Calamity Isis Mae Sensibility, Gina Wright, Jeon Smythe, 'Melvin', & Panos Lambros
Gina could only catch the last moments of Calamity speaking when the teenager entered the crowded guest room. What was said specifically was missed but she did witness Panos toss his head back, swinging his hair dramatically away from his face and shielding it with a hand to the forehead briefly. Gina opened her mouth to tell Jeon that Hedspeth had smashed her flask of smelling salts, but hesitated when she saw how stressed everyone was. She hovered at the door, trying to work out what was going on.
"I will not have you touch him at this time apothecary." the king growled once hearing the strange mention of a 'stethoscope'.
"As you command," Jeon sighed, lifting his hands palm up to show they were empty as he stood up.
The probe glanced at the king warily. It still had its darts loaded.
Lynia's hands dimmed and she pulled them away, the healer only glancing at her firmly spoken king. Opening his eyes, the red-haired magician set his eerily calming maroon eyes on the Zyan doctor and blonde.
The man reached up to grab one of Lynia's hands and she squeezed his in return. "There for me once more." the man said with a tired smile. Standing and helping himself to be closer, the royal man of power patted the man's chest, and for a moment O'Doln looked to him perplexed.
"You are awake! My friend I am in need of you to save our people." O'Doln pulled himself up, Lynia helping. However the long haired man, moving aside wool lined sheets kept a fixed stare on the king quietly. "O'Doln I need your focus now. Are your thoughts clear?"
"I think...they are..." With a focused stare he studied his ruler.
Gina’s heart leapt into her mouth. Was it just the king’s shifted attitude that had him perplexed...or could he somehow sense the magic that Cal had worked on him?
Lynia stepped back, appearing as if she was holding back frustration. Perhaps because the king stepped in between her and O'Doln. Panos squeezed Calamity's hand intently.
"What are we going to do?!" Panos shrieked, dramatically staring at his 'wife'. "They are going to kill us!" This over the top shouting broke the magician’s focus and he turned his unusual eyes over to Calamity. Melodramatic or not, Gina could have kissed Panos for the quick-thinking distraction.
"What has happened?" O’doln asked.
Cal was chewing her lip again, looking close to her wits’ end, so Gina piped up for her.
“There’s Draconians in the castle, sir.” she said. “A prisoner had arcanium on him and he used it to knock out half the castle and escape. Now he’s using a portal to bring his army inside the walls! We were hoping you could help fight them, or maybe magic the guests to safety and come back with more soldiers…”
In the chaos of the room another servant came in past Gina, then Calamity and Panos. He had a handled tea pot and several metal cups pinned to his torso by his arm. Rushing to Jeon the man presented them.
"Apothecary you wanted tea?"
"Ah, excellent! That's for the patients who are awakening, with a good dollop of honey mixed in, they need the sugars and the caffeine, best thing for clearing the cobwebs," Jeon explained, then pointed to O'Doln. "Him first, he's got a lot of heavy work to do, and then the Lady Lynia, who's done a lot already."
With Jeon's help the young man lobbed some honey into a tea cup, poured it and handed it to the man with light, red, facial hair.
"I'd warn you to take it easy," Jeon said, rounding on the mage, "But that would just fall on deaf ears. So drink up, you'll need it."
The Probe scanned the immediate area, looking for heat signatures, hoping to spot the invaders. Within its range, its senses picked up the hundreds of persons moving about the castle, presumably the staff and some guards. Further out it detected hundreds more moving quickly away from the castle, and some other figures running chaotically. Part of the military, as Melvin could deduce from the formations, and panicking civilians made up those running about frantically.
The Probe frowned, trying to determine where, if anywhere, fighting was taking place. Within its range there were no signs which could be detected.
Meanwhile, O’doln gradually consumed the empowering drink. Lynia watched him intently as he was doing so. Calamity took the moment of silence to breathe and speak up.
"Lord, we need your help to rally your people." Now her tone was polite but rather than angry, a touch desperate. She looked at Panos, sharing eye contact with him, but remained silent.
Lynia took the cup from O'doln, had it refilled, and drank herself. The pointed eared man stood up. At this, king Kinglos' eyes followed the man, denoting a lot of awe and trust towards the spell caster.
"What can we do?" the king asked O'doln.
"The Draconians will have more magic after the use of the portal. I will have to fight the threat." The mage seemed to smile at Lynia with closed lips, an intimate but careful look in his eyes while he took the cup back from her once emptied. "Another please." he asked the servant. Panos meanwhile kept his eyes down to avoid seeing the man.
Jeon glanced between the mage and the healer, then sighed. No wonder she insisted on going to him when she recovered. No doubt she was carefully watching him, lest there was a repeat. For Cal's sake, he hoped not. While she was functional, she still needed rest; time to properly mend, no matter what the MedBot had injected her with.
He could still feel the pull from the king and from Kevin, and this lot of young people, but from O'doln and Lynia...?
Cal straightened her back - so there was no escape, at least not yet. It couldn't be the first option. "We have to attack now to spare my people's lives." Though as her vision kept on O'doln, what she meant was he needed to take action. Yet she did not want to speak too directly to the man who might spot her for who she really was if he looked too closely.
Turning her eyes to Gina, the girl gestured silently with confusion and a hand motion to the door, asking where Charlie was. Gina spread her hands in hesitant apology.
"Hedspeth smashed my vial..."
She took a breath, coming to the same conclusion as Cal. It looked like they were stuck here for now. They would have to fight. Calamity looked back ahead to the men she was doing her best to navigate. Though the body language was subtle, the way in which her brow twitched flagged her heightened stress.
Kinglos wasn’t in a much better state. Bouncing a leg up and down, the anxious decision making process he was going through in his mind was showing in his body language. Calamity worried that the man was on the edge of following O'doln.
"They said the Draconians are in the first circle." Gina relayed, hoping to speed and clarify the king's decision. "If we can't get our people out of harm's way then we can still make sure the Draconians don't get in." She looked from Cal to Kinglos. "The captain's holding them at the gate for now. Perhaps we should join him, m'lord?"
With leather platforms to take him to full height, the King reacted agreeably to Gina's words.
"All our abilities will go in that direction." King Kinglos decided for everyone involved.
Lynia grimly agreed with a nod. Calamity squeezed her hand tighter, accidentally hurting Panos, who flinched. She looked at him apologetically while O'doln returned the thrice emptied cup to the servant.
"I will see your famed strategic reputation take center stage." the pointed-eared man said directly to Calamity, who nodded to roll with the unexpected punch.
Fighting. Jeon sorely wished whatever forces had brought him and Melvin to this place had thought to bring his spacesuit as well - his handgun and an extra magazine were in the outer pocket of his spacesuit. Alas, the spacesuit was probably still lying on the airlock floor.
It didn't look like these people knew much about gunpowder - who develops explosives when they've got magic? Nor did they have the time to make some. What could they used to perhaps turn the tide here?
"My good man," he purred, turning on the servant playing 'mother' with the tea pot, "Do you know where we could get our hands on some strong spirits of alcohol, some bottles and some rags?"
Melvin could probably pee grain alcohol, but that would raise too many questions. But with the king, there had to be a supply of empty bottles, surely?
He wondered if this world had ever seen the Molotov cocktail?
Gina grasped his intention quickly enough. “You mean, to make fire bombs?” she asked for the benefit of their renaissance-world hosts.
The two servants looked to Calamity, who briskly nodded. "Give the apothecary anything he requests."
At this the servants set the honey and tea on the end table and took off to fetch the next thing. Before the winds of conflict entirely usurped her ability to garner attention, Cal’s amethyst eyes laid on Jeon, but with the colder gaze of the character she had to portray in front of the others.
"She could use another vial if you have one." Calamity said to Jeon, indicating Gina. They ought to try waking Councilman Charlie to see if he could de-escalate the king from risking himself. The only thing it seemed king Kinglos was going to listen to for now was anything lining him up to get killed, and that she could not risk happening.
"Yes, my lady," Jeon said, then turned to the Probe. "I don't suppose you have any more on you?"
The Probe frowned ever so slightly. What it had was packaged for the 23rd century, not this magical Renaissance era. If it handed over plastic and foil packaging, it would be noticed.
They did have glass, to be sure. It had some glass vials for collecting blood samples, part of the disguise for the old medbot unit it played around Jeon. It could pop some of the capsules into that and hand it over.
With a curt nod, it pulled out a vial with five ammonia inhalants inside, carefully cupping its hand to hide the plastic-mesh the smelling salts were contained in from the rest of the room as it handed it to Gina. The orange-red of the synthetic rubber stopper would hopefully go unnoticed, as the room had other concerns.
"This will teach me to go out without my medical bag," Jeon signed softly. The other Jeon surely had something at their workshop, suitable for this period.
“I’ll be two seconds.” Gina promised, taking the vial. As she hurried to the door, her eye fell upon the tea and honey that the servants had abandoned. Fuck it. she thought, and quickly made up another cupfull for adviser Charlie. It couldn’t hurt at least.
Calamity watched Gina leave and then stepped forward, her arm holding behind her as Panos didn't wish to go ahead. Trying to save face, she retreated back to where she stood with a stoic face.
"He is the most quiet boy I've ever seen." Lynia said passingly about 'Melvin' as she looked down to him for a moment.
The Probe looked up, frowning slightly.
"He's never said a word to me," Jeon admitted truthfully, giving the Probe a look of his own.
Lifting its right hand, fingers closed and thumb outstretched, the Probe folded its fingers on top of the thumb while twisting the hand to point at its mouth, as if a mouth was closing.
"However, he's very expressive with his hands," Jeon smirked with a slight shrug. Well, MedBot had helped him learn a bit of sign language. "So, what's next?"
Kinglos began to make his way to the door, Odoln coming to his side and the healer following. Now Calamity couldn't think of any way to stop the momentum. Taking Panos to the side, out of the trio's way she looked at the boy she was bound to keep close.
She had made a promise, but Panos actively had a fear of the red headed magician that, while warranted, was far more stiffing than her own. Still, when she tugged on her hand firmly yet gently he came along quietly.
“Hello again.” Gina greeted Hedspeth grimly as she entered the neighbouring room for the second time. Her anticipated mood was well deserved, for her reply was a pouting glare.
She set the metal teacup down on a rickety table near the door, and this time cracked the salt capsule before carrying it over to the two advisers. The smell of ammonia followed her as she crossed the room to the opposite side of the bed and waved the acrid mixture under Charlie’s nose. As soon as the man began to cough, she ran back for the tea.
“Wake up sir.” she urged Charlie as she returned. “The king and the marchioness need your help!”
Charlie's heterochromatic eyes looked around groggily, their hazel and teal colors searching until he saw Gina.
"Oh? How?" the man asked with returning urgency, struggling to push himself off the bed.
"I'm crippled, not retarded. The king ought to have my advice." Hedspeth bitched as Gina hurried back with the cup.
Yeah right. Gina thought, The king’s already likely enough to die without you steering him into it as well.
She gave the cup to Charlie, and the late twenty something man began to drink it.
"What happened?" he asked.
"The Marchioness made a grave error..." Kevin said with a trailing sigh, getting Charlie’s worried attention away from Gina to listen further to him.
“It’s easy to make errors when the other side’s got arcanium and treachery.” Gina headed him off. She took adviser Charlie’s arm and began to help him towards the door with cup still in hand. “A Draconian prisoner escaped and stunned all the guests with some kind of spell. He’s opened a portal in the outer ring and now the whole Draconian army is trying to come through.”
Ending Kevin's spell over Charlie earned the teenager a glare before she could make her way out. Paying it no mind, she shoved the door open and looked around for the others.
Calamity Isis Mae Sensibility, Gina Wright, Jeon Smythe, 'Melvin', & Panos Lambros
“I’ve got him, marchioness!”
Calamity and the others turned to look, the eager voice catching them off guard. King Kinglos smiled at adviser Charlie.
"Is what this young woman said true? We are under attack?" Charlie looked to the firm-faced guards by the doors, and the expressions of the others. Kinglos stepped towards the well dressed man, back straight and posture self assured.
"Yes, and we will go rally the men to fight the scaly horde." Waving a hand the king invited Charlie to join the battle. Looking eye to eye, Charlie created a pause.
"My lord, the men are more familiar with the marchioness, it might be her place to rally them." The Adviser sighed. "Sir, please reconsider, you would be a target for the Draconians."
Calamity felt a great relief hearing the man echo her thoughts without risking her social position she struggled to maintain. "That is a thought to consider." the young leader pressed into the conversation. King Kinglos swayed in his platforms.
"What do you say we do then?" The king crossed his arms.
“Everyone will know you were here, m’lord.” Gina put in, trying to encourage Kinglos. “If we win, it’ll be your victory too. But if you die, then what? The kingdom needs its king. Lead from the back while the marchioness leads from the front.”
"Sir, we may be running out of time." O'doln added with a calm tone of voice. The king tossed a hand his way, sending the pointed-eared man off.
"Go to the battle." the king commanded, and the redhead rushed down the hall. Calamity watched him go hesitantly, then, she decided to walk quickly after him, which provoked Lynia to join her.
"Have we found who supplied the arcanium?" Charlie asked, "If we do not find the source, we could be in more danger."
Gina tugged at her hair as they all set off towards the gate, where hopefully Cal’s captain would have more news for them. “Lynia thought he’d hidden it under his nails.” she said to Charlie, remembering the healer’s last words before Cal’s voice had knocked them all out. “Do the Draconians have any arcanium of their own?”
Charlie's forehead wrinkled as he raised his brows at great height.
"No!" the man answered, while his king scowled wordlessly and looked between Charlie and Gina. The distance between Gina and the rest of the group grew as King Kinglos kept her anchored in the hallway.
"You have been a helpful young lady. I will have your help again finding the man who has supplied the Drake." he said with a stern, but, certain tone to his voice. Charlie turned his unusual eyes on Gina to study her reaction, smiling closed lips.
Gina felt a shiver run down her spine. She didn't want to leave Cal and Panos, but the king was giving her little choice.
"Of course sir." she said, and nodded emphatically while her mind continued to race, trying to deal with this latest curveball. Lynia said there was a torture master who the Drac attacked...what was his name? Did she tell us...?
Jeon's smile became fixed. What was this "arcanium"? Arcana meant "secrets", and cards in a Tarot deck were split into two groups - the major and minor arcana. Amy liked to play with a tarot deck, he remembered.
Somehow, he didn't think it was likely they were grinding up tarot decks for it.
He frowned, leaning over to The Probe, which glanced up at him.
"You'd tell me if this was a sim, yes?" he whispered. "Or some sort of weird dream?"
The Probe stopped, turning abruptly to face Jeon, and with great precision, kicked him painfully in the shin.
"Ow! Alright!" Jeon scowled, "You've made yer point!"
The two turned, following after the rest of the party, with Jeon limping slightly.
"You didn't have to kick me that hard," he groused.
He was interrupted by Gina appearing beside him and squeezing his hand. She looked up at the taller man with an earnest expression. "Tell them where I've gone." she asked him, "And please take care of them."
The younger girl turned away from him towards the knot of guards and servants who still stood nearby, awaiting the king's command.
"I need someone to take me to the torture master. He's the last one who saw the Drake before he escaped."
"So, is someone bringing me what I need to make firebombs?" Jeon asked the departing backs, pausing on the door threshold. Where were those servants? If he left, they'd probably never find him.
He glanced behind him, taking in the rest of the room, looking for anything liquid that might burn, or could hold something flammable and break on contact. He also tried to figure out how many were here to help him make his improvised weapons?
"I don't suppose you've found where they keep the supplies?" Jeon asked the Probe. "Do they use lamp oil? I do hope it's kerosene and not whale oil. For all I know, they might use some sort of 'dragon oil'."
Hopefully, the oil wasn't extracted from the dead creatures in the dungeon....
Charlie seemed to look on to Gina's interaction with Jeon curiously, but any attempt to read into it was gone with his focus set back on their ruler. Curiously the king looked gloomier upon hearing Gina's request.
For Gina, another guard was responsive. "Yes, I can do that" The man's curt speech showing the urgency of the moment. King Kinglos nodded with agreement to Gina's request.
For Jeon, one of the help attending and waiting for the highness listened in on the doctor speaking with his mute youth. Walking over the man spoke up. "What is it you're looking for?"
By now though, Jeon and 'Melvin' we being left behind in both directions: Calamity heading off to the fight, Gina leaving with the King to begin the quest for the Arcanium trail.