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Ella
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on: December 01, 2013 02:31
Scarlett noticed how the girl who lost her father analyzed her dress. Maybe she always wanted to have one of those. However, the blond one, though she looked at it, she didn’t seem she liked that kind of clothes.

The girl continued to speak and made her a question. No, of course she was not looking at something; she never had the chance to go in a market. And observing at the situation, she felt revolted. How can the soldiers beat on ladies and accusing them for stealing? She thought. She hated to lie, since she found compassion for those girls, yet she had to. “It was that kind of position, yet I am truly afraid of them.”

She glanced at her for a while, thinking of a good plan to be unnoticed.

“Raegan, do you want to try one of my dresses?” She asked kindly with a smile. Actually, it was a good idea. She cool wear beautiful clothes for a day, she could feel pretty, while the people and the soldiers wouldn’t bother them. “You can go unnoticed to find your father.”

After a small pause, she looked at Freya. Even if she didn’t like dresses, she could hand her a cloak. She searched in her bag putting out a long deep blue dress, which she gave to Raegan, and one discreet leaf green cloak to the other girl.

“You can use this one, too, Freya.” She smiled to the two of them. “Please, accept it. It isn’t charity. I will be waiting outside until you get ready.”

She left the room and went to the entry of the inn. She thought of Khaloch again. She really wanted to find him, yet, she wasn’t quite sure why. It wasn’t only the desire to thank him, neither the fascination for other places stories. However, she would find out the reason once she met him again.
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wolfbladequeen
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on: December 02, 2013 12:26
Scar was kind, giving a pretty dress to Raegan, who wore a shapeless item that would be noticed for its simplicity and unloveliness.

Scar offered Fay a cloak. It was beautiful in a different kind of way, unnoticeable, but still wonderful. The colour of the forest. The sort of raiment that had stories woven into it. Stories of adventure, of danger, of wondrous things not yet seen by anyone.
Fay accept the cloak with a smile, though she did not know how to fasten it.
"Could... you help me to fasten the cloak?" She asked Scar, but she was already leaving the room.

"It isn't charity."
What did she mean by that? If not a gift, what was it? If she did not give out of kindness, what drove her to bestow the clothes upon them?
"I will be waiting outside until you get ready."
Did she expect Fay to come with them? But then again, she had offered to help Raegan, so presumably she was now a part of this. The agreement bound her like a contract.
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
findemaxam48
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on: December 02, 2013 04:46
Raegan nodded in agreement as Scar said, “It was that kind of position, yet I am truly afraid of them.” It seemed that everyone around now feared the soldiers, but Scar, in her aloofness, brought a new kind of fear to Raegan. She thought Scar a fine lady, and soldiers never chased after fine ladies.


After a few moments of contemplation, Scar said to her, “Raegan, do you want to try one of my dresses? You can go unnoticed to find your father.”



Raegan leaped up and nearly shrieked with glee. But, she tried to hide her excitement, scared that Scar would change her mind once she saw how eager Raegan was. She solemnly took the long blue dress that Scar offered. Scar handed to Freya a leaf green cloak and told them both to accept her gifts because they "weren't charity." She then left the room, leaving them to get dressed.

"Could... you help me to fasten the cloak?" Freya asked just after Scar left.

Raegan tugged the dress on over her head. The thick fabric flowed over her like a river, or more like an ocean, for it was a deep saphhire color. The ends of the gown lightly scraped the floor, but since Scar's dress had done that, too, raegan assumed that was how it should be. Slowly, she ran her hand down the bodice of the dress. Tiny golden flowers were embroidered at the neckline and again at the waistline, but otherwise, it was just sleek velvet. velvet. A word Raegan had only heard spoken between wealthy shoppers and merchants. She lifted up he skirt and rubbed the hem against her cheek.

Freya seemed to be lost as she held the garment in her hands. Since she had asked for help, Raegan assumed that she didn't know how to put it on. "Here," She said as she threw it across her friends shoulders. With fingers that moved like lightning, she tied the stays and let the ends drop.

Together, she and Freya walked through into the inn's enrty. Scar stood there, so Raegan went over to her and tapped her shoulder. Scar jumped, but one she saw it was them, she relaxed.

"Thank you for the dress," Raegan said, fingering the ends of her dried and matted hair. "Maybe it will help me find father. Though, I don't think ghosts have preference to waht clothes you are wearing."
We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 04, 2013 12:07
"I don't think ghosts have preference to what clothes you are wearing."
Fay smiled. No, probably not. Raegan had very nimble fingers, to help her tie the cloak so deftly. Fay could never do anything like needlework because her fingers were so clumsy.

The dress suited Raegan, though Fay would have preferred to wear the shapeless dress she had worn before. The dress was fancy and flowing, and represented the rich and important, and everything that Fay was not and did not wish to be.

"We should go. I will be wanted at work in a few hours."
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
Ella
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on: December 04, 2013 05:27
The rain had stop definitely though the air was getting warm and a wild wind was blowing. There were few people on the street, what made Scarlett more confident about her escape. She was staring the sun rays that tried to shine through grey sky. It was surely odd in that time of the year.
Suddenly, someone tapped her shoulder, making her jump. A million images of the possibilities of getting caught passed in her mind in a second. However, she calmed down when she saw it was Raegan. She looked how beautifully she looked in her deep blue dress. She seemed like an influent lady from Minas Tirith. She smiled.

“You look truly beautiful in that dress.” She said surprised. “It will help you so the soldiers who might appear in our way don’t bother you.”

Freya, who was with her, was wearing her cloak. She looked those brave maidens of old who was ready for a big and important adventure and the leaf green really exceled her blonde hair. She smiled to her.

“I truly hope you can have utility in those clothes I gave you.” Then, she stopped talking as Freya told she was in a hurry. “We should go, then. Let us find your father, miss.” She added in her thoughts “And I hope I can find him.”

Scarlett began walking through the shadows, trying to get unnoticed, always with the hood on. She hopped the other two would follow her. She walked for about one hour until she crossed a hidden bar with a wood signboard. There was written East Quay Inn. She smiled and got in. Looking around she saw a tavern. There were few people around and no soldiers. And there he sat, in a table drinking a cup of hot black tea. Scar moved in his direction.

“Pardon me sir, but may I sit here?” She asked with a smirk.
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Arveleg
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on: December 04, 2013 08:53
(The timeline of this post takes place concurrent with your previous posts and goes to shortly after Ella/Lady Scarlett’s last post)

Good tea was always invigorating. It helped take the edge off the fogginess of sleep. He considered the Lady Scarlett he had met and hopefully helped at the tavern that afternoon. He hoped she was able to get away and not be caught. It was right then he thought he saw her as he took a second look at a woman talking to a serving maid. Her clothes were that of a ship’s hand, but her hair was similar, and the eyes were muted green. Looked very much like Lady Scarlett. She walked out the door and he didn't linger on the thought too much, instead turning his attention to a game that was starting on a nearby table. Add ship hands overnighting and some dice, and things could always get exciting. Khaloch only watched the game though. He wasn't really in the mood to play. But seeing one of the vendors from the market step up, Khaloch pulled some coin from his pocket. He would play a round.

It worked better than he expected. Not only did he not lose any coin, but he gained a favour from the tanner. He would have to see him early the next day to get fitted for new boots. With one thing taken care of, he walked out the door as the sun dropped over the horizon.

Stepping outside the Inn, Khaloch looked at the sky. The rains had long passed, but the thunder could still be heard far off to the north. The air, though cooler, was thick with heaviness when the gusts of wind died down. The bugs were thick there by the river, so the fading wind helped keep them away. Khaloch thought about walking back to the bridge. Instead he looked up at it and could see three soldiers walking over from the west side. One of them stopped and leaned on the stone wall on the side of the bridge. The Anduin flowed lazily through the city, with swirls in its current. It seemed a bit faster than it was earlier, being swollen some by the storm that was now was pressed against the great Misty Mountains to the north.

Khaloch pondered his first day in Gondor, the Great Kingdom of the West which he had spent his young adult life fighting for in the far reaches of Harad and Rhun. He thought about the girl at the well and the girl at the bakers, and how it seemed they had so little in such a great land, where the people who had much more, like the baker and the tavern proprietor who were mean and hard on those with little. Khaloch was not much older than they, if at all when he was impressed into the military service. Having been on the streets, he swore he would never look down on those with little.

The soldier on the bridge had flicked a small stone off the edge, and in the quiet, Khaloch heard it hit water. The rings were quickly swept away under the bridge, and the soldier looked north upriver. Khaloch watched him from the front of the Inn as he again thought of Lady Scarlett. She was a woman of means. Well-to-do with her fine dress and cloak. She was eager to know about places other than Gondor too. He had hoped to be able to show his maps to her and see if she knew of any of the places that were shown. He looked back up at the bridge, and he could make out in the darkness the helm of the soldier was the same as the one the commander wore at the tavern earlier that day. If they’re still around, then they had not found who they were looking for yet. Lady Scarlett may yet still be free.

"Hey-you."

… a voice said as two soldiers approached, their boots splashing in the remaining puddles in the muddy street. Khaloch right away made them to be the other two elite soldiers from the tavern. He failed to notice they did not stop on the bridge with the commander. Khaloch stepped off the inn porch into the street to face them as they approached.

"Yeah, you."

They were now face-to-face. Khaloch held the eyes of the taller one, ignoring the other. The taller soldier said,

"You look familiar."

"I should, being we met earlier at a tavern. You interrupted my buying a beer."

Khaloch said in reply. The other soldier said,

[i]"It's that mercenary rat…"


The tall soldier signalled him to be quiet with his hand and said,

"He served in the Ninth. Likely seen more battle than you and me combined.... or most of us. He is a citizen so we'll show him respect."

Khaloch looked briefly at the other soldier before returning his gaze on the tall soldier. He didn't like these guys. He should, but he didn't. The tall soldier then said,

"I have a question and maybe you could help."

Khaloch didn't speak but nodded he was willing to listen and maybe answer. The soldier went on,

"We're looking for someone, a young lady. Maybe you've seen her?"

'I've seen several young ladies today. I have even talked to a few in passing."

Khaloch replied, not breaking his gaze from the soldier.

[i]"Well, you'd know if you have seen this young lady. She has the fairest green eyes and long auburn hair which she usually keeps braided. I thought I saw her at that tavern when I tried to walk through the crowd, but I wasn't sure. Did you see her?"


Khaloch looked down, thinking. The tall soldier had nice boots. He wanted a pair like those. He would have to get some made tomorrow. He looked back up in the soldier's eyes and said,

"No, don’t remember seeing anyone like that there. Why do you seek this woman?"

After a long pause, the soldier nodded and said,

"Someone in Minas Tirith that she is very dear to seeks her."

"Her husband?"

Khaloch asked, the soldier shook his head and said,

[i]"No, and it is business you don’t really need to know. But I'll tell you some, as you have been a fellow soldier.”


The mouthy one sighed at that while Khaloch said,

”It would be good to know why I would be looking out for her for you.”

”Indeed. This lady is Captain Seth of Minas Tirith's daughter. She was not in her chambers last night, and had not been seen since earlier that afternoon, so this morning we were ordered to search for her. Someone thought they saw a horse riding out hard toward Osgiliath late yesterday so we came here this morning, suspecting she was here. Since it’s getting dark and we have not found her, we'll have a search again in the morning. If you do see her, let us know. Any information would be well compensated We are camped outside the city gate."

They turned and started to walk away. Khaloch looked up at the bridge and saw the commander had watched the whole exchange. He then considered the reward for finding the captains daughter. Khaloch let them get several steps down the road when he said,

"I said I didn't see her at the tavern this afternoon..."

The two soldiers turned around in a step and were quickly back. The other soldier said,

"I figured a bag of money would help you remember her. I was sure you had seen her."

"Like I said, I didn't see her at the tavern."


Khaloch snapped back. The tall soldier then asked,

"So, you did see her, just not at that tavern?"

Khaloch smiled and said,

"Here you are in the lower east Osgiliath, looking for the Captain's daughter, a fair maiden wearing fine clothes and holding herself in a dignified demeanour? How much do they pay you guys?”

“Talk now, for though you’re a former soldier and a current citizen of Gondor, my patience has run thin.”


The tall soldier snapped. Khaloch raised his hand and eased him before starting to tell them all he knew.

”Yes, I have seen a woman such as you described, with green eyes and long auburn hair and, except she had two braids. She was looking a bit rough, dressed more like a man working the docks. She was heading out tonight on the river trader bound for Pelargir."

“You sure???"


the tall soldier asked surprised. Khaloch said,

Yes. I met her here at this inn after the storm. She was full of questions about the south once she found out I was there recently. I told her about Pelargir, and her eyes lit up, and another guy, a ship’s mate, said they were setting out for Pelargir this night. I think they are leaving port right now."

Khaloch pointed over toward the river where a boat was right then setting out on the high current of the rain swollen river. They were hoping to make good time downstream. The soldiers both looked and seemed confused as to what to do. The tall soldier looked up at the commander on the bridge and finally said to the other soldier,

"You get back to the commander with this news. Have our fastest rider go to Minas Tirith. He may get there in time and the boat can be stopped and searched. Otherwise, it will be a long ride to Pelargir!"

The commander waved his arm and from the darkness four more soldiers came running across the bridge to the east side. The mouthy one ran the other way to pass the message. The four soldiers approached and together with the tall soldier the headed north up the east side of the river toward the docklands and disappeared into the darkness. They were undoubtedly going to ask questions of the port-master. Khaloch hoped Lady Scarlett was somewhere safe, and maybe the search for her would for a time look elsewhere since he led the soldiers to believe she had caught the boat south. He couldn’t now go looking for her as surely he would be watched. So Khaloch went back into the inns tavern and sat back down. Finding a fresh pot of hot tea, he pours some in his cup and he sipped it. He stared into its steaming surface when the candle on his table flickered slightly. A voice, sounding fair and recently familiar said,

“Pardon me sir, but may I sit here?”

Khaloch looked up and immediately stood, setting his cup down abruptly.

”Lady Scarlett! A much unlooked for surprise! Yes, it would be my honour to have you sit and share my tea if you wish!

Khaloch stepped around behind her and pulled the chair out for her to sit. Once she was settled, he returned to his chair and had another cup brought to the table.

Khaloch looked at Lady Scarlett’s face, and she was seemingly smiling and was unconcerned. She must be good at slipping through shadows, for those elite soldiers were not blind. He admired her eyes and as he considered what to tell her, he said,

”It is a fair night for me to have you find me. We have much to talk about. I have considered my trail, and it will lead to Rohan then north to Tharbad, then on to Bree, and from there to the city of Annuminas. It will be a long road, and there is much to do before then.”

Why he told her this he wasn’t sure. Considering the soldiers from Minas Tirith were not far away in the docklands, he expected them to walk in the door of the inn at any time. Thoughts in his head were to sit there and allow them to find her and take her back to Minas Tirith. He may get a reward for keeping her there safe for them, and he could be off west and north without any trouble with the authorities. But he looked into her eyes that seemed to sparkle as she thought about what he said. So Khaloch said shortly after,

”Maybe you would be interested in leaving this city? I have some maps I would like to have you see if you are interested.”

She smiled as he watched the door to the tavern…
Eighth King of Arthedain - It was in battle that I come into this Kingship, and it will be in Battle when I leave it. There is no peace for the Realm of Arnor. Read the last stand of Arthedain in the Darkest of Days.
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 05, 2013 12:28
After Scar left, Fay looked at Raegan, smiled, gestured, and said, 'After you.'
Raegan exited, and so did Fay. She followed Scar to the tavern, but did not go in. She figured that Scar would wish some uninterrupted time with the man she had met before, and she would probably have only disrupted their conversation.

The windows of the tavern were grimy, and Fay could not see through them. She resigned herself to waiting until Scar came out or called them in.
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
Ella
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on: December 05, 2013 02:14
Khaloch stood up as he heard her, pulling a chair for her to sit. Once he sat again, he looked at her and spoke. Scarlett looked truly amazed by his description of the trail he would take. She noticed every detail of the conversation, from his voice tone, to his movements and his expression. However, there was something wrong and she didn’t know why. Actually, she felt somewhat stupid for going to look for him, knowing that he probably had talk to other soldiers. It was stronger than her. She needed to thank him properly.

“Khaloch, am I right?” She asked. “Before, I have to thank you.” She didn’t mention what it was about but she knew he would understand. With a shy smile, she took a sip of the tea.

She was ready to ask him lots of questions, yet she hadn’t the courage, neither had she known what to say. She was usually wary about people in general. However, since she ran from Minas Tirith, she was beginning to give much talk to everyone who caught her attention. That man, who sat right in front of her, was looking at her, sharing information she wanted to hear. There was something in him that made her uncomfortable, or maybe confused, and at the same time he made her smile and she felt truly amazed and somewhat safe. He spoke again about maps, catching her attention completely. When he asked her if she wanted to leave the city she nodded with a wide smile.

“I would truly appreciate if you showed me the maps. I seek other countries. I want to know the world out there. I do not want any more books or maps and study. Would you mind if I went with…”

She stopped talking when she noticed him looking at the door. It was opened. In those few seconds, a lot of possibilities passed again through her mind. She became really tense, frozen, and her smile faded. However, when she saw the ones who were entering it was only Freya along with Raegan. She made them signal to sit with them.

“Allow me to introduce my friends. This is Lady Freya and lady Raegan. This is Khaloch.”

She ordered more tea for them and glanced at him asking for help not to get caught. Then, she turned to Raegan.

“Did you find your father in your way here, miss? Do you know if he might be around?” She asked concerned about her. She wanted to help that girl, even if she didn’t know how.

Scar looked again at Khaloch in an expression of hurry. She was entrusting her freedom to one man she didn’t know and she was still trying to understand why she was doing it. However, he had helped her before and he knew other places and was planning to leave.
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findemaxam48
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on: December 06, 2013 04:35
Raegan's heart had been warmed when Scar had complemented the way the dress she had been given looked on her. "Thank you," she had said, and she had meant it with all of her heart. Ah, friends!

Now, she and Freya followed Scar into a new tavern, although Freya muttered slightly about being needed at work. Raegan now developed the thought that work, however exciting it seemed in retrospect, was a bore.

Scar sat down at a table with another occupant, the same man that she had been speaking with last night. Well Man. She and Freya hung back a bit, but then Well Man and Scar noticed them, and Scar waved them inward. Together, she and Freya took their seats, and Scar ordered them some tea. Then, she said, “Allow me to introduce my friends. This is Lady Freya and Lady Raegan. This is Khaloch.” Then she turned back to Well Man- Khaloch- and asked him for help, and not to get caught. Caught how?, Raegan wondered.

Scar then turned to her. “Did you find your father in your way here, miss? Do you know if he might be around?” She seemed genuinely concerned.

Raegan shook her head sadly. "I do not think we will find him here. This place is crowded. No ghosts will come here."


Someone came, and set two more teacups on the table. Freya picked one up, but when Raegan hesitated, Khaloch gestured for her to drink it, indicating it was for her. Raegan picked up the powder blue cup and then drank, the hot liquid filling her being. She shuddered. Never before had she had a drink of something so scorching. The water drawn from wells on the hottest of days didn't even compare.

Scar was once again looking at Khaloch. Raegan sighed, wanting her attention, so she drummed her fingers gently against the table. Scar and Khaloch both looked to ehr, and she said, "Scar? Now that you have found your friend, will we all be going home? Or staying here?"



We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
Eldarion
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on: December 06, 2013 06:31
A single chink of light, golden hued and filled with dust motes, spanned the length of Merenor's dingy room at the inn, signalling that the aforementioned pirate's day had begun. Already it was nigh on mid-day and he had been locked away in his chambers deep in slumber. It was a troubled and unsatisfying slumber; the sort that left you with those deep circles and a glazed over look. Neither suited him.

Rising from his bed he donned a proper pair of clean breeches, tucked his tunic beneath them, fastened with a wide brown belt around the middle and cast a cloak over his shoulders with a weather-stained hood to protect from what he knew to be an unforgiving sun. His leather boot clad feet carried him directly out of the inn without a word. A day of leisure awaited him as the merchant's stall was low on product and there was need to resupply before business could be resumed. A day free of responsibility. The possibility was there, but the motivation wasn't.

Merenor's day unfolded without incident. He spent much of it in leisure at the river, day-dreaming and making idle conversation with the occasional passerby. Ships were plentiful as ever. A steady stream of sailors and merchants and soldiers swelling the population of the city. Business to and from the sea was a comforting constant; the Anduin a conduit for activity. It was what antagonized Merenor into first seeking a life on the river. Every morning brought new promise, risk, and reward, all while one was embattled with the sea alongside his comrades. Surprise kept his senses sharp, unlike his river side sun bathing.

As the day wound to an end and the sun began to stain the sky gold and crimson, taverns began filling at the usual rate with empty bellies and parched throats. Merenor experienced both and was soon seated in a well-crafted wooden chair against a table of thick oak. His calloused hands felt unusually empty without the earthenware mug between them and as such he avoided the sensation properly. What were once chapped lips became hydrated and curled upwards in due time. He was social amongst his fellows, though exchanged few words. The man's amber hues intermittently found the doorway, surveying newcomers and noticing a very strange cough afflicting many of those who passed. It seemed to be nothing worth concern at the time...

"Merenor," a man had slurred amidst his evening drinking binge, surrounded by others in a similar situation. "It's good that you're back, mate. The Bay of Belfalas has taken too many good men and every time you get back I'm glad to see you haven't joined their ranks!"

"You are too kind, Cillen." Merenor couldn't resist a grin. His attention was diverted to the man beside Cillen, who, like Merenor, was not quite inebriated. "The profit from the last run was staggering. Goods being moved from Tolfalas to Harandor were particularly plentiful these past few months and what luck! I've yet to see such lucrative time spent in the Bay. You wouldn't believe the caches of fine blacksmith work being transported into South Gondor, and without so much as a single vessel to aid in it's safe transport. Easy pickings, Bartrand."

"You swine! If only I had joined up before my tenure in the military began. What a life it must be. But Osgiliath is not short on trouble and risks these days. The bustling port has been bringing in all types these days! Quite rowdy, at that! If it isn't the sailors it is the peasants! I tell you, I had to intervene in a brawl the other day over a few pieces of bread and a silver coin! Sad times for Osgiliath. Why, even children are allowed in the taverns these days!" Bartrand had exclaimed, gesturing towards a young girl seated at a richly carved table with a few strangers. Merenor glanced briefly at them, unsure if they would have noticed Bartrand in the general din of the tavern.

"Do not be so proud of your authority," Merenor chided, finding himself thoroughly displeased with the direction in which their conversation had went. "We commonfolk do what we must to survive. Do not be so quick to look down upon us." The pirate's rebuke caused Bartrand to quickly deflate. Before the latter could formulate a proper reply, perhaps to admonish Merenor for his support of 'peasants', a man well into the second half of his lifespan entered the tavern in a coughing fit. Not the natural sort of fit that catches men after a chill breeze, but the deep, retching cough that seemed altogether unnatural. The coughing man regained his composure after a few steps and was soon seated at the bar. The tavern's occupants continued in their merrymaking. Merenor, however, quickly found himself no longer interested in his conversation.

[Edited on 12/07/2013 by Eldarion]

[Edited on 12/07/2013 by Eldarion]

[Edited on 12/07/2013 by Eldarion]
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 08, 2013 12:29
Fay sat down at the table with the others. Lady Freya? Since when was a servant girl a lady?

Raegan spoke of ghosts again. She said that ghosts would not go somewhere so crowded. Did ghosts need their own space then? Would they step aside to let the living through? If so, would the living be able to feel their presence?

A rowdy group of men entered the tavern. One of the men gestured towards their table and she thought she caught the word 'children'. A couple of them stared at them, and she stared back guardedly.
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
findemaxam48
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on: December 08, 2013 01:07
Raegan glanced at Freya, who was wearing that guarded mask she had so often seen her wear at work. Only now, she was facing a group of men. Raegan stiffened; she did not want to leave this tavern like she had the last one. But it made her uncomfortable to bear thier stares.

"Freya," Raegan whispered. "Will those men come near?" Freya said nothing. "Freya." Did the girl not recognize her own name?


Biting her lip, Raegan locked eyes with a man she heard others call Merenor. He, too, stared back at their group, though his expresion betrayed naught of his emotions.

Scar and Khaloch still spoke, seemingly oblivious to the tavern around them. Somewhere in the tiny room, Raegan heard a raging, hacking cough.

Although she could not recall why, the sound was familiar. It spoke of long nights, of lanterns that burned brightly under the crack of her door, of the scent of harsh, cruel alchohal. And, sitting there with her friends, Raegan covered her ears, and tried to drown the sound out.
We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 09, 2013 12:08
"Freya... Freya." Fay suddenly remembered that this was the name she had given to these people, and looked round to see that Raegan was also staring to the men. She covered her ears, and Fay moved to take her hand, and give her some comfort, but then drew back. She did not think the girl would thank her for it.

She too heard the sounds of coughing. Wheezing, creaking coughs, it seemed to her. No, she thought. Go away. Don't bring your germs here. Please, please just be drunk or something. It was an odd wish, but better than the alternative. Sickness, creeping into the beautiful waterside city.

Fay was worried, and she kept shifting her cup between her hands, turning it around, then putting it back on the table just to pick it up a moment later. She would be being missed at work. They could easily replace her if she was not doing her duties. Why was she here, listening to strangers talk? Why was she in this grotty tavern? She should be working. There were people relying on her.
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
findemaxam48
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on: December 09, 2013 03:11
Raegan felt her spirits drop the moment that Freya drew her hand away from her, just a few seconds after Freya had come back to reality. She knew that she was friends with Scar, for certain, but Freya always seemed to shy away from her a bit, even though Raegan had been as helpful as possible by helping her with her cloak.

To Raegan, Freya seemed uneasy at hearing the sounds of coughing. Good. So she wasn't the only one. Now, Freya shifted her cup from hand to hand, toying with it the way a toddler played with a ball. Scar and Khaloch kept talking, so Raegan assumed that either the sound of the hacking had not reached them or they were too preoccupied to notice it.

Someone at the bar coughed dreadfully hard, then stood up to leave the room. He passed by their table, and Raegan's blood froze at the sight of him. Pale. Thin. Sickly. She could practically see a ghost coming out of him already.
We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
Arveleg
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on: December 10, 2013 05:35
“I would truly appreciate if you showed me the maps. I seek other countries. I want to know the world out there. I do not want any more books or maps and study. Would you mind if I went with…”

Lady Scarlett said to him. She was young, looking for adventure in lands far away. He didn't know the north to know fully what to expect on the road he planned to take. What he did know was that life on the road was seldom easy, unless you were highborn and had servants to see to your needs in coaches of luxury. He looked into her eyes again and saw the eagerness that wanted out. Though her parents had an elite unit of Gondor's finest there searching for her, which meant to have her travel with him would be a liability. Yet her delicate hands, her smile, her demeanour... she was gifted in ways he did not know. Her eyes wished to see more of this land other than Minas Tirith and Osgiliath. If she wasn't caught out by those who seek to return her to Minas Tirith, she would see much more of this land. But when the hardships come on the road, would she wish that she was safe in her chambers in the White City?

"M'lady, it's best we will look at the maps in detail when we are not in a crowded tavern. There will be much to do before I leave. Know that what you ask will take you away from here. My road will be long and hard, and I can only guess from these crude maps the best way to go. If you wish to leave this life behind and journey out into the lands unknown to either of us, then there will be no turning back. If you choose willingly, then you are welcome."

Her eyes flickered and looked down as she thought about it. He watched the door. No sign of the soldiers. Lady Scarlett looked over at the door and in came two he recognized. Lady Scarlett smled and said,

"“Allow me to introduce my friends. This is Lady Freya and lady Raegan. This is Khaloch.” "

The working girl at the baker and the lass from the well. They appeared a bit different, but they came to sit. Khaloch stood and nodded to each as they sat. Khaloch said,

"Lady Freya, who was but a serving girl buying bread at the bakers this noon before the rains came. And Lady Raegan of the well. My pleasure meeting you both formally."

coughing from someone coming through the door had Khaloch again look. He watched the man as memories came back to him. The sounds in the tavern seemed to blend. Voices talking of trade and and kids in the seedy inn. that smell.... it was there. Khaloch remembered... all too clearly. He jumped when Lady Scarlett touched his hand. Maybe she said something and he didn't hear. Things returned to normal for Khaloch, except he felt really warm, and the smell though fainter, was still there. That man who came in was getting sick. Raegan was asking Lady Scarlett if she was going to go home or not. Khaloch guessed she wouldn't be unless those soldiers found her and carried her back. The smell must have gotten to Raegan as she seemed to cringe at his passing by.

Khaloch gathered his senses and looked around the room. One of the city guards was obviously off duty and was rather drunk. Another man was talking to him. He also noted a familiar outline of a man. He would have to watch that guy. He had obviously won big at the game that was finishing. More coughing. Khaloch leaned forward and said in a low voice.

"there is pestilence here. I have seen something like this in my old unit far to the south some years ago. One man gets sick, then another, then three more. I too was sick then, but I was fortunate. I did not die. When I came north on the boat, the captain did not stop in Minas Tirith, saying there was some illness spreading there. I think it may here. Lady Scarlett, do you remember seeing any illness in Minas Tirith before you left?"

Khaloch was truly worried, and thought of the prospects of getting out of this city slimming should this break out. Maybe he was thinking too hard about it and these are simple coughs. He gathered his thoughts and sipped his tea and thought of what everyone would do this night. Freya looked like she wanted to be somewhere else. Raegan seemed to be searching like she did that afternoon. Khaloch said to Freya,

"You are a local girl, no? Do you know of another place we could go to get away from this crowd?"


khaloch was itching to get out of this place. He considered maybe going to an old broken building that was overgrown a biit farther to the east, and kept it in mind as a possible place to go to get away from the crowds.
Eighth King of Arthedain - It was in battle that I come into this Kingship, and it will be in Battle when I leave it. There is no peace for the Realm of Arnor. Read the last stand of Arthedain in the Darkest of Days.
Ella
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on: December 10, 2013 07:28
The tavern was becoming even more crowded which meant danger for Scarlett. Khaloch gave her quite a speech. He was right. She always wanted to leave yet the only thing she had done in her life was training combat and working at the Healing Houses. She looked down thinking of what she had heard. Maybe she should write a letter, telling her mother and father she was fine. It was unfair to leave without giving any reason. She looked at him and nodded.

The two girls joined them. It seemed the man already knew them. Raegan was sad and answered the question she made before.

“Then we should get going to find him.” She smiled to Raegan, though she was truly nervous.

She silently thought of a way to get out of the city unnoticed and she hoped Khaloch understood her thoughts and helped her.

“I truly wish to help you finding your father, yet, if you want to go, I am no one to stop you.” Scar told looking to the other girls.

A man entered the tavern coughing. As a healer, she knew it wasn’t just a normal sickness caused by the fickle weather. She noticed how the other girls reacted and she became really concerned. As she looked to two men who were talking, she recognized one of them. It was the man of the well. She thought of going there to greet him yet he was with a soldier. She looked at him hoping that he would recognize her.

Khaloch seemed quite distant, too, and she didn't know what to do. First she thought of calling his name, yet she was uncomfotable with that. With an impulse she touched his hand. As she felt her skin against his, she felt the warmth in her face. She blushed for sure. When she returned to reality, a few seconds later, her mind came with the urge they needed to get out. He spoke and Scar knew there was something truly wrong.

“I have seen many things in Minas Tirith. I worked in the Healing Houses all my life. Now you refer it, more and more people were coming there with these similar symptoms.”

She didn’t want to say more, not to worry all those who were around them. She was also concerned about the fact he had been sick, too. Normally those people died, except one or two irregular cases.

She dispelled that thought from her head and shyly said in a whisper, only for Khaloch to hear. “Scar… I mean, just Scar will be fine for you to call me.”


[Edited on 12/11/2013 by Ella]

[Edited on 12/11/2013 by Ella]
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Eldarion
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on: December 11, 2013 01:03
An unnerving chill slithered down Merenor's spine as the pub's degeneracy resumed and drink continued to flow. Only the intermittent sounds of coughing and retching lingered. Perhaps it was only his own paranoid imagination, but those ailed by the cough seem to have grown numerous in the short time he had been in the pub.

"The hour is getting late," he murmured through the silence of his table. Bartrand finished his drink in a final, bittersweet gulp just as a man clad in the armor and garb of the White Tree stepped into the tavern. The two met eyes, a gesture not lost on Merenor's swift pupils, and Bartrand rose.

"All too right. I've a long day to look forward to. Do take care of yourself, Merenor. I'm sure you'll be frequenting the tavern nightly before your stay in Osgiliath is up. No doubt I shall see you here." Bartrand bid farewell and deposited a few coins at the bar before leaving the tavern behind, second guardsmen in tow. Merenor waited a moment, gathering his thoughts and making a conscious effort to limit his breathing. The air seemed to smell stale and feel thick. It was quite unpleasant, but it could have been the general atmosphere of the pub. The risk, and the coincidence of Bartrand's abrupt departure were too much to ignore.

"Another night, gentlemen." Upon standing, his head swam. The air had grown quite stagnant at full height. He could not deposit his worn, pilfered coins fast enough on the beer soaked counter-top.

"Thanking you, messere," the bartender had replied gratefully before returning focus to a tight bunch at the bar, no doubt drunk enough to empty their pockets. Merenor nodded kindly and turned sharply, his amber hues avoiding the brief glances of the huddled men before inadvertently arriving at a head of auburn locks that seemed quite familiar. A brief survey of her features brought him back to the well and it's warm, unsatisfying water.

And then another cough. Followed by a few in the corner. His eyes had darted to each culprit, noticing no particular pattern. Only a shared proximity. His palms had begun to sweat. He had that in common with every retching man in the bar. Perhaps it was too late?

Merenor waited not a second longer. In a few long strides he found himself bathing in the cool, refreshing breeze of summer night in Osgiliath. His lungs felt absolutely revitalized. However, the scene outside did not. Foot traffic had continued as had the frequency of the cough. Many had donned handkerchiefs over their mouths and guards seemed to be nonexistent. City troops had not been short in years and rarely abandoned posts unless to gather for some greater purpose. Or when seeking particular persons.

"You there!" a guard had shouted, though muffled by a rag wrapped around his jaw. "We're looking for a woman, very conspicuous. She would not be confused as one of the commonfolk. Hair of deep red and a pale complexion, naught but a five or six winters younger than yourself. You would have recognized her."

The pirate was a master of his facade, knowing almost instantly for whom the guard sought. "I've seen but one young maiden of red hair today, but that was near the Eastern gate during my arrival. Seems unlikely that she would be anywhere near the docks," Merenor had supplied without the slightest hint of falsity. Seeming to accept this, the guard moved one to question a girl who hardly appeared to be old enough for roaming the streets at this hour unattended. The pirate's ears tuned to the guardsman's harsh tone.

"This girl has hardly seen who you're looking for, messere. It is a bit late to be conducting a search of his nature, anyhow." It was mildly respectful and happened to suffice in convincing the guard away from his badgering of the girl. Merenor offered as kind of a smile as he could manage. "It is a bit late, is it not? Surely your parents have a curfew?"

[Edited on 12/11/2013 by Eldarion]
HuldahMaria
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on: December 11, 2013 08:04
Aliyah walking slowly down the street. She had not been through this neighborhood for some time. Perhaps something had changed, perhaps there would be a new opportunity. She had been looking for work for some time, but so far, most people didn't even take her seriously. They just looked at her and assumed she couldn't do it. They were almost right, she could barely do it. She had to work faster than others because she was so tiny she couldn't lift as much and often had to use a stool to reach upper shelves.

She had had a position for two years, but had been dismissed because of her father's reputation. Her mistress was insecure and easily swayed by the opinions of other "important" ladies and had dismissed her after a comment about "supporting such a family" caused her to be afraid Aliyah might be a blight on the reputation of her house.

Aliyah was getting desperate. Her father had been gone most of the time for weeks now, only dropping in to sleep twice. He had not left any money for her, even though she had none left and was quickly running out of food. Now she had almost nothing left, by the end of the week there would be no food left in the house.

She sat down out of the way to think, it was starting to get late in the day. She could smell the food from a nearby tavern, food she couldn't have. Bread and jam were getting so boring lately that everything else smelled wonderful. A guard approached her and asked if she had seen a red haired lady, she hadn't. Another man interrupted him and he moved on.

"It is a bit late, is it not? Surely your parents have a curfew?"

"When I was a child, yes, it was understood I was to be home for supper," she answered with a slight sigh in her voice. Yet another person mistaking her for a child. She was 20, she had long since stopped growing. She was the baby daughter who almost didn't make it, and would forever be small and weak, undesirable as a worker. What did this man want? He did not look like someone who would even know of an employment opportunity for a woman.
And I will live to carry Your compassion, to love a world that's broken, to be Your hands and feet, and I will give with the life that I've been given, and go beyond religion to see the world be changed by the power of Your name. ~Lincoln Brewster
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 11, 2013 12:07
Fay nodded politely when Khaloch introduced himself.
He was the man who had given her money to buy bread, so he was kind, but he also seemed hard. He did not have the carefree, above-it-all attitude of the very rich, but undoubtedly he had money.

"Do you know of another place we could go to get away from this crowd?"
Why was she with these people? She should go.

"I... I do not know. I should... I will be missed at work. I must go. Perhaps..."

No, it was not a good idea to take them back to her neighbourhood, although there was an empty house two doors down. She knew this because many families were wanting to move in. There they would be screened from intruders and accusing eyes, but if they were found they would have much to answer for.

"There is one place where you will have privacy to talk over your plans, whatever they may be. But you would only be safe there for a while."

[Edited on 12/11/2013 by wolfbladequeen]
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
findemaxam48
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on: December 11, 2013 01:21
Raegan smiled at Khaloch when he called her "Lady Raegan" from the well. She found it amusing that he had associated her with the word "well", just as she had him. "My pleasure meeting you both formally," he said.

"We are glad too, as well," she said quietly.

There was another outburst of coughing, and now, Raegan wasn;t the only one acting strangely. Khaloch, too, seemed to fall into a brief moment of unawareness, before he surfaced and said, "There is pestilence here. I have seen something like this in my old unit far to the south some years ago. One man gets sick, then another, then three more. I too was sick then, but I was fortunate. I did not die. When I came north on the boat, the captain did not stop in Minas Tirith, saying there was some illness spreading there. I think it may here. Lady Scarlett, do you remember seeing any illness in Minas Tirith before you left?"

Old unit far to the south? Where had Khaloch come from? She had never heard of such a thing- a soldier coming this far for no purpose. And then, Scar- Minas Tirith? Scar was merely a humble healer. And yet Khaloch spoke with such reverenc and chivalry to her. Why?

Raegan shrugged, and began to scar the room. Not that she expected to find Father. But, for the first time her attention was fixated on things living. The colors. The sounds. The people.

Scar still seemed intent on making sure Raegan found her father, though. Even now, she suggested they leave to go find him. Raegan did not want to leave yet. She wanted to stay, and familiarize herself with this place.

"I truly wish to help you finding your father, yet, if you want to go, I am no one to stop you," Scar said to she and Freya.

"No," Raegan answered quickly back. "I cannot speak for Freya, but I, for one, would like to stay. I was just asking for you, Scar."


Freya now spoke of a place where they could go to escape a crowd, and then. of course, mentioned work. Raegan nudghed her and said, "You need not be so concerned with work. There are many jobs here. You can get one anywhere." But, once again, Raegan realized that she, having no experience with work or other manners, could easily be wrong.
We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
Arveleg
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on: December 11, 2013 03:02
A healer. This is her gift. The physician in his old company was a wise and learned man, even if he was rough like they were. It took a certain sort to bind the wounds that soldiers got in battle. And to have the skill and knowledge of the herbs and toxins was truly a gift. This woman had that gift. Look at her hands...

"Scar… I mean, just Scar will be fine for you to call me.”

Lady Scarlett said. Khaloch seemed puzzled at her words at first. He said quietly,

"Scar? May it be that you gain none on your fair face! But I will not refer to you in high title. I should know better being you are sought."

He nodded at her and looked around. Freya stammered some words. She was obviously late for work and worried. But her words of a place that could be used for a night or two seemed well to Khaloch. He said to the three women at the table.

This is not a place that is safe much longer. Both Freya and I I know of places. I know one nearby here in the ruins of old East Osgiliath. Maybe the place Freya knows would be better? if it is in West Osgiliath we will have to cross the bridge. It may be best do get farther away from these docklands."

He looked at Scarlett, then to Raegan, who wished to stay here, trying to comfort Freya about not worrying about her job. Jobs can be easy to find, but one that you enjoy and are good at are not always the sort you find. Khaloch stood and said,

"You decide what you wish to do. Me, even though I paid for my room here, I do not wish to stay here. I need some air. I will be outside."

Khaloch gave the three women each a slight bow and walked outside. The air, though cooler, was humid as the jungle swamp reaches of Far Harad. Still, he breathed deep and leaned against the wall near the door.

Looking about the street, it seemed there were City Guards asking questions. They have likely been prompted by the Elite soldiers that were searching for Lady Scarlett. He had to remember to call her Scar when speaking, but in his head she will always be Lady Scarlett.

He listened and heard a ship hand talking to a rather short woman.... she could easily pass as a child. She looked up at him, and the ship hand turned and looked at him as well...
Eighth King of Arthedain - It was in battle that I come into this Kingship, and it will be in Battle when I leave it. There is no peace for the Realm of Arnor. Read the last stand of Arthedain in the Darkest of Days.
Eldarion
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on: December 11, 2013 11:18
Merenor felt his face grow warm with embarrassment at his folly. She was a woman; how could he be so foolish? Perhaps it was a trick of the darkness or maybe fatigue had finally caught up him with in a most inconvenient fashion to betray his eyesight. "Sincerest of apologies," he quickly provided with a brief bow of his head. "I am Merenor. No offense meant, I did not realize you were, in fact, a young woman. Today has been tiresome and my wits have long since left me."

His voice resounded eerily in the alcoves and hollows of the back streets despite the substantial foot traffic coursing through them. All was relatively silent with the exception of an obtrusive cough piercing night. It left an unshakable doom on the sea-faring pirate, quite unlike any adrenaline inducing danger that one would encounter far out to sea on a stormy evening. The atmosphere reminded him of dark streets and disease-ridden vagrants in the recesses of Umbar's lower districts. It was not a memory he cared to recall. Many good sailors had fell incurably ill during that expedition. Though, the profits made were split that many fewer ways. The thought turned his stomach to knots.

"These guardsmen have been looking for a woman I know to be in that tavern," Merenor explained to the woman, gesturing towards the pub he had left minutes prior. "It would appear as if she is the daughter of a very prominent figure in Gondor. One who is certainly in danger. No doubt you've noticed the coughing as well?" His amber hues glanced towards the tap house, just as a figure emerged silhouetted against the sickly glow coming from inside. As the moonlight illuminated his features it became quite clear that he was not a usual patron. One clearly of more awareness. His features were recognizable and Merenor plucked them from his memory to recall the man having sat at one of the tables with the girl from the well. The very girl for whom the guard so diligently searched.

"Messere, a word?" He gestured with a calloused hand, hoping to glean some information from the fellow. "That girl you sat with at the table..." Merenor paused, glancing about before he continued. "There are guardsmen inquiring as to her whereabouts. And there is clearly an ailment spreading through the population here. Surely you too have noticed this and it isn't just shore-leave paranoia?"
HuldahMaria
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on: December 12, 2013 07:35
Aliyah did not hold the man's mistake against him, it happened often, it was just how she looked.

"These guardsmen have been looking for a woman I know to be in that tavern, It would appear as if she is the daughter of a very prominent figure in Gondor. One who is certainly in danger. No doubt you've noticed the coughing as well?" he continued.

She wondered why someone from a prominant family would be here, and sought, unless there was some scandal. And the coughing, his words sent a chill down her spine. Something was wrong, she had just begun to notice something odd developing in this neighborhood.

"What has this woman done that guards are searching for her?" she asked. She hardly waited for an answer, her mind was back on the issue of this disease spreading in the area. She knew she must get away quickly before it was too late, she would never survive something like this. She hesistated, hoping to get more information from these men, if they perhaps knew where it was coming from and where it might be safe to go.
And I will live to carry Your compassion, to love a world that's broken, to be Your hands and feet, and I will give with the life that I've been given, and go beyond religion to see the world be changed by the power of Your name. ~Lincoln Brewster
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 12, 2013 11:40
Many other places where she could get work? Work was well sought-after, but presumably Raegan did not know that. She could be replaced any day. There were many people vying for her job. She was better paid than many, and although the job was not always pleasant, at least she did not work in the sewer systems.

So Khaloch also knew of a place they could stay. She did not remember ever seeing him before, but he had apparently been here before. Recently, perhaps, for him to remember it, or perhaps a while ago, for she was sure she had never come across him or heard of him.
"Yes, it is in West Osgiliath. Near my home."
And my work, she thought.

Khaloch left.
"Shall we go? We cannot stay here." Fay asked the others.
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
findemaxam48
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on: December 12, 2013 02:04
After Khaloch excused himself, Freya asked, "Shall we go? We cannot stay here."

"Where is the place of which you speak?" Raegan asked. "Is it safe? From disease?"

She said that although she knew that from disease, there was no safe place to dwell. But she felt the need to encourage her friends somehow. Before Scar or Freya could remark, Raegan said, "Let us go. Quickly. If nothing more, we should find Khaloch."

Her vioce, which had been raspy and gravel like from her former lack of speech was slowly becoming stronger. The tea had seemed to help tremendously.

The three of them stepped out of the tavern and walked down the street. Coughs were prominent everywhere, hacking through the normal city sounds.

Raegan spotted Khaloch standing off to the side. "Look," she said to the other to. "Khaloch."

It was nearly too late when she stepped forward, halted only by Scar's gasp. Khaloch was in the company of a guardsmen.

Raegan's heart leaped. She knew not why Scar had to hide from the authorities, but she knew that she needed to protect her friend. "Back inside!" She hissed.
We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
Arveleg
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on: December 12, 2013 03:51
"Messere, a word? That girl you sat with at the table. There are guardsmen inquiring as to her whereabouts. And there is clearly an ailment spreading through the population here. Surely you too have noticed this and it isn't just shore-leave paranoia?"

The ship hand said as he looked at him. Khaloch looked at the young woman he had been talking to for a moment before stepping down to the street. He gave a slight bow to the small woman then looked the man in the eye. He looked like a privateer and had seen some hardship. But Khaloch was not sure if he should tell him anything of Lady Scarlett. He seemed to know enough about her already. And was he not speaking to one of the City Guard inside the tavern? Khaloch said,

"Yes, a pestilence is in the air. No paranoia. And of the fair lady of Minas Tirith that the Elite soldiers seek and now the City Guard ask about in their stead, she has escaped them. Was on a river trader that left this evening, heading south. Here, I sat with three girls and had tea with them."

Khaloch could see the man wasn't buying what he said, but he had decided that he wasn't going to give Lady Scarlett over to those who seek her. If anyone was going to collect the reward by doing that, it would be him, not this guy who smelled of profit. How did he know he wouldn't turn her over to those who seek her? As the ship hand pondered his words, Khaloch turned to the small woman that stood by. He said to her, but really to both of them,

"My pardon, I am Khaloch, formerly of the Gondorian Ninth Southern Guard."

He looked up to the bridge of Osgiliath and saw the commander still standing there, watching. They would not get across the bridge easily without questions. The Elite soldier from Minas Tirith were guarding it.

It was then the three women started to come out if the tavern. Khaloch looked and saw Lady Scarlett shroud herself in her cloak, they quickly stepped back inside. Khaloch looked again up to the bridge, and the commander was gone. What did he see? It was going to be tough getting across to the west side without questions. The could take refuge in that old broken building he had walked past after he had gotten off ship, but it didn't get them away from the docklands. He looked back at the ship hand and the small woman as he mulled the day's events in his head.
Eighth King of Arthedain - It was in battle that I come into this Kingship, and it will be in Battle when I leave it. There is no peace for the Realm of Arnor. Read the last stand of Arthedain in the Darkest of Days.
Ella
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on: December 12, 2013 04:52
“We cannot stay here forever.” Scar whispered sometime after the other girl’s spoke. As soon as they stepped outside, there were guards and Raegan quickly lead them back inside. Scarlett thanked them and thought for a while. The disease was spreading so they couldn’t be in Osgiliath forever, plus, if they stayed there for too long, they would catch her. The thought of writing a letter returned to her mind.

“We should wait sometime. I will just be writing a letter and we need to go away from this place.”

Scarlett knew how to read and write because her parents persisted in education. She took a piece of parchment, a brush and sepia ink and began to write.

“Captain Seth,
I am truly aware the consequences of leaving home can be severe, yet I had to. You always told me when I grew up I would succeeded my mother in the Houses of Healing, even against my will. Although you gave me theoretic education, you never allowed me to know the world besides the books and maps; you never asked me what I wanted to become. You are always going away and returning and I felt too many times I was going to lose you. You never cared about how I felt. I always wanted to go with you, to be like you. You did not watch me truly growing. Yet, above all those things, I wanted to have a father, who could give me a legacy and who could have helped me in all sorts of ways. Now, I have grown up and the road is waiting for me. Do not fear. At least you taught me the basics of combat and survival.
Those are the main reasons I left. However, I will return and I will make you proud of me. And I do not know if you ever noticed I love you.
Tell mother I love her and not to worry about me. I can take care of myself.
With love,
Scarlett”


She finished in a slender calligraphy. She knew they needed to find someone, maybe in the dock, to deliver it to Minas Tirith. She turned to the other girls.

“Let us go, my friends.”

She went out and the guards and soldiers were gone. She saw Khaloch, the man from the well and another girl. Scar looked to the man who was protecting her and said “We cannot wait longer.”
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Eldarion
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on: December 12, 2013 07:36
Much to Merenor's chagrin, the man who had introduced himself as Khaloch confirmed his fears of plague. A sickness spreading through Osgiliath at an alarming rate putting himself and the entire population at risk. This left him few options, all of them involving a quick escape from the city. A city that was no doubt soon to be quarantined if the city guard had any say. The King would loathe to have any plague-ridden citizens venturing into Minas Tirith and spreading the ailment.

"Well Khaloch, I am called Merenor and my allegiance changes with the coin," he introduced properly with a curt bow of his head. "And though there seems to be little profit in this particular avenue, I think we could work together for the betterment of ourselves and the fair maiden for whom the city guard searches. You see, I have no interest in harboring plague, a sentiment we all might share. This means leaving Osgiliath and promptly. I've yet to formulate a proper plan but I am well-versed in the operations of a ship and that may be our best means of escape." He spoke in a hushed tone, amber hues ever glancing from side to side. As the last few words fell from his lips those pupils caught Scarlett and the two girls flanking her as they approached.

"Let us go, my friends."

"A fair suggestion," Merenor added as he surveyed the group. Not an inconspicuous bunch, to be sure. "We must be swift and will need to gain passage to the docks. And you," he gestured towards Scarlett with an idle hand. "You will need to conceal yourself. A cloak tightly wrapped and perhaps a walking stick? The guise of an old woman would work nicely. We must blend with the crowd to avoid these prying eyes."

A guardsman rounded the corner without warning, lightly armored and strangely alone on a nightly patrol. Merenor quickly sidestepped before Scarlett, obscuring any line of sight the guard might have had on the lady of Minas Tirith. It was too suspicious an act to go unnoticed. "Sir, I am seeking the Lady Scarlett of Minas Tirith! Surely you have seen her?" The guard closed in, eliminating the distance between them. Before the group could react properly the lawman had gained a sufficient view of Scarlett's visage. "L-lady Scarlett?" he asked in bewilderment. Merenor thought quickly, his eyes darting to either side to note an empty street in each direction before a deft hand grasped the short sword dangling beneath his cloak at his side. With one swift move it was buried in the man's gut.

"This should not have happened," he murmured as the guard slumped forward on the blade. Merenor shifted him towards the stone wall of the nearest building and let him lie gently against the cold stone. "May the Valar accept you." The blade was cleaned on the guard's cloak before being promptly sheathed. He turned towards the group solemnly. "We must go."

[Edited on 12/13/2013 by Eldarion]
HuldahMaria
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on: December 13, 2013 08:08
Aliyah froze in shock and terror. To kill a man for asking a question? Who could do such a thing? This man was dangerous, if he could do this, he might do anything. She backed away and turned to run into the inn for some measure of safety but ran into one of the other women as she turned around. She was so frightened she didn't even think to apologize.
And I will live to carry Your compassion, to love a world that's broken, to be Your hands and feet, and I will give with the life that I've been given, and go beyond religion to see the world be changed by the power of Your name. ~Lincoln Brewster
findemaxam48
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on: December 14, 2013 12:59
"You will need to conceal yourself. A cloak tightly wrapped and perhaps a walking stick? The guise of an old woman would work nicely. We must blend with the crowd to avoid these prying eyes."

Raegan set her jaw. Scar, dressed as an old lady? She couldn't fathom the thought. Scar was too graceful, too elegent, for that guise. And she hated the man called Merenor for suggesting it. If he wanted Scar to remain hidden, he would have to see to it himself.

"You should not tell Scar how to act," Raegan snapped, her tone of vioce shocking her. The other's seemed surprised as well, especially becasue Raegan had never raised her voice above a whisper or dull call. Merenor seemed especially surprised. Raegan took it that he had never been stood up to before. She herself never thought that she would ever have the courage to confront anyone at all, a guard no less. But ehre they were. And here she was. "Lady Scar is my friend and I will not let you-"

Raegan was cut off by a guard who rounded the corner and recognized Scar. Before Raegan could think of a word to say, Merenor whipped out his blade and killed the man.

"This should not have happened," Merenor said, dragging the body off. When he wiped off the sword, blood droplets pattered the ground.

Raegan was so shocked she couldn't even speak. Would Merenor turn on them, and do the same to them, if they didn't listen to his orders? She decided she didnot like this guard.


Raegan stumbled backward and fell to the ground as the female she saw with Khaloch ran into her. The woman, who was a little shorter than Raegan, didn't apologize for running into her. Raegan was uaed to that, but it still enraged her. This woman, and Frenor combined, were becoming too much to handle. Her palms stung from the impact of hitting the ground, and her injury from the tavern before began to sting.
We were one in the same, running like moths to the flame. You'd hang on every word I'd say, but now they only ricochet.
Ella
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on: December 14, 2013 02:26
Scarlett thought for a while when the man suggested her disguise. However, Raegan didn’t seem to approve that plan. She was truly surprised with her voice when she spoke and smiled. “My dear friend, you should not worry about…”

A guard appeared alone in the street. She froze as he looked at her. He knew her, maybe from those ceremonies in the Palantir.

“L-lady Scarllet.” He began, yet he stopped as Merenor buried his sword in the man’s gut. She almost let a scream out, but she stifled it with her hand. Running to Khaloch, without noticing, she hid herself behind him, grabbed firmly his harm and began crying. Scar was used to safe lives, not being the reason to take them. Tears rolled insistently from her eyes while a strong feel of guilty filled her heart. Now she really needed to leave.

Scarlett looked to Merenor horrified, then to Khaloch. “Let us go, please.” She begged between sobs.


[Edited on 12/14/2013 by Ella]
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HuldahMaria
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on: December 14, 2013 03:38
Aliyah regained her balance and spun around again, feeling trapped and in danger. As her panic settled she realized she had actually knocked someone over. She paused offered the girl a hand.

Her instrincts told her to flee, but she felt so trapped at the same time. If any of these people chose to pursue her, she could not outrun them, and she had no one to whom she could turn for protection. These three other women did not seem like the types to be friends with someone who valued life so little.
And I will live to carry Your compassion, to love a world that's broken, to be Your hands and feet, and I will give with the life that I've been given, and go beyond religion to see the world be changed by the power of Your name. ~Lincoln Brewster
wolfbladequeen
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on: December 15, 2013 09:58
Dead. Dead. Just... dead. Fay could not clear her head. She should get back to work. Why was she thinking about work at a time like this? Life, work, death, friends? What mattered the most?

The woman with Merenor collided with Raegan. She looked scared, and seemed uncertain of what to do. She offered to help Raegan back up again, but she did not seem to want to be involved. Did Fay want to be involved? Was it too late to go back?
If anyone had happened to look out of a window on the east side of the palace, they might have noticed two figures in the darkness, dancing in a square bordered by living plants, out of time with the dancers inside but perfectly in time with each other.
Arveleg
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on: December 15, 2013 07:29
The sudden and indiscriminate knifing of the soldier in cold blood by this man took Khaloch by surprise. He turned to Merenor and said,


"You are a lawless man! Why did you kill him? He was just doing his job. You knew nothing of him, whether he has a wife or child, yet you would knife him without trying another way. You are a dangerous man, and are a danger to anyone who is with you. When we could have slipped out quietly while eyes were elsewhere, they will now surely be looking hard for the killer of a soldier of Gondor.


Khaloch could see Lady Scarlett was frightened as she held his hand and shielding herself behind him. Maybe the only way to save her from the troubles this man would bring was to have the Elite Guard find her and take her back to Minas Tirith. Maybe then he could also go there and maybe find another way to help her to freedom. It may be too much, but he could see the chaos building in the street. Seeing two of the high guards approaching. He could see one was the commander. Khaloch yelled out to them as he pointed at Merenor,


"The man who killed the soldier is here, and he tries to kidnap Lady Scarlett of Minas Tirith! for ransom!"


Khaloch may not still be in the military, but he would not stand by as blatent murder was done right before him. He tried to keep himself between Miss Scar and Merenor, and was ready to with his sword.
Eighth King of Arthedain - It was in battle that I come into this Kingship, and it will be in Battle when I leave it. There is no peace for the Realm of Arnor. Read the last stand of Arthedain in the Darkest of Days.
Eldarion
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on: December 15, 2013 11:09
"You are a lawless man! Why did you kill him? He was just doing his job. You knew nothing of him, whether he has a wife or child, yet you would knife him without trying another way. You are a dangerous man, and are a danger to anyone who is with you. When we could have slipped out quietly while eyes were elsewhere, they will now surely be looking hard for the killer of a soldier of Gondor."

The backlash was to be expected. In Merenor's experience, murder was frowned upon, particularly when the other party wasn't already with weapon drawn. But necessity had plunged his blade before. A man slow to his sword rarely prospered in the dangerous realm of privateering. The guilt was easier to stomach with time.

Merenor was quick with a retort. "Our course of action was to be what? A diversion after he had seen her-"

"The man who killed the soldier is here, and he tries to kidnap Lady Scarlett of Minas Tirith! for ransom!"

The world whirled before him as Merenor turned sharply to see the source of Khaloch's loud accusations, which were not entirely unfounded; a quick glance about would be more than enough to incriminate him for murder. Two guards, one seeming to be of relatively high of rank by the emblazoned helmet atop his head and a black cloak draped about broad shoulders, were brought quickly to attention and both of their gauntlet-clad hands found the hilts of their broadswords. A fight, no matter how much anger might have built behind his eyes with each skilled parry and deft pirouette into a furious strike, he was unable to win. The odds were stacked against him heavily as Khaloch's stance became quite defensive with a sword evident at his belt.

"What would you have done?" Merenor paused momentarily as he glanced at the pair of advancing guardsmen. "This deception will not succeed for long," he quickly added before a response could be given. His gazed had rested briefly on Khaloch and adverted only for a moment to the cowering lady Scarlett partially concealed behind him. Without risking another word he turned swiftly on the ball of his foot, leaning into a agile sprint across the damp cobblestones and into the adjoining street. His hood and cloak streamed behind him as he dashed through the empty length of road. He spared himself any glance over his shoulder.

His feet carried him without a hint of hesitation through a thinning crowd near the docks and down beneath the arch of a bridge spanning the river where he leaned heavily against the damp stone to catch his breath. Merenor had slipped into darkness; seeming to be momentarily safe from both the inquisitive lawmen and a spreading illness.

[Edited on 12/16/2013 by Eldarion]
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