* OPEN * A Curious Celebration?

30th of Cylus 720

Almund is a thriving township with a dark side. With houses made from the wooden bodies of decommissioned ships, there are many opportunities here, coupled with many dangers.

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Nir'wei
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A Curious Celebration?

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30th of Cylus, 720.

"Status report." The room would have been spacious, were the floor not overcrowded with the Councillor's personal menagerie. What could even fit inside the room at all, that was. If Wesley found it at all distasteful, he had a knack for schooling his expression to the point that even his voice carried no trace of it. At least he was now comfortable enough to stand among the beasts instead of on the far end of the room when reading the daily reports.

"The Light Sky Festival is tonight." No idea. "The Menagerie is once again growing concerned about the dropping native Enormowl population." The third time they'd reiterated it. "Two sailors didn't turn up to their shifts this morning, and their clothes were found on the shore; likely the work of Drowners, it's believed." Irrelevant! "There are concerns rising about Skullgulls being vectors for a particular strain of diseases affecting-- uhh, sir?" Wesley stopped when he found Nir'wei's hands pressed against his face and a scowl pushing at his lips.

"How the bleeding Tio did the previous Councillor manage all of this." It felt like every day there was something else that needed addressing; populations were overgrowing and out of control, or disappearing off the face of Idalos; the Menagerie was understaffed, needed more space, and overworked by the Elements; sailors were terrorised in the oceans, or crops were failing, or hunters starving, or beasts murdering, or something, or something, or something. Strange as it might seem, he was only one man! The only thing that even came close to an actual staff were either the small office worth of people working in the next room over, or the Menagerie - and even that, at the moment, boiled down to barely more than caretakers and withered ex-soldiers.

It wasn't just a lack of manpower slowing all of this down, either. "Skullgulls; does the University even understand what the Skullgulls are? Shouldn't they be the one handling something like this?"

"Well, I'd imagine that if they did, they would have taken care of it already." Wesley frowned pointedly at his sheet. "Seems that lacking anything to go on, they've passed responsibility to you."

Nir'wei couldn't stop a roll of his eyes, and Greyhide gave an equally-exasperated huff from his place at his feet. "I don't have a research facility, much as I would love one. Nor do I have anyone to man it, let alone someone with the skill to do a competent job of it. The Menagerie has a fulltime dedication to maintaining the mounts of the Troops, a quite crucial role if I must be honest, and even that they're understaffed in, so I can't in good conscience pass this onto any of them... honestly, I don't know what they expect. I just don't."

So many blurred lines. The Militant, the Academic, the Trainer, even the Merchant to some degree had their part to say in his affairs, yet ofttimes he felt like an almost unofficial position. He'd run unopposed, after all - the position had remained mostly empty, partially due to a lack of a suitable candidate to fill it, he presumed, but... had that absence not proved, at least in part, that the position wasn't particularly necessary at all, if it could remain dormant for such a long time? But then, they all had something of their own. The Merchant of course held the Merchant's Guild, the Militant commanded the Elements, the Academic had free run of an entire university, filled with lecturers, scholars, students and bright minds. He had a single office and entirely far too much work on his hands. "I need... I need something."

Wesley frowned and took a step forward, shuffling several pages around in his hands. "Sir?"

"I need something important, but I need something... something mysterious and odd. Any attacks or infringements by Bumble Bears or Grizzly Bees? Has the Ishkahl been sighted in the past few trials?"

"Well, no," Wesley replied with a quick glance through his assortment of notes. "I'm not really sure what you're... hmm, well, come to think of it, there was a second sighting recently of those strange... things. A dog, perhaps even a wolf, but made of vegetation. It spooked some hunters and vanished without a trace, they couldn't even find footprints." The first sightings he'd outright dismissed as idiocy, not least because other sightings had sparked afterwards of wolves made of ice, and fire, and ghost wolves - it seemed like a fairytale, and their high rarity only fortified the sentiment. "Sir, you're thinking of hunting them?" There was no mistaking the casual glance towards the four wolves already sprawled loosely about the room - or the sly curl of the corner of his mouth. "Shall I prepare another bed?"

"No." Nir'wei leaned forwards and propped his chin on both entwined fists. "I need Gwynevere, Tylar, and Tel'wehn. I'd like the full details of the sighting, the names and addresses of the hunters that saw it and the full accounts of all the other sightings related to these elemental canines. Tell Marcus I won't be accepting any further callers for the day, and... have Silk ready for an outing for the Light Sky Festival. Whatever she thinks necessary."

His assistant's eyebrow had the gall to raise a quarter-inch in surprise, but he said nothing and disappeared, replaced not a moment later by his Administrative Assistant, Second-in-Command, and Political Adviser in turn, each with their own entirely unique looks of curiosity and shock. "I want to put together a team," he said, first turning to Gwynevere. "In quiet; no putting up posters around like I'm bloody desperate or something." A round of light chuckles earned a sleepy yawn from Squeak nearby. "I want background work done for serious contenders and I want personal invitations for a meeting during the Light Sky Festival sent to them. Anyone that's gone for a bounty, this season or last season. They all meet near the Kennels." The question coming soon was already anticipated. "Tylar. I need preparations done. If this expedition goes well... I want certification put in place. Those that do well in this need to be rewarded, and we need a way to keep them in contact for future work. Or perhaps a new employ under Natural Affairs..."

Tylar barked a sudden laugh. "You're gonna chase after rare unknown species and call it an interview?" Nir'wei only grinned. "Tel, what'cha brewing on this, huh? You've been silent as a startled goat."

She had a look of intense concern and focus that Nir'wei had to repeatedly tell himself didn't look like constipation, even though it really, really did. "It's a stretch, you know? Risky, without consulting the Albarech for funding and budget allocations first. Plus, meetings with the Militant, the Academic... I can see where you're going with this, I can, but if you start providing official roles that infringe on their territories, you're going to start rubbing the wrong elbows."

Nir'wei mulled it. Visiting Kura would be nice, and he did hate to infringe. "I'll set something up afterwards. There's nothing saying we can't make all the necessary preparations beforehand, in case of the all-clear, and then just hold onto it, right?" Tel'wehn nodded in agreement. "Excellent. I'll let you all get on with it then, because it sounds like we've all got a very busy day ahead of us."
 ! Message from: Nir'wei
So, from this point, anyone who wants to join can either assume that they have been sent a sealed letter from the Council of Natural Affairs, offering them an unspecified opportunity at a rare and unique bounty, and to meet at the Kennels if they're interested, if they have completed a bounty in the last two seasons...
... or just drop by, happening to follow a friend, or just completely out of the blue. Up to you!
word count: 1367
We return to where we started, and pass onwards into history.
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Darius Baer Bottom
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

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Arc 720, 30th of Cylus
Darius Baer was not the sort of person who received a lot of mail.

That was not to say he could not read, of course. His ability to understand the written word had served him well, and he knew his letters. But much of his life had been spent at sea, where he was just as likely to receive a letter as he was a calm squall upon the Hollow Sea.

So it came as something of a surprise when a letter arrived with a very official looking seal. There was no question that it was for him - his name and address were written on the front - but he was cautious when opening it all the same, because he couldn't understand why the Council Of Natural Affairs would want to contact him.

When he read the letter, his heart leapt with excitement. He had been invited on a hunt of sorts; some kind of elemental wolf had been spotted, and he was being tasked with tracking it down.

He realised, then, that someone must have heard of his efforts to spot the Cylus Owl, and he set off to find his companion. Oram was a better hunter than he was, and he deserved more of the credit for their Cylus Owl expedition. The poor fellow wasn't a great reader, though, and Darius didn't want him to miss out on account of not being able to understand the scribbles on a piece of parchment.

It took some effort to track the man down, but Darius was eventually able to explain the opportunity to Oram, and they agreed to make their own way to the city of Almund.

Darius had not been to the capital before. He had passed it on sea journeys between Scalvoris Town and Viden, but the city of ship-houses was largely unfamiliar to him. But he had arrived, courtesy of a captain he knew and a trial's worth of hard labour during the journey.

After receiving directions from a helpful local, the bearded blond made his way into The Kennel, letter in hand.
Last edited by Darius Baer Bottom on Mon May 11, 2020 11:54 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 355
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Balthazar Black
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Re: A Curious Celebration?


28 Cylus 720
Balthazar hadn't planned on taking another ship back to Almund while he was working with the Elements in Scalvoris town but destiny- or fate (very thin difference)- had other ideas for him. Balthazar was sitting with his legs crossed in the room he'd been renting from a local tavern, trying to shift through his own frequency to familiarize himself with his own notes. It was remarkably easier to listen in on oneself than it was to listen to others- especially because he was not all that familiar with even his own notes. He listened to the song of his soul and over time began to pick out the notes within it- but labeling what made them what they were was not a simple task by any means. It was easier to decipher the notes that told him facts about himself he already knew.

Finding the notes of humanity, mortality (Balthazar was somewhat disheartened to discover he was not born of an Immortal but it was nothing new to him), and magic within his frequency provided Balthazar. Balthazar spent longer shifting through the notes of magic that he heard than the former two notes because it was not a single note within himself but three. Defiance, Rupture, and Attunement. The Rupture spark produced a faster rhythm than the others and threatened to throw the frequency off tempo, but the Attunement note seemed to reign it into balance. The Defiance note sounded... well the only was Balthazar could think to describe it was to say it sounded hot. It was definitely a tune he could tap his foot to. These effort provided Balthazar with a baseline (his most obvious traits) before he delved a little deeper into gender to investigate something he found odd. The notes of masculinity were there for sure but they were not as prominent as the notes indicating he was a mage. Balthazar did know whether to be insulted by that or enlightened. Maybe it factored into why he let his hair grow so long? No that was mere laziness. Laziness. Balthazar began to wonder if he could detect that in his spark when the letter from Isabella had arrived.

Well it was not a letter from Isabella but she had forwarded it to him from Almund. It was Nir'Wei's letter for aid. Balthazar read it over once, paid what he owed for his room, and set off to Almund. He didn't recognize the name immediately but if someone needed help and was willing to pay, Balthazar would offer it. Admittedly his attention had been grabbed by the term 'elemental' when he read it. There wasn't much to go on beyond that, the letter did not describe the wolves that had been spotted already, but Isabella (Balthazar assumed it was her due to the different color of ink) had underlined the word to be sure that Balthazar saw it. He could get behind elemental wolves- and Isabella was a dog person anyways... some seasons. Other seasons she seemed to prefer cats. Balthazar didn't even make the connection that he'd been sent the letter for his efforts solving the Nellies trouble.

He'd convinced a captain to let him work aboard the ship for the journey as Balthazar was developing a habit of doing and was back in Almund promptly. Stepping off the ship, he was assaulted with a plethora of smells and sounds that you didn't get to experience in Scalvoris Town. The unique frequency of Almund. It was somewhat like Yaralon in practice but Balthazar had not been to Yaralon since his initiation so he didn't know what it's frequency was like exactly.

All the same the letter did what it was meant to do and before the sun had set on the 30th trial of Cylus, Balthazar was standing at the Kennels, looking around for someone to direct him where to go next.
word count: 661

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Nir'wei
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

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Wesley stood just to the side of the door, waiting for Darius and Balthazar with a polite smile and a gesture towards a round table, lined with rickety wooden chairs. "We will begin the briefing in a moment; in the meantime, please, take a seat." Dressed smartly in a buttoned jacket and trousers with a small notepad tucked into his pocket, Wesley carefully toed the line between distinctly formal and painfully ordinary well, offering practiced smiles and nods until he realised that nobody else would be coming for the time being - and only then did a slight crack in his facade appear, in a displeased frown. "Well then, I suppose introductions are in order," he eventually announced, taking his own seat, opening the floor to let the others introduce themselves before began his own.

"You may call me Wesley. I am the Councillor's personal aide, and I will be the one overseeing this expedition." Of course he wouldn't actually, but this was the script that he'd prepared beforehand; the one tucked into that little notebook of his. "While the Councillor holds this expedition of significant importance, I can assure you, he's also currently unavailable to make a personal appearance, but I will be acting as a direct contact for you both, should there be any requirements or queries to put to him." Wesley's polite smile grew just an inch wider. "He has also arranged for a guide, that he believes will be of some assistance to you both. Since you are tracking wolves, he believed a wolf of your own would be most appropriate."

At the verbal cue, a wolf walked from behind the bar and padded towards them, sitting on its haunches and studying them with bright eyes. Nir'weis Form of the Wolf wasn't something he'd been all too eager to return to, since mere bits of it came with the bitter reminder of what it was to live without hands, but if he was to remain inconspicuous even through days of wilderness hunting, he couldn't afford to rely solely on the Charm of Anonymity. "This is Bishop," Wesley continued with a gesture towards the wolf. "Don't worry, he can take care of himself and won't be causing any trouble; he's very well trained." At the praise, Nir let his tongue droop from his mouth and started to pant, just to add to the canine facade a little more. Wesley must have had a funnybone of steel to not laugh at the sight, since he was one of the very few that actually knew who was under the fur.

"The Councillor has also allowed me to disclose with you that Bishop is one of his Eyes - that is, the two share a special mental link that will allow the Councillor to see everything that Bishop does." Wesley sat a little straighter. "While we have no reason to believe this creature is particularly dangerous... there's also no telling what exactly you might end up finding, so consider him a lifeline in case you're in need of aid." Another important little lie to cover any spontaneous manifestations, or worse.

"Now... is there anything else, before I begin with the briefing proper?" he asked, already in the middle of withdrawing his notepad from his pocket.
word count: 557
We return to where we started, and pass onwards into history.
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Oram Mednix
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

*snore* zzzzz-Wuzzat? Post? Oh, yeah, sorry. Here.

For various reasons, Oram Mednix did not get much mail; a letter from the “Council of Natural Affairs” sounded almost like a prank. But anybody who knew Oram wouldn’t play a prank on him in the form of a written letter, and anybody who didn’t know him had no reason to play a prank on him at all. The very oddity of it suggested to him that it was probably the real thing, and Osric upon examining the letter seemed convinced enough of its authenticity, even if he had no better idea than Oram why he was receiving it. His brother had insisted on getting the traveler’s permission before breaking the seal and reading the contents for some reason. Oram didn’t really see why it was so important, but apparently it was. Some sort of law.

The contents intrigued him. A rare and unique bounty? Well, that sounded interesting, and he could always do with earning a few more nels. And when Darius Baer had found him and told him about having received a similar letter, that sealed his decision to go to Almund. He agreed to meet Darius there -if he could, for the snow and cold had made even the short journey to Almund all but impossible.

That left traveling by boat. A combination of proceeds from shearing Wether’s weird rainbow-colored hair and an offer to trap rats during the trip (ships almost always had rat problems) was enough to pay for passage.

And thus it was that he stumbled belatedly into a room in which he found Balthazar and Darius. Darius he had expected to be here, but he was somewhat surprised to run into Balthazar again. The functionary he did not know.

He also did not know the wolf, and he tensed up when he saw it. Oram knew what wolves were like in the wild; one had to be wary of them and treat them with respect, but he knew they didn’t entirely deserve the sinister reputation they had. If anything, he was less troubled by wolves than dogs. But that didn’t mean he wasn’t surprised and a bit uncomfortable upon suddenly finding himself in a closed space with one. Without taking his eye off the beast, he moved slowly and sat down carefully next to Darius.

”I’m Oram Mednix,” he said to Wesley. ”I came as soon as I could manage. Have I missed anything important?” He looked between Balthazar and Darius, hoping they would fill him in in case the officer did not feel like repeating himself. Busy townies often resented such things for some reason.
word count: 451
Villains are powerless against story beats.
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Darius Baer Bottom
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

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Darius was beginning to get impatient. He’d agreed to meet Oram at The Kennel, but the trapper was nowhere to be seen. He cast his gaze about the place, and recognised someone else instead.

”Balthazar,” he greeted the man with a polite grin, offering his hand as he sat down. ”I trust you are well?”

He didn’t put much effort into listening to the man’s answer. He found he was too busy looking over his shoulder towards the door. Oram was not making a good first impression on the Council Of Natural Affairs, he was sure.

He spun back around in his seat when Wesley began to speak, and the displeasure that the man attempted to mask was visible, even if only for a moment. Darius wondered if there were others who had received letters but who – like Oram – appeared to have spurned the opportunity.

The seafarer introduced himself when invited to do so, simply explaining that he had received the letter and was eager to do whatever he could to help. He leaned back in his seat somewhat unconsciously when the wolf appeared, and he tried to avoid making eye contact, but such things were difficult to achieve, and he caught sight of the creature’s bright eyes more than once.

The sound of the door opening drew his attention, and he watched as Oram belatedly joined them and took a seat. Darius tried, with little success, to avoid sending the man a sharp stare.

"You're late," he grunted in something that was part hiss and part growl. "Fella's name is Wesley, and the animal's called Bishop."

Even his impatience couldn’t prevent him from sending the canine a wary glance.

"Oram," he whispered, his tone slowly beginning to calm, "first impressions matter."

And he worried that they had not made a good one.
word count: 311
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Balthazar Black
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Re: A Curious Celebration?


28 Cylus 720
Balthazar was lead a room and a seat, a lead which he took with no qualms or argument. As with all great adventures, one had to learn where they were going first and this was the time for that. Darius was practically the only other person in the room and when he greeted Balthazar, the mage shook his offered hand and responded. "Well enough, I suppose." It was a short response that betrayed nothing more than the fact that these trials were dark ones.

Balthazar watched the joy seep from Wesley as he realized that no one else would be joining them. There was a call to introduce yourselves to the group. Wesley introduced himself to which Balthazar responded with an acknowledging nod. Then he turned his head towards Darius, a man he encountered more than enough this season already. Yet it was when the wolf entered the room that the first significant response from Balthazar was given. His eyes widened, he sat up a little straighter in his chair, and his right hand balled into a fist as if preparing for an incoming attack... but no attack came. The wolf just sauntered in and sat down. Very well trained indeed.

Balthazar eyed the wolf known as Bishop, curiosity driving him to try and attune to the beast but there was far more going on within the wolf's frequency than Balthazar had expected there to be. It was more complex... and so rather than try to deduce why that was, Balthazar refocused on the meeting at hand and Wesley's explanation for the Bishop's presence. It made sense from a certain perspective and Balthazar wouldn't turn down help unless it tried to bite his face off in the night... then they'd have issues.

Oram arrived late to the party but Balthazar didn't mind. It wasn't a great first impression but hey, navigating the city was difficult sometimes. It helped that Balthazar had also met Oram before when he sought to investigate the disappearing children in Almund. Though admittedly this made Balthazar remember how Oram had fled from the swarm of undead insects and it soured his opinion slightly. But he tried to hide it by saying "Regardless of timing, I'm glad to have the help." And he would leave it at that. While the two in the room knew him, hells the wolf in the room knew him as well, Balthazar was aware of the fact that Wesley did not and so he introduced himself regardless.

"I'm Balthazar, a thrice initiated mage of some skill looking to lend a hand." He only pointed out that he'd been initiated into three magics because it had happened recently and he was proud of his ability to survive it... in later trials he would stop mentioning that part.
word count: 477

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Nir'wei
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

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There might have been a slight twinge - the barest hint of displeasure in Wesley's gaze as the door swung open and a disheveled man plowed into the meeting room. Such interruptions was the unfortunate inevitability of hosting in a public environment, but the announcement of his name was enough to immediately restore that small, polite smile of his. Another name from the invitation list. Frankly, though none of them would ever admit it, they were quite lucky to have three people reply to the letters they sent to the public. As a new department, they still lacked the influence of larger offices like the Militant could draw upon at any time. "It's quite alright. I was just about to begin the proper." Waiting for Oram to take his seat and the introductions to swiftly conclude, he slipped a small brown notepad and flicked it open with his thumb.

"Limited sightings have been reported on an animal, believed to be some kind of large dog or wolf, appearing out of nowhere in the middle of the Scaltoth Jungle. Its fur was green and covered in vines - a Plant Wolf, he called it - and it disappeared without leaving a trace. The most recent sighting was a hunter and his son, called Verth and Maika, living in Havardr; they wrote to us after stumbling across one of these things during a day out at work and they wanted to know whether it was dangerous or not. As of right now, we don't know. Going back through previous records from the last Councillor of Natural Affairs, and all the other documents currently available to us, there were no sightings of these things prior to two arcs ago. Which means that either they have, for whatever reason, begun to magically appear around Scalvoris in response to a recent change... or they are being artificially manufactured."

Wesley snapped the notebook shut again, signalling the end of the 'information' portion of the briefing, but for once his smart and punctual posture softened somewhat. "This is highly important. The Councillor has witnessed first-hand the battles currently raging in Rharne, as we speak. Creatures called Flameborn, giant, twisted beasts tainted with fire attack anything that breathes and lay waste to entire fortified castles and all of the soldiers protecting it. Whatever these things are, whatever reason they're here... they need to be treated with extreme caution. They need to be found. And whatever is creating them needs to be stopped and put to rest, if needs be, before these things start causing untold damage." Wesley turned to each of them in turn before straightening and returning that polite, simple smile to his face as if it had never left.

"If you have any questions, I will do my best to answer them. If you have any requests for supplies, let me know or write a list; I will do my best to accommodate them, within reason... and if you have any further leads that you would like myself to follow up, on behalf of the Office of Natural Affairs, please let me know." Nir'wei glanced between the three, settling on Balthazar and Oram slightly longer than normal. Oram wasn't a particularly reliable sort, but his presence counted for something. Balthazar had a good head on his shoulders, he'd make for a fine addition... Darius was still an outlier, but he took things seriously. Granted, he'd only been in the room with them for a short period, but this was already shaping up nicely. Now, the only question was how much use they would make of everything offered.

Suddenly, Wesley jumped. "Oh, yes. Bishop." Hang on, had he forgotten the wolf was even there?! "Go on, lie down somewhere." Despite knowing who was under all that fur, a large wolf sat in the middle of a room was still an uncomfortable presence, it seemed. He feigned a growl, showing off some yellow fangs, and stubbornly laid down on his belly where he was. He wanted to see what they were doing! "Go on, get," Wesley insisted, to no avail. "He's well-trained, I promise. He just has his moments."
word count: 699
We return to where we started, and pass onwards into history.
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Oram Mednix
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

Making lupus out of lupines?

Oram shot Darius an annoyed look when the man spoke. First impressions? What did that comment even mean? The traveler had come as soon as he could; it wasn’t as if this place had been within convenient walking distance of his camp. Now was not the time, though, and in any case he was not about to quarrel with the one friendly face in the room, so he let it go.

The story Wesley told intrigued him. Like any hunter, Oram enjoyed hearing about sightings of strange animals, whether these turned out to be true or not. A plant wolf? A wolf formed out of vegetation? Maybe the hunters had simply seen a regular wolf trailing a bunch of vines? Seemed at least as likely as some mad wizard making critters out of plants. But the townies were sufficiently spooked by the reports to want to get to the bottom of them, and were willing to pay folks like Oram Mednix to do it for them. That was good enough for this traveler.

Wesley asked the group if they had any questions, then tried to shoo the wolf that had suddenly decided to stir. Bishop wasn’t having it, apparently. Oram, wary though he was of the creature, felt a twinge of amusement at the clerk’s plight. Through that, he tried to think about the man had just told them. A creature seemingly from the jungle showing up near Havardr? That was certainly not usual.

”Are these hunters in Havardr the only ones who’ve seen this thing outside of the jungle, or are there others that you know of?” It might not even be the same critter, after all. ”And is there anything else you can tell us about these two? The father and son? Because I reckon we should talk to them first.”

word count: 312
Villains are powerless against story beats.
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Shl'Drei
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Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:38 pm
Race: Human
Profession: Animal Trainer
Renown: 170
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Re: A Curious Celebration?

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It had taken a considerably long time to get things ready; preparations were of some importance despite the obvious hustle he tried to maintain. He'd only visit certain places and spent most of his time in the woods, so it was understandable - he hoped - that time alluded him at times, especially when getting to new places. Almund was definitely a trip from Sweetwine Woods, and arranging transportation and such wasn't cheap. Still, the dirty blond was in the process of establishing himself and if there was something he had seen or heard that intrigued him and had possible loot he went for it. Even in the midst of travel he was still unforgivably late. His.. mentor? He wasn't sure, had mentioned something interesting and he'd wanted to check it out.

Apparently there was an investigation happening of strange animals that seemed to have an affinity to the elements. Fro what he knew there wasn't much information, and no way to connect the dots without further research. There was no real reason he was seeking the information- it was all just a whim based on his curiosity. When the head ranger of Sweetwine mentioned it passing, he figured it was worth a shot. He planned to be a hunter, as such learning about new animals was of some importance. Local fauna would soon be his business so he needed to know as much as he possibly could. He was late though. Because of the nature of the trip his preparation consisted of making sure his animal companions were in shape to care for themselves. They were still not entirely adapted to the area and Shl'Drei was growing concerned, no, was concerned that him being gone would stress them out. He forced himself past that though, because he was needed and he was curious.

When he arrived at the kennel most everyone was gathered elsewhere, and in his exhausted state he groaned. He huffed, trying to get his breathing under control as he made to join up with the others and catch what little information he could from the remaining briefing time. He was late, so so late, and if he entered now he was sure to have eyes on him but he couldn't turn back now that he'd come this far. He'd run here from the touch down with what little direction the people could give him. So he walked in as if nothing was wrong despite the obvious lack of breath. And if he thought the his first trip to his home in the woods was harsh then he had clearly been wrong.

If the ranger had told anyone he was coming, she made no mention of it. Going in he assumed he would be a... unaccounted for, guest. Without a list with his name on it the most he could say was his name breathlessly. If all attention would ignore him he'd be grateful but with four men and a dog - wolf, that was a wolf - he almost begun to think he was early. There were so little people, wasn't this an official expedition? Suddenly conscious of the eyes on him he tilted his head downward in an attempt to appear smaller despite his large frame. He turned his head to the one who seemed to be leading the briefing. "Apologies for the late arrival, getting here took longer than expected."

His face flushed slightly from the exertion but he was slowly regaining himself. By the looks of things the briefing was just about over and he realized belatedly that he had probably missed out on information. Hopefully one of the men would take pity on him sometime before the trip and recount the details, until then he would stay quiet and listen to what little information he could hear from the remaining time.
word count: 646
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