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Fantasy A War of Kings

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by spycoder9, Sep 10, 2012.

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  1. dreven_Aarkanin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 9, 2010
    star 2
    GM Approved! [face_dancing]

    Name: Akahli Forestwalker
    Age: 20
    Gender: Male
    Appearance: He is extremely thin, yet powerful. He has long, shoulder-length brown hair and jade green eyes that almost seem to glow. His face seems effeminate, the result of elemental shaping. He has a scar shaped like the sun around his right eye that has gone black over time, standing out starkly on his face. He stands about 6’0 in height. He wears a hooded, form-fitted forest green tunic, Black Hand bracers, and black boots.
    Homeland: From the beyond
    King: He bows only to Mother Fate.
    Occupation: Mage, Speaker of the forgotten tongue, Prophet of destiny.
    Biography:
    Earth, Wind, Water, Fire.
    All that has come before is gone.
    All that was before was burned away by fire, washed by the water, blown away by the air, and buried in the earth.
    Only the servant remains.
    Mother Fate, his protector.
    Brother Sun, his guide.
    Sister Moon, his light.

    Mirwyth knows naught of these old gods; they see only what has been given to them.
    They see not the truth, only the blind lie they have been taught.
    It is time for change.
    Mother Fate demands it.

    Akahli is her chosen instrument. He is weak and feeble, yes, but with his goddess’ blessing? He is powerful indeed. He cannot see her ultimate ends, but he knows the visions, and the prophecies. He knows this is his destiny.

    It is time the elements were awakened once more.
    Jedi_padawan_leigh likes this.
  2. HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2001
    star 6
    The Queen
    Catwalks

    For a moment, Emilia was afraid for her son. The hate and anger reflected in his eyes were so like his father, that she was beginning to doubt his capabilities and whether he would be prepared for the trials ahead. In fact, it was enough to force her to take a step back and re-access the situation. Even then, her hesitation only lasted a moment.

    "Lower your voice," she ordered sternly, noting the town below and the potential for their voices to carry on the wind. "That kind of talk is treason and we must not allow it to spread. It's a poison, don't you understand that? It could ruin us."

    Taking a deep breath, she briefly closed her eyes and allowed the cool night air to brush against her face. When she started to speak again, her voice was a near whisper. "You will have your revenge against Kildare. I promise you that. And your father...well, he has made one too many mistakes. Your time as King is coming quickly, my son. You must be prepared and House Kildare will be your first trial."

    TAG: @spycoder9
  3. witchdoctor07 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2007
    star 1
    OOC: Finally here it is, sorry for the novel here but I’m glad to finally be getting started with this. And thank you to Spycoder9 who helped me out with this first post

    IC: Ser Alistair Bryce

    16 Days before the wedding

    Foot of the Mountains of Mirwyth

    Snow covered forest

    It had been nearly a week now and Alistair was growing tired; tired of the snow, tired of the wind, and especially tired of the cold. These mountains could be unforgiving to an inexperienced traveler, especially those who was unaccustomed to the harsh environment of the north. But luck was on Alistair’s side since he had hunted individuals in these mountains many times, sometimes their trails would lead him all the way up past Shodair and Cyrell. Luckily this time though his quarry did not have more than a day’s ride ahead of him so Alistair was in no hurry, chances were that the man he was hunting had no idea anyone was following him, but that very well could have been hubris on Alistair’s part. But either way the man had to stop and sleep and eat for the night just like him. After all, the mountains could be a dangerous place at night.

    Alistair poked at the coals from last night’s sorry excuse for a fire, ever since he came into the highlands he had to regulate his fires to a small but comfortable size so as to not reveal his position and distance to outlaw ahead of him. Once the coals began to glow to a cherry red once more he put in a few pieces of kindling to reignite the flame so he could at least warm his hands and feet this morning and maybe have a somewhat hot meal. Alistair sat with his feet towards the fire and his hands outstretched towards the small flame, trying to soak up whatever heat he could, he would need it.


    After he broke his fast on sausage, a couple of stale biscuits and few swigs from his wine flask he slide his frozen leather gloves back onto his hands and threw his woolen cloak over his shoulders followed by his scabbard which held Shadow Bane, his sword which he had carried for years and was a gift from his uncle. It was a long blade and not very suitable to wear on his hip so he made due by slinging it a crossed his back. He untied his horse from the low hanging branch that he had tied it to for the night, put his foot in the stirrup and hauled himself into the saddle. Today is a new day he told himself a chance for new tracks, a chance to gain ground, and a chance to catch the man named Ulrick who never gave that poor girl a chance a few villages back when he had forcefully taken her and bedded her and then killed her. She never had a chance, not a chance for a life, a husband or children since this evil man had robbed her of all of it.

    The family of the poor girl had come to him in the local inn that night, red eyed and trembling to ask for his help, it was no secret who he was or what he was and what kind of business he dealt in. They pleaded with him and asked for his help to find their daughter’s killer, they didn’t have much but they were willing to give what they had to Alistair in order to see justice brought to this man. He accepted the contract without payment, it was the least he could do for this grieving couple who had lost their only child. He actually counted himself lucky for being at the right place at the right time, if he had not been there then this crime would have gone unpunished and soon would have been forgotten in a couple of weeks. Alistair might have been a cold and ruthless hunter but unlike most swords for hire he still kept a piece of his humanity clutched tight to himself.


    He had been riding for what may have been close to an hour when he stopped his horse to at the opening of a clearing where his prey’s tracks had led him. He leaned down in his saddle to inspect the horse tracks; they were fresh maybe made yesterday, he could tell that the horse was tiring, he was close. He sat back up in his saddle and looked out onto the clearing. A perfect place for an ambush if Alistair had dared venture out into the open and barren clearing, which had obviously at one time been a clear-cut for some villagers needing wood for their houses or a milling company cutting wood to send down river to the capital city, either way it was a place that Alistair would like to avoid, unless he enjoyed a crossbow bolt through his neck. He turned his horse to the east and slowly made his way around the edge of the clearing, staying just far enough back in the tree so as to avoid being seen from any prying eyes that may have been watching the clearing.

    His trek around the clearing was fairly calm, until the sounds of heavy crunching could be heard. From an opposite side of the clearing, coming through heavy woods, an entourage of soldiers in heavy plated armor and warhorses stormed through. At its head was a large man, with a light maroon robe over his glinting armor. He had jet black hair, and piercing blue eyes that seemed to take in all of the surroundings. His jaw was tense, set tightly as if he was deep in thought. In one hand were the reins of his horse, in the other his sword. Fresh blood was still on it. These are wicked men thought Alistair, he didn’t know for certain but he had a feeling in his gut that these men were not your average foraging party. Alistair leaned forwards in his saddle and whispered into his horse’s ear while gently pulling the reins to the right side.

    “Easy boy, easy. On your side you go.”Alistair whispered gently and with that and a slight pull on the reins the well trained horse slowly eased itself to the ground to lie on its side in the snow while at the same time Alistair eased himself out of his saddle to lie down next to the horse. Both horse and rider lied there silently and still, not wanting to move a muscle, the air passed slowly through the horse’s nose. Alistair lied behind the horse on his stomach, peeking over the horses flank to watch the clearing as the riders continued to file out of the tree line and into the clearing.

    The entourage continued to come from the woods, growing larger and larger as it filled the clearing. Many men and many horses, bore the sigil of none other than House Reynard, these were capital soldiers. What were they doing this far north? Alistair kept rolling it around in his mind, for weeks he had heard rumors of the War of Kings from people in the villages he had rode through. Rumors of southern men roaming the mountains passes, raping, pillaging, and plundering their way farther north, but most people just wrote off the rumors as being the work of brigands since no one as of yet had lived to confirm these rumors. Suddenly a deep and booming voice pulled Alistair out of his thoughts.

    "Halt." The large man growled, lowering himself from his horse. "We shall rest here for a night. And then we ride onwards." They began to unload their materials, and lay out camping materials. Some of the southern soldiers were injured, or had dry blood on them. And then making up the back of the formation were several bedraggled men and women who had ropes tied around their wrists. One Alistair would recognize perfectly as his prey, Ulrick. He was stained with blood, and he limped as if one of his legs were broken. Another person inside the group of prisoners was a young lady, none other than a peasant girl. She was un-garbed from the waist down, and shamefully tried to hide herself from the knights. She had a pretty but simple face, and wide hips, which could most likely explain why she had no pants on. These weren’t regular prisoners; they were bedraggled or injured. They were slaves. Well I was right; Ulrick didn’t get too much farther. These soldiers must have caught up with him the day before, looks like he put up a fight or else he wouldn’t be in such a sad state. Thought Alistair with a slight feeling of smugness, he just wished he had been the one to capture him not this band. But as he thought on it more the idea came to him there still might be a chance for that.

    "We'll ride at sunrise." The large man commanded as he entered the tent that had been recently erected for him. "Burning the Wanesford is our next objective." The Wanesford was yet another castle that lay down the river. Its lord was a petty man, and they had few soldiers, they keep would be easily destroyed with this many men.

    “Damn! sunrise? I’ll have to act swiftly if I want any chance of getting those folks out alive. Well that settles it then; we’ll go in tonight Horse.” He said nonchalantly to his horse as if it were another person he was talking to. Once more the horse and rider rose slowly and made their way quietly down the slope to his right and down into a small creek, which he followed for a few minutes before he came upon a small encirclement of boulders beside the creek. This will be a good place to wait until darkness he thought to himself as he led his horse into the small alcove of rocks. Alistair and his horse waited in the small alcove, which gave them both sufficient protections from the wind, now the only thing Alistair wished for was a fire.

    Darkness had come sooner than Alistair had expected and had taken him by surprise. Now was the time, the time the owl, the bat and the shadowcat, all did their hunting. Alistair had stripped down what he normally wore, he took off anything that glittered or shined and left behind anything that would rattle, in the end he was stripped down to his leather trousers, boots, and his tunic and his woolen cloak. As always though he kept Shadow Bane close, safely slung over his back and his elk horn dirk on his hip. He made his way by foot back down the small creek that he had rode down earlier in the day; he had left Horse behind so as to not draw any unneeded noise. It wasn’t long before he came upon the edge of the clearing once more. Where he squatted just inside the tree line and observed the encampment. The guards had a few night fires burning but there were still shadows and gaps between the guards around the camp that he could easily slip through.

    It was not long before Alistair was inside the camp and had located the small area where they kept the slaves. Getting to this point was a great risk for Alistair but he hoped it would be worth it in the end and at the same time he wondered what his uncle would have done if he found himself in this position. Tonight was indeed his lucky night though, mainly due to the fact that they had only one guard watching over the small group of prisoners. Slowly and surefootedly he snuck up behind the complacent and half asleep guard and slid his dirk up under his chin and felt the warm liquid of his life force slowly drain out of him and over Alistair’s hand. Once the guard finally stopped kicking, Alistair slowly lowered his to the ground and then immediately went to work freeing the prisoner’s. It didn’t take long considering that most were just bound at the wrist, except for Ulrick who had been bound at the feet as well. They too must have seen him as a dangerous man. Ulrick was a large fat man but powerful in his own way so Alistair cut the bindings from his feet but left the ones on his hands. Ulrick stood and turned on Alistair.

    “Who in the bloody hell are you?!” he said in a harsh whisper. But Alistair ignored him and simply made a simple hand gesture towards the others, indicating that he wanted them all to follow him. Ulrick let out a grunt but finally gave in to common sense and followed Alistair and the rest. Alistair’s luck held up until they were well out of the camp as well. When they were well into the tree line Alistair pulled back his hood so the scared people could at least see the face of the man that rescued them. It was then that Ulrick finally decided to speak his mind.

    “Alight now who the bloody hell are you and you better answer right fast!” he demanded of the stranger who stood before him. Alistair with a demeanor as cool as the winter air around them slowly turned to the large ugly man who thought he had the right to make demands. As Alistair looked him over for the first time he noticed that he was quite indeed an ugly man, with pale fleshy skin and a missing right ear as well as a long hideous scar on the right side of his face, the likes of which was undoubtedly done with a battle axe.

    “I’m the man who saved your miserable life you pathetic creature, you were lucky those soldiers caught you first, I wouldn’t have been so forgiving, not after what you did to that girl.” He said in an iced tone.

    “So you’re the one they sent after me aye? Those cowardly little worms couldn’t do it themselves. Ha! Pathetic! Well then come on with it then kill me Ser Chivalrous! If you got the stones for it.” He exclaimed. But Alistair just stood there, listening to the breeze blow through the pines. In the distance a Shadowcat let out a blood curdling roar.

    “No. I admit I am far from a chivalrous knight, but quick death from my blade would be a mercy you do not deserve. There is a special place in hell for men like you. You may go but not with this group. I wonder what will kill you first, the cold or the Shadowcat? You are bleeding quite a bit and with that leg the way it is I doubt you’ll make it far so if I was to bet, I would put my coin on the cat. You best get a move on, it will only get colder tonight.” Said Alistair as he turned and led the group back to where he had stashed his horse and equipment.

    “Go plough yourself Hunter!” the man yelled as he turned and tried limping as fast as he could back south. It didn’t take long until they reached the alcove in the rocks. Alistair began digging inside his saddle bags and bedroll for something that was unknown to the others in the group. He soon turned back with a couple of sacks filled with stale biscuits and bacon; he divided equally amongst the prisoners.

    “You are all free to go where you please, those supplies should last you a few days, go back to you villages. Go home.”He proclaimed to them.

    “But what of that man Ulrick, what if he comes back?” one of the older men exclaimed.

    “He won’t ser, trust me.” Alistair said, he wanted to smile but he withheld. And with that they departed, at least the ones who had homes to still go back to. The only one left when it was done was the poor peasant girl who was naked from the waist down, still desperately trying to cover herself. Alistair once again untied his bed roll and produced another set of leather trousers, obviously oversized for the girl but it was better than being naked in this weather.

    “Here put these on. They aren’t the warmest but they are better than what you have now.” He said as he handed them to her.

    “Thank you” she said shyly as she bent to put them on. Alistair turned around politely so as to give the girl some privacy.

    “Why did you not go with the others, do you not have a home?” he asked trying to be kind as his back was still turned.”

    “No ser, my home was Harrowmont, but those men put it to the torch and killed both my mother and father.” She said quietly

    “I am sorry to hear that. You are welcome to ride along with me if you like my lady. I am heading to Wanesford come dawn. ”He said trying to comfort her as best he could. She had finally laced up the leather trousers as best she could and cinched it down to keep them from falling.

    “Wanesford? But that is where those soldiers are heading next, they’ll burn it to the ground, just like Harrowmont!” she almost screamed. Alistair could see the fear in her eyes.

    “I know and that is why I must go there, to warn them, so no more innocent lives are lost.” he tried to come off as being calm and collected but inside he too was slightly scared and confused. Then his uncle Magnus’s words rang in his ears. Even being a Hunter you should always be scared, it’s what keeps you alive lad.His uncle had never steered him wrong before and certainly not now. “If you want I can leave you at another village or keep along the way, you may be safe there for a time. I cannot guarantee your safety but I would bet that Wanesford is one of the safest places given out current circumstances. The shy peasant girl finally agreed and with that they departed to find a safer place for the night, father away from the southern soldier’s camp. He let the young woman ride in the saddle as he walked with Horse’s reins in his hand leading them through the darkness covered snowy pine forest. It was quiet except for the breeze through the trees, and then a Shadowcat’s roar broke the silence of the night and then a man’s screams, the cat had made a kill.

    Tag: @spycoder9
    Last edited by witchdoctor07, Mar 3, 2013
    Trieste likes this.
  4. Ktala Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 7, 2002
    star 6
    Lorain Ashkey, Blacksmith Shop - The Deserts of Mirwyth
    Near Aqarda, Abandoned Town, Desert Coast - Nightfall


    Lorain didnt know how Fleet would take her words. The boy had so much to deal with in such a short time. She watches him, as she tells him he was welcomed to stay with her. Tears slowly began to fall from his eyes, and Lorain fights to keep her own from falling as well. She watches as Fleet wipes his own eyes, before turning to fully face her. He peeks out at her,
    from under his mop of hair, red eyes fully on her. As she tells him, that she will stay with him, and that they would indeed bury Kaili, he is very quiet. He slowly looks up at her, and nods then. He looks at her for what felt like a long while, as if searching for something, before his gaze finally came to rest at her eyes.

    He nodded once more, and then frowned. Lorain was about to ask him what was wrong, when she heard him say, "Someplace peaceful…" he repeated, almost like an echo, his gaze far away for a moment. Then he focused back on Lorain. "I want to be big and strong….and brave." He stated simply. It was, perhaps, a sort of personal declaration, a resolution, a realization. "I don't want more folks dying b'cause of me. I want to protect them." A look came over his face, and Lorain could relate to the heartache that Fleet was now feeling.

    Without saying another word, Fleet offered Lorain a tight smile, then wrapped his arms around her and hugged her. He gave her a squeeze, and held on to her for a moment, and for that moment, Lorain hugged him back just as fiercely, if not more so. She had lost her father, and now, had gained another to fill an ache within her. Like her own brother, but so much more.
    Fleet would be even more dependent on her. And she on him. It would take both of their strengths to get through what would be needed next. So she clung on to him, letting him hold on for as long as he needed. She wanted to tell him so much, but now was not the time. Later, they would talk. But for now, this is what was needed. After a bit, he slowly let her go, looking into her eyes again. His smile was a bit sad, but the resolve remained in his eyes. Lorain gave him a slow nod.Taking that with him, he turned and faced the room, and proceeded to walk back in. Lorain watched him. Already, Fleet had grown. More than he realized. A hard brutal lesson, on top of so many others he had already learned. Lorain would do her best, to spare him any more lessons. He deserved the chance to be a child, before being forced to deal with such things. If she could do so, she would give him that chance, before the world changed him. With a sigh, Lorain followed him back into the room slowly. She heard him sigh, and then shake his head lightly.

    Lorain quietly walked over, and stood behind Fleet. She spoke gently to him, as he watched over Kaili. "You need to get some rest, Fleet. Both of us do. Tomorrow, is going to be quite busy. We need to carefully move about, and gather whatever supplies we can find here. My Da taught me some things about crossing the deserts, and I've grown up in em. If we're lucky, we might catch a caravan to travel with, but if not, we have got to prepare to leave here. Before them others decided to come looking for us." Lorain sat gently on the foot of the bed. "We will need supplies, so tomorrow, we will find what the gods have left to us. And tomorrow night, we are leaving this town. It's dangerious to move at night, but so is staying here. We'll have to travel parallel to the roads, until we find a group to travels with...and that they think Im a male...THAT shouldnt be too hard." Lorain snorted softly. Lorain dimmed the one light.

    "Go now. Get some sleep, Fleet. You'll need it, come the morrow." Lorain stood, and moved over to the other side of the room, and made herself a small pallet to sleep on. She already had plans on what she would need to gather, and make to prepare for their journey across the desert. So far, the gods had done pretty well by them. Maybe they were looking for a change of things as well. All she knew was that she needed to get Fleet and Kaili out of there, and get gone before either those knights gained companions, or that got bored enough to come looking for them. Neither of those things, would be good for them. So come the morn, they would begin what might be the hardest part yet, as their travels would take them through the desert, and hopefully to a safe place for them all.




    Tag: @greyjedi125 (GM, desert fox) ;) more to follow...
    greyjedi125 likes this.
  5. spycoder9 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 23, 2008
    star 4
    17 Days Before the Wedding
    Mountains, Mirwyth
    The Brooke, Snowy Ford


    Malik and Rosa were indeed exhausted.

    Not to mention the emotional torment of losing virtually all of their family and household, they also were physically tired. Even as bastards, they had been royalty, and were used to extravagant pleasures.

    Lady Sybella, maintaining the calm poise that became her, exchanged a glance with her husband before rising from her seat. “Come with me. I’ll make sure you two receive fine treatment. You deserve it, for your bravery and perseverance.” She smiled, a sweet one, and laid one hand on each of their backs as she led them from the room.

    Rowan also rose and nodded to his father, before he exited the room as well. He seemed to be well bred for the job.

    Now all that was left was the war council, with which Fredrik would call together his military advisor, his brother-in-law Hestor Daltree, Fredrik’s eldest son, and other men of the guard. It seemed that his wife had took it upon herself to leave the council to the men.


    TAG: @Rilwen_Shadowflame, @Winged_Jedi
  6. greyjedi125 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2002
    star 4
    IC:Fleet
    19 Days before the wedding, Desert Coast
    Mirwyth, Abandoned Smithy

    It happened slowly and gradually, but the urchin boy didn't even realize when he had fallen asleep. Or when Lorain had put him on the cot next to Kaili.

    And so, Fleet found himself transported to the land of dreams, and even here, the young boy could find no respite.

    He sobbed quietly against the post where his hands were tied. Father Tucker had put the switch to his back for some perceived transgression once again. He was exhausted and in great pain, and dared not move a muscle. He could hardly stand as it were. Even a slight breeze against his bare bloodied back caused him to wince reflexively. But it didn't matter, this was his lot in life. To suffer and die when his time came. His face was against the post when she came, so he didn't see when Fuzzy Fredda came up to him, carrying a bowl of water and a clean rag.

    "There, there my young Ser…'tis alright, He's gone now. It's over."

    Fredda undid the leather bindings on the whipping pole and wished she could burn them with her gaze…if only she could. She released Fleet who fell to his knees, still not responding to her presence. His writs too were bloodied as he'd tried to force his hands through.

    "Devil take him…" she whispered hotly under her breath regarding their cruel administrator. She silently began to clean fleet's bloodied back, and had to scrub a bit where the blood was caked and had already begun to dry. The boy jerked, but was too exhausted to verbally express his 'discomfort'. "Almost done. Doesn't look so bad…" she commented.

    "You gave them quite a chase.." she ventured with a bit of a chuckle, but the boy was hardly listening. "Well, you've got to get up now…." she said finally.

    The sound of metallic footsteps caught his ear. Then there was the sound of something sharp scraping against the floor. Fleet was able to muster enough strength to look over his shoulder. He felt Fredda get up and scream. She told him to run as she put herself between him and harm's way, her arm raised as if holding up an invisible shield. In front of her, a red haired knight raised its sword. But the Knight's head was at an awkward angle, and it looked like his head was about to fall-off, blood stained the front of his armor. Not even such a grievous wound seemed enough to stop him. Behind the Knight was the bloodied form of a woman lying on the floor. It was Kaili. Fleet recognized her immediately, but was simply too tired and too wounded himself to move...or cry out. The Knight brought down its massive sword upon the matron and cut clean through her and her invisible shield. Fredda stood in place for a moment, her body convulsed, then crumpled to one side. Fleet could only watch in horror. A howling sound in the distance pierced the air and for some reason, the knight hesitated, as it tried to look back for the source.
    In that instant, Fleet mustered every single last bit of strength he could find within himself and rose up like lightning. With his right arm he grasp with desperate ferocity and ripped the dangling head clean off the armored body. The Knight's body also stood there for a moment, headless, before it came crashing down upon itself. Fleet looked down at the red haired head in abject disbelief. It was trying to say something….

    'Jakob'

    With his remaining strength, the urchin boy threw down the disembodied head, and it landed upon the bladed edge of the fallen sword, which split it in twain. The howling sound pierced the darkness once again, this time it was closer. Fleet felt himself losing consciousness as he once again fell to his knees. What was making that sound? He looked toward the entrance of the courtyard, where the Knight had come through, and before he closed his eyes, he thought he saw an animal, bright colored, but it wasn't a dog. He knew this animal. And at the last moment, he remembered.

    It was a Desert Fox.

    For a moment, Fleet opened his eyes, his face frowning. He grumbled a bit, and muttered something about a bad dream, before falling asleep. He didn't realized that the sound he'd heard in his dream had actually occurred in the waking world, and that its source had been closer than he realized.

    Be that as it may, the next day would be spent in preparation to finally depart the abandoned town. Their future was at best…uncertain. gods protect them.

    Tag: Ktala (GM)
    Last edited by greyjedi125, Mar 9, 2013
  7. Trieste Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 10, 2010
    star 4
    [IMG]
    The Mountains, Shodaire, the Tower of Stone
    Castle grounds
    12 days before his wedding

    Lawrence had been unsure what to say to Safia's earlier comment as he had realized it had perhaps not been the best thing to bring up. After all, she had been on the brink of becoming Queen of Mirwyth and now she was not. Perhaps she still desired to be. Or perhaps she still desired him. She seemed to be warming up to him here in the snow, but he could not imagine that such feelings went away overnight. After all, he was still struggling with what he'd done with Illiza. That had been an affair of one night, barely more than that and yet it ate at him. How much more so must such a thing be for one who was once engaged? It would be best to steer the conversation in another direction to ease the process.

    "If we have time, then lead on," Lawrence said with a smile, "This time I think we'll refrain from racing. After all, when moving fast is not the best way to experience the scenery. Lead on, my lady."

    Tag: @JediMasterAnne
  8. Ktala Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 7, 2002
    star 6
    Lorain Ashkey
    Blacksmith Shop - The Deserts of Mirwyth, Near Aqarda, Abandoned Town, Desert Coast - DAY - 18 Days before the Wedding

    Lorain was quiet, as she laid on her makeshift bed, watching as Fleet finally drifted off to sleep, on a cot next to Kaili. She listened to him, staying silent. Even in his dreams, he could find no rest. The various noises he made, made Lorain shudder. What had happened to him, that he knew such horrors at such a young age? Lorain renewed her vow to try her best to keep him safe, as he finally fell into a quiet sleep. Satisfied, Lorain closed her own eyes, and drifted off into an uneasy sleep. Her weapon she kept close to her as she drifted off.

    ---

    She was in the mountains. It was there trip back to visit her mothers family. The air was cool, and off in the distance, she could hear Mangus, her brothers laughter. Her father was there as well, and in the distance she could see the town where her mother would be located. Lorain was busy gathering flowers. The mountainside was covered with them. In the distance, was the lake that they frequently visited. Lorain had learned to swim there. Mangus can up to her, running swiftly, a huge smile on his face. She bent down, to hand Mangus the bouquet of flowers she had collected. With a smile, he grabbed them, and took off down the mountain, heading for where their mother was. Lorain laughed as she watched him run. He was moving so fast, he looked as if he was about to go rolling instead of running. But his steps were sure, and he was soon out of sight.

    Laughing, she turned, to look at her father who was laughing as well, as he waved at the disappearing back of her brother. Lorain started to head towards her father when a shadow fell over her. She turned but was unable to see anything but shadow. She stumbled, and moved to run towards her father. She looked towards him, only to see him looking towards her with a confused look on his face. Then his face seemed to melt, as she saw his tunic change colors. She screamed, when she saw a sword protruding from his belly, as if by magic. She struggled to move towards him, but it was if she was swimming in thick molasses. Invisible hands, seemed to slow her movements, and she could only watch as he slowly fell to the ground.

    Lorain heard a noise then, but at first she didnt recognize it. Then she figured out that it was her, screaming as she tried to make her way to him. Then the landscape changed, and instead of the mountains, she was falling. It was dark now. The air changed from cool to salty. And the ground rolled beneath her feet. She was back on-board the ship, and her wrists were chained once more. The anger and hurt she felt then was back, and her thoughts turned dark, as she only wanted to warp her chains around the necks of each and every pirate she could find. Then suddenly, there was light, and a key. Water suddenly flooded around her she was swimming, and heading towards the light..

    ---

    Lorain bolted upright so fast, it was good that she was laying on the floor. Her weapon was in her hand, as she scanned the area quickly, looking around the room, as she tried to gather herself. She stood, listening quietly around her, but the only things she could hear was Fleet's soft breathing. She looked over at Kaili. She was still breathing, but it was growing shallow. Lorain hated to wake Fleet up, but they needed to get started on locating anything they could find to get out of town fast. Lorain went downstairs, and cooking up a few of the fruits she had left, she began to make another batch of the tea so they would have energy to deal with what needed to be done. She quickly did a change to Kaili's bandages as well. Once that was finished, she took the tea upstairs and woke up Fleet.

    "Here, Fleet." she called gently to him, not wanting to grab him. "Wake up, and drink some of this." She waited until he was awake, as she poured some water in a bowl. Once he was awake, she told him, "Ive a job fer ya." She said with a wink.

    She brought over some sheets she had found. Some she kept in a separate folded stack, the others were next to Fleet. "She pointed to his weapon. 'I wants ya to tear these sheets up into strips for me, about this wide." she stated, holding out her hands to show what size she needed. "Once ya finished that, come find me downstairs. I'll show ya whats next."

    Lorain went back downstairs, and began a massive search of the home. She found some sacks, which would be useful, in case they found anything else. Some she would use to fill up pitchers of water for them to carry with them. In the back part, she found some poles, 3-4 feet in length. She took a few of them as well, and began to stack the supplies she found in a corner of the room.


    She mental compiled a list of things they needed to find. Cash, even the smallest amounts would help them. She started her search for tools within the blacksmiths, but she would look all through the town. She wanted to find a hammer. They would also need to find food, and hopefully, an animal they could use to help carry Kaili, and their supplies. Without that, it would be difficult. Lorain would use some twine she found earlier, to make a small net. If they were lucky, she might be able to catch a bird, or some small animal before they left. That way, they would have something fresh to eat. The pot and kettle she used earlier would also go with them, and a small bit of kindling, so that they could build a fire. If she found another metal pot, she would collect coals from the blacksmith's fire to carry with them. It would be difficult to find wood to burn out in the desert, so she would make some bundles, to use to make tiny fires. It would also need them to keep any wild animals at bay.

    Lorain had done many crossings across the desert with her father, when he was picking up metals and other supplies he used for blacksmithing, and later on with her own weapon works, so she had some idea of somethings that would be useful. But she had always traveled within a caravan. So this was something new to her, to cross the desert alone. But they had no choice. With the noises, she was guessing that the pirates would be coming back to this town. Perhaps it was a staging point. But no mater what was going on, it was dangerous. So they would hunt for supplies now, and tonight, they would leave. She only hoped the trip would not be painful to Kaili, as they moved. Lorain had done all she could for the poor woman. They simply had to leave. Lorain hoped that Fair Groves would be a more hospitable place for both Fleet and herself.







    Tag: @greyjedi125 (GM,)
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  9. Amitarvind Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2013
    12 Days Before the Wedding
    Islands, Mirwyth
    Delmaristead, Harbor – Siren’s Song Tavern

    Kojuro (|) OOC note: Approved to take over this character with Spycoder9 (|)

    “No man is that lucky! You **** cheat!”

    As buzzed as he was, the details of what the sailor said (even the words he had learned to recognize) were fuzzy, but it was clear the man was not convinced by Kojiro's aptitude for the Shoshin, or the beginner's mind. However, after years of drunken fights over Chō-Han (dice), he knew the look of a cheated man when he saw one. He did the mental equivalent of a shrug, and simply stepped aside to let the fool crash into a nearby table.


    He wobbled a little in place, one part trying to get a better hold on his bearings, one part wondering what he did, and one part assessing the silence in the tavern. He correctly assessed in that second or two that this was the silence before the impending storm of a bar brawl, and the decision was to sit down with a solid thump into a chair. A club sailed right over his head as he did so, and Kojiro began to calmly drink again out of his tankard. Every so often, he would shift or move himself just enough to avoid a flying object here, a fist there, and the occasional chair-club.

    Coming as it did from a land of unwashed barbarians, the beer wasn't half bad!


    Tag: @spycoder9, @Splinterthemindseye_
    Last edited by Amitarvind, Mar 11, 2013
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  10. Splinterthemindseye_ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 24, 2012
    star 1
    12 Days Before the Wedding
    Islands, Mirwyth
    Delmaristead, Harbor – Siren’s Song Tavern
    Sanjûrô Kenji


    Kenji’s jaw hurt. Having a chair smash into your head will do that. The state of the bar was suffering due to the brawl. There was not a single chair or table that remained intact, and the tavern keeper himself was fending off all advances towards the tavern’s stock of spirits and ale.

    Fortunately it seemed that everyone was content with fists or various articles of furniture. No one had drawn steel yet. That was good. Kenji had no desire to kill these men or to be killed by them. In its current state the tavern was worse than a battlefield. If lethal weapons became involved, blood would flow quicker than the spilled wine.

    Kenji looked around for his countryman, but was unable to spot him through all the combatants. He made his way towards the last place he had seen Kojiro, dodging or blocking the random blows aimed at him. He was almost there when his legs became tangled in something that had been hurled towards him from the side.

    Kenji’s palms radiated pain as he slammed into the ground. He immediately rolled forward, feeling a couple of sharp snaps as his armor crushed the broken pottery that littered the tavern floor. He was glad that he hadn’t removed his armor yet.

    Back on his feet Kenji turned an eye to the object that had tripped him. He was shocked to find that it was Raymen. The young seaman had been curled into a ball for his impromptu journey and was just now unwinding.
    Kenji gripped the man by his collar and hoisted him up. The young man’s dazed look cleared quickly. Kenji shouted, attempting to be heard over the ruckus.

    “We need go. No trouble with guards I want.”

    A few seconds of confusion followed as Raymen deciphered the broken speech, before understanding dawned on his face. He nodded, quickly agreeing.

    “Our items find you will, I ask. Kojiro I will find.”

    Again Raymen nodded in understanding and turned to disappear in the direction Kenji had come. Now if he could only find Kojiro before they ended up in a gaijin cell.

    Turning back towards where he thought Kojiro might be, Kenji was unprepared for the punch that landed square on his nose. His vision was suddenly full of stars as pain burst forth from his face. The taste of blood was strong and he could no longer breathe from his nose. “Probably broken” was the thought that drifted at the perimeter of his anger and pain.


    Kenji looked for the one responsible, his eyes promising a quick and painful response.

    TAG: @Amitarvind, @spycoder9
  11. Amitarvind Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2013
    12 Days Before the Wedding
    Islands, Mirwyth
    Delmaristead, Harbor – Siren’s Song Tavern
    Shima Kojiro


    He was perfectly fine sitting where he was in the middle of the fracas and drinking. Unfortunately, one particularly nasty tumble sent a sailor rolling into the back legs of his chair. The legs broke, the chair shifted, and suddenly Kojiro was sitting on a chair with legs made from a drunken, groaning sailor on his hands and knees. Very gingerly taking care not to spill his drink, Kojiro stood up from the chair and sauntered over to the bar.

    Somehow, this turned in to slow awkward waltz across the floor as he weaved around the various pugilists, holding his tankard up higher and higher as he gulped. Finally, he bumped into the bar and set the tankard down with enough force that the poor tavern keeper could hear it over the general din. The tavern keeper turned to meet what he thought was a threat, only to be right on time for a face full of beer suds. Kojiro hollered out some of the barbarian words he had managed to learn quite well, while shoving the requisite silver across the bar.

    "More, you b*****d!" were the heavily accented words.

    The barkeep sighed, rolled his eyes, and carried the transaction out while keeping a wary eye for keg raiders.

    Kojiro had just lifted the tankard to his mouth when one of the ruffians in the bar knocked into him solidly enough to splash half the contents down the front of his robes. Without thinking (and without sloshing his drink,) he whipped out a fast hook at the offender, right smack in to Kenji's face. Kojiro gulped, paled, and downed the rest of his drink before any retribution could risk it more.

    TAG: @Splinterthemindseye_, @spycoder9
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  12. JediMasterAnne Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2004
    star 4
    IC: Safia Rolmar
    The Mountains of Mirwyth
    Shodaire, the Tower of Stone
    Grounds—12 days before her wedding

    She smirked as she led the way out the gate and into the woods beyond. “Although I wouldn’t mind the chance to win my book back, racing is probably not an advisable activity outside the castle grounds right now.”With little foot traffic and no need for servants to remove the snows beyond the walls, the snow drifts were deeper, making the horses more prone to stumbling. And besides that, Ser Lawrence had already had one near-miss with a tree today; no need to push his luck in the forest outside.

    TAG: @Trieste
  13. Lukes_Apprentice Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 15, 2008
    star 3
    IC: Gordon Cyrell
    Cyrell, Mountains
    Castle Meeting Room
    15 Days Before the Wedding
    Gordon’s wife came in and he smiled at her and she spoke.
    “My lord husband, I had scouts sent to investigate the approximate size and leader of the army,”In her eyes, it was obvious she was hurt by the next few words that would escape her lips. “One of the three came back alive, and his mouth was. . .” She shuddered. Even her legs seemed to quiver, and it looked as if she was about to fall. Rowan stood as if to hurry to catch her, but she steadied herself.

    “They. . .they muted him. And. . .they had his hands. . .cut away.” Her composure was almost at it’s breaking point. But she had held strong before, she would continue to do so.

    “He has no way to communicate, or even wishes too. But we do know that they wish to continue and wreak havoc across the mountains as they travel.”Helen approached her husband, glancing at Rowan even as she walked. She eyed the guardsmen, as she leaned in and lowered her voice.

    “Villages. . .completely ravaged. No one spared, not even women or children. Much like Harrowmont. Word’s begun to get out amongst the people, and men are wanting to call up arms, while women wish to run to the Capital and bow to their true king.”

    “You must act, before they can continue to cause unrest.,” stated Gordon's wife.

    Gordon’s smile had vanished and fire entered his eyes the anger was so great stopped acting like lord and shoved himself away from table the chair flying feet behind him toppling.

    He was so angry he was barely able to think then he caught himself and breathed.
    Gordon after composing himself said, “My wife, I agree I am riding now for snowy ford and from your report I now know what I am contending with. I want to make these men pay to show them we mean business. I do not want you to be hurt so I want you to travel to the King of the mountains castle to attend the wedding for protection and as a representative of this house. “

    Gordon breathed then moved and said, “Rowan gather your companions, and you may come to the stables by the time you accomplish that task I hope will be able join you.”

    Gordon waited for him to leave and he then spoke to his wife, “Before you leave I want your opinion on whether you believe my son should join me. What do you think?”

    TAG: @spycoder9
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  14. spycoder9 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 23, 2008
    star 4
    12 Days Before the Wedding
    The Great Continent, Across the Eastern Sea
    Eskriglav, The City of Sheep


    Sandy cobblestone paths made up the wide city. Low, flat buildings were everywhere, homes and inns to the some of those traveling through. Great green plains with talk stalks swayed in the breeze all around the city. But perhaps the most unique piece of the land was that sheepmen and their flocks regularly traveled through the town. Tall men with bent backs. Frizzy beards that fell to their knees. Women plump and rosy. Both dressed in grey and beige frocks that were almost as dull as their personalities. Children, if there were any, were naked, and ran squealing down the paths.

    Of course there were many other people journeying through Eskriglav, which sold some of the greatest liquor on the Great Continent. It was positioned between two other great cities, and one of the only main stops for awhile.

    What brought Akhali Forestwalker here was neither of those reasons.

    A calling, perhaps that was it. An urge, a whim that he might be needed here. Mother Nature always communicated in her strange ways, and yet she always managed to get the point across.

    As Akhali came down the path, passing by a small flock of fluffy white sheep and their herder, he would notice the flat stone buildings rising slowly over the stalks. Business seemed to be as usual, with the main hubs of travel being the taverns and inns.

    One of the sheep nipped at his robe as he passed by them.

    A bird flew over, cawing softly.

    The light breeze made the stalks whisper.

    Mother Nature was everywhere.


    TAG: @dreven_Aarkanin
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  15. greyjedi125 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2002
    star 4
    IC:Fleet
    18 Days before the wedding, Desert Coast
    Mirwyth, Abandoned Smithy

    "Here, Fleet."

    The young urchin heard the voice in his sleep, and in his dream, he looked about to see who was calling him.

    "Kaili…?" he murmured sleepily, not quite waking up.

    "Wake up, and drink some of this."

    In his dream, he could not see the voice or the drink being offered. And so, he strained to see better, and as he did so, the Twilight of Dreams faded as his surroundings grew brighter, light poured in and washed the grey away. Fleet shielded his eyes as his consciousness rose up to the waking world.

    "Huh….?"

    The boy squinted and shielded his eyes as he was momentarily disoriented. He looked about and saw the cot he was on, then noticed everything else. Kaili was next to him. "Oh!"

    Fleet turned around and his gaze fell on Lorain. From his vantage point, the large woman looked as tall as a mountain and every bit as strong. Fleet smiled up at the sight of her. " 'Mornin' to ya…" he chimed as he sat up.He accepted the drink she offered and drank it readily. He was indeed thirsty from a long night's sleep. "Thank yu." He said after draining the cup. Fleet didn't immediately get up until Lorain moved to pour some water in a bowl. "I've a job fee ya." she said, with a wink. Fleet stood, but remained a bit hunched over. He smiled back sheepishly as he dashed for the door. "Oh! I'll take the job, but…I'll be right back." He announced, then he disappeared out the chamber door and nearly flew down the stairs. Some moments later, he came back, looking quite relieved.

    "I'm back." He announced. "What job yu got for me?" he inquired with a smile. As he walk towards Lorain, he did a double take, noticing that Kaili had fresh bandages. Fleet smiled a bit sadly at her, but was glad that she at least looked at peace. For his own sake, he didn't dwell on that, but stepped up to Lorain's location.

    Lorain had a stack of folded sheets, which he noticed at once. He looked up and gave her a quizzical look, to which she pointed to his blade weapon in answer. "I wants ya to tear these sheets up into strips for me, about this wide." she stated, holding out her hands to show what size she needed. Fleet nodded in understanding, looking attentive and taking in her instructions.

    "Once ya finished that, come find me downstairs. I'll show ya what's next."

    Fleet offered a mock salute and a smile. "Yes, m'lady!" he added, trying to sound as official as he knew how. Then with a swift motion, he produced his dirk and went to work. So focused was he as he began, he almost didn't notice Lorain as she left the room. He wished to do a good job, so he focused, using the first strip he cut as a guide for the rest. One of the apprentice woodsmiths had shown him that trick.

    About the time he was half way done, he heard Kaili groan a bit. He wasn't sure if it was due to her fever, or pain from her wound, or some other discomfort. Fleet simply went over to her, gave her a bit to drink, as he learned how to do it proper, and stroked her hair until she calmed and settled back to a more restful state. For a moment, he just stared at her, his blue eyes reflecting the kindness she had shown him. Wordlessly, he hugged her and held her for another moment, before finally rising and going back to his task.

    Once he was finished, Fleet was quite proud of his handiwork. The strips were pretty much even, for the most part, and he was able to utilize all of the sheets. The young boy smoothly returned the blade to his side, then folded the strips once over his left arm. He already knew not to bunch them up in one bundle, as that would cause them to tangle. The point was to keep them neat and separated.

    Without wasting another moment, Fleet made his way down the stairs to find Lorain.

    "Lorain! Lor-raaain! I'm finished with the strips!" he called out.

    Fleet was excited at completing this first task and was eager for another. In his mind, the idea of leaving the abandoned town was becoming more of a reality with each passing moment, and that was something he was really looking forward to.

    Tag:Ktala
    Last edited by greyjedi125, Mar 13, 2013
  16. spycoder9 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 23, 2008
    star 4
    19 Days Before the Wedding
    Breezecroft, Isles
    Some Inn, A Boarding Room


    He woke up in bed.

    Sunlight shone straight through the windows. Abott Tuckman’s mind would thrum, a dull ache, as if he was indeed hungover. The world was a swimmy place, with everything dragging by in slow motion. Once his vision had straightened itself out, he would realize he was inside an inn. He had surely been inside many in his life.

    The night. . .it was strange. . .almost like it had completely disappeared from his mind. They had been walking towards an inn. . .going in. . .sitting down at a table. . .ordering drinks, perhaps?. . .there had been drinks, now that much was obvious. But the rest was complete emptiness.

    Sitting near the bed was someone Abott might not of expected. Dressed in common clothes, his regality was still obvious.

    The King looked up from the papers in his hand, and a slight grin filled his face. “Well you finally decided to wake up, didn’t you? Fun night?” He rose from his seat, folding his parchment and placing them in his coat pocket. “Should have known not to send you to Nessa without warning you. Drugged your drink, most likely. She’s already killed off two other men she assumed were replacing her on her ship.” He laughed again, this time more heartily.

    “For some reason though, you are fortunate to survive. Had mine own healer check on you only moments ago. Nessa must’ve misunderstood you were to command many of my people’s trade ships, not just hers.” He walked to the window, staring out it. “I do apologize, Mister Tuckman. She is of a different land. . .and I owe her a great much debt. Not to mention she has more willfulness than a man.”

    Turning back to Abott, he tried to smile once. “I do hope you accept my apology. This instant should prove you have the scurvy needed to survive and thrive in any challenges you might face.”



    Docks


    Cold-Eyes respected her wishes, and had opened his mouth to respond, but it seemed their overseer had turned his attention back. Cold-Eyes immediately looked away from her, acting almost as if he had never said a word.

    The day seemed to continue on as usual. Besides unusual glances by other workers, Gwenn was fairly normal.

    As evening hours drew near, Gwenn would notice, out of the corner of her eyes, blonde hair. Standing off to the side, checking the wooden boards stability on the harbor, was Lukas. He was nonchalantly walking about, acting almost as if didn’t notice her.

    And then, she might’ve heard a soft, yet deep sound coming from him. He was singing.

    “There was bear,
    With hair to there.
    Walked crooked did he,
    No one to care.
    There was a maid,
    With whom he laid
    Strong as the sea,
    Made sure she was paid.”

    It was but a line of the song sung by bards, “A Bear and His Maid”, popular throughout the Isles. It ended in her departure, leaving the bear alone once again. Somewhat of a sad one, truly, but it had such a rapid beat that many taverns enjoyed to dance and shout to it. Lukas met Gwenn’s eyes for the fraction of a second, and his signature smile met his face. But by the twinkle in his eye, it was obvious the words meant more to him than they ever had.

    Without making a sound to her directly, he went on down the docks farther, humming that tune in his strangely enticing voice.


    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto, @Jedi_padawan_leigh
  17. Jedi_padawan_leigh Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 13, 2003
    star 4
    IC: Gwenn Cliffe
    Docks, Breezecroft
     

    Thankfully Cold-eyes respected her wishes, for which Gwenn was grateful. The Overseer ruined any more chances of conversation however when he looked away from the girl he was trying to Woo. Cold-eyes abruptly turned away, acting as if they hadn’t been talking at all. Gwenn wasn’t offended however. It was common place amongst the workers and better than being punished for talking or slacking off on the job. Eventually Gwenn lost herself in her tasks, and was left in relative peace as the day wore on.

    Evening drew near and the sun was starting to set, the activity on the docks thinning out as vessels and workers alike started to leave. The last task of the day was to help load up supplies and provisions on board a ship named the “Fair Wind” Though a bit of a stickler for time keeping, the ships captain was a jovial sort, and regaled the workers with a short story about his travels as they brought the supplies into the hold. As she went to leave the ship, he even tossed her an apple as a sort of payment. Gwenn didn’t complain, she often felt hungry after particularly busy days like this. (And the fruit was still ripe which was a nice change)

    Descending the gangplank off the ship, she stepped back onto the jetty. Turning around, She watched as the “Fair Wind” prepared to leave, listening to the captains words echoing through the early evening air and watching the silhouettes of the deck hands standing out against the rigging as moved about the ship. Letting out a soft sigh, she rolled her shoulders trying to undo the knotted feeling that had formed after hours of moving and lifting.

    It was then she caught sight of someone in the corner of her eye. Turning around, Her grey eyes fell on the form of Lukas not too far away from her. She had not witnessed neither sight nor sound of him all day, but the blonde haired man was just nonchalantly walking about, checking the wooden planks that made up the walkways and jetty’s of the docks. He seemed to be in his own little world as he busied himself. Gwenn took a few more steps towards him, but he didn’t appear to register her presence. It was then she heard the song. Luka’s voice was soft yet deep as he sang. She stood quietly as she listened. Had she heard him sing before? Well, maybe when they were children…

    “There was bear,
    With hair to there.
    Walked crooked did he,
    No one to care.
    There was a maid,
    With whom he laid
    Strong as the sea,
    Made sure she was paid.”


    The lyrics he sounded were familiar to the bastard woman, as well as many others in the isles. It was part of a popular song sung by the bards, “A Bear and His Maid” She had heard it sung in the bloody breeze often enough, where practically the whole room would join in singing and shouting the lyrics energetically while others danced and clapped their hands in time. But their was something about the way Lukas sang it, that gave the popular song a very different feeling, More personal…His voice was strangely enticing and Gwenn felt herself being slowly drawn into the song. Finally Lukas gaze found her form, but his eyes met her own for a fraction of a second but it was enough to notice the twinkle present in those deep green orbs as a smile formed on his lips.

    Gwenn thought he was about to finally say something too her then, but instead he turned and silently started making his own way further down the docks. He started to hum the tune of the “A Bear and his Maid” once more as he walked away, and a slightly bemused look crossed Gwenn’s face as she eyed his retreating form. She wasn’t used to seeing Lukas act this way around her. Unconsciously quirking an eyebrow, She jogged after him, the wooden planks beneath her feet creaking and knocking with each footfall as she caught up with the blonde haired young man. Falling into step with him, she turned her head and looked him in the face

    “Lukas? What brings ye down here? Everythin’ alright?”

    TAG: @spycoder9
  18. Ktala Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 7, 2002
    star 6
    Lorain Ashkey, Blacksmith Shop - 17 Days before wedding
    Near Aqarda, Abandoned Town, Desert Coast

    "Here, Fleet."

    Lorain smiled as she watched as Fleet slowly opened his eyes, struggling to wake up.

    "Kaili…?" he murmured sleepily. Lorain chuckled softly. "Wake up, and drink some of this."

    "Huh….?" Lorain laughed softly as Fleet squinted and shielded his eyes as he was momentarily disoriented. "Oh!" Fleet smiled. "Mornin' to ya…" he chimed as he sat up.He accepted the drink she offered and drank it readily. "Thank yu." He said after draining the cup.

    After quickly drinking the tea she offered him, and then disappearing out of the room for abit, he came back, with a sheepish grin on his face. "I'm back." He announced. "What job yu got for me?" he inquired with a smile. Lorain showed him the sheets, and after she explained what she wanted done with them, he took to task, busily working on the sheets.

    "Once ya finished that, come find me downstairs. I'll show ya what's next." Fleet offered a mock salute and a smile. "Yes, m'lady!" he added with a grin. Then with a swift motion, he produced his dirk and went to work. Lorain disappeared downstairs. Once there, she began a massive search of the place, now that she could see better. She searched around, and managed to find a few loose coins. Not much, but at least it was a start. She collected some more small containers, to carry water with. The pots she had used the night before, she would take with them, along with using one, to carry hot coals so that they would have fire. Wood would be difficult to find in the desert, so they would need to carry their own tender. Candles, oil, the small lantern, some bags she had found, she was steadily making a pile. Suddenly she heard Fleet calling out to her.

    "Lorain! Lor-raaain! I'm finished with the strips!"

    Lorain quickly moved over to where Fleet was, but as she smiled, she put a finger up to her lips. "Aye, thats good Fleet." she stated, in a quiet voice, as she grinned, and then took the strips from him. "Excellent work. But, dont yell. Remembers, we gots company in town. We dont wants them to find us, do we?" she added with a wink. She then, waved her hand. "Come 'er. Got some more work for ya." She then showed him the tiny pile she was steadily adding to. The woods pieces, some more sheets, uncut. A blanket. A small gathering of nuts. Some small metal nails. Whoever had gone through the town had been through.She carefully laid the strips down, against the back of a chair. Hopefully, they would find stuff in other houses. Lorain grabbed a small bag, and handed one to Fleet.

    "We're gonna try all the houses near here. And the stables. We might get lucky. But whatever ya can find, grab it, and get out quick. Anything to eat, weapon, money, flask. Or if ya see something we can barter with. We not gonna spend too much time inside. But we be careful. Not gonna step out too far. Dont want them others to see us." Lorain tied down her hair, and pulled up the wrapping she wore around her neck and face. Still dressed in the pants and tunic she had changed to earlier, nothing on her looked female. She had found a apron, like her old work apron, and that made her feel better. Lorain gave Fleet a nod.

    "Let's get going. Dont wanna spend to much time out. Keep them eyes and ears sharp now, and may the Gods find favor in us!" Lorain told Fleet, as she held up her hand. Tucking her sacks in her belt, she opened the door slowly, and stepped out, listening quietly. Not hearing anything, she signaled for Fleet to follow. She would do the stables last. Right now, they headed for first building nearest them, and as soon as they were inside, she went to work.

    And it seemed that while the Gods were not being plentiful, they were not being totally lax either. Within the next few buildings, they managed to come up with more cash. Fleet found a cache of nuts and berries in one place, that was a welcomed sight indeed. Another building over, Lorain happened to find a hammer off on one of the side streets, hidden in debris. It was bloodstained, and Lorain saw it had a bit of damage, but it was still a good hammer. She wanted a smith's hammer, but she could not afford to be too choosy at this point. once she got back in the blacksmiths, she would carefully wash it, and check it over. Right now, it went tucked into her belt. She kept moving. Fleet got lucky next search. More nuts and even some old meat and tough bread. Something that they would appreciate, once they got moving.

    The last thing that they managed to come across, was on the way back to the blacksmiths, when they started to carefully check the stalls. Soon, Fleet and her heard a strange noise, coming from a far stall on the end. It sounded like something stomping. Not very loud, but still...

    Lorain made Fleet stay back, as she inched forward, her weapon out ready. She got close to the stall, and peeked inside...

    And then suddenly let out a held breath. Giving a wink to Fleet, she reached in, and opened out the door. A few moments later, she led out a mule, attached with a roped harness. Her eyes were shinning, as she led the animal out, giving silent praise to any deities name she could think of, and who was willing to listen. She checked the area, and found a small amount of feed, that the for the animals here as well. She had Fleet grab the feed, as she lead the mule, tightly holding on to its harness, as they headed back into the blacksmith. The mule went with them as well. She was not going to leave it out, to be found by someone else.

    Only when they were back inside the blacksmith's office once more, did Lorain relax. Fleet and she would carefully check out their haul, and began to pack things away as carefully as possible. She also showed Fleet, how to use some of the strips he had made, how to tie them together, in order to make a tiny net. Lorain would try to catch them something, before they left. There were a few birds flying about. Maybe they could get lucky. Especially close to the time they would be leaving. Until they, they had plenty to pack, and now they had a way to carry it. It wasn't much, but it should be enough to keep them alive. They had to add a bit more water for the mule, but as Lorain remembered, most caravans followed the trails, because there were occasional watering places. The mule had most likely traveled that way was well. Lorain was feeling that there was a chance for them now. She was glad she kept one or two of the pitiful vegetables she had found the night before. With luck, when nightfall came, they would be ready to go.


    TAG: @greyjedi125, GM
  19. Trieste Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 10, 2010
    star 4
    IC: Ser Lawrence Kildare
    The Mountains, Shodaire, the Tower of Stone
    Castle grounds
    12 days before his wedding

    The horse that Lawrence rode was used to these snow drifts. It plowed along quite familiarly. Lawrence was not. Sand was much more firm than snow. He was glad that it was a clear day. A sandstorm was a terrible thing. He had no desire to find out what a snowstorm was like. This land was so similar, and so different still. Outside the walls the differences were more evident. He had been in such haste to to get to Shodaire that he had barely taken in the scenery the last few days. He had wanted to get to this moment, to meeting Safia, so badly that he had not been mindful of his surroundings. Now that he was with her he found it more relaxing. Even covered in white, the forests were a deep, thick dark green. He had seen the Dragonwood, but this was a darker green. It was not so lush, not so inviting.

    Yet he was also mindful of his company as well as the scenery. "I suppose in a dozen days it will be your book again anyways, won't it?" Lawrence said as he pulled his horse next to Safia's, "No sense subjecting you to a second defeat before then." He could resist grinning at the verbal poke.

    After a moment he said, "You know, there is so much that is different about here. Not just the scenery...but life in general. You know that I was raised in a much different environment...no that's not the right word. A much different family than you. My sisters did not have the upbringing that most noble girls had. As I mentioned earlier, they had certain freedoms I would imagine you were denied. Ginnifer and Zooey were extensively educated in preparation for rule. Ginnifer much more so than Zooey. Once it was clear that Ginnifer would likely survive to adulthood Zooey's education in the finer arts of rule tapered off by our mother's decision." She never complained, but I wonder if Zooey ever minded. Or if our mother ever thought it was a mistake. An incomplete education made Zooey an idealist. A stubborn one at that. "My other sister, Chelsee..." What should really be said of her? "She...wasn't of much interest to our mother. She was left to her own devices. Given the general permissiveness of the Fair Groves towards the pursuits of Kildare women she studied in other matters. She and I have more in common than my brother and I do. We're probably the only two who can hold a sword properly in the immediate family." And in a knife fight, Chelsee could kill me dead if she had a mind. "Odd as it is, but Landon read more than any of us--at least in a manner directed by one's own pleasure and not the requirements of a tutor. You would probably enjoy his company. He has much to say when someone asks his opinion.

    "This is all a very roundabout way of saying that despite the fact I was raised with sisters, I should ask your pardon if I'm not familiar with the tendencies of noble ladies like yourself. I haven't truly been around them much in my life, save for my Aunt Spectra and Aunt Regina." Though I wouldn't say Regina ever had much love for any of her sister's children. "And your ways may be foreign to my sisters. I hope that you will have the patience to educate me so that I may understand you better and perhaps smooth the way." He smiled. "And perhaps I in turn will have much to explain to you to make our customs less foreign to you. We may seem odd at first, but I know that you will find a place in the Fair Groves."

    And though your hair is flaxen and not sandy, you'll even look the part. A happy coincidence, but one that might in some small measure make it easier for you to be accepted into the clan.

    Tag: @JediMasterAnne
    Ktala likes this.
  20. JediMasterAnne Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2004
    star 4
    IC: Safia Rolmar
    The Mountains of Mirwyth
    Shodaire, the Tower of Stone
    Grounds—12 days before her wedding

    She listened intently, glad to finally hear about his family from him, rather than such unreliable or uninformed sources as Synthia or Leenah. And as he spoke of the likelihood that Safia’s upbringing had been somewhat different from that of the Kildare ladies, she found herself nodding in agreement.

    “You do make a valid point. House Rolmar, like most all of the Mountain houses, is run by men, and the eldest son inherits the title and the power. Daughters can rule if there are no sons, but are mostly useful for…well, making advantageous alliances through marriage. Ladies are mainly meant to run the household, managing servants and ensuring that necessary tasks are fulfilled. Instead of being taught sword-fighting and battle strategy, women are taught to sing and sew. We are not trained to rule, though often the Lady of the House will act as an advisor to her lord husband, as no doubt my mother would if she were alive. But my father did often allow me to observe when he held court, and I was required to do so whenever I was in Valona, so I did receive some education in leadership—though, I will grant you, it is probably nothing to the training your sisters had.

    “But like I told you before, I was not brought up as most ladies are, since I was not brought up by a lady, but by my father and brothers. Father and Maester Wilkins did try to instill some level of delicacy in my behavior, but because their duties did not allow them as much time to work with me as I think they would have liked, I spent more time with my brothers, which probably counteracted their efforts. My Aunt Kalera was brought up a ‘proper’ lady and disapproved of Karridan teaching me how to handle a sword, but Father never discouraged it.”

    Her horse started briefly as some snow dropped off of a nearby tree, and Safia paused long enough to calm her mount before continuing. “As you said, though, I can imagine I have much to learn about life with your family. It may take a little getting used to, but I look forward to the experience.”

    TAG: @Trieste
  21. spycoder9 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 23, 2008
    star 4
    15 Days Before the Wedding
    Valona, The Capital of Mirwyth

    Catwalks


    Matheus could almost her the fervor in his mother’s voice. While maintaining her soft femininity, she also possessed an almost unshakeable confidence. A confidence that both he and his father had strived for their whole lives, and yet hadn’t seemed to achieve, especially in his father's case. Seymour, perhaps he had inherited some of it, but frighteningly so Matheus discovered he was becoming almost more and more like his father. Especially since he had lost Safia. . .

    Perhaps it was just the dinner wine talking. It always made him feel a little lightheaded.

    “But. .” He paused then, lowering his voice as his mother had bid him. “When, Mother? And how? Father, he’ll want to kill them himself. Make it seem as if he has some shred of family honor."

    Matheus watched a servant passed by them, a hefty woman loaded down with jugs of lukewarm water. She acted as if she hadn’t even seen them.

    “I’m just scared, Mother. For Safia. I know she doesn’t love this fox. She couldn't. She loves me.” He sighed.

    “You can just tell by watching her, she was born to be a Queen.”


    TAG: @HanSolo29



    Castle Halls


    “As well as can be in times such as these.” Maela still retained her innocent smile, even if her eyes were clouded. “I never thought times would be as bad as these. All this war talk. . .it scares me.”

    She shook her head then. “Never mind me though. I don’t even know why I’m complaining, considering how lucky I am. Ignore me, Mister Hunter.” She laid a hand on his shoulder as she spoke, smiling only a bit before whirling off and on down the halls, most likely heading to her bedchambers.

    Gavin would notice Maela had left the dining doors slightly ajar, and just by glancing in, he might see in the open dining area the King on his side of the table.

    The King was murmuring to his other son, Seymour, who was seated beside him. Neither one was eating. Except for them the room was empty.

    “It’s a heavy undertaking. . .”

    “But what if I should fail. . .”

    “Rather simple. . .make sure she doesn’t intervene. . .”

    And then the King noticed Gavin. He immediately stopped talking to his son, rising from his chair and beckoning for the man to come in.

    “Hunter, nice to see you were finally able to join me. I do believe I asked you to be here before dinner.”

    When, in fact, he hadn’t.


    TAG: @NickOfTime
  22. Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 5
    Abott Tuckman
    Inn, Shady Inn. . .of the Isles

    Who turned on the sun? It was a valid thing to wonder in such a circumstance, but surely it had to be a lamp. He hadn't imbibed that much had he? Then with great reluctance and much slurring of vission, yes it is the easy man to slur his words but it takes a true master to slur his vision properly. Tuckman was a little surprised he had mastered it while on a business meal, one normally limits pleasure in room of business for such things and does the former later. Still it was the sun, his head was two sizes too big, and he felt an involuntary need to weep without tears. Did someone ask for a cloudless day? Not he, not now and not ever. Bad for sailing and the price of water always went up.

    The part of it all though? Was not the headache, nor the messed up vision, or even the knowledge that it would pass painfully for quite a while, no what bothered him was such revelry was rarely partaken alone. After all without a woman getting wetter then the sea with you what was the point? And if she became a master all the better if you wake first and leave, but if you wake alone. . .and don't remember?!? Oh, there was a special torture hidden there somewhere, he knew because he felt like he was starting to suffer from it.

    Then to his horror he spotted someone, nice clothes, but not fitting for a woman. He may not look good but he was far too young, he still had prospects! Oh, unmittigated horror what has happened! . . .Oh, it's the scabbord. . . . Well at least there will be perks, like the steel had. Still. As the man talked he felt he was suddenly very thirsty for water. Something without masking flavors.

    Then of course the jewel encrusted scabbord seemed to remark about his own deception, and scurvy. Ugh, did he really look that bad? Maybe he should of listened to his mother and wore a broader rimmed hat. . .too late now. "Whatever, I shall when my point is made, first one, prove the way, then it shall blossem as your ports are busy once more and your war of whatever can go it's merry way. Now unless you wish to see more of each other then we already have, pass my hat. I feel naked without it, not to mention you already thrust another man on me." Sitting up he tossed aside the sheets, "Don't expect me to pay for a man coming to my chamber. I have not before and shall not begin now! Maybe a woman once or twice, I was young and the trade was good then, how they looked worse the next day i still attest to have nothing to do with. Have you seen my boots? I know I had boots when I came here."

    TAG: @spycoder9
    Jedi_padawan_leigh and Trieste like this.
  23. Trieste Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 10, 2010
    star 4
    IC: Ser Lawrence Kildare
    The Mountains, Shodaire, the Tower of Stone
    Castle grounds
    12 days before his wedding

    "You may get along a little better than I thought. We know that are something of an oddity in Mirwyth," Lawrence said, "and do not expect that other houses would allow their mothers and daughters to rule." Though I've been to plenty in the Desert that could be better off for it. Fathers may ride to battle, but mothers often rule the castle and understand the domestic concerns that occupy the minds of the people who work the land. "I would not say that my sisters had a...masculine education, though Chelsee's would have come closest to one. It will be odd for Ginnifer and Zooey to meet a woman who can handle a sword like Chelsee. I think we all thought she was the only one in all the land."

    The whole thing was quite odd. Lawrence was realizing that Safia might find more in common with Chelsee than with his other sisters. The moment that his youngest sister found out that the mountain princess could wield a sword, Chelsee would probably go wide eyed, half from the realization that she would have an acceptable sparring partner (men were not so keen on battling a lady and Lawrence had been one of the few to indulge her) and half from the fact that she would not be so alone. Chelsee was so very unlike her sisters or Landon that she had never struck Lawrence as very happy. It was even odd for him to be her companion. A promising young squire was not supposed to consort with his sisters, even one who knew her swordsmanship.

    Ginnifer he knew would accept Safia as a member of the family. That was her way. But he had expected to find another Zooey, a maiden of traditional virtues (albeit less outspoken about them than his sister) who would have interests so different from his own. Safia Rolmar was proving to be something of a surprise with her talk of sparring with her brothers.

    But is this what I wanted to marry? Lawrence asked himself suddenly. No, he'd never wanted to marry at all. He was only doing this for Ginnifer, because she had asked him. But he was a man. He had dreamed of women, of having a wife. And he had to admit that Safia was not the woman of his dreams. And he also had to admit that one's dreams were not always the best thing for you. After all, Illiza, she had been like something out of a dream. A dream of fire and heat...and he had not found that he had liked it when it was over.

    Lawrence looked to Safia. No, there was enough here. And given time there could be more. Much more.

    "It suddenly strikes me that the bravery of women is different from that of men," Lawrence said, "A man takes a woman to his home, away from all she has known, even if it is just across the road in a village or across long distances like you and I will soon travel. She is expected to integrate into his family, likely never to see hers again, or to be to that family what she once was. I realize that men are not supposed to be too fond of the hearth, but I don't know what my life would be like if I were never to see Kalkheim again." He gestured to the forest around them. "Or what your life would be like if you were to never see this."

    Tag: @JediMasterAnne
  24. Jan607 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 11, 2013
    GM Approved!

    Name: The Night Bird/ Henrik Bille
    Age: Early 40s
    Gender: Male

    Appearance:


    [IMG]





    Tall (6’4”, about 1.90 meters) and slender like the willow tree, Henrik is a men in his early mid-life, his face bares the marks of age, along with multitude of scars, with a peculiar mix of pride and indifference. His strong nose was visibly broken at least one time, no doubt a sign that the man was experienced brawler, the stench of alcohol emanating off of him proves to anyone unlucky enough to enter the range of his breath that the man enjoys frequent visits to bars and pubs. His chest is just as scarred over as his face. Slashes and bite marks dot his skin, the marks composing a grotesque painting, map of his struggles forged in violence. His look would be an ultimate visage of a bandit, a man who knew only violence and murder in his life except for one feature, the eyes of the slender man. The gray sober eyes were such a strong contradiction to his tanned and slightly yellowed skin that they stood out clearly among his abused face. They watched his surroundings in wary expectation of another tragedy. He spoke little of his past but his eyes spoke more of it than words ever could. There was a constant presence of sadness in them, as if he was ready to cry at moment’s notice. Yet, they had a gentle gleam of light inside them, sign that the man was not completely corrupted. Through the pain and violence, beneath all that tar there still was a spark of hope for his life.
    He was mostly seen in his leather tabard and heavy woolen cloak, underneath the tabard he wore clothing composed of tanned skins and furs. Everything was stitched by hand, no doubt his own. He had in his pack a suit of armor, the only one he had. Slightly rusted coat of scale mail attached to a chain mail shirt and robes beneath, the man took as much care of it as he could, however, in the situations he has found himself, and with the budget he had, that was often difficult. One could already wonder what he had to do, and how long save, to get a hold of any armor. On his back there was an ever-present claymore, a family heirloom, sheathed carefully and well-polished, although rarely used. Next to the claymore there was a hand-made yew longbow and quiver of arrows of different colors, his preferred weapon of choice. On his belt hanged a multitude of hunting and bowie knives, metal as well as carved out of animal bones. Across his chest there is a leather satchel for miscellaneous needs.
    He also had a tendency of appearing in a hand-carved wooden mask, mostly one portraying a bird, whenever he needed to mask his identity.

    Homeland: The Mountains
    King: None, freelancer bandit waiting for employment
    Occupation: Hunter/Bandit/Outlaw
    Family Banner: None
    House Words: Nature’s blessings


    Biography: Henrik was born to a simple highlander family in the Mountains, near the city of Harrowmont. He received no formal education in his life, what knowledge he had consisted of his father teaching him how to read and write, an echo of the more noble days of his family, and lessons in arts of a hunter and swordsman. Although an adept fencer, gift from the painful lessons of his strict father, Henrik proved to be much more fond of a longbow and traps, using cunning to engage his prey, during hunts only on animals, not men, as a child, effectively and without the mess of close combat. Taught skinning and skills of handling knives at young age and quickly volunteered as an aid to his father during many hunts, Henrik quickly polished the art of hunting and tracking, with it achieving many other skills, including woodcarving and crafting “petty”, as called by his father, trinkets. Although Henrik always enjoyed the more peaceful activities, like the carving or music, it was strictly discouraged by his father and the young boy soon abandoned the interests with the painful regret, although continued them in much of his free time behind the father’s watchful eyes.
    Henrik continued the harsh existence in the mountains for much of his childhood, except the sporadic visits in the local city of Harrowmont it was rather uneventful. Making life on the game in the unforgiving climate was difficult as well, by the time Henrik was a teenager, his family moved farther southeast, settling down near a river halfway between the Dragonwoods and the Mountains. As Henrik’s age increased, so did the number of conflicts and scrapes he had with his strict father, soon in one rebellious event, he moved out of the household at age of seventeen, settling in his own hut at the edge of the forest, by the same river his family had a hut on further downstream.
    He continued the blissful life of a lone hunter, never again coming back to his father’s homestead, until he was in his middle twenties. It was at this age that he met his wife, Inaya, during one of the trips to Caraba. She wasn’t anyone wealthy or held importance in the city, she was a daughter of a fruit merchant, when Henrik saw her she was performing a dance in her playfulness with street urchins, he could not help but open his mouth and gaze at her awe-struck by her beauty. He did not ask her father for her hand, or took great effort into proving he was worth for her, he was straight to the point and effective, as he tended to be. He charmed her, simply and completely, and whisked her away to his hut where they married in solitude, before nature as the witness. And their existence continued in further bliss, with frequent visits to Caraba, with donations and gifts to the urchins there Henrik met through Inaya, her kindness spilling into Henrik’s life, life that until then lacked it so much. Inaya bore him two children, son Jozef and daughter Anasha, and they lived undisturbed until their middle thirties, when Inaya got pregnant with third child.
    Henrik went out on a hunt, he hunted alone without the help of his son, he promised himself to not force him if the boy didn’t wished to go, unlike Henrik’s father. While he was away, their hut was attacked by a band of one of the local bandits, unnoticed until now. The raiders came upon the unsuspecting family swiftly and brutally, in the strike the whole of Henrik’s family was killed, his pregnant wife and two children. What little valuables they held to was taken as well. When Henrik came upon the sight he cried and wailed into the night like a wounded animal. It was sunrise that stopped him and he looked upon the rising sun in the red sky and knew what had to be done. He followed the tracks of the bandits and came silently upon their camp. He exacted his revenge, but not without the price. The guilt of the murder was forever burned into his heart, the sights of the bodies of bandits and his family haunted him each night, each time he tried to dream.
    Ever since that night Henrik succumbed into a life of violence or depravity, mostly drunk and whoring when in the cities, Henrik often ambushes lone travelers and small caravans as an outlaw, a bandit with little mercy felt for those who happen to be his targets. However, as much his deeds speak otherwise, his corruption is not complete, although his hut is rather run-down and uncared for, much of his money is spend as food and donations for the street-urchins his wife cared for so deeply. And true reason for his whoring and drinking is that in the alcohol he is trying to drunk his sorrow, and what he can’t, he tries to forget about in the simple nights of brief pleasure. But in the end, he is unable to, in his mind he is no more human, he is so much more beneath it, his guilt forever branded on his being, when he looks at his reflection he only sees a murdered and a bandit, so he acts like one as society expects him to, society and people he despises so much now.
    It’s been always ten years since his family’s murder and Henrik is a bitter, hurt being, he looks upon the war and spits in disgust, thinking only how he can benefit from it but with hopes of staying out of the politics.
    Trieste likes this.
  25. JediMasterAnne Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2004
    star 4
    IC: Safia Rolmar
    The Mountains of Mirwyth
    Shodaire, the Tower of Stone
    Grounds—12 days before her wedding

    “That…is another good point.” With Mirwyth teetering on the edge of open war, and Capitalmen still wreacking havoc in her homeland, the idea might have floated through her thoughts over the last week or so that once she left Shodaire, she might never see the Tower or her family ever again, but it wasn’t a thought she cared to linger on. She was not ignorant to the cruelties of a land at war, but she feared that if she even accepted the possibility of permanently losing her family, she might not be able to muster the nerve to leave when the time came. “I expect it will be difficult to leave, and it will take time for me to adjust to life in the desert, but I think I can handle it.”

    TAG: @Trieste
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