Chapter 2.1 A Wrinkle in Time.   Posted by Guildmaster.Group: 0
 GM, 93 posts
Sun 7 Dec 2008
at 06:07
2.1 A Wrinkle in Time
Coloured a warm pastel the sky was cool and tiny stars, unaware of what had transpired on Aberhaven on the very same night shone, brightly and cheerily. But the colour of the sky did not betray the time of the dark. The sun seemed to have made a promise to never set neither did it wish to deal it's harsh rays on those down below.

The leaves caught the breeze and shivered gently, creating a gentle rustling sound that soothed the nerves of the pursued. Lucinda and Rhollin were standing in the middle of a dirt path about 2 feet wide and along the path was rows and rows of trees and shrubbery with no familiar landmarks in sight except for a row of calm looking mountains at the end of the horizon.

The portal that brought them here was not visible. Clearly, Petie who created the portal did not want anyone to be able to follow them through. But that was the drawback of creating such an exclusive portal - neither of them could return to where they came from lest they created another portal.

The serenity of the forest proved to be a stark difference to the chaos that prevailed at the Aberhaven Estate. Perhaps now they could recoup and assess their options...

This message was last edited by the GM at 06:12, Sun 07 Dec 2008.

Rhollin Grail
 player, 74 posts
 A savage heart
 a gentle heart
Sun 7 Dec 2008
at 06:08
Re: 2.1 A Wrinkle in Time
For all the knight-errant could tell, he was dreaming. Sorcery had reshaped his world and romance had tinted his senses. It took a long moment of absorbing the tranquil beauty before he could come out of his trance enough to hear Lucinda's words. Even then he was hardly sober, seeing her through his mask and behind hers. Nothing seemed real. Rhollin removed the heavy ceremonial mask, sucking in fresh air - that was real enough - before kneeling in front of the sorceress, bringing them to even height.

"Your sin, my rescue... so little of our entwined fates do I see clearly. Now is not the time for masks."

He brushed his hand across her face and removed her veil gently, then clasped her delicate hands in his rough grip. He was only vaguely aware of the portal fading away behind her - her face consumed his attention.

"What are you, Lucinda Blancoeur? A sorceress, yes, but that tells me no truths! They paint you as a criminal, whose magic makes real malicious whims. I, however, see a woman of power and passion, afraid and alone thus with nowhere to channel it. Have I come to protect you as I believe, or am I enchanted?"

Rhollin felt dizzy. His recent actions were hardly logical. But oh did he desire her. Was he being manipulated, or was the honorable knight more of a romantic than even he ever knew, swept up in the electricity of the moment?

"Am I your protector, or your slave?"

This message was last edited by the GM at 06:08, Sun 07 Dec 2008.

Lucinda Blancoeur
 player, 48 posts
 Sorceress in Distress
Wed 17 Dec 2008
at 13:18
Dedicated To the One I Love
The sylvan glade where Lucinda and Rhollin had come was the safe haven that the sorceress had intended; so it was for the moment, at least.

Their faces were inches apart, so close she could feel the heat of him and notice herself reflected in the dark, dusky amber of his eyes. The sun had set by now, but there was still enough light for Lucinda to see the sweep of his lashes as his glance caressed her, and the gleam of his teeth as his lips parted open to question her hold upon him.

“What enthrallment is this, milord?” she smiled into his eyes baring her innocent soul, and her sweet, lilting laughter wrapped around them. “Only that Magick which comes when stars collide,” she whispered, caressing him with words as gentle as a kiss.

Unaware she was doing so; Lucinda’s eyes roamed Rhollin’s face lovingly. “You are truly the most remarkable, wonderful man,” the enchantress sighed softly, and then she laid her head upon the broad leonine shoulder in so trusting a manner as to remove all doubt that the noble Knight of Grail was her champion, her protector, and the keeper of her heart.

After a long while, which the beguiled witch counted too short by half, Lucie stirred in the Leonyr’s embrace and tipped her face to him so that he might see her delicate features clearly in the glimmering candle glow that had come to surround them.

“If we are to pledge ourselves one to the other you must first know who I am and what I have done, milord,” Lucinda declared with quiet resolution. She saw no reason not to cut to the heart of the matter, and so, as she quietly confessed to Rhollin, Lucie's slender fingers lightly brushed the Grail lord’s brow and then his temples to make plain her sins and make greater his understanding.

“I am Lucinda Blancoeur,” truly spoke the maiden pure of heart, “sorceress in my own right and apprentice to Caalum Oldwizard of the Ivory Tower. A season past, in the still of the night, I did let loose a daemon upon the realm.”

The declaration hung between them, huge, sharp, poisonous.

“It is on account of willful disobedience and hubris beyond the pale that I was pilloried,” Lucie continued as guilelessly as before, but with quivering voice and trepid thoughts of what stark truth might cost her. “But that — that is not the worst of it, milord, and I — I shall not fault you if when hearing the rest you choose wisely to forsake me.”

This message was last edited by the player at 13:28, Wed 17 Dec 2008.

Rhollin Grail
 player, 79 posts
 A savage heart
 a gentle heart
Sat 20 Dec 2008
at 07:45
A Sweet Spell
Rhollin understood that he was enchanted. He was enchanted in the way his Lucie described, the very natural magic that arises from two hearts so close. His whole temperament shifted as she spoke further, his body first relaxing in trust, then shivering with excitement. Even such a well-trained knight couldn't hide these feelings.

As she caressed him he took in her unveiled face. To him it sparkled in the moonlight - jewel eyes, alabaster skin, copper locks - like a work of art. As she spoke of her dark deeds he felt a distance between them. It distracted him. But he came to realize it was not an emotional one, but a physical one. He yearned to touch her and his thick armor prevented it. Her words didn't discourage him one bit. When he broke their embrace it was only to allow it continue as it should.

"Dear Lucinda, I could never believe you would willfully unleash a horror on the world." He spoke this with resolute confidence. While he talked his began to undo his armor, taking off the pieces and arranging them together. There was a ritual to it, each part fitting together into a neat package, and he busied his hands with this long-practiced task while they spoke.

"I know nothing of sorcery. What I know is want and will. I know that you have the want to do right and the will to see it through. In fact, were this a different night I would end your story there, silence you with a kiss and pledge myself to you fully with no doubt. But it is not that night. It is a night of fear and danger back at the castle. If we are to be anything in the world - and I insist we must, for I shan't forsake my duties - there must be no secrets between us. Tell me your full story that I may defend you with honor and knowledge and not solely passion."
Lucinda Blancoeur
 player, 51 posts
 Sorceress in Distress
Fri 9 Jan 2009
at 06:44
Confession Is Good For the Soul
“Whispers came into my head. . .” Lucie offered him fragments that came in spurts; her fingers knotting then unknotting, her heart thrumming with fear of what Rhollin would think of her. “Indistinct, only half-spoken . . . compelling and irresistible . . . my own thoughts I thought them to be at first . . . haunting my dreams, seducing me. . .” And, because she was an enchantress, all that Lucie gave unto him came upon the Knight of Grail and filled his senses.

During the season that marked the end of her indenture, the inevitable finally came to pass. Calum Oldwizard’s sweet-tempered ward became undone. Curious to know all that her guardian forbade, frustrated by the many questions that he would not answer, and lured by the voice that beguiled her, Lucinda wandered the Tower in the dark of night, exploring behind every door that had ever been barred against her inquisitive nose. Having grown old enough to have her way as she wanted it, the sorcerer’s apprentice conspired to read every tome and to study each oddity that she came upon, learning a little of this and some of that, but not enough to make a difference. . .

“Night after night the voice beckoned . . .” Lucie’s telling grew husky and then faltered, and, although she thrilled when Rhollin gathered her up in his arms, she gently disentangled herself from him and retreated beyond his reach to stand alone in the candle glow that surrounded her.

In the wee hours of darkness as a tempest raged and flailed within and without, as the last candlemark of her taper flickered a tenuous light; beyond the last locked portal, in the foulest recess of the tower's dungeon, there Lucinda came upon an ancient chest, padlocked many times over. Embroidered upon the lock, beneath the dust and tarnish of hundreds of years, was an arcane inscription which Lucinda could not have deciphered, even if she had bothered to try. Arrogantly and innocently, believing that she was the equal of whatever the chest might hold, Lucinda took up the great key ring and sought among the many secrets for the few that would undo the locks. With a click, and a clack, and a click, the many bolts came loose and the chest gave up its treasure. . .

“You will despise me . . .” Lucie curled  her lower lip slowly between her teeth, unable to stop the flow of heat that rose  in her cheeks; and Rhollin could see fear and fire in her eyes, and he felt as she did the hot sting of tears welling in those sapphire pools as she continued her tale.

Buried within the heart of the box, beneath a strange black sand that was dark and powdery like granulated onyx, Lucinda discovered her undoing — a miniature crystal vial, glimmering bright from a blood-red lick of flame burning within. Despite the warning clamoring loud inside her head, the soft insidious voice was insistent. Lucinda was lost, unable to resist the temptation of the mysterious flask. Foolishly, and arrogant beyond all measure, bold as impetuous and bewitched youth, she took hold of the shimmering vial. Then, with a reckless twist of her wrist, Lucinda Blancoeur let loose her fate. . .

“Let me show you,” Lucie spoke nervously, her fear of Rhollin’s abhorrence making her breathless.

Holding fast his golden gaze, the sorceress slipped her fingers into the folds of her gown and withdrew a tiny, seemingly unremarkable flask that was warm from the heat of her flesh. Hesitantly, she extended the crystal for the knight's inspection, holding the piece cradled in the palm of her hand.

“’Twas the demon Valerian’s prison until I set him free, milord,”  bravely Lucie confessed the last of her truth, “and now ‘tis my affliction.”
Rhollin Grail
 player, 84 posts
 A savage heart
 a gentle heart
Sat 24 Jan 2009
at 23:19
Re: Confession Is Good For the Soul
The facts of the situation did not escape Rhollin. Lucie had given in to curiosity and temptation, something the Grail Knight would never succumb to. Or would I? Is she temptation, or my life mate? But no, he was a knight, he followed a code, one he would not break. Given the same circumstances he doubted he would act the same. But she was not a knight, she was a sorceress. What code did she follow? It was not for him to know, and thus not for him to judge. He might fail tests a sorceress would pass.

In the end, there was only one person in the world Rhollin Grail could control, and that was himself. You are a protector, Rhollin, and here you are given a test. But it is not the test you thought. It is not whether she is true or false; it is how you deal with her truth.

He reached forward, but placed his hands not around the flask, but squarely on her shoulders. Not exactly a romantic gesture, but when he looked her in the eye it was with purpose.

"A hero is not one who never falters, Lucinda. Heroes pick themselves back up after they falter. I am your knight and your protector. If you trust in me as your shield, together we can set this right. You have the strength to cure your affliction, and I will see to your safety as you do." And with this behind us, mayhap we can try at man and woman, instead of knight and mage.
Lucinda Blancoeur
 player, 56 posts
 Sorceress in Distress
Fri 6 Feb 2009
at 08:58
Re: Confession Is Good For the Soul
He grasped her by the shoulders. She returned his stare unfailingly, her face in the leaping light serenely beautiful. Here was her rescuer -- the glorious Knight of Grail – and Lucinda’s world narrowed to him.

“You are a brave heart to defend me against Valerian when all in Aberhaven would have me stand alone, milord,” the sorceress declared earnestly, and in her heart of hearts Lucinda joyfully promised. . . I freely cede to you all that he would take from me.

“But this you must know, good knight --  that the demon has sworn to imprison me just as I and mine have done to him, so many centuries entombed with neither pity nor surcease. Thus, I am doomed to flight from Valerian even as I am obliged to seek him out and destroy him.”

“This is my affliction,” Lucie’s husky voice quavered as her trembling fingers uncurled around the crystal vial as she again extended her hand, “that I live and breathe in constant trepidation as I pursue mine nemesis, not knowing if this accursed flask is to be his prison or my own.”

Once squarely in front of the portal's swirling dark mass, the figure reached out calmly to touch the portal's surface...

A frisson of energy rippled about her, and, as man and maid looked upon the bit of glass, the crystal took on a pink and then reddish hue from a lick of red flame that came slowly to flicker within.

“’Twas arrogance and foolhardiness that brought me to this,” Lucie cried out, her blue eyes wide and dark with fright. “In truth,  even now Valerian touches me, and still I have no plan that will serve. I came bold and brazen to the Duke’s masquerade with thought to flush the devil out into the open. . .” Lucie’s explanation faltered as tears of desperation brimmed on her lashes, and she curled her fingers tight about the enchanted piece, for she was unwilling to look upon it any longer.

“I know that this is strange and mysterious and that you do not understand all, dearest Rhollin,” Lucie’s whisper caressed the Leonyr, and her emotion was whole and unadulterated, wrapping her champion in intimacy as she met his glance and bared her soul, “and yet you pledge your shield and sword without question and you place your life and destiny in jeopardy . . . without wavering . . . for me.”

A shimmer of golden light passed from Lucie to Rhollin and then she was in his arms and her soft kiss was upon his lips.

“This I swear before the Watcher, on all that is holy and pure within me,” Lucie spoke her promise softly but Rhollin heard every word, “that I shall do no less for you, brave Knight of Grail.  And, in the darkest hours, when this ordeal would break us, I shall come to you as woman comes to man and restore your strength with all that is mine to give you.”
Rhollin Grail
 player, 88 posts
 A savage heart
 a gentle heart
Sat 14 Feb 2009
at 23:50
Re: Confession Is Good For the Soul
Rhollin held her close and opened himself to her tale, her story unfolding chaotically in his mind's eye. Sorcery and demons, other worlds and alternate times, it all made so little sense to him. He conjured only an image of some dark and oppressive hell, alternatively holding a twisted monster and a lonely woman.

"'Tis truth you speak of my failings as a stranger, for I indeed do not understand. I am a simple creature - honest, proud, and true - but simple. The strangeness and fear, burden and responsibility that your story carries... such a story to be told by a girl soft and sweet. I am a warrior, and yet I know nothing."

The image of Lucie entombed became rooted in his mind, to the exclusion of all else, and he couldn't bear it. When her skin touched his it surprised him how his devotion to her stirred, and how it had little to do with honor and duty.

"What I lack in wisdom in these matters I replace with courage. I swear I will never doubt, never stray, and never falter. Valerian may be man or demon or god, yet he will not break me, and thus will not harm you."

Her promise to him was impossible to ignore, but Rhollin reluctantly set it aside for the moment, kept in his heart so his mind could focus on the fight ahead. No warrior in the world could think straight with a fey beauty melting in his arms, whispering promises of love and flesh!

"Speak no more of coming to me. I will have you as woman and love, but only after this ordeal, as you say. Come; lead the way back to the fiend before its chaos spreads."
 GM, 117 posts
Thu 19 Feb 2009
at 02:00
2.1 A Wrinkle in Time
The time spent sharing their hearts seemed so short for the two newly found lovers. However, both of them knew that they couldn't linger in the midst of this great forest any longer. Who knew who or what was watching them within these depths? Also,

With Lucinda's waning strength due to her previous conjuration and regardless of Sir Rhollin's martial prowess, the prospect of Valerian appearing through Lucinda's portal to finish what he came for seemed apparent..

With Valerian was on the loose and Lucinda could not hope to conjure advice her familiar, Petie, another portal to bring them back from whence they came - it was too dangerous.

Apologizing for the inability to return them to the Mansion by magic, Lucinda however had enough energy to conjure a magical compass that directed their way back to the city of Aberhaven.

Thus, the duo, with Petie, had no choice but to start their long trek out of the woods, and hopefully make it back to the Mansion as soon as possible without meeting more danger.

This message was last edited by the GM at 02:03, Thu 19 Feb 2009.