage while arguing about mage rights... Balthazar kept repeating the words in the back of his mind while the crowd watched Ketchum for his response.

"So self preservation and a little help to the whore population-" Ketchum turned to the crowd as if he expected them to support him.

"Don't call them that." Balthazar insisted. He wasn't sure why he didn't like that word, but he really didn't. That got Ketchum's attention.

"What? Whores?" He stepped closer to Balthazar, noticing a spark arc off of Balthazar from between his neck and shoulder. Ketchum's eyes narrowed as he realized what Balthazar was. "You got a soft spot for whores?"

"Stop. Saying. That. Word." Balthazar repeated each word slowly so that there would be no confusion, no question of whether or not Ketchum heard him. There was a silence that spread over the crowd in anticipation of what would come next. The Land Troopers around the square began moving in to break up the party but they wouldn't reach Balthazar before what happened next. Ketchum stepped closer to Balthazar, really getting in his face.

"Whor-" Balthazar swung his head forward, driving his forehead into Ketchum's nose and causing a loud thud to ring out in the silence. Ketchum fell backwards holding his now bleeding nose as Balthazar stumbled backwards slightly.

"No one wins with a headbutt." Isabella commented as she helped Balthazar steady himself. Nothing could stop the crowd from seeing the sparks bouncing off the angry Balthazar now. Ketchum crawled backwards on the floor while the Land Troopers moved in, dispersing the crowd as they came.

"Look! Look at what mages do! Look at the violence they bring into our society!" Edward had a large smile underneath the hands he was using to hide his mouth. "The Crafters would never allow this to happen! This brutality!" And at that the crowd had been more or less dispersed and the Land Troopers seized Balthazar by the arms. He didn't resist because he knew what he'd done but Isabella didn't seem as content to let them take him... oddly enough neither was Ketchum.

As soon as the actual crowd had dispersed, Ketchum stood up and came to the Land Troopers holding Balthazar. "Let the kid go, I'm not bothered. If you arrested everyone who hit me you'd run out of space in your cells!" Edward said to the troopers loudly before leaning in and whispering something to him. Most wouldn't have spotted it, but Balthazar saw Ketchum slip the trooper a bag of nels... what an odd man. Edward walked over to Balthazar and Isabella once the Land Troopers were dealt with and held out a bag of nels to Balthazar as well. "No hard feelings? I'm paid well to make people agree with my employers. I didn't mean to offend you but whenever there are eyes on- I have to perform." Edward explained quickly. Balthazar shook his head, refusing the nels, and Isabella held out her hand so Edward gave them to her.

"Make people agree?" Balthazar repeated with confusion.

"Yeah, I'm in public relations."

"Public relations?" Isabella repeated in a way similar to Balthazar.

"Yeah, factions higher me to make them look more appealing and cover up their dirtier deeds. So it's nothing personal when I pick fights, just work." Edward explained. "In this case the Crafters paid me to try and help grow their number in Scalvoris Town. They're pretty staunchly against mages and newcomers but I don't get why."

"Don't they want the city to grow?"

"They do but they're pretty sure that they can do it without magic- listen, sorry again but I have to make it to a rally in Almund before tomorrow so I need to catch a ship, see you around." and before either mage could stop him, Ketchum was walking off towards the docks. Balthazar looked at Isabella and Isabella looked at him.

They shrugged.

"Wanna go find that purple dress I was talking about?"

"Sure"
word count: 2045

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Doran
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Posts: 3619
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 3:43 am
Race: Mortal Born
Profession: Alchemist
Renown: 1162
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Wealth Tier: Tier 10

Re: The Man With The Plan

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Balthazar:

Knowledge:
Attunement: Note - Deception
Attunement: Edward Ketchum's Frequency
Endurance x 2
Intelligence: The Crafters
Intelligence: Edward Ketchum, Public Relations

Loot: -
Wealth: -
Injuries: -
Renown: 5. Balthazar attracted attention when he argued with Mister Ketchum.
Magic XP: Yes, for Attunement.
Skill Review: Appropriate to level.
Points: 10
- - -
Comments: I found Mister Ketchum’s speech quite amusing. That what he said was actually a script surprised me. Attunement is quite a useful magic, I have to admit, and you incorporated it well into the thread.

The ensuing conversation between Mister Ketchum and Balthazar where Balthazar talked about his accomplishments (without mentioning that it was actually him) was entertaining, and Mister Ketchum was an interesting NPC.

I also liked the ending (the headbutt and Edward pretending to be irritated only to apologize after the crowd had dispersed and reveal that he got paid to hold such speeches).

That was unexpected!

Enjoy your rewards!
word count: 151

Mutations

N/A

Blessings

N/A

Worn Items

Ring of Reversal
Ring of Immunity
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