(121-02-26) The Shadowcat and the Merchant of Sins
The Shadowcat and the Merchant of Sins
Summary: A thief makes an honest purchase of dangerous goods.
Date: 26/02/2014
Related: None

Moving quietly from stall to stall a mysterious female figure with her features concealed and eyes painted with kohl makes a few select purchases from various vendors in the thieves market. She is light on her feet and despite her unique attire has a marked habit of making herself inconspicuous.

The Thieves Market is virtually woven of shadows. Shadows of buildings, bustling, lurking people, shadows of dark intent. It's there Eva lives this eve, an alley carved out between two tight buildings at the edge of the square. She emerges in half-light, a round face and black-smudged eyes staring out, delicate fingers curling around the corner from which she eyes the crowd. Inconspicuous is just the kind of person Eva seeks out. She has an eye for it. The people who move between other people, those who don't want to be seen. Now and then, when the crowd shifts, her dark eyes fix straight on the woman with the covered face as if she's the only figure in the whole of the market.

The mysterious woman seems to be gathering almost random components from each of the vendors that apart and together make little sense. Her movements eventually take her to an alley where she exchanges coin for some documentation - perhaps the real reason for her presence in the market. Since two dozen transactions like this occur in the market every day the woman sees little reason to conceal the transaction. Such would only raise suspiscion.

Eva, without budging, tracks the woman's movements around the market. "Do you know who that strange woman is?" she murmurs, seeming to ask the alley behind her.

A gaunt man's face appears from the dark right over her shoulder, stumbling to be on cue, squinting ineffectively. "No, miss. Can't say I have, miss."

"Get out of my face," she dismisses distractedly, waving the scum off without a care, her eyes remaining fixed on the mysterious woman. Even there, her investment threatens to waver, but curiosity ultimately wins the small battle. As the man hurries to vacate Eva's personal space and scurry away through the square like a spooked insect, she begins to move from one alley to the other, following the stranger.

The woman appears to vanish behind a building but her absence is a mystery that invites further investigation. She could have gone up or down it is unlikely that she went within the building. Whatever pattern her movements are following they seem almost purposefully erratic.

The woman's elusive patterns prompt a predatory little smile from her curious pursuer. She weaves to and fro amidst the colourful crowd, slipping through a throng of whores — who she could easily blend in with, if she loitered — and reappearing by the building where the figure vanished, investigating the possibilities, looking with an eye for stealth.

Coming from the top of one of the buildings the woman finally appears behind Evallash. "You must be the 'procurer'?" the woman speaks in a classic Westerosi thieves cant. "I might have had to seek you out later anyway. Am I that much of a curiousity?"

Eva spins to face the woman with a whirl of dark curls and dark fabrics, her movements more eager than surprised; she displays an almost dangerous lack of fright. Perhaps she is that confident the stealthy stranger is harmless to her. "You arre, and I amm," she stretches out through her Lorathi accent, luxuriating in the strong syllables. "Those who take care to hide in a crowd are the ones who most require the gifts I give." She smiles, an uncomfortable and cheerless pleasure, studying the woman. "What is it you want procured?"

The other woman can be seen more clearly now. Much like Evallash she is a confronting beauty. But she also shares the no nonsense cynicism of the woman. Whoever she is this girls attitude speaks of a certain professionalism. "Information on the layout of the citadel - I could go exploring under the city but it would take me too long - I am hoping some civic records are lying about somewhere."

Eva's eyes narrow in undisguised calculation of the woman's blue ones. So intense and discerning, her gaze, one might believe it capable of seeing straight through disguises. "I am not that kind of procurer," she admits without regret, "but I can point you to those who are. Who are you, painted lady?"

"A shame - I thought you might want to branch out," Aralynne continues, "Well I have need of something else - a sublethal poison that can knock a grown man out for a few hours - is that more to your skills?" The leather clad woman introduces herself, "I'm Aralynne - also known as the Shadowcat in King's Landing," a name which carried weight in the Crownlands but not in Oldtown - yet. Eva may or may not have heard of her. If she had the nickname was associated with and elusive master thief - popular with the smallfolk.

"Shadowcat," Eva repeats this curiosity, sweeping her — cat-like, itself — gaze up and down the woman in the new light of her moniker. Whether she's heard of the master thief or not remains a mystery in itself; what's clear is that the name entertains her in some manner. She smiles. "I have the poison of which you speak. I do not like to call such potions poison," she relates casually, under the circumstances, "'Sublethal' …" she dismisses the word, foreign to the foreigner, "All poison rings thoughts of death. This is but a haze and sleep, allowing the user to do with the victim what they will. As you desire. Shadowcat."

"Excellent - I think Oldtown has lacked a good scandal for some time…" Aralynne only hints at what she is planning. "Do you have a range of them? I require that a person sleep for a rather specific period of time."

The hint of scandal brings a glitter to Eva's eyes, though it only serves to darken them further. "Mmm, yes." She adds a hurried little nod. "But the size of the man matters," she says with a grin at the corners of her wily lips, begging for a joke, "in such a case, Shadowcat. A big man can take more."

"Then I will have to do slightly more research. But I would still like to purchase a sample of your wares to try out. I am not yet experienced withg all the dimensions of the caper I am planning…" whatever it is - it amuses Aralynne. And her face is not used to smiling.

"If you would like to test the samples, Shadowcat, I can arrange that for your viewing." Whatever a sample of a substance that renders men unconscious entails, Eva seems quite confident, even enthused, about the prospect.

"A pious noble - how would it lookk if he found his way into a whore's bed I wonder? A difficult first challenge but I am more than up to it if the chips line up correctly…" Looking around, "Not many nobles around here…"

"There are nobles here," Eva assures Aralynne, "they send their eyes and ears and fingers to find their way to their desires." She holds a playfully wagging finger up to the woman. "Ah, but you are a…" She can't quite form the proper word in the common tongue, "fiend." Her mischievous smile makes due. Despite her mischief, however, she is firm, "I am not sending a pious noble to a whore's bed unless he wants me to lead him there. That is a trick you can play on your own. Come," she abruptly turns, weaving around the building toward the crowd of the Thieves Market once more.

"I am a thief," the woman says, "Often in the employ of the nobles as you no doubt have found yourself from time to time. I neither hate nor love them but they make for the occasional amusing test subject. They have alot more to lose than the smallfolk."

"And for that reason," Eva says with a grinning look over her shoulder, " — and their wealth — they are my favourite of clients." As she turns back around, she drifts a hand behind her, as if to guide or ensnare the woman into following near. "But I cannot trick them. Here, the wares you wish," she says, gesturing to the rickety table set up outisde a closed storefront, displaying innocuous perfumes.

Aralynne looks the wares over, "Impressive," she says, "rarely do I see someone make use of the thieves market to sell anything other than the illegal, ill gotten and inferior. It is good to see quality once in a while."

"How do you know they weren't thieved, by hands such as yours, to come to be here on this table now?" Eva challenges in light play as she rounds the arrangement. An old man wards over the table and pays her no mind as she plucks open a small treasure-box on the table and retrieves two small perfume bottles from within. They hardly differ in appearance than the goods laid out on the table. She presents them closed-fisted, just their ornate caps visible. "One causes a drunken haze, the other paralysis and, in some, it is said visions of madness of the mind. Both end in sleep, and too much in death."

"I handle only the most exclusive of jobs," the thief says smiling, "So thieves perhaps but not like me." She has a certain amount of pride in her work. "I think the drunken haze is less suspicious no?"

The second of the bottles is whisked back in the box, leaving only the one. "Two gold dragons," she states, all business, "it contains sweetsleep, and if you use the whole bottle he will surely die."

The two dragons are proferred - Aralynne doesn't lack for coin. "Worry not - I am not an assassin. And if I need to find you - you will be hereabouts for the most part?"

The unmoving look in Eva's eye says she wouldn't care if Aralynne were an assassin; she simply doesn't want the product misused by accident. There are other merchants to buy purposefully deadly mixtures from, and probably more precise than hers, but of course, she does not speak on that. Her slow, easy nod confirms as she pockets the coins somehere within the many folds of her gown. "At night, when it is dark."

The thief nods and turns disappearing without a sound into the dark. Another important transaction successfully completed.

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