Silence: Mob Psychology
The good people of Arx need to find someone in all this chaos who will care about them, who will talk to them, who will solve their problems... The consequences of not doing so, could be costly.
This is for the Non-Combat Social types who want a chance to flaunt their skills. There will be various "little groups" in the mob to accommodate many people trying to influence them at once. If you are a non-combat character and haven't participated in any of the PrP scenes relating to the Silence, send me an @mail so I can ensure your involvement!
April 2, 2017, 3 p.m.
Arx - Upper Boroughs - Traders Home
Comments and Log
1 Iron Guard, Meeka arrive, following Merek.
A large crowd has formed in the heart of commerce, in some spots people are milling so close as to be shoulder to shoulder. It's thick. Tightly packed. Hundreds of people here. There's clearly divisions between the mob though. There's a cluster of women and children, crying for food. There's a group of armed men looking dourly at the others. There's those crying to be let up into the greater city. There are those who mumble about over crowding and the social consequences that come with that. Lastly, there is the crippling fear of Bringers on everyone's mouth.
550 The merchant class has been the heart of Arx since it was formed. While nobles make the decisions and the lower class does the work, it was the Merchant class that pieced everything together, made it all one uniform cycle. Many of them lived here, having worked their way up or having been here since birth. It is likely why there's a group that's suddenly building a commotion with another, a group that clearly has drug themselves up from the Lowers. It appeared a Lower Boroughs family, headed by a stringy haired man with a wife and a few children, were arguing over setting up their 'camp' in front of a merchant's home. Space is at a prime. Those of the lowers who did not evacuate when they were told too, are finding it difficult to get beyond the gates now, and thus spread out amongst the Upper Boroughs, with the ever growing sound of battle heard near the sea watch gate.
550The merchant class has been the heart of Arx since it was formed. While nobles make the decisions and the lower class does the work, it was the Merchant class that pieced everything together, made it all one uniform cycle. Many of them lived here, having worked their way up or having been here since birth. It is likely why there's a group that's suddenly building a commotion with another, a group that clearly has drug themselves up from the Lowers. It appeared a Lower Boroughs family, headed by a stringy haired man with a wife and a few children, were arguing over setting up their 'camp' in front of a merchant's home. Space is at a prime. Those of the lowers who did not evacuate when they were told too, are finding it difficult to get beyond the gates now, and thus spread out amongst the Upper Boroughs, with the ever growing sound of battle heard near the sea watch gate.
With the tea-cup in his hand, he watches the Godsworn and the people as they interact, a disciple himself. When Umay approaches him, he smiles and greets her, "Good afternoon, I am doing quite well and yourself?" As he speaks the two guards stand up and move to the side to share a smoke. Lyiana's arrival and Lazarus' greeting to the two lady is interrupted when the mob arrives. The merchant sets down the cup of tea on the table and directs his focus that way.
There's another group that's starting to tussel with one another, verbally. Shouts of theft are lifted in accusation between another pocket south of the first. There's some jostling as people push back and forth. It appears this group is made out of the mix of residents as well. Some are looking rather distressed with their dirty clothes and matted hair, others are standing higher ground in clothes that are well tailored.
Merek has taken his time to arrive at the scene, while he has a staff with him that helps him walk, although he does seem to be in much better shape. Mobs, that is often fun. Never shame them. Riots ensue. He has come to see what all the fuss is about, since he still can't fight at his best. When he sees a group starting to tussel, and some folk that have just arrived to help the situation it seems, he moves over to where he hears shouts of 'theft'. "What is all this then about theft?"
As things start to heat up and the press of people becomes more unbearable as the time goes on, there's yet a third pocket that squabble over a dumped sack of potatoes! Oh those poor potatoes! The fact that food spills freely on he ground prompts a lot of those around the area to go leaping and diving, scrambling forward with greedy hands to try and snag any free rolling potato. The man who dropped them is hollaring and trying to people people back with a stick over his 'goods' ... There's a scare that prices have gone on the rise, rumors that food is being hoarded by upper classes, rumors that there won't be enough for all... Rumors are enough to strike fear into people and thus, the outcome of a thrumming pocket of people trying to overwhelm the potato merchant.
She shifts on her feet, looking at the mob as it seems to get closer to her standing place. Lyiana's eyes get huge in her face and she shys away like a skittish kitten, raising her hands in almost a defensive posture. "What are you speaking of?" she asks, trying to be heard over the din. "Who stole what?" Her emerald green eyes pick out the children and she tries to move to them along with their Mothers. "Please don't hurt the children... If... If you want food, I can provide it... At least... As much as I am able..." The little tailor is clearly trying to help and it shows, but she is also nervous as a cat. Lyiana watches the poor potato merchant get overwhelmed and tries to help there, switching her focus.
Umay looks up at Lyiana and smiles at her in greeting, "Good afternoon, Lyiana." She greets to the tailor, "How are you?" She looks over at the crowds as the noise starts to build from the and frowns in gentle concern from the escalations. "Seems that there may be some fighting..." She looks down briefly at her tabard as if to help her gather strength. "I am doing well, sir, but please. Excuse me." She breaks away and hesitantly lingers as she tries to decide which group to approach. Since no one seems to be tending to them, she approaches the family arguing over where to set up their camp. She smiles and offers, "Is there anything that I may do to help clear up some of the confusion?"
Lazarus frowns and stands up to watch the commotion. The Union guys do not interfere as long as the mob stays away from the manor but they do stand at the gate alarmed. "Fighting? I hope not." He says to those around him, "Oh come on, fighting for food? Excuse me." Lazarus exclaims and moves toward the people fighting for food. "Let us stop this none-sense. No one goes hungry in our city. You all know this." His voice a bit authorian over this group of people fighting.
Merek checked command + leadership against difficulty 25, resulting in 20, 5 lower than the difficulty.
The Group fighting over some preceived crime, turns with gestures and shouts to Merek as he approaches. The Upper Boroughs people are claiming, "They're robbing us! Stealing from our homes! Breaking in, taking what they think they can get away with! Where are the Iron Guard?! What are you going to do about them?! They're riff raff, let them go back to the Lowers!"
Meanwhile the other side of the group, the Lowers people involved are crying foul, "They're charging us double what they did before! They're not making it easy and we can't go back to the Lowers. There are SHAVs and Bringers! They want us to die! They don't care about us. We did nothing wrong! They're claiming we stole our blankets, our soup bowls, and everything else we have ---!" There's gestures back to a small encampment set up, where various goods look as if some could be stolen for the value of them.
Lazarus checked charm + propaganda against difficulty 30, resulting in 71, 41 higher than the difficulty.
Umay checked charm + empathy against difficulty 25, resulting in 31, 6 higher than the difficulty.
She tries to walk over to the potato merchant, but the throng may be too big for her to pass. "Please," she says quietly, then louder, "We can settle this like adults! please allow me to help you! I can help you pass out food and try to get you some temperary shelter. Please! Stop harrassing that poor merchant!" She is positively shouting now, using her little body like a battering ram as she tries to get to the poor man. "I can help!" Lyiana says.
Merek does not know what to do without information, so for now he calls out, "Can someone tell me what all is happening here!?" He then listens while he leans atop his staff. Well, this is not going to be a simple task. He listens to what all of them say, then he looks to the Upper Boroughs folk, "Listen... I need proof before you condemn a single man," he states, then he looks over to the people from the Lowers, "You will /not/ have to go back to the wartorn Lowers, but we will need to decide on where to have people go," he states.
The Guardsman takes a moment to debate it over, "I am with the Iron Guard," he then motions to another Guard which comes with him, and he takes a moment to watch, while Meeka slides into the crowd, becoming one of them, listening with streetwise knowledge to try and gauge the crowd's reactions. The man then calls out, "Now, I ask to hear both sides of this situation, if you will. Not a single man will be left to the Shavs or Bringers, nor will a single man have to worry about their own goods, I can assure you that both sides will come out well from this, if you just let me hear you both."
Those that are fighting over space turn to sister Umay! There are looks of fury turned to her. The Upper Boroughs people voice out: "There is so much over crowding! Do you know where they're putting their waste?! On our streets! Send these people back to the Lowers. There is no room for them here! We have our own problems to deal with! There's simply no room, we're tripping over them!"
Meanwhile the Lowers people whine, "We just wanted to be somewhere safe! There are talks of exploding buildings and Bringers coming out of the water, coming out of the shadows! We can't go back there!"
The Uppers: "They'll never go back if you don't tell them too now! They're like rats!"
Lyiana checked charm against difficulty 30, resulting in 19, 11 lower than the difficulty.
Lyiana checked charm + diplomacy against difficulty 30, resulting in 13, 17 lower than the difficulty.
Umay checked composure + empathy against difficulty 15, resulting in 32, 17 higher than the difficulty.
Merek checked charm + diplomacy against difficulty 25, resulting in 36, 11 higher than the difficulty.
Lazarus checked charm + propaganda against difficulty 30, resulting in 46, 16 higher than the difficulty.
When Lyiana and Lazarus approach the crowd trying to pocket potatoes and the poor merchant left to defend his wares, the merchant looks relieved to see them both. His eyes swing toward Lazarus, "Praise to the gods! I have food to sell and without my goods being sold, I will go hungry! Tell them that Master Mercier!" He recognizes the man.
Meanwhile the other side of the arguement start to break away from the spilled potatoes. No one is returning them though. What has been pocketed has been pocketed. There is someone who cries out to Lyiana in a panic, "They are raising the prices! Doubling it! There are talks of shortages! What if the Bringers attack the docks again! We'll starve first! Where is the food?! We're hungry!!!"
"You know what separates us from the Shavs and Bringers that have come with Brand? We are civilized people who are on the side of what is right. All men, in this /together/," Merek tells the Lower and Upper folk, while he points towards the direction of Seawatch with his staff, "We must come together if we wish to win. Now, knowing that, can you at least consider each other's arguments for a moment?" he asks, though his voice is pleading, with no accusation in it. It seems he will not shame them, just remind them they are all men on the same side as he goes along.
Lyiana checked charm + etiquette against difficulty 30, resulting in 9, 21 lower than the difficulty.
Umay checked charm + theology against difficulty 15, resulting in 27, 12 higher than the difficulty.
The little tailor nods to the merchant and then turns to the person whom is screaming at her in panic, her emerald green eyes bouncing from person to person. Lyiana looks frazzled for a moment, before her eyes drift down to the ground. "I don't know how to help you with that. All I can say to you is have faith. I know they are upping the prices. Believe me, it is effecting me as well. I know what you are going through. The only thing I can offer you is food and and someone to talk to! I can't be the one who lowers the prices on that. I am a tailor and I have lowered my prices considerably on clothing since the siege!" She is not shouting, more trying to be heard over the din.
Umay looks over the faces and remains unwaivering despite the agitated looks sent her way. She smiles gently afterwards, some clear sympathy carried in her eyes for the people of the Lowers. She tries to wait in a break in the conversation before she tells them all, "I know that space is tight right now, but given the circumstance we should all be able to share with one another in these difficult times." She chews on her bottom lips as she listens to the problems one by one. "These people are not rats, they are children of the Pantheon, the same as you and I." She tells the people of the Upper Boroughs, frowning with a frown as she comes to their defense. "We are all deserving of the world the Dreamer has made for us, and does not Petrichor ask us that there is some ground that should be kept sacred without fear of fighting and violence? Is it not Gild that asks of us to welcome our guests into our homes and hearts with open arms? If you do not want their waste to go into your streets, then teach them how you get rid of it here. Invite them in so there is no mess outside waiting for you. They are not unwilling to learn, they simply do not know better right now and are used to living a certain way where they grew up. At the same time, they should be treated with more respect."
Lazarus raises his hands, "Listen! Listen, we must come together as one and extend our rite of Hospitality towards our neighbors. If food is scarce seek your house and if your house is unable then come to house Mercier. You know this. Do not let the demons seperate us! Do not let them divide us! Do not steal from your neighbor. Help them! Help each other. That is how you will defeat the shavs and the bringers." He says to the crowd infront of him.
Those standing around Merek all start to grumble together. There's the hecklers who continue to claim that all Lowers people are criminals. There's certainly an undertone of discrimination running like a current through the mob. It's a powder keg waiting to explode. The Upper Boroughs men yell out at Merek, angrily, "JUST check their stuff! They've got things there they couldn't have possibly paid for! There's a vase that's gone missing from my home! It's been in the family for generations! Check already rather than standing there!" A vase? Really. Well, people fight over the smallest things. Another pipes in, "I had a painting go missing a fortnight ago, after these rats started coming up from the gutter!" Another one snarls, "I'm missing all the silver cutlery from my room! We charge you to find them. Look in their stuff first!" The Uppers folks were pressing for the search and seizure of valuables owned by those who are refugees from their own home.
"You can't do that! That's our stuff! You can't go through it without our permission! We aren't thieves! We won't let you PAW through our things!" There is friction still, but at least no one is doing much more than flinging words at eachother.
Diddanwch the Pine Marten, A fiery headed prodigal named Gwddfgwyn arrive, following Asger.
Diddanwch the Pine Marten, A fiery headed prodigal named Gwddfgwyn leave, following Asger.
Gaius, a Thraxian Confessor, Balanar, a shadowy Confessor arrive, following Alistair.
Gaius, a Thraxian Confessor, Balanar, a shadowy Confessor leave, following Alistair.
Merek checked charm + etiquette against difficulty 25, resulting in 27, 2 higher than the difficulty.
The Lowers people cries at Lyiana, "WE CAN'T EAT FAITH! There's no FOOD! She wants us to eat air and hope our children won't starve!" And there is another wave of panic that sets in, more people start diving for those potatoes the merchant was trying to collect. THe crush of people starts to wave in toward the Merchant, he's having a hell of a time trying to protect his potatoe stash, sending a good solid whack of his stick against the back of someone's hand that reaches for one too close to him.
There is confusion over what to do when Lazarus speaks again to the group. Some hands are still trying to get at the potato sacks that the Merchant has on his cart. Others look sheepish. The merchant just looks frazzled. "Call the Iron Guard! I need an escort or else I'm going to have nothing left to bring to market! And then we'll see /prices/ go up!" There is a few who nod at checking with their houses, but the Lowers people bellow, "We are poor sir! We have no House! We aren't Silks! Who are we to go to?! WHO?! Will Mercier feed us all?!" Several faces bob together, waiting to hear what they say.
Lyiana checked composure + empathy against difficulty 30, resulting in 9, 21 lower than the difficulty.
Merek takes a moment to inhale a small breath, then exhales it. "To check each and every man would take time we do not have. How do you know the Bringers who snuck into the city aren't sewing discord? They are intelligent, and they are trying to divide you all." He motions to the Lower Boroughs folk, "I doubt they have stolen a thing, I've met many a person from the Lowers who has been honorable, a few have saved my life, more than once." He then looks to the other side, "But I understand the fear of theft, and the need for law and order. We are in a siege right now however, so I propose this. What good are some material things, when enemies come for our very lives? I own a shop, and from here on out, I'll put part of the proceeds from mercantile profit towards both sides, neither side shall go hungry, while in the meantime, your things will be searched for, when the enemy is not at our gates. We won't forget you, we will record each name down if we must, but we can't stand divided right now." He looks aside to his Iron Guard assistant when he hears Lazarus' side and the need of an Iron Guard, and speaks, "Go help that man if he needs it," then he gives Meeka a look as well, and she moves off towards Lyiana, to help her out, even if that means pulling her out in case a riot /does/ happen. Otherwise, they are just standing presences, not actively talking.
Lyiana starts to nearly lose it, nearly. Her eyes stare around at the crowd as it gets closer and closer and she stepps back as she says, "I don't mean for you to starve. I already said I could help you. If you would just listen and accept it. I'm not a silk either." Her hands raise and she looks as if she could bolt, but she stands her ground because she has no where to run. No one ever said bravery was easy and it looks like the little tailor is trying her damndest not to run screaming at this very moment. Her composure is cracking by a few threads at the moment. She was never one to be composed in huge crowds.
Those fighting over the over crowded streets seethe and hum around Umay. There's more of them now. It seems. Faces are turned toward the sister. The people around her are starting to murmur together, nodding in agreement in what she says. There's still an undercurrent of tension, but she seems to have won this pocket crowd's attention at the very least. There is a disgruntled murmur of agreement of course, for the Upper Boroughs folk seem to want nothing to do with the rats of the Lowers. "We worked hard for what we have!" There protests sounded as if they were dying, some already moving to act as suggested, going to help properly assist the Lowers folk with where they should set up camp and how to get rid of nasty things that pile up... Still, there's one or two in this crowd that prickle at the ask. One or two that are trouble makers. "Why don't we just let the Shavs in and kill them all? That would get rid of the mess!" That has people crying out; worried, fearful, and ngry!
Umay checked charm + empathy against difficulty 15, resulting in 51, 36 higher than the difficulty.
Lazarus shakes his head, "If you need an escort seek out the crafters guild but brothers and sisters, what is this?" The merchant says motioning to the theft. His hand grasps the shoulder of the merchant, "If you are hungry - there is food for you. Seek out the many houses or the Mercier shelter and the Faith. There should be no need for one of our merchants to need an escort to walk down the street. This is home, this is our home and we are letting fear take the best of us." Lazarus motions for one of his guards forwards, "Let Silas know that I need help at the shelter." Telling him in a soft tone before turning to look back to the crowd, his hand still around the other merchant in a brotherly embrace as he speaks to the others, "You steal, you will have to respond to the Iron Guard. There is no need. Seek the Mercier, seek the Crafter's Guild, and seek the Faith. Seek each other, brothers and sisters! Trust in your commoner house of Mercier, work with me and I will make sure every house has a case of good Arx wine." He exclaims and then leans back to whisper to the merchant, "How much for the potatos?"
Lazarus checked charm + propaganda against difficulty 30, resulting in 47, 17 higher than the difficulty.
"I know that you all have, I really do." Umay tells the few protesters, looking over the crowd with a tired looking smile. "And you are not losing what you have worked for! You are simply sharing in the things that we all deserve. A place to rest our heads and people to turn to at our lowest points. Once they have been helped, then things will be better for all and Gild will smile on the generosity shown here today." Her smile wells more when she sees that people are already starting to help the poorer families, but the suggestions from the troublemakers do not go unheard. "Can you hear yourself?" She asks of them, her eyes finding the few people speaking of the suggestions specifically. "You are speaking of hurting, no, killing your fellow men and women. Many of them with families and children that love and rely on them. Imagine that you fill their shoes and that you are stood there to bear those sorts of suggestions, that you are thrown out in front of the Shavs and Bringers to die? Sentinal would truly be disappointed, and he wouuld find justice is any souls were lost to such foolishness. Now I hope to never hear that sort of talk again from any of you. No matter what life we are born into, it is up to us how we behave. The mightiest noble will never stand up to the poorest commoner if their heart has grown dark and cold."
Merek's use of the Bringers has people looking around and eyeing one another suspiciously. One of the Upper Boroughs who had squalled about his stuff missing points at one of the Lower Boroughs, "That one! That one there is a Shav! Must be! Look at the stuff he has piled!" While the words had worked to stem the anger, it had now shifted to fear and for the proclamation of one of the Lowers people being a Bringer people scream and a surge of fear balks them, pressing outward from the group with the material goods spread around their makeshift encampment. The Lowers folks hollar, "We're not! Why would we be here if we were Shavs?! Take our stuff if you greedy bastards want it! We'll have it all back, by HIS promise!!" The Upper Boroughs people hiss at Merek, "They'll claim they have more than what they do! It'll be their word against ours!" The matter about the profit sharing has a few considering (that's good for a crisis action follow up!). The crowd still doesn't thin where Merek is. Though they're in a state of frustrated distress, as people who are in a refugee position get.
"You told us to hold to our Faith woman! We can't eat faith!" Mobs cling to the most ridiculous things said! That one is repeated a few times over. It seems that alone wasn't the point of breaking. It's when Lazarus defends a merchant to the hungry eyes of many that have people grumbling even more, especially when Lazarus claims that people can go to Mercier for food (also a good crisis action to submit!) "They're protecting the Food!" One person says. Then over that person another says, "Gods bless Mercier!" The crowd may be torn, but they've been left far too long torn between the words of Lyiana and Lazarus and it seems anger and fear and paranoia, cling to the things that feed those emotions. "They're callin the Iron Guard on us!!" Words can be misheard! There's many that are looking to Lazarus, but there are some who have listened to the tailor who offers no true solution and rile up around her! "WE ARE GOING TO STARVE!" The sound of panic. The sound of attack. The people start to swarm over the Merchant before he has time to answer Lazarus, the sacks of potatos heaved up in the air and tossed toward the arm waving arm reaching crowd.
Lazarus glances to Umay, nodding to her words. He then turns to lady next to him, Lyiana and nods also in agreement before returning his gaze to the merchant and the people, "Rarely do we have such a nice winter day. Let us share in that. If you are hungry or thirsty, your neighbors will provide!" His voice raises, agitated towards the naysayers, "Turn a deft ear to the naysayers, the Iron Guard is here to help us all, there will be no starving and those that come here to plant the seed of misery are acting in the behalf of demons! Shame on you!" He says as he tries to convince the crowd to push away those negative things away from their assembly.
The group around Umay listen. They calm. They don't seethe. There looks to be shame on many faces when she chides them. Some will actually offer their rooms to the families that are left out on the streets. They'll do their part. However, at the commotion erupting across the way, people from Umay's little knot start to flee. The Upper Boroughs folk are actually helping the Lowers families in this! Her words worked, some how some way!
Lyiana checked composure + etiquette against difficulty 30, resulting in 23, 7 lower than the difficulty.
Merek checked charm + propaganda against difficulty 20, resulting in 33, 13 higher than the difficulty.
Lazarus checked charm + propaganda against difficulty 30, resulting in 60, 30 higher than the difficulty.
Lyiana checked dexterity + dodge against difficulty 20, resulting in 15, 5 lower than the difficulty.
Lazarus checked dexterity + dodge against difficulty 20, resulting in 8, 12 lower than the difficulty.
Umay checked dexterity + athletics against difficulty 20, resulting in 13, 7 lower than the difficulty.
Potatoes... FLYING potatoes. This is how riots start really. Down with the establishment! Or something like that. Potatoes are now flung at Lyiana. Then some at the merchant and Lazarus. The potatoes are a fair size! The crowds seethe in around Lyiana and Lazarus, some are even dropping the Merchant to the ground and kicking at him.
Umay can't get through. The people are already shoulder to shoulder around where the food riot is taking place!
Lazarus has done some good however! There are a group that don't participate in storming the potato merchant and his cart. In fact, a good fist of people break away, running the opposite way, fearful of the Iron Guard as much as the Bringers!
Merek takes the opportunity that the word Bringer had brought, and he turns it around upon them. "None of these folk look much like Shavs at all, and even if they did, there's something Brand's folk have, that none of these men show on their face," he states, while he inclines a small bit. He then taps his staff to the ground, just not heeding the riot too much at the moment, since he is the only man on riot control for the Theft case. "The real enemy is still out there, we'd know if they were around, you all are safe." This is where he has to wrap it all around, to close them all down, "The war needs people, to come together. I know you all are upset, I know each side is going to not trust the other... But for once, you must." He looks over to the riot, and then sighs a bit, "See what happens, when you do not come together? Fear and terror will consume you... But stand together under one banner, stand with those fighting the true fight, stand with those that stand for Arx, together, and we will win." Beat, he seems to think for a moment, and nods a small bit, "Like I said, I'll do what I can to make sure that everyone comes out with what they had before they came here or better. I'm Merek Black, Disciple of Vellichor, some of you might know me, and some of my past work, for the good of the Lowers, and to aid those in the Upper Boroughs. To see us through this... So I'm asking you to trust me, and trust your fellow men." Meeka and the Guard meanwhile do their best to shield or protect those they can, and scatter, over at riot central.
Umay smiles softly and tells them, "I am so happy here today, I know that the Gods will smile on you all and show forgiveness for the few who spoke out of anger." She turns her attention to the others and blinks as she quickly tries to hurry over to Lyiana and the others. She tries to head over to the crowd, but can't manage to get through. She is a small Godsworn afterall, with none of the bearing that might encourage people to allow her some space. "Please, it's going to be okay! I just, need to get through..." Umay tries to protest, standing on the tips of her toes to try to look on over the crowd. "Is everyone okay?"
As the crowd begins to swarm around her, she stands her ground. Even if she is shaking to death and like a leaf in the wind, she stands her ground. "I did no..." Lyiana's breath comes out in a whoosh and she stands like a woman who has no more words. Her eyes peer at everyone who is riling around her and she looks as if she is going to bolt, but somehow she doesn't. Somehow, she stands her ground and watches the crowd. She can't speak, she is a statue in the crowd. She reaches out suddenly, trying to grab a woman's arm. "Please." she says softly "Please don't let your children see this. Please don't let your children see this. Take them somewhere safe. The crafters guild can help you. I'm in the crafter's guild. Please..." Her eyes are wide but yet she still stands there, a tiny woman in the midst of everything whose only crime was wanting to help. When the potatoes fly, she can't dodge and one hits her in the face, brusing it with its force. Her arm is hit next as another potato flies and she stumbles back..
Lazarus motions to his guards to hold, shouting at them, "Get me my horse!" He says before shooting a stare to the iron guard that was sent his way. Motioning to him to stay away for a moment. The merchant, Lazarus attempts to reach for Lyiana, "My guards are not far, let's get you there." His gaze raising to look around from his ducking position as he waits for his horse, thinking that it will help him deal with the mob better, as he deals with working men and women.
Lazarus winces as a potato hits him smack in the face.
Umay checked dexterity + dodge against difficulty 20, resulting in 9, 11 lower than the difficulty.
Ugarte arrives, following Aureth.
Alejandra, a snowy white hound, Aureth arrive, following Ainsley.
Ugarte leaves, following Aureth.
Alejandra, a snowy white hound, Aureth leave, following Ainsley.
Umay gets elbowed by someone as she closes distance. The look on the man's face was strangely devoid of emotion as he looks back at her, having had enough force in that jab to send her back if not on her butt, away from the ring of people rioting. But then he presses into the crowd, disppearing in the throng of faces overrunning the potoato merchant's cart. Words don't seem to work on the crowd freely stealing potatoes! There's hands that go to grab for Lyiana too, one person grumbling, "She has a store! She has money! Get her she has food!" And then more grabbing for Lazarus, "Try to take the Mercier! He promised food! He'll show us where all the food is!"
Merek's crowd looks fearful of the riot coming to bother them, while some on the fringes of his group look otherwise, as if eager and tempted to join the rioting throng of people! There's mixed feelings, but the speech was well worded and it gets the majority of his pocket of people to reconsider the importance of material wealth when there was fights over Food. Because lets face it, people are starting to look over that way, some undoubtfully wondering if Food wasn't the real concern. There are reiterations of Merek's words, "We must stand together. There's enough for us all. Merek Black will promise our valuables!" His name is whispered amongst the crowd, "Merek Black?! Should we worry about food?!" See how fear creeps up on people...
Merek checked charm + leadership against difficulty 15, resulting in 29, 14 higher than the difficulty.
Umay checked composure against difficulty 15, resulting in 25, 10 higher than the difficulty.
Lyiana checked dexterity + dodge against difficulty 15, resulting in 11, 4 lower than the difficulty.
The union guards were more than just burly factory men and women, they were guards of the commoner house of Mercier. They were disciplined but not enough to follow Lazarus' order, instead they move into the crowd with their weapon's drawn to attempt to pull Lazarus and Lyiana back to the Mercier Manor gate.
Merek looks to all the people he has been dealing with, and now it is time to reign it in. He does not command, instead his tone is light, though... His gaze does look over to the riot... Did he... He shakes his head, then he speaks with a calm, but assured voice, "You will not have to worry about food," he states, as his words seem to echo out and upwards loud, perhaps a few rioters might hear it, just enough to help draw some away so the others can work. "I will be providing that as well, to the best of my ability. The Iron Guard, the Crafter's Guild, all stand ready to assist. The Shrine of Gild has been helping out much, and so has the shelters. Do not be so proud as to not seek help there. We've had successful missions outside of the city I heard, we still have enough food to last us out, and we can always push forward to more, if I have to charge into the enemy hordes on my own to deliver it to you all. So rest assured... None will go hungry, none will go without their due, all will be considered," he calls to them, and then he inclines a small bit.
Lyiana feels another potato hit her smack in the face, making her lip bleed with the contact and then hands are grabbing her, pulling her to safety as she is trembling. She goes willingly, because how can she not? People are trying to throw food at her and grab her and she's already had one incident happen this week. She goes, because she must.
Umay checked command + theology against difficulty 45, resulting in 53, 8 higher than the difficulty.
The guards move in with a little disregard for the rioter, grunting as they force themselves forward and latch on to the lady, Lyiana and Lazarus. Lazarus curses but does not combat it knowing full well that he is overwhelmed. He scurries over to the gate to pull a horse. "We have to help." He shouts to Lyiana, "Get a messenger to deliver a letter to Alistair, sign it little bird!"
Umay is sent falling backwards to fall flat on the hard ground, the force of the fall enough to knock the wind out of her. She winces and breathes in short breaths as she tries to recover, barely opening her eyes in time to see the man's cold look. Her eyes follow him for as long as they can, before she tries to force herself to her feet. "ENOUGH." She shouts authoritatively, her eyes burning with righteous determination as she tries to bring the people to a stand still. She breathes heavily and looks out over the crowd before demanding of them, "Look at yourselves! You are tearing each other apart like animals. All for food that we can share, that was given to us as Petrichor's bounty. Do you think that the Pantheon would feel pride that this is the way that we act when we are hungry? When we are scared? No, they want us to be strong, they NEED us to be strong for one another...Tehom lets us glimpse at this side of ourselves, so that we know what we must avoid becoming no matter what. Do you all truly want to stand here looking like that twisted reflection that we all must carry and be better than? I know that this is difficult, but for the Gods above, please. We just need to be strong. For the weak, for the children, and for our own good."
She is still breathing heavily and her cheeks are bruised, her lower lip poofed out from the stupid potato. "Alright," she says, her fingers trembling as she calls a messenger from somewhere not in the crowd. She whispers urgently to them and they run off, quick as a fawn. It's most likely Lyiana's little messenger girl.
Merek has done extremely well managing the rolls of his crowd, from when they were about to reach the red zone and riot themselves to getting the people to quickly depart the scene. No one wants to be caught under the arm of the Guard or worse! One person reaches out to Merek, "Gods bless you Merek Black!" What started this all quickly ends. Upper Boroughs people are helping Lower boroughs people with their valuables when the riot breaks out, getting groups of families and their livelihoods to safer grounds! The people disperse around Merek, freely.
The Mercier guards extract Lazarus and Lyiana to safety, only a few potato made welts to speak for. The sight of the Mercier weapons makes a few rioters break from the pack, hollaring down at the Mercier name! But others start to throw their potatoes at the Mercier Guard! "They only benefit themselves!! Get them!" Heckling sounds made! Umay's words make about eight or so, break away from the riot, not enough to really do much more than call to the few hearts that hear her! And while she has dispatched a few kinder souls away from their shameful actions, angry eyes turn to her as well now, "She speaks as if she has food! She doesn't know what it's like to starve!"
Umay checked command + empathy against difficulty 15, resulting in 55, 40 higher than the difficulty.
Merek has rolled a critical success!
Merek checked charm + etiquette against difficulty 45, resulting in 105, 60 higher than the difficulty.
"I don't know what it's like to starve? You don't know what this Siege has put me through, what it has put us all through." Umay tells the five men turning their attention to her, gesturing out over all of the frightened and angered faces before them. "I have watched a woman die before me for the very first time. I knelt there before her and watched her organs shimmer in the faint light cast by a lantern, knowing that there would have been nothing that I could have done to save that soul." Tears start to twinkle in her eyes and she murmers, "She begged me for help on her breaths, gurgled by the sound of her own blood filling her throat. She was torn apart and eaten to the bone and all I could do was try to ease her pain in the final moment. So none of you dare tell one another that we haven't known the pain of something. Pain is not something to be compared or afflicted, it is something meant to be treated and healed, to show compassion towards and not bitterness."
Umay meant inflicted, not afflicted.
Lyiana stands beside the guard lines and listens to Umay's story. Hearing of the death of a woman and letting a hand drift to her face as she watched several men die in front of her, in her shop of all places. Her eyes shimmer and she takes a breath, putting a hand to the wall to steady herself. She looks pale and her lip bleeds freely as she hasn't done anything to stop it. Though she looks fragile, she looks all right as far as composure goes, though just.
Merek turns on his heel, then he pulls his cloak over him, before he moves over to the rioters, not far from Umay. He then calls out in a loud voice, one with authority, "Listen to this! You all clamber for food, and chase those that have it, but in the end, it will profit you little. Already some food remains trampled on the ground... But do not worry for that." He then takes a small breath and sighs, "Look at this faithful Priestess, look at that man over there, the Mercier, just trying to help, even the tailor, with all the words she has, tries her /best/ to put in what she has, even if it's not much. These men and women will help provide," he then echoes a loud voice, "I will help you provide! The same I promised the others, is the same that I promise you all now. With Limerance's oath in one hand, and Gild's generosity in the others, in this time of need, what I have, what the Guard has, what Gild has... What your neighbor has. It is meant to be shared. We are /one/. We all stand as one!" He then tears his cloak off and tosses it aside, and rents open his doublet.
"These clothes? As fine as they are? Mean /nothing/ to me! I've been out there on the front lines, I've seen what it's like..." He then points to the Heavens, "But today the Gods are on our side. We stand as one, /united/ against the enemy. We shall overcome, as one. We shall be /AS ONE/. WE WILL FIGHT. AS ONE! And not ONE SOUL will be left behind if it is within our power! Your city stands with you citizens, so do not worry, and do not fret," he tosses his staff aside, "For we are willing to give all, to see you rise above it all." He then motions to the others who have been there this whole time, Lyiana, Lazarus, Umay, as if he's putting the weight of their words behind his, "All we've said comes from the heart, now choose to stand down... And be the change you want to see, for no man starves this night, under our watch together," Merek tells them.
Lazarus climbs his horse, whiping the line across to turn the beast around and charge at the group. It may not seem like it but the Merciers are farmers, people from the ground and traveling merchants almost glued to their horses. With a tap of the back of his boot, he shoves the horse forward to keep the riots away from the manor. The guards fix to the gate with their weapons drawn.
Through the painful stories of sister Umay to the riveting display of righteousness and zeal to stand together, the rioters start to lose their momentum. There's a few hooded figures that run from the crowd and to the eye, disappear... or was it a trick of the eye?! Through the prolonged speech, sunshine rips through the overcast sky and descends upon Merek in some God glorious way! It gives credit to his words. It makes people murmur. The efforts both put afoot by Umay and Merek, on the backs of neighbours like Lyiana and Lazarus, start to bring the calm through the people. Many cry out as they drop to their knees and beg for forgiveness from the gods, seeking their confessions behind pulled hands tugged up and crawling to sit before Umay. Others lose the heat that needs to be had to take on armed Mercier guards. And still others start to rush away before the Iron Guard is called.
In the wake, the space will open up around the potato merchant. All his sacks of potatoes are gone. Many are strewn around the cobblestone ground and stepped on, most, are just gone into the pockets of the hungry. While the power of words are strong enough to keep people from bloody violence, they aren't strong enough to reduce the fear that starvation causes, that a siege causes. Until those promises of food are seen too, many will hoard what they can, for that is how it is... And that poor Merchant? He's alive, he staggers to his feet. He's bruised and bloody, but he's alive, though does slump hopelessly against an empty cart.
Lazarus rides his horse to the merchant, staring down at him with a frown. His gaze raises up to scan the sorroundings, acknowledging the efforts of Umay and Merek. The hooded figures get ignored by the Mercier merchant, "Do not worry about this mess, the guild will take care of it. Come to the Guild Hall and we will cover your expenses." He says softly to the poor merchant, a bit shamed at the behavior of the people.
Umay looks over the others that go to crawl before her and she drops to her knees to sit with them. "It is okay. I will listen to each of you now and carry the burdens on your heart for you no matter how long it takes. None of your confessions will go unheard..." She goes look over at the bloodied man and reaches out to take one of the repenters hands in hers, "I just need to tend to that man's wounds. You each are welcome to come with me and offer your apologies to him. It will speak to your bravery to be able to admit to him that what was done was wrong and to ask what you can do for him." She stands up and heads over to the potato seller, getting supplies from her sash. "Please, hold still sir. I'm here to help..."
Umay checked intellect + medicine against difficulty 15, resulting in 21, 6 higher than the difficulty.
Lyiana checked perception against difficulty 15, resulting in 22, 7 higher than the difficulty.
Lyiana's eyes move up and perhaps unnoticed by the crowd, she watches a cloaked figure pop out of existance. Her eyes remain on that spot as she moves toward the gate, moving over to a woman and leaning down to a child, whispering soothing words to them even if her eyes look over every five minutes. Her gaze moves all the way around the crowd, her body still tense as a bowstring even as she hands out coins for food and clothing. She offers help to those who need it, even if they were against her earlier.
Merek takes a moment to look up at the light which bathed him, and then he himself falls to his knees and worships. Because there is nothing else to do at that point. After a bit, he settles up, debating where the dark shadows had fled. His work is hardly done, and he speaks to Meeka, "Send forth for those that have the food and can help, I intend to keep my promise." Then he moves off to guard folk, and make sure people make it home safe.
It will be said on this day, the 14th day of the 3rd month in the year of 1006, that amongst the terrors of a siege, people had begun to lost faith in the Upper Boroughs. They will hear how there was discord sewn between those who lived in the Uppers and those who were refugees from the Lowers, and how that discord nearly lost the crowd to violence and selfishness. However, amongst the tides of discontent, greed, worry, fear, discrimination, resentment, and all other poorly harbored feelings, comes the story of hope, of faith, of a passionate display of a few to remind the masses to work together, stand together, for that is the only way to win against the Silence! Amongst them, is heard the tales of Merek Black standing in a ray of sunshine, a prominent figure in the unraveling events, poised with the conviction of the Gods to quell rioters whose shouts for Food had over run the square, answering that all he had to give would be granted the good people of Arx! They will speak of sister Umay bringing the words of the Gods back to the people who had it in their minds to forget and then, she took them in to forgive their wayward paths! They will speak of Lazarus Mercier, a man who stood up strong in the face of the angry mob, rallying the reminder that merchants should not fear to walk with their goods down the market streets, that all had to stand together. They also speak of his Mercier Guards keeping the peace and rescuing the Tailor Lyiana from crownsworn gone mad in their cries for hunger. In the end, the crowds dispersed and peace, for now, holds.
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