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LEAVE THIS BLUE NEIGHBORHOOD - Cole & Jeremiah

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 we are the next in line, [P] Erik
Aoife Caomhánach
 Posted: Mar 2 2018, 12:57 PM
Quote

Ice
Age: 28
application
tracker
Group Icon
Historian
Psychometry

Posts: 24
OOC: Olly


• these hummingbirds are not made for winter •

In the warm candlelight of Sirenia’s temple, Aoife sat alone. She had arrived with the morning worshippers and practiced the dawn’s rituals with them, but as they streamed out into the crisp, winter air, she remained behind. The silence that filled the tall, cavernous room was far more welcome than the chatter of the clergy, and the young woman breathed deeply, calmly into the silence. She shifted her dainty hands from her sides into a graceful fold atop her lap, smoothing the satin fabric of her dress as she did so, and settled her icy eyes onto the stone-carved monument before her: the great, upward turned palm of Hentu, and the seven-pointed star of Zematri poised just above. Two brothers, her gods, her guidance.

The sea of lit candles spread over the alter and down the single step to the temple floor flickered softly in the quietude, and Aoife stilled herself with them. Her worshipping was complete, but she was here for a different reason. A man by the name of Erik Lothar was to meet her here. Erik Lothar, her father had explained to her, was a fine warrior from another powerful family of the once unbreakable Ice Tribe, and he had seen it fit that they should marry. Aoife, ever the pragmatic and obedient daughter, accepted the news with poise and grace, but in her fragile chest her heart trilled with the implications of being wed.

Despite any reservations she might have on being tethered to a stranger, marriage was her duty. She did not fear fulfilling the promises bestowed upon her the minute she’d been born, and she yearned for the step forward in life that she had always been taught was expected of her. The internal conflict was a muted one, entirely hidden on her dignified face, but when the sound of footsteps climbing the stairs to the Temple’s great doors echoed in the great hall, she found herself tensing and holding her breath anyway.

• still i don't mind the snow, and the cold could make them strong •

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Erik Lothar
 Posted: Mar 2 2018, 06:14 PM
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Ice
Age: 32
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Warrior
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Posts: 9
OOC: Spotty


The encroaching daylight brought forth a mix of questions and uncertainty with it. He knew this day would come, one way or another. It was an unavoidable path. Who he was didn't allow for such a milestone to be ignored.

In general, he had little qualms with the way this union had manifested itself. It was simply the way things were done, he knew nothing else. The life of domesticity wasn't a bad one, though he was wise enough to recognize it wouldn't be as much of a change for him compared to his female counterpart. Torn from your home and family to be herded into a stranger's hearth and shouldered with unfamiliar responsibilities; he could see why his sister had been filled with quiet trepidation before her own marriage - even if she refused to admit it to anyone.

He knew little about the woman he was to take to wife. He'd been told she was a pious woman from the nobility of Onryx. Which, explained his destination he supposed. Ascending the stairs to the temple, he entered quietly, or as muted as the large interior allowed anyway. The space was rather empty in the wake of the dawn rite, but he was able to pick out a form amongst the scene. Approaching the lone figure, a rich baritone filled the large space. “I hope I am not disturbing you.” Considering her sole presence here, he could only presume this was the mysterious Aoife Caomhánach.

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Aoife Caomhánach
 Posted: Mar 3 2018, 04:15 PM
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Ice
Age: 28
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Historian
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Posts: 24
OOC: Olly


• these hummingbirds are not made for winter •

The sound of approaching footfalls came to an end, and Aoife subconsciously sat a little straighter in the pew. Every other aspect of her seemed frozen in place and entirely unaware that an individual had approached her. When a rich, deep voice finally spoke up, the young woman’s rigidity gave way only in the turn of her head at first, and the weight of that moment was not lost on her – the deliberate action that brought her face to face with the man whom she was expected to share a bed and future with. The anxiety that still trilled beneath the surface remained very much buried, the dignified sweep of her eyes over him giving away no notion that she thought particularly anything on this entire matter.

He was handsome and sturdily built, that much she could gather by an initial overview, but Aoife was not terribly concerned with those characteristics. Serenely, she tipped forward in her seat and stood up, her hands falling down to her sides as she did so. “Not at all, sir.” she answered, her voice as rich as it was fragile, built on years of etiquette training to shape her into a polite little thing when she ought to be. Aoife bowed her head as a sign of respect before raising her icy eyes to level onto his. As demure as she behaved, it was evident in her posture and the confidence in her gaze that she was not quite the glass flower she painted herself to be. “You are Erik Lothar, I presume?” She followed the question with a small courtesy. “Aoife Caomhánach, if it pleases you.”

• still i don't mind the snow, and the cold could make them strong •

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Erik Lothar
 Posted: Mar 4 2018, 12:57 PM
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Ice
Age: 32
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Posts: 9
OOC: Spotty


It was pleasing to hear that he had not been intruding on her worship, though all that appeared outwardly was the small ghosting of a grin to indicate that was his desired response. As she rose to meet his gaze, her inspection of him was mirriored as he took in her ethereal appearance. It was difficult not to appear looming due to their disparity in height. His cold visage and sharp attention could be daunting to those not of ice, but thankfully he was in like minded company, as even in his shadow the young woman displayed dignity and confidence no matter her possibly differing opinion. Youth was evident on her features, but her mannerisms and formality - seemingly unsullied by the timidity youth often brought with it - spoke to someone who was closer in age than originally inferred upon first glance. That was good. He wasn’t sure how he would feel being betrothed to a budding youth.

"Your presumptions would be correct,” he nodded in turn at her introduction, analyzing her mannerisms - very traditional indeed. In some ways she made him feel barbarous. But was that not a woman’s job; to smooth the jagged edges of man? And man’s job to protect them from anything that might corrupt such a pure mind and character.

Reminded of their general isolation, he lifted his gaze from her’s to span the entirety of the space around them before returning. "You have arrived here without escort?” It was mostly a stated observation, but the slightest of inflections at its conclusion bred the air of a curiosity. If she had arrived with one they were either terrible or terribly excellent at their job; for with no one in sight they were either absent, or relied on magicks to remain hidden. He rather hoped it was the latter, for now was a dangerous time for a lone woman. Even if, in theory, it spoke to the volumes of her family’s trust in his integrity, he felt nigh uncomfortable with the prospect of her remaining unguarded from any stranger that decided to commandeer his identity for nefarious purposes.


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Aoife Caomhánach
 Posted: Mar 4 2018, 09:22 PM
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Ice
Age: 28
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Historian
Psychometry

Posts: 24
OOC: Olly


• these hummingbirds are not made for winter •

In just a few words, what had been almost three decades of expectation and waiting seemingly came to a close. This was indeed Erik Lothar, the man who would become her husband, unless Aoife discovered some unforgivable secret hidden behind courtesy and steel. She refrained from making judgments yet, but her gaze was clearly astute and analytical. They had not been betrothed to one another for the purpose of falling in love – that idea was a ridiculous and childish one created by the softer and weaker hearts of Eudocia. What Aoife wanted to determine was his capability of being a strong and proper husband, carrying with him the qualities of a devout and honorable man whose household would only increase her own standing amongst their people.

She took a small step forward, closing the gap between them, and their difference in height became all the more apparent. Her chin lifted, her eyes with it, and then her head cocked toward the entrance to the temple when he questioned the terms of her arrival. “My elder brother brought me here. He is just outside.” He had promised to remain nearby until her safe delivery into Erik’s already trusted hands, and though she could not see him where she stood, she was certain he could see her.

Several individuals began to filter back into the temple. They came alone, each venturing to different areas of the great hall, and Aoife’s stoic gaze flitted after each one before centering on the man in front of her again. “Shall we go for a walk? I do not wish to disrupt the prayers of patrons.” Aoife took another small step forward, but did not push her way past him into the main aisle. Instead, she halted again after the fluttering gesture, waiting for Erik to take the lead and guide them both physically and verbally through this new and joint trial they faced together.

• still i don't mind the snow, and the cold could make them strong •
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Erik Lothar
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 04:23 PM
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Ice
Age: 32
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Posts: 9
OOC: Spotty


He nodded curtly at the affirmation that she was not in fact alone; happy to be corrected. It might have seemed foreign or trivial to others, but it was a custom deeply ingrained into Ice Tribe belief. Any woman born into gentry, let alone a woman of noble birth such as the woman before him, did not wander unescorted. It was as much of a display of status as it was for their own protection. Arguably, the opinion on why that was the case varied from man to man. Though his own reasoning wasn’t, necessarily, rooted in the belief that women were to be kept as completely helpless creatures who couldn’t defend themselves, but in the idea that they shouldn’t have to resort to such brutish affairs. Seeing that the world, now more than ever, was hardly a fair place, that left it to him and his brethren to secure the safety of others.

”As you wish.” The proposal was agreeable enough. Motioning for her to walk ahead, he fell seamlessly into stride. Pulling back the heavy door of the temple, he waited for Aoife and a pair of approaching worshipers pass the threshold before rejoining his most important company.

In comparison, it was easy to spot the woman's kin. The Nordic-looking man held a vague familiarity that Erik could only presume came from the faint recognition of most of Aver's remaining military. They were scattered and wounded now, many of their leaders either fallen or still missing in action. But for such a structured kingdom to remain in pieces was an impractical assumption. Those of ice wouldn't allow it, their water cousins would either have to conform or defect. Even if he had to take the mantle himself, he'd bring discipline to their order, regaining what they lost slowly but surely, only after securing their current position as best they could.

Turning to whom context and appearance foreshadowed as her brother, he spoke. ”We will walk.” It was the other man's prerogative when it came to deciding what free distance he might allow the pair. Privacy mattered not as much as his promised wife's comfort. As a brother to his own sisters, he wouldn't let them out of sight in the company of a stranger - no matter whom he claimed to be - and would not fault the fair-haired man for the same should he follow.

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Aoife Caomhánach
 Posted: Mar 19 2018, 08:17 AM
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Ice
Age: 28
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Historian
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Posts: 24
OOC: Olly


• these hummingbirds are not made for winter •

As custom over personal comfort took over, Aoife found it easier to ignore the incessant little trill of her uncertain mind. Change was always an uncomfortable thing, especially for her people and Tribe who sought to keep their world as rigid and stagnant as possible. Some change was inevitable, but bathing it in the context of life’s natural order and the countless hours of private tutoring on etiquette and womanhood helped Aoife to respond to this novel situation with muscle memory while her mind lagged behind.

She led for only a few paces and then paused, waiting for Erik to discuss what he willed with her brother Desmond. When he returned to her side, Aoife steered them toward the main cobbled road that wove through the densest, interior part of the remaining city. Silence befell her for a time, but not out of nervousness or shyness. Rather, she listened carefully for the familiar steps of her elder brother to echo behind them, not wanting to be rude by craning her neck over her shoulder in search of his protection.

As soon as she could be sure by sound alone that he still followed, the infinitesimal relaxation rippled over her wraithlike frame. Her hands slipped into the folds of skirt fabric at her sides to shield them from the frigid winds – a habit more than a necessity – and she eyed Erik from her periphery. “So…” she began, her voice tranquil but cautious, neither wanting to speak out of turn nor continue the rest of their walk in utter silence, “Should we begin the process of getting to know each other?” What would be shared on this day would most likely not deviate from what was already common knowledge, but they needed to begin somewhere. If Aoife was to be a good and proper wife, she would need to understand her future husband first.

• still i don't mind the snow, and the cold could make them strong •
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Erik Lothar
 Posted: Mar 23 2018, 04:48 AM
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Ice
Age: 32
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Warrior
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Posts: 9
OOC: Spotty


The trio soon fell into a comfortable rhythm as they wove through their battered city. Years of honing instinct had him pick out the sound of Desmond's footfalls, amongst the other ambient noise, perhaps a bit faster than the woman to his left. But eventually she seemed to ease enough after confirming the same through her own senses - even if such an uncertainty was nigh invisible in its presence and departure. Erik had always been an astute individual. As trained as they might be, the ice wolves were still human, and by nature of that: imperfect. He was not yet privy to the unvarnished version of the Caomhánach woman, but each interaction they held built the baseline of what he perceived as her standard.

Feminine vocals tested the silence between them, and his attention drifted loosely towards the sound of her voice before returning to the path ahead. “I suppose that would be a fitting topic, yes.” he mused aloud. He did wish to know the creature he was to be tethered with the rest of his days. Who she was, what she brought to their partnership and more importantly what made her happy. They may not be marrying for the same reason the common folk did, but that was no excuse to make it a miserable union.

“What would you know of me?” What she had already been told, he couldn't be certain, but he decided to let her lead her own line of questioning, even if others might see curiosity as ‘unladylike’.


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Aoife Caomhánach
 Posted: Mar 28 2018, 11:18 AM
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Ice
Age: 28
application
tracker
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Historian
Psychometry

Posts: 24
OOC: Olly


• these hummingbirds are not made for winter •

As they fell in step with each other, Aoife felt a sense of familiarity wash over her. Though this man was a stranger and an enormous mystery in which she was tasked with unveiling, there was a certain familial feel to their walking side-by-side. In their current situation, they were not yet spouses nor friends, but walking in the presence of this warrior, whoever he was, brought about the same comfort as though she were strolling through the streets of Sirenia with only Desmond. He carried himself with easy grace and pose, close yet far enough that their arms did not touch, and it was clear he was content to follow her lead even when it was his steps she was following.

When given the opportunity to steer the conversation, Aoife took it with silent approval. One incredibly important requirement for gaining her respect was to respect her in turn, and at least now in their small handful of minutes together, it appeared Erik was willing to give her such. “I know you aided in Aver’s efforts in the war.” she began by airing what information she already held, her voice quiet and introspective, “My brother mentioned fighting alongside you, but I fear I know little else other than the general prestige of the Lothar name.” Her fingers toyed with the fabric of her skirts, a subtle way of diffusing tension, and her icy eyes flicked up and to the side. “Perhaps begin by telling me a synopsis of your family? Of where you are from?” There were more important questions that Aoife wanted the answers to, but diving straight into the gritty details of their personalities would have been rude and prying. Instead, she chose to gently scrape the surface of this glacier, patiently revealing one small layer at a time.

• still i don't mind the snow, and the cold could make them strong •
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Erik Lothar
 Posted: Mar 30 2018, 10:09 AM
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Ice
Age: 32
application
tracker
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Warrior
Force-Field Manipulation

Posts: 9
OOC: Spotty


He was thankful the woman beside him held no discernable hesitation in response to his deferment of conversational control. That action alone, or presence of inaction, told him she was confident in herself, perhaps only restricted by social custom - especially in the public eye. “That I did.” His already impeccable posture only solidified by the small swell of pride that recognition brought. He was bred to be a warrior. The expectation of him to take up arms came secondary to his want to to. It was a part of his very core and nothing could have dissuaded him from his choice.

His previous thought of familiarity with the man trailing behind them was confirmed by Aoife's comment and he nodded slightly in agreement. “And your brother is a commendable warrior.” He didn't turn to look at the subject of his well deserved praise but if Desmond was paying as much attention that he thought he was to their conversation, he would notice. While the two didn't know each other well enough to be called friends, there was a certain camaraderie that was bred from the two of them being career military men with sisters they seemed to care for very much, one that left him with a fair speculation as to the man's potential mindset at the moment.

Admittedly there was a small flicker of surprise that had creeped its way to visibility at her query into his own family, rather than relying solely on the weight of his name and his forefathers’. It was a rare occurrence, and whether it had come from a place of genuine curiosity or actual care mattered not. “Well, my father too is a warrior and my mother a scholar...She is from Onyrx as well, actually.” He hadn't considered his mother's origins much over the years, for he hadn't needed to. But perhaps they might get along with such a commonality. And perhaps he might pick his mother's brain as to what things might make her feel more at home. For, while making the pilgrimage every year had him privy to the surface, there was something to be said about living there for nineteen years.


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