Today is of the Cycle Of The Seventh Moon.
Current Season & Month:  , Year: 543 A.R. (ref)

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Northern Rosewood Depths: The Old Road

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Duilliath
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The Old Road runs nearly directly north to south, with only a little deviation.

For the most part, it once served the villages that were strung along it like beads from the Heathlands south into The Rosewood. 

Calling it a road was generous, generally it is a clearer path and occasionally much overgrown.

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Duilliath
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Duilliath: Building a Mystery

The Sidhe had a light step, even burdened as he was by Baoun and his recovery from the iron-sickness. He stepped out on the green covered stones of the Old Road, and he said, as they walked, “I am pleased beyond words to be free of the Place of the Wandering Dead. My path lies this way again, and I may yet repay Deradith and her spirits for the mishap that damaged their protection.”

Silence reigned for a while and he passed Baoun to Doré to sleep in the saddle, before he spoke again, “They are voices trapped in yearning,” and he could hear them still, but growing fainter.

”Baoun mentioned to me that he felt something uneasy rested in this place… apart from the Wandering Dead. I don’t care for the flavor of the air, either.”

He put his hand on Marigold and touched Doré’s hand softly. “Whence came this path, Duilliath? It is, here and there fitted stone… “ she was as much a stranger as he, though his alienness came from the passage of time, not distance or culture.

When they stood together, the forest seemed wholesome and at peace, but teeming just beyond… there were other things that waited, or padded along on feline feet.

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Absynthe
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 Along the Path Forward

Due to her desire to speak to her Sidhe whilst they walked through this portion of the wood, Doré found it easier to dismount and lead her palfrey. Baoun was happy to settle atop the saddle, whilst Duilliath and walked abreast ahead of horse and moggie. Dappled light filtered through the trees giving her hair strands of deep gold, and some that were almost silver-white. The promise of stone ahead gave her hope they could make swifter progress. However, the paved portions were not of any good length and generally in poor repair. 

Doré took care that she was not touching his healing arm. Instead, she looped her arm through his good one and was grateful for the solid feel of it beneath her fingers. She also felt a connection which gave her senses greater talent when they touched, not to mention other things. Marigold's hooves made muffled sounds over the damper dirt portions, and sharper *clip!* *clop!* on the stone, and she felt better with each stride further away from the streamside where they had just spent the night.

Finally, curiosity won out over manners and she broke the companionable silence between them. "To where do we travel? Do you meet anyone?" She wished very dearly to remain with him and Baoun, but what if he had other plans? 


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Duilliath
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Duilliath In Search of a Heart

Realizing that much of his tale sounded like a campfire story or something told to children, he considered what she asked and what he answered.

”When I left the place of Bones and Fire,  I had certain… lesions… of the spirit. These keep me from the fullness of my power, though I wonder if it will ever be fully restored?”

He continued, “Before the Fall, I could shake the World itself. Since then, I have had precious little need to do so again.”

He twined his fingers in hers, giving her the full measure of the aura that surrounded him, “I would be free of pain, if nothing else.  An ache that gnaws at me like a badly set bone.”

Some distance farther along, he said, “There are few places of power in this worlde. One of them is unusable, most are too far off. One of the most potent is in a magical pool… it’s waters feed the Ahvinn, but at their source… they are quite potent.”

”We are to meet The Lady, who looks after the pool and the strange bloom that lives within it. Before we get there, we must cross the territory of the horsefolk, who live in the Northern Rosewood.  Or they did, in days past.”

For the moment he was quite content, despite the ache in his soul. Walking hand in hand with Doré, he presumed there were worse fates than a mortal life.

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Duilliath
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Hope is Light

The Sidhe smiled absently and looked down at her as they made their way along the stone roadway. “If Deradith could buoy my spirit with a draught, then The Lady will be able to heal my spiritual wounds.”

”After that, since you have done me a good service, I will do one for you. Doré,” he considered, “do not think less of me for saying so, but your presence buoys me… inspires me. I am glad to have you as my Muse.”

 

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Duilliath
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Duilliath - Tunnel Vision

Sometimes a man sees what he wants to see, sometimes Sidhe, for all their Sight, are blind to some possibilities. 

As they walked, ostensibly along  the former roadway, he was focused on the future. Not the ‘Now’.  It was not until he felt the tickle of Magic being used nearby that he had any inkling of a change…

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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                    Musings

"Who would not wish to be a muse and inspire another?" She smiled thinking about her Sidhe's words, then she handed him Marigold's reins. "I see some herbs I need."

She crouched off to the side and harvested multiple different herbs and added them to the basket. Later, she could either dry them or process them so they could made into a paste, cream, or oil. 

Doré spoke softly as they continued, holding court on suggestions for healing both body and soul. She thanked him and took the reins back, their fingers brushing again. She glimpsed a sun growing until they rays shattered into pieces, sparkling on their way down. The golden disk turned silver, becoming a moon. 

"Odd," she remarked to herself. But then again, what was not unusual since she'd met Duilliath?


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Duilliath
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The Trickster

This was good, very good. The Other, He Who Did Not Belong, was focused on something else entirely, while his delectable servant? Companion? Who knew, she had a Human pulse and human foibles.

”Come,” he whispered, “look into the waters…” for along the Ahvinn were pools occasionally between the Old Road and the River.

The Other, weakened, did not really notice through his distraction, but he was not so easy to fool.

There were glittery jewels and piles of silver and gold that could be seen from the corner of her eye…

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Absynthe
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A Wandering Eye

Perhaps Doré was just road-weary. Perhaps 'twas inexperience. Whatever the reason, those colors metallic enchanted her, and she started on her own path, away from the relative safety of the Old Road. Mayhap this would lead her to Absynthe? 


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Duilliath
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The Trickster had many nets, he took great pleasure and care in weaving them: “Come close.”

A Darkling eye slowly opened and the glow and treasure again appeared. “Your heart’s desire…I can show you what you truly seek.”

Absynthe sort of appeared, through the haze, that was what she wanted, wasn’t it?

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Absynthe
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                                           Faux Syn

It looked like Absynthe, and for a moment her heart leapt and she smiled like a flower finding the first ray of morning sun. However, her steps faltered, before stopping altogether as her brows knit. "You are not Syn," she murmured, disappointment rife in her voice.

With a soft sigh, she brushed strands of golden hair out of her face and then rubbed her eyes. Marigold nudged her shoulder and Doré looked for Duilliath. Her Sidhe and the moggie were the only ones she trusted.


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Duilliath
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Tis a Revelation 

The Other, The Sidhe appeared though the dissolving image, ‘What she wanted to See?’ mayhap.

The Sidhe became aware that she was looking at him strangely, but he smiled at her warmly, approaching and placing his hand against her cheek. He leaned in and spoke  to her conspiratorially,  “There is a hazard here, some Trickster Fae… when I have come into my Power again, I will give you a better ward, but…” he spoke a soft word, “you are under my protection. No harm will come to you.” 

 

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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“Curses! Foiled Again!”

 


The Trickster, a nix of small power but great avarice, looked on with disgust: he had had her… until he decided to improvise. 

The Word the Sidhe spoke… it was more than just sound, even with a tiny, infinitesimally small micro spell powering it, the Sidhe had Craft and Art far in excess of his own.

The Other and the almost-prize Golden Vision returned to the steed. Upon its saddle, a cat opened its eyes sleepily.

No, not a cat, more than that! He twirled his water weed mustache menacingly. “One day…”

 

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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Absynthe
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                                                                            Clarity of Gaze

Of course, what he said made sense and she recollected herself with his touch. He spoke reassuring words before she could protest he should not overstrain himself. Her smile returned and her vision cleared to a welcome view of Duilliath. "'Tis difficult to be cross with you for using your strength when you have done so for me."

Doré took his hand and placed a kiss in the palm. She folded his fingers over his palm so he could keep it. "Mayhap that kiss will protect you as well."


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Duilliath
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He had stood, stock still, while she applied her own magic: he did not think she was familiar with Soma and how it worked with sympathetic magery… but she worked a minor miracle all the same.

He was honored beyond words.

Instead of speaking further, he led the little group onward, until they reached a place where the road angled toward the River.  “Unless I am mistaken, this is where the Old Road crosses the Ahvinn. There used to be a fine old stone bri…” he trailed off.  

Clearly time had not been kind to the stonework: the Bridge Across the Ahvinn was only remnants…

 

Duilliath Suilleach Seanake, Fool and the Traveler Who Lost a Kingdom


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