Rhoelyn: They all crouch in the empty stable stall. Rhoelyn whispers, “Relare checks on the hawkstrider stables daily before bed. He should be here soon.”
Araatris: Rhese settles back against the wall, muttering, “Yay.” He fingers the new tears in his sleeve, glaring at the hawkstrider in the next stall over.
Rhoelyn: Nysse peers anxiously out a crack in the door. “What about stablehands before then?” The nearby hawkstrider shifts uneasily at the sight of Tsume.
Araatris: “There is likely no risk of them coming in at this hour, unl-” Rhoe winces when a male and female voice can be heard outside the stable. “… unless… that.”
Rhoelyn: The huntress hisses, “Get down and stay quiet. They won’t bother an empty stall.” They duck into the shadows, avoiding the lantern light.
Araatris: As erratic footfalls come closer, Rhoelyn leans over and whispers in Rhese’s ear. Nysse’s eyes widen when both twins turn to look at her.
Rhoelyn: Rhese glances at the stall door as a woman laughs. He grabs her arm and starts urging her toward another stall. Nysse whispers, “We can’t!”
Araatris: He winces and glances at Tsume, then at Rhoe. She nods and covers her eyes as he surges at Nysse, shoving her against the stall door with a thud.
Rhoelyn: The huntress gasps. “W-what are you-” He catches her lips passionately, rattling the gate. In his thick Thalassian, “I’m serving my lady.”
Araatris: It’s not long at all before his effort elicits a telling “Mmm..!” from his mate, and the footsteps pause. “Ah…. let’s… look elsewhere, sweet.”
Rhoelyn: Rhese waits until their voices and footsteps fade to pull away from his breathless and flustered mate. She murmurs, “…What was that for?”
Araatris: “A very pleasant way to scare off trysting lovers,” he says happily. Rhoelyn peeps from between two fingers before she lowers her hands.
Rhoelyn: Nysse runs a hand through her messy hair as she processes. “T-they were going to- oh…Oh! I-I’m going to going sit in the corner for a moment…”
Araatris: “Nysse?” Rhoelyn asks softly, “Do you need m-” “N-no!” The huntress ducks behind Tsume as she waves Rhoe away. “No Silverwings. Just space.”
Rhoelyn: The huntress flops down and wraps her arms around Tsume, muffling a groan in the wolf’s fur. Rhese and Rhoe settle down on the side to wait.
Araatris: Rhoe’s gaze darts back to Nysse. “Brother,” she whispers, “I don’t think she appreciated that.” “I think she appreciated it too much,” he chuckles.
Rhoelyn: Nysse doesn’t raise her head again until she hears Relare’s voice. “…good boy. We’ll be ready to race you soon if you keep up the training.”
Araatris: Rhese stands first, glancing back at the other three as they get to their feet. He waves them back and slips out of the stall quietly.
Rhoelyn: Relare catches the slight motion and frowns. “Ayrmana and Breemar, I told you what I’d do if I caught you using the stalls for your… meetings.
Araatris: “They’ve already been frightened off, though you still might want to carry through with your promise.” The druid stalks out of the darkness.
Rhoelyn: “Rhese!” The paladin jerks in surprise and then glances about. “Leo, Wrune, and I have been waiting. We had no idea where you’d be.”
Araatris: “Mm.” The night elf watches him coolly as Rhoelyn pushes the stall door open, leading Nysse and Tsume out. She smiles at Relare.
Rhoelyn: Nysse murmurs, not meeting anyone’s eyes, “We shouldn’t stay here. Let’s set a location, and we can meet there instead. Will you be able to leave?”
Araatris: Relare nods. “I’ll get the others and meet you.” He thinks for a moment. “There’s a pond on the north side of the estate. It’s isolated and quiet.”
Rhoelyn: The huntress grumbles under her breath. “I hope it’s cold, too.” Relare raises an eyebrow at Rhese. The druid smirks. “We’ll see you there.”
Araatris: By the time the blood elves and the human ride up to the edge of the pond, Rhoelyn leans against Tsume’s side, weaving together wild clover.
Rhoelyn: The priestess pushes to her feet with a fond smile. “Leothir…” She clutches the clover tighter in her hands to hide her nervousness. “My dawn.”
Araatris: Slipping smoothly off his bird, the mage rushes over to her, sweeping her into his arms. “Rhoelyn! I was so worried when you weren’t with me.”
Rhoelyn: She rests her head on his shoulder. “I didn’t expect to be placed exactly where we were at this time. I didn’t know if you’d be at the manor.”
Araatris: Nysse takes Rhese’s hand, threading her fingers through his as he watches them, still. Leo smiles at Rhoelyn. “I wasn’t. But that’s easily fixed.”
Rhoelyn: Rhoelyn smiles in relief. “I’m thankful.” Leothir leans down and steals a brief kiss and Nysse wraps her other arm around Rhese’s as he growls.
Araatris: Relare and Wrune share a meaningful glance as they walk their mounts up to where Nysse and Rhese stand. Aron says, “Good evening, you two.”
Rhoelyn: “G-good evening.” Nysse nudges Rhese and he grumbles. “Rhese…” She continues to the other two men. “Is it safe to set up camp here?”
Araatris: The blood elf wrinkles his nose, and as Rhese finally drags his gaze away from his sister and her mate, he says, “We should get off the grounds.”
Rhoelyn: She nods. “We can go back to an’da’s camp until we know where to go. I think that Kaerryn may be our best bet to find out where to go.”
Araatris: The druid nods. “It’s getting late. We should get an hour or two between us and this pit of v-…” He sighs and grits out a smile. “… place.”
Rhoelyn: The huntress takes a deep breath. “Rhoe, ride with Leo. Rhese, cat. I’ll run and lead.” She turns and doesn’t wait for them before setting off.
Araatris: Shifting, the druid watches with a twitching tail as they get mounted, and then he sprints after Nysse, jogging beside her through the dark.
Rhoelyn: Nysse is on automatic, half-asleep as she’s running when someone tugs her arm. “…Nysse. Nysse, you can stop running.” She jerks fully awake.
Araatris: Her mate smirks at her in the dark, breathing hard. “You nearly lost me for a bit, there. Didn’t you hear Wrune call for a stop?”
Rhoelyn: “N-no, I don’t remember him saying anything.” Nysse frowns, glancing around to get her bearings. “I’m sorry. I must be more tired than I thought.”
Araatris: He slides his hand down her arm to claim her hand. “It’s fine, lovely. Let’s just get back. We can cool down with a walk.” Rhese tugs her.
Rhoelyn: Nysse follows, but finds her eyes wanting close even as she walks. She bumps into him several times on the way. “Why aren’t you this tired?”
Araatris: “Ow! Nysse…” When she steps on his foot, the druid grumbles and sweeps her into his arms. “I’m tired, surfal, but apparently not as tired as you.”
Rhoelyn: Rhese glances down with a sigh when she doesn’t respond, but drowses against his shoulder. Rhoelyn watches worriedly as he returns. “Brother?”
Araatris: He chuckles, glancing down at Tsume as she noses worriedly around his feet. “She’s just asleep. She wore herself out.” The priestess giggles.
Rhoelyn: Wrune blinks. “Was she running while asleep? Is that even possible?” Rhese kneels and with Rhoe’s help, tugs off her backpack. “Seems like it.”
Araatris: As he settles her against Tsume, Rhoelyn kneels beside her and brushes her hair back. “We’ll need to wake her when the food is ready.”
Rhoelyn: Rhese nods. “She can’t skip many.” Rhoelyn nods and retrieves the stuffed wolf from Nysse’s bag and tucks it into her arms. “Wrune is cooking.”
Araatris: Her brother gives the priestess an amused look as they step away to let her rest. “You really think she wants the stuffed toy?” Rhoe smiles.
Rhoelyn: She gestures behind her where Nysse has wrapped her arms around the toy. “I’d say… yes.” Relare looks up from his conversation and chuckles.
Araatris: The twins join the brothers on the far side of the fire, Rhese resting a fist on his hip. “Let’s get an early start in the morning,” he yawns.
Rhoelyn: Relare nods. “That’s a good idea. How much further is it to her father’s camp?” Wrune stirs the stew over the fire, half listening as he works.
Araatris: “If we make good time…” The druid tries not to frown as Leo steps up beside Rhoelyn, resting has hand on her arm. “Late tomorrow afternoon.”
Rhoelyn: Relare nods, watching Rhese’s face as Leo guides Rhoelyn to the fire and sits down. “Does it bother you that much that they like each other?”
Araatris: The druid sighs and rubs his hand over his face. “Before he knew she was my sister, Leothir told me two things: that he loved her and that (c)
Araatris: (c) he refused to let her go. Despite how desperately she wanted to.” He looks at Relare with a frown. “Tell me. What am I supposed to think?”
Rhoelyn: The paladin grimaces. “It’s a tricky story. He convinced them to let her out of prison as long as she was his slave, but I do think he cares.”
Araatris: “P… prison? Cenarius’ Beard!” Rhese blinks and watches them as Leo leans close and says something to her that earns a warm smile. “What a mess.”
Rhoelyn: The sin’dorei nods. “He wanted to make her happy. He gave her gardens, spent time with her. He constantly asked my advice…My brother is (c)
Rhoelyn: (c) not a bad person, but… he’s still learning how to show her he cares. She wouldn’t tell him why.” He looks pointedly at Rhese. “I’m guessing you.”
Araatris: “Me. And her entire life.” The druid folds his arms. “Rhoelyn is a priestess of Elune. She had duties and a calling that he kept her from.”
Rhoelyn: Sighing, Relare rubs his face. “I know. Things were… complicated, but it’s not an excuse. It’s why I don’t keep any myself. I’m sorry, Rhese.”
Araatris: The night elf’s shoulders round as he droops. “We’re all sorry, Relare. You two are… were… friends. Inasmuch as… FEH. It’s so confusing.”
Rhoelyn: “Then let’s make it simple.” Relare stands and grips Rhese’s shoulder. “Why don’t you sit and eat and tell us what happened before you found us?”
Araatris: “I can do that, and food sounds like a great idea.” The druid gives him a grin before they both head over. “Tomorrow, you meet my bondfather.”
Rhoelyn: Relare grins. “How did you like him? Did you explain everything to him?” They settle down by the fire as Wrune starts scooping bowls of stew.
Araatris: Rhese’s eyes widen. “N-no! Not even close. Whatever you do, don’t say anything to him about Nysse and I. Or Yami. Or… well, anything. He’ll skin me.”
Rhoelyn: That last part catches Rhoelyn’s attention. “Brother, did you do something to upset her father?” The druid winces. “No. He’s just… protective.”
Araatris: “Protective and perceptive.” Leo smirks at him. “Ah. He caught you two out, didn’t he?” At Rhese’s uncomfortable look, he chuckles. “He did.”
Rhoelyn: Relare grips Rhese’s shoulder. “We won’t give him a reason.” The druid runs a hand through his hair. “He might kill me anyway. I’m not sure.”
Araatris: “He probably won’t.” Nysse yawns as she shuffles up to them, rubbing her eye. Wrune smiles and hands her a bowl of stew. “Did you smell food?”
Rhoelyn: She takes the bowl. “Yes, it smelled delicious.” Nysse sits next to Rhese. “It’s not like he’s ever seen me… near another man…” She blushes.
Araatris: The druid leans over and kisses her cheek between bites of food. “That is perfectly acceptable to me,” he says. Rhoelyn giggles. “Poor Nysse.”
Rhoelyn: “An’da is a sweet, kind man. As long as Tsume likes you, then he won’t hurt you too bad.” Nysse smiles at them, then digs back into her food.
Araatris: “Ah, so the pup is the key.” Leothir grins and eyes Tsume as she pads around, sniffing. “I’ll have to work to get fonder of that… canine smell.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse narrows her eyes. “My wolf smells better than your stupid, rotting, oversized chicken.” Relare’s eyes widen. “I raised that hawkstrider!”
Araatris: Rhese snorts out a laugh, nearly choking on his dinner. As Rhoelyn pats his back, Leo sniffs. “Felora had a bath just today, thank you. And Tsume?”
Rhoelyn: “Tsume swam in the pond while we were waiting for you.” Nysse scratches her wolf behind the ears. “Don’t worry, girl. I know you don’t stink.”
Araatris: “I’m sure that wolfish musk grows on one. I meant no offense, Tsume.” Rhoelyn giggles and pats his arm. “You aren’t helping yourself, dear one.”
Rhoelyn: The wolf nips at his sleeve. Nysse laughs as Tsume stares expectantly at him. “You’d better make it up to her before we see an’da, Leothir.”
Araatris: The mage and the wolf stare at each other for a few long heartbeats before he leans over to Rhoelyn and stage-whispers, “What does she want?”
Rhoelyn: Nysse stares incredulously as Rhoelyn directs Leothir to rub behind the ears. After a minute, Tsume huffs and lays her head in his lap.
Araatris: Rhese teasingly gives the wolf a flat stare. “Well. Apparently, she’s not very choosy about who she likes.” Leo gives him a flat stare back.
Rhoelyn: The huntress yawns toothily, setting her second bowl to the side. “Can we get some rest, surfal?” Rhese chuckles. “As you wish, my lovely.”
Araatris: Her request gets everyone moving, and before too long the camp is quiet and drowsy. Tsume lays at the edge of the firelight, keeping watch.
Rhoelyn: Later the next day, Nysse is nervously approaching the camp. “An’da is going to kill me. I’m bringing four men into his camp and two are sin’dorei!”
Araatris: “At least he has already met one of them,” Rhoelyn points out softly, glancing back at where Rhese pads along beside Tsume. “And you have me.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse nods jerkily and grasps Rhoelyn’s hand for comfort as they close in. Sarren stands, watching them with a frown. Nysse waves. “An’da!”
Araatris: “Nysse!” He strides over, stopping before her and her companion. He pauses before grabbing his daughter. “You were supposed to be back last night.”
Rhoelyn: The huntress ducks her head. “I tried, but I was asleep on my feet. We had to sleep first.” Rhoelyn smiles gently. “We were worried about her.”
Araatris: Sarren’s attention swings to Rhoe at her words, and he looks her up and down once before nodding his head politely. “Priestess.” She smiles.
Rhoelyn: “I am Rhoelyn Silverwing. Your daughter has been very helpful.” Sarren nods. “I’m sure. I hope you don’t mind if I have a word her… alone.”
Araatris: “Of course not,” exchanging a last glance with Nysse, she gestures. “My friends and I will wait for you.” She pats Nysse’s arm as she walks off.
Rhoelyn: Sarren watches Rhoelyn before turning to his daughter. “Nyssera Whispersong, I don’t know what has gotten into you.” He grasps her shoulders.
Araatris: The young huntress blushes and lowers her eyes. “An’da, I’m really sorry. We tried to hurry. There… are things going on that are hard to explain.”
Rhoelyn: “Nysse, what would your mother say if she knew you were…,” at her horrified expression, he pauses, “…relating to a man that you barely knew.”
Rhoelyn: He looks over her shoulder. “I don’t like the look of their friends. Sin’dorei? I’m worried that you’re getting involved with a bad crowd…”
Araatris: “I-I… an’da, w-w-we… R-Rhese is…” At his expression, she chickens out. “H-he’s doing an important job for the Cenarion Circle. They’re his team.”
Rhoelyn: Sarren’s voice takes on a rare edge. “The sin’dorei don’t work with them. Your physical relationship is getting in the way of common sense.”
Araatris: Eyes wide, she blushes to the tips of her ears before burying her face in her hands. “T-that’s not it, an’da! I… we’ll tell you everything.”
Rhoelyn: “Good. And you’d better not lie to me again, Nyssera.” Sarren grasps her upper arm and pulls the mortified young woman with him to the others.
Araatris: Wincing, Rhese steps forward to meet them. “I take it the talk didn’t go so well?” His attempt at lightheartedness withers under Sarren’s scowl.
Rhoelyn: Nysse stammers, “R-rhese, I p-promised we’d tell him every-everything.” Rhese swallows nervously and nods. “Of course, lo-Nysse. Shall we sit?”
Araatris: Her father “hmphs” and gestures to the fire, where Kaerryn still rests, bound and gagged. “Let’s do that.” He tugs Nysse along as he turns away.
Rhoelyn: Rhese shares a look with the others. Nysse waits until they’ve settled down and begins explaining to her father who silently listens to them.
Araatris: At the end of a long tale, Sarren Whispersong grimaces and scrubs his face with his hands. “My little star… you realize how insane that sounds?”
Rhoelyn: Nysse captures one of his hands. “It’s true, an’da!” Sarren hugs her as she sniffles. “It’s a lot to take in, and I’m no less worried…”
Araatris: His daughter looks up at him, teary-eyed, “But you understand now, at least? Rhese and Rhoelyn are my family, too. It … wasn’t…. j-just…”
Rhoelyn: Sarren grimaces, glancing at Rhese. “I understand, little star. No more tears.” He kisses her forehead and pushes her hair out of her face.
Araatris: Rhese speaks up, uncharacteristically tentative. “It seemed like a good idea at the time to leave you in the dark. But I apologize for lying.”
Rhoelyn: The hunter sighs. “I’d rather you hadn’t, but… you’re forgiven. I hope you’ll understand that it’s not easy for me to just let go of Nysse.”
Araatris: Nodding, Rhese steps forward and sets a hand on Nysse’s shoulder. “I understand that very well, Sarren. We’ve all been family… somewhere.”
Rhoelyn: Her father nods and then reluctantly nudges Nysse toward Rhese. “Go on, little star. I need a few minutes to think. I’ll be back after I patrol.”
Araatris: The two of them watch Sarren head off, and Rhese looks down at his love. “Is he… going to be okay? It’s a lot to take in, suddenly.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse bites her lip. “I think so. He just needs time.” She clutches her hands in her lap, wringing them anxiously. “I wish I knew what to do.”
Araatris: Rhoelyn joins the two of them and softly says, “Give him the time he needs, and all will be well. Come, we need to see to Kaerryn. She has woken.”
Rhoelyn: Rhese nods and tugs Nysse up. “Let’s see if can get some answers.” They join the brothers and Wrune over by the warrior. “Hello, Kaerryn.”
Araatris: The woman glares out from beneath her chestnut hair, straining. “Release me. I have work to do.” Her gaze goes to Nysse with hungry intent.
Rhoelyn: Nysse grimaces. “Maybe I should step away. I’m not sure that being here is going to help.” Rhese sighs, “Stay. Kaerryn, who sent you?”
Araatris: The human straightens, her pride and fervent devotion forced on her as she says, “I serve the Machine, the will that will remake this world.”
Rhoelyn: Wrune crouches down in front of her. “Did the Machine tell you where to find Nysse?” Kaerryn scowls. “No, we’ve been searching for the Mother.”
Araatris: “The uncalled man told me where she would be, and when.” She looks at Nysse. “Even he understood your great destiny, Mother. Can’t you see?”
Rhoelyn: “No, I can’t. Who were you before this? Don’t you want your life back? Before this uncalled man- what was his name?” Nysse grabs Rhese’s hand.
Araatris: Wrune and Relare exchange looks as the woman’s brow furrows at Nysse’s questions. Kaerryn shudders. “The man said his name was Tadanir.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse bites her lip and kneels in front of the warrior, releasing Rhese. “Tadanir isn’t trying to help you. We need to find him. Can you help?”
Araatris: “I… I don’t care about the uncalled, Mother.” The human winces. “I need to get you back to the warren. Others will come to escort us, soon.”
Rhoelyn: The huntress shakes her head, “Tadanir is planning to destroy the warren. The others should protect it. We need to stop him before I go.”
Araatris: Kaerryn’s eyes widen before they narrow angrily. “He wouldn’t dare. I’ll take his head off.” Leo frowns and quietly says, “I don’t like this.”
Rhoelyn: Relare nods grimly. “She’s going to make a run with Nysse if we give any leeway. If she’s already given our location, we need to move camp.”
Araatris: “Tadanir is a threat, Kaerryn,” Nysse continues as they discuss it. “Tell us how to find him.” The human growls, “He wanted to meet us in Telaar.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse smiles grimly. “Then we should go there and take care of the threat, don’t you think so?” Rhese leans forward and whispers in Nysse’s ear.
Araatris: At the huntress’ tiny nod, he turns and darts off, shifting. The warrior glances around at the others. “We? Have you called these to our cause?”
Rhoelyn: “Of course. Rest here while we make preparations.” The huntress pats her shoulder and walks to Wrune, speaking softly, “Keep an eye on her please.”
Araatris: He nods, watching her grimly. As she walks over to the others, Kaerryn raises her voice, squirming, “Hey! You’re not going to untie me? Mother?!”
Rhoelyn: Nysse looks over her shoulder. “That’s your punishment for listening to Tadanir. Be glad it isn’t more severe.” She sits stiffly at the fire.
Araatris: Rhoelyn settles at her side and rests a hand on her arm. “Sister,” she says, her voice pitched low. “The orb’s will fills her like an infection.”
Rhoelyn: “I thought it’d fade, but she must have had it too long. Is there anything we can do? I’d rather not have her like… that.” Nysse grits her teeth.
Araatris: Rhoelyn’s kind blue eyes take on an uncommon hard edge as she looks at the warrior, the captive grumbling and yanking at her bonds. She sighs.
Rhoelyn: The priestess clenches her fists tightly. “If you really think it’s right, I’ll try, sister, but Kaerryn is not a good woman even freed.”
Araatris: Nysse wraps her hands around one of her sister’s tight fists. “This made her that bitter, cruel person she was at Swelltide. We can help her.”
Rhoelyn: Rhoelyn closes her eyes and takes a deep breath. Nysse murmurs, “I am not proud of it, but I wanted to blame her for the death of an’da and Tsume.”
Rhoelyn: “I tried to kill her, Rhoelyn. It wasn’t the right thing to do nor is leaving her under the control of the orb. It… it consumes you,” Nysse admits.
Araatris: “We… mustn’t let her be consumed, then,” the priestess relents. “I will try to remember that this is not yet the woman who murdered my friend.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse hugs her. “Thank you. I’ll sit with you while you work. Perhaps it’ll help us both, sister.” The huntress gives her a shy kiss on the cheek.
Araatris: Rhoelyn blushes softly and takes Nysse’s hand as they return to stand before Kaerryn. The warrior eyes Rhoe warily. “Why is she here?”
Rhoelyn: Nysse gestures to Relare and Wrune to hold Kaerryn. “I need to ensure that Taladir hasn’t done anything to my guardian. I suggest you cooperate.”
Araatris: Kaerryn nods, watching with a little frown as Rhoelyn kneels in front of her, her blue eyes taking on a hint of gold as she examines the human.
Rhoelyn: After a few minutes, Rhoelyn sends a thread of pulsing magic to the warrior. The woman groans and shakes her head as Nysse sits next to Rhoe.
Araatris: The smaller night elf whispers under her breath as she concentrates, her gaze searching Kaerryn’s face. “Ah,” she murmurs, “there you are.”
Rhoelyn: Kaerryn cries out, straining against her bindings and the men holding her arms. “Stop it! STOP IT!” Rhoe murmurs, “One more broken strand…”
Araatris: The priestess reaches out and catches the human’s jaw between her glowing hands, holding her head still as she strains and curses.
Rhoelyn: Nysse grits her teeth and clenches her fists, but forces herself to watch. The warrior cries out once more and her eyes roll back as she slumps.
Araatris: Relare and Wrune go from restraining the warrior to supporting her, and soon Rhoelyn sits back, the magic fading between them. She exhales slowly.
Rhoelyn: The huntress ventures softly, “Do you think it worked?” Sarren and Rhese watch silently from next to Leo. Wrune and Relare lay Kaerryn down.
Araatris: Rhoelyn glances up at the others before turning to Nysse. “I believe so, sister, but it’s difficult to be sure. We must see when she wakes.”
Rhoelyn: “Then we wait.” The green-haired young woman nods and heads back to the fire. Turning her back to it, Nysse buries her face in Tsume’s fur.
Araatris: Relare leaves Kaerryn to Wrune as he settles her into a blanket. “We still need to move,” he says with the air of someone used to giving orders.
Rhoelyn: Rhese nods. “Leave Kaerryn to rest as long as possible, but we’ll pack up camp.” He glances at Sarren who nods. The druid heads to Nysse.
Araatris: “Dalah’surfal?” he prompts softly, crouching beside her and resting a hand on her shoulder. He doesn’t say more, just waits patiently for her.
Rhoelyn: Rhese hits his knees as she pulls him off balance and clings to him. She murmurs, “Going back under the orbs stirred everything back up.”
Araatris: He wraps his arms around her, pressing a kiss against her hair. “You aren’t alone, Nysse. You aren’t unprepared, this time. You can fight back.”
Rhoelyn: “I know, but… I’m still terrified. For me. For you. For everyone. They could be bringing more orbs.” She turns her tear-streaked face up to his.
Araatris: Rhese smiles gently and brushes tears from her cheek with his knuckles. “You asked me, once, if I resisted the orbs, my lovely. You remember?”
Araatris: She sniffs and nods. “You said they didn’t want you.” He nods. “I didn’t tell you why, though. I didn’t mention we found a way to shatter them.”
Rhoelyn: Her eyes widen, and she stammers, “S-Shatter? I thought they couldn’t be broken!” Her mate tucks her hair behind her ear. “We found it by accident.”
Araatris: Rhese leans down to kiss her cheek, continuing, “It’s a really long story, but it’s related to why Rhoe is here already instead of in Nighthaven.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse stares at Rhoe. “She can break them?” The druid nods. “The orbs don’t respond well to Light magic. Wrune and Relare probably could as well.”
Araatris: His sister looks over at them from across the camp to find Nysse’s wide eyes on her, and she blinks and offers an uncertain grin. Rhese chuckles.
Rhoelyn: The huntress blushes and ducks, burying her face against Rhese’s shoulder. “So, even if an orb does get me, we’ll stop it again? What about you?”
Araatris: “I have enough stubbornness for both of us, love. I won’t let them have you.” He squeezes her. “Rhoe and your father and I would never allow it.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse wipes her eyes. “Y-you’re right. It’s not the same this time.” She takes a deep breath, before smiling and leaning forward to kiss him.
Araatris: Leo nudges Rhoe as she blushes and glances away from them, scolding gently, “Nosy flower.” She grins. “Well. I am still getting used to it.”
Rhoelyn: Sarren speaks up from behind them. “It’s a lot to get used to. A few days ago my daughter would have hurt any man that touched her like that.”
Araatris: The priestess turns to him. “I am sorry, Sarren. You’ve had even less time to get accustomed to it. Do you feel the pull as we do?”
Rhoelyn: The night elven man’s lips quirk up as he chuckles. “Your brother is still alive. I believe that is answer enough for me regardless of any pull.”
Araatris: “Oh, the stories I-” Rhoelyn elbows him in the ribs, and Leothir chuckles. “He punched me. I really do deserve a bit of revenge, you know.”
Rhoelyn: Sarren grimaces. “I’m not ready to have my suspicions confirmed.” Rhoelyn places a hand on his arm. “They really love each other.” “I know.”
Araatris: The priestess smiles as she shoves her blanket into her satchel. “Then all is well. Elune knows, many problems are solved by that alone.”
Rhoelyn: Nodding, he clicks and a dark brown wolf slips from the shadows behind him. “I’m glad she’s found someone.” Sarren hefts his bag over his shoulder.
Araatris: Relare steps up to the rest of them, leading his hawkstrider and Wrune’s charger as the other paladin checks on Kaerryn. “Are you nearly ready?”
Rhoelyn: The hunter answers first, “Yes, I’ll get our sabers.” He pauses, frowning. “Your hawkstriders won’t be skittish around large cats, will they?”
Araatris: The paladin can’t resist his little, proud predatory grin. “Oh, no. They may be a little aggressive, though. They’re trained for battle.”
Rhoelyn: Sarren grins. “Then we won’t have to worry about the nightsabers having them for dinner.” Chuckling, he collects the sabers and heads to Nysse.
Araatris: Nysse is helping Rhese get his pack on when her father stops beside them. One of the sabers growls at Rhese, and the druid smirks. “Ready?”
Rhoelyn: The other saber nuzzles into Nysse’s arms. Sarren nods, “Yeah, it’s time. Shall I assume you’re riding with Nysse?” The huntress blushes brightly.
Araatris: Rhese blinks and looks between him and Nysse. “Um… yes? If… that is…” She takes his hand as he flounders and manages to address her father.
Rhoelyn: “A-an’da! Stop giving him a hard time. You know he’s riding with me.” She swings up on her grey mistsaber and holds out her arm for Rhese. “Come on.”
Araatris: The druid grins and swings up behind her with something resembling an apologetic look for her father. “Anything my lady wishes,” he says.
Rhoelyn: Sarren climbs onto his own saber, chuckling. “As you wish, little star, but I had to suffer the same indignities when I courted your mother.”
Araatris: As the sabre pads off, Rhese winces and leans down by her ear, whispering, “I don’t think I’m equipped to deal with your father, my lovely.”
Rhoelyn: Nysse mumbles as she twists, “He’s teasing you. He should ease up once he gets used to all this.” Unable to resist, she steals another kiss.
Araatris: “There’s no tent out here!” Leo practically shouts it as the kiss gets long, and Rhoelyn gasps and tries to put a hand over his big mouth.
Rhoelyn: Nysse and Rhese break apart, flushed. The huntress quickly urges her mount ahead of the others and onto the path to Telaar. Leo grins smugly.
WoD Arc – Chapter 23
Rhoelyn: They all crouch in the empty stable stall. Rhoelyn whispers, “Relare checks on the hawkstrider stables daily before bed. He should be here soon.”