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Rylen Wintergreen

"I will not fail."

0 · 1,275 views · located in Tionchar

a character in “A Knight's Duty, A Witch's Innocence”, as played by CutUp

Description

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Castle of Glass | My Demons | On My Own | Breaking Inside | Unbreakable Heart | Human | Lion
{Honor, and loyalty is what sperates us from animals.}




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{N A M E}
Rylen Eric Wintergreen
{N I C K N A M E}
Ry, Winter
{A G E}
27
{G E N D E R}
Male
{R O L E}
The Knight
{B I R T H D A T E}
July 25th; Leoβ™Œ
{S E X U A L I T Y}
Heterosexual




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{Redemption is for those who deserve it.}




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{H E I G H T}
6'0 feet
{W E I G H T}
190 pounds
{E Y E C O L O R}
Green
{H A I R C O L O R}
Snow White
{A P P E A R A N C E}
Rylen is a tall, lean, and highly muscular young man with a very tanned complexion. Generally he wears loose white robes that is typicial for members of the Silver Guard. He also wears a pair of gladiator-type sandals. Overall Rylen prefers to wear loose clothing that allows a larger range of motion.
{O D D I T I E S}
As a warrior he has many scars all over his body. Has both ears pierced, and wears a gold chain attached to one ear that wraps around his neck.




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{If you follow your duty, you shall seldom err.}




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{P E R S O N A L I T Y}
{Brave | Loyal | Impulsive | Sarcastic | Ill Tempered}

As a Silver Guard Rylen has been trained, and conditioned to be a warrior, a loyal soldier. Make no mistake, that is what he is. But he is not as blindly loyal as his brothers in arms. This has quite often led him in trouble with his superiors. But he is still a devoted soldier that will easily put his life on the line in the name of something he believes in, and he believes in the Guard, and the crown it serves. As a warrior through, and through he is naturally brave, and generally fearless. He's fairly impulsive, and quite often acts on gut instinct, which has both hindered, and helped him. As a member of the Silver Guard he is used to the idea of scraficing himself, and is very comfortable with him dying. So he acts fairly reckless, and will be the first to jump head first into danger.

While on the surface he may seem like a proper, generally emotionless gentleman like any other member of the Silver Guard, underneath the surface he is a sarcastic, and somewhat immature young man. He quite enjoys cracking jokes, and has a bit of a dry wit to him. But this side of him doesn't often come out. He acts as a professional when around most people, and usually let's his hair when alone, or around people he trusts, and is comfortable around. So he doesn't let this side of himself show that often. He has quite the temper, and when angered he will drop the gentleman act, and become a loud, and disgruntled young man. When enraged he doesn't think very clearly, and is thus easier to manipulate.

Deep down Rylen is truly a caring individual who wants nothing more than to help, and protect people. That is why he is in the Silver Guard after all, being a Guard is means more to him than serving his country, but serving it's people as well. And that's something he's willing to die for. Rylen is also fairly chivalrous, and honorable. He won't attack an unarmed foe, a child, and would rather not fight a woman unless absolutely necessary. He is a big softy at heart, this is especially apparent when he's around children, and animals. He absolutely loves kids, and would one day love to have them.



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{There is no magical solution for the world's problems. Only through hard work and determination can any problem be solved.}




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{W E A P O N S}
  • Sword- Rylen's main weapon is a slim, curved, black longsword with a golden handle.
  • Ball and Chain- Rylen wears a ball and chain on his person at all times, and he often uses it as both a tool to move around, and a weapon.
  • Shortsword- This silver shortsword is a weapon given to all members of the Silver Guard.

{S T R E N G T H S}
  • Swordsmanship- Rylen is one of the most skilled swordsmen that is alive.
  • Agility- Rylen is naturally fast, and light on his feet. He is able to perform parakour-like movements with ease.
  • Strength- As any Silver Guard Rylen has above average strength.
  • Strategy- Rylen is a expert strategist of the highest caliber.
  • Combat- Even without his weapons Rylen is a excellent combatant.
  • Survival Skills- Rylen is a expert tracker, and survivalist, and is able to adept to any environment.

{W E A K N E S S E S}
  • Recklessness- Though he is a great strategist, most of the time he prefers to do things himself, and most of the time he goes in without a plan, or expect to come out alive.
  • Anger- Rylen's biggest downfall is his ill temper.
  • Easily Manipulated- From his temper to his sense of honor Rylen is rather easy to manipulate.
  • Range Combat- In combat his biggest downfall is range combat, as he is trained in close quarters.
  • Loyalty- He is loyal to a fault.
  • Blood Lust- Rylen is always up for a fight, and is hard to stop once he gets started.



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{Nothing can substitute a good sword, and the knowledge to use it.}




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{H O B B I E S}
  • Training| "My skill will never dull."
  • Whitling| "Tis' something to keep my hands occupied."
  • Drinking| "I am a Silver Guardsmen, I do not smell of ale."
{H A B I T S}
  • Cracking his knuckles| "My joints often need them."
  • Sharpening his blades| "A dull blade is a useless blade."
  • Rubbing his ear| "I only do that when I'm nervous, or uncomfortable. Forget I said that."[/color[[/list]
    [color=#FFB700]{L I K E S}
    • Swords| "The skill of a blade easily beats the power of magic."
    • Dogs| "Noble creatures to be sure."
    • Drinking| "For the last time, I do not smell of ale!"
    • Combat| "Nothing is quite like the thrill of battle."
    • The Silver Guard| "I swear my loyalty, and life in service to this country."
    • Children| "They are our future."
    {D I S L I K E S}
    • Magic| "Reliance upon such unatural arts renders one weak. Nothing compared to a good sword in hand."
    • Needless Killing| "There is no use in it."
    • Snakes| "Nasty beasts that deserve nothing but death!"
    • Liars| "You disrespect us both if you believe you can fool me."
    • Relying on others| "I can do this myself."
    {G O A L S}
    • Having a family| "It is unfortunate that my duty will prevent me from having one."
    • Finding redemption| "I-I made a mistake in questioning my duty. I shall not fault again.
    • Cleansing his country of mages| [color=#FFB700][b]"Vial scum!"
    {F E A R S}
    • Killing an innocent| "My blade shall not harm an innocent."
    • Dying outside of battle| "I refuse to die without my sword in hand."
    • Being useless| "There will always be need for warriors. Right?"




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{Life without struggle is like a fish without water, nonexistent.}




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{H I S T O R Y}
The Wintergreen family were farmers by trade, and Rylen was no different. He grew up a farm boy, and the only child of Tygen, and Kya Wintergreen. Their farm was on the outskirts of a small rural village. It was a fine upbringing, and Rylen had a fairly happy childhood. But even then Rylen wanted more, he wanted to do more, he wanted to be more than a farmer. So when he turned eighteen he enlisted in the royal military. Needless to say his parents weren't pleased, his father in particular wasn't happy. Rylen, and his father had a big falling out before he left for training. Unsavory words were said that neither meant. They didn't leave things on the best of terms.

After a few months of grueling training, things got worse. Word reached Rylen about a massacre, his entire village was destroyed, along with his home. There were no survivors. Among the dead included his parents. The culprit responsable was a mage that was soon captured, and executed. This fueled a fire inside Rylen that could never be put out. With his parents dead, and coupled with how they left things he went off the deep end. He threw himself completely into his training, and within three months he completed his training with the highest marks. This gained the attention of the legendary Silver Guard, and soon Rylen was recruited into the order.

The following years were hard work, but Rylen persevered, and soon he became one of the most promising rising stars of the order. His skill with a sword became legendary. He was easily able to rival any swordsmaster that trained their whole lives in the art with his natural speed, and agility. He was a natural. As time went on he was chosen for more, and more dangerous missions. He would take on the most dangerous, and suicidal of missions, and accomplish them with minimum casulties.

But as all good things must come to an end, as did this. His fall from grace came. He along with several other Silver Guardsmen were sent on a mission. A mage had taken control of a village, and entralled it's inhabitants with his magic. They were ordered to go in, and clear out the entire village, the controled villagers included. This was unacceptable to Rylen. For the first time ever a Silver Guardsmen question his orders, and didn't follow them. In the dead of night Rylen snuck into the village, and silently, and effectively killed the mage himself without any other causalties. He warned the now free villagers that they should leave as soon as possible.

When his superiors stormed the village, they were not pleased. Though he got his mission completed, he defied orders. And that's something that will not stand within the order. Rylen was captured, and imprisioned for weeks. The whole ordeal was quickly swept under the rug. Then word reached the Silver Guard of the fate of the villagers. Despite the death of the mage, his control over the villagers wasn't broken. Without a puppet master the villagers became confused, and attacked another town. The Silver Guard was quickly dispatched, and completely wiped them out.

This was a sobering experience for Rylen. He realized that he had to follow orders, and that whatever his superiors order, they order for a reason, and he shouldn't question them. With the death of Duke Leto, seeing this as an oppurtunity of redeeming himself, Rylen volunteered to track down the witch responsable. He agreed to completely follow the orders of his superiors. He has been tasked with taking her in, dead or alive.




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{I will not weaver from my duty.}




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{F C}
Sharrkan
{C O L O R}
#FFB700

{P R O T R A Y E D B Y}
Future God-Emperor CutUp

So begins...

Rylen Wintergreen's Story

Setting

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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The rustling of the leaves, and tree branches echoed above Aura Alessana as she ran from her unknown pursuer in a forest. Her pursuer was none other Rylen Wintergreen. She may have thought that she could elude him in the dense forest, but that's exactly what he wanted. He needs her far from innocent civilians, along with the added benefit of her running herself tired. He doesn't know how exactly skilled she is with her magic, so he can't take the chances of a lengthy battle in public where innocent bystanders would get in the way. No, he needed her secluded, and fearing for her life.

With a clearing coming up ahead Rylen settled down his pursuit to give her a false sense of safety. The element of surprise is a powerful one. Once her guard began to come down, and she steadily regained her breath, he'd strike. He leaped down from the tree tops, and landed on his feet like a predatory cat a few feet in front of her. At this point the forest was dead silent. Rylen's emerald eyes stared at her, almost right through her. He studied her body, and body language closely. He was prepared for anything.

While he got a fairly accurate description of her appearance, he was surprised of how young,....and beautiful she was. The swordsman's eyes narrowed in her with a look of equal contempt, and anger. She was a mage just like the one that killed his family, and destroyed his home. Rylen broke the silence by drawing his sword with the metal unsettlingly scraping against the sheath echoing around. Rylen placed his right foot forward, and left back as he held his sword in front of him with his right arm, and held his left arm behind his back. This was his go to fighting stance. He was ready for whatever came next.

"Aura Alessana, murderer of Duke Leto Pasquel. I am Rylen Wintergreen of the Silver Guard, third Vanguard of the twenty-first legion." Rylen introduced himself with a cold, yet professional demeanor. "I have been ordered to take you in, dead or alive. I would rather not kill you unless need be." He stated while his eyes were locked onto her. "You have three options, you turn yourself in without a fight, and I promise your death shall be swift. You can try to fight me, and die in battle. Or you could try and run again, and die tired. The choice is yours." No matter what her next move is, he's prepared. He can't allow her to escape. This is his last chance at redemption, and he won't let a single girl stand in his way.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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All she needed was one second. One second and she could do what she needed to shake this guy off. But it wasn't easy writing out ancient runes out in a leather-bound book as she ran for her life. Where had everything gone so wrong? She hadn't even been back in town for a night and she had been accused of murder, lost all but her most precious possessions in attempt to flee from the Silver Brigade or whatever they called themselves- she couldn't remember in that instant... All she knew was she had to clear her name and she had to do it fast before she lost everything.

See in the world of Mages she was what they called a 'Nomad'... she had no set base of operations, no family name that was based in the magical community, no master, no faction she was loyal to, and for the most part she was an unknown factor in any magical situation. She was young. She was 'untrained'. Little did anyone know about her years of training via various great mages that accompanied the gypsies that raised her, or the hours upon hours she had spent in dusty libraries and magic schools (however few and far apart those were) learning magic theory, and about the correlation of magic and nature and the elements and such. She was very well educated, most so than most of the High Mages of villages and kingdoms.

What this meant for her, was that once word spread of her supposed murder of the Duke Leto, an advocate for mages everywhere in the non-magical based world, she would be an enemy of everyone. She would have nothing, absolutely no where to hide. As a matter of fact posters of her were already spreading fairly fast, she was certain she would be unwelcome in her normal safe havens.

Now though was the matter of getting rid of this person. There were many routes she could follow; she could stand and fight... which would cause her to lose, indefinitely. She was good, but she had nothing on her pursuer she was sure... She could use magic, but that might fuel the theory of her being the murderer, especially if she had to do extensive damage to the knight... or she...oh... she could use him to her advantage even...

It was a long shot, but it could work.

The runes changed on the paper and as the pursuit quieted down a bit she paused to make him think she was losing steam. Far from it. She shot from tree to tree as fast as possible, each tree getting a rune engraved in it with an apology and a prayer to the Earth Element to help her. This was... this was a powerful spell, a very complex spell, and one that would need time and energy. As soon as she set her trap, she stumbled the short way out of the forest, trying to look as exhausted and weak as possible. It wasn't hard to do; she was very tired now.

She couldn't help but smirk at him as the- quite handsome- man before her gave her a few options. "I honestly am not partial to any of those options. I'm the type of girl that creates my own options, and I will not die for a crime I did not commit!!" there was a subtle accent to her soft voice. To many she sounded and looked like not much more than a child, but truly she was a very powerful young woman. "I will fight, but I will not die. If I wanted to die, it wouldn't be at the hands of a pretty boy like yourself!"

Yes, she would have to rile him up to get him to blindly walk into her trap... this she knew. It would be dangerous. She pulled out her spear and spun it around before taking a defensive position with it. Suddenly something lit up in her eyes. "Aha! Yes Silver Guard! I knew it was something to do with Silver! Sorry, I have a terrible memory when it comes to names," she looked almost sincere in her apology, even giving a small bow in offering. "So, Rylo, are you sure that you're ready to fight a TRUE mage? These aren't just parlor tricks that I know."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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"So you won't surrender? Unfortunate." He coldly said. "You speak as though I haven't faced other mages." Rylen rolled his eyes at her claims of being a 'true' mage. "The truth of the matter is, I've killed a many of mages in the name of justice, you are no different." Rylen wasn't even going to dignify her claims of innocence with a response. She was a murderer, and all murderers claim innocence when cornered. And he's not going to listen to it. He has his orders, and he must follow them. "And my name is Rylen. Remember it so when you're in the afterlife you can tell them who sent you."

Rylen pointed his sword forward towards her. He would have to be careful with that spear of hers. It has much more range than his sword. Rylen bent his knees, and lunged forward like a flash of lightning. The jewelry he always wears clanked against each as he rushed toward her, sounding almost like wind chims. Rylen first struck at her spear with enough force to stagger her. He then slashed at her head that merely cut a few loose strains of hair. This was a warning, he doesn't want to kill her unless he has too, and he's showing her he is fast enough to kill her.

He clashed once again againest her spear. He pushed against her spear this time, using his superior strength to his advantage. "Like I said, I'd rather not kill you. If you are truly inncocent then let the courts decide." He growled. "Do not push me girl. I will not fail." Rylen said as he readied his silver blade behind his back to strike. Rylen pushed harder on her spear to further show his strength.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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"You've never faced a mage like me," she quipped and let him swing with all his might. With each blow, she took a big step back, or even slid at times. All of this just to lead him into her trap, and it was working. Already she could see the first glyph she had marked on the trees. "Come on, you can't really be this weak can you?"

She had a feeling anger was his fatal flaw and would be her advantage. She stayed on her defense, watching every movement before finally making the opportunity to dodge swiftly and try to throw him off balance. "Please work," she whispered, calling upon the elements with all of her might as the glyphs around them started to glow, effectively barriering them within the circle of trees.

The air grew significantly warmer around them and she could feel the hairs on the back of her neck stand up as magic engulfed them momentarily. With vigor, she spewed out a mouth full of long, ancient words, and the air was taken from her lungs. The young girl fell to her knees gasping as her power was drained from her and put into the curse.

This wasn't a complicated curse, but it was in fact forbidden. It would make him unable to hurt her until she reversed it, but reversing it was going to be much harder than casting it. They were now bound together, whether he liked it or not. She had plans for this one. Not well thought out plans, mind you, but plans none-the-less.

Her last thought before blacking out was: "At least I got to use it on someone pretty."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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"Weak?! You little..." And with that Rylen became more ferocious with his attacks. But she blocked each one with expertise. She was fairly skilled with that spear, something even Rylen has to admit. He continued with his barrage of attacks. When she unexpectedly dodged he stumbled forward a bit, he hadn't realized how much energy he was putting into attacking her. He quickly regained his footing, and got back into his fighting stance. "Work?" He muttered to himself as he wondered what that could mean. He glanced around, and noticed strange markings on the trees around them. "Damnnit!" His widened at the realization of what he walked into.

Rylen tried to leap out of the trap, but it was too late, the trap was already sprung. He tried to slash his way through the magical barrier like a cornered animal to noavial. He heard Aura spoke some foreign words that made no sense to him. He turned to face her, and lunged at with with his sword, hoping he could kill her before she finished whatever unholy spell she was casting. But it was too late, he was engulfed by the magic coming from her.

When the magic dissipated Aura passed out. This was his chance. Whatever she did gave Rylen a hell of a headache, and his vision is somewhat impaired, but he can still get the job done. He rushed over to her side. He doesn't like the idea of killing an oppunent in their sleep, but he has no choice. Rylen held his sword high above his head, ready to plunge it into the witch's heart. As he brought it down closer to her chest his arm just stopped. Rylen tried with all his might to push his sword into her. But it was of no use. Something was holding him back.

The veins in his arms could be seen almost popping out as he continued to try, and kill her. "Damn you! What did you do to me?!" He growled in aggravation. He cringed as his headache intensified, and he felt a sharp burning pain within his chest. He groaned in agony as he was forced to his knees by the pain. And then he began seeing things, flashes of another place. He saw a dark room made of metal, and silhouettes of several people. Everything was dark, and blurry, the only thing he could make out was that he was in chains.

The clicking of a woman's high heels scraped across his mind as he saw a woman in a fancy black dress coming from the darkness. Her hair almost fading into the shadows behind her. A sinister smile crept across her face as she stared at Rylen as if he was her dinner. "Well, well, well someone's been a naughty boy again. Poor little Ry-Ry, always so noble, so foolish, just like mommy, and daddy, and that whore grandmother of yours." She chuckled as she walked closer towards him.

Rylen was snapped back to the present as his vision came back, and his headache began to subside. But the pain in his chest was still as intense. He quickly opened up his robes to see a pulsating black stain on his chest. The pain became more intense as he kneeled over again. He then began coughing up some sort of black blood onto the ground. "Wha....what did you do to me?!" He asked as he stared at the black blood.

The pain began to subside, and the mark on his chest began to shrink. It shrunk down to a sliver down his chest with several veins coming out of it. Rylen took in several quick, and panicked breaths.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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It was... well she wasn't sure how long it was before she woke up. As a matter of fact, it took her more than a few minutes to remember her own name. The blue-haired girl sat up and looked blankly at the man beside her, a small blush appearing on her face. He looked... familiar, even if only vaguely and in pain. What were they doing out in the middle of the forest? And why did her body ache so much?

The part of her brain that still had access to its recall recognized the runes on the trees. "Shit," she murmured, raising a hand to her head before looking over at her... companion? No, that wasn't the word she was looking for. Her memory... it was so fuzzy, and she fought just to remember where she even was. "Um... who... who are you?"

Aura struggled to sit up and get to her knees, her body was so weak from expelling so much magic. Why had she cast such a powerful spell? The only possibility was this guy was an enemy, and that she should be wary of his presence still... This was forbidden magic though, and as she fought to remember, she got glimpses of the spell itself in a book she read... it was a binding spell, and a powerful one at that. "I-I'm sorry... Did I... did I hurt you?" she asked nervously, looking for a way to escape.

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Rylen glared at Aura. What was she doing? What kind of game is she playing? "Are you kidding me?! I'm the man who's going to bring a murderer to justice! What game are you playing witch?!" His voice was getting louder, and angrier with each word he spoke. "What did you do to me?! What is this?!" Rylen demanded as he got up, and showed her the pulsating black sliver on his chest. He felt another surge of pain run through his chest that caused him bend back over. "What did you do to me?! What...why did you make me see that stuff?"

The pain began to whine down once again. "Who...was that woman in black? How did she know me? I...that didn't happen to me. I would have remembered." He muttered as he replayed those visions in his head. Rylen shook those thoughts out of his head to focus on the task at hand. "Reverse the spell witch!" Rylen ordered as he raised his sword. He tried to swing it at her, but once again his arm wasn't able to. "Do it or I'll kill you!" He continued to demand, even though he couldn't actually kill her now.

Before anything else could be said, Rylen went into a fit of coughing with more of that black ooze coming out. Rylen held a little pool of the blackness in his free hand, and stared at it. "What is this stuff? What...what did you do to me?" He asked, this time his voice was a mixture of both fear, and worry.

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Aura looked on in pure confusion. "I-I don't know who the woman in black was or what you saw. That's not part of the spell," she said as she inspected the runes. She already knew what had drained her energy and memory, and why everything was so foggy. That didn't help her cause any.

After a moment she turned to look at his chest and the black ooze he was coughing up. "This spell is a spell of binding. Hmm..." she looked so helpless for a minute. All she knew was that she was no murderer, and that she now had to figure out what was going "I'm... sorry. I'm sure I had no choice. What good would killing you have done? And I'm not a terribly strong fighter. I just... I'm sorry. So sorry..."

She found herself fumbling for something in the side bag that was slung across her chest. This is where she carried anything important to her; her quills, paper, a book of spells she had in case of emergency, and small vials of potions.

From this she pulled out two, one a glowing purple liquid and a smaller pink vial. "This... should help the pain," she handed him the smaller pink vial. "It at least should make it less severe. I'm not sure what that black ooze is, I've never seen it before, but I know it's not an effect of this particular spell... as for the mark on your chest... I've... heard of something like that in a book once, but I'd have to find the book again."

She took the purple vial herself and shuddered, the thick veil of fog in her brain lifting slowly but surely. While she knew she was missing memories, at least now she could remember SOMETHING, and why the memories disappeared like that. "I am Aura Testament Alessana, Mage of the Northern Realms," her voice was much clearer and more concise than earlier. "This spell ensures you can't kill me, and I will reverse it only after you've helped me clear my name. I did not kill the Duke. He was an acquaintance of mine, and I supported his cause. I only returned to town late in the night after a journey I had been on, and I checked right into the Inn on the outskirts of town. I'm not a murderer. I have no reason to kill anyone."

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Rylen glared at Aura with more intensity with each word she spoke. Him work with her? That will never happen. He has his orders, and being bound to her or whatever this was isn't going to change that. "I am not some hound to be chained!" He snarled as he took the pink vial from her hand. He placed it a pocket on his robes, he wasn't going to drink some strange vial of whatever it is given to him by a murderer, and a enemy. He didn't take candy from strangers when he was kid, and doesn't now.

"I do not believe you. Most murders are commited by someone close to the victim, and you are no different." Rylen explained. "You know something? I'm the kind of guy who creates his own options too." He stated as he withdrew his sword. "I don't need to hurt you, or kill you to take you in. You will face justice, one way or another." He said as walked closer to her, their bodies becoming mere inches away. "I'm done being nice." Rylen then grabbed her arms, making sure his grip wouldn't hurt her. He then picked her up off the ground like she was nothing, and tossed her over his right shoulder like she was a sack of flour.

Once she was up he grabbed her spear, and turned around towards the way he was chasing her. He started forward towards the town outside the town. "Don't struggle...no, scratch that struggle. Maybe I'll accidently drop your head on a rock." He stated as he continued forward. "Now, now Ry-Ry, don't struggle, this won't hurt...too much." The voice of the woman in black echoed in the back of his head. He quickly turned around, and scanned the surroundings. They were the only people in miles. He let out a loud grunt before continuing on.

"Another scrubbing eh? What are you doing to my kids to make them rebell so much?" The voice returned again. He quickly turned around, and scanned the area once again. And again nothing, no bushes rustling, no sounds of broken branches, or any other signs that they're being followed. "No, just this one. I told you from the begining it was a mistake to take him. Given your history with his family it's expected for you to be.." "Finish that sentance, and be turned into a worm! Do not speak to me as if I was a child! Yes his family has caused me great grievance, but the mere untapped potiental of this one is worth any risk."

Rylen could hear more voices now, now a deep man's voice hardened by years of experience. The man's voice sounded familiar, but he couldn't place his finger on it. Rylen kept moving forward, trying to ignore the voices. "If he starts to remember all hell would break loose. If this got out to the others..." "It won't matter. The others are good little boys, and girls. They'd think him mad." "You're obsession with this one is.....disconcerting. If he becomes a problem again, he will be killed."

Rylen stopped in his tracks when he heard that. He dropped Aura on the ground without any sort of care. He drew his sword, and surveyed the area. At this point Rylen began looking paler, and was sweating quite a bit. "Who's out there! Show yourself coward!" He shouted, and of course no one was there. His head began pounding again, and his mark was acting up, but he ignored it, and let out a pained grunt. "We also need to deal with our Duke problem. He's becoming quite the annoyance." "I have a few ideas in mind." "Good...wait, is he listening?" "Do not worry about him, the spell will take effect in a moment, and he won't remember a thing."

"Board up the doors, lock up the windows, cause the Midnight Lady comes to steal your soul, and fill it back up. Steal your soul, and fill it back up. Steal your soul, and fill it back up." The sound of children singing that repeated over, and over in his mind, ringing in his ears. Rylen's eyes widened, and he dropped his sword. "Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!" He yelled as he grabbed at his hair, and fell to his knees. More black ooze began to fill his mouth, and he spat out a bunch of it on the ground.

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Aura was absolutely confused. She understood him not trusting her, and his anger was justifiable. She couldn't blame him for doing his job and she wouldn't. To be honest, she wasn't even shocked when he picked her up and threw her over his shoulder. "Ah! Put me down, dammit!" she hissed and squirmed a bit before deciding just to go limp. In this position there wasn't much she could do unless she wanted to turn into a total pervert.

What really confused her was when he turned around as if though he heard something. The forest was silent except for the two of them, mostly his grunting and breathing. "Um... What's the matter?" she asked quietly just before he dropped her. "OW!"

She landed on her back near his feet and the breath was taken from her lungs for a moment with the pain. What was he seeing or hearing? He must be hallucinating. There was no other explination. She sat up and looked at him in shock as he shouted and dropped his sword.

"Rylen?" she stood up and rushed to his side.

She should run.

He wanted to kill her.

She should flee as fast as she could, but... she couldn't leave him in such pain. She wanted to know what was wrong with him and why her spell had caused this to happen.

There was only one thing she could think of to do; more magic. She rested her hands on his back lightly as to not alert him and started whispering a healing spell, a mid-level one that was meant for basic generalize healing.

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"Midnight Lady. Midnight Lady." Rylen repeatedly muttered to himself as his headache felt like it was pounding his skull in, and his mark felt like a heated blade running through his chest. But then he felt a hand on his shoulder, Aura's hand. For some reason that started to put him at ease, and then he heard her say more foreign words. Another spell, fantastic. Rylen tried to pull away from her, but the pain was too intense, he'd just have to deal with whatever she was doing. He's in condition to try, and fight off whatever she was doing.

He then began feeling better, his color was coming back, he wasn't sweating nearly as much, his headache was all but gone, and his chest pain began to ease. The mark on his chest also began to shrink. Was she.....helping him? "Did you just.....why?" He asked in confusion. He didn't understand why'd she help him when she had the perfect oppurtunity to escape. "I....thank you." He thanked, unsure of what to say. He wasn't quite sure what to make of her. For one she did place some sort of curse on him that caused him some unimaginable pain, but then she helped him.

"This is still all your fault." He stated, regaining his cold composure, as he got up. "But I.....may believe something else is at work here. I....saw, and heard something. I don't know if it was some sort of hallcuination caused by you, but it'd be worth investigating." He stated as he picked his sword back up. "Until I properly believe your innocence, if I ever do, you are going to be in my custody. You are my prisioner. If you try to run I will find you, and capture you once again, and this time I will bring you directly to the Silver Guard. And we do not take kindly to mages that curse our bretheren."

Rylen picked up her spear, and handed it to her as a sign of good will. "This is not a negotiation. You will agree to my terms, or I take you in. If you are truly innocent as you say, this is your best chance at proving it. Do we have a deal?" He asked with a stern look, one that say agree or die. "Some call me Ry, if you so wish." He stated with the faintest of smiles.

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The healing sapped even more strength out of her that she didn't really have to sacrifice, but at the same time... she wanted to help his pain. "I'm not a bad person... I want to help people, not hurt them. As for the hallucinations, I have no clue... this spell wasn't SUPPOSED to cause anything like that. I'll have to read up on it a bit more to see if there's ever been anything like that reported, because that wasn't in ANY of my studies," the girl looked flustered and apologetic. She did feel guilty for his pain, whether it was really her fault or not. It didn't matter, her curse had triggered it.

She stood up and looked at him curiously. "Fine, then. I'll go with you. I have... a feeling our paths lead the same course anyways," she gave a slight bow and took her spear gratefully. "I have no where I can go anyways. By now the entire magical community probably blames me for the Duke's death as well... I mean I supposed I could cast more magic and run but... I'm all out of power right now."

Finally she gave him a big grin and outstretched her hand. "Aura, though everyone calls me Tessa, a derivative of my middle name, Testament. Mostly because we had another Aura in the gypsy caravan I was raised with. Pleased to meet you!" she chirped happily, as if their earlier confrontation was nothing to worry about. For some reason though... she didn't feel threatened by him anymore though... it could be the connection that was now between them, or it could be her willingness to trust anyone. "That pain... that's not a side affect from my magic... I know that much. If I wanted you to be in that much pain I wouldn't have healed you. I'm kind, not stupid."

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Rylen was a little surprised at how easily she was willing to trust the man who not moments ago was trying to kill her. He's still not quite sure whether he can trust or not, or if she's even telling the truth. For all he knew this could be some sort of elaborate plan. But for now he'll have to watch her for now. When she reached out her hand with a huge grin he was caught off guard, and slightly blushed. "Very well Aur.....Tessa." Rylen replied as he took her hand, and gave her a small nod.

"Yes, well that remains to be seen doesn't it?" Rylen slightly smirked at Aura's claims of being kind, not stupid, making note of their current situation. "We should start the investigation in the nearby town. There's a inn there I believe. We should rest for awhile, and then go to the local library." Rylen stated as he started towards the town in question. "There's something that I need to look up. From there it would probably be prudent to go to the Veneficas Den as well to investigate this mark. That'd be the best place for it. Wouldn't you agree?"

Rylen lead the way towards the town, with a rather hasty pace. "Tessa, I have a question. Why are you here in Tionchar? You are obviously foreign. And what reason would someone have to supposeably framing you?" He asked, making sure she knew he still didn't believe her innocence. "You mentioned a gypsy caravan before correct? Where you grew up? Why'd you leave? Where are the other gypsys?" He continued to question as if this was some sort of interrogation. Which it sort of was. She's still his main suspect in a murder after all, and that's something he won't let go.

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Aura was already starting to walk in the direction of the nearest town. β€œThere’s not much in the library, to be honest. Most of them are old history books on war and stuff. I’ve read them all. Twice, some of them," she said in an off-hand fashion, as if that was something normal for a 19-year-old girl to do. "There's another library, its kind of a side-road thing, it used to be a temple where monks lived, but now there's only a few monks left to guard it... They have a wide variety of books, and will give us shelter. I honestly feel it'd be safer for me to avoid towns for a few days, until the riot over me quiets a bit."

Still she followed him as he sped past her; after all she had much shorter legs than he and had to half run to even keep up with him.

Something about him was drawing her towards him though... she couldn't explain it, besides it possibly being a side-effect of the spell. Perhaps the bond worked both ways and she had never read that part? It was a forbidden spell after all.

His quest startled her and made her think for a second. "Well, I'm in Tionchar because I have friends here, and because I'm following a lead on something I've been investigating for a long time. The last hint of clue I had was in the city, and I needed access to the library. As for my framing, your guess is as good as mine. I'm not a well-known quantity in the magical world. I am... a 'rouge' basically. I have no affiliations with any mages, or any clans or cults or anything. I travel too much, and I learn too fast. I've never had a real tutor. To most in the magical world, that's scary. I have no one to defend me there. For non-magical people, that makes framing me less threatening. If I were executed, no one would blink an eye, there would be no threat of mages knocking at their door with spells and the like. I'm a safe person to blame this on without threat of blow back, I would assume."

It was all true, and what she had already assumed thus far; with no one to defend her honor, passing the death of the Duke onto her was... safe.

"I was raised by the gypsies... my parents, my hometown, was destroyed when I was little. I was too young to remember anything. I honestly didn't remember I was not born of the gypsies until I was older. About two years ago I found my way back, and started trying to find any whereabouts on what happened, or who was responsible for it. That's why I was traveling and investigating things. I'm from the far North, where it always snows, near large mountain ranges," Aura said thoughtfully, a whisp of a sigh in her voice.

She walked for a bit more before answering his other questions, thinking on the day and night's events so far. Since she entered the area it was nothing but stress, worry, and fear, and now... now she felt calm again, as if she had nothing more to worry about. It was really beautiful, now that she could see the mid-day sun filtering through the leaves on the trees. Birds were still fairly quiet, with the commotion of two intruders walking through their forest at a fast pace. Squirrels were back out foraging. This was the nature that She had grown to enjoy over the years. She closed her eyes as she walked. "I left the gypsies to find my past. My contract with the Elements doesn't much help my case to be honest... but they have a fairly set path of wandering through festival seasons like this... this time a year... hmmm they're probably out East doing a few select marketplaces and stuff. I haven't really traveled with them since I was 15," she grinned up at him. "Any other questions?"

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Rylen listened as they went on, making sure to keep aware completely of their surroundings. He's paranoid like that. "Very well. We will go to this temple instead. Monks should not be a problem to deal with if the need arises." He coldly, and callously stated. "Lead the way." He said as he slowed down a bit, and allowed Aura to lead the way. He mauled over her story in his head, still not sure whether to believe her or not. But for now this is the truth, and from what he can tell she isn't the type to murder someone.

"For what it's worth, I....understand how you feel. My parents were murdered, and my village burned to ashes too. By a mage." Rylen stated with a deep sigh. "My parents were farmers that came from a long line of farmers. My parents expected the same of me. But when I turned eighteen I joined the army. We didn't leave things on the best of terms." He said with a heavy heart. "After it was happened I had to go in, and idenify the bodies...they were barely recognizable. The only thing I truly recognized was the gold earring my mother always worn." Rylen said as he rubbed his left ear.

"The last words I said to my parents was 'Go to hell'." Rylen stated still with his cold tone. While he did regret that, and wishes he could take that back, but he can't. What's done is done, and nothing can change that. So why focus on that? "Where were you at the time of the murder? Were you with anyone that could collaborate your story? How many people have you been in contact with since coming to this kingdom?" He asked, bringing the conversation back on track, and off of him.

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Such a sad story... Aura couldn't imagine having the last thing she said to her parents being something so mean, or even to her adoptive father. Last she had seen the older man they had parted on happy terms, though she knew if anything happened to him she'd be devastated by the loss.

She walked ahead of him in the direction of the temple, wrapped up in her thoughts. "I'm... sorry for your loss. My family was killed by mage hunters. There are mage villages out there, people that can use magic that just want to live normal lives and have families... we were a village like that. And a bunch of mage hunters decided to attack us knowing we probably wouldn't fight back," she explained, glancing back at him.

A small smile played on her face. "I checked in at the Inn closest to the Royal Library, and then went straight there... there wasn't anyone there that I saw, and I was alone. I was there for two-three hours before going back to the Inn. That gap though is the supposed time when he was murdered, so all the Innkeeper would be able to tell you was when I first checked in, when I came back and whatever state I was in at the time," it was a simple equation, she knew. In the end she still looked like a guilty party for the simple fact that the time frame she was at the library looking some things up, was the time the Duke was supposedly murdered. "That was the only person I saw besides a few random men that were drinking and probably too drunk to actually notice me... Other than that, the streets were quiet, and if the librarian was there I didn't see him at all."

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"Your sympathies are...appreciated, but unnecessary. What's done is done, I cannot change that. My duty to my country, and it's people is what's important now. Nothing else. It's pointless to dwell on things that we cannot change." Rylen stated, keeping up his cold exterior. He mulled over all the information she gave him, trying to discern whether she is truly innocent or not. Things weren't looking good for her. "Without someone to collaborate your story, things look....grim. You said you've spoke to the Duke before correct? So you have oppurtunity, and means. Though your motive is unclear." He said as he scratched his chin.

This was a puzzle indeed. All signs point to Aura, but yet she doesn't have the motive. As he continued to follow Aura, he placed his hand on her shoulder to stop her from going forward. "Wait." He ordered. Then some rustling could be heard coming from the bushes near them. Though Rylen looked no more worried than usual. Then a duck came from the bushes, along with a row of several ducklings. As they pasted in front of them the slightest of smiles crept across his face. As soon as the last one passed he released Aura.

The duo soon arrived to the temple Aura was leading the way to. "So this is the temple?" Rylen asked as he looked the rather beat up temple over. Rylen cautiously entered the front enterance of the temple. As he entered his eyes scanned every inch of this new environment, and his left hand gripped his sheath, readying himself for whatever may come. Even though this temple was inhabited by monks, he doesn't take any chances. Rylen stopped in his tracks, and quickly drew his sword, and in seemingly one motion he swerved around behind him, and held his sword at the throat of one of the monks.

The monk took in a nervous gulp as he stared at Rylen, and Aura. Rylen looked the monk up, and down, and once he was convinced he was a monk he put his sword away. "Apolgizes. One should not sneak up on a Silver Guard." Rylen said with a small nod.

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Paradise.

That was the first word that came to Aura's mind when she saw this place. It had long since held a strong hold over her heart, from a time when childhood had gripped her and books were the only thing that mattered.

The outside of the building was quite decrepit, with stone brick having been long chipped and worn away on most of the face. Rubble from what was obviously a prior attack scattered in piles on the ground. It was obviously well cared for at the same time; there was slightly newer construction on one of the towers and even the rubble was put into polite little piles to be cleared away.

The front doors were of an old, thick oak, with simple iron designs on the outside, and were heavy to push open, the front entrance was a medium-sized room, used for greeting visitors before they were ever allowed into the inner sanctum. Very few people ever learned what lie behind this front room until they proved worthy.

Aura was already ahead of Rylen, making her way to a beat up couch when she heard a slight commotion. She turned to see her unintended comrade holding his sword to the throat of a young monk that she only vaguely recognized from her last visit. He wasn't much younger than her, but the terror on his face made him look like a child.

"I-I'm sorry, sir," the boy bowed nervously and rushed off through a door at the side of the room.

"We wait here, for now," Aura explained and sat down with a sigh. "Though that doesn't help our case any. Try to calm down a bit. They don't take lightly to weapons here."

"Ah, Lady Alessana," it was mere moments after the words left her mouth that an elderly monk wandered into the room. His robes were simple; a white robe with black pants and a silver sash worn over his shoulder. This was different than the rest of the monks who, while they also wore white, and brown as well, had slightly more modern-looking clothing. The white and silver and black was a sign of age and experience; he was an Elder. There were a few whisps of grey hair at the top of his head, and his eyes were a piercing blue. "I am glad to see you alive. Word travels quickly of your supposed treachery to the magical world. I take it you seek sanctuary?"

Aura stood and bowed deeply to the senior before walking over and embracing him fondly. "Yes, please. I find myself in a desperate situation, and seeking information on a magical matter as well," she glanced over to Rylen and then back at the monk. "This is Rylen Wintergreen, a Silver Guard sent to hunt me. We have... reached a sort of agreement and are helping each other in the meantime."

The monk grazed his eyes over the young man curiously. "She cursed you didn't she?" he said casually, as if he could see it written all over him. "Though that doesn't seem to be the only magic that has been used on you... You trust this man?"

As if her use of a curse met next to nothing, his gaze met Aura's again and the girl nodded. It wasn't a lie. She did trust Rylen now, and not JUST because of her curse... while that was a major contributing factor, she felt he was much gentler than he let on, that was proven by how he had forced her to let the ducklings pass earlier. It was... endearing.

"Weapons must be left in the armory at all times, if we admit you into the sanctum. The armory is easy to access, provided you have proof of who you are," the monk told him. "I am Elder Ataras, the oldest monk in this temple. My word is law, though Lady Alessana is well aware of the rules and will guide you well. We do not take well to people who abuse our kindness or cannot abide by the terms of sanctuary. No harm is to come between you or any of my sons. If they hassel you about anything, tell me directly. I will punish them as need be. Understood?"

Aura glanced over at Rylen with a kind, trusting smile. He seemed the type to be good at following rules.

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"I apologized, what more do they want?" Rylen asked in response to Aura telling him to calm down. He's always calm. He just stays on his toes, at all times. What's so wrong about being prepared? As an elderly monk greeted them, it became apparent that he, and Aura were well accquainted. When Aura introduced him, Rylen gave a small, and respectful bow. He was caught off guard when the monk instantly realized Rylen was cursed. Was it that apparent? When asked if she trusted him, Aura gave a nod, which caused Rylen to slightly blush. It was....cute that she trusted him so easily, and something he's not used to. But what bothers him is that he's not sure he feels the same. How can he completely trust someone who just cursed him a few hours ago?

Rylen glared at the elderly monk when he ordered him to relinquish his weapons. He is not comfortable without a weapon, in fact he is never without one, ever. Not even while sleeping. Most, if not everyone, would call this paranoia, but Rylen calls it being cautious. He is even more so when around mages. "Very well Elder, I will relinquish my weapons." Rylen sighed as he drew his took his sheath off, and unwrapped the chain-ball from his waist. "But I cannot allow my silver blade to leave my side. It is the only proof of my membership within the Guard, and I am not permitted to part with it under any circumstances. But I swear I will not draw it within these walls, you have my word as a Silver Guard." Rylen said with a stern, and adament face. This was something nonnegotiable to him. He takes his role as a Silver Guard very seriously, which is something he hopes the monk will understand.

"I require all books, and information you have on the legends, and folk lore of Tionchar." Rylen stated. He wasn't going to tell what he was investigating just yet, he had to be sure his suspicions were legitimate first before he revealed anything. "I shall also need some texts pertaining to the time before the formation of the Silver Guard as well." Rylen added, despite the fact that most, if not all information on the Guard is restricted, and the only information on the Guard available to the public is mere stories, fairy tales told to children. But one can hope. "I thank you for your cooperation." He said, with the upmost professionalism.

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Character Portrait: Aura Testament Alessana Character Portrait: Rylen Wintergreen Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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Ataras looked on with no great concern in his eyes, watching the young man remove his weapons before nodding. "Very well, then. I will allow you your one blade," he said, his tone suggesting he would have never forced the man to remove his weapons if he had declined. A young monk, the same from before, rushed in, bowing to them and taking the weapons to the armory. "Ah, Aura would be the one to help you with what you need. I'm afraid I haven't been through our catalog in some time. She, however, knows every book in these walls. Before that though, I'll show you where you'll be staying, and where the food is served during meal times."

He turned and headed through the door, taking Aura's arm in his as if he needed a guide. The young woman smiled and wrapped her arm around his and walked assuredly into the Outer Sanctum. "This is the 'public' area of the temple. It sees the most foot traffic and is where everyone rooms," was her quick explanation as they walked through a curved hall. As they passed a window you could see a courtyard where there were many young men training with spears and hand-to-hand combat. Every movement was fluid and beautiful, as if it were more an art than anything. Many of the movements were reminescent of what Aura had performed earlier that day.

"Ah here, the guest room. Unfortunately we don't have many of those, so you'll have to share. She usually sleeps in the library anyways," the Elder chuckled and released her arm. "Lady Aura, please change into more appropriate attire. it wouldn't do for the students to be getting distracted."

"Yes, Elder," she chuckled and opened the door to the room. It was simple, but clean, with three beds and a simple dresser to store belongings. "I lost most of my stuff on the run anyways. Guess it's a good thing I keep extras here... Come on, Rylen. I'll show you around as soon as I change!"

The Elder nodded in approval and then continued his way down another hall, as if being called by something the two youngsters couldn't hear.

[color#ff9999]"He's a good man. He protected me long ago when no one else was willing to. He taught me much of my basics in fighting and magic, and has always welcomed me here with open arms... I'd be lost without this place,"[/color] she explained to him as she poked through a drawer in the dresser and pulled out some white robes. She pouted for as second before looking at Rylen. "No peeking!!"

Then without any further hesitation she began to strip out of the dirty outfit she was wearing and slip on the clean white robes.