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wolfbladequeen
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on: December 23, 2013 06:29
"How will we pay for this journey? I have no money, nor anything else, and even if you are willing to pay for me, surely the money will at some point run out. We are not merchants, that we might sell goods on the way." Fay spoke to the others.
"I should go back. I cannot help you, and my father and others rely on me. I should go home. It is not yet too late to go back to work. I will just be an expense and a burden."

She said this plainly, without emotion, for she could not decide which feeling was stronger, her longing for adventure, or her sense of duty.
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.
HuldahMaria
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on: December 23, 2013 08:22
Aliyah watches Raegan as she calmed down. The first light of dawn was coming and the river was beautiful. Then they were interrupted by Assur I forming them of their "welcoming committee". She had a sinking feeling, would Lady Scarlett be found? And would they all be in trouble for being with her, for apparently helping her escape? Morfinniel offered Scar a cloak from Lorien. Aliyah was surprised that the elf took such interest in helping them.

Aliyah kept quiet in the background. Freya seemed to want to return home, but this seemed like a terrible idea. All was not well in Osgiliath, this much Aliyah was sure. "Freya, I don't think you should go back,". She said quietly. "There is sickness there, you can't stop it. It will find you if you go back there". She didn't want to offend Freya, who had a family, people who cared about her. But surely they too would soon be fleeing the city.

Aliyah looked again at the elf. What kind of help might she be able to offer them? Her mind raced ahead momentarily. She couldn't live off of Scar's generosity alone for long.
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
Eldarion
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on: December 24, 2013 12:14
Assur had no idea he was harboring such valuable 'cargo' on this particular trip. A daughter of a Captain of Gondor was no mere citizen which would explain the city guard searching ship to arriving ship for her. No doubt there was also some reward for her return, though it seemed doubtful that he could collect on such a bounty without difficulties; not to mention the strain on his conscience.

At her plea, the shiphand had given a solemn nod before replying. "I will take care of them. Don that wonderful elven cloak and that should ensure our secrecy." He returned to the deck, his cloak and tunic billowing in a strong river breeze as his worn leather boot-clad feet carried him to the plank that had been extended to span the few feet between vessel and pier. The guards were awaiting him.

"Your offer, although convincing," began one of the guardsmen with a quick glance at Assur's proffered pouch of coins, "cannot be accepted. We shall do a brief search of the cabin and cargo hold." The trio began their search unhindered, pulling up the rusted steel latch to a worn wooden slab that revealed the cargo hold below. It was empty, dark, and dank. They moved on, descending down into the cabin to briefly survey the passengers. None of them said a word, their steely gazes resting momentarily on each of the five before, satisfactorily, vacating the vessel. Assur followed them off, exchanging a few kind words and ensuring the guards that the woman would be found with a sly smirk across his lips.

"We should be off quite soon. I cannot imagine staying longer than needed in Minas Tirith will bode well if we are sworn to secrecy. There are a few supplies I need to purchase but then I suggest we move down river with haste." Assur paused, his lips pursed as he glanced about them. "Do not worry about compensation. I will not abandon you all for the sake of money now. And there is adventure to be had." A smile spread across his lips as he drew his cloak about himself and made for the nearby market.
Arveleg
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on: December 25, 2013 01:25
Khaloch was silent as they made their way to the quay. He was still thinking about his encounter with the High Commander. He pulled out the rolled parchment he was given, unrolled it as he walked, and quickly put it away again. These two guys he picked could not realize what he had involved then with by having them assigned to him. He decided to talk to them.

”So you two are in the Elite Guard of Minas Tirith. They are held in high regard, after the Guards of the Citadel.I hear your training is quite hard.Been in battle?”

The two were silent. There had been no battles for them. Khaloch ended the awkward silence and asked,

”Either of you have families?”

The tall soldier nodded and said,

”A wife and a young daughter.”

Khaloch nodded and stopped him from saying any more. The other soldier didn’t say anything. When Khaloch looked at him, the other soldier said,

"I have a father and a mother and three brothers, and I am betrothed.”

Khaloch looked at him and asked,

”How long ago?”

“A couple months ago, on Midsummers Day. We will marry on Midsummers Day next year.”


He replied. Khaloch nodded slightly, thinking for a moment as he looked around. The heat of the day was building, and like the day before, it would be severe. The look of a storm was already building in the south and east, and would likely hit the city in the late afternoon. He finally said,

”Midsummers Day. That should be well before the time of year these summer storms come. I will do my best to have you back to your regular duty well before then.”

They were approaching the quay and the City Guards were doing their best searching the boats that stopped in port. But if anyone wished to escape from upriver, all they had to do was stay the course, for none of the boats passing were being stopped. Khaloch eyes the ones that were in port. He would need one that was solid yet common. He watched as the guards questioned the captains and looked around. One man caught his eye, for a bribe was about to take place. Yet the guard seemed to refuse. The guards went on down the quay. Khaloch said to both men with him.

”Make yourself as comfortable as you can while standing here. Watch that boat for now. I’ll be right back.”

Khaloch left the two Gondorian soldiers standing in the shadows of a warehouse while he went to talk to the guards. He had an exchange with them, and soon was back. The two men told him that a man was seen leaving the boat just a few moments before, and walked swiftly down the street. Khaloch nodded and said to them,

”We’ll use that boat. You two remember your training? On my word, we’ll quick-time to the boat, and each of you take a post toward each end of the boat and I’ll board.For now, we’ll sit tight and see if anyone else leaves the boat. If the merchant returns, we’ll move right away”

They all took positions close to the boat, but remained well out of sight.
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 26, 2013 09:23
As Scarlett saw the elf willing to exchange cloaks with her, she felt truly grateful. A bright light appeared in her eyes. She was happy to see and feel one of those, and she was honored to be able to wear it.

“Thank you, my lady.” She said, making a small bow.

She handed her green cloak and quickly wore the one Morfinniel gave to her. Three guards entered the cabin and began their search. Scarlett sat still, covering her face with the elven cloak. She noticed a smirk across Assur’s lips and smiled. He helped her, too. Everyone there was helping her and she was thankful, but she still felt a slight guilt. She nodded to him and smiled.

“Thank you, sir.”

Assur went to the market. Scar wanted to go to the dock, even if it was dangerous. She looked to the elf and to Reagan. The woman should stay there and rest. She quickly whispered in a gangling elvish she learned from the books in the Houses of Healing

“I need to buy some provisions and I need to know more about a friend of mine, who had been captured by the soldiers of my city. Would you come with me, please?”

She looked to the eyes of Morfinniel and then she went to the deck. She looked around and there was nobody there, except the guards. It was somewhat strange in that time of the day. It was hot and she wanted to undress the cloak, yet she knew she couldn’t. She thought of Khaloch and hopped, again, he could return as soon as he could. Scarlett sighed. It was a bad idea to leave, it was too risky. She sat in the deck, between some barrels and waited for Assur to return.
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findemaxam48
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on: December 26, 2013 01:23
Raegan smiled at friends, and especially stared at the Elf- she was still wary of Assur, no matter how Scar interacted with him. Freya still seemed to want to go home, back to work, but Raegan said to her, "You are no burden. You are a worthy companion on this journey, and besides, now your too involved in this adventure to leave." She grinned. "I bet that after five minutes of work, you would be dying to return." Then she remembered that there were people dying of pestilance, and she cringed.



Raegan knew from Scar's glances and quiet words that she wanted her to stay and rest. Raegan inched towards Scar, who was sitting quitely between barrels donning the cloak that Morfinniel, and said, "I can travel. I do not need to stay here. Im sure that I will be fine. Really."
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 27, 2013 07:30
Khaloch leaned against a post in the shade of the overhanging roof. His eyes saw movement on the boat... a cloaked person came up from the cabin and looked as though they would leave the boat, but at the last moment paused and went off to sit themselves down. Khaloch stared hard to see in the glare of the sun, and it could be anyone. He decided it was a woman by the movements, and for a brief moment, his eyes seemed to lock upon theirs, a deep emerald green glow from under the hood. He blinked and stared hard, but he could not see anything more. There was a woman on board the boat they would take. He would have to reassure anyone on board that their passage south was secure, as far as it was agreed between them and the boat's proprietor. Yet Khaloch was intrigued by the momentary touch of those eyes....
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 29, 2013 03:55
Assur's lean frame wove precariously between the surging crowds of the market. An old, weather-stained hood protected his scalp from the sun quite spectacularly, doing well to hide his unshaven face as well. The ashen gray of his cloak made him quite inconspicuous as he threaded through the typical market throng and to dilapidated stall with poorly measured angles giving the entire setup the illusion that it may collapse at any moment. Assur approached carefully. A man of many chill winters glanced up from an aged, yellowing scroll to eye the oncoming consumer. "Yer business?" A whiskey-soaked and tobacco-cured croaking, it seemed.

"I'm in need of provisions and fresh water. Salted meats will do and the fruits newly harvested, if you would." The request was met with a heavy sigh before the elderly merchant waved a gnarled hand and led Assur down a set of wooden steps as well-built as the former's stall. A brief transaction later, involving more silver than he cared to part with, had secured the shiphand enough provisions for a few weeks, though the fruit was bound to spoil in less than two in the midsummer heat.

Laden cart trailing behind him, Assur rounded a corner of the market to a long stretch of various merchants hawking animal skins and other products of game. Nothing of interest caught his eye; most of the goods displayed poor craftsmanship. Assur, having spent years trudging through deep snows tracking game and properly skinning them beneath the thick canopy of pine trees, could spot a poor tanned piece of leather a furlong away. One particular salesman had noticed the shiphand as he studied a few wares and made a beeline. "Assur, my boy!" The Dol Amroth native turned sharply on his heel to behold a man he had spent many summers with in Anorien; in fact, the man had solely responsible for Assur's almost prodigal skills with the bow.

"Harlan! It has been years!" The two men briefly embraced, Harlan eyeing his once apprentice.

"The years have been unkind to you, it would seem. A few months of good eating would do wonders. And what's this? Are you a fisherman now? Have you forsaken your talents?!" Harlan admonished upon noticing the barrel of fish Assur was hauling.

"These are provisions. But I have turned to the sea to make my living. I had no interest in mercantile after the forests ran dry and made for Ithilien. Fishing has been lucrative enough." A bold faced lie to be sure.

"Well, I hear many of the old hunters have been going south towards Pelargir. There are rumors of plague in Osgiliath and much of Anorien."

"I come from Osgiliath." Assur paused, his brow furrowed in thought. "Why Pelargir?"

"The same question is on my lips as well. No doubt trouble is brewing. Word has come down from the top levels of Minas Tirith that royal family and their advisers have been troubled by illness and what's more, a kidnapping! One of the captain's daughters, no less! Troubled times, we live in." Harlan's gaze had drooped to the graveled pathway before he perked up quite suddenly. "I've something to give you!" He hurried off to several chests stored behind his stall and produced a sleek, ashen bow along with a
masterfully crafted quiver storing a handful of jagged-tip arrows. "I've kept it since your days of practice. I've been meaning to sell it, but if you're going south, you may have more need of it than I of the few coins I could make!"

Goodbyes were exchanged and Assur had slung the quiver over his shoulder with its leathern strap resting comfortably across his torso, the bow adorning the opposite shoulder. Onward he trudged.

His return was immediate, making no further stops to entice the coin from his pocket and tugging a cart laden with few barrels and a sack of fruits. The ship was much as he left it. To his surprise, though, the guards had not multiplied in the time he was gone despite a few many more ships moored at the docks. Assur brought the cart to a halt near the deck and made the difficult transfer to his vessel to properly store the provisions for their journey. As he rose to stretch his sore back and wipe the sweat from his brow an unmistakable sensation came upon him, as if he could physically feel a piercing gaze in his direction.
Ella
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on: December 29, 2013 05:37
"I can travel. I do not need to stay here. Im sure that I will be fine. Really."

Raegan was still with Scarlett as she waited for Assur in the deck. She smiled to her and passed gently her hand throw the girl’s hair.

“I will take care of you, then, my lady.” She whispered in a soft and respectful voice.

Suddenly, she saw a man coming to the boat. Assur hadn’t taken long, yet each minute seemed to last hours for the woman, since she was afraid of getting caught. He came with a quiver and a bow on the other shoulder. He approached the boat and with a sign for Raegan to stand there, Scarlett stood up to help Assur taking the provisions inside.

“You brought a fine bow, sir.” She remarked, looking at his shoulder.

However, the man’s expression changed as if he was suspecting something; as if someone was watching them. Her heart beat faster and her breath speed up. A slight smile was drawn in her lips. It could be Khaloch returning! Scarlett looked around and she didn’t see anyone besides the guards. She sighed. By now, he was in Mina’s Tirith prisions.
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Arveleg
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on: December 29, 2013 08:00
Khaloch watched as the merchant returned with supply for a long voyage. Waiting for the merchant to get his procured goods loaded on the boat and stowed, Khaloch silently gave the sign to move when the merchant wiped his brow. In fine Gondorian precision they moved out of the shadows, one to the left, one to the right, with Khaloch bringing up the center in a less-precise step. They stood at the quay where the boat was tied, one man each by the forward and the aft rope. Khaloch had his hand on the hilt of his sheathed knife, while his men had a sword at ready. Khaloch said in a commanding voice,

"I hereby requisition this boat in the name of Elessar, King of Gondor! My men and I require passage to Pelargir by the swiftest means."

He looked around the deck, and could see others there. Movement of a cloaked woman in the shadow of the cabin doorway behind the merchant caught the edge of his eye but he stared at the merchant to await his answer. Khaloch couldn't be sure, but a glint of green from under the hood lit up at the sound of his voice. If it was indeed Lady Scarlett, she could not reveal herself now, for his two men were ones that were on the forefront of searching for her. He quickly considered another plan. He added to his word before the merchant had replied,

"The business of you and those aboard are your own. And, only room for two will be required. We will have our own provision, and will not interfere with your activities be they legal."

The cloaked woman in the cabin doorway started to step out, but Khaloch put his hand to his lips and rubbed his finger on them slightly. His subtle sign must have been recognized for she slipped back. Khaloch sighed slightly though he noticed the tall soldier look about. Fortunately his angle of view was not toward the doorway. The other soldier was eyeing another woman, and Khaloch noted her cloak. He wanted to look at her closer, for surely she was one of the Eldar. He had only heard about them from some of the men in the Ninth who had come from the north. He had to keep his gaze on the merchant, but was concerned the tall soldier would recognize the cloak. If anyone would see through the veil that worked to conceal Lady Scarlett, it would be him. They would have to get boarded and get on their way. He would relieve the tall soldier to return to his unit. The other he would have to take with him. He said to the merchant,

"What say you? Will you allow us to board?"

[Edited on 12/30/2013 by Arveleg]
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 29, 2013 09:30
Scarlett was going to the cabin, carrying some supplies inside. However, she heard a voice, a voice she long waited to hear again. She lifted carefully her head to look behind, yet Assur’s figure covered the man she wanted to see. Quickly, she put the provisions inside and ran. In her heart there was great happiness, though there was something wrong, also. She heard King Elessar’s name and that would mean trouble to her. Scar ran outside, without saying a word to them, and she saw him. Khaloch was there again and he brought two soldiers she had seen, one of them who she knew. He made her a sign that made her turn back. She put her hood back, and the one’s inside could only see her smile fading. She looked at them and whispered.

“Khaloch is back. However, he brought two soldiers and one of them will come along with him. For now, my name is Alura and I am nothing but a traveler.”

She put the hood back again and sat in a corner, near Aliyah, silently lost in her thoughts. She wasn’t expecting Khaloch to return with two soldiers, specially the one who was close to her father. Did he betray her? Was it his plan all along? She knew the reward for finding her was high, but she never thought he would hand her. She remembered the way he showed her maps and the way he helped her. A rage filled her heart, not for the betrayal, but for trusting that man.
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findemaxam48
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on: December 30, 2013 02:03
Raegan bit her lip as she watched Khaloch approach, first to contain her excitement, and then to hide her rage. Scar's face had been joyous as she gave them her new name and identity. But then they all saw the soldiers with Khaloch, and that meant that with the soldiers, Khaloch had brought fear.

Raegan quietly leaned over to Scar. Assur had given her a bow and quiver, so at least they would be somewhat protected if something went bad."Scar," She said softly. "I will not let them end this quest 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.
Arveleg
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on: December 30, 2013 09:44
The contemplation on the merchant's face said that he had little choice if he didn't want to bring down the might of Gondor into his business. Khaloch waved to the tall soldier to come, and he whispered to him,

"You will not be needed from here, so I need you to run a message to Commander Seth. Tell him that I have secured passage to Pelargir. Once you do this, you are free to return to your unit."

The tall soldier didn't waste any time moving. He didn't want to be away from his family, and the prospect of having to take ship to Pelargir and be away without word for what would likely be a long time didn't sit well with him. With a nod he was gone. Khaloch looked at the other soldier who was hoping for the same consideration. Khaloch looked back at the merchant.
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.
HuldahMaria
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on: December 30, 2013 10:04
Aliyah was nervous. Khaloch was back, but with soldiers. She didn't know if she trusted him or not. Again she wondered if she would end up in worse trouble for being with Lady Scarlett, for going along with her in her escape, which seemed quite illegal now. Home, bed, the familiar and relatively safe, her mind wandered back there. But there was one huge problem, no money, and not enough food to get through the week. At least, even if she was arrested, they would probably give her food, so she wouldn't be all that worse off.

Scar sat next to her but didn't say more. Aliyah briefly thought of hiding, but decided against it. If she was found appearing to hide it would make her look like she must be guilty of something. Best to try to look like an ordinary passenger. Raegan worried her. There was something a bit wrong with the girl. She saw things that weren't there, and now she sat by Scar with a bow, saying she wouldn't let the soldiers end their quest. Aliyah wasn't even sure what kind of quest they were on, but it seemed all to possible to her for Raegan to do something foolish or dangerous if she was frightened. She closed her eyes, trying to stay calm.
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
Eldarion
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on: December 31, 2013 01:28
From the shadows emerged two well-armed guards, flanking from opposite ends of the boat. A third figure rounded the corner of several stacked crates and barrels with a hand straying to the blade at his hip. Their eyes narrowed upon Assur, the vessel's captain and newly enabled bowman, with obvious intention. The most lightly armored of the three advancing guardsmen spoke with authority that was already made quite evident. "I hereby requisition this boat in the name of Elessar, King of Gondor! My men and I require passage to Pelargir by the swiftest means."

Assur's stony expression did nothing to betray the curiosity bubbling beneath his facade; a trio of guards requisitioning his fishing yawl for Pelargir was unusual considering the number of finer, quicker vessels that were moored there. And what of Scarlett? There were wolves quite literally at their doorstep. He made a brief glance behind to see her slinking away into the darkness of the cabin, though the cloak did well to conceal her identity. His sweeping gaze surveyed the two guards prepared to draw blades before resting again on Khaloch.

He could not fathom any feasible option other than compliance. His lips contorted to a grimace. Allowing them aboard would disrupt their efforts for safety and only further complicate their journey southward. However, they brought their own sustenance and would be doing little to impose on his passengers as long as Scarlett could maintain her facade. It would certainly be an uncomfortable journey. Assur found himself mentally calculating the travel time to Pelargir.

Amidst the captain's musings Khaloch had doubled back to have a word with one of his men. "We should depart immediately for Pelargir, then!" came Assur's long-awaited response, waving a calloused hand towards the two men standing idly ashore. "Excuse me for a moment, messeres, as I must inform my passengers of this new addition." He made no effort to allow for reply with a purposeful stride carrying him down to the cabin to the awaiting group.

A sigh escaped his lips before he mustered an explanation. "Two guardsmen will be accompanying us southward. We make for Pelargir, per their demands. We've naught to do but comply until we reach the port city. Then, hopefully, we can continue of our own free will."

The ship was made ready for departure as Assur felt nothing but unease at their plight. Upon reaching open waters he sat himself at the bow and resumed his unfinished pipe.
Arveleg
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on: December 31, 2013 08:08
With a nod, Khaloch had some light provision brought forth and they boarded. The merchant went off to talk to his passengers. Khaloch looked to the south and east, and the dark thunderheads continued to build to the south along the west side of the Mountains of Shadow. For now they were still in the sun, and it was quite hot. Khaloch pointed to an open space toward the stern of the boat where they would use.

Khaloch said to the soldier who looked somewhat deflated,

"What is your name?"

"Why do you ask now?"


Khaloch stretched out his bedroll between some of the crates of wares to make a bit of shade, and said,

"I didn't need to know it until now."

The soldier sighed as he laid out his bedroll for them to sit on, saying,

"Banrast.... of Minas Tirith"

"Ok Banrast, we will be away some time. Like I said, I hope to get you back in time for your wedding. You will otherwise forget what you were told while with your old unit, and will from now on only hear me. Know that all I do is by order of your old commander, and why I do it is for my old commander. I may better explain things later when we approach Pelargir. Until we get back to Minas Tirith, you work directly for me. You understand this Banrast of Minas Tirith?"


Banrast gave a slight nod. Khaloch got up and said to him,

"You take a rest. I need to make amends with our ship's captain."

Khaloch walked toward the bow of the boat, and spotted the captain from the clouds of smoke that went up and back in the breeze. He stood back a ways and said to him,

"May you pardon my gruff insistence, but it appeared you were about to leave, and I needed to get to Pelargir at the earliest possible. Most other ships appeared to want to wait out the approaching storm clouds"

A dull rumble could be heard in the distance. It didn't seem to worry this man. Khaloch went on,

"I am Khaloch. I am in the employment of the Gondorian army and have urgent affairs to settle in Pelargir. Upon arrival, you will be compensated for our passage. Unfortunately it will only be the standard fee the army pays for requisition, which I know will not cover the trouble. We will remain on deck so as to not crowd your passengers in the cabin."

Khaloch looked out on the river where they were going. It was only days ago he had come north up this same river. One of the dark clouds lit up with lightning, and Khaloch could feel eyes upon him from the cabin doorway behind him. He did not turn, but he did take a deep breath.
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 31, 2013 09:58
Scarlett watched Aliyah and she was truly nervous, closing her eyes. She grabbed her hand and smiled.

“Do not worry, my friend. All shall end well.”

Then, Raegan walked there with a bow on her hand saying she would protect her. Scar almost gave a laugh for she was happy with that girl.

“Thank you, yet I assume it will not be necessary.”

Assur come in and told them all about the new passengers. Scarlett gave him her new name and remained in silence. She looked outside and saw Khaloch, not daring to look inside. Again, her chest was filled with anger, though she was, at the same time happy to see him. However, she wanted to see that man, who was travelling and offered her help.

The boat was moving and the journey began again. She wanted to go out there and ask him to explain himself, because she knew he had recognized her, but she couldn’t for the other soldier was still there.

Scarlett stood up and walked slowly to the doorway. That afternoon was really hot, but it would rain later, for sure. They were already far from the dock, since she only could distinguish a thin line on the horizon. She took a deep breath and went out, standing in the opposite direction of Assur, Khaloch and the soldier. That man, that soldier, seemed familiar to her, also. Some memories began to fill her mind and she quickly made it dissolve. She leaned on the side of the boat to look to the water, feeling the breeze on her face.
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findemaxam48
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on: December 31, 2013 04:40
Raegan sat awkwardly with Aliyah on the ship, staring blankly at the bow in ehr hand. She made a face and droppped it to the deck, pushing it away with her foot. She would be unable to shoot anyone, anyway.

A ghost stood on the deck, just left of Scar. Raegan stared at him with distrust in her eyes, but the ghost made no motion to harm any of them, though he was fully clad with weapons and armor.

Raegan stood up and went over to him. "Hello," She said, cautiously. "What's your name?"

Nothing. No move from the apparation. Raegan now saw that their new passengers were looking at her curiously. She ignored them, extending her hand for the ghost to see. "Im Raegan," She whispered.
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.
findemaxam48
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on: December 31, 2013 04:42
Raegan sat awkwardly with Aliyah on the ship, staring blankly at the bow in ehr hand. She made a face and droppped it to the deck, pushing it away with her foot. She would be unable to shoot anyone, anyway.

A ghost stood on the deck, just left of Scar. Raegan stared at him with distrust in her eyes, but the ghost made no motion to harm any of them, though he was fully clad with weapons and armor.

Raegan stood up and went over to him. "Hello," She said, cautiously. "What's your name?"

Nothing. No move from the apparation. Raegan now saw that their new passengers were looking at her curiously. She ignored them, extending her hand for the ghost to see. "Im Raegan," She whispered.
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: January 04, 2014 01:50
Fay saw Raegan hold out her hand. Surely a ghost could not shake hands?

This made her think. She had always thought that shaking a hand was strange, unnecessary. Perhaps this was how the tradition had begun, with one showing a hand so that they could be seen to be unarmed, and a stranger did not perceive their purpose. For that is how tradition is born, either by habits, or misunderstandings, or different interpretations.
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: January 10, 2014 05:51
Getting an acknowledging nod from the merchant captain, Khaloch gae a quick bow and turned. He made a note to try and compensate him a bit more if he could.

Khaloch's eyes saw a wisp of a cloak move around the bridge. Moving in a recently familiar way, yet he could not see who it was. Looking the other way, he could see that Banrast was fast asleep. The soldier had an easy assignment in Minas Tirith, and his excursion to Osgiliath was likely the extent of his travels. Yet Khaloch had to question how this day had gone, and now he had this man Banrast at his command, and they were off to Pelargir to do that which no other would do. He sighed at the orders Commander Seth had given him.

He found himself walking the deck the other way around the bridge as he looked into the door to the cabin. He paused turning his head when the hem of a familiar cloak rippled out into the sun. He blinked and looked hard, and the familiar cloak shielded grey eyes that seemed to shimmer. They peered out from the shadow just inside the door, while a dark lock of hair moved in the breeze. Tall clouds pushed up and northward, lighting up with lightning in them every few moments. It seemed the distant flashes caused the grey eyes to flicker with light. Khaloch wished not to stare, but he had not ever seen one of the Eldar before. He only heard the tales the northern soldiers spoke of when they were in the deeps of Harad. Khaloch blinked and there was only shadow in the doorway. He took his next step and walked toward the shadowy cloak that stood by the rail on the side of the ship.

His approach was noted by the one in the cloak, but they did not turn. They kept watching the building cloud filled with lightning. Khaloch stepped to the rail and watched the cloud. The two were silent for several moments, until Khaloch said,

"A heavy summer storm, much like yesterday. Yet this one coming has severe wrath in it."

He looked sidelong at the shadowy cloaked woman. He breathed in a familiar scent. He sighed a long breath and kept looking out at the cloud. He said in a whisper,

"My apologies Lady Scarlett... Miss Scar. It appears our paths cross once again."

His mind remembered the parting they had the day before in Osgiliath. He was a free man heading north then. Now, it was as if he had never left the army.
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.
HuldahMaria
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on: January 11, 2014 09:58
Aliyah watched Raegan greet an invisible person. She didn't say anything because she didn't want to upset her, but she did not want the other soldiers to see that. Mental instability was rarely met with compassion.

Scar had gone up on deck. There was a storm coming, Aliyah could feel it in the air. She wondered what was happening up there, Khaloch might do anything for all she knew, would he bring her back to those that were seeking her? She wondered what must have been going on in Scar's past that would lead her to do all this, just to get away from home. Aliyah, having nothing left, struggled to understand why someone who has a home, food and something to do would want to leave, unless something terrible was happening to them there.
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
Ella
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on: January 13, 2014 04:22
The water was still calm as the ship passed through, though it wouldn’t be like that soon. Someone was approaching Scarlett and she could guess who it was before he spoke. When he began speaking, she almost could have laughed thinking how could he have the courage to walk there to talk about the weather. She silently took a deep breath, never taking her eyes of the water and the approaching clouds.

"My apologies Lady Scarlett... Miss Scar. It appears our paths cross once again."

The last words echoed in her head before she could say anything. Deep down she was happy to see him again. However, many questions filled her mind. She was wary about that man who appeared to want to help her once, and when she thought she had made him get arrested, he returned, with a soldier.

“I am Alura now.”

She paused, thinking if it was worth to say anything to him. Rage was again in her heart and she tightened her fists and wondered if any of those questions where worth asking.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were working to King Elessar? Or maybe to Captain Seth himself… Why did you bring that man here? Why Banrast?”

She knew that soldier and finally remembered his name. She spent months taking care of him at the Houses of Healing because of conflicts in South. And that man, even if he never did anything to harm her, brought her memories she passed the last years trying to forget.

“Why don’t you just take me to Minas Tirith again and spare these people of suffering?”

She had spent the last day wishing his return and now she didn’t know what to do. She was too disappointed. Then, she turned to him and pierced her eyes right into his, feeling something growing warmer in her heart, and her voice which was cold until now, turned more like a wish of a child to know what happened.

“Why, Khaloch?”
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findemaxam48
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on: January 13, 2014 02:28
Raegan shifted her eyes away from her ghost, and saw that Khaloch and Lady Scar were speaking. She once again quickly adverted her eyes, thinking that they wanted privacy. But when she looked back to her ghost, he was gone.

Disappointed, Raegan stepped away from the rail towards Aliyah, who had been watching her with interest. "I like to talk to them," She explained. "You see, Im looking for my father, who's one of them, and I like to ask if they had seen him. You know. Where ghosts meet." The words kept spilling out. "And I think they like to talk to me, too." She dropped her voice a little lower. "And I think that Lady Scar- I mean, Alura, thinks my father is...you know...alive. But, i fear that if she learns the truth, she will make me leave. That's why I came on this journey. I wanted to find my father."
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.
HuldahMaria
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on: January 14, 2014 07:26
Aliyah wasn't sure how to answer Raegan. Her whole world of ghosts was so real to her, she couldn't possibly believe they were any less real than the tangible world. "It is probably best if you don't speak to them when others are around. Not everyone believes in ghosts and some of them are likely to overlook the rest of your qualities if they see you talking to things they can't see."
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: January 14, 2014 02:25
"It is probably best if you don't speak to them when others are around. Not everyone believes in ghosts and some of them are likely to overlook the rest of your qualities if they see you talking to things they can't see," Aliyah said.


Raegan nodded her head. "That is what my Auntie told me, back home," She said slowly. "But I cannot not speak to them. I am used to the stares and glances when I speak, to a ghost or otherwise. It does feel odd, but, I suppose that it is just how my life will be."
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: January 18, 2014 04:16
Khaloch was stunned at her words. He had only shown her kindness and even helped her defy those of the realm who searched for her. This came at a great cost to himself, for he was now again in the armed service of Gondor. Had he turned his back on her in Osgiliath, he would still be a free man to journey north and west. Now, he was heading back to the city of his birth with some soldier he took to aid him to do that which is supposedly is sanctioned by King Elessar himself. Yet fate had put him on the very boat she had taken to escape Osgiliath, and she blames him now. He said in a low breath to her,

"My path in life has only for a short few recent weeks have been that which I choose. The rest has been chosen for me as I take the road that allows me to live. Much like you in a way, though the circumstances are quite different. In some ways we are the same, yet are so different in our days. You now are free to go where you wish, and that freedom was bought in a moment that has taken that choice from me. Cherish it well, Lady Alura, for it was dearly bought."

He looked out at the darkening clouds before them. He then said without looking back at Lady Scarlett... Alura,

"The hows and whys if my service now is the price paid by me. I have met Captain Seth, and though his Lady Stella was down with the illness that seems to be spreading, he seemed to care more of this mission than for her. I believe it was your mother, for she called for Scarlett in her delirium. Yet he seemed only slightly concerned by her illness, and your disappearance. He was confident you would be caught and caged once again."

He turned to her and looked her in the eyes, a hand on each of her shoulders. he said,

"I have not come here, or brought this soldier here to cause you or anyone on this boat grief. We are just passing to Pelargir. Your secret is safe with me. As for Banarast, and how you know him, I cannot say. May your path be well, Lady Alura."

Khaloch started to turn way. There was so much more he wished to say, but he did not know how to say it. He took a breath and looked south as a bolt of lightning jumped from the high dark cloud. The boom of thunder would be forthcoming.
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: January 18, 2014 03:18
Assur's stony expression did not change as he sat deep in ruminations, puffing gentle wisps of smoke into the southerly breeze. In the distance, dark concentrations of nimbus clouds signaled the oncoming storm that had already made it's presence known by the teeth-chattering rumbles that boomed far in the distance. The careworn sailor eyed them with an impassive gaze; he had seen many storms on the river as inclement weather was quite common this far south in Middle-earth. A few distant bursts of lightning illuminated an otherwise abyssal sky as the oncoming front was pulled along, destined to intersect their path.

His calloused thumb snuffed the smoldering embers in his oak pipe just as the towering figure of Khaloch emerged around a stack of crates tied down tightly. Assur stood, unsure of his intentions and rather taken aback by the apology. "It is of no consequence. Our course was to take us to Pelargir nonetheless. And I'm sure my original passengers will appreciate the courtesy of your men staying on deck. They will also enjoy being dry," came his brief reply as the two men, quite equal in stature, glanced at the coming storm front.

As Assur made ready with a few adjustments to the sails, tightening them down with expertly tied knots to weather the storm, his charges mingled and, unbeknownst to him, made contact with a once lost party. His trained steel hues did not miss Khaloch's interaction with Lady Scarlett, though he was quite ignorant of their past. Her being the daughter of a Captain of Gondor and Khaloch's position in the military was the only obvious connection he could make.

A raucous series of thunderbolts brought a sudden end to his musings just as a torrent of rain began to pour down on their vessel, rendering he and all on the deck soaked within mere seconds. It was a storm of cyclopean proportions, one like the South had rarely seen. Assur found himself double checking his knots as the ropes strained to hold the sails to masts in the fierce winds. The vessel was tossed gently from wave to wave, the Anduin churning in rage. He maintained their course, however. Minor adjustments ensured they kept far from either shore and a steady grip on the rudder weaved them between the larger swells of the river. Rain continued to fall heavily as dark clouds rumbled overhead and lighting struck incessantly. The wind continued to howl. His weathered stained hood and cloak did little to protect him from the gales freezing his soaked frame. It was a thoroughly unpleasant journey for the last length of the river to Pelargir.

Assur was bordering on exhaustion when the winds began to calm, the rain slowed it's downpour, and the darker portions of the sky shifted south-westerly. They came soon into hilly country on their eastern front, Emyn Arnen. Deep forests crowning these hills and ruins peeking above the canopies. Wide plains stretched out before them south of the White Mountains to the West, split only by the South Road which lead alongside Anduin to their destination which could be seen as their vessel emerged into a flatter portion of country, the port city of Pelargir stained red and gold in the evening sun.

Moorings of stone arranged in wide, angular shapes surrounded a massive island teeming with markets, an ominous watchtower looming above all in the center of the port with the greater portion of the city sprawling from the canals and onto the mainland. Assur sailed smoothly into one of the nearest docks, fastening the vessel with an aged rope onto a thickly hewn pedestal of stone. He descended to the cabin to his passengers, still relatively moist from the storm. "We have arrived in Pelargir."

[Edited on 01/19/2014 by Eldarion]
Ella
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on: January 19, 2014 04:45
A storm was forming, and Scarlett’s eyes were fixed on the dark clouds. Deep inside her heart, she wanted just to hold his hand and smile, but the feeling of betrayal still remained. However, she noticed how his expression grew quite disappointed and when he began speaking, guilty replaced her anger. Khaloch didn’t look at her as he told her how he paid his freedom to get hers. She was confused. How was it possible?

When she heard about her father and the illness of her mother she froze. She wanted to ask about them as a regretful feeling began to grow. And how was it possible that her father didn’t care much about Stella and her daughter? It was all her fault. Now, she wished she never left home.

All her thoughts were interrupted when Khaloch looked at her with his hands on her shoulders. She had been listening everything quietly; and understood how childish of her it was to run away. As she understood he wanted to leave the group she felt terrible. Her eyes overflowed with tears and her cheeks were slightly red with shame. He had done everything he could to protect her and she misunderstood him.

While he turned to walk away a lightning stroke on the horizon and she could hear the thunder approaching. She looked at him, almost crying. Scar couldn’t just let him go without saying anything. She grabbed his hand, turning him to her. Only a few inches separated each other and she pierced right into his eyes.

“I am sorry. I just… You have always protected me and I am… just a selfish child.” The last words were nothing more than a whisper.

She looked down as it started to rain heavily. They were arriving. The woman wanted to hold him in her arms or give him a light kiss on his face, yet she felt she hadn’t the right to do it.
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on: January 19, 2014 05:06
Raegan jumped as she heard the thunder, and the scent in the air hinted of a coming storm. Would their vessal be over turned in the feirce wind and waves, if they came with a vengence?

Terror came to her heart. She knew she hadn't the strength to swim in harsh waters, and she doubted that Aliyah or Freya could, either. This was one such circumstance where life had to come before privacy.

Raegan brushed by Aliyah and went over to Lady Scar and Khaloch. She nearly stopped short when she saw that "Alura" held Khaloch's hand. She hadn't suspected that there was anything between the two of them, and yet, ehre they were. But Lady Scar looked like she wanted to be crying, and Khaloch looked rather impassive.

Raegan forced herself to continue. "Lady- Alura," She said, quickly correcting herself at the last moment, although she doubted that anyone could hear her over the gales. "I fear for our safekt. Should another storm come, what should we do?"
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.
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on: January 20, 2014 08:37
Pelargir. Aliyah knew very little of this place. She wondered what they might find here. Most importantly she hoped they had escaped the plague that had come to Osgiliath as they were leaving. Scar (Alura) was talking to Khaloch again. It seemed like there was something going on between them. Aliyah had no personal experience with romance, but she was quite perceptive, and this development intrigued her. She kept her eye on Raegan as well. She wanted to protect her as the girl seemed rather unable to truly take care of herself and Scar was now distracted with a new interest.
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
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on: January 21, 2014 01:21
Fay heard the crack of thunder, and ran to the boat rail to look out for the flashes of lightning. She loved storms, although she did usually watch them from the safety of her house. She loved the way that the rain washed away the dust and bits of rubbish, sweeping away the old and leaving the streets clean. The air always seemed to fresh after a storm, like a new beginning. The rail was starting to slip in her hands, so she clung on with her whole arms, like a young child.
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.
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on: January 21, 2014 03:17
Raegan saw Freya out of the corner of her eye as she ran to the rail of the ship. "Be careful!" She called out to Freya. She saw what was coming, and didn't want her friend to be close to the rail when it came. "Freya! The sea! The waves! Watch out!"

Rain pelted Raegan's face and casued her to stumble back to Aliyah.
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: January 26, 2014 01:03
“I am sorry. I just… You have always protected me and I am… just a selfish child.”

Kha;och took a deep breath as the first of the raindrops started pelting them. He turned back to Alura. The rain started to fall harder, and he could not tell if the wetness on her cheeks was her tears or not. It didn't matter. He brushed away some drops that ran down one of her cheeks and said,

"Lady Alura, you are a woman setting out on an adventure of a lifetime. There is nothing selfish in that. Where that path leads you no one knows. Though its only been a couple days, I have grown close to you, much closer than I deserve and much closer than you would likely wish. You have friends here with you. And I still call it an honour to even be considered such by you."

He looked deep in her eyes and gave her an embrace as the storm raged and soaked them both. The boat rocked hard as the tidal surge driven by the wind met the river current. They would be in Pelargir soon, and he would have to see to his mission. Yet he was curious what Lady Alura would do upon arrival. Banarast would be with him and she had some history with him. Khaloch was unsure about him ever since their chance encounter in the tavern by the Osgiliath markets. But if she had consideration to accompany him, then she would have to confront Banarast, who himself did not know what he was in for. Khaloch thought too much about it as the rains poured down. But with the passing of the storm, they were swiftly carried down river to Pelargir.

"We have arrived."

The captain called out. Khaloch checked his knife. Could use a sharpen, but it would have to do. He took a breath as he prepared to set foot once again in the city of his birth.
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.
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on: January 30, 2014 12:54
The roaring gales had lessened to docile breezes and the evening sun flamed brightly on the western horizon, far beyond the edge of the White Mountains and across the Great Sea. The gold and crimson hues reflected brightly in Assur's steely eyes as he gazed across the vast plains that surrounded the city of Pelargir. They were peaceful. Unfortunately, his path contained no such peace.

With the ship properly moored, Assur spanned the plank across the gap between vessel and dock with a sense of finality. The action always relieved him. He strolled lightly onto the pier and awaited his companions. His bow was slung securely over his shoulder with the small quiver containing a meager handful of arrows doing little to encumber him. A large dagger was sheathed at his belt, underneath the hooded cloak. Assur was prepared for Pelargir.

---

Through subversive methods, Merenor was able to secure his passage to the ports of Minas Tirith. A man with coin was a man with options. The same coin loosened lips and set tongues a wagging in the various stalls of the port, including one merchant who claimed to have sold supplies to a man fitting the captain's descriptions. It was simple to discern their next stop with Pelargir being the only stop before the Great Sea...
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