(123-01-12) A Holy Hostage
A Holy Hostage
Summary: Miranda takes Ser Daevon and Ser Malcolm to get ransom demands from a man who kidnapped a Septa.
Date: Date of play (12/01/12)
Related: http://gobmush.wikidot.com/log:123-01-04-for-the-flower-fleet

The Undercity is dark, with wisps of fog seeping through the streets. It's hard to see the roofs of the buildings that loom overhead like wings, sagging out over the narrow alleyways like spreading wings. Its citizens are furtive creatures, ducking into the mouths of doorways as the darkness grows deeper.

Into this morass, a Septa has disappeared, perhaps led willingly away, perhaps not. Accounts differ. Many men mention a tall man, with silver-blond hair, facing down three Septas and a gang of sailors before stealing the woman. But those were other sailors, stranger to the city. Few, here in the Undercity, answer any questions at all.

In one of the narrow alleyways, an urchin boy stands, out in the middle of the cobbles. He wears a felt cap, pulled down nearly over his eyes, and a surprisingly warm-looking scarf.

Daevon's asked Malcolm along in case they need another sort. "Septa Raya's been abducted from the docks, taken from the two Septas she was with by a foul-mouthed man with silvery hair." That she's Rhaera Velaryon, an old childhood 'friend' and family member is something kept quieter, certainly not to be spoken of here. There's no disguising what Daevon is, even in his plainer armour, and it covered in a cloak, it's still more expensive than what most would make here in a lifetime. He does have on a helmet to disguise his immediate Targaryen features.

Miranda has taken to the mission as sort of a holy quest of her own, a concerned sister seeking a stolen woman of the Faith. Kind questioning and troubled voice, coupled with alms of bread and cheeses: her way of learning more of Septa Raya's kidnapping differs from the Maiden's Knight. She seems wary of her surroundings but clearly trusts her companions.

Malcolm eyes Daevon, and keeping his voice low, "And we are sure this isn't your cousin Maelys?" He's in his leathers, having thought armour would stand out, his cloak rather nicer than most of his things, but the tunic he's thrown over the leather is well worn and patched. He has a dagger on one him and a Braavosi blade on the other, and has adopted a sailor's rolling gait, and a very realistic Braavosi accent.

There is an overarching feeling of being watched. Above, a window opens, then slams shut again. For long moments, silence and mist creep in.

And then, out of the shadows, a tiny silhouette appears.

The urchin child approaches the trio, piping out in a ten-year-old's prepubescent cry. "You the three looking for the Septa lady?"

Daevon's here just as a guard it would seem. There's no signs of the Maiden Knight on him, but he is still, famous, undoubtedly identifiable. And he was around earlier, on his own, asking questions. Daevon may be many things, but subtle's not generally one of those. He does tend towards rich, kind, and perhaps a little too generous with his money. But for now he's taking Miranda's lead. Just a guard, watching over her. He shakes his head at Malcolm. "Maelys has dark hair and he'd never do such a thing." He looks over at the boy, offers a smile which he aims for warm and reassuring, but he looks to Miranda, letting her answer.

The one precaution the septa has taken is hiding her clearly expensive jeweled holy star within her robes. She looks up in the darkness to the window before focusing on the lad. "Yes, Goodman. We're trying to recover my stolen sister before harm befalls her." She speaks softly but with the air of someone used to being gently obeyed. "Have you seen her?"

Malcolm laughs softly, "You know, I've never seen him out of his helmet. I'd just assumed he looked like you only taller." He sobers as the child approaches and the Septa speaks. he too is acting as a guard.

"Don't you go leering at me, you dirty old crotchsniffer!" The urchin screeches at Daevon as he smiles. "I know what men comes to the Undercity for. I know it." But it seems to be more a taunt than any real concern. He then snaps his attention to Miranda.

"Seen her? I've got better'n that, lady." The boy beams, hands atop his hips, and prances a few steps, like a clog-dancer. "You ever want to see her alive and unhurt again, you all three going to do as I say!" He seems delighted.

"Now. The man as got her, my employer, see, my — what's the word — provider — he wants a simple word. So all three are gonna swear on your honors not to harm him." The boy screws up his face, trying to remember something. "And — and — and — if you does harm him, his men are going to do real terrible vilashuns on her before they give her back."

"I trust he will give the same courtesy to us," Daevon replies. "As long as he gives his word to issue no harm on us. That she has not been harmed, then I will not harm him."

Miranda frowns gently. "He kidnapped a woman of the Faith. A sin before all the Gods. What assurance do we have he won't break his bond by us." She isn't tall but she takes a knee to level with the snotty urchin. "But oath or no, I swear by the Father Above - I will do your master no harm."

Malcolm puts a hand on Daevon's arm, "And a time limit. We get in and out of the Undercity safe, but no promises for next week."

Daevon nods at Malcolm. "Yes. No promises beyond."

The boy smiles at the trio, revealing a gap-toothed mouth, and nods his head. He seems about to speak.

Instead, another voice calls, out of the darkness. It is surprisingly mellifluous, a low tenor. "I promise you tonight. And I expect you to do the same by me. Tomorrow, next week. Come into my home, or I come into yours, and there will be blood."

The boy turns suddenly and rushes for the shadows, vanishing.

At the end of the alleyway, a figure stands, silhouetted in the mists. It is taller than an urchin. "Here is how this works. Right now, there may or may not be fifteen crossbows trained on all three of you. Or there may be ten men with roofing tiles posted just above you. Or bottles full of alcohol, waiting for a wick."

The figure advances, slowly, its hands spread wide. "I'm here to talk. To deliver a message. And then to leave. If anyone follows me, or my men, the woman dies. If anyone does anything the slightest bit unsettling to me, the woman dies. Are we clear?"

Miranda slowly draws herself to her feet. She steps back closer to the pair of men despite the fact their proximity will do nothing from the described threats. "So what on your list ends in the Septa safely walking back to the Starry Sept with us, Goodman?" She seems properly worried, a note of fear in her voice but her carriage noble.

Malcolm does not startle or even grip his hilt. He turns a bored and casual gaze towards the tall blond man. As the Septa steps back, he takes a few steps sideways, spreading the targets a little to compensate, but relaxed. So relaxed.

"Tonight then," Daevon replies. He doesn't have a single piece of fear to him, though he does scan the rooftops, trying to make out where the ambushers are, and has already scouted out cover to dive behind. Always know your exits. "Yes, we are clear. What is your message?"

"Now, see, the Septa here is a sensible woman." The voice, as it draws near, has a definite sardonic note to it. "She cuts to the heart of things. She doesn't try anything foolish. I like that in a woman." Cotter is mostly visible now - a tall man, in a deep hood. The glint of steel is evident on his belt.

"I have it from the Lady herself. Proof she hasn't been harmed. Treated like a queen, her whole stay with me. What I'm going to do is, I'm going to lay this on the ground and back away." He lifts a hand, slowly, and flicks his wrist to reveal a square document, sealed with wax.

"Now, you get this to one Ser Daevon Targaryen, that there Maiden's Knight. He follows all the instructions in this note, and he gets his beloved 'coz back unharmed. He doesn't?" The cloaked form allows a note of sorrow to touch his voice. "Well. I can't hold the lads back forever. Send the Septa forward to fetch this." As good as his word, the figure crouches and lays the parchment down, then backs a few steps away.

"Y-yes," Miranda says with a shake in her voice. "I can g-get it to his Grace," she says with a weak nod. She glances to her "guards" for permission before taking a few timid steps forward. The shake has carried to more than her voice now, as her hand trembles as she takes the page.

Cotter hisses a few soft words at Miranda as the woman crouches.

Malcolm nods curtly and waits. so relaxed, so casual, so very, very still.

Daevon's keeping an eye on things and as long as Cotter remains further away from Miranda than they are he won't object.

Miranda slips off the shouldered bag and leaves it in trade, perhaps. With parchment in hand, she takes long slow steps back to to pair. "Bread. There's bread too," she offers despite the fact he no doubt knows it.

Malcolm's dark eyes are the only obvious movement from the pretend Braavosi.

Just for a moment, there is a glint of a smile beneath the hood. "We like bread," he confirms.

He stalks forward and grabs the bag, once Miranda has safely retreated.

"Alright. Our business for tonight is concluded. I'll send Ser Daevon a little birdie, when we're ready to make the deal. Tell him — tell him to do exactly what the note says."

There is a brief hesitation. "Doubt you lot would believe it, but nobody here wishes this to go bad. We're just makin' a livin'." And then the cloaked figure is turning, preparing to disappear into the mists and warrens.

Daevon steps closer to Miranda, in case she needs reassurement. "You did well." He says.

Miranda's too busy trembling to do much more than nod. She clutches the parchment white-knuckled in hand. She looks up at the pair of "sellswords" and asks, "S-should we go now?"

Daevon nods. "Back to the safety of the sept." He says. "Unless there's elsewhere you'd rather go." He sticks close by her. "You were extremely brace there. What did he whisper?"

Malcolm stands where he is, watching carefully for movement as Daevon comforts Miranda. he grunts, "sooner the better, I'd say.

Miranda gives a nervous giggle. "He wanted to keep the cheese…" She nods. "To the sept, and then f-fetch the Maiden's Knight at once." Keeping up the pretense as she knows they are still being watched.

The figure disappears into the mists without a pause.

But still, it feels as though there are eyes, watching. Ears, listening.

Miranda waits until they return to the safety of the sept and the security of familiar territory before handing it over, not daring to even peek at the words.

Malcolm trails behind the whole way back, letting Daevon do the close protection while he guards the rear from flankers.

Once they're back at the Sept, Daevon takes the letter and reads it, frowning slightly. "As I expected. It's a ransom demand. I'm going to have to speak with Dhraegon, or Rhaegor. There's no time to contact her father." He then says to Miranda. "Thankyou Septa for all of your help. Is there anything that I can do for you?"

Miranda says, "No. I'm fine. Thank you- both." She gives the paid a weak smile. "If I can do more, of course, call on me? I… I think I need a hot cup of cider and a bit of a nap now.""

Malcolm growls, "I wish we could just spit him.

"Pray for her," Daevon says. He nods at Malcolm.

Miranda winces a little at Malcom's harshness. "I will pray. That is what I'm best at," she says with a weak smile. "Seven walk with you both, and Crone illumine the dark path ahead."

Malcolm's tone is gentler with the septa, "It's sacrilege and cruelty both. I apologize for my language. I am very angry this happened at all."

Miranda gives a forgiving smile. Her mood seems to be gentling once back in her safe place. "Someone betrayed her to these men. If that… Fellow cannot be touched, perhaps justice can be chased elsewhere," she offers, eyes darting towards the Warrior.

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