A new day, a new arrival

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A new day, a new arrival

Post  Soraya on Fri May 31, 2013 12:32 am

Mirzan rode with Nip along the paths circling Nopalo's territory. The vampires had told him of them, and right now he just wanted time to think. He was going to be a father! Well... if it survived. If Rowanna survived--something that worried him greatly. She hadn't been eating well, let alone for two like she should. And with his bloodline, death on the child or wife's account wasn't unusual with the... things... his magic-tainted blood produced. Something with horns, hooves, or wings didn't emerge without damage to the mother. Often it could be too twisted or foreign that it would die before birth. It was a saddening, worrying thought. But he wanted to be a father, if he could!

The road lay ahead, and Nip paused, sniffing the air. Heavy as his feet were, their tread was quiet, much like the elephants of exotic lands. The massive creature's horned head turned, snuffling with interest at the winds, and Mirzan froze, listening like those perked ears. Something or someone was around, not some mere animal. Nip was always suspicious, but Mirzan was inclined to trust the warbeast in strange lands like this.


----------


Well, it hadbeen a beautiful day. Ideal for Milo and his wagon to travel toward what he hoped would be a resting way-point for him and his overworked mule. He'd been on the road several days now, cart full of supplies and personal items he would use on whatever work this next venture might offer.

The healer had been edging his cart forward, whistling along with the singing birds, when his cart wheel had hit a pot hole... hard. His wagon had lurched to the side, sending him tumbling. Cursing under his breath, he'd risen and made his way to the wheel to inspect the damage when he'd heard the voice.

"Put 'em up, Patsy," the gruff, low and threatening voice had said. It had taken a few moments for Eramilo to register what had been said, and the bespectacled man had stared, blinking, up at the tall figure that appeared before him.

Eramilo sighed deeply, before answering, "I assure you, sir, there is nothing here that would be of use to you. You would need special training to know what to do with any of these things."

"Don't mean I can't sell it, though, does it?" the gruffy man answered. He nodded behind Milo, to indicate the other four men emerging around him, all holding a threatening stance.

"Oh my," the healer sighed again, reaching up into his cart to pull out his staff. "You really do not want to do this," he tried to reason. "I fully realize I do not instill a sense of threat upon men such as yourselves," he continued, turning back toward the gruffy man, "but I assure you, you would prefer not to provoke me. Bad things happen when I am provoked." Even if he didn't want them to, he added silently to himself.

"PUT THEM UP!" the gruffy man yelled, finally losing his patience, or so it appeared.

Before he could respond, the sound of thunder reached Milo's ears, which caused the healer to look around in confusion. It was a clear blue day... "Odd," he reflected to himself, "I don't think I've ever had /that/ particular side effect before." Before he could further comment, however, the trembling ground suddenly ceased, and a threatening voice reached his ears, though this time it seemed they were on his side.


------------

Voices, human ones more or less. They were in the direction of the ands just outside Nopalo's border, according to Nips ears. With a sigh, Mirzan turned Nip to head that way, setting his loaded crossbow on his lap. Those voices rose, and he shook the reins for Nip to pick up the pace. They smashed through the trees to emerge into the road like a bear leaping from brush, and Mirzan drew rein to glare at the bandits around the stranger and his cart. "You may want to leave this fellow alone," he suggested. "You might make my mount mad otherwise. He has a habit of pounding annoyances into pulp."

Nip snorted and lowered his head, brandishing his horns like a bull.


"How marvelous a creature!" Milo commented, staring up at the huge beast, apparently having lost interest in the men threatening violence against him.

The bandits, however, were not impressed so much as startled, perhaps even frightened. "Who th' hell are you?" one of the men asked. At the same time, a third man was apparently startled into inadvertent action, an arrow released from his crossbow in MIrzan's direction. The gruffy man, for his part, might have hoped for a peaceful resolution (he hardly wanted to face down whatever that was) but knew that option was closed to him the moment the arrow flew.

Without further thought, the thug drew his sword.

Mirzan hissed as the arrow slammed into his arm--he hadn't been expecting trouble after the vampires had cleared the area last night, so he'd left his mail at the inn. But he raised the crossbow with the other hand, leaving the reins in his lap, and shot back. "Wrong move," he snapped. Nip charged. The warbeast flung his head to the side at one of the bandits, shaggy coat rippling as he aimed at slamming the swordsman with his hard horned head hard enough to send him flying.

The crossbowed-man was hit cleanly in the shoulder by Mirzan’s projectile. Never having been a man of truly courageous disposition, that was enough to send him running in the opposite direction, abandoning his comrades. The man with the sword had time to swing once at Nip before being sent flying through the brush. A third man seemed to choose the charge approach, though he charged at Milo. The healer in question grimaced as he stepped aside, using his staff to entangle the man's feet, sending him sprawling. "Now, really, I would prefer not to have to patch you all up after this. Pray, take your good fortune as offered by the man and go."

This advice, however, was apparently not heard by the last two men, who were busy charging at Nip as well. "Aim for 'is feet!" one cried.

Nip got a cut on his head, but the bone was far more solid than your average animal's considering he rammed through stone walls during a seige. The warbeast was clever enough to know his legs were targets--it was obviously the first thing smaller creatures would go for. So Nip swung his heavy head and sharp horns in dangerous arcs to protect himself, feet moving to step high so they might land on /top/ of anything aimed at them. He was too heavy for most blades to endure bearing his weight, after all, and gods forbid someone's foot was caught underneath! Mirzan dropped his used crossbow to the ground and instead drew one of his sabers, lashing out wih it to help Nip against the last two with the ease of long practice.

"Really, it is probably a much better idea to get up and fetch your friend who was flung into the woods," Milo continued to reason with the one he had tripped. His eyes, however, were riveted on the huge beast as it flung its head around, and he shook his head as the last two charged. "Some really are fool-hardy, aren't they?" He barely turned to look as the man he had tripped indeed followed his advice and ran into the woods, leaving the last two behind to fend for themselves against Nip

One of the two reached Nip first, swiping at the huge... whatever that thing was, with his sword. The first blow landed, he thought (and hoped), though his second strike went awry as the dancing beast stomped upon the blade, breaking it in half.

The second was attacking Nip with his sword raised in the air - Clearly he had not had gotten any formal schooling on proper form. He hadn't even tried to actually clash blades with Mirzan, though the impact sent vibrations all the way up into his jaw.

Nip bellowed as the blade cut his side, though it wasn't a major wound with his thick fur. The angry warbeast snapped at the now unarmed bandit with strong teeth before brandishing deadly horns at him again. Mirzan lashed again with his blade at the other man and added a kick from his higher vantage point.

The mercenary was glad to see the man who'd been under attack was at least holding his own with one of the last bandits, who smartly seemed to decide to leave.

Mirzan's kick hit the man square in the jaw, sending him sprawling. There he remained, unmoving, knocked unconscious as his last-standing friend was sent sailing much in the same way and direction the leader of their small troupe had been sent by Nip's swiping.

Milo, for his part, remained standing in an almost dazed manner after the man who was sent flying. He spent a few moments in silence before finally returning his attention to the man and beast who had come to his aide. "Good day!" he greeted. "It seems I owe you many thanks, sir."

Snorting, Nip set to tearing up a nearby tree with his teeth and horns and feet to vent his remaining anger while his rider wiped his blade on his thigh and slid it back in its sheath. Then the mercenary glanced back over at the stranger, not about to dismount until Nip was calmer. "Hello. Pardon, but Nip is a beast designed for war, so it takes him a moment to calm... Are you all right?"

"Just a bit of a twisted ankle from the fall... and a broken cart wheel," the stranger man answered Mirzan calmly. "Better than your shoulder, I should expect," he stated. He blinked at Nip a moment. "I should see to you both, at least, in thanks." Still, he made no effort to move toward Nip, heeding Mirzan's warning about approaching the creature. "It truly is a fascinating animal... I can't see I've ever seen one like it before."

The mercenary grimaced, but nodded, good hand going to touch the arrow gingerly. "I wasn't expecting trouble when patrolling Nopalo's lands. Others had done so before me, after all, and cleared away trouble. But I think it'd be best if we both get back to the Inn--my fiancée is wonderful with herbs. If I have Nip keel down, can you load your things and climb on? Or if not, if you can climb on we can head for the Inn and sed help to collect your things."

"Oh," Milo smiled, "I suspect I've forgotten to properly introduce myself again. It seems a habit of mine." He finally ventured a few steps forward enough to extend a hand up at Mirzan in greeting. "My name is Eramilo... though most call me simply Milo. I'm sure your fiancee would be a delightful help, though if it helps, I myself am a healer. I may be able to tend to this wound more quickly than she, if you'd allow it. But first, yes, I suspect we should..." He glanced back at his things, scratching the back of his head without ever actually having given Mirzan the chance to shake his hand. "Perhaps I'll collect my most important things and get you back to that lady of yours..."

-----------------

Rowanna had gone out not long after Mirzan had left to gather some fresh plants and herbs. It was bright and sunny out, and she had no reason to think there would be any danger in broad daylight.

She'd made certain to tell Shayori - the only other person in the common room at the time - where she was going, just in case Mirzan grew concerned at finding her absent upon his return.

Something rustled in the brush by Rowanna, and whistled brightly before scampering up a tree to peer at her. Snap! The lizard whistled again.
Rowanna looked up from the delicate root she was carefully digging out with her dagger. "Snap? What is it? Where is Mirzan?"

------------


"A Healer, huh?" Mirzan nudged for Nip to kneel and moved to shake that offered hand with his good one, though he never actually got the chance. "In that case, better you than her. She's pregnant and I don't want her working harder than necessary. Can you help me get this arrow out?"

"Pregnant!" Milo exclaimed, pushing his spectacles back up to their appropriate resting position after having them slip down. "Congratulations!" The man grinned up at Mirzan unmoving several long moments before realizing he should be making use of himself. "Arrow, yes, I can take care of that for you. Now, rather than later I presume?" he asked, picking up several bags from his cart and carrying them back toward Nip, though a limp was noticeable. He stopped short as he came face-to-face with the huge creature, apparently at a loss. "Um... My apologies, but how exactly am I expected to... um..."

Mirzan laughed. "First let him taste you. Mind you, that hurts but it won't break anything. Let me get down, too. I can help load it all and you up once my arm's better." Swinging a leg over Nip's neck, he slid expertly to the ground, grimacing as the arrow was jarred in his shoulder.


----------


Snap bobbed on the tree, then scampered around it before bounding onto another trunk further away.

Rowanna rose carefully, placing her things back into the folds of her cloak, and followed Snap. Shifting slightly, she breathed in deeply, searching for his scent as well.

Snap paused to lick the air, then leapt to the ground to scurry noisily (on purpose) towards her master and Nip. Voices were ahead...

Rowanna followed in Snap's wake, mindful to make some sound as well so that none would be startled by her presence.

-------------


Milo watched Mirzan descend, his feature crinkling into an air of disapproval. "I am able-bodied, sir, I can load my own things. I would much prefer you allow me to do that than to overexert yourself, wounded as you are. But, erm, how exactly does this... him... er, her?" Again Milo scratched his head, "How does your beast 'taste,' one, exactly?"

Nip glared at Milo sidelong. "He bites, like anything else does," Mirzan laughed. "And once you heal me, me helping won't be an exertion, will it? Besides, you can't carry much with that ankle. Once you Heal me, I can get all your stuff and your mule and we can leave jus the cart behind for those bandits, and salvage that later. Oh don't mind Nip--he may draw blood, but he won't rip the arm off if I approve of you."


"And if he doesn't approve?" Milo asked, eyebrow raised. The healer sighed, grimaced, and shook his head. "Well, now, let me have a look at you, then," he said, choosing not to think of the more unpleasant possibilities that awaited him after this task was done. Had he just jumped out of the proverbial pan and into the fire with this? Either way this man had helped and was now injured. "It's clean, at least," Milo stated, peering closely at the point of entry. "Must be painful, though."

"I've a tincture to numb it." Rowanna, who had just appeared, offered softly, removing the small vial from her cloak as she approached, her hearing still benefiting from the partial shift.

It is," Mirzan agreed, making a face. "Just get it out, okay? I've been hit before, but that doesn't mean I like it." But Nip's head rose and turned for the woods, and Mirzan stiffened. "Company...? Ah." He relaxed a moment later when Nip did. Snap's familiar whistle emerged, heralding the lizard's arrival. She scurried over in a brightly-colored blur to climb onto Nip's hump and chitter brightly at them all.

As though he hadn't even realized someone else had arrived, Milo kept peering at the wound. "Willow bark?" he asked, thrusting a hand outward to reach for whatever container might hold the useful salve.

Mirzan flashed Rowanna a smile as she arrived. "Milo, meet my fiancee, Rowanna. Rowanna, Milo--a Healer. He had some bandit trouble, so we helped out."

Rowanna hesitated uncertainly for the barest moment, then pressed the container into Milo's hand.

"Pardon?" Milo blinked, finally looking up at Mirzan's words. "Oh... Oh! Yes, quite!" he said, smiling. "I hear congratulations are in order. He mentioned you had an aptitude for herbs. I always enjoy meeting others who can teach me new healing methods. Well-met!"

Keeping her eyes downcast, Rowanna nodded shyly in greeting. Carefully, she shifted back, allowing the faint glow to fade from her eyes, then glanced back up at Mirzan.

The mercenary grimaced, waiting for the arrow to be removed. "Sorry, love. Thought it would be smartest to have him handle it as soon as possible. We have to get him and his stuff back to the Inn after and send someone for the cart later--some of the bandits fled, but that may not be for long."

The healer accepted Rowanna's container, opened it and smelled. "Not willow bark... Is that Valerian I smell? Interesting..." He peered into the pot a few moments, before coming back to himself. "Yes. Arrow." He cleared the clothing around the wound as best he could and began dolling out generous amounts of it onto the wound. As he worked, he continued chattering, "I should be most interested in knowing what other items you've put together... I may be able to use some of your suggestions to improve my own works..."


"I thought he might prefer it better numbed than willow would do." Rowanna supplied quietly, offering him strips of cloth, wound around calendula and marigold. "To stop the bleeding." She dug into her cloak pockets until she found more cloth strips to bandage the wound with.

"Just get it over with," Mizan grumbld, gritting his teeth, though it did indeed feel better. He didn't think lingering was wise and the pain was still enough to make him irritable.

Rowanna watched closely, but made no effort to take over, certain that Mirzan would be better served in the hands of a true healer.

Milo let out a gleeful laugh. "She's quite ingenious, this one," he beamed, though his countenance returned to a serious one as he peered at the wound again. "Right, well, I do apologize. As good a job as this likely has done, you'll likely still feel..." He trailed off and, as swiftly as he could, removed the arrow's shaft, breaking it from the arrowhead. "Yes, that was the easy..." he again trailed off as he dug around his cloak, which appeared to have several pockets. "Here we go." He produced an odd-looking tool. "I make my own inventions as well," he said proudly. Without another word, he used this tool to work out the arrowhead a little at a time. The process wasn't pleasant, but it allowed him to minimize the damage additionally done to Mirzan's muscle and bone during the removal process. It was only a few minutes before he gladly called, "Wonderful! I hadn't expected it to work so well." He paused and looked over at Rowanna and Mirzan apologetically. "I hadn't actually tried that before. Milo then used Rowanna's offered strips of garment to slow the bleeding. "I'll be able to use some magical healing on you as well, if you don't object," he said, peering at Mirzan over his glasses, "But it's still better to minimize the initial damage for things to heal more quickly."

The mercenary grunted and groaned quietly, clenching his jaws as the arrowhead was worked out. It certainly wasn't pleasant! Blood started to soak the front of his tunic. "All right--whatever... You can give Rowanna the rundown after we're done. Just do what you have to, okay?" he muttered, looking a bit pale.

Rowanna's eyes went wide at the announcement that he hadn't tried the item he'd used Mirzan. She moved quickly to staunch the flow of blood from the wound, and offer support watching the newcomer carefully.

"Yes, well, here we go now. Pardon, lady, I do need a bit of room for this," Milo said, a bit crestfallen that his ingenuity was apparently not as appreciated here as he had hoped. Holding one of Rowanna's bags, he set his hand firmly against Mirzan's shoulder, and closed his eyes. Under his breath, he began mumbling strange words, odd words that clearly held power. As he spoke, it was as though the air around him became denser, heavier and perhaps even darker, though that would seem odd for healing magic to be used. Still, as he spoke these words, MIrzan would feel his shoulder beginning to mend, the magic doing the work it was intended to do.

Rowanna looked uncertain. She wasn't comfortable with the way this felt at all.

Nip snorted, alarmed by Milo's aura, and even Snap chittered and bounced worriedly, adding in snapping sounds of threat. They didn't like that dark magic on their master. But they were afraid to attack without his approval. Mirzan could feel that magic working, though it felt... different somehow. He couldn't put a finger on how, though, and eyed his animals with confusion. They were worried and even felt threatened by what Milo was doing. That was odd.

It was only a few more minutes before Milo pulled back, a bit breathless. "There now!" he announced gleefully. "Done. I would avoid using that shoulder too heavily for a day or two, but otherwise it'll be fine." As he looked around, his smile fell. "Yes, yes, I do see.... well, sometimes this is... others aren't always prepared for my magic... It might set one with some unease, but... I assure you, he's fine." The man backed away, suddenly uncertain, and picked up his staff

"Well, perhaps I should simply be on my way, then," Milo continued, suddenly feeling rather unwelcome. He'd had enough trouble for one day, and at this point he simply wanted to be off without further incident. The problem was that cursed broken wheel.

"Please wait," Rowanna sighed, moving nearer Milo. "Your ankle?"

For all Nip and Snap still eyed Milo warily, Mirzan stood and tested his shoulder a moment carefully, then grinned. "Pretty damn good, though! Thanks!" He smiled, but rested a hand on Nip because getting up fast made him dizzy due to the blood loss. "No, don't worry, we'll still help get you to Nopalo's. What makes your Healing so... odd, though?" He carefully moved to help get Milo's boxes onto his mount, though Nip glared the whole time. "Nip's always irritable, so don't worry about it. You could feed him treats and he still will act like you're one step up from slime."

"Let me help," Rowanna offered, giving Mirzan a disapproving glance. "You've lost blood. Please. I can do this much."

His ankle... right. Milo had neglected to think on that. "Oh, that," he said, smiling at Rowanna, though this time a bit more warily. "I'll take care of it a bit later, really." Using too much healing now might coax a certain someone to show themselves, and he didn't want to deal with that at the moment, not in front of new people. "You find my healing odd?" he asked, putting on his best absent-minded airs, allowing his eyes to glaze over a minute. "Well, I suppose many see me as an odd fellow, so I suppose that just follows, really," he answered, picking up another bag from his cart and dropping it on the ground. It wasn't really an answer, he knew, but he never had a good way of explaining who, or rather, what he was without having people such as these either running in the opposite direction or trying to kill him. From these two, he feared the latter.
"I'm fine, really, as I was saying earlier, I'm still able-bodied," he promised Rowanna. "Besides, in your condition, it isn't advisable for you to overexert yourself."

Rowanna nodded, stepping back, supposing that her backwards way of tending to injuries might not be of any value to a true healer. She nodded. "Very well." She glanced toward Mirzan. "If you've no need of me, then, I should finish what I was about." She blew out a slow breath, her eyes upon the ground. "I shall see you upon my return to Nopalo's, then."

"We can /all/ help load Nip," Mirzan chuckled, gathering some straps to secure it in a manner that might balance it on the animal's back. "And you can Heal yourself better at the Inn. Its the east we can do for you Healing me. We don't have a lot of money after all. I'm a mercenary, and Rowanna's an herbalist, and neither pay a lot, plus we just got here ourselves."

At Mirzan's reply, Rowanna held out her arm to Nip, prepared to be verified so that she could help load Milo's belongings.

Mirzan reached out with his good hand to pat Rowanna's shoulder affectionately. "You can do the light stuff, love." Nip nipped her obediently, not too hard, seeming to prefer her to Milo, who he watched grumpily as if not pleased he might carry the Healer.

Rowanna began loading the lighter items then, wanting to see Mirzan and the healer on their way back to the inn safely.

Milo paused and watched the beast's reaction to Rowanna. "He bites her, too?" he asked. "Does infection never set in?" He peered forward, supplies forgotten for the moment. "Fascinating. At least no large chunks of flesh are taken..." He leaned heavily on his staff a moment before setting to work again. "Well, the reason you're injured to begin with is that you were helping me, so really it seems only fair," he then answered Mirzan absently. He hobbled forward with a few lighter bags to hand off to Rowanna, before pondering further, "Herbalist, quite right. That salve you had for numbing seemed rather effective. I should like to pick your brain about your ratios if ever you'd let me. Like I said, I always appreciate those who'll share so that I may learn new things." Clearly, Milo was hungry for knowledge, and not one too proud to admit that others may have things of value to offer him in expanding his own abilities.

"Of course. I should be happy to answer any questions you might have." Rowanna answered softly, a note of surprise evident in her voice.

"Nip bites everyone, even me if I leave his sight," Mirzan confirmed. "It's how he identifies you. To get on, you need to be bit, too. It's enough to break skin a bit, nothing else. And you two can pick each other's brains when we get here, but we'd best be going soon before those bandits think to bring buddies back." He grunted as he moved to take another box and strap it to Nip's side. "Trading recipes sounds like a good idea while you both put your feet up."

"I wasn't... I hadn't intended to..." Rowanna tried to think of a way to tell Mirzan she wasn't ready to go back to the inn, as she hadn't finished restocking yet, without causing him to worry.

Taking up the last bag left, Milo nodded. "He does make us sound like tittering housewives, now, doesn't he?" he grinned at Rowanna. "All these herbs... you really would think I would stop stock-piling them like this, but I see a patch of wild oregano, and I can't help myself." He smiled apologetically at the two, glasses askew before sticking his hand straight up in the air, nearly right into Nip's nostrils. Clearly he wasn't used to this ritual.

"I prefer to collect them myself, as well, and am hard pressed to overlook them when the opportunity presents itself," Rowanna admitted. "I've several of my own stores in need of restocking at the moment."

The mercenary chuckled and winked at Rowanna. Oh, he'd guessed she wanted to pick more herbs. But he wasn't sure that was wise when she wasn't eating much yet. "You can pick more later. They're not going to vanish overnight. Mabe you can show Milo some tomorrow and you can both go harvesting. I'd rather you have a buddy for that anyway," he admitted. "We don't know this terrain yet, after all." He had to laugh when Nip jerked his head bak to avoid having his nose picked. Then the warbeast clamped down on Milo's hand and glared firmly. Only his master's approval kept him from trying to remove fingers. He didn't approve, but Mirzan glared at his beast, insisting.

Finally Nip let go, grumbling.

Rowanna climbed up, reaching a hand down to the healer to help him aboard.

Milo yelped in surprise, though he somehow managed the feat of remaining still as he was, "tested." He focused instead on answering Rowanna. "Well, I have extras of several herbs, you see. If you need anything I have, perhaps I can provide you with extras, if that should ease your fiancé’s mind," he offered, wincing. "How long exactly...." he began to question before his hand was finally released. He absently rubbed his shoulder a few moments before offering up his opposite hand to Rowanna. Under his breath, he grumbled about avoiding doing that again if he could as he climbed aboard. "Do tell me," he continued the moment he was on Nip's back, "What exactly do you use for..." he stopped himself short, realizing he was likely being rude. "Erm, I mean, have you all been in this area a long time? You seem rather familiar with it...." Was that less rude than going on about herbs?

She closed her eyes a moment, as she had off and on throughout the morning, breathing deeply to ward off the slight vertigo. "We've only just arrived, though Master Nopalo has told us what we might find, and where."

Mirzan swung up once the last gear was tied in place, his crossbow was retrieved from earlier, the mule was tied to the rear of the warbeast, and the others were up. "Not very long," he admitted. "We came with a group. Maybe we'll buy some land nearby. We'll see," he added. "Nopalo's an old friend."

"Ah, verily!" MIlo exclaimed. "There is comfort for one to find one is not the only one who is the new one..." He blinked and wrinkled his nose as if trying to puzzle out what he himself had just said. "Yes, well... I am a traveling healer, as you may have guessed from my rather heavily-laden cart. I may not stay so long, but I'd like a chance to do some good here before I go, if possible. I may require your assistance in pointing me in the right direction to accomplish that."

Rowanna swallowed hard, blinking away the dizziness that bothered off and on. "Of course." She answered, reaching into her cloak for a bit of ginger. She withdrew her hand empty, frowning slightly at the realization of yet another item she would need to find.

Milo peered at Rowanna as she brought out ginger. "Are you not feeling well?" he asked her. "Morning sickness, of course, how silly of me," he said, though his stare remained fixed on her rather steadily, his lips drawn into a line.


Snap scurried closer to Rowanna, not liking Milo and not trusting him, intent on guarding her master's mate.

"I am well enough," she answered quietly as she withdrew a small piece at last.

Mirzan glanced back as Nip began to get up slowly. "Hang on, here we go. Let's go home, hmm? And love, maybe a snack will help... I'll even join you."

"Please... you are actually injured," Rowanna chided Milo softly. "It seems silly to fuss over such a small thing in light of true injury, don't you think?" She turned her gaze to Mirzan and sighed. "How you do fuss," she blushed.

The mercenary stuck his tongue out at her playfully. "Because I /know/ you and you don't fuss enough over yourself so someone else has to." He smiled gently. "Besides, there's two to fuss over now as well."

Milo laughed with good-nature. "My ankle? That's no injury. I do worse to myself all the time by simply running into tables and such," he admitted, blushing slightly. "Though you're right, he does seem somewhat concerned for you. If it isn't prying, may I ask if there's a particular reason he's so concerned? Has this nausea been interfering with your eating and such?"

"A bit," Rowanna answered, "though I am given to understand this is somewhat to be expected, is it not?"

The healer sat back, crossing his arm and frowning. "Well, yes..." he said with an absent scratch to his ear. "Though in some instances it's worse than others... And given your rather slight build," he said, "I would be concerned about you missing too many meals, especially as your fiance pointed out, due to the fact that there are two of you now." The man glanced over at Mirzan, as if for confirmation that he wasn't overstepping his bounds.

Rowanna nodded her understanding but stopped short of actual reply this time, having no desire to prevaricate, but less desire to worry Mirzan or anyone else further.

"A while," Mirzan confirmed. "And yes, I worry about it. There's little enough left to hug without being stuck by sharp bones. I want more padding," he pointed out at her, winking at Rowanna. "You need more weight when carrying, not less."

"I hold my own in a brisk wind even now, I am certain," Rowanna teased back, hoping to ease his worries.

"So does Snap, but you don't see me hugging her, do you?" Mirzan laughed.

Milo sat back, still lost in thought, apparently undaunted by their friendly banter.

Rowanna smiled in spite of herself. "No doubt she feels slighted for the lacking."

"I wonder..." he finally said, craning himself backwards in an attempt to reach one of his many bags. Awkwardly, he managed to knock himself in the head before finally succeeding at the task of pulling one large red bag into his lap. Then began the complicated task of searching through the bag for the correct container.

"Try this," he finally said, out of breath at the entire episode. "Just a pinch in your tea every morning... I think maybe... that should help. It's been magicked, you understand, but it's safe enough for you both."

Rowanna accepted it, though, given she was less than human, she felt it necessary to ask, "Might I inquire what it is?"

Nip plodded on steadily. Mirzan glanced back when Milo produced something, curious enough to see what it was. "It's worth trying, love. I don't want to lose either of you in this," he murmured. "Is it safe for non-humans, too?" He hoped so, because he wasn't about to reveal her other side to a stranger.

Rowanna glanced up at Mirzan, grateful that he'd asked the question.

"Oh, just standard fare," Milo answered, peering over the "edge," of his seat atop nip, groaning when a low-lying branch smacked him in the head this time. He fixed his glasses before continuing, "Lemon rind mixed with some mint-leaves... but as I said, I infused the whole deal with a bit of magic to make it more effective. Adds good flavor to a tea, too, as odd as the combination might sound." With a grimace, he removed his spectacles and began cleaning them with his cloak. The question about non-humans didn't particularly seem to faze him, though that may have been due to his own rather not-wholly human nature. If others didn't pry, he was happy not to do so himself. "Unless you know of a non-human species with an in-grown allergy to lemon and mint, then it should be safe enough."

"No, I've used mint and lemon both a number of times, though not with magic, as I possess no measurable talent of that nature."

The mercenary laughed. "No, and I doubt I ever will! And stay leaning /in/ unless you want to get beaten up by the trees. Nip is on the tall side."

Rowanna nodded, then pulled an arnica balm from within her cloak and offered it to Milo. "For the pain and bruising."

Milo smiled and took Rowanna's offering eagerly. He opened it and peered inside, smelling it at the same time. "Well, that certainly smells awful. That usually means it works. I wouldn't have thought of using that." Without another word, he peeled is boot back and began applying large quantities of the offered balm onto his ankle, sighing in relief. "I had no idea the trees in this part of the world were so aggressive," he then answered Mirzan. "it's good to be warned of these things." Absently, and with a heavily balmed hand, he patted Nip as if it were his own mule.

Nip turned his horned head to fix Milo with a glare that seemed to say he'd prefer the guy to be laying in a ditch somewhere. The mercenary chuckled. "Well, that stuff is safe enough for your head, too, right love?"

Rowanna nodded. "Of course. I had thought you might choose to put it there first, as heads bruise faster than limbs."

Rowanna closed her eyes again, wondering if perhaps simply walking would not have been better after all as the world seemed to tip sideways.

A confused look passed over his features a moment before the healer burst out laughing, a merry sound indeed. "Oh, my head is much hardier than my ankle," he told them, winking at Rowanna. "I hit that most often of all. And admittedly a few things seem dislodged up there, but mostly it's still intact. It's not as if I'm in any real danger of dying anytime soon, I assure you, not even from a head-wound." At least not so long as she had any use for him.

Mirzan laughed. "Yeah, but living damaged is maybe worse than dying, so fix your head anyway, okay? If you have to smell of that stuff, you may as well apply it liberally to all necessary points and not skip any."

"Precisely," Rowanna breathed, reaching for the straps to secure herself aboard, finding the world refusing to right itself despite her insistence, but preferring not to mention it.

Milo laughed and began slathering on the balm before he noticed that Rowanna had turned a particular shade of paler. "Erm, sir, I think mayhaps..." Milo frowned. He didn't particularly like risking what this risked, but there seemed to be a particular need for it. "You may need to steady your friend," he warned Mirzan, before he placed a hand on Rowanna's forehead. Again, the strange words began, and again, the air began to have that strange sense of weight to it as he did what he could to help his new acquaintance.

Mirzan glanced back and frowned, then reached back to help Rowanna strap herself in place. "Love, you need to stop thinking you can do things alone if you keep pulling stunts like this. If you think I will let you go back out herb-hunting when you get dizzy like this on your own, you must think me a fool or utter idiot. I'm actually glad Milo's arrived. Now I have someone to check on you so you don't risk yourself unnecessarily."

"I was well enough on foot," Rowanna protested weakly. "Only a little dizzy... forgive me." She swallowed again. "I had thought it improved when I set out." She nodded to Milo. "It eases. Thank you."

Milo continued on a few more moments, until it seemed Rowanna had regained her previous shade of pale, rather than the shade of paler she had taken on, before removing his hand. "Well, it looks like I may have found somewhere I can be useful already! I like this place already," Milo smiled, his voice more gentle now. "Though your fiancé is right, lady. If not for yourself, think of your little one. You must start caring more for yourself..." He closed his eyes and faced the sun a few moments. One might have thought him lost in thought, though the truth was he was ensuring he managed to control the stirrings he felt underneath before continuing. "I do think you shall be my personal project, if you do not mind sir... I'll be checking in on your lady here on a regular basis, and I'll not hear protests from her."

"A little dizzy far from help, gravid, and in unfamiliar terrain where you could fall and be hurt by it isn't wise," Mirzan growled. "You know better. And thank you, Milo, for helping her--I don't mind in the least. Love, at least take someone with you when you go on your outings, okay? Care for yourself at least as much as I do, please, because if you do not, I might lose you both by some accident."

"I honestly thought I had it better controlled today. Shayori and I spoke of her joining me, but she decided not to at the last. You are right, I should have remained then. I shall not go out alone again." Rowanna knew he was right. Were it one she was tending she would be at wits end by now with them.

Milo sat back again, then quickly leaned forward to avoid yet another branch, then back once more, looking around in an attempt to make himself small in this obviously recurring argument. "Well, if it helps," he ventured quietly, "I will gladly join you on outings as well... you seem to already have a good grasp on the good picking areas, after all."

Her hand went to her abdomen unconsciously. The thought of being with child seemed so foreign. She wasn't unhappy over it, by any means, but she was slightly fearful, though she'd be hard pressed to admit it aloud. "I should be glad of the company, Milo. Thank you."

"There, then you have another partner for it," the mercenary pointed out. "I don't mind you going with some help, but I do worry anyway," he admitted. "This'll set my mind more at ease, though. In any case, we're about there now. See? It's more clear ahead."

"Ah, the infamous Nopalo's!" Milo called, seeming relieved. "I admit I am looking forward to a good meal and a real bed," he confided to Rowanna. He also presumed she would be glad for a change of subject. "Are there many other patrons there now?"

Rowanna nodded, answering softly. "A fair few, though some won't emerge until nightfall."

"Yes, a few," Mirzan agreed. "Pleasant enough folk, if a bit strange sometimes, but we all have our quirks." That was all the warning he intended to give that they might be non-human.

Milo's eyebrows raised. "Some of your friends have a penchant for vampiricism, then," he laughed. "Well, to each his own," he said, MIrzan's words not lost on him, though again, he was hardly one to pry when his own situation was so... precarious. "Well, I do thank you both for the assistance in getting here with my hide intact." And unchanged. "Um..." he glanced down again as they arrived at the inn. "I don't need to get bitten again to get down, do I?"

Mirzan laughed as he directed Nip to kneel again. "No, but unload to the ground before you carry anything inside, or he'll stop trusting you are who you claim to be when you return and you won't be allowed near it." He slid down to help unstrap Rowanna, then the gear.

"Fascinating," Milo said not for the first time that day. Awkwardly, he slid down, wincing as he landed heavily on his bad ankle. Undaunted, however, he began the task of unloading, patting Nip reassuringly on occasion to ensure the beast wasn't about to throttle him with his tail. "Does he, um... like carrots as a treat?" Milo asked, pulling out one such item he typically kept for his mule.

Nip eyed Milo like he was just waiting for a reason to take an arm off. "Yes but I suggest you don't," Mirzan warned. "He's not much of one for strangers, you understand." Truth was, Nip didn't like Milo's taste and the mercenary didn't want to risk him disobeying and taking a chunk out of the Healer.

"Right, well, to Penelope, then," Milo responded, limping to his mule and offering her the treat instead. The mule didn't appear to care much for the huge beast it had followed back to the inn, but it behaved docilely enough despite Nip's presence. Once she had accepted the treat, Milo tethered her to a nearby tree, then finished unloading his items.

The healer stopped as he began carrying his belongings into the building a few moments, looking up at the inn before him. This would be his home, at least for a few days, it seemed.
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Re: A new day, a new arrival

Post  Soraya on Sun Jun 09, 2013 3:40 pm

Soraya's stomach grumbled loudly as she made her way down the stairs. Her recent late nights meant that she was sleeping in in the morning, later and later, though her stomach wasn't on the same page as she was and continued to demand being fed at normal, human times.

She stepped into the common room, trying not to yawn too obviously, nor rub her eyes for all to see. The smells were wonderful, and she was certainly ready to eat.

As she stepped toward a table, however, a commotion of sorts outside drew her attention. "What is going on?" she asked aloud, peering toward the door. Was that Nip outside?
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Re: A new day, a new arrival

Post  Laerwen on Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:23 am

"It looks like the happy couple found a friend," the elf in the corner answered. "No doubt the master of the house will approve if he has coin enough."
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Re: A new day, a new arrival

Post  Soraya on Sat Aug 03, 2013 2:50 pm

Soraya was rather surprised by the answer she received. Whoever this woman was, she apparently knew more about their group than she did.

"Have we met?" she asked. Though she didn't want to sound rude, she also didn't appreciate the idea of, perhaps, having been watched.

Or perhaps it was more than that, though she tried to control the swell of fear and excitement she felt at the notion that this stranger who seemed so comfortable around them may, in fact, be someone familiar, even if not to her... even if, perhaps, she had been lost to a faded memory.

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Re: A new day, a new arrival

Post  Laerwen on Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:06 am

The elven woman shrugged. "After a fashion," she answered. "I arrived last night and attended to my surroundings rather late into the morning." Shrugging, she adjusted her cloak and turned from the window. "Does that bother you?" she asked, a slight smirk upon her lips, knowing, of course, that it clearly did.
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Re: A new day, a new arrival

Post  Soraya on Sun Jan 19, 2014 11:23 pm

((OOC: in the interest of consolidation, I'll move this over to the, "Small Fire," thread.))
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Re: A new day, a new arrival

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