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 A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]

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King Azreth
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PostSubject: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:33 am

The King lounged in his giant four-poster, sun streaming in through the red curtains closed against the morning sun. He knew he should be up by now; but it was one of the very, very few days that he actually had the time to sleep in late. Of course, as there was nothing to do, he saw no reason why he should bother himself in getting up and dressed for the day.

The Council meeting had gone late into the night; he hadn't actually gotten back to his suite of rooms until the early morning. The King was sure that there would hundreds of things he could be doing today, but none that absolutely had to be done. Raising his arms over his head in a languid stretch, the King turned over onto his side, pulling the thick goose-down comforter back up over his head, hiding green eyes from the morning and all its duties.

He had told the Guards before he retired for the night to allow no one save the Duke and his Alchemist into his rooms; all others, they should turn away. They had absolute orders not to wake him under any circumstances, and the King intended to make use of those orders. A small smile curving his lips, Azreth closed his eyes, the wings of sleep rising up and wrapping around him once more.


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Last edited by King Azreth on Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:20 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:01 am

Ah...mornings. Mornings were wonderful for annoying the shit out of people that weren't morning people, like himself. Zel strolled down the hallway, his regal robes of office in a smashing red and white swishing behind him with satisfaction. Swishy swishy~ A grin and a salute to the guards that stood along the halls at intervals was given. All in return were perplexed looks at this regal man who was grinning beneath that robe hood, or they were flinching away... He couldn't tell. It wasn't like he blew up the library...again.

It wasn't too long that he made it to the slumbering King's chamber. Polite chatter was had at the door. ' How's the wife? Is that really shiny? Shouldn't you be on the night watch? How about them airships? ' Stuff like that. Nothing really interesting, but just enough to keep the nice men and women that guarded the palace not wanting to stab him. It was an odd fear, Zel had, but a rational one with many people with sharp objects on their persons on a normal day. With a polite bow he entered the bedroom and crossed the room.

He had to pause. Almost in prayer, his hands rose to meet one another as those shadowed hazel eyes looked from the black out curtains to the four poster bed of the sleeping King. Sheets or Curtains? What a hard decision and it was still before noon! With a soft sigh and a twirl of his pinky fingers, a rather large strand of energy and will was wrapped around either side of the curtains. It caused a minor buzz inside Zel's head, similar to a mosquito flying around someone's ear. Blocking this irritation and the foundation for a splitting headache from the minimal cat nap he had from the long meeting last night, the Alchemist took a few steps, grabbed the end of the bed sheet with his hands still clasped then yanked the delectable warm blanket away. His hands parted as he did such, and so did the curtains bringing in bright, shiny, morning light that was rather painful to look at.

He was beaming from ear to ear. Oh Zel was sure he was going to get at least a half death stare for this. Worth it. " Good morning, Azzy! " he bellowed, using the comforter as a frame for his greying beard. Purple just wasn't his color. "And what a lovely day it is! "
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:24 am

Edward walked in just as the curtains were opened and was nearly blinded by the bright sunlight that now shone through. "Ugh," he grunted. Ed glanced at the bed and had to swallow his laughter. Zel had removed the all powerful comforter and revealed the King. Edward made sure to walk around the room in such a way that the alchemist would not fall on him. Just in case Kingy woke up a little faster then they expected. "You are a cruel man Zel. I would have crawled to the foot of the bed and decided what to do once I Got there, of course Kingy might sense me if I just walked over there. Hard to miss a 250 lbs man." Edward grinned. "I'll hold him King." Ed winked at Zel.

Ed glanced out the window for a moment at the palomino stallion waiting outside. He swore he could see his horse sneering at him and he resisted the urge to hang out the kings window and yell at Eric. "Impatient beast," he muttered. Edward shook himself. It had been a long night last night. And his bed had felt so good. Granted once he got there he couldn't sleep, so he dragged his mattress to the stables and slept with his stallion. Neither Eric nor Zel seemed to respect descent rising hours. He hoped King didn't notice the straw protruding from his mattress. Ed plucked a strand from his black mane and flicked it away. "Good morning your Majesty." Stretching he inched minutely closer to the bed. Wanting to see what happened next.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:41 am

Azreth shot up with a snarl and a howl, whipping a viciously curved dagger from beneath his pillow. Green eyes flashed as he extended his wrist towards the two perpetrators, and abruptly his fingers opened, causing the wicked blade to drop to the bed with a quiet whump after recognizing them. The King passed a slender hand over his eyes; a hand more fitting for a scribe or a bard rather than a King, and the man let out a quiet grunt. Years of being constantly on-guard had caused him to be this way; when he was eighteen -- only seven years ago -- he hadn't been like this. The title of King came with a heavy burden, and had changed the King in small ways such as this.

"Was that entirely necessary, Zel?" A perfect eyebrow rose and fell in an unspoken chastisement. The sharp green gaze turned towards the Duke, narrow eyes squinting against the morning sun. "And you," he snarled, baring his teeth. "You should have stopped him." The King looked from one of them to the other, a shock of blonde hair falling into his eyes. With a forced sigh, the King threw the covers from himself, revealing a broad chest and back crossed with scars. The King waved his hand, feeling a small pull behind his eyes as he exerted the tiniest tendril of Skill, and several moments later a young page popped his head in the room. The King himself only had a small amount of the Skill, quite unlike his Alchemist. While he could do small things like make Magelight and summon others with a compulsion, he could not work the wonders that Zel could.

The child gathered the King's clothes for the day, polishing the crown resting on a plush pillow in the outer rooms, and making up the King's bed for him, strewing the ground with lavender-scented rushes as he puttered about. The King held his arm out as the boy dressed him, focusing his attention once more on the two men before him. They were so different -- the Duke towered over everyone; an absolute tank, while Zel seemed like an eccentric oddity with his beard and parti-colored robes. But the one commonality they did have made them absolutely essential, not to mention best friend to the King: their loyalty to him.

No matter what happened, no matter the choices he made or if his Kingdom fell, these two men who had grown to love him -- and he them -- would never leave his side. The King had no fear that they would turn their cloaks or sell information about him, and they were the only two people -- not only on the Isle, but also the world below as well -- that he could trust completely.

"Well, gentlemen. I hope you're both recovered from last night's meeting?" He looked at both of them to confirm. "Zel, I believe I sent you out before the meeting without the knowledge of the Council to seek out information on a particular problem we've been having in Avandere city. Have you found anything out about our killer"


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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:08 am

The startling rousing of the king was met with an eyebrow quirk and a wider grin from the (possibly) mad Alchemist. "Yes, Completely necessary, Your Majesty. I probably should have gone for the curtains first, but you would have been up to my tricks and that simply will not do~ " His gaze turned from the King to the Duke as a frown flickered for a moment before neutrality took over upon the bearded face. "Now that's just downright mean, getting held and beaten like that. Why, that's hardly proper at all. A cowards way to fight I say. " Glancing at the fabric still in his hands, Zel shrugged and began gathering it up, subconsciously aiding the page in remaking the bed. "Then again, what I did was no more cowardly that that you mention. How were the stables, Duke? "


A tick he had developed over the years was brushing his knucles along his beard. He had began to catch himself doing it over and over again while he worked or thought or just stood idly by while someone forgot to go behind the changing screen to change for the nth time. That was neither here nor there. Everyone was jumpy. Common criminals were messing up just as much as the guards... and this one fantastic development proved to be quite a challenge. Even if the lead did end up with the aging Alchemist on the other side of town in a slum with Zeddler cracking jokes. If he heard one more joke about a harp toad and a Beggar, there would be blood! In a practiced motion, the hood was pushed down letting that warm red hair out and about in the light of day. No fuzzy hat today, Zel was still too warm from running about town.

He shrugged his shoulders, " A lead. Actually, several though most are dead and the rest can be dismissed as utter coincident. Kelver Two-Tone is the one that is behind it. As the gang leader of that rebelious group that took refuge in the Luck and Draw Inn's cellar, he offed nice old Widow Marion. Apparently Mister Fellocker owed a rather large debt from the smuggling of illegal Lander Drugs so they took revenge, killed the nagging wench, stole her jewelry and set arson to her residence...." Somewhere Zel had started picking at his nails. Gosh, climbing on roofs was dirty work! How do people do that? Ugh... Nail clippers.. At least it was just dirt and suit not something less pleasant under there. " About five surly butch and dumb henchmen are always around the scrawny whelp. Passage in and out of the city is reduced to passes before you ask and all carts, bags, and luggage is being checked for anything suspicious. Apologetic gift bags are being handed out to people that go through the hindering process before you even ask."

" C'an we have Tea before we go? " Zel asked innocently like he hadn't just prattled off battle plans. Default. Who knows who was listening...Walls had ears even in the most secure place. Zel would know...he knew where most of them were in the castle as he put them there himself. Silly thing to spy on yourself, but it had to be done.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:29 am

Edward grinned at both the accusations. Wisely saying nothing to either the Duke leaned against a bed post. "The stable was just fine thank you." while the King dressed and listened to the report from the alchemist with mild interest. He knew this would have to be solved by cracking the perps massive body guard wall. That meant getting muscle and or brains to the source of the problem. Well he had the muscle, Zel had the brains and Az had the will to get them there. What could be simpler. Edward hated bandying around the point and he said as much.

"Less talk, more battle plan." he groaned. He needed some physical action. He was bored and he NEEDED something. Perhaps squashing this new threat would help. "Its not bad enough that we have the six pestering us, we now have this overgrown weed sticking cockleburrs everywhere he goes. Time to get the pruning sheers." Oh yes the Duke was mad. He had liked the Widow, she made good pies and understood the appetite of a man of his stature. Two-tone was going to pay. Ed was gonna sink and extra large fist right into the mans face the first chance he got.

"King, send me in please. I want to end this so we can get back to ruling our Peaceful city, minus the murdering scum. Zel i could use some assistance, if you can get me close enough my broadsword will do the rest. This man doesn't have any.." the duke waggled his hands at Zel, "magicy abilities?"
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:48 am

A quirk of the King's lip belied his amusement at Ed's reaction. He placed a hand on the page's head, ruffling the child's brown curls affectionately. While Zel and the Duke were speaking, he dropped down to a knee in front of the boy, straightening the child's tunic with strong hands. "There you are, boy. Go run along and play now; I shalln't be needing you until tomorrow. My companions here lead me to believe that I won't be back until long after you've retired for the night." The King dug around in the satchel on his belt, pulling out a gold Crown from the suede bag, placing it into the young boy's hand with a smile. "I heard there were some stalls set up on the Fairgrounds on the east field of Avandere Castle in preparation for the Midwinter Fest." The boy's brown eyes lit up. "Go on and buy some things for yourself; I've seen you eying the blades on my wall." The King winked at him. "Buy a blunted blade for yourself, Geoff, and I'll teach you the next day I get a few hours to myself, hmm?"

A wide smile split the boy's face and he threw his arms around the King's neck in a joyous hug. "Aye, Milord--Your Majesty-- I will, Sir!" The boy released the King and with a yelp of joy as the King swatted him on the behind, ran out of the King's rooms, hollering to the guards of his good fortune. A smile curled the King's lips as he rose, reaching for the custom-forged dagger he had dropped on the bed earlier and retrieving the other from under his pillow. He slid both of the blades home in the sheaths on his belt, rolling his shoulders to loosen them up from sleep.

"Alright, gentlemen. Ed, we do need to come up with a plan before barging in there, as you very well know." He winked at Zel; the Duke's readiness to solve most conflicts with violence was a well-known quirk of their friend, and the three of them laughed about it often. "Zel, as Ed asked, was there any Skill involved? And does Two-Tone have any living relatives? Perhaps we could avoid bloodshed and come to a compromise." Green eyes focused on the middle distance as his mind worked. If they could solve this whole issue without killing the culprit, all the better. However, as what seemed almost always the case, that was highly unlikely. Still, when criminals got to this point and refused to surrender, nine times out of ten the three of them had to Execute them right on the spot -- which wasn't terribly uplifting to his subjects. They hated to see the King's two shadows -- not to mention the King himself -- kill in front of them, regardless if the criminal needed to be killed or not.

King Azreth ran a hand through his hair, disheveling it instead of smoothing it, as was his intent. "I suppose we'll have to do this without our Bonded -- the town's alleys would only be a hindrance to them, and if they got captured, our hands would be entirely tied." He grit his teeth. No one wanted to have their Bonded in rough hands -- they would give their own lives to save that of their Azrein. Everyone knew the rumors that if either a human or an Azrein died when they were Bonded, the other would be so grief-stricken that they would either die soon after, take their own life, or never be the same again; hardly speaking, barely eating. He gave his head a small shake; no, they would not put their Azrein's lives in danger.

"So. Here's what I think we should do. Let us go to the town in disguise and begin bad-mouthing Two-Tone, saying that we are far more fearsome and could break him across our knee if we so chose. More likely than not, his cronies will either try to kill us, or Two-Tone will come himself. If his cronies come, we can question them, and if Two-Tone himself shows then we will...do what is necessary. But before that, let's visit his close friends or family if he has any." The King's attention switched back and forth between the two. Does this seem like an easy compromise?" He smiled at Edward Drake. "If there is any fighting, and Zel can ensure that neither of us are open to magical attacks, by all means, you'll be the first one in."
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:05 am

Alas, the request for morning tea would go unanswered. The Alchemist let it slide and instead decided to confirm their fears, " Yes. One has some Skill. He can make Magefire. That's it. Which one, I couldn't tell, nor would it really matter. The fact that Two-Toned is hiding in a public place says enough about his ego. Now where's my blasted tea? " Tea wouldn't be had, Zel could just sense it and instead zoned out as the page ran out beaming from ear to ear. Great, more sharp objects laying around for someone to get stabbed with.

There should be a law against this.

Scratching at the back of his head in thought of what else he learned, Zel spoke carefully, "Brutish attacking begets brutish attacking. Now, if you wanted a wipe, I can do that. And I do not think he'll surrender. His family disowned him from my research and from the records in the records tower...that needs more coal by the way. " He gestured to the King and shrugged, "It truly is your call, Azreth. None of the Greater Herd has bonded with any of them. Their souls are not whole, we have nothing to fear in that respect. The Inn owners, however are completely oblivious to Two-Tone's intentions. "

Zel paused for a moment and glanced between the brute and the brains several times."It's all on file. Really. Why else do you think I hired two scribes just for criminal records! Now, let's be done with this so I can sleep. Shoo! Off with you! " It was complete with the pursing of the lips and the shooing motion with his hands.

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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:23 am

Duke dangled an organic tea bag in front of the irrate chemist. "Oh come on, be more social then that, wake up on the wrong side of the tower did we? I don't have a problem with being brutishly attacked, however I dislike being burnt to a crisp." Ed turns his head to the King. "It takes forever for my eyebrows to grow back." Ed grinned.

"Zel it isn't even noon yet, King will clobber you if you got him up just so you could go to bed." Ed flicked away more straw. " I think the innkeepers should be evacuated at the last minute and the inn locked to prevent any damage to it. It would be unfair to the proprietors to have their inn destroyed because King has a pest control problem."

"My Azrein is gonna be mad that he doesn't get to come. He loves fighting... alot. Poor unfortunate brat, I'll have to bring him a souvenir."
Edward felt a prickling on his neck as Erik finally decided to wake up. Thats what he got for waking Ed up this morining at 5 o clock.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:44 am

The King snatched the teabag from Ed's fingers, walking to one of his outer rooms, motioning with his hand for the two to follow. He spoke over his shoulder as he began pulling out tea-things from a cabinet, heating the water in the pot with a flick of his fingers. "Zel, you're not going to bed; I need you to come with us. Ed's right -- we can't allow the Inn to be destroyed, otherwise I'd have to pay out of my own pocket, and not the Treasury. Can you put up a Shield around it while we confront Two-Tone?" The King tore open the teabag -- for he liked the leaves themselves -- he was a bit superstitious, one of the many things that Zel needled him about with his japes when playing the Fool -- and dumped the leaves into the pot, adding a few more from a cedarwood box. Pulling out three small, ornate glass cups that could only hold a few gulps at most, he waited for the tea to steep before pouring.

He put the tiny cups on a tray, taking them over to a set of three chairs and another chaise-lounge, putting the tray on the low table between them. He took up a cup, adding quite a bit of sugar to it before taking a sip. He waited for the other two to sit before going on. "Since he has no family, the best we can do is goad him into a fight." The King sighed. "And while Ed complains of fireballs and eyebrow singing, I'm afraid it might come to that if their numbers are too great for Ed and myself to handle." The King held up a hand, knowing a comment from Ed about how he could take them all would be forthcoming. "I know you can handle them, Your Grace, but I'd rather we were safe than have you injured. I've only a touch of Healing, and I don't know if Alchemy covers that particular branch of the Skill." Azreth brought the cup to his lips, inhaling the warm spicy sent, reminiscent of being fire-side during a howling snowstorm. He finished his tea slowly, enjoying the particular brew.

"Will you two be ready to head out after tea? We need to head to Zel's and get some disguises; I'd suggest Merchant class to not stand out too much." The King dropped the cup to the floor, crunching the glass under his boot, gorgeous as it was, and intoned the ritual words. "Beauty and health do not last, but loyalty forever will." He was sure the ritual to Zel and Ed was still strange, even after doing it for years, but it was something that the King absolutely required all of them do before heading out for work like this. Strange as it was, it always brought the King a feeling that no matter how rough things may go, he always had the two of them.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:07 am

" Your eyebrows are the least of your worries. I bet I could make all the hair on you go POOF! " Zel grumled and glared at the dangling tea bag. It was down right mockery right there. Up for almost the whole night and not even a cup of tea! That's gratitude for you.

Attention was killed from the amusing mockery to the king making the tea. It was always puzzling, then again, one did learn to accept certain things about ones close friends. And that the pretty tea cups would be dug into the rug...again. The Alchemist followed after, settled into one of the chairs, picked up one of the cups and began delicately sipping the tea.Delicious tea. Delicate, flavorful... A little too rich for his tastes, then again perfectly brewed tea wasn't often. Merchants? Did he have anything in 'Merchant'? Probably. That'd be next to 'Maurading Pirate' no doubt. He didn't even argue the point of no sleep. what's seven more hours anyways? "A sheild would take me most of the day to get it exactly perfect for what you are asking for. The best I can do is plant a Will for everyone inside of innocens to the crime to attend the Festival. "


"I do disagree that some show of force would be marvelous for a snare. Perhaps a one way lock trick? Magefire? Loud bangs enough to stir up the local guards, then high tail it out of there. " He hadn't much to add and took a moment to swirl the almost empty tea cup for a few moments, watching the stray leaves spin around and around . Sighing, he dropped the cup on the floor and stepped upon it. With a heavy sigh, Zel heaved himself up to his feet, brushed his hands along the lapels of his frock coat then pulled the hood up over his head, taking a moment to settle it just right. He then beamed and rubbed his hands together with an eager grin. "I should probably get on those disguises then, shall I? Do excuse me~ I'll be seeing you two shortly." With a polite bow with one hand over his heart to minimize fabric movement of the jacket, he assumed that it would be soon that the plan would be executed.. One didn't simply snap ones fingers and costumes appeared out of thin air. That was just silly and highly improbable.

Zel exited the room, then the palace and merrily walked to his humble flat of two stories, shoved almost a hundred pounds of books, scrolls, leftovers onto the floor of his kitchen and went to searching for those costumes in the attic. Naturally his door was left unlocked when he was around. It wasn't like someone was going to walk in and rob him. Anything could explode. It was nice to have his predicessors have such violent histories.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:18 am

Ed crushed his empty glass into the floor. He regretted crushing the tiny thing.

"Disguise huh, do you think he will be able to find anything big enough? I hate small clothes." Edward scowled. Pinchy, ithcy, dirty, stinky, restrictive, infernal fabric. "It better be cotton." he grumbled.

Edward winked at King. "Glad Puddle woke you up and not me. It looked rather distressing." the Duke sniggered. An enraged whinny came from below. " Oh, he finally figured it out. Silly horse." Ed rushed back into Kings bedroom threw open the windo and yelled down. "You arn't coming so quit complaining!" he yelled. "We don't want any Azrein hurt." Ed rushed back to the King, beaming. "You know I'm in big trouble now right?"
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:41 am

Azreth clapped his right fist over his heart, then touched his two forefingers to his lips in answer to Zel's bow; normally,clapping one's fist to their chest was a salute used by the military and guardsman, but when two fingers were touched to one's lips, it was a salute of respect, from equal to equal, one of high praise. If anyone saw the King do so in public, doubtless they would have a stroke. The Giver forbid the King saw any as an equal, let alone the violent Duke and rather eccentric Alchemist. The fact that the two of them normally followed the King, dubbed "The King's Shadows", and laid their lives on the line for him didn't matter to anyone; it was always honorifics, policy, and protocol with Nobility. Fools.

The King shook his head, breaking himself from his thoughts as the Duke return, and a sly smile kissed his features. "I suppose you are. Valdien himself is throwing quite a fit in the back of my mind, but he knows that his duties right now are to guard the Greater Herd." That was one of the King's gift he was more than grateful for; the ability to speak mind-to-mind with Azrein who he was close with. To add to that, the King also had an Empathetic Skill with all Azrein. Whenever he felt strong emotion, he subconsciously projected it into the minds of other Azrein, Bonded or not. Likewise, whenever an Azrein felt strongly about something, he caught a hint of it as well. It was as if he was the center of a vast web, linked to the minds of Azrein in his lands. Oddly enough, he also somehow projected to Edward and Zel; though he figured that was because Zel had so much Skill it was nearly overflowing, and the Duke's love for the King knew no bounds. "Eric will get over it; you two are newly-Bonded, and still need to get to know each other. Introduce me to him when we get back, for I have yet to meet him."

With a stretch, the King rose from his lounge, putting his book down on the low table and Calling for a servant to tidy up the crushed teacups. He threw an arm around the Duke's shoulders [the heels of his boots giving him an extra three inches, otherwise he'd have to stand on the tips of his toes to do so], and guided the Duke to the door after grabbing his ornate rapier from the wall. His rapier had been custom-forged for him, the width of the blade three inches long at the hilt, tapering to a fine point. The blade had an ornate, looping guard in the shape of an Elk's antlers, and had a cup-hilt lined with green velvet, to match his eyes of course. "I suppose we've given the Oddball quite enough time to gather up some outfits for us, though I sincerely hope mine is tight-fitting and doesn't clash." He arched an eyebrow. "Knowing Zel, I suppose he'll consider bright orange and red to go quite well together." The King groaned, earning a laugh from the Duke, and the two of them headed out the door.

"Abel, Josh," Azreth nodded at the Guards posted outside the door, garbed in the Royal colors of gold and purple, an emerald in the shape of an Elk head -- complete with antlers -- pinned to their breasts, marking them the King's personal guard. "Ensure that no one save little Geoff enters -- I've been letting him sleep in my spare rooms, as he still has night terrors of seeing his parents killed before him." The two nodded their assent and the King clapped them on their shoulders as he took his arm from the Duke, heading down the hall at a clipped pace. As protocol dictated, the Duke would walk two steps behind and to the left of him. Whenever Zel was present, the Alchemist took up his right.

Today would prove to be quite interesting.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 4:54 am

Zeddler, Zel's bonded, really didn't give a flying hoopla of what his human was doing. It was brief mental discussion that was simply said it had to be done. No big deal. Nothing to discuss. At least on that subject but things had to get done.

Surprisingly, after a few years, there was a rather fine selection of clothing of many different sizes. And as many sizes as there were, so were clothing and fabrics. Breathable fabrics were pulled out and set aside with a simple stretching charm cast upon it for fit. More elegant fabrics of duller color were pulled out into a different pile with the same charm cast again. Cloaks were skillfully left pinned to a line of will that Zel used as a clothes line when it was a little too blustery for his laundry.

And as for himself? He managed to change into less conspicuous clothing and probably could pass for some wanderer just passing through what with that tattered cloak of his. And while he waited, he made himself a pot of coffee and saw to it the dishes did themselves. He had to rush, otherwise he'd have done them himself.


'Lessie... Browns and reds for Edward, greens and blues for Azzy.... Hmm. Meh... " The coffee was sipped and he continued mumbling to himself aloud. Mentions of colors, spells, even other Alchemists professional names were mentioned in his bumblings. and he needed to figure out what he was going to bring! Who knows what could happen.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 5:05 am

On his way, Edward picked up his precious broadsword. Everyone else thought it weighed a ton but Edward didn't notice. The great blade, inlaid with emeralds and sapphires, had been his traveling companion and protector since the day Azreth had bestowed it upon him. Well when Edward could lift the thing anyway. It wasn't light and fast like the rapier but with his arm behind it it could slice through a large sapling readily enough and gouge deeply into a large tree. Ed stroked the hilt and rejoined the King.

As they came to Zel's lair. Edward paused and cautiously stuck his handsome head in. It was a risk but he was brave.
"You found something yet Zel?" he asked. "Preferably something that fits and doesn't clash? Ooo red and brown, very well done."

Edward grinned. They were the right size too. Eric grumbled in the back of his mind. Pants wouldn't fit you, no matter how many stretching spells Zel put on them, he told the stallion.

Ed handed Azreth his garb and slid behind a nearby tall obstacle to change, least he knock over some precious...explosive equipment.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:01 am

The King smiled as he and Edward made their way across the courtyard to Zel's residence. The King pulled his Cloak of Office tighter around him, the cold, gusting winds causing his flesh to pimple with gooseflesh. The King smiled as he looked over at Duke Drake, seeing the man fingering the gems inlaid on his broadsword's hilt. It had been a gift from Azreth to the Duke several years back. Azreth had been down in the slums of Avandere, trying to find a human who had been sneaking onto the Greater Herd plains and branding Azrein. It was the highest crime in the Kingdom, even more so than murder or abuse.

The man had ambushed the King, and was quite proficient with the blade. As the King was still young, he was much more cocky than he was now. And, as the saying goes, "there are many cocky swordsman, and many wise swordsman. But there are no wise, cocky swordsmen." That proved to be true when the King had attempted to perform a spectacular move -- one more suited to stageplay than to actual combat -- and he had gotten himself cornered. Apparently the Grand Duke [not being nobility back then, of course] had been strolling by the alley on his way to the docks, and had seen what the Brander was up to. With a roar, the Duke had charged the Brander, tackling him and lifting him body -- all 2oo pounds of him -- and throwing him a good distance, breaking the man's back.

Azreth had been profusely thankful, and right there, he had pronounced Edward Drake a Duke, and asked the man to work for him. Not until three years later had Edward proved himself a Noble with honor [which was so hard to come by these days], but also a true and valued friend of the King, who then promoted him to the position of Grand Duke.

Starting, Azreth realized they had reached Zel's, and he saw Ed poke his head in the door, smiling at his caution. Granted, there was good reason for it, but the King knew that if anything left out had...explosive qualities or was something the Alchemist didn't want touched, he would be standing outside of his house or would've already tidied everything up. Azreth shouldered the Duke aside, calling him paranoid under his breath with a grin, and took his outfit from the man's large hand.

Not bothering to duck behind a changing screen [for the two of them had...walked in on him many, many times before Azreth realized he needed to tell his guards not to let anyone in, even them], the King slipped out of his clothes and into the new ones. Striding over to a mirror to check how he looked, the King nodded. "You know what colors look good on me so well, Zel." The King chuckled. "Perhaps I should do away with the Royal Tailor and add one more thing to your long list of duties, hmm?" Azreth smiled and ran both of his hands through his hair, pushing the strands out of his face to add a bit more to the disguise.

He stood around idly, examining all sorts of various, oddly-shaped items, whirring glass and half-filled tubes placed haphazardly around Zel's home. The place itself was chaotic to the King's eyes, but he was sure that if he asked Zel where any one item was, the man could retrieve it in heartbeats, even without the aid of Skill. When Ed stepped back around from the changing screen, the King snorted, hiding his laughter, eyes narrowed in mirth. "Your ankles..." He pointed and hid a smile behind his hand. "I wasn't aware you were such an improper lady, Sir Drake." He squealed and darted behind Zel, as if running from an attack.

Azreth laughed as Zel gave him a pinched look, and brushed quite real dust from his tight breeches. "Well, then. Everyone speak to their Bonded and tell them the plan?" Even though the Azrein were not allowed to accompany them, the three all told their Bonded exactly what was going on and a relative time frame of their return. Of course, the Azrein always knew when their Chosen were in danger -- and could get to their location remarkably quickly [especially Valdien, for he could simply fly there]. When the two nodded their assent, the King belted on his knives and rapier, tucking his money satchel into the waistband of his pants against his skin -- if it was visible, it was just begging pickpockets to target you.

Azreth let out a breath, falling into a business state of mind. Even though he was almost always loyal and full of good humor, the King knew when the time for such things was unnecessary, and that was now."Everyone have everything they need and ready to let Two-Tone know the meaning of Justice?"
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Wed Nov 02, 2011 7:45 pm

Off he was in his own mind that when the two others arrived and entered, Zel didn't pay much attention. Oh he looked at them, grunted and went back to what he was doing. It was simply gathering explosive stuff together into a very small sugar glass jars. Smoke bombs, flash bombs, sound bombs... And the sugar coating helps it go down quicker. Only after did he notice there was something hiding behind his kitchen wardrobe. An eyebrow rose as he realized it was the hulking Duke. Sigh... Modesty. What a nice change from stripping in front of people.

The coffee cup on the counter was picked up, the rim dusted off with the thumb of his free hand and a sip was taken from the bitter black liquid. Eyes rolled at the mention of even more duties. " And your tailor doesn't have to resort to spells for fitted clothing, need I remind you that its only temporary for twenty-four hours. " The gaze moved to the exposed ankles of the Duke. Huh... "I Stop growing. Seriously. Soon you'll have to stand outside and change. Bah. . . Just tug on the hems like always to get them to fit right. " And like a hermit and learned man of the Arcane Arts, Zel went ' Bah' and shuffled off to grab his bag, filled it with little doo dads and trinkets from around the house, even nabbing a few shards of shattered mirror for some reason or another. Candles were brought too, but anything could be made out of candle wax so that was all good.


Seriously, there were more things he could have brought, but he had rings on his fingers charged so he was good to go in case he had to actually fight. There was a small flicker of anticipation that he could actually fight using his skills, but then again that was very dangerous and not at all safe for anyone other than himself. Such energy being pulled from the surrounding could cause chaotic effects that weren't very useful in settled areas. Wells could dry up, or become non-potable without reason, fish could fall from the sky, and at the most extreme, people could just fall over dead. Worst case scenario of course. Not that that would happen on something like this. And at last he was done packing, grabbed a gnarled walking stick from his coat rack and set his coffee mug in the sink for it to be cleaned when it was its turn.

Asked if ready, the Alchemist's whiskers seemed to bristle as an eyebrow rose, "Yes, yes. Lets get done with this before the festival leaves town. I want to get my hands on those winter cakes before they're all gone. Off we go. ...Ah, hrm. You look too neat. " Zel said, realizing that Azreth really did look too clean for a merchant. The hair might have been messy, but you can't hide perfectly clean skin that just screamed Nobility. Squinting, Zel reached over with a free hand to a jar of soot, pinched a little bit then blew it in the man's face. "There~. Now rub it off and remember to use your pants and cloak. Don't forget to grab the cloaks hanging on the line before you go~ "

With a hearty laugh, he exited his home and stood idly by waiting for the other two. Most of the time he spent it staring at his home wondering what he could do to make it look more haphazardly. Maybe adding a fake wing. Yes. Propped up with a wooden pole. Then again, that was for a peaceful time. There was too much to do to think of such silly things. There were papers to file, forms to write up and send out, information to gather, experiments to complete and places to visit. Not to mention his weekly report to the Circle--the governing body for the Alchemists of the land that were surprisingly neutral when it came to other nations.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:24 am

Ed glared at the King and at Zel's directions he bent his large frame over and tugged on his hems. They magically lengthened and once the hems covered his MANLY ankles he straightened up. Drake grasped his sword and wrapped some leather around its hilt to hide the gem's studded within. "I did stop growing, everything else just continues to shrink." After his swords hilt was safely hidden the Duke bounced up and down a little bit to loosen up his muscles. He glared at King least his Majesty but him about shaking the building.

Duke laughed heartily at the look on King's face as Zel dusted him with ash. The Duke hitched a shoulder and faked a limp, slouching his tall frame and putting a weave in his gait. This disconfigured his proud stance and made him look less tall. He eyed Zel's motley asortment of items. All the Duke needed was his sword, which was more practical to run with anyway. He shook hi head and said, "Yes I'm ready."

He followed Zel out and stretched back to his full height for a moment. It was an excellent day, good company, good tea and a prospect of battle. Edward grinned. Perhaps he would be able to have a real fight today and do what he had been raised to do, flatten any other warrior out there and protect those he loved. Ed flicked his long black hair and the sun glinted in his eyes. He hadn't felt this good in years. Well besides the odd day with his azrein, Zel and King and the day he bonded to Eric. Edward rubbed the leather covering his sword, he hate to cover it up, it felt funny to him this way but it was nessessary to conceal themselves and by hiding his ring under his shirt, spraying the King with soot and covering up his sword, their chances increased dramatically. Zel was so good at disguising himself that Ed didn't really worry about the mage alchemist.


Last edited by Duke Edward on Thu Nov 03, 2011 5:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:41 am

The King spluttered as his flawless skin was touched with ash, and grumbling, he pushed past Duke out the door. Hearing his words to Zel, the King couldn't help but offer a jab at the Duke's pride. "Everyyyything shrunk, you say?" King Azreth roared with laughter, jumping nimbly from the cobblestones of the street, up over Zel's head, and dropped down before the Alchemist, his legs crossed, waist bent, and arm extended in a mockery of a courtly bow.

Ah, he hadn't had the chance to use his stage skills in years! The Duke's good cheer was infectious, the King had to admit, and running his hands through his hair once more, the King reminded himself that now was not the time for goofing off; a single misstep and their lives could be forfeit. Ignoring the ornery glance he got from Zel at billowing the Alchemist's cloak on his landing, the King threw an arm around the man's shoulders, scrubbing vigorously at his cheeks and nose with his free hand. After his skin seemed to be a nice, solid dirt-streaked red, the King took the ever-present flask from his belt, taking a swig of the harsh liquor, spilling some down his front. The King coughed and sputtered, some of the alcohol spraying onto Zel's robes.

In less than a heartbeat, the King looked like a completely different man. Gone was the jovial, mischievous shine in his eyes; now replaced by a glazed, far-off look, an absent smile plastered onto his lips, which somehow seemed less full than a moment before. Broad shoulders were hunched, and his words were slightly slurred as he spoke, the rough scent of liquor on his breath as he spoke into Zel's face.

" 'Sooo, My loyal retainerrs. Off to the inn to ma-markeht our wares, and get rich!" Cajoling laughter echoed around the courtyard, and passing people gave the King dark, pointed glances. Through the King's facade, the two men caught the familiar quirk of the lip that could only belong to the King, showing a single canine. Under his breath he whispered to Zel. "Imagine, what would these people do if they knew it were their King acting the drunk fool of a merchant right in the shadow of his castle?" He tipped the two men a wink and staggered forward, dragging Zel along and waving impatiently for the Duke to catch up. "Wha' were yer names again, my boys? I'm Azoth, in case you forgot after our...12th..drink before noon!" A drunk smile lit the man's face.

The King shuffled forward merrily, whistling a melody morbidly off-tune -- quite unlike the King of the Isle, who could carry a tune if he was deaf, thanks to his Bard, Rethken. Oh yes. He had truly missed acting.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:59 am

Instinctively when something flew over his head, Zel ducked and raised his staff to bonk whatever it was over the head. With a growl he was about to bash the King on the head lightly for such brash and stupid action when he was now being used as an armrest. Or was it a shoulder to lean on for a spluttering drunkard who fancied himself a merchant. Zel's eyes rolled and he looked pleadingly at the Duke to deal with this...this...fool of a king!

"Bah! Don't spit that on my robes. They were clean once upon a time...Ack! " He now found himself being dragged along the way. The horrified passers-by were given sympathetic and apologetic glances as well as a few apologies that they really were just passing through, sorry for ruining the lovely day. "Now calm down there, Azoth. We're coming! We're coming. I am Mathos for the hundredth time! "

The look in his eyes and actions said it all, Azzy was having a blast acting again. It took quite the will power to prevent Zel from rolling his eyes and holding his head in his hands. Embarassing? Hardly. He wanted to laugh. Really laugh. Like, bust a gut laugh. " Would you care aiding me in keeping our rambunctious friend safe from himself? " Zel said, resigned and shaking his head. Smiling? His beard would show his amusement. But there was some, so that was okay. " Let's try not to get into trouble, shall we? I want to be able to get back home in one piece thank you ver much! "
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:42 am

While the three were still in the protected area of Azreth's courtyard, Edward on a whim did a cartwheel, he looked like a huge pinwheel and he was surprised at how far the cartwheel took him. He flipped himself back up and flanked Azzy's side after the King had finished his own gymnastic antics. Azreth evidently had less of a war with gravity then Edward.

At Zel's heartfelt request Edward draped a heavily muscle arm over the King's shoulders. "Tavlin's the name, structural support is the game." he slurred happily. "But my friend, trouble makes life interesting, its the guessing which kind of trouble it will be that is the fun part. A saucy wench or a daft pirate, I've seen them all. Pirate couldn't carry a tune in a mop bucket, I do however remember the song." And the Duke broke out into a mock drunk harmony.

"There once was a man, whose sleeves were to long
Tied himself up on the foremast long,
Stuck there for days with nary a song."

The corrus continued down through town until they reached the market area. This was always Edward favorite place as all the brigt cloth, baubles and books in the land seemed to gather here in droves. The Duke bent down and picked up a large coin. He sidled behind Azreth and dropped the rounded metal disk into Zel's pocket to puzzle over later. Duke grinned, he could just hear the alchemist now. "Now where did this come from." He was such a naughty Duke.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Fri Nov 04, 2011 1:45 am

The King laughed, seeing Ed's trick out of the corner of his eye. The man stopped here and there to pick over booths; in this one, an emerald with a flaw in it that resembled a bird -- oh, and over here, a wonderfully busomed bar wench who has her pretty brown eyes set on him. Perhaps if he could just sidle over to her and wrap an arm around her neck just like so, and graze his knuckles against her neck as he spoke rather foreward things in her ear and then he would take her up a rented room an-

The King yelped as Zel dragged him away, a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his lips as he called back to the woman, telling her his prudish retainer required his attentions, he was so sorry. He snorted and laughed, placing a hand on Zel's head and ruffling the man's red hair. Grinning up at the Duke, Azreth dropped a button from the woman's strained top down the Alchemist's hood before withdrawing his hand. You just never knew what strange things Alchemists accidentally picked up and forgot about these days.

The King staggered over to a brightly-awned stall, and his eyes widened considerably. Set out across the stall were scores of old tomes -- quite rare ones, to be exact. The man picked up one entitled "The Reign of Vandrian Verdisean, By His Owne Hand" and Azreth's whole facade abruptly crumbled, leaving the King staring solemnly at the dusty volume in his hands. Green eyes were shadowed as he stroked the tooling on the cover of the book, dust gathering on his forefinger as he did so. The sounds of Zel's movement ceased behind him, and he heard the Duke's words soften then quiet completely. The two politely let the man have his own thoughts for a moment.

"Bookkeeper." The man the King addressed started in surprise; just moments before had been a jovial, drunk man browsing his wares. Now there was a proud man, his eyes hard and his voice strained. "How much for this journal?"

"Ah, well you see, Gentlesir, that there is only this single copy in existence -- the late King was buried with his real Journal when he died, you know." The spindly man nodded enthusiastically. "The scribe who made this was actually a personal scribe of the old King, you know, before that cancer got him and his boy took the throne. Luckily for me, said scribe was my very own son, and he had copied the King's journal without the man's knowledge." The Bookkeeper's eyes shone proudly, and he waved a thin hand at the book in Azreth's hand. "For you, I'll make it thirty crowns."

"Thirty golden crowns." The way the King said it wasn't a statement. "That could feed a well-of family of seven for half a year. Who do you take me for?"

"From the looks of you and the way you carry yourself and speak, I'd say one who's rich enough to afford it and who desperately wants to read about the old bastard King's shortcomings and failures."

Azreth's eyes narrowed, and with no more warning than that, the King pushed himself off of the ground with leanly-muscled legs, tossing the book behind him over his shoulder, knowing that either the Duke's quick reflexes or the Alchemist's magics would keep it from falling to the cobblestones. The King crashed into the Bookkeeper, slender hands making a fist in the man's tunic, and with a shifting of his weight, the King had the man pinned with his back against the wall of the building behind his covered stall, feet an inch off the ground beneath him. "You are aware that it is treason to call any one of the Royal family -- dead or alive -- a 'bastard', don't you." Again, it wasn't a question. The Bookkeeper's eyes darted to the pair on the other side of the stall's counter, the whites of his eyes showing and his chest heaving in fear of the mad man holding him captive.

"I..I, yes of course, Sir. I was merely referencing the content within the pages of the man's own journal and how he saw himse-"

"The way he saw himself has nothing to do with people like you. You could never measure up to than man; a failure of his would be like a dream of yours come true, so high above you was he. Vandrian was a hero and served the Isle with his entire soul -- and you sell books that are by all rights, absolutely illegal for the population to get their hands on. Now you have two crimes against you. Treason towards the last King and Unlawful Distribution of Royal Property." A savage, wolfish grin split Azreth's face, showing his canines, his eyes shining too brightly. Barely-controlled rage began to project from the youth's mind, rolling over the people in the crowded marketplace in a wave. "If you would like to make it one more, we can handle this here and now with the Juris Macto. A fight to the death, my Bookworm friend, to show you just how wrong you are."

Azreth's arms shook as the man held back his anger at this man, the anger at his father for wasting away, and the guilt that tugged at him because when his father had died, he was out on a search to bring Azrein back to the world with Zel. And this man -- this commoner had to fucking gall to insult King Vandrian -- who was the best King the Isle had known in a hundred years. If another debasing word came from between the Bookkeeper's lips, Azreth himself would drag him back to the castle and wield the blade himself at his execution. The King's mind had completely forgotten that the reason the three of them had come through the market was to get to the Inn on the other side of town, and he was so focused on the sweating, shaking, terrified man in his iron-grip that he didn't notice the crowd start to build around the stall, effectively walling Zel and Edward in.

"So, then," the King said, ignoring the urine running down the Bookkeeper's leg, "shall we dance, my friend?"


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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:09 am

A coin was put in his pocket, he felt it. A button was added to his hood, he could tell it was there. What else would the fools put in his cloak today, Zel wondered as he pretended he didn't even know they were doing it. Alas... That was the way of things whene'er the three went out on a heist. Though, the oddest thing found on his cloak had been a ladybug pin. How it got there, even he didn't know. It probably had been a child that recognized the raggled cloak. Children were quite wonderful things....

Alas, with the ruler flirting with every thing with tits that walked by, it was proving difficult not to get a little grumpy. He huffed, squinted and was about to say something when he could feel the world's joy vanish from the very embodiment of joy. Stopping, Zel's gaze looked to the book held in the man's hands, read the title and could just sense what was about to happen. The world seemed to freeze, he could feel eyes begin to look over at them as things heated up. Or well, as the bookkeeper said something very, very stupid.

It wasn't often that the Alchemist would visibly flinch when there was violence that he wasn't apart of, but the Late King was a loss that just was painful. Zel felt himself responsible as he had been the one to suggest searching for a dream that turned out to be the greatest gift of all to the Island. He kept this quiet and told no one other than his own Bonded that secret as not to worry or upset his friends. He watched the book thrown aside, thought didn't move. Yes, it would fall without damage. A small bubble was placed around it, but its speed wasn't stopped. Who cared? It was a book.

" Azoth." Zel said loudly and sternly. This was getting out of hand. " Put him down. " Would the upset man listen? Probably not. But it had to be said. The crowd needed to hear this man's name and know that it wasn't their King asaulting a citizen. " For the Goodness of Man, Put him down or so help me I will make you. "

The Crowd had began to pool together, making a conspicous circle around them that was sure to attract the guards and then there would be an entire different situation. " Assault of another citizen of the Island is Ten years, Azoth. Remember that and remember your place! Let. Him. Down. "

With a tilt of the head, Zel snarled, openly annoyed, " Tavlon, if you would be so kind as to remove Azoth from that poor man and pay him six crowns, considering the book is indeed illegal and should be removed in case the guard is informed of the illegal nature of his sales. Also, please do remind me to check the registery to see if indeed is he spinning truth. " Yet through the grand annoyance, Zel reached out with his practiced will, feeling instead a buzz of a loud crowd as he latched onto Azreth's arm, pressing hard and willing those nerves to stop functioning for a few moments to drop that weapon he held too close to the man for the comfort of all.

Of course, this would draw attention.... and Zel was quickly figuring out just if this was the kind of attention that would be good to draw Two-Toned out. Yes.. Indeed it was. Amazing how the day suddenly turned in their favor.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:30 am

The duke caught the bubbled book just before it hit the ground. He hissed as the magic flowed over his hand...ick. He read the cover of the book and inhaled sharply. This would not be good, but he might get some descent action. He waited with Zel until the King looked like he was going to maul, burn and dance around the flaming remains of the unfortunately greasy bookkeeper.
Zel gave him the warning and the Duke sidled up to the kings tense, straining body. He leaned in and said in a low voice in the Kings ear.
"It would not be worth executing this scum now. Eric will be hungry soon I'll send him over with a warning bite, It will widen this sops eyes a little." Edward let out a long breath. "Let go my good friend." Edward stroked the book in his hand and did his best to broadcast inner strength and the sense that what the King should do was the right path.

Edward exerted himself a little bit and a fly flew right up the King's nostril. If that didn't get the enraged man's attention then nothing short of an army could. Edward wrinkled his handsome face as he did it and apologized to the fly afterwards.

The Duke's fine tuned battle senses alerted him to the growing crowd, it was like an itching that increased as time went on. An itch he couldn't scratch.

Hopefully his and Zel's efforts had calmed the King down enough. Ed noticed that Zel himself had an odd look on his face. Looking around Edward noticed that a rather lousy smarmy fellow with lank light hair and a whelpy build had appeared. He and his body guards had a respectable cushion of space around them. Ahh Two-tone perfect timing. The Duke alerted the King under his breath.

The time for sweet action was now. And to think he had waited all day for this. Azzy had picked up a book. Granted it was one the Duke also wanted to read but it seemed to attract the oddest characters. Yes, the duke read, just because he could touch the base of the tallest shelf in the library was not a reason to bug him about reading. He was perfectly sophisticated... most of the time and only half domesticated all of the time.
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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:11 am

Azreth snarled as the fly went up his nose; his two friends were obviously trying to call him off of the terrified man in his hands. With a shake of his head, the King came back to himself, and the roiling fury he was projected simmered and died down. The King let the man down, arching an eyebrow at him, turning smartly on his heel and leaping effortlessly over the counter, with his hand planted on the top of it as a fulcrum.

He landed on the other side in a crouch, snatched the book from Ed's large hands, and swiftly stuck it into the front of his shirt, tucked safely in his waistband against his skin. Eyes narrowed, the King drew five crowns from his money pouch, laying them gently on the counter. "For the book. Don't let anyone see you selling illegal things around here again. Brush up on the Sales Prohibitions.' The King lifted a hand, almost lazily, in a signal to his two shadows.

Azreth was so thankful to have them by his side; without their combined intervention, surely he would've let the anger get the better of him. The three of them just...knew each other so well by now that words were rarely needed. As the King's hand rose, the two followed him away from the Bookkeeper's stall, both of them a step behind him out of pure habit; none of them had had the time to cool down, get rid of their anxiety, and pick up their roles quite yet.

Unlucky for them, someone seized on the moment when the three of them were still strung tightly.

"Oi, boy." A show of uneven teeth. "Lucky your dogs were there to save you. Who knew what would happen if the master bit the innocent and the dogs pulled him off." The man in front laughed, and the half-circle of buffs around him followed. The man's hair was lanky, greasy, his eyes too bright. Drugs? Adrenaline? "You cheated that man out of gold. And because you cheated him out through threats and violence, that means that you cheated me out of gold through threats and violence, as most of his profit goes to me. And we can't allow someone to threaten us, can we boys?" The man -- Two Tone, obviously -- looked at the men spread behind him.

The people in the once-crowded marketplace slipped out of the square, darting into houses, shops, and down alleys to avoid the coming confrontation. Street vendors made themselves scarce, and owners of stalls and booths knelt down, putting their booth counters between themselves and the men in the center of the square.

Green eyes assessed the situation quickly and precisely; eight men on the right, eleven on the left. Strange formation -- lack of discipline or intentional organization? Fourteen of the men had swords, two had daggers, one a nasty winch-bow, and the last a heavy chain -- something that looked to be straight from a ship's anchor. Two-Tone himself had a pair of short swords, perhaps three feet in total length, including the hilt; one on each hip.

Azreth stood with a rogueish grin on his face, eyes shining boyishly. His hair was tousled from the confrontation, a shock of blonde falling over to half-way covering a bright green eye. His left hand rested easily, lazily on the ornate scabbard of his rapier, right hand on his side, hip cocked out with a nonchalant air. The Alchemist and Duke stood on either side of him, and Azreth turned his head to look at one, and then the other. "Well, my friends, I see rat infestation came back to Avandere."

This was the proper for conducting a street brawl you see. Most people didn't know this, but cockiness and posturing always had to come first -- it was the code of these sorts of things. After that came a showing of power; flexing of the muscles, light on your toes, an easy relaxation to your body. Following that, of course, came the threats spoken with an almost sickening air of confidence, and then it came down to showing the rats that three could beat twenty without so much as wrinkling their clothes.

Of course, the bad guys never knew how to take an insult, so they didn't necessarily always observe the proper etiquette. Sad, really, as Azreth always enjoyed foreplay. The King turned his attention back to Two-Tone, a laconic smile curving his lips almost sensuously. "I was always a fan of extortion, Two-Tone, but I think that's a bit overdoing it in your case, you know." The King waved a hand in the air in a circle, flashing his fingers in a complex sign. He knew to that to Two-Tone and his men, it would look like some sort of strange gesture, but to Drake and Althos, it would tell them Azreth's plan of attack.

Azreth goad leader; make angry, unthinking. Drake next as tank, distract. Zel behind enemies, trap. Zel secure comrades against skill attacks. Azreth stageplay toward leader. Once leader reached, surround, trap, confine, finish enemies, capture leader. if unable, surround leader, Azreth finishes.

All of that in the span of a few seconds, and the three had their plan. Azreth tuned out the leader's boasting as he went over the plan in his mind, searching for any faults, any weaknesses that could be avoided. Three against twenty were bad odds [for most people, anyway], and of course there would be times when the enemy could overtake them. However, finding no options that would leave them unduly at risk because of his plan, Azreth grinned. He would bait Two-Tone with words and actions, making him begin to lose his reasoning, hopefully getting him so mad he'd shout for the attack. Once that happened, Ed would go in as a tank, hacking everyone that came within a five-foot radius of him.

Zel would be able to sneak around the cluster of cronies, going behind them and Two-Tone as well. There, he would ensure that the King and Ed were not prone to any Magickal attacks; sensing for them or whatever he did. Azreth would use his stage-training in acrobatics to get to Two-Tone, ensuring that he would hardly touch the ground between him and the murderer. While he and Two-Toned were dueling, by that time the Duke will have incapacitated most of the cronies, and Zel and Ed would close in towards Two-Tone and whatever thugs were left. They would get rid of everyone but Two-Tone, surround him, and capture him. Failing that, they'd surround Two-Tone, and then the King would take him out.

Professional. Clean. Fun as hell, especially with all the flips and jumps he'd be doing to get to Two-Tone.

Out of the corner of his eye, the King saw Zel shake his head slowly, eyes rolling to the low-hanging clouds, while Drake grinned broadly. Azreth rarely got to use his acrobats in actual combat, but this would prove an absolute perfect opportunity. He would be insane to pass it up.

"Well, Toney, I think you've prattled on long enough." The King cut Two-Tone off and saw the man's face color at his new nickname. "Quite frankly, by the way you talk, one might think that you're worried about a large slab of meat, a beady-eyed scrawny thing, and a blonde-haired stallion." A quirk of the lip, a cock of the eyebrow. Azreth noticed that several girls peeked out of shutters from within their homes, and his heightened hearing caught excited whispers. Once this nasty business was finished up, he might have to hang around and get to know the locals. Best get this over with. "I say you didn't kill those people you claim you did. Personally, I believe your fat-faced friends around you ganged up on them, overwhelmed them with numbers -- leaving them no chance to fight back whatsoever, mind you -- and took all the credit." Toney-Tone spluttered on for a moment, spittle flying from his thin, cracked lips, and the King laughed.

"Well, then. By your reaction, I'd say I was right on the mark." A tensing of the man's neck, an opened hand, and the King flicked his wrist in a signal to Drake and Althos. Azreth met their eyes calmly, giving them each a nod of the head before speaking in a quiet, collected undertone.

"Ready, my friends?"

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PostSubject: Re: A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]   

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A King, An Alchemist, A Duke. [Azreth x Zel x Edward]
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