Closed The Right Place (Alea)

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Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

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The Right Place (Alea)

Postby Marion Kay on September 18th, 2015, 3:34 am

55 Fall 515 AV

You should start telling the truth.

The thought came unbidden as Marion laid in bed, watching the morning light creep across the ceiling. It had been hovering at the edge of her mind for some time now, manifesting itself every so often in the notion that she was, and had been, doing something undeniably wrong, but never before had it revealed itself so blatantly. It caught her off guard, and she twisted the bundled sheets in her fists as she contemplated its implications.

The truth.

Marion knew what the thought meant, having sprouted it from her own mind. It was nearly a year since she had stepped onto Riverfall's docks with a steely determination to tear the city asunder. But what steps had she taken to that end? She'd thought to be sly, perhaps, and skirt the dangers that might arise from her intentions. She'd felt forced to downplay her abilities, shroud her purpose in veils of illusions, the very things she claimed to combat. That discretion had gotten her nowhere, and she realized now that she had been tainted by the cultures to which she'd exposed herself. There was Syliras, where breathing the wrong god's name was met with drawn swords, and Sunberth, where they waved torches in her direction for practicing her chosen medium of art. And then, of course, there was always Alvadas, where she'd let herself be silenced in a throng of lies before she'd ever known she had a voice.

So the truth was tempting -- but how, Marion wondered, would this city choose to punish her for it? Did it matter, when it was the only conceivable way forward? Tossing the bed sheets from her body, she imagined heavy blue hands pounding her door. Blue hands holding her arms behind her back. Blue hands pushing her towards whatever higher power would decide her fate. What was the sentence for sowing fear through the population? Perhaps, one day, she'd find out.

Before then, though, she would need to get her mind sorted. She rolled from the bed with a sigh, dragging hands over her sleep-lacking face, her tangled hair, her chilled arms. The air grew colder with each passing night, and though she tried to shake the notion from her mind as she stood and trailed over to her dresser, she couldn't help the dark whisper that suggested she did, on some level, miss Kalea after all. Even if only for the warmer clime.

But as she tugged on layers of clothes, Marion's mind returned to the issue still at hand, the desire to escape the cycle in impotency she'd locked herself into, the desire for something more real, more tangible than the games she'd been playing thus far. It was all well and good to say (or not even go that far, given that it was still only an abstract thought) she wanted to spread the truth, but how was she meant to put it into practice?

A piercing realization dawned upon her she tugged a plain white shirt across her shoulders. Hirem. It had been so long since she had seen him last. Too long, maybe, though she would never admit such aloud with anything but a mocking grin, but he was the only person in this city with which she'd shared any real modicum of the truth, and she decided it therefore fell to him to provide some insight on the matter. After all, no one in this city knew her better than he, as sad as that fact may be. Either way, she might enjoy his maddening company after so long. Her life felt so frightfully dull without someone to call her nemesis, though she couldn't help wondering whether it was the same matter of luck or purpose that now kept them apart. He wasn't a friend, of course, but a welcome distraction, and one that always seemed to turn up at the most inopportune moments. So why, she mused, had he not turned up lately, when her life was so full of inopportune moments?

Marion finished getting dressed, fingers fumbling along buttons and laces as some semblance of a plan pieced itself together in her mind and the crooked ghost of a smile played on her lips.

• • •

It had taken her two bells to find the Sanctuary. Not too long in the grand scheme, perhaps not even as long as it rightfully should have taken, but too long for Marion's haste-beaten patience. She'd recalled the name of the place by chance, having committed to memory Hirem's drunken mention of it simply because she had assumed it was a place of importance to him, or, at the very least, a place he came by frequently. It would seem it was a place of note for many in the city; she hadn't had to mill around the tavern floor of the Kulkukan and harass strangers about the place called "Sanktury" for more than fifteen chimes before she came across a friendly-faced akalak who knew exactly what she was going on about.

"Ah, you mean the Sanctuary. Two miles due north along the coast," he'd said, and Marion had graciously ignored the appraising look he'd followed with. "I've time to show you the way, if you would like."

Marion had declined the offer through the same terse smile she'd been practicing for seasons before embarking on the small trek. It shouldn't have taken her more than half a bell, following the road, but the fact that she'd had to double back to the inn to fetch her coat after the autumnal wind off the sea grew too raw, coupled with her lack of familiarity with anything outside the city's gates besides the route to the amphitheater, had delayed her arrival so that by the time she arrived at the facility a deep-set scowl had settled across her face.

She furrowed her brow, arms crossed as her gaze swept across the small fortress before her. She was sure it was some impressive feat of construction, just as the city itself was, though she hadn't the eye or the mind to appreciate it. Still, from where she stood just outside what seemed to be the main entrance, the buildings housed within were more elegant than she would have expected, the grace of their designs belying the distant smell that emanated from them. It was not an overpowering odor, and Marion perhaps wouldn't have noticed it if not for the fact that the weather irritated her and she was determined to be displeased. Even so, it was clear that this place seemed to specialize in housing animals, and she could only surmise in bemusement at Hirem's reasons for taking up residence here.

Brushing a lock of hair from her face, Marion meandered past the gate, her eyes flitting from place to place, from buildings to doorways, scanning for any sign that the person she sought was here. She found none, though a few people -- laborers or grooms, for the most part -- flitted from one building to the next, or, from what Marion glimpsed between buildings, lead a horse or two through exercises in a courtyard. From the bustle of activity around her, she imagined it was some version of luck that kept her from being approached by some worker or another, though perhaps she owed it more to the naturally relaxed set of her shoulders and confidence in her motions that delayed them noticing that she did not belong.
Show me a hero and I'll write you a tragedy.
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Marion Kay
Flung out of space.
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The Right Place (Alea)

Postby Alea Davenport on September 22nd, 2015, 12:29 am

Alea was having a rather unique day. Cadra, the kelvic cook of the sacntuary, had decided that she wanted to experiment int he kitchen. Alea had been pulled from less pressing duties to aid in this endeavor. Since Alea barely knew which end of a spoon to hold, she was not sure why the cat thought this would be a good idea. But Cadra was mistress of the kitchens, and overruled Alea's objections.

It wasn't so bad for the most part, since Cadra relegated her to simple tasks, like "Fetch me the chopping knife!", or "Stir this widdershins until all the lumps are gone!" Or something like that. Alea couldn't understand all of it, but when she made a mistake, Cadra would just take over and give Alea new instructions. The cat did not seem to hold Alea's mistakes against her, but was so intensely focused that Alea did not want to interrupt her long enough to learn how to do things properly.

At last, Cadra grabbed Alea by the shoulders and stared directly into her eyes and said, "I need mint. Go to the herb garden and bring some back for me." Alea started to comply, but on her way out the door Cadra looked up from her mixing bowl and added, "Wait, make that basil instead. Also, bring sage! And maybe some chives!"

Alea ran out the door before the crazy cooking kelvic could change her mind another time. She decided to just bring back a little of everything. The way this morning was going, it would save time in the long run.

She ran across the yard of the Sanctuary and found the herb garden. She picked up a small basket that was lying nearby and started picking herbs, laying them into the basket with a mix of order and haste. Most of the herbs had labels on their pots, and Alea checked to make sure she had the ones Cadra had mentioned. Basil, and...what else was there? Oh well, the kelvic could probably sort it out. She'd have to anyway, since Alea wasn't bothering to separate or identify the herbs in any way. She was pretty cure Cadra hadn't mentioned cilantro, but into the basket it went!

Alea kept moving quickly down the line of herb pots, filling her baskets with samples, occasionally reading the labels out of curiosity. She read, 'Rosemary', her mind automaticaly added 'Nitrozian', and she heard as if from a distance the voice of an angry shrieking harridan. When she became away of what she was doing, the plant in her hands had been ripped into tiny pieces, and her fingers were slightly sticky from the plant's insides. She decided it was time to leave.

She grabbed her basket and ran out the door, back across the yard. Halfway there though, she ran straight into someone. Alea, having been trying very hard not to think, was too distracted to avoid falling down. Luckily, the basket landed right-side-up, and only a few leaves fell out. There were still plenty left for Cadra to make use of.

Alea suddenly did not want to deal with the consequences of being late, or deal with the potential wrath of her temporary boss. Muttering a brief apology to the woman she'd run into, Alea, scooped up the basket and resumed her progress toward the kitchen.

OOCSorry if I didn't leave you much to work with x.x If you're not inclined to follow Alea into the kitchen, I can bring her back out in my next post :P
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Alea Davenport
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