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Ta'leus Shieldsong
12/May/2016, 08:03 PM
Dol Amroth and the Bay of White Ships

273

Nestled within the Bay of Belfalas, secure upon a high promontory of rock on a small peninsula is the city of Dol Amroth. High above the waves the citizens of this western city of Gondor go about their lives, wandering through the many levels and streets of their hometown. Founded by the Elves, remnants of their architecture can still be seen below in the bay and in various places throughout the city. This many layered and well weathered city of Men contains a wealth of areas for newcomers, adventurers, traders, and citizens of Gondor to explore. From the Old Town to Ost-En-Ernil, from the homes of the noble Houses to Gate Town, and from the Bay of the White Ships and the port city it contains, Dol Amroth welcomes all and provides a place for trade, comfort, learning, peace, and serenity for those who call it home.
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Areas of Dol Amroth

274

The entrance to the upper city, Gate Town is considered the “rowdier” and “rougher” area of the city if indeed any area could be called that. To the east it lies and most merchants from Minas Tirith and the eastern cities and provinces enter through here. Dozens of small markets are tucked away haphazardly within its long and narrow streets, with many taverns, guesthouses, and skilled laborers operating alongside them. Visitors will encounter little crime besides the occasional drunken brawl in a pub, or the bold yet misguided pickpocket that always seems to find a home in a large city.

(The Lond Ernil Roundhouse, The Lighthouse Inn, The Jolly Juggler, Sign of the Sloop & Swordfish, The House of Many Splendors, Stonegate Tower)
*Further description of Gate Town and locations therein can be found HERE (http://lotrplaza.com/showthread.php?20269-Gate-Town-(free-rp-area))*

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One of the oldest (hence its name) parts of the city, it sits behind Gate Town and above the ports below. Here is where the bulk of most major trade within the city walls is done, and where the Mayor resides and works. The bulk of Dol Amroth’s well-to-do citizenry live within the walls of Old Town, comprising of high ranking military officers, wealthy merchants, city officials, etc.

(Archam’s School, Amarthion’s House, Squire’s Hall, The Black Spar, Sign of the Blind Voyager)

276

Beneath Ost-En-Ernil yet still above the rest of the city are the Cliffs, a winding and steeply hilled area where most of Dol Amroth’s noble Houses call home. Many taverns and gaming halls may be found here, primarily towards the castle where many of the city’s garrison frequent them.

(Adab-erin-Amon (the House on the Hill), House of Tables, The Broken Prow, The White Shoals)
*Further descriptions of the Cliffs and Old Town and locations therein can be found HERE (http://lotrplaza.com/showthread.php?22295-The-Cliffs-amp-Old-Town-(free-rp-area))*


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Far below the other buildings of Dol Amroth, resting on the beaches and upon docks and carven stone is the Bay of the White Ships. Containing within it both the Middle Port and New Port, and the small and somewhat independent city of White Town, daily life here seems busier and louder than that of the citizens on the cliffs above them, due to the boisterous nature of seafaring traders and sailors.
*Further descriptions of the Bay and locations therein can be found HERE (http://lotrplaza.com/showthread.php?20265-Bay-of-the-White-Ships-(free-rp-area))*

White Town
The First Hall (Guilds), The Halls of the White Fleet, The Inn of the Blue Heron, The Melon Inn

Middle Port
The Fisherman’s Market, The Second Hall (Guilds), The Sea-Drake

New Port
The House of Fair Trade, The Dol Amroth Auction House, The Seashell, The Merchant’s Hall & Exchange, The House of Westernesse, The Sign of the Seasick Sailor.
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Thread Guidelines
In-Character posts only please
Posts over 300 characters
Post in black (SK blue and Teal reserved for GM notices)
GM's: Morwen Daegomir & Ta'leus Shieldsong

Ercassie
12/Feb/2017, 11:55 PM
** There is still no Southern Fiefdoms thread, so I hope it is well to post this in the main City of Dol Amroth thread. This post is however set in Lond CŰl, Belfalas (part of the Dor-En-Ernil). :cheeky:


http://imageshack.com/a/img922/263/rnWgmh.jpghttp://imageshack.com/a/img924/5821/uNuHQo.jpg
http://imageshack.com/a/img924/4350/Ferv1I.jpg

Lord Edhelmir AzrubÍl with his new wife Lady SŪrdes
to be met by Lady Eressild AzrubÍl

At Castle AzrubÍl, Lond CŰl
Belfalas

Mist coiled in tendrils around the slow setting sun, as a titan octopus, dragging down the day to darkness. Set against this stain of growing shadow sat the Castle AzrubÍl, rising on her roots to smoulder, a vast opalescent hearth of stone. In that single hour where the daystar was dwindling, and the night’s pearl not yet seated as successor, that was truly when the palatial abode threw challenge to all resplendent rivals. Lit by countless torches, adorned by the flutter of rich pennants; the lordly structure was an epitome of affluence.

That it bore the title though of ‘Castle’ was perhaps most telling of that fine nest of nobles who had long reigned there in flagrant glory. Majesty was not within their blood despite all the symptoms of assumed entitlement. Legend spoke of an unabashed ancestor of the AzrubÍl, who had claimed his intent was to draw the enemies of fine Dol Amroth to direct their assaults upon his alluring lair, as a means of purposely dividing any attack that was designed against the true Princes of that land. Sea-bound Enemies though should have given eye to this stretch of Belfalas however, had it been even a humble hut, rearing it’s rafters upon the wind-scorned shore. For it’s purpose, beneath all the pomp and conceit, was one of a pair of sentinels, guarding an estuary which sat vulnerable else to barrage from the mighty sea.

Lond CŰl was the name assumed by that paradise, protected by two diligent and noble households. Named as much for the fair golden sands of a coveted beach, as for the famous fortune of the AzrubÍl themselves. Rumours beat their reputation of a past in blockade running, as notorious as any upon seizing an advantage to their coffers even during times of woe. The more recent story was that the late Araldur AzrubÍl had at least doubled the worth of his inheritance, largely through the means of gaming and as much success in recreational jousting as upon the field of war. However they had come about their capital, it could not be said they were not generous. The fishermen, and sailors, and small farmers who lived underneath the canopy of protection from the House of AzrubÍl were all granted as much comfort and security as their benefactors could raise. In return, the men and women of Lond CŰl gave their service and their lives, willing, as men-at-arms and shipsmen, to provide their lord assembly when he rode in service to the Prince at Dol Amroth.


That was the intimidating legacy that Lord Edhelmir AzrubÍl struggled with, each hour that his conscious mind strove to maintain the prize he had been born to. Lacking the charisma and bravado of his elder (late) brother, he had persevered with the sense and business that saw him closeted away from public eye. It was very much Edhelmir’s policy to allow those whom he stood responsible for to go about their responsibilities without any interference from himself. Whereas Araldur had made himself accessible to all in Lond CŰl, visiting, commending and applauding those who toiled in their chores, Edhelmir preferred to not ‘lord’ over any. So the gaiety and splendour which had been commonplace in the days before had slowly succombed to a sombre state of affairs. The street parties had come to memory alone, and it seemed that Lond CŰl was in sure decline from days of it’s glorious past. Araldur’s sole child was a daughter, given to flighty obsession, the latest of these engaged in travel and pursuit of war. So it was that the matter of her uncle, the current Lord’s batchelorhood had seen the Women of that little colony shake their heads in despair, and Men scratch at their chins upon the future of them all. For if the House of AzrubÍl should fall all too soon heirless, then it should be privy to the claim of that sentinel on the far bank. All might alter upon the winds of great change. And the House of Dimaethor had been regarded with some distaste since the days of Kinstrife. For all the brazen swagger of the House of AzrubÍl, it was better known, and far more dearly trusted than the strangers who camped across the river.

For this cause if no other, the carriage that came gliding as a swan upon the river of white road, should have been heralded as an omen of fair climes. For the Lord had taken (finally) a bride, and together they had ensured the security of all beloved by both. Still Edhelmir sat delicate in his seat, feeling still a cuckoo in the nest of some more polished hypothetical opponent to his title. SŪrdes leant forth in her seat, and shared the view framed by the sure, gilded window. She slid her hand into that upon her new husband's lap, supportive, and the carriage poured back into focus. The reluctant nobleman retreated against the velveteen rest, and trembled noticeably. His wife squeezed the fear out of his fingers with her touch. Edhelmir leant back, and allowed his thoughtful grey eyes a short moment’s peace beyond the curtain of their lids.

“As facing truth approaches with the same haste as sweet home, you know the sting now of regret, for recently impulsive actions,” his spouse assumed, swallowing with difficulty. She did not withdraw her fingers however, for she would have the man to know comfort even if the subject of his upset caused her shame.

“I am but alien to the seizing of my wants,” the Lord turned gaze upon her with gentle, imploring sentiment. “It would speak of my cowardice alone to mention how long I have craved to take you to my side. Yet so it has been, my dear, dear SŪrdes. My fear is that you will all too soon be encumbered by regretful notions of your own.”

“Long indeed have we been since first introduced,” his bride admitted, tentative in her delivery. “In that time I have harboured long thoughts upon the manner of man that you be. And what you name cowardice, I would award caution and consideration. For my loss of previous husband, much missed, you have demonstrated great strength of patience, and respect. In so long as your decision to take up at last what long was yours for the seizing, was indeed bourne of your own true want. And not of mere duty to what you imagine might be wise.”


Words were stole of Edhelmir at the moment they would have been most welcome. And the heart of SŪrdes trembled as her husband tightened hold upon her hand. The scene framed by gilded carriage window could no longer be described as captivating backdrop but rather, a high-browed lady, daubed in such a gown and jewels that she might be herself a hardy diamond. Arresting was the gaze that she razed over the arrivals, white gloved hands severely interlaced before her, in some torrent of emotion that rippled beneath the surface of her porcelain countenance. The Lady Eressild, flanked by a small wave of staff stood nonetheless removed from their perfect matching ensemble of sure cerulean blue, tasselled by gold. The widow of Araldur was regal in aquamarine, a silver diadem with a deep set sapphire winked as a third eye, all-knowing. She smiled, as her brother-in-law and her best friend saw themselves to the waiting ground.

“You were wed,” Eressild marvelled. “By a Sea Captain, upon a most exclusive oceanic cruise.” The couple stole a shy smile that removed all doubts that the long ride had nurtured. “My Lord Edhelmir, might be there is some of that adventurous AzrubÍl blood coursing through your veins after all !”

“My dear Lady Eressild, we have come a long way and would .. within ..?” the Lord of the Castle made subtle suggestion that his sister-by-law almost baulked to behold.

“It is not as though we speak of secrets !” Eressild admonished him, and hugged SŪrdes as the sister she considered her old friend to be. As she as good as was now. As she long should have been .. “I have seen it to be known,” the admission was confident and glad. “A feast is to be held in your honour on the morrow. I have invited …”

“Feast ?” Edhelmir visibly paled, and saw their departing carriage round off toward the stables, with a sense of sad longing to be back within it’s sanctuary.

“Who ..” SŪrdes fluttered over the word and had to recover herself. “You said you have invited ?” she forced out the words, as though each saw injury to her thin lips in doing so. She had not yet written her son of her re-marriage !

“Why everyone is invited !” Eressild beheld both the pair as though they children and she the clucking mother. “Whatever shall I do with the two of you ?! Did you think this would not be revealed ? Come ! Come inside, and we shall speak. Of a great many things !”

The fastidious lady turned on her heels and advanced into the house, her show of diligent domestic troops hastening at her move. Edhelmir took a deep breath and found the soft hand of SŪrdes again in his. Eressild’s sure tones of exclaim and announcement echoed back down the length of the great passage they chased in her wake. Together. They would face all that should come of their bold move now together.

Not all courage is forged on the battlefield after all. All who meet their greatest terror, whatsoever it may be, should be perceived as valiant in the eyes of the world.

Lantaelen
16/Feb/2017, 09:54 PM
Dimaethor Estate
Belfalas, on the coasts north of Dol Amroth

Discussing the invitation of House AzrubÍl


Across the sparkling water from Castle AzrubÍl rose the daunting sight of the stone manor of House Dimaethor.

Many storied it was, the tallest structure upon that side of the water, glancing down with a sombre, venerable look upon the myriad collection of timber halls, stone hovels, and lesser villas and manors. Like many proud houses of Dor-En-Ernil and Gondor as a whole, Dimaethor claimed its roots and foundations to the mythical Second Age of the world, where explorers out of Nķmenor that is now lost had come upon this ideal patch of land and there built a settlement. This settlement, through immigration and later political refugee seekers, had grown for a time into a flourishing town and agricultural basin, the ground fertile and lush from the various run off streams and rivers that came down from the White Mountains of the north or the hills of Dol Amroth to the east.

Once it had been great and flourishing, with many thousands dwelling at ease and in prosperity there. It served as the market town and center of trade for incoming and outgoing traffic through the Golden Harbour. From the north came iron ores, tin, precious metals, silks and capital. From the west came exquisite furs, wool, cotton, and rich timber for the shipyards upon the Anduin. From the east, dried fruits, ginger, olive oils and aromatics. And from the south that is now cut off came myrrh, frankincense, balsam, saffron, pepper and ivory. Every commodity under the waking sun and sinking moon could have been found there and the Lords of Dimaethor were counted among the richest and prestigious Houses in all of Gondor, their fame stretching upon the north and southern coasts of the Belfalas.

But that was merely a glorious memory of the past.

The period of time, known now as the Treason of Dimaethor, had all but bankrupted the family. Its proud legacy, of boasting direct descent from the original founders from Nķmenor through father to son, was broken in the Kin-Strife of the seventeenth century and with them went much of its vigor and power. Traitors blood and corrupted they were now deemed, having grown decadent in their wealth and arrogance. To the aid of Castamir the Usurper they had sent much, wealth and levies, but neither returned, either as bounty or in payment. All that came was a decree of punishment, the reduction of their fiefs, the fining of their wealth, the loss of title and rank. Little by little, over the course of a millennia, the passage of power and riches was reversed. Trade went elsewhere as tariffs were risen to pay off the extortionist fine and penalty for their disloyalty. Respect all but dissipated, replaced with mistrust and jeering. Even the very land seemed to turn against them, as streams dried up or were diverted in the growing age of the world. The land became less fertile and families removed elsewhere, forgoing fealty for bounty.

Dimaethor lost everything and all that remained were a few decrypt ruins, relics of their past, which now seemed unobtainable, but never forgotten. The current ruling family, descended through lesser linages, did all they could to survive and strive on. Family jewels and heirlooms were sold. For the first time since their founding, the Lords and Ladies of Dimaethor were reduced to taking up a trade to further supplant their meagre incomes, dwindling more by each passing year. Less commoners were there to work the land, so the Dimaethor folk took up the burden. Their name and home were only considered daunting, for they were a family known to be calculating and ruthless in determination to regain what they had lost. None except they probably recalled that the name Lond CŰl, Golden Harbour, came not from the recent wealth of AzrubÍl but their own ancient prosperity. And it was deep source of bitterness, to see this legacy usurped by those across the water.

Many might further think it a fair punishment for their treason, even if it be far back in the annals of history. Many generations worth of reputation was crushed by a single Lordís decision, in the space of a decade, to support the wrong sovereign.

Only one aspect of Dimaethor remained consistent through the failing of the Line of Kings and the rise of the House of Stewards, for which they were allowed to continue as minor nobles rather than disgraced as dispossessed traitors. To the service of the Prince of Dol Amroth, to whom they ever claimed fealty to, they always sent the required levies and tribute of coin and harvest, placing such a necessity above their own comfort and well-being even. Its warriors were strong and hardened by their destitute backgrounds. No generation had there been since the days of the Usurper where there had not been a Swan Knight risen from its midst. And in accordance with the ancient feudal contract long ago signed, they kept in trust with their league-fellows across the water the maintenance and upkeep of the river fortress.

It was even more monumental than either familial holding, Dimaethor or AzrubÍl, for it was built in the height of Gondorís power and thus was the first structure dedicated to war risen in that patch of land. A curtain wall Dimaethor once boasted about its market town, but that had long fallen into disrepair, through lack of use and disassembly of its length as building material elsewhere. But this river fortress remained, of indomitable stone quarried far in the north and carried here through ingenious means that were now forgotten, funded by the Kings of Gondor and the Princes of Dol Amroth. Four great towers it had, set in pairs on either side of the river, both before the fortress itself and behind. Boom-towers they were called, for between each could be raised a great chain, to both block and impede the passage of ships up or down the river if need be, for they lived among the coasts and were often subject to raids by foes to the south, rivals of Gondor in the city of Umbar.

Within the hexagon walls, broken only by the passage of the river, lay not one but two keeps, tall and proud, with many banners and bastions of strength, one upon either shore, meant for garrisoning by Dimaethor and AzrubÍl warriors. But this was not the chief refugee and hold of this region. When foes were sighted, only the men came hither, the women and children fleeing far inland to escape the power of sea raiders and pirates. Nor was it meant as a place of last stand, for the boom-towers were not connected to either keep by wall or safe tunnel and were meant to be held, but not to the death. It required any attacker to disembark and storm the towers, with hopes of losing much in the process, but the objective was to delay, not defeat. If the boom-towers were taken, the garrison could hold off long within either keep, protected within through compartmentalized passages and chambers, narrow and hidden with traps and murder-holes.

There were occasions where Corsairs did capture the boom-towers and times when they were repelled successfully by the might of the Two Houses, but never had either keep fallen to enemy occupation, though they be sieged a long time. Not while the Two Houses could provide aid and support to one another, even if they be cut off by land and sea from one another, they were still in sight and shot of each other. But in these days of growing mistrust and ambition, none knew how long that cooperation might survive should they be sieged yet again by the sea-power of their foes.

Or bankrupted by another wedding.

Lord Z‚inabÍn Dimaethor watched from a high window as a carriage glided up the distant road towards the so-called castle of the AzrubÍl family. Only a keen-sighted individual could glimpse the comings and goings within the distant clutter of structures across the water and even in his late age, he saw much and more than any lesser man might. He stood there as resolute and impassive as a statue in the halls of the Stewards, hands folded behind his back, dressed in flowing robes of blue and white silk. His grey eyes saw everything but his mind saw more, both real and perceived. Behind him was a lounge, where his aging wife Orelnith sat tucked in the corner of a chaise, dressed in a golden beige gown. Upon the table set between the furniture was a single scroll, beautifully scripted with golden ink and unopened.

It didn't need to be opened. Both already guessed what its contents might be.

"Stare until your eyes bleed Lord, if you will." Orelnith remarked after a prolonged silence, examining the back of her palms resting in her lap, worn and aged with labor, "but it will not make the reading of their minds any easier for you." Or the degradation of them further, as you often desire.

Z‚inabÍn did not budge, merely wrinkling his nose and shifting his jaw with unspoken words and phrases. His mind read what it might, according to his knowledge and experiences, and he saw only complacency and conspiracy across the water. The brother of Araldur the Mighty finally was to be wed! And to a simple daughter of a Baron too, it seemed. Far beneath his station. And his own. Yet they were requested to attend this union of high noble and low? Again the hopes of Dimaethor were defeated, as something as seemingly honorable as a craven man finding the courage to bond himself to another had blocked yet another avenue of wealth and glory. For if the fortunes of AzrubÍl continued as they had been going, they would have ended without an heir and successor to their legacy. And that legacy would revert to the nearest kin, the Dimaethors, courtesy of a shared relative not long ago in their conjoined past.

He might have growled in his throat like a snarling wolf. It seems Dimaethor must wait a little longer, another lifetime, an entire age of this world, before they could be returned to their rightful place, all prolonged by the mere seduction of a docile Lord by a woman scarcely above the middle rank. Now, they would have to cross over the river and endure speech and festivity with this union of differing rank and status, to smile and make small talk while the fortunes of his House were danced upon by the bliss of another. The resentment was all too consuming within his chest and mind that he even considered giving some excuse of poor health to simply not attend this day.

Orelnith seemed to read his mind however, as she seemed quite capable of doing so when the need struck her. Never in service to Dimaethor either, as she only used this power against him or her children. "You need not attend, citing poor health or labours still of yet incomplete. And ZŰrzimril and her husband are still days away, as is your son. Let us present ourselves as a family and united in appearance."

"Nonsense." Z‚inabÍn replied almost immediately, shaking his head. Several times he mumbled the word. Nonsense. Totally, pure nonsense. "We shall attend this evening, as we are bidden. To not go shall be taken as weakness and tasteless. We shall attend, you, I and Azr‚indil, and smile at the fortune of our...fellows." He said, disdaining the use of the final word. He shook his head and turned from the window, striding over to the high lounge within the chamber of the Lord and Lady. He stood behind a couch, staring down at the still unopened invitation, as if it were anathema to his touch.

"And a wedding gift? Our finances are still in a state of disarray from the wedding of our eldest not four years prior." Orelnith questioned, changing tact along with her husband's mood. So they were going. That was well and good. But now there was even more pressure not to appear weak and austere in giving.

"Something of meretricious value, naturally. The bride is of low quality herself. How shall they ever tell the difference?" He sneered in turn.

"I have several unused bolts of silk left over, enough to make a few dresses. Perhaps she might appreciate that." Orelnith suggested in a genuine tone, as most women of their age tended to know seamstressing and the art of crafting a dress from scratch might be a welcome hobby. She followed her husband and his family, but did not feel committed to this perceived feud with the neighbors across the river.

ďFor the bride.Ē Z‚inabÍn agreed, somewhat disdainfully. He neither approved of SŪrdes or Lord Edhelmir, who contrasted quite poorly the memory of his brother Araldur, whom he had respected as a warrior, to the point it allayed his resentment and ambitions for his neighbors. It was difficult to think ill of one when you served as comrades under arms, against foes and forces beyond their familial histories. His daughter too was turning out to be quite remarkable, though she carried that same infantile infection of consorting with the lower classes. Though the Dimaethors did as well, they only conducted themselves as enlightened albeit despotic leaders. Not friends.

ďDonít.Ē Orelnith suddenly seemed to plead in a whisper.

ďA horse, for Lord Edhelmir.Ē He declared flatly, turning to stride back to the window and gaze out across the glittering ribbon upon the land that was the river, where the dwellings of AzrubÍl stood on the other side. ďA proud horse. A beast of war, one men will marvel at, but like him it shall needÖtempering.Ē His voice was cold and his expression unsmiling, despite how generous his gift. And perhaps it may throw Edhelmir from its back, rendering him more impotent. There was a Rohirric merchant out of Aldburg recently in town. He would have a wonderful stock and the high price might redeem itself many fold. On the more likely hand, if Edhelmir lived up to his familyís reputation, he would master the beast and earn himself a great servant and friend at Dimaethor expense. Either brought glory to Z‚inabÍn's House, yet it was cruel to hope for a unfortunate accident all the same.

ďWe shall attend by midday to give our felicitations. Prepare our people.Ē Z‚inabÍn decreed and with that, the household of Dimaethor began to bustle like a disturbed ant hill, coming alive with vigour and speed. For as neighbors, they would not simply arrive with personal gifts and words of praise and flattery. With them shall go their own household staff and carts of supplies, to assist in the burden of preparing for a wedding. It would also be a silent challenge, for the wedding of the eldest daughter of Dimaethor had been an extravagant affair to which many were invited and no less was expected of their neighbors, many of whom were invited and feasted at Dimaethor expense.

The preparation was left to Lady Dimaethor. In the hour after receiving the invitation, Lord Dimaethor acquired himself a mighty steed, of a flaxen hue with a rich mane and strong coat. The beast was young, a yearling, an eager and energetic colt and still undisciplined in heeding command or patience. Z‚inabÍn was even warned that some practice and breaking was required, if it was not to be used in fields of war and battle. But he paid it little mind, first whispering words of a fair speech in its ears, which seemed to quiet the beast. Aye, he issued it a promise, to but wait and delay its passion a short time, before it could indulge its innermost desire, with one worthy of it. In the hands of his servants and stableboys, it was brought back to the manor and draped with a rich blue cloth. Thus would it be presented to Lord Edhelmir.

Soon the short convoy was ready, flanked by household men in proud livery and uniformed servants, upon carts or on either side of the single carriage. But as Lord and Lady Dimaethor emerged, there was quickly consternation, for young Lady Azr‚indil was still amiss and nowhere to be found.

Rivvy Elf
04/Aug/2017, 06:34 AM
Dol Amroth
'The Mighty Handful'
Bay of the White Ships


The Middle Port & The Working Harbor
ALERT: Raiding the Harbor in Dol Amroth


Gulls circling the harbor overhead in the Bay of White Ships squawk with each other, as some land on the wooden posts of various docks. Rolling waves of the sea softly land on sand, and the wind whistles through the air. All is covered by mist, revealed through the fires of the lighthouse. Outside of the heavy mist, it typical night inDol Amroth, as the obscured stars twinkled in the sky and the moon slowly passed overhead. Boxes of live crabs, clams, crawfish, are left outside near the entrance of the docks, forgotten by lax seamen. Attached to the docks by ropes, heavy anchors, and large rocks are multiple White Ships, their hulls massive, and their tall masts furled. But the flags for the White Tree and Stars of Gondor can be seen on the uppermost masts, waving in the wind.

Close to the shore fish leap in the air. Nearby, gulls look on hungrily, some taking flight and try to catch the jumping fish. Sometimes dolphins can also be seen, clicking their mouths rapidly as their glistening fins and tail shine in the moonlight. The gulls certainly dare not eat that. One dolphin in particular was enjoying himself, leaping to and fro, white foam splashing about as each entry and exit into the ocean produced a small splash. He would rotate his body occasionally, his body spinning in the air, casting drops of water everywhere in the distance. He leaped to the air again, attempting a mid-air flip that would have him dive back into the water snout-first. Clicking his happily, the dolphin voiced pleasure and had fun along the surface of the bay.

So caught up in his fun that he did not hear the twang and whistle of a black feathered arrow. It pierced through his midsection, and the dolphin screamed in pain, falling to the water in a large splash.

"Do that again, and you blow our cover, idiot!" Balorckheerof hissed at Rorcky Orcskhakhorc, as the latter muttered hasty apologies and half-excuses in response.

Out from the mist came a boat blacker than burnt ash. The paddles roughly stabbed and slashed through the water repeatedly as the boat moved closer to the harbor's docks. They had hopped aboard a corsair, and the Umbarian Heavy Galleon Corsair further back, but within firing range of the two Gondorian White Ships resting in the harbor.

"Remember the plan," Balorckheerof hissed to the rest of the four orcs. At his back was a wooden shield, freshly carved out of the Ithilien wood they raided, "cut the ropes, demolish the masts, and attach the torches to the ships. Then those pirates can ballista-bolt their grappling hooks through the ships, and steal them."

"Understood," responded Cui.

Meanwhile Mooseorcski's stomach growled. "I'm starvin'," he complained, "I had nothin' to eat but maggoty bread for 10 stinkin' days!"

"Then you grab something to eat on the wharf!" Balorckheerof hissed in annoyance, "Borckdin. You have the most important role of all."

Borckdin sat as straight as he could, even as he rowed the boat by himself.

Balorckheerof looked him square in the eye and said, "you must guard the boat."

The young orc spat in the water in annoyance, as he continued rowing towards the docks.

Soon the boat approached the docks, and 4 out of the 5 orcs leaped out of the boat onto the wood of the docks.

Balorckheerof cracked his knuckles, "let us have some fun boys," he said.

The raid had begun. Nobody knew how it would end.


Who will foil and stop these 5 fiends from wreaking havoc in the port? What of the fate of the dolphin? Is the lighthouse person paying any attention at all? Will anyone stop them and save the night from the shadow?

Note: If nobody tries to stop The Mighty Handful within 1 week, their raid is a complete success and all 5 shall return with 2 Gondorian White Ships, and whatever loot, pillage, and destruction 'trophies' they earn in the port.

Ta'leus Shieldsong
10/Aug/2017, 07:41 AM
Astar Farthoni
Lieutenant of the Guard
Defending the Bay - Part One

Dol Amroth had been in relative peace for nearly a year. The Corsairs of Umbar had not raided in all that time and hadn't even been seen within twenty leagues of the city. The Guards of the Bay of White Ships had slept soundly for many a month. Whereas the Guards of the city itself were often busy with thieves and the various criminals that frequented pubs and back alleys, the docks seemed to remain free of that filth. They occasionally caught a smuggler bringing in illicit goods, but with the regular checks of every ship entering and exiting the Bay, most smugglers chose to enter through the city gates where the checks were less invasive. And thus, Astar had little to occupy other than his usual patrols and his time spent in the pub.

This night was a pleasant one. Mist rolled in from the sea and the stars shone brightly above. To his back was the lighthouse, stretching out from a great outcropping of rock, a silent and watchful guardian of the Bay. The lamps appeared dimmer than usual, but that was likely because the new watchmen had started that night. Two young folks, a man of twenty two and a lad of seventeen had been recruited some time in the last week and tonight was to be their first unsupervised shift without the lighthouse master. He would have to make his way up there at some point and chastise them, but as no ships were expected that evening perhaps the mistake could be forgiven.

Alone on the docks, he walked silently among the great ships. Tall, proud, and gleaming white under the moonlight, he admired them without cease. Though he had been a Guardsmen for a decade, and spent the last seven years in the Bay, he never grew tired of seeing the ships themselves. The sailors and fishermen and people of the Bay he could take or leave, but the ships were to be wondered at regardless of their size, as even the smallest was a splendorous thing.

He turned a corner, making his way (albeit in a roundabout fashion) to the end of the docks. On the edge of his vision a dark blot appeared along the horizon, inching closer and closer. "Strange," he said aloud, "I could have sworn no ship was arriving tonight. I wonder why the lighthouse hasn't signaled me yet?" He stepped forward and began to walk towards the dock's edge, which was still a few hundred feet away. The blot had grown larger with each step he took, and now he saw what looked like a small rowboat with about half a dozen shapes in it. An uneasy feeling grew in his stomach, though there was no reason for it. Perhaps it was the chill of the night air, or perhaps merely human intuitiveness, but the boat made him feel nervous.

He stopped and squatted low, crouching behind a stack of crates left by some lazy sailor, and squinted his eyes hard. The small boat reached the dock's edge and a rope was thrown around the nearest post. Four men exited the ship in great leaps and landed on the dock, brandishing weapons and stooping low. Corsairs! He thought at first, but as the figures moved forward a horrible realization crept through his mind and set his stomach ablaze. ORCS! His mind roared. Without blinking he turned and bolted from the spot where he had crouched. A feeling of terror was set upon him and as he ran he barely found the energy to raise the alarm, though raise it he did.

"Awake! Awake Guards of the Bay! We are being RAIDED!"

Rivvy Elf
10/Aug/2017, 08:08 AM
Dol Amroth
'The Mighty Handful'
Bay of the White Ships

The Middle Port & The Working Harbor
ALERT: Raiding the Harbor in Dol Amroth Part 2




"Awake! Awake Guards of the Bay! We are being RAIDED!"

"We're spotted!" Balorckheerof shouted, as he heard the alarm being raised, "shoot him, shoot him now!"

Rorcky Orcskhakhorc raised his bow, fumbling an arrow out of his quiver and onto the string,

"Gonna shoot your leg
Gonna shoot your knee
Gonna shoot you up
I'll stick ya in a tree!"

Thus the orc muttered that quick tune, as he twanged an arrow towards Astar after the last verse.

At the same time, Mooseorcksi roared, his maw opening up revealing grey teeth from the raw crab he was munching on. He then began charging towards Astar, issuing out a battle cry, his curved scimitar making whoosh whoosh whoosh noises through the air as he continually swung it over his head in a circle.

"I'M HUNGRY! FRESH MEAT! YOU WILL DIE!" he shouted, his eyes seeing red in a berzerked frenzy.

Cui and Balorckheerof, in the meantime, quickly lit torches, as they began running to the White Ships in order to signal the hidden corsair in the fog to launch the capturing harpoons.

Meanwhile, Borckdin, now very panicked, began rowing the boat away from the docks, back to the presumed safety of the corsair.... Unfortunately for him, as his back was towards the sea and his attention completely on the beachhead. He did not hear the underwater echlocation sounds, as soon a pod of 12 dolphins began swimming as fast as they could to the aid of the wounded dolphin. Their path was directly in Borckdin's way...

Note: If nobody stops The Mighty Handful within 1 week, their raid is a mostly a success and all 5 shall return with 2 Gondorian White Ships.

Ta'leus Shieldsong
10/Aug/2017, 08:44 AM
Astar Farthoni
Lieutenant of the Guard
Defending the Bay - Part Two

Astar ​doubted he had ever run faster or yelled harder than he did that night. Down the docks he sped, shouting at the top of his lungs, his arms pumping back and forth. A few hundred feet down the dock, near the to barracks of the Guards, he stumbled on a plank that was loose. He began to curse aloud but had no chance to bellow obscenities as an arrow sped just over his shoulder and landed itself squarely in the chest of a Guard exiting the barracks. The other Guard, Dorner, it seemed, crumpled into a pile not five feet from the doorway. Behind him came a group of Guards in various stages of dressing. Some had donned most of their armor quickly, but most had only some mail and their helmets and swords.

He chanced a look back and saw the Orcs running towards him, lighting torches and waving them about. What their purpose was he could not discern, but it seemed as if they were signaling others. Regardless of their intentions, the foul creatures had set foot in the Bay, the very Bay he was sworn to protect. He pushed himself up, turning and drawing his sword to face the Orcs, his fellow Guardsmen behind him.

"To me!" He yelled. "You there, Havonil, go and awaken the city Guards! NOW!!" Behind him were seven others, all awakening and beginning to grasp the situation. They stood ready to defend their city, waiting for more to come.

Rivvy Elf
10/Aug/2017, 09:36 AM
Dol Amroth
'The Mighty Handful'
Bay of the White Ships

The Middle Port & The Working Harbor
ALERT: Raiding the Harbor in Dol Amroth Part 3





"Got him!" Rorcky Orcskhakhorc shouted triumphantly, with a smirk. Only for it to be replaced with a frown. Though somebody else took an arrow in the chest, his target dodged it. Curse his reflexes. He muttered choice curse words, as he hid behind a crate full of pincer-bound lobsters for cover.

"Stop running you coward! Fight! FIGHT ME!" yelled Mooseorcksi as he chased Astar, who was faster still. Soon, the orc caught up, but stopped feet before the Lieutenant and the group of 7 soldiers beginning to wake up. The orc berzerker laughed.

"Eight against one? Where is your honor, Gondorian scum!" Mooseorcksi mocked, as he spat, aiming his spit to Astar's face, "Come at me all at once then! Unless you're all afraid!"

"Take cover
smother their mothers
eat their brothers
take their sisters,"

muttered Rorcky Orcskhakhorc as he notched the arrow, slowly aiming his orc in between two barrels of lobsters at Astar's group. As soon as one, or all made their move against Mooseorcksi, Rorcky readied his aim, and would fire accordingly.

Meanwhile, through all that standoff, Cui and Balorckheerof made it to their respective target boats. Both began cutting the ropes that were attached to the docks and other heavy objects along the beac. Thne, if they were done removing the ropes, they would attach the torch to the front of the ship, which was the signal for the Corsairs of Umbar to fire their harpoons to capture the pair of White Ships.

Borckdin, however, continued retreating from the shore. Even as a pod of Dolphins appear on the horizon, getting closer and closer (as well as bigger).

Note: If nobody stops The Mighty Handful within 1 week, their raid is a mostly a success and all 5 shall return with 2 Gondorian White Ships.

Rivvy Elf
18/Aug/2017, 10:33 AM
Dol Amroth
Bay of the White Ships

The Middle Port & The Working Harbor
Ship Raid: Successful with Casualties







The night's normal quiet is filled with the roars of fires, the rush of footsteps, and curses that fill the air. By the grace of The One, you somehow survived the raid on the Middle Port. The bodies of soldiers you toasted a drink with merely an hour ago lay on the ground lifeless, unmoving as their eyes are closed.

Meanwhile, two dead orcs are heaped together, being consumed by the crackling of flames as the putrid smell of roast flesh wafts to your nose. One of them (Borckdin) took longer to burn as that orc drowned and surfaced on the coast.

You wonder to yourself how exactly just five orcs managed to steal not only one, but two White Ships. While you and seven other soldiers were fighting one orc (Mooseorcski), another orc sniped from afar. By the time you stuck your sword straight through the berzerker's mouth, four of your own had fallen. Two stuck slain by arrows in the throat, and the other two killed by the berzerker (Mooseorcski). Then many crashing, piercing sounds were heard, as you later assume ballista bolts smashing through the ships. By the time the Gondorians towards the edge of the docks, the archer had fled, probably now on one of the White Ships. The group almost reaches in time, but it was too late. You see the white ships disappear in the mist. Presumably there was a chase; but the fog was too heavy, and the ships were lost.

But you were not part of that pursuit group.

Memories enter, as you close the eyes, still full of horror and despair, of one fallen Gondorian. A stab meant for you, but he moved in front and took all of it. The orc's scimitar stuck in your best friend, and you seize the opportunity the relieve enemy's head, which plops off and bounces on the ground like a lead ball.

Immediately afterwards, you try desperately to stem the blood pouring from your best friend's body, as a puddle of red forms underneath. The blade is wedged within his chest. He cries in agony when you pull on it. You remember stories of dying soldiers, as they mustered enough courage to overcome their pain as they said their goodbyes to friends and family, their regrets on not marrying their childhood friend next door, and other last words. Dried wet stains still remain on those books.

But you hear no prolonged regret, no tearful goodbye. All you hear are screams of pain, as you desperately assure him that everything will be fine, even as he writhes around, his body shaking uncontrollably. He looks at you, opens his mouth to either scream say goodbye. Then suddenly his body stops, a cough or rattle issues from his throat, and there is naught but silence.

He is dead, and you are alive. Tears fall from your eyes.

It was supposed to be his honeymoon.

Ercassie
20/Oct/2017, 11:15 AM
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Of the Lord Araldur AzrubÍl and Captain Gaearindil Thavron
Lond CŰl, Belfalas
Many Years ago

The elation was infectious and none could rightly suppose quite where it started, save for with a single name. That same name which ever conjured butterflies and bravado in the people of Lond CŰl. Araldur AzrubÍl. News whistled through the land like a fair change of wind, raining down good spirits and the dawn of laughter upon all who heard. That the Lord Isilmar’s first son and heir was throwing a birthday party, for himself (of course), and for all to attend. From the celebrated senior Swan Knight Isilmar himself, who would be wheeled out specially for the occasion, to the smallest child mending nets upon the dock. The day was declared an unofficial holiday for all, save that most would be put to more work than usual in readiment. Still, in pursuit of their efforts being recognised, by the Great lords and ladies of the estate, folk were giddy with determination to perform their utmost best. The finest dishes that might be reared from the ocean’s harvest and the fairest melodies that instruments could weave. Nothing was too good for all knew that it would be a day always remembered.

The festivities were due to centre around a most recent prize, a captured corsair ship. After streets worth of stalls, parades, and a popular raft building race, the grand conclusion would be the sinking of the captive vessel. Araldur had seized it personally, putting all of the pirate crew to the sword (his own crew had been an effective help with this part), and then marooning the shamed Captain Saluhkatar Halsad onto a lone rock in the middle of the ocean to die of embarrassment. Handing the reins of this float to his most accommodated Captain Gaearindil Thavron, Araldur had allowed the ruse of a Umbarian ship to approach and assault the southerly Haradrim coast. The indigenous folk of that realm then, rushing to embrace their corsair allies, were brutally slaughtered in a massacre which the sea struggled to wash out of the bloodied beach after. The usurped ship had thrown them entirely unawares, and the few survivors fled back to their homes, to spread word of the Umbarian betrayal.

Halsad industries had never suffered such a blow to it’s affluence, and the injury rendered between the Great Umbarian House and it’s foreign friends was only narrowly saved by the negotiations of Salukhatar’s brother, who had took one of the Harad Chief’s daughters for his bride. Heavy laden had the flotilla of Lond CŰl carried on it’s journey home, and yet in the wake of Thorongil’s assault on Umbar itself, there were few threats willing to risk their remaining nautical strength upon the arrogant young Swan Knight.

Reckless some had named Araldur for abandoning his own duty in defending Lond CŰl, but he took little heed of their concerns, proclaiming that the mighty Dimaethor across the river were more than capable of holding the fort – literally – at home. The audacious sailor’s generosity went no small way to soften hard hearts after the fact, however. Gold was flung from his carriage by the plate load, and extortionate orders were placed with the finest craftsmen in all Dol Amroth to purchase the best tools, resources and equipment that the fishermen, the ship builders, and the private militia of their Golden Harbour would see again for a long time. Long needed repairs were rectified upon the gargantuan defence mechanisms of the vulnerable estuary. And though Lord Isilmar shook his ancient head and warned his eldest son that ‘luck would catch up to him’, still the people cheered Araldur's name, and he laughed and cared not what might have been. For it had not.

Until that day.


There were that many more vendors, traders and assistants catering to the auspicious celebration that nobody noted a particularly weatherbeaten Saluhkatar Halsad, nor what cargo he boarded his own beloved vessel. Anyone who saw the corsair stopped not to ask who he was, for there were far too many faces to name in those busy, hectic hours. If any had stopped to wonder what was in the sacks he carried, one after another, into the hold of the captive ship, they would still have guessed far from the truth. For no one suspected, and nobody knew.

Until the corsair ship met it’s end on it’s own terms, deliberately sabotaged to flail to the depths in an inferno that was before time, and far more extensive than any of the AzrubÍl had planned. Not that any man aboard had time enough in the horror of those moments to even register their surprise.

The revenge of Saluhkatar Halsad was swift, unexpected, and an end of an era. Lord Isilmar, Lord Araldur, the Captain Gaearindil and most of their friends and acquaintances, much less countless folk of the region whose demise was equally felt at home: they all were robbed of this world. The delicious thought carried Saluhkatar to his grave, cackling as he took his own life in the dungeons of Ost-en-Ernil, determined that his execution should be, like that of his ship, the matter for his own two hands.


Not so easily did the folk of Lond CŰl think to be bold thereafter, nor to count on the luck or fortune of Men who played as though they were the Gods.




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”Warder” Thavron with Ruberon Rochindil
Stables of Castle AzrubÍl, Lond CŰl, Belfalas,
Present Day

The entrance was so practiced that the groomsman did not stir from his toil. Not until he noted the young Man who led a pair of fine horses to a stall adjacent, and fell in automatically beside the labourer. Still he said naught, but glanced sidelong to the emptied hook where the tool had hung months now. He smiled to himself, to resume their alliance in the task they had shared for long years. And for a time they worked in wordless unison, with a dedication that seemed almost competitive. But the young man had ever failed to live up to his mentor’s skill and speed. As though Ruberon had been put upon this earth to muck out stalls. But that were not the case. Of course, once upon a time Warder had not expected to devote such a portion of his life to horse care either.

“Didn’t hear them announce you at the gate,” his old friend admitted. “His Lordship was not so fortunate. She was looking out for them.”

The Squire then hesitated, as though he knew not who Ruberon referred to, though there was no mystery. Lady Eressild ruled the Castle, had done since the death of Araldur with such a presence that folk need not speak her actual name, which would be presumptious. Neither though ought they to name her the Lady of the estate, for in truth that title was reserved, for the day that the official Lord might take a wife .. Still there was not a soul who did not fall to Eressild’s ‘suggestion’ of how things be done. Lord Edhelmir least of all.

“She does not know all the ways in which we ever have got in, and out, when need arose,” Warder did not boast but seemed oddly wearied by the notion. Or maybe the exhaustion was memory of chasing after the young Lady Ilisys and seeking to keep her out of trouble.

“Good news travels fast, and far,” the elderly servant supposed. “Was it your mother sent word ?” he asked, and met no sign of response. Easing himself upright, Ruberon placed a once strong battle-scarred hand upon the young man’s shoulder.

Try as he might, the son of the bride could not bring heart to shake it off, or move. Breathing was a chore, when he might break into confession of his troubled mind this hour. It had not been summons from his mother that had brought them toward her re-marriage. “She ” he managed, once more alleging the work of Lady Eressild. Rather than risk an opinion on the entire affair, Warder instead threw extra gusto into their errand. Rube sighed and did not press what would likely prove an unwelcome subject. He had taken the boy under his wing, as much as though he were his own. For the groomsman had lost his son on the fateful shipping disaster, the same hour that had stolen Warder’s father: the now pending bride’s first husband. Time came however, when the two had fulfilled any distraction that they might manage, and the horses of that stable were the most pampered and attended as any in the history of time.

“They were taking bets, down in the kitchen,” Rube sauntered confidently down an easier road of conversation, “what manner of return we might expect of the young lady, to present for this great party.” A side glance betrayed the servant’s aspirations, to gauge of the young man’s face some clue. For sure Ruberon had rolled out a wager himself.

At that the squire could not resist a smile, though his eyes dropped to the recently swept floor he would find no wayward crumb of distraction there to save him from questions.

“Come lad, do your favourite old man a favour and let on some,” the stablesgroom wheedled and cajoled, setting onto a stool, with a hand upon each knee to prop up his intrigue.

"My allegiance is to my Lady alone," the noblewoman's Warder declared, proudly. "Besides, I shall be in the most abhorrent trouble if she is found out ! Let us but say she will be along accordingly." he sighed, leading the stablegroom to suspect that she had managed to outrun her ardent escort and lose him. Yet again.



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Lady Ilisys AzrubÍl
Out of sight, but not out of mind
Waters of Lond CŰl

It might be supposed that none would guess the current whereabouts and state of young Lady Ilisys. Though the people who had doted on the small father-less child and petted her whims and strange behaviour all the years that carried her unto womanhood, they knew it was best to expect the unexpected. Isys had made play of leaping out from windows into the arms of startled gardeners, and hiding in linen cupboards to the relief of alarmed maidservants. Age had not entirely diminished her game of surprising people. If they had known her polished mother’s worst nightmare, they ought to have presumed the one place that she knew she could hide from her mother, always.

Wrapped in the skin of her underdress, Isys was under the water that she counted still her home. Close to the bay, she cavorted about those gathering up coral, one of the estate’s greatest and most beautiful exports. Bubbles of amusement escaped her nose and her mouth at their astonished expressions. She was not alone in needing to break the surface soon after. But she elected not to accompany them back unto their boats. With a wave she dove once more below, and headed to inspect the monstrous foundations of the estuary’s defence bastions.

A loyal servant of Gondor should not be disinclined after all, to mind the duties of her forefathers. Or at the very least to discern from overhearing what their austere neighbour, Lord Z‚inabÍn Dimaethor might think of the impending nuptials ...

Lantaelen
23/Oct/2017, 07:28 PM
Dimaethor Estate Ė Down by the water
Belfalas, on the coasts north of Dol Amroth

Searching for pearls, a surprise visitor


Pearl diving was a perilous sport. The only means to find a bounty of any worth was at least the work of many days or weeks, for not all oysters and mussels that could be found yielded a prize worthy of value. Yet for the youngest daughter of Dimaethor, it was more a sport than a necessity. The sea-calling had long been foretold in her and to the world-spanning ocean upon which the Dimaethors dwelt only served to heighten that desire. Like the mariners of old, brimming with curiosity, the want to explore every nook, niche, cove, or den in the local beaches was prevalent and even after a half-decade, there was always secrets to discover.

Tirelessly, she would dive and swim, descending into depths sometimes twenty to thirty feet under. Only years of practice and repetition had garnered her such a stamina and endurance of lung to repeat such a descent over and over again. The dangers were not unknown to her as her mother repeatedly pointed out in her scolding warnings to the daydreaming girl. Hostile creatures for one, not to mention a sudden flash storm having the possibility of nabbing her and tugging her far out to sea where even her strength would not survive her. There was always the danger of maiming, for the water in such quantity could be powerful and violent indeed. Damage to her eyes or even drowning due to exhaustion of limb could result in her end.

Yet to Lady Azr‚indil Dimaethor, to look upon the spherical gem that was the fruits of her labour, nothing was more worth it. Perhaps it was greed that drove her, though she rarely kept the stones for herself. Even now, her intent was to find enough for a worthy gift of the prospective bride just over the river. On the beach, her clothes had been abandoned, with a growing pile of mussels and oysters next to them, glistening in the sun. One could gather up a hundred of the creatures and not even find a pearl among them. But something about today made Azr‚indil feel a bit hopeful for a decent find.

She had to be careful where she harvested her finds however, as her father repeatedly pointed out. Crossing the river and possibly finding pearls on the opposite shore might bring about a conflict over ownership as it was not Dimaethor land to begin with. And whoever owned the land owned whatever it could yield, crops or gemstones or anything else. The last thing her father wanted was more of their wealth (despite it all belonging to Azr‚indil through her efforts, her father still claimed it through right of parenthood over her) claimed by the perceived rivals across. Azr‚indil however cared little for it though and continued with her sport all the same. Life was too short to be tied down in such grudges. The world was vast and all the more haste to see as much of it as one could, on land and beneath water both.

It was her third dive of the morning and with great flourish, her mop of wet black hair broke the surface followed by her face, gasping for air and kicking her feet vigorously to stay afloat. Her torso from neck to knee was covered in a wetsuit of calf skin and long boots covered her feet and calves. In one hand, she clutched a trio of oysters, while she used her other to wipe at her eyes. It was dangerous to open oneís eyes underwater and she did so in bursts to see where she was going, though often it would sting. No doubt her motherís warning was right that this sport might maim her first before she found enough value to make it all worth it.

Her back were at first towards the land and the fortress of defence behind, where she had began her search that morning. The sun shone over the waters and glimmered on her face, basking in it a moment after long moments beneath the water, where no heat touched or kissed. Turning, oysters in hand, she began to make her way shoreward when she caught sight of another individual. At first she gasped and paused, for it would be scandalous and very inappropriate for a daughter of nobility to be seen in her semi-dressed state. She sighed when she saw it was another woman of course but it did little to alleviate her worries.

The woman was none other than Lady AzrubÍl, the daughter of the former Lord, Araldur. Azr‚indil only knew her by sight and reputation, though much of the latter was coaxed by her father and she found herself skeptical of what she heard. The woman looked as if she had been swimming as well. But why was she so near to the dormant defences, close to the Dimaethor side? To wander onto the otherís land without announcement could draw tremendous suspicion from her father.

There was no chance of Azr‚indil avoiding the woman. She had burst from the water with flourish and had made her presence known before she was even aware of the older woman. With a smile, she drifted nearer to the shore until her feet touched sand and she strode out, heading for her clothes and previous collection which she saw had not been stolen or taken as jetsam. ďGood morning, Lady.Ē She greeted with a pleasant smile, picking up a fur cloak and wiping it about her shoulders. The winter material was useful for quickly and hurriedly drying off.

ďYou must pardon my intrusion upon your reprieve. I was not aware you were using this patch of beach. Have you come to soothe your nerves as well? I imagine it must be quite hectic and chaotic in your home.Ē Azr‚indil said, shifting her boots nervously in the sand. It certainly bothered her, for she knew her own time would be coming soon where she would be arranged to some distant lord or scion of a noble house. She glanced only fugitively at the other woman too. The conflict between her family and the AzrubÍl was complicated and beyond her. She knew not where Isys may have stood on the matter.

Plopping herself down cross-leggedly, the youngest daughter of Dimaethor drew her recent collection of oysters and mussels and began to pry them up, searching their interior for the gleam of pearls. At least what she garnered could be distributed to the needy and hungry, few that they be yet not non-existent within her family's lands. She gave a little squeak of pain when the lip of one calm bit into her finger a bit too harshly but she shrugged it off, having felt the bite of them many times before. Despite her status, she certainly did not have the soft hands expected of a demure lady. "You been away at the wars of Minas Tirith? Pray tell, you have any rumour or news of my brother?" She asked, fear and anxiety somewhat forgotten.