Forum of Thrones: An Interactive Story



  • Dark clouds were looming at the sky. Soon there would be rain.

    Reminds me of a certain song.....

    Anyway :D [Decline to spar] Only trouble would come out of that...

    [Sit down with mercenaries] Bros before, eh, knight-buddies?

    Like I said before, the part will be split due to the length. Please, vote under this part for both parts! Lucas It was evening when

  • [Decline to spar with Lucion]

    I loved the way you introduced the whole Reyne family! I'm really looking forward to seek their adventures.

    [Sit down with the mercenaries]

    It reminds me of Kenny/Luke decision...

    Like I said before, the part will be split due to the length. Please, vote under this part for both parts! Lucas It was evening when

  • {Decline to spar}

    {Sit down the mercenaries}, I'd team up with them to be honest

  • [Agree to spar with Lucion after the war meeting] A sparring match would strengthen the relationship between the two soon to be families. I doubt Lucion would like it if he lost though..

    [Sit down with the mercenaries] If Lucas needs help to find Darion or know any information about where he is, I think the mercenaries are best fit. I just hope Leonard doesn't do anything rash and stupid.

  • [Decline to spar with Lucion]

    [Sit down with the mercenaries]

    Yeah, Leonard's still kind of....Leonard, I guess.

    The part turned out a bit longer than I planned and as a result, it will be split again. It would be easier if you vote under the second par

  • I paid money for nothing. Thank you telltalegames. It is not fair price for 2 hours movie. :(

  • Ummm....okay? :D Wrong thread eh?

    aragorn1987 posted: »

    I paid money for nothing. Thank you telltalegames. It is not fair price for 2 hours movie.

  • InGen_Nate_KennyInGen_Nate_Kenny Moderator
    edited January 2015

    [Decline to spar with Lucion]

    [Sit down with the mercenaries]


    Like I said before, the part will be split due to the length. Please, vote under this part for both parts! Lucas It was evening when

  • edited January 2015

    [Decline to spar with Lucion]

    [Sit down with the mercenaries]

    Phew, finally caught up to this amazing story. Keep up the good work!

    Like I said before, the part will be split due to the length. Please, vote under this part for both parts! Lucas It was evening when

  • Aha! I made my lumberjack!

  • [Spar with Lucion]

    [Sit with the mercenaries.]

  • [Agree to spar with Lucion after the war meeting]

    [Sit down with Leonard]

    Like I said before, the part will be split due to the length. Please, vote under this part for both parts! Lucas It was evening when

  • Churned made you pay for this. :P

    aragorn1987 posted: »

    I paid money for nothing. Thank you telltalegames. It is not fair price for 2 hours movie.

  • [removed]

    Churned made you pay for this. :P

  • [removed]

    Holy shit that's big.

  • Please try to stay on topic and focus on what other people are discussing in this thread. Thanks!

    aragorn1987 posted: »

    I paid money for nothing. Thank you telltalegames. It is not fair price for 2 hours movie.

  • edited January 2015

    The Voting is closed!

    Willfred will decline to spar with Lucion after the war meeting

    Lucas will sit with Gutten and his mercenaries

    I am sad to announce that after countless thinking about the future of the Act 1 Storyline, I decided not to include Marak and Lyria as PoV characters in this chapter. Both of them will make a glorious return in Chapter 3, once certain plot points from the other storylines come into motion. On the positive side, this means extra parts for every other PoV in this chapter!

    Some PoV's disappearing for a chapter will probably happen in future chapters too, since it will be hard to give an increasing number of PoV characters a good storyline for each chapter. Of course, that doesn't mean that they won't appear in someone elses PoV ;)

    Writing for the next part is almost halfway done. I'll try my best to get it up in the next 24 hours.

  • Just stumbled into this today and spent the entire day reading. I posted two characters that i've written some about already. I really can't wait to see them in this 'AWESOME' story you have going on here. Can't wait for the next part!

  • edited January 2015

    Thank you! Glad you like the story :)

    Your characters are great and I'm sure I'll find a good role for them!

    Chaosjester posted: »

    Just stumbled into this today and spent the entire day reading. I posted two characters that i've written some about already. I really can't wait to see them in this 'AWESOME' story you have going on here. Can't wait for the next part!

  • Can't wait!

    The Voting is closed! Willfred will decline to spar with Lucion after the war meeting Lucas will sit with Gutten and his mercenaries

  • edited January 2015

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV for this part and will put it up now so that you have something to read already. The second PoV is halfway finished, but it is almost 12AM in my timezone now and therefore I won't finish it today. For a single PoV this one is quite long, but nowhere near the usual length of two PoV's. I'll try to finish another part tomorrow, but can't promise anything!


    That smile. That damnable arrogant smile. How he would love to wipe if off Lannisters face. But not by giving Lucion what he wanted. Willfred forced himself to make a friendly smile.

    “Not today brother. I think it is more important to plan the war, instead of playing it“, Willfred said and his smile got brighter with every word. Lucions smile, on the other hand, faded. “Sure. You are right... brother“, he answered shortly, before turning around and walking up to Lord Crakehall. Willfred looked after him with a triumphant grin. That will teach him!

    “That was not very polite, m'lord“, Willfred heard a voice behind him. As he turned around he saw Lea, who raised one brow in slight amusement. Alannas anger was definitely real on the other hand. His sisters face got bright red, partly out of embarassment, partly out of anger. And Willfred saw tears in his sisters eyes. Oh, not again!

    “You made him angry...“, she hissed, before storming off. Willfred looked after her in slight confusion. Lucion didn't seem to be that angry. More a bit snubbed. And he definitely deserved that! “What exactly is wrong with her? I just declined a small duel“, Willfred said, while looking at Lea. The handmaiden shrugged. “I don't know, m'lord. But it seems your sister has a soft spot for Ser Lucion. She seems to be worried that he won't like her anymore after what you said to him“, she answered. Willfred looked at her in disbelief. His sister and Lucion Lannister? That was... gross. He could understand if she would fall for Lord Marbrand, with his handsome red hair. Or for Mandon Lefferd, heir to Golden Tooth and winner of the toruney of Lannisport. But Lucion? He was an arrogant prick! “But... Lea, he does not like her, does he?“, Willfred answered. The thought was somehow sickening, especially considering his marriage to Lorna Lannister.

    Lea did not gave him a straight answer. “I'll better go after her, m'lord. I'll calm her down, don't you worry“, she said, but she did gave him a slight grin before running after Alanna. Seven Hells, the thought! No doubt Lea had her fun. She was easily intimidated by men like Lucion, but nobody could be intimidated by him right now. Seven Hells, his sister and Lucion Lannister! Willfred needed to talk to someone else, quickly. He needed to talk about something else. He looked to his father, who was about to go into the Great Hall with the king. His mother talked to Lord Marbrand and laughed about something he just said. Tinnet was tending to Lucion horse and brought it to the stables.

    “Willfred Reyne?“, he heard somebody calling him. As he turned to his left, he noticed that General Tallian had stepped into his field of view. The general was a bit taller than him, but definitely heavier. His brown eyes had a cold look on them, but his manners were impeccable. He gave a short bow in front of Willfred. “My name is Vashord Tallian. It is a pleasure meeting you, after hearing so many stories“, he said. His voice was soft and friendly. Willfred gave the general a nod in return. He remembered what he has been told about Vashord Tallian. Even though the general had authority on the battlefield, he was no real nobleman by birth. His success came from being fostered by Lord Robert Westerling, who took a liking to the common boy. When commanding the Westerling troops in a skirmish with Ironborn raiders twelve years ago, he displayed great skill and quickly became one of the Rocks best generals. The smallfolk loved the general, seeing him as one of their own. Many of the more traditional nobles despised him for his common heritage. King Loren, on the other hand, was no man who would despise a useful asset and under his rule, Tallian had a great career.

    “General Tallian, the pleasure is all mine. Tell me, how is the war?“, Willfred asked. His father rarely spoke about the war. Of course, the Reynes had sent troops, mainly to secure the northern coast. Every house was obliged to do that. But they were commanded by a distant uncle of Willfred and were not more than three hundred. The war has been stagnating for years now. Occasionally, the Rock led a campaign into the Riverlands, followed by increasing raidings of the coast. Five years ago, the Ironborn attacked Lannisport, but were repelled. And his father hated this war. He was careful, too careful for Willfreds liking.

    “The war... it had been better before. This will be one of the things we'll talk about in our meeting. I've heard you're joining us?“, the general answered, before walking towards the Great Hall with Willfred. “True. It's my first war meeting. Is there anything I should watch out for?“, Willfred asked.

    Tallian let out a short laugh. “My usual advice would be to be careful around your father. He is a clever man and does not like this war. But what is your opinion on the war?“ Willfred was silent for a moment. He wanted to go into battle. He wanted to achieve glory. He wanted to be a hero and to prove himself worthy for Loren Lannisters daughter. But then he remembered how Allana cried at the thought of him going to war. “I've never been to a real war, General. I just hope we're going to win“, he finally answered. This seemed to amuse Tallian, who slightly chuckled but stayed silent.

    Castameres Great Hall wasn't the biggest and most beautiful in the kingdom. The whole castle lacked the massiveness of Casterly Rock and wasn't an architectonial masterpiece, like Ashemark. But it was built deep into the surface, with over half of the castle being built underground, directly connected to the massive silver mines that gave the Reynes their wealth. The Great Hall reflected this. Where other lords styled their halls with gold, the Reynes used silver. Silver frames for doors and windows, silver tableware, the silver banner of the Reynes on every wall. A red lion on silver ground.

    “We should probably go to the king. I know how urgently he wants to hold this war meeting“, Tallian said. Willfred saw his father, together with the King and Quentyn Crakehall. They were already heading towards one of the smaller chambers that connected to the Great Hall. Stefron Marbrand was still talking to Willfreds mother, but seemed to notice the kings intention. He took a gracious bow, followed by a kiss on the hand for Lady Mileena and turned around to join the king. Lucion joined him, still with a stony face. Willfred knew that the young Lannister wasn't used to being rejected, but his reaction was still slightly amusing. As he walked towards the king and his father, he noticed that Two-Face was nearing. The scarred man gave Willfred a short nod and came closer.

    “Two-Face! Will you accompany us to the war meeting?“, Willfred asked, slightly surprised. Two-Face has been the families bodyguard for twenty years now and was definitely trustworthy. But he wasn't a high-ranking officer. Two-Face smiled. The effect on his scarred flesh was gruesome. “Indeed, Willfred“, he answered with his deep voice. Two-Face was one of the few commoners who called Willfred by his name, instead of adressing him as „m'lord“. Willfred knew the man his whole life and it felt fitting. For him, Two-Face was almost a family member. And there were members of his family he knew less than him.

    “Lord Darren asked me to accompany you. My knowledge could come in handy. And I know the General better than any other person in this room“, the bodyguard said. Now that was a pleasant surprise! Two-Face had his flaws and wasn't very talkative, but in the end, Willfred would gladly have him by his side.

    They entered the small meeting room. It was barely big enough for a small table, maybe able to hold about ten persons. King Loren had already sat down at the head of the table, Lucion to his left, Lord Darren to his right. Next to Lucion sat Vashord Tallian next to him Quentyn Crakehall, who carried a small bundle. Stefron Marbrand took a seat on Lord Darrens side of the table, but left space for Willfred to sit between the two men. Two-Face stood behind Lord Darren, always watchful. Willfred noticed that the bodyguard was the only armed person in the room.

    “Willfred. Please, grab a seat, let us begin“, the king spoke. On the table, a map of the Rock has been placed. Willfred noticed a small figurine of a kraken, symbolising the Iron Islands, standing on the map, near the Golden Tooth.

    “Lord Darren, you're likely asking yourself why I insisted on meeting you“, Loren said. His voice was calm, but his eyes looked in worry at the small kraken. Willfreds father nodded. “I was indeed going to ask that, your grace“, he answered. He had clearly noticed Lorens gaze. The King of the Rock closed his eyes. “The Ironborn have started an offensive. The war has been going on for decades now, but Harren Hoare wants to end it. And I'm afraid he might win, if we don't take drastic measures. I have sent ravens to possible allies, but the responses have been less than favourable. The North declined. Torrhen Stark is a cautious man, who does not want to get on Harren Hoares bad side. The Vale declined. Sharra Arryn thinks that she can keep the Vale out of any of our world's problems simply by ignoring them. The Reach however did not decline directly. Mern Gardener leaves it up to his bannermen to help us or not“

    With these words, Loren pulled out a small scroll. Willfred noticed the seal of a crowned book on it. “This is a letter, written by Robert Raylan, Lord of Raylansfair, three months ago. Lord Raylan agrees to send us troops. He wants to send five hundred men to secure our southern borders“

    A second scroll followed. The seal was the same. “This letter was written three weeks ago, by Lord Raylans castellan, a man called Harris Flowers. Flowers wrote that Lord Raylan is dying and not able to make rational decisions. He declined our request for troops. And that, mylords, is devastating for our war efforts“

    Lord Darren cocked his eyebrows. “With all due respect, your grace, but that does not explain why you insisted on having this meeting at Castamere“, he said. Willfred noticed a worried tone in his fathers voice. His father rarely sounded worried, always seemed to be in control.

    Lannister looked at him with a stony face. “We need Lord Raylan to hold the promise he gave us. We need his troops!“, he said with a stern face. Willfred looked at the king in confusion. “My king, I don't understand. Is the war really so bad that we need the troops of such a small house?“, he asked. Loren sighed. “I'm afraid it is even worse...“, he mumbled and his face got a sorrowful expression. He gave a short nod to Lord Crakehall, who put his small bundle onto the table.

    Willfred noticed that it was a small battleaxe. “Marauders have been sighted near Crakehall and in other regions in our southern borders. They wore weapons like this. Weapons with the sigil of the kraken on them...“, Crakehall said with his brittle voice.

    Before Willfred realized what this meant, General Tallian began to speak. “Should the Ironborn attack the southern Rock, we won't be able to stop them. We are ready for a war in the north and in the east. But the south is hard to defend. We would loose Crakehall and Silverhill before troops from Casterly Rock could come to their aid“, he explained, while pointing at different places on the map. Lord Marbrand cleared his throat. “At the same time, we received ravens from Banefort and Faircastle. Ironborn longships have been sighted on the northern coast. We have to deploy troops there too“, he added

    Darren Reyne nodded. “I agree, mylords. But what about the Golden Tooth? A small number of men can hold the castle for months. We can deploy troops from them. No need to pull a foreign lord into this war“

    Loren Lannister bowed forwards and put his hand next to the small kraken figurine. “The Golden Tooth is under heavy siege since a fortnight ago. Lionel Lefferd is dead. His son Mandon is Lord of the Tooth now. But he needs aid. He needs you, my friend“, the king said, while looking at Willfreds father. "You will travel with two thousand man, under joint command of you and Lord Marbrand. A thousand will be your own. Another thousand will join you in Ashemark. And we need Raylansfair as well. Five hundred men have been promised and five hundred men we shall get! Mylords, one of you has to travel south, to settle this matter.“

    Lucion leant forward, with a wicked smile on his face. “Willfred... Maybe you want to travel to Raylansfair and settle this matter?“, he asked. Willfred froze. That was it. Lucions little revenge for the declined duel. “Me? What... Why should I...?“, he managed to stutter.

    “You want to marry my sister, don't you? Well, how can you call yourself a brother of mine, if you fail to convince a minor lord to send us troops?“, Lucion answered. Lord Crakehall and Two-Face looked at him with disapprove, while Lord Marbrand signalised approval. “Yes... the son of an influential noble family, travelling into the cozy village to settle this matter directly. This will impress the locals. I doubt they have ever seen a true nobleman“, he said.

    “This idea... I have heard worse from you, son“, Loren spoke. Willfred sighed. The king liked this idea. So, no war for him. Instead he would travel to Raylansfail... “I don't think I get a saying in this, do I?“, he asked hopefully. His fathers glare could have made a lion tremble and was response enough. “Alright then... Any advice how I should do this?“

    Lucion wanted to say something, but a stern look from the king silenced him. “We have gold. Buy them, if you must. Or... intimidate them. Tell Lord Raylan, a Lannister always pays his debts. The reason I chose you is, because you probably have an ally in the Reach“ Loren exchanged a quick look with Willfreds father. “Darren, your brother travels the Reach, doesn't he?“

    Darren Reyne scoffed. “My half-brother, yes. Ser Roger Hill... A man without honor. Unreliable. He has no loyalty to the Rock“ Lucion narrowed his eyes. “He is a good man...“, the kings son said. Loren put him off. “Probably. Your uncle could be of help, if you manage to find him. He has contacts to many Houses of Reach. Maybe even to House Raylan. But I'll leave it up for you to decide“

    Willfred gulped. He never met his uncle, Ser Roger Hill. From what he knew, he got into a fight with his father, before Willfred was born and he hadn't visited Castamere for twenty years. He had spent a few years in Casterly Rock, training Lucion, before taking off to the Reach. His father called him unreliable. And he could be anywhere in the northern Reach. Searching him could be futile. But he could also be a valuable ally, if he would find him. And if he could convince him to help. And Loren left it up for him to decide.

    [Decide to seek help from your uncle] [Decide to travel directly to Raylansfair]

  • edited January 2015

    Really good half-chapter, I really like the rivalry between Lucion and Willfred.

    [Decide to seek help from your uncle]

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to travel directly to Raylansfair]

    Real interesting.

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • Take your time man. Uni is very important .

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to travel directly to Raylansfair.] It just seems like it'd be next to impossible to find him, we'd be wasting time on Ser Roger.

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to travel directly to Raylansfair]

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to seek help from your uncle]

    Going to need all the help they can get.

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to seek help from your uncle]

    Amazing Chapter!!!!!

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to seek help from your uncle]

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • edited January 2015

    [Decide to seek help from your uncle]

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [Decide to travel directly to Raylansfair.]

    Can't wait for the next one :)

  • [Decide to travel directly to Raylansfair] That is what I would do, seems kinda hard task to find this uncle and if Willfred has never even met him....

    Anyway, this was amazing! I've always enjoyed war meetings and kings :)

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • {Decide to travel directly to raylansfair}

    The uncle sounds interesting but oh well I feel the kid wants to prove himself

  • Ooooh, the story gets even more interesting! I like it that you give Reynes a big role. I feel flattered.

    Anyway, [decide to seek help from your uncle.]

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • [decide to seek help from your uncle]

    So... the part was supposed to be finished today. Unfortunately university took almost all of my time today. I have finished the first PoV f

  • The Voting is closed!

    Willfred will seek help from his uncle

    That was a very close one. Thanks to you all for voting! Writing for the new part is almost done and it will definitely be up today.

    On another note: The story just got longer again, thanks to the characters I received today. Among them will even be one new PoV character! Thank you all very much for submitting them. However, I might temporarily close the submission box after Act 1, with plans on reopening it in later Acts of the story, so I get a bit less characters in the waiting list.

  • edited January 2015

    Again, the part will be split due to the length. Seems to become routine now :D

    Anyway, it was probably for the better that I only posted one PoV yesterday, since that allows me to post two parts together that simply belong together. Hope you like them :)


    It was no real choice. It was presented as a choice. The polite tone of the conversation, the comfortable ambiente, the luxury, it all barely concealed the fact that he had no real choice in this. He knew people like the Burned Man. They would always get what they want.

    “I will work with you, Burned Man“, Jaron finally answered. The Burned Man smiled his calm, soft and soothing smile. “I am glad to hear this, Ser Jaron. I...“, he started to say, before suddenly breaking off, letting out a pained groan and starting to shiver. Jaron took a step back, quite startled, but Harpy appeared calm as always. She helped the Burned Man back to his chair, before turning to a small cupboard. The Burned Man was breathing heavily and had his eyes narrowed. Jaron noticed tears of pain in the mans eyes. Harpy returned to his side, holding a small cup in her hand milky liquid inside the cup. She positioned the cup at the Burned Mans mouth and he quickly drank a few sips. The shivering almost stopped, his breathing got normal again. When he noticed Jarons shocked gaze, the Burned Man laughed, before the laugh went over into a cough. “A little gift from the Wise Masters. Pain follows me wherever I go...“, he managed to say, before looking at the cup. “Milk of the Poppy. Highly diluted, so that it barely blurs my mind. Enough to stop the pain, at least for a short while“ He gave Harpy an affectionate smile, which she returned. Jaron gulped. He knew the milk. Maesters used it to lessen pain. In an undiluted state it was enough to make a grown man sleep for days.

    “I'm glad you are here to help me, Ser Jaron. I admit, I am in no way a good man. But there are people fighting over this city, fighting over this kingdom, who are far worse than anything you can imagine“, the Burned Man said,while shivering from the pain. “These people will gladly walk on the corpses of millions to achieve their goals. I despise bravery. It is mankinds biggest sin. But we can't let these people win. I'm afraid that to stop them, we have to be brave, we have to be heroes for once. That is what you always wanted, right?“

    Jaron narrowed his eyes. He had noticed the quick change in the Burned Mans tone. He spoke almost fatherly now. “Of whom do you speak when you say “People who will walk on the corpses of millions“?“, the Hedge Knight asked. “And even more important, why do you care?“, he added after a short pause. The Burned Man gave him a weak smile.

    “Good questions, Ser Jaron. I'm afraid the answers are less satisfying. I don't know who these people are. They are at least as powerful as I am, but in a different way. I don't have answers, I don't have proof. I just have rumours. Tell me, Ser Jaron, have you ever heard about the Solvers?“, he said. Jaron noticed a subtle change in Harpys face. The Burned Man appeared as calm as ever, but his handmaiden was clearly agitated. “Can't say I have. What do they solve?“, Jaron answered.

    The Burned Man's kind smile faded. “Problems. Or at least what they feel are problems. On their good days, they kill people. On their bad days... Well, let's just say, they target people whom they would call 'criminals'“

    “You wouldn't call them criminals? Is crime something subjective now? Then, how would you call them?“, Jaron asked. He did not like the way this conversation was heading. He was a knight, hedge or not. He shouldn't sit in a gloomy backroom and have a pleasant conversation with a criminal about serial killers.

    “Children. I would call them children. Survivors. Victims. But mainly children“, the Burned Man answered. His voice was calm as always, but Jaron noticed a burning rage in his dark eyes. “I have many children in my employment. Children are easy to please. Easy to lead. They appear harmless, but with the right training, there is little a child would back off from. And I admit, I have a soft spot for them. It doesn't cost me much money to keep my employees fed and clothed and safe. I care for them, because nobody else cares. They look at boys like Himani and they see a filthy urchin. I see a boy with a brilliant mind and sharp wit. I see a useful tool. And I care.“

    Jaron felt sick after what he just heard. The way the Burned Man spoke about children... That wasn't right. Children shouldn't be used in that way! But on the other hand, he knew how life in poverty was. In every larger city there was a Burned Man. And it was better to have men like him around. “The Solvers, now they have been active in the Reach for over twenty years. Always under different names. Always with a similar strategy. They kill. They instill fear in those who are forced to break the law. They abduct. Most people are never seen again. Sometimes they return. Mutilated. Crippled. Burned...“, the Burned Man explained. The anger in his eyes was now slightly affecting his voice. Slightly, but still it had a terrible effect on the baritone voice.

    Jaron knew people like the Burned Man. They seemed affable. They seemed polite. They seemed like the lesser evil. And that made them so dangerous. He looked into the Burned Man's eyes, this deep dark pools, filled with pain, filled with anger, the sanest eyes Jaron had ever seen. He had no doubt that the Burned Man wasn't that different to the Solvers. But still... children...

    “What do you want me to do?“, the Hedge Knight asked. The Burned Man seemed to calm down a bit. “The Solvers know that you meet me right now, Ser Jaron. They have eyes and ears on the street, almost as many as I have. Everything I know about the solvers comes from their surviving victims. And from the one man who survived my wrath...“ A devious smile appeared on the Burned Mans face. “A Solver was captured by my men. He didn't want to talk. So, we sat together, albeit a bit different than our little meeting now, we sat together and I talked to him. With words and knifes. Eventually, what was left of him started talking. They have a leader. Many of the common solvers don't know him, but they call him 'Butterfly'“, he explained. Jaron raised an eyebrow. “Butterfly? That does not sound very intimidating...“, he said. The Burned Man shrugged. Or at least he attempted to shrug. A part of his left shoulder wasn't moving at all. “Butterfly doesn't need to sound intimidating. His actions speak for themselves. He is a monster. And believe me, as a fellow monster, I rarely use this word, unless someone really deserves it“

    Jaron felt anger inside of him. The Burned Man was despicable, in every way. And Butterfly? If the Burned Man just told the truth, Butterfly was even worse. “Who is he?“, Jaron wanted to know. The Burned Man seemed to be pleased. “Ah, you are angry... Like I said, I don't have proof about his identity. But I have rumours and assumptions. Soon there will be rumour on the street, that Butterfly wants to meet you“

    Jarons eyes widened. “Meet me? Why in all the Seven Hells does he want to meet me?“, he uttered. “Because you are speaking to me right now, Ser Jaron. Butterfly has his rumours. And I have mine. And rumours travel fast in this town. I have no doubt that he will learn about you and approach you soon. You are a new player in this little shadow game, an unknown variable. You can bring victory, either for me, or for Butterfly. Or you can become another nameless grave. Your choice“, the Burned Man answered. Jaron gulped. He was in Oldtown for mere hours and already got into a fight between to crime lords! And all because of Ser Matthos and his debt. But regardless of how he got into this situation, he had to end it. “When will he meet me?“, Jaron asked.

    “Butterfly is well-connected. If my estimations are correct, he will learn about you tomorrow. By this time, I'll have a group of employees ready. They will follow you, silently and subtly. And when you meet Butterfly, they will kill him“, the Burned Man said.

    That was all? It sounded a bit too easy. “If it is that easy to kill him, why haven't you done so earlier?“, Jaron asked. The Burned Man gave him a cryptic smile. “Because you are of special interest for him, my dear Ser Jaron. I already tried to kill Butterfly. His retaliations were horrible. He is a very careful man, who would never meet anyone in person, but you and the late Ser Matthos are of interest for him. Interesting enough that he will let down a few guards. And before you ask, I don't know why he is interested in you and Ser Matthos. I just know that some Solvers have been watching you ever since you came near this city“

    Jaron took a deep breath. Great. Now he was of 'special interest' for the Butterfly. “Can you assure my safety?“, he asked. The Burned Man politely shook his head. “I never assure anything“, he softly said. “Do you have any more questions?“

    Jaron was only able to shook his head in disbelief. That is not how things are supposed to be. He never was in a situation he couldn't overcome with bravery. But now, to be honest, he was afraid. Afraid that he made the wrong decision in helping the Burned Man. In this moment, a door was opened and a small, sad-faced boy came in. He held a scroll, that he handed to the Burned Man.

    “Very well then. I assume our meeting is over, for now. We will meet again, Ser Jaron“, the Burned Man said, while looking over the scroll. “Harpy, please show him out. Ser Jaron, I assure you, everything will go according to plan. My urchins will contact you!“

    The way back through the Burned Man's house went in complete silence. Jaron was lost in thoughts. And Harpy didn't seem to be eager to speak either. When they reached the door, Harpy silently opened it. It was dark outside, with only a few stars shining. Jaron looked in her face and noticed... worry?

    “Are you afraid mylady?“, he asked. Are you afraid! He couldn't have thought of a dumber way to initiate a conversation! Of course she was afraid, it was clear from the way her dark eyes looked at him.

    Harpy closed her eyes. “I have seen what Butterfly does to his victims. What the Wise Masters did to the Burned Man was merciful in comparison. Yes, Ser Jaron, I am afraid. Only a fool wouldn't be. I am afraid the Burned Man overestimates himself this time...“, she said softly. Jaron looked out into the dark night. “Bakr told me that you knew him before he became the Burned Man... is that true? How did he become... you know“, he asked. Harpy gave him a short smile, a sad smile completely without joy. “It is true. But it is a sad story. All I'm going to tell you is, that he is the best and bravest man I know. And he needs help, from people like you“, she answered, before quickly turning away, but not before Jaron noticed the hint of a tear in her eyes. “Good night, Ser Jaron. Stay safe. You're better than some of the people here“, she whispered.

    Jaron looked after her and stepped out of the building and into the night. Winter was still far, especially in Oldtown, but still it was an unusually cold night. Jaron shivered. Now, if he remembered correctly, he had to go down that road...

    It took him a while to admit that he was completely lost. At first he tried to take the Hightower as a point of orientation, but that damned thing was just too big and too close to be of any real help. At least he knew that he was in the right half of the city. But every alleyway looked completely the same to him. And there was something else. Someone followed him. At first he thought it was only his imagination. The Burned Man slightly scared him with his speech. That was all. Butterfly... The name was ridiculous.! If Jaron would have been a crime lord he would have chosen a more intimidating name, that's for sure. No it was only his imagi...

    A tall man walked into his field of view, armed with a sword. He was an ugly man, one of the charming folks who likely had a pig somewhere in their family tree. He was bald, his nose was severely broken and part of his upper lip was missing, giving him a distinctively gruesome look.

    “Jaron the Bastard?“, the tall man asked with a wicked smile, while he was drawing his sword. Jaron turned around and saw two other men blocking the alleyway. “There has been some talk on the streets. People say you work for that burned cripple now... That was the wrong choice, Bastard...“, the tall man hissed, while coming closer. His voice was a deep, guttural growl

    Jaron turned around again. Ah, Seven Hells! One of the other men had a crossbow. The third man, a small, weasely looking guy, was armed with a long dagger and also approaching, while the crossbowman took aim.

    “Let me guess... Butterfly wants to meet me...“, Jaron said. Damn it! The Burned Man was certain that he wouldn't be approached until tomorrow. The tall man shook his head. “No, Bastard. Butterfly wants you dead. He has no use for you, except sending that burned fuck a message. While the Solvers are in this city, no crime goes unpunished...“, he said, while grinning his terrible grin. Jaron gulped. There went the Burned Mans plan. The Hedge Knight drew his sword. He was a good fighter, but against three men? And one of them was armed with a crossbow. The small man took a step closer. He had something in his gaze that made Jaron uncomfortable. This man wasn't mad. He was rotten. “Before we kill you, I'm going to cut off your cock and send it to the cripple... Maybe his little bitch can fuck herself with it!“, he said with glee. The tall man let out a loud laugh. “I'd pay to see that. But first, Bastard, I'm going to hear you scream... Scream a little for me and maybe I will make it quick“, he hissed. Jaron looked around. There was no way he could run away from this. He had to decide which one to attack first. The crossbowman was out of his reach as long as the small man was there. However, the tall man was probably the more dangerous fighter. He had to make a decision, quick...

    [Attack the tall man] [Attack the small man]

  • Ellena

    “I would love to see the city, Terroma!“, Ellena said, barely containing her joy. Finally! From what she had seen, Oldtown could be almost as fascinating as Braavos. The giant tower almost mesmerized her. From here, she had to tilt her head back to see it's top. A giant fire burned there, a light in the darkness for ships countless miles away.

    Terroma smiled. “Then you shall see the city, little Ellena“, he said. Talea didn't seem to be thrilled by that thought. “Oldtown. Terroma you are taking her to Oldtown. I hope you know what you're up for“, she said with a cold voice. Terroma gave her a rotten smile. “Talea dearest, I always know what I'm up for“, he said. The captains daughter looked him deep in the eyes. “Good... because if you let anything happen to that girl, there will be no fucking place in this world where you could hide“ Terromas smile faded and his face got a stern look. “I promise that I'll keep her safe“, he said. It was the most serious tone Ellena ever heard from him. Yes, she trusted him. If Terroma wasn't worth her trust, who was? Talea seemed to be slightly reassured. She turned to Ellena, gently putting a hand on her shoulder. “Stay with Terroma, do you hear me? Listen to him. This city isn't Braavos, where even the cunts on the streets have a certain degree of honor. This is Oldtown. It was already ancient before Valyria fell. It had plenty of time to develop depravity“, she said before gently hugging her. Ellena was a bit surprised by this display of affection. She knew, Talea was fond of her, but this time she seemed genuinely worried. Was this city really that dangerous? Even with Terroma around?

    She left the Pale Princess with a slightly uncomfortable feeling, that quickly vanished once she inhaled the air. The smells! The Purple Harbor of Braavos had hundreds of smells. Spices from Qarth. Roasted lamb from Lazhar. Ale from the North. Perfume from Lys. This harbor had it all and even more. It was the biggest harbor she had ever seen. And the people! Never before had she seen so many people on one place. Ellena looked on with joy, as a chunky dark-skinned man from the Summer Island trounced a screaming dwarf with a huge fish, while shouting profanities in his language. A Pentoshi with an oiled and forked beard had a vociferous argument with a young Dornish woman. As Ellena walked after Terroma, an elegant Braavosi took a short and very gallant bow in front of her, before handing her a rose and walking off without saying a word. She looked after him, barely noticing that she had blushed.

    When Terroma noticed her facial expression, he let out a jovial laugh. “You have an admirer, little Ellena!“, he exclaimed. Elllena narrowed her eyes at him.“Not true!“, she answered, but when Terroma still laughed she felt the need to add “He was from Braavos. And he was much older than me!“ Terroma still chuckled. “Oh, he was from Braavos, now that explains everything!“ Ellena gave him a furious glare. “Stop laughing! It was sweet. And the rose is very pretty!“ Still, Terromas laugh sounded for another couple of minutes, until Ellena had no other choice but to laugh too. She gave the rose to a young man who relaxed in front of a barber's shop, taking an elegant bow, before walking away without saying a word.

    “You're learning, sweet Ellena“, Terroma said with an approving nod. “So, were do you want to go first?“, he asked. Ellena thought about that for a short moment. “What's with the tower? Can we go there?“, she asked. Terroma smiled. “We can try. We can't go inside of that tower. You know, it is a castle and a prison. You can't just walk into a castle. But we can go near it“, he answered. Ellena squealed with joy. For the first time in many months, she felt truly happy. Ever since she got into that orphanage, something was missing. And now that she walked down the alleys of Oldtown together with Terroma, she knew what it was. Home.

    The Hightower got taller and taller the closer she got. It was impossible to guess how tall it truly was, but Ellena was certain that it was at least three times talles than the titan of Braavos. And it took them long to reach it. The sun was already fading, when they arrived at the square in front of the tower. The city watch had an increased presence here, a large amount of supplicants was located in front of the Towers main entrance. It was not only tall, but also quite broad as well. Ellena was eating a fried slice of bread that Terroma had bought her. For himself, Terroma had bought a new knife, because according to him, a men could ever have enough knifes. It was a simple blade, best suited for slicing an apple. And indeed, shortly after Ellena noted that, Terroma had bought an apple and shared half of it with her.

    “Terroma, why are all these people here?“, she asked. She had already seen supplicants in front of the Sealord's Palace in Braavos, but never that many on one place. Terroma sighed. “They are not here to plead to their lord. They are here for their religion. Do you see the tall building there? The one with the spiky towers? That is the Starry Sept, the most important building in the Faith of the Seven. The Lord of Oldtown is revered for his piousness. These men are here to pray an evening prayer together with their lord and together with the High Septon“, he explained, but he did not seem happy about it. Ellena did not ask. She knew that Terroma did not like to talk about himself, so she did him a favour and stayed quiet.

    After visiting the place in front of the Hightower, Terroma took her to a short tour through the different religious temples. She liked the temple of the Red God and had a brief conversation with the local Red Priest, a friendly and witty man named Samor, with bright red hair and kind eyes. She even managed to give him a good laugh when she gave him an impersonation of the Stranger.

    “You should be careful when showing that to a Septon! He would likely piss himself“, Samor laughed. Ellena gave him a grin. “Well, that could only improve their smell...“, she joked. This time Terroma joined in their laugh. Ellena remembered the red priests in Braavos. Some of them had been quiet fanatics, with a fierce look in their eyes. Samor on the other hand was completely different. His smile was contagious, even after she had already left the temple. In a certain way, he was able to spread the fire of the Red God in a far better way than the stiff priests in Braavos.

    After visiting the red temple, Terroma offered to take her to the shrine of the Black Goat of Qohor, but Ellena politely declined. The Black Goat had always been one of her least favourite gods. It's followers were cruel and quiet people. Instead Terroma took her to Oldtowns godswood, a walled garden, in complete silence. Several pine trees were planted there, as well as pretty flowers. But what really captured Ellenas attention was the large tree in the middle of the godswood. It was a bone white tree, with blood red leaves. An ancient face was carved into the tree, not quiet human, a face that demanded respect. The eyes of the face were filled with red colour, it's mouth seemed to be screaming.

    “The Andals cut down the weirwood trees when they landed in Westeros, everywhere except in the north and a few other places in the south. They saw it as a threat to their Faith of the Seven. Oldtowns tree was among the lucky ones. What you see here, child, is truly ancient. The children of the forest carved this face“, Terroma explained. Ellena listened to the sound of the rustling leaves. It almost sounded as if the tree would speak to her. “I've heard about the godswood... Is it true that the dead can hear us at a weirwood?“, she recalled a tale her father had told her. Her father... The solitude of this godswood brought up these memories again. Terroma softly patted her back. “Nobody knows for sure. Some of the northerners claim that their dead loved ones are with them in the godswood. Do you want to give it a try?“, he asked. Ellena could only give him a weak nod, afraid that everything else would make her cry. She walked up to the weirwood, unsure what she should even do. Finally, she decided to simply kneel in front of the inhuman face. With her small hand, she touched the faces cheek. It felt almost warm. Instead of pulling her hand back, she gently stroke the blood red colour in the eye. It was no ordinary colour, that was certain. It almost felt fluid, even thousands of years after it had been painted.And while she knew that it was impossible, for a short moment it seemed as the blood red eyes of the tree look at her. No... only one eye, one blood red eye, from a place beyond time. Thousand eyes and one, seeing everything that was and ever will be. And for a short moment, the fraction of a second, the thousand eyes and one focused on her. They saw her and Ellena felt... something. The feeling was impossible to describe. But it was peaceful. For a short moment, she felt peaceful. When she finally pulled her fingers back, they were blood red from the colour. She looked up and noticed that the sun had already set. She had been in the godswood for hours.

    “Are you finished, little Ellena?“, Terroma asked. He sat on a small stone bench and must have sat there for hours. “Terroma? What... happened? I only touched the face for a short moment...“, Ellena stuttered. “I saw something...“, she added, but Terroma stopped her with a handwave. “Then you are truly blessed. But you should not speak about the gifts the weirwoods can give you. Nor should you attempt to do something like this again. I have heard stories about the trees. Bone chilling stories, little Ellena. Maybe I'll tell you some of them, as soon as we're back aboard the Princess. Talea will be distraught about our long disappearance, I am certain of that“, he said. Ellena looked at him in confusion. How many hours have passed? It seemed like a short moment, maybe a minute at most. And thousand eyes and one, staring at her. They saw her...

    Ellena and Terroma were quick to rush through the nightly alleys of Oldtown. After sunset, the city didn't seem to be that friendly anymore. It was cold. Only few people were walking on the streets. And they weren't interesting. They looked dangerous. A few times, a group of people walked up towards them, but Terroma quickly walked into a nearby alleyway. Ellena shivered. The red colour on her fingers was still there. And it was warm, far warmer than the rest of her body.

    “Before we kill you, I'm going to cut off your cock and send it to the cripple... Maybe his little bitch can fuck herself with it!“, a high voice hissed in an adjacent alleyway.

    “I'd pay to see that. But first, Bastard, I'm going to hear you scream... Scream a little for me and maybe I will make it quick“, a second voice, deeper, more guttural, more brutal. Ellena stopped and looked into the alleyway. She saw a young man, barely grown, in a badly fitting armor, his sword drawn. Three men were about to attack him. He looked frightened. He needed help. The three attackers on the other hand were clearly enjoying this. Ellena could see the expression on the tall mans face. No... no she did not want to see that, she did not want to remember that night. She did not want that to happen!

    “Terroma, we have to help him!“, she urged. Terroma had stopped and looked at the looming fight. “Not possible, sweet Ellena“, he said softly. “They are three, he is only one. He will die, that's for sure“

    Ellena looked at him, in fear of what would happen every moment. “But... but you can help him, can't you?“, she asked. She hoped. Terroma shook his head. “I could. I could kill them all in a heartbeat. But we don't know what happened there. Oldtown is dangerous. We might get on someones bad side. I don't want to get on someones bad side. And I don't want you or Talea get on someones bad side either. These men could belong to a very powerful person. Getting in the way of these people means danger! We should go...“, the Braavosi said. But he sounded less convinced of himself now. Ellena looked at the young knight again.

    [Try to convince Terroma to help the knight] [Listen to Terromas advice and do nothing]

  • {Attack the small man}

    {Do nothing}

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