"Woman, woman!" The sound of Karaka's insistent voice and the feeling of being shaken by the shoulder, brought the Moon Elf swimming back from the skies above Brightpool to the reality that she was still in her bed in the Daifiri Flats. "Dogs and demons! You been weeping and mumbling... City is fired-up about some big fight over in Elf Town yesterday. What did you get mixed up in?"
It was only as the priestess shifted that she felt a knot in her side and pulled forth an ornate goblet, lovingly crafted from living wood, a few tiny flowers now closed up for the day. With one eyebrow raised, the old soldier shook his head, "That rich new 'friend' got you staying out late even for you, huh?"
When the woman and the others had finally gone, Karaka pulled back the cloth from the face of the deceased assailant, frowning deeply. "Your admirer is known to me, woman. Name is Vergeir, use to work for Bonati, one o' his enforcers. Got put in da big house two years back when he done messed up an killed a man what had friends like you do."
"Musta got free when dat Obanohi fool smashed the jail down," he mused.
Upon hearing the man's name, you recall that he had attempted to bully some of the teachers at Carlina Mondracus' [now destroyed] Hope-Light Mission. Although the Baroness had nothing to do with his conviction, the weight of testimony by other white teachers had been enough to guarantee disciplinary action in a civil case even if there was insufficient evidence to see him convicted in a criminal case.
However, it was the man's unwillingness to divulge the details of his employment that saw him imprisoned, although Iole Bonati seemed to have disavowed any dealings with the man.
K: Local 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (12) + 6 = 18
K: Nobility 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20
Not ten heartbeats had passed, before a large, dark shape loomed in Amhranai's doorway, the glint of steel evident in the light of the two moons.
"You alright, woman? That witch didn't put no bad mojo on you, did she?" Casting about as if looking for some tell tale sign of a curse, he asked, not waiting for an answer to his prior questions, "What did she want anyway? She's not gonna come back, now, is she? I don't like her eyes... they are not those of the girl who grew up here."
Clearly, for as well-spoken and intelligent as he was, there was still a healthy dose of Dafari superstition in the warrior's heart — at least where young women with the souls of ancient women and the bodies of panthers were concerned. On reflection, perhaps it was not so unreasonable of a superstition to hold on to...
"Heh, heh, hmm..." With a decidedly unenthusiastic laugh, the warrior left whispering in his friend's ear, "Never trust a cat to say it is not hungry. Sometimes they just want to play with a kill. Scream if you need me, woman."
With that, the warrior left the two to their conversation, warily eyeing Amhranai's door as he sharpened a knife out of nervous habit.
Karaka frowned at the sight of the witch, but didn't dare take his eyes off her. "Careful, my friend. Not long ago, this one was just a young girl, but now... Now she is a panther and her eyes deep, like an old shaman."
Knowing better than to defy a witch's demand for privacy, the warrior merely glanced at the tiny elven woman beside him before looking behind them at the stump of a large tree, long since cleared, to indicate where he would await her.
Although leaving the Princess' party before the rest of the guests had allowed Amhranai to escape any awkward encounters with Carlina, and outpace any news of her knighting, it did mean she had a lengthy walk home ahead of her. Still, there were many concerns to occupy her mind during that: Shivone, Freebooters, the part Alis would have her play in aiding the Zucks, the fact that Karaka was waiting outside her home, wringing his hands...
Upon seeing his older, paler friend, the Dafari warrior shook his head anxiously, his gritted white teeth standing in stark contrast to his dark complexion. "You make many strange friends, woman. I think maybe you would have done better to blow yourself up. This 'friend' who calls on you now... she do the voodoo!"
With that, he gestured to the dark, looming door to the modest hovel Amhranai called home. There, standing in the doorway, a long, sleek black cat too big to be a house cat yet too small to be a panther strutted, beckoning the priestess enter with a crook of its tail.