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Princely Magicks || 1x1

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Sooo another 1x1 between Fata and I. This time, we gon' explore what happens when an adventurous prince crosses paths with a shy nymph.


We got a basic romance plot with some twists and turns. Let's see how much laughter, tears, and heartaches we might get from this.


I'll throw my sheet in here in a moment.


Name: Laomedeia [Lao or Deia are nicknames they respond to]

Age: 112 years old

Gender: Dfab Non-binary

Race: Wood Nymph


-> Magical: Standing only 5'2" in height, Lao has a very delicate and thin build with wiry limbs and a small chest. Their skin is brown like the bark on the trees they cherish so greatly but soft as if the elements had never touched them before. Their face is oval-shaped with a small nose, full lips, and vibrant hazel eyes. Falling upon their shoulders in waves is brown hair intermixed with leafy-green tendrils; real leaves and flowers grow from their scalp just like the rest of their hair, thin and flexible branches twisting through just the same. Thought they are dominantly naked, bark-like material - seemingly fuzed into their skin - runs along their sides and across their near-flat chest to cover most of their breasts. Similarly, mossy-green coloring of the same material runs down to conceal the region between Lao's legs and much of their bottom, forming into a pseudo coattail. Sprouting from the back of their slender neck, Lao has two thin branches spiraling down each of their arms to their knuckles. Likewise, branches sprouting from the "coattail" spiral around their thighs. Lastly, from their back, a pair of shimmery green and brown, translucent butterfly wings sprout and flutter.

-> Human: Much like her natural appearance, Lao's human form is small and delicate, possessing the exact same body structure and height. Their hair loses the flowery qualities, becoming a plain wavy brown; "normal" for a human. They dress more "modestly" for human standards, wearing a simple frock made of light blue material with white hemming. On their feet are plain shoes. All traces of their magical nature is hidden, a necklace with a tree pendant around their neck containing their magical energy.

Personality: Laomedeia is very shy and meek, soft spoken when they actually do talk. Due to their quiet nature, they are very easy to push around and manipulate or simply command. They're easy to intimidate or scare but they are very curious about new and strange things. Quick to flee at the first sign of real danger, Lao isn't a fighter at all - too pacifistic. However, if something they like a lot is being threatened, they'll try to defend it if running away isn't an option.


-> Shapeshifting - Limited to three forms: Wood Nymph, Human, and Oak tree. [Active]

-> Plant Manipulation - Very limited ability to manipulate plant life; restricted to simple movements and unable to advance or delay growth. [Active]

-> Venom/Poison Immunity - Lao is immune to all venoms and poisons. However, they are more susceptible to human illnesses from viruses. [Passive]

Other Stuff:

-> Their shapeshifting ability isn't perfected yet as Lao hasn't seen the need to practice it but their manipulation ability is mastered.

-> They have a very good knowledge about plant life - which ones have healing/curative properties, which ones are bad for your health, which ones will kill you, etc.

Edited by Narvix

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oh man i must draw lao sometime they're so cute i

send help


here is prince-kun he is very lame compared to the beautiful laomedeia

if there's anything you need me to change, please let me know!! otherwise once you've confirmed all is well i'll go ahead and post a starter ; u ;


Name: Alon Eitan Rosenfled

Age: 19

Gender: Dmab Genderfluid - he/him, they/them, she/her

Race: Human

Appearance: Alon stands at 5'9", being broad-shouldered and tall. He has a more heavyset frame from years of training, and holds himself with a confident, imposing air. Alon has princely features, with dark, thick eyebrows, an aristocratic nose, and a square jaw. His hair dark brown and curling down to his ears, Alon has similarly dark eyes and a tanned, healthy complexion. His clothes for travel are considered royally-modest, for his dress is still uncommon for peasants of his time yet not quite as glorious as what court is used to. Over his shoulder, he carries a bag attached by a rope around his waist, which holds important possessions such as his wallet, royal crest, a sprinkle of fairy dust, and feed for his horse.

Personality: Princely and honourable, Alon considers his moral standing above anything else. Since childhood, the idea of being an honourable knight has been pounded into his mind, and Alon resolves daily to live up to such a standard. By nature, Alon has a rather loud, commanding voice and will not back down easily. In addition, the royal manner by which he speaks has proven effective to get him in terrible trouble at times, for Alon is unable to read situations nearly as well as he thinks himself to. Alon would rather not resort to violence if there was no need, yet he is also very patriotic and will defend his realm to the death. Finally, from his childhood being spent outside exploring, Alon is naturally curious and wishes to understand more about the world in which they inhabit.

History: The firstborn heir to the kingdom, Alon was pampered from childhood into becoming the perfect majesty. Trained in arts and humanities, science and mathematics, Alon showed great promise early on and was regularly doted on and praised by his adoring father. His birth mother died when he was five due to a miscarriage, and his father, in his grief, took another three years before he married another woman, thus providing quite the age gap between Alon and the rest of his siblings. Due to this, Alon's best friends during his adolescence were the animals he were given as pets during his childhood and the great outdoors which he loved to explore. Since his coming-of-age, Alon is well known throughout the kingdom as being the 'perfect' future ruler, with smarts in both academics and outdoors.

On his 19th birthday, his father exposed a secret onto the bright Alon--to prove himself worthy of the throne, he would have to embark on a dangerous journey that have killed many previous heirs. The terms set out by his father were as follows: a star, ensnared within a darkened cape, a shell made out of pure gold, from which reflected the waves of the gods, and the tears of a mysterious woodland creature known as a nymph. With these requirements in mind, Alon set out on an adventure driven by personal ambition to achieve greatness.


not much he's just human

Swordplay > trained since childhood, Alon is quick on his feet and a formidable opponent.

Archery > though he is not well-practised, Alon does know how to shoot a bow.

Medicine > Alon knows basic medical procedures in case of an emergency.


- If you call him Al he'll literally kick you

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heck yeah i'm glad you like him!! yoo sounds good ))


The wind blew harsh and true in the lands of the north. Alon gasped, raising the canteen up to his mouth, and took a long gulp of water as he felt the liquid flow through him and rejuvenate his very limbs.

I won't give up, the young prince thought to himself, shoving aside a fistful of curly dark hair. I have to be strong . . . !

Dark eyes gazed ahead, and Alon searched the horizon for any signs of life. He had not met another companion in such a while, having chosen to go about his quest alone. Singlehandedly, he would reclaim the honour of his kingdom and prove himself worthy of the throne. The young heir's mind swam with possibilities, filled with excitement at the mere thought of his father's pride upon the completion of his quest.

He would prove himself to the world, to his kingdom, to his allies, and to his family--so that his reign would be one of peace and prosperity, he swore to the gods.

He ran through the list of items he needed one more time, having long since committed them to his memory, and brainstormed his next course of action.

His best bet would be the woodlands between his kingdom and the nearby village--after all, he was after a woodland creature, was he not? Surely at least one of the items was attainable with ease, and the prince aimed to achieve his goal as soon as possible.

With that thought in mind, Alon raised himself up once more and began trekking down the slopes of the hill, having traveled halfway between the snowy mountains and the dark forests.

Birds sang in the distance as he walked, and Alon raised his face to the skies--smiling faintly, the heir wondered on the wondrous quest that lay ahead of him.

So caught up in his thoughts was he that Alon failed to notice his unsteady trail--suddenly, the very ground before his feet gave way and Alon let out a shout of terror as his footing slipped, and the majesty tumbled through the trees to land rather undignified in a gently-trickling stream.

Groaning, the male cursed inwardly at his own clumsiness--how could this happen? He raised himself slowly, grimacing, before worriedly checking his knapsack to make sure all his possessions were still with him.

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It was warm beneath the green canopy, the branches swaying while the leaves rustled in the wind that swept through the forest. Sunlight struggled to break through the treetops, creating a dusky lighting. Beyond the forest, the wind was unkind and the sunlight bright. Laomedeia was comfortable within the forest, their shimmery wings fluttering and carrying them short distances above the ground. Their bare feet touched dead leaves, twigs, grass, and dirt, the sound of the stream reaching their ears.


Heading for it, the Nymph lightly trailed their fingers along the tree trunks, a large smile curving their lips upward and brightening their hazel-colored eyes. Flowery hair shifted across their shoulders with their movement while their wings shifted with simple joy. This was home and had been such for over a century.


A shout disrupted the sound of the forest, causing Lao to startle. Wings twitching, they froze where they stood. The stream could barely be glimpsed through the spaces between the trees, movement at the forest edge catching their eye. Both frightened and curious, the Nymph worked their wings and flew in a partial semi-circle. They could see the source of the sound and movement better now with a thick tree close by for hiding.


Laomedeia held their breath, peering around the trunk as they pressed close to it, examining the being that picked itself up. He was definitely human, the way he lumbered so awkwardly like a babe first learning to walk. The Nymph had seen humans before but it wasn't often; not many ventured into the forest because of its magical occupants.


Shifting their gaze about, they spotted a bag off to the side and their wings lifted up from curiosity. Glancing at the human again to make sure his back was to them, Lao quickly flitted towards the bag, snatched it up, and darted further behind the trees. Looking over their shoulder to make sure the human hadn't caught sight of them, Lao knelt down among the roots of a tree and started examining the bag, turning it this way and that way. Holding it to their ear, they quickly shook it, trying to make out its contents by sound.


Lao frowned, setting the object down before tipping it over in means of figuring out how to open it. Finally, they discovered tie keeping it closed and pulled the bag open, turning it upside to dump out all of its contents before picking through and examining each item.

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His knapsack!

Where had his beloved bag gone? Alon clutched at his head in despair, upon realising that his bag--which he would have sworn he caught sight of only moments ago--was suddenly gone, and in its place replaced by the gently trickling sounds of the stream and the birdsong of early morning.

The young heir gasped, gritting his teeth together--the water where he had fallen was cold, and now his soaked clothes were beginning to get the better of him. A horse--he didn't know why he hadn't bothered to take an animal at the beginning of his expatiation, yet with all his unfortunate bad luck the prince swore to buy a steed as soon as he came within contact of another village.

Yet his future purchases were hardly the first thing on his mind--little could he buy if he did not find his belongings! Scrambling up, Alon jumped to his feet and began searching. Where could it be? Surely it had not fallen far--the stream was slight in momentum, hardly enough to carry off a bag of such weight.

He was looking around when he first spotted something--aha! The prince immediately snatched up the prized belonging, and with surprise turned the object over in his hands--his compass . . . ?

His heart jumped in his throat at this realisation--could it be? Had he forgotten somehow, in his haste, to tie together his bag? Did his items now lay spilled along the riverbank?

Lamenting on his karma, Alon lowered his head and searched intensely along the stones for any other telltale signs of his items strewn about.

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The items were so strange and ranged from not interesting at all to very attention holding. Lao picked up the first object, a small bit of circular metal that seemed to have something inside. Turning it in their hands made the pointy piece spin but the Nymph couldn't figure out what for or what it meant. And, the ends kept pointing in the same direction. Figuring it to be broken, Laomedeia threw it away, their attention already on to the next thing.


Everything was curious to them, practically alien. Lao licked some of the objects, cringing when almost all of them tasted foul, earning an immediate rejection and toss in a random direction. Some turned out to actually be edible but none of it had a flavoring they liked. Considering it as food, the Nymph decided it best not to throw it away and, instead, simply placed it beside them. Shiny objects caught their fancy and they kept the circular pieces of metal with weird engravings that came in silver and gold colors. They'd been in a small pouch, separated from everything else. Maybe the pouch was special? Well, either way, they kept it all together. Besides, having the circular things in the pouch made an interesting sound when they shook it.


More items and more items went through their inspection, almost half of them being thrown away while the other half were collected in a specific order around the Nymph. The most recent item to fail Lao's inspection headed on an unintended course for the human that gradually approached.

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Following the trail of his numerous possessions strewn about, Alon crept steadily down the creek. Water splashed against his form, running down his legs and soaking his breeches in small rivets of sprinkling water. Strangely, his items seemed to be nearly random in their landing--surely, he had not fallen so far for his pocketwatch to land directly in a nest of curling branches, tangled within the fragile wood?

He contemplated the possibly of another force at play, and the idea of bandits or travelling rouges holding his knapsack captive made anxiety rise in the prince's throat, threatening to spill over onto his thoughts. He increased his pace, surging onwards and creating splashes among the once-peaceful river until, at last, he stopped.

His items, from hereon down, seemed to finally come to rest--he discovered the small wooden trinket his mother had given him as a farewell present gathered with his journal, the pages now water-spoiled and unreadable. Internally cringing at such damage to his valued goods, Alon swept his gaze around, looking for the culprit. Oh, what he would do, upon finding the sneaky thief! To take another's possessions was horrifying enough, to have no basic regard for the wellbeing of his belongings was unthinkable . . . !

So caught up in his thoughts was he that Alon failed to notice the object directly aimed towards his head until it was too late, and the heir felt a hard item hit him directly on the back of the head.

"Ow!" Alon exclaimed, immediately whipping around--an attack? His sudden movement made his head spin with pain, and Alon blinked in surprise when he saw no intruder at the threshold.

What . . . ?

He looked down, and he saw his pendant, with his family crest embedded on the surface, shining innocently in the morning light.

How . . . ?

Then, Alon pales when he sees another one of his notebooks--really!--sail through the air from behind a tree, curving perfectly once before dropping into the stream.

Immediately, he was furious. The thief . . . they dared to snatch up his items in a moment of weakness, and now mocked him by throwing his things carelessly downstream? What's more, they dared to even attack him with his family emblem as a show of superiority?

He neared the back of the tree, walking slowly. With his family engraving in one hand, and the other raised to ward off any sudden attack, Alon turned the corner sharply.

"You!" he said, voice perhaps a little louder than necessary.

. . .

He blinked.




Am I . . . dreaming?

His hand fell, and his face became one of only surprise--what . . . ? Did his eyes betray him?

Before him was a beautiful . . . creature, one that he had never seen before. Their skin was unblemished, dark as the bark on nearby trees. Their lips were full and eyes vibrant, shining as they reflected the early-day sun in glowing hazel irises. Waves of brown hair cascaded down their shoulders, entwined with tendrils of green leaves and pink-touched flowers. Alon could not find words to express his surprise, and in his shock he simply stared at the ethereal, unworldly other.

"Who are . . . you?" he asked softly, afraid of scaring the newcomer.

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Lao paused, glancing up and flicking their eyes about to find the source of the sound. For a moment, they thought the human had spotted them but, he was not in sight. Relaxing, they returned to their rummaging, flipping through a small book before finding no interest in it and similarly throwing it away.




This time they shrieked, wings springing up and beating to propel the Nymph into the air. What items that had been hoarded in their lap dropped to the ground but Laomedeia didn't think of it, darting to hide behind another tree some short distance away. They cowered where they hid, trembling in a small ball on the ground, waiting for the human to come after them.


It had fallen silent though and Lao stopped quivering, wings perking a fraction in uncertainty. Why wasn't the angry human attacking? Or had the Nymph gotten away? Rolling onto their hands and knees, Laomedeia crawled around the base of the trunk until they could peek their head out from behind it and peer at the human.


He looked dumbfounded, surprised, and stared at her with shock. "Who are . . . you?" His voice was soft this time, a sharp contrast to his former shouting. Lao blinked, too shy and nervous to answer let alone come out of hiding. Disappearing behind the tree again, they pressed their back against the bark before looking up at the branches. Quickly and quietly, they fluttered upward, concealing themselves within the leafy limbs of the tree.

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The creature, whatever it had been, shrieked upon experiencing Alon's rather . . . violent introduction, spreading beautiful--


Before he could think to question it further, much less believe his eyes, the creature took flight in the span of a second and promptly disappeared, leaving behind a small, collected shower of items.

Alon looked down, and immediately realised some of the hoard as belonging to him. Ah . . . so this . . . being had taken his bag?

Immediately, he felt guilty for how he had reacted. Initially, he had been consumed by the fear that his items were stolen by bandits or travelers, men without honour whose only goal in life was to procure enough funds for their next meal, and such a thought had filled him with terror that prompted a rampage.

He's heard of the children of the forest, yet never seen such a creature with his eyes--for surely, most of the human world believed them to be myths, and he was raised believing in fairytales to send him to sleep dreaming of human-like creatures who could take flight. And now that there was one . . . here in the flesh . . . !

He caught a sight of a timid gaze just as he spoke the question, yet those ethereal eyes disappeared just as quickly as they had come. Where had the being gone? For surely, he could not keep referring to them as a creature--for the human-like being was not a beast, no, nor a mythical animal of legend; they seemed much too delicate, much too unearthly.

"I'm sorry," he said softly, his voice rustling through the leaves. Gently, Alon took the emblem out of his pocket. "C-Can you understand me? I apologise for having acted that way." The emblem, newly shined, sparkled in the morning light with his family crest. "My name is Alon Eitan Rosenfled, heir to the Rosenfled throne. I . . . I would like to formally introduce myself. Are you alright?"

He doesn't quite know where to address, pointing his voice in the general direction of the trees, and waited for an answer, his heart beating in his chest.

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The human's softer voice continued to stay after his initial question, carrying an introduction to Laomedeia's ears. Blinking slowly, they peered through the very branches they hid among, viewing the human below. It seemed like he couldn't find them, his gaze shifting everywhere while his words were directed at the air. In his hand, a shiny object sparkled and Lao followed it with their eyes. Recognizing it as something they'd thrown away, they darted their gaze back to the man's head.


He wasn't looking this way.


Silently, they climbed out of the tree and hovered behind the human, wings fluttering quietly to keep their feet off the ground. With every movement the man - Alon Eitan Rosenfled - made, Laomedeia mimicked to avoid behind seen. "A... Lon...?" they whispered curiously, their voice sounding like the rustling of leaves in a gentle breeze or the soothing trickle of the stream.


Realizing quickly that they had spoken aloud, Lao beat their translucent wings and shot back into hiding within the canopy above, causing the branches to shift and leaves to tumble. Had he seen them? Looking down, Laomedeia waited to see if he knew where they were now. The human was such a curious being. First loud and angry but now quiet and calm.


Former encounters with men had been few and far between, most of them seeking out the treasures of Lao's forest home. Though, they never seemed to find what they wanted. Humans were always so interesting but also frightening. Creatures would tell the Nymph of their misdeeds or terror, having witnessed it first hand.


But this one didn't look as barbaric as often described. Even the few they'd seen before only had furs on them and a crossbow at the worst. Perhaps the other inhabitants had be unfortunate to see a different species of humans? If there were different species.


Even more curious now about the man's deviation from others of his kind, Lao parted some of the branches for a better look, slowly drifting down to hover at his eye level with their arms and legs tucked against their body. "Alon... Eitan Rosenfled?"


The name strangely sounded familiar.

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Alon held his breath as he heard his first name, so quietly that the wind itself seemed to create an illusion, and the heir wondered if he had truly heard his title amongst the heavens. The young prince dared not move, holding himself uptight in the greenery as wind rustled along the trees, stirring the leaves as delicate branches clicked against one another.

The creature he had seen moments earlier . . . could it be? Alon knew not what exactly they had been, but he has heard tales; tales long considered myth, of creatures of the forest--everything from murderous deer to small dwarves, from mythical elves to . . . the rarest of them all, the forest nymphs, with skin ranging from leaf-green to wooden-bark, delicate branches entwined along their hair, flowers blossoming near their feet. The being that had shown themselves only moments earlier--who could they be?

Alon dared not to breathe for fear of upsetting the other further--instantly, he regretted his earlier actions. What had driven him, a usually placid, calming sort of fellow, to such extremities? The possibility of losing his bag and the stress of knowing it was gone from him had added up into a rampage that lasted a split second too late, and Alon immediately wished he could somehow turn back the clogs of time to an era where he had not scared away such a beautiful, majestic being.

Alon started when the leaves parted, and from within the growth emerged the being. Up close, they were even more ethereal--they were supported by a pair of wings, butterfly in appearance, alternating colours of green and brown in shade. As they approached, Alon dared not move.

"Alon... Eitan Rosenfled?"

They repeated his name, and the heir gave a small nod, allowing a friendly smile to flicker on the ends of his mouth.

"That's me," he confirmed, then spoke again slowly, not wanting to frighten the other. "I apologise for startling you, that was not my intention. Who are you?"

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The human seemed to examine them, frozen in place as Lao drew nearer. As Alon spoke slowly, the Nymph continued closer until their face was practically in his, perhaps even forcing him to lean backwards slightly. "In-tention," the Nymph enunciated. Tilting their head sideways, causing several strands of their dark and flowery hair to tumble off their shoulder, Lao was silent again. Slowly, they uncurled their body, lowering their feet to the ground.


Their head came up to the human's shoulders, forcing the Nymph to tilt their head back for a decent sight of the male's face. But, it was only so for a second as Lao proceeded to examine the rest of Alon's person, circling him slowly and curiously prodding at his clothing. Their footsteps were quiet, only signaled by the soft crunch of a dry leaf or faint snap of a tiny twig. The Nymph's shimmery wings fluttered here and there, perked from Lao's level of interest in the human.


"Alon..." they repeated once more, either ignoring his inquiry about them or not understanding it at all. "Eiten Rosenfled..." Why was that name familiar? Coming to a stop, Lao's hazel gaze found the shiny metal piece in his hand again and they crouched down to have it at their eye level. Poking it once, twice, thrice.


"Rosenfled... Kingdom?" Wasn't that why the name sounded familiar? Lao remembered hearing about the human kingdom now and again from fellow folk of magic. Wasn't the current ruling line Rosenfled?

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The creature neared, and Alon dared not to breathe--instinctively, he tilted back in response, not wanting to accidentally startle them. Their noses were close, nearly touching, and he found himself enraptured by sweet, wondering eyes.

The Nymph spoke, and he nodded slightly, wondering. They tilted their head, and waves of dark hair cascaded down their shoulder resembling the silent flow of the river beneath their feet, and watched as the creature lowered themself until they met the ground.


He dared not breathe, for fear of startling them. His mind went into overdrive, boundless questions held captive by the gates of his lips, his silence only a ploy to discover more of this wondrous creature. He felt more than saw the Nymph begin to circle him, for he feared should he look down that this would be all be a starving man's hallucination, that such an experience surely did not deserve hail in such mortal realms. His ears were alight, eager to hear in order to capture evidence to prove to his memories at a later date, and he heard the crunch of hardened leaves underneath the Nymph's delicate footsteps and the twigs that rustled as they moved. He felt slender fingers gently prod at his being, out of sheer curiosity and nothing more, and from the corner of his eye he caught slight of an iridescent wing, fluttering idyllically in the spring's welcoming breeze.


He listened as they repeated his name, and dared to nod softly in agreement, the faint shadow of stubble on his cheek barely brushing the opening of his shirt. He looked down when he felt something touch his fingers, and then found the Nymph to be feeling his royal emblem, their fingers lighting trails around the curved insignia, as if to memorize the complicated patterns with a single touch.


"Indeed," he intoned, speaking softly, turning his palm so that the emblem faced the Nymph so they could better continue their inspection. "I wish you no harm," he continued, "only to retrieve my items so I may continue my travels. I am on a quest, you see."

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As they examined him, the male hardly moved and simply let the Nymph inspect him. Lao barely even seemed to notice his lack of movement. Either that or it was a matter of little consequence during their examination. Finally, as they stopped circling him and momentarily focused on the shiny object in his hand, the man responded to their vague question. "No harm..." they repeated softly.


At the mention of his items, the being quickly darted their gaze towards the scattered belongings along the forest floor, wings flicking anxiously as Lao began to register their actions. Certainly, they were caught as the guilty party. Quickly, their wings fluttered and propelled them backwards a few feet, putting space between the Nymph and the human. No longer did they invade his personal space but their hazel eyes still intently focused on Alon.


A quest?


Curiosity and interest flashed in their gaze as their feet lifted from the ground again, wings carrying them back into the canopy. For a few heartbeats, Lao was gone from sight. Leaves rustled as the Nymph reappeared beyond the man, dropping down to the forest floor once more and gathering up some of the items that had been tossed aside. "Quest. What quest?" they inquired, examining one of the items again briefly before looking at Alon.


Titling their head, they blinked slowly.

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Alon watched as the being's hazel eyes flickered to and from his being, and the prince wondered. What thoughts could this mystical being possibly have? Their wings flickered as they continued their inspection, and Alon remembered his kingdom. No matter the ability they possessed with modern sciences, such wonders still existed in the boundless universe above them, and he truly thought that perhaps the heroes hailed legends had not been such fables, after all.


He watched as their eyes nervously danced across his being, the result a glance cast at his scattered inventory above the riverbank. Suddenly, the nymph flickered their wings and hopped back, as if their feet were guided by the winds themselves. They did not make a sound save for the soft flutter of wings that Alon could not quite believe were real, and the prince took a few precious seconds to collect his thoughts.


The rustling of leaves brought a surprise: the nymph had arisen, and Alon momentarily panicked when he realised they were flying away. No! One of the specifics of his quest was to gather a nymph's tears . . . and he doubted he would have a chance to find another one anytime soon.

But how could he achieve such a goal? He did not want to force the other into any action. As he stepped forwards with no goal in mind--perhaps to call the other to a stop, or chase them into the abyss of the forest--they reappeared, much to his relief.


"My father," Alon started to explain at their prompt, but was momentarily halted when he realised that they had been kind enough to gather some of the items they had thrown away earlier in their inspection.

He cleared his throat. "Thank you. Anyways, as I was saying . . . my father is the king to the kingdom, and I am his heir. To prove myself, he has given me a quest to gather valuable items from around the kingdom in order to I--" Here he paused, frowning slightly. Just what did his father hope to accomplish by sending him on this quest? "I guess . . . to show him that I am worthy, I suppose. You've had questing adventurers pass through these lands before, right?"



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"Quest!" Lao exclaimed excitedly after Alon answered their question, their wings lifting them off the ground and towards the man's travel bag where they deposited the items they had gathered. Darting towards him, unaware of his latest question, the Nymph swooped around him and hooked their arms under his, tugging upwards. "Let's go questing!" they urged, very much thrilled with the idea.


Their curiosity was overflowing as their mind whirled with fantastic wonders about the world. What would it be like, they weren't sure. Beyond their forest, their lovely green home, they knew naught of the world. They only knew stories, garbled and confused by the many mouths that told them. "Questing, questing!" they grunted, their enthusiasm momentarily halted when the began to realize that Alon was too heavy for them to lift.


Releasing him, Lao panted and fell to the ground, wings drooping from the struggle of trying to carry additional weight. "Too heavy... Can't fly with you," they mumbled, defeated. If they couldn't carry him, did that mean they couldn't go with? "I want to go questing..." they muttered, frowning.


In the next moment, they sprung to their feet, an idea striking them. "Can't fly but can follow!" Soon they were darting to and fro, gathering the rest of Alon's belongings and dumping the items into his bag before picking it up to bring it to him. As Lao held it out for him to grab, their feet touched the ground lightly and a sparkle of green and brown magic spiraled around their form. Within heartbeats, their dark skin was no longer so exposed, concealed more modestly by a plain blue frock. Their hair was no longer tangled with branches and leaves and flowers, their feet were bare, and a pendant in the shape of a tree hung from their neck. "The creatures told me that humans wear so much fabric and that the world isn't kind to Nymphs. I don't understand it but do I look like a human?"

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"Wh-whoa!" Alon was shocked as the Nymph suddenly sprung into action, as if his words had triggered some sort of excitement buried deep within the creature's heart. The being excitedly flew around, wings fluttering in a way that reflected the fading day's sun, as suddenly they darted behind him and hooked his arms with theirs, urging him to continue on his quest.


They began to repeat his words, their excitement clear with each phrase that passed in their lullaby-pearly tones. However, it wasn't long before the Nymph's eagerness was faltered by the realisation they could not carry him. Of course, for he was a fully grown human being.

Somehow, he found their excitement both contagious and adorable. The Nymph fell before him, wings drooping as a sign of their desperation.


"You can still-" Alon began, but it wasn't long before the Nymph perked up once again, springing upwards as if they had a sudden epiphany. They sped about, their intention unexplained to the confused prince, yet it wasn't long before Alon found his possessions lying at his feet, shoved into his carry on.

However, that wasn't what drew his attention most. Before him, where the Nymph had stood only moments before, was instead a rather cleverly-masked creature that looked human. Had he not known better, Alon would've thought there was a somebody lost within the woods.


The branches and leaves and signs of nature had been cleared from their hair, a blue frock covering most of their dark skin. They questioned this, though Alon really saw no reason to--their identity was well concealed, and he felt honoured at being let in on a secret he was sure not many had the chance of realising.

"You look very much like a human," he reassured, voice warm, and then paused. The Nymph obviously wanted to come with him on his journey, but could he allow it?


The prince realised he wanted the Nymph to accompany him, oh so desperately--for one of his quest items involved the tear of a Nymph, correct? He wondered at this, and faltered in his intentions--for he did not want to make the creature before him weep, not when their excitement was almost childish in a way, but his heirloom was at stake. In addition, he was sure his journey would be perilous and long . . . but if they were up for the challenge . . .


"Of course you can follow," he decided, smiling gently at the other. "I'm searching for some items--would you be able to help me?"

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They smiled widely as Alon confirmed they were human enough. Starting to giggle and laugh with their excitement, Lao paused at his next comment. "Items? Magical items?" they asked. Surely, that's what all of the tales told about? Brave heroes always went on quests to find magical things. Right? "Yes! I help!" they assured. Dancing, they twirled as they moved towards the edge of their forest.


Coming to an abrupt stop, Lao stared out at the grassland that stretched beyond their sight. Alon passed them, moving towards his horse but Lao remained rooted. Their previous excitement had vanished, sucked away like their breath on the wind. Tentatively, they stepped out onto the grass, feeling the faint rise of the ground as it sloped into a small hill. Beyond their forest, the ground felt different beneath their feet. The soil, the grass, was not littered with dried leaves and snapped twigs. Small stones were practically nonexistent as the land became favorable to fields of flowers instead of trees.


The Nymph swallowed, their throat grown dry from anxious anticipation. At Alon's curious call, they turned their head sharply, fixing large brown eyes on his figure. Situated in his saddle, practically looming over them from atop their steed. In Lao's moment of hesitation, he looked imposing. No more did he seem like a curious passerby. Now, he looked like a figure with an unknown past that could pose serious harm.


For a moment, Laomedeia glanced over their shoulder. Fleeing crossed their mind as magic sparked across their pendant. Safety in their forest was guaranteed. Could the same be said about outside of it? Stories told by the mouths of fellow creatures filled their head but Lao couldn't filter through them at that moment. They became jumbled up, a string of incoherent garble. Until the thoughts fell silent and the Nymph looked up at Alon once more.


A shy smile carefully crawled across their effeminate face. Reaching their hands up, they awkwardly climbed up onto the horse.

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"Magical items," Alon confirmed, laughing as the Nymph seemed eager to start their adventure. They twirled in happiness, as if their excitement couldn't be contained nor expressed by mere words, and the heir was enchanted by the sight of the elegant woodland creature--who now looked so very human--dancing on the fallen leaves with all the grace of nature's blessings.


"My father," Alon explained patiently, for he supposed they deserved the truth considering the quest they were about to undertake, "wants me to prove myself for the throne--which is just, all things considered. A leader of a country has to be fair and just, yet strong and able. I wouldn't have it any other way." A small smile creased his brow as he remembered his father--old now of age, but still a king in his prime; the way his grey-tinted eyebrows furrowed staring down at his heir to the throne, the booming voice that addressed Alon and told him of his quest before an audience, so the prince dare not break any promises made, and the supplies which the man had sent him with on his adventure. He owed it all to his father for raising him to be such a excellent heir, and the royal had no intention of disappointing him.


"I am to collect items," he spoke, as he made his way past him to gear up his horse--the poor creature had been spooked in his frantic run for his possessions, yet returned now with a calm gesture to his fingertips. "A star cloaked in midnight, the gods' golden shell, and--"


The prince stopped abruptly. Would it be fair for him to tell Lao of his final item? He felt guilty keeping such an important secret, but he didn't want them to mistrust him due to the specifics of his quest. "I, uh, I forgot."


He turned to them, hoping they believed his obviously false lie, but he found the Nymph was rather staring out at the forest. Having second thoughts?


"Lao?" he called, curious.


However, their doubt was soon displaced as a shy smile crept up onto their features--and once again, Alon was struck by how beautiful and unworldly the creature really was--and raised their hands up, climbing onto the horse. He tried to help as much as he could, shifting so that it was much easier for them to get up on top of the huge saddle.


"Alright?" he called, looking back with a gentle, small smile, and then flicked the reins and set a gentle pace.


"I think we can take it easy," he spoke as they began. "It's getting late, after all, and I think there's an inn lately. I still have some coin left over for a bed and a good meal."

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Nodding, Lao confirmed that they were fine in response to Alon's inquiry. "Inn?" they questioned. He mentioned a bed and meal and, while the Nymph understood what those were, they vaguely wondered if his idea of such things were different from their own. In another moment, the man spurred the horse into movement, the beast's pace relaxed; if not a little bumpy and strange to Lao.


The Nymph grew quiet as the pair traveled, falling silent more out of uncertainty and anxiousness than out of a lack of conversation ideas. They didn't know how much time passed but they spent it taking in their surroundings. Grassy hills gave way to more level landscape, trees beginning to dot the place at odd intervals. It grew darker, the pink hues of sunset fading away as darkness crept forward. They'd never been afraid of the dark but, in unfamiliar territory, Lao found themself clinging slightly to the back of Alon's garments.


Eventually, the signs of a human settlement began to appear in the gloom and Lao had to squint in order to try and make sense of the shadowed forms. Lantern light came as like the pinpricks given off by light bugs but their individual circles of illumination grew as the travelers got closer.


Soon, they had entered the human settlement. Not many were out and about. Those who were appeared to be heading to one place or another. Through open windows or swinging doors, laughing or shouting could be heard but it sounded generally pleasant to Lao. Nothing seemed to be overly frightening. Relaxing faintly, they sat straighter in the saddle, glancing about them and studying the wooden structures. "Inn?" they finally spoke up, their voice hushed.

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Alon reigned in the horse to a slow trot, gently guiding the animal around the path to cause the least turbulence. He didn't want to startle Lao, after all--he wasn't sure if the Nymph had previously been on a horse before, and he wasn't about to take any silly chances. As they traveled, the prince was fully prepared to answer questions, though the male was surprised to find that Lao had grown strangely quiet.


He resisted the urge to cast a glance back--after all, he had to concentrate on the road. Overhead, the sky began to darken surprisingly quickly. As they went on, the heir raised his head and looked up at the fading hues.


"The sky is lovely, isn't it?" he said casually, the sentence both an invitation to conversation and a thought to himself. His eyes followed the rebellious streak of dusted pink across the horizon as the colour slowly faded into the dark hues of upcoming night, and Alon shifted and smiled as he felt Lao press closer to his back. Were they afraid? He hoped not--tales of creatures within the trees at night were old wives' tales, after all.


But then again, he was traveling with a Nymph. The prince stifled a laugh to himself and then looked up--ah, there it was!


He knew he had passed an inn on the way to the woods. Backtracking perhaps had set his pace back by a couple hours, but the prince was still unsure where exactly he was going. Perhaps this was for the best.


"Inn," Alon confirmed, smiling, as he slipped from the horse and held out a hand for the Nymph. Coins jingled in the pouch fixed to his belt, and Alon scanned the scene for a place to rest his tired horse. He patted the creature's flank.


"Do you want to come with me?" he asked, looking towards the stables off to the side. Better to get his horse settled in before he asked for food and board, after all.

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In Lao's silence, Alon had spoken briefly, commenting on the sky during the sunset in a questioning manner. Was he asking them about their opinion? Lao wasn't certain. They mumbled at his back, their words nearly indecipherable, "Yes, it is." The Nymph said nothing more, falling back into anxious silence. Were they supposed to have replied? What if he had been speaking to himself and they only intruded on his thoughts? Lao worried that they had.


The man smiled at them, eventually confirming Lao's guess about the inn. Good, they hadn't misunderstood that bit of information from the stores they heard. He slipped down to the ground and held a hand out to the Nymph. It was an odd gesture, one Laomedeia grew confused by. Tentatively, they leaned over and poked at his open palm. After a moment, they ignored his hand and attempted to climb off the horse.


Their foot was caught awkwardly in the stirrup and, unsure of how to get it off, Lao tumbled out of the saddle in an ungraceful display. A short gasp left their delicate, full lips, a cry of shock nearly bubbling free. The ground rushed towards their face and their hands shot forward, hazel eyes squeezing shut.


Strong hands grabbed them, one clasping about their right arm while the other slithered around their waist. Lao was whisked a few steps away, their body being shifted so their foot slipped free of the stirrup and bare toes brushed the ground. Their shock ebbed away as they regained their senses and the firm press of another body registered.


Lao glanced down at the arm wrapped about them, their hazel gaze drifting over to the hand holding their arm then turning to catch Alon's face. "Are you hugging me?" they asked softly, confused. The Nymph realized he caught them, stopping their fall, but associated the hold to descriptions of outward affection humans displayed. After a moment more, they smiled faintly. "Go with you where? I will follow."

Edited by Narvix

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