Title: Walk Back to the Inn
RP Thread Number: 23
When Occured: Between Sessions #15 and #16
Location: The Warrens (Kokand City)
Out of Game Date: Nov 01 – Nov 02, 2019
Participants: Anglerond, Te’Teh, Keyleth
Original Thread: http://silkandspices.freeforums.net/thread/244/walk-back-inn
Previous Thread: Party Crashers at Luke’s Shack (10/26/18 – 11/1/18)
Next Thread: The Room Where Jack Slept (11/05/18 – 11/06/18)
We have an index for sections below, each corresponding to a page on this thread in the forum. This is to allow you to quick click back to near where you might have stopped reading.
Key walks down the street, head down deep in thought. In spite of her evident disregard to the people around her, she shifts out of others way so as not to jostle anyone. She reaches down and unconsciously fiddles with one of the daggers at her hip.
Anglerond moves up smoothly in front of Key, two steps ahead and two to the left. Once his arrival at that spot Key doesn’t have to shift how she moves. He smiles to himself but talks back at her without looking. “You seem agitated, are you ok Key?.”
Te’teh quickly takes advantage of the screening that Anglerond gives and slides in beside Key.“What are we doing boss?”
Key watches through her lashes as Anglerond slides into place. She starts to roll her eyes but stops herself, then shakes her head. She darts a glance at Te’Teh and smiles but it doesn’t reach her eyes. She hiffs out a brearh then starts to speak.
“Im agitated by this whole Arthurian thing. I want to get it all done and over with as soon as possible, but Luke is right, we need to be smart about it. It’s making me hyper sensitive to everything. Up to and incuding the thought that I will never again in my life have a moment to myself and it all for my own safety!” She shakes her head again realizing her anger and attempting to get it back in check.
To Te’Teh she says “I need to rush a letter to the library. At least I can do that right now. I figured you guys could have a drink while I write. Maybe after that we can go check to see how the house is coming. I just need to kerp moving.”
Anglerond seems a bit saddened momentarily for Key’s plight, that disappears though and a smirk pops up on the left side of his face. “You think right Key, you announced your blood, you probably shouldn’t ever be alone again, especially not with Artherien. Once we have in hand you might be able to get some time. You will need to adapt your life to take that into account.”
He looks at her from the corner of his eye, as he smoothly ‘redirects’ others out of Key’s way, “May I say something direct Key?”
Te’teh pats Key reassuringly, and points out a cute boy walking the other direction to her friend.
“You have an advantage though. Reginald hasn’t left the city yet, he can instantly communicate with the library through his book. Now, do you want to deal with Reggie? That is its own question. Although for a gnome he is kind of cute.”
Key makes a noise that says ‘I figured’. Then decides to answer the woman next to her first. “I’ll do it. It will take my mind off of all this.” She waves a hand encompassing everything she’s dealing with. She smirks at Te’Teh.
“That’s all you sister. As long as you keep him from writing I won’t complain.”
She looks ahead of her to Anglerond. “Please do, but could you have to walk next to me.” She transfers her smirk to the man ahead of her.
Anglerond falls back so he is walking beside Key, on her left still acting as a shield. “I have helped defend nobles for more than four hundred years. In that time I have found everyone needs to find a way to relax, to blow off steam.”
He seems to be watching her from the corner of his eye.
Te’teh raises an eyebrow, and a smirk fades across her face before her attention fully falls on Key. “You could use a break, it has been a rough several months.”
Both eyebrows raise and she looks from one to the other. “I suppose you both have suggestions?” She seems to entertain the idea for a moment then shakes it off. Her pace picks up as she regains her resolve.
“There are things to do. I’ll take a few extra hours of meditation tonight and be fine by tomorrow.” She’s quiet for a moment then asks.
“Anglerond, do you have an issue with Rabbit?”
Te’teh’s smirk erupts in to a huge smile. “Seriously you need to go blow steam off.” She then turns and watches for Anglerond for his answer.
Anglerond listens to his queen, turning to watch her fully and coming to a full stop. As he hears her words, a small tightening at his jaw as he takes a much longer time then normal to answer. His answer seems weighted and measured and something that a guard would say to their ruler. “Do I have an issue with Rabbit?…”
He pauses slightly again, then clearly, calmly and with no emotion says, “No.”
Key rolls her eyes heavenward. She stops walking and turns to the tiefling first. “Not all of us use sex to ‘Blow off steam’ I prefer a good fight personally. If it makes you feel better I’ll go pock one.” She winks then turns to Anglerond.
“My bullshit detector just exploded. Let’s pretend for a moment that Im not a queen. What about Rabbit gives you cause for concern?”
Anglerond watches Key, she can see his brain processing the best way to approach this subject. “First, I want you to know I do not doubt why you are loyal to Rabbit. I am not trying to step into that. I even believe she might care as much as she shows.”
He pauses again, looks back towards the way they came from before continuing, “I have fought drow for over two hundred years. I admit I hold biases, and it does gladden me that you don’t have them. However, something about this situation sits wrong with me. I promise when I realize what I am missing I will tell you. I won’t keep that from you at all.”
Key’s features go icey for a moment but when she realizes Te’Teh is joking they soften. “Poor choice of words. At the monastery we spar on a regular basis to keep our skills sharp. That’s what I need, a sparing match, something to help bleed of this excess negative energy. I dont drink or do drugs. The whole ‘my body is a temple thing’.” She chuckles then starts tonwalk again assuming the others will follow. She soeaks next to Anglerond.
“Okay, thank you for your honesty. She has declared herself -my- handmaiden. I acknowledge that I don’t understand fully what that means, but I don’t take it lightly. She is not a danger to me or anyone else in our party. Unless they show themselves to be a threat to us.” She pauses.
“Did you see what she did in the gate house at Arborlon?”
Te’teh still seems amused “You really need another hobby, seriously your people are going to think you are not relatable.”
Te’teh then hesitates, clamps her mouth shut when Key mentions the gate house, the ‘oh shit’ look flashes across her face.
Anglerond listens to his queen, patience on his face disappears when she mentions the gatehouse. His demeanor seems to freeze, full attention on her. “What exactly did she have to do with the gatehouse situation?.”
She looks around and pulls him into a quiet corner where she can talk in low tones so they aren’t over heard. She steps up close to him, her lips next to his ear.
“Nestrim wanted to stop an alliance against me between some of the houses in Arborlon and the Drow. Without any of our knowledge he convinced Rabbit to well, you saw it. I think she killed the drow too. Nesterim wanted to send them a message. When I found out I was furious. I assure you that that is the last time that anything like that is done in my name.”
She leans back, her face filled with the resolve she is feeling.
Te’teh’s face is extremely pale for her darker complexion as if she is watching something slide out of control, “You know she didn’t like doing it, she had nightmares, she even now can’t sleep by herself after doing it.”
Anglerond becomes calm and placid, like a lake in winter. His eyes cold, calculating, watching everything Key says, and does physically. “So Rabbit killed those elven noble house members, their guards and everyone present, strung them up like chickens and sacrificed them to Lolth? She then impaled the drow in a ritualistic manner to something else?”
His eyes dark, unreadable, “It wasn’t done in your name fortunately, none of it leads back to you. Not a single shred of evidence my rangers searched for came up with one iota. Not a single house member for any house has voiced an idea that it was done for your benefit.”
He looks at her again, focusing his attention, “You had absolutely no knowledge of this before it happened?”
Key looks to Te’Teh then back to Anglerond. Her spine straightens and she adopts a regal barring. “Absolutely none. And Te’Teh is right. Rabbit came home after the fact ravaged emotionally. She left the underdark for a reason. Alluvia had nightmares about it as well. I had a discussion with Nesterim and this will never happen again. The only reason why I mentioned it at all was to point out that those are the lengths she will go to to protect her family, and we are her family. She was a tool of Nesterim’s will, nothing more. Nestrim has been dealt with so nothing more need be done. I don’t think I have to tell you that word of this can’t go any further.”
She pauses for a moment thinking. “Are you getting regular reports from the Rangers at Arborlon?”
Te’teh almost seems to crumple in on herself defeated. She stands there waiting for Anglerond’s response, bracing herself.
Anglerond seems relieved to hear the words that Key had nothing to do with it and knew nothing about it. Some of the chill has left his eyes when he gives Key a small nod.. “I am relieved my queen to hear this part, even if the situation itself does sadden me.
He looks off towards the north unconsciously , “I will need to take care of some things, can I meet you at the tavern later?”
Key turns to the wall and swears. She pulls her elbow back and strikes the wall just hard enough to draw a small amount of blood across her nuckles. She turns back to face Anglerond, defeated. “No. I need you to promise me that if anyone pays for what happened that day its me. They may not have done it in my name, but make no mistake, it was done -for me-. Everyone makes mistakes, hell Im in the middle of a wapper. But you can’t do anything more terrible than what the parties involved are already doing to themselves. Nestrim, I know now did what he did out of inexperience. He’s beating himself up, he is filled with remorse. I told you what I did out of the same inexperience.” She drops to her knees, head bowed.
“Please, don’t make the rest of my family pay for the mistakes of one young, inexperienced, inconsequential queen.”
Te’teh’s eyes grow cold, her hands on her hips, brushing her shortsword, she can be heard softly murmuring “Luke, Jack, you need to get here right now.”
Te’teh has the resigned look that she knows she will die, but she steps up beside Key, ready to defend her friend.
Anglerond is confused at first by Key’s response. He seemed to want to stop her from hitting the wall, but just winces. Astonished as she drops to her knees he immediately leans down, cups his hands under her arms and lifts her up. “Keyleth, you did absolutely nothing wrong. This is not on you. You will not pay for anything.
Key holds up a hand to Te’Teh to stay her. Key looks at Anglerond. Her eyes full of tears. “I need to know what your going to do. I can’t let you hurt my family for a mistake. Please, Im begging you, let us work this out between the two of us. Whatever blood is shed from this point forward is on my hands. I have to insist on paying whatever price you and the rangers insist on exacting.”
Te’teh allows Key to intercede, but shifts her weight, watching and waiting.
Anglerond runs his fingers under Key’s eyes, wiping tears. His age evident in his tired eyes and the set of his jaw. “You owe me no price, my queen. You have done nothing wrong, and the rangers are not someone to punish the innocent, and you are the innocent in this. I highly doubt you would have ever allowed this. You will owe me no price anyways as it will not be my decision to make on guilt, innocence or punishment.”
He sighs deeply, “I am still a sworn ranger, I gave my oath to the tree of life that I would follow the code until a different purpose came to me and I forsook them. This was not a mistake. I don’t doubt overall it wasn’t something that worked out in favor of anything you, Nesterin or Rabbit wanted, but the act was horrific, and not something to be written off as a mistake. I will need to report it to the elders.”
He looks over at Te’Teh, nods to her and turns back to Keyleth, “You also misunderstand how justice works in Arborlon. Rangers are not subject to the desire of any household, that includes the Queen. You cannot insist on taking a punishment that is to be meted out to another. You won’t be allowed to interfere with the results by my order. This is what keeps our houses from becoming like the Drow. All houses, even the ones that work against the light have agreed to abide by this, an impartial force to settle disputes and crimes that would upset our people.”
He touches her face one more time, “I will do nothing until a decision is made. I suspect it will become an ugly public affair and I will need to return to Arborlon. But I promise nothing will be done by me about the decision until I inform both you and Rabbit personally.”