[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

This is a city located on the coast of western Idalos and stands as a pillar of light against the dark cliff faces surrounding it. Ne'haer is considered a port city for ships as well as the last stop for most seafarers adventuring to locate the Iulure Isles. For this, it is nicknamed "Death's Door". In contrast to its nickname, this city focuses mostly on religious values and rituals for the protection of the immortals watching over their city. Ne'haer is also a city booming with trade and nobility, as well as jobs and plenty of opportunities to advance in skills and crafts.

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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Incubus » Fri Sep 09, 2016 2:36 pm

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27th of Saun, Arc 716

The festival of Lysoria had begun. The city's native lotus had been grown and prepared for this occasion, floating down the salt lake. Within each lotus was a lantern of salt that held a candle within, lights spreading across the rim of the lake as the citizens gathered around the northern edge. There were stands everywhere - foods, treats, trinkets to gift others and crowns of beautiful flowers. The town engaged in festivity, freely, yet somehow much of the citizenry seemed quite contained. Debauchery and revelry were at a minimum - there was no alcohol to be found, nor the flirtations of young men and women. Kids were kept close to their parents and many wandered about as almost observers rather than partakers.

Theon and Kemma of House Amielle watched over the festivities with a stern view. They were the overseers - ensuring that others did not break any laws or engage in public obscenities. They were dressed in exceptionally fine attire, seated upon a mound that had been fashioned as the place to lay upon their thrones and belongings. From below their view, the people of Lysoria engaged in what they could, though they seemed all but comfortable. There had been arrests in stark numbers as of late, all over minor offenses yet with crueler punishments than one could ever expect. The House of Amielle, of late, had been arbitrary.

But not everyone worried too much of the leaders of Lysoria - or knew of their recent behaviors. To break the tensity, a young group of performers known as the Hyrants - a joke after their city of origin - removed the draperies covering their wagons and revealed to the festival a large red bear in a cage: the Ne'haer Bear, a beast renowned for its festive nature and its pleasant demeanor, so often an instrument for circus freaks and lovers of carnivale. They uncaged the bear and rolled out a large ball of thick material, the creature joyfully chasing after it and leaping onto the surface as it rolled. It kept itself from being dragged under, crawling along the edges and balancing its chest against the skyward portion of the ball.

The citizens began to clap, impressed. The bear eventually fell on its back and laid the ball against its chest, biting on the hard material. The circus-performers and children laughed as it did so, and holding their candles of hardened salt, the Hyrants backflipped and danced around the bear. "We are the Hyrants of Hyran," they announced themselves, "and we are pleased to be welcomed by the Grace of Lysoria!"

To their introduction, however, Kemma Amielle waved her hand, urging the guard to escort them away.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Kura Wolfsdotter » Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:13 am

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Kura rolled her shoulders as she rode into the city of Lysoria, eager for a warm, soft bed and a roof over her head. Then she looked around and noticed the apparent festivities that were underway and a wide grin spread across her face. She had always enjoyed fairs and she knew she was liable to miss at least one of the Imperial fairs, so this was certainly a pleasant surprise. Nudging the flanks of her rented horse, Kura rode straight for the inn and set up stabling for the horse without a moments hesitation. After stashing her pack in her room, the mortalborn hurriedly left the inn and ran out into the fair, looking to see what was on offer here.

After a while, she noticed that the locals seemed....restricted. Like they weren't celebrating at all, despite the festive air. After a moment Kura paused to wonder about that, then leaned against a wall and brought one hand up to scratch at her cheek. "Speck. Phelan. Something is off here. See what you can find." she said under her breath, her mouth hidden by her hand. She received an assent from her familiars, then went back to wandering through the city, enjoying the fair.

After a while she came upon a group of performers and the single fuzziest bear she had ever seen. The bear was, at least to her, the star of the show and she stepped closer to it. She stopped just outside the performers, but she still didn't pay that much attention to them. She was still watching the bear, which was now chewing happily on the hard ball it was playing with. The bear seemed abnormally cheerful and it was bright red and really fuzzy. Kura unconsciously took another step closer.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Dionysia » Fri Sep 16, 2016 4:39 am

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It had been a long, traitorous, and strange journey and yet, Dia was still able to arrive in Lysoria on the expected day. She was hoping the caravan would arrive sooner than expect since there were things she needed to discuss with the ruling family of Lysoria on behald of her Lord, however, Dionysia never found time in doing so.

They'd arrived mid morning to the sound of people in the streets carrying strange flowers, lanterns, glowing decorations, and food from which the smells that lingered where simply wonderful and somehow confusing to the senses. Lysoria's Salt Festival was underway and those from all around gathered to partake in the city's yearly tradition.

When Dionysia had arrived, she was tasked to great the Lord and Lady of the city and present to them the gifts sent to them from Ironridge. Bowing humbly, Dionysia stood outside the steps of Lysoria's strong hold, the largest building within the city, and presented the gifts to the Lord and Lady who stood dutifully beyond the iron doors. They looked out onto the Ambassador as she rose from her bow and turned to remove the cloth from the back of the caravan.

“Lord Theon and Lady Kemma of the house of Amielle, Ruling family of Lysoria, Caretakers of the Salt Lake, Guardians of the Red Caves, and allies to the citizens of Ironridge and Lord Vurris Lokhert who governs them, I present, on behalf of my Lord, gifts to honor the treaty between cities and the Salt Festival. As a representative to my Lord, I humbly ask that you accept these gifts and allow Ironridge to celebrate with Lysoria once more in this joyous occasion.”

Dionysia stood strong, presenting the caravan full of fine gifts to the Lord and Lady. Kemma looked pleased with greed as her eyes inspected the fine site of wealth within the vehicle. Lord Theon appeared as if he couldn't care less, turning to gaze upon his citizens as they gathered. He nodded and with a wave of his hand, the crowd clapped. Amielle crested guards approached the caravan while Dia stood back to allow them better access as the Lord and Lady entered back into their fortified residence.

The guards had seized their caravan and moved it off somewhere to unload the gifts. During this time, Dia and the guards where shown to their quarters, a stone building settling off near the side of the strong hold. Vuharu lingered at her side along the way, promptly intimidating all who stood within a ten foot radius of the woman and her companion. Once they were discarded into a room by a nervous looking servant, Dia threw her large satchel of things on the bed and turned to analyze the room.

The walls were cold as was the stone floor which was odd, considering it was a little more than the middle of Saun. There was a dresser, a basin, a mirror, nightstand, and a small table with a chair. Only one window gazed into the room and all of it appeared dusty.

“Ugh... I miss home already.” Dia let out, watching as Vuharu jumped on the twin bed, promptly occupying all of it. Pursing her lips as she dug into her bag, Dia shook her head, “You know we're not sharing the bed tonight. You're sleeping on the floor.”


It was a while later when Dia was collected from her quarters. She was sporting the fashion of her people as was Vuharu. Clothed in a soft, brilliantly colored dress, the Ironridge Ambassador wore shimmering gold metal around her waist, shoulders, neck, and arms. Her hair was done up where a rather extravagant headpiece accentuated the outfit. In Ironridge, this was meant to establish status but in Lysoria, Dionysia felt out of place. Nevertheless, her confidence was built solid on a foundation of being more annoyed at having to come to such a thing than actually worrying about being there. She didn't care how she looked nor how other saw her. The woman just wanted to get this done, get out of these aching shoes, and back home to her comfortable bed.

Vuharu was decorated in a kind of metal that shimmered in the light. He also wore a kind of head piece, but one that did not drape in front of his face like Dia's did. The pair looked magnificent, intimidating, and proud, just as they should be.

The same servant guided them out of the building and into a crowded square that sat just beyond the strong hold. “This way, Ambassador.” The girl said meekly, looking down.

It was strange, ever since Dia entered Lysoria, the citizens had been less than merry. Lysoria enjoyed their festivals as any other proud city would, but this? This was odd. Too odd. “What's going on here?” Dia asked softly, leaning toward the girl. “Everyone seems so... Lifeless.”

“Nothing's wrong, Ambassador.” Her body turned and she gestured, “My Lord and Lady await you.”

“Thank you...” Dia gave before watching the servant scuttle away. What was going on here?

The crowd watched silently as performers entered the wide circle strung off for them. Their act should have elicited a humorous response from the people around, but instead, they seemed mildly interested. They only ones to truly enjoy the show were the children. Dia couldn't help but ball her fists as the bear was ushered back into its cage.

Memories wanted to spill back into her mind but she forced them out, turning and approaching the mound where the Lord and Lady sat. Bowing deeply, Dia presented herself to them in a respectful manner, lifting her head up after a few trills. “Lord Theon, Lady Kemm, on behalf of my people, I'd like to thank you for having me here. Such a fine festival you and your citizens have put together. I hope the gifts offered from Lord Lokhert honor you respectfully.”

'Mother would be proud...' Dia thought absently.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Malcolm » Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:35 am

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The long way round. That had been the plan, take the long way round and avoid temptation. Mortalborns, Pre had requested he find mortalborns and her nephew had not denied the request, but there had been one reunion he had dreaded since he had first step foot on western soil.
"You had children," Godric whispered and tucked his arms over the top of his blanket from where he lay on the floor.
"Two," Malcolm admitted.
"With her?"
"Indeed," the man smiled half-heartedly.
"What happened to them, why did the two of you, you know?" The man made a broken, whistling sound and prised his hands apart as if to suggest the word 'split' without saying it.
Malcolm thought of the first boy who had been born with no life in his lungs, his flesh purple and blue, with chalky features, eyes closed, and limbs limp. Then of the golden haired boy, his memories fled to, a boy full of life, of curiosity for the world, the silent boy whose curiosity had ended his life, face down in the lake. Malcolm didn't answer.
"Cos you know, she fine," Godric elbowed him. "Doesn't look a day past twenty to me."
"The years have been kind," Malcolm agreed. He was restless and wanted to rise, but didn't think it right before their host was on her feet.
They had stayed the night in a small cottage beside the lake, on the living room floor with a blanket and a pillow each. The wind had whistled at their backs beneath the floorboards, the front door rattled against the frame, and the mist on the lake had flooded the surrounding property to peek through the windows like a silent ghost. It felt strange to be back here and Malcolm hadn't slept a wink.

It had been almost midday before they were up, fed, and dressed. Malcolm had opted to wear his black chainmail, silver greaves, leggings, and a pair of leather boots. A heavy belt donned his midsection, pinching in the mail and cream coloured tunic he wore beneath that which skirted out over his leggings and leather pants, stopping just above the knee. From his belt hung a masterworks blade, a handful of throwing daggers, his coin purse, and small axe.
"You're dressed for a battle," Avari smiled as she cleared away the dishes from the table, the observation general, as both men seemed well prepared this morning.
"Got to look good for the ladies," Godric scratched the stubble on his jaw, "never know who I might run into at the festival."
Avari offered him a polite smile before averting her gaze again. "Yes, you never know..."
Godric looked at Malcolm before turning his gaze on the woman once more. "Will you be joining us, my lady?"
"The festival is basically in my backyard," she grinned, cleaning the scraps from the plates into the cat's bowl. "I'd be daft not to follow ya."
Godric smiled at Malcolm, hopeful, but the knight didn't seem to share in his enthusiasm.

At the festival, the three weaved through the crowds, careful not to get in anyone's way. Avari had worn a simple dress, loose, and straight down without any curves. It was a light shade of brown, or shit as Godric had so eloquently put it, which had been at least the third time he had put his foot in his mouth today.
It wasn't long before Malcolm spotted a familiar face and was glad to see that Kura had made it to Lysoria in one piece. There never seemed to be any sneaking up on the woman, however, who he could have sworn had eyes in the back of her head. "Kura, I've not introduced you to Avari."
"Oh sweet honey of Moseke, who is that?" Godric interrupted, eyes fixed on the woman decorated with gold who stood near an unfamiliar pair of people whose position suggested they were rather important. "I bet her skin is softer than rose petals, and her hair smells like..." He sucked a great gasp of air in through his nose and coughed. "Oh that'd be just my luck... I think I stepped in bear crap." The pair beside him laughed and shook with mirth.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Incubus » Tue Sep 20, 2016 5:05 pm

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As Kura approached the large fuzzy bear, it noticed her immediately. The red, fuzzy creature paused for a moment and simply stared quietly as if it were gauging the situation. With its hind legs scratching its side for but a moment, the bear took steps towards the Mortalborn as she approached in return. Then, as it grew closer and closer, it plopped on its back and rolled over to allow the woman reach of its stomach. The bear made a roar that didn't sound so ferocious at all, but rather welcome and forthcoming.

The performance troupe - the Hyrants - beckoned for their bear to come to their side as the guards approached to escort them away. The animal's ears perked and it began to rise to obey them. However, a collection of Lysorian guards approached the bear and two stepped in-between the path of Kura, Malcolm, Godric and the animal rising to its feet. "Step back from the bear, foreigners," one of the guards warned. "This creature's presence is highly illegal," he stated, looking to Kura. "A bear is no animal fit for a familial event, and a young lady is not one we would entrust with approaching it unguarded. Return to the festivities." Another guard approached Malcolm and Godric and crossed his arms, avoiding the gaze of Avari who approached alongside them.

"Are you two sowing unrest?" he asked the two men, his expression uncouth as he sized them both up. "I've seen your fellow harassing the young ladies of the city. We've already gotten at least a dozen complaints." Whether that was true or not was yet to be seen, however the statement was made, and the guard rode on the claim, looking to Avari. "That's correct, isn't it? Would you like to file a claim for harassment on these two men? I could have them escorted away immediately if that be your wish."

- - -


Meanwhile, Kemma and Theon were approached by the Ambassador of Ironridge, guided by one of their trusted servants. The Lord and Lady of Lysoria nodded graciously at the woman's bowing, though Theon did so evidently as a formality as his expression screamed disinterest while the young woman spoke. Such a fine festival, she called it, the woman's words parting from her lips. Kemma scoffed. "Not nearly fine enough," the Lady replied. "Look at those buffoons parading down below. The Hyrants of Hyran. A fitting name considering they're tyrannizing the children who don't wish to fear murder by a bloody bear." Her husband nodded slowly, as did the servant who brought Dionysia forward.

"The gifts were indeed well, however," Lord Theon spoke. "Lord Lokhert is a fine individual. I shall have to gift him in return. Perhaps with that bear," he said with a smirk as his wife replied with a fake, abrupt chuckle. Lady Kemma focused her vision solely on the blond-haired Ambassador and leaned forward in her seat.

"Just who approaches us, dear girl? I realize your affiliation with Ironridge, but you as a person?" The Lady glanced at the woman's animal companion. "Fierce, clearly, a tigress with her mate," she muttered as an under-handed insult. "Do you have much love for your city of Ironridge? I imagine youths such as yourself would not fully understand concepts such as loyalty and patriotism. Did they perhaps send you as a shiny bauble for my husband to gawk over?" She laughed, and invoked a glare from Lord Theon.

Suddenly, all around her seemed tense, and the Lady of the city responded with a shrug of her shoulders. "Dear, I mean no offense," she said jovially.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Kura Wolfsdotter » Wed Sep 21, 2016 6:55 pm

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Kura was about to approach the bear when its caretakers whistled for it to heel. She supposed they didn't want to risk her injuring it, which she could understand. Maybe if she showed them Phelan, they'd let her pet it. Then she got interrupted by a guard who proceeded to confirm everything she suspected about low-ranking foreign military members. However, before she could reply, she finally got a report from her familiars. "The guards stink of fear, but the populace...doesn't. I think they know something is wrong, but don't know enough to be afraid." Phelan was first, his tone curious. "And nobody is afraid of that bear. Except maybe the guards, I suppose." the wolf had drifted back to her side as he spoke, though he was still in spirit form.

"Could be the atrocious attitude of their city leaders. You were better than this when you were still in school. They just insinuated that an ambassador mates with tigers and is here solely for the male-leader to look at." Speck was more calm and collected than Phelan was, but then the owl was as old as Kura herself was, and had been with Kura through some pretty strange days. Kura nodded, then turned and faced the guard as he insulted Malcolm and Godric.

"And they let you wear a uniform? They expect you, who can't even control yourself, to keep order?" she said, her tone shifting to a superior, condescending note. "Perhaps you should stop projecting your own emotions onto others, cadet. It might help you be an actual soldier when you grow up. These people, they aren't afraid. You and your companions, however, reek of fear." she said, taking her pipe out of her coat to fill it with tobacco as she spoke.

At least one of the guards, the only she could see out of the corner of her eye, had turned to face her. "Of course, with such leadership as thinks it wise to insinuate that a foreign ambassador sleeps with tigers and is no more than a pretty face, perhaps you have reason to be afraid. But not of a bear, no. I think you fear your leaders foolishness and your own incompetence." she said as she used her tinder to light her pipe.

Looking up, she saw the closest guard had turned white with rage and had stepped close to her. "You dare to insult us, foreign wench? I'll teach you respect!" he said, raising his hand to strike her, only to be tackled from the side by two hundred pounds of snarling muscle, bone, and fur as Phelan, who had shifted into physical form, made clear his displeasure at this action. The offended guard landed flat on his back and stared in shock at Phelan's fangs, which were no more than an inch away from his nose.

"And I see your leaders lack of manners is reflected in their troops." she said coldly, taking a drag from her pipe after she spoke. Pausing for a moment before exhaling the smoke, Kura looked back down at the man. "Phelan, let him up." Phelan growled at the man again, then stood and seated himself next to Kura, the very image of canine calm. "Now then, since you feel the need to assault a foreign diplomat." she began before getting cut off.

"Diplomat!?" the guard on the ground shouted incredulously.

"Yes, of course. I am a diplomat from the Eternal Empire, sent to learn the state of the world beyond our continent. Who else would run with a wolf such as this." she said impatiently, gesturing at Phelan, who was indeed bigger than a normal wolf. It helped that he had puffed himself up to make himself look more regal than wolves normally did. "As I was saying, since you feel the need to assault a foreign diplomat, you will take me to your leadership, where a full report of your actions will be made." she said, her tone cold and demanding.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Dionysia » Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:52 am

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The muscle in her jaw ticked as her teeth clenched together, partly to ebb her ire and partly to cut her tongue off to prevent getting thrown in the city dungeons and later executed for the insults this woman vomited from her pretty, royal mouth. A mouth with teeth Dionysia wouldn't mind breaking.

Her smile faltered only slightly as the Lady of Lysoria continued on, her jokes aided by her laughter alone while the Lord sat by and watched with amused eyes. Politics. What a pain in the ass. The wheels turned in her head, giving reasons as to why she shouldn't retort to an insult, why should shouldn't lower herself, why she valued her position and her life. But the dignity and pride cemented in her from being Ironridge born defied all reason. Her eyes looked up, wickedly amused and unsettling where cold humor could be found in their deep, dark depths.

"Why, my Lady. How rude of me to assume such information was not provided to you beforehand. Ironridge is so tightly aligned with Lysoria, I mistakenly thought knowledge of my name and presence would have reached your ears before my arrival, but alas, our people are organized quite differently. My name is Dionysia Valharidos, Ambassador of Ironridge and soldier within the Iron Blades army." She dropped her head in a gentle bow yet again, but her icy words continued on.

"It is quite fine, Lady Kemma, I am honored you find such humor in my presence. We Ironridge women carry ourselves with such dignity and restraint that it's not often we pleasure our egos with such fine attention. Our honor is unfortunately our flaw, but I think it's why our city thrives so strongly. As they say, honor is simply the morality of superior men."

Dia reached her hand out to pet the top of Vuharu's head as he sat in all his glory beside her. "My Lord has a keen eye for those he employs to represent his homeland, one that is not so easily swayed by the enchantments and temptations of skin or a pretty face. He sees with wisdom— something that is reflected in the alliances he forms and the Lords that honor him with them." Removing her hand, she bowed once more and smiled. "Thank you Lord Theo for this lovely festival and Lady Kemma for such a pleasant conversation. This has been very beneficial to both Ironridge and myself. If you will excuse me, I will take my leave."

The woman stood taller, squaring her shoulders as she turned to leave the royal pair with a hidden scowl on her lips, attempting to move off to the side with Vuharu in toe. Though, it seems a small commotion was forming in that direction.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Malcolm » Sat Sep 24, 2016 7:21 pm

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Godric and Malcolm were both tall men, the kind of men one didn't walk up to in the street unless they could be completely sure that the pair were of a good or neutral alignment. When Malcolm was wearing the small badges that decorated him a part of the Iron Hand, he was approachable, but today, he wore no such thing. Godric had been accused of being insufferable again, and had Malcolm not spent the night in the same room the man, he might of believed it. However, they had only just arrived at the festival and had no previous dealings in Lysoria, other than the quiet drink Godric had gone for the evening before.
Accused of being a foreigner, Malcolm looked a little taken back. He very highly doubted that these two guards knew everyone in the township of Lysoria, and glanced at Avari when she was asked if the pair were bothering her. He wore an amused little smirk and folded his arms to match the guard's stance while Ava answered.
She closed her hands around Malcolm's bicep and smiled politely. "No Ser, my husband is not bothering me, nor is my dear cousin, Rick. I believe you have been ill-informed." It was the bear, not the men that made her a little uneasy, and the sudden appearance of a wolf made her jump back with fright.
Malcolm scanned the crowd, something about this all felt very peculiar. He looked for any faces that might be looking their way, with hope or perhaps malice. Who would report them and why? It seemed Godric had also sensed that something was up, as Malcolm felt a familiar warmth move over him like a second skin. Godric had activated his shielding ability, something no arrow, spell, or force of nature could penetrate. The shield was extended to Avari and Kura, and the woman's wolf once he realised she was in control of it, invisible to the naked eye, but clear as day to all those who fell within its protection.
Avari's abilities were a lot more complex, as she could call on anything she had experiences via the hands of a mortalborn. She delved into the mind of the guard in an attempt to read his thoughts, and stood ready to throw his words back in his face, or act.
"We'll be on our way," Malcolm called off his companions and weaved through the crowd to duck out of sight.

 ! Malcolm wrote:
I take my leave from this thread [oct] as replies are taking too long and I need to know what I'm doing with my character in Vhalar. Thanks for writings guys.
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[Lysoria] Salt and Smoke

Postby Kura Wolfsdotter » Tue Oct 18, 2016 12:40 am

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Kura turned on her heel and began to lead the guards towards where Speck said the leaders of the city were. As she turned, she saw Malcolm and his companions slip away in the commotion she caused, an effect she was glad to have had. However, as she started towards the main building she was distracted by the sight of someone Speck informed her was the ambassador of a place called Ironridge. And she was striking, this woman, both in appearance and demeanor, aided by the great cat that seemed as loyal to her as Phelan was to Kura herself. The Mortalborn smiled and angled her trajectory.

Stopping in front of the woman, Kura bowed low and smiled. "Greetings. My name is Kura Wolfsdotter, ambassador of the Eternal Empire. I understand you to be the ambassador of the city of Ironridge, and from what I've seen, your manners far exceed that of the locals. If could have a Break or two of your time, I would be delighted to treat with you." she said, her tone that odd sort of formal cheer that many wore. She knew she didn't look like an ambassador in her casual wear, but the wolf at her side and the guards at her back lent credence to her claim. As she spoke, one of them stepped forward.

"Lady Ambassador, you said you wished to see the leaders of the city, this woman is a foreigner and of no use to you." the man said, her tone respectful to Kura but insulting to the Ironridge woman, probably because Kura had managed to put on enough of a show so far to convince them she might have them killed if they insulted her.

Instead, however, she simply glared coldly at the man. "I see you still lack sufficient manners for your position. Return to your masters, dog. Inform them that I will call upon them after festivities have ended for the day. I would advise you then seek out a drill instructor and have him beat the lessons you should have learned into you. Because if he doesn't, I will." she snarled, her words lent extra weight by Phelan's deep snarl at the end.

The guards left with offended dignity at that. Or at least, Kura assumed that's what they were trying to do. To her they looked like school children being punished for nicking the pots and pans from the scullery to play soldier. Turning back to the other woman, she smiled again. "Apologies for that unpleasantness. Even if I can't have your time, though, I would at the least hate to part without your name, my lady." she said, letting her tone drop to a more casual level.
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Kura Wolfsdotter
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One Arc Later... (1) Vhalar 716 (1)

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