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Thorns Within the Rose

Korratoth

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a part of Thorns Within the Rose, by angelwolfchild.

The dark kingdom newly invaded by the Lord.

angelwolfchild holds sovereignty over Korratoth, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

879 readers have been here.

Setting

Default Location for Thorns Within the Rose
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Korratoth

The dark kingdom newly invaded by the Lord.

Minimap

Korratoth is a part of Thorns Within the Rose.

14 Characters Here

Aethyra [91] "How I despise these walls."
Alain Rolands [80] "Talk about wrong place, wrong time. What have I gotten myself into?"
Parthenia "Paige" Daphine [62] "Beauty only counts if it's inside and out."
Trifect Quaizon [29] "Allow me to guide you. I have nothing but The Kingdom's best interest at Heart."
Alaizabel [27] "I've suffered terribly, you should cry for me... you should cry your eyes out."
Daniel Alaric [18] "For the glory of the Kingdom, of course..."
Leon Gideon Delrin [8] "I'll do whatever it takes to keep this kingdom from falling"
Leon Graves [6] "This kingdom is mine. Cross me and I will not hesitate to make sure you're never seen around it again."
Anastasia [5] "In the name of Winter!"
Selphie Almsgrave [5] "Wish somebody would cause a problem so I could shove my sword down their throat."

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Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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Alaizabel had been enjoying how distracted the two of them were by her little 'messages'.
The rogue. He was more receptive at first, she could almost see the cogs in his head turning at the ideas she had planted inside of there. It didn't take much to turn his head... that would be useful.
The princess herself was a little more scepticle, the connection made between her and the darkness was too thin at the moment but she was still drawn to the idea. Once her power was back, Alaizabel would be able to exploit this completely and enjoy her revenge.
She was about to send another little message to the man (Alain had he been called?) when a sudden overwhelming sense nearly broke her concentration.
It was... pure. Pure innocence!
Her eyes slid over to the servant who had come in... how was this possible? In all her time she had never come across a human that could hold such purity, it had to be more than just her. And this had to be the girl that Trifect had mentioned, she could see why he had suggested her as a way to recover. She really would be a powerful source of nourishment.
Speak of the devil, the man himself walked in.
It was rather amusing seeing how the princess spoke to him, if only she knew what her dear Chancellor was capable of. But she could not waste anymore time, she needed Parthenia's heart.
There are shadows all over this castle... show me where Parthenia has been.
For a moment she took in the scenes that the shadow showed her before picking out the details she needed.
Alaizabel gritted her teeth, pulling every ounce of magic from her body so that she could pull off this trick. Releasing a deep breath, she stepped into the empty corridor outside, her appearance now exactly like one of the other servants that had been present at the birth.
"Showtime." She murmured, knowing the girl wouldn't resist this trick.
In the servant disguise, she rushed into the room, nearly bumping into Trifect as she hastily curtseyed to the others.
"Forgive me sir, my lady, forgive this intrusion..." Her gaze went to Paige with her face full of panic. "Paige, it-its Ms Sleine's baby.... we don't know what happened... there's something wrong... he's struggling to breath..."
The words all came out in a frenzied rush, her eyes full of desperate panic as she spoke to Paige.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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Parthenia cridged at Alain and Trifect's scolding but said nothing, only murmuring a soft "Yes, Sir. I'll do better." in response to both of them and continuing to look at her lap. She didn't beleive no one cared. Aethrya's cared, didn't she? And Mr and Ms Slenie and their new baby cared. Other servants cared and even the Queen had favored her when she still lived. No, Paige held no deep regrets as she liked to serve and knew that someday, somehow, she would be reffered to as Mistress Parthenia, a noble woman and respected lady of the community. Never again a dog- no, she was never a dog! Then there was a snap which pulled her from her thoughts and Trifect said “Her highness wishes for her sister, Setia. Please retrieve her and bring her here.” shortly followed by footsteps running off into the hall. Parthenia didn't look up from her hands as she had no desire to know which servant had been summoned nor the stunned expression they had on their face. Undoubtably it would be the talk of the wash room along with much of the rest of the castle's gossip. And then, as if to stir up more trouble (though Paige would never make such rash accusations) Trifect went on.

“I will not pretend that I knew nothing of your being locked up, in fact I had full knowledge of it. I also knew you were down there, since the day it happened. Of course you do have certain facts mixed up. I never wanted you locked up, I would have much rather employed someone with your unique talents. It’s not often that we see someone with the balls or talent to break into a castle to rip it off. That kind of thing would be quite useful for a man of my stature. After all it’s my duty to know whatever information I can, and someone that could very well blend in as a spy as I’m sure you are capable, well it would be just the person I would love to hire. Alas, the old keepers, as you put it, saw fit to lock you up, leaving us both quite unhappy. Although I must say, I am surprised you hadn’t broken out much sooner then this, let alone allowed yourself to be caught.” He said in a causual and easy mannor as if it were a normal day and he was simply carrying on pleasent conversation.

Paige heard a chair scoot out and creak mildly as it accepted Trifect's weight. His shadow followed his arm which reatched for an apple as the other hand held a goblet of wine. “I don’t believe you will kill me now, I believe Alain was your name, correct? Why don’t I think you’ll kill me? A simple reason. It’s too much of a hassle for you. Having to deal with the fallout from it, poor Paige right here will likely be the one to clean up the mess, need I go on? Plus you are a man of opportunity, yes? I would still like to employ you for jobs that would make use of your talents. All you would have to do is name your price.”

A grimance lingered on Parthenia's face. Not nessassarelly over the idea of having to clean up the blood and gore if they did decided to duel, but at the prospect of what Trifect was doing. Wasn't he the advisor? Shouldn't he have the uttmost respect for the kindgom as well as the best intentions for them? Mocking them did not seem to support his cause. Was he trying to start a fight? Perhaps he knew something the others didn't, like perhaps Alain was intenting to kill them and he was secret revealing his plans. Although this seemed very unlikely as Paige thought about. Unfortunatly she didn't have much time to think as a servant's footsteps entered the room.

"Forgive me sir, my lady, forgive this intrusion..." Parthenia raised her head now, turning around in her chair to face the girl she recognized as Clairibella. Her hair was messier than she normally kept it and her eyes, normally a calm brown, were wild and wet with tears yet to be spilt. "Clair? What are you doing here? What has frightened you so?" Paige said, standing up from her chair and taking a step towards her friend. "Paige, it-its Ms Sleine's baby.... we don't know what happened... there's something wrong... he's struggling to breath..."

Paige gasped, her hand touching her chest lightly in a gesture of alarm, the panic in her voice ringing true. "No! That cannot be!" Paige turned to Aethyra, "Please, please forgive me, but I am needed." Then, with worry, love and determination swirling in her rich sky blue eyes she said, "Quickly Clair, we do not have any time to waste! Show me where Harding is being cared for!"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain raised an eyebrow. A likely story, but any man could come up with kind words when a knife was at their throat, "I stayed where I was because I was interested in this castle, and I was interested in the events which took place in it." He would not speak on his capture. It was no fool's mistake, but rather...he wasn't sure. As he had been taking gold, as quiet as he could and minding the structural quality of the gold pile, the opposite half of the pile decided it was going to slide. An impossible thing, yes, but the noise of the slide was what brought the guards to him, and honestly, it would be easier to lockpick a cell and sneak out, than to fight his way out past guards. So the denizens of the castle had been on the side of luck that day, or something else entirely. This was why he had stayed as long as he had, to find the reason behind the slide; but then of course the castle came to siege, and now here they were. He crossed his own arms as the servant girl scurried out, though once more he felt that twang of fingers on his spine for just a moment. He wasn't seriously letting that little cave get at him, was he? Every person that came in that door wasn't going to give him jitters, eh? What kind of man would he be then?

However, Trifect spoke again, which caused Alain's frown to deepen. Arrogant son of a bitch, wasn't he? He continued to keep his arms crossed, the knife now dangling from his fingers by the blade, "I would prefer my name be spoken less freely as this, if you do not mind. And you would make me laugh, were I not considering to sink a knife in your throat. Why do you imply that I care which dog from this castle cleans the blood from the ground? Is it not their job to clean the floors and such things? It is what they are supposed to do. As for being a man of opportunity, you infer that you provide opportunity. You are the adviser to a castle. The treasury is more in her hands than yours," He pointed briefly at Aethyra before looking back at Trifect, "Yet you intend to have me 'name my price'? What have you to offer that is worth my skill?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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Aethyra grasped Paige's shoulder stiffly, studying the maid who had just rushed in, Clairibella, her name was. Something about her was off, strange, with the same pull that Aethyra had felt before in the dungeon. She did not trust this girl, not one bit.

"Clairibella. You are different, what has happened?" she pushed herself in front of Paige and studied Clair, scrutinizing her closely. She couldn't hold Paige back, no, the poor girl would explode with worry. Turning back to face Paige, her voice dropped to a whisper, "I do not like this, Parthenia, I do not like her. Something is wrong. I want you to be very, very careful. Do not take anything she offers. Go straight only to the baby, and back to me." The heir hurriedly tugged an amulet from her throat and fastened it around Paige's, watching it gleam unnaturally. "It is an enchanted protection charm, I only pray it can help you if something bad is to happen. Something is happening, and I fear it will be after you if we are not careful. I will not lose you, you are one of the only people I would dare call 'friend' in this disgusting place. Please, return swiftly." Grasping her hand for one final moment, she stood to the side and let her rush off to the baby. Then, nursing an aching temple, she turned to the bickering couple at the table, and sat herself across from Alain.

"Are you two thoroughly finished squabbling like old hens? I fear I'll be put off my tea if you continue." She took a pointed sip of tea at the moment, then took a smile nibble of bread, "I did not realize it was my duty to greet you first, Trifect, I thought it was yours to greet me. Hello, Trifect. I hope the morning has treated you well." Annoyance was pouring off her in waves, and she sincerely hoped the men could feel it.

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She sighed and turned into one of the main corridors not really knowing where she planned to go.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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Parthenia was about to follow after Clair with Aethyra's grabbed Paige's shoulder and pulled the girl behind her to Paige's great surprise. "Clairibella. You are different, what has happened?" Paige blinked. Yes it was turn, clair was usually the calmest of the servants and always liked to look neat, but with the life of a new born baby being threatened, who wished towashed time looking pretty? Paige was about to try to reassure Aethyra that all would be well and that time was of the essence, but before the words left her lips, Aethyra's turned to her.

""I do not like this, Parthenia, I do not like her. Something is wrong. I want you to be very, very careful. Do not take anything she offers. Go straight only to the baby, and back to me." Aethyra said, looking Paige dead in the eye before she quickly pulled an amulet from around her throat and fastened it around Paige's before she could react or protest. It sparkled around the girl's neck and Paige fumbled to undo the clasp, knowing that if she were seen wearing Aethyra's jewelery or clothing she would be subjected to immediate execution.

But before she could take it off and give it back, Paige was stunned by Aethyra's words. "It is an enchanted protection charm, I only pray it can help you if something bad is to happen. Something is happening, and I fear it will be after you if we are not careful. I will not lose you, you are one of the only people I would dare call 'friend' in this disgusting place. Please, return swiftly." Something coming after her? What would be coming after her? Why? Paige wanted to ask all these things, but could see the seriousness in Aethyra's eyes and stopped short.

Slowly her hands fell from the chain with held the amulet and back to her sides. A small, comforting smile graced her lips in response to Aethrya's orders. She wasn't going to be the servant who treasured her own life above her Mistress's wishes, throwing away the protective gift because of it's threat. She was going to be the friend who agreed help ease her friend's troubled without reguard to the potential consequences. Paige gave her friend's hand a small, reassuring squeeze. "I will return soon, my Lady." she said, curtsying, before turning to Clairibella. "Lead me to the Slenie's child."

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Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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'Clairibella' wasted no time when Paige finally went with her, wondering why the Princess had been so... suspicious.
My powers must be weaker than I thought, there must be some trace from this disguise... but not for much longer. She thought to herself.
"We moved them to the doctor's quarters but we have to hurry..." Her eyes fell on the princess, brimming with tears and terror. "... no more time can be wasted."
With that she grabbed Paige's hand and ran out of the room, taking her down the corridors in the right direction to the doctors quarters.
For a while they continued down the corridors, occaisionally passing people on the way but nobody stopped them... servants only ran if something needed to be done. But soon there was nobody with them, in one final, abandoned corridor before reaching the doctor's quarters.
Without warning, she turned sharply and pushed Paige roughly into an empty room, quickly shutting the door and flicking her wrist, a coil of shadows locking the door tightly.
Nobody had seen them.
Nobody had heart them.
Nobody even knew they were here.
"You must forgive me for the hysterics..." She murmured gently... before suddenly turning and rushing at Paige, backing her against the wall with one hand across her mouth. "But this is a really desperate situation."
Her other hand wrapped around the charm worn about the girl's neck, pulling it off and looking at it intently. The thing burnt her slightly but she was too weak to care.
"Cute, I never figured the princess to be so... I'm not even sure what the word is." Alaizabel murmured, her eyes turning black as she dropped the charm, the disguise falling away. "This isn't as... elegant as I would have liked it to be. I don't like rushing things like this, especially with such a sweet young girl, but I'm just so... tired at the moment. Oh don't worry my dear, the baby is fine... but I need your help. I need you to make me strong again. Will you do that?"
The hand around Paige's mouth gripped more tightly while her free hand pulled apart the top of her dress. Alaizabel smiled, growing one of her nails into a long talon before slowly and deliberately dragging it across the skin of her chest... right over her heart. The skin split and with a gleeful chuckle, the demon thrust her entire hand into the girl's chest, wrapping it around her heart and giving a tug.
It didn't budge.
Then, slowly but surely, a strange... pure energy began to surge through her veins.
This didn't make sense... she couldn't tear out the heart and yet... the power from it... the sweet... intoxicating power...
"What is this..." She breathed, staring at the girl in front of her as she felt a tingling of power rush through her veins. "What are you..."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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#, as written by Magix
Trifect ignored Alain at first. It seemed a more interesting ‘person’ came in. He could tell it was Alaizabel, but the odd thing was that Aethyra could also sense something wrong. Maybe he had underestimated the relationship with the darkness that girl had. Then again, Alaizabel was very weak compared to her normal self, so maybe she just couldn’t hide the scent of darkness well enough. Once Aethyra gave Paige her protective amulet however, Trifect noticed the perfect opportunity to finally weaken it. Maybe she’d notice it after getting it back, but she couldn’t trace it back to him by that point. Keeping a hand under the table he cast the spell weakening the amulet. It wouldn’t do more then mildly irritate someone now. It was the best he could do, without fully destroying the object. After Alaziabel had taken Paige away, Trifect downed his glass of wine, and threw the apple core on his plate in front of him. He stared at Alain for a moment before finally responding to him.

“Do not pretend to know the inner workings of this kingdom boy. Do you think just anyone can walk into the royal treasury? Finances are a delicate thing. Do you think the Lord more willing to pay for a thief skilled in finding information on our enemies that we can exploit, or a one time payment on the whim of a girl whose family had already failed this kingdom once? I can offer more then you can dream. I don’t believe you to be a fool, don’t prove me wrong.” Trifect pulled his cane out from the chair, and layed it on the table. Casting a small light spell, that he’s used many times before, he teleported one of his wooden canes to him. After all, his disguise required the cane. “That is made of pure silver and gold, although it is hollow inside. It was a gift from many years ago. I offer it to you to put the past behind us, in hopes of future transactions. Is this deal acceptable for you? After all, I would hate to have to fight each other here, I’m sure it would ruin dear Aethyra’s meal, and I would absolutely hate to do that.”

Speaking of Aethyra, he looked at her with a smile. Of course his smile may have looked more creepy then happy. “Fortunately for us both, there is no duty that requires either of us to greet first. I am afraid that in a strictly social gatherings, where there is no set goal, my manners may be flawed. After all, in my role in this kingdom, I make more enemies then friends. That comes with the territory however, and I wouldn’t trade my position with anyone. I will try and remember my manners in this sort of moment in the future.” Trifect cleared his throat and refilled his glass of wine. “Good Morrow Princess Aethyra. My morning has treated me well enough, how about yourself? By your earlier description to the day, I believe that something must have happened, care to share? Perhaps an old man like myself can shed some light on something?”

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Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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"We moved them to the doctor's quarters but we have to hurry! No more time can be wasted." Clair said and the two began to run. They ran for a short time, heading towards the doctor's quarters where poor little Harding was being held. Suddenly, Clair turned on her, shoving Paige into a empty room usually used for storage. Paige emmitted a strangled cry as she fell backwards. "C-Clair! What are you doing?!" Paige asked in a panic as she lept to her feet, confused on the sudden behavoir pattern change in her friend. But when she saw the coils of black, shadowy tendrils blcking the door Paige knew this couldn't possibly be her companion.

"You must forgive me for the hysterics..." The false Clair murmured gently before suddenly she had pinned the poor girl against the wall, covering her mouth so that she couldn't scream. "But this is a really desperate situation." Paige whimpered, her blue eyes wide with fear. She watched helplessly as the false Clair's hand reatched to her neck, pulling the protective amulet off with a resounding *snap*. "Cute, I never figured the princess to be so... I'm not even sure what the word is." The false Clair said, dropping the necklace on the floor and Parthenia watched in horror as it shattered into millions of peices.

"This isn't as... elegant as I would have liked it to be. I don't like rushing things like this, especially with such a sweet young girl, but I'm just so... tired at the moment. Oh don't worry my dear, the baby is fine... but I need your help. I need you to make me strong again. Will you do that?" Paige desperately wanted to shake her head no, to fight back, but she was held firm to the wall. Suddenly she felt the false Clair's fingers undoing the lace that held her dress on and the fabric fall from her shoulders to her waist, falling to her hips and exposing her upper body. Paige felt bare and defiled, but that couldn't possibly compare to what came next.

Parthenia tried to cry out, her scream of pain muffled by the hand over her mouth as claw like nails dragged across her chest, slowly and painfully, parting the flesh and letting her bleed. Then the false Clair, Paige suspected now it was a demon, dug her entire hand into Paige's chest and gripped her heathly, throbbing heart. Tears ran down Paige's face in agonized pain and suffering as her vision flickered, blurry and turning black. Was this how she perished?

~Parthenia no longer knew time nor space, only a dreamy world far from the one she was dying in.~

~A memory so long forgotten, Paige could see herself standing in a field of beautiful flowers. She was young, perhaps ten, and stared at the most gorgeous horse in existance with a single, solitare and pure white horn petruding from it's forehead. The horse approached the girl who watching with with awe, nickering and whinnying in approval at the feild of flowers. The girl had obviously spent much time on it; fertilizing, scattering seeds, watering and simply adoring the plants.~

~The mythical beast approached the girl, looking upon her with ivory eyes, and could see how clean her soul was. A virgin maid, pure as white gold, trusting and innocent like the sunrise. One who loved and was loved and though in her lfie she was next to nothing, she was happy. Bending down it's long, lean neck the unicorn touched the girl's chest with the tip of it's horn; blessing her.~

~A unicorn's blessing is a rare and covented thing with grants the person the power over life. Other were more drawn to them, and felt better in their presence. Plants which were wilted sprung to life. The injuries of the wounded suffered no infection and the ill recovered in a fraction of the time they would without the blessed one's aid. And this gift was given to the kind hearted, strengthening them in their good will and fortune.~

~Parthenia was found later by her parents, asleep in the field. The girl held no recollection of her divine encounter with the legendary guardian of purity. How could she know that even now it was protecting her from death?~

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain grunted a bit, casting a glance at Aethyra more out of irritation than anything else. Bickering like old hens. Tch. The man had had a hand in imprisoning him, surely that was worthy of ire. Either way, he listened to Trifect speak. An interesting proposal. Although it had one massive downside. It kept him in this dreary castle. Still he was open for negotiation, "You have intrigued me, old man. What is it you are offering, exactly? I would prefer to travel than be stagnant, and knowing a kingdom's secrets is a dangerous thing. What guarantee have I that when I wish to be done with our contract, you would not simply have me killed? It would not be the first time I was stabbed in the back." He had been too trusting, then. Too naive, "I am no fool. But your claim to not just anyone being able to walk into the treasury is a bit false. Finance is delicate, perhaps, but I was able to do what I willed with the treasury. Like a fisherman cracking a clam, one might say. What is to stop me from doing so again, when your backs are turned? Trust does not come easy in my trade, ser, and I do not think it to come easily in yours."

Alain weighed the ups and downs. He liked his old life. Travel, different jobs, but there was always the threat of being killed in your sleep. With this, he'd be here in this dreary place when he wasn't out doing whatever it was Trifect had planned for him, but the pay would be good, and there was protection behind high stone walls. And there were other pros and cons, he supposed, hesitantly glancing at Aethyra. That was a whole other scale in and of itself. He wanted to leave behind someone who could use his tricks and such, a protege would definitely keep him occupied in his time off, in the least. Still, that was a delicate road. The first and last time he had taken a partner had ended in betrayal. He needed time to think about all this, but he would see Trifect's offer first.

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Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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Alaizabel continued to tug at the heart but she could not remove it, something was holding the girl's life tightly.
It was white magic, like none she had ever come across before and it was stronger than her. It was keeping the girl alive... but that didn't mean she couldn't take her strength from it.
Concentrating, the demon began to drain the pure flowing energy more vigorously, feeling her entire body resonating with new power... yes, her old strength was returning to her now.
All of a sudden she wrenched her hand away, staring at the blood dripping from it as she gasped. The power inside of her... she had never drained this much from touching a human heart, let alone consuming it. Yet this girl had a deeper, purer magic than any human.
She smiled to herself, looking over at the girl who seemed rather dazed from the drain.
"I think you and I are going to be very good friends Paige... but we need to keep it a secret."
Her gaze fell to the shattered amulet. With a flick of her wrist it became whole again, then she put it back around the girl's neck. Then she traced a finger along the wound, sealing it up before doing up her dress again, making the girl look like nothing had happened... she now had the power to clear up after herself.
Finally, Alaizabel placed a hand on the girl's cheek, leaning forward to whisper in her ear.
"You won't remember me sweetheart, but I will always remember you... and this is not our last meeting. You have a sweet power inside of you... I will need that power again. So whenever you hear me call your name, no matter what you are doing or who you are with you will go after my voice. You will make sure you are alone... then we'll see each other again." The demon leaned back. "But until then, you will tell people nothing of this. You went to see the baby, he is fine now but it was a very distressing time, hence why it took you so long to return."
Alaizabel smiled gently before stepping away, walking back into the shadows and dematerialising.
After she had dissappeared, the door clicked unlocked.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon
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"Would you two just st--" Aethyra's word was cut off with a gasp, then a gurgled cry of pain. It felt as though her very heart had shattered, like blood was pouring from her eyes. Little did she know that as the amulet had been shattered, so, too, had something shattered in the small heir, something desperate and necessary. She crumpled to the ground, feeling heavy, like a boulder had been placed on her chest. Choking and coughing, she squeaked out a cry of pain, and drug her nails along the stone. The darkness was penetrating her very soul, tearing her apart from the inside out. Parthenia's face flashed in her mind's eyes, and she was somehow able to cry out her name, weak, brittle. As soon as the name passed her lips, however, blood spurted out, a thick and dirty red color dribbling down her chin. A memory from her childhood resurfaced in her mind.

She had been young and stupid then, desperately wanting someone to treat her like she wasn't a china doll that would shatter at any moment. She couldn't get dirty. She couldn't play like the other children. She was lonely, and sad.

Parthenia had been the only one who spoke to her, looked her in the eye, smiled at her. Parthenia was the only one Aethyra called "friend."

"This is going to connect us, you see?" All pale and tiny, Aethyra had looked insane, her right palm bleeding, dripping on the stone. But Parthenia did not scream, or cry, or run. Parthenia wanted to help. "This will make us sisters. Blood sisters. Ok? Promise me, forever."

"Forever." A tiny prick on Parthenia's finger, a quick holding of hands, and the deed was done. Blood sisters. Forever.


Something else had changed that day. Their fates had intertwined. Forever was only the beginning. Aethyra was able to scream, pure and loud. And then, the girl, for that's all she really was, fainted, her fingertips torn from scrabbling at the stone, blood pouring from her lips, and her eyes wide open. Once you gazed upon her eyes, however, you'd notice something wrong; her irises appeared shattered, like glass, the pupil a tiny pin-prick.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain was still looking at Trifect when Aethyra made her noises. A gasp and a gurgle caused him to turn his eyes to her. Was she choking or something? No, it was something else entirely. She whispered something and then began coughing blood. Alain was on his feet and over the table in seconds, kneeling beside her. What the hell was going on? No poison or injury he had ever seen could cause this. Not even any magic he had seen could do this. Then she started screaming and then just as quickly as it started, she passed out, "What in the fuck...?" Alain breathed, looking at her eyes. He waved his hand in front of them, but they didn't respond, "What in god's name?" He didn't waste time. He may not have been a doctor, but anything he could do could potentially help her. Once more the white flame conjured in his hands, and it cascaded over the girl. He had no idea whether this was entirely useless or miraculously curative. Either way, she needed some real help, "I think you will agree, ser, that we cannot have the heir dying in our presence. Bad for business, generally. Medical wing. Where?" He asked, looking at Trifect for the answer.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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"I think you and I are going to be very good friends Paige... but we need to keep it a secret." The words were slurred and confusing but Paige did not like them, not in the slightest. They were evil and cruel and followed by an extreme pain like the life was being ripped from her soul. Her conscieness slowly returned to her, but her vision was blurred and she could not see the face of her attacker. Only the crimson color on it's hand and she demonic smile on it's face.

Parthenia stood still, weakened to the point she thought she may pass out again. Now the bloody hand, the hand covered in her blood, held the amulet. Aethrya had giving it t her, didn't she? Or had Paige found it? It was pretty, but hadn't it shattered? Paige didn't know. She couldn't know anything right now. Her whole body was throbbing in agony and she didn't know anything around her. There was only pain the know.

And slowly the pain was fading. Parthenia could feel her dress being laced up gently and the wetness of the blood on her chest being wiped away, leaving her clean once again. The gashes and hole which had caused her such great suffering where gone like they'd never been there to begin with. Everything was perfectly fine, but Parthenia felt to weak to smile and reassure herself she had suffered a vivid nightmare.

"You won't remember me sweetheart, but I will always remember you... and this is not our last meeting. You have a sweet power inside of you... I will need that power again. So whenever you hear me call your name, no matter what you are doing or who you are with you will go after my voice. You will make sure you are alone... then we'll see each other again." The demon woman, now her new Mistress, swayed backwards and Paige could tell she was getting further away from her. "But until then, you will tell people nothing of this. You went to see the baby, he is fine now but it was a very distressing time, hence why it took you so long to return."

Parthenia understood. This womans voice was beautiful and she desperately needed to serve this new Mistress. She was priority above all else, but only when she called. Paige didn't know how she knew this because she had gone to make sure Harding was okay. The doctors had managed to help him before she had arrived and fortunatly he was doing fine. Paige watched as the woman she could not recognize backed away and seemingly vanish while the door unlocked and creeked open.

With her only support gone, Parthenia's knees gave out and she slumped against the wall, slidding down it until she lay on the cold stone floor. Her body was motionless, except for the slow and irregular rising and falling of her chest. Her normally vivid blue eyes were glazed over and she felt extremely tired and weak. That was to be expeted though, wasn't it? It had been a long day and it was completely natural, even a little sore (which she was). But that didn't explain the distinct smell of copper, very similar to the smell of freshly spilt blood.

After a few moments, Paige forced herself to move, standing up. She swayed a moment, feeling lightheaded and weak, but tried to push through it. Aethyra was expecting her and was probably wondering where she had gone. Paige touched the amulet with glowed with a warning intensity as she quickly hurried down the halls, careful not the stumble due to her sudden fatigue. After what seemed like an eternity, Parthenia reatched the dinning room where the others were and lingered just outside the door, wishing to gather her strength and taking a few deep breaths so to look presentable. She was utterly exahusted but determine to remain loyal to her Mistress, her best friend, and her secret blood sister.

Then she stepped into the room and was stuck like a bullet with the most horrifying scene. Alain knelt beside Aethrya who was on her back, unsconscience, eyes widen and blood dripping from her lips. "AETHYRA!" Parthenia cried out, despite the fact it could get her in huge trouble for using the Heir's first name. The amulet throbbed violently and Parthenia clutched it in her hand. This was the amulet fueled by Aethrya's heart, and if harm came to it harm came to Aethrya, but this was something else entirely. It was almost like the amulet had shattered, but it was entirely whole! That didn't make sense, but there was no time for sense. Parthenia ran foreward with all the small strength she'd managed to withhold and knelt before Aethrya, quickly fassening the precious ward around the Heir's neck.

"Aethrya-" Paige said, sounding frantic, as she thought she was going to lose her best friend and blood sister. She sat beside the girl, her hands gripping the Heir's shoulders firmly, trying to awaken her from the sudden paralysis. In her blue eyes, though they were glazed and tired, was determination and adoration. Her entire body was shaking with effort, the only thing keeping her from collapsing on the floor. But Paige had no intention of fainting away during such a crisis. "Aethyra, it's me; Parthenia! Your protective amulet is back and your heart is safe once again. Wake up Aethrya, I'm begging you! Please be strong! Aethyra!" The anme said five times without her status being properly adressed, and yet Parthenia didn't care. Aehtyra's life was at stake, and tears spilt from Paige's eyes as she had a lingering suspition it was all her fault.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon
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#, as written by Magix
Trifect listened to Alain, and smiled a bit as he seemed interested. Had the fool royals listened to him, he wouldn’t be having this problem now. He could have had Alain under his thumb for this whole time. No use crying over spilt milk however, he wouldn’t get lost time back, and he himself, had plenty of time.

“You want a guarantee? You won’t know this kingdom’s secrets. As long as you do your job correctly, I don’t see much means in killing someone such as yourself. After all, you’d still be useful. If you don’t betray us, then we won’t betray you. If it comes down to a simple matter of money, we’ll pay better. Every time. As far as the tasks they would... differ. I do not think here is the best place to discuss such things, do you? You would still spend likely more time away from here, then behind these walls if you so choose, and the time you are not working, you are free to do what you please. Take up a room and sleep in, travel to places, whatever you can think of. Though, our kingdom will not back you stealing things from anyone, so it’s best to make sure you don’t get caught. Oh and as far as trust goes, it’s not something I give to many people at all. Were you to take my offer some things would have to be reinforced around here, such as enchantments on the treasury. I do not intend to treat you as someone you are not, and I would hate to have to lock you up because you broke in again.”

Trifect stood up when something began to happen to Aethyra. He couldn’t exactly place it, though knowing what Alaizabel was most likely doing to Paige somewhere else, it was likely the two were related. Although he couldn’t place how. His study of light magic hadn’t been anywhere near as thorough as his study of dark magic after all. Alain was quick to pick her up, perhaps he actually liked the girl? Maybe he was in it for gold? Well his motive’s didn’t really matter now. “We cannot have the heir dying at all. I would guide you there myself, but you can move quicker then a gimp like myself. Out these doors you will make a left. Pass the first turn you see, and keep going straight. Take the next right after that. Pass 3 turns, and on the 4th turn, turn left. Straight down that hallway, you will find the medical wing. Make haste now.”

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Setia
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain listened to the older man's instructions. He may not know the castle at all, but directions he could follow. He hoisted the girl (to no surprise, she was still exceptionally light, even in the weighty dress) and put her over his shoulder. He nodded once as he memorized the man's directions and said nothing more to any of the people in the room. He used his hand to lightly move past the servant girl and then ran to the doors, using his opposite shoulder to push the doors open. Following Trifect's instructions to the letter, he sprinted through the halls, pushing past servants (and a young girl who seemed to be just wandering the halls aimlessly, for what purpose, gods only knew) who happened to get in his way. He honestly wasn't sure what his motivation for doing this was either. He could have let the girl be carried away by whatever pitiful members of the staff whomever would have called, and there would have been no consequence to him. And yet he didn't. He could see potential in the girl, but was that really what drove him? The pursuit of money was inconsequential at this point, Trifect would no doubt pay him whether the girl lived or died, because in a way, he got the feeling the man did not like the girl, and he could definitely tell she did not like him. In the end, as he carried her through the doors of the medical wing, he decided on his reasons were irrelevant. He never acted on the why of things, he acted on what made sense. And for now, getting the girl to doctors as fast as possible seemed to make the most sense.

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Character Portrait: Trifect Quaizon Character Portrait: Alaizabel
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Alaizable travelled through the shadows back to the dining room, following the steps of Paige.
She was more than surprised when she saw the state of the princess on the floor, had Trifect revealed himself as a traitor? No, as the man in question was giving direction to the medical wing to that rogue Alain. Now why was he helping the princess? Not that it mattered, what mattered was that the princess survived... at least long enough for Alaizabel to exact her revenge.
Once the room was clear apart from Trifect she clicked her fingers, causing the doors to drift shut slowly to give them some privacy as she materialised from inside the shadows.
"Oh my, I do hope she's going to be alright... I should hate to have gone to all this trouble only to have her die by a hand other than mine." She said, walking forward slightly before sliding into one of the chairs, her eyes on the chancellor.
All around the room, hiding in the corners the shadows were writhing more than usual, drawn by her power. She herself could feel the strength of her magic brimming over her, it was intensifying the ethereal beauty of her human form and making her practically radiant with magic. It had been so long since she had felt this full of power, and the demon had no desire to lose that feeling again.
"That girl was a marvellous choice Trifect, did you know she had been touched by white magic? That's why I couldn't kill her... but I can take what I need from her at anytime. Whoever knew the light could be so useful." She murmured, a soft smile playing on her lips. Then she sat up, looking at him intently. "But now to business, you seemed to be getting rather friendly with that man, Alain was it? Is he worth bringing to our side? I know he would be willing to... with the right motivation."
If Alain was worth bringing to their side, she would need to figure out exactly what would persuade him before making a move.
Money was the obvious answer, and she was certain that Trifect had already offered it, but with the way he reacted to the princess's sudden attack she figured there was a better way to go about this. Besides, she remembered when she spoke to him... how he had turned around like he was expecting something in particular... something, or someone.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Paige followed behind Alain as he ran, carrying Aethyra upon his shoulders. She knew there was very little she could do but offer support and tell him if he made a wrong turn, but she came along anyways. After all, Aethyra was her Mistress, her Best Friend and her Blood Sister. As they entered the doctors quarters, a man ran up to them wearing clean clothing with only a few spots of blood on them. He had tuffs of grey hair on the top of his head and his cheeks were sunken in. There was little coloration in his face, ghostly white as he caught sight of the Heir. "Oh no! Oh dear! What happened?!" he demaned, motioning for soem others to wheel over a padded bed for Alain to lay Aethrya on. "Paige! What is going on?! Come on girl, out with it! Whatever you say could be crutial in helping the Heir!"

Parthenia shook her head. "I-I don't know Dr. Gregory sir! All I know is that when I entered the room she was laying on the floor, her eyes wide opena and she was unconscience. I think she coughed up blood because she was shaking and had a little line of blood from her mouth leading to a little pool of blood on the floor!" she confessed quickly and another nurse behind Dr. Gregory was frantically writing notes onto a peice of paper with a quill. Dr. Gregory then turned to Alain with his firm, charcoal greyish eyes, "And do you know what happened? Can you tell us anymore about what happened?"

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain yanked his arm up and in front of his own face, showing it to this annoying doctor, "If you do not calm down, I swear to gods above I will slap you like the bitch you are." He said, putting Aethyra down on the bed indicated, "She stood up, screamed, said the servant girl's name, coughed up blood, collapsed, and then passed out. I imagine it has something to do with magic or something, I did what I could with my own magic, but I imagine it was not much."

He turned back to Paige, eyeing her. Something had happened while the kid was gone, it didn't take a brain surgeon to figure that one out, the question simply was what exactly had happened? She looked fine, without a hair out of place; well, figuratively, anyway, she now looked quite disheveled with the turn of events, but when she had come back, she hadn't looked as though anything was wrong...wait a second...hadn't she gone to check on a babe? How was it that she came back so quickly? The trip had taken him mere minutes in full sprint, it hadn't taken her too much longer, "You. Servant girl. Did anything strange happen on the way to or from your destination? And what happened to the babe?" Once she had answered, he turned to look at the doctors, "Did this girl come here within the past...eh, thirty minutes or so to check on some babe with another woman?" Something wasn't adding up. He didn't know what it was, but something wasn't right. If the doctor didn't corroborated her story, then one of them was lying...and given the heir randomly said the servant's name before she collapsed, he was inclined to believe it was her who was hiding something.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Aethyra awoke with a start, the shattered appearance of her eyes still apparent in her irises. Covered in a fine layer of cold sweat, she shook, terrified; she hadn't even dreamt, nothing. Just trapped in a nothingness, alone, mute, deaf and blind. In a fit, she pulled a blade from Alain's belt, and buried it into the folds of her dress, narrowly missing her leg, and began to saw at the heavy garment. It was heavy, and hot, and aggrivating. She tore and tugged at the gown until it fell to her knees, then sagged back into the bed before holding the blade out to Alain again. Her eyes fell on Paige, and she heaved a sigh of relief, before smiling awkwardly.

"You're alive...oh, thank the maker of this universe, you are alive."

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Parthenia was horried by Alain's description of Aethyra's small scene. What on earth could cause her Mistress to go into such a shock. But what he said next was even more surprising. "You. Servant girl. Did anything strange happen on the way to or from your destination? And what happened to the babe?" Paige shook her head, "No, nothing happened that I can recall. I mean, I had a small fainting episode from too much exertion, but I recovered quickly. But that a normal thing to occure as it happens to every servant now and again." Paige said with a small shrug. It was true, she had no recollection of visiting the medical quarters, but she had visisted them. This she knew. "As for darling little Harding, he was fine by the time I arrived." Again, how she knew this wasn't entirely clear to her, but she just knew.

Alain then turned to Dr. Gregory and said rather demaningly, "Did this girl come here within the past...eh, thirty minutes or so to check on some babe with another woman?" Dr. Gregory shook his head slowly. "No, she hasn't. And we havn't had a baby in here for the past two weeks." Paige was stunned and turned to him with a small amount of panic in her voice. "B-But that cannot be! I was informed that little Harding had been having trouble breathing and had been moved here for care!" The doctor shook his grey haired head again. "Parthenia, you havn't been here since early this morning to get some herbal tea for an older man who had requested it."

Parthenia became abnormally quiet, a look of disbelieving shock and confusing coming over her face. This didn't make any sense... She had been told Harding was moved here, but he wasn't. She was told he was having breathing problems, but he has been fine. When she came here to check on him, but no one had seen her when she was here. And then to top it all, after waking from a fainting spell she'd found herself to have no recollection of any of this. She just... knew that she had done it, but couldn't recall actually doing it. "This..." she said softly, moving her hands to hold them over her chest, "This cannot be..."

Upon her heart she noticed a familiar absence where she had taken off Aethyra's amulet. Suddenly, something struck her. That gem her Mistress had placced around her neck was Aethrya's ward of protection. If anything had happened to Paige, it would have caused this to happen to Aethrya! But nothing had happened; not that Paige could recall. Fainting or a linging feeling of weakness would not do this to her either: Paige would have needed to experianced a brush with death but that was ridiculous. If she had suffered that she definitally wouldn't be standing here, now, alive and healthy.

Suddenly, Paige heard a sharp gasp and looked at Aethyra who had bolted up, eyes wide and paniced. Before anyone would say anything, she snagged Alain's knife from his belt and proccedded to rip away the fabric of her dress until it was quiet short. Paige didn't lift a finger to stop her, as she knew this was an action of recovery and how much Aethyra loathed her gowns. She made a mental note that, when they were in a more private place she would help loosen the poor girl's corset too. Once she had finished she gave the knife back and lay back down a little. Her eyes falling upon Paige, she smiled (which probably shocked the majority of the staff) and Paige returned it with an encouraging smile of her own. "You're alive...oh, thank the maker of this universe, you are alive." Paige nodded and clasped her hand gently, looking at her intensely, "Yes my Lady, I'm perfectly fine. But the most important thing is: are you alright?"

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain nodded as he heard the doctor speak. So it was as he suspected. Something was amiss, and attempting to cover its tracks. He wanted answers. Absently, he snatched the knife back from Aethyra and sheathed it promptly. For one, she shouldn't have even been able to get a knife away from him, not if he was thinking clearly. But no, he was too preoccupied with this...fiasco to even defend himself from disarming. He found himself resisting the urge to look down, and ignored the fact, "Tell us whatever you can, Aethyra, about what happened to you. Spare no details." He said seriously. Whatever she could explain was important, but he knew there would be no solving this with words alone.

He would listen to Aethyra's recollection of events, then conduct his own investigation, "Your servant has more to do with this all than you might think, as we are just finding out." He turned to Parenthia and looked at the girl with a hard expression, "What of the other servant who accompanied you? Were I someone intelligent in this castle, I would have her rounded up for questioning. She was the start of this false information, no doubt she is responsible for something." Even so, what could a mere maid do, and for what purpose? Poison the heir, get some reward? But then who would benefit? The girl had said she had a sister, but that could not be so easy; not unless the sister was so truly mad for power, anyway. It wouldn't be the first time he had seen something like this. Trifect didn't exactly seem to like the girl, and it would provide him the perfect alibi, but would the adviser really kill the heir for simple dislike? There were simply too many unknowns, all complicated by the simple facts: He had no right to be here, yet here he was, meddling away in something his nose didn't belong in; he had no idea the relations set up by those in the castle to those who had invaded, vice versa, and anything in between; and lastly, he knew no-one by any extent of the word. Aethyra was person he knew the most about, and even that was exceedingly stark knowledge. He let out an absent sigh as he went over all of this in his head. Why was it so important he find out who had done this? He should have just left, on the spot. He need not be mixed into this slew of confusion and suspicion, yet now he chose to stay. He didn't understand himself sometimes...

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Aethyra slid off the bed, breathing easier, her chin high and eyes stoney once more. Pain be damned, she had business to do. She studied Parthenia closely, squinting a bit, biting her tongue in concentration. The usual white glow that surrounded her friend was faded, muted, as though it had been rubbed against something filthy and dark. Someone, something, was after her, for her purity and innocence, that was sure.

"Spread the word," she said, her voice barely above a whisper, "lock every door, every window, every gate. No one comes in, no one goes out. I want every torch lit, every bit of glow-stone used, everywhere inside. There will be no shadows, none. Every single blasted thing must be lit, and glowing. I want Parthenia put under careful surveillance, with a mage of some sort nearby. Bathe her in light, do not let her alone, even with one such as I. If I will be with her, I will be watched as well." The doctor leapt forward, tittering with worry.

"But my lady, the expenses will--"

Aethyra spun on him, slowly backing him into the stone wall with small, shivering steps. "Shit to the expenses," she hissed, and the doctor's eyes widened as the curse left her lips, "I want nothing but light everywhere. Have someone ready my hunting gear, and fetch the box I had locked away. I plan to return to the dungeons tonight." Her eyes flicked over Alain for a moment, then were turned back to the doctor, "Alone."

Spying a small medical blade on the table, she took it in lithe fingers and slit her palm gently, not once wincing as blood pooled along her skin. She pressed her bloodied hand to the stone and whispered gently, a red coil snaking from her arm, along the wall, and split to disappear into the stonework. Though she knew little, she had learned a bit of magic, old spells, the "Royal Tricks," as some called them. As the coils slithered among the castle, images, snapshots from everywhere came into her mind; she could see all, hear all, feel all.

"Someone has dared to disturb me, my family, my home, my life, my friends. Darkness or not, I won't let that go fucking unnoticed." Turning her back to the doctor, she flung the door wide, eyes wild, and took a deep breath. "Now, if you all wouldn't mind, I'd like to take this blasted corset off before my ribs snap in half."

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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"Your servant has more to do with this all than you might think, as we are just finding out." Alain said and turned to Parthenia, eyeing her coldly which made her cridge back a slight bit. "What of the other servant who accompanied you? Were I someone intelligent in this castle, I would have her rounded up for questioning. She was the start of this false information, no doubt she is responsible for something."

"Clair? She was out tending to the horses earlier this morn." One of the nurses said, "She fell ill all of the sudden not two hours ago. We only were able to wake her some odd thirty minutes ago." Paige gasped, "But... that cannot be! I meet with her in the dinning room not two hours ago and she informed me that dear little Harding's life was in danger. Then she showed me here and I fainted on my way back to the dinning room."

The nurse shook her head sadly, obviously concerned and walked away to help a moaning patient. Paige was paler than usual and watched, dumbfounded as Aethyra whispered something she couldn't hear to the doctors. "But my lady, the expenses will--" "Shit to the expenses," Aethyra whipped around and hissed. She was never the girl that one wanted to cross paths with and Parthenia felt herself shink a little bit at her words, though they obviously weren't aimed at her. "I want nothing but light everywhere. Have someone ready my hunting gear, and fetch the box I had locked away. I plan to return to the dungeons tonight. Alone."

Paige watched helplessly, biting her lip as Aethyra slit her own hand and pressed it to the wal, a magic trick she'd explained to Paige once. A small snake of blood was created and acted like a scout for it's origin. "Someone has dared to disturb me, my family, my home, my life, my friends. Darkness or not, I won't let that go fucking unnoticed." Aethyra growled under her breath, glaring at no one in particular before she turned away and sighed shortly. "Now, if you all wouldn't mind, I'd like to take this blasted corset off before my ribs snap in half."

Parthenia knew her call her she heard it and rushed to Aethyra's side. "Here my Lady, allow me to help you with that. We may get that terrible make up off your face and change you into something more appropriate to wear." she said kindly, very gently guiding her towards the door. Both she and Aethyra knew the moment they were back in privacy they would be able to take the stupid corset off and put her in some real pants, as well as wash the smeared colors and dyes off her face. Plus maybe then they'd have a moment where they could speak openly to eachother.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain scoffed as Aethyra mentioned going to the basement alone, following the girls out into the hallway, "Well, are we not a scary little princess with our bow and magical parlor tricks, with your nonexistent combat experience and how much training? And let us not forget what happened last time we were in the basement, Ms Drag Me Out of the Basement Kicking and Screaming. And then there is always the fact that you were just passed out on a table, bleeding from your mouth, and barely able to lift yourself up off of it. Do we really think going anywhere alone is a good idea, least of all the basement?" He asked, keeping his distance, but matching their strides, "Not only that, but I did not hear a 'Thank you Alain for carrying me from the dining hall to the medical wing in about three minutes flat. I am ever so grateful that you interrupted your job offer to race me to the medical wing.'" he said in a slightly irritated tone. After all, it wasn't like he did things worth thanking him over often. And for some reason, he felt quite irked about it at the moment. Either way, he was getting to the bottom of this mystery, or he was leaving this stupid bastardized castle behind. He didn't really care which, at this point.