Explosion in the Commonlands

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TinweSaa
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Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by TinweSaa » 05/23/16

The LC finished reading the report on an explosion at the far west end of the Commonlands overnight. The knot that had already been in the pit of her stomach since last night tightened. She looked at the tinkered time piece on her desk. Rufinus would have at least checked in. He was a teenager, but he was with Ivanson who would make him be responsible. 

“VC, Command please.”

Tajar was pacing the hallway in her home. She had not yet been to bed, because Ivanson had not returned. Ivanson always returned, or at least let her know if he wasn't going to make it home in time. She didn't even know where he'd gone this time.

Arquenniel's voice over the badge broke the silence. Tajar halted, hesitating before replying. "On my way." Letting the nanny know that she was leaving, she tapped her badge, arriving only moments later in Command where she found the LC waiting.

“Have you heard from Ivanson?” There is a brief flash of concern and worry on the LC's face before settling to neutral.

Tajar felt her throat tighten at the question. "No... he never came home... He did not tell me where he was going though." She paused, before asking. "Do you know where he is?"

The LC turns the device in her hand on and presses a series of buttons. “I had tracking devices made and added to the children's pins after the twins had been kidnapped.” She taps her badge and speaks clearly, “All available Knights, any rank, form up in the Courtyard, mounted double time.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The group flew over the Commonlands in formation following the LC. The further west they flew, the larger and tighter the knot in her stomach. The group landed in front of the cave that was once Cyphaer's prison. However, there had been an obvious cave in. She speaks into her badge with little hesitation, “Skenk, I need 3 conscription crews and equipment to move large rocks from this cave in, now.”

The Ogre grunted, “Ma'am, yes, Ma'am.”

It took some time for the crews and equipment to arrive. Once they did get there, the arduous task of digging out the cave in began.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

At first, Tajar stayed back to let the crews work. But they seemed to be going so slowly. Her husband was stuck in there. She dismounted and strode over to the cave in, grabbing rocks and boulders and clearing what she could by hand. Even with her help, it was a long task but they continued until they unearthed the first body. Tajar knew at a glance that the boy was gone, and for too long for her to bring him back. She carefully picked him up and brought him clear of the rubble, to lay him on the grass. She looked over at the LC and shook her head once. There was nothing she could do. 

The only outward sign the LC made was to shift in her saddle a bit as she took in a deep breath.

The VC turned away, to head back into the rubble where the conscripts were pulling free a second body. Tajar's breath caught in her throat. She stumbled to a stop as they brought Ivanson's body and laid it next to the other. She dropped to her knees beside him, touched his dusty face.

"No... no, no, no..."

But he too, was gone.

The LC shifted in her saddle a bit once more, “Take them back to The Rock.”

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by Inqe » 05/23/16

Crataegus nods at the order and sees to the bundling of the bodies and loading onto mounts. He personally ensures that they are swiftly brought to the Rock and then carried to the morgue. He also details two squires to remain on guard until dismissed or relieved.

"Commanders, thems secureds."

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by TinweSaa » 05/23/16

"Thank you, Knight. Dismissed." She gave orders to pack it in and head back to Freeport. The LC sat on the back of her steed and watched in silence.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by TinweSaa » 05/25/16

While the bodies were being prepared, the LC headed home. There were eight siblings at home who needed to know and her husband. She sat heavily on the bench as she stripped off her armor and put on civilian garb. This was a hard loss for them all...

In the meanwhile, both bodies were cleaned up, examined and prepared. Once they were done, they were placed in Knights Circle in the Courtyard.

The conversation in the household had been hard, but it was done. Next she needed to head over to Ariaha's to tell her. So she made her way there.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by Tajar » 05/25/16

Tajar stood motionless in the Knights Circle.

She had always known that she would outlive him. For that reason she had resisted his advances at first. That, and that at the time she had felt like a crippled old woman, not fully recovered from her sudden return to mortality. But his gentle persistence had won her over. Together they had recovered from their ordeals. She had adapted to his Human ways, integrated herself into Freeportian society as if she had been born there. Gone was the opulent life of an Ilharess, she had enjoyed their simple life and his steady hand to guide her. She had always known she would outlive him. But he was supposed to die of old age in his sleep, with her at his side.

If anyone spoke to her she didn't notice. Her dark eyes seemed transfixed on a scene only she could see. She was unresponsive, lost in a well of grief.

She had always known that she would outlive him. But now how could she live at all?

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by Inqe » 05/25/16

Crataegus, was not old for a Ratonga, but he had been in the militia, one way or the other, as soon as they had let him join. His longest posting before being reassigned to the Third had been to the Commonlands Regulars, as a consequence the stolid male had seen plenty of loss. So despite being dismissed, he simply went to ensure his armor was clean and in good repair before returning to stand as part of the honor guard around Knight's Circle.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by TinweSaa » 05/27/16

After she finished delivering the news to her family, the LC seemed to disappear for a bit. She was not far though. She sat on the roof of The Rock looking out over the city and the blanket of stars that had descended. Loss was not a new experience for her, but this one hurt more than others. She had adopted Rufinus out of respect and in honor of his father, one of her fallen Hussars. She and the boy had grown close. She taught him the art of swordplay and the tactics of war. He taught her about resilience and perseverance. She would make a visit to Deathfyst to honor her son though. The trip she promised when he was ready, but death came for him instead.

Ivanson adopted her as a daughter informally. She resisted at first worried she was somehow disrespecting her own father. Eventually, she gave in though. He was a good man and cared for and her children. So many conversations, words of wisdom, and gifts of insight passed between them. She had grown comfortable with Ivanson stepping in for her own father. She would talk to Tajar and Kairya about scattering his ashes from the air ship to honor him.

For the time being though, she sat on the roof lost in her own thoughts and memories as she watched Freeport sleep in the stillness of the night.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by Morenin » 05/27/16

Morenin walked towards the Knight's circle silently, face grim. The bulky half teir looked down at the slender boy at his side. They made an odd pair, the eight year old looking fragile, like he might blow away in a strong wind compared to his tall father. The N'Tal runt some called Trastan, though not in his father's hearing.

Rufinus never had. And now he was gone. The boy took a shuddering breath, attracting the lieutenant's sharp black eyes.

"You can do this, Trast." Reassurance or maybe an order from Morenin. The boy nodded slightly, and then they stepped forward and up, coming to stand next to Tajar. Morenin released his son's hand, saluting the Vice Commander silently. Trastan paid no attention to the adults, eyes fastened on his unmoving schoolmate in the circle.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by Ethard » 05/27/16

A soft patter of stealth feet. Too large for a child, too small for most adults. The mystery resolved itself as the blond wood elf appeared next to Arquenniel. Ethard hesitated, brown eyes large with compassion out of place in Freeport, at least for anyone but him. Finally, he lunged at Arquenniel, hugging her tightly, wordlessly.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by TinweSaa » 05/27/16

The LC looked up after Ethard appeared and then looked surprised at the hug. She hugged him back though. She had grown fond of the medic over the years. He had proven reliable and loyal no matter the circumstances. He even tried helping her get the twins back when they were kidnapped. She let him sit on the roof of The Rock with her. She really had no words to express herself at the moment.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by Tajar » 05/31/16

Ivanson had always loved the sea, and had spent much of his life on it. Tajar and Kairya had decided it fitting that he be returned to the sea he loved. Knowing of Arquenniel's Zekian beliefs, she had offered to include Rufinus in the funeral and the Lady Commander agreed. As was typically Human custom, they had attended a service for them before having them transported to Gorowyn.

Ivanson had owned property there, including a long sweeping private beach on which they had married years ago. At the water's edge two small boats held the bodies of Ivanson and Rufinus, laid carefully on a bed of wild heather and sea grasses above an unlit pyre of cedar.

Tajar looked over at the others. Everything that had needed to be said already had at the service. None of them seemed to have words now. She looked at the two boys chosen for the send off. Ivanar was not far off manhood and was growing like a weed. His unruly light blonde hair was combed neatly for a change, pale against his dusky skin and black eyes. Beside him stood a boy a few years younger, dark auburn hair and blue eyes, Thanion Karr, the LC's son. Both stood quiet and ready with their bows.

Tajar then turned back to the boats and nodded to Tariyel who stood next to Rufinus' vessel. The tall woman was also quietly sombre. Despite being one of the younger children, her accelerated growth had let her have a brief time with Rufinus among her peers before she surged on to adulthood and left them all behind. Most of the children of the Rock were close, even if not related. Rufinus had been her friend.

Tajar gave Ivanson's boat a shove, pushing it into the water. She went in a few steps herself, ignoring the fact that the salt water would ruin her grey silk dress. Once she was sure it had cleared the bank, she gave it another push. Tariyel went through similar motions with the other boat, then they both stood waist deep in the sea watching the vessels drift off on the current. When they were far enough out, Tajar turned and nodded to the boys. Ivanar and Thanion lit the tips of their arrows in a small brazier nearby, then fired. There was a thwunk as the arrows hit the boats. Their aims had been true and the flames grew on the boats. Before long both were engulfed by flames fanned by the sea winds.

Both women backed out of the water, and Tajar stayed on the shore watching until the floating pyres were out of sight.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by TinweSaa » 05/31/16

The previous evening had been an odd one at the Karr household. Arquenniel had returned home from Soulfire early followed by D’Ron shortly after. The kids had all been settled into bed before the pair disappeared to the master suite. Of course, the children did not stay in their beds. Their parents needed them right now. At least, they were certain this was the case. However, the usual open door policy to the master suite was not available and protected by the butler and nannies. Their mother was notoriously private when it came to emotional situations. This would be no exception especially with the final rites planned for the next day.

The LC was silent as a stone and surrounded by the rest of the children as she watched the proceedings. Thanion looked to his mother right before he lit his arrow. She nodded to him and he continued. He looked a lot like her father. At least what she remembered of him. She watched as the arrows found their mark on both boats and erupted in flames.

Thanion put his bow away and walked over to his mother. She slipped an arm around his shoulders and pulled him to her. He and Rufinus had been close. They were the two responsible for changing out the Frostfell tree decorations for LDL Action Figures all the time. He laid his head against his mother as a few tears escaped. He was far from his mother’s level of stoicism in the face of tragedy.

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Re: Explosion in the Commonlands

Post by DRonKarr » 05/31/16

Sneaking silently out of the Manner house, patient and long suffering personal bodyguard Devon in tow, the tiny white ratonga headed out though Freeport then into the Commonlands astride her reptilian mount. The Saddlebags bulged with packed items, and Devon's steed bore a shovel and pick. Not quite so uncommon a load for these two. Weasia had a tendency to be nocturnal, but her parents accepted that, and didn't worry too much as long as the journies were limited to a reasonable distance and she was always with a bodyguard accompaniment.

She hovered her sokokar on the hillside above the partially cleared, collapsed cave and then selected a spot, landing there. Walking to the small relatively flat spot she and Devon began digging, then collected rocks to make a small barrow, into which she placed one of the houses Lucan D'Lere action figures, a small model cannon, one of Ruffis's shirts and a sock purloined from Ivanson, a slice of cheese and bottle of fizzlepop, a few other odds and ends including a glowing ball for light, then sealed the enterence and she and Devon covered it with dirt and placed a flat-ish round stone on top. She pulled out a couple of cloth padded jars from the saddle bags, and walked back to the mound, opening them up she carefully turned them upside down and gently shook out the contents onto the flat round stone. Some moss, glowing phosphorous tree bark, semi colorfull river polished stones and then a praying mantis crawled out, walking over three various sized butterfly cocoons before it took off. She arranged them artifully then stood up and waved at the sky, before remounting the steed and taking off again, not saying a word as Devon, shovel and pick repacked, hurried to catch up again with her.

Back at the mansion, she headed straight to her own bed, and crawled in , pulling the covers over her though she did not sleep.

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