« on: December 23, 2011, 09:21:29 AM »
It was just another November morning at the Inn.
The Gypsy was sitting inside at a table, cup of coffee at her side, though the rest of the place was....
But it wasn't technically deserted, he was there sprawled belly bottom atop a rafter with an arm dangling over. He was somewhat sleeping but an ear kept notice of occurrences when need be.
Tilting her head she delicately licked the tip of one finger to better grasp an old and brittle page. Carefully turning it she shifted in her seat, the tick-tock-tick of the clock filling in the silence. She had a lot to learn, Vera mused to herself, one hand reaching blindly for the porcelain mug of cream laced coffee.
Funny, the Gypsy had been here for a while now but she hadn't picked up on anyone else within the Inn. Then again she had all her mental blocks on full, so, there ya go.
"Needs more sugar ...." Mutterings towards her mug, amber eyes narrowed down to cat like slits in contemplation. "Bother."
He let out a groan, easily rotating without falling thanks to his ever cradling abyss. He let out a puffed sigh, golden hues glancing up at the ceiling before they angled down at the woman. He stared for a moment, tousling his onyx locks before rotating without assistance and making a soundless landing upon the floor. He remained close to the hearth, taking a lean against a worn couch while he stood dangerously close to the fire.
Caught up in the old, ancient text on Greek myth and lore Vera slowly stood up, almost without looking from her page. The Gypsy was in utter bookworm mode; her movements slow as her thought process ran rampant. So much so that when she finally turned on her heel with the intentions of doctoring up her coffee she nearly let out an impressive Valkyrie screech.
"Sweet mother of God! Where did you come from!?"
He didn't flinch at her screech; rather he cringed at it almost giving her an unwelcoming snarl before he shook his head. He pointed up towards the rafters, his gaze settling on her.
Deep voice sounded so rich without rasp for being asleep more than a day. A tilt of his head and he examined the woman, head to toe, taking in all of her features before he moved his gaze back toward the fire.
"Didn't mean to frighten you. My apologies."
The Gypsy wasn't looking like much a real gypsy these days. She was dressed rather simply in jeans and a black sweater that fell nearly to her knees. Tawny hair was left like wild ivy vines to trail down her shoulders and back, a bit darker with the coming cold season. Blinking, amber eyes briefly met the more gold hue of his, still wide and startled.
"Oh ..." she breathed a bit lamely around a laugh, a hand moving to press against the center of her chest. She felt foolish, letting her guard down so easily. "It?s fine! Your fine, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to scream your head off ..."
Looking up she blinked for a time. "I forgot about those ..."
Yes, a bit dumbly now.
A blur of black and he was within inches from her left side, golden hues staring intently from their peripherals. He kind of coiled about her, making a full circle before he stopped to face her. He wasn't much for manners, nor did he respect personal space.
Probably because he had no idea what either of the two meant on his bad days.
A shaded tendril withered beneath him, surfacing from his natural shadow and angling itself beside his chin bouncing to and fro like a cobra ready to attack.
It was all he said before he brushed past her, taking in a good whiff of her scent before heading toward the bar in need of something to burn that wicked throat of his.
Swallowing the gasps that threatened to burst from her lips she took a few small steps back, not that it did much, only have to step forward again, back once more with him right in front of her again! Talk about some complicated dance maneuvers. Tilting her head she in turn gave him the same examination, though more politely from beneath the veil of her lashes.
"Thank you ...."
She cleared her throat to hide more of her surprise, feeling a touch out of her depth. "I'm Vera." She didn't ask for his name yet, hoping he would get the hint. Curiosity, her biggest fault to date, had her trail behind him a few steps.
Careful, cautious it was the name of her game. If you wanted to be fastidious.
It was much too hard to swallow the grin that threatened to taint such innocent features, but he managed only allowing one corner to creep its way causing a smug smirk to form. He had poured himself a glass of whiskey, but who could tell with all of the blur and faded grays moving about behind the bar. One could describe movement, but that was it. Everything became much more solid as he moved in front of her again, extending a sweeter coffee her way and taking a swig from his whiskey.-
"You may call me Elis."
He gave a warm smile, too fake for the mood he was in. But he restrained himself from scaring the woman, because have it his way and there would be no talking involved.-
"Lovely to meet you, Elis."
She didn't have to work much on saying names, though her accent still filtered out, drawling more than maybe it should. Vera didn't hesitate on taking the coffee but she didn't exactly start drinking from it either. She wasn't born yesterday though she didn't sense anything ... exactly malicious from him.
Menace yes, he exuded power and danger, no doubt.
Firmly she kept her blocks up, the tip of her tongue peaking to swipe across her bottom lip, eyes darting briefly away while she gathered up her thoughts more.
"It?s been quiet here, huh? I've been stopping in every few days and I haven't seen any of the old gathering ..."
Small talk, irritating for most but it had always proved to be informative for her.
Elis didn?t have small talk on his mind apparently. With that same blur of motion he had displayed earlier Vera found herself in his arms, lips crashing down to seize her mouth. He didn?t do more than that, just pressed himself close, testing the waters, tasting just a part of her.
What the hell?
The Gypsy would have to hand it to him; he had quickly acquired the knack for knocking her off balance and in just a few minutes of them meeting. This had to be a record -- or she was becoming soft. The only problem that soon enough ozone sprung up in her senses, her mental blocks crashing down to read for the first time signs of his aura. Gasping she wrenched her head to the side, the coffee mug he had given her crashing to the ground, spilling everywhere but somehow missing them.
She wanted to scream, she wanted to run far, far away and maybe never return.
What she did do was quickly step back, her hands up and pushing against his chest. "Now, that isn't polite ..." she sneered, amber eyes flashing before she banked the fire. "You usually take a girl out first, a dinner and a dance."
"People spend too much time on courting and not enough having fun."
It amused him that she didn't try to smack him or cause physical damage, it would've been pointless to do so. But he did love how she touched him, his chest rumbling due to the approaching growl that quickly faded when he took those hands and began giving them kisses to her palms.
"Did you not enjoy it?"
Golden hues as mischievous as ever, but still maintaining an innocent appeal. He only removed his gaze for a minute to look down at the coffee, giving a soft "tsk" before looking back to her.
"Would you like another?"
He didn't exactly elaborate on what kind of another he meant either.
It was all very once upon a time when Vera once would have acted on the kiss, when she would have demanded more in return. She had indeed spent far too much time having fun and forgoing all preliminaries. But life was short, mortal life especially. Shaking her head she tried to extract her hands from his but she knew enough to know, he wouldn't release her until he was damn, good, and ready to.
Swallowing she inhaled deeply, giving herself kudos for not trembling. "You are rather beautiful yourself, so, enjoy it? Of course, I am but a woman but alas, I fear I find that there is a certain elegance that can be found in courtship."
She quickly decided to not let on the certain knowledge she had retained from that kiss.
"Coffee?" She ignored his further innuendo, old hat at this.
"Please, it seems mine has spilled ..."
He did let go of her noting the breath she took to calm herself, well enough only to step back a few feet and perform a breath taking bow without flaw. His head lifted only as those golden hues rested on her once more, the devilish grin concaving into a gentlemen's after introduction.
"My apologies, m'love. I can very well court you, if that's what you fancy."
Still bowed before her, he extended the same hand that played with her locks in a gesture of invitation.
"Will you join me for another cup of coffee, without so much sugar?" Even though he was putting on the show of a gentleman, he still couldn't help his flirtatious joking.
Friend or foe, the Gypsy considered the offered hand before with just a hint of hesitation she slowly placed the long fingers of her own within its grip. The sensible part of her brain told her in no uncertain terms this was a bad bad idea. The other half reasoned it wouldn't help to make a new, powerful enemy.
Besides, he was only flirting, it wouldn't be so bad to flirt and smile in return.
Smiling and shoving away her misgivings she took a small step forward, "I prefer more cream than sugar but I enjoy the sweet more than the bitter."
The beating of wings disturbed the stillness of the day, trees bending and dust lifting. For a moment, the sun was blotted out, stealing the light from the yard of the Inn, but just for a moment. Looking the picture of elegance and innocence, the small drow made his way up the stairs and into the room, heading towards the bar and a drink.
"Ah...so we have a date!"
He said a bit excited, curling his slender fingers over her soft hand and leading her toward the bar. He gestured for her to take a seat while he let go of her, making way toward the bar break and rummaging up two cups of coffee the way she preferred it once more. So as not to make her feel uncomfortable again, he moved behind the bar to take lean in front of her. He set the coffee mug before her, adding a stick of cinnamon to his and stirring.
"So Vera, tell me about yourself? Children? Husband?"
Well, he was taking this a bit more serious, thought the Gypsy with much amusement. Picking up the coffee mug she blew softly across the surface, taking a cautious sip while she considered her own response. Foolish to hand out information so easily but doubly so to lie to someone like him.
"Never married despite a few offers, I have one child, meu fiica. Ah, a daughter," she clarified for him.
"Yourself?" Bracing her elbows on the counter she mirrored him, eyes darting to the .. Drow? My, my, what company she had this fine chilly day. Slowly she gave the Elf a nod before her attention went once more to Elis.
"You look young to have any children though ..." trailing off she smirked, "...looks are soooo deceiving."
He began to nibble on the cinnamon stick, a habit as a child which made him appear very boyish. He laughed at her comment of deceiving looks, nodding his head. He was well over a thousand years, but that he kept to himself.
"No children, nor wife. I have a bondmate, but that is all."
He said the word so casually, adding an equally mundane shrug to go with it. He took a sip from his coffee as well, headed nodding toward the drow before his attention drew back to Vera.
"A daughter, you say? She must have the looks of her mother, indeed. And I am quite...young, in certain
Feeling eyes on him, the Drow shivered slightly and turned, lips twisting into a smile. Brilliantly white teeth were seen, every other one filed to a razor edge. Standing, he dipped into a formal bow before taking his seat again, slender fingers wrapping around a bottle of wine.
Now this was information! Vera had a slight problem -- she was the proverbial Eve and everyday she did her best to eat from the Tree of Knowledge. Excitement flashed in her eyes, her lips finally curling into a true smile.
"I have heard of such things but never have I had the chance to speak to someone about that aspect of relationships. Where is your bond?" She didn't immediately call him out on his flirtatiousness, especially since she didn't yet know any details.
He blinked at her excitement, eyes widening at what seemed to be a mistake that he let those words out. A soft sigh as he continued to nibble on the cinnamon stick, occasionally dipping it for coffee flavoring.
"Ah...she is probably in the woods wandering, she can't be without guard at any time. But her breed can only mate with one and I was that one."
He shifted his weight, angling up and letting his hip lean into the bar as he took a sip of coffee.
"I bound myself to her for her protection, so in a sense it is a mutual relationship. But she knows of my "tendencies" and accepts them."
He figured he would explain the flirt without her asking, but summing his relationship into two sentences did no justice to their actual situation.
This brought a brief halt to her thought process, her head canting as she took in his explanation. Words like breed and protection were filed away for later. Drinking more of her coffee, she narrowed her eyes, already cataloging what books she would need to search through.
"Mmm, so, your together for both protection and procreation? But no children ...?"
She felt a bit cold suddenly and shivered, her mind flashing to Alyssa. Maybe she would need to talk to him more, careful to keep that track of thought from her face.
He shivered, shaking his head of the thought and setting down his mug. Lips thinned as those golden hues lost a bit of their chroma from that word, it wasn't one he was too fond of.
He had yet to digest the fact he would need to sire children eventually.
"I bonded to her, at first, for emotional reasons. It worked in our favor that we are of somewhat same race which needs to be carried on. She is also being hunted by a man that seeks her womb for procreation as well, so I bonded myself for her protection when she needs it. The man that seeks her does not have good intentions, so Arya will remain within my care until he is dead."
Stifling a large yawn, the Drow blew a long sigh, willing smoke to roll from his mouth. With a flip of his hand, the smoke formed into a glass and a small fruit, the glass poured full of wine and the fruit nibbled at. Closing his eyes, he leaned back against the bar and murmured to himself.
"L' ust d'lil vaen..."
"Oh, I am sorry to hear that for your bond ..." Strangely, it reminded her of a scary time in her past. Again she thought of Alyssa and cleared her throat, information filed away and stored in all the necessary places.
Pointing she asked, "Is that good with coffee?"
The Gypsy could be compassionate enough to change the subject. And did the Drow just say ... Lust? Blinking she peaked at him again, waiting for Elis to respond.
Words fell out of his mouth, heavily accented and sounding like rain drops in a pine forest, a haunting, threatening melody, "The first of the last is what I said." Again, he had felt the eyes on him.
"My native tongue. A thousand apologies."
He greatly appreciated the change of subject, the recent happenings all to fresh and hardly digested. He knew well what the Drow said, but did not know the exact purpose for saying it. So he continued the conversation casually, breaking the cinnamon stick and handing her a piece.
"Very well actually, almost like sugar but with a twist. And no apologies toward...my bond. I did what was necessary."
He looked toward the Drow, asking for more clarification.- "Would you mind explaining?"
Shrugging, the Drow said "Explanation. This is not a word that I fully grasp, and it would be pointless to try. Suffice to say that I spoke for another set of ears. There are ears that hear the whispers in the dark, more so when they are spoken by a rogue drow."
Dipping his head to the man, he lifted the glass and tasted his wine again.
"Oh no, its fine! I tend to do the same myself."
Small smile for the Drow, taking the cinnamon with a dubious air. Sniffing it, Vera stuck it gingerly into her coffee, swirling the darkly colored liquid, only lightened by the cream. Pulling it out and watching the drip drip drip of her coffee she took an experimental nibble, her tongue caressing before her teeth took a bigger bite.
"Mmm, very good!" Approved the Gypsy, once more repeating the whole affair. "He is right you know?" Vera had some past dealings with the Drow and sometimes, she could still understand a phrase or two. But considering it had been a Drow female ... well. It wasn't a pretty story.
"Yes, I know. My sister is half drow, she was kind enough to teach me the language."
He nodded agreeably with Vera, smiling at her approval of the cinnamon. He looked toward the door for a moment, looking beyond it into his void where he could clearly see the color changes of nights
"I should be leaving, Vera. I need to find Arya."
"Right. Also another word I do not fully understand." Another shrug, the bottle rising again, the Drow?s lips mimicking the smile. Another sigh, and another puff of smoke fell from his lips, a dainty finger drawing the picture of a small book. With a snap of said finger, the book became real and floated down, settling on the bar.
"I understand Elis." He wasn't a bad sort at all! Nothing like Andor, who was closer to him than she would ever let him know. Then again if he ever met Alyssa ... well. Delicately she stuck her hand out to him, meaning to shake his. "Pity are date has to be cut short." She joked with a brilliant smile.
"Such a pity, indeed. I'll be sure next time around to be more prepared for your questions, perhaps I shall bring Arya and you may witness our bond in person??
He guessed she would probably like this idea, remembering how excited she was to hear of it in the first place. He took her hand and gave her a tender kiss, finishing the goodbye with another wonderfully done bow. He gave another nod toward the drow, hopping over the bar and heading toward the door.
"Oh yes! I would love to hear more."
Much, much more for a variety of reasons.
Watching him leave for a time before turning the full force of her amber gaze on the Drow. The males were so much more tame then the females. Like a child she asked, "What are you reading ...?"
Rolling his shoulders back, he stood and paced towards her, dropping the book on the table. A single red hand was emblazoned on the front, the same as the one he wore on his chest.
"It is a list of guests. I own a shop and I was curious to see who had signed the register. And before you say much more, there are preconceived ideas about my race. I am only half a drow, and only a drow when I prefer to be. In honesty, I am a fully mature shadow dragon."
Stupidly she gaped up at him, wondering if he was a mind reader. No matter! If so, she tweaked her mental blocks a bit, wrinkling her nose with a teasing grin.
"Oh, I didn't mean anything ...rude."
Not completely anyway. Pulling the book towards her she looked through it with some interest,
"What sort of shop?" One day she herself wanted an Apothecary and was training for it in fact ... by herself.
"It is new and in the docks. It is my house and it is a..gathering place. Information is bought and sold and given. Along with odds and ends I have collected on my travels and items from my homeland."
Flashing another smile, he tipped his head and brushed his hair aside, removing a circlet with a large black gem set in the middle.
"I am in my war gear today and it gives me a rather unfair advantage. Again, a thousand apologies."
The gem that could catch thoughts was dropped into a pocket.
"Funny you would say that. My...mate runs an apothecary. Small world, is it not?"
Eying the circlet with an almost avarice gleam in her eyes she quickly hide in the veil of sooty lashes.
"Really? I should stop by and see what I may learn from an observational view point."
She was still in the minor leagues though when it came to such things, very good with herbs and strong wards, weak on everything else. Indeed, her own bangles and circlets had stones of topaz and amber, great for the protection and luck side of things. She didn't have anything to help her read anyone's' thoughts.
Plenty enough to deal with the buzz and current of life energy.
Lowering her blocks just a bit, she took in the taste of his, her eyes once more flashing to his face. "I'm always on the lookout for information, you can never have too much, eh?"
Shrugging, he said "One learns so much through magical means, but one also learns much from simply observing. In my line of work, observation is key. And this is where I stop confessing for fear of seeming...dangerous."
A thoughtful sigh escaped his lips as he ran a finger over his chin before he spoke, saying "Information is the difference between an animal and a civilized creature. But yes, do stop by. I have collected many things, strange things."
He was a Drow - alright, only half a Drow. Anyone would take one look and say, now that guy might be a bit dangerous.
Thankfully he couldn't catch this thought, her grin flashing, "Do you have a card or can you give me some directions? I work mainly in the Rhydin Library these days ..."
He smiled again, that sharks smile, full of razor teeth before he folded his arms over his chest, the armor sliding over itself, rustling slightly before he said, "I do not have a card and it is only found by chance. I can..guide you there. I can give you an....item of sorts that will lead you there if you ever wanted to go. It would not hurt." Here he chuckled, the sound of water bouncing off rocks.
"Depends on how much you trust a drow."
"Male Drow? Oh, about a thimble full."
She joked, her grin saying as much while she took a lean in her seat, eating the rest of her cinnamon stick, followed by a sip of her coffee. Ah, the vampires had it so wrong -- coffee was the Life, not blood.
Strong, dark, and caffeinated to the max.
"Female Drow? Not just no, but hell no! Eh, no offense to your mother or anything ..."
Quick to say, her brow wrinkling a bit.
Pale red eyes shifted, an almost angry flash settling into them. "I killed my mother. And my four sisters. I have no love for the drow. They hunt me and they hate me for those crimes and for my nature. I am an agent within an organization of no minor fame, one bent on the destruction of Lloth and..well that is enough of that."
Again the hand rested on his chin. "I am not sure why I am telling you these things."
She hid her smile behind another sip of coffee, savoring the flavor for a moment. Vera had something unique about her that no spell or charm could provide -- people just opened up to her, of all varieties. She would have made an excellent spy, had she a taste for such things. She always reasoned it had something to do with life energy and how it was attracted to her. It also made her attractive to all types of nightmarish creatures, her lips taking on a wry twist.
Clearing her throat she gave him a nonchalant shrug, "I'm just one of those types, I suppose."
Reigning in her blocks she set them stronger, her fingertips now toying with the edges of his book, her own forgotten tome left on a table a few paces back.
"Would I have a chance on meeting your mate at your shop? And what can you give me, to help lead me there?" Change of subject, her tone light and airy.
"No, her shop is not my shop. Hers is the DarkStar apothecary. She is often here though."
Smiling again, he inhaled sharply and blew out, willing another cloud of smoke to come from him. Patting it, he took a glance down to her feet, then back up to her eyes.
"It can either linger near your feet or it can be inhaled, only coming out when you would like it to. Either way, if you command it to find my house, or myself, it will lead you there, just once though." This time the smile was a little less reckless, a little more genuine.
Now that was a nice bit of varja, magic. Looking down at her own feet, clad only in her socks because she had left her shoes at her table, she wriggled her toes.
"Truly? But once you know the way, do you forget?"
The Gypsy knew the game, her gaze lifting to him, sly and mischievous.
"The house is a rip in many planes. It is linked to my...home. And I do not mean Ched'Nasad."
The smoky glass was raised; the wine emptied as he thought for a moment and added, "That all depends. If I want the person to return, they will remember the way. If I do not, the door will still be there, but it will be sealed. And breaking that seal would result in a highly upset dragon."
Once more she lowered her blocks, her eyes briefly closing while taking in another taste, smelling ozone in her mind, her skin shivering from a burst of electricity, current. She made a stronger note, feeling as though she might need it for later. It was different from Elis' of course -- they were different creatures. Of course only she was aware unless he too had the Talent.
And she meant it, finishing her coffee while she considered another one. "Dragon, you say? You didmention you are mostly dragon. You are of the rare type, I can see, that can assume a humanoid appearance. You prefer to appear as a Drow or is this something you can't control?"
Shrugging, he waved a hand around the room and said, ?I fit in poorly as a Drow, but I would literally not fit well in this setting. When I travel, I either use the smoke or fly. Back to the point though...I was born a Drow, gifted with the ability to shift. And the dragon that chose me was a rather large one. I would stretch the length of a few city blocks. Not fitting for a room. Rare? Yes. Shadow dragons are not common."
Pacing back to the bar, he took up a bottle of whiskey and made his way back to the table. It would appear this Drow also had a drinking problem.
Most did, Vera was not one to judge. She had her problems in the past. Having a daughter did help change that, her whole being set to protect this other half of her. She got up as well, wandering to the carafe still filled with coffee. Pouring herself a new mug she added a stick of cinnamon.
Clever Elis. Not bad at all for ... what he was. She took a seat at his table, feeling more than hearing the tick-tock-tick of the clock.
"I know,? she amended, ?having met a few dragons though most aren't up for socializing.
Though I suppose it would be hard to try, when you are a few city blocks long."
Smiling she played with her cinnamon stick. "Shadow dragon? Truly?"
Nodding again, he smiled and said, "Truly. As black as night, scales the color of darkness, wings the color of nothing, or so the stories say. On Faerun, there was only two."
At this point he laughed, the first real laugh, the sound oddly similar to water running across a reef. "I spent much of my life alone and almost forgot how to talk. I left Ched'Nasad and made my way to the surface at a young age, and 172 years later, I am here."
"Wow! I can't even begin to imagine that..." she murmured, taking another drink of her coffee, tilting her head. Thinking she bounded up and rescued his book from the bars counter. "Here, don't want you to forget this."
Dipping his head, he offered a half grin and murmured 'My items find there way back to me. So long as I draw it in the smoke it will come back to me. A thousand thanks, just the same."
Spreading his hands, he showed her empty palms, a sign of peace, and said "It was...peaceful."
A man outside starts to play an instrument and the sounds of a guitar filtered through even from the outside, making Vera turn her head towards the door. Blinking she rolled her shoulders into another shrug, her body shifting into a relaxing slump.
"I would hope so, though I doubt I could ever really understand." To be frank she wouldn't have the many years he did to even try. "Peace to me exists in only a moment, usually found while I'm reading."
Another shrug, each motion carefully practiced and executed. "A row might see fifteen hundred years. A dragon might see fifteen thousand years. I measure time in centuries, not minutes. And as such, peace is hard to find. But when it is found, it tends to last. I have found a small measure of peace here, but it will be shattered soon."
Now, that statement carried more than its share of misgivings, her brow wrinkling. She may be a Gypsy but she didn't deal in visions or prophecies. She didn't measure out lines in a palm to dish out warnings or good tidings.
Drinking her coffee she finally said, "Why do you think its going to be taken from you, your peace?"
"There is no think. I am hunted and I have been located. I do not care that they are coming, but others might."
The Drow was, oddly enough, a terrible liar and it showed. "My crimes have been so heinous that she would reach her eight legs across the planes to have me back."
Ah, yes. Funny how she could forget that awful lore -- and the Goddess that drove it.
Shifting in her chair again, trying to find a comfortable spot, she shook her head. "You seem very capable to me, you might have to put up a fight but I bet you come out all right. It might shatter your peace but ..." words failed her for a moment, her breath pulling in sharply. "This is about your mother and your sisters, huh? That means ..." Female Drows, descending on the very boardwalks of their city.
"You know, it might not just be your peace that is shattered ..." Mutters.
"Oh no. It will only be my peace. I mentioned before, I am an agent. To a human, each drow is an assassin. For a drow to call another drow assassin is another matter. She can send her minions, they will die. I am worried that she will move on someone else that is less capable. I can not be with her each day." The rand raised, fingers drumming on his chin before he said "For me? I am dragon kind. I will not be harmed."
Both brows rose, her nose twitching, fear slowly uncurling in the pit of her stomach, "From what I remember of most females," meaning the Drow, "they'll be entirely focused on the task of hurting you, or getting to you. But," The Gypsy stressed this word, her face frowning now, "everyone else in the way, or perceived in the way, is fair game."
And how did she know it!
"It won't matter if the person in the way is anything to you, they'll take them, take them or kill them. So, I'm very serious when I ask you this; how many? I do have a daughter and ya know, I would like to take
Raising an eyebrow toward the woman, he whispered, "You are telling me things I know. I have stood in front of the spider queen and laughed. She will be more careful, the Jeazred is more powerful then anyone can ever dream."
Shrugging again, he said "They will not even get there. I will meet them on my plane if I can But there will be nine."
He stood in front of a dark Fae Goddess and laughed? Man had balls of brass. Looking into her mug, she thought maybe Irish coffee would be better for this conversation. Without asking she reached out and snatched his whiskey, pouring herself a generous drop before giving it back.
"Nine? And you think you can keep them from wandering our streets? I sure hope so, but nine is quite a bit ... I mean..." She took a deep drink, the alcohol a new found burn on her tongue. Lovely.
"Isn't that extreme for a couple of deaths? What else did you do ...?"
This time the laugh was sarcastic, razor teeth shown again. "I have killed nine thousand or so of them. Nine is not an issue. And yes, it is extreme. I laughed at her, this is a crime. Murder, this is a crime. I created the war that destroyed my home city. I am a member of the Jeazred and I wear it openly. There are more, but they are pointless, yes?"
His hand dropped down, resting on the shimmering, dark red hand on his chest.
Oh, sure, for a dragon that must have just been another day at the office. She took another deep swallow of her new Irish coffee, still carrying the hint of cinnamon.
"Glad to see you so confident but you did mention that there is someone you can't be around twenty four hours. I take this to mean your mate?"
"Yes. That is what I meant. And while I normally pretend like I know all of the answers, I do not know this one. She has a powerful family and I assume that she will be fine." The shrug was only really half of the normal one this time and hurt floated over his face, accompanied by an ever rarer emotion.
Calculation flared for a moment in her eyes, quick and assessing of the situation. She rolled her shoulders and neck, easing the new found tension. Vera was not fond of Drow females, her back still sporting a few scars from her last encounter with one. They loved strong females but if they weren't Drow themselves, they enjoyed more in the breaking of them.
"Oh, I don't know, if she's lucky they might decide to keep her!" Caustic and cruel, she really couldn't stop the flow of her words, her lips wanting to turn themselves into a snarl. Memories had the tendency to do that to her.
Sigh, sigh, sigh.
"Eh, look..." She rubbed a hand across her face, "I doubt you need any sort of help from someone like me but I am good with protection charms and wards. Maybe I can offer something up, bit of a trade maybe. I would only ask for reports of what exactly is going on in your little war. Like I said, I have a daughter ..."
"She is drow as well. She would be hard to keep." Still, the thought shook him to the core, and it showed aas he took a step back and rolled his shoulders, fingers dancing on the edge of twin sheathes. "If she was taken, then I would take the war to them. The queen herself would burn, acid is most painful. I will die before she is taken."
Shrugging, he said, "If we speak again, I will tell you. Free of charge. Compassion is one of my weaknesses."
"Ah, good, prepare to have it exploited ..."
Blinking she refocused on him, amber eyes sharper than a knife.
"How exactly .... did you end up with a Drow as a mate?"
Million dollar question here.
"I am as much drow as I am dragon. Is it strange for a drow to seek a drow? Truth be told, she sought me. I met her here one night and she could not speak. So we spoke in the signs, and then we did it again. And again. And as I am sure you know, things like that turn into other things." Unfolding his arms, he shot a hand down towards the glass, raising it and drinking.
"I could explain more, but it is incredibly condescending."
She refrained from giving a very unlady like snort. No matter the type or blood, male was male. Go figure.
"Well, I'll take your word for it that she isn't the usual type of female."
She also highly doubted that the Drow would in fact, keep her. No, this lady Drow of his was going to be seen as a traitor to the whole race. Solved that question, since the Drow really only enslaved another Drow when that Drow was a male. She took another deep drink, filing away more information in her mind.
"I still want to greet and meet your mate. Should be interesting."
Also explained on why he had been so hesitant on first mentioning her. Thought she missed that, huh?
"She is often here, like I said. I make no effort in hiding our affiliation, so it is quite easy to see. They say that love is hard to hide, yes?" At this he stood and bowed, saying "I find that sitting is not comfortable. My mind does not fit in my body and it often feels cramped."
Looking up at him she shrugged, "Eh, then stand?" Another thought did occur to her.
"Oh! I'm Vera."
She held out her hand finally with a small smile, disregarding his quick defense of his mate. She understood and knew she would probably not be wholly comfortable around her. Memories and all that! Still, if she saw even a semi-friendly female Drow she would make her acquaintance.
"We've had a whole conversation and haven't even tried to introduce ourselves."
Nodding, he slipped back into a formal, curt bow and said "My name is CaelMal DulQue. That or Aec'Mish. Either works just as well."
What a mouthful. Fae were known for that, dragons too, now that she thought about it. Looking at her hand she took it back with a grin and a shrug.
"How about Cael or Mal? Something short and sweet. Oh! I could call you Mish." She had to, throwing in a tease. It was just her, Vera.
"I would most likely answer to any of those. Truth be told, I do not really care how others think of me or view me. It is just easier to fit in. I am arrogant enough to ignore the formalities."
Shrugging, the words held little arrogance, currently. He was just stating facts. 'I have not been called Aec'Mish in quite some time."
"Yeah, I like Mish."
He was newly dubbed in her mind as such, the Gypsy pulling a phone case from her jeans pocket. Tucked inside where little white cards, a fine copper plate type in bold scrawled across the front.
Her new business cards. The former trade of thief didn't allow for advertising but being a consultant did. She handed one to him, curious to see if he'd take it. It was a little modern but they did live in a realm of complexities.
"My card." God, did she love saying that.
Taking a moment to stare at the card, he shrugged and took it, dropping it into a pocket. "I will hang it on the wall of my shop. I do not have cards to give you." Another shrug moved his shoulders before he took another bow and said, "While this has been an?interesting conversation, I have business to attend to."
"Of course, it?s my off day so," she gave another trademark shrug, her smile a friendly thing on her face. "I'll stop by your shop, just to see if you really hang it up." She gave him a wink.
"I do not speak unless the words are true."
Leaving it at that, he stepped back and sighed. His form blurred and wavered before it shifted into a cloud of smoke, which made its way towards a crack in the wall and simply vanished.
It was her first time, really, coming back to the Red Dragon Inn after being away for so long.
Interesting... the people you meet.