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  #1  
Old 05-21-2019, 09:49 PM
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The Ties that Bind Astra and Nasrith/ DaysUntold and UngainlyFool

Copper Coin

 

Weeks, literal weeks, of blazing heat, hard cracked earth beneath your boots and quickly rising dust storms, seemed to be ahead of you every step of the way on your route to the Northern Barrier Outpost. You'd been traveling the western trails, though staying clear of Bargainers Bedlam, the Fae Forests that most travelers found themselves caught in maliciously made deals in lue of survival through the woodlands. Stopping briefly to check the region map, you agree to take a few hours rest in a town called Calico, rumored safe haven for people like you... people looking to outrun something, or someone. You both have been this way before, the trek itself was normally not too hard, just long and generally boring. No caravan or vehicle could traverse too long on the Western route. The path, though started on easy earth, soon gave way to narrow ledges going up the cliffside and over Copper Cavern upon a weathered wooden bridge, which only seemed to worsen every time you made this journey. Crossing the bridge was always a gamble. You had to feel the old timber against your boot in just the right spot, to know if it would hold your weight or crumble, sending you to your death hundreds of feet below. One day, maybe someone would fix it, but the location and the resources just weren't ideal and no one had time to spare out in the Wildlands.

Whether it be good luck, fate or your own knowledge of the bridge, you made it across, though slowly. It swayed and creaked, but your footing found that sweet spot every time and eventually you made it across and continued onward. By mid-afternoon you found yourselves enjoying a lukewarm beverage inside Calico's only saloon, Copper Coin, named after the type of wood used in the building and not the cavern you just crossed.
left-aligned image

Cut-throats, Mercs, Brawlers mixed with the occasional run-away teen or unhappy housewife littered the large, noisey room. It was a decent establishment considering the patronage.Built entirely fromThese scrubby trees were relatively short,
rarely growing over 15' (4.6 m) tall. They were comprised of many small
outwardly growing branches. Their wood was reddish-brown in color
and smelled somewhat of cinnamon. They were covered in thin,
dark-red bark and had pale-green leaves that were bordered with white.
These leaves turned to yellow when winter was approaching or as
the tree neared death
Vundwood trees, the coppery color of the inner bark giving dimension to the main room. A banjo and harmonica played by two older men set at a middle table brought a sense of backwoods nostalgia and busty, boisterous women tended to the customer.
right-aligned image

It seemed like a happy place, at first glance. Appearances, as you well know, are deceiving though. A red curtain is parted off beside the left of the long,polished bar counter. A man in a black and grey pinstripe suit with a dark purple tie waits just in front of it with folded arms and an observant, piercingly alert gaze. Against his hip are two holstered pistols, easily noticeable to even an untrained eye. You hear some commotion from within the room and he closes the curtain immediately. From just his clothing, you understand he's not a common thug, but probably connected to one of the larger criminal networks hubbed in the Wildlands. It was usually best to leave that type up to their own business.

From where you are seated, you have a good view from open shuttered windows, no glass in the panes, either designed that way...or had been removed somehow. The town of Calico is quiet, aside from the ongoings inside the Copper Coin. You've earned this brief moment from the weeks along the dry roads, it had been too many days since you last felt the comfort of a bed and soft pillow beneath your head. The serving lass comes to offer you another round, her bosom almost touching your ear as she stands between your chairs. "Notha round'a cups lovelies? Mayhap a taste o'the brewmakers special?"


-OoC-
Welcome Astra and Nasrith to your RP Sample ! I hope you both enjoy it and have fun in creating this scene for you backstory. This is a recent memory that your characters share upon your travels to the Northern Barrier Outpost. Please feel free to be as creative as you'd like. No need for rolls. If you have any questions, just send a PM or an OOC spoiler. Thanks so much for applying, Im looking forward to reading your posts!

Meredith

Last edited by MeredithS; 06-06-2019 at 11:39 AM.
  #2  
Old 05-22-2019, 10:18 PM
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Claire Blackwater
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Claire's face took on a strained expression as she leaned to her right, pulling her ear away from the barmaid's chest. Background noise nearly drowned out the rapid clink-clink-clink of Claire's fingernails on the glass in front of her. She looked up into the barmaid's face with its stupid, vacant, manufactured smile and pictured what it would look like if she were to smash her glass into it. Claire forced a polite smile onto her face, not showing any teeth.

"Um, yes please," she said, and wiggled her empty glass. "I'd actually like another one of these, please."

The barmaid turned to Dallen and Claire gave the neckline of her chemise an upward tug. She leaned back into the worn, cracked leather and began looking about the room with practiced nonchalance—too systematic or too eagerly and one might as well wear a sign on one's head. In between scans of the room, Claire watched Dallen's interaction with the serving lass. She made eye contact with her brother behind the girl's back. Claire raised her eyebrows, cocking her head slightly to the side as if to say: Is this the kind of thing you like?

The corner of Claire's mouth curved up into half a wry smile, and she looked away towards the bar lest she startle their waitress with a loud guffaw. The barman was leaning on the polished countertop flirting with a few serving girls. To their left...

"Pardon," said Claire, the smile gone. "What's going on behind that curtain?"

Claire gestured towards the red curtain with her head and put some awe into her voice.

"I saw a man with pistols there, is everything all right?"



 

Last edited by Astra; 05-22-2019 at 11:11 PM.
  #3  
Old 05-23-2019, 02:22 AM
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No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle...
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The serving girl leaned over the table between the two of you, giving Dallen a tantalizing view of round milky breasts that threatened to spill forth from her corset at a moment's notice. She was young, her face the epitome of innocence, but a knowing glimmer behind her eyes betrayed her more worldly experience for anyone caring to notice.

At the"Pardon," from Claire, she cocks her head back to the young woman, a brief flash of annoyance showing on her inviting features before melting back into a cordial smile.

"Oh hun, that ain't nothin' to worry yer pretty lil head bout." she reassured, her smile growing while one eyebrow arched knowingly. "If'n yer lookin' for some priv'cy an' a man with a nice pistol, we can oblige ya," she offered with a smirk.

Standing once more, she put a delicate hand on the curve of her slender hip. "Reckon some round here might even pay ya for the pleasure, 'specially if'n ya wanna stay a while. Morris' always looking for new girls. Gotta make a livin' someways," she continued, her eyes now focused back on Dallen.

"LILA!" a gruff voice called from the kitchen and the barmaid looked up at the sound.

"Be back with them drinks," she said, racing off towards the back. A few steps away she spared a glance back towards Dallen, her lips curving into a seductive smile.

 

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Last edited by DaysUntold; 05-23-2019 at 09:14 AM.
  #4  
Old 05-23-2019, 10:02 AM
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Dallen Blackwater
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One of Dallen's bare arms was tucked neatly underneath the table, rolling a tingle of electricity back and forth across his fingertips. His other was planted aboveboard, supporting his gently lolling head. His empty mug had been relegated to the center of the table and for the last five minutes, he had been making less than subdued faces at the man in the pinstripes.

"Same," he said, wagging his wrist in the server's direction. She came to his side of the table and Dallen's view of the red-curtained room was cut off, replaced by something much better. Oh! His gaze trailed past her chest and up to her mascaraed eyes. He batted his lashes prettily at her. "Please?"

When the barmaid turned back to Claire, Dallen took the opportunity to right himself and straighten his open-faced vest. They had spent far too long in each other's company for him to miss his sister's look. He shrugged and his mouth opened in a crook-toothed smile. What else was there to do in a place like this?

Dallen snorted and his grin grew wider. "It has been awhile sis. Loosen up." He said it just loud enough for the serving girl to hear, but it was all just a game. Lila was out of his mind before she had taken three steps.

"You'd run this place in a month," he said with a respectful dip of his brow. The silence of long-time companions was about to settle over the table when Dallen leaned in. There was a conspiratorial twinkle in his eye as his mind wandered back to the curtain. "So, worth it?"


 

Last edited by Nasrith; 05-23-2019 at 10:05 AM.
  #5  
Old 05-23-2019, 11:30 AM
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Handful a' rattlers...
right-aligned image

A handsome man with a chiseled jaw and blue eyes that made women swoon walked into the bar. Behind him a larger more exotic brute stumbled in, the lively atmosphere and loud music being the only things keeping him from drawing all attention to them. Shep scanned the bar quickly and efficiently. His intelligence was usually good, but these two moved fast and were almost always a step ahead. He wouldn't be surprised to find that they'd already moved on.

Luck was in his corner this day though, as he found who he was looking for near the center of the saloon. Better still, a pair of luscious.. eyes.. had captured their attention. Walking by a table, he took a shot glass from it's owner and downed it in a quick swig that made it appear as if it were calf's milk. He put it back upside down, it's occupants staring wide-eyed at him, but none daring to say a thing. The two he was seeking weren't the only ones with a reputation.

Occupied as they were with the curtain and barmaid, neither of the two were aware of Shep's presence until he laid a hand upon the lovely woman's shoulder.

"Well, now, look what we have here. If it aint lil Claire and her big brother Dallen." He looked back to see Snap still stumbling around and cocked his his head towards the table, "Get that thing off yer leg and get ova here. We're in the presence of celebrities. Ain't polite to keep a fine lady like this waitin'."

As his partner finally made his way to the table, his hand squeezed tighter on the delicate shoulder of the young woman. "Who'da thought this lil thing woulda been the one to cut poor Clay from a**hole to appetite? Careful with that one," he grunted, nodding towards Dallen, "he's meaner than a handful a' rattlers."

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Last edited by DaysUntold; 05-23-2019 at 11:44 AM.
  #6  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:47 PM
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in character
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close enough
Calm, cool, and collected eyes at the table panned over in unison to the the source of Shep's exasperation. They missed the impressive part, where the dragonborn, too wide for the door frame chose to crawl through it like a true monster rather than simply turn sideways. The muscles, the bulk, the hardened indigo scales which might had caused a moment of indecision as to their own capabilities were undermined as the brute hopped up and down on one scaly foot causing dust to dance down from the rafters over his head and even a good distance away. The offending tumbleweed remnants were ripped away by his large hands as he gave up shaking it off in favor of speed. The two halves lay broken and defeated on the coppery wooden floor. A clever eye might have caught white claws slide out from his blue fingertips in the effort.

Snap rushed up to the table to join his friend. He placed his bulk behind Dallen's chair and got himself into an imposing standing position. He loomed over them. He loomed over Shep even. He loomed all the way into the low-hanging oil chandelier above them with the long horns on his head. It went into a shaking sway, causing uneven shadows to play over the faces of everyone assembled. It swung like a metronome waiting, daring for the first mortal note to be played.

Shep had said to "get in character" whatever that meant. Shep was a character, maybe that was it. He always said the smartest and funniest things that left Snap wondering over their real meaning. "Appetite. Har-Har! I get it! Good one, boss." Snap's broad head rotated down to the guy he was supposed to watch out for. Breath that smelled of ozone and desert cascaded down at Dallen, " You like curtains, snake? I'll put curtains on yer eyes..." Wait, that didn't come out right. "'Cause you'll be dead, I mean. Right?" Wheew, saved it. Snap nodded at Shep to continue.

The muscle of the two had an axe strapped to his back that might be for executions based on the size of it and some large, pistol gripped firearm in a leather tube across his lower back, tantalizingly just out of reach of the rattler's hand. But he seemed just as eager and willing to use those large hands as well.
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  #7  
Old 05-23-2019, 01:16 PM
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  #8  
Old 05-24-2019, 12:23 AM
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Claire Blackwater
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The hand landed on her shoulder and Claire startled; her head snapped round towards it, eyes wide. Claire followed the arm upwards until she met its owner's blue eyes. The man called to his partner and squeezed her shoulder even tighter. Claire felt acutely aware of his grip, as though she could feel the man's pulse through his fingertips where they bit painfully into her skin. The dragonborn came up behind Dallen as Claire's pulse began to race. She squirmed in her seat but he held her fast. Claire's eyes slid from the blue-scaled behemoth down to her brother. She held his gaze intently, her eyes wide in alarm. They needed a plan, and fast.

Claire inhaled and, the way she'd learned in the aftermath of Blackwater, flung her words across the empty air towards Dallen.

I think we should run. They may have backup. I'll try to startle the blue one. Claire shifted her shoulders again. He's got a strong grip on me. I'm scared, Dal.

She paused a moment and added: The usual signals.

Claire let the breath go. It came out shakily; she was trembling. Fear and adrenaline. She had a pair of daggers strapped to her upper thighs but could she get them out without provoking a reaction? Doubtful. She'd have to improvise. Claire kept her eyes on Dallen, waiting for his response. Under her fingers the pint glass had grown warm from her touch. Maybe...?

"Clay?" said Claire, fighting to keep her voice steady and stalling for time. "Doesn't ring a bell to me. Who was he?"

Unbidden, memories of her last few kills floated up from her subconscious. The intensity of recollection overwhelmed her senses for a moment and blotted out the man's reply, if he even gave one. Claire blinked them forcefully away as Dallen made his coded response. This was it. Claire tightened her grip on the glass and locked eyes with the blue dragonborn looming over Dallen. This monstrosity and its partner were here to kill them—or worse. Claire took another deep breath and reached out toward the dragonborn. With as much mental force as she could muster she sent a telepathic shout:

BEHIND YOU!

Trusting her brother to act his part, Claire turned and swung the beer glass as hard as she could at the blue-eyed man's face.


 


  #9  
Old 05-24-2019, 02:12 PM
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Dallen Blackwater
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Shep and Snap. It had to be these two, didn't it? They'd hounded the twins halfway across the Wildlands and had a pair of shootouts to show for it. The four of them were practically old friends - that is, if friends occasionally tried to murder one another. Which come to think of it, they did in this line of work.

Dallen watched the hand come down on Claire's shoulder. The last man who tried to handle her like that had lost an arm. Burning with sudden rage, Dallen rose from his chair. Or at least, he tried to. Instead, he was jammed roughly into his seat by Snap's beefy mitts. His jaw clenched and the next words out of his mouth came in a growl. "Get. Your hands. Off her. "

A wave of nervous energy rolled across the room. Patrons downed their drinks and tensed. The barman reached beneath the counter as the serving girls cleared the floor. The pair of string musicians came to a record-scratching halt. Every single person had seen this show before.

At the table, nobody noticed.

Dallen heard Claire's voice clear as day. That meant the fear he sensed there was real. He loosened his white-knuckled grip on the table and sniffed. It was a nothing movement, a tic to anyone except his siblings. Between Dallen and Claire, it was one of a hundred signals in an intricate language the twins had spent two decades perfecting. This one meant: run!

The sorcerer watched as Claire's eyes went vacant again, the way they did whenever she used her telepathy. If the thumping of chairs from Snap's graceless turn wasn't enough of a sign, the tankard arcing towards Shep's face clued him in. It was time to act. He grabbed the bottom of the table and heaved, trusting his sister to get out of the way. Then, whirling, he yanked the shotgun from the bumbling lizard's waist.

The roaring firearm sundered the silence, and all hell broke loose. "Play!" he ordered, gesturing manically to the musicians. Dallen snapped the butt of the weapon into a weasel of a man that got too close, then started to back towards the door.

Get out of here Claire!

"Oy, pinstripes!" Despite the desperate situation, Dallen couldn't help himself. "The lizard said your mum was a trollop, but he tupped her anyway!"


 



Last edited by Nasrith; 05-24-2019 at 05:03 PM.
  #10  
Old 05-24-2019, 04:58 PM
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Snap"Huh?" The sound of thirteen whispering and shrieking she-devils pierced Snap's head at once, sending a shiver down his scaly spine and making him involuntarily spin around at the warning. His shoulders slumped in defeat and embarrassment as he felt the familiar tug at the fat holster at the base of his back and knew immediately what had happened. He fully expected a ragged hole to form in his face but instead there was just the crash of a table and a blast that put a two foot hole in the roof. "Play!" Dallen yelled.
It's a living...Marion had settled in Calico three years ago and almost immediately had gotten the gig at the Copper Coin Since that time he had been witness to countless bar brawls and shootouts. He knew the drill. If some lunatic with a gun said play, he played. He set down his ale with a shaky hand and adjusted the bowler on his head. The steam piano cranked to life under his expert hands and the previously loaded tune groaned to a dragging start.
Snap part deuxRealizing he wasn't going to die at that moment, Snap finally turned back around. Seeing Shep had his hands full and was nursing a bloody face, the dragonborn snatched up the spilled table by its legs and pointed it toward the retreating figure of Dallen like a shield or maybe a battering ram. "Come on, Shep. Stop messing around and snag her." He heard Dallen try to bring in the man behind the curtain into play but misunderstood the words entirely. "Har-Har. Pinstripes. Back at you, snake!" He thought it quite clever that they were calling each other lizard and snake. He slowly began marching toward the brother, step for step with him and keeping the table between them.
The enemy of my enemy
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A piercing whistle filled the room then and all eyes turned toward its source. The curtain was drawn back again and the well dressed man in the suit stood there with two fingers in his mouth. At the impossibly loud sound, the player piano slowly ground to a halt again under orders from a higher power and the room got eerily silent. The scrape of a chair behind Dallen cut the still air as a thug with a sword got up from his spot near the door and filled it with his body effectively blocking the only visible exit. An enormous woman covered in tattoos appeared at Pinstripe's side. Without a word, Pinstripe drew one of his sidearms and casually shot Snap in the leg, sending the blue beast sprawling to the ground with a cry of pain. The table rolled away lazily. Everything seemed to be working just as Dallen had hoped...only the other pistol was now trained squarely on Claire.
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Last edited by UngainlyFool; 05-24-2019 at 08:19 PM.
  #11  
Old 05-25-2019, 11:48 AM
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Handful a' rattlers...
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"What the f-" was all Shep could get out regarding Snap's sudden turn before a mug crashed into the side of his face. The world spun before him and he staggered back, struggling to even land on a knee. He cradled his face in a hand as blood dripping down in small rivlets between his fingers.

'F'ker drew off and hit me!' he thought, cursing beneath his breath.

He was still trying to stop the world from going arse up when a gun shot pierced the clamour in the saloon, the sound reverberating in his already ringing skull. The silence that followed was welcome, but brief as Marion began to play.

The song that cut through the silence was an odd combination of unsettling and soothing. Fitting in the moments before bitter enemies once again became unlikely allies.

Another shot rang out and Snap went down a few feet away, thick crimson flowing down the vibrant blue scales of his leg. Shep caught the run away furniture and rolled it as he quickly crept over to his friend, a hand still pressed to his wound, and peeked over the table. The man seemed to have shifted his attention to Claire and a woman appeared behind him, the movement behind her showing three more armed men waiting inside. Dallen's ruse was clever, but it seemed to have backfired. Shep ducked back down, and drew his pistols. "Yer an awful lookin' sight," he whispered to Snap, "you ready?"

At the dragon's nod, he peeked back up from the table and two shots rang through the room. One hit the gunman squarely in the chest, while another sent the oil-lamp chandelier crashing to the ground between them and the woman. She fled back through the red curtain and another man went arse over kettle trying to avoid the splashing of the flame-lit oil. Poor fool failed though, and instead stumbled around the side of the saloon while others tried to put him out.

'Buy'n us a minute,' he thought as he sank back down behind the table. He already had a pistol fixed on Claire and Dallen as they turned his way.

"24," he yelled to them. What it really meant was 24 hour truce, but he didn't have the time for an explanation, nor did they need it. This wasn't their first rodeo together.

With the woman gone, Marion took up the opportunity to add a little ambiance to the chaos, and soon the string players joined in as well.

He slid the pistol over the hard worn wooden floor to Claire. He knew that she was more than capable with the knives that she always carried, not to mention the magic she harnessed and, come to think of it, he wasn't even sure that she knew how to shoot. Still, sometimes the threat of a gun is more cripling than the gun itself.

As for he and Snap, this wasn't the first time they'd been disarmed and they'd learned a long time ago to keep back up arms at hand. Shep turned, allowing Snap to take the shotgun from his back while he retrieved another pistol from a holster in his boot.

He saw the bartender peeking out from behind the bar nearby, shotgun in hand, and he shook his head. 'No time to be a hero, old man,' he thought, and sure enough the bartender ducked back down. Crashing came from the other side as the lackies behind the curtain emerged to try'n put the flames out.

"Time to go," he yelled to the other two as he got ready to bolt towards the doors.

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Last edited by DaysUntold; 05-25-2019 at 06:52 PM.
  #12  
Old 05-26-2019, 12:55 AM
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Claire Blackwater
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The pistol skittered across the grooves in the wood floor and came to rest under Claire's boot as she caught it with her heel. Claire bent down to retrieve the pistol cautiously, keeping her eyes on Shep. She felt her fingers grasp the ornate handgrip and straightened back up. As she did, Claire's left hand lifted her skirt at the hip, revealing a small leather scabbard strapped to her thigh from which she produced a simple dagger. At the mention of a twenty-four-hour truce, Claire narrowed her eyes at Shep.

"After grabbing me like that I'd say you're unwise or foolish to give me a gun." Claire nodded toward the dead man in the pinstripe suit and added: "But you did save my life, there."

Claire looked down and hefted the pistol. It had a comforting weight to it.

"My brother spared your pet iguana," she said, pointing at Snap with the pistol. "You saved me. I'd say we're square today."

Clair beckoned to Dallen with her head. She moved to the window she'd seen earlier with no glass, keeping her eyes on Shep. Claire's expression darkened.

"Twenty-four hours, then," she said. "After that don't think I'll be so courteous. Touch me like that again and I'll slit your throat."

Claire held Shep's gaze for a brief second and then vaulted out the window. With a quick glance in either direction she began crossing the street.


 
  #13  
Old 05-28-2019, 09:46 AM
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Dallen Blackwater
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"24," Dallen barked, echoing Shep's proposal. His sister was right. "Call this one a draw then."

Honor among thieves. Normally Dallen would spit on the idea, but some ways back the seeds of respect had taken root. He trusted these two, at least for the span of 24 hours.

Whipping around to face the door, he braced his shoulders against Snap's stolen shotgun. Standing there was the thug who had joined the battle a moment before, his brown eyes growing wide as they stared down the twin barrels. Dallen let out a booming laugh and pulled the trigger, sending the bruiser flying backward and blowing the front door off the Copper Coin.

"You've got till the count of five," the sorcerer called out behind him. "5!"

He stepped through the doorway at the same time his sister vaulted the window.

"4!"

The spent shotgunned clack-clacked to the dusty ground.

"3!"

The more world-wary patrons ducked for cover.

"2!"

A tumbleweed screamed a silent scream.

"1!"

Dallen reached a hand towards the tavern, splaying his fingers wide.

"Zero." A red streak leaped from his palm and the face of the Copper Coin erupted in flame.

His face crooked into a smile as he saw the azure blue of scales careening out a side window. Turning casually, he caught up with his sister. Looks like they wouldn't be coming back this way for awhile.


 
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