the woods are lovely dark and deep

POSTED: Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:36 pm

()

Apologies for the wait!

How he despised cities. Hoofbeats resounded on hard juts of stone as the speckled stallion’s dark rider urged him forward with an ever present scowl. He eyed the fallen structures, the barren walls, and grotesque unnatural colors with the utmost contempt. But so too did he see the vines, choking weeds, and thriving grasses that poked up between the cracks in their ancient facades. This was what pleased him- the emergence of nature as time wore away all traces of the despicable two-legged wretches who thought themselves gods. Clearly this was Nanin’s triumph. Athras could almost see the marks in the earth where he trampled the ground, hear the thunderous beats of his hooves. What a day that must have been when at last his god had sundered the human’s grip on his horns and taken back what was truly his. Theirs. Slowly, Athras would see it all come to ruin. He prayed for forests to retake the earth and stain it verdant green, but even his beloved stag-god did not hold such power.

He picked through the bones of the ruined landscape carefully, sticking to paths that had the most natural growth and least instability. It was rough going for the stallion. Hasufel stumbled from time to time and Athras often had to coax him to continue on. When they saw the first trees, he diverted the stallion south for if there were trees there would also be life. He wasn’t wrong.

The nearer they drew to the dark pines, the more trails of scent greeted his nose. At some point they strengthened, numerous- a solid wall that warned: no further! He drew the stallion to a halt and dismounted. Before them stretched a forest of dark pines, their number so dense they shut out the light far ahead. Athras longed to continue, to bathe himself in their shadow and breathe the fragrant air, but respect for this strange new power kept him in place. Though it did not stop him from planting a palm against one of the trees. He closed his eyes and bowed his head. This wood was old, it boasted a presence unmatched by all but Taur’s claim of Caledonia. He hadn’t felt anything like it since and was nearly humbled by it’s power, and the memory of his fallen home. Slowly, he opened his eyes and lifted his head to let loose a song deep and smooth. For whoever dwelled here, they were worthy of his respect.

Athras
New Caledonia
The Lord-Regent
User avatar
Stormie
Spotlight Soul Luperci Priest I, Diplomat I, Rogue I

POSTED: Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:24 pm

Cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me

There was not much that could be said or done in regards to recent events. Bringing up anything about the betrothals would probably either be met with a slight disgust, as seemed to be the case when she had spoken with Brocade, or perhaps there were those that would see nothing wrong with it. Maybe there wasn't to them, but the entire practice was forcing others together.

And the one union that was getting together for something other than being forced or for a loveless politic gain was her.. and even the Boss couldn't care less about it. Idrieus was of the belief that actions spoke louder than words. When she sought to make such a big deal out of Brocade's betrothal and spend such little time on everyone else, having the least to say about the one that should have been a meaningful union, the Paladin held nothing but disgust for her leader.

And O'Riley, well he wasn't much better. He just stood at her side, going along with anything she said or did. It was a wonder if he had a will to be his own leader or if he was just another puppet under her lead.

The dog woman paced along the borders, rapier resting gently at her side. Much of her day had been taken up by her duties, be them Shield or to her own restoration project. A fair amount of progress had been made, and it wouldn't be too long before her project would see its end goal. There was no telling what she might do with the old books.. rather how to dispose of them.

Though the readable ones had been restored to a new written format, there was something to be said for the old books that had lasted for this long.

Idrieus' attention was brought back to the present patrol when she heard the sound of someone in the distance. Normally, either Outsiders were too dumb, wandering into the borders, and usually meeting their end, or if they made a call then they were here to join. Had this been the case?

Moving her hand down to her rapier's grip, she paced towards the sound, finding the earthy and dark shaded man. She couldn't help but think he looked like another male she had come across before when she had gone looking outside of the borders. He held his hand against one of the trees, and he was alone.

Stalking closer to the man, her eyes narrowed on him, her curled tail straightening out slightly to show her dominance over him, "What is your purpose here?" He was an Outsider, though she had refrained from using the word. She had been in his position once, an Outsider. It was more suitable for trespassers. At least this one was far smarter than them.

+400 words.

Idrieus Eternity

Salsola
The Inquisitor
User avatar
Salena
Luperci The Price for Freedom More than a Warning
Karma's Gonna Come Collect Your Debt
smiles of plated GOLD

POSTED: Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:25 pm

()

The bark bit into his palm, the pad giving way to it’s many ridges as he waited in the calm and quiet. Darkness black and familiar bade him enter, a siren song to the son of druids as birds flitted and chirped overhead. How he longed to delve into it’s depths and swathe himself in shadow like a specter of a bygone age. But he curbed his desires and stood upon the threshold, silent as the stalwart pines. It was not long until a member of this strange new land greeted him, a dog of vibrant patterns- and his observant gaze fell immediately to the blade at her hip. His own dagger was concealed beneath his robe, belted in a hidden sheath at his hip.

The woman spoke no pleasantries, her questions were focused and direct as well as her entire demeanor. Athras’s gaze sharpened at this, taking her in. “I didn’t know 'here' existed.” He said. “But color me intrigued.”

“I am Lord Athras Eryn of fallen Caledonia.” He bent slightly forward in a mild but courtly bow. “I was on my way south when I discovered your borders.” His cyan eyes glanced around the forest’s edge, peering with unguarded interest into the landscapes beyond. “What do you call this place?”

Athras
New Caledonia
The Lord-Regent
User avatar
Stormie
Spotlight Soul Luperci Priest I, Diplomat I, Rogue I

POSTED: Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:47 pm

Cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me

His gaze had sharpened once she had made her appearance to him. It was such an odd sight, the man moving his hand along the wood of the tree like he had never seen anything like it before. When she spoke up to him, he had explained he didn't even know that here even existed. His wording on the answer was strange to say the least. It was clear that he was probably new to the area if he was saying something like that.

Even so, he had admitted he had been interested in this land he came across. He was certainly smarter than most, so she had to give him a tiny bit of credit. He was still male, and so close to their lands.

Any encounter with an Outsider could be tricky, especially when it came to those who knew nothing of Salsola. There were those that were prospective members, but such were invited to the kingdom or came from the Outpost, not wandered up to the borders for such a thing. It was a wonder what kind of information was worth giving away. Though, the sound of this man's home would be something worth bring up to Elphaba as well as some of the other members of the Shield.

There were newcomers not far from here.

He introduced himself, a lord to a fallen kingdom. Instinct kept the Paladin's hand over the grip of her weapon, waiting in case something were to happen. Her gaze never fell from the man, "That title doesn't mean much if you are from a place that doesn't exist anymore." It was a place that had fallen. He was not a lord anymore.

Hesitant to share sensitive information to such a stranger, it would have been nice to have someone else here with her. The tip of her tail gave a small lash, before she straightened herself back out, "Why should I part that information with someone like you?"

+300 words.

Idrieus Eternity

Salsola
The Inquisitor
User avatar
Salena
Luperci The Price for Freedom More than a Warning
Karma's Gonna Come Collect Your Debt
smiles of plated GOLD

POSTED: Thu Jun 20, 2019 3:35 pm

(364)

His lips twitched at the woman’s crisp reply, a fact he had both acknowledged and denied in a single breath. Caledonia, as he had known it, was gone. It was now a land of usurpers, wretches and low-lives that sought to own and squander their great wealth. They had burned the ancient trees of Taur’s sacred forest, and scattered the many lives it’s bounty had supported to the winds, drowning some in pools of their own blood as blades and bows laid them low. But those that survived had gathered miles to the west, in their eyes his title remained and it was their eyes he valued above all. What did she know of his people. What did she care.

“Optimism.” He supplied with a pleasant enough smile, though it was tight-lipped. “There are a few of us who yet live, and they require guidance. I am well placed to assist.”

She was a wary thing, imposing with her muscle and the ever-present threat of her hand upon the sword’s hilt. Nevertheless, he continued. He had little choice. “Because, while we are all but refugees now, we fully intend to return to the wealth and esteem we had before. But, to do that, we require,” it pained him to admit this, but with the same tight-lipped smile he continued. “Aid. With the promise of returning the favor down the road.” He glanced again to the lands beyond where the pair of them stood, as if expecting to see another pair of eyes watching from the undergrowth.

“Is there someone else I should speak to?” He wondered. “Kings and queens do not often patrol their own borders, forgive me, if I’m asking too much. I’ve no doubt that you are a skilled and capable woman. But would this not be better served in the proper setting?” It was a risk, he was aware, and while he pondered the speed with which she could wield her blade, he gave her the same respect he would any lord or lady of the four clans of Caledonia. Politics were in his blood, and had been for generations. His skill had not decayed in the wake of Caledonia’s fall.

Athras
New Caledonia
The Lord-Regent
User avatar
Stormie
Spotlight Soul Luperci Priest I, Diplomat I, Rogue I

POSTED: Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:43 am

Cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me

Idrieus gave the man little to work with. Salsola was heavily known for their secrets, and she was not about to be the first one to let them out to some Outsider, Lord or not. He claimed that his title seemed somewhat valid given that there were refugees that had come to this area, and he was among them. What's more is that he had come out this way looking for the aid of said refugees, and he had stopped at Salsola to seek that kind of help.

One thing had bothered her though about his proposal. He was looking for aid, but with only the promise of offering something back in return. She was no sort of diplomat or perhaps even someone of the Merchant tier, but agreeing to such a thing would come to so many risks. They could be lying, using this as a chance to get something from them only for their 'promise' to fall through. Or, another case being that if they were called on for their aid in return, agree, and then never show. The whole thing made her ears pull back.

This would need to be reported to the leaders.

The Paladin's gaze focused again on the man as he spoke up. Her cold gaze narrowed on him the more he spoke. How she wanted to just send this man on his way, but she knew better than to do so, "No. You should count yourself lucky that you haven't even been chased away yet Outsider. If you're worth such a meeting with our Boss, then I'll be letting her know you are here. You will not set foot on these lands."

She paused, thinking more on it. Elphaba would want to know about this. She would be better to handle relations like this. Even so, a report would go better with more information. The tip of her tail gave a flick, "If you want to speak to her, then I'll need more than what you have offered. What sort of aid could you see to offer us in return?"

+300 words.

Idrieus Eternity

Salsola
The Inquisitor
User avatar
Salena
Luperci The Price for Freedom More than a Warning
Karma's Gonna Come Collect Your Debt
smiles of plated GOLD

POSTED: Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:19 pm

()

have a looong post xD

His position, wasn’t a position at all. He knew this with excruciating cognizance, he’d been living with it for months. In poverty, squalor. How it pained him to be here now, empty-handed, a beggar after scraps. But he was not without his devices. He was not without his wits. Athras was willing to pay any price, swear to a great many things. He hadn’t the qualms of his more righteous subjects, and he had skills. It wasn't much, but it was something.

The woman’s eyes narrowed, he could see the wheels turning, feel the distaste radiating off her mottled form. Oh, she’d like to be through with him, and yet...Graciously, he placed his hands in front of him, to settle her mind. “As you say, my lady.” The title rolled off his tongue. He didn’t mean it, of course. This was not the Caledonian court, he didn’t know what this woman meant to her...Boss, was it? Whether or not she was a grunt or held a badge of office. But right now he needed something from her, and he was prepared to use every tool in his arsenal to get it. Should could be immune to such flattery for all he knew, or sharper than he gave her credit for. The fact that he mentioned her leader-- by title, was significant.

“In truth, my lady, we can offer very little.” Her words and tone passed over and over through his thoughts, and he noted with curiosity the term “Outsider.” It wasn’t conspicuous in and of itself, but the way she spoke it sounded somehow much more significant. “We have soldiers who have survived war, and are stronger for it. We have smiths capable of creating arms and armor." He pondered what else they might offer, and came up short. Even his canny mind could not twist the words to make them seem a worthy risk. However…

“Personally,” the stallion behind him stirred, a great grey-coated beast that while lean was a well-muscled creature with a long neck and refined features. “I don’t suppose your people are interested in horseflesh? My stallion here is of excellent breeding, if you doubt me, go ahead- inspect him.” He gestured to Hasufel. The horse’s nostrils flared as he blew hot air out his nose, his hooves pawing the ground. Athras’s gaze followed her whether or not she took him up on his offer, “I’d be willing to cede breeding rights, should your herds need new blood. Of course, I would need him back.” Though he did not make his offer without certain stipulations. “And I would like to supervise. I’m sure you understand.”

Athras knew while Hasufel was in fact a valuable animal, even that may not be enough. This place was powerful and it was well-populated. The border’s were like a wall of scents, many people lived here. He had to sweeten the pot.

“Otherwise.” His eyes took on an odd gleam and the shadows around him seemed to lengthen as he leaned slightly forward as if he were about to divulge an especially dark secret. “I have certain skills.” He tread carefully here and made certain not to reveal too much. “Skills that your Boss might find very useful, indeed...For the right price,” and elaborated clearing up any confusion the woman might’ve had; his price now would be their aid for his people, nothing more. Not yet. “If she sees fit to aid us I’ve no qualms with using these skills to her benefit...and discretion. He straightened then, ears twitching. “More than that, I’d rather discuss with her directly, no offense intended.”

Athras
New Caledonia
The Lord-Regent
User avatar
Stormie
Spotlight Soul Luperci Priest I, Diplomat I, Rogue I

POSTED: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:12 pm

Cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me

He had been lucky so far, and as long as he remained mindful not only of where he was, but the position that he was in, then maybe he would be lucky enough to receive an audience with Elphaba. She was not one to stand for wasted time, was sure that the Boss was not going to be either. All the more reason for her to gather as much information as she could before seeking out the one in charge.

The Paladin kept silent, listening and watching as the male began to list off the kinds of things that would be available to them should Salsola decide to share information with him. They had warriors, they had trademen, and one thing in particular that he had brought up was the use of his own horse for some breeding purposes. To this notion, he had a few rules to go along with this particular option, but it was not her place to say if it would be accepted. Salsola already had a fair number of horses of their own to use anyways.

And horses were her fiancee's territory, not her's.

One eyebrow rose as the male began to wrap up his words, claiming to have a certain set of skills of his own. A pang hit her, distrust in her own being. She would be glad not to have to put up with him any longer.

Light blue eyes narrowed on him as she spoke, "I'll relay what you have told me to her, but I won't guarantee she'll come here to meet with you. You are to stay here, and I will not tolerate if even a whif of your scent crosses that border." She felt her hand grip slightly tighter along her weapon as she began to turn her back on the man, disappearing into the woods. Her head had moved over her shoulder a couple of times, making sure that he had not been stupid enough to try anything when her back was turned.

Once she was certain, she picked up the pace, heading for the Ruins.

Figured we could go ahead and end this here or with your next post. +300 words.

Idrieus Eternity

Salsola
The Inquisitor
User avatar
Salena
Luperci The Price for Freedom More than a Warning
Karma's Gonna Come Collect Your Debt
smiles of plated GOLD

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