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 Rogue and El- A Chance encounter

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:41 pm


Armeno also followed the child, leading Veloxpes along rather than riding him.
'At least we get to see the mage,' he muttered to Static, who was now looking just as annoyed as him. The tunnel was much shorter than either of the others, and they soon emerged into another chamber. This one was furnished; in fact, it looked almost like a normal room other than what the walls, floor and ceiling were made of. They wound through six more chambers, all getting more and more lavishly decorated, though largely with furs and intricately carved wooden items rather than gold or gemstones. The interconnecting tunnels were much roomier, and everywhere was better lit. Armeno saw more slightly green children flitting about, some bearing food, others reading as they walked, and some just drifting. None were older than ten or so, the youngest about five, but they all held themselves like adults, and the words they exchanged were not childish; they had the voices of adults too. More than once, Armeno saw them grabbing a handful of wall and eating it absentmindedly. Finally they emerged into another cavern and the exit shut off behind them.

The cavern was small compared to many of them, only about five square metres of floorspace. Dark and shiny wood was laid down to make a hard path across the floor, which Armeno walked across. Velox's hooves clopped loudly. A wooden chair sat on the other side of the room, carved with immense detail. The whole thing was fairly cliched. The room generally looked more luxurious than the others, though Armeno was not sure how, and it was lit with a deeper light, due to the fact that ll the candles were surrounded by dark green tinted glass. The occupant of the chair could only be about three. The girl sat perfectly straight but with her legs curled underneath her. She was eating a small fruit, something like a minature peach, and she now passed it over to the boy who had led them there. He promptly left. The girl leant forwards, smiling.
'So,' she said. She was dressed in lavish furs, which didn't seem to be of any animal Armeno recognised. He looked up at her a little coldly.
'We're here, as you wished,' he said.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:13 pm

“And is getting to see the mage actually a good thing?” she muttered back, her face dark. She was still having troubles leading Tam, but the horse quietened whenever they were lead into a larger cavern. The noise the two horses’ hooves should have made was deadened by the candyfloss underfoot. With each chamber they passed through, Static’s opinion of the decorator decreased- Whoever it was, they didn’t seem to have many new ideas- Although she had to admit, some of the furniture that was there was quite handsome.

As they started to pass more children, Static’s anger turned to a little worry. What sort of magic could hold so many children under its sway? One certainly strong enough to control Static, and Armeno too from the looks of it, no matter how strong the elf seemed to be. Although she did learn one thing- The walls were edible. As they passed through another tunnel, she surreptitiously took a handful for herself, pulling a few strands loose with her fingers before tasting the tiniest bite.
“This thing is made from that sweet food you get at the summer fair.” Static couldn’t quite remember what it was- It was so long since she had eaten it, but the taste and texture was somehow familiar to such a scene. Before she could take another piece though, to try and pinpoint the taste exactly they were lead into one final room, the dead sound of their feet suddenly loud as wood became underfoot.

Static came to a stop as she saw a child sitting in a chair, looking overly haunty for her age. This surely couldn’t be the mage that had cast such spells?

She gave a laugh. “Why, you’re just a babe! How can you cast all this magic?” Scorn was laced in her words- Not only for her surprise, but to annoy the tiny girl. If she really was the mage, then there would surely be some sort of outburst at her lack of interest.


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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:31 pm


Armeno nodded at Static's identification of the substance.
'Candyfloss,' he murmured.

The girl smiled, though her lips did not part.
'I wouldn't say I was a child, quite. But that's certainly my body. I see why you would jump to those conclusions; most people wouldn't be able to do this at any age. I suppose I'm special.' She shrugged, the mound of fur moving with her shoulders. Now, then. You're right, I did want you. I wouldn't have gone to all this trouble otherwise. Moving the cloud here from the ice plains in such a hurry wasn't easy, I can tell you.' She surveyed them silently.

Armeno narrowed his eyes at the girl. He had no idea what these children were, but he was going to treat them like adults until he found out.
'Like I say, we're here now. Why don't you just explain what you'd like and we can be off to Racksom sooner.' He was surprised she had come all the way from the ice plains; the cloud obviously could fly or teleport, then. 'I have to say, I don't see what your point was with those tigers. If you'd wanted us dead, I'm sure you could have done it by now with ease.' He felt slightly uncomfortable as he said this; they were extremely vulnerable right now.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 3:07 pm

Static decided the child was distinctly creepy. If she were her, she would have flipped out at that last comment, but no, she just sat there like a queen taking it. It was eerie, how she seemed to command such presence over the room, yet had shown nothing forthright to deserve it. Armeno was certainly behaving as though she were a queen- That or, she thought with a tingle of her spine, as though he had been enchanted himself. And there he was, stating where they were going, how the child could have killed them… How stupid could you get? She poked Tam in the side, making him dance away from her and into the elf- Maybe that would shut him up.

The young girl had sat silently in her chair as Armeno spoke, but now he had fallen silent- finally- she started to speak again, propping her head up on her hand.
“No matter, it was a test of your prowness. You proved yourself against one another, you had to prove yourselves against others. Of course, the animals had to die, but that was no great matter to me.” She waved her other hand languidly, dismissing their lives. “As it is, you are worthy, but do not make me change my mind with out of tongue comments.” Here she looked at Static, her face stern. So, the girl had felt the force of her scorn then.

“I wish you to bring me a book from Racksom. It is of great importance that it does not fall into the wrong hands. Then you will return it to me.”

“And what if we don’t?” asked Static, her face black.

“You shall die.”

“And if we succeed, what is the prize?”

“Your lives. If you bring the book to me, I shall not have to kill you.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 3:55 pm


Armeno watched and listened as Static and the girl conversed. Eventually, he said,
'I see we have little choice, otherwise I would ask why we should help you. Very well, I think we have to accept this task. Where do we find this book? What will we have to do to obtain it? Where will you be for us to pass it over? And will you help us? You have plenty of power; it would surely be cruel not to give us some aid if this task is difficult.'



The girl frowned.
'So many questions,' she murmured. 'Well, I think it's best if you get on your way to Racksom. I can send somebody with you, they won't do anything but pass messages from me. I will give you instructions as you get closer. Oh, and-' she looked at them disdainfully-'don't have any silly quarrels or let yourselves become unfit for this task.' With that, she turned away, a child of about ten appeared with a horse, looking extremely blank, and just as the room became too full half the floor vansihed and everyone except the Mage fell onto the ground a metre below. Robotically, the ten year old climbed onto the horse and positioned the animal directly behind Tamarisk.



Armeno winced as he was dropped. Picking himself up and brushing his clothes off, he said,
'I guess we'd better get going. I don't think that child's going to bother us unless there's a message, they don't exactly look there.' He suddenly noticed the cloud was floating fifty feet above them. 'Hm,' was his only comment there. Velox was looking irritated, but unharmed, and Armeno mounted the horse without difficulty. He noticed that the animal looked fresh and full of energy; he felt the same. At that moment, the child rode forwards.
'The Mage has given you energy for the ride. You will only need to stop for eat, no rest.' The voice was toneless, and the child instantly fell back once more. Armeno looked at Static.
'You ok to go?' he said.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:20 pm

Static didn’t like the tone the girl was taking, and was about to step forward and rage at her- she could feel her anger bubbling within- when she turned away again, summoning a new child. Static couldn’t tell at first whether it was a girl or a boy, its shift long and featureless, and its hair chopped short. The horse it lead was stumpy in comparison to the two warhorses that she and Armeno led, its legs short and its chestnut fur slightly unkempt. She didn’t have much time to survey it however before the floor disappeared, the wooden floorboards turning to candy and splitting under them.

She fell with a clatter of armour and belongings, the dagger she had secreted in the top of her plate mail sliding from its hiding as she landed catlike on the ground. Tam bounced as he hit the ground, stumbling a little on the leaf litter under their feet. She got to her feet, brushing the dirt off her boots and picking up the dagger, sliding it back into its place before turning to Tam and mounting. He was much more calm now that the candyfloss cloud had ejected them (so rudely) and had floated off up into the trees. He also looked suitably perky, even with his earlier fright.

As the child spoke, Static did indeed feel more invigorated- Sleepwise at least, she doubted that the Mage would have recharged her electricity levels. In fact, she felt less tired than she had in a long time- But that wasn’t saying much, considering she was constantly on the move.
“Yeah, let’s get this crap over with so I can get back to what I was doing.” She kicked Tam into a canter, heading off towards the city. They had been deposited back next to the track they had been following before, and it was just a matter of following it until they reached the city.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:45 pm


TIMESKIP: 24 HOURS

Armeno pulled up on Velox's reins as they finally reached the city gates. The horses were tireless, and they had only stopped for a few meals.
'Ok, then,' he said, and turned to the guard on the gate.
'Welcome to Racksom,' said the guard expressionlessly, quickly scanning them over. 'Be careful with that sword, any violence and you're out.' He gave the child an odd look before turning to the next person and repeating the greeting. Armeno rode on through the gate, then looked expectantly at the child, who obediently rode over and spoke again dully.
'The Mage wants a book of nursery rhymes like children have. She wants it to contain lots of them and to have illustrations.' Armeno's eyebrows raised.
'Nursery rhymes?' he said, disbelief colouring his tone.
'The Mage believes such an edition should be available from most good bookshops,' continued the child before falling back again. Armeno looked at Static.
'I don't believe this,' he said incredulously. 'Ok, where can we find a bookshop...' He hadn't been in Racksom for months, and even longer since he'd been anywhere as crowded. It made him feel uncomfortable, all the people pushing past, but it only excited the hyper-energetic Veloxpes. The Arab skittered from one foot to the next, occasionally investigating somebody or something as they passed.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 23, 2010 9:34 pm

Static slowed Tamarisk as they reached the city walls, looking up at the blank stone before them. The path had widened considerably since they had got closer to the city, finally bursting out of the close trees of the Quinsilla forests and onto a stone road, frequented by many a traveller. They got some strange looks as they rode past- Not only were they travelling much quicker than anyone else, but a woman dressed entirely in green, an elf on an obvious warhorse and a child who- if you looked closely- was a sickly colour that no human, elf or avian should ever be.

As they passed through the gates of the city, Static looked up to the inside of the walls- If it was something that was difficult to obtain, then she wouldn’t be spending any money… Take it and go was more her style. The child rode over as she inspected the defences, and she turned as expectantly as Armeno as the child started to speak.

“Are you kidding me?” they had ridden all this way under pain of death for a book about nursery rhymes? “What a joke… She can’t really believe we’re actually going to do that?” She waved a hand, dismissing the quest entirely. Already she was starting to look for a blacksmith’s shop- She needed to replace the sword she had lost a few weeks before…

“The Mage has commanded it.” The child’s voice suddenly became angry, and Static thought she could hear some undertones of the Mage’s voice layered in. Static turned back to the child, who was still as emotionless as ever on the surface, but as it spoke further, it was clear there was anger there.
“You will bring the book to the Mage immediately. Otherwise she will have to kill you both.”

Static gave a sigh.
“No getting out of then eh? Better find the first bookstore we can, and fast.” She clicked her heels against Tam’s sides, directing him back into the steady flow of those moving through the city. She had hardly been to Racksom before, and when she had, it was simply to pick up the essentials before she either headed back to Quinsilla, or out for work further into the isle.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Fri Dec 24, 2010 9:19 am


Armeno rolled his eyes at Static's frustration. He agreed with her next sentence, though, and tried to keep Velox under control as they rode through the narrow, crowded streets. He noticed several people clutching crisp new books- possibly they were near a bookshop. Sure enough, as they turned the next corner a painted sign bearing an open book came into sight. The bookshop was fairly, with a bell that tinkled whenever anybody opened the door. It had a steady flow of customers, and the ringing was near constant, quickly becoming mildly irritating. Inside, rows of books sat on dusty shelves waiting to be bought. Near the front, it was brighter and the wooden chair were polished from all the people who had sat on them looking at a book before they purchased it; at the back, it was gloomy with a few spiders and the chairs were dull and rough. The bookshelves were signed according to subject, and unsurprisingly most of the books towards the back were the less favoured topics. However, it seemed the unkept back was unkept merely because few people wanted the books, as an assistant hurried over looking hopeful as Armeno stopped outside the shop. The place was obviously doing well, from the sheer number of books being sold. Armeno was sure they could find a good book of nursery rhymes in there.

Armeno dismounted and tied Veloxpes to a slightly rusted iron ring set in the wall. He turned to wait for Static, wondering what the child would do now.
'This place ought to do,' he said. 'Maybe we can inquire about work or a new weapon while we're here?' the child instantly rode forwards.
'The Mage requires you to do nothing except obtain and return the book during your presence here. You may return once your debt to her has been paid.' Armeno looked outraged.
'Debt? It's more blackmail... Our service or our lives...' He muttered this facing away from the child.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:27 pm

Static followed Armeno as he dismounted, the ringing of the bell harsh and insistent. But also, strangely warming. She twisted Tam’s reins into the wall ring after Armeno was done, then followed him into the bookstore, pulling her hood over her eyes. It was still an embarrassment, however much the bookshelf reminded her of her own childhood.

The store smelt faintly like books did, with an assortment ranging from very old magic books, kept under close guard and lock and key, to the more common cookbooks and, hopefully, children’s books. She stepped behind Armeno as an eager store assistant stepped up to greet them, not wanting to admit that they were looking for such a trivial book. After all, she had a reputation to uphold.

“Can I help you? We’ve got all sorts of books, rare, new, old, common… Is there something specific you’re looking for?”
Static continued to skulk, peering from behind her hood at the books around. There sure was a range of books here, but there was so much traffic… Hopefully they hadn’t sold the last fairytale book yet…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Sun Dec 26, 2010 2:46 pm


Armeno rolled his eyes as the assistant leapt to meet them.
'Well, yes, I suppose,' he said, looking around at the numerous shelves. 'I wonder if you could tell us where the children's books are?' The assistant looekd mildly surprised for a moment, but his face soon smoothed over and he held out an arm.
'This way, sir,' he said, leading Armeno to a large shelf of brightly coloured books. One particularly caught Armeno's eye, largely because it was out on display- It was a bright blue book, bearing the title 'A Rogue's Birthday' and a picture of an equally lurid cake. The elf raised an eyebrow at the book, but passed it over and selected a volume which had the words 'A Child's Garden of Rhymes' embossed in gold along a white spine. Opening it, he saw a coloured picture above a silly-sounding song about a dog and a sausage.
'Well,' he said, holding the book up for Static to read. 'This should do.' The assistant, who had been hovering, now smield and said,
'Excellent? Will that be all?' Armeno shrugged.
'I think so,' he replied, looking at Static. 'Unless you're after anything? If not, we'll just pay and leave.' The assitant looked disappointed for a second, then turned to the shelf.
'If it's nursery rhymes you're after, sir, then may I suggest this?' He selected a huge book, and before Armeno could see anything about it, the assistant flipped it open to reveal an intricately coloured and detailed illustration above a nursery rhyme in elegant script.
'All hand-created by the acclaimed illustrator, Mr-'
'No, thank you,' interrupted Armeno. 'This one should be fine.' The child, he noticed, was watching silently through a window, and his stomach hopped- were they meant to get the better copy? Why was he even worried anyway? But the child's small hand moved up and made a gesture- the thumb and first finger together, the others splayed out. Ok. Armeno turned back to the assistant and firmly shook his head. The man, looking mildly irritated, slid the book back on the shelf with a small inclination of the head.
'As you wish, sir,' he spat out, though somehow sounding bland and cheerful through the less pleasant tone. Armeno glanced at Static.
'Ok, then?' he asked, taking a small bag of money off his belt.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Tue Dec 28, 2010 5:32 pm

The children’s books were brightly coloured and big, completely different from most of the other books in the store. She continued to skulk behind Armeno as he looked at the books, eying the other customers hauntily. To be caught looking at the children’s books, well, it was frankly embarrassing.
“Hurry up and choose one.” She hissed over his shoulder, flushing as he tried to show her a book he had picked up. She waved it away, looking out the window and trying to not seem so awkward. It didn’t really work.

“No, I don’t need books. They only weigh Tamarisk down.” Anyway, if she needed information, she could always get it off someone, and as for her powers, well, she was sure they were pretty unique- Or unique enough for there not to be a book about them.

Static gave a sigh from under her hood as the store assistant held up another book, peering out from under a corner of the fabric at the book. It sure was handsome, but a book like that would cost an arm and a leg. Good thing it looked like the child was okay with the first one… “Yeah. Let’s get out of here” before my reputation’s completely destroyed… She headed across the store to a table where people seemed to be taking their books to be paid for, and occasionally, wrapped. Perfect, that way she wouldn’t even be seen walking out the door with Armeno holding the stupid thing…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:13 pm


Armeno smiled a little at Static's embarrassment. He appreciated that it was a little humiliating to be in the children's section, but it was unlikely that he would see any of the people here again, and if they both acted the way Static was then the job would never get done. He nodded as she confirmed she wasn’t after any books, and he followed her to pay, rolling his eyes. He looked up at the assistant.
‘How much, please?’ he asked politely. The assistant scanned the book briefly, before replying,
‘Seven silver pieces, please.’ Armeno shook the money out of the bag, reattached it to his belt and took the book, which the assistant had quickly and deftly wrapped in brown waxed paper.
‘Thank you, please come again!’ said the assistant, his sullen attitude now evaporated. Armeno nodded and stepped out of the door.

He instantly noticed a man lurking by Veloxpes and working at the tightly knotted reins. Armeno’s eyes narrowed and an expression of extreme dislike spread over his face.
‘Get away from my horse,’ he spat. The man straightened, looking a little taken aback.
‘I reckon it’s my horse now,’ he grinned, revealing a missing tooth. The man had several scars on his face, and was heavily built. He obviously assumed the lithe Armeno would be no challenge for him. Armeno stepped forwards, his tone now venomous and quiet.
‘If you know what’s good for you, you will leave my horse alone now,’ he said, allowing his hand to stray to the hilt of his sword on his belt. He twitched it a little out of the sheath, and the man looked at it nervously, then back at Armeno’s face. Noticing the pointed ears for the first time, he flinched a little.
‘Right y’are, sir,’ he said, backing away. Armeno glared at him, and pulled on one strand on the knot, which fell apart instantly. He then swung himself up onto Velox’s back, stowed the book in the saddlebags, and turned to the blank child.
‘Can you link straight to the Mage?’ he asked. The child’s eyes snapped into focus, and locked onto Armeno, who had to force himself to hold the eye contact.
‘The Mage will now use my body.’ The answer rang out clearly, and a few people glanced up curiously at the child. Even more looks were directed their way as the child began to shake violently and the piercing eyes slid shut. After thirty seconds or so, the eyelids lifted once more and Armeno was sure that they were the same as the Mage’s. Armeno looked a little tense, but spoke to the child regardless.
‘We have your book. Static requires a new weapon, and it could be useful if we get into any trouble along the way. Could we go to a blacksmith and see about obtaining a weapon.’ The Mage’s eyes were thoughtful, but the rest of the child’s face remained as blank as ever. Armeno glanced at Static, hoping she would back him up.


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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Dec 30, 2010 3:11 pm

Books were expensive- the good money Armeno had just paid would have provided food for one of them for a good couple of days. She was suddenly grateful that he hadn’t expected her to pay up, but also kind of guilty. Had he not asked because she was a woman? As they left the bookstore, Static debated whether she should give him a few silver pieces, but their attention was quickly diverted.

Someone was trying to steal Velox- But Armeno quickly sorted it. She gave a harsh laugh as the thief backed off, joining the elf at the tether and pulling Tam’s reins free. Obviously her knabstrupper was a little too ostentatious still for stealing.
“Seems you can be scary to some people when you want to be.” She said under her breath to him as the thief disappeared into the crowded street, pulling her reins free and flicking them over Tam’s head. She mounted too, feeling the horse shift under her weight.

While Armeno addressed the child, Static took a back seat (as she had been doing since they got to the city). The child seemed to change, and she nudged Tam forwards slightly, so she could see better. The piercing eyes of the child looked back at them.
“She has not been cooperative in the task I have set you. You must bring the book to me first.” The Mage looked at Static, obviously unimpressed. “Return to me in the woods immediately.”
The child’s eyes closed again, it repeated the strange shaking that it had earlier returning, and when it looked up again, the mage was gone.


“So much for a new weapon. Come on, lets get going then.” Static pulled her reins, nudging Tamarisk into a walk out into the middle of the street.


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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Tue Jan 04, 2011 6:55 pm


Armeno couldn't help his lips twitching at Static's whispered words, but he quickly controlled himself as the child replied to his query.
'Let's,' he agreed, nudging Veloxpes. The Arab hopped around and began to trot off energetically. Behind him, Armenia could hear the steady beat of Tamarisk's hooves and the quieter tapping of the pony's feet. They were out of the city again soon enough, the guards scarcely sparing them a glance. Once again though, people looked at them curiously- and even more so when Velox suddenly stopped. His ears pricked completely up, and he snickered. Looking back, Armeni saw Tamarisk looking much the same, and the pony identical but flicking its ears.
'Wha-' Armeno's lips began to frame the question, but before he could finish even the first word, Velox bolted. The elf's head whipped back round and he instinctively ducked down to lessen the painful wind lashing at his face. The landscape around him blurred, and he heard a tiny voice in his mind.
'I speak to all of you now.' The voice was adult, but he knew it to be that of the Mage.
'I am impatient for you to deliver my book. Your horses will continue at this speed to my cloud; they will know where to go. I will be weaker when you arrive, from my magics, as will you and your horses from your exertions- the lack of sleep will hit. You may stay in my cloud for one night and eat before I send you on your way.'
As the voice finished, Armeno felt a presence he had not realised was there lift, and he shook his head. Ignoring the stinging of his eyes, he looked around him. From what he could see they were in a forest and moving at around the sound barrier. He raised his eyebrows; it wouldn't take them long now. Bending his face back into Velox's neck, he waited.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Sat Jan 08, 2011 1:36 pm

The street was busy with people, but easy enough to navigate on horseback. The wall of the city loomed before them before they passed back underneath the gatehouse again (it was frustrating to think that the one thing she had come to the city to get, she couldn’t because of this stupid quest).

Their exit from the city was observed by some of the travellers to the city, the road busy now that the sun was up, and it was easy to travel- and there were no rogues to attack them. Static was just drifting off into thoughts about the new weapon she might buy when they got back into the city, maybe a new scimitar, or a falchion? Tam ground to a halt, and even with a kick in the sides, he just stood there, flicking his ears.
“Come on Tam--“ Suddenly he leapt forwards from underneath her, and she had to grab at the pommel of her saddle to stop from being thrown off. She ducked low to his side as the wind rushed past, and she figured it was some sort of magic- Armeno must be experiencing it too.
So, it was magic, as the mage had said. She hoped Tam wouldn’t be completely knocked out by it, the horse wasn’t made for short distance sprints, he was made for long distance endurance.

The forest rushed around them for a few moments, then it slowed. The horses moved from a gallop into a canter then a trot and a walk, without any command being given- They just knew when they had reached the candyfloss cloud again. Static looked up as the trees became focused, pulling her hood back over her head- it had blown off in the wind. The candyfloss cloud filled the spaces between the trees in front of them, running in each direction without an end. There was a gaping hole in front of them, and the child that had accompanied them ordered his pony through the gap without hesitation.
“Better go and give her this book then eh?” said Static, coaxing Tamarisk after the child before the horse lost sight of his fellow equine. It wouldn’t do for the stallion to spook again, especially if he was going to get tired quickly in a moment. He always was in a bad mood when he was tired.


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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Sat Jan 08, 2011 6:47 pm


Armeno lifted his head and sat up cautiously as the horses slowed considerably to a normal canter. Sure enough, there in front of them sat the candyfloss cloud. Beside him, he could see Static adjusting her hood. A large tunnel was directly in front o them, and the child had already directed the pony down without hesitation. Armeno shunted Velox in after Tamarisk.
‘I think we better had,’ he agreed. ‘At least once this is over we can have a night’s shelter before we leave.’ It was odd, he reflected, the way he was comfortable with Static. It was probably something to do with the fact that he hadn’t slept in thirty hours, which made the time they had been doing the errand in seem a lot longer than it had actually been. All the same, he normally wouldn’t trust anyone he didn’t know was on the same side as him in an army or a couple of weeks- and it took far longer than that for him to be completely trusting of them.
‘I’ll want to see about getting some more spare strings for my bow when we’re in Racksom again,’ he told Static. They rode along or a little longer.

Much sooner than when they gone in before, they reached the large chambers. However, this time they took a different route, passing through a similar-possibly the same- first chamber before emerging into a different part of the cloud. After going through only one more chamber, the child stopped and dismounted. Armeno drew up Velox, and the walls seemed to swell slightly, then they suddenly the room became a lot smaller. Velox whinnied and leapt about a metre away as one wall touched his hindquarters. The walls retreated again, leaving behind them several large looseboxes complete with hay and water. The pony was quickly shut in one of these, and then the child turned to Static and Armeno.
‘Please shelter your horses here.’ Armeno noticed the pony was drinking vast quantities of water, and looked exhausted. He dismounted, and put Velox into one of the looseboxes. He put the tack on a nearby rack, along with the saddlebags. Velox huffed and seemed to wilt. Armeno frowned, concerned, but the child spoke.
‘Once your horses are in their boxes, they will have the enchantments on them lifted and the exertion will set in. They will be fine. Armeno nodded; even as they stood there, the pony finished its water, which instantly refilled itself, and a small boy hurried in leading a pony which was quickly installed in one of the looseboxes. Armeno, at this point, was getting used to the greenness of the children, but he still found it odd with every child he saw.
‘The Mage will remove the enchantments on you after you have delivered the book and are going to eat,’ interjected their guide. ‘I will now take you to the Mage, where you can deliver the book.’ Armeno nodded and looked to Static.

Ooc: Sorry if there are a few ‘f’s missing, the key had something stuck under it for half the post :/


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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:43 pm

“Yeah, not sure I want to stick around in this weird cloud for longer than I have to though, if you know what I mean?” Sure, they had spent the past day and a half awake, but the faster they could get out of the candyfloss cloud, the better in her opinion.

They soon appeared in the chambers like they had been in the first time they had entered the cloud, although this time faster than before. It seemed that once you were with one of the children that lived in the cloud, you could find the chambers, but before that, they weren’t something you could find. As they came to a halt in a new chamber, one they hadn’t been in before, the child came to a halt. Tam shifted uncomfortably as the walls pulsed, but was relatively quiet. When Armeno dismounted, Static followed his lead, stroking the knabstrupper’s nose before pulling off his saddle and dumping it with the other tack. He snorted, knowing something was up, and not liking it, but she quickly led him into the stall backing out and pulling his bridle with her. The horse seemed to flag, and immediately sunk to his knees, his head turning towards a bucket filled with water.

“Looks like we’ll have to accept the Mage’s offer of staying the night after all. Even if we don’t need a rest, the horses do.” She started after the child who had been their guide so far. “Have you got the book?” She said as an afterthought, stopping so Armeno could fetch it, then following the child again.

The child lead them through a few more chambers before they ended up in the same chamber as before, the Mage sitting in the same chair as she had before. When they entered, she shifted in her chair as if stirring from a sleep, sitting forwards and eager to see if they had brought her book.
“Well? Where is it?”


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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:01 pm


Armeno nodded at Static's reluctance- he saw her point, but somehow he wasn't sure they were going to get a choice. Once she had settled Tamarisk, and they had started after the guide, he replied to her,
'I think we may need a rest once the enchantment is removed,' he murmured. 'I'm not comfortable staying here either really, she doesn't seem the generous sort, but I don't see what else we can do. I think we just need to hope she doesn't have any more plans for us.' He then slid the book out from under his cloak.
'Yup,' he said, almost grimly.

Armeno held the book out to the impatient child, who snatched it out of his hands and flipped it randomly after. Her lips moved silently, evidently framing the words she read on the page. A brief frown creased her forehead, before she let out an unnatural laugh.
'Very amusing,' she said, though she sounded uncertain. Armeno shot a glance at Static, and then looked back at the Mage.
'I was just wondering why you wanted this book?' he asked. The Mage's face instantly darkened.


'That is competely irrelevant for you,' she snapped. 'However, I suppose I can share the information. Once, I was a normal child. I was the age of two when an enchantment of great power was put on me- I don't know why or who by, my father never granted me the gift of knowing. But from then on, I was aware of everything as an adult would be. I soon discovered that I had inherited powers equal to or greater than those of whoever put the enchantment on me. I used those powers to accelerate my aging so I could be more capable- but I then discovered that the enchantment prevented me from aging also. Once I had reached the age of five physically, I was too weak to continue the aging. I will be five forever, now- but I have been alive for far longer. I merely wished to have some of the entertainment I missed out on previously. This enchantment is, of course, a blessing.' Her face flickered slightly as she said this, though- for a moment, doubt showed through.


Ooc: If you like that story, then she can be telling the truth- if not, she's lying >D Up to you completely, but I just felt Armeno would ask. He likes to be on top of things.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Jan 13, 2011 7:07 pm

Static held back a snappy retort as the child snatched the book from Armeno’s hands- After all, whatever the child said about her past, she was still a child, and therefore, allowed to act childishly. She certainly seemed to enjoy the book enough.

The Mage’s story seemed pretty unbelievable, and Static couldn’t control her snort of derision. Too late, she realised that it was the last thing to tip the Mage over the edge of her patience with Static. She snapped the book shut with a clack, her strange eyes boring into Static’s, even under the darkness of her hood.
“I have had enough of your mockery.” snapped the Mage, her brows drawing together like an irritated child, but this was much, much more. She flicked out a finger, hardly more that a passing gesture, but Static suddenly felt a blow on her front pushing her backwards, like an invisible fist had smashed into her front. She staggered, then another blow came and she was thrown against the wall behind her and Armeno, sticking like a fly to a giant sheet of flypaper. She struggled for a moment, but the exhaustion she had seen the horses overcome by suddenly hit her and she drooped, curls of candyfloss tying her wrists and ankles firmly to the wall. Whatever type of candyfloss it was, it certainly wasn’t the stuff you got when the circus came to town.
“Be thankful I don’t kill you now.” The Mage said, before turning back to the book that was lying on her lap, running a finger over the raised designs on its cover. She almost seemed to be waiting for some sort of reaction from Armeno.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:16 pm


Armeno winced as Static snorted disbelievingly. He could tell the neurotic child wasn't going to take that well- and sure enough she didn't. With the twitch of a finger, Static went flying backwards and was instantly ensnared by several tendrils of candyfloss. The Mage looked at Armeno expectantly, her finger tracing the elevated patterns on the cover of the book. The elf's forehead was furrowed as he thought, looking at Static's limp form pressed to the wall and back to the unchanging Mage. After a minute or so, he turned to the Mage.
'I thank you for not killing her... But could you possibly release her?' The Mage's face twisted in fury, and she leapt to her feet.

'I will decide what happens in my domain, and she is not going free without punishment after her impertinence!' With a twist and flick of her hands, the walls closed in front of Static, and Armeno was shoved back through the declining gap.
They were trapped in a space about three metres square, the walls all around firmly closed. Armeno cursed under his breath, and probed the wall. It was the hardest they'd come across yet. The elf took one step, placing himself next to Static, where he pulled on one of the strands of spun sugar which held Static to the wall. It flexed like elastic under his grip- but when he let it go and tried slicing it with a fingernail, it suddenly became hard and firm. Evidently, the Mage was still exercising some pretty precise control over it. A voice filled Armeno's head suddenly, as he wondered what to do.
'I made a deal with you that you would receive your lives and a night's nourishment and shelter in exchange for delivering my book; I will keep that deal. But you may stay where you are instead of dining with me, and she shall not be released. I shall not attend to you any further except to open a passage out in the morning; somebody will bring you food and drink shortly.' Sure enough, a gap appeared almost instantly, through which a child bearing a tray came. It was set upon the floor, and the child left.
Armeno sighed and inspected the tray. It bore a small loaf of bread, a flask containing what seemed to be some sort of fruit juice, and a few slices of a dark meat. He wasn't going to go and eat it without Static being able to as well, so he went over to her again. After frowning at the bonds for a few moments, he drew his sword slowly out of its sheath.
'I'm going to try and cut you out, ok?' he said. 'So be ready to support your weight. If you don't think you can, I can take it.' He kept his voice low; he wasn't sure the eerie children would be pleased if they noticed. His body was also screaming at him that it was night, and he should be asleep. The tiredness had really kicked in now the Mage had settled them for the night.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Sun Jan 16, 2011 9:28 pm


Static watched Armeno’s following conversation with the Mage through a faint haze of exhaustion, her shoulders stretching uncomfortably from the awkward position tied to the wall. Her hood flopped down over her eyes, and for once, it was annoying not to be able to see what was going on. She tried to flick it out of her face, but it only made it worse, and she could only see Armeno’s feet. Great.

She gave a small yelp of surprise as the wall suddenly twisted around and in front of her, pulling her inexorably backwards. She pulled at one of her wrist cuffs, but it didn’t move, as strong as steel. Everything went dark as the wall enveloped her, then spat her out in a much smaller room. She pulled at her wrists again in futility, giving a little noise of frustration when they didn’t move. The room was lit very dimly with a pinkish sort of light.

She gave a huff of air, then slumped in her manacles. She couldn’t see Armeno, but had heard a footstep, and figured he was in the room with her. That, and close- but what he was doing, she couldn’t work out. She opened her mouth to speak, but the Mage’s voice came. Seemed like she was in for an uncomfortable night- The mage sounded distinctly pissed off, even through her mindlink.

She didn’t say anything as food was delivered, the edge of a tray just sliding into her minimal view of the floor. The sight of a little bread and meat made her mouth water, but there was no way of getting to it being tied to the wall.
“Sorry.” Finally, when there was quiet in the room again, Static spoke, her voice low. “Stupid thing to do.” She was suddenly glad he couldn’t see her face under her hood, it would be awkward. She shifted her shoulders slightly, feeling the pull of her own weight and exhaustion kicking in from hard riding over the past few days. “I don’t think you’ll be able to cut through it. You might as well get some food and rest.” From all the tugging at the cuffs she had tried, her wrists hadn’t moved an inch- In fact, they seemed a little tighter. But that might have just been her imagination. She shut her eyes for a moment, then thought again. “Is there anything to drink?” Her shoulders were really starting to pull now. “Preferably something alcoholic.”

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:52 pm

Armeno shook his head.
'I think we all lose our temper sometimes,' he said calmly. 'I did earlier, in fact. Well- a couple of days ago.' He smiled at her request. 'I don't know about alcoholic, but there is drink. Let me at least try to get you down first, those ties must be restricting your pulse. He used the base of his sword, carefully steering the rest of the sword away from Static's face and the hood obscuring it. He worked at the first tie, the sword grating along the candyfloss.
'This is madness,' he muttered. The entire situation was so childish but yet mature at the same time. The candyfloss and imprisonment rang of the youngness of the Mage- but then, didn't many wiser men bind their subjects in much the same way? He frowned, yanked the sword back and forth once more, and the band of candyfloss severed, leaving Static's arm unsupported. He smiled, then began to work on the next bond. He got through that sooner than the first, but as it drooped down along with Static's body, a voice filled his head.

'I see that still you defy me!' The Mage sounded annoyed and slightly angry, but a tinge of amusement also touched her voice. 'Well, no matter. She may sit, though I think the two of you do not deserve full rein of your room anymore.' The ceiling lowered enough that they could no longer stand, and the walls closed until the space was large enough for them to both lie down, touching no walls, and with a small space between them.
'I would take your sword so you can't cut your way out, but there's no point seeing as everything you remove will grow back again. Sweet dreams, now.' The presence vanished from their heads once more, leaving Armeno frowning at the mocking tone the Mage had had when wishing them a good night's sleep.


Armeno shrugged, however, and turned to Static to find her ankles were untied. He yawned hugely, sheathed his sword and then pulled the tray towards them. He picked up the flask and sniffed it.
'No, just fruit juice I'm afraid,' he shrugged to Static, holding out the flask and tearing the loaf neatly in two. He ripped off a chunk of bread, laid a slice of meat on it and took a large bite, gesturing that Static too should eat.

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:34 pm

Static hadn’t thought that the ties might be restricting her pulse, but she didn’t say anything. Well, if that what happened sometimes… She had (thankfully), never been in that situation. She pulled her head back against the candyfloss wall as Armeno levelled his sword in next to her wrist, the metal cold through her glove. It grated audibly as he sawed it back and forth.
“What did you expect, something normal in a castle made of candyfloss run by a delinquent five year old?”

She felt the fibres of candyfloss suddenly pull free as the sword cut through, and her arm dropped free. The pain in her shoulder lessened, no longer being pulled, but she could still feel the ache- and realised she probably would for the rest of the night. Her other wrist was quickly cut free, and she dropped to her knees, her hands banging hard on the floor. She gave a groan, turning around to sit, her ankles still tied up to the wall. She pushed her hood back off her head, shaking her hair free. Now she could peruse the room at leisure.

The Mage came in the head for a final time, sounding like it would probably be the last time she spoke with them for the night. The ceiling squashed down on them, and she was glad she was sitting, otherwise her neck would have been at very uncomfortable position, being relatively tall. The candyfloss around her ankles dissipated back into the wall, and she drew her knees up to her chest, massaging her ankles through her boots.
“I’m blaming this one on you though.” She pushed against the closest wall, feeling the sugary block bend under her fingers, but sprang back to its original shape when she took her hands away.

“Better than nothing I suppose.” She said, taking the flask and swigging a mouthful. It was a little sweet for her taste, and she put it back on the tray quickly, swapping it for some bread. She chewed in silence for a while, her eyes drooping with the exhaustion that had hit them, before abandoning the rest of the bread and pulling off her boots and gloves.
“I’m going to get some sleep.” She said, tugging her cloak around her and tucking it so it was warm and comfortable. She rolled onto her side, watching Armeno eat. Her back was firmly against the wall behind her, yet it was still… Cosy. Close.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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PostSubject: Re: Rogue and El- A Chance encounter   Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:42 pm


Armeno inclined his head, accepting that he probably shouldn't expect anything- least of all the normal. A smile curved his lips as she spoke, experimentally tryign to mold the wall into a different shape.
'I think I had better accept that blame,' he agreed, nodding once more. He watched silently as she took a brief swig from the flask and then took a chunk of bread. He finished his own piece and watched as she laid hers down.
'That's probably a good idea,' he admitted, slipping off his own shoes. After finishing another small piece of bread, he too wrapped his cloak around himself and lay down.

He'd been almost this tired before, in armies on the march- though this did just about trump it. And he'd never felt so awkward when falling asleep- though he had spent plenty of nights with women, they had all been in a good space and generally briefly after he had rescued the woman. Mostly when he fought on the same side as women they slept in different places to him.

'I hope you sleep well, then,' he said slightly formally, and lay down on his back but with his head turned away from Static. His breathing soon slowed until he was relaxed- though not asleep. He wasn't entirely sure if Static had anything to say to him, and so he found himself closely studying the wall. The candyfloss, unlike soem painted wall, formed no pattern, and he found absolutely no interest in the blank stretch of sugar. Eventually, he reached one finger out and traced a light design on. The indentations remained for a few seconds, then slowly filled in. Armeno let out a small sigh and resumed staring at the pinkness.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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