After Sunset Gustav Braiden Prina

After Sunset

Characters: Gustav (Braiden), Prina

December 23 2004

The Inn of the Singing Rose

Wind swept across the desolate wasteland of ice and snow. This was the type of place that no one ever dared tread save for a few intrepid travellers. Here, in this place, resided a secret from well before the ruin of the old world. But this place was miles and miles away from the tavern where a small man sat on a stool, staring into his ale. [Braiden]

Finally daring to leave the confines of the Sanctuary, Prina pulls her cloak about her and heads off to finally explore the city. She winces at the cold on her neck, all but healed from her time in the convent. She moves through the courtyard taking in the scenery before her. [Prina]

Rapping his knuckles on the bar, the thick man summoned another drink from the dingy bartender. His garb labelled him an adventurer but his face marked him a soldier as did the way he held himself. The sword on his hip didn't hurt either. [Braiden]

Prina feels the cool rain as it begins to fall upon her face as it begins to fall. She opens the door of the tavern, seeking shelter and steps in from the cold rain. Blinking she begins to adjust to the darkness as she makes her way to the bar.

Gustav gulps from the oversized mug in his hand and lowers his head. Weeks on the road has made him tired and he was badly in need of a bed. Too bad he was broke. [Braiden]

Prina touches her fingertips gently to her neck as she clears her throat and softly asks for a pint of mulled wine. Cradling the warm, dark red mixture in her cold hands she makes her way to a table near the fire.

A none too gentle shove from the bartender wakens Gustav from his brief respite. He must look like no more than a common lush passing out on his stool to anyone around but it's still preferrable to a night sleeping in the rain. [Braiden]

Gustav sits upright and takes his drink to a table near the newest arrival and sips on it while staring at the fire. [Braiden]

Prina watches as the man takes a seat at a table near hers, curious for a moment at his movements and actions she finds herself staring at him. Embarrassed as the pale pink flushes over her skin she follows his gaze to the fire.

With a thud, the wanderer's head hits the table, immediately waking him from his exhaustion induced nap, "Bloody hell." [Braiden]

Jumping at the sound of the thud and words Prina spills her drink over her hands and the tabletop. A barmaid saunters over and begins to clean up the mess while Prina composes herself. The recent events having taken their toll. [Prina]

Realizing he is the cause of all the commotion, Gustav gives an abashed smile and nods to the small girl,"Sorry, girl. Ain't slept in a few days." [Braiden]

Prina smiles warmly as she unties her cloak and pulls the hood back. "It is alright. I am just a bit jumpy lately." She narrows her brow a bit with concern for the stranger. "Why haven't you slept?"

The haunting song of ship bells echo from the city docks throughout the streets and halls of Irae.

He chuckles, "Work keeps me up sometimes but mostly because I can't afford a bed. Weather hasn't been kind to those who have to sleep outside either." [Braiden]

Prina smiles warmly, "I see, sounds much like my people. We are quite used to the stars as our roof and the forest as our bed." She continues, not quite sure what to say to the stranger. "What brings you to the city?"

Rather than speaking across two tables, he rises and takes a seat across from her, ale in hand, "Looking for work. I'm an old soldier who has no wars to fight so I've taken to adventuring for money these days." [Braiden]

Leaning back a bit as the soldier joins her, she cradles her mulled wine and brings it to her lips to ease her mind at his closeness. She raises her dark green eyes to meet his before asking, "You hope to work in the guard here?" [Prina]

He shakes his head and takes a long draw from his ale, "No. I hope to find some rich, paranoid noble that needs some protection. Guards in this city are fat and lazy. Not my preferred company." [Braiden]

Prina's eyes sparkle with amusement as she hears the soldiers words. "Oh, I have only met one. He had the audacity to place me in the so called safe keeping of the sisters in the Sanctuary. Quite a paranoid bunch if you ask me."

Chuckling again, he nodded, "What dangers meet someone like you, aside from those with vulgar eyes?" [Braiden]

Untying her scarf, she motions to the two small marks on the side of her neck. "The beds in the Inn are infested with some manner of insect. I do know know what it was, nor do I care." She continues… [Prina]

"The guards tend to feel that anything ordinary must be of supernatural origin. I fear they are all paranoid old women." [Prina]

Prina pulls the scarf around her neck, carefully tying it back in place with her delicate fingertips.

Smirking, Gustav downed the last of his ale, "Sounds about right. Well, I think I must be off. Maybe I'll manage to find a wandering pine to sleep under before I head out." [Braiden]

"Rest well, and keep warm." Prina smiles after the man as he finishes off his ale, her eyes soft with concern as she wishes she could do more for the kind soldier. [Prina]

Sighing, he stands and drops the last of his coins on the table to pay for his drink and hers, "Heard some talk of a noble hunting an old vampire. Guess I'll lower my standards and check it out." [Braiden]

Prina giggles before catching herself. "Noble vampire? Don't tell me you are buying into that as well?"

Arching a brow at her he shook his head, "Don't put much stock in vampires eh?" He leaned forward and looked into her green eyes, "They're real, girl. I've seen 'em. The one their looking for is supposed to have been particularly strong. [Braiden]

Prina sighs to herself as she reaches into her cloak. "Wait.. One of the sisters gave me this, it is of no use to me. I am quite sure it is made of gold. If nothing else you can sell it, or trade it.

It is the least I can do for your kindness on such a cold night. Prina places the golden cross into his hand. [Prina]

Smiling, the old soldier stood, "You need it more than me. A girl on the run should always have something to fall back on." He handed the cross back to her, "Besides, they're just trinkets to real vampires," he said with a wink. [Braiden]

Prina reluctantly places it back in her cloak. "Seriously, such strange people around here. The next thing people will be hunting down werewolves and howling at the moon."

"Werewolves don't like it this far south. Humidity gets to them." He yawned as he gave the girl a wave, "Look me up if you're intersted in learning a bit more." [Braiden]

Prina smiles as she touches her fingers to his sleeve, swiping well trained fingers past his pocket where to leave a few coins and the cross. She pulls her drink to her lips, sipping as he waves and turns away. "Take care, and perhaps I will"

Gustav exits the inn and enters the alley. Finding a wandering pine around here was strictly wishful thinking. The only forest nearby that could even have a pine tree was hours away. He settled for a corner of the alley, pulling a hood over his head. [Braiden]

Prina relaxes a bit more beside the fire, pleased that she had a few moments to speak with someone in the warmth of the inn. Someone that wasn't trying to convert her from her gypsy ways. She orders another mulled wine and watches the fire.

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