Open Chronicles Are You Here?

A roleplay open for anyone to join
Down came the stein from his lips. A bit of froth still clung there where new stubble made his upper lip rough. He wiped it off with the back of his still-warm left hand, and let the drink the bartender'd brought during the speech down near his lap.

He peered into its contents. Stared at the dark drink as he let the quiet between them grow, and his thoughts settle through the gaze of squinted eye.

"Let it end, huh?" He chuckled, took the last drink from his cup, and let it down. Clacked with relish against the countertop. His smile returned. His eye back to the faithful before him.

You big on poetry?" he asked, felt a little burp coming up. Turned his head and covered his mouth with his pale right hand, and said small, "'scuse me," looked back to the young woman. "Here's a little ditty I'm quite fond of myself," he cleared his throat, and spoke clear, and smooth,

In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said, "Is it good, friend?"
"It is bitter bitter," he answered;
"But I like it
Because it is bitter,
And because it is my heart.

The last word felt like smoke come pour from his lips. He smirked at the sound if.

Slapped the countertop, and left another silver coin pressed there beneath the flat of his hand. Fell into a lull as he thought on the last time he had read that poem, and the company he kept. How he had taken them far afield, and found later that they had left that place. No trace left behind to follow.

He grumbled a bit at that feeling. How it gnawed at him. Bitter and dark.

Marta Maisal
Last edited:

Marta glanced off for a second toward the tavern dancers, they who reveled in life, they who were experiencing a joy and a pleasure far closer to the questioned word, and then back to Garrod.

"But if it is my opinion of the poem that is the question, I shall give the answer. Far from producing anything resembling fun, I find it to be a wretched work, loathsome and bleak, depicting a contemptible thing, a deplorable, willful condition that is anathema to the good life and to a worthiness that is pleasing to the soul and to the gods, and this all with the gall of presenting itself as profound. But I am not here to speak of art, or what attempts to disguise itself as such."

Long fingers entwined, and her elbows rested on the bar counter. A light smile accompanied again her intent gaze.

"Shall you be forthright? What need have you of allegory, when there is no better speaker of what is contained within your breast than you who intimately knows it?"

Garrod Arlette
"Very well," said Marta after a small moment's consideration. And with a parting cordiality she added, "Enjoy your evening..." she knew not even his name for a proper direct address, and so improvised, "...and may what is good be yours."

With that she stood from the stool at the counter, collected her staff, and simply returned to her original table. One of the barmaids was nearby, and thus was she able to at last put in her order for supper. And as she came to wait, she sat with folded hands in her lap, watching the revelry of the dance proceed while at the same time considering the night's events.

First Naervo, and now the green-eyed man; both had gone less than ideally. Of the first it was simple trepidation and uncertainty of a kind she had seen many times before, for great were the matters of spirit. Of the second, what else was there for her to take from his account? His deliberate opaqueness was a cause for concern, or perhaps merely an indication that he'd truly no interest in collaboration other than what the weight of silver could purchase.

Nevertheless, her plan remained unchanged. Artenhild was close by, reachable within a small matter of days, and here at the crossroads of Exeter, well evidenced by the wide assortment of patrons in the tavern tonight, were a selection of warriors, adventurers, and mayhap even those given more to the Church's own Regulators in profession, character, or both.

In Regel did she have faith, and she believed in the favor he would show by placing all the necessary things which would spell the Artenhild vampire's end. Merely was it up to good men and women to make it so.

Garrod Arlette
In short order did her dinner arrive at her table: a modest serving, with no meat portion tonight. Marta finished most of it as the dancers danced and the tavern's general revelry continued. She unshouldered her satchel and set it on the table from it produced a quill, an ink bottle, and a small sheet of parchment fit for a letter.

She began writing her dispatch to the Church:

To Bashrahip Mustafa Junnal,

Priestess Marta Maisal reports that she has entered the town of Exeter, north of the Falwood of Liadain.
Already have I encountered several Letai in my travels, yet (sadly, I will add) none have been receptive to the flame of Jura and the light of Regel. Ajam ways are difficult to fully unravel, even if these poor souls seek remedies to ailments of the spirit. The Empire of Amol-Kalit remains my destination. There I shall maintain care and caution above all, and entrust myself all the more to Regel's guidance.

Briefly, I must write of a necessary detour in my mission, for I believe providence to be at work. An overheard conversation revealed to me that a foul Jin—a vampire, specifically—butchered nearly the whole of a company of fighting men and now threatens a town called Artenhild. Candidly: I am no Regulator, and Regel's peculiar distribution of gifts and talents among the faithful bestowed not unto me a formidable martial ability. Yet no one is called by the gods to a task which they find themselves comfortably capable. We are tested at the pleasure of the gods, and are in this way favored. I do not plan on slaying the Jin by myself, yet even among a hired company of my own, peril persists.

If another dispatch does not follow in one month's time, then fear not, for Regel has taken his faithful servant Marta into his embrace.

The last flame of Jura rests with us,
Priestess Marta Maisal

[Exit Thread]
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
Kerrick had made his choice before rising from his stool to whisk her away into a melody of movement-- He wouldn't have accepted her offer if there was any hesitation left in his mind about being seen. How could he worry about such a trivial thing, when this was so much more? Mave not only saw him but felt the chill of his pale flesh as he held her hand in his own, and met the pale, murky gaze of his eyes with the searing life that coursed through hers.

If Vandergard was going to allow himself to fully embrace this night as a man and not a Vampire, there could be no second-guessing himself.

Their dance began slow, a gentle sway to both the jaunty music cocooning around them and the ancient tunes that bounced around his head in archaic echoes of a time long forgotten. The vampire had not been lying when he'd claimed himself out of practice, but a partner so brimming with grace and vitality as Mave quickly pulled him from the muck of sloth and reawakened the memories burned into his muscles. It was natural, as much as breathing or drinking, the movements they made.

The longer it lasted, the lighter he felt. With the bouncing drumbeat of revelry resting underneath the merry tones of the song, Kerrick pulled the elf in closer to his chest before dipping her low enough that his hand at her midsection was nearly all that held her aloft and brought her back to balance. "I didn't realize I was dancing with such a natural..." Kerrick muttered with a soft grin on his face "You move with me, and not in response to me. That's a rare treat."

Kerrick lifted his arm to spin her, then extended it outward as she finished and quickly pulled her towards him once more, bringing her back against his chest. Vandergard held her there briefly before lifting her up by the hips and allowing her to rotate in his grip, landing to face him once more.

"Impeccable, Mave."

Maveriel Valthoras
Amid the breezy beats, of bustling drums and spruce flute and buoyant violin, those dancers move.
They thundered, boots and shoes thudding upon the tavern wood, eyes like lightning that flashed.
One, two—step and bounce—two, three and four more dancers anyhow—on the floor, in a groove.
Yet, amid the revelry, this scenic setting of patrons giving in, a woman saw a man in their dance.

No devilry, no vampire, amid his pallid visage, as he suddenly pulled the elf in closer toward him.
She hadn’t expected the movement from what she suspected less than accustomed to all of this.
So she held back a gasp and a giggle, letting the fiddle laugh for her, as the music began to shift.
Still violin, still drum, but neither so still, as either man and woman drink in one another’s vision.

In a moment, after being dipped backward, Mave was back standing straight, Kerrick before her.
His face inches away from her own, so mysterious, supernatural, speaking of her as a natural dancer.
“I move with the music,” she grinned back at him. “You’re just lucky you’re moving in unison to it.”
She winked, and in the next moment he spun her, as if in a challenge; all the while she just grinned.

Can't help it, flying in the wind, spinning into the distance, tempting her partner to let her go.
Only, he didn’t. He couldn’t. Kerrick kept Mave’s hand in his grip then twirled her back to him.
A moment of closeness, breasts against chest, wherein the pair might have kissed, but nope.
He lifted her, she twirled like a whirlwind, whipping her legs, bereft of dress, hands on hips.

Mave landed, gazing into her partner’s face. “I’ve had practice.”
She looked left, looked right, suddenly aware of their audience.
Out of practice, my backside. “It looks like the pressure is on...”
Fire in her eyes. “Now stop staring and show me what you got.”

The creature in her arms was equal parts enchanted and dumbfounded by the power she held over him in this moment of mutual movement and the growing number of patrons who watched on and admired. Did they understand? The true beauty of what they were bearing witness to? No, Kerrick doubted that very much. Only he and the woman beaming and laughing in his arms knew the significance of their dance.

Mave was life, luminance of being poured from every pore of smooth skin as she twirled and moved as though she were one with the subtle vibrations in the air around her, every brush of her flesh against his was pure energy, burning fire that spread across the floor and drew in their onlookers with its tempting warmth.

So powerful was the searing vibrance that it permeated every cold, dead pore of the Vampire she moved in time with, warming the blood that had long since gone cold within his veins, thawing the heart that had frozen over with time and isolation. After so long spent numb and cold to the world around him, only as Mave pressed herself to him did he again feel his heart beating in his chest, as though it had never truly stopped.

Maybe it hadn't.

"There is no pressure. The only one I'm looking to impress now is you."

Both of Kerrick's hands now came to her hips, pulling her flush against his body as she looked up at him with that blazing stare. Pivoting, Vandergard spun the both of them around and trusted her to lift her legs in a dazzling flourish. As she came back down the vampire brought his arms underneath her to sweep her into a bridal carry, one hand against her back and one tucked into the crook of her legs. He moved without her for a few second's time, dancing to the music with her in his arms before lifting the arm under her legs and allowing her to flip backward back onto her feet. The moment she did, he used the hand still flush with her back to support her as he dipped her low and brought his mouth to her neck.

Time seemed to stop for a moment.

It was now that he would have ordinarily taken his bite and claimed his prey. When they were at ease, vulnerable and defenseless. Her blood, so hot and full of vigor, could have been all his were he only to sink his teeth in. But he did not. Kerrick merely held his lips across her flesh for a moment, holding that urge back with a silent whimper before raising her back to her feet and stepping away, still gently holding one hand.

"Forgive me. Force of habit."

Maveriel Valthoras
Oh... So smooth... What else was a vampire if not deadly of tongue? To this, Kerrick was true.
Trying to impress me, is he? The man’s efforts were working so far at least while he moved.
He was looking, his eyes into her eyes, but he wasn’t just staring. This was a man of action.
Kerrick’s hands found Mave’s hips, tugging her in, as she emitted a bit of a gasp in reaction.

He spun her, trusted her, and his judgment was permitted as much as rewarded in its effort.
Mave lifted her legs, spreading them, feet whipping within wind, twirling in a dancer’s curve.
The backs of her knees suddenly grasped, his hand beneath, with another cradling her back.
The woman wrapped an arm round the man’s neck, his chest being met with another hand.

Had she been wearing a dress her modesty might have cost her as she flipped this moment.
Landing on her feet, Mave arched her back into the dance, her lithe figure curved as beckoned.
Moving like liquid, a river of momentum, a current of unison, both dancers in shared essence.
They didn't know each other, this elf and this vampire, although they were waves of one ocean.

Mave went low, the small of her back guided by a firm hand, supporting her upward.
She saw the ceiling, the crowd upside down, breathing while her heart was pumping.
As if time had stopped, the woman spread her lips, given to the dance, blood rushing.
Something touched her neck, lips, while she closed her eyes, biting her lip with thirst.

She was swung upward, pushed at a distance, gracefully, forcefully, her hand in a man’s.
Mave narrowed her gaze, blazing bright firelight, challenging the vampire just to stand.
“Mercy,” she bared her teeth, whispering. “We will see if you deserve any.” Hand in hand.
Her turn to get aggressive. Elven strength. Jerking him in. Lifting a leg for him to grab.

Kerrick Vandergard
Mave continued to impress Kerrick, disallowing the flattering tension of his lips and the points of his teeth against the soft flesh of her neck to throw her off balance for more than a moment. If she were any lesser, if she had shown any less vibrance in his arms, the Vampire may not have restrained himself in that final moment. Oh, but what a shame it would be to stop now when his own blood surged with a warmth that had eluded him for such a long, agonizing time.

No, hers was a life he would not extinguish. It was not his place, nor was he worthy of such a gargantuan task. Instead, he would revel and bathe in her fire, allowing each touch, each breath to thaw his cold and frozen heart. Those touches grew fervent and hungry between them, their breaths became thick with excitement and beat across their faces each time their eyes met, a shared cocktail of excitement and exertion in every gasp and sigh.

With quiet, hushed words she so temptingly threatened him, her passion stoked by his actions. When they'd started she was but a glowing ember, and with hands and lips he had ignited a raging inferno that now dared him to soak in its searing tongues without being incinerated by the heat, a challenge he was more than happy to accept. With impressive strength she grasped his hand, taking the lead in this mutual motion and all but thrusting her leg into his grip.

Kerrick took more than what was offered, sliding his palm up to her thigh and pressing himself flush against Mave, tucking his head against her shoulder as though he may again tease at the skin of her nape. Alas Vandergard was not in the habit of using the same trick twice, and his cheek merely rested against hers as he used his grip to lift her up off of the ground, trusting her to loop her other leg around his waist so that he could spin across the floor while holding her aloft in his arms.

"Release your grip, only use your lower body." He murmured into her ear. "Trust me."

Should the elven beauty entertain his request, Kerrick would grip her by the legs wrapped around his midsection, and lean forward just enough for the scarlet-haired woman to begin arching back towards the floor, once again staring at their audience inverted. Trusting in Mave's strength, he slowly loosened his grip on her legs and allowed her to hold herself up with her lower half, and his hands slid towards her hips, grasping her sides and pulling her back up, where she could unhook her legs and land on her feet in front of him once more.

Inches in front of him.

Maveriel Valthoras
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
The woman’s leg lifted in the dance, gripped in the hand of the man, as bidden. Against the fabric of her pants she could feel his fingers, firm as the drums, as they slid upward with the thumb. He held her in place, one another pressed together, but what never stayed still was Mave’s heart as it thrust against her ribcage.

For a brief moment, time was motionless, as her bright ambers burned into his dark greys. What was it about him? Amid that pallid complexion, the hunger and thirst of a being both dead and alive, was it some semblance of a spirit within that did it?

She had no time to figure it out. An instant later, she felt his cheek slide against hers like his hand had slid along her thigh. His face was cold and hollowed as it touched her own; warm, angular, elven beside the vampire.

She might have closed her eyes, but he would not let her. Neither would the dancer within her. Kerrick raised, and Mave gave in. The music drifted in their midst, a violin as smooth as a woman’s skin, the drum as hard as a man’s muscle.

The instruments in unison, like the dancers, Mave reacted as if the pair were reading each other’s mind. Her other leg swung upward, wrapping both limbs around Kerrick’s hips, as he took her for a spin.

He whispered for her to only use her lower body, his words like embers in her ears, demanding she trust him. She had no choice at that moment. She was at his mercy and they both knew it. So she went low as beckoned.

Her thighs gripped his hips, arching her spine, her long hair, red as firelight, flowing from her visage to hang toward the floor as her eyes glimpsed the spectators. A moment to recognize that there were no other dancers. Just the pair, surrounded, like a mountain amid a forest.

Fingers squeezed Mave’s hips as Kerrick shifted, letting her find gravity, and as soon as her feet did she bent her knees. She went low again, squatting, trailing fingers down his chest, lips inches from his stomach, hands in hands.

Upright again, she let him twirl her before pressing her back into his front, stepping to the rhythm. Craning her head into the crook of his neck, one hand draped across her shoulder, fingers interlaced at the spaces in between hers and his for him to do as he wished. A moment, quick as a heartbeat, but in a dance like this those moments were endless.

Kerrick Vandergard
  • Love
Reactions: Kerrick Vandergard
This had long ceased to be a simple dance between two strangers, eager to forget their woes and quicken the arrival of the moon and stars. With each move that shifted from practiced to profound, from simple to sensual, the illusion of formality dissolved in the heat between their bodies.

Hands wandered, breath was lost agasp, and each time they met once more their lips flirted more and more with flesh.

Kerrick felt alive, as though Mave now shared her essence, her will to exist with him. It channeled through her fingertips as she explored his body with her touch, came through every heated breath that rolled across his face and neck, and boiled within him from the searing flame within her eyes.

The tightness of her thighs as they lock around his waist, the grace with which she allowed him to fully support her, putting her beauty on display for all of their drunken, awestruck onlookers.

It captivated him just as much, drew him even further into the web he was already thoroughly ensnared in. In life, Mave thrived. And in watching her thrive Kerrick felt himself do the same. He craved this, and yearned for it more than he ever had blood.

As she lowered herself nearly to her very knees before him, he looked down at her with eyes no longer dull and gray. There was a spark, some flickering ember of existence behind the death that was so prevalent in him as he stared down at the crimson-haired beauty.

Rising with a spin and pressing her back to his, Kerricks' arms immediately found their way around her waist, holding her snugly against his warming body. Her head lulled back, again exposing her neck to him. This time he acted, tilting his face and bringing his lips to her skin.

There were some gasps, those who had discerned Kerrick's nature were concerned he'd just bitten the elf. Indeed, Mave would feel the slightest hint of pressure, Vandergard's fangs barely pressing against the thin layer of flesh protecting her throat. But he did not bite. Instead, Kerrick kissed her nape, a gentle, slow expression of the feelings she'd awoken within him.

He did not allow it to last too long. This wasn't the place for such things. Pulling his lips away from her neck, he whispered into her ear.

"I won't apologize for that one... That was intentional."

Maveriel Valthoras
  • Love
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
His arms tighten. A fine grip. Filled with fire. The hands of a man, firm, never mind the dried eyes of a vampire. Wrapping around the narrow waist of a woman. Fingertips dipping into her stomach, like all this was some wanton wish as her hips shifted to the music.

Pressing into his the same moment he takes her gesture and moves in for the kiss. She beckoned it. He was tempted to do it. Teasing him, maybe, daring blood to bleed, for him to break her skin.

Do it. A voice in her head demanded, as if her neck was held at swordpoint. He wanted it. She taunted him. Her heart pumped. Blood rushed. To the art of the drum. And the violin glides as a vampire’s fangs slide over flesh, stealing that elven breath.

Yet he wouldn’t. Couldn’t. As predicted. Not a bite, like the audience expected, but a kiss.
She closed her eyes to the moment, breast rising, fingers intertwining, while biting her lip.
Suddenly every fiber of her being tingled as if the fire from her eyes had entered her body.
She gasps, the tender touch of his mouth around her neck leaving her content yet wanting.

No apology was necessary. The whisper in her ear was met with a grin as Mave gazed up at Kerrick from a mistakenly submissive position. “So is this.” The woman whispered to the man.

At that, she pushed him back, fist to stomach, more a shove than a punch. Before Kerrick could recover, she swung forward, wrapping a leg around his hip again, fingers curling through hair at the nape of his neck, daring him to do something different.

Kerrick Vandergard
The voice in his own head would have replied to her taunt with an imperceptible scoff. There had been a time during the course of this night when Kerrick had wanted to taste her blood, wanted to feel the heat of her life washing over his tongue and sinking into his pores. That was no longer his desire, she'd dispelled such violent instincts with the rush of the wind under her feet, the heat of her flesh pressed against his own, and the sensation that her wandering hands sent through every long-dead nerve beneath his flesh, reviving them with her efforts.

The vampire no longer wished for her blood. Now, the vampire simply yearned for her.

For was this dance even that any longer? No, it was a display of desires unspoken, of lust restrained beneath decorum and social norms. The way her waist expanded with her breath as his fingertips had dug into her flesh, the twisting of her hips against his midsection as he'd held her aloft, arching against him in a manner even the drunkards among their crowd would blush at.

When finally he succumbed to his need for her skin against his tongue, it was a culmination of the inevitable, and she rewarded him in kind. The rise of her chest against his own, the tremble in her breath as he traced searing shapes against her neck in search of the smallest sample of her that he could gather, those were all the fruits of his effort.

“So is this.”

Mave's voice was whisper quiet, and yet deafening to his ears. She pushed him back, breaking their embrace for only the briefest of moments before leaping back to wrap around him with both leg and arm, her fingers curling and claiming a fistful of her hair.

Kerrick took her then, using her momentum and stepping back into a spin, his arms looping around her waist and hands now roaming, one gripping the small of her back and the other resting dangerously on the swell of her backside as he leaned forward and at last claimed her lips with his own.

Maveriel Valthoras
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
A dance. Of celebration. A first for this man and woman. Vampiric. Elven. Yet it was just as much a dance of dragons. For there was fire in their chests, burning, yearning, then in their breath. Yes, their hands were like claws, pointed, sharp, digging, on skin pale and pallid. Their feet were tails, whipping within wind. Their arms were wings. He was charmed. So was she.

Do something different, she dared him, and he did. Her fingers curling into his hair, like a dragon’s talons in rubies. She knows he sees her as a beauty—yet she sees him as a gem in turn—burning.

He takes her then, using her momentum, stepping back into a spin, arms around her waist.
She feels his fingers above her hips, digging in, lifting her, and grazing, like within a mane.
Elf. Vampire. Neither was a horse nor an animal. Yet, amid their music, they were slaves.
Hand on her back, low not high, other on her backside, not shy, like two lips that claim.

Oh, they had names. His was Kerrick. Hers was Mave.
Kerrick Vandergard. Maveriel Valthoras. Plain as day.
They had history, but right now they share one fate.
Paths aligned, intertwined, both predator and prey.

His lips on hers. She closes her eyes. Lost in the solace of a moment, trapped within its time.
Uninterrupted, unbroken, this poisonous passion like lotion on the skin, hand shifts to thigh.
An ocean of bliss, it was one way to describe this kiss, and never mind the audience’s sight.
Some semblance of that hourglass, flower in sand. He is the amber and she is the dragonfly.

She opens her eyes, suddenly aware of her grip on his hair, no longer curling but tugging it.
Leg around his hip, shouting at him to not relinquish, squeezing in, and ever tormenting him.
“Kerrick,” she whispers, her word slithering in his ear, breaking the kiss. “How do you do this?”
She wouldn’t wait for an answer, breaking away, fingers at his neck’s nape, her lips kissing it.

Kerrick Vandergard
  • Cthuulove
Reactions: Kerrick Vandergard
Dare he answer that question? The truth was dark, ugly, and repulsive to face. This moment was real, regardless of the road they'd traveled to arrive here. It would be shameful to risk calling a storm so perfect by returning to his problems, by digging up the roots of why he'd come to this tavern in the first place. It certainly hadn't been to find the attentions of a lovely Elf, to sweep her off her feet and, if the night continued in this fashion, into his bed.

Kerrick had come to drink himself to the point of unremembrance. Only when his cheek hit the cold wood of the table and his eyes fell shut to deprive himself of sight would he have been satisfied with his night's ending. The Vampire was tired, exhausted beyond belief by living in a world that did not accept him. Those who would consider him a heartless creature knew not the heart they wounded with their upturned noses and silent isolation.

Ah, but now, with Mave's lustful whisper in his ear, her hungry lips upon his neck, and her hands so barely restraining themselves from attempting to explore every inch of his body, he no longer cared about that. The truth was that seduction came easily to a Vampire; It was an instinct, necessary to lure victims without causing much of a fuss.

It would have been so easy for Vandergard to dismiss the woman's attraction towards him as a result of that, but what allured him so was that he was nearly certain this was more. This was desire. Something he hadn't felt truly in so many years, something that her tongue drawing shapes on the pale flesh of his nape only heightened, his fingertips pressing against her soft skin, his arms tightening around her, some base desire to be one with her permeating his very being.

No longer did he wish for their fire to be viewed by the masses. Kerrick grew tired of being entertainment for them as they drank and wallowed as he had before she'd seized his attentions. Rather than answer the question the woman laid thickly to his ear, he whispered back through a breathy moan, his fingers sliding up the length of her back.

"Let us leave this place, so that I may show you more, Mave."

Maveriel Valthoras
  • Cthuulove
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
In the moment, as her lips opened and kissed his neck, unbroken, she might bite his flesh.
It is what he may have done to her moments ago as it were. Was it seduction? Sustenance.
That need to feed. To drink in this passion. To toss caution into the wind. To feel fabric. Skin.
Vampire. Yes. Yet the elf’s desire burned higher like the fire in her eyes, as if she was a witch.

He was bewitched, trapped in her net like a bird in a nest with no wings. Enchanted. He can't flee.
On his frozen skin, the woman felt heat rush in, as if his blood was bubbling, boiling, even cursing.
In his pallid complexion, as she gazed away from his neck and upon his face, she spied all his trials.
In his eyes, grey as storm clouds swirling round, she saw the hole in his soul. So cold…yet not so vile.

How had it come to this? That was a question for the hourglass as sand is trapped at the stem.
Maveriel Valthoras had entered this tavern to kick back and relax, but one man had taken her breath.
Stolen it, as if it was never hers to begin with, when all she had asked of him was but a dance.
Damn you… She bit her lip, her breast rising, like the roaring fireplace, his fingers cradling her back.

“Do you mean to take me in the back alley?” Mave grinned, daring him to answer.
“I’m not that kind of woman.” No, for Maveriel was a ranger, a warrior, a survivor.
Her face was inches away from his. One moment of bliss. Nothing else mattered.
No one did save Mave and Kerrick. “Go,” she commanded him. “And I will follow.”

Kerrick Vandergard
  • Cthuulove
Reactions: Kerrick Vandergard
Kerrick didn't care what events had led them to this end. To concern himself with such things would be taking the result for granted, and the Vampire wouldn't trade the hungry expression of the elf in his arms for anything, nor the sheen of her lips, the need in her eyes and the heat of her skin. He was no better than his brethren tonight, he figured; His thirst was overtaking him, his hunger ruling his actions to a point that he could no longer stop himself.

It was not blood that he desired from Mave on this night though. No, it was bliss. To feel alive, to feel her flesh and heat against his own. Not because he'd lured her into some sanguine trap with aim to turn her and use her to his will, but because of a shared need, a mutual zest for life he'd not felt since before his blood had run cold and callous. Vandergard craved her, in the most carnal and base of nature's ways, and with each scalding press of her lips against his flesh he was increasingly certain she wanted the same from him.

"The back alley?" He murmured back to his partner, a playful smirk pulling at the corners of his mouth as he gazed down at her, those alluring amber eyes alight with the competitive streak he'd quite grown fond of in the last hour. She would give him nothing, not without playing the game they both had been trading moves in since her invitation to dance. Now, their duel rapidly approached a climax, and Kerrick thought them both to be winners. "No, I mean to take you in my bed."

With a single word and a muttered command, she brought an end to this phase of their night and eagerly invited the next. Wordlessly Kerrick unraveled his arms from her body, taking comfort in the knowledge they would not be without her for long, and in much more favorable conditions. Paying no attention to the leery eyes of the patrons, The Vampire strolled casually through the crowd of onlookers, beyond the bar they'd met at, and up the stairs to the inn rooms the Tavern offered.

She could follow, or she could not. Kerrick did hope for her company through the remainder of the night, but even if this was the end of their journey, he felt his skin glow with life, his blood pump with warmth long forgotten. Tonight, he'd been alive once more.

Maveriel Valthoras
  • Cthuulove
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
So, no back alley. Good. Bad. Drat. Damn. She winked back with a smiling eye and hers is amber.
His is grey, colder to her warmth, though his bed would surely have sheets as much as covers.
Challenge given, challenge accepted, Kerrick went just then as Kerrick was thus bidden.
Go. She had commanded him. And I will follow. He did. She did. Heart in chest. His bed.

He did not go alone. She followed. Though he did not know it at their opening moment.
His hands pry from her body, more patient than shy, like a dog’s paws before it whines.
Oh, she might only hope to have him wrapped around her finger, but it would be her lie.
His own man, his own creature, this vampire saw her blood, not as water, but an ocean.

Maybe there was some poetry in there somewhere, some such nonsense—but whatever.
Mavriel’s heart skipped beats, fluttered like wings or some dumb girl’s eyelids. Breathe…
In. Out. One step after the other. Tavern left behind. World gone and forgotten. So empty.
Only she exists in this moment. Only he. Stars in the sky. Quiet. Glowing for him. For her.

She could follow, or she could not. She’d made up her mind and decided moments earlier.
Kerrick would soon know her answer, however, for his hand would be with hers up the step.
Her fingers filling the spaces between his, climbing side by side. In the hallway. To the end.
A corridor. A door. Kerrick’s hand on the knob. He had only to turn it—as an elf’s heart burns.

Kerrick Vandergard
The door to Kerrick's room swung open, and the last thing that anybody else would see of the pair was The Vampire taking the elf back into his arms moments before it clicked shut behind them. For one more night, in that little room, Kerrick was alive again. Maveriel brought him back, breathed air into his lungs each time her lips pressed against his, warmed his cold, lifeless flesh by pressing it to her own. The scarlet-haired woman made him feel pleasures and sensations he'd long forgotten, and instilled in him the vigor he needed to take her, to make her his own until daybreak called them away.

Vandergard reveled in it, reveled in her. By dawn, he knew every inch of Maveriel's body, had felt every ounce of her passion and fervor as it mixed and intertwined with his own. When at last the sun did peek through the window of his room, and the Vampire did awake with her cradled in his arms, he was still a cursed creature. Now, though, he was a cursed creature who'd been blessed by the touch of a beautiful woman.

Even in the world of the unholy and impure, such a boon meant something. It was enough to draw him from sleep with a smile,

It was not until Vandergard had nearly completed redressing himself that he felt Maveriel stir on the other side of the bed. As he looked over his shoulder at the elf, through a curtain of unkempt silvery hair falling over his face, he wondered if he would ever see her again. Were they but two strangers passing on a fateful night, bound to coincidence? Was there something more to the shared fire they'd found? Or, was she just as unsure as he?

"Are you leaving town today?" He asked her, knowing well they were far beyond the typical morning pleasantries after they'd sated one another long into its early hours. "Or have you more business here?" Neither of them had intended to take a bedmate the previous night, he was rather certain. Hopefully his indiscretion had not too severely hampered her schedule.

"Either way... you've my aide and company, should you desire it."

Maveriel Valthoras
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Maveriel Valthoras
Bliss. That’s what they called this. Complete. Utter. Total. Bliss. If it was an instrument then it was the sweet serene violin, the thump of the drum, the whisper and the whistle of the flute. Yet bliss was just as much a kiss on the lips too. On the skin. On the shin. Every inch. Inside. Outside. A mountain as much as an abyss.

In definition? Perfect happiness. Joy. Uncountable. Uncontrollable. It was the silent voice of last night, on the floor before the room, when music gripped two persons in everyone else’s view. The elf. The vampire. The man. The woman. From one moment to the next. Higher and higher. Bliss.

The door had opened. He led her in. And she entered with him. The rest needed no explanation. Yet it went something like this.

Hot breath on the neck. And she let him bite hers. Gently if firmly. And she did tease him back with her own teeth. And beware that elven agility. Fingers on chest. His ripped shirt. Pushed onto the bed. As soft and hard as the earth.

Yet there was no dirt in this. This wasn’t mindless. It wasn’t madness. This was passion. Fierce, to be certain. Sudden. Unbidden, after a fashion, yet where else was their dangerous dance going to lead except to that very moment?

Her fingers had filled the spaces between his, cradled his arms over her, hers over his, legs like webs, and the next moment two had become one.
The night went on, from dusk to dawn. The world breathed, in and out, but the world didn’t matter, because only that man and that woman mattered in those moments. Only their breath. Only their heartbeats thundering in their chests.

Birds chirped outside an open window. The curtains billowed. Had to be opened so as to chill the sweat that glistened the skin, enveloped the bed. The woman yawned to the dawn with a languid stretch. She felt like the world had already ended and it was just the two of them left.

She looked left, upon the drapes plain as day. That fabric should be silken... A silly notion, but she thought about it anyway. “Are you leaving town today?” His voice had spoken. When she blinked, it was like a droplet of a moment trapped in an ocean, vast as the expanse, suddenly broken.

Unkempt fiery red hair over her face, she wondered if she would ever see him again. Were they but two strangers passing on a fateful night, bound to coincidence? Was there something more to the shared fire they’d found? Or, was he just as unsure as her?

An elf. A vampire.

Maveriel Valthoras beckoned Kerrick Vandergard. She finally looked at him, naked beneath her covers as he dressed. There was a smile in her eyes, those same eyes whose light he had swallowed; and on her lips, those same lips he had tasted and bit. “Bring me breakfast. Talk of town and today can wait.”

For this was their day, their dance, their story, their song and prologue.

Kerrick Vandergard
“Bring me breakfast. Talk of town and today can wait.”

Her words were few and brief, but the meaning they held went far beyond the pair of sentences she offered him. For behind that simple request was a reassurance; a message of comfort from the woman of the living world, to the man who's sense of time had been warped and corrupted by death.

This doesn't have to end if you don't want it to.

Kerrick found himself smiling, an untainted and pure grin painted across his face. Even last night, his lips had been tainted with lust when he'd allowed himself to smile. Now it was not desire, but a warmth, an intangible fondness that found him. Somehow, this Elf he'd known only for a day understood him in a way that no other mortal had.

Turning back and resting a knee on the mattress they'd shared through the night, the Vampire leaned across the bed and placed another kiss to Maveriel's lips. For a moment, Kerrick worried that the lightning he'd felt every time she kissed him that previous night would be no more, that it had been fueled by alcohol and dancing. How relieved he was when the softness of her mouth against his still sent that shiver of heat down his spine.

No, this wasn't over yet.

"I'll return shortly, Maveriel."

The wait for breakfast wasn't long. This tavern did not have many rooms, and most of last night's crowd had filed out shortly after the two of them had made their grand display and subsequent exit. As the smell of cooking meat filled Kerrick's nostrils while he sat at the bar and waited for the food to be brought out, the smile that she'd brought him still lingered.

It was funny... hysterical, actually. He was a Vampire, a creature of the night who preyed on others for blood to sustain himself. Here he sat, grinning like human fresh out of his formative years as he ordered food for a woman who'd made his heart flutter. Vandergard's peers had told him he'd gone soft before he left their cabal of sin and vice.

It seemed now that they were correct.

Kerrick returned to their room, a plate of warm food in hand for his bedmate, draped only in sheer sheets and glowing in the aftermath of what they'd brought to one another. He found himself staring for a moment. She'd been beautiful last night, but today... he wished he could preserve the image in his mind.

"I paid your tab from last night while I was at it." Kerrick placed the plate on the side table beside her. "I don't think either of us would have drank that much if we hadn't sat together, anyways... You do know how to sweet talk a creature of the unholy, Mave. Obviously..."

Maveriel Valthoras
Was it expected? Even poetic? That simple movement. One motion. One turn of the head. As if she had beckoned him back to bed without even knowing it. Subconscious. A wicked aspect of Mave’s brain. Yet she wasn’t unconscious. She was awake. And she hadn’t sent him away. Had she played? Was this just some silly game?

Breakfast, she mentioned, and he might have left just then. Might have disappeared from her life entirely that very moment. People disappear all the time. It happened. It is what it is. But he didn’t. The door hadn’t opened once inch, no creak in its hinge, for the door hadn’t yet opened to begin with.

No, Kerrick turned back, and any mortal or immortal could understand that. Assuming they could comprehend what it meant to be lost, not in lust, perhaps not even in love…but in passion. That emotion that was gripped in the fist of the man, the woman, and bit between the lips.

She had to admit it. She had tested him a bit. Tempted him with her image. Presented on that bed, naked beneath the sheets, as if her body was begging him to take it all over again. So when his knee rested on the mattress, his very presence dancing with fabric like druids with a megalith, his legs yet silent, she couldn’t help but bite her lip, and imagine her teeth were his. And if her blood might flow like the ocean then so be it.

He had crossed the distance. Leaned in. She was motionless. She was frozen. He kissed her, as bidden as unbidden, the skin on his lips finer than any fabric, as warm as what he had given to her core the night before. In that instant, Mave might have gripped Kerrick by the neck, plunged him back into bed, and tossed both breakfast and the day away as if the only hunger and thirst that mattered was hers for him.

…Oh…to be alone yet again…

A silly notion for a silly woman in the end.

And nonsense, as proven, never made sense.

He stepped away. And if he considered walking away, let no curse befall the vampire, night or day…but Mave may yet never get out of bed until the stars cry for darkness, and the light sighs a silent breath…

When he returned, he found her still inside the covers, but sitting up. The sheets preserved her modesty, whatever his image of her, with a hint of cleavage, shoulders as bare as her disheveled hair. Goodness, gal, you must look a mess…

Yet breakfast looked anything but. Eggs, bacon, tomato, sausage, spinach. Other complements and condiments to go with. There was a new hunger in Mave now, a new burn; an echo in the emptiness of her stomach; strokes of a silent violin that cried Maveriel Valthoras…do not listen…do not give into him…for to do so would be so very…foolish…

“I wouldn’t put it past me,” she teased. Her tongue was as gentle as it had been the previous evening. “I go to taverns to eat and drink and dance.” Her hunger, her thirst, manifested in the fire in her eyes as they burned into his. “Is it the unholy’s way to pay for a lady like me as if she were some common harlot?”

She gave him a second, studying his visage, before curling her lips into a grin. The elf couldn’t help it. Tempted to sink her teeth into him as much as her breakfast, she lifted her limb, held her hand to him as if ready to dance all over again.

“Come. Help me out of bed. I want us to dine at the table. By the window. Talk and eat.” She looked again. “Is that a pot of coffee or tea?”

Kerrick Vandergard