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    On the Road Again

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    On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 19/12/11, 09:09 pm

    The preceding weeks had been difficult on Kallista, but being out in the open country again, with a mission and a purpose, had cured much of the darkness that had been eating away at her ever since the attack on Highmark. Helping to bring some wanted vampire criminals to justice was just what she had needed.

    Once again she found herself on the bridge of the skyship that was becoming almost a second home to her. There was a slight spring to her step and she swung her arms lightly to keep herself warm in the brisk winter air. Even at close to high noon the temperature was below freezing at this altitude.

    She wandered over to the captains quarters and knocked sharply on the ornate wooden door, a slight grin on her face.
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 19/12/11, 09:27 pm

    Brenn attention faltered as he spotted Kallista strolling across the deck. His eyes followed her path, realized she was headed towards his quarters. A snap of Yarr's fingers brought him back to the task at hand.

    "Brenn! Any thoughts?" Her expression clearly indicated she assumed he hadn't heard anything she'd said.

    "What? Ah, right," he stumbled, clearing his throat loudly.

    "Talk to Saevarn instead of Gurakka about the shipment, she'll give a better price. We'll put in at Farthal on the way to pick up ingredients wholesale. Remind me to talk to Thruik when we get back. He's got some thoughts about ironroot that could cut our costs. If there's nothing else, I've got other business to attend to."

    Without waiting for a response, the half-elf spun on his heel and deftly began his way across the deck. The cutting breeze masked the sound of Brenn's footsteps as he surreptitiously approached the tiefling. Grinning at possibly getting the drop on the professional rogue, he leaned in to be heard over the wind.

    "Well, well, my favorite hellion. Looking for someone?"
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 19/12/11, 10:03 pm

    Kallista's heart jumped into her throat as she spun around to face the captain. She gave a rather undignified "Eep" as her hand instinctively leapt to her the hilt of her sword, which was, thankfully, still in her cabin.

    "Ooooh", she said a moment later when her pulse had slowed a bit, "I should punch you. Except you'd probably enjoy it."

    She grinned and leaned back against the door.

    "As a matter of fact, I was looking for you. I thought maybe we could... talk."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 19/12/11, 10:11 pm

    Brenn recoiled, raising his hands in a placating gesture but laughing a little all the same. His smirking grin turned concerned and quizzical as Kallista spoke.

    "Always. What's on your mind?" He leaned past her to open the door to his cabin, ushering her inside.
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 19/12/11, 10:47 pm

    Kallista laughed at Brenn's concerned look. She followed after him as he headed into his chambers.

    "Oh, nothing bad. I just realized that we hadn't actually talked since... well actually, we didn't do a whole lot of talking then either."

    She paused for a second.

    "Ummm... that came out wrong. I just meant... Maybe it would be nice to have get to know each other in a more... vertical... fashion."

    She sighed.

    "Ok, that wasn't any better, was it?"
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 19/12/11, 11:11 pm

    Brenn laughed, gesturing towards the table and chairs.

    "It was fine; I completely understand." He turned towards his cabinet, stalling for a little time. "Should we avoid liquor this time? I've got some Yondon ale that shouldn't be more than we can handle. Would you like something to eat?"
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 19/12/11, 11:43 pm

    Kallista grinned and walked over to one of the ornate, cushy chairs, pulling it up to the dark, wooden table..

    "That sounds good. What's on the menu?"
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 20/12/11, 04:51 am

    Smiling, Brenn sidestepped to a small panel in his cabin wall, which he depressed and slid to the side to reveal dumbwaiter with a chalkboard back.

    "Anything you want, Ms. Sinsinger. Farro keeps the galley well-stocked, and I think precedent shows I'm not one to deny a guest."

    Brenn bent to jot down a request, sliding the panel closed for the moment. He turned to regard Kallista again.

    "While we wait, I suppose I should address your previous point." He strolled back to cabinet and drew two dark brown bottles. He removed the lids with a ring as he continued. "To be honest, I wasn't sure how to handle our first...encounter."

    He smiled shamelessly, offering Kallista one of the bottles before taking a seat himself.

    "We're both people who've chosen lives which rarely afford them the luxury of a predictable schedule. You yourself confessed to lacking anywhere to call home at present. There was every chance that that night was merely a pleasant diversion, a victory celebration of sorts."

    Brenn took a long drink, his gaze distant for a moment.

    "Being honest, however, I think it'd be a true tragedy if that were the case."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 20/12/11, 12:05 pm

    Kallista accepted the bottle with a grin and sat back in her chair.

    "Yeah..." she said, wincing slightly, "I... it's since come to my attention that I should apologize for that. Where I come from... things work differently. It's all very... casual, I guess."

    She shifted slightly in her chair.

    "I didn't realize it doesn't work that way here.I hope you don't think... less of me because of it."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 20/12/11, 07:10 pm

    Brenn frowned at Kallista's response.

    "Not at all. I wasn't meaning it as a reproach, Kallista. Even if it was just a one-time thing, it was certainly a worthwhile experience." He favored her with a wink.

    "When I implied I would regret it as a singular event, I meant I would be disappointed not to have the chance to, as you said, get to know you better. Despite rather vastly different circumstances, I think we've a lot in common. I'd relish the opportunity to, ahem, explore what we have to offer each other."

    Brenn leaned forward, cradling his drink. He broke eye contact with Kallista as he finished, for once displaying something resembling diffidence.
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 20/12/11, 08:21 pm

    Kallista was quiet, but her smile remained. She leaned forward as well, putting one hand on his cheek and turning him to face her again.

    "I think... I'd like that too." she said, and pressed her lips to his. For a long moment she held him in the kiss before finally letting go.

    "I'm not always the quickest on the uptake, and I'm still new to this world. The last few months I've learned an awful lot... Enough to know that I'm not sure I know what I'm doing. But I'd be honored if you'd help me figure it out."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 20/12/11, 10:58 pm

    Brenn leaned into the kiss, sorry to have it end. He remained leaning forward for a moment before settling back down in his chair.

    "I'd be equally honored to do so, though I'm still in the same process myself. Recent events have...shifted my priorities somewhat."

    His gaze grew distant again for a moment before he continued.

    "Speaking of the last few months, however, how have you been? Cael and Vedran keep me reasonably apprised of things, but I know everyone at the Union has been run ragged. I've been somewhat in that boat myself."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 20/12/11, 11:30 pm

    Kallista sighed and leaned back in her chair again.

    "It's been... Tough. Everyone's been trying, but there's just so much to do. To be honest I feel bad just being here. There's still so many people that need help."

    She shrugged.

    "But I guess at some point we had to get out of Highmark for a while, if only for our own sanities."


    Last edited by tuck on 21/12/11, 01:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 21/12/11, 12:08 am

    "I know how you feel. I still feel guilty that we weren't in Highmark when...when it happened. Like I abandoned a friend when they needed me."

    Brenn sighed and took another swig of his drink.

    "What sort of work have you been doing? I'd heard they managed to clear out the elementals in a week or two."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 21/12/11, 09:30 am

    "A bit of everything." Kallista said with a sigh, "Mostly working with children. My friends and I started a small orphanage for the kids that were displaced, but we've also been doing rubble clearing, nursing, search and rescue... you name it. They got most of the elementals pretty quick, but they seem to manage to pop up in the weirdest places. They found a small one living in the local blacksmith's forge just a few days ago. The damned things are persistent."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 21/12/11, 11:32 am

    "Well, aren't we all," Brenn offered, nodding. "This orphanage business sounds fantastic. I knew adventuring was lucrative, but at third level... You must be doing very well for yourselves."

    His grin faltered a bit as he continued.

    "How bad is it in Undertow? I was down there a few weeks after the disaster, delivering medical supplies and checking in on people. It was still rough then, and I hear it hasn't gotten the aid it needs. Avandra knows some of us are trying, but everyone official seems more concerned with where the disaster came from than what it did."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 21/12/11, 11:42 am

    "It's bad", Kallista said sadly, "They still don't have a death estimate. Hundreds. Maybe thousands. They've gotten some aid, much of it thanks to Vedran and his family, but there's nowhere near enough to go around and overall there hasn't been much action at all from the government."

    It was still hard to think about the disaster. Kallista's eyes were beginning to water just talking about it. She decided she had better change the subject before she made a fool of herself in front of Brenn. She took another swig of her ale and forced a smile, blinking back the tears.

    "This is good. Really good. If there's one thing I appreciate about the outside world it's the booze."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 21/12/11, 11:50 pm

    Brenn eyed Kallista with concern, his first instinct to reach out to comfort her. At her last comment, however, Brenn considered it best to follow her change of subject.

    "Oh absolutely. I've got spirits from everywhere I've been, and adding more every trip. An alcoholic tour of Nerath. Someday we'll have to see what Ahkas or Morro has to offer."

    Brenn smiled broadly as he leaned back to take a long drink of the Yondonian ale, sighing contentedly.

    "On the subject of travel, you once told me you'd traveled a bit before you joined the Explorer's Union. So, you know some of my exploits. What sorts of interesting things have you gotten up to if far-flung locales?"
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 22/12/11, 12:36 am

    Mallorca laughed and took another swig of ale.

    "Oh, gods" she chuckled, "Most of my adventures before the guild involved me misunderstanding my way into trouble and having to talk or run my way out of it."

    She sat back and bit her lip in thought for a moment.

    "Like one time when I was in a small village to the south of here. Eagle's Roost, I think it was called. First town I'd seen since leaving Bael Hexott. I had only been away from 'Home' for a few weeks by then and I didn't know my tail from a tent pole. I was so used to everything being communal property, especially sleeping quarters. First night in town I wandered into some farmer's barn, made a bed on their hay, took off all my clothes and fell asleep."

    She sighed and shook her head.

    "They were not happy when their thirteen year old son came out to feed the animals at dawn."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 22/12/11, 09:53 am

    Brenn grinned broadly, his eyebrows waggling.

    "I'd be willing to bet the son was, though."

    At the sound of a bell, he stood and walked back over to the dumbwaiter.

    "So, what brought you to Highmark? Did you set out looking to join one of the guilds?" he called over his shoulder.
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 22/12/11, 10:03 am

    "Not exactly." Kallista said, leaning her chin on her hand and watching Brenn head for the dumbwaiter, her yellow eyes following his backside shamelessly, "I had heard in my travels that it was the best place for someone like me. Big, diverse, and fairly liberal. I was in the city for about a day before I ended up in a bar fight in the Jumping Mare, a seedy little pub on the west side of Undertow. Raddok happened to be there with some of his buddies and he was impressed with how I handled myself. After the fight they bought me a drink and asked if I'd ever considered adventuring."

    She shrugged.

    "I honestly hadn't. But I hadn't had much success doing anything else either, so I figured it would be a good way to earn my keep."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 22/12/11, 11:18 am

    Brenn listened as he opened the panel, removing a plate piled with food. He snagged a small soft pretzel from the plate and took a small bite before heading back to the table.

    "Mmm, I'm glad we've been making runs up to Grimfar. Farro's learned a lot of these little dwarven treats."

    Smiling, Brenn placed the food on the table and took his seat, gesturing for Kallista to partake.

    "So, what's your preference, vagabond or adventurer? I imagine your wanderings have gotten more...interesting, of late."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 22/12/11, 11:39 am

    Kallista eyed the plate and picked up what looked like a small sausage link wrapped in pastry. She popped it in her mouth and chewed appreciatively.

    "Wow, that's really good." she said, taking another sip of ale, "Adventuring is much more my style. I get to travel the world, protect people, meet interesting new friends...."

    She grinned at Brenn and winked.

    "But at the end of the day I still have a home to go back to. A family of sorts. What about you? Where do you call home?"
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by Josh on 22/12/11, 12:21 pm

    For once, Brenn looked apprehensive, unsure. He leaned back in his chair, stretching.

    "Here, mostly. I don't think I've been off the ship more than a few days since that first voyage to Thantopolis."

    He sighed heavily.

    "Truth be told, I greatly prefer this life to the alternative. I'll leave the politicking to those with the stomach for it."
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    Re: On the Road Again

    Post by tuck on 22/12/11, 12:28 pm

    Kallista saw the unease in Brenn's face and gave a half smile, trying to allay his worries.

    "Family can be a bitch." she said simply.

    She reached out and gently put her hand on his.

    "I know how you feel."

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