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A small village about 3 days away from the city of Salezmind in Nordland has been the setting and location of a bloody raid by the beastmen of chaos. A small warband had broken down the gates of the once peaceful village and slaughtered many of its townspeople. Among the survivors are a group of teenagers who have barely become adults. They had lost all of their family during the desperate fighting to repel the raiders and now have the horrible and depressing task of locating the bodies of their family members and giving them a burial. Those alive would set about their work singing burial songs and saying prays to Moor to take their loved ones into his arms and watch over them. Among the dead humans would be the odd beastman's corpse. They would be horrible to look at, goat and sheep like heads with long curved horns and legs which end in wicked looking hooves. In the village there would be some burial pyres for those in the village who wish to burn their dead instead of bury them.

Modeus would be stood infront of a funeral pyre as he watches its blazing yellow and amber light engulf and consume the body of his father. He would be completely silent as he watches the body slowly burn and turn to ash. For most of his life he resented his father for being mean to him and often beating him and calling him the bane of his life. But now all he felt was sorrow and anger. Sorrow for the fact that his only family was now lying lifeless infront of him and now in the arms of Moor, and Anger for those who took his father away from him, the beastmen of chaos. Modeus would slowly curl his hands into fists as he mutters a quick pray to Moor and turning away from the pyre and walks off to the town center as he hears the Town Mayor call out for everyone to gather.

Nysard: You could be on the eastern side of the village slowly dragging the bodies of your family with the help of another member of the village to a funeral pyre which has been set up. You feel a sense of great lose and cant help but weep at the lose of your entire family. You would get the feeling you should stay and watch over the bodies of your family while muttering a pray to Moor to help send on the souls of your loved ones.

Anna: As you rush about the village asking crying villages carrying the dead where your family is you would find your house. The front door had been completely smashed in and lays in splinters and pieces infront of you. As you enter building you see the sight you didnt want to see...The three corpses of your Father, Mother and Younger brother. The body of your father would be infront of the other two corpse and his head would be around 2 feet from his body. Your mother and brothers body would been laying in a large pool of blood they had clearly been stabbed then left for dead by the beastmen as they destroyed everything else within the house. The sense of pain, loss and grief would be overwhelming.

Alfred: You could collapse to your knee's at the sight of your home burning knowing that your entire family had hid in the cellar to escape the beastmen. What they hadn't expected was the beastmen to set the building alight after they had finished pillaging it. As you knee there infront of the burning building you feel extreme sadness and would feel you should of stayed with them, atleast that way you would of been with your family in death and not have to spend the rest of your days without them.

Fredrick: You would run straight to your families home to see if they are still alive. As you reach the door you can see it has been torn off its hinges and cast aside like a plaything. As you enter the building you find your mother in the corner of the room with a knife in her hand and her left wrist slit. She had taken her own life rather than be killed and her body mutilated by the hands of the beastmen. You feel you should bury your mother than run to your fathers forge to see if he is still alive. As you reach the forge you see a huge beastman laying on his front with a sword sticking out of it, clearly been stabbed from the front, under the beastman however you see a human arm. The hand on the arm is palm upwards and has burn marks from years of handling hot metal, you realize it is your father and should get the beast off of him so you can bury him, as you do so you feel even more grief than finding your mother, as your father had taught you everything you know.

Dieter: You wouldn't at all be affected by all the dead of villages around you as you have no family hear and come from elsewhere. As you go about the village many doors have been left open as the villages bury their dead, the perfect opportunity to steal any items of value. As you enter the first building you hear someone gently call out from inside, it is a old man with an arrow in his lower chest. He holds out a hand to you, atleast wanting to be close to someone as he passes on. He continues to call out to you to come closer.

Heinrich: As you awake your head feels like you had been kicked by a warhorse with a extremely pad temper. You can see survivors about you crying and carrying the dead to funeral pyres. You then remember your father was killed near the gate and you should go search for him. As you search among the dead being taken away you find him, as you find your father he would be laying face down in the mud with a rusty sword sticking out of his back which had pierced his heart. You are overcome by grief at the dead of your father and feel nothing but hatred for the beastmen and wish that Ulric should smite them down without mercy or hesitation. You then have the choice of either burning your father or burying him so that maybe one day you could visit his grave again.

The Major of the town calls out for all the villages together after they have burnt or bury their dead. As the remaining villages assemble he starts his speech on how they should all remain thankful they are alive, that they should try to forget the tragedies that happened during the night and should move on and think of the future. They should rebuild and repopulate.
 

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Alfred ran towards the smoking ruins of the inn. He knew his parents would have hidden in the cellar when the beastmen attacked - they may still be there, trapped under the fallen rubble.

As he got closer, he could feel the heat of the fire burn away the hair on his forearms. There was an acrid taste to the smoke - something bitter sweet, with deep earthy undertones. In that moment he knew - the fire had reached the kegs in the cellar. There would be no point in even trying to open the cellar hatch - all it would have taken was a spark, and his parents refuge had become their funeral pyre.

He sank wearily to his knees in the middle of the road, heedless of the survivors flowing around him as they looked for loved ones. He was utterly alone.

From somewhere deep in his memory, he recalled the hymn the priests of Morr had sung at his grandmother's funeral ten years earlier. The square fell quiet as his deep baritone voice echoed amongst the ruins:

From too much love of living,
From hope and fear set free.
We thank with due thanksgiving,
All the gods that be.
That nothing lasts for ever,
That dead men rise up never,
And even the mightiest river
Winds somewhere safe to sea...

As the last note died away he put his head to the floor and wept.
 

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It was horrible, all of it was horrible, Nysard could not imagine a worse fate, be left alone stripped from any family, it was like stripping a man from his own life. Slowly dragging his family's corpses Nysard felt like an empty husk, he could not think, he could not see straight, and he could not breath good. With sheer power of will and determination to at least give his parents a good funeral Nysard continue dragging the corpses. He reached a pyre which was raised on the east side of the village. He had to remain strong, he had to avenge the death of his family, he had to take vengeance on the force which guided this horrible creation to his village and family... He had to...

Nysard slowly picked his father's corpse, walking towards the pyre, as he got close he felt the heat around him, the flames leaking his boots, yet he did not feel the pain, the grief was to much for him. He laid his fathers corpse in the pyre, burning his own hands but feeling nothing, he then came back to his dead mother picking her and doing the same process again.

As he finished he watched his family burn, and in mere moments they were not there, all memory of them has been erased from the world, leaving nothing but Nysard to carry their existence and memories with him. He tried, he tried really hard but could not stop the tears, he fell on his knees, cursing and swearing at the gods, he cried like never before, but as the tears dried out he could smile again, their memories shall live within him forever but whats dead is dead and should not be mentioned again. Yet he could not bring himself to stand up, he heard the village's major calling for everyone, telling them how they need to forget, to rebuild, to repopulate, but Nysard just couldn't, he will not be able to live here anymore. He stayed at his place near the pyre feeling its heat as the fire raged with an endless storm, it was amazing, beautiful, wild, it was the essence of life itself, and it gave Nysard the strength to go on...
 

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Dragging himself through the filth, Heinrich stumbled his way through the chaos and wreckage of the village. "They will pay" Heinrich repeated over and over to himself as he made his way to the shattered remains of the gatehouse.

His head, already pounding from the blow he took to his head, swam as he picked his way through the corpses to his father's body.

Grief, shame, anger, revenge. All these emotions vied for control over Heinrich until finaly he settled on a mixture of them all.

Removing the beastman's knife, Heinrich picked his burly father's corpse up and made his way to a small clearing, away from sobs and grieving of the survivors. Gathering some wood from the gatehouse, Heinrich made a pyre of his own and worked diligently until finally he set his father's corpse upon the pyre and lit it.

"Ulric, Lord of Battle, welcome my father to the hunting halls and know that the dishonorable scum that laid him low shall know my vengence." Heinrich said out loud, hoping the God of Winter would hear him.

Heinrich stayed long until finally the roaring fire died down to ashes and embers. Even then, Heinrich stayed in that same spot until the sun had begun to set.

Moving back into the village, Heinrich was somewhat thankful his mother had left his father and him when he was young, for he did not know if he would have been able to burn both his parent's.

As he moved through the wreckage towards the village center, he listened as the mayor spewed garbage of forgetting what had happened and simply moving on to rebuild. Baring his teeth, Heinrich barely resisted the impulse to kill the coward.

Shaking his head, Heinrich knew he could not and would not stay here any longer.

Moving outside the pallisade, Heinrich stood for what seemed like an eternity, looking at the sky, waiting for a sign of what he would do
 

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Blood surges through my veins and bulbous arteries, torquing and binding my barely tamed musculature; flushing away doubt and fear, instilling only anxiety and forge-tempered vengeance to my mind. Mother... Father, amongst the carnage, where are you?

His youth earned him ire and the typical slandering from the older folk of the village. It was traditional. The strong preyed upon the weak, those with a bundle of summers to their name, to those with a strand, an iron brand to a steel edged claymore. Gaping strides ploughed through the mud of the street, holes filled by greying rainwater almost instantly. His pace chewed up the yards to his household, though the pain in his thighs was akin to sprinting a league with a white-hot poker dashed between them. A Blacksmith- a Blacksmith's apprentice - clad within the common attire of a leather gambeson speckled with ash, running at full pelt down a village market was unusual indeed. Such occurrences would no-doubt enhance the boring drudgery of a peasant's daily life, and doing so would likely earn him a chorus of curses aimed and he and his forge.

But not today.

No abuse ratcheted from the Inn, no drunkards coughing through equally drunk maws, singing of their triumphs of old. But instead a midst of sorrow, of quiet had descended upon them all. Fredrick could hear the moaning of brothers, of sons. The wailing of wives and sisters. The acrid stench of smoke. Timber smoke. Living one's life within a forge, your almost palatable sense of smell grows accustomed to the variations of smoke: Iron, lead, tin, copper, even gold. All bitter and dense. But timber smoke was fragrant, aromatic and nostalgic of the golden season's after the Fall.

Timber smoke also heralded fire, and that was almost always intertwined with death.

'Mah?... Mother?' he called out, his voice guttural from the unnatural flotsam rife within his lungs. He chocked, 'Father?' He shambled through the door, the panels clawed and broken. 'Nay, he would be within the `Blade, `wastin his time upon `is damn anvil. Bloody `ol fool...' his smoke-scarred voice trailed off, as he fumbled through the carnage. He gasped- a wretched scraping sound, before vomiting the contents of his paltry breakfast across the floor.

Upon all fours, tendrils of saliva beading from his chin, he crawled towards the corpse of his mother. Pale, orange-hued in the haze of fire. Deathlike. Warm and yet cold. Her body was perfect, a portrait of life, even in death, only her wrist nicked by a precise cut, spattered by congealing crimson.

'M-mah` I... i'll be back, yes? I'll give you a good `n proper buriel, promise? A goodun, blessed by sacred Morr and Sigmar- and the Wolf Lord `course. `Pah would see to that, being a northerner `an all' he chuckled bleaky, before reeling backwards. His father was not here, but at his Forge, a prime target by those barbarous goat-men, to steel blades and processed ingots; weapons to fuel their ungodly struggle against the Empire.

Fredrick clubbed his way through the jetsam seeking to block his passageway, as he bolted through the door, pounding through the puddles and cart-worn cobbles towards The Cloven Blade. His legs pounded the slate, pumping up and down like brazen pistons, similar to the mechanical theatrics within Nuln. His vision became clearer: The Forge, a lowly, squat building, dominated by a towering chimney, its walls hung about with a plethora of blades, horse-shoes, axe-heads, trinkets and chains. His Father's anvil, a thrice-blessed block of tempered iron, lay face-down, broken, across the ground. A beast who's very existence was a spite to nature, a prayer to the Dark God's was impaled to the anvil. A colossal blade driven through it's skull, deep into one of the many tempering grooves within the block, shivered from the rain. It's nocked edge and tarnished hilt the epitome of the destruction wrought upon his family and the pride of his livelihood.

'Pah? Na... No, it can't be you. You wouldn` die, leave me alone? No, `tis a cruel joke, an annoying dream.. You can't be dead. How will I survive, make `ends-meat? I can fix `an horse-shoe, fine a blade, sharpen a scythe, that's all. The `Blade will die, just... like you... I'll bury you. You and `Mah, together somewhere nice `n alone. In the hills, or the forest. Somewhere you woulda` liked...' and he wept aloud for the loss of his father, slamming his hands repeatedly into the muck, grime roiling down his body. But he didn't care; his present was in ruination, his future tatters.
 

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Dieter had run like the rest. He had run for his life. On the way, he had "picked up" a few supplies; survival gear and some smoked mutton, and a small bag of gold. It would keep him alive. There was more wealth in the village, still, that Dieter would never be able to get to. More he could plunder. After all, why shouldn't he? He had survived. He was the stronger, so he deserved it. Anyway, the dead had no claim over their possessions. They were dead, after all. Fools, anyway, thought Dieter, to not have run away when they had the chance. Bravery. Heroics, Dieter sniffed, in other words ways to get yourself killed.

As Dieter eventually returned to the village, he saw it was empty. Just full of the dead. Survivors were trickling in to find loved ones, but now was Dieter's moment. Striding towards the main square, Dieter kept an eye out for valuable items. Then he saw it. The jewellery shop. A perfect opportunity.

Dieter crept forward, pleased to notice the door had been smashed apart. All of the items that had been on display were destroyed; but Dieter knew the best items were hidden in the vault, under the counter. Looking underneath the oak desk, Dieter cursed when he saw it was intact. He needed the key. Dieter began searching amongst the smashed possessions, over-turned stools, and broken glass. It was nowhere. Dieter had almost given up when he heard a soft cry; an old man called from next door. Sneaking inside, Dieter saw the man; the owner of the shop, with an arrow in his chest, holding his hands out to Dieter. Dieter smiled as he noticed the key on the man's belt. Creeping forward, with an expression of concern on his face, Dieter spoke to the dying man;

"I am so sorry, sir." said Dieter, laughing inside, "But I'm afraid... I need that key." Dieter lunged for it, and grabbed it. The man tried to resist, but only succeeded in showing Dieter his beautiful gold ring. "Oh, and I'll be needing that as well." said Dieter, wrenching the ring off the man's hand. He collapsed onto the floor, and Dieter, in a moment of rare pity, delivered a mercy stroke with one of his long, serrated knives. Slipping the ring into his pocket, Dieter hurried back to the vault. Slotting in the key, Dieter lifted the latch away. He swore when he saw it had already been emptied; the only thing left was a little pile of coins. Scooping up the coins and depositing them in his bag, Dieter trudged out of the store, kicking a bucket as he went.

The only other place Dieter could think of was the butchers, but by the looks of things the beastmen had already looted that. So Dieter simply sat, sulkily, in the village square. He wondered where everyone would head next.
 

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Anna walked towards the village after being out in the forest and saw smoke above the village, and started to run towards it.
When she got to the village she figured out something had attacked it, and asked the first villages he came across that muttered something
about beastmen. Anna sighed, since she new they would be merciless. She then started to look for her family, walking around asking villages, but no one had seen them
in a while. As Anna got to her own house she noticed the door was broken so she ran in and saw the bodies of her brother, father and mother and fell to the floor
crying. She then got out of the house, and decided to burn the house, since it was ruined anyway.

Anna then walked to the nearest fire and took a piece of burning wood and tossed it in the house. After watching the flames engulf the house, she walked away and collapsed a little while after that. When she got up she walked away to find her friends.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
As the group bury their dead they would be called to the center of town while the mayor does his speech about moving on. If they looked carefully they could see each other through the crowd.

Modeus would be stood in the front row, the others could easily tell it is him due to his raven black hair and his long black scarf and gold coloured trim clothing. He would be facing away from all of them as he listens to the Major then turns his curls his hands into fists and calls out to the major. "Why should we stay here and cower, pretend nothing has happened! We should be out in the wood in hunting parties killing every last one of those damned creatures that did this! Or is it because you were barely affected your royal pompousness!? Bah! To hell with you all! im leaving this pathetic village to hunt down the ones who did this! Im heading to Salezmund to gather support and proper equipment then i shall hunt them down!". With Modeus's own shocking speech his turns around and pushes his way through the crowd and heads off towards the gate. His fathers old sword sheathed at his waist and his backpack on his back.

Nysard, Anna, Alfred, Fredrick, Heinrich: You would see and here your friend Modeus shout to the villages and the mayor that they should hunt down the beastmen before telling them they are all pathetic and proclaims that he is heading to Salezmund. You feel like you should go with Modeus because there is nothing left in the village for you, and atleast you still have your friends left.

Dieter: You would hear the one called Modeus's little speech and feel it best to go with him about as far as Salezmund, some protection would be useful while you head to the capital of Nordland, though those going with him may not trust you at all.
 

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Nysard could hear the town's major speech, it was just in raging, he knew that the major was unharmed, non of his family suffered. How could he tell them to rebuild, repopulate and forget all of it, his ignorance was just infuriating. Nysard knew he will leave the village, he did not want anything with this place, he could not return here, never, never again. As he was about to step away and head to Salezmund, he heard Modeus, one of his childhood friends speaking, he gave a speech, it was full of rage, sadness, and anger, he called out to the major and said, "Why should we stay here and cower, pretend nothing has happened! We should be out in the wood in hunting parties killing every last one of those damned creatures that did this! Or is it because you were barely affected your royal pompousness!? Bah! To hell with you all! I'm leaving this pathetic village to hunt down the ones who did this! I'm heading to Salezmund to gather support and proper equipment then i shall hunt them down!"

Nysard was amazed, he never seen Modeus so passionate about something, it was inspiring, it was a sight to behold. As he finished hes speech he violently broke through the crowd heading to the towns gate, "I guess vengeance shall be mind after all!". Going towards Modeus, Nysard quickly caught up with him, at first Modeus didn't recognize him, he was blinded by hate and fear, he tried to push Nysard away as he thought he was trying to stop him, but Nysard caught his hand, Modeus looked at Nysard and after a moment recognized him.

"I shall come with you, I was about to leave this cursed place anyway. Lets head out together, hunt does things and take our revenge!", he said. Nysard pat on Modeus's back, "Be strong my friend, be strong!".
 

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Alfred listened to the Major in disbelief. From where he stood, he could see the Major framed against the imposing bulk of his townhouse, while all around him was a smoking ruin. Apart from the forge, it was the only stone building in the village - no wonder it had survived with little damage apart from a few broken window panes. And no doubt the Major and his family had hidden in their own cellar - but theirs wasn't a deathtrap filled with volatile spirits, waiting for a stray spark to ignite them...

Alfred shook his head and spat, absently noticing that his spittle was black from the smoke. He heard someone urging the people to hunt down the beastmen and make them pay, but did not recognise their voice at first - it was only when he pushed through the people in front of him that he could see it was Modeus. At least someone was talking sense - what was the point in rebuilding a ghost town? As far as he was concerned the best thing they could do would be to abandon the gods-forsaken place.

He watched Modeus turn on his heel, wondering if he should follow. Then he saw Nysard go after their friend and his mind was made up; he pushed his way through the crowd behind his two friends, running a little to catch up. He watched Nysard grab Modeus's arm, then clap him on the back before they walked on out of the village, but he was still too far behind to hear their conversation.

When he finally caught them, he slipped between his two friends and put an arm around each of their shoulders.

"Come on, lets do this. The three of us against the world - starting with those damned abominations!"

Even as he said it, he could hear other footsteps on the road behind them. It would not be just the three of them after all...
 

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As Heinrich waited outside the gate, thankful that the mayor had finally shut up, he heard an impassioned voice ring out through the crowd.

"Why should we stay here and cower, pretend nothing has happened! We should be out in the wood in hunting parties killing every last one of those damned creatures that did this! Or is it because you were barely affected your royal pompousness!? Bah! To hell with you all! im leaving this pathetic village to hunt down the ones who did this! Im heading to Salezmund to gather support and proper equipment then i shall hunt them down!".

Turning his head, Heinrich looked for the man who had just spoke. Modeus. Surprised, Heinrich could hardly believe it was him who had spoke out. Though they barely knew each other when they were kids, Heinrich heard stories about Modeus's father from his own father and none of them painted a good picture for Modeus

As Heinrich watched Modeus begin walking away, he saw 2 figures approach and begin following him

Nysard and Alfred.

Heinrich couldn't help but wonder why the young woodcutter and that innkeeper's son would think they would be able to accomplish anything against the beastmen. They were not warriors. He was the only surviving warrior left.

It was then that Heinrich's warrior pride spoke to him. He knew that the group would surely be slaughtered without him and it reminded him of his vengence he needed. "By Ulric, I will help them." Heinrich said

Walking in front of the the group and sheathed his sword and met each of the men's eyes in turn

"I am Heinrich Siezedorf. You three need a warrior if you even have a hope of slaying the beastmen. I am that warrior. I shall join you and slaughter the cursed beastkin so that the dead may have their vengence" Heinrich said matter-of-factly
 

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I heard shouts, and a general commotion. It seemed to be coming from Modeus - that irksome `tard. I paced through the muk; padding through the filth of death, piqued by the fickle whims of the elements. Rain and death, hand-in-hand brothers. So typical, so cliche, so true...

...

...

I arrived, my gambeson stained, my boots sodden, my mind flensed of every emotion; filled with hate, revenge but sensual loss the dampener of these fiery feelings. I miss `Pah, how will the Forge survive?

...


''I... I'll come, then. `Mah would `prove, `course. Besides... whats left for me `ere? The `Blade gone `an all. Yes, I`ll join you Modeus,' his tone was low, somber. He could barely walk, let alone stand. He was a defeated man, no- a Blacksmith's apprentice. He would not let his father's legacy wither and turn to dust. He rose with a bellow- 'Yes! I'll hunt down this goat-headed barbarians. Fix some `eads upon the door of the `Blade, now its mine `an all...'
 

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Dieter's interest was suddenly and unexpectedly piqued by a fellow named Modeus. He was unmistakeable, with his fancy-pancy black and gold clothing. He gave some speech about heroics, honour, and vengeance. What a load of bullshit, thought Dieter, and he was about ready to dismiss Modeus as a total fool when he mentioned Salezmund. Salezumnd, eh? thought Dieter, I guess I do need to get out of this dump, and if any more sad sops follow Modeus, they'll prove a perfect way of getting out without being killed by a beastman. A plan began to form in Dieter's head. He would accompany the party of revenge-driven bumpkins, and then when they reached Salezmund... he would get back in business.

"Yeah. I'm in. I'll go." Dieter said, just chucking the words out like a damp flannel, "Kill off the dirty scum and all that." Dieter really couldn't care less about avenging the village; he only cared that it was his ticket out of it. Dieter adopted a cocky swagger as he sauntered over to where Modeus and his assorted odd-jobs were congregating, and gave a swinging nod in his direction, lazily waving his hand to show he was coming. Dieter was well-equipped for a hike, and it would prove a nice change of scene.

And Dieter was willing to bet anything that Salezmund was full of various valuables, too. It all sounded too easy.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Modeus would stop as his friends all come running up to him and tell them they would join him. Modeus would give them all a slight smile then notices someone unknown come up and join the group. He tilts his head as he looks at Dieter. "Do you lose family during the attack aswell? i guess so otherwise you wouldnt be joining. Im Modeus". Modeus would then extend his hand to Dieter to shake his hand before turning and walking out of the gate with the rest of the group.

As the group walks along the small forest trial the sun would slowly be coming up and they can see their way better. It would be atleast two days before they reach Salezmund where they could gather supplies and gather support to hunt down the beastmen. As they were walking along the path Modeus would still be infront of the group with Heinrich and Nysard by his side.

Modeus would stare straight ahead as he talks to Heinrich, Alfred and Nysard. "Im sorry to hear about the lose of your families my friends, but we will avenge them even if it costs us our lives, even if we do die in the process then atleast we will be with them in the afterlife."

Alfred: You would be just behind Modeus, Heinrich and Nysard. You would be thinking of what you could do after avenging your families death. Would you settle down in Salezmund and try and open your own Inn/Tavern? or would you like to travel the world with your friends going off on Adventures like you and your friends always dreamed off.

Fredrick, Anna and Dieter: You two would be at the back of the group with Anna. You wouldnt really have much to talk about so there is an awkward silence for awhile until one of you gets the courage to talk to each other. Oddly it is Anna who is the one to pluck up the courage to talk to you two.
 

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OOC: sorry for short post, but I didn't have much to work with :p

IC:

Nysard walked right next to Modeus, Alfred, and Heinrich, except them also Fredrick and Anna joined. He never thought so many will join them. There was one new fellow, Nysard was sure that he never saw him in town before his name was Dieter. As they were walking down the road towards Salezmund Modeus said, "I'm sorry to hear about the lose of your families my friends, but we will avenge them even if it costs us our lives, even if we do die in the process then at least we will be with them in the afterlife.". Nysard looked at Modeus he saw the hatred and pain in his eyes, he knew that what he will say will hurt Modeus but he had to state it so he said, "Modeus, don't say that it will cost our lives, we shall be happy that we are still alive, lets kill those bastards and live to tell about it!".
There was still a long walk until Salezmund but Nysard walked with his friends and maybe the journy wont be as grim as he expected.
 

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Alfred hung back, wanting time to think. He realised that he was crying again - but not for himself this time. His parents were dead, and the inn was gone, and he would have his revenge on the beastmen; that was simple. He was crying now for the people left in the village who could not (or more likely would not) accept the enormity of what had happened.

Everything had changed. Sure, life in the village had been hard; sometimes it had even been dangerous. Old Farmer Brecht could attest to that - he had lost his left foot when a snake spooked the draft horses and the plough ran over his leg. But raids by beastmen or northern marauders were always one of those things that happened to someone else. Sometimes the militia would be called out to help defend a neighbouring village, and more often than not fewer of them would come back. But you never thought it would happen to you. Now it had, but those fools listening to the mayor wouldn't admit it.

He knew his father had wanted him to keep the inn going if anything happened to him. But there wasn't an inn for him to keep going. He supposed he could set up somewhere else - surely it would be easier to buy an inn in another town, instead of building a new one from the ground up. But he had no idea how much an inn would cost to buy - he only knew that it would be far more than the few silver shillings he had in his purse.

The other option was to take to the road, earning his living as a travelling bard. He had always dreamed of that life, living on his wits and singing for his supper, but he never thought it would really happen. He hated himself for thinking it, but it was only now he had lost everything that his dreams had a chance of coming true...
 

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Dieter reached the group, and realised suddenly that they all knew each other. Dieter was an outsider, a rouge; and he didn't want to avenge his family. His only reason for being here was greed, and he was sure nobody else would quite see his point. When Modeus walked up to him and asked him about his family, Dieter immediately put on a heart-broken voice:

"We were only travelling through. Just for one day. And then on that damned day, the beastmen attacked. I curse any gods that there are for pissing on me like that, and I'll damned-well kill the monsters responsible." said Dieter, with convincing realism. He took Modeus' hand and shook it warmly. When the man eventually turned away, Dieter wrinkled his nose and wiped his hand on his leather coat.

Dieter fell into line at the back, hoping to avoid any attention and just to walk on unhindered. The sun was rising above the trees, and a beautifully scenic forest trail was revealed. Dieter snorted. He preferred the cold feeling of gold in his pocket to a pansy forest walk. Still, he guessed he would have to bear it; it was the only way to reach Salezmund. And anyway, Dieter was sure something exciting would happen on the journey anyway. Peaceful journeys through the forest are never peaceful for long.
 

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Heinrich fell into step with Modeus and the newly arrived memebers of their party. A scowl crossed his face at the sight of Deiter. Although he was never identified, Deiter matched the description passed through the militia of the thief that had stolen quite a large sum of items throughout the village

After a while, Heinrich heard Modeus adress them solemnly

"Im sorry to hear about the lose of your families my friends, but we will avenge them even if it costs us our lives, even if we do die in the process then atleast we will be with them in the afterlife."

Nodding his head in agreement, Heinrich grimly accepted Modeus's words.

"Aye, that we will. A thousand beastmen will taste my blade before my vengence will be satisfied!" Heinrich proudly boasted
 

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Alfred woke from his reverie when he heard Modeus talking to the newcomer. He didn't mean to eavesdrop, but the newcomer's heartbroken voice cut through his thoughts like a knife.

"We were only travelling through. Just for one day. And then on that damned day, the beastmen attacked. I curse any gods that there are for pissing on me like that, and I'll damned-well kill the monsters responsible."

There was something wrong there. No-one stopped in the village just for one day. Most people avoided even that. Oh, occasionally coachmen stopped at the inn for two nights to give the horses a day's rest, but there had been no sign of a coach in the burnt out shell of his home. Besides, he had left to pick up the ale an hour before dawn, and there were no guests at the inn. No one in their right mind would have travelled overnight - and with a beastman raiding party in the hills, he doubted they would have made it if they tried.

For some reason the boy had to be lying to them about losing his family. Alfred couldn't imagine why someone would make up a story like that, but there had to be a reason. Maybe Heinrich would know.
 

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Fredrick's mind was embroiled in emotion. He couldn't think straight; everything was intent on revenge, but he, himself was not one who cared for violent means. His lengthy pace kept him in step with the group, but he fell behind Modeus quickly. The rearguard consisted of himself, Anna and Dieter - of whom only Dieter seemed talkative.

He spoke something to himself, most likely related to the self-proclaimed leader: Modeus. Fredrick sighed, gazing out listlessly to the wavering tree's, snapping their branches against Winter's forthcoming onslaught.

'... Winter, 'Pah's favorite season...' he fiddled with his belt, drawing one of his hammers and swinging it in steady arcs. 'You two, seem... quite today...' he spoke.
 
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