Lost Legends


Deciding to stick with her original plan Cercei continued south through the valley, moving soundlessly through the tree's. Had she been seen by anyone they would have seen her long slender limbs dancing through the leaf litter as silently as a cat, dressed in tight fitting trews, knee length boots and gillet showing off the intricate spiralling tattoo's on her arms flowing from shoulder to wrist. Her long red hair flowed out behind a single braid running down her left cheek held in place by a piece of ribbon she'd bartered for when she was an unmarked child, she smiled at the memory and the scolding she'd received from father for buying such a trinket.
With the midday sun high in the sky Cercei sat on the banks of the small stream that flowed southwards through the valleys bottom towards the towns. It was peaceful here by the calm waters, removing her boots she gently placed her feet into the cool water and watched it flow, small fish darted in and around her feet, they were far too small to bond with, they were even too small to even comptemplate eating, besides to do so would require her to make a spear and she was far too relaxed to go to such effort at the moment.
She was a little dissapoineted that she hadn't met any animals yet, she'd seen a deer dart through the tree's, litterally through the tree's, startled by her approach but that had been all.
Lacing her long slender fingers behind her head she lay back onto the grass bank, and quielty hummed a tune she'd learnt as a child, it was a love song naturally, it told of a fair maidens unrequited love and how in her despair she'd made a bargain with a witch.
Overhead a flock of geese flew south gliding through the air, oh what it'd be like to fly? she mused to herself as she lay in the warm summer sun.
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James the Hunter

Gunnar moved his eyebrow in surprise.

"A Shade? I have not heard that in awhile. A story I was told when I was a child. I mean, when I was younger. With the power you hold, I will not say you are a liar. Most people who claim to be something are not what they claim, but you...you have that aura about you that says different," he said to her.

"Now, to answer your question my lady, I was simply sitting here. I love the sea. I was born, like all Odin's, on a boat. Taken out to sea as my mother gave birth. Anyways, I was simply sitting here, and saw this creature's tentacle move. I yelled out to it, thinking it may be Cthulhu. Childish and foolish," he said. With the last sentence, he chuckled, smiling again. A shot of pain came from his right cheek, and he put his hand on it. "Blasted smile..." he muttered.

"As I was saying, the creature came up and we talked. I've already told you what happened afterwards."

Gunnar sat down again, still looking at the woman who helped him. He pulled off his backpack, sifting through it for his two sandwiches of lettuce and tomato. He pulled both out. He held one out to the woman and said,"Join me for lunch?"

Lord Regal

Campfire Guardian
Kyana laughed derisively. "Do not fool yourself. I am not a creature of magic. I am human...from Soria, obviously. Rather...the king gave us the name both because of our dress and as a play on words from our surname...which again I will not tell you." She wondered briefly why her anger hadn't sparked throughout the conversation...his tone at the beginning hadn't been pleasant, but even that had not angered her. She decided it was because Tiralka had just fed and was happy, having that happiness rebound across their link. He had not spoken to her since the unexpected detour...odd, for him. Another thing the Shades had all accomplished was a link so strong they could actually talk, rather than communicate through emotions. However, he had said nothing.

At the suggestion that she stay for lunch, hesitation crossed Kyana's eyes. However, they quickly hardened. "I cannot. The king has all three of us out on a very crucial job, and I have to get back to it." She climbed onto Tiralka, who began to slide back towards the water. "Farewell." she nodded curtly, before entering the water again. Patting Tiralka's side, she told him to go deep. "We found nothing close to the surface...we must need to go deeper."


Mandan had been traveling for some time when he came to a stream. It was near midday, and he stopped so he and Shak could quench their thirst. While doing so, a soft humming came through from downriver. Mandan froze and quickly pulled his cloth over his face, but the person wasn't in sight. Relaxing, he had bent down to take another drink when a young man came through, without an animal. Cursing silently, Mandan quickly jumped behind a tree, telling Shak to do the same. Once out of sight, he quickly jumped on Shak and the two of them bounded away.


Jonathan had just reached the stream that turned into the river Malkirk sat on to take a drink when something caught his eye...a flash of black. Looking intently at where the flash came from, he saw nothing, so he shrugged and took his drink. He too heard the humming, but unlike Mandan, he decided to act on it...company would be nice, and to be honest, the song was eerie, but in a comforting way. He headed in the direction that he had heard the song, and soon found Cercei. He recognized the spiraling symbols on her face as a nomadic tribe...the name escaped him, but he knew they occasionally passed through Malkirk. Not wanting to startle her, as she hadn't noticed him yet, he walked a little closer, close enough to greet her without having to shout. It was also clear that she was also on her journey to find her animal, as there was not one with her. "Hello..." he said, just loud enough to hear.


Name: Pope Lirkih
Gender: Male
Appearance: Relatively short - a mere 5' 2. Red, curly, shoulder length hair, with a short beard. Green eyes.
Personality: Overall, he's rather merry - always likes to look at the brighter side. However, he can get rather ruthless if his height is the butt of a joke. In general, though, he's fun to be around and makes friends easily. His studies are not the top of his list, but he is no idiot.
Hometown: Yryticah, a farmer's land of rolling pastures and open skies
Parents: Manuel and Dinah Lirkih: A watery badger and an icy quail.
Skills: Pros - Likable by many; Skilled in fighting, as well as other physical attributes; Good negotiator
Cons - Mental challenges and problem solving are not his strong suit; Can get hotheaded (see above)
Animal Hope: Prefers more unusual forest-dwelling animals. However, creatures of the sea appeal to him also.
Bio: Pope grew up as a farmer's son, always doing what he's told and doing it well. He would look forward to those times when his father would give him a couple hours on his own, and he would go the edge of his land and gaze at the wilderness. He would lose himself there, and marvel in the simplicity of his life. He had friends, also, that he would often hang around, causing their own mischief and thoroughly have fun. Now that he is eighteen, he's ready to embark on his own on the search for his animal friend.


Cercei jumped to her feet in shock ready to flee back into the woods at the slightest sign of hostility. However upon sighting the boy, a towns folk judging from his clothes she felt rather foolish. He was tall with long blonde hair and to be frank rather handsome and also judging by the lack of any form of animal he was on the test like she was herself.
Still barefooted Cercei shyly smiled brushing a lock of hair away from her dazzling green eyes "Sorry I was miles away...I am always drifting off like that, well not all the time, but some of the time..." she was babbling, she'd never babbled befor, Pull yourself together or you'll scare him off....Oh gods now I sound like my mother.
"My...My names Cercei...May I ask your name?"


Fren opened her eyes as an unearthly roar filled the night. She sat bolt upright and glanced around at her surroundings. She narrowed her eyes as they adjusted to the darkness. She heard nothing, which indicated true danger being in the area. She hopped up to her feet, perched on the edge of the wall, and watched the darkness intently. Her attention was drawn toward a large crunching step in the forest, followed by the crack of the bough of a tree. She stood up on the wall, and dropped down the the overgrown cobblestone roadway. She looked over her shoulder as she heard a growl behind her. She saw the golden eyes of the sky cat peering out from within its den. The cat flicked its head in her direction, huffing at her. She mewled back at it, patting it on its large head, turned and slunk off toward the direction she'd heard the noise coming from.

As she moved through the shadows, she heard several more large steps being taken, and her curiosity soon overwhelmed better judgement. She jerked her head to the right as another bough cracked loudly, and the loud step of its owner dropped nearby. She scrambled up into a tree and perched on one of the boughs. She screeched out a warning call of the greatly feared howler beast. The answering roar caused her to scream and cover her ears. She smelled rotten meat, and felt the hot fetid air of the beast wash passed her. She hugged the trunk of the tree and cautiously peered around it.

She'd never seen an animal like this. Others referred to it as a thunder lizard, a rare animal to be seen, and even rarer in this part of the world. An enormous lizard that stood upright and easily one of the more powerful land animals. She tilted her head as she looked at it move through the forest in her direction. The beast was large enough to power its way through ancient tree boughs, snapping them like twigs against its mighty weight. Fren retreated further up the tree, until she was perched near the very top of the canopy. She held on for dear life as the thunder lizard passed below, causing the tree to shake violently back and forth as it brushed against it.

Fren held on tightly, whimpering as the beast moved passed, and further into the forest. She looked at the canopy, and saw the wake of destruction left by the lizard. It led from the mountain ranges, and was headed for the coast. She waited for several minutes, as she watched the leaves of the trees quiver. She climbed back down, and loped off toward the village. She slunk through the shadows, seriously culled by the sight of the large beast. She located the den of the sky cat, quietly entered and curled up in the corner to sleep the rest of the night away.

Lord Regal

Campfire Guardian
Jonathan could tell he'd flustered Cercei by his sudden appearance, and he felt bad...he'd tried to not startle her, but he'd obviously failed in that. He had to admit, Cercei definitely wasn't bad looking. In answer to her question, he replied, "I'm Jonathan. Nice to meet you." He gestured to the stream, "I live several miles south of here...this stream's a river by then." Inwardly he berated himself. Oh yeah, give her a fact that means absolutely nothing...that's the way to make friends. he thought. Trying to recover, he asked, "How's your search for your animal partner going?"


Mandan had heard the roar, causing him and Shak to race toward the sound. Upon finding the thunder lizard, the pair abruptly stopped. The beast wasn't a Legend, but it was certainly not too far down the rare chain from that. Mandan and Shak conversed for a moment, trying to determine if the beast would please the king. In the middle of their discussion Mandan abruptly looked up. "It appears my sister is to join us." he said.


Name: Lara Shaydaak
Age: Unknown
Gender: Female
Appearance: As one of the three Shades, She has long black hair, and always covers the rest of her body with black fabric...aside from her eyes. The eyes are the main way to tell him apart from her siblings...each of their eyes is a different color. She has bright green eyes. Also, unlike Kyana, Lara has the figure of a woman, giving a second way to distinguish her from the others.
Personality: The most compassionate of the three, but also fiercely loyal. Tries to think things through before acting.
Hometown: Unkown
Parents: Unknown
Skills: Fighting, aerial battles, has random spurts of clairvoyance. Not able to distance herself from her own doubts.
Animal: Stone Vulture, Makal
Bio: Lara is the oldest of the Shades, although she is somewhere in her mid-twenties. Very little is known of her or her siblings' past. She has the strongest bond between herself and her animal, having had the longest time to work with her. She is the only one who is comfortable in the air, and is known for her aerial fighting masterwork. Each of the Shades has a name they are known by. She is known as the Airstriker.


Lara swiftly descended while standing on Makal, spying Mandan on the ground. He had obviously been drawn here by the creature's roars. She and Makal reached the ground, and she deftly stepped off. "Greetings Mandan. I assume you found this creature thinking it was a Legend?" she asked. The response was a curt nod. Lara sighed. "When will you realize it doesn't hurt to talk?" No response was forthcoming, so Lara continued. "While this creature is certainly rare, it is not a Legend. The king will not accept this beast." She looked at the lizard almost willy. "I can only hope it finds the caring human it deserves...so many would abuse that power...so many."

"Sister...did something seem...off about the king to you when we last talked to him?" Mandan asked, speaking for the first time.

Lara was surprised by the question. "Now that you mention it...perhaps...I will see if I can manipulate my next...episode...into determining what it is that the king wishes to hide." She smiled as Mandan's eyes widened. "Oh come on, you didn't think that I didn't notice that. Kyana wouldn't, but you and I think alike." She climbed back onto Makal. "Back to the search, then. Until next time, Mandan." Mandan merely raised his hand in salute. Once Lara had taken flight, Mandan mounted Shak and rode away.
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James the Hunter

Gunnar finished his sandwich, re-packed the other, then looked back out to the sea. He thought long and hard for a second, then, he stood up. He took off his chainmail, then his shirt, and then his sword and belt. He pulled off his shoes, storing them all in the backpack. He left the backpack on the beach, and ran into the waves.

He walked out to waist length, then dived into the salty water. He swam like a professional, gliding through the roaring waves like they were nothing.

"I shall swim for an hour or so. My luck might change. If not, I shall return to the beach, put my clothes back on, then travel south," he thought to himself. Then again, why should he? The sea was great and beautiful. He was happy here in the water, like all Odin's.


Sneezle looked deep into the rat's eyes, as it touched the tip of his nose with a single paw. The rat's whiskers twitched with the excitement that had just occurred and the whole new feeling of consciousness that he could feel in the back of his mind. It was as if, to both Sneezle and the rodent, a new mind had been born into their own minds, as if they shared a common lifeline with another. It was slightly uncomfortable to both of them, as if their thoughts were aired for the entire world to hear and critique.

"Thank you, my little friend." Sneezle spoke aloud, as he slowly sat up straight. It was an amazing feeling, to be without pain after so long filled with it. Sneezle had, just a few moments beforehand, had the knowledge that he would be one of the very few that died during their quest for their Spirit Animal. Sneezle felt slightly dizzy and nauseous thinking about how close he had come to losing his life, all for chasing after a silly wolf.

He didn't want to continue thinking about it, so, as he stood and looked out over the valleys, streams and lakes, he held his friend on high and spoke in body and spirit, his words, once again echoing down through the trees and across the water, reaching his hometown, and possibly beyond. "What shall I call you?" He asked "What should I call my rescuer?"

As Sneezle stood, on the edge of that massive drop, the rat held out in front of him, like a conquering hero's banner, a single name echoed through his mind, almost as if it had been placed there by an outside presence: Baldrick. The insistent voice said it again "Baldrick."

"Baldrick?" Sneezle asked the rat.

Baldrick moved his head up and down in an affirmative gesture.

Smiling, Sneezle put Baldrick upon his shoulder and he clutched the strands of clothing, securing his place upon his new friend's shoulder. They sat off down the mountain, homeward bound.


Pope was wandering through the forest. All of his life, he had gazed at these wonderous woods, anticipating the day that he would finally be able to traverse through them. He had found a log to sit on for a bit, while he marveled the beauty of the forest from the inside. Just then, something hard hit him in the back of the neck. He looked up to see a squirrel throwing acorns at him. It threw another. These were harder than acorns, however. He picked one up and saw that it was a small stone. This was a stone squirrel! He was pelted in the head again, so he took the one in his hand and chucked it in the squirrel's direction. Not to hurt it, of course, just to scare it off. The squirrel squeaked angrily and ran away. Obviously not my animal partner he thought. He stood back up and went along on his path.


"Not too well to be honest" Cercei laughed nervously, her hand absently playing with the braid in her hair. she was bad at small talk especially with boys she never knew what to say and to be honest she was terrified that they would just laugh at her.
Through desperation she plucked the first thing from her mind and started talking "I thought I might head towards the Carraig Dubh mountains..." from the blank look she recieved Cercei realised that he didn't understand a word she was saying, probably due to the fact that he didn't speak Sais.
"they're a little way east of here...we...we could go together...if...if you want to?" she smiled nervously feeling every bit a fool, Why did you ask him to go with you? he's going to laugh at you and then your going to cry, just like the last time.
It had been a long time ago, she hadn't even received her marks yet but it still hurt, they'd made her feel small.
Her nerve broke, quickly picking her boots off of the bank she spoke quietly "I am sorry it was a silly idea... i'll just get going"

James the Hunter

Gunnar had been swimming for half an hour. He stopped, resting his arms. He floated in the great blue, lying on his back. He stared up into the sky as it started to rain. He closed his eyes, feeling at peace. Nothing could disrupt him from this beautiful tranquility he had in his soul. Thoughts floated through his head.

Am I worthy of claiming a legend such as Cthulhu? Or Fenrir? Nay, I am simply a man with a dream. But I must go on, and I must try and find them.

Then again, my father went forth searching for Fenrir, but found Charles instead. Maybe I will have the same path.

He continued to think, floating still. He felt something touch his back, a slimy kind of feeling. His eyes quickly opened, and as he did, he felt himself being pulled down into the depth from his waist. He was brought down violently and quickly, having no time to regain his composure or his thoughts. He was turned around, his eyes wide open. He could not tell what this beast was, but he could tell it was something...large. It kept Gunnar in place, staring at him. Gunnar was worrying about not being able to breath under the sea, but he felt as if he could. The water did not bother him, and it felt like air.

Gunnar was left in the arm of the great beast. He waited, seeing what this beast would do to him.

Lord Regal

Campfire Guardian
While Jonathan didn't quite understand what Cercei was saying until she switched to his own language, he got the gist of it. Upon her backing out of her suggestion that they head to the mountains together, he said quickly, "Actually, that'd be a great idea. Animals up there are a lot different than down here, and I've heard the mountains are dangerous to traverse alone. I'd love to come with you." At this point he felt self-conscious and added "If you'll have me, of course." He wondered if he'd been too forward, after all he'd just met her. However, everything he'd said had been the truth, so that couldn't hurt, could it?


At the Capital

The king was looking over some new decree when an old man entered. Petra smiled widely as he recognized him. He was the Storyteller. He must have had another name, but no one knew it. The Storyteller was famous throughout all of Soria. He traveled the world, and whenever he came to a town he'd go among the people. He'd find someone who was willing to feed him and give him a bed for the night, and in return he'd tell them a story. The Storyteller knew every story ever told, or so he said, and you could either request a story or ask him to pick one. When he was in the capital he also always stopped at the castle for the same purpose.

After the seemingly mandatory pleasantries, the Storyteller inquired what story Petra would like to hear. "I'd like to hear one about the Legends." he replied. "What they were like, what powers they had..." The Storyteller nodded. "Very well then...let us begin."

Ages and ages ago, Soria was a much simpler place. There was no Capital, or if there was, it was not known by that name. The people were scattered, and many were distrul of one another. Other nations raided the towns near the borders frequently, and although the Sorians of that time had animals, they did not know how to fight. Now, one young boy by the name of Lardan lived in one of these towns that the raiders frequented. He became angry...angry at the fate of his town to be raided, and that no one would help the town. He vowed to change things when he turned eighteen.

Now in the due course of time Lardan was sent out to find his animal partner. His parents wanted him to find an animal that suited him, as has been the tradition, but Lardan knew he must have a Great Beast in order to unite the land. Great Beasts, of course, were what Legends were called in that time. Lardan traveled over most of Soria before finally dropped of exhaustion, near death. He cursed his ill fortune, that even though he had the noblest of purposes, he could not find a Beast. It was then that a dragon came upon him. Hearing his plight, the dragon was moved, and it brought him to a place high in the mountains. There was a valley of a sort in the center, and this was where the Great Beasts met to discuss events throughout Soria, for they were all wise and knew the ways of the world. When the dragon bearing Lardan reached this valley, it told all what it had heard. A pegasus was then asked to heal the boy, which it did. Lardan then was asked to relate the events that had brought him here. When the Beasts heard his tale, they were very moved and pledged to help Lardan unite Soria, for they too believed it was the only chance the land had to survive. The dragon that had first met Lardan bonded with the boy in order to better assist him. It then told him that all of the Beasts had power over two different things...and the eldest of them had three powers at their command. United, Lardan, his dragon, and the Beasts swarmed across Soria.

The people in each village and nomadic tribe were understandably terrified when a Great Beast appeared before them, but they pledged their strength to the cause as the Beast explained the situation. When all of Soria had been united, together they drove out the raiding parties and bandits who had infested their land, with Lardan and his dragon at the head. When the work was done, the people and Beasts held a conference. It was decided that in order to prevent such a complete invasion from occurring again, a great Capital would be erected in the center of Soria, from whence a king, elected by the people, would rule over and protect all of Soria. The work took a decade, but the great Capital and palace we have today was constructed. The people then voted Lardan their king, as he had led them wisely throughout the battles. He ruled until he was 100, then died peacefully. His dragon vanished shortly after the funeral, and was never seen again.

Over time, the Beasts became harder and harder to find, until they finally became the Legends we know them as today. The Valley of Meetings that we know of now lies empty of any animal, as if it is cursed. The king is no longer elected, but goes through a bloodline. Much has changed since then, but every word is true.

With that the Storyteller bent his head, and fell silent.


Cercei stood there stunned, He wasn't laughing at her in fact he actually wanted to join her this was all a little too much for Cercei who found she couldn't stop herself from smiling
"I'd love for you to join me.." Cercei stopped realising that she was getting over excited, taking a couple of deep breaths she pulled on her boots "Follow me I know of a short cut through the tree's"
"Agus as an ghleann Ladran agus a Dragon raibh a eitilt chun síocháin a thabhairt ar fad de Soria" she sang the folk song to herself as she skipped gracefully from stone to stone crossing the stream.
Pausing on the opposite bank she smiled and waved to Jonathan "This way if we're quick we might reach the mountains before nightfall"


Fren woke with a start and sat upright. She looked around at her surroundings, and relaxed. She stretched languidly, and stood up. She moved out of the sky cat's den and out into the ruins. She climbed up onto the exterior wall, and perched upon the top. She crossed her ankles, and swung her legs idly as she looked out into the forest. She tugged her reed flute out of her belt and began to play. Her tune consisted of mostly minor keys, and trills. It was pleasant sounding, but as much jibber jabber as her own communications, and fit her personality quite well as she bobbed her head left and right with her song's tempo.

Soon a small mud slinger flew over to a nearby branch and watched Fren with its head cocked to the side. The bird sang its own song, causing Fren to pause. She grinned as she listened to the bird song, and began to play counter point on her flute. Her face fell as the bird took flight, and she stopped playing, shielded her eyes as she looked up into the rising sun, to watch the bird fly away. She sighed, tucked the flute away and hopped down to the forest floor. As she foraged amongst the base of the wall, she whistled the bird's song perfectly.

She looked up as the bird returned and sang to her again. She giggled and whistled the same song back at the bird. The bird sang an octave higher, and Fren followed suit. The mud slinger kept singing its song, and Fren raised it one more octave and laughed as the bird took flight again. She returned to digging through the soft soil. She pulled out what she thought was a rock, and gave pause as she dropped it and the noise rang rather than thudded against another rock. She picked the object up and brushed her grubby fingers over it. She saw designs and streaks of shiny metal becoming uncovered as she worked at rubbing the grime away. She leaned over and spat on the object and wrapped it in her dress to clean it further.

She set it on her palm and looked at the object, tilting her head to the side. She traced her small fingertips over the five stars that were raised slightly off the rest of the surface. She turned it over and looked at the three wavy lines with a diagonal slash through them. She looked around, and tugged out several strands of long grass. She sat cross-legged in the dirt, and began to tear the blades of grass into thinner strands with her teeth. She wrapped the strands together, looped the long string through a hole in the medallion and tied it around her neck. She looked back at the wall, and began foraging once again as she began to whistle the mud slinger song again.
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Lord Regal

Campfire Guardian
Jonathan couldn't help but smile at Cercei's enthusiasm. He followed across the stone path, not gracefully, but confidently. Upon making it across, and hearing her claim that they could reach the mountains by dark, a surprised look flashed across his face. "Is the shortcut really that fast?" He whistled appreciatively. "The only way I know how to get there would take almost a day...well, lead on then." He grinned.


Mandan hadn't gone too far before stopping to rest. The lizard had drained him of his vitality, not literally, but the shock of seeing something so big and powerful had made him feel worthless by comparison. He was just about to start looking for edible plants when a mud slinger started singing, followed by another. Shak looked up at Mandan. I could use a bite to eat, he said through the mental link. Mandan nodded. "I can wait a couple minutes...let's go." Together they bounded off towards the sound. They soon burst into a clearing of sorts. There was no mud slinger, but a girl whistling a tune that sounded exactly like the bird. Shak growled in disappointment, causing the girl to whip around, surprised. Mandan cursed and made to jump, but something in the girl's expression made his fear lessen significantly. Something wasn't...quite right with her. He didn't move, standing completely still except for his breathing and the occasional blink. Shak had moved closer to his partner in case the girl served to be a foe. The two of them didn't move...waiting...


As Sneezle and Baldrick traveled further down from the mountains, they were struck by the way their lungs had adapted to the small amount of air so high above the tree line. Baldrick found easy hand and footholds in the huge amount of clothing Sneezle had to wear to be up this high and not freeze to death, clutching excitedly to his soul partner the rat marveled at what kind of luck had brought him to this fallen teenager. He wondered about what kind of life he would be leading from now on. Baldrick knew next to nothing about the boy he bonded with, he did not know his name, where he lived or about his family. Family, the word made Bladrick's eyes widen, how could he have almost forgotten about his family.

Baldrick reached up and tugged on some flappy appendage attached to the side of Sneezle's head. A fork was coming up in the trail, if Sneezle took the right fork, they would be heading away from the tree where Baldrick and his family made their home. The treeline was looming up ahead of the pair and Baldrick tried desperately to make his partner turn down the left hand trail, but to no avail, for Sneezle's ears were numb from the cold. Finally, Baldrick screamed out, in body and spirit "Left! Turn left!". Audibly, a mere squeak was sounded across the rock and ice ladden trail, but inside Sneezle's mind the words were clear and concise. He turned left.

As Sneezle and Baldrick moved left and entered the tree line, Sneezle took Baldrick from his shoulder and held him in two hands in front of him. There was something about the way the rat squeaked at the moment the words came to his mind, did Baldrick just tell him to turn left? "Why are we going left?" Sneezle asked, looking him in his tiny eyes.

"Family. Big Tree." Once again, Baldrick squeaked as the words went through his mind.

So, was that Baldrick's power? He could speak to you? No, it couldn't be, is mother's cat could tell the future and speak in anyone's mind she wanted to, so it seemed all animals could communicate that way. "Baldrick, what exactly do you do?" Sneezle asked, as a huge tree came into view, about one hundred yards away.

There was no answer, but Baldrick looked questioningly at Sneezle, as if he didn't understand the question. His eyes narrowed slightly and his eyebrows raised, as Baldrick's mind finally wrapped itself around the question. He shook his head in a negative manner. He either didn't have one, or didn't know it.


The day was good, Mr. Blue Sky decided it was his turn to play today. All creatures bright and beautiful were playing around, having their fun, doing their thing, under the bright blue sky of a beautiful day. Rolf was feeling happy after a good night's rest, and a light breakfast of a veggie roll, special recipe. Though he hadn't found an animal companion yet, Rolf felt that he would get lucky soon. A few potential candidates came up, an electric squirrel thing with yellow fur, a turtle with mastery of water, a fire bird, but none were willing to be companionated with Rolf. But that was of no matter, soon there would be an animal to companionate with Rolf.

As the days passed, Rolf journeyed to the southwest, farther and farther away from his home. On the dawn of the fourth day, Rolf ran out of food, now he had to survive on foraged food. Tales from other countries said he could hunt animals, and eat them, but that was forbidden, and why would one want to eat the flesh of animals in the first place? Rolf laughed at this crazy thought, then sobered up. It wasn't a laughing matter. But, his destination had come up, the Black Rock mountains, known in these parts as the Carraig Dubh if Rolf was reading his map correctly. He knew the language of the area well enough, had to if he was going to be garrison, sometimes peace was required in strange parts. The mountains were imposing, and it was getting dark. Rolf decided to sleep at the base of the mountain until daylight.


"A day?...Which way are you going?" Cercei frowned, before realisation dawned upon her "Oh you don't know about the pathway do you? Well you’re in for a treat" She lead Jonathon swiftly through the tree's bird song surrounding them as they went.
After an hour or so of walking the woodland began to get increasingly dense and harder going as more and more gorse bushes appeared catching on their clothes and scratching their skin, at one point Cercei was forced to hack a path through using her Kukri in order for them to continue.
Cercei could hear Jonathon behind her no doubt he thought she was being foolish and leading him on a wild goose chase and a painful one at that, she feared that at any moment he’d turn and leave her so it was a relief when she spotted the opening just up ahead.
Beneath the gorse and bracken that covered the valley, or at least this particular part of the valley, there was a small opening just big enough for a person to slide through without being torn to shreds. Getting down on the ground Cercei began to slide herself through "Its just through here...You'll like it...I promise" she smiled up at him nervously before sliding through the opening and down a steep bank of earth; her feet hit the ancient cobbles.
The pathway never failed to impress her, ancient cobbles laid centuries ago by the old ones stretched as far as the eye could see between the two steep banks of earth and stone. The tree’s that grew either side of it blocked most of the suns light effectively forming a tunnel around them leading eastwards towards the mountains.
Dappled sunlight danced around her feet as the living roof moved and swayed in the breeze.
A crunch of gravel, interrupting the silence of the pathway signalled Jonathan’s arrival “See what did I tell you? Do…Do you like it?”

Lord Regal

Campfire Guardian
Jonathan had followed Cercei through the path, occasionally wincing as a particularly sharp gorse bush scratched him. He didn't question Cercei though, as there'd be no point in going through this area just to mock him...after all, she was leading the way, meaning more of the bushes scratched her than him. Upon her announcing they had arrived and scurrying under what was the thickest patch of the bushes yet, Jonathan followed, now more than a little perplexed. Once he got through though, it was simply incredible. The path was obviously left over from a long gone society. There was a sense of history about this place. "Wow..." he exclaimed in awe. "This place is amazing...how did you know about this place...and while we're at it, why is this here?" A large shadow abruptly fell over the group, and wingbeats filled the air. "I can answer that last question.", Lara responded.

Looking up quickly, Jonathan saw the large vulture that was Makal and let his mouth fall open. Cercei was obviously similarly shocked. Makal flew a slight distance so that she was not directly above them, allowing the pair to see Lara. The eldest Shade pointed towards the mountain. "This path was created to give humans the ability to reach the Valley of Meetings. It is the only land route not terribly treacherous. I can tell by the lack of animals with you that you are on your journey. I will tell you that no animal lives in the Valley...they avoid it like the plague." Makal began to rise higher in the sky. "There are many animals elsewhere in the mountains though...I wish you luck." With that, Lara and Makal flew away, heading towards the mountains.

Jonathan looked down at Cercei. She looked every bit as shocked as he felt. "Who was THAT?" he asked...not really expecting a response.