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These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends

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11 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:18 am

"You saw this," I ask weakly, having propped myself up by now to look at him anxiously, "The man, the little girl..?" I continue, "Marnin- What happened to them..?"

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12 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:23 am

"The people-," I start, swallowing roughly as I shake my head. "The people grabbed the man. I don't know where he went. And then they started hitting the-," but I can't finish the sentence. Instead I shake my head sharply. "The girl said something, though. Something weird. But I can't remember what exactly."

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13 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:25 am

"These violent delights have violent ends," I breathe the words, the vox's volume just barely audible. I shove off of him entirely as I pull the blanket around myself to settle near his feet. 

"Marn, I'm sorry."

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14 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:26 am

"What?" I ask, as much in response to her apology as to what she's said. "How did you- thats exactly what she said. How did you know that?"

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15 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:33 am

"Marnin, that was my dream." I say weakly, not entirely sure how I feel about having shared it as I stare down at the blanket's hem pinched between my fingers. 

"That's my gift, or- Was my gift... Between the Valerian and the nightmare... I never meant to do that to you, I'm sorry."

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16 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:38 am

"Wait," I frown starkly. "That was... your magic? You used your magic on me... in your sleep? And showed me your dream."

I frown for a long moment as I settle back into the arm of the couch. "So that was.. Bea? And your husband. What was his name?"

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17 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:45 am

I nod softly as I wring my hands anxiously, my headache creeping just behind my temple. 

"Nikolai," I say weakly, "And the little girl was Beatrice, yes," I nod, inhaling shakily, "How she looks now, though... I think."

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18 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:48 am

"Nikolai looked angry," I frown as I cock my head towards her. "Before the men took him. He was angry, and he wanted you to sign something?"

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19 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 12:51 am

I still as I look at him, my legs twisting from under me just enough so I can sit properly in the couch.

"Divorce papers," I answer, "He was going to take Bea and leave."

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20 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:01 am

"Why?" I ask, astounded as I recall the image of them sitting down to dinner. "You looked so happy..."

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21 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:03 am

"We were, for awhile... But-" I swallow, exhaling thickly as my legs begin to bounce anxiously. "He didn't like how I made my money...

"In Reach's End, there's a group sort of like your brother's boogeymen." I say weakly, my heart racing as I glance towards Marnin. "And I worked for their rivals."

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22 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:07 am

The strange smile that comes over me is all but comforting as I lean back against the arm of the couch, my hands dragging down my face tiredly as I laugh to myself. "Rivals," I say the word flatly, licking my lips. "Like the police?" My tone becomes higher, not quite hopeful or innocent, more... anticipating. It isn't the police. I know that. The fear in her heart tells me before she can even part her lips.

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23 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:12 am

"No," I response, the word more a squeak than anything else as I stare down at my bouncing knees. "Marnin, I didn't want you to find out this way-"

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24 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:16 am

"What did you do?" I cut her off, not wanting to hear any apologies. I just want information. Maybe it's not so bad. There are plenty of people who do things to get by that aren't so bad. Victims of circumstance. That's fine. I can deal with that. "What did you do, Lju? When you were a boogeyman? Who were the people that feared you? Why'd he wanna leave, really?"

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25 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:34 am

"I never hurt anybody!" I say sharply, my tone turning defensive as I twist to face him, "I don't know why he filed, Marn. He never gave me the papers, I found them in his office. He never got the chance."

Swallowing roughly, I wipe at my cheek absently. "Somehow, the other group found out who I was, and we started getting threats to the house. Dead animals, or weird letters. It wasn't long after that I found the papers, and by the end of the month-" I gesture towards my face defeatedly.

"They think I'm dead, and for their sake, I'm staying that way."

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26 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:40 am

"What did you do?" I ask with a stark frown. After what she's said, I want to drop it. I want to just leave it alone, I do. But I know I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I didn't find out a little more. Especially realizing that everything she's told me makes her exactly the kind of person Richard looks for: a proverbial deadman. I have to know what potential she could have. "You had to have some purpose in your guild. What was it?"

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27 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:44 am

I blink back the tears as I turn to face him, "I fixed witnesses." I say simply, "Made them forget, or made them remember something new. Didn't matter."

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28 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:48 am

"You-," I can feel all the hope I'd been holding onto deflate out of me, my heart sinking into the pit of my stomach as I rest my face in my hand. I know firsthand how hard it is to come forward as a witness, how hard it is to convince one to share their story... the thought of her thwarting all of that courage, perverting any justice they could have brought to the world...

"Get out," I say softly.

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29 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:49 am

I stiffen as the words hit me, like a slap to the face. 

"What?" I ask, knowing I'd heard wrong.

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30 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:53 am

"Leave," I say more firmly, my jaw clicking as I turn a teary eyed glare on her. "I need time to think," I say more evenly, though the hollowness in my chest still rings with a fury that threatens to blow up if she tries to argue. "And I don't want you here while I do because I might say something I regret."

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31 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 2:01 am

Inhaling sharply, I only nod as I rise from the couch, keeping the blanket tucked around my torso as I step awkwardly away from the sofa. 

"I'll just-" I start, looking around at a loss as I nod, "I'll get my things and go."

I don't hesitate as I head for the stairs, rubbing at my eyes as I focus on keeping my composure. It's tense as I get dressed hurriedly, shoving my belongings into the basket Lavellan had brought me the night before before coming back downstairs. I come through the foyer, this time, to avoid seeing Marnin as I get my moppy from the kitchen and linger for a moment near the sink. He hasn't moved from his spot on the couch, still sitting tensely with his sightless gaze boring a hole into the floor.

I want to explain myself, but I can't risk it. Not exposing my connection with his brother, with Lavellan. No, I need to leave while I'm ahead. So I do. Without a word, I leave.

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32 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 3:19 am

*Lavellan*

I'm still bone-achingly exhausted when I return to the comfort of my own home. It's just early enough that people are starting to trickle in to the shop below, a handful of whispers following me as I stop in and help myself to the stock of prime spell components that have been set aside behind the counter for me. It's always risky coming in through the front door like this, but any worries I might have had are erased when I go to the door at the back of the shop - a white, peeling, glass paneled door that feeds directly into a stairwell.

It's unremarkable except for the jagged, menacing symbols carved into the door jam and the bundle of herbs and voodoo-like sticks tied to the doorknob. Dangling from the center of a relatively normal looking dreamcatcher amidst that clutter is a single, tiny lavender geode; a dream drop. They're a rare commodity here in Skycrest, but I'm one of the few people in the city who would know what they are or have the connections and resources to obtain one. And it's really the only one I need.

The moment I pass through the door to go upstairs, the dream drop does it's job, a tiny little piece of it chipping away as it lets out a burst of its magic, and the shop's patrons forget having ever seen me. The only other time the dream drop gets any use is when someone tries to come up the stairs uninvited - another little piece of the geode dissolving away as their hand touches the doorknob, and they forget why they had come, instead remembering something more urgent to deter them from proceeding.

With that handy little bit of magic, the more deadly protections beyond the entryway seem rather redundant, and have gone neglected as a result. Even the discoloration worked into the door at the top of the stairs has worn away with the passing of time, the poison it had once housed having long since gone inert with disuse. Unless you count what's worn off from my own touch, that is.

Inside the rather sizable loft, however, is hardly without it's hazards. One would hope that if an intruder had managed to make it this far, they would know what sort of dangers lurk in every nook and cranny of my home - whether it's hiding in the wealth of herbs hanging from the ceiling in various stages of drying, or the thousands of little baubles and potions, books and brooms, wands and blades, cauldrons and burners... hell, even the furniture isn't always what it seems, and more than one of my 'guests' have taken their seat in one particular harmless looking chair - now buried under blankets and books - only to find their every innermost thought lain bare for my pleasure.

Still, even I occasionally bump into the wrong thing inside my own familiar walls - hence the chair being covered. It's for this reason that my bathroom is so far removed from the main part of the house - an entire, relatively empty bedroom between it and the deadly presence of my craft. The small room isn't without it's charm, though. Shelves line the walls from top to bottom, each covered in jars of essential oils and herbs (all harmless), and more plants and baubles hang from the rafters and populate every corner than you could shake a stick at. And then there are the windows, opening up in the ceiling and the outer wall, all offering a one-way view outside and into the vibrant bit of nature Skycrest has to offer - and just beyond that, the edge of the earth, falling off into nothing and opening up into (this morning) a brilliant pink and purple sky.

It's a relief to finally crawl into the tub, the water heavy with rich oils and salts that sink into my aching muscles, soothing away all the soreness of the past few days. I have no idea when I managed to drift off or how much time has passed when I wake again, the water still steamy and comfortable thanks the the magic of a few large heated river rocks. When I open my eyes, however, the sky is a pale blue and the room is awash in the light of a high sun.

First the couch. Now the tub.

Ugh, I'm never getting a proper sleep. Groaning, I sit up and carefully extricate myself from the warm of the water which pools on the floor before vanishing as I drip unchecked in the middle of the room. Something had woken me, but I'm still too groggy to know what... at least until I hear it again - a faint knocking coming from the front door.

Fucking Richard.

I practically growl as I snatch up a dingy robe from the hook, more for the chill in my backside than any modesty as I march through the bedroom and into the front room to answer the door. I'm already yelling at him for his intrusion, robe still flung wide open, when I jerk the door open to tell him to piss off. What I'm faced with, however, isn't Richard.

It's Ljuba.

"How in the fuck-?" I ask after I've stared at her for a long moment of shock, my head popping out the door to look past her just in case Richard - or someone else - is hiding somewhere on the steps. "The door is warded! How the fuck did you get up here?!"

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33 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:02 pm

"Please," I scoff, his partial nudity doing little to deter me as I duck under his arm and step in with my basket in hand. Once past him, I set the basket at my feet, scanning the cluttered room curiously before turning back to look at Lavellan.

"'Warded,'" I laugh, my fingers making quotations as I say the word, "Like a little dream drop is going to stop me." There's an anxiousness in my tone though as I watch him, as though trying to gauge whether he's actually bothered by my being here. Regardless, I continue.

"No, uhm- I need to talk to you. You see, you have the distinction of being the only other person in this city that I know, so we're gonna talk. Or, I'm going to talk. You're going to listen. You don't have to comfort me or offer advice or respond whatsoever, but you are going to listen."

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34 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:07 pm

"I could hex you instead," I threaten as my gaze roves over her suspiciously, weighing her carefully. Unfortunately, my curiosity gets the better of me and I sigh as I shut the door. "Come on then," I say shortly before glancing back at her to wave her away from the table in the center of the room. "Don't bump anything! I'm not reviving you if you hurt yourself."

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35 Re: These Violent Delights Have Violent Ends on Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:09 pm

"I honestly expected you to have a nicer place," I remark as I grab my basket and wander after him, the assault on my senses of smells from the various herbs only making my lingering headache worse. "Or, you know... A bigger one."

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