Jump to content
SixShots22

A Child's Nightmare [Quest]

Recommended Posts

Acreanda was walking in the rural town of Doughton looking to sample mead, when he found a tavern. Acreanda walked in, and immediately he noticed something was off. There was only two people there. Acreanda walked into the tavern and began to talk to the bartender. "Hello, one bottle of mead please," Acreanda said trying to lighten up the mood. The bartender walked off without saying anything and began making the drink. "Heard anything around town?" Acreanda tried again. The bartender handed him his drink and walked off. Acreanda then walked to the only other person in the bar. "Have you heard anything lately?" Acreanda said, struggling to make conversation. With Acreanda's short height, the man looked like the Empire State Building. "There's been talk about ghosts around town. Just like in the children's tales." The man said with a rough voice. That was the one thing this guy chose to say.

Acreanda sat down and kicked his feet up. The only reason he is staying there is because the mead is so good. He looked at the job board and saw a poster. Missing: Harper Grace. Reward: $100. I'll do anything for that much cash. Then it showed and address. I'm going to be glad to leave this place Acreanda thought. Then, Acreanda saw that the posters were everywhere. Acreanda thought he knew where that was. Time to get my cash on! Acreanda was excited. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Minda was a bit of a traveler, she couldn't deny. And she supposed she was a bit of a merchant as well, selling the magic tools she created in the towns she passed through. The only things she could really remember were the people who bought her wares or asked her how the magic worked, or managed to teach her something new. She couldn't tell you how many towns she had been in, which ones they had been, or how long she had been travelling. 

But she could tell you just how many children frolicked through the streets in those towns, how many ran up to her stand excitedly asking what she had to sell and if any of those things were toys. She could remember their names and stories easily. 

And thus this town was marked for her, suddenly. Because in place of children, there were posters declaring that the children were missing. She asked around and none would give her a straight answer, besides the appearance of ghosts or demons, suspiciously like the ones in kids tales. Kids tales tended to have the slightest note of truth in them, she often found.

Through this questioning, Minda found herself in a tavern. She saw only two people besides herself there- the bartender, who was unusually quiet, and a man who seemed almost giddy with excitement with his legs propped up on a table. Both immediately disappeared from her range of attention as quickly as they had entered it, and she turned her focus and memory towards the posters covering the walls, trying to memorize names and faces. This wasn't something to be taken lightly, and she didn't want to leave this town without getting to the bottom of it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dan was simply walking down the street. Yep. Simply walking down the street. Also nicking the wallets of anyone close enough to him to get to without being noticed. He then noticed an open tavern, and decided to duck inside before people start to notice their missing stuff while he was in sight. This would also give him a prime spot to count up the goods.
Once inside, Dan was greeted by the deafening sounds of absolute silence. This... was highly unusual.
I thought taverns were full of noisy drunk people beating the shit out of each other. Hm.
Dan then noticed a wall of missing posters. Normally, he wouldn't so much care, except that all of them were kids. This struck a serious nerve, and Dan decided he was getting involved.
He walked up to the bartender, who was busy cleaning a pristine glass with no need for cleaning whatsoever. "Yo, uh, what's with all the missing kids?" In RPGs, barkeeps were always the go to for information on this kind of thing.
"............." Was the response he got. The bartender jammed a thumb at the drinks menu. Nice guy. Evidently, he wanted Dan to buy something.
Wait what? What's the legal drinking age here?
Dan decided that it didn't matter, apparently. However, he knew literally nothing about alcoholic drinks. So he went with the first thing that popped into his head from a movie he saw once.
"Umm, a martini. With gin of course. Stirred for 10 seconds while glancing at an unopened bottle of vermouth."
The bartender's eyebrow cranked up like a drawbridge, but he got busy. Dan had the drink in a few moments. Dan payed the bartender, and went to sit down, preferably far away from the useless bartender.
He sipped at the martini, and his toes curled in horrendous disgust. But he tried very hard to keep his face normal. He had already payed for this after all, and 2 others were here. He didn't want to look dumb, especially after taking interest in a missing kids wall. He decided to wait and see if the others were also interested. One seemed really excited about missing kids. ..... Thats.... a little weird.
The other was a woman. Kinda reminded Dan of Artemis. She kept staring at the wall. Definitely interested. Dan kept sipping at the martini, fully aware that his toes were not unclenching any time soon, and started thinking about how so many kids could vanish so easily.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Daphne was actually used to being mistook for a child. Her figure didn't exactly reflect the mature, adult woman she was by any means, nor did her physique or even her voice contradict everyone's claim. She'd gotten over it well enough; people treated her with respect most of the time once they realized she knew what she was doing, and given that she infrequently spoke up about anything, much of the time it didn't even matter what people thought of her. Yet the town of Doughton threw her for a loop, as the small backwoods town seemed to be expecting somebody like her.

A child, but not, in a sense.

The ride into town was still, as if an unseen tension held Doughton together, just barely. Her horse, the meatless, featureless skeletal beast of burden, plodded silently down the road as she took in the sights. It wasn't nightfall, and yet there were scarce few people to be seen. Those that she had seen were sullen, sunken people, with eyes splotched red from tears, or exhaustion. Very few took in her or her steed with much of a reaction, which only served to pique her curiosity.

Around then, Daphne had come across the posters, and it was a miracle she hadn't spotted them sooner. There were so many of them that each and every poster after the last almost felt as it they'd been spurred into existence from nowhere, as if just noticing the first one had invoked the others. With a growing sense of unease, the SpiritCaster plodded up to the side of a building and snatched one of the posters, scrutinizing the young girl in the photo. Tragic, unfortunate news splashed across each and every sheet of paper, and the witch eventually put her poster back, continuing down the road in a thoughtful silence.

She didn't have all the pieces. Not yet, at least. She spurred her mount into action, and it trotted forward at a brisk pace, bringing her to where all roads eventually led. Daphne dismounted her steed, who quickly curled into a brilliant white plume of smoke that snaked into her body. She stepped up the two wooden stairs leading to the Sleeping Giant's front door. The Tavern was the starting place for all potential adventures, she recognized. Somebody inside would be able to provide some kind of insight.

Inside, however, the Tavern was as still as the rest of the town, and as she stood in the doorway, half-frozen with uncertainty, her purpose was forgotten for a second as she soaked in the scene. The usual patrons were probably gone, the few folks in the bar were likely travelers like herself. All the same, she took a slow, deep breath before she spoke up.

"Excuse me, but does anyone know anything about the posters? The missing children, I mean." Curse her dialect. She sounded more like a worried friend than a potential problem solver.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A woman's voice broke through Minda's train of thought, and she turned just a moment to look at whoever had spoken. The woman looked quite like a child, she noted, but did not carry herself like one. Nor did she refer to herself as one. Minda found herself not truly questioning it- she'd seen magic work in stranger ways. 

Any other time, she would have brushed the woman's concerns away and slipped back into her own world, but she was asking about the children- a topic Minda herself was worried about. And thus she shrugged. 

"I know very little. The people of the town do not wish to speak much of it, I believe."

Now that her attention had been redirected from the posters, she took another glance around the room. It seemed that while she'd been looking through them, one more had arrived besides the woman. He certainly gave off a more childlike air than the woman at the door, ironically. Had he ever actually had a drink before? His face suggested a hard no. The man from before seemed to still be in the same general position and posture he had been in when she first arrived. 

After that pause, she continued to speak. 

"There is talk of... ghosts, though. Things from children's stories. If you're going to investigate, I suggest you start there. I've often found that children's tales hold more than a grain of truth, if you know how to look."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

UGH. Gods and Titans this thing is repulsive. How do people drink this shit DAILY?!

Dan was broken out of his bubble of nasty tasting drinks, his ears pricking up after one sentence:

4 hours ago, Knighto said:

"There is talk of... ghosts, though. Things from children's stories. If you're going to investigate, I suggest you start there. I've often found that children's tales hold more than a grain of truth, if you know how to look."

 Things from children's stories. That raised all kinds of red flags for Dan. In his experience, old stories and myths were usually a LOT worse when they existed in real life. His stomach dropped like a lead weight. A lead weight with the most vile liquid in existence in it.
But ghosts? Ghosts don't kidnap children. Or eat them, or whatever the hell was happening. Maybe freak them out, but ghosts were incorporeal, they couldn't touch anything, unless they were poltergeists. But even then, those only stuck to one house.

Eager to distract himself from a mistake he regretted after sip 1, he turned to the Artemis-like woman. "What kind of children's stories? What goes on in them?"
Not being from here, Dan had very little of their culture memorized. Other than apparently, they worship Gaia. Dan wondered briefly in an ADHD tangent if it was the same Gaia from his world, and if it was, if these people were aware of the INCONCEIVABLY  large mistake they were making. Bigger even than ordering a drink that tasted like a pine tree pissed in a glass.
Dan snapped his head back to reality. "Uh, I'm from outta town. I don't know about kids' stories here."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Daphne sighed, pinching the bridge of her nose in annoyance before plodding into the bar. She'd somewhat hoped that the rest of the residents inside of the tavern had already ascertained the situation, and had made plans to approach it. That would have made it easier on the witch; she wouldn't have been expected to speak up all that much beyond that first interaction. Well, the alternative was to keep moving, and while she loathed the possibility of talking with others, she couldn't imagine leaving without attempting to investigate these missing children cases. Worse case scenario, it could be just like the orphanage, all over again. She didn't want that to happen, not if she could stop it.

Now, as her hooves clacked audibly across the boards, the sound accompanied by the gentle swish of her clothes as she moved, Daphne made her way towards the bar, her gait slowing by about a quarter pace halfway there. The chairs were all bigger than her, and sitting down many of the folk were taller than she was standing up. Color burned furiously in her cheeks as she realized they had to look down on her, but she hid it in the shade of her hat without incident. All the while, she took in the strange company they held with a few careful glances. They weren't all that unusual-looking, she found. One of them even looked quite young, like herself. Well, maybe not quite as young, but he certainly seemed like she could easily have been his grandmother. Maybe. The other gentleman in the room, furthest from the bar, looked quiet but comfy. She wondered briefly if he'd forgotten he was in a public space, putting up his shoes like that. Her mother would have slapped him upside the head if she was home...or at least, Daphne assumed she would. Besides the bartender and the gentleman drinking himself into a stupor at the bar, the only other person in the bar was the woman who spoke up when she arrived. Daphne steeled herself for conversation and walked over to the woman's side, staring up at her, then at the posters that lined the walls. 

"You're not a local." She remarked matter of factly. "You very obviously don't have any connection to these kids beyond this poster here. Were you planning on doing...something?" Her train of thought failed her at the end, and she came off quite standoffish, to her dismay. She'd rather have friendly acquaintances than hostile ones, after all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Acreanda jumped out of his seat, "Are you guys are looking for the missing children too?" Acreanda said in his southern accent. Acreanda was now running around the room like a child. He could definitely be mistaken for a child. Acreanda pulled out a map from his pocket. He threw it up, and let it float to the ground. Acreanda's gun popped up and he grabbed it. He then shot a dagger onto one of the points on the map. "There's a library right there," Acreanda said. He felt amazing. Acreanda thought that would definitely impress his new friends. "The name's Acreanda by the way," Acreanda said in a friendly manner. Acreanda knew a little bit about this town. He wasn't going to walk into a strange town without knowing a little about the place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Questions everywhere, suddenly. Before she could answer any of them, the giddy man from before began to... run around? And his method of marking the map he had was certainly something odd. How many times could one damage a map before it fell apart? But he clearly knew at least a little more about the town than the rest of them did. It wouldn't do to be rude at the moment.

She cleared her throat after his display, deciding to respond to that and then to the questions she had been asked. 

".... Acreanda? A.... pleasure to meet you. A library... I suppose you point that out to find the kids stories? Certainly a good place to start."

Clearing her throat again, she began with the other questions she'd been asked. 

"I myself am also from out of town, and unfortunately don't know anything about those stories. As for whether or not I plan on doing something... I couldn't leave without trying to help, now could I? All these missing children.... it's serious business."

She paused, trying to think of whether she'd missed anything, and decided she hadn't. Her statement was fairly hypocritical though, wasn't it? She was sure she rarely actually stopped to help in towns like these unless children were in danger. 

"I'm Minda, by the way. Minda Ainet. And all of you, besides Acreanda, are...?"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dan was mildly impressed with the short guy who looked a lot like a dwarf. His over the top nonsense was reminiscent of Apollo kids who tried too hard.
A library.... Wasn't that the place where they hand out books for free, but you have to take them back? Lame. But, that would be where to look for kids' stories.

Dan took another sip, forced down the disgust, unclenched his toes, and, not to be outdone, threw his legs over his head, pushed with his arms, vaulted over the table, flipped once in the air, and landed on his feet with the grace of a cat.
"I am Dan Palmer Nice to meet you."

Dan hoped that was as impressive as he thought it was.
"I am indeed looking for the missing kids. Well, I am now."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Daphne flinched as the once-silent character, sitting in his seat, leapt into action, jumping and dashing and shooting and...throwing knives? Quickly her attention was pulled from the girl she'd been approaching, towards the unnecessary display of finesse. Her hand gripped an unseen object, and in a moment's notice an eerie lantern materialized in her grasp. A singular socket in the lantern held a bloodshot, eerie-looking human eye, which darted about the room, trying to fixate on the moving targets. His spiel came to a stop too soon, however, and the witch relaxed. Her lantern returned, and while she was certain nobody saw it, her eye returned to its rightful place in her head once more. Daphne sighed in exasperation as the folk all introduced themselves, one after another, with their unexpected acrobat introducing himself first, then the girl she'd approached, and then...

Daphne pinched the bridge of her nose in frustration, praying that she didn't have a headache coming on from all this jumping about. The only unnamed character in the bar leapt from his table in a similar display of...something, she supposed, before announcing his name. Splendid.

Well, she'd gotten an answer to her questions, at least. There were more than a select few folks looking for the missing children, and she supposed she'd count herself as one of their ranks. She had half a mind to introduce herself, but cast that aside. Her name wasn't important, after all. She didn't expect them to remember her, and she actually wouldn't mind too much if she never had attention called to her. The SpiritCaster stepped forward, brushing a loose strand of hair from her face. Her hooves clopped against the floorboards once gain, almost like a gavel calling for order.

"Well, it seems we all share a common purpose." She acknowledged with a calm, confident prose. She cast her glance towards character number one.

"Acreanda, right? While I appreciate you supplying us with a map, why would we start with a library of all places?" She asked with a pointed stare at the map. "Were this another matter, I might understand going to study, but surely there are other places in town we might want to start with?" Daphne herself wasn't too familiar with the town, so she couldn't be quite sure how the little backwoods Doughton worked. Maybe she was missing some key element.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"I was thinking we could go to the library to look at the stories, but I assume we could ask some of the children directly," Acreanda said in response. Acreanda grabbed some of the posters off the wall. "Maybe then we could ask the kid's parents," Acreanda said holding up the posters. He couldn't wait to get this started. Acreanda walked out the door. "Do any of you have any mode of transportation?" Acreanda said looking at his partners. Acreanda then just started walking. He was sure someone would answer soon. He saw a kid right outside. The kid looked ruff. He had ripped clothes and a dirty face. "Have you heard anything about the missing children," Acreanda said as he walked up closer. As he thought about it, it was weird for a kid to be out in the streets alone. 

Edited by SixShots22

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The man ran out before she could get another word in, and Minda let out an almost pained sigh. Impulsive and impatient. It was not a good combination for this type of investigation, was it? 

"The library actually was a good idea. If one was to find the stories, in print, it would give us a good idea of what we're dealing with that is supposedly... appearing."

She glanced at the door, biting back another, more irritated sigh. She liked to handle mysteries slowly, not jump in headfirst. But that was exactly what it looked like they were doing.

"We're... going to end up following him, aren't we?"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Dan watched as the short man ran outside to talk to a kid. He was pretty sure that didn't look the best. A short bearded man running out of a bar with the express intent of talking to kids about something that makes kids disappear. At this rate Acreanda was going to get them all arrested.

"Yeah, probably. But hey, once we find out whats going on, it'll be easy." He gestured to himself. "We got a kid right here. Primo trap material. I mean, who could resist a face and coolness like this? Certainly no kidnapping ghost."
Dan walked outside after Acreanda, ready to do damage control if need be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Daphne sighed, watching Acreanda and Dan walk on outside. She was still standing next to Minda, having not moved from her original position in the bar during the events that had unfolded. She cast another glance up at her taller counterpart before she raised and eyebrow and spoke her mind.

"He is the one with the map, right? I don't think we have too much choice on what course of action to take." Despite her words, she didn't move an inch. She was still slowly processing the scene that'd been laid before them. Between the four of them, only one of them had map awareness, only one of them appeared anything like a trustworthy adult, and the rest of them almost looked like lost children themselves. Though Daphne disliked talking as though she herself fit into that category, she could only lie so much; she had a very petite figure, one easily mistook for a much younger girl at a mere glance. Between her and Dan, the other two characters might as well have been babysitting. Daphne forced that last thought down like acid reflux, shaking her head in disgust. She wasn't a baby.

To her credit, non of them had actually called attention to her figure. In fact, the young man who'd followed their peculiar guide out of the building had referred to himself as a kid, leaving her completely out of the loop. For that she was grateful.

Daphne then recalled that they'd gone out to head for the library already, and opted to be the next one to boldly follow in his steps. Slowly trotting out the door, she paused in the doorframe at the sight of a muddied, disgruntled-looking little girl. The witch scrutinized her carefully, and found that the girl just wasn't familiar. Her face hadn't been on any of the posters she'd seen so far, certainly, and as far as she could tell, neither Dan nor Acreanda knew her, either. Was she one of the lost girls, then? Something about the situation didn't feel quite right to her, and that gut feeling was rarely wrong for the witch. With an uncertain step back, she cast a glance over at the other woman to keep her in the loop. 

"There's a girl out here...a little girl."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...