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Her Arrival



It felt like she had been riding for months. The rain didn't help either. She pulled her cloak tighter around her as the wind whipped at the soaking wet strands of hair that slipped out from its clip to lash at her already chapped cheeks. She saw faint glows at the base of the mountain in the distance. It wouldn't be long now. She kept herself warm with the images of a crackling fire that awaited her. She slapped her wet Nightmare's neck with her wet gloves and urged him on.

Finally the faint glows became bright flickering candles in the lanterns that lined the small cobblestone road, hanging from old wood posts. Riding past the small town dwellings until she found the stable, and ignoring the boy that offered his assistance, she rode Shade right into a stall and slowly dismounted.

The ache of what felt like a thousand days of riding filled her as her feet hit the straw, now in her mind, skipping the fire and meal in the inn, she only pictured a soft bed. Her weary arms hefted her saddle off Shade's grateful back and slung it across the stall door. The bit and bridle came next, which she handed to the stable boy who was waiting in earnest. His eyes gleaming at the Nightmare with interest. Unhitching a pouch from her belt she handed it to the boy.

"Do not put any male horses in the stalls near him, and feed him only red meat, bear if you have it." She shrugged off her soaking cloak and set it on a hay bale. Then clasping the sides of the Nightmares long face she put her forehead to his, whispered a small phrase then turned and exited the stall.

"The Inn?" she said to the boy and set out in the direction he pointed. Rain hammered down the fabric of her robe that was saved by the cloak, soaking it anew, but the brightly painted wooden sign that swung back and forth on its post was all she cared about.

Stepping into the inn was like stepping into a warm embrace, she paused there a moment, feeling the heat seep into her bones as she looked around the Inn. How is it possible? She wondered to herself as memories of her last visit matched the decor exactly. Nothing had changed, not even that painting of a girl with golden hair that hung over the fireplace had moved. She stepped over to the fireplace, rubbing her hands in front of her before turning to hear the Innkeeper.

"Staying long in Delucia miss?" Apparently they still didn't get many visitors. Thats what she and Ari liked about it. Privacy. She could still picture the hours they killed drinking ale and tossing dice, laughing over adventure stories and the many near misses. As her body warmed, she felt exhaustion take over, even in the few steps over to the bar.

"Mhmm" Was her non specific reply. "I'll need a room for the night, with fireplace, and have the serving wenches send up a roast pig and ale."

"Rooms with fireplaces are reserved for high paying customers miss-?" She unhooked another pouch from her belt and dropped it on the bartop.

"Lady." She corrected "Lady Tatiana Daene." The Innkeeper swooped up the pouch and nodded to the girl at his side.

"You heard the Lady, Abigail. Show her to her room." He turned and smiled that Innkeeper smile as he hooked the pouch onto his own belt. "And if there's anything else you need mi'Lady.." Tat didn't much care about any further frivolities and turned to follow the girl without another word.

Later, dressed in a fresh robe and wrapped in the blanket from the bed, Tatiana sat in front of the fire's hearth. She had scooped ashes from the metal bin next to the hearth and sprinkled them onto the stone, forming a circle with in a thick line. Then to the circle she laid different gems; amber, sapphire, tourmalines, diamonds and rubies, pressing them into the thick ash of the circle, and linking them with lines drawn by her fingertip through the ash until a rune symbol came into focus. Taking another pouch from her belt, she slipped her fingers in, pulling out a pinch of a dark sparkly dust and scattered it on top of the rune symbol. Opening her hand wide, she whispered a word and shot a fireball onto the symbol causing the entire circle to erupt into flames.

"You have arrived.." Came a low throaty voice from the flames.
"Indeed." She replied.
"Is anyone aware?"
"We will know in the morning my Lord."
"Very good. Take your rest, regain your strength and contact me when you have more." The voice paused.. and Tat felt a new chill creep along her skin as she thought she heard whispered words but could not determine the sounds.
"Do not fail me Tatiana." And with that the flames were suddenly doused, the circle of ash, now a grey smudge on the dark stone of the hearth. Tat plucked the gems and deposited them back in her pouch, before standing and returning to her bed. As she lay her head upon the coarse pillow casing, exhaustion took her and she fell into a deep slumber.

((if anyone is interested in joining this rp post, feel free))

Magdalena Chef

Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
Abigail watched the woman from her perch in the corner and wondered why she wasn't wearing a cloak. It had been pouring for three days. The lady stood framed in the doorway, long hair plastered to her face, clothes clinging to skin and surveyed the room. As she crossed to the fireplace the Innkeeper shot Abby a look that made her bolt off her stool and step quickly to his side, eyes downcast. They didn't get too many visitors here and Abigail was happy to have a job. Her mother would kill her if she lost it.

"Staying long in Delucia, miss?" Abigail listened to him ask that question and knew the real meaning behind it had more to do with gold than how long she was staying. Abby studied her toes trying not to stare.

"I'll need a room for the night with a fireplace and...." Abigail stiffened at his side.

"Rooms with fireplaces are for high paying customers, miss --?" he trailed off. Abby's cheeks went crimson red. He really did need to learn a little finesse in situations like these – especially when customers were a rarity.

"Lady Tatiana Daene," she corrected him. Abigail bit back a giggle. Her eyes widened when the woman dropped a pouch heavy with gold onto the counter.

"You heard the Lady, Abigail. Show her to her room." Abigail dropped a quick curtsy and hurried around to the other side of the bar. She slowly climbed the stairs and held the door to the room open, dropping another quick curtsy. Lady Daene stepped through and closed it.

Abby raced downstairs to find some fresh towels and linens. The few left in the room would not be enough for her to dry off. Wow! A Lady...not just any ordinary, everyday person, but a real lady! "Fairytales and storybooks!" Abby mused, romanticizing it as she sorted through the linens in the chest. She decided that some were too rough, some too threadbare, others too dingy looking for a noblewoman.

Finally, when she had a pile she deemed acceptable enough for Lady Tatiana –Abby climbed the stairs again. As she was about to knock on the door she heard voices from within, one a man's. Furrowing her brow, she placed the pile of towels next to the door and went back downstairs. She hadn't seen a man come in with her. Abby shrugged, when the rain let up a little she'd go to the stable and ask John about it. She sat on her stool looking at the fireplace and wondered for the millioneth time who the little girl in the painting could be....

Noble Beast

Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
*Katrina Cole dashed by the Inn in Delucia, smiling softly as she remembered her hard-won freedom*

"How come she gets to go to Skara Brae to meet some Judge of Yew..." Katrina wiggled her hands & body in a goofy dance. "Ooooo, whooptie do." She stopped and glared at her grandam's back. I can't distract that clever old hag! "...and I can't go on a Doom Run with the Old Man?!!!"

Exhausted with her captive, Selene rose from her Crystal Ball. "Stop shouting!" She rose but maintained her watch over Claudia. WildStar was talking to her at the FaireGrounds of Skara. "Because you are punished!" What had WildStar said? Why is Claudia hugging the Duchess of Dawn & crying? Selene panicked; gave the signal to Lauriel; and, Lauriel journeyed to kidnap her Priestess & Regent.

"Mama thought ya might do this. Sit down!" Trina shouted extra loud in defiance.

Selene turned around to face Trina. Spot pinned Selene into her chair, forcing her to sit.

Trina removed Claudia's Journal from her BackPack to display her victory. "She gave me this before she left. I am holding mama hostage, not YOU!' Trina shouted again while Spot roared to push the point. "I am alpha female of this house now! I AM NOT on punishment any more! I AM going to do Doom Runs & Taming Hour! AND..." Trina paused & leveled her eyes to gaze into Selene's. "Spot isn't gunna letcha hurt me no more!"

Spot growled.

Trina with Spot in tow left the house.

Selene smiled proudly.

[Welcome back! Doom Runs (DoomTrain Meets at Delucia Mint) every Sunday 11am PST & Taming Hour @ 8pm PST.]

Magdalena Chef

Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
(Ack! mea culpa. Sorry, I misunderstood the invite to join the rp thread. I thought we were continuing with the original story. Didn't mean to hijack a character [Abigail] out of your original post. Apologies!)



Streaks of yellow light shone through the thin linen curtains, warming her face until her cheeks pinkened from the heat. Her hair, normally hung about her face in soft auburn curls, was now unrecognizable in knotted clumps and stuck masses, the result of the rain and the days on end of traveling by horseback. Tatiana longed for a nice steamy bath but knew her chances of getting one were slim at best. Kicking back the heavy coverlet, she stood and stretched, feeling sparks of pain shoot up the backs of her thighs, another gift of her travels. Stepping to the wash basin and pitcher she poured the fresh water from the pitcher into the basin, then lifted the basin over her head, dumping the contents. After the initial shock and jolt of the cold water, she chuckled, feeling refreshed. Nearly twenty minutes later, her wet hair twisted in a tight braid that hung down her back, Tatiana sat at the small writing desk scribbling the same message over and over on several papyrus, rolling them into scrolls and sealing with a hot wax stick. She stood with a swirl of sapphire robes and rang the bell for the serving girl. When Abigail appeared, Tatiana showed her in and stepped back to the desk, dumping the scrolls into a satchel and latching the toggle.

"I'll need these delivered." She said with her back still turned to the girl. "By hand." She glanced at her then from over her right shoulder before turning towards her. She caught the girl peeking at the smudge of ash on the fireplace and pursed her lips. When she approached her, Tat cleared her throat quietly and set the heavy satchel in her hands followed by a pouch of coin. The girl seemed to stand there, staring at her in bewilderment so she placed both hands on the girls shoulders, turned her gently round and ushered her out the door.

"Have the kitchens prepare my breakfast and tell the stable boy to get my mount ready." She added with a polite smile before shutting the door firmly behind her.

((Mag- I dont mind at all that you took on the role of abigail. Anyone was welcome to join the post ;) ))


Lord Malcom Duvall sat across a valorite slab table that covered as his writing desk. It was scattered with half wound papyrus scrolls, flat stacks of reports and beneath it all was a giant map of the known world. As his squire, Hackam, came bustling into the corner of his tower, Malcom's eyes met his with withering patience.

"I asked not to be disturbed." He said in a gravelly voice. Hackam was still new in his service and Malcom had not as yet decided whether he was best suited for a squire or dragon fodder. Hackam ducked into a quick bow as he turned a scroll over and over again in his hands.

"Y-yes M'Lo-ord I.. I'm soo... please acc-accept.. " Malcom huffed a sigh and leaned forward and snatched the papyrus out of his grip.

"On with it boy." Hackam gulped and tried to swallow his stammer.

"Sso so ss sorry M'lord-d I dd ddiddn't wish to dd dd- ddisturb.. yyou" Definitely dragon fodder, Malcom thought as he waved the boy away. He tossed the scroll on the pile of others waiting to be read. Retrieving his quill he had scribbled another line when the seal of the papyrus caught in the light of the flickering candle.

Malcom jumped back, knocking the magnecian arm chair onto its side. He stood there, fingertips sliding over and over the soft feather tip of his quill as he stared at the seal. In the back of his mind he doubted they had killed him. It had all seemed too easy. Still not retrieving the scroll, Malcom turned and stepped to the tower window. This was why he had chosen the small stone tower as his workspace. From the top window he could see the borders of his own properties and the surrounding lands of Minoc.

"Hackam!!" He bellowed and the squire came running into his office, sure that his Master was done with him for the disturbance.

"The chest in my bedroom, bring it to me." Hackam's eyes grew wide as he was told specifically not to touch the chest in the past, but eager to please he was quickly out the door and into the floor above. Malcom stood out at the window once more, his eyes searching the tree line. When Hackam returned, he motioned to his desk and then the door. Once the door was shut, he stepped up to the chest, opening it slowly as the light from the glowing communication crystal began to pulse.

"Kyriann, old friend, if you can hear me.. I need your help. I have received the Dark Seal. I do not know how much time I have left."


"Sossa!" Emily had dipped her hands deep into the bowl of flour and goats milk, kneading it slowly with her fingers. A distinct grin crossing her face as she felt the familiar squish and revelled in the texture.

"SOOOSssa!!" She called again. Kings name where was that girl?

Sossa was currently leaning against the door frame of the Inn, a wicked smirk on her lips as she held the cook's son's apron behind her back.

"Give it over.." he grinned back, both arms wrapping around her torso. She giggled and twisted left, her grip fast on the apron cord.

"Try harder." She said, eyes gleaming as this time he came in for a fresh tasting of her lips. He crooked his finger under her arm, tickling the sensitive area at her elbow, causing her to squeal. Somehow it made her hearing better too for she gasped, dropped the apron and darted into the kitchens to answer her.

"Aye Mahm, right here." Sossa caught a glimpse of a boy waiting at the kitchens back gate, she fetched the scroll from his hands, patted him on the head for a tip and sent him off. "Ye've a message."

Emily exhaled slow and long. "Aye I know that ye knitwit, bring me the jar of honey while you're fetchin'." She said, taking in the rosy cheeks and rosier swollen lips. She'll have to have another word with her boy it seemed.

Sossa spun on her heel and nearly danced into the pantry to retrieve the item.

"Youth." Emily muttered before Sossa returned, twisting her wrists to further knead the batter. Sossa set the honey on the white flour powdered counter top and looked with interest at the scroll of papyrus. As she turned it over in her hands, idly wondering at the red sparkle in the wax seal, she looked up in utter shock to see Emily passed out on the kitchen floor.

"Cail come quick!" She shouted to the cook's son as she knelt before Emily, fanning her with her apron. When he appeared, he stepped over to his mother and lightly patted her cheeks. Emily's eyes opened to the pair of them looking down on hers.

"Ma whatsit?" Cail began, but Emily sat up quick as a rabbit, snatched the scroll from Sossa's hands and flung it into the nearby fire. Both Sossa and Cail looked on curiously but Emily had her ways and while they looked at the now white tufts of ash in the cooking fire, Emily stood back up, wiped her hands on her apron and mashed the dough with ferocity.

"Dont ya'll have work to do?"

Magdalena Chef

Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
Abby stretched and rubbed her neck, sitting on the stool and sleeping on the stool were two completely different things. MacKenzie wouldn't let her go home last night -- not after Lady Daene had shown up with her heavy gold purse. She smoothed her skirts as best she could, tied her unruly hair back with a piece of leather cord, sat and waited. The soft tinkle of bells a few minutes later signaled that Lady Tatiana had awakened.

Abigail knocked gently and was ushered into the room. Truly, the woman did look like something out of a fairytale. Her breath caught in her throat before she composed herself and quietly waited. Her eyes darted around the room looking for any sign of the man she'd heard the night before and settled on the fireplace. She scowled, something was amiss.

Abby jumped when she realized Lady Tatiana was standing in front of her. "By hand," she finished saying, pressing a satchel into her arms and then handing her a coin purse. Her mouth hung open in disbelief. When no words came, the woman gingerly spun her around and walked her out the door.


"By the Virtues that's a lot o'money! Is it fer you or ya givin it to Mac?" John sat perched on the door to an empty stall looking down at her.

"I dunno," Abigail shrugged. It was more money than she'd see in months of working here, and MacKenzie would never know if she took some out for herself. "Giving it to MacKenzie," she said realizing that the matter was already decided, "it would be wrong to keep it."

"You're outta yer mind Ab! Take a few pieces, he'll never know. Give it to me, I'll take some," he grabbed for the pouch and she danced away. "And all ya got to do is deliver some letters?"

"By hand, and some of these look like they're pretty far from here." She pulled a scroll from the satchel looking at the seal and shuddered. "I'll ask ol' Mac what he wants to do when I give him the purse." She turned to leave.

"I still say yer crazy fer handin' all that to 'im! Give it here, I'll deliver 'em myself!" John's voice faded as she walked back to the inn.


MacKenzie dug through the satchel scowling. He picked up a few scrolls, looked at them and threw them back in the bag. Abigail had no idea what he was doing. "That it?" Abby nodded, then slowly pulled the purse from her pocket. Mac's face changed from glower to glory in seconds. Pulling a few letters from the bag he thrust them at Abigail, "You'll be delivering these and right quick too," he said gruffly. Abby watched as he tied the purse to his belt and walked out. Not even one coin she thought.

Noble Beast

Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
Trina waited for her report from the stable boy. She had placed The Boy in Delucia during the Bane Wars after his parents were murdered by the Britannians, "liberating" the city from its own citizens returning home from a spiritual training with The Bane of Lies (VirtueBane). The Chosen Family of Bane were not welcome in their hometown of Minoc but The Boy would be safe here despite his parents' choices.

Stabled & Quartered

The Boy had not heard the woman or the NightMare Mount ride in the rain; the snort of the tamed Beast was their only betrayal, & the pounding of raindrops masked even that. Stricken with fear & thrill, The Boy composed himself and the shaking of his body & bladder. He held his hands out in greeting & to offer assistance. Being weary, she ignored him. He proceeded to conduct his duties with pride while she handed him the Beast's equipment.

Wait until Sister Trina hears about this! He thought. So excited that I might pee me pants! Holy crap, this bag of gold is heavy! He remained composed while his mind raced & mistress bid heart-felt affection to her mythical mount. Good night to you too great Lady. He fought the urge to cry & now he would fight the need to smile.

Shade released his held load to emphasis his mistress's point & to test The Boy.

The Boy guffawed. The NightMare snorted. "Dung Duty is an honor my friend!" The Boy told the Beast. "That there is Gold for me!" The Boy grabbed a shovel & scooped the fine dung into an old feedbag lined with BeeWax to prepare its journey to HearthFire. "This here! Is Gold to me. You will be well fed!"

Shade inspected The Boy more intently.

The Boy then wrung the Lady's rain-soaked cloak over the remaining excrement & cleaned the floor with hay. "I will get some fresh bear for ya after I clean up. If ya wanna make water then ya can go outside or I'll clean it, yer choice. Your stall aint got no door." He talked to his ward while he placed the soiled hay into a cedarwood compost box & the Lady's cloak near his CookFire.