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lost and found
We found him.

I don't know what to say about it; although I've thought a lot about meeting my father, it's like nothing I've ever imagined.

I knew, when my mother told me of my demonic sire, that he would not be someone... good... I knew this and yet I hoped--for what, I'm not sure. I'd hoped, I guess, that he wouldn't be so bad, so evil and depraved as I feared, maybe that he would have been forced into circumstances by fate--even though Fate seems to have no jurisdiction here--and he might be--

I don't know.

And then, for Boudica to immediately fuck him--I don't know how that makes me feel, either.

I don't think it changes the others' opinions of me overmuch; from what I've gleaned about their lives we're all a bit damaged.

My entire self is changed, and how I consider myself is changed. How I look at myself in a pool of still water, and what I see there.

I found a piece of glass, smoky like it had contained fire, in the streets of his city. I've wrapped it in a bit of oilskin I tore from the hem of my cloak and hidden it in the depths of my bag. It traces neat little lines of sensation into the skin of my leg, and I've discovered I can prolong the soothing sting by rubbing salty water into them. I can use a piece of his city, and I am in control.

But I still don't know.
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Friday June 8

We race to the ship on fire and put it out. We race to the other ship and to the shore and learn nothing we race about and Jeinko sees the nearly undetectable Eel. Gastronome or Hector find the bomb he planted on our ship. Jeinko and I chase him. He goes invisible. I can see him, but cannot get close enough to glitterdust. Jeinko sees his wake in the water. Damn his perception is good. We dive into a cave with him. I finally get to glitterdust the Eel, but I blind Jeinko in the process. Crap.

The Eel is throwing incendiary devices that burn!!! Yikes. He offers to not kill us if we let him go. I say, "done." But Jeinko foolishly forgets he is a pirate and thinks he is a hero. Silly bird. He attacks whilst I submit to live to fight another day.

The Eel was hired by someone, but not to kill us. I ask him who hired him and if we can have the Nymph's shawl back. Hey, it doesn't hurt to ask. He replies, "Norgorberger is blessing me this evening." Then he tells me to leave. I will on my initiative, but I cannot because it is not my turn. Earlier he told me to stand aside. Now I am going to die because he was not specific. Stupid ass alchemist. Then Jeinko throws a dagger at him and misses. Yikes! Death is nigh.

Hector and Gastrognome have not yet disabled the bomb they found on our ship. We desperately need a thief. Sigh. I leave the cave. Only 11 hitpoints, down 5 points of constitution and no healing! I know when to say, "uncle."

The Eel ignores Jeinko, packs up his lab and leaves. The bomb goes off on our ship and the crew puts out the fire.
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The Gift
Nothing was going right that morning. An overnight frost had killed the last of Ula’s herb garden. She could kick herself for not getting it all harvested and hung up in the eaves to dry. The twins were crabby and snotty, making every task a chore. Bread wouldn’t rise properly, she hadn’t thought to pre-warm the pans. Winter was setting in too damn fast for her liking, with Leon still not back from the Abyss. She leaned over the counter by the kitchen window and craned her neck to get a better view of the steely sky. Sleet or cold rain coming, it wouldn’t be pleasant, she’d have children at her heels all morning if it was too raw to play outside.

She sighed and glanced around. Never alone but somehow lonely, a dread had settled into her chest. Ula was not one for self-pity, remember she survived a violent underwater imprisonment, but the daily torture of not knowing if Leon was dead, alive, suspended in another existence, gone forever or home tomorrow, made her feel like a pastry shell rolled too thin.

She put two small baking tins on the stepping stool the boys liked to use as a table, noticing that the pans clanged a bit louder than she intended. Then a ball of dough in each tin, “Maka Mama some nice pies.” Her voice was high and reedy, cheerless. She needed to work on getting the damned bread to rise. There were no leftover embers in the oven - that and a pot of water was an old trick to make the bread puff up without hardening. She would have to try to light a small fire with kindling, not too smoky or the dough would taste ashen. Some dry applewood from along the orchard fence might work.

“Boys, we need some wood.” They looked up, startled because they had only just begun their pie creations, but looking for wood was even better. First, a near eternal search for four little shoes for four little feet, and they pushed open the door into the chill air. Ula flattened her palms, checking for rain, and the twins did the same. Satisfied, they shot across the courtyard and onto the lane toward the orchard. It only took a moment for Tor to skin a knee and Tas to shed one of her shoes, but they were too excited by the unexpected outing to demand Ula’s attention. She picked up the shoe and followed behind.

As they approached the orchard, and uncanny feeling came over Ula. What was it? Hope? Contentment? The twins seem affected by it also, holding hands and skipping along together. The air hummed with faint pleasant music. Ula smiled, remembering that she loved to dance.

The boys gathered the applewood, and instead of the usual swordfight with sticks, they each took one end of the bundle and began to carry it back to the Keep together.

That was when they saw it. The loveliest of creatures. I won’t be able to describe it well, but believe me it was the purest of beautiful things. Tall, with four alabaster hooves, a shimmering white coat, large turquoise eyes, and a delicate ivory horn. If you saw it you would believe in goodness. It simply took their breath away. It was, of course, a unicorn.

They would have stood staring in the orchard all day but the unicorn cantered up the path toward home. Applewood forgotten, they boys chased it, giggling. I think Ula was giggling too. When they finally caught up, the unicorn was nibbling on some tender lavender by the back door. “Run in and get it a blanket and some apples,” Ula instructed the boys. They ran inside and she leaned in close to look into the unicorn’s eyes. “Leon? Is that you?” No, these eyes were steady, kind, magical, not brash and mischievous, but welcome nevertheless.

It seemed the unicorn was here to stay. The boys climbed up on its back – Ula was surprised how gently. They were singing a song about honeybees, and picking green shoots of mint from the herb garden and feeding them to each other. Ula felt certain this guardian would look over the children while she got the bread ready, there were so many mouths to feed it would not be right to linger here too long. She pushed open the door to her cozy kitchen, delighted to discover that all of her loaves had somehow risen, light and fluffy and ready for the oven.
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Boat Building
When Boudica was a child, she had helped her people build the boats that they used to ply the rivers and coastal waters of her homeland. She still remembered her father kneeling on the graveled selvedge of the narrow bay, stretching lengths of stitched sealskin across the whale rib frame of the boat, while she and the other children daubed the seams with beach tar. The boats had been light enough for two people to carry on their shoulders, yet strong and seaworthy enough to ride the sudden swells and currents of the offshore waters.

Boudica needed to keep her thoughts and memories at bay, so she threw herself into the boat-building and began issuing orders like a captain of the guard. There were no whale ribs or seals in this thick jungle, but the understory was a tangle of small trees, and those would be far easier to work with than rigid bone. Soul- Splitter and Orthron made easy work of the cutting and trimming, and they soon had a pile of long, flexible saplings. At Boudica’s direction, Leon scrambled up a thick tree trunk and descended with a tangle of sinewy vines, while Blaze, Mirilda and Ghyra began cutting long wands of wire-tough underbrush and branches. Boudica sent in Elaren in search of sap and pitch. She was unsure of how they could harvest enough of either to waterproof an entire boat, but she trusted the druid to figure something out.

Boudica cut two long saplings to the same length and used a dagger to score grooves in the ends of each, after which she bound them together at the ends with vine. She then cut a stout branch to the length of one of her legs, carved a fork into each end and lashed it between the two long pieces. Bowed apart thus by this improvised yoke, the two long pieces - the gunnels - took the shape of a long, broad canoe. Boudica carefully measured the width between the gunnels fore and aft of the yoke, cut two sturdy pieces, boredcarved them as she had the yoke, and attached them crosswise as thwarts.

Next the keel. This was a crucial step, for a boat was no stronger than its keel, and if it was crooked or uneven, the boat would be difficult to maneuver. Boudica took the longest, sturdiest sapling trunk and bored holes through it at intervals of two hand-widths. His she did with a cantrip she had taught herself. Then she and Mirilda bent the keel like a longbow and wedged each end inside the vee of the bow and stern. Then she lashed the keep to the gunnels with more vine.

Then the ribs. Boudica measured and cut two score or more pieces that were roughly the thickness of Mirilda’s thumb, fed them through the holes in the keel. She bored holes in the bottom of the gunnels, then bent the ribs upward and notched them into the holes. Leon, who had been watching curiously, pitched in and worked forward from the stern as Boudica worked abaft from the bow. When they finished, they had the skeleton of a surprisingly light but sturdy canoe.

By then the others had returned with their wands of branch and brush and piled them at the riverside. These Boudica wove like a basket between the ribs and gunnels. This was precise, finicky work that would have taken a long time, but everyone knelt down and began weaving, and they worked surprisingly quickly. When they were finished, they stood back to admire their work.

“It looks really nice.” Leon said quietly, “but won’t it be a little leaky?”

The snap of a twig, and everyone spun to face the wall of jungle, raised their weapons and braced themselves. But it was only Elaren who stepped out of the brush, his arms heaped with flat pieces of honeycomb. “I wouldn’t recommend eating it,” he said, “but it’s just as sticky as pitch, and a lot easier to get.”

Nobody asked him how he had managed to pilfer honey from a hive of demonic bees. They started a fire to warm the honeycomb, and began working it into the weave of the boat. It was miserable work, and it took far longer than anyone anticipated. The honey was indeed sticky, and besides adhering to fingers and clothes and hair and everything else, it caused the swarms of insects, which were already dense, to thicken unimaginably. Boudica stoked the fire with wet wood, and they took turns fanning the smoke over the boat as they worked, but it did little more than make them cough and sweat. They could tell, however, that the abyssal honey was working, for it dried to the hardness of amber, so they swatted futilely at the insects and kept at it.

When they finally finished, everyone stood there exhausted, reeking of sweat and smoke, tendrils of blood from insect bites threading down their faces. They struggled to pry their fingers apart and peel their clothes from their skin. “Gods,” Mirilda muttered, “I think I’ve felt better after getting breathed on by a dragon.”

“Nicely done,” Boudica said. Then she took a deep breath. “This will carry three of us. Should we take a break or get right to work on the second one?”
Session: Game Session 40 - Sunday, May 20 2018 from 6:00 PM to 12:00 AM
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Terras Natais 2
“Minha mãe fez esses bolinhos, é para trazer sorte”

A mulher continuava na frente de Phiero falando “Phiero Blanche, todos esses anos desaparecido, o que aconteceu, você não se preocupa com os outros? 3 anos sem notícias e quando volta está vendendo a velha casa da família”. Phiero estava confuso com o que a mulher falava “desculpe..., mas eu conheço você? E o que que você está falando? ”, a mulher olhava incrédula para ele “o que aconteceu com você? Não se lembra de mim? Olha, venha vou fazer um chá”.


A casa era a um quarteirão de onde estavam, ela parecia familiar da mesma forma que a outra, mas Phiero não sabia explicar como. A mulher o fez entrar e sentar na sala, era um comodo pequeno com duas poltronas e um sofá. A lareira estava acesa e o calor aquecia os ossos congelados dele. Algum tempo depois a mulher trouxe uma chaleira com duas xicaras, além disso um prato com bolinhos, bolinhos exatamente como em alguns dos sonhos de Phiero, “desculpe, mas onde você comprou esses bolinhos? ”, perguntou Phiero analisando-os, “eu mesmo fiz, por que? ”, “Olha senhora você pode achar que eu estou louco, mas com certeza já vi esses bolinhos em um sonho meu”, a mulher se levanta e vai até a lareira, ela pega um retrato de uma moça provavelmente filha ou parente muito próxima, ela lentamente se aproxima de Phiero e pergunta “você sabe quem é ela”, a garota tinha cabelos claros e curtos, os olhos dela tinham uma cor esmeralda que parecia brilhar na foto, era a garota que aparecia em todos sonhos, Fleur, “eu vi ela nos sonhos também, eu a chamava de Fleur” , Phiero entrega o retrato para a mulher que cuidadosamente o coloca em cima da lareira, “ela é minha sobrinha, Fleur, veio morar comigo depois que seus pais morreram. Sabe, vocês eram muito amigos na infância... até você ir para Paris estudar e ela ir pra Londres”. Phiero estava atordoado com tudo aquilo, como tudo isso podia ser possível, ”Phiero...”.


A mulher se virou para ele vagarosamente “... você se lembra dos seus pais? ”, era uma pergunta absurdamente simples, como alguém não consegue se lembrar dos pais? Ele não lembrava, ele não havia notado, mas algo faltava, nada, nem voz, nem rosto, nem cheiro. Nada. O mundo de Phiero estava desabando, todo aquele tempo com uma rotina apertada fazia com que ele não tivesse muito tempo para pensar nisso, nem notara que isso faltava, mas, quando é que isso aconteceu? Essa perda de memória tão extensa? Ele não conseguia lembrar de sua infância, havia um buraco, havia algo faltando, o quão profundo era esse limbo e como... uma mão calmamente se apoia no ombro de Phiero, era a mulher, ela olhava com um olhar preocupado “Phiero, você não se lembra de nada não é mesmo? ” Ela pega um papel, escreve algumas coisas e entrega a Phiero, “aqui, tem o endereço de uma amiga, ela pode ajudar... e mais em baixo tem meu número, qualquer coisa liga para mim, não desaparece de novo”, Phiero se sentia acolhido naquele momento, “senhora tenho uma pergunta para você, antes de eu viajar para Paris havia feito uma promessa para a Fleur, pelo menos no meu sonho, você sabe que promessa era essa? ” A mulher meio confusa responde, ”não ela não me falou nada sobre isso, inclusive, pode me chamar de Nana, vocês costumavam me chamar assim, bem, a Fleur me chama assim até hoje. Ela está em Londres e não deve voltar tão cedo, a universidade está tomando todo tempo dela”.

Após acabar o chá a cabeça do Phiero latejava, era muita informação de uma vez, ele se levanta, pega um cartão e diz “olha, meu cartão, caso quiser falar algo só ligar ou mandar um e-mail”, depois de entregar o cartão Phiero pega a maleta e abre a porta preenchendo a sala com um ar gelado, quando ele foi dar o primeiro passo para fora a mulher o interrompe, “uma última pergunta, o que aconteceu com seu número antigo? A gente tentou ligar para você algumas vezes”, “a sim, eu fui roubado, o bandido me deu uma coronhada que me deixou no hospital e levou tudo que tinha...”, Phiero interrompe sua frase, ele olha nos olhos da mulher “Muito obrigado” e ruma de volta a Paris.
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