Dragon Rider IC
All things truly wicked start from an innocence.
- Ernest Hemingway
The time has come to find where your loyalties lie.
For more information visit - http://rpdragonrider.weebly.com/
For the OOC check - http://roleplayerguild.com/showthrea...53#post8558853
For the Interest Check - http://roleplayerguild.com/showthrea...and-Adventure)
- - - Updated - - -
The city of Falone. A place filled with masked balls and feasts. It was a posh life that suited nobles, kings, queens and the rest of their kin, but it was not the kind of life sixteen year old Astrath Xeusthon wanted. He sat on the porch of their two-story home and gazed down at the streets of Falone that were bustling with life. Cheery yells and the sound of children laughing made their way to his ears and it put a smile on the boy's face.
He was a tall fellow with a lithe build. His amber eyes radiated kindness as the wind ruffled up his blue hair. The boy's pale complexion was proof that he rarely went out and that was true. He craved adventure, but his parents were both nobles and they didn't want their son to go on silly endeavors. They wanted him to get an education and follow in their footsteps. But to his dismay he wanted none of that. Ast wanted to leave his own mark on the ever-changing world.
He knew it was a place filled with both dangers and wonders, but still he wanted to be a part of it.
Falone was a pristine place filled with everything a person could ever want, but no adventure thrived within the city. In fact that most exciting thing that ever happened within its gates was the annual masked ball or the once in a while play that depicted knights slaying foul beasts known as dragons.
Ast found himself smiling. The flying lizards were nothing but myths right? But they piqued his interest and he would occasionally daydream about them.
Yesterday however had changed his mind, a wandering knight had stopped by Falone's gates and begun sharing tales of his adventures to all who were willing to listen. He claimed that he had seen an actual dragon with his own eyes. This of course captured Ast's attention and soon he and knight were locked in a conversation about the mythical creature. Ast had arrived home filled with enthusiasm, in fact he told his parents all about it, but they only responded by calling the knight a crazy drunk and reprimanding him for even speaking with the 'lunatic' of a knight.
That was when Ast decided that he would leave Falone at midnight. He was sixteen, and old enough to take care of himself. He left a note, stating how sorry he was, but he told his parents he needed to find his own path. The boy packed what he could in a makeshift knapsack and left.
He hitched a ride with a messenger and found himself in the nearby city of Zul, which was home to countless forests.
A silent field with but a single calm breeze to break the silence as it moves trough the grass. A small pack of doe grazing in the sun with only a single one keeping lookout before grazing as well. Thought constantly vigilant listening to every sound. With ears flinging and shifting to the slightest change to again raise its head to look around toward the direction of the sounds. Suddenly twitching in reaction to a change, but all to late before the sharp sound of an arrow piercing flesh is heard, and one of the Doe calves let out a quick cry before falling to the ground. The Heard quickly scattering following after the sentry that leads, leaving the calf behind as they are too worried about their own lives. As it gets quiet and empty the single body remains on the ground.
And then a single Elf walk out from the nearby forest, crouching down near the fallen calf she strokes its hide gently with her hand and remove the arrow. Whispering something in elvish about how she thank it for the food it have given and send a soft prayer to the moon goddess to take care of it in the great beyond. Then Using a cloth to clean the arrow before checking it and finally put it back into its quiver, Then wrapping the cloth around its wound before lifting it up and carrying it back into the forest over her shoulders. Its not before being in the safety of the forest she takes out her dagger and begin to carve pieces of flesh from the doe. Taking anything edible and leaving the rest to the animals of the forest before moving on. Taking it home to the hungry that prepares it for dinner and then again set out on a Journey. Filling her own belly before setting out and then her adventure would begin.
Calmly walking with the paths of the forest Sana could easily find her way to exactly where she wanted to be, day by day she moved closer and closer to the human settlement known as Zul, Making her way through the countless forests still untouched by mankind. Coming far away from her home she felt a little more discomfort about leaving her people, but there was something about this place that seemed to draw her closer. And it was not before long she actually stopped for the first time and quickly drew her breath. Without thinking to much about it as she moved through the new and strange forests she could see a road ahead of her, but it was not because of the road she reacted. It was the things on the road that made her draw her breath, quickly and accurately scaling the trunk of a large nearby tree she managed to slip into the shadows.
From the higher height and the shadows she would watch in secret as a single cart rolled down the road, drawn by horse and driven by a human she knew it was better to not get seen, Most humans did not react kindly to elves and according to her knowledge was a very destructive people. On the back of the cart was grass, and she guessed that the Human was a farmer. Thought as it finally passed she heard the sounds of hooves in the distance and remained where she was. The Silhouette of another man came into view and soon she could see that there was two humans on the same horse. One was taller and was controlling the horse, and behind him was a smaller human, She guessed it was a Human Child by its appearance. And futhure down the road she could see the the forests end and the distant smoke from the City of Zul.
In the concealment of the shadows, she was near perfectly hidden, just as anyone could say about Elves in general was their ability to hide in forests, Her long black hair blending in with the darkness, and her soft agile body being able to adjust to the shape of the surrounding to hide behind its forms. With eyes adapted to see a long distance she could observe from this location without many at all being able to notice. And as the Rider with the boy behind him had passed, she let her body softly and slowly slide down to the branch. She started breathing slowly again in relaxation as it seemed like she had not been spotted. Now all that remained, was for her to figure out what to do next...
The cart jolted to a stop right in front of a forest. Ast hopped off the cart and smiled at the messenger. "Thanks a lot mister~!" The sixteen year old mage chirped enthusiastically. He dug into his pocket and pulled out a few coins. "Will this be enough for it?" He asked in an unsure tone of voice. Ast had never left Falone, so he was oblivious to almost everything. Prices being one of those things.
The messenger was a lean and lanky man in his mid thirties he had a head of messy brown hair and kind blue eyes. He scratched his cheek then replied with a chuckle. "No need to pay kid-" he stared at Ast then gave him a slight thumbs up. "You'll need every coin if you're serious about making it in the real world. You won't get anywhere without money...trust me and save up you've got a long journey ahead." The man gave his horse a pat on the head and reached out to ruffle Ast's hair. "This ain't even the beginning yet."
"O-Oh!" The boy bowed politely. "I will, I'll definitely keep your words in mind. Thanks mister, I really mean it." Ast gave the man one of his huge and goofy looking smiles. "If the real world is full of people like you then I'm sure it isn't such a bad place, right?"
The man shook his head in reply. "Nope, it's dangerous kid. I'd try to convince you, but it seems like you really wanna go. Do you know even know how to fight?" He mumbled as he stared Ast up and down. He wasn't strong looking and he was way too innocent. Naive... perfect for tricking.
"I'll assure you mister. I can take care of myself just fine." He nodded his head, the childlike smile glued to his face.
"If you say so..." The messenger sighed and dug his heels into the side of his horse. The sound of clattering hooves echoed throughout the quiet night and the horse ambled farther and farther away. "Take care, kiddo." The man mumbled before the darkness eventually concealed him.
Ast cupped both hands around his mouth. "I will, don't worry about me!" He yelled into the darkness. Eventually the clattering of hooves died down and Ast was alone...well, as far as he knew he was by himself. The sixteen year old took in a deep breath and tried to look as brave as he possibly could. Which was easier said than done. "I-I can do this." He mentally scolded himself for stammering then took his first steps into the forest. At first it had been fine, but after minutes of walking in darkness the boy felt claustrophobic. He held out his hand and mumbled a quick spell. A bright light began to emanate from his palm and he trudged onward in search of...what? Well, he didn't know either.
Zahef had not the tiniest clue where he was, though seeing a forest beyond the hole that Bahema had created at least was a welcome sight, it meant life existed in this land, for where there was forest there was certainly animals who could be used for food if he gets hungry. He pulled himself up out of this hole and situated himself with his cloak, straightening it out so nothing was raised and revealing anything that he wanted to be cautious about, then turned and nelt at the edge of the hole, reaching in to give bahema a little affectionate rub on him muzzle, recieving a soft un-earthly churrl in response before the ground began to fill in and make the hole simply look at though someone had filled in a hole recently. He was far from any sort of place that could be called home, and had no form of 'money' by this lands definition, nor anything that could hint at 'what' existed around here... It was kindof exhilerating to find himself in an unknown land.
With his equipment tied to his back in a large pack, he pulled the cloak tightly just incase, and went about observing his surroundings, it was a simple forest from the looks of things, and it was night, though his eyes managed to pick up enough detail to see everything clearly, and soon he started off in a random direction "Time to get to work I suppose..." He was quite cautious with himself, frequently stopping behind large tree's to peek around and make sure he wasn't being hunted or anything, however, his attention shifted when he spotted a small light in the distance, ceasing movement for a time and glaring at it to pick at whatever detail he could see. The distance made detail nearly non-existant, but something resembling a hand seemed to be under it, which hinted at magic, and told him at least that it was something Sentient passing through the forest just as he was, regardless, it was his duty to explore this land and find out everything he could, so best to approach, if it turned out to be a threat, then he could probably just crush it, or have Bahema swallow it up from below.
With that in mind he moved towards it, trying to avoid ending up 'behind' whatever it was to avoid seeming like he was stalking it, and steadily moved closer until he found himself close enough to pick out more precise detail, finding a small fleshy thing, compared to whom Zahef was practically a giant, though he'd learned not to underestimate things for being smaller than he was a long time ago. Suddenly he spoke out, his voice decidedly gutteral and somewhat inhuman soudning, but easily clear enough to be mistaken for a guy with a really soar throat. "Excuse me small one, but I spotted your light from a distance and thought I may offer up a little advice. The forest is a dangerous place at night, and walking around with a glowing orb in your hand is liable to attract predators of all kinds.... What brings you to a dark forest like this anyway? It's rare to spot someone with magic to be simply wandering about." He subconsciously checked himself over, leaving no inhuman features visible out-side of his cloak, though he was still enormous and wouldn't be surprised if such a small creature being his first encounter simply fled in the opposite direction.
Averyin Cliffony, legal heir of the Cliffony dynasty, son of the Ruler of Everything… The Banished Prince. He was sure that would be the next title to follow after his name. The little Royal Failure. Cliffony’s Disgrace.
Averyin bit his lip, his face twisting at the thoughts. He could already hear the whispers that would start pursuing him as soon as he entered the next town. And whom was any of this any good? No-one. Sure, he had made a mistake. He regretted that, he really did! But his father could have listened to his mother and overlooked it, thought about what’s best for his people and his own family before thinking about dead people. They were already dead anyway, right? Pity that, but what good was it for the whole kingdom to doubt the royal family?
So now he was in exile, alone, if you don’t count the horse, helpless, if you don’t count the money, and defenseless, if you don’t count the weapons and armor.
He was too young for this, too inexperienced! Did his father honestly think that a year of sword-training was enough to survive in the wild and that by giving him a pack full of gold he was ensuring his son’s life and safety?! What was this supposed to be anyway, a noble quest to slay a dragon?!
Nonsense! He wouldn’t even be able to reach the stupid dragon! More likely some thug was going to follow him upon exiting the next town and kill him for the beautiful white horse. And then he would happily discover he had a bonus –a hundred gold coins and a signet ring. Then he would realize who he had killed, chop his head clean off his now motionless body and hang it above his fireplace to brag about for generations to come.
“The Royal Failure” would become “The Failure Cliffony Trophy”.
It was getting dark and cold and scary but he couldn’t risk entering the town. He would have to spend the night in the woods, too scared to sleep and too sad to eat.
A single tear rolled down the flawless ivory skin.
He just kept walking on and on and on. Astrath Xeusthon was terribly lost, his sense of direction was anything but good and it didn't help that he didn't know where he was going or what he was looking for. He had left without thinking and had followed his childish heart instead of his brain. His mother had warned him about acting without thinking and now he had done it. He had left the safety of Falone in search of adventure. In search of something more than orchestras, masquerades and posh noble living. He had yearned for adventure.
Now he had gotten away from the safety of Falone. Ast was in the middle of a dark and scary forest. Was this the adventure I was looking for...I-I'm scared. He sucked in a deep breath of air and willed the light on his hand to grow darker. He feared the if the light would be snuffed out his existence would be too. The boy had never seen darkness so overwhelming before. In fact he didn't notice the cold beads of sweat trailing down his forehead. Will I even last the night? Nonsense... I'll do fine. No, I'll do more than fine. The boy nodded his head up and down. He needed a confidence boost and that had been just the thing he needed. It instilled a bit of courage in his heart and stopped him from giving in to fear.
The boy trudged on in solitude. His light shining and eyes focused on only what was in front of him and nothing else. In fact he thought the forest was deserted and had believed that he was entirely alone. That belief was shattered when a deep and throaty voice suddenly came out of the darkness.
Ast's eyes went wide and he immediately took a step back. His foot snagged on a vine and the result was him flailing then falling onto his back with a light thud. "A-A spirit!" He yelled, the fear had disrupted his concentration and the light in his palm was immediately extinguished. The boy's eyes had been used to the light so they hadn't adjusted to the darkness just yet. "I-I'm sorry for invading your forest spirit!" He yelled as he stuck out his hands in an attempt to shield himself. He had heard so many tales about insidious apparitions that turned naughty children into frogs. "I like being a human! And I'm really sor-" He stopped when he noticed that the 'spirit' was talking...and in a human language.
The boy sat up and blinked a couple of times. His eyes adjusted to the darkness and he made out the form of someone really huge in a cloak. Oh it's not a spirit...that was close. The young mage sat motionless for a few moments and tried to understand what the huge man was saying. His voice sounded very throaty but Ast understood the man. "Oh you mean this light?" He slowly got onto his feet then extended an arm towards the huge person. Ast mumbled a little spell and a tiny blue light manifested and danced around the boy's palm. He let it linger for a few seconds then wrapped his fingers around it and snuffed it out. "I didn't know, sorry, and thanks a lot for the advice mister I'll make sure to always keep it in mind." He smiled sheepishly. "I just don't like the dark that much." He was caught off guard by the next question. "I don't really know...umm," he looked at the huge man once more. "Why are you here?"
Deep within the forest, a soft rustling could be heard from within a bush, where a small light was emitting from the body of a tiny figure who was busy tugging hard on a knot of a simply made snare. The figure gave another hard tug and took a step back, inspecting her work over carefully once to make sure that there were no mistakes in the working of the trap and wiped her forehead with a relieved and almost inaudible sigh.
This should hold for tonight... As long as no foxes come.
The pixie shivered at the thought. Although her setups usually deterred most predators from straying too near the large apple tree by where she had made her home, the sly things always managed to slip through her defenses no matter how many she put up and had completely wrecked her home on more than one occasion, and had come close many times to catching the pixie as a light snack. Yes, she could have moved to a better spot or even onto the apple tree, but it would be awfully hard to move everything by herself, not to mention that it would leave her garden unattended and she wouldn't have any of that.
The garden was full of all kinds of beautiful flowers and herbs that were in bloom in every season, and before everyone else had moved away it was always full of activity and games. Now, Maleae was most likely the only one left in the forest, too stubborn to leave but still yearning for knowledge of the outside world.
Maybe one day. She told herself, trying to sound confident. I've still got plenty of time and there's no hurry anyways...
She was so caught in her musing that she missed the shadow stalking up behind her until she heard the rustling of leaves, which caused her to whip around before she froze in fear, caught in the glowing eyes of the orange furred beast that leered down on the tiny girl, teeth glinting in the little light that managed to pierce the thick canopy of leaves and branches overhead that also made flying impossible.
"U-uuh..." She whimpered, taking a few small steps back as the fox started to stalk forward menacingly, and turned and ran as fast as her feet could take her with the animal in hot pursuit. The pixie stumbled through the underbrush, pushing aside the branches that whipped against her face and gasping for air as the sounds of the pursuer grew closer and closer. She wasn't sure how long she had ran for, but finally the area above her cleared and Maleae shot up into the air only to quickly slam against something that didn't seem to be a tree of any kind, causing her to fall backwards onto the ground, stunned and breathless.
----- Astrath Xeusthon -----
He waited for the huge man to answer his question. The dread he had felt earlier was gone and Ast was calm. He knew by the way the man spoke that he would not be dangerous. He gave me good advice. I know he's a nice guy! The boy stood still but felt a chill run down his spine when he heard a tiny voice. It was a soft whimper, but as soon as he had heard the voice it vanished.
Ast turned his head left then right several times, but he saw no one, not even a shadow. "Did you hear that?" His courage faltered with each word. The young mage focused his eyes on the cloaked man before him then told himself he needed to be brave. "C-Cause-" stop stuttering, you aren't even alone anymore...just be brave. "I think I heard someone or something."
He felt something crash against his leg followed by the same voice, but this time it was asking for help. Ast's eyes widened and he bit down on his tongue to prevent himself from yelling like a scared idiot in front of the cloaked man. The mage hadn't realized how much he had paled though it was almost impossible to notice in the dimly lit forest. He had gone cold as well, Ast gulped and began to look around.
A tiny light caught his eyes. On the ground was not some evil spirit, but a pixie. Oh wow! This is amazing!
Ast was no longer scared, the fear had left and in its place came pure and childlike curiosity. I heard so many tales about her kind from puppeteers, but I never thought I'd get to see a pixie with my own eyes! Falone never had any magic, unless you considered mages. But right now - there's a real pixie in front of me! I can't believe how awesome this is! He was yelling with glee inside his head, his first encounter with a magical creature. He had studied magic for years and it was never easy, pixies on the other hand were born into a magical environment. If he ever got the chance he had so many questions he wanted to ask her, but now wasn't the time for that. He was snapped out of his thoughts when he realized that she was the one asking for help.
"O-Oh! Are you alright?" Ast nearly dove headfirst into the ground. He knelt on the forest floor then offered for the fairy to hop into his hand. "Sorry for blocking your flight path." He mumbled before offering her a sheepish smile. "I'm Astrath Xeusthon, but it's a really long name so I go by Ast. That guy over there is... uhm-" he paused. "What are both your names?"
----- Colin Skigh -----
He had been hired to track down and kill the banished prince. The reason? Even he didn't know. Colin followed after the younger male and managed to do so while keeping his cover. He had a black hood pulled over his mop of disheveled dirty blonde hair. It was an attempt to cover his pointy ears. Colin appeared human, but he was half elf and unfortunately elfin were looked down upon by both humans and elves. However, he did that so he wouldn't attract any unnecessary attention. If he weren't on a tracking quest then he wouldn't have cared about who saw his pointy elf ears. He didn't care about what anyone thought about him.
If they look down on me then I don't care...I am not covering up the fact that I'm half-elf just so they'll like me more. I'd rather be hated for who I am anyways.
A thin smiled made its way onto Colin's face as he nimbly darted to and fro from tree to tree. The prince knew nothing of his existence or presence and that was a good thing. This was the first time he had been hired to kill such an important person and Colin did not want to screw it up. He stopped whenever the prince stopped then continued moving whenever his target did. As time marched on Colin begun to see the prince as a lost kid with nowhere else to go, not a super powerful brat.
"Interesting," Colin begun grinning from ear to ear like a Cheshire cat. "Maybe I'll play with the little target for a while...he's interesting." He whispered very quietly under his breath.
The young elfin dug into his pocket and pulled out a throwing knife. He chuckled and threw it, close enough to the prince's head so he'd hear it whiz past, but not close enough to touch him. It stuck to a tree a several meters behind him and Colin walked out into the open with a huge smile. The smile that usually meant happiness and satisfaction. "I love a good game." He announced before giving the prince a slight bow laced with mockery though Colin's smile seemed very sincere. He was having fun in his own twisted way. "So what's the heir to the throne doing out in a scary forest?" He asked, his blue eyes gleaming like that of a predator.
Zahef blinked wildly for a moment as the boy had fallen from being startled by his suddenly speech, though it was quiet he released a rather deep chuckle at this sight, seeing someone scared by him was a bit intertaining, though more entertaining was that he at first mistook him for some devious forest spirit. He Released a much deeper throaty chuckle once more before replying to the boy's words "HmHmHm, It sounds like you are very 'new' to travel, yes? In this world the darkness is your friend in many cases. If you allow the light of the world to illuminate things for you, then you can see far better and over a greater distance than using handmade light sources... Of course, if there is no light at all, then there's not much choice if you can't use other senses to navigate, It's actually a bit of a skill to analayze the difference between true darkness and Minimal Night Light." He knew 'true darkness' quite well, when traveling under-ground there is no light, only your senses, and he must always trust Bahema and his senses to navigate him safely under-ground. "Hmhm, you don't know why you're here? You are either very brave, foolish, or simply so inexperienced that you don't fathom the danger that is involved with wandering around aimlessly... I am here to explore, you could say I'm a scholar... 'of a sort', I'm from a different land and am here to learn about this one... I think perhaps I shall travel 'with' you for a while, You'll certainly be safer with a companion, I can only imagine the value a mage would have to slavers or the like in this region."
He picked up on the tiny voice a little clearer, slightly shifting his position as she burst through the bushes, then he shoved a foot into place behind her path, possibly revealing some of his claw, causing the sound of a thud and a canine yelp before a quiet growl from him sent the fox barreling off in the other direction running away from a 'superior predator'. Then he looked back to the small fleshy person, now holding a much smaller person, and cocked his head slightly as questions came to mind, proceeding to crouch down and get a closer look, though for the moment still fully hidden by his cloak, but considering revealing himself given their location 'out in the forest' "Hmmm, What odd creatures I've stumbled upon, or perhaps it was fated, who knows...Hrm, I am known as Zahef [zah-heef], I'm from a land that I doubt you're people even know exists, given how poorly you blend in naturally, we would've noticed if any managed to cross the mountains." With that he pulled back the hood of his claw to reveal his muzzle, he was as curious of what their reaction to him might be as he was about what the hell they were. "I am curious as well actually, but 'what' are you? Both of you actually."
He tried to display something of a smile, though to a human it may not be the most obvious thing on a face like his, that's when the wind blew in his direction and he tensed up slightly, catching a unique scent on the wind, it was slightly similar to ast's as a human, but wildly different in a number of ways, and it inspired him to turn to look in the direction of a certain someone who was concealed in a tree in the distance. His eyes narrowed as he trained tunnel vision in the distance and quickly browsed the area in that direction for any hints of life focused on them, ultimately setting on the image of an eye peeking through the tree's and glaring directly into it, though there seemed to be no hint of hostilities given as of yet, so he did not act on noticing this and simply turned back to Ast.
Averyin was struck with fear and surprise, mixing in a combination fatal for his voice. He could hardly believe his eyes and hardly even hear anything besides his own heart, trying it’s best to leave the soon-to-be-useless body and fly away in a random direction.
He couldn’t breathe and for the first time Averyin realized acutely that air was very needed to produce words indeed.
The older boy in front of him was clearly threatening him, that much was clear. Why didn’t he kill him with that knife, though? Did he have a bad aim? Did the poor prince still have the chance to escape?
He did have a horse. And he did have an armor that could maybe, possibly, neglect a blow or two.
The prince’s eyes darted to the forest and he kicked his horse’s sides swiftly, running off in a random direction.
Colin smirked. When will they realize that running away won't work. He stared at the horse then stifled a yawn. This wasn't much of a challenge. Colin leaned against a tree and summoned his element, fire. A flame flickered to life on his hand and he tossed the flaming ball several feet in front of where the horse was going. The ground before it burst into flames. The mercenary felt pretty confident that it would be enough to startle the horse and the prince. Things were getting very interesting indeed.
"I suggest you stop running. I have terrific aim and the only reason you're still alive is because I wanted you to live." Colin smiled broadly, a wild sort of gleam in his blue eyes. This was the most fun he had in weeks. "So princey, what are you up to?"
Averyin, who had just fallen heavily to the ground, groaned and pushed up as fast as he could in an attempt to catch his startled horse. The effort proved futile when the rign slipped right under his fingers and the horse ran off into the woods, along with the little prince's weapons, money and hope. He stood still for a moment, head bowed, his shoulders shuddering and when he lifted his face it was obvious he barely held his tears back.
"What do you want from me?!" he shouted desperately. "If you're aiming to kill me you're doing a pretty damn job so far! Should I make it easier for you?" He almost ran towards the elfin and stopped right under his nose. "Go ahead! Or if you don't want any blood spatters just give me your knife and I'll make it easier for you! I'll also make sure to perserve that head for your trophy untouched! But you might want to get a good look at my eyes for when you want to create GLASS ONES!" He shouted hysterically.
The mercenary broke into laughter. "You're an interesting fellow." He said, not even bothering to conceal the amusement in his voice. "I expected you to cower and cry while pleading for your life, but you did the opposite. Not what I was expecting-" Colin paused then stared at the prince up and down. "You broke my poor expectations of you." He grabbed Averyin by the colar of his shirt and pulled the boy close so they were looking each other in the eye. The playful gleam in Colin's eyes turned stone cold for a moment. "I could cut you open right now-" he pushed the banished prince back and the cold look immediately turned into one filled with mirth. "I won't because you're interesting..." He took out another throwing knife and held it in front of himself. He admired the sharp blade and tried his best to unnerve the younger boy in front of him.
"Someone hired me to kill you, but you're far too interesting to just slaughter like an animal." He smiled again, an odd Cheshire grin. "I like interesting people so maybe I'll let you live. Your responses entertain me." He took a step forward so he'd be side by side with the prince. Colin then swung his arm over the younger boy in an attempt to unnerve him a bit more.
The prince winced and clenched his teeth, trying to not let the feelings of humiliation get to him. Now that the immediate threat for his life had passed his mind would be more capable of producing a variety of other thoguhts and emotions than trying to not wet his pants and that was scary in itself.
"That's great... so I just have to continue being interesting to you and you'll tolerate my being alive. How great is that. How many princes could say they've been banished and re-adopted in the matter of a day? Are you going to give your pet a new name as well, then?" He took a step side-ways and looked at his personal Grim Reaper, a slight and desperate frown creeping on his face.
"Pretty much." Colin sounded like a very happy child, one that had been given a brand new toy to play with. "Though you already managed to make me laugh. In fact you made this dreary day tolerable. So when I'm tired of you...I won't kill you. How does that sound princey?" A bright gleam of hope sparked in the younger boy's eyes like a sun's ray in a gloomy day and immediately turned to horror when Colin took a step back, pointed the knife directly at Averyin's left eye then stuffed it back into his bag. "When I'm bored with you I'll just leave, but for now...consider me a shadow, princey. I expect fun things on your little journey and I want all the fun and adventure I can get." Colin still had a silly looking smile on his face. "What do you say to that?" A dangerous gleam shone in his blue eyes. "I say it's a wonderful deal...you get to live afterall. No use refusing such a kind act of mercy." The smile subtly turned into a smirk. "Refusing kindness is rude, and if you did...perhaps everything would backfire on you, right princey?"
"Right. Fine. Do with me what you wish, Your Majesty." The prince moaned and held his face in his hands. This was all too much for him and now even Lennder was gone.
When he lifted his head he gave Colin a ruthlessly stern look and demanded: "If you're going to be my shadow, and if you're so great you better go get my horse back."
"Pffft, and now you toughen up and speak. I'll definitely enjoy this." Colin rolled his eyes at the prince's orders. "Who needs a horse when walking is so much better. Besides if you had it you'd be riding while I walked all the way." He gave the boy a teasing pat on the head. "That wouldn't be fair to me at all~!" He added in a sing-song tone of voice. "Now let me explain the benefits of walking. You'll live longer and you'll toughen up. You're wimpy, you know that princey?" He pushed the prince forward before his smile turned into a more playful and less dangerous one. "How will princessess find you attractive if you can't even save them? You can't even save yourself right now." The mercenary laughed, he was rather blunt without noticing or trying. "So we'll walk and eventually you'll earn stamina, maybe get a bit stronger, so losing your horse was pretty much a win win situation. Am I right, or am I right?"
"No, you are NOT right!" Averyin stomped his foot on the ground, evidently heated up. "Lennder is my horse and my only friend and I don't mind walking, but I want my horse back! I'm not going anywhere without him, and if anything, he has my weapons and money and you can't deny that's useful!"
"True," Colin mumbled. "And money you say? If I get him back...you'll buy me all the food I want. What do you think?"
"Of course." Averyin frowned. "I'm your pet now, right? What would I do without you. And in exchange you'll guard my life from any other evil slavedrivers who want to have me, right?"
"Sure princey, I won't let them lay a finger on you?" He cackled then made his way towards the forest. "Lennder!" The elfin yelled. "C'mere will ya? I promise there will be no more flames." The horse didn't come to him, which was to be expected considering he almost barbequed the thing. Colin frowned. He didn't want to spend time calling an animal that despised him, but if that thing had money on it then it was his ticket to a quick meal and the easiest way to get his newest pet, the prince, moving. Colin snuck near the horse and immediately jumped on it. The horse struggled and begun running around, but Colin managed to make his way onto the saddle. He grabbed the reigns and wrestled with it until the horse obeyed his bidding. He steered it out of the forest and decided to parade it arrogantly around the prince. "I did pretty well if I say so myself." The elfin hopped off the horse then stared at the prince. "So aside from the banished prince, what name do you have princey?"
" 'Princey', obviously." Averyin snapped and ignored the question for a while, patting the head of his horse and whispering softly in it's ear. "Also, Averyin. That's my real name, and currently, probably the only one I have. My father turned against me so I probably shouldn't use his name lightly anymore.... " He trailed off, but soon lifted his head again. "And your name?"
"Hmm I'd say it's nice to meet you Averyin, but I'm pretty sure nice isn't what you're thinking of at the moment." Colin tilted his head. "I heard rumors of your banishment, they've been spreading like wildfire recently, must've been rough princey, but the lack of a last name isn't so bad. It gives you a heightened sense of individuality, don't you think? I don't really use my family name either, because what use is it when I don't even have a family left?" He rolled his eyes. "I'm Colin Skigh, but most people who want to hire me call me Nightblade the Sellsword. Just call me Colin, and I'll stick with princey. Averyin is too fancy sounding for my tastes."
Figures.. thought the unfortunte Noble and sighed. Things could be worse, probably. Probably....