• Solo • Tentative Steps

1st of Cylus 721

Seated on the shores of Lake Lovalus, Rharne serves as the home of the Lighting Knights, the Thunder Priestesses, and the Merchant's guild. This beautiful trade city is filled with a happy and contented people who rarely need an excuse to party.

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Seira Shiryu
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Tentative Steps

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1st Cylus, 721


They weren't Lightning Knight Initiates anymore. That door had been closed the trial they learned that even as Support Knights they would be expected to be fighters first. Neither Seira nor Seri were prepared to accept that. So that path was closed to them. The problem was that Seira wasn't sure where that left them. And when she and Seri had talked about it, Seri had admitted that she didn't know either. But they were going to be adults soon, and they needed something to do for a living. That need was what had prompted them to shut themselves in Seira's room, and settle in for a planning session.

"We enjoyed volunteering for the Order of Adunih that one time before we joined the Lightning Knights." Seira said when she realized that Seri was waiting for her to begin the "meeting."

"And it was interesting to learn about different remedies and such when we were trying to be useful at Storm's Edge."

Seri nodded.

"It was interesting, yes. But I can't really see myself as being a healer and treating patients for a living. At least not just that. Even if we aren't going to be Knights ourselves, I'd like to find a way to help them in some way if we can."

It was Seira's turn to nod.

"I feel the same way. I still want to see if we can find a way for the Knights to be able to use herbs as a weapon, among other things. It would be a lot safer for them if they had a way of stopping a fight before it could start. And if they had something that could burst on contact if thrown at an enemy that would have the enemy too busy sneezing, or falling asleep, or...something...I think that would be a big help to them at times. So what if we volunteer at the Order of Adunih clinic in the Dust Quarter for a while until we can figure something else out? Maybe they will let us read some of their books about herbs and herbal remedies on trials that we volunteer for them."

"What would we tell them, though?" Seri asked.

"What do you mean?"

"Would they want people who weren't a part of the Order working for them? What if they expected us to join the Order? I don't think I want to do that..."

"They let us volunteer for them before, so I think it would be okay. If they did ask, we could tell them that we are interested in learning about herbs and herbal remedies, and that we want to do something meaningful until we figure out what we want to do for a living. That is the truth, after all."

"You're right. And it's not like we'd be asking them to pay us, or anything. We'd be volunteering."

Seira nodded.

"Exactly."

With that decided, Seira and Seri called their "meeting" to an end, and made their way to the Order of Adunih clinic in the Dust Quarter.



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Seira Shiryu
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Re: Tentative Steps

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When they reached the Order of Adunih clinic in the Dust Quarter, Seira started looking for someone they could talk to about volunteering. It didn't take long before she found a woman wearing a blue cloak.

"Hi. My name is Seira Shiryu, and this is my sister, Seriel. Who can we talk to about volunteering here?"

The woman smiled at the twins.

"You can talk to me. My name is Chiara, and any willing pair of hands will be put to good use here. Do you have any medical experience at all?"

"A little. We know how to make a number of herbal remedies; specifically infused oils, salves, lotions, and balms. Seriel and I also know what elder flowers and elderberries, eucalyptus, feverfew, lavender, sage, and willow bark can be used to treat. And we can help sort through herb stores because we how to tell if dried herbs are fresh or if they're close to expiring." Seira offered eagerly.

Chiara chuckled.

"I'm guessing that the two of you have an interest in herbs?"

The twins nodded.

"Well, I think we can work with that. I was just about to check our supplies for old herbs now, and I'd be happy for some help."

Chiara led the twins over to where they stored the herbs.

"You can start at that end, and I will start at this one. How does that sound?"

"We can do that." Seira said as she and Seri moved over to the side that Chiara was pointing at.

"If you have any questions about whether an herb is okay to use or not, set it aside, and ask me before you toss it. While you're sorting through the herbs, I would like you to put the older ones in front so that they get used up first."

Seira and Seri nodded again. They had done this sort of thing at Storm's Edge, so Seira was confident that they would be able to do it now. For a while, the three of them worked in silence. Every so often, Seira and Seri saw Chiara watching them to make sure that they were doing the job correctly. It made sense that she would do so; Chiara didn't know that they really knew what they were doing, after all. Seira just hoped that when they proved that they could be trusted to do this on their own they would be.

"So you're interested in learning how to make herbal remedies...would you like to learn about some more while we work?"

Seira's and Seri's eyes lit up in interest.

"We'd love to." they said in unison.

Chiara laughed.

"Okay. So most of the herbal remedies you know about so far are used topically. But there are remedies that can be consumed as well. Take herbal teas for example. Herbal teas are also called tisanes. They are a beverage that is made from plants, seeds, flowers, roots or fruits of all plants except for actual tea leaves. Herbal teas are warm, and soothing to drink; that alone can give some comfort to someone who is ill. They can also be used topically as a wash or a bath. That makes them one of the more versatile remedies at our disposal."

Seira paid close attention to Chiara's words as she worked. So much so that her progress slowed greatly, and she found herself having to stop and check what she was doing a lot. But it was worth it to her if it meant learning something new. She just hoped that Chiara wouldn't get frustrated with her and stop teaching her if she couldn't listen and work at the same time effectively.

"How do you make herbal teas?" Seri asked.

It was a good question. Seira knew how to make a cup of tea in theory...even if she was far from a good cook. But were herbal teas made the same way that other teas were?

"Making herbal teas is easy. Teas are made by pouring boiling water over the dried herb or blend of herbs that is being used, and allowing it to steep for anywhere from five to twenty bits before straining the liquid and giving it to the patient. You can use fresh herbs instead of dried herbs to make herbal teas as well. If you are using fresh herbs, you would want to steep them in boiling water for five to ten bits, not twenty. The longer you steep the herbs, the stronger the tea will be."

Again, Seira paid very close attention to what Chiara was telling her. She wished that she had some paper so she could take notes, but that wasn't really something she could do while she was working. So she simply did her best to commit the information to memory.

"Oh, and there's one more thing. With some herbs, you will want to use warm water or hot water instead of boiling water when making tea with them."

They worked in silence for a while after that. When they had finished checking the herbs in one storage room, Chiara led the girls to another storage area. Once there, she gestured for the twins to start at one end while she started at the other. Seira noticed that this time, the blue cloaked healer wasn't watching them as closely. It made Seira feel good to know that Chiara trusted her to know what she was doing...somewhat, at least.

"Herbal infusions are similar to herbal teas in the way they are consumed, but they are stronger than normal teas are because you use more herbs to make them. They are steeped for longer amounts of time as well."

"How many herbs would you use to make an infusion?" Seira asked.

"How long would you steep an infusion for?" Seri asked a trill later.

Chiara chuckled.

"For the first question, that depends on whether you are using dried herbs or fresh ones. You would want to use either two ounces of fresh herbs, or two generous handfuls of dried herbs to make an infusion. The herbs would be placed into a glass jar, and then you would pour a pint of water over them. It is important that the herbs are completely covered by the water. The water and herbs are then left to steep overnight."

Seira nodded to show that she understood when Chiara looked at her.

"In a pinch, they can be allowed to steep for less time than that, but they must be allowed to steep for at least four breaks for the infusion to be effective. Longer is better. Ten breaks, or overnight is ideal. Once the mixture has finished steeping, it must be strained. You can use a strainer or a cheesecloth for that."

Seri nodded this time. Seira was too busy trying to commit the information she had just learned to memory.

"If you need large quantities of an infusion, you can use a cup of dried herbs in a quart of water. This must be left to steep over night though. Once the infusion has been made, individual portions can then be heated for use as needed."

"So the difference between an herbal tea and an infusion is how strong a remedy they are?" Seira asked carefully.

Chiara nodded.

"That, the amount of herbs that is used to make them, and the amount of time that they need to be steeped." she replied.

"Thank you for being willing to teach us, Chiara."

"I'm happy to teach someone who is interested in what I do. Thank you for volunteering to help us."

They finished sorting through the rest of the herbs in silence.



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Seira Shiryu
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"Chiara?"

Seira and Seri watched as the older woman looked around to see who had called her. It was a young girl who looked even younger than the twins were. She was wearing a green cloak that did not have a hood.

"Yea Ali?"

"Can I speak to you for a trill?"

Seira realized that the girl needed to speak about a patient from the way she kept eying both her and Seri anxiously. Not wanting to cause any problems, she smiled at the two healers and moved far enough away that she wouldn't be able to hear what was said. It took Seri a few trills longer to catch on, but when she did, she joined Seira.

The healers spoke to each other for a few bits before the younger girl hurried off, and Chiara approached them.

"One of our patients has a fever, and I need to make a remedy that will help him. I can't let you make it, but you are welcome to watch me make it if you'd like. That way you can watch an herbal tea being made as well as hearing me explain it."

"I'd like that." Seire said softly.

"Me too." Seri added a few trills later.

Chiara went to get the herbs she would need for the herbal tea she needed to make. Then she led the two girls into a work room.

"You mentioned being interested in herbs." she began as she set a pan of water on the work room stove.

"I am making an herbal remedy using catnip. It is also called catmint, and it can be used as either a tea, or a salve to treat a variety of conditions such as dandruff, hemorrhoids, fever, headaches, diarrhea, insect bites, and anxiety. It can also be used as a cold and flu remedy. Catnip has a sedative influence on the nerves that adds to its soothing quality. It combines well with the mint and sage to make a pleasant tasting herbal remedy for fevers. That is what I am making now."

Seira watched intently as she put some dried herbs into a mug. Given what Chiara had just said, Seira guessed that the herbs were a mixture of mint, sage, and catnip.

"Isn't catnip a plant that cats like to eat?" Seri asked curiously.

Chiara grinned at the girls and nodded.

"Not exactly. Cats love to roll in catnip leaves. The scent of it often makes cats act as though they are drunk...much to the amusement of their owners."

"We should see if we can get some to give to Ryu." Seri told her sister.

"Maybe some trial." Seira said after a few trills.

It would be an interesting sight to see from the sounds of it. But Seira wasn't sure if drugging her cat was a good thing to do. Then again, if a healer was the one who was mentioning the influence that catnip had on cats, then surely it wouldn't harm them.

They waited for the water to come to a boil before Chiara poured it into the mug.

"It's going to take a while for the herbs to steep, and I won't be able to supervise you once it's ready. But if you want to come back another trial, we will always be happy for the help."

"Actually..."

Seira hesitated for a few trills before continuing.

"Would it be possible for us to read a book about herbs for a while before we go? Seriel and I would love to learn about a few more herbs while we're here."

Chiara considered the question for a while before nodding.

"I think that would be okay. Here, let me get a few books that might interest you while this is steeping. I'll get some paper you can use for taking notes if you'd like as well."

"Thank you." Seira said sincerely.

Chiara left to get the books she had promised. When she returned, she brought the girls to a different work room that wasn't being used.

"You shouldn't be disturbed here. Just leave the books on the table when you're done with them, okay?"

Seira promised that they would. Chiara wished them luck in their studies, and went back to work.



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Pegasus Pug!!!
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Re: Tentative Steps

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Your Review
Seira

Overview

The way that you write your PC is very clear and her hunger to learn is really obvious! I got a little confused, especially in the first post, with who was talking - which of the twins - but I recognise that's a tricky thing to overcome with a lot of dialogue. I enjoyed the "togetherness" of the twins, and they obviously come across as very tightly bonded. I hope you enjoy your rewards! Some of your knowledges are very long - especially the Animal Husbandry one. Cat owners finding it amusing is not relevant to the knowledge. Please be wary of too-long knowledges as they make things tricky for peer reviewers when checking. But, that said, all knowledges awarded!

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XP: 10
Renown: 5

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Knowledge


Animal Husbandry; felines: Catnip, or catmint is particularly appealing to cats, who love to roll in its leaves. Under the influence of catnip, cats will often act as though they are drunk, something that many cat owners find amusing to watch.
Medicine; Herbal Remedy: an herbal tea or tisane is a beverage that is made from plants, seeds, flowers, roots or fruits of all plants except for actual tea leaves; the herbs used in the herbal teas that are used as medicine have medicinal value to those who drink them
Medicine; Herbal Remedy: how to make herbal teas
Medicine; Herbal Remedy: herbal infusions are similar to herbal teas in the way they are consumed, but they are stronger than normal teas because they use more herbs, and are steeped for longer amounts of time
Medicine; Herbal Remedy: how to make herbal infusions
Medicine; Herb: uses of catnip/catmint


If you have any questions or concerns regarding this review - drop me a PM.
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