Freedom... With A Price

IC Time: Early evening - May 21, 2007
Location: Volterra - Castle: Dungeons
Synopsis: Aro makes an offer to the prisoners. The offer is heavily in his favor, of course. The prisoners are left to mull it over.
Submitted by: Aro

The lights come on, a buzzer sounds. Someone is coming down — the guard on duty glares into Abbey's cell. "Wake up and make sure you're fit to talk, if you know what's good for you. Word is they don't want you down here no more." He snickers and drags a metal chair across the floor, situating it in front of Abbey's cell. From the direction of the hall, Aro comes in, flanked by a few others, and promptly, he sits down, peering at Abbey. "Good evening!"

Abbey blinks slowly while she lifts her head, pale gaze narrowing slightly at the sudden lights while she lifts a hand and slowly rubs it acros her face. She sits up, stretching while she goes. Don't want them here anylonger? She ponders this while she lets her gaze settle upon the chair before she cell while she lets her hands settle upon her lap. At the moment she is wearing a black robe that Inari gave her, and Aset seems to be with her, with a robe of his own and sleeping. "Evening.." She offers to Aro, her gaze settling against his before she looks over the ones that are with him.

"I heard Inari was with you. It looks like you were good, considering the new apparel," Aro says lightly, a smirk in his eyes. "Anyway." His hands steeple together. "Tell me, how interested are you in getting out of here? Or, to put it this way, what can you give me in turn for your freedom?" His eyes skim Aset's sleeping figure.

Abbey ahs softly a few moments. "She was.." As to being good she suppose she has been doing that. She blinks at the questions, a glance offered to Aset before she looks back to him. "I'm not sure just what I could offer you.. I have nothing to offerother then myself." She smirks at that and shrugs. "I'm not sure what use you would have with a wolf though."

"You'd be surprised," Aro murmurs, not seeming too disappointed at her offer, though he does sigh and add: "I thought you'd be more creative, really. You're bargaining for your life here, after all." There is a pause. "You know, you haven't gotten to see much of Volterra all holed up down here. It's rather nice. Did you know it's the safest city in the world? That's right, we never harm the humans here. And, as you might know, we pride ourselves on controlling the rest of the immature and careless vampire population. In a way, we're almost on /your/ side," he suggests softly, raising one brow.

Abbey lifts her hands slowly. "You've taken everything from me.. I own nothing that you could possibly want." She refuses to even think about the rest of her family. "So I've been told, one of the safest in the world.. But I can only wonder why it is." A faint ah escapes her at the talk about them almost being on her side.

Aset sits not far from where Aro and Abbey speak, his back rested against the cool wall behind him. His eyes have been closed since the elder vampire had entered the cell, and his breathing pattern seemed to suggest that he was asleep…until now. Slowly his eyes open, only to blink several times once the sharp scent of Cold One reaches his nose. Taking a deep breath he watches for the moment as Abbey converses with one of their captors' top brass.

"I think we both know why. The greatest protectors in the world live here." Aro smiles calmly, glancing to Aset, and absently wondering if he might stir. "Isn't that what your race refers to themselves as?" he asks, as if he was 'surprised' by his own connection. "…Hmmm. You know, I've been thinking. Perhaps our kind could be stronger together. No more wars. Wouldn't that be nice?" He continues to speak as if he just thought of everything, though 'secretly' his speech is very deliberate. "So what you're saying is all you can offer is yourself. Do you have any qualities I might be interested? Leadership, perhaps?" His crimson eyes flicker to Aset, watching his breath but not saying anything else. "I heard you were an alpha," he continues on with Abbey. "It can be difficult to lead, no? Always looking out for your people. What if you could guarantee that the vampires would do no more harm to your people? All by an agreement you could make. What would you do?"

Abbey watches Aro as he speaks, a glance offered to Aset a few moments, she's rather sure he is waking up as she catches the way he is breathing. She looks back to Aro. "It would be nice for such a thing to happen." Does she think it will happen? Not anytime soon. She smirks faintly at the were comment about her being alpha and she lets her hands settle back to her lap, gaze lowering to the floor. "I would do just about anything to make my pack safe. But even you much understand that I can not speak for every wolf out there. The only ones that would listen to me would be my pack, not the others." She ponders what qualities a vampire would want to hear, especially from a wolf. "You know I'm the alpha of my pack, which is leadership." "An yes.. we do consider ourselves protectors, of the humans."

Aset's eyes squint slightly as he regards Aro with a somewhat knowing gaze. How coincidental that he would wake in time to hear those words.. The wolf-man couldn't help but shake his head lightly, which turned to rolling as if he was simply stretching out his neck. For the time being he remains silent, looking to Aro for a moment more, then to Abbey for just a bit longer, and then right back to Aro again. He shifts his position, and tucks his legs beneath him before clasping his hands within his lap. Overall, the werewolf looked quite disciplined in this position. Abbey's doing a good job at speaking for them, as Aro had previously noted that she was the Alpha of the Shadowstalker Pack.

Aro strokes his chin thoughtfully and then nods. "I consider myself a protector, too. We carefully monitor the human population and make sure it remains at a safe level." He doesn't go into anything further, instead watching Aset thoughtfully. "Good evening. Please, do chip in if you have thoughts." He politely directs his attention back to Abbey. "Sure, I understand that. But there aren't /that/ many Children of the Moon out there." His mind spins, but he doesn't allow himself to voice all of his plans, instead, he stands elegantly, folding his hands in front of him. "So, as I was saying. You're tired of being here and we've got better things to do than guard dogs in our dungeons. So, we either exterminate you both, or we come up with a little solution that works out nicely for everyone involved. One of you walks free, and one of you stays. Not in the dungeons, mind you, but as a servant. And the other… well, freedom does have its price." He smiles ironically. "The one who roams free will try and recruit as many Children of the Moon as possible to a new cause: an alliance with the Volturi and the Children of the Moon. Of course, there will be certain… stipulations, but that's all just fine print." Aro waves a hand. "But if anything goes wrong out there or if we sense a rebellion of sorts, we will swiftly and apologetically kill the servant."

Abbey blinks as she listions and watches Aro a few moments, right sure sounds like a great plan! "Well.. we are somewhat tired of being here, there is only so many times you can count the bricks in this place after all." She blinks as Aro goes one and seems a bit unsure what to say at first. Well, gee sounds like a great idea. "That depends.. What is the fine print?" She questions while smirking before she takes in a breath. "If one of us has to stay here.. Then I will." When it comes to try and talk anyone into anything Aset is better at it to start with. Though her saying she'll stay isn't that hard to believe seeing how

Aset remains as is, and offers a light nod of his head to Aro when the elder makes note of his consciousness. Still though, the dark-skinned wolf remains quiet, and his eyes again move their focus to Abbey when the vampire finishes speaking. Certainly, there were a few things that he was not going to agree to wholeheartedly, but Abbey was their voice for the time being. The fact that they were talking peace though, that seemed to resonate with Aset, even if he barely showed it. When Abbey notes that she will stay though, the male wolf is quick to clear his throat. "I'm… Sorry," he starts, taking a breath before looking to Aro as he rises to his feet rather gracefully. "But we don't leave each other…" he explains, bowing his head ever so slightly. "You have plenty of servants, mighty Aro… The only reason there is to take more is to parade them around for your own amusement. That's…not our way. If you want to benefit from the Children of the Moon, a great asset I must admit… They can't be slaves, or servants, not a one of them. Those that follow your laws and take up your causes are not slaves. They are just law abiding. I understand the need to have an emissary, a go between, a diplomat… Is that what you're proposing? If so, I will say that while trust is something that is earned… I like the idea." Aset's eyes remain focused onto Aro's for another couple of seconds, and then he looks back to Abbey as if again noting that she is Alpha.

"The fine print… is something that can be, quite literally, worked into a contract. I am a business man in that aspect," Aro says, dodging the question with as much grace as he can muster. He diverts his gaze to Aset and listens respectfully, though not without a careful ear — Caius had warned him. "If the stake was living or dying, I'm sure you could leave each other. At least, for a bit." He smiles. "It would be downright foolish of me to let you both leave after learning ever-so-much about the way my coven works. However." He steeples his hands together again, habitually. "If you'd like to call it a diplomat, that works. But he or she would have to stay here until trust can be earned. Speaking of trust." Aro pauses. "You don't want to be treated like slaves, so the speak, and want the same respect I give my own subjects? Understandable, and indeed, something I can hope to the future for. But a few extra rules and a watchful eye is very necessary, for my own protection. How can I trust that the Children of the Moon wouldn't turn their backs on us? No, we would need to have some of the Volturi guard watching their moves."
Aro signals to the two guards and then moves closer toward the cell. "Perhaps if I better understood your intentions I might be able to suit this… arrangement to your needs." The cell doors and other mechanisms are released and the guards slip into the cell with Aro, cautious. "May I?" Aro reaches a hand to Aset, surely intending to use his power of thought reading to understand Aset's goals. He already got a read on Abbey.

Abbey blinks as she listens to Aset and peers at him a moment before shaking her head. See, his better at the talking bit and he just proved it right there. She should have known that he wouldn't want to leave though. Her gaze turns back to Aro and she nods slightly. "We don't expect you to trust us right away.." As much as she would want that to happen she doesn't trust them so it goes both ways after all. She lifts her head some as Aro moves into the cell and she slips quiet while just watching and stays put.

Aset squints slightly as he listens to Aro, and shakes his head as he hears the bit about the fine print. "We'd have to know of those contractual stipulations before you could take us at our word about any sort of agreement…" he offers, looking from Abbey again to Aro. When the vampire comes close to touch him, Aset's brow furrows a bit. "You can read thoughts…" he starts, having gotten that bit of information from another vampire during one of their many meetings. "You may, but listen… We're a team, she and I. A partnership. If you keep one of us, I'd need you to welcome us both here, to and from here… One out at a time, both together, here when we wanted. You know what it's like to have someone special? Whether you do now or not… You know what it's like. That's all I want, at the base of all of this… Her safe, me safe, and us together," he explains before taking Aro's hand. It is true, Aset genuinely wants peace, and a working relationship with the vampires. Of course, he also wants more of his people in this world, but after so many years of plotting their demise finally spilling Volturi blood is the last thing on his agenda. "Remember that peace only works when everyone feels equal.. Even if it takes -some- time to get there."

"As do we," Aro says to the alpha, amiable. He turns to Aset and regards him with a sort of somberness as he takes the werewolf's hand, touching it lightly for but a moment — his brows raising and then falling — "Interesting… Aset. You have a bit of a strong will, no?" He can see why Caius was frightened, but his intentions appear good. Aro turns his back and steps out of the cell along with the guard, and then stands on the outside, listening to Aset's request. "Yes, the other would be welcome here whenever. We'd fix you up with a private quarters with all modern amenties," he says absently, as if it was no worry to him. "Hmm." Stroking his chin again, Aro studies Abbey and then Aset. "I will leave you two to talk about my offer. My dear brother Caius will draft up our stipulations and bring them to you. Perhaps then a final decision can be reached… I trust Caius to come to an agreement on this matter if I am unavailable." Aro smiles. "It was a pleasure. I'll have the guard bring down a few steaks."

Abbey smiles slightly as she hears Aset, perhaps even blush a moment before she glances off and clears her throat. She turns her gaze back to Aro and nods slightly while he goes on. Well this is rather interesting to say the least. "We're talk about it.." That's for sure. Abs smirks at the talk about steaks and has to hold back to the urg to bark and rolls her eyes a moment. "Thank you for speaking with us.. We're look forward to reading over what is written up."

Aset nods once to Aro, only to clarify. "With changing shifts on who must stay and who must go. Of course, I could see no problem with such a proposal then," he offers with a light nod. "We've been hungry," he offers with a nod of thanks to the mention of the steaks that will be brought. "Wine as well, if you have any… Though this IS Italy, so.." he says, grinning slightly at that. "Pleasure as well, Aro. Kiri did not exaggerate when she described you…" he notes before looking to Abbey then. "Indeed, we're looking forward to it. I hope this peace works… You know exactly how much," he offers these words for Aro and Abbey alike as he continues to look to the other wolf with a soft smile.

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