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Of the Months
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Anmarisa Pelagios

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LEAVE THIS BLUE NEIGHBORHOOD - Cole & Jeremiah

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 ships in the night [Alexander], [The Invasion of Aver]
Alcyone Calaeno
 Posted: Feb 13 2018, 08:53 AM
Quote

Earth & Ice
Age: 35
application
tracker
Group Icon
Trader
Lycanthropy

Posts: 106
OOC: Olly


• AND IF IT ALL GOES CRASHING INTO THE SEA •

Two thick tendrils of smoke coiled upward into the sky.

From Riverrock, they faced due west and south, and their visibility from such a distance spoke volumes. The first of the residents to the quiet trading village stood upon the cobblestone streets and murmured worriedly to each other, but then the families who still clung to their Averian ties noticed the distant fires, and tensions in the streets grew tenfold. “It’s really happening? I knew we shouldn’t have trusted the word of an ambassador!” the voice of an unfamiliar woman rang out at a shrill pitch and roused Alcyone from the interior of her humble cottage. She had used every coin she’d ever saved for its purchase, and the sense of stability its protective walls brought her made her slow to realize exactly what had occurred.

When dark eyes found the pillars of destruction, panic flooded her heart. Judging by their locations, it was the bustling port-towns of Dessus and Plenia’s Port that had both been hit. That cannot be right, she had thought to herself and, in her alarm, turned a full circle where she stood as if she were lost. Being privy to undisclosed military plans had its perks, but in this moment she was only informed enough to know that something must have gone terribly awry. Alexander Pelagios and his navy were supposed to sail upon Vestius. She had given him information on the softest spots along the coast in which to strike the Ombrian capital. How, and who, had gotten a lead on the attack and come so swiftly to the shores of Aver in retaliation?

Alcyone’s heart wept for those port-town families, and tears of fear and sadness welled in her eyes, but action drove her back into her cottage in a flurry, and haphazardly she stuffed a day’s worth of supplies into a haggard leather rucksack. She would cry for the whole of Aver for their loss until the end of her days, but right now there was one pivotal soul in all of this that she needed to ensure was safe.

The roads to Sirenia were pandemonium. The heaviest stream of it flowed out of the Spine’s foothills and toward Riverrock under the blind hope that technically neutral territory would protect them. Alcyone struggled against the current, doing what she could to gather her skirts and wade her way through without blockading the families who tried to stick together.

When she finally reached the streets of Sirenia, the residents there fared no better. Despite those looming pillars of smoke still being distant, something had happened to the Averian capital. In the chaos of the marketplace it was impossible to tell if the city had been struck by land units, or if panicked city-goers were simply trying to get out of Sirenia’s walls before that happened. Whatever the case, Alycone made a beeline through the crowd and struggled her way against the flow of the crowd once more to the one house in the whole of the city she knew. She had no way of knowing if Alexander Pelagios would be home given the state of his kingdom, but with nowhere else in mind to go, desperation took her there anyway. Perhaps she’d be lucky and find him in the delicate timeframe of returning from Ombra and setting out once again to clean the mess whoever had done this had made.

Whatever the case, when Alcyone scrambled up the small set of stairs to the front door, she paused only for a second to gather her bearings and breath, adrenalin enhancing her courage, and then both tentatively and with a sense of urgency edged the door to the military head’s home open. “Alex?” she called into the dimness and peered inside. “Alex, are you here? Are you okay? she had no way of knowing if there were ears to hear the fright in her voice, and with one hand still on the door she slipped inside the entranceway. Dread already filled her when she crossed that threshold with the realization that Alexander either would not be here at all, or if he was he might not receive her kindly.

But she had to try.

• IF IT'S JUST YOU AND ME TRYING TO FIND THE LIGHT •
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Alexander Pelagios
 Posted: Mar 1 2018, 07:44 PM
Quote

Water
Age: 42
application
tracker
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Military Head
Feral Mind

Posts: 85
OOC: Nith


• WE ARE THE CHILDREN, THE LAST GENERATION •

It had taken far less time than he had anticipated.

Alexander roused from his bed to the loud sounds of the people below him, his people, squabbling and arguing amongst themselves in the late morning hours. They had docked yesterday after an only somewhat successful attack on Ombra. They'd left the walls and Vestius damaged, but had made plenty of their own sacrifices as well. He had reeled his troops back in from Sunils black shores, and only mustered his way back to Aver to restock and prepare.

He had not been anticipating whatever was happening so quickly. From out his window he could see the two pillars of smoke rising, and dread set in. What had he done? There was no time for thought as he flung himself across his room to hurriedly throw on clothing, ignoring the gashes across his chest, arms, neck and face that still needed to be cleaned. His face was more sunken in, darker and older even, his brow set low over two glowing blue orbs that would drown the continent of Eudocia if he had any say in the matter. His lips in a tight grimace, he heard the voice calling him from below and hastened to stumble down the stairs to her.

"What is happening?!" he snapped immediately, throwing open his door to watch the people flooding the streets, hurrying out of Sirenia, away from the smoke that had risen. His jaw clenched tight as he spun on Alcyone, not even bothering to close the door, letting the peoples cries fill his home, "If I find you had something to do with this, so help me," his voice was tense, a snarl on the edge of snapping as he stepped toward her. Rogues, an Ombrian rogue at that, he reminded himself; she had gotten to close. Too friendly. She knew too much and if she betrayed him, Alexander would tear her limb from limb until she begged for death. This, above all else, he knew was true.

"Sir," A young scout stood in the doorway, looking between the two of them before settling on Alexander as he stepped away from Alcyone. His timing could not have been better, lest Alexander berate her instead of dealing with their current situation, "Dessus and Plenias Port, Sir, they're under attack; they're making their way through. Some are already in Sirenia," The boy was nearly out of breath as he spoke, and swallowed hard when Alexander approached him, "Who?!" "We don't know sir, but it looks like Caldo."

Alexander stopped, as still and as quiet as a statue as he turned blue eyes of murder towards the boy. The scouts face paled, stepping back despite Alexander remaining still and only lifting his head, "Caldo," he murmured. Then, roused back to life, standing tall as he barked "I want the ships in the bay out to sea as soon as possible. They'll be coming from the south side, bring ours north up the coast. We can surround them on the back and trap them. Get the ships out of there, we can't afford to lose them." Aver would be nothing without its navy. Ports and cities could be rebuilt, but to lose their fleet would be the kiss of death. "I want our troops mobilized and on the shores, push them back, keep them from reaching Sirenia. Get the people out. Send me the captains. I need Geralt, Desmund and Jax to me, immediately. Can you handle all of that, boy?" The scout nodded and dashed from his threshhold, and Alexander strode to close the door behind him.

"What do you know, Alcyone?" He muttered to her as he pushed back the old bags filled with clothing and food from his table. They left wet streaks of sea and sand across the wood, but he paid it no mind as he unrolled the map of Eudocia and set it out. He drew his fingers across its page and muttered to himself as he waited for Alcyone to answer him with whatever trinkets of knowledge she could share.

• WE ARE THE ONES THEY LEFT BEHIND •
Image by Nith

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Alcyone Calaeno
 Posted: Mar 11 2018, 04:31 PM
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Earth & Ice
Age: 35
application
tracker
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Trader
Lycanthropy

Posts: 106
OOC: Olly


• AND IF IT ALL GOES CRASHING INTO THE SEA •

Alcyone heard Alexander before she saw him. Hurried footsteps thudded across the wood planks above her head, and suddenly the furious Averian man was descending upon her with wrath in his eyes. Though she had had a moment to prepare for such a reception, Alycone still shrank away from him the moment his angry words lashed out at her. Her tall, elegant frame crumpled like paper, slipping out of the way and against the wall so he could storm past her and fling the door open to the chaos outside. “An attack – ” She managed to say, her voice high and clearly frightened until it cut off all together when he turned upon her. Though Alexander had never struck her in the past, that possibility still hung in the air and in the manner of which he spoke to her. Involuntarily, she braced herself for that impact and winced until he came to a stop just before her, attacking her with words but not fists.

Distrust was evident in Alexander’s eyes now, but Alcyone could do nothing other than stare back at him, her dark irises wide and confused. “I swear I had nothing to do with this,” There was conviction there, alongside the distress, but before she could defend herself further, another person was at the door. A young scout, also clearly shaken by the pillars of smoke in the distance, looked back and forth between Alexander and herself positioned in an intense scene before him. Alcyone let out a breath of relief from between her lips when Alexander finally stepped away from her, a moment’s reprieve from his rage. She could do nothing else but watch their exchange, her hands knotted and twisting together in a futile attempt to diffuse the anxiety roiling inside of herself.

Caldo. So it was not Ombra that had attacked Aver’s ports? Her dark eyes continued to dance back and forth between military head and scout, silently attempting to connect the dots of events herself, and then she paled again when the door closed behind the young man after he vanished.

At the very least, Alexander’s rage seemed to channel into a different route, perhaps no longer suspecting foul play on her part now that Ombra was not the culprit. From her place cowered against the wall, Alcyone watched him walk over to the table and pushed the sacks aside to spread out a map across the wood. It took her a moment to recover from the paralysis of fear, but the young woman finally unraveled herself from her curled position and timidly ventured closer to the haggard warrior and his map.

“I… I know very little.” She still had not found her voice entirely, her tone quiet and wavering as she neared him. Alycone wanted to reach out and place a palm on his back, to offer him words of consolation, to see to the wounds that she could see along with the many more she undoubtfully could not. She wanted him to trust her, so desperately, but she had nothing else to give to make that happen other than her time and patience. “I have no idea why Caldo would turn against you… but it must be them. Ombra was completely unaware of your ambush. They would not have had the ability to react so quickly…” Alcyone would never be a military woman, but her proximity to Alexander had taught her much about war tactics and timing. She had known enough of his plans and alliances, of those he trusted and the many more he didn’t.

Alcyone had reached the table next to Alexander, and slowly, so very timidly, she reached out and placed a palm hesitantly overtop the back of his hand. Her fingers curled very slightly, only the whisper of a grip to ground him with her support. “How can I help you, Alex?”

• IF IT'S JUST YOU AND ME TRYING TO FIND THE LIGHT •
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Alexander Pelagios
 Posted: Mar 19 2018, 04:57 PM
Quote

Water
Age: 42
application
tracker
Group Icon
Military Head
Feral Mind

Posts: 85
OOC: Nith


He could feel the fibers of his being sizzle and crackle underneath his skin. He could feel the wounds pulsate and grow warm with small infections. His hands, resting squarely on the table he leaned and murmured over, even showed signs of quakiness on the ancient oak. His attack had been planned for weeks with Alinari, with Alcyone by his side feeding him information about the blackened island and where their walls were weakest. Where he could strike that would hurt the most. Valuable information he’d struggled to get before, and yet she’d waltzed in with stars in her eyes, petty gifts and eager words to give him. He did not apologize as she recoiled from the wall, nor looked at her as she approached with a meek voice, still recovering from his beratement. A younger Alexander would have had a sense of guilt, at least a thread of it to offer her, but this was war. War he had birthed, at the very hopes of staving off their enemies and keeping Sirenia whole. And if they came to destroy the city, then at least he had not gone down quietly.

Weeks of planning, and then sailing, fighting, and sailing back had left him sharper than usual. His secondary had always found a home in war, and he could still feel that beast inside him roiling and preying on the opportune moment to unleash again. He could barely contain it these days, and as much as it ought to worry him, he found little time to reconcile with himself. Her hand, so warm and soft against the back of his, steadied him and quelled the shakes and twitches. He welcomed her grip, however soft and timid, and though he could not offer her an apology for how he treated her, now, in the past, and undoubtedly in the future, his calloused thumb gently swiped across the tops of her fingers and stayed put. In these quiet moments he could receive her, away from the prying eyes and ears of his people who would whisper and conspire.

Alexander looked up from his map, blue eyes seeking hers in a moment of quiet. She was the only one who had ever stuck around and offered her help. Despite all of his words and actions, his rejection and brutality towards even the most innocent of gestures she had given him, Alcyone always circled back. At one point, he remembered, he couldn’t decide if she was obsessed or just daft. Times like now, it didn’t matter. He straightened, not removing his hand from hers as he ran his other through his hair with an unsatisfied sigh, “You’re right. It took us two days to sail down to Vestius, they could not have recoiled this quickly from our attack.” No, he had planned for Vestius to come later, in at least a week or two at most. “Alinari used us — me,” he correctly quickly, “Exhausted our men and ships and knew when we would be back just in time to strike. She got two kingdoms for the price of one; while Ombra is down and licking its wounds, it won’t have time to go after Caldo, giving her a rare moment to strike. She knows where our ships were heading, and how many men we had with us, giving her the opportune moment to strike Aver.” Why, had been the question he’d still been working on. Could they not have continued to agree to disagree, and carried on? Was Caldo looking for conquest, too? His heart said “Of course,” and he realized what a fool he’d been.

His hand had been tightening on hers with anger, feeling that beast howl inside him again, screaming and pounding for Alinari blood. He slipped out of Alcyones grip for her sake. He had not been anticipating fighting Caldo and Ombra simultaneously, and felt stress and anxiety’s sharp metal grip twist his innards. Alexanders middle finger and thumb stroked his forehead in thought, staring at the map, particularly “Sirenia”, printed so elegantly in the scrolls parchment. “We need to evacuate the city.” The words bit. “Our citizens cannot die for my mistakes. Everyone needs to get out, and I need every fighting man to the shores to push them back.” Very little of this could Alcyone help with, but her being here with him gave him a sounding board and kept him grounded. Without her, there was a solid chance Alexander would have driven himself over the edge and tore Sirenia down in his own wake. Again, he looked hold her gaze for the severity of the matter; “If they get in, they’re going to burn everything, Alcyone. Barns, food, houses, horses — people.” A visible shudder ran through him; the feral howling of people dying as fire incinerated them. He had seen too much flesh seared from bone, and the dying screams of his men haunted him.

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Alcyone Calaeno
 Posted: Mar 20 2018, 09:52 PM
Quote

Earth & Ice
Age: 35
application
tracker
Group Icon
Trader
Lycanthropy

Posts: 106
OOC: Olly


• AND IF IT ALL GOES CRASHING INTO THE SEA •

In truth, Alcyone was unsure of what she expected when she reached out to drape her dainty palm over Alexander’s calloused, war-torn hand. Perhaps a recoil, or a growl, or some other form of rejection that had been par for the course thus far between them. Time and time again she had tried, expecting nothing but wanting everything, and time and time again he had refused her attempts to console him, to be a friend, to be someone he could trust. This, the slow motion of his thumb over her fingers into an unassuming hold, was certainly not what she had expected to happen, however. Her eyes fell to that one, singular connection, and an unfathomably warm wave of elation embraced her. Even with the chaos outside, the destruction of Aver’s ports, and the tormented expression written all over Alexander’s haggard face, their hands entwined together was an impossibly powerful symbol of hope that all was not lost.

He was not lost. Not yet.

When crystal clear eyes went searching for the answers in her dark, doe-like gaze, Alycone remained silent. Rather, she listened to him as he spoke, hanging on every sentence and inflection, attempting to digest his stream-of-consciousness puzzling through what must have transpired. Again, her ears hooked on pivotal words that might have meant nothing to Alex, yet everything to her. Us. Our. We. Words that were exclusive to Averians when coming from the Military Head’s tongue, and yet here they were gifted to her. Her. To slip from her shackles as a foul and homeless lycanthrope from Ombra had once seemed an impossible goal, yet here she was now, in the home of a powerful man, being included in the profoundly important conversations in which the entire kingdom of Aver’s fate rested. Again, Alcyone’s heart trilled beneath her ribs, cavorting about in a confused conglomeration of sorrow and fear and euphoria.

Outwardly, she did nothing at first except dip her head in somewhat of a nod, and her fingers curled a fraction tighter around his hand. “Aver has not fallen yet.” she reminded him, quietly, yet Alexander’s mind already seemed miles away, stampeding down a road of rage and action. His hand had tightened around hers to the point of biting into her skin, but Alycone showed no hint of discomfort, choosing instead to remain as his rock for when he eventually resurfaced from the emotional sea he had been swept out into. She was not given that chance, not fully, for he retreated from her hand and the void between them was once more restored.

In the end, he had not supplied her with much in the way of an answer to how she could help him. His responses were on a much larger scale, from evacuation to battling the Caldonians on the open waters, where Alex and his men would undoubtedly have the upper hand. These tasks were not ones that Alcyone could lift from his shoulders, as much as she wished that she could, but when he looked at her again and shuddered with what must have been nightmarish visions given his words, she found her answer herself.

“Alex…” she murmured his name, imploring him to escape his memories and return to this present moment, such as it was. Tentatively, as always, she reached out with her nearer hand and rested it against his upper arm, fingertips curling softly into the fabric of his shirt. “The city is already evacuating. I saw what must have been at least half of Sirenia’s citizens on the road to Riverrock when I came here. Your messenger is gathering your men on the beach at your command.” Alcy applied more pressure to his arm, willing him to break his hovering over the map to turn and face her, and she placed the open palm of her other hand against his chest. “Have you had any of your wounds looked at and tended to? At the very least, let me see to them before you go back out there?” Her dark eyes darkened further, if it were possible, overcast and steeled over with the resignation that she would forever be doomed to watch him storm into immense danger whether from afar or here at his side, with the slight scratch of his callouses still felt against her fingers. If he allowed her to dress his wounds, at least, she could be sure he dove back into the foray with his best foot forward.

• IF IT'S JUST YOU AND ME TRYING TO FIND THE LIGHT •
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