Fable - Ask Six Thousand Years and a Overnight Story

A roleplay which may be open to join but you must ask the creator first


Character Biography
Xanthe never dreamed when she was put under the hunter’s spells. Whenever she would wake up, which was whenever the hunters wanted her to, she always felt a sense of longing. It would have been nice if she could have dreamed while being asleep. Suntory Market couldn’t even let the captured fae have that one small reprieve.

The brightly colored tents of blue and orange and yellow were already up. Flag poles were already implanted deep into the ground, flags being raised high above the tents. Within the iron cage, Xanthe could look around and see the outside world for a few minutes. More often than not, her and other fae would be chained inside a tent, unable to see the grass or sky unless a customer or worker opened the heavy burlap tent flap.

The field was flat with short grass, not too many trees or mountains on the horizon. When she looked to the left, she could see the silhouette of a town, a dull gray against the bright blue of the sky. There were few clouds and the sun was bright. Having been a part of Suntory Market for as long as she could remember, she knew that they were still in Espressa, not let crossing over into Liadin. It was summer, by fall they would be by the Falwood, by winter they would have traveled towards Elbion, and then by spring they would be crossing over to Amol-Kalit. It was a odd year, and next year they would visit places like Maraan, Oban and Dornoch.

A soft breeze blew through the camp and Xanthe was quiet as she saw one of the hunters, Reika, come over to her cage. This woman was one of the worst, but not because she was overtly cruel. It was because she was silent the entire time and it was silence that unnerved Xanthe the most. Whatever it was that Reika was thinking, Xanthe couldn’t guess. She was docile as she saw the cuffs in her hands.

Suntory Market was smart. They knew iron affected fae but also understood it burned them. If one behaved then their cuffs would mostly be made out of twine, yet within the twine would be thin tendrils of iron embedded throughout. Nothing that would be punishing for the fae, but strong enough to keep them from using their magic and escaping. Not that Xanthe had any sort of magic to help her escape. She was the piggy bank, the owner’s golden prize.

The cage opened and Reika placed the cuffs over Xanthe’s small, frail wrists and lifted her up just enough so that her feet wouldn’t hit the iron bars. Outside from the cage, Xanthe felt immensely better, as if the cage was somehow suffocating her without even having to touch her skin. She followed after Reika and was led into a tent, a different tent than last time. It had red and yellow and orange stripes, a bright green flag on top that was weakly waving in the wind.

Reika pushed Xanthe inside the tent and the deathly pale fae stumbled inside. She caught herself just in time and looking behind herself at Reika, saw the flap close and put the fae into darkness.

“Hello?” Xanthe ventured, using common tongue first. She had picked up a bit of Iza from those that used it, but using iza was grounds for punishment in Suntory Market. And while there was no hunter in the tent with them currently, she knew they were swarming all around them outside. All it took was one whisper of Iza around someone with good hearing and a knack for violence and… well, Xanthe didn’t like thinking about that.
Ethir did not need iron to be restrained. Her keeper Orion knew her true name, and not only that, but without him, she would lose her beautiful face and body. But her clothes were still woven with fine threads of iron and her jewelry was all iron, preventing her from using any magic or escaping; not that she had ever really tried to.

Ethir glanced up when her tent flap opened, letting in a little bit of light. She immediately ducked her head, even as Orion walked in. She kept her head down and subconsciously scratched at the scar that stretched across the left side of her face. Orion walked towards her in the darkness before kneeling in front of where she sat cross-legged on her mat. "Hello, treasure," he said, speaking in Iza. Ethir was not allowed to speak her native tongue but Orion could do whatever he pleased.

He lifted a hand to her ugly face and traced her scar with a lover's caress. As his fingers moved, Ethir could feel her skin shift, and her lengthen, and she knew Orion had made her beautiful. A bit of relief trickled down her spine but it didn't make her feel much better as Orion brought his other hand to his face and slid it along her cheek and into her hair, resting on the back of her head. He lifted her chin with his thumb, forcing her to look up at him. His face was shadowed and Ethir could not read his expression but she had done this enough times to know that his eyes were wandering, appreciating his work.

Before he could lean in this time though, there was a shout from outside. Ethir felt rather than saw Orion turn his head to the tent flap which fluttered in the wind. He turned back to her and rose to his feet, now looking down at her. "Get dressed," he said, leaving her alone in the tent.

She sat there for only a moment longer before she slipped into a thin orange tulle dress. When she walked out into the market, everyone was finishing setting up, and many heads turned her way. As far as everyone else knew, she looked like this all of the time.

Her two guards standing outside her tent glanced at her and then immediately looked away, their muscles tensing. Ethir slowly moved her hazel gaze across the market. She watched as a woman she knew to be Reika escort Xanthe into another tent. The Fae made any money that the market could not make from their other unsavory practices, so to say the Suntory market was well off was an understatement.
Xanthe’s golden eyes widened as she saw the fae inside the tent. It had to be one that was recently hunted. She had seen them before although she had never been in a tent with one. She looked behind her as if expecting a hunter to come in right then and there to punish them both for the fae speaking Iza.

Shh,” She held a finger to her lips, looking back over her shoulder once more before slowly stepping over to the fae. She knelt down on her knees, still a good distance away from the bedraggled… oh, what was it? A puca? A sidhe? A pixie? A sprite? Xanthe had no clue but she supposed that didn’t matter. “You” one of the first words she had learned in Iza, but it sounded strange coming from her mouth. “You no Iza. They get mad and kill.” She used her bound together hands to gesture outside, hoping the fae understood. Xanthe frowned.

I can’t help you. Once you’re here you can’t leave. You only leave when you’re not useful.” She said in common, looking over her shoulder once again, still waiting for a hunter to appear.

That she couldn't recognize the creature before her was through no fault of her own. Woodland Fae were rare, fragile things. The age that clung to this one by means of mottled mosses and lichens, faded earthy complexion, and litany of creases and crags was about the only apparent thing she might be able to tell. Wrinkles of strained understanding pinched the red of its eyes.

<<No Iza?>> it replied with a frown and wariness pressing into the lines of its expression. Its gaze followed the path of her own to the shadows drifting about beyond the tent flaps, cast like puppets in the pale light of morning.

"What..." it began, tongue deftly testing the use of common, "what is this place? Why can't I leave? They took me..." its frail hands trembled as the fae slumped back down into the shadows, "my tree. They destroyed it. Why?"
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Xanthe brightened at the use of common, the prickles of anxiety beginning to ebb for just a moment. Out of pity, she took the old and fragile fae’s hands into her own. They felt cold, like ice, the papery skin doing little to hide the chill. She rubbed one hand between hers, although awkwardly with her wrists tight together.

Maybe we can plant a new tree for you, they feed us a lot of fruit. We can plant you a apple tree.” Xanthe whispered, not understanding the importance of the fae’s tree being destroyed. “This place is Suntory Market. It’ll be your new home.” She didn’t smile, these words far less comforting than her previous ones. For all she knew, the fate of this fae was nothing but death the moment they could extract the magic out of him. “We’ll be here for awhile. Summer time is always good for business.

Further down the lane, in a small, shimmering black tent, Dedra was holding the hands of a crying customer.
"I've looked for my son everywhere," the woman sobbed, wiping her eyes. "But no one knows where he is. Please, you have to find him! He's the only one who..." She shuddered, holding back more tears.

Dedra looked down at the tarot cards before her, spelling out a horrible marriage for profit, a family wealthy with money and miseries alike.

He's the only one who loves me.

The fae clenched her jaw as visions swam before her eyes, a myriad of possible solutions. The boy, safe in the back of an inn, trying to hide the purple bruise on his jaw that his father gave him. The elderly innkeeper, furrowing his brow with concern and offering him a quiet room upstairs.

The fae woman sighed. If Dedra tried to help, she wouldn't be able to eat today.
Instead, she glanced towards the entrance of the tent. There stood her handler, Perrault, his vibrant blue beard stark against his red hood. He caught her eye and quietly shook his head. Dedra's heart sank.

"I am sorry," she said, her voice so soft that the other woman had to lean towards her to listen. "Your son will not survive."

The woman's eyes bulged, tears welling up once more. "No! Please! I was told you can save him!" She thrust a bag, swollen with gold coin, onto the table, scattering the tarot cards.

Dedra glanced towards the entrance again. Perrault shook his head once more. Dedra gulped.
"I cannot. Not with coin alone. Pulling the threads of fate requires sacrifice. It must be something dear to you." Dedra stared at the floor, unable to look at the woman's horrified expression.

"...My ring!" the woman pushed a heavy diamond ring, into Dedra's palm. Dedra stared at it. More visions leapt into her mind, unbidden. The woman's husband, enraged, slapping her so hard she falls down the stairs. "Where is my ring? Traitorous little harlot!" The servants whispering and smirking behind their hands. The woman staring out the window of a castle's jail, wondering if she'd ever see her son again...

"I shall do what I can." Dedra closed her fist around the ring and cast a glamour. Flickers of light, soft chimes in the background, the whole works. It left her tired, and only able to pull one thread of luck, but Perrault insisted that she put on a show for the customers to make it more believable and awe-inspiring. Dedra decided to pull on the woman's luck. She saw it in her mind's eye, turning from a tarnished red to a gleaming silver.

"I see your son alive now, and safe, in an inn some miles away. I cannot see the name of the inn, but I see the innkeeper is a kind older man who is sheltering your boy. Do not lose hope," she recited. Dedra tried to not let her guilt show as the woman embraced her, thanking her repeatedly.

As soon as the customer left, Perrault strolled into the tent and patted Dedra on the head. "Good girl," he murmured. "You're a natural." He swiftly took the bag of gold and ring, then gestured outside. "I have to have a talk with one of your kind. Be a dear and get us some lunch, would you?"

Dedra froze. "By myself?"

A slow smile crossed Perrault's face. It was almost paternal. "Is there any reason I shouldn't trust you?"
Dedra shook her head.

"Smart lass. Hurry along and it may still be warm," Perrault gestured her away with a chuckle. Dedra ducked outside, ignoring the stares of the guards around her and the bubble of worry in the pit of her stomach. It wasn't like she could run away, anyhow. She wore gilded iron bracelets like many of the other fae here, and the ribbon around her neck guaranteed she couldn't cry out for help. As she squinted into the sunlight, trying to find the food stalls, she thought she saw a mass of tangled red threads following a beautiful fae woman in an orange dress. Danger! Her intuition whispered. Save her! But she shouldn't keep Perrault waiting-

The crying noblewoman's face flickered in front of her vision.

I'll just follow her for a few minutes, Dedra thought, pushing down the guilt. It's probably nothing important, right?
Reika was the sort of hunter who never liked to linger long in the Suntory Market. Only the fae that had been there for years would know her for her appearances were brief. Of course, many fae knew Reika purely because she was one who lived for the hunt.

The fae she brought in never lasted long. They were always used for something and as their bodies were so battered the Market could do little in keeping them around and instead had to use them for product for their magic died out. She was merciless and frightening, and yet eerily calm. Even as she approached Dedra from behind.

Despite her gear on her, Reika made no sound. A simple spell for the mages in Elbion but one that required her to take a certain pill made out of pixie dust and Deva-whatever. She didn’t care what part of the fae they had to use, as long as the pill worked.

“Where do you think you’re going, @Dedra?” She hated speaking to the fae. It was the worst part of being in the camp. She’d rather just turn them all into ash now. If all the fae could just disappear then she could finally be free of this burden. “Trying to sneak away and conspire with…” She paused, looking at the back of Ethir. Which one was that again? Oh. Right. The pretty one.

Reika felt her lip pull up in irritation as she scowled at the two fae before her. These two fae were unfortunately the sort she couldn’t use her “judgement” on. Perrault and Orion were two men that Reika found outranked her, time and time again. And all they did was use this status to be disgusting with these fae as if they were actually women.

Reika could never.

“Both of you. Over here. Now. Or else I’ll be telling them of your suspicious activity.” The hunter threatened.

Ethir Mistfall
Ethir stilled, a shiver trickling down her spine as if someone was watching her. She turned around and sure enough, met the eyes of a Fae in green silks, a mysterious air about her. She tilted her head at her and was about to say something when Reika appeared behind the woman in green. Ethir raised an arched eyebrow at the hunter, and paused only a moment before turning and walking towards the hunter and Dedra

"Suspicious activity?" she drawled in the common tongue, her voice light and smooth like a stream curving around rocks. "The only suspicious activity is Dedra following me," she said. Despite her words, there was no accusation in her tone. Reika seemed to have a personal vendetta against Ethir and Ethir suspected it was because of the 'special treatment' Orion gave her.

The summer sun rose steadily in the sky and it cast Ethir in a peach glow which caught the eyes of others moving around the camp.
Xanthe brightened at the use of common, the prickles of anxiety beginning to ebb for just a moment. Out of pity, she took the old and fragile fae’s hands into her own. They felt cold, like ice, the papery skin doing little to hide the chill. She rubbed one hand between hers, although awkwardly with her wrists tight together.

Maybe we can plant a new tree for you, they feed us a lot of fruit. We can plant you a apple tree.” Xanthe whispered, not understanding the importance of the fae’s tree being destroyed. “This place is Suntory Market. It’ll be your new home.” She didn’t smile, these words far less comforting than her previous ones. For all she knew, the fate of this fae was nothing but death the moment they could extract the magic out of him. “We’ll be here for awhile. Summer time is always good for business.


"Sweet fae," the elder replied with a despondent sigh and a shake of its head, "one does not simply plant a new heart seed."

That wasn't how things worked. It watched her for several moments, listening with a keen crimson gaze that shifted eventually to darkened confusion. Brow furrowed over simmering concern, it glanced down to her shackled hands while she attempted to warm his own. A kind gesture, but perhaps a lost cause.

"Suntory Market..." the elder murmured, "I have never heard of this. What do you mean summer is always good for business? Are we in the lands of the Summer Court?" The inflexion of anxiousness couldn't be missed as those red eyes then glanced around. Summer Court was no place for lesser fae - they had heard the stories and they meant not to ever visit such horrors.
"You would do this? To your own kind? Your own court?"

"Five... Six... Six and two silvers..."

"I believe we agreed upon ten and five silvers," Ianthe corrected the man who had the unfortunate luck of being blessed with a nose that looked as though it would fit better on the face of a tucan. He glanced up from where he had been counting out the coins onto the thick slab of his book. How he could even read the scrawl that apparently passed for writing was beyond her but then Ianthe was barely literate herself. She'd never had a need to read. Still, she liked to feel as though she could judge the man. She was a Smuggler and he was just a clerk and - even better - she was good. After all, who was better to hunt the fae than a fae? Clearly the man knew it for he ground his teeth some and cast a dark look over at her prize. He wanted to debate her price. She could see it in the way he wet his lips and the sweat budded on his brow. The kelpie leaned her elbows on the table and brought her face uncomfortably close to his whilst he was distracted, making him recoil and clutch some bit of iron beneath the table he thought she could not sense when he turned back to face her.

"I can always take him away again. No doubt he'll spin enough straw into gold in one day to cover the ten I've agreed to from your boss," her voice was a haunting melody the likes of which seafarers feared. Beak-nose scowled. She almost wanted him to debate it.

Ianthe's lips kicked up at the corners in satisfaction as he dumped four more fat golden pieces into her stack.

"You traitorous bitch," the gnome spat again as some of beak-noses friends came to clamp him in iron chains. Ianthe sniffed and looked down at the smear on her boots.

"Maybe I should start charging you a cleaning fee."

The guards glanced up at her from beneath their hoods. Maybe she'd pushed it a bit too far.

Swiping the coins off the counter and making them vanish amongst her person she doffed two fingers to the men of the tent and made her exit with a cheerful whistle. Coin in hand now she could buy what she wanted for her next target.
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Heart seed? She had never had heart fruit before. Maybe that was why they couldn’t plant another.

Summer Court?Xanthe’s pale brows furrowed together. She was aware that all the fae brought had some sort of affiliation. She thought about where it was that the Market seemed to get a influx of fae from Summer, but she couldn’t come up with anything that she was sure of. “No, the season.” She said instead of trying to answer his question. “Summer is good because there’s no rain, so every day people come to see us. It’s better when the humans and elves come to see us. When it’s slow the hunters get bored.”

She kept working at the cold hands. At this rate, her hands would get a chill as well. What was wrong with this fae? Was it because he was so old?

Can you do something special? Do you have pretty magic? Or useful magic?

Dedra jumped a foot in the air at Reika's words. Why couldn't my gift be useful and predict when that awful woman would show up? She'd heard the rumors about Reika, seen the bruised, limping, crying fae she'd drag in.

"She's a brute. I've told our overseers that multiple times, but apparently she's too good at tracking down potential employees." Perrault would sigh, shaking his head in disapproval. "I'm glad you're with me, my star. People do not pay to see miserable wretches. They want happiness, beauty, wonder." He'd always pause to smile at her. "Exactly what you provide."

Dedra remembered feeling pleased by his compliments, once.

So when Reika threatened to bring her back to Bluebeard, Dedra felt her heart sink all the way to her toes.

"Suspicious activity? The only suspicious activity is Dedra following me."

Dedra's grey-green eyes glanced at Ethir. The fae woman was radiant in the sunlight. She looked like a queen. She spoke like a queen. She dares to talk to Reika like that? How?! Orion must give her special treatment. I guess beauty has its benefits.

Dedra decided that she, too, would benefit...by slowly tiptoeing behind Ethir, away from Reika.
"No rain..." fretted the fae, pulling his hands away from the other with a look of abject horror at the thought, "So it is to be a slow and agonizing death then...no rain..."

But in such a bleak moment the other's words somehow also brought forth pity. Did she truly not know of its kind? "My magic died with my heartseed. There is nothing ... nothing I can do ... surely you know this?"
He had no magic? Xanthe frowned deeply, shoulders slumping in defeat. He wasn’t useful. Why he was in this tent was beyond Xanthe’s comprehension, but it didn’t matter the reason. He was going to die. Probably when everyone was finished setting up.

I’m sorry.” Xanthe whispered, apologizing for the rain and the fact that she knew nothing. Even apologizing for the fact that he would be dead soon and she didn’t have the guts to say it. “I can get you some water.” Or at least she thought she could. She’d need to sneak around but in the busy atmosphere going on outside she felt confident enough she could sneak around.

Water will make you feel a little better, won’t it?” She said, beginning to stand up and releasing the old, withered fae. At least before he died he could have some relief. That would be good enough, wouldn’t it?

  • Cthuulove
Reactions: Dedra
Reika’s almond shaped eyes narrowed further, her dark brows pulling down as she glared at both of the fae before her— or rather one fae while the other hid behind her like a child would to its mother. She huffed out a harsh, incredulous laugh.

“You hide behind her while she sells you out?” Reika said, her unforgiving gaze resting on Dedra before flicking over to Ethir. “Your kind knows nothing about loyalty.” It was a statement, even if it seemed it should have been phrased as a question. Like animals, no worse than animals. They were like bugs, moving and speaking only because instinct told them to do so.

How could such mindless things ever be gifted with such magic when they couldn’t even have a heart or soul?

“Start moving back to your tents!” Reika barked at them, pulling out a dagger to show she meant business. If either of them decided to reject her orders, she’d give them a reminder that they weren’t in charge. And right now, Orion and Perrault weren’t around to protect them. “Get on, move, move, move.” The hunter started moving forward, just as Ianthe was coming out from the tent and pushed into her.

“Out of my way!” She recognized the smuggler. Another traitor. Like all fae, bugs just living for their best interest.

Ethir Mistfall Ianthe
A terrible mistake on Reika's part.

Ianthe's hand whipped out to grab the other hunter by the front of the shirt before she could pass her by entirely and all but hurled her off her feet. This was not a fae shackled or weakened by iron shavings in her food and the Kelpies were some of the most physically strong amongst them. A point Ianthe intended on making very clear to the human.

They stood toe to toe as Ianthe peeled back her lips from her teeth and gave a low, warning snarl.

"Watch where you're going."
A wretched and small hand reached out from under Ianthe's cloak and snatched at Reika's leg.
Wrongtoe the Goblin had been hiding there away from the eyes of the Humans and Elves of the Market. There they felt safe, Ianthe was safe. Now Ianthe was angry and so Wrongtoe pulled themselves out of the shadow of Ianthe's cloak, it's sharp teeth glistened under its blood red cap. Large eyes lidded from the harsh light of day it drew close and snapped at Reika's juicy leg flesh hoping to get a bite but fell short.

The snap could be heard followed by a comical tumble as Wrongtoe fell from the shadow holding them up and landed on the ground between the two women. Halberd on their lap they sat looking up at them all and grinning wildly between outrageously large ears that might not seem out of place on a bat or elephant.

"Goom-gabba!" They said, snarling at Reika and trying to look menacing as they stood to their full height of three feet and brandished their weapon in what they certainly wanted to be a threatening manner.
The silent breath of the pitiful fae echoed soft and dull in the tent, a precursor to a foreseen death rattle perhaps. As it sunk back the shadows greeted it with a cold embrace, filling in the elder's features and casting a gaunt appearance that so closely resembled a corpse it might've seemed the fae had already given up.

"Water... yes, yes water will do nicely..."

Tempered by their impending end, the woodland fae closed its eyes and wrapped its arms around itself. Somewhere beyond their tent the sounds of a scuffle echoed in. The old fae flinched.

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"Um...excuse me..." Dedra poked her head around Ethir's back. "I, uh, need to get lunch for Master Perrault..."
Her eyes widened as soon as she caught sight of Ianthe and the goblin.
She didn't need divination to see the ensuing chaos.
"Yes, Miss Reika! We shall happily move right away!" She looped an arm through Ethir's arm and started to a tent - any tent. Reika didn't specify which one, and Dedra had a feeling that the human would soon be too distracted to care.

Reika grinned at Ianthe, hardly looking bothered despite the way her thoughts screamed at her in harsh refusal. She seemed even less bothered than when the bug-eyed goblin tried to grab her leg and brandished its little stick at her. She kept herself from kicking it’s little ugly face and sending the goblin onto the other side of the market.

“Hands off, Blue,” Reika said, leaning her face in instead of away. “Before you’re missing your fingers.” It was the only warning she would give, so certain was Reika of her own capabilities— and more than anything else, her short sword and dagger made of iron to cut down any fae in her way. Her free hand went up, the gauntlet she wore catching the sunlight. Reika’s armored hand went to grab Ianthe’s wrist.

Ianthe Wrongtoe
Ianthe was no different to other fae when it came to the weaknesses of iron; it would burn her skin and could kill her if it was buried inside her chest. But unlike most other fae, the kelpies of the Night Court were surrounded by it every day of their lives. It was in these conditions they were reared, taught how to fight, and honed into the lethal deadly weapons they were famed to be. A pretty little accessory was hardly enough to have her flinching away.

In fact she let Reika's hand clasp her wrist, let the iron gauntlet press her skin where it hissed and steamed, and gripped the woman tighter by the collar and bringing their faces to the point their noses almost touched.

"Now, now. Don't go promising a good time when you can't deliver, pig-skin."

With that, Ianthe dropped her to the floor and turned to walk away...
Xanthe had stood up, slowly tiptoeing towards the opening of the tent but was shocked when others entered it.

Oh!” A sound of surprise. “Oh.” A sound of defeat. She wouldn’t be able to sneak out now with so many eyes on her. Especially not the ones who had personal handlers. Xanthe was lucky in that regard, she supposed. She just had to bleed for the Market once a day and really, that was lucky! Much better than getting your wings ripped out or…


What is going on outside?” She asked the two fae. And who was making those weird sounds?

Aelas Dedra Ethir
Reika had never dealt with a kelpie before, had no idea of their physical might. Yet she wasn’t so green by Ianthe’s bravado that she didn’t notice the sear and sizzle of skin. She was resisting it now, but this was just a gauntlet. This was just a woman gripping another— no, they were scum.

She shouldn’t even consider them to be anything mortal-like, much less human-like. That was always the first mistake mortals made when encountering fae.

Her pride wouldn’t let her be still. Her pride refused to let Ianthe and the bug-eyed goblin walk away. With quiet determination, Reika used her entire body and all the force she could muster to shove Ianthe back, using her shoulder as the source of impact.

Reika had never believed in commenting on a woman’s weight, but now she did it in the back of her mind. It felt like hitting a brick wall! She was certain she had dislocated her shoulder at the very least.

Ianthe Wrongtoe