I sing this song, for you

For Grievous

POSTED: Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:23 am

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

It had been no secret to anyone in the kingdom at this point that Grievous and Idrieus had a habit of not only starring at one another whenever they were in the same room together, but also spending more and more time with one another, only strengthened more when there was a formal event going on. As awkward as it was, the two of them had even shared a small dance during the reception to Krios and Kamari's wedding. It was a strange feeling in all honesty. Since her youth, she had always been so distrustful of men, hated them even. Never in her life would she want to be tied down to one of them.

And yet here she was, clearly attracted to this pale man, but of course not admitting to it. No doubt the other members of the kingdom were waiting for the two of them to make something of their relationship, but she was far more content to take things at their own pace. No doubt that Grievous had his own problems with such an accepted fact, as a few times when their eyes caught one another, he couldn't find the words to say to her, or even turned his gaze away, leaving her to grow a grin on her own face.

There was still plenty of items left from her dinner with Ankh. In the festive season, it was common for members of the kingdom to gather gifts for one another, and her small trip had brought her across some items she believed would be suited for him. Even so, her other purchases should not go to waste. With the small help of the mute servant, she had asked him to send a message to Grievous for a dinner of their own. She would handle everything, and all he would need to bring was himself.

Night drew nearer earlier in the day. Winter always brought quicker nights, but that was fine. It made for a better mood anyways. Setting up a few candles around her room, she had arranged two goblets, each with a glass of wine, food gently cooking to the side, and now the candles lit, emitting a bright orange glow throughout the room.

This was perfect.

The dog woman sat patiently at her table, blue gaze resting on the door as she waited to hear the man enter. At this point, there was no need for him to just knock on her outside door. He was more than welcome down her wing. It was only when others were trying to steal from her that she got... defensive.

I made a few assumptions. Let me know if there is anything you want me to change. +400 words.

Idrieus Eternity

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

POSTED: Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:13 am

[WC: 500]

As the cold began to creep in at nightfall, Grievous found himself resettling around the fireplace more than his sleeping quarters. The room had once belonged to his parents, and he supposed this sometimes made it feel strange. It was a large space for one person – large like the room he had once shared with his siblings.

This secondary room had become host to a sea of clutter, bits and pieces of things found and collected along the way. He came across things by chance. With little need of stuff, Grievous found himself now unhappily overwhelmed by the amount of material he had gathered. Most of it belonged to his family, though he had less and less contact with them. Someone had taken word down to Portland, but Grievous doubted he would gain a response, and certainly no visit.

The back rooms became places he sought to avoid. Besides, the fireplace was warm and friendly, and when he was tired he would settle into the great pile of bedding and sleep until need roused him.

Day in and day out, he worked.

By doing his job with such regularity, Grievous ensured that no one noticed anything out of the ordinary. The horses and livestock were cared for, he hunted alone or with a few others, and he tended to his property and his animals. Living an ordinary life seemed comfortable, but it was monotonous.

Idrieus became a point of light for him to focus on and follow. He found her, or followed her, and they sometimes crossed paths. Never before had he felt so peculiar and undone as he was around the woman. All these abstract feelings and thoughts left him struck dumbfounded. He had never felt so foolish!

The day after he had finally taken the time to dust and clean the altar where his can-tah slept and kept watch, a servant arrived at his property and a message that seemed fortuitous.

As the sun retreated west over the loch, Grievous made the long walk into the Ruins. The road was wide and often used, though peace and stability meant fewer folks saw need of healing. There had been no Cleric since his mother's departure. Now that the Seer was dead, fewer and fewer capable hands were available. They had plenty of warriors, but there was a general lack of support on other fronts.

He tried not to worry.

All the things he had been thinking about vanished the moment he stepped through the door. It was a bit of magic, this forgetful moment of in-between, a peculiar phenomenon he did not recognize – even if he had, Grievous was fixated on the things he saw.

She looked so beautiful and perfect in the candlelight, and the food smelled warm and good, and he realized she had done this for him and felt a surge of emotion that thundered at his chest.

You asked for me? He said stupidly, and couldn't hide the smile spreading across his face.


masks beneath masks until suddenly
the bare bloodless skull
Salsola
The Equinest
User avatar
Mel
Luperci
supernova
the fire rises

POSTED: Tue Jan 01, 2019 11:08 am

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

The slight chill had begun to linger in from the window, not having much to cover it with. At least there wasn't much extra wind outside tonight, or the mood she had set would be for nothing. The candles burned brightly, echoing their light off the stones of her room. Stepping over to a small fire, her hands moved over the cooked meat, giving it a nice touch while she was waiting for her guest to come. Much like when she had served Ankh, she wanted everything to go well, but this time for another reason than to just make a good impression of herself. Grievous deserved so much better than that.

Head turned up just in time to see the pale man stepping through her door. A genuine smile appeared on her face as she stepped over towards him. She was happy to see not only that the servant was able to get her message to him, but that he was actually here, standing in her room. Offering him a nod, she stood to the side, "Yes I did. It's been quite chilling and lonesome this winter. I was hoping you would like to have some dinner with me."

She saw no reason that he would decline, but was at least open to the possibility.

Regardless, she stepped back over to the meat, giving it another gentle touch, "The food is almost ready. It just needs to cook a little longer. In the meantime, I have some leftover wine." Both their goblets were full, though the dog woman stepped to the side, fingers gripping around one of the bottles as she brought it over to the table where she sat. Taking her goblet, she gave a small sip before turning her gaze on the man, "How has life been treating you?"

+300 words.

Idrieus Eternity

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

POSTED: Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:14 pm

[WC: 280]

She only smiled for him.

He thought this was the case, anyway. This real, honest expression she let him see. So much of their culture was based around the struggles of rank and involvement, and pleasantry and honesty were two different things. They acted as Salsola expected, and in her case, this had been under the guidance of a terribly strict teacher.

Grievous could not remember his aunt very clearly, but recalled her being a stern, serious woman. Given that she had raised a bear alongside her foreign-born daughter, Artemisia had pushed the boundaries of the Thistle Kingdom in her own way. The divorce from The Crone was exceptionally notable, in being that no other couple had ever broken such a bond without force.

His own smile broadened, and Grievous was quick to enter.

Yes! Yes, I would gladly stay – you should have told me sooner, I could have helped, he tacked on without thinking, moving to take his seat at the table. It was intimate, Grievous thought, admiring the candles and the way she looked in them. Had she always looked like this, and he just never noticed? What had he been doing, spending all his time carrying on with O'Riley?

Things are fine. I have been working with the new horses, the ones from Krokar. They will be good, it looks like. It sounded boring and mundane. He lapped at the wine to clear his throat. Wine was starting to become a favorite of his.

Wary when it came to asking her about her own duties, thinking Brocade's promotion still a sore spot, Grievous tried not to force the topic. Have you been busy? He asked instead.


masks beneath masks until suddenly
the bare bloodless skull
Salsola
The Equinest
User avatar
Mel
Luperci
supernova
the fire rises

POSTED: Tue Jan 08, 2019 9:42 pm

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

Idrieus could not help but smile whenever the man was near. It was such a strange feeling, to actually smile around a male. All others in the kingdom, she could not lend them her trust as she had with Grievous, and surely none would listen to her as he had. Even before this moment, both either one of them began to get close to one another, there was a strong bond they had formed on the battlefield. They knew one another's skills, and worked compatably with one another for whatever situation they were thrown into.

But it was nice to just have a moment like this one. There was no stress, no worry about what the others would say or think. Behind closed doors, they could do whatever they wanted in each other's company.

The dog woman couldn't help but allow her tail to wag a small bit behind her when the pale man enthusiastically accepted her offer. She gave a light laugh at his comment, to which she gave a small shrug, "It would have been nice for some help, but if I told you about it, it wouldn't be much of a surprise now would it?"

It was nice to hear that things were going well on his end. Grievous had made the choice to branch away from the shield tier in order to focus on other tasks. She respected him for his decision, but knew of the man's capabilities when it came to battle. Besides, having someone that worked so closely with horses and taking care of Dama, it helped to have him help her with riding lessons. Maybe not for battle, but at least for when it came to travel.

Idrieus moved over to the meat she had, giving it another test before pulling it away from the fire. Her ears caught his question, though at first she offered him no response. The last time they had spoken about her work was when she was furious over what Brocade had been able to accomplish before her. She had since calmed down about the whole event, but still hadn't given up on taking that position away from him, "I am always busy Grievous to ensure Salsola's safety and prosperity, though I have a close eye on our Director."

+300 words.

Idrieus Eternity

Salsola
The Paladin
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 Jan 09, 2019 1:51 am

[WC: 479]

No, he admitted. It would not be a surprise then. It is a good surprise, Grievous added.

The best surprise he had in a long time, if he thought about it. Learning his parents had left with his brother had been one of the worst. It was not unlike the day he had seen his father falter in the face of an enemy, or learned that his cousins were conspiring to seize the throne. Those had been moments of turmoil, when he had wrestled with his beliefs and perception of the world and the Law.

He had done what he had thought best at the time. No one would fault him for that.

It was complicated to be so closely tied to people of magnitude. The greatest blessing upon him had been that both his cousins had found other people to focus on – leaving him behind, as he had come to expect of people now. This time, though, it was all right. Grievous was fine being left alone.

Sniffing as the smell of cooked meat wafted through the air, the gray wolf suddenly found himself famished. He had developed a fondness for food that had been prepared. Though he did not understand the complex process that occurred, and how the easier-to-digest meals saved his body more energy, he knew they tasted better. Well, generally – he had suffered the loss of one charred piece of meat over a too-hot fire, and learned how unforgiving the taste of burnt could be.

Idrieus didn't sound particularly mad when she answered his silly question, but she was a difficult woman to read. Grievous thought himself privy to her subtle tones and moods, as if he had come to know her better in the time they spent together. He certainly watched her often enough to learn about her. Usually this was not for very long, and not close enough as to bother her. More often now he had been kept busy and found less time for such observation.

Grievous tilted his head to show he understood her outspoken response. Of course, with you being Paladin I expect as much. Nothing unusual among your duties is good news. He paused before ruefully adding: Discounting what happened to Krokar, that is. Though we did benefit from that, I suppose.

Grievous lapped at the wine. He shifted in his seat, enjoying just watching as she went about mundane things – cooking, cutting the meat, pouring wine. There was something strangely delicate about the movements. Intimate, was the word, and each time he thought of it the warm feeling the wine left in his belly spread.

Relaxed like this with him in her home, Idrieus looked untouched by the horrors he knew she had faced in her life. She was an exceptional woman.

I'm glad you did this, he blurted out. I enjoy being with you.


masks beneath masks until suddenly
the bare bloodless skull
Salsola
The Equinest
User avatar
Mel
Luperci
supernova
the fire rises

POSTED: Sat Jan 12, 2019 12:05 am

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

It seemed that Idrieus had grown a great pleasure in spending time with Grievous or even doing things like this for him. Not even just for herself, but for the male as well. She had recalled one time they had spent together, his cousin having lived with him for some time as well as knowing about his father leaving him behind as well as his brother doing the same. Come to think of it, she couldn't recall a single one of his siblings being in Salsola proper anymore. It was always a bit hard to tell how he was feeling, though being alone all the time.. he was probably slightly lonely.

A bit of the same kind of loneliness she felt without Artemisia in her life.

The dog woman quickly returned to her task after she had finished her response, taking a spare knife as she began to cut the meal she had prepared in half for them. Ears turned to the sound of Grievous' voice, giving a nod to him, "Mmm... Yes there's some truth to that."

She brought over two plates, one for each of them as she sat them down in front of their respective persons. Taking her own seat, she began to swirl around her wine, pondering her own thoughts. The pale man had always been someone she could speak openly to, even if it meant in disrespect or suspicion of another, "I have my concerns with what happened with Krokar. I didn't know much of the place.. but it is concerning and we'll need to be ready if something comes our way... though my concern lies more on Brocade. I don't know the details of what happened, though my concerns rest with his approach to things and mine."

Both were formidable warriors, but one seemed far more tame than the other.

Not wanting to ruin the mood with her own conflicting thoughts or shield tier matters that didn't need to be completely explored, she gave a sip of her wine, pulling the goblet down just in time as Grievous gave his blurted out compliment. One eyebrow rose slowly to his words. They were kind of course, but it was the manner in which he had done it. Eventually, she gave him a smile, reaching one hand out towards his own, "Well, I enjoy being with you too."

Idrieus soon turned her head out towards a window, thinking on something before her gaze rested gently on his own, "You know, this may be a bit of a bold offer, but would you care to stay for the night? It's already rather late and I would hate to have to send you home in the dark winter."

Why don't we spice things up a bit? +400 words.

Idrieus Eternity

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

POSTED: Sat Jan 12, 2019 1:05 pm

[WC: 527]

It had never occurred to him to feel lonely.

People were still involved in his life, after all. He worked with others. Every so often he did small favors for people, or would be joined when he went on hunts. These brief encounters seemed to fulfill a need to socialize.

The animals he cared for helped too. Without any proper leadership in this area Grievous went about the tasks as he understood them. Each horse was different. Even the other animals were different, though the sheep were basically all the same. He had become more appreciative of them, as he had with the other livestock. Lessons in patience and healing and learning to recognize signs when the suffering could not speak – these were things he had been learning bit by bit, and growing to appreciate.

Idrieus touched on her concerns. She seemed to have different ideas than the Director, but matters of the Shield were not ones Grievous found himself involved in. How they would proceed when it came to investigating what happened to the Outsiders would not affect him until he was told directly about his role. That was how it always worked before. Sometimes they didn't tell him much at all, and that always seemed to work out.

He wasn't thinking too much about Brocade Valentine or how the Shield was run. He was thinking about how beautiful she looked, and how her hand was so warm against his own. The fact she had offered it at all was an exceptionally large gesture.

So what she said next nearly floored him.

His eyes widened. His heart felt like it skipped a beat, and his hand twitched a little beneath her palm. A high, nervous laugh escaped him – something he tried to cover quickly by lapping at the wine.

Well, uh, I, if that's what you want, Grievous muttered. He looked at her for a few seconds, as if trying to determine if she was playing an elaborate joke on him. It did not fit her character, and so he dismissed such thoughts. They belonged to other people and darker times in his life. Slowly, a genuine smile spread across his scarred face and turned it soft.

Yes, if you'd let me, I would like that, he answered, squeezing her hand.

The dinner was pleasant and one Grievous found himself enjoying just as much as any he could remember. His head felt warm and fuzzy, and if it was the meat or the wine or simply being with her, Grievous didn't know.

They spoke about many of the same things they always did. She always found ways to make him think about things in different ways. Even after they had retired to her bed all they did was talk – at first laying side by side. He felt large and strange in her private space, as if he did not belong.

Eventually, as the talk finally lessened, she turned and pulled his arm over her body. Not daring to do more, Grievous curled up against her and breathed in the smell of her hair, gently drifting off.

He hadn't slept so well in years.


masks beneath masks until suddenly
the bare bloodless skull
Salsola
The Equinest
User avatar
Mel
Luperci
supernova
the fire rises

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