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  #31  
Old 01-24-2016, 01:56 PM
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Sol was about to walk into the camp with the confidence of an invited guest. And then laughter stopped her in her tracks. The laughter struck a wrong chord within her, like the breaking string of a lute.

She dropped into a crouch, her hands pressed to the ground like a wild animal ready to pounce. Her fingers dug into the earth like claws and with a whisper she awoke the life force of the long grass that grew at the edge of the wayside. It began to grow, answering her whispering with its own, akin to the wind moving tree leaves. She sculpted the growing wildgrass around her legs and arms, the roots coming free from the earth so that she was free to move, but now camouflaged.

Avoiding the light from the firelight, she slowly crept forward, until she could make out the words of the guards 'jovial' conversation. Then she grew still. Listening. Waiting silently until the others arrived.

 
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  #32  
Old 01-26-2016, 12:44 PM
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Gerrard's slowness and indecisiveness had allowed the group to catch up to him in such a way that most of them ended up arriving at the camp at around the same time; something which may not have been a good thing, as now a bunch of suspicious-looking figures had arrived together at an Imperial campsite, a fact that Gerrard couldn't blame the soldiers on post for being a wee bit suspicious about. He dropped his quarterstaff to the ground when the dwarven man began to approach, holding his hands up in the air in what he hoped was the universal signal for 'I don't mean you any harm'.

"Wait, we're not hostile! We were sent here on orders from Major General Whitewall! Please, lower your arms!" Gerrard spoke quickly - perhaps a bit too quickly - in hopes to just resolve the situation as quickly as possible. The last thing he needed was for somebody a bit less inclined towards the Empire to speak up first and make the situation all the worse.
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  #33  
Old 01-27-2016, 09:43 AM
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From within the underbrush lining the road a soft, lilting melody drifts, a lone whistle of a haunting tune. The melody is slowly drifting and rolling, rising and falling, flowing like a river in the cool evening. Anyone who had spent much time around the Folk would recognize the hallmarks of their musical style in the tune, and feel the near-compulsion to dance in time with the song. Suddenly, the tune stops, accompanied by a loud crack of a branch snapping.

"OW!" A somewhat high-pitched voice calls out from the dark underbrush. "Sonova-- " Another snapping crash, then, followed by the sound of a body fumbling and rolling through bushes and branches. A small red ball of limbs and bags rolls out of the brush near the standoff, and suddenly jerks upright. Tevon, seemingly ignorant of the scene on the road, begins picking twigs and leaves off his coat, muttering something about bad trail markers. He looks up, eyes going wide for a split-second. He throws his hands up towards the mace-wielding dwarf.

"WOAH! Woah, hey, woah, we're ... yeah. What he said. Whitehall sent us here. Let's everybody just ... put down the large blunt implements, yeah?"
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  #34  
Old 01-27-2016, 03:37 PM
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Within the earth's embrace, its cool roots and soft grasses wrapped around her form, Sol was remarkably well-hidden. From her low crouch--once a familiar position for the Wildling--Sol eavesdropped on the soldiers' campfire conversation. The overall tone was a joyous one; these soldiers were doubtless making the best of their assignment on the Eve of the New Year. Given that Sol had arrived a good half-hour before any of her dawdling allies, she heard a steady stream of conversation covering a wide range of topics, from the New Year celebrations they were missing, to the farmers from whom they had borrowed the horses, to matters of politics and gossip within the ranks of the Imperial Guard.

Though she was on the opposite side of the campsite, Sol noticed the approaching party long before the soldiers did. As Gerrard and Tevon responded to the dwarven soldier's greeting--if one could call it that--the dwarf raised an eyebrow. "Major General, huh?" Stroking his closely-cropped beard with one hand, and still clutching his mace with the other, he glanced back at his fellow guards, still seated by the fire. They met his gaze with blank stares, prompting the dwarf to turn his attention back to the approaching group. In particular, his eyes fell upon Ar K'l, firelight glinting off of the bald man's head.

"Right, then," the dwarf proclaimed, after a long pause, his voice riddled with doubt. "Come. Sit. I'm Erick." Gesturing to his two partners, the soldier added, "Nayana an' Gaverel." He led the party to the campfire, mace still in hand. Apparently, Erick was a dwarf of few words.

The campsite, for its part, was something of a semi-permanent site, with a stone-encircled firepit surrounded by a half-dozen stones and stumps fit for perching oneself upon. There were bushes around, and a couple of small thickets of trees, just enough to provide some shelter from the occasional gusts of wind that swept through the area. There were countless such campsites along the Imperial Road, serving the needs of any travellers who saw fit to use them. Of course, using such sites always came with a certain degree of risk, for bandits and thieves were known to prey upon them from time to time.

Perhaps that explained why the three soldiers seemed somewhat on edge. A handful of the nine horses--those promised by the Major General--were similarly restless, lending a certain tension to the atmosphere. The supplies seemed to be piled near the horses, and everything seemed to be in order, but the soldiers seemed to have no intention of going anywhere soon.


 
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  #35  
Old 01-28-2016, 01:41 PM
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  #36  
Old 01-28-2016, 07:22 PM
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Marr made no attempt to hide his approach into the soldier’s encampment, his armor and weaponry clanging together loudly as he trailed after his “companions”, keeping an eye on them all.

He forsook pleasantries with the soldiers, instead treading toward the horses and supplies, eager to prepare for departure. A moment of paranoia struck as he noticed the beast’s restlessness, stopping for a minute to glance about the locale, his gaze lingering momentarily on the rocky outcroppings nearby. Only once he was satisfied did he approach the creatures to make sure everything was in order.

Last edited by Isthon; 01-28-2016 at 07:26 PM.
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  #37  
Old 01-29-2016, 06:30 PM
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"You will never call me by that name again."

Ar's initial response to that unexpected reaction was to tilt his chin a fraction upwards, and an eyebrow even farther than that. He locked eyes with the Inquistor, his own expression a mixture of impatience and challenge.

"Interesting," is the only word that passes from the man's lips in response, but the moment that Marr Vakal is no longer looking at him, a slow smile appears on those lips. Oh yes, there will definitely be other instances where that name passes from those lips.

Yet despite the fact that further provocations were likely to follow, Ar did not push the Volyn Inquisitor too far. He did, however, devote the rest of his time to watching Mar'koth as though wondering what other "interesting" things would emerge, if pressed the right way.

***

Throughout the trip to the campsite, that study continued, though with more of a pensive cast to them, speculation strong enough that it was rather easy to ignore the unfettered observations by that feminine voice that had taken up residence. Ar does not directly speak unless spoken to while in transit to the camp, seeming to prefer his thoughts to actual company until the soldiers speak up demanding identification. Still, Ar says nothing, but he does lock eyes with the dwarf, a brow arching upwards as with the Inquisitor, and folds his arms when not absently rubbing at his temples with a mutter of complaint for that "constant" (expletive deleted) headache.

Only after introductions begin does he finally crack his jaws, giving his name in a slightly clipped tone. He does not speak beyond that, and seems rather unconcerned with keeping a watch out for bandits. Had any been nearby, and certain of success, they would have revealed themselves already... unless an ambush was being arranged, of course. Still, that wasn't a matter he was going to lose sleep other, so Ar contented himself with leaning against one of the nearby rocks and letting matters proceed where they will.

Except for that one part where he offers Marr a smile fit to make a devil look angelic, when the matter of the Inquisitor introducing himself is concerned. 'Do you want to say it, or should I?' is what Ar's expression is saying loud and clear. He'll just wait and see what happens.

And smile.

Last edited by Avayar; 02-06-2016 at 04:28 AM. Reason: Grammar police citation was issued for redundancy.
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  #38  
Old 02-02-2016, 02:39 PM
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As soon as Sol heard the group arrive from the other side of the encampment she released the plnts from the task, gently reconnecting their roots back to the earth. She gently rose and padded into the encampment from the other side. "The area is clear" she reported "The General gives his thankingfulness for your service. We will be on our way in the morning. It certainly was nice to meet you. No time to chat. Early to bed early to rise with worms. The cat has our tongue inside the bag. Best not let it out. " She gave a practiced smile and a rehearsed curtsy, followed by a salute with one hand while pressing a single finger to the middle of her lips. She was fairly certain that this was the gesture the civilised folk gave when they wanted silence. She quietly hoped her babbling resulted in appearing as more a fool than that she was trying to get a message to those charged with finding the Prince. "I will happily take first watch. Thank you for your consideration." She spun on her heels and marched back out of the camp the way she came and melted back into the darkness to take watch for the next few hours high in a tree on the ridge top, watching both the camp and the surrounding area from her perch.

OOC: Climb tree in G24
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