Sajenese in the Empire

Post date: Mar 17, 2009 7:42:46 PM

Ozimius is in his room catching up with his growing array of trophies when he hears a whisper, in Sajenese, from out of nowhere, "Brother of the Dark, your attention is needed away from your breathless companions. Come to the Broken Hilt Tavern if you wish to join your ancestors' legacy."

* * *

Ozimius is making the rounds about town, checking up on the activities of the thieves in town, when the Sajenese voice from the shadows invades his thoughts again, "Ozimius Khan, join your brothers and realize your legacy. We await you at the Broken Hilt."

Confused, Ozimius looks around for the source of the voice. Unsure if the voice is real or another trick of his "friends," he resolves to get to the source and makes his way to the Broken Hilt.

Taking a seat in a shadowed corner, Ozimius scans the room suspiciously, looking for anyone showing more than normal interest in him.

The Sajenese voice sounds as if it is across the table from Ozimius, "An excellent choice of seating, my brother assassin."

Smoke appears in the seat across from Ozimius and it slowly takes on a humanoid shape. The smoke then begins to solidify until a man with features and build very similar to Ozimius is seated across from him. He is bald with a narrowly trimmed beard that follows his jaw line and comes to a point on his chin. He has the sallow complexion of a Sajenese.

Smiling, he speaks Sajenese in a familiar voice, "I am Aris Castigon. I have been watching you since you arrived in Redemption, Master Khan, and you have impressed me on some occasions and mystified me on others. You are obviously Sajenese, but you do not seem to have ever been in Saje. Where did you travel to Redemption from?"

Ozimius looks over the bald assassin, obviously impressed.

"My parents were slaves on a plantation. I do not know for sure what my past is, although I have my suspicions. I escaped and wandered through Tanglewood. After that, I just wandered, living on the streets and stealing what I needed. To my knowledge, I have never been in Saje," Ozimius explains.

He continues, "You said you have been watching me. May I know why?"

The Sajenese assassin raises an eyebrow and continues in Sajenese, "Enslaved? You must have been near Troll's Bridge. Are those the streets of which you mention? Why have I been watching you, you ask? First of all because you are Sajenese and second because you seem to possess a special gift of tolerance that most Sajenese never develop."

Ozimius replies, "Yes, Troll's Bridge is the home of the streets that raised me."

Ozi looks at Aris curiously and continues.

"Tolerant? Me? " Ozi chuckles. "Few would agree with you on that point. They do not agree with my methods. I have had nothing but misunderstandings since coming to Redemption. I tried to make friends with a Half Fiend, was betrayed and almost murdered. I tried to help another Sajenese get more control over the city and only succeeded in being run out of town with a price on my head."

Ozi pauses for a moment, "Do not get me wrong. I have made some friends as well. Luvian, Tracyka, and Tesela, but most of the poeple here do not trust me. I suspect not even my companions at times."

Ozi looks Aris over, "Which brings me to other questions. Why should I listen to you? Why should I trust you? How do I know that like every other attempt I have made at befriending poeple, that you will not end up trying to kill me as well?"

A broad smile forms on Aris' lips showing his teeth and more importantly an alchemical tooth.

"There you go impressing me again, Ozimius", Aris chides. "Sajenese relationships are never based on trust. In fact, quite the opposite. Use and be used, kill and be ready to die...all the way of life for a Sajenese. I would expect you aiming at me more than me at you at this point, as I believe you are no threat to me...but, then again, it only takes one moment of distraction and it is all over."

Ozi laughs genuinely, "Well, if being ready to die is part of being Sajense, then I am most definitely Sajenese. I do as I wish. I take what I want. I protect those who protect me and plot against those who have given me no reason to trust them. I do not care about right or wrong or those who claim to be moral."

"Where were they when I was a slave?" Ozi scoffs openly, "They were too busy in their own self-righteous world to notice no matter what their words were. I learned at the end of a whip that the strong rule the weak and the weak obey or are punished. It is the natural order of things and I agree with it totally."

Ozi looks over Aris again, "You think me to be no threat. This is probably true. But as you say, it only takes one moment for the world to change. But then again, allies are stronger than servants. Give me reason to trust you and you will earn my trust in return. Betray that trust and I will add your head to my collection of friends or die trying. So, I ask you again. What is your interest in me?"

The assassin's expression turns to stone, "I have a path for you to follow...or should I say continue to follow, since you are already on it. I need you to leverage your relationship with the young Lord Chicdell to infiltrate the underworld in Troll's Bridge."

He raises a hand to stifle any retorts or objects to this point, "Believe it or not, I am not asking you to betray your friend. I need you to take advantage of the chaos he will create when he ousts his grandfather."

He pulls something out of his breast-pocket and conceals it on the table with his hand.

"Since Luvian is no longer interfering in Kramer, Saje is extending its shadowy presence to Troll's Bridge," the assassin explains. "It is the perfect environment for Saje to get a foothold in the Empire and the perfect opportunity for you to regain your family's place in Saje."

He lifts his hand revealing a signet ring of exquisite workmanship.

"Help Saje succeed in bringing competition against Thieves' Thought and restore the Khan Family to prominence in Saje. The Castigons and the Khans were allies...even friends...before your grandfather was banished," Aris urges. "Claim your family ring as payment forward in this mission. Use it to gather the Sajenese already in Troll's Bridge to help yourself and Lord Chicdell to power and influence."

Ozi listens to Aris intently, then looks off as if lost for a moment.

"Wait! Hold on! My grandfather? You know about my family?" Ozi stands excitedly and leans over the table to grab Aris, grinning from ear to ear. "Can you tell me about them? Please?"

Aris instinctively maneuvers defensively, placing a dagger at Ozimius' throat before he realizes Ozimius' intentions. He withdraws the blade and sits back, consternation in his expression.

"I was too young to remember your grandparents, much less my own, Aris begins. "I do remember when your parents left Saje; a typical cloak and dagger affair. Your father, Zorus, never made it out a live, but your mother, Helsis, managed to stowaway on some privateer ship. Being pregnant with you, she was not her stealthy self and was caught. When the pirates realized she was with child, they sold her to some slavers who in turn sold her to the owner of the plantation you mentioned. She died giving birth to you. Of course, you were taken in by another slave family, but when you were old enough, you were sold off to some innkeeper in Troll's Bridge."

Ozimius ignores Aris' dagger, concentrating on his words. Returning to his seat, he listens intently.

"So my parents are both dead? Do I have any family left alive? What is this you said about my family ring?" Ozimius asks.

Aris picks up the ring and sets in front of Ozimius, "This was your grandfather's ring. He was the head of the Khans, which is one of the largest clans of Saje. Currently they are scattered and leaderless. Those still in Saje are in hiding and most of the rest are in Kramer and Troll's Bridge also living in the shadows. If you can rally your family in Troll's Bridge and re-establish their sense of purpose it will go a long way to bolstering those in Kramer and Tryst."

Fire flashes in Ozi's eyes and he slips the ring on his finger.

"Then I do have family and they are in hiding!" Ozi stabs the table with Imhiakaam's Gift. "No family of mine will hide like rats! How did this happen? Who is responsible?"

The assassin smirks, "Actually, they are very good at it. It how families survive in down times, but I get your point. Sajenese intrigue is a dangerous thing. Like I said before, it only takes one moment of distraction and it is all over."

"Well, if you have been watching me, you know I am not good at being subtle. I will take care of this. Just point me in the right direction. You will find me as loyal and dedicated an ally as I am dangerous an enemy."

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