Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Arrhythmia: A Story of Judgments
Arrhythmia: A Story of Judgments

Chapter 1: The Family

[Image: 0YqwVhh.png]
A dog and a spider stand in front of a tall cabin on the outskirts of town. An emblem of a broken heart rests above the entrance. 
The spider, Arabis, was particularly nervous about this despite Zinnia's efforts all day to ease him in. He was about to meet their family so to speak.
He was being taken home. 
Arabis: Are you sure I should be here? I'd rather avoid stirring the pot if I could.
Zinnia: Why would you do that?
Arabis: Fiends like myself have a lot of stigma around them, I do not want to cause trouble.
Zinnia: You're not going to cause any issues, relax.
Zinnia walked up to the door holding Arabis' hand tight. The spider did their best not to pull away. 
They knocked on the door with a distinct pattern. 
Zinnia: I'm back from the job! I got a lot to talk about, brought someone home with me!
???: Hold up! I'm handling something-
There was a loud crash from inside the cabin.
Zinnia: Are you okay in there?
???: Yeah just-

[Image: x4szrIP.png]
The door was unlocked and pulled open. A short cat immediately tackled Zinnia with a hug. 
???: I heard about what went down! The whole town burned, we thought you were a goner!
Zinnia: Yeah.... I'm amazed I made it out of that at all...
???: Who's this you brought with you?
The cat looked up at Arabis. 
Zinnia: New friend of mine I made on my way back. Came very handy more than once. This is Arabis. Arabis, Pitcher. She's a master of bartering so if you need to pick up some goods she has you covered.
The spider gave a small nervous wave. The cat's eyes widened. 
Pitcher: You're REAL tall, like an athlete. You wanna come inside? We just finished up with some pastries and mocha.
Arabis: Only if you're certain but that'd be quite lovely...
Pitcher: Really well spoken too!
She leaned toward Zinnia's ear and whispered. 
Pitcher: I can see why you like this one. 
She turned toward the inside of the cabin and yelled.
Pitcher: Zinnia is back and brought a guest! Everyone on your best behavior!
Another cat with a flaming skull-like head rushed toward the entrance of the place. 
???: Oh my god, you're okay! We held out when we heard there were survivors but you're actually here!
Zinnia: You worried about me?
???: We were all worried! Glad to see you're back in one piece though.

[Image: sSu07Pc.png]
Zinnia and the skull-headed cat exchanged a quick hug. 
???: So your new friend, I overheard is uh... Arabis right?
Arabis: That would be correct. 
???: Lavender. I'm... what would you call me?
Zinnia: Clutch. You've pulled us all through some tough jobs by just being there. 
Lavender: I can work with that.
She turns her attention toward Arabis.
Lavender: You look so tense, relax.  
Arabis: Relax?
Lavender: You're pretty obviously nervous. I can understand that though...
Pitcher: Seems like the shy type.
Arabis: I was a hermit before any of this so... admittedly I have to say yes to that.
Lavender: Nobody's gonna bite. I mean I know I probably look a little weird and that's not helping my point, but you're going to be fine. 
Zinnia: Let's move inside, yeah? Are the other two home?
Pitcher: Rosa is. Heath is still on a job right now. 
Zinnia: Sounds about right.
Arabis: There's quite a few of you living here...
Zinnia: I mean yeah. We'll have room for you though if you wanna stick around. We picked up a place that'd accommodate for future members of the team like that.
Arabis: That sounds like so much....
Zinnia: If the others are okay with you, we're good. 
Pitcher: It’s been a bit since we've had someone new in our group anyway.
Zinnia leads the spider down toward the living room. A rabbit-esque person with a roachy vibe sits in front of a coffee table organizing money. 
Arabis: Hello.
[Image: 8YrypIy.png]
The rabbit looks up.
???: Just wrapping up, brought in some big ones today. Rent is gonna be easy this month. Glad to see you back also, gave us all a scare.
Zinnia: This is Tuberosa, they're our local dueling master and quite the storyteller. 
Lavender: Most of them are fake though.
Tuberosa: Why're you roasting me in front of the new guy like this? What'd I do to you?
Lavender: I'm just saying it how it is. Combustible nosebleeds, frequencies that'll cause your brain to implode, the entire Big Summit hunt. 
Tuberosa: Okay, I actually got the scars for that last one and I don't appreciate you implying that shit's fake. 
Lavender: You fought a bear. A big bear that hates you a lot. 
Tuberosa: Big Summit is a bear! People know this! Piece of shit was after my cola. Drinks all your good shit and then counts down your sins in front of you. 
Lavender: No, that's some family circus cryptic garbage you're telling people to scare them. 
Pitcher: Wait, what kind of bear is Big Summit?
Tuberosa: Kind of got a white hue going on? Like-
Pitcher: Okay but what kind of bear?
Lavender: PLEASE don't humor them....
Pitcher: I'm just comparing details.
Lavender: What's that mean?
Pitcher: You know. 
Lavender: Oh my god, did a bear attack you?!
Pitcher: I made it out okay.
Zinnia: Shoot what? Like an actual bear?
Pitcher: Yeah! Like...
Tuberosa: Was it wearing a big red outfit? Had a skull for a shoulder pad?
Lavender: Oh my god shut the fuck up! 
Pitcher: Kinda yeah-
Lavender: When did this happen? 
Tuberosa: Yeah for real though why didn't you say shit?
Pitcher: Nobody got hurt so it's fine right?
Zinnia: Was it during a job?
Pitcher: Yeah, like two days ago?
Zinnia: It's long gone by now... where was it?
Pitcher: Creek by the North Wanderlust-Solitaire Station checkpoint. Why?
Lavender: Gonna put a report in for the guild to pass around just in case. I don't want anyone running into a bear like that. 
Zinnia: See if you can get a bounty up for it. That bear needs to be cleared out.
Pitcher: We can handle that in a bit... I'll be right back actually. You all keep talking. 
Pitcher made her way toward the kitchen. 
Tuberosa cleared their throat.
Tuberosa: So uh... you got any experience with knighthood at all?
Arabis: Unfortunately no. I do not have any form of expertise in the subject.
Zinnia: He's a pretty good fighter though, could always benefit from more muscle.
Tuberosa: Unfortunately, you gotta go through some training and then a test to get that job though. Think we can set him up as a squire for now while we get everything done though.
Arabis: Would that allow me to work with you?
Lavender: Mmhmm! You can't accept jobs yourself but you're welcome to work with any of us. Once you're accepted in properly by a guild though you're welcome to whatever work you'd like. 
Arabis: Will it take long?
Zinnia: Hard to say but I've seen you in action. You can at least pass the physical portion of the exam easily. 
The spider nodded.
Arabis: Then I'm willing to do the work.
Pitcher interrupts the group, balancing a giant tray. 
Pitcher: Got sweet bread and mocha ready to go! Everyone grab one yeah?
The group quickly scrambled in to grab themselves treats. Zinnia hands Arabis a mug and a piece of bread. The spider smiles in appreciation before having a taste himself. 
Zinnia: You did a really good job with these... 
Pitcher: Can't just thank me, Rosa here helped me out a ton. Family recipe?
Tuberosa: Mm. Came from my parents. 
Lavender: You sure got a lot of those under your belt.
Tuberosa: They run a bakery, kind of just happens. You pick up on some of the good stuff.
Arabis: It's quite wonderful... the chocolate flavor is very comforting.
Pitcher: I'm glad you like it, there's a second batch coming in soon!
Zinnia: That sounds great honestly....
Arabis: Mm... to be honest it feels too good. I've never really had much of a chance for something like this...
Lavender: Don't you worry about that, you're welcome to enjoy things with us.
Tuberosa: Yeah, nobody's judging you or anything like that you know. We're all misfits and bastards. 
Pitcher: Misfit maybe, but he seems too nice to be a bastard.
Tuberosa: Give him some time, we'll corrupt him. 
Lavender: No!
Zinnia: Can we get him settled in? We're both a little tired and I'm sure he needs a place to rest.
Arabis: That would be very appreciated.
Lavender points over to the staircase. 
Lavender: We got a room up there that might be nice and accommodating. Hopefully you won't have to duck to go in. 
Zinnia grabbed Arabis' hand. 
Zinnia: We'll try not to be gone too long. 
Lavender leaned up to Zinnia and whispered.
Lavender: He's cute by the way. If you haven't made a move yet you probably should or someone else will. Though I get the sense he's only got eyes for you right now. 
Zinnia sneered. Lavender poked her tongue out. 
Lavender: I mean it. This town is filled with people brave enough to flirt with a 8 foot tall beetle.
Zinnia: He's a spider actually but... I'll take your warning. 
The two of you walked up the staircase toward the guest room. There was a very basic bed and a few boxes of canned goods there. 
Zinnia: You doing okay?
Arabis: A little overwhelmed admittedly but... I think I will be alright. 
Zinnia: They all seem to like you, you'll be fine. 
Arabis: I know... I'm not used to anything like this.
Zinnia: I'm gonna rest a bit too, I'll be back quickly, yeah?
Arabis nodded. He moved toward the bed and flopped over onto it, making a bit of noise. 
The spider sat alone, pondering if this could be a real chance at finding something more than a lonely den in the woods.
Chapter 2 Part 1: Pitcher

[Image: aYz9xwT.png]
Zinnia: You managed to get some rest?
Arabis: Mm, admittedly less than I'd like but it'll suffice for now. Tell me, what's our plan for today?
Zinnia: Well most of us are gonna go out and handle some jobs but I'm taking things to cool down after taking a long trip.
Arabis: Oh? We're not getting straight to business?
Zinnia: We are, but we're handling the more mundane. We're going out with Pitcher to handle some deliveries. 
Arabis: Pitcher is the cat yes?
Zinnia: One of them. Lavender is too but I guess it'd be a little hard to tell from first glance.
Arabis: Mmm. Sorry about that. Where is she?
Zinnia: Probably in her room getting ready. We should have some breakfast before we head out. 
The two settle down into the kitchen and prep something simple. Some eggs, some cured meats, bread with jam, and beans. Arabis couldn't help but smile a little at the plate in front of him, this was a luxury he lacked living in the woods on his own. 
He got to work quickly and sampled a little bit of everything, downing things perhaps a little too quickly.
Zinnia: You can slow down, nobody's going to steal your food you know.
Arabis grabbed a napkin and covered his face, hiding his embarrassment a little. 
Arabis: I'm sorry, I'm... really not used to eating with other people if I'm honest. It's all quite good. Do you eat like this every day?
Zinnia: When we can. Sometimes money gets a little tight though and we have to skip a meal but we try to have stuff.
Arabis: Does everyone cook for themselves?
Zinnia: In the morning yeah. Dinner though is usually Lavender or Tuberosa. They both got some nice recipes up their sleeves. 
Arabis: Mm, I'm excited to try-
Their conversation was cut off by Pitcher scooting herself next to the two of them on the big table. 
[Image: I7cnfZb.png]
Pitcher: Hope you don't mind me keeping company! You're going to both be joining me for work today after all right?
Zinnia: of course. Got a lot of deliveries today yeah?
Pitcher: No, but I do have a high priority one that should help us pay the bills.
Arabis: Could you define high priority?
Pitcher: We're delivering someone's beloved mount today, something that's a little hard to keep a low profile.
Zinnia: How far?
Pitcher: From the trade spot all the way to the town over. It'll be an all day trip but the money involved is pretty good...
Zinnia: Were you planning to do that alone?
Pitcher: No... but everyone else turned out busy with stuff so I'm glad to have you two up to the job. A big animal like that can be really tricky to take care of for the hours we're going to travel. 
Arabis: Are there concerns over possible thieves on the way?
Pitcher: Possibly but not the most likely. Still it's good to be prepped for the worst case scenario on the job. We're going through a relatively mundane route and the weather is looking pretty mild today. Makes for a perfect job to initiate a newcomer. 
Zinnia: Agreed on that, gives you time to get to know the people you'll be working with aye?
Arabis: Mmhmm. I suppose I don't mind that. Are we heading off soon?
Pitcher: As soon as breakfast is over, try to wrap up quickly if you can. I'm not gonna miss out on a big paycheck like this.
The trio finished off their plates in good time and gathered their personal effects. There was very little banter on the way over to the trade spot, Arabis clearly quite nervous the entire way. Zinnia occasionally grabbed his hand to comfort him and Pitcher gave him an assuring smile. 
[Image: 213Mr0U.png]
They entered the barn-like section of the post, a few knights from a different guild there taking care of a large creature that resembled a mix between large mammal livestock and a dinosaur. One of them was bandaged up, things clearly had taken a rougher route.
Pitcher led the approach.
Pitcher: Hey! See you've got your part done.
Courier Knight: Of course, though I have to admit things didn't go as smooth as planned. Joni over there got roughed up pretty hard by an attempt to steal the target.
Pitcher: Oh no, was it organized?
Courier Knight: Maybe? It's hard to say really. It was just one guy and he managed to get away after we fended him off. Was pretty decked out with a fancy mechanical weapon I've never seen before.
Zinnia: Possibly a mercenary?
Courier Knight: Maybe. I'll be honest I'm worried someone hired a merc to sabotage this. Wasn't exactly a run of the mill bandit. I need y'all to be careful out there, if you get robbed none of us get paid. 
Arabis: That seems... really unfair. Especially since one of your own has been injured to get things this far.
Courier Knight: That's how these sort of jobs work out. Hate them honestly but they're usually easy enough work. Usually is the keyword, things fell apart this time.  
Pitcher: We'll manage to get this done, no worries. 
Courier Knight: You better, we gotta eat you know? Plus we already lost a good amount out of pocket on medical fees today so... yeah. No pressure.
Zinnia: We got your backs. 

[Image: ZeExTIr.png]
Pitcher approaches the mount, it vacantly stares back at her. 
Pitcher: Any name given for this big fella?
Courier Knight: Trail Mix, used to be a big thing in the racing scene but is pretty much retired these days. Or so I was told.
Pitcher: Its face is too sweet to belong to an old bouj like that. Safe to pet?
Courier Knight: Yeah, pretty docile. Maybe a little too much, would probably let itself get carried off if someone tries. 
Zinnia: Bet it wouldn't care if you tipped it over. 
Arabis: Why would you? It doesn't look like it could harm you if it tried.
Zinnia: I mean I wouldn't for one, and second that's absolutely not true. You get kicked by its hind legs and your ribs are gone.
Pitcher: I think we're fine.
Pitcher reached out and pet Trail Mix on the nose. It tilted its head in response.
Pitcher: Couldn't imagine a friend like this doing some killing you know?
Arabis: It's hard to picture it but nature is scary. 
Zinnia: You got some experiences?
Arabis: I am nature.
Zinnia: You're not that scary.
Pitcher: Yeah I couldn't see you being malicious either. Maybe killing someone though.
Arabis: Yes well..... I can't give you a yes or a no on that.
Pitcher: Spooky. 
Courier Knight: Hey uh, you gonna head off soon?
Zinnia: Seems like it.
Courier Knight: Don't take any weird shortcuts, stay on the paths that are most crowded if possible. I don't wanna hear that something happened to ya'll
Pitcher: If you hear anything in the news it'll be "Bandit found curb stomped on the floor." We'll be fine!
Zinnia: I don't like to brag but uh... yeah I think we'll be good you know? 
Zinnia looked up at Arabis
Zinnia: Don't you agree?
Arabis: Yes well... we'll still play things safe if we can.
The two knights lightly tugged the reins on the large cattle and directed it outside of the trade post's stable.
They had a long path ahead of them.

Quick Reply
Type your reply to this message here.
Smile Wink Cool Big Grin
Tongue Rolleyes Shy Sad
At Angel Angry Blush
Confused Dodgy Exclamation Heart
Huh Idea Sleepy Undecided
[get more]

Human Verification
Please tick the checkbox that you see below. This process is used to prevent automated spam bots.

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)