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Qaerris bumps into a distressed Elyna

The capital city of the of Rynmere, here is seated the only King in Idalos.
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Qaerris
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52nd of Ashan, 716
It was getting to be that time of the evening. Though the tavern was beginning to fill up and a beautiful bartender was holding the fort this evening, it was up to Qaerris to muster the desire to leave and tend to his job for the evening. Tonight, he was not to meet with Evelyn, but another client who had at last mustered the courage to summon him after a drunken affair several nights prior. It was up to the Mortalborn now to satisfy the woman and end up with another client to add to his list of regular affairs.

Eventually I'll need not seek out clients and simply cycle between my existing ones. When that day comes it'll be a grand relief for as long as I keep to this life.

In truth, actively soliciting was quite fun, but it was arduous work that involved far too many drinks and rarely compensated for itself in that evening. Not keen to spend all the coin he had saved before arriving in Rynmere, he deemed it best to find clients who could offer him predictive business. A crease formed in his eyebrows as he pinched his nose, listening to the ambient noise of the tavern before, at last, the harlot rose from the stool he was seated upon, slinging his knapsack over his shoulder and turning out of the tavern.

The evening, considering it was Ashan, was rather brisk, Qaerris' flesh warmed from the alcohol, but he searched in his knapsack for his coat, which he threw over his shoulders, doing up each button right in front of the tavern before he advanced. There was moisture in the air, as if light precipitation had touched down from the skies of Rynmere mere minutes ago. Had Qaerris not heard the downpour? Had it been that light? And in the end, did it really matter? The presence of light precipitation insinuated that the chances were high that more would fall later in the evening. And thus, it was up to Qaerris to make haste before the rain come down upon him and drench his coat, leaving him with no option but to endure the cold.

The Mortalborn noted a figure in the distance, a curious glance flitting forward as he attempted to make odds out of who the figure was. She, for the visage was clearly that of a woman, was dressed familiarly, and Qaerris wondered to himself if he perhaps knew the woman. He'd not seek to call out to the woman, instead carrying on as he would, but instead of making haste as he had initially sought to, he slowed his ascent towards the house of his client.

She can wait. After all, she made me wait for her summons.
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Last edited by Qaerris on Wed Apr 20, 2016 3:26 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 473
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Elyna
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Elyna was well aware that she must look a sight, but she didn’t care. Forget hard liquor she was drunk on the come down from adrenaline. With her arms wrapped tight around her chest she stumbled on, swearing to herself. Her leg hurt, so she limped. She was missing the left sleeve of her shirt and the other was coated in blood. She had been grateful for the brief shower of rain, because it had washed away some of the grime in her hair and on her clothes, but it had also made the cut on her forehead and split across her lip start running. She tasted the metal when she probed it with her tongue and slumped further into her own shoulders, half-drowned, shivering and determined just to get home.

She had hesitated at the end of Levinia’s street but turned away. It wasn’t fair to keep pushing her own bad news on her friend. Levinia was a ray of light, how many times could she take in a broken friend? They said there wasn’t a price or a limit on true friendship, but Elyna didn’t want to risk finding out if that were true. Flashes of the night kept dropping into her thoughts as she walked, slowing her every few steps before she pushed on through them. The crates snapping beneath her back, Brek learning over her, his hands around her throat. She pressed one hand to her neck, feeling it burning with friction. She had no way of telling what it looked like, but the bruises were going to be impressive. How had it gotten to that. How had she ended up in such a bad position, how did she let two drunk idiots get the better of her so badly? She ran a hand over her eyes, rubbing away any threat of tears. None of that.

Caught up, she didn’t notice anyone approaching until she all but walking into them, startled she stepped back, flinching away as though stung by a brand. What now? Her heart hammered in her chest, all too eager to bring back the adrenaline. She looked up though at the tall man and her mouth fell open. She knew him. Elyna swayed a little to the side, she’d had a fierce headache the night after their drinking and couldn’t remember all of the details. But he had agreed that they would be friends. A friend. She swallowed. She’d never had a friend quite like the man before her.

“Hello,” her voice cracked. It was all she could think of to say.
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Qaerris
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The idea of friendship was one that did not agree all too well with the Mortalborn son of Zanik. As the visage presented itself to Qaerris, part of him wanted to just keep going, pretend he didn't know the woman who looked so battered and beaten in front of him, She'd obviously been through quite the night, her lip and face cut up, her shirt laden with blood. Was it hers? The Mortalborn tried not to care, but he had offered his friendship to the woman and devious as Qaerris was, his word was gold when it he was telling the truth. When the woman parted her lips to speak, Qaerris stepped forward. Hands moved to cup the woman's jaw, the Mortalborn intently studying Elyna for several moments before, without a word, he took hold of her hand and began to walk.

"What are you doing outside like that? It's about to rain again... It'll only exacerbate your injuries..."

Thankfully, Qaerris lived quite close to the tavern, frequenting it out of convenience rather than how much he truly enjoyed their assortment of spirits. The two, if she decided to follow, would wind down a path and advance towards the harlot's house. Unlocking the door and pushing it aside, Qaerris closed it once Elyna had let herself in. Qaerris' gaze was laden with concern, the Mortalborn at last allowing himself to get a feel for the breadth of her injuries. In truth, Qaerris had no idea how to treat her, but it was too late to take the woman out in search of treatment. Instead, he'd offer her his hospitality, Qaerris fetching a clean rag and handing it to Elyna so that she could clean herself up as he sat down at the table, quite at a loss.

"Do you need some water, Ely? Or to lay down? I can't offer you much, but... fuck, what happened to you?"

Clearly the Mortalborn was concerned, the surprise held upon his expression rather distinct from his usual arrogant disposition. Qaerris let a moment pass, the man intent on keeping himself from openly staring at the woman and her assortment of wounds. But, it was impossible to miss and even more so to ignore.
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Elyna
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“I’m going home,” she’d replied, stumbling after him. It was the truth she was headed home. She had every intention of going home and crawling into bed and never getting out of it again, “I have to be in the outside to get home,” the Skyrider wasn’t making much sense and she rubbed her hand over her forehead. A headache was blooming at the back of her eyes and she forgot about the cut. She flinched as her fingers grazed across it and concentrated instead on not falling over as Qaerris led the way. The world still pitched and rolled, as though she’d drink more than her fill of liquor, but she knew she’d not. Disorientated, she assumed Qaeris was leading her home only to realise too late that he was. His home. He didn’t know where she lived.

The young woman paused on the door step before stepping in. She tried to look the place over as she sank down but it was all a bit blurry. She pressed the rag cloth to her lip head, flinching again. When she bought it away again, it was sticky with blood. She tested the spot in the corner of her mouth again, she couldn’t even remember being hit this way? Or in the head? Away from the streets, she had time to breathe though her skin felt as though it wanted to crawl away from her and she was afraid her heart would never stop hitting against her ribs so hard.

Once the dizziness had passed she looked up again, he’d asked her questions. Her gaze moved over the rooms once more, taking stock of the exits before she frowned. No, he had been kind, he had been generous. She swallowed once more and set the rag down, “could I have some water…and a bowl?” She asked quietly.

What had happened? She avoided his searching gaze, he was clearly worried. That was something, she must look really bad. Maybe she should have gone to Levi first?

Another quick glance at his face told her she wouldn’t escape this so easily. He wouldn’t let her get away without answering his questions. Where to start?

“I went to meet some friends…” they hadn’t known she was coming, and she’d not seen them, “then this…man-” she frowned, had he really been a man? She could picture his face in its last breathe, the open wound at his neck. Her frown deepened, he must have scratched it somewhere? It had been bleeding…

She shook her head quickly, everything was muddled up; “he was just…annoying so I l-left to go home and…and…he was such an idiot,” she looked up, “why didn’t he just...” it still made no sense. His mindless persistence. Why had he not just given up.
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Qaerris
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All of this would have been so much easier if he'd just kept walking. This woman knew how to take care of herself, but now that she was here, her mind seemed to simply collapse. What sat before Qaerris was but an echo, one scarred from an obviously traumatic event and a bloody mess to boot. The Mortalborn couldn't help but feel the nauseating surge of pity. How it overwhelmed the senses, nearly as much as the pungent, metallic tench of blood that permeated from Qaerris' now soiled rag. When Elyna began to recount her incredibly flustered retelling of what happened, Qaerris listened as he fetched her the bowl and his half-empty waterskin, setting it upon the table. If the woman left now, Qaerris would still be able to leave and make it in time to his client, but there was no way that was going to happen now. Not with his hastily made decision to bring Elyna to his house. A frown pursed his lips for a moment as he sought to piece together what the woman was trying to say.

A man? By the sound of her trauma... was she accosted? How horrid...

Though Qaerris was one who by no means was timid with sexual advances, once they were spurned and he saw it fit to give it up, the Mortalborn acquiesced. After all, it was Qaerris' profession to satisfy the desires of others, not necessarily his own. Narrowed eyebrows held a great deal of anger, not towards the skyrider, but whomever had seen it fit to accost her. It seemed, however, with the woman's limp and how she had moved, that the men had not been entirely successful. But, Qaerris didn't have enough information to go on and figure out what had happened.

"Take a moment, Ely. Calm down, take a few breaths. Just stay here until you feel better, and tell me what else happened. I need to know."

The Mortalborn hated being out of the know, particularly when it involved people he was coming to care about. She was right, of course. Now that Elyna was here, there was by no means he was letting her leave until he knew everything about what had gone on.
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He needed to know. She glanced up at him, surprised and then suspicious. Why did he need to know, why as it so important? Why did everyone want to know? Elyna had already gone through in painstaking detail with the Knights what had happened. She touched her fingers to her forehead, they said that speaking about these things helped you make sense of them. Her thoughts were swimming and her expression softened again. He had invited her into his home and shown nothing but kindness and concern.

“He just-” Elyna faltered again before reaching out, wetting the cloth before pressing it against her forehead. The cool water was a relief and went some way to ease the throbbing headache that was building. She took a deep breath as advised and closed her eyes. Flinching as she did so, because the first thing she saw was Malcolm, falling back, eyes wide with shock as they both realised he had been stabbed.

From the beginning, she thought and forced the image aside. “The man,” she began with more certainty, “he…was just a boy really. I made myself clear and left him behind at the bar. He followed me out. I dropped him on his arse,” and that should have been the end of it. Elyna paused and shook herself, taking a moment to rinse off the cloth and freshen the water, pressing it to the back of her neck and feeling herself slow growing calmer, though her hands still shook. It was easier to focus though.

“His friend,” she frowned, trying to piece together what had happened, “I just…the next thing I knew is I was being pulled off to this alley I- I kicked him, I managed to get a punch in and I got away” she looked at the ceiling, as though searching it for answers, “but if I got away from him, then the other one was there and,” her words turned shallow again, more hurried. She should have been better, hit harder, have taken the first man out the first time and then only had one attacker, but how could she have imagined? Everything that could have happened started pulling at her and it was a struggle not to fall into despair. It could have been, it wasn’t. But it was still terrifying.

“The Captain I work with, Seven knows how he found me but he…he took one out and the second ran. But he came back, oh…” she choked and pressed her fingers against her mouth, “they’ve taken him off to the infirmary…if he dies because-” she couldn’t finish the sentence.
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Qaerris
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As the Mortalborn listened to his human friend piece together her story, he couldn't help but notice the feat that manifested within her voice. Was she reliving the experience? Did she find herself back when the blows had struck and she'd been reduced to this state? Qaerris' lips pursed as he reached forward, clasping Elyna's hand in his own.

The Mortalborn's grip was sure and firm, his fingertips lightly trailing along the back of her hand. He'd trace of light indentations formed by blows struck earlier in the evening, fingertips kneading into the skin as he sought to soothe. The Mortalborn could not treat her injuries, but he could try to sway her spirits, at least as much as he could muster. A rare sense of compassion seemed to well up within Qaerris as he recalled his history, the unwanted advances of another imposing upon his free will. In his case he had never been beaten, but his initial refusals to his long-deceased mistresses had results in time spent without food or water until he was more agreeable to their requests.

Disgusting... Getting spurned once is enough. There's nothing good that comes of forcing oneself upon anyone.

Was this a sense of righteousness? Or a sense of justice? No, but it was a morality that even Qaerris found himself agreeing to, a sense of sexual self-identification that no one should be able to take away from a person. When at laat Elyna finished speaking, Qaerris twisted his body, shifting in his chair and pulling it so that he sat properly beside Elyna. He did not seek to embrace her, for even in his compassion he felt compelled to distance himself. It was, after all, in his nature to find that a hug or a more intimate means of expressing affection often times led to another thing entirely.

Carefully, the Mortalborn moved the fingers of his free hand to lightly sift along the hairs at each side of Elyna's head. It was a slow movement intent on further attempts at soothing the individual, Qaerris seeking to move her hair out of her face so that she could have an easier time wiping the blood and cleansing the wounds with his sullied towel.

"Stop," he said with a surprising amount of strength. While not one to lecture people, the Mortalborn could see the dark path Elyna was taking herself down. Was this truly concern for a superior officier? Was Elyna simply sensitive? Or was there more to that relationship that met the eye? He didn't know, and it infuriated him.

"You can't go about blaming yourself for something like that. He chose to involve himself. He knew what he was doing and obviously, you were worth the risk and the wound that he suffered. Blaming yourself is completely devaluing this person's decision to defend you."
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His touch was gentle and had the desired effect, Elyna traced the echo of his fingers against her forehead before she slumped. Her head bowed she continued to carefully wipe the scratches across her forehead and then wet the rag again, pressing it to her top lip. It was swollen and the fabric stung as she tried to take it away. She touched the split hesitantly with her tongue. It would take a few days to heal. She was used to bruises, cuts and scrapes, they came with the territory and the additional training she tended to undertake in the training grounds. But all that practice and she'd still come unstuck?

Was Qaerris right? Did she devalue Malcolms attempt to help her by blaming herself? The skyrider found she had a lump in her throat and coughed to clear it. What had he been doing there anyway? What if he hadn't? She saw the larger man's face in her mind and clenched her hand tightly on the rag, struggling to put the thought and all the fear tangled up with it, aside, "I don't think he knew it was me," she admitted after a few moments of quiet had stretched between them, "I just think he heard or saw something. So I was lucky," the young woman nodded to herself, "I'm lucky there are good people who will try saving strangers."

The incessant shake in her fingers had still a little and she found herself retreating, seeking calm in the quiet room and the steadier beating of her heart. The young woman forced herself to look up at the man who'd only become less than a stranger. She offered him a half-smile, "you didn't have to do any of this. Thank you." She looked him over with care for the first time that evening. He was immaculately groomed, something she was coming to expect of the young man. Except after a few too many whiskeys, she remembered that he lost some of his composure and sheen at that point.

"I've interrupted your evening?" she blinked quickly, suddenly realizing that she had no idea where he'd been or where he'd been heading. She'd simply accepted the offer of help without question.
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Qaerris' client was already by and long gone at this point. At least, that was what he would assure himself of, Qaerris for the first time in quite a while placing a woman that was not prepared to pay him for his time above one that was perfectly willing to do so. This was due, primarily, to the woman's condition. She'd been incredibly broken in seeming, walking with a limp and bloodied. Now, she seemed to be in better spirits, but nonetheless, the tone she took and her injuries were by no means reassuring him that she was ready to leave his presence.

When Elyna brought up the fact that his evening had been interrupted, the man let a shrug move his shoulders. A light chuckle escaped his lips as he turned his body, moving the chair he was seated in so that he was positioned right next to Elyna. A hand rose to sift through the smooth locks of his own hair as he replied,

"It's quite alright, even if you did, Elyna. Plans are readily replaced with others. I'm more than happy, my dear, to spend my evening with you."

A wink was cast in Elyna's direction as the Mortalborn leaned forward, lips brushing against the lobe of Elyna's ear. A distraction was what he sought to elicit. He wanted her to get from the morose quality that was clinging to her. She had been much happier in their previous encounter, so unburdened of the pain once he had been able to cheer her up. It was, after all, Qaerris' prerogative to ensure that the women in his presence were at ease and in comfort.

Slowly, Qaerris found his fingers moving to place themselves at Elyna's jaw, slowly turning the woman's head to face him properly. A smile cast upon the Mortalborn's expression, a light kiss pressed to the woman's lips before he withdrew,

"No one has to do anything for other people, after all. It was my pleasure, Elyna. Feel free to stay as long as you need to."
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Last edited by Qaerris on Wed Apr 20, 2016 3:13 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 359
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“Not exactly the most exciting evening,” she replied. A faint half-smile tugged at her expression before she looked down, “I’m sure whatever you had planned would have been better than trying to help me clean blood up,” she let out a slow breath and it came more evenly than before.

He moved closer to her and her gaze dropped to the floor. The young woman sighed, tilting her head towards the light brush of his lips. Restless, unsettled and blood still filled with adrenaline. She felt her heart skip beats as he pressed a kiss to her lips. The skyrider didn’t respond to his next comments, at least not with words. Instead she knelt forward and curled her fingers carefully around the nape of his neck and pressed her own kiss against his lips. He had provided a brief distraction, but she wanted more. She wanted to forget the night had ever happened and all the rest of the cycle as well. She wanted to block out the thoughts and the flashes of the dark alleyway that kept returning unwanted and uninvited.

Her bottom lip stung, but she kissed him anyway. Determined to drown in any sensation that was neither pain nor fear.
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