War Across Alturia[Private]

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  1. Name: Ulric Hartwood
    Age: 24



    Effects: Three throwing knifes, a hunting knife, and smoke bombs.
    Elven Blade
    Ash Recurve Bow



    Ulric's family lived in a small, peaceful town on the southwest border of Elania. The small town, warmly referred to by its people as Haven Hill, was cooled by the ocean breeze from the west and kept moist and noisture by the mountains to the south. His father was a farmer, raising beef, elk, and pig, the green landscape gifting him with success. Everything was perfect in Ulric's young life, and his future looked bright as well, being the sole heir to his father's farm.

    Ulric awoke to the sounds of screaming as his mother rushed into the room, so frantic her speech was inaudible. She pulled him to her and carried him into the kitchen. As she moved through the house, he saw the orange glow of fire through the shutters, and saw his father rushing out the front door, hollering behind him, "Put him in the cellar!" Evaline, his mother pulled open the door and told him, "Hide here and stay quiet." She then shut the door, and pulled a nearby cabinet over the hatch. That was the last he saw of his village.

    The cellar was a stone laid cool storage eight feet underground. Ulric could hear as his house burned above him, and his mother's last cry. The cellar came to feel like an oven from the heat of the fire. He busted open one of the large wine barrels, attempting to escape the heat that dried his tears before they fell. He climbed in, the displaced wine falling to the stone floor around him, and fell asleep.

    When Ulric awoke, he felt drunk from soaking in the wine all night. He tipped the barrel over, and crawled out feeling dizzy. He stumbled his way out of the cellar, almost slipping on his way up the ladder. He stepped out to view Haven Hill as he never had before. Where the houses once stood where black circles with traces of burnt beams. As he proceeded he stumbled across corpse, the sight of which made him puke. Ulric's young mind was not able to handle the grizzly scene, and he went into shock, slowly moving down the road, his eyes blank. He tripped over skinning his knees and hands, turning to examine the offender, his eyes fell upon a corpse. It was the body of someone Ulric had never met, and by the looks of his tattered clothes and unkempt body, he knew he was one of the bandits. In his hand was a sapphire necklace his mother always wore. He quickly snatched the piece, and kicked the corpse repeatedly.

    He was found several miles down the road dirty, barefoot, and still in shock by a passing merchant caravan.
    #1 Roche_777, Sep 23, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2014
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  2. Name: Kaia Reylan
    Age: 22
    Effects: (all stolen/kept from her by kidnappers)
    Her royal, yet simple tiara
    Her favorite Satchel
    Inside, it contains Her Dagger, Saphira and her mother's old bracelet
    Kaia has lived all her life inside the beautiful capital of Elania where everything seemed so pristine and perfect from the outside looking in. Of course it wasn't always that way, especially when the disputes in the north began, but Kaia was mostly unaware of that when she was younger. Her mother, Gwyneth, always tried to keep her in line and proper, so as to be very decorous and well-educated. Having a rowdy prince of an older brother, Malcolm however, she grew up always trying to find loopholes in her mother's rules. Her father laughed and even sometimes encouraged her tom-boy tendencies. Of course the King and Queen had arguments about that, but Kaia had no trouble escaping to the gardens to play swords with her brother. There were many restrictions as they got older of course and the more dangerous and unladylike weapons were kept from her. Up until the age of 15, she was trained with a dagger, Saphira. She has potential to be lethal with that blade, but she has yet to shed any blood with it on purpose. That year however, was when her mother fell ill and died by the end of the year. She gave up weaponry then and tried to be the vision her mother always wanted from her reading and lounging, but her wild spirit would not rest so she stole a bow and arrow from the armory one night and she's been training herself with it since she was twenty. She can still use her dagger and definitely prefers it, especially since her family doesn't mind it anymore. They're still protective of course, but don't mind the fact that she knows how to defend herself. King James had in fact, sent her away to the south to keep her safe, with no objection from Prince Malcolm, who was just as concerned. Unfortunately, their efforts were in vain.

    A large wooden wagon pulled by a horse wheels through the night where a captive princess sleeps. She had trouble doing so for the first few weeks, but now... she has terrors at night.

    She was always told to be careful. She knows now, watching her past self wander the grounds of the southern fort at night that she should have heeded their warnings. Hindsight is always much clearer though. She was such and idiot thinking she would be safe without any guards. She was only exploring the country, but while watching Kaia follow a firefly, she shook her head. She screamed, but Kaia couldn't hear her. There was no warning. She was simply taken, nearly without a sound, whisked away with a blow to the head and thick ropes to bind her. The men had been rough she remembered, but the sheer terror of it all only lasted a few moments. She had reached a clearing near the edge of the woods, not far from the fort. All the fireflies stopped glowing and things grew eerily quiet. her heart raced, her hands shook but before she could even move to grab her blade, she was struck and all she saw were large hands and dark faces before the blackness at the edges of her vision closed in and swallowed her...

    Kaia woke with a small gasp, sitting up from the wooden floor of a bed with bleary eyes and a bitter attitude. She was growing ever more restless each night now, for she had tried a great many ways of escape from these barbarians from Baris. You name it, she's tried it. Asking to be allowed out to pee, setting a fire, fooling the guards (adding a slight hint of seduction), spooking the horses, and the list goes on. All have failed so far but she refuses to give up for if she didn't escape, she'd be used against her father in the war she just knew it. This was important, not just for her, but for her people and even though there have been a few close calls, she is definitely no closer to escape than she was before. Her kidnappers now have her tied to the floor of the cart with her hands behind her back and her feet bound. The only remove her gag to eat. And they don't feed her more than a bit of bread here and there. It's miserable and she's been afraid here, but she isn't done fighting yet.

    A new plan was forming. The man sitting across from her in the dark snores slightly so she knows he's deeply asleep with his chin against his chest. His hand holds her satchel, that fool. It took quite a bit of patience and some flexibility for Kaia to reach the leather bag with her feet, but eventually, she tugged it gently free of one of her captor's hands and dragged it toward her. Once again, it was slow going to maneuver the bag behind her, where her hands could reach inside, but once she did, she would be free. She had waited too long now and at this point she was probably rushing a bit too much but once she cut her hands free, which was the longest bit of her steps to escape, she untied her feet and pulled off her gag as silently as possible knowing that with the sun soon to rise, the man holding the reins to the horses would be awake while she sneaked away. Kaia took careful steps to the back of the cart, but it was very dark and she could only tell where the man who was supposed to watch her was by his snores.
    That would be why she accidentally nudged his foot and tripped over it. Kaia landed on all fours. Knowing that this spelled disaster. Too much noise. Unable to check her landing place outside the prison she'd been held in for far too long, she leaped out of the back of the wagon as the 4 men who had captured her woke and gave chase.

    Kaia landed hard on rocky ground, unfortunately rolling too soon in the dark. Her left shoulder took the brunt of the impact and the princess could have sworn she heard it pop out of its socket. She held back a scream, but didn't manage very well. She was untrained when it came to keeping silent while running in the woods so in that situation, she was blind, clutching Saphira in one hand and keeping her other useless arm against her chest. It was inevitable that she would trip too many times in the dark no matter how fast she was running. By the time the band caught up with her she was scratched and bruised and her left arm hung limp Two of the men yanked on her arms and Kaia screamed louder than she'd ever screamed before, now seeing black spots that had nothing to do with the night that kept her unable to find proper footing.Though she struggled, it was weak, but she did manage to cut a few of them before she ended up lying on her back with three out of four swords pointed at her throat. They had told her once and they would tell her again. "Keep this up and you'll be dead by sunrise."
    She spit at them. What was this? the 6th..seventh time she had tried to escape? Kaia was afraid though, whimpering under her breath when they moved to drag her back...there might not be a next time.
    #2 Ravenbelle, Sep 23, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2014
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  3. Ulric had been riding a majority of the day, it was almost the anniversary of his parent's deaths, and he made a point to visit every year. After the merchants found him, they returned to the village and buried all the dead. Seven dead bandits were among the dead, they were not buried.

    Ulric lived with the caravan until he was nineteen. He learned reading, writing, and arithmetic, traveled to every major city in the world, and learn to wield a blade. The leader of the caravan, Nathan Thatcher, fostered Ulric. The man was a military veteran and after retiring chose to travel as a merchant.

    The sun was setting and Ulric had found a suitable place to lie down for the night. He made camp and laid down for the night. He fell asleep to thoughts of his parents, gazing at the starry sky.

    Haven Hill was burning all around him, and he could see his mother standing in the living room of the cabin. It was a blaze, but she made no move to evacuate. simply stared at him blankly, as the fire nipped at her hem. He tried to run to her, to save her, but his body felt so heavy, and the air was thick as water. He struggled, pushed as hard as he could, and he was finally within arms reach. He reached for her arm when she screamed in his face.

    Ulric sat up off the ground, clammy and breathing rapidly. He looked around at the smolders of a campfire, Evaline ten feet away, just a dream. Someone was yelling, no someones, and not far. He hadn't seen any nearby fires, and to be this deep in the Wilds before dawn, 'Suspicious.' He fastened his belt, secured his quiver, and sleeked into the woods bow in hand. He could hear them, just twenty yards past a thicket of deerbrush. He crept closer to observe four men roughly handling a young woman. Experience told him better then to get involved, but in the situation his mother's death was pervading his mind and struck his conscience.

    He followed them for several minutes, observing the situation. The girl seemed to be injured, all the men were armed, and one had a bow, 'Your first'. It became apparent they were moving in the direction of the road that passed over the Worthing Peaks. Thankfully no one had time to grab a torch, he took position behind a large oak, and notched an arrow. The guard with the bow was on the right arm of the girl. He couldn't risk the arrow trailing and clipping the girl, so the sure shot was out. He would aim for the right shoulder. It won't killed, but will prevent the man from drawing his bow or wielding his sword. He drew back, inhaled, lined up, exhaled, and released. The arrow cut the air and impaled itself above the shoulder blade.

    As realization came to the group, a sizzling lump rolled near the rear man feet. A quick, bright flash was followed by billows of grey smoke. Ulric notched another arrow, impaling it into the chest of the rear guard as he cleared the edge of the smoke. He moved closer, using the trees and smoke to remain unseen. Slinking behind a tree near the edge of the plume, he waited for the next target.
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  4. She knew she would have bruises like fingers on her arms tomorrow morning with the way they gripped her arms, one of which had brought a silent stream of tears during their trudge through the woods. She was so angry. The man on her right held Saphira and the man on her left had tied her crown to his belt. She had already tried tripping them and biting them, but they knew her tactics by now and yanked her hair whenever she attempted anything. "You're all going to die very terrible deaths. Your ruler deems your lives worthless and you won't even die in battle, you gruesome mongrels." Kaia snarled, knowing this wouldn't help much. She just wanted to get to them. But before they could react, Kaia heard for a split second, a whistling arrow.

    She gasped when it lodged itself in her captor to her right. Their torch fell, he let go of her right arm, and she snatched her blade back before she could be pulled left. Kaia cried out loudly when her left arm was jostled again and the smoke made her cough afterward. Whoever their attacker was, she hoped he wasn't aiming for her.
    With that, she took the distraction to her advantage and sliced her captor's chest with Saphira, drawing blood with her blade for the first time. This bastard let her go and she cut the string holding her crown to his belt, one handedly sticking it in her satchel before she started running again. Her dress, ripped at the hem, was a hindrance as she stumbled through the brush and she could hear the last men chasing her again. She headed for the road this time, panting and whimpering in the opposite direction of the wagon, clenching her jaw and gripping her dagger white knuckled to keep herself quiet. She didn't want to be shot down now that she seems to have some sort of chance to get away.
    #4 Ravenbelle, Sep 24, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2014
  5. The sky was still dark, save for a faint orange glow on the horizon, and the smoke made the are a darker still. He heard a painful grunt from one of the men. Seconds later the woman passed him on the right, stumbling through the brush. Two men emerged and gave chase after the girl, and the man with the arrow stumbled out on the left. He drew back and released, the arrow penetrating the man's rotund belly. Then he gave chase after the three. The group was loud, far easier to track than any animal. He could hear their steps, their breathing, and the brush they disturbed.

    As he pursued, the distance between him and the others lessen. He was now following behind the rear most runner. He boot snapped a stick, which caused the man in front of him to throw a glance over his shoulder. He spotted the ranger behind him, and attempted to raise the alarm, when Ulric tackled him to the ground. The rolled in the brush for a minute, both men struggling for dominance. Ulric managed to reach a mounted position. As one hand grasped the man throat, the other reached for the hunting knife fastened to his belt. He plunged the blade into the man side, who let out a scream of pain. Ulric plunged the blade into him again and again, then stood unsure where the others had gone. 'Fucking pain in the ass,' Ulric took a deep breath and sighed. He slowly pressed on, listening for a clue.
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  6. The morning was chilly and foggy, making her steps unsure. She fell a few times but didn't stop running. The pain of her shoulder jostled as she stumbled brought black spots to her vision and she slowed, whimpering with tear tracks on her cheeks. Her pursuer caught up to her then and slammed her against a tree near the edge of the woods. Kaia screamed at the agony that bloomed in her shoulder and the impact against the back of her head, but the sound was cut off by the man who pushed the breath from her lungs with a hard punch to her stomach. Kaia coughed and stared into the shadows of his eyes. This is it. She could simply - no room for hesitation.
    Kaia thrust her blade into the man's side to the hilt, her hand trembled as she felt his warm blood washed onto her hand, dribbling down to her wrist to her elbow. When she pulled it out, he fell to the ground and Kaia stumbled away from the tree and the fallen captor. He cursed at her but she wasn't listening anymore. Her ears were ringing and she fell to the ground staring at her hand with held a bloody dagger she'd grown up with. She...She'd condemned a man to death. Kaia grew lightheaded and dropped the knife, trembling in a ball on the ground, knowing there was still a deadly archer out there. At this point, there was no way she could keep running. The rising sun illuminated her pale face and terrified eyes. What had she done?
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  7. He could hear the pained curses and yells of a man behind him. There had been four men, two were dead, one had pursued the woman, and the other he had not seen since the smoke bomb went off. He had heard a yell after the smoke bomb, he must must of been injured, 'Good.' The mans voice behind him assured Ulric of the direction he had chosen. Another pained voice rang through the forest, the woman's this time. He couldn't waste anytime. He took of through the trees, trunk flying past as he swiftly swerved left then right, ducking under branches, and navigating fallen logs and bushes.

    He heard a curse to left, and halted behind a trunk. The glow of morning stretched further off the horizon, and the edge of the sun was just beginning to peak over the crest of the earth. He notched a fourth arrow, moving cautiously in the direction of the noise. As he cleared a wild hedge, the two strangers laid before him. The woman was fallen in the fetal position, the man clenching a bloody wound in his side, red running through his fingers . He was slowly crawling across the ground. Ulric released the tension on his bow, approached the injured man and kicked him onto his side. The color was beginning to drain from his face, he didn't have much time left.

    Ulric's attention moved to the woman laying in the mud, she was a mess. He approached about few meters, then halted. Looking her over from a distance he could see her clothes were not only dirty but tattered, though at one point they had probably been quite beautiful. As he moved closer he saw the blood, which quickened his step as he came to kneel behind her. "Hey, are you, ok?" He rolled her towards him and onto her back, quickly checking for serious wounds.
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  8. Kaia panted on the ground, covered in scratches and bruises that weren't felt beyond the pain in her left shoulder and head. She was lying on her right unable to look away from her hand that was sticky with drying blood in front of her. It was becoming increasingly difficult to focus her vision and she felt a slow tiredness crawl over her, attempting to numb her and steal her consciousness on the cold foggy ground of the early morning.
    When she heard footsteps, the princess cringed, but stayed transfixed on her hand. She heard someone approach her, then stop, then rush forward again to kneel beside her. Dark eyes glanced up at the man she supposed had been the mysterious archer. He was blurry at first, but then suddenly thrown into clear focus when he rolled her onto her side using the shoulder she wasn't lying on. Kaia cried out again, tensing up under his touch that sent shock waves of agony through her upper body. He asked her something she was sure, but she couldn't listen all that well while breathing hard and scrambling away from the stranger. Her red hand picked up her bloody dagger and pointed toward him, shaking in her grasp. Her eyes were wild and scared, attempting to put distance between them when every movement brought her excruciating pain from her left.
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  9. He wasn't able to see any obvious wounds, but just as quick as he had moved her, she had pulled away. He noticed the tenderness of her arm when he rolled her. She had certainly been through a lot, whatever the hell the situation was that landed her here.

    He stood, placing his hands on his hips, amused by the girls weak threat. 'Right, I save your life, and you want to stab me.' Ulric took a minute to continue checking for wounds, as she held the dagger his direction. Definitely babying the left arm, and the blood was only on her hands. She would be fine for now. Her dress was Thurian made, he had handled plenty of them with the caravan. A Thurian dress of that quality meant she was probably of noble birth, a knight or lords daughter. She definitely had the features of a noble despite the dirt and twigs. 'Still pointing the dagger...'

    "Not very friendly are we? Well, your welcome, and I'll be on my way." Ulric turned and walked the other way. She wants to point things at people, then she can stare at trees lost for a minute. Besides, there was still the yelling bastard from earlier to take care of.

    Ulric had so many questions running through his head as he walked in the direction he had come. What the hell were four men, and noble woman doing in the middle of the Wilds? He really didn't feel like talking to the panicked girl; who was hopefully rethinking her approach wandering around the Wilds. He walked in the direction of the road, figuring the group probably had a carriage or at least some horses. A muffled yell from his one o'clock told him he was walking in the right direction.

    He felt bad for leaving the girl behind as he walked. She was just scared, but he didn't have much practice dealing with people as of late. 'She'll get over it.' This was certainly gonna derail his plans.
  10. With the lightening day, Kaia could see the stranger's amusement in her silent threat as he stood, looking down at her with his hands on his hips. He paused a moment, but she didn't move her blade away. What reason did he have for showing her kindness anyway? He was probably a ranger, a nomad maybe with no allegiance to her if he even recognized who she was without her crown.
    And this was clearly demonstrated by his decision to leave her as soon as he'd come. Kaia gasped under her breath at his abrupt dismissal of her and watched the rude archer walk past her in the direction of the carriage she'd been brought here with. Her arm fell to her side and she sheathed her dagger, placing it back in her satchel since the danger seemed absent for now. The princess was still disoriented and scared, but there was no time to sit down and cry about it. She had never been treated so terribly since she'd been kidnapped and she had also never experienced this much physical pain in one night, but she had no choice but to think her way out of it if she was going to survive. What were her options?
    1. Walk back along the road with no supplies or sufficient know-how on living in the woods and hopefully hitch a ride home
    2. Die
    3. Steal the cart and find a way back to her kingdom
    None of them were easy and none of them were desirable, but the smartest choice was the last. Being all alone really is quite miserable. She missed her brother picking her up when she fell, she missed her books to distract her from the reality of war, she missed her father's contagious smile. But she would never see them again if she didn't take the reins of a stolen cart and make her own way home.

    So, Kaia made up her mind, took a deep breath and stood, holding onto the trees to keep her dizziness from taking over as she walked, following the archer who had left her behind. It was tough going, and not very quick either, but she hoped to arrive back to the vessel that had brought her all the way out to who-knows-where before it was stolen by the archer. Surely that was the only reason he attacked. Too bad he has no idea that the only precious cargo on that wagon was her.

    By the time she caught up to the vague shadow of a man with a quiver on his back, Kaia was panting and whimpering again, trying to ignore the pain as much as possible. If he could just set her shoulder back to its rightful place, she could be on her way, right? It was desperate and embarrassing, but she had to try.
    "Wait! Please!" She called, pleading as her legs gave out by her latest support tree. "I need only a small favor and then you'll be rid of me, please stop."
    #10 Ravenbelle, Sep 24, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2014
  11. I was suppose to be visiting my parent's graves, not whatever this is. He hadn't been walking long when he began to hear movement in the forest behind him. Loud shuffling and the snapping of twigs, one accustomed to the silence of the forest found such noises unnecessarily loud. He slowed his pace, allowing the woman to catch up.

    'She has some fight left.' This would make things easier. Much better to deal with a desperate but determined woman, then a scared one in shock wielding a knife.

    "Wait! Please!", he turned unable to ignore the girl's plea, "I need only a small favor and then you'll be rid of me, please stop." She was slumped to the ground, a sight that would soften any heart. He had a decision to make, help the injured and scared girl in front of him, or pursue the last man. There was no helping it.

    "Looks like the last one got away." He moved to the woman's side, "You put the knife away," sarcasm flowing through his words. She was a mess, Ulric empathized with her condition. The kneel down and felt her shoulder, avoiding eye contact. He could feel the ball of her shoulder, definitely a dislocation. He grabbed a nearby stick, holding it near her face, "Bite." He placed one hand one her side, high into the armpit, her body feeling 'soft' under his weathered palm. He secured her upper arm with his other. "Breathe. Ok, on the count of three." Without hesitating or counting he pulled her arm straight out, and released. The bones scrape across each other then settle into their original place.
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  12. Kaia let out a sigh of relief when the archer decided to turn back and help her. Without that, she might actually die out here. There's still a chance she will anyway, but resetting her shoulder will at least increase the chances of survival.
    The princess met his eyes from the ground feeling very strange and scared to be looking up at someone instead of the other way around. He really has no clue who she is or what happened here, huh? Well, all the better.

    Though she wasn't happy to hear that one of her captors got away. It wasn't terribly concerning because if she got away with the cart, he wouldn't catch up with her, but still. The archer knelt on her left side, knowing what she would have asked for after sarcastically stating that she'd sheathed her weapon. Kaia glared slightly, but knew it to be unwise so she just stared at the ground, cringing and whimpering whenever he put any amount of pressure on her dislocated shoulder. The princess blinked, new tears trickling down the paths already before she grabbed the stick with her teeth. Unsanitary, but necessary. She could get used to that. She's not that bratty or spoiled. Tensing up when he placed his hands on her, Kaia mentally prepared for the pain. She wasn't used to anything this bad before. So this preparation probably wouldn't even help, but she had to something before he replaced her bone under the black and blue flesh. That as bound to be excruciating and dreadful.

    The Princess of Elania listened to the ranger, gulped, breathed as she was told and tried to slightly relax in his grasp before---
    No warning. The surprise along with the instant Agony that came with it, made sure she uttered no sound. Kaia was frozen in his grasp and the stick was dropped to the ground while she screamed silently, mouth open, but breath absent. A fresh torrent of tears dripped from her wide, doe eyes to her chin once her shoulder was snapped back into its rightful place. Exactly 6 seconds from that point, the pain among other things dragged her into unconsciousness. She slumped forward onto the stranger, eyes closed, body limp. She was clearly not going to wake for quite a bit.
    #12 Ravenbelle, Sep 25, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2014
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  13. Dead weight fell on to Ulric, the girl was unconscious. 'Cuz, this wasn't a pain in the ass enough, huh?' though he couldn't really begrudge her none given the trauma she'd had been through. No choice but to move her to camp. He pulled a black string around his neck out of his shirt revealing a small silver whistle and placed it between his lips. He placed one arm under the girl's knees and the other behind her back. He held her battered frame against his chest and pressed on through the forest.

    He no longer could hear the man's voice in the wind. To the east the sun had fully crested the horizon now, Ulric catching glimpses of it where the canopy thinned. His campsite was about a mile north, thankfully downhill. Ulric blew the whistle between his lips, not sound was made. He let the whistle fall and continued his trek, the woman in his arm making for slow travel. He stole a few glance at her as he walked. She was beautiful even in her present state. His thoughts trailed, and he had to snap himself back into focus. A couple minutes later, Evaline his most trusted friend approached, snorting and bobbing her head in greeting.

    He was able to lay the woman across the horse's back, which made the trip much easier own his own. When they reached camp, he laid her in the spot he had early woken from, a needle and leaf pile. He stoked the coals of last nights fire, and added fresh wood. Well she could be asleep for a while, so Ulric decided to make his time productive. He took Evaline and made a quick run back to the road, then followed it north closer to the base of Worthing Peaks. Roughly four miles up the road he came across the abandoned carriage. It seemed the escape party had unlatched the horse and road off, probably fearing for his life. Ulric pulled some of the food from the carriage to fill his sack, and a small bag of coins he found tucked under a change of clothes.

    His 'guest' was still asleep when he returned, he dismounted Evaline and pulled the saddle bags. He'd best find some more wood, and refill his drinking bladder while he was free. Ulric left the camp, looking forward to the relaxing walk after all the excitement.

    The forest was quiet and peaceful, the way it should of been. He managed to find a small creek to fetch water from. After collecting the water, and took the opportunity to wash himself. He took a moment to just sit and relax propped against a tree on the edge of the creek. It had been quite the 'exciting' morning, and he continued to think about the girl back at camp. He should head back before she wakes up.

    Ulric walked back into camp with an armful of wood and a satchel of wild strawberries he collected of the way. He put more wood on the fire, placed the strawberries in the saddle bag, and removed an apple and piece of salted meat. Propping himself against a log, he ate while watching the beautiful woman sleep. "What have we gotten ourselves into, Evaline?" The horse looked at him blankly, "Fine, don't talk to me." He chuckled as he took another bite out of his half finished apple.
    #13 Roche_777, Sep 25, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
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  14. Kaia gained her senses back slowly as she woke. It was not a quick awakening, for her body refused to feel anything but sluggish and heavy in the morning light. Sometimes she drifted in and out of consciousness, but it was never really obvious of when she was awake or not because she didn't open her eyes. The kids were weighed down, or at least they felt like they were.

    First came the touches, the light sensation of whatever she was lying on was not soft, but thick enough to be comfortable, though she knew her body would have lied nearly anywhere to sleep now. The smell of the woods around her was no surprise either but the sounds that reached her were strange. It was as if the world was waking with her and the volume of the noises around her increased and gained clarity at a snail's pace. Birds were chirping in the morning sunlight slightly invading the darkness om the inside of her eyelids. She heard the cracking fire and the grazing of an herbivore nearby before footsteps came crunching into the area. Kaia's eyes shifted even while closed, searching without seeing and dazedly wondering about where she was and what was going on. Then she heard a man's voice and the crunch of biting into an apple.

    That was when she felt she could finally move. Her eyebrows furrowed slightly and a nearly inaudible groan hardly made it past her lips. Kaia took a deep breath and her fingers twitched before she gulped and her eyes fluttered open. She had to blink a few times to get used to the morning light filtering through the trees. She was silent and afraid to move much for her pain would stay at this bearable level if she stayed still. Her head hurt, but it wasn't pounding yet. Her shoulder ached, but nothing sharp sliced through her. She stared up at the trees and watched the wildlife with half lidded eyes above her.

    She knew she should be concerned about where she was and how she got here, but at the moment, she decided to wait. She wasn't ready for whatever would transpire when she spoke.
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  15. Ulric finished his apple core and all, and continued to chew on the piece of salted beef. 'If she is from one of the nearby towns I should still be able to make it to Haven Hill. What is she doing out here in the first place?' Ulric had taken the time examine the bag of coins as he ate. Inside were eleven pieces of gold, a substantial amount for men like that to carry. If he assumed they were paid to kidnap this girl, it would be reasonable to think this was an upfront portion. Probably used some to pay for their expenses. With a front of this value, the payoff could of been substantial. 'Is this woman really worth that much?' Her dress was certainly expensive, and the decor of her dagger echoed the same. 'What have I gotten myself into now.'

    The woman across the fire stirred slightly, pulling Ulric from his train of thought. Was she waking up? What should he do? This was a little more difficult then it should of been he thought. She was probably hungry and certainly in a lot of pain. He retrieved the satchel of strawberries, the last apple, a roll, and the water bladder. Walking near the girl, he looked down at her, her eyes were open. He set down the apple, satchel and bladder in the dirt and balanced the roll on the satchel. "You should eat something." He then retreated back, and stood against a nearby tree, arms crossed and head down.

    She wasn't going to be able to travel today, so they would be stuck here another night, but Ulric still needed to know what he had gotten himself into. Looked up at the girl, observing her movements, "Who are you, and why were these men paid to kidnap you?" Ulric found the direct approach the simplest in tense or awkward situations.
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  16. Kaia listened quietly as the man from last night finished his apple and then approached her. She watched the archer while he looked down at her before setting down a few things to eat. She turned her head to look at them on her bed of pine needles, smelling strawberries when she saw bread and apple. She couldn't remember eating such delicious looking fruit in a month or so. There was also a bladder filled with water and if it wasn't for her brother she'd have had no idea what it was. She agreed with his suggestion to eat, and met his eyes with a grateful stare before he put his head down. Why was he so kind to her? Had he realized who she was maybe by looking through her things? Did he intend to help her further?
    Her satchel is still at her side and apparently undisturbed but she couldn't be sure. Did he want something from her? Or did he already have it? She felt her satchel with her right hand, feeling through the fabric for all of her things. A tiny smile crawled onto her lips when she felt the bracelet at the very bottom of the bag. She wanted to wear it along with her crown, but she wasn't yet sure if this man knew her so her eyes flicked up and she met his gaze when he next spoke.
    She was at first unsure of what to say For she had no idea who he was or what his intentions were. She didn't trust him yet so she would have to keep her identity a secret. There's no telling what he'he'd do with her if he knew of her royal blood.
    She had to come up with an alias. Something believable. So while she drew up her strength to sit up, she thought up a name and a slight backstory. If she later thought him trustworthy, she could tell him the truth.

    Her shoulder gave her quite a bit of trouble when she sat up, only putting weight on her right arm. She could feel the bruises and see the scabs now. Her hand was still red in some places. Kaia gulped and blinked away the dizziness, pulling her legs to lay bent and facing one direction as they should even in her tattered skirts. Kaia bit her lip took a deep breath and watched her savior's blue eyes nervously.
    "My name is Adelaine, only daughter of Elania's second duchess Evskine. I'm...not sure why I was kidnapped. I didn't know they were paid. I suspected it was to collect ransom..." Kaia answered, glancing down at her lap before returning his gaze again. "Who are you?"
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  17. A dutchess heir, certainly in the realm of noblilty, but was she truly so ignorant of her captors motives, he couldn't be sure. "Who are you?" A coy smile curled the edge of his lips and he chuckled under his breath. "I'm the guy who saved your life and your only chance at making it out of these Wilds. And if you want my help, it would behoove you to not make things anymore difficult for me than you already have." Ulric didn't mean for that to come out so rudely, but he was frustrated and annoyed being forced into such a messed up situation. He let out a long sigh, trying to recover from his snark comment.

    "Look, your in no condition to travel, so we will camp here 'til tomorrow. Finish eating, then I'll take you to a creek to get washed up. You should rest and take it easy for today." He should try to be patient. He had no way of knowing what trauma she had been subjected to or for how long. For now he would let her collect herself, but later he had more questions he wanted answered. He stepped a few paces from the tree, arms still crossed, then turned to Adelaine, "I would feel guilty leaving you to die, so I will help you, on two conditions though. First, I'm in charge of when and how we move, and second, you will tell me everything you know later. For the kind of gold being paid for you, more people may be coming and that puts my life at risk. I won't be dying for you."

    'Still coming out harsh. Damn, I suck at this.' Ulric turned and stepped away from the fire a bit, sitting near a tree fifteen yards from Adelaine.
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  18. Kaia pouted when he decided he wouldn't answer her question. What would she call him if he was going to be stubborn and rude about giving her something as simple as a first name? In the palace, this sort of behavior around her would not be tolerated and the feeling of being highly respected had been dwindling ever since she was kidnapped.
    But the mysterious archer did give her something. Wilds. Was she in the Worthing Wilds? She was afraid to ask, afraid to know if she was really that far from home. Why did the world have to be so greedy? Didn't those soldiers realize that if their kingdom won the war, they'd be bringing rivers of blood and death before the fertile land could even be claimed? Was it really worth all of that? Kaia was sure that it wasn't. She gulped, but flicked her gaze back up to the stranger who saved and fed her when he sighed.

    It was obvious that she wasn't going to be able to travel, so even though she wanted to be stubborn about it and trek on anyway, she was glad he was kind enough to stay here and recognize her pain. She looked forward to washing, even if it was to be cold water and mud at the bottom. She had been required to bathe at least thrice while on her trip here and the way they stared still sent shivers up her spine. She longed for the warm baths that had been drawn by her eager servants back at the castle. So she nodded in understanding.

    "I would feel guilty leaving you to die, so I will help you, on two conditions though. First, I'm in charge of when and how we move, and second, you will tell me everything you know later. For the kind of gold being paid for you, more people may be coming and that puts my life at risk. I won't be dying for you."

    Well...nice to know you're only here because you pity me. It would be difficult to get used to taking orders and doing as she's told from a mere ranger, but she would do it if she could get back to her father, her home. And then he'll realize who she really is. And he'll be sorry.
    Kaia sighed and bit her lip knowing he had saved her life. That's definitely worth something, but it didn't make up for absolutely everything afterward. He gave her food. She should forget about all this royal stuff. She wasn't a noble out here. There was no population to take care of. No reason to give orders and blame others.
    So the princess in disguise simply nodded and, in an effort to rid herself of her headache, she ate. She could only use one arm since the other hung limp, black and blue at the shoulder. She could still hear the bones scraping against each other and shivered. Wiping off the bits of dried blood on her hand from last night onto her dress proved the only method she could use to avoid tasting his blood in her food. She suppressed the memory of killing the man for later. If she thought about it now, no good would come from it.

    The roll was much better than the stale bread they'd fed her on the cart. The strawberries were fresh and ripe, wonderfully dying her hand red in a shade of red that wasn't blood crimson. Her headache faded with the fruit and she had some water after stashing the apple in her own satchel. She felt a bit guilty for taking his food, but she knew she could sufficiently pay him back if he actually ended up escorting her home. She just hoped they could make it there in one piece.
    "Thank you. I'm honestly grateful for your kindness, though I do wish I had a name by which to call you, sir.." Kaia smiled slightly, hoping she'd feel okay enough to walk to the creek he mentioned.
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  19. Ulrif stared off into the trees, finishing the last of the salted meat he had been eating earlier. He would have to escort Adelaine back to her home, or at least close enough. It had been two years since he had traveled with a companion. A man name William, who Ulric had met in a pub one night. Ulric had come across some good coin and treated himself to some mead. A brawl broke out behind him, and Ulric was swept into the violence. Somehow or another, too drunk to really remember, William and himself came to be allies in the fight. Ulric journeyed with William for a season, who himself was a bard. The man a laugh to have around.

    He thought about those days, and the journey he was about to begin. He should probably try to be more friendly, but what does one do in these circumstances. Ulric twiddled at a branch as he waited for Adelaine to finish eating. "Thank you. I'm honestly grateful for your kindness, though I do wish I had a name by which to call you, sir.." Guess that was a good enough place to start.

    Ulric turned and faced Adelaine his hood back, and black hair falling around his face, "My name is Ulric Hartwood. If my words have offended you I apologize, but rescuing you wasn't exactly in my plans for today." He stood and approached the woman. He handed the branch he had been fooling with over to his companion, "Here, this will help keep you steady." He had taken the time to shave the bark, and remove any branches and knots. " If you are ready I can show you to the creek."
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  20. Kaia looked up a few times as she ate with a fading headache. He seemed a bit lost in thought, maybe making a choice. She wondered what he was thinking of, what decision he made. When he next looked to her, she could see his face more clearly. He had taken off his hood and now she could see the handsome contrast between his light eyes and dark hair as he introduced himself. She did not recognize his name, nor had she heard it before. She wondered where he was from and why he decided to change his attitude now.

    She nodded with her lower lip between her teeth, wondering what his plans were before he found her. Kaia watched him somewhat warily as he approached and took the stick graciously, smiling a little at his thoughtful gesture. She wished she could use both arms to stand up. Kaia nodded and took a breath, holding it as she leaned forward and started to stand. She had to grit her teeth and blink a lot to keep her left side still and stop seeing double. The princess nodded again, steadying her stance and leaning on the sort of cane he'd given her. She stepped forward and looked at him, waiting for her to lead her there.
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