Achmel's Circus

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Achmel's Amazing Circus is set up in the middle (slightly to the side of the road of course) of Wilderness Point. It's a huge gaudy tent that has seen better days, but looks sturdy in spite of the dirt that covers nearly the whole thing. Inside it's warm in spite of the biting wind outside, and it's brightly lit to accommodate the growing crowd of people that are gathering. The crowd is excitedly talking to one another about what might actually be /in/ the circus. The show has yet to start, but nearly everyone is in their seats speculating.

Morgan is sitting happily in her seat as she is cutting a apple and offering pieces to any one near her.

Yelrona has heard about Achmel's circus setting up shop, and is _not_ happy... her prior experiences with a similar establishment were not positive ones. So she's more than a little skeptical as she joins the crowd, taking a seat in the first row and watching everything attentively.

The wonders of Ea are not lost on Kaj--he is far from jaded. In fact, he is far from cool when it comes to the circus. He's dressed up (which for him means a lot less clothes than usual, but more hand-print-on-pecs tats!) and has thoughtfully a) bathed and b) removed the Everburning torch from his hair so as not to mess with the light inside the tent. He sits in front and to the side of where Morgan and Yelrona are, having to sit on the floor to not block everyone's view. On his shoulders stand a half dozen ravens, all bobbing and bopping excitedly as they and he seem to chitter chatter.

He has bought an enormous treat which can only be described as a candy-floss BOUQUET due to its size. It is purple, of course.

Morgan leans over and offers Rona a apple slice and a whole but decord apple to Kaj. "Want some?"

Yelrona regards Morgan's apple slice and nods. "Thank you," she says, munching the apple slice happily as she goes back to keeping an eye on everything.

Kaj leans back and opens his mouth so the apple can be dropped into it, though he's trying to not laugh nor disturb his avian amigos.

It is now that Achmel himself comes out in resplendently gaudy clothing. His shirt is bright purple, his pants fluorescent orange and pink in stripes. They don't match his blue suede shoes, which does surprisingly match his tall blue top hat. He dofts it showing a yellow interior for the hat and bows to the audience. "Ladies and gentleman of all genders and races across this great nation! I bring you wonders from across the world! Things which you never thought to see up close and in person. Things which until now were only a mystery and unseen by your own two eyes." He motions toward with his hat toward the back of the tent where they are dragging out a cage. "Beginning with! THE HELLHOUND!"

Indeed the cage holds a vicious looking black dog dripping magma from its mouth. The creature looks unhappy in the too-small cage, but the man wheeling it out looks even more unhappy to be here, his arms covered in thick material that is scorched.

Morgan chuckles and drops the apple in the mouth "Well at least you did not want to be fed momma bird style." She looks up as the hounds are brought out "Crap last time I dealt with those I had to help fend off a whole pack of them."

Yelrona regards Achmel, the caged hellhound, and the man wheeling it out with equal suspicion. Honestly, she's tempted to just shut the place down on general principles, but the last time she did something like that she was filling out paperwork for two months. And she has no particular love for hellhounds, having taken some nasty wounds from the breed over the years. So she stays in her seat and watches, invoking the spirit of Tarien to help her be In On The Joke.

Kaj half grins while chewing the apple, which, to no one's surprise perhaps, did fit in one bite.

He looks at the Hellhound--no one around him can see his face but it is suddenly somber.

The cage is led around in a big circle so that everyone can get a good look at it, those in the front row getting a very good look at it indeed. The don't let it out of its cage however. Then without aplomb the cage is wheeled back into the back of the tent. "And now! THE COCKATRICE!" Achmel waves his top hat again and admittedly makes a good show grinning at the audience and riling them up into excitement. A woman comes out with what seriously looks like a plucked chicken in her hands. The bird is blindfolded and she lifts it up in the air as she takes it around in a circle so everyone can see it.

Yelrona laughs, despite herself. Whatever this Achmel's deal is, he certainly knows his showmanship. And as she regards the hellhound she relaxes visibly. "Good thing it's blindfolded!" she calls out, laughing. “Cockatrices are dangerous!"

Morgan eyes widen when she hears about a Cockatrice "Oh I never seen one, I wish I could study it." Most wizards die from them wanting to understanding things.

Kaj watches with amazement, having never come across even a stuffed cockatrice before.

"Next my friends... We have a magical item found in the Desolation. If you will reach under your seats you will find cloth to hold over your head... trust me you will want it!" Another woman appears like magic beside him to hand him a bowl. There's a miniature storm going on inside the bowl and he gives everyone a moment to build the tension and allow them to get the cloths. Then he lifts the bowl and gives it a short jerk. Suddenly the storm is /outside/ the bowl. Storm clouds filling the roof of the tent and rain pouring down on the crowd. Lightning strikes the big stakes in the middle of the tent keeping them up and now you can tell that they're made of metal.

Morgan does as told but she is looking at that bowl like she wants it and to study it.

Yelrona follows directions and regards the bowl curiously.

As if arriving via lightning strike, Ga'Elian suddenly appears sitting beside Yelrona. He is surrounded by a thin bubble of air. He looks at the magical storm clouds, and says, "What's going on here?"

Achmel gives the bowl a second jerk and suddenly the storm is gone - and so too is all the water from the storm. Not a drop of it remains on the crowd nor on the ground in the tent. There's a moment of silence in the crowd and then wild applause as the Achmel takes a bow and hands off the bowl once again. "Amazing? Achmel delivers on this promise! And there's more yet to come! Like - The magical unicorn!" There's a brief pause and the same man who had led the dog around comes out now with an arched-neck and somewhat beleaguered looking white horse with a horn on its head. It looks clearly underfed, and slightly dirty.

Kaj claps wildly, though the force and enthusiasm diminish rather rapidly at seeing the calamitous condition of the unicorn....he stops clapping and shifts uncomfortably on his haunches.

You know it's rare to get Morgan mad, most have to put a great amount of effort to do so, but she she sees a unicorn in such shape. She lets out a few naughty words and follows up with "Unicorns should be free or better treated." And then gives more sailor words.

GAME: Ga'Elian rolls Know/nat: aliased to Knowledge/Nature+1: (7)+9+1: 17
GAME: Morgan rolls knowledge/nature: (5)+10: 15

Yelrona regards the horse with a horn on its head, which she doesn't for a moment believe is a real unicorn, and which honestly isn't the worst-treated animal she's seen today, with relative equanimity.

...or perhaps equinimity.

Ga'Elian says to Kaj, "If that were a unicorn, you'd be right."

Kaj glances at Ga'Elian, "What?" he asks, since he didn't say anything, but is catching on to the fact that it's a horse. So he starts talking to it.

"Greetings!" he says, using his animal-speaking gifts.

The animal immediately stops for Kaj, blinking at him and then neighing happily. The man holding the halter gives it a tug but the horse digs its hooves in and in spite of its diminished capacity it's pure stubbornness causes the man to curse soundly at it. Achmel notices and frowns. Then he lets out a laugh. "It seems one of our guests can speak with unicorns. Now-now friend, these animals are magical and often unfriendly to those they don't know." He waves a theatrical finger at Kaj and motions for the man to pull the horse away. Which he does firmly, dragging the poor horse forward.

"Achmel! I will buy that Unicorn from you!" bellows Kaj, smiling. "We shall speak after the function!"

Yelrona is amused by all the horsing around, but remains silent.

Morgan leans in to Kaj and says, "let me boost you with a few spells to help the said buying."

Ga'Elian raises a thinly gloved hand as if holding an imaginary key toward lock on the door of the hellhound's cage. He turns his hand and says, "Open sesame." (prestidigitation)

With the horse - unicorn - led away Achmel beams at Kaj and nods subtly. Then he waves expressively with his hands. "And now, a bit of music from our magical self-playing harp while we set up our next show for you!" The harp is wheeled out and begins playing soft music as Achmel wanders back into the back of the tent.

Ga'Elian looks at Kaj and says, "Well, maybe the hellhound is genuine. They're using a real magic lock on its cage."

Yelrona nods. "It is, as far as I can tell."

Morgan watches the cage. "Maybe the circus master pet the hell hounds to calm them."

After a long moment Achmel returns to wave off the harp and grins at the crowd. "Are you ready for our finale? For something which no other show can promise you? Watch and be amazed! At the Dance of the Wavyrn!" He encourages something else to come onstage and this time it's the woman again. She sashays onto the stage with a cage at her side. It's a smushed animal in there and when she opens it the creature gladly slips out. It's a batlike thing with a long deadly tail. It looks around the tent. If it's a wavyrn it's a very small one. It's shoulders are hunched and the woman begins to dance a little, her performance seductive and quite good.

At this same moment there's a small noise and then a little golden fae dragon lands on Yelrona's shoulder, peering out at the show with distinct interest.

"I wouldn't mess with it, were I you," Rona comments. "It's considering eating its handler. And--" she cuts off at the Dance of the Wyvern, and the arrival at the dragon. "Hello," she whispers to the dragon. "Sorry I don't have any fish for you." She reaches into her pocket and pulls out a piece of cotton candy in the form of a trout. "Um. Well, except for this."

Morgan hands her last apple to Rona to share with the little dragon, but she watches for the dancing wyvern and hopes nothing goes wrong.

Ga'Elian just watches the baby wyvern, but when the faerie dragon pops in he calls out, "Sparklewing, check this out." Then another, less mature faerie dragon, this one with red scales and multi hued butterfly wings pops in, hovering in the air directly above the ranger's head.

It seems as though the woman knows what she's doing. Or at least she's trained the wyvern somehow to not attack her. The woman dances back and forth and sends the wyvern out in an arc of flight before calling it back to her.

Meanwhile the little golden dragon is eating the candy like it's going to vanish on her. It's gone in a flash and she sighs a happy, "fish!" into Yelrona's neck. She then turns her head toward the other smaller dragon and seems to be interested. She shows all of her teeth and wiggles her hindquarters. "Badpeople!" She says emphatically and nods toward Achmel. "Keptmeinacagelikeabird! Stupidpeople!" She talks very quickly running all her words together.

Yelrona nods. "It's true, they did."

Yelrona does her best to soothe the dragon. For now she's not too worried about the wyvern... they are at best unfriendly creatures, and this one doesn't seem to be being abused in any way. This whole circus makes her more than a little uncomfortable, but she hasn't seen anything to actually object to yet.

Ga'Elian just doesn't know quite what to do besides observe. Carefully. Finally, je says to his own faerie dragon, "Heya, Sparklewing. How about you go check things out behind the curtain... see what's really going on, eh?" <sylvan>

Morgan says after Elian "And be safe ok." <sylvan>

The woman is wrapping up her show, shoving the little wyvern into it's smaller cage and picking it up to carry it off. Which is when Achmel returns to the stage to thunderous applause. No one seems to notice the tiny fae dragon vanishing as he arrives. It is noticeable however when there's a tiny golden streak flying through the air toward him. One that few seem to notice and yet is... completely obvious. He seems not to notice as he's wrapping up. Not until the streak comes rushing back to Yelrona and... Achmel's pants are on fire. Literally. On. Fire.

Yelrona is amused. A bit more extreme than she would have gone for, but then, _she_ wasn't the one tied up in a cage, and she has no real sympathy for Achmel. "Hey Achmel!" she shouts out, with no particular urgency, "your pants are on fire!"

Kaj looks up, "Fire?" He was obviously distracted by the woman and also by his gigantic candy floss.

With that, Rona sneaks off into the shadows. Perhaps to investigate something? Perhaps to another appointment? Perhaps to find fish for the golden fae dragon? Who can say, really... she's mysterious.

Ga'Elian rises up and stealths himself away just like how he arrived. Moving unseen and unheard, he heads out back behind the tent.

Kaj pushes off the ground and goes over to help Achmel with the intent of slapping the flames out before they spread.

Morgan says to Kaj as she moves with him but does not give him a smack "I wish mages could create water like the clerics right now."

Achmel smacks at his clothing to get the fire out, and Kaj helps. Finally the flames are out and breathlessly Achmel declares the circus over. There's a round of scattered applause and people head out with a few backwards glances. "Would you like to talk about that unicorn now?" Achmel smiles at Kaj.

Kaj squats down to be able to hear Achmel better. "I'd like to talk to the unicorn first...but I'm only interested in the beast, you can keep the horn," he adds, in a whisper.

Morgan nods "It's not a Unicorn we all know it.... AND IF you ever capture one and show it off as some pretty toy the high count of rangers and druids and this one wizard will have a nice chat with you."

Ga'Elian stands a little off from Achmel's back-stage set-up and faces out toward the forest. He sounds one long-lasting note on his hunting horn, LOUD. Almost immediately Erithamiel flies into view, answering with a sky-rending SKREEEEE. Ga'Elian smacks one hand with a coiled whip firmly grasped in the other hand, and strides menacingly toward Achmel.

"I don't know what you're saying, but if you want to talk to it before you buy it I don't care." Achmel starts walking back toward the back of the tent but stops as Erithamiel comes flying in and Ga'Elian steps toward him menacingly. "Um... Sir? Can I help you?"

GAME: Ga'Elian rolls intimidate: (19)+1: 20

"Well Achmel, I shall have a word, then circle back to you..." says Kaj, and with that, he goes where he is led so as to chat with the horse and figure out what it wants. If he can get it for a fair price, he will likely buy its freedom.


Achmel looks suitably intimidated by Ga'Elian's bluster, as if he really believes that Ga'Elian might whip him. "Um... That is... We do the best we can with the resources we have! These are dangerous animals! We need magical cages and those are expensive." He seems to straighten up a little.

Morgan stands near Elian though she does not want to make things harder here.

The griffon circle low overhead. Meanwhile, Ga'Elian lowers his whip but still fidgets with it. He says in a calmer voice, "Then I daresay you can't afford to be in your chosen business. How did you obtain your specimens, anyway?"

"Adventurers. They bring things in and I buy from them." Achmel glowers at Ga'Elian. "I have a sale to complete if you would so kindly /move/."

Morgan sighs as she was upset at the events here she just says a few arcane words and takes off in the air.

Ga'Elian says, "Fine. Sell your horse to the giant-born. But I'll not stand idly by while you abuse these creatures. You have a hellhound, a cockatrice, and a wyvern, eh? I know the greed of adventurers, so I'll give you 100 gold for the lot, and you'll take it, because that's the extent of my generosity. Then if I ever hear again that you are maltreating beasts, I'll track you down and your losses will be... worse."

Achmel seems to consider this for a long moment, but he eyes the whip and finally nods. "Fine." He holds out his hand for the money and only when he has in hand does he nod once and head into the back. Good to his word he sells the horse to Kaj. All of the animals are set free then into Ga'Elian's care out in the woods a bit back from where the tent is set up, the hellhound carefully so. He eyes the elf once and shakes his head. "Be it on your head now." Then he stiffly walks off to help his crew pack up.

Ga'Elian tells Erithamiel to chase the wyvern away from the settlements and shoots the hellhound to kill it quickly.