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Town Center: stay

Icarus Essair on Dec 09, 2018, 05:45 PM
Blink. Well that wasn't actually what he meant. On the other hand, Icarus didn't really want to try and explain that and honestly maybe it wasn't such a bad thing. If she could keep it in her head for something as simple as hugging, then it should be easy enough for her to make sure to mentally apply it to the actually important things, too. "Exactly." After a moment with a small nod. It was easier and less embarrassing than trying to point out what he'd actually meant.

Icarus turned immediately at the sound of Thana's collapse - but he wasn't fast enough to react to it, really, and thus could only really stare on in concern as Ksenia crouched down in front of him. Hm. Icarus was sure he'd have asked the same question, but it said something odd about the Hume condition, he thought, the fact that they reflexively asked people who were clearly not okay if they were. It did offer the one who was down a chance to explain but ... anyway. Now wasn't exactly the time for that train of thought.

Ah. That made sense, of course. Hunger. "I'm sure it will." Providing that was what was wrong in the first place, but based on Thana's description of what they'd been through it was the most likely option. A pause here to decide on a course of action. "If it starts to pass, see if you can get him sitting on one of the benches. I'll be back in a moment." With something for them both to snack on. Bread or fruit, maybe, for the calories and to tide them over until an actual meal could be offered. Leon would want to meet the two anyway to decide on what they were lacking - probably everything, but well.

Anyway, kitchen. It didn't take long for him to duck into the kitchen to find what he was looking for.

In the mean time, Lycaon had made his way up the stairs and was headed for Kassandros' office. Kass generally knew everything that went on around Nydema, much less the house, so he really doubted he had to say much. But, ah, warning they had guests just in case this was one of the few things that he didn't already know was good. ... The former bloodfighter did wish he'd thought to get names, but, ah, a little late for that.

House Essair: Shards

Andreas on Dec 08, 2018, 03:44 PM
Andreas never did get tired of listening to Dimitrios talk about the things he read. One might think it should get boring, listening to him talk about things that Andreas didn't - or maybe couldn't - understand, depending on the book. But no, it never did. His brother was always so enthusiastic about it all, and Dre himself was always so pleased to be around his twin any more that this was... perfect yeah.

Which of course was how things found them in the library at the moment. Dre listening to Dimitrios talk about one of the books they'd found in the library since Kassandros had given them basically free rein to do what they wanted here as long as they didn't damage anything. It was strange, really, being not so different from home with Thetis and yet it... was. He tried not to think about that too often though. It was depressing to think about, even knowing that their mom was at least alive still. It was still hard.

The library though, it had all kinds of things, and books about all sorts of topics. And if Dre had to be honest, it seemed like Dimitrios was flourishing here at least more than he had before. And he was healing somewhat too - doing far better than he'd been when they were first reunited. It wasn't perfect, but it was enough to be a comfort to Dre. He hadn't been ready to lose his brother too.

They'd been here since shortly after breakfast this morning, and they probably would have been undisturbed until lunch, if Dre hadn't spotted Cyprian where he leaned against the wall, obviously watching them. Dre decided to wait for a pause in Dimitrios' talk before interrupting, if only because it was rude. But they had hardly seen Cyprian since they got here, so he thought he'd probably call at least a little attention to their brother when that happened.

They hadn't always seen eye to eye. But they were still family, after all.

A small, if slightly strained smile answered Kassander's own. Strained because Sandalio was still worried about him, of course, and it was hard to be completely care free with that level of concern flooding through him. But still, it was hard not to answer. And if it bothered him that Kassi seemed to lose himself looking into Sandalio's eyes, then it didn't show. ... Though, of course, it didn't bother him at all. He thought Kassi's eyes were pretty too, honestly.

Really? Hm. Sandalio had plenty of guesses what that might have been, but he didn't say that. Military friends. They hadn't seemed particularly unfriendly but there was still something about the way they'd acted that didn't feel right. Almost... too friendly. Then again, Sandalio had a hard time trusting Dalmascans on the whole and it was possible that he was overreacting just because of that fact. On the other hand, given Kassi had had a legitimate meltdown, maybe he wasn't overreacting at all.

That was not a turn Sandalio had expected this conversation to take. Despite that, he remained quiet here and allowed the other to speak his mind. "Maybe I am stronger than you," Sandalio allowed quietly. "I won't argue that point because there are different kinds of strength and comparing two different people is difficult. You certainly have parts of you that are stronger than I am, the reverse may also be true." Certainly Sandalio wasn't sure he could have withstood the amount of force that had born down on Kass until there was almost nothing left of him, and yet he kept fighting. He was still standing whether there were cracks in the base or not. "But even accepting that point..." He shook his head slightly.

"I don't really expect you to understand why I choose to stay with you." No, not really. "But emotions aren't exactly rational, and the fact that you have been beaten down to this point only makes me want to stay and remain your sword and shield." Because if he left, then there was no one to shield Kassandros now, and maybe no one who even wanted to, except the brothers who Kassi had always wanted to protect, and who had been shielded well enough that they didn't necessarily know what they were facing. "But I also love you very much, and the idea of leaving you is extremely painful." So there was that, too.

"It's okay if you don't know how to." Quietly. "It really is okay with me, because you're who I fell in love with, broken pieces and all. I know it won't be easy, but nothing worth it ever is." That was how he'd always seen it, at least. "Everyone has problems. It's just about deciding what you feel is worth it. To me, you are." So there was that. "...But I do understand if to you, I'm not."

That was a consideration too, and Sandalio had to remember that, despite his interest.


House Essair: Gotta Start Somewhere

Hien Tran on Dec 06, 2018, 03:28 PM
Somewhere around here, Hien had already decided, was his brother. Once in a while, just wandering around, it seemed some people almost seemed to recognize him. He had, however, no real leads. Mostly, he was just wandering around, and hoping brilliance struck him. It'd likely serve him better if he found someone here that knew how Dalmasca worked, among other things, and perhaps the best place to start would be... here. Kirinyaga had to have led Hien here for some reason, right? It wasn't by accident, as much as it seemed like it was, that he'd ended up here in House Essair. No, something or someone was looking out for him, and, it was as good a place to start as any.

Besides, perhaps not ignoring someone in their own house was a good start toward getting somewhere. Hien wasn't getting anywhere on his own, and, as much as he was loathe to admit it, he'd need help. That was the end of that. Thus far, everyone in House Essair had been very kind and welcoming to him, so, perhaps it wouldn't be a bad idea to start here.

With that in mind, sometime after breakfast, Hien scampered up the stairs, one hand reaching out to brush against the wall. It seemed like it was some kind of stucco, gritty and rough, nothing like what you'd find in Jihon. He both liked it, as it was different and interesting, and didn't, as it was... very different, and he wasn't sure he favored the rougher texturing. As he went, he counted the doors; like any well-raised Jihonese man, he didn't pay the slaves any mind as he passed them, though it was hard to tell which ones were slaves, here, as they were not really dressed the part. He wondered, momentarily, if that was smart, but then it probably inspired quite the significant amount of loyalty for a pittance of expenditure on a bit more fabric than typical. ... simply, it reminded him, that, for all that House Essair were kind, he should watch his step. Kassandros was also very intelligent, perhaps dangerously so.

Ah, this door, he'd almost missed it in his musings. Hien stopped, and almost went to open it, then rethought that decision. Perhaps he should knock, instead. So, that was what he did, rapping on the door, almost uncertainly, and waited. It'd be best to approach this somewhat like he would if it were his father, probably.

@Esmera

That was going to make things a bit complicated, then. Shil's ears drooped, slightly, but he was sure he'd figure it out. Dalmascans were notoriously easy to accidentally insult, but, Shil wasn't sure if that was because they really were, or because people liked to demonize them. Perhaps a little of both. Some, most likely, were, while others weren't. One bad apple spoiled the whole bunch, was it? At least he knew which name to call her. She was, so far, his best shot at getting what he wanted. Of course, it was difficult to say, how much to tell her. If he'd found a decent Dalmascan, then he'd want to be as honest with her as possible. If not, he'd need to be careful what he said. He wasn't quite sure how to tell which she was, though. She was having a conversation with him, and not speaking down to him, so that was a start. Many humes tended to speak down to ilim, just because they often didn't take them seriously enough, or saw them as eternal children. Ilim matured too, just not the same way, gosh.

"That would be a puzzling thing, wouldn't it?" he asked, albeit it wasn't a true question. "Well, I need a little help. Those of the north are very well separated from the ways of Dalmasca, you see. I don't know the first thing about Dalmascans, or their houses, but I would like to learn. Preferably without getting a rusty dagger in places rusty daggers are not meant to be, if you catch my meaning. I also had a follower, but she has disappeared between here and there. Any foreign place is potentially dangerous, so certainly, there is nothing terribly special about this being Dalmasca, in that regard." Of course not. Jihon would likely be just as dangerous, if not moreso. Perhaps some of the Free Cities might be less, but, all the same, they were becoming very untrusting of outsiders, and most with a brain could take a gander as to why.

"In any case, I certainly don't expect help freely. How would you like to learn how to make Galacese blades? Galacese blades make quite a bit of money up north; having a source of them down here would quite frankly affix you and your house as one of the richest in southern Azaleon, and make you very difficult to be rid of. It'd be both lucrative for many generations to come, and yet perhaps nigh permanent shielding from any other house that might see the end of yours. I just want to find my friend, wherever she may be, and someone here in a good position that'd be willing to talk peace with me. If Dalmasca, Macenia, and Galace, continue on like this much longer, no one will win. We'll flat destroy each other, and too many have died already. There must be a way to end it."

How long it'd take to make peace between them, that was perhaps in the air, but so long as Shil drew breath, he'd be trying, that was for certain. He loved his country too much, loved his people too much, not to. Perhaps, the truth was, Dalmasca was threatening to destroy both Macenia and Galace, and someday, perhaps, drive the ilim to extinction. But then what? Dalmasca would be standing on a bed of ruin, blood, and fire, and where was the glory in that? Eh. He never did understand those sorts.

Coasts: As Dawn Breaks

Pallas on Dec 04, 2018, 10:48 PM
For a moment, Tihaan made a face, somewhere around befuddled, with perhaps a bit of a cringe, in there. It'd been a long time, since anyone had called him prince Tihaan, and, quite frankly, here he was, some six years later, still in Dalmasca. Some prince he was, huh. And just how, exactly, did he propose he keep his people from being enslaved when, bluntly put, he couldn't even get himself out of it? Albeit, he was sure, if he asked, Kassandros would just let him go; that wasn't the point, entirely. Ah, it was difficult to make sense of what the point was, even in his head.

Inetkaes... that sounded familiar... ah! "Sahura's sister," mumbled more to himself, as the pieces fell into place. Then, that meant, she was probably here looking for Gannicus. "No disturbance," he said, more sure this time. "And just Tihaan is fine. I was just doing morning patrols and you seemed familiar, though I ah, couldn't figure out why, at first. G-Surya, he is probably asleep, still. But, welcome to the nicest house in Nydema, this is House Essair. ... barring House Asheron. Ah, you're welcome to come in, if you like." A were as old as her, if she were a threat, she'd have already been a threat. "Master Essair's probably meditating, Leon's likely got breakfast well underway, though he may be talking Atenra out of the kitchen supply closet... ... oh, one of Surya's sons, actually. We discovered last night he's a were-cobra. Surya seemed oddly amused." Well, that guy was amused by a lot of strange things.

"I'd imagine Master Essair's already expecting you." He was like that. "Wouldn't be a bother, or anything. Actually, Leon likes to feed people. If he catches scent of you and you didn't come eat, he'll be pouty all week."

Town Center: stay

Ksenia Essair on Dec 04, 2018, 08:41 PM
"I see." It did, however, look much better. It seemed more of a subtle grace, now, than an imposing that tried a bit too hard. It suited what she remembered of Kassandros' temperament, at least, but it was also hard to say if what she remembered aligned with reality. Memories were, of course, fickle things, and hindsight sometimes looked better, or worse, than it really was.

Was that one a slave? It was hard to tell; everyone here seemed to be dressed decently, and none of them had a collar she could see. Oh, wait, one of them had an armband... after a few moments of looking, she noticed they all did. Well, that was, perhaps, less demeaning. Icarus spoke to Lycaon very kindly, though, even said please... hmm. Yes, if they were all like this, they'd done better than she could have expected. She wondered if it was Kassandros' influence, or if it'd come from Merenwen. Perhaps a combination of both.

"Ask first before you randomly hug someone, got it," Ksenia murmured. Of course, logic would've told her, that wasn't what Icarus meant, but perhaps asking before randomly touching someone in general was not a terrible idea, anyway. Hmm, insisting on asking would have a neat side-effect of pushing the idea they could say no. And perhaps, someday, they would. ... clever.

Thana followed, and Ksenia was about to ask him to set her down - she thought she could stand on her own, at least long enough to sit somewhere - but he stopped on his own, and then fell. A surprised squeak, and Ksenia scrambled around the floor, in front of him. "Thana, are you okay?" She wasn't stupid, mind you. She knew how much food they'd had the last few days, weeks, who knew how long it'd been. For him to have given her as much as he had, he had to have cut his own diet. Well, if nothing else, even if Kassi didn't want her around, Thana wasn't involved in any of this. Maybe he'd keep him, and he'd be okay, at least.

Gently, though, she held her hands out, to keep him from falling all the way over. Hitting the marble sounded like it must've hurt, already. She didn't want him hitting his head. "I think he's cut his diet," she said, frowning a bit. "There really wasn't enough for us both. Hopefully this will pass." She could hope, at least. But she didn't think it'd been long enough for him to be threatening to starve.

Town Center: stay

Thanatus on Dec 04, 2018, 02:06 AM
At least their discussions were interesting enough to listen to. It also told him a bit more about the house, and the family, in some manner. Clearly, there were some things that hadn't quite been discussed that should have been. Though he was curious, as to how, exactly, she'd ended up in that tower, he'd never directly asked. For one thing, that seemed terribly rude, and for another, he was too busy trying to find the cobras. In any case, he was paying attention, at least partly to try and glean whatever hint in regard to that may be dropped. So far, though, he still had no idea.

One would wonder, here, if it mattered, but given he was risking his neck over this, he'd like to know. Anyway. The grounds were nice, at least; the house didn't look terribly big, which, he supposed might be a good thing. Smaller estates, after all, were harder to get lost in. None of those he could see, in range of them, seemed terribly upset. Actually, they seemed more at peace than usual, for Dalmasca. Strange. He almost wondered if he was imagining it. Maybe those cuts to his diet were, finally, messing with his head.

This one's name was Lycaon. That was a relatively easy name to remember, at least. Thana, for his part, nodded slightly in greeting, arched an eyebrow a bit at what Icarus said, after the other was gone, but he didn't say anything. Some houses said that. They didn't really mean it, though. He supposed he'd see.

In any case, following him, though he didn't make it too far in, before he stopped abruptly. He almost dropped Ksenia right there, but managed not to, albeit he had no idea how. Everything seemed to slow down. His knees slammed into the marble; it'd pass in a second, it was just dizziness. Those came and went, once in a while. That'd hurt, likely, in a minute, too. He did manage to have the presence of mind to let go of Ksenia, so she could slide off him if she wanted, and one hand raised to press against his head. Bodies could be terribly dramatic.

Shil. Alright, she could manage that. Astraea smiled at the Ilim for a moment and considered carefully the question she'd been posed. Up north. Was he actually Galacese? That seemed to be the most likely answer based on his phrasing but that was ... hm. Very unusual. Why would one of the Galacese have come willingly to Dalmasca? Certainly he wasn't here as a slave, as he wasn't collared and the chances of them tossing an Ilim into the blood games... well. It happened, but it was rare enough that it wasn't the first assumption she would make.

No, he was more likely here as a traveler of some kind. Didn't he know how dangerous it was to be here without protection? Probably he did. "How Dalmascans address each other depends heavily on your station in comparison to the person you're speaking to as well as your general relationship with them. You can't generally go wrong addressing someone by their family name though, most will correct you to call them something more familiar if that's what they prefer." And generally it was going to be better to be asked to be more familiar than for the other to feel that you weren't being formal enough when the situation called for it.

"You can call me Astraea though." Given she'd just introduced herself, it seemed appropriate to tell him that after that statement about how Dalmascans tended to address each other.

"One does wonder what brings a son of the north so far south." Astraea just set that down, really, not directly asking but making it rather clear that she hadn't figured out a good reason for him to be wondering around a country he obviously wasn't familiar with alone. That was... certainly unusual behavior. And the Ilim were generally more cautious than that, given the number of them held in slavery here, so she had a hard time believing there wasn't a reason or plan involved.

Perhaps he was merely looking for a lost loved one. Astraea wasn't one to judge, but it was likely that without guidance he was going to end up in just as much trouble as they were, if that was indeed what he sought. On the other hand, involving herself in this seemed... unwise. Then again, she didn't know what this was yet. She'd wait and see what he said before going any further in either direction - waiting for a reaction to her last statement, even if indirect, was likely her safest course.

Well Atenra did feel a bit bad for hissing at Leon, but at least it hadn't gone badly. No one had been hurt, and he could be relieved for that much. And Leon didn't seem to be upset about it so that was a positive as well. He'd just let that go, and accept the fact that apparently during the full moon that was something to look forward to now. He was going to turn into a snake and apparently needed to make some arrangements for that instead of being out and about, at least until he had himself completely under control.

"Uh. A little stiff actually. Probably because I woke up laying curled in a ball." Which if he was a cobra, of course he had, that was basically their default napping state as far as he remembered from reading. They curled up to avoid being stepped on which made sense given the damn things could easily be as long as he was tall. Still human spines didn't appreciate the same sort of abuse with any kind of grace. "But it's not bad." Nah, moving around would set him right, that was all.

Along those lines, Atenra did stretch a little now that he was out of the closet to restore some of the range of motion.

"Did they? That's neat." It was yeah. ... To be fair though if a born were could be anything then apparently it wasn't so odd that he'd come out so different from his father. On the other hand, it was interesting that sired weres were similar and born ones weren't. Wasn't that how biology usually worked? Eh. It probably didn't matter too much.

"I might, actually." Maybe. "If nothing else, curious what he thinks about it." Surya had been around a long time and probably had some thoughts at least, even if he didn't have an exact answer.

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