Tuesday, September 22, 2009

RP: A quiet evening alone

This is definitely out of place. I suppose I should give you a little context: Haydren Sunsorrow, Ysani's more-or-less stalker, is travelling under an assumed name (that of Ysani's lover, to be precise) and has been lying in wait for Lamis. He has a plan to use her as a tool to get what he wants, and in her current state of exhaustion, she's unable to decline. __________________________________________________

"Oh Mister Dawnstar!" Two voices sang in unison over Haydren's stone. He was groggy from lack of good sleep, but the alias didn't phase him in the slightest. He snatched the stone off the pillow beside him and cleared his throat.

"Meg, Jenny. So good to hear from you. What's the word?"

"Miss Dal'Theron checked in a few minutes ago," said Megan.

"She looked really, really tired," chimed in Jennifer.

bloody," they clucked disapprovingly. "We're going to have to get the stairs mopped early this week."

He pressed a hand to his forehead. The Owings twins were creepy, vapid, and gave him a monstrous headache, but together they ran a tight ship at the New Agamand Inn. No one came or went without them knowing, and they were more than happy to share information and gossip when you turned up the charm. For a few coins they'd even wake you up in the middle of the night to let you know when your flown sparrow had come back to roost.

"Thank you, ladies. I look forward to seeing her in the morning. I appreciate you calling right away."

"Our pleasure, sir! Good luck with your lady friend, it's wonderful to see a little romance blooming in times like these," they chirped. "Do invite us to the wedding, we love weddings."

Her careless track was easily spotted. He simply ducked down to the second landing with his knapsack hanging off one shoulder and followed the trail of blood droplets that hadn't even had a chance to dry yet. They led to the last door on the second floor, and he checked the knob. It was unlocked.

Lamis lay in a heap, propped up partway against the bed in a smear of blood. It looked as though she'd shrugged off her kit at the door, axe dropped haphazardly near the bed, and hadn't quite the strength to make it into bed before she collapsed. Locking the door behind him, he crept to her side and squatted down to examine her, setting his bag on the mattress.
How does one check the vitals of a corpse? He placed a hand gently on her throat, and his question was soon answered with an incredibly slow, but unmistakable pulse. Her skin was cool to the touch, and he shivered as he removed her gory armor piece by piece. Careful, methodical probing revealed that most of the blood belonged to someone else--probably many someones.

Running water was nearly unheard of in the smaller Forsaken-run inns, he'd found, but New Agamand was a fairly large hub of activity, and they appeared to value the convenience. He suspected it may have had something to do with the massive quantities and potencies of the plague operations being run outside. Even the Forsaken had to be careful here. The water pressure was low, and he had time to lay Lamis' limp body on a towel while he waited for the basin to fill.

How long had she gone without a bath? Too long, he thought, and he began the slow business of washing the woman's hair and face, careful not to scrub open barely-closed wounds on her ears and neck. It was very slow going, and he had to empty the basin and refill it many times before he was satisfied. A slim knife drawn from his belt slit her ragged undershirt and pants, and he pulled new ones from his bag. No sense in trying to salvage the disgusting things.

Nearly a dozen bloody basins later, he finished scrubbing her black-soled feet and lifted her off the soaked towel, now darkly stained with watered-down gore and copious amounts of dirt. Her body was criss-crossed with lacerations nearly from head to toe, all in varied stages of repair. Many were obviously fresh, and these he wrapped carefully in treated gauze; then he dressed her in new underclothes, a simple white shirt and pants. Through all of this, Lamis never stirred, nor did she move when he lifted her up and put her under the sheets of her bed. He was shocked at her lightness. She might have been hollow, a sack of bones; he could have cradled her in one arm. Removing his boots he crawled into bed beside her, pulling her faintly-breathing body to him. Without the layers of coppery blood and dirty buildup, she smelled oddly pleasant, like crisp autumn leaves.

He caught a glimpse of the red dragon he'd been instinctively tracking through the unshuttered window. How odd for a drake to be circling so late in this part of the world.

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