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Raptor last won the day on June 4 2011

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About Raptor

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    I am the Raptor.
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  1. It was often said that blizzards were the product of a Wispmother’s misery, and it would seem that their hunting grounds were perfect for unwitting prey. The child – who so desperately called for his mother – was the perfect prize. “Of course I came.” She soothes, her voice like honey, sweet and captivating. She flits then, in and out of the snow, ethereal as she is, wrapping her icy fingers around the boy’s thin arm, leaving in her wake a circle of blue flesh. With it she imparts a deep sense of foreboding to the boy-child, to impress upon him the gravity of his situation. She leaves him little time to collect himself, however, and screeches suddenly as she dives towards him. “But you should stay, stay with us.” She croons, whisps of her white hair nearly tangible with as close as she is. The boys reaction to her closeness as the ghostly nose nearly presses against his would determine his fate.
  2. “The building to the left is also ours, yes. Freshly erected by the fine craftsmen that have come to take refuge here, for they are as welcome as the children. We have seen quite a few fleeing from the civil war, of course.” She sighs, waving a hand as though to rid the air of an unpleasant topic. Furthermore, her attention was rapt on the clergy as they sat. “Ah, of course there is room for everyone. The table is quite large.” True to her word, the men sat easily and only took half the table. The children filed in as well, taking seats among them as they wiggled their clean selves in their designated spots. It would seem that their guests disrupted their schedule none, despite Susan’s non-vocal protests. After things have been set about, Susan disappears out the front door, presumably to head back to the home she has been adopted out to. She returned from time to time to help. Derrick, the oldest of the boys sits beside one of the abbey-dwellers and peers at him or her curiously, before motioning to Daniella, who rose to get the highchair for Caitlyn, the sixth month old babbling adorably as she is placed into the highchair, her chubby arms waving as Daniella disappears into the kitchen to return with a bottle, offering it to her as Caitlyn gurgles. “Now then, bowls please.” Dhizzandra states as Lucy waves her spoon at one of the clergy as she passes her bowl down to be filled with the stew that has been bubbling in the pot. “How come yer all…uhm. Wearing weird stuff?” She asks, no ill intent in her question, but rather childhood curiosity. The other children, those old enough to have the same pressing thoughts seem to lean in to hear the answer. “That’s hardly polite.” The dryad chastises, but not harshly. Instead she follows the motions of filling bowls and passing them about. The children seem to be used to this style of eating as they pass the bowls down to the end, patiently waiting their own. Derrick assists in passing out the bread – it is a rich, barley bread that is dense and pleasant to the touch, and he sets the plate with it down in front of their guests. Lucy doesn’t wait an answer as she dips her spoon into the steaming bowl of stew before raising a bit to her mouth to blow on it so that it doesn’t scald her. “Ah!” Dhizzandra protests, offering a creasing of her gentle brow. “You know, first we pray.” Lucy lets the spoon plop back down into the bowl with the briefest of pouts, quickly wiped from her visage as she reaches for the stranger next to her, and places a hand ‘pon Caitlyn. Bowing her head, Dhizzandra reaches for Yshmael’s hand, her own warm and inviting as it takes ahold. There is a gentle strength that promises brutality should she be crossed, however. "Earth, Terra, Gaia! Mother of All, Giver of Gifts and of Life, I offer all of my prayers to thee, my respect and gratitude, and may this be a conscious oath to protect you and to honor you as I recognize the great need for your healing. May your fields be rich and your soil fertile, and may they be sown and reaped with care. May your mountains attest to your splendor and strength and your valleys hum with the lullaby of your receptive embrace. May your oceans, waters, rivers, and glaciers be pure and nourishing as the life-blood of the planet. May your air be clean and free of toxins that all may breathe deeply and fully the great life-force. May your turning invoke an understanding of all cyclical things in nature; of growth and decay, of planting and harvest, of karmic cycles and that as we give, so do we receive. May your children learn to care for you and love you, and to teach their children the same. You are the Earth, and I am your child.” Once it was finished, there was a gentle murmur of agreement among the children as they reclaimed their hands and began to dig into their meals with a savagery that only children can manage, but not so that it was impolite. "Please, see your stomachs filled." Dhizzandra moves to take her place at the head of the table, crossing one leg over the other at the knee as her golden gaze twinkles at them.
  3. It was somber, the mood that enveloped those that trudged through the knee-deep snow. Though a mother’s hope was greater now that help had arrived, worry and dread still made her limbs heavy and sluggish as she plods through. “Do not fret. I am sure he is safe.” Priscilla offers tender words of encouragement, though she is only rewarded a weak smile and a panic held in the mother’s gaze. The Matron knew there would be no assuaging her until her arms were wrapped firmly around the little life she helped bring into the world. Priscilla let her attention waiver from the woman, instead falling over the entirety of the village that were out hunting, as well as the group of personal guards she had brought as well. They easily numbered fifty strong, all searching for a singular soul. “He’s always such a good boy, I swear.” The sniffle to her left snaps her attention back. “I’m sure he is.” Lips curl upwards, “All children are, even when they aren’t.” It reminded her of Proteus’ days of youth, the terror he often inflicted on those around him, the sheer force of will it took for him to gain control of his powers. It amused her to no end, and yet brought her grey hairs just the same. Meanwhile, the boys cries and demands, his loneliness, and his solitary figure drew the attention of several things in the snow. Desperate creatures out for flesh and blood alike speak trouble on the winds. IF one listened with a keen enough ear, they might hear the telltale wail of the oncoming storm and what rode upon the torrent of snow that sought to bury them, the thin, non-corporeal figure floating in the snow, near invisible. The Wispmother a thing of nightmares. Her ghostly appearance often spelled doom for those who were caught in her sights. Much like a banshee, she fed on the desperation of the souls of the lost and damned. She weaves in and out of the weather, invisible to any except the most perceptive. Her wailing call ends short, as she comes nearer and nearer, circling her would-be prey like a vulture as icy fingertips caress the air. "Stay with ussssssss...." The voices, sweet and soothing carries over the wind. It's soft and gentle, inviting and comforting - it takes on the voice of the boys' mother, knowing that the child will be hard pressed to resis the familiarity. "Stay here with us." She chimes again, the blizzard swirling a tad harsher.
  4. There is comfort in knowing that the first lesson is the most difficult to grasp, that even the High Lord himself struggled with it. Shanna’s determination seemed unwavering before, but only grew until it hardened into something akin to a diamond. Her fingertips itch across the wood of the table, before resting finally at the edge as she hovers over the page, her breath seemingly held for a long moment as she scours the text for some hidden clue. “The second understanding seems far simpler than the first. Magic is…simply your will versus the reality around you, in my experience, anyway. Though I’ll admit a lot of my magic goes awry, no matter how easy or difficult the spell. There are always backlashes.” She sighs then. Perhaps her will wasn’t strong enough to justify the magic she desperately yearned for. Perhaps she wasn’t strong enough to try and bring an end to the ravages of the Whispernight. What if her will simply wasn’t enough? The thought was daunting, to say the least, but Shanna’s well of positivity never seemed to run dry – and this display of self-doubt only lasted but a moment before her cheery demeanor replaced any clouds that might have collected. “The magic works, though. Most of the time.” She muses, lost in thought before returning to the lesson at hand. Hazel eyes take in the flame that is produced, and she smiles softly at it. She would not dare try to ply her trade in such a remarkable room, fear of what might happen was too great, and the potential damage to the books and works of art was simply a risk she would not take. Not when she had been granted so much trust as to even be allowed in. “I suppose then, the question should be ask as to what qualifies as simple magic? Is it incantations, evocations? What about conjuration, alteration? Changing of one’s appearance?” Shanna muses for a moment, before grimacing. “I’m sorry, that probably sounded silly, and rambly.” She sighs, a soft expulsion between her lips before she watches the pages turn by his hand. His final question catches her by surprise, and Shanna’s brow furrows as she carefully picks through her brain for an answer. Was she ready to learn arts that may be beyond her? What if her magic went haywire as it oft did? What about that naggling little voice that sometimes cropped up in her mind? Would she ever truly be ready, and what did it even mean to be ready? She believed herself to be, was that not enough? “I want to learn.” She says carefully, “If I can’t learn, then everything I’ve done has been for nothing.”
  5. “It’s alright. We’re all prone to outbursts from time to time.” And so Shanna forgives, because forgiving is what she does – it leaves her with no festering wounds or fetid grudges that many hold onto for far too long. If she didn’t forgive people their slights, who would? Secondly, she pauses to consider Ewyers words and his own fears, the gentle rush of air that escapes his lungs as he professes them to their trio. Her gaze softens, sympathy pouring out of it as a hand reaches out to gently grasp his shoulder. “I am sorry.” It is sincerity in the purest of forms, for Shanna knows all too well the pain caused by the loss of home, by those close rendered unto nothingness. She knows the screams, the desperate pleas for help, she knows the smell of burning flesh, the thunder of horses as they ride down on those that would seek to flee. She understands the pain of betrayal, the sharp knife in the back that twists and turns, each pass more painful than the last, oh how she knows… How she wishes she didn’t. “We will try to make this quick, then, so that no one will have to endure more than necessary.” It is a promise, even as her attention returns to Evelynn and her comments about the creature crying for help. Shanna gazes upon it with a decided scowl, brows furrowing as though contemplating the weight of their actions against the multitude of people trapped within a single form. Her head shakes then, determining that the method of action required to separate them simply isn’t feasible. “Killl them….eat the fleshies…” One of the oncoming voices echoes, its brethren choosing to follow, one of the eyes swivels backwards and up, even as the mouth supposedly attached to it gapes and closes as though to protest, but alas, no voice comes from the rotten flesh it’s stuck within. “EAT THE FLESHIES!” It is louder now, a dull, thunderous roar that is echoed by all but one, the creature so corrupt and indulgent in the dark arts can only obey the most powerful of minds they were afforded to keep. Shanna closes one eye, before reopening it as she peers briefly at her companions. “I’m afraid Sir Ewyer is correct in that the best we can do is offer the creature a quick death.” She murmurs. “And be satisfied knowing that we did not leave them to suffer longer than necessary.” It is without a doubt the worst part of the job, however, and there is not a single iota of doubt in Shanna’s mind that those responsible will pay dearly for their transgressions. As Ewyer advances upon the creature, a wordless scream punctuates the air and sends a shiver down the mages’ spine. It tingles there, at the back of her neck like an omen of things to come. “Let’s move ahead, while Sir Ewyer takes care of this.” She says loud enough for Ewyer to overhear, despite the creatures incessant wailing. So she begins the trek around the nearby house, leaving Ewyer (And her faith that he will become the victor) behind, and hopes that Evelynn will follow as they continue their passage towards those that are to blame. Smoke and ash rains down upon them, and Shanna wrinkles her nose as a thick red scarf is produced to cover her nose and mouth. She offers a similar one to Evelynn. Meanwhile, the creature pays no attention to those that have left, the multitude of its eyes only for Ewyer as he stands before it like a stalwart guardian. It opens three mouths and releases a chorus of screams better left in nightmares, before its shambling and desiccated flesh stumbles forward, the misshapen limbs reaching for Ewyer, seemingly oblivious to the dangers of his sword. It picks up speed, surprisingly quick for an amalgamation with uneven limbs, but it moves like a sleek predator as it shifts to the left, only to sweep right at the last possible moment as it reaches for Ewyer’s armor, as though to tear it from his body. Ahead, Shanna finally hears the drumbeats that signal the ritual that has created all manner of grotesque monsters for them to battle - though they are nearing the end now, Shanna moves to duck behind the wall of a dilapidated home. "Do you have any good area of effect spells?" She asks Evelynn. "Cause I'm thinking a nice fireball, or blizzard in the middle of their ritual site would be perfect, then we could just pick them off one by one without the worry of more monsters."
  6. Raptor

    General chat thread

    All the way to the top.
  7. There is a subtle serenity about snow that mutes the world around it, and those that respect it are hard pressed to find it’s like anywhere in the world. The turbulent storm that they wandered in now, however, was anything but serene. The wind whips through clothes and hair alike, chilling to the bone and freezing even the most stalwart of limbs. Still, the party continues their search in near desperation as dogs and people alike combine their efforts. “We’ll never find him in all this…” One man mutters, waving his hand in the general direction of the snow covered mountains. He knew that each passing moment would bring them closer to failure on finding the boy alive, much less at all. “Quiet!” Another hisses at the man, “Don’t talk like that, she’ll overhear you.” Nearby, the boys mother is wrought with worry and nearly sick with dread as she searches for her beloved child. “Izule!” She cries, shivering as the cold cuts through her winter coat. “IZULE!” Her hands cup her mouth in an effort to be heard over the weather. Behind her, a pale, gloved hand outstretches and places itself on her shoulder. She starts, surprise etching across her visage as it lifts to take in the countenance of the one who has touched her. Turning in full, surprise etches along her features as she immediately drops to a knee. “Majesty…” She whispers in awe, and a touch of fear. To what end is the grand woman before her out in this cold. “Please, rise. We have more important matters to tend to.” It is a gentle, but firm tone that finds Selene rising from her position on the ground, and even as her teeth chatter she dusts the snow from her limbs quickly so as not to suffer wet clothing. “Now, then, we have quite the task before us, hm? As a mother, I can imagine what you’re going through, but have no fear, we will find him.” Priscilla’s unseeing eyes settled on Selene, or assumed to, at least, for they were cloaked behind a white sash. “Ye..yes, Majesty.” Though her own hope was running thin, the arrival of the Mother Queen renewed her strength and warmed her limbs as she trudged forward. “Majesty, surely you don’t need to join us…what if you get sick?” Selene asks. “And how can I rest knowing my own child is out in this, seeking yours?” It is not an accusation, but merely fact. “Have no fear, Izule will be found. We must be diligent, however.” A gentle smile curves along darkened lips.
  8. The young mage finds herself enthralled with the penmanship that adorns the pages – even as her attention is on the words that Zenahriel offers. There is something beautiful and sad about the script that lays there, as though all thoughts are laid bare for the taking. Shanna’s lips curl upwards into a smile – not the usual vapid one she offers, but a genuine, reaches the eyes kind of smile that presents itself to Zenahriel. She finds herself smiling more in the last evening than she has in weeks – in part thanks to the High Lord. For that, she owes him her thanks. “Thank you. For…well, everything this evening. It’s truly been a delight.” With that said, Shanna contemplates the pages once more as her fingertips stroke the table beside the book. “But how? How do we exist simultaneously?” Shanna questions, turning her large gaze on Zenahriel. It is not that she is simple in the mind, but rather, curious as to how one might coexist with a secondary avatar, despite it not being on the the plane of their earthly bodies. “Do we exist as a corporeal creature in Sitra Akhra, or are we simply in spirit? If there are two of us, wouldn’t that create a paradox?” Confusion furrows her brow for the briefest of moments. Why did she had difficulty grasping the concept? She had never struggled in her academic endeavors prior, nor did she find difficulty in understanding all magics known to her. Not that, that meant they worked properly, but the principles were the same and she understood those. Sitra Akhra and the combination of their two selves shouldn’t be difficult. If she couldn’t even comprehend that, how was she to learn the valuable information at her fingertips? Shanna sighs heavily, but is not put out by the challenge – quite the opposite, her resolve hardens and she pauses to search for a chair or stool for the both of them. Scooting them over, she presents it to Zenahriel so that he is not required to stand as she carefully sweeps the hem of her dress to the side so she doesn’t trip on it as she sits. “Or is it simply that we can draw on the powers from Sitra Akhra once we manage to connect with our other selves?”
  9. Blelelelelelele.

    1. L E V I A T H A N

      L E V I A T H A N


  10. The quiet rush of water as it passed her ears was a confusion and concerning factor, and Shanna had no desire to sink beneath the poisonous waves of the marsh as she gasped desperately for air. Dragging it into her ravaged lungs, the young mage flails about in the water for a moment before using her non-punctured appendage to drag herself to the muddy shore. Coughing and spluttering, copious amounts of the filth filled water escapes from her lungs. “Wha…” She manages, even as her fingers grip the mud in desperation as one shaky limb lifts herself from the muck and reeds, bringing herself to a stand atop of jello legs as her hand reaches to tug the sliver out of her shoulder. She barely grunts at the pain, too chilled and disoriented to register it at the moment, nor does she pay mind to the blood that drips from the wound. Shaking the appendage as though to bring life back to listless fingers, Shanna turns her attention to the wreckage that looms behind her and gasps. The wreckage of the airship settles in her mind like a nightmare, the grotesque figurine it has created that protrudes from the marsh all twisted metal and leaking fuel. Shanna can scarcely believe her eyes, and she immediately wades back into the water in search of survivors, for she is not one to sit idly by while others suffer. Unfortunately, she finds none. Only eviscerated bodies that have long been dead before they touched the water, and poor Thomas had washed up on the other side of the marsh. Searching until the chattering of her teeth beckon her to escape the chill of the water, the mouse-like mage pries herself from the muck once more and shambles onto the road. There, she drips pathetically as arms wrap around herself in effort to abate the chill. Rubbing in hopes of regaining circulation, Shanna begins a slow shamble towards…anywhere not here. She was having a hard time thinking, her thoughts like molasses as they churned in her brain. She had agreed to pilot the ship, so had she been the one to crash it? What circumstances would have caused her to resort to such dire necessity? It hurt to consider, and her head throbbed with each passing question until she could no longer see straight and proceeded to lose her lunch upon the ground. Wiping clear her mouth, Shanna turns her hazel gaze to the village in the distance and moves in that direction. Perhaps her employer had escaped as well, Shanna could only hope.
  11. Susan continued to eye them with deep mistrust, her blue eyed gaze staring at them for the longest moment before her arms folded over her chest. She was rightfully wary, with the Enrele on their doorstep, the civil war, and the lack of protection from the Lagrimosan military, the poor girl had more on her plate than she should. Dhizzandra often tried to assuage the fears of the children, but only so much could be done when the world around you was falling apart. Her golden gaze settles on Yshmael, ruby lips curling into a beguiling smile – not intentionally, this is how she is built. “Susan, please set the table to include our guests.” Susan looks momentarily like she might argue, but a gentle urging of Dhizzandra’s emerald hand sets her to her task. With Susan now otherwise occupied, her attention returns fully to Yshmael and his crew, her head inclining towards him ever so slightly. “I am pleased to have the attention of the Church, for surely She gazes on us favorably to have sent you.” The dryad motions to the manor before them, just large enough to house the children within. “Unfortunately I have no room in the main home to house you, but there is barracks style sleeping in the building just to the left of the front door if you would rather stay here than the temple.” She pauses then, golden gaze widening as she peers at Yshmael. “Ah! My manners, I am sorry. I am Dhizzandra, the young woman who greeted you is Susan, and the rest of the children will be milling about tending to their chores.” Her emerald hands move to clasp in front of her, a few tendrils of vine milling about the floor at her feet. “Come, let us share a meal before we discuss business. I’m sure your trip was long and tiring.” Without further discussion of their purpose here, Dhizzandra waves them towards the table, gentle hands guiding them to a large oak table that spanned the entirety of the dining room with bench seating. Susan was there, placing bowls until her arms were empty of them. Twisting, the girl moves to gather cups as the dryad motions them to sit. “Please, rest your feet while we bring dinner.” Vines slither amongst their forms as pitchers of cool water are placed on the table, carted by the very same vines. Finally, Dhizzandra grasps the large bubbling pot and moves it closer, motioning for the nearest bowl as Susan sets three freshly baked batches of rolls on the table. “Remember, if you eat all your dinner, there are cinnamon rolls for dessert.” She winks at Yshmael, a coy smile ‘pon her lips even as one of the children cheers from another room in the house as the patter of feet thunders along the hallway as they rush to wash and seat themselves.
  12. Her chin tilts upwards, even as it shifts to a more pointed extremity, before resuming its rounded, gentle look. This took only the span of a few seconds, as Shanna watches him desecrate his would-be love with his ill-temper. He presses on delicate flesh, rending her unable to speak as she chokes on nothing and everything at once. The dimpling of the flesh is missed, but the desperation of the act is not. Though he releases Isabella with her newest wounds of his love, Shanna has already made her decision. Even as he takes a thundering foot forward, her own figure steps back, hand tightening on the wheel of the ship as though an unspoken threat. She is not moving out of cowardice or fear, but merely to cement the promise of her actions. His face, however tired and sorrowful it may be, sways not her decision, for he only proves that he is man, though perhaps closer to a devil. To present himself as the savior of the very woman he just abused was folly, and Shanna’s golden gaze narrows at him, condemning his actions. Confident in her own abilities, the lithe figured mage stands before the behemoth-armored man and defies him with every ounce of her being. Fingertips caress the wheel, before she lifts one finger from it, as though there was some contemplation that measured the weight of her actions against the question that lingered in the air between them, the pregnant pause giving way before Shanna’s lips curl into another smile. She had obviously missed Isabella’s cue to give the man what he wanted. “Yes…yes it is.” She offers him no response to the rest of his question despite his looming form, before suddenly shoving the entirety of her back against the wheel in defiance of his second question, the airship groaning and creaking as it suddenly nose-dives for the ground. They are not so low that their impact would be anything but disastrous, but are thankfully not at a terminal velocity. At the exact moment her body slings backwards, Shanna’s hand outstretches towards Isabella, magic flicking from her fingertips. It envelopes the woman, wrapping her in the gentlest of barriers – one meant to protect and encase, however, there is a pulse before the power goes wild for the briefest of moments – lashing at everyone in the room before it finally settles in its chaotic nature and resumes it’s peaceful thrum as the airship careens forward. Shanna has no hold on her footing at this time, and instead she grasps desperately at the wheel as she threatens to go ass over tea-kettle, in a manner of speaking. There is rapid beeping on the dashboard, their elevation quickly diminishing as they become closer and closer to the potentially watery grave where the airship may fall. It is obvious that Shanna has little care for her own life, as the magic around Isabella strengthens as her resolve does the same. They crash into the waters of the Coconino marsh, closer to Blairville than not – the hull of the ship giving way to the impact, splintering and crumpling inwards as water rushes onto the bridge and to fill the rooms below. The bow holding them upright before it falls backwards as the end of the ship slaps the surface of the water. The crash is no doubt uncomfortable. The impact throws Shanna from her position and the magic that she held ruptures for the briefest of moments, caressing each person in the room with a tender touch as it tugs away from them their memory of the last twenty four hours. First Shanna finds herself hurtling forward, slamming into the wall just the other side of the bridge door. A cry leaves her throat as a splintered piece wedges itself into her right shoulder – but despite her pain, the bouncing ball that has become Isabella does not lose the power afforded it. As it bounces about, no doubt causing a bit of discomfort to Isabella – it finds itself slipping into the waters that ebb and flow into the ship before being engulfed by the waves as it floats onward beyond reach. It tumbles through the tumultuous waves. Thomas’ sleeping body snatched from the bridge by those same chaotic waves, and Shanna shakes her head from the disorientation of losing both her memories, and the pain that plagues her quickly chilling limbs as water clutches at her like a scorned lover. She finds her footing loosen and suddenly is swept away by the current as she twirls in the water – finding herself drug along the bottom of the marsh. Isabella has no reason to fear, however, as long as Shanna remains conscious her magic will hold. However, Shanna was quickly losing the battle as breath rushed from her lungs as she hit a rock along the bottom. Dizzy and spinning her figure stops as she closes upon stiller waters. Shanna twists, using her one good arm in an attempt to draw herself upwards as her legs kick desperately to find the surface. The murky and disgusting water of the Coconino marsh threatening to overwhelm her senses before she finally breaches like an uncoordinated whale, gasping for air as her bleary eyes seek salvation in the form of a shore.
  13. “I suppose that’s a point I had not considered.” Shanna concedes to Zenahriel’s wisdom, tucking the tidbit in the back of her mind for now as the excitement of drawing near a forbidden book grows. Zenahriel has her rapt attention until he goes for the hidden compartment, and she politely averts her gaze, not wanting to seem too eager to learn the secrets of the well-guarded library. Her gaze returns at the glint of the key in the light, and Shanna peers at it with unveiled curiosity before settling into a comfortable stance as she keeps her hands clasped behind her, lest she forget her manners and ravage the libraries knowledge before she even gets to the book mentioned by her God. Following the High Lord, Shanna lets her gaze wander over the various books, wondering what secrets they might hold before a gasp tears from her throat at the thought of someone setting such precious commodities to the flame. “I hope that they learned their lesson.” Though there was no outward condemnation in her voice, there was a darker implication behind the words. Shanna valued knowledge above most things, if her motivation were any less she would not venture into the wilds as she often did in seek of it. Carefully, Shanna takes the offered book - as though it is made of glass, and immediately finds a table or desk to set it upon. “Thank you.” She offers to the High Lord. “Would you like to read it with me? Or do you already know its contents?” Shanna asks as she opens the pristine pages to the first, she does not sit, her excitement to devour the words on the page too great as she shifts, placing palms on the table as she leans over to mouth the words imprinted there. She is quiet for a few great moments, taking in the first passage, and then the second. “Ah! You’re mentioned in here.” She points carefully, her gloved finger not touching the page as though in fear of smudging the well dried ink that has lain there for some time.
  14. Their arrival was heralded by soft cries of greetings from the town of Dougton. It was not often that they received visitors of such esteem, and they were glad for the supplies they came bearing. Furthermore, their advance towards the small enclosed village that the orphanage had grown into was met with a chorus of giggles and mischievous pitter patter of small feet. The adults working offered suspicious looks to those that entered their humble gates – mistrustful of those who came bearing gifts. What had started as a refuge for children orphaned due to the civil war and various other oddities, had slowly become a small community and refuge for more than just the children. A handful of adults littered the grounds and were working on various projects – small houses that had been hastily built along the rows and in a circular fashion. All work ceased as they approached the stairs that led to their modern day temple, one of them coughed behind a hand as various tools found hands. It was clear that if they were there to cause trouble, trouble they would have. The gentle knock on the door was answered quickly, a young woman of brown hair and matching gaze peers at them with a narrowed look before huffing. “Whatchu want?” She asks gruffly, taking stock of them all before a gentle voice echoes behind her. “Come now, Susan, that’s no way to greet visitors.” The girl scoffs quietly but moves to open the door wider than a fraction of an inch so that they might peer into the warm atmosphere that envelopes the front room. A gentle fire crackles in the fireplace, and soft cushions litter the floor. It was clear the children were in the middle of some kind of lesson, books strewn about here and there. Susan steps back so that they may enter. Before them stands an emerald creature, bold and beautiful as most nymphs were. She is cloaked in a dress made of autumnal leaves that caresses her knees and hides the flesh to her shoulders. Emerald hair accents her head, various leaves and flowers adorning it as though they simply belonged instead of being placed. Her gentle, golden gaze settles on Yshmael – as though taking in the weight of his soul. Barefoot, she pads across the wooden floor and offers a small inclination of her head as a hand motions to guide them in. “Come, I believe the soup is just now finished.” She turns then, expectant in their will to follow as she leads them through the threshold of the kitchen where the warm smell of cinnamon and stew bubble within the pot.
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