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Author Topic: stabbing westward  (Read 472 times)

Description: Attn: Abbadon/Lucky/Kaderian

Offline Tavar al-Sabbah

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stabbing westward
« on: Apr 14, 18, 04:27:46 PM »
Spring 193- the edge of Onn


Fin could tarry no longer. It was time to return to Askavi.

The days leading up to their departure were spent with the family he’d created. Shadya was still furious with him, but she’d broken down in his arms and cried before the Sabbah left Onn. She demanded that he return to them, seconded by Amira, who was even more forceful on the subject than her prickly little sister. Fin swore to his nieces that he would do everything possible to return home. He had not found good men to take care of them or give them beautiful children that he could spoil rotten, he reminded them, earning groans and eyerolls from both women. He’d watched them sleep that evening, remembering the first time he held them in his arms on the nights they were born.

Shadya had Farrah’s look while Amira had her soul. Both women carried his late wife’s blood in their veins and Fin vowed that he would return home to protect the water of their lines until his final day came. He’d spent time with Elenor and Judiah and asked them to watch over both his nieces and each other. He asked of Elenor, once more, that she protect herself and their people. He’d asked the same of his bond-brothers, all of them, regardless of their previous relationships. Some things were more important that personal disagreements. 

He’d shaken hands with Prince Omid, who made a request that Fin did not expect.

Please watch over Prince Lucky. I know that he’s wanted this since he was very young. I know he thinks it will make him whole somehow. Maybe it will. But he must come back, Lord Fin. For the sake of our sisters, of course.” Omid said, full of dignity and purpose. Fin recognized the subtext of Omid’s request, even if the Red Prince would not speak it aloud.

I will see that he returns home to your sisters, Prince Bali. May Clan Bali prosper during their travels.” Fin said.

And may you prosper as well, Lord Fin.

He’d talked things over with Abbadon and Lucky. He’d also gone to Kaderian and explained his idea to her. He escorts weren’t pleased and they made it known, vocally and otherwise, but Fin was adamant. He would not rile the sandworms with Craft use and he would not force Abbadon to travel alone or stay behind. Even if he could, he knew that the young man would refuse on principle. The idea of meeting Drakkar was entrenched in his mind. Fin would not take it from him, even if he worried about the long-term effects.

Lucky was still angry with him about the vote and merely assented to the plan without comment.

That quiet acceptance worried Fin far more than any diatribe Lucky could have launched into. The Sabbah had left early in the day. Fin spent the rest of the time checking his weapons and, finally, going to locate the chest in which he kept his father’s bones. Preserved in Craft-enhanced cloth and layered with preservation and protection spells that had taken Fin decades to wring from various people, Fin would give Drakkar what he needed to make peace with Valar Andros’s death. Fin had made peace with it as best he could, but he’d had two centuries. Drakkar had not.

Her wore a leather jerkin made to accommodate his wings and dark breeches. His silver vambraces, engraved with the symbol of Clan Sabbah, were strapped to his forearms. His daggers and sword were strapped to his waist. He’d agreed to meet them all at the edge of town and now he waited there, speaking with a Raejian trader about news from around the realm. Fin wished to discuss the more interesting tidbits with Elenor, but that would have to wait for another day, when he could return home to his clan without the cloud of Askavi hanging over them.

He waited for the others to arrive and hoped that Lucky and Abbadon were not long in arriving.

Kaderian’s escorts would test his patience before the day was out. He just knew it.



Offline Kaderian Yrisia

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #1 on: Apr 26, 18, 02:52:59 PM »
While stuck in Onn for the month, she'd found ways to alter some local dresses to allow for her wings to not feel.. constrained.  But now that they were going to be on their way?  She'd packed those few  things away and returned to wearing the simple clothing she usually wore at Camp.  Dark breeches, dark tunic, a few leather ties for her hair to keep it out of her face, and a small bag to carry useful things without them having to be in her cabinet.

Ulamar was happy to be going home.. and furious about how slow they would be in achieving that.  She simply let him argue at her.  At her, of course, because it didn't mean she was going to let him sway her. 

"Ulamar.. the male has agreed to come back to Askavi peaceably.  He is bringing people of interest to our Territory.  We are dealing with a diplomatic nightmare.  Shut. Up."  She finally spoke those words as they drew closer to the appropriate place.  Finally set in stone, as it were, the lines between her control and his allowances. 

Perhaps she was too flexible with the males - perhaps she should have controlled them more strictly during all of this.  It didn't matter, in the end.  She'd found the target, she was bringing him back.  HOW she did that was ultimately up to her, and if Drakkar disapproved he could take the Price out of her hide.  Which.. essentially.. was what she had told all of the Hunters.

Seeing 'him' there though.. it had her shoulders tensing up.  She'd spoken with his Queen of course.  Worse, his Queen had realized something she'd kept all living souls in the world from realizing - and she had a great deal of hope that the female had not told him.  Likely futile hope.

The last thing she wanted was for any false sympathy to come out of that male's traitorous mouth.  She took a deep breath, stepping forward towards Tavar.  Fin.  Whatever the hell he was.

"Lord Sabbah."  She inclined her head, keeping her eyes on him anyways.  "I assume you will be ready to leave when the others arrive?"

We should just take him and go.
Ulamar.. if you test me, I will ensure your wings do not work the entire way home.  Keep. Your. Mouths. Shut.  Do not allow the others to start trouble.  I will not, and I repeat.. I will not tolerate it.

Offline Abaddon al-Sabbah

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #2 on: May 10, 18, 03:14:19 PM »
Abaddon had received Ghaniima's leave to understake this journey, as she would have a journey of her own.  It troubled him to leave her side, but she would not be unattended, and his Queen intuitively understood that the Black Widow Warlord Prince forever bound to her had something to settle in Askavi.  A past to seek out and lay to rest before he could turn his eyes exclusively to the future.  Abaddon had little in the way of farewells to make; Ghanima was his primary concern, but in the time between the death of The Spider and the advent of his trip, he had rediscovered his sister, Ana.  She was only recently returned to his life, and he had so few that he considered family, that he regretted having to leave her behind.  Abaddon trusted her strength, but there would be enough for him to do in Askavi, without his instincts drawing in Ana as well.

With his farewells behind him, Abaddon focused on the journey ahead.  He had hunted people into the wilderness before, out into the desert where Craft and its use were deadly mistakes.  He had a Sabbah horses loaded with what he thought a man alone might need, though he was sure that Fin would have planned the expedition down to the last drop of water.  Abaddon could not help but come personally prepared, he had done so without thinking much about it.  He realized he was far more used to journeying into the desert on his own, in pursuit of quarry, than with any sort of company or companionship.  In fact, this would be his first signifcant journey with people not somehow filtered by his Father.

Abaddon was not the first.  Kaderian and her entourage was there before him.  He walked up to where Fin stood, releasing the horse with a psychic request that the beast not wander too far off in the search for something to clip with his teeth.  The Black Widow Warlord Prince quietly walked up behind Fin, and stood behind him and slightly to his left, clear of any blade that might be drawn, or wings that might suddenly be put to use.  He inclined his head to Kaderian very slightly, and let his golden eyes drift over her Eyrien escort.  If he was impressed, or intimidated, or otherwise moved by the sight, nothing of it showed upon his face, or in his stance.  Abaddon reached out, gripped Fin's shoulder, and kept silent, at least for the moment.  There as agitation there, irritation, even anger, and he could senseit.  It rubbed at his skin, like a cat being pet in the wrong direction, and just like a cat, he did not like it.

Offline Lucky al-Izar

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #3 on: Jun 03, 18, 09:37:22 PM »
Lucky al-Izar circled in the air, letting the wind hit his face with a fevered giddiness.

Askavi.

He didn’t care much about this bastard Finn worried about. All he cared about was making sure the Voice of the Sabbah didn’t get his balls ripped off and seeing as much of Askavi as he possibly could. The mountains. The trees. Lakes. Everything that Pruul wasn’t. He believed, ever since he was young enough to look up into Gunnar’s eyes and hear his stories, that his true home was in Askavi. Even with all that had happened in Pruul, a part of him still believed it.

Landing hard in the sand, a plum of dust came up from his feet as he turned his gaze to Abaddon, Fin, and the rest of their party. He greatly wanted to spar with the Eyrien guards, testing his strength against theirs, and he very much wanted to fuck the Eyrien woman. His eyes ran up and down her body curiously and his dark scarred wings twitched. This would be a long trip across the desert. Perhaps there would be time.

The Warlord Prince put his fingers to his mouth and whistled, Little Brother galloping up, his long main jumping in the wind. “We just going to stand here until this Drakkar fucks us in the ass? Let’s get to Askavi. I have some diplomatic relations to begin.” His eyes ran over Kaderian again before he turned his attention to Fin in earnest.

As a newly elected ruler of Pruul, he fully intended to increase relations between Askavi and Pruul—in no small part because Lucky admired the territory greatly. He had spoken to Ro and Hadj about it, gathered some ideas. Now just to leave.

Offline Tavar al-Sabbah

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #4 on: Jun 14, 18, 10:10:12 AM »
Yes, Lady Yrisia. Once Prince Sabbah and Prince Izar arrive, we’ll head head west until we reach the mountains.” Fin said, his black flaring out proudly, before tucking closely to his back. His brass pauldron gleamed on his left shoulder, while his vambraces shined from hours of careful attention. “My intention is to enter through Living Lake Province, seek refuge there for an evening, and then make our way to Gravesend.”

Fin’s eyes tracked her escorts from left to right. Lord Ulamar stared him down. The man had been spoiling for a fight ever since Fin laid eyes upon him. His face was familiar to Fin, though he was certain they’d never met. Only when he heard Ulamar’s surname of Telenov, did Fin recall a man from his unit by the name of Jindar Telenov, a Blood Seeker with a taste for rape and murdering children.

Fin had taken pleasure in watching Jindar bleed out from a Hayllian woman’s knife.

Fin’s mood lightened some when Abbadon and Lucky arrived. He no longer felt like he was fully in the presence of enemies, standing there at the edge of Onn. He knew that Abbadon had his back, but relations were still tense between him and Lucky. Between Lucky’s lusting after his Queen and the Fin’s vote against the Mineborn Council, there was much daylight between himself and the young man he’d trained. Fin had known, when casting his vote, what the result would be and he’d accepted that Lucky’s anger was the price for attempting to help him live the life that was stolen from him by the Geiba first, then Adramelech.

Yet a small voice in Fin’s head told him to tell Lucky to get the fuck over it.

Fin ignored that voice, though not easily.

Abbadon, Lucky, good to see you both. As I’ve told our escorts, we’ll heading toward the mountains.” Fin said, pointing toward the mountains in the distance.

We’ll enter through Living Lake Province, where I was born, and seek the hospitality of that province’s ruler for a night before we head to Gravesend. Gravesend is the true test, but as long as we rely on Protocol to guide us, we should reach the other side of this with no issue.

All told, this shouldn't take more than a few weeks to resolve.
” Fin said, looking at the assembled. He was careful with his language, for he didn’t know how vicious Drakkar would be in his anger. There was real possibility that Fin wasn’t coming back from this. Two Sapphires and a Red were a powerful trio, but the leader of the Blood Seekers wore the Red and was backed by thousands of warriors. Fin would not allow Abbadon or Lucky to come to harm.

He watched Lucky eye Kaderian with undisguised lust and bit his tongue. He hoped Kaderian would restrain herself in this case. Lucky and Abbadon already shared a Queen. He didn’t think that the bond between the two men would tolerate sharing much more.

Now that we’re all here, we should get moving. I’d like to have Onn well behind us before days end. Refrain from using Craft in the desert.” he said, more for Kaderian’s people than for Lucky and Abbadon. They didn’t need sandworms getting their trail.

They group headed out, stopping at regular intervals to make sure that everyone was still of good health, if not good cheer. When they were moving once more, some time after mid-day, Fin looked Kaderian.

Lady Yrisia, who is the ruler of Living Lake Province is these days? I remember Lady Tennian from my youth, but I don’t know if she survived the Purge.” Fin said.

I want to know who I’m dealing with before I walk in there.



Offline Kaderian Yrisia

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #5 on: Jun 14, 18, 12:09:43 PM »
It was clear, as she watched everyone watching each other, that this was going to be a long and taxing trip.  Abaddon was watching her as if she were a threat - and amusing as that was, it was agitating.  She was not a threat to Abaddon al-Sabbah.. at least not unless he did something truly stupid. 

Then there was Ulamar.  Ulamar was by far the worst of her Hunters when it came to disguising his bloodlust.  She supposed she couldn't entirely blame him - his brother had served with Tavar.  But still..  She flexed her jaw, her wings closing tightly about her shoulders as she took a few deep breaths to force some of the tension out of her muscles.

It wouldn't work long, but it would likely help.  Someone needed to not be ready to pull blades.  Especially as the new Warlord Prince to join them looked at her with a look that was all too reminiscent of the young.  It had a small smile playing on her lips.  The last time a young Warlord Prince had eyed her so obviously, Drakkar had almost gutted them.

Of course, that young Warlord Prince had been doing it while she was piecing one of their Blood Seekers back together, and had been distracting.  She raised an eyebrow, and then looked at Abaddon before chuckling.  "Hello, Prince."  It was almost a purr.  Almost.

Lady Yrisia.. who is the ruler of Living Lake Province these days?

She listened to his question, that warm amusement that Abaddon caused in her draining away as she turned her face towards Tav... Fin.    "You have been gone a very long time."  She said it quietly.  "Lady Tennian is gone, along with many others.  Living Lake is tended by its Steward, Vondar Shostakov."   She twitched her wings a little, closing her eyes.  "He was made Wingless in a battle against Hayll, if the rumors are true."

She licked at her lips, forcing her eyes open to look at him with what she hoped was a more neutral expression.  "When we cross into Askavi, I'll be certain to let him know we would like to seek his blessings for hospitality.  An escort from the Seekers should not be long once we enter the borders." 

Shouldn't be, but.. with the Jhinka threat?  It was possible they'd be busy.  Her eyes moved to Lucky, a hand touching her hip.  "A word of caution?  The Jhinka are.. dangerous.  Even to those blessed in the Darkness and Warlord Princes.  If we tell you to put your backs together, do so.  They are rarely in small numbers."  Her brow furrowed, eyes peering curiously at Abaddon and Lucky.  "If we are fortunate, we will not run into them.  Still.. better to plan for an unfortunate journey than one blessed by something as fickle as luck."

Offline Abaddon al-Sabbah

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #6 on: Jun 18, 18, 10:03:01 AM »
Abaddon saw no threat in Kaderian, but her escort was another matter, and he could feel their agitation and even their anger.  It would only take one of their number to start a fight, and waste water better saved for the journey ahead.  They were likely a bit sore about his absconding with their Healer, but they should have been more careful, or they should have convinced her to be.  He kept Fin’s warning in mind, regarding the ferocity of an Eyrien warrior, but he had spent a lifetime being trained by one, and while one’s Darkness was not everything, it was still something, and Abaddon was at least half-Eyrien, with those instincts, and that of his Castes.  He was volatile at the best of times, which this was not.

Lucky’s appearance proved a brief distraction, as did his lack of Protocol, but they were supposed to be among friends, except for the Eyrien contingent.  It did little to smooth the perceived rough edges in the moment, and risked escalating them, based on how he eyed not only the winged Males, but Kaderian as well.  He nodded when Fin addressed him, and listened with half an ear to the path of their journey.  Abaddon already knew how they would be traveling, he and Fin had discussed it already.  He would be forced to keep an eye on the Eyriens, and make sure they did not use Craft that could doom them all.  He had the advantage of a long reach, and might well be able to throw himself into the Winds, but then where would he land?  It was not a good option, but rather a desperate one.

Abaddon could sense that one of Kaderian’s men was particularly agitated, even spoiling for a fight.  It rose from him like blood on the breeze, his psychic scent abrading Abaddon’s skin like a poorly made shirt.  He regarded the man, and then caught Fin’s eye, sending him a brief spear thread, *If that one is going to be trouble, it will mean Craft.  Craft in the desert could get us all killed.  Perhaps he should be made an example of now.*  It was not friendly, but it was direct and tactically sound.  That fellow’s anger threatened to boil over now, Abaddon had sensed it on his arrival, and he did not think Kaderian could control her party anymore than they could control her.

Offline Tavar al-Sabbah

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #7 on: Jun 28, 18, 03:07:31 PM »
Fin was saddened to hear that Lady Tennian Varsoth had perished. Fin saw her once, in his youth, and imagined being bound to a Queen like her. She smiled a small smile to himself as he thought of what his life would be and how his life had turned out. He did not regret Elenor, or his nieces, or Abbadon, or Lucky. But he now understood that life took its own course rather than the one you wished for it to have. He returned his mind to the discussion at hand, focused upon the new ruler of Living Lake.

He survived the loss of his wings? That’s...that is a feat.” Fin said, feeling sorry for the man. He’d known warriors who’d part with both jewels without blinking, but balked at the idea of losing their wings. Even if they couldn’t fly afterward, they still had wings. Fin couldn’t even think about losing his wings. The very thought took his mind to a dark place. Instead, Fin set that aside and listened as one of Kaderian’s escorts, Pagnar, spoke up.

The so-called Steward wears the Gray, but he knows that he only rules because Prince Kurlov hasn’t taken the seat from him. But when Prince Estaorth gives the word, Prince Kurlov will take control of the Province and Shostakov will step aside. Or he will be dealt with.” Pagnar said. Ulamar and the others spoke in agreement. Fin remained silent, just in time to hear Abbadon’s thread to him.

Abbadon had a point. If not dealt with now, the man would be insufferable by the time they reached the mountains. Worse, he’d give the others courage. That made the decision easy. 

I remember Bassimar Kurlov. He was one of my trainers. He was a man of honor, rather than craven tactics. He knew a good leader when he saw one. My father saw it when he promoted him to lead one of the squadrons.” Fin said.

If Vondar Shostakov leads well, what point is there in replacing him?” Fin asked, turning his gaze on the other males.

Ulamar sneered. “Decorated or not, we will not be lead by a cripple.

And if you become a cripple, will these men stand by you? If they are warriors worth their salt, they should. Or do they consider you worthy solely because you have wings at this moment?” Fin asked.

Ulamar’s hand dropped to his weapon. “I will not hear about worthiness from a deserter and traitor to our people.

Yes, I am a deserter. A traitor? That remains to be seen. But I am not so stupid as to think that man’s worth is contained solely in his wings. Those can be removed.” Fin said.

Ulamar stepped forward. “Maybe I will remove yours and we can find out.

Know that using Craft in these deserts is death. One way or the other.” Fin said, noting Ulamar’s posture. For a moment, Fin thought that the man would back down.

Then he drew his sword and lunged and Fin sighed internally.

The first slash streaked toward his throat. Fin was drawing his own blade and stepping backward in response. Ulamar’s next two slashes were meant to disembowel him, but Fin stepped inside the man’s guard and drove his elbow into Ulamar’s temple. Ulamar fell to the sands in an undignified heap and did not rise immediately.

The rest of Kaderian’s warriors drew their weapons.

The next man who attacks me or my companions will be left for the sandworms. Hate me if you wish. You have a right to it. But I will not be harassed or intimidated by any Eyrien, not even your Warlord Prince. Put away your weapons, tend to your friend, and this ends now.” Fin said.

Challenge me again and I discuss with Drakkar why he has allowed the standards of the Blood Seekers to fall so low. After I tell him how I killed each of you and escorted Kaderian home because you were unworthy.

Fin locked eyes with each man, testing their resolve. Killing them gained him little, but he couldn't have them testing him or the others in a few hours.

*Abbadon...Lucky...stay back.*



Offline Kaderian Yrisia

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #8 on: Jul 08, 18, 11:21:22 PM »
Kaderian rolled her eyes as the males got their nerves ruffled by the mention of Shostakov.  She'd had this debate numerous times - Vondar's disfigurement did not change what he had done and did not change his capabilities in leadership.  After centuries of war, and the Storm, her people needed to get over the idea of hating those without wings.  Especially those who had lost them in battle or as prisoners.

But arguing with Ulamar about it now, in front of others, would do her no good.  Just as it had done no good in the numerous arguments before.

I will not hear about worthiness from a deserter and traitor to our people.

She turned, her eyes narrowing as she recognized that tone.  "Ulamar."  She hissed it, her wings mantling a little.  She even started moving forward, fingers curling.. and then Ulamar lunged.  Of course he did.  Tavar Andros, however, had not lost his edge in all these years.  He put Ulamar down in a heap, warning the others as they drew their weapons.

"THAT WILL BE ENOUGH."  She hissed it, turning her head this way and that to look at the Hunters who had come with her.  "Prince Estaroth said he is to come to Askavi, he is coming.  If any of you so much as scratch him without better cause than injured pride, so help me, I will disable you for the rest of your lives."

Let their imaginations run on that one. 

But while her words registered.. even made some of them flicker in their anger.. she knew it wouldn't be enough.  She had been travelling with them long enough, gotten to know them well enough, to know that they would not listen to a Healer in this moment. 

So she set the Healer inside of her to the side, marching towards Ulamar and planting a foot between his wings as he struggled to get ot his feet.  Then.. then she reached down and snapped the bone in his left wing.  The howl was sharp, piercing - she paid no mind to it.  Her dagger moved down, resting at the back of his neck as he began to shift his weight beneath her.

"You attacked the male we are escorting Ulamar.. be grateful I did not break both, and let it be a warning.  If you do this again.. I will peel them from your shoulders and leave them here in the desert, do you understand me?  Drakkar wants him alive.  I gave my word, and if you make a liar of me.." 

She fisted her free hand in his hair, as if readying herself.  The blade pressed, a little tighter until a drop of blood beaded against her steel, and she growled.  "If you make a liar of me after all of this, I will ruin you.  Am I understood?"

The stillness below her had her ready, willing.  Ulamar had tested her too many times for her to lose any sleep if she hurt him.  She'd like to say it wouldn't bother her to kill him - she knew better.  She was still a Healer - and it would bother her. But she'd do it.

"Yes, Lady Yrisia."

She slowly released him, taking a step back before eyeballing the wing.  "A good thing we are not flying.  I'll bind that up for you, and tend to it when we cross the border.  The rest of you... pay attention and do not piss me off.. or I'll do worse to you.  At this point, having the deserter be my escort is more attractive than dealing with any of you stupid brutes."

Offline Abaddon al-Sabbah

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #9 on: Jul 11, 18, 03:49:10 PM »
Abaddon was beginning to think that strangers took his relative silence for a lack of interest in confrontation.  That was very far from being true.  He was, perhaps, too interested in confrontation, but he balanced out that desire with the cunning and vision of the Black Widow, even of his Castes conspired to make him inclined towards irritability.  Fin knew this, of course, and understood how to read the Red Black Widow Warlord Prince’s agitation.  Abaddon knew trouble when he saw it.  Years of hunting the Spider’s enemies had granted him that at least.  He was always able to tell who would fight, and who would run, perhaps not at first, but near the end he had a feel for it.  Few enough wanted to cross someone with his Darkness, fewer still were those that wished to trouble someone of his Castes, but there was always someone willing to roll the dice.  The Eyrien in question looked like trouble, and it pleased Abaddon that Fin took his advice seriously.

He rolled his shoulders uncomfortable as the talk of lost wings was exchanged.  He had never known what it was like to have wings, though Leila had given him a small sliver of hope.  The price for that hope being fulfilled was terribly high, and Abaddon did not know if he had it in him to demand a literal pound of flesh off of someone else’s back, friend or foe.  He made no comment, but he listened to what was said, as the mention of a Gray was enough to mark as a concern.  It did not fill him with any sense of trepidation; a Gray poisons as easily as a White, and few enough will do well with a Black Widow’s poison in their veins, and few enough were constantly on guard for such an invasion.  By all accounts, these Eyriens were combative, getting close would not be an issue.  Fin had warned him not to underestimate the prowess of Eyrien warriors, and he would not, but neither should they, in all their potential years, underestimate him.  Darkness and years were not always the final arbiters, and it was not in Abaddon to shrink.

Abaddon had trained with Fin for his entire life.  He knew when the man was preparing for something.  He watched his feet, watched the way he set his balance.  He was more than ready for the fool Eyrien’s attack, and even Abaddon had to shake his head very slightly.  Attacking in anger was a good way to get killed in this sort of fight.  A brawl to work out frustration was one thing, but this was to draw blood, potentially to the death.  It was when the rest drew their weapons that Abaddon quietly drew in Power, sucking the air out of the space around him, making it known that he and his Red were ready.  The Jewel pulsed in the abdomen of the spider that was the ring he still wore.  Better to kill them all here, with solid stone under their feet, than to let them take to the air out in the desert.  Abaddon would see Kaderian safely home himself, if it came to that.  He did not snarl, or nod when Fin sent him his command on a Sapphire thread, he simply waited and did not advance.

Kaderian took control then, once again, leaving Abaddon unimpressed by the Eyrien Escorts she was with.  They were undisciplined and uncontrolled, a far cry from the man that Abaddon had grown up with.  He let his Power fade, along with the sense of his presence, and looked to Fin, gave Kaderian a nod, and moved to his horse to check its tack and harness.

Offline Tavar al-Sabbah

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #10 on: Today at 12:34:43 PM »

After that day, it was clear that their party was really two separate groups traveling in the same direction. Fin, Abbadon, and Lucky represented Pruul. The Blood Seekers saw to themselves, interacting with the others only when necessary. Kaderian was the thread between the groups, acting mostly as Drakkar’s voice. The groups came together during rests and at meal times, but mostly stayed separate. Ulamar still glared daggers at Fin, but if the Warlord notice, he made no comment. The Eyriens kept to themselves and did not attempt to harass Fin. They did, however, keep their distance from Abbadon, with the word “abomination” heard among the group, though outside the Red-jeweled male's earshot.

Moving westward, they encountered caravans and traders headed to Onn on business. Fin’s thoughts darkened as he realized that the summer festivals were not far off. If this madness dragged on, he would miss the highsummer festival. If he was truly unfortunate, he wouldn’t return until Autumn or Winsol, long after Elenor and the Sabbah returned from the migration. Fin’s mood grew somewhat surly after that realization, wings flapping in annoyance during their walks.The heat was tolerable during the daylight hours, so they traveled on until just before sunset to make camp. More than once, they had to warn the Eyriens against using Craft in the desert. Fin could not shake Prince Omid’s warning from earlier in the season about the sandworms.

They are waking, Lord Sabbah, and growing more active. I don’t think anyone is prepared for what’s coming.

He wasn’t looking forward to the long hike, but he wasn’t ready to risk flying yet. Not with the rumblings he’d been hearing at night among the sands.

The western mountains drew closer and closer each day. Fin missed his clan, Judiah, and Elenor. Even the stories he overheard during the night as the Eyriens told their stories, things he remembered from his youth, didn’t balm his soul. He wanted to march right up to Drakkar, punch him in the face, and leave. That would be his statement, his only statement, about where he’d been all these centuries. But that action risked the lives of Abbadon and Lucky in the short-term, and the lives of the Sabbah in the long-term.

He would see this through.

The end of that first week saw them arrive at the foot of the mountains. From afar, they appeared sheer, with no handholds or footholds to climb. The Blood Seekers murmured in approval, long-sick of walking and ready to take the skies. Once more, Fin cautioned them against doing that which even he wished he could do.

Two miles south is a footpath that leads into the mountains. It’s slow going, but we’d make good distance by nightfall. I want to be out of Pruul completely before we take flight. There was once a Blood Seeker outpost in the mountains. Does it still exist?” Fin asked, turning to the Eyriens.

Nicolar, second to Ulamar, spoke up. “If you’re thinking of Deephome, it’s still there. Prince Kurlov has moved operations to Stonekeep, but Deephome has a healthy contingent of warriors. They may not have much to share, but we’ll be able to restock before reaching Starfall.” Nicolar said.

Fin adjusted his vambraces. “How long would it take to reach Deephome, once we’re in the mountains?

A two days. Three, at most.” Nicolar said.

Fin nodded and adjusted his vambraces. “After Deephome, we’ll work out flying to Starfall.

The Eyriens grumbled, but they heeded his words. Fin lead the group to the path and up into the mountains. The first night in the mountains was far cooler than the deserts, and morale improved. They established guards for the camp at night, with Fin sometimes staying on the entire night to ensure that everyone was safe. Ever since their arrival in the mountains, Fin had been both anxious and excited to see Askavi again. He maintained his weapons to keep the thoughts at bay, speaking only when he was directly addressed.

The first day in the mountains passed without incident, allowing the group to make great time.  The mountains were beautiful, though the winds whistling along the rock reminded him of the Runs. Fin hadn’t flown anything so challenging as the Khaldharon run in centuries. Perhaps, if there was time, he would visit one of the runs and test himself. He wanted to know if he still had it, had the deadly edge that was once part of his adolescence.

By the time they set camp that evening, Nicolar was optimistic that they could reach the outskirts of Deephome by the following afternoon. They’d be able to rest inside a fortified location and restock their supplies before they arrived at Starfall. Fin even allowed himself to rest this night, dreaming of Elenor and Judiah awaiting him at the edge of Onn when he finally returned home. Amira would hug him as though the world was ending and Shadya, his little Spider, would cross her arms and pretend to be wholly turned off by the entire display, but Fin could see her smiling despite herself. He woke in the morning feeling refreshed and ready to make the final push to Deephome, and prepared himself what lay beyond. They woke in the morning and ate.

The Eyriens refused, pointedly, to carry Abaddon.

Fin looked to the Black Widow Warlord Prince directly.

If it isn’t an issue for you, I’ll carry you until we get to Deephome. We can rest there and then be in Starfall by tomorrow or the following day. What do you think?” Fin asked.

Better to ask and be sure than accidentally set off his friend through carelessness.



Offline Lucky al-Izar

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Re: stabbing westward
« Reply #11 on: Today at 01:14:35 PM »
Lucky al-Izar remained unmoved by the Eyrien males. They moved against Fin, they talked, they existed, but the Warlord Prince knew that Fin could handle himself. He wouldn’t look up to the man if he couldn’t. His hand remained poised to call in a sword, one of his own making, smoothly polished and inscribed with his own mark, but he did not call it in. Not once as they travelled. Instead, he watched the other males with almost curiosity. The way they moved. The way they talked. What they ate. He listened to their war stories, wrapped up in them like he had been to Gunnar’s as a child. Slowly, as the days drug on, he began to pick up a few of their movements. The way their wings folded with ease, the way they walked, the way they kept their gaze on the horizon, expecting a threat any moment.

The Mineborn had never been around so many Eyriens in his life and he absolutely loved it, even if he wouldn’t hesitate to kill any of them if they threatened their small group. The long journey did some to repair the tensions between Lucky and Fin as well, the younger male joining his mentor on watch most nights. Sometimes they just sat there in silence, looking out at the horizon, and other times, Lucky asked Fin about Askavi and what he could expect. However, where there was anxiety and anticipation nested within Fin, there was only breathless excitement within Lucky. He had waited his entire life to see Askavi, to breathe in the air and rest his eyes on the mountains. The few glimpses that Eleanor had given him were not enough.

So it was with joy that he rose the morning they were set to fly, feeling satisfaction that he could enter his ancestors land in the air.

“Better hold on tight, Prince. Wouldn’t want you to fall.” Lucky smirked and a few of Kaderian’s guards laughed, thrilling the Mineborn. He might be travelling with Abaddon and they might share a Queen, but he did not like the man. There was something about him that buried into Lucky’s skin, something that gnawed at him. But Mother Nights tits, he couldn’t figure out what it was.