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"The Shades are coming, the Shades are coming! Lurkers running, Lurkers running! Rovers are hunting, they are stalking! Watch out for spinners always lying. Dash and pay the pursers hands. Hope to masters the shield still stands."
~ Cartel Initiates Rhyme

It all began only a few decades after the Krytan Civil War, in the dark docks of old Lion's Arch, there ran gangs. Each was backed by the Aekart Family as a means to keep an eye on their rival companies. Sometimes these gangs would sabotage shipments or even kill sea captains to hold up the cargo ships' day of sail. Whenever the Lionguard came to investigate, their hopes in breaking the gangs fell apart. The gang members communicated using a broken mixture of Krytan and Ascalonian.

After the fall of the Era of Bosses, and return to the new Lion's Arch after the city's re-founding, after years of evolving north in Divinity's Reach, the Cant had taken on Elonan and even Canthan terms. Within a few years of the Cartel accepting more non-humans into its fold, the Cant began to evolve even further. Norn, Asuran and even Charr terms began to rapidly evolve the language to the point where few of the original speakers who might have remained would barely comprehend it.

Modern TimesEdit

In the Dragon-Haunted Times of the modern era, the Cipher Tongue of the Cartel is simple, and yet diverse in some areas. Overall it is a mesh of terms from all the cultures and individuals who have spoken it over the past century. Many in the Cartel learn it during the early stages of their time as initiates or as Cartelites. Many of the information in the Cartel is taught in rhymes, or simple sayings passed down over the years. The usage of Ashic (as it has come to be called) is generally reserved for conversation between Cartelites, especially when they discuss issues in public. Ashic is generally composed of not only terms, but specific phrasing that often implies a different meaning than what it might seem.

DifferencesEdit

The terms, and even the dialect of Ashic, differs depending upon which sect the user is from. Sects often employ their own vernacular, including words and terms specific to that sect.

Spear TermsEdit

Grounds Local hang out for Spears.
Grunts Low ranked members of the Spear
Jaded A member of the Jade Ring
Lord / Lady Jade Legate of the Jade Ring
Lord / Lady Spear Master of the Spear
Lord / Lady Steel Legate of the Steel Ring
Rabbit A target of a contract
Steeled A member of the Steel RIng

Spear PhrasesEdit

Question "Do you seek freedom or control?"
Answer "Freedom in life, and order in honor."
A way for a Sentinel to identify another in the Spear.

Tome TermsEdit

Foolbound An insult for those that do not listen to advice
Glassbound A member of the Obsidian Circle
Ivorybound A member of the Ivory Circle
Lord / Lady Glass Legate of the Obsidian Circle
Lord / Lady Ivory Legate of the Ivory Circle
Lord / Lady Tome Master of the Tome
Students Low ranked members of the Spear
Tower Local hangout for Tomes
Vault A trusted member who keeps secrets


Tome PhrasesEdit

Question "Do you know of the Fool?"
Answer "Two Masters he took, one he made."
A way for a Magus to know he is in good company.

Crown TermsEdit

Coutier A low ranked member of the Crown
Darkeye A member of the Court of Rats
Dawneye A member of the Court of Rooks
Estate Local hangout for members of the Crown
Lord / Lady Crown Master of the Crown
Lord / Lady Rat Legate of the Court of Rats
Lord / Lady Rook Legate of the Court of Rooks
Lurker An insult for anyone that uncooperative with the Crown
The List Membership of the Crown
Overcourt The Court of Rooks
Undercourt The Court of Rats

Crown PhrasesEdit

Question "I play the game do you?"
Answer "No one plays the game. It plays them."
A way for a Crown member to know they are with an ally.

Bonded TermsEdit

Broken A Slave that is happy as a Slave
Perfumed A member of the Chain of Silk
Razor A member of the Chain of Blood
Sir (or Miss) Terms for ones betters, for their owner
Strung Along A slave passed between owners frequently


Shadow TermsEdit

These are terms gleaned through rumors of what the Shadow uses in their Ashic Dialect

Infidel A traitor to the Cartel
Chosen A member of the Shadow
His Chosen The leader of the Shadow

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