Errant Road: Gault's Story.

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Errant Road: Gault's Story.

Postby Hours » September 26th, 2010, 11:12 am

Okay... So I'm finally bored enough to actually write something like this and taking it on a little faith that people will actually give a damn.

Essentially, Gault's background is a lot longer and has a few more parts to it than the other Errant Road backstory in this section, so I wound up writing it in a few sections detailing a few different time periods that'll be spread out as I write up more and more. They'll come together or be relevant to one another in some ways, so I'm hoping it'll be interesting and readable.

Part 1 - Act 1: In the Beginnings.

There was something about the old church of Maven that William could never quite place. The little chapel was a dingy place full of dirt and cramped and worn old pews, the polish long since worn off by the passing the generations taking their seats to oberve this service or that homily. The windows were tall and thin like an old castle, there was very little light in there and in the early morning congregations the gloom could seem very much like thick black curtains hanging from the high cieling.

Of course the one thing that William would always remember was the light from the window behind the statue of Luminosita. In the early morning the darkness was almost palpable but for the light of the rising sun hitting that small stained glass window, the bright colors draining into the church around the Statue behind the altar, bringing with it a color and warmth to the cold and gloom of the chapel, and on many days you could feel that there was indeed some small wonder to it. The rising warmth of the dawn, a gift from Luminosita himself...

Of course those days were long behind, William was now Sargeant-at-arms William Gault of the Veracian Infantry, blessed to have fought under the light of Luminosita himself. The small wonders were these days gone, Father Bertram who had practically raised William had died the last summer and left William's elder brother his position as town preacher. Winter had fallen hard, filling the little church with a cold and oppressive air, and the statue seemed dead, illuminated by the hellish red candlelight instead of the brilliant colors of dawn from the tiny window.

The midnight hour was coming near and William sat in the front row, alone but for his brother who leaned by the altar.

He should have been happy... Actually he should have felt something at least, but all he could think was that soon the night would pass and he'd be standing in front of the town up by the altars, time it seemed would always move on. And somehow he felt that it wouldn't matter to the sun what it would shine on in the dawn.

---

There was something unfortunate about a day like today. You felt like today was a day for mourning for something lost. That the world seemed off kilter some how, as if the sun had rose crooked and nothing felt right. It had been months now that Gault had been searching, and months more that he had sat outside the door to this place just waiting for something to happen.

He'd been hurt, and for months now he'd starved and begged his way to survive, or hunted whatever pathetic creatures scratched away in the night just to keep his stomach fed, for the longest time it felt like all he had inside was fire, there was a brutality to the world that he'd not felt for the longest time, but right now at this moment all of it was standing right in front of him as if everything cruel in the world had come together to form one being to represent it, and here it faced him.

Gault was filthy, the rain and the sun had left his skin burning and his lungs felt as though they were full of boiling water. He was bleeding like a stuck pig from the gaping wound under his breastplate, and the woman just stood there in front of him, she licked her lips. He could tell that she thought he was disgusting, like he was some sort of stain on the world that had come to the door and had never left, and now it was her job to see him eviscerated and wiped away from the world.

Every inch of him screamed, his muscles aching under the effort to raise his sword one last time, stepping forward and clutching his chest, he made a noise like some sort of feral animal and moved to strike before he realised that he was already on his back, his arm felt broken and the world spun around him, whirling around off kilter.

All he could do was laugh as a young boy pulled him to his feet and propped him up. The steps felt slow, as if he were dragging along the world behind him as he trudged towards the opening door.

---

There wasn't a lot more to this job than learning how to stand and wait. It was a particular skill that Gault had taken months to finally learn and get close to mastering. The trick was that you had to look important enough to guard the important people, and as long as nothing went wrong they would overlook you and your comrade in arms as they walked through the door you were guarding.

Beyond that, however, nothing ever seemed to change these days. It was always the same ordeal, a life in repetition. You could watch the comings and goings of people in the city, and eventually you'll notice a few of them. Some of them you'll get to know by name, others you might just give a name because you never talk but you see them every day doing the same thing. A street vendor here, a regular into the cathedral there, a priest you never talk to, and a performer who stands at the bottom of the stairs to juggle for ends meet.

Gault was a guard, standing before the Orus Cathedral, home to the reliquary of Saint Arrendus. A place of priceless relics and artifacts of the church of Luminosita. And strangely it was a place where Gault felt a bit more content than most days. He was long away from home, away from the twins who had been run out of town, away from his father who had sat for a week in his chair in front of the fire before Gault was set to endure his first tour of duty, his brother had wished him farewell from where he was learning at the feet of the old priest in town.

This place was busy, day in and day out. It had a life, there was more interest here than in the crops and the trading markets, the living stock was one of the faithful of Luminosita and the daily grind of a great city. Gault smiled as one of the priestesses walked past, adjusting his polished helmet and exchanging a small word for a small blessing from her.

The job was dull, and in a way it was unrewarding. But it was far and away removed from home. And in a way it had some benefits, Gault thought as he watched the priestess walk inside.

---

The small port was a miserable place. The rain was falling hard from the sky as Gault stepped inside the shipping office, drenched with the "tears of Luminosita". Gault shook off his outer robe and hung it up on the coatrack just inside the front door.

The woman at the front desk was a dowdy creature, probably some old spinster working for a relative or the like, in Gault's experience women like that weren't so common in Veracia which had some more values than the rest of the world. Had things gone ideally in these parts the woman would have been a mother at home taking care of her children, but here she was, calling out a man named Hallend.

In short order they found themselves out at the Wharf. Hallend was running off his mouth, full of good praise for the vessel tied up before them.

"It's a Farrellian made vessel, made on east coast dry docks. The old ship's logs state that it was made around six years ago, and had been running between the northern lands, Farrel and the open ports of Veracia as part of an illegal charter operation selling contraband and... uhm... Human cargo, I would say the word is for much of its working life."

Gault stared at it, he didn't say a word.

"To be honest sir, we're having a hard time moving it. Up untill you came we'd been stuck in red tape with the local church seeing as how it's made with more than a few parts and mechanisms from the far west, we only just got permission to sell it on permissions that the buyer refits it last week, still with the extra cost you're our only buyer, and the docking fees are a bit high, so we're practically willing to give this thing away for the price of its scrap at this rate. If you'll just accompany me back to my office out of the rain I'll draw up the paperwork."

The rain kept on hammering down as Hallend tottered across the wet wharf towards the shipping office. Gault lingered behind for a moment, looking up at the rusty freighter.

"You'll have to do then..." Gault said to the rain.
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Re: Errant Road: Gault's Story.

Postby Graybeard » September 26th, 2010, 11:20 pm

Always useful to have backstory on characters like this. Keep it up!
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Re: Errant Road: Gault's Story.

Postby Jack Rothwell » September 27th, 2010, 8:06 am

A strong series of short scenes so far, I'm glad someone besides me and greybeard is taking the time to fill in the blanks regarding errant road. I'll be checking back on this. I'm beginning to get more of a sense of who Gault is, be interesting to see what this is leading to.
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