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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.

873 readers have been here.

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Default Location for Thorns Within the Rose
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Korratoth

The dark kingdom newly invaded by the Lord.

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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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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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With a nod, she tightened the sash around her waist. Aethyra was not vain, but she did enjoy wearing clothes that fit, they were simpler to move in. Keeping silent, she listened to him prattle on about his fighting abilities, an eyebrow raised slightly. The cold did nothing more than nip gently at her ankles, but she paid it no mind, it was hardly unbearable. Alain seemed, not nervous exactly, but definately wary. He didn't like it down here, that much was obvious, and Aethyra couldn't exactly blame him. Placing a steady hand on his shoulder, she whispered gently, "It will be stealthy and quick as well."

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain gave her a look, but said nothing. He didn't quite know what they were looking for, but he supposed they would know it when they saw it. Down and down they went, until finally the staircase ended. Finally. It had seemed like forever. How deep were they below the earth now? He couldn't possibly know, "These catacombs...what purpose could they possibly serve? The royal dead need not be buried so deep...there are crypts for such things..." he asked the air around them, not really expecting an answer. The air was stale here, not at all fresh...but there was the hint of rot on it as well, as though dead flesh had become pugnent and old. These narrow passageways were not to his liking in the slightest. He needed open spaces where he could manuever, "How much farther?"

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Closing her eyes, Aethyra could see a darkness licking at her from behind closed lids, pooling off to her right. Placing a hand on the wall beside her, she pushed, and the wall gave slightly, then slid open. A secret prison, she thought, clever. But not clever enough. Shivers coursed down her spine once she opened it, but something further down called to her. She took one shaky step, then another, and turned to look at Alain. He was not happy here, it made him nervous, and while being so far under the earth bother Aethyra as well, she was better situated here.

"You do not have to continue on if you do not wish. You may find your payment in my bedchamber, a satchel of gold sits beneath my pillow." What was this feeling in her gut? It couldn't be fear, no, Aethyra was not afraid, not of anything. Was it...regret? Regret that he may leave her? Shock apparent on her face, she turned back to face the dark hallway in front of her. "Your duty ends here. If you do not wish to leave on your own, you may wait for me at the guard station, and I shall pay and bid you leave once I return." As she began to walk further into the stale, rotten air, she found herself hoping that he would not leave her. And that scared her more than the darkness could.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain bowed his head a bit at her words. Well, that was easier than he had thought. She didn't even want him to stay and help her investigate whatever creepy dream shit lurked in the darkness? That worked for him. Easiest money he ever made. With a smirk, he took a few steps back up, when an odd feeling caught in his chest. He physically put his hand to his chest, as if expecting to find something there. Nothing. Yet the feeling persisted. Guilt? Did he feel guilty about leaving the unarmed, under-clothed, teenager in the dark depths that literally smelt of death? He shouldn't, but he did. He rolled his eyes. He already knew why he was feeling this. She reminded him of himself at her age. He sneered for a moment as he gave a sigh, "Fuck me...easiest fucking money I ever made my ass..." he said to himself before turning back and following her into the depths, "If I go back up there, I am going to have to actually work to get the hell out of here. And I am not waiting and some ridiculous little guard post like a coward. I am no coward. When we get topside, you are walking me out of here, girl."

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Aethyra nearly smiled, and continued to walk, her pace and gait unchanged. So, he wasn't leaving her...good. But at the same time, terrible: because he was suscepting himself to her nightmares. Things could get terrible now, especially thanks to the dark feeling that sat festering in her chest. "Be careful, Alain," she said gently, "or someone may believe you care about someone other than yourself." It was unfair and a bit cruel to say, she knew, but it was her attempt at teasing. It made her somewhat happy that he decided to stay, but she squelched those feelings, her mind on the darkness ahead.

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#, as written by Aufeis
"I will bear that in mind. Do not get any funny ideas, girl. You are a client, and my ticket out of here without soldiers breathing down my neck. Nothing more." He hoped she wasn't romanticizing their little foray into the darkness. This wasn't some child's fairy tale where the princess falls in love with the pauper, and even if it were, he wanted no part of it. Women, love, politics. All of it was just...more trouble than it was worth. He had been down the path of love once before, and he had been stabbed in the back because of it, literally and figuratively. He wasn't about to do that again, especially not for some tart in a castle wrapped up entirely in politics and such. Usurping a kingdom didn't exactly come free of political fallout. It already bugged him that he felt guilty about leaving the girl down here. He would not let that feeling become anything more than mirror to his own past. He couldn't deny that she did have a certain beauty to her, but she was still a child. The precipice of childhood, perhaps, but a child no less. He shrugged a little, "I care about my coin purse and my life. By extension, I care about my clients."

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Aethyra stopped dead in her tracks, and spun to face him, anger marring her face. "Listen to me. This is the last time I will say this. I do not care if you are the best thief in the entire land. I do not care if you could slice my throat in the blink of an eye. I do not care anything about you. But I am no girl. I am not a child. This has nothing to do with my station, but I will not be treated as a mere girl. If you refuse to follow this, than you are not bound to help me. I'm sure you can find a creative way out."

Twirling back around, she continued to walk, face red, eyes harsh. Embarrased and angry, curling and uncurling her fists, she strode down through the darkness. How was it that this man could make her so incredibly angry? She never showed this much anger, this much feeling period. Aethyra knew that the only way to make the terrible feelings in her chest would be to distance herself from him. She only hoped that poison-tipped words could keep him far enough away.

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#, as written by Aufeis
This was not the first, nor did he doubt the last time he would be shouted at for refusing to use someone's name, "Until you prove yourself my equal, I refuse to waste my breath with your name. I do not care if your Lord himself were to give me his name, I would not use it either. It is not just you, do not think yourself to be special." He said with a shrug, "What would you have me call you, then? Child and girl only seem to anger you, and heir and princess seem to do the same; I do not do it as a sign of disrespect You need not get so frustrated by such simple terms as this, especially as it is your title. It is not fit of a young woman taking the place of queen of a kingdom one day." Mostly he was just trying to get her goat, but his words did hold a small amount of truth as well. He kept his weapon in hand, but put his hands behind his head and stretched as he walked. He really didn't know what else to say to her little outburst.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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"I never said I wanted to be the blasted, bloody Queen," she hissed, but otherwise kept quiet, walking down the corridor until she came to a large metal door. Aethyra pressed against the door, huffing with effort, until it finally gavem and she stumbled into the now open room. It was dark, save for a circle in the middle of the room, lit by a single flickering lantern. She stepped close and studied it, coming to the conclusion that it absolutely had to be magic that kept the blasted thing burning so long. Kneeling down, the pale-haired heir noticed many shards of strained, shattered glass that absolutely pulsated with something dark, centered around the circle. Everything was wrong here.

She stayed silent, letting the hunter mentality come into her, swiveling her head side-to-side, pupils large as she surveyed every inch of the room. Her eyes looked ethereal, and she tilted her head, trying to pick up on any un-natural sounds. Any worries about Alain, looking odd, or being angry had disappeared from her mind.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain stood quietly as he watched her do her own thing. Nobody ever got born as what they wanted to be, huh? People always found something to complain about. If you wanted to change what you were and how your life was, you had to work at it, "This place is old...very old...and tainted. With what, I do not know." He murmured, more to himself than to her, running his hand along the wall closest him. The centerpiece to the room just gave him chills. He could feel the...well, he didn't quite know what it was, but he didn't like it. He held out his hand and conjured up a small flame in his palm, the white fire just sort of bobbing around in his hand. It was hot enough to burn, but it was by no means an offensive spell. Just a small, personal light; it just seemed to be consumed by the darkness, though, "The inky blackness just seems unending. Not even a magic flame seems to penetrate it..." they shouldn't be here. That was what rung out in his brain, screaming. They shouldn't be here. The body just knew this kind of thing. He walked closer to her, standing close and alert. The quicker she finished, the sooner they could leave this forsaken place.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Aethyra's curiousity would be the death of her, that much was apparent in the way she stroked the bits of glass, glanced about the room. Something was calling to her. And she knew that if she pressed farther on, she would die. But the call was so heavy, so beautiful...she wanted to get to the end of it. If Alain wanted her to leave, he'd have to drag her kicking and screaming. Her eyes were hazy, and her voice coarse as she spoke. "I'm going deeper," she croaked, and began to stagger across the room, eyes locked on another door.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain looked back at her as she talked about going deeper. Eh, no. This place was bad enough. Even he knew it would be foolhardy to venture deeper into these unholy grounds. He took her wrist, turning her towards him, "No, we are not going deeper. We are going back to the surface. You want to come back here, you come better equipped, do you hear me?" Hang on a tick...his own eyes widened as he looked at her. She was under some sort of trance, it was written across her face like bold print, the way she spoke, the way she caressed the glass as though it were something precious instead of some shard of glass. Now they'd done it. He snorted as he disobeyed his own second rule, pulling her close with one swift motion and hefting her up onto his shoulder. She wasn't heavy by any means, though climbing the stairs again would be a burden, "We are going back, now. You said you would follow my orders, well, that is an order. Once you have your wits about you again, then we will talk." There was some sort of connection, between her and whatever dwelled (or had dwelled) in this place. He didn't know what kind, and now they'd triggered something. A trap, maybe. A curse. These sorts of things happened from time to time. He expected her to fight him and tried to prepare himself for her flailing, but if the girl really wanted out of his arm, she would get out, "You will thank me later, trust me."

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Aethyra began to struggle, clawing at his back and kicking her legs, occasionally screaming to be released. She had to be nearer to the dark, had to know why it sang to her...but the farther and farther she got from the glass, the more her mind cleared, and her thrashing slowed, became less violent. Eventually, she stopped, and her face filled with blood, her cheeks and ears tinted entirely pink. "I am alright now," she muttered, "you may place me down." Embarrased beyond belief, Aethyra couldn't believe she had acted so childish, let alone be effected by the blasted spell! She had thought herself stronger than this.

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Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Daniel Alaric
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Daniel nodded to the Paige and turned, heading for the castle again. He himself wanted to be in the midst of the tempest. it was honest beauty. Raw electricity arching through the the clouds, roaring in defiance to the earth, it was beauty. He sighed and looked up at the clouds as the rain began to fall lightly. "After you, miss Parthenia"

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain had to grit his teeth against her nails digging into his back. She was like a very angry animal, and he had just disturbed her from her den, and she dug deep. Finally she stopped, though, which he was thankful for, but when she mentioned being put down, he shook his head. No, he wasn't putting her down until he was sure they were far enough away that she wasn't going to run back down here and make him chase her again. The guard station was far enough. He set her down on the table, shoving the dead guard out of his chair as he did, before pulling his own tunic over his head. He looked at a nearby mirror, looking at the array of scratches across his back, "Well, is that not just fantastic. I look like I was rolling around in the glass shards myself, instead of carrying you back up the stairs." He said with an irritated shrug, before conjuring another white flame in his hands. Gently it rose from his hand and spread over his back. When the flames subsided, the scratches were gone completely. With that done, he turned his attention back to her. He could still see the pink that echoed in her cheeks, though whether it was still as bad as it had been initially, he didn't even think about. Or, he tried to casually ignore it, anyway, "Feeling all better now, are we? Have our wits about us and all? If so, then tell me if that entire trip was wasted or not."

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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Aethyra seemed to find her hands very, very intruiging, and studied them in depth, trying desperately not to look up at Alain, who stood annoyed before her. He had carried her the entire way here, dropped her into the chair, and she was sure he was going to scold her as though she were a small child again...but she was. Or had been. The darkness had brought out a need in her that she hadn't realized was there, brought out a young demon in her. Not only had he thrown her over his shoulder in an attempt to save her, but she had repaid him by scratching him, harming him, though if he had not come with her, she would surely be dead.

"I'm sorry," she whispered, confused as to why she was shaking so. He healed the scratches with a fair bit of magic, yet her guilt remained. She had never hurt another human being before, was that why she was so upset? She had not drawn blood, only scratched his skin a bit, yet she could not bring herself to look at him. Guilt, embarrasment, anger, sadness...she had never felt so many emotions, especially not in a span of a few hours.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain held his gaze on her for another moment before finally letting it falter with a sigh. This would get them nowhere. He stood for another moment before he held his hand out to her, though he didn't look at her, "Come on, let us get you someplace where you can see the sun again. Skulking around here will do nothing good for either of us. And our friend here is beginning to become a bit stale." He said, though he stood between the dead man and Aethyra. His face was puffing up with the internal bleeding from the wound Alain had inflicted, and his head was a deep purple. Blood was pooling near and around his skull. While somewhat humorous looking to Alain, he was sure she would not find it so lighthearted, "Besides, I could use something to eat. It is not every day one goes from eating prisoner food to being able to eat a banquet, yes? I am sure you could use a little energy as well, after descending those stairs for so long." Truthfully, if Alain never saw another stair again it would be too soon, but he wouldn't say it. That was just an unnecessary amount of stairs, "And perhaps it would do you some good to change into some proper clothing, yes?"

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Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine Character Portrait: Daniel Alaric
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Parthenia went inside dantily, followed by Daniel. She turned and was about to say something to him, a word of thanks for his kindness when there came a voice she all too well. "Parthenia! Where are you girl?" It was Ms Hitmit, the self assigned servant master (or mistress). She was the boss of everyone, not by a proper title but because she was the most hardy and expeiranced, having spent most all the years of her life being a servant. Sending a longing look at Daniel she called back, "I'm over here Ms Hitmit!"

"And why aren't you over here instead of over there girl? You were off in the feilds again weren't you? Don't you know you have duties and chores you must do; responsibilities to manage and a kingdom to keep?"

"Yes Ms Hitmit. I'll get back to work again. I'm sorry to disappoint you."

"Sorry? Sorry? You shun your job and all you have to say is that your are sorry? Parthenia, get your tush here this instant! You have too much to do to stand around talking! Don't you know Madame Slenie's baby will be coming soon and she wants you to be there to help deliever it? Honestly, you are so scattered brained, you'd lose your head if it wasn't fasened onto your shoulders..."

The voice was heard fainting through the halls, muttering things like, "I was never this forgetful... And now a lady wants her help delivering a baby! I can't imagine why though... After all, what help is a little servant girl? Kindness and laugher have never birthed a child. I mean, really... the girl has never deliviered a baby on her own before; hers of anothers! Still needs help to do it... It's a good thing I'm here or this would be a mess...!"

Parthenia looked at David sorrowfully, knowing she had in fact spent too much time slacking off and enjoying herself. That was the lfie of a noble woman, not a servant girl. "I'm sorry," she said to Daniel, looking at her feet, "But I have to go now. Thank you for your time. It was lovely." Then, like a will-o-wisp, Paige scamppered off into the dark halls, vanishing as if she was never there to begin with. She was good at that.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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She stood without his hand, and nodded before whisking her way back towards the rest of the castle, her eyes low. Proper attire, yes, that would be good...a good bath, a fresh gown, a hearty meal, goblets and goblets of wine...it would do her good. And seeing Parthenia would settle her nerves. Aethyra smirked a bit as she though of what was to come: she'd step out onto the grounds, accompanied by a convicted felon, and stroll about calmly. They'd break their fast and chat a bit, she'd give him his payment, and he'd disappear, never to be seen again. Her smile faltered a bit. Had she already grown so used to him, in the little under an hour they'd been together? Listening to his breathing and muffled steps, she realized she had.

"Yes," she said, her voice softer than it had been before, "a banquet, to celebrate your freedom. Of course. Do you prefer wine or ale? Lamb of pheasant? I should alert the cook." Her teasing was hollow, and awkward, coming from such a straight-laced girl, but it was her attempt at being non-chalant.

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Character Portrait: Alain Rolands Character Portrait: Aethyra
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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain shrugged a bit as she got up without his help, not that it really mattered on way or another. "Do not really need to celebrate something I never lost in the first place. I would say it would be more fitting to celebrate not being dead. Considering we went into some cursed crypt alone, with nary three weapons between us, and all I got was a few scratches, we should count ourselves incredibly lucky. Shit like that does not happen every day, you know." Why did it matter what they ate for, he just wanted to eat. His stomach let out a long, low growl as if to emphasis it all. Pheasant, lamb, wine, ale, he'd never had the option of such nice choices before. The swill in the town bar was pretty much the highlight of his meal, a casual ale and some sad excuse for steak or brisket, maybe a plate of chicken with potatoes. How he could go for some scalloped potatoes right about now. His mouth watered a little at the thought. He shook his head a little, "How does lamb, scalloped potatoes, some steamed corn, with a bit of wine to top it all off sound to you? Last I ate so well was a meal stolen from a count to the far east of here, in a land I no longer remember the name of. Nigh three years ago, I think." He stretched a little and thought about where he was to go next. Would this place just become some far distant memory he only vaguely recollected...and even if it did, why did it bother him so? He stopped for a moment, thinking back a ways. Something was nagging at him, "Oh. Right. I meant to ask earlier, what was it you were going to tell the guard before? When you stumbled upon me cleaning up after myself? Your lord wished something, if I remember right."

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"The Lord wished to question you," Aethyra said, "but he will not if I tell him not to. He does not wish to upset me." As they walked, and neared the exit, she paused and turned to look at him, her curiosity once again getting the better of her. "Where is it that you will go once you leave here?" She wasn't sure why she wondered, but she did. Banquets and joking aside, she couldn't squash the feeling that this wasn't the last she'd see of him.

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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain shrugged, "I go where there is work, where things need to be stolen or locks need to be picked, men assassinated and protection offered. It's all a matter of jobs, really." He said, though in truth, he mostly just wandered. No real destination, just went wherever the wind blew. There really was no rhyme or reason for it, he just wandered, "Been wandering for a long time now. Been on the street longer still. Not a bad life, but not necessarily a good one either. Beggars cannot be choosers, I suppose." He supposed he could maybe stick around for a while longer if this lord of hers had something interesting to say. Who knew, the ringing of 'royal pilferer' didn't entirely sound bad, as long as he wasn't involved in the politics of it all. And even if that were the case, he would only be around for as long as he was interested. Could be a week, could be years, though no place had offered him the thought of staying for years in all his life...well...not since that place, but he preferred not to think of it, "I think I will hear what your lord has to say before I leave. One so 'powerful' and such seeing one of my being is not entirely common. I sense a proposition."

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"Perhaps. I ignore the politics mostly." Aethyra sighed; it was true. She did not enjoy politics, meetings, problems as those, they were boring and not her job, not yet. Something had been bothering her for a while, though, and she bit her bottom lip gently. "You kept calling me 'girl.' It bothers me. How old are YOU, exactly, to call me a girl? And how old do you think I am?" She pushed open the door, blinking her eyes as light suddenly flooded her eyes. A guard across the way stiffened, but she waved a lazy hand and shooed him away, her stride lengthening as she hurried down the corridor.

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Character Portrait: Parthenia "Paige" Daphine
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Scuttling back and forth, Parthenia busied herself with finishing the day's tasks and getting ready for that evening. The Lady Slenie's baby was on the way, Ms Kemon knew, and if Ms Kemon (who had bore seven children of her own as well as countless others for other people) said a baby was coming soon; a bab ywas coming soon. Parthenia had never delievered a child herself, which was just as well because she was still young and inexperianced. This would be her first time to witness it; though most likely she would be clinging to the Lady's hand to comfort be through out the ordeal.

There was a special reason that Ms Kemon had requested Paige, and this was because of the many times she had attented to her. Always Paige was helpful and kind, which the woman appriciated. When struggling, Paige offered a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on and advice if it was ever asked for. She was never judgmental or cruel or unkind with her words nor her actions. Now, after a number of monthes being attentive and caring when Ms Kemon needed her (or didn't need her) it was no real surprise what the simple servant girl had been asked for by name.

It was beginning to get late and Parthenia had just been finishing up the last of her chores, gathering what would be needed for child birth and talking with some of the more experianced maids for advice and encouragment. "The baby is coming!" a frantic maid's voice cried, echoing through the servant's corridor, "The baby is coming!" Word spread quickly and soon Paige as well as a few other ladies rushed to Ms Slenie's chambers.

Her husband, a duke, paced nervously outside the dorr as it was customary the man not come in until his child was born. The poor man; his first child on the way and his wife screaming on the other side of the door... he was at loss for what to do. Paige strayed slightly behind the group and touched the man on the shoulder. Their eyes met and she told him, "Your wife and your child need you to stay strong. Take heart; all with be okay." Duke Slenie's eyes hardened with determination and he nodded before Paige turned and went into the room.

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#, as written by Aufeis
Alain shrugged a bit, "Smart, if you were not you. You, unfortunately, must learn of such things." Her second question caused him to chuckle a little. He put a hand up before she opened the door, blocking out light while his other hand pulled down the front of his cowl a bit to help his eyes adjust slowly. He had longer legs than she did, so it wasn't too difficult to keep up with her even while keeping his pace unhurried. He rubbed his chin. How old was he? He didn't usually keep track. It wasn't really important, not normally. He thought for another moment before saying, "Mid twenties. Twenty six, perhaps? I do not keep track, generally. No need to. You look to be about cresting the eve of your twentieth year. Age is not measured in time, though. Age is measured in experience. I would say that I have probably experienced twice what you have. I do not say that to look down upon you or your life. It just is. Look at where you are now, compared to myself. The lower you are on the pyramid, the quicker you experience things. I was taught to fight by necessity. If I did not learn, I would have died. I learned to steal, to pick locks, to kill, all because I did not have a choice. You hunt, but you do not look to have grown up wondering where your next slice of bread would come from...or who, in my case." He chuckled a little again, before shrugging. If she asked when the day of his birth was, he didn't know what to tell her. He had never celebrated it. All it ever signaled was another year of struggling to get by, or another year to the game, "Life is a game. However many times you have been around the board is how old you are, not how long you have played. Some are complacent to be as they are born. Others fight their fates. I was born a pauper, to a widowed and ill mother, not that she ever acted as such. If you do not want to be the heir to a kingdom, well..." He let the thought trail and shrugged. He could teach her many things, she had the potential for it. He could see it. But he didn't care one way or another. He was just fine running a solo act.