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Thread: Ragar's Tale

  1. #1
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    Ragar's Tale

    (ooc) First, I would like to say that any comment that is not part of this tale start with "(ooc)". "ooc" stands for out-of-context which means it's about the story but not part of the story. Please start all paragraphs that are not part of the story with this.

    Ragar hurried down the street. He must delivered the brooch to Lady Esmeralda before sunset. Once done, he could hide until morning, but he had to be off the streets for the night.

    Ragar was a goblin. His kind were only allowed in the town at night, to clean up after folk. Even then they were carefully watched by the priest-guards. But the town of Baronsburg had decided to try something new. They decided that some well-mannered goblins could be employed as household servants. Ragar was one such.

    Ragar was employed by Master Endick, a merchant of some means. It was his son, Master Phillip who charged Ragar with returning the brooch. It seemed that Lady Esmeralda had left it behind at tea, and since it was the only thing that held up her bodice, its misplacement could sully her reputation. So it had to be returned before Anyone Found Out.

    As Ragar panted his way to the top of Merchant's Hill, that invisible line that separated the New Wealth from the Old, he looked to his right and saw the sun touch the sea beyond the harbour. I'm not going to make it, he thought. The Elders are going to be really pissed.
    Last edited by goldhawk; April 12th, 2008 at 06:15 PM. Reason: typos

  2. #2
    Aspiring Writer XD Callamai's Avatar
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    ohh.. so lonely!! are those cricket's I hear:D okay I post!!

    At that precise moment a tall, heavily cloaked figure darted out from a side-alley, colliding head on into Ragar, and sent the young goblin crashing to the cobbled stone path, the wind knocked clean out of him.

    The mysterious figure before him panted heavily, glancing furtively into the alley from whence he sprung, before calmly leaning over to help the small goblin to his feet. Ragar glared into the figure's cavernous hood, as if his small beady eyes could pierce it's veil of darkness. He knocked the shady characters gloved hand away stubbornly, and pulled himself to his feet, dusting himself off.

    "I tend not to seek the aid of those who are heavily veiled," Ragar growled. "Invites attention of the worst kind, namely the noose. How am I to know you are not a felon? or worse a Priest-Guard in disguise, trying to catch me out aiding and abetting? Well, I have news for you good sir, I am Ragar of the house Kaiton and I, am an upstanding citizen. Now, if-"

    The sound of laughter peeled out through the gathering gloom, the cloaked figure's shoulders heaved with good humour. Ragar was taken aback at this sudden outburst, folding his arms over his chest he stuck up his nose, clearly hurt. "My, how you speak, young Ragar of the house, Kaiton," murmured the hooded figure. "Forgive me, but I have not laughed so, in such a very long time."
    "Humph."
    "Could I possibly trouble you for a hot meal and a warm bed," rasped the cloaked figure. "I have traveled far with naught but the clothes on my back and the fires of determination burning within me."

    "As I said, I do not associate with strangely hooded figures," growled the goblin, opening one eye and glaring curiously up at the stranger before him.

    Just as Ragar readied to take his leave, the cloaked stranger lifted a gloved hand. As the hood fell away from the figure's face, the goblin stepped back, his jaw dropped...
    Last edited by Callamai; April 11th, 2008 at 07:53 AM.

  3. #3
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    It was the Princess Effilleria!

    Her blond hair was drawn back into a pigtail. Her delicate, pointed ears gave truth to her ancestry of Albin blood. Her mouth was a small, delicate rosebud above her pointed chin. Her nose was cute, slightly upturned; but it was her eyes; those big, blue eyes that looked into the soul of a person, and asked them to look deeper.

    Ragar stopped his hand before it actually touched her face. She looked at his hand, then looked at him. Her mouth drew into a quirky smile that seemed to say, Why did you stop? and at the same time, How Dare You?

    Just then a large figure bursted out from the side alley. It launched itself at them. The Princess grabbed a device on her belt that Ragar thought was decoration, whirled it once around her head, and threw it at her assailant. It bounced once off the street and neatly wrapped itself around the assailant's legs. It fell to the ground with a crash. The Princess was atop it in a blink with a long, white knife drawn from somewhere on her body. She stabbed quickly and withdrew. A small fountain of blood spurted from the wound. She wiped the blood from her blade on the clothes of her assailant and walked back toward Ragar. He could see that there was no blood on her.

    As she walked back toward him, he noticed how the pinks and oranges of the setting sun enhanced her beauty.

    The setting sun! he thought as his head whipped back to the sunset. The sun had only half a disc to go. How am I ever going to deliver this brooch on time?

    He felt an arm across his shoulders. The Princess said, "Isn't it beautiful? Makes you're glad you're alive, no?"

    "Yes, Princess," said Ragar as his heart sank into his boots. "It does."

    (ooc) A piece of advice I received was: Make your protagonist miserable. To apply it in this case: if you can't figure out what to do next, make your protagonist's life harder. Make them squirm. I hoped I did that.

  4. #4
    Aspiring Writer XD Callamai's Avatar
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    Post Yes! A woman, that's exactly what I was thinking! We are on the same wavelength, yes?

    Princess Effilleria glanced down at the goblin with those warm blue eyes, rays of light dancing radiantly across her porcelain skin, and sensed the note of urgency plaguing him.

    "What troubles you so, young Ragar?" she said, gazing curiously into his beady black eyes.

    "I would not burden you with my petty problems, Princess," he said pulling away, and bowing rather clumsily. Effilleria frowned slightly as she placed her gloved fingers under the goblin's chin and gently lifted his face so that their eyes met. Ragar shifted uncomfortably, trying desperately to look away from her, but to no avail. The Princess's frown deepened.

    "What weighs so heavily on your mind, Ragar of the house, Kaiton?" she said, her voice strong. Ragar felt a small pressure on his mind, and after a slight hesitation he told her of the brooch he must return to the Lady Esmeralda. Effilleria removed her fingers from the goblin's chin and smiled brightly. Ragar averted his eyes, believing himself unworthy to look upon her divine beauty. "See? That was not so bad as you thought, no?"

    "Forgive me, Prince-"

    "Ria. Call me, Ria," she said, turning his face toward her. "What is there to be forgiven for, young Ragar? Nothing. So, if you don't mind we shall refrain from the formalities, is this understood?"

    "Yes, Prince- Ria," Ragar replied, a little uncertainly.

    "Also I do believe we can come to a negotiation."

    "How so?" inquired the goblin awkwardly, his beady eyes narrowed in curiosity.

    "Well, were I to help you with your errand, you would naturally owe me a favour, no? And it just so happens I need a place to stay. So as it would seem this meeting was not one of chance, as it would appear." Ragar thought back, his mind now reeling. Questions clouded his mind making it hard to think clearly.

    "You are the Princess Effilleria, I would think it simple for one such as yourself to find a place to rest within a fancy inn, perhaps. Who was that man chasing you? Why did you kill him? Why did you leave your home? Why have you traveled so far without a guard? What are you determined to do?" the young goblin's queries tumbled from his mouth in a rush of confusion.

    "I do not wish to draw attention to myself by resting at a public inn," she whispered, her face a picture of sorrow and torment. It broke Ragar's heart to see this young woman in such pain. "I will not tell you anything else, for fear of your safety."

    "A compromise, then?" the goblin said, his curiosity getting the better of him. "I know of a place where you can rest, without fear of being discovered. I will tell you, IF you agree to answer ALL of my questions. Truthfully." He knew he was going to get a flogging for being late, but his curious nature dominated his duty to serve.

    "I will answer SOME of your questions and help you on your errand, for your information," Ria answered wearily after a long pause. Ragar smiled and held out his hand.

    "Deal," they said in unison, shaking hands. When they broke away from each other, Ria pulled off her right glove. She closed her eyes, a strange glow enveloping her body.

    "What's going on? Princess, are you alright?" Ragar gasped, panic rising. Ria grabbed his hand with long, delicate finger's. The wind began to dance around them, getting stronger and louder with each passing moment. The young goblin tried to wriggle free of Ria's grasp, but despite her otherwise fragile appearance, her grip stayed true. Opening her eyes she gazed intently at Ragar.

    "Hold tight, young Ragar," she shouted over the roaring winds. "You must trust me, else this will not work." The young goblin's heart pounded wildly against his chest, feeling the full weight of his regret, he gazed up into Ria's eyes, the fear evident upon his face. Staring into those orbs of deepest blue, he felt his panic subside, to be replaced with clear and unexplained trust.

    A moment later they were standing before the Lady Esmeralda's abode.

    ooc: Sorry for the length, I had one of those moments where everything was clear. Very Rare. Also I do ever so hate making character's suffer... I don't think I did, did I? I hope it's alright.
    Last edited by Callamai; April 13th, 2008 at 01:57 AM.

  5. #5
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Callamai View Post
    ooc: Sorry for the length, I had one of those moments where everything was clear. Very Rare. Also I do ever so hate making character's suffer... I don't think I did, did I? I hope it's alright.
    (ooc) Length means nothing. But about making characters suffer...that is the heart of a story. No story is heart-felt unless it twists its reader heart; and that means full wrung out with nothing left to drip. Yes, that means the hero/heroine must wear his/her heart on his/her sleeve.

  6. #6
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Callamai View Post
    "Hold tight, young Ragar," she shouted over the roaring winds. "You must trust me, else this will not work." The young goblin's heart pounded wildly against his chest, feeling the full weight of his regret, he gazed up into Ria's eyes, the fear evident upon his face. Staring into those orbs of deepest blue, he felt his panic subside, to be replaced with clear and unexplained trust.

    A moment later they were standing before the Lady Esmeralda's abode.
    (ooc) That's sounds too much like deus ex machina.

    (ooc) Rule #1 of writing: only the protagonist can solve the problems of the protagonist.

    (ooc) Corollary: Outside help may aid, but not solve.

    (ooc) OK, Ragar got here without pounding his feet into bloody pulps.

    (ooc) And I have no idea where to go next.

  7. #7
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    Ragar looked around. They were standing outside the front door of the
    Holden estate.

    This will never do, thought Ragar. "Please follow me, Princess."
    Ragar lead them around the manor to the stables. "Please wait here,
    Princess. It would not be wise for you to be seen."

    The Princess gave a quick nod.

    "I shall be back as quick as I can," said Ragar.

    Ragar scurried to the servants' door.

    (ooc) BTW, if you think the story is progressing, you're wrong. This is what I call, "Filling In The Details." Or "Stalling For Time." That means, ...until a better idea comes along.
    Last edited by goldhawk; April 26th, 2008 at 06:11 PM. Reason: Removed redundant words.

  8. #8
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    Ragar knocked on the door. A human answered it. "How may I help
    you?" it said. Ragar got the feeling that there would be no help
    here.

    "I k...came to return this brooch." Ragar presented it for inspection.

    The human looked down at him with disdain. Suddenly, his eyes flick
    over his head to the courtyard and grew large. "Yes, young Master,"
    the human said. "Yes, I THINK WE CAN ACCOMMODATE YOU," he said in a
    loud voice. "YOU SHALL BE TREATED AS THE KING HIMSELF."

    Ragar whipped his head over his shoulder and looked back at the
    courtyard. He could see nothing.

    "YOU SHALL DELIVER YOUR BROOCH...AND WHOM TO IT SHALL BE DELIVER TOO?"
    he asked.

    "The Lady Esmeralda," Ragar said in a small voice.

    "THE BROOCH SHALL BE RETURN TO THE LADY ESMERALDA." The human was
    obviously talking over Ragar's head. "IMMEDIATELY," it added.

    The human grabbed Ragar and dragged him into the house. "I don't know
    what you're up to, goblin, but be sure, if you betray me, you'll won't
    see the dawn," the human whispered into his ear. Ragar had never been
    in a house like this and he had a dim impression of the halls and
    rooms he was dragged through. The human flung Ragar into a chair.

    "Sit here. Don't steal anything. I know everything in this room down
    to the last piece of dust. I clean it everyday. So if something is
    missing, I'll know it was you," the human glared at him.

    Ragar settled himself into the chair and tried not to shake.

    "Good," said the human. "Now stay that way." He left the room.

    Ragar looked around the room. He have never seen so much wealth
    before. The walls were covered in dark green with gold tracings.
    They seemed to have a regular pattern. And the walls looked
    like they were covered with paper! As though their colours where only
    temporary. Now, Ragar, being a goblin, imagined what it was like to
    be filthy, dirty rich; but neither he nor his old friends, could
    imagined being so rich to replace the wall coverings. Even once. Even
    in the smallest of rooms.
    Last edited by goldhawk; May 9th, 2008 at 05:33 PM. Reason: typos

  9. #9
    aurea plectro goldhawk's Avatar
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    THIS ENTIRE POST IS OOC, Out-Of-Character.

    I decided to post some background material for those of you who may consider posting. I'm thinking because this world is different that what is expected, knowing this may provide some insights.

    Human-Goblin History

    Humans and goblins started living together when the humans settled
    down and formed farming communities. With towns and villages came
    garbage dumps. Goblins, being scavengers, settled into the dumps.

    In time, the goblins grew bold and scavenged in the towns and villages
    but only at night. This was the time when humans slept and the
    goblins were less likely to encounter anyone. This lead to an
    informal agreement that the goblins would haul away the humans' trash
    in exchange for whatever use they could make of it. The problem was
    that the goblins were very enthusiastic about it, carrying off
    anything that was not nailed down. The solution came from the
    priests.

    With goblins around, the priests guarded their cemeteries at night to
    prevent the goblins from digging up the recently buried (and sometimes
    the not so recent). With some incentive, that is, donations to the
    temple, they expanded their patrols to include the whole town. This
    was considered ordain protocol since the priests, because of their
    holy investment, were immune to any contamination from the goblins.
    But it also lead to the goblins to be viewed as untouchable; they had
    a stigma that placed them lower than animals.

    Many towns and cities reflect this attitude in their layout. The
    smithies are downwind of the town (so the sparks from their fires
    won't catch the town ablaze), with the stockyards, slaughterhouses,
    and tanneries downwind from them (because they stink), and the dump or
    goblintown downwind from that.

    The Brass Lanterns

    The Brass Lanterns, or simply Lanterns, are the priest-guards that
    patrol the towns.

    A long time ago the goblins would gang up and attack anyone out on the
    streets at night (today, we call this swarming). But they quickly
    learnt that certain people should not be attacked. This is because
    they were wealthy and could afford the donations to the temples until
    the attackers were caught. The goblins learnt to distinguish the poor
    from the wealthy since the poor could only afford torches to light
    their way whereas the wealthy carried lanterns, usually made of brass.
    This was quickly picked up by the priests who not only carried brass
    lanterns but wore a stylized-lantern badge to symbolize their
    authority. So they were called Brass Lanterns.

    The Brass Lanterns became into what we would call police.

    The organization of the Brass Lanterns is:

    The local Temple (today we would call it a precinct) is the
    responsibility of the Headpriest. It is his responsibility that there
    are enough Lanterns out and patrolling the neighbourhood. It is also
    his responsibility to punish anyone caught breaking the law.

    If a town has more than one Temple, it has a Bishop to oversee their
    activities. The Bishop works with the Mayor and the Councillors to
    ensure the smooth running of the town.

    The Archbishop is in charge of the Lanterns in a kingdom. He is
    usually elected from the Bishops by the Bishops to serve in the King's
    Court. His main job is to see that all the Bishops are informed of
    and obey the King's Writ. He receives feedback from the Bishops as
    how effective they are and how to change the Writ for the better.
    Since the Lanterns are used as a militia in case the country is
    attacked, he is responsible to see that they are capable. The
    Archbishop is the only King's Advisor that is not appointed by the
    King.

    A Shiney is a rookie Lantern. Like a real brass lantern, he hasn't
    been around enough to loose his shine.

    Lanterns are no more or no less religious than the police of our
    world. Some are fervent in their beliefs; some don't care; most are
    somewhere in between.

    Almost all Lanterns are male. Sexual equality hasn't reached this
    part of the world (yet). In some small, remote villages, there are
    female Lanterns but they are very rare.

  10. #10
    Haunted Specter MonkFish's Avatar
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    Ragar was made to wait for some time. The delay increased his unease. He began to worry that Ria might not wait on him. A part of him hoped that she wouldn't, for the Princess was surely trouble. The ... whatever it was, that she had killed, spoke loudly of this, as did her skill with the mini-bolos and blade.

    "A-hem," a throat clearing itself drew him from his reverie. He looked over and saw the same human who had admitted him standing just inside the doorway to the chamber. "The Lady Esmeralda," he intoned, and bowed deeply at the waist just as a tall, dark and richly brocaded woman swept through. The Lady Esmeralda; beautiful, cunning, dangerous, if what was whispered about her were even half the truth.

    "Well, goblin?" She peered down her nose at him, arching an eyebrow. Ragar hastily removed his ratty cap and performed a hasty bow.

    "Your Ladyship," he croaked.

    "Arise," she sniffed dismissively. "I haven't much time and there is urgent news I have for your master. Here, take this," she held out a small scroll, sealed with dark, blood colored wax which bore a seal. Presumably hers, Ragar wasn't thinking clearly, this smelled like even more trouble, and he had forgotten completely the item his master had entrusted him to return to her. "I've sent word ahead," she continued, "you shan't have any trouble with the Lanterns." Ragar reached out a trembling hand and gingerly took the scroll from hers, "But that must be delivered immediately," she fixed him with a long, steady stare, "sealed, understand?"

    He didn't trust himself to speak, instead merely bobbed his head. Just then, a great crash resounded from somewhere in the upper reaches of the Manse...
    Last edited by MonkFish; March 7th, 2009 at 01:19 AM.

  11. #11
    The Princess. They come for the princess! Visions of the Princess' assailant filled his mind; he had to warn her. He bowed to the Lady as the humans spun toward the source of the noise.

    "What was that?" said Lady Esmerine, panic in her voice. Ragar slipped out in the confusion.

    He sprinted to the stables, letter in hand, praying that the Princess hadn't been caught yet. He rounded the corner and stopped, panting. She was gone. Nobody, nor any sign anybody had been there, was evident. Ragar swore.

    Why am I so worried? I don't care about the humans' Princess. As long as none of this is traceable to me...

    And yet, he did care. The Princess had somehow won his loyalty in the short time they'd been together and he found himself desperate to return her safely. But what could a single goblin do?

    He sighed and read the name on the envelope.

    Headpriest Leonard Amenor.
    To be opened upon receiving.


    Urgent, thought Ragar. Nobody bothered the Headpriest unless it was very important, too. Not even the rich folk.

    What is going on here? he wondered.

    Another almighty crash from the house. Ragar spun. A woman shrieked, but the sound was cut short. The goblin's heart raced. He turned, wide-eyed, intent on delivering the letter, and began running from the house as fast as possible. Serving the humans was a mistake, he thought. It always ends in trouble.

    He stopped for a rest; being a goblin, sprinting wasn't easy. Then he noticed that he was following fresh hoof-marks. Turning, Ragar saw that a horse was missing from the stables.

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