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    Checking in on the kids

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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 21/12/12, 05:48 pm

    "Saiya seems to be really sweet on you. I've barely ever heard her say more than three words to anyone else. She seems to connect with you. I think it's because you understand what she's going through with her leg."

    Kallista shrugged.

    "Just be sure that whatever you do you still come by and see the others afterwards. And bring the ones you adopt with you. These kids have lost enough already, without losing more of their friends."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 21/12/12, 06:07 pm

    "Oh, definitely," Aleyn agreed. "Going from this place to a regular family home would be a huge adjustment anyway, no need to make it harder on them than it has to be - and I wouldn't be able to stay away, I'm sure. I guess the first step would be to ... get that regular family home. I could hardly have kids in my apartment, it's barely big enough for me on my own. Vedran doesn't even like to stay over there, it's too cramped for him," he added with a smile.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 21/12/12, 06:18 pm

    As they walked up the concrete steps to the orphanage's front door, Kallista chuckled.

    "Wow, he's that big, huh?" She said with a wry grin. Before Aleyn could respond she reached out and knocked sharply on the door, putting on her most innocent smile.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 21/12/12, 09:25 pm

    Aleyn was struck by a sudden coughing fit, but managed to get himself under control before the door opened and they were greeted by Halma, one of the matrons. "Is this a good time to have a visit?" he asked her, not wanting to disrupt the kids' routine.

    She nodded. "As long as it's not too long - they're just having some time to play before dinner."

    The sounds of children's laughter and shouts echoed off the walls as they walked inside, making it clear that playtime was in full swing.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 21/12/12, 10:47 pm

    "Hey guys!" Kallista exclaimed as she walked into the main room of the orphanage. Immediately a half a dozen young kids stopped whatever games they were playing and swarmed towards her to give her hugs.

    "Karrista!" one of the younger ones said, latching on to her leg.

    She smiled as she noticed Saiya slowly making her way towards Aleyn instead.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 21/12/12, 11:01 pm

    Aleyn crouched down to be closer to the little girl's height. "Hi there, Saiya," he said, smiling at her. She was dragging a blanket in one hand and had a very tattered rag doll clutched in the other. She smiled back at him, not shy at all, and held out her arms to let him pick her up.

    "Hi!" she said, clinging onto him tightly. "Story?"

    "Sure, we can read a book," he told her, amused at her impatience. He carried her in the direction of the shelf so she could pick one out. Soon they were settled down to read, with the child cuddled in the crook of Aleyn's arm, and her doll nestled snugly on her lap.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

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

    Kallista watched Aleyn settle down with Saiya in his lap and smiled. She sat herself down among the other children that crowded around her.

    "Pway ogres wif us!" a small boy of about three said to her, tugging on her sleeve. He shoved a well-used doll into her hands with a giggle and Kallista made it move around and growl and the other children giggled and made their own dolls run away. It was a simple game, but one that seemed to endlessly amuse the younger children.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 22/12/12, 01:59 pm

    Aleyn finished Saiya's story fairly quickly (since she insisted on skipping ahead pages whenever she felt things were getting too boring) and then they played with her doll together, wrapping it safely in the blanket so it could go to sleep. "Hey," Aleyn asked her casually, "do you have a friend here, someone you really like to play with?"

    Saiya nodded and pointed over to a little drow boy, a bit older than her, who was playing quietly by himself, stacking towers of blocks until he got frustrated and knocked them down to build again. Aleyn noticed he wore an eyepatch over his right eye, and had some scars on that cheek as well. "Mhireen!" she said, and ran over to get him, taking him by the hand to drag him back over and play with Aleyn. He came reluctantly away from his blocks - "I was playing, Saiya!" - but he let her lead him anyway.

    "We can all play with the blocks if you want," Aleyn offered, and soon they were engaged in a large-scale construction project, somewhat impeded by Saiya's inability to be patient, but they were having fun nevertheless.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 22/12/12, 02:29 pm

    The two adventurers spent the next half hour engaged in various games with the children, but soon enough it was mealtime and Halma came back in, wiping her hands on an apron.

    "Alright, children, dinner time," she said in her no-nonsense voice. There was a chorus of groans from the assembled children, but most of them obediently got up to head to the kitchen after giving the adventurers hugs.

    Saiya stayed behind a little longer than the rest to give Aleyn an extra hug before reluctantly leaving to join the rest.

    Halma smiled and patted her on the head as she went through the doorway into the adjoining dining room.

    "It eans a lot to them when you come by," she said with a smile once the children had left.

    "It means a lot to us, too," Kallista said, standing up and picking up some of the stray dolls, "I wish there was more we could do."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 22/12/12, 04:53 pm

    Aleyn, also helping put away some of the usual playroom debris, gave Kallista a sidelong look. "I wanted to ask if there was anything particular you needed," he said to the matron. "Or would money just be more helpful, so you can get things as the need arises?"

    Halma considered for a moment. "We're relatively comfortable for money right now, thanks to the funds Roscoe left for us, but more donations are always helpful." She looked saddened at the mention of the deceased warforged, but also grateful for his generosity. "If you wanted to do something special for the children, though, we would like to take them out on a special outing one of these days, but it's so difficult to manage all of them when we go places. If you were able to come and help supervise them, that would be a great help!"

    "Provided we're in town, I'd be glad to help with something like that," Aleyn said with a smile.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 22/12/12, 05:12 pm

    "Definitely," Kallista said with a nod, "We'd love to help with something like that. I'm sure we could probably recruit Del and Vedran for it also. We could take them for a day trip to the zoo or maybe down to the airdocks to see the ships."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 23/12/12, 09:09 pm

    "Those both sound like fun trips," Aleyn agreed. "And I'm sure you're right, we could get some of the others to help out too. So just let us know when you plan to take then, and we'll coordinate our schedules to be there."

    Halma nodded, smiling as they walked to the door. "Very well. Thank you again for all your help."

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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 23/12/12, 09:24 pm

    "Thank you," Kallista said genuinely, "Without you and the other matrons. This place wouldn't exist without you. If you or the children ever need anything, please let us know. We'll do everything we can."

    Halma smiled and nodded.

    "We will. And I'll let the others know you stopped by. It means a lot to us that you take an active interest in the children."

    With a parting wave, the two adventurers stepped down onto the walkway and left.

    "Well..." Kallista said, with a slight bounce in her step, "The evening is still young. What should we do now?"
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 23/12/12, 09:30 pm

    Aleyn shrugged. "I don't have any plans until later," he said. "I guess we had talked about checking in on those tiefling kids, see how they're doing. Do you feel up to that?"
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 23/12/12, 09:39 pm

    Kallista nodded.

    "Yeah, that sounds like a good idea. Last time I saw them they seemed to still be in shock from the transition. I can't imagine what they must all be going through."

    She paused for a second, looking pensive.

    "Aleyn... do you think I did the right thing arguing to bring them back?"
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 23/12/12, 09:49 pm

    Aleyn considered for a moment. "I think they deserve the chance to change their paths. I like to think that anyone can change, but practically, it's more likely that they might than that a lot of the other cultists we've dealt with would - they're still young, and probably still forming their ideas about what's right and wrong and how the world works. And if they get the chance to see other examples of how people live, to understand that what they were raised with isn't the only choice, then maybe they can turn things around. And I don't think you did wrong by wanting to give them that chance."

    He paused before continuing. "But... you have to know that it might not work. And if it doesn't, it doesn't mean you made the wrong choice - it doesn't reflect badly on you. It means you're a good, kind person and you have hope even when things seem hopeless, and those are all good things. I just don't want you to get hurt if it doesn't turn out the way you hope."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 23/12/12, 10:00 pm

    Kallista too the human's arm and squeezed it.

    "I know. I know it's probably too much to hope for, I just... I want them to have more of a chance than I had. What they do with it no one can decide but them."

    She looked up at her friend and smiled.

    "But if anyone can give them the discipline and purpose they need to make it, it's Master Halatir. I've only met him twice, but he definitely makes an impression. I can see where Del gets her focus from."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 23/12/12, 10:01 pm

    "I've never actually met him," Aleyn said. "What's he like? Other than disciplined and focused," he added with a hint of a smile. "He basically raised Del, didn't he?"
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 04/01/13, 05:25 pm

    "I don't really know him that well. He seems like a nice enough guy. A little odd, maybe, but who isn't? Del really loves him. He was basically her father, yeah."

    She shrugged.

    "But he expects a lot from his students, and he doesn't put up with nonsense. Plus, it's a good way for them to get introduced to society slowly. without being thrown off the deep end."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 04/01/13, 05:39 pm

    "Well, that sounds like an ideal situation for them, then. I hope that it's all working out well. Or at least, as well as can be expected. I mean, they are still teenagers, whatever else might be going on in their lives," he added with a smile, then glanced up at the sky, which was darkening with clouds. "It looks like it might rain," he said. "Hopefully we don't get soaked on the way there."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 04/01/13, 07:24 pm

    Kallista looked up at the gathering clouds.

    "Ah, I don't mind getting a little wet."

    She grinned slightly.

    "Speaking of which, how are things going with Vedran, lately?"
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 04/01/13, 07:46 pm

    Aleyn gave Kallista a smirk, but otherwise ignored the implications of her choice of segue. "Things are going really well," he told her. "In Ahkas, he seemed a lot more relaxed, and I think that helped us both, having the chance to talk more and spend more time with each other. I hope that even though we're back here now, it'll keep on getting better. I mean, we're still working through some stuff, but he's really understanding of the things that are important to me, or that aren't easy for me, and I try to do the same for him..." He shrugged, knowing he probably wasn't making much sense to Kallista without specific details, but hoping she'd get the idea anyway.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 04/01/13, 07:52 pm

    "Well, I'm glad things are getting better. You both deserve it."

    She paused for a moment and watched the clouds roll in as they walked.

    "So... are you guys fucking yet?" she asked conversationally.
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by Curtana on 04/01/13, 08:12 pm

    Aleyn gave a little laugh, but couldn't help blushing a bit too. "Um... by certain definitions, yes. Like I said, there are some things he's still not comfortable with, but we're working on it. And he's usually happy to do stuff for me, if I suggest it, or sometimes just because he wants to," he added with a smile. "It's getting better - not necessarily fast, but I can be patient for him."
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    Re: Checking in on the kids

    Post by tuck on 04/01/13, 08:47 pm

    Kallista nodded. She knew that Vedran had issues with sex, and that it might be a while before he worked through them.

    "Yeah. Being patient is probably all you can do."

    She pondered letting it go at that and changing the topic, but her innate curiosity got the better of her.

    "How was the 'Stuff' he's done for you so far? Pretty fun?"

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