Divinity’s Reach. 1328 AE.
“We can cut you a deal, Ironwood”
An uncomfortable silence follows. Captain Montre looks at him expectantly.
“What kind of deal”
He watches him shuffle his papers around, like the officer has somewhere to be and would love nothing more than to be rid of the Norn, but that’s not likely. Few things could be as or more important that what just walked through his door. Jesse knows that much. Jesse knows he’s being treated humanely as well, something he hadn’t anticipated. He’s not going to correct them now, he’s never corrected them when they think him as one of their own.
“We have contracting positions available for those willing to take them.There are… certain individuals that pose a threat to Kryta, and with the Blades spread thin around the city as it is, we could use the extra help” He’s stroking his beard. A man of hubris, he knows that look well, he wore it himself for a while until it no longer suited him.
“Blood money, you mean”
“If that’s what you want to call it. You bring us information, using whatever your previous connections can get you, we’ll decode, you fulfill the contract. Keep whatever you like, just bring us proof you’re doing as you must”
“And in return?”
“Your bounty disappears. We don’t imprison you for crimes against Kryta. Need I remind you, Ironwood, that you’ve ransacked numerous cargo vessels, merchant ships, civilian ships? I have the execution orders still here, if you’d like to see them–”
“It’s Captain Ironwood”
“I hardly think it’s fitting anymore, considering your lack of vessel”
“I don’t see you with one either. Captain”
The man regards him with careful, amber eyes. He focuses on his arm, and Jesse almost shies away, but the Blade’s gaze drops, and returns to him. More scribbling. He loathes the sound of pen on paper, he loathes it almost as much as he loathes being stuck in these hidden offices, secreted away. How could they not? He’s a pirate. A wanted man — well, he was once. Captain Montre coughs as he sets down his quill. “… now, you said a mutiny?”
“And what happened to them? Just want to make sure I get my facts together before we throw you back out into the world”
“Dead. Ship was trashed in the aftermath of that little weed’s attack on Lion’s Arch. The Black Hand is now siding for someone’s house, as far as I know”
“And…. this?” He gestures to the hook. It twitches in response. Jesse’s jaw sets in a grimace.
“ … Happened during”
Sheepish. He hides it from view, drawing his tattered scarf off his neck and over the thing. It doesn’t help, but it blocks it from the human’s view. That’s enough.
“I see. I’ll submit your paperwork, you’ll be staying here for the time being, while we finalize the contacting. It’s quite the turn you’ve taken, Captain. A daring, pillaging pirate like yourself, working for the law? It’s almost unheard of”
“…didn’t get much of a choice in the matter, did I?”
Another quiet silence. The other, shipless captain places his daggers, a pistol on the table.
“There is… a distinct lack of good men in our service, Jesse. Thugs looking for easy money. At the cost of something precious, you’ve been given a second chance. Don’t waste it”
His fist balls in the scarf, knuckles popping — and then he sits back, pulling his hat from his head, taking this pause as a moment of conflicted evaluation. Spitting back would do nothing. His chest feels hollow. Even with these promises, even with this guarantee that he’s safe from the Blades, there are still more battle to be fought and won. He sets his jaw as the final signing happens, his name a scrawled X with his untrained right hand.
His warrants are set ablaze. He feels a part of himself die.