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Trials and Travels (Semi-lit)

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"Aoi, right? I've seen you around. Your hair is kind of hard to forget." Aoi subconsciously put his hand to his hair, then smiled, as he realized why. "Mhmm, it's not hard to miss. So are you," He noted, running a gaze over her stiff uniform and long boots, then eyed the sword at her waist. Did all the people of Frigid dress like that? He hadn't been there before; it was too cold for him, and so he had no idea. "Someone as pretty as you shouldn't be walking around everywhere; it attracts too much attention." He joked.

 

"Is there something going on? Is Whisper taking action against the exile of our Elements?" She asked. The question took no surprise from him and he simply shrugged and brought his arms up behind his head. "I'm not saying anything. Then how about we go inside first? The girl may have escaped already, then we'll all be in trouble. You coming, kid?" He directed his question to Jahan, but turned and headed towards the inside of the building.

 

(( I really don't know what to write; it's hard without Jahan answering anything. ))

Edited by lachrymation

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((a bit long, as it is a catch-up post for Jahan :3))

 

~Jahanshah~

 

"My Lord Jahanshah!" Jahan's small smile widened as she recognized his title. He watched her drop to her knees rather hastily. It must have hurt a bit on the stone ground. "I don't mean any disrespect, but why are you in Cumulus? I was hesitant to come here myself. But I'm left without a decision, I ran out of rations..."

 

Jahanshah gave her a puzzled look, though he was pleased to see her. She was capable, loyal and a warrior. He was used to travelers not quite knowing how to address nobility or that you shouldn't open your sentence with a question of motives. He was vaguely aware that Aoi had come up behind him, so he assumed something had been done with the girl. "Cumulus is a neutral city, remember?" He told Promise. "There's no reason I can't be here... though I suppose my new appearance confused you. You see, it would look very suspicious if a noble from Metallum was to come to Cumulus." Jahan opened his mouth to keep speaking but stopped as Aoi tugged his sleeve to get his attention. He wasn't used to being summoned in such a way and he turned with just a bit of indignation to Aoi, but the look quickly faded when he saw Aoi's face.

 

"There's a bit of trouble. The girl's locked herself in some room on the second level; if she finds a way to escape our plan might be endangered." Jahan's eyes widened. This was indeed bad news. Where was Betzalel? Had Aoi even found him? Whatever the case, Jahan realized he would have to find and deal with the girl. Having been raised as a legend and not a boy, he had no strange feelings towards the situations and in fact planned to deal with her much as he would a young servant who had stumbled and dropped a valuable plate, shattering it. Not too harshly, but not in a friendly way either. Aoi's look told him that Aoi hadn't been planning to storm in and scare the girl. Since Aoi had brought the matter to his attention, Jahan simply assumed it was now his task to find her. He wondered how she had escaped from Aoi in the first place, but he didn't ask.

 

Jahanshah stared in the direction of the hotel, looking up at the second-floor rooms. There is no way she would go out the window; she would expect someone to be waiting for her there. Wouldn't she? She could be afraid of falling, but Jahan didn't consider fear of heights as something that would stop her; so far as he knew, people his age acted like him and Aamina, or like a timid servant who did what they were told. He hadn't ever really had any friends his age, as his mother had wanted him to mature quickly and had placed him with mature people. "Is there something going on? Is Whisper taking action against the exile of our Elements?"

 

Jahanshah turned sharply back to look at Promise, then glanced at the hotel again before setting his gaze on Promise. She looked determined and ready to assist them. Jahanshah had missed her conversation with Aoi, as he was mostly interested in stopping someone from ruining their plans in Cumulus. "I'm not saying anything. Then how about we go inside first? The girl may have escaped already, then we'll all be in trouble. You coming, kid?"

 

Again Jahanshah felt slightly insulted because he had intended to answer Promise first, but then he reminded himself that in public here he wasn't a prince... and Aoi was kind of Jahan's favorite person to be around. Not an idol, not even a role-model or best friend... just really cool. Perhaps a best friend, if Jahan had known what a best friend was. Perhaps a role-model, if Jahanshah had looked up to anyone but the Queen Zillah. But to him, there were three kinds of people; superiors, inferiors, and comrades. So Jahan turned towards Aoi and Promise, deciding that the way they spoke was probably the way of travelers and meant no insult. He definitely knew Aoi didn't mean any insult.

 

"Of course," he said, "but let me go first. Perhaps you intimidate her, Aoi. I am more her age and she might not understand travelers like you." He walked quickly to catch stride with Aoi as he spoke. He pretty much ignored Promise, as she wasn't yet his friend or comrade and so he naturally considered her beneath him. it was just habit, after so many years of living that way. After a moment of silence he nodded in her direction as he spoke. "Our guest here, Promise, is loyal to the Queen and is much like you in her traveling style." He hadn't listened to Aoi and Promise so he didn't realize they already knew each other. "You may tell her what we are doing, if you deem her trustworthy. I will deal with the girl. Stay here on the first floor."

 

[Assuming Aoi showed him which room,] Jahanshah knocked lightly on the door. He had already decided this girl seemed a bit more shy than Aamina... or maybe she was a spy and pretended to be shy. Either way, he knew she was probably a bit scared. She was just a peasant, after all. "Hello?" He said softly. "Are you in there? I won't punish you." And he wouldn't; he didn't even plan to try to restrain her. If he could talk to her without harming her then he'd consider himself successful. "I just need to explain some things to you. May I enter?"

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Promise blinked; a bit confused and slightly cross at Aoi. "I can take care of myself, thanks." She brushed her hands down her bodice, suddenly self-conscious of how she looked. She nodded to Jahan as he walked past, then trailed behind the pair as he muttered something to Aoi. Seeing them walk together, they seemed like an unlikely pair, but those types usually stayed fast friends for a long time.

 

[Also assuming Aoi showed Jahan the room and Aoi followed Jahan's directions to stay on the first floor]

Promise watched Jahan climb the stairs for a moment, then turned to Aoi. "You going to tell me why you two are here?" She shifted her weight to her right leg and crossed her arms. She wasn't really in the mood for any playing around. She was hungry and tired, and she wanted to know what was going on.

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"I can take care of myself, thanks." Aoi smirked, slightly annoyed that she didn't blush or anything of the sort. He knew many girls who would; even faint if he said something like that to them. He could see that it had got to her, though; he thought she looked a little embarrassed. Turning around, he watched as Jahan and Promise followed to where he was. "Of course," Jahan replied as he caught up, "but let me go first. Perhaps you intimidate her, Aoi. I am more her age and she might not understand travelers like you." Aoi laughed and answered, "I guess. It could be the hair," He joked, casting a glance at Promise. Jahan introduced Promise, but Aoi already knew who she was; or had seen her around, at least, making him feel more familiar to her than Jahan. "You may tell her what we are doing, if you deem her trustworthy. I will deal with the girl. Stay here on the first floor." Aoi nodded, then muttered, "Leave it to me."

 

He turned to face Promise as Jahan walked up, leaving them at the foot of the stairs. "You going to tell me why you two are here?" Promise's voice had no trace of humour in it; just a look that told him to answer properly. Aoi sighed. Why was she so serious? He narrowed his eyes, suddenly irritated by her and her questions, and threatened in a low and menacing voice. "Listen up. I don't know how Jahan knows you, but I don't know if I can trust you. Travellers are people that make so many connections. How can I know if you haven't allied yourself with an enemy and decided to come along to pretend to be on our side?"

 

------------------

 

"Hello?" A voice came from behind the door following a knock. Naomi drew in a sharp breath and crouched slowly, holding her breath. "Are you in there? I won't punish you. I just need to explain some things to you. May I enter?"

 

He sounded so nice, but Naomi knew that he was part of the Shadow Alliance. She didn't have anything against them, but if they were planning to do something that was violent or destructive, what was she to do? She looked around for a way to get out. There were no windows, she had checked; and even if there were, it would be too far up from the ground to get down safely. The only way out was through the door.

 

Closing her eyes, she thought, What would her father do? Would he open the door and try to negotiate with them? She knew that they wouldn't let her leave so easily, as she had overheard what they were talking about, and could tell anyone. They didn't know that she didn't talk much, though, as she had no one to talk to. The kid seemed her age, though, and she was confused as to why someone as young as their age would join the Shadow Alliance. Were they even allowed to? He seemed intriguing, nonetheless; maybe... If he would...

 

Slowly, she reached up and unlocked the door handle.

Edited by lachrymation

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Promise narrowed her eyes right back at him. She wasn't one to back down and shrivel. "You want proof?" She undid her broach and pulled down her collar, revealing her pale skin with an ice burg mark. "I doubt the people of the light alliance would take in worthless elemental trash such as myself." She spoke with disdain, how she imagined the opposing forces would refer to her kind. She released her collar, then pinned it back up with the broach. A sudden wave of fatigue washed over her, making her sway on her feet. She panicked as she felt herself falling forward, and her hand shot out to steady herself on the wall. She shook her head slightly to rid herself of a headache then looked up at Aoi again. "Look. I'm tired. I'm hungry. I've been walking for days. I just want to know what's happening."

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~Jahanshah~

 

Silence answered Jahanshah, but he waited patiently. He had a hard time understanding shy and quiet people who weren't servants, but he continued to remind himself that she was a peasant... and Aoi had probably scared her. He almost snickered to himself when he remembered Aoi's comment about his hair--now that Jahan thought about it, Aoi's hair was very distinct. Jahan didn't know anyone else with hair quite that color.

 

Suddenly Jahanshah heard the door unlocking. He quickly planned what he might do. For a moment he wondered what Queen Zillah would do, and he came to a conclusion he assumed was correct; Zillah wasn't unduly cruel. When the door was unlocked, Jahan gently took the handle and opened it a crack. He was somewhat tense, prepared for an attack to come through the door. He peered through the opening and smiled. "Sorry about my friend's behavior. You see, you startled us. Are you from around here?"

 

Jahan attempted to open the door farther so that he could enter the room. If he was successful, he would enter the room and close the door behind him, then sit down.

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When Promise fell, Aoi had instinctively reached out to help her, but she steadied herself on the wall and then snapped, "Look. I'm tired. I'm hungry. I've been walking for days. I just want to know what's happening." Aoi knew how that felt. He often had to skip towns that were part of the Light Alliance just to get some rest and food. That was because it was quite easy to recognize someone like him; although he often thought that people who did see him believed that he was an earth elementarian since they wouldn't want to think that someone like him was part of the Shadow Alliance.

 

"Sorry about that," He apologized sheepishly, then nodded his head in direction towards the bar. "We can get some food and then perhaps find one of the rooms that our group's supposed to stay in. Then we can talk, when you're not so..." He paused, " frustrated." He brushed his hair out of his face and took a step towards the dining room. "Come?" He smiled apologetically.

 

------------------------------------

 

Naomi started panicking and looked around in desperation, but when he peered into the room, she simply put her head down, rigid and scared. What if she had done the wrong thing, letting him in? What if he was going to kill her? "Sorry about my friend's behavior. You see, you startled us. Are you from around here?" Naomi tensed, then nodded her head slowly. Hopefully he wouldn't start asking any more questions. She wouldn't say anything; would he be irritated with her?

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Promise blinked at his sudden change of behavior. One moment, he was accusing her of being a spy, then the next he was acting meek and courteous. She hesitantly stepped forward. "It's fine. And, well... Thanks." She followed him to the dining room, twirling a strand of hair around her finger tip. Sighing, she swept off her hat and let her arm hang by her side. She looked around at the many tables then back to Aoi. "I'm... sorry if I seem a bit harsh. I haven't been myself lately..."

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"I'm... sorry if I seem a bit harsh. I haven't been myself lately..." He must have surprised her. “That’s quite alright.” Aoi answered, but smirked behind his back as he lead her to the middle of the dining place. He was right. He was too used to doing that, getting them to confess, defend themselves against him. He turned around to her all smiles, though, and pretended that nothing was wrong. The bartender looked expectantly at them as he approached, and then, when confirming that they were customers, asked, “What may I get you? A beer?”

 

Aoi smiled politely and replied, “I don’t drink. May I have water?” Getting wasted throws away your pride. “What about the girl?” He asked. Aoi looked at her. She did look as tired and miserable as she described. “Anything that’ll fill her up,” He decided, dropped a few coins down, and the bartender went off. “We’ll talk in a private room. There are too many villagers here.” He muttered. “And it looks like you’ll need to eat anything you can.” He commented, glancing at her.

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Promise trudged after him, suddenly wishing her shoes didn't have such high heels. She glanced up at the bartender spoke, but kept silent as Aoi dealt with their food.

 

“What may I get you? A beer?”

“I don’t drink. May I have water?”

“What about the girl?”

“Anything that’ll fill her up,”

 

He paid for the order and the bartender scuttled off. She looked around again at the people sitting in the room and wished she could just get away.

“We’ll talk in a private room. There are too many villagers here.” She nodded, glad for the concealment. She didn't feel like being around people at the moment. Though, she didn't really mind Aoi. Probably because she was familiar with him just 'being around'. “And it looks like you’ll need to eat anything you can.” Promise laughed a little. "Sure, that's one way to word it, I guess." She pressed a hand to her stomach. "I'm so hungry, I feel like I could eat a horse."

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"Sure, that's one way to word it, I guess." She pressed a hand to her stomach. "I'm so hungry, I feel like I could eat a horse." Aoi smiled at that comment. She must have been really hungry, if she could eat a horse. But he hoped that the food he had ordered would do.

 

Aoi nodded to the bartender as he came back with a tray piled with food and took it graciously."We'll see if any of our rooms are not being used," Aoi said simply, and went out to the hallway of rooms on the first floor. He quickly found one of the rooms that they had booked for them that was empty, and placed the tray of food on the table that was next to the bed.

 

((Ahhh short sorry! I have to go read bible. ^^; It's late.))

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Promise started then quickly walked after Aoi, trying to keep up with him with her aching ankles. She stepped into the room and immediately dropped onto the bed with a relieved sigh. "It's been soo long since I'd been inside a lodging of any type..." She glanced over at the tray then flipped over on her stomach, resting her chin in her palms. "What did you get?" She looked up at him. "And what did you want to talk about?"

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Promise lay down on the bed, then asked, "What did you want to talk about?"

Aoi locked the door. "About our plan, here in Cumulus. We're attempting to start a riot here in Cumulus, to make the leaders decided not to join the Light Alliance." He walked over to the bed and sat down beside Promise. "Sound simple enough? Eat something; you must be starving." He smiled and picked up a piece of bread that was at the edge of the tray and handed it to her. Noticing Promise's sword, he touched it. "Do you ever use this?" He asked, curious. He drew it without her permission, then held it in front of him, inspecting it.

 

"Of course, you'd have to look like a pirate..."

Edited by lachrymation

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Promise nodded solemnly. "Pretty simple, yeah." She caught the bread and took a bite, chewing thoughtfully. How would they cause a riot? How would they be able to convince the leaders to... "Do you ever use this?" Her head swung around towards the sound of metal sliding on metal as her sword was drawn from her sheath. She swallowed her mouthful before answering. "Sometimes. When I don't have enough energy to create my own." She grinned at his pirate comment then again bit into the loaf.

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Understanding, Aoi nodded, then stood up. "Well, you're tired, I can tell; how about I leave you to rest for a bit?" He walked to the door and left, closing it behind him. He figured he could walk around the city for a bit, and he headed towards the entrance of the inn while putting his coat on. (I don't remember if he got it back from Marcus)

 

(Short post is short because I have to pack. I don't know if I have enough time... Hopefully I can somehow fit in when I come back! ^^wink.gif

 

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Promise smiled gratefully. She wasn't going to say anything, but she was pretty tired. She was glad Aoi was observant enough to tell. She looked around the room, realizing she was allowed to sleep in this luxurious room. At least, it was luxurious to her. A pillow on it's own was rare enough, but a hotel room? Unheard of. She opened her window and sat on the sill, gazing out at the city. It was a beautiful sight.

 

((Sorry, mine's kind of short too. *pokes Promise* She doesn't seem to want to co-operate.))

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((Assuming that she has a ground floor room...))

 

Tractus~

 

Tractus walked into the city gates looking around at the new scenery. Tall buildings almost like there were in Sola, but different somehow. He sighed and continued to go forward. Moonlight poured down from the heavens, giving everything a strange look. It was meserizing. A light glimmered to his left. He looked at it, and saw a beautiful girl sitting in it. His eyes opened wide. She was beautiful. He walked towards the glass and waved at the girl, entranced.

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Promise was enjoying the sight of the streets and houses sprawling out in front of her when someone with white hair caught her attention. He was waving at her, so she instinctively waved back. Did she know him? He didn't look familiar, but she opened the window anyway. The glass brought in a cool breeze, sweeping her hair out of her face suddenly. "Hello."

Edited by Silver_Voices

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Tractus~

 

Tractus saw the girl wave at him, and say hello. He smiled. Usually, people were freaked out by his hair color immediately on sight. He practically felt relief seep into him, and this gave him courage to go forward. "Hello. My name is Tractus. Do you have a name, milady?" He came closer to the glass and put his hand on it, and looked deep into the girl's eyes. This was another test.

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Promise tilted her head a little. "I'm Promise. Promise Serae." She swung her legs over the window sill, hanging them over the wall on the outside. "A pleasure to meet you." She brought her own white hair over her shoulder and ran her fingers though the long strands. "Have we met before? Or is this just a friendly hello?"

Edited by Silver_Voices

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"Have we met before? Or is this just a friendly hello?" Tractus thought for a moment. She seemed familiar, but why didn't he remember her name? He could have sworn... Oh well. "You seem really familiar to me. I'd like to say that we've seen each other before, but I didn't remember your name from anywhere. You caught my eye, so I decided to make salutations." He was getting nervous, hence the larger vocabulary. He needed to calm down... "So, Promise, I love you." He couldn't believe he just said that! That wasn't supposed to come out! A faint tinge of color was now rising to his usualy pallored cheeks. "Wait, that's not what I meant, I-"

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Promise raised her eyebrows at Tractus' statement. Who was this guy? He just admitted he didn't really know her. Oh, but he was so nervous and embarrassed. The poor guy. But he looked so cute flustered. She smiled sweetly with a touch of sympathy in her expression. "Well... Thank you. That's sweet." She laughed softly. "Though, I'd like to get to know you at least a little before I told you I loved you back."

Edited by Silver_Voices

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"Though, I'd like to get to know you at least a little more before I told you I loved you back." Tractus fell to the floor. Why had he said that? He was confused. He wasn't even sure that he felt this way about Promise... He sighed. He looked up at her. "Can I come up to you, then?

We can talk, and I can fix tea..." Maybe if he made her forget he said that, then he wouldn't have to be so embarassed. Slowly, he felt the color flow out of his face as he waited for an answer.

Edited by gistofeverything

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Promise gestured for him to come through the window. "Sure. Come on up." She looked around the room and found it in pretty nice order, then picked up her hat from the floor and tossed it onto a chair. Then she went back to the window and offered Tractus her hand. In the back of her head, she had an uneasy feeling that this probably wasn't the best idea, but she pushed it aside and reached further to help Tractus up.

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"Sure. Come on up." Promise offered her hand to him. He took it, and accepted her help to get up to the windowsill. Sighing, he sat down next to her. She was strong. He was a little disconcerted by that - guys were the ones supposed to be helping the girls up, not the other way around... Oh well, he wasn't exactly one's average guy, either... "So, Promise. You see that lovely moon up there? Legends say that the moon was once a part of our Mother Earth, but was struck from it long ago, by the fury of the heavens. That was also the birth of Man." Tractus was trying to impress Promise with his vast knowledge and meticulosity of his actions... Edited by gistofeverything

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