The weeks passed by with relative ease. While the bore of political responsibilities consumed much of his time, Emperor—now known as King—Draven found these recent days to be among the best worth living. Deonte and he had resolved the grudge between them. While the dragon still harbored jealousy in the icy chambers of his heart, he had forgiven his bond enough to return home. This was a relief to the monarch for an angered dragon was not exactly the issue he wished to deal with when so many more important matters required attention.
Now that the economy of the ice kingdom had grown more stable under Draven’s rule, he once again enjoyed the lavish wealth of royal living. He wore garments of the most expensive cloths, dined finely, and was revered and respected as a monarch should. Already, his name was whispered in passing, his very presence among the servants alighting more than just rumors of fancy. This was the exact style of living he sought to preserve. But things were now all aligning. Soon, after so much study of the politics of this world, the time would arrive to make advances concerning relations with the neighboring lands. For now, though, something much more imminent needed sorting.
The two people whom he “trusted” with his agenda—the two who had a better understanding of his mind than the others—needed at last to meet. Both Violet and Rat already acted as “advisors” of sorts to him. Of course, the way in which he handled them and his motives for each varied. Nonetheless, he had not properly made an effort to suggest one’s existence to the other. This arranged meeting would act as quite the surprise for them. Or, rather, a surprise for Rat. Violet Saw all, after all.
Speaking of which…
Over these past weeks or however long it had been since the incident at the bar, he had taken to spending much time with the mind reader. He always sought her company under pretense of wishing to discuss political matters. Yet, only Violet Saw the truth of his mind but never seemed to comment upon it much. Draven enjoyed the peace she offered. The walks they shared through the gardens acted much as a temporal escape from his everyday living. Their blossoming relationship was nothing which he acknowledged and were anyone to ask, he’d promptly excuse such conversations as strictly business related.
Rat was a different matter. He seldom ever saw the sleaze and when he did—or, met with him as he couldn’t rightly see the bastard—it strictly was just all business related. Most times, he sent the thief to perform whatever deceitful little errand which only he could delight in. The monarch would be sure to reward him promptly knowing that a bastard like Rat’s loyalty was bought only in gold. And when the good Rat wasn’t assigned to anything of importance, Draven cared little for what illicit or immorally ambiguous thing the thief did so long as it did not interfere with Draven’s own agenda.
He had sent them each a note to their private chambers instructing the servants who delivered it to simply slide it beneath their doors. His message was curtly written and direct with orders merely telling them to adjoin here, in the throne room, at this current hour. Awaiting their arrival, he lounged on his throne content with the security of title which it offered. He wore a black toga laced in gold trimming. This was not at all unusual dress for him; very often he took to styles matching his native attire. One could very well say that his country of origin was similar to our Roman Empire while having some minor mixing of the European Dark Ages…
Draven could not help the bubbling excitement he now felt. He had an idea of how this meeting would occur. And for what thoughts came to mind, it was nothing short of things which he knew would amuse immensely. He sat with growing impatience toying with a bit of fabric between his thumb and forefinger. When the door opened, he saw at once—or perhaps didn’t see—the person who entered. He sat a little straighter leaning forward slightly suggesting his anxiousness. “Ah, there you are,” he greeted with an eager grin. “I have something which I wish to discuss with you but we must wait for the other one to arrive.” He then leaned back in his throne relaxing, the wry smirk never once leaving his face.Character 2
Time went by as it always did, speeding by in rushed blurs, leaving Violet to wonder just what had happened to the weeks. Not that those blurs were anything but crystal clear to her. That was the nice thing about being able to see the future: The moments that make it up happen to her twice, leaving behind a much stronger imprint than they would have otherwise. She’d spent the last few weeks just walking around Hadrian’s Wall, which was her new home. Draven had worked hard to get the ice land built up, and it was looking very nice now, though Violet knew that there would be more renovations to come, even if Draven didn’t know that yet.
Draven was another thing that had changed over the last few weeks. Ever since what had happened at the bar, he’d been changing, little by little. Violet could tell. His thoughts, when he was around her, were subtly different. He knew this, too; deep down, he did. But he wouldn’t admit it to himself, ignoring the facts, and so Violet kept quiet about it. She had long since learned the lesson of what happens when you bring up unpleasant truths about people, and she did not wish to be the source of anyone’s anger, especially not someone as powerful as Draven.
Despite this, they took walks through the garden a few times a week, never saying much. Violet wasn’t one for talking, much preferring the peace and quiet, something that she never really got with hearing everyone’s thoughts. That’s something she liked about this place, though; there were so few people, just her, Draven, Rat—whom she had yet to meet—and some servants, so it was almost like having quiet in her head. So few thoughts to listen to; it was like flicking through radio stations when there’s nothing for miles and miles but fields of wheat, leaving most of the stations in a subdued static.
They wouldn’t be going on one of those walks today, though. Today was time to go and meet Rat. He was a man that had never been mentioned out loud, but Violet had heard the name whispered inside the heads of Draven and the servants, and had gathered much information about him from that, as well as from the future. She didn’t understand why Draven just didn’t tell her about him, or why he hadn’t told Rat about her. But Violet had learned many days ago that Draven was a very odd man with rather strange ways when it came to this sort of thing. He seemed to think it would get him something, doing it this way, though Violet didn’t fully understand what.
She arrived early in the throne room, opening the doors to find Draven sitting on the throne, fiddling with his clothes. Due to spending so much time with him, she as starting to notice things like that, and picking up on the meanings behind them—he was impatient, she could read that, and that was why. Little habits like that didn’t pick up in the mind, being subconscious, and Violet felt some pride in herself at being able to piece the two together, something she hadn’t been able to do a month ago. It was small, but already she was learning. “Ah, there you are,” he said, looking over at her, “I have something I wish to discuss with you but we must wait for the other one to arrive.”
Violet cocked her head to the side, her eyes going blank as she shifted her attention over to the future. She stayed that way for a few seconds, before blinking, coming back to herself. “He’s going to be late,” she stated simply, her expression blank as she walked up closer to him, until she was standing several feet away. The throne room was a rather large room, like most of the rooms in this place. Violet had had to hunt for a small room in the place; she liked the feeling of being closed in. She had grown up living in tight quarters, and she didn’t feel right sleeping in a big room.
She didn’t say anymore after that, though, merely looking vaguely around the room, her wide eyes giving her a rather spacey look. It was a nice room, she would admit. All the rooms were. Draven went out of his way to buy the best for himself. Silence filled the room, but not an awkward one; it was a comfortable silence, a calm quiet between two people who had nothing that needed be said as they waited for the last of their party to show up. Character 3
Rat was running late. He thrust both hands forward and created a massive ice sheet in the air, leaping onto it and employing his Mastery to sort of sail along ten feet above the ground. Some people might have found this thoroughly disconcerting, had they looked up to see ice bridges spontaneously appearing and disappearing over their heads, but there were no ruddy PEOPLE in this ruddy place. The Ice lands were bloody DESERTED. Which really explained why he was late, y'know. If he didn't have to go so bloody far to get the news he wouldn't be so bloody late in returning with it!
He had been down in the Village enjoying a pint, or the dregs of other people's pints that he could lift without anybody seeing. It was a lifestyle suited only to some, and Rat was very well suited to it. Long years of practice. He had been listening for the current Good Word--anything that had to do with Aden of the Barricade. So far the hearsay was as weak as his ale.
But then a stroke of luck! A young woman had started drawling on and on about how INTIMATELY she knew Aden of the Barricade. And while Rat was getting to know said young lady, he suddenly remembered that Kingy Wingy had put forth a summons for this afternoon. Deciding to kill two birds with one stone, he wrapped the girl up like a bloody Boxing Day present and set about returning to the lands of Ice.
She was currently tossed over his shoulder, screaming like a banshee. He didn't care much for the noise, but he figured that her pretty features would liven up the staff and probably please the Sovereign. The Rat gave an odd grimace of a smile, one that was half sneer and half grin. It was all about the King! He jolted the girl a bit cruelly in a swift turn, enjoying the way her scream became a bit hoarser. Well, mostly about the King.
He stopped the ice skating a few moments later and dropped down on the back side of the wall. The cliffs here were impenetrable, so the wall was sort of pointless. As such, it's maintenance was ignored. It was easy to slide through the ruins unnoticed and enter the vaults under the chambers wing of the castle. The smell of rot and mold was unmistakable. He dropped the bag, content to know that this was HIS realm. Haunted catacombs tend to drive off the servants. If she screamed, mores the better. Enforce the image, what.
He loped up and entered the throne room, continuing his forward motion even as he realized that some other individual had beat him there. So this was Violet. He tilted his head and appraised her with chilly calculation. She'd make an average whore, but there was something sort of creepy about those big eyes of hers. Sorry I'm late, guv'nah, he said, Cockney accent cutting through the room like a blade. There was not a drop of sincerity in his voice. He didn't offer up any explanation, because as far as he cared there was no need for explanations. All things in good time.
He gave an arch look to Violet, and that was carefully crafted into his tone. Are we having a party?Character 1 again
The sight of Violet, ever punctual, delighted him. He expected her to arrive on time; the thing about a clairvoyant mind reader is that she knew not how to be late as she saw the exact instance in which something would occur. Or so it seemed. But one would make false assumptions if thinking that he cared only about her punctuality. Rather, one could very rightly say that he was falling in love with her—not in the romantic sense, though, however. There exist varying forms of love, after all.
Draven suddenly stood closing the short distance between them with swift steps. He made a ritualistic gesture with one hand before coming to touch his forehead to hers. In his culture, such was an intimate display shown to a loved person in way of greeting. Most generally, however, it was bestowed by fathers to well beloved daughters…
“He’s going to be late.” The King merely accepted her prophesy knowing this little oracle to herald only truth. He sighed, touched her cheek, and then returned to his throne. Somehow, a late Rat did not surprise him any. The invisible man had attended summons late before. It was nothing, though, which needed punishment. Draven had grown used to Rat’s independence and considered such tolerance a reasonable price in exchange for the other’s services.
He again returned to fiddling impatiently with his garments. Tolerance or not, that did not in the least excuse his natural eagerness to see this matter played out. He looked to Violet noting the proximity in which she stood to him. Draven would not have minded were she to stand directly to the side of him. While standing directly beside the King insinuated a position of power, it also represented a formal closeness between two people (a thought which Draven meant to reference spefically.) He would, nonetheless, only tolerate her on the left for the right was customarily—in his culture—reserved for eldest sons heir to the throne. Though quite liberal in some regards to the way in which he treated females, he was still first and foremost a son of an extremely patriarchal and authoritarian society.
Draven suddenly scowled. Such thoughts of his and Violet’s relationship brought a sudden mood. He hadn’t meant to think so loosely of such things. Used to Violet’s company, he often thought freely of matters never minding her reading of them. But this was a taboo thought and one which made him ponder its source emotion though he already knew without admitting it.
It was at that moment, thankfully, the Rat arrived, his harsh accent cutting through the silence (or, harsh to Draven’s ears at least). “Sorry I’m late, guv’nah.” Draven disregarded the insincerity of the man’s voice. The thief did his bidding and only that mattered really. The King had plenty of other mindless loyalists to kiss his feet but not a one of them could be counted upon to perform such deceitful errands like Rat. “Are we having a party?”
Draven grinned wryly. Learning forward on his throne, he replied, “A private party naturally.” Who said that the monarch didn’t possess a sense of humor? Utter seriousness at all times bored him (as it would any person). But Draven was a man of wit and preferred interjecting his humor subtly here and there. Like, if he had known about the bound woman that Rat had brought; now that would have provoked quite a twisted remark from the Sovereign. However, he would probably discover this news soon enough with Violet around…
Relaxing, he chose his next words with care. “Rat. Violet. As you both know my mind quite well,” One better than the other. “I think that it’s important that you two finally met. It will be easier to… plot if we’re all on a first name basis.”
He leaned back settling more deeply on his throne resting both arms on the armrests like a dictator comfortable with his own scheming; which was quite the way to put it for schemes were the things that Draven knew best. “In fact, I’m sure the two of you will get to know each other quite well.” There was certain emphasis placed upon that one word—the kind of emphasis one uses when withholding knowledge but choosing to cryptically allude to said knowledge. His grin grew ever the more wry in a most unsettling way.
“Tell me his every thought.” He commanded though only Violet could hear. For Rat, the true mechanics of the King’s mind were as alien as some untraversed galaxy; a person could glimpse it from far away and wager a guess as to its qualities but never truly know it. It pleased the King knowing that he held this one advantage over the tricky thief. In fact, he very much meant to employ it for his advantage. Violet was, after all, quite the obedient little gem.
“I’d like to know everything about him that I don’t already know… Tell that to me in private, of course. Though, feel free to vocalize his current thoughts out loud. In fact, do it.”
His gaze settled on the area where he assumed Rat stood. The expression he gave was of one who was just about to release a very interesting surprise and enjoy immensely the consequences of it. There was a purpose for this whole charade. While it was true that he simply could have told Rat about Violet—and she already knew about his being invisible—he, Draven, would not have profited much from it. Simply telling a person something does not have nearly the same effect as a well thought out display. He wanted to ingrain this moment deeply into Rat’s memory. Though the thief’s loyalty was bought well in gold, there was great power in having a mind reader on one’s side. It was a display of conquest and would serve as a warning to never turn against him.
He propped a hand against his head tilting it in curiosity like a common spectator. The King wondered then what sorts of thoughts wandered in the slime covered gutters of Rat’s mind. Certainly all kinds of trash. But even trash could serve some sort of use…
“Oh, and Dear? Try not to delve too deeply in his mind; you wouldn’t want to catch a disease…”Character 2 again
Draven’s thoughts drifted easily into her mind, and though the subject matter involved her, she didn’t say anything. She didn’t even make a motion to suggest she knew what he was thinking about at all. Draven had long since gotten over the fact that his thoughts were open to her, and Violet did not feel like talking about any of them in particular. She rarely addressed the thoughts of people around her, unless they thought of something rather odd or peculiar that she was curious about.
Then, right when she knew he would, the man called Rat showed up. Violet’s head lazily looked towards him, not even blinking as a voice seemed to come out of thin air. She had expected as much. That was definitely a plus about being able to see the future. There were no surprises in life. Violet did find his accent rather amusing, though. She had never heard such a way of talking before. Cockney, it was called, at least according to him—from some place called England, wherever that was. Somewhere far away from here, she could tell.
“Are we having a party?” Rat said, and though Violet couldn’t see his eyes, she knew he was looking at her. Draven was quick to answer, though, “a private party naturally.” Violet’s eyebrows twitched slightly in a bit of a furrow, wondering how three people could possibly constitute a party. And it’s not like they were having any type of party… it was simply a meeting. It was very odd language for them to use.
“Rat. Violet,” Draven continued on, then, explaining the reason he had called this meeting. It wasn’t anything new to Violet, of course—more for Rat’s benefit than anything, but Violet listened politely anyways, still staring around the room with that vague air about her. It almost looked like she wasn’t listening at all, but she was taking in every word of it, part of her looking off into the future while at the same time reading the thoughts going through both of their heads. A thing Rat didn’t even know was happening…
“Tell me his every thought,” came Draven’s voice, and it took Violet a split-second to realize that he had not said that out loud. Her eyes slowly moved back to look at him, a not necessarily surprised look but more a look of “oh?” on her open face. “I’d like to know everything about him that I don’t already know… tell that to me in private, of course. Though, feel free to vocalize his current thoughts out loud. In fact, do it. Shock him,” Draven continued, still just thinking it all, as silent as an order can get. Violet let out a soft sigh, and looking back at Rat, head cocked to the side slightly as she easily rolled through the thoughts in his mind, like one perusing a book.
“Oh, and Dear? Try not to delve too deeply in his mind; you wouldn’t want to catch a disease…” Okay. Now Violet was confused. She looked back at him, not understand what he meant at all. Jokes were completely lost on her—not so much because she was stupid, but because she’d never seen the point to them. She was blunt and to-the-point by nature, and the mere idea of a joke went right over her head. “You can’t catch a disease from someone’s mind,” she breathed, her voice soft and surprisingly airy, “well, unless you eat it… but I believe that’s frowned upon here.” Coming from anyone else, it would seem very much like she was picking on him somehow, just a humorous little thing to say. But the seriousness with which she said it made it clear that she did not mean this out of jest, but that she honestly took his thought seriously.
Of course, Rat was rather confused by this, but Violet ignored those thoughts, looking back at him, pushing out how ridiculous it was of Draven to try and warn her against diseases. Mind reading did not work that way. “I’m not a whore,” she stated bluntly, looking directly at Rat without blinking, her tone light and emotionless, “though I assure you if I was I would be above average.” Violet heard their thoughts like alarm bells, but ignored it. Draven had asked her to ‘shock him’, and Violet had complied—though she wasn’t quite sure how shocking it really was, not really understanding what it meant to be shocked, since it was clear that Draven did not mean with electricity.
“And you might want to let that girl out before she chokes to death…” she sighed, the words coming out in one long breath, though without sounding rushed. Her eyes drifted back to Draven, her expression quite blank and innocent, a silent question as to if that was what he had meant. She didn’t say anything more, didn’t elaborate on either statement, because it seemed rather unnecessary. Draven would ask Rat himself, after all. ect ect you get the point. Now as I said these are just examples from another site that requires 300 words. But the point is, it is possible I have seen some sites that require miniums of 800 or 1000 words per post. 200 is not that much