Closed So Fair a Gift

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A city floating in the center of a lake, Ravok is a place of dark beauty, romance and culture. Behind it all though is the presence of Rhysol, God of Evil and Betrayal. The city is controlled by The Black Sun, a religious organization devoted to Rhysol. [Lore]

So Fair a Gift

Postby Belugnir on February 28th, 2019, 7:00 pm

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Winter 35th AV, forests near the lakeshore.

Ein hadn't been keen on leaving Zavya by her lonesome at their camp, nor was he particularly enthralled by having to potentially argue over it with her, let alone after her recent injuries and being as close to the city proper as they were compared to some of the lengths to which they'd distanced their encmapments previously... Still, the girl had plenty of time to recover from the wounds earned a couple nights ago, was healing up nicely... and was certainly no pushover. Besides, it had been but a few days short of a full month since they'd so narrowly evaded Ryker at the docks and took their leave of the city... And they had acquired some rather easily spoiled, abandoned goods in the form of plentiful exotic fruit crates several nights ago.

It was one vast hustle, bringing Finnard along for a four bell ferry ride across the lake, loaded with packs of peaches and apricots that would turn bad in but a couple more days, was a bigger hustle yet finding a buyer once within the city. His facade made of a fine-sewn robe and having his crazed hair gathered into a bun hardly helped any either, for it was rather difficult to point away from mismatched, ever scronful eyes glaring from an equally mismatched face and crowned by a copper head of hair that had vast straps of gray and white running through it. On top of that he hadn't a real chance to properly keep his one finer set of clothing as clean and preserved as such a piece ought to have been... And so, ultimately, after nearly getting into a scrap with some guards and a couple of stall-keepers in the market, he settled to fence the fruits in for what he imagined was about a quarter of what the damned things were actually worth... If anything, Fin seemed happy to have the weight off of his back... not as happy about the narrow pathways and bridges in the midst of abyss-deep lake water that his owner guided him through. It was the pony's first time within Ravok's city proper, after all.

Once his purse was a slim sixty gold pieces heavier, Ein would set upon the more straining task of acquiring some insight into the matter of just how hot on Zavya's trail her master's men were... or if the situation had changed at all from the day the two of them left the northern dock.

The means to an answer found him by surprise, sooner than he'd ever expected... And as if his mood wasn't shaken enough by stuck-up nordling merchants and their black guard patrols, he would come returning to the lakeshore in the company of yet another passenger... A deed he was conflicted with... It was all so very... bitter-sweet.

It would be early afternoon when Ein came walking back to the vicinity of their camp, one figure hidden under a heavy cloak in tow. And upon their arrival, he would call out to the tigress with a plain and unassuming: ''Zavya!'', before turning to the one beside him with an ounce of backwards self-satisfaction.''I've something rather fine for you.''


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Belugnir
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So Fair a Gift

Postby Shiress on February 28th, 2019, 7:05 pm

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The forest floor crunched and popped beneath Shiress's booted footsteps as she trailed along behind the sellsword, eyes downcast, carefully watching the path before her, her thoughts pleasantly scattered.

Since disembarking the boat some chimes earlier and disappearing through the treeline, Shiress had become increasingly silent, anticipation for the forthcoming reunion stealing away any desire for idle talk. To be honest, though, she hadn't spoken much at all to Einar beyond her initial begging for him to bring her along with him to see Zavya. She figured he might tolerate her presence far better without her incessant prattling, as he calls it, but, despite her small effort, Shiress got the feeling that she still annoyed him to no end.

She wondered if Einar blamed her for his current state of forced concealment. He should. Shiress blamed herself. Elias blamed her, too, and rightly so. She had made a terrible mistake. A mistake that would forever change lives, if not ultimately end them. She had shown weakness; weakness of judgment, weakness of strength, and weakness of mind, but she would learn from it.

Shiress regretted the night she had sought Zavya out at her Master's house, but she couldn't rightly bring herself to regret the nights that had followed, though. Shiress grinned at the memory. The four nights she had spent with Zavya was a treasured time of sensual discoveries and had forged a unique bond of friendship that would never be forgotten. Sadly, though, those nights could never be repeated.

It had not been Shiress's betrayal that had angered Elias. No, it was her own careless actions resulting in her getting captured and injured that had ignited Elias's fury. Nevertheless, Shiress still vowed to her Soldier that she would never again bed another, be it male or female, for as long as they were together. It was just one of many ways that Shiress would venture to rectify the fault. He deserved that and so much more after all he had done for her. The memory of Elias's angered words still stung Shiress and left her feeling guilty every time she recollected them, but now, glancing around to what her foolish undertaking had reduced Zavya's life to, Shiress knew that Elias was wholly justified in his anger.

The abrupt halt to the sound of Einar's footsteps brought Shiress from her thoughts, instinct driving her to shelter behind the nearest tree. One did not know Shiress and not know that trouble always found its way to her and none knew it better than herself. Heart pounding, she waited for the inevitable, but when she heard the sellsword speak, she smiled.

Shiress stepped out from the tree, green eyes searching for that familiar golden gaze. Finding it, Shiress eased back the hood of her cloak, lips parting in a wide smile.

"Zavya!"

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Last edited by Shiress on February 28th, 2019, 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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So Fair a Gift

Postby Zavya on February 28th, 2019, 7:09 pm

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Like Einar, Zavya had not been overly fond of the idea of being left behind. While the last thing the Kelvic wanted to do was step a single paw back in Ravok proper, she was certainly not a fan of her companion going without her. What if he was held up? What if he got caught? What if he… No! She couldn’t let him go alone!

Her arguments were loud and long, but ultimately useless. He was going, and she was staying, and there was nothing she could say to change his mind. It was too dangerous for her to come, he insisted, even as she insisted it was too dangerous for her to stay. If something happened and he couldn’t come back, what was she to do? How long could she survive out here on her own? If she couldn’t go back to the Valdinox and she couldn’t stay here, what was she supposed to do? Where was she supposed to go?

Growling and griping all the way, she saw him off that morning, adding yet more protestations before he could depart. However, he turned a deaf ear to them all, simply informing her he’d return and then heading off on his way. Stiff-legged and offended, Zavya stalked off the other way—woman soon shifting to tiger and disappearing into the surrounding wood.

For bells, she stalked in large circles around the camp, ignoring the twinge of recent injury between her shoulders while she roamed. Each scenario that played through her head was worse than the last as she imagined the various horrific fates Einar could meet along the way. Mugged, kidnapped, detained, tortured, even killed… Zavya growled and struck the earth with her front paws, sending a scattering of birds flying from the trees. No! That won’t happen!

The Kelvic tried to keep her worries under control as she watched Syna start to dip below the horizon, stopping every few paces to see if she could catch a familiar scent on the air. Finally, something seemed to pique her attention, the cat standing still while she fought to sort out whether it was fact or fiction. Was it him or merely wishful thinking? Had he made it back all right?

Zavya! I’ve got something mighty fine for you.

Upon hearing Einar’s familiar voice break through the wood, the tigress jerked her head up, her excitement at his anxiously awaited return only outweighed by her relief. The feline practically loped out from the tree line and back into the camp, skidding to a halt upon seeing another figure step out from behind him. Her lip started to curl, molten eyes glaring from under a fierce brow while a growl built in her chest. Who was this now? Why did he look so… smug? Was he being threatened? Was she betray—Shiress! It was Shiress! By all the gods, he’d brought her Shiress!

Zavya’s demeanor instantly shifted—fierce predator turned to joyful kitten in less than a tick. A stream of ecstatic chuffs left the cat’s lips as she resumed her hectic pace from before, coming to a stop in front of the gorgeous human with a look of pure adoration. Another chuff and she was brushing up against the woman’s hip, winding around her body like the largest and happiest of house cats. Einar was not excluded from this feline display of affection, the ardor on her face a near reflection of what she’d shown Shiress. Her head met his hip next before winding figure eights of pure delight around the pair of them.

This endearing display lasted at least a chime or more before Zavya stepped back, a flash of swirling light illuminating the darkened campsite. Within two ticks, scarred arms encircled the shorter woman’s thin frame, pulling her close and breathing in the delightfully floral scent of her hair. “You’re here!” she cried in delight, pulling back just enough to cup her face and look into those beloved emerald eyes. “I can’t believe you’re here!”

For a brief moment, the Kelvic’s gaze lingered on the woman’s lips, everything in her begging her to lean forward and close the distance between them. But after the encounter with Elias and Rook, the conflict and heartache that had risen within her darling human when confronted about their affair… it felt wrong, like throwing oil on a fire that might take consume them all. She had no wish to cause Shiress pain, not any more than she already had.

Aside from all that, there was Einar. Five nights ago had seen a shift in their relationship, a poignant tenderness now in the midst of their gruff banter. The glances that passed between them were pining and lingering, an underlying heat barely concealed that had never been there before. They were quicker to drop a laugh, to share a touch; where before, they’d only growled and recoiled from the other. To kiss her with him standing there as the source of their reunion felt nearly as wrong… for reasons that still yet frightened her to think of.

So there Zavya stood, with the only two humans that had ever mattered to her, her feelings for both of them a mix of confusion in how similar and different they were at the same time. With a massive amount of restraint, the Kelvic dropped a kiss on Shiress’s cheek instead, nuzzling against her before stepping back and letting her hands fall to her sides. Even if she couldn’t taste that honeyed sweetness again, it did nothing to diminish her elation at seeing her again. Zavya could hardly believe she was here.

The tigress at last took her eyes off Shiress and turned them on the grizzled mercenary at her side, that look alone speaking volumes of her gratitude. To be brought such a gift… it was more than she ever could have asked for. The smile on her face rivalled even the brightness of Syna’s rays, stepping over and wrapping her arms around his neck with an almost childlike glee. “Thank you,” she whispered in his ear, nuzzling him as she had Shiress.

Stepping back, she looked between them, reaching out to twine the woman’s fingers in her grasp. After a moment, her smile turned to a frown; joy morphing to worry as Zavya looked closer at her face. “Wait… why are you here?” she asked suspiciously, gazing into Shiress’s eyes as if she might find the answer there. “Is everything all right?” Panic suddenly flared within her breast, heart rate accelerating for an entirely different reason now. Her voice went up nearly an octave when she asked, “Is Ryker looking for you? Are you hiding now too?”

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