Not As It Seems

-Ragodast, The Wastrel's Haunt, Late Evening, 3 DSTR-

She smirked at how well he'd already mapped out the building. He needed to reach the capital and she needed to get out more. Way more.

"The capital," she thought for a moment, "now that's somewhere I haven't been in a while. Unsavory business finds us all here Dalen, it seems, so I can't say I'm surprised." Asealya looked to him with bright eyes. "I can direct you but I'm afraid I'll have to tag along. And it may cost a couple of coin seeing as I'd like to avoid this destination. A good ten silver, enough to help out my housing payment," she chuckled. "But I guess it depends on how much you're carrying."

Thierri nodded slowly. His expression read he truly enjoyed the ale which gave her more confidence on her brewing skill. Sure, it was good to her and most patrons but someone who hadn't been in Ragodast or the tavern would be nearly foreign to it, the kick. Surely everyone could use a pint here and there because things never failed to become strenuous in this town. Luckily she hadn't been the center of too much stress and the woman planned to keep it that way as long as possible. It was peaceful for a time but the wolves would catch up and the bodies would multiply, and many of them. The hardest part? Understanding who were the wolves and who were the corpses. Anyone could be anything here.

Hunting. The lycan's mouth watered at the thought of sinking her teeth into a boar or a deer, the warm blood on her tongue that she had craved. From his appearance and the eagerness in his tone it was safe to say he'd been experienced in the ways of the wilds. Usually Mohrjak or one of her few friends were her hunting buddies. One time wouldn't hurt.
"Name a time and a place. But I'll see to another round while you do," with that she hastily rose from her seat, nabbing both of their tankards to refill with the frothy liquid. "And don't worry, I'll go easy on you."
When she shifted on hunts things got ugly but she felt he was a close competitor. And it was Dalen so he couldn't be too surprised seeing a lycan. He wasn't entirely human she could sense it so maybe he had something to let loose as well. Only time would tell. And she wanted time to spill the beans.

- Hartford, Verden, Evening, 8 DSTR -

Kadri'Saar stood at her desk behind a closed door sweeping the wooden floorboards as she gazed out into the sky. It was getting late and a few stars crept through the clouds like they were playing a game of hide and seek. She'd never had the luxury to seek, it was always hiding for folks like her in the kingdom. But she always seeked when she would play the game with the little ones in Hartford, they loved her and she read stories to them every week. And she had plenty whether she bought them or wrote them herself. Instilling wonder and curiosity into those children wasn't the smartest idea but it was only with good intentions. Not everyone was full of chaos and wickedness.
For instance Kadri enchanted some of the common herbs she gathered and distributes from the apothecary shop just to make sure citizens are healed properly. They never questioned it either, once in a while they'd ask "How?" in which she either explained some made up science or claimed they were a blessed substance, both of which were incorrect. For someone who was so keen on being kind she could sure whip up a strong lie once in a while about as easily as she did tonics. And that was very easy. But she usually left it to nature to supply the world with lush and potent healing properties in the leaves of a plant or the juice of a berry. Still, she knew lying was incorrect even if it helped people... or was it right?

As the night grew darker her nervousness intensified. A pull was heavy in her chest one she could understand. But she did understand the bit that wanted to leave. Leave Hartford, Verden, all of it. Find Dalen. Find answers.

Find us, she swore she heard a whisper as she set the broom aside. Maybe she just needed some air and a nightly stroll to clear her mind, poor girl hadn't been outside all day. Reading in the moonlight in a field away from home was a good remedy for the blues. She knelt down and moved a floorboard back to reveal a thick book covered in tattered leather, a smaller journal, and three long pieces of what resembled a burnt stick. She shoved all of the contents into her bag without a second glance, placing the board back neatly, and exiting her room.

She dressed herself in a swampy green blouse with a few missing buttons and high waisted riding trousers. Her boots she wore out were scuffed and muddied but she didn't mind for a second. The girl wasted no time on little details when in a hurry. Peaking down the hallway straight into the dining room the candles had been blown out and all except for her room were cloaked in total darkness. She grinned whether it was nervous or mischievous she didn't know. Feet creaking over the floorboards felt like stepping on eggshells over and over. Just a stroll... but in case she got hungry the girl plucked three apples from the basket on the table.

Papa won't like this... running off in the night and stealing food all without his knowledge.

But mother would.
And Zaonna.
And Asealya.
The ones she was even leaving for in the first place.

"Alright maybe we can do some riding," Kadri whispered and hung the satchel around her neck. Some of the coin she stored jingled as she did so. Who knows what kind of markets were in the neighboring kingdom. Opening the door she got an immediate chill that was icy enough for her to throw her cape around her shoulders before stepping out.

Upon entering the housing unit for their horses only one remained. Bardolphus got rid of the horses when they wouldn't obey his command or even come near him. Luckily her favorite mount had some tolerance for her father. The storm-grey donkey looked up to his rider with a shimmering gaze as if in welcome.
She climbed onto the black spotted Diamur after setting up his bridle similar to how she did her old horses. Kadri was good with managing them but not donkeys; Diamur was a kind soul, however, and was simple to manage.

"We're going to go on a little trip. Now I know it's not saying much and you don't like surprises--" The creature gave a flick of his tail grazing the rider's cheek before she could continue. In return she gave him a stroke on the neck, "Yeah, you're right." For a moment she found the texture of his fur soothing, enchanting almost. "One of these days the world will meet you again. And they'll love you," she whispered. "You'll be safe."
Diamur wasn't a donkey and as soon as she made it across the border all could be revealed. But before they reached the border she needed to go northwest, according to the journal her mother penned. Some estimated navigating and then it was easy from there. It had to be.
Kadri took control of the reins with confidence.

No more secrets.

"Skeldergate it is."

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