Vacation's Over (Navyri)

The cities and villages of Melrath are as varied and diverse as they come. The capital of Raelia is the the jewel of this western kingdom, playing host to a merchants, artisans, Aesir priests, as well as a cut throat political landscape dominated by the nobles of Raelia. To the south in the depths of the Myrkvior Forest lies Melrath's second largest, and oldest city, Fensalir. Here people have learned to live alongside spirits and the natural world by maintaining their loyalty to traditions laid down the first Melrathi. To the east lies the small fishing village of Noatun, and to the western mountains rests the Mer city of Verimeer, the brewing town of Alivilda and the alpine village Vormund.
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Soren Kvistson
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Re: Vacation's Over (Navyri)

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"You are free to choose,"



He did not smirk at her comment about children, "And they are a weakness. A vulnerability." And then he found himself surprised, watching as Navyri drank her serum as well. He would never have guessed her to do that, not in a million years. Not her, nor any other Naer. She might be the only Naer in history to have done so voluntarily. Unless maybe he knew less about Naer than he thought. Maybe they were immune to such things. Or trained as children to resist them.

He watched her mouth work a bit, seemingly getting used to the serum. He knew the feeling, as though the truth were ready to yank his tongue out like a dog on a rope. And the first thing she said was again, another surprise. She wanted to trust him. He already knew she didn't. He had always assumed Naer, and Navyri, never trusted anyone. Then came the sputtering of words, and either she was a great actress, or for once she wasn't in control of the truth.

It just came out.

She admitted to being a killer as well. Not that he was surprised. Man, he really did have a lot of fairly racist opinions on Naer. Marriage will do that to you. She wanted to trust him. And he was not about to abuse that desire to trust. He didn't need any further proof from her. He wouldn't ask her any questions, not about herself or anything of the sort. She already had gone miles above anything he would've expected.

"Opening a tavern was a moment of opportunity. I've traveled the lands of this world so many times, I decided that I wanted to try something new. To settle down, even if only for a little while. To give it a try. But I'm most certainly not a domestic type, and I'm definitely not looking to retire anytime soon. And from my youth traveling, I knew just how many opportunities rolled through the taverns of any city. Well, less so in Rharne since every building is a tavern, but everywhere else."

And finally, he smiled, a bit of a sly one, "I didn't settle. I was waiting for opportunity. I was waiting for you."

He did have a question for her, though more about himself he thought, one that he was curious about, "Why did you agree to partner with me in the first place? It was risky, pay off dubious, at the time at least, and you do seem to be the type that still has that yearning to travel a lot. Did you settle for me?"


"But you are not free from the consequences."
word count: 458
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Navyri
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Re: Vacation's Over (Navyri)

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Navyri listened to his reasoning. Opening a tavern sounded very much like retirement to her, but she watched the crowd in silence, pleased to not be speaking at the moment. Soren gave a ghost of a smile that drew her side eye, "I was waiting for you."

She snorted, "You, gods, and everything else between. One of many, many, many," Navyri smirked and then sighed wistfully With how wanted she was, it was a miracle she didn't have a bounty in every hold within Idalos, "You know, I never really did see the appeal of Rharne...Everything is loud for my tastes... Although," Navyri was suddenly reminded of Mateo, a brothel boy she had met as a young girl who taught her many tricks, some of which she still employed today, "It has some perks."

She mulled over her next question when Soren offered one of his own. It mirrored hers, "Settle?" Navyri tilted her chin, eyeing him down and then a wicked grin split across her face, "For you? Of course not. But did I?" Navyri shrugged, fighting her smile to a smirk, "You're a mortal. You're a man, I've certainly stood with with more impressive company," Navyri cocked her head in amusement, stepping back to allow a farmer and his cart of produce to pass by, "The day we met, you asked my reasoning. Have you already forgotten?"

It was one of the first things they ever discussed, sitting in his office - Soren had inquired why she responded to his unusual advert, followed by what she wanted in return and she given him a similar answer. Opportunity. Theirs was a straightforward transaction with not so forward answer. Navyri imagined poking fun at his age and memory, but too much lighthearted behavior distracted for the reason they were doing this all in the first place, "I agreed because..."

Her speech had gotten easier and for that she was thankful. It didn't make the message any easier, "It was time to make a choice and I needed to know that I could make it."

She did not elaborate. Perhaps she would, but to talk about Audrae and her issues with Naer culture would only need backstory she didn't have time for. Navyri inhaled and then offering another inquiry, "What is your biggest concern in our partnership and what is something you will never compromise on?"
word count: 402
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Soren Kvistson
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Re: Vacation's Over (Navyri)

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"You are free to choose,"



He nodded at her jest about his memory. He knew she joined for opportunity, but he doubted that it was the only reason. Never was anything done for a single reason. She had been testing herself. But testing herself for what? Why? Clearly that would be a discussion for another day.

He looked around them, up and down the busy street, not so much suspicious of anything, but taking in the surroundings. Here they were, baring their truths to one another, right in the open for anyone to hear. Yet it mattered not. People were always ignorant of things that didn't slap them in the face. Still, Soren felt a bit exposed, self exposed since this was his own doing.

He stood up straighter, proudly carrying his shoulders and height, "My biggest concern is distraction. I do not mean the obvious sorts, a woman here, a journey to a foreign land there. I mean real distractions, that could cause real, irreparable damage. That could be an obsession with a theater house, it could be revenge, it could be focusing too much on money to not see dangers coming. There are so many potential distractions. It is why a partnership is important, more so than a single minded venture. Checks and balances."

His eyes glanced around at the shadows in the various alleyways, under the awnings around them, "I will not compromise on loyalty. Not to me, specifically, but to the agreements we make with one another. You told me that betrayal would not be acceptable, of course. It is the same for me." The truth serum seemed to be bringing out more of his paranoia, or rather, removing the mask he used to hold it in. The entire time she'd been gone, he had always been on the look out for the shadow women, for Sigviind and any of his compatriots, for his ghost, despite the agreement they'd come to.

And it was showing in his wild, tired eyes.

"I am used to a partner who comes and goes as she pleases. Who is independent and can handle herself, while also being a formidable mind to be partnered with. I..."

He rubbed his eyes with the fingers of one hand, that then stroked down the bridge of his nose, accompanying it with a sigh, "I know I asked you before what you wanted. I know the answer you gave me. But as your partner, I must shoot straight with you, and I would hope from the same from you. We could dance in truths and deceits until I die of old age, but you've joined me in this tit-for-tat with one another. What is it you want, now? I assume that it has changed."

He gestured with two open palms around them, "Burn it all down? Fine. But then we be smart about it, we figure it out, and we make it work for us. After all, where's the best place to watch a fire from? Within the coals, surrounded by flames? Or looking down on it from on high, knowing you could piss on it to put it out."

He sighed, looking her directly in the eyes with all the ferocity he could muster, "What is it you want, above all else?"



"But you are not free from the consequences."
word count: 563
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Navyri
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Re: Vacation's Over (Navyri)

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"What do I want?"

Everything. Always.

The word lingered in the forefront of her mind and yet it fell flat when she tried to stitch together the syllables on her tongue. Navyri turned away from Soren and his intensity. She didn't like this question - it was too powerful - to know what someone wanted, truly wanted, was to have a semblance of control over them but for how long could he hoard it over her? Was there harm if what she desired was something he would never be able to give her? "Right now I want to you to ask a different question," a sardonic, sad smile weighed heavy on her lips, but there was a bitterness there. A fury in her eyes that sparked when he spoke of fires and revenge. More than anything when he dared suggest she wouldn't be smart about it, "I'm inclined to deny this request and every one after, after you've insulted me so."

But...

What did she want?

What did she want?


The question burned her, nearly doubling her over in its physical demand. She tried to speak but her mouth had gone dry, every answer felt like ash on her tongue, they did not satiate her. Nels were nothing. For so long she had thought it was to return home, but to where? To who? She wanted things she couldn't have. She wanted things she had not seen. Had her soul always been so vacuous or was this voracity, this hunger, something Delroth had planted so very long ago? It cut her. Subdued her. Enraged her.

Navyri did not speak, not for some time. Wasted opportunity, given Soren's own offer of limited answers. Finally, she found her voice, a single note of lost hope,

"I want to know that the discontentment I feel every trial has an end without my life following it,
she paused and then heaved a great sigh, some of her aggitation breaking through, "I hate this question, I hate it!"

She looked as if she felt physical pain. Maybe she did, "I thought that meant family, I thought it meant power, wealth, experience, religion, stability,...I've pushed myself, I've worked hard and yet there is no solution to that desire. I am never satisfied," she snorted in derision, swirling the distaste on her tongue. The thought of wanting something as basic as happiness... the poison of contentment absolutely sickened her, "Am I damned to be so pathetic at my core? And after everything..."

Navyri was suddenly given a memory and repeated the words of her mother with the same vehement disgust and sting she remembered arcs ago, "What a disgraceful waste of talent."

She no longer felt relief in being back, desiring now only to crawl somewhere very dark to rest. One cup of coffee hadn't been nearly enough and even the thought of hurting Melrath and its people suddenly made her tired, "If this is to be our last meeting, what should happen to the theater? I would like to see it. Just from the outside. I have no more questions."
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Pig Boy
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Re: Vacation's Over (Navyri)

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Navyri

Experience: 15 no magic xp

Knowledge:

Stealth x7
Business Management x5

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Skill Usage: Appropriate to level

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Injuries/Conditions: none

Consequences: none
Soren

Experience: 15 no magic xp

Knowledge: none requested

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Consequences: One of Sigviind's spies overhears Soren's confessions to Navyri, and will possibly pass it on to the man himself so he can use it against him. Do with this consequence what you will.
Comments: This was an interesting reunion. I remember reading this bit, but I almost forgot about the confession Soren made, that he killed his wife in cold blood. He's such a psychopath! But interesting all the same.

Navyri's reactions to this psychopath are pretty well in line with what you'd expect of any reasonable person who's nevertheless taken in by his charm. It was a fine line for her to tread, between admiration and revulsion and frustration. I wonder if she'll ever get the chance to settle up with him?

I particularly enjoyed the questions she chose to ask Soren as he was under the influence. Burning a bridge without regret was a very telling one, and I'll have to remember it for my own use. The question when she asked what he wouldn't compromise was possibly a landmine for Soren, but one he handled somewhat adroitly. If I'm allowed a tinge of bias, I hope Navyri doesn't trust this man if he shows up in her life again. Then again, if she did, that could make for an interesting story too!

If you have any concerns about this review, please PM me about them.
word count: 289
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