The Kraken Returns

The Kraken Returns
Summary: Before reaching the Citadel, a long forgotten Kraken meets the traveling group.
Date: 20/June/2013
Related: None
Fayre Dalyros Krakensteel Roltoff Morganna Samwell 

Deep Forest, North of the Citadel
A camp for the troops in the middle of the forest.
Thu Jun 20, 1329

The sun has set, and darkness has taken over. Lightning bugs flash across the scene as several campsites have been prepared. Soldiers and Knights alike are telling jokes and stories. The night sky is clear, and stars can be seen twinkling in the sky. Dalyros steps out of the tent, moving back to his fire, he begins sprinkling spices and salt on the bird, as the squire turns it over the flames. The Blue Guard then moves back to his log, plopping down on it, before taking a long swig of his wine. He is merely content to stare at the fire.

Roltoff sips his tea as he watches the woman and her ladies divert to where Dalyros is and grins the fun of being the local hero. as he leans back aginast his bed roll and sips his tea alloing his recently healed arm to rest and recover.

Still needing to travel with great haste, Fayre has refused to allow much in the way of grand setup. Camp must be made and broken quickly each day. She shares a small tent with the handmaiden who has been her companion since Aylanora's death, one of the dead princess's former ladies in waiting, who has now made it her life's work to convince Fayre to act more like an entitled heiress.

The princess has, however, been taking care of her horse, much to the lady's chagrin. Fayre has insisted on brushing Fog down, feeding her apples, and checking the mare's hooves all herself, though she needed a little help taking care of the tack. She is just coming back from tending the horse.

"It isn't as though Ayla acted like a priss," she tells the lady. "She went to battle and tended the wounded. And it's not as though anyone will think less of me because I want to see to my own horse. Fog loves me very much and she has been working very hard to get me to and fro, lately, so the least I can do is spend time with her."

Dalyros spots Fayre approaching the camp, and quickly is on his feet. He looks around for a moment, before grabbing at an apple, tossing it in the air, and catching it. He then walks with long strides toward the Princess. He approaches from the rear, and moves up along side of her, quickly offering a bow from his waist. "Your highness." The Blue Guard says with a smile, before holding the apple out toward her, a rare delicacy in a military camp, "Care for an apple?" He asks, his Estermarch accent heavy. He has spring in his step and a sparkle in his eyes. The white linen shirt he is wearing has a little blood showing through on his right side, under his ribcage. A Estermarch wolf hound is following the young Knight closely, his tail wagging and ever vigilant.

Morganna motions for her two followers to head out Roltoff's way but maintains her position near the Blueguard hero. When royalty approaches the Madam curtsies deeply and keeps her ocean hued eyes on the ground. "Your Highness," is all that she says to Princess Fayre - suddenly uncertain as to whether she should be asking to share Dalyros fire. Her being but a lowly whore and all.

The two girls Lily and Sally waltz up to Roltoff. "Lonely tonight good Sir," asks Sally - a buxom brown haired lass of around 19.

Was watching Dalyros and grins as he moves to intecept the heir of the citadel, and is equally shocked to get the nod and smile from fayre. He watches them for abit and blinks as he now has two very attractive ladies talking to him. Roltoff just grins. "A sellswords spot is quite a lonely one ladies. As you can see by how they arrange their camp." he glances over at where sam's tent is set up and hopes the southern prince is doing well. Then looks to the girls his own apparant age and smiels. "Please sit, I dont have much availible but I do have tea if you care to warm up a bit. " The fires not as large as the major camps but its still quite suitable for Roltoff's needs. He pulls over a few Items that will make due for a seat for the two ladies and motions for them to sit down. While he leans agianst his saddle and his bedroll.

Dalyros walks beside the Princess, offering a slight nod of his head in greeting to the head whore. He doesn't pay her much mind beyond that. At Fayre's words of the horses having to share an apple, he smiles, his eyes brightening a bit, "Say, you need more apples?" He doesn't wait for a response, instead, he rushes over to his tent and disappears inside. After only a moment, he returns with a small satchel slung over his shoulder. "I've got a few more apples, your highness." Anything for the Princess, and anything for a horse. He is a Lohstren after all. The squire at Dalyros' camp also offers a bow, all the way to his knee, as the Princess approaches. Across the camp, a fistfight breaks out between two men-at-arms. Dalyros beams widely at the Princess, "You rather enjoy horses, highness?"

A hooded man approaches the fire. Not enough for the light to betray his identity, carefully hidden behind the mask of shadow. A heavy cloak, dark blue, covers his entire body. Perhaps more muscular than it is normal for a person. Perhaps there is more under it than what it is apparent. And there is a sign on his back. A Kraken and a sinking ship, collapsing in a deadly embrace.

The man may have been seen before, in the tourney held in Wolveshire. If not, he may be just an stranger. A silent stranger. Watching the Taniford Princess and the Blue Guard from the shadows of his shadowy figure.

Fayre is grown up. It is an official thing. Still, official declarations do not introduce a girl to certain realities all at once, and if she's ever seen a 'working woman' in her life, she certainly didn't know it. She probably doesn't know it now.

"Good evening," she says to Morgana, only a little bemused. She turns to her mother's champion. "Are we close to a farm? Where did the women come from?" she asks. "I'm surprised Sam didn't insist we stay there. But I'm glad. I doubt I'll have a great many opportunities in future to camp like this. I do miss my own bed a /little/ though."
"How did you come across all those?" she laughs when Dalyros returns with the wealth of apples. "You've been raiding orchards along the way? Well, call it a tax, I suppose. I can levy an apple tax." She's a little wry, but by degrees her mirth is running out. It's all been a little forced.

"I've been riding since I was three. By myself since I was four. Only your own family love them more than the tanifords."

Morganna moves away from the nobles letting them talk walking herself into the shadows with her shawl up. She notices a figure in armor - not foolhardy but confident in her abilities that she'd developed over her dubious past Morganna sneaks towards the figure. Her perfume and clothing may betray her - but not if she stays far enough away.

The well endowed brunette Sally takes a seat next to Roltoff with Lily the pretty green eyed blonde taknig his other side. "Thank you kind sir," says Sally. "I'm Sally - she's Lily - we're with Mistress Morganna travelling back to her pleasure house where we work." High class whores it would seem.

Dalyros laughs lightly at the Princess' words. A nod is given, and even a wink, "Aye, your highness. I am a Blue Guard. I travel… well. There should be plenty of apples for the remuda." He glances toward the stranger, narrowing his eyes a moment. He steps abit closer to the Princess, but figures it is nothing. He shrugs at the thought, before looking back to Fayre, "It is a lovely night, highness. A great night for catching lightning bugs." He laughs and reaches out with his free hand to snatch one out of the air. He then holds it up toward Fayre with a crooked grin, "I love lightning bugs." His words are coming much easier than the night before, when the Knight stumbled for his words. He seems at ease. Maybe he had some wine?

Roltoff glances left and then right as Lily and Sally join him. "uh I see. I'd assume your not that far from your place of work, to be traveling out this late with no escorts. ?" his eyes catch sight of the shadowy figgure and so he watches for a bit but having two full and healthy young ladies on either side of him is quite the distraction.

From behind the hood, and after careful examination, the fire steals a dark bright. Not from the eyes of the stranger… it seems to come from all over his face. As a mask. A helmet. It would explain, as well, the strange form his body seems to have. Steel. Steel is shining from inside.

Still, many soldiers around the camp are armored, aren't they?

But the obscured face moves to stare at the woman who watches him. Not a word is heard. He is as quiet as a statue. A big statue.

Fayre is surrounded by guards and knights and soldiers. A brother, a queen's champion— she's not on her guard. It is rare for the princess to not be watchful for herself, but perhaps she is too unused to the need to be on guard against even the most innocuous of circumstances.

"Oh, don't crush it," she says, peering down into Dalyros's hand and then reaching to it. It may be quite inapropriate for Dalyros to touch her, and somewhat inapropriate for her to touch him, but Fayre does so anyway, using her fingertips to gently guide the lord's fingers open til the little bug can escape. It crawls out to his index finger, lingers a moment, and launches into the air. "When I was little, Darrin used to take me out into the garden at night and we'd catch them. We put them in jars to hang around my room, and he'd have the maids remove them before I woke up so I never knew that they just died." A melancholy silence descends upon her, and she muses a moment, watching the freed insect pulse in the night. "What happened to him…?" she wonders.

Dalyros doesn't seem to be bothered by the Princess touching him, and as she does so, he opens his fingers gently. He watches the bug fly away, a smile slowly spreading on his face. He then looks back to the Princess, listening closely, hanging on every word. He adjusts the satchel on his back, then reaches to feel the hilt of his blade, as if making sure it is still attached to his hip, as his eyes regard the shadowy figure once more. He watches for a moment, before looking back to Fayre, "Highness, your brother has been consumed by the darkness. But you should remember your brother for what he /was/, and not for what he has become. I knew your brother, he was a good man." A sigh escapes his lips as he thinks back to a moment he had with Darrin in years past. He looks toward the herd of horses, and slowly walks in that direction, though the shadowy figure certainly has him on edge. He remains calm, confident. This fool wouldn't attack the Princess, not with a whole camp of guards nearby. Would he?

Morganna remains passive hidden watching the dark figure suspiciously. The redhead doesn't like when things are out of place and this fellow seemed more than a little unusual. After a while she decided to try and get a bit closer. Edging silently towards the helmeted man.

"Where we work and where we play good Sir - but the road offers certain opportunites for both," Sally says slyly. Lily moves a bit closer to the fire her blonde hair glistening.

Roltoff nods as he listens to Sally and lily . He reachs past lilly and in doing so his hand brush's her fine firm rear as he grabs his bow and quiver and draws both much closer. " I see, so if the work doesn't come to you, go to the work.?" he grins softly and cant help but admire the assets of both ladies.

From inside his tent, another knight approaches the gathered ones. Tall, covered in a silver armor with a royal sigil on his chest. Samwell Taniford, smiling after a brief nap, spots his sister, a Blue Guard, a sellsword he knows well, and three ladies, still unknown. His sword, Altheara's Vengeance, rests sheathed but always at hand. But before he can spare proper salutes, the presence of a hooded man freezes him for the moment.

And he, the mysterious stranger, moves a little closer to the nearest lady. The man knows he is being watched. He doesn't care to hide it. The Kraken on his back waves as if mirroring the passing wind.

The hood moves as well, and if being watched carefully, the face of a monster can be spotted. There is no other way to describe it. A monster forged in steel, staring from dead eyes. But the monster is not a statue. He moves closer to her, more and more closer. His body is certainly bigger than that of Morganna.

"It was the Northern Princess, and being amongst Rhaedans that corrupted him," Fayre says softly as she begins walking toward the horses again. "They are all descended from a murderer, after all. And it is Kerilyn who wished to be queen. We will bury what is left of Darrin, for /he/ is dead."

Dalyros continues to listen intently to the Princess. However, when she finishes her words, he doesn't respond. His eyes narrow once more on the shadowy figure, looking him over closely. It may not be right for the Knight to touch the Princess, but touch he does, as he reaches for her arm to pull her behind him, attempting to put himself between her and the dark man in the shadows. "Halt!" He shouts across to the figure, "Who goes there?" He keeps his free hand behind himself to ensure he knows where the Princess is at, while his other hand grabs at his greatsword, sliding it from the scabbard with a loud *SHINK*, metal scraping against metal. "Identify yourself stranger!" His greatsword is held out in front of the Blue Guard, as the Knight twists it in his hand, getting a quick feel for it, or perhaps trying to intimidate. Either way, he looks more than capable.

Oddly enough, it's the uneasiness of her horse that Fayre notices first. Perhaps not odd, though, seeing as they have drawn near to the animal. "Perhaps a storm coming?" she wonders, as she looks over her shoulder. Something does not feel right, however. Something does not /look/ right. It is now that that strange figure registers in her mind.
And that new feeling she had just begun to understand when the first hint of Darrin's involvement in her sister's death rears its head again. Paranoia.

"Who is that man?" Her tone is sharp but quiet. Why should a man in her camp be hooded?

Dalyros seems to hone in on the oddity as she does, and soon she is peering around his shoulder.

Foolish perhaps but there is steel in the Madam's spine she holds her ground against the advancing monster her ocean blue eyes regarding his 'dead' ones impassively. She folds her arms about her lovely body to keep herself warm. "Nice armor Sir," is all that the redheaded vixen can be heard to remark. "Seems you are getting some attention…" she says as the others begin to react to his presence.

Lily smiles at the attention from Roltoff - but both girls turn to see what the commotion is cutting off the potentially torrid encounter prematurely.

Roltoff raises up to a knee as he readies his bow, and quickly notches an arrow. His blade and shield are nearby but for now he readies and doesn't draw the arrow back until he's sure of a clear shot and the mans a threat. For roltoff it feels good to have his bow back in his hands, as it feels like an extension of himself.

A wild horse approaches hastily. Black as the night without stars, the same ebon beast Samwell has been riding as of late. It approaches the fire, nevertheless. The fire and the stranger. The Taniford Prince, not far from them and still watching the events from the entrance of his tent, lets out a little smirk. "So, that was it." he mutters to himself.

The smirk transforms into a laugh, but the laugh doesn't come from the commander of the Blue Guard. The laugh, mad and loud, comes as a cloak opens and finally falls, thrown to the fire.

Dark sea blue is his armor. Equally dark tentacles fall to his chest. Full plate. The head of a Kraken is forged in the helmet, with the eyes of the monster matching those of the warrior inside. A visor that only projects shadow, hiding his gaze from the outside world. The hand of the monstrous knight falls to caress the pommel of his sword, very slowly.

For those who attended the tourney in Wolveshire, his identity may not be so mysterious. Sir Nydan Krakensteel, winner of the joust event, but never seen without his particular attire. If he has an affiliation, it is unknown. If that is his real name, nobody knows. But at the sight of naked steel, the caress turns into a tight hold of his blade.

Dalyros takes a few steps closer toward the man, his free hand still behind his back, making sure the Princess doesn't get bullheaded and step around the young Knight. "Why are you in this camp?" demands the Queens Champion. He twists the blade in his hand, the steel glinting in the firelight. "Announce your motives!" His step is confident, his gaze steady, as he approaches slowly. "We have no quarrel with you, now depart from here, at once!"

At the sudden burst of movenment more than anything else Morganna backs away from the imposing figure a few steps. Given that hand has been placed on steel - the Madam is a lover not a fighter. Her two charges merely watching on helplessly as the redhead edges away from the strange knight.

Roltoff gets a few more arrows set up so that he can quickly grab and fire should the armored knight many any hostile moves. The bow slowly raised up as he keeps a steady eye on the one called kracken.

"I need no motif to be here, young man." the knight of the Kraken answers. His voice distorted by the echo of the helmet, and probably a bit of it is intentional as he speaks. "But I can say I'm here for something that is mine. And, perhaps, I'm here as a reminder." the monstrous helmet turns to watch Morganna for a long instant. "To remind you, Dalyros Lohstren, that your enemies are not only those who are apparent." the free gauntleted hand raises, as if willing to caress the woman's cheek, but stopping far enough to avoid any contact. "Your enemies are watching you right now, Queen's Champion." and a sound that reminisces a laugh comes as his words fade away.

The cloak burns in the fire.

The ebon horse, now strangely calmed, awaits in silence.

And the Prince of Taniford approaches the couple of Princess and Blue Guard, placing a hand on his sister's shoulder, but preferring to stay in silence.

"Will you use that toy of yours, sir?" Krakensteel offers entertained. "Or will you let a mercenary, who was all the time by the side of your Princess, to do it for you?" a quick glance slips to Roltoff, just before returning to the Lohstren.

Dalyros pulls his spare hand to his greatsword, grabbing it now with both hands as he feels the Prince's presence. Dalyros isn't surprised that the soulless freak knows his name. Why shouldn't he? After all, he /is/ Dalyros Lohstren. The blade spins around the body of the Knight for a moment before the Blue Guard responds, "Aye, you may need no motive for being here, but as that is the case, I need no motive to remove your head from your shoulders, sir." He doesn't seem intimidated by the figure as he approaches.

Fayre is deeply confused. She was not present fro most of the tourney, and has been in the dark about so much. Of course she had heard of the strange knight who made such a stir. Still, there's no explanation as to what it's all about.

"What's happening?" she asks her brother, and then— wait. Why does she need to ask her brother as if she's a little girl. She moves suddenly, overbold and growing angry, attempting to step around Dalyros and Samwell. "What is the meaning if this?" She addresses the intruder himself.

Morganna holds her ground and lets the strange man paw her - obviously used to allowing her wiles get her out of trouble in more than a few situation's. Even if she is exercising them passively. Her two charges seem rather more distraught. She rolls her ocean hued eyes once hoping that this will end better than it had started. She does not vocally interject.

Nydan laughs at the Lohstren's words, glancing at Morganna as he speaks. "You will cut the wrong person's head, sir. Well, /that/" he grins from inside his helmet, "If you are good enough." the sword is taken out as fast as a lightning. The blade, finely crafted, is taken back in half circle in aggressive stance, ready to hit his target. But still, he doesn't seem to want to strike first.

From beside the Crown Princess, another sword is taken out. "He is not an enemy." Samwell says quietly, holding his sword and standing firm. "I am not an enemy." the knight of the Kraken repeats, now more calmly, and watching in the commander of the Taniford army's direction. "There won't be fights in my camp. You should depart now. You will have what is yours… in time." the Prince says in cold voice. A long stare between him and Nydan takes place. Many heartbeats of silence die slowly.

"I shall depart now." the man in monstrous helmet mutters and returns his sword to its sheath. "Your Highness." he nods to the Taniford knight. "Your Highness." a deeper nod of his head is given to the Princess. To Dalyros there is not a spoken farewell.

"You too." Samwell says to the Lohstren. "Keep your sword hidden. Keep your temper cold." and Altheara's Vengeance disappears from sigh as its wielder turns to return to his tent.

"Someone WILL answer me," Fayre says, managing a tone that is nothing short of imperious. She's been kept in the dark about a lot of things, and seems to have had enough. "What does this man want, Samwell?"

Dalyros does a half-turn, looking from the Kraken to the Prince. He doesn't seem to know what to do for a moment, stunned by the latest turn of events. He opens his mouth to say something, then closes it again. After several moments, he stuffs his sword away. He then turns his attention to Fayre, looking her over a moment, "Are you alright?" He steps closer, looking over his shoulder toward the departing spirit, then back to the Princess. As she speaks, he stops dead in his tracks, looking toward Samwell's tent. One thing is certain, Dalyros doesn't have a clue what just happened.

Samwell stops and turns again to his sister. He blinks. And blinks once more. "He is Nydan Steel - Krakensteel, I mean. One of the best knight I have known, and certainly not an enemy. Perhaps… perhaps we will need him in the future, Fayre. But one thing is certain." he sighs and looks to the fire. "There are more enemies than those who are apparent. And you don't have to worry. He is not there, anymore."

Indeed. The knight of the Kraken has left the camp. The ebon horse stands quiet and peaceful. The Prince nods with a smile to Dalyros and the Princess and proceeds to his tent.

And the cloak, the cloak still burns.

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