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[P]  Counting Paths

Offline Algernon Sep 8 2020, 7:03 PM
  • Dorsum
  • Age: 33
  • Gender: Male
  • Race: Dire
  • Rank: Commoner
  • Total Posts: 6
  • Played by: Isilzheha
320 Mana · ?
Months into yet another case and they were starting to run into a dead end. Algernon would much sooner see the business end of a noose than compliment the assistance his supposed partner gave in apprehending quite a few murderous types since being forced into a job, but his expertise had come in handy. The Dire kept those thoughts to himself, not that he didn’t try to override them all the same, and would often loudly stifle them by finding any and every opportunity to make sure the actual assassin his father wanted to keep around knew of his disdain. Should the opportunity not be present Algernon had no qualms about making some of his own. The irony of a serial killer helping to catch other serial killers was not lost on him, and in fact only further added to the disgust and contempt. It was a tiring feeling, but it was one so easily evoked just by the Eximius showing his face. At times his reactivity was detested, but to some degree it felt better than sitting in silence while he acted like a child with a few screws loose. He was supposedly the one to keep him in check and ensure he did what was required of him, but with the near passage of a year now Algernon was already hoping he would get blindsided by someone’s rusty blade.

He blinked himself from his thoughts when a horse snorted, blowing air through his nose with a small shake of his head that caused the tack to rattle. They’d made it on the final leg of this particular journey to a distant village once belonging to Rogues off the Highway, as these things tended to be off the beaten path. It’d been abandoned for some time now, and that was evident in how the wood and stone were being overtaken by the nature that’d cleared to make room for the houses. Vines crept along their walls and much of the wood was rotted and eaten away. Even the paths were overgrown and took some guidance to get their horses through. This was one of two villages they were to visit, the other about thirty miles east and both of them almost two weeks of travel from home base. Too far into the trenches for the Dire, if anyone were to ask him, and it caused his nose to wrinkle slightly when he dismounted.

Algernon had muttered a curse as he did so when the mud squelched under his weight, but he fought the urge to wipe it off knowing it would do no good. It’d rained recently when they were at camp, much to his dismay, as it had extended their stay there in the jungle. Algernon led the horse onwards, hearing the Eximius doing the same when it became too dense otherwise, but both were already lost in their own routines. It often went this way when they needed to cover more ground. Algernon only had to worry about the bastard catching wind of something and tearing off into the trees howling like a madman. Sometimes he hoped for those moments, and the opportunities that would bring. Romantic whimsy, perhaps. A bitter thought- just as bitter as traipsing about in the middle of nowhere with the only company being a loathed individual who deserved nothing more than being locked away and the key helpfully misplaced for good.

They moved in their own rhythm, silent and absorbed in their own worlds as was preferred, and then they would come together with their findings. So far all Algernon smelled was the remnants of the rain, the decay, the stench of praxi emanating from the sweaty Eximius, and not much else. It smelled like nature, like the jungles he was used to here in Dorsum, and not much else. There weren’t even any campfires or any signs that anyone had been through here in quite some time other than the marks they left behind. Through empty doorways and windows there wasn’t really anything worth noting to look at. The deeper Algernon delved the more evident it was that they were the first visitors in a long time. Then he just felt frustrated, especially as the day grew longer and the heat continued to be a pest. As were the pests themselves.

Algernon started to head back to where he tied up his horse, expecting Mercer to have fucked off somewhere far into the jungle from the other side of the village. Unfortunately he still smelled him nearby, the scent fresh and lingering. His nostrils flared as he huffed, jaw working his teeth together until he forced himself to start walking again. Only a few steps were taken before something large and heavy shattered the flow of nature by crashing through the canopies of the trees. Whatever it was took out branches with it, the thinner ones snapping like bones, and birds took to the skies in an alarming uproar of flapping wings. Algernon’s hand had found the hilt of his sword, the comforting weight of the other weapon holstered at his side jumping to the forefront as well. The thing that caused the ruckus was met with resistance in the thicker portions of the vegetation, muffled thuds breaking into several, and the Dire had been fully ready to react should it have been needed. It was still and eerily quiet after the disturbance ceased, and that was when the wolf noticed his horse was missing.

Blue eyes set into a cold, piercing narrow where the equine had been. Of course the ground looked disturbed and there was no lead either which means that just went with it. He’d tied it firm enough, but what it had been tied to had worked loose. Fucking wonderful. His hands dropped from where they’d been ready to take up arms, fingers curling at his sides in rapidly growing annoyance. Which, naturally, spiked when the Eximius made himself known. Algernon tried to steel himself, to curb the irritation at the increasingly less than favorable conditions, but it hovered like the clouds of gnats everywhere. He didn’t bother to listen to whatever the man might have been starting to say, or elaborate on what might have happened, and instead marched right up to take the lead from Mercer’s hand. “Seems we’re down to one,” he interrupted, already beginning to guide the mare down the path, “so you can walk for now. We’ll trade off.” It didn’t leave any room for argument, as it often didn’t when he addressed the Eximius. “There’s nothing here, so it’s the other one. Unless you found something worthwhile.Doubtful.