Author Topic: Pentagathus' Stories.  (Read 2367 times)

Pentagathus

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Pentagathus' Stories.
« on: June 08, 2013, 03:26:52 PM »
Whenever I get around to start writing on a story I usually stop for a while and then forget where I was going with it, so I thought if I try to post my crap here fairly regularly then I might actually get some writing written. These won't necessarily be war stories, but I imagine violence will be fairly prevalent throughout so this is probably the best place to bung them.
Currently I'm writing about a man called Niko, in a world that is still largely unplanned but is the one I wrote about in Jubal's worldbuilding course. I have a vague story thought out but it takes me ages to actually write stuff out.

Here's the first part, I'm afraid I haven't read through it yet so its probably full of spelling and grammatical errors and is probably armadillo but hey:

Niko dropped over the wall, swayed on his feet and then collapsed quietly into a corner, landing on something soft. He pulled his hood over his head and lay flat, although it would have been difficult to spot him in such dim moonlight even if he was stark bollock naked and doing his renowned chicken dance.
“Can’t get caught” he thought to himself as he resisted the urge to vomit “no, not in this state, I’d be disgraced.” Then he remembered where he was, and why he was there.  No one knew him, and no one would care.
Once he had come to this rather miserable epiphany Niko raised his heavy head from the dirt and for the first time since jumping the wall had a look around and where he’d landed. He was indeed in a corner, the corner of a small courtyard. A few broken barrels and crates were jumbled in a heap in front of him. The wall that went straight ahead of him only carried on for a few paces before ending in a closed wooden gate with a thick crossbar set on this side. The wall at his feet went on towards his left and joined up with a large wooden building, square shaped, twice his height, thatched and apparently windowless. Drunk as he was, it still did not take Niko long to realise the building was a warehouse and that the courtyard was empty.  He started to rise and noticed the soft thing he’d landed on seemed to be a large pile of sack cloth.
He had got halfway to standing when he stopped suddenly. A dark figure had just crept out of the warehouse and was heading towards the courtyard gate. Niko swiftly threw himself flat again, just turning his head enough to watch the newcomer, and so avoided the notice of this dark figure as he cautiously swept his gaze around the courtyard.
As the figure turned towards the gate and started lifting the heavy bar from it Niko quietly burrowed into the pile of sack cloth, not knowing what was afoot but not wishing any part of it.
As Niko watched, the man set the bar aside and swung the gates open slightly. A group of three more men crept in, similarly clad in dark cloaks with hoods or hats over their heads. The largest of the three unshuttered a lantern as he came in, revealing a shaggy head of hair and a thick beard. He drew a sword, single edged and thick, and turned towards the rest of the group. They too revealed weapons; one had an axe, one a club and the one whom had come from the warehouse pulled out a long knife with a curved end.  Niko was now fervently regretting that he’d sold his own sword, and even more fervently regretting that he’d spent so much of the proceeds on strong drink.
“Carl” said the swordsman as he held out the lantern to the axe man “check around, make sure no one’s waiting for us.” Axeman nodded, took the lantern and strode off around the courtyard, peering into the corner opposite Niko. Niko wormed his way further into the sack cloth.
“Ferret, go out and wait for them on the river road, I doubt they’ll come that way, unless he’s planning a surprise for us. Whistle if you see anyone.” The knife bearer nodded and passed out of the gate. 
“Len, you wait for them on the main road, only whistle if there are more than two of them. Hail them loud enough for us to hear if two show up.” Clubman passed out of the gate.
The lantern was heading towards Niko’s corner now. Niko thought of fleeing but doubted he would be fast enough on his unsteady feet, so instead he buried his face into the sack cloth, squeezed his eyes shut tight and prayed to remain undetected.
The axeman’s soft footsteps crept closer, and then stopped. A quiet knocking sound reached him, as if the axeman was rooting around in the heap of broken crates.  Time dragged on, flowing slower than molten wax until eventually the axeman’s soft footsteps moved away.
“It’s empty” axeman’s voice sounded thin and nervous.
“Good” replied the swordsman, and that was all that was said for some time. Niko had no idea how long he waited there, time was hard to tell when you’re hiding from armed men and drunk as a newt.
Eventually a rough voice called out strong and clear “evening good sirs, care to follow me?” and the gate was pushed wide open. The clubman strode in with a grin on his face, revealed by the light of the lantern that was still held by the axeman. He was shortly followed through by a stern looking man, tall and broad shouldered with a bare long sword held out before him. Behind this man came another, shorter and broader of belly rather than broad of shoulder, but with a strong posture and an angry cast to his face.
“Where is she?” growled the shorter man “I brought the money, bring her out now” he demanded.
The scruffy swordsman chuckled softly “ah you seem to have misunderstood my message. I do not have her, but that money will buy the information as to who does, and where.
The shorter man stepped forward as if to launch an attack, but his companion placed a hand on his shoulder as if to steady him and he stopped where he was, much to the amusement of the clubman and the swordsman. The axeman had taken a small step back, and looked terrified by the whole affair.
The scene was interrupted then, by a voice coming from above Niko “no one on the riverway boss”.  Niko’s eyes widened as he realised what was happening, and what was about to happen. Sure enough the knifeman’s boot came down on Niko’s shoulder as he clambered down off the wall.
“What” the knifeman said as he tripped on Niko and almost fell, but he did not get to finish his sentence as Niko leapt up at once, grabbed him by the collar and threw him down hard. The knifeman’s back hit the ground and Niko got hold of his head and smashed it into the wall. The knifeman’s whole body slumped; Niko took his knife from him, stood up and turned towards the gate. Everyone was looking at him in surprise.
“Carl you prick” growled the scruffy swordsman before launching himself at the other swordsman.  The clubman cursed and ran towards Niko whilst the axeman seemed to be rooted to the spot.
Niko did not like his chances, he was bigger than his opponent and a good fighter, but he was drunk as hell and armed only with the long knife and his own dagger.
But he had nowhere to run to, so he stood his ground and managed to evade the club’s first swing. He lashed out with the knife but the club came up and struck Niko’s hand hard, making him drop the knife with a curse. Niko’s other hand darted out and grabbed hold of the club, then he pulled himself close to the clubman and swung his battered left hand out over the clubman’s back to catch him around the waist. Niko twisted sharply, lifting his opponent of his feet and bearing him down to the ground. Niko landed on top, knocking the air out of his opponent. Niko now pulled his own dagger from his sheaf and stabbed up into the clubman’s neck.  Warm blood sprayed into his face and over his hand. Niko cursed and rolled away from the dying clubman.
Getting up he saw the fight seemed to be over, the tall swordsman was pulling his blade out of the scruffy swordsman’s chest whilst the axeman was clambering over the wall to get away from the angry looking man who had also pulled out a longsword.
Both of the surviving men turned towards Niko, and he saw they were wearing mail under their cloaks. “Who are you? What are you doing here?”  asked the shorter, angry looking man.
“M names Niko” he slurred “an I can’t remember.”
“What’s wrong with you? Do you take me for a fool?”
“I think he’s been struck on the head sir” said the tall man who was moving cautiously towards Niko with his sword in front of him “probably concussed.”
“Yeah, hit my head with club” Niko lied, glad to have something to blame his current state upon other than drunkenness.
“Right, well you sit down and stay there, I’ll keep my eye on you. Gill search the bodies, and see if that first bandit is alive.”
Gill, the tall man swiftly checked the two corpses “nothing but their weapons and a few coppers in their pockets sir” and then strode into the corner where Niko had been hiding. “This one’s alive sir, and waking up I think.”
“Good” his master called “I’ll question him, you guard this fellow.”
Gill strode towards Niko as his master moved off into the corner. “Drop your knife and stand up” Niko did so “walk to that corner” Gill pointed towards the corner furthest from his master, where the wall met the warehouse. He then told Niko to sit with his back to the wall, so Gill could watch both Niko and the gate at the same time.
“How are you feeling?”
“Like I need to vomit”
Gill gave a wry smile “Aye, I’ve been there, nasty to get a blow to the head.”
They sat there in silence for a while, waiting for Gill’s master to finish with his captive. Niko could hear him talking, but couldn’t make out most of the words. Before long Gill’s master came to them, leading the captive in front of him. “Bind his hands Gill, we’ll take him to my dye works, and this Niko too so we can see if he remembers why he’s here.” He stood watch as Gill bound the captive’s hands together and then led them out of the gate, walking in single file with Niko behind the captive and Gill behind Niko with his sword at the ready. Once out of the gate they went along the main road, which Niko thought led away from this slum district.
“Where’d he say we’re going?”
“The dye works. They’re out away from the slums, on the edge of the crafts district. You don’t sound like you’re a native.”
“I’m not, I got here this afternoon.”
“Well then Niko, welcome to Wyngard” said Gill, and the smile was plain to hear in his voice.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2013, 03:29:46 PM by Pentagathus »

Scarlet

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Re: Pentagathus' Stories.
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2013, 07:37:51 PM »
Write more? :)

It sounds really good :) It's confusing and intriguing me little which is always a good sign :P
like a bruise that would never go away, but she would cherish it for ever.

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Pentagathus

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Re: Pentagathus' Stories.
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2013, 09:10:31 PM »
Its intriguing you little?  :'( 
Should I have used the bandits names instead of calling them swordsman axeman etc? It seems kinda awkward now I read it.

Pentagathus

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Re: Pentagathus' Stories.
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2013, 06:29:51 PM »
Eh so here's the stuff I wrote last night, was going to try to finish this story and read through/edit it before posting, but I've got not much writing done today.


Niko was feeling much better by the time they reached the dye works. He’d been sick twice, both times spattering the bandit which Gill had found both amusing and a cause for concern. Gill seemed nice, so Niko had told him so. Repeatedly.
The dye works had turned out to be, well, a dye works. A fairly standard workshop, as well as Niko could tell; there were vats for water and vats for dyes, there were bolts of cloth to be dyed and there were dyed cloths left out to dry. The place was largely empty at this hour, although there were a couple of elderly servants who seemed to have been waiting for their master’s return. One was a man, introduced as Oswald, the other a woman named Hilde.
Oswald, Gill and their master soon disappeared with the captive, apparently to secure him in a cellar and question him further. Hilde was asked to tend to Niko, and told he seemed to have a serious concussion.
“Come along then” she said, leading him towards a table with a large bowl of steaming water and various implements laid out upon it “sit down now.” He took the seat she offered and studied her closely.
Her voice was not thin and wavering as he’d expected and she sounded utterly unperturbed by the arrival of her master with two bloodied men and a vomit flecked captive. Her hair was grey, thin and wispy and her face was deeply lined with wrinkles. Her frame was frail looking, but there was no weakness in her keen grey eyes or her leathery little hands which searched around his head for any lumps.
Suddenly her hands stopped and she drew her face close to him, sniffing at him.
“Wynd’s mists, but you smell like a brewery lad, if I didn’t trust master Aldhiem’s word I’d guess you’d been hit with vodka rather than a club.”
Niko shifted his feet uneasily “err, well actually to tell you the truth wise lady, I have been drinking tonight and I don’t think I received any blow to the head. I don’t usually buy strong drink but I, I..” he faltered, not wanting to say why things were different these days.
“Huh, well I’ve seen plenty of men in your state before, but it’s a nice change to see one who’s ashamed of it. Well I think we can deal with that, you go into the next room along there and get a kettle of water from the hearth, I’ll prepare an infusion to settle your belly and maybe clear your head.”
Niko wandered off in the direction she’d pointed towards, coming to an open doorway beyond which was a dark room, ill lit by a small fire huddled into the corner of a large hearth. It was only then that he thought to wonder at how Hilde’s room was lit so brightly. He turned back and looked to see that hung above Hilde’s table was a small glass sphere with a strange grey smoke inside which seemed to be emitting a steady white light. He’d seen such lamps before, but was surprised to see one now as they were very rare, and very costly.
He shrugged and turned back to the hearth, there was indeed a kettle sat there steaming away fiercely. He lurched towards it, glanced around and found a length of thick, charred cloth to wrap around the kettle’s handle. Carefully he lifted the kettle, and with just as much care he walked back to Hilde and set the kettle down.  She smiled at him, amused at his caution. She dropped a posset of herbs into the kettle, almost immediately releasing a scent that was familiar to Niko, although he hadn’t smelt it for a long while.
“Liquorice?”
Hilde nodded and he smiled wide, sinking into his seat feeling truly grateful. He was half way through his second mug when Oswald arrived with a clean jerkin and cloak in his arms. “Master Aldhiem sent these if you wish to change, and requests your presence if you are recovered enough.”
“Thank you sir, and thank you too wise lady, I am feeling much better than I was.”
“Bah, Oswald is no sir and I am no lady, Hilde is I and Oswald is he. Here, wash your face if you wish” she nudged the bowl of steaming water beside here.
Niko thanked her again and dunked his head into the warm water with glee. He scrubbed roughly at his face and tore off his bloodied clothes, revealing a lean torso and bronze hued skin marred with many scars, some pale and thin, others thick and ropy. He dressed quickly, bowed to Hilde and followed Oswald into the hearth room. Oswald led him across the room to where an open trapdoor led down under the floor. Niko headed down the steps alone and came into the cellar, which was lit by another glass lamp and smelled of many strange things. Crates and barrels were stacked along all the walls, but one corner was clear and here sat Aldhiem and Gill, with their captive now gagged and bound hand and foot lying nearby.
“I have learned much of use from this vagabond, but he seems to know nothing about you, mysterious Niko. So tell me, who do you serve and what was your purpose tonight?”
“I have no master at this time, and really I had no purpose.”
“So why were you at that warehouse and why did you attack these bandits?”
Niko thought quickly, and tried to remember what little he had heard that night. “Well, I was in the courtyard as I’d overheard them plotting and was curious to hear more” the lie came smoothly. “I attacked them as it was clear they were up to nothing good and I feared they would kill me once they’d noticed me.”
Aldhiem studied him intently. “So what did you overhear, and what were you doing in that area in the first place?”
“I was simply taking in the city and had lost myself, I am new to Wyngard. As to what I overheard, I’m afraid I do not know for sure, but it seemed to be that they… that they had kidnapped a woman and were holding her ransom” he was guessing now, pretty much shooting into the dark.
His guess turned out to be more accurate than he could have hoped, for Aldhiem nodded and simply said “yes.” He was then quiet for a while, before he looked up at Niko as if weighing him up.
He nodded again, and bade Niko sit beside him and Gill.
“Yes, my daughter has been taken from me. She disappeared this morning, and soon we received a message from these scum that if I met them in that warehouse tonight with no more than one man and with no less than one hundred schillings I would be told where she was. And then you showed up, and saved me one hundred schillings it seems, for which I am grateful and for which I owe you.” He reached into a pouch by his side and withdrew a handful of silver coins “ten schillings for you now, and more if you can help me further.”
Niko thanked him, took the money and then chewed his lip. “What sort of help do you now need? And why do you need my help, surely there is a Watch in this city?”
“Yes, there is a Watch here, of which my brother is a captain. He has been inquiring quietly all day, and it seems a young watchman was seen leaving the city in plain clothes at dawn, with a woman all bundled up with her head covered. I think this woman was my daughter, and I know already some of the watchmen are in league with thieves and bandits. My brother can be trusted, but the others may send word to the kidnappers if I ask for their help. So this must be done quietly, using my own folk and some of my brother’s people.”
“I am neither, so why use me?”
“Because you say you are new here, so the kidnappers should not suspect you work for me, and you are clearly not working for these men. However, I cannot be sure you do not belong to one of my rivals within the city, so I will need to know who you travelled in with, and where to find them.”
“I was escorting a caravan, led by a merchant called Fiere Roen. Last time I saw him he was at an inn, the Armoured Hog.”
Aldhiem nodded and rose to his feet “Gill will go there now, and check with this merchant” he took another small handful of coins and handed them to Gill “I doubt he will be impressed with being woken at this hour, so offer him some recompense.” Gill bowed his head to his master and strode off with a wave of the hand to Niko. 
Aldhiem now turned to Niko again “you will stay here tonight, and keep watch of our captive. If your story is true then you shall leave the city at dawn with some of my men.” He went to leave, getting as far as the steps before turning back “oh and Niko, as you do not know the city, you will not know me. So let me tell you now, serve me truly and you will be rewarded well. Betrayal I will reward too, as it deserves.”
He left with that, taking the glass lamp with him. When he reached the trap door it was swung shut, leaving Niko and the captive in complete darkness. From above he heard a dull thump, as if something heavy had been dropped onto a trap door.

Scarlet

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Re: Pentagathus' Stories.
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2013, 07:35:11 PM »
Mis-typed! Intriguing me a little! Sorry!

And more and more.. I do like it :)
like a bruise that would never go away, but she would cherish it for ever.

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