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Lost in Lowtown [Closed]

Harmon Cabot

DAO/DA2 Timeline
(( 22 Firstfall, 35 Dragon, Late Afternoon, Merrill ))

June had warned him about sunset. We should always return before dark she’d told him on more than one occasion, one of those being only a few hours ago. Looking up from beneath the shadows of Lowtown’s buildings, he could tell he had perhaps an hour, maybe even a little more, before the sun sank into the horizon.

Hope buzzed away in the back of his mind, sparking at random objects or people or whatever seemed to catch her attention. It was her diversions that caused Harmon to lose June in the first place. A cart of fresh hay, a flap of fabric with a brilliant pattern, the cry of a small child - Harmon had never known Hope to feel so alive and awake and present, but something about the city had made her almost as attentive as their first few weeks together. Without the walls of the Circle to contain them, though, it was terribly easy to get lost in her curiosity and, eventually, get lost in Lowtown.

“We’ll explore more tomorrow, I promise,” Harmon mumbled under his breath and shook his head to clear some of Hope’s brighter sparks. Those barrels down that alley looked interesting. So interesting. “Right now, we need to find June.” The sparks dimmed only to be replaced by a new kind, one filled less with curiosity and more with something Harmon could best explain as determination.

Harmon wandered more or less in the direction he remembered their home being. He knew he could reach Darktown before night fell, but the thought of navigating the area after sunset made his fingers stiffen and his gaze drift downwards. He would find June in Lowtown: she wouldn’t head home without him in tow, that he could guarantee. So long as he moved in the general direction, he’d bump into her eventually, right?

A strong yank from Hope stopped Harmon dead in his tracks. He blinked. “What was that for?” he mumbled, but no malice tainted his tone, only genuine curiosity. June was nowhere in sight, and he could think of no other reason for Hope to so forcefully pull him out of his thoughts except...except for the elf a few paces ahead of him. He tilted his head to the side. If it wasn’t for that pull, he probably would’ve bumped into her, but Hope didn’t pull on him simply for his own safety.

“Oh!” It clicked, or, at least, Harmon thought he had the right idea now. “Excuse me!” he called out to the elf as he caught up to her. “I’m looking for someone. Perhaps you can help? Her name is June. She has light brown hair and green eyes, and she was probably making a face like this.” Harmon did his best to imitate June’s determined-but-infuriated face, but the best he could do was furrow his eyebrows, frown too deeply, and puff out his cheeks a bit.

“Okay, maybe not quite like that,” Harmon released the expression with a laugh, “but you get the idea. So, have you seen anyone like that around here?”
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Active member
Canon Character
Where was she going? Merrill looked out over the crowded streets and suddenly found herself all but lost within the throng of people. There was a fruit stand that she enjoyed, friendly to elves and with less rotting options littered about than most stalls. For the life of her, she couldn't quite manage to remember where it was. Instead, she wandered the streets and mostly listened to the idle chatter of passersby. Contrary to popular theories, Merrill was not blissfully unaware of the world around her when she wandered. Between the people around her and the occasional tug of the Fade, there was always something to notice. If you had the attention span, which was something actually up for debate when it came to Merrill.

Her eyes wandered from happening to happening. A fishmonger inexplicably holding a trout like a club and menacing a presumed thief, the ever-present patrols of Templars, a minstrel that made her wonder how Nicolette was, the bobbing and weaving of small children playing tag in a street honestly too crowded for it. In the back of her mind, Merril felt something in the Fade that she could not quite define but she found that a surprisingly common occurrence in Kirkwall. She would have dismissed it, and was about to wander onwards she heard a voice call out.

“Excuse me!” A brown haired man with a friendly face approached her, prompting Merrill to point curiously at herself to confirm he meant to talk to her. That question was dealt with as he continued talking. “I’m looking for someone. Perhaps you can help? Her name is June. She has light brown hair and green eyes, and she was probably making a face like this.”

He screwed up his face in a sort of grumbly look that reminded her of Aveline, or Varric after he drank a particularly strong bit of ale. Not quite grumpy, but certainly stern or displeased. People gave Hawke that look sometimes. Merrill, fascinated by the display, returned it for moment.

“Okay, maybe not quite like that,” the man said with a laugh. Merrill gave a bit of a giggle too; he seemed a good fellow. “But you get the idea. So, have you seen anyone like that around here?”

Merrill thought about it for a moment. "Lots of people around here make stern faces," she said chivalry. "It's a Kirkwall speciality! Though I suppose there's only a few places where you friend could be. The Hanged Man has lots of people, there's some market stall that sell shanks and things, and if your friend is tough there's plenty of places to fight and try to be the toughest."

"I'm Merrill,"
she added. "I haven't seen your friend but I'll help you look. No reason to be searching alone, yes?"

Harmon Cabot

DAO/DA2 Timeline
"Lots of people around here make stern faces. It's a Kirkwall speciality!” the elf replied cheerfully.

“So I’ve noticed!” Harmon’s response was just as bright. “It’s made it even harder to find her ever since we got here.”

“Though I suppose there's only a few places where you friend could be. The Hanged Man has lots of people,” the elf suggested, “there's some market stall that sell shanks and things, and if your friend is tough there's plenty of places to fight and try to be the toughest."

“Oh, I don’t think she’d be the type to fight...perhaps.” Harmon shrugged, suddenly uncertain about that aspect of June. Ever since they’d reached Kirkwall, she’d changed. They’d talked about their relationship, worked out how things were going to be now that they were settled in, but the masks June wore were breaking. Perhaps it was the lack of discipline now that she was no longer a Templar, or maybe she wasn’t adjusting to the city. He knew she was hiding the fear and frustration that came with living in a volatile city like Kirkwall - it was a far cry from the comfort of Markham - but they’d come here for a reason, and she was stubborn enough to stick with it no matter how difficult it got. He just wasn’t sure if she’d take out the stress of that on something, or even someone, else.

"I'm Merrill.” The introduction pulled Harmon out of his thoughts. "I haven't seen your friend but I'll help you look. No reason to be searching alone, yes?"

“Right, yes! Thank you! Two pairs of eyes is better than one!” Harmon gave a little bow as he formally introduced himself, “I’m Harmon Cabot. It’s a pleasure to meet you.”

As they made their way through the streets, Harmon felt the little tugs this way and that of Hope distracting him. Finding June was important, but not as important as that sparkling goblet or the child carrying a fresh loaf of bread home. Sometimes she would point his attention at someone that looked reminiscent of June; it never was, though. He shook his head to brush her off for what felt like the eleventh time as he and Merrill moved along through the market and he tried his best to keep the conversation cheery and light.

“Are you from Kirkwall?”
Questions from him, of course. People tended to like talking about themselves. “Do you like it here?” Simple questions, ones she could easily answer while they searched. Her answers would also be easy enough for him to remember even with Hope’s near-constant distraction.

As they wandered along, the streets grew less and less crowded and the alleys more numerous and foreboding. June would’ve scolded him for leaving the safety of obscurity within a crowd, but this was a special day and he was on a very special mission. The sound of shouts and laughter caught his attention just as Hope yanked in the direction of an alley that was a little more open than the others.

“We should check down this way.” Harmon indicated for Merrill to follow him while he made his way into the alley. A small crowd had gathered at the end of it where it opened up even more. The crowd was circled around a pair of men, one already sporting a black eye while the other bounced back on nimble feet. Harmon could see the glint of coins being exchanged as cheers and insults both rung out from the crowd.

“Excuse me.” Harmon tapped the shoulder of a large man off to the side with an outrageous puff of a beard and an even larger mane of dark brown hair tamed only by the strip of leather tying it back. “Have you seen a woman about this tall,” Harmon held his hand a few inches above the top of his own head, “brown hair, green eyes, very serious. She was probably making a face like this.” He scrunched his face up in the same expression he’d shown Merrill earlier.

“As a matter of fact, I did see someone like that.” A big grin spread across the man’s face as he gave Harmon a solid clap on the shoulder before pulling him in and taking a big sniffle of a breath. “You’ve got yourself a tough one, eh? Saw her deck a man twice her size like it was nothin’ - coulda stayed for double-’r-nothin’, but she knocked her winnings out of the ref’s hands and let the crowd scrounge for it while she disappeared. Not exactly sure what her problem is, but it looked like she was headin’ in the direction of the Hanged Man. She’s prob’ly thirsty after a fight like that - y’ should find her and pay for that drink if y’ wanna keep her.”

“Oh! Thank you, sir!” Harmon gave the man a generous hug before jumping back to Merrill. “You’ve no idea how big a help you’ve been!” He turned on his heel, one bouncing step after another. Hope hummed bright and clear in the back of his mind, no longer distracted by the next fight starting behind them. Suddenly he stopped and looked back at his new friend.

“Merrill,” he let out an embarrassed laugh, “I’ve no idea where the Hanged Man is. Would you mind showing me the way?”