Status

Recent Statuses

9 mos ago
Current Just got my first nibble at my (small) group tabletop roleplay. Excited!
9 mos ago
Working hard at getting my first tabletop role play up and running.
2 likes

Bio

Ignore my small number of posts when compared to my time on RPG; I joined the site in 2016 but didn't start posting until 2019.

I am female.

I write primary characters who are female and secondary characters who are female or male.

I write with both male and female writers but, to be honest, prefer to write with the latter.

I have a great many areas of interest when it comes to role play, but I'm supposed to be writing an IC post right now, so a list will have to wait.

I am anal about proofreading: if you don't do it, we won't get along.

I write erotica in PM, so if that's your interest, we should talk about that.

I will write more here later, but I must go for now.

Most Recent Posts

ALLISON LEE (the character, not the GM)

Monday, 12 March 2024

Roll 1d10+3 for locale: 6, or average.

I wake up this beautiful Monday morning in my lover's bed. Unfortunately, I am all alone … frown and low growl at the absence of another warm body between the sheets. It was a wonderful night, though … unexpected and unusual as today is a school day.

Am I really alone though?

Roll 1d10 for other people and a safe feeling of place: 10, perfect score.

I rise, dress, and wander out into the dorm room's common area. Sarah, ONE of my current lovers is here, as are her roommate, Lois, and Lois's boyfriend, Kenneth. They are all standing at the window, which is open, looking out upon the city below their 4th floor apartment. I like Lois and Kenneth. They are very stable people. By stable, I mean not a lot of drama, they can be depended upon when needed, their secure in their lives, and that sort of shit.

I am surprised, though, to also find Carl, Yanni, and Lori here, all huddled close together on the couch before the television. Lori lives here on the women's floor, down the hall and directly across from my room where I room with Paula … Yanni, Lori's boyfriend, lives on the male floor above us … and Carl, a friend and sometimes lover to those of us with an itch, even the other guys, lives on the male floor below us.

"What the hell are all of you doing here?" I ask with a laugh. When I see what looks like a poorly filmed zombie movie on the television, I ask, "And what the hell are you watching at, what is it, six in the morning? Kinda early for brain eating zombies, isn't it?"

That's when they inform me of what's going on outside. It's no movie … it is really happening, right outside our building.

I bounce between the television and the window for the next hour or so, watching the mayhem taking place outside. Below us on the streets and in the park across the way, bodies are strewn about … and other people are EATING them. The apartment is alive with conversation, fear, disgust, concern, more fear.

"Are we in danger here … I mean, up here, in the apartment, on the 4th floor?" someone asks.

My first thought is about the people with me now. If I ever wanted someone to protect me, it would be these people. Each of them has some form of defense training or is good with weapons or is simply physically fit and ready to take on a challenge. But c'm'on … we are talking about rabid animal people … eating other people. This is not something for which I am prepared after Sandra Bullock's SING lesson from Miss Congeniality.

My second thought is of my own personal protection in a hidden drawer in my bedroom down the hallway...

Roll 1d10 for "personal protection": 8, nice.

Even though I am not supposed it in the building, I have a 5 shot .38 Special Ladysmith revolver in my purse in the bedroom. My daddy gave it to me when I moved into the city two years ago, after I got my carry permit. And I know how to use it after growing up with both side arms and long guns. Of course, I wasn't expecting the world to explode in madness during the night, so I only have the 5 rounds in the cylinder and a quite reload in the bottom of my purse.

There is a full box of shells in my own bedroom, less the 10 rounds I have. I grumble to myself, feeling unprepared. But then, last night I only came down here for a glass of wine, not a night of passion followed by a long, delightful cuddle. How could I have known I was going to end up here with the world exploding about me?

"I have to get back to my room," I tell the others, desperately wanting to be in a place where I feel the safest. Thinking about my family, I add, "I … I need to get home … to the farm."

My intention now is to get my purse to have my .38 close, return to my room, get my ammo and some things, get to my car, and get out of the city. End of turn.

"Rabies 2.0"

Open: PM Hostess first!


THIS POST IS FROM THE GAME MISTRESS
(I will also be posting for the character "Allison")

Monday, 12 March 2024

For a week or so, the Press … radio, television, and internet … has been reporting on viral outbreaks in cities across the globe.

The city of Springville … population 1 million, including the 'burbs … reported its first cases just two days ago. By last night, there were more than 1,000 cases, and the Mayor was taking steps to limit the spread.

Rumored connections between these distant outbreaks began to make some think this might not be just a normal virus.

Then, last night, mayhem erupted in Springville. (OOC … Imagine that first horror scene from "World War Z", and … if you want more … see the first post in the OOC.)

By sunup, the world was a changed place.

. . . . . . . . . .

FOR ALLISON

Roll 1d10+3 to determine your locale upon waking this beautiful Monday morning. A roll of 1 would be someplace unfamiliar and unsecure while a roll of 10 would be the safest place you can imagine yourself being at a time like this. I will let you decide what's what on this. I am giving you the +3 modifier because, well, we can you dying in the first post, can we?

If your locale allows for others to be present, roll 1d10 for companions. Imagine a roll of 5 being you alone with no immediate threats, a roll of 1 being "scary as fuck", and a roll of 10 being "Whew, I'm safe as can be!" Do not spend an unnecessary amount of time describing the people with you as they may not be with you long.

Finally, if your locale and situation allow for it in your opinion, Roll 1d10 for "personal protection". Are you carrying a firearm or knife or other weapon? Do you have access to a weapon? Again, low roll bad, high roll good, but make adjustments for the two rolls above. Again, I am giving you a great deal of latitude here. End of turn. Compose and post your IC reply NOW.

. . . . . . . . . .

OOC Comments for readers and potential players

Obviously, "Allison" is me. Allison is not a major character in the game. She will post here for three reasons. First, to allow me to practice using the Dice Campaign. Second, to add color to the story in an IC format, rather than in the OOC. And third, to OCCASIONALLY interact with other characters as their players need.

I recently bought a cheapo, semi-intelligent smart phone that does not easily do punctuation, so you will see less fancy formatting from here out, unless I am on my relatively genius computer at home. I do like yellow, though. I use it to set things apart, such as dice rolls.

So, let us get this party started...
USING YOUR DICE CAMPAIGN IN RABIES 2.0

NOTE: I recently purchased a cheap assed phone on which punctuation is a bitch. It takes 4 keystrokes just to include 1 bracket in a reply. Therefore, my posts are going to be very basic in formatting. The exception will be the use of yellow at times. I like yellow.

. . . . . . . . . .

HOW TO CREATE A DICE CAMPAIGN

Go to the Roleplayerguild Home Page.

Select the Dice link, located on the right side of the page.

Select New Campaign, located on the right side of the page.

Name your Campaign. Go simple but informative … like "ALLISON'S RABIES 2.0 DICE CAMPAIGN".

A description is unnecessary, but, whatever.

. . . . . . . . . .

KEEP THIS IMPORTANT DETAIL IN MIND -- If I tell you a 1d10 roll of 1 will have a certain effect on a situation, then that means that ONLY a roll of 1 will have that effect. If I tell you that a 1d10 roll of 4 will have a certain result, then that means that a roll of 1, 2, 3, or 4 will have that result. Any roll less than the "target" roll … in this case 4 … is the same as that roll of 4.

Just as important -- If you perform a dice roll and the result is less than Zero, then it is simply considered Zero. For example, you make roll of 1d10-7 and the result is -2, consider the result a Zero. For an example, click here.

. . . . . . . . . .

USING YOUR DICE CAMPAIGN IN OUR GAME

So … let's imagine the following scenario …

Your character, Barb, runs out of food. You post that Beth is going into the hallway to check for unlocked apartments to search for food and other resources.

I post the following …

PART 1

Beth opens the door to peek out.

Roll 1d10-6 for how many Rabids hear, detect, and charge you.

If the roll is Zero, no Rabids heard Beth. Skip to Part 2 NOW.

Roll 1d10 again. If the 2nd roll is less than the 1st roll, skip to the next paragraph NOW. Beth safely closes her door before the Rabids reach her. But she is trapped inside. Too bad, so sad. Roll 3d10 for the number of hours the Rabids will remain outside, trying but failing to get inside before rushing away to some other sound or movement. Beth can either hang out or attempt another action. End of turn. Post your reply NOW.

Subtract the 2nd roll from the 1st. This is how many Rabids got inside your apartment. What are you going to do? Fight them? Flee to another room? Make your decision. End of turn. Post your reply NOW.

. . . . . . . . . .

PART 2

Beth goes into the hallway. There are 10 apartments and 2 utility rooms on this floor. You may check as many doors on this floor as you wish, using the following dice roll guide...

Roll 1d10 for the 1st door. The "Note" for your roll should include whether it is an apartment or utility room.

If the roll is 3 or less, skip to Part 3 NOW.

The door is unlocked. You go inside...

Roll 1d10-7 for the number of Rabids in the room.

If Zero, skip to the next paragraph NOW. The Rabids rush you. Do you fight? Do you slam the door shut and flee? Decide but do not take the scene further. End of turn. Post your reply NOW.

You enter the apartment. Post your experience up to entering the room but do not describe the room. More rolls are needed. End of turn. Post your reply NOW.

At this point, I will perform the following rolls for you and determine what you found to add to your inventory:

Roll 1d10 for food.
Roll 1d10 for water.
Roll 1d10 for weapons.
Roll 1d10 for batteries.
Roll 1d10 for electronics.
Roll 1d10 for other.

If you think there should be another category of resources for which I should roll, include it at the end of your post. I will consider it. More resource categories will be added over time. These are just what I came up with at this moment in time with my caffeine deprived mind.

After I send you these results, you can write in your next reply what you choose to take or leave behind. Additionally, if I am vague about what you find, you can further describe it. BTW, "brownie points" are given for players who add description to their posts … but please do not go overboard and write 5,000 words.

. . . . . . . . . .

PART 3

DANGER! Each time you attempt to open a door and it does not open, there is a risk that Rabids somewhere on the floor might hear you...

Each time you fail to open a door, roll 1d10. A roll of 1 for the 1st door means Rabids on the floor heard you and they are coming. A roll of 2 for the 2nd door, a roll of 3 for the 3rd door, etc. Obviously, the longer you are out there, the more risk you are taking.

After each failed door attempt that does NOT alert Rabids, you have to make a choice to either give up and return to your apartment or try another door, knowing that each time is riskier. If you choose to attempt another door, go back up to Part 2. If you choose to not, continue reading.

If you DO alert Rabids, roll 1d10. If the result is equal to or greater than the number of attempts you have made opening doors, then you reach your apartment safely. If the result is less than the number of attempts, you don't make it and must fight. This is meant to reflect the idea that the more doors you attempt to open, the farther you are from your own door.

If at any point you are forced to fight Rabids, do NOT post the melee round. Your turn is over. Post your experience to that point.

CHARACTER NAME: Allison Lee

IMAGE: See my avatar. That's her! Cute, huh?

GENDER: Female

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION
  • Age: 22
  • Race: White (of Irish-Scottish descent)
  • Height: 5'4"
  • Weight: 115 lbs
  • Measurements: 33C-25-35
  • Hair color: Auburn
  • Eye color: Deep green
  • Other: tattoos and piercings in places that would make her mother blush and her father furious.


PERSONALITY:
  • Confident but not overly bold.
  • She understands the difference between what she can and cannot do.
  • She doesn't take unnecessary risks.
  • She isn't overly materialistic, but she likes stuff, too.
  • She is sensual and sexual in nature.
  • She doesn't label herself sexually.
  • Most of her lovers have been male, but some have been female, too.
  • Very loyal to those who deserve it.
  • Although she was raised with guns and is comfortable with them, she's never used one against or even pointed one at a human being.


BACKGROUND:
  • 2002: Born in Springville.
  • 2002-2022: Lived on the family farm.
  • More about her family below.
  • 2020: Began classes at SCC (Springville Community College).
  • 2022: Moved to a downtown student dormitory to begin classes at Springville University ("Spring U").
  • 2024 (March, specifically): During her last year of school, Rabies 2.0 struck.
  • And … that's where here IC posts begin.


MORE ABOUT HER FAMILY:
  • Allison lived her whole live with both parents, her paternal grandparents, and her three sisters, who were 1, 3, and 5 years younger than she was.
  • The family had a working farm on which they grew most of their own food, both animals and crops.
  • Allison understands farming/ranching/gardening.
  • The family had a year round "Vegie-Fruit Stand" (that sold far more than just vegetables and fruit). It made them about a third of their income.
  • They also had booths at Saturday, Holiday, and Seasonal Markets. Again, it made them about a third of their money.
  • Finally, the adults in her family all had jobs that earned them additional money, the last third or so of their combined income.
  • Allison's father, John, was also a mechanic and handyman.
  • Her mother, Kimberly, was a part time nurse and midwife.
  • Her grandmother, Deloris, was a substitute teacher and tutor.
  • And her grandfather -- in a wheel chair since being shot in Viet Nam in 1970 -- wrote and illustrated books of all sorts.
  • Allison doesn't at this time know the circumstances of her family members.


ANYTHING ELSE WE SHOULD KNOW: More coming.
  • Allison doesn't consider herself a slut or whore.
  • But she's not above "putting out" for objects or services she needs.
  • She grew up around guns, so she had no problem using one.
  • However, she's never pointed one at another person, let alone shot one at someone.
  • Whether or not she can shoot at a Rabid -- or at a regular ol' person -- to protect herself is questionable.

Creating a Character


Seeking permission to join:
  • You MUST send me a PM to discuss the role play before creating a CS (character sheet).
  • Characters posted without invitation will be ignored.
  • Respect! Don't make me sick Aretha on you!


Conformity in Character Sheet Creation
  • PLEASE follow the steps for CS creation precisely.
  • My sanity depends upon all CSs being similar in appearance.
  • See my own character "Allison Lee" if you wish to see that for which I am striving.
  • You do NOT have to be that detailed or informative. She's only an example. But honestly, isn't she super easy to read?


Create your CS
  • Use "Quote" in the lower right to open a new reply.
  • Complete the sheet. NOTE: Answers should only go on lines that end with a colon.
  • WARNING: Navigating back and forth between your CS and pic links can cause you to lose every thing on which you have spent so much time and effort. SAVE OFTEN … PARTICULARLY BEFORE CLICKING ANY LINKS!
  • PM your CS to me. Do not post it here.
  • After I have reviewed it and deleted all the now-unnecessary instructions, I will PM it back to you.
  • You do NOT need to delete all of the instructions before sending it to me; I will.
  • After I've sent it back to you, post it here in the Character Sheets thread.


AFTER I have approved your CS
and returned it to you,
you may post your introduction in the IC.


*************************


CHARACTER NAME:
(Please make it easy to remember and spell. No punctuation in names; I often respond to posts on my not-smart phone, and punctuation if the bane of its existence.)

IMAGE:
(Optional. Address link only; do not post a full image here. You can use a celebrity if you want, but I prefer you don't. Be original; find an image of some unknown person on the internet.)

GENDER:

(This is NOT a sexual roleplay. However, if you want your character to be involved in sexual situations in PM, she needs to be an appropriate age. See the RPG guidelines.)

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION
(Again, this is optional. Use the portions applicable to your character's gender; leave the others blank and I will delete them. If you find something offensive, racist, sexist, or any other -ive or -ist, skip it.)
  • Age:
  • Race, color, or whatever you want to say about your appearance:
  • Height:
  • Weight:
  • Build (males):
  • Measurements (females):
  • Hair color:
  • Eye color:
  • Other:


PERSONALITY:
(Tell us about your Character's personality: outgoing, shy, confident, always afraid, slutty, virgin, twitchy, distrusting, psychopath … oh, I could go on with this all day. Tell me what you think is important for me (and others) to know. You can use bullet points if you wish, or I will edit them into your answer without altering your text if you prefer.)

BACKGROUND:
(Tell us about your Character's background: birth place, family, education, occupation, criminal past, whatever. Same thought as above regarding bullet points.)

ANYTHING ELSE WE SHOULD KNOW:
(Like it says: anything else. Again, bullet point comment.)

"Rabies 2.0"

Open: PM Hostess first!


Inspiration for the role play
  • The inspiration for this role play is the motion picture "World War Z".
  • The "infected" in our story -- called "Rabids" (and further explained elsewhere) -- will move, react, and attack in a similar behavior to the "infected" from the movie.
  • However, the similarities may end there; I haven't decided every detail yet.
  • Specifically, the Rabids don't avoid unhealthy people, as did the "infected" in the movie.
  • Additionally, other alternative Rabid "behaviors" may be discovered as the game progresses.


Regarding gender
  • I am female, therefore, I use "her", "hers", and "she" in OOC explanations.
  • That doesn't mean this game is only for females, though.
  • Both genders are invited to play.
  • And each gender is permitted -- even encouraged -- to play characters of both genders.


Introduction
  • The date: March 2024.
  • The location: Springville, population 1 million.
  • Over the past few days, mayhem has erupted across the globe.
  • Last night, that mayhem reached Springville.
  • The cause of this mayhem is now understood to be a virus.
  • This virus causes people to act like wild animals: to act "rabid".
  • They attack other people, killing and eating them.
  • Because of the behavior of the infected, the virus has come to be called "Rabies 2.0"
  • People attacked but not killed may become Rabids.


Your initial mission: survive!
  • Each player begins with 1 character.
  • You may create additional characters later.
  • Your character's initial mission is simply to survive.
  • She will need to establish a Safe Zone if she doesn't already have one.
  • She will need to accumulate resources, called her Inventory.
  • Resources run out, obviously; you will need to find more.
  • Leaving your Safe Zone to find more resourses, however, can be dangerous, even deadly.


An optional mission: thrive!
  • Surviving might not be enough for most characters; thriving might be more desirable.
  • Your character could go beyond surviving and create a Safe Zone that is a flourishing home or even a community filled with other survivors.
  • These survivors can be secondary characters played by you, primary characters played by other writers, or primary or secondary characters written by me.
  • More characters means a need for accumulating more resources.
  • Or it could mean creating more resources: power could be generated; crops could be grown; products could be fabricated; and children -- a resource to many -- could be conceived, born, raised, and nurtured.
  • Again, leaving your Safe Zone to accomplish all of this can be dangerous, even deadly.
  • Additionally, having such a Safe Zone or Community could draw unwanted attention from other survivors who will want what you have … and might just try to take it for themselves.
  • But in the end, it will all be worth it … won't it?


Secondary Characters: Allies and Sacrificial Lambs
  • There are some advantages to having others surrounding you.
  • More eyes and ears means less surprises.
  • Also, if danger should arise, your character is less likely to be the first one harmed.
  • "Sacrificial lambs" will protect you from both Rabids and Invaders (survivors who want your stuff).
  • These Lambs need resources of their own. Fortunately, they provide labor. Whether or not they are an asset or a liability will depend on many things yet to be explained.


Joining the game: on time or late, doesn't matter
  • I will open the game to characters ASAP.
  • The first couple of IC (role play) days will likely take many OOC (real world) days to complete.
  • Because of this, "late" players won't hardly be late at all.
  • A player joining during the game 2 or 3 OOC weeks after it's started might only be 2 or 3 IC days late.
  • I can get your "late" character caught up with the IC time line in a flash.
  • All characters initially begin in a neighborhood (or building) set apart from the other characters.
  • Therefore, an "early" character and a "late" character can initially be in separate time lines without causing one another grief.
  • Trust me, this'll work.
  • Ultimately, all characters will be roughly in the same time line; different players' characters will be able to interact with characters from other players, if you want. (Interaction is NOT a must, only an option.)


If this still sounds interesting to you...
  • Let's get you started.
  • PM me so we can get to know one another. (Please title you PM "Joining Rabies 2.0" to make my management of my PM box easier.)
  • After we have talked, we'll get you started.

Potentially interested! What mechanics are you thinking of using?

I'm not going to use an existing game system but will instead make this up entirely off the top of my head.

I'm thinking that the underlying story can be similar to any one of my favorite movies or television shows: "I am Legend", "The Walking Dead", "The Book of Eli", "World War Z" (the movie; not familiar with the other formats), "The Postman", "Waterworld", etc.

PCs will start out with little and will need to accumulate resources while creating a secure living situation. They can remain in one place and venture farther out into their community; or they can be on the road, trying to get from Point A to Point B.

The trials and tribulations they face will depend upon the basic storyline with which we go.
I've been experimenting with the Dice Campaigns, to educate myself to be an online DM for a fantasy role play.

HOWEVER, I think I would rather do a modern day apocalypse role play, maybe something viral in nature or zombie-ish or "I Am Legend" Darkseeker-like.

I want there to be multiple Player Characters, because this is a dangerous world and PCs will die. (NO, I won't intentionally try to kill your PCs.

However, I want them all of these PCs to be written/played by the same player. This way, the two of us do not have to wait hours, days, sometimes weeks for the other players' to have all posted their turns.

If you are interested, here are more details:

  • I am female, so I will use "she", "her", and "hers" in the following explanation. However, the invitation is open to either a male or female writer, who hopefully will write both male and female PCs.
  • There can be descriptive detail and story telling, as with any role play, but the only things that MUST be in a reply are the PC's turns, meaning what she decides, says, does, etc. You know, typical Tabletop stuff.
  • The Player can post 1 reply covering all PCs or multiple replies covering individual PCs. What ever works at that moment is fine.
  • The Player will create a Dice Campaign to roll her own rolls and insert them into her reply when needed.
  • I will attempt to keep the story moving quickly by allowing PCs to make a succession of rolls to complete such things as a "melee" round or investigation of a room or trek through a dangerous area without having to wait for me to update the situation.
  • I am looking for a player who will post at least 10 times a week. That's not much, when you consider that a turn can include just actions and rolls -- no detailed description -- and can probably be completed in less than 5 minutes. Most of you spend more time than that each week waiting for your coffee to brew. In fact, you can play the game while you are waiting for your coffee to brew!


I will add more here today, but right now I have something to do elsewhere.
As she watched her hostess lovingly pet one of the dogs, Allison reflected on the differences between Letha's canines -- the Human World dogs -- and the Canines of Fantaja, the Worlent and the Cayan.

Allison had seen dogs in the Human World on her visits there, of course; how could one not see them as they were every where. Humans led them on leashes and took them to public locations to play with other dogs; they reserved rear seats for them in their Beastless Carriages and -- mostly Female Humans, but not always so -- even carried them in their purses. Humans did the strangest things with their dogs; they dressed them in Human clothing and trimmed their fur into unnatural shapes and more.

And the kinds of dogs! There were so many shapes and sizes and colors, whereas in Fantaja, there were only the Worlent and Cayan.

Of course, those two were plenty enough for Allison. Each of the species was a killer; Allison had lost loved one to both types of Fantaja Canine and had nearly lost her own life to each as well. While the Worlent and Cayan were very different from one another, they had one thing in common: a taste for the flesh of River Elves.

The Worlent was similar to the Human World's Wolf, only much bigger and very different in its hunting nature. With its head high to peer around itself, a Worlent was as tall as Allison, a height the Humans would call sixty six inches or one hundred and sixty eight centimenters (not that Allison knew what that meant, of course). It was a solitary hunter, unlike the Human World's much smaller wolf; and it hunted more like the Human World's big cats -- the Jaguar and Tiger -- by stalking its prey quietly through the woods and striking without notice.

The Cayan was so very much different than its bigger Canine cousin. Allison had once seen a Human World coyote in something called a photograph and thought it looked very much like the Cayans of Fantaja, only the Cayans were nearer the size of the Human World's wolves. And it wasn't only their size that was different; the Cayans hunted in in packs as large as 40 individuals, encircling their prey and closing in, toying with them mercilessly. Allison had heard stories of how Beings surrounded by Cayans were in such panic and distress that they almost begged the Cayan to just kill and eat them already, to end the horror.

"Please come and eat.

Allison took the offered plate and studied the food upon it as Letha told the story of Synoro. The young woman's description caused a flood of memories in Allison about the land, not Allison's first hand memories but instead the stories told to her by others back home.

"Now it's just me, the animals, and the random temporary person in need. I keep the house up the best I can, but all I can do is maintain the interior."

"You help others … have helped others, in the past?" Allison asked. She listened to Letha's response, then said with a slight bow of her head, "I thank you … for myself, and for the others as well. You are a person of honor."

Allison ate a few bites, her gaze shifting from Letha to the dogs to the interior of the room and back. She felt a bit uncomfortable contemplating her next inquiry, but she went with it anyway. "The dogs are from the Human World … you get visitors from that dimension and from my own, Fantaja. But … but you, Letha. Are you … well, are you of the Human World? What I mean is, are you Human? You seem so-- And I mean not offend you with my words, but … you appear so young … yet … you think and speak as if an older, wiser person. Do I ask too much...?"

“Please, come on in,” Letha said with a smile, turning for the house.

Allison wasn't hesitant … but she did hesitate; she didn't know this young woman, and there was something so mysterious about her. She appeared young, barely more than a girl, yet Letha carried herself with the poise of a confident older woman who knew the world well.

As they headed up the path, Allison caught movement to each side; unusual Canines appeared from various locations and joined them as they walked forward. Initially, Allison went on guard, even reaching for her bow, though, she never removed it from its resting place over her quiver. But it became obvious that the Canines were domesticated and friendly to Letha. Allison hoped they would be friendly to her and, -- soon enough -- realized they would be.

The house had appeared ancient and dilapidated from afar, and up close it only proved itself to be even more so. It was so odd to Allison that a structure of such enormous size would be in such disrepair: it was far bigger than even the Elven Queen's castle in Fantaja, as bigger wasn't always seen as better in the Elven culture, nor was bigger seen as a sign of power or importance; yet at the same time, the Queen's castle was always immaculate in appearance, gleaming and without a speck of dust because of its dozens of dedicated workers, inside and outside.

That was what was missing from Letha's home, obviously: help. As they entered the back of the house, Allison kept on guard for dangers, most particularly others who might cause her harm or distress. It wasn't as if she actually expected to be assailed; no, Allison was just the cautious type, and -- of course -- she been being chased for days by a woman bent on turning her into a pillar of eternal ice.

But … there was no one else in the massive home. No one; not a servant or family member or neighbor or … well, no one.

She studied Letha for a moment as they young woman directed her to a doorway, thinking How can you be safe here all alone, little girl? Then, Allison's mind moved to the more important question, How can you be happy all alone here. The Elven people were a very social people. With the exception of when she was hunting or adventuring -- as she had when she used a Portal to access the Human World and set in motion this latest mayhem -- Allison was never alone for long.

Her village had a population of almost 200 men, women, and children, and yet they all lived together in fewer than 12 houses. Allison shared her home with her parents and some of her parents' siblings and most of the children of these 8 adults, as well as with another 6 people not of her bloodline who -- for a variety of reasons -- had found themselves alone and needed the comfort of their Elven Kind. Allison shared her bed, too, of course; since the time she ceases sleeping between the warm bodies of her mother and father, the River Elf had shared her massive straw and fur covered bed with a variety of female relatives and friends. It was just the way it was; it was their Culture, which made Allison a bit uncomfortable with the emptiness of Letha's home.

“You can follow Midas into the other room," Letha told the Elf, "and warm up by the fireplace if you want. I’ll make us something to eat.”

Allison looked to the dog that led the way as if understanding her hostess's invitation. Had he? Had he sensed what Letha was offering? Or had he actually understood the words. In Fantaja, the Canines kept by the Elves literally understood the words of their Masters, but that wasn't because they had the needed intelligence to do so; it was a result of Magic casted upon them, to make them a better servant. Back home, the average dog was just that, an average dog.

But what about Midas, Allison wondered. She had the ability to detect the presence of Magic in both living and non-living things. And yet, Allison detected nothing in the beast leading her into a large room. In fact, Allison suddenly realized, she detected no Magic at all here … None whatsoever! But … was that because there was none? Or -- as during her visit to the Human World -- was something blocking her ability to detect the Magic of others.

That, of course, was the reason Allison had very nearly been killed in that other Dimension; Allison had noticed immediately her inability to detect magic when she attempted to locate the Portal to return to Fantaja and couldn't. It was the reason she'd been unable to follow Kyla's demands to get out of the Magic Killer's worlds. Allison hadn't been looking for a fight; she hadn't been intentionally defying Kyla. She simply hadn't been able to depart that world in a timely manner … and for it, Allison had been chased into this world that -- like the Human World -- was so different from her own.

Allison had been studying every aspect of the enormous room when her hostess returned and said to the dogs, “Come and get it.” She watched with curiosity at the young woman set down bowls of food for the Beasts. She asked with a sincere tone of surprise, "You feed your Canines?"

Yet another difference between the worlds: in Fantaja, the Canines -- even the Magical ones -- hunted their own food, most often Ryshmere, a smallish creature that were considered a Pest because they liked to build their tunnel homes in the ground beneath Elvish homes, thereby making them unstable and sometimes even leading them to collapse.

Sometimes Allison felt sympathy for the Ryshmere; they were semi-intelligent, with a rudimentary language and the ability to use tools and even make tiny spear-like pikes for protecting themselves against other ground dwelling, non-intelligent animals that would either displace them in their tunnels or even eat them. Allison had seen such a relation as the Elves-Ryshmere during her visits to the Human World, where Humans hunted or otherwise caused the death of other semi-intelligent creatures of their dimension.

Such behavior seemed to find a place in all cultures, it seemed.

"You called your home something," Allison said as she watched Letha care for the beasts who excitedly headed for the food-filled bowls. "I … I may have heard that name before … I am uncertain. Stories from the Ancients … my ancestors."

Allison very nearly launched into an explanation of from where her People had come but didn't; she still did not know this woman or this place enough to give out that kind of history. And, honestly, Allison didn't know all of the history herself anyway. Perhaps Letha would tell her more about her own world first...?
© 2007-2017
BBCode Cheatsheet