The Four Corners of Arvum: Edge of the East
First Episode of an arc about self exploration and adventure.
March 27, 2020, 9:30 p.m.
Outside Arx - Crownlands near Arx - The Field
Comments and Log
Starting a journey of this nature in the winter is a bit risky. It definitely makes for more challenging travel. They are, however, starting off in the best direction. East means the ocean as they head out to go as far in that direction as they can. Of course Winter Storms are a thing, but as they set sail on the Misted Dawn, a galley of impeccable taste and a *very* shiny deck, the sea is calm, even the wind is a bit warm. At least compared to the frigid Arx.
The captain of the ship is a woman by the name of Goode Sal, a woman of improbable proportions, round and rough, with skin burnt by sun and wind, perpetually ruddy that clashes with her coppery hair. She has eyes that cannot settle on what color they are -- other than not brown -- and despite her girth, she is surprisingly nimble. What she may lack in classical beauty, she makes up for in raw charisma. There is something stupidly likeable about her. Plus she was one of the only -- the ONLY captain willing to sail east, given the impending Eurus fleet.
With the Mistward situated on the western cost, and the people partially relying on the sea, it has created a new interest in Shae. Her baby bump just visible under her clothes, she keenly watches Goode Sal, and the rest of her crew. Likely following them about and asking questions, a lot of questions. Curious about sailing and the sea, and wanting to learn.
And on deck, looking out over the waves at the prow is Amari, enjoying the wind even if it's not doing great things for her hair. That may be why she's patiently gathering it back with her hands, as if she means to put it up, but hasn't quite decided how yet. She wears something suitable for sailing, wide legged linen pants, Oakhaven leather boots and a loose knit tunic of olive green seatouched wool, cinched in at the waist where the black leather of her sword harness is tight. So far, she's been rather quiet, but not at all standoffish. At least that spares Goode Sal a load of questions from her.
Mirk stands near the front of the galley, both palms pressed the railing. He's dressed in his traveling leathers, charms in his hair being tugged slightly by the wind and swaying. He has a snakeskin satchel slung over his shoulder, and inside are splintered wooden shards, dozens of them. For now, he keeps the flap closed, wary of a sudden gust. He's watching Shae and her questions and her learning with a detached interest, clearly listening to most of it, though keeping quiet for much of the voyage.
Kedehern seems to be people watching the sailors, for a good portion of the journey. At the moment, however, he's near the prow, wind in his hair, looking out over the sea. Surely, land had to be close at hand, didn't it?
Goode Sal seems fine with the questions, answering most of them in a booming voice, all smiles until someone messes up and then she's even louder. Still, the ship is making decent time and before the week is out, there is a call down from the crow's nest, "Land! I see the fringe of the Cock's Tail! It's Geymeni island for sure!" Sal looks up and nods, calling back, "Well spotted Steev. C'mon down from there before you break your neck child." She looks to Shae and asides, "Poor fool is clumsy as a two footed cow." There is a shake of her head as she hauls herself up. "Well, we'll be there in an hour or more. Cookie is making scallop stew."
So much fish, while Shae might be fine with all the fish, the baby has had other ideas. For a moment Shae's face goes a little green, even as she beams a smile at Sal. Though the comment about Steev, did get a bit of a chuckle from the younger woman. "I know a cow, the grown mean fought over, Sheila. Though I'm not sure who taught them to fight, just slapping each other." A shake of her head there. "Sheila's a nice cow though, very sweet." No one wants to hear you go on about Sheila, Shae. "I heard once that a some ships have crows or ravens on board to help them find land, and of course cats to keep down any sort of vermin issues."
Amari hums a song she doesn't know the words to, apparently. It's something that sounds close to Brianne's Song but different, and more improvisational. She's been nice enough to not sing the one song she does know all the lyrics to by heart, so far, but she does stare at the back of Kedehern's head as if she's considering it. Maybe later. She settles on a simple high ponytail and is tying her hair back into place with a ribbon found in her satchel just as there's a call from the crow's nest. Her little song ends and she's quick to walk back to hear what Goode Sal has to say about it. "What's can we expect on Geymeni Island? Is there fresh water? Trees? Pirates?" She asks, because now she's suddenly full of questions, even if they're posed somewhat absently by the Keaton lady. Shae, once she's alongside her, is given a look of sympathy, and the back of her shoulder rubbed. "It'll be nice to stand on something solid again. You'll probably feel a little less..." Gross? Nauseous? She just waves her hand back and forth. Ooky.
Mirk turns away from the railing, once the announcement is made. He folds his arms over his chest, looks to Goode and asks, "Geymeni island? I confess I've never heard of our destination. But then, I've never been this far east before. Is it a large island, or...?" He cants his head for a moment and comments, "But I like the feel of the wind out here, so I won't be complaining, regardless of what we find." He glances aside at Kedehern, and chuckles at the other man. "Seems we have similar ideas about the wind, hm?"
Land! At the call, Kedehern tries to peer out over the waves, squinting his eyes, but... Hmmm. Maybe it's easier to see from the crow's nest? Likely. "Geymeni Island?" Kedehern echoes Mirk, apparently not too familiar with it. Looking to Shae, he seems to read her thoughts. "I'm sure we can find a brace of rabbits, once we make landfall," he murmurs. Looking to Mirk then, "It's certainly refreshing, at least. I'm just glad it seems I'm not overly prone to seasickness."
Those are a whole host of questions to be flung at one woman, and Goode Sal just laughs, shaking her head. "Ain't many heard of it, truthfully. Not much more than a couple miles round, but for all that it's a lovely little place. Used to dream of retiring there. Then my Brodi died, and well." Sal shrugs. "Still, it's a nice little plot. Cock's Tail cliffs on one end, nice little river up at the top, turns into a pretty set of falls. River snakes through a small grove of trees."
"Should have brought more ginger," Shae remarks to Amari, giving her cousin a smile. Shae's own face alight with curious interest about the island, giving a nod at Mirk and the others questions. Her nose though wrinkles up a little at the mention of rabbits, Shae looks to Kedehern, "I don't think it is the seafood, dearest. But food in general." And then Sal is answering all the questions! Shae's eyes light up at the mention of a small grove of trees. "Grove of trees? What's the grove like?" A glance to her companions there.
"I'm so sorry," Amari says first about Goode Sal's ruined retirement and lost Brodi, "It does sound quite lovely." What's said does answer her questions, save maybe if there are pirates or not, but she seems happy to assume not. Who would want to retire to a pirate haven? She nods to Shae and offers a sympathetic wrinkle of her nose, "We'll know for the next leg of our journey, if it's by sea." That said, she turns and is already going for her things. Sure, it may take another hour or more to get there, but she intends to be ready. Almost as if she's very eager to be off the boat or something.
"You have my sympathies," Mirk says to Goode Sal with a dip of his head, though he listens, too. Something about the description seems to meet his approval, as he nods his head. "Cliffs, falls, and a grove, hm? Earth, Wind, and Water. The only one missing is Fire, and I'm not nearly crass enough to suggest we remedy that." There's a brief smile near the end to make it clear the mention of Fire is a joke. "We could do far worse, I think." He nods his head to Shae, at her questions, indicating his desire to hear the answer as well.
A small nod from Kedehern to Shae, as she mentions she thinsk it's food in general. The smallest of frowns, as the man wishes he could do something for her discomfort. Instead, he just reaches for her hand and gives it a slight squeeze. "It sounds a lovely little place," he remarks to Goode Sal. "A shame it's not late spring, perhaps, to see it in it's finest."
Shae gets a little odd look, "It's a grove, so.. there are trees. Not much beyond that." Sal looks over to the others and lifts a shoulder, "It was a long time ago, but you have my thanks. And no, last I was here, no pirates." The mention of elements gets another odd look, but in the end, Sal just shakes her head and says, "We'll be there in about an hour. Best get yer things together, whatever you want to take with you. We're only staying a day, yes?"
There is a nod to Sal at her answer, and then a smile to Mirk, and then, "Well, I look forward to seeing it, hopefully we will have a chance to visit it." Shae remarks. At the question of staying a day, she nods a little, but looks toward the others, as well to see if they had other ideas or plans. "I'm going to go get my gear," and then off she goes to do just that. Collecting armor, weapons, and her pack. As well as her animals.
Amari is already on it, and is soon back at the railing but now with her cloak on, her bow over her shoulder and a basket in hand that she is totally not going to forget on the beach when they all wander into a tunnel. Not this time! Goode Sal's question is given an answer, "A day and a night, possibly. We'd like to pray to Mangata and Petrichor while we're here, where it's wildest and untouched, and the sea and wind are all around." She explains with a light smile. It seems a more palatable explanation than anything to do with elements, after all. Her companions are looked to, checking with them to see if there's any objections, her brow lifted. "Does that sound good, Mirk?"
"Apologies. Superstition comes with the territory," Mirk says, fingers brushing against the shamanistic charms in his beard. "Don't mind me." He chuckles and shakes his head. "A day should be more than enough," he confirms for Amari. There's a nod of his head to Shae. "I hope we have a chance to see that grove. I'm curious what we might find this far away from civilization." He already has everything he needs on him, however, used to traveling light from years on the road. He does fetch Aegis, the dog sleeping on a quiet corner of the deck, but that's all.
Seeing as the others seem to have explanations in hand, Kedehern heads below with his wife, to help pack, and soon enough, he's back topside, awaiting landfall. "Does it have an actual port, or does the ship run shallow enough to make land without one?" he asks of Goode Sal, once he's returned, curious if they're going to need to get into a row boat or not.
"We'll be dropping anchor off shore and Sethan will row you to shore. Expect to get your feet wet!" With that, Sal retreats to get things underway. The next hour passes swiftly and before long the party finds themselves in a small rowboat, the firstmate Sethan working the oars as he maneuvers them into the tide, riding the waves to shore.
The beach is pale and sandy, a few large shells dotting the stretch of pearly sand. Grass lines the beach, and only a few yards past that is a flat meadow, across from which is the start of a grove of old, ancient trees. Short with gnarly branches, they appear to be some sort of fruit tree, but given the season, the branches are all quite bare. Visible over the treetops to the east are a series of hills that rise to gray cliffs, a triple tier of waterfalls, the entire east coast of the island a high plateau.
"Thank you, Sethan," Shae says as she carefully gets out of the boat. Always a bit tricky with her bum leg, the dogs already sniffing at the grass and then the trees. Shae follows after them, curious about the grove and the trees. She carefully looks them over to see what sort of fruit trees they are.
Amari takes off her boots and stockings on the way, rolls up her pant legs and is more than happy to go over the side once the water is low enough to wade in. Having to carry her boots, and her picnic basket, she's of no use at all dragging the boat closer to shore, but she does offer Shae a shoulder to use. Barf scrabble jumps out himself, lands with a tremendous splash and marches himself to the beach to shake off. Her goat waits until it's much shallower before springing into the surf and following. "It is lovely." She decides at once before looking to the others. "Shall we go straight for the grove?"
"You'll hear no objections from me," Mirk says, wide eyed at the sight of the grove. "Oh, it's a shame we couldn't see these in autumn. We'll have to come back someday, if the kind captain can be persuaded again, but that's a plan for another time..." As he speaks, he's pacing forwards, Aegis at his heel. "Through the Grove and work our way up to the cliffs, perhaps? I want to see the view from there."
Mirk checked mana + empathy at difficulty 45, rolling 8 lower.
Shae checked mana + empathy at difficulty 45, rolling 2 lower.
Amari checked mana + empathy at difficulty 45, rolling 18 lower.
Kedehern, of course, helps Shae out of the boat, as a good husband should. Reaching down to ruffle Alix and Daegmund's ears, once he splashes into the water, and then wades to shore, helping pull the boat to the shore, unless Sethan is desiring to row it back. Once on dry land, he lets his eyes cast about the isle, getting a feel for it.
Kedehern checked mana + empathy at difficulty 45, rolling 38 lower.
The wind rustles through the grass in a sharp gust, sending Amari's ponytail flying forward to either side of her face, while Mirk's charms shiver and chime in his beard. The tree branches groan and creak in the wake of the wind, but it fades as swiftly as it arrived.
Daegmund is staying right next to Shae for the moment, while Brimbar sniffs about at the roots of the old, ancient trees. "Hopefully these trees won't swollow us up," Shae comments, a little smile there, making a little joke, though it was probably a poor one. Frowning a touch after it, she gives a little shrug to herself. Turning she glances to Mirk, "That sounds like a good plan to me." And then she is looking over the trees some more, reaching out to brush fingers over the bark.
"I would love to see the waterfall the captain mentioned." Amari is saying when a sharp gust of wind sends her ponytail forward and to either side of her face. With a shiver and a surprised laugh, she flips it back again, and pulls it through her hand to smooth down the worst of the flyaways. Can't go wandering around a grove with wild hair now. There might be handsome pirates to beguile hiding in the trees. "I'm going to gather some dead fall and driftwood, for a small fire." She explains as she pulls on her boots again and takes a snaking, winding path up towards the grove so she can pounce on any loose wood she can pick up on the way.
Mirk lifts his head at the sudden gust of his wind, his eyes tracking the rustle in the grass, as if seeing something. There's a touch of a smile on his lips, almost too subtle to be sure of what it is. "Beautiful," he murmurs, though what he emans is up to interpretation. He paces forwards, towards the grove. He places his hand flat against the trunk of a tree, looking up into its branches for a moment, and then pushes on. "Since the Captain and her crew are elsewhere: What do you all feel in a place like this? What do you see? What do you understand?" He sounds curious, but there's clearly more than that lurking underneath the words.
"At the moment? Cold," Kedehern remarks to Mirk as to what he feels. "Though I wager that's not quite what you were looking for," still gazing about, some. "Through the grove, and up to the cliffs seems a good start, yes."
"Safe," Shae immediately replies, "Protected, watched over, at least when I am in the woods, and forests. Like here in the grove." She shares with a warm smile, as she wanders around the grove. Touching the old trees and greeting them, like they are old friends, eventually she looks up into the canopy of the trees. "A prayer to Petrichor and the spirits of the trees might be good to do here." Shae comments out loud sharing her thoughts with the group, still smiling warmly. Though she tugs her cloak a little bit tighter around herself, to help keep the wind out.
Amari dumps an armful of sticks and branches on the ground, then sets her basket down next to them. The answers to Mirk's question prompts an amused smile, and hers is merely turning his around on him, "What do you feel in a place like this, Lord Mirk? And here, we're sure to end up a little cold and wet, I think. It will be nice to have a fire when we get back." She straightens up and stretches her arms over her head, fingers extended up toward the sky and sighs. "I feel good, and wild. I'll meet you all at the top of the cliff." With a flash of a grin, she turns and runs for it.
Mirk smirks, slightly, at Kedehern's response, and listens to the others thoughtfully. "I ask because I read recently that there's two qualities a druid must have: To truly know themselves and to truly know the world around them, to understand the stories buried within the land and sea and skies." He nods his head. "As to what I feel: Thank you. To the spirits of stone and soil and earth, thank you. To the spirits of root and tree and brush, thank you. To the spirits of sky and wind and storm, thank you. We walk in your domain, we see your ancient homes, and we feel awed and thankful for the experience."
Mirk checked mana + occult at difficulty 25, rolling 101 higher. Mirk rolled a critical!
The grove is thick with trunks, their bare branches reaching for the sky, easily snagging on Amari's cloak, tangling in her ponytail. the grass is brown and sparse, cold under foot, though the trees begin to spread further apart at the base of the hills. A waterfall spills down from a height of twenty or so feet, another tier about fifteen feet above that.
The wind rises again, a faint gale that spins around Mirk, sending his talismans and charms singing once more. The breeze ripples the surface of the river, sending little dust devils to spinning along the bank. The wind seems to be playing with Mirk, almost seeming to be following him.
"Well..." Kedehern watches as Amari runs off, and looks back to the firewood she collected. "I think I know myself better now, than when we'd first started looking into all of this, certainly," he states, as he reaches down to stack the firewood in an orderly pile. Looking to Shae, "Shall we start the climb to the cliffs, while there's still day light, dear?"
Shae checked mana + theology at difficulty 25, rolling 15 lower.
Amari checked mana + occult at difficulty 25, rolling 7 lower.
There is a bit of a grin as Amari goes running off, watching after her cousin for a little bit. Shae's amber gaze turning to Mirk, a nod and soft smile to his response as to how he feels. Her fingers touching the small Petrichor charm she wears on a leather braclet. "It is always good to be thankful for that which the land provides, and to respect it in kind." Smiling a bit more she nods to Kedehern, "Yes," she replies, a hand resting against one of the trees for a moment. Glancing about, she spies Brimbar, as she pets Daegmund's head. "Stay here and keep Brimy out of trouble Daegmund."
Amari's cloak is discarded when it becomes snagged, but a tangled ponytail is another matter. She twists more carefully out from that branch and then starts running again, now with broken twigs for decorations. At least, when she was stuck, she got to hear Mirk's prayer. Barf gives a single bark and gives chase, the goat comes after. At the waterfall, Amari loses her tunic, because there's really nothing less comfortable than soaked wool and she has a lighter linen shirt beneath. She climbs on in the mist of the falls, and holds her hand under the water until she has enough to sip from her cupped palm. Marigold and Barf, once they've caught up take a more direct approach and lap from the churning basin. "Well," Amari says, "That's very refreshing, thank you... water." Not a very compelling prayer, that. There's a look down towards the grove to see if anyone else is making their way out, then she's off and looking for a path up to the cliffs.
Mirk tilts his head, as if to hear some distant sound, and laughs. There's a slight angle to his body, as if turned towards an unseen companion, listening to something unheard. But he picks up his pace a little, following after Shae and Amari and Kedehern. "We've seen the grove. We've seen earth. And now we come to water. Hello, waterfall." His eyes go from the base of it all the way to top of it, taking it in, and he whistles. "We'll have to give our ship captain a little bonus, for finding us an island like this."
Kedehern's brow raises a touch, as Amari takes a cold winter shower. "Definitely going to be needing that fire," he remarks, in a low tone. Looking around then, "Still... It is rather lovely, isn't it?" as they make their way through. Moving to help clear a path for the others, taking it all in. "The cliffs would be air, then, I take it?" to Mirk. Then, "Though I could see them being Earth as well, were one at the base, rather than tops, I suppose."
The water is frigid, the whole place is cold -- there's no snow, but it is still winter. The water burbles, some of the spray seeming to collect into a thicker mist around Mirk. The droplets, moved by that circling gale catch the thin sunlight and cast rainbows over the man.
Picking up Amari's wet tunic she finds a branch to hang it over, to help dry it out some. Glancing up as her cousin seems to have found a path to head up to the cliffs above them. Shae's gaze turns toward Mirk, smiling, "It looks as if you have a friend or, perhaps a few." Watching the water and mist, as well as the circling gale around him. "Oh look, it's making rainbows above you," she says brightly, a sudden beam of a smile. Pulling out her waterskin to fill it with fresh water, "Thank you for you life giving gift." She murmurs to the water, and then she looks to the cliff, her jaw setting a bit as she looks for a good path up.
"It would be a nice place to live, if you liked to eat fish and were tired of other people, or you were Mirk." Amari calls over, her voice pitched high enough to be heard over the falls, but not much louder. Her hair is already damp, as is one sleeve of her linen undershirt all the way to the shoulder, but she doesn't seem to mind yet. She will later, when she's frozen to death. "I like it here, but I don't feel any greater understanding or connection. I remain, I'm afraid, a vague swirl of undecided elemental potential. What about you all?" That she all asks over her shoulder, as she picks out a way up that's not too difficult. Her dog still needs convincing. "C'mon Barf!"
Mirk blinks at Shae and says, "Is it?" He glances up. "So it is." He chuckles and shakes his head. "The wind is excited that we're here. It recognizes me, at least a little." His smile doesn't fade this time, remaining there, subtle but fixed on his expression. Some of the usual stoicism is fading away, and along with it some of the stress of recent weeks. He approaches Amari, and suggests, "Try. Just a little. Try to open yourself up and feel the wind and the water. Feel the waterfall overhead and the soil beneath your feet. Physically, if not otherwise." He waves a hand in her direction and whispers a quiet prayer, the words indistinct.
Hearing Mirk's words to Amari, Kedehern tries a bit, himself, as well. Concentrating some on the wind on his skin, the earth beneath his feet, as he closes his eyes, to try and hone in on his senses of touch, taste, and smell.
Kedehern checked perception + occult at difficulty 30, rolling 14 lower.
"Alright. I suppose I hadn't been very purposefully open." Amari replies to Mirk, but she does so on the move and with a mildly pensive expression. One hand comes to rest on the pommel of the sword at her hip, with her thumb running lightly over the iridescite heart inset upon it, and the other goes to her hair. She tugs the ribbon free and shakes out her ponytail as she wanders, and walks herself right out of her boots as she does. Barefoot, she can better feel the cold earth and damp stone, and the water that rushes by to pour out over the cliff into the falls. The green silk ribbon she wraps once around her finger so she can hold it out like a pennant for the wind to grab at it and try to steal it away. Meanwhile, she whistles softly, adjusting her tone until it's nearest the sound of the wind gusting by her.
Mirk laughs at something unheard, and shakes his head. "Because that is its nature, just as it is your nature to be the intangible," he whispers to the wind. "Come, and I'll take you all the way to the cliffs. Open sky, where you can go wherever you will and play to your heart's content." Not yet, however. He walks around to the others, and says, "Talk yourself through it. Take what was intangible in your mind and make it solid. And if I can, I'll help guide you." He doesn't sound at all certain that he can, but he's trying.
Amari checked intellect + occult at difficulty 25, rolling 8 higher.
"...Nothing," Kedehern murmurs, after a good while, perhaps sounding a touch disappointed. Maybe he just wasn't cut out for this Druidism business. "Perhaps air and water just... Aren't for me," he says, instead, however, trying to keep a good face. "The cliffs? Might as well, I suppose... At worst, we get to see a nice view, I imagine."
"No, nothing really!" Shae shouts up at Amari, regarding her question about feeling any sort of connection. "Perhaps I'm just a vague swirl of undecided mess." Shae says, looking around and then back at the trees and grove behind them. And then back to Kedehern, reaching out to take his hand and give it a little squeeze, "I bet there is a good path up around here, probably just hidden by some of the foliage." Shae says with a smile, as she looks for a more stable, solid path up. Wanting to be careful, what with her bad leg and a baby on board. And once she finds it, she would start to head up it with Kedehern.
Mirk follows the path forwards, up to a promonatory that's clogged with a rockfall. "Over here. But we'll need to earn it," he says to Shae and Kedehern. "You'll need to make it yours. You'll need to clear the way so that the wind can flow." That said, he grabs small rocks and starts moving them aside, prepared to clear the path with his own hands. "This is devotion," he says, continuing whether or not the others help him in his labors.
Mirk checked stamina + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 13 higher.
Amari's quiet up there, perhaps trying to act on Mirk's advice or just enjoying the breeze. It's not until she hears rocks shifting as Mirk begins to work that she even opens her eyes again. "Don't the rocks get a say? They might like it there." She argues but not with any serious conviction. She does however pad over and pick up the rocks Mirk moves to pile them into a rough cairn. That seems to satisfy her that they're not being abused by the eviction.
Amari checked stamina + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 5 higher.
Kedehern squeezes Shae's hand in return, and up the head. As they come across the clog of rockfall, Kedehern studies it a moment, and then... Well, he gets to work. This was something he was familiar with, at least. As he starts to clear stones away, perhaps feeling a bit more comfortable with the stolid solidity of the rock. Hard work. Something he'd been taught long ago, and was made comfortable with, indeed.
As the rocks are moved, the wind begins whipping through the revealed eye through the rock, creating a joyful whistling sound. It only grows louder, sounding almost like laughter.
Kedehern checked stamina + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 47 higher.
Shae checked composure + occult at difficulty 25, rolling 7 higher.
Kedehern checked stamina + occult at difficulty 25, rolling 14 higher.
Not wanting to crowd the group as they work to move the rocks, Shae moves to sit next to a nearby tree. Taking a moment to rest her leg, a bit sore from the climb up. A hand resting against the tree as she closes her eyes for a bit, perhaps reflecting on the tree, the ground, the rocks, the wind... her thoughts coming back to the tree and the feel of it's bark against her skin. Eventually a little smile forms on her lips, "It's purring," She says with a touch of wonder in her voice, "well sort of..." a little laugh there and then she hugs the tree.
Amari snorts softly, amused by something even though nobody's really said a joke, and Barf is just sitting there looking at her as if this is one of the least interesting things he's ever watched her do. Pile rocks? He's not even helping in the least, and barely supervising. Neither is Marigold, for that matter, she's found some weeds to nibble on. The cairn the Keaton eventually constructs looks terribly unbalanced, but she still brushes her hands off and looks entirely satisified with it all the same. As she does, she laughs under her breath and glances over at Mirk. "Hey, Bellows man. I think the winds are pleased at least. Sorry, stones. I tried, but I suppose you ought to be used to wind and water beating on you as they please." She pats one of the topmost on her cairn before stepping back, and turning to observe the new eye, and the wind blowing through it in a whistle. She holds her ribbon up again, to see better which way, and how strong the gusts are moving, curious but not so absorbed that she doesn't hear Shae. "What's purring? The tree?"
The wind plays through the eye of the stone, rattling some of the stones in that cairn. and that misty swirl of fog escapes its twirl around Mirk, though heavy droplets sparkle in his hair and beard.
Mirk laughs at Amari's choice in address, and says, "You finally heard it. The wind is here, speaking all the while. All you have to do is know how to listen." He looks to Shae, raising an eyebrow, and then glances aside at Amari and Kedehern, as if to see if they hear it. "Purring, hmm? Well, then. I think it safe to say that you're all on the right track. And now..." A little quieter near the end, a little more serious. He reaches to his satchel, and finally undoes the flap, so that it isn't fully blocked from the wind anymore. He withdraws a hand with a single long wooden shard, held tight in one hand. "As you have introduced yourself to me, so I introduce your kin. I hope he'll be recovered enough to dance with you soon."
Stones great and small, find themselves slowly uprooted, and set out of the way as Kedehern toils, seeming at ease with the laborous task. As he does, there's that's not quite a smile that eases onto his lips. "There, there, old chap, it's nothing you've not weathered before." He looks up then, hearing Shae. "That's... Quite amazing, actually," he says, smiling now more fully.
When that fragment of wood is revealed, there is a flutter at the edge, twitching slightly as if the wind were trying to lift it off Mirk's palm. To those who can hear them, the voices of the wind are delighted, laughing as that pale golden gale tugs and plays with the shard of wood.
The stones settle under Kedehern's hand, seeming to become more stable, secure in their place.
As for Shae and her purring tree, the sound continues, in sync with her heartbeat.
The rest of the day is spent in quiet communion, it is not a huge success, but it is definitely a beginning.
Amari picks up some smaller pebbles to put atop the cairn that can be easily blown off, and one fist sized stone is found and her hair ribbon tied around it, leaving one long end to catch and flutter in the breeze. That's the offering she'll leave behind for the wind on the cliffs. She flashes a quick smile to Mirk as he introduces the wind to that small but significant piece of wood, then Kedehern and Shae get a broader, warmer smile before she's wandering off on her own. She'll spend the rest of the day exploring the small island with Barf and Marigold in tow, singing or whistling as she feels like it and it won't disturb anyone else as they do their own communing. Nor does she spurn any company for that matter. Her mood is good and fine.
Mirk closes his eyes, drinking it in for a moment. He enjoys his day of communing with the elements, and when it's finally over and he has to leave, he makes sure to bring mementos: A pouch full of soil and a vial full of water from the waterfall. What they're for, he keeps to himself, but he smiles as he collects them.
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