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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 · 321 views · located in Gaea Minor

a character in “Drifting to the Edge of Nowhere”, as played by Wake

Description

Crane Ichabod
Image

Theme: Sad Romance by Thao Nguyen Xanh
Role: Male Three ~ ???
Gender: Male
Nickname(s): The Execution Rider, Knight of Solitude
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. 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.

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. Killing and theft he can pass of as something of either a personal matter. Cruelty, however, 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. Sometimes he even seems more active at night

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.
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.
Pteronophobia- Fear of being tickled by feathers


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.

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 specializes in and say no more.

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.

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 and was known to hunt down bandit camps in the wilds. He became a bit of a ghost story among outlaws, and tales would be spread about a lone knight that strode into their camps at night and try to take their heads.

(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: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
Dusk.

The time when light and dark trade places. Where beams of the bright sun cease to shine through the trees, exchanged for letting the glow of moonlight of the late evening sky filter through the leaves. When the giddy daylight hours end, replaced by the soothing tranquility of the nights cold winds.

And the eerie silence that sit on the edges of the dark.

Do many wonder what happens of that exchange of hats between the day and the night? Do they know of what changes happen with the forest at the edges of their homes, or what glides across the shadows under the moonlight, away from the prying eyes of the men and women who turned their backs on the life among the forest glades? There were whispers in the dark, of secrets, young and old, that few knew of. There were hidden beauties between the great oak trunks and dark beast skulking within the grass. There were songs of ice and snow written and told on every snow flake, and poetry scribed on every fallen leaf. The were alluring voices, calling for some to follow them into the dark, and stay with them... forever. Among them all, such dark brought with it it's greats treasure. One few knew off, and few truly accepted.

Memories, of times long ago. Times of dread and sorrow. The comfort of tears and solace of their gift in the comforting solitude of shadow.

He knew of this, all of this. The comfort of walking in such cold places, and the price one must sometimes pay to be in this dark. Alone with ones thoughts, such memories were all he had left. Empty. Hollow. He existed merely to wander now. To drift through this land of solitude, till he found what he had lost so long ago.

Until one cold night he heard a voice on the wind, familiar as it was cold. "Go to South, and to the East." It said. "There, at the edges of the forest where the lands of man meet the wilds, you shall find something of great importance. But be warned, as like the moth, you too can be burned by the allure of it's candle like glow."

_________

Where he walked, others would move to clear away from his path. A strange sight he was to many in this small town. What would a knight be doing so far down too the south, some would ask. Though they had plenty reason to clear from his path, such a heavily armed man did not seem like someone you'd want to impede, but non more then the feel of the unknown about him drove them away.

He was foreign, unknown, a stranger. He was someone that did not belong, and their for was neither welcome nor wanted, and his foreign persona made approaching him a task non wanted to endeavor. So he was avoided. He, and the horse following him, traveled through the town underrated by the thick throngs of the crowd. His purpose here a mystery, even to himself. Simply he walked, and let the people part before him as he did so.

Then a crash and a shriek made him, like many other, pause to locate it's source. A girl, hair oddly colored and, if her appearance was anything to go by, obviously not a local herself. Curiosity struck him as he stood there observing the girl. Something was... different about her. Aw, he saw it now, though he held his tongue about it. He thought to himself, pondering something from behind his metal plate mask, before he came to a decision.

He let go of the horses reigns, leaving the creature behind temporary. Again, the crowd parted before him as he strode silently forward. He stooped low next to the girl when he reached her. A hand out stretched, he spoke in a voice that sounded young for one of his size.

"Do you need help, miss?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by xKyrie
Shaking the bag of coins in one of his hands, Clavis started whistling. Still wearing his flamboyant costume and uniquely designed hat, he trudged his way along the crowd. He had just been in the center plaza, playing different songs. He was doing his usual routine of performing for the crowd when some people started tossing him coins and giving him money for his performance. It wasn't really his intention to ask for money in exchange for his music but if they had been offering to give him some, who was he to refuse?

The violet-haired man stared appreciatively at the sky above. The sun had already been setting and he can't be more than happier. Whistling a happy tune, he looked around him and smiled at the people passing by. He even dared to mock salute at some of them. He was grinning non-stop, genuinely happy with the nightfall while walking through the town. Seeing a corner before him, he tightened his hold on the string of the makeshift bag, where he kept his lute and other necessary things, still keeping on his lively gait, before turning around.

The sky was turning darker and as he looked around, he quietly studied his environment, stopping his whistling. He knew that far on the western side of the town there was a wide dense forest. He had heard different versions of stories from the young maidens that he talked beforehand. They told him that no one dares to enter it past suppertime. They had said that those who enter it are not seen coming back. Those people are never to be seen again. For what reason they actually don't know. Seeing their expressions, he was quite sure that the lovely young maidens were trying to intimidate him. Since he actually had have some invitations for a place to stay for the night and mostly declined them all. He charmingly told them that he's interested in seeing the said enigmatic and terrifying forest. Despite their warnings and mouthwatering options for him, he just smiled and winked goodbye. He had been unrelenting on his decision and because of that they only gave him a teary hug and loads of supplies before he left.

Staring at the sky one more time, he smiled again. His mind was already conjuring up new tunes for some songs that he will play on the forest that night. No one knew it, but he never sleeps during nightfall. He liked the ambiance of the evening. Despite his cheerful nature, there was something during the darkened skies that amazes him more than the clear bright mornings. If he would choose between the night and day, he will undoubtedly choose the former.

He was still in his own happy bliss when a sudden ruckus took his attention. In his peripheral vision, he saw a girl with teal-colored hair tripping over her own two feet. He thought, judging the girl's demeanor, that she would start crying inadvertently later on. He was surprised when she was then approached later on by tall armor wearing man. Obviously a knight, he stretched out an arm, aiming to help her stand up. Not long after though, another blue-haired girl who was taller than the one who tripped, approached them. Not without tumbling on the ground herself, she then proceeded to the other girl and promptly scolded her.

He gazed thoughtfully at the fallen girl, there was something interesting about her. With his own curious nature overcoming his drive to make way into the forest, he decided to approach them. He first stopped by on one corner and lightly set down the tightly wrapped bundle and the pack where his lute was. Untying the knot, he took out the lute and promptly placed his pack and the bundle on his back. Plucking the strings of the lute, he then proceeded to play out on one of lively music that he knew. Entertainer, it is one of his masterpieces. Surely a song like this will be the perfect song to play in this scenario. He shut his eyes off for a moment as if trying to feel the song and opened them looking directly at the first girl who tripped and caused a commotion. Smiling encouragingly, he gestured to the outstretched hand of the knight and continued playing.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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She found herself swallowed up by an old covering of some sort, an assortment of scraps having tumbled to the ground with her as she had reach out in some effort to keep her body from giving way to gravity’s evil clutches. A couple of weeks on land, and with legs, and she still was not at all used to the whole process of walking. . . . It seemed almost barbaric to her, people have to move themselves forward with such an amount of effort—being bound to one surface without the assistance of stairs or a ladder. In the water, one could just move their tail, and they could go up or down, or anyway they so chose, moving was so much easier in the oceans. . . . Having to get around on legs, well, that was a chore, and it took such an amount of time and energy that it was very easy to become drained and exhausted.

Her body wasn’t made for such wear! After all, she was a princess—working to build up stamina and energy was not exactly something that she had been made to do, or been made to work on.

Gravity was such a burden. And a cruel thing too, how it seemed to relish causing her embarrassment and pain. . . . Of course, she would just have to go and be separated from Echo, and then manage to tumble over herself right after getting out of the paths of everyone whom was finishing their daily rounds and chores. . . . And to top it all off, she would also cause a plethora of things to come falling down with her. As if her situation weren’t bad enough, Fate seemed to love just toying about with her, didn’t it? First, assassins try to kill her before her sixteenth birthday, she kept getting lost, and now she was just falling left and right. Why oh why, could she not just be given a brief reprieve?

’Would you stop trying to blame things that don’t exist for all the bad stuff that keeps happening to you?’ Canaan started up as Knell herself began to move herself up, propping her upper half upon her forearms in order to get her face off the cold, stone pavement, an involuntary groan slipping from the girl’s lips as she did so.

’Oh hush up would you? You’re not the one who keeps falling over her own two feet, getting herself lost, and who almost got slain by unknown people.’ the girl retorted, hearing her brother laugh in response.

Knell simply sighed, choosing not to respond to him as he kept himself quiet again, thinking of who knew what in his half of her head. She didn’t really enjoy that—the fact that she and her brother shared her body, that he always knew what she was thinking, but she could never know what he was thinking. . . . Now, that was just not fair. Canaan was free to taunt and tease her all he wanted, but she couldn’t ever get any dirt on him. Not that it really mattered anyway, the boy often was never in control of her body, and the only times that happened, she herself went off into a deep, dreamless sleep from which she couldn’t ever remember anything he had done under her name. But it wasn’t as if her brother were a bad person, no, he was just a mere jokester, as he had been their whole life.

With but a quiet sigh, Knell moved one of her arms back, clutched onto the worn and old covering which still lay atop her legs, and she threw it back, and off her. Even if there was no one to blame but herself for this irksome clumsiness, Knell still found herself irritated by it all. It happened too much, and the fact that it was still happening was enough to really get at her better senses. . . . . sure, even if Echo herself took a few tumbles, the girl was so graceful looking, her movements so fluid, so lithe. Knell however; her movements were nothing short of grating, awkward and clunky. Her human legs did nothing for her—she was so very short compared to the majority of people, and Echo, Echo was so tall, she was gorgeous, standing elevated and strong.

It took a lot for Knell to feign a veil of strength herself, to appear as if she were haughty. She was raised with pride, to be proud of her heritage, her bloodline, and even if she did feel as if her mermaid lineage were superior to that of humans and all land dwellers . . . her as a person was not so much. Compared to those around her, and to Echo, Knell felt as if she were nothing special, like she did not belong. And it was that façade of hers that kept Echo from knowing—Knell didn’t want her friend to worry more than she already did. As a clueless, curious and accident-prone princess in hiding, there was enough her friend had to be concerned with.

’C’mon and get to your feet now Knell, even if walking is a chore for you, you still need to get up and to find Echo before it gets too late—you two should get back to the Inn . . . and to the Mercenary before dark.’ Canaan’s voice at the mentioning of the hired help Knell had sought out the previous day was undeniably hesitant.

’The Mercenary? Oh, I had forgotten of him.’ Knell thought, a light look of surprise happening across her face, tinted orange by the setting sun. The day before . . . Knell had taken it upon herself to hire an escort for herself and Echo, a rather obscure fellow with a reputation, one of strength, and success in his duties. From all Knell had heard, he seemed fit to be one whom would guard and protect the life of two mermaids, even if one was a princess by birth. And so, even with her brother not entirely for it, and without informing Echo until the deed was carried out, Knell had gone and paid the man upfront, a rather large sum of money by any standards for his protection, and to keep him from inquiring more information about her situation.

Knell had simply told the man that she and her friend required an escort who could provide protection as they travelled. . . .

Nothing more, nothing less. And it seemed to have been enough. However, as soon as the lot of them had arrived into town, Knell had set off on her own, Echo in tow, to explore. Even if she felt that the life of land dwellers was slightly barbaric compared to that of Merfolk, the happenings of simple day-to-day life interested Knell, she had never been allowed to see it in her own kingdom. In that time though, the teal-haired girl had managed to go and get sidetracked while her dear friend had continued onward without her, causing their separation.

’Yes . . . I should be on my way to track Echo down, and to return to him.’ she thought, turning her head to the side slightly, as she remained on the ground. Those befittingly aqua colored eyes of her happened out to the side, to look at those who stared at the sight that was her, the girl’s face flushed a light rouge when she realized how much of a crowd had gathered to stare at her. And, just as Knell was about to get herself to her feet in her embarrassment, she stopped moving as she noted the reactions in the crowd, stunned expressions, and looks of fear—them parting to the sides. Loud footsteps, the clanking of metal accompanying that. . . . They were heavy footfalls, intimidating, and as the crowd thinned from his pathway, Knell was able to finally see what was stunning the humans so, and boy, was it ever a sight she’d not go and soon forget.

A rather looming figure approached, completely held in a dark suit of armor, he carried an air to him, one that bespoke of some sort of . . . uncertainty, a form that struck a feeling of anxiety into the heart. Seeing this . . . blackened knight approach her Knell’s suddenly rather small form tensed up, muscles tight as if ready to spring up, and flee. Though he was silent, Knell could feel the vestiges of control in her body being surrendered to Canaan as he were ready to usurp it from her and to get them both away. He was frightening—and why was he coming for her? When he stopped before her, and suddenly stooped down with his hand extended out to her, Knell moved back just a touch before he spoke.

”Do you need help, miss?” the voiced echoed forth from the covered face, youthful and seemingly too young for his size. The gap between his appearance and the sound of the voice coming from inside startled Knell, and Canaan. The grasp that terror had upon her, the wonderment of him appearing before her faded, as she could only question that rift.
The young mermaid hesitated, and did not take the man’s hand before a rather familiar figure happened to . . . drop down next to her before suddenly springing back to her feet. The long hair, a soft, almost not color—it was Echo! Knell, once more startled, looked up at her friend with her eyes wide. Well, that solved one matter. . . . ’She’s going to lecture me, I just know it.’

As if right on cue, and after a slightly self conscious moment, Echo turned and looked down at her, expression stern. “Knell, where have you been?” The girl’s tone caused Knell to flinch, “You shouldn’t run off like that! It’s dangerous.” Echo chided her. At that moment, the two girls could seem more as a mother-daughter duo than friends. Knell, frowned as her face went red, being reprimanded in front of so many people. . . . “Plus, we don’t know anything about this place. You could have gotten seriously hurt.” Echo had leaned down low, speaking in a voice soft enough for only her to hear, the terseness was released from Echo’s vocalization at that, leaving only an edge of concern, and true worry.

’See, now you’ve gone and made the poor girl worry about you—I told you to be more careful.’

Knell choose to not respond to Canaan’s annoying ‘I told you so’ moment, if she did, he’d only go on and on. . . . Being chided by Echo was enough for her.

Before she could even respond though, yet another event transpired that kept the young mermaid silent for a moment—the sound of a lulling lute being strummed hit Knell’s ears, causing her to turn her gaze toward its source. A rather handsome young man was there, playing a piece of music that nearly brought out the natural musical senses Knell had as a mermaid, it made her want to sing. When he looked at her, and smiled, Knell drew her gaze away in embarrassment . . . and promptly reminded herself that such things were not what she needed to be concerned about right now. He was a stranger with a pretty face—a human, a commoner, she was a mermaid, a princess. He was not worthy of her. . . .

The bard gestured to the knight and the hand he held out for her to take, ’Oh, just take the man’s help would you? Even if you find the lute player good looking, it isn’t like he’s going to get anywhere with you. It can’t hurt just going along with things for a bit Knell.’ Knell heard Canaan lazily say to her, sounding almost annoyed.

Knell went and flickered her eyes back over to Echo before she turned her gaze back to the rather daunting knight before her, and pondered for a moment, feeling as if accepting his help was . . . below her. The idea of taking assistance from a land dweller was really something that Knell didn’t like the thought of, but, still. ’I don’t know Canaan. . . .’

’Just go along with things, or else I’ll do it.’

A look of displeasure spread across Knell’s face at her brother’s threat, and she breathed out harshly before she hesitantly moved a hand from the ground, and set it in the one offered to her. Quietly she adjusted position, getting to her knees. After this passed . . . she and Echo needed to return to the Mercenary.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
The knight gave only brief look toward the second girl as she fell next to the first. Similar to the first, she had features that were out of place among the locals. That and her sense of balance seemed no better. Her entrance and sudden chiding of the first girl would have seemed comical to the viewer.

But he retracted his attention away from the interruption, waiting for the first girl, Knell from what he briefly heard the others chattering, to respond. She made a brief look of displeasure, whether it was at him, her acquaintance, or the irritating bard that had snuck up behind him he couldn't tell. But she accepted his hand any way and he steadly pulled her to her feet.

Once she was standing again he made a quick look behind him to the crowd that had gathered. A brief cold wind blew through the street. The people quickly began to go back to their original business, some shivering briefly from an unusual coldness that touched them when the wind blew.

"The two of you are not from around here, I take it." He said, returning his attention to the girl. "If I may ask, are the two of you travelers? And if so why do you walk alone in these parts? This region is not safe after dark for the lonesome traveler."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
If he had visible eyebrows, he would have quirked them. Yet another girl had fallen down next to the growing group. Though this one seemed much different from the others, though like them she also seemed not from this region. She said something to Knell that he didn't catch, then started to cry for some strange reason he could not discern. While he could not find the reason behind her tears he felt he could at least offer her some aid as he'd done before.

"Is there a little faerie playing pranks nearby? For all the tripping doesn't seem normal." He mussed. "Is something wrong miss?" He asked as he drooped down to offer his hand to the red hair girl as he did earlier to the blue haired one. Though, even as he knelt down next to her he started to notice something... off about her. Familiar, but different.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by xKyrie
Once he ended his performance with the music trailing until it faded into nothing, the violet-haired bard waited a few moments for some of the applause to gradually die down before he walked towards where the beautiful tumbling ladies are.

Tumbling ladies- that is what he nicknamed for them, seeing them falling one after another as if they were not used with the pull of gravity. Such wonderful looking tumbling ladies they are though. For Clavis who had seen a lot the world has to offer, the way they looked are truly ephemeral and new. Aside from their beautiful faces there is something in their aura that charms and lures people around. Even someone like him who met a lot of girls can see how different they looked from an ordinary human-town girl.

After hastening his movements and keeping his lute back on his pack since he had every intention of talking to them before they leave. He did saw the teal-haired girl looking somewhat displeased for a moment before she had accepted the knight's help. They looked as if they were in a hurry and he suppose that they needed to return home.

Night had fallen after all and for human towns like this, people try to retire as early as they can.

He moved towards them and removed his now yellow-colored feathered hat from its position on his head. Today his hat is yellow almost golden in color adorned with a big black feather on one side. Seeing that he never had the same hat for more than a day, it would not be unusual for him to sport a different one from yesterday. He actually didn't know how to sew but if he can't come across a shop into the town to have something that can replace it, he'd make it a point to modify his own hat if he must. There is something in variety that makes him want to change this particular attire daily.

"If I may ask, are the two of you travelers? And if so why do you walk alone in these parts? This region is not safe after dark for the lonesome traveler." He heard the knight ask upon reaching them and impulsively decided to cut in. He charmingly bowed low as what is customary for a gentleman and smiled pleasantly.

"Good evening", he started noting the darkened color of the sky beforehand. With a wide smile plastered in his face he added, "sir knight and lovely ladies." At the end of his sentence he gestured to the girls and bowed again. He approached the first one who tripped and took her hand, softly kissing the air above it. "I hope you are well, did your fall hurt you?" The violet-haired man inquired her, gently dropping her hand and looking at her with eyes full of concern.

When his eyes turned to the taller girl beside, he also reached for her hand and repeated his actions before, "You too, sweet lady, I hope that the fall didn't hurt you." Addressing them both he then added in a loud inquiring voice and his eyes twinkling, "What are your name, my fair ladies? Sir knight here is correct when he said that you mustn't walk without escort during this time of the night!"

Suddenly a new tall girl arrived, tripping like the first ones did and lightly commented on the shorter girl's hair. He stared at her and noticed her long red hair tied in a pony tail and bright orange eyes. Noting her beautiful face which undeniably has a different light from the two girls, but still a lovely sight to see. The knight once again offered his hand for her to take. Clavis bowed one more time tucking his hat in front of his chest. "Good evening too, mademoiselle. This is-" He stopped himself at what he was about to say when he shockingly saw the first batch of tears fall from her face. Panicked, he swiftly worn his hat over his head and raised both of his hands in alarm, "My lady?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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Angel's orange eyes darted all around her, why was she being stared at? Was it because of her sandles that were killing her? Or was it because of her tripping over her own two feets? She had been walking for days without rest and she had grown tired and close from fainting. "A-Ah... Thank you..." Angel mumbled, standing up with the help of the strange knight. She then ended up slightly panicked at the strange bard who was possibly going to flirt with her.

"Sorry. I'm just a bit home sick." Angel aplogized, then shifting her attention to the knight. "Her hair reminds me of the ocean, where I once lived..." Angel explained little, but it was still enough for them to understand. "I'm Angelique Silver, part of the Silver clan far from this region." Angel stated, giving a slight bow as she introduced herself. "But anyhow, I do think the faerie are also at work. I've tripped far to many times these past few days. Yesterday I got up to about 20 falls. Not the brightest of days." Angel confessed, pride still managing to glow in her eyes. Her clan's tattoo showing on her thigh, "I was hopeing today would be better, though it seems it won't be much different..."

Angel twisted around, worried eyes on the way she came from. She had upset a few people back in the last town, but would they dare continue chasing her? Her hair was slowly twisting out of it's holder, coming undone quickly as she turned back to the knight an the bard. "Thank you both for your concern, I should be taking my leave at this point. I have a lot of things I need to do before tomorrow's dawn." Angel explained, giveing another small bow in gradatude and jogging away with a small wave.

Of course though, the people from the town over came into view and followed Angel slightly, giving a slight glare at those behide them, mainly the knight though. Angel escaped into a local store, hiding only to change into a black haired maiden, her demon form. Being a half-demon, turning into a demon was considerably a major perk. Walking out of the shop, she looked around to see the people who followed her were confused and cussing like sailors. That could only make the raven haired girl laugh, enjoying the sight of the confused trouble makers. They glared at her like expected but she didn't care, they had no idea it was her.

"She's inside boys." Angel simply stated with a shrug, relizeling her hair was out of it's pony tail. Of course, she had to jog back to the knight, bard, and two other girls and reach down and pick up the band that kept her hair in it's pony tail. "I'll give this back to Angel." Angel said, a smile tugging on her lips. She wanted to see if she could confessed them with her demon form, to see how they'd react. "Those people have been chasing us for days, hopeflly we could lose them today." Angel mumbled to herself, loud enough for those near by to hear.

"Would someone kindly show me to the Inn?" Angel asked politely, tucking a strand of her black hair behide her ear with a tugging smile.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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As Knell had been assisted back to her feet, she made quick work to go about brushing her front off of any dirt that may’ve gone and gathered upon it from the cold ground, a faint blush was still upon her features. The bard had gone and gotten her flustered with that smile of his, and the fact that she had to accept help from a land dweller due to one of Canaan’s threat did not make for a very happy mermaid princess. First, she was embarrassed and secondly she was reduced to having to take aid from another—neither of which Knell was fond of. Inside her head, Knell could hear her brother snickering away at her predicament and jumbled thoughts regarding the matters.

A shiver travelled up the mermaid’s spine as a strange sort of breeze blustered on through the town, though she did not allow her discomfort to show . . . weakness was not something she needed to display. Even if it were to remain a secret to all, she was a mermaid, and Merfolk were suppose to be strong, intelligent and above the land dwellers. They were not suppose to suffer embarrassment, nor be reduced to the state she was in now.

"The two of you are not from around here, I take it." Knell allowed her aqua colored eyes to flicker up as the rather menacing knight began to speak. He was referring to herself, and to Echo . . . yes, it was rather apparent by looking at their hair coloring that they were not of local origins. "If I may ask, are the two of you travelers? And if so why do you walk alone in these parts? This region is not safe after dark for the lonesome traveler." The voice from the man echoed from the metal helmet, giving it an oddly hollow effect. In a way, it was an unnerving feature that didn’t sit very well with Knell. Regarding his question, Knell felt it wasn’t his business to know. Even if he was chivalrous enough to assist her in getting back to her feet, the knight was still a stranger, and the matter regarding her and Echo travelling was their business.

Though Knell herself truly did not enjoy wandering about on land like this, always falling and tripping, gravity giving her Hell, having to worry in the back of her mind about those who tried to assassinate her weeks before. . . . Even if she wanted to go back into the water in order to hide—the business she and Echo were attending to was theirs and only theirs. ’Would you stop it with the arrogant thought pattern Knell? Here, you’re not a princess; all you are is a simple person, a commoner.’

’Canaan, I can’t let myself seem weak to Echo, she has enough to be concerned with right now, doesn’t she?’

’Oh, and acting like you’re a priss helps you look strong of heart?’

Knell sighed to herself at Canaan’s comment. Well, it wasn’t like her brother was wrong about that . . . but still, how she choose to act was her choice, wasn’t it? Knell’s own mindless task was interrupted when one of her hands was suddenly snatched up and away from brushing off her skirt. At the sudden gesture, Knell wrenched her eyes up and looked at the one who had dared to be so forward as to grab her hand. It was the bard again, the fact the man was now holding onto her hand caused the teal haired girl’s face to go redder, blending in well with the orange tint cast upon the world by the bleeding sun. The crowd of people who had stopped to witness her little fall were scattering further and further apart as the violet-haired man seemed to kiss the air above her hand before he allowed it to return to its owner.

His eyes were laced with concern, "I hope you are well, did your fall hurt you?" he inquired.

Knell pulled her hand up from her own side, the one the bard had air kissed, and gently held it to her chest as she drew her gaze to the side, and away from him and the knight. ’Geez, he’s really getting to you isn’t he Knell?’
You tell me Canaan, you are inside of my skull and are aware of every little thing about me—physical, emotional or mental, so you already know.’ Knell replied to her brother, a rather bashful expression upon her young face.
’Want me to take care of the problem for you sis?’ he offered, a rather anxious tone in his voice.

To this Knell gave a small shake of her head, no, even if this strange bard was making her flustered, she didn’t want Canaan to step in and drive him off. She didn’t need to go and do that, it would only rouse questions about her, and then she and Echo would have to leave the town that much sooner. In addition, she had to think about the fact that she had hired the Mercenary—even if she had paid him enough to not ask questions, she didn’t want him to also begin questioning her. The last thing needed right now, was for Knell and Echo to draw too much attention to themselves.
Her thoughts jumbled at the moment, Knell was detached from the world until she heard, "Ya know, your hairs pretty cool."

The sudden compliment startled the mermaid back into reality due to how close the person saying it was to her. The voice was female, and fairly soft, it was kind. A slight gasp working from her lungs, Knell clutched onto her hand tighter and instinctively took a step back. There was a new face here, a girl who was not much shorter than Echo was—but looked entirely different, long red hair with eyes to match. Face flushed with embarrassment still, Knell turned her aqua gaze to her best friend, to Echo, and edged toward the girl. First the knight, then the bard and now . . . a rail of a girl who wore rather revealing clothing.

’Canaan, have I gone and turned into some sort of magnet for the weird. . . ?‘

’You’ve always been sort of a magnet Knell, I just didn’t know you’d be causing these sorts of characters to gravitate toward you.’

Knell blinked and observed the actions and listened to the words exchanged by the three people who had spontaneously interacted with her out of the blue. The knight mused over whether fae were at work for causing all three of the girls to trip as they had, the redheaded girl began to cry as the bard began to attempt a line upon her before being startled by the tears she shed.

The girl responded to the words before thanking the bard for his concern, and heading off, Knell watched the odd girl go, never quite having seen someone such as her before. Knell blinked, and remained clasping onto the hand the bard had taken hold of before as the tint in her cheeks began to fade. The mermaid opened her lips as a breeze stirred up again, and blew through her long hair, “I am not sure . . . but I do believe I remember reading about people like her in the past, her style of clothing—I believe the terms used to refer to them were shinobi and more commonly, ‘ninja.’”

’And that information is helpful to you how now?’

A sigh happening from her lips at Canaan’s words, Knell turned her gaze back to the bard and to the knight, before she allowed her hands to return to her sides. She stared at the two men with a passive expression upon her features as she mused over what it was she ought to do now—her physical state had been inquired about, as well as why it was she and Echo were upon their own. Canaan had more or less told her not to act like a priss with them, it didn’t make her seem strong. . . . Just arrogant. The knight had aided her, and the bard had been courteous. In response to this, Knell delicately clutched at her skirt with her fingers, and lifted it up slightly as she gave the two men a polite curtsy—a custom she had read about before leaving home. It was proper manners for a girl to give such a gesture when showing respect or otherwise.

She bowed her head slightly down, and quickly returned to her normal stance before clutching her hands at her front. “I wish to thank the both of you for the kindness shown to myself and my friend, it’s not often you find such politeness in others, especially when those others are strangers. My name is Knell-Li . . . Blackburn, and my dear friend here,” Knell paused to gesture to Echo with one of her hands, “is Echo Thrussell.”

’Careful there Knell, you about slipped and gave your real name. Wouldn’t want to go and spoil your secret so soon, would you?’ Canaan chided her.

“The two of us are indeed travellers, but our reasons for doing so are simply that we wish to see the world. And we are not alone, we have hired ourselves an escort to guide and protect us.” She added on, lying through her teeth about the first bit.

It was at this time a strange girl with ink black hair appeared before them all, stooping over to pick something off the ground. There was something familiar about her. . . . "I'll give this back to Angel." she said, smiling. Knell stared at her while Canaan stirred, indicating that something was off about her. Though her lips moved again, the teal-haired mermaid was unable to perceive what it was she had said before she raised her voice up again to ask a question, "Would someone kindly show me to the Inn?"

Well now, Knell and Echo needed to return to the Inn anyway, the Mercenary. ’Mm, perfect timing, eh Knell? This gives you a palpable excuse to get away from these men.’

’So it does, but you felt something was off about her, didn’t you? Should I even volunteer if you. . . ?’

’She seems strangely familiar is all; I don’t think it’s much to be concerned with.’

With Canaan’s confirmation, Knell gave the stranger a smile, and nodded her head before stepping out into the now cleared out streets, and looking back to the girl. “If I may be so bold, I can accompany you to the Inn, my friend and I need to return there anyway.” Again, Knell gave a curtsy to the men from before, “Again, thank you two for your kindness, but Echo and myself need to be on our way. We shall be in town for the next two days or so, if you feel compelled, you may look us up at the Inn.” With that, Knell turned on her heel and began a steady walk to the Inn—truthfully, the building was not that far away so the walk only took a minute or two reach before Knell idly headed inside, heading back to greet the Mercenary of her return.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by xKyrie
The violet-haired man almost let out a triumphant smirk when he saw the teal-haired girl getting flustered once after he 'kissed' her hand. He instead settled for an indulging smile, his eyes twinkling merrily towards her. She looks lovely getting flustered, Clavis thought his smile widening, noticing her bashful expression.

When he was standing far away before, playing his lute out of the blue in order to divert the crowd's attention to him instead of hers and the other tumbling girl, he wasn't able to fully appreciate her beauty. He knew that she looked beautiful and ephemeral from afar but now that he stood in front of her face to face, he can testify that her beauty is not of this world. She is truly breathtaking. There is certain innocence but unbidden pride shining from her eyes and very soul. Someone like Clavis, who lives to appreciate the charms of women species can greatly deduce that she's not a girl of normal status.

He then heard her gratefully thanking him and the knight, awhile after. He can't help but rub his hand into the back of his neck, feeling the uncharacteristic shyness settle into his being. "It is nothing," he replied smiling widely and that was when the red-haired girl entered and tripped in front of them. He had really lost his composure and was thoroughly thankful when the knight had more sense than he did to help up the fallen girl. After crying out loud in public and stating her name he noticed odd things from the red-haired girl. Her eyes notably darted to her surroundings first before it met with his directly and the next thing he knew was her looking panicked. For what, he had no clue.

Clavis almost bowed himself when he saw her bowing after she introduced herself. He was about to speak up and introduce in return when she twisted around seemingly searching for something around the crowd. She bowed in gratitude to them once again before walking away and immediately leaving them.

Not long after her disappearance though, a black-haired girl appeared, getting a hair tie from the ground and stated with a smile tugging in her lips, "I'll give this back to Angel." He observed this one quietly, roving his eyes all over her not in a lecherous manner but one who is wholly focusing attention. From her notable features, undoubtedly another one of those beautiful inhumane faces as what he could see-she's clearly not of pure human descent, to her unusual eyes, she looked eerily familiar.

He stared at her coyly. Looking at her directly, eye to eye and he then neared 'Angel's companion'. Raising a hand to her hair, looking like he was reaching to touch it but instead settling for tracing the shape of her long straight hair freely 'flowing' with the evening air.

"Black looks lovelier on you my lady."

He spoke out loud, a flirtatious smile pasted in his face.

Before the girls left, he bowed low, taking off his hat and tucking it in front of his chest. Knell as what he had heard her refer to herself not moments ago, informed the other girl about accompanying her for the directions of the inn.

"It is certainly a pleasure meeting you mademoiselles. I am Clavis by the way, a simple travelling bard." He cast the three of them coy smiles, placing his hat promptly back on the top of his head.

"And my lady, I might take you on that offer. I want to see you soon," He added looking straight at the teal-haired enigmatic girl. Clavis ended his speech with another bow before he went to the opposite direction, back to his original destination. When he passed by the knight, he gave him an acknowledging nod and waved farewell, "Goodbye, Sir Knight".

--
As he was walking towards the edge of the town, he contemplated the earlier scenario. There is something with Knell Blackburn that lures Clavis to her. He had been quite surprising himself with his impulsiveness to learn more about her. Certainly, it was normal for him to become interested to every girl that he meets; it is one of his life's greatest goals after all! To talk to all the beautiful women of Gaea Minor, be it of human species or not, but still he's not this intrigued. Recalling her shyness yet contradictory pride, he wondered who she really was. She seemed someone of nobility but he can't be sure since she didn't seem to be part of the royal lineage for the ones next in throne.

It was during moments like this that Clavis liked to have the ability to remove the cursed earring from his ears and listen to all the thoughts of every living thing around him. While it may cause him a major headache, sorting out every thoughts he comes across, it will still favorably help him to learn more about the mysterious personality of Knell, the tumbling teal-haired girl with eyes the astounding color of blue oceans.

When he reached the darkened forest, with the moon now totally taking control of the night sky, Clavis settled into the innermost part and settled on the very first tree stump that he came across. He slowly and carefully dropped all his baggage, leaning everything into a tall tree nearby. He opened his makeshift pack, something made out of cloth one that a gypsy gave to him on the last town that he visited and took out his lute. He strummed it once, letting the music trail off in the quiet forest.

Playing Entertainer once again, he let the music envelop the whole area just strumming the lute to his heart's content.

He had already finished playing two pieces when he found himself staring contemplatively at nothing in particular. Knell-li, he recalled her stating, stopping herself abruptly in the middle of her speech as if hiding something else. He didn't know how he thought of it, but there is something in her that makes Clavis think that she had not been fully truthful with them.

He gently laid his lute aside and searched his pockets for the familiar coin bag. It wasn't in his expectation to earn money through his music but performing in front of an open crowd seemed to be the easiest way to earn these coins. Shaking it once, twice and thrice as if deciding it's value by hearing the sound, Clavis felt his lips curving into a smile.

I think it's time I take you up on that offer, Margaret. He recalled the brunette girl, with her pouty lips and fluttering eyes. She was one of those girls who had readily offered him beforehand, a room in their inn. He did decline before since he didn't see the use of getting a room and not sleeping in it. But once he recalled the place where Knell and her companions disappeared, he finally decided.

He might have to postpone his nightly playing, he figured not regretting it one bit but still feeling some disappointment in it. He had made it a point to play during the night time. Ever since he started his journey for life, not once did he fail to play the whole night away being accompanied with his lute and masterpieces. This would be the first time in months that he will, apparently.

Standing up from the ground and brushing the dirt and leaves off his pants, he gathered his things and trudged the path to the direction of the inn. They may be asleep at this time around, but Clavis figured what else a better way to learn more about Knell than be near her and her companion? A planned meeting may just help him know about her more.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
The knight refrained from commenting when the 'ninja' left and returned with a different hair color. The change was what cemented his suspicions as too what she was. The Bard apparently figured it out as well, but apparently didn't have the same sense to hold his tongue about the issue.

Though the both of them were curious, they were not his original focus. He kept his attention on the blue haired girl as she spoke.

“I wish to thank the both of you for the kindness shown to myself and my friend, it’s not often you find such politeness in others, especially when those others are strangers. My name is Knell-Li . . . Blackburn, and my dear friend here, is Echo Thrussell.” She said with a brief curtsy. The action caused the knight shifted slightly as she spoke, but said nothing. “The two of us are indeed travelers, but our reasons for doing so are simply that we wish to see the world. And we are not alone, we have hired ourselves an escort to guide and protect us.” There was another minor twitch of his finger, but again he held his tongue. When the ninja spoke, asking about the location of the inn, Knell offered to show her the way.

“Again, thank you two for your kindness, but Echo and myself need to be on our way. We shall be in town for the next two days or so, if you feel compelled, you may look us up at the Inn.” She said before turning to leave. The knight merely gave a short bow to her as she went. He mostly ignored the bard until the violet haired man addressed him directly.

"Goodbye, Sir Knight". The knight glanced briefly at the bard like he was just acknowledging his existence, only to dismiss him again when said bard left before he could respond.

The knight walked away from the spot without another word. Though his mind was already working. The girl, Knell, wasn't very good at lying. There were certain mannerisms she had that didn't sit with that of an ordinary traveler. That, and both her... presence and the number of "Unique" individuals that had suddenly been drawn to her suggested a something drawing this meeting to happen.

A brief glance behind him and he could the small glow of light fluttering away. A firefly most would guess it to be, but he knew better. His hand shot out and closed around the little speck of light as it passed. He held it gently, not wishing to crush it in his hand by accident, and slowly brought his closed gauntlet near his helm before slowly releasing his clutched fingers.

Resting in the palm of his metal palm was a little glowing sprite. Her wings were long and slender, shaped like that of a dragonfly's. Her eyes were entirely black, and shone like wet stones in fire light. She was also pouting at him, like a spoiled child that had just been caught in the act of some mischief, which was technically accurate description of of what had happened. The glow she emitted changed from a sandy green to an orange tinted gold, indicating annoyance but still feeling playful.

"Ah, what did you have to go and do that for," She hissed, she voice small and squeaky yet somehow clear despite the size difference. "I was having fun! Do you know how rare it is to find that many people that easy to play with? Why they practically fall flat on their own. Oh the much fun I would have had with those the tree." She started to giggle to herself, lost in her dreams of the petty games she would play upon the unsuspecting three.

"As 'interesting' as your little games sound, I must confess my intrigue as to why you chose to play them upon the girls? Especially with three of the strange courts nearby."

"Four, actually." The knight paused, the sprite took it as an unspoken question. "You miscounted the bard, did the difference of hair color not go noticed by you? Or were you too busy trying to be the 'chivalrous and caring knight' to the girl and the little daemon spawn at the time?" She made a mocking gesture as her tone became joking. The knights hand started to close back around her again. "Alright I was joking, lighten up!" She hissed, and he reopened his hand again. She made muttering's of a typical lack of humor on his part before continuing. "And you wrong on two parts, the daemon spawn and the bard aren't part of the either evening or mourning courts. Their from too far away to be members of any of our forest domains."

"Yet you still acted despite the chance of discovery?" The inquired. "That seems like quite the foolish thing to do, even for one as simple minded as you."

Her response was to yell at him. "Hey! I was just doing as I was told! Don't call me simple minded or I might be putting warts on your feet." She huffed and crossed her arms, turning away from him in another pout, her glow changing to a darker shade of orange.

"So someone did task you to do this?"

She winced and turned back to him. "You tricked me into saying that didn't you." The sprite eyed him irritatedly. "I'm supposed to be the trickster, remember?"

"Would you have told me if I simply asked?" She turned away from him again in yet another pout. "Of course I'd never tell a big dummy bucket head like you!" She shouted.

"And so the deception was needed." He said firmly. Stretching his arm back out he released the sprite. "Go now, play your games elsewhere. I have my own business"" to attend to in town now." She flew out of his hand pausing to stick her tongue out him and shout "I'll pay you back for that, bucket head! A trick for a trick, mark my words!" before flying off. He would have cringed at that if he could. Members of the fey rarely went back on promises of revenge like that. He could probably expect some mud getting splashed on him or, or step in horse droppings, or something else equally petty in the next few days.

But more importantly a Fae was behind the 'random tripping' that befell all three women. One that was asked to make this meeting happen between the five involved.

Was this what the voice of the cold Autumn wind meant?

His conversation went uninterrupted because the people walking by him somehow seemed to not notice him and the sprite. A stark contrast to earlier when the crowds avoided him like he was diseased. That changed when he moved again, his presence somehow notice able again as the people once more avoided getting in his way.

He returned to his horse, the creature had drawn a small group to admire it. It's coat seeming to shine like silver under the thin moonlight. While the knight tended to make people weary of his presence the horse tended to make others drawn to its.

A mistake on others parts though, as one could argue that the beast was more dangerous then him.

The small group of three that surrounded the horse dispersed when they noticed him returning. He motioned for the creature to follow him. "Come, you can eat later. We have to find our own lodgings for the night." The horse snorted, displeased but compliant, and they both set off to find a stable.

They had meant to only pass through town on their way, but now it would appear that he was going to have reason too stay for the next few nights after all.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Knell-Lia Maris Poseidon de Oceania Character Portrait: Echo-Una Acacia Amalric de Oceania Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod Character Portrait: Cáel 'Art' Artachshatra

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"Have you made your decision, Agent Mercury?"

Art had been leaning on a railing at the time, a railing that curved in a semi-circle around the outer edge of marble stone that lay beneath his feet. It was a terrace, and he was looking out from it, his eye cast outwards towards the beach that lay on the eastern border of the town he was in. It was late then, the dusk of the night slowly fading and night truly being cast into darkness. The voice came from behind him, and he offered no acknowledgment at first, his gaze still remaining on the far beach. He didn't need to look anyway, he knew he the voice belonged to. It was Agent Sol, his superior. His only superior, at that. And a person very close to him.

"Agent Mercury, I implore you. Have you made your decision?"

He could hear Sol approaching behind him, footsteps getting closer. Before Sol got to far, Art held up his right hand in a gesture that signaled Sol to stop. "I have." His voice was steeled, hiding whatever emotions he could from Sol.

"And? What have you dec-"

"Love. I choose love." He had cut Sol off, his words laced with an unintentional harshness. The hand he had placed on the rail tightened, his knuckles beginning to turn white. He lowered his gaze to the lit city below him. He thought it was beautiful.

"I have made you very well aware of the consequences of that choice, Agent Mercury. So I will ask you again; Have you made your decision?"

Art turned his gaze up to the moon, taking a deep inhale of the night air. He stared for a moment before turning around to face Sol and nodding, beginning to walk past Sol, bumping their shoulders in the process. He took a few more steps forward before turning his head back, his uncovered eye looking at Sol.

"Yes."

†††


It had been nearly a year now that had passed since he had made up his mind, choosing love and ultimately sacrificing his position in the Celestial Freelancers. Not that it mattered much, because his love was sacrificed as a consequence, and he was cast out. Since then, Art had been offering up his services for a fee, as a mercenary. He didn't ask questions, he just did what he was told if he was payed enough coin.

And as it were, Art had just been taken upon for his services, but a young lady and her companion. And went as any other of his deals went. He was asked to protect, and he was given money. Upon receiving the money, he offered up only a singular nod and became their armed escort. No questions asked, from either side. Upon listening to them talk, he discovered their names. Echo and Knell. And so, right before they had arrived into town, he had offered them his.

"You can address me as Art."

Those were the first and only words he had said to them so far, and as soon as they hit town, the two girls wondered off whilst Art went off to find the Inn. That doesn't, of course, mean he simply left them alone. It hadn't taken him much more than a few mere minutes before he had acquired lodging and was following them from a distance again, assuring they stayed out of trouble and harm's way.

He was going to approach them, too, but the two girls split up and one was soon eating dirt in the middle of a crowd. Art would have moved in to help her himself had it not been for the large armored man that approached instead. Art remained cautious at that, placing his right hand on the hilt of the sword that lay on his right hip. The other five were on his back, two being placed over three. He was at an unrecognizable distance at this point, merely laying in wait for something to threaten them. Which, of course, never happened. And as soon as the small band of people were together, they were apart again.

As they disbanded, Art himself weaved through crowds and ended up back at the Inn before his employers. But only barely, for he was not even returned there for a mere minute before one of the girls walked in and nearly ran right into him. Art easily prevented it by moving his hands up to place them on the girl's shoulders and root her in place, disabling her from walking forward any further. When he noted she was stable, he dropped his hands to his side once more and gave her a look. It was the one who had payed him, Knell.

"You're a fool, stumbling all over the place. You pay me to protect you, but I implore that you be more careful. I can't exactly protect you if you're drawing attention to yourself, which you also seem to have done already." His voice was slightly hushed, and his eye turned upwards to rest upon Echo, and then one of the girls from the group behind her. His hands found Knell's shoulders once more and he pivoted on his heel, seemingly turning her with him and moving her out of earshot from the group, voice dropping to a whisper. "Not to mention, you've brought somebody with you. You're too trusting. That'll be your downfall. I'll do my part in protecting you, your friend, and even those you bring into the group. But you must do your part in making sure I don't have to protect you. Got it? I'm just a precautionary measure."

He released his hands once more and frowned, realizing that he either just scared the girl, or made her angry. Either way, he steeled himself for whatever reaction she was about to offer up in retaliation, hand finding it's way back to the hilt of his sword, and his gaze finding it's way to the black-haired girl that followed in behind the two girls he had been payed to protect.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
Song.

Few could truly understand the full significance of it. Words and melodies, used to express the true sense of emotion through sound and reverberations. To some, these sounds can strike a cord in their own souls and echo their meaning. Song was in a sense a message, written in it's own language. You could hear the rhythm and verse, but you could only understand the meaning if you knew the feeling behind it, even if you were the one singing it. This is what all songs are under the surface.

Beneath that, a song sung from the heart held an even deeper meaning. One that needed a spiritual knowledge to comprehend.

Even if he couldn't hear it, he could feel the song even from where he walked. It was an echo, ancient, from a time long, long ago. Even if it was only a shadow of the former meaning, the essence of the song still washed over him. A reminder of the meaning the words, and the sway they once had withes the courts. It remained a minor struggle for the knight to not get caught in the sway of the feeling.

He shook himself of the songs influence. The feeling, though... enticing, was distracting him from his thoughts. The knight had spotted the bard in the street after he had found a stable for his horse. While he had written the musician off earlier as interloper, he had become slightly curious toward what the sprite had said. Particularly of what she had said of his origins and connections to the creatures of the east.

The knight approached the bard from behind, stopping behind him just as he called out a greeting to the red haired girl, Angelique if he remembered correctly.

"You should not have exposed the girl so quickly." The knight said from where he stood, arms crossed as he watched the inn. "Some here in the west aren't as... tolerant of those with her kind of parentage as they are in the east."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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Angel smiled lightly as she noticed the bard from before. His purple hair made him noticeable easily to her, which came as a surprise since she was horrid at everything else. "Oi, it's good to see you, but I am not helpless! I'm a proud ninja of the Silver clan!" Angel whispered slightly harshly, yet slightly kind. She was still in a large amount of trouble with a few people whom seemed to follow her here. She opened her mouth to say something, yet the knight came seemed displeased about the way the bard had given her away.

"Indeed... I was actually injured in the last town due to my race. Some of them even followed me here... I do not believe being with me is safe. So be aware you may be harmed if you stay with me." Angel tried to warn gently, wanting no harm to take place to anyone. "And to answer your question sir, I am simply looking for a mere job I can earn a few coins for quickly to make sure I have enough for food and to keep paying for my room at the Inn. I also believe I do not know either of your names." Angel politely stated, fixing her saddles without much trouble. Looking up at the sky, she smiled as the first star began to glow. Beautifully, she noted who quickly the days seemed to have gone by, not much longer would be be able to train, meaning she may not become the head of her family after all. They of course would love that, not wanting a half-breed as an heir.

It would be bad for their reputation, knowing how many enemies the Silvers' had. A weak member if their family would certainly be their down fall, and they obviously didn't want that. They didn't even want her at all, or they wouldn't have kicked her out or treated her so poorly. Perhaps he father had done the same to her mother, or maybe her parents weren't of the Sliver clan at all. Maybe her father had adopted her, but that was besides the point.

What she felt strange was how the knight seemed to care so much about if the bard had exposed her. No one had ever cared before, even if it was mild. She was simply used to it, and felt it was awkward how she was suddenly slightly cared for. She was a prideful girl, tending to always plot things slightly or to certain people spill her guts. Some just seemed to have a strange effect on her like the girls inside the Inn.

Perhaps it was because she felt some strange high and mighty personality like her father had. She knew that the personality like that could easily make her do such things, but did one if those girls have that personality?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
The knight gave a brief incline of his shoulders as a short bow. "My name is Crane, Ichabod miss." He said, his voice in a polite tone. However body language changed quickly, his arms coming uncrossed and his body shifting in stance. "You said someone was chasing after you?" Crane was slightly more alert now. He gave a brief scan over the street before settling his sight back on Angelique, trying to spot the wound she spoke of. "Do you need any help? I could 'persuade' them into leaving you be."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by xKyrie
"Oi, it's good to see you, but I am not helpless! I'm a proud ninja of the Silver clan!" The red-haired girl replied as answer to his query and he was about to respond back when a familiar looming figure suddenly appeared. Bowing as what he had been used to, he then heard the knight comment about his earlier actions.

Remembering perfectly well on how he revealed the girl's true nature, he let out a sheepish smile. He turned back to Angel and bowed in apology. "I hope you forgive me my lady. I was just so entranced with your beauty that all sense of common sense had left me before I can have the chance of using those properly. Letting out a disarming smile, he listened closely as she told them her purpose for going out so late this evening.

With the current tone of her voice and her worried demeanor from before, Clavis can quietly agree with what the knight had spoken off. Though he had an inkling and an idea about the girl's predicament--since it was quite clear from the way she acts, still he decided to momentarily turn his self blind with regards to this issue. It was not any of his care to add himself into her concerns. Yes, there is that feeling the faint stirrings of curiosity in his mind, but that was the end of that. Instead, he just continued to watch nonspeaking as the knight introduce his name towards Angel.

Crane then had surprisingly volunteered into helping the girl persuade her perpetrators to leave. It had almost took all of his control to stop himself from laughing at the turn of events. It seemed that the bard is not the only one who had been enticed with the presence of these mysterious persons. Even the knight who appeared to be uptight and bound by the normal rules of the society is obviously taken with these ladies.

Thankfully he was able to control his amusement and had finally settled on waiting for the red-haired girl's response.

Not more than awhile later on, he decided to make things more interesting(for him) and piped up next to the knight: "I am Clavis, my lady, my sire". He bowed customarily again to each of them and added," I am a simple travelling bard but I can assure you that I will be able to help you anyway I can. I only have a question however, where is Mademoiselle Knell and Echo? Are you not with them?" He slightly studied the almost empty surrounding as he waited for the response.

It was obviously so late at night but it wouldn’t hurt to give a helping hand to those who may or may not need it. It is certain that Angel is an enigma in her own, with that unnatural beauty and unbidden spunk, but still she was not the main purpose why the violet-haired musician decided to postpone his nightly activities. He did this in favor of being near the interesting group. He recalled the teal-haired girl stating that they had a hired a help for their safety and security. He would have liked to offer his services but instead decided to act upon it. Such a shame for a loss of opportunity though.

And now, even if he’s not certain Angel is their friend, it would not hurt to associate himself with the girl. Sooner or later, at the morrow, he will meet them again, that is for certain. For now, he would take the chance to unravel this enigmatic personality and also take some time learning something about a certain uptight knight as he could.

He will try to be not as loud and attention-seeking as he usually is however. It would not do him any good if he is noticed by the higher ups. Those who belong to the rulers of this land. If what Angel said is true, then he must take absolute caution more than he necessarily needs. He is quite happy with this freedom that he has. And while he is, as if, is someone who is lacking a main direction, still he is happy. At least in this new way of living that he had, he have his own free will to follow. He wouldn't dare want it any other way.

Still grinning happily, he then decided to offer the room that he recently acquired. “I actually have a room rented out for two days stay, my lady.” He started speaking in an merry and encouraging tone, something that does not belong with the serenity of the night. “I’m afraid I have no other use for it except something to leave my pack... if you’re looking for a place to stay."

He gestured to Margaret's inn and then added, "I am happy to give it to you. I won't charge you a single dime for it!”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
Crane shifted his attention back down to the bard next to him. Though one couldn't see his face, something about his body language made it seem as though he was giving the Purple haired teen an accusing stare. "I trust you're not using your offer as a way of 'taking advantage' of her situation." The knight said, his voice breaking it's monotone for a brief moment of suspicion. Crane knew he had little reason to mistrust the bard and his intents, and was sure that Angelique could defend herself, but he was well versed in stories of maidens being taken in by strangers.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Clavis Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by xKyrie
When he heard the knight's retort, the violet-haired bard can't help it. He lost control and laughed out loud at what Crane uttered.
He chuckled and after a few moments tried to calm down when he noticed his companion’s expressions. “I am sorry”, he started stating and placing his hat promptly back on his head. He was very tempted to bow down before them but fortunately successfully squashed the urge.

It was a classic reaction- what Crane had said to him. But the way the knight worded it, in such a suspicious and mistrusting overtone made the moment the more hilarious for Clavis and before he knew it, he had burst out laughing in front of the two.

He sheepishly smiled and turned to them. And with the traces of his earlier merriment still obvious in his face, he uttered, “You should worry not, Sir Knight. I would do no such thing. In fact, I am leaving right now. I was just thinking what waste it would be if Mademoiselle Angelique here would be inclined to search for an odd job just to get a room to stay fortnight when I have one unused for myself.” He looked at the red-haired beauty and smiled encouragingly, his crimson-colored eyes twinkling, “You wouldn’t even feel my presence my lady, and I surely would be gone most of the night.”

‘I’ll be out for a drink anyways’ , he trailed off in his head as he gazed at the girl’s reaction. It had been quite a while after all. He continued remembering the last time that he went out and hunted; a week or two ago if he wasn’t mistaken. He was abruptly forced to, when he had surprisingly met one of his very few friends left.

Though he knew full well that his body can still handle the thirst for several days or more, the recent turn of activities made him rethink his plan and draft a new one. He didn’t knew what interesting things lie ahead, and though he is not certain that such fascinating phenomena would essentially occur, still it would not hurt him to be ready. Such readiness and alertness had helped him quite more than he can count in his very long presence and he decided it wouldn’t hurt him quite a bit more if he will still to continue to do so now.

At this moment whether Angelique takes the room or not, he didn’t care that much. In truth, all he does, whether they be the tiniest or the biggest detail is only for his absolute amusement. Something that will surely cause a definite change compared to his usual quiet and ordinary existence.

Studying Crane at the corner of his eyes, he held back a smirk. The knight… one of those typical fully covered people who seemed to have the greatest pleasure of keeping their identities secret. If there is one of the most uninteresting people he met today, this armored man would have topped the list.

No, it wasn’t anything about him that made Clavis think that way. There is really nothing belittling or dull and monotonous about Crane and his metal suit. Simply put, the wandering bard is not interested to the species of the same gender in any way or form. Though there were those odd people who seemed to call out to his curiosity, it is still such rarity for the musician to keep an active inquisitiveness to those who are of the male kind.

He held back further judgments on this knight however. Who knew, he may just be one of those very few that will spark a light of interest in his almost dulling existence.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Angelique Silver Character Portrait: Crane Ichabod

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#, as written by Wake
Crane watched the Bard leave. He really couldn't help but find that man to be an annoyance. Turning back to Angelique, he waited for her to respond to his earlier question. He really didn't like the idea of leaving her to fend off any pursuers if she was still injured.