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Fantasy The Blue Caravan - Open

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Agent Of Dreams

New Member
Trial By Midnight

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After the events in Cantarta, the caravan and its newest members travel North, hoping to avail itself of the markets in Ironwood, a large town that became a hub of commerce in Northernwood. As they travel north, Spring settles in around the caravan in all its glory. Cliffrock, the hilly country that sits between Northernwood and Bethry, in the arms of a spur of the Racluear, is sparsely populated, but with many roads through it. This was not the caravans first trip north, and the managed to make good time on the roads.

Having driven hard, they stop under the eaves of the most southern reach of the great woods, and decide to spend the remainder of the afternoon in rest by a small river which runs down from the mountains just to the east. The woods are green in all their spring glory. The air is filled with the smell of flowers in bloom, the sounds of bees and other insects in the air, and wild spring time edibles abound. Even the weather was wonderful. The sky was cloudless, and it was a balmy day.

A large cooking fire had been built, and camp had been set up. The members of the caravan could now spend the rest of the afternoon pursuing whatever leisure activity they liked best. A rare treat while on the road, to be sure.

There will be a full moon tonight.​
 

Noam

Member
The caravan had plenty of medicine for now, but it was never too early to start foraging. When the caravan had stopped, Sahak searched the banks of the river for useful plants. Or useful plants that he recognized, anyway. There were many he’d never seen before, and would only be more the further north they went.

He took juniper leaves and berberey and made his way back to the camp, where someone had built a large fire. The young woman—girl? She seemed very young—with silver hair sat beside it.

Sahak wasn’t one for small talk, but he did feel a sense of obligation to learn everyone’s names if he was going to be responsible for their well-being. Especially if this caravan included teenagers, who were notoriously prone to injury. He sat down a few feet away from her and nodded.

“I don’t think we met before setting out.” He hadn’t spent much time talking to the others. Too much to settle at home. “I’m Sahak Ojeda.”

(Tagging Agent Of Dreams Agent Of Dreams )
 

Kassandra

Member
"The bannerman marches with shot in his eyes, way-ving his one true love... But o'er fields of green he grows longing, for more than the palm of his glove!"

By the closest edge of the nearby river adjacent to the caravan, a sight truly worthy of beholding had unfolded. Somber-faced Rega was partially out of uniform, had her precious sword sticking out of the dirt like a mere tent pole, and was singing. Singing something that sounded like it belonged in the mouths of sailors, with a drink swinging to and fro in her hand, but still a jovial tune nonetheless. It was hard not to be in a good mood on a day as gorgeous as today. Even if she was her turn on laundry duty.

Her boots and leggings were on, but the stiff jacket she was usually found wearing laid nearby on a flat rock, bathing in the sunlight to dry. Through it was seldom witnessed, the undershirt had on beneath the uniform was just as brilliantly white. As if she couldn't afford to ever be seen in daylight without straining the eyes of her fellow caravanners.

"A lady-in-waiting met him by the shore, offered him one night of bliss... But then she found him in bed as asleep as could be, giving his dear flag a kiss!"

As she finished her chore and put the rest of the clothes out to dry, Rega took a seat by the rock next to where her jacket rested, and looked into the water below. In her mind, a current of little soldiers took its place as they rushed toward the horizon with blades in hand. Who could know where they were going? All that she knew was that she wasn't joining them.
 
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Paperface

Wood Pulp Connoisseur
When the caravan first halted at the woodland’s edge, Willy immediately resumed the work he’d momentarily halted to join the caravan passing through his hamlet. While he’d never before found himself this far from his home, he only had an eye for the dancing flames of his makeshift mobile forge as his hands busied themselves with encapsulating a chunk of raw, unprocessed ore. Casting his eye down from the forge, he tightened his grip on the chunk in his hands. The raw chunk split with the same ease as cracking a walnut in one’s hands. The impurities in the chunk – having been crushed into dust – slipping through Willy’s fingers. The combined effort of magic and muscle at work to replace a tedious step in the smiting process.

He’d been focusing passionately on his craft until the wind carried a tune to him. The voice too mature to belong to the younger ones among the caravan. The words too unfitting. So far, he’d reasoned there was no need to get properly acquainted with the group just yet. Partially because he was accustomed to a more hermit-like lifestyle, but also because he reasoned the younger ones wouldn’t want an old geezer like himself butting in. This voice belonged to someone with more life experience, however.

Following the sound, he made out the shape of a person near the riverside. Who it was, or whether it was actually a person he couldn’t tell until he closed the distance. Announcing his approach by the tools on his apron clanging against one another before he could speak up. “Well, well… what’s a suit doing singin’ songs like those?” Willy’s voice was gruff, affected by years upon years of pipe smoke. The man gestured towards the reason he’d called the woman a ‘suit’ – the uniform basking in the sunlight – and offered the woman a handshake. “Willy, blacksmith by trade. Yer part of them guards, I trust? A tough task, I wager, with all them young’uns runnin’ amuck.
 

Kassandra

Member
Though not by name, Rega was more than familiar with the gait brushing through the grass. Tools were a dead giveaway, but she took note of their slower, heavier pace as well. An active exercise in alertness from her days as a mere footsoldier. 'Knowing the difference between a friend's footsteps and that of a prowler in the night will save you both effort and spilled blood,' the common mantra warned. Clearly, that blacksmith was coming away from his toiling for some company. And rather than sit down with the younger crowd and let them run abuzz around him, he sought out a far more agreeable alternative. Rega didn't know to think of it as a compliment, or to start looking out for crow's feet.

"Well, clearly you've never seen the men under my command after a dodgy escort. On the off chance a lady or lord found themselves at the business end of a knife, and we weren't there to stop them, it was our heads on the line. Every close call we had, we met to hear the story from those closest to the action, drank to forget it ever happened, and sang our throats so raw we couldn't address our superiors properly." Rega turned with an open smile and met his handshake with something gruffer, clashing their hands into a peak, like the start of an arm wrestling match. A big man like him could handle it, and that mutual strength was far more satisfying to her than a little dainty shake. "I am. Though they're smarter than that. And I've got a good man leadin' me. I'm Rega."
 
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Paperface

Wood Pulp Connoisseur
The woman’s manner of response was an unexpected yet welcome surprise. Prompting him to gladly accept the change from a common handshake to a firm grip. “Heh,” Willy chuckled shortly before bursting out in an unrestrained belly laugh, “yer one o’ the good folk, Rega, was it? Honest, direct, I can see it in yer eyes, lass.

After letting go of Rega’s hand, Willy placed his on the tool belt. Adjusting it back into its proper position around his waist. “And yer right, lass, I haven’t. Not one fer fightin’ and weapons y’ see? Can’t use the darn things, just make ‘em. However…” The man pondered for a moment. Plucking at his sideburns before he once again produced a wide grin. “I wouldn’t mind being there celebratin’ with yer men, I assure y’. Hah!
 

Agent Of Dreams

New Member
Inyri knew she was not much use setting camp up. There were plenty of bigger, stronger people in the caravan that would manage it much better than she. So while others busied with the harder parts of putting camp together, she made herself useful by starting a fire with which to cook with. She had always had a knack for getting a fire going, and though bringing in enough wood to get a decent one started was a harder task then she had anticipated, it was made easier by the fact that the caravan still had a decent stock of wood stashed away from their journey through Cliffrock. Having got the fire to a hot enough temperature to cook with, she got some water from the river and the cauldron on the spit and set about making some food.

Once the water reached a boil, she added meat that had been caught and prepared the day before, some herbs from the store, and some wild edibles she had collected while out getting firewood. All in all, not a bad combination for a camp stew. Raising the cauldron higher on the spit so that the stew would simmer rather than boil, she sat back to let it cook for a while and took a look around.

The sound of singing floated on the air from the direction of the river, though it was not a tune she would have sung herself. She glanced in that direction, and saw it was the white haired female guard doing the singing. The black smith, a large, well built mountain of a man, was approaching the woman, clearly intent on a conversation. She had not had time to introduce herself to many of the people in this caravan, though she was quite eager to do so. She loved meeting new people.

Just then, another person approached, and Inyri gave him a warm smile. “No, I don’t think we did. Things have been kind of hectic since we left Cantarta.” she said. The briefest of frowns crossed her face as she remembered her reason for joining the caravan. A midnight raid by bandits, the flight through the woods which had ended when she stumbled into town the next day. Tired and dirty, she had joined this caravan that was travelling north in the hope that her parents had survived and would continue north as planned.

Her smile returned quickly though, and she hoped Sahak had not noticed the lapse. “I’m making a stew for everyone, if you’re hungry. It’s not quite ready yet though.” She said, inclining her head towards the cauldron. She turned her attention back to the cauldron, and began stirring it counter clockwise. “So, what brings you to the caravan, if you don’t mind me asking?” she went on conversationally.
 
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Kassandra

Member
"Come on now... Big man like you? You can hammer a clump of steel into shape, you can hammer a skull. One thing I never liked about the army, you know. Watching the kids of smiths and butchers show up to basic training with hammers and cleavers they've held all their lives, stained with their own blood, only to watch 'em get traded in for bright, shiny swords. Much as they might like uniformity, those kids never quite forget their old trades." Rega jumped from her seat on the stone and pulled her sword from the earth. Both hands on the hilt, she swung towards the river at a downward angle, then upward, then straight horizontal where all her previous swings would have converged on a target. Perfect form, perfect stance. Only not for a knight. It seemed Rega was talking about herself, and that she had a past as a lumberer. "Never did see that axe again... But what I mean is, I better not see you hiding in the carts if we get robbed. I'll defend your livelihood with my life, Willy, but and I aren't parting ways without me seeing you knock some heads together at least once."

Finished with her demonstration, the sword went back into the dirt. Finding her jacket nice and dry, it went back on, and Rega got to fixing the clasps in the front. "There we are. I smell food. Let's go sit away from everyone else and talk about how skinny their arms are, eh?"
 

Noam

Member
This was why he didn't do small talk. Sooner or later, people asked questions that had no honest and comfortable answer. "Steady pay," Sahak said with a shrug. "I am a healer, but there are plenty of healers in Windnesse, and thank the Goddess very little disease. Here, I am paid for the season no matter how many of you get injured."

After that there was a slightly uncomfortable silence. Conversations, he remembered, were meant to be reciprocal. "And yourself? Why are you traveling?"

The stew smelled good. Cured meat and wild mushrooms, and even what smelled like herbs. Not bad for a night on the road. "I can help with that," he added, gesturing to the pot.
 

Agent Of Dreams

New Member
Inyri cocked her head slightly as she listened to his reason. It made sense, and her eyes widened slightly at the news that he was a healer. She was impressed. Healers were rare and she certainly didn’t expect to meet one in the Caravan. And it brought her a little comfort to know that he was here. It could certainly help in dangerous situations.

The slight pause that followed scarcely bore thinking about in her mind. She could tell he wasn’t one for small talk really. That was ok. She began to smile encouragingly, but stopped when he asked his question in return. She should have known, of course, that was where the conversation would lead in return.

It was her turn to pause, looking down, absentmindedly handing him the ladle to continue stirring the stew. She took the time to try and compose her face to try in an attempt to keep the worry off it. It only took a brief moment to do so, and when she looked up, most of the worry had gone.

She managed a small smile. “There are some people I’m supposed to meet in Ironwood. Since the caravan is heading there, I thought it might be safer to travel in a group.” she replied. There was really no reason to lie to anyone about what had happened. But then again, Sahak probably didn’t want to hear her sob story anyways. She looked down at the stew. “Thank you for helping. It looks like it’s almost ready.” Looking back up, she eyed him more closely. He had curly black hair, and tanned skin. Tan by birth, she thought. He was certainly older then she, but then again, nearly everyone in the caravan was.

“Is this your first time going North? My family has travelled all over the place. I come from a family of Merchants.”
 

Noam

Member
Sahak took the ladle and stirred. "We're already the furthest north that I've ever been. I am just glad it's summer." He'd heard about snow at length ever since Ara had begun going to school, but had no desire to experience it for himself.

"What is it that your family sells?" He hadn't seen any boxes of goods or bolts of fabric in her wagon, but then, he hadn't exactly gone searching. "Something from the North?"
 

Agent Of Dreams

New Member
She nodded, understanding completely. Anything north of Dreywood got incredibly cold in the fall and winter months. And here in Cliffrock, snow became a real problem. ”Northernwood is beautiful in the springtime. I’m glad we could make it in time for the trees to be in bloom. You don’t really see them on the edges of the woods, but deeper in there are trees that bloom with some rather pretty flowers. It’s a shame we had to leave Cantarta so quickly as well. They throw a festival around this time because the hills around the town become covered in wildflowers.”

She shrugged noncommittally in answer to Sahaks next question. ”Well honestly, a little of everything. We travelled quite widely and picked up things from all over. We found that something that might be commonplace in one region would be worth quite a lot more in another. I was always fond of teas myself, and my mother collected fabrics and local trinkets and jewelry.”
 

Huntertabbysandshark3

The lord of randomness and the warp
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Keelester
sitting under the shade of a tree was one of the more unusual members of the caravan, they wore dark greenish gray clothing that seemed like a light sort of armor that would probably blend in very well with the background a hood covering the appearance of their face however one could see their glowing red eyes and long silvery hair flowing out from the hoodie as they casually sharpened a dagger with a whetstone. the figure has stayed away from most of the gathering group presumably to sit alone in a shadowy corner. that was until now looking up at the sky they let out a little sigh.. far far too sunny for them. they then used the sharpened knife to lever into place a piece of blackened glass to a set of glasses. and putten them on essentially having made a set of sunglasses pulling the hoodie back one could finally see what made this person odd. they had a gray skin tone with a slight purple hue and long pointy ears, clearly a dark elf.. or a Drow to be more specific. getting up from their sitting spot the Drow walked over to those preparing the stew.

"Hello fellow caravaneers couldn't help but notice you had some stew here fine day yes? though.. id rather it was a lot less bright this whole sun thing is just an utter pain yes?" they Drow tried to make some small talk with the other group, there lacked any tone that made it clear if they were masculine or feminine because of course elves..
 
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Paperface

Wood Pulp Connoisseur
The counterargument of his new ally made Willy pause; subconsciously resting his hands on the variety of tools hanging from his belt. Creating was all he knew, using his tools to destroy was something he’d never thought about. Or rather, actively avoided thinking about it for the longest time. The weapons he forged were no decorative pieces, but a means to defend oneself. Yet, defending oneself would naturally come at the cost of attacking another. “Heh,” he let out an uneasy chuckle before clearing his throat, “Yer makin’ a solid point there, lass. If yer out here defendin’ my livelihood ‘least I can do is help where I can, I reckon.

There was a short pause before Willy’s grin returned to him. “Heh, besides, y’ don’t think I can hide anywhere, do y’ lass?” He exclaimed, patting his hands onto his gut to draw attention to his physique, “Y’ have my word, lass, I’ll stand by yer side!

The mention of food somewhat derailed the man’s train of thought and he turned his gaze towards the direction of the fire. “Hm, how skinny their- Hah!” He laughed, giving Rega a pat on the back, “I knew ye were going to be right company!

Letting his nose guide him – more so than his poor eyesight – Willy took lead in the direction of the cooking fire. Approaching the fire, Willy could begin to make out the other people already present. Still far younger and continuing to make the man unsure about the correct approach. Yet, this time there was food on the line. Something that gave him a reason to interject without worrying about the difference in ‘life experience’. “Smells mighty fine, lassy,” He opened with, taking a glance at the stew, “Looks good fer somethin’ cooked on the roadside too, I reckon.” The man took another whiff of the bubbling stew before casting his eye on the young lady once more, “Fresh game? I reckon y’ can’t preserve the stuff out in the woods, can y’?
 

Quinverra

Magic Eight Ball
The small tinkling sounds of of small metal like windchime danced in the gentle breeze of Talia's open window of her caravan. The ceiling of the wagon looked much like a garden of dried herbs and spices that she harvested and collected making her small space smell earthy. Talia sat in front of a mirror holding her mauve headscarf that meant more to her than she would ever put to words. Slowly she wrapped the scarf around a pair of horns that jutted from her skull like a pair of unholy spires of bone. Once her horns were covered she stood up from her small stool reaching her slender arm to gather some rosemary for the stew that Inyri was working on. Talia was grateful that Inyri covered for her when her headscarf loosened almost revealing her horns, it made things easier since she found out the truth. Once she got herself together and had the rosemary in her hand she made her way out of her caravan wagon and made her way towards the fire.

"Inyri, thank you for starting the stew," she spoke softly and gently as Talia moved closer to the cooking fire where the cauldron hung from a tripod to which she pulled the three sprigs of rosemary out from her pocket and dropped them in the cauldron. A light gray knit cardigan hung around her shoulders while her long simple brown linen skirts dragged a little behind her. A brown leather corset covered most of her midsection a simple linen apron hung from her hips. There was nothing too flashy with Talia's fashion, in fact she looked like she belonged in a small town tavern.

Her golden eyes glanced back over at Inyri to which she spoke again, "I'll finish this for you, Inyri, I understand you may have other matters to attend to." Talia smelled the various aromas swirled around as the rabbit meat, potatoes, and carrots rolled around the boiling broth. Already she was thinking ahead of after the meal where she would head to a river where she would do the laundry and dishes for the other members of the caravan. She heard the gentleman known as Willy ask about the meal to which she spoke gently, "Rosemary rabbit stew with potatoes, mushrooms, and carrots."
 
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Kassandra

Member
Rega couldn't deny she found Willy's laugh infectious. She must've looked odd to anyone paying her attention as they approched the center of the campsite, trying to push back the smile he so effortlessly brought to her visage. Uneasy as he might've been around the younger ones, she thought he'd do just fine, conversationally. And if that failed, sending compliments to the chef was sure to get some chatter going. Artist-types like that love talking about their craft.

"Great, I'm starved... Good thing we have an actual chef travelling with us. I don't know how long I'd be able to last on nothing but burnt meat," Rega expressed indirectly towards Talia, genuinely, but without any attempt to meet eyes with them. She instead picked a nice patch of ground to stand on and watch as their lunch was prepared. Once Rega was settled, however, she stole a glance at the caravan's youngest merchant. For someone as inexperienced as she, quite a significant amount of their group's funds flowed through her. Even from afar, it was a to keep a watchful eye on her temperament.
 

Agent Of Dreams

New Member
Orien Kiel

Camp having been made and his horse safely paddocked, Orien made his way up river, rod and tackle in hand. He had been travelling for quite some time on dried meats, a circumstance that was all too familiar for him. But with the river nearby and the weather being as gorgeous as it was, he felt that he might have some luck getting some decent food. All he needed was to get a little further up river from the caravan and try his luck with the rod. He was an Oronian boy, to be sure. All the food from four legged animals was just fine in a pinch, but there was nothing better to him than some fresh caught fish.

“I’m coming with,” Kai called out, wiping her hands off onto her apron.

Orien heard Kai call to him, and he paused, looking over his shoulder at her. He would be glad of her company, but she had been helping Wilhelm since they had left Cantarta, and for good reason. He was still having memory trouble, and nothing either of them had tried had made the slightest difference. It was worrying, and Orien hoped that they would be able to do something about it eventually.

He sent her a small smile over his shoulder. “Ok.” he called, and waited for her to catch up.

She returned his smile by quickly organizing a few pouches around her hips, as well as her spear . “Old man!” She called out to Wilhelm, “Ori and I are going for a walk,” and briskly ran to Orien’s side.

Orien had to stop himself from laughing. As always, his friend's lack of verbal respect to her mentor cracked him up. He started forward again as soon as she had reached his side, but just couldn’t keep the grin off his face. “You know, if I ever called Master Isan that, he’d make me do training sessions until I died, and then pay a Necromancer to resurrect me to start all over again.” he said, still fighting his laughter back.

He didn’t take them far up river. Not even out of sight of the camp that had been set up. Just far enough so that the fish in the river wouldn’t be scared away by all the activity going on down river. Casting his line in the current, he settled into the familiar rhythm of river fishing.
 

Aeroden

New Member
Eriol tugged at his braid, his adrenaline fueled body aching for movement. He strained to remain still, lest he frighten the doe away with his sudden movement. He had never been a patient man to begin with, and so had never been a particularly skilled fisher, hunter, or trapper. Not that such skills had ever been essential for him in the first place; his father hunted for sport, a sport that some of his other siblings proved competent enough that he was excused from the family hunting trips quite early on. And try as she might to impart her expertise to him, Visryn also had also bluntly stated his talents lay elsewhere. But he was a good shot, and he was always one to get a clean kill, and so he had shaped up with halfway decent skills after Visryn was done with him.

For someone whose trade lay in blood, he still found the sound of steel on flesh and bone sickening. He found no joy in the hunt, but he did find himself volunteering for the task nowadays. It brought him back to the days of Visryn’s laughter, as she watched him let yet another kill slip by him. Away from the polluting thoughts of other people, deep in the bush with dirt on his hands and face, he felt connected to her. Nonetheless, he preferred to hunt a different way.

He urged the doe, gently, calmly, to come closer.

Come, come. I will not hurt you.” She stepped in, cautious, sniffing for danger, seeming ready to bolt at a moment’s notice. She was small with a slight limp, perhaps still young and not fully grown yet. Perhaps that was why she was separated from her herd. He held out his hand, with a bit of crusty bread from yesterday’s breakfast still there. She sniffed at it, before deciding to trust him and nibbled at the offering.

He lay the hunk of bread on the floor, and shifted to position himself, knife held in his other hand. With his now free hand, he gently pet her, and the doe seemed content and none the wiser. When he had first shown Visryn this was how he preferred to hunt, she had frowned and called it dishonourable.

But honour never fed anyone.

You are awfully sweet. I’m sorry, but we must eat too.” He murmured his apologies into the doe’s ear as he sliced, clean and deep, into the base of her skull. There was no time for reaction, and her death (Eriol hoped) was immediate. He bundled the carcass up, and tossed it over his shoulder, making his way back to the caravan’s cook.

-------​

When he returned, to no one's surprise, quite a gathering had formed around the cooking fire, which was beginning to smell delicious.

Apologies for the delay Talia. I hope my returning with a rather large rabbit is enough compensation?
 

Lucunda Somina

New Member


While the ride north had been fairly sedentary, the halt in progress brought on a wave of activity for her, and the first task she was determined to complete was laundry, especially Wilhelm’s. The trio’s clothing was certainly taken care of in the sense of minimal wear and tear, and while the ashing did help the clothes in regards to the smell, she would no longer tolerate the texture of it; nor allow anyone else to deal with it. She kept busy, and shooed off the employed caretakers, as she was accustomed to doing, and once they were left to their own devices she took to washing, scrubbing, and then hanging their clothes out to dry on the side of the carriage. Ensuring the knot was fastened to the side of their carriage she took a deep breath and closed her eyes for a moment.

Singing in the distance, the timber resonated with her, while the pitch brought her back to her days when the fishermen would sing about their spoils for the day. Her hand absently went to the most weathered cloak, gently clasping the all too familiar texture and releasing after she let out a deep breath and with it, any thoughts that had been plaguing her for the past day. Looking at her surroundings she noted the fishing gear that Orien had in hand and took the opportunity that was presented before her, but it also came with some worry.

“I’m coming with,” she stated to Orien as she wiped her hands over her apron, and when he smiled she returned his gesture by organizing a few pouches around her hips and tieing her apron tighter around her thick, ebony pants that were neatly tucked into her front lacing boots and tucking her forest green, bishoped sleeved linen shirt into the waistline of her pants. Grabbing her spear and lantern she looked into the wagon, “Old man!” She called out to Wilhelm, tucking her spear through the holster on her belt loop as well as through the lantern, “Ori and I are going for a walk,” and briskly ran to Orien’s side as she drew up her hood on her capelet.

“You know, if I ever called Master Isan that, he’d make me do training sessions until I died, and then pay a Necromancer to resurrect me to start all over again.” She wouldn’t hide her grin like he was at this point in time and chuckled softly. “Believe me, I know, and I wouldn’t put it past him,” her eyes glanced over to the group at the campfire and softly bowed her head to them whether or not they took notice, and resting her left hand onto her spear to stabilize it she followed alongside Orien only to nudge him in his side to try and force the laughter out of him.

“Though speaking of him, I wonder if he would be able to help. . “ softly, she murmured out, her tone contemplative as she watched the horizon for anything suspicious before filling one of the many pouches with water from the stream and taking a seat softly near him and beginning to polish her gemstones one-by-one. “Then again, time has a way of resolving everything. . .” Looking up from her mindless task, and to where his line laid bobbing she squinted her eyes and spoke ” Bring it to the right,” and grinned up to him to try and mask the frustration she was currently feeling.
 
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Noam

Member
People began to cluster around the campfire, lured in by the smell of cooking rabbit. Most of them, Sahak couldn't help but notice, were extremely tall. Had there been some sort of height requirement that the caravan leader had neglected to mention to him? He moved aside to make room for the actual cook, and made sure to sit where he could keep the Guard in his line of sight.

Rega Priestley might not have been a Guard with a capital G. She was one of the caravan's guards, and she wore the uniform of the Royal Guard, but in a pristine and ostentatious white instead of the standard colors, which Sahak had never seen before. Then again, he did not have a wealth of experience with the Royal Guard.

The experiences he did have fully justified him not wanting Rega Priestley at his back.

"A fine day," he agreed with Keelester. "For those of us more suited to the sun, anyway." Keelester had worn a deep hood for the whole day, which made no sense in the mild weather. It made more sense when it was removed, revealing a long-haired drow of indeterminate gender. Sahak was less worried about Keelester's gender at the moment and more worried about the possibility that they were going to come down with heatstroke. He'd heard of drow, but had never met one, and had no idea if sensitive vision correlated to sunburn.

He'd never met...whatever Talia was, either. There was probably no good way to ask. "Please stay hydrated," he said to Keelester, and resolved to discretely ask them both if normal human medicines would poison them at the earliest possible opportunity.
 

Kassandra

Member
The lady of the house, whose name I'm afraid I missed in all the hubbub of moving in, took us in like her own. I was afraid her husband's sour mood was directed towards us, but he seemed much happier once we were all sat down around the table. He even offered Circee some candied berries after overhearing her complaints of being homesick. That night, I scolded myself with a smile for assuming such fine people would be mistrusting of outsiders. I thought, no matter what the experiences of others, I knew the truth. There was goodness and purity in Westerwood.

Selma woke me in the middle of the night. Our hosts were in the corner of the room they let us occupy, helping Circee pack her things into an old bag of theirs. 'Horsemen in metal masks are looking for Oronians. They think you're sick,' they explained, and I went to find my gutting knife. Selma heard voices outside, then a yell rang out, and the front door was blown off its hinges. Ser ran to meet them and started yelling, demanding to know who they were. But they didn't answer him. Their leader brushed past, and Ser threw a punch at the side of their head. In no time, they had him in his favorite chair, and the men got to work tying him down. Selma ripped the knife out of my hand and threw it into the dark of the room. I knew why. The strangers were soldiers, and she'd have no manner of heroics from me.

They took us, bound our wrists, and piled me and my family into a dirty shack with a great number of familiar faces. The people we spent weeks with on our way here, our people. We were the last. The leader stepped back inside to face us one last time. 'I need to do this,' she said. It seemed like she was trying to convince herself more than anything, looking back. Then a commotion spewed out from the surrounding woods. We couldn't see them, but her men were fighting someone else. A lit torch was handed to the leader, but she was stopped by a knife through the shoulder. It was a soldier wearing Westernwood colors, who looked utterly mortified after unmasking the leader.

We heard later, after the soldiers rescued us, that the leader was the Head of their Royal Guard. The trial ended with her banishment. Many of us expressed that this wasn't enough, but I suppose it was enough of a sign of good faith that she was punished at all. Her excuse, they said, was she was afraid that we carried the plague to Westerwood. I know not where she is now, but I wish her dead. May Rega Priestley suffer at the hands of the plague she feared so much.
"Well... That's one book I might be better off burning."

The journal Charlize held in her hands was a constant source of nuisance for her. There were others in her collection, with links to the 'Butcher of Westerwood,' or the 'Masked Horseman," but this particular account of an Oronian survivor was the only one she'd seen that referenced her fellow caravanner by name. Worse still, it was connected to more than one person. Stepping out of her wagon for a moment with the book in hand, she watched the golden strands touch both Rega and Sahak. It was a connection even someone without magic could make, but as much as it itched her, Charlize knew that the amount of satisfaction it would bring her to see those strands dissolve was not worth the risk. One was a trained killer, the other was their prime healer. Nothing good would come from one not being there for the other.

She tossed the journal back inside the closed the door to her cart. Charlize often forgot to eat when she was reading, and though her stomach wasn't making demands, it'd been hours. Quietly, she took a seat near the campsite where everyone else was gathered.
 

Huntertabbysandshark3

The lord of randomness and the warp
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Keelester
interaction: Noam Noam
it seemed more people had gathered thanks to the smell of the stew. Keelester simply grinned, apparently, the stew was.. rabbit and some other vegetables, despite his time spent above ground he was yet to encounter a “rabbit“ in food.. or at least make any attempt to actively try anything with it in it. The small hairy creatures never looked the most appetizing to him. “Rabbit? And Rosemary? Hmm interesting id rather have spider and mushroom though the size of the arachnids up here is lacking.” The drow would comment offhandedly staring absentmindedly at the ground for a moment Before turning towards Sahak. “Hmm yes I hoping for a cloudless night much cooler then, and far far easier to see,“ keelester commented cheerfully. One of the few actual advantages of being an elf was that he didn’t actually need to sleep simply spend a few hours in a light meditative trance, meaning at he at most missed four hours of the day. “Don’t worry to much about me I’ll remember to stay hydrated sir“ keelester replied calmly
 

Watur

New Member
"No signs of strange people or creatures...? Check. Slightly magical spring in the distance...? Check."

An armed, muscular man was squatted at the fork of a tree, observing a medium-sized spring. Its waters danced in the light and played a light rhythm overtop the series of rocks leading downstream. There was something about this artesian well that was supernatural, but Carrick could not pin down what. Oh well. Maybe the desert bookworm would have something to say about it.

He leapt off from his perch and started to make his return to the caravan. Scouting had never been Carrick's thing, but damn was he good at it. Taking on chores was not his thing either but the caravan was as good as a home as he had. So, he was hard pressed not to pull his weight as head guard and not let the others have their good fun and rest up while he had a solid look around. By his judgement, it should have been getting time for food. If anything, his sixth sense which revealed to him a congregation at camp confirmed his suspicions.

As he broke the tree line, he could see the group and also smell the savoury scent of the cooking. Carrick let himself pause at the edge of the group and take in a deep breath to relish the meaty fragrance. Talia really outdid herself this time (he wasn't aware of Inyri's hand in the matter).

Much as per his usual, he opted to let the others be served first. In the meantime, he strode closer to the campsite and took a seat next to Charlize as he waited for serving time.
 

Agent Of Dreams

New Member
Inyri Ven

Other members of the caravan began to converge around her, no doubt attracted by the smell of the cooking. One of them, a mountain of a man, complimented the stew, and she looked up at him with a warm smile. ”Why thank you! Though I have to admit, I was just following instructions.” she said. A white haired woman wearing clothing similar to a royal guards outfit sat down, and though she was curious about her, the next to approach caught her attention more thoroughly. He was wearing a hood, though he had drawn it back, revealing pointed ears and a purplish skin tone. She knew him to be a Drow simply from those features alone. But she had never actually seen one before, so his appearance left her momentarily speechless.

She was saved from total embarassment, however, by the reappearance of Talia. Talia, their cook, was also not human. Though Inyri had no idea what exactly she was. Nor, she found, did she care all that much. Talia was a kind soul, she had learned. It was Talia, with the simple suggestion that Inyri start cooking the stew for her while she went off and searched for additional ingredients, who had managed to shake Inyri from her lethargy. It was a small thing, something Talia probably didn’t even realize meant something to Inyri. Only Eriol had tried to talk to her, and she was afraid that she had been… somewhat short with him.

She smiled broadly at the woman, and let her take over for the rest of the stew. ”I hope it’s alright. Mother always said I was pretty good as a camp cook, but I’ve never quite got the hang of proper cooking.” she said.

It was at this moment that someone Inyri actually knew showed up. It was funny, she thought idly. As wide as the world was, it had a strange way of contradicting this fact from time to time. She’d known Eriol for quite a long time, though she had not been too terribly close with the man. And though she had gotten to know his younger brother quite a lot better, she still felt happy that he was here, as though life was trying to tell her that there was still some consistency to it. Though, considering their first encounter, and her moping since then, he probably didn’t realize she felt that way. She resolved to apologize at the earliest convenience. He deserved better than their first, brief, encounter. And she was desperate for anyone who might bring her any comfort. Even if it was just them listening to her cry, as mortifying as that would be for her.

Two more joined the group, one male, one female, both darker skinned, both with red eyes, which marked them as Shahrazadians. There was no mistaking them. Her father had the same features. ”Forgive me for saying, but you two must be from Shahrazad. I only say this because my father is from Shahrazad. He was a guardsman there for the king.”

Any further conversation on this topic was temporarily driven from her mind, however, as she heard the Drow say that he preferred spider and mushroom stew to the rabbit and rosemary. Spider stew! Just the thought of that started a shiver down her spine and tried to bring a gag to her throat. Both of which she attempted very hard to hide. Half successful, she managed not to gag, but the shiver visibly made its way along her spine before she could stop it. A slight redness coloring her cheeks thanks to the involuntary reaction, she asked ”Is...Is that a...um… normal dish for Drow’s?”. More out of politeness than true curiosity. She didn’t want to seem rude, but really. Spiders?!
 

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