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Astrid Grünewald

"Only a fool defies the Nightfangs, only the wicked deserve their wrath."

399 views · located in The West

a character in “Exalted: A Tale in the Time of Tumult”, as played by Sepokku

Description

Name: Astrid GrünewaldType and Caste/Aspect: Lunar Exalted, of the Full Moon Caste
Nature: Vigilante (Against Deathlords)
Anima Banner: Silvery flames
Totem Animal: White Tiger (Formerly Diamondback Rattlesnake)

Image



Attributes




Physical

STRENGTH (4) DEXTERITY (5) STAMINA (5)

Social

CHARISMA (2) MANIPULATION (1) APPEARANCE (4)

Mental

PERCEPTION (5) INTELLIGENCE (1) WITS (3)



Abilities


WARFARE

ARCHERY--------- 0
ATHLETICS------- 3
AWARENESS------ 2
DODGE----------- 4
INTEGRITY------- 0
MARTIAL ARTS--- 5
MELEE------------ 0
RESISTANCE------ 3
THROWN--------- 0
WAR-------------- 0


LIFE
CRAFT------------- 0
LARCENY---------- 0
LINGUISTICS------ 4
PERFORMANCE--- 0
PRESENCE-------- 4
RIDE-------------- 0
SAIL--------------- 0
SOCIALIZE-------- 0
STEALTH---------- 0
SURVIVAL--------- 0



WISDOM
BUREAUCRACY--- 0
INVESTIGATION---- 0
LORE----------- 0
MEDICINE------ 0
OCCULT-------- 0

SPECIALTIES
Showing Off (Martial Arts)
Acute Hearing (Awareness)
Threats (Presence)
Acrobatics (Athletics)
When Unarmed (Dodge)



YOUR LIFE



PERSONALITY
Terse, and slightly quiet, owing much to her long time spent in solitude. Due to a sense of duty, she finds it difficult to run from a fight, especially when others are at risk. After losing close friends, she's a bit of a loner and unwilling to get close to anyone. Since living alone most of her life, Astrid has become overtly strong-willed, unable to compromise, and sometimes entirely thoughtless.

Motivation(s)
    Battle
    Good Food
    Worthy Enemies
    Defending the Weak
    Smiting Evil
    A good drink
    Her Tribe

VIRTUES
COMPASSION: 1
TEMPERANCE: 1
CONVICTION: 4
VALOR: 4

LIMIT BREAK
You die and I live
Life on her own has had it's impact, everyone she get's close to seems to die while she seems unable to be bested. Since she "can't die" Astrid becomes absolutely bull-headed, refusing to listen to others and following her own plans to completion regardless of the cost. Uncompromising is an understatement as she is unwilling to adapt on the fly to even matters that would be potentially deadly. Perhaps the young lady secretly harbors a death wish, or perhaps she is merely overly confident in her skills. Once she cracks, however, nothing can dissuade her from her task.

MERITS
Double-Jointed: Exalted with this merit are uncanny contortionists, able to maintain a perfect split indefinitely, bend each finger to the wrist, kick their legs straight up, or even dislocate and reset joints painlessly. This means escaping grapples and most restraints is child's play for these Exalted
Omnidexterous: The Exalted is able to use either hand or feet as readily as one would their dominant hand. Theoretically the Exalted could wield four weapons or tool in this way, though matters of balance and common sense still apply.
Acute Senses: This Exalted has hearing of preternatural acuity, able to navigate entirely by pitch and reflection of echoes

FLAWS
Chimera: Lunars with this flaw have forsook their original Totem animal, and as such that form is a hybrid of both creatures. This leads other Lunars to distrust them, as they appear to be falling to the Chimera.
Barbarian: Growing up in the wild has rendered Astrid illiterate, civilized society tends to stay away from her and her brusque attitude
Beacon of Power: This Exalted possesses only one Essence pool, which is both pools combined. Every activation of motes brings out her Anima Banner.



PHYSICAL APPEARANCE
Image


Long raven hair, that extends almost down to her feet, an arm that is entirely obsidian colored, and eyes of amber. Normally she dresses simply, forgoing the armored shell of a knight for the grace of a huntress. Rarely does her obsidian colored arm get shown, as she wraps it in bandages to hide the deformity. After the Exaltation, she began to carry herself like a predator, mimicking their posture and gait. Her tell manifests in tiger's fangs and a sandpaper tongue. Thanks to the Nightwitches, a cascade of runic silvery tattoos adorns her skin, marking her as a Lunar and denoting her various victories and losses.

BACKGROUND

Astrid's father was killed by bandits before she was born, and her mother died in childbirth. For a time she was raised in an orphanage, until a kind and burly man adopted her. That man happened to be a nomadic Barbarian named Lem, who's own wife and children were stolen by the Fair folk. He taught Astrid everything he knew about fighting. They traveled the lands, doing what they could to stem the tide of growing evil throughout the land.

While trying to hunt down a sect of the Cult of the Darkness's Unseeing Eye that had been stealing children, Astrid's adoptive father met his end. In a rage, Astrid attempted to get revenge for her father immediately, even though she was already wounded, surrounded, and heavily outnumbered. Screaming her throat raw, she threw herself at the cultists. For every blow they landed she landed six more, rage fueling her onslaught. It was then that she was chosen as one of Luna's Beloved, one of the tri-fold aspects of Luna, the Warrior Queen, impressed with Astrid's skill and vigor, appeared before her and gifted the girl with Exaltation. The Cultists no longer stood a chance, and once the slaughter was over she cremated her father, as was his custom.

She continued to wander the lands, lost and without a cause besides spreading her father's ashes slowly over the Earth he loved to travel. It wasn't long before rumors of a shape-changing woman spreading ashes around Creation caught the Silver Pact's ear. The Lunar Sorcerers found shortly after, putting her through the trials that were customary. With newfound purpose, she undertook these trials set before her by others like her. Upon graduation, they deemed her a Full-Moon, one of the warriors of the Luna. At the time she was still a young teen, but she set out the moment her mentor deemed her ready; determined to effect change.

Continuing to wander, but now searching for stronger and more powerful evils, Astrid continued her father's legacy; growing into a fine combatant along the way. Many nights were spent hunting animals in their own skin. In civilized societies, people tended to treat her with distaste, due much to her barbaric nature. She never made many friends, preferring a life of solitude to that of a socialite.

People die, especially when their line of work is hunting Deathknights; with that in mind, Astrid found herself unwilling to befriend others, even though her good looks caused many to try. For a short time she even hunted with a group of other Lunars, though this didn't last long as her brash and bull-headed attitude scared away the few that tried. The only one that stayed was a No-Moon named Mila, that Astrid grew exceedingly close to. They hunted together, slept together, and traveled Creation as partners.

One day, the two bit off more than they could chew. It was only supposed to be a single Deathknight, one that was living off a pittance and terrorizing a village. However what they DID find, two Deathknights working in concert, and that had amassed an army. They tried to run, using essence to flee, but Astrid was caught and certain to die. Mila turned back to save her, managing to free Astrid but at the cost of her life. Knowing death was certain and refusing to let Mila's sacrifice be in vain, Astrid fled, in tears. She has no clue how far she ran, but she found herself in an entirely new land.

In her new land, she finally made a home for herself, accidentally declaring herself de facto Goddess of a small tribe. Though she never grew particularly close to anyone, she did learn to love the people living in her village. She protected each of them like a mother bear, tearing through anyone who dared threaten their peace. Her heart still cried for her adoptive father and her now dead partner, but the villagers still needed her. Luna had ensured that she would live for this purpose. Passing Exalted sometimes lauded over her prowess, but since Mila's death she refused to join any of them.

Becoming chief of the village gave her life a new sense of purpose, and from there a fire sprang up in the girl. The tribe as a whole became her new family, one that could potentially outlive even her.




MAGIC, GEAR AND TALENTS

Essence score: 3
Health: 8/8 (10/10 in Beastman form)
Willpower pool: 8/8




Essence motes
Essence Pool: Personal: N/A (half your willpower+your essence score+1) Peripheral: 28 (your full willpower + (essence score X 4))


CHARMS
7/7 Charms

1. First Dexterity Excellency (Dexterity 1 1M/Tick Duration: Instant) Some Lunar Exalted excel at using their natural talents. The Exalt’s player can invoke this Charm when making a roll based on the relevant Attribute. This Charm adds one die to that roll per mote spent. This Charm is the most common source of dice added to rolls; no combination of Charms can add more than (Attribute) dice to the roll. This Charm can also enhance unrolled uses of the relevant Attribute. Common examples of this are increasing Defense Values with the Dexterity Excellency, climbing the Feat of Strength chart with the Strength Excellency or increasing alcohol Tolerance with the Stamina Excellency. When enhancing a static value, each success rolled with dice from this Excellency increases the effective relevant Attribute by two for an instant. Thus, one success increases Defense Value by one. This Excellency, other Excellencies and other dice-adding Charms cannot “create” actions. They may supplement existing actions or increase static values that are already in use. Each Charm use also functions only for a single instant or task—the Charm supplements a single attack or defense but must be activated multiple times for multiple attacks or defenses, even on the same tick.
2. Eye of the Cat: (Perception 4 1M Duration: One Scene) Stewards can see the impossible. The character automatically notices anything within eyeshot, earshot or scent range that is not currently a valid target for a Perception roll based on one of those senses. If it denies the Lunar’s player any roll whatsoever to notice or detect something, the Lunar sees it perfectly. This includes immaterial beings such as gods and demons. It also covers targets so perfectly invisible, scentless or silent that there is no chance for a Perception roll. Against targets that the character could notice, even if the possibility is slight, this Charm provides no benefit. Add the Lunar’s (Essence) in automatic successes when another Charm contests this effect. Activating this Charm in conjunction with Relentless Lunar Fury provides its benefits for the duration.
3. Deadly Beastman Transformation: (Charisma 2 2M Duration: Indefinite) - Resilience of Nature/Horrifying Might +2 Stamina, +1 Dexterity, +4 Strength The Lunar assumes a hybrid form of her Totem Animal and herself, a veritable 'Warform' which becomes one of her True Forms. She also gains certain gifts and increased attributes. Resilience of nature gift allow the Exalted to heal from wounds almost instantly, this effect continues even when unconscious making the Exalted hard to kill. The second gift adds an additional +2 attribute points (+2 Strength, already taken into account above)
4. Sense Sharpening Change: (1M per Tick Perception 2 Duration: One Scene) Using this Charm, the Lunar can heighten all of his senses far beyond that. His ears grow to better hear sounds, eyes grow and dilate to enhance sight, and nostrils flare to better pick up scents. She can even taste individual ingredients in a meal, or feel the slightest wind on her skin. She may not spend more Motes on this then she has perception
5. God-Cutting Essence: (Perception 4 1M Duration: Instant Prerequisite: Eye of the Cat) Luna imbued her Chosen to overthrow the oppressors of Creation. With her supernal perceptive abilities, the Steward knows exactly where to channel her Essence in order to disrupt even an immaterial spirit. This Charm supplements any attack, allowing it to harm immaterial spirits and inflict aggravated damage against them.
6. Deadly Beastman Transformation 2: (Charisma 2 2M Duration: Indefinite Prerequisites: Can only take once per Essence score) - Wound-Knitting Power +1 Dex +1 Strength. This gift allows the Exalted to heal from deadly wounds almost instantly, this effect continues even while the Exalted is unconscious, making her extremely hard to kill. (Total stat adjustment: +2 Stamina, +2 Dexterity, +5 Strength)
7. Blood on the Wind: (Perception 3 2M/1WP Duration: Indefinite) - The Exalted becomes unable to lose a target, across hard stone, white-water rapids and through the most overpowering opium dens or raging firestorms, the Lunar does not lose the trail. When making a tracking roll she need only roll a single success to follow any mundane prey. If the Exalted has tasted the target's blood, even Charms are ineffective at hiding from the Exalted. Furthermore, if the Lunar is in Beastman Form she is considered a Supernatural Tracker, can track any mortal target, and has a number of automatic successes in contests against other supernatural trackers equal to her essence rating.

COMBOS

!!!!!BONUS POINTS!!!!!
10/10 Used (6 on Essence Rank, 3 to Physical stats, 1 on Valor)

PREFERRED FIGHTING STYLE

Beastman Rending
Spears thrown from the foot
Tri/Dual-wielding axes
Aiki-jūjutsu

LANGUAGES KNOWN

High Realm
SkyTongue
RiverSpeak
Northern Barbarian Dialect (Common enough to speak a few)
ForestTongue

EQUIPMENT AND POSSESSIONS

Two sets of tattered clothes

Two sets of Metal Gauntlets and Greaves

Three Axes

Two Spears

Two Cold Iron Spears

Eight Pine Resin Bombs

Eight Lamp-oil Bombs

Various ribbons

Eight leather belts

A large rucksack

Portrait of Lem and Astrid

Three Waterskins

Two Whetstones

A large metal shield

Image

So begins...

Astrid Grünewald's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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#, as written by Sepokku
It was a little slower than the Huntress would have liked, especially as the scent would at times change directions entirely, which required more complex directions than 'left or right.' However, they were close enough now, so close that the scent of them lingered in the air. Now... It was up to the others to close the gap without arousing suspicion, a notion that caused her to involuntarily tighten around Nagasani's arm.

"L-lady Astrid," Her words brought Astrid out of her thoughts, uncoiling slightly to allow for blood flow to return to the handmaiden's arm. They entered the shrine devoted to the Incarnae, the snake that was Astrid seemed confident that their quarry lie just a ways beyond, however... The real question was what would happen once they found the duo and the Lunar Chieftain surged into motion. Things had gone far enough earlier, which is why they were in this precarious position, and should things get much worse, the situation may become unrecoverable.

Writhing with anticipation, a foreign sensation of scales on skin for her current mode of transportation, Astrid could barely keep herself contained as her quarry appeared before her. Patience yet, she wasn't quite within striking distance, and the plan required a cool head, just like all the quiet hours stalking a blood quarry. Soon, the culmination of her plans would come to fruition and she would taste the sweet fruits of a successful hunt, all that was left was to wait.

The Solar and Lunar duo came into sight, exchanging words as they wandered down the luxurious corridors of the palace, Nagasani approached the two slowly, calling out once she saw them, "Princess Lordes, Sir Ashen Sky; We offer our deepest apologies that this situation has escalated into the uncomfortable situation that it is." Even though her words were genuine, they felt weird to say with Astrid yet to act... The rest of the quintet bowed deeply, apologizing for their immaturity in unison. Involuntarily, the head handmaiden tensed, expecting something from Astrid, but she was entirely still for the first time since crawling into her sleeve. Uncertain, she turned to give Lux a pleading look, hoping that the still not entirely sober Terrestrial could better salvage the situation.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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The Lunar and Solar were talking between themselves as they wandered, and Lux only managed to discern the last sentence that Calliope had spoken as she approached the duo with Nāgasāni and a still concealed Astrid. The princess had been speaking of her mother—a formidable warrior...? Yep. Lux could definitely envision someone like that being Calliope’s mother.... She was probably as pink as Calliope was, and as lovely as well.

....she could never be sure if she’d actually known her own parents or not.

She didn’t oft consider the subject, her mind usually otherwise occupied. However, with her better sense still muddled by intoxication, a thought bubbled to the surface, a tiny one that made the Fire Aspect start to nibble on the side of her hand and make her eyes glassy. Her parents...perhaps she knew them, but she could never know for sure. Whatever the truth, more than likely Lux knew that her parents were long deceased. Whether she was born to the bandits who “raised” her or she was brought into their circle through other means, those who she’d call her parents very likely no longer drew breath.

More than a few times she’d heard other people discuss their parents and family—either bitterly, or happily, or somewhere in-between. That was something she could never do in any capacity. The absolute closest thing Lux had to “family” was Vered, who, even at her most affectionate, was distant and impersonal toward Lux. Those could chat about their family, even bitterly, were fortunate, in a sense. At least they knew....

Lux stood by, quietly as Nāgasāni offered up a most genuine apology to Ashen and Calliope, her green eyes distant and expression vacant as her foggy mind filled with acrid thoughts once again. The longer they were in there, the more they burned and stung. The grip that Lux had on the bunched up bundle of fabric in her arms tightened, and the pace of her breathing seemed to increase.

So out of it was she, that she missed Nāgasāni looking her way following her apology...Lux said nothing and simply continued to ruminate, too easily consumed by her thoughts.

As moments of silence turned into seconds, and Lux still did not seem as if she was going to respond in any manner, Nāgasāni found herself growing concerned. The Terrestrial had seemed to slip into some kind of momentary state of melancholy before, but had perked up rather swiftly...? Perhaps, it was happening again? The young woman was still rather intoxicated, and it seemed as if she was inexperienced with alcohol in any capacity.... Likely, that Golden Rhapsody she’d rapidly consumed in the baths was affecting her hard and making her far more emotional then she was when sober. Chances were that even the most passing emotion or sentiment was magnified for her, meaning she was overly quick to both laughter and tears.

What, exactly, was bringing Lux to near tears at the moment, Nāgasāni hadn’t the faintest idea. The handmaiden had been hoping that Lux would, or could, help to lessen the awkwardness of the whole situation.... Apparently, that was not going to be the case, as she seemed utterly lost within herself. Perplexed, Nāgasāni stood herself back up straight, being mindful of the unmoving serpentine Astrid that was coiled around her forearm. Whatever the Lunar Chieftain had planned for Calliope and Ashen, she’d yet to put into action—perhaps the situation was not quite right to do so yet.

The head handmaiden looked upon the duo, wordlessly apologizing yet again, before she attempted to edge closer to Lux in order to determine what was upsetting her so, before...said Terrestrial’s shoulders shuddered and she let out a strained noise that made Nāgasāni jump a bit from its abruptness. And before she could say or do anything to amend the situation, Lux was sniffling and mindlessly rubbing at her eyes, a raw, angry spot having formed along the area of her hand where she’d been nibbling on it.

Flabbergasted, “L-Lay Lux?” was all Nāgasāni could manage out at the moment. She reached her hand out in Lux’s direction before retracting it, remembering Astrid’s presence.

A soft sigh emerged from Lux, as she wiped at her eyes. “S’rry, didn’t mean t’cry.... Just...thinkin’ ‘bout m’parents....”

Being Fakharu’s handmaiden, Nāgasāni knew a bit about Lux...but there were also many things about the girl that were a mystery. One of those things regarded the girl’s parentage. Given Lux’s tears, Nāgasāni could only surmise that she either very much missed her parents or...tragedy. A soft and easy smile formed over Nāgasāni’s features and she beckoned Lux over to her. Still sniffling, Lux heeded the handmaiden’s silent gesture. The handmaid merely set a hand atop the small girl’s head, whilst keeping close to her the one that bore Astrid.

“My dear Lady Lux, it is all right to cry.” she comforted the girl, “I believe you’re just...perhaps a tad more emotional than you would usually be, courtesy of the alcohol you consumed earlier.”

Swallowing back a pitiful hiccup, Lux could not bring herself to meet Nāgasāni’s eyes, as she nodded along in agreement, the thoughts dragging her down slipping back into the fog of her mind. Her nose was red and irritated now, while her eyes were puffy. “Y-Yeah, s’probaly...that....” the Terrestrial sniffled rather loudly this time, trying to clear her head and the tears. “S’just the alco’ol...don’t thin’ I’ll be hav’ng more for a’while....”

Nagasani giggled gently, “I do believe it would be best if you did not...indulge with such gusto again anytime soon.”

A small pout formed on Lux’s face, making the girl look much like a child again. “But...I d’have fun....” she sighed, “The bath w’ you and As’rid was fun! The pr’tty dresses were...fun! Fun, fun, fun....” And as quick as the girl had cried before, she was already smiling again, brightly, as she thought of pretty dresses and other fun things. It was definitely the remnants of her intoxication making her so very...emotive....

Nāgasāni cleared her throat, and turned her gaze back upon Calliope and Ashen.... Who knew what they were thinking of the situation.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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#, as written by Wake
As Calliope described her home and family Ashen listened earnestly and with no small amount of curiosity. But when she mentioned the monarchy and her mothers word, he had to resist a disquieted look crossing his features. "Tha sounds.... interestin'." He said noncommittally. While Ashen knew that the rest of creation had didn't hold to the same 'customs' as the west, but from the sound of it Calliopes home seemed to have a more... antithetical view to what Ahsen had been raised on. A view his master had recently tried to teach the young lunar a 'lesson' about prior to his departure to Fakharu's spire.

He was almost glad for the interruption by the arrival of Lux and the handmaidens before he could say something that put his metaphorical foot in his mouth. Nagasani made her apology to the both of them and the group bowed. Ashen merely grinned and waged his tail. "It be na ah bother miss, least na fer me." He briefly remembered that he'd promised to keep Calliope away from the handmaidens if they came for her again, but they honestly didn't seem to hold any ill intent. He looked to the solar in his arms. "Well, what ya think yer highness? All forgiven?"

It was about that point though that he noticed Lux looking a little woozy in the back. And... teary eyed? Ashen's upper ears went flat against his head in worry. Nagasani seemed to notice as well as she immediately went to comfort the silently crying girl. A quick confession from her confirmed Ashen's own suspicions that she was drunk, and the alcohol was making her somewhat emotional. Very gently he set the princess down on her feet and approached the inebriated terrestrial and handmaiden just as Lux seemed to swing back towards smiles again. "Geez, 'ow much did ya let tha poor girl drink?" Despite the concern in his voice Ashen's kept his an amused grin on his face. He crouched down slightly to be more at eye level with Lux. "Well glad ye had fun me dear. Maybe ye can tell us 'bout it all while we walk ye back 'fore any more foolishness 'appens, aye?" Atop his head Ashen's upper ears willed and flicked upright, as he tried to keep her focus away from what had caused her earlier emotional downturn.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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Nāgasāni removed her hand from atop Lux’s head, but set it upon the girl’s shoulder, keeping her somewhat close at hand, in case she suddenly became overly emotional again. Indeed, it seemed like quite a possibility.... The Terrestrial’s emotion were terribly fragile at the moment, and it seemed that even the smallest thing could cause her mood to shift with near no warning. Certainly, she was quite emotive earlier in the day, when she first arrived on Fakharu’s Island, but she at least seemed to be in relative control. Unless...that was something of a façade, which was entirely possible. Perhaps Lux merely acted in control of herself because she felt like she had to, and her current state was closer to her true self.... Or, maybe it was her true self.

Alcohol did indeed sometimes make folks reveal the truest forms of themselves....

When Ashen commented, in jest, about how much Lux had been allowed to drink, Nāgasāni turned her gaze upon the Lunar. Her face revealing none of her thoughts or speculations regarding the Dragon-Blooded next to her. She spoke, her voice calm and even, “I can assure you, Sir Ashen, that we did not force Lady Lux to ingest anymore drink then she was comfortable with.... She seemed quite ready and willing to join myself and Lady Astrid in partaking.”

As if rehearsed, a small hiccup slipped up from Lux’s diaphragm, “Mhm, yep...was m’choice....” she gave a small smile before...well, her squirrelly attention span once more ran its course. She didn’t even hear what Ashen said to her, as he came to be eye-to-eye with her...no, the only thoughts that were on Lux’s mind concerned the Lunar’s...ears. They’d distracted her before—she had a love for animals, after all. And normally, Lux would have the decency and self-restraint to not do what she was about to.... However, impulse and curiosity overtook the young girl and with no thought given, she reach out and gently grabbed one of his upright ears, before she giddily giggled to herself and started to rub it in much the same way as she would do with a dog or a cat....

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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#, as written by Wake
Ashen had certainly not been expecting Lux to grab his ears. The second she did Ashen felt a slight jolt run down his spine and the lunar's body tense very suddenly, inadvertently letting out a small and rather unmanly squeak. Ashen didn't normally let people touch his ears for a very particular reason and his usual recourse would be to swat away anyone who tried. But with the princess still in his arms the matter was complicated.

"Ah, Lux," He started, already his voice starting to warble a bit. " Me ears be a we bit sensitive. So could.. ye please... staaaaaaa... " His voice trailed off and a second later he fell to one knee, and the rational side of his mind noted that it might be to late as a pleasant warmth started to build in the base of his skull and wash down his neck. Ashen's ears were infact sensitive to touch, so much so that they tended to cause an extensive Endorphin rush, leaving the changing moon on a particularly strong high. And the drunken terrestrial's tender ministrations was triggering that rush in a rather powerful way. A second later his eyes diluted, and he in inadvertently dropped Calliope when he loss strength in his arms.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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#, as written by Sepokku
Patience had never been Astrid’s strong suit, she had always been a lady of action, and biding her time was always a last resort. However, what came next was something she needed to do, in order to establish how this temporary pack was going to work. Perhaps she’d forgotten herself slightly earlier, admist the stress and drink. That was to be remedied now, however.

Flicking her tongue with anticipation as her fellow Lunar approached, now was the time to act. With a shimmer of essence, flooding her form and veins, Astrid darted forward, uncoiling from Nagasani’s hand to lunge at her fellow Lunar’s leg. All the while, resuming Beastwoman form once more, with a sweep of her hand, Ashen Sky’s leg was yanked out from under him.

Continuing the momentum, and with a twitch of her tail, she threw the Lunar over the balcony, into the awaiting fountain of water. Dusting off her hands, as if having finished a very difficult job, she admonished him with a motherly tone. ”A pup in heat, should take a bath to cool off.”

With a slightly pleased look Astrid turned to the Solar, resuming human form with a glitter of anima and pressing her right fist across her heart. ”I’m very sorry for earlier Princess.” With a gesture towards Nagasani and the warmest smile she could muster, her words continued ”Miss Nagasani here will take you somewhere to change where you’re comfortable?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes Character Portrait: Nimin "Zeri" Hedrox Character Portrait: Mirror Leih Regium Vertarria

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#, as written by Wake
The water of the fountain swashed and spilled over the side as the pirate flailed about inside of it. Muscle control, lossed in due to the lingering euphoric sensation of having his ears rubbed, eluded him for a brief if slightly terrifying series of seconds as he swallowed crystal clear water and tried to right himself before he drowned. Finally Ashen surfaced, sputtering liquid and curses both with equal virulence as he wheezed for air.

"Tha bleedin' 'ell Astrid!"The changing moon coughed. "Tha 'ell was tha for?!" He sat up in the fountain, now thoroughly drenched from head to toe. The waterlogged clothes clung to his body, and if he had presence of mind he would have been reminded of Lux's own plunge into a similar water decoration that ultimately set this whole fiasco into motion. He began wringing out the white shirt that now hung tightly to his chest and muttered curses at Astrid, handmaidens, Astrid, Dragons, stupid quest, and Astrid.

This series of venomous mutterings ceased when he heard someone directly above him clear their throat. Ashen paused mid squeeze to look up at the emerald green form of the earth elemental, Burnished Mantis. The insectiod chamberlain, despite not having any tongue or lips, made a small clicking sound with his mouth in dull surprise. "Well, I see your group seems to have developed a fondness for our water works, but I must request from now on that our guest stay out of the fountains for the duration of your visit."

While Ashen's face flushed red with embarrassment, the chamberlain tilted his head upwards to look at the balcony above where the other three exalts and an increasingly mortified by the second looking quintet of handmaidens stared back down at him. "Now if all of you gentlewomen are done disrupting the peace of the lords halls, streaking about the palace in drunken stupors and generally making complete fools of yourselves in the Censors name!" The sharp raising of his voice caused the quintet to flinch. "I have the item that Lady Astird requested, and a message from Lord Fakharu. An additional number of exalts will be joining you for this errand. The lord shall introduce you at the docks. If you ladies would kind clean yourselves up and make your way there, it would be most appreciated."




At that same time, another boat pulled into port at the same dock as the first ship landed. This one crewed by actual humans. At it's bow the captain, a man with god-blooded linage by the name of Steel-Sun, frowned as the vessel came into mooring. He was already unhappy that he had been sidelined for the rescue of Lady Amarel he had even further frustrated with being given the task of ferrying a few of the late additions to the actual expedition for her retrieval. He had kept his comments to himself though, even if he struggled to keep his distaste from his expression, and turned back to the passengers aboard the deck. "As promised, we have arrived. His lordship and the rest of your party should meet you here soon."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes Character Portrait: Nimin "Zeri" Hedrox Character Portrait: Mirror Leih Regium Vertarria

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#, as written by Sepokku
Though it was immensely satisfying to toss Ashen over the balcony after the frustration of losing Calliope, the sudden appearance of Burnished Mantis reminded Astrid why she was here. With a deft leap the lunar chieftain threw herself over the balcony, catching herself on the railing with her feet, so that she swung to the lower level, landing beside the Mantis spirit on all four. "Of course Emerald One, we're headed there, now that we're not waiting on you."


After retrieving the item from the Mantis Spirit, Astrid resumed her human form once more and swiftly made her way to the docks, testing the mechanism on her newly-equipped grieves and gauntlets as she ran. It felt strange to rely on more traditional weaponry, rather than what Luna had gifted her or Lem had trained her with. However the equipment was well-made and responded to her needs as well as could be hoped.

Exactly what kinds of people the new Exalts would be tolled heavily on Astrid's mind. It would be odd for it to be more Lunars, it was rare for more than two of them to appear in one place without prior notice, and that had already happened. Though the Censor's summon wasn't really normal. As long as it wasn't more Abyssals, she couldn't really complain though. Members of the Wyld Hunt might be problematic also, but she doubted they'd be plucky enough to make trouble on the Censor's home turf.

The docks came into sight, a busy ferry seemed to have arrived not long before, and was bustling with port activity. Finding a spot a ways above the ship, with ample view of the port, the Lunar watched and waited. If the newly arrived Exalts were treated at all like her group had been, they wouldn't be difficult to make out from this vantage point. If they were particularly observant, it wouldn't be hard to see the unusually lithe woman perched on a nearby building.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes Character Portrait: Nimin "Zeri" Hedrox Character Portrait: Mirror Leih Regium Vertarria

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#, as written by Oborosen
The last of the salty sea air drew up over the docks as Nimin looked down across the pier, a new load of the ships in sight pulling in. With a small sigh of relief being breathed as he took another puff from his pipe as the winds pulled it up and away.
The last few days of waiting had been tedious to say the least for the particular solar. He'd spent only a few days in the last port on his way in from being summoned. Having done nothing but ply his skills up the coast before the summons arrived. The request still fresh in his mind, just as the last pang of tobacco swats at the tip of his tongue and he withdraws the pipe, the lone table which he sat at was about done with him.

He dropped a few coins on the table to pay for his meal. Something that had long since gone from the world, though using the table was well enough a reason to keep his place and as he knocked the last of his pipes ash loose. He stood and approached the pier. This was a new day for him. After traveling alone for so long, he'd already been wondering what kind of new faces he'd get to meet and new kinds of people he'd get to treat. Other exalted always offered new challenges and this day he'd get his chance to see all the new faces he could handle.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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#, as written by Castle
Ashen’s grasp on her loosened, and Calliope flopped to the ground. She sat there stunned at first, looking up at the pair. The terrestrial was... caressing Ashen? And as a result, Ashen was incapacitated. She began crawling, in a military style, out from under Lux and her new Lunar friend. Once she was clear, Calliope rolled over and propped herself on her elbows. The princess picked a piece of long, white hair out of her mouth, staring up at the display in annoyance. She sighed and rose to her feet, but before she could even turn to walk away, Astrid snatched Ashen by the leg and threw him over the edge.

Calliope gasped. Splash. She lunged to the edge of the balcony and peered down at the fountain. Ashen bobbed to the surface. He was fine. Calliope turned around, nonchalantly, her gaze cast downward as not to draw any attention to herself. How much attention could a naked, pink Gladan attract? She began to walk forward, but came to halt when she realized she was face to face with Astrid. Calliope took a step back, but as Astrid was no longer in her beast shape, Calliope was able to relax. She was still alert, but relaxed.

”I’m very sorry for earlier Princess.” Astrid smiled creepily. “Miss Nāgasāni here will take you somewhere to change where you’re comfortable?”

Calliope corrected her posture, her chin upturned in a prideful manner.

“Yes,” she said confidently. “That will suffice.” Calliope carried on, walking past Astrid, unaffected. She joined Nāgasāni, and the two of them left the corridor together silently.m

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes

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#, as written by Jakuri-chan
Throughout the bulk of the shenanigans, Lux was quiet, but giggled to herself, unable to stop. She hadn’t been expecting any of what occurred...Burnished Mantis’ comment was funny. They were making fools of themselves, weren’t they? Oh, well if they were.... They were! Things would be okay; they were all going to go on this mission together and were going to come back successful. Amarel would be saved, one way or another. Whilst Calliope wandered off with Nāgasāni to get into proper dress again, Lux watched, not having moved from where she’d been standing. Right...Burnished Mantis wanted “all the ladies” to get cleaned up before departure...and there were more Exalted to greet.... Huh, “all the ladies?”

....odd wording. But, that was neither here nor there!

Oh, more people to meet...more people for their journey. She did need to get cleaned up, didn’t she…? She didn’t have shoes on anymore since she’d kicked them off earlier when she was trying to give chase to Calliope.... Lux’s giggle fit had since ceased as she mindlessly started to nibble upon the knuckle of her thumb, avoiding her nails since they were still polished. Her expression was vacant and she was unmoving, seemingly lost in some kind of daze as her mind blanked to the goings-on around her. Certainly, her mind had cleared a bit from its utterly drunken stupor, but she was still rather impaired....

It wasn’t til Lux heard someone clear their throat, more than once, that she returned to awareness. Lux blinked a few times, removing her knuckle from her lips, seeing one of the handmaidens approaching her. Miss Vengalu, specifically. “Lady Lux...perhaps we should take a page from Calliope’s book, and get you back into your adventuring clothes…?”

Her adventuring...oh, right! She was still in that pretty dress of hers.... Lux very well couldn’t go save Amarel in such a pretty dress, lest she ruin it. The little, tipsy Fire Aspect let out a goofy laugh, and nodded in agreement. “ S’probably a good idea! Let’s...do that!” she half-bellowed in response.

Lux’s apparent eagerness at getting changed caused the rather serious Vengalu to crack a small smile...before she silently held out a hand to the girl, that Lux took without hesitation, following the handmaid.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ashen Sky Character Portrait: Astrid Grünewald Character Portrait: Lux Fiala Character Portrait: Calliope Lordes Character Portrait: Mirror Leih Regium Vertarria

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Riding upon the shoulder of Clove, Mirror noticed a group of people who seemed familiar with each other. Perhaps she could learn something about the surrounding area from them. Perhaps she could even find allies. With a gesture, Mirror had Clove put her down. It would be hard to seem... Normal riding upon the shoulder of a Golem. The rock held his hand out for Mirror to step on and gently lowered her to the ground until she could walk off. “I need you to stay hidden for just a bit. You can watch from a distance.” She whispered to him. Worry swept upon the stone creature's face. Mirror gave him a gentle pat. “Thank you for your concern. I will proceed with caution. You can come to my side if things don't go well.”

Before approaching them, Mirror strained to see what they were doing. Upon closer inspection, one of the strangers was soaking wet. One of the others seemed fairly amused by the situation. The young princess drew near them with caution. If there was one thing that she had learned in life, it was that there are many foes in the world. She needed to discover whether they were followers of the Immaculate Order or not.

Unfortunately Mirror had no idea where she was. Geography was never a strong suit for her. After wandering for so long she could be anywhere. She knew she was by some docks but that was about it. Perhaps that would be a good ice breaker. She waited for everyone to finish talking the best she could before speaking. “Excuse me. I'm sorry to bother all of you. I seem to be a little bit lost. Where am I right now?”