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Flushed Into The Open

Flushed Into The Open

Post by Ryalyn Kylana on

Ryalyn walked with more and more confidence as she spied the city shining in the morning light across the river. The sun was rising brilliantly over the mountains surrounding Thar Shaddin and glistened on the roof tops and the raging waters of the river. As she drew closer to the bridge she could hear the roaring waters getting louder and more defined, its sound highlighted with the shouts of fisherman and shipping men just getting to their days work.

She also noted, as she walked along, that a throng of work goers and travelers were beginning their trudging walk to the city. It seemed that a few people lived on the outskirts of the forest and were making their way to the city for their daily work and shopping. Mothers with their children and men in their work clothes swarmed the main road into the city as well as travelers who chose to camp on the outskirts for free versus paying for a room at an inn.

When she crossed the bridge she looked over the edge smiling down at the sparkling water. Just beneath the surface she could see the fish skillfully alluding the trappers. Continuing on she took a look around at her fellow travelers. Quite a few seemed to be from other places like herself. In fact, quite a few seemed to be visiting the sole purpose of trade or just traveling through. She shared a comforted thought with Ayden at this pleasant thought. The city was not like Shim, where even the most skilled would be hard put to avoid notice as Shim was so small. But here ...

She passed through the gates thrown wide to the approaching travelers on the other side of the river, taking note of the men standing guard in their towers and at the gates themselves. The guards seemed to be there mainly for show however, since they seemed to take so little notice to those passing through. Only once did she see them shift suddenly alert as their superior officer came passing through. Chuckling inwardly to herself she smiled slyly, her mirth hidden by the hood she wore.

Once she was inside the city, she began to fully understand why so many people took to hiding in the cities. So many people and so many places to hide in... There were countless side streets and alleys and a multitude of nooks and crannies to stash things. It was startling that she hadn't thought of hiding in a place like this before.

Rya made sure to take careful note of her surroundings as she continued down what apparently was called Main Street. She could see the makings of a water tower to the east and the unmistakable bulky buildings and factories that made up what was most likely the Industrial District of this city. As she progressed down Main Street she noticed that it got busier and busier. She seemed to be nearing the center Downtown area.

More people ... She could feel Ayden shift uncomfortably on her shoulder in his hiding spot. With what mental comfort she could muster she reassured him all would be well. She was much too curious and fascinated to back out of this venture so quickly. Decidedly, she chose to seek out a shop that might have maps and information about the city. It would not do well to bring attention to herself because she didn't know the workings of the city. She could not afford to get caught doing things that she didn't know was illegal or unfavorable. Who knew just how strict the law was in places such as this.

With sharp eyes, she glanced around determinedly, searching out a map maker, a kindly local who would take pity on her and naturally and willingly spill the information she sought.

Post by Anonymous on

The rising sun could be seen all over from its position floating above the surface of the river. Hakanku had to shield his eyes from the glare as he entered the city on horseback. The silver horse that he rode on had so far been good and not done anything sudden like throwing him off of the saddle for no apparent reason, he guessed it was the effect he had on animals, especially horses; they just seemed to not like him. He tried to look forwards and nowhere else, there were masses of people on either side of his horse and he didn't’t like the closeness of it. He tried to hide the discomfort from his face but this was too much of a hard task.

He tried to steer his horse to avoid the thicker crowds, but instead it choose to ignore him and continue keep on at its own pace following the black horse which Damean and Faoil where on ahead of him. The workers were already ready to work for their earnings; he felt pitiful towards all the people that had to work for their money, getting up as the sun rose, perform back-breaking labour until way after the sun was down, whereas he got up when he wanted and done whatever he wanted. He crossed over the bridge without looking either side, his eyes still focused on the dark horse in front of him.

Soon enough he was passing through Marn’s gates, that’s when realization hit him, the whole City was alive…people were everywhere, going on with their daily lives, the city was tightly packed and Hakanku’s imagination began to run wild, he had vivid images of the horse rearing up and throwing him off the saddle in front of everyone, he would be the center of attention. He wiped sweat from his brow and stirred his horse to fasten to speed until he was nearly adjacent to Damean and Faoil. He had to keep his mind off of all the people and the images that his mind continued to produce.

“Urm, where do you think Rya is?” he asked with slight worry sown in to his voice, his face still showed the uneasiness.

Post by Kari Thunderblade on

Faoil had fallen asleep mounted, lulled into slumber by the comforting sounds of bird songs and the rustle of the leaves as the wind blew through them. Though it seemed the rest of the group could stay awake all night with no cost, she couldn’t. Perhaps it was because she was young, or because she wasn’t a seasoned traveler. In any case, she had dozed off. Her wings were unfurled, feeling soft and warm against her back, and a few strands of hair had escaped her ponytail and fell across her face.

When Hakanku spoke, she stirred, coming out of a pleasant dream. At first she did not wish to open her eyes, hoping to return to sleep. She was aware of a stiff, sore feeling in her back from falling asleep sitting up, and her thighs were sore from riding. However, the thing that made her open her eyes was the strange sounds that bombarded her sensitive were-ears.

People were talking and laughing and shouting, greeting one another or yelling for others to get out of their way. The sounds seemed strange and foreign, since it had been so long since she had heard them last. There were other noises too- dogs barking, the clatter of horses’ hooves and wooden wheels on cobble stones, the closing of doors, and the footsteps of many, many people.

The girl sat up, sleepy and disoriented, wondering where she was. The streets were all too cold and linear compared to the smooth, flowing wildness of forest paths. The buildings seemed to hunch forward in a hostile manner, staring at the travelers with windows that looked like blank, unfeeling eyes. Everything was too close, the people jammed together in the streets. There were so many of them, more then she could ever remember seeing in her life. All of the sudden she was struck with the awful thought of transforming in this city, where there were so many people she could kill and devour. The idea alone was enough to force a whimper from her throat.

Suddenly, Faoil realized people were staring at their group, whispering and looking fearful. This confused her greatly, then she remembered that she and Damean had wings. Concentrating, she pulled the appendages back into her body, grimacing at the awful crackling sound as feather and bone was sucked into her skin. She had hoped this would stop the alarm, but it only seemed to make it worse. Fear clouded her gentle blue eyes as confusion became evident on her face. What was going on? Why were people staring? She was scared, and for the first time since she had met Damean, she felt like a freak, a monster.

“Damean,” she whimpered fearfully. “What’s going on? Where are we? I don’t understand.”

Post by Anonymous on

The Journey had been long and tiresome for both Horses and Damean obviously knew that, as they came into town. His hood was raised over his head to disguise his facial features. He knew they were walking into a dangerous town for the "inhuman".

Damean slowly dismounted off of Nightmare, as he heard Faoil's wings crack into her back once again, "Uh oh...." he said softly as he looked around at all the grimacing faces of the Townsfolk.

"Nothing to be alarmed folks... This young girl merely had a flight spell placed upon her for scouting purposes.." He said as he lowered his hood, his human facial features in place of his regular look with the help of his magic, as the townsfolk merely wandered off, murmuring under their voices.

Damean went beside Faoil, and gently whispered into her ear, "People don't like "non-humans" here... so we better keep a low profile" He said and then leaned back up with a smirk.
Last edited by Anonymous on Wed Sep 28, 2005 7:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

The Map-Maker

Post by Ryalyn Kylana on

The bell of the door clanged noisily as she entered, causing her eyes to swivel upward and her nose to wrinkle with suspicious curiosity. She hated when her presence was announced but of course, an owner of a shop had to know who was entering and leaving to avoid theft.

Taking her eyes off the quivering coppery bell, she cast her eyes about the dingy store. It was an old store for sure but well taken care of from the look of things. The owner clearly took pride in his business.

She began browsing the shelves of rolled up maps and atlases. A few were even housed in well bound, old books, and several were hanging on the walls and in the windows as examples of what one expected to find in such a shop. There was even a sign that boasted a talent for making maps or blue prints for practically anything. In fact, she noted, as she picked up a set of blue prints that had fallen behind one of the shelves, the man apparently own blueprints of many of the old buildings and factories, the one in her hand being that of a textile mill, apparently very much like the one she had seen that very morning.

As she placed it back in its rightful place she took note that the owner had come out from the back of the store and was watching her thoughtfully. When she turned to look at him he smiled genially, his bright yet old graying eyes revealing a gentle and honest mind within.

Ryalyn reached up and removed her hood, Ayden quickly ducking into its folds to avoid being seen. As she smiled gracefully back at the old man she knew that he would cause her no trouble.

"Can I help you, miss?" he asked in a kind voice as she approached the counter.

Her eyes, a bright periwinkle blue this morning appeared normal despite their gentle amusement.

"Actually, I do hope so. I'm new in town and I would like a map so I can find my way around." She smiled awkwardly at him as she added thoughtfully, "I'm not exactly used to the city ... "

"Ah! Then you've come to the right place!" He answered with quite a lot of energy for an old man. "I can get you just what you need, as well as a bit of advice which is, of course, no extra charge." He winked at her and came out around the counter. "If you'll follow me..."

The old man, 'Jonas' as he introduced himself, sped off to a shelf near the front of the shop, Rya following curiously in his wake. Mumbling to himself, he thumbed through several rolls of parchment before exclaiming "Ah! Here we are!" as he pulled one of the rolls down. He beckoned her to a table where he spread it out for her to see properly.

"A work of mine a few years old, though I assure you just as up to date. Very nice example of prime mapmaking, done using the older, much finer arts, if I do say so myself! I simply don't use that nonsensical rubbish that they use in the newer shops around!" His tone starting out proud then turned to annoyance as he reminisced about his new age competition.

Rya smiled gently at him and said, "Well, I assure you I quite agree. I've been looking for the perfect shop since I arrived this morning and it seemed to me that yours was by far better than any of those others you speak of."

She was not mocking, only kind and honest and the old man picked up on it immediately. He was quite the clever little man and seemed to have a nose for people and their intentions. As he thanked her for her compliment and their conversation continued she studied the man with sweet, curious eyes. She felt quite fond of him and he was most definitely interesting to her. He had an honorable air about him that spoke of the old ways and old courtesies as was the way with most of the older generations she would come to find in the future. And despite the man living in the middle of the crime ridden city, he still stuck to his morals and good upbringing. Thus, he was exactly the man she had been searching for.

The conversation that she had been taking part in as she thought to herself shifted to sudden seriousness and she paid specifically close attention, pushing all leeward thoughts aside.

Now miss, I must warn you as you are quite fair and seemingly a not-to-distant relative to elves, ... " he paused eyeing her features with sad, serious eyes, "to be extremely careful with any gifts or talents you may have." His voice had dropped to a whisper so that she had to lean in to hear him better.

"I don't mean to offend -" and at this he looked worried at which she placed a kind hand on his, a signal for him to continue, "but my wife was one ... Her father taught me the ancient ways of mapmaking as a matter of fact ... And ... well, she had abilities..."

"Nothing serious," he added quickly, "only a simply healing gift ... and she was taken away. They told her to renounce her ... talent ... but she wouldn't and so they had her disposed of ..." He voice trailed of, tears glittering in his gentle eyes.

Rya patted his hand, understanding immediately his stress on the words he used. He seemed completely unable to say the word 'magic' most likely out of painful memories of the past lingering as present fears. Soothingly she said quite earnestly, "I assure you I will be extremely careful." She looked deep into his eyes. She saw something stirring there and saw the outward movement of the man shaking himself to his senses.

He cleared his throat and said more strongly though dropping to a whisper once more to avoid being overheard, "I'm glad to hear you say so. Any sign or use of talent is illegal here and will end you up in jail and I'd hate to see such a nice girl like you have her life end so quickly and at such a young age." At this he laughed and sat up straiter, motioning to himself as he did so. "Besides, so few people reach the ripe old age of me anymore, I hardly have much company!" She laughed heartily with him, smiling genially.

"Well, we better get you rung up and moving. I'm sure you have much to do here in the city. And much to see besides!" He stood, leading her to the counter where he gave her the cost (much reduced than she knew it should be) and she gave him the money (more than the original cost). He looked at the extra money with concern and motioned as if to give it back but she shook her head and smiled.

"You have been much to helpful to me today and I gladly give you a tip." She winked at him in much the same way he had earlier and took the map off the counter, depositing it gently into her rucksack. Hesitantly he stared at the money and then, with her encouragement, deposited it where it belonged, smiling genuinely at her.

"Thank you kindly miss!" he said, his old zest in him again.

"And thank you, kind sir! May you always stay in business for those of us who wander lost..."

With a last flashing smile she drew her hood up over her head, hiding her face, and turned, departing graciously out of the tinkling door.

Post by Anonymous on

Hakanku noticed the streets getting busier and more tightly packed as they moved deeper in to the city, he hated this environment and already wanted to get out of it…what sort of thief was he? Afraid of big crowds, where people where at their weakest, and pick pocketing was as easy as breathing. He realized that Faoil had fallen asleep and he woke her when he spoke. Hakanku pulled his cloak tighter around his body and kept the wicked images of horses away from his mind. His blue eyes scanned the people around him, eventually he began to realize that many of the people where staring at him, Damean and Faoil, he did not realize what it was until he saw Faoil fold her wings, they somehow seemed to merge in to her skin, instead of being alarmed Hakanku kept his cool face, he didn’t want to alert more people to the party.

Hakanku kept silent as he saw Faoil speak softly to Damean, he was almost shocked as he heard Damean speak loudly to the crowd around them, his face remained motionless, apart from the odd blink of his eyelids. He watched as the people continued on with their daily businesses, Hakanku turned to face Damean whispering something to Faoil. He pulled his cloak tighter once more, a chilled breeze drifted across him…he assumed that these citizens where used to seeing magical curses and other such items, they turned their backs on Faoil quite fast, but why had they taken so much interest in the first place? Maybe they had not seen such magic…

Hakanku was glad to be out of the forest, but now he had no objective, he was content when he was in the forest, getting out of it was the only thing he could think of…but what now?

Post by Kari Thunderblade on

Faoil was relieved when the townsfolk went back to their business, but she was still a bit confused. Damean’s information only made it worse. “But why?” she asked quietly. “We can’t help what we are, any more then they can help being human. I didn’t ask to be bitten, you know. It’s not like we really have a choice.”

The girl broke off and looked at the crowd. She could almost smell the fear and distrust in them, and it was upsetting. She didn’t want to be hated for who she was. Damean seemed to be alright with it, but she guessed he had dealt with that sort of thing all his life. He had never really known his parents, after all, whereas she had lived with hers for most of her life, and had just become “non-human” recently.

“Where are we going, anyway?” she asked Damean curiously, her voice back at normal volume with it’s usual childish edge returning. She didn’t see what was so interesting about the city, aside from its decidedly morbid feel. She would much rather be back in the woods, safe among the leaves and animals. There, if she was in danger, she could transform and take care of herself. In a city filled with magic haters, she could do nothing of the sort.

Besides, it was hardly likely that any danger among these streets and buildings would be anything as simple as a bear or wildcat. No, it seemed that it would come from a much different source, hiding behind a façade of order and dignity.

Post by Anonymous on

Damean slowly looked around as he puts up his hood again, his face was emotionless, as he searched the street, "Well a good idea first off would be to get a map of this place...It's changed since the last time I was here..."

He slowly opened up his cloak on his right side and Drogo was there, clinging to his armor, "Drogo, you wait outside of the city with the Horses... I don't know how the townsfolk would deal with Nightmare and Moonbeam."

The little imp climbed off of his Master and nodded in agreement, "Luck for Drogo that no one around anymore... at least for moment." He fly ontop of Nightmare and grabbed the reins, as he also did with Moonbeam, and quickly flew off with the two horses trotting behind.

Damean watched as they went out of the town, "At least they will be safe.... " he turned to Foail and Hakanku with a smirk, "Let's go to the Map shop, shall we?"

In a Sea of Shapes

Post by Ryalyn Kylana on

Slipping into the crowd beyond the door, Rya turned to head deeper into the city. A commotion in the distance back toward the way she came, however, caused hesitation. Turning her head this way and that she attempted to see what was the problem. With an odd sort of luck the crowd parted briefly enough for her to see that the others had also made it into the city. A pang of unknown feeling caused her to flinch and turn away. Instinctively she melded into the crowd, disappearing without a trace. She was not ready to face them just yet, especially if they were going to draw so much attention to themselves.

Her apprehension disappeared fleetingly as a thought struck her. Later … she thought in response, a sly smile creeping upon her face, hidden by the darkness of her hood. She knew they would not see her now. She was one in sea of drifting shapes. She turned a corner was gone before they could even surely know she was there.

Post by Anonymous on

Hakanku watched as Drogo appeared at Damean's side when he drew back his cloak, He slowly got off from the horse and watched as Drogo began to lead them away, he was more glad than ever that he had his feet on the ground and not mid-air suspended by a horses back. His thighs were painful and he realized that he had stretched them by only being on the horse for a little while, he knew this because he remembered back to when the nobles used to say it to their son's as they first learnt to ride.

Hakanku turned to Faoil and Damean, Damean spoke of a map shop, but he had no clue where anything was in this city, he had never been here before, although he saw many opportunities to pick-pocket from these oblivious citizens, his worry of large crowds totally disappeared as he thought of all the riches he could pilfer from these people.

"You will have to lead the way to a map shop, I have never been to this city before" his voice was no longer as cold as it used to would seem that he had warmed slightly to these people.

Post by Kari Thunderblade on

Faoil was sad to watch Drogo and the horses disappear, but she realised that they would not be safe in a town filled with those who feared anything out of the ordinary. At least the rest of them were somewhat humanoid in appearence, and could hide their magical blood. However, that did not do much to make her feel safer.

The girl looked up at Damean when he spoke. "Why do we have to be here, Damean?" she asked, whimpering a little. She didn't like cities. It was in high population areas that her wolf form could do the most harm, if it were to be unleashed. No matter how hard she tried to control her animal instincts, there was a part of her mind that veiwed humans, veiwed her friends, as nothing more then prey.

Faoil looked around, feeling as though the buildings and streets were closing in around her, shutterless windows and open doors resembling empty eye sockets and gaping mouths. Unknowingly, she reached over, instictively trying to take Damean's hand into her own.

Post by Anonymous on

Damean had looked to Faoil as she asked her question of why they were there, "Well to be honest... we will need to buy a few things... some medicine and herbs... food... and a map of the area."

He then looked to Hakanku and nodded, "It's been awhile since I've been in this town... so I'll just have to remember where one is..."

Before he began to walk, he felt Faoil's hand slip into his and it didn't bother him. He knew she was a little afraid, but he didn't mind it... this city could be a scary place for ones that were different.

He looked to both of them, "I think there's a Map shop just a few blocks North... we better get going and then leave this place."

Post by Anonymous on

Hakanku watched as Faoil tried to cup Damean's hand, he allowed her hand to slip through and they embraced their hands. Hakanku began looking all around, the pipe-thin streets were beginning to make him feel claustrophobic. He looked at Damean as he spoke, seemingly to him, he didn't care where they went, just as long as it wasnt as small as this street was. Hakanku heard Damean say the map shop was just north of where they were.

He shifted his weight on to his right foot, ready to leave for the map shop, he waited for Faoil and Damean to walk along also, his eagerness to leave obvious.

Post by Kari Thunderblade on

Faoil felt better as her hand met Damean's. Her hand was warm, and engulfed her own small one. The warmth brought with it a sense of comfort and security.

"Let's go then," she replied, more then ready to get out of the city. She had no idea supply stops were so stressful. At first, she had been excited to return to civilization, but now she wanted to do nothing more then run back to the woods, where she was safe among the branches and leaves. She supposed it was the wolf in her.

The girl tugged gently on Damean's hand, leaning in the direction he had indicated. She wanted to get moving.

Post by Ryalyn Kylana on

******* Damean ******
(damean apparently left me in charge of getting rid of his char so yeah. I'm hoping for the next post I'll be able to use his screen name)

Damean nodded following Faoil's tugging since it was in the direction he remembered the map shop to be. Looking over the heads in the crowd he was able to spot the swinging sign of the map-maker's shop just ahead. "There it is" he said to the others, nodding his head toward it. Pushing on through the crowd he reached the door. Slipping his hand from Faoil's and giving her an encouraging smile he reached out opened the door.

Inside, a bell jangled as Damean entered. He tool an interested look around noting his surroundings. Jonas the map-maker appeared instantly, his head poking through a rear door and his arms laiden with bits of rolled up maps and books. "Be with you in a moment!" he said cherrily as he dissappeared once again into the back. Damean nodded and turned to see if the others had followed him inside, speaking as he did so, "I suppose we should start looking around..."

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