Aug 10, 2022 11:10 PM
The night is always darkest...
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Otohiko is either oblivious to Alphinaud's suffering or politely ignoring it. Regardless, he faces forward and puts on his best Warrior of Light look of Strength and Confidence while facing the welcoming party.

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The welcoming party: includes what looks to be a retainer, or perhaps manservant, and a couple knights that greet Haurchefant like he's their own. He similarly remembers them by name (Abront and Edrene) and returns the greeting. Clearly the manservant means to usher them off to the noble's quarter and past all of the dirty, glaring commoners, but Haurchefant deftly avoids this trap, too.

"Veyeux, Could you escort Mistress Taru," he motions to Tataru, "to the Jeweled Crozier and make the necessary introductions to the local merchants before taking her up to meet Father? She is the Scion's coinkeeper, and I expect having a lay of the land would be quite helpful."

  "Oh? Yes, of course," says the manservant, bowing slightly.

"Edrene, your uncle is a chirurgeon tending to the injured, is he not?" continues Haurchefant. "Perhaps we could go and see him posthaste, it'd be remiss of us to let our countrymen suffer any longer than they already have. Where does he work?"

  "Oh, ah, it's not far from here," says the knight, blinking with surprise, before a coy smile dances on her lips. "I'm sure he'd be happy to accept help."

And so the party is split in two: Tataru with the manservant and one of the knights to go handle introductions and niceties, and the other knight with Haurchefant and Otohiko to go running off to help the injured. Haurchefant gives Alphinaud an out if he wants it, saying something about how he's likely to put many people at ease with how at home he looks in Ishgard (read: how he is elezen and of high birth) but doesn't perform any social maneuvering to pressure him either way.

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"I'll come with you", he tells Haurchefant immediately.

Healing people... there's a part of him saying that it's something he needs, right now, but actually that's not quite it. It's not about him at all, or what he needs. It's about doing something that's actually, undeniably, fundamentally good. There are no ifs or buts, no caveats, no long-term strategising, just doing good by his own hand.

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You won't see Otohiko complaining, here.

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Nor Haurchefant, even though he would have been absolutely delighted to have the party that contains himself and the (very attractive) Otohiko to be smaller rather than larger. But Alphinaud clearly needs this, too. The whole point of being a bastard of Fortemps is not socially maneuvering to get whatever you want, regardless of who it hurts.

They don't have very far to go in order to reach their destination. Just down, mostly. It's easy to tell that they've entered an area of the underclass, by the darkness (since Ishgard is a very vertical city) and grime and pervasive bad smell, and that's even before they get into the damage the dragon attack did. Which is... extensive. This whole area will likely need to be rebuilt.

There are many injured who could use healing, and almost all of them stare at Otohiko and Alphinaud with open disgust, disdain, or outright hostility.

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When he was just a novice adventurer people were less hostile than this. What a weird feeling.

No matter. The grimoire he carries with him everywhere is soon in hand and a short burst of magic into the right arcane diagram creates an aetherial construct in the form of a green fairy about the size of his handspan.

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Alphinaud's own helper construct is a land-bound quadruped, something like a cross between a hare and a fox, blue with a red gem on its forehead.

He almost instinctively spots the person in charge and walks up to them. "My friend and I are healers," he says without preamble. "He can cast an ambient effect of enhanced regeneration, with your permission. And we would be thankful if you could point us at where we could be most useful."

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The person in charge turns out to be the uncle of the knight escorting them. He chews his lip and looks torn.

"We could certainly use the aid, and Halone knows we're grateful for the offer, but..." he glances at the distrustful underclass. "Lad, I'm not sure you'll have many volunteers. Not without more backing reassuring that it's not heresy, or at least someone that these people trust. I'm only barely more credible than you, and if I lose too much then half of these people will leave and lick their own wounds in private."

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"Oh thank the Fury I was gettin' real sick of being infirm," says a familiar voice, looking a little worse for wear. He's sporting a couple bandages and the warmest smile they've had since they've entered the lower level. "Welcome to Ishgard, sorry for the mess, I would absolutely love to be your demonstrative test case for healing to prove that it won't turn me into dragonspawn or something."

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- Otohiko raises a hand up to self-consciously touch one of his horns. "They're worried about that...?"

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Cynric winces.

"... People actually do. Turn into literal dragons sometimes. So. Uh. Yeah. Sorry, mate."

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His tail, already not particularly animated, goes very still. "But I'm not -"

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An armoured dragoon appears out of nowhere! Well. The sky. She appears out of the sky. Still!

"Not a dragon, yes," Jacqueline agrees, lifting up the visor of her helmet. "Hey, Cynric, hey, Edrene." She looks past them at a woman looking injured on a cot. "Hey Noelle! How's little Mathi doing? He get out safe?"

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(The noise that comes out of Alphinaud at her sudden appearance is not a squeak. He's much too dignified for that.)

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Honestly, Cynric is used to this now.

"Hey, Jacque. Good, you're here, that'll be the other half of lookin' trustworthy. Uh, third, I guess?" He looks at Haurchefant, a little dubiously.

(Little Mathi is doing okay, he made it out just fine. He's even got it into his head to help the chirurgeons, even though he's far too young to do much besides 'fetch water.')

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"You know, Otohiko, I thought this would have been harder. The Azure Dragoon herself and, uh, a levelheaded well-known spokesperson of the people? Marvelous!"

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Cynric snorts and looks bemused with this characterization.

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"I saw the commotion and made a wild guess," Jacqueline says with some amusement before turning to Otohiko and Alphinaud. "Welcome to Ishgard, please don't let the stuffy lords up there," and she vaguely points in the direction of The Pillars, "sour your impression of us too much, I promise we have some good people," and at that she nods in the direction of the Ishgardians around. "Now, since it seems like you want to cement your image of insufferable do-gooders as your first public act in this city, how can a humble dragoon help?"

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Wow this woman is... a lot.

"I... think you're fine? I guess if, if there's still anyone who doesn't trust that I'm not -" And he touches one of his horns self-consciously again.

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Alphinaud shakes his head (and tries to regain some composure) before turning to Cynric. "Any nonobvious injuries?" he asks as he quickly flips through his book to find a specific diagram and then send a pulse of aether into it. The aether gets shaped and filtered through his carbuncle construct, who does a little backflip as it sends Cynric a waft of concentrated healing. Not just generic healing, though; Alphinaud tailored the spell to target Cynric's most visible injuries specifically, to kick up his immune system by a hundred right around wherever he could conceivably get an infection and accelerate his regeneration by who even knows how much. Also a painkilling effect to top it off. "I am afraid that when the injuries are this old it takes longer for them to fully heal."

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