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Pasion Pasiva

The Twisted Twig

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Pharmacy by RealNam.deviantart.com on @deviantART

Twisted Twig

Deep in the interior of the Solarium de las Ciencias Flora, inside a comfortably furnished office, Asha-Kwame sits behind her desk flipping through the pages of a massive, leatherbound book. The pages look brittle, and by the measure of her handling of the book, it’s easy to tell that it’s as old as it looks. There’s a frown creasing her perfect, smooth, ebony features, and then, after a moment a click of her pink tongue against her nearly purple-brown lips.

 

The office looks like a hybrid between a study and a shop, with half of the ample space allocated to rows of shelves, upon which hundreds of glass containers house a vast multitude of seeds, seedlings, and fully grown plants, most of which are flowers. It’s not hard to find the Solarium’s director, especially after asking any one of the guards on duty where the Twisted Twig is located.

 

Shortly after coming into the service of the Black Queen, Asha-Kwame was tasked with rebuilding the queen’s collection of rare blooms. This decision, in large part, is due to the woman’s vested interest in flora, and so she readily accepted the responsibility as well as the title of director. However, finding competent and willing adventurers to undertake some of the quests she has written up is proving harder than she imagined.

 

Frustrated, she waits -- hoping today will bring the right adventurer through her office doors.

 

Current Quests

Retrieval of the Black Rose of Umbridge

Specimen Description: It is a rose, completely black, stem and all (a favorite of the queen’s).

Special Properties: For the most part unknown. No one has ever collected an Umbridge Rose yet.

Where can it be found:  On the Isle of Umbridge, off the west coast of Genesaris. They are all over the place.

Quest Rating: 3
Getting to the isle, for one thing, will be difficult. There are few sailors willing to go near the place, seeing as it’s haunted with the ghosts of the dead. People who died unjustly from being cast there because they were thought to carry disease, any kind of sickness, or even from mental cases haunt the place. This happened during the era in which the skinrip plague wrecked the people of Genesaris; if someone said you might have it, you were caught and shipped there to die of starvation or your illness, whichever came first. It is said each rose represents one person who died there.

Post and Thread Requirements:

-Post your intent to take on the quest here, in this thread. An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to get the ball rolling.

-Begin your quest wherever and however you like. Your can write about your character’s journey or you can place them right at the heart of the action. This is the meat of your quest and will require a total of 20 posts.

-Deliver the specimen. After you’ve completed your quest, remember to bring the specimen back to The Twisted Twig and give it to Asha-Kwame. She will give you your reward! An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to end the quest.
 

Retrieval of Snowdin Tree

Specimen Description: A tree with pitch black leaves and snow white branches (a favorite of the queen’s).

Special Properties:  It can cause one to feel very cold, and can sometimes lead to hallucinations. It can also be used to create a powerful fuel. For the most part, many of its properties are still unknown.

Where can it be found: It can be found on the one mile ring of freak snow that surrounds itscold.

Quest Rating: 2
Adventures have to withstand the sudden freezing climate where the trees grow, which can prove very difficult for someone who is unprepared. If they can withstand the temperature, then they should have no problem gathering a sample. The true challenge is keeping the leaves of the tree cold in order to keep them from turning soggy. If the leaves aren’t kept cold, the tree loses its properties.

Post and Thread Requirements:

-Post your intent to take on the quest here, in this thread. An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to get the ball rolling.

-Begin your quest wherever and however you like. Your can write about your character’s journey or you can place them right at the heart of the action. This is the meat of your quest and will require a total of 15 posts.

-Deliver the specimen. After you’ve completed your quest, remember to bring the specimen back to The Twisted Twig and give it to Asha-Kwame. She will give you your reward! An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to end the quest.
 

Retrieval of Sleepy Grasper

Specimen Description: Veins festooned against a wall, with what look like palm fronds for leaves.

Special Properties: It creates a moss byproduct that, smeared over the nose and mouth, allows an air breathing creature to breathe for a few hours (varies depending on how much you breathe, so I don’t want to get more specific than “a few hours”).

Where can it be found: Caverns of Biazo Isle

Quest Rating: 3
A rather dangerous quest, adventures have to take care not to end up being turned into fertilizer. The plant is so-called because it seems inert but if you get close enough to it, it will attack and attempt to digest you. It is capable of producing both a tranquilizer and a paralytic and administering these via contact.

Post and Thread Requirements:

-Post your intent to take on the quest here, in this thread. An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to get the ball rolling.

-Begin your quest wherever and however you like. Your can write about your character’s journey or you can place them right at the heart of the action. This is the meat of your quest and will require a total of 20 posts.

-Deliver the specimen. After you’ve completed your quest, remember to bring the specimen back to The Twisted Twig and give it to Asha-Kwame. She will give you your reward! An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to end the quest.
 

Retrieval of Moon Orchid

Specimen Description: Pale yellow orchid.

Special Properties: It holds the light of the moon and can be used to summon the head goddess of the Nevengarian Pantheon or her familiar.

Where can it be found: The Barony of Pinecrest and the Earldom of Silverwood in the southern part of Nvengaria.

Quest Rating: 2
They grow in the wood rumored to be haunted, when unknown to the people of Nvengaria they are Faerie forests. Weird things happen to those who enter the forest with malice or ill intentions.

Post and Thread Requirements:

-Post your intent to take on the quest here, in this thread. An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to get the ball rolling.

-Begin your quest wherever and however you like. Your can write about your character’s journey or you can place them right at the heart of the action. This is the meat of your quest and will require a total of 15 posts.

-Deliver the specimen. After you’ve completed your quest, remember to bring the specimen back to The Twisted Twig and give it to Asha-Kwame. She will give you your reward! An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to end the quest.
 

Retrieval of River Mushroom

Specimen Description: Small, squat grey mushrooms with some distinctive markings. Locals can help point them out.

Special Properties: Extremely high in essential vitamins- eating one will give the average person their daily values in Vitamin A, B6, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, selenium, potassium, riboflavin, niacin as well as several antioxidants. Each mushroom as the same amount of protein content as a small chicken breast (about 18g-20g). If more than three are eaten, there is an increasing risk of River Cap Poisoning, where the person becomes nauseous, dizzy, develop heart palpitations, auditory hallucinations, sweats, and sometimes vomiting. Extreme overindulgence (6+) can result in life threatening drop in blood pressure.


Where can it be found: Grows along the river of Mezthaluen

Quest Rating: 3
There are animated mangroves, dangerous creatures, and currently a related quest that pertains to a monstrous alligator

Post and Thread Requirements:

-Post your intent to take on the quest here, in this thread. An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to get the ball rolling.

-Begin your quest wherever and however you like. Your can write about your character’s journey or you can place them right at the heart of the action. This is the meat of your quest and will require a total of 20 posts.

-Deliver the specimen. After you’ve completed your quest, remember to bring the specimen back to The Twisted Twig and give it to Asha-Kwame. She will give you your reward! An exchange of 3 posts is all that’s necessary to end the quest.

Edited by Pasion Pasiva

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After giving Bree almost two full hours to stare raptly at the large dome in the center of the solarium, he finally convinced her to move along. 

The rash on her arm was spreading, and he was starting to worry that it was poison Ivy. That may not be particularly dangerous, but it would be impossible to convince his absent-minded sister to not scratch it. 

As they approached the shop, hoping they might have some ointment in store, he considered for the first time in a long time that Bree was not actually his sister. He looked back at her, where she followed close, but always a step behind him. 

The sun was bright through the glass ceiling, so her hood was pulled tightly over her head. It was for the best. Her pupil-less black eyes, pale skin, and extensive facial tattoos tend to make people nervous. To make things much worse, she always insisted on wearing a mask that looked a little too much like a human skull. Fortunately, the hood kept most of these oddities out of sight.

People were smart to be nervous. Bree was dangerous... And, though he’d knock someone else out for saying it, she was at least a little insane.

“Four...four of them. Then they...yeah. That’s how they did it.” She mumbled quietly to herself, figuring out the mysteries of the universe, as usual. As odd as she was, he could not help but love her even more every time he looked at her. 

Traitor only shook his head and pushed open the door to the Twisted Twig. Bree followed him in, and immediately started murmuring about various books and herbs she spotted. He did not know how she knew so much about them, but he did not doubt the endless stream of information that flowed from her pale pink lips.

Traitor waved a friendly hand at the proprietor. “Hello. Have you got anything for a rash? I believe it’s poison ivy... again.”

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On 8/8/2018 at 3:21 PM, Traitor said:

After giving Bree almost two full hours to stare raptly at the large dome in the center of the solarium, he finally convinced her to move along. 

The rash on her arm was spreading, and he was starting to worry that it was poison Ivy. That may not be particularly dangerous, but it would be impossible to convince his absent-minded sister to not scratch it. 

As they approached the shop, hoping they might have some ointment in store, he considered for the first time in a long time that Bree was not actually his sister. He looked back at her, where she followed close, but always a step behind him. 

The sun was bright through the glass ceiling, so her hood was pulled tightly over her head. It was for the best. Her pupil-less black eyes, pale skin, and extensive facial tattoos tend to make people nervous. To make things much worse, she always insisted on wearing a mask that looked a little too much like a human skull. Fortunately, the hood kept most of these oddities out of sight.

People were smart to be nervous. Bree was dangerous... And, though he’d knock someone else out for saying it, she was at least a little insane.

“Four...four of them. Then they...yeah. That’s how they did it.” She mumbled quietly to herself, figuring out the mysteries of the universe, as usual. As odd as she was, he could not help but love her even more every time he looked at her. 

Traitor only shook his head and pushed open the door to the Twisted Twig. Bree followed him in, and immediately started murmuring about various books and herbs she spotted. He did not know how she knew so much about them, but he did not doubt the endless stream of information that flowed from her pale pink lips.

Traitor waved a friendly hand at the proprietor. “Hello. Have you got anything for a rash? I believe it’s poison ivy... again.”

“Poison Ivy?” Asha-Kwame echoed as she finally looked up from her book. She had a quill in hand and was busy sketching out the likeness of a very odd little plant that sat before her in an adorably small terra-cotta planter. It had a straight stem with curling purple leaves. It was crowned by a striped, black and white, orchid-like flower, which seemed to slowly be swaying back and forth. Asha gave one of the flower’s petals a little stroke, and it moved a little faster, almost as if moving to some unheard music. “We are no apothecary shop, but if it is Poison Ivy…” Thoughtfully she brushed the soft quill across her chin, the white feather making a beautiful contrast against her purble-black skin. “Let me see…”

 

She got up from her seat, a backless, leather and wood stool that creaked comfortably when her weight came off. The woman stretched her long, slender limbs, and glanced at Traitor and his companion, a creature draped in a heavy cloak, who was busy murmuring to herself while dancing her fingers across the spine of dusty books on a shelf that was out on display for the public. Asha smiled slow and wide, her face though dark was bright and glad.

 

“Curious one,” she said with shift of her chin toward Bree, “that’s good.”

 

Asha’s voice was velvety rich, and slow -- the exotic accent made it sound like she might not known how to speak english with the mastery of a native tongue, but there was a charming way she put words together. Something that belonged to those of foreign blood. But she wasn’t foreign to Orisia, just the Black Queen’s court.

 

“Let’s soak it in tea, the rash -- where is it?” she was rummaging behind her desk now, and came back up with two containers, one was glass and would fit a hand or a foot, the other she didn’t bother pulling all the way out. It was large enough for a person to sit in. “Chamomile tea helps and soothes, and then an oatmeal lotion, and then time. These things, they take time.”

 

Her dark eyes glanced at Bree, and without directing herself at Traitor again, she spoke directly to the woman. “Come here, child, and let me see what you’ve done to yourself.”

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4 hours ago, Pasion Pasiva said:

“We are no apothecary shop, but if it is Poison Ivy 

Traitor looked around, feeling his cheeks flush a little. He wouldn’t admit it out loud, but he actually had mistaken the shop for an apothecary. Bree might have corrected him before they arrived... 

He stood with his arms behind his back, feet spread a little, and his back straight. He tried not to show his mild embarrassment on his face. She seemed willing to help anyway.

Traitor had been a little distracted when he’d walked in, but he noticed the woman’s unusual and, if he were honest, attractive appearance now. His cheeks flushed a little more. He did not entertain the thought, since he did not mean to be disrespectful, but he couldn’t be blamed for taking note.

4 hours ago, Pasion Pasiva said:

Let’s soak it in tea, the rash -- where is it? 

Bree did not respond, except to pull her sleeve up and hold up her arm. Amidst the intertwined tattoo vines and flowers, a spot just above her wrist was angry red and spotted with hives. 

To Traitor’s surprise, she then pulled her hood back and looked the woman right in the face. It wasn’t the first time he’d seen Bree meet someone’s eyes, but it didn’t happen often. She quickly looked back down and went on mumbling about various books she saw. She hadn’t removed her mask, which would have genuinely astonished Traitor.

When the woman called her over to see what she had done to herself, Bree giggled. “Oh yes, yes indeed. My fault. I touched the wretched plant... my blood attacked my own skin as a reaction. Not uncommon... Traitor isn’t allergic, but it’s still common... Oily residue... ivy, oak, sumac...”

She mumbled and approached the woman, holding out her arm. She continued to mumble the whole time. “Not an apothecary...? No, obviously. You’re educated... botany. That’s my guess. Pretty skin... Her skin is pretty, Traitor!” She said accusingly, as though he had said otherwise.

He cleared his throat and shuffled his feet. “I agree, Kitten.” 

“Kitten.” She scoffed. “Quadrupedal feline. I’m a biped. Silly pet name... She knows what she’s doing, Traitor.”

He held up his hands in mock surrender. “I’m sure she does.” He was used to her endlessly shifting trains of thought, he just hoped she wasn’t bothering the shop keeper too much. 

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On 8/10/2018 at 5:34 AM, Traitor said:

Traitor looked around, feeling his cheeks flush a little. He wouldn’t admit it out loud, but he actually had mistaken the shop for an apothecary. Bree might have corrected him before they arrived... 

He stood with his arms behind his back, feet spread a little, and his back straight. He tried not to show his mild embarrassment on his face. She seemed willing to help anyway.

Traitor had been a little distracted when he’d walked in, but he noticed the woman’s unusual and, if he were honest, attractive appearance now. His cheeks flushed a little more. He did not entertain the thought, since he did not mean to be disrespectful, but he couldn’t be blamed for taking note.

Bree did not respond, except to pull her sleeve up and hold up her arm. Amidst the intertwined tattoo vines and flowers, a spot just above her wrist was angry red and spotted with hives. 

To Traitor’s surprise, she then pulled her hood back and looked the woman right in the face. It wasn’t the first time he’d seen Bree meet someone’s eyes, but it didn’t happen often. She quickly looked back down and went on mumbling about various books she saw. She hadn’t removed her mask, which would have genuinely astonished Traitor.

When the woman called her over to see what she had done to herself, Bree giggled. “Oh yes, yes indeed. My fault. I touched the wretched plant... my blood attacked my own skin as a reaction. Not uncommon... Traitor isn’t allergic, but it’s still common... Oily residue... ivy, oak, sumac...”

She mumbled and approached the woman, holding out her arm. She continued to mumble the whole time. “Not an apothecary...? No, obviously. You’re educated... botany. That’s my guess. Pretty skin... Her skin is pretty, Traitor!” She said accusingly, as though he had said otherwise.

He cleared his throat and shuffled his feet. “I agree, Kitten.” 

“Kitten.” She scoffed. “Quadrupedal feline. I’m a biped. Silly pet name... She knows what she’s doing, Traitor.”

He held up his hands in mock surrender. “I’m sure she does.” He was used to her endlessly shifting trains of thought, he just hoped she wasn’t bothering the shop keeper too much. 

Asha was readily amused by the man’s flustered appearance. His pose was strained and tense, and while she spied the gleam of appreciation in his gaze, she also noted how badly he seemed intent on ignoring the sentiment. It didn’t matter to her either way. Many people looked at her with curiosity, with open and unperturbed attraction, and even with fear and distrust. Her appearance, along with her manner of speaking, and the culture of her people were not the things that most were used to encountering. If she expected to be accepted and respected, she had to recognize the fact that she was different, and that different was difficult for some people.

 

So she didn’t mind. She only kept smiling, her lips curled with mischief as she began to roll up her sleeves, revealing even more of that rich, dark skin of hers, all the way up to her elbows. She had slender wrists, long bones, and dexterous fingers that were busy pouring waters and measuring powders into the small soaking tub she was preparing for Bree.

 

When Bree lifted her hand to reveal her rash, Asha glanced up curiously and then clicked her tongue and nodded. “Tsk, that looks painful.”

 

When the girl removed her hood and revealed her masked face, Asha remained unphased. One of her hands dipped into the bath she had made, and stirred slowly, sloshing sweet-smelling water back and forth within the bowl.

 

“Oh yes, yes indeed. My fault. I touched the wretched plant… my blood attacked my own skin as a reaction. Not uncommon. Traitor isn’t allergic, but it’s still common… Oily residue… ivy, oak, sumac…”

 

“Traitor?” Asha echoed, glancing up from Bree who had settled down upon a stool that had been designated for her. Rich, brown-gold eyes, regarded the man who was still standing nearby, watching curiously and looking all the more embarrassed.

 

“Not an apothecary…? No, obviously. You’re educated… botany. That’s my guess.”

 

“That’s a good guess -- a correct guess,” Asha said with a grin, her white teeth making a dazzling contrast against her plum-purple lips. She had taken Bree’s hand and was now gently submerging it into the bowl she had prepared. “Now you sit still, let it soak for a moment.”

 

“Pretty skin… Her skin is pretty, Traitor!”

 

“I agree, Kitten.”

 

Asha watched the man shuffle his feet, and glanced at Bree -- she smiled at the bright eyes hiding behind the mask. She was amused by the endearingly awkward pair.

 

“You have pretty skin. I like your markings,” she said while tapping Bree’s tattoo. “Someday, soon I hope, I will have my skin marked as well. My people cover their whole bodies in markings. There you go,” she reiterated as she ensured that the rash was fully submerged under water. “You stay like that for a minute or two.”

 

She got up and walked behind the long counter that took up a significant portion of her office. She was digging around for something, but every now and then, she glanced up at Traitor and then Bree. “Are you two new to Versilla? There’s quite a few apothecaries in town. Funny you should end up in the Black Queen’s solarium. What are you up to? Are you looking for work…”

 

The gears in her mind were turning.

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On 8/12/2018 at 2:04 AM, Pasion Pasiva said:

“You have pretty skin. I like your markings,” she said while tapping Bree’s tattoo. “Someday, soon I hope, I will have my skin marked as well. My people cover their whole bodies in markings. There you go,” she reiterated as she ensured that the rash was fully submerged under water. “You stay like that for a minute or two.”

 

“Thank you.” Bree said with unusual politeness. She reached up with her free hand and slid her slender fingers beneath her mask, thoughtfully touching her face, though her tattoos were indistinguishable from the rest of her skin by touch. “Would like to see your markings, when you get them. Very interesting, variations in culture...”

On 8/12/2018 at 2:04 AM, Pasion Pasiva said:

“Are you two new to Versilla? There’s quite a few apothecaries in town. Funny you should end up in the Black Queen’s solarium. What are you up to? Are you looking for work…”

Traitor nodded as the shopkeeper spoke. “We’re pretty much always new to anywhere we’re standing.” He said pleasantly. “We travel a lot, and rarely stay anywhere long.”

He nodded to his unorthodox little sister. “That’s Bree, and I’m Traitor. It’s a pleasure to meet you. As for how we got here, somehow Miss Knowitall over there was aware of this place before I’d ever heard of it, and she insisted that we see it firsthand.”

Though you could not see it beneath her mask, Bree was smiling. Traitor knew her well enough to sense the smile, though her face was covered. It was like how some people live in a house all their lives, and can walk around it as easily in the dark as easily they can in the light, and even sidestep things that aren’t normally there. Bree’s face was so familiar to him, that he was simply aware of her expressions without having to see them. 

She dutifully left her arm lowered in the water, but she was reaching out, trying to get hold of a nearby book. “Traitor doesn’t appreciate architecture as some do.” She said teasingly. She stopped for a moment and eyed the woman. “Well, not man made architecture anyway.” She giggled and continued trying to reach the book. She began to mumble to herself again, but it was interrupted by the occasional giggle as she remembered her joke.

”Bree!” Traitor flushed again and shook his head. “That... I... Well, anyway, we are looking for work. We’re capable in a fight, reliable, and Bree is one of the smartest people I’ve ever met. Not that I’m an idiot or anything, but I’m a realist, and she’s obviously the brains in the family... even if she has no filter.” He glared at her, but he couldn’t help smiling a little. 

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“I am Asha-Kwame Imani, a dignitary from the Hunjabo Tribe of the Dorado Plains. It is a pleasure to meet you both, Traitor and Bree,” she said happily, her lips spreading into a rich and inviting smile as she switched her gaze between the siblings. “And like you both, I too am relatively new to the city. I was sent here to ensure good relations between my tribe and the Black Queen who rules the islands. She put me straight to work, just as soon as I arrived, here in the solarium.”

 

At this she paused, and regarded Bree, who was still slipping into fits of giggles. Asha had a very warm expression on her face. The odd-ball creature reminded her so very much of her own younger sisters -- 8 in total. But nearly all of her characteristics rang true in some form or the other, to one such trait in her own beloved siblings. Her heart went out to Traitor, who still looked bashful and quite put off by Bree’s little joke at his expense. But he seemed to recover quickly, and he very smoothly transitioned from introductions to the heart of their visit -- they were looking for work.

 

“You have come at a very right and proper time,” she replied to Traitor, although her body had turned and one of her long, slender arms had reached out to fetch the book that Bree was trying to grasp. She handed it over -- an old, dusty volume titled “Fabled Flowers of Genesaris”. She tapped the book cover before releasing it into Bree’s greedy hand.

 

“The city is going through renovations. There is lots of work to be found for lots of types of people. But if adventure is more to your liking, then La’Ruta has shown its favor for you by leading you here. About a month ago the Queen’s solarium was infiltrated and infested by a very aggressive invasive plant. It killed many of the specimens housed in this building, including some of the Queen’s most beloved blooms. I am attempting to rebuild the collection and am in desperate need of people who are willing to risk life and limb in the pursuit of education. You see the solarium is open to everyone, and we teach much and all that we can to those who come seeking knowledge.”

 

At this, she left Bree, and plucked up a small pamphlet from her desk on her way to Traitor’s side. She walked slowly, her round hips swaying under a very thin dress, which appeared to be more of a simple tunic in design. It fell open on both her sides, revealing more of her beautiful, dark skin, and a healthy helping of the heavy swell of her breasts, at least, from the side. The dress was bound around her waist by a golden chain, from which a collection of small pouches hung, dangling over her left thigh. When she reached Traitor, she was smiling wide again.

 

“Look through this, tell me if any of these quests interest you…”

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