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    The Saltpans

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    The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:08 am

    The wind is sharp and the sea breaks in harsh waves on the rocky shore. The sky is a dreary grey and the air is heavy with the smell of upcoming rain. Villagers hustle and bustle about; sailors unload their cargos for trade.
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    Cadmon Storm

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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:16 am

    Cadmon Storm hefts the shield with a slow smile. He rubs his elbow against one of the silver lightning bolts standing out from the lacquered white face, framing the stone-gray tower. He looks up at the smith and flips him a golden dragon.

    "With this and the sword you've outdone yourself, friend. You have my thanks."

    The smith salutes with his hammer and resumes working on another project. Cadmon turns and walks over to the garron waiting patiently by the drinking trough. It looks at him curiously, amber mane and dusky coat rustled by the salty breeze. The young man runs a hand through his own wavy mane of auburn hair and pats the garron's neck.

    "It will be gentle rain, I think, but a steady one. We best be on our way before it reaches us."

    He swings up into the saddle, checking the bulging bags the garron bears and adjusting the one on his back as it rested against his cloak. Boiled leather is visible beneath it, as is the spun steel and dark leather of the Braavosi hilt at his side. The Andals longsword, fresh from the smith's forge, hangs in a scabbard by the horn of the saddle where it can easily be drawn by the rider. Swinging the shield over the backpack, Cadmon takes up the reigns.

    "Let's go, Zephyr. We have a bit of road to eat up while the light's still with us."
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    The Lily Knight

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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  The Lily Knight on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:23 am

    Looking out over the village, I spot a man with a sigil I do not recognize. I ride out to him on my black palfrey, after making sure my visor is firmly down.

    That is fine steel there. Must have cost you much coin.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:28 am

    He looks over his shoulder, down at his shield and back at the armored figure who posed the statement. He smiles a little.

    "It did, but what price quality steal? You can't spend coin when you're dead, while coin well-spent can save your life. But I'd say you know, judging by the plate you wear."
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    The Lily Knight

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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  The Lily Knight on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:33 am

    I earned this plate with my own blood and sweat, not some chunk of metal. What is your name, good ser?

    I turn my horse to face his, clearly suspicious of his sigil and where his funding comes from.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:37 am

    His smile settles into a bit of a smirk. This is a tone he's heard before.

    "My name is Cadmon Storm. And the 'chunks of metal' that purchased me Zephyr here and everything on him came from sweat, blood, the salt of the sea and long months of meals consisting only fresh water and crusts of bread. I earned my way to many places, many lessons, through work and persistence."

    He glances at the rainclouds then back at the inscrutable visor glaring at him.

    "I've given you my name. May I have the pleasure of yours?"
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    The Lily Knight

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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  The Lily Knight on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:40 am

    I am simply known to most as The Lily Knight. You can call me Ser.

    I notice him glancing at the stormclounds.

    Are you anxious about the rain, or looking for an excuse to flee from here?
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:45 am

    "Anxious is a good word. Excited, more accurate. Rain cleanses the land, feeds the crops, returns water to the parched. It's always a pleasure to see the nature of things at work."

    Zephyr turns his head back towards the trough. Cadmon has to tug the reins gently, keeping the garron's attention on the road out of the Saltpans.

    "Anyway, it wasn't my intention to linger in the Saltpans much longer. Surely a knight with their own title and heraldry, such that all who know such markers on sight forsake the basic usage of a common name, has better things to do than treat with bastards. Normally such knights are out winning honor or glory. Like the Mountain, for example. I've heard of the Mountain, after all, but not the Lily Knight. Not yet, at least. Are your songs yet unwritten?"
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    The Lily Knight

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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  The Lily Knight on Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:51 am

    Men who need songs sung about them are not true knights.

    I wince as he says about bastards and titles.

    Honor is for pride-filled blood sacks who do not belong out in the realm defending the weak and innocent. Truth I pat my longsword. and justice are the only weapons a knight should wield.

    Best be on your way bastard. Your kind do not belong here.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:01 am

    Cadmon chuckles, giving Zephyr another tug.

    "In truth, your longsword will serve you well on the field. But not all battles are fought there. Remember that, and remember that bastards do not belong anywhere - we must make our own way, even through places we are unwelcome. May your weapons protect you, and your gods welcome you if they do not."

    He taps two gloved fingers to his forehead in a salute, turning the garron towards the outskirts of the Saltpans and the Riverlands beyond. Puffed-up knights with laughable inscrutability were not as interesting as what waited for him in the Seven Kingdoms.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  The Lily Knight on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:03 am

    I let him leave and ride on my own through the woods toward Riverrun. I feel the pattering of raindrops on my armor and ride on. Perhaps I should find a smith to help it fit better.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:14 am

    The rain begins, a slow, steady, shower that will most likely last through the night. The wood outside the village is dark and dank, a dreary and lonely place. Cadmon, after riding for several hours, a man walks into Zephyr's path.

    Oi, what are ye doin in our wood?
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:33 am

    A gentle tug brings Zephyr to a halt. Cadmon makes a mental note to send a raven to the Saltpans stablemaster to thank them for training the garron so well.

    "Just passing through on my way to Riverrun. I wasn't aware these woods had been claimed. To whom do the birds and stags pay their homage?"
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:36 am

    A second man, skinnier than the first, appears to Cad's right.

    Well, stags n' dragons pay ho.. homo..... pay us!

    His grin is full of broken, unclean teeth and bits of old meals. Cad, you hear at least one other person behind you.

    So, yer horse is rather pretty... you should get off 'er. *draws a rusted short dagger* Now.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:45 am

    Cad continues to smile. His gloved hands remain on the reins of the garron, seemingly nowhere near the hilt of his longsword or Braavosi blade. The shield on his back is positioned to slide down his left arm with a shrug of his shoulder. He's smiling because he's thinking of the words of his teacher. He will be swift as a mongoose, sure as the tide.

    "It's a he, actually. And if the stags and even mighty dragons pay you, what need have you for the coin of a bastard like me? Surely you have meat and treasure galore from such magnificent creatures, who bend their knees to men of such... ferocity."

    As he speaks, his feet nudge Zephyr back a pace, within kicking distance of the man or men behind him.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:49 am

    The fatter, disfigured man in front of you snorts with derision.

    No, ya stupid lout, we want your gold and silver. That is what pays us! Hand it over, or it'll be your last today. And hand over those blades too. They'll fetch a pretty pile o'coin.

    Skinny and Ugly (since they haven't given you names yet) draw their pathetic swords, Skinny holding the deteriorated dagger in his off hand, and they lunge to attack you.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:53 am

    Three things happen in quick succession.

    First, Cadmon stops smiling.

    Second, he kicks the flanks of Zephyr in a certain way. The garron cries out fiercely and lashes out with his hind legs. Woe betide anyone foolish enough to be close to the horse's hindquarters when this happens.

    Third, Cadmon's left arm flashes out to the side as his right crosses his lap. The shield bearing his heraldry is on his forearm as the garron's kick strikes out, and his Andals longsword is bare when the hooves come back down. Both shield and sword parry incoming blows, the sword flashing in a quick riposte, or at least quick as Cadmon can manage. The weight of the blade is good for mounted slashes, not quite as adept at the rapid movements of the Water Dance.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 1:57 am

    Skinny and Ugly back away from you after that one movement.

    S..s...s.sorry Ser. *Both men have wet their breeches.* We'll just be going now...

    They back away slowly from you, and you hear them talking to one another once they are in the wood and out of the reach of your sword.

    [Skinny] Thought he'd be as easy as that stupid tin can flower... Do you think it's dead yet?

    [Ugly] Probably. Let's go steel it's armor!

    They run off to the north and east.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:04 am

    The horse looks back at Cadmon in a way that makes it seem like it was looking forward to showing off more. Cadmon sheathes the longsword and pats the garron's neck.

    "You did fine, Zephyr. Just fine."

    Blue eyes narrow at the wood as the bandits rustle off. Did they back off just because of his swordsmanship? They wouldn't have if they were desperate. They must have another score, somewhere. Cadmon swings off of the garron, tying the reins to a sturdy branch with a quick sailor's knot. He tugs it to make sure it's secure, slinging the shield on the saddle so that it hangs against the tree. On foot, their other score or their hideout couldn't be far.

    "I'll just be a moment. Graze."

    With a final pat on the garron's neck, he's after them, picking his way through the underbrush quiet as a mouse, deft as a cat.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:06 am

    After following them for a few minutes, you hear a woman scream further up ahead in the direction you are headed.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:10 am

    The immediate reaction is to draw both his blades: the Braavosi blade in his right hand, a dagger of Valyrian steel in his left. He follows the source of the scream as directly as an arrow.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  The Lily Knight on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:17 am

    I can't stop the blood flowing from the gash in my stomach.

    Give me back my armor you cowards!

    As one of them drives a finger into my stomach wound I scream bloody murder.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:23 am

    The second scream just lends more swiftness to the bastard's steps. He comes into the clearing, laying the flat of his Braavosi blade on the shoulder of the nearest bandit. The Valyrian steel in his left hand is slick with rain that flows freely from the dagger as he interrupts their 'fun'.

    "You heard the lady. Return her armor."
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Admin on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:28 am

    [Ugly] Wat? A wench like 'er don't need no armor! O'ly thin' she's good fer is whelping and whoring.

    He goes to touch her again, this time toward her pert chest through her blue travel-stained tunic.
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    Re: The Saltpans

    Post  Cadmon Storm on Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:30 am

    Cadmon grimaces. The blade flashes, smacking the man's arm, then resting again on the nape of his neck. He applies the tiniest bit of pressure.

    "Do that again and I'll take your hand. Turn on me and I take your life. Give her what's hers and walk away, and I'll just take your stench."

    His nose wrinkles.

    "Which, considering how your friends pissed themselves, is considerable."

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