Closed Fare Sailing (Kailani)

A spy is in need of the right ship for a job.

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kynier on October 3rd, 2018, 1:57 am

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24th of Fall, 518 A.V.
8th Bell

It was decent weather as far as the current trend for Fall had been. No buffeting winds to knock one on their rump and the rain was only coming down in a light drizzle. Though it seemed to have been days since Syna had last revealed herself to the city. A bit of an exaggeration but that’s how it felt. Sunberth appeared deceptively clean with the garbage being either washed or blown away. At least it was the cleanest Kynier had seen it in a long while. No one seemed to want to bear the responsibility of removing the waste. Which gave him an idea. What if…?

Today he was the Spy more than the other two. Doler had given him a task to accomplish. Some basic surveillance to be reported at the end of the day. The unfortunate thing with Doler is that “end of the day” usually meant the seventh or eighth bell of the next. The main challenge to this task, Kynier had to get somewhere that he couldn’t reach by foot. This led him to walking up the length of the Nameless River, casting an eye on all the ferries. Commissioning one of them for transport would most likely be cheaper, and less suspicious, than going to the harbor for a ship.

Boats were one of the many topics that Kynier had no understanding of. Making all his judgments based on what he saw with a first glance. Many of the Svefra only used dinghies or small rafts for crossing the river. None of them were going to be good for what he needed. And it wasn’t until he travelled most of the river’s length that he found one that looked to be suitable. A Casinor, was settle in a place to allow for quick escape out the Mudway and into the open sea. The vessel appeared a little battered, but that was probably a good sign. Right?

Kynier approached the ship and stood at the water’s edge. His black cloak hung around his form and the damp hood drooped down over his brow. Both his short swords of cold iron were strapped to his belt though they were out of sight due to the cloak. He looked up and down the boat’s length but didn’t see the person that would be steering the vessel. He questioned if he should just get on the boat but decided not to. “Hello?” he called out.

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kailani on October 4th, 2018, 5:34 am

Kailani sat on the edge of her bed with a small otter skin bag in her lap, fingers fiddling with the strings as she contemplated whether or not to torture herself once more. Gods only knew she’d done it often enough over the past couple days, watching that same ten seconds play over and over again. Golden braids obscured her face as she gazed down at the object with an air of disdain, the memory contained within one that physically hurt her to revisit. That night, in the cavern with Azcan…it was a night she’d never forget, and one she wanted desperately to erase from her memory forever. After their encounter at the Drunken Fish, she’d be happy if she never saw him again-something she’d resigned herself to months ago. Not true and you know it, a small voice whispered in the back of her mind, one she sought to silence almost immediately. The drummer was more trouble than he was worth, and he’d put her through enough heartache already. She had to end their association, once and for all, but here she was again, abusing herself with bittersweet recollection. Put the damn thing away, Kai, she told herself, even as she started loosening the ties. Watching it again will do you no good.

Thankfully, her self-destruction was interrupted by an inquiring shout outside, a shout that finally set her into motion. The Svefra sighed with a mixture of relief and disappointment as she stored the Tear of Tanroa away for future bouts of masochism. Standing from the bed, she straightened her shoulders with a smile. Time to get to work. She threw a glance at herself in the nearby mirror, pushing a few errant strands of hair from her face and tugging a couple wrinkles out of her shirt. Satisfied enough with her appearance, she nodded, threw on her cloak, and slipped her feet into her waiting shoes. Kailani at last emerged from the door of her quarters onto the deck above and started looking around for the source of the noise. When she spotted the hooded man standing only feet away, she offered a friendly wave.

“Good morning, sirrah!” she called out in accented Common as she gestured for him to come aboard. “Welcome, welcome! Kailani Crestwidow, at your service.” Her smile was sweet and genuine as she offered her hand to steady him should he need it when he stepped on deck. “Are you looking for a ride? First fare of the day, so we can go anywhere you need! Within reason, of course.” Oceanic eyes sparkled with mirth, laughing as she winked. “Or even without reason, so long as your destination can catch my interest!”

The Svefra’s boisterous demeanor was a mark of her race, and while her friendliness was typically genuine, her occasional over-the-top outward expression hid a shrewd intelligence within. Distract them, make them laugh. Never give too much of yourself away. Stay smart, girl, and you’ll stay alive. Dumb women are dead women. Or they become the property of men. One of many of Karigan Crestwidow’s pearls of wisdom, and one Kai clung to fiercely. Except in the case of Azcan. She shoved that thought to the back of her mind and did her best to keep her emotions from her face.

A curious, assessing gaze took in her new customer, and while Kailani sensed no malicious intent, it never hurt to stay aware. One could never be too cautious, especially in a place like Sunberth. “So, where are we headed, my hooded friend?”

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kynier on October 5th, 2018, 3:09 am

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For several moments there had been no response and no sign of new activity. Kynier groaned to himself a little. It would be preferable to not get one of the larger, sturdier looking ships from the harbor in Baroque Bay. For one thing, it was more difficult to be discrete with one of those vessels. Or so the spy imagined. He was about to turn and leave when the opening to the cabin finally opened. A lithe female form draped in a cloak came into view. The intense blue eyes of a Svefran woman met him, accompanied by a smile.

Kynier did not have any Svefran acquaintances to be accustomed to their unique accent. So he listened intently to every word she said and had to repeat it in his mind just to make sure he heard her correctly. The woman’s manner was friendly enough as she gestured for him to step aboard. Kynier took a single long step without the intension of needing the assistance she offered. Yet his newfound weight on the boat made it shift on the water which he was not prepared for. While he did not stumble a hand instinctually reached and took her offered hand.

Once his other foot was on deck he took his hand away from hers, noting how tan and callous her skin was. Standing closer now, he was able to get a better glimpse of her. The woman, Kailani, had long blonde hair and a visually appealing form. Her angular face and shadowed eyes caught his interest the most. After his first initial take of her form, his hazel eyes never ventured away from her face. Kynier set his feet at a wider stance than normal. The boat tilted and shifted, and he had no sea legs to be able to comfortably move with the flow.

“Morning, Kailani. I am in fact looking for a ride.” His tone was pleasant enough for conversation. Though it did not match her boisterous level of friendliness. Whatever innuendos she may have used were lost on him. So, he found the wink a bit strange. Did she just flirt with me? Kynier would’ve crossed his arms had they not been too preoccupied being held out a little to either side for balance underneath his cloak. “But I’m not looking for a quick crossing of the river, or a swift transport along its length. But I would need to hire your services for the whole day.”

He took a few steps around the deck looking over the boat. “Is this vessel sea worthy? My destination is the waters around Lodestar Isle.” He looked over his shoulder to gage the Svefran’s reaction to that. She was probably more familiar with the tales around the island than he was. All that concerned him, at that moment, was being able to coast around the island and note the sea traffic around it. One of the major gangs had an outpost on the island to impound other ships. With that gang’s sudden decrease in activity in the city, perhaps they were up to something out there.

Kynier turned to face the woman proper and set his hands on his hips. “So then, is that a job that you’re up for?”

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kailani on October 7th, 2018, 10:16 pm

The Svefra hid a smile as the man stepped onboard and his weight shifted, her hand carefully steadying him as he gained his bearings. It was obvious he wasn’t well-acquainted with the deck of a ship; she had much the same experience when she stepped on land after a long bout at sea. The steady heaving of the ocean was nothing more than a fact of life for her, and she’d grown accustomed to its motion since birth. A fact she often took for granted when others came on board, and one that never failed to amuse her when they stumbled.

The Sunset Tide may not look like much, but I can promise you she is quite sea worthy,” Kai assured the man as he inquired after her casinor, sounding almost offended at such a question. Did he really think she would offer him a ride aboard a ship that wasn’t up to the task? How could he imply she would even maintain such a vessel in the first place? She chose not to let it get to her, however; she was sure he hadn’t intended to insult her.

When the man mentioned needing her services for the whole day, Kailani looked at him in surprise. It was not a request she’d received yet, but she wasn’t going to immediately decline, especially with the air of intrigue that clung to him like a second skin. Wherever he was headed, she was quite sure she’d be willing to go. When he told her of his destination, her surprise only grew, eyebrows raising into her forehead. Lodestar Isle? Certainly wasn’t expecting that.

So then, is that a job that you’re up for? A wolfish grin spread over the woman’s face as she gestured for him to take a seat on the nearby bench. She was already moving over the deck with the smooth grace of a woman born to the sea, undoing the ties that held them moored to the nearby pilings. “Is that a job I’m up for?” she repeated, aquatic-hued eyes sparkling with mirth. “What a question, my friend. What a question.” She laughed as she started hauling up the anchor, winding the chain with the ease of long practice. She knew well the tales of the haunted Lodestar Isle, stories that both fascinated her and chilled her to the core. Others might balk at the idea of such an excursion, but not Kailani. No, the Svefra woman was only too happy to oblige, and burned with curiosity at his reasoning for such a venture.

“Have a name, sirrah? Suppose I should have something to call you if we’ll be spending the day together.” She hastened to the mast as she awaited his answer and raised the sails, warily securing the ties that had snapped on her only days before. Kai nodded with satisfaction as the wind billowed out the fabric and sighed with relief that they still seemed to be holding. It wouldn’t do for her to have a repeat of the experience, especially if they were heading toward open water. She adjusted the tiller, and they were off, wind carrying them over the bay's surface as smoothly as she could manage. One never knew how prone to seasickness the landlubbers tended to be, and she had no wish to clean her deck again that day.

Once they were set on their course, Kailani turned to her customer for the day with a smile, shrewd gaze assessing his shrouded face. “Lodestar Isle, that’s an interesting request,” she commented, words carefully enunciated as she let her unspoken question hang in the air. What was their purpose in heading toward such an unusual destination? Was he after the ghosts said to haunt its waters, or was it the rumors of gang activity he sought after? Perhaps even the treasure some of its more prolific locations supposedly contained?

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kynier on October 11th, 2018, 11:04 pm

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All he knew about bouts were the things he had overheard from sailors at the harbor. Kynier never had context to know what a “starboard” was or where to even find the “helm”. Many times, he had heard of boats not being sea-worthy. What prevented one vessel from being capable of surviving the open waters was something Kynier had no concept of. Though it seemed like a wise question to ask. The Sunset Tide, was capable of surviving the journey then. With a last look around the boat he asked his question about her interest.

Svefra were a little unusual. From Kynier’s limited experience, they did not typically have the same monetary based greed as the rest of the people in Sunberth. So when the woman, Kailani, smiled so boldly, he knew the idea of sailing around Lodestar Isle was what had caused it. She did not give him any definitive answer, though one wasn’t needed, as she went about pulling on ropes and cranking on something. Kynier felt the boat beginning to lurch and drift beneath his feet. The unsure footing was unsettling, so he found something to grasp onto to help keep himself steady. Akajia, what have I gotten myself into now?

“My name is Kynier,” he said. Kailani had given him one last smile before releasing the sails. Catching the wind, the boat set off. Kynier stumbled a few steps before finding something else to steady himself. He had only been on a boat twice before. Both times it had never left the harbor. And both times had been unpleasant experiences. An unspoken question after her last words were more than apparent. Kynier gave her a quick glance before diverting his gaze to where the boat was going. They were still in the river where it was possible to be overheard. He would wait before saying anything.

Taking deep long breaths through his nose and exhaling through his mouth, Kynier managed to fend off the first signs of seasickness. His mouth still felt that paradox of being both wet and dry before vomiting. But his stomach was calm for the moment. Looking around, it was interesting… almost fun… to see how quickly they were going. Horses never seemed to have agreed with him, and this was his first boat ride that he could remember. The speed at which they were moving brought an expression of amusement to his face.

Once they were out of the river and into the bay, Kynier would turn and look at Kailani. “We don’t need to make landfall at Lodestar Isle. The Daggerhand hold a claim and I’d rather not have any sort of interaction with them today. So then, we’ll be sailing around the island and observing the sea traffic.” Kynier watched her reaction for an instant before adding, “All day.”

He let go of what he had been holding onto, though his hand hovered not far in case he needed to take another firm hold of it for balance again. Kynier stood with a slightly wider stance than normal and with his legs partially bent. The boat’s movement over the water was something he intended to adjust to. Kynier didn’t like the idea of clinging to the same place on a ship the entire time. Freedom of movement was preferable. “So Kailani,” he said to get her attention again. “How much would it cost me to keep your services until Syna’s next rise?”

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kailani on October 14th, 2018, 1:10 am

“A pleasure to meet you, Kynier,” Kailani replied, tone amiable enough as she moved to the helm and took hold of the wheel. The winds were certainly with them that day, guiding The Sunset Tide like a dream across the smooth, almost glassy waters of the bay. The woman had already taken heed of Kynier’s unsure footing and tight hold-it was clear he wasn’t a regular passenger upon the waters. He was adapting fairly quickly, however, a fact of which she was happy to take note. A steadier foot would serve him well if he intended to stay aboard as long as he said.

The almost unseen amusement that spread over his face pulled another smile from her own lips; she knew just how captivating Laviku’s domain could be. “Is this your first time sailing?” the Svefra asked curiously as the waters rushed by around them. They’d make it to Lodestar Isle in no time at this rate.

When he explained their purpose, she nodded thoughtfully and started gently veering the vessel northeast toward their destination. She took the revelation in stride, hardly even reacting beyond the sparkle of fascination in her gaze. Kailani was a little disappointed they would not make landfall, but she also knew it was wise; there was no sense in risking their lives in hostile territory with no stronger cause than appeasing her curiosity. “What exactly will we be observing about the sea traffic?” she asked instead, ever the practical girl, even in the face of such a potentially dangerous quest so suddenly thrust upon her by a stranger. Brave? Or foolhardy? The blue-eyed sailor had often found the concepts to be one and the same. “What should we be looking for?”

With his next question, her levity dissipated. How much would it cost me to keep your services until Syna’s next rise? Color rose to Kailani’s cheeks as she turned back to face him, coils of rage beginning to stir in her belly. The inquiry was entirely reminiscent of her second night in Sunberth, the lecherous drunkard at the Drunken Fish who’d so boldly dared to ask after her “prices.” What was wrong with the wretched citizens of this lawless city? Who exactly did they think she was?

“Look here, now,” she growled, the Svefra woman’s Common even further accented than normal in her anger. “I don’t know what sort of ‘services’ you think I’m providing, but I’m no petching whore,” she coldly informed him, her rage-infused features only inches from his. One hand firmly shoved against the middle of his chest, hard enough to knock him off balance, if not drop him to the deck entirely. Her voice was venomous as she spat, “So, if that’s what you’re after, I’d suggest you start swimming, Kynier. I’m happy to assist you into the water, should you need it.”

Kailani drew in several breaths as she fought to bring her sudden surge of temper under control, an unexpected burst that left her suddenly embarrassed and ashamed. Looking at his expression, she found nothing lewd or suggestive, and color seeped into her face for an entirely different reason than before. She immediately realized what she had done. “That wasn’t what you meant, was it?” she muttered, kicking herself for immediately jumping to such a conclusion. Of course he meant renting the casinor overnight. Why would he mean anything else?

“I deeply apologize, sirrah, I…I have been on edge, of late.” On edge was an understatement. After the events of the past few weeks, both prior to her arrival in Sunberth and after, her temper was shorter than ever before. And here she was, threatening to throw a customer overboard because of it. Get ahold of yourself, Kailani. You’re going to get yourself killed if you don’t. “It’s been…it’s been a trying month.” As if that was an excuse for assault. But it was Sunberth, right?

Her face was sheepish as she looked at him, running her hand over her face as if to wipe away her shame. “If you can forgive me for that, I’ll not charge you anything extra for renting the ship until morning. I swear I am not always quite so…combative.” Whether that was true or not might be contradicted by a select few, but at the very least, she was generally not so hostile toward strangers. Perhaps the city was starting to get to her, after all.

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kynier on October 16th, 2018, 12:31 am

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“I’ve never been on a boat that wasn’t docked in a harbor,” he said. “Never would I have imagined that the wind could propel a vessel this quickly.” The time it would’ve required to sail for Syliras to Sunberth was close to the same as a reckless overland trek. At the time, Kynier felt more comfortable with the idea of facing the potential dangers of the wilderness rather than the helplessness of standing on a boat. To be subject to something as all encompassing as the sea was still terrifying, even now. But now he could understand at least the smallest bit of appeal that sailors and Svefra had to a life at the sea. At least if half of the journeys were as smooth as sailing down this river that is.

Kailani was a very curious woman. Kynier was torn between dissatisfaction and amusement. Dissatisfaction due to his Nightstalker tendencies and preferences of secrecy. Amusement that she may have a similar taste for getting involved in things often best left alone like him. For a moment he weighed the options and their impacts on the night to come. There did not seem to be any harm in giving her some more information to his objective tonight. “The Daggerhand have been withdrawn this season after doing some rather bold actions. Rumors indicate that they are planning something significant. So, I’m checking to see how many boats under their command are traversing between Lodestar Isle and the mainland. We only need to be close enough to be able to identify the ownership of each vessel. I leave it to your judgment on how close that has to be.”

As he watched the intense blue eyes fill with a fire, Kynier immediately knew he had said something to upset her, though he knew not what. As she snarled and approached he dare not move. The Svefra lived on the ocean and was accustomed to walking a weather tossed ship, whereas he felt uncertain with the gentle rocking. His brow furrowed in confusion as Kailani spewed her venom-laced words. How was it that she could think that he…? Kailani stood very close and gave him a shove. The woman had more strength than most of her sex. On dry land the single-handed shove would only have been enough to have made him take a step backwards. They were not on dry land thought.

Unsteady were his feet with the motion of the ship. Kailani’s physical exertion caused Kynier to stumble and fall backwards on his rump. His back impacted against the side of the boat. From his position he stared up at the woman as she made her threat of expelling him from her boat. Understanding of what just transpired dawned on him in the silence after her threat. Kynier chuckled softly as he got to his feet again. Kynier stepped around the woman to take position more in the center of the boat and away from the edges. If she were going to follow through he at least wanted to have more of a fighting chance.

But as she watched his reaction, she seemed to have understood what it was he had not meant with his words. Kynier shook his head while having a slight smirk on his face. “No, Kailani, that’s not what I meant. Though I can understand why you would so quickly think so. However, I am not that sort of man. You would find that there are many qualities of Sunberth men that I do not possess. It is not my native home. Although I imagine that you,” he gestured at her entire form with a single hand, “receive that sort of ‘proposition’ very frequently.” Kynier used to rarely look at women in that way. Now even less so after moving to the Midnight Gem.

Kynier listened to her apology and offer for no additional charge for utilizing her boat throughout the night. He could believe that she was not normally so confrontational. If way she smiled and greeted him onto her boat was any sort of indicator. It was very tempting to take the offer. However, he was not pinching his coppers together as he was only a few seasons ago. After a moment’s thought he sighed heavily. “Forgiveness is not necessary, Kailani. For I should have used a different choice of words. And while your offer is appreciated, it is also unnecessary.”

With a glance he could see that they were getting further out into the open waters. Lodestar Isle was to the northeast. The sea itself had no landmarks to use. No streets that Kynier had spent years understanding to have an intuitive sense of direction. With the sky overcast with clouds he wondered how the sailors knew what direction they were sailing when there was no land mass for reference. All Kynier knew was that they were currently going east because they came from the Mudway.

“Tell me, Kailani, how can you tell what direction your sailing on days like today? I’ve heard that often you sail by the stars. But during the day, with Syna concealed by the clouds, how do you navigate?”

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kailani on October 17th, 2018, 2:08 am

Kailani could hardly believe the man had shrugged off her assault so casually, even if she was happy he had. Back aboard The Wayward Tabernacle, fights were not uncommon when tempers were short. She’d been thrown overboard by one of her brothers on more than one occasion; at least twice with her sisters, as well. Not to say she hadn’t done her fair share of the throwing, but she’d had her ass handed to her enough times to expect at least some retaliation.

She made her way back to the helm with a sense of relief, nonetheless, offering only a smile as a conclusion to the uncomfortable situation. If he wouldn’t accept not paying her, she’d simply ask for a severely cut rate and leave him none the wiser. After all, how would he even know? She had to ease her own conscience, if nothing else.

At his question, Kailani’s smile turned more genuine. She couldn’t imagine how the ocean must seem to those without Laviku’s gift, so familiar it was to her. The Svefra did not even have a conception of a world with no intimate knowledge of the sea. It was as natural to her as breathing, if not even more so. She would not survive without either.

“There are a variety of ways,” Kailani replied as she nudged the vessel a little further northeast before heading back to adjust the sail. She meant to slow their approach as they honed in on their goal; when gangs were involved, one could never be too careful. “On a clear day, you can judge by the height of Syna in the sky or where she sits relative to the horizon.” She gestured vaguely toward the few weak rays pushing wearily through the clouds. “Common sailors often use things like compasses to make sure they’re heading in the right direction.” The look on her face was full of pride and perhaps even a small measure of arrogance as she continued, “But I am Svefra. We have other methods.”

She held her left arm aloft to display the shifting and changing waves of her gently glowing Oceanus mark. “Laviku’s favor gives us special abilities when we are in the water, and one of them is knowing our position on the sea. I can tell the rough distance to land, obstructions in our path, other life around us. That sort of thing.” One slim shoulder lifted in a shrug as they moved in ever closer. “It’s like…another sense for us. Like sight or hearing. I don’t really know how to explain better than that.

“For instance, I can tell you we’re closing in on Lodestar Isle now, and fast, even if you can’t see it yet.” The small island was not that far from the mainland, and the journey wasn’t a long one. Kailani made efforts to slow The Sunset Tide even further as she glanced back toward her companion. “If we wish to remain unnoticed, it’s best to remain back out of sight of the lighthouse and observe traffic from a distance. However, with that, we run the risk of being too far away to properly identify the other ships. Something tells me they won’t exactly have their affiliation emblazoned on the side of the hull.” A grin flitted across her features before she added hopefully, “Unless you have a spyglass?” She’d had one back aboard The Wayward Tabernacle, but, like most of her other possessions, it had been left behind.

“Otherwise, we have a couple different options. We can camp out near Shipwreck Cove. Superstition keeps most sailors away from there, so we don’t run a high risk of being detected. However, that can backfire if we are seen-it will be questioned why we are heading that way.” She shrugged. “Or we can move periodically throughout the day. A vessel sitting in plain sight in the same place for a long time will be noticed and questioned. These aren’t normal fishing waters, and we’re obviously not a ship that works from this area. But if we move…Fewer eyes will see us more than once, and are unlikely to recognize us as being anything out of the ordinary.”

Kailani was not a spy by any means, but she knew a thing or two about stealth on the water. She’d joined her pod in many a raid and had learned early on how to stalk other ships and remain unseen. “So, what do you say, Kynier? You know the Daggerhands and Sunberth better than I. Tell me what you think our best option is and what we need to look for, and I’ll do my very best to keep us alive and afloat.”

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kynier on October 20th, 2018, 1:48 am

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As the ship moved, so did Kynier. He took position at the base of the mast and leaned against it slightly. Being towards the center of the ship it seemed the most likely place for the least amount of pitching. The Sunset Tide was leaving the mainland behind and the waves of Laviku’s domain were welcoming it. Kynier’s breathing became much more of a conscious effort as his core began to unsettle. With the hood of his cloak up it was difficult to see that his face was paling. He felt his cheeks blanching in preparation to vomit. The motion of the ship was not so violent as to provide that last shift of his insides, which would incite them to violent action.

His lips clamped shut in response to what his stomach was proposing. With a deep breath he turned his head to watch the Svefra as she explained the many ways a person could navigate the waters. When she raised her arm Kynier observed the tattoo on the flesh. It took a moment to realize that it wasn’t a tattoo, but an ever-moving gnosis bestowed Laviku. Kynier narrowed his eyes curiously at it. The gnosis of his goddess, Akajia, did not have that similar quality. Though, it was placed between his shoulder blades and he himself had never seen it. But the mark he had seen on a fellow Nightstalker was stationary. That was a bit intriguing.

Kynier shook his head, “No.” Before now he did not know what the name of that particular telescope was. While Sunberth was a port city, Kynier had never considered getting one, though they were most likely in abundance at the market. Or at least in constant demand. Such a tool would help him in a lot of his efforts and tasks. Yet, he still wouldn’t get one. It made it too obvious that you were looking at something intently in the urban environment. Listening to Kailani’s suggestions on how they could observe the other vessels, Kynier was growing more thankful for selecting this woman’s ship.

What knowledge he had no ships was restricted to what he could see. The Sunset Tide was smaller than most and would be easy to conceal at a distance. If the Daggerhand possessed larger ships, they would probably not take an interest in them unless they were obvious in their observance. Though, Kynier did not like the idea of floating in the same place to be easily seen. Shipwreck Cove did not seem like a terrible idea, but more of a risky one. They would at least be concealed from the sound of it. With the weather as it was, being noticed could prove tricky to the other ships.

“The Daggerhand makes an effort to not harm ‘bystanders’, like the other gangs. However, they have no issues killing when their territory is encroached upon by anyone. With that in mind, we should take refuge in Shipwreck Cove. And set out on occasion to get a closer look at any of the more interesting vessels that we may see.” It seemed like as good of a plan as any. Exactly how feasible it was, Kynier had no idea. This was definitely something that would be left more to Kailani’s expertise.

A sudden urge to hold of him, one that he could not explain. Kynier traversed to the side of the vessel with the awkward motion of a man at sea without sea-legs. Once he was at the side, he grasped a rope from the rigging to hold onto and lowered his hood with the other hand. The rush of air felt more substantial and the gentle pattering of rain on his skin from the drizzle was soothing. It did not cure him of his building sea-sickness, but it assisted in abating it. “There is another curiosity that I have, Kailani,” he shouted over his shoulder. “Where did the name The Sunset Tide come from? That seems like something that would have an interesting story involved.”

Before long, Kynier could begin to see the light from the Lighthouse that stood upon Lodestar Isle. The single beam of light swiveled around, cutting through the haze of the weather to signal the island’s location. Kynier cast a glance around the water and could see no other vessels. It was difficult to say if he was more hopeful for there to be no vessels, or several, during the course of the next day.

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Fare Sailing (Kailani)

Postby Kailani on October 22nd, 2018, 2:34 am

Shipwreck Cove. A grin fair split Kailani’s features at Kynier’s response. That was the option she’d secretly hoped he would choose. It was a destination she’d long wished to explore, but had yet lacked the nerve to do so. At least with this, she had an excuse. Foolish, some might call it, but she didn’t care. This was turning out to be a far more interesting fare than any other she would have picked up that day.

The Svefra by nature were a superstitious lot, but the young woman at the helm held no such inhibitions. Her pod had always told her that her lack of caution and overabundance of curiosity would be her downfall, but she shrugged off the notion. Prudence might have kept them alive, but a life lived in caution was no life at all. Not as far as Kailani was concerned. She had an unrestrained zest for life and an adventurous heart that was impossible to tame; these sorts of ventures were what she lived for. The unexpected, the unusual, the unconventional…these were the things that kept the Svefra woman afloat in the tumultuous waves of the world’s chaos and cruelty.

“Shipwreck Cove it is, then,” Kailani replied, trying her best (and utterly failing) not to sound too pleased. She understood that it was serious business they were about, but that didn’t mean she couldn’t enjoy it. “We can linger toward the mouth of the cove. That way, we’ll have better visibility and can beat a hasty retreat, if need be.” Hopefully, that wouldn’t be necessary, but there were cases in which caution was necessary. The seafarer liked to think she was smart enough to know the difference.

It seemed Kailani was not the only curious one of the pair. When Kynier asked her about the name of her ship, her face softened, a gentler smile then tugging at the corner of her mouth. Of course The Sunset Tide had a story. Her casinor was one of the most precious things in her life—how could it not?

“My father was a shipwright, and we were based around Zeltiva at the time,” Kailani began her tale as they pulled within view of the lighthouse. “He, my eldest brother, and I built this ship while we were in port. My first casinor of my own. I can’t remember if I’ve ever been so excited as I was the day it was finished.”

She gently nudged said ship into the quiet waters of the cove and started lowering the sail. Kai didn’t intend to drop the anchor, just in case they needed to make any quick moves, but it wouldn’t do for a sudden gust of wind to catch the sail and send them back into open water. “I was about sixteen at the time, and heady with the freedom it could provide. A bit young for my own ship, perhaps, but as I’ve said before, the Svefra are different. I swam before I could walk; the deck of a ship was far more familiar to me than dry land. And I was the Lia’s daughter, besides; there was little I couldn’t have, if I truly wished for it.”

A shadow passed over Kai’s face at the mention of her mother, but it was gone in an instant. She went on, “I took her out on her maiden voyage that very day, my first time sailing on my own. I’d sailed a casinor before, but always with someone older and more experienced at my back. Naturally, my first time out, I got caught in a storm.”

Her laugh was dry as she shook her head. “Looking back on that day, I’ve often wondered if my father knew. I think he did. I think he sent me out for exactly that reason; he wanted to see how I would fare on rougher waters. Some might call it insensitive, but everything he did, he did with a reason. He knew I was a tough girl, and he only sought to make me tougher. He wanted to make sure I could survive on my own.

“But I digress.” There was little that could get Kailani talking as much as asking about her boat.

“Every major event in my life has been accompanied by a storm,” the Svefra continued. “Whether that is by coincidence, or by Laviku’s own design, I do not know, but this time was no different. When I heard that first rumble of thunder rolling over the horizon, my heart sank. I’d sailed through storms before—how could I not?—but never on my own, and never in a vessel so small. I had to use every trick I’d ever learned, both with my gnosis and without, in order to stay afloat and upright. But I did, and when the storm finally ended and the clouds slunk away…I bore witness to the most beautiful sunset I’d ever seen. Both before that day and ever since.”

Her smile turned wistful as she turned to gaze out over the still waters surrounding them. “It was like a dream. I’d never seen the sky painted with such color, such utter magnificence. Tears fell from my eyes at the sight. I still get choked up when I think about it.” It was true; when she turned back to face her companion, her oceanic gaze was more than a little glassy. “The tide at that sunset is what brought me back to my pod and back to my home. The ship’s name is a reminder that no matter how bad things get, no matter how terrifying life can be, the sunset tide will always carry me home.”

Each day she spent in Sunberth, however, she found that faith wavering. Just as she’d said to Kynier before, storms precipitated every major turn of her life; and what had brought her to this cursed city but a storm? The wheels of fate were turning, she knew, but she wasn’t sure how much she’d like the way they turned.

There are other times for such thoughts, the woman told herself firmly as she pulled herself from her brief bout of melancholy and forced a smile to her face. Another soft laugh parted her lips. “So there you have it. The Sunset Tide. A little sappier than perhaps you might have expected, eh?”

Kailani chuckled, her gaze warm. “Now that I’ve thoroughly filled your ears with tidbits of my own history, what about you, Kynier? You said before you weren’t from Sunberth. Where do you come from, then? And what brought you here?”

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