Oct 29, 2020 4:05 AM
elesse is the summoned hero
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She nods along.

(Seems like fairly standard social dynamics, at least. Warlords are something she knows, and if these Names have more personal power than others- that's familiar too.)

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Luka manages to get some gossip on the guards - well trained, obedient, though often as cruel as their leader - at least from descriptions of how they behave when about town.

People do trade directly with the castle, and there's a good amount of in and out.

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That could be their entrance.

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They'll be arriving soon enough. The closest stop is in the port on the edge of town; after that, the boat will keep going down river. It'll be evening; does she want to spend much time in the town itself? (Luka seems anxious.)

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They can keep moving.

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He prefers that...

The town is - decent sized, probably, for their technology level. Tiny by any metric Elesse's used to. Crowded and smelly and downtrodden, full of cautious people under the eyes of a rather disproportionate number of guards. The castle looms grandly over the shabby town, and there's a dedicated road to it from the docks that the wealthier merchants take.

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Are there any merchants on the road at the moment?

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There's some heading away from the castle; no one seems to be planning on starting business now.

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Are the guards alert and competent as well as numerous?

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Alert, certainly. Competent - possibly. They show signs of being extremely thoroughly drilled, at least, unusually so for a place apparently this far from active war zones.

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What other approaches to the castle are there?

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Not many; it's well fortified against outright attack, even if less so against sufficiently clever infiltration. There's no easily visible drain, nor a profusion of entrances and exits. The trees around the town are cleared to a good distance.  There's one heavily fortified gate in each direction, only one of which seems to be usually open.

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"Here are our options, as I see them," she says to Luka. "We can attempt to infiltrate directly, which will be dangerous and has a high chance of failure. We can wait until tomorrow and persuade a merchant convoy to allow us to join. One of us could cause a distraction while the other sneaks in. Or we could ambush a pair of guards and take their uniforms."

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He hesitates, biting his lip. "Ambushing guards seems risky, too - we won't know their routines or anything. I - don't want to wait, but I think failing would - just make more problems..."

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"Uniforms will get us up to the gate. I am fairly confident I can talk us through."

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"Would that be faster than going in with merchants?"

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"Yes, we could do that tonight."

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"I don't want to leave her longer than we have to."

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"Let us find an alley, then."

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He nods.

There's a few good ones, some even decent ambush points for assorted guards.

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Elesse waits for a pair of guards with approximately the correct heights to pass by. She lures them into the dark with an illusory noise and knocks them out quietly and efficiently.

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Luka hangs back, eyes a bit wide.

Still, he helps her get their uniforms off fairly efficiently, and arranges them into comfortable positions after.

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Then it's off to the castle.

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They're not stopped, heading towards the castle.

They are at the gate. They need to state their names, ranks, and current assignment.

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She reaches out to push the gate guard's mind. They've already given that information.

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