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  1. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #101
    Thűllir Bregedŷr
    Taking a sip of his coffee with a small smile after Kaylin’s addition to his initial toast, Thűllir felt warmed more by her smile of approval than by the drink. He nodded in agreement to her inclusion of craftsmen and traders as necessary, although he had not meant they were unnecessary by his toasting defenders.

    As silence seemed to settle on the small gathering, Thűllir watched Hallas retrieve a cup of coffee for himself, and then was distracted by Kaylin brushing his arm as she set her empty cup on the table. Glancing at her, he raised an eyebrow at her look of innocence and almost guilty shrug. He felt her continued regard for a moment as his attention was pulled away by the other wolf returning in a slinking fashion. He knew it was supposed to be trained, but any hunting attitude put him on alert. Watching the wolves, he started trying to think of something else to restart the others talking. He liked silence himself, but knew that it was more polite to converse in settings such as this. His attention thus divided, it took a moment before he noticed the change in the music and looked back at Kaylin

    His breath stilled and then sighed out gently at the faraway look in her eyes and the wisp of a smile that graced her lips as she swayed lightly. All thoughts of further conversation flew out of his head as he watched her, and he felt a bittersweet pang at the sight. Time seemed to stand still a moment, and then he wrested his eyes away to stare sightlessly down into the dregs of dark coffee that remained in the cup cradled in his hand. Briefly he wrestled with his impulse for solitude versus the more polite group conversation, but then his resolve firmed. There were other days they could talk, but there was only one evening here. Glancing around the crowded room over the rim of his cup as he knocked back the last of his coffee in one swallow, his eyes lighted on several others that he should probably greet in passing before the evening was over. But before that…he wanted to dance to one of those quiet songs.

    Stepping forward to set his now empty cup on the table, he spoke briefly and quietly to the group. “Arinelle, in response to your earlier question, yes they have tested the kite with sand bags, but now it needs a human pilot. We will test the steering in a few days before I try a real flight. You would all be welcome to watch if your duties allow you and the scholars agree. It was delightful to meet you all, and perhaps we will speak again when I stop by the barracks in the future. But now, if you would excuse me?” With a slight bow at those words, he stepped back again and turned to Kaylin.

    Offering his left hand as he looked at her with a slight tilt to his head, his question was low when he spoke again. “May I have this dance Kaylin?” He knew she might prefer to stay with her friends, but he was hopeful that her faraway look meant she might also take him up on his request. His gaze was dark, yet lit with the warmth of hope as he waited her answer.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  2. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #102


    The realization that words were being spoken only seemed to come slowly, and Kaylin had missed about half of Thűllir's first sentence before she managed to tune back in. That was the downside of having the gift of a powerful imagination. For example, when engrossed in reading a book of fiction, someone could enter the room and talk to her, but Kaylin would likely not hear them because of her focus on the story. Though the current situation wasn't quite the same, it was still similar. She was consciously listening from the word 'tested' onwards, and found she liked the word a great deal, especially if it was linked in any way to the Ranger's safety. She certainly hoped that the testing process would be thorough before he thought about taking the kite for a spin himself. Yet she should have no concerns, she told herself with a mental shrug, since the whole thing was being planned out by scholars. And after all, the title of scholar implied a certain level of brain functioning above the average, right? She blinked with a slight frown. Or was being a scholar just about knowledge, and not necessarily about intelligence? Well, those making the kite had to be smart anyways, otherwise they wouldn't have even gotten to this point. Yes. That was settling. And it would just be so amazing if it worked...

    When Thűllir mentioned they were all welcome to watch if their schedules and the scholars involved in the project approved of it, Kaylin grinned. Well that would be something! For their own sakes then, she thought the scholars had best agree. She could be rather... tenacious. She slanted her head, considering she really was her mother's daughter, and then chuckled mentally at herself. Thűllir then excused himself, gave a bow and stepped back. For a moment she thought he might leave, and her mind was on the way to a disturbed and confused state, since him leaving now would firstly make no sense, and secondly... well, she wouldn't like it, is all. However, all he did was turn to her and offer her his left hand. He was asking her for another dance. Her eyes narrowed somewhat at that, in suspicion that he might go and do things again, but then the right corner of her mouth curled up and a look of amusement settled over her face. She wiped her face clean to nod to her roommates, Turin and Hallas. "Ladies, gentlemen," she said in a way that excused herself, and then she looked back at Thűllir, and with a mysterious smile put her hand in his. "You may," she said pleasantly, and after an additional quick wave to Elesil and Arinelle, the two set off for the dance floor again.

    On the way there, Kaylin was looking around to see how people were dancing to the slow melody of the song. Mostly the only difference seemed the pace of the moves. That she could handle. Just dance a little slower - peanuts. She was the one to turn and face him, her right hand still in his left, slanting her head a little, carrying a calm, focused -and also slightly teasing- look. "Round two?" she asked quietly.
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  3. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #103
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Quiet elation was the best description of Thűllir’s response when Kaylin placed her hand in his in consent. He had been concerned for a moment, because although she had been grinning when he initially turned to her, the immediate suspicious narrowing of her gaze at his question gave his nerves a bump. Maybe she would rather stay with her friends? He wasn’t sure what he would do with himself if she did say no, as he had already said farewell to the others. He arrested that thought with hopeful and wary relief as mischief lit her eyes and her lips curled up in amusement. That hope edged up a notch when she turned to say her own surprisingly brief goodbye to those gathered, and then turned back to place her hand in his.

    Thűllir returned her beguiling smile with one of his own, as his nerves smoothed out and he let that quiet elation fill him. She’d said yes! His lips curled in a small smile as he closed his hand around hers. As they turned to move to the dance floor again, he gave a nod to the others as she waved, and then he returned his attention to Kaylin. His senses must have been working well, because any observer would have wondered how they managed to get to the dance floor without bumping into anything, or attributed it entirely to the lady’s skill, for Thűllir didn’t take his eyes off her until they reached the floor. He did glance up briefly then to make sure of their position amidst the other dancers, and glanced back down as she turned to face him.

    As he turned to face her and brought his right hand to rest lightly at her waist, he was filled with a confusing mix of anticipation, deep contentment, and amused affection at her calm and yet slightly teasing look. Although her question was quiet, he heard the underlying challenge in her words when she spoke. “Round two?” Thűllir’s eyes lit with his full smile at those words, and then gentled back down as he answered. “Aye, if you wish it M’lady. Thank you for the gift of this dance.” He had a slight suspicion now about what her narrow eyed gaze had been about, as he remembered the interesting exchange during their last dance. He shrugged slightly, and then wrapped his arm further around her as he slid his right hand to the small of her back and tugged her close as they stepped out slightly into the dance. He fully intended to just enjoy this excuse to hold her as they moved to the quiet and haunting melody that put him in a mood that lent itself to intangible dreams. They may have only known one another for a short while, but he was much more comfortable with her this time because of the intervening interactions. He wasn’t playing a game, but rather finding the steps to a critical and yet beautiful dance as he looked down at her with a faint smile, and then dipped his head to place his right cheek by hers. Closing his eyes a moment as they swept through a turn, he breathed her in, and held it a moment before reluctantly opening his eyes again for the required navigation. His chest rumbled slightly as he began to quietly and wordlessly hum the bars of the tune to her along with the orchestra.
    Last edited by Karis Ziranphel; 08/Feb/2013 at 12:10 PM.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  4. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #104


    She could see his eyes lighting up at her questioning words, and that made her give him a tranquil half-smile. Gift? He looked at her consent as a gift? Or was it verbal hyperbole? He did seem to be inclined towards a bit of artistic licence now and then. Still, his words made her look down, though she kept the smile on her face. Looking down saved her from blushing when his arm almost encircled her, because she was sure she would have done so if their eyes had been locked. She didn't understand why so much of what he did had such an effect on her, since she was hardly a shy individual. Be that as it may, at least this time she'd had the sense to avoid his eyes at the right time, she thought semi-smugly. Mostly though, instead of being smug, she was mostly intrigued and perhaps even slightly spellbound by the combination of the music and the distance, or rather the lack of distance, between them. Thűllir had made good use of the slow nature of the melody to pull her close. There were other pairs who were doing the same - though not all were - and so it wouldn't seem like such a strange thing, she supposed; even though it was definitely new to Kaylin herself. Hesitantly, her left hand found its way to the side of his right shoulder, and she decided to look up briefly to gauge his facial expression, curious to see what she might find there. He was giving her a faint smile, not one of those forced faint smiles or sad, sympathetic ones, but one of a different sort... and then he put his cheek to hers. Kaylin hadn't seen that coming, but instead of it making her uncomfortable, she was first simply a little surprised as her face would have testified to any close observers, and then she found it rather sweet. When he started to hum along with the song, she grinned silently and after a moment or two she let out a single, soft chuckle.

    The instant the sound came out, she thought he might take her amusement the wrong way and withdraw, so she slid her left hand from the side of his shoulder to the back of it, and exerted some pressure on his shoulder blade to signal she didn't want him to move away. And also to keep him close if he would try to create more of a distance between them despite of her signal. However, she had slightly miscalculated the amount of the pressure and seemed to end up eliminating any of the space that had been left between them alltogether. It hadn't exactly been her intention, but once it had happened she knew she didn't want either of them to move away just that little bit again. Dancing like this was alright. Nice. Pretty wonderful. Perhaps a little addictive. Kaylin took a controlled breath or two, deep and slow - and as quietly as she could -, in an attempt to keep herself calm both inward and outwardly.

    Even with all that, she felt the need to do something else, something extra. The moment had her completely enchanted somehow, and since he couldn't see it anyway, she bit her bottom lip as she slowly brought their clasped hands in closer, slipped her hand out of his left, and gently slid it down his wrist, lower arm and past his elbow to settle about halfway around his upper arm. As for what she was thinking... she wasn't thinking of much at all.
    Last edited by Arnyn Dealedwen; 08/Feb/2013 at 02:30 PM.
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  5. Windowcel Alarion's Avatar
    Princess Anna
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    #105
    NPC Mellya
    Do I miss my homeland? Faramir’s question caught her off guard, because it was not something she liked to think of often; memory was a bittersweet thing in a place as shadowed as Gondor. “I suppose that I do miss it, from time to time,” she answered honestly. “There is something about the land itself: knowing how it will rise and fall, the smell and feel of the earth, what the wind will carry with it… but when the people who make it home are gone it is less difficult to leave, and I think that sometimes distance makes good relatives.” She intentionally – although she hoped inconspicuously – did not respond to his comment about shielding her from the horrors of war. Indeed, who was he to tell her anything of the sort?

    When he began to answer her own question Mellya could see that it was more difficult than she thought. Her life had been about breaking out of the patterns set for her by her family, while his was clearly the opposite. She was sure it could be wearying at times, but he had a far better life laid out for him than any of those she had been forced to contemplate before leaving home. “I have truly enjoyed this dance, Captain,” she answered, still a bit distracted by his answer. “But I should not keep you from all of the other people who would like to have your company. I see that Pele Alarion is here,” she added, flushing a little. “She is the only person whom I know, and it has been some time since I have seen her.” Not wanting to seem so very solitary, she added, “I did attend this festival with the intent to make new acquaintances… I should probably begin soon, don’t you think?”

    As the dance was drawing to a close, she added the thought that had been in her head as he answered her difficult question. “I suppose, then, that our lives go the way our natures guide them, and our circumstances only make it more or less easy to do what we wish. I cannot imagine doing any differently in the past than I have done, without being a completely different person.” Her voice trailed off to a whisper near the end, wondering why she was waxing philosophical. Perhaps it was because Captain Faramir gave her the impression that he might not mind her philosophizing, even if he did not know what inspired it.

    @Pele:
    sorry I've been awol, it's been a crazy week with teaching and class and job applications. I'll catch you on skype early next!
    ~ Dryhtguma of the Westmark ~
    si vales, valeo


  6. NPC Malacor Minrimmon


    Oh, how this promiscuous pair took delight in playing these kind of games with each other, whether it be in privacy behind closed doors or out and about in the public eye! Even at a young and tender age when most children hadn't the slightest inkling of what true betrothal meant, Dani and Cory had grown so very close to each other in their relationship that they taken to heart towards both each others likes and dislikes, and also had learned just how to get under each others skin whenever they felt that time had deemed it ' affectionately necessary '." So this is love? ", both the sentimental song and reminiscent query that he and his beautiful bride used to ask each other quite often during their innocent youth echoed within Malacor's mind as he dreamily stared her way across the Tavern table.


    The tickling toes of Malacor ceased in their mischief under the table when their dinner plates had arrived, for with one, craving bat of her lashes, Vandanni had upped the ante and called her husband's bluff...They often say that a look says a thousand words, and Cory knew this particular gaze quite well. " Alright, you win...just...don't look at me like that again while you're eating please...Not here, not now Dani...You know it drives me as mad as a wet hen...", the duped dairy farmer conceded in a plea as he took out his kerchief to wipe his beaded brow and partake of his meaty meal in futility.


    It was not long after when something vaguely familiar about a young woman ( Amilida ) that had just arrived in the Tavern caught Malacor's wandering eye. He could only see her from the rear, yet the blonde hair done up in a primped bun brought him back to a time long ago when Dani had donned a wig that looked remarkably identical to this girl's golden tresses. Although she appeared to be a bit younger and taller than Vandanni, he could easily tell that she lacked his wedded wife's curvaceousness as she began to turn to the side. " Well I'll be a suck egg mule! Isn't that your lil sister Amilida over there Dani? ", a startled Malacor snickered across the table to his wife.

  7. Tavari Mordagnir's Avatar
    The Wicked Witch of the West
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    #107



    Kamion
    grinned at Tindumhiell's comment about all living things loving attention, wondering whether it was innocent, or a suggestion that she was enjoying his. Either way, his glance followed her fingers as they moved up to brush the flowers in her hair; a delicate touch, almost threatening to dislodge the blooms, but stopping short of that and lightly securing them instead. He should almost have liked for one to have fallen so that he could have tucked it back into her hair- but no matter, Narcano had reached them now, and Kamion reached to grasp his outstretched arm. "Narcano my friend! It has indeed been too long." The garrulous half-elf pressed onward, introducing himwelf to Tindumhiell and showering her with compliments, as he was wont to do! Not, of course, that any were insincere- Narcano was simply more vocal than most about expressing his appreciation for feminine beauty. The corners of his mouth tugged upwards again at the blush that rose on the maiden's cheeks. Embarrased by the praise she might have been, but she boldly answered Narcano with an introduction of her own, and made free to ask the half-elf of his adventures. "Oh yes," Kamion nodded sagely, "I was just telling Mistress Tindumhiell about how you were responsible for the more unscrupulous episodes of my youth, Narcano. Do tell her a bit of an adventure in return for putting up with our company!"

  8. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #108
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    She hadn’t pulled away or drawn back once he pulled her in close, which helped him settle inside as he felt her rest her hand more securely on his shoulder after her first hesitation. When she responded to his humming with only a quiet chuckle, Thűllir’s smile widened minutely. Yet it was Kaylin’s next move that surprised and delighted him, as she eliminated the remaining distance between them by wrapping her left hand around his shoulder and pulling him close. That she had chosen to enter into a closer embrace for the dance filled him with both wonder and contentment as they continued to glide through the slow steps of the dance. He had never held any woman thus, and that she initiated it gave him a sense of awe. Clear thought quite scattered to the winds as his focus was completely captured by Kaylin.

    When she next removed her right hand from his left, he raised an eyebrow in surprised curiosity, but almost sighed when she slid her hand up to curl around his upper arm. He wasn’t sure if she realized the invitation she offered, but since he now had a hand free he took the opportunity to slide it around to her mid-back. He did inhale a little more sharply in bemused surprise as he slid his fingers up her bare spine to weave them into her hair just below her neck. He had forgotten that her dress was that low in the back, as it was hidden by her thick fall of hair. Thűllir was slightly distracted by both the touch of skin and the warm silk of her hair. Contrary to his initial musings at the first sight of it, it didn’t burn his fingers, but soothed with its warmth instead.

    As the music shifted a little Thűllir was reminded of scenes from Ithilien; the sweeping forested hills, weeping ferns, glittering waterfalls, and scattered flowers, and he was caught by a sudden and fierce longing for peace that was almost painful. If this interminable war were over he could hope to show her those sights without the threat of enemy contact, but now he was torn between wanting to share them with her and not wanting to see her in those locations for any reason that would bring her there with the army. The strange mix of bittersweet emotion caught at his chest, and to cover his inner turmoil he turned his face a little into her hair to breathe in the scent. It grounded him again, with the mix of soap, a very faint lingering trace of spice and something that was just uniquely Kaylin. Wanting to hold onto this memory of peace and holding her in his arms, he focused in on the scent, the sound of the music, the feel of her, and the…taste. Without thought, he dropped his head to press his lips to her shoulder at the base of her neck. Tracing back up her neck, he paused beneath her ear, her temple, and then across her cheekbone and down to the edge of her jaw before returning to the indentation between, briefly pressing his lips to each place. There he paused and smiled against her cheek as they swayed through a turn and back. He remembered her earlier comment during their meal, and while he wanted to continue the exploration, he had no desire to pull away any distance. He knew he had taken some liberties, and she might well choose to push him away instead, but would let her decide how to proceed. The next move would be hers. Quietly he murmured a question before lifting his head slightly to look at her. “M’lady Bainrŷn, Kaylin…may I have that kiss?”
    Last edited by Karis Ziranphel; 15/Feb/2013 at 01:15 AM. Reason: spelling
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  9. Morwen Daegomir's Avatar
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    #109
    Lady Morwen of House Daegomir
    aka
    Ranger Initiate Morwen Daegomir
    aka
    A Lost Soul


    Morwen
    was not entirely sure who she was tonight. She felt as though she had two people inside of her, constantly fighting for dominance. All her early years growing up had been spent as Lady Morwen, daughter of Lord Belegrond of House Daegomir. That woman was cool, calm, and collected. She was fascinated by political debate and skilled in pursuits both academic and martial. Sharp and cold, Lady Morwen could unravel a scheme at a hundred paces; nothing escaped her golden gaze.

    Her other half, on the other hand, was not so refined. Streetwise and coarse, she wasn't sure that the alter ego had a name. However, it had been her identity for over the past twelve years. That woman was a survivor. Perhaps the term woman should not even be used in reference to the feral creature that resided within her, struggling to surface at every turn. It overtook her time and time again, it was the reason she had survived. But it certainly did not belong here.

    Which brought her to the real question. Why was she here? The news of the Midwinter Ball had been far spread and long talked of, but she had never imagined she would come. In fact, she had not had the slightest inclination to come. She had not attended such an event in well over a dozen years, and she felt her social skills were likely more than a little rusty. However, for some reason, she had pulled out the one package she had taken with her when she fled her Lord father's manor all those years ago. An odd bout of nostalgia was perhaps to blame, though she doubted it; she was far from nostalgic about the life she had led there. Her father's cold manner and abuse leading up to her forced marriage with Lord Hirgond- Morwen cut off the thought with a shudder. The question nagged her, but at the sight of the beautiful dress slashed with her house colors, she had been unable to resist the sudden urge to become Lady Morwen once more. And perhaps that was who she was tonight.

    Her long deep blood-red gown just barely swept the floor as she swept forward, striding out as gracefully and confidently as she ever had at court. She found comfort in the familiar movements, as though she were simply falling back into a rhythm again. As a few heads glanced her way, almost she stuttered slightly in her step, but instead she turned it into a graceful hesitation, making her way carefully but coolly across the room. Her movements, though apparently casual, were as carefully and intricately planned and placed as she had always been; not striding openly across the room, but yet not letting herself drift to far to the edges. Both movements would draw undue attention, and she knew how to weave skillfully through a crowd in such a way that she was there and yet not there simultaneously. Being sized up as absolutely mediocre was a skill much needed in the intricate workings of court life.

    Morwen's long midnight black tresses fell in shimmering waves to her waist, with just part of it done up in intricate braids encircling her head, so as to keep it out of her face. Her golden eyes glinted below slanting ebony brows as she sized up the room around her. Subconsciously, her right hand smoothed subtly at her dress; a nervous tic she had always had but had never noticed about herself. It rarely showed itself except when she found herself in high pressure situations and wearing a dress, as she always had at court. The place her hand unconsciously moved to was near where her dagger was secured, hidden under the gown. She glanced down suddenly, her eyes taking in the golden and black slashes running across her breast. It almost came as a shock to see them there; strange to wear the colors of a house she thought she had forsworn. However, they seemed right there for some reason, as though they were filling in something that had been missing from her for a long time. Tearing her gaze away from them; she paused in her walk to take in the room, a suitable and yet not suspicious distance from most.

    She recognized a few of the faces, or at least she thought she did; one was a woman she had traveled and fought alongside, (Kaylin). However, she was buried in the arms of a man that Morwen did not recognize, and the golden-eyed woman had to turn away; such displays made her uncomfortable. They reminded her too much of being under someone else's power, of giving her own power away in such a way... of having it forcefully taken. Her motivation for avoiding such contact and even the sight of others involved within it was partially fear, she knew; she was no fool. For a long time she had been completely at a loss to comprehend such things; her father had offered no example, nor had any relationships she had had or seen around her growing up helped her to grow to understand such concepts as trust or affection. However, some small inkling of comprehension existed within her, from something she had observed in training and getting to know Sergeant Pele and Lieutenant Maldir. She had been overcome with curiosity trying to comprehend their relationship, and her observations had not completely answered everything for her, but she was beginning to see an inkling of what a healthy and trusting relationship might be. However, she had no desire to observe more about one now.

    As her golden eyes continued to search the room, flicking from one face to the next; assessing, and calculating as she was wont to do, and in truth could truly not help herself from doing, she found her gaze landing and pausing on a noble looking man (Kamion). She wondered a moment why he had stuck out as someone for her to observe, and for a moment dismissed him as having merely caught her attention because of his height, which put him easily above the heads of most of those around him. But there was something about him that kept her gaze locked on him, though she tried to move on. Morwen considered the man; he had noble features and dark hair, though he was not looking at her and so she could not assess his eye color nor the expression and feel of his face. She told herself there was no reason to continue watching him; but an intense curiosity seized her, and experience had taught her that such curiosity would not rest until she obeyed it and satisfied it. She had a need to see his features and assess what lay behind his eyes. Over the years, she had found that a man's (or woman's) eyes told their story. Her curiosity about the motivations of mankind plagued her consistently, and she found most to be so predictable that she did not even need to meet their gaze; their mere physical presence gave them away. This man, however, was not so easily seen through; and if there was something she could not resist, it was a puzzle. And so she locked her gaze on him, waiting for him to glance up so that she might assess him further.
    Last edited by Morwen Daegomir; 11/Feb/2013 at 07:17 AM.

  10. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #110


    The feel of his hand on her back and his fingers going up her spine made her shift a little automatically in response to the tingly sensation it sent down her back. Her right hand moved from his upper arm to about halfway his left collarbone, and came to rest there as they moved through the steps of the dance. She found it very enjoyable to just be able to ‘be’ – without thoughts to distract her from the moment, without anything to steal her focus from their embrace. For a while, she felt incredibly at ease and so calm that her eyes fell closed, and she got the sense that half of all this was a dream instead of reality.


    When he turned his face a bit more to his right, towards her hair, she vaguely realized this was in fact happening. The sudden and unexpected feel of his lips at the base of her neck made her tense up a little. She hadn’t seen it coming and while it had taken her by surprise, she kept her eyes closed and enjoyed the feel of it and the strange sensation it left behind. His lips on her skin were intoxicating, and threatened to make her forget where they were. Kaylin was brought back partway from her little private world by Thűllir asking her something and moving his head up and away a little to look at her. Some of the calmness slipped away from her, and was replaced by a nervous feeling of sorts. It was the good kind of nervous: the kind that made a fresh batch of adrenaline course through your veins in what seemed like a high-speed chase. She opened her eyes at his question, and looked down a little, very slightly tipping her head down, and then up again as she slowly turned her face to look at him. Her eyes found his for a moment, and she lifted her right hand from his collarbone to put her right index and middle finger on his lips as if to say he shouldn’t talk now. She maintained eye contact for a moment which seemed longer than it was in reality, after which her gaze trailed down to his lips and, in turn, her two fingers to his chin. She gently pulled his face closer and without giving it a moment’s thought Kaylin softly touched her lips to his. Her eyes closed as she allowed herself to sort of sink into it, her left hand sliding from his right shoulder to the back of his neck and over to his other shoulder, in the meantime.

    She thought the moment was so perfect that she didn’t want it to end, but in the end she used her right hand to softly separate them by pushing against the middle of his chest , creating a space of a few inches between their faces. Kaylin dipped her head down a little and took a slow, deep breath. That’s what that felt like, then. After a moment, she looked up at him with a half smile. “So,” she started in a half whisper, “Don’t be afraid to tell me if I’m a bad kisser.” With a glance at his lips, she felt the urge to kiss him again, and could tell she was being drawn closer as if by some unseen force, but she willed herself not to and tried to focus her mind on other things whilst looking into his eyes. She found it disturbingly difficult. Chairs. Tables. Linens. Plates. Food. Friends. Officers. Banners. Yes, the Tavern. Making a mental effort, she created more of a physical distance between them, pulling back her left arm from around his neck, her hand moving back to the side of his right shoulder again. Her right hand stayed where it was to maintain their distance. She hoped he wouldn’t take it as some kind of rejection, but thought that anything she said to explain it would sound weird. Therefore, she ended up saying nothing and just looked at him.

  11. Hallas C. Pehwarin's Avatar
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    #111
    Hallas continued to sip his coffee while observing his fellow southern kindred converse, dance, or enjoy the Tavern's fare. This evening was crawling along and thus did the young northern dúnedain choose to set down his now empty cup onto the nearby table and move forward a few tentative steps to see who was dancing on the polished marble floor. Namely his two friends, fellow officers Pele and Maldir Alarion along with the ranger Thűllir and Kaylin.

    All seemed very happy and he, Hallas was for them though in his heart he yearned for the one who had stolen his long ago. Murmuring her name in soft whisper, "Likus " did the young Sergeant and noble envision his love standing before him his keen and bright blue eyes twinkling in the light of the room from the many candles to the polished chandelier that was erected over the dance floor. He prayed that one day she'd walk back into his life and thus he'd be restored mind, body, and spirit!

    Dryhtguma / Númenórean

  12. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #112
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    When Kaylin lifted her head to look at him and then placed her finger on his lips as if to quiet him, Thűllir was touched and mildly amused that she may have caught him out in his naming, but then something in her eyes made his breath catch. As her gaze and fingers slid to his lips and chin, he felt his heart zing with sudden anticipation, but was in no way prepared for when she quickly followed her gaze by pulling him in to place her soft lips on his. Oh my………….His thoughts blanked out completely when she pulled him even closer.

    After an all too short but timelessly perfect moment he felt her push gently against his chest, and pulled back slightly despite the wordless and slightly dazed internal protest. His immediate impulse was to close the gap again, but instead he just took a deep breath as he looked down at her with quiet wonder and tried to regain his footing internally. When Kaylin looked back up at him with that half-smile he almost pulled her back in, but tuned in to her words instead. Bad kisser?...His eyebrows shot up, and he wordlessly shook his head with a small smile of his own. He was silently rather relieved at what her statement implied, although he was completely incredulous that she even felt the need to ask.

    Remembering that they were surrounded by others, he didn’t protest other than a brief tightening of his arms when she pushed back to a more proper dancing distance, and let his arms loosen until she found her distance. He wasn’t entirely sure how to interpret her move, but acknowledged to himself that he also needed the space in order to regain his equilibrium. Her kiss was intoxicating. Lowering his head slightly, he finally answered her question with a half laugh-half sigh. “Kaylin, if you consider that a bad one I don’t know that I would survive a good one.” He paused, realizing that his words may not have come across in the way he intended, and tried again in a both sincere and amused voice. “But at least I would die a happy man.” He smiled down at her as they drifted through the last strains of the dance before coming to a stop.

    Keeping his right hand where it was, Thűllir lifted his left to cover hers against his chest and pressed it more firmly to his heart. He gazed at her a moment in silence, unsure of what to say, if anything. Eventually they needed to move or join in the next dance, however, and so he wrapped her hand in his own and lifted it to brush a kiss across her knuckles. He wasn’t quite ready to join in conversations despite that being his original intent, so when a more spirited folk reel began he found it to be the perfect opportunity. After this they would go talk again, but not yet. His eyes that had been darkly dreamy gained a sudden sparkle of laughing challenge as he smiled at her with his eyes and spoke his request as more a statement than a question. “Dance with me M’lady.” The music was fast and joyful, pulling him out of the stunned quiet mood he had dropped into and helping him focus on her as a whole rather than just her heady taste. The thought of tomorrows attempted flight didn’t hold a candle to it.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  13. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #113


    The words he used to reply to her comment made her smile broadly and genuinely. She slanted her head and looked down as they slowed to a stop and the tune faded away. When he enclosed her right hand in his left, and pressed it against his chest a bit more, she felt herself gravitating towards him again, but she caught herself in time and kept her distance. A slight sense of worry settled in her chest and showed a bit through her eyes. Would she have to keep herself in check all the time now when she was around him? Even though it was easier not to get drawn back in the larger the distance between them was, with his one hand on her back and the other holding hers, it still required a considerable effort on her part not to step closer. However, she refused to be a slave to her instinct in this case, and that gave her the determination she needed at the moment. He then lifted their hands and ended up kissing her hand again, and the grip of her hand on the side of his shoulder involuntarily got tighter. The nails of her right hand fingers pressed into the palm of her hand, which helped her to stay where she was.

    The new melody coming from the orchestra was more of an up-beat, happy tune, something that Kaylin was grateful for since she figured it would help her not to get too close to him again. Another slow or romantic song of any kind would have made it all that much harder. Thűllir asked her for another dance; though it was not so much a question as it was a statement of his wishes. At this point, he had figured out she would not refuse him, she supposed. She was a little surprised to see the challenge in his eyes, and the combination of his words and his gaze caused her to laugh out loud. It released some of the tension she was feeling, and made her loosen her grip on his shoulder to a more natural one.

    “Well alright!” she exclaimed amusedly in response. “Though I have to say I can’t promise you I’ll be quite as graceful as before,” Kaylin admitted in all honesty. “The thing is I have little experience dancing to this kind of music.” Pausing for a moment, she kept her voice light and merry, and pushed the idea she might make a fool of herself to the dark recesses in the back of her mind. With a bold grin, she looked up at him. “You might have to give me some pointers on this one. And I’m not kidding; I swear the odds of me stepping on your feet are pretty huge if you don’t grant me some tips. For example...” With a quick turn of her wrist, her hand broke free from his, and she comically waved it in front of his face. “What do I do with my right hand for this dance? Same thing as during the first dance we shared, or not?” Kaylin let out a small sigh and shrugging as if accepting her fate begrudgingly, after which she almost unconsciously touched his left temple and slid her fingers down the line of his cheekbones to then trace his lips. It came to her that perhaps that wasn’t the smartest thing to do if what she wanted was to maintain some distance, but she told herself that life was boring without any challenges in it. Still, she took her hand away from his face after some deliberation, and managed to give him n apologetic look. “Sorry.” She left it unclear whether she was apologising for touching his face or for not quite knowing how to deal with the faster dance. It was a bit for both, but she left it up to him to interpret it. After clearing her throat, she continued. “My point is, I will require some assistance... Would you guide me through it, Thűllir?”

  14. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #114
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Figuring the laugh and the slight relaxing of the grip on his shoulder was a good sign, Thűllir’s smile grew into a brief grin as he then listened to her assent. He gave a slight disbelieving headshake at her self-effacing words. There were some people who could even pull off clumsiness with grace, and he thought it was highly likely that Kaylin would fall into that category, although not knowing the steps of a dance did not count as being clumsy. As to stepping on his feet, that’s what his boots were for; to provide protection. He was just starting to open his mouth to say just that, when she took her hand from his, waved it while asking for instructions, and then touched her fingers to his temple.

    Thűllir’s face stilled, and he watched her with sudden intensity as she slid her fingers down his cheekbones to trace his lips. She was definitely testing his ability to let her keep her distance, and his own fingers flexed at her waist as he willed himself not to make any sudden moves. His eyes slid shut a moment as he demanded stillness of himself, but her next words had him opening them again to look at her quizzically. Her apology upon removing her fingers bewildered him a little, and he raised his eyebrows slightly in question. Why apologize for either not knowing or her touch? As if he would not want it? Just as he was raising his hand to take hers again, he paused as she cleared her throat lightly and continued. “My point is, I will require some assistance... Would you guide me through it, Thűllir?” His heart absolutely melted at those words, and his face softened as he eventually managed to complete his action and capture her hand. Lifting it back to cup it against his cheek, he had to pause a moment and find his voice before murmuring. “As you wish…” His heart was so full that he had to pause again before attempting to speak further, and used the opportunity to turn his head and press a brief kiss into the palm of her hand. Linking their fingers, he brought her hand back down to his shoulder, and his voice was momentarily husky as he continued. “It would be my pleasure Kaylin.”

    Clearing his throat, Thűllir tried to recapture the lighthearted feel of the dance, and took a deep breath before starting again in a heartier voice. “As to the hands, we will start the same way as our first. The key to folk dances is less worrying about footwork, and more of an emphasis on being energetic and fun.” Bringing their hands back out to a normal clasp, he paused a moment to find the beat and then swung them into the steps with a slight dip and a brilliant smile as he gave her direction by a light pressure to her back. The difference from previous was that although the steps were somewhat similar they had less of a glide and more of a skip to them to go with the joyful and fast music. They whirled around the floor to the tune, with Thűllir’s grin growing as they went. He had a little familiarity with the tune, and knew that some of the phrases ended with a shout near the end. As he sensed it coming, he gave her a quick warning over the music. “When I put my left hand to your waist just grab my shoulder.” Two brief spins later the music began to build, and when the “shout” came he placed both hands to either side of her waist and lifted! Turning around in place, he flashed her a smile before bringing her back down and stepping back into the swing of the dance.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  15. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #115


    His reply made her smile inwardly, but on the outside her eyes just followed what he was doing - intently, but a little glazed over, though she was by no means distracted by anything else around them. Her focus was entirely on him; the sound of his voice, the look in his eyes, the touch of his hands... He didn't seem at all worried about her having little experience with this kind of dance, which was relaxing since now she felt like he had been warned. Given that he still wanted to proceed, he'd have only himself to blame if she stepped on his feet or bumped against him or something. Hmm. Perhaps accidentally bumping into him wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, either... A second later she found herself thoroughly amused at the thought, though she tried to keep it out of her eyes, which were usually a dead give-away for what she was thinking (and could therefore sometimes clash strongly with her outward facial expression, body language and/or tone of voice).

    It was funny to her how both she and Thűllir had cleared their throats - and in a relatively short time span. She smiled the tiniest bit when she noticed him taking a deep breath - there was little to be missed when observing someone this closely - and raised her eyebrows a little in curiosity when he started to explain the dance a bit to her. Less worrying about footwork and more of an emphasis on being energetic? And fun? His choice of words and the situation made her laugh a little again, as it made her think about their conversation at the bar. When she'd said that what she loved most was having fun, it had seemed to her he was different, which made his last words pretty comical to her. Not that she thought he'd shy away from enjoying himself if he could, but the whole thing just amused her. "Fun is good," she said with a grin. The grin grew a little as she debated whether or not to speak her next thoughts aloud, but considering he had dealt so nicely with her request for guidance (and hadn't laughed at her or made her feel uncomfortable about it), she shrugged mentally and continued. "Perhaps I could help you have some of it more often?" It was an interesting question, and more of a suggestion really, but she was pretty confident about how he would take it.

    As he started the dance, Kaylin was a bit unsure of how to proceed with the steps, but she refused to let it show on her face and cast her eyes down to their feet so that, first of all, they wouldn't give away her uncertainty, and second of all, she could avoid as many errors as she could. However, she soon found out the dance wasn't that hard at all. After a few moments, she got pretty comfortable with the moves, and looked away from the floor with a smile that said she was rather pleased with herself. Therefore, it served her right that she didn't see the lift coming at all. When Thűllir told her to grab his shoulder when he moved the position of his left hand from her own hand to her waist, she gave him a questioning look, but he said nothing more for a brief while, and suddenly he had both hands on her waist, and while she was putting her hand on his shoulder, she felt herself being lifted up. A surprised, but muted "Woh!" left her mouth, and she looked down on the Ranger with an incredulous face. When her feet reached the floor again, she shook her head with a half-smile.

    "Doesn't seem like you need any help having fun at the moment," she said, speaking loud enough so he could hear her over the music as the dance continued. A mischievous and totally amused grin mastered her expression as she added: "Though perhaps I should be the one to lift you at some point- to give you a slight idea of what it would feel like to fly that silly kite..." Of course getting lifted couldn't be compared to that, but it was a funny thought nonetheless - for various reasons. "If you are already afraid I might drop you, maybe you shouldn't try the kite," she added with a pretend understanding look on her face and tone in her voice. "I'd understand if you'd want to back down from it in that case," she grinned broadly, hardly focusing on the steps anymore in the meanwhile. "Seriously though... this has been thought through enough, yes? You're starting with a reasonably low height and such? Don't imagine you'd start jumping off of Mount Mindolluin." Kaylin shrugged. "Cause there is confidence, and then there is foolhardiness."
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  16. Fiery Mommy Row's Avatar
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    #116
    Eamon had simply nodded at the guard as he stood there deep in his reverie. He heard what the guard said, but it didn’t really penetrate. Not that it mattered really. There was no one else here who needed him to protect their dignity. Not even that girl who had come to the ball seemingly alone. He was fairly certain her mother was here. A daughter never came unescorted or without her mother trying to pass her around to all the available men in the room. He was certainly most grateful he had been unavailable for all this time.
    After a moment more of pondering the fate of his best friend and niece, he gave a reluctant sigh. Rheda would kill him if he didn’t at least stay and ‘enjoy’ the stupid thing on her behalf since she was unable to come herself. Dear Bema, why was he so dutifully loyal to his family? Either it got him into trouble, or it just left him utterly exhausted. And then he remembered exactly why… They were his family, and despite it all, he loved them. Finally he left the middle of the dance floor, giving the guard a nod.
    ‘Do not fret, I am an honest man, you need not throw me out this night.’
    He then shook his head as he grabbed a plate and started piling food items on it. He wasn’t paying attention to how much food he was putting on his plate, until it became too heavy to carry one-handed. He then looked down at it and rolled his eyes.
    ‘Of course, I lose my temper, and the result ends up being that I fill my plate with more food than I can eat…’
    He was just passing the table at which Amilida’s sister Vandani and her husband Malacor sat, when he heard the man say something about Ami being present. He dropped his plate, food going everywhere, stunned.
    ‘WHAT?!’ He then started speaking rapidly in Rohirric, the faded accent he had tried for 11 years to repress finally making an appearance.
    ‘She bloody well said ta me she waren’t comin’ n’ that she ‘ad been tol’ young lassies weren’t s’posed ta come ta places like ‘ese! Where she be? I wanna dance with me gal!’ He looked to where Malacor had been looking and his jaw dropped. THAT was his Ami? The girl he had been confused over since the moment she walked in? No wonder his mind kept wandering to her. It then occurred to him that Ami was there with two boys (Mourgan and Andarion)… ones closer to her age… Was that what she wanted? Someone to care for her that wasn’t an old man? (Okay so he was 18 but still it was a substantial age difference) Someone that didn’t have a niece just barely younger than her? Well he didn’t care. That woman, and yes, she was a woman now, especially in his eyes, was HIS! And he was removing that stupid blonde wig, so he could once again see that beautiful auburn hair that he loved.
    Finally, his night was his again, and he was a happy man. He had noticed that she was with those… boys, and yes, it had scared him for that brief moment. But right now, he didn’t care, all he could think about was swooping his lady off her feet. He looked back at Vandani and Malacor, and winked at them, before saluting Malacor and offering him his thanks. And then he couldn’t help himself. He RAN for Amilida. He didn’t care WHO was in his way.
    Finally, he reached her, wrapped his arms around her waist, and whispered, ‘
    Well, I must admit, I am ashamed your brother-in-law recognized you before me…’ He kissed her cheek, (as a proper man did to his betrothed! Unlike his idiotic friend Jaren.) and then said louder, ‘So, laddies, who might you both be?' He noticed the way they both looked at her, and to try hard not to laugh. Sometimes he had to stop himself from doing the same thing as he watched her grow up. 'She’s a charming lady isn’t she? Quite beautiful too.’
    Now typically, he would have been the jealous type, but after a night gone so wrong, just seeing Ami again was enough to put him in a really good mood. And to be honest, right now, he was feeling like he couldn’t blame the boys. Amilida WAS gorgeous, and well… perfect. HIS perfection, but perfect nonetheless. Now, in his good mood, he was even inclined to let the boys dance with Ami… provided he got her the rest of the night. ‘You boys should ask her to dance… She loves dancing, from what I know…’ He winked at Ami and then looked at the boys again. ‘Though only one each, or people might start talking… Particularly me.’ He laughed.
    Last edited by Rowena Annis; 14/Feb/2013 at 04:45 PM. Reason: Formatting and a few minor edits

    ~Beadorhaelend (Westmark)~
    ~They told me to get off my high horse... I ran them over instead~

  17. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #117
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Kaylin’s muted “Woh!” and incredulous look at the lift made Thűllir laugh lightly in delight. He bent closer to hear her words over the music as they caught the rhythm of the dance again, and he could only grin and shake his head at her words. Lift him? While he could see her sending him flying in hand to hand combat, the thought of her lifting him in a dance made him chuckle. As the dance wound to a close, the sweeping notes broadened, leading to longer and exaggerated movements. Instead of replying to her verbally about the flying right away, he gave her another taste of air movement when the last long wail of the violins came, by wrapping his right arm firmly around her waist, lifting her a few inches off the ground to brace against his right hip, and spinning in a circle as he leaned away. Her skirt and hair flared out to sweep behind her at the movement, and he grinned as he watched her with his head thrown back.
    Ending the spin, he let her drift back down to her feet, and then pulled her back in the rest of the way by bringing his left arm down to wrap behind her back as well. He gave her a quick and impulsive peck on the forehead, and then leaned back so he could see her and give her some space as other laughing couples also found their footing again after that energetic dance. He was touched by the concern that her questions revealed, and amused at her manner of asking. Giving her a wry smile, he tilted his head before speaking. “Yes I have been having fun here with you tonight Kaylin. It is a breath of fresh air to be able to laugh and dance with you.” His eyes were lit with a soft light. “There has been too little of that in my life of late…”

    A quick glance at the orchestra confirmed that they were taking a short water break between tunes, so they had a few moments before they had to clear the floor or dance. With less urgency to move immediately, Thűllir decided to just enjoy the brief moment, and although he relaxed his arms a little, remained stationary as he gazed at her. He eventually continued after his pause. “As for the flying and lifting, you would be welcome to come observe Kaylin. They will be starting with me rather low, although someday they do want me to launch off the mountain if these low tests work. After all, the Eagles soar in the heights on the winds, so kites are likely to do best there as well….but that day is not tomorrow, nor today.” He was trying to keep it light, but her questioning statements also stirred his heart, so his responses were both playful and quietly sincere. Removing his left hand from her back again, he caught hers in his own, and lifted it between them as if inspecting the palm of her hand. He wasn’t quite sure how to say what he was thinking after her comments, because while they were very lighthearted he also heard them in a different way that perhaps she did not intend. Tracing her palm with his thumb, he finally decided to go ahead and speak. “I know you could easily throw me in combat Kaylin, but you already have me in your hand and flying, with no lifts needed to know how it feels.” He lifted his gaze almost shyly back to meet hers again as he continued softly. “Perhaps I have already jumped off the mountain as such, and a fall from a kite would seem naught beside this height, but I don’t think I need to fear you dropping me.” His smile was a bit wry and self-effacing as he realized his words could come across as either mere play, or too serious for the occasion, but something compelled him to speak thus to her.

    Feeling a little silly for having spoken as he had, despite very much meaning his words, Thűllir linked his fingers with hers and gave a half-laugh. “But that is not the best topic after such energetic dancing. Would you like another drink Kaylin? Something to cool the throat before we greet anyone else perhaps?” He didn’t know quite where to go from here, other than the vague idea that they should go talk to the Captain or some more of her friends.
    Last edited by Karis Ziranphel; 16/Feb/2013 at 02:01 AM.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  18. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #118


    The new lift he tried made her widen her eyes and grin. This stuff seemed like a weird way of dancing to her, but it sure was fun – and that was reason enough to just go with it. When she had found her footing, she shook her head and looked at Thűllir with slightly incredulous eyes. “What has gotten into you?!” she laughed, and then shrugged. “Not that I mind, to be clear… Just another new experience. This evening has definitely been filled with those,” Kaylin added carefully, leaving him to figure out for himself what those new experiences might be exactly. As Thűllir put his left arm around her as well and then pecked her on the forehead, she blinked and brought her right hand up to indignantly rub her forehead. Then he replied to question from before, admitting he was having fun with her here and that he’d been having too little of it recently. Kaylin tilted her head just like he was doing, and gave him one of her half-smiles. “Life can change quickly,” she offered gently, putting her hands on his upper arms in a reassuring manner. “There could be a turning point in yours at any time.”

    Though the music of the tune had stopped, Thűllir didn't move right away, and after a moment Kaylin realized the orchestra was probably taking some sort of break. He told her it would be alright for her to come and watch the kite business– something he had said to the group they were talking to earlier as well, and now added that they would start with low heights and build their way up. She supposed that would indeed be the right way to go about it. The way he took her hand and inspected it vaguely made her think of the way a fortune-teller might do so, but then again it was very different, and she worried he might fire some more of his artistic imagery her way – which she found difficult to respond to. For one since she had no such talents, and secondly because they just left her a bit stunned, and using humor in a reply would just be so out of place now... after everything.

    It appeared that she wasn’t that mistaken. As she listened to his words, she thoughtfully frowned the tiniest bit, looking in his eyes while he spoke and looking at her hand in his after to figure out how to react to it. She didn’t usually think too hard on reactions and just followed her gut, but she couldn’t always tell what her instinct was this evening. She had no instinct for situations like this. The Ranger didn’t wait long before speaking up again, and moving on from the subject with a half-laugh and lighter tone of voice. Kaylin couldn’t tell whether it was to spare her a little, or because he had made himself uncomfortable with his own words, or whether she had made him uncomfortable by her lack of words in response. He suggested a drink, and afterwards greeting more people.

    Kaylin took her gaze, still carrying that very slight frown and thoughtful look, off their hands and back to his eyes. “If it is not the best topic, then why say it at all?” she asked him, unable to keep her rebellious side from shining through just a little, though the comment wasn’t about being rebellious. She was trying to make a point, but it hit her that her question would easily lead him to a wrong conclusion. She wasn’t trying to say that he shouldn’t have said it, but rather that he shouldn’t need to shy away after being up-front with her. “What I mean is…” She paused a while, trying to string the words together the way she wanted to. “That if you do decide to say something – you needn’t try to make light of it or rush by it afterwards. At least not for my sake.” She smiled slightly. “I can take it, you know? ... I might not have verbally reacted in a serious manner, and instead used irony or sarcasm or whatever else I could think of, or I might have chosen not to react at all - but I can take it. How about…” Wiping the slight frown off her face, she almost smiled a little, “… I’ll try to react perfectly serious later?” Without looking away from his eyes, she put her left hand over her right hand and his left, which he had linked together before. “But not now, nor here.” She slanted her head a little. “Would that be alright with you?”

    After a long pause, so she could be sure he understood she wasn’t joking about, she finally flashed him a grin and slipped out of his embrace and his hand, stopped herself from heading off to the bar already, and instead gave Thűllir an amused look. “In any case, that drink seems like a good idea. Shall we?”
    Last edited by Arnyn Dealedwen; 16/Feb/2013 at 11:53 PM.

  19. kassiopi's Avatar
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    #119

    Narcano
    enjoyed the output of his words on the young lady and his friend. He relished the opportunity to watch Kamion and try to discern how the years had changed him. The lines of his face were deeper though only in a way that made him look harder and wiser but not aged. The half-elf could identify tiredness or disappointment or even resign in a man’s face; many of his clients over the years looked that way because most of them would only loose something very dear and then convey value to gold and jewels. At least those were the ones Narcano opted to work for, most times. Kamion looked to have the fire of his youth still inside him. He hoped he was not tricked… it did not happen often but it did happen. He also gave his most beguiling grin to the beauty beside him as he saw the most faint of pinks on her cheeks. She even made a curtsy before answering, her azure dress rippling as she bowed and reminding Narcano of other ladies that also curtsied in his presence ages before with admiration or respect or hate and rage or pure desire. He could remember their faces, faintly now. Well, this one seemed to have nothing of the sort and that was too be expected since she had just now met him. It seemed like his words had not affected her that much however. He had to admit he could not make all women bow before his skills of seduction!

    He smiled when Tindumhiell offered her name and mentioned Kamion’s promises. “Has he now?” he said and turned to him. He had a joyous smile on his face too. Narcano always felt strange warmth among the people of his father’s race. Their feelings emanated around them and he could tell when they were happy to see him or when they wished him dead. With elves he could not always discern their faces or the tone of their melodic voice or their ageless eyes. Kamion was happy to see him, that was sure but Narcano decided to stop flirting with Tindumhiell so as not to change his friend’s feelings. He was talking to her first after all and the half-elf would not want any misunderstandings such as the last time he had been to Umbar and a certain merchant unleashed his guards to hunt Narcano because of the intimacy he had with his lady wife. There were other beautiful women in the tavern right now and not one of them was having a conversation with one of his few and best friends.


    Kamion insisted on his request of a narration from him. Narcano was never one to boast and certainly not one to go about and talk of his unlawful business, something that would put him in an even more dangerous situation than the one he was already in. There were some bounties on his head down in the South and even one in Umbar and that was because he had been a bit sloppy. Those adventures were somewhat forgotten though and the people that held a grudge against him were in other places now, far away… some even as far enough as a fatal wound would carry them. There would be no harm in telling some of it to this young lady. It might even inspire her to go on an adventure on her own though Narcano was not so sure she would choose the same operations as he had.
    “Oh well, my friend” he said messing with his darkish hair, feeling the cold gold on his one and only earring placed on his right ear. He was not so good in story-telling. “You were always better than me in this stuff and this one will cost you some story-telling of your own. I won’t forget it, I do desire to listen to some of your tales before the night is done” he said. He noticed the couple still arguing on their table. Narcano decided whatever it was that caused their fight he could find out about it another night. His memories took him almost thirty years back when a younger Kamion’s training was almost finished and the bruises from their last sparring were still fresh on his body. Narcano had managed to make his time in Minas Tirith even more profitable by taking on some jobs of the local thieves organization. It could not be called a guild and most of them were petty in thieving and ended up being caught by the city’s guards but, surprisingly enough, they were quite skilled at acquiring information. Narcano used this information to sneak into the wealthiest merchants’ shops and forge their numbers a bit, making the Sea Ghosts’ job of stealing their shipments easier and he also relieved them of some valuable items. Narcano believed that every merchant or noble who had the power of oppressing the weak had to be taught a little humility. Also, if you were interested enough and asked about, it was almost certain the common people would have complaints regarding them. And if not, they were rich; they would not miss a tiny portion of their wealth that would provide for him and for the poor.


    So, with this philosophy in mind the half-elf operated well in the city and the centuries of training helped him to not be caught –though his partners in crime were not so lucky and he personally held no grudge to the city guard for arresting them since they did not share his ideas. It was time to leave with his days as a trainer over when he was discovered by one of the Umbar merchants arriving in the city to check on his business. They were always the most suspicious and most cunning of all –that was because they were also engaged in several illegal affairs. It would not hurt telling that story to the leady here, even though Kamion himself was involved; his friend's actions were always the noblest, even when he found himself in not at all noble situations.


    “My dear lady I can only tell I was blamed for mischief and illegal business when the only thing I struggled to do was rid the world of a tyrant. Yes, that was it exactly because this man we are talking about held most of Umbar’s wealth in his hands and much power and oppressed the people in his city. In my line of work, which it is adventuring as you might have realized and nothing darker as you might have suspected, it is traditional to protect the weak and look after their well-being. What was I to do when this man came to town and when knowing of the terrible fates many good men had in his ruffians’ hands?”
    He paused now to have his words sink in and check her response. The things he said were not entirely true of course; the man, Mailus Anzaldyn, was a monster yes, but a more discreet one and Narcano also lusted for his shipment of mithril and valuable gems. At the time mithril was not as rare as it was now and not sought by the Dark Lord in the land of shadow. Its value was unquestioned though and he knew he had to get his hands on it. Kamion knew most of it however and he did not wait to listen to his ironic comments.


    “I had to act. I try to give people chances and am no assassin. So I stole from him and I am proud to admit it, because it was a well-handled job and no one would have ever suspected if not for my good-for-nothing associates who were only supposed to distract the guards but decided to act on their own. I suppose they would have turned against me too later if not caught by the same people that had called me to train this young man by your side. Well, the city guard were on my heels and I had to run and had to leave most of the valuables behind”
    He still ached at the thought of the price he had accepted for all that mithril. Fortunately or not, he had kept the gems, hidden in a pouch always tightened to his belt. “At this point you may not agree with my actions and certainly Kamion will remember he had a desire to punch me for days after because I kind of tricked him to come with me. You see I needed a way out of town and he was enlisted in the military school… he was not suspected of anything while I, his teacher, was hunted and fallen from grace. I knew he was a good and honourable man and did not want to press him on helping me because of our friendship. I just wanted to have him beside me when I walked out of the gate. So, I did not reveal any of it but after we exited Minas Tirith. Sadly, the city’s guard had spotted me so they were after us for days and not only them but the merchant’s men also.” He looked at Kamion with an apologetic face and remembered how loyal a friend he had been. “I told him I would give myself in and confess everything so he would be blamed for nothing. We had no time to do that though because the merchant’s men were out for blood and we had to run from them. The city’s guard gave up after a while sending messages to the Rangers in Ithilien, for that is where we headed.”


    He could picture the flower-paved grass and the green trees of Ithilien, a place or rare beauty indeed. How they had ran and ran and learnt of Mailus’s business with a group of bandits in the northern foot of the Mountains of Shadow. Narcano thought they had a chance of escaping this without him ending up in prison. “This merchant, I had dealings with him in the past… of the same nature. This was my chance to lead him to his fall and as I said I do not kill people if I’m not defending myself.” Or if I’m not avenging someone, he thought. “He was working with some bandits that terrorized Ithilien. It was Kamion who discovered that when he overheard a night conversation. I have to admit, he is a natural at sneaking about people though from what I know of him he has no great liking to that kind of skills, right?” He winked at his friend and then reached and rested his hand on his shoulder. “What days Kamion, eh? We later learnt that the jewels I had stolen were of much greater value than I had thought. If only I had let them go in the city, there would be no hunting. They were some queen’s… or not? I am not entirely sure I remember. Usually I only notice how much they glow!” He decided to stop to take a breath and maybe leave Kamion comment a little. He so hated it when he was the only one talking for long.


    (OOC@Moriel: If you want anything changed in the story tell me and I'll edit. I left it in the middle so you can add some of your wonderful ideas to the background of our characters. Perhaps next time we can discuss it before... but I had too little time now unfortunately)
    Last edited by kassiopi; 18/Feb/2013 at 05:29 PM.
    Χαίρε Εαρέντιλ λαμπρότερε των αστεριών!

  20. Pele Alarion's Avatar
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    #120
    Faramir

    Faramir
    could sense that Mellya was not that willing to speak of her home or past, so he did not press her further on this topic. Yet it was rather obvious to him that she was prone to thinking and speaking of rather philosophical matters. He did not mind that, since he was often like that himself - Boromir often teased him because of it and his father called him lazy at those times when he caught his son standing by the Fountain ponderously. Faramir would have gone on to speak with Mellya about the questions of life or things he had read in the library, but he felt that in that case he would be keeping the young lady with him for too long and would set even more tongues wagging than this one dance would.

    "It has been my pleasure to entertain you, my lady," he said, once the dance had ended. "I see that you are also a deep thinker and we would find things to talk about, but you probably want to meet other people and make new friends." He didn't say anything about his own plans for the rest of the evening, and in fact he did not have anything specific in mind, only socializing. Courteously Faramir led her dance partner off the dance floor to return to where their drinks were still waiting for them.

    He decided to sit for a moment and think of who he should be entertaining next, so he did just that. Taking a sip of wine from his glass, he turned somewhat to observe the gathered people. A smile played on his lips, as he watched them enjoying the evening, the cares of everyday life forgotten for now. Perhaps they should do this once in a while, Faramir ​thought, just to remember that life was not only about duties and hardships.
    I would see the White Tree in flower again in the courts of the kings,
    and the Silver Crown return, and Minas Tirith in peace...

  21. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #121
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Thűllir listened to her words carefully, and returned her thoughtful look with one of his own as he ran her words through his mind and watched the play of emotion across her features. Gradually, a small smile blossomed on his face to match hers as he grasped what she was implying. So, he had been too cautious with his words? He supposed after his previous blunt honesty that the unexpected shyness had caught both of them off guard. When Kaylin lifted her hand to cover his own in a manner that seemed designed to reassure him, his smile softened, and he gave a brief nod of assent while holding her gaze. This dance of words and figuring each other out was new to him, and although he didn’t think he was as fragile as some of his words suggested, he was touched that she was being so careful with her words in return. The thought of being perfectly serious later also intrigued him, as he was curious about just what she meant by that.

    Thus, when she flashed him a grin and stepped back, he was content to let her go, and flashed a brief grin of his own in return as she slipped out of his embrace. Raising an eyebrow in mock seriousness at her amused look, he replied with laughter lacing his words. “Until later and elsewhere then M’lady…and yes we shall.” Amusement tugged at his lips, but he kept his face mostly straight as he gave a very slight bow and waved for her to proceed. Stepping lightly, he came up on her right side as they made their way through the press of people to the bar. His posture was one of escort, and although he didn’t touch her this time, his shoulders remained relaxed. Something about her last words had eased his instinctual tension, and although he remained watchful, he was no longer as hyper-vigilant as he had been earlier. Trust. The word whispered through his mind just before they got to the long oak bar where they had met scarce hours before.

    Lifting a hand to catch the bartender’s attention, he let the word settle a little before holding it up to the light again. Once he had gotten the barman’s nod of acknowledgement that they were the next priority of service, Thűllir settled his right arm on the bar and turned to look at Kaylin. He had been looking at her all evening, and yet he hadn’t really stepped back and looked at her since their first meeting. His eyes swept her silver attire and the rippling red hair before taking in the set of her shoulders and then being drawn back to her face and eyes. Bemused wonder and appreciation lit his eyes. When he had first met her something had called him to trust her, and somehow that had turned into reality in the intervening time, as she had responded with trust of her own in ways that startled and amazed him. Blinking slightly, he tilted his head and grinned at her, and then broke the silence before the bartender could get to them. “Since we have banished seriousness for now M’lady Kaylin, what is one thing that you have always wanted to do yet have not, either because you couldn’t or haven’t dared?”

    His eyes twinkled a light challenge to her as he awaited her response. When the bartender finally arrived to take their orders, Thűllir merely glanced at him a moment before speaking. “Get the lady what she would like, and I will have a glass of your spiced mead.” Sliding a few coins across the surface for payment, he returned his attention to Kaylin.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  22. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #122


    Nodding at his words of agreement, she followed his wave and started off for the bar, a bit slower than she would normally walk to give him ample time to step in with her. She looked at him sideways for a moment as they were walking towards the bar, and while she wasn’t really surprised, she did note there was no hand to her back now and that she could move freely – that made her more comfortable than she had been in a while. It seemed strange to her that someone’s presence could at once get her blood flowing faster as well as put her at ease. Looking in front of her again, Kaylin smiled at herself with hardly hidden amusement, and wondered what all that was about. She had a thought, but didn’t want to give it enough time to actually think it through.

    Thűllir gestured for the bartender and then put his right arm on the bar. Kaylin had put both of her forearms on the bar herself, leaning forwards a little to see if the bartender had seen Thűllir’s hand, and once she was reassured that that was the case, slid her arms off the bar until only her hands, which she linked together, rested on the bar. She turned her head towards the Ranger to her right and raised her eyebrows just a little bit at the look in his eyes, which she couldn’t quite place, before giving him one of those half-smiles she seemed to have in ample supply around him. His question caught her unawares, and she found herself frowning slightly in thought. She took some time, until the bartender came over and Thűllir gave his order. “I’ll just have the same,” she said absently, still thinking on how to reply to his question somewhat clearly. While the bartender got their drinks, she muttered: “Hmm. That is a really good question,” trying to find her own answer to it. “What I want to do and can do – I generally do,” she admitted, “Unless perhaps it would get me into loads of trouble... or if it is just a whim due to frustration or anything of the like. In other words, generally if I really want to do something, I’m not afraid to do it. If I know that what I want to do at a given time is wrong – then I don’t do it, also because I know that I won’t want to do it anymore after I’ve calmed down or thought it through, and so on and so forth. Basically - not daring to do something is mostly not the reason I don’t do something.”

    She paused and checked his face to see if he understood what she was trying to say... The point was that Kaylin just wasn’t one to let fear stop her from doing something she wanted to do! She slanted her head and grinned. “As for things I have wanted to do but couldn’t, well… I’m sure there have been many things over the years. Though I tend to forget about them pretty easily, apparently. Perhaps because I see no reason to fret or ponder over things I want and can’t do or have. The latest thing I’ve wanted to do but couldn’t…” A thought came to her that she didn’t really want to speak out loud, thinking it might make her appear difficult and nitpicky, but she didn’t feel like she had to hide anything from him, so she went ahead and just spoke her mind. “Depends on your definition of “couldn’t”, doesn't it… Couldn’t, because it is realistically impossible to do it, like… flying?” she asked, saying the first thing to come to mind. “Or couldn’t, because of expected conduct and such? Even though it may sound a bit ‘blah’ of me to insist on the meaning of the word, what you understand when you say ‘couldn’t’ really does make a difference.”

    The next thought that went through her head caused her some hesitation, but ater a moment her impulsive nature ended up the winner. “In the case of the latter, the latest thing I have wanted to do but couldn’t was in fact quite recent.” Another half-smile; a very amused one, and a rather mischievous one, too, was sent his way as her eyes locked on his. “Well, you were there too just one song ago. Think on it.”
    She directed her gaze to the bar as their drinks were brought, thinking she should pay for the next round if there was still to be one. “As for couldn’t in the sense of realistically impossible – or at least at the moment -, I don’t think I can offer you anything airy or light just off the top of my head. My current answer would take us back to the realm of the serious. However, that doesn’t mean you couldn’t enlighten me with an answer of your own to that question… What about yourself then? Anything you would have liked to do recently, but couldn’t? Or that you didn’t dare to?”

  23. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #123
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    At Kaylin’s thoughtful frown in response to his question, Thűllir’s grin gentled into a faint smile, and he watched her with curious interest. Listening to her response, he was delighted that she took his question seriously and was answering in such a thorough fashion. He thought it was sweet that she was giving the answer such care. Nodding with agreement and understanding at her comments, he was nonetheless amused that she was so careful to differentiate daring from not being able to do something. It fit well with his previous assessment of her independence and self-assurance in most areas. His curiosity was further piqued when she carefully differentiated between not being able to do something because it was physically impossible, and being restrained by propriety of conduct and custom. He agreed that it was an important distinction, but wasn’t sure why she had made it at this time.

    When she paused in seeming indecision, he tilted his head a little more, and raised his eyebrow slightly in query. Kaylin’s eventual answer, however, was not at all what he expected. Fighting the grin that wanted to break out, Thűllir’s lips twitched with suppressed mirth a moment before giving in briefly at her amused and quite mischievous half-smile when their gaze met. Yes he had been there as well. Clearing his throat briefly and quietly, he was able to get the broad grin under control again before the bartender arrived with their drinks. So, he hadn’t been the only one working to practice restraint then. He liked that implication.

    Picking up his own drink, Thűllir waited for her to lift hers as well, as she was busy turning the question back on him. Fair enough…He mused as he watched her. Once she picked her glass up, he lifted his in a silent toast to her and then took a sip as he tried to collect his thoughts. The first bit was easy enough to answer. “Is there anything I would have liked to do recently but couldn’t?” The he repeated the question lightly. “Well you have already answered that for me after a fashion Kaylin, although I admit to not only being limited to the timeframe of the song.” His smile cracked through, but he quickly tamped it again. She was right in saying that could be dangerous to talk about further if they wanted to refrain from serious conversation. Taking another sip of the spiced mead to ease his suddenly dry throat, he drew out the tasting a moment in order to think a little before swallowing and speaking again.

    “As to the other definition of your question, I suppose there are things that I have not dared before, but normally because the consequences of the action would be dire or illogical. For example, there have been times when I was out scouting alone and came on an incursion into our lands. When I knew I was so outnumbered as for it to be foolhardy to attack, I had to refrain, no matter my desire to avenge myself on them. I know it would be a waste to try to win the war on my own.” He tried a small smile. “On a lighter note, there have been other things I have not dared as well. I have not dared to swim in the sacred pools, no matter how tempting they may be, for I revere our traditions too highly to break those customs. Yet in a similar vein, I hope to learn to fly like those birds that I have envied my whole life. Those birds that can soar on the air currents far above the troubles of our woods and world, and sing of the dawn and growing things without a care for the dark below. I suppose I am trying to turn one small I dare not or could not into I can and will try.” Thűllir shrugged lightly and gave her a mildly apologetic look. “I can’t seem to avoid serious topics M’lady. Part of the difficulty of where I live and work I suppose.”

    Pushing off from the bar a little, he turned his back mostly toward it as he shifted his angle toward her. Glancing down at the golden swirl of liquid in his glass, he didn’t really see it. Instead, he was trying to figure out where to go next. Eventually he continued, lifting his eyes to her as he spoke. “One thing that I haven’t tried yet and so have not yet dared is swimming in the sea. I have only once been down near the cost in southern Ithilien, and was amazed at the roll and pound of the surf on the beach and the waves on the rocks. I have heard that the water is actually good for swimming, but as I am only used to river swimming I wouldn’t know how to go about it. Someday I hope to have the opportunity and courage to try. You mentioned that you loved swimming Kaylin…have you ever swum in the sea?”
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  24. Tavari Mordagnir's Avatar
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    #124

    Kamion crossed his arms and grinned, listening to Narcano's recounting of the story- aye, it had been an adventuresome, if troublesome time. And if truth be told, had been one of those moments that tested his evaluation of the world and circumstances. Kamion had never been so naive as to believe that anything was all black and white- everything must have its shades of grey, even if they were only slight, but he had always been a firm believer in the strong lines between right and wrong, and the need to do right, no matter the cost. Now, with more than fifty years behind him, he had more experience and perspective by which to judge things, but when Narcano had told him of what he had done, after Kamion had seen him safely out of the city, how he had stormed! Even in his youth he was of a particularly gentle nature and not inclined to temper, but the half-elf's deception had struck such a contrary chord that he could not help himself but rage. Yet even so, he had been unwilling to abandon his friend to Anzaldyn's dogs once the opportunity to turn Narcano in to the city guards had passed, and they had fled together. Kamion laughed aloud at Narcano's comment about his sneaking around, and took the opportunity of his friend's pause to interject. "Yes indeed, at the time I had little use for skulking about in the dark, but I've since found it can come in very handy! Fortunately it's a mostly natural skill, for I don't think I would have put in the time to learn it, given the choice. Tracking, yes, skulking- no. And I had my reward in the end for putting up with your antics, my friend, did I not? A little ball of glittering shine, that I've still got tucked away, mind. Thrift, after all, is one of my many virtues." Kamion chuckled self-deprecatingly. "Neither do I know to whom the jewels belonged, nor at this point do I care to, let it rather remain an entertaining and mysterious anecdote of my past!"

    As he had spoken, a prickling had arisen on the back of Kamion's neck, along with the uncanny feeling that he was being watched. It was true that such a feeling could afflict anyone, but to a soldier it was more acute, and he was more likely to know when it was true. The Dúnadan turned his head to glance casually around the gathering, and his gaze locked with that of a woman in a blood-red gown (Morwen). She was staring, yes, but also observing, it seemed, and there was something calculating behind the golden thread of the stare, even interrupted as it was by the passage of other merrymakers across it. Something also about her physicality was wrong- the dress fit her like a glove, and was clearly familiar, but she did not seem to belong in it, nor in the setting in which they found themselves. Curious, but not off-put, Kamion gave her a cheerful smile before turning again to Narcano and Tindumhiell. "Excuse me for a moment, please, I think I see someone that I may know." It was a small lie, and not a harmful one. And in truth, it could be that he had met this girl before, much as he had met Tindumhiell, though he was likely to have remembered it at least a bit. He clapped the half-elf on the shoulder and inclined his head to the maiden before turning and setting off across the floor weaving his way through the milling people, until he had reached the woman (Morwen). "Hello," Kamion said, bowing slightly, again with a smile. "Pardon my rudeness, but I saw you looking so intently in my direction, and wondered if we had met before."

  25. Morwen Daegomir's Avatar
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    #125
    Morwen

    When the man she was intently staring at (Kamion) turned his head suddenly toward her, she found herself surprised by the force of his gaze. Normally she found herself the one holding another to the spot as they squirmed uncomfortably within the confines of her golden stare, but now she thought she might be getting a bit of an idea what it was like to be on the receiving end.

    His eyes were a deep startling blue, and they held experience behind him that belied his apparent years. However, such appearances could be quite deceiving, and she knew better than to assume that there was no more to him than met the eye. And her eye perceived plenty. He bore himself nobly, and there was a sharp look to his gaze, denoting a quick intelligence and, furthermore, a deep wisdom to go with it.

    She gave a slight and nearly imperceptible start when she realized he was moving toward her, and tried to move her feet to melt away into the crowd; a skill she had mastered while within her father's Court. However, she found herself rooted to the spot, mesmerized by the deep sapphire gaze focused upon her. It was a feeling quite unfamiliar to her, and she felt a sensation of panic and instinct began to knot in her stomach. She quickly tamped it down, surprised at herself for catching it so quickly. But it would not do to cause a scene here. After all, she was in rather enough trouble with the Army. Her performance at Cair Andros- Morwen cut off the thought with an inward shudder. There was no doubt her name had already spread like wildfire upon the atrocities she had committed in battle recently. She felt lucky that she hadn’t been flogged publicly at the very least. Not that what was coming was going to be particularly pleasant.

    Morwen found herself startled out of her thoughts as the man suddenly stopped in front of her. Why was he over here? Did he not have companions across the room to speak with? She felt her muscles tense imperceptibly, and her hand again brushed the side of her dress, unconsciously checking for the dagger hidden. If anyone knew she was armed right now, she would not doubt be in even worse trouble than she already was. However, it had been a precaution she had always taken when wearing this dress at Court; and she would have felt utterly vulnerable and naked without it.


    It took her a moment to realize the man had spoken; she merely stared at him a moment, and then her brain kicked into gear. “Met?” Her voice sounded too loud in her own ears. There was something familiar about him; a memory tickled the back of her mind, but then it was gone. Probably nothing. And if it was something, she did not care to drag up more memories. The last time that had happened, she had gone all but catatonic. Helpless and useless. Another shudder ran through her, this time less subtle than before. If she kept this up, she was going to end up huddled in a shivering ball on the floor.

    She realized that she was still standing there, and had not yet fully replied to him. Really, why had he come over to her? “Forgive me; I find myself much distracted this evening.” The smooth speech of a noblewoman flowed easily from her tongue; as though the dress she wore revived that part of her, though it was many years gone. “However, I do not think we have met. Most assuredly I would have remembered.” The words were hollow; the useless and empty chatter of the kind she had always mocked so heartily. But what did it matter? She could hide behind them; perhaps if she seemed simply to be another foolish woman at a Ball he would leave her be. Unfortunately, after one glance into those deep blue eyes, she knew that he would not be the kind easily fooled. That, and the fact that he moved with the grace and power of a soldier told her that he was not someone to be trifled with. And there was something else about him that caught her off guard, something she barely understood and would never admit to herself. A strange sensation stirred in the pit of her stomach, and Morwen found herself at a loss to interpret it. Was she afraid of this man? She should not be. She had seen enough in her life, people and things much more dangerous than this man. That did not mean she should not be cautious and wary; but why did he put her so on edge? What was it about him?

    She realized she should have introduced herself by now. If she wanted to keep up the façade of being just another silly woman at a Ball, politeness dictated she behave in accordance with standard social protocol. By this time, it was not a piece of information she wished to give; but if she did not give it, it would only make her seem all the more strange. And she did not want any more of his attention. “I am called Morwen,” she finally added, though by then it was tacked on belatedly and with none of the social grace that the situation called for. Inwardly she cursed herself for her sloppiness, but another glance into his startling eyes told her that it would not have mattered if she had behaved as perfectly or foolishly as the next dame. There would be no fooling him, whoever he was.
    Last edited by Morwen Daegomir; 23/Feb/2013 at 05:47 PM.

  26. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #126


    She lifted her drink when he did, though just a little. Kaylin was more interested in his answer than social conduct. Unconsciously, she mirrored his movements and sipped from the glass when he did, focusing on the little changes in his eyes and facial expression as he thought about how he might answer his own question. Strangely patiently, she waited to hear what he had to say. After his first few sentences, he smiled brilliantly for just a moment, and Kaylin couldn’t help herself from doing the same, considering the meaning behind his words. Yet, she didn’t see any reason to hide or rein it in, and her smile didn’t disappear or even so much as fade as she watched him drinking from his glass again, nor when he continued to answer her. Not limited to the timeframe of the song? Those words she found especially exquisite, not because they were poetic or extremely beautifully put, but because they held a wonderful significance.

    The rest of his answer was pretty serious, and Kaylin’s smile grew into a grin for a moment as he recognized that himself. She nodded to convey she understood, and remained quiet for the moment because she thought he might have more to say, and she wanted to hear all of it before speaking up again herself. When Thűllir repositioned himself and turned towards her more, she automatically did the same without even thinking about it. She realized it the very moment she had done so, and frowned internally, wondering what that was about. It was almost as if her body unconsciously responded to every move he made, and that idea both intrigued and troubled her – the former a bit more than the latter, but still… the thought made her smile lessen. After taking a sip from her glass, she decided not to ponder on it now, but instead to focus on the subject of their conversation.

    Thűllir mentioned how he hadn’t dared to swim in the sea yet, but that he would like to someday, if he had the chance and the courage to do it. At his question of whether she’d ever swum in the sea, her smile came back, and it even quickly turned into a grin. “Ah, the sea,” she said calmly, nodding. “I have indeed done so.” She turned her glass round and round in her hands as she looked him in the eyes. “It is very different from swimming in a river, yet also remarkably the same. Once you get past the biggest waves…” Pausing, she slanted her head a little. “Yes… different yet similar. You will understand once you do it. Though I would advise you to try it in any other season rather than winter, especially for a first time experience. The thing about swimming in the sea is that you need to pick a suitable spot, and make sure you don’t wander away from the coastline too far. You always need to keep an eye on it, just to be certain you’re not subconsciously moving further and further away from it.” With a grin, she took another sip. “I’m not scaring you, am I? It’s really not that dangerous if you know how to go about it.”

    Her grin softened into a soft smile while she considered something. “Perhaps you would allow me to show you what it is like, one day.” It sounded remotely like a question. The thought of helping him to do something he would like to do but didn’t dare to, appealed to her. Maybe also because it would be an experience he’d never forget, and she liked the idea of being part of such a memory. “In the sea, if you have your back to the coast and your face towards the endless water disappearing behind the horizon, with water all around you, you get a rare feeling. Some make more of that feeling than it really is, don’t get me wrong, exaggerating and embellishing… but it is a feeling worth having at least once.”

    Not having looked away from his eyes ever since he had asked his question, Kaylin thought perhaps it was time to pull her gaze away, but she didn’t really want to, and so she didn’t. “So,” she continued, figuring that if he wanted to take her up on her offer, he could do so anytime, and saying more didn’t mean his window of opportunity had closed. “Maybe it’s time to make the rounds? I’m afraid I’ve been keeping you from things such as greeting your Captain. Not that I’m sorry…” A grin. “Nor do I think you’re sorry about being distracted either… I’m just bringing it up to make sure you don’t miss out on your chance to do it, because you might feel sorry about it if you don’t do it at all.”
    Last edited by Arnyn Dealedwen; 23/Feb/2013 at 07:12 PM.
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  27. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #127
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Kaylin’s smiles were giving his heart quite the workout this evening, Thűllir thought bemusedly, as it first leapt at her brilliant smile, stuttered a little when it briefly lessened, and then sighed when it softened. He tried not to show his reactions on his face, but was sure he probably ended up looking a little dazzled as he watched her and listened to her response. He noticed her shift towards him in an instinctual way that was surprising and strangely comforting, despite the subsequent mild uncertainty in her expression.

    He was thoroughly intrigued by Kaylin’s description of the sea and how one would go about swimming in it. She was right that winter was probably not the time to try it out the first time. He gave a little shiver at the thought of icy waters. Find the right spot. Aye, he had come upon a rocky shore last time, which had not looked in the least inviting or safe. Sipping at his mead, he tried to picture what she was talking about. Thűllir raised his eyebrows at her challenge that he might find it too dangerous to try, but when she followed it with suggestion that she show him someday and smiled at him that way, his face relaxed into an answering soft smile. Listening to the rest of her description, it did truly sound like a wonderful experience, and the lingering possibility that she might be there with him when he did give it a try made it all that more appealing.

    Kaylin held his gaze with her own, so although she paused for a moment he didn’t reply right away, as it felt like she had something more to say. In the past she had frequently broken eye contact, so he was intrigued by the slight shift. When she went on to suggest that they make their rounds of greeting now, he matched her grin with one of wry amusement as laughter lit his eyes. “Aye M’lady, perhaps we should go greet the Captain and others now, although I cannot say I have been at all disappointed in delaying. Nor can I let you take all the credit for delay, although you are the one who has kept me so thoroughly and pleasantly distracted.”

    Straightening from his leaning position, Thűllir emptied the rest of his glass in one long draught, and replaced the glass on the bar. Reaching for her right hand with his own, he clasped it loosely and then lifted it and covered them with his left before speaking again. “You are right that I may regret not greeting the Captain at all, but more because I wish to introduce you than anything else.” His grin had settled into a quiet smile, and he now stepped out to her right and turned slightly so that he could link her hand through the crook of his left arm. “Shall we M’lady Kaylin?” He asked with a slightly enquiring note in his voice.

    At her cue, they began to make their way toward where the Captain was seated, weaving through the other couples to find Faramir while he was between dances and sitting at his ease. On their way, Thűllir bent his head to murmur in her ear. “By the way Kaylin, I would be delighted if you would show me the sea someday.” It would be a truly unforgettable experience. But he needed to pull his attention back to the present, as they soon reached the Captain’s side. Thűllir straightened imperceptibly, and then bowed very slightly. “Good evening Captain. It is good to see you here away from the forest for a while. May I have the honor of introducing Kaylin of Linhir to you?” Shifting slightly to turn a little toward her, Thűllir gave a slight wave of introduction to each. “M’lady Kaylin, this is Captain Faramir, who leads our company in Ithilien.”
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  28. Tavari Mordagnir's Avatar
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    #128



    "Oh, my mistake, then." Kamion shrugged slightly, when she assured him that they had not met before. A sharp sort of change had taken place in the woman before she begged his pardon- the flicker of panic he thought he had seen in her eyes smoothed over, and the timorous tension of her body relaxed. Small things, but easy enough to notice when one's attention had already been attracted by unusual happenings. Her words seemed almost rehearsed, although she could not have known he would approach her or what he would say; the polite formulas that he had heard dropping from the mouths of some of the highly cultured young women he had occasionally met. There was nothing whatever impolite about them, but not much in them either, and they certainly did not match the attitude of the golden stare that had so pierced him. If he had to hazard, Kamion would guess that there was something amiss with this woman, and why she was here, if so, was a curious question indeed. But, it wouldn't do to go charging off prying and prodding at her, and so he merely kept his friendly smile in place; after all, this was a night intended for merriment. "Morwen," he repeated, drawing out the r slightly, the name rolling easily off his tongue. "Lovely. I am called Kamion, son of Darellon. What brings you to the ball tonight? Have you come alone? I'm afraid I was harangued into coming by a group of friends, but the evening hasn't been entirely unpleasant so far." he chuckled, giving her just the shade of a wink. It seemed that he had heard the name Morwen since returning to the city from campaign in the east, but he couldn't be sure, or place where; perhaps she was newly come to the army, and he would discover more upon making his way to the headquarters in the morning. Or maybe that wasn't it at all. Who knew?

  29. Morwen Daegomir's Avatar
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    #129
    Morwen Daegomir
    Trapped

    Morwen
    could see that he was not fooled in the least by her empty words, nor indeed any of her façade. Those brilliant blues eyes delved deep into her golden ones, and she saw that he was not a man to have merely left his group to chat at random with some mindless haughty woman. He was intrigued in the same way she had been; by the fact that there was something more than met the eye to both of them. She cursed inwardly again; why had she allowed herself to become so prone to underestimating those around her lately? It was going to get her killed. Or, and this scenario was rather more likely, it was going to get everyone else around her killed. She cringed inwardly at the thought, a flash of recent battle coming to mind. Morwen quickly pushed it away; she knew she was damaged goods; and who knew what she might do if she ended up trapped in some kind of traumatic psychological state again. It was something she was rather hoping to avoid for a while.

    Realizing that she once again had lost her focus, she brought her attention back to the man before her just in time to hear his questions. Again, she chided herself; this was getting absolutely ridiculous. Her focus and ability to be aware of every detail of a situation had always been something she could rely on. Lately, she didn’t feel very sure of anything. His introduction had given her a bit of a start; there was something … familiar. It was not his name, but rather the name of his father. Darellon. Why was that name familiar to her? Now that he said it; there was something about Kamion’s looks that tickled at the back of her mind; as though trying to bring something to mind that she knew. Something from her past. That, however, was dangerous, and she knew it. Her past had been nothing but trouble for her lately, and if he was here to dredge it up; she wanted nothing to do with it. The whole reason she was in this mess with the army was because of it; she had nearly killed enough people, and her own mind was a complete mess. And why was he appearing? Why now? Who was he? Had her father sent him?

    The room seemed to freeze suddenly, and she felt and icy hand grip her spine. Perhaps this was the true fear that rested behind every ill-fated reaction, every ghost that haunted her, every mistrusting glance. Perhaps what she truly feared, what drove her to so mistrust and react to everything and everyone around her the way she did, was … him. But that was not something she was ready to admit; even to herself. But all that fear, all that anger, all that mistrust; it had to go somewhere. And the man before her was the reason it was being dragged up again. Again, she found herself growing suspicious of this eerily familiar man and all his questions. What possible link could he have to her past? No. She did not care to know. This was exactly what she was trying to prevent. Morwen’s golden eyes narrowed subtly as she forced herself not to think about it. She could not afford another episode, not now.

    However, it was too late. Her brain was working overtime, and an earlier thought burst abruptly into her head that she simply could not ignore. What if her father had sent him? What if, after all these years, he was still after her? If he had found her at last, she had no doubt his wrath would be terrible. And the combined wrath of her father, Lord Belegrond, and her husband, Lord Hirgond… This time the shudder that ran through her was easily visible. Morwen found herself losing the tenuous grip she had on the panic and survival instinct knotting her stomach. Her hand moved toward her dagger, which was still hidden; though this time the movement conscious. But this would not do. There were too many other people around her. She could not hold a dagger to someone’s throat in the middle of a room full of people. And besides, many of those around her were fellow soldiers or officers. Perhaps even this Kamion was one himself. The thought made her suddenly become aware of how close she was to drawing her weapon; and her hand froze in the act. She had just been about to reveal the fact that she had a dagger on her person, though no doubt it was already obvious to someone trained as a soldier or warrior, as this man no doubt was. Again, she had showed her hand prematurely, an act that would have gotten her killed quickly in Court, and she was beginning to become quite troubled by just how much she was slipping. But she had nothing to lose now; this man was no fool, and who knew exactly what he was thinking about her now. And if he had been sent by her father…

    Morwen abruptly moved forward, right up to Kamion, so that no one around them would hear what she had to say next. However, she found herself taken by surprise at the sudden proximity she had brought on herself. He was taller than she had realized, and his presence was rather overwhelming. Unfortunately, she had also put herself in a position where she had to tilt her head almost all the way back to look at him. It was not as though she was short; but her 5 feet 7 inches didn’t quite measure up to his height, which she guessed had to be near 6 and a half feet. It wasn’t only his height that made him somewhat overwhelming. If he hadn’t had the presence to go with it; it would not have phased her in the least. But years of Court life and even life in the streets had taught her to read people, and do it well; and she knew a dangerous man when she met one. But it was too late; she had already moved herself into the disadvantageous position, and she had to finish what she had started. Tilting her head back to lock her fierce golden gaze on him, she spoke in a low but dangerous voice.

    “I do not know who you are, nor do I care. But if Lord Belegrond sent you, I can assure you that I will fight you with every last breath in my body. Whatever reward he has offered cannot be enough for how I will make you and any others sent by him suffer.” She paused momentarily, willing herself not to show the panic and fear that she was hiding behind her cold fiery gaze. It would do no good if he knew that her father was the one thing she truly feared in this world; she had no wish to offer him such a weakness. “I suggest you go back to where you came from. There is nothing for you here.”
    Last edited by Morwen Daegomir; 01/Mar/2013 at 06:26 PM.

  30. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #130


    Watching him calmly as he reacted to her words about the sea, Kaylin noticed within herself the slightest bit of trepidation. And though most would say that was due to thinking he might decline her offer of showing him how to swim in the sea, it was in reality because she thought he would accept it. If he would take her up on the offer, she would have put herself into a rather difficult situation, given everything. However, if the emotion was visible at all, he would definitely have to be looking for it to notice, and she didn’t think the Ranger was waiting for it or expecting it. At least there was that, then.

    The amusement in his eyes as he spoke elated her. Hearing that he was not in the least disappointed about delaying further greetings, and what that implied, made her bite her bottom lip as she was grinning. His added words that he couldn’t let her take all the credit for it, didn’t do anything to change her elation; in fact, she appreciated them. They showed he was his own person, and chose to do what he did rather than let anyone else determine his actions – something she obviously valued. Her blue-grey eyes continued to watch him as he emptied his glass and set it down onto the bar. When Thűllir took her hand, she found herself holding her breath. The renewed physical contact, innocent as it was, at once drew her towards him as well as put her on guard. Both of those reactions, contradictory as they were, resulted from the goings-on of the evening, and made perfect sense in her world. She appealed to her willpower and common sense to maintain her composure, though that caused her to tense up a little bit and replaced most of the spark in her eyes and the grin on her face with a more neutral – which perhaps now would look serious compared to her earlier expression – and determined expression. Determined not to give in to the spell he might put on her again if she wasn’t careful.

    He placed her hand on his arm, and Kaylin did the best she could not to lessen or increase the pressure of her fingers and hand. She couldn’t quite figure out why that was important, but somehow she just felt that it was. “Hmm,” she replied to his question with a nod, looking at him from the side, a half-smile and eye twinkle getting past her guard without her realizing it. When they set off though, she looked straight ahead at where they were going in order to focus. A moment later, he bent his head to murmur something into her ear, and she closed her eyes for a split second and straightened her back a bit more, mentally asking herself if he realized how hard he was making it for her to simply keep walking as would be expected of her and as befitted a proper lady. She wasn’t a proper lady, for one, and his actions weren’t really facilitating following what she knew to be the socially expected course here. She kept her eyes straight ahead as she listened to what he had to say, and the first thing she thought was how grateful she was that it was winter, which meant she’d have ample time to figure out how to go about that outing, someday.

    Once they reached Faramir, Thűllir greeted the man and introduced her after giving a slight bow. Kaylin nodded to the Captain with a slight smile, and to the woman (Mellya) near him. “Well met, Captain Faramir.” Her eyes settled on Mellya. “My lady.”
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  31. Tavari Mordagnir's Avatar
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    #131



    The calm, complacent politeness receded from the woman's face as quickly as it had come- something he had said must have struck her wrongly, but for the life of him Kamion could not fathom what. Distrust, clearly.. and was there a hint of fear, now? He edged back slightly, not wanting to intimidate her, however unintentionally. This was not going at all how he had hoped- not that he had hoped for anything specific, he had just noticed something odd and gone to investigate, thinking maybe that, being ostensibly alone, she might like to join the little group he had found himself in. Cursing the so-called friends who had dragged him to this event in the first place, Kamion mentally promised himself that if he ever again felt a deep disinclination to attend a social gathering, he would respect it and stay home like the old man he was occasionally accused of being. The unpleasant silence stretched out between Morwen and himself, and Kamion's thoughts raced for something to say, but not knowing what he had done wrong, he couldn't think of how to fix it. Her hand moved and his eyes darted down- of course, she had a dagger in her sleeve! It was not a shape he had been looking for, but now betrayed by the motion, it was easy enough to spot. The various ways he could disarm and restrain her flitted through the Dúnadan's mind, but he remained still,a and her hand stopped, short of drawing the weapon, and fell back. To an outside observer, nothing much would appear to have just happened, but from inside the microcosm of the situation, it had been a dangerous moment indeed. Unexpectedly, the woman jolted forward, stepping right up to Kamion so that he could feel the brush of her skirts against his ankle, and the heat of her body close to his. Startled by this turn of events, he looked down, having to tuck his chin almost right down to his chest to do so properly with her this close and so much lesser in height.

    "I do not know who you are, nor do I care," she said, her voice low and icy, "But if Lord Belegrond sent you, I can assure you that I will fight you with every last breath in my body." What was this? Belegrond… the name was familiar, some derelict nobleman out in the wilderness his father had once gone to administer an order to, or something of the kind. As Kamion thought of it, he could see the twist of disgust that had marred his father's mouth when speaking the name, many years ago. "Whatever reward he has offered," Morwen went on, "cannot be enough for how I will make you and any others sent by him suffer. I suggest you go back where you came from. There is nothing for you here." This was not the sort of speech casually made by a young woman wishing to rid herself of unwanted attention, nor was their any hint of a joke or deceit in her eyes, which he well believed had seen the suffering she proclaimed herself willing to inflict. This was the speech of a determined, desperate, hunted woman. Kamion took a swift step back, removing himself from her close proximity, and spoke, low and calm, but firmly. "I do not know who you think I might be, nor where you think I might have come from. I am Kamion, of Minas Tirith, a sergeant of its army. I have lived here my whole life. I do not want to fight you, nor do I know why anyone would, but if you say as you have implied that there are those who wish to fight, or hunt, or capture you, then I believe you. Morwen," he resisted the urge to grasp her by the shoulders- Kamion did not think she would thank him for his physical contact, "you are safe in Minas Tirith. If you are in danger, I can arrange for protection for you, for an investigation into the Lord Belegrond even, if you are willing to state what has happened between you. Please, if you are facing such peril, let me help you."

  32. Morwen Daegomir's Avatar
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    #132
    Morwen Daegomir

    She saw his eye catch the spot where the dagger was hidden, and knew that card had been played and lost. He nearly had to tuck his chin into his chest to look her in the eye; a position that might have been comical under different circumstances. However, she found nothing amusing about the current situation. Morwen’s heart rate picked up as her adrenaline kicked in; no doubt driven by fear and a need for survival. It certainly had nothing to do with how close they were standing; she could feel the heat of his body, but that- was dangerous. Dangerous was what it was. She needed to get away from him; a sudden influx of emotions and responses hit her and became a mangled mess. The golden-eyed woman shook her head suddenly, as though the abrupt movement could clear out all the past memories and present sensations that were threatening to overwhelm her. Again, the question came. Who was this man?

    Just as the entire situation was about to overwhelm her beyond the point of any sense of poise or control; Kamion took a sudden step back, as though sensing just exactly the fiery turmoil that was wreaking havoc on her at that very moment. She gasped as he did so; the movement so shocked and simultaneously relieved her. Morwen found herself taking deep but frantic breaths, as though she had lost the ability to take in oxygen, and was trying to compensate by breathing as quickly and deeply as possible. She tried to calm her breathing patterns, still somewhat in shock at his intuitive movement and reactions to her. No one she had met thus far since returning to the supposed world of ‘civilization’ had understood her in this way, or offered her space when she needed it. Strange, that he seemed to be able to sense this from her.

    He was speaking now, and she realized he was saying that he was a Sergeant in the Army of Minas Tirith. The half-crazed breathing pattern broke and she found her strangled breaths coming out in a soft burst of half panicked laughter. Sergeant Kamion, is it?” She offered a fist to chest salute, right at the edge of mockery, before continuing, “How is it you do not know…” Suspicion bit at her once again, but there was something about those deep blue eyes that spoke of utter honesty. She was a good reader of people, and something told her strongly that this man was not lying to her. With an effort, she dismissed the suspicion, and continued, “Perhaps you have been out of town for some time, but once Head Quarters has informed you of my…” She paused, unsure of how exactly to state it, “recent actions,” she finally continued, “You may not be so keen to help me. You might find your efforts better spent protecting others from me.” She sensed him almost moving toward her again, but something stopped him just as she was about to tense up, and he stood his ground. It perplexed her, for she sensed no ill will of any kind from him. It had not been an attack or threat he had almost moved to make; but if not those, then what?

    Then what he had said sunk in. Protection. He was offering protection. What did that even mean? Why did he care? Suspicion loomed again, but one glance at him told her that he was completely in earnest. But why? What would he gain from it? There was something about him, and she did not understand it, that made her want to trust him. She had never had that impulse before, not like this, and its strangeness made her almost more wary. And then his final words caught up to her. Lord Belegrond. She had given away her father’s name. She had spoken it, and if he were searching, if someone had heard, if this man were untrustworthy in any way… A cold lump of fear settled in the pit of her stomach, and she felt her heart rate pick up once more.

    “An investigation?” The words came out soft, she struggled to keep her voice steady. “No.” The word came soft at first, but she repeated it again, more vehemently, “No. Forget this name. Forget I said anything.” She started to turn away, but something made her add, “You cannot help me. No one can. Not against him.” The vehemence that had entered her voice for a moment had disappeared almost as quickly as it had come, and her voice broke on the last word. Why had she said that? She had given away too much; shown too much. She had given him power over her. But she was so tired. What did it matter anymore? She was broken; that much was clear. There was something wrong with her and she suspected it was unfixable. Morwen felt something welling up inside of her; something unfamiliar as it was frightening. She was at a complete loss for what it was until she felt moisture at the corner of her eye and her vision blurred slightly. A single tear trailed its way down her cheek, and she brought her hand to her face, more astonished than anything. She had not cried since … a day many years gone, when as a little girl her father had taught her a lesson about showing weakness that she had not soon forgotten. And, strangely, she only felt relief at the act. It did not matter anymore. If this man wanted to take her to Lord Belegrond; at least… it would finally be finished. The fear, the constant glancing over her shoulder, the power he held over her; she could give in. She could rest. As though her body was responding to her mental and emotional exhaustion; she suddenly felt her knees buckle beneath her as the floor rushed up to meet her.
    Last edited by Morwen Daegomir; 02/Mar/2013 at 04:13 AM.

  33. Pele Alarion's Avatar
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    #133
    Faramir

    Faramir had been sitting for just a few moments, when Thullir approached him with a young lady, who seemed rather familiar to him. He searched his mind quickly, trying to connect her face and name with a specific place or event. It took only a few moments, which nonetheless felt to him like eternity, but eventually he realized this was the same soldier who had fought alongside him at Cair Andros.

    He rose from his seat to return the greetings properly with a courteous bow of his own. "Thullir, Lady Kaylin, it is good indeed to meet you in a more civilised environment, not a battlefield" he said with a smile, and then included Mellya. "And this beautiful lady here is Mellya." Unsure if they had only come to exchange the greetings or if they would stay a while, Faramir remained standing.

    "Are you enjoying the ball this far?"
    he asked by a way of small talk."I have just been thinking that we should have events like this more often, though I doubt the Steward would support such an idea and extend his sponsorship. Though in my opinion anything that brings joy and smiles is worth investing in, don't you think?"
    I would see the White Tree in flower again in the courts of the kings,
    and the Silver Crown return, and Minas Tirith in peace...

  34. Tavari Mordagnir's Avatar
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    #134



    Her breathing was deep but stertorous, those sorts of hitching breaths that often beset one fighting the strangles of sobbing, but there were no tears, only this frenetic patter of breath that she fought to control. Morwen's reaction to the statement of his rank, meant to be an assurance, could hardly have surprised Kamion more- nor could her statements that followed. It seemed she was a soldier, recently come to the army- and, yes, that further stirred the memory of where he had heard her name on this return; floating about the headquarters among the other officers, and he had been told that he would receive a brief in due course after his official reinstatement, for it was likely that he would be involved in some training with this person to come. But as of yet he had no details, and no idea what this woman could possibly have done to warrant such a denunciation of herself, by herself. Surely if she had done something as terrible as she seemed to think, she would not be free to roam the streets, much less attend a ball- however poor a choice it might appear that had been. And why, if she was in the service of the army, did she have such a fear of her pursuer? Surely there was no safer place- nor a more simple way of seeking protection? Kamion was not stupid, most of the women he had contact with were soldiers also, and he knew perfectly well that they could be just as capable of defending themselves as men and that there was no reason to assume a woman must be a damsel-in-distress, but there would be no shame in anyone, male or female, young, old, what have you, of seeking protection or assistance if they were in such risk as Morwen professed. So why, why had she not done so, seemed determined not to do so?

    So many questions from a few moments' interaction, but none that seemed likely to be answered here and now. And suddenly, all the violence and all the tension had gone out of her voice, out of her body, and her speech became soft- almost helpless; resigned? Whoever this Lord Belgrond was, he must be a man of singular evil to cause such wild changes of distress and anger in the woman. As Kamion watched, Morwen's eyes welled, and a single large tear slipped its way down her face, leaving a damp echo in its wake, dropping off her chin to disappear into the fabric of her dress below, leaving a small, dark, stain. And as if this were not enough, the wet eyes rolled back slightly, and her lean body gave way, toppling down. Reflexively the Dúnadan stepped in, and before she could collapse more than a foot towards the ground, had caught Morwen in his arms and swept her up as though she weighed no more than a feather. They were not so far from the door, and the crowd there was thinner, but still as Kamion strode towards it, a few concerned heads turned. He warded them off with a disarming smile; clearly the lady had either become ill, or had a little too much to drink, or succumbed to some sort of vapor; nothing to worry about as far as any casual onlooker were concerned, and none that he saw watching would be likely to recognize either of them. He did turn his head, once trying to catch Narcano's eye- there would be no going back there now to make his excuses, and once again he would have to apologize to mistress Tindumhiell. But, there were more important matters at hand. Kamion slipped silently out of the Seven Stars, into the cool night air and the wooded garden of the tavern. It was some distance from here to the Sixth Circle, but that was where the Garrison, the Houses of Healing, and the Headquarters could be found- all of which, he thought, would be needed now.


    ((continues here))
    Last edited by Moriel; 03/Mar/2013 at 02:25 AM.

  35. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #135
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Pride and concern mixed as Thűllir watched the light of recognition dawn in Faramir’s eyes when he looked at Kaylin before returning their greetings with words about meeting in a civilized environment rather than the battlefield. A slight frown crossed his brow for an instant before he got control of his expression and smoothed it back into a smile. The battlefield comment was most definitely not aimed at him, so Faramir must mean Kaylin. Thűllir mentally kicked himself for worrying about the past, but Kaylin had given him the impression that she had not met the Captain, and yet she had been close enough and distinguished herself enough that he recognized her and mentioned the battlefield…one did not normally take special note of others on a battlefield unless they performed some act of bravery, and while this caused some amount of pride on her behalf, Thűllir also felt a cold curl in his belly at how much danger she must have been subject to. It was past. She was a soldier…it was to be expected.

    All these thoughts and emotions quickly flickered through Thűllir as he gave a silent yet courteous slight bow to the lady Mellya who was seated with Faramir. She was quite pretty as Faramir had said and he did not recall meeting her before, but he was too distracted by his internal concerns about Kaylin to be as courteous as he would normally be under such circumstances. Thűllir distantly heard the Captain’s question, and although he was momentarily a little too dazed by the difference between his fruitless internal questions and the comment, eventually he formed an answer. This time his smile was a bit more genuine as he replied, “Yes Sir, I have been enjoying the ball immensely this evening. I only hope others have had near as much joy from this occasion. If the continuing crowd is any indication I believe this to have been an outstanding investment into the life of the city…” His voice trailed off at that, and he lifted his right hand to cover Kaylin’s on his arm as he turned his head to look at her. The smile lingered on his lips, but his eyes were filled with a mixture of concern, questions, and affection. He did mean his words, even if the reason for them occasionally tied him in knots.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  36. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #136


    It would probably be more proper to wait for Thűllir to reply first, since he had made the introduction. She missed the play-by-play on his face – if it had been visible at all – because her eyes were on the two people in front of them, but she didn’t miss his words, and looked at him when he put his hand over hers and spoke of how enjoyable he was finding the ball. For a moment, her eyes lit up when they met his, and then she quickly redirected her gaze to avoid getting sucked in. “Aye, Captain,” she said to Faramir’s first words with a nod. “A battlefield isn’t exactly the best place to exchange names and pleasantries.” She looked to the lady again and pulled out some socializing speak. “Mellya – a beautiful name. It suits you,” she added in a genuine and friendly tone of voice.

    In her own response to Faramir’s question of whether they were enjoying the ball so far, a grin broke through on her face as she thought of how to answer, and inevitably thought about the evening she’d been having. She couldn’t help it. An amused sparkle lit up her eyes as she turned her head to the side to look at Thűllir again whilst saying: “Hmm. As for myself, I definitely can’t deny the evening has been… exceptional.” Her gaze returned to Faramir. “And I happen to agree. Events that light up people’s lives shouldn’t be shoved aside during more difficult times. To the contrary – it is in such times that people need it the most, to remember what is important and what they are trying to protect.” Kaylin paused and thought about what the Steward’s take on it might be after hearing Faramir’s words. After a moment she dared to offer a careful, soft-spoken response. “You would know the Steward best, sir. However, one could only hope he might surprise you, should the idea be brought to him by the right person?” She waved her words away herself just a second later. “Then again, I know very little of the minds of noblemen, and even less about that of the Steward. It is in any case good to remember that there needn’t be organised events for people to enjoy themselves – if they want to make time for it, they can always make their own fun.” Now that, she knew a thing or two about.

    Kaylin hesitated slightly as she looked around, trying to get an estimate of how much the evening had progressed. Meanwhile, Thűllir’s hand on hers was distracting her from thinking too clearly. What had she been planning for tomorrow? It all seemed only vaguely important at the moment. However, she was getting antsy about the whole situation on some level. The socializing was a far throw away from the serious talk she had promised the Ranger earlier, and even though she partly wanted to postpone it, she knew the time would get there at some point since she made a point of it to make good on her promises. The young woman went back and forth in her mind. On the one hand, she liked being straightforward, and right now her presence at the ball was keeping her from being just that. And knowing she would have to wait to be straightforward was getting tiring. On the other hand, she knew that this serious conversation with Thűllir would not be easy, and putting it off for a little while meant the delay of likely inner turmoil and wonderful yet anxious knots in her stomach. Her right hand slightly tightened around his arm before releasing the pressure again. Undecisive. So unlike her.
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  37. Windowcel Alarion's Avatar
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    #137
    NPC Mellya
    The dance ended and Mellya thanked her partner, nodding quietly and looking around to realize how many eyes had truly been on them. How had she been so fortunate as to catch his attention for the first dance? Ah, yes, she had been alone, nursing her second glass of wine and having a riveting conversation with the serving man. That screamed desperate for company like nothing else. “I hope we will have another opportunity to talk,” she answered him as she retrieved her own glass. He fell silent and so did she, sipping the red wine slowly and thinking of what she should say to Sergeant Pele when she approached her. For the time being, she stayed near Faramir, who seemed content to watch the dancers and survey the crowd.

    She was unsurprised when Captain Faramir was approached by some of the guests (Thűllir and Kaylin); she was sure that he knew most of the Rangers, at the very least, if not most of the city. She was somewhat surprised when she was included in the conversation, and smiled gratefully at Lady Kaylin as Faramir introduced them. “It is good to meet you both,” she said. Kaylin appeared genuinely friendly, while Thűllir simply seemed distracted. She felt rather out of her depth with all of them since they seemed to be previously acquainted, but she could appreciate their comments about the pleasantness of the ball. “I don’t know, my lady,” she said, “perhaps it takes a formal event like this every once in a while to remind people caught up in their cares that fun may be as vital as work.” She shrugged, “It has done so for me, at least. But then, I haven’t the same cares that many others do.” Once she had, but no longer… still, it was hard to shake a lifetime’s habit of deference and silent toil.
    -
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    ~ Dryhtguma of the Westmark ~
    si vales, valeo


  38. Isolde Alarion's Avatar
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    #138
    Mourgan Alarion 15
    & Andarion 15

    Before Mourgan could say anything he and Andarion watched in surprise as a older guy ..to them anyways...came and wrapped his arms around her waist and then kissed her cheek after speaking to her. Mourgan glanced at Andarion who shrugged lightly. Mourgan looked back to the ..couple..as the guy asked who they were. Mourgan...he then motioned to his friend...he's Andarion. They were both puzzled by the encounter but hearing the guy (Eamon) suggest they should ask her to dance but he wasn't sure if he was joking with them or what.

    Andarion nudged him on the arm. Go ahead...ask her. He knew Mourgan would kick himself later if he didn't at least try. Mourgan looked back at her..glancing at the guy holding her then back to her. Um..Can..can I have this dance m'lady. He was really hoping there wasn't going to be a punch headed his way from the guy (Eamon).

  39. Pele Alarion's Avatar
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    #139
    Faramir

    "It is good to know that you all have been enjoying the ball, if that is so then this is a good investment indeed," Faramir said in response to the comments his companions of conversation had made about this event. "I certainly don't doubt that the people are able to have their own fun, yet it would most likely be an ordinary kind of fun, not requiring dressing up and high manners." Not that he minded ordinary fun - after all he also was prone to it, whenever the time and surroundings allowed. A grin touched his lips for the briefest of moments, as he remembered a few of such times, but he did not speak of it, since he deemed the timing was not right. Perhaps a story time around the fire would be better fitted to sharing such memories. Besides, he did not want to talk on and on, turning his listeners into captives forced to stay and listen.

    Therefore Faramir only shrugged lightly and said, "Perhaps I should not keep you from further enjoyment of the evening, while it still lasts." Merry sparks in his grey eyes showed both a bit of a tease for the couple before him, but he restrained the silly remark that wanted to escape him. "But if you would like to continue discussing the topic of mandatory fun, we might find another time for it," he added with a laugh, as he sat down again.

    Then he looked at Mellya and said lightly, "Lady Mellya, will you still keep me company or will you go and meet others?" It was not that Faramir didn't like conversing with people, but he also didn't want to attract too much attention. Reaching over for a bowl of fruit, he offered it to Mellya. "Can I offer you some fruit, at least, before we part ways?"
    I would see the White Tree in flower again in the courts of the kings,
    and the Silver Crown return, and Minas Tirith in peace...

  40. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #140


    Both Mellya and Faramir expressed that events such as tonight might still offer people something more, and considering their words, Kaylin nodded slowly in thoughtful agreement. "I believe I see what you mean," she admitted without any embarrassment or difficulty. "Sometimes people need a little push." A smile lit up her face and wiped the thoughtful expression from her eyes. "I still have much to learn about putting myself in other people's shoes, I'm afraid." She knew that was something she sometimes forgot to do when forming an opinion about something, and she wasn't shy about owning up to that fact. Faramir's comment about the difference between something like tonight's ball and ordinary fun also made sense. "It's a good thing to have different kinds of fun, yes... Though too much dressing up and high manners would be somewhat tiring for me," she spoke honestly. "I'm glad that only rare occasions require it of me. Besides, a lot of what is special about events such as these is that they are not held too often." Realising she was getting a bit off track, she abruptly decided to stop herself there. No use for silly blabbing.

    Besides, it seemed like Faramir didn't want to keep them from the rest of the evening - whatever the rest might still be. The Captain's words decided her dilemma for her, since they urged Thűllir and herself to move on, and as such they both made her nervous with anticipation but also gave her the shove she needed to cross that bridge of undecisiveness. And once the decision was made, at least some part of her mind settled and gave her the stability she needed. With a mental tug, she started to prepare to pull up a wall of confidence around her, thinking that might help. The notion she had to gather her confidence at all was unsettling, since she usually had no shortage of it, but she knew it would be best to ignore that side-thought lest it ruined her efforts. With a nod to Faramir and a smile to Mellya, she made use of Faramir's words to excuse them from their company. "Another time perhaps, then. Please enjoy the rest of your evening..." She stole a glance at Thűllir, and hid a grin. "As I'm sure we will."

    She gave a hint of pressure to his arm to indicate this would be the time to break away - if he still needed such indication, but better one too many than one too few, she supposed - and then waited patiently for the Ranger to express his own goodbyes to Faramir and Mellya. Meanwhile, Kaylin pondered on exactly how to proceed once they would walk away from Mellya and Faramir, her head dipping down a little as she thought it over. A strange thing to ponder on, perhaps, but the situation called for it. Should she suggest they leave now, or would he want to stay longer? She lifted her head up again after a moment. She shouldn't try to put it off any longer; the decision had been made already, and overturning it would only make it that much harder to reach it a second time. That thought made her mentally roll her eyes at herself. This man would turn her into a second-guessing scatterbrain if she wasn't careful. She would just have to power through the danger without overthinking it, and try not to let her nerves get the best of her.
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  41. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #141
    Thűllir Bregedŷr
    Exceptional…the word Kaylin used to describe the evening repeated itself in Thűllir’s mind again as he took in her smile and twinkling eyes, and then dragged his own gaze back to their companions. Had she really just described it that way? When her hand tightened briefly on his arm his smile widened slightly. Quite pleased with her words, he tried to tuck away his previous worries more thoroughly, and nodded in acknowledgement when both Faramir and the lady Mellya replied. He didn’t have anything to really add on the topic of fun, although he admitted to himself that this occasion had been rather life-changing and fun for him as well. Not something he would have undertaken without a challenge from his cousin.

    Although he felt like he should be contributing to the conversation rather than just standing there in silent bemusement, he still had not thought of a thing to add by the time Faramir gave them polite leave to go. Catching the amused look in his Captain’s eye, Thűllir knew that he was likely in for some teasing when he got back to Ithilien. Granted, he had dished plenty of teasing out to the other Rangers when they got themselves involved, so he would take it in his turn. He bit the inside of his lip briefly as Kaylin gave her farewells, as he realized he had never thought to the day he would be happy to bear the brunt of the teasing over a lady. His nerves jumped when she pressured his arm slightly to indicate she was ready to leave, and he finally broke his silence once more despite feeling a bit awkward for not speaking much during their meeting. “It was indeed pleasant to meet you M’lady Mellya, and I wish you a good evening. Until next time Sir. Good evening!” He gave a nod to each of them in turn as he spoke, and then stepped away, drawing Kaylin with him a few steps.

    Thűllir was suddenly not quite certain what to do. He was a bit tired of the crowd, but he also knew it afforded him the excuse to continue being in Kaylin’s presence as she had not forsaken his company for that of any other thus far, but being alone might be another question entirely. The lingering promise of having a “serious” talk “later” gave him some reassurance, but he didn’t know if she meant this evening or another time entirely. Seeing the Captain had also reminded him that he would be going back to Ithilien again later next week, and the prospect was suddenly not as pleasing as it normally was. He paused briefly to look down at her in thought, and then started them walking again in a slow and almost meandering fashion towards the other end of the hall. Deciding to just say a little bit of what was on his mind, he spoke quietly. “Well Kaylin…I must admit I am ready to leave this place, but do not want this evening to end or to quit your side. It has been a most enchanting experience. Would you…” Here he paused a beat trying to find the right words. “…be interested in a stroll in the gardens or allow me the honor of escorting you home if you are ready to leave? I admit I could dance the night away with you as with no other, but it is getting late. Shall we collect our cloaks or continue our stroll to meet others?” He looked back at her again in question, unconsciously running his thumb over hers where their hands still rested on his arm. His eyes were serious once more, and showed the deep blue gray of smoke on the water as he waited for her reply with the slightest touch of anxiety mixed with anticipation.
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  42. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #142


    When they stepped away from Mellya and Faramir, Kaylin's eyes scanned the part of the room she could take into view without turning her head noticeably to one side or the other. When she felt Thűllir stop, her attention was drawn to him and she looked at him questioningly, just in time to catch that thoughtful look in his eyes. It gave her pause, but then they started off once more - albeit very slowly. Kaylin usually hated any kind of slow walking or casual strolling, but it didn't seem so out of place this time. Perhaps because she didn't want to hasten the evening to an end herself. As Thűllir spoke to her, she almost had to lean in a little to hear him better. Almost. All she ended up doing was look at him as the words came out of his mouth. He was looking forwards, at 'the path' ahead of them, navigating through any obstacles as and if they presented themselves. Watching him and listening to him, she narrowed her eyes pensively at his first few words, but then a smile broke through pretty quickly as he mentioned not wanting to end the evening or to leave her side. Calling the evening an enchanting experience only fuelled her smile as well as the lights in her eyes. At this point, she turned her eyes away, also looking ahead of them, and tried not to be too obvious about her contentment at his words, though she was aware that would be rather difficult seeing as how she couldn't wipe her face clean of that smile.

    His suggestion of visiting the gardens or walking her home seemed to require some thought considering the moment he took before continuing his sentence. Was he worrying, Kaylin wondered, whether his words would be construed as if he wanted to just go home and away from everyone, including her? She already knew that wasn't true because of his earlier words. And he had no reason to lie to her. In the end, Thűllir gave her almost every possible option. Talking to more people, sticking around, talking a walk outside, leaving altogether and heading home... Though all of his options still included his company. Kaylin let out an amused "Hmm.." at that thought, and then hurried to look at the ranger as if to explain she wasn't making fun of him. The look in his eyes threw her off a bit as she made eye contact, and for a moment she said nothing, but simply watched in silence. After a brief while, a soft smile came to her lips. "Allow you to escort me home?" she asked quietly, picking out one of the things he said. "You do realize the barracks are off quite a ways from here? Where are you staying during your time in the City? Because it would hardly make sense for you to walk all the way from the Second Circle to the Sixth Circle and then possibly go back to a lower circle again. If you're staying at that Inn I stayed at when I first got here, that would even mean you'd be going all the way up to the Sixth Circle and then all the way down to this circle again. Hardly logical, that."

    Analyzing his facial expression, the look in his eyes, adding the events of the evening, and combining it all with her own desire not to shun his company yet, she sighed lightly and thoughtfully. "But if you are going to insist on walking me home despite me pointing that out, I suppose I could allow it," she added with a half-smile, after which she almost buckled under his gaze and looked away. At the last moment, she did not, and to hide and bury any anxiety that might show or that she might have, she flexed her right hand index finger and thumb and said: "I might need my hand then to put on my cloak, though.. I'm sure you know that just as well as I do, but you seem to have taken a liking to my hand there."
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  43. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #143
    Thűllir Bregedŷr

    Thűllir had somewhat noticed that Kaylin was watching him while he spoke, although he had kept his eyes mostly on the path ahead as he guided them around tables and other Ball patrons. Her smile at his initial words gave him a hope that she would at least continue with him for a while longer. When he looked back at her after his question she was looking ahead with apparent amusement at the proposition, but quickly looked back over to him and then held his gaze with a still watchfulness in her expression. They slowly drifted to a stop since neither of them was looking where they were going. He briefly wondered what she was thinking through as she looked into his eyes, but apparently it was his request to escort her, as she smiled softly and addressed it.

    His anxiety picked up a little, even though he was glad she also seemed inclined to leave, as she honed in on one of the details that he had thought she might catch on to. As self-sufficient as she was he knew she was likely to protest part of it at least. The Barracks on the sixth level was a good distance past where the Wayfarer’s was located on the second. As long as she didn’t insist on escorting him to his Inn and then going on alone he thought he could talk her around. He lightly bit the inside of his lip to keep himself from speaking as she questioned his logic, but she seemed intent on gauging his sincerity as she watched him for a moment before speaking again. Thűllir sighed a little internally in relief when she relented and said she would allow his escort, and a matching half-smile lightened the lines of his face. Good. When she followed up with a light flex of her fingers without withdrawing her hand, he let his gaze drop down to their hands as her last words registered.

    A quiet but broad smile worked its way across Thűllir’s face as he looked at her hand and then back up to her face. He merely smiled at her a moment before speaking. “Aye Kaylin, I suppose I have taken a liking to your hand.” He almost considered leaving it at that rather cryptic remark, but then spoke again as he nudged them into motion toward the cloak attendant standing by the impressive display of winter cloaks and other wraps that patrons had left upon arrival. “I will insist on walking you the whole way if you will allow it, for although I know you are quite capable of defending yourself against ruffians I would rather they not even be tempted to accost you.” His glance swept down over her gown briefly and back to her face to emphasis his point. “They would only see the vision I do even with a cloak, and not recognize you for the warrior you are. Besides which, even if it may not be at all logical, I find I am quite willing to walk as far and as long with you as I may M’lady.”

    As they reached the cloak attendant he fell silent and turned to the servant to indicate he should collect their cloaks. He was glad she had not made further issue of it thus far. He wasn’t quite prepared to admit that he would have likely followed her the whole way anyway just in case if she had refused his actual presence. Any other night perhaps not, but this night he needed her safe his heart whispered. Accepting their cloaks from the attendant with a nod of thanks, he finally released her hand from his arm. Tossing his own cloak temporarily over his shoulder, Thűllir turned and gave Kaylin’s a swirl as he swept it around behind and then over her shoulders for her. He drew in a halting breath as they came face to face again and he met her gaze, but then he stepped away from temptation and let her fasten her own cloak as he busied himself with quickly donning and pinning his own Ranger green cloak.
    Offering his arm once more, Thűllir flashed her a slight smile. It had been an amazing evening at the Tavern of the Seven Stars, but now it was time to go and the evening was not yet over. “Shall we M’lady Kaylin?” Once she was ready to meet the cold and accepted his arm, they moved at a much brisker step toward the heavy oak doors that an attendant swung open for them. The night revealed was still brisk and partially moonlit with a light snowfall that traced the cobblestones with white. It was with lightness to his step and wonder in his heart that Thűllir left the Midwinter Ball with Kaylin on his arm.
    Last edited by Karis Ziranphel; 15/Mar/2013 at 08:57 AM. Reason: Forgot I had moved the Wayfarers to second from fourth
    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  44. Arnyn Dealedwen's Avatar
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    #144


    His reply and his smile to her comment about her hand made her eyes sparkle amusedly. His talk of preferring that ruffians wouldn’t even think of bothering her made her roll her eyes a little. It mattered not if they did – or more correctly, if they tried. The dress would make it harder, though, especially if she didn’t want to ruin it. Kaylin sighed mentally as she thought it over, but decided not to say anything of the thought process. Even though his next sentence about not recognizing her as the warrior she was made not saying anything more difficult. Anyone who would be so low to take prey on a defenseless looking individual would deserve a good beating, that was her opinion… And if any such person or a few such people would single her out, they would get it. More than a bother to her, she would be providing a service to the city. That made her grin, and she shook her head to focus on Thűllir’s words again.

    “Willing to walk as far and as long with me as you may?” she repeated, her eyebrows raised. “You know, such a statement could have gotten you into a load of trouble with some women who would put you to the test…” Kaylin had to hold back a chuckle, considering she would be much more inclined to put people to the test than most other women she was acquainted with. On the way to the exit and the attendant who handled everyone’s coats, cloaks, wraps and the like, she aimed a quick wave at Elesil, Arinelle, Turin and Hallas, and another towards the table Pele and Maldir were sitting at, trying to get eye contact with Pele to at least give her a quick smile.

    She was just about to get her own cloak when Thűllir beat her to it, so Kaylin just ended up nodding to indicate the attendant had produced the right one. Before she had the chance to reach out with her hand to wordlessly ask him to give it to her, Thűllir swirled it around her. She dimly remembered something her father had insisted on once after she had protested him doing the same for her mother. She hadn't gotten why it was acceptable and in some cases expected of men to do it for women, but not for women to do it for men. She’d been told that was just the way it went, and she should shut up about it. Later, her mother had explained it was more something men needed to do sometimes for themselves rather than for the women. That had given Kaylin some pause, even though she hadn’t quite understood. Now, she thought perhaps she had a little better idea of what her mother had been talking about. “Thanks,” she mumbled quietly and with a slight frown as she thought it over when they eyes met. She was grateful, though, when he stepped away to don and pin his own cloak. With a bit more fumbling than usually, she fixed her own cloak, parted her hair along the back of her head, and flipped half of it forward over her right shoulder, and the other half forward over her left shoulder, over the cloak and away from the hood.

    Leaving with him was bringing her some unease, since all this was uncharted territory. She wasn’t thinking about what anyone else might think of her, or of them (they could think whatever they wanted, it was of no concern to her); her unease was entirely due to the new situation. With a slightly concerned glint in her eyes, she accepted his offered arm and they walked to the oaken doors.
    Arnyn Axinecelume ~ Always Hyandaner


  45. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
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    #145
    The trumpeter rose at the conductor's signal and blew a light fanfare on his horn.
    Clearing his throat politely, the conductor announced. "This will be our last dance of the evening as we wrap up festivities, so if you have not yet trod the dance floor with your beloved this is your opportunity. We thank you all for coming, and bid you a good night!" Turning back to the orchestra, he lifted his baton and counted out the beat of the last tune briefly before starting with a flourish.


    The Ball thread will be closed at the end of the week, to be replaced by one of Gondor's other regular pubs. If you have a storyline that you want to wrap up this is your chance. Thank you all for making this a very fun thread for so long!
    ~ Karis Ziranphel, pubmistress

    Karis Ziranphel, Captain of Gondor Thűllir Bregedŷr of Ithilien
    Tirlyn Ithilphel of the Evendim hills

  46. Karis Ziranphel's Avatar
    Queen Elsa
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    #146
    The Midwinter Ball is now officially closed!

    A new pub will be opening shortly. Thank you to all who came and made the ball a success.


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