A knock at this hour?

RP taking place in the center of the continent of Chalcedonia. This consists of the lands of the Empire of Chaladonia, some of which are trying for independence since the death of King Ian Mercleis.
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Rael
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Posts: 36
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Location: Bellitose
Character Race: Mutated Namara*
Character's Profession: vagabond, adventurer
Age: appears to be in his
Gender: male
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Rael »

The old man smiles, "Blessed I am to run into such kind folk." With a slight tremble he takes the spoon with his right hand and samples some of the soup. "Oh, this soup is quite nice," he chuckles, "quite warm.

He places the spoon down, and smiles over at Sheilis, "Mayhaps, good sir. In this life or another, when we were different flowers than we be here today, sharing yet the same energy." He smiles thinly, "But then again, it is hard to say. When you've.... wandered as long as I, many energies does one meet." The old man's gaze then falls on LieAnia, "You are blessed more than I, to have such friends to help you weather the storm. But you too must be strong, like a great oak, for hardships and dangers of a different kind." His gaze falls on each of the three, "the most dangerous enemies never go for the body. They go for the deepest of wounds, to break us spiritually so that we could never again be a threat."

He continues to speak as he reaches into his cloak, "Time is no friend here tonight, darkness marches quickly and you've too far to go to make it in time. But you've treated me kindly..."He places an old stone on the table. 

Rael leans over to look it over, raising an eyebrow as his attention turns back to the old man, "That... is an old runestone sir. What spell does it possess?"

The old man nods, "Very acute observation, befitting one such as you. It is indeed a rune stone, and within a spell that will whisk whomever drawls upon it to the one place it remember well, a small town on the edge of a river and a swamp." His smile grows thin, "But, it has only enough power to be used once."

"A swamp?" Rael's eyes narrow, "Who are you and what do you think you know?!

The old man laughs, "Who me? I know nothing. I'm just an old wanderer, seeking truths and bringing light upon the shadows." Rael is about to retort, but the old man continues to speak, "Go where none are watching and use the stone! Where it will take you, dangers loom, but I worry not. Go now Queen, while you still can! May you find your king and your new Shards protect you!" As the sentence is finished, the old man vanishes. A couple of people look your way at you like you are all crazy or drunk, then turn back to what they are doing. 

Rael looks puzzled at the stone then his two companions, "I know the energy of this stone, and I am thinking you do as well. Who is that old man? Why did he possess something once held and made by Taal? And more importantly, is this a trap, or should we trust it?"
LieAnia
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Location: Bellitose
Character Race: Elven
Character's Profession: Ex Queen
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Age: Unknown
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by LieAnia »

Nia had only been half listening to the man as he began to ramble. But when the stone was placed on the table, it sounded as loud as a mug banging tempo on a revelry night at any given tavern. She knew it hadn't made that loud of a noise but her body shuddered none the less.

When the man spoke of a swamp, she slid her hands off the table to clench them in her lap. There had been a swamp... before... hadn't there? She thought for a moment, but the trail faded into a fog she couldn't keep a grasp on.

The man rose, about to depart. She had missed the exchange between him and Rael and was trying to catch up again when the old man turned and addressed her. When he called her queen, she felt the blood drain from her face. And the mention of Shards made the hairs on her arm stand at attention. "Tann...." she whispered as the stranger spoke of her finding her King. How would he know? How COULD he know?

He had no sooner disappeared and Nia was on her feet and rushing for the door. She apologized and blindly shoved her way through the people as if getting out was a desperate matter of life and death. Tears stung her eyes as she stepped into the air of the night. She couldn't catch her breath and made her way to the far right side of the Inn to lean on the wall. Bending over, hands on her knees, she closed her eyes and squeezed back the tears as she tried to gulp in air.

Tann...
Taal...
King...
Queen...
Shards...
Destiny...


All those words were pressing in on her brain and she was beginning to doubt her ability to do what she had set out so long ago for... to find her love and soul.
Sheilis Delana
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Sheilis Delana »

Sheilis arched an eyebrow as the old man spoke, and he tensed slightly when he reached into his robe though he did not relax when he placed an old stone on the table.  As the old man and Rael spoke with each other, the nagging feeling he knew this man in another time ate at him,.  The way he spoke was familiar, though he could not place his finger on it.  There was a strange man that had been friends with his Lord and Lady, a devoted servant to Mogen David and the laws of good, but he could not remember his name. 

As quickly as he seemed to appear, he disappeared and before he could respond to Rael's question if they could trust it or if it was a trap Nia jumped up and rushed outside.  Sheilis scooped up the stone, and quickly packed up their leftovers.  "For now, let us get out of here and away from prying eyes to discuss our options." He said this quietly, his words would only reach Rael's ears as he didn't want anyone over hearing that they were leaving the area.

He quickly headed out the door after Nia, something akin to panic in his heart as he reached outside and for a few moments did not see her the feeling of panic started to grow.  He had just found Lady Nia, and to so foolishly and easily lose her would be unforgivable in his eyes.  He stopped his racing mind, focusing on the cold calm that served him so well in all his years. As the panic was squelched, he spotted Nia off to the far right side of the Inn, gasping for air.

He went over to her, "Lady Nia?"  He hesitated a moment, "nothing has changed, you still have us, and if nothing else, we have a possible lead for new information at worst."

 
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Rael
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Rael »

Rael quickly took after them. Soon he caught up to them and his heart sunk at seeing LieAnia hunched over in panic. He had seen that look before...

Rushing over he knelt and took her left hand into his while he softly whispered, "Princess, fear not. He is not here. He cannot hurt you." By He, Rael of course meant Taal Zodo. Rael could feel the split god's residual power coming from the stone, and no doubt so could LieAnia. Taal Zodo is a power that one does not forget, and the terrors that LieAnia suffered when Zodo took control....

He tries to smile but fails, "Princess, things are different this time. Last time you though Tannhauser dead. This time, you know him to be alive. This time you can go to him. Whoever that old man was, and how he came to have this stone, we now have it, and with it a chance that we had not had before."

Rael sighs, his heart was heavy at seeing LieAnia in such a state. Taal Zodo had broken many spirits and many people, himself included. LieAnia was broken, of that it was certain. "Princess, I stand at your command. Tell me to go with you, and I shall follow you to the very pits of Xodod. Tell me to find the old man instead, and that I shall do. Ask me to find if He is anywhere near, and I shall not fail. But I must ask of you, find what strength and courage you have inside of you and hold on tightly to it. Find your husband. He needs you as you need him."
LieAnia
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Location: Bellitose
Character Race: Elven
Character's Profession: Ex Queen
Runic Element: Water
Age: Unknown
Gender: female
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by LieAnia »

Him!

He hasn't crossed her mind in a while and right now she feared He was right around the corner. Sheilis at her side gave her comfort, as it always had. He was right, they had a clue. The trouble was, was it a clue or trap?

Then there was Real. He has been her strength when she had none, in that other life. When he spoke of her sending him away, Nia suddenly gripped his hands with a tightness that would surprise him. The panic rose in her eyes as she barely managed a panicked, whispered plea. "NO! Don't go. Don't leave me."

Glancing from one warrior to the other, she slowly shook her head as she felt her resolve waning with the rise of fear starting to take a better hold. "I can't go back, Sheilis." She glanced at Real, "I can't go through it. Not again!"

Tears flowed down her cheeks as her eyes blinked back demons of memories. "Promise me, both of you," she freed a hand from Rael to take her Shard's hand as well. "Promise me you won't let him take me. Don't tell me to be strong. Don't tell me you'll find me. Don't tell me to live for Tann's sake. Both of you swear your most solemn oath, right here and now. Swear to me that if..." the panic rose at the mere idea of Him. "Kill me. If He gets me... Kill me. Swear it!"
Sheilis Delana
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Sheilis Delana »

Sheilis listened to Rael's speech, nodding slightly to himself, though the old man was of little consequence he felt for now at least, but knowing where enemies were was always useful.

When she gripped Rael's hands tightly telling him not to go he had a flash to a time in the other life where she clung to his Captain as desperately.  It had been just after they had found her again when she had been taken by Taal Zodo and she was terrified as she was now.

When she took his hand and looked at him with those same panic filled eyes and asked for his oath to end her if HE even got his hands on her again for a moment he hesitated.  He could never truly bring harm to his lady, but he felt a qway to swear to her what she wanted while staying true to his mission to keep her safe.

"I swear to you, Lady Nia, that you will NEVER fall into his hands.  I will go to any lengths, and any means to make sure of that." He knew he would likely die first to give her a chance to escape and get to safety, hopefully with Rael's help.

He glanced at Rael, smirking mentally, he had come to trust this man more then he thought he would at this time, but allies were few and he had proven himself as so far.  "With that said m'lady, I think it is best we move quickly to keep ahead.  As for the stone, it can wait till we are out of the city, if not longer so we can prepare for whatever lay at the other end."
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Rael
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Rael »

Rael feels her strength, her terror, as she grasped his arm tightly, and could feel it in her panicked words. He struggled to keep his own emotions at bay as he witnessed his lady's torment happening all over again. Sighing, the now namarian once rube responded, "I know...."

I know, he played through his mind, and while he didn't experience all that Zodo had brought upon the elf queen, he did see it.... witness it. He could remember the most heinous of the tortures, the rape and impregnation, and at that moment had himself thought to find a way, any way, to get LieAnia out of there. What he didn't know at that time was that his lord could feel it too, well the other half.... Taal. Something had snapped within Taal that day, and that day is when Taal secretly began to aide those that he thought... he wanted... to kill him. He bade Rael to wait, and after the pregnancy was over and the elf queen had regained some of her strength, he made Rael swear to him never to let LieAnia fall in His grasps again. Rael, at this moment wondered if LieAnia could separate Taal from Zodo as he did, though he seriously doubted that she could. It was of no matter though, at least for now.

Rael sighs, "My lady, the oath you have asked of me has already been made. I swore then, as I swear now, you will have freedom from Zodo. I should prefer it to be here, but if you must go to Xodod to escape him, then we shall go together."

Rael stands, offering to lend her his strength, "The Shard speaks true. We have lingered her for far too long. Let us make out exit of this tainted city, and then we can decide what to do with this stone."
 
LieAnia
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by LieAnia »

She heard the words. She felt the conviction, the protection, the sacrifice if necessary. Somewhere inside she was comforted.

But deeper still, she wasn't. He was here, in this time, and she'd end up facing him again. She just knew it. Despite the desire to run, the stone reiterated, even more, that she'd never be able to run far enough.

Missing silently, Nia moved with the men as they headed out of the city. Silence covered her nearly as heavy as her own clothing, heavier perhaps. She had to find Tann. He was alive and always knew how to defeat the Dark One that haunted her dreams even in this other life.

**

She moved as of in a daze. All she was consciously aware of was the cloak before her that she shadowed and kept pace with, and the looming shadow of the man behind her. She was aware enough of their presences that when other bodies came between her and either of them, she stiffened as if awaiting a physical blow. Only then to relax and exhale once the invisible tether between her protectors was once more unimpeded.

Beyond that, her mind wandered. Three times He had managed to capture her. Whether from time, space or some psychological protection, the details were fuzzy. She was grateful for that. What she wasn't grateful for was what she did remember. 

Pain.

Pain from words of a friend who betrayed her when He took on Zodo's persona... Pain from bindings and shackles... Pain from whipping and other physical harms...

And she remembered Him taking by force that which she gave of herself freely to her beloved. Thankfully, drugs and magic had seen to her obliviousness of the pregnancy and child. She had no clue that such a thing had occurred. Only that suddenly she had been spirited from her captor's Keep and taken into the night to once more, only to collapse into Sheilis' arms some time later and then reunited with her king.

**
So lost in thought was she that the next thing she was aware of was someone screaming her name and crying out as she went to her knees.* Blinking, and shaking her head, a panic filled face searched desperately for friends and foes as her teeth chomped down onto her lips, breaking the skin as a moment of fear rose in her gut.

"Sheilis!" She managed to call in a half strangled voice that has hardly any volume. She didn't recognize where they were. How long had she been lost in her mind? A moment? An hour? Longer than that? Was this the same town or a new one? That same look of lost desperation would greet anyone who caught her eyes.

*
She felt Tann's cry for her in his thread.
 
 
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Rael
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Rael »

Rael stayed to the rear of the group, but still close enough to LieAnia and Sheilis should either need help. While the once rube now namarian had doubted that Sheilis would need help, he worried greatly about LieAnia. She was still reeling from terrible shock It was unfair, he thought. He was still getting used to the body he'd been given life in, he couldn't imagine having to deal with that, the missing love of his life, and the torment of his oppressor hanging over him. So it didn't surprise Rael how the elf queen just moved with the motions, both there and not there. Xodod, it was more of a surprise that she was even able to walk.

The walk was slow, and tedious. They had to take the side streets to avoid the crowds and growing number of guards who seemed to be searching for someone. It was deemed best to avoid as many people as they could, especially given LieAnia's state. Night time did make this easier, but Bellitose was no small village. It was a huge, sprawling capital city with many smaller towns blending in with Bellitose proper. By the time they finally made their way out of the southern borders of the capital, the morning star was fast in the sky and the sun was just beginning to peek over the horizon.

The trio had just made their way near an old abandoned farm, the farm house boarded up, the barn in serious neglect, and the other out buildings in not such good shape either. It was then when LieAnia went to her knees and called out for Sheilis. Rael was there right by her and chose to keep watch while her guard attended to her. Finally he stated, "We could go to the barn. Perhaps we could find some rest there, and maybe ponder the stone and what to do with it." His eyes fall on the elf queen, "She is no doubt tired and needs her rest though I fear... she may not find her rest until she's reunited with Tannhauser. And besides," Rael sighs, "We are still not far enough away from Bellitose for my comfort. Something dark is happening here... A sinister plan that is hidden just from our sight."
 
 
Sheilis Delana
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Re: A knock at this hour?

Post by Sheilis Delana »

Sheilis lead the way through the city and the small towns that intertwined with each other.  A few times he was able to pocket some coin from some one who came close to him in passing,  building the reserve they had to be able to purchase supplies. 

Occasionally he would glance at Nia, a faint frown crossing his face.  she was quiet,, and he wondered when the silence would break. He was greatful to the powers that be he had an ally  behind him and also keeping and eye on Nia.

As they reached the border he was pleased with their pace considering Nia's distracted state.  He was also disappointed that there had been no opportunity to purchase or steal transportation to make their trip easier. Sheilis froze when he heard Nia' strangled cry and in a flash was kneeling in front of Nia so they could be eye to eye and placing his hands on her shoulders,  "aye my lady.  Still here as always."

At Rael's words he followed his gaze and studied the abandoned farm house and saw good potential.    "It will do for today, with morning and light it would be best to get off the roads for a bit.  With the death of the king, a vacuum comes and it's better to hunker down out of sight."

With that he looked back to Nia, "come let us set camp in the house and figure out the next few steps. "
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