Private Tales New Places, New Faces

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Kir

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"Right." He said with a nod. "But you know how your parents stand with all of this."

At least he assumed she knew. "It's about those who you don't know, those you can influence and sway."

Kress, how many times had he given this speech?

He could still remember little Valeri, talking to her about how to rule and get her parents to understand what she desired. The little Princess had been insistent even then, smart, but never knowing how to channel her passions.

Kir couldn't help but feel a connection to those days.

"You can't change the future on your own, Neveah." He told her quietly. "You need friends, allies."

Slowly he glanced around the room. "Find those who will speak for you, even when you're not in the room."
 
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Neveah

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She gave Kir a funny look. “You know, you’re pretty wise for a bodyguard.” He knew a lot about politics and she had to wonder what his life growing up had been like. Who he’d been around.

Taking a breath and forcing herself to relax, she stepped into the bustling room. For how much she hated these formal events, she handled them like she was born to do them. Easy conversation flowed from her lips. A lot of folk were curious to see one of the mourning princesses. Each person she left felt as though they were connected with the young lady. A smile on their faces.

Her mother beamed with silent pride from across the room. Even as her father tracked her with his own relief.

Neveah extracted herself from a conversation with the healers and made her way to the food table. She swiped a goblet of wine. Looking up, she thought she caught a movement in the shadows across the room. But when she looked further there was nothing. She offered Kir the goblet of wine. Then hesitated. “Oh. Are you allowed to have some?”
 
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Kir

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"You're not the first princess i've guarded." Kir commented simply, letting Neveah step forward and begin her conversation with the healer.

The werebear stayed back, deciding it was probably for the best if he kept his distance for now.

He knew enough about politics to understand that his presence really only created questions. Questions that did not need to be answered. It wasn't a secret of course, but the focus had to be on what Neveah desired, not the large bodyguard that now traveled along with her.

That was how it went throughout the night until Neveah returned to his side, goblet of wine plucked from one of the silvery trays. "I am."

He said, glancing in the direction that she seemed to stare.

"But I've never much liked wine." His nose wrinkled slightly. "Something about the smell."
 
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Neveah

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Smoky brows rose along her tanned skin. A shrug through her shoulders as she brought it to her lips and took a gulp. She liked all drink. Mostly since her sister's death. Anything to really numb the pain and get her a little lost for a moment.

"Do smells bother you often? Is it a werebear thing?"

She was naturally curious.
 
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Kir

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A nod tipped his head. "They do."

No point in denying it really.

"And it is." He confirmed as he glanced down at her. "My sense of smell got...much better after I was bitten."

Not that he had ever suffered for a lack of being able to smell things. The sense had simply gotten twenty times better after his affliction. "What I liked was now better and What I didn't like..."

Kir made a slight face. "Well, you can imagine."
 

Neveah

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It made sense to her. He'd threatened that he could sniff her out if he needed to. Perhaps that's how he was able to track her all this time without her ever finding out. He could maintain a certain distance away.

She took another gulp of wine.

"What do I smell like to you?"

From the corner of the room it looked like the king and queen were headed their way.
 
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Kir

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Kir's nose seemed to twitch for a moment. "It's not easy to describe."

The bodyguard said truthfully.

"Every person has their own scent. A dozen different things mixed together." A frown pulled at his lips for a moment as he considered. "Some are more...distinct than others."

Though he'd never found a true reason for that. "A sweetness, maybe. Honey, mixed with lavender but an undertone of..."

Kir trailed off for a moment, spotting the King and Queen. "Saffron bud."

There was more, but describing it was difficult. He had not the tongue nor the knowledge of poetry to put it into truth.
 
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Neveah

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Nev's eyes found her mother and father and she promptly downed the rest of the wine, quickly setting the empty goblet on a tray being carried by one of the serving staff. She tried to keep the tension out of her shoulders. The glower off her face.

She was still sore about her father ordering her to be locked in her rooms.

But it was her mother who swooped in first, going to pull Neveah into a hug. Just as strong as the one from the courtyard before. A silent, pleading look briefly crossed from Neveah to Kir.
 
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Kir

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Kir didn't move.

Separating a Queen from her daughter was hardly on his list of duties, and he had a feeling if he even tried it would end up with him being thrown in the gulag. Best to just stand there and look as protective as humanly possible.

Thus he didn't even look at Neveah and her mother.

Instead he let his eyes flicker over the crowd, watching the corners of the rooms. As he looked around he noted a strange blur moving through the shadows, as if something was pulling at itself. A frown touched his lips for a moment, but he said nothing.

Despite that, something seemed to prickle at the back of his mind.

A small touch of unease.
 
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Neveah

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Ugh, he was no help. Neveah sighed and leaned into the embrace. Knowing there was no escape. And acceptance would only make her released faster.

“Mother, father,” Nev began, her eyes catching Kir’s attentions toward the shadows. Brow crinkled as her gaze went back to her parents. “Will the scouts…,” her father held up a hand.

“They will depart at first light in the morning. Once we get first reports, we can discuss you going out on a secondary run. With proper protection.”

It wasn’t exactly what she’d wanted but…it was something.

“Thank you,” she beamed. A strange, bald man emerged from the shadows. His movements seemed odd as he walked across the room. And if one was looking close enough, his eyes were all black.
 
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Kir

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He could see the relief somewhat on Neveah's face as her father offered a hint of a compromise.

In truth it was more than Kir had thought he would offer, but perhaps it would calm her. The girl did have a habit of...doing things her own way, perhaps a lesson she had learned that needed doing long before the King and Queen had ever hired him.

A frown touched his lips for a moment as his gaze swept once more through the crowd.

He caught sight of the strange bald man, stalking through the crowd.

It was the line that he took through the party that Kir made note of. He did not weave around the people, did not try to stop or talk to anyone. He stalked towards the Royals as though they were the only thing that existed in this world.

Slowly Kir stepped around Neveah and her parents, putting him quietly in the path of the strange man. His scent, caught in Kir's nose, felt wrong.
 
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Neveah

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A low hiss left the man’s throat as Kir stepped forward. It was enough of a sound for herself and her parents to look where Kir had stepped. With a sickening slerrp and stretching of skin, the man’s flesh tore away, revealing one of the giant skorpious creatures.

A woman screamed. Crystal broke as a glass shattered. The creature longed forward with its stinging barb and attacked. Neveah didn’t think.

She shifted into a lean, black panther, knocking her parents out of the way.
 
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Kir

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Kir moved like a blur.

As soon as the man transformed the bodyguard darted forward. He did not transform, keeping the skin of a regular man as his foe took a different shape. Hands lashed out almost instantly, catching the stinging barb that lashed out.

Hands wrapped around the malformed and shaped stinger, clutching at it's armored skin and tightening. "GET AWAY!"

He shouted, forcing the stinger back towards the creature itself.

A roar escaped his throat, echoing through the room as his feet shifted. Muscles twitched, strained, and then he forced the barb onto the creature itself. With a sudden jerk he pulled the tail forward, forcing it into the scorpions own body.
 
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Neveah

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The King and Queen stumbled back. Neveah circled around the creatures side and pounced, swiping a clawed paw across its torso. Her claws barely made a dent on the creature’s armored shell.

It screamed as it was stabbed by its own tale. Opening its mouth, webbing shot out of its maw. Nev snarled and kept back, narrowly avoiding the sticky strand.

“Neveah!” Her mother yelled sharply as they were escorted further back into the scrambling and running crowd.
 

Kir

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Kir struggled against the creature.

He was taller than most men, a match for certain trolls. Yet this thing pushed back as hard as it could. He felt his muscles flex, his whole body tense. A low growl escaped his throat, fingers tightening as he pushed the tail further.

The sound of crunching exoskeleton echoed out as he pressed the stinger further and further into the creature.

Kir knew that it's venom was likely useless against itself, but that didn't matter. All he needed was an opening, enough...he wrenched the tail to the side, pulling at the creatures toughened flesh and using it's own strength against itself.

A whining cry echoed from the creatures maw, it seemed to flex and then unbend. Then suddenly slumped against the floor as it collapsed. The stringer having torn through the length of it's body and into it's head. Kir letting out an exasperated sigh as he fell onto the floor.

"Fuck me." He said quietly, wiping at his forehead.
 
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Neveah

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Kir would suddenly find a sandpapery tongue lick up the side of his face as her black-panther form padded over. The lick would only come after she shiffed at the fallen body of the skorpious. Confirming it was, indeed, dead.

Then a gentle tap of her massive padded paw on the bodyguard's shoulder as if to see if he was okay.

A flick of her tail behind her. Most folk were evacuated now. But the palace guards were coming in to assess what happened, keeping all the guests out. Including her mother, father, and sister.
 
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Kir

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He glanced at Neveah. "I'm alright."

Kir said with a nod of his head, grimacing for a brief moment as he took a step back from the creature with a shake of his head.

"How the hell did that thing do that?" He asked, then suddenly put his hand up. "Wait, no you're a fucking...well whatever the hell you are."

His hand waved. "Can you please transform back into something that can speak again?"

Kir asked. "I don't think I can sign language with a big cat."
 
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Neveah

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The large black cat look at him with slitted eyes. Something between the sound of a purr and growl coming from her throat. The closest thing to a laugh she could make. Tail flicked again behind her.

Nostrils flared as she smelled the air.

Just in case there were others hiding.

But she didn't smell anything.

With a twitch of her whiskers the air simmered and popped and the large, black panther was now the young woman. Fully clothed, unlike when Kir shifted.

"It's a skorpious," she said. "They're not all beast. Some say they are actually part demon." She spoke quietly. Perhaps that was how it managed to steal a skin.
 
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Kir

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Kir glanced to Neveah as she shifted back to her human form. He wondered briefly if that was what he looked like. The flicker of flesh, the changing of her face. There was an uncomfortable familiarity to it all that he didn't...he didn't like.

Lips thinned, but he said nothing.

She answered his question, and his head slowly dipped in a nod. "Ah."

Kir said quietly, glancing towards the corpse on the floor. The answer was...well, unexpected, but it made sense in his mind. The stories of demons, of things beyond this world. Neus had then like any other place did. It reminded him of the tales told to children.

"I Supposed." He said quietly. "Your father may be convinced now."

Though he wasn't entirely sure that was a good thing.
 
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Neveah

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“We’ll find out in the morning,” she said grimly. She found herself and Kir quickly escorted out and back through the greenhouse. The guards wanted ALL the royals on lockdown until they did a perimeter sweep. Neveah scowled as the captain of the guard ushered them out and clearly back toward her room.

Just doing his job but it was still….frustrating.

It wasn’t until she and Kir were back behind the closed door of her room that she spoke. “I’m not sure it was out just to kill one of us. It doesn’t add up,” slipping into the closet, she closed the door mostly so she could change. But left it partially open to carry on the conversation.
 
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Kir

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Kir followed along, sticking close behind Neveah in case another one of those things appeared. A frown pulled at his lips as they stepped into her room and she began her conjecture about the creature.

"No." He agreed with a nod. "It likely was targeting someone specific, but the more it killed the better."

The King was the obvious answer. "Likely it would have started with your father, then gone for whoever else was nearby."

Which in that moment had been almost the whole royal family.

"The Shapeshifting is..." He frowned. "Concerning. I wish someone would have told me about it earlier."

Not that he blamed anyone for that, but it was a danger unlike any other.
 
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Neveah

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"I don't think we know yet what they're all capable of," she poked her head out of the closet. She had on a pair of soft, cotton sleeping shorts and crop-top. "They usually stick to the canyons. In the shadows. We know they can't venture in sunlight but...," she frowned as she crossed the room and began tugging her comforter down to the food of the bed.

"Perhaps stealing skins has enabled them to do so."

Which would NOT be good.

"I'm sure they can do more than even what we found out about tonight."

The feeling made her stomach churn. She climbed into the bad and sat cross-legged, not ready for sleep just yet. Perhaps they were connected to her sister's supposed suicide? Something no one thought about or investigated.
 
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Kir

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The idea was an...unsettling one.

Kir did not like the thought of not knowing his opponent. In Neus there were thing still hidden, tucked away and drawn to mystery. He supposed that was a fact of everywhere. Yet the largest foe back home was the other noble houses.

At least he could study them, research them. "Would the tribes know more?"

He asked Neveah.

"They seemed a bit more...in touch with things." Kir wasn't entirely sure if that was the right word for it. "If we're going to fight these monsters, we need to know more."

From politics to war, Kir seemed to switch gears in the snap of a finger. "A lot more."
 
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Neveah

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Dark, wiry haired head tilted as she considered. Then a slow nod. "The hearth-mothers would. They've been the frontline to the skorpious for so long."

Her face brightened, a hopeful spark in her golden eyes.

"Does this mean tomorrow morning if my father says no to leaving the palace you'll help me sneak out?" Dark brows waggled on her brown skin.
 
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Kir

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"No." Kir cut down the idea almost as soon as it left her tongue.

He wanted to know more, but he also wasn't out looking to get himself, or her, killed. They needed to do this carefully. "They just sent someone..."

Kir trailed off, shaking his head.

"Something." He corrected. "To kill you and your family. You think the best course of action is to run away from all the soldiers and guards?"

The Werebear shook his head. "We need to convince your father what the right thing is to do. Not run away like petulant children."
 
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