your move


Loc lies on his cot, staring at the ceiling.

Lanisen sits cross-legged on his cot, propping up his chin with one hand. He appears to be playing a game of Foxes and Wolves with himself, using eight pebbles of vaguely similar shape and hue.

Loc turns his head to watch Lanisen.
Loc asks, “Having fun?”

Lanisen mms, squinting at the “board”. He sighs and sweeps the pebbles into an untidy pile, evidently irritated with his losing self. Or his winning self. Hard to tell. “I can’t stand this waitin’,” he mutters.

Loc sits up and leans close, “All right then.”
Loc mumbles “I got a plan.””, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “… … a plan.””, to Lanisen.

Lanisen glances at him, raising his eyebrows hopefully.

Loc mumbles “You, me, and the girl can get out of here. Colin’s a traitor. By rights, he’s worse then us. We have no promise to him. He has no authority to hold us.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “… … … the girl can … out … here. … a traitor. by rights, he’s worse then us. … have … promise … … … … no … … … us.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “Had I come to this conclusion sooner we’d be better off.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “Had … come … … … sooner we’d be better …”, to Lanisen.

Lanisen lifts his head from the fist propping it up, glancing over in Colin’s direction nervously. He shifts his weight and leans toward Loc. “What’re you sayin’?”

Loc claps a hand over Lanisen’s mouth and places a finger to his mouth, grinning.
Loc mumbles “If we make a break from it, maybe, just maybe, we can settle. Technically, Colin had no right to capture you.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “… … make … … … … … just maybe, we … settle. Technically, … had … … to … you.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “He was stripped a his title and rank and all that fancy stuff by the King.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “He … stripped … … title and rank and … … … stuff … … King.”, to Lanisen.

Lanisen startles back, swatting Loc’s hand away, and stares down at the jumbled pile of Foxes and Wolves. He absently begins to arrange the pieces for another one-sided game.
Lanisen mumbles “So… that was all a ruse, you comin’ clean? Or did you just change your mind?”, to Loc.
Lanisen mumbles “… … … all … ruse, … … clean? Or … … just change … …”, to Loc.

Loc mumbles “No, I want to go clean–but not here. I got a dreadful fear of hanging.”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “No, … want to … clean–but … here. … got a … … of hanging.”, to Lanisen.
Loc asks quietly, “You in?”

Lanisen hehs softly, indecision clear on his face. He moves one piece slowly, debating over its placement longer than is strictly necessary.
Lanisen mumbles “If you go… I won’t tell ’em where you went, or how.”, to Loc.
Lanisen mumbles “… you … I … … ’em … … went, … …”, to Loc.

Loc frowns.
Loc mumbles “Why won’t you come?”, to Lanisen.
Loc mumbles “… … you come?”, to Lanisen.

Lanisen doesn’t look at Loc.

Loc asks quietly, “Why not?”

Lanisen mumbles “He said… that maybe I could learn somethin’. You know. Have a house, an’ a job – a real honest job. Somethin’ to do that’s useful.”, to Loc.
Lanisen mumbles “He said… that maybe … could … somethin’. … … … a … … a … – a real … … … to … … useful.”, to Loc.

Loc asks, “Who?”

Lanisen jerks his head toward Colin.

Loc’s expression is serious. “Lanisen, do you /know/ what a traitor is?”
Loc says quietly, “Haven’t you wondered why he won’t show his face?”
Loc says, “The king ain’t gonna listen to him. The King cast him out of court. By the Mane, we might hang for just being /around/ him.”

Lanisen swallows, moving one of the darker pebbles into place.

Loc says quietly, “I can take you somewhere Lanny. We can start over. You can… be my brother. We’ll be honest. I can teach you about the forest. And hunting. We can be honest.”
Loc says, “I’ve never had a brother before. It’d be nice.”

Lanisen’s eyes flicker to Loc’s face, dark and distrustful. “How do I know you ain’t gonna just turn back the way things were?”

Loc says, “I came back for you didn’t I? And I’m offering to bring you now, ain’t I?” He gestures to Shenzi. “She agreed to it this afternoon. I waited to talk to you.”
Loc says, “There’s a difference between running for your life and being bad Lanny.”

Lanisen’s eyes flicker to the sleeping woman, something like fear crossing his face. “No,” he says instantly.

Loc asks, “What are you afraid of?”

Lanisen mumbles “You don’t really think she’s gonna go clean and stay clean, do you?”, to Loc.
Lanisen mumbles “… don’t … … she’s … go … … stay clean, do you?”, to Loc.
Lanisen moves another pebble and considers the makeshift board.

Loc says, “I do. She at least deserves a second chance. She hadn’t done anything that bad before she met Myrd. And Myrd and Zan had a way of making you do things.”

Lanisen shoots Loc a disbelieving glance from the corner of his eye. Clearly he’s not buying it.

Loc asks, “Don’t you think everyone deserves a second chance?”

Lanisen flinches slightly. This definitely hits far too close to home. “Loc…” He darts another glance at Shenzi.

Loc says, “We can send her away if she doesn’t seem right.”

Lanisen says, a bit helplessly, “It ain’t gonna work like that, an’ you know it!”

Loc says, “It will.”
Loc says confidently, “There ain’t anything here for us. And we’ll be able to put plenty a room tween her and us if we have to.”

Lanisen covers his face with his hands. “No… we won’t. Loc, she knows more’n enough to put us both behind bars for… who knows how long? An’ she /won’t/ stay clean, you know it!”

Loc says quietly, “We got enough to hang her if necessary. And I think she will. I’d be willing to give her a chance.”

Lanisen sighs heavily. “Loc… she’s /trouble/… she’ll get caught. She’ll get you both caught.”

Loc says, “Jana was trouble. She didn’t get me caught.”
Loc says, “Jana left me for Myrd.”

Lanisen’s eyes dart to Loc’s. “That’s… that’s harsh.” He looks away uncomfortably and adds, “‘M sorry.” He pauses a moment, shoving pebbles around without much regard to strategy, then continues to reason, “But Jana – she was a different kind of trouble. She’s canny. Shenzi ain’t canny. She’ll get you both hung.”

Loc snorts, “Jana wasn’t nothing but a treacherous–‘ he calls her a bad name. “She killed Zan.”
Loc says, “My whole life all she ever wanted was to use me to get ahead.”
Loc says, “And for being so clever, I think Jana is going to try and free Myrd by herself.”

Lanisen repeats, “She killed Zan?”

Loc nods.

Lanisen doesn’t comment on this last.

Loc says, “He made a move on her. So she killed him.”

Lanisen hehs. After a moment, he says quietly, “Good.”

Loc says, “I thought the same.”
Loc falls silent, giving a loud sigh.

Lanisen simply nods. He finally glances back toward Shenzi. “I’m… not going, if she’s going. But… I’ve been sleeping real hard since I got cut up. Can’t nothin’ wake me up, most times. An’ I’ve got real used to hearin’ people comin’ and goin’.” He gives Loc a significant look.

Loc looks pained. “I’m gonna miss you…you moron.”
Loc speaks with a brotherly affection.
Loc hehs and looks down. “I just–I can’t hang Lanny… I ain’t been in the spots you been in. I don’t think they’ll hang you.”

Lanisen looks at his hands. “I don’t want you to hang,” he answers. “Just… please… Be careful.” He glances again at Shenzi and winces. “Where’ll you go?”

Loc shrugs. “Away.”
Loc says quietly, “And I’ll be careful.”

Lanisen appears to be having difficulty breathing. He nods once, not looking at Loc.

Loc sighs again, truly looking sorry.
Loc says, “If you…. get out–try and send a note.”

Lanisen sniffs and swipes at his nose. “Right,” he says, the sarcasm in his voice drowned out by misery. “I’ll just find the nearest messenger and tell him to bring my friend a nice little note. Oh yeah, and he’s a wanted criminal, but I’ll pay you an extra twenty gold, so no problem…” His voice breaks.

Loc laughs, despite the situation. He looks away, eyes watering a little. “Tell him… he’s a friend… that does… work on the road.”

Loc says, “Travels a lot.”

A daughter of eve with gold waist-length hair (Simetra) walks in from the anteroom.

Loc looks over at the door as the woman enters.
Loc stands.

Lanisen hehs weakly. “Yeah, that’ll work.” He glances sidelong at Loc, aware of the complete improbability of such an arrangement.

Simetra enters the hostel with a somewhat stiff back and firm countenance. She looks to the green-eyed bandit. “You are Loc, I suppose.”

Lanisen stands, scattering the pieces of his game in the process. He regards Simetra with apprehension and glances nervously at Loc.

Loc’s eyes are still a bit watery. He gives a mock bow. “The one and only–Simetra.”

Simetra frowns at the bow. “You need not bow to me.” She purses her lips a bit. “I want to see the woman.”

Loc smirks, “Oh, I know I don’t need to bow to you. Miss. Your husband ain’t the lord he used to be.”
Loc says, “As for the woman, she’s resting. And has been seen.”

Simetra says, “You will speak respectfully of my husband while you re in this establishment.”

Loc says, “I am Miss. Just pointing out the obvious.” His manner is light. His eyes no longer water. “But I’ve had my fill of women who play bolder then they are. For one coming from your predicament Miss, this is AWFUL bold of you.”

Loc motions for Lanisen to lay back down. “You should rest up boy. That injury still isn’t healed.”

Simetra says, “I should think not. This is my inn and my husband’s and you are at best refugee here.”

Loc says, “And yet you don’t blanch about calling me what you know I’ve been associated with. You /just/ got free of a bandit. And now you’re marching up to me and acting as though you’re as fine a Lady like Lady Rosalind. This is your husband’s inn woman. And don’t forget it. You’re just his misses.”
Loc says, “You have a problem, get your husband to tend to it like a man should.”

Lanisen ignores Loc’s order, mostly. He does sit silently, however, and draws his knees up to his chest to watch from a relatively unobtrusive position.

Simetra straightens further, and it is then that three men reveal themselves behind her, obviously from the manor. “You may take a room upstairs. You cannot stay in our hostel here.”

Loc spits at her feet. “Get your husband woman. I’ll do what /he/ asks. I’m not taking any more orders from wenches. Specially your kind.”

Lanisen, Loc, and Colin are removed from the hostel and placed under guard in one of the upper level rooms. Shenzi is kept under guard in a separate room.


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