Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Once an isolated and dying township, an influx of academics, adventurers and thrill seekers have made Scalvoris Town their home. From scholars' tea shops to a new satellite campus for Viden Academy, this is an exciting place to visit or make your home!

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Kalortah
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Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Sun Mar 22, 2020 9:51 pm

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29th of Cylus 720

It was a quiet night in the Scholar’s Nook, or perhaps it was afternoon. It was becoming difficult for Lara to tell as Cylus wore on toward its ending. He sat in a cozy little corner, not far from the fire, to which there were a few others gathered. However they all had their noses stuck in their respective books, looking for all the world as if they wished to have nothing to do with him personally. He being, of course, Larza Impre, the human guise of Kalortah Satravial. It was a well kept secret of Kalortah, or so he thought, that he was the owner of not one but two transformation gems. Each with its own accompanying guise that varied wildly from the Avriel he truly was.

Where Kalortah favored pale colors and bold reds and blue colors in his clothing, Larza wore only woolen clothing of black and brown. He had no jewelry in this form, for Larza played the part of a humble Athartian human. His only concessions to having any sort of wealth to call on were the fact that his black wools weren’t dyed, which suggested they were sheared from the relatively rare black sheep. Kalortah couldn’t abide the smell of black dye, and it often caused him fits of sneezing. Larza was no less discerning when it came to that.

He sat on a plush sofa near the fire, wrapping his attention around a rather poorly made journal. It was Kalortah’s journal. In it, was contained the practice scratches of Kalortah’s attempts at penmanship. Avrielic script was elegant, beautiful and precise, and equally as difficult to master for all that. It’d been a while since Larza had occasion to practice his linguistic skills, but here he was. He was rather closed off in posture, however, not willing to let the others see what he was reading and writing in it. Upon the end table, an ink well and quill. But for now he made marks on his journal with graphite, saving the ink for when he was satisfied with what he was writing.

On it, a few choice phrases he’d caught people in Athart using, of Dehasin. He still wished to learn the language, although he had no intention of returning to Athart. A language as ubiquitous among slaves, however, might be a useful one to master, he reflected. If only to learn what those sneaky gutter mice were saying about him.

It was almost deliciously blasphemous, that he was making Dehasin phonetic marks with Avrielic script in Lorien. The strange marriage of the three languages, one written, the other two spoken, might’ve been sen as vile by some among the Avriel. But Kalortah… er… Larza, no longer cared what they thought. He once thought that way, that his people needed protecting or coddling, or uplifting. But such was not their way. They were strong, and would endure as long as the weakness was purged. So it would be with the flightless avriel.

The thought brought bitter feelings to the fore again as Larza pressed his graphite stick against the page, and it snapped. Cursing under his breath in Lorien, he shook his head and swept the dusting of graphite from the page gently, shaking it out.

Then, he set the graphite aside, and with a knife pulled from his belt began whittling it down to a sharpened point once more.

His materials left much to be desired, yet he soldiered on despite it all. It was his own journal afterall, that he’d bound himself in that workshop in Athart, so many arcs ago. Even though it was near without value, he couldn’t bring himself to buy the work of another. Call it vanity, he supposed with a small smirk.


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Re: Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Tue Mar 24, 2020 5:58 pm

29 Cylus 720


Yeva had a lot of studying to do. She had thought a nice warm drink at the Scholar's Nook would do the trick, waiting at the counter to order a coffee with honey, and offering a shy 'thank you' in Scalveen. It was one of the few words she had picked up and she shuffled through the cafe with a stack of books piled under one arm and a saucer in another, "'Scuse me," Yeva's big brown eyes scanned the room for an empty seat, spotting one across from a willowy man with long black hair. First glance, she almost mistook him for a woman but rounding his table, she could see the cut of his jaw but she didn't seem to hesitate. Instead, the medic smiled warmly, "I'm so sorry to bother you. I was wondering if anyone was going to sit here. I didn't know if you were expecting someone else and I just..." her voice trailed off and she stared.

"Have we met?"

The redhead laid the coffee down in an effort to readjust her grip on the stack of novels she still held, the sleeves of her cloak pushed up, "You just look so familiar. I just... can't quite seem to place you... I'd swear we've met before."

"Yeva!"

The woman gave a jump, the sound of man's voice deep and demanding. She looked over her shoulder at the Avriel who had just entered the cafe alongside the sound of a doorbell but it was not a grimace of fear she gave, but a smile, "Azrael, I knew you'd come."

The Avriel adverted his sharp eyes to the list of drinks on the far wall, a his white and black wings settling with a frown the followed, but not before he gave a rather haughty look in Larza's direction, "Why are you talking to strangers?" Yeva blinked, realizing the shift in language. Her friend was speaking Lorein and she struggled to follow.

"St...stran...stranger?"

He repeated the word again, this time in Dehasin but she only shook her head. Azrael groaned and huffed, turning sharply to give his order to the server that was waiting. She was no doubt going to get scolded. Yeva grimaced and rubbed the back of her neck, clearing her throat as she remembered the man in front of her, "Um, anyway, do you mind if I take this?" she patted the back of the chair, now blushing when she turned back to the long haired man writing, and pointed to table behind him, where only one available chair sat. Not enough for her and her Avriel companion, and the others seemed to be filled with students and scholar's alike, "I don't want to keep you if you're busy."
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Re: Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:12 pm

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Larza could feel a stirring in the pocket of his satchel. He stopped his writing for just a moment, setting the graphite stick aside in order to reach into the pocket. There, he found his companion, the singing tunawa, Ibudo. He was still wearing that funny mother of pearl, shell hat that he’d acquired in Athart. It was then the disguised avriel realized the tunawa had been humming through Larza’s study session, it became more clear as he lifted him out of the satchel, and stood him on the end table. ”Ibudo, would you…”

"'Scuse me," Said the voice of a young woman, which prommpted Larza to suddenly ignore the tunawa, and look up at her. "I'm so sorry to bother you. I was wondering if anyone was going to sit here. I didn't know if you were expecting someone else and I just..."

"Have we met?"


Larza frowned, squinting his eyes momentarilya as he regarded her. He was about to shake his head ‘no’, when Ibudo let out a joyous shout in his typical sing-song voice. ”Yeva! It’s Yeva! Larza, you remember her, from Athart, she gave me my hat! I’ll never forget!”

So saying, Ibudo was so caught up in his surprise and joy at seeing a familiar face, that he began doing a little dance on the end table.

Larza sighed as he looked from Ibudo to Yeva, and then toward the Avriel who’d accompanied the girl. Larza took it this was the girl’s owner… He almost wondered if they knew that slavery was illegal here. Not that anyone was in the business of confiscating slaves these days. Most left others to their business, and well enough alone.

He nodded first to the avriel, and then to Yeva, ”Ah yes, I remember! You were that woman who wanted to go into the Forest of Stones… Yes I remember. Yeva was it?”

Yeva’s companion interjected, asking in Lorien why she was speaking to strangers. Of course Larza knew Lorien perfectly well, and could speak it as well as any. Yet he wasn’t sure if Athart humans made it their custom to learn the language… In a split decision, he decided that Larza had learned it. Perhaps he had avriel friends who taught him, just as this one appeared to have taught Yeva.

He spoke to her ‘Azrael’ in Lorien, ”I believe I’ve met your companion before, when we both were residing in Athart…”

Larza nodded and gestured toward a few empty seats that were nearby, allowing that both Yeva and her companion could sit. ”Please, have a seat, both of you if you will.”

Ibudo finally chimed in, when Yeva suggested she would be an imposition to anyone. ”Oh pish tosh! You are most welcome to take a seat with us, Yeva! What brings you and your… your Azrael to Scalvoris? Did you know that Ka… Larza found me in Scalvoris last arc before returning to Athart? We’ve been close ever since.”

Larza nearly cringed when the tunawa almost let his true name out, but hid it with a smile at the two in front of them, ”Yes, he helped me back then when I attended the university.”


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Re: Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Sun Mar 29, 2020 2:08 pm

29 Cylus 720


"And you were the singer! Yes, I remember!" Visions of memory came weaving back, of the gorgeous beach front of Athart and the man singing atop white sands, "You had an amazing voice. And Ibudo!" Yeva's brown eyes lowered to the Tunawa dancing happily on the corner of the table, still wearing the very gift she had given him, "Ah, you still have your hat! I'm so pleased you liked it."

Yeva crouched before him to get a better look, smiling brightly. She glanced over, hearing Larza speak in Lorien to Azrael who's eyes narrowed. He shot of look of accusation at the red head, "That's funny," he muttered, his fresh coffee held in one hand, "She never mentioned either of you."

Azrael was upset. Either because she hadn't fully filled him in on what happened in his disappearance, or because now there was someone who may have known about Athart. Who could put them at risk... "A lot was happening. It was a... a pretty emotional day for... for everyone."

Quick to try and put the Avriel at ease, Yeva's smile was tense when Ibudo offered they were welcome to take a seat, "I would like that," she reached back to hold Azrael's arms, "Isn't it nice to sit with friends?"

"Friends?" she heard the scoff before he could even give it, cut off by her squeezing his arm in decision.

"We would love that! Let me pull up a chair; go, on Az, take a seat. Do you need any cream or sugar real quick?"

"...No."

Yeva didn't seem to notice the Tunawa's slip, but her companion did, sharp eyes flickering between the two. He sat rigid, settling his large wings across the back of the cafe chair and she thought over the question while she settled down, "Really? I didn't know you attended the university! Me too! What's your study, or what was it? Music?" It was a simple guess based on what little she knew of the human, "Azrael and I met in Rharne. He- " she could feel his warning glare and she busied herself by drizzling honey into her mug, "He's been my best friend for.... six arcs?"

"Seven."

"Seven arcs... That's sort of how I ended up in Athart and then... Well, you know."
There was no need to speak of it. Being unable to do anything it... it was a cause of great shame; she still thought about it. Tried to think of what could be the cause and cure, "Right now we're doing well. I'm going to school - Working on my letter qualification in medicine, and I'm back at the Order of Adunih. It won't be much longer and I'll get my blue cloak. Maybe even a trim."

"You're from Athart, Larza?" Azrael blew a waft of steam from his cup, watching the man over the rim of the glass.
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Re: Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Fri Apr 17, 2020 6:47 pm

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Larza wasn't much of an expressive man, it took most of his calm and focused on maintaining a veneer of acceptance of the swarm of humanity that crawled the earth along with his alter-ego. So when it came to putting on airs of pleasance with people, even those he was acquainted with? It was a difficult proposition. A slip of focus could result in a disastrous episode, that would blow his cover.

Ibudo meanwhile was all smiles at Yeva, he whistled happily as he straightened his little, pearlescent, snailshell hat. "Oh I would never imagine taking it off! Sometimes it slips though, I should perhaps see a jeweler about getting a chin strap for it... What do you think, K... Larza?"

Larza suppressed an annoyed sigh that he desperately wanted to heave. Instead, he nodded, allowing the corners of his lips to curve upward slightly. "Yes, perhaps I'll bring you to a jeweler if you'd like later on..."

Then Larza turned his attention toward Azrael. "Yes, I met her in Athart, briefly. It was a rather random and brief encounter. She gave my little friend his hat as you see... And she's far too kind about my voice." Bile churned at the back of his throat at this statement of false modesty. It was a somewhat ubiquitous human custom, though, at least of the more gentle folk to downplay their abilities. One that he would need to accept and master if he was to pass himself off as human when he needed to keep a low profile.

The tunawa nodded his head fervently, which caused the shell to pitch forward slightly on his leafy brow. "Yes! Music! I'm a singer, and I know a bit of the cymbals!" So saying, the tunawa unhitched the two metal discs, which could've fit on a human's fingers, but in his hands were large as a shield. He chimed them together a few times, to demonstrate.

"Yes... Ah my stint at the University was brief, but he tried to help me out... I studied linguistics, among other subjects." Larza murmured, and it was true. He had studied both singing and linguistics.

Larza noted the disparity between Yeva's recollection of her an Azrael's friendship. It appeared that Azrael had either a sharper memory or Yeva was more important to him than he was to her. In either case, that didn't concern Larza too much. It only might mean the Avriel was obsessed with his human. That sometimes happened, and it never ended well.

But Kalortah had broken ties with the Avriel, and Athart. After seeing first hand the treatment of the Unfeathered, he had decided that the ruling class of Athart was not worthy, and swiftly departed from those lands. He still agonized over that decision, but in his private moments, he knew it was the right choice.

"A blue cloak... Of the Order? That's an impressive achievement. I hear most don't make it past green, even after arcs of service."

He turned toward Azrael as the avriel addressed him, "Aye yes, I'm a freeman from Athart. Luckily, I slipped out of the city before - the unpleasantness with the Unfeathered." Larza ventured no opinion of the treatment that the Avriel guard visited upon their own people, quarantining them and forbidding them from seeking a life elsewhere. Of course, a few transports had made it out, but the Windshear Brotherhood had sunk most.

"It's a long way to go from Athart to Scalvoris, though." Larza remarked. Of course, he would know, having made the journey himself. It was difficult enough when you were going on the wing. Sailing by boat had to be a far less pleasant way. "I traveled for some time by caravan, before making my way back up here from a ferry in Korlasir."


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Re: Bird Scratch at the Scholar's Nook

Fri May 22, 2020 8:42 pm

29 Cylus 720


Impressive? Was it?

"Oh, that's sweet of you to say," she inhaled, smiling down at Ibudo as she took notice of the cymbals he had displayed proudly. So cute, "Really, it's been an arc since I joined the Order and I feel like I've not done enough. Athart didn't have a branch and my help wasn't wanted or... well... respected," she frowned. It was hard to come to terms with leaving the city in such a vulnerable state, but she was at great risk herself and in no shape to the complex aid they had needed. "...Which is fair. I was still very inexperienced and I can't force someone to allow treatment. That was a bit of a set back and a difficult lesson, but I've really thrown myself into my work-"

"You're a freeborn from Athart?" Azrael was speaking to Larza, but he watched Ibudo with the intensity a hawk might watch a mouse. He didn't seem to notice or care that he had interrupted the woman next to him, blowing steam from the rim of his drink. Yeva wasn't sure she appreciated the winged man's scrutiny; they almost sounded like an accusation, "If you left before the Unfeathered, then you wouldn't have met Yeva. So you left after."

Yeva frowned in her seat, elbowing Azrael's ribs. He snarled mid-drink and shot her a look, which she returned, followed by a steady tone of speech, "The whole ordeal was unpleasant. I think we can all agree to that, no need to nitpick about the time frame," She didn't understand why Azrael was so shut off to the idea of new people - he always thought they were hiding something, had ulterior motives or were simply disrespectful. He never took anything and anyone at face value and it was incredibly frustrating some trials. On one hand, Yeva understood - Azrael, like many other Avriel must have been psychologically and socially conditioned to be elitist, not to mention the brush with death he had experienced in Rharne arcs prior that had only served to reinforce prejudice ideas, making him extra weary of non-Avriel - but what she despised the most was his use of both subtle and more obvious digs to test anyone she dared share breath with.

It felt like she was only allowed to share her attention with him or else he would try and run off anyone who dared threaten their unity, "So! Larza, Ibudo," It was clear she was trying to damage control. There was a tension now that hadn't been there before, but Yeva smiled and breezed past it, "You said you studied Linguistics? I've actually considering going into the program next cycle."

Azrael stiffened beside her in an effort to keep his surprise hidden.

"I learn Lorein. I learn Dehasin. I want to learn more. Like Avrellian Script. Or maybe Rakahi. It would help with different patients, I think," she smiled, sipping her drink as she tried to pull from the limited store of vocabulary and grammar she had used in the jungle city. Since Larza was freeborn, maybe he knew Lorein, "What talk you know or learn?"
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