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  1. Nolewen's Avatar
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    #1

    Paths of Eriador II




    Long are the leagues between Bree and Rivendell. There are none who dwell there on a permanent basis, and except for the rangers of the North, few used to travel there. However, the grim tales from the South and East have brought with them people from far-off lands, and the great South Road is now busier than it ever was since the old kingdom of Arnor fell. The roads are also more dangerous now, as there are some there who are not so interested in their destination as in what other travellers carry with them...


    Rules:
    Keep everything family-friendly and in accordance with the Lone Lands general posting rules.
    This is a free roaming thread. You can travel through the Lone Lands as you like here, or RP yourself leaving from or arriving in one of
    Eriador's other areas.
    All are welcome. Ranger, innocent
    traveller, or crook, the choice is yours! Be wary though, as obvious
    servants of Sauron may quickly find the rangers on their path...
    Every now and then, mini-RPG prompts will be given. You may react to them at your leisure.
    All RPs continued from last thread.

    OP credit: Elennáro Mordagnir and Merly
    Last edited by Nolewen; 28/Jun/2016 at 06:55 AM.
    Elmehtar, Sperewigend

    "I am glad that you are here with me. Here at the end of all things, Sam."

    Frodo, RotR

  2. Tribute and Tidings




    Min Colvarn, Dunland
    Approximate the time that
    the Queen of Iron Campaign
    occurs in Angmar

    The Mage Queen, wearing a snugly fitting black lace dress, approached the assembly with a regal grace. The amethyst pendants of her dark wax choker and the small tanzanite skulls of her circlet of silver glistened brilliantly in the sunlight. Drest who had been gone for some time had returned with a multitude of hill-men. He seemed dust-clad and travel-weary as if the sorcerer had journeyed a long distance. Despite his discomfort and sullied appearance, he looked giddy...until Thairrim opened his mouth.

    Drest had a reason to fear.

    Thairrim's revelation of the caster's misdeeds triggered a flashing sensation of horror cooly through her
    . She stood very still, a flush of anger reddening her beautiful ivory complexion as her eyes bored coldly into Drest's. Aura Camlost's violet irises unnaturally brightened as her consuming fury slowly burned away her trust of the sorcerer she believed was her most faithful acolyte.

    She almost felt sorry for her servant since he seemed genuinely convicted of his trespass but she had to chastise him or he would step out of line again...if he had the chance at all for certainly if he did not make amends, the Coven was surely doomed.

    She took a gliding, cat-like step toward him and cupped Drest's bearded cheek tenderly. "All you've done in my name and for my glory - as well as for your own delusions of grandeur - has threatened the existence and survival of the Coven," she said softly, her fingertips aglow with coruscating crimson energy. "I shouldn't thank you, dearest. You should be condemned. I have always believed you were the most intelligent fellow I've known; sadly, I was mistaken."

    It happened quickly, channeling her strongest binding curse to momentarily castrate his Morgul strength, but prohibiting the Gift was not enough. The shrinking spell she cast shrunk him swiftly. Aura glared at palm-sized Drest who looked so weak and fragile, standing vulnerably on her hand. All she had to do was squeeze and he would burst open like a disgusting bug that needed squashing. "Stealing troops from Angmar for my army was a foolish thing to do!" Aura sternly lectured itty bitty Drest, giving his sternum a hard poke. "The Queen of Iron is no longer in command. I have conspired for Amarthel to be reassigned so Jadis of Forochel, one of our own sorcerers, can rule Angmar herself so our country can never again be controlled. I have given her complete autonomy. That's not something you needed to know until I knew her power was fully consolidated in the north. Regardless, even if it had been the Delgaran in command, your failure to ask me permission to recruit hillmen in Angmar would have impelled us into a defensive battle with an irate opposing force; we would have lost countless mages and Dunlending braves. Perhaps even our entire society would have been obliterated."

    Aura, forgetting about Drest's familar and the once kneeling masses who now cowered before her, tormented her subaltern's flesh and bones with roughest handling she could muster. Her fingers explored his small limbs and teeny ribcage with terrible violence, tearing every tendon and breaking every bone her wicked ministrations could brutally locate.

    "The Elves who escaped could have revealed the existence of the Coven to Mordagnir which would sully centuries of carefully plotted subterfuge, virtually destroying any chance of ours to wipe out our enemies and reclaim the majesty and mastery that once defined us, you pettifogging imbecile." She bent his right arm painfully to an unnatural angle with an audible, hideous crack!

    "If my ally discovers the theft of her subjects and believes that I have stolen them, the Coven will fall like the petals of a withering rose. Whose fault will that be? Yours...or perhaps mine? I should have known better than to leave a Stoneclaw alive." She flexed slowly, constricting her grip around him until Drest's bruised face turned an awful shade of blue. "You must be punished for your selfish designs but I shouldn't do the killing." A satisfied, evil smirk played on her full red lips when Baldawin - her familiar - materialized from the ether in a gust of blue-black smoke, transforming into lithe panther form. He opened his massive jaws when Aura, lifting Drest by his hair, dangled the arrogant, prodigal sorcerer above the lethal maw of the Beast. Moments ago, she only wanted to remonstrate him; now, she was angry enough to execute him.

    "Momma, don't, please!"

    Aura grimaced like she tasted something too sour or horribly rancid. "Give me one second, love," Aura pleaded with her daughter, Aileen Camlost, holding aloft the index finger of her free hand imperiously.

    "We need to talk about this now," insisted the precocious young girl whom Aura turned to face. She had ridden bareback on Filrain, her pale-and-gold wildcat familiar. The ponytailed Princess of Rhudaur wore a strapless and white buckskin dress with a delicate crown of silver prettily decorating her fine dark-brown hair. Her alabaster skin glowed luminously in the crepuscular sunlight filtering through the cottony clouds drifting above.

    For a brief moment, Aura nearly felt inferior to her own child. She seemed so pure, so angelic.

    "I must discipline Drest,"
    firmly stated the Witch Queen, idly swinging him back and forth near Baldawin's slavering mouth. Each time Drest was swung too close to the panther's fangs, the animal would playfully snap his teeth together, purposefully intimidating the weakened sorcerer.

    "I heard everything.
    He was just trying to impress you."

    "And, if Jadis finds out about this, his sweet gesture will embroil the Coven in a civil war!"


    "Then tell her what happened yourself so she doesn't think you have ulterior motives,"
    Aileen insisted. "Be candid with her. Your servant made a mistake and he's correcting it, no cause for concern...or retaliation. Better you be honest with your friend and partner so she won't imagine you've betrayed her confidence. Meanwhile, Drest can earn your trust again. He's always been an invaluable asset to the community, being a wise instructor and one of the Coven's greatest mages." Her meek, quiet voice gained strength. "You need Drest. And I need Drest. He's good to me and I don't feel safe without him. My father is gone. You've taken away my friends. Drest is one of the few anchors I have left. More importantly, Shytha might be displeased if Drest is slain. Wouldn't you rather the demons be on your side than against you?"

    Aura struggled with the inner turmoil of letting Drest go. She wanted to protect the Coven and felt her anger wouldn't be sated without the offender's destruction but her duty as a mother overshadowed her role as the brotherhood's guardian and eclipsed her ardent need for retribution. Aileen had been abused by Gwladys, a teacher in the Morgul Academy here in Min Colvarn, and now believed only Drest (possibly even Mercy) wouldn't hurt her. Aura couldn't afford to sacrifice her little girl's well-being for her own self-gratification.

    Snarling, Aura tossed her battered victim into her daughter's receiving hands. Aileen knelt, lying Drest delicately on the grassy earth. Her fingertips danced over his shrunken figure, brilliantly shining with lavender fire. She returned him to ordinary height and healed his wounds. Aura grew agitated, watching Aileen crooning over him, rocking Drest in her slender arms, murmuringly assuring him he would feel sore for a while before he felt better; she was one of the few healers in the Coven and knew her ability and its effects well. She pressed her pink lips softly against her mentor's brow as if in benediction, absolving him of his crimes.

    "Enough,"
    Aura ordered with a steely tone, looming threateningly over her daughter. Aileen frowned, retreating to the side. "You're lucky she likes you and is more forgiving than I am," Aura warned Drest, grabbing him by the collar, "but remember this: If you ever jeopardize the security of the Coven again, you will suffer as you've never suffered before." She gave him a shove backwards. "Get these hill-men out of here. Return them where you got them. I'll contact Jadis but it's your priority to fix your mess in the north. The Orcs and Mortals of Angmar are now allies of Rhudaur. If the peace is shattered you'll be scourged. Your full potential will never be realized without the Coven so next time you have any plans which may affect our brethren, you approach me first before doing something stupid. If you want to feel useful, bring me hillmen - in small groups, not droves - from places in the Downs, the Weather Hills, and Rhudaur I have yet visited." She appraised Thairrim next. "I accept your service. Go with Drest and be his bodyguard. Perhaps if you prove yourself adequately, I will reward you but remember what happened today. I do not tolerate disobedience nor irresponsibility."

    Last edited by Beren Camlost; 28/Apr/2016 at 04:49 PM. Reason: Correcting typos
    "Maybe I can stop thinking about the past.
    I've found something better to take its place."

    - Charles Main

  3. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #3

    Tribute and Tidings (3)



    Drest Stoneclaw, Sorceror of Rhudaur
    with Shytha, and also Gutthard Blacktooth

    Min Colvarn, Dunland
    (occurring during the Queen of Iron/Angmar Campaign)

    All colour forsook the Sorceror's long face, in favour of raising a fever in his furious monarch's complexion. He did not raise the abyss of his eyes to meet with the inferno glare of the WitchQueen. He was too well familiar with the look he had seen endowed upon unfortunates of the Coven who had 'displeased' her. Always he had revelled in such demonstrations of Aura's potency. Never had he found himself the target of her rancor. Until now.

    Gutthard backed away, his feet instinctively retreating, without his ever making the conscious decision to do so. All ranks of the assembled HIllmen struggled between pulling their intrigued attention from the crisis unfolding, and avoiding the eye of the vicious Woman for their own sakes. Shytha calmly walked the line at their front, as an overseer who seemed properly unconcerned by her charges. The Familiar splayed and fisted her fingers, as might a wild beast, yawning. She rolled her head first upon one shoulder, then the other, the slick brown locks of her hair soiling her pale shoulders. She seemed nigh enraptured by the torment here occurring, as though it were a song only she could hear. Drest swallowed, despite himself, resigned that he should find no help in even his most devout accomplice this day.

    The embers of the Sorceress's crimson fingertips seared the coarse, dusky bristles of his beard, while he closed each of his own hands around his own wrists behind him. Noxious green glowed the line of his dirtied, jagged fingernails, as though spits of toxic fumes riffled upon the stems of his long, yellowed fingers. A show of defiance would only worsen her temper, so he braced for the inevitable. This was going to be bad. But he would not turn, he would not look to run. He was the last of the Stoneclaw. But he had lasted this long, and he had never fled. He was not made to flee.

    Even when she stripped of him that advantage of his long-practiced skills, as though it were but the mere cloth that hung heavy with dust to robe him; even then she was not done. Harmless was humiliating enough, but then to be spurned, as though she might cause him to simply cease to be. So small. so insignificant. As though he really was nothing. It was beyond deplorable. Still he said naught. For naught should have made difference. Not when the Witchqueen had took against him. Staggering about the riotous plateau of her soft palm, he strove to keep his feet, until she righted his efforts for balance by closing her cyclopean grasp about his mini form. There was nowhere to run, no room to move. And the ripples of her slightest whim caused her fingers in turn to pummel and pelt his swiftly battered body. His arm splintered under the abrasive flick of one small finger. And then .. the jaws of death .. Baldawin's elation was as palpable as Drest's distress. Each capricious jerk could end his life, but would prove only the beginning of a slow torturous death.

    The disgraced conjurer scarcely recognised the protests of Aileen, or the chance that he might be spared until the princess accomplished that conclusion. Her soft, velvety skin closed around his wary, still tiny self, protectively, before he was laid out upon the springy bed of earth below. And even as he dared to spy upon the massive figures that loomed all about him, they shrank and/or he grew. The girl was soon smaller than he, as age properly decreed; although he felt still not a little exposed, and well raw. Like someone had removed all of his skin and rained down acid over his unveiled bones.

    But the indignity was not yet done, as Aura seized him by the collar and delivered a demanding conclusion to her anger. Hurled backward, he stumbled on the torn hang of his robes and met the earth with his behind in a surprising new seat of shame.

    Finally, as awkward silence struggled to restrain the guffaws of mocking laughter, Drest staggered to his feet, waving off Aileen's efforts to help him back upright. Both hands planted shakingly around both his respective knees, the Stoneclaw breathed deep as though regaining composure. Then he rallied abruptly upright, almost as though spasmodic currents had carried through his form.

    "Behold !" he spluttered, and then coughed wizenly before starting afresh. "Behold the mighty Queen of Rhudaur," he addressed the gathered Hillmen without glancing awkwardly at either of the women who had fought so recently over him, as though he were scraps for their opposing tables. "Did I not proclaim that her strength is unparalled ?" he threw out the profession, before his Queen suspected further mutiny. "And you, those of you who saw in Angmar all that I exhibited for your amazement," he cast dark eyes toward Thairrim, daring the upstart to even approach amusement, "see now how her most meagre of efforts far exceed my mightiest endeavours ! See why we all serve her. Why, I am blessed," he spat out some blood over his shoes, and clamped an arm over a still tender rib, "I am blessed and honoured to serve as her lesson, nay, as her example to you all ! That whatever wonders in these wide world, whatever other shows of strength you may think that you have seen ... all are nothing when compared to her."

    Shytha halted her pacing as the Hillman recovered his tongue, if naught else. She sidled silkily past Gutthard and Thairrim, shoving each young man as though she opened a set of wet drapes. Half-intrigued at Drest's efforts to turn this disparagement to an advantage, the demon licked her lips. A cool breeze ruffled the dark, sleek fur of the panther, Baldawin. The mark of Shytha. An icy touch to run down any unsuspecting back.

    "I shall never beg forgiveness, your eminence, for my unwavering faith in the esteemable strength of this coven" Drest persevered, even as Gutthard tried and failed to pick his crooked limbs to right and stand back up. Drest yanked him up by one arm, and both grunted with the effort it plagued them. "But I thankyou for the pointed reminder," persisted the drivel, in ever now growing volumes as his passion overcame the punishment he sought to bury fast from recall, ever. He found reverance in dropping his eyes before Aura. "Have no care. For we Hillfolk are nothing if not resillient. We can take the pain. We can take the humiliation. We have endured both for ages of this Middle Earth. And so I know, I swear to you, that we can take back this land which was stolen of us all."

    There came then an uneasy vaccuum where the Hillmen might have expected that they should cheer. But the notion of expressing any opinion aloud had been already severed from their want. They stood, awed, and utterly overwhelmed.

    "Your Queen would see you flock to the banners of her sister," Drest wiped blood from his lip and grimaced as his bones began to knit back together; "to the Ice Queen Jadis." He felt compelled to spell it out to them, and paused. Each word was shaped by the pain of air rushing all too eagerly back into his deflated lungs. "For who here shall now dare defy the might of the Witchqueen ?" he challenged, needlessly. A quiver of fear and enthused commitment rippled through the gathered soldiers. "You have seen what awaits you if you should prove unworthy. You have seen but a glimpse of awaits our real foe ! And we shall hold their gaze and focus while the coven rallies in secret. And then, upon the day of reckoning when Rhudaur joins Angmar in due force to hold this land, what remains of us shall proudly brandish the pennant of the almighty WitchQueen ! A sight as fair to behold as that of our reunited kingdom !"

    They cheered, might be as much to mark the end of the long speech as for the mantra detailed. And Drest, with a wink, dropped a hand about Aileen's dark veil and ruffled her hair. It was as much a thankyou as the gaunt but grim mystic would manage. With one final, and particularly painful bow before his monarch, the last of the Stoneclaws made for the recovery of his small home. Pushing Gutthard before him, he grasped the shoulder of Thairrim, and hissed in the young spy's ear.

    "You either chose on purpose not to tell me about the Ice queen, or you knew no more about her existence than I did," he pointed out, angrily, assigning all blame he could onto the nearest body. "Which makes you either extremely stupid or extremely bad at the career you claim !" And with a less than subtle grumble about a fool adolescent bodyguard .. which to Drest's mind clearly proved that Aura didnt care too much at all if he were kept alive, even after all of the show and tell; Drest slammed the door deliberately in the face of Thairrim.

    Shytha orbited the chaste form of Aileen once, without ever presenting a threat. Save for her usual, unrelenting and unnerving stare. Then she shifted thin lips into an untelling smile. Dropping her head in apparent reverance before the Witchqueen, the malevolent demon emmitted a departing sentiment that played in Aura's ears alone.

    "He always was a handful, Shytha confided, almost maternal in her drawling admission. "Aren't they all ? Still it is important, I believe, for everyone to be sure quite where the real power lies around here .."

    The demon cast a meaningful last look over one shoulder, that could scarcely tear it's meaning away from the little girl .. who had just demonstrated that her will was greater than the WitchQueen's. Quite aware that Aura could scarce outcry anybody for merely insinuating that the young Princess was growing .. stronger ....every day .. Shytha slunk into a sail, almost a thick mist, as she dissolved from sight, leaving but her signature chill behind her.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 30/Apr/2016 at 06:42 PM.

  4. Troigan's Avatar
    Scavenger of Mordor
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    #4
    ​Tharrim
    Min Colvarn, Dunland


    Thairrim
    bobbed his head back nervously like scampering animal as Drest seized him and as scolded him for his audience with the queen. All he thought was just sharing what he heard from the orc, Snazkh back in the mountains, he didn't think it would compromise with anyone's intents.

    And as soon as his supposed master cast him aside and slammed the door on his face, the boy smoldered and scowled in confusion, dismay, frustration and of course anger. He sat alone in the room, still reminiscing the grip Drest had on him and the venomous spite he hissed in his ear; and how other men look down on him. Thairrim cursed and he spat against the wall "Lousy rotten hillman upstart!" he uttered angrily "This is what I get for my loyalty to the people of Angmar?! If I had any premonition back then, I would have just as easily sided with the orcs! Craven they may be, at least they knew their plan they were sticking to!"

    He sat and pouted, then he pondered, seemingly alone. He onomatopoeically proclaimed "And it seems the Queen wanted nothing to do with me to, If this is my duty here, then I'm having none of it either! I'm leaving!!"

    Thairrim grabbed a sheet of cloth and a candle mounted on the wall, but before he could slip out fro the window, a notion occurred to him "The Queen's Daughter!" he thought to himself "Of course, if I could swoon the princess, I might be able to sidle up with the Queen. Then I can show them all that I can be just as right and ruling as Drest, or maybe even more so!"

    Thairrim clasped his hands together eagerly, went along the hall to present himself to the Queen. He even grabbed a bouquet of flowers from a vase along the hall. He found her not the Aura herself, but low and behold to him, there was his daughter, Aileen. After peeking through the doorway, he fixed up his clothes before entering.

    As he entered, and stroked his hair before, he eased his breath and walked up to the princess. He kneeled before handing out the flowers and said "My lady, daughter of the Queen, I humbly apologize for any inconvenience that happened earlier, but know I mean you or your mother no bad blood. As a follower of the Hillmen, and the people of Angmar itself, I Thairrim, scout of Angmar, am but your servant." He looked up with a calm and convincing blissful smile and a light lift in his eyes. "You name whatever task you need me to be done, and I shall abide. But I do apologize for not knowing your name." he said with a collective chuckle. "Who may I address my servitude to, ma'am?"

  5. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #5

    Long Ago, not Far away .. (1)

    '... they came out of the Chetwood. The land had been falling steadily ... and they now entered a wide, flat expanse of country, much more difficult to manage. They were far beyond the borders of Breeland, and drawing near to the Midgewater Marshes.

    The ground now became damp, and in places boggy and here and there they came upon pools, and wide stretches of reeds and rushes filled with the warbling of little hidden birds. They had to pick their way [through] carefully ... At first they made fair progress, but as they went on, their passage became slower and more dangerous. The marshes were bewildering and treacherous, and there was no clear trail even for Rangers to find through their shifting quagmires. The flies began to torment them, and the air was full of clouds of tiny midges that crept up their sleeves and their breeches and into their hair
    '

    (A knife in the dark, FOTR)


    Hazel Witchwood, Ibella Ninnian and Siora Stoneclaw
    Midgewater Marshes
    35 Years ago

    There was no thought of discretion, save an irksome understanding that it was beyond her. Hazel had left home utterly unprepared, in small, soft shoes that served as no protection from the numbing ooze of stagnant marsh. She tore each of her bare legs, in their turn, free from the sodden mulch, and observed in horror the oily sheen that coated her blanched skin. It took every ounce of will to sink her limbs yet further along the treacherous lack of path. Her pretty butterscotch dress was easily flecked by the dirtied puddles which clung to her thighs, the hem of her home-spun garb hung heavy with the weight of the exhuastive effort.

    What panic had first caused her to fear that the baby might be drowned in all this sodden bog, was only suspended by the far sight of a pale green light. It haunted the distance as though a lit fire, though the girl had doubts that any fire she had heard of could take form in such a saturated climate. Thought of turning back teased her want for relief. But the dread of locating her goal was no less fearful than the prospect of explaining how she had let the small, helpless baby become ever lost.

    Bella must hear her approach, she realised. For there was no means to silence the protest of the waters that she ruefully disturbed. Exactly what she planned to do when she ever caught up with the more wily adolescent, Hazel had no real thought. Yet. But it was difficult to plan when she knew not quite what she would discover.

    And what she did discover, she could never have prepared for ...

     

    There were two girls, their inky silhouettes planted, knee-deep, in the heinous mire. Hazel paused, and blinked to count them. She could manage no sight of the stolen baby, and wondered how things might have shifted beyond all reason. A soupy brume invited the unlikely hunter to wave one hand uselessly before her face, as though she might have some chance to ward off the vast smog of insects which buzzed like a migraine. If the two girls were in fact engrossed in conversation, their lonely audience could guess only at their tone and subject by the vigorous hand gestures which the pair of shadows made against an obscure backdrop. The Breegirl ducked, lest they observe her, and as though she had evaded the thick of the smog that hovered now above, she managed to ignore the numbing sensation that consumed her legs. She heard ... some ... of the conversation.

    "You shall be in the worst kind of trouble, and I .."

    "I need it. I will have the power. You can not stop .."

    "You can not take life from others to feed yourself !"

    "We can not all trip over a magic book. You were lucky. I make my own .."

    "You will cause attention, Bella ! They will come looking .."

    As though the very notion had inspired the two strangers to suspect, they stalled in their shrill debate and Hazel ducked but further, deeper, so that her waist was submerged within the swamp. One wet hand clamped across her mouth to keep from breathing aloud. The offensive smell and the taste were too vastly overwhelming though, and evoked an untimely, and audible retching reaction ..

    The thin stream of bile muddied swiftly in with the rest of the slough. Hazel watched the dank fluid kaleidoscope that marbled the gross surface that clung to her (now shivering) form. A figure rose up through the storm of insects that were nesting in her hair. Her twin braids twisted damp and spindly from either side of Hazel's hair. And as the Breegirl focused on the unavoidable vision of Bella, ploughing through the wetlands with a maniacal smile and a trail of strewn reed, like a great net, trailing from one hand ...

    Hazel Witchwood did not foresee the cold hands which clamped down over each of her ears. The existance of somebody arrived without any given warning, behind her. Hazel could have sworn she screamed, but she heard nothing. Freezing cold was the marsh which climbed the heights of her skinny legs. Her hands rose, fluttering like trapped wings and yet fell eventually limp. As Siora Stoneclaw pressed her all finger tips against the spy's damp skull. Both girls locked in contact held their eyes closed, although Bella kept her's wide enough open for the three of them. The baby-snatcher squeezed her hands together as her face tightened into a feral grin. She watched. She squeed with maniacal glee to see the show. To see what she wished she could do herself.

    Hazel felt the pressure of Siora's touch, as though the young Witch had bored holes into her victim's skull. A vivid sensation of worms emnating through those new, invisible tunnels, assailed, and Hazel whimpered, but once. Then the wriggling began to freeze, until it felt as though her whole head had been emptied of all she had been. Her mind replaced by a brimming quota of icy water.

    It was peaceful, it was soothing. All the fear and the worry and the concern diminished. Hazel's face softened into a fleshy mask of slumber, and she surrendered to the sincere lack of .. anything.

    When she woke, the two girls had gone and there was no sign of baby Clancy Dogwood. Not that Hazel would have thought to look for any of them. She was unaware of their ever existing. She was more concerned with where she was, and how she had got there. Or had she always been there ? She could not have said.

    Inspecting her ruined dress with one hand, she swatted the buzz of tiny insects that were crawled all about her dark hair. Her very name escaped her. And all notion of what she might do now was comprised of escaping herself. From the bog. It could not go on forever, could it ? She began to walk, because there was nothing here for her. Whatever lay out beyond the bog, she would face that, and whatever she would be, beyond the bog ..
    Last edited by Ercassie; 24/Nov/2016 at 10:32 PM.

  6. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #6

    Whispers most wicked

    'There was a certain man in [Angmar] long ago,
    He was big and strong and his eyes were all aglow.
    Some people looked at him with terror and with fear ....

    But when his drinking and his lusting and his hunger for power became known to more and more people,
    The demands to do something about this outrageous man grew louder and louder ...
    "

    (Rasputin, Boney M)







    Drest Stoneclaw, Sorceror of Rhudaur
    with Shytha and also Gutthard Blacktooth

    Min Colvarn, Dunland

     

    The doorframe endured it's vehement injury, and shuddered at the impact before spewing the door back to open wide. Drest, uncaring at the first, strode forcibly across the room, oblivious to the progression of shadow that stained the floor, chasing his path as though intending to catch him by the heels. The Sorceror whirled though at the last, in a wind of bloodied cloak, to face the mewling whine of ancient hinges, and he observed Thairrim striding away under a cloud of discontent. Assuming that the boy had thrown the door back open as an answer to their angry words, Stoneclaw scowled and raised his hand to summon the door closed anew.

    Wood groaned amidst complying, but no sooner did the portal embrace it's fitted barricade as it dared release the door, as before. It trawled the length of it's limitations, to admit an absent stranger. Drest furrowed his already stormy brow and narrowed lightless eyes.

    "Who dares ?!" he made demand, and found but mocking silence in reply. Gutthard startled from where he had been bulldozed into the room, in front of Drest, and had fallen in some state of shock at the interior since then. Somehow he veiled his macabre intrigue in all the sights that abounded, and met the Sorcerer's chilling gaze. Stoneclaw had his eagle stare trained upon the door, a challenge that it might be so fool to move again without due cause.

    "What is it ?" the boy wondered aloud. And followed the cue of his Master, startling visibly, as the door fled back upon its hinges. Slow it limped back into place though in the short thereafter, painfully, as though each slam shut it suffered was a violent blow that shuddered properly through it, and the entire frame of the small house.

    The dramatic flourish of one wrist saw the great gnarled wood table and its cast of mismatched chairs pile up against the door, before it swept the floor with shadows once again. The seconds that followed were counted in how many times, the nervous Gutthard forced swallow the length of his throat. But the door remained behind it's barricade and Drest nodded his head at last, as might a stern parent with an unruly child come to learn it's lesson.

    "Stay," the Sorceror directed, and sought out his private chambers, forsaking his new charge to fret if the order were for the door, or for him. A bafflement overcame the boy and he readied to sit, then fretted some more. For he had been given no such order. Should he remain standing ? Could he ? Tension from the audience with Aura ('Queen Aura', he corrected himself, albeit just mentally, in case she possessed the means to note his informal reference) had left him like a cat on a hot tin roof. Apprehensively, he tested his unnatural joints, lowering, from the first ill at ease, until he jolted back toward full height at a sharp noise. But recognising the door slam between him and his recently humbled employer, Gutthard released a sigh at his apparent abandonment, and tumbled like a bad torn concertina into a haphazard mess of limbs beneath him.

    Whatever had caused the door to swing open and shut now had ceased such a game. Already his mind sought to convince that somebody, amused at the Sorceror's upbraiding, had thought it wise to harrass him. While this seemed the last call that anyone who had met Drest should make, it was the least unnerving for his new apprentice. Picking at the dust that strewed the floor, Gutthard noted with amused glee that he could shift into whatsoever position and be not uncomfortable. All sensation robbed of his body, he did not suffer cold or cramp. Like a dog without a basket, he settled down on the flagstones to sleep off the arduous trek that they had taken through the long, mountainous spine, from Angmar.

     

    Drest perched on the edge of his dishevelled bed and eyed the bedroom door down the length of his great hook nose. He dared it to cavort under his scrutiny and only once he had kept his campaign for many minutes did he finally relax. Until ..

    It did not swing asunder, not like the last. This time, the wood of the door but swelled, as though a vast torrent of water careened against it from the far side. As he watched, the wood began to buckle, and then splinter. Until the point when he thought it would most certain break, such pressure looked to hurl against it from the outside in.

    And then it ceased. Deflating back to two-dimensions, the wooden barrier resumed it's mundane occupation. Drest threw himself flat upon his back, the bed and blankets swallowing what hurts of body still slowly recovered. Lids fell over the pits of his eyes, and he breathed in.

    The room breathed with him.

    Not merely the door but now the four walls that comprised his chamber began to bulge at the seams. As though the world was imploding. And, like a constricted throat, his air began to thin, his panic grow, and then the world returned to normal.

    Again. And again. And again.

    Drest believed himself inside an enormous, functioning lung. He recognised his torment, and called it out.

    "Shytha," the Caster's voice cracked and strained. "Be done. I have no mood now for your parlour tricks .."

    The shutters of the window shivered, like bare trees in winter, and the hangings on the wall leapt from their hooks, as though committing suicide. Face down upon the floor, they shuffled about, like blind mice with shattered limbs. And the darkness of the now shrouded room was soiled by a yet more tenebrous presence.

    Shytha shimmered like a skeletal moth, the deeps of her eyes so consuming an orifice that Drest could not tear away from the staring of her. Great wings germinated from her unclad, human form; not angelic sails of soft plummage, but vast sheets of bone-stretched skin, like webbed feet, fractured with the flex of each pulsing beat. Her chest distended and contracted in a harmonising duet with the living, heaving walls. She met the furthest stony canvas, and encouraged one curved fingernail to extend beyond all of the rest. Eyes fixed upon the shame-dressed Sorceror, she tore her talon down the length of the wall, leaving a dangerous fissure like an earthquake to mark it's passage.

    "And the lesson learnt ?"

    The words did not so much escape her throat as pummel the confines of Drest's skull. He grimaced as her presence tickled the path of his spine, and the lipless malice swilled about the small room like a deviant echo.

    "I learnt that I might be at death's door, and you will not look to act," he threw the acidic rebuke out on a wave of anger that subdued his fear. After all, she had all but raised him ever since he had come to the Coven. Shytha was possessed of a maternal impulse regarding the now-grown-man, but it little resembled any dictionary definition.

    "From your swagger I assumed that you cared none for your own safety," the room hissed, aptly serpentine, and the pillows grew cold under Drest's skin. The sheets designed to shield him from all discomfort, cemented their frail skin to his trembling carriage like a coat of brumal rain. The sensation exceeded cold. It surpassed frozen. It blasted indifference with wintry insistance and banished all else from the mortal's mind. "I would have enjoyed the avenging of you," Shytha confessed.

    "That is less than comforting," Drest forced the words through chattered teeth, and drew his cloak ever more close about him. As though the fine, stained cloth might aid him against an ice age. Or was it his recent ordeal that had rose the hairs on his skin.

    The winged demon brandished her strong, blanched arms, from which collossal wings tumbled, like tapered pennants. She threw her head back inhaling with vehemence and drew herself some few inches into air so that the might of her curved talons touched to score the stone floor as she approached her chick.

    "She killed you not," the room drew in about her slow advance, as though she summoned the walls to her train like slaves. The chamber's contents vanished behind the veil of the beast in all of her gloom-ridden spotlight, a black hole beyond where Shytha's teeth crested the gape of her extended grin. "Others have been not so fortunate," the Familiar observed, pointedly.

    "Fortunate .." Drest took the word from it's shelf and held it up to regard it with new understanding. He found little new wonder about it's charms however. "I was that close ..." he grieved, shoulders slumping.

    "Yes," she agreed with him, albeit from a point vague in nature. "You came very close,. .." Shytha's eyes churned like a starless night, ruptured by oil clouds. "Too close ..." she whispered, and stalled at the foot of his bed. "You almost destroyed all that she, one of the mightiest in all the Coven has worked for .." the demon reminisced, and then tilted her head, and drawled with more emphasis ... "Without even trying ...."

    Drest closed both his fists, planting the yellowed beds of his own claws into the soft flesh of calloused palms.

    "Imagine if I had been trying .." the Caster caught what he thought was the demon's point and drew his eyes up slowly to equal her own unblinking stare. "What might I have accomplished ..."

    Despite a vast adolescence of 'guidance', still the mortal was unreadied for the unbridled scream which Shytha expelled from the pits of her displeasure. Flattened back against the bed frame, the sorceror scowled to hear her assure him that .."You are very trying .."

    "Shall there never come a day though, when my triumphs for the Coven are not viewed as a threat to that same ?" the Sorceror begrudged. "I can not right the name of Stoneclaw if our Queen suspects me of treachery whenever I push initiative. Yet have I not done as much as has any here, to prepare for what shall come ?"

    "More," the demon recognised. "Because you seek to resurrect the infamy of your clan, in wake of your sister's ... desertion."

    "You would condemn me for blotting out her craven abandonment behind a new rage of blood and accomplishment" Drest threw the bed covers from him and both saw them crumple in a futile gesture between them. "I achieved what none other has dared ! I spoke, and men followed, and I led my people from the grasp of Orcs ... to what ? To rejection ! Had I not roused them from their holes, the Ice Queen would still not have had them for her ranks nonetheless !" Liberated from all audience now but his keeper, the Caster felt confident enough to speak what would have meant his death to have made public. "That Orc was harvesting their lives to take as foodstuffs for the Werewolves. Why think you that there was a Moot of the Clans at all ? They could stay not as they were. They would have all been killed."

    Shytha raised the bed, and he upon it, by the shake of her great hands upon its frame. The structure hit back to the floor soon after and Drest was free to retract his fingers from where they had pierced the mattress on instinct.

    "Well ?" he craved the words to better comprehend her clear objection.

    "You did not go to Angmar for the clans," she orchestrated waves of lecture, like a smashed window pane, hoping that might be some small sliver of glass, of comprehension, might find its way to his mind. "You went for the purchase of Elves .. "

    "I went for Bella" he protested, instinctively. And found the fiend unmoved. "I shall not cease until I find a means to seize immortality from Elvish subjects. Then her malady shall bear no adverse affect on me. We can be together .. Forever. Unstoppable .. "

    "Once the Witchqueen's war is achieved, you shall drip with a choice of the First born to make toys of," came sound reminder. "I have no wish to watch another ally fall for the sake of impatience."

    "I do not recall your looking to dissuade me from our little excursion in Angmar," Drest provoked.

    "I weary of you not heeding my counsel," the familiar intoned, nonchalant. "And thought it wise to keep you from hurting my feelings if we had shared words on another fool proposal. That would have been ... Inconvenient." Shytha clacked her fell nails together, and it seemed that she sheared fingers of serrated blade to sharper point. "I am expected to keep you alive after all ..." she stared, long, hard and loomed in like a sure brewing storm. The threat, for all the silk of its delivery caught in the Sorceror's reception. It tasted like a spiders web of thorns had caught during digestion and tore at his insides.

    "You let me do my will," he realised, refusing the shiver that licked his limbs. The back of his neck. "You knew what would happen, what She would do to ...."

    Dark hair danced as the winged demon shrugged. She turned her head then and inspected the extension of one wing a time, bored.

    "Well what am I to now ?!!" Stoneclaw demanded. "After all that .."

    "Recall the boy," hissed the proposal. "Thairrim. He was correct on one matter," Shytha allowed, calmly ignoring the scowl that infected her charge. Her words, like her hawk eyes, penetrated his whole and denied him any liberation from the answer he so sought. Already the Sorceror looked to roll his eyes, unconvinced. "As were you," she placated enough to hold his attention. "It is true that in Angmar many egos abound and the factions of differing breed squabble for dominance, some to the point of nigh extermination if left to themselves. The fact of the Orc using your folk to keep the Wolves from his own door should have been enough symptom to suggest that the Iron Queen was gone. Amarthel Delgaran was not a one to suffer such dissension in her ranks. You require a child's confirmation to recognise such a point ?!"

    Shytha licked her lips to the point of gloss, two perfect isles of congealed, black blood to emphasise the white incisors that peered from behind their wall.

    "But Thairrim said that Angmar requires unity," the whispers throbbed further through Drest's brow as Shytha cocked her head. "It does. And that will never be achieved unless we all of every which kind worship before the idol of just one almighty sovereign."

    "One such as this Ice Queen ?" Drest scoffed his disdain. "I have heard not of her until now. How legendary can she be ?"

    "Your clansmen in Angmar had not heard of the Witchqueen" he was reminded. "Does that make her any less potent ?" Shytha poked the Caster's tender arm, meaningfully. "If Amarthel has turned her efforts Southward, then we must pity the Southerners who surely shall fall at her hands," the whisper narrated conspiracy. "The North though is our war. And the Witchqueen is not yet ready to reveal her full strength. Elseways she would not have known such anger at the ... 'Elvish incident'. If she had already mastered her potential, she would have cared not. Her time shall come. Always the forces of the Shadow require a show of strength. A leader. It shall not be you ... "

    "I would have seen the hill clans rise in their own right," he sulked.

    "And draw all of the attention of the Free people's onto one portion of our strength ? And be the primary target of all their allied wrath ? That is not the way," the demon leant back against the closed door and waited for her student to make grade.

    "You are saying that we let this Icy pretender gather all Angmar to her, and watch all the Freeps assault her ?" Drest explored the curved nock of his jaw and nuzzled fingers against his wire beard. "Knowing we would fall to anarchy without her leadership else. But, then, when they kill her ... the time shall be ripe for the Witchqueen to snake out of the shadows; when our foes are already wearied from fighting her predecessor ...."

    Drest caught the apparent moral and the underlying smile which split the Winged Demon's jaw in twain.

    "Rest now a time," Shytha beat out her fanfare of fell wings and pinioned the Sorceror to his sheets. "Else rest for all time if you should rise before you are ready," she concluded her smooth suggestion with an underlying promise of his most untimely end.

    Before he closed eyes, she was swallowed by the gloom of twilight. Gutthard too, was dead to the world.

    But not Shytha of the great wings and grave intention. She scoured the plaza of Min Colvarn, hunting for the boy, Thairrim. And little escaped the keen eyes of the air demon. She perched upon a low wall and fell to a scouting state, watching, and waiting for him to be (doubtless) flung out of the Camlost homestead.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 08/Jul/2016 at 07:42 AM. Reason: Typos

  7. Ercassie's Avatar
    Arwen
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    #7

    Long ago, not far away (2)

    'If you dig under my feet,
    you will find things that you don't want to see
    Things that I hide, deep down inside.
    A menagerie of the tragedy that I've caused
    and all of my flaws, and my demons

    Oh, if you'd seen, what would you do ?
    If you only knew ..
    '

    (Terrible Things, April Smith



    "Guy" and "Raisa"
    The Lone Lands
    Twenty years ago, approx

    She carried the low hum of some forgotten verse as though it might be noticed over the relentless howl of the wind. Still the wild tempest made a percussion band out of the wooden shutters. The walls of meagre shelter peeled from their holdings, easing with great screams toward the promise of unrestrained liberation. It was a storm that might blow the very house to naught. She might have cared more, had it been her house. But as things stood, it would suffice, so long as it stood out the night.

    Raisa closed her eyes, caressing the fussing infant against the small warmth of her exhasted body. And she rocked. As though it were the lap of a proper-made rocking chair that she had nested in. It was not. But one foot upon the creaking floorboards served as a durable anchor, and she was not quite so tired to let the momentum betray her balance.

    The baby's fussing fell from fitful siren to sluggish peace. She stroked his small head with a calm, rotating palm that turned his sparse wisps of hair. Finally. Eventually. He was soothed. As though his mother's peaceful state had managed to convince him that the storm beyond their tiny sanctuary would be kept at bay.

    "We can't stay," her conscience, her Guy, broke into her thoughts, and Raisa opened one eye, creasing her brow.

    "Shhh now," she cooed at the baby, and closed her eye anew, as though she might similarly close her ears to the truth. "Sleep easy," Her dark hair fell across the very question. "What else would we do ?" she asked of the unconscious bundle, rather than address her lover directly. "We would freeze to death out there. He ... would freeze to death .." She shook her head to dispel the long curling tendril and all doubt of her decision also.

    "And what when them as own this place come back ? And find us .. ? No," the Man pushed brown hair back across his scalp with a strong hand. "This ain't right. Love .. it's wrong." He peered through the wood's eye of a boarded window, and scanned the scene for any sign of the house's owners.

    "I am not going to watch our child die, because you're worried about manners !" Raisa hissed. "Noone's out in all that tempest. Whatever sorry soul lays their head here is not here now. They'll have hunkered down some place else. And we'll be gone ever before they get back."

    Guy set a chair up against the window, so as he could spy anyone heading up toward them. His name was not Guy, any more than Raisa was the true alias of his long-time companion. But she had liked the sound of the name she'd gifted herself. And as he was equally as unable to recall his own identity, she had took to calling him 'Guy', until he had took to it as habit of his own.

    The reality of course was that they could not pass up such an opportunity as the small shack. Notwithstanding the cold, and the rain .. they had walked so far that their shoes could scarce be described as such any more. And if they had learnt one thing about the Lone Lands, it was that you never were truly alone. There were all types of folks out there, though you might see them not until it was far too late. Folks just as much in need and sure just as desperate. And just as likely thus to come across this very small residence.

    He was not a fighter, not like Raisa. She was the one who kept them alive. Ever since they had found one another, equally oblivious. Rumour had it that some bandit was gifting folk the water of Mirkwood's enchanted River. Once the victim had passed out, all their possessions were ripe for the plucking. Coin, weapons, clothes ... The Man had been lost of all, and robbed of his memory besides that. He must have drunk an awful lot of that sorcerous water ! Raisa had come across him, half drowned in the Midgewater Marshes, scarce able to form words, let alone recollect how to walk. She had taken care of him. She had taught him all he now was proud to count he knew.

    She said that without his pleasant company, she would have done herself in long ago. So years they had spent as a pair. No direction but to keep on moving. Things never worked out too long in any place. People weren't keen on vagrants. The homeless couple were hurried on, as though they were bandits. Or worse.

    The night raged on, a vicious battle of the sky. It hurled misfortune with great sheets of rain across the land. It beat against the backs of those exasperated bandits who had trudged far distance in the starkest conditions. Their thoughts were as a whole upon their little shack, where they might hole up, with what swag they had not lost along treacherous paths.

    Tonight nothing would stop the great determined furrows that they beat through the pale lashes of grass. They were coming home. A fire was already burning in their modest hearth. The first eyes to acknowledge this put halt to their small procession. And quickened pace.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 24/Nov/2016 at 10:33 PM.

  8. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
    Guard of the Lone Lands
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    #8

    Strawberry
    Traveling along an isolated stretch of road


    A young girl traveled along the road, alone, wearing boy's clothing, and carrying a pack. She could be mistaken for younger than she was, due to her short stature, and she might also appear to be an easy target for some bandit. But looks could be very deceiving, which happens to be the case with this girl.

    Strawberry kept at a pace that was sustainable for a long time, not too brisk but not so slow as to take her a long time to get anywhere. She also kept a wary eye on the sides of the road. She wasn't new to this traveling thing, and knew there could easily be any number of dangers lurking in the wilds. She wasn't really sure where this road would lead to, but she figured wherever it took her, she would rest in whatever town it was, before moving on. Unless the town proved dangerous, then she would just steal whatever she needed or whatever she could, then avoid the town and keep moving.

    A brief movement in the shadows of the trees alerted her to the possible danger a moment before men jumped out of the forest to surround her. She stopped walking and stood still, tense and ready for the fight she figured was about to happen. One of the bandits..for that's what they must be.. stepped forward with a slight smirk on his face.
    "Sorry miss, there's a price to pay, if you want to travel on this road." He informed her, patting the hilt of his sword as if to explain what would happen if she didn't pay their toll. She frowned and glanced around at them, counting their numbers. Unless she counted wrong, there were sixteen of them, counting the leader. She didn't think she could possibly fight all them. But what other choice did she have?

    One thing she had learned in her travels was that some people could be intimidated, while others were better at intimidating others. She knew that was these bandit's game; to intimidate travelers into paying their toll. But she wouldn't let herself be intimidated by these guys. She folded her arms - subtly gripping the handle to two daggers which she had concealed - and stared back at the bandit's leader.

    "I'm not paying any toll. And I suggest you move out of my way." Her tone was cold and hard, as she hoped to give him the idea that maybe she wasn't someone to trifle with. The bandit's smirk widened, and he exchanged looks with some of the others. The ones nearest to Strawberry drew their weapons, and instantly she had followed suit. She stood in a fighting strance, weilding two long daggers, and gazing at the men with narrowed eyes.

    "I'm giving you one last chance girl.. pay coin, or pay with your life..your choice." The bandit threatened her. Strawberry shook her head.
    "Don't understand Westron too well, do you? I said I'm not paying. I also said you'd better move out of my way." She said in an equally threatening tone.

    "Your choice, then." He stepped back and motioned to the others. Three bandits jumped forward, attacking her all at the same time. Strawberry swiftly dropped her pack to the ground and ducked under one guy's arm, which resulted in two men's swords hitting that man, and his sword impaled one of them. She spun just in time to block another two swords, and kicked one of the guys in the crotch and ducked a slash that would have beheaded her. Three other guys were moving in from behind her, and she spun to the side to avoid the sword of the man in front of her who attempted to impale her. His sword caught the middle of the three men who had been coming behind her, and then another man grabbed her around the waist, intending to hold her there while the others killed her or something. But he didn't anticipate her stabbed him in the side, having turned one dagger around in her hand and stabbed backward at him.

    She dodged to one side to avoid a slash from another bandit, but wasn't fast enough to prevent her arm catching the blade slightly. She winced but then saw an opportunity, as the man was caught off balance a little when his weapon didn't hit where he intended it. She swiftly brought the number down to eleven when she stabbed his back. She backed up as she saw a slight opening, and stood facing them brandishing her daggers, as she gave them a moment to see if they might change their minds. Maybe after seeing her kill four of their guys, they might decide not to mess with her any further. She was actually a little surprsed she had managed not to get any more injury than a graze on the arm.

    Unfortunately they seemed to think that eleven of them could still beat her, and they were probably right. Her brief moment of rest was enough to catch her breath. The men seemed to hesitate just briefly, but their leader ordered them to kill her, and in seconds Strawberry found herself fighting for her life again. The first man to come at her, she ducked under his attack and stabbed him swiftly in the ribs while his arm was outstretched in an attempt to slash her. Then she brought both knives up in an X to block a downslash of another sword, and followed with a kick to the man's groin area. She finished him with a slash across the throat before turning to face the next opponent, but wasn't quite fast enough to avoid a blow to the torso from the man's fist.

    She staggered back several steps, as the man was quite strong and despite how strong Strawberry might be, she was still a small girl and a powerful punch like that was bound to knock her back a few steps. Gasping a little for breath, she parried a sword aimed at her chest, and ducked another sword that might have cut her ear off, or worse. As it was, it merely nicked her jaw a little as she ducked out of the way. One man grabbed her arm and slammed her into a nearby tree. She winced as the impact knocked the breath out of her even more, and she barely ducked in time to avoid decapitation. The bandit who attempted it, instead, got his sword's blade stuck in the tree bark where her neck had been moments before. Strawberry quickly dodged around the tree when the other men tried to come after her, and considered running. But she wouldn't leave her pack, it had everything she needed in it.. everything she owned. And there was that crystal thing that she had been guarding for quite some time. She mustn't let anyone else get their hands on that.

    Just as she was thinking of that, she heard the bandit leader yell at his men. She briefly glanced at him, and saw that he had grabbed her pack from where it was dropped on the ground, and was motioning for the men to retreat since they had the bag. The men, glad to leave before any more of them were killed, ran to follow their leader, but Strawberry wasn't about to accept this. She ran after them as fast as she could, which was pretty fast, and jumped at the bandit that was running away with her bag, landing on his back and pressing one of her knives to his throat.
    "Drop it, now." She demanded, intending only to threaten him so that he would give back her pack, but if she was forced to she would continue to fight them.

    But her threat wasn't quite so effective as she had intended, as the man grabbed her arm and pried her knife away from his throat. Another man grabbed her by both arms and pulled her off of the leader, while others moved to help hold her back. She gritted her teeth and tried to yank her arms free, squirming and kicking at the men who tried to hold her still. The bandit leader felt of his throat to find out if he was bleeding, and saw a little blood from the scratch on his throat. He glared at Strawberry, then approached her, pointing his sword at her, while she struggled to break free from the other guys.

    ((
    OOC: If anyone would like to join her, feel free to jump in, maybe come to the rescue. If no one wants to jump in, she'll get out of it on her own and be fine. There are nine bandits left, including the leader))

  9. Aranadhel's Avatar
    Fletcher of Lothlorien
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    #9


    Nyarane
    Maethor
    Rivendell Guard

    -Continuation from the Ettenmoors RPG with Ercassie-



    One Enemy down, more arrives.


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Moments earlier-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Rane charged blindly into the woods and slashed and parried at the second Warg she'd caught a glimpse of a few seconds before she had killed the first Warg with her arrow. The Warg proved deadly efficient at maintaining a good retreat, not once getting jabbed or pierced by Rane's sword attack. The blonde elleth strode ever forward, not caring if she would be ambushed by other Wargs in the vicinity. Coward! she hissed at the Warg and jumped forward, somersaulting in the air and landing perfectly at the rear of the abominable wolf.

    The Warg immediately turned to face her and and then lunged at Rane with its jaws wide agape. Rane's blue eyes widened in horror at the sudden attack and she'd managed to shift her balance slightly to her left but alas she was not fast enough as the Warg bit into her leather vambrace ferociously with murder intent in its yellow eyes. She'd let out a silent scream, the pain too much to bear like piercing knives embedded into her left slender arm but her reflex took over immediately and with her free sword hand she turned her wrist to a 45 degree angle and shoved the sword straight in between the eyes of the Warg as the sound of cracking skull and spluttered brain and the smell of both her blood and the Warg's permeated her nostrils. The Warg was dead instantly but the jaw locked onto the Elf's arm and heavy now as the body dangled in mid-air supported by Rane's weight. She then was on her knees instantly, the heavy weight of the Warg she could not support much longer. Then she extracted the sword from the Warg's skull, albeit feeling a little dazed and lightheaded already and sliced clean it's neck from the body like a knife thru butter. Rane looked away as she laid down her sword and with a single motion using her right hand she wrestled free the jaws of
    the Warg from her now steadily bleeding arm. She sighed in heavy relief but instantly was on alert again when she saw in her peripheral vision another Warg approaching stealthily from the east. Before she could think of challenging it, it lay dead pierced by Tirindo's arrow.

    Rane stood up, clutching her left arm close to her hips and nodded in acknowledgement at her superior. Then she heard a yell in the distance to her south-west. It sounded hostile and her warrior's instinct took over again despite her being injured and she quickly crouched to pick up her sword and ran towards the source of the noise.

    Lo and behold what greeted her was a big surprise. Her eyes took in four bodies on the ground and what looked like a Mortal young girl being surrounded by 9 Men. She stepped closer and made her presence known.

    Halt in the name of the High Elves of Rivendell!
    She said out loud in Westron. Her left arm still she kept close to her hips lest they saw she was bleeding but her sword arm Rane hoisted up to the sky so the Noldorin sword glimmered under the sun to let them know who they were dealing with. She looked carefully at each and every one of the bandits. Release the girl to me and drop your weapons for you are now surrounded! She lied outright to their faces. She did not want to kill these ruffians if she chose to as they were not a threat like Orcs or Wargs.

    Some of the bandits had crooked smiles on their faces, maybe they were too thick headed to not know of the wrath of the Elves? Rane stepped even closer now, drawing her sword close to her in case some will attack her immediately. Her objective now was to save the Mortal girl. She hoped Tirindo would come quick.

    Are you alright, Child? Rane asked the girl (Strawberry).



    Last edited by Aranadhel; 23/Aug/2016 at 09:53 PM.

  10. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #10


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    Coming from the Ettenmoors
    A mini Guard Adventure


    If ever there was a magnet for trouble, it's name was Nyarane. Thus far the Elves's trek from the valley had seen them spy naught of what they sought. Still, much else they had encountered.

    Keen sight allowed that he appraise the scene before ever following his younger comrade unto the very thick of it. The Mortals did look to be caught up in a dispute, and the sides were far from fair. Still, the lone girl was no easy feat to conquer, as several of the bandits had already observed. In the moment where fortune looked to have forsook Strawberry, in stepped Rane. And apparently a host of Elvish soldiers in her wake.

    Tirindo did not fail to overlook the obvious, that so many bodies falling all about the place, was doubtless what had inspired the hunting, hungry, Wargs to prowl here in the first instance. But theories could await. The Maethor's bold claim required a more timely response.

    It was fortunate that the Authon's approach had some small cover from that miserly copse between the way he had come, and the fiercely disputing Mortals here. The Elf spurred his steed clear of this, and conducted a swift turn, to face Rane's horse back and now down behind him. Out of plain sight.

    "Daro drego dartho tolo !!*" he bade the loyal mount, a smattering of Sindarin that most Mortal travellers would not comprehend. The meaning of this direction was rather mis-direction, after all. For Rane's horse duely pulled up swift, then fled under the sparse cover of mist-garbed trees; only to abruptly halt at his next call and return back; kicking up small clods of earth (and a good bellows of hoofbeat) en route. With any luck, the ruse of such a noise would add to Nyarane's deceit; that the nine Bandits were surrounded by a far greater force than they did in truth. Tirindo rather doubted that a bloodied maiden, fresh from struggles all her own, and quite clearly afoot, might inspire great terror in such a group of weathered Men. They did not know Rane and she did look innocent. To be entirely honest, the greater support that her companion could covertly muster of their 'reinforcements', the better.

    Tirindo turned back in his seat and nodded his accordance stiffly toward Nyarane, even as her unseen horse beat a very bewildered journey back and forth, beyond. But would the boast of sound deceive these brigands' ears ? Or worse? Their minds ?

    The Archer rallied his bow to hand and calmly introduced an arrow to the string. "Ready a volley," he told the imaginary army of Elves, unnecessarily loudly. This time choosing to speak in deliberate, if accented, Westron. He had not spent so much time amongst the Second-Born as had Nyarane. And hoped he had not erred upon the circumstances.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 02/Sep/2016 at 07:42 PM.

  11. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #11

    Strawberry - on an isolated stretch of road

    Strawberry tried to tug her arms free but the bandits were holding her tight, probably afraid to let her go. The leader bandit stepped closer, glaring at her. He grabbed her chin and gripped it tightly while moving his blade close to her neck.
    "You, girl, are..." Whatever he was about to say, no one will ever know. Just at that moment, he inhaled sharply and doubled over, giving a rather unmanly sort of squeaking noise with his eyes wide. He stumbled backward and ended up with a hand on the tree and doubled over, trying to recover from the swift knee to the groin that Strawberry had just delivered.

    Now there was the other eight to worry about, and she could tell they were irritated. The ones holding her arms yanked and began trying to drag her off somewhere. Just then, however, a new voice rang out;
    'Halt in the name of the High Elves of Rivendell!' That was about the last thing Strawberry would have expected to hear. Elves? High Elves? The bandits all turned to look and see who had spoken, and Strawberry also looked to see who had come to her rescue. There was a woman there that she had never seen before, but now she was demanding them to release 'the girl' to her and informing them that they were surrounded. As if to prove her words, the sound of horses running around could be heard in the forest, as well as a man's voice calling out to ready a volley. She wondered if that was such a good idea though, since if they shot a volley of arrows at them, Strawberry and the elf woman might get hit too, right?

    But, regardless, the elf woman's appearance provided Strawberry with just the distraction she needed to break free of the bandits holding her arms. While they were distracted by the unexpected interference from the elf, Strawberry spun to one side and kicked one of the men in the knee, hard enough that it made his leg buckle under him. Something may have broken in his leg, or possibly his knee out of joint, but she didn't stop to wonder about it. The other man was turning toward her, reaching to grab her again, but she sidestepped and grabbed his arm, twisting it sharply in a way that made him unable to get free of her, then with her other hand she stuck her knife in his ribs and shoved him into the sword of the next guy who was coming after her, which tripped him up for a moment, enough that she could focus on the one who was on the ground with a busted knee. He grabbed her ankle and she got tripped.

    Now on the ground, Strawberry didn't even bother taking the time to get up, and instead she twisted around and used his grip on her ankle to her advantage, maneuvering around so that his arm was at an uncomfortable angle and he was forced to release her, and she leaned a bit of her weight on it until he yelped in pain..a little more pressure and his arm would be broken in a few places. Some of the bandits were looking nervous about the elves surrounding them, but one of them moved to try and grab Strawberry to help his friend, while another two, after hesitating, apparently decided that the threat of being surrounded was fake, and moved toward the elf woman with intention of grabbing her.

    ((
    If you'd like an example of the kind of fighting moves she uses, check out aikito and imagine her doing it with a dagger in her hand that she uses as well. Keep in mind that her technique needs improvement.))
    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 25/Aug/2016 at 05:39 AM.

  12. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #12


    Nyarane
    Maethor
    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle

    Settling a Skirmish



    Rane's heart fluttered like a butterfly when she heard of Tirindo's arrival and the ruse that was laid out by the ellon. Clever! She said to herself. Getting no response from the Mortal girl had sent a big question mark on the elleth's mind but having seen the 4 dead bodies she could only assume it was the work of the Mortal. Rane stepped even closer to the ring, her long sword dangling in the air like a cobra waiting to strike.

    Rane did not get far though as the Mortal girl rolled the dice quicker by subduing her captors and the Elf's eyes widened in fascination at the speed of the girl's attack to neutralize the Men. Rane gave a quick shout Leitho i philin! and made quick work of 2 Men to her right who was bold enough to challenge her. Rightly so.

    The first she punched on the face with her injured left arm and she turned and gave him a back-kick on his throat which left him flying, while the second after Rane had landed on the ground she head-butted, not once but twice and the Man fell like a log. Rane had decided not to kill them yet as the priority was still to save the Mortal girl and when she looked again the girl (Strawberry) was on the ground. Good.

    Rane gave a quick shout in Westron to her. Stay down! Arrows are flying now! Rane's distraction left her position vulnerable as she was then grabbed from behind by a burly Man who pinned both her arms with his and he made a 180 degree turn before tossing her into the air and Rane flew like an arrow thru the sky and crash landed into another Man. The elleth stayed down only momentarily, now her anger lighting up her fea and she quickly grabbed hold of her sword and barrel-rolled towards the nearest Man and slashed his knee to bring him to ground.

  13. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #13


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    Interfering in an altercation
    A mini Guard Adventure

    Grey eyes narrowed, even polished to a pristine lustre, they set hard upon the scene. Tirindo had awarded the varmints opportunity to retreat with their pride intact. Better for a troupe of grown men to flee the risk of a host of Elvish archers, after all. Better that than to admit they had been bested largely by a small and spritely duo. Which is exactly what happened next. The Elf sighed and that sheet of midnight that hung from his head as hair, it shivered. He had hoped to see the fools proved coward, although it might be argued that so many outnumbering a mortal youth was cowardly enough. Until he considered that youth itself. Much like Nyarane, this 'helpless child' looked far from helpless. Might be that the Men had known what they were doing after all. Which begged the obvious; that whatever was happening before him, it was more than it may seem. The Noldo frowned, disliking surprises. He should have known better, riding out with Rane. Wild, that one was. Her new friend seemed likewise.

    Rane called for the promised volley and bade that the 'victim (?)' should stay low. But there was of course no actual volley. Which did not mean to say there flew no arrows. And what impact was lost in quantity, more than was compensated by quality. That it should be the Men's lucky day, there was not in fact an entire volley, so ably directed. Few arrows would and did suffice. This Elf had served under Lord Duilin, of the House of Swallow, ages past. And centuries of practice did lend some assistance to already keen eyes and calm focus.

    Tirindo's first arrow caught the bandit leader through one hand, pinning that enraged Man to the tree he'd leaned on after Strawberry had groined him. Agony blossomed across the Man's face, and spread like a contagious disease unto another, unto the Man who was looking to retrieve their prize, or to retrieve the bag they'd dropped. The second missile sailed into the Man's waist, off centre, and threw him into a spin of bellowing surprise. His closed fist impacted with the Man Nyarane had headbutted, and both of them fell over one another (or else took belated cover from the promised volley). Suddenly, with arrows actually finding flesh amongst them, the Elf's threat had evolved from a suspected plot of desperation toward real and dire danger.

    Rane's horse noted that instructions for her to play false had now fallen still, and so promptly fell in beside the mounted Authon. Tirindo himself observed the zealous beast, quite literally chomping at the bit to tear after her mistress. The Elf nodded once, lowered his bow and set them both at a great pace to cut through the remaining pack of brigands.

    The two horses thundered toward the scene of unsettled disarray, and circled the crawling, groaning Men herding those unhappy fellows closer together. There was not a one unscathed from one direction or another. To ensure this, Tirindo sat proud in his seat and surveyed the mess from on high, a distinctly unimpressed expression shifting his classical features.

    He awaited an attempt at some explanation, as he lowered his great bow and hooked up the bag that they had all been fighting over. It fell easily into the High Elf's lap, and one hand kept it out of everybody else's reach.

    "Who is in charge here ?" he demanded in thickly-accented Westron. "That is to say, which of you believed yourself to be in charge until a moment ago ?"

    Those same metallic eyes narrowed again, the second time in less than ten minutes. "Pick yourself up, Maethor," he managed to retain a sure tone as he checked that his comrade was well.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 02/Sep/2016 at 07:42 PM.

  14. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #14

    Strawberry - Isolated stretch of road


    Strawberry
    heard one of the bandits call out, "Are you all crazy? Them elves have us surrounded!" But not all of them seemed to believe it. She watched the elf woman take down two bandits, and then she was surprised to hear her speak in her own language and tell her to stay down because of arrows. She didn't really want to keep the guy pinned down like this though, so she reached with one hand and did a simple pinch on a particular point on the shoulder/neck area, which knocked him out. She let go of him and glanced quickly around. His buddy had been coming, after getting tripped up by the guy she had thrown into his path, and after shoving the dead man off of him he continued toward her. Strawberry looked up just in time to see him coming toward her, aiming a slash at her that might have hit her neck. She ducked quickly and avoided the blow, then he spotted her pack and realized he'd be much better off just taking it than trying to kill the girl.

    As he ran for her pack, Strawberry started to get up and run after him but found that her leg was sort of trapped. Then she remembered the female elf saying to stay down, and she glanced around but saw no elves in the forest surrounding the road. That didn't mean they weren't there, though. One of the men had dropped a shield, so as a precaution, Strawberry grabbed that and held it up to hopefully protect herself from the 'volley' of arrows that had been promised. When only about two arrows came, she cautiously peeked over the edge of the shield, and relaxed once it seemed there wouldn't be any more to come.

    The man who had gone for her pack had taken an arrow to the waist, and she couldn't help feeling glad that she had not run after him, after all. Strawberry looked around and saw that the bandit leader had been shot in the hand, and she didn't actually see any other damage from arrows. However, she kept very still as two horses came running through. She didn't want to get trampled, after all. The few bandits who were still alive, and able to stand, moved in closer and put their hands up in surrender. Strawberry cast her gaze quickly about the area looking for her bag. She nearly panicked when it wasn't still where it had been, fearing that one of the bandits had taken off with it. But then she saw it held up, in the hand of a new elf who sat mounted on a horse.

    As he demanded to know who had been in charge, the bandits were silent for a moment before pointing to the man pinned to a tree by his bleeding hand. He instantly denied being in charge, probably fearing that he would get the worst punishment for it. He tried to insist that one of the dead men was their leader, but Strawberry had a feeling the elves weren't going to believe that. And if they did, she would gladly set them straight on the matter. But she wondered what was going to happen with the bandits who were still alive. And more importantly, how was she going to get her bag back from that elf? Was he taking it? If he did, maybe she could follow them or travel with them, then steal it back once they fell asleep or something...

    ((
    Of the nine bandits, the leader is pinned by an arrow, one is unconscious with a busted knee, one got stabbed in the ribs and then impaled, one got kicked in the throat and is probably done fighting for a long while, one got headbutted and then shot in the waist, probably dead. One Rane crashed into, another she slashed his knee. By my count, that leaves 2 that are left standing))

  15. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #15


    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle



    Skirmish Settled




    The Man cried out in agony and crumpled to the floor like sawdust as his slashed knees rendered him crippled. Nyarane crouched still as the horses thundered into the skirmish and arrows flew left and right. Another cry or two was heard and she turned to see a gruesome sight of another Man who got pinned to the tree thanks to Tirindo's sharp shooting.

    Two Men stood their ground still but Tirindo's horse blocked her from making any advance on them. She narrowed her blue eyes at him as he chided her to compose herself. She rose majestically and wiped the dust from her tunic and had the grace to look away in shame from his keen eyes and she wished in that moment that her Master was around to comfort her so. She then looked in the direction of Strawberry and followed the Mortal girl's focus of the bag that was now held aloft by Tirindo. Nyarane cared not for what valuables lay hidden in that bag and she instead walked towards the Man that was pinned to the tree.

    With one swift motion Nyarane released the arrow clean from both tree and flesh and the cry for mercy this time felt more genuine as the Man now lay sobbing, kneeling by the tree. The elleth was not easily fooled nor sympathize with Evil Men. Her historical lessons with Ar-Pharazon's Numenoreans and the Evil Men of Rhudaur were two very painful lessons she will never forget til the Earth's breaking.

    Nyarane lifted her sword and had the tip of it lightly linger at the Man's breathing throat. Speak, vermin before I gut you like a pig! She ordered in Westron. Lie to me even one bit and I will not only slice out your tongue like a sausage on a spit but I will also gore out both your eyes and then you'd wished you were dead. She added with an icy tone.

    She kept her eyes on the Man but then spoke softly to Tirindo in Quenyan for safety measures. Search the bag. That young girl must hold something precious in it. Her eyes has never wavered from your position. Do it now before my patience run out. The elleth said haughtily to the older ellon.
    Last edited by Aranadhel; 28/Aug/2016 at 09:18 PM.

  16. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #16


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    Interfering in an altercation
    A mini Guard Adventure


    A sorry flock to tend, the Noldo might have sighed aloud. For this unkempt diversion now would cause them some decision, of the Mortals' fate. Tirindo was not of a keen mind to execute those who were not already taken unto death. Danger though should not be left unleashed, and crimes should not go unpunished. Were they two deserving to play judgement on a situation that they little understood ?

    "Sit those who are able on the ground," he bade the survivors, "with both your hands upon your heads. We mean you no needless cruelty, but I warn you, test our kindness and receive our tempers in return."

    Nyarane looked to have the leader in hand, he observed, impressed. And certain she had more instinct than he to conduct an interrogation; not to mention better grasp upon the Human speech. Tirindo could only hope that the Humans understood most of his bold verbal efforts. Rane had taught him of course, what language she felt would suffice, but he had known little opportunity before now to make actual use of the skill.

    "If you have some valid cause for near a score of you to set upon a single child, best you speak up now," he (hopefully) made a pointed suggestion to the wretched man, holding out his hand from where he gazed down, that Rane might return his arrow. He realised her bloodied arm but made no mention of that injury aloud. She looked in no danger of passing out of consciousness; whereas making known a weakness of theirs before even a bowed/cowed foe would be folly. With an approving nod, he gave her rein to proceed. Let her question the leader. Maybe they had seen the missing Elf scout that these pair sought for ? But to lead that line of questioning would invite dubious and false information. If the Humans had seen a solitary Elf scout on their paths, they would offer it, without the need for prompting. Could the Elfguards be that lucky ? It was doubtful.

    Turning over the arrow in one hand, he was glad they had required not to waste too many of their resources upon a matter so unexpected. Though the safeguarding of life and the maintaining of some peace in lawless lands was always a boon to their missive. The cause of the chaos though remained a mystery.

    "What of you ?" the Elf found ground beneath him as he swung his leg to liberate his horse. Recalling his comrade's hint about the child's interest, he eyed Strawberry, and then glanced back to the bag. Then toward the child again. "Shall we hear only from your opponents ?" he wondered. "My friend has risked her life to preserve yours. What sentence would you inflict on these Men, if given the choice now ?" he wondered. Strawberry did not seem hurt, or so his Elvish eyes suggested. A slight glance of steel had sliced at her chin, but she did not look frightened to him.

    The bag he swung over one shoulder, the one opposite to that which wore his quiver, and loitered, with bow in hand, to gauge the level of the child's want for either. A thought to conduct a thorough search of all, for concealed weapons occurred to him. Might be belatedly.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 02/Sep/2016 at 07:43 PM.

  17. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #17

    Strawberry - Isolated Stretch of Road

    The bandit leader's scream of pain drew Strawberry's attention and she glanced over to see him hugging his bleeding hand close to his chest, and kneeling on the ground and begging mercy from the elves. She narrowed her eyes a bit at him but glanced back at the elf who held her bag up. Was he trying to take it for himself? She looked again at the elf woman, making threats to the bandit leader to make him talk. Yeah, like he was going to admit to his crimes? Only a moron would do..
    "Alright! Just don't..don't make good on any of those threats, m'lady..I'll tell you what happened.."
    ..that. She almost couldn't believe it. She absently wiped at what she thought was sweat on her jaw, and saw redness come away on her hand. Oh, so she was bleeding, not sweating. Well she was sweating too, but the blood was something to worry about, a little anyway. She noticed a splotch of red on her upper arm as well, but as it didn't seem to hinder her ability to fight, she wasn't terribly worried about it. She thought her ribs seemed a bit sore still but she knew she'd be fine, in that regard. Having done a quick assessment of her injuries, which were minimal, she sheathed her daggers and attempted to stand up. But she felt a bit of pain in one leg and decided that she should probably try to figure out what was holding her down, there might be a blade resting on her leg and if she moved too much she might cut herself worse, and she'd rather not do that.

    .."Sit those who are able on the ground, with both your hands upon your heads." She heard, and looked back at the elf as she heard him say this. She wondered if that included her. She was already on the ground, but did she really have to put her hands on her head? She decided she probably wasn't included in that, and tried her best to look like an innocent little girl while trying to free her leg. Then she heard what the bandit leader was telling the elf woman.
    "That girl..she's no innocent child, she stole that bag from one of my men and when we tried to get it back, she attacked us and began to kill us. I swear, lady elf, we all were merely trying to defend ourselves!" He looked up at her as if pleading for her to believe him.

    This of course infuriated Strawberry, and she managed to shove off the body of the bandit who had been pinning her. She had a bit of a cut on her leg, and found that she limped a slight bit, but didn't pay any attention to that now.
    "That's a lie!" She interjected before he could say anything more. Her hands were in fists, and she was very angry that he would say such lies. She was not going to let them twist things around to make her into the one to be punished! She pointed an accusing finger at the bandit leader. "These men are bandits. I was just walking along the road minding my own business, and they tried to make me pay a fee to them, to pass through here, and when I refused, they tried to kill me." She glared at them, putting her hands on her hips. "And when they found I was not so easy to kill, they tried to take off with everything I own..." Speaking of, she turned toward the male elf and frowned. "And that's mine." She added, indicating the pack he was holding, seemingly carelessly over his shoulder.

    ((
    She has taken a punch to the ribs, a graze on the arm , nick on the jaw, and a few bruises and scrapes))

  18. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #18




    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle


    The Missing Link




    Nyarane handed back the arrow to Tirindo using her injured left arm whilst her eyes averted not from the bandit's face. She bit her lips from laughing at Tirindo's heavily accented Westron as he'd addressed both the bandits and the Mortal girl. Well at least the Mortals understood his speech, she laughed in her mind.

    The elleth heard both parties make their pleas and instantly knew what to do next. Without warning Nyarane released the tip of her sword from under his chin and kneed the bandit's face. He shouted in anguish at the sudden surprise but he never recovered from the shock as Nyarane then grabbed his tousled greasy hair using her left hand and dragged his feet and plopped his body next to Strawberry as though he weighed little, such is the hidden strength of the Firstborn for both genders.

    Liar! She shouted and spit at his sorry face on the ground. She glanced at the two still standing bandits and pointed at them with her sword hand. Did you not hear what my comrade had said? Get down now with your hands in the air! She was fuming now at the idiots who looked at her with clueless faces. It was only then she'd realized that both of these bandits looked somewhat taller and grimmer than the rest of the bandits. It reminded her of the Dunedain, but they had an evil scent about them. Black Numenoreans! She said out loud in Westron.

    Nyarane automatically changed her speech to Adunaic, the original language of the Numenoreans. What brings you both so far North from Umbar, my fell friends? She now closed ranks on them both, they'd never moved from their positions till now. Ready your bow, Authon. These Black Numenoreans are more dangerous than the bandits. I suspect they would know of our missing scout. She called out in Quenyan, and added. Search her but make sure the Mortal girl is kept safe. Do not give her the bag yet.

    Nyarane was now a breadth's space away from the two Black Numenoreans. Her sword arm lingered still ready to strike but she kept her peace, for now. What do you both know of a missing Elf scout, hmm? She asked quietly in Adunaic, her tone sounded dangerous to their ears.

  19. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #19


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    Interfering in an altercation
    A mini Guard Adventure


    The Authon's smile was smothered into a firm line, all business, and did not tremble with expression even when the bandit leader amusedly named Rane, 'Lady Elf'. He was not so fool to miss that his efforts of translation were entertaining his young friend. Still, he was doing his best to keep up with all the conversation. Recalling the nature of words to have Mortals understand him was one matter. Comprehending in return their wild outpouring of answers caused him to require concentration. It made his brow set to appear even more serious than usual.

    Still even he could recognise that both sides of this story were now pleading their complete and utter innocence. So somebody was lying. Might be then that words were not to be trusted at any rate, and he might well do better to rely upon interpreting their body language, for more than one reason.

    The girl was carrying herself a little cautiously as though testing for damages. Although that blood now staining her sleeve might easily have come from the wounds she inflicted on her foes. Tirindo suspected that she would have walked away from this, even without the Elves' intervention. Though they may well have allowed her to do so a little less worse for wear, by concluding the matter swiftly.

    He decided to look at the irrefutable evidence : both parties wanted the bag. Both parties clearly desired the Elves to leave ... Their clear hostility and frustration rang out more than even the fear that Nyarane was instilling amongst them.

    The revelation that Black Numenoreans were stood amongst the group confounded him, but there had seemed some quiet dribble of migration northward recently. Rumours sang of shadows growing in the East and South. Unrest was not uncommon nor desertion, when all were demanded to choose sides. Still, if this pair had fled north to escape terror in their homeland, they had not reckoned on a particular Elf warrior Maiden ! The Noldo had absolutely no comprehension of ancient adunaic, so he left them in the Maethor's charge. He was not ready to discount the others as 'harmless'.

    Calmly, he swang his stern glare from the bandit leader to the young girl. He let the bag drop from his shoulder to one hand.

    "You each claim possession of this bag," he decided to call both their bluff. "Very well," he spoke slow so there was no chance they misunderstand him. "Each of you two shall name one belonging which is to be found within this bag. I shall check the contents, and we shall know beyond all doubt then which of you is lying to me. So. Speak .. "
    Last edited by Ercassie; 02/Sep/2016 at 07:44 PM. Reason: Typos

  20. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #20

    Strawberry - Isolated stretch of road

    Strawberry
    tensed a bit as the bandit was placed next to her. She didn't like having him near her, but she tolerated it for now at least. She remained standing, while favoring her left leg a little bit. She would look at the wound later but for now it wasn't keeping her from standing and walking so it wasn't that big of a deal. And since these were not orcs or gobins, she didn't suspect that they might have poisoned blades. If she had thought that might be something to worry about, she would check it immediately.

    She watched silently as the female elf yelled at the two bandits who remained standing. She wasn't too sure what significance it made that they were what she called 'black numenorians' but she wasn't very concerned about that. As the elf woman began questioning them, Strawberry turned her attention back to the male elf who had her bag. He was now asking them to prove who the bag belonged to by describing something inside the bag. While she did not like the idea of anyone looking through her bag, she couldn't help an inward smile. Smart guy, apparently. The bandit glanced at her and then back at the bag. Strawberry gave a tiny smile that more resembled a smirk.
    "Oh, do go first." She folded her arms but did not, by any means, let down her guard. He returned the smirk.
    "Ladies first." She knew that he wanted her to go first, so he could copy whatever she said. She shook her head and kept her mouth shut tight, stubbornly waiting to let him go first. He gave her a dark glare before looking up at the elf. "Sir, the bag belonged to my man there, which she has, unfortunately murdered." He gave her an accusing glare. "But I happen to know he had some food and a canteen or two of water, and something of great importance that he wouldn't show to any of us. He was bringing it back to his family." He said. Strawberry rolled her eyes, thinking it seemed obvious he was making an educated guess at what would be found in the bag.

    She was thinking about what to describe from her back. She was absolutely NOT going to tell anyone about the main thing that she was worried about. She didn't think it wise to inform them of her lockpicking set, that might be a bit of a hint that she wasn't so innocent. Not that owning a lockpicking set automatically meant that a person is a thief, but it is a good implication of it. While the bandit was trying to convince the elves that the bag belonged to his deceased buddy, Strawberry thought over everything that was in the bag, and finally when he finished, she had made up her mind. When her turn to speak came, she spoke without any uncertainty.

    "In that small pouch on the front, you'll find a large chunk of flint and a piece of steel, and a little kindling. In the top of the pack is a small pot with cloth sack inside it, containing some vegetables, and some cooking herbs, a shallow dish and a cup, along with a canteen half full of water. Under that there's a few items of clothing, and a blanket folded up under that." She left it at that, hoping that was good enough. If the elf searched that far, it might appear that the blanket took up the rest of the room in the pack and that there was nothing under it. She had packed it that way on purpose, of course. She hoped he would be satisfied by that, because if he looked past the folded blanket, he would find a leather 'booklet' rolled up and containing several lockpicks, and a few other items she didn't want to be easily found, including a crystal wrapped up in a cloth. Hopefully he wouldn't look past the blanket, though. Then she recalled one more thing. "And in the side pocket, there on the outside of the bag, you'll find a small box, made of some nice smelling wood and carved on the outside with leaves and flowers and things. It's lined with velvet and contains a bag with a few coins, some various trinkets and jewelry pieces, along with a fancy brooch.."

    She decided a detailed description of that might help her case better. "It's gold and fashioned like a short tree, with one branch going to each side, and a smaller one going straight up, with a few leaves on them. There are five flowers part of the tree, red with white centers. They look a bit like jewels but I don't think they are." She found herself glad that she was able to remember the contents of her pack so well, as well as where everything was packed within it. "My family's jewelry, and all that I have left of them, is contained in that box." She added, untruthfully. She had nothing from her family, unless it were that crystal she guarded. She had 'found' those jewels in various places, some in people's houses, pinned to their dresses or around their wrists or wherever else jewelry was worn. But the elves didn't have to know that.. and if they believed the jewelry was of great sentimental value, they might be more inclined to return it to her.

    Out of the corner of her eye, she could see the bandit looking annoyed, and she was feeling just a tiny bit smug at his defeat, when he sprang up and grabbed her quite unexpectedly. His arm with the injured hand he used to hold her, using the arm and not the hand, and with his other hand he pressed a knife blade against her ribs. She felt the point of the blade poking her back, in a spot that would kill her if she was stabbed. Using her as a shield as protection from the elf's arrows, he stepped back a little, dragging her with him.
    "Alright.. I want that bag, or at least that box she just described so well. So I'd suggest you hand it over before I kill the girl." He sneered a bit, apparently expecting the elves to do what he said. Strawberry stood tensely for a moment, assessing the situation carefully, which also gave the elves a moment to see what they might do. The knife held to her back could easily kill her. If she spun around, she could get stabbed in the front of the ribs instead of the back of the ribs, with the same end result. But he made a mistake in leaving her arms free without at least disarming her first.

    "Let go of me." She warned him. He pressed the tip of the blade closer against her back.
    "You shut up and hold still." He ordered her. She suppressed a sigh. Well, she'd warned him. Swiftly, she pulled her dagger out of its sheath, reaching up over her shoulder to plunge the blade into his torso. As short as she is, and as tall as he is, her knife landed in just the right spot to pierce a lung. She immediately yanked herself free of his grip while he clutched at the spot. Of course, since she pulled her knife free, there was nothing to stop up the wound. He collapsed onto the ground, struggling to breathe and coughing. Strawberry stepped clear of him, frowning down at the dying man.. she hadn't actually wanted to kill any of them but they kind of made it so she had little other choice. Turning away from the bandit leader as he lay on the ground dying, she glanced up at the elves, to see what they would do now..

  21. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #21


    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle


    The Problem



    The day grew longer in the summer heat that followed and Rane's patience was sorely tested as both the Black Numenoreans played dumb with her. She knew they could speak but speak they would not. She was puzzled at them being so far North but she was not surprised as Sauron's army did consists a lot of Evil Men. She circled the both of them but like their Dunedain cousins of the North they knew how to stand still without fidgeting one bit unlike the sorry states of the other bandits who clearly came from either Bree or Archet.

    She noticed the interaction that went on between Tirindo, the supposed bandit leader and the Mortal girl but she intervened not. Her orders to her Authon was clear and she'd hope he would fare well with the Mortals, lacking in exposure to the Edain the brother of Feapoldie he was. So unlike his dead sister, she surmised. Best friend of her Master. So many times her Master told her stories of their friendship. So many times her Master told her how he'd missed her presence after her demise at the Fall of Gondolin. Nyarane never knew how to comfort her Master, her immortal guardian. Tirindo is her Master's only link to her but unlike Feapoldie both her Master and the Authon were never close. Friends, yes but maybe more like comrades. Both Noldor of Aman, three when you counted Feapoldie.

    Nyarane's memory of the past was distracted by the sudden commotion that ensued. Her instinct took over quickly and she smacked both the heads of the Black Numenoreans together with such force that a sickening thud was heard throughout and both fainted to the ground within seconds. Nyarane then went over to the Mortal girl but she could not prevent the killing that happened soon after.

    Drop your dagger, girl!
    Nyarane now snarled at Strawberry. The elleth sheathed her sword then checked the pulse of the dying Man. Nyarane then looked up at Tirindo and shook her head. He is dead. She spoke in Sindarin and closed his eyes and checked his body for any concealed weapons or valuables. Sure enough a crude blade was found strapped to his back and a bag of gold coins in his back pocket. Satisfied with her catch, she turned his body over and flung it at the other dead bodies. The surviving bandits on the ground looked at her with pleading eyes. Her response to them was easy.

    Tell me about those two later. She pointed to the Black Numenoreans who were still knocked out cold but yet lived. Tell me also about why you were preying on that girl. Nyarane pointed at Strawberry. I promise you that I will let you go if you cooperate with us. She nodded grimly at them. The elleth then stood next to Tirindo and beckoned the girl (Strawberry) to stand in from of them. You the elleth said sharply, have not been truthful to us Elves. I know the content of that bag is valuable to you. What in Morgoth's name were you thinking walking on your own in this infested woods of the North? Do you not know not the peril that you have brought upon yourself?

    Nyarane then jabbed Strawberry's right shoulder blade with her injured left hand. Thank Eru that we were in the right place at the right time or you would have left the Circles of Arda long ago in the hands of these ruffians. Nyarane made her intent clear that the Elves tolerated not the follies of Men and their squabbles. The elleth crossed her arms across her bosom obviously unhappy.

    Speak! she bellowed at Strawberry and picked up the bloodied dagger from the ground using her right boot and flicked it into the air and caught it masterfully in her injured left hand and surveyed the weapon whilst waiting for the Mortal to open her mouth and confess it all.
    Last edited by Aranadhel; 31/Aug/2016 at 10:03 PM.

  22. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #22

    Strawberry - Isolated stretch of road

    Strawberry
    was pretty sure she'd gotten a cut in her back, from that bandit's knife. She'd have to check that later, but for now there were the elves. It seemed she had angered them, or at least the woman elf. She was demanding that Strawberry drop her knife. She hesitated, frowning. She didn't like giving up her weapon to anyone, even though she had plenty more hidden on her person.
    "He tried to kill me, what was I supposed to do, let him?" She protested, while the other was checking the bandit leader. To Strawberry, it seemed like it was obvious she was only trying to protect herself, and that the guy was going to kill her. What, then, was the elf so angry about?

    She noted, with silent annoyance, that the elf took any gold she found on the dead guy, which is what Strawberry would have done if the elves hadn't interfered. And not only that, but Strawberry felt sure that she probably could have gotten out of the situation without anyone else coming along. As for the bandits that Rane was beginning to question, Strawberry doubted that those other bandits would tell them anything, because really, why would they believe that they would be allowed to go free as long as they cooperated? People never really meant that sort of thing. But to her surprise, the bandits decided that she must be truthful, and insisted that they were only following orders and that the leader had told them to do the things they had done, and they seemed anxious to make the elves believe that all the blame should be placed upon the leader who had given the orders. Maybe they thought elves would never lie? Strawberry felt quite certain they were wrong, but that was their problem, not hers. At least for now.

    She still had not dropped her dagger as she approached the elves, limping lightly on her injured leg. She only did this because the one had motioned for her to come toward them. She didn't really like this but maybe they would give her things back to her? Or perhaps even offer bandages for her wounds. But no. It seemed as if she was more interested in giving Strawberry a scolding, as if she were her mother. Although she wasn't quite sure what she meant by her having been untruthful. Could she knew she had lied about where the jewels came from? She was further annoyed to be jabbed in the shoulder, which caused her to drop the knife after all. She watched as the elf did a fancy move to flip the blade up into her hand from the ground.

    "What in Morgoth's name were you thinking walking on your own in this infested woods of the North? Do you not know not the peril that you have brought upon yourself?" The elf asked. Strawberry folded her arms - ignoring the pain in the upper right arm where it was bleeding.
    "And how else am I supposed to get from one place to another? Why do you think I am armed?" She frowned and shifted her weight onto her non-injured leg. "And I warned them from the start not to mess with me. I gave them two warnings, and they didn't listen, then I warned him," She gestured at the dead leader, "a third time to let me go, and he proved himself too stupid to live. Was I supposed to let him kill me?" She had a sarcastic tone in her voice now, as she was getting irritated.

    The way she saw it, she could understand him ignoring her first two warnings since he didn't know she wasn't a helpless girl at that time. But after having so many of his men defeated by that 'helpless girl', one would think he would have learned that she was, in fact, quite dangerous. So why would anyone with any intelligence persist to try and fight someone who had been proven to be dangerous? Therefore, she considered him too stupid to have kept himself from getting killed.

    But now the elf woman seemed angry that she had killed him, and Strawberry was irritated as well. Not did she not like being called a child, but she felt like this elf was angry at her for defending herself, which didn't make any sense at all to her. No, she did not like that she had to resort to killing anyone, even bandits, but when it was a matter of kill or be killed, she didn't like having to justify her actions. And it wasn't like she hadn't left some of them alive, at least..

  23. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #23


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    Interfering in an altercation
    A mini Guard Adventure


    They were neither of them fools, though the Lead Man might have shown his wisdom in declaring the bag was the property of his dead friend, and left it at that. Desperation accompanied his every word after. The girl's demeanour had meanwhile altered almost entirely. Gone were the almost territorial demands, replaced by a smug arrogance. As though she knew she had won this game before either of them spoke. Certain her descriptions were the more detailed, and she spoke with a sure confidence. But the Man was not to be so easily done out of his prize.

    Tirindo definitely should have searched them all for hidden weapons. The bandits were sure the thieves. And the girl, well .. he observed her cool dispatch of her captor. She was something else.

    Rane did not surprise him with the news of the Man's death. But as she rendered her reluctant 'informants' unconscious, he could not help but wonder if she'd be so keen to gift the dead folk here a proper burial. Meanwhile of course, her temper was taken with one who might respond.

    It would be wrong to present as a divided front, still he struggled to conceal his disapproval when his comrade seized such stolen property herself. "Nyarane" he fell to typical Sindarin. "The girl is not without harm done to her. I think she has learnt her lesson." He genuinely hoped so.

    "All you, surrender your weapons, unto the grass before you," he tried some further Westron on the Bandits. Before anyone else felt need to be brave. "We would not have let him kill you," he sought to convince the girl, who had reclaimed her wrath. The Noldo made a point of looking through her bag, but if he found anything of intrigue, he did not draw it out for all here to see. His relentless eyes fell over Strawberry's defiance and handed the bag to Nyarane. "There are ways to preserve life without the taking of another's life," he lectured the girl, sternly. With a slow shake of his head.

    "Would you do the honours of searching these folk for any weapons they yet have upon their person ?" he asked his fellow Elf but the proposal was made in Westron, as much for practice as to inspire the hasty emergence of further blades and such that some of the Men had held onto until now. They dropped them rather than have the elleth find weapons on their person. Tirindo shook his head, as though disappointed in them all. The threat of Rane inflicting violence served a better deterrent that his polite request had done. It grieved him that life was so.

    "Those of you not due to meet the earth this day shall see to the burial of your fellows," he decided. "Might be that shall ingrain this memory in your thick heads. That to threaten another with death may always raise the threat of your death. That goes for you too," he made clear to the feisty girl. "Anyone who wishes to try and flee from this errand shall learn firsthand just how far an Elf can see, and how fast an arrow may speed."

    The Elves might have to help of course, for more than one of the Mortals was injured. But the toil should wear out the spirit of rebellion in most. And make visible quite how badly and quite where injuries had been forged. He did not trust a single solitary one of them to give a true account of their hurts any way else.

    "Dig."
    Last edited by Ercassie; 06/Sep/2016 at 01:47 PM.

  24. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #24

    Strawberry - Isolated stretch of road

    Strawberry
    really tried not to think about the bandits she had killed. She really didn't to, but these bandits had basically begged for it. Especially the leader, and the elf guy could say that they wouldn't have let them kill her, but that didn't mean that she'd still be standing if she hadn't acted on her own and taken the guy down herself. She also didn't really care for the guy's lecturing tone telling her things she already knew. She'd knocked unconscious as many of them she could, but she couldn't help it with some of them; when outnumbered so much and you're fighting for your life, sometimes you just have to do what's necessary to survive, or so she saw it. And she felt better by telling herself the bandits would have probably killed other people if they'd lived, so she was probably saving some other people.

    So then he asked his elf friend to search the bandits for any more hidden weapons. Strawberry stepped aside to let her go do that. She still had her arms folded, and intended to stay out of the way. She did, however, wonder if he was ever going to give her bag back to her. He'd given it to the female elf now, and Strawberry was really getting anxious about this. She should never have stored the thing in her bag, instead of keeping it close on her person. If so, she could have just left her bag and gone on her way, letting the bandits keep the stuff inside. She didn't like to leave some of that stuff but it was mostly the crystal she was concerned about. She was glad at least that the searching didn't seem to be for her too, she didn't like the idea of being searched and she also didn't like the idea of having to give up any of her weapons.

    She listened quietly while the elf told the bandits they had to bury their fallen comrades, and tilted her head curiously. What were they supposed to dig holes with? She vaguely wondered about that but wasn't too concerned about it until she heard the guy say that it went for her too. She blinked in surprise and looked at him, thinking surely she misheard him. Why should she have to help the bandits? She wasn't any sort of friend to them, and if it were left to her she'd drag them into a pile and go on her way, if that. Strawberry kept quiet as she heard the bandits give a few protests, including one man asking 'what are we supposed to dig with?' She just frowned and kept quiet while trying to figure out how this plan was supposed to work and how she was going to get the elves to return her things to her. She also wondered if she should just outright refuse to work with the bandits.

    Realizing that being angry and frustrated was really not helping matters, Strawberry took a couple of deep breaths and tried to calm herself. Maybe if she calmed down and tried to cooperate with the elves, they'd give her back her bag. Maybe if they sort of started over, they might realize that she's not an enemy here, and she might not feel so much like they are enemies. It was worth a try anyway, so she made an effort to calm down and look less irritated.

    ((
    just realized, there were 16 bandits to start with. I counted 9 who were killed, and 4 who were knocked unconscious. I'm sure some of those have woken up by now so we'll go with at least three who are conscious, and those two black numenorians are still unconscious. Sound about right to you guys?. And, in case I misunderstood about whether they wanted her to drop her weapons as well, then she also assumed they didn't mean her))
    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 07/Sep/2016 at 05:28 AM.
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  25. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #25


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    Interfering in an altercation
    A mini Guard Adventure

    All of the Aiwenare Elves had ever been draconian. It was a family trait, and one that the Eldest had small qualms about demonstrating. Tirindo had spent his life seeking to keep some quite testing spirits in order. Feapoldie, Erfaron, Culasso ... He did not always succeed of course, beyond causing them to claim his strict rules were the cause of their rebellion. But in this case, the Bandits bewilderment, the girl's evident shock .. Both told him enough to support his plot. They were asking him the correct questions, at the least. At last. Their minds were bending now about how to accomplish a worthy if difficult task.

    "I have small doubt," he eyed the bandit who had openly made question. "That if I told you a sheer hoard of treasures lie buried beneath your feet, that each last one of you would scratch and claw until your fingers bled to unveil that prize. Why then are you disinclined toward that same exertion for the sake of your fellow Men ?

    Your needless bloodshed has offended the world. You must appease it. You must sacrifice your time and labour to exhibit you are sorry. For all of you are liars and I will not believe words.
    "

    One rather daring fellow decided he'd had quite enough of this Elvish interference. He made a limping dash toward the Authon's horse, thinking that might be the Elf would not shoot at the steed, or at least that the escapist would gain a speedier getaway upon four legs. With a sigh, the Noldo turned. The Man's flight beat a drum roll of pulsing excitement across the land. The Elf's arrow brought that fool though to an anti-climax. The fletched missile sowed pain within the Man's right leg, and he collapsed. Face-first.

    Tirindo strode wearily to retrieve his straggler. The Man had actually risen up again, from where the Elf's arrow had felled him. He staggered, flailed and continued his vain efforts toward an unlikely outcome. Tirindo caught him up easily, and a hand dropped upon the bandit's shoulder, arresting his flight.

    "Now how is that," the Elf led the Man's eyes downward to inspect the damage on his limb, "going to help you with your task ?" He snapped the lengthy wooden shaft in twain, whilst it yet peered from both the entry and the exit wound. This inspired new songs of woe to emanate from the bandit's mouth. Tirindo handed the severed arrow portion to the thankless bandit and led the grimacing Mortal back into line.

    "Has anybody else need of an arrow to aide their labours ?" he smoothed the curve of his bow with one hand, dared them to test him. It was heartless maybe, but they would walk/limp away from the punishment relatively unscathed. There were others who, in his position, would have slain all the varmints without thought.

    "Demand first they build a trough, and they shall think themselves fortunate when you halt them at only the workings of a puddle," he mentioned quietly to his comrade. "Bind your Black Numenoreans, Nyarane. There are questions yet unanswered. "

    He paused on the verge of asking Rane to return the girl's bag. He had no further cause to keep it from Strawberry, save that she would likely cooperate if they possessed due leverage. There was much about this strange child that he did not favour letting run wild without further explanation.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 13/Sep/2016 at 11:52 PM.

  26. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #26




    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle


    Jewel, Mine


    Rane suppressed her features really hard from laughing out loud at the comical reactions of the surviving bandits in parting their weapons, concealed or otherwise to the hard ground floor. She followed suit and threw Strawberry's dagger into the pile as well. Look at that, Authon. She purred in Sindarin at Tirindo. You have scared the poor Mortals to death with your Westron speech! Well done! She playfully clapped both her hands and automatically winced, forgetting her left hand was still bleeding.

    The elleth quickly smiled as she inspected the insides of the bag that belonged to the Mortal girl. Rane looked up sharply suddenly at Strawberry. What is your name, little one? She asked in Westron. With her right hand Rane pointed at Tirindo. This beautiful Elf you see before you, his name is Death-swift. She lied to Strawberry. And I, the elleth took her time to bow down so her ageless beautiful sky blue elven eyes were of the same level as the Mortal's girls' eyes am called Quick-hand. Rane stared deep into Strawberry's soul via her eyes to gauge her fea. It was at this hour that one of the idiotic bandits found himself a moving target for Tirindo. Rane did not have to look to know the fate of the idiot.

    Satisfied, Rane then raised herself again to her full height with the bag in hand and whistled to herself as she made her way to the two still unconscious Black Numenoreans on the floor and tied them up quickly. She then continued to rummage thru Strawberry's bag and chuckled to herself when she'd discovered some hidden pockets. Clever girl, the elleth mused. Her slender fingers brushed against something cold and small and Rane peered deeper and was surprised at the catch she found. Now she fully understood why the Mortal girl was so possessive and wanted her bag back. Rane swiftly hid it from Tirindo's sight for she knew he would disapprove of her action. As always. For the past 3000 years of the Sun in the Third Age.

    Rane then made her way back to her fellow Elf and tossed Strawberry's bag to the ground next to her feet and tossed a small wooden shovel at the feet of the petrified bandits that she had taken from her saddlebags. You heard what he said! Dig! Rane echoed Tirindo's command in Westron and the sad souls scrambled to their feet in no time and started to deface the land to bury the soon to smell bodies.

    She then turned and pointed her finger at Strawberry. Go find some dry wood and start a fire. You run, you die. Her words were final. Without looking at Tirindo she said softly to him in Quenyan before she sprinted into the shadows, She is injured and tired. Let her rest after she makes the fire.We shall have a feast tonight, Authon.

    Rane wanted to see the precious catch on her own away from prying eyes and what better way to do it whilst she went on a hunt.

    Last edited by Aranadhel; 07/Sep/2016 at 07:46 PM.

  27. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #27

    Strawberry - Isolated stretch of road

    Strawberry
    turned to Rane when she spoke to her again, asking her name. She didn't like that she called her 'little one' and just for that, she gave her the most basic answer she could honestly give.
    "I can't tell you that." She reply quite seriously, gazing back at Rane, not the least bit intimidated, so if that was her goal by staring at her like that, it wasn't successful. The names that 'Quick-hand' gave didn't sound at all like elvish names as she would have expected to hear. Her expression was just a little skeptical but she nodded slightly, and wondered if they were ever going to give her stuff back.

    She watched as the bandit moron decided that running was a good idea. As promised, the elf shot him with an arrow. She wondered why these men were all such idiots that they kept begging to be hurt or killed. She held back a sigh as 'Quick-hand' began searching her bag. Was it not enough that the guy had searched it? She glanced over as the bandits began to dig using the shovel 'Quick-hand' had let them use. She tilted her head and frowned.
    "Wouldn't it be better if you dig the holes off of the road?" She pointed out, again marveling at these guy's lack of intelligence. Rolling her eyes, she glanced back at the elf who was now ordering her to get firewood before taking off into the forest. Strawberry carefully hid any trace of being pleased by this. With her face an unreadable mask, she turned to him, who was supposedly called 'Death-swift'. "If I'm to make a fire, I'll need my bag." She pointed out. She paused for a moment before moving toward the forest to do as she had been told. She was fine with making a fire, she just wished that she had her stuff back in her own possession.

    She looked around the edge of the forest, staying within sight of 'Death-swift' so that he knew she wasn't trying to run. Why would she run when they had her things? That's what kept her from just running from the bandits, which is why she ended up in this mess..because she refused to leave without her stuff. Specifically, without that one item which she believed to still be hidden in the bottom of her bag. Once she had gathered enough wood for a fire, from picking up fallen branches and things, she returned with her armful of wood.
    "Where should I build this fire?" She inquired, and waited for a reply before going to wherever she was told to put it.

    Strawberry focused on her task, placing the wood in just the right way so that it would make a good camp fire, and demonstrating that she was very familiar with doing this task. Once she had all the wood in place, it was time to use the flint and steel to start the fire. She knew that it would be helpful to get the fire going now so that by the time they were ready to cook whatever they were going to cook, the embers should be just about right for doing so.
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  28. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #28


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure


    The remains of the day subsided into the gaunt hem of slow approaching twilight. All colour looked to flee the sky, but for subtle tinges of suggestion that painted the shivering fingers of cold, pale grass. Tirindo was less affected by the stroke of hours passing, or the advance of slight chill, than were his unhappy charges. Still he reasoned that the labour he had set them to might keep them warm. Privately the Elf wished that the cold was his worst trouble to contend with, though the truth was something else.

    He had decided that the small flame-haired girl was not outright lying to their faces, although it was evident that she was nonetheless keeping truths close to her chest. The Authon had been roused from his overseeing of the bandits, when he'd heard this mortal claim she 'can't' tell them her name. This fact seemed somewhat unlikely, until he reflected upon Nyarane giving up false names for each of them. He did not waste his time protesting, but the drop of concentrated gaze toward hard ground as comment, should have been some indication of his unease with this falsehood.

    He had told untruths before in his life, certainly. But now possessed enough years of experience to know that such behaviour rarely led to good ends. The saying was just; that a soul shall reap just what he sows.

    The digging bandits were unlikely to achieve anything momentous. Their efforts were half-hearted, until Rane made them a gift of a small spade. It took only so long for the feisty Maethor to depart before the Men began to fight over who of them should use the simple tool. Aiwenarion could scarce bring himself to observe them further. It seemed that no matter how little they had, they should each strive to have more than all others. But mayhaps he was judging them harshly. He knew naught of where and what they'd come from. If he was very fortunate they would all do each other in and save the Elves the bother of their babysitting else ..

    "You are also injured," he had mentioned to Nyarane, before she made flight. Of course this common sense failed to stall her, and he had to admit that mayhaps the smell of well-cooked food would make their 'friends' here even more compliant, as that reward be imagined. Rane was as fine a cook as she was fair with her blade. No one in their right mind should run from a tantalising meal. Maybe even the girl might recognise the benefit of exploring the scouts' company.

    Dark hair danced about the stern countenance of the Noldo, who was not hungry himself. Glancing up he made no elseways comment when the girl hinted for her bag to be returned. She did not require the bag or its contents to gather firewood, he realised; and awaited for her to realise as well. In fact, a burden such as a full bag weighing upon her might well impede her efforts in that errand. Still, she paused and he did not react. He had known his fair share of theatrics in this life and was content to sit back, unfazed.

    "Where is it you suppose that you should build the fire ?" he returned her query with its own. There was no likelihood after all that he might now believe she could not manage in the wild.

    She was the wild.

    And so she set about it. In time, even he could not restrain himself. "Your name," he resurrected the subject from before, while she worked. "Was that stolen from you also ?"

    The bag thumped to the ground beside the girl's feet, belatedly to assist her in starting with the fire. Tirindo felt fairly confident that she could not outrun his ... 'want for answers' ...

  29. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #29


    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle


    Jewel, Mine Part II


    Rane had quickly melted into the woods as she was mighty curious about the jewel she had found in the Mortal's bag. When she felt that she was quite far from their location Rane took out the jewel from her side pocket. Ai! She said to herself. Tis beautiful. The crystal she held up delicately between her thumb and index finger and it shone like no other as the day turned into dusk. She was certain her mouth was agape the whole time and she quickly fumbled in her side pockets for a key chain.

    Found one she did and she quickly fitted the crystal and modified the chain into a crude necklace and put it around her neck. There! After a few seconds the elleth felt a sensation coursing thru her body and she could feel her senses had somewhat heightened to a higher level. If she could see her reflection in the water she would have seen her blue eyes now shone like diamonds in the sky. Her eyesight she could see farther than before and her hearing also had manifested two-folds over. She clasped the crystal necklace now resting on her chest. Magical is it? She asked herself, doubt overtook her common sense.

    She then quickly looked to her left and her now heightened hearing could hear soft footsteps of an animal. She reached out for her arrow but immediately realised that in her haste she had forgotten to bring her bow. Nevertheless, her sword and dagger accompanied her here and she quickly and quietly dispatched a big deer that was idly sniffing the grasses. Never in the Three Ages of the Sun had she felt more alive! More in tuned with Arda! She could hear the plants, the trees whispering to her like never before!

    She felt excited and her heartbeat was racing fast as she skinned the deer and tossed out it's guts and innards into the bushes. What she did not realise was that after she had wiped her bloodied hands clean using fallen leaves her left arm that had the Wargs' bite had healed although she still felt stiff and sore.

    *******

    It was already dark when Rane returned to the "camp" and set the carcass on the ready made fire pit. We shall eat soon, she said out loud for all to hear in Westron. She dared not look into Tirindo's eyes face to face yet. Rane frowned at the Mortal girl, suddenly feeling that (Strawberry) was more than what she had claimed. Was it the work of the crystal that had made her feel threatened now? Rane shook off the thought and rubbed some salt on the roasting deer. If the people that observed her thought she was foolish to put her bare hands on top of the burning fire and meat Rane absent mindedly never felt the pain of the searing heat as she whistled a tune and concentrated on the cooking at hand.


    Last edited by Aranadhel; 14/Sep/2016 at 11:56 AM.

  30. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #30

    Strawberry - Isolated stretch of road
    With Tirindo and Nyrane

    Strawberry ignored the bandits now. They appeared to have at least moved off of the hard road to dig the graves of their fellows, and were now fighting over who would use the shovel. She paid no attention to them, and focused on building the firewood into the proper formation for a cooking fire. Not sure what sort of food the elf woman would be bringing back, she built a semi-large teepee style fire, putting the kindling inside of the teepee and then arranged some stones around the fire, partly to keep the fire from catching on any stray leaves or twins lying nearby, and partly so there would be surfaces to use for cooking, once they got hot enough.

    While she was busy doing this, the other elf came nearer and asked about her name, if it was stolen from her. She looked down as she worked, considering that question for a moment before giving an answer.
    "Yes.." She said quietly, after deciding that 'stolen from her' was a well enough description for it. "I suppose you might say that." She added. Her pack was dropped to the ground near her, and she glanced over at it, then pulled it closer to her..almost protectively. She found the flint and steel that she needed, and soon had started the fire burning. It would need a few minutes to burn down and get the embers hot before it was ready for cooking, but it should be there by the time 'Quick hand' had returned from her hunting.

    Once she had the fire burning, she sat back and looked up at the tall dark haired elf.
    "I'm called Strawberry by anyone I have to give a name to.. like the fruit, yes. It's not my name, but it's the closest I have to one." She shrugged and then put her flint and steel away in her pack and took out a pan that they could use to cook on, in case they didn't have any of their own. She set it beside the fire and then searched in her pack to find supplies with which to bandage her wounds.

    By the time 'Quick hand' had returned, the fire was just right for cooking and Strawberry had just finished bandaging her wounds. She was much more relaxed now than when Rane left, and when she returned, Strawberry looked up and watched her start working on the meat. But something seemed off about her. Strawberry didn't claim to know her well enough to know when she wasn't acting herself, but she could tell something was very different about her. She didn't know too much about Elves, but the way her eyes were sort of..shining or glowing or something, it concerned Strawberry quite a bit. She'd seen a look like that before, but where..?

    She bit her lip, then after a moment's hesitation she looked in her pack, pretending to be looking for a canteen. But one hand slipped in further and found where she had hidden the main item of concern, that which she was determined never to let anyone else take, lest it fall into the hands of the enemies who were pursuing her. After waiting until both elves were not looking toward her, she pulled that out with the canteen -using the canteen to sort of block the other from sight- and then she hid the item of concern the best that she could on her person. She felt much more secure about it being hidden there than in her pack, after today's events.

    Now, for the matter of what was wrong with 'Quick hand'. She took a drink from her canteen as she watched the elf rub seasonings on the meat with her bare hand. That she didn't even seem to show any caution about the fire and the heat made Strawberry think harder about what could be causing this. This didn't seem normal at all. She thought back to before she left, and recalled her searching in Strawberry's pack.

    Then she studied her more closely. The sort of glow in her eyes spoke of some sort of power that had not been there before. The lack of caution reminded her of.. OH. The jewel! That explained a lot. She must have stolen a dangerous item that Strawberry'd had hidden in a secret pocket. This was bad..very bad. She frowned and tried to think of a plan. What could she do? She had to get that back from her before something bad happened...
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  31. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #31


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure


    Day gave way to night and as the hours robbed their camp of light, so too were the Mortals slowly diminished toward a calmer disposition. Tirindo checked their horses and glanced about the fringe of trees for Nyarane. Still she was not to be observed and he dared not grant the bandits a lapse in supervision. Not quite as yet.

    Strawberry seemed far more congenial now that she had her bag returned. But as she tended to her wounds, and he reflected upon her vague responses, the Authon was forced to admit that the more answers that the girl gave up, the more questions the Elf considered be relevant. By the time that Nyarane returned, Tirindo had talked himself out of trying to console the strange child. He might have offered the information that Elves use many epesse over the course of their long lives. But that subject would like bring up the matter of Rane's recent untruth.

    Unless he had heard very much wrong, his comrade had told an outright untruth to the girl, of their two names. It was an effort to reconcile his concerns with the hope that she was merely playing cautious with their true identities. Though he saw no need to. But might be he had merely misunderstood what was said. As though to further cement his anxiety, the Maethor refused to breaker eye contact with him. Though she had returned from her hunt in jubilation, still she kept to herself. And when he made move to speak quietly to her, Rane turned her back on him.

    His pride rattled, the Elf resolved to leave the Elleth be, as she might be merely territorial about the cooking of her kill. She had ever been quite independent, after all. With a slow shake of his head, he checked the bonds of the two Black Numenoreans, and gathered up the confiscated weaponry the bandits had surrendered. Without words he strode over to where the survivors were now, far more sedately, digging. Hands released the hoard of dangerous utensils into the pit they had managed, and the Elf ignored the circle of astounded faces.

    "Bury them," he directed, arms crossed. "Since you can none of you be entrusted not to misuse them. The Earth shall keep them."

    He stood over the Men as they dejectedly did as he said. There ought to have been surprise at the absence of argument. But he was loath to incite further 'excitement'. Every now and again, he glanced with acclimatising night eyes to where Nyarane and Strawberry were shooting one another sidelong looks. And not a one of them free from suspicion. The air was not cold but still he shivered.

    "You may eat your fill and tend your maladies, once those are all pocketed by the Earth."

    The words fell from Tirindo's mouth but he recognised not his own voice. Something was assuredly not right upon the air tonight. He could feel tension, as though ropes tore him, each limb from limb. The distant tree line waved at him menacingly. He shivered again.

    "Enough," he decided at some length. And the notion exceeded his patience over the Men's task. A nod of his head saw them shuffle dejectedly toward the fire, and the scintillating aroma of slow cooked meat. "Now sit, none of you too close to the girl," he ensured.

    This was for their sakes as much as hers, from what he'd seen. But they sided away from Nyarane as much as from Strawberry. Once again he could not blame them. But when he caught the whisper that two bandits shared, in some shock, he pulled at Rane's shoulder to face him. Her hands were upon the very meat that she was cooking. Flames slow baking her skin and that of the readied deer.

    "Nyarane !" he marvelled, and strove to drag her back from such close proximity to peril. He could not comprehend how she was so unaffected by the pain. He could make no sense of it at all.

    He had been burnt. Long ago. He remembered how it felt ..
    Last edited by Ercassie; 21/Sep/2016 at 12:03 PM.

  32. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #32

    Strawberry - Camping with Tirindo and Nyarane


    Strawberry
    kept watching Rane, frowning a bit. She had to get it away from her somehow. But where was it? She thought carefully about that. Given the nature of the jewel, from what she knew about it, she was pretty sure that it had to be kept on one's person to have such an effect on them. And as strongly as the power held within the gem was showing through Rane, she guessed that she must have it against her skin. But how? She studied the elf woman for a moment, and, spotting a thin chain around the elf's neck, she finally came to the conclusion that the gem must be in a necklace of some sort. It must be in whatever that chain was holding, because she hadn't been wearing that chain when she left here earlier. Strawberry was fairly sure that she would have noticed if she had. She was rather good at noticing when people were wearing jewelry of any kind, just in case the person might need to be relieved of it...

    She tried to think of how she was going to get that jewel away from her. Normally, in a case like that, she would wait until the person was asleep or at least not paying attention, and then lift it off of them. But she remembered how hard it had been, getting it away from the Earl creep in that castle, which seemed so long ago now. She shivered very slightly as she remembered the dungeon she'd woken up in, and the intentions that evil man had in mind for her, and the horror stories she heard, later, from other young women who had survived being a 'guest' in his castle. She had no idea how evil he had been to begin with, but the jewel definitely gave some sort of powers, and being more alert and having beyond-normal strength and not feeling pain were some of the things she had noticed seemed to come from the jewel.

    Waiting for the elves to sleep wouldn't work either, she was sure. In addition to the extra alert stuff, she was pretty sure that she'd heard somewhere that elves sleep a lot less than humans do, so she probably wouldn't have a chance to catch her asleep. So she would have to find another way to re-acquire the jewel. And she also had to make sure that she got it wrapped up again in its cloth. Didn't that silly elf realize that there was a really good reason why it was wrapped up so securely in a cloth and tucked away in a secret pocket? She often wondered about some people's intelligence... but anyway, she watched the other elf rush over and stop Rane from cooking her hands. She was glad, because she had been considering whether she should intervene on that matter, but had a strong feeling that it would not be appreciated, and now she didn't have to. But, maybe she could use this distraction to get the jewel back...

    ((
    Aranadhel, I would have done more but I wanted to wait and see what Rane is going to do, fire :) ))
    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 22/Sep/2016 at 04:01 AM.
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  33. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #33


    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle


    Jewel, Mine Part III




    With lightning quick reflexes Rane turned and swatted away Tirindo's hand. Do not dare touch me you stupid Exile! she snarled in Quenyan to him, finally locking her now blazing ethereal eyes with the ancient Noldo of TIrion's eyes. She took a step back from him and finally noticed that her injured left arm has repaired by itself and she smiled evilly at that revelation. She clenched and un-clenched her left hand then walked back to the fire and unsheathed her sword and cleaved the roasted deer in two. She picked up the still burning hot meat and tossed it into the direction of the bandits.

    Eat and be silent!
    she ordered the Mortals in Westron. Rane then stooped and flung a piece of the deer leg to Strawberry next. You, my dear girl Rane pointed the tip of her sword at her direction, you are hiding more than meets the eyes. We know what it is now. Rane's crooked smile enveloped her beautiful face, now lighted with a faint glimmer just like Tirindo. Where before the elleth had not the blazing eyes and the glow like Tirindo, now she has both as well. The air grew thick with malice at the moment.

    Rane then gave Strawberry a last warning. Finish your food then come sit with us. I would like to know your name. She then turned around and faced Tirindo. I see you clearly now, Authon. Your heart, your mind. You broke my Nolmener's heart for not saving his best friend. She then kicked dust at his boots and sat alone by the fire, watching all the Mortals eat with the eyes of a hawk. A very dangerous hawk that is.



    Last edited by Aranadhel; 22/Sep/2016 at 07:29 PM.

  34. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #34


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure


    It played upon his skin, the sharp slap of the Elleth's hand. Not that it made either impact or injury, not in the traditional sense. He was no stranger to suffering abuse and/or name-calling. He had raised five younger sisters, ensured they stepped up to meet their parents' expectations. Ensured they conducted themselves in a fashion befitting their once prestigious name. It had .. not been easy. He had become accustomed to unpredictability. And temper. And petty rebellion.

    Still, equipped as he was, prepared and experienced as he was; this ... This was something entirely different.

    So the venomous reaction that now corrupted Nyarane, it rendered the Authon toward startlement. His grey eyes clouded with a bewilderment, as he backed a slow pace away. The embers of pride, and fury, and righteous indignation were commencing arousal. Somewhere deep beneath all of the layers of self control. And the fact that she had managed to ignite those embers at all, which he had long preferred to pretend that he possessed not at all ... that only angered him more so.

    As Nyarane strode about them all, the Noldo observed how she stroked her previously injured arm. The blood had dried into her clothes, but it might as well have been someone else's. That smile however, lit new shadows in the pretty Elleth's face. A demonic quality had tainted her once angelic expression, contorting her features something sinister. Though she be illuminated by a radiance of starlike wonder, the Maethor felt 'wrong' to Tirindo. There was no better word he could conjure to explain the whole situation. But he looked upon his friend and in that moment knew how once Celebrimbor had felt, when the malice of Annatar had finally shone through the shimmering facade.

    The Authon frowned to behold the Elleth take her blade to scare the young girl. "Leave her be, Tarsalaurie" he warned her in the privacy of their own tongue; putting hand to the pommel of his own sword in turn. "You go too far .." he considered carefully and dared wish that she might now do the same.

    What she spoke of their mutual friend made not even the skeleton of sense. Aranadhel had been stood at Tirindo's side, during the Fall of Gondolin. Together they had tried and failed to keep the wall from invaders, together they had tried and failed to keep safe many of their own number. Those such as Laegon ....

    For Rane to speak so now, proved only that she had no real concept of what her Nolmenor had suffered at all. For Rane to this, speak so now, proved that she had chosen her words with one objective in mind.

    She was deliberately trying to hurt him.

    Smugly satisfied by her performance, the madness of Nyarane settled herself on the ground. Several things happened then at once.

    Tirindo glanced down at the dust that his young, affected comrade had employed as a gesture of contempt. The slow fuse within his blood approached the fringe of his limits. With the grace endowed upon him by a blessed youth, the Noldo unsheathed his sword, like a shooting star extended at his wrist. And he stepped, just once, but swift. And he brought down the dull end of his tool against the blonde waterfall of Nyarane's long hair.

    Such a move should have at least stolen the consciousness of a normal Elleth. Was she normal though ? Not this day !

    The Bandits who could, and had been dismayed by the capricious emotions of the she elf, scrambled as a one and split up in every which direction their feet could make flight. Reasoning the archer could not shoot them all, and that for at least the moment, he seemed to be quite seriously preoccupied.

    Tirindo did not so much as flicker an eyelid at their departure. Turning from where he believed he had rendered Rane to tumble harmless on the ground, he lowered his sword but closed in upon Strawberry.

    He had heard of strange things occurring in Angmar of quite recent times. Though he had not witnessed it himself, he knew a strange thing when it attacked him. Rane had been ... something. Ensorcelled ?

    "You know .." he realised, taking in Strawberry's own concerned expression. "What do you know ?"
    Last edited by Ercassie; 27/Sep/2016 at 06:50 PM.

  35. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #35

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane


    Strawberry
    watched the elves for a moment, while trying to slowly edge closer. Their little fight served as a bit of a distraction, which was good because she wanted to get close enough to swipe the necklace. For once, this wasn't a case of her wanting to grab something shiny and pretty, this was possibly a matter of life or death, for herself or the other guy. And saving the girl elf from whatever fate might come from her being corrupted by the jewel, too. She didn't really know what might happen, or if it had any lasting effects. It was hard to tell, since she didn't know if the guy who she acquired it from had been the way he was before wearing the jewel, or because of wearing it. But, he must have had it for many years, and Rane had only been wearing it for less than an hour probably, so that would be something in her favor.

    Either way, she found a cloth in one of her pockets, a kerchief, which would be perfect for wrapping the jewel in once she had it back in her possession, and continued edging a bit closer to try and get near enough to grab it, while trying to act like maybe she just wanted to get closer to the fire. It was a little chilly out, so it wasn't unreasonable that she might want to get warm. And watching the elves wasn't really that odd of a thing to do, considering that they looked like they might start battling sword to sword any moment. It was the sort of thing that is hard to look away from. Actually, the way the girl elf was acting and the hateful tone she used to speak to her friend, made Strawberry feel a bit sorry for the guy, who probably had no idea what this change was that had come over her. She didn't feel like it was a good time for explanations, however. She had something more important to do at the moment.

    She didn't even flinch as a leg of deer was thrown at her, and caught it easily, despite it being hot. She was hungry, but right now she felt like it was more important to stop what was happening. She set the meat down on one of the stones by the fire, and rubbed her hands on her pants. It was too hot to eat right now anyway, so she'd let it sit there until she was ready for it. Even after the bandits had fled, Strawberry stayed where she was. She wasn't about to leave. She couldn't, not without that jewel being tucked safely away in her bag again. Strawberry froze when the guy drew his sword. Was he going to kill her? She started to call out to him to stop him from killing his friend, when she realized what he was actually doing..trying to knock her unconscious.

    Actually, this was just the chance Strawberry needed. As soon as Rane had been struck, Strawberry jumped forward. The blow caused her to fall down, and Strawberry reached to grab the thin chain she saw around her neck. The jewel had to be on the necklace, it just had to be. If she could get that off of her, then the elf could begin to recover. She didn't even bother answering the guy just yet, when he asked her what she knew. She was too focused on grabbing the necklace, hoping that it would come off easily, because once she had it she could wrap a cloth around it once more, and hide it away safely. And then she could give explanations, because she was sure that it was going to be demanded of her. She only hoped that he didn't attack her because of her lunging to grab the necklace from his friend..

    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 27/Sep/2016 at 08:50 PM. Reason: fixing a double post, adding something
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  36. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #36


    Nyarane


    Maethor

    Rivendell Guard

    with Ercassie & Rainelle


    Jewel, Mine Part IV


    The rough tugging around her neck woke Rane up instantenously. The last she had remembered was being hit on her temple by Tirindo's sword pommel and she fell to the ground. The elleth's eyes lit up again in fury as she witnessed Strawberry tugging the necklace around her neck as a dark voice whispered in her mind as if on cue. *Take it from the girl... take whatever she is hiding on her body... Take it!* The voice crackled.

    Animatedly, Rane's hands seized Strawberry's in a death grip and the elleth said in a dark voice to the Mortal. You have made a wrong move, young one. Now hand over the jewel that you're hiding somewhere on your body or I will make you suffer! Rane wrapped and pinned the Mortal to the hard ground floor with both her legs so that she won't escape. Rane was determined to seize the precious prize off Strawberry. She was determined to win the fight. At all costs. *Take it! take it! The voice ranted in Rane's mind.
    Last edited by Aranadhel; 27/Sep/2016 at 08:15 PM.

  37. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #37

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane


    Strawberry
    was not quite expecting such a fast recovery from being knocked unconscious, so when Rane grabbed her by the throat. She was pinned on the ground before she was quite sure what happened, and found that she was being choked. Something must be done about this. She tried struggling, which of course did no good. She knew she had to get out of this quick, because if she didn't, she wouldn't be able to once she started to lose consciousness. It crossed her mind to pull her dagger and fight that way, which she would have done if it were a bandit attacking her, but she didn't want to kill this elf. She knew it wasn't really her doing this, and she didn't want to kill her. But she didn't want to let herself be killed either...

    With those thoughts racing swiftly through her head while the girl struggled to try and pry the elf's hands from around her throat, it suddenly occurred to her that this was a good opportunity to grab the necklace. She still had the cloth in her hand, even. Even as she choked and coughed, breathe, Strawberry reached out and grabbed again at the chain. She managed to tug it out from the elf's clothing so that it was out in the open now.

    The threat surprised her a bit, as through the struggling she heard the elf demand that she give up the jewel she had hidden. How could she know about that? She tried not to think too much about it, because she had to focus on one thing right now. And that one thing was grabbing the jewel that was causing Rane to act this way. She missed it a couple of times, as it was hard to see where she was grabbing while being choked, but finally, with the cloth over her hand to protect her from the jewel's influence, Strawberry felt the jewel in her hand, and closed her hand tightly around it, trying to wrap the chain around her fingers a little so that even if she passed out, her hand would still be gripping the now cloth-wrapped jewel. She hoped very much that if she could get the jewel off of her, that she would return to normal and stop trying to choke her. If that didn't work, then her only other chance was if the guy was able to save her..

    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  38. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #38


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure

    Order was his world. Rules to live by. Truths to be respected. Loyalties to be treasured. What happened in the course of a few moments tarried so far from what should have happened, that the Noldo should not be surprised.

    Something was certain wrong with Nyarane. The mortal girl who was already such an enigma favoured no attempt to offer explanations. Tirindo raised a solitary eyebrow to the heavens of his high brow. "Find the lost scout," he grumbled. "Cant be that hard. No trolls at the least ..."

    He watched as Nyarane shook off with some ease what should have stalled her a good long time. Now it seemed she was inviting him to hurt her ? But was that even possible ? He had little understanding of anything at this point.

    The Noldo liked facts. He liked truths. He liked rights and wrongs. So he managed to overlook the way he might just have rode away and left the two females to their anarchy. Tempting as it was. Intervening in the first place was what had landed them in this trouble to start with. But it would be wrong to let a life be forcibly eradicated, not when it might be saved. There was yet one final pressing matter. A fact. A truth that no oddity could erase.

    A person being strangled had what might be minutes before the assault had potential to prove fatal. Rolling his eyes, and assuming (although there was no proof, given what had happened with the mortal fighting vs the bandits) that Strawberry might actually die, the Authon half glanced after the fleeing bandits, spared a second to ensure those unconscious were yet so and then walked calmly up behind Nyarane.

    If naught else, it was becoming fair clear that he was not likely to actually hurt her. Though he knew of course neither that the Jewel had caused her sudden invulnerability, or that Strawberry had just stolen it back.

    Deciding that dealing with trolls might in fact have proven rather easier, to comprehend at least, Tirindo grasped Nyarane's head in both of his hands. He stood directly behind her and thus his fingers, archer's fingers, strong fingers, found their way toward the Elleth's pretty eyeballs. He held his breath and exuded a firm point of pressure with each thumb against Rane's eyes.

    If it managed no more impact than in fact a heavy tool had made upon her temple, still the move might conjure a distraction, a means of at least diverting Rane's wrath unto him. The optical nerve sat right behind the Elleth's shining sinister eye pools. Pressure, just enough, should cause her to faint. For at least a minute. If he was lucky. But it had been a rather trying day. To say the least.

    Every impulse in his body screamed against his doing anything too violent. Etelehto would never forgive him. He would never forgive himself.

    Let alone how he might explain matters back at Ost-Halatir, of his murdering the Maethor if things, stars forbid, came further out of hand.

  39. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #39

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane


    Strawberry
    was starting to feel lightheaded and could no longer breathe. She focused as much energy as she could spare on yanking the chain from around Rane's neck. She had no idea if it worked though, because everything seemed to be fading to blackness that she couldn't see through, as she was on the verge of unconsciousness. She let her eyes close and struggled in vain for another breath. One thought remained in her mind as she was getting nearer to blacking out, and that was that she must get the jewel off of the elf, otherwise she would probably die, and she was very much opposed to dying.

    Finally, she found that she was coughing and gasping for breath. Her throat hurt but she was breathing again. Upon realizing this, she took in a deep gulp of air and opened her eyes, finding that she could see again; that the blackness had cleared away from her vision. There was a weight on her too, and she saw that it was the elf, who was now unconscious. As feeling returned to her limbs, she felt something in her hand and tangled around her fingers. She had got the necklace, she realized with relief. Weakly, she lifted her hand and looked at what was in it, just to be sure. It was, in fact, the necklace, with the jewel partly showing through a gap in the cloth.

    With some effort, she attempted to shove Rane off of her and sit up, with her breaths coming in ragged gulps but she was quickly recovering now that she was able to breathe again. She looked up at the other elf but didn't know what to say, or if she could talk just yet anyway. After dragging herself a little away from Rane, she stayed where she was while she recovered, and kept her grip tight around the cloth-wrapped jewel.

    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  40. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #40


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure


    The Elleth's fall from conscious deed filled her Noldo comrade with as much relief as it inspired new concern. Slowly he circled the two, now separated, females.

    "I have known her some six thousand years," he disclosed, in troubled and halting Westron, closing in on Strawberry. "True she has an impish soul and playful nature. Never though have I known her to ... Except for the once," he corrected, with a slight flutter of most distasteful recollection, "never have I else known her to behave with such hunger for violence. And that .. other occasion .. saw .. Extenuating circumstances ..."

    The girl looked to be raw from her recent experience. So slight and young of face, that she might seem indeed innocent. But the Authon could not overlook the damage done. As far as he could reason there was one common denominator.

    The bandits. Nyarane. This was no mere mortal child. There were other things at work here. And he was beyond taking things as they might seem to be. Drawing one hand to the quiver at his shoulder, Tirindo laid arrow unto bow.

    The gesture was not swift, but slow, seamless as the ever-reaching Sky. Reluctance coloured his hesitation, and the Elf's approach entire was as though he neared an injured serpent. Still, the feathered missile rose in its careful aim. Grey eyes hardened and the ancient features of the ageless face found cold, unwelcome focus which he drove upon the girl. A creak of pressure indicated the bend of the bow, the taut nerves of he who held it.

    "You shall make words of some explanation," he assured her. "In the understanding that to speak not or untruths now will not go so well for you."

    There had been sorcerors unearthed in the Northern Reaches of Angmar. They had declared war on all Eriador. And what Tirindo had seen thus far, he was not discounting a single possibility.

    "Reveal what you took of her !" he demanded, the grey of his eyes freezing from most into cold stone, "lest I else put an arrow in you, and seize up the truth myself from your remains ! Tell me ! I give you one opportunity alone"

    Who knew that the fate of the missing Elf scout was not in fact embroiled with whatever had affected Nyarane. Tirindo was not like to cut down a lone child lost in forces far beyond her control, but in the face of much uncertain and more concerning evidence .. He had no choice. It was down to her now

    He only hoped the Girl would speak before he was forced toward fell repurcussions they would all regret after. This had now advanced well far enough from the bounds within which he was comfortable.

  41. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #41

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane


    Strawberry
    was actually rather wishing the elves had not gotten involved at all. She was sure she would have gotten free from the bandits on her own, given the chance. But now they were involved, and she was facing the point of an arrow. This was definitely not how she had intended to spend her evening, although she couldn't say that this sort of situation was unfamiliar to her.

    Her green eyes lifted up to gaze into the elf's grey eyes. There was no doubt that he was deadly serious. She swallowed a bit dryly and swiftly gathered her thoughts, trying to think out the best way to explain this thing before she would begin speaking. The elf's Westron might not be perfect but she understood him well enough. Luckily, she had already been planning to give him some explanation, once she got the jewel away from his friend. Now, she was only trying to get a bit of her breath back before she began talking.

    Moving her hands up slowly in a gesture of surrender while still lying where she was on the ground, she hoped he would understand she was trying to get her breathing back to normal before beginning to explain. She was reluctant to show the jewel that she took from the other elf..what if he grabbed it and she had to go through it all over again? But the arrow pointed at her face convinced her to let the cloth fall aside just enough that he could see a part of the jewel.

    "She took this from me." She began, disliking how hoarse her voice sounded, but she cleared her throat and continued, without giving herself a chance to be astonished at the mention of him knowing the other for six thousand years. "It.. was wrapped in a cloth.. for a good reason, hidden away where few could find it." She frowned a bit. "It's very dangerous, full of some dark magic that corrupts anyone who touches it..which is why I am not touching it directly. But she put it on a chain, hanging..right over her heart.." She paused, hoping very much that he wouldn't decide this was a lie, because it really was the truth.

    During that pause, she quickly debated within herself whether to add anything else about it, and decided to add a little more. "It was not easy..getting this thing away from the evil man of Rhun, who first possessed it, but I did, for safekeeping. And since then I have kept it hidden in the depths of my bag, to keep it safe from others so that they wouldn't... well, do what she did..." Hopefully, that explanation was good enough. It was the truth, maybe without every detail but it was still the truth, nonetheless.

    With a brief glance toward the unconscious one, she looked back at him before adding,
    "I think she will be back to herself, when she wakes..although I can't be sure. At any rate, the power she was getting from the jewel has apparently gone from her, so I'd think that it's influence would also be gone. I have no idea if she'll remember what happened or not, though." She really had no idea about this stuff, but it seemed logical to assume that would be the case. She was also glad to hear that her voice sounded more normal now. It was still a little scratchy, but hopefully that wouldn't last long.

    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  42. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #42


    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    With Nyarane. And Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure

    Slow she moved, and noticeably in the throes still of her recent malady. When Strawberry raised her hands, a gesture of compliance, Tirindo was hard pressed to keep from lowering his guard. Yet he held a while longer, craving knowledge more than faith by now.

    And in the very first of sentences came enough for the Elf to determine the girl's truth. 'She took this from me ...'

    Six thousand or so years, yes, he had been acquainted with Nyarane, and mayhaps the weary understanding spoke loudly enough. Of course the Elleth had taken what was not hers. It was a habit of hers, and one that even her Nolmenor had failed to wring out of her. But that was not the sole reason that Tirindo believed the mortal's tale.

    "That, I do think I saw in your bag, when I searched it," he revealed now. "Nyarane is a magpie where it comes to pretty things, alas. She should not have removed it. But there our people have a history of acting foolish for the sake of wondrous jewels."

    He lowered the bow, stowed the arrow in its quiver instead of in the girl, and nudged the girl's bag toward her.

    "There was water in there also," he recalled, still stern but calmer now. For soft was not his way, though neither was needless cruelty. "You should really drink."

    Her wild tale he considered, privately, without giving up any indication whether he believed it all. If he had not seen the recent anarchy himself, of course, he would not have been like to receive such an account with anything more than pity for the foolish storyteller. Now, however .. What to do now ?

    "You do not trust easy, Strawberry-girl. Neither is it my tendency," he crouched at his haunches in an effort to appear less tall and intimidating. It was not his practiced approach toward conversation. "Perhaps I should know no more of this gem save that it is sure proven perilous. I have to ask nonetheless, whether wandering in bad lands alone is the best means of safeguarding anything so craved. It would be remiss for us to not offer escort toward some safer clime. It is the least she can do .."

    He watched to judge how the girl would react to such an offer. He was obliged to propose it nonetheless. It was the right thing to do.

    "I could tell you all that she has suffered in her long life, and still persevered," he sighed, with eyes now turned on his comrade. "But I think like you, she is a survivor. At any cost .."

    The Authon picked up the pieces of hurled and discarded food, lest they attract more unwelcome company. Then resumed his full height.

    "Might be that she believed she would guard it, from everyone else but her ?" Tirindo mused, though whether he was trying to think better of his friend's horrendous actions or to highlight she was not so different from the mortal at all ... It might have been either motive. Or both.

    "My name is Tirindo Aiwenarion" he admitted, at last. "Though Elves collect names as the years pass by. Names that others give us, names that define us. Strawberry is a fair name."
    Last edited by Ercassie; 11/Oct/2016 at 12:17 PM.

  43. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #43


    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane


    Strawberry
    was incredibly relieved when the elf lowered his bow, and the arrow was returned to its quiver. At least the immediate danger was past, but of course she knew it wouldn't be any trouble for the arrow to come back out. But she didn't intend to give him a reason to do that. As her bag was slid closer to her, she gladly pulled it nearly into her lap, and took out one of her canteens, while the jewel vanished into the depths of her bag. Whether it was returned to the same place it started in, or stowed in some other spot, one would have to search the bag again to find out. She was actually quite glad to have the jewel put away, and not be holding it. She didn't quite trust that having it wrapped in a cloth was good enough, and she didn't want to risk herself being affected by its dark power.

    After taking a few long drinks of water, her throat began to feel better. She watched the elf the entire time, although she may not look like she was. She was pretty good at watching from the corner of her eye, or noticing things without seeming like she had seen them. His words were quite true, she had to admit. She didn't trust anyone very quickly. But then, when one has been hunted and pursued for over a year, she supposed it came rather natural to not trust someone that you meet upon the road. They could be working with the men pursuing her, for all she knew. Although she much doubted that elves would have got involved in that sort of thing.. whatever it was.

    However, she found it relieving to hear him say he didn't want to know anything more about that jewel. At least one of the two elves had some sense, although she refrained from commenting about that. She also refrained from mentioning that she had a few other items that she had taken upon herself to safeguard, having found such items in the possession of those who were not responsible or trustworthy enough to have the item. She decided, in agreement with what he said, the less he knew about that stuff, the better off they all were. But she did feel like she ought to comment on the thing he said about her traveling in an unsafe place.
    "I don't know this land. How was I to know it was 'bad lands', as you put it? It's a road. Those are supposed to be safe, are they not? Otherwise I might get lost in the wild, or come upon some other more deadly thing that I could not win against. Bandits..I'm used to those. They're everywhere, and even more common where I come from. I'd rather face an entire band of them than run into a troll or stumble upon a goblin hole." She pointed out, while also unintentionally hinting that she had traveled from very far away.

    But since he was making an offer to escort her somewhere, she considered that for a moment. It seemed like a waste of the elves' time and efforts, and she actually was by this point a little tired of dealing with them, but she had a slight suspicion that maybe his offer wasn't so optional. She shrugged slightly. "I was heading for wherever this road leads. If there is a town, I would go there." She didn't really thing she needed any escort but if they were insistent, then maybe there was a town not far away, they could walk with her that far if it made them feel like they were helping or something. Hearing his words about his friend, she silently disagreed. She was pretty sure she only intended to keep it for herself, because it was a pretty jewel. Strawberry understood that, she often felt the same about jewels and shiny things. In that regard, she realized that she and Rane were actually quite similar. But that didn't mean she was ready to become instant friends with her, considering the elf just tried to kill her.

    Tirindo's introduction brought her back out of her thoughts and back to what he was saying.
    "Tiredno?" She repeated, getting it a bit wrong, as the elvish names often sounded a bit odd to her and she often had difficulty pronouncing unfamiliar words and names. She wasn't quite sure if she ought to say thanks to his comment about her 'name' or not, but she thought over it for a moment. A fair name? She wondered what exactly that meant. She often got odd looks if ever anyone heard that she was called by the name of a fruit. But it was better than 'Red'. After thinking over this for a moment, she recalled that she had left her food by the fire, on a stone that would keep it warm. She moved toward the fire now, to see if it was still there or if he had discarded it with the rest, when he cleaned up the discarded foods.

    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 11/Oct/2016 at 05:27 PM.
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  44. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #44


    Nyarane
    Maethor

    with Tirindo & Strawberry Fields Forever

    Into the Darkness I


    Her blue eyes shone like the bright sky overhead as Rane opened her eyelids and started to regain her bearings slowly. It was the next morn already. Her neck felt stiff and she started to move her feet, legs, arms and fingers, feeling all her limbs still intact and functioning although she'd felt as though she had been trampled by a herd of oliphaunts. Where am I? she wondered to herself. She could hear a man's voice and a little girl's voice nearby. Nyaramo? she called out in Sindarin. Or was that her Master's voice she heard. Nolmener? Is it time for class already? She asked out loud in Quenyan this time. Maybe her Master was teaching an efling at the moment as was his wont. Rane opened and shut her eyes countless times while staring into the sky. She felt hungry and drained and jaded. She felt that she had been talking to someone. A voice. An evil voice. But was it evil? She felt a sense of accomplishment suddenly. But why? What had she done recently to justify that feeling?

    Her mind throbbed and she rolled over on the ground floor. Once. Her messy bangs and unruffled golden locks was now the color of gold and brown but she did not know. The two voices kept on going. Why couldn't she ascertain who they were? She turned her neck towards the source of the noise but found out her vision was blurry. Strange. She said to herself. She looked up again to the bright sky and then again towards the two voices. Blurred vision. Again. Rane rubbed her eyes hard to no avail. She sighed in exasperation and decided to just shut her eyes for now and center her mind to calmness. Nolmener, if my brother asks of me please tell him I'm not to be disturbed. She said out loud. Rane rested both her arms akin to a cross over her chest and breathed in deeply. She hoped her vision would come back to normal soon.
    Last edited by Aranadhel; 12/Oct/2016 at 02:32 AM.

  45. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #45



    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    and Camando, the Missing Scout
    With Nyarane and Strawberry
    In the company of thieves ..
    A mini Guard Adventure



    The Authon did not rise to the girl's retort. He was well used to being disagreed with and the more sensible the suggestions he made, it seemed the more that folk younger than he would insist on protesting. To prove they could ? To prove they were brave enough or willing to question what was told ... He had heard all manner of justifications. The end result was same; and he refused to spend any more of his life debating points he did not care much to consider in the first place.

    "You are very defensive," was his observation. "Typically that would suggest you have something to hide, though that point is moot now. Nonetheless, we two had cause to come out unto such lands far from any law or order; and it may surprise you to learn that this cause never even considered the likelihood of you. If you do not bring us trouble we shall return the favour. I do not intend to kidnap you against your will."

    He spoke as honestly as ever he had, troubling over if he should try to be consoling. It was not his way to baby anybody, though he was not cruel. And always, always he was truthful. This girl seemed like to suspect a lie though, irrespective of what he spoke. He dared not imagine what had hardened one so young.

    His words were haltingly presented and overly careful. So might be she thought him to be quite patronising or speaking down to her, when it could not have been further from the facts. He was merely so very unpracticed. Might be he had offered her some insult in a subtle means he had never intended. But there was naught he could do about that.

    "Tiredno" he smiled at her misinterpretation of the name. At least he was not the only student here of foreign tongues. "It is close enough," he accepted.

    Night further assaulted their small gathering from therein and the Noldo turned his attention and eyes both upon the restrained bandits. Those who Rane had named as 'Numenoreans'. He heard Strawberry making a move to conclude her disrupted meal, and he did not halt her. Between the horses, the prisoners, and the prone form of Nyarane herself, he had much to keep him alert. Strangely his appetite proved quite evasive.

    The Mortal, if she was wise, would take this opportunity to rest and recover from her injuries and the day's events. While there were those about her here to assist against any further bandit activity. But then, when were the young ever wise ... ?



    Dawn found the Authon amazed, if naught else, by the sight of their lost scout, Camando, limping up toward the motley crew of a camp. Tirindo was disguising the ground where the escaped bandits had been forced to bury their weapons. He stopped, and stood tall to greet the other Elf.

    "My horse," the younger shook his head, in grievous woe and everyday Sindarin. "A Werewolf ! If you can believe that .. I did think he would devour me also, but trolls ventured abroad, come sundown, and chased him from finishing his meal." The fair-headed soldier cast a better stock of things and flicked his own mask of amazement toward Tirindo. "Dare I ask ?" he breathed.

    The Authon shook his head, resolutely, with a fell look about his features as trolls were even mentioned. "You would never believe me if I should tell you in truth !" he sighed. "Are you harmed ?"

    "No thanks to your brave rescue party," Camando laughed, though not with heart, and he was clearly wearing a brave front.

    Nyarane's awakening did little to cheer Tirindo, although Camando gazed upon the fair maid with a greater delight. He did not know the Maethor as well as the Authon did. He did not know she now spoke to the dead, and to the long since departed.

    "You have rescued somebody instead of me," Camando spied Strawberry.

    Tirindo did not answer, but had turned to the mortal girl now himself.

    "I made offer of an escort to you, and it was but the proposal of assistance. Now though I shall have to see Nyarane safe back to Imladris, that Lord Elrond may aide my friend recover from what clearly ails her. It would do you credit if you were to accompany us, impart what you know of the Jewel to one who is counted wise, lest Nyarane be else unable to be properly recovered.

    I do understand however that it was her own actions which led her to this misfortune. I do not blame you and shall not hold you responsible.

    I should say though that the Last Homely House allows no evil to abide there. You would be safe to recover from your own injuries, and take up rest and fresh resources, if you are in no great hurry to be on your way. An escort would happily accompany you from the valley then wherever you might like to travel from there.

    Break your fast and make decision.
    " he left her to mull over the update. He had a decision of his own to make, standing over the two still bound prisoners (the apparently far abroad black Numenoreans).

    He could not yet bring himself to speak to Nyarane. She blinked as though she did not see and he could not comprehend how. What he had been forced to do to her should have rendered the maid only momentarily unconscious.

    This must be the effect of the Jewel she had seized. And if he spoke at all to her it would involve 'I told you so's', as regard to the consequences of theft. She hardly seemed prepared to register that fact as was. He would save it for later.

    "Sit down," he told Camando, "Before you fall down. Where did you last see this Werewolf .."

    He spoke with his fellow Elf in Sindarin, so as to not alarm Strawberry.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 13/Oct/2016 at 06:34 AM.

  46. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #46

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane, and Camando


    Strawberry hardly slept at all, and spent most of the night thinking over all that had happened to day, and listening to the sounds of the night. If she slept, it was a very light sleep that she woke from too easily. Before lying down to sleep, she had suggested that 'Tiredno' might cover his friend with a blanket, mentioning that it could get a little bit chilly at night. She wrapped her own blanket around herself when she laid down, but she couldn't seem to relax enough to actually sleep very well. It wasn't so much that she didn't trust the company that she was with, but more that she was so used to being alert and listening for danger, it was just a habit for her.

    When dawn finally came, she watched the stars fade from the gradually lightening sky. Hearing noises, she lifted her head and looked to see what was happening. 'Tiredno' was covering tracks on the ground, so who's footsteps were those that she heard approaching? She turned her head to see who was approaching, but before she had decided if she ought to warn Tirindo of the approaching stranger, he started speaking to him in their elvish language. Strawberry had no idea what they were saying, but they seemed friendly and apparently knew each other, so she stayed where she was and probably appeared as if she were still asleep.

    Then she heard Nyarane, as Tirindohad called her, speaking as she woke up. Strawberry felt a bit tense as Nyarane awakened, and wondered if she was going to resume her attack on her. But, instead she was speaking in elvish as well, and sounded confused. After listening to her for a moment, Strawberry sat up and looked over at her. She looked like she'd gone back to sleep. She glanced over at the other two, the stranger apparently just now noticing her, and she listened quietly to what Tirindo said to her.

    Since he said to have breakfast, Strawberry looked around to see what was available to eat while she thought over the stuff he had said. She glanced briefly down at her worn shoes, knowing they wouldn't last much longer. She didn't really need to think over this decision anyway, as she already knew her decision but was only wondering how he would take it. Also, she was wondering about this other guy, and who he might be. And did he speak in Westron or only in elvish? She glanced him over thoughtfully while she got something to eat, and wished she knew their language so she would know what they were saying.

    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 17/Oct/2016 at 05:14 AM. Reason: fixing double post
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  47. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #47


    Trouble. On the Horizon.

    His prey's progress was laboured, owing to the damaged limb. It limped. It travelled now on foot. If the Werewolf had not devoured much of the horse's carcass, before the Troll arrived, then the Elf would never have been able to wriggle free of the pinning weight .. with even then, little time to spare. The hungry troll startled the smaller predator, mid-meal, and kept it at bay as they two fought growling battles of dominance over who should claim the meat.

    The Elf had made escape under the growing cover of darkness, grieving for his already dead horse but relieved in equal measure to have not shared it's unhappy fate. At least .. not yet. For dawn had risen and though the Troll had long ago retreated to its lair, remnants of the horse between its gargantuan teeth, the Werewolf was not quite ready to return home, nor to give up on the prospect of an injured, weak and isolated Elf, lost in the lone lands. That sort of a sorry situation was simply begging to be put out of its misery.

    And so the Werewolf had picked the Elf's trail. It had seemed to suspect this and scrambled across various terrain, including a river, hoping to lose the relentless pursuit. But the longer that the Were wasted in chasing his dessert, the more determined he was that it should not be time wasted.

    When he observed the distant fire, he knew that the Elf would head straight for it, and his instincts did not fail him. There was a small group there gathered, and the Werewolf's eyes glittered like candles unobserved, as he counted up the prizes to be had. He retreated, summoning his brethren, and commenced their new advance. The prospect of a delightful breakfast bred a keen desire within each. But their assault upon the camp proper had been diverted, when it had been noted that a number of Two Legs had fled the campfire. They (the fleeing bandits) had run right into a far worse peril than that which they fled. And gluttony consumed the pack of Weres, but also slowed them down.

    There were a half dozen Werewolves that had answered the first's howling summons. Seven in total. But they were enough. And they were still, they were ever, as hungry for the kill as for the food after. It was daylight now, and no trolls likely to disturb them. Moreover, they had travelled some distance from the Ettenmoors, and ended up in further Lone Lands. Near a neglected dust road and a line of withered, wind-contorted trees. Under cover of these trees they loitered, eyeing the prime moment to strike ...





    Tirindo Aiwenarion, Authon
    and Camando, the now no longer Missing Scout
    With Nyarane and Strawberry
    Isolated Road
    A mini Guard Adventure


    The horses noted the unsavoury scent first. The Elves were not far behind them in this growing discomfort, but that Tirindo had a lot on his mind, and Camando was suitably curious of the strange mortal girl and the strange, forlorn Elleth.

    But as the (still bound) pair of Black Numenoreans awoke, and started calling in their exotic tongue for Strawberry to share her breakfast with them, the Weres too moved with similar thought. They broke from the tree line in a wild rush, meant to discourage and disperse their prey.

    The two Elf's horses stamped and panicked, Tirindo stood up, and glanced with concern from their approaching peril to their own very small pocket of defense. With a cursed grunt, he decided upon Camando's afflicted leg lessening his skill in swordplay. Pressing his bow and a swift shared gift of a half quiver to the use of his comrade therefore, the Noldo drew his sword, his longtime now secondary weapon, and bade Camando to draw the girls and horses close to the small fire.

    Those dead bandits that had not been buried now made the Weres' mouths water, as much as did the few two-legs still breathing. The two writhing prisoners renewed their efforts to escape the teasing coil of the Elvish knots.

    "There are seven !" Camando groaned, in horror, and in easy Westron. Being that much younger and far more familiar with Mortals, his speech made Tirindo's earlier efforts seem that much more wooden. The Authon rounded a stern glare upon the Aphador, who swallowed, embarrassed. "There was only the one of them before .." the fairer Elf muttered, half to himself.

    "This time, do not run," his superior observed, furious that the scout had unwittingly put them all in danger. True, their missive had been to locate and safeguard him in the return home. But much has happened to their small company since that optimistic outset, and now they stood not so near prepared as they might have been, to face such a foe. "They favour a chase as much as a kill, and shall try to pick us apart and take each down alone," he tried to share what little he knew of Werewolves that would help rather than terrify their group.

    For whatever little good that might do them. This was far from a capable Elvish scouting party at his back. And that was a whole lot of teeth and claws barrelling straight for them ..
    Last edited by Ercassie; 18/Nov/2016 at 01:47 AM. Reason: Correcting name spelling

  48. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #48



    Nyarane
    Maethor

    Into the Darkness II


    Rane opened her eyes and found herself floating off the white marbled floor. *How could this be?* She thought to herself. Her blue eyes darted left and right and to her amazement and disbelief she realised that she was surrounded on all sides by walls of coloured rainbow which gleamed like starlight and diamonds.

    *Where am I?!* She screamed but she could not hear her own voice.

    **You are in the Halls of Mandos, child** A serene cold voice permeated in her mind. Rane gasped in shock and surprise as she was released from suspended animation and landed her feet on the cold hard floor. *Mandos?* she asked in her mind where she could hear her voice, which she found quite disconcerting to say the least. *The Vala of Doom?* A loud eerie laughter echoed in her mind. Rane had to shut both her ears using her hands. *Stop it! stop it!* She pleaded.

    Silence. Rane held her breath and released. Repeatedly. She was panicking. If she had remembered the stories of Nolmener her Master, he had mentioned regarding the Doom of the Noldor prophesised by the Vala named Namo. ** Yes, that is one of my many names, child ** Rane balled her fists and searched around the infinite walls for an exit. ** You are safe here, daughter of Quendi** Rane snorted out loud and wanted to take a step forward but she could not move. ** Where are you rushing off to, child?** The Vala's voice sounded playful and cheeky all of a sudden but Rane was having none of it. *Am I dead?!* She asked in her mind. **No, child. You were possessed by an evil entity and now your fea is being healed by me as we speak**

    *I was possessed? By what? That stupid green crystal?* She laughed in her mind. *Rubbish!* She exclaimed to the Vala. ** You do not grasp the full power that was imbued in that crystal by my fallen brethren, Melkor. It should have not been discovered by the Edain but instead should have been destroyed back in the War of Wrath!** The Vala boomed in her mind. Rane had the audacity to shudder and close her eyes at the mention of Morgoth's name. ** I know the pain that you have endured, child. Rest now and be at peace. When the time is right I will release you back to Arda**

    Rane never heard Namo's last sentence as she was put to sleep instantly.

  49. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #49

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane, and Camando


    Strawberry glanced toward the horses as they began to act nervous. She frowned at this. They'd been fine all this time, and now suddenly they were acting like something was frightening them. What could it be? Strawberry cast her gaze around the edges of the forest around them. She wished she could see as far as the elves surely could, but she couldn't help that. She would have to make do with the human sight that she had. It had always served her well enough before.

    Next the remaining two bandits began to call out in their language, but she had no idea what they were saying. They seemed to be talking to her, but she ignored them and kept staring out into the darkness, straining to see anything that might be moving. Suddenly, without warning, she saw what had made the horses uneasy. Something was rushing toward them, and she swiftly drew her dagger, the one that was her usual go-to weapon. Then, as the elves drew their weapons and 'Tiredno' indicated for the new guy to guard her and the other girl, Strawberry grabbed a long, sturdy branch out of the fire, one end a burning ember still.

    She was surprised to hear the new elf speak in Westron, he seemed much better at it than Tirindo, and she was glad for that, but now it wasn't time to have a conversation. She watched the wolves running at them, and took a deep breath to prepare herself. She'd fought plenty of things before, including wolves..but not werewolves. She wondered if they were much different, and hoped not. While new guy would be busy using his friend's bow and arrows, and Tirindo would be using his sword, Strawberry had only a dagger.. so she would have to get much closer to the things so that she could kill them. She hoped, however, that her burning branch would be able to do some good, since she knew that regular wolves usually fear fire. With any luck, the four of them would survive this ordeal, and maybe after the werewolves were dealt with, Strawberry could slip away unnoticed while the elves were busy doing other things...

    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 02/Nov/2016 at 04:43 PM.
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  50. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #50


    Nyarane
    Maethor

    Into the Darkness III

    *Wake up, child* A soft voice commanded. Rane opened her eyelids slowly and her light blue iris expanded considerably with the lighting in Mandos' Halls. She blinked her eyes a few times and found herself on a soft feather mat. She was dressed in a light blue long dress, the color matching her eyes. On her right side there was a side table with refreshments. Rane suddenly felt thirsty and took a sip from the stainless steel glass. The liquid that went down her throat rejuvenated her spirit instantaneously. She took a couple more sips then gorged on the food that encompassed a fruit tart, a roast beef sandwich and a bowl of potato and leek soup with a side of rye bread.

    She never realised another Being standing by her left side the whole time she was concentrating on her meal. Rane truly enjoyed her food as she felt enlightened and light hearted with each bite. Within minutes the plate was empty and she chugged down the rest of her drink with ease. Feeling tremendously full all of a sudden she then realised that she now was no longer seated on her mat but instead she was now standing and faced the Vala of Death.

    *I hope the menu was to your liking, my child* the Vala sounded pleased. Rane swore on her immortal life that she never thought Namo would be like this. Would sound like this. Would act like this! *Surprised are you, Nyarane daughter of Nyarnwe?* the Vala now sounded amused. Rane could not come up with an answer so she merely nodded rather meekly.

    *I release you now from my care, daughter of the Quendi. Your fea and hroa I have fixed to its rightful state and nature. Your friends will need your help soon, I believe.* the Vala snorted. Rane could only raise her eyebrow. *We shall meet again someday, Nyarane. Worry not about your parents, twin brother and your Master. You will be fine* Namo said with quiet authority in his tone.

    Her vision then went blank.

    **************
    Last edited by Aranadhel; 13/Nov/2016 at 09:04 PM.

  51. Ercassie's Avatar
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    #51

    .

    Tirindo Aiwenarion and Camando
    with Nyarane and Strawberry
    Facing fur and fangs ...


    The fence of dark, leafless trees cast a line of sinister silhouettes, frozen in the lack of wind but backlit quite dramatic against the colourless light of bleached white morn. Such lacklustre effort of the slovenly sunstar aroused no warmth to suggest that the day was soon to come. Indeed, so pitiless a chill seeped cruelly into the Elf's bones, that it might as easily have been twilight encroaching about their camp. But there came no soft explosion of muted or mellow hues to soothe the world toward sweet slumber. Instead seven smudges of most vile shadow slowly attained proper shape .. and an overwhelming tide of stink, which accredited the shiver at Tirindo's spine in woeful recognition of their vile foe.

    Raised up to know adulthood within the blessed realm, Tirindo looked still with keen eyes first expecting for wonder and bountiful things. Observing instead the bristled brutes which bled in paths of wanton hate toward him, the Noldo wished fervently that he had his bow in hand. There was a certain neatness to archery, that he far preferred to other forms of combat. It felt more so an exercise in hand-to-eye coordination, rather than a conscious attempt to conclude a living, breathing thing. Surgical precision leant his Elvish eye a calm, composed approach to any threat. An arrow's impact was effective and swift, when operated artfully, subtle in its suitability to clandestine and camouflage situations, strong and unavoidable when embarked in a sizeable volley .. Most favourable of all its merits, he could oft dissuade an assault from ever occurring, with only a well-trained finger to warn an antagonist of due consequence. The wise would not test an Elf's ability with such a weapon.

    This day though his hands grasped a sword, and he sighed. And if he glanced back wistfully at the others of the small camp, it was that he already regretted his decision. But he could not change even his own mind. It was the sensible solution, even if he liked it not. He liked neither the prospect of these heinous predators, though surely one distasteful aspect would eliminate all concern for the other.

    Camando, by contrast, had been rendered to some point of revered shock, to hold within his mere hands the stern Authon's treasured bow .. The Aphador strung it swiftly as he had been taught of such a tool, checked the remainder of arrows sitting in the quiver, and eyed the advance of slavering Werewolves. Noting that the Mortal girl had gathered up a flaming brand from their small fire, his eyes first widened, surprised, before he nodded once, and approvingly. Although the fact that she too had observed the ferocious onslaught meant that the Weres were rather closer now.

    "Anything with that much fur will dislike fire," the young scout applauded Strawberry's swift thinking. Until the squirming clamour of their prisoners made him frown. The Authon had begun to explain quite what a series of strange events had unfolded, but then this latest had added to the fray.


    The Authon had ventured out some feet to meet the snarling rush of beasts alone. It seemed as though the mere notion that he was not afeared of them may somehow change their minds. They slowed not their pace however, almost their advance was driven further with inflated confidence by his choice to stand so purposely vulnerable.

    The snarling pack flung clods of turf up beneath their curved claws, tearing through the feathered grass upon all fours. Yet each bound was awarded far greater impetus by the powerful muscles of their front haunches. The swiftest Were was not the smartest, and it leapt in want rather than thought at the tall, raven-haired Noldo. Swagger in its place upon the food chain saw the beast waste no mind on its own defence. The soft underbelly of its weight reared high as the Were's mighty maw fell open, a showcase of terror that might have severed a novice from his will. To observe such a wall of sharp, serrated fangs closing upon the waiting meat .. But this Elf cowered not. This was not the first time he had spied such dread so close to hand. Seizing the sword base in both his hands, Tirindo closed both stone-grey eyes to slow his breathing, blind himself from fear, and in the last flicker of heartbeat, brought up a sure steel handshake to seek out the heart in the now opened chest of his attacker.

    He stepped back in disgust as the creature collapsed, a puddle of spilt entrails and oozing slick of thick, black blood. It slathered the grass, and the Elf grieved such gross infestation of Yavanna's fair charms. Even the inky stain that now slid down his fair tempered blade displeased him, but there was too little point in tending to that now. Not with so many other methods of impending death so nigh.

    Raising sights to meet the second, the Authon saw it fall to a shuddered stop. An arrow, no doubt courtesy of Camando, was planted firmly between two fluid eyes. As a flaming torch fades from sight down a fathomless drop hole, so too did life depart from the Were. It's irises charred to a deep shade of death undeniable. And Tirindo saw with annoyance that their foes were veering left and right of this obstacle, to reach the more venerable hoard of meat staked out beyond - the camp.

    Having garnered an early success, Camando fell into an easy rhythm of ready, release. His presumption that all would be felled so easily however was a lesson harder learnt. The second arrow punched through the ear of one advancing Were, and though it shook its massive head and unleaded an unholy roar, it did not break pace. Panicked, the Aphador sent a speedy third shaft to strengthen his quarrel, and this staked a place of pain in the same Were's left foreleg.

    It slowed but did not yet stop. Closer came the confounding alarm, the Weres advancing where they never should have managed. One was delayed by Tirindo who swiped out and maimed the pace of a one as it sought to bypass him, and his small shield of two fallen Weres. But it limped on. And still there were five coming at the small camp's nucleus. Two of those limping, all of them determined.

    A parade of arrows sprinted from Camando's flurried fingers, their points hitting home about the grass the angered aggressor flattened. One paw was impaled, yet again it pushed on through the agony. And the Aphador found he had spent all the resources in the officer's quiver.

    Bereft of all better means of distraction, the blonde scout dragged at the ropes binding their prisoners. As is the cunning of elf rope, those bonds which the Mortals had long strained against, separated with apparent ease at the Elf's need. Both Men scrambled without waiting to assume the cause for their release, immediately grabbing the attention of the Weres. One Black Numenorean immediately took to his heels and chanced to flee, while the other dove upon his knees to where he had seen the Bandits recently forced to bury all their knives. He started digging up the soil with as much enthusiasm as the others had not shown in the same task the night before.

    Two Weres diverted at this from sights on the main camp to instead chase the fleeing/released prisoner. The greater of these two leapt unto the back of the unfortunate Man, forcing his face down to flounder in unhappy embrace with the earth. Searing claws raked through his clothes in seconds, piercing through to puncture essential organs; the fallen prisoner's limbs contorted. Blood and spittle frothed about his mouth as his hands clawed now at thin air. It was not clear whether he lived yet or whether this was an involuntary spasm. The smaller Were was seen off regardless, as his more ferocious comrade made well clear that this prize would not be shared. With a low growl reminiscent of sullen thunder, the loser of that short race turned back to pass a fellow Were who was dragging at the frantic digging Man now from his desperate goal. Snagged by vice like teeth around his ankle, this second prisoner was hauled further from all chances to defend himself, much less to flee. The Were rolled the Man onto his back and plunged relentless snapping teeth to trawl through sinew and muscle. The Man's screams sang a song of heartbreak in his distant language, but there was no cause for translation. All too soon he was dead.

    Those remaining Weres not felled or already eating closed in upon the living meat that readied, each Were sizing up a meal for itself. There were three of the violent brutes remaining, not to mention two more who would soon rejoin the hunt as soon as they were convinced their chew toys were made still. Camando brandished Tirindo's great (though empty) bow before him in a last resort to hold his ground, as he edged more perilously closer to where the lastly seized prisoner had unearthed the prospect of further weapons, buried still deep in the dirt.

    The Authon had stolen the attention of one of the slower Weres, as he rushed back to rejoin his companions, hoping that the two girls might be fortunate enough to hold their ground meanwhile. The two males of their party had failed to arrest all of the danger which now circled them and closed in. Ever closer.

    Strawberry had proven that she should never be underestimated. They might do well for themselves. He could but hope.




    **2 Werewolves are properly dead, a third is now engaged in fighting with Tirindo. 2 others remain alive but these two are both limping/currently eating the dead prisoners, and a final 2 further Weres are still utterly unharmed and coming straight at you. So that's a total of four altogether left at large which you guys need to incapacitate. If you get into trouble finishing them, I'll help to end it after.
    Last edited by Ercassie; 29/Nov/2016 at 08:49 AM. Reason: Wrongly assumed Nyarane was waking up. Corrected as per discussion with Aranadhel

  52. Rainelle Hérandil's Avatar
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    #52

    Strawberry - with Tirindo and Nyarane, and Camando








    Strawberry was glad to see two of the beasts go down quickly. Unfortunately, the rest of them didn't die as easily. She watched a little nervously as the new guy shot at the wolf and his arrows missed. Then the two last prisoners got freed and, like idiots, one ran while the other tried to dig up the weapons that they'd buried... as if there was any chance he might dig one up in enough time to actually use it before he was killed. She shook her head a bit as the two black Numenorians were slaughtered in a very short amount of time. At least none of this group of bandits would ever bother anyone again.

    She noticed that Rane had finally awakened, but she hadn't shown any signs of being able to see or fight, yet. So it was going to be up to the elves and Strawberry to keep the wolves from making her part of their dinner. She adjusted her grip on the branch in her left hand while glancing briefly at the dagger in her right hand to make sure it was the one that she wanted. Not really caring much if the elves thought well of her decision to grab the burning branch, she waited for the werewolves to get within fighting distance of her and hoped they would be about like the wolves she had killed in the past.

    It wasn't long before the wolves began to approach her. She waved the branch at the wolves as they circled near her, and was pleased that it made the wolves back up a little bit, but not enough. It wasn't long before they were closing in again, and she noticed that the new guy had run out of arrows. That would mean that unless he had some other weapon stashed away somewhere, he was defenseless. Should she loan him one of her daggers? She didn't like to even let others know of the hidden ones, much less loan them out. But this was a situation that might call for such a thing. She thought of one dagger she had which she had taken off of a guy who had given her some trouble back in Gondor. It wasn't one that she cared much about, and wouldn't mind if she lost it. She swung the branch at the wolves again to make them back up once more and then she quickly tucked the dagger under her arm and pulled out the other one, which she then offered to Camando.

    She nearly didn't see the wolf leaping at her in time. It had apparently decided that in the brief moment that she was distracted would make a perfect opportunity to attack her. She grabbed her dagger from under her arm again and stepped to the side quickly so that the wolf missed her. As it turned back toward her, showing her its terror-inspiring jaws as it attempted to close them around her leg, she left a deep gash across its muzzle and then followed up by jabbing the burning end of the branch into its side. It yelped as the fire burned it but she didn't stop her attack even as it tried again to jump on her. She backed up as it tried to knock her down, rearing up on its hind legs to put its front paws on her. Her being so small and the wolf so big, it probably would have pinned her if it had succeeded. But she leaped back and slashed the branch at it again, burning its nose a bit. She tried to take a quick look to see where the other one was because she didn't want it sneaking around behind her to attack while she was dealing with this one.

    She dodged quickly to avoid getting bitten but found the wolf's mouth clamped around the branch which then got yanked out of her hand. The wolf threw it aside and then, growling, it advanced again on her. As she backed away more, she noticed that she seemed to be moving further away from the camp. This didn't seem like a good thing. Was it coincidence, or was the wolf doing that on purpose? Could there be more of the things lurking? It seemed to Strawberry that it might be a really good idea to get back to the relative safety of the camp where the others were. She slashed and stabbed at the wolf but it kept dodging, then it would lunge and bite at her but she dodged as well. She began trying to circle around it but the wolf lunged at her no matter which direction she tried to go. It was preventing her from getting back to the camp, she noticed. This was not good. She looked for an opportunity to kill it and hoped that there weren't other wolves waiting in the forest, just out of sight.

    She took a few deep breaths and drew another dagger out from its hiding place, now wielding two of them.
    "Alright.. come on, let's see you try and kill me." She dared it, having an idea. Maybe it would work, or maybe it wouldn't. But she was tired of this dancing around trying to avoid each other and barely doing any damage to the wolf. She watched it carefully, green eyes narrowing as she waited for the wolf to make a move. Growling, the wolf finally lunged, leaping at her. She saw that she was going to get pinned down by it. She hoped that its weight wouldn't be too much for her to handle, and braced herself for impact as she raised her daggers.

    The wolf landed on both daggers which were plunged into its chest, both blades piercing vital organs. Strawberry was, as predicted, pinned by the wolf's body. She winced as the heavy beast landed on her, but after making sure that the wolf was dead she did a quick assessment and decided that she wasn't hurt. Struggling out from under the wolf, she pulled her weapons from the carcass and glanced toward the others to see how things were going, and whether she needed to help the others.


    ((She's killed one, and if the other wolves are killed before my next post then she's going to take this opportunity to sneak off...))

    Last edited by Rainelle Hérandil; 21/Nov/2016 at 06:18 AM.
    ~ Yield not to misfortunes, but go on more boldly against them ~

  53. Aranadhel's Avatar
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    #53




    Back Into the Light

    Nyarane
    Maethor

    With Tirindo, Camando & Strawberry.



    Nyarane woke with a start, deep breaths in and out, in and out as she gathered herself and stood up. The elleth did not even have time to register her thoughts as a Were pounced on her left side and she was back on the ground in a jiff. It would have been a comical sight if it weren't for the seriousness of the situation. Rane cursed under her breath and rolled away from the advancing Were. She then moved into a crouching position and felt for her back and belt and gasped in horror at the realisation that she was unarmed.

    Being an Elf experienced with countless life and death situations Rane took it upon herself to once again find a way out of this unsavoury Morgoth's mess. Without hesitation she leapt at the still advancing Were and buried her long fingernails onto the Were's neck whilst avoiding her own neck from being bitten by the foul smelling gaping jaw. The body and weight of the Were tripled her slender frame but Rane's inner strength was not to be trifled with and she squeezed hard and strangled the abomination as she understood the grave consequences if her plan failed. Before the Were could regain its surprise at being choked and wrapping and tearing her body apart with its hideous long hairy arms it finally let out a quick gurgling sound before a snap was heard as Rane broke its windpipe.

    The elleth quickly stood aside as the body of the Were hit the ground with a thud and was now face to face not with another Were but two in fact, growling menacingly at her, a stone throw's distance from her position. Rane still had not seen yet her comrades fighting their own duels as she now was in her warrior mode and quickly thought of another way to kill these Sauron's spawns. Her fingers were bloodied and she held her arms out to intimidate the Weres into submission. She held a feral grin and smiled in satisfaction at her sinister plan to dispose of these two.

    Rane then spoke in the Black Speech of Mordor, confident that these Weres understood her for were not their Master that bred these beasts? Hear me now you worthless soulless hounds of Sauron! she gurgled in the Enemy's language. Go back to whence you came from for to fight an Eldar is folly! For I am Nyarane and I will kill you! The Weres yellow eyes shone in recognition at the speech and froze on its spot momentarily, forgetting to strike her. Big mistake as Rane had anticipated that small opening and she hurled herself at the nearer of the two Weres and grabbed its jaw while avoiding its razor sharp teeth and opened it wide. The Were's tongue flapped in hapless agony as Rane ripped apart the upper jaw from its skull in victory as blood spluttered on her face and body. The elleth turned around with the upper jaw still in her hand and smacked it hard onto the other Were's skull and a shattering sickening sound could be heard as the teeth sunk itself and crushed both the brains and skull.

    Rane spitted on both the dead Weres by her feet and looked around her and spotted Tirindo and Camando. Tiri! she yelled at the Authon and waved at him. She was worse for wear appearance wise but otherwise was miraculously unscathed from killing the three Weres. She observed that the other Weres fell near her comrades feet as well.
    Last edited by Aranadhel; 09/Jan/2017 at 04:35 PM.

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