Casler Huntington/saved posts
To Whom It May Concern
~Third story, River's Rest Inn~
The sword belt lay atop the covers of the narrow bed, the worn golden sunburst hilt still managing to reflect the rays of sunlight entering through the sole window of the room. He stood, if not completely straight, an ability that age and time had stolen from him, next to the window, gazing out at the visible town. His uniform, for all the appearance of second hand, was well taken care of and those elements of leather present oiled, and those of brass, polished. Cradled in his hand was a simple locket, opened to reveal the miniature portrait of a woman and many children of varying ages.
Hallower's eyes strayed from the sight outside the window to the locket, then back again. His eyes noted the large willow tree that rose above a wall of green hedge, and his mind mentally acknowledged the presence of the townspeople beneath its long, slender, wand-like branches. Beyond it, he noted the Captain's Quarters, the scene of his most recent embarrassment, and beyond it, where the Tempest River had divided itself, seeking both northern and southern routes around the island to reach Maelstrom Bay to the west.
He sighed heavily and caught his ghostlike reflection in the glass of the window, and wondered quietly when Molly's dashing guardsman had devolved into the obscene image of an Imperial soldier, not just past his prime, but relegated to a bureaucratic assignment left over to has beens and never will bes. He had been sent to chase a ghost, but had found a man, whose capture might offer one last chance at redemption. No, Haniks thought, there was no redemption, but a chance simply not to die a failure.
The image of the sylvan child, dead, was still burned into his mind and haunted him with every opportunity that he sought sleep. More often than not, it merged into a vision of Mollie, and he was reminded of the death he had been unable to prevent, or even aware of. He wanted home, but he could not leave without him, without Huntington, and he was prepared to, and had now done, anything to accomplish this feat. He recalled several nights ago, smelling the palm of his hand for sulfur, after the meeting with the river rat. A deal had been created and the moral line he had crossed to achieve it needed to be justified, but for now, he merely stood at the window, gazing out across the town. The machine was in motion and he could not speak one word or another that it would result in an end that he would necessarily be proud or pleased with. All that remained was to wait, protect the innocent, and wait again.
~The Warren, House of the Lefante~
She paced across the floor, enraged by the silence that had been brought down upon her by her father's wishes. She was and always had been a loyal daughter, loving those approved by her father, and scorning those who had not. But she was like a rat in a cage, thrown into the river, and slowly sinking beneath its fast moving current, and she knew it.
Beyond the window to her room lay the crowded expanse of The Warren, a scene that she had known from the first moments of her life, that endeared her to the island of River's Rest, and stood as a visual account of her life. She had never been able to leave the smuggler neighborhood for long, and now she felt chained to it by so many circumstances that had solidified into links in an unbreakable chain. Casler had forged that chain and fate had wrapped it around her neck tightly, choking her at times to a resignation of its presence. He was leading them all to war, Cerianna thought, and everyone is holding hands and smiling along the way.
She turned violently from one window, whipping her long braid around her, and turned her attention to the scene beyond the other. Sunlight twinkled off the waves of Maelstrom Bay, but it was not the bay she eyed, nor the various cutters and other craft cutting across its surface, but the cliffs along it. The old and abandoned sorcerer's tower, its blue roof nearly mirroring the sky, marked the pathway that led deeper into the wilderness where only the foolish or the brave bothered to venture, and thus, made the perfect home for Casler. He could not escape detection in The Warren, too many eyes, too many lips, and above too many, a dark cloud of retribution from the DeRichters for those who allied with a man, whose death had catapulted them to power. No, she thought, he's out there and spreading his alluring poison of a better world to those with open minds and even larger hearts.
Her father was already among those, an adherence which had made him deaf to his daughter's protests, rendering her silent like the wind.
Cerianna turned back to the former window, once again drawing in the sight of her people, her trade, and her life. Out of sight, down the way named after her people and past the square, were the DeRichters. Amongst them was Messers, who wanted her primarily for bait, and undoubtedly for lesser abhorrent reasons and pleasures. Where and when he would set his trap, she did not know, with the great irony that the only way to learn was to seek the help of those beyond the brambles, who knew neither the world of smuggling nor piracy, but knew the town as home just as much. It was a vulnerability she at once hated and adored, to have someone beyond her world to speak of and with. It was not that she did not love the place of her people, but that the brambles had grown menacing of late, no longer a shield against the outside world, but a prison made of thorn and vine.
~The Warren, House DeRicter~
"And how proceeds your plan, Messers?"
The man, by no means handsome, and by many definitions repugnant, parted his lips to form a gap toothed smile and replied, "Well, Valons, well. Them people hate the law, and without that fool Huntington, they will be a losing the only man foolish enough to protect them sorry hides."
The voice that then spoke, as before with the question, was strong and rich, but at both times fearful and comforting, like a bullfrog's song in the darkness of a summer night, "That is fine news, indeed. Already, he," the emphasis on the pronoun heavy, reluctant to offer a name," has proven a thorn in our sides. But like a thorn, he will be plucked and cast aside. The world he left no longer exists, not that it ever did."
Messers nodded, the feather plume on his hat bobbing in response, creating a stark image of a thin, sickly bird eyeing an offered morsel. " Aye, he will come far her, and when he does, they both be a perishin'. The time be drawin' soon ta when ya can match that thar brand ta the wench's other cheek."
Were it but audible, it might have been considered the same as a serpent's hiss mixed with the excruciating protests of nails on chalk board, but instead, the silence was greeted with the satisfied smile of the man known as Valons DeRichter.
~Ruined Tower, Rooftop~
The man known as Casler Huntington stood atop the blue roof of Pandare's tower. The island of River's Rest lay out before him, a map of home and conquest. Shrouded by the thick impenetrable barrier of blackberry brambles, The Warren might have been considered an eyesore, but rather it spoke to the river rat of an empowering freedom. Beyond it, to the west stood the Stone Eye, and to the east, the drawbridge that performed only one half of its duties.
The wind whipped silently about him, blowing past him out to the blue expanse of the bay and the Great Western Sea beyond him. His mind was silent but for the memories of a life far to the north, and a moment between a grizzled swordsman and an adolescent not yet a man. The boy lay on the ground, a wooden sword in hand, and an angry red and purple bruise on his arm matched by another on his brow. The swordsman stood, his own wooden sword set between his legs with its point digging into the hard earth of a courtyard.
"Now Casler, you're strong, but you're not strong enough yet to beat ol' Gengry. What did you do wrong?"
The boy gazed up at his mentor, his eyes a mixture of devotion and anger, "...I loss, obviously." This caused a snort from the swordsman who nodded his head for the young Huntington to continue. The answer was sullen and thick with a reluctance to place blame upon himself, "I don't know what I did wrong, other than bothering to attack."
The swordsman nodded, " You attacked, exactly."
The boy's features swiftly went from a surprised blank to an angry protest,"But you told me, too!"
The swordsman laughed, "Just because you can attack, doesn't mean you should, boy! A smart man chooses his fights. Anyone who invites, is either ready to die or expecting you to do the same."
A large white cloud passed over head and Casler Huntington returned his gaze to the island of River's Rest.
So what does it all mean? It means I'm going out of town for the weekend tomorrow afternoon, and figured I'd leave something for you guys to chew on. :)
Have a great weekend folks!
Our story so far
Curious about what has or hasn't happened involving the events in River's Rest? Never fear, here's a summary!
Note: Everything below has been released into the game, so nothing new, unless you weren't privy. In that case, enjoy!
- The Backstory
Approximately ten years ago, Casler Huntington arrived in River's Rest and entered its smuggling world. His past remains a mystery except that he is from Fairport and there is rumor he is the son of a noble family of the Torre Capitol. Over a series of years, Huntington rose meteorically through the ranks of the Lefante smuggling family to become second in command and in the process, destroying the balance of power between the surviving houses of the Smugglers War of 5018. For a brief shining moment, the House Lefante, lead by Huntington had assumed dominance over the smuggling houses of Pirate history.
In 5105ish, Casler saw an opportunity to gain the power needed to defeat and eradicate the pirate houses and place control of the smuggling society of River's Rest within the total power of the original smuggling families. This opportunity involved hijacking an imperial barge for its treasure to raise an army to achieve Huntington's goal. In order to successfully hijack the barge, Casler took the best and the brightest of the House Lefante, including the son of the Patriarch Lefante (brother of Cerianna). The smugglers of River's Rest successfully captured the ship only to find a vicious tempest thrown upon them. The origin of this tempest is unknown. What is known is that the barge sank, taking the lives of Casler's men, as well as the Imperial property to the bottom of the sea. Casler was presumed dead with them. In the absence of Casler and the best of the Lefante, the DeRichter pirate house stepped into the power vacuum and brutally crushed its opposition to assume control of the River's Rest smuggling world.
- Present Story
In the summer of 5107, rumors began to spread that Casler Huntington was alive. The Imperial Household, unwilling to allow any affront to its establishment exist took the unusual course of sending an Imperial inspector to confirm Casler's death or life. This was not a job given to the best of the Turamzzyrian officer corps, but rather handed off to Haniks Hallower, an inspector for the Imperial Navy. Haniks had once had a bright future in the Imperial Navy, but for unknown reasons had failed to capture the success that had seem destined. Haniks arrived in River's Rest, leaving behind in Tamzyrr a large family, including his youngest, a daughter named Mollie, named for his wife, Molly.
Haniks failed to make a good impression on the local inhabitants of the backwater town, which created tension between him and the locals. He was your typical native of Tamzyrr, and saw little in the town when compared to his home. At the same time, a series of raids by the Krolvin began occurring with a disastrous raid that resulted in the capture for enslavement of many women and children. While Haniks attempted to fight the Krolvin, he admitted there was little the Empire could do to help to fight the Krolvin in any reasonable time. Enter the return of Casler Huntington.
During the midst of a Krolvin attack, Casler arrived in the midst of a storm and immediately went into attack. Afterwards, he won allies amongst the town by planning a daring rescue of the women and children. This rescue mission was a success and endeared many of the town's citizens to Casler's side. In the meanwhile, Cerianna Lefante appeared, angry and bitter towards Casler for attempting to hijack the barge with the resulting deaths. Despite, Casler's actions, there were still residents of the town who elected to side with Haniks for numerous reasons, some personal, some loyal.
It was during such an invasion that Haniks first believed he saw Huntington, and it was then later confirmed by his contacts among the residents. Haniks swore to capture Huntington, and to hopefully, salvage his ruined career. At the same time, unknown to Haniks, his daughter Mollie had broken her leg, and due to the impoverish state of his family received mediocre health care. Infection set in and eventually killed Haniks' youngest daughter. This information failed to reach Haniks because the DeRichter house had been intercepting the mail with disastrous ramifications.
Once Haniks learned that letters from his wife with regard to his favorite daughter's condition were being stolen and read by some, he snapped under the hostile atmosphere of the town towards him and his mission. In a blatant exaggeration of his powers, he began hanging townsfolk, whom he considered culpable en mass, for the theft of his letters. It might be argued that this strong handed move earned what he wanted, as letters began to be returned, with the last one placed in the hands of townspeople by Casler Huntington, himself, in an attempt to stop the hanging. It succeeded with the last letter confirming the death of Hanik's daughter, breaking the man, and forcing him to reevaluate his position with regard to the town. He declared an amnesty and a fresh start.
Soon after, Messers, a lieutenant of Valons DeRichter, head of the DeRichter house, began appearing in the town commons after Casler began a vigilante campaign against DeRichter smuggling operations. At the same time, the mission to capture Casler had gained even greater importance for Haniks Hallower. With the death of his daughter, due in part to his absence, or so he felt, he had to make that absence mean something of importance. He had to capture Casler. It was then suggested to Haniks by a council of his supporters that he make an allegiance with the DeRichters, common enemies of Casler, to capture the smuggler rebel. This union of law and disorder came to pass. A plan was formed to capture Casler, the exact details known to few, but most certainly which involved the only surviving child of Patriarch Lefante, Cerianna.
Messers, mean while, has shown the strength of DeRichter in River's Rest, by having Haniks, himself, deeply embarrassed with arrest and then personally torturing and killing town residents who showed themselves hostile to his and the DeRichters' mission. Meanwhile, Haniks is having doubts that he has made the right ally in his goal to capture Casler, while Casler, himself, continues to harry the DeRichters from the side, waiting for his opportunity to strike. Conflict is drawing near, will Casler be captured? What of Cerianna, and her role in the trap? Will Haniks break off his deal with the devil?
- End Summary.
A'ight folks, there's a summary for ya. Now someone go drop this over at www.Krakiipedia.org, cause I am NOT writing that again. Also, there's even deeper details which I excluded for time's sake which can be added by those in the know. :)
Farewells and Good-byes
[ The Warren, House Lefante]
He sat in the stone window that offered an expansive view of the Warren. The odd collection of ramshackled buildings and homes crowded together and ringed by great brambles appeared as they always had. Men, women, and children, moved by the same daily script and there was no sign that something had changed. Casler quietly turned his head to the center of the room, to a large four posted bed upon which a woman lay. Her dark hair, once raggedly cut, was now trimmed and offered a halo of sorts for a face frozen in sleep. The bruises, the cuts, the atrocities done upon her body were gone now, with the exception of a line drawn across her throat. Faint tendrils of green under the skin emanated from the wound and healing had done nothing to remove them or the cut they originated from. The rags and canvas which had clothed her had been replaced with a simple dark blue dress. There were no jewels or finery, for this was the way it was, the way it had always been.
Casler squeezed the locket in his hand, causing its chain to sway slowly back and forth beneath his fist. His eyes went back to the Warren, where slowly, and unseen, a war was beginning to unfold.
[The Warren, House DeRichter]
Many would say that the pirates had no honor. They had attempted to crush the old ways back at the time of the Cataclysm and nearly had succeeded. The Smugglers' Code meant little to nothing to them at times, but that did not mean there was not a code among them carried with them from the days of piracy to the assumption of smuggling. Some might argue that it was an even older code, born on the waves and carried across the many seas of Elanthia. Now, in the depths of the DeRichter Hold a ceremony was unfolding that rarely was seen in the light of day.
Upon a stretcher lay a man of lank bone and hair, whose sallow skin might be assumed as the cause of death by those who did not know him in life. Two gold coins covered his eyes and a clean white scarf wrapped around his neck hid from sight the fact that a gulf existed between it and the head. Slowly, the stretcher was guided by two men into an alcove and once fully in, there left. A man stepped forward and the other two stepped back in deference. The man placed a glass filled with a golden-brown liquid on the alcove besides the body and then whispered a prayer invoking the Lord of the Seas. Finishing, Valons DeRichter stepped back and away and nodded to the two men who followed him away from the alcove, and the body, alone with the gold and the drink, was left to the darkness and all its inhabitants.
[River's Rest, Tempest River]
The body slowly swirled in a clockwise motion, grazing tall river weeds and the occasional partially submerged log. As the morning sun raised itself higher into the skies, its heat increased, and soon the body would be further desecrated by the elements. By observation it was the body of a man, a large, rotund man dressed in the uniform of the great human empire. Small fish nibbled at his side where existed an ugly gouge in the flesh. The body swirled now to the left and was caught by the current, which dragged it towards the open expanse of Maelstrom bay. Like a piece of driftwood, the body soon became lost in the waves of the bay, drawn by the tide further into Charl's domain and beyond the assistance of his daughter. Had the body a thought, a last sliver of energy to raise to the infinite one last question before ceasing to be the body of a man, and becoming the meat of the dead, it may have thought this, "...bury me in earth, where my children's children can know the man that was me...bury me in earth, and not be forgotten like my destiny."
And so ends the first phase of the Casler Huntington storyline. Thats right, the first phase! There's more, but it is yet to come. In the meanwhile, things will calm down considerably in town, and perhaps that sleepy stupor that hangs so lovingly above it will remain undisturbed for a while. What this also means is that I'm going to take a little time from grand events (there will still be little ones....willow tree anyone?) to focus on finishing up work thats out of sight, like the expansion, and work that needs completing to even attempt to make a future hunting grounds possible.
I hope everyone has enjoyed the ride so far and will also appreciate a nice breather. While events eventually ended as I planned from the start, the path on how we got there was greatly affected by you, the towns inhabitants. Messers was entirely your creation, his existence brought about by the actions of individuals partaking in the quest. He was quite fun to play with, but like all good things...good evil things..or evil good things...it had to end. So for as much as I planned the story, I was virtually as swept up along with the events and changes as you guys were. So thanks for the fun, and I hope to keep things interesting!
Finality of Man
--Somewhere near Maelstrom Bay--
He was not a learned man. He knew his letters and his name, but he owned no books, nor speculated on thoughts and theories that demanded great intellect. He knew his trade and every dawn met the rising sun on the waters of Maelstrom Bay and the sea beyond. He knew his prey and when he cast his nets into the water always drew back fish, but no more and no less than he needed. Thus, it was that surprise found itself into his routine and rather heavily, at that.
The net always pulled heavy with the bounty of the sea, the literal meat of his table, and it was a weight that was familiar to his calloused and scarred hands. Not that day, as autumn rolled along on the path to winter, the weight was different. It was more.
It was the weight of a man where fish should have been. The effects of the sea are not kind to man, an alien in its house, and the fisherman could discern little from the man's face. What flesh remained, clinging stubbornly to the bone, was evidence of a wide girth. It was this that offered the first clue to him, as he looked over the body that sagged in his net, and even still dripped pieces of the mortal clay back into the sea through the netting.
No, for as uneducated as he was, he knew the symbol that graced the belt that clung to the pants that were wrapped desperately around the bone and filled with the remnants of what once was man. It was the symbol of the empire that he knew of, was a part of, but knew nothing of being of. The lord of the sea had elected to retain the body and so sunk it not far from where it had been set to water.
His first instinct was to release to Charl what Charl had kept, but he was man and not Arkati. A reluctance filled him to offer any man back to the anonymity of the depths and so he began to row, towing the body behind his small boat. And so he landed, his feet finding the sand of the beach, familiar and foreign beneath his soles as one who grows used to waves.
The body he dragged further, his eyes gazing at the wrecked carrack further down the shore, and crossed over a berm of black sand. It was work, but different from the strain that pulled on his back, shoulders and arms out on the water, and soon the grave was dug and the body rolled in. It disappeared with a promising finality under the black sand, free of wave and creature.
He paused then, his back to the grave, the sea sparkling before his eyes and could step no farther. There remained one final thing and this he did, carefully stacking one piece of coral after another into a small pile centered around a large piece of driftwood. Upon this wood, he applied his knife, and on the wood, he applied the letters he knew.
The tide had turned and his boat with its owner had departed from the beach. There, in the shadow of the berm, the marker stood and the man who was forgotten, was known again, and for now, at least, would remain a man of a name.
Casler Hunting Alive!
Casler Huntington Alive!
The name Casler Huntington is familiar to many of our readers, as the scandal of a decade ago is still often spoken of amongst the noble families of Fairport. It had been presumed that the scion of the honorable Huntingtons had been killed off the coasts of Tamzyrr in 5105, when a sudden tempest had sent Huntington and his crew to the depths of the Great Western Sea. However, reports out of River's Rest, learned down in the dock district by captains who swear to legal practices, is that not only is Huntington alive, but he has been the center of much controversy in the small river town!
In the summer of this year, the Imperial Navy sent to River's Rest an inspector to confirm rumors that Huntington had resurfaced. After nearly a month of work, the inspector successfully discovered the truth to Huntington's existence during the midst of a Krolvin raid on the small town. There followed several months of failed attempts to capture the noble turned criminal and to subject him to the silk rope in Tamzyrr for crimes against the empire on the high seas and rivers. Reportedly, Huntington received much aid from the locals, which is not surprising due to the large criminal element known to make the town its home.
What followed next has been unclear at best, but after a series of events, the imperial inspector was murdered by Huntington, who remains at large. Other reports have noted a drop in illegal shipments coming and going through the small town, and there have been several murders of 'river rats', a name adopted by locals of River's Rest, in bars and taverns along our fair city's dock district. No suspects have been found and whispers claim a territorial war has broken out amongst criminal factions on the island. Sources at the palace on Regents Hill claim Count Claybourne has received messengers from the Imperial City that concern the matter of the murder of an imperial official.
Many believe that there is more news to come of events in River's Rest, and by no means, has the affair of Casler Huntington ended. Due to his former status here in the fair city, the Royal Torren Press will continue to follow all events and transgressions. Undoubtedly, Huntington's actions will draw attention to the town elsewhere, as others go forth to seek out the truth behind these events and see for themselves, if Casler Huntington, the noble turned criminal, remains alive.
The Huntingtons, particularly, Lord Camler, Master of the Wharf, refused to offer comment on his son's apparent return. Readers will remember that Lord Camler disowned his son shortly after the scandal in 5097. Lord Camler's second son, Camler Athworth, is the present heir of the honorable Huntington family.
Torren Guard Routs Krolvin Slavers!
The Royal Torren Press
Fairport, County of Torre
Ivastaen 4th, 5108
Torren Guard Routs Krolvin Slavers!
The blood of the Grimswarm had but barely dried when our Count Clayborne issued orders for one of the most celebrated companies of the Torren Guard. They were sent, under the command of Captain Neyla Cavale, to the small river town of River's Rest to apprehend noble-turned-criminal Casler Huntington. By the fortune of Niima, the the Guard arrived during the midst of a Krolvin invasion. They saved River's Rest and its occupants from certain doom. According to sources at the Royal Garrison, it has been years since the Guard clashed against the scourges of the Great Western Sea. Predictably, the blue-skinned monsters proved no match for the elite of Torre and the Turamzzyrian Empire.
The safety of the town secured, sources tell the Royal Torren Press that the Guard will now turn toward their mission of capturing the elusive criminal Casler Huntington. Since the nefarious murder of an Imperial inspector in the Rest last year, there has been an official protest by the Imperial representative in the court of Count Claybourne. The complaint demands that justice be meted out upon the criminal, accompanied by warnings that Tamzyrr will not sit idly by if nothing is done.
The honorable House of Huntington has so far remained quiet on the matter of the wayward son and former heir, who fled Fairport more than ten years ago. However, a servant--who will remain unnamed--has spoken in private about the family's reaction to the news that Casler Huntington was possibly alive and living miles to the south. The source tells that the subject of Casler remains forbidden within the walls of the Huntington's Watch Hill manor.
Casler Huntington remains an enigma. Rumors reported by locals of River's Rest state that he may have fallen or been taken captive during the latest outbreak of Krolvin violence. Should this rumor prove fact, it will likely make the mission of the Torren Guard that much harder to complete. As we all know, it will nevertheless be accomplished by our fair and brave soldiers in blue and buff: the Sword and Shield of Torre.
This information may be of interest to players frequenting the town of River's Rest. Casler Huntington is a local celebrity who has engaged in a number of daring exploits of late, and it seems his journeys are just beginning!
The People of the Rest Grow Suspicious
The death of Casler Huntington, beloved leader of the smuggler community, has left the people of River's Rest guarded and suspicious. The Warren has become a little more inhospitable, and now, worried about the ease with which outsiders can reach the island have paid Knaydl to dock her vessel on the opposite side of the river. Thus allowing the rehired Reiver guard, Cotuil, to screen visitors at the drawbridge entrance into the town.
The cutter will now be dropping off and taking passengers on the other side of the river. It will still be accessible by going under the drawbridge via a well marked path. New visitors to the town will be reminded to be sure to have a measly 5 silvers in their pockets to gain entry into the town or know of alternative methods of entry.
Of note to citizens, the guard will be updated to allow free passage into the town.