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 Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:58 pm


Kali looked around her quarters and shook her head softly as the guard spoke, "Is the room not satisfactory?"

"No."

Kali turned to look at him with her strange, swirling eyes.

He swallowed hard, the unease of being near a wizard, much less a black robed wizard was clearly unnerving him. He looked at her, "I can see if there is another..."

Kali sighed and spoke in exasperation, "There is NO room in this cold Keep that would be satisfactory, so don't bother."

He stepped back and looked at her. It was clear he wanted to say more but instead he nodded and hastily left the room. Kali shook her head and threw her formal traveling cloak over the chair and walked to the window, looking out across the city. Her eyes traced the lines of the buildings and stopped on the massive May Pole that had been erected in the square. All the merriment, all the celebration... and they were all one breath from dying.


Nol looked at Kellan as she made her remark about Kali and he shook his head, "Please do nothing of the sort."

She would see in his eyes that his love for Kali was lost a long time ago, and that he had no lingering wishes or feelings regarding her. He smiled however, showing his love for her.


Trystan, always jovial, stepped forward and embraced Kellan, "It is good to see you as well, Tanjee is..."

Tanjee came huffing and puffing to them, and as the exchanges of familiarities began to wind down Trystan spoke, "Come my friends, let's to the Keep, Lady Rose has prepared rooms for all of you, and I am sure you want to get out of the formal wear and into something more appropriate for tonights opening ceremony of the May Festival! There will be much joy and laughter... and I am sure, plenty of mead!"

Nol laughed and slapped Trystan on the back as the group made to the gate which lead to the Keep.

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:59 am


For now there was little to do but wait and observe. Her eyes looked upon the May Pole glancing from base to top and back down. Oh what a grand spectacle she could make of this tree, but she also reminded herself that this trip was to gather information. If there was a chance to spread a little mayhem then she may take the chance to do so. For the moment however They simply needed to spread their wares so that they could glean as much as they could about the city and its defenses to help aid in their later infiltration of the molten lake and her hidden tower.

She smiled as she walked with Rorie in their guises and did her best to feign interest and enjoyment.



Rose did her best to present a strong front and pleasant face for her guests. She personally showed the lord and lady to the quarters the pair had occupied on previous occasions. Other than some upkeep everything was almost exactly as the pair had left it.  Rose had noticed that the young prince was not in attendance but after the events that had transpired at the wedding she was not surprised. This trip was as much a political event as it was a social event. If it were her own child she would likely have made a similar choice. Though it was quite small the likelihood of something happening during the festival was enough that the young heir's safety was paramount.

"I shall leave you to your preparations my friends. If you are in need of anything you have but to ask. I shall see you both later this afternoon and once the formalities are dealt with I look forward to catching up with you both." Rose bowed to Myth and Rayann a moment before flashing a smile. With her retinue at hand she disappeared down the hall leaving them to settle in.

Myth motioned to his lady to pass into the room first before following her in closing the door. The assigned guards remained outside flanking either side of the entrance to their quarters. Their personal affects would be there soon and they could change for the evening. Myth dropped the blank expression from his face looking back to the door and then Rayann. "I have a feeling the talks tomorrow are not going to be pleasant. The lady of the keep puts on a strong front but I could see the stress of her station weighing heavily in her eyes."
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Wed Apr 15, 2015 10:32 am


As Rorie paused with Piramay, staring at the massive May Pole he lingered in the moment, calming himself, letting the presence of his sister leave his thoughts and focusing on the mission. He had never felt such a desire to extract revenge, but he also knew that in time all things would surface. For now he felt the warm, almost burning touch of his new partner and a half smile crossed his face as he began to imagine this city burning to the ground. Their wares, disguised as soaps, salves, balms and lotions would ignite every single person that wore them once Piramay enacted her spell and he perpetrated the magic with his own power. He could already hear the screams and he turned to look at Piramay, "A grand spectacle this celebration will be, truly a May Dance to be remembered."

He allowed his mind to open so she could see his thoughts, the city burned to ashes, the screams and the destruction. As quickly as he had opened up he closed it off, he trusted her, and wanted her to see, but he also knew better than to reveal too much to anyone for longer than was necessary to get the point across.

"Come my wife, let us open our cart to these travelers and allow them the pleasure of our products."

They made their way to the town center, removing the massive tarp from their cart. It was intricate in its design, unfolding quickly into an impressive store front, magically enhanced to allow the aroma of the essential oils to permeate the air. Soon people were gathering and Rorie spoke, "Come good people, my wife and I have been perfecting the art of mixology for decades! Our aromas are uniquely and lovingly mixed, spices from Endscape, tea leaves from the base of the Tower of Eli in Silvanesti, mosses from the brackish waters of Swiftwater on Ice Mountain Bay to exfoliate and cleanse you... YES, we have worked tirelessly to bring all these exotic ingredients to you."

He grabbed a bottle and pulled the cork free, allowing the delectable scent waft into the air and dabbed a stick with a cotton ball attached to the end inside. Removing it he walked to some of the ladies, "A sample of how these oils work..."

Touching the cotton to their necks the women felt the warm tingle of what they assumed to be the ingredients working, but what was in fact a cleverly and deeply cloaked enchantment that let the magic within permeate the skin and flow within them like their own blood.

"AND FOR THE MEN... A more masculine scent, designed by my wife! A scent that she claims will draw the lasses in, and make you more desirable!"

He turned to Piramay, gesturing with his hand and smiling deeply. His charismatic manner and flowery words were already bringing in a small crowd. Several of the younger men were beginning to look for Piramay to display a sample and share as Rorie was doing with the ladies.

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Apr 17, 2015 5:26 am


Taking a small vial off the cart Piramay stepped forward a smile from ear to ear. A flourish of her dress as she stepped up motioning to a young man to step forward from the crowd. "Come come don't be shy."

Much in the same manner as her companion she used a swab of cotton to draw forth and apply her ware. "Whether hard at study or work I assure this will draw the ladies attention."

She gave the youth a light push back towards a small group of young ladies and watched the subtle effects of the ingredients take hold and draw their attention. "A fair warning though, all things are best in moderation gentlemen."

It was a lucrative afternoon of business for the couple as they spent they spent their time doing business. By the time it had passed into evening they closed shop having peddled away a good portion of their product. "Alas good people we must depart for this eve for we to wish to enjoy the merriment of the festival as well, but on the morrow we shall return."
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Apr 17, 2015 9:52 am


The crowd groaned as the two closed shop, Rorie stepped forward, his hands held out and spoke, "Good people, this is a time of celebration, let us never forget that. Allow the merriment of this week to fill your souls with gladness and joy, and as my wife says, we will reopen tomorrow morning, tell your friends, tell your loved ones, spread the word!"

The crowd dispersed and Rorie leaned into Piramay, taking her in his arms as a husband would to his wife and whispered into her ear, "Almost lucrative enough to earn a living... but not as fun."

Kissing her on the temple he stepped back and finished locking the cart. Though the people in the area wouldn't see it due to the cloaked spells, the cart was completely protected from intrusion thanks to the number of incantations and spells that secured it. Two city guard approached and one spoke, "Quite the crowd you drew today!"

Rorie turned and looked, they were younger men, typical that the lowest ranked new recruits would be cutting their teeth by patrolling the streets. Rorie took Piramay's hand in a loving gesture for the two to observe and spoke, "Yes, it was a good day of business."

One of the guards looked to the other and then back at the couple to speak, "Are you sure that a cart so popular won't be pillaged at night?"

Rorie raised an eyebrow and spoke, "Whatever do you mean sir?"

"Well... there are a lot of people about, the city being full of so many strangers and there are so few guards as it is. Some business people have asked for extra protection, you know, a higher amount of awareness to be kept on their cart."

Rorie looked at Piramay and smiled before turning back to the young guards, "Dearest wife, it seems as though these two are asking for incentive to watch over our cart for us."

The two smiled confidently that their palms were about to be lined with a touch more silver, "One could only suspect how Sir Trystan would respond knowing that his guards were fleecing Heartlund's guests."

The guard who had been speaking cleared his throat and suddenly looked a bit nervous. Rorie looked at him with his icy blue eyes and spoke, "Not all who are unknown to you are strangers in this city lad."

The guard, knowing he was caught spoke, "My apologies sir... it is true however that we are short handed, we will keep an eye on your ware cart, just please don't..."

Rorie stepped forward and spoke, "Don't fret lad, our cart is protected, we made the acquaintance of a white robe many years ago who placed a spell over our cart, it keeps prying eyes and sticky fingers from obtaining any more than they should. However, I do understand that a city guard must make a low wage."

As if sensing his direction, Piramay slipped two small bottles into Rories hand, just as he arrived at his sentence, "Two bottles, one for each. A "love potion" of sorts that will slay any lass who comes within three meters of you. A secret formula of my wife's own making, and one of the most expensive of our products. Use it sparingly, as she said earlier, 'all things in moderation', even the warmth of young pretty lassies."

The guards smiled and tucked the vials away in their vests, "Thank you sir. We will keep a watch for suspicious characters around your cart."

Rorie smiled, laced his fingers into Piramay's and with a nod the two walked towards the May Pole. The setting sun was causing the fires to be lit and throngs of people were beginning to gather. The smell of roasted meats and potatoes was filling the air and music was booming from every inn and tavern. A mass band had been assembled at the town center as well and was playing as young, single women grabbed ribbons and danced around the May Pole. Rorie looked across the crowd and smiled as he spoke to Piramay's mind, ~ "The old saying goes that if you strike the Shepard the sheep will flee. How much more fun will it be however when we break the Shepard's hearts by burning all the sheep instead?"

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Tue Apr 21, 2015 7:40 pm


Piramay could only watch the exchange with the two guards was quiet amusement. Without question she passed the vials and watched with a twinkle in her eye as they took the items and departed. She was lost for a moment feeling the fires lit as night began to fall around them. She simply nodded in response to his silent words in her mind. The very imagery that such an event caused in her minds eye had chills running up her spine. Each race could be shaken to its core in unique and interesting ways. In the elves it had been in their tradition and history, in humans it was the people.

She was lost a moment in pleasant though when one of the guards appeared once more. He had an apprehensive look upon his face as he approached the couple. Her focus snapped to the young man and she smiled. He cleared his throat and bowed slightly looking directly at Piramay. "Pardon me ma'am, but might I inquire... what amount might you recommend of... you know." he eyed his pocket briefly.

With a chuckle she lifted up her hand extending two fingers "It is based a bit off your build... for you I would recommend two drops... no more,no less. Your companion perhaps double that."

The guard managed a thank you before disappearing again. Piramay chuckled looking back at Rorie before laying her head on his shoulder. In truth they both knew that two drops was all that was needed for the proper affect. One guard was assured a pleasant time while the other would meet an unfortunate end at the hands of a jealous lover in time.
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:12 pm

The city was alive with merriment as the last remnants of daylight faded to the light of Lunitaro and Solinari. Caleigh music exploded into the air from the town center, and the shouts that can only come from the influence of ale and mead began to lift into the sky. Lady Rose, Commander of the City stood on the tallest balcony of the Keep and watched the city with hawks eyes. Sir Trystan, Commander of the Watch approached her from behind and before he could say a word she spoke, "Come."


Sir Trystan stepped up beside her and looked out across the large city, his eyes almost as sharp as his Lady's gave a quick sweep as he leaned onto the railing, "Three arrests so far, two public drunkards and a fellow who simply couldn't keep his trousers on."

As Lady Rose turned to look at him with a raised brow he rolled his eyes and lifted a rolled parchment, "The Dusk Report, none of the verbally spoken incidents are in it but they will be in my Dawn Report. Hopefully I won't be including anything about chaining folk to posts because we ran out of cells in the dungeon."

He sighed heavily and spoke, "I understand the necessity for morale, but the strain these events put on my men is equally difficult to manage," Sir Trystan looked out onto the city again, "However I know that the people of Heartland need this release after the last 18 months they have endured."

He looked to Lady Rose again, she was holding the Dusk Report, its seal still in tact, she looked as though she wanted to say something. He turned and squared his shoulders more formerly and spoke, "What is it Commander?"

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Wed Jun 15, 2016 2:44 am


"The people indeed are overdo this reprieve for I have little doubt that our troubles are over Sir Trystan. You should see some relief on the morrow as some of the princes retinue came specifically to assist with the keeping of order. Our allies know full well how vulnerable we truly are in the aftermath of all we have been through." Rose sighed looking out over the city and towards the dark tower that stood in the distance.

She shifted looking sideways to Trystan "There are however other pressing matters upon me this festival. I have two meetings to attend in the coming days. On the morrow after dawn has broke I am to meet with Prince Myth'Alas and the gathered heads of the order to discuss the matters of Sanction." she let forth a tired sigh "I need not tell you how I think that meeting may go. It is however the less important meeting I have tomorrow."

Shifting around Rose pulled away from the ledge placing the report into her belt "Come evening I will be sitting in on a meeting with our assembled friends and allies to discuss another more pressing matter." Normally Trystan was not privy to such information and she knew he would have questions for her. "I will offer you this information now because you are a loyal companion and friend."

The Lady of the Keep took a breath to compose herself "There is a chance that I could be leaving Heartlund in one form or another after these meetings." She leveled her gaze upon her Watch Commander leaving out the part she was saying to herself. I will either leave as a Knight of the Rose or as a Paladin of the Divine
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:13 am


Trystan listened, and though he yearned for more information he did not let that cloud his presence in the moment and he listened to every word she had to say before responding, "Lady Commander, as always however I can assist you I will do as you ask of me."

He gave a formal salute but she could see in his eyes that he was saluting her as a friend more than a subordinate.


A soft clearing of the throat broke through the sounds of revelry in the background and Kali stepped forward from the shadows. Her face was enveloped in shadow despite her not having her hood up, all except the scaring on her left cheek which seemed to reflect the torchlight as if intentional, "Apologies for interrupting, I assure you I stayed back so as to not overhear." Trystan smiled and nodded but sent a quick sideways glance to Lady Rose as to assess her reaction to Kali's sudden arrival. "I wanted to pass along this information to you Lady Rose, and you as well Trystan, I have a very uneasy feeling regarding this festival."

Trystan furrowed his brow quizzically and spoke, "What is it?"

Kali looked up at him and then to Rose giving the slightest shake of her head, "That is the problem... I do not know."

Trystan's lip twisted slightly in exasperation and he let out a small sigh, "Well, thank you for passing that information on," He turned and looked out again across the hundreds of fires and torchlights that were illuminating the city.

Kali's eyes showed her displeasure with his sarcasm and turned fully to Lady Rose, "All I would suggest at this time Lady Rose, is that you tell your guard to be on their highest alert. There is a shroud...," She closed her eyes and for the briefest moment Lady Rose would see it, the look of frustration at not having all the information but feeling it in her gut alone, and then just as fast her face returned to the calculating Wizard that she was, "...I will let you know if anything else reveals itself."

Without another word she turned and left, the Elven side of her making her steps so quiet that not even the mice would hear her depart. As she made her way to the hall and back towards her chamber she stopped at her father's door. Not knowing if her brother was asleep she did something she rarely did and spoke to Myth's mind, ~ "Father, are you awake?" ~


Rorie walked with Piramay, partaking in the celebrations, toasting with drunken city folk, dancing with some of the women in the rounds, and finally they stopped at the May Pole, the center of the gathering. He looked at Piramay, their disguises holding themselves hidden among their true selves, and spoke to her mind, "Two more days my friend, two more days and we set the spark to the tinder... then we move on the Tower."

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:13 pm



The brief look of frustration on Kali's face did not put Rose's nerves at ease. A light sigh escaped her lips as she looked to Trystan "I think it best if we heed her warnings..."

She saw the look on her subordinates face as he was about to respond and shook her head while holding up her hand to stay his tongue. "I could see that what ever feeling she was getting was truly bothering her. I do not say this because I trust her Trystan, I say it because I myself am ill at ease this night. We are both touched by the gods in our own way and that we are both are uneasy could bode ill for us."

"We have a very dangerous and common foe with a mind more devious than we thought possible." Rose walked to the ledge motioning Trystan to join her. When he stood with her she swept her hand in an arc directing his eyes to the city below. "Look down to the streets below and behold the revelry in the streets. The people are relaxing and happy for the first time in over a year. They have stopped hiding within their homes and the walls of the city and have begun to live again." Her eyes shifted back to him "What do you think would happen if an event occurred on the same scale as our friend Ceredwyn 's wedding day?" She let that thought sink into his mind before she looked back to the city below.

"I simply advise caution my friend and that as stewards of this city we need to stand as vigilant as ever"



Myth sat in relative silence as his wife and son slept peacefully. Layed out before him were reports about the wilds around Heartlund and updates on the situation in Sanction. Although he was a guest for the festivities his work as a military commander would not allow him to sit idle. He was leaning back in his chair when his daughter's voice touched his mind. It made him sit upright and scan the room a moment drawing his eyes to the sleeping form of his son.

Quietly he stood from his seat and slipped across the room silent as the night taking up his sheathed blade placing it at his hip as he neared the door. He reached out to her mind as he reached out to open the door. ~"I am Kali"~

He said nothing as he stepped into the all greeting her non-verbally as he closed the door. His red hair was not pulled back and draped down his shoulders and back, a rare sight for anyone to see. He offered a small brief smile but said nothing more. He knew she had something on her mind and he would not draw out the niceties. "What ills trouble your mind my daughter."



Piramay simply chuckled looking upon the May Pole with a wide grin "And what a grand spark it shall be."

Her thoughts were firmly set upon envisioning the great piece of wood before her alight with fire burning slowly ash to be blown away with the winds.
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Thu Jun 16, 2016 9:50 am


Trystan looked at the retreating form of Kali, just as she slipped from sight. Turning to listen to Rose he stayed silent for a long time. Finally with a slight sigh he spoke, "There is more that I have not told you yet Commander, not because I have been trying to keep it from you but I wanted to make sure the time was right and we were alone so I could get your private counsel.

He turned to look at her and could see the slightest curiosity in her eyes. He inhaled deeply and spoke, "As you know, Tangee and I have been seeing each other regularly and found a bound of interest, well, that is an understatement isn't it?" Rose smiled and almost seemed to laugh under her breath at his chosen words, he continued, "Yes, I think it is safe to say that she and I are on a path of possible commitment to one another, something I believe we are both very excited about. Of course with all that has happened at Sanction, Silvanost, and this Festival, our time has been devoted more to duty than to leisure, but we have been finding a way. Anyway, I realize that this request might come at a poor time, however it is connected to the events and possibly a future solution to...,"

"Trystan."

He looked up as she cut him off, "Yes Commander?"

"What is it you want to ask?"

He could not help but smile at her straightforwardness, "Apologies Commander... Kali has asked Kellan and I to accompany her to Ice Wall to retrieve the Ever Winter. I wanted to get your opinion and obviously, your permission to accompany her on this mission."


As her father walked into the hall Kali could not help but smile, even if it was just slight, "Let us speak in my chamber."

She lead him a very short distance down the hall and into her room. As Myth entered she closed the door and gently moved her hand over the handle, whispering magic words that would ward their conversation from prying ears. She motioned for her father to sit in one of the two chairs and then took the other, folding her heavy velvet robes over her lap and placing her hands gently on top. Despite her renouncement of her heritage she still often looked the part of an Elven Princess without even knowing or trying. She looked Myth directly in the eyes and spoke, "I know you feel it too, there is foulness in the air over Heartlund." She could see the confirmation in his eyes, "What it is I can not discern, I have told Commander Rose and Trystan, unfortunately I could only tell them I have a feeling... no evidence. The exhalation is coming, nobody knows when, but it is coming."

She looked out the window a moment at her tower, barely distinguishable against the darkness of night, but its silhouette was there, "For whatever reason that people insist I remain in this keep during our time here in this city I am leaving and going to my Tower." She turned and looked at him, "I just wanted you to know. I did the processional, I played the part, I walked regally among the guard...," she looked at him deeply, "...but this is not my place."

She took in a deep breath, "I am more comfortable, both physically and mentally in my home, I will still attend whatever you require of me, as your daughter I understand I am bound by a certain obligation and duty despite whatever renouncements I utter but know that I do this for the sake of my brother and not for any other purpose."

She blinked her eyes and he saw the slightest flash of her deep love for Shaer, but he also saw her steel resolve. She reached into her robe and removed a small black velvet bag and handed it to him, "There are three stones, one for each of you. Utter 'minno' to the stones and all three of you will be transported directly to my tower. These are in case...," She sighed, "...for whatever reason you need to make a hasty retreat."

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Jun 17, 2016 4:10 am


"It would appear that Kali is gathering quite the assortment of people to embark upon this journey."

She let out a light chuckle looking at the expression on Trystan's face. "I was not aware she would be asking you. Your meetings of late have been... energetic, to say the least from my understanding of things. I know that she has already spoken to Kellen, Raju, and Nol for their assistance. I had thought her to speak to her parents and to your sweet elven maiden Tanji as well."

She looked thoughtful for a moment before regarding him "She has also asked that I attend this adventure as well, hence both my meetings on the morrow being of such importance."




Myth had hoped his unease was just nerves but deep down he had known better. Kali simply confirmed that which he felt and he could only acknowledge all that she had to say on the matter.

"Were it even within my power I would not coupe you up here. I probably more than anyone understand the need to find ones center in trying times. I also understand the driving force behind most if not all of what you do." He accepted the small bag and held it in his hand as his eyes drifted towards the doors of his room briefly before shifting once more to his daughter.

"Your attendance of the procession is the only burden of formality that  I wish or intend to trouble you with. Seek the answers you need in your place of solace." He held up the pouch before her and smiled slightly before slipping it away "I will ensure that these are exactly where they need to be, and I will leave explicit instruction for your mother as to their use."

He took in a long breath looking towards the window with his piercing emerald gaze. "It has been a long time since I have felt this.... anxious. I had hoped that I was simply suffering from ill tempers do to the constant political posturing in the capital, but the more time I spend here the more uneasy I become. This festival has meaning and purpose to the people of this city, more so than I think they realize."

His eyes shifted to her once more "A festival of a lifetime for a city that has seen much trial and tribulation..." He did not feel the need to  put the rest of his thoughts into words.
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Jun 17, 2016 12:10 pm


As Rose spoke he lifted an eyebrow and then nodded, "Knowing Kali as we all do, she is surely hedging her bets and planning who and what will bring her the most success."

He emphasized the word 'her', Kali wasn't being bashful anymore about her selfishness in her pursuits, it was becoming more and more clear that she had a purpose and was only including others so that the end result would be a positive one. The Everwinter would certainly be a valuable artifact for the city defenses, they all understood that, but it was only serendipity that placed it within the same location at whatever else Kali was really after.

"Well then, it will be an honor to continue under your command. I would Recommend Sir Riley Tanner as my replacement during our absence, he has been by my side during the entire rebuilding process and knows the Silver Dragons well. They have a tight, mutual respect, and I believe he will fill the gap nicely." He looked at her a moment, she would see the slight hesitation in his face however it was a question he desperately wanted to ask, "Have you thought about who would stand in Command during your absence?"



She nodded as her father spoke and she responded, "I know it may seem odd, my giving you those even though I have given you, mother and Shaer a ring that grants you the same access. These are different however, they work instantly, there is zero lag time in their activation, and they know their targets."

She smiled again, a genuine smile, the kind she only gave behind closed doors and typically only to her father or her brother. She stepped forward and gave her father a very warm and loving hug, sighing heavily into his clothing, and possibly, though he could not be completely certain, a couple tears. After a moment she stepped back and nodded her head, the smile turned to one of sadness, almost to say she was concerned for him and her family.

"Thank you father, for taking some time. We don't... we don't get to talk much anymore, I do appreciate this."

It was a rare crack in her armor, and it only showed for Myth, "I will be on my way then, please give Shaer a kiss tomorrow for me, and tell Mother that I love her."

With that her face changed back to that of a stoic and serious Wizard. She grabbed her staff and turned back to Myth, "I will see you tomorrow at our meeting with Lady Rose."

She faded from view and in the distance Myth would see the top most window in her tower illuminate with lamp light simultaneously to her disappearing before him.

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Mon Jun 20, 2016 10:27 am


Rose considered Trystan's question for a moment and shook her head "Truth be told I am unsure of who might stay in my stead. Until my meeting with the other commanders of the rose tomorrow is finished it I am unable to even begin to consider the matter."

She looked up and saw the look on his face and shook her head. "I wish I could further elaborate on the matter Trystan but it will have to wait. All will become clear soon enough my friend."

She walked past and placed her hand on his shoulder "The hour grows late and I must retire for the evening lest my hand maiden hunt me down." With a slight nod Rose departed through the door descending into the keep.




The fact that Kali was uncharacteristically emotional weighed heavy upon him. She came from good blood and her instincts had and would serve her well. He was certain that they all felt it in their bones. None would rest easy while their enemies lurked in the shadows. Myth pulled out the pouch that his daughter had given him once more and sighed watching the light in the tower for a short time before retiring for the evening.
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Sun Jun 26, 2016 10:40 am


As the sun rose over Heartlund the lingering smell of burned wood from the hundreds of fires and smoked meats still permeated the air. Most of the town was sleeping, except for those who needed to be up. Trystan rode his horse through the streets along the northern wall of the central Keep. He nodded to many of his men, others he would stop and speak with about the previous night. All in all it was a fairly quiet evening for the City Watch. Trystan still had an uneasy feeling in his stomach, speaking with Commander Rose didn't put him at ease, if anything it only gave him more questions. Finally he came to the city wall and dismounted, walking up the massive stone stairs to the gate battlements he spoke with the gate commander, "My Lord Trystan, we only had a small handful of people enter through the North Gate last evening, and a light came on again in the tower."

Trystan nodded and spoke, "Yes, word is Kali left her quarters in the Keep and returned to her tower, it is nothing to fear."

"What if she means to..."

Trystan looked at the man who slinked back slightly, "She intends the city no harm, do you think Commander Rose would allow her into the Keep proper if there was any doubt as to her allegiance?"

The man swallowed hard and spoke, "It's just she is..."

Trystan nodded before the man could speak, "I know."

With a nod the Gate Commander handed Trystan the report and went back to the upper gate house. Trystan placed the reports in his pack and looked out at the tower. He stared for a long time, the seamless, black stone didn't even seem to cast shadows, it just absorbed the light and refused to let it reflect back onto the landscape. With a sigh he walked down to the street, mounted his horse and continued his morning patrol, going to all ten of the city gates before heading back to the Keep to report in with Commander Rose. He wasn't sure if she would be in her office yet however he went, as he arrived the door was open but Commander Rose was not yet present, Larissa was however, and Trystan spoke to her politely, "Good morrow Larissa, how are you doing today?"



Rorie looked out the window towards the Keep. His eyes focused on the main tower, knowing that was the place his betraying sister was staying. He felt the anger within him, but kept it in check, now was not the time for doing anything hasty or stupid. After some calming breaths his life of discipline allowed him to calm himself and he turned, looking at Piramay's bed. He had not even heard her awaken. She was sitting on the edge of the bed and looking at him, studying him.

Inclining his head respectfully he spoke, "Good morning my merchant wife."

With a sarcastic smile, the joke shared between them he looked out at the Keep again, "I estimate we have two more days worth of selling before the cart is empty, we need to focus on getting enough of the materials into the Keep itself. The guards are easy enough to give tokens of gratification to, but I would like to go further."

He looked at Piramay and spoke, "I would love to give a bottle directly to my sister, or my niece, they could bring it in and be among the first to feel the pain of it's ever burning fire."

She would see the calm in his eyes, but also the thirst for revenge. After he inhaled deeply he spoke, "I promised you I would not do anything rash or stupid, and I won't... but I must do something."

They were strange words, simple, almost peasant like, but she would see the calm in his face, he was being truthful, but there was also the lingering question, would he be able to be at his most effective until this thirst was quenched?

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Mon Jun 27, 2016 7:42 am


The days preceding the festival had been busy and Larissa  had been pulling double time keeping the lady of the keep abreast of the various activities of the keep. With a sigh she was closing the doors to the commander's office when Sir Trystan approached and greeted her. She surmised that he had arrived to deliver his morning reports. She could think of no soldier more dedicated or loyal in all of Heartlund. She perked up with a slight grin and bowed to the knight before speaking.

"I am doing quite well this day Sir Trystan. The sun still rises to greet us and thus I can not complain."

She had in her hands what looked to be the remnants of the lady's breakfast. Amazingly for a change the tray looked mostly eaten.

"As is her custom the lady has gone to the chapel for her morning prayers before her meetings begin for the day. I don't imagine she will be to much longer but you just never know when it comes to divine communion. "She flashed a small smile.



She was impressed that he was showing considerable effort to control the burning anger deep within his core. Still there was the momentary spark that seemed to sneak out at the onset. His dedication to seeing this task through properly was a relief to a point but she still wondered how long he could maintain his composure.

"I would advise against direct interaction with your kin dear husband. Both your sister and niece are very accomplished wizards and as powerful as your potion is I am not inclined to test their ability to detect us in close proximity. There is also the matter that your sister is rarely without her prince. I need not remind you of his ability to read the emotional state and body language of people, a skill his daughter has also inherited."

She knew he would have a response and grinned devilishly "We need not give our wares to them directly. We simply need to get them into the hands of their agents. They are after all here as diplomats and have certain appearances to keep up. When one is a visiting dignitary one rarely goes into the markets oneself to look at the wares of the bazaar and purchase them." her smile broadened "You have servants do that for you."
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:31 am


Trystan was surprised to see how much food was eaten, clearly the Commander was famished when she was brought the tray. As he looked up at Larissa and she responded he nodded and spoke, "Aye, the responses of the gods can sometimes take quite a while... especially with such a decision looming for her."

He and Larissa shared a knowing glance and he looked at her again, "Will you be at the meeting with Kali today? I assume you would be unless the Commander has you set for other tasks."

With a nod of confirmation from her he smiled and continued, "Good, we will need all the eyes in the room we can get. Though I trust Kali, I also don't. She will most likely be pressing the agenda of going south to Ice Wall sooner than later, a prospect I am both looking forward to and dreading. Just... well, if you could just help me watch and listen for any hidden messages I would appreciate it.


Rorie looked around at Piramay as she spoke and he nodded, "I will most certainly heed that advice my wife, my mouth has simply run away with me again. Since my, rescue, from the Abyss, I can't always keep a clear focus on my tongues utterances. I promised I would not do anything stupid and until the time was right, I maintain to keep that promise to you, after all I do owe you my life."

He turned and looked out the window again and spoke as he stared at the massive gray stones of the Keep, "Of course you are right, we will most certainly not see the Prince or Princess in the market, all I ask is that you help me keep an eye out for those who might be them, they shouldn't be hard to spot with all their pomp and regality they strut around with."

He turned again, a genuine smile on his face, though the disguise he wore did not resemble him in the least she would still see him in his smile, "Come my wife, let us to the common room and see if we can get anymore information out of that fat Inn Keeper down there."

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Jul 01, 2016 5:31 am


"Trust that the lady shares many of the same concerns of you and your men and for good reason Sir Trystan."

She shifted her eyes to his pack and back "Might I take the morning reports Sir Knight? I am afraid they may not be addressed immediately this day but I will make sure they will be presented at the soonest opportunity."

She was accepting the morning reports from Trystan as several figures rounded the end of the hall. The knight commanders had arrived and were dressed in full formal regalia. Larissa turned to meet them and bowed gracefully before flashing a smile. "Good morning my lords. The Lady's morning worship has run long but I assure you she will return shortly, and she has requested that I see you gentlemen in and tend to your needs until her arrival."



"I am sure he has many tales for us this fine morning after such a day of frivolity and festivities." She slipped out of their room following just behind Rorie as they descended into the common room.

A variety of patrons were strung about ranging from freshly awakened to those nursing a hangover. As they had now begun the first full day of the festival she knew that things would only grow from there. As Rorie had reminded her they had two more days worth of wares to spread about the city. It was an overly elaborate distraction but it needed to be so they could get to the real prize unnoticed by Kali.

Her thoughts settled on the wizard as they descended into the commons. With her senses she could feel the magics that Kali and her mother had worked into the lands around the city. She was certain that the knights would not be appreciative of some of the wards. The woman had prepared her a great many defenses for the city and her tower.Admittedly she was impressed with the work Kali had done and almost admired her for it.

As they drew up to the bar she took up a soft smile and greeted the innkeep warmly.
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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Fri Jul 01, 2016 5:44 pm


The Innkeeper smiled warmly as the two pulled up at the bar, "Ahhh, Master and Misses Underhill, so good to see you again. Can I get you your usual for breakfast?"

Rorie and Piramay both nodded and he turned, motioning to one of the serving lassies who disappeared into the kitchen. Turning back to the two he spoke again, "I can't help but notice that you have been off early and back late every day this whole week! I hope you are selling plenty of wares. I trust your evening was well?"

Rorie smiled and nodded, "Yes sir, we have been doing well. I suspect we only have two days worth of wares, certainly selling things faster than we had anticipated."

A slight look crossed the Innkeepers face and he spoke, "Our agreement was for three weeks, I do hope that you will stay if you run out of wares, Heartlund is a fine place to..."

Rorie smiled and interrupted, "I assure you sir, whether we stay or not I will compensate you for the full three weeks we arranged for. I would not cheat another businessman because my wife and I were blessed to sell all our product before we intended to do so. It will give us time to see more of the city instead of hawking from the merchant square."

He leaned in and spoke, "And how about you my friend? By the looks of this common room you must have done well yourself last night aye?"

The Innkeeper laughed and patted his fat belly, "We were busting through the seams last night, almost thought we were going to have to turn people away, that was until the light came on in the tower."

Rorie looked at Piramay and then to the Innkeep, "Tell me more friend."

The Innkeep leaned in and spoke in a lower tone, "Last night, around 11, the topmost window in that blasted tower illuminated, apparently the Wizard has returned. We haven't seen anything in that tower for weeks and she decides to come back during the festival. I don't know, Wizards is strange folk, always showing up at weird times for weird reasons."

He leaned back and continued, "Well as soon as that light came on half my patrons scatted to Taverns and Pubs deeper in the town, the others who were too drunk to notice kept on drinking, but they didn't drink as much. Ahhh, what's to be done, we still made plenty of coin last night, I just hope the dark ones arrival in her tower doesn't keep people away for the rest of the week, I'd hate to be the only Innkeep in town not making his share."

Rorie nodded and glanced at Piramay then back to their host, "I am sure it will be fine my friend."

He huffed and spoke, "Begging your pardon sir, but you weren't here when those towers first went up, there were three you see, one made of fire, one of purple smoke, and the one still standing. Scared the guts out of all of us. Then there was the battle of course, dragons flying about, Elves and soldiers fighting them three Wizards... well it's something I will never forget."

The man looked at Piramay and flushed slightly, "I beg your pardon Misses, I certainly hope I am not frightening you with what I am saying."


Trystan handed the reports to Larissa without hesitation and was about to say something when the Knight Commanders arrived. Trystan saluted and nodded his head respectfully as they made their way past him and Larissa lead them into Lady Roses office. He turned after a smile and nod to Larissa and began to walk down the hall. Suddenly a voice slipped into his ear from behind and he turned quickly.


"Off to the tower Sir Knight?"

Trystan looked at Kali as she stepped from seemingly out of nowhere. He was slightly confused as to how he passed her without noticing her. She could see his look of confusion on his face and her crocked smiled lifted up off her chin. He furrowed his brows slightly and spoke, "I have no time for games Kali, I have duties to perform, especially if I am to go with you to Icewall."

She stepped towards him and looked up into his eyes, "Always so committed to honor, duty and procedure. So be it Sir Knight, see to your mornings rounds, reports and inspections. I am not here to see you anyway."

He looked at her and sighed, "I suppose you are here for the meeting?"

Her face was straight and plain, "Of course, why else would I come to this stuffy, stinky, security lacking Keep?"

He looked about to say something and her eyebrows lifted slightly, anticipating a quip, but he stayed silent. After a moment he spoke, "You know, if I am to accompany you this constant jabbing needs to cease."

She laughed aloud and brought the back of her hand to her mouth as she closed her eyes and shook her head slightly, "Oh my dear Knight of the Sword, as if you had any authority to make such statements."

He bit his lip and swelled up as he inhaled deeply. As he puffed up she wasn't the least bit intimidated, not only because she knew him well enough that he would never do anything aggressive towards her, but also because she knew without a shadow of doubt that he would be dead before his hand could strike out against her, "There, there Sir Knight, I only jest. You should relax, take a break and find some rest. You used to be far much more fun to be around."

She stepped past him and he spoke, "What is that supposed to mean?"

She stopped and only turned her head to look back at him over her shoulder, "Exactly what I said, nothing more, nothing less."

She walked into the antechamber of Lady Roses office and nodded as she walked passed Larissa with a courteous nod. She was always friendly towards Larissa, she liked the women, though she barely knew her and didn't even know what it was about her that gave her no reason to treat her like the others. Stepping into the room the Knights immediately went quiet and bristled at her entrance. With a slight, twisted smile she spoke, "Well, Lady Rose obviously isn't here yet, looks like we'll just have to endure one another until she arrives."

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PostSubject: Re: Book 2 - Ch10: The Retrospection Before the Storm   Thu Jul 07, 2016 4:01 am


The doors to the chapel and Lady Rose stepped into the hall and was immediately flanked by her guards. As they passed through the halls of the keep heading towards her office one spoke in a low tone "The knight commanders have arrived and await you in your office m'lady... alas they also wait with the black wizard as well."

Rose simply nodded in response to this news. She took a moment to look out of a couple windows and noted that she had been in the chapel longer than expected. Matters to be handled this day required that she seek some solace and divine guidance and her guests would have to understand that one could not rush such communion.

As they rounded the corner she saw a flustered looking Trystan and sighed inwardly. She could wager the cause of the look upon his face. She offered him a brief smile before he took notice of her and snapped into a salute. She inclined her head and returned the gesture, but she could not stop far even a moment of idle chit chat. She was uncertain how long Kali had been with commanders and she was certain they were all getting itchy.

The heavy wooden door swung open as Rose kept her pace quick and deliberate. She snapped off the clasps and handed off her cloak to Larrisa as she passed. Her eyes shifted to the knights and Kali. If there were any more ice in the eyes of both parties she was certain she could extinguish the flaming lake outside her town.

Walking behind her desk she regarded each before speaking "Greetings to you Lords and Lady" she inclined her head before taking her seat before them "I do apologize for my delay. Let us skip the pleasantries and introductions and get straight to business."



With a small smile Piramay shook her head "Nay my good sir. Though the events were certainly tragic for you and the residents of this city I still find the stories to be most fascinating, tragic, but fascinating."

She looked around the room shaking her head "I am curious how much is truth and what has become exaggerated. My somewhat limited knowledge of wizards always suggested that such grand displays of magic were nearly impossible save for the gods themselves." she shrugged slightly "But I am nothing more than the wife of a potion maker so I do not presume to know much."
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