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Crane Ichabod

A lone vagrant knight that endlessly search's for something he's lost. Shrouded in a feeling of both dread and sarrow, his existance is regarded in rumor as both fairy tale and ghost story.

0 · 485 views · located in Edasler Bria

a character in “A Wish and a Regret”, as played by Wake

Description

Crane Ichabod
Image

Theme first image: Sad Romance by Thao Nguyen Xanh
Theme second image: The Battle Is To The Strong
Role: Male one - The Vagrant Knight
Gender: Male
Nickname(s): The Execution Rider, Knight of Solitude, the phantom knight
Age: Unknown
Race: Unknown, Assumed human.

Appearance: Crane rides on a horse with hair that is like silver. The horse has no name, simply a creature he rides upon. Under moon light the horse seems to gain an unearthly glow, and seems stronger then most breeds. Crane himself is a large man, nearly a head taller then average men, and is dressed entirely in a suit of heavy plate-mail armor, the metal of which seems to wrap around his body. There are strands of a strange black fabric that sprout from the back of his armor with dull spikes at the ends. On rare occasions in what seems to be a trick of the light, one can seem to spot a faint red glow from certain parts of his armor.

Preferred Clothing: Is always in his armor, never takes it off, not even to eat or sleep.

Height: 6'7"
Weight: 223 Lbs (305 if you include the weight of his armor)
Hair Color: Unknown
Eye Color: Unknown

Personality: Crane is a solemn and quiet person. Not because he dislikes conversation but because he rarely finds things to speak about. Small talk is something he's a bit unused too. Instead he seems to often be in a state of apparent meditation, seeming to always be reflecting on something. Left alone with his thoughts he has become quite philosophical, coming to look at the world around him in a sort of detached view. While this can make him appear almost emotionless at times it gives him a more cosmopolitan out look on the world.

It is to be remembered that he is a knight. Though he might be more lenient towards what most consider amoral he still has his own sense of honor, and will hold to it as best he can. While years of Isolation and fighting may have left his morals askew, he tries to hold onto some of the concepts of justice that were instilled in him . Cruelty, simply for cruelties sake is something he cannot tolerate and he will reprimand someone for needlessly cruel actions.

Quirks: Crane never takes off his armor for any reason, not even to eat or sleep. In fact no one has ever observed him eating at all, and with the way his armor covers his body know one can tell if he ever really sleeps when he stops to rest.

Often Crane seems more active and able at night.

He does seem to an awful lot about the strange creatures of the fae and their habits. Sometimes explaining facts and remaining aware of their presence, mostly when trying to avoid them.

Another, more gruesome, habit he has is to behead his enemies when he gets a chance during battle. His nick name, The execution rider, comes from his constant decapitations of his opponents. Most battles end with him burring the heads of his slain enemies.

Likes: Moonlight, The sound of running water, wind, rain, white flowers, flute music.
Dislikes: Bright lights, loud erratic noises, sadistic or self-serving people.
Hobbies: Carving wooden statuettes, listening to the weather, and secretly is a fan of reading poetry.

Phobia(s): Dishabiliophobia- Fear of undressing in front of someone.
Paralipophobia- Fear of neglecting duty or responsibility.
Politicophobia- Fear or abnormal dislike of politicians.
Potamophobia- Fear of rivers or running water.

Weapon: He carries a Zweihander(two handed great sword) on his back as his primary weapon, the sword itself is six feet in length an weighs nearly eight pounds. As a second option he keeps a three foot long Katzbalger (one handed sword) on his saddle along with a metal kite shield for when he needs close quarters fighting. While he may use the sword as his primary weapon he has had training with maces and pole-arms like spears and halberds.

Oddly enough, while he's plenty skilled in sword use, the sword isn't his 'true' weapon. If asked what he means by that, he'll simply reply that there is another weapon he is more specialized in and say no more.Image

Fighting Style: Crane has a very aggressive melee fighting style. His way of fighting is to continue advancing, put his enemy on the defensive, and attempt to use his own weight to over power an opponent. He is well experienced in fighting with heavy armor on, and often takes advantage of his suit protection to soak up smaller blows while he moves in for the kill. Much of his armored style of combat actually relies on grappling moves, and it is common to see him attempt to wrestle his advisories to the ground.

Abilities: Crane is very strong, a product of being weighed down in such heavy armor all the time, and can overpower most opponents with brute force. Something about Crane and his actions imply that he might have other talents beyond brute force, but he chooses not to disclose them at this time.

Personal History: Crane's history is a bit of a mystery as he keeps a tight lip on the subject and has few acquaintances that would tell of his origins. It's only known that he start appearing on the edges of civilization, sometimes near battlegrounds, and was known to hunt down brigands in the wilds. He became a bit of a ghost story among outlaws and bounty hunters, and tales would be spread about a lone knight that strode into a bandit camps at night and try to take their heads.

The only thing that could hint at his origin is the symbol of his order on his shield, but it has been scratched off as if to hide it.
(more will be revealed as time passes)


Other:Crane will at times give of an odd feeling, something that feels like a mixed aura of dread and sorrow.

So begins...

Crane Ichabod's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
In the hours after the dusk, the knight no longer felt the stiffness that had plagued him during the day. He could feel the soothing comfort of the night wash over him, the shadows of the dark cascading over his body like a gentle shroud. And he welcomed the feeling, for it empathized with the melancholy in his own heart.

It had been a few hours when the knight known as Crane and the young maiden he had met that mourning, Knell, had entered the town. Knell had needed food and a place for rest, and so they were forced to stall their search for her companion for the night. It had been a few hours since he and Knell had rented a room in the inn for her, the girl wandering off at some point while he was securing a place to stable his horse. The knight was not overly worried though. This town seemed nice a clean for the most part, and had little in the way of apparent squalor and thievery. Besides, it might have been for the best that she left the inn when she did, considering how rowdy it's occupants had gotten with their drinking afterward.

He had been walking down the road, when he heard Knell's voice again. Following the sound he found her standing on a bridge over the river, singing as if too the waters bellow. The knight stayed where he was, listening to both the melody of her song and the sound of the running water. The knight never like crossing steams such as this, but he didn't mind listening to the sound they made all their own. And the song Undine girl sang, he could not resist the feeling of ease it brought him. He and his... kind were susceptible to the whims of song. Crane could not help but feel the empathy in the words.

Leaning against the light post, the knight quietly indulged himself in the peaceful moment.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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It was quite the disaster… Not only was Echo stranded on this horrible drought of a place called “land,” but now she was without her closest friend too. Echo had watched as her dear friend tumbled down a cliff, possibly to her doom… However, Echo refused to believe that her only friend had gone for good. She held hope in her heart the hope that Knell was still alive somewhere. Unharmed. Safe. Maybe even waiting for Echo to come and find her.

If only they didn’t go to land… None of this would have ever happened. However, much worse things could have happened… Nevertheless, Echo eagerly awaited the time when she and Knell could return to the sea once again. There was nothing on the parched land for them and sooner or later… The sea would be safe again.

To reach the forest Echo saw Knell fall into, she had to follow the path down into a town that lead to the forest. So, Echo went to town. On her way, she noticed the statue like night that had fallen around her. It was silent and still… If she concentrated, Echo could hear bats calling in the distance and crickets chirping. However, as she walked the nearby creatures of the night fell silent. They were fearful of some unknown predator ready to snatch their lives away. Of course, Echo would not harm them. However, there was no way for them to know that.

Echo stumbled the whole way down to town. Gravity was horrible for Undine on land… And it was Echo’s worst enemy as well as fear. This was what had hurt Knell.

When she arrived to the town, she heard gorgeous singing… Singing from one she knew greatly. Even the song sounded familiar.

“Cel irrui haes dha weyar serrailr du irrui? Tha rairhd'r sallrasdaiulr, llus dha lairhd dhairr nird raeya. Tha ril feaildr dha raer ssainrul eln failc, er aid ruar du fan. Aln dha nuulr uyashaen raiya ir dhaais frarrailrr~” Knell sang the Undine lullaby… The heart of the song shined through with her voice. It was such an alluring song. A song that made Echo miss the ocean even more. However, she was content as long as she could be with her dearest friend.

Joy rushed in as things finally settles in. Knell was fine! It was the most wonderful and blessed thing to know that Knell was okay. Nothing was in vain. Everything would be alright now. The joy of Knell prevented Echo from noticing those nearby.

“Tha rdesr rairhd if dha faidsh fresc rcaiar uyashaen, luw, rad irruisrarll nsaen e raldra nsaen. Whaira dha llairh rwain dhsuirh dha wedasr, dhairr shuail irrui ul irruis shuislairr du rraaf, eln fsailr irrui shuirr. Whasa irrui esa layas erula.” Knell Stopped.

Still failijng to notice the others around, Echo continued the song, responding to Knell. It was so easy for Undine to get so lost in song that they were unaware of their surroundings. Song was the very heart of the species. Echo was not one who could resist a melody she could hear.

“Whal irruis rurd rairdal du dha weyar, Haes dhan faesul irrui fesc huna wasa irruis haesd raiar, Ferruw dha rraiddasailr wedasr er dhairr rhuw irrui dha nef du whasa irrui farulr” The song flowed from Echo as her heart felt the song deeply. It was a bittersweet remembrance of the place she called her home… This song was meant to help children relax…To calm the child who is even most fearful… It spoke of the home Echo and Knell came from.

“Wedsh er dha nuul sairar hairh efuya, rairdal er dha saiffrar railr irrui du rraaf, Lad dhan sallrasd dha dsidh du irrui, Yui wairr layas fa erula whal dha llairh warsuna irrui fesc eln sunllusd irrui waidh dhaais wesndh Wedsh er dha rruw llairh rairhd if dha wedasr raica rdesr. Thairr wairr rad irruis llaesr llruw eweirr eln fsailr irrui faesa, hasa irrui wairr erweirrr farulr” Echo’s voice was smooth and soft… It swayed from verse to verse like the pushing and pulling of the ocean. Her eyes were closed as she pictured the place where she belonged… Hopefully she could be there soon.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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She quietly ceased her singing with that one verse of the sweet lullaby she recalled from the days of her dear childhood, from when it was she still had her mother at her side, nurturing her, giving her the love only she ever could. The days before she’d been forced away, far, far away. Knell remembered her mother’s face, the sadness she bore for Canaan’s death, and her voice. Her mother had been as a siren . . . beautiful in many respects; Maris was truly an amazing woman. And . . . how dearly she was missed by her daughter, that lullaby was one that Maris had sung to Knell many times to sooth her to sleep when fear had consumed her young soul, and staved off the needed rest. It always reminded her that she was not alone, she at least had a mother who loved her.

Knell’s own voice mixing with such a placid song, it made for quite the listening. Yet, one verse was enough for her, for now it was. It was enough to remind her of the sea, of the warm and thick water. Yes, she did miss it, she missed the elegance she held onto within the ocean, being able to swim about so freely with no fear of injury by falling, being able to glide through the clear liquid with such freedom and speed . . . but she couldn’t deny that she was beginning to also love how very light air was as well. Even if she was restricted by gravity, air was so very easy to move about in, in a way, it was sort of liberating. ’I wonder if this is what mother felt when she first came upon land.’

Don’t know, but you seem like you’re a lot like her yourself Knell, so it’s likely you and her share the same sentiments.’ Canaan answered her. This caused Knell to smiled just a bit as she remained with her head laying upon the cool stone of the bridge’s handrail, her face shielded from the pleasant night air. The Undine girl took in a deep breath as she thought about her mother, and about her home—the sea. She may not have been loved by those who were suppose to be her family, but the ocean was her home, even if she was growing to love the land more and more with each precious, passing second. No matter what unpleasantness had occurred with her, Knell was still loving the land very much. She just wished for Echo to be with her then . . . that they hadn’t of been separated earlier that day.

Oh, she hoped that she would be able to meet up with her dearest friend again soon. . . . Thinking about the look that had been on Echo’s face as she had tumbled down into the forest that day, it made Knell’s heart feel so heavy inside of her chest—as if it were sinking into the depths of her stomach. That look had been one of terror, of fear. . . . How she wished she had not stricken such emotions into her friend, because of a single mis-step she managed to scare her dearest one. Thinking on this made Knell released a forlorn sigh from deep within herself, her clumsiness would make her worry another. Yet, at the same time, there was an undeniable fact about her being separated from Echo that left Knell a bit at ease—the separation had allowed the young Undine woman to meet Crane. Even if their meeting had not been under the best circumstances, Knell wasn’t upset or angry about that, no, she was actually glad to have met someone else who would be with her and Echo on her travels, she liked meeting new and nice people like him.

Listening to the river’s babbling below her, Knell shut her eyes to the world and simply allowed herself to be lost to it. The sound of water such as that was truly a soothing noise to a landbound Undine. . . . However, shortly into this little time of relaxation, she was broken from her water-induced trance when the sound of footsteps upon the stone bridge caught her ears—footfalls which were approaching her. Coming out of state, the girl brought her eyes to open again, looking out at the river below her before the noise halted, right near her. ’Knell . . . be mindful of this.’ Canaan warned, being ever cautious as usual. Blinking uncertainly, the pigtailed teenager pulled herself up to her full height and looked at the one who had come to stand very much near her, standing the same way she’d been against the handrail.

She simply looked at him, a bit surprised by how much taller he was then she, although Crane’s height had startled her a bit, this was just a bit more of a shock. “Nice night isn’t it?” he spoke to her all of a sudden, startling her into letting out a bit of a squeak. But, he turned to her and gave a grin along with his simple question. His smile was . . . nice, it was a gentle and kindly one. Seeing it by the light of his makeshift torch was enough to let Knell feel at ease, though Canaan himself did not let up.

Releasing a breath of relief, she returned his smile with one of her own before speaking, “Indeed so, it would seem that the darkness has come to bless everyone with a reprieve from the harsh heat that the day has been giving unto us.” Her voice was earnest, honest and as gentle sounding as her song before had been. Knell was happy to talk to someone who seemed so friendly—meeting nice people was something she enjoyed after all. Though she was more than ready to continue speaking with the man before her, something caught hold of Knell’s attention, she became nearly entranced by what it was she heard. . . . A voice came forth from the quiet and still night air, permeating much as her own had done before.

It was a voice Knell knew so well, a song being sung in a tongue that only few knew, only those of Undine descent. . . . “Whal irruis rurd rairdal du dha weyar, Haes dhan faesul irrui fesc huna wasa irruis haesd raiar, Ferruw dha rraiddasailr wedasr er dhairr rhuw irrui dha nef du whasa irrui farulr.” The voice was so captivating, so moving . . . ebbing and flowing as if it were the tides of the oceans itself, the voice was one of a truly divine sounding woman. And, such a moving voice could have only belonged to one woman, one dear woman. “Wedsh er dha nuul sairar hairh efuya, rairdal er dha saiffrar railr irrui du rraaf, Lad dhan sallrasd dha dsidh du irrui, Yui wairr layas fa erula whal dha llairh warsuna irrui fesc eln sunllusd irrui waidh dhaais wesndh Wedsh er dha rruw llairh rairhd if dha wedasr raica rdesr. Thairr wairr rad irruis llaesr llruw eweirr eln fsailr irrui faesa, hasa irrui wairr erweirrr farulr.”

And it was so nearby, the song came from so near, hearing it so close caused Knell’s dear little heart to skip a beat within her chest, and her aquamarine eyes to widen as her whole form when still and silent. Her eyes turned glassy as only one though went through her head, ’Echo. . . .’ It was her, that voice and that song, it could only have been Knell’s dear friend singing. The Undine Lullaby—the song Knell had taught to Echo when they’d become friends as a sign of the adoration she held for the strong Undine. She began to shake as she realized how very close Echo was to her now, and, it was in the light of a dimly lit streetlamp that Knell was able to perceive a figure. A tall and almost imposing feminine form silhouetted within the darkness, yet lit just enough for her to be known. “Echo. . . .” Knell whispered quietly.

She was beginning to feel a bit dizzy—like a very heavy weight had come off her shoulders, had she truly missed Echo as this? So much she had not even known. . . .

And although another voice came into being nearby, the voice of a male whom seemed to be imitating the sounds of the Undine Lullaby, Knell seemed to pay it no heed. An unknown figure landed before Echo suddenly, but Knell cared not. It was happiness which plagued her soul now, pure elation. Without giving it a second thought, the Undine Princess suddenly pushed herself away from the stone handrail of the bridge; away from the stranger she’d begun conversing with, and took off into a sprint, running passed him. Tears began to fall from Knell’s aquamarine eyes, resulting in shimmering white gemstones falling to the stone pavement below with barely notable ‘plinks.’ Not minding the new person who’d come before her dear friend, Knell ran right to her, still crying from the joy in seeing her.

With no warning, the pigtailed girl came to a disastrous halt, while she’d meant to stop before Echo, and embrace her, Knell managed to instead trip over her own foot right before her, resulting in her literally falling onto her friend. Yet even still, the teal-haired girl managed to wrap her arms around her friend’s form, still managing to give her the hug she wanted to. “Echo, I am so sorry!” she cried, apologizing for when they’d been separated.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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#, as written by Wake
Watching Knell race of to embrace the other. It took him little time to guess that the other girl was the companion his charge had been searching for. It was enviable to watch the amount of joy the girl had now that she had reunited with her friend. But the knight he no time to think on congratulations on their reunion, for he noticed something that made he walk forward with a start.

He really had to teach that girl to hide her heritage if she wanted to keep her it a secret.

Reaching the edge of the bridge where ground met structure. He called out too the two new comers, the slyph and what appeared to be a salamander. "I hope you'll excuse the maiden, she has been looking for her companion there for most of the day." He waved for the two men too join him on his side of the river bank. "Please, can you give them a moment? They've both had a tiring day." Looking over the two more closly he latched onto a topic to keep their focus. "Besides," he said looking to the salamander, "you look drunk," and then too the sylph, "and you look lost."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Zeph'ere remained silent as the two women made a dramatic reunion and an armored man and a salamander approached. This was truly unexpected, to follow a song of the sea in search of one's beautiful voice only to find it lead to four beings. Zeph'ere had never seen a salamander in person, he had only read about them in his princely studies, they seemed far more human than he had pictured them. While he seemed nonviolent, Zeph'ere was unsure he had any want to stop him as he left. These two women both seemed like fish out of water, they had rare hair colors and voices. Everything about them made him feel that they were not human the more he looked upon them. And this man in dark armor, Zeph'ere could not quite get a read on at all. He was like a black statue that radiated the feeling pain and coldness. Looking at him, made his feathers ruffle nervously.

Zeph'ere was unsure of what compelled him to do so, but he reached up and removed his helmet, revealing his long luxurious sunset red hair and his attractively chiseled face. His eyes caught the light of the moon and seemed as if they glowed. His featherless head was pale and human-like.

"Excuse me, but who are all of you...?" he spoke in slow graceful calmness.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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As the song ended Echo stood still, sheepishly watching her dear friend as she sprinted toward her. As her friend grew closer and closer to her, she braced herself for the impact. She had a feeling Knell would end up crashing into her.


Someone said “Who are you..?” To her in the distance, which made her twist to see who it was. When she heard him say that, she realized that someone had been attempting to sing with her. Thinking back, his voice was not bad. He had harmonized with her… But the joy of seeing Knell masked the sound to her at that moment.


Who was this person? He obviously didn’t know Knell or Echo(or rather, it seemed that way). In Echo’s mind, he posed no threat for the time being. He did not seem to want to hurt anyone. More… Whimsical and curious than anything.


As Echo turned to see and became lost in her thoughts, her friend crashed into her with a trip. The fall not only caused Knell to collide with Echo, but it also caused Echo to fall to the ground. Gravity certainly wasn’t her friend… Almost anything could cause her to fall over on land… In the water she may be as graceful as a butterfly, but on land she is as clumsy as a duck. She was constantly at war with her worst enemy, gravity.


As Echo sat there with Knell’s arms wrapped around her, she smiled to her dear friend. “I am so happy to see that you’re unharmed.” She beamed, hugging her back.


At the same time, her friend cried, “Echo, I’m so sorry!”


Sympathizing and knowing Knell expected to get a lecture, she patted the princess’s head. “It’s alright. It could have happened to me just as easily. Just be more careful.” Even though Knell was the same age as Echo and not closely related at all, Echo saw her as her younger sister… Always getting into some kind of trouble.


Happiness oozed from inside Echo… It grew and grew… Her heart felt warm as her lost family was reunited with her. However, it stung as her friend cried. The bittersweet feeling made Echo’s eyes sting. Nevertheless, she would not cry. She would not permit herself to do so.


In the distance, Echo heard a man. "I hope you'll excuse the maiden, she has been looking for her companion there for most of the day." He spoke, waving toward someone. He was motioning the person to come to him. Looking at who he was waving to, she notice it was actually two people, one of which was the man who sang with her earlier. But Echo was confused as to how this man knew so much. "Please, can you give them a moment? They've both had a tiring day." He looked toward Echo and Knell. "Besides," he said as he faced one of the two he motioned, "you look drunk," Then to the other, "and you look lost." Was he trying to cause a fight? This man did seem to pose more of a threat…


"Great first impression." Echo heard another man speak. As Echo faced him, he looked at Echo and Knell. "But believe me I get it. Losing a friend or family member for even a day can get rough." He patted the man on the back. "Trust me, if I was drunk it'd be a lot worse." Then tapped his armor. "Come see me if you ever need that suit of yours tuned up." He said walking off the bridge and back home. Was he a blacksmith?


"Excuse me, but who are all of you...?" The one who asked who Echo was earlier spoke. He had removed his helmet, exposing flamboyant sunset hair and his smooth face. Light from the moon reflected on his eyes, making them appear to glow. He was… Beautiful.


Unsure of how to respond, Echo tilted her head to the side in thought… Was it her place to say anything? “We’re…” She motioned toward herself and her companion, “Travelers.” She blushed. She didn’t know whether or not saying her name would be proper. She only knew Knell of the people there… And so many people surrounded them… Her face reddened with embarrassed, her face reddened even further.

Nervous about what else to say, Echo brushed her hair to the other side with her fingers… It was a nervous habit she’d acquired over the years…

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Tears continued to come to the little Princess’ eyes, though they were indeed ones of happiness. Echo was back, her dearest one was back with her now . . . and she was not angry. Careful, yes, she needed to be more careful, didn’t she? She never wanted to worry her friend again, she didn’t want to make Echo sad or anxious again—no, causing someone worry was a bad thing to do. Knell remained there, with her arms still wrapped around her friend’s middle, it not occurring to her that Echo might’ve wanted to get back up to her feet, even if the two of them looked ridiculous sitting there on the ground, one of them clinging onto the other as if for dear life. . . . ’Um, Knell don’t you think that you might want to move? You and Echo aren’t exactly the only two people around you know.’ Canaan interjected into his sister’s thoughts.

’I am sorry Canaan, I understand what you mean with your words, but I do not think that I could move, even if I willed myself to do so, I am simply too elated.’ she apologized sheepishly.

A, unstable, but happy breath escaped from Knell’s lips as she smiled and forced herself to pull away from her friend as she responded to the questioning of the person who’d landed before Echo moments before Knell had reunited with her. ”We’re… Travellers.”

The Undine princess smiled abashedly as her friend’s face flushed with color and she proceeded to stroke at her hair in an anxious fashion—though Echo was a strong girl at heart, she still a bit meek when it came to new people, and so many of them at once. Had all of them but Crane been lured to this place by their sweet singing? Undine were renowned for their voices, for having a profound impact upon their listeners, the gift of song given to them by their dearest Father Osael upon their birth eons ago. Knell knew not if their voices had lured the newcomers to their location, but if that was indeed the case, it was almost embarrassing to consider. The notion of it even caused the little Princess there to have her cheeks go a bit red as she gave the lot of them an abashed smile.

Sitting there next to Echo, the pigtailed girl laughed the slightest bit before she turned her head and quickly grabbed onto her dearest friend’s hand with her own, the one she’d been using to nervously play with her hair. “I apologize for the sudden and rather impolite manner in which I greeted Echo, yet I could not help myself from doing so,” she laughed a bit, sniffling while the tears from her joyous outburst began to finally dry. “She and I are indeed travelers, wandering the lands to better grasp the beauty of the world, yet we are still rather inexperienced in our dealings with much, and thanks to this, we unfortunately managed to get separated earlier this day after I suffered . . . an accident.”

She wiped at her eyes before bringing the aquamarine orbs to open again, actually getting a proper look at the people around her this time. She was . . . surprised to say the least upon seeing the person before her, he was different looking—feathers, yet humanoid. Perhaps he was one of the Sylph she’d read about some time before, the people of the air. By the standards of ordinary women . . . he would be considered an attractive one, she supposed. However, Knell was not quite sure if that were true. . . . Remembering well the case of her position and Echo, hiding their identities as Undine to everyone, sans Crane who’d quickly figured out the truth, the teal-haired girl smile again before speaking once more. “I am called Knell Blackburn, and my dearest companion here,” she paused and gestured to the abashed Echo, “Is Echo Thrussell.”

’What of the knight, Knell?’ Canaan reminded his sister of Crane who’d slipped her mind in her moment of joy.

The realization of this caused the girl to momentarily panic before she forced herself to regain some normalcy, “Ah! I had nearly forgotten to do so! However, the knight donned in black armor is also a traveling companion of mine—he aided me when my life was being threatened following the separation Echo and underwent, he is now acting as a protector and guide to myself and my dear friend.”

Knell turned her gaze up to Crane and smiled, “Sir Crane? Perhaps you would want to properly introduce yourself instead of having me do so?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles

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Sylvia looked at the guy who asked her is she was okay. "No I thought I was dancing." She thought, but she smiled and said, "I am fine, thank you." She started to walk towards the bridge, which thankfully was not far at all. The pain in her knee slowly subdued and she was able to kind of walk right.

Now the thing that pained her mind once she got to the bridge was the fact that her skirt was way to short for her likings. "Ohh gosh! There are so many people here!" She thought and blushed as she got a little closer to the knight. Her eyes ran over the others that were there. "S-Sorry to bother you all..." She whispered, hoping no one heard her, "But uhm I think there are some thieves running in the woods and we thought it would be safe for us to come here until everything was safe." She managed to say a little louder and motioned to the two guys with her, still not knowing their names. Her head was bowed slightly, but she looked up towards the knight. "A knight here must mean someone royal is in this group! And I look like this!" She thought, her face turning a deep red.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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The Sylph heir-prince shuddered lightly in night breeze, as the clouds that had rolled into the moon shifted and the moons light reflected off his stainless white feathers of his strong wings. His long silky red hair draped back over his shoulders. His attractive face seemed to catch the moon beams, lighting it up like a pale rose. With the number of people now here, especially the three women, including the young chocolate haired human woman that had joined them, Zeph'ere thought it only proper to introduce himself. The two new boys looked like common humans, but something about their air made him uneven, so he was even further put on his guard.

"I suppose it's only noble for me to introduce myself. I am Heir-Prince Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus, one day king of the Nimvus Kingdom." His wings shuddered as he stood with his helmet slung under his right arm. He bowed slowly and respectfully.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Knell blinked and looked upon the winged man as he introduced himself as a prince, although it wasn’t much so shocking to hear as much—he was rather regal in his mannerisms, and his manner of attire. More people had just come upon the group, a human looking girl and two boys, who did themselves look ordinary, yet there was something off about them. That much she could feel more so than tell. She’d more or less gone and introduced herself, Echo, and Crane to the group already, but hearing the winged one call himself a prince was a bit surprising to her, as she was a princess by technicality. Of course, that was a fact that was being hidden from the world for the sake of her own life, for whatever the reason. In a way, it was kind of surprising for her to be meeting a fellow noble. . . .

In a way, it actually made her a little excited, the only true nobility she had ever had contact with were her stepfather, mother and her sisters, as well as those men who her stepfather, Llyr, had chosen as her suitors . . . strange and prideful Undine who didn’t seem to at all value her as a person, just as a something to gain them status. . . .

This man however, Zeph’ere, seemed to be a different sort. . . . It intrigued her. ’Knell, watch yourself. . . .’ Canaan warned, to which Knell remained silent as she tilted her head to the side, looking at the Sylph curiously.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Echo felt Knell pull herself away. She saw her friend smile softly.

The Mermaid princess grabbed Echo’s hand. “I apologize for the sudden and rather impolite manner in which I greeted Echo, yet I could not help myself from doing so. She and I are indeed travelers, wandering the lands to better grasp the beauty of the world, yet we are still rather inexperienced in our dealings with much, and thanks to this, we unfortunately managed to get separated earlier this day after I suffered . . . an accident.” Knell paused to wipe the tears from her eyes. “I am called Knell Blackburn, and my dearest companion here,” Knell motioned toward Echo, “Is Echo Thrussell.” The introduction seemed to be over.


But then the princess seemed to have realized something, “Ah! I had nearly forgotten to do so! However, the knight donned in black armor is also a traveling companion of mine—he aided me when my life was being threatened following the separation Echo and underwent, he is now acting as a protector and guide to myself and my dear friend.” Knell looked up and smiled at him as she spoke. “Sir Crane? Perhaps you would want to properly introduce yourself instead of having me do so?”

In a brief bow, Crane replied "I believe you've already explained enough of me, miss Blackburn. There is little else I can say of myself at the moment." His focus seemed to watch the Sylph.


"I suppose it's only noble for me to introduce myself. I am Heir-Prince Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus, one day king of the Nimvus Kingdom." Echo noticed his wings tremble. He held his helmet as he bowed. He certainly looked noble… And he definitely acted as such, but somehow Echo did not expect him to say he was noble. She wondered how Knell felt to meet a fellow noble…

Echo looked up at Knell trying to guess at her thoughts... She didn’t know what to say or do, but she was very nervous to be around so many people… She didn’t like it. Continuing to stroke her hair, Echo noticed herself begin to tremble. She sighed at her hopeless self, praying that no one could see how truly nervous she was. She stood up before flipping her hair to the other side of her head again and continuing to brush through it with her hands.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Abilene had been listening happily to the beautiful melodies sung by the female and male from her perch in the old maple tree. Her senses were tangled up in the feeling and emotion that poured forth from the voices, and it seemed almost like a shock-wave to her emotions when they ceased their wonderful music. She listened harder for their melody, but picked up the sound of another's voice joining in - a female, who had a distinctive ring to her song.

The music continued on between the voices, until it seemed to end entirely. Abilene wasn't sure of the cause, and wished desperately for the song to continue; it had such a calming effect on her, and she felt ripped away from that calming sensation when the song ended. It left her wanting for more.

Swinging her feet up onto the branch next to her, she pushed herself up in to a walking position. Her movements throughout the branches were feline-like in nature, as she seemed to possess this almost unearthly balance. Moving around the large trunk of the tree, she climbed higher in its branches, and began her outward movement towards the sounds original location in hopes of catching it once more.

She listened harder, and found herself catching bits of a conversation between a group. Her curiosity was getting the best of her, and she searched the area ahead of her for signs of the group. Her eyes found a bridge, not too far from her location in the tree, just over the water. The group was gathered around, speaking with one another. A male from the group broke off and went his own way, and some more joined into the gathering. Abilene tried harder to hear what the conversation was about - these people seemed odd to her; different. She had never seen someone with wings before, or hair of such a bright fiery color. And the two females who seemed alike in some way were also a curiosity to her; they seemed almost as if they didn't belong. There was one female who seemed normal compared to the rest, as well as two males who she couldn't really see all two well; she assumed they were rather normal. And then there was also that large metal... person? She wasn't all too sure on what was standing with the group. She had heard what sounded like a males voice come from inside it, but the concept of armor confused her.

Leaning out more on the branch, she strained harder to hear that groups conversation. She felt the old maple give a groan, and she looked towards the tree in apology. "I just want to hear the song again..." she said to the tree, as if explaining her reasoning. Turning back to look at the group, she made another motion to try to hear better...

...and found herself no longer high up in the tree branch. Instead, she was plummeting towards the water below the branch she had been on, having seemingly taken a tumble from the branch for being overzealous on hearing the beautiful song once more.

She hit the waters surface with a medium impact, the force of it stunning her for a few moments; she immediately found water filling her nose and mouth, which was enough to break her out of that stunned stillness. Abilene felt as if the weight of the world was upon her, and she struggled underwater for a few moments, trying to push herself upward. The cold water stung against her skin, and she stuck her hands out in an attempt to find something to grab onto. A lonesome root from the maple tree was the first thing she grabbed, so she pulled herself towards the tree itself using the root as a guide. Touching mud, she scrambled up and out of the water, onto the bank where the tree was growing near. She coughed water out of her mouth as well as the bit she felt in her lungs, and gasped for clean air, feeling the sharp contrast to the temperature of the water as the chilly night air filled her lungs and numbed her skin.

Clothing clinging to her form, she tried to stand to remove herself from such a close proximity after such an event, but found herself unable to move from her spot; her legs were too shaky from the experience. Instead she tried to back herself into the form of the tree, hoping beyond all hopes to simply disappear into the bark.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Knell could only smile a bit as her dear friend stood to her feet in what seemed to be a flighty manner, she was indeed a nervous girl at the moment, it was obvious enough to the Undine Princess because dear Echo happened to be fiddling about with her hair again, something she always did when nervous. She was really happy to see her again so soon, after being separated in such a shocking manner, it was sort of hard to fathom just how much Echo had been missed, Knell didn’t really realize until seeing her again that she’d been so worried about her. And despite their reunion, the Undine girl was already back to her shy and timid ways at being so near new people; Knell understood how meek the pastel-haired woman could be around new people.

However, she herself found new people fascinating; the experience wonderful in itself~ Even with what she had dealt with that morning, when she’d met Crane, the prospect of meeting a group of new people was great, she’d been so isolated from people before, and meeting someone new was fantastic. They would have stories to share with her, about things she’d never seen or heard about. . . . That was something that she cherished completely, hearing about what wonders the world before her held made her want to see more of it every day. And, that was something she hoped she got a chance to do; although her life was threatened, Knell was okay because it gave her a new leash on life, the chance to see the world with freedom she hadn’t had before. Best of all, she even got to see it with her dearest friend Echo. On top of that even, she already had another traveling companion too.

What was not to be happy about . . . ? ‘And yet still, I have met more people whom are all interesting, one of whom is even a noble, one that seems so very different from nearly all I have encountered before. . . .’

‘Knell, don’t you think you might be getting a bit overenthusiastic about this? Even if this Sylph prince might seem different from Llyr or our sisters, you never know what to expect out of people.’

The Undine girl lowered her head a bit and a softhearted smile formed on her young face, knowing well her brother’s intentions, his warnings were meant to keep her protected, safe. He just wanted what was best for her, her safety; which is why he was anxious, nervous and unsure of having so many unfamiliar people around her right then. Even if when he overtook her body, he would not be able to protect her from so many unknown people at once. Even if the prospect of danger was evident, Knell still felt . . . secure. ‘I am aware that I should be careful around so many unknowns Canaan, but . . . I do not sense ill-intent from anyone here, and also, I have companions who will help keep me safe if something took a wrong turn.’

Canaan did not respond to Knell’s words, but the girl could still feel her brother stirring within his half of her mind, his soul not at ease yet. But really, Knell felt safe where she was, even with so many people around whom she didn’t know, it felt all right, okay. They hadn’t tried to harm her, so, she had no reason to believe they’d do so. Her identity was still a secret too, even if Crane was aware of her Undine heritage, he didn’t know she was royalty, a princess. . . .

Moving her hand off her lap, Knell placed it delicately upon the paved road below herself, and carefully pushed herself up to her feet again, proceeding to brush her skirt off, and to smooth out any wrinkles within it. It was time to cease sitting, especially when Echo had already ascended upward. A bit of a laugh came from her throat as she smiled to the group of people, “Well, I can say without a single doubt within my mind that I was not at all expecting to encounter so many new people all at once here. I only sought after Echo, but, I am very happy to make the acquaintance of everyone here~” she nearly sang, the elation in her voice evident. Lacing her fingers together, Knell set her hands at her front. In a way, the girl was honestly curious about what had led so many strangers to meet in one place at a single point in time like this. . . .

“Ah~ If I may be allowed to ask it of everyone here . . . why is it that everyone converged into one location so suddenly?” Knell asked, looking around at everyone, the curiosity sparkled in her aquamarine eyes. But, before anything could happen, the Undine girl found herself distracted by the sounds of a splash in the river below . . . and someone struggling. Blinking in surprise, Knell found her legs moving before her mind functioned and registered it in her mind. Her small hands were placed upon the handrails of the stone bridge once again, and she was looking over the side of it in uncertainty, knowing she’d heard something within the water that didn’t sound good.

The girl leaned over the side of the railing further to try to see better in the dark of the night . . . yet she managed to just about lean out too far, because Knell about found herself tipping over the side, and into the river below, a yelp coming from her lungs as it began to happen.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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#, as written by Wake
"Wait!"

Crane was already moving when it happened. He realized a second before hand that Knell was leaning to far over the railing and was already bounding over the bridge toward her when she let out the yelp. His metal boots clanged loudly against the stone as he nearly bowled over the Sylph prince in the mad dash. The knight nearly threw his torso over the edge after her as he snapped his arm out.

He caught her, barely. Managing to snatch the back of her dress Crane now dangled the undine girl from her waist by her skirt, her feet hanging just a foot above the water.

"Gravity does not seem to sit well with you, does it miss Blackburn?" He stated with a grunt. Though the knight was relieved, his voiced seemed to sound labored, like a great strain was being put on his person. Though someone could easily interpret it as the effort he was exerting to keep his charge from falling completely into the stream, the truth was that Crane felt like he had been making a herculean effort just to get across the bridge. Even now, or rather especially now, as he stood above the babbling stream the knight could feel an unpleasant sensation in the back of his mind, like something was pulling him downward. Something that he did not want to feel while he was currently nearly falling over the railing himself to keep his charge from falling in. The very thought of falling into the water with Knell sent a very small, unconscious shudder through his body.

Crane really didn't like being over running water.

"Help." He grunted over his should, already doing his best to hold on to both Knell and the railing to make sure they both didn't take a plunge and wanting to get out of this position quickly.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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“Ah~ If I may be allowed to ask it of everyone here . . . why is it that everyone converged into one location so suddenly?” Knell asked.

Before Zeph'ere could respond, the sound of something or someone fell into the nearby river, loud enough to make a splash, both figuratively and literally. Knell went to the edge of the bridge, leaning over it uneasily as if she did not know her own weight or balance. "Be car..." but before Zeph'ere could shout out his warning, Knell went right over the siding. Luckily, the knight accompanying her managed to catch, but gravity was not on his side. Whipping out his twin fans, Zeph'ere quickly blew an updraft under the dangling girl, gently keeping her from descending much further. However, as the knight began to follow Knell over the side. Zeph'ere focused himself to keep the air pushing them up just as the salamander returned in the nick of time to pull them the rest of the way up. Zeph'ere sighed in relief as he released his control of the wind and sheathed his fans. With a swoop of his wings he lifted himself into the air, flying over to the bridge, landing gracefully on the railing just after the salamander leapt over the side to the river below.

"Are you alright?" Zeph'ere asked in concern as he fluttered his wings lightly and tucked them back.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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An abashed smile surfaced on Knell’s face after she’d been saved from plunging into the water, her carelessness had certainly stirred up quite a bit of commotion, hadn’t it? Crane had tried to come to her rescue, only to be assisted by the Sylph prince and the man who’d spoken to her before she’d reunited with Echo. She had herself seated upon the stone pavement of the bridge, figuring that it might make everyone around her happier if they knew she wasn’t standing up, and risking falling over again. Her face flushed with a bit of color, honestly, she hadn’t meant for anything like to happen, she’d just been curious about what she’d heard, the sound of someone flailing about in the water. . . . If someone had been drowning or anything of the like, she wouldn’t have minded spoiling her secret in being an Undine to save that person.

Yes, it defeated the purpose of it being a secret, but keeping that much of herself hidden from the world wasn’t worth the prospect of someone else’s life. She owed a very appreciative ‘thank you’ to those who’d aided in saving her from falling into the water though. No one had to actually help her out, but three people had come to her rescue.

Inside of her mind though, Knell could feel Canaan’s annoyance and that he was a very irked boy. Her brother was not pleased with her at the moment, or the fact that she’d again been touched by anyone. He still didn’t particularly care for Crane who’d exposed her to the horrors of death earlier that day, and gotten her spattered with blood. And the fact that two near-total strangers had even come in just displeased him even more. . . . The Undine Princess was very aware of her brother’s unhappiness, but she had to do her best to not show that something was wrong, no one needed to yet know about her brother. The only person in the world who even knew about him was Echo, after all.

Nervously adjusting one of her pigtails, Knell turned her aquamarine eyes back to Zeph’ere who was perched on the handrailing above her, and nodded in response to his question. “Yes . . . I am faring well now.”

But, she turned her head back toward everyone else before speaking anymore. “I must apologize for that scare everyone, I did not mean for that to occur. . . .” Knell spoke, her voice obviously self-conscious. “As Sir Crane asked me, gravity and I are not the best of friends I fear,” she laughed, “I seem to always be having incidents such as this happening to me.” The girl laughed a bit, despite knowing well enough that just so happened to be the truth . . . considering what had happened to her that morning.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Knell continued to nervously adjust one of her pigtails as Crane had spoken to her, he wasn’t wrong . . . but just jumping the gun like that and heading back to the inn seemed sort of rude . . . didn’t it? Not to mention that the knight himself seemed to be acting off, the Undine Princess could see that his composure seemed to be shaken. She certainly wasn’t expecting that out of the man. It seemed sort of odd to her. Yet, after what just about happened, most anyone would be a little off their game, wouldn’t they? That sort of thing was probably normal enough, after all, falling was a scary thing, wasn’t it? Just dropping from one place to another. Really, that was one thing Knell did not like about land, she didn’t like the fact that one could get so easily hurt just because they maybe lost their footing or something like that. . . .

Despite Knell’s conclusions about why Crane seemed to be a bit shaken, Canaan had his own theories to that. . . . Although he wouldn’t voice them to Knell, the girl could indeed feel that her brother was musing over something, while still possessing that irked attitude of his about what had happened, and the fact that she herself had been aided by three people he didn’t particularly care for.

Letting a sigh slip from her lungs, Knell ascended to her feet, setting her hand on the guardrail for support as she did so. Best not to have another slip up so very soon. . . . She knew that Crane was probably correct in that retiring for the night was best, and that Echo herself may not have eaten yet. . . . But she didn’t exactly want to just up and leave the people who’d gathered around. “Ah, yes, Sir Crane . . . it would probably indeed be for the best that we head in for the night, it is getting to be late, after all.” The Undine spoke, a disappointed tone in her voice. “But, it would be rude to suddenly part ways with those who have gone out of their way to assist another person they barely know.” She added on at the last moment, an uncertain edge to her voice. “So, perhaps Sir Zeph’ere and the other man who helped us would like to come along?”

Canaan again stirred inside her mind, ’Knell, what are you doing?! You don’t need anymore strangers around you, that’s only asking for trouble!’ he seethed, unhappy.

‘I am curious to know more about them Canaan, what is the point in living if you isolate your heart and mind from the rest of the world an its people . . . ? These folk cannot be bad, they helped me when they did not have to after all. . . .’

‘Knell, you are . . . too naïve.’

Choosing not to respond to her brother’s words, a smile etched its way over the Undine’s face as she turned and looked at the Sylph who still sat perched on the handrail nearby her, and gave the prince a polite bow, remembering her manners as a daughter of Undine nobility. “Would you like to join us, I believe I owe you and the other man who helped me out more than just a verbal show of gratitude; perhaps I can pay for dinner?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Sylvia stayed silent, she didn't know what to do. "I can either talk and possibly die...or stay quiet and possibly not die." She thought as she watched the others chat and move about. she looked down at her hands a fiddled with them as she listened. She thought it over and realized she needed to get home, the night was getting colder and she shivered. She looked weak next to them, like she didn't belong. "I-I think I should go, I am so sorry to be of bother." She whispered, hoping that they would hear her. If she had to speak any louder her voice might crack. The whole time talking she looked down at her hands a feet.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Echo turned her attention away from the group of people and her friend, as she heard a faint voice from behind her… The voice seemed somewhat close, yet not close enough for the girl to understand what was being said. Was someone spying on the group?

Just as she thought that the group might be in trouble, gravity took hold of yet another victim. The descent was much too fast for Echo to see who it might be. However, the person had been the one talking away from the group… For a brief moment, Echo wondered whether to see if the girl was okay and interrogate her or to see if someone else had been with her. If she was talking, that could mean more company... That could mean trouble.

Knowing that Knell was there and many people beside her, Echo figured they would at least check to see if the woman was okay. So, Echo checked the branches around the one where the woman fell. The young undine was baffled to see no one there… No one seemed to be… Still expecting someone to be around, Echo looked in the bushes around the tree. Still nothing. Echo hadn’t even found a listening device. The woman seemed to have been talking to herself.

Turning, Echo saw the drenched woman in the lake. Echo walked over to her, but the woman simply backed away into her tree again. She seemed very embarrassed.

Suspicion continued to creep over Echo. After all, even if Echo and Knell had left the ocean far behind them, assassins could still be hunting for her on land. If they had hired people of the land or air to do their bidding, Echo and Knell were at a huge disadvantage. It wasn’t only that they didn’t know their surroundings, but they weren’t used to the huge effects that gravity had on land.

“Well, I can say without a single doubt within my mind that I was not at all expecting to encounter so many new people all at once here. I only sought after Echo, but, I am very happy to make the acquaintance of everyone here~” Knell said with whimsy. “Ah~ If I may be allowed to ask it of everyone here . . . why is it that everyone converged into one location so suddenly?” As Echo looked at her speaking friend, she noticed a slight wobble before… She began to tumble!

Echo reached toward her, but she also needed to take a few step. Swiftly, she did so, but she was not going to make it! She was too slow on land… In the sea, she could be one of the swiftest, but on land she was probably the slowest. She wasn’t going to be able to save her friend… Their secret would be out and soon the assassins would be here.

In a flash, a big suit of armor reached for Knell and the girl was safe. Someone in such a huge hunk of armor could move so much faster than Echo on land… Even in her light cloth. At least Knell was safe. Echo was extremely grateful that Sir Crane was there to save her from disaster.

"Gravity does not seem to sit well with you, does it miss Blackburn?" The knight said. His voice seemed a little… Tense. Gravity does not sit well with many of us. Echo thought as she turned to the soaked girl and then to herself.

"Help." He pleaded.


Echo rushed over and began to pull on them. Still not understanding how gravity worked, Echo was unsure as to how to keep them from falling into the depths of the water.

"Fantastic." Spoke a man. He smiled as he waltzed up to the bridge and laughed. He seemed a little condescending… "Just hold onto her big guy," He pulled on the knight by his shoulder. Echo, now unsure of what to do, helped to secure Knell on the other side.

"Come on, I can't do all of it alone." Echo was there, but she sure wasn’t much help.

"There you go, now if you'll excuse me." He went over to the drenched girl to check on her.


Echo hadn’t noticed, but Zeph’ere had been checking on Knell too. Echo’s heart bled as she felt completely useless. She was ready to fade into the background… She couldn’t save knell now. She would never be capable of such a thing. What made her think she would even hope to help her out? Why, Echo was only weighing her down. If it weren’t for Knell waiting on Echo, she might be a few towns over by now. Echo couldn’t save her from falling off a cliff and she couldn’t save her from falling off a bridge. There was no reason for her to be there… Echo was such a useless person.

Knell blushed as the two men had saved her from falling into the stream of water below. Echo’s heart thrashed within her. If those two hadn’t been there… Echo would have been useless to save her dear friend. Thank goodness for them… Thank goodness for Knell. She was safe.


“Yes . . . I am faring well now.” Knell responded to Zeph’ere and Echo noticed his presence. “I must apologize for that scare everyone, I did not mean for that to occur. . . .” Nervousness filler her voice. “As Sir Crane asked me, gravity and I are not the best of friends I fear, I seem to always be having incidents such as this happening to me.” Nervous laughs escaped her dear friend.

"Perhaps we should retire for night then, Miss Blackburn. Before you have anymore accidents. I believe your friend hasn't had dinner either." He spoke ever so calm and considerately… But Echo wouldn’t be joining them for dinner. She certainly wasn’t hungry. She bet that Knell was angry with her… After all, her dear friend did absolutely nothing to help her. She couldn’t. She was too weak. Echo always leaned on Knell, but she felt as though Knell could never depend on her for anything. Why was Echo even there?

“Ah, yes, Sir Crane . . . it would probably indeed be for the best that we head in for the night, it is getting to be late, after all.” Disappointment echoed from Knell as she responded “But, it would be rude to suddenly part ways with those who have gone out of their way to assist another person they barely know. So, perhaps Sir Zeph’ere and the other man who helped us would like to come along?” Uncertainty shook her voice toward the end.

“Would you like to join us, I believe I owe you and the other man who helped me out more than just a verbal show of gratitude; perhaps I can pay for dinner?” Echo didn’t lift a finger to stop her dear friend. She was the suspicious type, but she was too busy wallowing in guilt to think of how bad it might be to have strangers at the table… Especially after they had saved her best friend.

Echo did her best to slip away from the crowd. Knell would surely be better off without Echo weighing her down. If it came to Knell’s life or continuing a friendship with her, Echo would have to choose Knells life… And twice in one day Echo had been in capable of helping her dearest and only friend. Echo was better off friendless if she couldn’t help them out. Knell was better off without a friend who could only sit in the sidelines. It tore Echo apart… She deeply wanted to thank the two for saving her friend, but she couldn’t. Doing so would draw unwanted attention to the undine girl. After all, she was trying to run away. She could come back some other time, after she had trained more… Then maybe she could help her friend. Maybe she wouldn’t be such a dead weight or a third wheel.


Desperately, Echo wanted to jump into the water… She wanted to hide in it. However, the water wasn’t near deep enough… Echo wanted to drown in it, but surely an undine couldn’t drown. Such was unheard of… How silly it was to think that. If only she could backtrack to the sea. Then she could be at home again… A lonely place, certainly not the same home Echo and Knell originated from… But under the water at least…

The emotionally distraught undine child backed her way off of the bridge. She was ready to free Knell from her weight, even if that meant she had to travel in the night. Echo wouldn’t say goodbye, for she knew Knell would try to stop her. Hopefully, she wouldn’t notice the one she called her friend for so long running away. She’d stop her for sure.

Echo knew running away would make her dear friend hate her and she would never trust Echo again if they were to meet… It would break her friend’s heart… Echo wished she didn’t have to, but at least Knell would be more capable of survival. One less person for Knell to worry about…

It was a flawed plan… But there could never be a perfect plan.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Tara Hassan Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Remmy sort of avoided the spotlight. While he was very much an artist, mastermind, and performer in the sense, he did prefer some animosity.

Thats when one of them asked a question. "Well that's sort of why we stopped. We were wondering why you all had converged here, and we ended up converging here as well. I was especially curious because this area is known for its Bandit problems. Also, don't forget what else could lurks these woods....". The Funny thing is, he WAS one of the things that is in these woods. Werewolf and all, but that was personal, and he planned to keep the fact he and his brother are werewolves secret for now, locking these thoughts within the deepest depths of his mind. Just in case.

He then noted "So, why is everyone gathering here? Or is this some sort of weird twist of fate?".

And this is most likely the part where Fate is face palming. Anyways, that's when he also noted "Maybe it was that singing we heard before. Singing has a tendency to lure people in....."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Having heard it asked enough times, Zeph'ere wanted to explain himself. "I was just following that one's voice." He raise his hand along with his wing and point at Echo. He tucked his white wing back in and continued. "I heard her voice near the mouth of the river. I am traveling the world on my Rums'nido, my kind's rite of passage. I heard her voice coming from the bridge but then carried closer to town. It was a beautiful tune, I've never heard anything like it." The heir-prince knew the dangers of this world, but he had yet to cross anything he wasn't able to stop on his own. But if it comforted the young woman with a voice as pure as the sea, it would better to go inside. "I've just arrived here, I can afford lodging so I will be happy to reimburse you for my stay." Zeph'ere smiled with the sincere charm becoming of a future king.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Knell could not help the abashed expression that formed over her face at hearing that so many strangers had possibly gathered to the bridge because of the singing she’d begun and Echo had taken to as well beforehand. Song was a gift from the great Father Osael, a present to his Undine children. Even when it was not being used to invoke the many blessings of water, it still carried to it an edge that appealed to people, and caught their souls . . . even if such a thing was not intended. All she had been wanting to do was to sing, to remember the lullaby sung to her by her missing mother. ‘It seems that Echo and I drew everyone in.’ she laughed just a bit at the thought, face flushing just a bit. ‘Undine are suppose to be renowned for their voices, are they not?’

‘Of course, Undine are known for that throughout the world, among other things, Knell. . . .’ Canaan responded as his sister drew a hand up to the side of her face. ‘Are you really getting embarrassed now?’

‘I-I cannot help it. I did not mean for my singing to spawn this.’ she sighed, ‘My song drew people together and interrupted their actions because it grasped hold of them, and inhibited their thoughts.’

“I must apologize to everyone,” the Undine started, drawing her hand back down to her other, intertwining her fingers together at her front. “Even if you are not upset by the fact that you were drawn here by the song Echo and I sang, I still believe I owe you all an apology. . . .” Even if there was no need for her to say sorry to anyone, Knell could not help but feeling some level of guilt for what her song had done. Shaking her head, Knell looked back at everyone around her, “Regardless of whether or not everyone is capable of paying their own ways, I would still prefer to at least pay for a late meal for everyone that the song drew together.”

Setting a hand to her mouth, Knell shouted, “Echo!! Come now, we are headed to the Inn to eat, you need to be properly introduced to Sir Crane as well since you and I are to be traveling with him consistently soon!” She had no idea that her friend was turning to flee away from her. All she knew for sure was that the distance between herself and the other Undine had widened, thinking it was only because of the shyness felt by the pastel-haired girl. The guilt within Echo’s heart was an unknown stigma to Knell . . . she assumed only the obvious of her dear one. Although Knell was otherwise oblivious to what remorse lay within Echo, there existed someone else who was not quite so assuming.

Within his half of her mind, the Undine Princess could feel her brother stirring regarding the action taken by Echo then. He knew what she was doing, what it was she was up to now . . . that her gaining distance was not because she was timid toward all of the new people around. As Echo continued to slip further away into the dark night, a look of confusion passed over Knell’s young face, sorrow melded into it. She didn’t understand why. Why Echo was still . . . going. ‘Ca-Canaan? Why has Echo not stopped yet? Even if she were nervous around strangers, she would have ceased moving by now.’

Tears began to form within Knell’s eyes, but she blinked them away. “Ec-Echo . . . ?” she murmured out, taking just a step forward, a hand drawn up to her chest in uncertainty.

Within her mind, Canaan’s presence began to strengthen. And Knell herself felt as if she were growing weak; falling asleep abruptly. The suddenness of the feeling hit her, and made her stumble where she stood, looking faint in the face. She knew this feeling, like a hand gently clasping around her soul, drawing it away from the world and into a soothing hold, an embrace like that of a mother’s. The connection she felt to reality felt as if it were fading away, slowly, slowly. Her senses began to grow weaker, until they were no more, and only tiredness overtook her. ‘Canaan . . . please be kind to those who aided me. . . .’ That was the last thing she thought before slipping into the darkness of slumber. The Undine’s body stilled as this transition took place, her face vacant, without an expression; her eyes utterly listless.

As it ended, there was a notable distinction that overtook Knell’s body, as her head turned upward, the appearance that had taken hold of it was quite different than before, the innocence, the kindness and pleasant glint within her aquamarine eyes had vanished and were replaced by something that seemed to be steeled . . . that was suspicious. Hands clenched into fists as her sides, her expression cold, and knowing.

Echo Thrussell!!” The voice that came from Knell’s throat carried with it a tone opposite of before, there was no hint of politeness in it as before, no kindness, no gentle edge. “Don’t you dare think I don’t know what you are doing!” There was a confidence within this voice that was not within it normally, and on top of that; her voice seemed to belong to another person entirely, from the tone it carried to even how it sounded, and carried through the air. As Knell’s voice was reminiscent of the placid sea, this one that came from her could be thought of as similar to a raging storm. “I know that you are perfectly aware of what I’m talking about, Echo! Do you really think that running away from her is going to absolve anything at all?! Will it really do anything other than make her scared, and sad from the confusion of why you left without a damn word?!” The Undine Princess shouted; voice loud, angry.

“You know perfectly well what it is I am capable of! I’m not scared to do what I have to do in order to keep her happy, Echo! And, I’ll do whatever the Hell I have to in order to make sure that you don’t make her cry! Get back here now!!” Canaan screamed at Echo, forcing Knell’s voice out of her mouth with as much power as he could manage. He wasn’t lying when he’d said he would do whatever he had to in order to keep Knell from crying, even in front of these strangers he did not trust or care for. He would do anything to keep his sister smiling, and happy. Even if it meant exposing her as an Undine to more people than just the knight; he would invoke the water below and force Echo into her Undine form before letting her run away from Knell by land; he’d leave her ‘beached’ where she was before she could get away.

No matter how painful the change was for an Undine, Canaan was not afraid to induce it upon the person Knell held as one of her dearest as long as it meant keeping her around, to keep Knell smiling. Echo knew about Canaan, how different he was from Knell, what he would do, could do. . . . And, if she didn’t come back of her own volition, she would come back by force.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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"I was just following that one's voice." The winged one pointed toward Echo, but she would never have known. She didn’t think much of her voice. It may have been gorgeous, but in her mind… She was nothing special. Echo assumed Zeph’ere had been speaking of Knell. He raise "I heard her voice near the mouth of the river. I am traveling the world on my Rums'nido, my kind's rite of passage. I heard her voice coming from the bridge but then carried closer to town. It was a beautiful tune, I've never heard anything like it. I've just arrived here, I can afford lodging so I will be happy to reimburse you for my stay." He sounded pleasant from behind the tall undine.


“I must apologize to everyone,” Echo could hear her friend speak from behind her. She sounded rather… Nervous. “Even if you are not upset by the fact that you were drawn here by the song Echo and I sang, I still believe I owe you all an apology. . . Regardless of whether or not everyone is capable of paying their own ways, I would still prefer to at least pay for a late meal for everyone that the song drew together.” Echo felt her heart sink with every word the princess spoke. She fought back the tears welding in her eyes. She would not cry.

“Echo!! Come now, we are headed to the Inn to eat, you need to be properly introduced to Sir Crane as well since you and I are to be traveling with him consistently soon!” Echo heard her dear friend call to her. She gripped the cloth over her heart and braced herself. She felt the confusion wash over her friend…




“Ec-Echo . . . ?” Knell cried out…


Echo stoped.

MOVE![/] She urged herself… [i]Run! She begged herself. She did not move. Her heart bled within her chest. Water continued to build up in the young one’s eyes… I will not cry! It was an order. She begged herself not to cry… Her eyes reddened with the urge to let her tears fall.



Echo Thrussell!” It was Canaan… His voice was hard and cold… There wasn’t a hint of a waver in it. His voice was a rock. Echo collapsed to her knees. She sniffled, but she refused to cry. “Don’t you dare think I don’t know what you are doing!” His voice stayed strong and accusing… Sometimes Echo wondered if Canaan knew her better than Knell did… He believed less of the goodness in everyone than Knell seemed to. “I know that you are perfectly aware of what I’m talking about, Echo! Do you really think that running away from her is going to absolve anything at all?! Will it really do anything other than make her scared, and sad from the confusion of why you left without a damn word?!” His voice raged like a hurricane, forcing winds knocking Echo futher down than she had ever felt…Canaan was right… All Echo would do by leaving is cause more problems… If Echo stayed, she’d weigh her friend down… If she left, she would weigh her down. The options were plain and simple. Weigh Knell down or weigh Knell down… Echo was a dead weight no matter what she did…

Echo’s hands gripped the clot harder… Her pale skin seemed almost transparent, showing the bones of her knuckles under it.


“You know perfectly well what it is I am capable of! I’m not scared to do what I have to do in order to keep her happy, Echo! And, I’ll do whatever the Hell I have to in order to make sure that you don’t make her cry! Get back here now!!” Echo was submissive. She forced herself to stand and she drug herself to his side… Her back was curved. She slouched unconsciously as she wished to disappear.

Please don’t speak of Knell as her… Someone will find out… Echo begged inside… Echo was ready to give up. She was ready to vanish forever… To cease her existence. There wasn’t a reason for her to be around. She knew she was nothing… That she was the original betrayer of Knell… There was no reason Knell would want such a horrid and evil person to stay by her side. She could never make up for that mistake. She could never mean anything to anyone… But somehow she meant something to the princess.

Knell held Echo dear to her heart… Echo held Knell dear to hers. But there was a reason their friendship was forbidden. People like Echo should never exist… Echo had no place in the world… The gloom air of doom hung in the air around Echo. She felt as though everyone could see her tar heart bleeding from a mile away… The darkness in her was prominent… Even if Echo would not allow herself to shed any tears… She knew her pain was apparent… Why am I here? She questioned herself. She was ready to bolt away, to leave the world far behind…

All Echo could do was prove how much of a fool she was… No matter what she did now, she would forever lose the trust of her friend… Of course, Knell had every right to hate Echo and to never trust her… This makes two betrayals from Echo and none from Knell…


Echo felt like gum on someone’s shoe… Icky, gooey stuff that never lets go, but aggravates everyone. Although that is horrid, Echo didn’t know how to change… Although she trained to be strong, she was still as weak as a little guppy. Her heart wanted to help Knell, but her mind didn’t know how… No matter what, both of them would be hurt if Echo didn’t get stronger soon… Faster too. Under the sea, she may be fast and strong, but even with the pressure of the sea weighing against her, she was weak and slow on land. The pressure of the water felt like nothing… She could float through the sea and never know anything else… With that, she would be content. On land, Echo didn’t understand how to coordinate her body and she became flimsy and slow… Gravity pushed her to the ground and there was nothing Echo could do to stop it. It did the same to Knell. The last thing Knell needed was for another clumsy undine to prance around and ruin things for her… But she also didn’t need to lose her friend. Some friend Echo was…

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Osael de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Itan Soldin Character Portrait: Remmy Jakova Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Abilene Sylva Caen Character Portrait: Sylvia Wiles Character Portrait: Zeph'ere la Skiya ver Nimvus

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Embarrassment was the first emotion to write itself onto Abilene's face; that was followed almost as quickly by a feeling of needing to be withdrawn from the situation. Torn between staying by the tree and running off, as best as she might have been able to in a soaking wet dress, the pale-haired girl couldn't come to a decision fast enough on whether to leave or stay.

Her commotion seemed to cause an array of trouble all its own, and the Dryad wished once more she could simply melt away. 'Maybe they didn't notice...' she thought, feeling even more embarrassment color her cheeks at the realization that maybe she shouldn't have been quite so nosy.

Her mind told her to leave, since most likely no one had noticed her - of course, she was lying to herself. But before she could make her getaway, a male who had helped right the commotion on the bridge began to make his way towards her.

She backed up instinctively towards the tree trunk, wanting more than anything to climb right back up into the branches and disappear from sight. The old maple gave a sort of groan, almost as if had read her very thoughts and was trying to encourage her not to go through with them. Finding her legs unable to listen to her brain, she once again focused her attention on the male who approached. Who was he? What was he planning on doing? She had never seen someone quite like him before. He was so very, very... tall. Abilene had to crane her neck to see him as he approached her.




What was it her mother and father had told her when she was younger, she thought. Something about the Dryad people ranging in height, and she had just happened to get the short end of the stick. She had given her father a rather bland expression at his joke - he had thought it was rather humorous and laughed about it for quite a few minutes. Once he finished laughing, he continued on to explain himself. "The dryads can be tall or short, depending on the trees they inhabit and protect. You come from a mother who protected the apple trees, and a father who just happens to be human." He had ruffled her hair slightly at that point, before pulling her into his lap as her mother continued his story for him.

"Your aunties protect trees that range in height, and many of them are taller, depending on the tree. But there are other creatures of this world who vary in height as well. Some may be smaller than you, and some may be much taller. But this doesn't make them any less or more than you, do you understand?" She had nodded towards her mother, burying her head in her fathers neck. He smiled, and her mother came to sit in front of her husband and daughter. "You must promise me you will not judge them, until they have given you fair evidence for you to do so." Abilene had looked upon her mothers loving face, and nodded once more.

Her father smiled; "Thats my girl..."





Abilene's memory drifted away from her, as she brought herself back to the situation at hand. The male was just right in front of her, and she found herself drawing in a deep breath, and pulling herself away from the tree to stand up straight. Fully expecting whatever it was that he would say to her... she didn't find herself expecting him to wrap a warm cloak around her shoulders. Grasping at it as he closed it around her front, she gazed up at him in mild surprise.

"You alright miss?" he had began, and she nodded slightly. "Not exactly the best idea to take a dip in a freezing river in the middle of the night." He seemed to almost have a slight smile about the way he said his last sentence, and she found herself looking around her surroundings, almost forgetting where she was.

Looking back up at him, she went to explain herself, before closing her mouth tightly, biting back the words before they came. 'I only just fell in... well, because I was snooping...' she thought, once again feeling embarrassment heat her cheeks. She couldn't bring herself to say it, so she paused before she gave him an answer.

"Thank you for your kindness. I... seemed to have lost my balance." The smile she offered him was timid, as if she were testing the waters. He seemed genuinely worried about her well-being, and it was then that she realized exactly what he had given her.

Feeling as if it were too much for him to have given her his cloak, she lightly protested. "I very much appreciate your kindness, but I cannot possibly take this from you and soak it through because of my mistake..." Her voice trailed off, and she felt at a loss on what to do. She had to admit; the cloak was warm and had a sort of comforting appeal to it. And he was right... it was cold out.

Her ears picked up someone mentioning food, and a place to stay, and she immediately pictured the Inn near her home. 'Maybe I could go there to dry off. If father saw me soaked through...' She let her thoughts trail off, and simply pulled the cloak around her shoulders slightly more, trying to ebb off the bite of the cold which was beginning to seep through her.