Page name: et tavern pt 3 [Exported view] [RSS]
2010-02-02 04:43:03
Last author: Darth Jacein
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Zzeey looked in awe at the room, this was an armory to rival any drow nobles house for sure."Amazing." He whispered to him self."well go on."He said smiling to tell." Fear, this is a truly amazing room."

Lestat appeared as if out of thin air, behind aureus."so how goes things with the drow?"

Fear smiled at Zzeey. "Thank you. I made some additions from our past adventures." She said moving her arm towards the smallest wall that wasn't quite full yet. "What can I say... I like to be ready for anything."

Talla just stood there for a moment stunned. "I-I don't know how to start." She said very very softly.

"Short of stakes and holy water, you've got every thing."He grinned, and looked to Talla."Well."He went down on a knee, and looked her eye to eye."Just start some where, and pick a weapon, or if you cant reach, ill get it..and just see what feels right, something that wont throw you off balance , so something not too heavy.."he was trying to give her the advice the weapons master of his house gave him.He smiled."if a person was meant to wield a weapon it will feel like they have been using it all of their lives as soon as they find it. Just be careful and dont hurt your self on a blade."

Talla nodded and gave Zzeey a hug before walking over to one of the glass cases.

"Don't worry Talla the glass won't stop you from getting a weapon. Its just a security thing." Feara said walking over next to her reaching through the glass pulling down a long sword. "Just like that."

Talla nodded and carefully pulled out a short sword that she almost dropped because it was to heavy.

"Maybe something a little lighter."He smiled, and looked to Feara, hoping the ward that had been put on the group so many adventures ago was still in place. He quirked an eye brow, and asked mentally."does this thing still work?"

Feara looked up from the weapon she was holding and straight into Zzeey's eyes. So long since you tried that. She responded not moving her eyes from his.

Talla nodded and leaned the weapon against the wall and turned walking to another wall of weapons and easily pulled down a wooden staff. "Now what?"

Zzeey smiled, but didn't move his eyes from fear."Give it a twirl..see if it feels right, and if it doesn't then move on, if it does..move on, but keep it out..see if something works better." I you think we're making a mistake, i mean..shes so young.

Talla nodded and took the staff in both hands giving it a twirl like Zzeey said. As she did she found that it came very easily and threw it up in the air and caught it as it came back down taking up a stance that she had seen done by the drow; one foot back the other one bent as if in a defensive posture.

Feara gave a weak smile and started to swing the sword away from talla. Look at her. She may be young but we must help control her mind before what ever happened to her down there turns her mad. This is the only way Zzeey.

I know, its just..I don't want her to get hurt, by accident while training, or in one of the many fights we are bound to get into. Zzeey smiled and tilted his head to the side."Talla ..where did you learn that stance?"

Talla looks up at Zzeey quickly returning to a standing stance. "Um-uh.. no where.." She said quickly

Then why don't you ask her if she really wants to do this. The girl has to grow up sometime and realize she can't be shielded from everything. For all that is good she was with the drows for god knows how long. If she can catch on to there fighting stances then how do we not know she hasn't caught onto their magic and way of thinking? Feara replied putting the weapon back up and pulling out a magical scimitar.

I don't, but she's to young to have been corrupted..she's to innocent.Zzeey walked over too her, and again kneeled down to her height."Talla, you don't have to do this, learn how to fight i mean..if you want, we can protect you. I mean, we will protect you either way, but if you don't want to do this then you don't have to."

Being young has nothing to do with it and you know it. Feara swung the sword for a while before sighing.

Talla looked up at Zzeey. "But I can fight." She asked confused.

"But you don't have to..if you want to learn, i will teach you." He smiled, weakly, hearing Feara. I know..but I don't think the drow corrupted her..they didn't break her, i can see it in her eyes..and besides, I'm giving her a choice none of us ever had.

Talla looked at Zzeey her face brightened up. "Really you will teach me??"

Feara let out another sigh. Maybe not yet... we must prepare her for it though if it does happen.

Aureus jumped, her sword half way drawn. "Lestat, I could have--" She stopped herself. She probably couldn't have. Which was extremely depressing, so she sheathed her sword and faced him, talking quietly. "It's fine, Lestat. His kin are chasing us, I don't really understand him and them, and now we're teaching a little girl how to kill. Just great. How have you been? It's been a while."

Zzeey nodded, yes..but not today, its been a long night, we need rest.."Have you decided if this is what your going to use?"

Lestat smiled."No you could have."Just to illustrate his point , he was behind her suddenly." You never will, the drow are the most evil race to run across this world, and those who have not lived it can not know it. and as to the girl, no not kill aureus, you know them better than that, they will teach her to defend, and then fight..but not kill..not yet."

Talla nodded still very happy. "Yes Zzeey. But I am not tired." As to the contrary she tried to hide her yawn after she said it.

Feara let out a very soft laugh and put all the weapons up except her staff. "Tall one day you will truly understand the greatness of the staff you have chosen." To Zzeey she simply said, I will make her a set of small knives as well. Just remember we aren't training her to kill, only to defend. So it won't be so much on her. I just hope she can still be a kid too.

Aureus nodded. "I know. In fact... I'll make sure she still acts like a kid... running around, mud covered, playin growth cattepillars and all of that."

She smiled at him. "And anyway, even if Drow are the most evil race, there is still good in them. Small, maybe, but there is. A Yin cannot exist without some Yang, even if that is in other people. Zzeey proves that, and Shri I believe is working on it."

"Zzeey is one in a million, and chris world was turned upside down..they dont count."Lestat grinned."But the drow have no yang..unles you count surface elves.."He shrugged and looked to the stairs."i think they're done."

Zzeey nodded, and said."C'mon, lets get you to bed." Im sure she will, and the knive might be usefull, i just hope she doesnt stab me. He laughed, as he remembered the first time he had sparred with his teacher with out the protective padding, he had slipped through his masters defence , and accidentally stabbed him in the rear.

Feara let out another laugh. Like it will hurt much. Nah we have a sparing room that automaticaly heals wounds. Feara took Talla's staff from her and headed toward the door.

Talla looked at Zzeey very difiantly. "I am NOT tired!!" She said stamping her foot on the ground.

Zzeey quirked a brow at the girl."i am truly sorry ma'am , but i am, and i assume most of the rest of us are." he silently thought to feara. im not entirly familiar with human children, but i assume this little out burst is infact betraying her tiredness. "And even if you are not tired, you could still sit and rest, its been a long night, with an even longer journey ahead of us."

Feara looked at Zzeey and smiled. Yes. It seems even a quite grown up girl can throw tantrums.

Talla looked at Zzeey hurt. "But I am nooot tired!!" She said again in a whinning voice.

Aureus looked over that the girl throwing a tantrun and stepped close to Feara, whispering, "Do you have a hot bath where she could calm down, get tired, then go to sleep? A bed will be more enticing after that."

Feara looked at Aureus and nodded. "Aye, I am just getting such a kick out of this and how Zzeey is reacting."

As if in response to Aureus Talla ran to the back of the room. "I don't wanna bath!!" She said in the same whinning voice.

Aureus threw her head back and laughed loudly. "Hahaha! Child, if only you know what pleasant gifts baths are! Hahaha...whew... How bout if I put in bubbles? Do you like bubble baths?"

"Bubbles? What are bubbles?" Talla asked stoping her tantrum.

zzeey cocked his head to the side."Yeah, what are these bubbles?"

Lestat took this most oportune moment of calmness and mentally put the girl to sleep.

Zzeey caught her and looked confused, then a look of dawning realization hit him, and looked at lestat."what did you do." Lestat grinned and looked at the group innocently."She seemed tired, so i helped her fall asleep." Zzeey shook his head."i cant beleive you, you cant just make a little girl pass out." Lestat looked confused." why not?" Zzeey shook his headc, and lifted her up, nd began to carry talla to her room.

Aureus glared at him. "It's a form of abuse. She has her own right to put herself to sleep. And I bet she would have loved bubbles. Tomorrow night, then."

Feara looked at Lestat and shook her head. "You shouldn't have done that. It takes a lot to get a child to trust you. But I have a feeling Talla won't be the only one needing a bubble bath." Feara said smililing at Zzeey as she ran to catch up with him to show him her room. There will be one hell of an explination when she wakes up in the morning. She said mentaly to Zzeey.

Zzeey smiled. i doubt it..she wouldnt believe us if we told her, so..i guess we could say she was more tired than we thought and passed out, i mean..its been a long couple of days..for all of us. Zzeey waited for feara to open the door. and besides, we have to head out after the sun rises, the next towns a half a nights walk.

Lestat shook his head."All i was trying to do was help, she was clearly tired."

Feara oppened the door to her old room. It was decorated in red roses. She quickly ran to the bed and pulled off the white sheet covering it revealing a mahgony bed and black silk covers. She pulled these covers back. There is no way Jace is going to be able to travel in the sun. But all I need is my hour of meditation. So I will finish up with her weapons and place the spells back on the grounds. "Sleep tight little one." She said outloud to Talla.

Zzeey nodded. i meant to say sets, when the sun sets. he silently stepped outside the room with feara, and closed the door."But now, i think im going to get some sleep. So im going to say good night to the others." Zzeey slowly walked down the stairs."shes asleep, and in her bed." to which lestat ."Your welcome." Zzeey ignored him as he walked over to aureus."good night love."He said as her gave her a quick kiss."aww" lestat said to them, in a slightly mocking tone. Zzeey blushed, but said nothing. Instead he glared daggers at the vampire.

Then goodnight my dear friend. Feara said as she too followed him down the stairs. "I hope you all find your rooms suitable. If I am need just yell. Nice to see you again Lestat." With that she turned and walked down the hallway and into the kitchen.

Aureus followed Zzeey, then opened the door to the room next to his and collasped in the bed. I guess this isn't the first time I've slept through the day..."

Lestat shook his head and vanished, he would sleep some where else today.

Jace snored contently,sleeping soundly while every one else delt whith their own issues.

Feara poured herself a glass of wine and walked out the front door. Setting the glass down on porch she went out into the middle of the yard and started chanting. After a half-hour chanting the barriers where up again and would let them pass through when they left without having to bring them back down and up again. Once satisfied Feara returned to the porch as Black flew down and landed on her shoulder. "Well good morning black. Is everything okay?" Feara listened to the silent reply and nodded her head picking up her glass and walked back into the house locking the door and heading down to the basement where she stayed all day working and meditating with her lovely crow, black.

Jace rose as night fell, he silently gathered his things, and changed into a green pair of loose cotton pants, and a black "v" neck leather vest. He contemplated pulling his hair back into a pony tail, but chose to leave his auburn locks down. he grabbed his weapons belt, armor, and pack , and took them down stairs. he looked around, and as usual, found he was the only one up.

Zzeey came down stairs, in a pair of pants. he nodded at jace, his bare feet made no noise as he crossed the floor."Good evening." jace said with a smile."Whats on the agenda?" Zzeey looked towards the stairs and replied,"Wait for the others to wake up,and start tallas first lesson before we head out."

Feara walkd up the stairs and joined the two of them in her now dirty clothes. "Good evening."

"Well met."Zzeey said eyeing her disheveled apearence."long day?" Jace asked, smirking.

Zzeey was wondering if he should wake talla up, or if he should wait for her to wake up on her own."

Feara smiled, "very long day. I hope your sleep was peaceful." Let her sleep a little while longer. The poor thing has probably never slept in for most of her life. She thought to Zzeey.

Zzeey just nodded and stepped out side, and stretched. im going to warm up a bit.

Jace smiled at feara."So,..whatta you wanna do?"

Stay within the ground Zzeey, I realy don't wanna treat electic burns. Feara sighed. "I want a nice hot shower and clean clothes. After that I don't care. What do you wanna do?"

Zzeey nodded and dropped into a defensive, slowly working his way forward in a line, attacking , and then sliding back in a flurry of evasive and defensive movement. ok will do.

Jace shrugged."I dunno, but im sure we can find something."He said shrugging and looking around.

"Depends on what you are in the mood for. But i will be right back. I realy need this smell gone." Feara headed toward the stairs.

Jace nodded and watched her leave."wonder what she has in mind."

Feara disapeared up to her floor and sliped into her room throwing her dirty clothes in the corner and sliped into a hot shower. About 15 minuets later she got out, got dressed in a simple black slacks and a white flowly blouse and but on her black soft boots and walked back down the stairs her wet hair curling up. "Decided what you want to do?"

Jace smiled and shrugged."You are the host, and i being the humble guest , leave it up to you to decide what we are doing."

"We could go for a walk." Feara suggested.

"sounds good." He said, and nodded towards the door."wanna go now."

"Yea lets go." Feara took his arm and headed twoard the door. Were going for a walk Zzeey. Contact me when Talla wakes up.

Zzeey was in the middle of a front flip when he heard feara. Yes ma'am

Jace walked let feara lead, it being her house and all."Its called kade, its a drow martial art."Jace said nodding at zzeey."Its based on tight sweeping motions,and is mainly used when one has a small knife in his or her hands.but zzeek uses it when he is unarmed, he believes hand to han combat is a good skill to should have seen zzeey and liam fight together ..zzeey so swift and elegant..liam was just a huge brawler at heart...but anyway enough of that.." As jace said this zzeey rocked back on one heel, and spun. with one arm crooked in front of him, one in back, he resembled a tornado. His leg was held infront of him, off the ground and pulled into his chest. as he spun his arms extended and retracted in a flurry of motion. at the end of this display he slammed his front foot on the ground and launched into a back flip. He grunted as he landed and slipped his front leg all the way forward and his back leg as far back as it would go. with a deep breath in he quickly slid back up to his feet, and began working from offense back to defense, going through the circle, from defense to offense now back to defense, he slowed down, and finally came to a stop covered in sweat.

Feara stood there watching Zzeey for a while before giving him an impressed nod and continued on. "It has been a while since I have been home. I remeber when I was a kid growing up. I was taught if I got in a fight to kill the other person. Now I look back and laugh at such a remark. A lot has changed. I remeber falling out of that tree-" SHe points to a very huge oak tree. "One of the kids from the school had chased me up the tree. I was always hated becuase it was my parents running the school. He threw a huge rock and me and hit me square in the back. It hit me so hard I fell. The next thing I know one of the few instructors who taught us had casted a spell and I was floating down to the ground..." Feara seemed lost in her thoughts just staring at the tree.

"Child hood.. good times huh."He shook his head. he began to say something else, but was cut of by lestat, who was suddenly in the tree."There is a festival two night from now in a town north of here...we should go, its a large town built in a huge hole, almost crater like." Lestat was suddenly behind the two of them."Shall i wake up talla...zzeey looks ready to go." with out an answer he vanished again."He seems chipper." Jace grinned, and watched zzeeys surprise as he finished a hand spring, nearly landing ontop of lestat and the sleeping talla."Time to wake up my dear."He whispered in the sleeping girls ear, sending the command deep into her subconscious.

"They were my best... or at least most of it was." Feara watched Lestat shaking her head.

Talla quickly pulled the covers over her head and let out a whine in protest.

Aureus woke up on her own, still unused to sleeping during the day. She left her room, still tying her hair up when Zzeey crept into Talla's room. Smiling, she knew the child wouldn't wake up. Who would? She would have spat flame and curled up again.

She grabbed her things, which weren't that many, and headed for Talla's room. Gently she picked up the child and carried her outside.

"Feara, if we're leaving, can we pack some food to take along? That way Talla can eat when she's ready. I'll carry her till then."

Zzeey shook his head."Before we head out..when am i going to start training her."He smiled and began to tie up his hair, trying to cool off."If we are constantly moving when am i suppossed to start?" He smiled and wiped sweat from his forehead.

Jace nodded."Aye,it makes since to me..we should stay for a while. one more night..the town lestats talking about could be reached tomorrow night, if one of us carries the child, and the rest move as fast as we can." Lestat nodded."which you guys havent been doing..i could teleport the child there, and you four could meet up with will make your travel quicker." Jace looked to feara, with an eyebrow raised. Zzeey calmly projected a thought to the group. I think he ate a monk...Thats what usually makes him this hyper. Jace noded."Well, i think lestats idea is sound."

Feara leaned against a tree and thought for a moment. "Lets stay another night so we can start Talla's training. As to her being transported to the next town, I don't agree with it. If Talla is going to travel with us she needs to get use to the walks. If anything I will get her a pony at the next town." Oh boy. Feara thought in reply not wanting to voice her thought in fear of scaring Talla.

Talla just layed in Aureus's arms not wanting to move and fell back asleep.

Jace shrugged."Yeah but heres the thing...we tend to make..dramatic entrances and we dont need too much attention drawn to us..besides half this continent knows me..and i carry a very bad picture over my head."

Zzeey shook his head and put a hand on jaces shoulder."I think aureus is right, if we let lestat take her, then she ..i mean she needs to get used to the walks right?"

Jace looked to his friends."Cmon, this is a group that can run down drow, even when their riding those lizard offence to the little one, but we are faster if lestat takes her, or someone carries her."

"Ill do it."Zzeey said, looking to the girl."I dont mind, if you could carry my pack." Jace rolled his eyes."Fine" Zzeey smiled and clapped." we need to wake talla."

Lestat smiled, and broke the sleep hold he had on her mind.

Mean while, miles in the other direction, rumble was sleeping soundly, well not quite."By the gods hybrid!" He said as he chased his traveling companion around a group of saplings."Im gunna stab ye!..Shri distract him!"He yelled hoping the drowess would join in the fun.

Feara layed a hand on Jace's sholder. "It is better this way. Besides grand enterances are our specialty. Oh and Zzeey, it might be better if you two use the trainingroom tonight."

Talla looked at Zzeey with sleep filled eyes.

Zzeey smiled, and looked to feara."Could we take you up on last nights offer, and maybe get some breakfast?

Feara laughed, she had almost forgot about breakfast. "Yes, yes of course. Come on." She said turning around and walking briskly into the house and down the hallway and into the kitchen, where a pile of clean white sheets lay on the table neatly folled and a crow sitting on top of them.

Jace cocked his head to the side,"Bird?"He looked to feara."...Bird?"

Feara walked over and pet the bird. "Yep, Jace this is Black. Black this is Jace." As if in reply Black gave Jace a nod. "Black is the guardian of these grounds."

Jace nodded, giving the bird a slight bow."Must be a very powerful being to gaurd these grounds, and come in such a small package."

Feara let out a giggle. "Well, you know my family was never ordinnary. So what do you all want for breakfest?"

Jace smiled."well personally, i cant eat solid foods, well i can but the dont do a thing for i think im going to go hunting."He said, nodding and excusing himself from the group.

Zzeey shrugged."something filling i supposse, im not too choosey."

Feara watched Jace go letting out a sigh. "Well be choosey will yea." Feara said to Zzeey playfuly.

"something with meat..and maybe.."He grinned."A potatoe?"

"Sasages and hashbrowns then?" Feara asked moving twoard the pantry.

"Sounds delightful." He smiled.he honestly had no idea though, not having eaten much food on the surface, other than what was cooked around a camp fire, which was usually some sort of bird or deer.

Out side, jace had taken off his chest armor,and quiet as a breeze."His heart quickend as he caught a scent. Like a bolt of lightning, he shot off through the woods.But in his excitment he missed a step, alerting his intended pray to his presence. The deer shot off through the woods, and jace gave chase.

Feara smiled and walked in comming out with a bowl of patatoes and a bowl of sasages and walked over to the stove pulling down pots and pans. Feara threw a small knife twoard Zzeey. "Peel the potatoes."

Zzeey grinned,"Fine."He said in a mockingly angry voice."I used to peel something similar in my younger years." He smiled and contently began to peel the vegtable.

Feara looked over at Zzeey shaking her head before taking another knife cutting up the sasuage. "What might this smiliar thing be?"

Jace thundered through the woods, and lept through the air. with a thud the deer hit the ground, and jace sunk his teeth into the creatures neck. It wasnt the best vintage, but he wasnt choosy.

zzeey smiled as he set the bowl down."Some sort of fungus."He turned to feara."So umm, you mentioned something about a training room."

Feara threw the cut meat into a pan and turned back to Zzeey. "Hmmm... yes, it is in a small building out back. Finish up and I will show you while breakfest is cooking." She said turning around and adding a bunch of spices to another pot.

Zzeey finished his last potato."Im ready.."

Feara nodded throwing them into a pot as well and cleaned of her hands. "Alright lets go then." She turned and walked out of the kitchen and back to the back of the house and down the back door. Once outside she started walking to a building that was about 200 yards from the house.

Zzeey smiled and followed her,"C'mon talla."He said, waving her over.

Talla skiped over to walk next to Zzeey yawning.

They walked up to a small looking concreat building with a huge oak door. Above it was scrolled in ancient elven 'As you step through this halo door you will come out a warrior and when you do the fates will be tested'

"Come on." Feara said opening the door and holding it open for the two of them to enter.

Aureus woke up groggy from lack of sleep for so long. She cooked herself breakfast and with some directions from Liam, she wandered over to the building.

Her eyes rested over the words on top of the door. She glanced at Feara, wondering if onlookers were allowed in. "Is that a curse or a friendly greeting?"

"For some it's a greeting, for others it's a curse." Feara said lost in some of the old memories.

"Feara what does it say?" Talla asked looking up at the words.

"My dear Talla it states that once you enter you will come out a warrior but then the fates will be tested. It's something that we all had drilled into our mind with many more sayings." Feara said softly watching Talla.

"Alright, that's it. I'm not going in. I'lm gonna make me some breakfast. Caio." Aureus turned and walked back to Feara's house.

Zzeey looked at feara wearily, but stepped inside anyways. The place had an atmosphere of fear and anger, but triumph as well. he got the sense that this place was full of memories, and had seen fights numbering beyond the imagination."Well..."

Lestat was suddenly standing behind aureus."I think i know why i like picking at you."

Aureus jumped a little at his voice, just as she always did. She eyed the vampire a little genuinely interested in him. "Oh? And why's that?"

"Breakfest is cooking." Feara said to Aureus before heading in after Talla. As they walked in to a huge room with weapons on each wall Feara smiled to all the memories that came to her. "Welcome to the training room." She said softly.

Lestat smiled."Because you isolate your self from the rest so frequently..i wonder why?"

Aureus looked at him, raising an eyebrow. "Oh, that's coming from you, who's hardly with this group any? That's funny. And why do you keep yourself distanced from everybody?"

Zzeey smiled."This seems..rather intimidating.."He smiled and set his pack down for the first time in a while, and sliding out the protective padding for his swords.

Feara laughed softly. "It seemed intimidating for all of us when we were first brought here." Feara said pulling Talla's staff out of the air. "You won't need those." Feara said watching Zzeey.

Jace smiled and treaded off into the woods, he was well fed now.He smiled and climbed a branch and napped, basking in the starlight.

Zzeey nodded, and brought his scimitars to bear."Ok now talla,Im thinking we should start with defense...Do you know a defensive posture?"

Lestat grinned."Its simple..jace is hunting, feara is busy, and zzeey..things are awkward when it comes to me and zzeey.."

She nodded. "Alright. It's simple for me, too. I dislike hanging around blubbering drunks who can't even calculate two plus two. I don't like hunting if I don't have to, and Feara and Zzeey are quite busy... in something I do not want to be involved in. Is that quite alright with you?"

Feara handed Talla her staff before turning and taking a seat in one of the corrners on a small couch.

Talla looked at Zzeey for a moment before sliding her right foot back evening the weight between both feet while brining the staff infront of her at an angle. "Like this?"

Zzeey nodded."Now,since i have blades, and you have a wooden staff it wouldnt be wise to block head on, but more of a slapping of my blades, knocking them to the side..ok?"He took a step back."Now lets see how well you can defend." He cam in slowly, overly slowly, hoping not to scare her. He thought to feara as his left blade came in , in a wide arc, over tallas head. Do you think we should do this with out padding, she might get frightened.

Talla squeked as the blade came over her head and brought up her staff to try and hit the blade.

Yes we should. She needs to defeat her fear if she wishes to stay alive. Feara thought back watching them both.

If you say so he smiled and let the attack connect."Try pushing forward with your front hand and pulling backwards with your back hand, you get more power and control. " he said coming in for a double thrust aiming for her abdomen.

Talla brought her staff down pushing with her front hand and pulling the staff back with her other hand. "LIke this?"

He smiled, she was a natural."Yes, exactly."He stepped back, and came in again. This time though he moved a little faster, slashing at her legs.

Instead of trying to block his sword she jumped back.

He cursed under his breath, he had over swung, and threw him self off balance. But was was a weapons master, and could improvise when needed. He stabbed his scimitars into the ground, and launched into a hand spring that brought him over and behind talla. He landed with a spin that was aimed send talla back on her heals.

Talla squeaked trying to turn around but instead fell on her arse.

Show off. Feara thought to Zzeey shaking her head.

Jealous He turned to talla. "every move shoudl either give an advantage to you , or at least take one from your opponent."He smiled and held his hand out to talla."Now, lets try again, but this time it might help if you tried not to cross your feet when moving."

Why would I be? Feara asked pulling a dager from the wall beside her messing with it. "If you want to get out of the way Talla it is better to tumble." Feara said softly.

Talla took his hand and let him pull her up grabbing her staff and nodding to them both.

Because i am extremely agile, even for a drow..and you arent..not even for a surface elf. He said, jokingly."Now, im going to use high attacks, so just concentrate on knocking the to the side ok?" He launched into a slightly quicker array of stabs and slashes.

Oh? And I would let that bother me why? After all I use magic and the bow, not brute strenght.Feara said in amusment.

Talla started blocking the blades but found it realy hard to keep up. A couple of times she was closed to get cut.

"Oh for hells sake, ZZEEY don't go so fast. The child is already falling behinde!." Feara praticaly shouted jumping to her feet.

"Sorry."He said, falling back into a slower more comfortable rhythm. Brute strength? that was pure grace...jace is brute strength...

Feara breath a sigh of relief and took her seat once more. Oh, you know what I mean. So when exactly are we leaving?

Talla came back infront of Zzeey trying to block every move. When she missed one she would swing her self to the left or right so the blade wouldn't hit her.

The next night i believe He smiled and move his swords in opposite directions. rather than moving in tandem he movved in odd symetrical pattern.

Talla seemed to quickly fall in line with Zzeey's motions and began to block most of the attacks.

Alright. If you need me just yell. I have a few things to get ready. Feara said getting up and walking out of the door.

will do he smiled and kicked her staff up, and brought the backs on his swords to her neck."and now your be dead."

"How'd you do that?" Talla asked a bit squeakly.

Zzeey smiled and sheathed his swords."I let you settle into a comfortable rhythm and then changed things.."

"That not fair." Talla whined.

"life never is fair little one."He sighed and turned around, looking at the room."you need to always be prepared...Some things can never be expected."With this he set a globe of darkness around her, and waited for her reaction.

Talla's first reaction was to scream, but immedatily her mind switched to the time when she was in the underdark. She stayed very still briging her staff to her in a protective stance and waited.

He smiled, and slipped into the globe. quietly stand, and moving around her, testing to see if she had the sixth sense of a warrior.

Talla pivited on her right foot jabing out with her staff to the right.

Zzeey smiled and did nothing but step out of the way, wanting to see if she would second guess her self.

Talla then jabbed her staff out infront of her.

Zzeey grunted, part of him was surprised, the other part of him let her hit him."Good."He said, and lifted the globe."I think youd be cut out for this."He smiled and sheathed his blades."I think breakfast might be done."He turned and walked out of the room.

Jace was sauntering up to the house when zzeey came out."How is she?" Zzeey smiled."Gifted."

Talla didn't follow but stayed in the room.

Feara walked back into the kitchen bringing plates and glasses down off a shelf.

Zzeey turned around, and called to talla."You coming?"

Jace walked up behind feara, in a good mood."evenin!."He smiled and gave her a light kiss."Zzeey says talla is fairing well so far."

"Huh? Oh yea, I am comming." She said turning around before setting her staff on the floor and following Zzeey.

Feara jumped. "Good evening darling. Yea, she's something."

zzeey smiled."i have something for might help you out."He motioned for her to follow."Just wait till later."

Jace smiled and leaned against a counter."Im thinking of a weapons change."

Talla nodded skipped up next to him. "Okay."

Feara looked over at Jace. "Oh? Care to explain more?"

Zzeey walked in, talla trailing behind him."Smells good feara."

Jace shrugged."im a walking thinking of getting rid of a few things."

"Thanks Zzeey, ready in 5. What exactly do you want to get rid of?" Feara asked turning to Jace.

He shrugged again,"I dont thinking my hatchets.. i have a plain axe..just like one youd chop wood with.. and my tomahawks..i wanna keep those..but the hatchets an all of the throwing axes and the battle axes have too go..grandma is with im just gunna redo it all"

"Sounds like a lot." Feara said putting an arm around him and laying her head on his sholder.

He thought for a moment."eh, ill be lighter, faster, and we sell the weapons and get money for supplies."

Zzeey tapped talla on top of the head, and motioned for her to follow, as he headed up to his room to grab something.

Talla turned and followed.

"Sounds like you have it all thought out." Feara said watching him.

He nodded."mostly..but i still havent thought of the sleeping arrangements...we wopnt have a house to sleep in after tonight..were gunna have to camp."

Zzeey handed talla six turquoise anklets."These should help with your speed and balance..."

Talla took the anklets and looked at them confused.

"That was the plan." Feara responded going back to the stove.

Zzeey smiled."Undo the clasp and slip three on each foot..or ankle rather.."

Jace rolled his eyes."well yeah..but any way.. im kind of worried about talla."

Talla sat down on the floor and did what he said. "Like that?"

Feara turned and looked at Jace. "I think we all are. This isn't going to be easy."

"I know, but i know we can take care of our selves..but she cant, and she might be more than a hindrance than a help.."

Zzeey smiled."Yeah, just like that."

"We can't just leave her now Jace." Feara said choking back the tears. There was no way she was going to leave Talla behind. She wasn't going to make that mistake.

Talla got up and giggled. "Their so light."

Zzeey nodded."Yeah, and they give you near perfect balance...i dont need them, i can balance on pretty much anything."

Jace shook his head." i know, i just..dont want anything to go wrong."

"You must have been a great Weapons Master Zzeey." Talla said looking up at her mentor.

Feara turned back around grabbing Jace's hand. "Nothing will, and if it does we will all deal with it. Now will you please help me get this food to the table." She said in a shaky voice.

zzeey swallowed hard, in truth he had never made it that far."Yeah, i must have."He smiled weakly and motioned once more for her to follow."Come one now, i think the foods ready."

Jace sighed and nodded and asked."Want me to set the table?"

Talla nodded and followed.

"Yes, please." Feara replied. "And thank you." She said kissing his cheek.

Jace smiled and looked around."Wheres the plates?..And cups?"

Zzeey stepped into the dining area."Look how has found a use for the balancing anklets!"

"In the cabnet over there." Feara pointed to the cabnet to the right before picking up a huge bowel and throwing the spiced potatoes in it and taking it into the dinning room. "Very nice." She said to Zzeey and Talla.

Zzeey rolled his eyes, and sat at the table, patting the seat next to him, and looking over at lestat and aureus.

Jace walked around the table, setting the plates down for every one but lestat and himself. the cups and spoons soon followed.

Talla started dancing around the room.

Feara sat down the patatoes and went for the meat.

Zzeey smiled and watched her dance, turning to jace."So, how are we getting to this town that lestat was talking about?"

Jace grinned."Well, i know where this town is, and i am well known there. finding it wont be a problem, its losing it that will prove difficult."

Feara brought in the sasuage and took a seat. "What do you mean it will be difficult to lose?"

"Well in that town, im a wanted man, in many senses of the word..i used to be a merc and im sure to get some attention i spent alotta time in the bars and theres bound to be some trouble there."

"Oh boy. This will be one adventure." Feara said watching Talla with a raised eyebrow.

Zzeey smiled."Yes it will."He remembered the last time he and jace had been to this town, duderhurst, it ended with them getting thrown out of many taverns, and inns.

Jace grinned as well, those where the golden days, back before the had settled into the comfortable life in the tavern."its going to be somthin"

Feara smiled. All the brusies they boys had gotten. "Just promise me something, both of you.."

"Anything love."Jace smiled, zzeey shrugged."Go for it."

"No instigating or starting bar fights." Feara said sternly.

zzeey smiled."we never started fights." Jace laughed."Just finished them." Zzeey smiled even wider."Remember that time whith the two city guards?" Jace nodded."And the ladle?" The room practically shook with laughter."Oh my, it has been a while."Jace said as zzeey wiped a tear of laughter from his eye."That it has."

Feara laughed and shook her head. "Nontheless you two, we can't be kicked or chased out of every town we go to."

Aureus took a seat next to Zzeey. "I completely agree with Feara. As fun as that might have been for you, save it for an arena or an actual set match."

She looked up at Feara. "How did it go with Talla?"

Talla came and sat on Feara's right.

"According to Zzeey she did realy well." Feara replied.

Aureus wasn't sure if that was a good or bad thing, but if she continued traveling with assassins, it shouldn't probably be a good thing. That made her think of Talla's future... Would she end up being just another killer too, or would she be able to find a fun good life?
She smiled at the pretty little girl. "That's good. You enjoying it?"

"A lot. Zzeey is soo cool!" Talla said smiling.

She tried to hide a laugh. "I know he is. He'll probably teach you how to be cool like him, too."

"That would be awesome!!" Talla said happily.

Jace and zeey nodded."We will try." jace said, looking around the table. he was with the five deadliest people in the world...and he was happy.

Zzeey grinned at talla."I will try, but somethings cant be taught, they are just natural."He said, with fake arrogance, as he flipped his stark white hair over his shoulder.

Feara rolled her eyes at Zzeey. "Stuck up!" She said playfuly.

Aureus flat out hit him upside the head. "A Drow doing that just looks so wrong."

Talla just beemed with happiness.

"again, you are just jealous my dear."Zzeey laughed and looked to the food."So can we just grab from the bowls and put it on our plates?"
"Yes." Feara said laughing.

Zzeey smiled and took a few potatoes and a few sausages."This is delectabl after a few bites. Jace tied his hair back, in a white ribbon."So after we eat, you guys wanna head out?"

"I don't care." Feara said taking Talla's plate and filling it before filling her own.

"duderhurst is having their winter festival this week..its about an hours run..if we go slow."Jace looked to his friends. zzeey could keep up with him , but he wasnt sure about feara and aureus..if worst came to worst they could carry talla, or maybe even let her ride on the panther.

"I do have two horses." Feara chiped in while she ate.

Jace noded."but theres five of us..."

"You wouldn't be able to ride one of these horses, I could just conjour up another beast for you... but the rest of us can double up on them." Feara replied sitting back, her plate empty.

"I guess you could, but why cant i ride one?"

"Lets just say they are picky love." Feara said watching him.

Jace shrugged."Why cause im an undead?"He said, acting faintly insulted."Jace shut up."zzeey said, and slapped him playfully on the back of the head.

"Well, that is part of it." Feara said shaking her head.

"Well then! i didnt want to ride them anyway."

Aureus watched without comment. Jace was almost as bad as a girl...

Talla looked up and made a comment for everybody... "Jace are you a kid?"

Feara bursted out laughing.

Jace looked down at talla."More than you will ever know."

Talla looked up at Jace with curiosity.

Jace shook his head, got up from the table."Dont worry about it."Jace smiled."Are we ready?"

Zzeey leaned his head on aureus' shoulder."I think i need a shower.."

Aureus patted his head, toying with his white hair. "Talla, any plans for the rest of the morning?"

Talla shook her head.

"Yes, as soon as everyone is showered we should leave Jace." Feara said finnaly answering him as she got up.

Jace stood up as well."where are the showers?"Zzeey looked up at aureus and kissed her cheek."did you enjoy you meal?"

"Second floor, first door to your right." Feara said looking at the dirty dishes and left over food on the table.

Jace nodded and headed upstairs, leaving zzeey to help."Want some help with these?"

Feara looked at Zzeey a wicked smile comming to her face. "No thank you. I always wanted to do this part since I lived here as a kid." She said looking back at the table and snapping her hands. Dish after dish came alve and made it's way back to the kitchen to clean itself.

Talla watched from her seat facinated.

"oh thats new."Zzeey said quietly. Lestat was suddenly next to him."you have no idea."He said sarcastically.

Feara smiled. "Only the owner of the house can do that. Oh hello Lestat."

lestat grinned."Hello feara dear..this looks like it was quite the feast..who cooked?" Zzeey sighed and pulled a small pearl comb out of his pocket, and began to comb his hair.

"Well me of cource.. with the help of Zzeey." Smiles watching Talla.

Aureus watched Lestat, noticing his vanity. She wondered if he'd ever fallen into a mud puddle or a dung cart. She giggled a little, trying to hide her amusement.

She turned back to Feara and Zzeey. "And it was a very fine breakfast, hun. Thankyou."

"Your welcome."

Zzeey smiled and walked upstairs to take shower.

Feara nodded. "So when are we taking off?"




Rumble stumbled drunkenly into the streets, eye balling his surroundings. With a grunt he dove to the ground and rolled into an alley, signaling liam to follow. Their next mission was to find a tavern that looked seedy enough to allow shri with out comment.. and one with a better challange when it came to a brawl.

Liam smiled and stumbled drunkenly, "I need to drink with you more often, Rumble. You are my new drinking buddy!" Shri shook her head and lowered it in shame. "Liam," She said softly, "For a man your size you sure can't hold your liquor very well..." Liam paused for a moment staring back at her intently, "I could *Hic* I could drink you under the table young lady!" Only replying with a sigh she keeps walking.

Not bothering to mention he had a poor tolerance for someone with a vampires constitution, or what drinking a woman under the table might mean for a vampire, he jogged down the alley for a bit untill he came to a ladder."Hybrid! look.. The answer to our search will be in the lowest place of this town..and to see the lowest.. me must go to the highest.. now climb you fool!"He said as he vaulted on to the ladder, and scrambled up.

Liam pulled himself on the ladder, slowly bringing himself up it concentrating on each and every step and pull so as not to fall. With each and every step the ladder creaked a little more as it began to buckle under his weight. Finally reaching the top he peered into the horizon. His eyes did lock onto a bar in the bottom of the bowl which Dunderhurst was built upon and tapped Rumble on the shoulder and pointed to it.

Shri leaped onto the stone roof where Liam and Rumble were standing without using the ladder and stared to where Liam was pointing. She sighed as she said, "Yet another bar... You two aren't going to trash this one as well are you?"

Rumble chuckled loudly."Trash? naw.. perhaps mesefl and the hybrid did get a bit..rambunctious..but that was justified m'"He said looking at the tightly packed buildings."How to get there is the question.."

Liam nodded and looked to Rumble, "It might be quicker if you jumped on my back. Shri," Liam looked to her, "Do you think you can keep up?" Shri only answered Liams question with a simple nod. Getting down on his knees and bending over he helped Rumble onto his shoulders. "Hold on tight." He said as he dashed towards the bar.

Rumble climbed up, and scrambled onto the the big mans shoulders."WOOOOOHOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO"He yelled runkenly as he waved his arms in the air. People on the street stared in astonishment at the sight of the two drunken fools."there be nothin to see folks!"Liam said as they sped by, leaving people confused and a little frightened in their wake.

Liam kept speeding towards the bar, "Hey Rumble! Check my shirt pocket, there is an empty brew bottle in it! Throw it at the next person that stares." Shri chimed in behind them, "I Don't think that is such a good idea, Liam..."

Rumble already had the bottle in hand before shri could finish. And just as she finished speaking the sound of breaking glass was heard."Take that you armour wearing ninny!"He said, the sound of his own dwarven chain mail clinking. In the fun of the moment Rumble did not think about why an ordinary citizen would be wearing armour.. and so he couldnt deduce that the man was a town gaurd. Aware of it or not, the group had just stirred up some more trouble.

Shri gasped and sped up, "Rumble! That was a guard you just hit! Who else would be wearing armor like that??"

Rumble just stared down at her, and indicated himself and liam with a flourish of his hands."Lotsa folks girly.."

"You are not normal people from a city as this!" She sighed half heartedly.

Rumble laughed at the idea of a drowess telling him whats normal."Onwards liam, we be halfway there yet!"He said, diggin his heels in as if liam where some sort of charger.

From up ahead they heard some one shout. "Oi you there! Halt!"

Liam stopped in mid stride and skidded to a stop with his fists clenched, he hated being bossed around. He let Rumble off of his shoulders as he raced towards the guard, sobering up for a moment.

Rumble charged forward as well, running up liams back, and vaulting into the group of six gaurds."HAAAA!!!"He cried as he clothes lined the two on the right, and hopped up to head but a third in the groin.

Liam charged in after Rumble, swinging his large fist at one he sends him flinging off into a corner. He picks up the other two and bangs their heads together, throwing one over a fence into a pile of horse manure.

the group now having been dealt with sufficeintly, liam continued on dow the street heading for the tavern.

Liam frowned with disappointment, "I'm sober again, quickly! Before my vision blurs much worse we must get to the tavern!"

Shri looked around at the people who were now staring at her and growled at them before speeding to catch up to Liam and Rumble.

The doors to the tavern opened, to a riot of noise. Yelling and cursing, singing and fighting. "Well this be the place if i ever seen it!"Rumble said walking to a table in the back. Rumble signaled and angry looking waitress."Three mugs of ale.."He said happily, looking around.

Liam sat down at the table and smiled, "Just like back in my home town." He patted the chair next to him signaling Shri to sit down before a small girl caught his attention. His head tilted as he looked upon the young girl that was out of place in this tavern filled with angry drunks.

The small heavily cloaked female darted in between the bodies of the drunken horde. The thick scent of musk and sweat perfumed the dark dank hovel as she slowly made her way through the crowd. As she pushed through the room, her hood up over her head, her small hands fingered a small blade, skillfully slicing open the drunkards exposed coin purses and stealthily slipping them into her own. She smirked as she went about her task. These sloshed boob heads made picking their pockets oh so easy. They even flocked together like a bunch of dull minded sheep to make it even easier for her! Of course she felt no guilt as she sliced a hole in another purse and pocket the coins. They were practically asking for it. Suddenly, the hair on the back of her neck stood up. Her body tensed as her eyes darted around the room. Someone was watching her. Slowly she began to ease deeper into the crowds....

Rumble hadnt noticed what had caught liams eye, but instead eyed the tray og mugs the waitress had brought over."will you be payin' now or later dearies?" She asked eyeing liam and rumble, taking careful measures not to look at shri."Later ma' its time to wet me whistle."He said as he threw back his mug, and drained its contents."And keep them comming!"

Liam placed eight gold coins on the table, "I'll pay for theirs now, miss. Go buy yourself something nice. Let me know if they drink more than that. Excuse me a moment." Shri eyed Liam worriedly but nodded. If he is good enough to take her down, he could deal with any problem in this bar, if not all of them at once.

Pushing his way through the drunkened idiots Liam walked through the tavern keping his eye on the girl. Finally catching up to her and extending his hand he slips four of his coins in her small purse to make her notice.

Faster than a normal human could move, the female spun around, pressing a knife against his side as her hood flew off, exposing her white hair and almost translucent pale skin. Her icy blue eyes flash angrily as her full pink lips curved into a growl. "I do not take kindly to your fresh ways sir, no matter how drunk you may be..." She scooted closer to him, to hide the blade from the easily flustered crowd and to whisper into his ear. " I am not a whore whose services can be paid for," she growled taking the coins from her purse, "nor am I a beggar to be pitied." With that, she threw the coins at his feet and stepped back, letting the crowd's movement hide her from sight.

Rumble stood from the table and began to make his way through the crowd. He side stepped a druken idiot challenging anyone who would listen to a fight."Hey ho to the bottle i go.."He began quietly to himself."Pardon me miss."He said as he bumped into a hooded woman, a little taller than himself. He paid her no mind, as he walked up to the bar."Good sir i need a plate of your finest food."He smiled drukenly at the bar keep."Not that fine, but we have legs of mutton for three silver each..." Rumble nodded, and pulled his purse from inher his cloak, giving the man the coins."Have them brought to my table."He said, walking back through the crowd slowly, and drunkenly. singing a dwarven drinking song, his coins jingling the whole way.

Liam kept standing there silently as he pulled the blood from the girls blade back into himself healing his wound. Spitting on the person next to him he sighs and says "Children... Always snotty, and always in places they shouldn't be." Bending over and picking up his coins the person he spit on made a resounding "OI!" noise. Finally picking up the last of his coins he came up with a clenched fist into the man's jaw sending him flying into the roof. "Do not, 'oi' at me good sir." He said to the, now unconscious, man, "Let that be a lesson to you." The crowd around him cheered and spilled their drinks on him as he walked back to the table. Sitting down and picking up his mug of ale he drains it dry. "Why the hell would there be an albino kid in this kind of place?" Shri shrugged and answered, "Where I come from, why wouldn't there be?" Answering a question with a question seemed to satisfy her enough to take a sip from her mug wrinkling her nose at the concoction.

The female pulled her cloak tightly around her as the crowd jostled her to and fro. Her heart beat against her ribcage like a caged bird as she scanned her surrounding to make sure that she wasn't being followed. That had been close. After so many years of stealing and hiding, she had pretty much become a self proclaimed master of hiding in plain sight. Even though her outer features were rare and highly noticeable, it had been many a year since the last time she had been picked out of a crowd. Thank the Gods, the thick skull that had grabbed her merely thought she was another floozy, flaunting her wares to any being with lustful loins and a coin in his purse. She shivered, thinking how close she had been to getting caught, rubbing her throat as she imagined the cold sharp edge of a blade against it. Of course it would take a lot more than just a little blade to finish her off, but just because she didn't die for long, didn't mean that death still didn't hurt. She shook her head, bringing her mind back to the warm room. The sound of a heavy jingling purse caught her ear, as a man shorter than herself pushed through the crowds nearby. Clutching the cloak tightly around herself, she let her mind slip back to business mode, slipping through the crowds behind him. As she approached him, her tiny skillful hands slipped through the sleeves of her cloak, pressing the blade lightly against his coin purse till the coins fell into her hands quietly. She smirked. Jackpot.

A gnarled dwarven hand clamped down on her wrist."Oi..Whats this now?"He said, glaring at the young girl from behind a bristly red mustache."Pickin pockets? Ye sure yer pockets are deep enough to hold the trouble ye just got yerself inta?" He said smiling.

Shri shook her head and tried to chug the beverage in her mug, her face twisting into a puzzle if displeasure. "Ugh, how can you drink this stuff, Liam?" Liam shook his head in disbelief at her, "You don't like it?" Rumble's voice caught his ear. "Finish it, I will meet you outside." Walking swiftly to Rumble he shook his head, "Just take your change and sit back down, Rumble, I know this one." He said pushing the four gold coins back into her hand, "Pity? No. Beggar? No. Know how to accept a gift from a person? Once again, no." Liam paused and looked her dead in the eye, "Sex has lost it's thrill about 300 years ago for me. Now take the money and be on your way child." Running his cold hand over her fingers he shut her hand around the money and was gone in an instant, almost disappearing from the tavern. Only to be seen by the door swaying back and forth in the wind. Leaning against the side of the tavern he rolled a cigarette in patchment and lit it on the lantern outside.

Rumble looked at liam as he left, and then turned his attention to the girl."the only tavern in this damnable town that would except me and me friends, and ye drove the Hybrid out with yer petty theiverings,"He growled grumpily, hand still clamped on her wrist like a vise."Now yer to be apologizing!"He said, nearly dragging her behind him, heading to the door.

She fought against his grasp, growling, hissing and spitting as he drug her through the crowds, causing a stir in their wake. How embarrassing! Being unwillingly drug around by a pip squeak! She dug her heels into the ground but to no avail. As the dwarf pushed open the doors, she felt her heart begin to pound in her chest as visions of her past "last moments" flashed in front of her eyes. The water's surface. Flames dancing all around her. An angry middle aged man with a brick coming at her face. She closed her eyes as she felt the rush of cool air against her face, the memories dying down in her mind.

Liam's eyes caught the doors opening once again as he took a puff off of his cigarette. "Rumble, why did you bring her to me? I said my piece." His eyes turned toward the young woman, "If giving the coins back to me is even crossing your mind, do not. I know that yo are not a whore, nor are you a beggar, nor a regular woman. Keep them." Expelling the rest of the air from his lungs he takes another puff off of his cigarette. His eyes turning yellow in the dancing lamplight.

Rumble looked up at Liam."Not a refund , This'n owes ye an apology!" He said defiantly."An shes gunna give you one."

From down the street behind them a voice called out "Thats them!" Rumble looked past his tall friend, to see a large group of armed gards heading their way."Im think we should be leaving son."Rumble said, still clamped onto the girls arm.

She screeched loudly eyes wide with fear as she clawed at the hand holding her. The guards walk turned into a jog as they heard her cry. Her heart quickened. She may not have liked guards, she was a thief for goodness sakes, but in instances like the one she was in now, she'd take a night in the stocks over potential harm any day.

Rumble sighed and looked at the girl, had this been his tavern, he would have offered her a room, taken in another stray as he had done with liam and his brother."Come with us.. food and a roof, possibly adventure."He said with a sad grin."i'll only offer once."He said softly, releasing her hand.

Liam unsheathed his sword and let out an echoing roar. Shri emerged from the tavern and stared down at Rumble and the Girl. "Make up your mind fast! They come!" Shri placed a cold hand upon the woman's shoulder and looked down at her saying, "They will take you as well if you do not come."

Glancing between the guards and the group beside her, her mind raced with the decision. She didn't want to be caught with this seedy bunch. Who KNOWS what they've done? The guards might lock her up for longer than a day. She might even get years! Yet she definitely didn't want to go with them. These people seemed to be missing a few marbles. She backed up towards the street. "No... not today." With that she turned, sprinting down the dark alley as fast as her short legs could take her.

Liam sighed in frustration, "Shri, grab Rumble, we're gone!" Shri pulled Rumbledown onto her shoulder and ran for the safety of the forest as fast as she could. Liam could hear the girls footsteps as her feet pounded the cobblestone. He jumped upon the roof trying to create a diversion, but the guards were too smart for that, they split into two teams. Liam growled in anger as he picked up wooden mugs and began to hurl them at the guards coming after him. "Clunk after clunk" one by one they fell unconscious to the ground. After the last one had been hit he turned his attention to the girl. She was headed straight for a dead end! Liam exerted all of his strength into running to catch up with her flinging guards over the stone walls on either side of the small alleyway. Finally catching up to her the last guard picked her up and put a blade to her throat, "I have her now, monster!" Liam snarled at the man, "If you remove the blade from her, and let her go now I will forget you ever did that. However, if you keep her like that for very much longer, I will have your arms." The commander spat at Liam and replied with only a "Piss off!" Liam sighed and lowers his head, concentrating. Looking the commander in his eye he began to glamor him, "Why would you want to hurt the likes of her good gentleman?" Liam smiled as the guards face turns blank and he was unable to take his eyes off Liam's, "Why don't you remove the blade from her throat and let her go. Maybe you and I can go get some ale and talk things over." The officer lowered his sword and let her go and smiled and said, "I'd like that." Waiting a few seconds for the girl to get out of arms length of the guard his smile turned to a face of twisted anger, "Things, however, will not be ok. Your deepest fears are about to come true unless you run away screaming profanities in your messiah's name." The guards face became horror stricken, his eyes grew wide, his pupils small as his eyes darted about the alley way. He began to run screaming at the top of his lungs as he pushed past Liam speaking in some unknown tongue. Liam smiled at the scene then turned his attention to the girl extending a hand to her, "Are you alright?"

The guard dropped her, running away in terror. She fell to her knees, the hard pebbles and cobblestone biting into her knees bringing a sharp wince from her lips. Her throat burned where the blade had been pressed, a hot itchy prickliness tickling across her neck, like a bug crawling across her skin. She touched her throat to brush away the intruder. A cold chill went through her as her fingers felt a warm slickness. Pulling her fingers away, she saw a dark stain on her pale fingers that she knew would be a crimson color in the light. She looked up at the pale figure that towered above her, her skin white in the shadows, eyes wide with fear. It might have been that she was light headed from all the running for her life. It might have been that she was more terrified than she'd been in over 50 years, which is what she got for snooping around non humans. It might have been that she had her own blood on her hands and was in shock. Whatever the reason, she shook her head and took his hand.

Rumble dropped off of Shris shoulders."We gotta wait for Liam!"He said walking to the edge of the roof they where on, and lettling out a long low whistle."im not fer leavin him behind."He said stubbornly, crossing his arms over his barrel chest.

Shri sighed as she knelled next to Rumble, "He wanted us to leave. Besides, I am his Daughter, so to speak. He can feel me, and I him." Her eyes stared upon the face of pure hard headedness and she sighed, "Ok, if you insist." She sat next to him with her legs crossed.

Liam looked down at the girl and pulled out a handkerchief from his coat pocket handing it to her and pointing at her neck he said, "You're bleeding. Get on my back, we cannot stay here."

She pressed the white cloth against her wound, staining it with the crimson life force that covered her neck. She held it there as she reached up at took his hand, questioning her sanity the entire time.

Liam picked her up under his arm, "Hold onto me tight and close your eyes." He breathed in deep as he felt Shri's presence and ran past her, "Lets go." Shri picked Rumble up off the side of the hut and ran with Liam to the forest. Not wanting to over-exhert the girl he set her down just a few steps into the forest. Shri stopped next to him staring at the girl with curiosity. His eyes scanned the girl over before patting her on the head, "I'm off to go find some wood for our fire. Let's make camp here for the night."

The female sunk to the ground, her legs not wanting to work at that moment. The past couple hours seemed to blur together into a giant mushball. Her mind reeled as she watched them disappear into the forest, leaving her very much alone in the dark strange forest. She hugged her legs close to her body, pulling the cloak around them. Pulling the handkerchief from her neck, she winced as the dried blood stuck to her skin. She shivered and looked around her. She couldn't have found her way back into town even if she tried. The vamp had run so quickly that it she didn't even know how far away from the town they had run. They could be all the way on the other side of the world for all she knew! Off to the side, she heard a snap. Her hand immediately went to her knife. As she waited, on edge, a small rabbit hopped out from a bush. She grumbled, letting herself relax and slapping herself mentally for being so skittish. She sighed, pulling the hood up over her head, hand still fingering the blade.

Shri looked down at the girl and patted her shoulder gently, "You look like a bird without wings right now. I am Shri." She said as she extended her hand to the girl. "Do not worry about us. We may seem weird but a lot has happened to us over the last couple of days. Our house burned, our group split in two, and now some drunken idiots got us kicked out of an entire town." Shri's dark, feminine figure nearly merged with the darkness of night around her.

Liam smiled as he yelled back at her, "I am but a sober farmer, Shri. You shouldn't give me so much credit!"

She looked up as the female stepped from the darkness as if the very shadows formed her. Cautiously, she extended her hand, gripping the female's forearm in greeting. It was a standard greeting among the thieves. When such a gesture was extended, it showed that one was not carrying any knifes up one's sleeve. Sort of a passage of trust. However, it showed distrust if such an invitation was not given, but the gesture still taken. Plus is was just rude. She wouldn't have done it at all if she hadn't been so terrified and on edge, but she wasn't too sure if this group could be trusted yet. The small pale female didn't know if the travelers understood the ways of the underground, but if so... she may have just gotten herself into a lot of trouble.

Shri sat next to the girl with her legs crossed, "I know it is not often you meet my kind, young one. I am not like them anymore though. There was a grand battle between my scouting party and Liam and his friends. Liam was the one to turn me." She looked at the girl again, "I have never seen such sadness in the eyes of someone who looks so young, the distrust I am used to, but it seems loneliness has stained your soul. Could I ask what your story is?"

The young female started as if she had been hit with an invisible hand, shocked that she was so easily seen through. She immediately averted her eyes, refusing to look at the dark female any longer. Who knows what powers this woman had and what her eyes might tell her. Instead, she pulled her mandolin from her back and softly began to pluck at the strings, improvising on a well known song.

Shri laid back on the grass, leaves, and twigs with her hands folded behind her head, "I understand, trust is hard to come by." She closed her eyes and listened to the girl play her mandolin. The song was so sweet, and so heartfelt, yet saddening at the same time. By drinking Liam's blood to stay alive she became a hybrid herself, yes, but she also absorbed his memories of music. How it made him feel, how it moved him, and how it reminded him of his life. Though she had no life to speak of outside of training she couldn't help but feel the raw emotion being put into it with each pluck of the string.

Liam kept walking, sword in hand before a cloud of dim light caught his eye. There, in the dust of his spirit, standing before him was his old friend Maktiel. Crystalline wings glowing faintly amidst the darkened forest. Liam's eyes grew as his friend addressed him, "My friend..." Maktiel said in a very faint voice, "In days to come there will be a reckoning. Ready your weapons and guard your weak." Liam nodded at his old friend as Maktiel's translucent figure bobbed up and down in front of him. His friend's voice echoed again in an almost angelic fashion, "You will be called to account for all the atrocities you have committed, the unspeakable horrors you let slip through your fingers, and in turn, inadvertently set loose upon the world." Liam shook his head, "Who are they, Maktiel?" His friend's spirit could only be seen lowering his head, "They are the paladins who call themselves 'Justice's Might.' A band of devout believers in 'The light's will' who have fought many battles against the 'Heretics' and 'Purify' them. In lamen terms, they destroy anything they view as unnatural or anything that goes against the ways of the light. You, your brother, your daughter, and the necromancer that is with you are not safe. They will view your counterparts as evil for harboring you." Liam whispered softly, "Curse my luck... when will this happen?" Maktiel shook his head, "I cannot tell you that, it would be meddling too far into mortal affairs. Big man's orders." He pointed up with the words "Big man's." Liam nodded as he sheathed his sword. Maktiel spoke one last sentence before the light faded away, "I can get to the others before you and your friends do, I will warn them." Liam lowered his head and cursed to himself before walking and cutting down a tree that seemed very dry and dragging it back to the camp site. With a frown he began to chop the tree into burnable pieces of wood. "That is very beautiful." He said looking at the child before setting up a tee-pee of wood, and setting up wood in a smokestack type fashion.

Rumble closed his eyes slowly, and swayed drunkenly."Ssso..heybred..what'd the dead'n want?" He said, opening his eyes slowly, but wide.

The child plucked the last few chords of the song relaxing as she felt her heart sing out last of the words she had come to know so well. She sighed, letting the instrument fall back against her stomach. Even though so many years had passed, she still felt the same release that only music could bring her. Yet deep within, she longed to sing out and let her inner voice bring her the harmony she needed. Feeling eyes on her, she started, coming back from her thoughts. The dark woman stared at her intently as if trying to figure her out. The child immediately swallowed her thoughts,imagining a giant impenetrable wall around her mind. Hey, she might not be able to read her, but one could never be to cautious ya know?

Jace grinned widely."Why.. we can head out now."He turned his smiled to the others, zzeey nodding in agreement. Lestat just rolled his eyes."It matters not, to me..i could be there in the blink of an eye..."

Feara rolled her eyes at Lestat. "Well lets head out then." She replied cheerfuly.

Talla seemed completly obsorbed in the dishes moving to the kitchen.

Maktiel's glow eminated inside of the shield, it seems when he was but a tattoo on Fearathress' hand he absorbed enough of her dark essence to not alert the guardians of the land. Floating to the door of the manor he waited for aknowlagement from Fearathress and Jacein Natory.

Fearathress immedatily stiffined at the sence of someone being at the door. Turning she walked to the front door as it it oppened.

Maktiel's eyes met Fearathress' as he began to relay his warning, "The darkness of this place shall be shattered under the weight of the light of the grand paladin's justice. Hide your weak and steel yourselves for they come for this fouled land. Strengthen your mind, ready your magics and steady your hand, for the men of holy come seeking retribution. Your soul will find no redemption in their eyes. Liam, Shri, Rumble, and a child with a shadowed past come to make their stand with you..." Maktiel phases out only uttering one last word, "Survive..."

As Maktiel phased out she rolled her eyes. There was more to evil than evil deeds. Shaking her head, she turned as the door shut, how the being got through her sheilds she was going to find out.

Jace stood in the door way."Thats mak...always one for the melo-drama."He said with a roll of his eyes."To arms then oh mighty necromancer? or do we fly and try and meet with the others? Zzeey says hes been incontact with liam, they are about three hours run from here..and liams picked up a stray..."

Feara looked at Jace, something smelled different in the air but she didn't want anyone to knotice. "We can fly I guess. I want to check something out. I will catch up with you guys." She said smiling.

Jace nodded and headed down stairs."Cmon fols, our time here has long since passed."With in a few moments the group, minus feara , where running through the woods. Zzeey, with talla on his back, was leading the group, following directions from lestat, who was allready there. They would be apon the rest of the group with in an hour.

Lestat appeared out of nowhere beside Liam."Hello son..." He smiled widely, Looking at the group. His eyes rested on the female drow for a moment."well now... this is interesting..."

Liam looked up at Lestat and shook his head, he would try to make introductions but he knew Lestat would help himself. "It's been a while, Lestat. You missed the turning of my firstborn." His eyes slowly turned to Shri as she arose.

Standing to her feet she looked at the man who appeared out of thin air questioningly. She did not know him so she did not trust him. The only reason she had not tried to put a dagger through his throat was because Liam knew him.

Lestat nodded slowly."I thought as much..she has the look of someone with my blood..some one of noble decent with my blood anyway."He smiled and tunred to his son."You and your brother are Brawlers at heart.. this one how ever is full of grace."He looked back at the ebon skinned woman. in his thousand or so years of life , if you could call it that, he had learned the meaning of the look, and body languange of the drowess."You would never get your blade from your sheath grandaughter of mine..."

Liam looked at his fledgling and scolded her in a stern voice, "Shri, still yourself. This man is your grandfather, so to speak, he is the one that made my brother and I." Shri looked over at Liam as she calmed a little, still uneasy she introduced herself, "I am Shri'leska, it is an honor to meet you." She extended a weary hand to Lestat and brought her other hand away from her blade.

Lestat took the hand, and gave it a gentle kiss."The pleasure is mine dearheart."He glanced to the young girl sitting to the side."And who is this?"

The young girl had seen many things in her life time, so she was rarely caught by surprise. However when a man suddenly appears, seemingly from no where, not ten feet away from you, that's enough to make a war veteran start a bit. Stifling a shriek, the female covered her mouth as his eyes turned to her. Great, now more crazies! She stared at him, wondering if she played mute long enough, he'd find someone else to entertain him.

Lestat kept his gaze pinned on her,His cold penetrating stare never wavering."Speak child, you have a name do you not?"His tone was that of one who was used having people listen to him. Not really obeyed, for it wasnt a command, just they way he did things. One almost couldnt help but listen to him.

Shri would have blushed had she not been such a dark complextion; she was not used to such kind treatment. Pulling her hand back to her side she takes her seat where she had been sitting. Her thoughts shifted to why Liam had not warned her of this when he found out he turned her. Perhaps she would ask him later.

Liam stared down at the woman who had not uttered her name, only her introduction with the dagger. He wondered if now was the time where he would find out her identity. She was no ordinary girl, that was for sure. Her skill with her blades seemed like something that would take lifetimes of human training to accomplish. Yet, then again, nothing in their world was ever normal. Drows falling in love, with humans no less, every day a new challenge arose, and the angellic harbringer, Maktiel's news of overzealous knight's of the light. Things like this would have killed a mortal to hear, fortunately enough for Liam he was already dead.

Looking up the several pairs of eyes that bore holes into her, waiting for her answer. She almost cringed beneath their stare, especially the man whose power and age thrummed heavily against her skin. The hair on the back of her neck stood upright, but she refused to show her fear. Squaring her shoulders, she returned the gaze of those stern eyes with a burning look of her own. "My birth name has no significance to you, oh elder one." She snipped. "You may call me Mea Culpa, as I am now known."

Liam sighed with a smile on his face, had it not been for Lestat's blood coursing through his veins he would have smarted off to him like that several times over the years of his undeath. Besides the fact of his blood coursing through him he knew Lestat could crush him 200 ways with his hands, telekinesis was his way of being polite.

Shri looked at the child as she said in a soft motherly voice, "That is no way to speak to your elders, young one, have some respect."

Lestat narrowed his eyes in curiosity. For he new guilt.. but never had he met someone with enough of it to take it as a name. "Respect is earned not demanded."He said, never taking his eyes off of Mea."Well then.. My name is Lestat Delioncourt." he said, his french accent apearing thick and heavy for the first time in centuries."And if it pleases you, you may travel with us. To the next town or till you grow weary of my fledgling Liam."he said with a smile. Next he turned to liam."The others wuill be here shortly."

Rumble lay passed out next on the ground, snorring drunkenly.

Liam shook his head, "If that is the case she will sit here, it seems the tavern was already a place of great annoyance to her." Liam turned his eyes up to Lestat, "Who is with the others? I felt a pulse of anxiety and then it went away as if something took him by surprise."

lestat shrugged."Jace and feara and talla." He said looking at the sleeping dwarf."I never understood how a dwarven barkeep got drunk like he does."
"But i have a mission for you, travel to my estate in the west, and safe gaurd it...bikki is going through some.. troubled times.."

Liam and shri nodded and vanished into the night.

"No little one.. as i was saying. You can travel with us to the next town or till you become weary of out company." Lestat said, standing next to the sleeping rumble.

Once the gang had left Feara dond on her cloak and headed out leaving everything as is for she would be back before following her friends. Something wasn't right.

He lay in wait not far from the front gate leading into manor yard. Damin knew if he set foot in the grounds without permmision he would never hear the end of it. He watched from the top of the tree as group people left her house in a hurry and watched shortly after as his gorgous love walked out her front door with a midnight blue cloak on. A smile came to his lips as he watched her come to the gate. Chuckling he jumped down from his perch and walked to the gate. "Hello gorgeous!"

"How in the hell did you get here!?!?" Feara half screamed half squealed as she leaped over the gate and into his arms kissing him.

"It wasn't that hard my love. Once that, person, thing, what ever, created the hole in your shields I got through. I knew you would have to come out eventualy." Damin replied placing her back on her feet.

"Well we have a lot to catch up on, but we must catch up with the group, but I have to close up and place up my wards. Come on." Feara said grabing his hand, kissing him again, and draging him back through the gate which she actualy opened this time and to the house. Once they arrived back at the house she grabed her gear, weapons, and staff. Handing all the gear to Damin for him to carry and left. As they walked back through the grounds Feara stopped here and there and replaced wards and they quickly made their way to the group.

Zzeey paused for a moment, and signaled the rest of the group to halt as well."We are being followed."He lipped talla off of his back, and handed her staff to her."Take cover behind that tree."He said pointing to their left. He drew his scimitars, Feara is that you? he thought to his friend.

Jace hid behind a tree, tomohawks out and ready.

Talla took the staff and did as she was told.

Feara and Damin finnaly slowed down. Yes Zzeey. Feara replied back gribbing her loves hand tighter. "Ready to meet the gang?" She asked softly as they came into view.

"Of cource my love." He replied leaning over kissing her cheek.

Jace stepped around from his hidng spot."Feara.. youve made good time."He holsted his weapons.

"and who is this?"Zzeey asked, sheathing his scimitars.

"This is Damin, an- uh, um-"Feara stumbled.

"Old friend." Damin finished for her. "I am Damin R. Levin." He continued letting go of Feara's hand and holding it out.

Talla stuck out her head. "Can I come out?"

Jace nodded."My name is Jacein, but you can call me jace."He extended his hand to Damin.

Zzeey smiled and nodded to talla."My name is Zzeey."The drow said, as he helped talla climb onto his back."I hate to cut this short but we have friends we are to meet with.."

"Nice to meet you Jace, Zzeey. Understood, Feara mentioned something of the sort." Damin replied shaking Jace's hand. He looked at Talla and smiled at her getting a smile in return as she got on Zzeey's back.

"Lets get going then. No telling what the others are up to." Feara said taking Damin's hand once more.

Jace and Zzeey where off like a bolt from a cross bow, nearly flying through the woods, taking logs, creeks, even small boulders in a single bound.

Feara let out a small laugh as they took off after them staying about a second and a half behinde them.

Jace laughed as Zzeey over took him, wonder what talla thought of this great speed. "How you doing back there?"Jace called over his shoulder, as he sped through the trees.

Talla clung to Zzeey's back in terror. "Fast." She muttered.

Both jace and Zzeey Laughed."Im sorry little one."Zzeey said, slowing down a fraction.

Soon The group emerged at the clearing in which lestat and the others stood."Wheres liam?"jace asked, looking around.

"Else where."Lestat said cooly, and then indicated mea."This is mea...Shes joining us for a bit."

Jace smiled smoothly."im Jace, this is Zzeey and Feara and-"He continued the introductions.

Zzeey slid Talla off his back, and handed her the staff."here you go little one."

Feara and Damin arived a second later, fast enough for Damin to catch Talla before she fell. "Easy there, get your feet under you first, and take in your surroundings second." He said softly helping her to her feet.

"Pleasure to meet you Mea." Feara said smiling.

Mea nodded,she skin still prickling at the sudden appearance of more magic users. She shivered. She might not be able to do anything anyone would consider magical, but she still knew a magic user when she...umm... felt one.

Damin looked up at Mea and internaly debated if he would ask a personal question or not, not realy knowing anyone around him besides Feara but shruging he decided to ask anyway. "Are you a magic user Mea?" He was realy hopping he wasn't the only one who didn't deal with magic at all.

Mea shook her head. "I'm not a magic user by any talent or god given gifts. I am a mere minstrel, whose natural talent is nothing short of practice and a little luck." She chose her words carefully, making sure to give nothing away and not lie at the same time. Her fingers stroked her mandolin lovingly, both her greatest treasure and curse, she could never bear to loose it.

Damin clapped his hands. "Finnaly I wont be the only one who doesn't have anything to do with magic." He said cheerfuly.

Feara gave him an odd look before turning to look at Lestat. "So where do we go from here?"

Lestat ,jace, and zzeey could all three feel the latent magical qualities in the music. She may be able to fool the others but not them."Northward"Lestat said, looking at the moon, which still hung low in the sky."We should head off at once."Lestat said, looking to the others.

Mea scanned the group of people who were, now, about to leave. She felt the tiniest hint of sadness at the prospect of loosing this.... "colorful" group. It had been a while since she'd said farewell to a place or people and wanted to look back. She must have looked conflicted, but right now she didn't really care. She was trying to figure out her strange attachment to the odd group of outcasts...

Feara nodded then averted her attention to the little girl pulling out a small piece of hard tack for her to suck on, but Damin was watching Mea. "Is something wrong?" He asked her.

Jace looked to Mea as well."Your more than welcome to join."He said with a smile. Perhaps it was his bad habit of adopting strays,perhaps it was the look of confliction on her young face, or..perhaps, just was something else.

Zzeey shrugged his shoulders."Can we walk, that run just took a bit out of me."

Lestat laughed."Getting old Drow?" Zzeey just shook his head."Is that a grey hair?" Jace tried to stiffle a laugh as lestat's hand nearly went to his perfect blonde locks.

Feara laughed. "I happen to agree with Zzeey, we can't simply run all night. A nice walk will do us all good."

Talla's face brightened at the mention of walking instead of running. "Really? Slow? No more fast?" She asked in a kind of squealed.

Mea smiled, a brightness that seemed lightened the area around her like a star in the sky, on a moonless night. She looked over at the tall one named Jace, then over to the female elf, whose name she didn't know yet. "I... I would like to stay with you. At least to the next town." It's safer that way and we're all less likely to get attacked that way." She stumbled through her excuses. "That is... if it's ok." She turned to Lestat, as if asking him if she could come. He did feel the oldest of them all, and usually the eldest is the one in charge.... right?

Zzeey smiled to talla."Yes dear heart, no more fast."He smiled, and thought about talla, and the long walk ahead of them. What about a mount for the little one? something feline? he though to feara, patting the onyx figurine in his pocket.

Lestat shrugged, and waved his hands in jace's direction."This was all his idea.. i was quite comfortable in the tavern."

Jace looked to Mea,"Im sure we dont mind, but do you have any skill with a blade?"

Mea shrugged her shoulders, looking off to her mandolin before she realized it. She blinked suddenly and shook her head dragging her gaze off into the trees, pausing at a rock and plant, making it look like the pausing meant a change in thought process. "Well I'm alright with a blade. I haven't really fought much. Mostly just gutted a couple people for trying to steal my gold pieces."

Lestat laughed, a short, cynical laugh. Zzeey raised his eyesbrows in surprise."Lovely.." Jace however said nothing, they had all donethings they werent proud off, with the exception of rumble perhaps.

"Blasted hypocrite." A low Grumble voice said from behind them. Grunting with effort Rumble stood to his full four feet, leaning on his battle axe as if it where a cane."Good ta see ya."He said to the rest of the group, paying no mind to Damin, he was used to the group attracting strays.

"Well we can help you get more skiled with a blade or a bow. We are teaching Talla how to defend herself, so it won't be to bad. I am Fearathress by the way. It is a pleasure to meet you." Feara said turning and smiling at the young woman. Sounds like a good plan. She's not as scary as you are when running. Feara thought playfuly.

Talla jumped at the sound. She turned around and looked at Rumble for half a second before running to Zzeey frightned, crying.

Damin looked at the girl with a raised eyebrow.

Zzeey crouched down, and put an arm around talla."Shhh shhh dont be frightened little one. Master Rumbledown is the nicest surly dwarf you shall ever come across." Im also not a big , possibly suggly, cat either.

"Trouble... mean...hurt" Were the only audible words that came out of Talla's mouth as she burried her head in Zzeey's chest crying and shaking. She was having a flashback of her captivity.

Very true. Guwen will do her some good. Feara thought back giving Talla a concerned motherly look.

Zzeey picked up talla, stroking her hair softly, while whisper soft comforting words in his native tongue. now would be a good time do you think?

Feara watched as Talla clung to Zzeey. Yes.

Zzeey continued to try and stop the girl from crying."Talla.. i have a surprise for you."He said softly, reaching a hand into his pocket."Her name is Guen."He set the onyx figurine on the ground at their feet."Shh now, look to the cat."He said, pointing at the growing mist, which swirled around the small onyx pather, growing larger and larger, finally forming into a solid ,six undred pound mass of fur and muscle.

Her tears stopped as she watched the mist, when Guen apeared she made a suprise sound and looked at Zzeey then at the big cat infront of her. She carefuly manuvered her way out of Zzeey's arms and stood next to Guen slowly placing her hand on the back of the cats next. "Guen?" She asked.

Feara watched Talla with a beaming smile. There was nothing Guen couldn't do, they could now add, stop crying to the list.

Zzeey smiled as Guen let out a deep low purr, and began to sniff talla, first her arm , then her chest, and then lastly she put her large whiskery face infront of the girls, and sniffed some more."She likes you."Zzeey said, as the great cat licked tallas forehead.

Talla wrapped her arms around Guen's next and hugged her. "Guen, I think your my new best friend." She said into the mass of fur on Guen's neck.

Feara let out a soft laugh. "Ah yes, Guen is diffenitly the best friend you will ever have! Just ask Zzeey." Feara said to Talla relaxing at the site of Talla finnaly calming down. "Lovely girl. Where did you find her?" Damin asked taking his place next to Feara. "A story for another time love." Feara responded taking his hand.

"Oh yes, Guen is a wondeful companion, and she will be your mount for the evening."Zeey said with a grin. The large black cat glared daggers at Zzeey for a moment, but soon lowered her head and sighed. It wasnt so bad, she suppossed.

"Great.. then we shall be off."Jace said, tightening his pack straps."Are you in need of a weapon?"Jace asked Mea.

Talla climbed on the back of Guen carefuly not wanting to pull out any hair. "Guen you are very very pretty." Talla mumbled softly more to herself.

Feara smiled at Talla as she fixed her scimitar on her hip so it wasnt so loose. "Lets get to getting then." Feara agreed.

Mea nodded and pushed herself up off the ground, dusting the dirt and the odd leaf off of her dress and tattered old cloak. She picked up her instrument and, throwing the strap over her head, slung the mandolin onto her back. "Yeah. Usually I bump into some tough guy who thinks he's a bad mother licker and tries something fresh. That's what this is for." She pulled up the hem of her dress to show off the long stiletto blade, strapped just above her knee. Unfortunately, the belt, holding the sheath to her leg, must have slipped off sometime while Liam was carrying her, so the only long thing Jace was able to see was a long line of thigh. Mea quickly pulled her dress back down, the bright pink glow of her cheeks and ears standing out strongly against her pale skin and hair. " must have fallen off."

Jace smiled."Indeed..." He slipped his pack off and began to rummage through it."What do you like? knife? stabbing slicing..chopping."He said as he pulled out a meat cleaver, a half inch thick on the back side."Sword..axes?" He continued, digging through his pack, which seemed to be filled with supplies, and mostly weapons.

Feara looked at Damin. "That is why I don't carry much."

Mea's eyes grew wider with each new "toy" that Jace pulled from his pack. She always seemed to misplace blades left and right. That or someone would steal them from her. It didn't matter though since she always stole one later. (Law of the jungle yah know?) Yet, from the looks of it, Jace seemed to have collected every shiny sharp object that crossed his path since he was old enough to grab things. The plethora of weapons was mind boggling! Giving Jace the same look she gave the weird beggars that believed they were royalty, she slowly picked up a dagger similar to the one she lost. "I think I'll just stick with what I know."

Jace just smiled."Fine by me."He said, and closed the sack up."Shall we get going then?"He said, as he began to walk north. It was a few nights walk untill the next town, so they would have to make camp at least twice.

Guenhwyvar padded along with the group, sniffing damin and Mea. these where new comers, unlike the child on her back, these could pose a threat to Zzeey and her friends. They would be watched.

As Feara and Damin walked, Damin watched Guenhwyvar closely. He was a true ranger, but he had never in his life seen such a beautiful animal so big. He loved animals, I mean you can not love them in his line of work but something about her was truly diffrent and he couldn't belive he was thinking it, but truly mystical. "Zzeey, what type of animal is Guen? She isn't anything I am used to seeing, and in my line of work I have seen a lot."

Zzeey, who was in the middle of the group behind Jace and Rumble by a yard or so, smiled."Just your average run of the mill panther.." he patted Guens head, as well as tallas, as the cat padded by. She always seems to be on patrol."From the Astral realm..."

Damin raised an eyebrow. "That explains it." He replied continuing to watch the panther.

Feara rolled her eyes. "So what have you been up to oh great mighty Lestat?"

Talla was having the time of her life. She felt safe with Guen and was starting to get sleepy.

Lestat smiled at his friend."Oh nothing much.. Bikki, my lates fledgling, is having a slight mental break down. Ive sent liam and shri to deal with her."he said, waving his hand dismissivly.

Feara let out another small laugh, she was doing that a lot this night. "I think I like my way of dealing with the undead." She replied softly more to herself than anyone.

Mea walked, kinda in the middle of the group. Everyone had separated, unknowingly, into smaller groups, and she didn't really wander into any of them. Sighing, she pulled the mandolin over her shoulder and plucked a few chords, humming notes, and tuning it. It felt good to hear her voice with the instrument again, even if it was just humming. Looking over at the young one, Mea smiled, playing a few notes before walking over to her. Playing a merry tune, she grinned at the young girl. "Would you like to hear a song?"

Talla looked up and gave a sheepish grin. "Please?" She responded more as a question like answer. She heard the small notes and from that she thought it ws the most beautiful thing she had ever heard.

Jace smiled."No rumble i swear.. there will be no more add ons. and besides really since shri and liam left we have the same numbers." The dwarf grumbled. He didnt really mind the numbers, he was just grumbling out of habit."if ya say so hybrid..."

Feara was leaning on Damin, having their own conversation going on where Feara was explaing her on doings since they had last seen each other when she heard the dwarf grumbling. "I could add a few undead to those numbers if you would like more company Rumble." She said in a very necromantic voice yet still with a joking tone behinde it.

Jace smiled, but Rumble shuddered."No thanks, last time a necromancer raised any undead near me, I was fightin fer me life and me tavern for three days."

Mea glanced over to check and see if anyone was watching. Everyone was busy with their own conversations. She sighed and started to sing. "Spring is ycomen in/Loude sing cuckou!" As she sang, the air around them grew warm with the promise of summer. The wind blew lightly against their hair, bringing with it the loud song of the cuckoo bird. Mea smiled, as her fingers found the strings, and she closed her eyes, letting the words drip like honey from her lips. "Groweth seed and bloweth meed/And springth the wode now/Sing cuckou!" All around them, the woods grew thick and lush, flowers growing along the path in front of them, as the air filled with the sound of birds. " Merye sing cuckou!/Cuckou, cuckou/Wel singest thou cuckou/Ne swik thou never now!" As her song reached it's end, a cuckoo bird flew from the forest and perched upon the little girl's head. Behind them the forest stayed thick and lush in that one area, birds still singing as if Spring were alive in that little patch of forest. Mea smiled, plucking the last chords of the song. It felt good to sing again. That sweet little song was one of the few that she dared sing as long as she was under the curse. She opened her eyes to see what the little girl thought.

Jace turned about, feeling the magic in the air."that was beautiful.."He said, falling back to walk next to her."Where did you learn to play?"

Zzeey Kept his eyes on the panther, who was licker her lips at the birds. it wouldnt do for guen to scarf down a bird with the girl on her back.

Talla beemed with a huge smile as clapped her hands. "Oh that was perfect!" She attention was diverted however to Guen and she looked up and spoke to Zzeey. "I think, if her emotions are baring true and the tense up she's hungry." Talla stated mater of factly. Her being intuned to emotions and feelings still bothered her, but the fact that Guen was hungry bothered her more. "Dont you feed her Zzeey?" She asked kind of worriedly.

Zzeey smiled and nodded."ofcourse young one, or rather...she feeds herself. She hunts and eats while she is in this realm..She isnt truly hungry i think..just likes the taste of birds."

Talla's back straightned. "She can't possibly harm this innocent bird which was brought her by magic now can she?" Talla demanded.

Feara tore away from her conversation with Damin shocked. "Talla, how can you tell what Mea did was magic?"

Mea smacked herself in the head mentally. STUPID! What on earth made her think that no one in this group of MAGIC users would be able to detect her curse. She thought she was playing it safe with a merry tune sung softly where only the little girl could hear. Apparently the magic was just as detectable as if she were singing normally. She held her cloak tightly around herself. "I taught myself." She answered quickly.

Talla looked at Mea without answering Feara's question. "I'm sorry. Was I not supposted to say that?" She asked reacting off the feeling she got from Mea. It seemed being around this new woman intinsified her "gift".

Mea shook her head. "No, it's alright. It would have gotten out eventually, but I wouldn't call it magic per say. More like... a story teller. But my stories come alive."

"I heard about something like that during my- well they called it a bard. Is that what you are?" Talla asked relaxing.

"Somewhat, but I..well, I'm a little bit different." She winced remembering the fair in the little city of Eddinburg that turned into a giant orgy after a poorly chosen song from her. She'd had to run OVER the crowds, leaping from tent to tent barely escaping with her knickers.

Talla felt more than saw the cringe. "I understand. Bad past. I have one two." She replied shuddering.

Lestat scoffed softly. "We've all had a bad past. Jace was a slave, and Zzeeys family were his captors.Zzeey is banished from his home land..i am stuck here, never ton return to my home, fearas.."Lestat quickly became quiet at the look jace was giving him."the point is not to dwell on it.."

Talla looked up at Lestat. "Why are you so mean sometimes?" She asked.

Zzeey sighed."Because he has had a bad past." Lestat glared at the back of Zzeeys head."You would know wouldnt you." The ebon skinned elf stiffened but did not turn around to reply, instead he just kept walking. He moved a little faster, coming to the head of the group to converse with Rumble.

"Being nice goes a long way. One day you may wake up regreting ever being rude to someone. Even a person such as yourself must know that." Talla said softly shaking her head.

"child"lestat began slowly."i have woke apon several days during which i find myself regretting ever being...period.."

Jace came up next to Mea."i want some answers."he said softly,calmly."What other gifts do you have? And how old are you?" He asked.. expecting her to be about as old as she looked. He didnt really care for another child on this adventure.

Mea turned to him, a dark shadow over her face. "You don't always get what you want."

Jace sighed and continued in his calm tone."No..but if you try..some times you just get what you need..and I need to know , for the safety of my and me friends.."He paused for a moment."Your human.. but not normal..that much i can tell.. you have powers beyond a normal human,and you have an old soul. what are you?" He added this last part softly.

"I'm just a bard. Just a regular old bard!" She hissed.

Jace cut her off."And lestat is just a pompus fool!" he hissed back, his eyes turning a deep golden honey color.

She growled, backing down from the potential fight that loomed in the air. "I am cursed..." She finally huffed, looking down at the ground. "My songs weave spells. I can't control the nature of the spell. I don't even know what's going to happen. Romeo and Juliet could be a spell of love and everyone in the room could find true love, or everyone in the room could kill themselves, feeling the intense sadness that Juliet felt for Romeo's death. I never know."

Jace became quiet for a moment. This woman was both a danger to his friends, and her self. but she was also someone in need of help, and if he could he would find a way to undo this."Can the curse be lifted?"

She sighed, the overwhelming hopelessness of it all settling in her chest. "Only when the last of my family's name dies, can the curse be lifted. I am the last of my family, and cursed with a never ending life, the curse will never be lifted."

Jace sighed"Who would put such a curse on you?"He asked quietly. He felt he had almost taking a liking to this new girl, and beside that point, someone had done her a great wrong, and he couldnt let that go unpunished.

" After many years of trying for children, my parents made a deal with a demon called Adramalech, that their first born child have the ability to save their dying inn. Unbeknownst to them, the demon worded the deal where everyone with their family name would live with their debt. True to his word, their first born child was born with the ability to sing and play so beautifully that she would sing and play at her family's inn that people would travel across the land to hear her play in the, until then, unknown town. On the eve of her 15 birthday, a young wealthy gentleman promised to make her famous if she signed a certain document. She signed away her hopes, dreams, and her soul for her family's well being. That night, half the kingdom as well as the whole village came to hear her sing, by the beckoning and rumors of the young wealthy man. As she sang, and epic tale of Odysseus's journey through Hades, her song suddenly manifested as lost souls, sucking out the souls of everyone, killing everyone in the village and dragging their souls to hell ." She turned her head from him. Her heart ached thinking of her younger brother, Liam, and her youngest sister, Mahina, trapped forever with the terrors of the underworld. "I doubt you'll find him any time soon."

Jace laughed sadly."You dont think that this man might be the demon do you?" He asked, looking into her eyes. So much sadness and pain lay behind those eyes. She suddenly seemed much older.

She laughed bitterly. "That is something that I've known and regretted for many long lonely years."

Jace sighed."So it was then..."He shook his head. He could understand part of her pain, he had been the one who killed most of his family after he turned."You need cheering up."he said, drifting back to lestat. Leaning in close the began to speak."Are you serious?"Lestat asked. Jace nodded happily.

Mea was trapped, reliving old memories. She could still hear the screams of so many innocents as the souls ripped out their life, the dark throaty laughter of the mysterious wealthy young man as he tore the very flesh from his bones, exposing bloody meat, than bones, until a being so hideous and vile the it's very nature still left her speechless and unable to describe the ever changing writhing mass.

From the back of the group a sound peirced the night. It was low and sweet, rising and falling as gently as the rolling hills on which they traveled. soon it was followed by low, fast strumming. together the sounds made a quick cheery song, almost like folk music. Lestat grinned as the speed picked up, moving with inhuman speed. Jace followed suit, his mandolin was larger and gave a deeper tone than Mea's. He smiled as he walked through the group, singing songs of their adventures through the under dark, and of the battlews won and friends lost. Zzeey nudged mea, hoping she would play as well.

Mea didn't want to play at first, the haunting memories darkening her heart like a stain, but her soul danced with the music, making it hard to resist what she was born to do. Before she knew it, her fingers were picking out a soft harmony that slowly wove into the fast paced rhythms of the two vampires. As their melody quickened, she found her own sluggish beat speeding up, as if the two lutes' music were helping her own music up from it's knees, prodding it to dance with them. Soon, she was playing faster, the merry tune making her own fingers fly across the strings as each instrument sang out in harmony, the three "voices" taking turns dancing in their own spotlight while the other two complimented the solo melody with differing harmonies.

Talla kept her mouth shut and eventaly let the music put her to sleep on the back of guen.

Feara had listened to Mea but decided it was best if she kept her thoughts to herself for the time being. She listened to the music humming a long as she closed her eyes letting Damin lead her as their pace picked up. She was loosing herself to her thoughts and Damin didn't mind. He wrapped his arm around her waist keeping her on track, knowing that what ever she was thinking would eventaly be brought to light in due time.

The music continued on through the next few hours, as Zzeey watched the stars, and the moon dance across the sky. The thin silver cresent made its way across the sky, and was nearly setting."The sun will be up soon."he commented to the others."Then we shall set camp here."jace said as He dropped Zzeeys pack to the ground.

An hour later the camp was set, Jace and lestat hid from the coming sun in the thick canvas tents. Zzeey had dismissed Guen and layed talla down in one of the other tents."Theres seven of us and three tents.. ill take first watch..and wake talla in about an hour to begin her training."

Feara nodded. "Damin and I will take second watch. Wake us when needed." She said looking at a tent rolling her eyes. "I don't do tents. You know that." Feara said softly taking a bed roll and a blanket out of Damin's pack and walked to a tree and set up her little sleeping area before laying down and closing her eyes. Damin rolled his eyes and followed suit.

Mea looked around, mentally pairing everyone off. Alright, Lestat and Jace would, of course, be together in the heavier tent. Feara and Damin were, from the looks of it, sleeping outside. That left her, Talla, Rumble, and Zzeey with two more tents. She sighed, suddenly a little happy that Liam and Shri went off to do whatever Lestat's little errand was. It'll be that less crowded now. She lifted up the flap of the tent and crawled in with Talla. She pulled off the cloak for the first time in ages and used it as a second blanket as she curled up. She guessed that she was on third watch with Rumble since everyone else already had someone to watch with. Oh this would be interesting.

Rumble crawled into the tent , and layed down in his armor."Im warnin ya, I snore summ'in feirce!"he said with a laugh and a playful wink. Soon he was snoring away, with his arms crossed over his chest, and his axe resting in his grip.

After an hour or so Zzeey woke talla up. He had set her in the tent he was going to use, on a pallet of his cloak, and pack."Wake up lotha uss time for some breakfast and then training." he said, shaking her softly.

Talla yawned as she opened her eyes and shook her head no.

"Come on Talla, i spent thrity minutes looking for all these black berries."He said shaking her again."You need to get up and eat, and train."

Talla made a wierd noise as she turned over and met the back of Mea's back. Sighing to turned back over and sat up rubbing her eyes. "Guen?"

He smiled."Guen went home dear one, but if you wake up and do as i say, you will see her agan tonight." He knew talla would like the panther, and guen really seemed to take a liking to the child.

"Thats a threat Zzeey! But I don't care I love Guen." She said carefuly getting up as to not desturb mea.

He chuckled, and backed out of the tent."No, its a deal...theres a difference." He walked over to the center of the small semi circle thet the tents made against the forest edge."i have some berries and theres still some dried meat in the packs if you want some." He said waving a hand towards the food bag laying next her tent.

"I don't really eat meat." Talla said walking over to the bag and grabbing some berries.

Zzeey nodded."eat up then.. today after we warm up and go through defece again, im teaching you katas!?" He said with a grin.

Talla ate and shuddered. She remembered watched a weapons master train with the oldest son of the house she served during her captivity, it looked like a dance, but the wounds he recived were really bad.

"and since we dont have fearas protective magic, im using the leather covers."He added, stripping off his armor, wearing just his green undershirt."But first, im going to warm up."He said, and walked off into the field, and began to stretch.

Talla poped a few more berries in her mouth before following and stretching as well. "Were you from one of the fallen houses?" Talla asked softly.

Zzeey paused for a moment, and then continued stretching."Yes..I am of Do'Urden decent." He Crossed one arm over his chest, and then the other."But formally I was part of house baenre." He looked down at her, and the to their left, where his scimitars(already covered) and her staff lay."Why do you ask?" he said as he tossed the staff to her, and unsheathed his covered blades.

Talla coppied the stretched Zzeey did and caught her staff. "A lot of us talked about the rubble of what stood as great houses. You aren't like any drow I have ever met, and they talked about the Do'Urden Family a lot." Talla shruged. She was just remembering things was all.

"What did you talk about?"He asked, as he sent a wide sweeping slash towards her midesction. he spun slowly, bringing in another downward slash at her left shoulder.

Talla jumbed back at the sweep but brought up her staff horizontaly infront of the second downward slash. "Mostly the stories of the second son, I think it was, who exscaped to the surface. We all used that story as a since of hope of one day being free."

Zzeey nodded."It was the same for me..That man was my great uncle.."He said while performing a quick one-two stabbing combo, aiming for her chest and gut.

Talla swept her staff down verticaly to perry both, beraly doing so. "Drizzit Do' Urden, was his name wasn't it?"

Zzeey nodded, and launched himself into a leaping spin kick. The move was designed to put her back on her heels."Second boy of house Do'Urden."He said as he landed, and began a quicker set of stabs ,slashes,and every once in a while a kick or two.

It did more than but her back on her heels it also threw her off balance and she had to throw her self to the ground and roll to fend off the rest of the attacks untill she found a slight opening where she could get to her feet once more. "Yea, all our- well they all hated him. To us he was a hero, a god almost." She said a bit out of breath.

Zzeey nodded. She was progressing well. it was her second session and already she could keep up with a half of his normal speed, wich was a fourth of his actual speed."He was a hero for many, for many reasons."He said, stepping forward quickly, and hooking the badded blades under her arms at the elbows, and forced them out wide. His foot was instantly at her chest level, as if he stopped mid kick."I think we are done with defence for now. Shall we move on to offence?"

Talla nodded, stepping back before she turned and picked her staff up. "Yes, his fighting skills are legendary, I can only imagine. Watching the swordmasters only makes me wonder how much better he could have been then them."

Zzeey sood still, his scimitars in their sheaths at his sides."yes.. i often wonder that my self."He said, crossing his arms over his chest."Attack."

Talla raised an eyebrow a thousand remarks running through her head, but did as she was told. Adjusting her grip on the staff to where her hands were inches apart comfortably Talla ran at Zzeey brining her staff up diagonly before bringing it back over her sholder then down with the top of it amied at his chest.

Zzeey side stepped the first swing and just leaned left to dodge the second, which passed inches from his chest."Good good. The staff is one giant striking surface. Youre not as limited as with a blade. Now again, but you have to mean it this time!"

Talla put herself back intime and made Zzeey one of her captors. She pulled back her staff and brought it over her head and down to Zzeey sholders with as much force and power behinde it as she could muster.

Zzeey grabbed hold of the staff, and winced. It surprised him how much it actually hurt. He pulled hard on the staff and planted a foot behind hers. With a quick sweep she was on the soft turf beneath them."A direct attack will not always work. You must move like lightning and strike like thunder! Feint!"He said, wondering if she knew the meaning of the word."Misdirect.."

Talla blinked as it took a moment for Zzeey's words to get to her. "Fake." She replied feeling the ground benath her and a scratch on the palm of her left hand where she was holding on the staff so tight when it was yanked out of her hands as she fell.

he nodded"Yes..fake.". He extended a hand to her."Anger blinds you little one. With a clouded mind you cannot fight and win." He took a step back."I like the strength behind you attack, But you cannot let your anger get the better of again."

Talla nodded taking his hand and standing up taking back her staff. She put herself back to where she was but not as deep, just enough to give her something to picture. She loosened her grip on her staff and took a hand postion where the staff was held in a backwards posttion and came at Zzeey with a sweep at his legs, halfway through she flipped her wrists to hold the staff correctly and went for his right shoulder.

He smiled and dropped into a crouch. He had expected her to keep the momentum of the sweep, but move it into an upwar strike at his head."Very good!"he said as he spun behind her, still in the crouch, and put his arms under hers and up behind her head."any surface dweller would have either fallen for it, or been to slow to react."He patted her on the back of the head and let her go. He stood back again."Ok no.. go again!"He said with a smile.

For the next few hours they trained, learning bot offensive and defensive, and how to use them both together.

"Very good Lotha uss."He said, wiping sweat from his forehead. He winced once or twice with the movement. A few of tallas shots had connected..hard."You have done well for today.. soon i think, you will be able to take on any orc we come across." He sheathed his weapons and began walking towards the tents"Come lets wake the others..." 

Talla smiled very pleased. "Thank you. Im tired and my feet hurt and so does the rest of me." She said rubbing her sholders and following her teacher. She found away to use her hatred and anger to help her fight but it also made her really tired.

He nodded."I can understand,"He said with a chuckle." Feara, Damin.. wake up.. its past noon."He called to his friends sleeping under a tree."Im going to bed."He said to the others, when he say feara stir. Soon he was inside the tent sleeping peacefully, but lighty.

Feara got up streatching, helping Damin to his feet. "I'm going to back to sleep too." Talla said to Feara as she turned and entred back into her and Mea's tent, curling up into the young woman and falling fast alseep as soon as her head hit the ground. Feara smiled as she watched Talla go and turned to Damin. "Well love, if you get us some food, I will walk the camp and check out our surrounding." She said kissing him and turing and walking off, leaving Damin to go off on his own a short ways out of camp and finding some fresh berries, mint leaves, and suprisingly a wild apple tree.

Feara did her rounds placing wards around the camp site. When she returned she found brunch waiting for. The couple eat in quite. They talked about what they had missed in each others lives and who everyone was. When the sun finnaly went down Feara and Damin got to their feat. "Go get the guys up." Feara said kissing his cheek. "W-what?!? Are you trying to get me killed? I am not waking a dwarf and a vampire up! You go do it. They love you." He replied. Throwing her hands up in the air Feara laughed. "Fine. Chicken!" Damin shook his head smiling and headed to Mea's and Talla's tent. "Time to rise and shine!." Feara made her way to the other two tents. "It's after dark time to rise and shine Jace, Zzeey, lovely Rumble, Lestat." She said cheerfuly.

Zzeey and rumble both climbed out of the tent."Oi..nothing quit as nice as a night on the ground."He said sarcastically as he bent back, and several loud crack and pops came from his spine. soon the rest of the group was out of their tents."Peaceful day?"Jace asked, securing his patchwork of leather, chain, and plate armor.

"Sadly." Feara responded watching Damin emerge from the girl's tent with Talla in one arm carring her staff with the other. "Come now little one, you can't possibly expect me to think your going to attack me because I wake you up now do you." He asked rubbing his forhead where he had a red mark. "You should always be prepared. But I did say I was sorry. It was a dream." She said giving him a playful pouty look.

After the first two emerged, Mea followed, holding the bed roll, her cloak and the blanket. She rubbed her dark rimmed eyes, trying to forget the nightmares of last night and her past. She looked over at the others who must have already eaten and began to take down the tents, bundling up the nails and poles, and rolling up the canvases.

Jace sauntered over to Mea."Jerky? Apples?"He said, holding out a peaice of cloth with several peices of dried deer meat, and a few apples in the other hand."I say we head out right away."

Shocked at the generosity that Jace and everyone had showed her, Mea smiled. A true smile. One that lit up her face and showed just how pretty she was under all the dirt, hardships, and memories. She took the apple and turned that smile towards Jace. "Thank you."

Damin put Talla down and went and helped Feara finish packing up. As usual he took the bags leaving her to carry her weapons, small back which she let no one touch, and her staff. Throwing her cloak on they returned to the group.

Jace nodded."No problem you with us right now.. we arent going to let you starve."He turned to the rest,every one seemed ready."You guys ready to go?"

"Yep." Feara and Damin said in unison.

Talla shook her head and looked at Zzeey expectantly.

Zzeey smiled and called guen forth. The cat looked at talla, and then lowered her self to the ground."Climb on."zzeey said.

few minutes passed and they were treading across the gently rolling plain."So.."jace started, looking to Mea.

"What a merry little group we make."Lestat said dryly to feara."So my darling friend...tell me about this gentle man here.."He cast an icy stare over damin.

Talla petted Guen's head every now and then.

Feara rolled her eyes. "What is it you would like to know dear? How to kill him without me getting pisted off at you or who he is?" She asked giving Lestat a raised eyebrow. There was never a tell with what was going through his mind. Damin however didn't quite like the stare he got but continued scaning around him, feeling the earth and life force that was being given off from the plants and animals that lived within the plain.

Lestat smiled."Im sure if I had to kill him there would be just cause." He turned his gaze to Damin."And i assure you there would be no issue with the how.." Looking back to Feara he continued."Well why have not heard him before?"Lestat felt some what like a father figure of the group."Tell me about him." He said, not even realizing he was cutting Damin out of the conversation.

Feara looked over at her love and squeezed his hand shaking her head. "Well, I saw no reason to say anything. We were never around long enough for anyone to know. We grew up together for a time unitll I went through my training and he was forbidden to have anything to with me. He's a ranger." Feara replied, not quite sure what Lestat wanted to know. It was kind of odd.

Lestat nodded, and turned to Damin."I see..And what are your intentions with our Feara?" He asked with a smile."Theres not a jail built than can hold me..."He said with a smirk.

Zzeey sighed, lestat was truly concerned for feara. He knew The vampire didnt want anyone to hurt his friends but Zzeey himself felt that they had nothing to worry about."Be nice lestat."

Damin acutaly chuckled. "I have heard worse, belive me. My intentions are that of my own. I will however give you my solem vow that I will never bring harm against Fearathress, nor anyone of you." He replied.

"Good.."He said, and smiled to feara, before walking off to talk to Rumble.

Zzeey was walking next to talla and Guen."If we run into trouble I want you to stay out of it as best as you can. Im not saying you cant just rather you didnt."He sighed."Ok?"

Feara smiled back and wraped her left arm around Damin's waist.

Talla looked up at Zzeey and nodded. She wasn't exactly eager to fight at all.

"Tomorrow im going to teach you critical strikes.. moves to Disable your enemy quickly."He said chopping at the air with his hand."You ahve the makings of a great warrior."He said almost sadly.

Talla cocked her head. "Why do you sound sad? We are all warriors at some time in our lives. Some just never stop."

Zzeey smiled. There was so much intelligence in this little human child."How'd you get so smart?"he asked playfully. The Panther sighed happily. It had been a long time since she was out and about with out a fight on her paws.

Talla turned red. "I-I" She wasn't used to all the praise.

He Still smiled he sighed."Dont worry, this surface wolrd is different from down there. Trust me i know...But its not a bad thing to be recognized for your talents."

"But some times it can be." SHe replied softly.

Zzeey looked down at her curiously."How so?"

"If you get too recognizable you are always getting attacked one way or another." Talla said looking up at him.

"Soo..." Mea turned her blue eyes to look at Jace as he said it, the corners of her mouth turning up in a crooked smile. "A needle pulling thread?" The crooked smile grew into a full bright one, complete with dimples.

Zzeey sighed once more. He knew this way of thinking. "Its not like that up here...not always. And never amongst us."

Jace looked lost for a moment."Oh..yeah. No I was you drink?"

"But it is sometimes." Talla pressed.

Mea's gaze went down the the ground as she chewed her lip thoughtfully. "Well, it really depends. I haven't really had a lot of experience with ale, due to the whole begging bard problem, but I've had a couple people buy me a cup of ale before. It was strong but it warmed my belly and made me not hungry."

Jace nodded."Ever had dwarven whiskey?" He grinned. From a few feet behind rumble grinned and chuckled. In his pack was a small keg of the dwarven"Holy water"

"That shouldnt keep you from succeedingat something, or from excepting honest praise."Zzeey said quietly.

" Dwarven... whiskey?" The dwarf chuckled behind her, and Mea turned to give him a inquisitive glace. But getting no helpful response from the dwarf, she turned her eye to the halfbreed beside her, cocking an eyebrow at him. "Am I walking into the butt of a joke?"

A deep gravely laugh errupted behind the two."No lass, the whiskey's like liquid fire. Nothings as strong, and nothings as fine!"He finished with a laugh.

"Nothing will knock you out faster is more like it." Feara replied over her sholder.

Talla looked up at Zzeey and grabed his hand. "I am glad your on our side." She said smiling at him.

Zzeey smiled down at her, and squeezed her hand."Me too dear one." He looked off to the foreast, and squinted for a moment. Keep on gaurd friend...I feel we are being watched.
Jace nodded."What they said..." He chuckled a little bit, and stiffed the air slightly. An odd look took to his face for a moment."But yeah.. we should have a glass or two at the next town..."

Mea smiled and turned her eyes up to Jace. "I would very much enjoy that." She giggled. "As long as it's only a cup or two. I don't believe my tolerance is very high."

Feara felt a shift not just in the group but in the air and she tightned her grip on her staff.

Damin took note of the Feara's change and loosened his bow so it would fall staight down his arm in a matter of a second.

Talla looked at Zzeey. "Something wrong? Your mood shifted." She pointed out quitely so only he could hear.

Rumble laughed."No lass yer gunna want a shot er two. Two mugs'll put the hybrid down."He said with a grin. Jace chuckled and scratched his head."Hes right."

Zzeey looked down at talla with a serious face."If something happens you must do as i say."He said as he handed her staff to her."Guen will stay with you."He said softly, more to the cat than the girl.

Talla nodded. Now she understood what the change meant. She took her staff and smiled brightly at Zzeey. "I loves you Zzeey." She said once again soft enough for his ears only.

Mea wrinkled her nose. "One shot is more like it", she mumbled, scraping her tongue against her teeth as the imaginary taste flooded her mouth.

Jace laughed."Sounds like a plan."They continued to walk in silence for a moment. "I love you too Talla." He smiled For a second. Suddenly a sharp whistling sound peirced the night. Jace lestat and Zzeey turned at once."Arrows!"Lestat cried, taking one of the rusted shoddy missiles in the chest."Oh damn.."He said quietly ripping the projectile. A few more arrows flew through the air, easily spoted by lestat jace and Zzeey , who had excelent low light vision."Guen Take Talla out of range!" Zzeey Shouted, dancing between falling arrows.

Talla clung to Guen for dear life.

Being elves Damin and Feara could see the arrows as well. Feara drew her scimitar with her right hand, as she ran and doged arrows. Damin cursed himself for not keeping better eye and let his bow drop to his hand and yanked three arrows out of his quiver, knocking them, and letting them fly back and the direction in which the assailing arrows were comming from.

Mea's eyes grew wide in horror. They were being attacked! Her heart raced in a panic, unable to move from sheer terror. A fight?! She was of NO use in a fight. The only weapon she had was a little dagger, that was better for sneaky up close and personal shanking, and her voice, but hell, is she used that, it could end up turning on her friends. She stood there, unable to do anything except try not to end up as a hostage or worse.

An arrow pinged off od jaces chest plate."We need the out of the trees!" Jace yelled to the others. Zzeey nodded.Soon a dozen or so forms lit up in blueish purple faerie fire. The trick worked, fearing the flames the creatures scrambled, about half of them came out of the trees, and stopped, staring at the group. The fire dissapated on a few, and they charged. Jace, Lestat, Rumble, and Zzeey charged forward to meet them. With in moments the fire was gone as Zzeey lost cocentration. Soon more beings emerged from the trees. "Orcs!"Lestat cried, slicing through one of them with his black KD sword."Perks of being a general."He said to himself. There seemed to be twenty or so of them, weilding Crude swords,axes,spears and clubs. A few of them even had sheilds,wooden and a few steel sheilds stolen from their past victims.

Feara shouted out a spell that summoned 10 undead and sent them after orcs, before charging herself. Damin let another three more arrows fly taking down an orc before grabing Mea around the waist and pulling her away from the fight in a mad dash. "Don't freeze! Run after Guen and keep your head down and dont stop!" He half shouted at her.

Suddenly Mea was up on her feet and flying across the ground. She looked up at the serious face of Damin and winced. She'd frozen up and put herself and Damin at risk. She nodded and ran after Talla and Guen. At least if she were further from the fight, the attacks would be up close and personal.

Jace and Rumble worked in unison, each chopping with their great battle axes. Rumble chopped through a particulalry pig faced orc's knees, and then down into its chest as it hit the ground. Howling in delight the thick chested dwarf leapt apon another victim. Jace used his great battle axe to blast rhough sheilds, sheild arms, and in a few cases, rib cages.

Zzeey Dashed into battle, a blur of cloak, blades, and stark white hair. Three spearmen stopped to stare at the drow."Dark elf!" One of them screamed, and thrust his rusted crooked spear forward."I have a name you know!"he said with a laugh and he took the head of the spear off. With three quick steps and a slash the spear weilders own head soon followed. The other two squeeled in fear, but both were soon silinced as Zzeey dispatched them both as well.

Lestat was unseen, but he could be heared cackaling in his mad, terrible way. Random orcs would vanish up into the trees, screaming, only to be dropped back down a few moments later...oddly silent.

Damin took cover by a tree and started unleashing hell with his arrows taking down a orc here and there.

Feara joined her friends with the slaughter next to her undead. "Kill the Necromancer!" Came a shout. She let out a loud laugh before chopping off the head of the one that made the "command". "Shut up." She said, as she turned and watched one of her creatured destroyed. "Damn't! You will pay for that!" She growled at the orc that cut it down turning and parrying the sword with her staff and gutting it with her scimitar.

Zzeey was dealing with a particularly troublsome orc. "Whered you get the armor?"Zzey asked, dodging a clumsy, but feirce , chop from a severly trusted out sword."I take."the Orc said with a gap toothed grin. Zzeey nodded."Ofcourse, but from who?" he asked, Dispatching a less armored orc as it ran by."Mans..I kill mans and take shiny plate." The orc snarled, and lunged at Zzeey. "Like this?"Zzeey asked as he stepped around the thrust, spun behind the orc and slipped his scimitar through the panels of rusted armor.

Rumble waded amongst the attackers, send his axe through legs, into backs,and heads. Jace stood a few feet to the left, dispatching orc after orc
with deadly speed.

A hundred feet up lestat stood, holding an orc in his telepathic grip."You are raiders."Lestat said flatly, and the poor orc nodded."Do you have a camp near here?"The creature whimpered and nodded, pointing off to the west. "Do you have any people there..any humans?" Lestat said, one eyebrow raised high onto his forehead. The orc shook his head."No no mans!"Lestat nodded, and flung the creature off towards the west. Perhaps he will survive the fall perhaps not, lestat thought to himself.

Feara teamed up with her undead killing off three more orcs. As Damin let off another volly of deadly arrows killing two orcs himself.

Off across the feild two dark forms approached."Hello girlies!" Croaked one of them."We eats the little one? we takes the big one back."One of them said quietly licking his lips at talla and Mea. Guen growled low, and took Talla a few steps back.

Talla looked at the two forms. "I don't taste very good." She said gripping her staff, ready for use.

"Sticks no good , we have swords!"The orc said, puffing his chest out. He took a step forward.The jagged and rusted blade was hardly sharp enough to cut bread. But if he swung it hard enough it would do damage, and result in a nasty infection.

Mea screeched, spinning around to face the two Orcs that were now behind her. She pulled out the tiny blade Jace had given her holding it with both hands, pointing it at the orcs. "S-stay back!" She warned, her hands shaking as she held the dagger.

Tall used this distraction to jump off Guen's back and using her staff as a bat she put all the force she had behinde the swing at the closest orc's neck, breaking a bone sending it's shattering peices into the main attery.

The first orc stumbled back a bit."Uh.."He mumbled softly. He probably would have said something else had he not been burried under six hundred pounds of panther.

The second orc dropped to the grounds, clutching his head. He let out a horrible yelp, and swung his club at talla, who was just with in reach.

Talla brought her staff up in time to jump back and miss most of the club, or show she thought untill she felt something hard hit the side of her cheek. She heard the crunch of bone as it broke and the taste of blood in her mouth as she flew back two feet landing on her back.

Mea stood there, still holding the blade. Her jaw fell in shock. She watched the panther tear into the orc, chunks flying everywhere. She shrieked as the orc caught the side of Talla's face with his club, sending her flying. "Talla!" She screamed at the girl's motionless body. Mind racing with fury, Mea screamed at the orc, launching herself onto his back. Still screaming, she raised the blade over her head and brought it down, piercing the orc's skin and burying it down into it's spine. As tears streamed down her cheeks, she pulled the blade out, bringing it down over and over again, feeling the grind of the bone against the blade as blood and meatier bits splattered against her face.

The Orcs howled in pain, and fell to the ground. His desperate struggles soon turned to violent twitches. His dying screams soon gave way to horrible gurgles and gasps. soon the creature was both still and silent, with guen looking on for a second, before walking to talla, sniffing the little girl who lay limp and bleeding.

Feara heard the blood curling screams. Zzeey, Talla... she thought engaging another orc. He carried a crude club which made her work easier. He was slow and uncordinated, she used her staff to bring his club out wide and stabbed with her scimitar straight into his heart.

Damin let go three arrows as the screams hit his ears and he bearly missed Lestat as he let another arrow loose before turning and taking off toward the screams.

Zzeey sped past Damin, wide eyed and heart beating wildly. He came to the gruesome mess in seconds."Talla.."He said quietly, dropping to his knees. The sounds of battle faded away, all he could hear was the thudding boom of his own heart. he gently slipped a his arms under her, and lifted her up,taking care to support her head."Come geun.."He said quietly, obviously shaken. Slowly he walked off to the others. the sounds of battle had fallen,as had the orcs."Feara.." Zzeey said, looking too his frend, tears welling in his eyes.

Feara was dismissing the two surviving undead when she turned around and saw Talla then Zzeey. "Zzeey, I am not a healer. I do black magic, not white." She said softly keeping grips on her emotions. Damin had followed Zzeey to where Talla, Mae and Guen were. "Mea, are you ok? He asked staying back waiting with an outstretched hand for her to take.

Big hot tears fell down her pale cheeks as she walked behind everyone. Her heart, heavy with guilt, ached as she saw Talla's limp bloody hand hanging down as Zzeey carried her to the group. She could barely see Damin drop back from the group through her blurred vision. She sniffled. "I- I couldn't stop them. They attacked us but I froze so Talla hit one with her staff and then Guen attacked the other but then he hit Talla with it and... and..." Her throat tightened as the tears spilled over.

Damin put an arm around her sholder giving her a big hug. "It is ok. You did the best you could. It will be ok." He said trying to be comforting.

Zzeey stared down at talla wishing he had a free hand to wipe the blood away."Dont worry lotha uss it will be ok.."he said. What are we going to do Feara?

Jace Lestat and rumble all stood off to the side talking quietly amongst theirselves."Theres a town, a few miles from here..."Lestat started."I could take her there. Theres a healer that owes me a...favor." He said, more concern than zzeey had though possible shwoing in his voice.

"I can transport us all there in a matter of seconds..." Feara said letting her voice die off. The spell for some many people would drain her for days but she couldn't risk loosing Tala, Lestat could get here there fast, but she feared not fast enough. As a necromancer she could feel death; Talla was loosing a lot of blood for a little girl. "Lestat, imagine the place in your mind very clearly."

Feara sheathed her sword and planted her feet firmly on the ground with her staff resting in the middle. Once everyone had gathered around her she began to chant. As the chanting got louder everything began to fade and speed up aroud them. Seconds later they were in the town Lestat had described in his mind. Feara stagared as her all her energy left her, but leaning on her staff heavily she stayed up right. "We will follow you." She said almost unadibly to Lestat who knew of the healer.

A few minutes later the group arived at the door of a well known healer."Who is it?" Inquired a voice behind the door."We need your help!"Zzeey said in a panic filled voice. The door opened to reveal an older man wearing a a dark grey robe."Oh my..yes come in come in at once!"He said after seeing talla.

Everyone shuffled through the door after the man who led them down a hall into a great room. "Only two may come with the child." The man said heading toward an opened door to the left wall of the room. It was quite clear those two would be Zzeey and Feara, for the were the ones on the man's heals which left everyone else to stay in the great room. The man lead them into the room shutting the door. "Lay her on the bed there." He said pointing to the child size bed. The room was low lit but it was clear that was the only bed in the room, the walls were covered with shelves full of potions and books, and one great window with the curtians closed.

Zzeey nodded, and laid the tiny girl down on the bed. He kneeled next to the bed and took the little girls hand in his."Can you help her?" He asked, looking up at the healer.

The man put a hand to Talla's head then to her cheek. The moment he touched her cheek her body jerked. "Yes. I will be able to heal her, however, it will take time for her body to recover the amount of blood she has lost." He responded turning and walking over to a shelf and pulling off herbs and salves. "There is more to this child however than she knows." He said as he pulled things.

Feara stood in the corner closet to Talla and Zzeey. She could taste the white magic and it didn't taste too good.

Zzeey smiled down at Talla's little body."Yeah..i know."He looked to Feara. Are you ok?

Feara looked at Zzeey, she looked like she had age a thousand years. Lets just get out of here. I need rest and the taste of white magic sets me at unease. She replied.

The healer walked over to the bed placing things down and opening Talla's mouth. He placed herbs under her tounge and between her teeth. He rubbed salves on her cheeks and on her neck. Then he opened a book and began to chant as he held his right hand over her cheek and left over her heart.

Zzeey sighed."Will she be able to speak? to eat, drink?"He had no idea of the extent of this mans powers.

"Yes." Feara answered softly.

The healer chanted for a full ten minutes when he finnaly pulled his hands away and the low glow that had apeared half way through his chant had disapeared. "Call her to you." He said to Zzeey.

Zzeey took a deep breath."Talla?"He said quietly."Time to get up Lotha uss..."

Talla's eyes fluttered. She had been on the edge, she was there ready to take the goddess hand. "Zzeey." She said crogily trying to sit up but finding she had no strength to.

"She will be weak for a few days. I suggest you don't move on untill she can keep food down and walk." The healer said watching Talla intently.

Zzeey nodded, and looked down at the little girl."Shh dont speak were very brave, im proud of you little one." He gave her a smile."Can we leave? Lestat said that he would square the debt with you."

The healer nodded.

Feara moved to Zzeey's side as he lifted Talla up.

Zzeey nodded to the healer."Thank you.."He said softly, looking down at the little girl.

Jace sighed, and ran a hand through his hair."He can fix her right?"He asked. He had grown a little attached to the girl over the past few days.

Damin looked at Jace. "It is just a physical wound. She should be fine." He replied forcing hope in to his tone.

Jace nodded."I hope so."

Rumble sat down and took his pack off."Drink?" He said, pulling out his mini keg and a Metal mug."Theres only one..we'd haveta share."He said filling the mug , taking a sip and passing it around."Thanks."Jace said taking a gulp, and passing it to Damin."Mea ..want some?"

Damin took a swig and passed it to Mea.

Mea took the metal mug into her hands. The dark amber liquid inside lapped at the sides of the mug, perfuming the air with a thick sweet scent. She lifted the mug to her lips, tilting the cup so the cold beverage spilled into her awaiting mouth. The bitter sweetness flowed across her tongue, igniting her taste buds. Her nose and brow wrinkled as, she swallowed the harsh liquid like a burning fire sliding down her throat. She turned to the dwarf, passing him the mug. "That's.... quite a drink you have there."

Rumble laughed quietly."Drink of the dwarven gods." He looked down at the mug and downed the rest."Liquid fire.."He said quietly.

Mea looked down at her hands, the warm liquid burning in the pit of her stomach. "D... do you think... Talla...?" She couldn't bring herself to finish her sentence. " she going... to...?"

Jace shook his head."I doubt it.. people in our group dont die.. the just start to smell weird."He said casting a glance at Rumble.

"OI!"He said indignantly, casually sniffing his armpits."I smell like a dwarf should!"

Mea smiled sadly, looking over at Rumble. "I just..... I just couldn't bear to see her hurt." She glanced up at Jace. "You know?"

Jace nodded sadly. In his three hundred some odd years he had seen many fall before their time. "How did it happen?"He asked, looking down at Mea."I mean..what happened."

"We were trying to get out of the line of fire, and some orcs caught us from behind and attacked us." Her hands wrung the cloth of her dress nervously. "Guean and Talla immediately jumped them but I..... I froze up."

Jace sighed, and put his heavy calloused hand on her shoulder."They've had training..Guens a natural predator.. You cant blame yourself.. anyone would have done it."He said, memories of how he hid from the attackers that raided his village danced in his eyes."Dont let it get to you."

Zzeey strode into the room with the others, carrying Talla in one arm."We need a room for a while..Shes not fit for travel."He said, walking out through the door, beginning his search for an inn.

Damin stood when Zzeey strode into the room followed by Feara. He quickly went to Feara's side putting an arm around her waist so she could lean on him as they follwed Zzeey out.

Mea put her hand on top of Jace's and sighed, giving it a squeeze before she took it off. "It's not always that easy to forgive yourself." Her head jerked around as she heard footsteps. Zzeey came out, holding Talla, and Mea's heart clenched. Even though the major wounds were healed and the blood was gone, the little girl looked so pale. Mea followed behind Zzeey as he walked out the front door.

The rest of the group followed suit. Their wanderings soon brought them to a shady little hole in the wall. "We need a room for a while."Jace said to the inkeep as the stepped inside. "We can pay you good money." he said at the tentative look the inn keep gave Zzeey. "What's happened to the child?" He asked, looking at Talla with mild concern."Orcs.."The drow said, sighing."We need a room please.." Zzeey added with a sigh, shifting his weight.

A little while later the group was upstairs."Two rooms.. boys in one, girls in the other." Jace said, then added with a grin." may sleep where you like." Lestat chuckled quietly, looking at the two rooms side by side."I dont trust these sleeping in the closet."he said, walking into the room on the left. Jace rumble and Zzeey soon followed. Rumble claimed the floor, jace and Zzeey claimed one of the other two beds each.

Damin rolled his eyes smiling. He helped see Talla to bed and made sure Feara was alright before closing the door to the girls room and going into the guys. Just like Feara he didn't sleep exactly, it was more of just a few hours of meditation. Quitely shutting the door behinde him Damin put his back against the door, so if anyone tried to come in he would know, and realeased himself into his meditation.

Feara looked around the room before taking a seat next to Talla's bed. "Rest Talla." She said softly covering the girl up and humming her to sleep. Once she was asleep Feara looked at Mea. "Are you ok?"

Mea smiled softly at Talla as Feara spoke. "I'm just a little shaken." She brushed the girl's hair out of her face. " I though we'd lost her for a second there."

Feara watched Mea, she had grown very attatched to the child like they all had. But she didn't see the potential her and Zzeey saw, lossing Talla or the mere thought had hit them all really hard. Feara stood and put an arm around the young woman's sholder. "We all did, but she is strong, just like you. If she were herself right now she would tell you it's all a learning experince. You shoudn't dwell, but learn from it. I think you have made a strong bond with her. From what you describe as to what happened, Talla was protecting you." Feara replied softly.

Mea leaned her head against the taller woman's shoulder. " I just feel so useless. I may not have been the best thief in the world, but as a bard, I made living easy enough, so I didn't really need to worry about stealing much or hurting anyone." She rubbed her arm trying to warm the chill that wasn't going away. " But you guys live one the entirely opposite side of life. While I've been with you guys, I've been more terrified and scared for my life than I've felt in a long time." She kept her eyes locked on the ground, unable to look Feara in the eyes. "I'm completely useless. I have no skills that could help you. I can't fight and I can barely open a jar, let alone pick up one of those heavy swords. My tracking abilities are zilch. I have no helpful talents at all. The only talent I have comes from a curse and I can't even control it!"

Feara led Mea to the other bed and sat her down taking a seat next to her. "My dear, we do not like to kill. We have all come from differnt backgrounds, but times are changing, even you can feel that. If you want to learn to fight we can teach you. If you would rather learn to just defend yourself and stay out of fights we can do that to. We are not forcing you to live our lifestyle. Hell we would all prefer if Talla would be a child and not be who she was born to be. Your curse is only a curse because you choose it to be." Feara placed a finger under Mea's chin and lifted her head up so she could look her in the eye. "A curse is only a curse as long as you belive and fuel it. You can defeat this and over come it. You can control it. A Curse is evil magic only fuled by a persons fear and unwillingness to belive she can controll it. A curse can very much well be turned into a gift."

"But.." Mea started, "how?" She wrung her hands nervously in her lap. "How do I make it do what I want without someone getting hurt? You, more than most, should know about equal exchange." Mea quoted, from a dying drunken old homeless man whom she stayed with till the final hour. He'd been the only person who'd ever understood her plight.

"The power behinde the curse is fear. Yes there is equal exchange as long as you let the curse control you. The person that put the curse on you is dead right?" Feara asked.

Several silent seconds passed as Mea sat, staring at the taller female, unable to answer. Finally, she turned her gaze to the window, staring out to the trees of the forest visible, just above the city line. "No... he's still out there. Watching me somehow, I know it. I'm the ace up his sleeve."

Feara nodded. "That is what is fueling your curse; your fear of him. Do you want me to find him?" She replied watching Mea.

Mea turned, shocked, to Feara. "No! He's a demon! A monster! If you attack him, he won't stop till your soul is his." She hung her head. "He put this curse on me. I don't know how much under his control the curse actually is. For all I know, he could use my curse to hurt you." She paused."I.. I don't want you hurt."

Feara rasied an eyebrow. "My dear, I have no soul for the taking, it has already been took. I could try to find if you would like my dear. He is wielding black magic, I also wield black magic."

She shivered. "But he is the very essence of black magic. Sometimes I believe that he was born from the death magic of a million black mages."

Feara gave her a reasuring smile. "You will always be hendered by this "curse" unless you can distuish this flame. We can help. I just want you to know that."

Mea sighed, standing up and moving over to the empty bed. "I thank you for offering, but I'd rather you not. It's something that I've lived with my whole life, something I was born with. I'm used to it." She crawled underneath the sheets and turned to face Feara. "Get some sleep necromancer. Talla needs you to stay in good health."

Feara smiled and nodded, they would be here for a few days. Once she had her strength back she would do the oppostie and Mea would never know. Feara waited untill Mea was fast asleep and put the normal wards up. No one would be able to scry upon them or cast magic at them. Sighing she took a seat on the floor once more next to Talla's bed. Taking up the child's hand she finnaly let herself go into meditation.

Jace sighed, laying with his hands behind his head."Zzeey what do you think of that Mea girl?" Zzeey scoffed."What really? well I guess she looks alright for a malnurished human..not that I'm one to talk, being so attached to Aureus..but atleast she looks healthy."Zzeey said with a laugh."No im serious..I think she looks rather nice..."

The next night, just after sunrise, jace sat up bolt right, looking around the room...things had seemed to have gone peacefully the previous day. Zzeey and rumble where already up, and armored, leaving jace little choice but to do the same."I'll be down stairs if anyone needs me."He said, climbing out through the window, not wanting to disturb Damin.

Talla had slept all day, which left Feara meditating all day as well. Talla began to stir as the sun set. "Well hello there princess." Feara said letting the childs hand go as she woke up. "How do you feel?"

"Hungry." Talla responded slowly sitting up.

Damin came around seconds after Jace left. Stretching as he stood he looked around. "Hello."

Zzeey smiled." well?" He asked, slipping his sword belt on. Rumble sat on the bed, Sharpening his axe."So we're to be stuck in this ton then..."

"Well enough." Damin replied smiling as he looked at the dwarf. "Unless you would rather carry Talla and put her life at more risk then no we aren't."

The barrelchested dwarf hopped off the bed, glaring up at the tall elf."Im not complainin, just wishin things had turned out differnt thats all. "He said,and went back to the bed to sharpen his axe.

Zzeey stood and headed towards the door."Im going to go check on talla." He said quietly slipping out of the bedroom.

Damin looked at the Dwarf. "We all do. Sorry, I am just on edge." Damin said sighing and running a hand through his hair.

"Bah.."the gruff dwarf waved him off and continure to sharpen his axe, only this time the other head.

Zzeey knocked on the girls door softly."Anyone up?"he asked out in the hallway.

"Zzeey!" Talla squealed.

"Come in Zzeey." Feara replied from her spot on the floor.

Mea rolled over in her sleep, pulling the covers over her head.

Zzeey stepped in smiling."Hey there. how are you feeling?"He asked sitting on her bed. "You feeling better?"

Talla nodded smiling up at her teacher. "Yes. I am hungry."

Feara looked over at Mea and rolled her eyes.

"Are you you think you can chew?"He asked, concern evident in his eyes.

Talla shrugged. "I don't know but I am hungry."

Zzeey smiled."Im going to go see if I can get you some soup."He said as he got up to leave.

"Ok." Talla said smiling.

Feara got up as well. "I'll go down with you Zzeey." She said softly.

Zzeey nodded."You are most welcome to my dear."He said with a smile, holding out his arm.

Feara took Zzeey's arm. "We will be back shortly Talla. Stay in bed and try not to go anywhere." Feara said as they walked out of the room.

Mea groaned and rolled over as she heard the door close. Giving up on any hopes of sleeping any longer, she sighed and threw the covers down. She glanced over at the now awake Talla and sat up. "Talla! You're... you're all better!" She stammered.

Talla smiled at Mea. "Duh!" She squealed.

Mea smiled and crawled off her bed, moving over to Talla's to sit. "Look," she said taking Talla's hand in hers, "I'm truly sorry for what happened and I'm going to try my best to make sure that never happens again."

Talla leaned forward and huged Mea. "It happened. Nothing you could have done would have stoped it. It was meant to be." Talla said kissing her cheek.

Mea smiled back at Talla, hugging the small girl. She reminded her so much of her younger sister. So sweet and easily overlooking of one's flaws, opting to see the good in everyone instead. Mea's stomach took that opportunity to interrupt their sweet moment by letting out a demanding growl. Mea grinned sheepishly at Talla. "Eh..heh heh. I'm gonna go grab some food."

"You should." Talla said letting Mea go as there was a knock on the door.

Below in the tavern area, Jace sat at a table with his back to the wall, Strumming his mandolin lightly. The seemingly random notes soon came together as he played them all at once. It was a slow soothing song his father had played for him and Liam when they were but small children. As the music played on his mind went back in time, to his mother and father, the small animal skin tent which sat in a oblong dome shape in the woods. The play fights he and Liam would get into, and their sister Sonja.A smile crossed his lips as he remembered the first time he went on a hunt with his father and older brother, the first time he had done manythings with his family. It was the first time in a while that happy memories came to him of his own accord. And so he sat and played, letting the memories come, and enjoying every minute of it.

After a few moments, jace paused realizing that a short blonde serving maid was standing by his table."That was very nice..umm..would you like something? Food..drink?" She asked, looked at his bare table.."yes.. Id like a pitcher of you best wine, and two glasses please."He said smiling to the woman."Of course..I shall return in just a few moments." Jace nodded as she hurried off towards the bar.

Zzeey smiled as he spotted Jace."Hey.. do you have any soup?"He asked the woman behind the counter. She gave a startled expression as she turned around.Uh..uh.." zzeey sighed."Feara, would you take this for me? im going to talk to Jace."He said, strutting across the room to his friend. People could be so ignorant some times.

Feara nodded and waited for the soup. The woman came back carrying a bowel of what looked like beef stew. "Thank you." Feara said placing two gold coins on the counter before turning and taking the bowel up to Talla.

Jace smiled up at his dark skinned friend."Hows the little one?" Zzeey smiled."Hungry..Whats with the cups?"He asked indicating the empty glasses on the table."In case anyone wishes to join me.." Jace said grinning."Oh? like who?" Zzeey asked smiling widely."Oh just any one.."

Feara knocked on the door before entering. "Well hello Mea. Sleep well?" Feara asked walking over and handing the bowel of soup to Talla, who took it graciously before starting to eat.

Zzeey stepped in shortly after Feara."Is it good little one?" He asked sitting on the empty bed."Mea..jace is downstairs if you wanna have a drink..or some food, and don't,"He said putting a hand up."Don't worry about cost, we have some what of a treasury..."He said smiling.

Mea blushed lightly at the mention of Jace. "Ah, well that's awfully nice of him." She slipped off of Talla's bed, being careful not to knock into her and make her spill her soup, and scampered over to the door. "I was gonna go get some food anyway." She reached for the door handle, but hesitated before opening it up. Turning quickly over to the metal dish on the table, she picked it up, using it to inspect her current state. Satisfied with how she looked, she smiled and slipped out of the room.

Talla looked up at Zzeey and smiled. "Very." She said finishing it off.

Feara raised an eyebrow as Mea left laughing softly. "I think we may have a new couple amoung us soon." Feara said laughing.

"Thats good.. after what happened with Reo he could use something like that.." Zzeey said smiling."Im glad you like it little one.." He smiled crossing his arms over his chest, watching her eat happily.

Feara nodded. "Do you mind if I use your room to cast some spells? I don't want to do them here, I don't want it interfering with the spells the healer casted on Talla." Feara asked.

"Of course, bu you'll have to kick the other three out."He said nodding."Talla.. how do you feel? " He asked, wanting to know if she could atleast walk.

"I feel great!" Talla said setting the empty bowel down next to her.

Feara smiled and nodded leaving the room and knocking on the guys.

"Come in." Damin replied.

Smiling Feara walked in. "Rumble Lestat, you two are being evicted from the room. I need to cast some spells and my room is still being used." Feara said.

Jace continued to play his mandolin, leaning back in his chair with his eyes closed. With a heavy thud his booted feet crossed over each other on top of the table. With a happy sigh, he plucked away, smiling softly.

Mea paused at the bottom of the stairs as the softly played music drifted over to her. Jace was sitting at his table, idly plucking the strings on his mandolin, as he, with his feet crossed on the table, leaned back in his chair, relaxing. He had such a peaceful expression on his face... Mea blushed, and looked down at the floor, willing her embarrassment to go away. Once the blush was gone, she walked slowly over to the table, slipping into the chair across from him quietly, so as not to disturb him.

After a few minutes the song came to a slow end. Slowly opening his eyes jace blushed."Oh..hi. I didnt hear you sit down..drink?"he asked picking up the pitcher."Sethian..well Sethian dregs.. but its still good."

et tavern pt 4

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2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: we're leap frogging the rooms...

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: lol yes

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: hmmm i think it is time to kick rummble out of his room :P

2010-02-02 [Gadget]: YES!

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: why?!?!?!

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: lol cuz feara can and cuz the dwarf wont stay in the same room as a necromancer who will be casting spells lol.. well if he is a smart dwarf. lol

2010-02-02 [Gadget]: happy 11:11

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: if you say so..

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: thanks babe

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: ok so im editing some things right.. and date.. as far as i know.. its happened five times.. three of them in 08...

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: ???

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: sean blow ups/leaving angrily/character deaths..

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: ah

2010-02-02 [Gadget]: XD drama llama

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: dur

2010-02-02 [Gadget]: *Dies laughing* XD

"I feel great!" Talla said smiling, emptying her bowels next to the bed."

Now you can see how I initially read it.

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: lol wow lol now i can’t stop laughing gosh

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: <img:44166_1164144892.gif>omigawd, i gotta pee...thats hilarious

2010-02-02 [Fearathress]: yes it is lol

2010-02-02 [Gadget]: Laugh at my inability to read. XD I guess that's what I get for scanning.

2010-02-02 [Darth Jacein]: moving to another wiki page guys...

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