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Friends in Low Places [Closed]

Linette Botten

Ferren's Keeper
Staff member
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154
#1
((OOC: Firstfall 2, 9:35, Evening, @Magnus))

As much as stuff stayed the same in Highever, a lot had also changed. There was that whole human not human maybe human not human not-quite-an-alienage that was forming just beyond the South Wall. Fergus, being a big-hearted capital N noble, wanted to do better by these people much as he had the elves in the Highever alienage. Someone didn’t appreciate Fergus’ more magnanimous side and was giving him a huge fuck you in messing with his altrushit.

When Ferren asked Linette to go look around and see what she might see with those overly perceptive eyes of her, she wasn’t exactly going to say no. Even if it hadn’t been Ferren asking, there was very little Linette wouldn’t do for Fergus. If someone was going to mess with his shit, that person was only allowed to be Ferren or her and only in a I drank all your brandy, forgive me bat-bat-the-eyelashes kind of way. Granted, Ferren messed with Fergus’ shit in a whole other way Linette tried not to think too much about unless she was writing about Darren and Marcus.

Linette waited until nighttime to make her way through the gate in the South Wall and into what she had dubbed Lowever. Place looked and smelled even worse up close and personal than it did from afar. People were building places out of whatever was available to them. One house she passed, a small place she wasn’t even sure she could stand up straight inside, appeared to be made of discarded packaging crates and burlap sacks. That wasn’t going to do much to keep a person protected from the heavy winter weather once it set in.

Yeah she could see why Fergus was trying to help these folks. Lin, she might have left them to fend for themselves. She had to learn to survive and she was all the better for it. That wasn’t Fergus’ way though. If she was going to get any kind of idea just what was going on in Lowever, she’d need to go somewhere besides just walking around on the muddied pathways cut between the one stiff breeze from falling over domiciles.

She had been told about a make-shift tavern, Crate and Barrel, located not too far away from the gate into Highever proper. The place was very true to its name. Much like the home Lin walked by on her way further into Lowever, the bar was constructed of discarded crate materials and old ale barrels. She pushed the creaky barely hung on the hinges door open to test her luck and see what she might find inside.
 

Magnus

aka Caethan Farkas Thornecroft
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
8
#2
“Here’s a health—” a big-bellied drunk man sang, raising a crude looking mug in the air, nearly teetering off his barrel seat, “To the king, and a lasting peace!”

A deeper voice sang out loudly in turn, “To faction, an end! To wealth, increase!” He slammed a fat looking purse down upon the haphazardly constructed bar of the tavern, to the delight of the other patrons therein. Despite the small fortune that man in question seemed so content to share, with the downtrodden of the ramshackle establishment, he looked to have recently suffered some obvious misadventure himself. His crudely sewn left brow was a clear indicator that it had been recently split by a hard blow, and much of his exposed skin not already covered in tattoos was covered in fresh contusions.

A number of patrons joined in on the tavern song. “Come, let us drink while we still have breath!”

“For there’s no drinking, after death!” the big-bellied man bellowed sonorously above the rest.

Not to be outdone, Magnus, having received a clattering of sloppily albeit enthusiastically filled mugs from the tavern’s recently come-to-fortune proprietor, all but danced the length of shitty little tavern singing, “And he that will this truth deny—” while handing out the sloshing mugs in question, inclusive of shoving one into the hands of a new arrival.

“Down among the dead men, let those bastards lie!” the patrons sang in imperfect, drunken harmony. Raucous laughter ensued, ere the song repeated anew.

“Welcome, friend!” the swaggering mercenary hailed the newest patron. Despite having taken a number of blows to his person recently, and giving away what was presumably the bulk of his worth, Magnus was inexplicably happy with his lot in life at the current moment. Repurposing wages given to him, by an arrogant nobleman no less, felt like a good way to make amends for having accepted the bastard’s commission in the first place. He wasn’t exactly proud of the circumstances surrounding his arrival in Highever, but then again he hadn’t exactly been given the full story of why he’d been commissioned in the first place.

It wasn’t until after he’d arrived with a few other hired thugs, far more informed than he, that Magnus realized what it was that the noble with an agenda had wanted them to do — stir up as much shit as possible with the poor folk along the South Wall, give Cousland another reason to pull at his own hair. Nobles, always shitting in each other’s pottage—which didn’t usually bother Magnus much, except when he was misinformed about a contract or specifically what his services were being contracted for. He’d no quarrel with small folk, and had no reason to hurt them. Did his best to turn cloak on the other mercs hired when all the damn ruckus ensued, but took a number of licks for doing so.

Yet, despite it all, there he stood, drunk and happy as a clam before the little lady who’d just entered the barely standing tavern. “Come!” he told her, as the other patrons were already on the third verse of the same tune. All too happy were his macabre words as he added, “Drink amongst the dying!” He smiled broadly. Like a sodding idiot.

[OOC: Repurposed an excerpt from the drinking song “Down Among The Dead Men” by John Dyer circa 1700-58 | Drunkard's Dialogue Text: A0522D]
 
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Linette Botten

Ferren's Keeper
Staff member
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154
#3
So yeah… Linette wasn’t sure what she expected when she walked into Ye Olde Crate and Barrel beyond the obvious — more crates, more barrels and shitty ale. She got something alright.

Some taverns, even the makeshift kind, were loud joints where people sang and gave uncomfortable liquor dusted hugs. Those were the type of places Linette tried to avoid. Along with windows and couples, she didn’t do singing or hugs (jug hugs were an obvious exception to such a rule).

Linette preferred the other type of tavern. The type of place where people minded their own shit both literal and figurative. Once again, exceptions to the rule. She was quite the frequent visitor to the Musty Mug in Denerim and that literal shit was often right out there in the open for all to smell. For the most part, though, she liked her taverns much like her men, dark, dirty, and encased in leather. She had yet to find a tavern that hit the trifecta and she was not about to find one now just beyond the South Wall.

What she saw when she entered was a…thing. Not every day did she get to see a man near on as tall as Diago prancing around like the drunkest of peacocks. But there it was along with a happily spoken, “Welcome, friend!” offered in Lin’s direction along with a tankard of whatever go-go juice was being served that night.

“Come!” the tall drunk of swill added,“Drink amongst the dying!”

Lin looked down at the mug somehow feeling if she did swallow down whatever concoction the owner was calling ale she might well wish to be one of the dying the next day. People put some weird stuff on booze when they didn’t want to spend on the real stuff and there was no way there was good real stuff in a place like this when they could barely manage a roof overhead.

Stranger danger and all that, Linette raised the mug and took a sip all the same. Wouldn’t be the first time she put something in her mouth and regretted it the next day.

The mood in the tavern implied a celebration of sorts or at least someone flush with coin. One of those she didn’t give a shit about and the other… Linette was a helpful sort and if someone wanted to rid themselves of coin, she was more than happy to oblige.

Her nose wrinkled as she forced herself to swallow her first sip of her drink. Gritty. That wasn’t good. No one wants texture in their ale, or at least Linette didn’t. “Celebrating something?” she asked her new benefactor.
 

Magnus

aka Caethan Farkas Thornecroft
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
8
#4
Unperceptive to the new arrival’s hesitation where the drink he handed to her was concerned, Magnus joined in, briefly, for another quick refrain of the repetitive taphouse song, his voice booming alongside the big-bellied patron’s baritone in perfectly oblivious disharmony.

“Celebrating something?” she ventured. The proximity of her voice, sounding nearest to him in the midst of the din, seized his attention once more.

“I make it a point to celebrate each and every one of my licks,” he told her, “For every one, a lesson learned.” It was one of Magnus’ favourite sayings, because it applied to more than just fighting. The alternative to fighting wasn’t exactly on his mind in that moment, however. He’d sooner fall asleep on top of someone in his current condition, than show them a particularly good time.

As much as he was enjoying the present atmosphere of the shite tavern, recent events had taken a toll on even him. His energy level, while no less enthusiastic, was visibly waning. “Your timing is perfect,” he told her, “Much as I’m happy to redistribute some ill-gotten gains, that man—” Magnus pointed to the large bellied man, “Has been trying to drink me under the table, er, crate the entire night.” He swayed briefly, but managed to right himself, adding, “And he's succeeding.” Magnus whispered loudly and harshly, “Save me from myself this night and half of those gains are yours.”

He put his hands on his hips afterward, stating, “Fair is fair, I like to believe, under normal circumstances—but he’s clearly got a leg, er, belly up on me.” Magnus pat his flat stomach.

The man overheard. Granted, Magnus’ voice carried—especially when he’d been drinking. Even if it was watered down swill. “Throw in the towel then, you sodding Vint!” the man laughed, patting his champion of beer guts in turn.

“Firstly,” Magnus said, putting a finger in the air and admittedly had trouble keeping it completely still, “We all know there isn’t a towel to be found in this hovel. At least, not one anyone here wants to touch. Or look at, probably.” Some patrons chuckled, others nodded, and a spattering ignored the exchange altogether. “Secondly,” Magnus continued, “Bringing a gut like that to a cups challenge is like bringing a trebuchet to a fist fight!”

The large man waved Magnus off, balking at him, “Bah! You’re a sore loser, Magnus!” ere he returned to his bellowing tune.

Magnus’ response to that was to turn immediately toward the new arrival, telling her as a matter-of-fact, if even with solemn pride, “That is a lie. I am a fantastic loser.” He grinned after, unapologetically so, like the looming idiot he was at the present moment. “Will you… help me find a barrel?” he inquired, leaving out whether or not he wanted to sit on or throw up in one. First impressions, and all that horseshit.
 

Linette Botten

Ferren's Keeper
Staff member
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
154
#5
“I make it a point to celebrate each and every one of my licks.” Interesting choice of words there. Licks could have a whole lot of meanings but given the man’s size, Lin’s gut told her he wasn’t talking about the fun kind. “For every one, a lesson learned. Your timing is perfect. Much as I’m happy to redistribute some ill-gotten gains, that man—” Magnus gestured to the man with the lard barrel for a belly. “Has been trying to drink me under the table, er, crate the entire night.” And doing a pretty good job of it given the not-wind blowing Magnus sails; a point confirmed a moment later, “And he's succeeding.” In a breathy yell whisper that only the verging on drunk could manage, Magnus pleaded, “Save me from myself this night and half of those gains are yours.”

There were some lessons that people needed to learn the hard way in life. Never trust an Antivan if his lips are moving and never get into a drinking contest with the rotund. Big Poppa had taught Lin that lesson. Man had a gut you could balance three tankards on. He was as wide as round and proud of it.

Magnus was certainly getting schooled this night.

Hands upon his hips, he added, “Fair is fair, I like to believe, under normal circumstances—but he’s clearly got a leg, er, belly up on me.” Pat pat went his hand on his a stomach you balance, well not some tankards but something else entirely different.

“Throw in the towel then, you sodding Vint!”, came from the beer-belly gallery.

“Firstly,” Lin’s brow arched waiting on what point Magnus was about to raise along with his finger, “We all know there isn’t a towel to be found in this hovel. At least, not one anyone here wants to touch. Or look at, probably.” Approving, some patrons laughed. “Secondly, Bringing a gut like that to a cups challenge is like bringing a trebuchet to a fist fight!”

“Bah! You’re a sore loser, Magnus!”


Attention diverted beeringer, Magnus focused on Linette, “That is a lie. I am a fantastic loser.” Grinning loud and proud, he asked, “Will you… help me find a barrel?”

Lin was presented with a choice: she could walk away or join the man. Cons of doing so included the possibility of vomit or getting dragged into a bar fight of some sort. Then there was the chance he might try to molest the barrel. Lin had seen that before. Not a pretty sight. There were splinters and tears.

And the pros? He wasn’t half bad to look at and seemed to have a lot of coin he was willing to part with. Loose men were her favorite. And what else was she going to do with her night anyway?

“Alright but I’m not drinking this shit.” Lin lifted the mug, a bit of the ale sloshing over the tankard’s brim. “You want to part with your coin, I’ll help you. Whiskey,” she shouted over her shoulder, “A bottle with the wax seal intact.”

As the fates meant for all this to be, a barrel and two crates were freed up as two patrons, arm and arm decided to take their leave of the joint for what Linette presumed was to be a romantic interlude in the muck. Nothing said romance quite like a hand in the pants after all.

She plopped down atop her crate hoping nary a splinter pierced her pants. Certainly not the type of wood she liked her in ass. Her head quirked toward Belly Bill, “Called you a Vint. You from Tevinter,” she asked. Good to know the type of people coming to visit Lowever.
 
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