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A private role play between Ellentasia and Mynameis_Gurgle!
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The smell of spices would fill the air for any traveler passing by, anyone who chose to follow the smell would find themselves at a gypsy wagon in a clearing of trees just off the trail. A very temporary campsite had been set, a tent off the side of her wagon held an old draft horse who held his head low, munching on a bucket of oats in front of him. Near the wagon was a stand advertising potions and elixirs guaranteed to cure a number of conditions and cause love. Bottles, boxes and various other containers sat stacked upon the stand, disorganized to those that didn't know the woman who owned it. Thalia, the owner, could find any item on that stand blindfolded.

Thalia slipped out of her wagon holding a small vial as she skipped across the clearing toward a bubbling cauldron, humming softly to herself. Two silver belts rest on her hips, clanging together with each step; she wore a long blood red skirt that swished just above her ankles and a tight black top. She stopped in front of the cauldron and reached over, pulling a wiggling worm from a table of ingredients and dropping it into the boiling mixture. A burst of purple smoke coiled into the air, Thalia simple held the vial in the smoke and it all sucked into it, settling as a sparkling pink liquid. She capped the vial, set it back down on her stand before heading toward her wagon and stopping right in front of the old horse.

"That might be the most potent yet, Gav." A grin spread across her face as the horse looked up at her but went right back to his oats as if trying to ignore her. "The love potion, I mean." The horse just snorted and stopped eating but refused to look up at her.

There was a twinkle in Thalia's eye that only seemed to brighten and she shook her head. "Now don't be jealous, Gav, it's not for me." She reached out, patting him on his head before speaking once more. "Besides, Jealousy is what got you in this mess."
She burst into another fit of giggles and twirled away from the horse, watching the road through the trees.

"Now who will be my first visitor here?"


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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.


The man raced through the woods, brambles snagging his robes and ripping at the old fabric as he sprinted for his life. Horse hooves thundered behind him as dogs howled their continued pursuit. He almost considered leaving the fabric behind as it caught on yet another unfortunately thorny vine, but then no one would take him seriously as a warlock without it and that somehow seemed vital.

His breathing and ragged and his pale face had turned a bright red as he raced towards the edge line of the forest. A town lay beyond, he knew, and if he could just reach it there might be someone willing to hide him from his tail. He just needed to get there…

“Aahg!” He yelped as his boot caught on a root and sent him tumbling into the underbrush. He tried to scramble to his feet, but the thorny foliage that seemed to cover every part of this blasted woodland hooked into the leather and refused to release him.

After fruitlessly tugging for several desperate minutes, the exuberant howls of the hunting dogs so thrilled to kill him became too close for comfort. He pulled his foot from the shoe and continued his frenzied flight. Rocks dug into his mostly bare foot (he had a stocking on but it had so many holes it might as well be gone) and cause him no small amount of discomfort. But at last he breached the holds of the woods and found himself on the outskirts of the town.

He raced towards the road and caught sight of a wagon off to the side. Or more, he smelled the brewery and half turned around to see it off to the side. That was perfect. If he could just get to that wagon, the fumes would hide his scent and he might escape certain death. He sprinted back towards the trees, collecting still more thorns in his clothing and almost-stocking.

At the clearing, he ran around the horse and skidded to a frantic halt in front of the gypsy. “Hide me, please! I’ll do anything!” He pantingly promised, silver eyes wide with fright. This was probably not the best thing to say to a woman he had never met before, but the soldiers were coming and forethought had never been Eirkham’s best trait. His hood had fallen back to reveal what might once have been a pleasant frock of blond hair but was currently caked with sweat and dirt an sticking up at all ends. His face was blotchy and hardly pleasant looking. But he put his hands together in a pleading gesture and stared at the woman with what he hoped was a pathetic enough expression to tug on her heartstrings.

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Thalia’s fingers ran along the back of the horse next to her, grinning as she saw it stiffen before continuing to eat once more. Bothering Gavin had become a bit of a game for her lately (though she supposed it had always been a game for her) the old horse was much older than most would realize, of course he wasn’t exactly a horse. A jealous ex-lover, Gavin had come to her wagon one day nearly twenty years ago and scared off Thalia’s partner for the night. Out of anger Thalia had turned him into a horse and forced forever to serve as her pack mule.

The sound of barking pulled Thalia from her reminiscing and she turned only to find herself face to face with a panting man. Purple eyes ran over her form, a smirk spreading across her lips, it was obvious that he had been running for a while and by the sounds of the approaching dogs he was obviously in need of help. When he pleaded with her, the smirk turned to a sly grin and she held her hand out. ”For something shiny I will allow you to hide in my wagon.”

There was a sparkle in her eye, she was small enough to be hidden completely by the large horse. Standing on her tip toes, Thalia glanced over the horse to search for any coming intruders. ”If you do not wish me to rat you out when they come I suggest maybe a handful of shiny things.” The witch raised an eye brow, handing resting on her hip as she waited for the man to drop the money in her hand. Of course, she wouldn’t just give his location away, Thalia didn’t do anything without being paid.


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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.


It took the poor man's exhausted mind a few moments to understand what she meant by something shiny. He had spent so long studying in towers where gold was only useful as a magical component, that he hadn't quite gotten used to the idea of using it as currency again. He began digging through his pockets, frantically pulling out whatever was inside. There were a myriad of pockets inside his robes and he spent a why dragging out the odds and ends of basic spell work before finding something suitably shiny.

A small pouch of gold coins was all he currently had with him and it about killed him to hand them over to the obviously greedy fingers of the gypsy, but in the long term he would need to avoid the soldiers. It was a necessary sacrifice. He dropped the pouch into her outstretched hand and scrambled past her into the wagon.

He had just darted behind whatever stocks she kept in it when the troop of soldiers rode out from the woods, following after a pack of hounds that sniffed and barked at the outskirts of the gypsy's camp. The man's scent was distorted by that of Thalia's potions, but it had ended at this point and the snuffled around anxiously for him. One dog had the man's missing boot in his jaws and was shaking it around like a rag doll.

"You there! Witch! Have you seen this man?" Each soldier had a on a suit of chain maile with the human king's laurel wreathed lion crest embedded within the links across their chests. They wore the heavy feather plumed helmets of the royal huntsman. The speaker's plume was red, indicating his status as Captain. They all stayed atop their horses who had clearly been running all day by their heavy breathing. The Captain held out a parchment that had a crude sketch of the blonde man with the words, 'Dangerous traitor" boldly written across the bottom.



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Thalia tapped her foot impatiently as the man went through his pockets, though it was enough for her to realize he was not a normal human, his robes suggested he was of the magic variety, though most men she had met born with the gift chose a more sagely appearance, old with the long grey beards. Thalia kept away from them, not that many of them were interested in a witch anyway as witches generally were interested in them, this warlock in front of her was young.

Though she didn’t dwell on these thoughts as the pouch was dropped into her palm and she waved him off as she poked through the gold pieces. Grinning, Thalia closed up the pouch once more and tied the small pouch to her belt. She had just stepped out from behind Gavin when the soldiers came to her camp, her good mood only widened as she saw the dogs sniffing around and a poster was shown to her.

Shaking her head, the witch rest her hands on her hips, the bangles on her wrists jingling as she shifted her weight from one from one foot to the other. ”Ahh yes, scruffy little thing, I might have seen him.” Her eyes trailed around the forest following the path to the town rather obviously. ”I believe he headed into the town…” She shrugged then, walking to her stand to straighten out her potions.

”You seem to be going through a lot of trouble for just one man, perhaps I could interest you in a little luck, help you find your way?” The witch grinned, lifting a small, silver vile. ”For a small price this could help you find him easily.”


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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.


The warlock bit down on one of his knuckles as he sweated nervously. He could hear the conversation going on and this shifting of the animals. He could only hope he'd had enough gold to keep the gypsy to her word. If she gave him he was a goner.

A few of the soldiers looked ready to be on their way into the town, but the Captain raised his hand and looked down at the dogs who were still sniffing about the edges of the area. They did not seem to think the man had gone to town. The Captain apparently did not either.

"You know that harboring a criminal is a crime against the crown, correct?" He said in a condescending tone. His face couldn't be seen through the helmet, but he had narrowed his eyes suspiciously at the woman. One of his men reached for the 'luck' she was offering but the Captain knocked his gloved hand away. "He is a traitor to the nation and a dangerous felon. If he is hidden here, you will face heavy charges. Is that clear?" He turned from her to look at his troop. "Search the area." He commanded.

Panicking, the warlock started scrambling through his pockets for something to stop them. He found a small whistle and wrapped a strand of hair around it. After briefly whispering an incantation (And a prayer that it would actually work), he blew lightly through it.

It wasn't very loud, but a breeze picked up outside that carried his scent to the dogs and to the town. A loud chorus of excited barks exploded around the camp and the pack raced off down the road, the one dropping the warlock's boot to give chase. The Captain sent another suspicious look at the gypsy and ordered her troops to follow.

Inside the wagon, Eirkham breathed out a sigh of relief and let his heart rate slowly decrease to a normal level. He pocketed the whistle and ran a hand through his messy hair. Curious, he withdrew a small mirror from yet another pocket and looked at himself. Sure enough, there were blue streaks forking through the blonde locks. It was fading, but he groaned in annoyance and drew his hood back over his head. This often happened when he performed magic.




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Thalia ground her teeth as the captain spook to her, though the smile remained on her lips. How dare he treat her as if she were not intelligent! The witch had been on this earth much longer than this man and seen many terrible times in her life, done many terrible things. His threat did not weigh on her in the slightest and his tone had done nothing to scare, instead made her angry. She set the vial back down, hands resting on her hips then as he commanded his men to search the area.

”Don’t you go breaking anything, there are expensive ingredients here!” Her eyes were set into a glare of annoyance, she could find a way to stop this man if she needed, however the warlock in her wagon beat her too it. Thalia could feel the magic in the air as the whistle was blown, though she knew no human would feel it. Obviously the boy hadn’t been completely hopeless if he could help himself while locked up in the wagon.

Glaring back at the Captain, Thalia went back to straightening out her stand as soldiers ran off after their dogs. Animals were easy enough to control, they didn’t think the same way as humans. Honestly she doubted they would be back any time soon, they had wasted enough time here that their criminal would have enough time to lose them.

After a long moment of shifting through her things Thalia walked to her wagon, only walking to the first step before poking her head through the curtains that covered the door. ”You better not have broken anything while you were here; some of those ingredients came at a high price.” She wasn’t just speaking about gold here.

Still she stepped back out of the wagon then, pulling the purse from her belt to count the gold the man had paid her, it was more than she had expected, but she wouldn’t tell him that.


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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.


Eirkham listened as the sound of hooves disappeared, willing his pounding heart to calm down. He didn’t move until the gypsy came to see him. He figured at that point he could either be sure he’d given her enough money to keep the hunters away or she had sold him out. There wasn’t much else to hope for.

“N-no!” He stammered when she asked if he had broken anything. “I didn’t break anything! Promise!” It was fairly lucky he hadn’t. His magic had a tendency to…escape him. Especially since that day.

He scrambled out of the wagon after her, taking care not to knock anything off the shelves. He did knock his head lightly on the top of the wagon as he stepped down from the wagon. “Er…thank you. For that.” He glanced around warily, half expecting there to still be soldiers around. “I don’t know how to…repay…well, I guess I already paid you so never mind that.” He felt a little awkward and probably looked it. He still only had one shoe which put him at a weird height. He was already a bit gangly, but now he was even worse.

He glanced around and spotted the gnawed leather the dog had left behind. He cheered lightly and snatched it up. “Oh, that was nice of that mutt to bring this to me!” He exclaimed, and then glanced around at the gypsy’s store in interest. He glanced at the horse and stepped up to him. “Aren’t you interesting.” He said, talking to Gavin. “What did you do to him?” He sniffed the air around the animal lightly. “Smells like a transformation, but…it’s really well done.” He patted the horse’s nose. “Even smells like a horse too. I mean…not that I expected you to not be a good mage…I just…Ah! I’m terrible at this! Sorry! It’s a great horse. What did it use to be? A squirrel? A toy?”


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Satisfied that her stand looked nice enough, Thalia moved to the cauldron she had set aside earlier, running her finger along the inside to make sure there was no residue left over from the love potion she had made earlier. Finding nothing she once again the cauldron over the fire, muttering softly under her breath as the cauldron filled itself with water. She was surprised when he spoke about repaying her and the smirk came to her lips once again. ”I wouldn’t ask any more money from you, if you still feel in debt to me you can repay me with your company.”

While he explored her camp a bit she turned, slipped into her wagon once more, coming out with a basket of fresh vegetables and dried meats. When she returned to the cauldron she pulled out a knife, cutting vegetables into the water that was slowly coming to a boil.

As the Warlock began to study the horse, Gavin stomped a bit frantically, snorting and shaking his mane. Thalia looked up when she was asked what she did to him, raising an eye brow as she dumped in some of the dried meat. She was beginning to see how this boy could get himself into so much trouble, though she didn’t mind. Coming across a witch who had been around as long as Thalia was becoming more and more rare, most had lost their balance and lived by themselves as hags, away from the public and only called upon by those desperate for a quick fix. Thalia was careful not to dive to deeply into the dark magic, her balance remained intact.

When she was asked what Gavin used to be a grin came to her lips, she made her way over to the two, patting the horses back end before answering the question. ”A man.” Thalia burst into giggles as Gavin shifted uncomfortable, snorting once more, though he did not dare leave.

Leaning against the horse, Thalia allowed her laughter to die down before speaking once more. ”So how exactly did you get yourself marked as a dangerous traitor, you child, look to be about as dangerous as a moth.”


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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.



He was willing to stay in her company for a while. At least until he got his bearings and figured out what to do next since his last plans had fallen through so very spectacularly. He nodded in response, though he was still absorbed in the horse and wasn’t really sure she was looking at him.

When she came closer and told him of the horse’s origins, Eirkham stumbled backwards away from the creature, turning wide eyes on Thalia. She had transformed a person!? That was inhumane! It was unethical! It was incredibly hard!

“You…you…what?” He looked between the giggling witch and the equine animal in horror. “Isn’t that…against the code…” There were certain codes of magical conduct he had been taught in his studies that were loosely kept by the various magical sects. Though he hadn’t ever understood who enforced them, he had been under the impression that they were taken rather seriously.

“You transformed me, you cretin.” Whispered a voice from inside the folds on his clothing. Eirkham clapped his hand over his chest and chuckled nervously along with her laughter, trying to cover up both his shock and the speech.

“Well.” He coughed and wiped his sweaty palms on his robe. “You are clearly…very talented. I…er…” He stammered as he sought some other line of conversation. He should have studied that more. Maybe if he was more refined he would get in less messes like this one.

The horse calmed slightly and Thalia sobered. He wasn’t sure he really wanted to answer that question, but he supposed it would come out eventually. “I…er… It's kind of a funny story...Ahem.” He coughed and flushed in embarrassment. “I mean…they may have taken…something I did…and interpreted it as an attack from Ponternia…Anyway what was your name? I'm Eirkham. Please don't turn me into a horse.”
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Raising an eye brow as the man mentioned that it was against the code. ”What are you going to do? Turn me in and have me turned into a Hag?” She shook her head then, smacking the backside of the horse before stepping away from him. ”He deserved it anyway, he killed a young lady after all.” The horse snorted once more and she turned her attention on him once more, she barely noticed the voice that spoke from his coat, though she didn’t mention it quite yet.

A smile came to her lips when he mentioned that she was talented, of course she was already aware of that, she wouldn’t be around now if she wasn’t talented. Of course he had already moved on to speak about what he had done that got him in so much trouble. Of course he was incredibly vague about the entire event and she still didn’t know what was going on.

”Uh-huh, well Erikham, I’m Thalia.” She turned around, walking to her cauldron once more, picking up a spoon and beginning to stir the mixture. ”And don’t worry, I won’t turn you into a horse, I don’t need another one of those.” She winked at the young man, resting a hand on her hip. ”Besides, turning another magic user is much more difficult than a human; I’ll need my strength in case your friends come by for another visit.”



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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.



Eirkham wouldn't have turned her in even if he knew where to do so. She had helped him after all--even if he had paid her for the assistance. She still could have turned him in and taken the money to boot. And maybe he had deserved it. Life has a horse had to be better than life in prison, right? He still kept a wary eye on the animal as he scooted around the area. He wasn't the best with horses. He knew quite well from personal experience that those hooves were incredibly painful.

He skipped over to look into the cauldron with interest. It had looked like she was making some sort of soup, but he couldn't be sure. He was fairly relieved to hear that she wouldn't be turning him into another pack animal. He would never get his work done that way! Who ever heard of a horse sorcerer?

"It's nice to meet you, Thalia." He said politely, flashing a toothy smile. "So, what do you do out here? Just travel around picking up random runaways fleeing the crown?" It was possible she could make a profit that way. He wasn't sure how often the hunters chased people through forests, but he'd lived in a tower for many years. For all he knew it was the basis of the town's economy.


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Thalia didn’t mention that the reason she had turned him was because he had ruined her night of companionship, the life of the young girl hadn’t bothered her as much as the fact that she would be without a companion that night. She smirked a bit at how skittish the warlock seemed to be around the horse, of course warlocks, wizards; they always seemed to be working for kingdoms. Their magic was used to keep peace, win wars, and provide justice. Witches were generally seen as a problem to the community, they were known for their angers, the threat of being transformed into a frog always looming over the head of those that angered them. They were seen as tricksters quite often, Thalia had been chased out of enough towns to know that hadn’t changed.

A chuckle escaped the witch’s lips when she was asked what she did. ”You are not the first runaway I have kept in my wagon, though it has been quite a while since I have needed to.” Stirring the pot once more, Thalia lifted the mixture to her lips tasting it, a smile curling up her lips; she walked off into her cabin once more, this time coming out with a small box. Opening the lid there were a number of spices she had collected during her travels, cooking was just like potion brewing.

”No, I travel and sell my potions.” She gestured toward her stand, before looking back at her cauldron. ”Mostly simple ones, for dreamless sleep or hair growth; though you would be surprised how many travelers find themselves in the need for a love potion.” She shook her head at that, Thalia knew of the effects of love potion, they never worked out in the end, but of course that was the customer’s problem. As long as Thalia received her payment, she didn’t care what they did with it. ”Once and a short while I have people come to me and request specific potions, those are some of my favorites.” Thalia handed him the spoon than. ”Stir this please while I add the rest of the ingredients.” With that she began to sprinkle her spices in, cutting up some more vegetables.


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Eirkham Delven of the Ardor Staff, Warlock of the West

…In training.



"Oh." He replied when she corrected him. He listened attentively as she described her usual customers. He had wondered what it would be like to be a wandering mage, free of towers and obligations. But he had never quite been adventurous enough to really want to try it. He didn't know what was out there to face.

"I always wondered what it would be like to be under a love potion. Probably feels really great before the shame and the head ache set in." He said idly, tilting his head and looking like he was very seriously pondering the idea. He'd never consider performing it on someone else (he had enough people accusing him of bewitching things without actually doing it!) but experimenting on his own self seemed like a decent way to go. It had only been him and his master for a while in that tower though, and he certainly had not wanted to be in love with him. He shuddered just to think of it.

He jumped when she asked him to take the spoon. He had drifted off in thought and forgotten about the cauldron. He took the ladle quickly and rotated it through the bubbling liquid with an intense look of concentration. He was known for screwing up the simplest things and he didn't want to do that here. Soup could be as tricky as any spell, and just as painful when escaping the confines of its container.

"Hey..." He began as his thoughts inevitably shifted away from his task. It might have been dangerous and made him nervous, but it was still stirring soup and that could only occupy him for so long. "Are there potions for, ah, soul extraction?" He asked tentatively. "I mean, not for stealing souls or anything!" He hastily tried to backtrack before she got the wrong idea, splashing a bit of the soup as he did so onto his hand. He hissed and went back to dutifully stirring. "I mean if someone's trapped in...in a thing...and you need to get them out."

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