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A World of Chaos and Shadows
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Kaelyn DeAuster
Young Wyrm
Young Wyrm

Joined: 28 May 2006
Posts: 37
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Jobs: Herbalist, Apothecary
Can Be Found: Usually found in the Lands near Gharnholme or RhyDin
3633.60 Silver Crowns


PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 2:14 pm    Post subject: A World of Chaos and Shadows Reply with quote

Placing the last of her meager belongings into the small bag she packed, she glanced around at the tattered elegance of the room that was once her own. Perhaps she should just be glad her father had managed to get one last big win before he up and died. At least she didn’t have furious creditors hounding her at all hours. All that was left was a very small amount of coin but every last debt had been paid off. She was now going to join her sister.

In truth she was worried. What would she find when she arrived? Last she knew, her father had given her sister away to one holding a marker for some gambling disaster when she was much younger. At the time she hadn’t understood any of it, only that her father could continue to squander what little they had left on some foolish idea that he would score a big win eventually. It had come, but quite nearly to late and it had hardly been enough to pay every obligation left. Perhaps it was a blessing his body had just given up finally.

Her gaze slid towards the small wooden chest on the table and grew somber. It had only arrived two nights ago with a note about where she was to travel and meet various connections. Inside was more coin then Kaelyn had ever seen in her whole life and she rather feared it. What would happen if she used it? Would she end up wearing some stranger’s collar as her sister had? Nose crinkling some, she pondered that as she pulled the heavy cloak around her nearly wispy thin frame. The dark folds showed signs of age, but also the mark of a careful needle, for the repairs had been done with great care.

In the dark hall she pulled on the hated boots and trod to the door. She had no choice but to leave. The one that now owned the old place would soon arrive to take up his new title and a pitifully poor cousin wasn’t part of that inheritance. A fact made quite clear to her. After her father had simply given Myri away to pay for his wasteful wagers, shame had settled upon their name and it now stained her with the same dark color. She did have a small annual income from her mother’s family, but it was not even near enough to sustain her in a hellhole. It was true she had other options, but none of them held a single ounce of appeal. She would not accept the insulting propositions she had been given. She might be poor, but she had some pride after all. If even one of them had been slightly appealing to her, she might of considered it, but the only ones seeking to take advantage of her current situation seemed to lean more towards the pig family then even she could stand.

Outside the sound of wheels coming down the cobbled road sent her out the door without a backwards glance. She could no longer call the house home and a part of her was more then glad to leave it behind.

She was startled to find she was the only traveler on this carriage but quietly let the driver help her inside where she settled, huddling into the heavy warmth of the old cloak. The air was cold and damp this day and reflected her mood perfectly. She had no idea what she would find when she arrived at this Gharnholme place, but bolstered herself up with the thought she could talk her way out of just about anything. She had learned that art when dodging creditors and was confident in those abilities. She was also a decent healer and knew the Herbal arts almost as well as her sister had. She might have something useful in which to barter.

Aside from that, she had re-read the few letters she had gotten from her missing sibling. None of them even spoke of Myri’s status or even the horror of what she was, but offered glowing tales of humor and adventure. She was sure her sister was sending her a very exaggerated view of her new home and those she now served, for if it was true, Kaelyn was going to be out of her element and at a severe loss. Breathing shadows, ghosts, demons, Vampires, Orcs in War Bands and little mischievous lizards things called Frik and Frak was something she had only read about in frivolous books, she wasn’t at all sure she could face such things and stay on her feet if they were real.

Knowing her sister, she was fairly certain it wasn’t as bright and peaceful as Myri sought to convey. Her softhearted sister was trying to make her believe everything was fine and that she was happier where she had been taken. It would be normal enough and her way of easing her sudden departure. However, now she was to join her, she fretted. What would happen? That question was plaguing with every mile that passed.

Soon the sun would be down and they would stop. She had tried to change out the tickets, but had been refused. Her idea was to find a less expensive mode of travel, but apparently who ever had made the plans made sure such a thing wouldn’t happen. It was yet another confusing thing for Kaelyn to struggle and comprehend.

Here she was, a young woman of twenty seasons feeling like a lost child. It was an annoying sensation, but she couldn’t shake it off. So many things happened at once now. Fate had finally given her father that dream, but in a matter of days he was lowered into the family crypt and now she was off to the unknown and feeling like a floundering fish on the shoreline.

So many things she would have to learn to adjust to. The time differences, for Myri had said in one of her missives that time passed differently where she was. What ever that meant still left Kae feeling a bit baffled. The place was also hard to get to by all accounts, and in a realm she was totally unfamiliar with, but did know they at least spoke common.

Feeling the carriage rolling to a slow stop, she tucked a few wandering strands of red hair back over the light point of her ear and leaned to peer out. A barge stood before the flustered horses, balking at loading onto the rocking structure. She imagined this was what her sister had also seen, so many seasons back. She decided to not touch any of the money sent, for it was likely from her sister’s master and if she used much, she would be beholding to him and could end up wearing a collar. Her hand moved then, touching her bare neck and she swallowed. It wasn’t much, but if she had most of it to return, she might be able to talk herself out of such a fate.
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Kaelyn DeAuster
Young Wyrm
Young Wyrm

Joined: 28 May 2006
Posts: 37
See this user's pet
Jobs: Herbalist, Apothecary
Can Be Found: Usually found in the Lands near Gharnholme or RhyDin
3633.60 Silver Crowns


PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 2:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was on the third leg of her journey when she found herself in the company of a few others. The stories of war and talk of distant battles taking up much of the conversation, talk she couldn’t offer any insight into. One stuffy man was speaking about some Chaos Lord having gone off his rocker and was laying waste to the landside to the north. This news sat poorly with the tired young woman, as that was the direction she was headed, but when asked what more he knew, he was unable to fill her in.

She had handled the crossing of that thing they called a Nexus Portal well enough, though it had left her head aching quite dreadfully for a few days. Now, it was just a small dull throb. Her traveling companions were all involved in their war stories all of which were about death and destruction or worse. That Chaos Lord had quite an appetite according to those here as their tails grew into rumor and gossip. Tales of young woman forced into slavery and young able bodied men into serving his hunger for land. Pillaging and plundering was all part of war, this Kaelyn knew, but she had never had to see it personally and could only hope she wasn’t caught in the middle of one of these battles before she reached her sister.

“That DeAuster has some nerve after all. Lord Uveran simply insulted his wife, it was hardly a personal comment to him.” Stuffy stated with a sniff into his handkerchief.
“If ye be asking me, he shouldn’t have done that anyway. I hear the wife is even worse then Lord DeAuster. One lady friend of mine said she used to be an “assassin” of all things.” Typical of most prude old bats, the lady’s voice dropped to a near whisper when she said assassin.

It was at this point Kaelyn’s blood was running cold and chilled. “DeAuster? Oh dear me.” She thought, but refused to say anything. She had no answers and suspected these people would look at her with horror. Myri’s fairytales had certainly not prepared her for this.

“I hear their children are just as blood thirsty too. There be some talk about that son of his running off and playing Gladiator, and that daughter, she’s something of a wild child. Running crazy all over the country side so I have heard.” More gossip spilling from the two dominant members of the carriage party, only she and the other fellow, one stoic looking man remained silent. He simply stared out the window and brooded.

“The sins of the father are revisited upon the children after all. Unnatural I say. Heathens, the lot of them.”

It as then the stone quiet fellow finally spoke up and did so with a chilly flick of his eyes over the other two. “Perhaps that is true, but when it finally ends, the DeAuster’s will be the dominant power on this continent.” He paused for a moment and a smirk drew up on his face as he leaned back with arms folding. “AND, have the power to keep it.”

The hatchet-faced woman sniffed and lifted her head, peering down the length of her nose at the stern looking fellow. “And what would you know of it eh? Who might you be to have such confidence?”

Again the man’s lips twisted into a bland cold smile. “The name is Lord Leiance De’Cort, of the regent’s land Malirid.”

Kaelyn had no clue what that meant, but assumed it was impressive, if the looks on the two magpies was any clue. Both looked at him in total shock and fell into a very uncomfortable silence. She did wonder why, if he was so important, why was he traveling by coach a question she had, but didn’t even think to ask at the moment.

Instead, listened with some interest when the rigid woman spoke up. “ If that were true, you would hardly be using such a conveyance.”

“Ah, it’s true enough.” A hand gestured down to a bandaged leg. “Can’t ride a horse in this condition and can’t drive my own rig either, as horseback is the usual mode of transportation I prefer. Due to the current storms in the far north, my own carriage has not been able to get through so here I am.”

“Do you support this barbaric campaign of DeAuster’s, Lord De’Cort?” Sputtering some with his question, Stuffy heaved himself forward before resting and wheezing so heavily, Kaelyn pulled her cloak up over her soft mouth to ensure she didn’t catch anything.

“I do, in fact, I might join his crusade and commit my own troops. It’s about damn time someone took on those soft, cowardly fops and wastes of human refuse that call themselves nobility and forced them into line.” The silent young woman gaped behind her fabric covering at the stone cold blue eyes that settled upon the pompous porky.

“Care to make something of it?” Those words alone made her shiver and sink deeper into her spot. She was relieved it wasn’t her getting that look at least.

Her fear was rising as well. If that one was any indication of the sort of master her sister had, he might not take to well to her unfortunate curse of temper or her often called sassy tongue. She would have to be very careful, very, very careful indeed. There would end up being a lot of verbally abused trees around the place. Since she would simply have to find something to yell at eventually.

“Milady? Where is your destination?” The tone was suddenly affable and she blinked, blue eyes lifting to gaze at the slightly spooky man in some surprise.

“Ah, um, Cisroe Milord. I am to take another carriage that will take me to my sister.” She wasn’t about to say Gharnholme, as the other pair just might haul her out and string her right up for she had no fancy title to protect her with.

“Then we shall be continuing on together past Hartridge.” A glint danced in his dark eyes, relieving of her sudden worry at the thought. “Unlike our other companion’s here.” She heard a note of relief in the nobleman’s voice, a feeling she shared and actually smiled for a moment.
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Leiance DeCort

Joined: 17 May 2006
Posts: 10
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Jobs: Falconer, Bullet Catcher
Can Be Found: Cyprien Drathwar of Malarid usually but is known for traveling around.
1066.22 Silver Crowns


PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The next few hours were littered with stilted conversations, resentful looks and tension until the steepled walls of the city rose ahead, the rain damp streets gleaming dully in the midday sun. A few more hours and they would arrive in the capital city of Cisroe and find rest at an Inn already arranged for her. She was looking forward to resting some and perhaps even cleaning up. Though the trip had not been difficult as everything was already taken care of, it had still been exhausting and she was quite hungry and tried from all of it.

In what she thought was a rather rapid fashion, the driver deposited the annoying pair in front of one of the many Inns lining Cisroe’s main street and had the carriage moving mere minutes afterward. She could only assume he had been listening from his perch and was aware of an impending battle if he didn’t hurry.

“That is a relief. Such people send my blood to boiling I’m afraid. I do hope I did not upset ye Milady.” Now with only two left, he was able to stretch out long legs and ease his injured leg.

“No Milord, ye didn’t upset me at all.” She hadn’t any idea what they would talk about for the next few hours and hoped she didn’t anger him. He seemed the sort that it likely took little to set him off.

“How, um, what happened to your leg Milord, if I am not being to bold to ask?” Her gaze moving towards the bandages with a slight frown, for they were rather sloppy to her expert eye.

“A duel. Some rude lazy foppish prig insulted my Fiancée so I killed him.” Stated in a matter of fact fashion that said more about it’s truth. “Would ye call that an impulsive act?”

“I would call it a fitting end to a pig personally.” Her gaze continued back to his damaged leg and she shifted, feeling the urge to ease the pain she could sense in the air.

“Would ye please push that cowl back from your face. I hate talking to shadows.” And edge in his voice made her respond and do as he asked and she smiled tentatively.

“I do have some healing skills. If your not adverse, I can take a look at your wound and perhaps help with the pain.” She had no other choice but to ask. She knew he was in pain for it was giving her another piercing headache.

He shot her a look, and then grunted some before heaving his leg up on the seat next to her small frame. “If ye care to try I am not adverse. Bastion is a mostly human city and has little to no healers about, unlike Rysandri. Unfortunately a standard doctor meaning in simple terms, a bumbling fool, tended this. As I wanted to keep my leg intact, I felt that heading home was best else I would have remained until spring thaw.

Reaching for her own small bag, she removed a leather bundle from it and placed it to the side, then set about removing the bandage and making noises of disgust at what she found. “I think ye be correct. This is becoming septic.” A dark thread was already moving up his leg from the deep puckering gash that had not healed any. She wasn’t an expert, but she was also sure some form of poison was also used for the look of it was far from natural.

“When did this happen Milord?” Dark indigo blue eyes lifting with an expression of concern.

“About five days ago.” This said with a wince, that sent another pang flying about her head and she blinked, blinded momentarily.

“I see. Well, let me see what I might do about this.” Drawing out a number of herbs, she carefully blended them into a crisp clean cloth and pure boiled water she carried in a flask and carefully cleaned the injury with careful hands that offered delicate pressure. Softly uttered words of a language he wouldn’t understand, and slowly the damage started to fade, with the infection seeping out of his skin and into a waiting rag.

“Do ye have a lighting flint? I seem to have misplaced mine.” She asked as she hunted through her healing bundle and glanced over at him and her eyes widened.

“Your Elvin Milady?” He was looking at her with some surprise and grateful appreciation.

“Sort of Milord. Half Druid, a quarter Elvin and a smidgeon human I think. Not really sure about the human part. Having never seen a single one in the family line for several seasons.” Giving a serene smile as she took the offered light and set the cloth a blaze and before it could burn her fingers, she dropped it out the carriage window where it was already mere ashes before even touching the ground.

“Druid? Didn’t even know there was any here on Kaylieth. Where do ye hail from Milady?” Suddenly curious, he sat up and looked down at his leg in surprise, realizing the pain was nearly non-existent now.

“A place quite far away, in a different realm called Frasian.” Another smile touched her pale features as she returned her belongings to her bag and settled back into her seat with relief. The headache was quite nearly gone now.

“Ah, I have heard of it. Never been, but I tend to dislike Inter-dimensional travel.” He nodded then leaned to inspect his leg with curious fingers. “Ye do very good work Milady.”

“Thank ye very much. I was taught well by my sister many seasons back. She learned from our mother before she passed on.” She said it in an offhanded fashion, for it was simply part of her nature and she didn’t require thanks or compliments for it.

“Where will ye go once you reach Cisreo?” This one was suddenly full of questions and she glanced over at him, one thin brow twitching some.

“To my sister. She is living somewhere in the wastes with a noble family.” She hoped she hadn’t given to much information, as she was still very uncertain about wanting to be connected with the DeAusters.

“Ah, so ye be going to Gharnholme.” He lifted his arms and rested hands to the back of his neck and leaned back with a dry smile.

“Aye.” She knew there was little use in denying it.

“Don’t look so glum Milady. Ignore those prattling fools from earlier. It is true the family is very warlike, but hardly barbarians. In fact, they are likely more civilized then many of other clans in the realms of Tarimar. If ye go there now for protection and shelter, ye are in one of the safest places of the entire realm.”

She did find some solace from those words, but still felt nervous. His reassurance did little to assuage that either. She knew that Lord DeAuster did enslave, as her sister was proof enough of that. “He is a slaver isn’t he?”

“Of course. Many nobles here are. But I doubt you have to fear that. Your skills are good and as your going there of ye own free will, it’s unlikely ye will end up in some collar.” He smiled then one of those smooth, slick oily smiles she didn’t trust one little bit and her eyes narrowed a tad.

“Tell you what, should he slap a collar on your neck, I will buy you from him.” That smile deepened and she felt her temper flare and send a dark flush into her uncommonly pale cheeks.

“That is NAE funny Milord.” Waspishly snapping with a look from her eyes that shot sparks.

“Well, it is a good plan. If he does enslave ye, I will rescue ye and ye can work off the collar as a healer for my own troops.”

“Lets just hope your right about what ye said first. I don’t think I would make a very good slave Milord. I get very moody.” She tried to keep that edge of anger out of her voice, but it still held a tremor that she heard and wanted to just stomp her feet at that weakness.

“I don’t know. He might. I can’t say I know DeAuster very well, but I know enough that he doesn’t usually enslave guests unless they ask. However, if it does happen, I will make sure to purchase you from him.” He seemed to be enjoying her struggle to contain what was obviously a flash fire temper. His gaze moving down to look at tightly balled hands.
Only to aware he was enjoying unsettling her, she took deep even breaths and counted from 20 backwards a half a dozen times before getting a hold of it and sank back into her seat with a snort. “I’d run away.”

A bark of laugher was his instant response and he shook his head. “Doesn’t work that way. Collars are funny things. One can’t take a slave unless rightfully purchased. A runaway can be called back with a snap of fingers. For one obviously worried about such a thing, ye be sadly ignorant. If ye fear this, why go there?”

“I nae have anywhere else to go.” Said through clenched teeth, she again started her calming count.

“Ye can always find someone to take care of you. Ye be pretty enough in that underfed, skinny way so many find fashionable.” Dark eyes gleaming wickedly now and watching every flicker of expression that danced over her animated face.

Rationally she knew he had no way of knowing just how she was built, having been well covered in the enveloping cloak, but she still felt affronted at that statement and sniffed in annoyance. “I had offers like that and I turned them down thank ye. Hardly a decent way of life and poor I might be, I was still raised with morals.”

“Young lady, ye are going to need to grow a thicker skin.” Said with a rising of a brow and a smirk. “I have seen DeAuster’s son send his sister into a rage so swiftly one could think the youth was a professional tease. He’s going to pick on you for the mere fact you react. Heed those words. Not only that, throw a tantrum in front of the Lord himself and he will toss ye into one of his cages same as he would his own kin if they acted irrationally.”

“I thought ye said ye didn’t know him!” She was controlling the urge with surprising proficiency and was almost pleased with herself, as she didn’t like being so quick to react either. She honestly considered it one of her curses and fought to bury it, but had never once thrown a “tantrum” as he was thinking.

“Oh, I don’t, but I know how I would be.” A light shrug and he leaned back into his seat. “Believe it or not, temper can be beaten out of one. A proven fact, and if that method fails, death does the trick.”

Now that had her eyes widening and she swallowed fast. She would certain contain that overly volatile nature at all costs, since the idea of a beating or being killed for it wasn’t at all appealing.

“I would offer ye a job right now if I didn’t think DeAuster would find that an insult to his hospitality. One doesn’t meddle in the ways of family and if ye sister is one of his house, that makes you also.” Faint was the smile, but it was sincere enough for her to recognize the wisdom in his words.

“My sister is a slave with his house.” Nose crinkling slightly, as she hadn’t meant to say that out loud.

Surprise moved once more over his face and he looked puzzled for a moment. “That’s odd. How long has she been there?”

Forgetting about the time differences, she gave him the term she had counted. ”About seven seasons.”

“Most odd. I had heard he had just returned to the practice but only recently, as he had stopped for some time. Ah well, it’s still unlikely he would collar ye after offering you a place to go. Wild as he might be, he’s not without some honor.”

Soon enough the talk turned to easier conversations that passed the time until the dark gates of Cisroe rose up in the darkening sky with the lights glittering like stars along the parapets. In less time then expected Lord De’Cort who smiled easily was helping her down from the carriage.

“This be the end of ye journey for now young miss. Stop fretting and enjoy the adventure. Soon enough ye will be reunited with your sister and realize all that worry was for nothing.”

“I do hope ye be right about that Milord.” Still, the unknown was a hard pill to swallow and right now, she wasn’t sure she was going to choke on it yet.

“I shall see ye again Milady Kaelyn. My travels continue but with the healing of my leg, I can now do so in a more comfortable manner. It has been a pleasure.” He bowed over her hand in a very proper and polite fashion she could only stare at him in surprise.

Shaking herself from her awe, she smiled quietly and nodded with a perfectly executed curtsey. “It was a pleasure meeting ye as well Milord De’Cort, May the Lord and Lady of spirit guide ye.”

With that said, he limped away into the gloomy shadows of the street heading deeper into the large city and Kaelyn was drawn into the warmth and comfort of the Inn by a smiling woman, her voice carrying loud enough to be heard some distance away. “We have been expecting ye. Received word from the House and will get ye well rested for tomorrow Milady.”
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Kaelyn DeAuster
Young Wyrm
Young Wyrm

Joined: 28 May 2006
Posts: 37
See this user's pet
Jobs: Herbalist, Apothecary
Can Be Found: Usually found in the Lands near Gharnholme or RhyDin
3633.60 Silver Crowns


PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After a hearty meal, a long soaking bath and one of the deepest sleeps she had experienced in a great while, she woke a few moments before the sun. Rising she dressed quickly in the chilly room and moved to gaze out the window. The array of colors painted the sky before her in various tones of red and gold that made her smile.

Inside a battle waged. One of worry and concern and the other of delight that she would soon be once again with her sister. She admitted she knew nothing about what she might face, but now, she couldn’t turn back. It was simply too late for that. Offering a faint sigh, she turned back and collected her few belongings and took a few moments to braid her long light red locks into one long tight braid. Patting a few wandering strands into place, she took a deep steadying breath and headed down the stairs to the common room.

There she was instantly greeted with warm smiles and pushed into a seat where the Inn Keepers wife served her. “Ye be needing some meat on those bones Lassie. Been a cold winter here and likely to turn more bitter so ye be needing something to burn in that little frame ye got.”

She could only stare in surprise at the amount of food the woman wanted her to consume. She hadn’t ever seen this much on one table that she could remember and the thought of putting that into her system nearly made her ill. However, she had been raised to be polite and gave it her best shot. She ate until she felt sure she would burst at the seams and still the lady made those disapproving noises but still smiled warmly.

She had no idea how long she would wait for her ride to arrive, but she wouldn’t be hungry for a few days at least. This being her thought as a chilling wind blew in the door as it opened and an armored clad man stood silently there for moment, then walked to the bar. “Is the lady here?”

“Indeed. She be right over there and ready to go Sir.” The Innkeeper gestured towards Kaelyn who was already rising and pulling on her heavy cloak. Before she could even reach for her traveling bag, the man caught it up in a large glove encased hand. “This way Miss.”

Offering a quick but sincere thank you to the couple running the small Inn, she hurried after the tall heavily covered man in a flurry of cloak folds and colorful skirts. She then found herself lifted up and tossed right into the carriage. This one hadn’t offered a hand, simply moved with proficiency that was unsettling.

Huddling back into a corner of the surprisingly warm conveyance, she watched the land rolling by, growing more rocky and unwelcoming with every passing step and sighed silently. Myri had called them the Wastes, but she now realized it was where she was now heading.

“Miss?” The male voice called from above. “We be heading into Gharnholm’s territory now. Don’t fear anything ye might see, for it’s all expected.”

Hardly reassuring as she saw the vague impressions of movements within what appeared to be a nearly dead woodland. Emaciated faces? It was one flash of thought, but it simply wasn’t possible she thought and gave a shake of her head. She was letting her worry guide her imagination. The sudden sound of horses made her tense up as shouts were exchanged and she realized that they were escorting the carriage deeper into the lands. Something she had not expected either and became even more confused.

She was sure her eyes would fall out of her head at this rate, watching the large number of troops they passed, until the dark gates obscured her view and she blinked, pushing some hair back from her goggling eyes. More shouts and some crude laughter and the carriage came to a rolling, bumpy halt and she felt her hands start to shake.

Even before she had a moment to collect herself, she was hauled from the warmth and placed gently on the ground and the driver simply strode off with her bag in hand. All she could do was stand there feeling very lost and hoping her sister was near. She started after the man before losing him behind a crowd as men pushed past with several others in chains and she stepped back with a gasp of shock. Both men and woman bound and thought for just a moment she was going to faint and really shame herself.

“Kaelyn!” The melodic voice rang out over the din in the yard and she spun around, spotting her older sister moving smoothly around various groups of men towards her with bright skirts swishing and the faintest hint of long remembered bells. Utter relief swamped her then to the point she nearly fell into a storm of weeping, but managed to control the urge as she dashed towards the other woman. “Myri!”

Throwing herself into her sister’s arms, she hugged her tightly, uncaring of the shaking her arms still carried and hung on. “Oh I am so glad to see ye Myri!”

“I be glad your finally here too Kaely.” The warm hug was returned swamping Kaelyn with the soft scent of jasmine and spice. “Come now, let’s get ye settled in. Tis a mad house here today. Warbands have come in from the Wilds, so chaos reigns.” Laughter danced softly in her sister’s voice and she nodded.

Moving towards the large doors, she caught her sister’s gaze shifting towards those slaves and her own followed. Releasing her sister’s hand, Myrialla shouted out towards the men guarding but before even they could react, another figure moved in a blur from across the quad, taking the fleeing figure down with a well placed boot to the back, sending the woman sailing face first into the mud with ease and leaving that heavy limb resting there. Muttering, Myri gave a light shaking of her head. “That is nae good. Will put him in a foul mood I wager.”

Kaelyn could only stare at the creature. He was downright huge to her eyes and angry if the hissing and growls he was emitting was any indication. Of course, it was obvious just how angry he was, when he picked up the flailing woman and simply threw her through the air right at the solider racing towards him. The unfortunate man’s apologies were then knocked clean out of him as both he and the filthy female hit the ground.

The next moment, she gasped, as her sister started towards the tangled pair with a hiss while one hand held up her skirts to keep them clear of the mud. Shouting another warning having seen the woman make a grab for the soldier’s dagger. Again that massive form moved so fast she could barely keep track, reaching them before even her light-footed sister.

She couldn’t tell what happened next, but saw the sudden spray of blood and the heavily armored figure step back for only a moment, but by then, she stood with her jaw hanging, as her sweet, kind hearted sister took the woman down with a vicious blow to the back of her head and right into the heavy armor clad knee of the furious monster, and subsequently knocked her right out.

“Be ye alright Master Lucius?” Dusting off her hands and looking upwards at that terrifying figure, Myri grabbed his arm gently and the very sight left Kaelyn utterly speechless and blinking owlishly at the vision of it. It was like watching a butterfly talking to a fire-breathing dragon. It was the first thing she could compare it too.

“Aye.” He growled, and then spun to slam a hard fist into the poor man who’s knife had been taken so easily. “Fool! If that ever happens again, you will be the one in chains!” The young man’s form barreled into the stone of the building and sagged even before the Lord had finished speaking.

By now, others had joined them, taking over the guarding of those pitiful forms in chains. Starting to move off, the large form growled, one meaty hand holding his neck and the other pointed down at the still unconscious woman. “Take her into the Dungeon. She is mine to deal with now.” The very coldness of those words made Kaelyn shudder faintly.

She wanted right then to be a tiny little mouse and scurry away, but as she didn’t have the first idea about where she should go, she stayed right where she was, until her sister returned. “Ah, as I said, Chaos today. Sorry about that Kaely. Tis something that happens occasionally.”

“Will, umn, ahh, your master be alright?” She heard the tremor in her own question and sighed, the fear was pulling at her again.

“Oh Aye. He be a fast healer but I shall make sure to take him some balm for that cut. Was light, for his armor be strong and solid enough. Had that soldier been doing his job proper, Master Lucius would never have been touched, but he was trying to save that silly boy. As it is, the bitch just got lucky. A fact she will pay for dearly in the very near future I wager.” Laughing lightly, she drew the younger girl along towards the keep. “I have ye room all ready too. Tis next to mine, and there is a door at the end of the hall that leads up to the gardens. I am sure ye will like that.”

Nodding and still feeling like a lost little mouse, she let Myri lead her inside. The dark aged walls and floors was a startling contrast to the madness outside but she didn’t notice as much as she usually would. She was in shock that had to be it. In a very short time, she found herself in a lovely room with colorful hues that was soothing to her still shaken senses. It wasn’t what she thought a slave’s room would be and that alone eased some of the heady tension running wild through her body. “Master Lucius will likely be in a foul mood for a day at the least, so I shall wait to make the introductions later. Until then, ye can either rest here, or help me in my duties.”

“Ah, aye, what duties do ye have Myri?” Pushing hair out of face with a shaking hand, she turned wide stunned eyes towards her sister.

Unaware of the turmoil her younger sibling was experiencing; Myri set about unpacking her possessions and shook her head. “We shall have to get ye some new things. These be many of my old things I see. Looks like that waste of a father nae got much better.”

“I, I have mama’s jewelry. I hid it like you said I should and he never did find them.” She hurried over and pulled them out of the case and offered them to her sister.

A gentle hand brushed against Kae’s cheek and Myri smiled at her sweetly. “Now we still have something of her with us. I am glad ye didn’t loose them Kaely.”
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Myrialla DeAuster
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A gentle hand brushed against Kae’s cheek and Myri smiled at her sweetly. “Now we still have something of her with us. I am glad ye didn’t loose them Kaely.”

It was only then she noticed her sister wasn’t wearing a slave collar and blinked at her in bafflement and reached out and touched the circle of bells there. “Ye no longer enslaved?”

Capturing the hand into her own, Myri sank down on the bed next to her and smiled gently. “I haven’t been for a great while Kaely. I have been very happy here, tis' my home now and I be hoping ye feel the same soon too.”

“Why didn’t you come home?” Hurt indigo eyes rose and met her sister’s turquoise gaze.

“To what sweet? Our father gave me away like nothing more then property to be bought and sold at a whim. Had I returned, what would have stopped him from doing such again and to a far less decent of a man then the one that took me first?” Another brushing of fingers to his sister’s soft cheek and Myri sighed softly. “When he sold me for a debt without argument, he sold my love as well. Had he attempted the same with ye, Master Lucius would have known and gotten ye as well. As it is, I saw little reason to return. It was nae longer my home. I have a family that cares about me here. I matter.”

“He considered it once ye know. Selling me off like that, but he won and the thought faded.” She knew only to well that her sister was right and wouldn’t speak of that again.

“Aye, I know.” An impish smile danced over the elegant features so like her own and Kaelyn peered at Myri curiously.

“How could ye know about that?”

“Ah, I told ye, he was being watched and when word came he was deep in debt again, it was arranged that he would win enough to keep him afloat for a little longer.” This said as Myrialla rose to her feet with a gentle pat to Kaelyn’s head. “Now, do ye have need of resting or would ye like to help me? We have guests coming in and the Children will be home tonight as well. Need to change the linen in their rooms.”

“I shall help of course. I rested very well last night and after all this, ah, um, excitement, I don’t think sleep will be easily found.” With this said she bounced up to her feet with a wide smile. “I nae need worry I shall end up in a collar Myri?”

Startled turquoise eyes widened at that then she started laughing, hands pressing lightly to her peach colored lips. “Nae, nae. Master Lucius has plenty enough at the moment and ye be here as my family. Would nae be proper. However, ye do need to watch that sharp tongue of yours. He may nae slap ye into a collar but he does expect respect as his due. Same with the Lady Fiona, she be easier to deal with sometimes, but nae one to irritate.”

She nodded easily enough, hoping the garden had a lot of trees. She was getting better at managing her moods but everyone needed an outlet occasionally.

Myri moved and picked up something from the glossy wood dresser and stepped over and started to pin it on her shirt and she twisted her head to see it. “What is this?”

“Ah, until ye be known around here, this be a sign that ye are not to be touched in any manner by the various creatures we have wandering about the place. Tis for ye safety. Some can get a little rambunctious after Festivals and celebrations. Just making sure they be aware ye are not one of the stock so to speak. It be this or dress ye in white silks, and trust me when I say those can get quite dirty and easily so, this be simpler. ” Her grin was infectious and filled with humor as she released the cotton folds, hoping the item didn’t end up lost behind one of them.

“Come now. There be much to do. The cooks are already preparing a feast for tonight’s Celebration and with company coming, I must make sure the serving girls do their jobs properly. Some can be quite rebellious.”

“What shall I do for ye Myri?” Relief took the tight tension out of her features and she smiled easily, eyes lighting up and glowing with delight at being with her sibling.

“Ye can help me with the children’s rooms. Cieara is nae as bad as Daniel, but I do those rooms myself as the slaves can nae touch weapons and Danny tends to leave those lying about willy nilly. I nae know what I am going to do with that boy.” She sighed then laughed as she trotted gracefully off down the hall with her sister following in the same manner.

“Oh those are the children ye watch after?” Thinking they were both likely young if she remembered the few letters correctly.

“Nae as much now as they are older, but aye. They still be my charges in many way.” More humor danced in her tone as she pushed open Daniel’s door and sighed at the mess. “The boy be a trial.”

Peering past Myri’s shoulder her dark blue eyes widened at the disaster. “Is there even a bed in there?”

“Oh aye. Ye go ahead and start there, I shall go and collect the linens and we can clear up this mess in no time.” A giggle fell as she saw the look on Kaelyn’s face and gave her a light pat. “Nae worry. Once everything settles here, ye can become a healer for the troops and won’t have to deal with this sort of mundane activities. I also asked the Lady Fiona to teach ye some basic fighting skills when she can and she has agreed most willingly.”

She had not even considered learning to fight, but the thought wasn’t at all distasteful and she grinned happily. “I am to learn how to fight?”

“Aye. Living here, ye will find that many can’t stop in the midst of battle to save some fluff headed woman from death. So, we have to save ourselves, it’s very inspiring.”

Pushing her sister into the room, she chuckled softly. “I learned and if ye have continued the dancing, ye will find out it’s very easy.”
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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 2:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

“I look forward to that Myri, unlike tackling this room. Goodness!” She picked up a heavy bit of discarded armor and shook her head. That little boy must think in grand scale if the size of this stuff was any indication. Listening to the soft lilting song her sister was singing as she headed off down the hall, she set about making the room look reasonably organized, picking up a variety of weapons from the floor and placing them into a pile in the corner with a crinkling of her nose. “That little boy is a piglet.”

Under a pile of clothing, she found bags of coin and jewels and shook her head as her sister returned with a stack of lush sheets in her arms. “Ye look to be making a dent in this disaster Kaely.”

“Aye. I nae have any idea what to do with much of this Myri. Nae looks like there be a place to put it.” She rose up from her knees and brushed at them with dusty hands.

Laughing, the slender woman moved to place her burden on the bed and blew cinnamon hair from her eyes. “That wall over there opens up to shelves for many of those weapons he loves.” She pointed a simple wood panel and Kaelyn just shook her head and walked over and in seconds found the opening.

“Ye keep on working here, I shall be back. Cieara is nae so messy so it should only take me a short time to finish her chamber.” She chuckled again and strolled out with the soft chiming of bells to mark each step.

“Aye, that be fine Myri.” She then set about the task of placing the heavy swords, daggers and other items she couldn’t identify into the closet. “Most little boys have tin soldiers but nae this one. Must be a right hellion I wager.” She muttered to herself trying to envision the boy her sister obviously loved with the remembered impression of the father and made a face. “A little walking giant eh?”

Working smoothly, she had the floor nearly clear and was soon down on her knees, crawling under the bed to pull out one hiding blade away from the protective dust bunnies.

“What the hell do you think your doing?” The frigid voice caught her totally off guard and she instantly banged her head into the bed frame.

“Ouch! Visdane!” The curse growled from clenched teeth as her poor head was being put through hell the past few days. Wiggling back as quickly as she could, she moved up onto her knees and peered behind her at the young man filling the door way with arms folded and looking rather fierce with shaggy inky black hair and icy cold blue-green eyes just glaring at her. She was suddenly aware of just how undignified her position was and hurried moved so it wasn’t her backside he saw in such a predominant position and letting the dagger fall from her numb fingers to the carpet.

“Um, I be cleaning up this disaster called a room, what does it look like?” Words falling out before she could rethink them and she nearly backed down and apologized instantly, but changed her mind at the look over coming his face.

Didn’t like her tone eh? Well he took off a good ten seasons of her life calling out like that. Her heart was still pounding from the shock, so he was due it at the least.

“Only Myri’s allowed to do that here.” Lips thinning into a nasty tight slash and those startling eyes narrowed, making she swallow nervously. Could this be the master? He was big enough, but didn’t look nearly old enough. Had she already put her foot in her mouth? Okay, time to regroup she thought and offered a weak apologetic smile. “I be helping Myri with this mess Milord. She’s a bit pressed ye see and asked if I would do such.”

Catching the teasing bob of one of those sly little dust balls clinging to a strand of hair, she snatched at it, thinking she must look a fright. Talk about making a dreadful first impression as she struggled valiantly not to squirm under that frigid chilling gaze.

She realized moments later he couldn’t be the Lord and Master because he simply wasn’t old enough, which was something of a relief, but he was still making her very uncomfortable with that intently piercing gaze of his. So she thought to distract him with her next suggestion. “Ye are welcome to help if you like Milord. I am sure the young master wouldn’t mind.”

Sarcasm now laced his tones as a raven brow lifted. “Oh I am honored to be sure, considering this is MY damn room!” She would have bolted if able, but his large frame was blocking the exit, as he hadn’t moved an inch since she turned around to look at him. But at his words, she could only gaped in more astonishment. At this rate, she would be dead in a fortnight at all the deadly bombshells she was getting in such swift order. This was not a small boy, but a young man with a really rude demeanor!

“Oh Goodness! Ye be the piglet?” And once more her tongue ran away from her without thinking first while her mind scrambled to recover from the revelation of his identity.
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Daniel DeAuster
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

“Piglet?” Thoroughly taken aback, Daniel finally managed to sputter out the word. How dare she! “PIGLET!” How dare this slave speak to him like that! He didn’t care how well her ass looked; insolence to the family by a slave was intolerable. It didn't occur to him in his anger that the girl was not dressed in the silks or uniforms the slaves of the household normally wore. He stepped into the room fully, a hand beginning to come down, in preparation of slapping some sense into her. The weight of another hand coming down on his shoulder drew him short, and he glanced back, then up to meet the eyes of his father.

“There you are, Daniel.” Lucius's other hand held a red-soaked rag to his throat, and tiny splatters of blood still rested on his chin, slowly drying. Daniel’s own eyes squinted, wondering what had happened, when his father continued. “I need to speak with you in the Underhalls.” Turning, without waiting for a reply, the elder DeAuster started to move down the hall.

“I’ll be there in a few minutes.” Turning back to the girl, noting she was now standing, Daniel took a step forward, but his father’s voice stopped him again.

“Now, Daniel!” Stepping back to the doorway, Lucius’s face showed that he was in no mood to be trifled with. He looked over to the girl, who seemed to want to crawl under the bed and hide, then back to his son before turning with a flurry of the heavy cloak and moved down the hall.

“Damn.” That was muttered low, before Daniel turned back to Kaelyn. “Well, go on. Get out of here!” That appeared to be the very thing she had wanted to hear, as she muttered “Yes, milord” and fairly bolted for the door. As she passed he swatted her hard on her bottom, bringing a squeal from her.

“Don’t you DARE ever do that again!” she fairly spat, rubbing her backside, her stare burning Daniel where he stood.

“Look, girl...” Daniel leaned close in toward her and was silently satisfied in seeing her flinch back from him. “The only reason you’re not being whipped, is that I’ve gotta go.” Letting her think about that, he stormed off toward the stairs heading upward.

In the Underhalls, he found Lucius standing near the great table set along its center, and moved that way. His father turned as he approached and held out two sealed envelopes. Daniel accepted them, and looked at them curiously. “What are these?”

“One is for the mayor of Torrence, the first village we claimed.” The beginnings of a smile crept across Lucius’s features. “It explains the new laws and taxation tables. And, the cost of not following them. The second is for Jagga, the leader of the warband occupying Torrence.”

"You want me to be a delivery boy?” Daniel stared at his father hard. “I mean, why not send this with one of the soldiers? Or even Corbane?”

Lucius sighed softly, shaking his head as he regarded his son. This was becoming an all-to-familiar conversation with Daniel in recent months, as the young man edged into that nebulous time between his teens and adulthood. The elder was also acutely aware of the demon within Daniel stirring, as it also approached maturity. Combined with the hotblood of his own Beast, it meant Fiona had broken up more than one arguement between the two.

“Daniel, listen to me a minute.” Spinning, Lucius walked to the dais and ascended to his chair to sit down before continued. “I’ve trained you to the best of my ability. You know what it means to be a commander and a fighter.” He waved his hand slightly, the gesture meant to take in the Underhalls and, by rote, Gharnhome above. “The palisade we are building in Torrence is meant to give us a measure of control of the lands I have taken from that bastard Urevan so far. When winter breaks, I plan on taking the rest.” He leaned forward, fires burning deep within his eyes. “When it is completed, I plan to leave you in charge of the palisade, and in turn, in charge of the defenses of Torrence and it's surrounding lands."

Daniel gaped, not having expected what he had just heard. “That’s right…” Lucius continued. “Now, you will learn what it means to rule. Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to go out as you want.” He leaned back, tossing the bloody rag to one side with an annoyed grunt.

“What about Cie?” Daniel asked, resting one foot on the dais. “She’s gonna flip when she hears about this.”

“Your sister is going with me.” Lucius replied, resting his arms on the armrests of the throne. “It’s time she experienced what you have. I have plans for her.” Again, that smile, touched with the hint of evil. “Now, go. Take Dante, and you’ll be back in time for the first feast.” Nodding once, Daniel turned to head for the door leading to the stairs above ground, leaving his father to quietly plot his next move on the chessboard of war.
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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 5:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

She was downright boiling with temper by the time she managed to locate her sister. That ill manner “pig” likely left a huge bruise on her derriere and had actually wanted to whip her instead! Fine way to treat one cleaning up such a sty! She flounced into the other room and stopped, looking about for Myri and snorted in rage. “Myri! Where are ye?”

“Over here, Kaely.” Stepping out from behind a heavy brocade curtain and smiled, before moving back to place plush pillows back on the bed. “Ye get Daniel’s room done?”

Lips reaching a full pout, she continued to rub the stinging place on her backside and shook her head, the long braid dancing about madly with that movement. ”Nae. I was assaulted instead. By that foul little boy ye adore so much.”

“Danny’s back?” Her sister’s eyes just lit up then blinked as she noticed her sister’s obviously insulted posture. “Oh dear. What happened Sweet?” She was already moving towards her with a suddenly concerned expression.

“He slapped me!” Showing not an inch of modesty now, she yanked up the soft folds of her skirt and pointed at the handprint on her skin that was already starting to bruise.

A quick look and her sister started to laugh softly. “Oh that just be a little tap Kaely, Tis nothing to get so upset about. He nae knows ye and might simply had thought ye be one of the slave girls about the place.”

“But, but Myri! He wanted to WHIP me!” Her face was a study in outrage and she was nearly to the point of squeaking. Unfortunately, it only made her older sister laugh more.

Patting her sister lightly, she brushed the skirts from Kaelyn’s hands back into place and chuckled softly. “Ah, well the whip is nae always a dreadful thing either. Depends on how it be used.”

Absolute horror flooded the younger woman’s face and she could only gape at her sister. The mere idea simply wasn’t sinking in and she struggled to speak, but could only sputter for a moment.

“Oh nae worry little sister, I shall speak with the Lady Fiona and make sure he doesn’t attempt to beat ye.” Still, her voice was laden with humor. “Ye will be safe from that.”

“There is nae any way I would “like” a whipping Myri!” She was feeling another rippling shock. Even if her life had been hard, she had never been abused like that, so it was a fact she couldn’t seem to wrap her mind around.

“Oh ye will learn about it all in due time. Nae be such a little fusspot.” Clicking her tongue a bit, she quickly picked up the last of the sheets and moved towards Daniel’s room. “Come along now, I shall finish this up and then show ye about the place.”

She didn’t want to go back into that, that creature’s room again but felt she didn’t have much choice and was soon assisting in the changing out of bed sheets with her gaze frequently darting towards the door nervously.

“How is it, he only managed to swat ye and nae whip ye as ye think he planned Kaely?” Pushing the fall of rich red from her brow, Myri gazed over at her sister, and then tossed more of those decadent pillows onto the bed.

“Another man showed up and demanded he go with him.” She hadn’t really had a chance to look at him well, but had a vague memory of another fierce looking fellow with red hair and a trimmed beard and conveyed that to her sister.

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Myrialla DeAuster
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

“Ah, Master Lucius. He and Lady Fiona are usually the only ones Daniel will listen to instantly. He does also listen to me, but with less attention.” Fingers snapping them and she grinned. “Remind me to bring him that balm later. I nae want that neck to get septic.”

Oh this was worse then she thought. The Lord himself had walked in on that and she felt her face just flood with color. Her blasted tongue sent her right into a mess already and she could well imagine it would only get worse.

“Oh stop that fretting. Ye will nae be whipped unless ye want it and ye be safe. I shall speak with the Lady Fiona and it will be taken care of. This I promise. Now, let me take ye on a tour of the place.”

Kaelyn nodded while fiddling nervously with a strand of soft red hair and followed her sister obediently into the halls. She was already cataloging the plus side to things. These halls were a fair distance away from the room she had. She had a sharp eye and could avoid the young master. She was surprisingly good at ducking and dodging creditors, one snarly young man wouldn’t be at all difficult to avoid.

“By now, he’s likely already forgotten about ye Kaely.” As if she had read her mind, Myri glanced back over a shoulder and smiled teasingly. “Ye also might find avoiding him rough, for if he hasn’t dropped ye from his thought, he will seek ye out. He was always a very stubborn child.”

Muttering with an irritated glance sent from the deep blue eyes towards her sister and she sighed, one hand moving to rub at her offended derriere again with a wince. Mere moments later however, she was crowding up against her sister as she caught another flash of long black hair and thought it was him already.

“Ah, good evening to ye Milord Lorcain. Ye rooms are ready for ye. Just let me know if ye have need of anything else.”

Knees shaking with relief as she noticed this one was of a slighter build and perhaps taller, but he was still no less intimidating. Ice green eyes swept over the pair, as if logging them to memory and even his voice mad her skin shiver, for it was barely above a whisper. “I need nothing currently. Thank ye.”
“Oh Milord, this be me younger sister Kaelyn. Come to live here now.” Myri just smiled easily, not the least bit bothered by the standoffish man.

She did get a polite bow at the introduction and instantly placed this one a few notches above that Daniel. Even if the look in those artic green eyes made her believe he had already dismissed her.

Myri then took Kae’s hand and pulled her along down the long dark hallway. “That was the Lady Fiona’s younger brother. He’s a frosty sort, but decent enough in his own way. Rumor has it he be sweet on one of the Albaelia girls. Would be a good match I wager were it to happen.” Laughter floated softly from the lithe figure as she glided smoothly along. “Cieara’s friendly with one of the brothers as well, so ye will likely run into them about the place eventually.”

Great, more faces to remember and keep her tongue in place when doing so. She had left a land where the only people she usually saw were debt collectors to now, seeing so many her head was spinning from it. She only hoped she could keep them all in proper place and not shame herself later.

Soon enough she was shown the entire house, having been taken by Myri room by room but for a few. “I won’t take ye down that way. Tis the playroom and nae for the faint of heart, for it’s rather like a dungeon ye could say and if me ears be right, the Master is working anyway.”

“The, the Master is…” She gasped faintly as her own ears caught a cracking sound and she winced. “Torturing someone?”

“Oh Aye. It is likely that slave that cut him earlier as I did see them dragging her this way. Tis to be expected after all.” Giving a sympathetic pat to her sister’s hand. “Nae ye worry now. Ye will learn it all in time.”

She only hoped Myri was right, as she was then lead out into the gardens. Here, she was overjoyed to find trees and life blooming in bounty and her eyes lit up. “Oh Myri, this is lovely.”

“Aye, this be the garden. Over there to the left be the herbs, though I still have to collect some in the wild. I will show ye tomorrow where I go for that. To the right be the Greenhouse. The Lady Fiona likes Calla Lilies and those nae grow without the warmth.

I also grow strawberries and other fruits there, as it’s simply easier. Now, up that way around that bend is the rose garden. It even has a few blooming, as the area is warded. The winter be quite vicious down this far so we do what we can.”

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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 3:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

She was suddenly feeling far better. Plenty of trees to abuse when needed, lovely flowers, and the soft fragrance she found very comforting. She felt sure she would come here often and smiled, assuming none of the others bothered with the place. A sanctuary in a place of total confusion.

“Now, we need to get ye something to wear for tonight’s festivities.” Myri was already moving towards the interior doors and Kaelyn could only offer a silent sigh and follow.

“I nae have anything for a party Myri. I thought I would just stay in my rooms tonight as well.“ She had hoped she could, as she really didn’t want to run into the heir again, at least not this soon.

“Nae, nae! Ye can’t. The Celebration is often a lot of fun and ye must attend. All the house members do so. Besides, I am hoping to introduce ye properly to Lord Lucius and Lady Fiona.”

Myri was wearing an insistent look and her sister was quick to realize she wasn’t going to be able to duck the party. Nose crinkling, she once more fell into step with her sister and was led back inside.

Mere moments later, she was buried under a mountain of silks, satins, all in various colors and hues. Nearly overwhelmed, she could only stare blankly at her sister as she held up one outfit and laughed merrily. “Try this one on. Tis a lovely blue that will match ye eyes.”

“Myri, I can’t wear that!” She was looking at the neckline of the top, which was a bit lower then she was comfortable with.

“Quit being such a prude. Ye are nae a slave and can wear things that look pretty. Trust me, ye will be decently covered.” The first sign of temper but for her attack on the woman trying to flee, Myri’s eyes flashed for a moment. “I used to walk about here naked when I was a slave and it was very liberating. This is not nude at least. I say if ye have it flaunt it proudly too. It’s the one thing we as woman have after all.”

Disbelief as she could only yet again stare owlishly at her older sister, wondering about this philosophy. She had never considered herself a prude. Prudent yes, but not stuffy or anything.

“Ah, back where we come from,it be very different. Ye can relax here Sweet, tis ye home now, and ye be safe here. Nae anyone will touch ye are seek to do ye harm, this I promise. To do such, could bring trouble for them.” Dropping the dress she wanted Kaelyn to wear, her hands moved to rest on her hips almost defiantly.

“Ha! That young Master touched me without asking. Swatted me!” Kaelyn pointed at her backside.

“Well, he nae has to ask, but he’s the heir here. However, once he knows ye are nae a slave, he will act differently.” Confidently those words tumbled from Myri’s lips and she nodded.

“Your sure about that Myri?” Peering intently at her sister now, Kaelyn watched to see if she had any uncertainly about that last statement.

“Aye. I am sure of it.” She wasn’t really, but wasn’t about to let Kaelyn see it and gave her a brilliant smile. “Now, try on the dress. If ye be such a worry wart, we will stuff some lace down the front to keep ye feeling pure.”

In short time, Kaelyn was staring at herself in the mirror and shaking her head, while behind her Myri laughed happily. “It’s perfect for ye. The blue matches ye eyes perfectly and is a nice contrast for ye hair too.”

“Don’t you have something not so… Low cut Myri?” Turning away from the reflection that was almost a stranger to her self in that stunning blue dress.

“Nae. I don’t. Here, that be actually very a very sweet and proper neckline, nae scandalous at all. Ye will learn quickly that hear ye can wear pretty things and nae be all that prudish about. For it has little use.” Soft melodic laughter falling as she spun about with a dark elegant bit of lace in her hand. “Do ye want some stockings perhaps? I nae wear them often myself, but if ye would feel less exposed, it might help.”

“Um, I don’t know.” She was feeling like a carriage ran over her at the moment, as she simply wasn’t going to get out of this and just wanted to throw a fit, but was only to aware that her sister would slap her silly if she did.

“Nae worry, there will be plenty of naked slaves about, few will even look at ye.” The grin wasn’t reassuring at all but Kaelyn knew when she was beat and just nodded.

“I’ll wear the stockings.” It was one more layer, which was better then nothing after all.

“Well, good. Now that this is all settled, let me show ye were to bath and we can get ready. I still have to oversee the servants and make sure the cook has everything needed.”

Again she could only stare in awe, as she was lead into the bathing area. The large fall of water flowed down into a steaming pool and she looked around. “This be yours?”

“Aye, though others have use of it if they like. Most of the family uses their own of course.” Pushing the towels into her sister’s arms, Myri moved to collect the various oils and soaps. “Ye can use any of these and take ye time. There be plenty of it before the party starts. So relax and enjoy the peace while ye can Kaely.”

“Where are you going?” She wasn’t sure she wanted Myri out of her sight, as the last time hadn’t faired well in her favor at all.

“I am going to speak with the Lady Fiona then check the kitchens. I shall nae be gone long and it is unlikely anyone will come in here, so ye are safe. Quit being such a baby Kaely, as it ill suites ye anyway.” Her smile softened her words as she turned and floated out with the soft chiming of dancer bells.

Shedding her clothing, she slipped into the heated water and grinned to herself. This was a surprise, but one of the better ones so far. They had running water at home, but as heat was costly, she hadn’t had many hot baths, so this was pure luxury to her. Eventually, she made her way into the falls, letting the silky water rinse away the soap and leave a soft pleasant scent permeating her hair and skin.

Blinking the water from her eyes as she stepped clear of the flow and instantly stumbled at the sight of a slim young woman watching her. Sliding down into the shielding pool, she stared right back at the delicate looking red head with astonished eyes.
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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 3:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

“Oh, your not Myri. Who are you?” Came the responding question obviously noted in Kaelyn’s stunned eyes.

“A, um, I be Kaelyn, Myri’s sister.” She was quick to state that, having not had the chance earlier with Daniel so now, thought it best to make sure she was known.

“Oh yes, I remember. Heard you were coming. I’m Cie. Say, you don’t mind if I join you here huh? Just got back from the city and feeling pretty foul. Dirty place, but it does have its uses.” An impish grin accompanied the words and the girl didn’t even wait, just started shedding clothing.

“I was looking for my brother and figured Aunt Myri would know where he was.” She babbled continuously while undressing them slipped smoothly into the heated bathing pool.Cieara’s ice green eyes just twinkled with mirth. “Can you pass the soap?”

Passing the glass bowl over to let her pick the scent, Kae just gazed wide eyed at the young woman, not at all sure just how she should respond.

“So, how ya like the place? Did Myri get a chance to take you around? Have you met any of the other family yet? What about this party huh? Wicked isn’t it?” A string of questions buffeted Kaelyn and she could only blink rapidly with each one. She wasn’t even sure an answer was required, since they call came at rapid fire.

“I, well, I think I will need to get used to the place.” She stayed low in the water, feeling just a bit more exposed then usual and smiled weakly.

“Oh, it’s not a bad place at all. Went to a few of those so-called Noble houses and it was much worse. Trust me. Rude people and the like, I hate those sort of parties, but my parents say I will have to get used to it.” She made a face and crossed her eyes in an amusing fashion that Kae laughed, feeling more at ease.

“Well, fill me in. Who have you met so far?” Curious eyes matched the questioning tilt of the girl’s auburn head and Kaelyn chuckled quietly.

“I met ye uncle so far and…ye brother.” She tried really hard not to let her nose crinkle when she mentioned Daniel, but apparently Cieara was more perceptive then she appeared as her eyes lit up with sudden humor.

“What happened huh? Don’t say “nothing” because I caught that little micro-look.” A waggled finger was sent her way along with a very bright smile. “Was it Uncle Lor? He’s not known to be the friendliest of creatures. Tends to be downright gloomy some days.”

“Ah, nae, ye uncle was very polite.” Kaelyn was now trying to figure out how to make a graceful escape, but as she started to edge towards the steps, the young woman caught her arm.

“Come on now, you have to tell me what Danny did. He’s such a golden boy you know.” Snorting faintly, Cie tossed her head then grinned wickedly. “If you don’t tell me, I will hound you all night.”

Having no idea as to what method the girl would use, and imagining the worst, Kaelyn caved in quickly, telling her the tale without a single fabrication, even including the fact she had a bit of a problem with her run away tongue.

“Ooh! That’s so rich! I love it. Piglet! Ha!” She other girl fell back against the side of the tub, shaking with laughter. “It’s true you know! He is a mess monster!”

Kaelyn just gazed at the girl and pushed wet hair from her eyes, totally baffled at the humor of it. “Why do ye think it’s funny? He slapped me, and left a bruise!” She then rose up out of the water and pointed at her derriere, still upset over the event.

“Ooh! He did!” Gasping, Cie bent over nearly double and her laughter fell and bounced right into the water. “He is going to be totally mortified when he finds out your not a slave! Oh, I must be there when that happens! I must!”

“I plan to avoid him Milady. Tis best that way as I tend to lose control of me temper and Myri says I should learn so manage that.” She had finally managed to reach the edge of the bathing pool and slipped out, where she pulled a thick plush towel about her wet frame.

“That’s not going to be easy you know. Right now, its not a problem with all the men about, but once the celebrations are over in a few days, avoiding will be nearly impossible, as Danny is often around the kitchens.” She then ducked her head into the steaming waters and rose up sputtering some.

“Unless Daddy takes him out on another raid and those won’t come until after the thaw. If that happens, your free and clear of him, but I know it won’t be easy when he’s home. Besides, he’s really not a bad guy. Almost puritan in how he treats ladies too. You know, boring.” Grinning, she shook water from her hair and reached for the shampoo. “When he finds out he slapped you and your not one of the houses slaves, he’s going to be very apologetic. Believe me.”

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Cieara DeAuster
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cieara was more then even a little amused. Her dull big brother had made a major Social mistep and she was most gleeful about it. For once it wasn't her feeling silly or young. Oh yes she was going to enjoy this.

Kaelyn wore a dubious expression as she gazed at Cie now then shook her head. “I nae think I believe that. He did nae act that way when he was growling at me. Gave me a fright he did. All chilly and growling.” Shivering at the memory.

“Trust me Kaelyn, once he knows, he will become the usual, courteous, boring old Danny again.” Giggling, a bubble coated Cieara dove under the falling water with suds flowing away swiftly. Wading back out, she grinned and reached for the towel Kaelyn was holding out to her. “He’s about as threatening as a baby kitten. Nothing like Daddy or Kar, why even Uncle Lor can chill one with a look but let me tell you, the ladies flock around him. Danny, he attracts the little husband hunters. Those poodle type woman that fall apart when they break a nail.” Cie's running commentary continued as she wrapped the large towel around her slight body and giggled.

“Since you obviously are “NOT” one of those kind of woman, I don’t think you have anything to worry about. Well, until Kar shows up. He's a huge flirt.” More bubbling laughter as she moved to take up the comb from the sideboard.

Kaely just sank down on the stone steps she just stared at the other girl in astonishment and feeling the blush move all the way up to the very roots of her hair. “Isn’t this Kar ye beau?” Absently she started to rub the scented oil into her skin while listening.

“He’s one of them yes. I have a few but it’s nothing serious or anything. I’m only a hundred and eighteen years old after all.” A bright smile lit up her face and she spun about to gaze at Kaelyn. “Hey? You want to come back to the city with me next week? We can go shopping, get your hair cut, maybe have some fun!”

Mouth falling open for a moment, Kaelyn soon found her voice and shook her head. “Nae, I don’t have any money Milady. I also have not fond of cities in general.”

“Oh, call me Cie please. Milady makes me think of my Mum. She’s the Mistress here not me. Who said you don’t have money? Your one of the family now, so anything you buy gets paid for. Come on! Live a little! Cut loose! We will have a lot of fun!”

“Ah, Nae!” She fumbled with the bottle, quickly catching it before it could fall and shatter on the ground and lifted wide bewildered eyes to peer at the girl. “Ye be quite wild eh?”

“Me? Not really, but I make a damn good impression of it.” The grin was infectious and soon had Kaelyn laughing even as her head shook in negation.

“I only just arrived so I would rather get settled before venturing into the city.” Pulling out her own comb, she set about taming her long hair still chuckling quietly.

Snorting, Cie moved to drop down next to the other girl where she stole the comb and started to unsnarl the tangles from Kaelyn’s long mane. “Danny stuffy too he doesn't cut loose, and he’s a guy! I figure I just take after my Father. I am at least a bit more curious and a heck of a lot more lively usually. Weird though, since it’s Mum’s family that’s got the Demon blood but Mum is very reserved. Should see my Grandmother in action though. It’s a sight to be called inspiring. She crooks a little finger and the men around here just fall. Even my Grandfather is still hooked on her and they barely even see each other.”

More people she would likely meet and find intimidating was her thought, but Kaelyn nodded quietly, letting the Cieara comb out the mess of tangles.

Cie caught those emotions easily enough, something she hadn't actually mentioned she could do, to the newest resident. Of course she was delighted. Any chance she could torment her brother she took. It was a game they played. Seeing who could out do the other after all but this, oh this was rich.

“It simply boggles my mind that Danny behaved like that. He’s always so mind-numbingly dull it’s almost painful. Habitually, he’s exceedingly polite and quiet, so unlike me really. I think I would have loved to have seen it. Of course I would have been laughing myself stupid at it too.” Giggling more, she rose up on her knees and started to play with the now smooth golden red hair. “What was your first thought when you saw him like that?”

“I thought he looked fierce.” No lie there, as she did think that, while her heart was trying to bounce right out of her chest.

Gales of laugher fell at that, and Cie leaned to peer at her from her kneeling position. “You will find out, that first impressions are often wrong. Danny fierce? Oooh. Hades that IS so funny!”

Soon enough, the two girls were heading back to Kaelyn's room and Cie stared at her in shock, the lacy square a horrible addition to what to her was a very conservative dress. “No! You can’t mean to cover up like that! It looks weird doing that too!” Next thing Kaelyn knew, she was in a tussle over the scrap of lace set for the front of the blue dress. The struggle short lived however as the battle ending with Cieara the victor.

“I have an idea that is much better then this,” Waving the offending lace about in the air. “Scrap of netting. So grab your slippers and stockings, we will finish this in my room!”

Myri entered moments later with a bright smile, the brilliant sea shaded outfit even more revealing then the blue one she had supplied for her sister, as much of her mid-drift was bare. “Ah, Good evening Cie. I see ye have found my sister and appear to be helping her dress.”

“Of course.” Cie grinned and darted over to hug her while laughing merrily. “She doesn’t have much fashion sense at all Aunt Myri.”

“Nae, but tis' where she has come that is at fault sweet.” The smile was warm as she gazed towards Kaelyn. “Ye look very lovely Kaely. I like the way Cie has fixed ye hair. Easier to see ye face with those crowned braids.”

A nervous hand lifted to touch the golden locks and Kaelyn chuckled quietly. Only half of her long mop was up, the rest flowed unrestrained down her back but wasn’t drifting into her eyes at least. “Thank ye Myri. Ye look beautiful as always.”

Laughing, the older woman looked at the pair then nodded. “Ye run along and give Cie a hand dressing. She tends to change her mind a half dozen times before deciding, so just be prepared for it Kaely.”

“I do not Aunt Myri. Well, I don’t mean to do that, but what I think will look good, doesn’t feel right, so I change until I find something that does!” Grinning impishly, she didn’t wait for more, just grabbed Kaelyn’s hand and dragged her out the door and down the hall towards her own chambers.

She did skid to a stop outside her brother’s door and press and ear there. “Darn it! He’s not back yet, the rat! Oh well, come on!”

Wilting with relief at that little reprieve, Kaelyn let herself be dragged further, smiling in delight that the Fates were being kind to her for a change. “I be glad he isn’t back Cie.”

“Well, you would, but I am not. I want to see his face Damn it!” Grinning wickedly, she pushed her new friend into her room and slammed the door loudly. “I will get the chance, as I am not letting you get away until it happens.”

She was serious. Cieara fully planned to enjoy every last second of her brother squirming like a little fish on a hook. She could just see it now, his face going all red with embarassment when he realized what he had done. OOoh, she was so looking forward to that. Golden Boy, indeed. The only thing that would be better, was if her her father found out, but knowing Myri and her Mum, he never would. Of course she could tell, but even she drew the line sometimes. Luc wasn't all that much fun when he went snarly. Ah well, just seeing perfect big brother feeling like an ogre would be worth plenty enough.

I never want to lose
what I have finally found
There's a requiem, a new congregation
And it's telling me
Go forward and walk
Under a brighter sky
Euphoria by Delirium
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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 3:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mere moments later, she sat shaking her head at the dress the other girl was thinking of wearing. It was far more revealing then anything she had seen ever and she just didn’t think it would be a good idea.

“What do you think about this one Kaely?” Spinning about with a wide bright smile and her long waving auburn hair drifting about her like a soft cloud, she struck a pose.

“I think ye look very good in it, but ye father will likely nae like how much ye be showing.” She simply couldn’t help her tone, as for her, it was a rather daring gown.

“Oh. Normally I wouldn’t mind tweaking Daddy’s temper, but I heard some slave attacked him, so maybe your right. Don’t want him bellowing at me for my style choices if he’s already in a bad mood. Might end up in the kennels as he has threatened before.” Her eyes twinkled with mirth as her nose crinkled then turned to find something else.

“Would ye father do that to ye?” Disbelief colored Kaelyn’s tone as she sat back with a hand lifting to her cheek.

“Oh, I don’t think so, but you can never tell with my father. Depends on his mood and how far he’s pushed.” She turned and the dark green velvet skirt swished softly about her knees. “What about this? Not as long as most, but it covers all the proper parts without being boring.”

“That one looks very pretty Cie.” It did cover all the correct areas even if her top was tight fitting, and even less modest then Kaelyn’s own. It was however, the best of five suggestions and she didn’t think she could take much more.

“Good! Now, here drape that over your shoulders it will cover you up without making you silly. Scraps of lace are just fashion faux pas Kaely.” She tossed over a soft shawl made of delicate netting that rested without itching against her bosom. It didn’t really cover, but she was starting to realize the reason why her idea of modesty simply didn’t exist here, was that no one let it. Of course she was used to more staid,puretain fashions and would likely have to learn along with everything else about such things.

After another hour of enduring Cieara’s hair styling extravaganza, she was glad to finally be moving towards the upper floor. In truth, she had enjoyed the lighthearted humor of the other girl, but after inspecting just one to many looks, she felt quite drained. As it was, Cie had settled on simply leaving her hair down and was once more, pulling her along towards the main hall. “Come on Kaely, we haven’t got all night. Sun will be up before you know it!”

“Aye, I know.” Her response was a touch subdued, having realized the large amount of people milling about the elegant room. She wasn’t at all surprised to see she was likely the most covered female on the place, as other ladies were wearing far less then she was. Which of course made her suddenly feel over-dressed.

A quick darting search of deep blue eyes as she was tugged along into the din, then that sense of reprieve, not seeing a single male that resembled the butt swatter. “Do ye see Myri anywhere Cie?”
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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The younger girl grinned, she hopped up and down for a moment and each spring seemed to send her higher into the air and Kaelyn blinked. “Oh yes! She’s over near the buffet. Oh look! It’s Grandmama! Come on, let me introduce you to her, she’s a real character.”

Soon she found herself pulled into a cluster of men; all surrounding a startlingly beautiful woman that didn’t look at all like her idea of anyone’s grandmother. She didn’t even look old enough to be anyone’s mother for that matter. Must be that time thing she thought and just waited quietly. The woman had the same black hair and ice frosty green eyes as her Son and Granddaughter's, but hers didn’t gleam with humor or rage, but with something Kaelyn wasn’t sure she could identify. The lady Lillian was also wearing some creation designed to display her assets to the best advantage and still be called somewhat decent if that wine red dress was any clue.

“Grandmama, meet Aunt Myri’s sister Kaelyn. She just arrived and is going to live here now with us!” Cieara smiled happily as she leaned down to press a light kiss to the pale cheek of the lady holding court.

The gaze that feel upon Kaelyn then, was unsettling, seemed to look deep into her and make her nervous. Her hands folded politely and rested before as she offered a smile and an elegant little curtsey. “Lovely to meet ye Milady.”

“Ah, call me Lillian M’dear.” A slow smile drew up the corners of the Demoness’s burgundy stained lips and her eyes smoldered. “How sweet and pure you look child. Won’t take to much time to corrupt you properly if you’re willing.”

A flush rose instantly in Kaelyn’s pale face and she forced herself to just smile and not respond, having no idea of how one could to such a statement without potential insult.
Thankfully, Cie was once more dragging her away before another word could be said. “Have fun Grandmama, need to take Kaely here over to Aunt Myri.”

“Ye too children.” She then returned her favored attentions to the patiently waiting collection of men with low husky laughter chasing the girls back into the room.

“Didn’t I tell you?” Laughing, she took a firmer grip on Kaelyn’s hand and led her towards the buffet table where Myri was apparently chastising one of the servants there. “Here she is Aunt Myri, safe and sound. I even introduced her to Grandmama and got her away before she even had a chance to try and bite.”

“Ah, lovely.” Myri paused and turned to smile warmly at the pair with her hands moving to rest lightly on her silk clad hips. “Ye parents have nae shown yet, but should be here soon. So, ye to go and find a place to sit and enjoy the party until they come.”

“Sure thing Myri. Come on Kaelyn, I know the perfect spot to sit and just watch for a while. Has a great view of the room.” Passing once more through the thickening crowd, she pushed open a hidden panel and was tugging Kaelyn along. “It’s an old spy spot. Found it when we were younger and it’s great for these shindigs.”

Having no idea what such a thing was, she just nodded and smiled gamily, willing to stay with Cie who seemed to have no fear at all. “We will have a clear view of all those below?”

”Oh yes! It’s great. Trust me!” Laughing merrily, she pushed open another small door and slipped inside and dropped down on a smooth wooden bench and pointed.
Below, the room spread out showing the tops of dozens of heads and the colorful flashes of clothing all the people wore.

“When Danny and I were much younger, we were not allowed to attend these parties as they can get pretty rowdy and bawdy, so we used to sit up here and make up stories about people. Made for some great fun.” Leaning to rest her arm on a small stone ledge, she pointed down at one. “See that lady there? The one with that tacky feather stuck in her curls?”

Taking Cie’s lead, she also leaned into the rail and gazed down, finding the woman all to easily, as the feather really was a stand out. “Aye, what about her?”

“She used to be a slave, but now she runs a cat house.” A wicked grin danced over Cieara’s face.

“She raises cats?” Not at all sure how that was supposed to be surprising, and her confused eyes slid towards the other girl. “What be wrong with that?”

“Not cats silly, a Cat house. It’s a place where men go and pay for sex with all sorts of woman.”

“Goodness!” She turned back and just stared at the woman, who to her, wasn’t all that attractive and that dreadful feather didn’t help.

“The one that brought her is one of my Daddy’s Generals. He’s got really bad taste and not to many real teeth either.” Nose crinkling briefly. “But he is loyal and that’s what matters so Daddy says.”
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Kaelyn DeAuster
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 20, 2006 1:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was another half hour or so when the room suddenly became hushed and all eyes turned towards the main doors. There a couple entered. It was obviously the lord and lady of the Keep, for Kaelyn did recognize the large auburn haired man from earlier. His timing having saved her from much worse then a mere swat to the backside. Dressed casually but with elegance, the jet-black silk shirt and soft matching suede breeches were worn obviously for comfort. While the rich coal dark boots showed quality and spoke of his obvious wealth. It was a stark contrast to the vibrant hair that fell to rest on wide shoulders and Kaelyn just blinked owlishly. He didn’t look anything like he had earlier.

The woman on his arm was another surprise. She knew in an instant that she was obviously Cieara and Daniel’s mother, for she had that raven black hair and the very same frigid eyes. It was however the dress she wore that brought awe to the young woman’s face. Few could wear such a garment without confidence, but this lady had it in spades. Dark red velvet traced over lithe curves faithfully with a snaking inset of ebon lace that curled up her body .

Glancing over at her companion, she was gratified to see a matching look of awe on Cieara’s expressive face as well. “Wow! Daddy would never let me wear something like that, but it looks smashing on Mum.”

“Ye mother is very lovely Cie.” And from the look of her, was another one not to trifle with. She now could confirm the distinct impression that this family was unusual and likely deadly if pushed. They were a very intimidating couple to behold.

“Well, we should get you back down there so Myri can introduce you. Would be safer, since if you run into Daddy, he won’t be worse then Danny was already.” She was already up and urging Kaelyn along with a laugh.

“Aye. I nae think I would want ye father glowering at me at all.” Remembering what she had witnessed in the yard earlier that day, she surely didn’t want any of that ferocity directed her way. Not even a smidgeon of it.

Once more she let Cieara take the lead, moving quickly down the stairs and back into the hall where she was yanked through a mob of bodies before reaching her sister once more.

“Oh good! I was hoping ye would come back when The Master and Lady arrived.” Myri grinned in delight and reached to take her sister’s hand. “Now, don’t ye worry, this will only take a moment.”

Again she was drawn across the room towards the dais and the couple chatting amicably there with a few others. “Lord Lucius Lady Fiona? This be my sister, Kaelyn Sybilla Vas Dailar.”

Instantly Kaelyn curtseyed with appropriate respect and offered a nervous little smile as both sets of eyes swung about and gazed at her. The effect of that make her knees shake a bit, but she reminded herself about all the things her sister and their daughter had said, and was delighted to see her fear fade.

Both then smiled, defusing some of that commanding presence both radiated equally and returned her nod with gracious welcomes. “Your very welcome to our home Kaelyn.” Said Lord Lucius.

“Aye, I am very sure ye will become more comfortable once ye have had a chance to settle in.” Lady Fiona commented with a faint touch of humor gleaming in her ice-frosted eyes. Her knowing look sent a faint blush rising up in Kaelyn’s pale face, suddenly aware that the lady knew what had happened with Daniel earlier and was amused.

“Thank ye Milord. I am also sure the Lady Fiona is correct. It be much to adjust to so quickly.” She was quite pleased, as her voice didn’t crack at all and that alone made her relax even further.

“I hear you’re a natural healer Kaelyn?” He commented while leaning his large frame back into the sturdy chair.

“Aye Milord.” She returned the smile with a twinkle of indigo eyes and her head bobbed.
At a look from his wife, he returned with an easy smile and a nearly unnoticeable shrug.

“I am sure we shall find a use for that, but we can talk about that another time. Run along now, and don’t let our daughter drag you into any trouble.”

The Lady then spoke in a voice only a few levels above that of her brother and smiled faintly. “I shall also speak with ye soon about training, as ye sister feels ye might be needing some.”

“Oh aye Milady.” Her indigo eyes just brightened and she nodded again. “Thank ye.”
That wasn’t at all bad, she thought as Myri led her away and she smiled happily at her sister. “See, I told ye it wouldn’t take long Kaely.”

“Aye, and they nae seem so scary now either Myri.” Her words holding a wealth of relief.

“Well, I be glad for that. They are nae scary at all, just have a very strong aura that many find difficult to handle.” Low laughter, then she was once more passing her sister back into Cieara’s care.

Taking the plate from Cie’s hand, she moved along with the other girl to a table where they sat down and ate, chatting easily even over the din of voices filling the large hall. Once she was done, she rose with the dish in her hand, but was halted by Cieara, who was looking at her oddly. “Oh leave the plate Kaely, the servants will pick it up.” Not even waiting however, she reached out a hand to taking it away from her with a grin.

“ I am nae used to that Cie” Kaelyn just gaped quietly for a moment for a moment then shook her head with a laugh. “Be this another thing I am to get used to?”

“Of course. We have servants for a reason. Need to leave something for them to earn their keep right . . . AHHhh! There he is!” Bouncing up to her feet, Cie wore a very wicked grin. “You wait right here Kaely!”

With one small hand lifting, she moved agily into the crowd waving madly and calling out to her brother. “Danny! Hey Danny!”

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