Forbidden Magic

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Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Tue Aug 08, 2017 12:59 pm

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Forbidden Magic

Ezi'kel loved coming into the cities just to see the faces. All the snobby too-good-for-you ladies and lords were the first to scoff at you like you were a mar on their boots and the next, they were first in line to watch the gypsies at work. Of course they were too good for such things and yet they came, pretending to be bored, pretending that they weren't fascinated by the displays but Ezi'kel knew better. It was a sort of power, to mesmerize others. To know you could capture them with a flare. He, a piss-born ingrate, could stop them in their tracks and make them look at him, make them 'ooh' and 'ahh' with a flick of his wrists.

The gypsy let a smile twist the corners of his lips, his emerald eyes alight with mischief as he danced on the raised stage. His hands move faster and faster as he twirled the two batons in his hands, the flaming ends creating a never ending cycle of flame. The plethora of golden bracelets on his bronzed arms jingled with his movements and caught the light of the fire making it look like the flames were rolling off of him. His short red hair was as intense as the flames that surrounded him. He was shirtless so his shirt wouldn't catch the flames and the dark tattoos on his chest, back and face were in full view. Flouurishing lines ended with elaborate designs and petals inked with scales and feathers to represent the dragon and phoenix spirits. It was the mark of the gypsy clan he belonged to and he wore it proudly.

The beat of the drums behind him increased their tempo as he reached the climax of his flaming dance. With a flourish of movements, he tossed the batons up and caught them both, extinguishing all but one flame as he reached to his belt and pulled free a flask. He took a swing before lifting the last flaming stick and blew hard, the oil he spit at it igniting it and spreading the fire out across the crowd. But his display wasn't over yet. He was a Fire Starter after all. With his energy, the expanding fire took on a dragon's shape and it gave a silent roar as it swooped and soared over the crowd, earning a few startled screams. The crowd ducked away from the heat as the dragon raced back onto the stage and with one final explosion turned into a phoenix, its wings spread wide in mirror imitation of Ezi'kel's outstretched arms. As sudden as it appeared, the flame went out, leaving smoke in the air as Ezi'kel gave a bow, panting from the exertion, his skin sweat slicked.

After a moment of quiet, the crowd cheered for the display and some tossed lee into the waiting baskets at the bottom of the stage. It was mostly the poor and middle class that tossed coins, the nobility of course feigning their distaste. They wouldn't be caught approving of the display but every once in a while, they too tossed something to the gypsies. Ezi'kel sauntered lazily off the stage and grabbed a waiting rag to wipe off.

"A show off as always," mused one of his clan brothers.

Ezi'kel looked up and spotted his best friend, his brother in name. "Luri. It pays to be a show off," he grinned. "I do remember you having quite the boasting fest during your own performance."

The sword swallower shrugged though he was smiling, his own pale hair cropped short in the back but his bangs were combed to the right and ended just above his chin. "Maybe. But my entertainment does not include a dangerous flame that could swallow up paying audiences and their homes or shops. One of these days you are going to get burned or one of our lovely patrons will call you out for 'scaring the souls' out of them or some such nonsense."

"You worry too much," Ezi'kel said then and poured some water over his arms, chest and back to cool the fire in his blood. He wiped off again before he pulled a shirt on and adjusted himself in the mirror. The clothing felt too warm but he doubted the people of this noble city would stand for such indecent displays of flesh if he wandered its streets shirtless. "I am going to take in some of the sights. Not every day we get to be in the cities."

"Just be careful Ezi'kel. You know how the people behind walls get when we are around."

Ezi'kel waved his friend off before he left the tent to start wandering the streets, wondering what had changed since last they were here. As he walked, his bracelets continued to jingle and he enjoyed the light tap of his earrings swaying against his cheeks. He was a dead give away for a foreigner with his exotic appearance and the noise he made but he wasn't here to hide. The more noise he made, the more space he felt he took up and townsfolk couldn't say he was trying to sneak about and steal things; not with the attention grabbing racket he made with every step.
“What are you?" she asked.
"A monster," said Kell hoarsely. "You'd better let me go."
The girl gave a small, mocking laugh. "Monsters don't faint in the presence of ladies."
"Ladies don't dress like men and pick pockets," retorted Kell. Her smile only sharpened.
"What are you really?"
"Tied to your bed," said Kell matter-of-factly.
"And?" His brow furrowed.
"And in trouble.”
― Victoria Schwab, A Darker Shade of Magic

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby tallyrabbit on Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:23 am

Jk :)

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Sun Sep 10, 2017 4:06 am

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Hazel eyes gazed upon the crowd with an air of wonder, curiosity drawing her towards the foreign band of travelers like metal to a magnet. The caravan had only just arrived within the past two days, and Samara, having never seen such folk before, only now stumbled across the lively looking group.

Turning to catch a passerby, the young woman dared to question them "Begging your pardon, but what manner of people are they?"

The man regarded her as though she were daft, brows furrowed as he gruffly answered her anyway. "You got rocks in yer head lady? Them's gypsy folk. " Samara looked affronted at the insult, all but glaring at the retreating figure even as a burning embarrassment filled her veins and colored her face. She didn't much care for looking a fool, even if she logically had no way of knowing otherwise. She had half a mind to curse out loud, but force of habit prevented the expletive from being released. Instead, she turned to marvel once more at the gathering crowd, feeling excited in spite of her less than pleasant exchange.

Sure, she had heard of such things, for they were mentioned often enough. But she grew up in high society, and as her parents emphasized, no respectable aristocrat- especially a woman, would be caught dead giving such riff-raff her patronage. It was for common folk- or so she was told, and such displays were beneath her.

Despite her upbringing, Samara couldn't keep from feeling a growing excitement, intrigued by the thought of finally being able to witness such a show. It would seem almost silly, but even something as common as this was an adventure to her- stepping into forbidden territory. The sensation was the same thrill she always got when about to learn something new, and Samara relished the feeling. Mind made up, she headed towards the crowd in question, heart racing in anticipation.

The sight stopped her in her tracks. Whatever she was expecting, this was not it. People of all ages had gathered around in a circle, and quite the mix of patrons could be seen. No one social class seemed to dominate, nor did the rules she grew up with seem to apply. The show had already been going on for some time, judging by the crowd and the air of excitement. Not to mention, several of the foreigners were putting things to the side- already finished with them.

In seconds, the man currently at the center of attention caught her eye, causing Samara's breath to hitch in her throat. It was a young man with crimson hair that almost seemed to burn like the fire he was wielding. Flinching slightly at the dangerous flickering surrounding the man's body, the noble nevertheless was mesmerized, unable to tear her eyes away from the scene before her. The man played with fire as though it were no more dangerous than tossing a ball, making her tense as she watched. He could easily burn himself, yet he seemed to be smiling without a care. Madness, surely!

The finale caught her by surprise, the young woman covering her mouth to stifle an alarmed 'Oh' from escaping. She watched in mortification, expecting the worst, when the dragon shaped flames vanished into smoke.

The cheering broke her reverie, Samara standing in awe of the unreal performance, and her eyes followed the now sweat-soaked male as he conversed with a fellow of his clan, barely registering the coins being tossed to the performers as the crowd began to disperse. For a moment, she considered tossing a coin, but she could almost hear the shrill sound of disapproval coming from her family were they to hear such thoughts. Instead, she simply watched the troupe of performers, one or two occassionally giving her a strange look.

Feeling awkward, Samara began to head back towards the inner part of the city, still mentally torn between tossing a coin to the man for his impressive display, or approaching him and scolding him for such reckless and unnatural behavior. The further she got, the more she resigned herself to never seeing gypsies again. After all, there were plenty of reasons to avoid them if the stories were true. Not to mention, it wouldn't look good to become too interested in their doings. This would be a one time experience to savor in her heart (intense though it was), and never to be repeated again.

A pleasant jingling caught her attention, simultaneously eliciting a sense of deja vu. Samara glanced about for the source, only to instantly recognize the fire performer from not ten minutes before. Even without the jingle of his many bangles, his vibrant hair stood out, and before she could think on her actions, she hurried to approach the exotic stranger.

"Y-you there! Fire man." she said, not knowing how to address such a person.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Tue Sep 12, 2017 8:47 pm

Ezi'kel hummed under his breath, one hand reaching out to trace the walls of the buildings he passed. Everything here was so sturdy. Not a wind could blow it down and though these buildings provided shelter from a lot of the elements and they were beautiful to look at but he could only see them as prisons. How did people here not suffocate with these houses all around them? This place was stagnant too. He knew he'd get antsy staying in one place too long though he too wondered what it would be like to have one home to always come back to, to never worry about running out of certain nutrients on the road. Still, he did enjoy his life. He wouldn't give it up for couple of walls when he had the world at his finger tips.

The young gypsy pulled away from the buildings then and watched the people passing by. Some stared at him, which he didn't mind. He was debating what food he was going to try. He could smell freshly baked bread, the sizzling pork wafting through the air. It made his stomach growl. Best part about towns beside the coin and replenished stock, was trying new foods. Each town always had a staple food or product and he was eager to savor it. And doing his show always made him hungry. He burned off a lot of calories. Truthfully, he magic ate up a lot of his resources and burned fats, alcohol, anything he put into his system tended to be turned into fuel right quick so he was always famished, and a tad dehydrated but he could drink anyone under the table. Had to take the bad with the stride after all.

Speaking of alcohol, Ezi'kel reached into his sash belt and lifted a flask to his lips to down some mead he warmed instantly with his touch. He nearly choked when he heard someone behind calling for him. Fire man? Really? Not even something creative? He would have accepted the rudeness if it at least would have been funny or something. He rolled his eyes and turned around, taking the time to lean again a fence around the house he was standing beside and stuck the flask into his belt. He let his gaze roam over the woman that was coming towards him then.

Noble. Definitely wealthy thanks to the look of her clothing and style. She was pretty but she was all swallowed up by cloth and constrictive corset. How could the slight thing even rush towards him? But more importantly, what did someone like her want from someone like him?

"Mmm milady," he said and gave her a mock bow, his eyes never leaving her. "Look to see what I can do for you, aneh?"

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:31 am

Despite her inability to think of an appropriate way to address the gypsy, Samara's call was nevertheless answered, the male turning to face her without any hint of concern. His simple act of leaning against the fence and silently appraising her was done in such a manner that she immediately likened him to a cat. Graceful, unconcerned about appearances, and with a slightly condescending air.
Ordinarily, Samara was well prepared to handle most social interactions and readily able to behave in the correct manner. However, despite being the one to approach the stranger first, she found she had not thought far enough ahead to decide what she had actually intended to say or do once she had reached him. Feeling utterly foolish, she considered acting as if she hadn't called out, when his mocking bow and bemused tone pushed her embarrassment too far.

Stiffening at his demeanor, her cheeks puffed slightly as she let out a huff. "You think to insult me?!" she snapped, turning red as she grew more flustered. Not one accustomed to having others talk to her in a casual or teasing manner, she was loathe to submit to the idea that she had no idea how to properly react to such a stranger. "I don't need anything from the likes of you!" she retorted quickly, resisting the urge to stomp her foot. She hadn't done that since her childhood, and she was not going to let something so simple get her riled up!

Taking a breath to regain composure, Samara stood up straighter and managed to look the redhead in the eyes. "I saw you earlier when you were...performing. I-I daresay you deserve a coin for your impressive display!" she spouted out, not entirely sure she liked this statement much better than her scrambling to find words. "But you better be careful with stunts like those!"

Damn it all! Samara was vexed, but here she was still trying to...compliment and scold the gypsy? Clearly she was losing her mind. What good would come of striking up a conversation with the traveling folk? What if the magic users had already somehow bewitched her?! Perhaps that could explain it...

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:16 am

Ezi'kel didn't know what to make of the woman. He cocked an eyebrow at her as he watched her fluster herself and then revert back to her hottie attitude. She switched from praising to scolding him in the time it would take him to pass a flame to his second hand. It was amusing that his presence had such an affect on the woman, but it was also annoying. How could he talk to the woman if she was stuck between being disgusted and intrigued? He knew that this was going to end with him causing far more trouble than it was worth, but he was bored and she at least posed him a distraction.

"My, I don't know whether to thank you or scoff," he answered. "I know how to control my flame, my lady. Perhaps the onlookers be the ones to approach with care," he mused. "The fire doesn't hurt me." Ezi'kel snapped his fingers, creating just enough friction to let the fire appear on his finger tips. He let it dance between his fingers and grinned before he moved his hand to let it walk up his arm and around his shoulder to the other hand before he let it go out. "But, you mentioned payment for my services. What did you have in mind, aneh?" he asked then. "Will you pay me in coin? Cloth? Food? Your lord won't be too displeased with the payment, I trust?" He may love the idea of payment, but he did not want some angry lord miffed that his wife or whatever had given him his coin, coming after him. He wouldn't give it back and then that would just cause hassle for his family.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Mon Dec 25, 2017 3:34 am

Samara's cheeks puffed out indignantly at his words, feeling the embarrassment color her face once more. He was not being overly polite and cordial, but he wasn't exactly being a 'cur'. No, he seemed more nonchalant or even a bit amused. Not exactly a response she was accustomed to those of lower social standing having when around her. It was confusing, and she did not like being unsure! Biting her lip, she frowned slightly at him, feeling a retort begin to form in the forefront of her mind, when he conjured a flame with a snap of his fingers.

The sudden fire elicited a startled gasp, the young woman flinching slightly and drawing back from the heat before realizing he wasn't tossing it around like before. To her astonishment, he handled the destructive force with all the care and concern of a child with their favorite toy. Her eyes followed the flame's movement from his hand up his arm and back around to the other, mouth slightly agape. She only realized how unsightly the action was and shut her mouth when the fire vanished in his opposing hand as swiftly as he had summoned it.

His mentioning of payment brought her back to her senses, and for a moment, Samara looked as though she might argue. But thankfully, she recalled that she did in fact mention rewarding him for his talents before she could snap at him for suggesting she pay. Turning slightly so she was facing him on one side, she reached into her belt to grab for a small coin purse with her opposing hand (after all, he was one of those traveling folk). She withdrew five gold coins, shoving them out at him even as his words ruffled her again.
"My Lord? I answer to no lord, save my father! I am not a maid or a child!"

Samara held her arm outstretched with the offering of coins, watching the gypsy with an unusual mixture of trepidation, curiosity, and annoyance. "For your performance!" she said quickly, even as her concerns (brought on, especially, by the tales of such folk as he) grew. "A-and you better not have put some sort of spell on me!" she added before even bothering to think about her words.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Tue Dec 26, 2017 2:02 am

It was Ezi'kel turn to stare at the woman aghast when he saw how much the woman was giving him. This had to be a joke, right? No one had ever given him that much money before. Usually it was coppers and maybe, maybe, one silver piece, but gold pieces? Was she so rich as to not see how much 5 gold pieces was? Was she some sort of mage? Or maybe this was some sort of trick? She'd pull away the money and go 'ha of course I wasn't going to give this to you! Stupid gypsy'? There was only one way to find out.

He reached out quickly and took the 5 gold pieces. He watched her warily a moment before he looked down. They looked real. He lifted each coin to his mouth and he bit on it to see if it was perhaps fools gold or taste any magic on them. There was no lie. They were all real gold and there was nothing concealing their identity. He turned new eyes on the woman and searched her up and down as he pocketed the 5 coins.

"My thanks. You are very generous," he said then. "What is your name? I am Ezi'kel. Was there somewhat you wanted from me?" There had to at least be some sort of catch, right? No one was this generous to his people. He just couldn't wrap his mind around it.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Sun Dec 31, 2017 4:47 am

Samara flinched slightly at how quickly the man moved, swiping the coins from her in as hurried a manner as she imagined a thief would. 'Of course, I guess they really are that manner of folk' she thought, recalling all the whispers and warnings of gypsy clans. But even so, he made no further gesture she could perceive as threatening, nor did he try to get around to her opposing side with her now tucked away coin purse.

He did, however, bite the coins as part of his inspection- as any merchant might when dealing with a suspicious customer or dealer. The noble woman huffed, looking more than slightly insulted at the affront. What a rude man! Here he was, regarding her with the same suspicion garnered by his kind. "Don't look down on me! I am not a fool with fool's money!" she snapped, frowning at him.

Her frown didn't last long, the man surprising her with his sudden change in demeanor. First he was thanking her (though that much was obviously expected), then he was questioning her. Samara let the sound of his name replay in her mind for a moment, subconsciously committing it to memory and marveling over the sound. It was as exotic as the stranger it belonged to, and she found the name a pleasant one. She rather liked it if she were to be honest. A name unlike any she had heard before, but it was not unpleasant to hear.

She quickly pushed aside such silly thoughts, and debated for a moment if she dare give this gypsy her name. After a moment's pause, she found herself answering truthfully. "My name is Samara." she replied, her brows quirking slightly at his question. Want from him? What would she want from a gypsy? The noble frowned, shaking her head firmly. "Surely not. I don't need anything." she paused, glancing at him warily for a moment as tales of the gypsy folk ran through her mind once more. "U-Unless you did something to trick or bewitch me, then no!" Hazel-brown eyes watched his every move, unsure of herself and how to deal with such a stranger.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Sun Dec 31, 2017 5:25 am

"Sorry, had to be sure," he answered her insult at his inspection. Too many of her people had tried to swindle his people. He almost scoffed. And they called his kind thieves. From where he stood, the noble stole more from the poor than his clan ever did. They worked honestly. For the most part. There were very rare occasions they'd employ pick pocketing and that was only in the harshest times. They were a hard working people and they valued the ability to gather enough of what the needed to survive on the roads. It wasn't always sunshine and roses after all. And not always comfortable, but it was satisfying.

"Samara, aneh?" he mused. Samara was a pretty nice name. Flowed on the tongue like water. It would be easy to remember her name. At her mention of curses, he rolled his eyes heavenward as if to say, 'See? This is the ignorance I have to deal with'. "By Anra's jowls, you people and your assumptions. I didn't put a curse on you. I have no reason to, and most can't," he explained. "But anyway, thanks for he money. It was a nice change," he said then. He gave her a real bow then, earning a bit more respect from the traveler. "If you've no need, I'd best be on my way. You're people would not look kindly of someone of you're rank talkin' so long with the likes of me. If you want to see the my full show, I'll be performing again tonight and the 'morrow's eve. My light shines best in the night. This was more practice like. My cousin's are great performers as well. And if you are brave enough, you are welcome to my clan's feasting tonight. We'll have fortune tellers and other things for trade. Interested, aneh?"

He pulled out a special coin then with a dragon on it rather than a face. "Show this to the guard, like, and they'll let you through to the caravan. Don't let others see or they'll snatch it right up and you'll get the uniforms on you." By uniforms of course, he meant the soldiers that would round up evil doers and threw them into the jail for trial. Most often, gypsies didn't get a fair trial int he towns. "You're rank will save ya from the bars, me thinks, but you'll still get trouble. I'd not wish it upon you, considering your generosity."

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Mon Jan 08, 2018 6:51 am

Samara pursed her lips, but held her tongue as Ezi'kel justified his action of biting her coins. Even if his reason made perfect sense, she felt silly- and thus, it irked her. Samara hated to feel foolish in any sense, and someone thinking her to be the type to carry fools gold was still insult enough to rub her the wrong way.

Ezi'kel's manner of speaking was unusual to say the least, and she wondered about the sound he seemed prone to making at the end of his sentences. Tempted to ask, she instead stiffened slightly in a subconsciously defensive posture as he rebuked her concerns. A brief flush of her cheeks showed her abashment, the young woman pursing her lips once more to silence any impulsive remarks. 'Well how am I to know?! Your kind are known to have such abilities...' she thought, but kept the retort to herself as he thanked her again. The sincere bow was enough to further pacify her, and without even thinking about it, Samara inclined her head slightly in acknowledgement.

Fighting to keep her face neutral, Samara felt an rebellious thrum of excitement in her gut at the realization that there was still the possibility to see another performance- a full one, by the gypsy and his caravan. She had naturally assumed she would never again look upon a troupe of gypsies performing, but the idea of seeing it again was more tempting than she'd ever let on...especially considering how Ezi'kel made it sound. What she had witnessed earlier was practice?! What on earth else could he and his fellow gypsies do? Though she could imagine the view of his fire during the night would be more striking than a daytime performance. But he was correct, her social class had no business speaking with or engaging with the likes of nomads...

His inquiry into her interest was met with silence, though unbeknownst to her, the conflict clearly showed in her eyes. Deny it all she want, she secretly did want to see more. Not like her family would allow it. Samara mutely held out a hand to accept the offered coin before toying with it in her fingers. She looked down at the token as he continued to speak, thumb tracing the pattern as she studied it. She looked up at last, nodding to convey she understood. "I see...well then. I bid thee a good day." With this, she turned and started off down the street, but paused when she had only taken all of five steps. "Thank you...mr Ezi'kel."
With this, she hurried off.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Clutching the coin close, Samara passed everything and everyone in a blur, finally putting the token into her coin purse when she was just outside her family estate. She had no sooner entered her home when a stern voice accosted her.

"Samara! Where have you been? You were supposed to meet with the Duke Baldarich this evening!" her father began angrily, brows furrowed at his child. "Thanks to your absence, I had to send his grace on his way and say you were otherwise occupied! What if you had run into him as you were frolicking outside?! Explain yourself!"

Feeling her body stiffen, Samara glanced up just as her mother made her way into the foyer to stand beside her father- the marquis. Two firm gazes were sent her way, and the young woman clenched her jaw to prevent her mouth from running away with her. She rarely had issues with her family or her status, but there was one major source of contention between them.

She was more than old enough to marry, and as far as her parents were concerned, she had put it off long enough. The latest (and most desireable) suitor to show interest in her was high in rank, wealthy, and by most standards a truly ideal match.
But Samara hated him.

Sure, he wasn't ugly. He had money. He had status. He could provide for her, and he wasn't more than twice her age.
But he was as dull as could be. And besides, Samara loathed the idea of having a husband picked for her. She wasn't some pawn!

"Forgive me father, I merely forgot. I was out for a walk and lost track of the hour..." she said, poised and proper in spite of her steadily growing urge to shout. Her parents didn't look convinced, and she saw a vein throbbing in her father's temple.

"How convenient of you to forget a dinner you have been preparing for for a week!" snapped the noble, earning a frown from his usually behaved daughter. Samara stomped her foot, shaking her head furiously as the tension in the room escalated.

"I can forget too! And besides- I already said I want to pick my-"
"You've said that for the past year and a half! And you are no where nearer to choosing a suitor than you are to growing a pair of wings! Holding out for a prince to come calling on you?"
"M-maybe I am!" Samara blurted out without thinking, frustrated tears burning at the corners of her eyes.
"Ha! So she does have a clue what she wants! Samara, you are a fool to pass up such a promising match, and to not even meet with him further is an embarrassment I will not tolerate! You aren't picking, so I'm picking for you. Now you'll go to bed without argument, and tomorrow you will greet your suitor properly and apologize for the insult of today."

"Fine! I'll meet the Duke, but I won't marry him!" Samara shouted back, running to her quarters and slamming the door before her father's angry retort could reach her ears.

----------------------------------------

Stubbornly refusing her dinner and remaining locked in her room, Samara pouted, hoping that her parents would give in and spoil her as when she was a child, though she knew it was in vain. Though her parents had high expectations, she had never before failed to meet or surpass them, thus being a fine young lady they could be proud to call their own. A daughter they could reward and show off.
But it meant little if they couldn't find her a proper suitor. If another noble- a more important noble- didn't want her, then what else was she aiming for? Advancement was the name of the game...but still.

Despite the late hour, sleep evaded the woman, and restlessness began to settle in. Usually she and her family would 'talk' after an argument, and she'd promise to be good in order to appease her parents and be able to do as she pleased (within reason, of course!). But no one had made any attempt to apologize, and the stalemate was wearing at her nerves.

Emptying her coin purse and counting the contents in some futile attempt to ease her boredom, Samara stopped upon seeing the unusual token from the gypsy. From Ezi'kel.
Picking up the coin, she idly toyed with it in between her fingers, thoughts of that afternoon running repeatedly through her head.

After an agonizingly long twenty minutes, Samara could stand her self-imposed strike no more, and stuffed her coins and the token back into her pouch before tucking it away into her clothes as she dressed to go out.

-----------------------

Within the hour, Samara had finally snuck out of her estate (nearly getting caught by a serving maid while doing so) and made it towards the edge of town where there was still light and laughter. The gypsy caravan obviously had no curfew, and as Ezi'kel had said, it seemed there was indeed a wide array of festivities going on at night.
The noble hesitated in the shadow of the wall surrounding the town, second guessing her decision to come here when a pair of voices reached her ears. Soldiers!

"Explain to me again why we can't gather up those filthy beggars?" complained a younger man's voice.
"Because they haven't crossed our border. They're allowed to be outside. I don't like having those tricksters so close either, but until they screw up, we take care of the people." a more seasoned scout answered with a sigh.
"Yeah, yeah. But still, they're right there" whined the first soldier.

Samara didn't hear the rest, hastily scampering away lest she be noticed- or worse- recognized by the soldiers. She glanced back and kept to the shadows as much as possible, checking to see that she was safe-
When she ran into a solid mass of muscle.

"Where you off to at this hour missy?" asked the gruff, annoyed voice of a guard. The man glared suspiciously at Samara, arms folded over his chest as he regarded her with scrutiny.
"I-I...I'm just" she began to fumble, but thankfully recovered enough to remember the token.

"Here!" she said, thrusting out the odd coin towards the guard whilst looking down at her feet, clutching her coat closer around her to ward off the evening chill in addition to an attempt to hide herself in the cloth.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Mon Jan 08, 2018 1:54 pm

And it was lucky for her the guard wasn't employed by the town. The guard was employed by the caravan and he immediately recognized the coin. He accepted it from her and turned it in the little light they had from the post. The design on it was unmistakable. He looked back over the woman a bit curious. "Well looks like things are in order," he said then and gave her back the token. He couldn't use it after all and a token given to a specific person was magiked by the gypsies. It wouldn't work for anyone aside this woman.

The guard led her the rest of the way to the caravans and stopped just outside the fire light and circle of tents. "You'll be on your own from here." The guard leaned forward to whisper in her ear. "Don't go into the tents. Even if one calls you in. Call me old fashioned but whatever they do in their tents... you won't have guards to protect you. We have no domain in this circle. A young girl like you shouldn't even be here alone but just... be careful," he said before he turned away and hurried back towards his post. He may accept the coin the gypsies offered for his service but that didn't mean he liked them much better than the rest of the folk.

From inside the camp, two broad gypsies with thin clothing and jingling bells came to greet here. The two looked the same- Twins! They stood with one arm wrapped around the other, short swords resting on their hips and gleaming in the little light.

"Hey there pretty lady," the one on the right mused.

"It is late for one to be a-wandering, aneh," the second continued.

"But she is here, I saw, ol' Barzin lead her here himself."

"That means she has a token." The two brothers looked at each other and grinned before they gave her a bow.

"Welcome to the Kanari Caravan!" they welcomed in unison, their fair hair bouncing about their faces.

"We'll be your tour guides for the evening. At least at first. I am Mikah," the first greeted.

"And I am Kirah." The two brothers let go of each other to each come up beside Samara and looped their arms together.

"What is your name?" Mikah asked as they started to walk her into the circle of fire light and tents. The smell of roasting pig and fruit permeated the air, covering even the stick of horse and waste. Each tent had its own incense burning as well, further masking any nasty stench. Each tent was colorful and painted with different designs. It was almost overwhelming to look at them all and the string of lights that led from each tent high above their heads. Laughter and singing could be heard above the beats of the drum the closer they made it to the fire pit. Two pigs were roasting on a spit above the fire and many gypsies were circled around it, swaying as they sang. Each one of them wore tassels, bells, beads, anything that made a jingle. Sitting at the head of the circle on a raised seat, a gypsy eyed her with curious blue eyes. A scar led from temple to chin on the left side of his face and several other nicks. He wore the most gold in the form of rings, bracelets and necklaces. He even wore a few sapphire beads woven into his white hair that sparkled in the fire light.

"That is the Kurr'ani," Kirah whispered in her ear.

"That means he's the leader of the caravan," Mikah explained.

"Do best not to cross him I would think," Kirah grinned.

"Which cousin gave you your token We'll help you find them. The caravan is big, aneh?"

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Mon Feb 12, 2018 6:28 am

Afraid she had somehow made a mistake, Samara considered turning around and fleeing back towards home when the guard declared everything to be acceptable. More than just a tad surprised it was so easy, the young noblewoman nevertheless kept close to the strong (and daresay- intimidating looking) guard as he led her to the large gathering of tents belonging to the caravan. Grateful for the escort, she considered saying as much when the guard suddenly stopped. About to inquire as to why he had ceased to lead her to the heart of the gypsy camp, he beat her to it by leaning in to explain.

The conspiratorial whisper so close to her person nearly made her cry out in surprise and mortification, but thankfully all that escaped her was a slight twitch and a soft squeak. Hands wringing in front of her, Samara felt her uncertainties about this venture return, the warning mixing with so many others before it and with all the hushed whispers about the nomadic folk. This complete stranger was cautioning her to keep outdoors, biding her be careful even though he stood guard for them! Her brow furrowed slightly. Were they truly so dangerous for her to be around? And if he thought them so unpleasant, why was he standing guard for their caravan? How much money was worth guarding those you didn't trust...?

"I shall...but-" Samara watched with growing uncertainty as the guard returned to his spot before she could question him or even answer his worrisome advice. What they did in their tents? She shuddered as wild thoughts invaded her imagination of what the guard was telling her to beware of. Sorcery? Illegal trade? Violent rituals? Or was it something more scandalous...

Such thoughts were swept aside upon being approached by a sturdy looking pair of gypsy twins. The noblewoman stood straighter, inwardly trying to will her nerves under control. She was simultaneously excited at the thrill of being out where she would never dare go, and terribly apprehensive at all the unknowns and the worry she was making a mistake. It was an odd mixture, and for a second, she was quite speechless. "I..." she tried, noting with unease how they also commented on her being out at such an hour.

Aside from their muscled and broad build, the twins were otherwise non-threatening. Their smiles seemed genuine, and she recognized the unique vocalization at the end of their sentences as well. She wondered what it meant.
Before she could ask, the brothers gathered her between them, looping her arms with theirs (and earning a slight yelp of surprise as they did so). Going tense at first, she nevertheless found herself unable (or unwilling) to resist, and allowed them to lead her along. Despite her uncertainty, Samara began to relax as they escorted her, their mannerisms rather amicable. Instead, she began to take more notice of her surroundings, the energy almost palpable. There was singing and laughter, plenty of light and vivid colors; and the smells!
As the scent of fruit and roast pig wafted through the air, Samara was very rudely reminded of her missed dinner, her stomach loudly protesting the neglect. Her cheeks flushed in embarrassment, not one used to being hungry (after all, she had plenty, and could count the number of times she'd refused to take her food on her fingers).

As her name was requested again, she once more debated answering. It was hard enough with one gypsy, but now two were inquiring as to who she was. Would she regret telling them? But who would they tell? And what could they do to her? After some hesitation, she relinquished her name "Samara."

The marquis' daughter noticed the elder's blue eyes on her just seconds before Kirah's voice tickled her ear, eliciting a squeak at his proximity. Despite her moment of mortification, she mentally committed the new word to memory, appraising the elder as he was undoubtedly appraising her from his seat. He clearly stood out as special, and she was not surprised to hear he was their leader. Kurr'ani. It was a unique title, but it had an appealing ring to it.

She almost didn't hear the second twin as she tried to take in her surroundings in more detail, her unease starting to make way for her curiosity. Thankfully, the 'aneh' prompted her to look back at Mikah and Kirah, catching their words just in time. Cousin? Were they all family? The caravan seemed far too big to be one family.
Dismissing the thought as currently unimportant, she thought back on the token and the exotic stranger who had given it to her. He didn't seem to be around- for she didn't see his crimson hair among the crowd gathered around the fire. "Ezi'kel. He wielded fire..." Samara answered, now starting to crane her neck in attempts to see if he was around. Despite the twins casual and welcoming behavior, she still felt a slight unease that had yet to fully abate, and she wished for even a slightly familiar face.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby FaddedFox on Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:02 am

"Ezi'kel?" Mikah asked a bit surprised.

"Really? Ezi is not one to part with tokens often. I wonder why he gave you one," Kirah mused.

"You must be something special, aneh? But Ezi'kel is busy at the moment. He and cousin Verai are going to be performing for us tonight. You are lucky. Tonight is a very important celebration. See, it is the Akan'ari Eve." the first twin grinned.

"We always tell stories but tonight we are celebrating the story of our emblem. It is not a play of the whole history."

"It is about to brothers who came together in the end."

"Oversimplification, don't you think?" Kirah asked with a quirked eyebrow.

Mikah just shrugged. "It's complicated but just watch. Come sit with us." The brothers sat the girl down as food was passed out. The two gypsies made sure that she had a plate with slices of roast pig, smoked fruit and sweat bread. After she was taken care of, they grabbed portions for themselves and began to eat beside the stranger as if it was the most natural thing in the world. They used their hands to eat, something their guest most likely wouldn't be used too.

The atmosphere changed then. The pounding hand drums dropped in volume and the dancers sat down among their kin as a hush fell over the crowd though excitement buzzed just on the surface of the skin. People were looking around, searching for something. "It's starting," Kirah whispered too Simara. "Don't choke on your food," he warned. It was never a fun thing to gasp at something you were watching, only to swallow a bone or something because you weren't paying attention.

A bird cry came out of nowhere as a ball of flame erupted over the crowd, flaming wings spread over the crowd as a phoenix circled the group. Everyone was so focus on the fire-bird, they didn't notice as Ezi'kel and another, silver haired gypsy who had to be Verai, took their places at the center of the circle. The bird dropped to perch on Ezi'kel's shoulder as the two young gypsies stared at each other. Verai extended his hand slowly to the left as water began to swirl around his arm and then outward until the stream transformed into a swirling and shifting dragon wrapped protectively around him. The atmosphere between the two was charged and unlike the earlier performance Samara had witnessed, there was no joking light on Ezi'kel's face. This wasn't the light hearted entertainment the gypsies were known for. Both had weapons at their side as well. Ezi'kel sported a long sword and an arm guard while his partner sported two short swords. The two looked ready for war.

Just when you thought you couldn't bear the tension, Verai leaped forward, swords flashing as the phoenix and dragon evaporated. He was as fluid and nimble as the water. Ezi'kel drew his own sword just in time to block the oncoming attack. At first, Ezi'kel was shuffling back as Verai unleashed attack after attack. The gypsy wouldn't let Ezi'kel recover enough to strike back and he really was nimble. Behind Ezi'kel, a group sitting down had to shuffle back in the expectation that the performers were going to trample them. Instead however,Ezi'kel caught one blade against his wrist guard and knocked the attack of the second blade to the side. Ezi'kel made a move to strike Verai with his arm guard but Verai leaped back, using his momentum to do several flips to get some distance from Ezi'kel. The two circled each other a moment before Ezi'kel struck out. This time Verai was on the defensive. Where Verai had used speed to his advantage, Ezi'kel had a more powerful swing.

The two danced, there really was no other word for the way they expertly twirled backed and leaped forward to meet each other blow for blow. There was no question that the two wee skilled swordsmen. So fierce was the battle between them that they actually nicked each other several time and sliced through clothes. None of it broke their focus on the other. At last Ezi'kel managed to knock Verai down with a well placed smack from his arm guard. Verai's speed worked against him and he hit the ground hard, one of his swords sliding away. Ezi'kel moved forward to place his sword tip against Verai's throat. The other gypsy glared up at Ezi'kel. The battle seamed won, but that is when things got interesting. Verai pressed his hand against a flask he had and water suddenly leaped too his defense and tried to swallow Ezi'kel. Ezi'kel dropped his sword and did a few summer salts of his own around then in the circle of people as the water struck down against the ground where Ezi'kel had been mere seconds before. It seemed Ezi'kel would never be able to stop his flight but then Ezi'kel raised his hands and created a fire shield just as the water came down at him once more. The water evaporated in moments and Verai was on his feet again.

The warriors began a new fight; this one with fire and water striking at the other. The crowd was caught between getting hit with mist or ducking from a spark. The water and fire lit up the night as the two fighters faced each other. At last, one particularly powerful blast from the both of them sent them both flying back. For a moment, they were still. Then Ezi'kel got to his feet and swayed before he regained himself enough and walked over to Verai who was just beginning to sit up. Verai looked at Ezi'kel, tense, waiting. Instead of a strike, Ezi'kel extended his hand towards the other. Verai watched the hand a moment before he grasped it and Ezi'kel helped him up. The two looked at each other before they pressed their heads together and the dragon and phoenix rose again to circle the camp before twining above them. With a last cry, the magic expanded outward and the images vanished. Then the two turned and gave a bow. The camp erupted with cheers.
"Thought that was a real fight from time to time, aneh?" Kirah mused.

"Yeah. They are always like that. I suppose some of it was real. Alright, pretty lady, let's go meet Ezi. He'll go to his tent first." Kirah and Mikah helped their guest up then and hurried to one of the tents and knocked on a board that was outside.

"Ack! Give me a moment, aneh," came the reply from within. "Can't get two moments to... oh!" Ezi'kel grinned as he came out of the tent with his shirt draped around his neck. He was still heaving from the fight. "Good eve, Samara. So you made it for the entertainment, aneh? How did you like?" he asked.

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Re: Forbidden Magic

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby stealthpanther on Sat Sep 01, 2018 5:05 am

For a split second, the noble feared she was somehow in the wrong gypsy caravan, and that the male who had invited her was unknown to the strangers she was currently with. The thought was dismissed almost as quickly as it came- leaving her feeling more than just a tad silly for even thinking it in the first place. There weren't that many gypsy folk and traveling caravans around (or at least, she didn't think there were), and he had said specifically he'd be out performing tonight.

The comments offered by the twins left Samara feeling unusually pleased and just a tad smug. They made it sound like this Ezi'kel was particular about his company and those he paid attention to, and she would be lying if she said that didn't stroke her ego. No matter how well-mannered and decent she was, the young woman was a proud little thing, and to hear she was 'special' certainly made her feel good. She had always liked being 'special', and praise made her as happy as it would anyone else. A slight smile began to unconsciously cross her lips at the thought, interrupted only by the brother's leading her to sit and eat. Her stomach grumbled once more at the smell of a warm, fresh meal, causing her to flush slightly in chagrin. How embarrassing! But at last, she would be able to satisfy her hunger, and had to stop herself from licking her lips at the meal presented to her.

Eager to eat, Samara thanked the brothers for the plate, and looked approvingly at the meal presented. For a bunch of gypsies, they made some very appetizing looking food. It smelled delicious, and she couldn't wait to stick her fork in and-

Wait, where were the utensils?

Turning to face the twins, the young woman parted her lips to ask when the words froze in her throat upon seeing them eat their plates of food. Apparently, utensils must be optional, or a foreign concept all together! But no, one had to cook with utensils, so that wasn't it. Glancing around, Samara noticed that it wasn't just the brothers, but all of the gypsies ate with their hands. But none of this was finger food (well, aside from the bread), and she looked back towards her own plate in dismay. Several of the gypsy folk nearby noticed her hesitation and a few even shook their heads or stifled snickers. Would she really starve herself if she hadn't the fine utensils she was used to? Surely she wouldn't refuse food just because of a simple inconvenience?

Samara looked doubtiously at her plate, debating on if she dare try to...eat with her hands. Perhaps she'd just say she wasn't hungry. Her stomach suddenly betrayed her, and her cheeks flared up once more. Damn it all! Finally, she carefully picked up some of the sweet bread and did her best to use it to scoop and sandwich the rest of her food into her mouth, feeling utterly foolish and unrefined.

Before she could dwell on it or attract more attention, the crowd grew quiet as one of the brothers (Kirah, she was pretty sure) let her know the event was about to begin. This seemed far more tense than the performance she had passed by that morning (though she hadn't exactly seen it from the beginning, so she had no way of knowing). She nearly yelped and choked on her food as a flaming bird descended upon the area, circling the crowd close enough for her to feel the flame's warmth. When she finally followed the bird to it's eventual landing spot, she saw the man from earlier- Ezi'kel. He looked much more intimidating than before, and the gypsy opposite him was no less so. They both looked more ready to fight than to perform.

The tension was growing even stronger, and just before she could think to ask either of the twins if something was wrong, the strange gypsy shot forward with formidable speed, weapons drawn no less! The two magical forms dispersed, and the two gypsies were locked in a heated battle.

The ferocity with which the two men went at each other earned a slight gasp, the noble holding her hands to her lips to stifle a cry. This was far more of a battle than it was a show. Wide eyes watched as they pushed and parried each other. Just as one seemed to gain the upper hand and come close to a certain victory, the other would come back with a more impressive maneuver and change the pace. It was fearsome, it was intense...

...It was incredible.

Samara had never had this much adrenaline pumping through her veins in her entire life, and her heart hammered fiercely in her chest like a drum. It was almost enough to frighten her, but she couldn't take her eyes off the pair. Aside from a few flinched moves to avoid mist or the tickle of an errant ember, she was otherwise rooted to the spot, food forgotten at her side.

Eyes riveted to the gypsies, the young noble leaned forward as Ezi'kel approached his now fallen opponent. To her surprise, Ezi'kel helped the other male up, and the two stood together as the dragon and pheonix appeared once more. As the two finally turned and bowed, she released a breath she hadn't realized she'd been holding. The cheering echoed in her ears, the noble herself speechless and still reeling from the rush of adrenaline.

She snapped out of her reverie as the twins helped her up and escorted her towards some tents, looking over with some incredulity at their words. The fight sure looked real. Though, she supposed, if it had been real, someone would be dead after that. Still reeling from the elaborate display, she only felt some of the usual boost to her ego at being called 'pretty lady.'" Knees shaking slightly, she did her best to hide it, waiting behind the twins as they approached Ezi'kel's tent.

Samara vaguely wondered about the common little accent at the end of the gypsies sentences before her attention turned to her host as it were. His shirtless appearance (in addition to her still faster-than-normal heartbeat and tingling nerves,) caused her cheeks to color slightly. After all, she didn't see men shirtless in high society.
At his questions, she paused, unsure how to answer. How did she like it? She had never experienced such a show before. Despite having access to so much and growing up privileged, she had never felt thrills such as seeing the gypsy magic. But truth be told, the rush she got wasn't unpleasant. Did that make her abnormal or broken in some way? She was afraid to know. She stuck to his first inquiry.
"Yes...I snuck out when everyone was asleep." she admitted, feeling an odd mix of guilty, excited, and proud at sharing this with someone.

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