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The old ways

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1 The old ways on Sun Jun 24, 2018 11:19 am

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“May the prophet smile on you.” It was the same greeting everyone gave each other as they passed on their daily tasks. A polite nod, and then on your way. It was the same in countless villages across the continent, why grow attached to someone who may not even be there in a week? Thanks were always given to the prophet, to the one who saved their ancestors generations ago when the gods had had enough of humanity and their over confidence and arrogance. The prophet had given them wise choices, solutions that had saved many, even as millions perished. The prophet’s name had been lost long ago, but that didn’t stop humans thanking them in their daily lives. Convenient how they forgot their past mistakes, even with the great beast always out there reminding them that their punishment was never over.
The great beast was different depending on who you asked, but it’s mission was always the same; keep the population small. Too much growth, and the humans would reach for the stars again and only end up scorching what was left of their world. The sad truth of the situation, was that humans were not the only ones being punished. After the great culling over a thousand years ago, a new race had revealed itself; the elves. The elves remembered. The elves would never forget what humanity had cost everyone. Every creature suffered the curse without judgement.

Fallon was the son of the chief of their village. He wasn’t afforded any special treatment because of this, if anything he was worked harder, like his father had to prove his genes were worthy of continuing his bloodline. Over the generations, many people had shown what they called ‘gifts from the prophet’ in the form of enhanced abilities, such as speed and strength of even simply being a better hunter when it was dark. It was such abilities that ensured their village didn’t starve. This was part of the reason Fallon was pushed so hard; he showed no sign of a gift. Who would want to give their daughter for union to someone still under the curse of the gods? Fallon would only lead their people if he proved himself worthy of such a burden. The problem with this... was Fallon didn’t want the burden. He wanted to find freedom for his people from the curse, he wanted to make the old gods understand that they were not their ancestors, they shouldn’t be punished for something they didn’t do.

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31 Re: The old ways on Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:58 pm

Again, Raven had to bite her tongue. Doing something her father would do was not an ideal she wished to live by. For as long as she could remember, Erath had simply been her king, never her father. At least, not in the way he was to Lily. “Walk.” She instructed Odin, pushing him on ahead of her as the king and his own bodyguards walked in the opposite direction, Fallon already in chains of a strange glowing blue light.

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32 Re: The old ways on Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:13 pm

"You've got to be joking." Odin snapped. He knew the moment he arrived in the village he would be put to death. He was charged with watching over the prince and everything he'd done worked against that. 

"Tell me, boy. Why does your father let the prince do the hunting? Is there no one else?" Erath asked.

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33 Re: The old ways on Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:25 pm

“Do I look like I’m joking, bear?” Raven asked with a snort, giving him another shove. “I think we’ve already proven You can’t beat me, so just walk.”

“What makes you think I’m a prince?” Fallon asked evasively.

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34 Re: The old ways on Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:53 pm

"You're a woman. I am not supposed to try and hurt you." Odin muttered though he did start walking slowly.

"Your kinsman. His response to what was happening. If you two were normal friends, he would have been more worried about his own hide." The king said simply.

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35 Re: The old ways on Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:00 pm

The words that left Odin’s mouth could not have been more alien to Raven. She halted him by jabbing the curve of her bow against the back of the much larger man’s knees, sending him to the ground once more. “You mean to tell me you patronise your females?” She asked as she looked down at him. “Why would you fight any less fiercely, simply because I was a woman?”

Fallon actually gave a little snort of laughter. “Is that how it is for elves, you only worry for your own backsides unless social standing says otherwise?” He asked.

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36 Re: The old ways on Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:05 am

It would not be hard for Raven to tell that Odin was doing everything in his power to hold his temper. That was not something that came easy to him. "Fuck off, elf. You and your kind know nothing."

The king smiled at Fallon, though it was filled with darkness and cruelty. "Why would it be any other way?"

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37 Re: The old ways on Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:10 am

“I see, and you humans and your patriarchy know everything?” Raven shot back, giving him a jab with the tip of her bow. 

Fallon saw the darkness in the elf king’s otherwise beautiful face, though still smiled at him. “I guess that’s why humans don’t live as long; we foolishly forge friendships instead of keeping slaves.”

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38 Re: The old ways on Mon Jul 09, 2018 2:47 pm

Odin kept still, glaring at the ground. "We know how to treat our females." Finally he got to his feet and turned back to her. "If you keep jabbing me with that, I'm going to break it." He growled a warning.

"Perhaps you might live longer than most." erath said coldly, holding tightly to his daughter. "Go ahead and call for the crone. She will be able to heal the princess."

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39 Re: The old ways on Mon Jul 09, 2018 3:24 pm

“You can try.” Raven challenged, giving him another prod. Her father had left her in a bad mood, and it seemed Odin was suffering for it.

“The crone? Are you sure, your majesty?” One of the elves bodyguards asked uncertainly. “You know she will demand payment...” the way he spoke the words, it was as though the last payment had been rather high.

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40 Re: The old ways on Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:35 pm

"I'm sorry about your sister." Odin growled, shoving to his feet and once again towering over her. "Is that you want to hear, black bird?" 

"That is something to be discussed between the two of us. It is no concern of yours." Erath snapped. "Do as I say or I shall feed you to her!"

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41 Re: The old ways on Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:42 pm

Though she should have been intimidated by Odin’s large stature compared to her rather diminiutive height, Raven merely shook her head. “Don’t try and placate me with false sentiment, bear.” She replied, her gaze looking up into his own steadily. “I am not one of your human women, I have no need for pretty lies.”

The elf quickly nodded and sucrriednoff to do as commanded. 
In all truth, such an action was not needed. The trees before them suddenly seemed to part, revealing a path that had not been there a moment ago.

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42 Re: The old ways on Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:57 pm

"All right." Odin sneered. "I'm not sorry. I wish you hadn't come along so we could have taken her hide back to the king."

"And here she is. I should have known you were nearby Isold. Never could leave your daughter to my care. Or her half sister's for that matter. Come, boy. Meet the Crone." Erath said thinly, turning his head toward Fallon.

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43 Re: The old ways on Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:05 pm

Raven’s eye twitched ever so slightly, and before Odin could stop her she had hooked her bow behind his legs and sent Fhe tall human crashing to the forest floor again. “How about I skin you instead? No one will miss the prince’s work horse.” She sneered.

Fallon was staring wide eyed at the flame haired woman who was there to meet them at the door of a small cottage. “That’s a crone?!” He spluttered rather undiplomatically. 
Isold rolled her moss green eyes, then shook her head at the king. “I see you are still peddling your lies about me.” She remarked with a lilting accent that was clearly very different to that of Erath and his daughters.

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44 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:41 am

This time Odin reacted badly. He rolled onto his back and returned the favor, kicking Raven's feet out from under her. "Hit me again and I'll shove that bow down your throat!" He roared, crawling across the forest floor to pin her beneath him. 

"I can't have you filling my daughter's head full of lies the way did me. Heal her and I will leave. After all, you made it clear I am not welcome." Erath hissed at Isolde. He gave Fallon a dark look for even daring to speak.

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45 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:48 am

Raven was somewhat annoyed to find her slender wrists pinned beside her head as the large human glared down at her. From this close vantage, he would no doubt see the slice in her palm from where she had gripped her dagger while being reprimanded by her father. “Promises, promises.” She remarked bravely.

Isolde seemed bored by whatever Erath was saying, no doubt accustomed to his harsh words. The red haired beauty was smiling as she looked Fallon over now. “Is this my payment?” She purred.

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46 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:33 am

"if you're such an outspoken woman, why do you let your father walk all over you?" Odin asked, his tone almost soft as he looked at RavensR hand. "It's still bleeding. Don't your kind have healing salves?"

"The boy is mine." Erath growled, stepping in front of Fallon. "Help my daughter, witch. Do what I came for." He ordered.

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47 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:24 am

Raven’s eyes glanced to where her palm was level with her vision, then shook her head slightly. “It will heal on its own.” She assured Odin, her own voice also softening considerably. “And to answer your question... I learned a long time ago not to challenge the king.” She added, though didn’t offer any elaboration.

Isolde fixed Erath with a scathing glance when he spoke. “You dare try and rule me like one of your minions?” She asked him icily. “You took my child from me, claiming she was not safe, and this is what you let happen to her?!”

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48 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:14 pm

"That makes two of us." Odin said, pulling her to her feet. "At least we have one thing in Common. We serve a cruel king." 

"That was not my fault. It was the human's. Your ignorant daughter disguised herself as a doe to watch a pair of hunters. She is a airheaded as you!"

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49 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:20 pm

Odin was so strong that in pulling the slender elf to her feet he used more force than was needed, sending her crashing against him with her palms pressed to his broad chest to steady herself. “He isn’t cruel... if you are his baby princess...” She whispered, surprised at how openinly honest she had just been with a man who was basically her enemy.

“And who tight her such magick?” Isolde asked, crossing her arms across her ample chest to glare at the king. 
Fallon was watching these two with an open mouth, a lot of what they were saying sounding like childish make believe to him.

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50 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:03 pm

Odin didn't know what to make of the auddes heat that spread though him. He tipped his head toward Raven, not even thinking about what he was doing. "She is nothing like you, Black bird." He breathed.

"Ebony." Erath said, speaking of his wife, the elven queen. "You know how she is about magick. If her daughter knows it, she must keep up appearances."

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51 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:13 pm

Raven stared up at the human before her, the way her eyes briefly move to his lips betrayed the fact she had just thought about what a human kiss would taste like. “And she’s all the better for it, bear.” She breathed in reply before finally peeling herself away from him. 

Isolde visibly bristled at the mention of the queen. “You had no right taking my baby and letting that monster raise her!”

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52 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:57 pm

Odin hated that he wanted the strange elf woman to stay near him. "I see why he forced to watch out for your sister. She obviously didn't receive the brains from your father. Prophet spare the man who must marry her." He chuckled.

"You refused to join me in the palace as my consort. Who raises her is no longer your concern." The king snapped.

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53 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:21 pm

Raven’s returning smile was just as sad as her strange coloured eyes. “She is the youngest, she will marry whoever she wishes.”

“I am no mans whore!” Isolde hissed daring to strike the king.

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54 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:07 pm

"But you?" Odin asked, stepping toward her to brush the hair out of her eyes. "Who are you supposed to marry?"

Erath's ice colored eyes sparkled with warning but he didn't react in any other way. "My daughter is suffering, witch. Heal her then name your price. You know my feeling for this child."

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55 Re: The old ways on Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:23 pm

“Whoever benefits my father the most.” Raven replied simply, though didn’t shy from the human’s touch. “The good of the kingdom must come before the joy of my heart.”  Apparently this was a sentiment that had been drilled into the elven princess from a young age.

Isolde’s green eyes danced when an idea occurred to her. “My price is saving this child, in exchange for your eldest.” She purred, patting the head of the large white wolf that sat by her side.

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56 Re: The old ways on Thu Jul 12, 2018 12:42 am

Odin nodded solemnly. "Our king tells Fallon the same thing. Only...he has to prove himself in order to get the right bride." He turned his eyes away from her, ashamed that he'd told his prince's secret. "The Prophet isn't pleased with our village." 

Erath shook his head, his lips now set in a thin line. "This was a waste of time. I will leave her fate to the healers of my kingdom." He snarled.

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57 Re: The old ways on Thu Jul 12, 2018 12:55 am

“I watched the two of you hunt, your prince is very good... for a human. Is that not proof enough?” Raven asked, her eyes never leaving Odon’s face, even when he turned his gaze away in shame. “For what it’s worth... I am sorry I kicked your ass.” She added with an almost playful grin.

Isolde held up a slender hand, then gestured Erath lay their daughter on the table that also seemed to double as an alter to a deity Fallon didn’t know. “You did this.” The flame haired woman commented as she looked at the human prince, making it clear it wasn’t a question. 
Fallon cast his eyes down to his feet, feeling deeply ashamed, even if it had only been an accident. “Prophet forgive me... but my bow slipped.” He breathed.
Isolde merely rolled her deep green eyes. “Prophet? What good will a dead human do you?”

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58 Re: The old ways on Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:31 am

"You mean you tried to." Odin corrected in a deep grumble. "If I did decide to raise a hand to a woman you wouldn't stand a chance. And no, his hunting skills are not enough. He possesses no gifts from the Prophet. His father is deeply ashamed of this."

"Fallon..." The name left Lily's lips in a whispering sigh.
 Erath's frown deepened considerably. She's been watching the humans again." He hissed. "I don't see why. What is so interesting about them? They are weak and useless. They can't even use magick."

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59 Re: The old ways on Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:22 am

Raven tutted and patted Odin’s chest rather patronisingly. “You keep hiding behind that excuse, big guy.” She replied. “What’s gifts are you talking about anyway? Humans have short lives and no magick.”

“They are different.” Isolde told Erath simply, like he was truly stupid. “We always crave what is new and different, you were the same.” She pointed out.
Fallon had slipped away as the two elder people tossed barbs at each other, peering down at Lily where she lay on the table. “Can you forgive me?” He breathed, surprising himself by gently taking hold of her slender hand.

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60 Re: The old ways on Sat Jul 14, 2018 3:05 pm

"The prophet made them special. They can do things that normal humans can't. Things like detecting their hunt even when it is hidding." Odin explained.

"It's not your fault." Lilly breathed, managing a smile. "You're kind for a human." She added. She reached out, resting her cool fingers over his own.

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