The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

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The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:02 pm

(Part 1)
Wisp: Sabine fidgeted as she listened to the names being paired off, her eyes glancing to each pair of recruits as they stepped forward to accept thier tasks. "Hathgar, Snow" she jerked to attention and wove her way through the dwindling crowd of recruits. Standing before the second year issuing assignments, she glanced at her assigned companion from the corner of her eye. The girl was dark, her skin a deep chocolate color. She couldn't get a good look at her eyes since they were both looking at the second year but she had thought she'd seen a bit of purple. "Hathgar, Snow. You are on look out, walk around the perimeter, call out if you see outsiders or find a superior if someone has wandered of or if there is trouble. Use these to get attention if need be. Stay together. Here is a torch, and some flint if you find yourself out till dark. Report back in a 4 hours." "Yes ma'am" Sabine uttered quickly, her gaze darting between the second year, her fellow recruit and the expanse of prairie around them. The sun was just setting behind them, promising at least 2 more hours of light.

Fay Feirings: I walked to the front of the group when my name was called and stood at attention. I noticed that my partner had been one of the girls that had practically vibrated with emotions all day, even now she was barely containing her fidgetiness. The task was handed down, look out, and I accepted the torch and flint, though it wouldn't get dark for a few more hours yet and I would be hesitant to use them even when it did get dark, the light from the torch would ruin any night vision we had. I nodded and spoke a quiet "Yes ma'am" when the second year was done with her instructions. I started off in the direction of the perimeter, not checking to see if my partner followed. Perimeter duty was probably important so I took it seriously, not that there was any other way I knew how to take things.

Wisp: Sabine realized that her partner was already heading off about 3 seconds after she did so. Flashing an embarrassed nod at the second year, she hurried after Snow. "Hi" she uttered quickly as she caught up with the young woman. "I'm Sabine, what's your name?" She tried to catch her breath, hiding the fact that she'd had to trot slightly to keep up with the dark beauty who had been assigned with her.

Fay Feirings: I glanced over when my partner caught up, nodding at her greeting. "My name is Tanya Snow." I turned my gaze back to the prairie, watching for dangers and doing what I assumed was my task. I slowed down slightly so that my partner didn't have to work so hard to keep up. I'd been told by my clan that humans were talkative sort and that I needed to assimilate as much as possible so as to engender feelings of trust between our people. I thought an attempt at what they called 'small talk' would be appropriate at this time. "I see you are slightly taller than me. I am short for my people, are you also considered short here?"

Wisp: Sabine smiled at the woman's name her lips moving to form a quick retort about the irony of it when she thought better of it, perhaps her companion would take offense at it, she seemed the serious sort. She was quiet for a moment, trying to think of how to start conversation when Tanya spoke. Sabine stared at her for a moment, her lips moving but nothing short of confused sounds quietly escaping. "Um..uh..I don't think so I..you're considered short? How tall are most of your people?" She asked finally.

Fay Feirings: I nodded at her response. "I am, my people are normally six of your feet high or taller. I am six of your inches shorter than most the average and so I am considered short. What is the average height of your people?" If I could feel pride I would have for starting a conversation on my first try. As it stood, I was satisfied that the many hours of watch we would be together for would not be filled with uncomfortable silence.

Wisp: Sabine listened curiously, her normally bubbly self caught of guard by Tanya's matter of fact tone about her people. "Well in olden days it is said that the men were taller, but most are shorter now. I'm about average I suppose, most human female's don't reach six feet." she noted. A sly smile slipped over her lips, "Snow..is that some kind of pun in your culture?" she asked with a teasing tone.

Fay Feirings: I looked at the girl confused. "What is a pun? Snow is a common sir name for elves of the winter court." I heard her tone change but I didn't grasp what it meant.

Wisp: Sabine stared for a moment and then shook her head. "You know..a joke, a.. do your people laugh?"

Fay Feirings: I tilted my head slightly and stopped walking for a beat.  "I don't know what a joke is.  Children of our people laugh sometimes but they quickly learn not to."  I found myself lacking in my knowledge of humans and wondering if jokes had been overlooked in my training

Wisp: Sabine frowned and pursed her lips "Quickly learn not to? Is it forbidden?"

Fay Feirings: I tilted my head in the other direction and thought. "Not forbidden, just not accepted. My people found it was easier to live with each other if we didn't have emotions clouding our judgment. Thus we learn to ignore them."

Wisp: Sabine looked down at the ground as they walked, her thoughts swimming, emotions roiling and objecting to their proposed uselessness. "But how do you..life must be so dull. How do you fall in love or..or enjoy a play or.."

Fay Feirings: I was never expecting that question but I answered it with the kind of logic my people were known for. "Life is anything but dull. We all have our tasks and we do them to the best of our ability which brings much wealth and success to the clan. As for falling in love, we don't, matches are made in logical fashions so as to maintain healthy lines. Plays are done by summer and we rarely watch them, frivolous things such as that are not important. Our only weakness is beautiful things, art, music, what have you."

Wisp: Sabine's mouth closed, her lips forming a thin line. Tayna's words gave her much to think you, still she had a hard time grasping a society such as Tayna described it. Marriages being arranged, an abandonment of "frivolous" things. Such a life seemed incredibly dull despite the young elf's argument to the contrary. Her eyes glanced around at the darkening prarie around them, suddenly remembering that they were on patrol and not just out for a lesiurly stroll to discuss social dynamics.   "I see" she responded quietly, her mind trying to think of some way to poke a hole in her companion's logical armor. "Why music?" she asked suddenly, curious as to why that and art would alone pierce their will. Her eyes drifted back to the long grasses, stopping as she glanced movement among them and tilted her head, trying to get a better look.

Fay Feirings: I stopped as well, mulling over her question. I followed her line of sight and spotted a pair of deer grazing about thirty yard off. "Only deer" I said and continued walking my eyes glancing about for more movement. I still didn't have a good answer to her question, how do you explain something like that. "As for why music and art. I don't know frankly. Because they are beautiful. Music elicits emotions in some but for us it's something that can fill the void while we work. Art is something we can hang on the walls and fill those voids as well. I guess they are a kind of release, we may not acknowledge emotions but everybody feels them, we just ignore them." I was a little surprised at my own answer, the revelation coming as I spoke that they were a socially acceptable way for us to feel something.
Wisp: Sabine relaxed as Tanya assured her that the movement was only deer and tilted her head slightly as the young elf explained her culture's weakness for art and music (585 <- bf's contribution). To be quite honest some aspect of it was going over her head. She decided to try and steer the conversation more into her realm of understanding. "Do you have any siblings?" she asked after another moment or two.

Fay Feirings: I thought back to my parents. Dark Elves loved their children in their own way, it was something that was over looked in society. "I am an only child for now. My parents may have another child some day but only time will tell that. So long as we remain in our realm we don't age as humans, our life spans are greatly lengthened so there is a tradition of raising one child at a time. Most families have multiple children spread out over forty or fifty years"
Wisp: "Wow" Sabine uttered quietly "But..you are aging now?"

Fay Feirings: I nodded "we always age, just slower in our own realm. Here I will age as the rest of the inhabitants do, which is fine by me, children were never in my future"

Wisp: "Why?" Sabine asked, her eyes turning to meet Tayna's. She understood that children were not the chief concern among females, yet it was still a desire held by most once their careers were well established and a man had been found who could watch home and hearth to care for the young. She couldn't understand what would compel the elf to give up something seemingly so precious on what..a whim?

Fay Feirings: I met her gaze, trying to read into the question and gain some scope on why she asked it. "We know what we are to be long before we come of age, I was meant to be sent to the human realm as an ambassador to the fleet, though there was a lack of communication on our end so instead I'm to just join your fleet. It is my calling, we continue our callings to death. With a distinct lack of male Dark Elves around I won't be able to be mated to one and certainly won't be able to have children. It is a truth that I have accepted for as long as I can remember."

Wisp: "But what if you don't want to...what if you don't want to do what you were "meant" to? What if.." she trailed off and looked down. "I'm sorry, I've been prying" she said finally and shook her head. "I shouldn't be critizing your..culture" she finished quietly. "I apologize" she nodded.

Fay Feirings: I stared at her for a moment before continuing to scan the perimeter "I hadn't realized you were prying or criticizing. Anyway there is very few people who do not want to do what they are meant to do, none in recent memory for sure. Our callings play to our strengths and are typically things that are versions of what we did as a toddler, before we learn to ignore our emotions. A musician will be someone who enjoyed playing with instruments at a young age, a baker is someone who cooked. As for why I got my calling, well, when I was a toddler I tended to wander off and try to make nice with the other elves, both summer and winter alike."

Wisp: Sabine smiled as the elf dismissed her apologies, having not seemed to take even a hint of offense. In fact as she continued to speak, Sabine had to chuckle at the image of a miniature version of Tanya trying to play with other elves. "That's adorable" she squeaked slightly with a soft laugh. "What happened when you tried to make nice with them?"

Fay Feirings: I thought back to those times, a tinge of nostalgia hitting me before I could push it down. "Well, I managed a small alliance between several clans of winter, and though summer was always a tough nut to crack I managed to create a neutral standing between our clan and a few clans of summer. It only took a few times of me running off and successfully starting a play session with the children of the other clans before they started talking and realized an alliance would be appropriate and I was given the calling of good will ambassador. My people have always wanted to open trading options with humans but have had difficulties engendering trust. Thus is my task. It may start with just the fleet but some day perhaps trading lines can be opened between our realms and we can share ideas and technologies." I thought about my task, it was something I was good at with elves but with humans I could tell that there would be more difficulties. The emotional barriers for one would be difficult to over come, and understanding would be another.

Wisp: Sabine smiled and nodded as she listened, continuing to walk around the perimeter of the encampment with Tayna, the smell of campfires slowly drifting towards them and the lightly slowly fading farther and farther away. She considered the different species of human like creatures she'd met and glanced over Tanya quietly. "I've met very few elves" she conceded. "How are you different from summer elves?"

Fay Feirings: I thought about it for a moment. "Summer elves don't hide their emotions, they focus on them, everything they do is colored by them. I think that is the biggest difference. While we focus on the whole for survival they focus on the individual for survival. While we find our calling as children and work toward that our entire lives, they try many different things late into their adulthoods before focusing on one or two endeavors." I thought about my interactions with summer and knew that there was more but I couldn't put a finger on it. "They, I don't know how to say it, are more, hmmm, carefree, maybe? They simply don't have to fight as hard for what they need to survive because they are Summer, they are the harvest, the animals in their fattest times, they trade their food to us and still have an abundance, we give them what we are good at, weapons and tools, things forged in a place that is simply harsher and colder. We are, at the end of the day, fundamentally different." I tried to put into words something that I felt for my entire life. How do you explain to someone who has never been to the elven realm what it means to be Summer and Winter. "One day, maybe I can take you there and show you what I mean, I'm finding it very difficult to put into words."
Wisp: As Sabine listened she found herself identifying much more with the culture of the summer elves that that which Tayna had described earlier of the winter elves. "Sounds like humans" she said softly, a small smile on her lips. "I'd like that!" she said excitedly as Tanya offered the possibility of taking her to the elven realms. A recruit glanced up from her duties at the sound of Sabine's voice and Sabine coughed quietly, restraining her excitement. "So..what do you think the dragons will be like? Anna, a girl from my home town who also joined, said they were quite huge and frightening."
I nodded, forcing myself to stay in the conversation instead of avoiding the emotional outburst she displayed. I touched the four parallel scars on my cheek and thought about what I'd been told. "I don't know, I was told they are highly intelligent creatures, very large with varying reports of their capabilities with fire breathing. I've never seen one though, just pictures. I suppose they could be considered frightening but if we are to bond with them then they have to be amenable to such a bond, so possibly just their appearance is such." I did not voice the emotion that popped up for a second in me, the one that said I was more excited to meet one than scared at what they could look like. Dark elves were known to be fearless, fear being simply another emotion we were to tame, but I was always considered more so because of my involvement with the alliances, my lack of fear as a toddler causing me to wander off and play where most children dare not go.

Wisp: Sabine nodded as Tanya shared what she knew about the creatures. Sabine had heard it all as well, though often with more embellishments and flourish. Her grandmother had been a dragon rider, and her aunt. Her mother, unable to overcome a fear of heights had served elsewhere for the queen. Still the line of succession was sufficiently unbroken. Yet Sabine had not really been allowed to interact with them. Her grandmother died when she was very young and her aunt was a rather eccentric sort who had recently been retired and chose to live in solitude. Too consumed with her excitement and trying to be a good look out, she did not notice Tanya's movements nor the scars on her cheek in the low light. "I wonder what the bonding ceremony will be like! We get to watch the second years when we get there I hear, my aunt would never speak of it. Apparently it is super secret or something" she bubbled in a conspiratory manner.
Fay Feirings: I watched my partner as she practically danced with excitement, wondering what it would be like to feel like that. "I have heard no tales of the bonding, simply that it happens." My own people only knew what they'd gleaned from their few interactions with humans and tales other elven kind brought back to our realm. As far as I knew I was one of the first of my own kind to join the fleet so there were no tales passed down through dark elves of the bonding. "With such large creatures it's probably rather dangerous but certainly doable, otherwise they would not have a fleet of dragon riders." I nodded, knowing my logic was sound. I knew our conversation had mostly been her asking questions so I thought it would be appropriate for me to ask some questions, find out more about my partner, assimilate. "What of you, do you have any siblings?"
Wisp: "True" Sabine nodded, unable to argue with her logic but slightly disappointed that the girl did not share her curiosity. She smiled at the question and answered enthusiastically. "I have an older sister but she is apprenticing under my mother. She is married and her husband takes care of their two kids. They have twin girls and they are the most adorable things ever! I also have a younger brother, is is not yet married but several of the neighborhood girls have come a calling." She did not mention her own relationship status as it had not been the question, yet the talk of family had brought to mind her betrothed's face and her thoughts wondered how he was faring. She had seen him only a few days before, yet this was going to be the longest they'd been apart so far.
Fay Feirings: I listened to her response and stored that information away for further reference. "It sounds like a" I paused, trying to think of the appropriate word. "pleasant family." I wanted that to be an acceptable response, but I had a feeling it wasn't. Three days in the human world and I could tell it was going to be difficult to pick up the mannerisms and correct responses to people. This was good practice. "What do your mother and sister do?" Again, I wasn't sure if this was an acceptable question, Sabine had mentioned prying before and wasn't sure if this question was categorized as such.
Wisp: Sabine glanced at her at first, unsure how to judge whether the "pleasant" family comment was meant in sincerity or if there was any malice behind it, yet thinking back to how Tanya had responded in their conversation so far, Sabine chalked it up to the elf's pericular outlook on life and dismissed it as genuine. "Mother is a civilian advisor to the queen, my sister will apprentice under her until she retires. Basically they meet with civilian leaders within the kingdom and pass on their concerns to the queen.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:13 pm

(Part 2)
Fay Feirings: I nodded. "That sounds like a very important job, it must bring your family much honor" Honor was something my people could understand. We didn't necessarily put a lot of stock in it but we understood the premise and respected it. My gaze passed over the darkening prairie and I lifted the torch. "Do you want to light it?" I didn't think it was a good idea, my night vision clear in the moonlight but I wanted to give my partner the opportunity to should she feel the need.

Wisp: "Yes" Sabine said quietly, "much honor..much danger" she finished, her voice growing less bubbly. She glanced at the torch as Tanya offered it. "Do you think we should? Might attract attention." she noted thoughtfully. "I suppose our talking is doing a good job of it though" she said with a small laugh. "I can see okay for now" she shrugged "lets wait." She glanced at her companion once more "Unless you wish to light it?" she asked, suddenly realizing that perhaps Tanya

Fay Feirings: I lowered the torch, satisfied with my partner's response. "I agree. Lighting it would only reduce our night vision and make us easy targets." I stretched a little, realizing my shoulders were tight from the march and the patrol. "Just another hour or so before we report in." I caught movement in the night sky and watched as an owl silently dove to the field, a moment later rising again with a small creature in it's claws. Something had been bothering me since we stopped for the night and we'd been put on patrol. "Do you really think there is danger from your own people out here? Your dragon fleet protects them, wouldn't they be grateful?"

Wisp: Sabine smiled, glad that they'd reached an agreement on something, no matter how small. They continued in silence, the sound of crickets providing a backdrop to the sounds of the camp. Yet the silence between them did not feel uncomfortable and while a new sensation for Sabine, it was a pleasant one. She nodded at Tanya's observation and glanced into the darkness from time to time. She tilted her head and considered Tanya's question. "Do your people ever have disagreements?" She asked after a moment.

Fay Feirings: I thought back, trying to remember. "I believe so, though they are rather civil most of the time. Any disagreements go immediately to the tribunal." Then I thought back to my mother's sister. "In full discloser, some of my people become malicious as a result of their up bringing, not all the clans teach children to control their emotions as mine did and some can be quite brutal, though my clan has always disagreed with their methods and we have very little contact with those clans. They have abandoned the original purpose of restricting ones' emotions. But in answer to your question, yes we have disagreements."

Wisp: "In human culture" Sabine spoke slowly trying to explain, "sometimes the people don't agree with the queen. Or those in control. They begin to act on fear and anger. When that happens, they... " she searched for the right words "they become like animals... Unpredictable and dangerous" she finished. "When I was young, my family's estate was vandalized, my father feared for my safety for many weeks.."

Fay Feirings: I nodded, it was reasons like that for which my people abandoned emotions. "Fear and anger are volatile emotions, two of the first for us to learn to control. For what it's worth, it was unfortunate that your family were the victims of vandals but it's good that you were not hurt." I thought back though to my original question. "Why do people react with fear of their own government. I do not understand."

Wisp: "Thank you" Sabine said with a nod. "People like to feel in control I suppose. Sometimes they feel like they've been treated unfairly I guess"

Fay Feirings: I still didn't understand but I let it go, this problem was probably ingrained in their society as controlling ones emotions was in mine. I tried to think of a new subject. "What are some things that you do for.... fun" The word felt strange in my mouth but I tried to ignore it. Fun was something that was supposed to be important to humans, it would be prudent to learn what that entailed.
 
Wisp: There was a moment of silence but then Tanya filled it once more. Sabine considered for a moment trying to think of what she did for fun. "I like horseback riding" she noted happily, "and..sledding, I like hiking, and reading. Do you have libraries in your realm?"

Fay Feirings: I tried my hand at a smile, I'm pretty sure it came across as some kind of deformity "Those sound most enjoyable" I nodded at her question. "Yes, we have libraries, books are the frequent medium of choice when filling time before sleep, though most of the books are non fiction
Wisp: The darkness hid the elf's attempt at a smile, but Sabine felt assured of Tanya's appreciation for her response regardless. She smiled as Tanya talked of the books in her realm and her curiosity was piqued. "What subjects do your people enjoy the most?"

Fay Feirings: I tugged my pony tail tight again as we walked, the constant movement having made it slip loose. "History, traditionally war history. We are a fighting race, protecting our realm from the Fae or from the environment, Winter Court especially, hence why weapons are one of our main exports. But culture is always appreciated as well. There is a waiting list on most of the books that come from the human realm as we don't have many of them and humans are so vastly different. My people say that acquiring knowledge is everyone's second calling."

Wisp: "I couldn't bring many" Sabine said after listening to Tanya's description, "but I brought a few books with me. Would you like to read them? Most of them are novels.." Sabine admitted.

Fay Feirings: My ears perked up at that. A chance to read human books without having to wait for months while others read them first. I had to fight to control the rush of emotion that threatened. "I would very my appreciate that." I spoke with a normal voice, the emotions having ebbed as quickly as the had rushed me. "I also have a few books with me from my people, if you'd like you can read them as well, they've been translated quite well to your language." I hoped she'd take my offer, owing someone a debt was not something I wanted to do after just a few days here.
Wisp: "I would love that!" Sabine nearly squeaked happily. She had worried whether making friends in the fleet would prove difficult, as the only other recruit she knew was Anna and while she valued the girl's company, there were times where she lacked a certain uniqueness about her that held Sabine's interest. Tanya on the other hand, there was something exotic and..intelligent about her. She seemed incredibly wise to Sabine somehow and that was something Sabine desired to learn. "You are welcome to pitch your tent near mine," she offered in a friendly manner. "We can pitch them when we're relieved and exchange books over dinner"

Fay Feirings: I closed my eyes and nodded. "That would be a very welcome distraction, thank you" I looked at the moon. It had risen over the horizon fully now. "Another half an hour or so and we will need to report." I made the comment mostly to myself, now finding it difficult to wait that long to get exchange books.

Wisp: "Your welcome!" Sabine said with a broad smile. She nodded at Tanya's observation and as they continued to talk off and on the last half hour of their shift passed quickly enough. Still the food smelled amazing and Sabine found it hard to concentrate. Soon another pair of recruits relieved them and after passing on the report of no incidents, the pair headed off to pitch their tents. Sabine found them a spot on the outer circle of tents, close enough that they were definitly within the boundaries of the encampment, but on the edge enough that they wouldn't be disturbed by the loud talking of the other recruits. The two tents pitched, one collected a bucket of bison droppings for fire tinder from a wagon while the other rolled out bed rolls and dug out food rations. Soon a small fire was crackling and some resemblance of a dried soup was warming and rehydrating in a small pot. Sabine nibbled on some jerky, before turning and digging into her pack. "Here you go" she said cheerfully. She handed Tanya one of her most treasured books, a romance novel she picked up at a used book merchant that she imagined had traveled the globe. It was titled "The herder's daugher".

Fay Feirings: I followed Sabine back to the camp as she found us a place to pitch our tents. She seemed to know what to look for and I was satisfied to see that she had chosen a quiet place in the camp. We collected the necessary things to start a fire and cook food. I'd never had a reconstituted stew of jerky and dried vegetables before. At first I wasn't sure if I was going to want to eat it, but my stomach grumbled and I had to admit it smelled acceptable. I sat down next to Sabine and accepted the pro-offered book. I read the title and wondered why a herder's daughter's life was so important that it was chronicled. I reached into my own pack and pulled out one of the better translated books in my collection,  book that described the best way to forge weapons and which weapons are best in which situation, a fascinating read. "Here is one of my own, it's been translated by double spacing the elven print and printing the human language beneath so you might even be able to pick up some elven."

Wisp: Sabine smiled broadly at the offered book and began to read, her eyes darting between the known human words and those in Elven. Her lips moved, trying to say them quietly, not intending to be a bother, but wrapped up in the language even more so than the book itself. She went quiet for a moment, her eyes scanning the page as she took a moment to read the description of one particularly effective if gruesome weapon. "Oh my.." she uttered softly.

Fay Feirings: I heard her trying to pronounce the elven tongue. She'd been doing well so far but I knew it was only a matter of time before she hit something she would have difficulty with. "If you have any questions about pronunciation or definition, don't hesitate to ask, I'd appreciate having someone around who can speak my native language." I then turned my attention to the book about the herder's daughter. I read the first few pages and my eyebrows furrowed. I surmised this book must be fiction but I'd never read anything with such flowery language. Still, reading a human book was such a rare treat still I continued.

Wisp: "Thank you!" Sabine said with a flash of a smile before furrowing her brows once more upon reading more of the text. "How do people with..so little emotion create such weapons?”

Fay Feirings: I looked up from a description of something that I was going to have to ask about anyway. "We focus on a swift kill. Each weapon is good for a specific purpose and scenario. Causing long lasting agony is not something we want, though occasionally it does happen. The purpose of that book is to teach people which weapon is right for which scenario and what it can do if you use it correctly or incorrectly." I lifted the book in my hands. "Perhaps you can explain something to me. This farm hand, why does he make the herder's daughter moist, I've never heard of someone perspiring by simply looking at someone else"

Wisp: "Oh I see.." Sabine said thoughtfully as she considered the book in her hands again. Perhaps the descriptions were actually merciful in a way, after all, if the wrong weapon were used, perhaps it would prolong the agony. She puzzled over it silently before looking up at Tanya's question. "Oh. Uh.. you know..she..um..moist..down..there. Have..have..um." She considered for a moment realizing Tanya probably had not had sex before. "In humans..when we are sexually excited things.." she shifted awkwardly "things lubricate.." she said stumbling over her words slightly, a red tinge on her cheeks.

Fay Feirings: I watched her cheeks redden as she explained, understanding dawning on me. "Oh, she began to excrete. We do the same, though I've never heard of it being called moist before. I've never experienced sex myself, it's not something I probably ever will either, but I understand the basic mechanics. In our culture we don't feel sexually aroused by appearances. We're told as children that sex is only for procreation but the gods made it feel good so that we would want to procreate when the time came. But we must fight the urge to do so too frequently so that we can focus on raising one child at a time. Too much can cause one's emotions to take control and that would be unacceptable." I continued reading, the new knowledge of the meaning of the words making me understand the scene slightly better. "So, her heaving bosom, is that another euphemism?"

Wisp: Sabine listened as Tanya explained, nodding as the young elf began to understand the scene better. She bit her tongue from saying 'that sounds awful' to just uttering "oh I see" She for one was rather glad that she was human and not a dark elf as her friend was, such restrictions on sex seemed..stifling. "In human culture" Sabine noted "it is considered healthy for the female body to have sex often, prolonging life or something like that" she noted though still blushing slightly. "Yes" she affirmed to Tanya's question "it means she was breathing quickly and deeply, often associated with a racing heartbeat. We're..uh..human females are aroused by sight rather easily sometimes." she blushed again.

Fay Feirings: I nodded once. "Doesn't that get exhausting. How do you ever get things done." I spoke mostly under my breath and continued to read. It was a few chapters later that I had my next question. "What is a throbbing member? And why is he putting it into her." I read the line again to make sure I said it correctly "Deep pleasure chasm?" I looked at Sabine, I knew this probably had to do with sex again but my basic understanding of sex was not enough to put the pieces together on this one.

Wisp: Sabine didn't answer her first question, just chuckling slightly and looking back at her own reading material, her eyes widening as it described death and destruction at a detail she was not used to and a tone, rather frighteningly cold. "Hmm? Oh..his penis" she said quietly, not really pulling herself from the book this time. She glanced up at Tanya's perplexed face, suppressing a laugh, "you know..it throbs, blood rushing and all that. Oh and um..well her..bits are kinda cavern or chasm like and it feels good when he.." she frowned "It does seem rather strange language I suppose" she said after a moment.

Fay Feirings: I nodded again. "I see." I turned again to the book. "What kind of book do you call this?" I'd read several chapters and had yet to understand the purpose of the book. Yet despite that I'd found that I did not want to put it down. I felt wrong in wanting to continue to read but I didn't want to stop.

Wisp: "Romance novel" Sabine said with a smile."They're written for entertainment" she explained before looking at the weapons book once more "How do you pronounce this word? Ro..la..bal..ack?"

Fay Feirings: I tilted my head slightly, unfamiliar with the word romance, but I didn't ask any other questions. I looked at the word she was asking about. "Oh, Rolibich, the second l is silent and the a is pronounced with a soft i sound, the ck has more of a hissing sound."

Wisp: "Oh I see. Rolibich. Rolibich" Sabine repeated a few times, a smile coming to her face when she pronounced it nearly correctly. "How did you learn my language so fluently?" she asked curiously. (Don't remember at this moment what Sabine's kingdom is called..but am assuming there are different dialects in each kingdom.)

Fay Feirings: I thought for a moment, turning my gaze from the book in my hands to the fire. "There are elves who's calling is to teach languages. As I said before acquiring knowledge is a second calling for everyone, so those who teach other languages do so for the purpose of better understanding of the books we acquire. I've known this dialect for several years now, though we did not cover romance novel vernacular." I picked a thin blade of grass and placed it in the book as a marker. "The soup seems to be ready, would you like a bowl?"

Wisp: Sabine nodded and glanced back at the book, smiling at Tanya's comment. "Romance novels are a brand alll to their own" she chuckled. She glanced up as Tanya spoke once more. "I'd love one thank you!" she too found a blade of grass and marked her place.

Fay Feirings: I collected two wooden bowls from my pack and scooped soup into each, taking a moment to appreciate the smooth surface of the bowls and the craftsmanship of them. They were made by Summer who always had the best craftsman even for something as simple as a bowl. I handed one to Sabine and sat back down, sipping from the edge.

Wisp: Sabine gratefully took the bowl and eagerly ate, hungry from the day's walking. As she chewed she looked curiously at the bowl, noticing the designs appreciatively. "These are beautiful" she said around chewing. "Where did you get them?"

Fay Feirings: I looked up from my own soup. "I traded a Summer elf one of my daggers for them. Summer carves them from a solid block of wood. This is one of their less extravagant pieces. They are meant for travel so they don't have the intricate designs most of their carvings have." I looked at my bowl again, a scene carved along the inner rim depicting a battle, the story continuing onto the bowl Sabine held. "They tell the story of a great dark elf who was unmatched in battle until one day he gave into his emotions for an elf of Summer. Over come with emotions his mind drifted in battle and he was slain."

Wisp: Sabine listened, staring, taken with the story until the end. She frowned, looking down at the bowl and back at Tanya. "So romantic" she muttered quietly, taking another bite of food.

Fay Feirings: I looked at her. "Romantic? It's tragic, a great warrior was lost because he loved. Warriors are lost all the time but rarely because of their mind drifting to matters of emotions, they are typically out matched in skills, particularly young warriors. It's a lesson for us all how dangerous love is and why we must protect ourselves from it." I looked to the book sitting next to me, wondering if the farm hand would suffer a similar fate because of their relationship.

Wisp: "But what about the power of love?" Sabine asked with an almost pleading tone to her voice. "What about the strength love gives us to overcome obstacles and do things that we thought were impossible?"

Fay Feirings: I tilted my head. "I have never heard such stories. We are taught that love is one of the most dangerous emotions, it can lead to all sorts of unwanted behaviors, distracting us from our calling. The only love that is over looked is the love one feels for one's child, and that is simply because it helps ensure the survival of the child, if the parents are willing to give up their own life for their child." I thought about what Sabine said about the power of love, wondering if there were merits to both arguments. "I will say that while I don't understand your statement of the power of love I don't dismiss your argument out of hand. Perhaps I will learn more as I live among your people."

Wisp: Sabine frowned as Tanya spoke of her people's view towards love. It all sounded incredibly depressing. Still, the comment that Tanya ended with made Sabine smile slightly. At least the elf seemed open to new ideas, she supposed she could be as well. "I suppose I could stand to learn a bit more about this controling ones emotions gig too.." Sabine admitted a little more reluctantly though with a teasing tone in her voice, "after all, I'll be spending the rest of my life around you if we both make the cut" she noted with a teasing smile.

Fay Feirings: I tried to smile back, not sure if I succeeded. "If that is true then I look forward to the coming years." I drank more of my soup, chewing on a piece of rehydrated meat. "The soup is better than I expected. I've never had a soup made from dried ingredients before, we usually just eat fresh things except in deep winter when we eat them dry. I've never thought to rehydrate them though."

Wisp: "As do I" Sabine said with a smile. "It is a common practice in my culture. Sometimes I wish we had more fresh food" she admitted.

Fay Feirings: *"Why don't you have more fresh food?" I looked around me at the field, it looked like tillable land, wild wheat springing up around the camp. Surely they had the means to grow fresh food. Then memories of the city sprang to mind.

Wisp: "Not enough space, not enough time I suppose" Sabine shrugged quietly and continued eating.

Fay Feirings: I nodded, her statement making sense, it took time to cook things and everything I'd seen of the human world told me it was fast paced. "It does seem much more, hmm, hurry hurry hurry, all the time in this realm. It's going to take some time to get used to, the only people who act like that in my culture are the warriors, and even they take time in the evening to relax." I finished my bowl of soup and got up for a refill, the day's march having left me very hungry. "Would you like more?"

Wisp: Sabine chuckled slightly at the observation. She couldn't argue with it and instead nodded before speaking. "Sometimes we relax. But generally relaxation is seen as a waste of time rather than a wise use of it I suppose." She considered for a moment. "What do you do to relax?" she asked finally, realizing she'd not asked earlier.

Fay Feirings: I thought about her question and looked down at the book she'd loaned me. "I read. Sometimes I do a slow stretching exercise called Trioliach similar to your yoga, it's very relaxing." I took my second bowl of soup and sat down next to her. "Occasionally I'll sit next to a brook and listen."

Wisp: Sabine accepted her offer of more food, not wanting to leave any to waste and chewed thoughtfully as she listened. "What do you listen for?" she asked, tilting her head.

Fay Feirings: I looked at her, slightly unsure of what she meant. "I don't listen for anything, I simply listen. It is relaxing" I chewed another bite of rehydrated beef. "Is there something I should be listening for?" The question came out without me thinking about it, suddenly unsure if I'd been doing it wrong my entire life.

Wisp: "I suppose not" Sabine shrugged, "I just thought perhaps you listen to the water or the animals or the wind or, I don't know" Sabine said with a laugh.

Fay Feirings: "Oh, well, I do listen to all of those things, I just don't focus on any one sound." I chewed another piece of rehydrated food, a potato this time I thought. "I've heard humans also keep animals as pets. Do you have any?" I thought back to my parents panther, a sleek beast they kept around for protection and wondered if I would ever get my own pet.

Wisp: Sabine nodded at Tanya's response and kept eating, she smiled when Tanya mentioned pets. "I had a dog when I was young, she was very smart" Sabine noted. "Do your people keep pets?"

Fay Feirings: I swallowed the last bite of food, seriously considering getting up and getting a third portion, and responded. "Yes, we do, though mostly for a purpose. My parents had a panther for protection, Jasmine. She was a beautiful creature."

Wisp: Sabine blinked slowly "A..a panther..you kept a panther as a pet.." she said slowly.

Fay Feirings: I nodded. "Of course, for protection. Many of my people kept them as pets, they were very common in our realm and if a mother is ever killed we would track down her cubs and raise them as our own. It is the only humane thing to do, loss of such life would not be acceptable."
Wisp: Sabine listened, no longer surprised at the matter of fact tone in Tanya's voice. "Of course" she said almost apologetically. "Our pets are just normally..smaller" she admitted.

Fay Feirings: "Ah, I see. We also have smaller pets. Summer has dogs for herding, we have them for alarm, at that point it doesn't matter how big they are as long as they bark. Cats for keeping pests away from our homes and storage areas. I've heard

Fay Feirings: *I've heard that it's strange that we do eat meat but we value life so much. I don't understand how though." I got up and filled my bowl one last time, there wasn't much left but enough to fill Sabine's bowl again if she wanted to.

Wisp: Sabine nodded "We also have dogs for herding and for alarm. Some have dogs to guard and attack. Generally cats do the same for us as you. Some people also keep rabbits or even rats i've heard." Sabine got a second bowl and considered Tanya's comment. "I don't think it is strange. I was always raised to respect life,  yet I quite enjoy meat myself" she noted.

Fay Feirings: I nodded, enjoying my last bowl of soup. "Why do you eat so few meals a day? Aren't you always hungry going so long between eating?" I chewed a piece of meat and could feel that almost full feeling that comes toward the end of the meal. "I appreciate that you don't think it's strange. I don't know how to explain it to others, it's refreshing to meet someone else who understands"

Wisp: Sabine smiled at the sense of understanding between them. Her family had always bought meat at the local butcher, but a respect for life in general was always upheld. "Sometimes" she admitted, slowly down as she sipped at her bowl and found herself growing almost too full to go on. "Humans actually don't need that much food I suppose. How many meals does your culture have?"

Fay Feirings: I thought back. "It depends on the day, a long day may have as many as seven meals but we never have fewer than five. We eat communally usually, the people whose calling it is to cook, bring food out to the central gathering area. Sometimes we eat meals at home, especially during foul weather, but it's not as flavorful or as skillfully cooked."

Wisp: "Seven!" Sabine said with a surprised laugh. "How do you fit that many in?"

Fay Feirings: I tilted my head. "They aren't always large meals, we only have one or two of those a day, but every couple of hours it's time to eat again. It's especially important in winter when we require more energy to stay warm. How do you have so much to do that you can't eat that much?"

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:16 pm

(part 3)
Wisp: "I see" Sabine said as she glanced down at her bowl once more. "I don't know," she shrugged "busy busy busy I suppose. Do you have enough food with you to eat what you need while we're traveling?" she asked suddenly concerned.

Fay Feirings: I shook my head. "No, I did not foresee eating so infrequently, I'll be fine though. I have some dried foods like you for dinners and breakfasts, though now that I know it's flavorful to put them in a soup I will certainly be doing that, they seem to stretch farther that way as well. Perhaps when we get to the cliffs I'll be able to eat more at meal times to make up for the fewer opportunities I will have during the day." I had never gone hungry before but I would have to learn to accept it. With a military you couldn't expect the entire movement to cater to the individual's specific needs.

Wisp: Sabine nodded before adding "If you ever need more food, I am sure that I will have extra" she offered. "Perhaps they will also let us hunt along the way" she continued "I will ask in the morning" she said resolutely.

Fay Feirings: "I appreciate your offer and I will probably end up taking you up on it eventually. I don't know what I can offer you in return yet but I will find something when the time comes." I looked at her when she said she would ask about hunting. Hunting was one of the skills I had not bothered learning, I disliked it when my weapons had moving parts and I had not heard of an effective method of hunting without such weapons. "You can hunt?"

Wisp: Sabine smiled as Tanya accepted her offer and then tilted her head, surprised that a dark elf would not know how to hunt. "Yes, every female of class is taught it" she blurted before realizing how snobbish that might sound. "I mean.."she looked down at her bowl. "My mother insisted" she tried to explain.

Fay Feirings: "Ah, I see. I had the option but I dislike weapons with moving parts. I'd take a sword to a bow any day." I thought back to my training as a child. "All young people are given the option. Most choose to train, I went to one class, picked up a bow, fired it and knew that I would never be proficient in the weapon so I left. The clan understood, many people have similar understanding of their proficiencies."

Wisp: "I suppose you could hunt with a sword.." Sabine pointed out, though somewhat teasingly. "What about snares, where you taught how to use those?"

Fay Feirings: I sipped the last sip of soup, finally full, and looked at the ground. "I could never get them to stay, or trigger, when they were supposed to." I looked at her. "I really don't do well with moving parts, or perhaps they don't do well with me. I was told by my instructor I would never have the delicate hand needed to set a snare. He suggested a pit trap but that seemed like a lot of effort for very little pay off. I learned the skill but have never used it."

Fay Feirings: My eyes got wide at Sabine's generosity. "I really couldn't. I have nothing I could teach you in return and, really, I'm not good with moving parts. Maybe one day, in the distance future, I could be good with hunting, maybe. I could not be in your debt though, not until I have something I could teach you or give you in return that is of equal value and that is something that would be very valuable." I shook my head, hoping I didn't offend her but knowing that I could not put myself in her debt in such a way.

Wisp: Sabine shook her head slightly, ready to deny that Tanya would owe her anything but she thought better of it after pausing. "Very well, but I look forward to learning what you will teach" she noted, implying that Tanya wasn't going to get off the hook that easy. With a smile she offered a hand to shake on it "to our future trading of teaching".

Fay Feirings: I nodded, glad that I wouldn't be in her debt for teaching me just yet. I looked at her hand and tilted my head. "I am sorry, I don't understand why you are sticking your hand out." I placed my hand on my chest and bowed slightly. "But I agree, I look forward to one day exchanging teachings."

Wisp: Sabine chuckled and brought her hand back to her chest, bowing slightly as well, imitating Tanya. "Humans clasp and shake hands" she explained.

Fay Feirings: I spoke without thinking. "That's a strange custom, couldn't one of the participants of the hand clasp draw the other close and stab them? It sounds dangerous." I rethought my words after I said them. "I apologize, I meant that it would not be something my people would do because it would put you in a potentially vulnerable situation, we have considerably fewer rules against killing a person if it is for the greater good."
Wisp: Sabine nodded and was about to explain when Tanya apologized. "But see.. That's why." Sabine stated and then realized Tanya was still very lost. "It is a sign of agreement, of trust" Sabine explained.

Fay Feirings: "Trust. I see, you trust the person enough not to stab you when you shake hands and by extension trust them to hold their end of their bargain." I put my hand out, trying to mimic the gesture Sabine had used. "Then it is agreed, one day we will each teach the other something."
Wisp: "Exactly!" Sabine said with a smile and grasped Tanya's hand as she extended it, shaking it gently, but firmly, she nodded "agreed". She glanced around an noticed that many of the other recruits had bedded down, though not all. "I suppose we should sleep," she mentioned "do you have enough blankets?"

Fay Feirings: I returned Sabine's smile, getting more comfortable with the gesture. "Yes, I suppose we should, it will be an early morning. It is very warm here, even at night, I have a thin blanket that will suffice." I bowed slightly to the young woman. "May the night see you through until the dawn." And, after a moment, crawled into my tent, pulling my thin blanket over me and kicking a foot out to keep me from overheating.

Wisp: "And you as well" Sabine returned with a smile. Checking the fire, she doused it quietly to insure it would not spread during the night. Crawling into her tent, she pulled the blanket over her and fell asleep. She awoke as a rumble echoed over the prairie and heard worried voices among the tents around them. Crawling out, she looked out into the darkness, the rumbling growing closer as dust made her cough. Her head whipped around as she heard the call go out from the sentries "stampede!"

Fay Feirings: I woke with a start, the rumbling almost felt like an earthquake or an avalanche. I heard the sentries call out a stampede and launched myself from my tent, scooping up my borrowed book as I went. I wasn't sure what to do and looked to Sabine for how to handle the situation. "What direction is it coming from?"

Wisp: Sabine scrambled out as well, grabbing her borrowed book and stuffing it into her pack before slinging it on her back. She glanced around, trying to get a sense of direction from the chaos around them. "Get to the wagon! Crawl under it, they should go around it" she suggested and glanced around before heading in that direction herself. She wanted to go help in some way, but she had no way of knowing what could be done. What about the horses? Surely they'd scatter..

Fay Feirings: I grabbed my pack and sprinted to the nearest wagon, trusting Sabine would know what to do. The closest thing I'd ever come to a stampede was a herd of deer slowly making their way through our village in the wee hours of the morning. I knew what they were, Summer had to deal with them and we'd heard of them but never how to react. My first reaction was to find the direction they were coming from and run as fast as I could in a sideways direction to their path, but not knowing how wide the stampede was that could be dangerous. I dove under the wagon and fought down the urge to run away.

Wisp: Sabine ran towards a wagon after Tanya, sliding to stop as she saw a lone horse tied, stomping and pulling at it's reins. She glanced at the wagon and back at the horse. Running to the wagon she threw her pack under it next to Tanya "Watch that for me!" With that she ran back to the horse, slowing as she got next to it and uttering calming words before untying it, tying the lead around to the other side of the halter and flipping it over the horse's head like reins, pulling herself up, she gripped its barrel, glad that it was a narrower horse as opposed to a barrel and urged it forward, before the mass of buffalo that was quickly emerging from the herd. As she galloped forward, darting around tents and sometimes over them, she glanced back under her arm, seeing a growing following of horses behind her that had been loose and were now forming a herd in front of and amongst the buffalo. Kicking the horse faster, she found herself being overtaken by the mass of stampeding flesh and hair, choking on the dust, she clung to the horse, knowing if she fell, she'd be trampled for sure.

Fay Feirings: I stare at Sabine as she ran off. Into a stampede. Running to what I could only imagine as a spooked horse. I hadn't the slightest idea of what I could do but I did not want to be stuck under that wagon alone. Despite that I stayed put, the stampede seeming to take forever to pass by. Sabine had been correct that the buffalo went around it, so I was, in fact, safe. Once the stampede had gone I got up and looked around me, the camp was devastated, not a single tent remained standing. I grabbed my pack as well as Sabine's and looked for some kind of assembly of people to know what to do next. There were still a few hours till sunup but I doubted that anyone would be getting anymore sleep, especially me, so I reached in my bag and grabbed out an energy packed trail mix, putting it in a pouch for easier reach.

Wisp: After some time the stampede began to slow and Sabine was able to move her horse towards the edge of the herd and finally out. Glancing around as the herd began to grave, she spotted the lead mare with a rope dangling from her halter. Slowly moving towards her, Sabine sidled closer, snagging the rope and leading her back along the path of plowed prairie grass. After some snorts and calling, the other horses that had joined the stampede fell in line behind them. She arrived at the destroyed camp an hour or so later, exhausted and extremely thirsty. She spotted Tanya amongst the milling recruits and officers trying to rescue what they could. "Tanya" she called before coughing.

Fay Feirings: I was among the recruits picking through the wreckage for undestroyed items. The tents were ripped but could probably be patched with a lot of effort, most of the food was on the carts so most of it survived. I looked up when I heard my name and rushed to Sabine. "What were you thinking? You could have been killed!" It took me a moment to rein in my emotions, as mute as they may be, of worry for the girl I'd made friends with that night. "I am, relieved, you are okay." I wasn't sure how else to put it. I'd never been faced with something so close to death before. Not everyone had made it out of the stampede and injuries were being cataloged and a few deaths had occurred.

Wisp: Sabine glanced at her, surprised slightly by her worry yet too sapped to really comment on it. "I'm okay" she assured before coughing again. "I'm glad you are alright as well." In fact she was very relieved that Tanya had stayed under the wagon and not been injured, she was just too tired to express it. "Where's commander Roach?" The majority of the herd of horses milled about behind her, one or two had been lost in the stampede, unable to escape their ties they'd been run over, another few had simply galloped free, yet she'd saved and recovered the majority, and for that she was thankful.

Fay Feirings: I waved behind me. "She's back there, trying to get things under control. Many recruits are speaking of going back home." I could not blame them, if they could not handle danger they should not be in a military unit of any kind. I offered Sabine my canteen of Toronach, an elven fermented boysenberry juice that was good at calming nerves and was sweet on the palate. "She is rather busy now but she will be relieved that the horses returned, albeit fewer than we'd started with."

Wisp: Sabine nodded at first, her eyes hardening at the mention of some going home. Cowards. "If they can't stand a stampede then good riddance" she said with another cough. She gratefully took the juice and though surprised at its contents, found it calming and smooth. She wiped her lips and handed it back gratefully to Tanya. "Thank you" she smiled "I should report in, you'll be around here?" She asked hopefully, reluctant to lose track of her friend again.

Fay Feirings: I took the canteen back and put the strap back over my shoulder, a little stunned at the bitterness in her voice. "The majority of them want to leave, I believe the commander is trying to keep a few, I heard her mutter something about quota. I will be around here though, I've only found a few salvageable things, the next week is going to be very difficult if we can't get resupplied on some things." I returned my gaze to the ground.

Wisp: Sabine nodded and urged the horse forward. Coming to a halt near the commander, Sabine slipped off the horse, leaning on it for a moment before walking forward. "Recruit Sabine reporting for duty" she said with an attempt at a salute. Commander Roach looked over, surprised. Her face brightened at the sight then soured when seeing how tired Sabine looked. "Thank you recruit, good job." She eyed the horses and then back at Sabine. "I take it your ready to quit to." She uttered bitterly. "No ma'am" Sabine clipped back. Commander Roach eyed her before nodding. "Dismissed". Sabine nodded and walked slowly back to Tanya. She looked around at the destruction around them, frowning at the conversations of leaving. "Are you leaving?" She asked suddenly.

Fay Feirings: I looked up again at Sabine's approach, startled at her question. "Of course not. It was a close call with death but I believe your culture and mine share a saying. 'What does not kill you makes you stronger'. Admittedly the closest I've come to a stampede is the herd of deer that would graze through my clan's village on foggy spring mornings, but it was over far quicker than a battle would be and was considerably less dangerous. I assume you aren't leaving, you have too much determination in your eyes."

Wisp: "Indeed!" Sabine smiled at Tanya's use of a famous saying. She had to smile broader when Tanya mentioned the only similar event in her life so far. "You assume right" Sabine nodded and glanced around. "Well..at least our packs and the books were safe" she noted with a glance. "What else could you find? Oh there's a pot" she noted before walking over to grab it. "Has there been any talk of when we'll be heading out?" Grabbing another blanket and shaking out the dust, she glanced around. "We're only a day out, it shouldn't take long to get resupplied. She picked up a tent that was so full of holes it wasn't going to be able to be repaired and bundled it up. "Well I suppose we can use this one to patch another" she offered.

Fay Feirings: I nodded. "I've been stacking repairable tents over here." I indicated a small pile of folded canvas forms. "And ones that can't be repaired over here." I pointed to a larger pile of canvas in various states of scrap. "Items that are still functional are over here and completely destroyed items are piled over there." I sighed and reached into my pouch of trail mix. "Trail mix?"

Wisp: Sabine nodded, impressed with Tanya's system and fully willing to abide by it. Setting the scrap tent in the pile, she gratefully accepted the trail mix and continued to go about finding items. A bent pot here, a coffee cup there. Soon their assigned area of the camp was looking sorted if dismal. Sabine glanced up as a second year approached. "Commander Roach and half of the second years are heading back to the city for supplies. Those intending to be dismissed from the service should head back with them. Do either of you wish to be dismissed?" "No, ma'am" Sabine said quickly. The second year glanced at Tanya.

Fay Feirings: I tossed a slightly dented but still useable frying pan into the still functional pile and ate another handful of trail mix. A second year approached and I looked up, listening to the news. "No ma'am, any instructions while they are away?" I would almost be grateful if there weren't any so that I could get started on tent patching.

Wisp: "Damage control" The second year said with a sigh. "You two are doing good, keep doing it. Second year Ashton will be in command while we're away. Repair what you can. She'll arrange hunting parties if needed. Stay on the lookout for more herds but there shouldn't be another so soon.

Fay Feirings: "Yes Ma'am" I nodded and turned back to my work as the second year left to speak to the next group. The rest of the camp was turning into piles similar to the ones that surround Sabine and I. "At least we are making quick work of the damage."

Wisp: "Yes ma'am" Sabine echoed and turned back to the piles, she glanced up at the recruits assigned to burying the fallen, straightening suddenly she looked around, where was her friend from home? She'd assumed she was okay but now where.. She looked around "how many were lost?" She asked quietly.

Fay Feirings: "I think four were lost all together. Many were severely injured, I'm not sure if they are staying or going back with the commander. It would be a shame if they were dismissed solely because of injuries, especially if they still want to stay in." I wiped my brow, still getting used to the climate of this realm and leaned down to pick up a single shoe that was in fairly good condition. "Should I put this in the functional pile or the trash pile, it could have a mate somewhere." I pondered the question for a moment before looking at Sabine.

Wisp: "Do you know the names of the lost?" Sabine asked, unintentionally ignoring Tanya's question.

Fay Feirings: I stopped for a moment. "Carly, Jeninie, Danielle, and Harina I believe. The injured list is much longer, they did not release all those names." I tossed the shoe to the edge of the functional pile just in case I found its mate in functional condition. "If you are looking for someone you should go to the triage area. I will go with you if you wish"

Wisp: Sabine sighed quietly in relief that Anna's name was not among them, still she wondered whether she was among the injured. "If it would not be too much trouble?" she asked after a moment, glancing at Tanya. They were already ahead of the other teams in regards to clean up and they could stand taking a break. Besides, she wanted to know if her friend from home would be going home or not.

Fay Feirings: I nodded and tosses the mug handle I'd been holding into the trash pile. "It is this way." I began walking toward the collection of blankets spread on the ground, people in various states of consciousness and pain lay upon them. "Who are you looking for? Perhaps I can help you find her."

Wisp: Sabine smiled gratefully and glanced after the mug handle as it was tossed away. It occured to her the thought of those four lives who'd been lost, tossed away like that handle. She shook her head and sighed, following Tanya. As they neared the blankets, Sabine's eyes scanned those unconscious and those shifting, trying to stay comfortable. Shade was being erected for them and a second year was in charge of a small number of recruits trained in first aid. "Anna Devon" she uttered quietly. "She's a childhood friend" she mentioned, her eyes scanning the rows.

Fay Feirings: I looked around. "What does she look like?" I thought about calling her name but decided not to, if she was unconscious it wouldn't do much good and those wounded who were sleeping should not be disturbed.

Wisp: "Um" Sabine thought for a moment, bringing her friend's face to mind. "Shorter, red hair, green eyes, little heavy." She described.

Fay Feirings: I looked for a girl fitting Anna's description. I spotted a heavier girl with red hair but her eyes were closed and the way she was positioned told me she was sleeping, no one would lay an unconscious person out on their side with one knee bent up. "Is that her?"

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:36 pm

Sabine glanced over where Tanya was pointing searching for her friend's face. The girl matched her given description but sadly was not her. "No.." she said disappointed "There she is!" she said suddenly and hurried over. "Anna! Are you okay?" she asked the girl who'd just been helped into a sitting position and had a sling on her arm and multiple cuts on her face.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:42 pm

I began scanning again when she said no but stopped when she shouted that she'd spotted her friend and began to follow her. When we were about twenty yards away I decided to hold back while Sabine ran to her friend, not wanting to impose on what could be a private moment. I saw the condition of Anna and was thankful for Sabine's sake that she hadn't been mortally wounded.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:50 pm

Anna gave a weak smile to her approaching friend "I'm okay. They say I have a really nasty sprain from catching myself when I fell into the shallow gully over there, but those damn buffalo jumped right over" she said with a cocky grin. "You okay? You're filthy" she noted, not acknowledging the fact that she herself didn't look all that spiffy. "Ya I'm fine, brought back the horses" Sabine shrugged and offered Anna some water. Glancing behind her, she motioned for Tanya "Tanya, meet Anna, Anna, meet Tanya, she's awesome!"

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:00 pm

I walked forward at Sabine's beckoning, nodding to Anna. "May the sun rise ever warm upon your family." I placed my hand on my chest and bowed slightly. The saying was an old greeting for elves but it didn't translate well, it was much more beautiful in my native tongue, but it held the same meaning, especially among Winter. Raising from my bow I tilted my head, still chewing over Sabine's introduction. "I do not know what awesome means so I can not tell you whether that is accurate or not."

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:07 pm

Anna smiled wider at Tanya's greeting, unsure of whether the elf was being theatrical or not. "And to you" she said with a bit of bewilderment. She glanced at Sabine, almost as if to say 'is she for real' as the elf continued but did not voice it. "Well Sabine's pretty picky, so if she says you're awesome I believe her." Anna glanced at the recruit who'd been caring for her "Can I go now? I'm feeling fine, really." "Yes, but make sure to take some more birch bark in a few hours when your arm starts hurting again. The recruit handed a leather packet of herbs to Sabine. "I assume you'll look out for her? Her assigned partner went back with the others." Sabine glanced at Tanya before nodding "Ya, we'll look out for her" she offered with a teasing grin to Anna.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:16 pm

I nodded at what Anna said, still unsure if awesome was a compliment or not. I knew the literal definition of course but it made no sense in the context of the conversation and I decided not to pursue the questioning at that time. As we walked back through the destruction to our area of responsibility I glanced at Sabine and Anna. "How do you two know each other?" I hoped to learn a bit more about Anna, if she would be in our care, for lack of a better word, I assumed that we would be interacting and we would be well served to get to know each other.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:22 pm

Anna hobbled alongside them as they walked back. While only her arm was actually injured, she was sore all over and hardly the spunky, bright eyed red head that Sabine was used to. Sabine and her glanced at each other as Tanya asked how they met. "We lived across the street from each other" Sabine explained. "We've just..always known each other" Anna nodded trying to think of when they first met. "My older sister is in the corps. When Sabine applied I applied too"

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:27 pm

"I see, it must have been easier to join when you knew someone else would be making the journey." I was no stranger to the wanting of companionship, I'd held a long thought that the Winter Court elves would be better served by two ambassadors but no other elf was given the calling and I was sent alone.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:35 pm

"Is there no other elves here?" Anna asked, her question innocent enough and her knowledge insufficient to the point that she did not realize that there were different types of elves. "Tanya's an ambassador from the dark elves" Sabine explained quickly, "the first" she added, proud that she'd befriended the first of the dark elves to join the fleet. "Dark elves?" Anna asked curiously.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:40 pm

I dipped my head in way of acknowledging Sabine's statement as true. "Dark elves are elves of the Winter Court. There are many elves in this world and in ours but they are as different from each other as peoples of this realm are. Normally we keep to ourselves because rarely do our callings take us out of our realm but I was chosen to hopefully start good relations between our cultures so we can open a trade route. As our information of the human realm is limited they felt the fleet was the better option as they take any race so long as they are willing to serve."

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:41 pm

Sabine and Anna listened as Tanya explained her background and Sabine nodded along, having heard basically the same information the day before. "See told you she was awesome" she nudged Anna. Anna shot her a look of 'hey, watch where you nudge' before smiling at Tanya "And how are you finding humans so far?"

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:07 pm

I looked down and thought about Anna's question. "Strange. Your people are so emotional, virtually opposite from my own people. Fascinating though, I am looking forward to learning more about humans and finding a way to bridge the gab between our cultures." I looked at Anna and tried to smile, the gesture coming more easily each time I tried to use it. I almost did not want to pick up the habit but as facial expression seemed to be paramount in communication with humans I didn't want to be misunderstood.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Thu Oct 23, 2014 4:30 pm

Sabine smiled wider as Tanya tried to imitate the gesture. Her smile was improving and for that Sabine couldn't help but feel partially responsible. She glanced around them and noted that they had fairly finished with sorting the tents. "Shall we get to repairing them then?" she asked. She glanced at Anna, noting her condition and considering what she could do to assist. "Anna, could you hold one edge of the tent fabric for us while we cut out patches and then sew them to the tents we're saving? Tanya why don't you sort the tents we're repairing by size and or type of repairs." Sabine nodded to herself as she formed a plan, unconsciously seizing command of the trio.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Mon Oct 27, 2014 9:08 pm

I followed Sabine's suggestion, my body finally feeling achy and tired from the rush of adrenaline and labor. The tents mostly had rips, things that may not even require a patch but there were a lot of holes and some fraying that would be best patched up. I made three piles, ones with holes larger than my hand, ones with holes smaller than my hand and ones with just rips that would need minor patch work if any. "I'd start with the ones that have smaller holes, that way we use the tents we have for patches most effectively, smaller holes larger holes then decide if we need to use the ones with the largest holes for repairs, then we'll get to the rips and patch them if we have the fabric and they need it." I blinked and my eyes closed for a bit too long. Reaching for my skein I drank more of the fermented juice that calmed nerves and helped ease aches and pains, chewing a handful of my mix as well before continuing the sorting process.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:05 pm

The day went slowly but the pile of damaged tents gradually diminished and the pile repaired tents grew. After some time they spread the word to come grab a tent if yours had been lost in the stampede and the pile shrunk once more with an array of muffled thank yous and tired yawns. Sabine briefly wondered how the group heading back to town was fairing. Still she could only assume that all was well and having heard no further instructions from those currently in command, she set about with the others making camp again. Darkness slowly overtook them and they sat around the campfire once more, this time three in number but with plenty of rations to share. "So" Sabine said with a smile to Anna, "Tanya has been reading The Flowering Vine." Anna's eyes widened and she glanced between the two girls conspiratorially "Has she gotten to the best part?" she asked with a grin.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Tue Nov 18, 2014 10:03 pm

I sat down to eat after a long day of repairing tents, the camp beginning to take shape again. I looked up when I heard my name as Sabine told Anna what I'd been reading. "The best part? I'm not sure what part that is, to be honest I'm having some difficulty understanding some of the terms. Sabine has been quite helpful with that though." I took the book out of my pack and opened to the page the blade of grass stuck out of. "I'm to the part where she meets the boy named Roger." I scanned the page a bit before closing it again, too tired to focus on the words just yet.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Mon Apr 06, 2015 4:29 pm

Anna grinned and glanced back at Sabine as Tanya replied and then closed the book again. "Oh you'll know it" Anna replied before adjusting her arm sling. Sabine helped her get her ponytail from getting caught on the sling and then sat down again. She noticed the sleepy look in Tanya's face and glanced over at Anna who also had a certain weariness written over her. They'd all been up since before daylight and the day had been a trying and tragic one. Sabine glanced around the camp, saddened at the numbers that remained. "Let's get some sleep" she suggested quietly, "It will be a long day tomorrow".

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Tue Apr 07, 2015 5:25 pm

I smiled back at Anna, knowing that was the appropriate response, the gesture coming slightly more easily than before. When Sabine suggested sleep I realized how tired I was. "I think, perhaps, you are right Sabine. I'm very tired and sore. I stretched and got up. "May the night see you both through until dawn." I nodded to the girls who ad been so welcoming to me before crawling into the tent. I'd lost my light blanket but found I was comfortable without it, the night was warm to me and I was more than comfortable in just my clothes. I quickly found myself sleeping soundly.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Tue Apr 07, 2015 6:05 pm

The night passed peacefully though Sabine found it hard to truly drift off. The sound of a horse pacing or a soft neigh caused her eyes to open and her mind to become instantly aware before pausing, realizing there was no danger and drifting off once more. She heard Anna whimper a few times in her sleep, her eyelids twitching with the inevitable nightmare. They'd been through a stampede, that wasn't an experience easily forgotten.

Still the morning came soon enough and at first light Sabine was up and slipped out of the tent. She noted her two sleeping companions quietly before slipping off to the main fire. Gratefully grabbing a cup of coffee someone offered her she glanced around the camp, noting with a smile some of the tents they'd patched up.

Glancing up at the hoofbeats of horses, she watched as Commander Roach and her selected second years returned from escorting back those too injured to continue or those who had decided to leave. Nodding to those who'd gathered at the fire for warmth, she turned to leave and see what news she could hear.

She looked up just in time to see a larger woman glower down at her. "Why thank you, I wanted some coffee this morning". Sabine looked at her confused and then looked down at her coffee and then back at the woman. "I'm sure there is some left, this is mine" she said calmly. "I want yours" the woman replied without missing a beat. "No" Sabine answered quietly before trying to push past the woman and go on her way.

"Listen you little punk" the woman said as she grabbed the collar of Sabine's shirt "You have my coffee, give it to me. Who do you think you are? You're just a puny recruit." Sabine felt the eyes around her slowly turn and mind their own business. Oh great, just what she wanted on this fine morning.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:35 pm

I woke slightly as Sabine left, the tent flap opening and letting in some light and a cool breeze. I looked down at myself and wished I'd saved my light blanket, I'd been wearing my clothes when I went to bed and they were practically soaked in sweat. I reached into my bag and pulled out the only other change of clothes I had, changing quickly and folding the sweaty clothes up to clean them in the evening after the days duties were done.

I got out of the tent quietly and looked around, hoping someone else had a fire going so I wouldn't have to start one on my own. I saw a gathering of people around a fire and spied Sabine among them as I got closer. When I was within ear shot I called Sabine's name and trotted the last few yards to her. As I did a larger girl grabbed her and I felt like something was going wrong. Such outright aggression was severely frowned upon by my people and I found myself fighting back anger and disdain. I looked at Sabine trying to catch her eye. "Is there a problem here Sabine?" I stood beside her and looked at the girl, my emotions back under control and a flat look crossing my face.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Wisp on Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:56 pm

Sabine began to stiffen, ready to pull away from the bully when she heard Tanya beside her. The woman looked at Tanya and back at Sabine. Releasing her collar and giving her a slight push back she sneered. "I'll see you later, shrimp" and with that she pushed past them and grabbed a cup of coffee off a second year like herself.

Sabine clenched her jaw and then kept walking, glancing to the side as Tanya walked with her. "Thanks" she muttered, her voice veiling her anger unsuccessfully. She threw a glare back at those around the fire and then kicked a stone out of her way before keeping a stiff pace towards the arrivals.

Slowing as she got nearer, she heard Commander Roach speaking with her leading seconds. "We'll head out at noon, we won't get far but at least we'll make some progress, get the recruits packing as soon as breakfast is over." Sabine glanced at Tanya, "ready to keep moving?" she asked with a small smile.

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Re: The Journey of a Thousand Miles (Sabine/Tanya)

Post by Fay Feirings on Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:28 pm

I watched as the larger girl picked up a cup of coffee, not understanding what had transpired but knowing that if I allowed myself, I could hate the girl. I walked beside Sabine, easily keeping up with her, simply nodding when she said thanks, not knowing what I'd done to deserve it but not wanting to argue either. When she mentioned moving I realized the Commander and second years were back. "Yes, but first I wanted to get some birch bark tea ready for when Anna woke, she had a difficult night and the march today is going to be hard on her, she needs something to help with the pain." I looked back at the communal fire and decided making one myself wouldn't be difficult. "If we start now we can eat and be packed quickly and be able to help Anna pack as well."

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