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  #46  
Old Feb 26th, 2013, 08:04 PM
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"Crystal. My skin is plenty thick. My patience on the other hand isn't what it used to be."
"And that was never much to speak of either. Not unless it was one of his little toys."

Why was it whenever someone's joke went over poorly they blamed the audience? He'd expected them to have some knowledge of the material plane of course, but focused on the fiendish cults and such rather than having a good grasp of the public at large.
"Cypher is wise, listen to her. If all the world knows of you is that you're frightening murderers that appear from from the shadows to kill a number of very powerful and well protected people, including the king of a great realm, the people will see you in a light as bad as the monsters you fight. Their leaders probably won't take well to that sort of a threat either. Even if the threat isn't meant for them, even if they don't know about the bridges you've burnt to put that strike together so quickly and so thoroughly, they can't ignore that sort of axe hanging over their heads. By showing you've got a human side, that you care about right and wrong, and in showing that you have an awareness of politics you'll go a long way to softening the impact."

"In the vein of political maneuvering I'd consider that you credit Princess Aldamil as aiding in the recovery of Xander's body. She's recognized the danger inherent in accepting the fiends to one's breast the way her father did, and doesn't want to see her people fall prey to them. But Aldamil is also in a delicate spot. Her youngest brother is still missing yes? I'd hazard a guess that the Fiends snatched him and are currently ensuring that he'll make a more tractable pawn than even his father. She's popular, but she doesn't have the type of widespread support she'd need to simply expel the Fiendish churches and their followers wholesale. They're too well entrenched in society and the halls of power. Attempting to compromise with them may seem to be necessary, but it may also wind up being the first step down the same path her father took."
That is if the fiends didn't simply try to lure her into letting her guard down long enough to replace her with her brother. "At this point we need to draw her away from the left hand path without getting her killed."

Her having been part of recovering Xander's remains was a good step. She'd been partially responsible for his death, somewhat indirectly somewhat directly. They'd returned Deison's body without question but the Sharakans had held onto Xander. It would balance those scales. Combine that with the statement her presence had at the engagement party, in the company of her uncle, and it could play well with the Shalians and the rest of the international community. Externally she'd be solid, it was the internal politics that would be the real problem.

"Realistically there's only two ways that the Sharak/Shali situation can reach anything like a conclusion. One: One side wipes out the other completely and utterly. Two: They make peace, both politically and spiritually. Anything else will simply mean a continuation of the feud as each generation picks up the weapons of their fathers and acquire new wounds by seeking vengeance for the old. Even should one side conquer the other it would only be temporary. As is, the Sharakans would never accept the rule of Shali and vice versa. People that refuse to be ruled cannot be forced to obey, not in the long run. The Halvan empires found out just how sustainable it is to police every man woman and child in a country."
Simple math ensured that. Every soldier under arms was one less man farming crops or engaging in trade or exploring the extents of the magical or scientific realms. You simply couldn't have a large enough army.
"Mass murder of innocents is heinous and any sane person would stand against it. Even the attempt would bring about a crisis of faith, fracture unity, and weaken our moral fiber to the point where we'd be easy prey for the fiends. That leaves our only reasonable solution being peace. Not a quick or easy process, but it can and has happened before. for it to happen we need Aldamil in control and not under the influence of the fiends. Start considering how you can make it so."

There's a brief pause as Morgan considers how the recovery of Xander affects his plans.

"Is his body in town and is it still protected by that aura? I've got a seer's hunch, but I don't want to get anyone's hopes up, so if I and a couple of other people could get in to see it privately that would be very good."
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  #47  
Old Feb 26th, 2013, 09:31 PM
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There is a wry note to Bane's 'voice' now. "As I said. I know little of the politics of the Freeborn. I am a warrior, a soldier you might say. Though...I can see the sense of some of what you say. You would be best served speaking with Cypher when she arrives though. I am here to get people off balance, not to truly participate in the talks."

When Morgan talks of the body again Bane tips the hat back further, giving him calculating look. "He will arrive with Cypher and he is dead, though there is definitely something...odd about the body. not a typo, it's presumably the name (or at least the short version) of another ChildRising said it was from the touch of the divine yet for some reason my sword is...restless in his presence, which it normally only does when Min and hers are around." He grins slightly. "I am increasingly getting the impression that you meddle as others breathe Morgan. I imagine that you'll soon find yourself in some interesting trouble." He was beginning to sound almost like Shin.

~MTWC

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Old Feb 27th, 2013, 05:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ajikis
"Sometimes I envy human noses."
Mrith raised her eyebrows at that while raising a short smile, slowly.
In all honesty, she didn't really like those kind of jokes.
"Ah? I'd say the same but I've already got way too much human in me to care for more."

Then, just like that, a thought struck her.
"Eh! That reminds me: do you plan to spend a day or two in Halvanna? I've told a friend I'd exceptionally be granting the city visit today and there is a good chance he might show up before too long. He's like me, so I thought having him meet new dragons might be good for the soul. Especially since he is such a... hum... 'urban' kind of dragon."

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  #49  
Old Feb 27th, 2013, 05:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bane
"I imagine that you'll soon find yourself in some interesting trouble."
Mort pipes up, proving that the familiar had been included in the telepathic link. "Soon? I think you mean right friggin now. Or do you think setting yourself against Zera and the Nine isn't interesting enough?"
Morgan gives a mental shrug. "Yes I meddle Bane, but you needn't worry that I'll wind up another Zera. I don't seek control and find taking away the choices of others abhorrent. What I do is find worthy individuals and seek to help them get closer to worthy goals. I seek out and find options, then advise and let them make their own choices, helping as requested. The only time I'll intervene is when those choices bring harm to others." Gears whir and metal rods slide when Morgan presses a button on his staff, causing it to collapse down to the size of a short rod. He sticks it in a loop on his belt, out of the way while he's sitting.
"The only difference between now and the past is scale. Before I helped some people from my home town start up a bakery, tracked down the occasional crazed murderer, or provided some pilgrims headed to the holy city with a place to stay and a cart. Now my work involves helping a king fight a god controlling usurper, freeing my goddess from bondage, and helping a princess figure out how she's going to pull her country back from the edge of darkness."
"If you think my methods shady or underhanded you need to remember I'm not like most of these people, yourself included. I don't have massive personal power to shatter mountains or re-write reality, no piles of accumulated wealth to buy and sell resources on scale, no ancient artifacts from the time before recording, no widespread organization of hundreds or thousands at my command. What I've got is a few extraordinary friends, the eighth circle of spells, and my wits."
"Or at least half of them"
"Har de har. Mort could you please keep an eye out for the people we've discussed. I'll snag a plate of salmon for you if a servant comes by."
"Sure. I'll let you know if I overhear anything interesting."

The big cat hops from Morgan's lap and wanders over to plop down at the base of a marble column near the entrance.

"Speaking of pre-historical artifacts I'm assuming the swords you speak of are Witherbane and Sinbreaker?" That was promising, very promising. If the effect was ongoing and able to be sensed by the other swords... Morgan tries his best not to get his hopes up, but the return of Xander would not only be the righting of a tragedy but might just be the solution to a couple of problems.
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Old Feb 27th, 2013, 08:30 PM
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Both Maul and Ajikis give a slight shrug, though as usual it is the Dragon that speaks. "Difficult to say. Depending on what is discussed here we may need to stay to talk things over more. The Council will likely use the opportunity to get us to speak with a few other representatives as well. Elern, for example, has been pricklier than normal recently so speaking on neutral ground would be a bit of an advantage, though why Rinn feels it needs them is beyond me."

"After Halva they are the country we trade most with." Maul's tone is measured and careful as always. "Give them a year or two as things are going now and we'll be trading with them more than Halva." There was a hint of wariness towards the end.
OOCI assume by 'Nine' you are referring to the Seven + Ciin + Deimos?

Bane tips the hat down again before responding with more than a hint of amusement. "By my sword, it was not a criticism Morgan. My sister meddles as ten men would breath while juggling twins, two annoying younger siblings and helping our father to lead the Children." Morgan catches a slight grin from the other mage.

When the question of swords come up Bane is obviously surprised. "Interesting. I assume they are famous weapons to the Freeborn then? Yes, that would make sense. We took them from Ira's fortress during my sister's Swordright. She wields Witherbane and I Sinbreaker. They are remarkable weapons. Do you Freeborn have more like them? I know many Children that would offer all the spoils they have taken from Fiends for such a sword."

~MTWC
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Old Feb 28th, 2013, 01:20 AM
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Nevh didn't care much for the conversation that had taken over her table but Hunts' last comment gave her a better understanding as of why he might have been chosen as a representative. The man wasn't just an unconcerned or uninformed hunter, it seemed. It made more sense.

It was a strange context considering Quall was already trading with them more than Halva. But then again,their market was in dire need of expansion.
Mrith seemed pleased with Ajikis' answer but quite indifferent to their political situation with Elern.
As far as she was concerned, the psionic military regime was quite a tasteless and vulgar decision. Tricks of the mind were so... not dragonlike.
She just shrugged.
"Meh. The things humans do for power..."

Nevh resisted the urge to roll her eyes on that. Her sister was starting to get on her nerves and she hadn't accepted to bring her there to babysit her.
She rose to put an end to this.
"Maulkic, Ajikis. It's been a pleasure. We must return to our business, so you'll have to excuse us."
Mrith would be allowed to play with them after the meeting. Even after knowing her for so long she still wasn't sure of how to handle her in public. In doubt, she opted to say as little as possible and try to avoid treating her like a kid.

Unless they would be interrupted again, she would go on with her mentorship until the meeting would begin.

Last edited by Blue; Feb 28th, 2013 at 01:21 AM.
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  #52  
Old Feb 28th, 2013, 07:20 PM
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"Famous, powerful, and of great historical significance. They are two of the Eighth Blades of Sharlan, created by Alistair "Shade" Teel, for the original Eighth Knights. The Eighth Knights and the entire country of Sharlan were created by Fisali to guard the Eight Peaks region and Ahkea as a whole from incursions by fiends. After Sharlan split into Sharak and Shali, The Eighth Knights, Eight Peaks region, and Eight Blades remained with Shali."

"The blades tend to be picky about who they will allow to wield them, some more than others, but no more than a couple are in the hands of wielders at any given time. While they are between wielders they are traditionally kept in the custody of the Shalian royal family. Of the original eight swords two are said to have been destroyed, one around five hundred years ago, and another during the Betrayer Wars a half century ago. Of the remaining six two are currently in use by Shalians, two are in the possession of the Shalian royal family, and two, your two, were believed to have been lost to the fiends."

"The Eighth Blades are Witherbane, Sinbreaker, the Sword of Mourning, the Blade of Stars, Invidia's Bane, Death Dealer, Traitor's Folly, and the Unnamed Blade. Traitor's Folly and Death Dealer are the two that were destroyed and the Sword of Mourning and Invidia's Bane are in the care of Shali. Except in extreme situations Witherbane is considered the most powerful of the lot."

"I wouldn't be too quick to advertise that The Children have two of the blades, nor would I hold my breath on being allowed to try to find wielders for the remaining two from your ranks either. Shali and the Eighth Knights will feel that the swords rightfully belong to them, and being artifacts of Sharlan history right from the founding they're especially valuable. Princess Celes might find herself catching some political bother just for failing to demand their return."
It didn't matter that it didn't make sense, nor that they were better off in the hands of the Children in the Dark than in the vaults of Ira. What mattered was that Shalians were stiff necked, hidebound, and well known for following tradition over common sense.

"If you'll excuse me sir I'm going to seek an audience with the Archgates before things begin to wind up."
Morgan stands, offers Bane a nod, and moves to stand near the Archgates. He stands close enough that it's obvious he wishes to speak with them, but far enough away that he didn't seem to be demanding their immediate attention.
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  #53  
Old Mar 1st, 2013, 07:39 AM
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Maul and Ajikis nod politely, though the Dragon seems a bit put out by the dismissal. He is soon grinning again as the two of them settle into their own seats with the Amber Dragon chatting to the Kastish representative next to him while Maul looks around the room. To most he would appear bored, but those who knew him would know he was taking in who was here and going through what he knew of them.

Bane listens patiently to Morgan's explanation before responding. "I see. Perhaps we can come to some sort of agreement. I see no need for us to keep the swords after our deaths for example and in truth Sinbreaker would be more use to a moral. Not that it is not useful to me, but it would be more useful to others. Witherbane though...hmmm...I will have to think carefully on how to approach the issue but I doubt Min will give up that sword, not after she sent Ira howling with it, and in truth I would not see her give it up either. Your words are apreciated Morgan. If you've any suggestions on how and who to approach the matter then I will listen."

When Morgan excuses himself Bane waves him away dismissively, tipping the hat back further onto his face and leaning back further in his chair. The four Archgates have separated by now, with the twins, Shara and Raeth, speaking with the Nihleese Ambassador, Alainn with the Pharean representative (with Nualae mysteriously absent) and Selene mingling.

Before he can make a decision more people enter, including Mirik Orn, Lady Phyre Dragonblaze (with Syltar and Schakri) and Lord Anhil Sol. The latter gives a slight nod to Morgan before moving swiftly to his own seat while the former two begin to mingle before the meeting officially starts.

~MTWC
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 07:59 PM
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Morgan frowns as he sees that the Archgates have split up. Ah well, too slow. Perhaps it would be better to speak to them separately. Deciding on Shara and Raeth first Morgan moves to await their pleasure, returning Anhil's nod with a neutral inclination of his own. Anhil, make that Seneca, was making it difficult to outright dislike him, but Morgan couldn't help but think that the ancient vampire's interest in him had quite a lot to do with his position as one of Vulcar's trusted advisers. Or maybe he was merely being overly suspicious... Damn.

Morgan sets the thought aside for later, gives Mirik Orn a friendly wave, and then responds to Bane while he awaits the twin's pleasure. ”I'm honestly only somewhat aware of the abilities of the swords, and I'm not sure if they are known fully to you, but she sent Ira howling with it because Witherbane's rotting curse is believed to have the capability to kill even gods. If he did not find help in time it is possible Ira is now dead. If so congratulations are in order. The more powerful the creature wounded the more difficult it is to remove the rotting curse. Obviously it feeds of the strength of the victim. If you were somehow able to strike Asharte herself with Witherbane it is possible none would be strong enough to heal her in time.”

Silence reigns for a long moment as Morgan considers. ”Suggesting a compromise? We'll make a politician out of you yet soldier. I think they're in better hands with you two than anyone else, so long as Min treats hers with proper caution and doesn't accidentally kill someone with a little nick. Honestly I don't know what you should do. It's probably safest to find someone who's actually an expert on Shalian politics, but not actually Shalian, and discuss the matter with them. Didina might be able to help. Like I said, keep it quiet for the moment, you can always claim ignorance later if someone finds out.”

Now for Xander who would he need? Xu'Deln, Jarl, and Kala for sure. The ghost talker, the wielder of the container, and the healer for sure. And himself in the off chance his visions and Tirileer's heart might help. Would it benefit to have more of the swords present? Morgan doesn't know if there's supposed to be any sort of magical link between the swords, but it probably wouldn't hurt. Min, Bane, and Wiat then.
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Old Mar 6th, 2013, 02:20 PM
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It was Raeth who noticed Morgan first, excusing himself from the conversation with the Nihleese ambassador and approaching the mage. He was a surprisingly short man, standing almost a foot shorter than Morgan and a good few inches shorter than his twin sister, but part of that was likely because his predecessor had been so tall and long lived. People just expected the Archgate of Koeluth to be tall now. He had a relaxed, almost easy manner that strongly reminded Morgan of Esiard. Some might mistake it for laziness but if he was anything like Eisard then it wouldn't matter than Raeth didn't have a weapon with him and it seemed unlikely in the extreme that an Archgate of Koeluth would be harmless without a weapon at hand.

"You're Morgan? The Seer?" Assuming Morgan confirms he would continue. "Vulcar said he had information about what happened yesterday to the Sharakans, amongst other things. Given how close I've heard you two are I expect you know too. I don't suppose you'd be willing to share so I can leave sooner rather than later?" It appeared his reputation for directness and disdain for titles was not exaggerated. It wasn't exactly rudeness, although some might take it that way. "The fool Shalians have rushed to the the large forest between Shali and SharakSharlan Woods in the wake of the Sharakan retreat, stretching themselves and leaving them vulnerable to raids, especially from the forest itself."

~MTWC
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Old Mar 6th, 2013, 03:11 PM
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Morgan frowns. "Damn. I was hoping we'd have a little more time before the Shalians started to get adventurous." The lanky mage drums his fingers against his abdomen as he weighs the relative merits of the Archgate leaving. I'd hate to see all that work go to waste because of Shalian temper, and it would probably be good to have someone out there who can trip Deimos up if he decides to get adventurous while so many of the Archgates are here. On the other hand the discussions here will be of great long term importance for everyone. "Do you have someone here who can speak and make decisions on behalf of Koehluth, yourself, and your church? Also do you know which of the remaining Archgates are planning on attending today?"
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Old Mar 6th, 2013, 07:04 PM
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Raeth raises an eyebrow. "Decisions on behalf of Koeluth? Is Vulcar wanting to create some kind of coalition against the Sharakans?" His expression darkens. "Fighting the Sharakans would only continue the cycle of death. I made it clear to the Shalians that I would help defend them. I will not help them attack Sharak in kind and may even take up arms against them if they chose to. Attack Sharak and it is the people who will suffer, not Kaeyin, Deimos or the other Fiends."

Assuming Morgan cleared that up Raeth would rub his chin thoughtfully. "Hmmm. If its just about keeping me informed then one of the other Archgates can fill me in. And Theofan. If I leave early he will want to leave early too, and for the same reasons. The only reason he's not here yet is that he can travel quicker than I and he's busy making the area in and around the Sharlan Woods as ugly as possible to dissuade the Shalians from moving further still and to make the Sharakans think twice before coming back for now."

"As for the other Archgates. I know that all but Jester and Kerberos intend to at least show their faces and who ever knows what those two intend to do? Lyanis Naesti, Archgate of Hiahel and one of the last three 'living' Elves (along with Tiaan and Lalian Shedeth)Lyanis told Shara that she intended to meet up with someone before heading here. The others are all here. Except for Nykal of course, but I doubt he'll show up for obvious reasons."

~MTWC
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Old Mar 6th, 2013, 08:50 PM
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If the Archgate expected his displeasure to cow the mage he's likely to be disappointed. Morgan rolls his eyes, his voice drier that the Arian desert. "Yes, because continuing the generational cycle of revenge for the wounds of the last cycle and creating wounds for the next to avenge has worked out so well for everyone in the past." Morgan sighs. "It's stupid and makes no sense. Sadly sense doesn't have a lot to do with that sort of thing, does it? No, as you say it would only heighten the bitterness and tie the Sharakans closer to the fiends. And that's the exact opposite of what I'm aiming for. Besides Kaeyin is too dead to be punished. Or hadn't you heard? It won't be easy, and it will probably take a very long time, but realistically the only palatable long term solution to get them to bury the hatchet. As it happens I had this conversation with Aldamil not too long ago."

"Shalians aren't good with subtlety. Instead of futzing around with the forest you should simply tell them that if they don't withdraw to their lines they'll be fighting you as well as the Sharakans. Toss one or two of them through a tree and they'll get the picture."
Morgan frowns. "How high up does this go? Are they acting on the Regent's orders? One of the other generals or lords? Or are they acting independently? If you wait around for a bit we might be able to get some official orders from Vice for you to take with you." As Esiard had once told him, "if you have an important point to make, don't be subtle. Pound it home as hard and unequivocally as you can."
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Old Mar 6th, 2013, 10:37 PM
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The news of Kaeyin's death only earns a raised eyebrow from Raeth but it gets his sister's attention as she extracts herself from her current conversation. "I had heard rumours that he was among the dead, and one or both of the Princes and even possibly the Princess." Raeth gives a shrug. "But words are wind, especially where Sharak and Fiends are concerned."

Shara has managed to join them by this time. She was slightly taller than her brother though still much shorter than Morgan and had longer hair, however she held herself in the same way that Raeth did, which was hardly surprising since the two had both started out as soldier. And still were in a manner of speaking, just in a different scale of war to everyone else. "Are the rumours about the missing children true too?" Morgan had heard nothing about missing children. If he asked about it then she would explain. "The rumours we heard were that most of the Royal Family (exactly who varies on who's telling the story) were killed - by Fiends, Shalians or some other faction - except for the children who simply vanished for one reason or another."

Raeth doesn't seem as upset by the missing children, or perhaps he's just better at hiding it. "Assuming Vulcar or one of his allies is behind this it's probably for the best." Shara gives him an odd look before Raeth explains. "Either you kill the children - which will destroy any possibility of support - or you take them into custody to ensure they aren't used as puppets or pawns by the Fiends. Not ideal but war rarely is." He looks to Morgan. "So was this attack Vulcar's doing?" Nice and direct again, and just in time for the arrival of Aldamil, Emlen, Esiard and the two Elernans. The former immediately grabbed attention from around the room. Obviously Raeth and Shara weren't the only ones who had heard the rumours and judging by the cold mask Aldamil was wearing she had heard them too.
OOCGiven how the conversation went, he wouldn't have gotten to the bit about throwing Shalians through trees. Did you really expect to drop 'Kaeyin is dead' without a reaction ?

~MTWC
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Last edited by Makenshi; Mar 6th, 2013 at 10:42 PM.
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  #60  
Old Mar 7th, 2013, 01:52 AM
SpatulaOdoom SpatulaOdoom is offline
Pretty cool Wyrm
 
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Something about Raeth's words sets Morgan's teeth on edge. ”I see options beyond death and imprisonment.” He grits out, voice a little louder than he'd intended. Moderating his tone, and giving the archgate the benefit of the doubt that his words were simply poorly chosen, Morgan continues. ”For my part I suggest giving the children of Kayin Sakean a chance to do the right thing, or at least do something worthy of it before you sentence them to death or imprisonment. Protect and aid them as they need and where you can, correct or punish when necessary, and otherwise leaving them to live their lives as they see fit so long as they bring no harm to others, as one hopes you'd treat every other human being out there.
Yes I freely admit that they are in a difficult position, and may already have been corrupted or coerced by the fiends. That just means they'll need more support than most, fortunately they're also in a position to do a lot of good for Sharak, being leaders, so I'd say it's time well spent.
Then again that's just my opinion.

As to your question the short answer is a qualified no. The long answer is on the agenda. A side note, Princess Aldamil Sakean is here as a guest and I would advise against any attempts to kidnap or execute her.”


Morgan turns his attention to Archgate Shara. In lieu of knowing exactly what would be appropriate offers a hand-shake. ”Archgate Shara, I'm Morgan Wainraith. A pleasure to make your acquaintance. In truth it was mostly you I wanted to speak to. Unfortunately it is a matter of some delicacy that I can't talk about in public, so I was hoping I could schedule a brief get together at your convenience at some later date. I know you're a busy person at the best of times, but I assure you it will be of interest to you.

Regarding the children of the former king of Sharak, the eldest son has been reported dead. I don't know the location or status of the youngest, but what I heard is that he is simply missing. I fear he's been taken by the fiends, but hope otherwise. As for Princess Aldamil, well...”
She's right over there of course.
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Last edited by SpatulaOdoom; Jul 23rd, 2013 at 01:24 PM.
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