The streets became more crowded as the cobblestone clapped under the heels of the mercenary whose stroll down the way had been pointed to him by a bright poster back in the Market District. Around him the buildings were changing as he went, they no longer resembled the smoged workshops of artisans and guildhalls of prominant merchants but rather were vine covered residental housings for the middle class, the people crowding around him changed as well, these people did not have the attire of plump merchants or grease stained servants fetching goods for their masters but rather were of the noble class with ladies in their frilly tight dresses and the gallant gentlemen with top hats.
"Pansys," was all the Merc thought to himself as a couple beside him shyed away at the sight of a Gob-kin skull dangling from his belt whose face even in death gave a fanged grin.
Lothering rested his hand lightly on the pommel of his blade, the three purple Rapture feathers dangling from the hilt swayed easily in the breeze, his gaze was always watching for any sign of danger in the crowd around him as his teeth nudged his cigar around in his mouth. In the distance the colorful high topped tents could be seen in the Park district beyond the buildings.
"It would not be long now," thought Lothering as he proceeded down the was past an ice cream stand where two youths ate their treats.
The buildings had disappeared entirely now as the mercenary passed through cast iron gates into the park, the people around him passed with leasure to and from the circus their minds on other things as they smiled and greeted him without thought to who or what he was. Above him balloons and airships alike flew with bright ribbons attached to their sterns, on the ground and all around the path the cheery faces of acrobats and clowns swirled as they preformed about the crowd with their firebreathing and magical acts that were hardly such a things for those who have trully seen the havoc of magic. Lothering's eyes caught a group of stand off clowns jeered as they made their obnoxious faces at the scowling mercenary who growled in response.
"Bloody Clowns.. still creepy as ever," thought the mercenary as he turned his head to the path ahead, still watching the crowd with a shifting gaze.
"If it isnt Lothering the Crow, still not in his grave yet it seems," came a voice a few feet from behind the mercenary.
A stout man, a few inches shorter than Lothering, came up beside him. His coarse hair was cut short in a fashion most common amonst professional soldiers of Rathya, his body was incased within a plate of steel armor with greaves gripping to his thighs and a steel longsword swinging at his side. The man was the obivious sort you'd expect to be working for the Mekian Guard with the military build he had but the herald on his chest and color of his tunic said otherwise, as well as the two ice creams melting in his sausage fingers.
"Horris," said Lothering, nodding to him with a glance, "This isnt your normal workplace, as much an actor as you are."
"I could say the same for you, ya old rot worm," sneered Horris.
Lothering gave the man a gaze of familiarity mixed with some resentment, "I see you have new armor, work must be treating you well for once."
"Aye, that it is, after our last little excursion together in Icilee I was a bit tired of having our employers trying to kill us so I decided to settle down a bit, get me a stable job, even thinking on having some plump lass to call a wife and openin' a tavern called 'The Sellsword'."
"Not a bad thought, expecially not coming from that peanut that's your brain Horris, so what exactly do you do? Circus guard, professional clown, or icecream carrier?" said Lothering chiddingly motioning slightly to the ice cream that dripped in his hands.
Horris gave a snorted laugh, "You wish, but no, me and Joanas were hired as personal bodyguards by a prominant goods merchant here in Meka, the ice cream is for his kids, such nice little chitlins."
"Sounds wonderful, I'm envious," replied Lothering not showing any of what he said facially, "At least now you can afford to bayth more then twice a year."
"Don't remind me," grumbled the mercenary, "So what are you doin' here exactly? Seeing some extravigant lover perhaps?"
"No. You know well enough that I dont dabble in that sort of thing."
"I do quite well remember that Warrior Preistess having the hots for you during our escipade in Faelee, wasn't her name Danielle?" Horris retorted before pointing on cone out to the strange curved dagger at Lothering's side, "I do remember that being hers before she gave it to you, and you know how they are about those."
He didnt respond for a long while as they both proceeded deeper into the circus grounds heading towards the main tent which was the epicenter of the madness that was the circus, finally Horris sighed and looked down at his feet like a shamed puppy, "I'm sorry Lother.. I know it was hard for you to leave there like we did, but we had business to do, and its not like she is going anywhere expecially not with what she said when we departed."
Lothering mouthed something for a moment at the last words that Horris said before coming to solome reality and regaining composure, "Thats not the point Horris... but apology accepted, I dont expect your peabrain to know what its doing anyway," sneered Lothering but still with some hollow emotions in his eyes.
"Ah well then, come on, you can come sit with me and my boss," smiled the mercenary motioning into the main tent, "Joanas will be thrilled to see that something with a bigger head then you hasnt killed you yet."
"Lead the way then old friend and dont make enemies for along the way," sighed Lothering. He wasnt sure what it was, but something wasnt right here in Meka; everything was far too perfect and far too cheery for his instinct's liking, but with Horris and Joanas here he had something standing next to him against what exactly that troubling feeling was. It was probaly those clowns thought, damn creepy ass clowns.