Completed Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket I

Tazrae stays up all night on her birthday.

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket I

Postby Tazrae on December 31st, 2020, 4:04 am

Timestamp: 21st of Winter, 520 A.V.


Winter wasn’t what it used to be. In Riverfall they’d get snow, ice, and days upon days of frigid weather where The Bluevein River would freeze over and the great fall of water would become a beautiful arch of ice down to the bay. It was a beautiful sight, but Tazrae didn’t miss that weather. She didn’t miss bundling up in furs just to take a trip to the market or the library. And she certainly didn’t miss the death of all her courtyard plants. Their demise had destroyed a piece of her heart each and every year.

Here in Syka, the Winter was beautiful. The sweltering days of Summer with their huge fluctuations in temperature smoothed out and became a mild low deviation of sunshine that was punctuated by warm rainfall. Flowers bloomed year-round. The jungle stayed green and now somewhat welcoming to Tazrae as she increased her knowledge of survival within its depths. The humidity dropped off in the winter and it felt less like a sauna and more hospitable to the average human. Folks unused to the blistering temperatures and cloying thick humidity of Syka’s summers would probably not recognize the current season as being anything but a summer elsewhere. Though in truth, it wasn’t Summer at all. It was the cusp of the Winter Solstice and Tazrae’s Birthday.

So much had changed over the past year. Tazrae knew the world was going to continue turning and they’d never be at this same point again. A new year was coming, and she was still trying to process the previous year and all that had happened. She had made important decisions for herself, moved across the sea, built a business, made friends, gained family, and taken a lover… or rather had been taken by one. She was a mage now, and even that was hard to process. Studying new things helped, including new religions. Tazrae was trying to expand her education which had been becoming more and more clear to her was lacking. Oh sure, her parents had made sure she could do all things domestic. But in terms of actually teaching her about the world, things like The Gods and Goddesses, even the cultures and races of Mizahar… she knew next to nothing.

So, she’d been out here all night, on the beach where it wasn’t too cool or too hot… feeding a fire and reading where she wouldn’t disturb anyone. Her Inn was full up. Even the room she normally kept as her own had been leased out and would be taken for a few days. That meant she had no bed and had to sleep on the beach with Bree, which that really hadn’t been a burden at all.

The Ixam was curled up behind her, making a nice warm backrest. The jungle lizard loved the fire and nights like this where Tazrae stayed out late. Such times gave them a chance to talk, so their conversations usually ranged far and wide. Bree talked about her life, growing up among the free people in Falyndar, and how unhappy she’d been. In many ways, she was still unhappy. She missed the company of other Ixam. They were group animals and needed their own kind. But since she’d been changed and was smarter, she wasn’t sure she’d fit in any longer with those of her kin. Taz remembered how she’d changed Bree – with the rod – and had promised the Ixam if she ever found another she’d save it and change another Ixam to keep Bree company with.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
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Medals: 2
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Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket I

Postby Tazrae on December 31st, 2020, 4:08 am

They’d talked long into the night, and when that had worn thin, Taz had read to Bree from her book on religions. She was in the process of doing that now when a shadow materialized walking slowly up the beach. The figure startled her since it was still dark – no sign of twilight in the sky – and the person had no light with them. Tall, male, in a steady sure stride Tazrae recognized. Duncan. Bree was already scenting the air, but the breeze was blowing seaward from the shore, carrying his scent away from her.

She smiled when he grew closer, watching him tilt his head to the side and listen to the crackling of her bonfire. “Taz?” He asked carefully.

“I’m here. Bree too. Join us?” She invited, calling out clearly over the breeze and the sea gently lapping further down the sand. The Ixam lifted her snout, called a clear whistle of a greeting, and dropped her head back down on her forelegs.

Duncan walked into the circle of firelight, carefully skirting the dancing flames until he reached out, felt Bree’s flank, and then circled around her to the fireside to settle beside Tazrae. Had she not known he was blind, the Innkeeper wouldn’t have guessed it by his actions. He never once stumbled, hesitated, or did anything but using the Ixam’s big body for guidance.

He held a bundle in his arms which he held out to her. “From James. He brought it back with him on the last run. It’s from your mother’s husband. He sent you a good deal of coin along with this letter, which James kept hold of rather than sending it with me. He said it was a good thirteen hundred Mizas and you probably didn’t want that lying around the Inn. He sent a note with it. He didn’t want you to use it to pay off your loan unless you wanted to. He said you should spend it on joy because your Inn was doing so well and he wasn’t worried about your loan at all.” Duncan said, somewhat uncomfortable discussing Tazrae’s personal business with James.

“I’m sorry, I’m not trying to get into your business, but he told me what to tell you rather than give you a voucher. Truthfully, he couldn’t find the scrap paper to spare. And when he was given the things last season, he was told to hold onto them until tonight… because it was your birthday.” He said, his lips flickering upwards momentarily amused.

“How… oh my stepfather must have learned my birthday from my mother.” She said thoughtfully and glanced over at Duncan. “That makes me twenty-three tonight. You know, I’ve never asked you how old you are.” She said, fingering the bundle in her hand. She had no idea what it was… what her mother would have to say to her… or even her stepfather if he was the one to write her.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket I

Postby Tazrae on December 31st, 2020, 4:10 am

“Twenty-nine.” He answered automatically, then caught her wrist briefly – just to still her fidgeting - where she had been nervously twisting the packet in her hands. “Do you need to be alone to open it? I don’t want to pry. I’m just the messenger here.” He added softly.

“No no… I just….” She twisted the items again, then glanced over at Duncan.

“I feel guilty I left as I did. I just packed a bag and went with James, trusting him more than I ever trusted anyone but my father. I… James reminds me of my father in fact. I think that’s why I so readily agreed to come with him. But… I couldn’t stay in Riverfall. I left my mother like she was nothing. I didn’t want to see her happy with my step-father. It felt like a betrayal to my father, even though he was dead. I didn’t want to see her used as a broodmare either. Do you know she was already heavily pregnant when I left? It has been more than a year. They’ve never written and I’ve never asked about their child. I stayed with them half a season before James made his offer and it was almost unbearable. The two of us… we never saw eye-to-eye. It was like she was just some woman in my life. There was no closeness, no bond, and everything she did was to prepare me for a sort of life in Riverfall I never wanted.” Tazrae said softly. She watched Duncan’s expression in the firelight even as Bree lifted her head and hissed.

“They don’t sound like people I would like either.” The Ixam said thoughtfully and dropped her head back on her crossed forelegs. “Tazrae, you are well rid of them and doing well here in Syka. Think nothing of them and don’t let your mother upset you.” She added, the advice so well placed that even Duncan nodded.

“Before you get too upset, make sure you have a reason too. It seems odd that your stepfather sent you coin. Why don’t you read what the letter says?” He suggested, shifting so he was sitting close to her. He dropped a hand down onto her lap, gripping her thigh closest to him gently. “Maybe its good news.” He suggested, though his tone was injected with doubt. Duncan had heard too much from Tazrae – or overheard rather – to have much faith in anything from Riverfall and her family there being good news. James had indicated as much as well, though the letter didn’t have a seal broken on it. It was more of a packet than a letter as if it contained a contract of sorts. That worried him. The coinless so, for the Akalak were known to be wealthy.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket I

Postby Tazrae on December 31st, 2020, 4:15 am

Tazrae slowly unfolded James’ note and read it outloud.

Hey Taz…

Your family in Riverfall sent the sum of 1300 gold to you, insisting it was your share of your mother’s inherence that came to them this Fall after your grandfather died on her side. I have the physical coin with me in the vault at Mathias’ home. You can apply it to your loan, come get it, or open credit at the store or with any of the Founders in case you want Randal to build you something.

It’s your coin, I just didn’t want Duncan lugging it over to your place if you were just going to drag it back to pay a bill or do some haggling with Randal. I know when I mentioned it to him he was hoping you’d use it to put a second story on your Inn so you’d actually not have to sleep on the beach or deck so often when you get full up.

I hope the night finds you well.

And btw, we heard about Duncan inducting you. Congrats. And Happy Birthday. There is a little something on the back of this letter from us.

-Love, James



She read the letter aloud, then flipped the letter over.

Check Duncan’s left pocket.



She laughed aloud and glanced at Duncan.

His laughter joined hers and he nodded. “Sorry, I’d forgotten. Here.” He said and pulled a necklace with a pendant on it from his pocket. He reached over spreading his fingers out until he touched her forehead gently, then gracefully traced her forehead until he’d slipped a leather necklace around her neck letting the pendant fall heavily to her chest.

The stone was an opal and had a copper chain on it. It was about the size of her thumb, but in truth not heavy at all. “It’s a birthday present from them. It is a magical necklace that their visiting friend… that drummer Akvin… made for you. It adapts so you can breathe in multiple environments you normally couldn’t before… water, bad air, heavy dust… it adapts.” He explained. “They used to be more common among mages, but I think the trick of crafting them has been lost over time. That friend is a magecrafter. It’s a type of magic that can imbue items with traits like this. In fact… I had him make one for me to gift to you as well. I couldn’t come see you on your birthday empty handed except for a packet of letters could I?” He said softly, then reached into his other pocket.

Tazrae stared at him in disbelief. She had spent so many birthdays alone after her father died. He’d always made a big deal out of her turnings, but when he was gone, her mother hadn’t even remembered. She’d always thought it odd. But to have someone else remember when she hadn’t even told him… Tazrae blinked back tears. “Thank you… it means a lot to have someone remember.” She said softly, not sure what to say.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket I

Postby Tazrae on December 31st, 2020, 4:16 am

Duncan pulled what looked like a deeply golden snake coiled into the shape of an armband out of his pocket. He found Tazrae’s left hand, stretched it upwards, and slipped the armband on it sliding it all the way up her arm to where it would rest comfortably. “It’s called The Reptile’s Promise. It grants the wearer immunity from any reptile based poison or venom regardless of how its delivered. Snakebites will not harm the wearer even if it was a poisonous snake, nor will poisons made from snake venom (or the venom of other reptiles) actually affect the wearer. He added every known snake poison he could find. The Rangers helped, gathering specimens for him to harvest venom from to make the item. You’ll never have to fear eyelash vipers again.” He said, leaning over and brushing his lips softly across hers.

“I don’t want to lose you to that sort of accident ever. When I heard you’d gotten bitten and were fighting off the venom, I sat with you for a while. You probably don’t remember because you were so out of it, but the healer needed a break, and I was available to play nurse while he was sleeping. You were delirious for so long, talking about this or that, even asking for your father. I sat through that first night holding your hand, wiling you not to die. You were so alone… so beautiful. Even delirious, you stole my breath….” He paused, then lightened his tone. “It would have looked terrible to outsiders to lose our Innkeeper in her first year here.” Duncan teased lightly.

Tazrae laughed abruptly, then took Duncan’s hand. She leaned over and returned his kiss, lingering on his lips. She drew the kiss out, not as a thank you for the presents but as something else, something deeper. “I haven’t had enough time with you lately. With the Inn full, I’m so busy cooking and cleaning. I need to hire more help. I miss you.” She whispered, her eyes searching his face as if looking for a similar sentiment there. It only took her a moment to find it, so she leaned forward and kissed him again, lighter, more playfully.

Bree snorted. “Do I need to give you two some privacy?” She asked almost sourly. The mage and the Innkeeper had forgotten for a moment they weren’t alone. Both turned and looked at her, almost identically surprised then apologetic expressions on their faces.

“My apologies, lady.” Duncan said thoughtfully.

“No no… stay. I have to see what my mother said.” Tazrae said, settling down but only after taking a moment to finger the armband and necklace. Syka was full of surprises… and unexpected friends. It startled her to learn Duncan had sat with her while she had been fighting off the venom. Why had he done that? He had been a stranger to her. She’d helped strangers here in Syka, but to sit all night with a snakebitten stranger? Tazrae stared at him a moment before she studied the packet in her hands.

She slowly broke the seal and opened it up. The first was a letter from her stepfather. Shocked, she scanned the contents, her emotions frozen. Then slowly, her hands began to shake, and she glanced at Duncan who reached out and gripped her wrists holding them firm.

“What’s wrong?” He asked, surprised concern lacing his voice.


Continued In: Catch A Falling Star & Put It In Your Pocket II

Word Count: 2614
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User avatar
Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)


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