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 Post subject: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Sun May 09, 2010 11:42 pm 
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A living painting, a caught moment of life flared brightly in its many faceted colors as figures met and coupled for the briefest time of a dance before once again parting. Crimsons met with violets, canary yellow with charcoal gray. The harshest of colors, white and black, were few and far between, marking those with a penchant for being one of the few instead of part of many. It was a never ending pinwheel of laughter, smiles and half hidden faces, each going by at a quickened pace as if the wind blew them happily along. No sun shone upon this counterclockwise dance; its sister moon brightly cast itself in its stead, giving an alien glow to the large windows of stained glass which made up majority of the dance floor’s walls.

The stone beneath their feet worn smooth, the large area of the masquerade was separated by stone pillars from the carpeted area of those who wished to wine and dine before succumbing to the accelerated heart beat and lively movement required to keep up with the rest. A sliver of a balcony held the live music above the heads of those enjoying the sound, the twining of strings dancing their way with the sounds of brass until a number of instruments became one noise that all found the ability to move to.

A red sea of plush flooring slowly gave way to the quiet, sharp noise of a heel meeting stone. Though it was lost within the general splendor of everything that made up the hectic mingling and conversations scattered to the edges of the room, it was still something that she managed to hear and feel. It felt different, the sharp vibration traveling up her bared leg, just as anyone taking part in the masquerade was meant to feel. Out of themselves. A new, unusual person or being. The black heels strapped securely to her feet were only the beginning.

It had arrived within her possession without note and without any commotion what so ever. In the streams of golden light that lit her room from the windows, her fingertips had run delicately over the bottom hem of the white fabric. Some of the softest fabric she’d felt in a long, long while but Stella couldn’t get past the idea that there was something missing. As a whole the bit of cloth in front of her seemed to be only a part of something grander. While it had come quietly, the reason did not escape her, nor did who had put it into her grasp. It wasn’t long at all before she found him, hazel eyes meeting his own gaze with curiosity, though it showed only faintly upon her own face.
 
Holding it aloft she questioned him, initiating an encounter later she would regret starting. “What is it that this goes over?”
 
His expression was sufficient to counter her question, a gleam of one enjoying themselves trapped in his eyes. To answer her question so simply with only a word though many other thoughts roamed unsaid was enough to silence any further questioning after his own reply. "You."
 
From spherical gaps she observed with a steely watch upon all who she could turn her head to see. No disguise which concealed each face was quite the same, the splashes of black, sleek lines roaming elegantly over the fair color that was the mask of a white tiger she wore. Sweeping over her nose and out to the rest of her face, it covered everything upwards from the tip of it, leaving a pair of rose lips to be seen of the mouth that only gave a suggestion of some amused expression.
 
Golden wisps of hair mixed with the edges of the white and black, creating a blend of the two which made it difficult to decipher exactly where the mask stopped or how it was held in place. The long lines of her straight hair falling past her shoulders led one’s eyes to the loop of fabric which wrapped behind her neck, holding the dress up without proper straps. Shoulders bare, the long line of exposed, peached skin from her neck downwards continued until, with mercy, the front of the dress came together. The way the fabric hugged everything it was supposed to only further led her to believe that she was being watched with a slightly uncomfortable amount of detail at the clan holding. It was a dress meant to show off the curves she barely let see the light of day and it did so perfectly. Unnervingly. There was only one thought that allowed her to wear such a thing and it was simply that here, at a masked ball, one was supposed to be something which they weren’t. So here she was. Not herself.

A slender waist and the outward curve of an hourglass continued the white dress, spots of black color taking up minimal parts as decorative silhouettes of flowers graced few places of it. Highlights of gold found parts of each pattern, a hint of shade to an otherwise colorless piece. Stepping forward to travel slowly along the outside of the dancing people, the asymmetrical hem moved gracefully along. The left leg was covered just past mid-thigh, flowing fabric cascading slowly across to the longer side of the right, the front matching the back once it fell past Stella's knee. Simply it was a dress that allowed an astounding amount of movement, the sounds of those clicking heels silent to all as she quietly stalked around the perimeter of those who danced.

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 6:22 pm 
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Echoes of music and mixed laughter reverberated off stone walls and into an entrance hall where a well dressed man, wearing a white paper mask, now stood. A red carpet lead up a grand stairwell, then down a long hallway till finally its crimson path arrives to a most magnificent dance hall. Stone floors of marble gave a strong slick surface for all sorts of dance, and the wide area from the dance floor and the dining area were large enough to easily accommodate the over two hundred guests who attended this masquerade.

A ball, held for pleasure, within the heart of Gravan's Ports’ wealthiest district. Of course nobody with money in Gravan’s Port made it legitimately. The town was full of nothing but thugs and thieves, pirates and pickpockets, and the puppeteers who pulled all of their strings. It was this class of man who threw this particular event, THE puppet master of Gravan's Port. A majority of the party goers were not natives of this rotten city. Many business men from other lands, some legitimate some not, a few wealthy men who might be swindled into a partnership or a scam, and many good looking girls brought in just for the purpose of enhanced company.

Steadily he walked up that magnificent staircase and was promptly greeted by an old, nasally voiced man with a guest book. “Name.” Looking upon the old butler he inched in closer. “Rex Shillings.” he said while pulling three gold coins out of seemingly nowhere and slipped them upon the man's guest book. The elder quickly tipped the book and let the coins fall into his own sleeve. “Yes sir, here you are, sir. Enjoy the evening, sir.” Chuckling, he walked away from the butler and down the narrow pass way.

Unlike the entrance hall and the ball room, the hallway had wooden walls and the floor was fully covered by the red carpet. Decorated around the wall were portraits of generations of the same family. Each man appeared to be in his early twenties, all the heads of the house while they were in their prime. In this excuse for a town ascending to the house's head probably involved the assassination of one's father; a right of passage when a boy becomes a man strong enough of both body and lack of heart to take the life of he who had thought him to do just that. His lip cringed in disgust as each picture he passed had the same smug look of satisfaction as somebody who had just raped and killed a young woman, taking its female child so she can grown into a life or prostitution and then one day share the fate of her mother. The taint of this town was to much even for Atrin. “This is the world he wants to save?” words that escaped his lips before passing out of the hallway of the house of fangs.

Finally leaving the pollution of the corridor behind his dignified senses, he is greeted with the bright and cheerful atmosphere of the ball room. Before the mismatched colors flooded into his sight, he was taking back by the full effect of a new song played by the band. Slowly the strings came in, formal and slow and ever polite; all the introduction a man needed before taking a woman's hand and proceeding to the dance floor. Then the tempo sped up and the brass came in, officially starting off the next dance with a bang! As those sweet sounds penetrated his ears, his toes began to tap uncontrollably. The music was in him and it wasn't going to let go, he needed a dance before kicking things off properly. With the quick tempo of the music he stepped his way down the next staircase and into the dining area, each step more of a bounce than anything else.

The twin tails of his newly altered attire followed quickly behind him; flaring up from the speeds at which he descended upon the floor. His overcoat was still red with a thin gold hem, but now a barely noticable stitching of outlined flames in purple thread danced upon the outside of the coat. His undershirt still purple and fluffy as even, stuck out from the unbuttoned overcoat and stretched out of the sleeves. The red slacks he wore matched the same design of his overcoat and red formal gloves with a single flame design on the back hugged his hands gently. His shoes were a thin leather with the same purple and red color scheme the rest of the outfit held to.

The most noticeable part of his costume though, was what he wore on his head. His bleach blonde hair was pulled back and upon that hair sat a red fedora with a purple ribbon and a large white feather. The mask he wore was unlike the others. It was completely white, pure as fresh snow. No extra design, no animal features like most others; simple, plain, neutral, boring, an empty canvas ready for the first 'con' artist to alter for a price; something he was not. Beneath his mask his flesh was also painted white all the way down to his shirt.

Glancing around the room, his eyes were searching and questing for a woman worthy enough to dance with. No scum from this city, no unclean whore who would burn with a most putrid black smoke. He wanted an outsider, an innocent, somebody pure. None seemed particularly pure until one such person met his eye and held its attention. Nearly everybody in the masquerade wore bright colors or shades of gray, this woman however wore a pure white dress. She was not the only woman wearing white but she was the only one who made it clear that said color was not a desperate lie. Her hair was a beautiful gold, so beautiful and pure she looked she might as well have been an angle forced to mingle with the denizens of hell. She was out of place, she was the one.

He glided through the crowd and came upon the girl like a shark coming across an unexpected swimmer. Quickly he was upon her and outstretching a hand to the tiger masked maiden. Light flowers now came into view as he now looked upon her unhindered by distance and passing peons. A smile crept over his snow white lips as he patiently awaited her hand in return.

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 3:20 am 
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Wallflowers blossomed in their nighttime blooms, full and colorful in a darker way than they would’ve twelve hours after. Shyness crept away behind painted faces and conniving smiles, rouged lips making promises and announcements that never would have come to fruit for not the liquid courage warmly making its way through rivers of blood. Racing through every curve and twist, it only added an insatiable desire to move faster, more daringly. The perfumed atmosphere carried with it a weight so divine and free that it was no wonder those who did regrettable things did them at all. With its invaluable moment of fantasy driven wants and actions it seemed to whisper against every ear just what it was they wanted to hear. Beauty. Fortune. Love. Danger.

As if choreographed the upper halves of everyone leaned over, either dipped or dipping, letting one see across the floor completely before the movements returned to the upright positions of it all. It was quick, provocative and done before those gathered could hush their voices to the beauty of what they would soon be joining. A tossed glance, the heavy scent of the room breathed in and out. Sutera kept herself from enjoying the beauty of the place itself, watchful of the people instead. Where many gathered, trouble was never to be far behind. The lambs dancing didn't seem to notice or worry of it though, but the wolves were out there somewhere.
 
It was an almost sad way of doing things, the samurai pondered. For every close press of bodies together, every skip and twirl, they would never remember one another with the way they jumped from partner to partner. Every over-stuffed peacock was just as ridiculously unmemorable as the next. With so little effort put forth into standing out in a way that was purely individual, what hope did they really have? Unless the opposite sex was just as ridiculous as they were.. and as she watched a wave of males come take away several of the women to the beginning of another song, she gave in to this hypothesis. They were all ridiculous. In such a completely profound way they were and for a brief moment she was left teetering on the decision to return to their clan's home. What are men to rocks and trees?
 
But as the colorful spin of dancers swept past and that peach toned face gave turn, Stella saw him. It wasn't a Him of romance or surprising handsomeness that caught her, but this peacock had a certain charisma about him and his steps were sure and straight, right towards where she stood. As one leg crossed over the other to continue the way she'd been, her gait slowed and she stopped, stealing the moment with an elegance of a charming pilferer. It let him know that she was not blind to his approach and allowed her to take in his entirety while there was a chance to do such a thing. Like the intricate workings of a great machine her mind started, immediately wondering why he was coming for her, of all people. Hidden, blonde brows crept upwards behind her mask in diminutive bewilderment.

Strings entwined with brass, purple mixed with red, white and gold. They were all their own separate pieces, their own orchestra. How the heavy brush, dripping with paint, had not found this one's face to fill in all of the questions left her with a spiced curiosity caught on her tongue, the tip of it moving against the roof of her mouth in quick thought, for there would be no time. Whatever movement, what vacant expression for an instant had moved her face, it had attracted this being. When the baby rabbit screams the fox comes running. But it doesn't come to help.

His smile said such a thing, chin tilted back lightly to regard his face. Painted lips and a mask over a mask.

Dance with me, he said.

Quiet words of an infatuated fool fell inside her head, crisp and new as were the fall leaves which slowly fell to their death. Learn to live before you die Angel.

Soft flesh fell over the woven fabric of his gloved hand, grasping it without the weak and unsureness that the fairer sex was common to have. Without hesitation or scene she took up the hand of the most ridiculous peacock of the place. Caught in the afterglow of being something besides herself, those eyes for once did not give away a hardened warrior who would turn to stone at the slightest provocation. Practice made for perfection and while the peons and peacocks passing around them made precious little pass between male to female as far as politeness went, they all knew their places. Fodder. Everyone fed off of everyone else, permission granted with the acceptance of a dance. And while Sutera could not make herself appear as such a dim witted female, she accepted the outstretched hand. Accepted that being somebody else for a little bit couldn't hurt. Accepted that maybe being a female wasn't quite so bad sometimes, and that learning to live wasn't so terrible at all.

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 9:40 pm 
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It was not long that he waited with an outstretched hand. Although not full of eagerness, this lovely lady took his hand with a solid grasp, much unlike the touch of a refined and sheltered noble lady. The eyes dart downward to steal a glance at her hand before lofting upwards yet again to connect with hers; it was time to dance.

The colorful shadows around the new pair slowly faded out of notice as the two stepped upon the marble dance floor under his lead; following a fresh path of parting people. The music was that of a waltz, a common dance amongst fancy balls, nothing to horribly special, though this particular song was a more romantic tune. He starts the dance standing behind her, hands gently rested upon her arms while their cheeks came dangerously close to embracing each others warmth. Before the white paint can scar her pretty face they break their embrace and the dance of cat and mouse begins.

Nimbly she dashes forward, leaving their embrace only to spin around at arms length and return to it, this time facing the clown of the evening; her silly peacock. Her hands, gently trailed down his chest from the shoulder, stop amongst his abs as his hands roam up her bare back; his gloved hand accessing no warmth or smoothness from the encounter. This ill fated embrace was quickly halted, the tigress had again pushed away, leaving only a single hand in his in which to follow. Fancy feet shuffle about as the two dance around the limited area of the floor until again, with a spin, she is in his arms.

“Your name my dear?” He whispers softly into the young angel haired maiden's ear; to which she replies: “It's a secret.” A smirk of curiosity gleams through the powdered face at the face of this new challenge; “I've always enjoyed a good mystery to solve.” he speaks softly. A shy smile escapes the tiger's lips before being suppressed as the dance continued. Moving along, left hand taking her right and right hand resting on her shoulder blade; he speaks again. “So Miss Mystery. What exactly does somebody like you do to get into a dance like this? You're almost as out of place as I am.”

“Know the right people and you can go anywhere.” Was her response to the question, adding to the mystery and continuing the pattern of dodging questions. They stop; a quick spin is taken lifting the woman's dress slightly upward into the air before the motion ends and they continue their march back the way they came. “I do hope your 'right people' are not involved in anything to horrible.”

She did not answer, possibly ashamed or just unsure of how to answer such a comment upon her connections to the world of organized crime. He in turn shared her silence for the rest of the dance. Few moments pass before he finds himself humming a tune of his own along with the band. Growing dreadfully bored with the silence, he can no longer resist hiding his secret from the girl.

Starting at the point between his eyes, a red dot appears on his mask. Slowly it spreads around the rest of the mask; darting and dancing about like a serpent, resulting in quite a unique display of red ash upon his face, ash gently drifting downward upon the ground. Quickly gaining the woman's attention, she attempts to halt the dance, something that Atrin did not allow as they continued to the end.

The climax he had been long waiting for, what he had already chosen for whatever girl would have his dance; the dip. Ash falls gently upon her face as the mask completely burns off and the magnificent windows of the dance hall are shattered. Muscular men in masks and wielding crossbows hold the room for ransom, while others with sword and shield stand guard at the doors. There, in the midst of a heist would the woman come face to face with the entertainment of the evening. She now gazed upon a painted face of red on white, the fully painted face of the wonderful clown mage; Atrin.

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 4:24 pm 
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Throughout history there rests a special place within everyday life that held the most surprising kinds of turn of events. Death, betrayal, love. History is a conglomeration of fact and myth, woven together until they become one as pens and ink fill in the missing pieces with fantasy and wonderment. What would the story of two star crossed lovers be without the dramatic ending of poisoned kisses and forbidden love? That edge of surprise and danger was what created a dog eared tome instead of a forgotten, dust covered one upon a shelf. Betrayal and stealth were the elements Marick had once urged upon her out of these many kinds of dramatic turns, the teachings of a woman learned and cultivated until after many lessons and weeks she became the tool that her Commander would benefit most from.

So it was she knew upon the first couple measures of the piece which floated down around them that once more her old lessons would be of some use. Weaving and winding the musical number fell from the pages and played itself around the pair as hands found their places and that too familiar chord of recognition fell throughout the limbs. The resonance of it brought up another dance, another time and the hidden samurai knew this would be a song she could dance through. The only mental gripe was of the romanticism that it would mean and the steps he took to make it even more so.

Staring vaguely out into the surrounding people she blinked those molten gold hues once to refocus her vision upon the male she found her gaze stuck on. There was no mistaking the one clad in smooth blacks, watching her with an expression she couldn’t quite describe or make sense of. Belatedly she kicked herself for not realizing he would be here watching her; he had given her the dress, after all. The heat of her partner pressing close brought her attention back to him instead of Akmun, though, and soon they were moving in the space allotted to them upon the floor.

Carefully planned footsteps and rules of the dance were followed as she moved in that same graceful manner she used while fighting. Moving forward and running back; it fit too well the story of love, of capture and deceit, of making this dance believable to everybody, even the one moving through the steps. It was after she pushed away from facing him and his gloved hand had trailed down her back that she found herself able to categorize him. There were some who remained silent while dancing, enjoying the music and the essence of the dance as a whole while others liked to slip in conversation. It was not a rule nor even a suggestion that a dance should be enjoyed either way, completely left up to those participating within it… Was he more focused upon the music and dance or was his mind lingering upon the angel he played and danced with instead?

The answer became apparent as he inquired of that old question which followed her everywhere, but what could she truly blame upon those who constantly asked it of her? This was a land of reputation and one without a name very rarely had any room within it. Her outlook upon it had changed the more she’d returned to her old teachings, the ones before Marick, and though she would’ve told him to sate his mental hunger, a sudden decision overcame her. The dance was just beginning after all.

And slowly their tete a tete blossomed into quiet whispers and replies, the mouse teasing the cat with every answer she chose to respond to. Back and forth they bantered, playful and mysterious as the room became something she could ignore and her partner pulled in her attention more and more. His last question was left wholly unanswered, reminding her once more of the young duelist who’d come forward accusing her ‘right people’ of some acts she simply couldn’t accept. For her sake, and theirs, she hoped so, too.

Up to him she looked when that hearing found something else twisting and blending with the band above: his voice. Like a bit of prey staring at the large and looming predator she watched him and his mask as they changed. Snow white, tainted with red… the spilled blood of the guilty dripping in its searing heat to the winter ground. He countered her attempt to end the quickly falling masterpiece of the dance, the bits of ash floating down like the meandering leaves of a dead and forgotten autumn. Chest rising and falling as complete control of her movements was taken by him and her body thrown into a rest, Sutera stared up at him without a flinch as the sound of shattering and falling glass erupted around them. It was loud and throughout it all he only grinned down to her, her arms stuck around him in that dip though she knew now was the time space should have been put between them.

Trapped face to face with a clown who was in on whatever was going on. He was playing the same card she’d been the entire time; did he know or had he been drawn to one of the only females in the room playing the same game by fate? Atrin’s disguise had been complete and his timing perfect, even through to the end. A masterpiece of music, even one of disaster and destruction, all required an absolute resolve and strength from beginning to the closing stages, and his last movement with her was just the icing to the cake.

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:24 pm 
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“I'm sorry my dear. I do hope you enjoyed our time together as much as I have, but I'm afraid that now I have some business to attend to. But please, make yourself comfortable.” The terror driven screams of the party goers allowed these words to barely slip into the woman's ear before his grip, the only thing keeping her on both feet, was not only lessened but abandoned completely. Leaving her to descend upon the ground, he turns away to address his very captive audience.

“Hello there peasants and pig farmers! The life of the party has arrived! Wuh-huh-huh!” Cries of fear and terror rang even louder throughout the hall as the name 'Atrin' was said through heavy breathed gasps. Soaking up the 'reverence', he basks in his glory for a moment; never able to pass up the line life or resist show boating. “Now what's a party without party games?” A terrified curiosity washes over faces of the people, at least the parts not covered by various masks. “Now I wanted to bring pin the tail on the donkey but when I finally found one I realized that the beasts smell horrible and I'd rather not touch the disgusting thing, so instead I thought of a new game to play. I call it Him or Me. You see the idea of the game is. Well I've never been good with verbal explanations so why not a demonstration.”

In an instant he was upon a rather portly man wearing a pig's mask of all things. From nowhere, also known as his coat sleeve, he had pulled out a rather large knife that was being pressed firmly against the man's neck. “Easy game I assure you. All you have to do is pick a random person in the crowd and my men will kill them. Or,” He says smirking. “I'll just kill you and you don't have to be the cause of some poor things untimely death.” The man was taken back at the outrageous request that had been given upon him. Sweat was pouring down his brow, be it by excitement, horror, or the strenuous activity of dancing with all that flub.

“But... I... I can't tell who is who with all the masks.”
“I know! I'm glad you noticed, I find it gives the game just that much more excitement when you don't know who you're choosing.”
“But... I... Um...”
“Oh fine! I see a better example is in order. I'll chose first.” He looks around the crowd full circle until he notices the growth hanging off of the pigs arm. “Oh, perhaps I'll chose this little piglet of yours. She does look rather cute, butterface or not.” The large steel shard slips gently away from the first pigs throat and pulls back to be lunged into Mrs. Piggie's abdomen.

“Wait!” The husband replies in a desperate attempt to save his wife. His cry did cause the blade to halt as Atrin gaze fixated back upon the not so little pig. “Over there, in the gray wolves mask. I chose her.”

“Haha! Now that's better. There's something poetic about willingly sacrificing a woman to save one willing to mate with you isn't there. Tell me though why her?”
“I... I know who she is. She's a crime boss who wants to own my entire block. She's threatening to harass everyone on my street until they either sell or move away. She said if we come and sell our homes to her tonight she'll give us all a better price than if she would have to get rough with us.”

“Wuh-huh-huh! Already I love this game! The pig becomes a man by killing the wolf to save his own bacon!” The knife points at the woman across the large circle of empty space that has formed behind him. Without a passing moment one of the bowmen rushed into the ring and fired directly into the woman's chest. The bolt hit her hard, forcing her entire body to turn before she feel onto the hard stone floor. Her black dress already covered with splotches of red.

The man pig sighed in relief as the clown beside him burst into uncontrollable laughter. Clearly his conscience had taken a beating, but he and his wife were now saved. He wanted nothing more but a soft chair to sit upon and rest from this ordeal when Atrin's cruelty reared its beautiful face once again. “I'm glad I could be of help to you but you do realize that was my turn right?” The man's eyes popped out and the look of surprised terror returned now more than ever. “Now we'll come back to you, pick somebody to die or you'll be the next person shot.”

“Wha!” The man yelled upon realizing he was not out of the woods quite yet. “But I thoguth!”
“Whoops times up. Henchmen if you please.”

The next bolt fired from across the room, piercing the pig man's thick neck. Without a second he falls lifelessly to the ground as his wife screams and falls with him, still clenching his arm. Her eyes fill with tears as Atrin laughs at the plight. “Shame that. He was doing so well in advising me who to kill. Oh well at least he dies a hero, blah blah blah well might as well start with you now.” He says to the morning wife.

Her sobbing stopped as she dried her eyes and stands to meet his gaze. “I know what you want. You want me to die here with my husband. To rant and attack you just so I can lose my own life. My husband gave his life for me and our home. I won't spoil his sacrifice.”

“Oh how horribly noble of you. Like I've never heard that one before. You just want to continue living, there's nothing wrong with it. All humans act in self preservation, even the roaches and pigs do what they must.”

“Think what you will. My husband's memory will not fade, nor will his death be in vain.” The woman, without so much as a blink, points over in a random direction that just so happen to land on a man dressed in green and bearing a frog mask. A bolt ripped right into his gut, giving him to pleasure of a painful death as he curls into the fetal position, praying for help before the inevitable trip to his maker.

“Fantastic! You see now THIS is a party worth attending! So lets see. Three corpses and only two people who have won the right to leave here alive, not counting the game masters of my helpful men of course. Now remember people so many more of you will get to live if you all play the game. If everybody kills then half of you will survive. If you all try to be defiant heroes however. Not so many will walk out of here you see.”

“Well this is pretty funny clown, but I've had enough of your games.” A strong defiant hero shouts from the back. “This is MY party and I'm sure you didn't get an invitation.” The man stands up and removes his mask. “This isn't just my party, this is my town. What makes you think my guards can't overpower your runts and then kill you?”

“Probably the fact that these men are your men. Or should I say were.”
"What?"

Two men, rippling with muscles, grabbed the host by both arms. They were standing guard over him for the entire time, waiting for the signal to make their move. “Get off of me you punks! You aren't shit without me! Don't forget who pays you!”

“That's just the thing with buying loyalty, you can always be outbid. I didn't even need to pay them, just tell them that you'll die and they can sort out all your belongings amongst themselves. Now please do stay calm and let us continue the game.”

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 12:29 am 
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His words gave her warning and as her only support released her without wasting any time, her hands still held to him. Scorned and dumped as she was, wits and a determination to not end up on the floor prevailed against his theatrical acts. Back straightening, his departure brought her body up from the sharp angle enough that her extended left leg could sweep back to right her wobbling center of balance into something manageable. A sense of betrayal within the crowd left her somewhat trapped where she was with a good front row seat to the clown’s antics, though, a place she didn't put into high favor. As he began his nonsense she took the time to gather herself and her surroundings. A turn of her head brought molten gold hues around the room, picking out those who had come in through the now broken masterpieces of glass.
 
It was not meant to be a show, but it was beginning to feel like it as he spoke of games. His flowing words laced with hidden threats tugged at her working mind as a clock began to shape and form within it. [Blade Dancer's Avatar] As the center of it with too many people to become charges to protect, a simple thing that was Atrin’s start of the game made it clear:  to protect everyone would be impossible. The weapons of the enemy seemed real enough and as the man pointed elsewhere to someone, giving in to the sport of this clown, the crimson fount of the heart continued to beat, killing itself as a body of some unknown, masked person lay still. Dead still.
 
Sutera was left to stare at her dance partner as a sick feeling curled up within her heart and her honor ignited.
 
He’s not kidding.
 
Staring without seeing she knew that with a couple men in the back taken down she could leave, but she felt rooted to the spot as another fell. The panic of those around her tugged at a heart some swore she didn’t possess. Stella's resolve became finalized and the long length of her skirt's right side shifted while he commanded and received the attention of everyone else. 
 
Shrill and sharp to the ears and minds of those attending the games of the masquerade, a rippling wave of concerned, suspicious and fearful silence swept through those assembled. Screams and sobs were muffled behind shaking hands, the flesh of them and gloves pressing to quivering lips while eyes turned towards the source. A demand for attention and cooperation came like a lecturer drawing chalk across a board the wrong way on purpose. Winces drew lines around taut eyes and shoulders habitually rose upwards as if the visible acts of suffering could dissuade the punishment from continuing.
 
The sharpened edge of the Rain Camellia was sparking against the stone floor as an extended arm moved it slowly along from left to right. It was loud and it was a painful noise, but it pulled the attention away from those surrounding her to the samurai herself if at least for a moment where she could speak and act without being ignored in the general mischief. Eventually the stares of many found the one who had been abandoned after dancing with the very one who took lives now, the sudden silence after the abrupt halt of her weapon upon the floor suffocatingly close. Eyes unmoving from her target of the clown who seemed to be named Atrin from the crowd's whispers, her hands moved to punctuate the silence with the ring of her katana's blade disappearing back into its sheathe.
 
Its weight brought her arm down loosely at her right side, fingers warm against the equally heated metal where it'd been previously pressed to her thigh. Where he stood she faced, determined in the decision she had begun to press forward with.

Him or Me.

"You or me. I'd say me but I think you'd need more goons."

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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:28 pm 
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Can't wait for MWO
Can't wait for MWO

Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 12:19 am
Posts: 1748
Quick note to everyone reading. Anything I do in a post that is a bending of what would be the norm in battle is of course OKed by NTW.
Quick note to NTW. Why on earth I ever accepted to do this 'challenge' is beyond me and I don't think I'll do it next post. I expected this to be done the day of my meeting at work, the very sunday after your last post... no more alliteration for a while. At least not to the extent I took it.
~~~~

The screeching scream of steel on stone seeped into their hearts as if the blade had bled through to the bone. Abruptly, all attentions are thrust upon the hall's kind hearted hero he advised against. Stepping forth from the flock of frightened fiends, the bold beauty from before speaks of a challenge. He stands statue still as the stranger steals his spot light, pilfering his plight of the pathetic peoples who he had ensnared. The dame who shared a dance now demanded a duel to the death.

Slowly turning, staring Stella down in silence upon the stone floor, the mysterious martyr stands . Curiosity abounds, he wonders where her weapon had waited whilst the crowd obtained a more optimistic outlook. “If you insist on this idealistic endeavor, I shall indulge you.” Kitchen staff run out from their ruse wielding rusty katana, bursting through the crowd and attempt to capture the combatant.

All to soon the scoundrels surround the samari. Their sub-par skill in swordplay could be bested expeditiously and with ease; their erratic and inadequate display would evaluate the woman and little else. Worrying over their worthless numbers was a waste; soon the scum would succumb to her blade, not even breaking a sweat upon her brow.

While watching the young warrior, a familiar face hidden behind a foxes mask approached. His assistant, the ever assertive Melissa, anchored her arms around the clown and kissed him upon the lips. Crimson color resembling his coat carried over onto his, completing the look upon her masters work of art that was his face. Behind her body she handed the bo-staff of her master upon its rightful hands.

_________________
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 Post subject: Re: Masquerade Mayhem (SSK)
PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 8:46 pm 
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Can't wait for MWO
Can't wait for MWO

Joined: Sun Nov 26, 2006 6:31 am
Posts: 1759
Location: Wherever Greatness is Found
Due to the fact that this battle has been timed out by SSK and it is less than one page (quite a bit less), I will award the standard:

+1 gold to NTW


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