Salvation

Save Tonight

Things get dark for the lady Pathseekers, but a new light is found as the rebellion comes to a head.

Venday, 10 Newbirth, 6935 EY into Taursday, 11 Newbirth, 6935 EY: The group split into four teams to rescue slaves from slave compounds. Although the plan went as expected for Tomren, Taegon, and Arnold's teams, Haseya and Misae's team sprung a trap by speaking to a wood elven slave named Little Duck, leaving them caught and at the mercy of Darice il-Kassem, the captain of the cataphracts, and Melchoir za-Khanzar, the dervish general.

Melchoir and Darice led the captured Haseya, Misae and Narida to the Electrum Palace, where they were taken by Mage-Lord Arshad za-Rajafi into the throne room of the zultan himself, Peri ur-Nammuz. Whispering to the mage-lord his instruction, it was revealed that Little Duck would be reassigned as she was "of no use to the zultan," that Narida was considered gutter trash and would be given to the guards as a treat, and that Misae should be prepped for the zultan's harem. The zultan was unsure about "the bear" but said he would take her if she were to be shaved. Haseya stood defiant against this, and Arshad took her into another room.

Here, Arshad attempted to shave Haseya, who still resisted. Arshad brought in Little Duck and Misae. He slit the throat of Little Duck as he calmly explained how he knew ursith were protective of wood elves. He then ripped open Misae's shirt, who was restrained and bound to a stretcher, and produced a whip. Haseya relented, agreeing to be shaved, but Arshad gave Misae one lash anyway.

As Arshad chopped a lock of Haseya's hair off, the door suddenly burst open, leaving Arshad splayed into Haseya's lap. Thinking quickly, Haseya used her powerful thighs to crush the man's head until she heard a crunch and his body went limp. The door had been opened by Narida, who stood free, bloodied and out of breath with a sack containing the belongings of all the women. She unrestrained the two women, and all three of them fled the palace, running into a rescue party made up of Tomren, Taegon, Arnold, Zafar, Eskandar, Moras, and a wood elven man who called himself "Standing Bear." The men questioned the women on what had happened, but none were in the mood to talk, so they walked in silence for several hours until arriving in Falconshrine, the headquarters of the church of Tes-Betat.

That night, the women were wracked by nightmares, and Taegon had a dream of another time and place.

Oathday, 12 Newbirth, 6935 EY: The party was awoken early by Eskandar and Zafar who led them aboveground to a graveyard. It was revealed that Eskandar's brother and Zafar's lover were one in the same— Javad il-Tavana. Zafar relayed his life story to the group, explaining how he and Javad became dissidents and joined the Butterfly, and how his father killed Javad during a slave revolt, and how Eskandar served as a sleeper agent working for the Lord of Servitude.

Although Eskandar had hoped this would clear the confusion between him and Misae, it only served to sour their relationship's potential as Misae did not appreciate the deception, regardless of how 'noble' it was, and furthermore felt insulted that she could not be trusted to keep secrets after the sacrifices and risks she had made in the name of the Butterfly.

More was learned about the mysterious Standing Bear as the day progressed. He was, in fact, the same slave who Haseya had stood up for in Samsandi, who had found his courage after that incident, killed his master, and fled to Falconshrine to become part of the army. He now considered himself Haseya's "sworn man," and said he would die to defend her. Moras also visited Haseya, and cut off part of his hair to show solidarity with his friend/crush.

Kamaria called a final council, wherein she declared it time for the final push and attack on Karna. The armies were assembled and ready to roll out. She suggested everyone take the evening to say whatever they needed to to whoever they needed to, as nobody could be sure what the morning would bring.

The day was filled with conversation, dialogue, and personal drama (NOTE: I'm bound to not remember everything—a lot happened here—so forgive me.) Misae and Moras bond a bit. Arnold resolves a dispute with his old band buddies and has one jam session before the big war. Tomren reassured the women that those who hurt them would die. Taegon and Misae have a moment that borders on romantic, but Taegon still doesn't seem to get the heavy hints that Misae is dropping. Arnold makes himself stupid with the rod of wonder. Haseya and Misae reflect on how far their journey has taken them, and how they never expected to wind up here. Moras asks Tomren for advice on women and receives nothing of value. Taegon receives a vision from Onaiwah that shows him as a warrior-king astride a white stag and leading an army of his own people. Moras visits Haseya, disturbed that she won't admit to her positive qualities. This interaction causes a transformation in Moras, and it is revealed that Moras has werewolf blood in him. He admits he is not Moras Graymoon, but in fact Moras Wolftongue, a noble of Ethova. He tells Haseya that he has control over his shape, and refuses to revert, saying he will stay a werewolf until Haseya admits she is beautiful.

Tomren and Krystof have one final drink and conversation full of backhanded compliments. Misae and Narida swear vengeance upon those who harmed them. Standing Bear asks to sleep in Haseya's quarters to be near her and sleeps on the floor. He undresses partially, completely flustering Haseya. Sebba comes to Arnold to hear songs of her homeland before the battle, but Arnold is too stupid to play music, so she leaves, disappointed. Zafar visits with Haseya and thanks her for everything she has been and done, and teases her about the half-naked, muscular wood elf in her room. Taegon helps to train the gyppa for a while as he is considered a "legendary dragon slayer" amongst them. Eskandar makes one final attempt with Misae that fails. Emanaya asks to sleep with Tomren—not for sex, but to be held. Tomren asks Emanaya if she wishes she could be free from the demon she is bound to. Emanaya explains she didn't tell Tomren everything so he could swoop in and save her. She is okay with her fate and just wants to do as much good as possible before that day comes. Tomren silently commits to slaying the demon, but doesn't say as much. Taegon is visited by his grandfather in the night, who has ominous plans for the future. Finally, Arnold and Narida have a discussion about where their relationship is headed, but Arnold is still too stupid to fully elucidate on his position, simply saying that they are "new" and implying that they have a lot to figure out about each other.

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Penumbra73

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