Falistia 34th, 0800@Lucky
While Georgia spoke, the dwarf leant over and helped himself to a hunk of bread from the rations sack. It was stale, and rock hard, the effort of chewing it hurting his jaw. He splashed a dash of water from his canteen upon the crust, hoping to soften the loaf and make it more palatable. A faint hope. There’s little palatable about this situation. Stranded in a land not your own, a sea between you and your brothers, a pariah amongst your own clan, strange amongst strangers and hunted by a creature beyond your comprehension.
He was almost starting to regret killing Stevros.
The risk had been calculated, and he still had no reason to believe that the death of his brother-in-law hadn’t delivered the outcome he had hoped for. To be sure he hadn’t expected to be shipped off to Haev when he volunteered his services to the Sacred Flame, but he had made allowances for such unexpected variables. Things back in the Ghenna Mountain ranges should still be progressing according to his plans with or without his presence. He had more pressing issues closer to hand that required his attention."I don't think we're alone, Sir Stravi. It could be spirits. It may be magic. One thing, I think, is certain: our presence is known."
Georgia’s eyes where on him, her gaze bright and intense. He was struck suddenly by just how young she was and wondered for a moment why he had requested her presence. At the time he had reasoned that the, while inexperienced and untampered, he imagined she had a wealth of potential, and wanted the chance to observe her in close quarters, perhaps try and mould her into the capable woman that he suspected she could become. After all, if he was to serve alongside these Flame recruits then he would rather they be as effective as possible, rather than scared and untried children. Right at that moment however he was uncomfortably suspicious that there might have been more than a vein of sentimentality in his decision to take Georgia along. If only Gentle could see you know. How he’d laugh at his dread captain, playing at being the knight-in-shining armour for the frightened maiden.
Stravi dismissed the thought as ridiculous. Georgia may or may not be a delicate maiden – the choice of who and what she was, was for her to decide – but he was most certainly not a noble knight. He was a mercenary and a kin slayer, a warrior and a pragmatist, and he had neither the time nor inclination to enact upon such noble ideals. Georgia was a soldier in the Order of the Sacred Flame now and would have to learn to harden herself to the realities of that situation, just as everyone else on their boat to Weirn had. He would protect her as he would a comrade, not as a father would a child. Anything less than that would be irresponsible.
“Then we are of a similar mind. Something watches us and doesn’t want to be seen in return. In my experience that can only mean that it means us some kind of ill.” His eyes flickered along the tree line, but he could see nothing untoward. He grunted, annoyed. He had never been anything more than a capable woodsman, but he suspected that even if had the skill of Whisperwood, the Blackshield’s veteran scout and ranger, he wouldn’t have been able to track whatever it was that was probing at their camp through the night.
“As soon as our companions are up, we will break camp and move on. We need more information before we try to tackle whatever it is out there, and I doubt we’ll find it sitting here.” Spirits and forest sprites weren’t his are of expertise, but his curiosity was piqued now, and he’d like to know just what it was that had visited them through the night.