On the Edge

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On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:38 pm

Nauriel wasn't even sure what time it was. She had lost all sense of time in the last two days. She had thrown herself into work with such an intensity that servants had to bring her food in her study in order for her to eat. She would barely touch the food before going back to work again. She hadn't gone back to their room or spoken to her husband since their last conversation. Every so often her eyes would start to close, but she would see images of that dead woman's face before her eyes and it would jolt her awake. She had discovered the woman's name and where her family lived and she had gone there personally to give her condolences to the family. She also gave them some money to pay for the funeral expenses and anything else they might need. She wished she could do more, but there was nothing else to be done.

She attended court, visited with Eldarion, Calista and the twins, and also spent time with Ariana, her parents, and Elfwine but then threw herself back into her work. The only person she hadn't seen for two days was her husband. Her feelings were mixed and she continued to shield them from him through the bond. She was angry, upset, overwhelmed, exhausted and confused. She wanted to just go back to him, and yet her anger at his blaming her for what had happened ran deep. She was only one woman and yet what was expected of her from her husband, parents, children, and country was often too much for her to take. Leaving had upset Elessar, but if she hadn't gone and then her father had died she would never have been able to forgive herself. It had always been a no win situation and it left her feeling like a horrible woman.

Looking up from her work she could see it was very dark outside. It was like 2 or 3 am and the palace was quiet. Nauriel looked back down at the parchment she had been writing on, but she couldn't force her hand to start writing again. Suddenly, she dropped her quill and buried her head in her hands and began to cry.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Sun Feb 25, 2018 10:17 am

It had been a busy week since the bases were born and their return into the city. Calista and Eldarion had their hands full with their growing family. In the evenings Eldarion spent alot  of his time in the war room going over maps and battleplans with The King, Conleth and Gondor’s Generals. Ariana had Meliara to tend to in the mornings and sat next to her mother and grandmother at court all afternoon. Though Serethiel mostly just listened while she did her embroidery and knitting. Ariana spent part of her evenings with Captain Einor who had officially announced their betrothal and that had created quite the buzz in the last few days. The entire city was very excited over the news in hopes that he could keep the wayward Princess in line.

Elessar didn’t see much of Nauriel. He had been meaning to talk to her about the bond and why he has not been able to feel her through it. However each night he laid down she was simply not there and neither was she when he when he woke. He had grown decidedly worried about her but she had made herself unavailable to him it seemed. Had he said or done something wrong? He wished he could ask her but the servants didn’t even know for sure where she was most of the time.

Kressara was mostly seen either in the gardens or running through the streets or on the towers and walls sweating like she had a bucket overturned over her head. Several young men had expressed their will to Elessar about wanting to step out with Kressara but Elessar had to tell them that she was not ready to accept their attentions, much to his chagrin. Kressara was of marrying age and he wanted her to be settled but Nauriel had expressly told him that she would not be accepting any invitations. He didn’t ask about that, he knew she knew more than he did but he’d poll the girl sometime about that if he could find the time.

Tonight was another matter. Elessar had seen no sign of Nauriel at dinner...again and no one knew she had gone. He knew they’d all been busy but he was beginning to worry about her and the bond felt like an appendage that had gone numb. He didn’t like not feeling her there. It was like a warm blanket that hung over his shoulders when he was cold. It brought him comfort to feel he there but she had been shutting him off and he would know why tonight!

He had a ‘feeling’ she might be in her private study again. He had found her there a few nights past singing Elfwine to sleep. He had been so proud of him, defending  Calista like he  had at only 8 years of age no less. The women had taken his dagger away but Elessar demanded that  it  be returned to him and it was. He never was seen without it and he never touched it either save for putting it on and feeling to make certain it was still there.

Just like before Elessar dressed in his blue robe and dark green night clothes and slippers padded up to  her study door and saw the light on inside. He was about to knock when he leaned in and heard her weeping. He  frowned not understanding why but then steadied his face and opened the door.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Sun Feb 25, 2018 6:40 pm

Nauriel and Elessar's marriage was not perfect by any means. No marriage was. However, in all of the many years that they had been together he had never placed this kind of blame upon her shoulders before. Was she failing him...her family...her country? While she had always championed her husband as Gondor's King, she had secretly had doubts about her own ability to be Queen, but she had always done more than her best. She had to work harder than her husband because she was a woman and had tried her best to be there when her family needed her. But to have her husband blame her for the assassination attempts on her family because she had left when her mother had needed her the most was too more for her to bare. It was not something she could just let go or forget. This was a very serious accusation and one that weighed heavy on Nauriel's mind and in her heart and was the reason behind her tears.

Suddenly, she heard the door to her study open and she looked up and found herself looking at her husband. She became angry that he had not knocked and had instead just opened the door. This study was hers and hers alone and she suddenly felt her private space and moment being invaded. She said nothing and looked away from him...waiting for him to speak first.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 7:40 am

Elessar frowned at her initial expression but shrugged it off. ‘What is going on with her?’ he wondered. “I apologize for intruding, I wasn’t certain you were in here nor awake,” he said, obviously unsure if he should have disturbed her. If she were sleeping he could have carried her to bed but when she looked away he knew something was wrong. He moved up to her then slowly took a knee beside her desk and chair. He put his right hand on the chair back and his left on her thigh.

“Are you alright Nauriel? You’ve not slept and barely eaten. If something is troubling you...have I...please, speak to me my darling,” he asked. Not pleadingly exactly but close to it, his voice heavily laden with concern for her.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 8:04 am

Nauriel was visibly surprised by her husband's question. Did he really not know why she was upset? Could he have forgotten his words so easily? The mere idea of that made her even angrier and she stood suddenly and stepped away from him. She paced for a moment before looking at him.

"You really don't know why I'm upset? Have you forgotten what you said to me only three days ago? Fine then. I'll jog your memory. You placed the entirety of what happened upon my shoulders. You blamed me for the assassination attempts on our children and family as if I had been the one to plan out the entire thing myself. I am not perfect by any means Elessar, but I did NOT deserve that. And you have merely forgotten what you said as if you thought that your words would have no impact upon me at all."

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 8:22 am

Elessar was truly taken aback and she had forced him to sit back when she got up. Her brush past him to stand oozed controlled anger. He remained as he was a moment while he went back to that day. He had ridden for days and days to get to Gehanna due to what had been happening through the bond. He was worried, afraid and confused. That and he had left his men to find out what was happening with his wife, the Queen. As he thought about that moment though his words did come back to him. He winced internally at them realizing now how she took them.

“So, you waited all this time to call me down?” he asked and stood up. He was much taller than she and he felt he’d need every bit of it of any advantage to leave this room with his skin in tact. He had erred, greviously but he felt she hadn’t handled things properly either. “Since when have i ever been unapproachable Nauriel. If you felt my words were unfair, why didn’t you speak up and tell me so so I could recant them. Now I’m just angry,” he said honestly though it was clear he didn’t want to be angry. He wanted to apologize.

“You cut me off from you, stay out of our bed and let this fester inside of you...where has my wife the Queen of Gondor gone?” he said and put his hands on his hips. “Obviously I did not truly mean what I said Nauriel. But I don’t think I expected you to act like a child and pout about it behind my back,” he said and moved to block her from leaving. “That is beneath you my love and I am sorry for speaking to you out of fatigue and anger,” he said, his eyes cold blue fire now as he looked at her.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 8:46 am

Nauriel was practically trembling with anger. She was exhausted and hungry and her emotions were a raging torrent within her. "I never expected you to ever say anything like that to me. To be honest I was shocked and hurt." Slowly her body began to relax as her anger left her and was replaced by tears that began to stream down her cheeks. "I have always tried to do what everyone needs me to do and be everywhere everyone needs me to be, but it's impossible. I truly believed my father was dying and after not being there nearly my entire life I couldn't just remain here. If he had died and I hadn't been there I never would have been able to forgive myself. My own brother resents me for not spending more time in Gehenna. It was a no win situation, but I had to go. I'm sorry that I let you down...again."

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:05 am

“No...you ‘are’ what everyone needs you to be. Your family, our people, no one doubts that Nauriel. I spoke in haste and I am truly sorry for my words. It was not right of me to lay blame upon you,” he said trying to apologize but he felt so...angry as if her anger spurned his own.

“You need to stop beating yourself up over Ariana!” He said in a harsh tone. He had thought she had forgiven herself for that. He had felt a great deal of shame through the bond too and that surprised him more than everything else. Her accomplishments could not easily be counted. What did she have to be ashamed for? Elessar hated to see her cry but he was not ready to console her just yet. He needed to understand what was happening to her.

“Beren? The most he’s had to worry about are raiders and sheep. YOU have an entire country on your shoulders! You are mother to all Nauriel, and your people love you,” He said. “I will not say that the timing of your leaving was...ideal. But it was wrong of me to put blame upon you for these attacks,” he said and then visibly tried to soften his demeanor. She had riled him up and he wanted to know her mind.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:23 am

The tears continued to stream down Nauriel's cheeks. She had been holding in quite a bit for a long time and now that a crack had been formed in her tough outer shell it was all spilling through, like water in a dam through a small hole. She had not realized that she was still blaming herself for Ariana leaving, but when Elessar called her out on it she knew that she had been. She felt as if she had failed her daughter and because she had failed her she had been made to suffer. But it wasn't just her daughter she felt she had failed...it was her parents as well.

"I feel this intense guilt for having spent most of my life apart from my parents. I feel that I have missed so much and so I always felt that I needed to go whenever they needed me. I am only one person and I have always tried to balance being a wife, mother, daughter, and Queen, but sometimes I feel as if I end up just failing at it all. I have never told you this, but even though I always championed you to be King of Gondor, I never thought I would be the kind of Queen that I knew you needed. I have always had this doubt of my place here."

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:54 am

Elessar hadn’t realized he had closed the distance between them and took her into his arms. He let her tears fall as he lifted up her chin to look into his eyes. “Why guilt? You’ve brought much honor to your family. They had their responsibilities and you have yours. You can not believe Arwen would have made a better queen Nauriel. Not after all of this time?” he asked. “I would not choose anyone but you to watch my back my love. We are not just King and Queen, husband and Wife, Father and Mother. We are friends Nauriel. You are my best friend. It has been so since the day you left your village to come with me,” he said. “You helped me become the man I am today...your influence on Elfwine...only 8 and already a hero. Guilt and doubt do not belong inside your heart. I have never doubted you Nauriel. Please forgive my disrespect, my words were spoken in haste,” he said.

“The shame I felt in you...it has no place within you. And i am far from perfect. I know I’ve made so many mistakes but my responsibilities do not allow me to reflect upon them long. I take them into myself and move forward. That said I believe we have restored order here in the city and have taken steps to make it safe for our family. If you need time...if you need to step away, I will support you. Your happiness is so very important to me Nauriel. You are important to me,” he said honestly as his eyes seemed to search hers.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 10:38 am

Nauriel didn't realize she was trembling until Elessar's arms enveloped her. She always felt safe and secure within them. All of her anger melted away as she breathed in his comforting scent. His words meant more to her than she could have ever said. Somehow just knowing that he had never once doubted her made her love him even more. It had been difficult for her to reveal her own self doubts to him, but it had been something she had needed to do. Now, she felt as if a huge weight had been lifted from her shoulders and she began to feel more like herself again. She and Elessar had been through more together than any other couple in Middle Earth. They had persevered through it all and she could not imagine herself with anyone else in the world. She truly believed that they had been fated to be together and that she had found not only her soul mate, but her best friend. She loved him so deeply that it often hurt.

Slowly, she looked up into his eyes. Her own were filled with love and desire. "I'm not going anywhere," she said before kissing him deeply.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 11:14 am

No longer wanting to be here he bent and picked up Nauriel and cradled her in his arms. The bond flowed back into him and with it the sensations of love and desire that he had been without for too long. Far too long. His intent to make love to her was as crisp and clear like a new spring rain as he carried her out of her study. Before he took very many steps however her stomach growled loudly. He sighed as he walked slowly toward their room. “I will have a feast brought to you my love...and I...will feast upon you,” he whispered into her ear and smiled brightly intending to do just that.

The next morning she woke and started when she noticed sunlight peeping in through their large window. Not only had she slept in, ‘HE’ had let her sleep in! She looked around and refuse from her late night feasting and drinking was all over the room; On the dresser, nightstand and even a tray on the floor. Her head and stomach ached, she had nearly gorged herself she had been so hungry and drank alot too. There were ‘other’ aches as well but those only made her smile. Elessar had been...passionate last night and it was a wonder the bed had not caught fire. Even now the warmth of him filled the bond, his love and desire were like 1000 candles lighting up their room, a promise for more of the same should she decide to join him in their bed.

In the gardens Kressara lifted up the practice sword and held it in her hands. It was styled like her Lhang but a tad bit heavier so that her muscles adapted to the extra weight and made her own weapon easier to wield. Conleth spoke as he showed her how attacks would come in and showed her how keeping her weapon in a central area was paramount as it only took a small movement to many of these attacks to parry them. Already she bore the bruises on her body and face from the hand to hand training. Conleth was hard on her but she knew that her enemies would be harder and she learned quickly how to manage her pain. She had mistaken him as frail and he had hit her hard on the cheek for her disrespect and dropping her guard. Several times Conleth feigned injury and when she moved to help him he attacked her in surprise. Her ribs still hurt each time she bent over due to that. Her enemies would not fight fair nor honorably to defeat her and day by day, lesson after lesson Kressara began to understand. Never drop your guard and never assume your enemy is defenseless.

Those same 2 boys passed by again and stopped this time. One, Havan Lucienne, a Lieutenant in the Cavalry had asked permission to step out with her 3 times. The other man with him, Cazel Unaris, a Non-commissioned officer scoffed at her openly. Havan did not though and had a much more ‘thoughtful’ look as they stopped to watch. He was fairly tall with a nice well-toned musculature. He had long blonde hair, a short cropped beard and the palest blue eyes she had ever seen. Very handsome and very much interested in her though everyone knew that...now.

“C’mon Cazel, she’s training,” he said. Cazel chuckled and looked at her and shook his head. “She’s playing at swords Havan, just go talk to her,” he said and nudged him forward with his shoulder. Conleth’s back was to them and he saw Kressara’s focus waiver when she saw them. He sighed. “Ok, we take a short break, hydrate girl,” he said snappishly. Kressara was covered in sweat and her shirt and pants had grass stains on them from where Conleth had knocked her onto the ground. She had a dirt smudge on her cheek and a large, yellow/purple bruise on the other cheek. “Uh, Kressara...may I...speak to you?” he asked uneasily. There were too many people here and all took notice of him approaching her. “Uh...alone a moment, please?” He asked sweetly.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:20 pm

Kressara was exhausted. She was covered in sweat and dirt and her breath came in pants. The training was hard, but Kressara was not going to give up. Somewhere deep in her soul she knew that a sword belonged in her hand. Even with the practice sword it felt...natural. She knew that as a woman she would have to learn to be at least as strong and as fast as the men, otherwise she wouldn't survive. Her lithe body enabled her to move more quickly than a man would and she began to use that to her advantage in her training with her grandfather. Her grandfather didn't go easy on her, and she would not have wanted that. She wasn't learning the sword for fun...she was learning it in order to survive and do what she needed to do. Her body was bruised and her muscles ached, but she never once complained. Her grandparents had left their lives behind to come to Minas Tirith and train her. She would not let them down...she couldn't.

Suddenly, she felt as if she were being watched. Glancing up she spotted Havan and Cazel watching her. Havan's eyes were solely focused upon her and she felt a blush come to her cheeks. For that brief moment her focus had been broken and she knew that had that happened during a real fight that she would have already been dead. Thankfully, her grandfather did not berate her (although she was doing that to herself and perhaps he knew that). She nodded and as soon as he realized they were taking a break Havan approached her. She took a ladleful of water and drank it as he asked to speak to her in private. She felt other eyes upon them and everyone had stopped to look at them.

"Ok," she finally said. She then stepped away from the gardens with Havan to a more private area. She suddenly felt rather self-conscious as to how she looked, but there was nothing to be done about it now.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:39 pm

Havan had always liked Kressara. A few years her elder he had spent time in studies with her and many other younglings. Girls fawned over him since he was old enough to hold a sword. As soldier’s went he was a good one with a keen mind for small unit tactics. Her father held him in high regard but Kressara had been explicit on her wishes and so Elessar had dissuaded all who came to call upon her.

He stood next to her, his hands clasped behind his back. His cheeks had a bit of color in them, he wasn’t well practiced in speaking to women. Especially one he liked as much as he liked Kressara. “I can see you are taking your training seriously. I wish I had soldiers with your kind of dedication Kressara,” Havan said and the way he said her name spoke volumes as to how he felt about her. “It is clear to me now...after my 3rd asking, that you do not wish to be sidetracked from...whatever goal you are striving for. I…” he began and then looked around briefly. “I wonder if this will always be so,” he asked. “You’ve...occupied my thoughts much of late Kressara,” he said and turned to face her. What he was going to tell her next was ironic considering her present state but he pressed on. “I think you quite beautiful Kressara and I am...interested in you...romantically,” he said honestly figuring since he had gone this far, why not go the rest of the way, though his cheeks colored more. “Is there no room in your life for me?” he asked, his bright blue eyes almost glittering in the open blue sky. He smelled kind of sweet, like a maple tree might at harvest to her nose. Sweat beaded on his forehead, proof of how difficult it was to speak his heart to her.

Havan was of a lesser noble family who lived in Rohan. He lived in a small flat in the city here and like Einor was a rising star among Gondor’s Officers.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:27 pm

As Kressara listened to Havan speak she felt her cheeks color even more and her face felt like it was on fire. She had not realized that men were interested in her romantically and she felt extremely embarrassed that she was standing there as dirty as she was while he said such nice things about her. Until that very moment she had not thought about men in a romantic way. She was still young, although old enough to be courted. Ever since her dreams had started she had become so focused on beginning her training that she had not thought of much else...until now. Her mind told her that she should not lead Havan on since she would not be remaining in Gondor, but her heart fluttered as he looked at her. He was handsome...very handsome and she knew that many other girls had their eyes on him...but he was looking at her and that made her feel incredibly special. Maybe he was the one from her dreams...always shrouded in black, but ever present. Perhaps she was supposed to be with him.

"I am at a loss for words Havan," she told him honestly. "I have always thought you very handsome, but did not know that you felt this way about me. I do need to focus on my training...but perhaps I could find some time...."

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:46 pm

Haven’s cheeks remained spotted with color as he listened to her. However his eyes grew large at what she just said. “I do not wish to steer you away from your goals Kressara! I would never ask for such a thing. If I could help you in your training...in any way, you have but to ask if my duties allow it. I...I just have these...thoughts and feelings about you. And in my dreams, you appear as well,” He said and the brief increase in color would tell her all she needed to know what his ‘dreams’ about her involved. Havan hadn’t intended to lay his heart bare to her right then but he felt he may not get another chance and so he seized the opportunity and left nothing unsaid. That and he had carried these feelings for her for long enough without voicing them. Serethiel ofcourse heard the entire exchange but hadn’t even looked their way.

“If you do have time, I would like to get to know you better and for you to get to know me,” he said and then leaned toward her. “And...if holding your hand and kissing your lips was favorable to you, I would like that very much as well.” he whispered taking a very bold stance in hopes it caught her even more off guard.

This was a risk but if others approached her after him he doubted she’d forget his words here and now. He was on the razor’s edge of crass but he thought that she’d likely know the difference. Now that he said it, he figured she’d think about it now too. ‘And thank you Father for that bit of advice on how to get a woman to think about me’.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 1:58 pm

Kressara's cheeks colored deeper when Havan mentioned having dreams about her. This was all very new to her and she felt both unsure and intrigued at the same time. She had seen men fawn over her other sisters, but she had never thought that someone like Havan would ever be interested in her. She did not think herself as pretty as her sisters and had not realized that she had recently begun to mature into a very beautiful young woman and looked remarkably like her mother.

Kressara was about to respond to Havan when he suddenly leaned forward and mentioned holding her hand and kissing her. If he had wanted to catch her off guard then it had certainly worked. Kressara felt a flood of feelings rush through her body and she felt as if her cheeks were on fire. Had her brother or father heard what he had just said he likely would never be allowed to be around her again, but they weren't there and Havan would see a smile tug at the corner of Kressara's lips.

"Well...you'll just have to wait and see, now won't you?"

And with a flirtatious grin Kressara walked back over to where her grandfather was waiting for her.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 2:19 pm

“Boy!” Serethiel said and beckoned Havan to approach her. Kressara saw her talking to him and havan seemed to be nodding as she spoke though she could not hear what was being said. By his look toward her though she knew it was about her.

Serethiel’s training was a little bit easier than Conleth’s and also not. She had to focus and concentrate and today that wasn’t easy at all with thoughts of Havan’s lips on hers floating around inside her head. ‘Damn him! How DARE he say such things! I’m no trull!’ She thought but then wanted him to kiss her too. Her first shot glanced off the target completely and arched up into the air to drive into a tree trunk with a loud, ‘Ka-chunk’. Conleth had been smoking his pipe as he watched and he removed it to gawk at her. Serethiel clipped at her ear for that, she could have hurt someone! “Pay attention girl or you’ll think running the guard towers was nothing!” she growled in annoyance then continued.

The next day she was surprised to see Havan there at the gardens. He wore leather armor and a helm and held a hide shield and practice sword. Conleth was there talking to him. When she arrived he turned and regarded her. “Ah, I trust you have completed your warm up exercises Kressara? Havan has ‘agreed’ to aid me in your training,” he said though Havan winced at Kressara and mouthed the words, ‘I’m sorry’ Toward her as if he had no choice in this which kressara could believe he didn’t. “You will spar with him and for this contest, you will ‘touch’ him with your blade. Each touch ends the bout. Oh and be advised, he has no such restrictions upon you,” he said. Havan had a longsword practice sword while she held the longer one as before.

“Be advised, Havan has instructions to work hard to get past your defences child,” Serethiel said from behind her. “I’ve given him...special dispensation should he do well and woe to him should he prove to not do as he has been told,” She said then moved to go sit down to start her knitting.



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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:14 pm

That night Kressara went to bed thinking of swords, arrows, and Havan. His words replayed over and over in her head and she felt giddy with excitement at seeing him again. What she had not expected the following morning was to see him in the gardens holding a practice sword. She was obviously confused as to what was going on and she blinked when her grandfather informed her that Havan was there to aid him in her training and that she was to spar with him. She glanced at Havan long enough to see him mouth "I'm sorry". Kressara had not been practicing swordsmanship for nearly as long as Havan and she hoped she was not going to embarrass herself in front of him after their discussion the day before. Kressara knew she was going to need to focus much harder today and she was going to have to put aside any feelings she felt towards Havan and not see him as the man she liked, but rather as an enemy. She swung her sword a few times to keep her muscles warmed up as she listened to her grandmother. She nodded a little, but wondered what the "special dispensation" was. She readied herself and looked to Havan and gave him a little nod.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:43 pm

As soon as Conleth raised his arm that had been between them Havan attacked all out. He was not a blademaster but he was quite experienced against one, two and even three opponents. He deflected her blow with his shield and struck her hard on the left hip almost immediately. His practice sword stung when it hit and unshed tears rose in Kressara’s eyes. Havan was not just participating, he was serious as if he had something important indeed to spurn him. That and it had only been a few seconds in this first bout. He moved like a viper, was stronger than she and Kressara knew she was going to have to harden her thoughts against distraction because Havan certainly was. He fought like a man possessed and though he pulled his strikes, the practice sword left welts where it struck her.  

Bout after bout Havan struck her. In the arm, the leg, the side, the hips, the shoulder and one embarrassing strike on her bum when he struck and pivoted and then struck in the opposite direction. She had touched him twice with her longer blade but one of those had cost her a strike from his blade against her stomach. It wasn’t just a a defeat, it was like he was fighting a child at times though she felt herself getting better against him. At times she thought she knew what he was going to do before he did it but sometimes she hesitated and it cost her each time. As serethiel prepared her lunch and Havan was dismissed by Conleth, Conleth came to sit with her on the wall and even opened up her cloth for her due to how sore her fingers were from holding her weapon. Had she made a mistake? Was this really what she was supposed to do? Havan had embarrassed her...in front of everyone!

“You seem...unsettled Kressara, speak your mind,” Conleth said plainly as he chewed a piece of dried apricot and looked out over the garden. “Either the boy respects you a great deal Kressara or he hates you,” Serethiel said with a smug, knowing grin as she ate a green bean.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 5:28 pm

To say that Kressara was embarrassed by the whole debacle would be an understatement. She had had absolutely no chance against Havan. He was far more experienced and skilled than she and he had not held back. She was left bruised, both physically and emotionally and found herself angry at her grandparents for putting her in that situation. She didn't know how she was going to face Havan again. It had been an unfair fight from the start. However, she also knew that she may always be in a "fair fight". Had this all just been some unspoken lesson? Why had they chosen Havan to fight against her?

"Why did you have Havan fight me?" she asked outright. "Was this some kind of test or a lesson and why him specifically?"

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 6:25 pm

Serethiel sighed and looked at Conleth them back to Kressara. “You know when you shoot your bow at a mo omg target that you are anticipating where it shall be. You know where it will end up I. Order to pierce it with the arrowhead. You aim and judge and fire. With the sword it is no different. You anticipate, you judge you attack or defend. You are great with the bow Kressara. I’ve seen you hit complicated shots with minimal difficulty. Your intuition is as good or better than your mothers ever was. Yet when you pick up your practice sword you seem to lose that sense within yourself. You cease trusting your instincts and try to think your way through a fight,” she explained as she ate a piece of dried plum.

“As far as Havan is concerned, he thinks very highly of you. Enough to allow me to manipulate him into doing what I wanted. You kept trying to anticipate his actions with your head and not your heart because you are also fond of him and you shut that part of yourself down when you faced him. This lesson is an important one Kressara. Not always are your opponents your enemy. Sometimes you are on opposite sides of an ideal and you may find yourself fighting a friend, a neighbor, a relative or a lover. You must focus your instincts always each time you draw your sword Kressara. And I assure you, this was harder on the boy than it was on you,” she said as Conleth just sat back and ate his lunch as if not really listening to them but she knew he was. She was bruised and battered but not terribly so.

“I give you leave today to reflect on this Kressara. I believe Havan was headed to the market square...if you wished to speak to him,” she said idly. As she ate a few pomegranate seeds.

Havan threw down the helm, the shield and took of his jerkin in frustration. ‘Damn that..that woman!’ He said. Serethiel had made it obvious that if he did not do as she wanted that he would not be speaking to Kressara. He had not meant to hurt her but he had little choice. He only hoped she would forgive him. He wasn’t certain what he was doing there in the market but he wanted to buy something to give to Kressara. What he didn’t know but he had to do...something! He felt horrible and more than a little embarrassed...hurting a woman! What was he thinking when he agreed to that!

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 7:05 pm

Kressara used some water to clean off her face and hands. She pulled her hair from her braid and ran her fingers through it, trying to get out all the knots. She was still dressed in her training clothes, but she didn't care and she knew Havan wouldn't either. As she walked towards the market she reflected on all that her grandmother had said. It had been a difficult lesson, but she understood now why it had been important. She had become so wrapped up in trying to become what she saw in her future that she had ceased trusting her instincts with the sword. Her mind would start to race and she would over think fights. Her ability was there, but she had yet to release it because her mind kept it trapped. Deep in her soul Kressara knew that this fight with Havan was her turning point. She would return to training tomorrow a different swordswoman, but for today she wanted to find Havan and apologize.

As she entered the market she began to scan the crowd for any sign of him. Finally, she spotted him by a stall and she made her way through the hoards of people to reach him. His back was to her and she gently reached up and touched his shoulder. When he turned around she looked at him.

"I...I just wanted to apologize for what my grandparents made you do today. It was all a lesson for me...and one that I've learned, but I hope it won't affect your feelings towards me."

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Re: On the Edge

Post by Conleth on Mon Feb 26, 2018 8:58 pm

Havan felt someone tap his shoulder and he turned around caught completely caught off guard. He listened dumbfounded that it was who it was. What he held in his hands completely forgotten at the moment. “Kressara?” He asked in surprise, his cheeks coloring. He held in his hands a fletching guard, exquisitely made and obviously made for a woman. It was a hardened, boiled leather, a light gray etched in black. The elven rune on it meant ‘To Fly Straight’ and obviously it was made by elves. He noticed her pause and looked down at it and then he quickly folded his arm back behind his back to hide it and his blushes continued.

“Oh, uh...You don’t have to apologize Kressara. I...I should be the one to apologize to you. I wouldn’t have agreed if I knew...but Lady Phelan...she’s...well she got me to agree before I even had a chance to ask what I was supposed to really do,” he said feeling awkward and he tilted his head and scratched his neck with his other hand.

“Did I...hurt you?” he asked and looked over over. When he did that he blushed again and she’d have seen his eyes drift across her body and lingered just a moment too long on her breasts before he looked back up into her eyes and bit his lip with the effort to not look at her again. “God Kressara...I don’t usually have so much trouble talking to a woman. You frazzle my wits,” he said honestly and smiled at her, a warm, inviting smile that only enhanced his features. His hair was mussed a bit and that only made him look more rough and rugged. Honesty was one of his best traits. Everyone knew they’d get the honest truth from Havan. And not always the truth they wanted to hear. He also spoke his mind and that had gotten him into trouble on occasion.

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Re: On the Edge

Post by XslvrstarX on Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:10 pm

Glancing down, Kressara noticed Havan holding something in one of his hands. She only got a quick look at it before he deftly moved it behind his back, but she could see it was a fletching guard and it was beautifully made. It appeared to be of Elvish make and had Elvish writing embossed in the leather. Kressara began to wonder if he had bought it for her, but if he had she did not want to ruin his opportunity to give it to her. She couldn't help but smile when Havan told her that her grandmother had basically tricked him into agreeing to spar with her. She strongly believed her grandmother had a reason for choosing Havan for such a task. Neither of her grandparents did anything without a reason behind it. That much she had learned very quickly.

Kressara blushed when Havan asked her if he had hurt her. She could see his eyes drift over her body and linger upon her breasts, which caused her to blush even harder. As he looked up her eyes caught his and she smiled shyly at him. "No, you didn't hurt me...apart from my pride, but that will heal. Perhaps we can spar again in the future when I know I can beat you."

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Re: On the Edge

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