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I wrote something
There's an Endless Road to Rediscover

18th of Midyear, late, morning, Alik’r Desert tent village

It was hard not to feel somber even with the mood of those she passed by still being rather festive. Sirine smiled at a passing Redguard woman who offered her a couple of fruit without her even asking for one. She had offered to pay for it, but it seemed the villagers were still very much grateful to their group- the woman promptly told her she wouldn't be accepting any money, and that it was her honour. It felt very strange, but Sirine decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth and simply accept the offered free fruit.

Without realizing it, her feet were leading her to the edge of the village, though not so far that she was devoid of shade. Finding a tree to settle down in front of, she leaned back and looked at the expanse of sand before her, the dunes of gold melding into a clear blue sky. Where it ended it was hard to tell, the sands seeming forever. As small, sad smile tinged her lips as she set the fruits down on her lap, sighing softly.

She really hadn't meant to get emotional like that in front of Daro'Vasora, but it seemed that with her freedom the former pirate had also been freed of the mask she'd worn for months. Happiness, sadness, anger, all were emotions she could feign as easily as the next, but they seemed to be showing themselves much more easily than she would prefer. Leaning her head back against the smooth tree trunk, her eyes closed as she let her hands drift down to the ground, digging into the loose, almost sand-like dirt. It felt nice, stress relieving in fact, though she'd now have to wash her hands if she wanted to eat-

"Siri?" The voice was hesitant but her eyes flew open instantly, recognizing the speaker. Footsteps approached and came to a stop beside her; she looked up, a smile on her lips but worry in her eyes. What was he doing up and out of a tent? Why wasn't he resting?

"Bakih," she replied, her voice calm and steady despite the stream of worried thoughts flooding her mind. She easily scooted over and patted the spot beside her. "Sit down, little brother."

He didn't hesitate any longer, and soon enough he was the one with his back against the tree, with Sirine leaning against him, his arm around her shoulder. She took in a deep breath and let it out, smiling. Despite everything, her worries for the future, his future... this was nice. It eased her a little to know that regardless of all that had happened, he was alive and... relatively well.

"You should be resting," she finally pointed out, looking at him with a sideways glance, the reproach within clear.

"Maybe," Bakih replied, shrugging a shoulder before smiling down at her. "But I don't want to. Not there, in an enclosed place where I can't see the sky anymore." He let out a short breath of air. "I..." Sirine could see the uncertainty in his expression... or was it fear? "I'd rather have no roof over my head than something enclosing, encroaching."

Sirine reached over and grabbed his hand despite the dust and dirt on her own, seeing it was already clenched into a tight first, knuckles white from strain. He hadn't said much yesterday during their journey to the village, simply listening quietly to what she had to say. A lump filled the former pirate's throat. Zaveed had been right the previous night- she couldn't make Bakih's decisions for him, he was his own man. Perhaps she had needed him before, but right now she needed to be there for him.

"You're not there anymore, little brother." She carefully opened his fingers before gently folding her hand over his. "You're here now, with me." Her hold on his hand tightened a little. A stinging in her eyes, a burning in her nose, and she knew she was close to tearing up once more. Don't. There is no need to. "We're both safe and sound." She bit the inside of her lip, eyes lowering to their clasped hands. "I'm only sad that I did not find you sooner."

A long moment of silence passed, with Bakih looking out in the distance while Sirine's eyes remained lowered, unwilling to show her wet eyes. She needed to be the strong one, she needed to maintain her control, for him.

"I thought you were dead." Bakih finally spoke, his voice tight. Sirine looked up to meet his light brown eyes with her darker ones, both pairs equally wet. "When I saw you there, I thought it was... a dream. And then, a nightmare." His mouth turned downward. "An illusion, a conjuration."

"I'm alive," Sirine returned earnestly. "No dream, no illusion, I am flesh, blood and bone." She let go of his hand and reached up, stroking his auburn hair, so different from hers. It really was amazing how different they looked from one another, though perhaps not as much as two sibling Khajiit born at separate phases of the moon. "Not a day passed that I didn't think of you, little brother. After all you've done for me, sacrificed for me- I wanted to tear down every dwemer my eyes fell on for taking you away from me." A fire returned to her eyes as she thought of how she mercilessly killed the dwemer guards she came across at the prison. Their lives were worth nothing to her when it was her brother's on the line. Even now, even with him sitting next to her, she could still feel the anger, the pain and sorrow.

"Did any of the others...?" Bakih's question was left incomplete, but she knew very well what he wanted to know. Of course he wanted, no, needed to know. Her crew was his family as well. He'd had his friends, his lovers, his moments of happiness and sorrow despite his wishes for change. The pain she had felt and still felt was one he must have been feeling as well.

"No." Sirine shook her head, eyes lowering until she could barely see a glimpse of light. "I'm sorry Bakih. I had returned to the docks in attempts to find you when I knew there was no fear of being caught by the dwemer. The shambles of our ship... the bodies-" She stopped herself abruptly, unwilling to say more.


Once again she shook her head, and as she did, she felt Bakih's arms encircling her into a tight hug. Sirine smiled; eyes still stinging she returned the hug, simply listening to Bakih continue to speak. "I know he was your good friend, Siri. Last I remember of him, he was yelling out curses and flinging whatever he could find at the dwemer ship. He was not the sort who would allow himself to be taken." She felt him shake; at first she thought he was crying but it quickly became clear that he was laughing instead. Just the realization caused her heart to lighten.

"Unless the one taking him was a certain captain of a ship," she added as she relaxed once more. The back of her hand touched against the fruit that somehow hadn't rolled off her lap, and she quickly moved it away so it wouldn't get dirty. "Here, Bakih, be a dear and take these. Eat them actually, I'm not quite hungry at the moment."

Bakih was more than happy to, and Sirine couldn't help but smile as she watched him eat. In a way she still felt rather motherly over him, even though they were barely five years apart in age. Still, it wasn't hard to see the small boy she had helped around her father's ship, or the teenage lad who had joined her in her quest to up her brothers. And now, a man, seeming whole on the outside, yet she could see the darkness that lingered behind his eyes.

"Was he ever, you know...?" Bakih motioned with his hand before biting into the second fruit, ignoring the trail of juice that trickled down his chin.

"He wasn't my lover," Sirine replied. "Is that what you thought, silly boy? No, but he was my most trusted friend, and you know quite well I refuse to ruin something good for carnal pleasure."

"Hm." Bakih's response was very short as he wiped at his chin with his sleeve, not caring if it stained. "And that... other Khajiit? Zaveed, was it? Are you-"

"We haven't fucked either." Sirine smirked, enjoying the scandalized look on her brother's face from her crass words. It passed however as she continued. "We are recent friends, and without his help I wouldn't have known where to even find you. He and his brother, the Ohmes-Raht with the guns..." She smiled and shrugged lightly. "It's like being back on the ship, you could say. And now with you here, I feel almost complete again."

It was hard to tell what he was thinking as his eyes returned to the distant horizon, and after a small while she prodded him gently with her elbow. "Tell me what you're thinking, Bakih."

"I..." Once again there was hesitation in his voice. She watched as he looked away from the desert and to his outstretched legs instead. "When you spoke to me yesterday, I was still in shock, and not really all there. Hearing you say we can no longer travel together... it almost felt like you wanted to get rid of me."

"No, never!" Sirine bit down on her lip to calm herself. "Bakih, you know that couldn't be further from the truth, I just-"

"I know," he replied, raising a hand to stop her from continuing. "I know. Like I said, I was still in shock, and you were as well. I can read you as well as you can me, Siri." He chewed at the inside of his cheek before continuing. "Where do you go from here? Will you be following after them?"

Now it was Sirine's turn to hesitate, unsure what her brother wished to hear. Mulling through her thoughts, she fiddled with the coin hanging from her neck. She couldn't lie to him though, she never had and she wasn't about to start now. "I made a promise, and I intend to keep it. You know that home for me was never Gilane, never Anvil, never land. It was always the expanse of the sea where I felt the most alive, the most free. But I know it's not the same for you, Bakih." A short sigh left her. "I don't want you to live at my behest, I don't want you to feel beholden to me. You deserve to live as you wish."

Once more she grasped his hands, eyes earnest as she looked into his. "I'm free now, physically, mentally, perhaps even spiritually. You are the one person who has been with me without question for my whole life. I want the same for you, whatever you feel that is. There are many roads for you to walk, not just the one that I lead you down... but if you wish to come, it's yours to rediscover once more." She squeezed his hands before letting them go. "And you can take all the time in the world to decide."

Bakih smiled down at her, his arm tightening around her big sister's shoulder. "I know, Siri, I know." He paused and shook his head before continuing. "You've always been like this, thinking that everything is on your shoulders alone, and that you're responsible for all that happens, good or bad. It's not the case." He smile shifted into one of amusement. "Stop being so big headed, big sister."

"You dare," Sirine replied, a laugh escaping her, and then a few more. She shook her head as the laughter continued, under her breath yet continuous. "My head isn't so big anymore. Even my hair is shorter."

"It looks so strange," was her brother's reply. "I think I prefer it longer."

"I think I prefer not being roasted in the heat, if it's all the same to you." Sirine gave him a sidelong critical look before gracefully getting up to her feet in a single movement. "Come." She reached a hand out toward her brother. They had done enough moping, and the small lighthearted banter had her remember words from last night once again. They were alive and together- it was time to be proud and happy and just... live a little while they could. "Let's go pay homage to our father's people and buy ourselves something new to wear."

"Are you sure?" Bakih asked, raising an eyebrow in much the same fashion as Sirine normally did.

"Are you mistrusting your big sister's judgement?"

"Maybe a little, yes."

She laughed. "Well at least if we look like fools, it will be happy fools. Now off your ass and let's go."

Bakih sighed, shrugged, and then smiled. Grabbing her hand, he pulled himself up to a stand.

"As you wish, Captain."
<Snipped quote by Greenie>

I too, would love a Shannara RP

Lol well now I know something I need to read xD
So that happened o.o'
I'd like some space Westerns.

If you mean like Firefly, that sounds super rad ^^
Crashing Down

Greenie Dervs did somesuch

18th of Midyear, Mid-morning, Alik’r Desert…

The tent’s flaps were tied open to allow the morning light to enter, as well as to provide what little breeze could be afforded in the Alik’r desert. Having followed the example of the native tribes, Daro’Vasora and Latro had their tent facing to the North, keeping the blazing sun from shining directly into the tent, and colourful fabrics were adorning the tent to provide extra layers against the permeating rays. It was a beautiful place, and Daro’Vasora quite enjoyed the inhabitants of these lands. She truly was beginning to understand even a sliver of what Shakti appreciated about her homelands. The Alik’r Desert was so much more than dunes and endless seas of sands; it was about the closeness of the people and how they adapted over centuries to be inseparable of the fabric of their home, like the individual blood cells pumping through the body.

Daro’Vasora had managed to procure some small crates, which she covered with her mystery poncho, to use as a makeshift desk and some floor cushions to let her do her research and studying in relative peace and comfort. Latro was out and about somewhere, and across her desk was a map of Eastern Hammerfell and Western Skyrim with various thin strips of leather proposing different passages, her Dwemeri medical tome, opened to a page held by another strip, along with several ingredients in small jars that she’d gathered from a highlighted section, and the lexicon itself, the key to the entire endeavor. A teapot sat invitingly on some fire salts and it was in one of those cups she was invigorating the mind with some local brewed tea that was surprisingly sweet.

She’d found a leather worker earlier in the day with what coin she had, but was politely refused; her and her friends had brought back many loved ones of the tribe and several of the city-folk, it was to be an honour to help where the craftsman and his apprentice could. At the very least, Daro’Vasora decided, she could translate some of the medical journal for these people while doing her own personal project for Judena, who had been very withdrawn of late.

A shadow passed by the front of the tent, she looked up from her parchment and quill. Seeing a figure there, she called out, “Enter, if that’s what you’re after.”

"Good morning." Accepting the invitation as soon as it was given, Sirine entered the tent, her steps quiet yet deliberate. Having eaten some dried fruits and quenched her thirst, she was feeling quite refreshed and had decided it might do good to wander and see what else the tent village had to offer. There were distractions a plenty, and she still had to go find Bakih to have that chat Zaveed had suggested the previous night... but for now she had someone else in mind. She was still unsure how the khajiit leader group deemed her, but Sirine figured if she was going to try and understand this motley group and integrate with them, it would be good to at least share a few words with Daro'Vasora. Goodness knew the last time they had exchanged words, it had been rather heated, but she bore no ill will or resentment towards the khajiit for that. She had to do what she had to in order to protect her friends.

It was easier for Sirine to think in such a manner now… now that her brother was safe.

Her eyes roamed over the makeshift desk, taking in the maps as well as the tome, and last of all, the lexicon, where her gaze remained for a few seconds before looking to the khajiit woman. She bore a friendly expression on her face, lips upturned in a slight smile. "My apologies if I caught you in the midst of some work," she said, gesturing with her hand at the tome and map. "I can come back at a later time if you wish."

Daro'Vasora waved her hand lazily, as if half-heartedly clearing the air. “Oh, don't worry much about that. I'm an exceptional multitasker.” the Khajiit said with a shrug. “Sometimes lateral thinking while focusing on another problem yields results that otherwise elude me.” she gestured to the teapot. “Tea?” she offered. “I think it's using some dates and maybe aloe, but I'm hardly an alchemist. What can I do for you?” she asked, her expression neutral as she studied Sirine's face. She knew she was close and loyal to Zaveed and Sevari, but that hardly made her a hostile entity. Alliances were made under stress in peculiar fashion.

"Very well then," Sirine replied with a nod, making her way closer to the khajiit, though she did pause at the mention of tea. "Don't mind if I do." Not one for elongating moments and making others wait impatiently, the former pirate quickly poured herself a cup of tea, taking only the time to sniff the tantalizing aroma before settling down on the ground cross legged. Holding her tea lightly with one hand, she settled the other in her lap, returning her attention to Daro’Vasora.

"Well," she started, "I didn't actually come to ask a favour, rather to acknowledge and thank you for your help in retrieving my brother. I know your friend was there as well, and though it pained me then to admit it... it's more than clear that two khajiit and an Imperial would have had a very hard time- no, an impossible time to break into and come out alive from that place." Her eyes remained on Daro'Vasora as she continued. "My words were quite harsh and emotion driven when we first met in that desert, and I do understand why the same was from your and your lover's side-" Her eyes shifted to rest on her tea, letting out a small breath. "I am hoping perhaps we can have a fresh start."

Daro'Vasora shook her head, topping up her own cup. “You've never done wrong by me or the others. You had been told my people were the enemy and you prepared for a fight on behalf of your benefactors. It's no different than us aligning ourselves with the insurgency, except the brothers haven't tried to kill you.” Daro'Vasora smiled tersely, taking a delicate sip before setting her cup down.

“For what it's worth, I'm grateful and relieved you found your brother alive and well. I've lost my uncle to this war, and I fear for my sister's safety. She would have been preparing to make the journey to the Imperial City to visit me right around the time this invasion hit.” She let out a long sigh, meeting Sirine's eyes. “This war has cost a lot for everyone, and I won't pretend I have it worse than anyone else. I just want to make sure that I'm doing the right thing and trying to stop this war so no one else has to suffer.”

"That's quite a task you've taken on yourself," the Imperial Redguard commented before taking a sip of her own tea. The taste was intriguing, not quite what she was used to, but something she could very well get used to. She let out a satisfied breath, though her mind was already occupied with other thoughts. Her eyes once returned to the desk, or rather the objects that lay upon it.

"I'll be frank in saying I couldn't have cared less about this war, save vengeance for my brother having been stolen from me," she admitted, setting the cup down on the ground beside her. She recalled the resentment she had felt against Zaveed when he had mentioned he was a dwemer agent; her first instinct had been to simply cut him and let him bleed out in the bathtub- she was quite relieved she had resisted that temptation. Shaking her head, she continued. "It isn't that way anymore, not quite. Having my brother back alive and well can't be enough." She wasn't like Daro'Vasora, she didn't quite have the compassion to care about anyone other than those she liked. But that included more than just Bakih now. She had friends, and she refused to think of their lives in danger. The dwemer posed a very big threat.

"Am I safe in assuming you have some sort of plans or ideas on how to proceed with this... quest?"

“If you're asking if I have anything more than a theory, I'm afraid I'm going to have to disappoint you.” Daro'Vasora admitted, picking up the lexicon and turning it within her hand. Something small that contained so much unspeakable power, it was hard to properly appreciate past the ornate and precision manufacturing of the object.

“This lexicon, if I am correct and the Governor wasn't spinning a fable to me when I was her prisoner, is the key to everything. It should contain the coordinates to Exodus, the plane the Dwemer had vanished to at the Battle of the Red Mountain, and it simply needs a strong enough energy source to punch a hole and create a bridge between Mundus and wherever Exodus is located. It's like a cosmological map of sorts.” the Khajiit explained, setting it down.

“If I'm right and mythology has a grain of truth to it, I think I know where I need to go to cross that bridge and close it from the other side.” Daro'Vasora said, turning her gaze to the map, the many long and winding paths that promised immeasurable hardship. “I'll go it alone if I must, but it's worse to do nothing and let this invasion continue unabated. Everything I love and hold dear is at risk, and I cannot lose anyone else, not without trying my damnest to fix this mistake I made.”

Daro'Vasora straightened her posture after few lingering moments. “So, why do you ask? I figured you three would be gone by now, seeing your brother to safety and doing whatever you aspired to before encountering us.”

"I don't think there's any place I can go where I wouldn't be accosted by the dwemer." Sirine bit the inside of her lip, wondering how to answer this rather pointed question. She wanted to leave the desert, but she had made a promise she didn't feel the desire to break. Even if she did, she would once more have to start from nothing, and she knew very well that Bakih would once again try to aid her in her endeavours despite having no real wish to head back into the life of a sailor.

"Besides that..." she finally continued, still quite unsure of how to put her thoughts forward, "perhaps our feelings have changed? Sevari considers you all to be allies, and he has friends among you. Zaveed..." He was certainly a point of contention among the group, but it seemed as if there was some acceptance to his presence now. "He is willing to put aside the past to keep his promises and to... try to be a better man. Perhaps staying with your people will aid in that? I remain here because they are here, because there is nowhere else to go..." She shrugged her shoulders. "And perhaps I wish to see an end to the world as it's now become." Her jaw tightened momentarily and she breathed out. "It's as you said. I cannot lose anyone else, either."

Daro’Vasora cradled her fingers on the table while regarding Sirine in silence. She picked up a broken stick from another meat skewer she had for breakfast and slipped it in between her teeth. “And perhaps ours have not. Has Zaveed told you what he's done to us, to me in particular?” she asked, her stare unwavering.

Sirine wasn't particularly surprised to hear Daro'Vasora's question. She breathed out softly, staring at the warm liquid before taking another sip of it. Once she was done, she set the cup back down and spoke up. "Yes. He told me in quite clear words the night we arrived at the oasis." Her jaw was set as she recalled even earlier before their journey have begun and her temper had been tested, when he had told her they had reasons to be upset, and to forgive him for this. "He never hid what he did from me, he has been quite open and honest with me from the very beginning." She looked back at the khajiit woman, dark eyes staring squarely into green ones. "I simply believed that if he is able to look past what was done to him by yours, then perhaps the same would be reciprocated. If not... by all means ask us to leave."

That raised a brow, and the Khajiit searched her memory for what Sirine could have been possibly talking about. “What ours did…” her voice trailed off, her tone one of confusion rather than simmering hostility.

“You have me at a loss, I'm afraid. Zaveed murdered my friend in front of me after forcing me to choose between him and Raelynn, he broke my arm and then paraded me through the streets to have rotten shit and rocks thrown at me while the mob screamed for my head, and he forced Latro to surrender himself or he would shoot me in front of him. In what part of that story did I do anything to warrant that from Zaveed?” she asked, the stick snapping between her teeth as her knuckles went taunt.

"I'm not going to try to justify what Zaveed did to you," Sirine replied after a moment of silence. "He never said he was a good man, neither did Sevari for that matter, and nor am I a good woman. We all have our dark and dirty pasts.

“What happened to you, to Raelynn, it wasn't right- it was wrong. And wrong things happen during war." She looked down at her lap. "Nblec's murder shook the little sense of peace that was being forced on Gilane... and you know the rest. Your friend's murder was unfortunate. Zaveed..."

Her eyes narrowed and she looked up. "When I first came across him, he was a wrecked, damaged man, saved from the brink of death by your healer, and then simply left on docks, to rot perhaps, I know not. I saw the scars on Zaveed’s chest from the necromancer when he was bathing. I saw the being that… man summoned in the prison when I went to save my brother, I heard his cold laugh. That... evil, fear inducing laugh." Flashes of her nightmare raced through her mind. "Zaveed may have done despicable things, but he left your friend's soul intact, while his was nearly stolen from him by Gregor." Her fists tightened. "That..." She couldn't speak any longer, feeling nausea well up within her as she once again saw the soul gem she had inadvertently helped fill in the prison.

"Sevari wanted to kill him," she managed to add, her voice rather strained, as if she was parched though she was anything but. "Zaveed stopped him. That monster of a khajiit, that 'sack of shit', was it? Yes... he stopped the murder of the necromancer who nearly stole his soul, just to keep the peace and make good his promise to be a better man."

Daro'Vasora's world came crashing down.

So shocked was she by the revelation about Gregor that she didn't immediately notice her claws puncturing tiny holes in her palms as she stared wide-eyed at Sirine for her impassioned speech about Zaveed's virtues, seeing the Imperial-Redguard woman's expression shift uncomfortably, an unmistakable fear and disgust filling her features as she recounted the tale. Daro'Vasora's mind raced.

Sevari and Zaveed had both looked perturbed after the rescue, as did Fjolte, Sirine, and Bakih.

The only one who seemed buoyant was Gregor, an expression of triumph on his face when he emerged.

The silence on the ride, the uncomfortable glances.

There's a darkness inside of him… a hunger… her own words came back, an echo of when she first spoke to Raelynn about her fears of Gregor.

I just have to reach… and take it. Gregor spoke in Anvil to her, at the tavern…

“S'rendarr's mercy…” Daro'Vasora replied, her body shaking. She gripped the table's edge, blood staining the blue fabric of the poncho as she tried to steady herself, her head spinning.

“I had no idea… by S'rendarr, I had no idea.” she gasped, feeling her chest tighten. All this time, Nblec's mysterious death, the pain that came after everyone immediately after. Tears welled in her eyes, her throat tightening. At any moment, he could have turned on them, taken their souls…


She knew. She fucking knew.

When they were at the party, where she baited Daro'Vasora before twisting it into a joke about Gregor's sexual prowess. Everything was blurring together, like a puzzle she couldn't figure out.

“Why didn't I see this before?” she asked quietly, her eyes unfocused.

"And here I thought you were the one keeping him in check." Sirine did not take any pleasure in seeing Daro'Vasora in her current state. In fact, it caused her even more disgust and resentment against the necromancer. Zaveed had never hidden who he was, yet here they had such a dangerous man in their midst, who kept his secret so tightly hidden that not even the leader of their group knew. "Jaraleet had mentioned it wasn't common knowledge, but I thought you at least... clearly I was wrong."

She frowned, seeing the blood that was staining Daro’Vasora’s clothes; reaching out for the pot of tea, she poured more into the khajiit woman's cup. Perhaps something stronger would have been better, but this was good enough for now. "Breathe." She could understand how this had to feel shocking; perhaps she even felt betrayed? But she was the leader, and as a former captain, Sirine knew that Daro'Vasora would have to remain composed and keep her wits, despite what she may feel inside; there were many people counting on her. "And drink."

Idly, the Khajiit nodded, drinking from the offered tea cup, composing herself, although the shakes refused to fade. “Might come as a surprise to you, but I stumbled into a position where these people chose to follow me. I sometimes don't know what I'm doing, and all we have is this bond together… fucking shit.” Daro'Vasora spat; her mouth felt like bile.

“Who all knows this?”

"It surprises me yes, but at the same time no." Sirine didn't explain what she meant- she didn't quite think the Khajiit needed a list of virtues as to why, even though in her short time with the group she could see for herself that Daro'Vasora had the guts to make hard decisions, including the one allowing Zaveed, Sevari and herself join the group.

She drained her cup of tea and set it back down before speaking once more. "Everyone who was in that room where my brother was caged. Zaveed naturally, Sevari... my brother, though truth be told I don't know if he recalls what happened, he wasn't in the right state of mind then. Jaraleet." Her eyes narrowed and she shook her head. "Raelynn and the Nord, Fjolte... they weren't there then, but..." Once again the disgust and loathing could be seen on her face. "He called her to him, and she went." Even now it was hard for her to fathom how someone who healed and nurtured others to health could associate with such a vile being. His laugh still echoed in her mind, the way he had commanded the dead dwemer to rise- she lowered her head, the back of her hand pressed against her mouth.

Daro’Vasora steepled her fingers in front of her mouth, her mind racing. “If you were in my position, what would you do?” she asked quietly, her tone not betraying her thoughts.

"If I knew I had a necromancer in my midst? Or if someone was keeping such hideous secrets from me, while I was in charge of the welfare of more than just myself?" Sirine crossed her arms over her chest. "I was once in a position not too unlike yours, and I took care of dissension rather harshly, with a dagger to the neck." Her eyes met Daro'Vasora's. "That doesn't mean I expect you to do the same, however."

“I’ll take it under advisement.” Daro’Vasora murmured, not even quite sure if such a thing were possible even if she were so inclined. She looked down at her map, the papers… everything was at risk if this was handled indelicately. “There’s some things I need to take care of, as you could probably imagine, but if you or Sevari wish to continue traveling with us, you are more than welcome to.” She looked up, putting her hands on the table. “Give me time to think about Zaveed, to find out where others stand. Right now, we have a bigger mutual problem to address. Was there anything else you needed?” she asked.

Sirine shook her head. "No," she replied as she loosened her arm and stood up, dusting off the back of her tunic before standing straight. "My apologies for being the bearer of bad news. I will leave you to your thoughts." Giving the Khajiit woman a nod, the former pirate then turned away and quietly exited the tent.

Daro’Vasora watched Sirine leave, calmly finishing her cup of tea until she heard the footsteps fade. The Khajiit set her cup down and leaned forward, cradling the back of her head as she contemplated the gravity of the situation.

Tears began to fall onto the map like rain.
Fantasy post apocalyptic is something that tickles my imagination.
Despite creating new characters, I do have a (bad?) habit of tweaking and reusing characters from different failed roleplays. I guess for me it's the effort I put in creating and making the sheet- it feels a little sad not giving my babies ^^; another chance to thrive. My currently most active roleplay has a character I first created back in 2013 who I've consistently tweaked and changed with every version until, well, she's no longer the same, at all, save for her name and looks. ^^;

I don't find it cheap to reuse characters, especially if you never got to use them properly in the past. But I also don't find a person a 'bad' roleplayer if they simply scrap 'failed' characters and create news ones. ^_^ To each their own, as long as you're having fun!
A Good Time with a Girl

by Shafty and Greenie

17th of Midyear, Sunset

The events of the prison along with travelling had exhausted Meg. She had been adamant on not taking it easy as she had when she'd left Gilane and ridden in the wagon, but by the time the group had reached the tent village, the intoxicating enthusiasm had her wishing she hadn't pushed herself so much. Despite the excitement in the air, the music, dancing, and most of all the scent of the delicious food, the Nord woman found herself having to fight off sleep, her head slumping and jerking back to wakefulness more than once.

It was probably best to rest... but she didn't want to. The evening almost reminded her of New Life Festival, and she wanted to take in as much as she could. Rubbing her eyes as hard as she could, she wandered about until she finally caught sight of a barrel of water meant for drinking. Unable to stop herself, she grabbed the ladle that was meant to dispense water into cups and instead dumped a couple of ladle full over her head, hoping the shock would induce wakefulness. Perhaps it did, but what had her up and stepping back was a rather miffed woman who scolded her tremendously before shooing the Nord away.

"Sorry!" Meg continued to call out sheepishly until she was safely out of the woman’s sight. Letting out a huff, both embarrassed but feeling somewhat better and alert, she was pleased to see she'd found her way at an entertainment she actually found interesting enough. Grinning and completely uncaring that her hair was still wet as well as parts of her shirt, she leaned forward eagerly, eyes following the sword fighters.

She might have felt a shadow fall over her, a shirtless figure of large stature with dark skin, his scarf wrapped about his head in the Redguard style. He sipped at his water, watching the spar, seeing if he could tell either the man or the woman would be able to boot his pompous brother’s face in the dirt. Sevari looked sidelong at the seemingly attractive woman next to him, utterly dwarfed by him. Parts of her shirt clung to her toned and slender midsection and the view commanded his eyes to look. Had it really been that long for him? That he would just stare like some boy. Even so, maybe she’d be receptive to a good ti- that was Meg. That was Jaraleet’s woman, he chided himself as recognition gripped him. He then shuffled a bit away from her, hoping she didn’t notice his eyes on her. He tried at some conversation, remembering what his brother had said about integrating.

“Are… you well?” He asked lamely, still looking sidelong at her. “I haven’t talked to you since…”

Meg jerked at the sound of the voice- despite being a sneaky thing herself, she hadn't actually noticed the man standing next to her until he spoke up, much too engrossed in the show taking place before her, now that she was wide awake. Green eyes immediately swerved to look to her side... and then up, blinking in recognition when they landed on the familiar face- it wasn't as if she knew too many Ohmes-Raht. "Oh! Uhm, Sevari!" She sounded rather shocked that he of people would be here. Casting a glance about to see if perhaps Latro or Jaraleet were about, she came to the quick conclusion that no, she was the sole member of their group at this particular place. Well, not anymore, he was clearly part of their group since Gilane. At least, in her opinion. She knew there had been some fuss about his disappearance, but really... it wasn't as if people purposely allowed themselves to be capture, right?

Still... he was intimidating. "I... uhm, I'm well," she replied, sounding equally awkward, even though a part of her was actually a little pleased. If he was asking if she was well, that had to mean he didn't hate her, right? "Thankies! Uh... think we ain' talked since Jaraleet got hurt..." She scratched at the back of her head, fiddling with the small locks of hair, guilty expression as clear as day. "Uh or was it when we were plannin' on savin' Sora...?" She pursed her lips a little, finger tapping her chin as she tried to recall. "Oh, uhm, how're you? Shudda pro'ly asked ya that myself, eh?" She let out a small sheepish laugh; clearly her brain was a little fuzzy even without alcohol.

“Ah, that’s… good.” Sevari cleared his throat of nothing and shuffled in place. He took a long sip of his water since his mouth wasn’t set on doing anything else, it seemed. Finally, he spoke, “I’m glad, you know.”

He let that hang in the air and realized she wouldn’t know what the hell he was talking about, “Jaraleet. I assume you know what he is.”

"An Argonian?..." As soon as that came out of her mouth, Meg knew her answer was a very stupid one. She face palmed and then rubbed her forehead hard. "Yeah... I know whatchu talkin' 'bout. Gregor tol' me the same... back in Gilane..." Her voice trailed and she looked at the khajiit man curiously, unsure of what he meant. "Yer happy? What 'bout? Er- I mean, it's good yer happy! Jus’ wonderin' what 'bout!"

“He’s…” he said at length, unsure of how to word it in a place like this, out in the open, “He’s from the same world I come from. You don’t love when you come from there. You don’t find love, it doesn’t find you.”

He sighed, chuckled awkwardly, “Anyway, it’s good.” He nodded, “Was he your first?”

He smiled at her, before it dropped and he held a hand up, “First love.

Meg flushed to such a degree that she could practically feel the heat radiating from her face; she was extremely grateful when Sevari clarified what he meant. "Uhm well... ain' like he said anythin' or I did..." It seemed so strange talking about this with a man she had felt hated her just a few minutes ago, but she was rather flustered and the words just kept coming out. "Not the firs' though. I er- I had someone I liked 'fore, in Skyrim." Her hand fiddled with the amulet of Mara that still rested against her collarbone, and she lifted it up, eyes lowering to look at it. "He was a khajiit, bu' like, he died 'fore I could say anythin'. We used t'go tomb raidin' together."

She breathed out and let the amulet fall against herself, eyes returning to the Ohmes-Raht. "Why- why'd y'say that?" she finally asked, sounding a little off. "Are y'sayin' y'never loved?" It seemed impossible not to at least love someone, no matter what a person may have been involved in.

Sevari almost choked on the mouthful of water he had. He leaned away from Meg, spluttering until he recovered. How she had come to that conclusion was unexpected enough to have him doing that. Albeit, it was a sensitive subject. “I’m not saying that…” he said, his mouth working but nothing coming from it, “I’m saying… I’m saying even when you do find it, you’re forced to make a choice. Love or the job. As for which I’ve picked, been forced to pick…” he threw his arms out in a gesture to where they were, the circumstances they were in, “Well, I wouldn’t be here if I picked the job.”

He frowned, shaking his head, “Even when I thought I found it for good, it just couldn’t be. Her belly was swollen when I left her and I know it wouldn’t do any good to try to see her again.”

A little worried for his life, Meg had hesitantly patted the large man's back with much more force than one may have expected from her, though she did stop once she saw he was somewhat composed. The slight frown remained on her face though. "Isn't that... I mean- pickin' love, isn't tha' worth it?" she asked. She could tell she was intruding in territories that probably shouldn't have been poked about in, especially with this still rather intimidating Khajiit, but she couldn't help herself. If she learned one thing from her misadventures since the Jerell Mountains, it was to seize the moment.

"Why'd ya leave... her?" she continued to ask, though once again she was hesitant. "Didja not love her? Or... somethin' else?" She chewed on her lip for a moment before speaking again, this time rather rushed. "Sorry, don' mean t'pry but, like, if y'think Jaraleet's foun' somethin', then why'd it be diff'rent for ya?"

“Because there’s always consequences for everything.” He breathed, “I left her because there were people who wanted to kill me for making the choice I did. I left her because I chose love, it’s not always a good ending when you pick the right choice. They would’ve killed me and her and the baby.”

He sighed, “I ran away from them because my life never let me make it normal. Even Zaveed, I count the man as my brother and they took me away from him when I was twelve.” He shook his head, “Then turned me into what I am today.”

"That's..." It was hard to find the right words to speak after hearing what Sevari had to say. Meg looked down, mouth downturned and eyes stinging as she thought of the unfairness of such a situation. "How... how could someone jus' take y'away when y'were just a li'l thing..." Head shaking, she clenched her fists. It didn't matter that she didn't know who these 'they' were- it was just wrong. Her thoughts returned to Gilane, to Zahir. Children needed their families, whatever little they had. How cruel was the world where separations like this were forced upon the innocent? Why did the Divines allow such things to happen?

"T'be honest," she finally muttered, still too unsure of her feelings to look away from the ground, "I dunno much 'bout you or whatchu are... I actually thought y'hated me... but y'saved Jaraleet, an' y'helped us with gettin' Sora back. Y'didn' havta but y'did." She finally looked at him, a little pointedly, eyes narrowed though not meanly. "Just 'cause things didn' work b'fore doesn' mean they won' work now though, no?"

As much as Sevari was hopeful Meg was right, he was just as much a realist. A good life was as promised as a long life- not at all. He’d seen men killed over words or wrong looks. Even so, he shrugged, “Maybe.”

He looked into his cup and sighed at Meg’s words, shaking his head, “I never hated you. It’s just that there was more hanging in the balance than just Sora, and even then.” He said, “She was safe under my custody, when I was working under the guise of the Dwemer’s Secret Police. If they caught you, it might have cost you more than just Jaraleet. It might have cost everybody some.”

“So, no. I’m an abrasive man, a violent one, in all honesty. I’ve known little else than killing and robbing and lying for causes great and small.” He nodded his head, frowning, “But I don’t hate you.”

"If ya did, I wouldn' have blamed ya." Meg relaxed her gaze and let it return to the sword fighters instead, though it was clear that she wasn't really paying attention to the feats being performed before the crowd. "I hated me then. 't'was stupid, thinkin' I could just go an' do somethin' by myself like tha'. I cudda gotten Jaraleet killed... cudda ruined things for everyone..." She shrugged her shoulders, letting out a breath. "I wasn' thinkin', I was jus' so... pissed she'd been gone so long an' no one even noticed... or I thought no one did."

She paused a moment before looking up at the Ohmes-Raht yet again. She didn't look intimidated any longer, nor was she; he seemed less scary and more... sad and beaten. Her eyes roamed over the myriad of tattoos, both impressed by the array but also wondering how much it had to have hurt to get them all on his person. After realizing she was staring at the tattoo that depicted a sword through his neck, Meg quickly looked up, meeting the Khajiit’s eyes.

"Can I ask y'somethin'? Why- why'd you decide t'help us?"

Sevari looked away awkwardly, letting Meg stay in her reverie until her eyes began to roam. The question she asked seemed to be on everyone’s mind, so he couldn’t blame her. He rubbed at his neck- or the tattoo on it- and spoke, “I needed people to help me with a task. Latro was the first one I came to and I knew he wouldn’t be able to help me until Sora was safe.” Sevari scratched his stubble, still not able to tell these people absolutely everything. “Latro and Jaraleet are my friends. I decided to help because of that.”

He looked down at himself, glancing over each of his tattoos and smirked, “Never seen a tattoo before?” He jerked a thumb over his shoulder at some mats and tables near a tea maker's tent, “Come, let’s sit. Ever had a good tea before? I can tell you about these things over some.”

"I have seen 'em b’fore," Meg replied, face reddening a little; she guessed he had probably caught her staring. "Jus', not so many? An' like, so many differen' lookin’ ones." The occasional tattoo here and there was normal enough, but Sevari looked like a mural, though not necessarily unpleasant. Awkwardly scratching the back of her still damp head, she did have to admit that the sound of tea sounded very pleasant, and probably a much better way of staying awake than dumping water over herself.

"Well, if yer offerin'..." Her look of embarrassment quickly shifted to one of genuine curiosity, more than willing to listen to the Ohmes-Raht's explanation about his tattoos, and of course, at the possibility of making a new friend.

Sevari nodded, admittedly smiling a bit on the inside. He seldom did this before but spending time in the company of somebody who wasn’t an unrepentant killer was… he liked it. He hadn’t felt like this in quite some time. Not since Ja’Vashara. That tinged his smile with sadness some, but it was the same far away wistfulness as looking out at sunsets.

He spoke to the tea maker and returned to their short table, sitting cross-legged and placing Meg’s tea before her before he sipped from his own. “Honestly, I’ve no damned clue what they put in different teas but I know it’s good.” He chuckled, “I’m sorry if you were expecting a connoisseur. So, point one out.”

He straightened up on his sitting pillow, offering Meg a full view of almost all the tattoos, save for the three-steepled chapel. To be honest, none of his art had been gotten for good reason, but he would be honest with her. Her eyes bade him do so.

Meg couldn't help but chuckle at the Khajiit man's words about the tea, shaking her head. "Oh, ya don' havta worry 'bout that," she told him reassuringly. "I'm more a... well, an ale an' mead sorta gal. Any tea'll be good for me, I'm sure." Saying that, she took a sip, a small hum of satisfaction escaping her as she set the hot drink back down. Lips pursed and eyes narrowed, she allowed herself to peruse the tattoos yet again, eyes falling upon the most easily recognizable one to her. Nodding, she spoke up.

"Talos... does that mean you've been t'Skyrim?" It was easy to hear the hint of excitement in her voice.

“I have.” He smiled a bit, “It was mostly business, though. Not too much sight-seeing but I was all around. I got this there too. I’ve… been a servant of the Empire for some time. It only seems appropriate I find something in their culture I identify with. Another?”

Meg couldn't help but grin, one leg wiggling excitedly as per her habit when she felt happy. It wasn't such a big deal, but she always felt a sense of pride and joy when thinking of her homeland, and especially during these very hot days- it was just nice to know someone else who had been there as well.

"Uhm..." Putting her happiness to the side, her bright eyes were once more resting on the sword tattoo that seemed to pierce Sevari's neck. "Well, what 'bout that one?" she asked, motioning towards his neck with a finger.

“Ah,” his hands went to his neck, rubbing it nervously. He would’ve been apprehensive with anyone else, but Meg’s non-judging eyes held his trepidation from him, “You know what Jaraleet is, Meg, what he does. I was never a peaceful man. This is a symbol in Tamriel’s criminal world. Skooma syndicates look for Colovians with these sorts of markings when they need blood spilled.”

He breathed out a sigh, mind flashing back to things he’d done that at first glance- or hell, even the hundredth- seemed hard to justify that it was all in Imperial service. He sipped at his tea, “Which next?”

In truth, Meg was still mostly unsure of what Jaraleet was before the dwemer attacked. She had her guesses, and there was that which Gregor had insinuated the night of the party... but she didn't have the guts to actually ask about it after openly accepting the Argonian man despite his past- it just didn't seem right to.

"Y’mean... something like the Dark Brotherhood then," she murmured to herself. She looked at his chest once more, slightly nervous- she wasn't sure if she was stirring up memories that he perhaps wished to keep hidden. Still, if he was offering yet again, then perhaps it wasn't that bad? It wasn't as if she had thought him pure and unblemished- who was, really?- but she really didn’t want to end making him feel bad about himself...

Y'think too much. Shut up, mind.

"That one," she blurted out, motioning towards words in a language she wasn't able to read, but knew was Ta'agra- J'raij would often write in it. "What does that mean?"

Sevari was much more happy and forthcoming with this one. He patted his ribs where it was, “A saying in Ta’agra, it means ‘it is good to be brave.’ Something I keep with me to remind myself. I’ve been alone my whole life with seldom and fleeting friends and loves.” He said, “But through it all, when I’m shitting my trousers and shaking to my bones, or just doubting my life, I remember the words. A mantra.”

That made Meg smile. She relaxed from her earlier nervous disposition and took a sip of the tea, contemplating on the meaning. "I like that," she declared, once she set her tea back down. "An' I've heard it b'fore too... my friend J'raij used t'say it 'fore he went off t'sell somethin' he probably shouldn' have been sellin'." She giggled and shook her head, though calmed down a little after, eyes lowering as she looked down at her hands still holding her cup of tea. "Ain' easy bein' brave when yer alone... Scary even."

“And that’s when you should bravest then.” Sevari smiled, looking at Meg. She really was a kindred spirit with Ja’Vashara. Meg may have come from the other end of Tamriel that he did, but she couldn’t make him feel any more at home. “Hell is easier to walk through if you pick a direction. What else catches your eye?”

"That one there." She easily pointed out the white sailed ship tattoo'd on the Khajiit man, recalling her journey from Anvil to Gilane. "Not one for ships m'self though... was sick the whole time comin' here from Cyrodiil." She grimaced before chuckling. "Not gonna lie... I don' wanna go sailin' for a long, long time, maybe never. I like m’feet touchin’ the ground, thankie very much." Then she blinked, wondering if she might have babbled a little too much. "Eh... no offense if ya like ships… I’m sure they’re nice ‘nough for people who’re used t’them."

“By all means, put me in a saddle and I’ll get where I want to get.” He chuckled, “It’s less about the ship than what it represents. I got this after I was sprung from jail in Bravil after a job. Long story, but the ship with white sails means I’m a criminal that escapes too much to be held for too long.”

He winked at her, “One of my many talents.”

"Ooh...!" Now that made sense to the Nord, and she couldn't help but grin a little as she thought of her own escapade. "I get it! Hrmm… maybe I should go an' get one of those too then, eh?" She pulled at a lock of hair, twisting it around her finger in thought before explaining. "I lived some years in Riften... y'pro'ly know it's pretty, er... well, it's shady. I might've learned some things there that weren' precisely... good? But sure kept my ass alive when I was headin' down in the crypts lookin' for treasure." She seemed almost smug. "The guards never did catch li’l wee me. Pa did though." She shrugged, though the proud look on her face remained intact.

“So you’re not as innocent as I thought, then.” Sevari smirked, “I’d take Riften over Senchal or Torval any day, at least the parts I’m from. Trust me, you knew me a few years ago, you’d know shady.”

He chuckled, he pointed to another of his tattoos, “Renrijra. In Ta’agra it means criminal, lowlife, mercenary.” He touched his fingers to the ones on either side of his chest, “Fusozay Var Var, Fusozay Var Dar. Enjoy life, kill without qualm.”

He touched another, “In Ta’agra, this means ‘thank you, Anequina, for my ruined youth.’ Elsweyr is beautiful. But get too close and you’ll see.” He nodded, “You’ll see. As for escaping,” he twisted around to show the chapel on his back and the two eyes, “Three steeples, three years. I was supposed to be in there for twenty, but I made good friends and they decided they needed me out sooner. I got the eyes in jail, it means you go behind my back and I’ll see your treachery.”

“Y’sure been ‘round lots,” Meg remarked. She had been sipping on her tea as she watched Sevari point out a few other tattoos. “Hammerfell, obviously, Skyrim, Elsweyr, I’m bettin’ it’s safe t’say Valenwood… Cyrodiil? Morrowind?” The last two were just guesses, of course, but she continued onward anyway, letting out a huff. “If it hadn’ been for the dwemer attackin’, I’d pro’ly still be wanderin’ ‘round Skyrim. I’d never really been ‘round the Reach… ‘cause of the Forsworn-” she raised her eyebrows and glanced at the Khajiit - “I’m not usually someone who run t’wards danger…” She flushed, remembering that was exactly how she had first met the man sitting across from her. “Usually.”

“You tend to live longer that way.” Sevari chuckled, “Cyrodiil, yes. Morrowind, no. I’ve never liked swamps, couldn’t stand the ones in Valenwood, so Black Marsh is a no.”

He sipped his tea, “You’ve… never been outside Skyrim?”

“Like, 'til now? Nah.” Meg shook her head as she picked up her tea, draining it until only the dregs remained. “Jerall was m'first venture an’, well, even that was just at the border. I… well, I always wanted t'go 'round Tamriel, but not like this… this was more bein’ chased 'round.” She shrugged once again. “I s'pose we jus’ gotta take what we get?” That didn't sound quite fair to her though. “Part of me says once.. well, once whatever's s'posed t'happen happens, then I'm just gonna stay in Skyrim. The other part wants t'see more, without havin’ t'worry 'bout dwemer.”

“Huh.” Sevari nodded, “Well, you really are traveling now, then.”

He chuckled, taking the last sip of his tea. “Well, I did make a bet with that asshole I call my brother. Keep an eye out, I’m setting up a duel.”

He rose, sighing and scratching at his chest. He looked at Meg, saw the look in her eyes. It really was the same as Ja’Vashara, there was a mischief there, but not any evils. He smiled, turned away from her and chuckled a bit, letting the moment flow on until he spoke, “I’m glad we had this talk.” He said, “You… remind me of someone. I miss her a lot, to the Moons and back. You and her both, you’re good people. Keep that.”

He kept his smile, wistful as it was. One last look at Meg and a wink and he turned and took the steps away from her and back into the crowd.

"I'm glad we talked too!" Meg called out as he left, staying seated where she was for the time being though her eyes followed the two eyes and three steeples on his back until he was lost in the crowd. This was certainly not how she'd fathomed a talk with the Khajiit man would have gone. She let out a happy sigh, smiling to herself as she looked down at her empty cup of tea. Deep inside, most were good, and he had shown that as well. She hoped perhaps he'd realize that he could indeed have more than he believed he deserved.

If Jaraleet could, then why not Sevari? It was that simple to Meg.

With those thoughts, she stood up, ready to whet her lips with something a little stronger, and perhaps some food.
I'm not a huge Skype fan but then I never actually used it for socializing, rather for work purposes. I've found discord way easier to use, personally, very noob friendly, and definitely mobile friendly.
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