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1[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty [GV] Casting the First Stone on Sat Aug 25, 2018 9:28 am



[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty
Cassius Sinclair
The Kraken
[GV] Casting the First Stone D5da255ae42b2fbe08f85ac5f848e11c

Cassius sat uncomfortably in the fine, silk padded chair. He was hunched over a white linen draped table eyeing numerous mermen and women milling about the fine dining restaurant Crowley had told him to meet in. This wasn't the venue Cassius had been expecting and as such when he entered was almost immediately turned away until he name dropped the bastard emissary of the Royal Palace. From there Cassius himself was treated practically like royalty himself, though he could tell the waiters did so begrudgingly.

He was escorted to this fine table in the middle of the dining area, set for two with more dining utensils, plates and bowls than he thought any one person could possibly need for a meal. It had been twenty minutes since he had been shown to his table and offered a menu, though he ordered nothing. He wasn't hungry, nor did he want this meeting to go on any longer than absolutely necessary.

Picking up one of the numerous spoons, Cassius eyed it suspiciously, twirling it between his large fingers. It was tiny, with a serrated edge on it like small fish teeth and he wondered aloud, grumbling to himself,
What in the five seas would someone do with this contraption?

It's a grapefruit spoon my uncultured friend, do try not to poke your eye out with it. They're surprisingly better at that task than the one they were intended. Ironic, no? Came a deep, yet flowery voice, filled with prim and proper notes as Crowley floated up from behind Cassius, leisurely reclining into the seat across from the fishman.

[GV] Casting the First Stone Core%24images%24portraits%24merfolk%24transparent%24hunter

Cassius put the spoon back where he had gotten it, somewhat embarrassed but more so just pissed off Crowley had kept him waiting so long.
You're late.
Am I? Ah yes, silly me. You know how those royals are, time means nothing to them. So sorry old sport, please tell me you ordered something, yes? I've ravished myself.
Not hungry, let's get this over with.
My, my, all work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy, Cassius. Crowley mused until he saw the expression on Cassius's face.

The merman stroked his long, perfectly groomed beard down to a point as he eyed Cassius, sizing up the situation,
Right then, very well. I'm sure you're a busy man, cleaning up our streets and what not.
Crowley reached down to the bag he had brought and tossed a manilla envelope onto the table. Cassius grabbed it and popped the top, pulling out a picture of the Watashi Triplets sitting in what looked like a prison cell, chained to the walls.

Just thought you might want that as a little trophy of a job well done. The other one in the folder however, Crowley said as Cassius pulled out a picture of his only real friend in the world and mentor, Doc, sitting in a similar jail cell. However, he wasn't chained and his accommodations were slightly comfier after Cassius had demanded them to be made so.
This is a reminder of the need to keep doing the work you've been doing. Three down, two to go Cassius, you're more than halfway there and the streets are already looking a little cleaner.

Cassius crumpled the photo in his hand, tossing it on the table towards Crowley and said nothing. Crowley smiled before shifting around in his bag once more for another envelope.
Right then, one more thing I thought you should be made aware of. Truth be told I shouldn't be showing this to you, but, Crowley pursed his lips in thought, cocking his head to the side a bit as he stared at Cassius,
honestly you're the only person I know not too full of himself or egotistical to even care about such a thing as what I'm going to show you.

Crowley cracked open the envelope and slid another photograph towards Cassius. Cassius lifted it, staring at what appeared to be a tank of some sort, though somehow more intimidating than that of a regular tank's appearance.
You bought a tank? Cassius asked, far from amused.
Tanks, plural my friend. I have been the frontman in securing a deal with the World Government. In exchange for the Royal Palace capturing and turning in anyone attempting to use Fishman Island as a gateway into the New World, the World Government has agreed to give us access to their top of the line security equipment. The tanks are just the first wave of the deal and boy are they real beauties. Made to be both aquatic and land vehicles, they have the firepower of a fully equipped caravel. Steel shelling to protect the driver from just about very type of bullet in the world and my personal favorite, touch ID so that these bad boys can't be driven by anyone not logged in its system. Some crook tries to take this thing for a joy ride or terrorists target them to add to their arsenal, no dice my friend. Only way to add yourself is through the mainframe computer in the center of the palace and good luck with that one.

Cassius simply stared at the photo before sliding it back to Crowley,
Seems a bit over the top if you ask me.
Well I wasn't asking you Cassius, I was showing you and you were expected to nod and listen like a good little boy.

Cassius's fists tightened, but he maintained his composure,
Seems you wouldn't need these death machines if your Royal Guards just did their jobs. Had some of the Watashi Triplets' angry customers show up at a bar the other night. Some of your Royal Guards were just down the street, saw the whole thing before moving on like nothing even happened, didn't say a word. Protectors of the island my scaly ass.

Crowley smiled, folding his hands in front of himself on the table,
Hmm yes, you'll have to excuse them. Royal Guards are instructed from a young age not to dirty themselves by getting involved in...lesser citizens' matters.
Lesser citizens? The people of Galloon Town keep this island running. They ARE the economy of Fishman Island, while your bosses in the shiny palace wipe their asses with the peoples' hard work. The least they could do is expend some manpower to keep the majority of your island safe at night.

Perhaps, Crowley said with a smug shrug, but it's also good for people to learn how to defend themselves sometimes. Makes them stronger, less dependent.

Cassius leaned back in his chair, crossing his arms in front of his chest, anger coursing through his very being. He knew he couldn't take down Crowley, not only due to the setting but in general. The smug merman who was currently his acting handler was far more capable than his priss boy attitude let on. It wasn't the time, but something Crowley had said generated an idea in Cassius and it was something he planned to take and run with,
Hmm, defend themselves, huh? I'll remember that. Are we done here?

Crowley simply smiled and raised a hand, flourishing it towards the door. Cassius stood and made his way towards the exit,
Oh Cassius, you almost forgot something.
The large fishman turned as Cassius tossed the crumpled up picture of Doc incarcerated towards him. Cassius simply let it bump against his chest and fall to the floor at his feet. He stared at Crowley, the smug smirk on the merman's face, pure murder in Cassius's own eyes. There was a cool, long minute as the two stared at each other, Crowley daring Cassius to test him before the fishman simply turned and exited the building.

WORDS: 1283
NOTES: ###
DORIKI: +5 S&P & +5 S&A (In water);+5 E&D (Pugilist); +5 S&P
GEAR: ###

2[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty Re: [GV] Casting the First Stone on Fri Sep 07, 2018 6:54 pm



[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty
Cassius Sinclair
The Kraken
[GV] Casting the First Stone D5da255ae42b2fbe08f85ac5f848e11c
Cassius strolled through the streets of Galloon Town, people were actually out and about, mingling and enjoying their day. It was a happy and noticeable change since he had arrived back on Fishman Island. While the Watashi Triplets hadn't been the most dangerous criminals, their very presence brought out the riff raff, thus forcing the common folk to shut themselves in and away from the dangers of the streets. It was still far from ideal however, people rarely ventured out at night. A small power vacuum had developed in the absence of the Watashi Triplets' black market business. Various criminals vying to corner different areas of the market and take over the cash flow of Fishman Island's underworld had made for some bloody encounters. It was mostly gang on gang action as each tried to establish themselves in the new, opened turf, but as always, civilians managed to find themselves caught in the crossfire.

In fact, as he rounded the corner towards his destination, he passed a memorial site for two teenagers who had been wrongly identified as members of another gang. Their bodies had been so riddled with bullets, their own mother hadn't been able to tell them apart. Cassius looked away from the memorial in disgust. These fools had no idea the true dangers they faced outside Fishman Island. They were killing each other needlessly and stupidly for what? Nothing. Meanwhile humans harvested, bound, and sold them to the highest bidder up above in the upper world. They were enslaved, beaten, murdered by others and these fools were too stupid and arrogant to see the true enemy, caught up in their own game of cat and mouse.

Finding his way to the Watashi Triplets' old warehouse, the place he had ended up defeating and detaining them in, Cassius ripped away the caution tape the Royal Authority had reinstalled since the last time he ripped it away. He pushed open the door and closed it behind him, flicking on the harsh overhead lights as he did so. Inside, the warehouse was barren, the large metal shelves emptied after the Royal Authority had come in and "commandeered the black market goods as evidence in the trial against the Watashi Triplets".

Any fishman with half a brain knew there'd be no trial and it didn't take a genius to know the vast majority of that contraband, or evidence as the Royal Authority insisted on referring to it as, would end up on some black market in Baltigo, the profits going into the pockets of the Royal Family and their lackeys. The Royal Family were no better than any of these bloodthirsty, arrogant criminals, they were just better at disguising it.  

Cassius had been crashing in the warehouse since the Royal Authority had cleaned it out. He didn't have anywhere else to stay and he found that just his very presence here seemed to ward off any gang from looking at taking the space for their own. He hadn't had any trouble yet, but knew it was most likely only a matter of time before one of the arrogant SOBs balled up and decided to come looking for a fight. So, when Cassius heard the scraping of a wooden crate as he made his way towards the back stairs that would take him up to the office that oversaw the entirety of his warehouse, aka his bedroom, his nerves immediately dialed to 11.

Without even thinking, simply reacting, Cassius found himself hurling a bullet of compressed water at the empty crate against the wall. The impact caused the old, rickety crate to shatter and splinter, displaying for him a young fishwoman confused and scared by his sudden attack. The two fishpeople stared at each other, neither moving, trying to size up the situation and what the other was thinking.

[GV] Casting the First Stone Latest?cb=20130412034241

Well, out with it then. Cassius demanded, already in a fighting stance and ready for whatever surprises this saucy wench might let loose on him.
Out with what? The fishwoman asked, clearly confused.
Asks the vermin trespassing in my home.
This is a warehouse, not YOUR house.
So, who sent you then? Which gang hired you? Who took a hit out on me? I need to know where to deliver the body bag.

The fishwoman stared at Cassius for a long minute, he could actually see the gears turning in her brain as she tried to piece together the situation. She held up her hands in defense as realization finally materialized behind those soft green eyes,
Wait, what? No, no, no no. I'm not here to kill you. Wait, you're Cassius right? Well, actually that doesn't matter who you are, I'm not here to kill anyone. I'm looking for the squid faced fishman who imprisoned the Watashi Triplets and well...
Well? Cassius asked, but could feel her gaze on his beard tendrils.
Look, I'm not here to kill you, She said, standing for the first time, My name is Raina and I came here, looking for you, to ask you...well, to ask you to train me.

Train you? Cassius's face softened in surprise before he grunted, If you came here looking for me, why did you hide from me when I entered.
Oh um well, hehe yeah that's the thing... She trailed off, looking down at her feet and pushing her two pointer fingers together as she spoke into her chest through embarrassment, I had this big grand idea to knock on your door and demand that you train me so I can protect myself and my community from these gangs. I wasn't going to leave until you agreed to train me no matter how long it took. But when I knocked on the door it just sort of ah, opened and you know, I just maybe kind of walked in. Then I started getting a little freaked out and wondering what would happen if you really did say no or you didn't like me or, or, I mean I don't know. Then I heard you come in and I just panicked and so I hid in the only thing really left in this place and we are.

Cassius stared at the young woman, studying her, trying to figure out if this was a ruse or she really was this sheepish,
You're either the world's greatest assassin and have completely duped me into believing that ridiculous story, or you're the world's most pathetic student.
Wait, student? So then-
But you said-
Figure of speech. Cassius said, turning away from the woman and marching towards his stairs.

Leave, I suggest before it gets dark.
No. Raina said, stomping her foot down. The resounding tone echoing on the empty walls of the warehouse. Cassius paused at the stairs, his hand resting on the railing. He turned his head over his shoulder,
No. I'm not leaving. He could hear the nerves in her voice, but she carried on with determination. I-I told you I came here to demand, to DEMAND that you train me. That you teach me how to fight the way you do, the way you did, the way...the way that you can. It's not just me either, there's a whole group of us who are sick and tired of seeing the way our families are treated, of living in fear beneath these criminals and slum lords. We're sick of watching the Royal Authority turn their backs on us and we, we want to do something about it. You can help us do something about it. Please train us. No, train us. She concluded, making up her mind decisively.

Cassius looked up at the top of the stairs where his makeshift bed lay waiting for him. It had been a long day, Crowley had gotten under his skin with his belittlement of Galloon Town. The memorial he passed was fresh, the first time he had seen it since the event. Now here was this fishwoman demanding change, begging for his help because for so long there had been nothing and no one. Cassius rubbed his eyes with one hand. He wasn't a savior and he certainly wasn't a babysitter, but the girl presented herself with the same conviction he had presented Doc with all those years ago. She demanded strength not for power or glory, but to protect those she cared about.

With a heavy sigh, Cassius said, Fine, be back here in three days and bring whatever rag tag band of friends you were blabbering about. I'll need some time to get this place cleaned up.
A small whisper of wind escaped the girl's lips as she finally let out the breath she had been holding since speaking her piece.
Wha- I, yes, okay, sure, of course sensei. Thank you sensei, senpai? No, definitely sense. She stammered, clearly frazzled by the sudden turn of events.

One more thing, cut the sensei bullshit, I'm no one's sensei. Now get out of my house. Cassius said before turning back to the stairs and making his way slowly up them to the office above. He could hear Raina behind him begin running for the door and for the briefest of moments he smiled at the thought of the excitement that propelled her out of his makeshift home and into the streets of Galloon Town.
WORDS: 1557
NOTES: ###
DORIKI: +5 S&P & +5 S&A (In water);+5 E&D (Pugilist)
GEAR: ###

3[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty Re: [GV] Casting the First Stone on Sat Sep 08, 2018 5:46 am



[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty
Cassius Sinclair
The Kraken
[GV] Casting the First Stone D5da255ae42b2fbe08f85ac5f848e11c

Cassius sat at a chair in the middle of the room with his arms folded, his head down and his eyes closed. While it appeared he was sleeping, he was actually in deep, deep thought...and only slightly snoozing. He considered what today hold, wondering if the young woman would even show up or if she had chickened out and he had spent the last few days remodeling and organizing this warehouse into a fighting dojo for no reason. It wasn't exactly perfect, but he had broken down many of the metal shelves, managed to find some secondhand boxing bags and equipment from a generous storeowner who was thankful for his part in removing the Watashi Triplets, and secured some mats. Cassius himself hadn't used mats to train on, when he was thrown to the ground by Doc way back when, it was on stone, but most dojos had mats of some kind, so he figured he needed them just to look right.

A knock rapped across the door, disturbing him from his thoughts and he picked his head up. He stared at the door for a long moment before another knock came and he decided to stand. Stepping over to the door, he opened it to find Raina standing in the entranceway with a wide smile across her face. Behind her some odd 20 or so fishmen and women stood grinning. They were of all different species, sizes, genders and ages. Some as old as Doc, if not even older, and some looked even younger than Raina.
You said there was a group of you, of some friends or something.
Yeah, this is the group. Raina responded, gesturing to the gathered people behind her.
This isn't a group, this is...this is a small army, a mob.

Raina considered this for a moment, turning and looking across the small sea of faces that had gathered behind her on the sidewalk. She then turned back to Cassius,
Yeah well...we're here now so are you going to let us in?
Cassius frowned, stared at the faces staring back at him and sighed,
Very well, but tell them to take of their shoes when they come in.
Cassius then turned and left the front door, walking back into the warehouse turned dojo. He felt something, something he hadn't felt in a long time. Cassius was...anxious. He wasn't used to this sort of attention from others. He was usually either ignored completely or treated like garbage, no one had ever looked to him for guidance or training. Cassius felt an obligation to not disappoint these people, but he also didn't know what he was doing. He was expecting maybe five others including Raina, twenty or so more though, that was an entirely different beast.

When they all had gathered in the main section of the warehouse, Cassius cleared his throat,
Good morning, I am Cassius Sinclair. I don't really care what your names are, I'll learn them or give you new ones as we train here. This place is for training, for learning, not for babysitting, coddling or therapy. He stared out across the group, expecting some to leave due to his harsh tone, but instead they simply stared up at him, sitting cross legged on the mats. He scowled, a bit perturbed that no one had left,
I will put you through grueling, sometimes excruciatingly painful training but by the end of your time here you will have the necessary tools to properly defend yourself and those you hold dear.
Someone in the back clapped, but quickly died down when he realized no one else had joined him.
There will be days you hate me, I don't care. You are always free to leave and never come back. None of us are here to make friends, we're here to train. We're here because we've all recognized a problem in our community that we want to fix. This is not for fun, this is not pleasure, this is work. So long as you remember that, we'll all get along just fine.
Cassius paused, once again staring across his gathered pupils.
Very well, let's begin.

Cue Training Montage

For the next two months, they gathered daily, sometimes for only a couple of hours, other times for the entirety of the day from sun up to sun down. Cassius pushed them harder than he thought they could handle and some dropped out, but it seemed for all those that dropped out, more and more caught word of what Cassius was doing and joined. Every other day Cassius found a new face in his dojo/warehouse, until eventually he counted his pupils at nearing fifty. In place of payment, people brought groceries, old furniture, items to make the office space above the warehouse feel homier for Cassius. At first he grunted with displeasure as they walked armfuls of groceries up the stairs, and carried an old, remodeled fridge and bedframe up. However, after the first night of a full stomach on a new, soft bed instead of the hard floor, he decided to stop giving them hell for their generosity.

While Cassius had no intention of teaching them the full breadth of Fishman Karate, which would take them years to fully comprehend and master, he taught them the basics of fighting. He gave them a foundation to work with and allowed them to branch out and discover what worked for them individually. Different shapes and sizes of people learned how to fight, for example Raina was small and quick, she learned to deliver fast, precise strikes while a man named Gorilla Joe (who Cassius was fairly positive had never actually seen a Gorilla before in his life) was a hulking, massive whale shark fishman who used his immense size to deliver devastating full body attacks. Once they had the basics down and learned how to actually throw a punch, kick with the full weight of their body and at least mildly read body language, Cassius allowed them freedom to develop themselves.

It was a good system and for the most part it worked. As new people would join he separated the warehouse into groupings. The first grouping usually composed of the oldest members were the advanced ones, those who were allowed to spar and develop their own way of fighting. The middle grouping was usually an inbetween class, still mastering the basics but could more or less hold their own. The final grouping was for the newbies, those just starting out who could barely even throw a punch. Teaching brought Cassius a joy and amusement he could have never imagined, though he never admitted it outright to his students.

WORDS: 1115
NOTES: ###
DORIKI: +5 S&P & +5 S&A (In water);+5 E&D (Pugilist)
GEAR: ###

4[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty Re: [GV] Casting the First Stone on Sat Sep 08, 2018 6:30 am



[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty
Cassius Sinclair
The Kraken
[GV] Casting the First Stone D5da255ae42b2fbe08f85ac5f848e11c

Shhh, quiet now. Cassius said, raising a webbed finger to his lips and looking back at the five faces following him in the dark. They were moving quickly and quietly around the back of what Cassius was certain was a dope manufacturing house. He had taken them on raids like this over the last few weeks as a sort of field test to see what they had learned. The students had loved them because it meant they could actually put their skills in action and begin cleaning up their streets.

He began signaling with his hands silently, motioning to two windows on the side of the house that had been boarded up. Raina nodded and took two of the students down that side of the house while two more moved down the opposite side to another boarded up window. Meanwhile Cassius and one other went around back to the door.

Cassius nodded to the door and his pupil stepped up, leaned against the siding of the house, reached out and rapped his knuckles across the old wood. For a moment there was nothing, silence in the night air before he could hear commotion and whispered hissing of the drug mules moving about in the worn down house. Cassius readied himself just outside the door and as it opened, he could see the nose of a shotgun poke out the crack between the door and the frame. On reflex he unleashed a shockwave of watervapor through the air at the door with enough force to buckle and splinter the door, ripping it from its hinges and sending whoever was on the other side flying backwards into the house.

Using this as the signal, the other students and Raina began breaching the house through the windows, using their new found abilities to easily break through the boarded up windows and enter the house. Cassius sprinted in, kicking the shotgun away from the hands of the dazed thug as his pupil followed, delivering a decisive blow to knock the thug unconscious. Cassius entered the main living area, which had been converted into a lab of some sort just as the other thugs began drawing their weapons. One came at him with a long knife, more a short sword than anything really.

He dodged and dipped, but misjudged the entranceway and bumped his shoulder against the frame. This allowed the drugged out thug to manage a glancing slice across Cassius's bicep, which was quickly met with a grunt of pain and a devastating uppercut from the fishman. The thug was knocked off his feet and into the air before crumpling to the ground.

Shots rang out in the house and Cassius could feel the fear for his students building in the pit of his stomach. Other raids had ended in weapons being drawn, shots fired and even one of his pupils getting shot just the other week. It had been through and through, a clean shot through the arm that he'd eventually make a full recovery from, but the anguish had been all the same.

Suddenly, above him there was a loud rumble before the ceiling cracked and split. Cassius quickly jumped away from the area as the ceiling gave way and a body crashed through the ceiling and to the floor. The thug made a guttural groan before lying very, very still. He looked up to see one of his pupils standing over the large hole, looking down at the body. He noticed Cassius and gave a smile and quick wave before disappearing from the opening and jumping back into the fray.

Only about five minutes later and the explosive chaos that had erupted was over. Drug thugs lay unconscious or dead, dope equipment was shattered, broken beyond repair and all in all Cassius believed it had been a total mission accomplished.
Well done everyone, who's hurt?
Couple of scrapes with some knives, a grazed bullet on the thigh for Regi, nothing major. You're one to talk though. Raina said, nodding towards Cassius's blood soaked arm.

Thanks to the adrenaline he had completely forgotten about the cut, but now as his body calmed down and the danger was over, the slow steady sting of the wound stretched across the entirety of his arm. It throbbed angrily and he knew he needed to get it washed and bandaged.
I'm fine, I'll fix it up back at the dojo. Regi, he's fine? Can he walk?
Yeah Cass, I'm good. Hurts a bit but I'm already done bleeding. I can make it out of here no problem. Regi spoke up from his position on the living room's couch, apparently the only piece of furniture the thugs had kept.

Alright, good to hear, let's head out then. Nothing left for us here, well done everyone. Cassius said as they departed the house and made their way back to the dojo.

Cassius oversaw everyone get cleaned up, minor scrapes and cuts dressed and mended. Once everyone was fixed up, they were sent on their way, back home and to their families for a well earned night's rest.
You're not going to be able to wrap that on your own, not where it is on your arm. Raina said as she packed her bag and prepared to leave. White ceiling particles stained her face from where the plume of dust had touched her. She looked dirty and tired, yet somehow beautiful. Cassius shook his head, clearing his mind of such thoughts,
I'll manage, goodnight. He said, turning and walking up the stairs to his office/make-shift living quarters.

A few minutes later he sat at his desk, angrily trying to wrap the cut on his arm. The soap had stung when he washed it, his body ached and he was exhausted. He wanted nothing more than to go to bed, but knew he had to dress his wound first and foremost. Slamming his fist on the desk in frustration as once again the gauze fell from his shoulder, he jumped as a voice came from behind him,
I told you.

He turned to find Raina standing in the doorway, watching him struggle.
I didn't even hear you come in.
You left the door open. long have you been standing there?
Long enough to know that I was right and you were wrong.

Cassius scowled but said nothing as she crossed the room and bent down to dress his wound. He waited patiently as she placed a cotton swab across the open skin before gingerly wrapping his arm in gauze and tying it off. It was hard to believe these delicate hands that moved with grace and precision were the same ones that hours earlier had punched a man in the kidneys so hard he had pissed blood right then and there on the floor.

As she finished, Raina looked up at Cassius and the fishman realized he had been staring. They locked eyes for a long minute, staring at each other in silence. It was probably no longer than a handful of seconds but neither moved, the only sound filling the room was their steady breathing.

Right, well, thank you. Cassius huffed, pulling his arm gently from Raina's hands. She smiled, but her eyes frowned with dismay,
Of course. It's getting late, I'll see you tomorrow.
Yes, get home safely. Cassius said as Raina turned and walked towards the door.
Open or closed? She asked.
Closed. Cassius said before watching her disappear behind the door.

Scene Change: Slums

What do you mean they took out another of our manufacturing houses? An angry fishman demanded, slamming his fists on the table in front of him.
We-w-well sir, you see they just-
I mean who even are these freaks? Some vigilante losers running around making my life a living hell? Do they think it's cool or fun to play cops? How does this even keep happening? We armed those idiots with some of our best weapons after last week's raid.

John "Jack" Silvergill was none too pleased with his recent business disruptions. He paced the room angrily, throwing a glass of wine against the wall in frustration. Though Cassius and his new students didn't know it, they were costing Silvergill tens of millions of Beli, bleeding the man more and more with each raid. He wanted to put an end to Cassius and his rag tag team of vigilantes, but it seemed nothing he did was working.

Have we even figured out where these fuckers are based out of? Can't we just send a hit squad in and clean them up.
I'm afraid not sir, they always come in the night and leave without any witnesses. Our men are either killed or unconscious after these night time raids.
Hell's bells this is ridiculous, they're making a mockery of us, of me. Silvergill said, running a webbed hand through his greasy, slick backed hair.

Excuse me gentlemen, but I may be able to offer some assistance with your little pest problem. A voice came from the entrance to the room.
Who the hell are you? How did you even get in here? We have guards posted outside.
Had. The man muttered as he stepped out of the shadows and properly into the room with Silvergill and his assistant.
What'd you say?

I said, I may be able to offer some assistance with your little pest problem. It seems we have similar problems that need...eradicating. Crowley said with a sinister grin.

WORDS: 1589
NOTES: ###
DORIKI: +5 S&P & +5 S&A (In water);+5 E&D (Pugilist)
GEAR: ###

5[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty Re: [GV] Casting the First Stone on Sun Sep 09, 2018 7:16 am



[GV] Casting the First Stone Empty
Cassius Sinclair
The Kraken
[GV] Casting the First Stone D5da255ae42b2fbe08f85ac5f848e11c

Cassius paced about the office, his pupils were training hard today, focused and hungry for another raid. He looked down from the windows of the office, watching them train and spar, eager to be selected for the next clean up job. The streets of Galloon Town were becoming safer by the day, their acts were having a serious impact on the people of Fishman Island. With each successful raid, his students became more and more motivated. Word of their accomplishments spread throughout town and everyday new fishmen and women were lining up requesting to join.

He turned away from the windows and back to the table, where Raina and three of his most trusted students sat studying a map of Fishman Island. One of them, Regi, spoke up as he tapped a marker on the desk in thought,
It seems like these gangs are at least moving out of Galloon Town, becoming more populated in the slums. So as far as that's concerned, I'd say mission accomplished.
Yes, but it's not enough to just MOVE the problem to a different district. We need to completely rid the island of this crime problem. Which means more raids in more dangerous, higher enemy populated areas.
Shouldn't be much of a problem considering how many new members we keep getting every day. The line is out the door somedays when I open up. Regi said with an amused snort.

Cassius pulled at the tendrils of his beard, deep in thought.
Raina is right, it's not enough to just be content with cleaning up the streets of Galloon Town. If the Abyss Slums are where this infection is festering, then we need to hit at the source.
The others all nodded in silent agreement, staring at the map, particularly the slum district. Cassius walked up to the table, placing his hands on it as support and stared down.
Still, he said, picking his head up and looking at each of them, what we've accomplished, what YOU'VE all accomplished, is something to be celebrated. So we shall, tonight we'll have a celebration for everyone. Even those of us who haven't been on raids have worked hard these past few months and I have no doubt will continue to do so. The others smiled and cheered in acceptance, and even the cold hearted fishman felt a smile touch his lips.

What in the seven hells? Is that smoke? Raina asked, suddenly standing up and looking out through the office windows. Cassius turned immediately and indeed white smoke was rising from the training dojo below. He moved to the windows, looking down the entire area was blanketed in thick white smoke. Shots rang out, the upper windows of the warehouse began to shatter. Without hesitating, Cassius moved from the windows and down the stairs into the smoke below.

It was so thick he couldn't see his hand in front of his face, but he had walked these floors hundreds, if not thousands of times. He knew the layout like the back of his hand, better even as he made his way towards the front entrance. His pupils remained calm, but they were clearly frightened and confused. They bumped against him, trying to find their way in the smoke and delirium. He tossed them off carefully, his foot striking something metal. Reaching down he picked up what felt like a small smoke grenade. More shots rang out, penetrating the outside of the building as his pupils screamed, some had clearly been hit, others simply allowing the confusion and terror to get to them. Crushing the canister in his hand, Cassius moved even faster towards the door.

The broken windows at the top of the warehouse were now leaking the smoke, allowing it to escape and lifting the darkness. It was now more of a thick haze, shadows and shapes could be seen if one looked carefully. This wasn't some random attack of retaliation, this was a well planned execution. They had confused and disoriented Cassius's people, then, like trapped fish in a barrel, began gunning them down. If he could just get outside, he could at least see what they were up against and start retaliating. Finding the door handle he pulled, opening door and allowing fresh air to woosh in. The smoke quickly began exiting through the open door, pullout out into the outside air. However, as Cassius stared through the escaping smoke, he could make out a figure across the street on one knee holding something on his shoulder. There was a small explosion, a spark of flame as Cassius suddenly realized what was going on and hit the deck.

The rocket wizzed by him, screaming through the air and going right through the window of his office above the warehouse floor. It exploded, deafening those still trapped in the warehouse and creating a large fireball. Broken glass and metal rained down on the warehouse floor, causing the students to run in circles in panic. By now the smoke had diluted to a thin fog, Cassius was able to make out faces of his poor pupils, terrified. He jumped to his feet and screamed,
No! As he realized Raina and the others had been in the office only moments before.

Immediately he began running back towards the stairs, towards the inferno above him. Just a few steps away, someone grabbed his arm,
Cassius wait! It's okay, we're all down here. As soon as you ran down we followed to help calm the others. It's bad, some of them have been shot...a few... She trailed off, unable to finish her sentence but Cassius saw the blood on her hands and already knew.

Hello Cassius Sinclair and friends. I am Jack Silvergill and you all have been a thorn in my side long enough, welcome to your day of reckoning. A voice boomed from the front entrance as Cassius turned to see a fishman standing just beyond the door. As he finished his announcement, gang thugs rushed in behind him, armed with military grade swords and guns. They took no time attacking the first of Cassius's still confused pupils, cutting them down in a flash.

We're under attack! Use what you've learned, this is what we've been training for. Do not let this be your last day, fight for your life! Cassius declared as he ran straight towards the fray. He jumped over a large cluster of people and dropped onto one of the thugs, feeling his ribs snap beneath his weight. Another one turned as he saw Cassius join in and pointed his rifle at the fishman, but Cassius was faster and launched a small shockwave towards the thug, throwing him against the far back wall. His students watched him attack and quickly became motivated and invigorated. The tides quickly turned from an execution to a true battle.

Cassius locked eyes with Silvergill who at first looked a bit nervous, uncertain, before smiling and pulling out a sword of his own.
Well then, let's have at it. You've killed enough of my men and disrupted my business, it's time to finish this mono y mono. Silvergill said, goading Cassius into attack.
I don't know who you are, but thank you for telling me your name so I know what to have them put on the headstone. Cassius said before running straight at Silvergill.

The street lord swung his sword horizontally, but Cassius ducked under it and brought a devastating punch into Silvergill's stomach. The man coughed and wheezed but was not down for the count as he delivered a hard elbow to the back of Cassius's neck. Cassius dropped to one knee, wincing in pain but bracing himself from falling.
Die! Silvergill declared as he brought the point of the sword down towards Cassius's back.
Cassius swiped at the man's knees, knocking him off balance and to the floor. Silvergill fell hard, hard enough to let go of the sword in sudden surprise. Cassius kicked the sword away before descending on him with a flurry of angry blows.
How dare you come into my dojo, into my home and attack my people? The people that are merely trying to clean up the streets from scum like you. They are doing the right thing, protecting, serving, the jobs that these pathetic royal guards refuse to do. You dare stand in the way of that, you dare punish that just to make a quick buck? You. Are. Scum. Cassius said with a final blow to the man's throat, listening to him choke and gasp for breath. Cassius rose from Silvergill and walked off into the fray, spitting near the man's head in disgust as he did so.

As he gazed upon the battle he smiled for the briefest of moments. It had been dark at first, his people surely losing as they succumbed to their panic, but rallying they fought hard. Some lay broken and bleeding, but he noticed far more thugs in that state than his own people. It was far from over, but it was clear they were making the winning push. He went to join in and assist in any way he could when a sudden, shrieking whistle pierced the air. For the briefest of moments, everyone in the fight paused, confusion on the faces of Cassius's people, and what looked like dread on the faces of Silvergill's. Cassius turned around to see Silvergill, beaten and bleeding, propped up on a single elbow and staring at Cassius with complete hatred in his eyes. In his mouth sat a long, thin, silver whistle.

What is that, your rape whistle? Cassius asked as one of the side walls suddenly exploded. Cassius raised his hands in reflex, blocking out the bright light of the ensuing fireball and shards of flying debris from the warehouse wall. The explosion had engulfed some of his people, but Silvergill's had been victim to it as well. Clearly this was not a man who cared for the well being of his own. As the smoke and dust settled, the shape of a military grade tank rolled through the new hole in the warehouse wall.

No. Cassius said in horror, his face paling and his hands quivering. It couldn't be, he had seen this before, he had been shown pictures of this exact model of tank by Crowley.
Where? Where did you get this?! Cassius demanded, turning to Silvergill who only smiled and chuckled before laying back down,
It seems your friends in high places aren't as friendly as you thought Sinclair.

Cassius turned back to the tank as it swiveled around, it was preparing another barrage of fire, literally like shooting fish in a barrel...with a rocket launcher. He had to do something, and quickly, but he felt frozen in place. His brain was still trying to work out just what was happening, why Crowley had supplied these lowlifes with a military grade tank. It was beginning to make sense now, truth be told. The assault had been methodical, well planned and surgical in precision. This wasn't some turf war attack, but the thugs still fought like thugs. They had been given a plan but not trained like soldiers. This whole thing had been put together very recently and for what? To wipe Cassius off the map? To spread more fear through Galloon Town during a time of budding hope?

Then he saw why the tank was swiveling rather than firing, it was taking aim at something specific. Raina appeared from the fray, running towards it in a zig zag pattern to keep it from getting a solid lock on her. It was a smart strategy when facing a gunman, but a tank was no gunman. It had splash damage capabilities that a regular gun simply didn't. It seemed the driver of the tank had realized this as well as the turret suddenly stopped swiveling and simply aimed at the center of Raina's path.
No! Cassius exclaimed in horror as the tank belched flames and a shell exploded right beside Raina as she dipped to zag after her zig.

Her body was thrown several feet, rolling like a ragdoll. It was burned and blackened from the explosion. Cassius felt the blood drain from his face, his mouth slacked open in sudden, complete fear. The turret swiveled, swinging around and aiming at the unmoving Raina to finish her off. Cassius began moving quickly, running towards her, anger filling his entire being. Deep down he knew it was already too late, but he refused to allow these monsters to disrespect Raina anymore than they had, to desecrate her like some throwaway trash. As the turret once again belched fire, Cassius leapt in between the tank and Raina. He knew this very well may be the end of him, these could be his final moments and yet he simply didn't care. He felt a new feeling come over him, power him, something to replace the anger and hatred. He genuinely cared about Raina and his students, he wanted them to live, to survive.

He felt the skin on his fist harden as he swiped at the incoming shell, causing it to explode to his left and sending a shockwave across his body, but he stood firm. Fire licked at the left side of his body, charring his skin and burning away some of his clothes, but when he looked at his left hand, the one that had deflected it and surely should have been blown clean off, he didn't find so much as a scratch. However, he didn't have time to focus on such a matter as he turned his attention to the tank as it began to reload.

Sprinting towards it, Cassius slid under the barrel of the turret, out of harm's way and brought his fist back before delivering a devastating punch.
YAAAARRGHHH!! He cried out in defiance.
The metal around his fist crinkled and split like tinfoil, caving in on the driver and crushing him within the metal. The treads of the tank buckled inward, towards the point of impact and the metal split all the way to the turret, causing it to cave in and slouch forward uselessly.

Cassius pulled his fist from the wreckage, content that the tank wasn't going anywhere or of any danger to his people. He stepped out from between the buckled treads and gazed upon shocked and silent faces. Without a word he moved towards Raina, the thugs putting down their weapons and simply leaving, after that display and the resistance they had met with Cassius's students, they had completely lost any morale or vigor they once had. It didn't help that their boss was currently unconscious and bleeding on the floor, his face more like shredded tuna than an actual face.

As the thugs left, Cassius kneeled down beside the unmoving body of Raina. It was clear she was gone and his heart ached far more than the burned flesh on the side of his body. She had wanted nothing but the best for her community, for her people. She wanted to fight for them, not for herself. There was no reason for such a young, beautiful life to be snuffed out so easily and Cassius knew, deep, deep down that Crowley would pay. That he'd burn the entire Royal Palace down if he had to, but this wasn't the time for anger or revenge. This was the time for mourning and burying of the dead.

A week later they held services for Raina and Cassius's other pupils. In total they had lost eight, twelve more had been seriously injured and still recovering. It had been a horrible blow to not only what they had built over the last few months, but to their morale as well. However, as they marched the caskets of the fallen through the streets of Galloon Town, the citizens of Galloon Town came out in droves. They brought flowers and trinkets, joined the procession all the way to the cemetery. By the end the line had amassed well over three hundred fishmen and women, all wishing to pay their respects to the people who had devoted their lives to protecting their community.

Cassius looked out over the sea of faces as Raina's casket was lowered into the ground. Tears welled in his eyes, a feeling he hadn't experienced in years washed over him. Support, compassion, community. These were all things the very same people of Galloon Town had denied him throughout his youth, now they recognized him as a protector and a server of the community. They looked to him now for guidance, for hope.
This is a time for remorse, for mourning and for reflection. This was not a defeat however, but a victory. We lost, He trembled for a moment before regaining himself, we lost a great number of wonderful, selfless people who had dedicated their lives to serving this community, to ridding the streets of the very people who ultimately took their lives. They became Galloon Town's protectors and will continue to serve Galloon Town. We will only grow from this, we will rid Fishman Island of such crime from the lowest of the slums to the highest office on this island, the Royal Palace. Someday, someday we'll have true equality on this island for fishmen, women and merpeople alike. That is our promise to you because that was the promise these brave people made before they left us. Thank you.

There was silence for a moment before a wave of applause and cheering washed across the funeral procession. Hundreds of hands cheered and shouted words of encouragement as Cassius looked down at Raina's casket and smiled,
You sparked a fire of change, now let's watch it rage across this island and expose every corner of darkness.


WORDS: 2970
NOTES: ###
DORIKI: +5 S&P & +5 S&A (In water);+5 E&D (Pugilist); +8 E&D
GEAR: ###

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