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 Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert

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Alan_Dietrich

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 7:47 am

The moon was high and full, Sigurd let it's glow wash over him like a blanket and his golden fur almost shimmered in the light. He listened to Lopiena and Jacquelyn converse, so Lopiena was hearing the ground scream at her, he guessed thatade sense. There weren't many druids in ThunderKnoll so he wasn't aware of what made them tick. He was relieved to hear that the woman was more relaxed on what he supposed was Druidic rules compared to how regimented Lo tried to be.

As he always did, Sigurd tried to shift back to his human form, but not even a hair moved. He didn't know why he tried, almostike it was a game for himself. His ears twitched at the sound of shifting sand as Ashwyn approached. His heart skipped a beat as her scent hit his nose. Despite the battle hours ago she still smelled sweet. He turned to her, teeth barred and snarling before grabbing her and pulling her into his arms, his face softened instantly and he licked her neck playfully. He loved this woman so much it almost hurt.

Suddenly it dawned on him. She was still.. herself, in that she wasn't a werewolf. "So... He said softly... He never turned you. You were carrying his child and he never turned you?"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 8:02 am

Ashwyn was rather drawn in to the conversion Lo and th woman were having that she didn't notice Sigurd making a move towards her. His sudden growl and grabbing her made her gasp. She lay in his grasp, for a moment frightened, but only for a moment. When he licked her neck she felt a shiver travel her spine and she smiled. Her fingers dug into the fur on his arms and she smiled at the softness.

When he spoke to her, she looked up at him. She smiled softly and shook her head. "No. He didn't." She sat up slightly to look more directly at him. "He was human when we were... together. And it was only the one time so..." She shrugged.

Then something occurred to her. She looked at him, really taking in his form. He was broader in his hybrid form, and his fur was so soft. She felt a steering in her loins just looking at the raw power he exuded in this form. She met his eyes again. "Do you want to turn me? I mean... I'm sure it's inevitable... especially since I have a very difficult time keeping my hands off of you." She said with a smirk, running her hands along his arms and pressing her chest closer to him in emphasis. "But... do you want to actively turn me? Would you... maybe like me better that way?"
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Lopiena

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 8:40 am

Looking up in surprise at Jacquelyn's laughter, Lo almost starts to smile but there's still uncertainty...until she takes Lopiena's hand with her own. Flinching visibly when they touch the ground together, the screaming threatens to overwhelm her with pain again...but this time, Jacquelyn's soothing voice guides her through it. Sensing the life...as different as it is...is so comforting, and it's fascinating to see how life has continued even here. The earth has changed, and life goes on...different, but beautiful in its own way. Almost saddened when Jacquelyn takes her hand away, Lo continues to hold onto the earth in fascination. The screaming is still there, but greatly diminished as it happened centuries ago. Much greater is the joys of new life; plants and animals relishing in their simple existence.

Looking up at last, Lopiena smiles genuinely. Even the headache is mostly gone. Sometimes all it takes is just the knowledge that what you are is enough. "Thank you. I...didn’t realize...uhm. And I'm sorry for...being stuffy...that's just what I thought we had to do. I don't like it either." Grinning sheepishly, Lo looks at the ground again before continuing. "So...how did you come to this place? And..." Looking around again at the scorpion remains, Lo looks up again. "Where did those come from? And why were they chasing you?"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 8:53 am

"I'll love you no matter what form you take" he smiled and nuzzled his cold nose into her. That said though... Did she want to be turned? Maybe that's why she hadn't... "If that's something you want, it would be my honor and duty to see you through it" he said softly "I'm sure you're aware of the methods?" He asked in an almost hushed tone "I'll leave the choice up to you" Sigurd's tail thudded softly against the sand, his heart rate had quickened at the through the of having his mate join him. Thoughts of the future, hunting together, howling in the moonlight and most importantly knowing that she'd be more resilient to damage especially on this quest. "You don't have to choose tonight, it's a big decision and it will be a big change"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 9:05 am

Jacquelyn smiled at Lopiena, glad that she was able to hold on to the life in the desert. She waived off her comment about being stuffy. "Don't worry about it. I had a stuffy teacher too." She winked playfully.

"I live here. I've lived here for many years. Since I was about your age, actually." She smiled. "I cam from a lush land where life is easy to see and feel. I wanted a challenge." She winked again. "But now, this place is my home. I find the desert beautiful and you haven't lived until you've seen a desert sunrise." She responded.

When Lo asked about the scorpions, Jacquelyn laughed. "Oh them?" She stood and walked over to them. She kicked at the hard carcass with her toe gently. "Bastards. They tried to make a home of the cave I was staying in. Normally they're not a problem for me, but I was preparing for the ritual myself and was low on magic. I had no choice but to run." She shrugged. "but then the land told me you had arrived, so I decided to come find you." She smiled at the girl again.


"The land told you?" Cirro asked.

Jacquelyn nodded. "Indeed. The land and I are quite close. They told me of the newcomers and I wanted to meet you. We haven't had new people in these lands for many years." She smiled. She turned back to them and smiled. "So, did you want to do the ritual with me? I haven't performed it with another in many many years. It would be a joy to connect with another in that way again." She smiled.

---

Ashwyn smiled at him. She touched the side of his face, running her fingers along the fut there. "I want you. I want to be with you. Forever and longer if I can. Nothing else matters." She said softly.

When he asked if she knew the methods she nodded. "I do. And I'll admit, one sounds far more enjoyable than the other." She smirked and pressed her forehead to his
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 9:26 am

Sigurd smiled "well, your live will be extended well beyond your normal years... We'll outlive Most elves born at the same time" he pressed his forehead against hers and sighed happily "then tonight, you'll be one of my kind and recieve the blessing of the ManaWell" he kissed her cheek and pulled her close. He wasn't sure how long it would take for her body to start it's change but he figured the full moon tonight would be wonderfully symbolic either way.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 9:33 am

Ashwyn felt a shiver travel her body at his words. Her breathing increased just thinking about being with him in this form. Her hands gripped his arms a bit tighter without her even realizing it. She smiled at him and nodded.

She lowered her voice a bit so there was no chance of the others overhearing. "If it weren't for the fact that we promised to help, I would drag you away right now." She whispered, her arousal growing at the very thought of what was to come, it would be obvious to Sigurd's nose.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 9:38 am

Listening to Jacquelyn's story with fascination, Lo grins at her playful comment on stuffy teachers. And a challenge...yes, this certainly would be! "Didn't the ground scream at you when you first got here? How did you overcome it?" ...or maybe she'd had a chance to acclimate by entering slowly...their fantastic ride on the dragon may have had unintended consequences. Still, it took days off their journey, and seeing Arvan free was well worth it!

At her mention of the scorpions, Lo scowls thoughtfully. "Strange that they would attempt such a thing unprovoked. Normally the wild stays in the wild and avoids conflict that can be avoided." Wow that was repetitive...maybe her head still wasn't fully recovered. Still though. Indicating the tent and the infant sleeping within, Lo continues in a hushed tone. "Were they attracted to the child? How long have you had her? I mean..." sigh. Enough silly questions.

Standing up slowly, Lo smiles and bows respectfully to the woman. "I would be honored to connect with you in ceremony. Only...I don't know what to do out here...I have some materials, but where to find spring water?"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 9:57 am

Sigurd laughed softly the sentiment was returned. A familiar scent hit his nose and he looked into her eyes, it was clear she was ready but like she said. They had the ceremony to assist with. There was a sudden tightness in his trousers that would be obvious to the half-elf in his lap. He felt the slightest embarrassment at the the thought of disrobing now that his bestial sword was unsheathed, he'd have to calm himself before that happened. Leaning down he nipped nape of her neck and followed with a gentle lick, he couldn't explain it but even the saltyness of her dried sweat sent chills through his body.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 10:17 am

Ashwyn could feel the change between her legs as she sat on Sigurd's lap and she smiled. The temptation of sneaking away before the ceremony was growing.

When he nipped at her neck she gasped in pleasure and when his tongue traveled the length of her neck she couldn't stop the soft moan from escaping.

She leaned in a bit closer to him. "I think we're entering dangerous territory." She said with a chuckle and couldn't resist wiggling down into his lap a little more, enjoying the feeling of the bulge settling against her.

---

Jacquelyn smiled at Lo's questions. She chuckled when Lo said that the wild keeps to itself. "Not out here. Everything wants to kill you out here." She chuckled. "You'll get used to it. Or you won't leave. One or the other." She shrugged. "Either we adapt to the land or the land will take us. Those are our only options." She explained.

"It's not an easy thing to learn...." She said in regard to the screaming land. "I wasn't alone when I came here. That helped. My partner and I were able to suffer through it together. It wasn't until the first torrential rain fall that we discovered the life here. But now I can't NOT see it. You will see it easier with time." She smiled.

At the mention of the baby, Jacquelyn tilted her head to the side. "Hm?" She glanced at the tent. "OH! That! Right. Oh not long. But we can worry about that after." She waived it off.

When Lo spoke of the spring water, Jacquelyn waived it off. "The land will provide. There is nothing required for any ceremony except for the druid and the land. If you have a Druidic Focus then that can keep you grounded, but it's possible without." She motioned to her pendant. "This is my focus. I am honored by the Goddess Selune and pay tribute to her this night." She smiled. "Speaking of which..." She pulled her clothing up over her head and quickly disrobed.

Her body was perfect and smooth. Her breasts were small but sagged slightly with her age and her mound was covered with thick short curls of dirty blonde hair. She placed her hands on her hips and smirked. "It's better to not have anything separating our bodies from the land." She explained.


Cirro and Zane stared, wide eyed, at the boldness of the druid woman. Cirro's face turned a deep red and he turned away, embarrassed. Zane was too stunned to even move. He kept staring at her body, not really seeing her but also unable to look away. His ears turned a deep flush and he finally tore his eyes away. "Yes... well... Uhm..." He stuttered, knowing he had promised Lo that he would assist her but now being very shy about it.


Last edited by AniRedFox on Thu May 24, 2018 10:39 am; edited 1 time in total
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Lopiena

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 10:30 am

<"Either we adapt to the land or the land will take us. Those are our only options."> Lopiena nods. Makes sense; even softer lands deal harshly with the weak.

Wondering idly about Jacquelyn's partner...it's clear she has or had one with the infant in the tent but Lo isn't going to ask directly...she nods at the description of her focus and how quickly the older woman disrobes. Good to know that it's not just a weirdness from her own family. Quickly disrobing as well, Lo tries not to smirk at Cirro and Zane's obvious discomfort. They'll get used to it...or they won't, it's all the same. Looking to Jacquelyn as the Matron...her role is clear, Lo looks at Zane as the Elder. "Zane? You don't have to if it makes you uncomfortable. There are no judgments here." Furthering her gaze to Sigurd and Ashwyn, Lo wonders if she should even ask...they're looking very comfortable together...

As the chill air pricks her skin, Lo realizes her small breasts are perking. Slightly embarrassed but only slightly, she’s suddenly glad Cirro turned away. This could get awkward fast...
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 10:53 am

Sigurd smiled "we're in the wasteland, I'd say we're already in dangerous territory." Hearing the flop of clothing he turned his head to look. The Druid woman had shed her robes into a heap on the sand. "Looks like it's time..." He said softly, easing Ashwyn off his lap. He walked over to the others and stood stiffly he was willing his body into calmness, once he was confident, he pulled the release on his armor and let it clatter to the sand before pulling off his soft clothing. Giving his body a shake he allowed his muscles to relax though a bit of cold breeze nipped at him. Looking down he sighed to see the pointed red tip of his shaft still exposed. Fighting back his embarrassment he stood as if he hadn't noticed.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 11:10 am

Zane was bright red, but he shook his head. "No No. I gave you my word that I would help. I... I never go back on my word." He said, resolute. He stood and, without making eye contact with anyone, he slowly began to drop his clothing to the ground.

Cirro, not understanding what was happening, having not been a participant of the conversation regarding this ceremony, was at a loss for words. "Uhm... do you... need me to uhm... do anything?" He asked, turning to Lo and then turning even MORE red at seeing her also nude. He quickly looked away again, not wanting to be rude.

---

Ashwyn glanced at the woman when Sigurd turned and saw her standing in the nude. She raised her brows in shock for a moment, and then smirked. "Well, she's not shy is she?" She said with a chuckle. She allowed Sigurd to pull her from his lap and then followed him to the others. His armor was far easier to remove than hers, so she began unclasping straps and such as they walked back to the group. When her armor hit the sand she found herself dreading putting it back on...sand would be everywhere. But she sighed and shrugged. She took a calming breath before removing the last of her small clothes and letting them fall to join the others.

Her body was covered in goosebumps from the chill of the air and she shivered slightly as it touched her bare skin. Like, Lo, she too was rather perky, but it was far more noticble on her sizeable chest than the other two women there. In an attempt to hide her own embarassment she lowered her gaze, which caused her to glance down at Sigurd and notice that he too was having a proiblem. Though one that was of a different nature. It made her smirk and she moved closer to him. His fur was warm and she snuggled against his body, standing in front of him to help hide his... issue, while making it look like she was cold and using his fur and body heat for warmth. She glanced up at him and winked.

By the time Zane was disrobed the moon was almost directly overhead.

Jacquelyn clapped both of her hands together and smiled. "Wonderful! More participants! I have't done this with a group in YEARS!" She said happily. She walked around to each person, and stared at the land, as though deciding where each should stand. She placed her hands on Zane's arms and moved him over to one side, causing him to blush and look pointedly at the moon to keep from seeing... something. Jacquelyn giggled at him. She moved to Cirro and began yanking him to another part of the circle as he blushed furiously.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 1:29 pm

Smiling at Ashwyn and Sigurd as they approach,  Lo doesn't even notice whatever issues they may be having; it's just great to be able to share this bonding ceremony with them.  Everyone looks so different in the moonlight...even Sigurd looks slightly bigger than usual, but it's hard to tell with all the fur.  Wondering if Jacquelyn's casual nature extends to the full ceremony, Lo watches her carefully...since they're being positioned, it's probably safe to assume some things are done whether it's casual or not. Well good then, she doesn't feel too far out of her element.

Slowly walking to her usual spot to the south, Lo quietly names the components at each point. "To the north...the sky above, the wind in the trees, the breath of life, the place of the Elder..." trying not to smirk, Lo can't help but think how appropriate it is to have the long-winded Elder representing air...ahem. Normally there would be some sort of incense or smoke to make the air visible; it's actually nice to not have to have smoke in her eyes for a change.
"To the east...the rising sun, the destruction force of fire, the place of men." Appropriate for Sigurd with his firey personality...usually represented by a candle or some such thing.
"To the south, the earth, the renewal of growth, the place of youth..." Idly wondering if Jacquelyn will place Cirro with her or with Sigurd, Lo tries not to watch him too closely. Still, it's weird not to have a leaf or some other plant with her...well she has her staff, that's something.
"To the west, the moon, the waters of life, the place of the mother..." Jacquelyn, and appropriate for Ashwyn as well with Pip under her caring eyes.

Standing firmly in her place to the south, Lo lifts her staff and places one end in the sand. "My focus is the heart of the oak, the protector of the forest, who gave his life that others may live. With the heart of the forest, the forest is always with me."
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 4:41 pm

Jacquelyn  had just gotten Cirro to stand where she wanted him when Lopeina's voice could be heard as she recited. Jacquelyn watched in silence for a moment, arms crossed over her breasts. When she displayed her focus, Jacquelyn  approached it and looked closely at it. "It's very beautiful." She commented. "May I?" She asked before reaching forward and touching it. She ran her fingers down the engravings and had a concentrated look on her face. Finally she stopped, looking carefully a Lo, then turned away.

"Don't think to hard, kid." She said as she walked to towards Sigurd and Ashwyn. "The land doesn't care where we stand." She said with a wink over her shoulder. She got to Sigurd and Ashwyn and took Ashwyn's shoulders. "Come here, dear." She pulled her away from Sigurd and instantly saw Sigurd's... problem. She raised a brow and smirked. "Ahh, I see." She shoved Ashwyn back against Sigurd rather forcefully, though she had a playful smirk on her face, as though she knew that the shove would force Ashwyn's rear against Sigurd's crotch. "You know, on second thought, I'd say you two would do much better right here." She winked at Ashwyn then looked up at Sigurd. "It's been a while since I've come across a lycan. It's nice to... see one... again." She winked, glancing down at his growing arousal again before smirking up at him and walking away. She pat Ashwyn's shoulder as she left, causing Ashwyn to blush a bit.


Ashwyn glanced back at Sigurd with an embarrassed smile before chuckling a bit.

Jacquelyn moved her way back to Lopiena and placed her hands on her hips, looking down at the girl. "Some people say that ritual and tradition and position and all that is important and makes the ceremony work. That's a load, if you ask me. I've been out here for a long time. Far away from all the things that are supposedly important, and I've never had the land fail me when I give myself to it. It's up to you, of course. If you want to stick with what your teachers taught then I'll go along with it. But I'm telling you, the land doesn't care where we stand or what we say or any of that. The land cares about your heart and your spirit and your connection to the land and to those in this circle. That's it." She smiled at her.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 6:06 pm

Sigurd felt a flush of embarrassment as Ashwyn was pulled away from him, there was more of himself exposed than he'd liked and having his mate rubbing against him didn't help, it made things worse when she was shoved back into him and slightly uncomfortable seeing as her tailbone slammed into him. Sigurd winced slightly, that had taken care of any further growth for the duration of the ritual... Ashwyn would have to make it up to him
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 6:35 pm

Shyly offering Jacquelyn her staff when requested, Lopiena watches her face carefully. It's so...different to experience this without all the rigmarole Gramma always insisted upon, and while it's all very liberating it's also...well...something. As much as Lo hated the severity of the ceremony at least she knew what to do and her role in it. Right now she doesn't have a clue what to do or say...don't think too hard. Right. Holding her staff close to her body, Lo jumps a little when the cold silver touches her bare skin. Still getting used to it...well, that's the whole point of the ceremony anyway, to refocus.

Watching how she moves and interacts with Sigurd and Ashwyn, Lo wonders about who this person is. Not afraid of Sigurd; apparently used to seeing his people...and the mention of coming from 'a lush place'...probably from the High Forest with some interaction with Thunderknoll. Or maybe lots of interaction, with the way she winks at him. Hmm. Plus with Sigurd wincing like that, she must have seen something Lopiena missed. People watching is a skill learned over a lifetime, and this person definitely should be watched.

At Jacquelyn's words, Lopiena nods slowly. "You're right, of course. All the extra stuff is just extra. I just don't know any other way.  Would...would you be willing to lead?"

Standing with her staff in front of her, Lopiena closes her eyes and focuses on the ground beneath her feet and the chill air against her skin. Full awareness of the body, the earth, and surroundings helps bring peace and focus to the mind.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 7:06 pm

Jacquelyn smirked. "If you like. Not really much to lead though. I know the ritual your used to. Lots of chanting and reciting. Peh. Always hated that stuff." she chuckled.

"This ceremony is a personal experience. Between you and the land. Your focus connects you to the land." she turned to the others. "Your job in this ceremony is to connect to the each other. Your unity will strengthen our connection to the land. We must make a circle and touch flesh to flesh. Palms work." she said to Cirro, who was still clothed. "And some choose to touch more." she winked over to Sigurd and Ashwyn
.

Ashwyn raised a brow. "I have a feeling you've had very interesting ceremonies in the past."

Jacquelyn smirked. "Oh you have no idea." she chuckled.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 7:14 pm

Sigurd stood silently trying to read this druid woman, she certainly wasn't as pious as some of the druids he had met in the past. He took in her form, she was very fit for her age he couldn't help but examine her body probably longer than he should, more than likely due to the full moon... She had mentioned in a round about way having seen a lycan before, to what degree was heavily hinted at yet she wasn't a werewolf so that just raised further questions.

When she spoke about others wanting to touch more than palms he smirked, he was certain Ashwyn would like nothing more than to do so, but she wouldn't be that bold... Would she??? Reaching out he grabbed the others hands to close the circle his arm span was nearly double the other two so it was easy.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 7:54 pm

Grinning at Jacquelyn's description of 'chanting and reciting'...sounds about right...Lo looks around at who was closest to her. Sigurd's arm length was substantial, so that's one hand; Cirro...well....shaking her head and resting her staff on her shoulder, Lo reaches out and takes his hand with a shy grin. Which he probably didn't see, since he's still considering the shape and form of his feet. Probably knows less about the body than she does, and that’s saying something! Ahhh well, nothing for it but to try.

At the mention of ceremonies with touching...more than hands...well! That's a new one on her, the very idea would probably horrify Gramma. Blushing almost as much as Cirro, Lo closes her eyes again and focuses on the earth and her body. ..which is unhelpfully providing extra moisture where she doesn't need it at the moment...grr. It's just the full moon. Or the wind against her body. Nothing more than that...really!
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 10:06 pm

So together they stood. Lo, then Cirro, then Jacquelyn, Zane, Ashwyn and Sigurd. All hands joined as the full moon shone directly down on them.

"Everyone close your eyes." Jacquelyn said. "Focus on the hand in yours. Feel the energy pass between you. Feel it join in the circle. Sense one another." As she spoke, a soft glow would cover them.

As they focused, they would each start to see images in their minds eye. Flashes of emotion. Snippets of memories not their own.....

A small fairy boy with a lost toy, searching through a toadstool forest as the sun set rapidly. A young human girl hiding from bullies behind some wooden crates in an alleyway, hands over her ears to keep from hearing the insults flying from their mouths. A floating mage hand nicking biscuits from a farmers stand and floating them to a little human boy who ran as shouts echoed behind him. A small half-elf girl hiding in the brush of the forest staring at horrific hags as they slash at something tied to a stake. The screams echoing throughout the woods. A tiny gnome boy pouring over books while other children speaking loudly to one another, reciting insults and teasing rhymes.

A flash of pain would jolt through the connection and then would wash into a comfortable warmth.

A large direwolf female, curled around a small pup under the full moon, nuzzling the top of his head comfortingly. A good night kiss from a large gnome man to a small gnome boy as he's getting tucked in. Happy fairy children laughing and singing songs around a fairy boy, presenting him with cake and goodies. A small half-elf girl and a human man hidden in a tall tree as the man points out animals and plant life. A young human girl being cradled by a strong woman with dark brown hair and dark eyes and feathers woven in her hair.

The warmth would wash through them all leaving them feeling comfortable and closer than they'd ever been throughout this journey. Then Lo would hear Jacquelyn's voice in her head. "Now, take hold of your focus. Hold it tightly. Focus all of the warmth from the circle into your focus."

While Lo was hearing Jacquelyn's instructions, the others would hear something else. "Do not break the connection! Hold Our flesh as we let go of hands!" She instructed. As she did this, she pulled the hands she held closer inward and placed them on her hips. Then, with her free hands, she put her hands on either side of her focus and held it tightly. The glow around her began to leave the others and travel into her focus.

The same would happen with Lopiena once she was grasping her own focus, so long as they didn't break skin contact.


Feeling Jacquelyn put his hand on her hip made Zane and Cirro blush even harder. But Cirro the most of all since he knew he'd still have to touch Lopiena.... somewhere. He kept his eyes closed and slid his hand along Lo's arm, trying to find her shoulder. He grasped something and prayed to all the gods he knew of that it was her shoulder he held....

[Lo can decide what it is Cirro grabbed....hehe]
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 10:28 pm

Memories... Thoughts and images he had nearly forgotten. He was a small child having just mastered his natural born cantrip he had made full use of it to steal food, whether from merchants or even his own well stocked pantry it was something his father had always given him grief over.

The next one hurt his heart, feeling the warmth of his mother, they had they're own ritual for the first few years of his life. Every full moon they would go out into the field just outside of ThunderKnoll and they would sleep in the tall grass, her fur would envelope him and there they'd sleep till morning. He missed that feeling...

Upon hearing their next instructions, Sigurd let his hand trace up the back of Lopiena's arm until he felt her shoulder blade he let his hand slide without breaking contact until it came to rest on her shoulder. The rest was up to her.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Thu May 24, 2018 11:52 pm

Feeling Cirro and Sigurd with her hands, and then truly feeling everyone as the connection enhances, Lopiena listens to the emotion in all of the memories.  Sadness, loss, fear, doubt, horror...comfort, joy, excitement, wonder, love.  All of these memories wash over her as tears stream down her cheeks, first from the painful memories then from the memories that cause the heart to ache.  It's almost as if everyone's memories are her own now, and all she wants to do is hold them all and tell them it's going to be ok.

Listening to Jacquelyn's voice in her head, Lo moves forward into the tighter circle.  Sigurd's fur tickles as he traces up her arm, leaving his warmth in its wake; Cirro's hand did the same, moving up her arm to...well, he did at least follow the outline of her arm, but with their bodies so much closer together her breast is right up against her bicep and...well, he did at least get to her shoulder eventually.  Lo tries to suppress a shiver running through her body.  It's just the cold, really...but suddenly she's feeling oh so warm...right, focus on the emotion of the circle.

With the connection more than just hands now, Lo grasps her staff with both hands and focuses inward on it.  Remembering all the emotion of her companions, she also pulls on the myriad of emotions floating within her...fear, pride, doubt, anger; joy, delight, excitement, and now a new one...desire.  Taking all of these thoughts, memories, and emotions together, Lo mentally pushes all of it into her focus.  Her staff is her heart; its strength is her strength; its solidity her stabilization; its power her own; her magic, its magic; her determination, its strength.  Together they are one.

Feeling her doubts and fears wash away into the strength of her staff, Lo also focuses on the joy of companionship.  Her staff had been with her through an extremely tumultuous time in her life, and had been her stabilization and sole companion for far too long.  Even though it's technically just a piece of wood, the emotion pushed into it over the years has given it a power far beyond a simple stick.  Now recognizing the power that her own emotions had endowed upon it, Lo finally feels the comfort of companionship exuding from herself to a degree that she can now offer that comfort back; her sole companion is now one of many, and that power is as much a part of them as her.  It's...a very strange feeling to have a simple piece of wood empowered in such a way, but it's true.  When she needs comfort, she knows her focus will be there...and her companions are now part of that focus as well.

Her own focus complete, Lopiena tries hard to maintain the same power for the rest of the ceremony...but it's always hard to keep an extreme mental state going for very long.  During the long and ritualistic ceremonies she'd gone though in the past, her mind was usually wandering long before the first incantation was complete...this one is much nicer, much less formal, but she finds her mind wandering all the same.  Plus there's so much more to think about...while she'd been focused on her staff, somehow the circle had gotten closer and now her hip is up against Sigurd and her backside against Cirro.  He's still clothed so there's no telling what she's brushing up against, and there's not exactly much space to move away at the moment...well, it'll just have to wait.  Besides, there's no denying that it's an enjoyable feeling to be surrounded by so many wonderful companions.  That other feeling?  Well, it's nice and warm.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Fri May 25, 2018 4:21 am

Sigurd had been a wash with images of not only himself but the others as well, it truly was an experience... Gathering a greater understanding for his companions hisharsh feelings seemed to be pushed out of his body. He could only imagine what Lopiena was feeling, she was young and Sigurd wasn't sure if she could process this much.

As the circle tightened Sigurd found himself pressed against his small Druid friend and whether it was he was overcome by emotion and a feeling of closeness or just wanted to show support to her, Sigurd leaned down and gave Lopiena a gentle lick that ended up being somewhere around her neck or collar bone, he couldn't see after all.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert   Fri May 25, 2018 8:11 am

Of all the strange things they've experienced so far in this adventure, standing in a close circle without any clothes on while watching various memories of her companions was probably at the top of the list.

The memories flashed through Ashwyn's mind so fast but at the same time she knew exactly what happened in each memory. It was like they were HER memories now. She could feel the uncertainty Cirro felt as he searched the toadstool forest for his toy. The humiliation and concern as Lopiena hid from the bullies. Sigurd's adrenaline from the fear of being caught stealing. Her own horror at watching the murder of her parents. The screams that still haunt her nightmares echoing loudly in her head. And Zane trying to seem indifferent while he was teased but really feeling the sting of rejection.

They were all as real as her own horrific memory. The pain of them stung like a knife wound. The pain stretched and then warmed before finally fading. The feeling left behind was warm and comfortable and then new memories filled her mind.

The feeling of warm fur surrounded her accompanied by the feeling of a motherly love from Sigurd's mother. Zane's guardian as he tucked him in, love and caring radiating from him. Close friends laughing and hugging and singing around Cirro as they presented him with a gift. Feeling her father's arms around her as they sat in their special tree and his deep voice educated her about the various life in the forest. Lopiena being held and rocked by her mother, the warmth filling her whole being.

As painful as the first memories were, these were equally warm and comforting. Ashwyn felt herself sigh in contentment at the warm fuzzy memories. It was amazing to share this with others. She'd never felt so connected to others before. Even with how close she and Sigurd had become, this took it to a whole other level. Being able to share their fear and their concern and their love. It was overwhelming and she felt tears trail down her cheeks beyond her control.

As the circle moved closer they all seemed to press together. She felt Sigurd's warm fur against her one side, a comforting and familiar feeling. And on the other side she felt Zane's bare skin against hers. With his height, his head was eye level with her bare chest. So overwhelmed by the emotions Ashwyn couldn't bring herself to be embarrassed. It seemed strange to be so comfortable in such an awkward position, but with the memories they'd all shared it just seemed.... natural.

As the emotions overwhelmed her she felt herself tighten her grip on the hands she held. She also leaned her head over to Sigurd and pressed her nose against his fur, nuzzling against him and reveling in his warmth and the comfort it provided.

--

The emotions and memories wracked everyone in the group, so much so that Cirro hadn't noticed he's latched onto Lopeina's breast for a moment before finding her shoulder. As they closed the circle, Cirro just followed along until he had two naked women pressed firmly against his body. He couldn't tell who was who exactly, but he was pretty sure it was Lopinea that had her backside pressed against his front. As the warm filled him it also filled... another part of him. He bit his lip in embarrassment as he felt himself lengthen and knew that she would be able to feel it. How could she not feel it? His length was growing quite firm securely against the crevice of her backside.

He was overwhelmed by both embarrassment but also something else. The closeness of sharing their memories made him want to.... be even closer. And the contact was... well... rather encouraging. He found his grip on her shoulder tightening slightly as he pushed against her without even realizing he'd done it.
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Chapter Three: Trials Toward the Desert
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