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An Assembly of Commoners at Commoners Court II

I am calling for all commoners who are concerned following the recent proclamations and events, or have interest in contributing and becoming informed with regards the threat that Arx now faces, to come together and sit in session at the commoners court. You will be given the opportunity to discuss, comment on, and provide ideas on how you, and we all can help answer the threats facing the realm.

Nobles are welcome to attend, however, it is asked that they respect and allow the commoners their chance to speak uninterrupted.


Feb. 2, 2017, 7 p.m.

Hosted By

Jeremiah Julea(RIP)


Merek Larissa Dominique Silas Leta Alis Kieran Deva Ferrando Jayeth Joscelin Ainsley Aleksei Mailys Audric(RIP) Calandra Garza(RIP) Bianca Valerius(RIP) Darren Nathaniel Felix Tristram Aureth Abbas(RIP) Lazarus(RIP) Agnarr Takruid Aldwin Sparte Donella Costas(RIP)



Arx - Ward of the Compact - Commoners Court

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

Dash the Guard Corgi, 3 Iron Guardsmen arrive, following Silas.

Lazarus Mercier slips between the masses with his two union men guards and the trio settle down at a corner bench in the gallery benches. The merchant places his bird cage on the space next to him when one of the guards passes Lazarus a brocheur. Lazarus unfolds it and reads as his attention raises to those speaking.

Aleksei huffs a quiet laugh at Darren. "Sure thing, your grace," he says sagely, scooting over on the bench to make room. His gaze continues flitting about, noting entrances and anyone he recognizes, idly curious. He digs in his pocket to pull out an apple, then a small knife.

Bianca followed in shortly behind Alis, moving to her side upon recognition after informing her guards they would be waiting near the door or outside. They begrudgingly obeyed.

Bianca has joined the Gallery Benches.

Charlemagne the Unicorn arrives, following Larissa.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Lazarus before departing.

Larissa has joined the Gallery Benches.

Felix has joined the Gallery Benches.

"I'll strike poses for you if you need to relax.' says Malys, almost jokingly to Julea at what she is going to remember. Everyone that arrives gets a brilliant smile from the tiny courtesan. Everyone seems to have their person so she contends herself with just sitting quietly.

The Guildmaster squeezes Felix's arm reassuringly. "I'm alright, love," and moves to join him.

Joscelin has joined the Gallery Benches.

Finished with a messenger, Jeremiah steps away, moving along the side of the wall to take a position there against it--he pauses there, standing and waiting, attention either on those in attendance or Julea.

Silas arrives in all his Iron Guardsy glory: which is to say he comes with an escort of his guards. They stand aside as he approaches the gallery benches with the intention of taking a seat.

Garza steps into the court with his thumbs hooked on his belt. His impossibly blue eyes rest on Julea, and there they linger, offering a small nod and a flash for a grin. He then turns to find a place to settle down at.

Silas has joined the Gallery Benches.

Garza has joined the Gallery Benches.

Costas pauses just a moment when through the threshold, raising his eyebrow on noting a few blue-bloods in the peanut gallery. Still he takes a seat there on the benches, dipping his chin at the familiar faces and then settling into a comfortable slouch with one hand resting casually on the pommel of his weapon.

    "That would be a good idea, at this point, myself then Jeremiah will talk, and then any others that wish to speak will have the chance to as time allows." Julea says towards Felix, offering him a quick smile though it faulters and she lets out a nervous sounding laugh that doesn't match with her words. She scans the room, searching the faces, and seems to be looking for someone, and when she spots Garza, she nods once to him.

Larissa slips in and takes a seat at the benches, a little wave given to the other occupants before sitting back to listen.

Costas has joined the Gallery Benches.

Mailys scoots over to settle beside Costas, pecking a kiss on his cheek, "No Mira?" she wonders. The little Mailys is entirely treating the man like family. The kiss she gives him shows no real desire or anything in it, just affection.

Felix slides down onto one of the benches along with Joscelin, sitting close to the woman. From there he stays quiet for a moment, giving a brief nod to Julea in response to her.

Julea approaches the Judges Bench, but there is not quite the same lightness to her movements and as a result, she almost trips on the edge of the raised platform. A quick dart of her hand and she makes a grab for the bench, preventing her from landing face first in front of the crowd that has assembled. A nervous cough, and the young smith draws a few scrunched up pieces of paper from one of her front pockets and flattens it on the surface in front of her, her eyes seek out a face in the crowds, that of Mailys as she speaks. "I'm fuckin' shit at talking to people and someone before this suggested I imagine you all naked. But I've got an equally shitty imagination. So if any of you want to get naked. Ain't going to be objecting any." There's a clearly nervous laugh that follows before she begins.

Darren has left the Gallery Benches.

Squee, the Flying Squirrel have been dismissed.

Darren has joined the Gallery Benches.

Leta walks into the court, covering her mouth with leather-clad fingers to stifle a yawn as she looks about, reaching up to adjust the hat on her head. Then she walks up to the benches, strutting ever so slightly, distributing deep nods and friendly smiles all around before claiming a seat for herself.

Garza looks around at those sitting with him. He shrugs and stands and starts removing his top...

Leta has joined the Gallery Benches.

Joscelin looks at Felix. "Well. You heard the woman. Strip."

Deva arrives with brisk steps, and a grim expression on her face. Grim, worried, anxious, she finds a seat as near the back as she can and stiffly settles in.

Ferrando clanks in with a generally curious air and heads down the aisle looking for a spot to camp out for the meeting. Apparently spurred on by Julea's joke, he undoes the straps on one of his gauntlets and underhands it forward to try and land it on the defense table.

Felix looks back to Joscelin and snorts a quick laugh. The large smith's cheeks turn red and he gives his betrothed a playful nudge with his elbow before leaning down to speak softly to her.

Ferrando checked dexterity against difficulty 20, resulting in 18, 2 lower than the difficulty.

"Well, if you /really/ want!" Aleksei calls out to Julea with a grin.

Ferrando clanks the gauntlet onto the tabletop, but it slides and after a slightly ponderous lean finally falls off the end of the table. "Bah," he grumbles, and takes a seat.

There's a bit of a giggle from Julea as she picks up on Joscelin's words, and she arches a brow in Felix's direction. The giggle quickly becomes a peel of laughter at Aleksei's shout. "Welcome, to the second commoners gathering. I'm Julea, and I am now one of two members of the Commoners Council. And I'm tasked with representing and looking after the Common People." Julea begins, and from the way her voice rises and falls in all the wrong places, she is far from a natural public speaker and the nerves seem to be getting the better of her. "First, I will talk, and then Jeremiah will get a chance to." Her right hand comes up to stiffly gesture in the direction of the man in question, indicating Jermiah in the crowd before it falls back to her side. "And then others will get a chance to say their piece, bring up any concerns they have, ask questions and discussions can be had.".

Ferrando has joined the Gallery Benches.

At Julea's calling her out Mailys laughs. "That'll make it easier to imagine people naked." When Julea starts the show Mailys goes quiet once more.

Garza was really close to just fully removing his breastplate and tunic, but when Julea starts speaking he decides not to go that route and instead, secures both pieces again.

Joscelin turns red at the whisper and elbows Felix back, a little less lightly, but there's a curl to the corner of her lips.

Larissa has left the Gallery Benches.

Charlemagne the Unicorn have been dismissed.

Julea swallows hard, and brings her right hand up to touch at the brim of her old tricorn hat. Collecting it in her hand, she draws it from her head and sets it down on the bench in front of her. And realising that in doing so, she covered up her scrunched up notes, she quickly pushes it to the side. She scans the page, and continues to speak, frequently referring to her notes, "For quite a few years, the people of Arx have been manipulated, tricked and fucked over. We've had our puppet strings pulled and we've been all to eager to jump at every little tug. We've had the fucking Rex'alfar manipulating people at all levels of Arx society, from the common people in the boroughs to the highest born Silk."

"Because our enemy wants us to divide and they want us to fight with each other. Because when we do? We're that much easier to defeat. But they don't just want to defeat us, our enemy wants to wipe us out." The more Julea speaks, the less she refers to her notes, and while she is still clearly nervous, the passion when it comes to this particular topic does show through. "But, we can't let that happen. Arx is fucking ours. From the Bridge of Sovereign to the Hall of Heroes. From the beautiful stained glass in our Churches to the Stone Grove. From the darkest alley to the fanciest of bedchambers with beds that dangle from golden chains. All fucking ours."

Mailys slants a look up at Costas and leans a little into his side but does nothing more to let him know she's there if he needs an ear.

Deva nods to Darren, exchanging low words with him. With an apologetic, strained smile, she turns and slips out quietly.

"So we can't keep fighting each other. Unless someone insults your mother, then by all means, punch that fucker. But afterwards, remember, you might need to fight alongside that ass hole and you're going to need to be able to put all that aside." Julea takes a moment to turn over one of the pieces of paper laid out in front of her, and she peers at the scrawl on it, seeming to have spoken ad lib and having lost her place. There's a mumbled curse beneath her breath. In the end, she give up and surveys the room, "We will need to all have a healthy amount of skepticism. If someone is sounding like a shady fuckin' charlatan, chances are, he probably is. If you find yourself being encouraged to turn on others in Arx, question why. Stay in Arx, fight with us for it."

"If someone insults your mother, hire a Champion!" Aleksei lifts his voice to say.

There's a short, amused scoff from Jeremiah, hid behind one hand, at Aleksei's words.

Merek steps in, and steps off towards the side a bit once he is within. Then the man pulls his cloak to him, looking from beneath his hood, while he listens to what is being said or spoken for the time being.

    Julea briefly pauses then to find Aleksei in the crowd once he raises his voice, calling out back to him, "What are your rates?!"

Aleksei blinks at Julea's question. Then he calls out, "Negotiable!"

Joscelin chuckles at Julea, eyes warm and encouraging.

Darren looks curiously from Julea, to Aleksei, and then back to Julea again, the latter getting his full attention once more.

Lazarus smirks and shakes his head, Lazarus stands up from the bench grabbing his bird cage. His blue eyes fix on Aleksei for a moment and then he nods, motioning to his guards to follow him out. They stand up with him and follow him out.

Lazarus has left the Gallery Benches.

Julea gives a sort of thumbs-up signal to Aleksei, before she continues on, and as she does so, her gaze briefly settles on Darren among the benches. "Over the last few weeks I have approached most of the Houses in Arx, I have made them aware of how fuckin' hard shit can get and how much harder it will be over the coming months. And I am happy to say that their response has been beyond what I could of imagined. Every single one of the Great Houses has stepped up and agreed to help. I have been assured that the Crown stands with the boroughs. There will be food provided, there will be medical supplies. Housing, clean water. And for those that wish to join us in defending Arx, there will be training, arms, and armor. This comes from Grayson. This comes from Velenossa. This comes from Redrain. This comes from Valadin and it even comes from the Thrax."

Joscelin watches Lazarus leaves and just ... sighs.

There's a lengthy pause, and Julea searches out for a couple of faces in the crowd, and after eventually finding Jeremiah, she gives the man a small nod. "There's no sugar coating this. The coming months aren't going to get any easier. You're probably going to hear things, see things that you are going to want to forget. But you can't. You need to carry it with you and use as fuel. The enemy is not natural. But it is very real. But it is one that can be defeated. We've done it before. But not if we keep fighting each other. And now, on that note, I will hand over to Jeremiah to speak." And so, Julea steps back from the bench, and gives Jeremiah room to step up and speak to the crowd.

Pushing up off the wall, Jeremiah steps towards the front of the room where Julea was standing, giving her a bracing smile as he steps up, taking a deep breath and turning that towards the assembly in general: "I won't be overlong," he begins, promising.

"Likely story!" Aleksei calls up to Jeremiah with a grin.

"I ever try not to," Jeremiah -assures- Aleksei, looking amused. He begins--practiced and easy, noteless in comparison to his fellow Councilor. "The Common Council and Commoners Court Assembly are seemingly tied together, but let me say--and I understand it is true for Julea as well--this is the more productive and enjoyable half of our duties. I thank you all for coming, for showing patience,--I am especially grateful at the attendance of both the Lord Commander and the Guildmaster--I'll get to that in a moment, however."

"Perhaps we are worse-off than we were at the last meeting--perhaps. But it doesn't -feel- that way, I will confess. I feel as if, despite the growing troubles, the Crown, Compact, and people of Arx itself are all marshalling themselves readily to face the many dangers--perhaps you do not see it that way. That opinion is -welcome-, and you may express it readily. In previous meetings, all have been given a chance to speak--try not to interrupt, and let someone reach the end before we discuss. These are trying times--both the Common Council and the Assembly are -meant- to give you a voice. Please, speak--and understand that if ever you are afraid or unwilling to speak, you may pass on anything you wish addressed to Julea and I--we can bring it up on your behalf, anonymously.

I want to take a moment to address the workings of the Common Council--for now, it is Julea and I--I wish to see it expanded some, and have made suggestions to the Regency Council that they at the least add the Guildmaster, the Lord Commander, and the Archlector of the Sentinel--or some other member of the Faith--to the Common Council--two of those three are here tonight"--a gesture to Joscelin and Silas accompanies this statement--"and I'd like to thank them for that, and encourage you--even if those positions are not granted--to bring concerns to them. Whether or not they are formally ever added to the Common Council, the -purpose- of the Commoners is to bring a voice to the people, and allow your -voices- and -concerns- to reach those that can enact change--never forget that these three and more can effect change and address your concerns."

Jeremiah finishes, all the words produced swiftly, smoothly, and pleasantly--practiced. Out, and done with, and he readies himself to step down.

Merek moves over towards where Bianca is of the people there, and settles down into a seat to wwatch and listen on, nodding along with what has been stated so far.

6 Thrax Guards arrives, following Donella.

Donella has joined the Gallery Benches.

Dominique has joined the Gallery Benches.

Merek has joined the Defense Table.

Merek has left the Defense Table.

Merek has joined the Accusers Table.

Merek has left the Accusers Table.

Merek has joined the Gallery Benches.

Joscelin inclines her head to Jeremiah as he speaks, eyes flicking to Silas with a smile, before listening to the rest of what Jeremiah has to say. She disagrees with nothing and looks quite proud of the man.

Dominique comes in quietly and joins Bianca and Alis at the Gallery benches. She is stealthy silent.

Silas nods his head as Jeremiah and Joscelin address him, even if the latter wasn't verbal. "I intend to be at every Common Council, official council position granted or not. It does not change my duties one way or the other."

    Julea is slow to react to the completion of Jeremiah's words, but when she does, she steps up to the Judges bench once again, and then scans over the crowd, nodding to Silas when he speaks. "If anyone else wishes to stand up to speak, you are welcome to do so. Either on any of the things mentioned, or anything else you have concerns over."

Felix smiles lightly at Jeremiah, slowly nodding his head to the man as he speaks. He doesn't seem to disagree with anything either. The large smith rises from the benches once it seems that Jeremiah has concluded his business and Julea calls for more. "I have a brief bit of business, Master Sanguine, if you don't mind."

Garza narrows his eyes as he studies Jeremiah, his eyes finding Julea and staying on her fore a few moments. He lifts his head and rubs his chin with one hand. There's a look of curiosity all over the sellsword's face that he doesn't bother to hide.

Sasha, a smoke-gray mountain lion arrives, following Tristram.

Felix has left the Gallery Benches.

Tristram has joined the Gallery Benches.

    "Please do," Julea encourages Felix, stepping once more and waving a hand towards the Judges bench.

Jeremiah has joined the Gallery Benches.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Bianca before departing.

Leta sits and listens quietly throughout, and it's clear she has thoughts on these matters, but they are troubled and likely confused thoughts. She fidgets with her garments, then looks around the rest of the benches to see if anyone is speaking up.

Joscelin smiles at Felix, watching, listening.

Ugarte arrives, following Aureth.

Aureth has joined the Gallery Benches.

Felix walks up towards the front of the room, the man decked out in his black-and-crimson leathers. He needn't go much farther than the center of the floor to be heard though, given his size and volume. "It's good to see all of you tonight," Felix's voice booms out in his usual friendly warmth. "Many of you know me. I'm Felix Meadson. I'm here on behalf of the Knights of Solace." Pausing a moment, he gives a look around the room with his silver-grey eyes.

"I know that we are living in uncertain times and that the Dominus is currently under investigation," Felix speaks in his loud voice. "I am here to tell you that come what may, the orders of the Knights of Solace have not changed. We will still be working alongside the Iron Guard to help maintain peace, order, and protect the people of Arx." He pauses again, gesturing over towards Silas respectfully.

"I've come to ask that you spread the word and be assured that we are here to help. Things are hard right now and bound to get harder." Felix looks to Julea then and nods her way. "Master Sanguine is right. We have to work together, all of us, to make it through and I am asking each of you to help support the Knights of Solace and spread the word that we will continue to watch over and protect you while the Iron Guard restores its numbers."

Aureth strolls in late, hair bound in a neat queue at the nape of his neck and an expression of bland interest on his face as he mounts the gallery benches while Felix talks. His eyebrows pinch together very slightly at a certain point in Felix's speech, but whatever it is that he's thinking, he doesn't otherwise reveal it; he searches the faces amongst the crowded benches for a place to insinuate himself late with eyebrows swept high.

Fidgeting with his vest's buttons, Jeremiah observes and takes notes, attention on Felix, writing without looking--writing shorthand.

Aleksei glances over to Aureth, lifting a flask that he's apparently in possession of and offering a quick smile from where he sits at the benches next to Darren and -- someone else. Probably Ferrando.

Joscelin looks from Aureth's entry back to Felix, listening, a look of understanding flitting across her face.

Darren focuses wholly on Felix. He doesn't say anything, but he definitely nods along with the man's words.

    Julea moves towards the side of the Judges bench, leaning her hip against it, and slouching a bit a she listens to Felix talk. There's a nod at his words, and her eyes go to the crowd, checking reactions.

Ferrando sees Felix seems to be done, and no-look takes the flask from Aleksei to take a swig before passing it down the benches and then standing up to wait his turn.

Silas smiles faintly at Felix and momentarily stands from his seat. "The Iron Guard appreciates the aid the Knights of Solace - without them, straits would be even more dire than they are now." He then turns to survey the rest of the occupants on the bench. "There will be a reformation of how the Iron Guard works. I have written up a draft with our new mission statement and the changes we'll be making and I will be submitting it to the scholars for public publishing. I can hand out copies here, if someone desires one, but I suspect I'd bore everyone if I were to read it in it's entirety right now." He cants his head. "Though I can change my mind."

Costas has a deep frown on his face, and casts his eyes over toward Silas. "Can I get one of those?"

    "Lord Commander, are you currently still recruiting? If so, now might be a good time to promote the Iron Guard, and talk about what they can offer and the work they do, and perhaps even the requirements?" Julea suggests after Silas speaks, straightening up from her slouch against the Judges bench.

Silas checked dexterity + all against difficulty 10, resulting in 16, 6 higher than the difficulty.

Felix smiles finally at the crowd in general as he wraps it up. "I know you have a lot of questions," he calls out to them and gives the group at large a sympathetic look. "I'm afraid I don't have any answers myself as to the current state of affairs regarding the Dominus. I simply do not know." Smiling to Silas then, he inclines his head in a nod to him. "The Knights, as well, benefit from the voices of the people. We are not trained for this as the Iron Guard is, but we can learn. These are times that call us all to be better than we think that we can be. I, personally, am committed to this ideal. Thank you for hearing me out." That said, he gives a smile and a nod to Julea before more back toward the benches.

Felix has joined the Gallery Benches.

Jeremiah lets out a few short little laughs from the benches, glancing to Aureth and Silas, but otherwise continues a-writing and listening--recording what Felix says, attention to Julea next.

Joscelin pinches the bridge of her nose, a long-suffering expression on her features.

Silas smirks but shakes his head to Julea. "Thank you, but I've made my pitch last time, and I have proclaimed the requirements. Those of the Borough are welcome to step forward and be the change they desire - I fully encourage it, and some are indeed doing that."

    "Miss Joscelin, if you wished to speak on the crafters guild? Or anyone else for that matter?" Julea asks, finding Joscelin in the see of faces, she gives the woman a quick smile, before she looks around the room. "Questions, bitch, inform, or otherwise."

Joscelin gestures to Ferrando. "I believe he wanted to speak?"

Sparte is off in the back, just sort of watching the going ons with interest. He doesn't seem to be following everything terribly well, but it is still exciting to him.

    Julea lets out a small sound of exclamation and gives Ferrando an apologetic look, and then encouraging him with a wave of her hand. "Sorry-- And yes, of course. Ferrando, the floor is yours."

Aureth cackles noisily at the benches for some reason. Who knows why.

Ferrando doesn't come up to the front or anything since as a professional authoritative-when-necessary person he can project a pretty loud voice. Instead, he just declares plainly standing from admist the benches, "What about the King?" That's the short version, the tl;dr follows after a few moments.

Ferrando says, "It's great we're working on unity problems, but there's your solution right there. Wake up the King. It's simple, sure, but it's also worked for us going back to Queen Alarice the Great who won the war against the elves, saved the Compact, and if you keep score by statues and books and poems and all was the greatest Arvian who ever lived. Okay, so maybe the King isn't quite as -amazing- as Queen Alarice, not that any of us has ever met anyone who -is-, but still. How'd we all stay on the same page and not lose the war and all die 500 years ago? Easy. 'Do what the Queen says.' If somebody figured out how to wake up the King, then we wouldn't have to go around telling each other to work together. We'd just -do- it, you know, like we did -before- he came back all... out of it, or whatever. So, that's my question-bitch-inform-concern-whatever-you-want-to-call-it. When is somebody going to figure out how to wake up the King so we can get on with it?"

Darren tilts his head as Ferrando speaks. He says nothing, but he does nod his head a little, his lips pursing together in quiet contemplation.

    "That is something I know there are a number of people are working on, and trying to figure out. But, one of the problems is, it isn't quite as straight forward as it might sound. One does not simply just... wake a King." Julea says, her eyes going from Ferrando and across the room to Prince Darren, before sweeping the benches. "I am told that it is like looking for a needle in a haystack, and we need to somehow, refine how we search-- wake him. Nor can we just wait for that to happen, and hope that our enemies hold stay their actions too. We need to still move forward in the mean time." There's a pause there and then she glances towards the audience again, asking. "Though others here might have a better answer than I on this. Prince Darren?"

"... That won't be happening anytime soon," Merek allows himself to offer up in quiet contemplation, his tone much more somber than normal. He however leaves room for others to speak for the time being, while he settles back.

Aleksei slides his gaze on over to Darren, curious about his answer.

Joscelin has left the Gallery Benches.

Mongoose have been dismissed.

1 Unliveried Guard have been dismissed.

Darren clears his throat as he is addressed, though he does rise with a nod to Ferrando and Julea. "Well, I wasn't actually prepared to speak," he chuckles, though he looks around to all of those gathered. "If you want the truth? We don't know. We don't know how to wake him up. There's been a lot of speculation, but no one has figured it out yet. I was positive the elves would hold the key," he frowns at that, and shakes his head. "His spirit was cast away, and trying to find it is like looking for a specific salt of ocean in the entire fucking ocean. The only thing we can go on is that the Goddess of Death - The Queen of Beginnings and Endings - can bring his soul back. But I don't know the first thing about pleading to a damn God about getting somebody's soul back. If one of you do? Talk to me. If you don't trust me? Fair. Talk to whoever you /do/ trust. The more people we have looking into this, the better chances we have of finding an answer."

Aleksei has left the Gallery Benches.

Keso have been dismissed.

Aleksei has joined the Gallery Benches.

Aureth leans, slowly, back against the bench he's sitting on. His arm slings across the back of the bench. He tilts his head back and stares thoughtfully toward the sky. He asks, in a tone as of idle musing, "Have you /tried/ to plead to the goddess to get his soul back?"

Merek reaches up to his face and rubs it a bit with a sigh at Darren's statement, then just shakes his head a small bit while he finds a drink. Perhaps something with whiskey in it, to take a sip from.

Silas remains silent on the subject of the King and his theoretical awakening.

    From somewhere on the Judges bench, Julea finds a flask and she uncaps it, taking a brief moment to swig from what ever fluid that fills it. Aureth's question has her looking his way, and then back towards Darren.

Darren glances over to Aureth, and shakes his head a little. "I haven't personally, no," he admits. "But it is something I'm willing to do. The truth is? Up until a few weeks ago, I thought the elves would fix everything. They didn't. That failed, I'll be the first to admit that. I don't think they ever had any intention of doing that, but that's besides the point. So if going to her Shrine and standing around there praying to her will make her listen? Then I'll do that personally."

Aureth checked charm + performance against difficulty 15, resulting in 26, 11 higher than the difficulty.

"The Queen of Endings, she who is worshipped by the Nox'Alfar -- whom she calls her children in so many words -- whose altar stands in the throne of the Lost," Aureth says. He looks remarkably nonchalant, lounging there on that bench. Only the tightness of his jaw and the tension riveted into his shoulders suggests how much internal fear he obscures as he throws this out there in a public crowd. He pitches his voice to carry, filling his lungs to let it echo. "She told me her children are safe, the pale lady on her throne of bones," he says. He smiles. "Too bad we don't get to talk to them anymore. Wait, why was that again? Prince Darren? Would you like to explain that to us one more time?"

Merek stands up after a moment, and then just holds up his hands. He shakes his head a bit, "I swear, we'll all end with the Inquisiton storming in and just pulling us /all/ into the House of Questions at this point." He then sighs, and looks like he is about to leave, moving to settle by the door.

Tristram peers at Aureth carefully, curiously.

    Julea gives Merek a peculiar look at his words, but her attention doesn't stray long from the discussion at hand. "A lot of mistakes have been made, not just by one person that brings us to the point we're at now. We are very much human in that we tend to fuck up. Though perhaps, some people like myself more than others."

Darren turns to look at Aureth directly, studying the man. He keeps a relatively neutral face, his lips pursing into a thoughtful line before he nods his head. "Sure, if that's what you want," he lifts his shoulder. "Prince Anze sent a letter to Lorelei, that she deemed threatening. She came and demanded he be punished for his actions. The punishment repeatedly changed throughout the conversation. First, she wanted his hand. Then three fingers. Then, his penis. Then, she wanted him to duel to the death, where she admitted she would use magic against him. Then, she offered Norever to duel. She would not accept allowing Anze a champion, which is his right by the Gods' law. She then said she wanted all of his blood. She then said she wanted something carved into him," he shrugs, "I agreed to him being carved. I believe they were going to carve the Nox'alfar symbol for cock on his cheek. When I said I would accept him being carved up, she opened a magical portal in the air and walked out with her brother, Norever." He lifts his shoulder. "Anze fucked up, I will admit that. I make no excuses for his behavior. I have punished him."

Straightening from his seat, Jeremiah holds up a staying hand to Merek: "Please," he begins, firm and harsh--his first words since sitting. "Do not say such things idly, or -foolishly-, please. That reeks of inciting a panic," he calls, moving to settle down again.

Donella says something to Alis aside about volunteering, and slides from her seat.

Sparte continues to hang out in the back of the crowd, his Iron Guard armor all shiny and mostly worn correctly. Given his continued smiles it is becoming clear he isn't actually paying attention to anything being said. Oh well.

Donella has left the Gallery Benches.

6 Thrax Guards leaves, following Donella.

Alis gives Donella a rueful sort of smile as they speak quietly and then she stands.

Merek turns to look towards Jeremiah, "... My words reek of inciting a panic, while everyone casually explaining these things when most the entire world hasn't accepted it exists isn't doing the same?" He listens to Darren, and bites his lip, just shaking his head a bit, while he rubs his face. He moves to sit back down while he listens to the rest.

Silas casts his gaze Sparte's way and gives him an acknowledging nod, goofy smile or not.

Silas also grunts at Merek. "The Inquisition isn't coming."

    Another more pointed look to Merek, and then Julea takes a sip from her flask again, this time a little more than the last. When it is lowered, she takes a moment to savour the taste.

1 Redrain novice guards arrives, following Kieran.

Sparte's eyes are working. Acknowledgement from the crowd is returned with a friendly wave. Then a realization of who it was from turns it into a late salute, and Sparte is left looking a bit sheepish and flustered. At least he seems to be paying more attention to what is going on now.

"Do not--please," Jeremiah repeats quietly and insistently to Merek, settling down once more with a puff of a breath. "The -Crown- is not going to crack down upon the Commoners Assembly," he insists simply. "The presence of three or four members of the High Council--I did lose count, but I believe it was four--gives credence to that," he remarks peacefully.

Merek says, "I just said they weren't going to."

"Mmhmm." Aureth drums his fingers lightly against his thigh. "And now they are gone," he says. He lifts his chin slightly, still seated in his very deliberately casual sprawl. He says, "So, they give us no alaricite, the King stays asleep, the Regency Council stays in power, and we are left to stand alone against the dark. Better hope we find Tolamar Brand and kill him pretty soon."

Merek looks at Jeremiah oddly.

Ferrando listens to Darren and Aureth go back and forth a bit blankly and turns back to Julea. "Apart from the obvious like not collapsing into total anarchy, isn't the King literally the most important thing we should be worrying about, though? Clearly it's not simple if we haven't been able to do it for over a year, and I didn't get even half of what they said said right there anyway so I have no doubt it's actually incredibly fucking complicated. But right at the beginning, you said the Rex-whatevers have been playing us, getting us to make mistakes and fight against each other and whatever for a long time now. Well, didn't everything all -start- with the King and a bunch of the high lords coming back dead? Whoever's been after us, that's where they started. That's where they thought their big first surprise attack would hit the hardest. The Compact doesn't run effectively without a king or a queen. The Regent wasn't that great, but at least it was his half-sister. Now it's more like nobody's /really/ in charge anymore. So it seems to me the best way to turn it around is to recover from that first blow as much as we can. We can't bring the lost high lords back, obviously, but the King isn't lost. Not yet. We get His Majesty back and we've at least clawed something back out of all this and maybe that's what we build off of. It's got to start somewhere."

"The point isn't what happened. We can dwell on the past and missed opportunities. You can be angry at Prince Anze. You can be angry at me. I will accept your anger and I will use it to drive me forward and find alternatives," Darren says after, "But if you were expecting the elves to be an answer to all your problems? They weren't ever going to be. No one is going to wave a magic wand and fix what's wrong. The elves weren't going to drop off a hundred thousand alarcite weapons and skip off into the daisies with us. They weren't even going to help us fight the Bringers. They told us so themselves," he lifts his shoulder in a shrug. "And considering people asked and were repeatedly denied an answer about the King? I doubt they were going to wake him up. They said the Teind would protect us all from the Silence, too," he looks directly at Aureth, "And you know as well as I do, that that was a lie. But we can fight this. We can find the King's soul. We can make things better. But we can't do that without your help. Every single one of you. Your voices are important, even if you don't think they are."

"The Teind wasn't actually a lie... Not in full, at least according to Princess Dawn," Merek states, "It just wasn't meant to stop all the Bringers," he offers to Darren.

"What is the Inquisition going to arrest us for? Talking about one of the /lost gods/ of our own Pantheon?" Aleksei says with a snort. He exhales a slow sigh at Aureth's words, mouth twisting into a frown. "It wasn't a lie," he agrees with Merek. "It just wasn't enough to stop /all/ of it. But we'd all be pretty dead now if we hadn't done it."

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Tristram before departing.

"This argument is stupid," Garza finally speaks up, straightening and putting out his cigarillo against the sole of his boot. "Elves ain't here. King is not awake. "Debate the stupid Teind all they want? It ain't changing the facts. We didn't die then, whatever, unless we quit bitching and actually come together? We're certainly gonna die now." He shrugs.

Joscelin has joined the Gallery Benches.

    There might be another odd look towards Merek from Julea, but her gaze doesn't linger, and her focus returns to the speakers, addressing Ferrando first. "I don't disagree with you. But I don't think we should be trying to awaken him at the exclusion of everything else. I will see about talking to some of the Scholars and the Faith. It might be we can arrange something and petition the Queen of Endings. I don't know, I'm shit with some of this stuff, but there's got to people out there that know more than I do." She says, and there's a pause, and she listens to others speak, nodding to Darren and then to Garza too.

Aleksei reluctantly -- grudgingly -- lifts his voice to admit, "Some people are -- working on a thing," in regards to petitioning the Queen of Endings.

Aureth checked willpower against difficulty 15, resulting in 1, 14 lower than the difficulty.

Aureth stands in a sudden shift of weight. His features have gone pale, washed out beneath the golden fall of his hair. His pale eyes blaze. "If you would seek answers from the /Queen/, you must /own/ where you stand, Highness. With the elves. With the Teind. With the people. The gods do not want lies and justifications. The Queen of Endings is not interested in bullshit. If the gods want anything it's truth. The inner truth of your heart, the deep down dark ugly midnight truth you whisper to yourself in the dark, and even then, she's probably not interested." Good god who died and made him Dominus. Someone should make him sit down.

    "Oh?" Julea says, her attention quickly going towards Aleksei, "That is good- is it something you can speak more of here? And is it something you need help with?"

Kieran slips into the court and stands near the back to watch his brother speak to the common rabble.

"The Inquisition isn't going to arrest anybody," Darren remarks, and then shrugs his shoulders to Merek. "I'm not going to debate what Princess Dawn said. If you want to know? Read the scholar's minutes of the Assembly. But the Bringers are not the Silence. They are not the same thing. The Teind was supposed to protect us from the Silence and it didn't. And all we can do now is try to figure out how to stop that. And deal with the threat of the Bringers, as well," he looks over the crowd, before settling onto Aureth. "I /have/ owned where I stand. I voted against the Teind. I would do it again, time and time again. I own where I stand with the elves. I will take /all/ of that blame if that is what you want. But I will take the blame, and I will use it to propel me forward. If you want to move forward with me? Please. Do that. If you don't, that's okay too."

Dominique has left the Gallery Benches.

"Nope!" Aleksei says to the first question. "And -- nope, holy gods, Aureth, come on--" His gaze flits between Aureth and Darren as he sinks lower in his seat, gaze lifting to the ceiling.

Jeremiah scribes out what Aureth declares in shorthand, lifting his attention up to Aureth's fiery address to Darren: he flicks his attention that way, then. He approvingly nods to Aureth, quietly unmoved by Darren's words, on the edge of speaking himself. "It's the purpose of this Assembly, Aleksei--and I daresay The Sentinel would speak agree, if perhaps not the exact words."

He glances to Tristram, then speaks quietly his way.

The flicker of Aureth's gaze falls to Aleksei. His jaw works for a moment. Slowly, he sits down. He lets his elbow rest across his knee and sits tense and perched on the bench for a moment, his shoulders taut, his gaze pale and stark. He is not acting very much like the lazy weasel he most ordinarily acts like. "You are straight up lying about the Teind, and I'm not sure why," he says, his tone pleasant, as he continues to watch Darren. "It doesn't incline me to trust anything else coming out of your mouth, for some reason."

Ferrando smiles appreciately at Julea. "Thank you for listening," he says politely before sitting down. Apparently he just wanted to get the King business off his chest. Not having a King (or Queen) is really weird! It's the only system of federal government he's ever known.

Tristram raises his hand. He's really good at that. He did it a whole lot at the long Assembly bit. As a noble, he doesn't seem to want to interrupt, and isn't sure whether he's allowed to speak, but his hand-raising skills are second to none!

"What am I lying about?" Darren asks Aureth, raising a brow. "Please. Educate me. The Archscholar sent me a letter that the Teind did not work as intended. That it did not stop the Silence. It stopped the Bringers from reproducing on our lands. Where am I mistaken?"

    Thinking the hand raising is a request for a drink, Julea is more than happy to oblige, coming away from the Judges Bench, she offers Tristram her flask. "Here. It's thirsty work. And sometimes a whiskey or three is needed."

Tristram smiles and takes a drink, but says to Julea, "I was actually requesting permission to speak, since I heard we were welcome to attend but were asked to not interrupt the commoners. I'll take this as a yes!"

"It prevented the Silence from occurring," Aureth enunciates each syllable carefully. "Then. It is still coming. Now. But before these people, you would pretend it did nothing?" He flips his wrist. "Because you were against it in the first place! Of course. Tell us how wonderfully right you are about it all. About the Teind, which totally didn't do anything or prevent us all from dying horribly by becoming nothingness! About the Nox, who would never have helped us anyway! Please. /Do go on/."

"Once Aureth and the High Prince Darren are finished, we'll call upon you, your highness--I assure you. I do think Aureth's words deserve the full merit of being heard out--delivered so publicly, it would be unkind and disrespectful to the High Prince to not be given every opportunity to address them," Jeremiah remarks to Tristram; "Unless you've more to add for either side?" he inquires, looking questioningly then to Aureth-and-Darren's back-and-forth.

Tristram stands, looking to Aureth curiously. "Sir--I'm afraid I don't know your name. Many nobles are investigating various things that are going on. One of my flaws in investigating these things--I can't speak to other nobles--is that the commons know a great deal, but I for one have few contacts amongst them, and I don't really know how to ask. It seems to me that you know a great deal about the Teind, the Lost Goddess, and have some ideas about how performing it helped us--I found nothing that would indicate it did--and some ideas about how to speak with the Lost Goddess. In fact it appears that you've got a lot of knowledge about such things. Could you tell us how you have this information? And maybe you have some suggestions as to how to solve it?"

Tristram says, "You've made quite a few claims, but, sir, I have no way of telling whether or not you're full of shit."

    "Well, of course, speak. Though you might need to shout a little- or wait. The whiskey will help with that." Julea lingers near Tristram for now, eyes going to Darren and Aureth. "It didn't do nothing, but it did not do what was expected, and from I understand, what we were told."

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Julea before departing.

"So the Teind stopped the Silence, and yet didn't stop the Silence?" Darren tips his head to Aureth. "You can treat me like an idiot, but clearly you have information that you aren't sharing with the rest of the group. I am not declaring I was right or wrong. I am repeating what I was told by the Archscholar. That the Teind did not protect us from the Silence. If that is wrong? Then again, I ask for you not to treat me like a pompous prick, but enlighten me on the truth that you know."

"The Queen of Endings told me," Aureth says distantly, looking off at nothing, in the distance. "Though it was independently confirmed by a princess." He shrugs. "If nobility is required to know things, I can say that much. I'd prefer to keep her privacy, though."

Merek takes a long drink from his whiskey. In fact, he swallows the whole thing in one firm motion, until he starts to cough from it, and then wipes his mouth. "I might need a couple more of these," he admits.

"What did the Queen of Endings /tell/ you?" Darren chuckles, shaking his head. "Because I still am not sure what you are trying to say. The Silence was stopped, and yet now it still comes?"

Tristram says, "If you can talk to her, maybe you could ask her how to wake the King. Because, well, I'll be down on my knees praying with everyone else if it'll work, though I'd appreciate a direct answer every now and again. If she isn't in the mood for bullshit, perhaps she can tell us what she wants from us."

Kieran chuckles a bit, repeating what his brother said, "Pompous prick." Then he chimes in to ask Aureth, "I hear she loves jokes."

Alis glances over at her cousin, and at Darren, and then at Aureth. She's saying nothing so far, but intently watching the interplay to see and hear what happens. She'll hold Squee though, so he doesn't get hurt! A clucking sound is made, in case the Squirrel is hiding nearby. She'll protect you, little buddy. Just in case shit goes south.

Stepping into the area at a leisurely pace, Valerius has a warm smile on his face. That fades, immediately, upon hearing the heated words being thrown around, but it's quickly replaced with one of open amusement. Ignoring the group in the gallery for the moment, he makes his way towards the liquor table, pours himself a glass, and /then/ moves to join them.

Valerius has joined the Gallery Benches.

Joscelin watches Aureth, focused, eyes never leaving him as he speaks so adamantly.

Bianca has left the Gallery Benches.

2 House Wyrmguard Guards have been dismissed.

Bianca has joined the Gallery Benches.

"I was told--as many were, at the Vigil of the Sentinel--the Teind stopped the -Silence-, which is to say the end of -all- life. It did not -stop- the spreading of a plague, the blight--that what we believed was the Silence was instead three separate plagues, the worst of which would have destroyed...existence."

It's bewildered to Jeremiah, but he produces it quietly. "This Princess Dawn Grayson said before many of us, sworn to the Sentinel under Archlector Avary's guidance--"

"You and I spoke shortly after at the same event, Prince Darren," he offers with a quiet reminded. "I am not -sure- when you arrived, but what I have heard from Aureth confirms -much- of what was said there, and what I have heard from Aureth -agrees- with much of what I was told happened as the Elves left Arx," he comments quietly. "Though I'm afraid Calandra Whisper isn't here to confirm that, so I will not lean too highly on that understanding."

Aureth's gaze narrows distinctly where he sits, but he considers for a long moment before he speaks again. His voice is much milder, quieter, as he says: "It was stopped. It now comes again. I too find myself often confounded by the linearity of time."

Tristram looks at Aureth, concerned. "But can you speak to the Queen of Endings and see what she wants in return for Auric's awakening?"

Darren looks to Jeremiah, and nods slightly. "I see. I was not there at the Vigil when Princess Dawn spoke. I can only go on what I was told. I received a message from Archscholar Aldwin, that said someone had a vision where the Goddess Death spoke to them, and she said the Silence still comes for us. If the Teind stopped it for a moment in time? Fantastic. It is still, apparently, coming," Darren nods over to Aureth. "Can we move on, then? I am not insulting you, sir."

Leta scratches her neck and tugs at the collar of her heavy padded garment. And then, looking up, she scrunches her face rather fiercely, "Aye, but - I mean, just 'cause you take some herbs for some pox or something, doesn't mean you won't catch it agan, does it?" she sniffs, and shifts uncomfortably, turning to Jeremiah with a rather odd look on her face, turning just a little paler and uncomfortable, "What, three plagues? Like three Lost Gods, and them three evil wizard kings and all that?"

Aureth continues to speak quietly; he continues to look off into the middle distance, as though he sees something that is not in the room, not among the people who are with him. "I do not decide how the Queen of Endings shall speak."

"Maybe the word 'delayed' might be helpful?" Aleksei says, voice a bit thin. "The Silence was /about to happen/. The Teind knocked it back -- so that we didn't all die then -- and made it so that they can't make any more Bringers than they already have. Now we have to kill Tolomar Brand to stop it for good." He spreads his hands: the end. Something in Darren's words -- probably about the letter he got from Aldwin -- has a laugh suddenly escaping him.

Tristram sits back down.

    "I was told Silence is already here." Julea says, her words a touch quieter as she tries to keep track of the back and forth and the flow of conversations. Hr gaze lingers briefly on Darren and eventually she nods at Aleksei's words. "But the main point is we still face a threat. And shit has happened, and some people, multiple people may of fucked up. But we still have to try deal with it now."

Kieran looks to Leta and focuses on her for a moment, as though making a mental note then looks to the recently arrived Valerius. The prince grins and moves to greet his distant cousin.

"Duke Bisland's armies will hopefully destroy Tolamar Brand's forces, but I have been working to make sure the city is properly prepared to defend itself if necessary," Silas adds to the conversation. "Though I would really appreciate it if we didn't have an immediate crisis every other week to attend to, in lieu of this. But that's just me venting."

"Thank you for the clarification, Aleksei. I am glad the Teind momentarily delayed the Silence. I still would not have voted for it," Darren shrugs his shoulders. "That is /my/ choice. I wanted more answers. I want to move /forward/. If others want to constantly look backwards? That is fine." He looks back to Aureth, and dips his head to the man. "I'm sorry if you think I was lying. I was going off of what I was told. If that information is incorrect? Then it is. I was not privy to what the Goddess told you, sir. And I apologize if you think I'm blatantly lying. I accept that I was not completely informed. Unfortunately, the Archscholar did not provide me with your name for me to seek you out."

Aureth shrugs without saying anything. All of this being a blatant public shitstirrer may have exhausted him. It is possible that he is trying to figure out what has happened to him and how in the world this has become his life; this meta, at least, is suggested by the way he rubs at the bridge of his nose.

"I am afraid I barely follow all this--it confuses me, mostly--perhaps due to an endless supply of misinformation, changing facts, and shifting perception," Jeremiah allows to Leta quietly, nodding gratefully to Aleksei.

"No, it would be wonderful," Jeremiah agrees Silas's way quietly. "But such is governance, I am beginning to understand."

He clears his throat at Darren's latest words, looking between he and Aureth: "Some statements begin to tread towards unproductive, please," he remarks politely--guidingly more than chidingly, a note of a caretaker to him.

Aureth has left the Gallery Benches.

Ugarte have been dismissed.

Aureth has joined the Gallery Benches.

    "Alright. Think it is good that people are getting a chance to air their concerns and answer questions. But there are others here who haven't had a chance to speak, are there any other questions? Issues that people want to bring up? Ideas they have on how they can help?" Julea asks, moving back towards the Judges bench and drawing to tip toes as she addresses the room.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Valerius before departing.

Ferrando stands up again. "Where did your festival crown go?" he asks curiously.

And, following a messenger somehow managing to get his note to the Thraxian Prince, Valerius rises from his seat, manages to stumble briefly--but somehow not bump into anyone in the process--and make his way towards the door, gone just as swiftly as he came. Of note, that drink he poured and the glass that holds it goes with him.

He's been pretty silent this whole time, staying back by the entrance, leaning on the wall and crossing his thick arms over his thicker chest. Jayeth prefers to be a jovial sort, but this meeting has killed any sense of that mood. "Well." he speaks up towards Silas with a sigh and a shake of his head, his voice loud and deep, "I don't have any questins' mostly because I don't rightly understand half of what was said: this talk of lost gods and silences ... I'm a simple man. But. I do know there be these folks called Bringers that need some steel stuck through them, and so, I'll make an offer. For any commoner who is needin' their armor fixed up and beatin' into better shape, I'll do it-- no commission over the cost. Maybe it'll keep you alive while you are stickin' steel into those folk that need steel stuck in 'em. If'n you don't have armor at all, I'll fix ya up with no profit neither, if yer gonna help defend Arx." With that, the big smith goes quiet again.

Ferrando quickly sits back down before Julea picks up his gauntlet off the floor and chucks it at him.

Valerius has left the Gallery Benches.

Silas looks approvingly at Jayeth when he pipes up with his offer. "You have your priorities right. Thank you, Master Black."

It seems that the council has been going on for some time by the moment when Nathaniel arrives. Mumbling some kind of vague apology to someone near the outskirts, he nudges in closer, the better to take a look at the assembly. He squints skeptically, taking in the faces.

    "I think I might have it back at home? I can't remember. But it was a very beautiful crown. Was an honour to be something of a princess for a few hours." The grin that Julea gives Ferrando is a broad one, and there's a dimple in her right cheek. Jayeth's announcement seems her bringing her hands together, giving him a quick clap. "That is good news. I am to understand a number of Houses will be providing funds and support towards ensuring such, so it might be worth approaching them to further fund and support this."

"I may take you up on that--I've neither skill nor ability, but I'd rather not find myself caught unprepared and scrambling if there -is- a siege," Jeremiah calls to Jayeth approvingly. "But it might do well if you provided us with your -name-, for those of us--like myself--unaware," he reasons.

Fortunato has joined the Gallery Benches.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Julea before departing.

Joscelin gives Jeremiah a funny look. "I will make it a point to send you the new members' roster as it's updated, Messere Arvani; he is in our Guild." Her eyes glitter with good humor.

"Oh. Right." Jayeth laughs: its a loud, booming sound that is felt almost as much as its heard, "Name's Jayeth Black. You can find me at the Hammer Down."

Garza pushes to his feet and makes his way to Julea. He leans in, to whisper something to her, before brushing his hand against her arm. With his thumbs hooked on his belt, the sellsword continues on his way out of the court.

Costas raises his hand, almost reluctantly at this point.

Equal (good) humor is instantly returned to Joscelin: "And yet, Guildmaster, I am afraid to inform you that you--lamentably--did not remember to include this month's sketch portfolio of all the members--having never seen his face, I would have needed to wait for the -next- month," Jeremiah remarks pleasantly, nodding eagerly to Jayeth. "A pleasure--a dependable name for a smith, I imagine."

Leta settles down after a very spare nod in Jeremiah's direction, and just sits there, quietly brooding over whatever unsettling thoughts. She looks to Jayeth thoughtfully and rubs her hands across her knees. Then she starts to stand as well.

    Julea touches her hand to Garza's hip, a small nod given to the sellsword and what ever he whispered. And then her focus returns back to the room. Picking out Costas' raised hand, she calls out, asking him. "Wanting a Whiskey or a chance to speak?"

Joscelin gestures to Jayeth. "He's the big one that works armor. The other big one works weapons." She grins, cheeky, at Jeremiah.

"I've got my own whiskey, thank you Miss Julea." Costas waves his flask lightly and then, since it's out, has a quick nip.

Garza has left the Gallery Benches.

Aureth has left the Gallery Benches.

Mailys nudges Costas, "Give me a drink before you put it away." That is all Mailys says as she tilts her head to listen to him.

    Julea can't help but bring her own flask up to her lips for a sip, before she gestures at Costas. "Good, then speak when you're ready."

Nathaniel glances aside at Joscelin, before looking at Julea, with a brief and passing sort of smile that stretches one of the scars on his cheek awkwardly. "Well, if whiskey's on offer," he drawls, gesturing vaguely with one hand. "I'm a willing recipient."

"Well." Costas mutters as he stands, handing his flask off to Mailys and then rubbing at the back of his head with a callused palm. "This is a little awkward." The leather-clad rogue pauses a moment to cast a somewhat apologetic look in Felix's direction before going on.

"Said it last time and here I am again. When are we getting them Knights of Solace out of the Lower?" One eyebrow reaches for his stubbled hairline. "Supposedly they keeping the peace but since the last time I asked now we got 'em starting bar brawls with the Iron Guard. Sure some folk made some nice words about being sorry over it but that don't un-punch no one and it don't fix none of Aureth's tables." He looks over his shoulder at the man, posing the rhetorical, "Did you get reimbursed for that, by the way?".

"Moreover if you happen to live in a palace you might have missed that we had a riot just a bit back. Not a single one of them Knights to be found. Just a handful of Iron Guard on they backs with no commanding officer save a blue-blood waving they sword about. If the Lady General Calypso had not shown up to take control of the situation, there would have been a great deal more blood."

"Now, I hear there's some rumbling going round about forming a sort of Lower Guard, drawn from the ranks of common folk." A pause to look round the assembly before going on. "I hear the idea's got the support of some of the leading families in the borough. Common protectors for Common folk. The kind that know, for instance, just how bad an idea it is to start waving your sword around in the face of a growing mob. That know well enough to pick out the troublemaker whipping up the crowd rather than kicking the hornets nest with they chests puffed out." His eyes fall on Julea and Jeremiah. "I don't know if this is part of the Iron Guard's plan here. That would be swell to hear." He waves the piece of paper he'd been handed by Silas. "But I'd like to know if this has been brought up to the Common Council and if so what's the deal, eh?"

"Ah, no, no reimbursement. The Faith has other problems at the moment, one assumes." Aureth puts this forward almost humbly after his earlier pyrotechnics.

"A plan?" Sparte blinks a few seconds before realizing he said that out loud. Ears reddening he tries to just look off into the distance and not make eye contact for a little while.

    Julea brings one of her hands to her lips, wiping away the excess whiskey before she moves to the benches and offers her flask out at arms length to Nathaniel. "I'll admit, I've not heard anything about this Lower Guard.. curious to learn more?"

Merek looks to Silas for a moment, with a thoughtful chuckle, "I'm glad I wasn't one of the ones with my sword out," he states. He then turns his gaze forward, "... I'm helping with the recruitment of people from the Lower Boroughs, but I think the Lord Commander might know well more," he adds after a moment.

Whisper, a Snowy Owl arrives, following Killian.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Joscelin before departing.

"It has not been brought before either Common Councilor until this moment--though, if it has been before Silas, I would see him -on- the Common Council, so it is a start," Jeremiah remarks--from his tone, he's quite approving of the suggestion from Costas.

"A clever thought--indeed, I am sure many feel as if being granted more -minders- is no solution to the Lower Boroughs problems; this is an excellent compromise, and a solution that may solve problems and -not- create others." Jeremiah looks towards Silas, Darren, and Alis--mostly Silas, however, shrewd and assessing.

Nathaniel might have been expecting something like table service -- he's surprised to find a flask, instead of a cup. He looks around, squinting thoughtfully, before he shrugs and accepts the flask. He swings once from it, nodding with silent gratitude towards Julea before he passes it back. He scratches at his chin, listening attentively to the ongoing discussion.

Silas sighs before he decides to speak. "Princess Serafine suggested the idea of Lower Guard to me and I rejected it. It feels more like segregating the guard, keeping the current defunct culture in place, and waiting for a different kind of corruption to crop up instead. I'd much rather the Lower Borough join the Iron Guard and I assign them to patrol the Lower Boroughs; essentially functioning as the same thing but making sure I have men willing to work together... instead of apart." He rubs at his face. "There's is a definite trust issue with the Iron Guard when it comes to the commons, but that isn't the solution. You would still distrust us."

Felix lifts a brow at Costas and lifts his broad shoulders in a shrug. "That question has already been answered, Goodman Voducce. If it was your intention to voice a complaint, then do so. Perhaps form your words and opinions that doesn't imply at first that you don't want us there in the Lowers and then in the same breath condemn us for not being there when the riots broke out." The large smith gives a light wave of his hand at him and offers a broad smile. "If you could be clear about what you would like us to do, then I'm sure it will be taken under advisement and would be far less awkward."

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Darren before departing.

Mailys acepts the flask from Costas and brings it to her lips for a couple drinks. It is done is easy succession. Another drink is taken before Mailys hands it back to him. She does not seem inclined to weigh in on anything.

Aureth has joined the Gallery Benches.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Darren before departing.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Darren before departing.

As the conversation turns to matters of policing, Leta rubs at her face, covers her mouth for a moment, and begins sidling towards the exit.

Kieran moves for the exit as well, having heard enough interesting tidbits for an evening.

1 Redrain novice guards leaves, following Kieran.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Ferrando before departing.

Darren rises from his seat, offering a warm smile to Aleksei. He murmurs one last thing to him before heading towards the exit quietly.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Ferrando before departing.

"As for the Knights of Solace, they will continue to patrol until our recruitment efforts have success. We lost a third of our men. The scuffle is regrettable, but likely the result of high tensions and fatigued men. They have been punished with paydocks - can't say how the Knights were punished, but I'm not sure that's relevant." Silas cants his head thoughtfully.

Darren has left the Gallery Benches.

Fuzzy Wuzzy, Squee, the Flying Squirrel leave, following Darren.

"I do not think there was any implication that the Lower Guard were not a -part- of the Iron Guard, at least not in the proposal as I understood it," Jeremiah remarks consideringly to Silas--the crowd is considered, but Julea and Silas in particular--Darren(until he's gone) and Alis given less focus, but more than most still.

"I wouldn't be willing to suggest something -outside- that command structure myself, simply that it exist as an obvious -part- of the Iron Guard as it stands--an implementation and utilization of men and women you recruit and already have at your disposal is what I understood it to be, and in that it still strikes me as...useful. Though your concerns about corruption are noted and correct, Silas," he does agree.

Leta has left the Gallery Benches.

Whisper, a Snowy Owl leaves, following Killian.

Silas sighs. "I want my men to work together. If they work together, they trust each other more readily, and hopefully there can be better understanding overall. I am going to assign citizens of the Borough to patrol the Borough - moreso than before - because it makes more logical sense as well. They just... won't have their own band name: they'll be the Iron Guard along with everyone else in it."

"That sort of assumption that the folk of the Lower can't do as good or a better job as they that's been the boot on they necks is a big part of why you ain't trusted." Costas remarks to Silas, shrugging. "You can recruit all the folk form the Lower you want -into- the Guard and all they will ever be seen as is turncoats who want to the foot inside that boot." Then turning his eyes to Felix he scratches his stubbled chin as he answers. "If it weren't clear my complaints are the starting fights which they shouldn't be doing and the not stopping fights which they -should- be doing. And what I'd like is to see them gone." Returning his attention to Jeremiah he waves a leather-wrapped hand up near his temple. "Just wanted to get all that out there 'for the record' as they say. Don't worry, I get how it really works, just doing my part to play along in the theatre."

"Now, I'm not an expert on Guard-this-kind or Guard-the-other," Nathaniel says, finally breaking his silence. He gestures with one hand, the other palm flat. "I've just blown into town some short while ago. So maybe I'm misunderstand what's being discussed. But the way I see it, with rumors of war in the air, doesn't it make sense to get all the men under arms you can, the better to defend the city from a siege?"

Merek takes a moment, then he stands up, and shakes his head. "No man should be made to feel less, wherever those men are from... Men from the Lower Boroughs saved my life once, all men deserve a chance. And many of them don't live there just because they /want/ to. I can promise you that I'll make sure all are treated the same, as much as I'm able, even if I'm just a simple Guardsman myself. You were one of those that saved my life, if I recall right? Thank you."

Merek checked charm + diplomacy against difficulty 15, resulting in 29, 14 higher than the difficulty.

    Julea tucks away the flask of whiskey back into her pack and picks up her hat from where it had been laid to rest atop the judges bench. She moves over towards Jeremiah, speaking briefly with him, before addressing the room. "Unfortunately I'm going to have to go- but should any of you wish to speak with me further on any of these issues or even entirely new ones, just let me know."

"Part of my position as Common Councilor, I am discovering, Silas--well."

A pause. "We should discuss it later, please," he requests of Silas, offering a few quiet words back to Julea.

Costas squints at Merek for a moment before recognition hits, and then a good-natured smile settles onto his leathery mug. "Ah yeah.. How's the back healing, eh? Nice scar I bet."

Silas gestures to Costas. "No, you won't be, and that's not what I said. I said you won't trust us, nothing about how well you'd do. That's the problem. The culture needs to change: commoners and nobles need to change." He shakes his head, but doesn't seem compelled to speak further on it.

Joscelin gives Silas a funny look. "Silas. You're a Commoner as well. What would you suggest?"

"Which the instigators have been punished for, Costas," Felix replies calmly, eying the man. "And as someone from the slums of Maelstrom myself, that was a minor scuffle. If there are damages to be paid, then myself or someone else from the Knights of Solace will pay them." Again he nods his head to the man. "We realize that we are going outside of our normal duties, but we are there to help how we can. If you want us gone, show overwhelming support for the Iron Guard so that their numbers are replenished enough to take over those duties again. The solution is simple, Master Voducce."

"If I asked for damages every time somebody scuffed up the Murder, I would be a laughingstock," Aureth pitches, lifting his head from his hands, where it has apparently been resting, noticeably, for the last minute or so.

"Well enough," Merek tells Costas, while he chuckles a bit, then he dips a small nod. He then smooths out his Iron Guard cloak, and considers, "I'd be honered to have any man willing to put on the cloak for the sake of our city. We serve the people, and... That means all of them," he coughs, and settles back, flushing a bit, then to Silas, he states, "Sorry for speaking out of turned." He then relaxes a bit, glass-metal visor watching people as he scratches his stubble.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Ferrando before departing.

Silas looks at Joscelin funnily. "I'm not sure I qualify as a commoner any more. But what I just suggested is what I'd suggest. We have Tolamar Brand to worry about, too, but... one problem at a time. Until they all come at you all at once."

Julea has left the Judges Bench.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Alis before departing.

Alis flips open the message she's given, and furrows a brow at it. "Pardon me, Lady Bianca. If you need me for something, please don't hesitate to send a messive." she murmurs, before standing up to leave the benches and make her way back out.

Alis has left the Gallery Benches.

Bianca nodded to Alis' departure, beginning to gather her things as well.

Costas glances between Silas and Felix, then back toward Jeremiah. "Ain't come here to waste everyone's time arguing when it won't change nothing. Just wanted to make sure that little piece of paper- minutes, right? That that record had a mention about this." He winks at the Councilor and then takes his seat again.

"It's the very purpose of the Common Council--public voice, public perception, public change," Jeremiah agreeably relays to Costas, youthfully energetic, youthfully fervent, youthfully believing. He nods simply...then squints and sighs to Joscelin.

Costas shoots Jeremiah the most cynical thumbs-up he can muster.

"If you ever get the chance to join the Common Council, Joscelin, you'll find that these meetings are the -fun- part. There will -not- be agreement in them, there will -not- be consensus, but there will be change and progress. And, even more importantly, we will give the voiceless a voice, -soon-...though the Council itself does not, not yet, I'm afraid. me. This is the -enjoyable- part of the job," he insists softly, starting to rise after. "Does anyone have anything else they'd like to bring forth?" Louder, addressing the whole.

Bianca rose, quietly excusing herself from the benches and making her way to the exit.

Fortunato has left the Gallery Benches.

"If I receive an invitation, I would accept, messere Arvani, but I will not push my way into something if the invitation is not there," Joscelin responds to the comments given by Jeremiah from her musings at the bench. "I don't expect consensus, I do expect progress and change. If there is no agreement on -anything-, how do those things happen?"

Silas doesn't seem entirely convinced of the 'fun' involved in these proceedings, but shrugs ruefully. "Nothing more to add here."

Merek stands up, and dips a nod to those at the benches, "Take care," he offers. To Silas he salutes, then he shifts his cloak, and makes for the door after a bit.

Bianca has left the Gallery Benches.

Costas raises his eyebrow as he stands, a look of genuine surprise on his face as he suggests to Joscelin. "They happen by cynically exploiting the realities of the political machine and then going to the highest-ranking person you have the ear of?"

Joscelin looks at Costas. And then sighs, flopping back on the bench. "Then what's the point if, if in the end, our voice doesn't matter, rather who has the loudest and that it lands in the right ears?"

Nathaniel chimes in with a dry and knowing chuckle. "Now there's a man who understands the way of the world," he grouses, looking amusedly in Costas's direction.

Merek has left the Gallery Benches.

Costas shakes his head lightly, a good-natured grin pulling his lips back from his teeth. "If that's the way it worked there wouldn't be an us and a them. Gods.. Imagine how topsy-turvy that world would be." He waves one of his rough mitts round. "I mean.. who would make the bread?"

Silas frowns. "It would likely be more productive if we all heard the same things, got the same information, and had the same biases - but we don't. You just have to work through it and hope for the best."

Sparte glances around the assembly, scratching at the side of his nose. He slowly raises his hand, brow furrowed in thought about something he wants to say.

"I will -strive- to ensure it. As I've told the High Lords, I'll eliminate my -own- damn position if it makes something of -worth-," Jeremiah remarks, stepping towards the front, clapping his hands together. "I -do- want to thank you all for your attendance--despite some worries, -change- happens. Change happens because -we- can enact it. I, too, can be cynical--change happens because there are -commoners- here with power, and change happens because I will -loudly-, -endlessly-, constantly bring it before Princesses and Princes and High Lords and High Ladies--Archdukes and Lords and Ministers as well," he remarks loudly and fervently.

"And until they throw us out, Julea and I will both continue to do that. Don't hesitate to contact us, if you need to--or Silas, -or- Joscelin," he remarks, already publicly, tacitly, obviously including them. And that's all he says, at least as far as announcements go.

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