Open Chronicles The Sea-Blue

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Dune

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Down the streets painted in heavenly blue and white, festive energy and parades had most people flocking the streets as they received the returning warbands in roaring glee. Facilities like coffeehouses had free menus for the day, stalls at the caravanserai for the night, free lodging for travellers and the bathhouse had free entry until sundown. Still, they could not compete for attention with the main event as the Mulay Danush walked in his army as petals of flowers rained down from the sky.


In the Sea-Blue Bathhouse.

Why won't you see him?
Dune lounged on a large flat platform with her back facing the massive skylight above her, only wearing minimal clothing that permitted getting wet. She didn't look much like Danush's sister without her royal garb and makeup.
Nah, he won't miss her sight from the palace.


The Sea-Blue bathhouse was a partitioned building with two elongated pool rooms segregated by sex for privacy. Covered in multicoloured but overwhelmingly blue tiles with daisy-like flower ornaments and statues of loons, ibises and cattle, they appeared more extravagant than what is usually permissible for commoners.
But this was an ancient facility.
The spa between both pool rooms was for all, possessing many sitting areas and shallow pools lined in natural rock, some deeper than others; some of the water was hot, the other icy cold.
Right in front of the spa though, past an arch was the sunbathing room where Dune lounged. It was a spacious, octagonal space with seating areas in each alcove. In the middle was a large circular platform, illuminated brightly by the sun.
 

Ithacanus Ulyees

Toad out of Water
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"Eeeegh!" he squeals aloud, when his toes dip into something sticky. A shudder of horror runs through him, before he finally lifts his foot up for a wrinkle-nosed sniff.

Mmmnh. Some kind of food drippings from an unaware creature. Humans could be icky. And indeed there were a lot of humans today. Marching, parading, shouting about, strewing perfectly fine petals as ground decoration, only to be poetically swept away in the breeze like sand.

"I only wanted some dates and a new silver spoon." he says dejectedly, foot back down and head hung low, gaining only the attention of an aghast toddler at its mother's hand. He blinks broadly.

Little humans with their little scary eyes. Stop staring at me!

He limps away, toes curled backwards and lip crinkled, and turns down a side street, pausing a moment to wash his toes in a puddle of fresh-ish water with a make-do frown. As he exits the street, he pops out onto a broad and busy promenade, a vast blue building rising mightily and beautifully, like a crashing wave. His eyes widen that much more, and he pushes his large pan-shaped hat back for a better view despite the glare.

On the breeze, water, actual water, hit his nose, sweet and sultry. Beckoning like bread to a Kaliti plowman. An imported apple to a Ragash deacon. Fresh water to an amphibian that'd spent the last few days in want of a bath.

I'll let my bladestick and harpoon be an issue later!


He looks about, and in safely crossing the promenade, scales the steps. He checks his purse, expecting a little sign and big man with a little bucket for coins and monies, or some such holdback. To his shock, there are none, and the doors are cracked open two fingers to beckon further. He may salivate from joy, once he's thoroughly rehydrated.

Puttering in through the big heavy door, and finding a sideroom for stowing about one's things, he excitedly strips to the teeny linen clout he wears to keep the humans happy, and marches for the pools in the middle.

"Oh, yes indeedy!"

He slips into one that's a bit too chilly for his tastes with a noisy sigh, for he can't complain. He sinks to his nose to check the quality of the water, then remains there, eyes squinted happily.

Dune
 

Dune

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» This heat... « She muttered turning around belly up, her hand reaching across her face and extending out, blocking the light from hitting her face.

Gentle little sticky feet plip plops made her rise to see what made that curious sound. A frog-man it was, and he settled into the first pond he saw.
It would only be polite to greet him.
And a return to water sounded like a great idea as her skin was again as dry as the surface of the desert.

» How goes, I reckon there's not much interest for the spectacle outside. «

Ithacanus Ulyees
 

Aimsir Dockish

Setting sail to an island near you!
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14 days.

That was how long they had been marching.

Ever since the new Emperor had taken over, the last year of his life had been hell. Nothing but praying to Molthal Gods, trekking through seemingly horizonless desert, and being paid less, and less, and less.

This previous mission had been no different. Thankfully, the orders issued by the ruler of the region had some sense; push back a group of tribes that had been pillaging the surrounding villages. They'd gotten too used to petty political battles, the 'God-Emperor' helplessly needing to flex his influence and power. All Aimsir needed to do was keep the soldiers cool, and manage their water supply. He was lucky that he had to do such little fighting, but blessed the gods that he was provided with ample training for when it was needed. Most of his time was spent reading up on the area's languages, as he was not familiar with Kaliti, Kel or any of the other strange and varied tongues he had come across during his long campaign.

But, at last, they had arrived back at Jaleyanaa, where the festivities had already begun. Banners of blue and white were such a beautiful reprieve from the oppressive red and yellow that often adorned their armour. People cheered, ribbons flying from building to building. Musicians sat on steps, blowing horns and strumming great, tall lutes that awkwardly hung from their shoulders.

"Shikshir, there's a bathhouse over there, think we can leave the march?" He turned, speaking to his bunkmate. Shikshir was a tall, bronzed warrior, allocated many years ago to act as cultural guidance for Aimsir, but they soon became close friends.

"Of course brother! Any excuse to get the stench off, hey!" He guffawed and slapped Aimsir on the back. It was true, neither of them had washed in weeks, and they smelt like it.

They wandered into the shop front, the smell of hot steam travelled delightfully from the back of the store. It was gorgeous, with incredibly bright blues, with flowers ornamenting the brickwork. It was rare to see such beautiful architecture anywhere else in the great, empty expanse that were the dunes. They stripped themselves of their armour and into small, towel like undergarments to protect their honour.

They both lumbered into the middle section, allowed for all, and noticed a piercing beauty, along with a small creature pooled in the middle.

"Excuse us." He said, politely, as they sank themselves into the relaxing, warm bath. Though the gods could be cruel, this was a rare pleasure, that almost made the blisters and cuts on his feet worth it.

"Nice royal welcome, huh Kihaar?"
Shik asked Aimsir. He called him Kihaar, as that was Kaliti for a sailor, or someone who worked on the boats.

"Nice change. Hey-" He turned to face the woman sitting across. "They wouldn't happen to do drinks here, would they?" He asked.
 

Dune

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It appeared that the calming waters had subjugated the frogman to its relaxing properties. Despite the awkward moment, Dune shrugged and her eyes had passed toward the two new arrivals, one more fresh than the other, but both still rugged.
» I believe you have then gotten lost, « chuckled the miss before shrugging and rubbing her cheek against her shoulder. » If you wanted drinks, you should have visited the Green Guzu*, But Ah-I believe that the water has already taken you in. I reckon the prices will go tenfold tomorrow to make a profit of all the visitors taking use of the free lodging«

Not only as the local of the grand blue city, but the sister of Jaleyaanan's sovereign, Mulay Danush. Dune knew much of the inner workings of the merchants and the endless efforts of the Jaleyaanan enterprise.

She curiously gazed at the two, as if beckoning them to present themselves to her. It was only proper, right?



* A drinking cup or glass
Aimsir Dockish Ithacanus Ulyees
 

Aimsir Dockish

Setting sail to an island near you!
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"Bloody hell..." He was really looking forward to a cool drink. It was a laboured task to create rain so far in the desert, and it wasn't exactly a cool ale. Aimsir had heard rumours of the capital having bathhouses larger than a city-square, with great fountains spewing endless wine. Doesn't sound like something he could afford.

"Be nice to sleep on somethin' other than sand" He rolled his eyes and sunk his shoulders in the water.

"Sorry about Kihaar, takes a few more years to get used to the sores, ey!"
He laughed. Indeed, the sores were as raw as they were numerous.

"But without him, we'd dry up like a couple 'a beatles, isn't that right?" He gave an ear-to-ear smile to the vision sitting across from them, rummaging his hand through Aimsir's hair. He was still a child in Shikshir's eyes, and would likely stay that way.

"Get off- sorry, we're forgettin' our manners" His eyes widened looking at Shikshir.

"I am Aimsir. You are?" He asked, politely.



Ithacanus Ulyees Dune
 

Dune

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She chuckled at the two. Not often does she meet with the aloofness of the courtless folk. It's easy to forget what whimsicalities you find in hardship.
» My name is Dune, I'm local to here.«
Her hand waved around to accentuate her words before she leaned back on the hot slab of stone, looking up at the bright skylight.

One could've mistaken her for a serpent basking in the sunlight at this rate.
 

Ithacanus Ulyees

Toad out of Water
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The sudden, wonderful coolness of the water had brought Ithacanus' heart rate down to a snail's crawl, and a little spin of somewhat dangerous drowsiness with the lack of sunlight hitting him. It was the only downside of a bathhouse. They rarely had pools in direct light, which lent it's warmth to any skin above the water and prevented such hard drops. Still, he had enough experience- and good teaching from his mother -to not linger fully submerged for too long in this sort of water.

He only noticed he had been addressed at all once he had walked over to the edge and began slowly extracting himself from the pool, if he had discerned the look on the young Human's face correctly. But he didn't really have time to open his mouth when two others came in, stinking, air tasting of sweat and armour and soldiery just like the rest of them outside. One spoke of dried beetles, another spoke of manners and his name.

"I am Aimsir. You are?"

They'll have to drain that water, or boil it. Definitely scrub the pool with lye. Eegh.

Sitting on the side of the pool, feet dangling in the water and heart rate rising mildly, he turns to look at the trio in the neighbouring pool, expression something between wide-eyed neutrality, and intrigue.

»My name is Dune, I'm local to here.«

He lets out a friendly little croak from the very back of his nasal passages, the skin on his neck stretching with the bubble of noise, and rolls over onto his stomach to prop himself up on his elbows, toes still in the pool.

"Ithacanus Ulyees tentatively at your service! I am from the river wetlands very far South of here."

I hope you three aren't mean like the last Humans I told. I'm not done bathing and I don't want to leave yet.

Dune Aimsir Dockish
 
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