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Nizkateth
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Episode 30 - Talented and with a Guardian

28 Feb 2006, 09:07

More weeks passed as the pair traveled across rolling fields of tall grass. One day, as the summer heat was nearing its peak, Jalmar spotted a rider on horseback in the distance. The rider also saw the travelers, and galloped in their direction. From a straight posture, Jalmar leaned forward just slightly, tensed the muscles in his arms and balled his fists. As the rider drew close enough to see clearly, Anya placed one hand gently on Jalmar’s shoulder and said, “No, he’s not a threat.” With that, Jalmar relaxed and returned to his perfectly straight posture with his arms folded in front of him. The rider was a young man, no older then twenty, wearing leather riding pants and vest over a loose white linen shirt. His boots had no spurs, he rode by encouraging and guiding his horse instead of driving it onward. On his belt was a short blade sheathed at his left hip. Jalmar remained motionless as the rider drew near.

“Hail,” the young man called out in the language of the river provinces once he was close enough, “are you travelers in need of a place to stay?” Anya nodded, and Jalmar had no idea what the man was saying. He did not speak or understand the trade language of the river lands, but he trusted Anya enough to let her do the talking.

“Thank the gods,” Anya said joyously, “we’ve been out in the wilderness for months. We’d be thankful for any help.”

The man nodded. “I live in a small ranch community a little ways west of here, I’d be happy to lead you there.” He turned his horse, then looked back. “It is strange to see two lone people hiking into Marukani territory. Were you part of a caravan?”

Anya waved a hand and shook her head, “I’ll explain when we get there, but I really need to sit on something that isn’t earth and eat some real food.” The young man nodded once and then began to walk his horse off toward the west. Anya followed after him, then waved for Jalmar to follow. He began walking right behind Anya, and the three of them made their way across the plains to a group of twelve buildings surrounded by herds of horses both young and old. The man lead them to a large two-story building in the center of the hamlet, then hopped off his horse. The scent of cooking meat and vegetables wafted out from the door. Anya immediately ducked inside and saw a fine tavern full of patrons eating away hungrily. In a flash she was at the bar, and asking the barkeep for a thick steak with all types of vegetables and as much water as he could bring. The bartender smiled and went out back to get Anya her order. Jalmar paced in a moment later and silently leaned against the tavern wall.

In a matter of minutes, the barkeep had brought Anya her food and she had wolfed it down. She leaned back in her seat and sighed contentedly. All the Marukan patrons switched between staring at Anya and staring at Jalmar. Anya did no care given how content she felt, and Jalmar just didn’t care. Once her stomach settled, Anya spoke to the barkeep. “Hey, I noticed how you cooked your steak. Mind if I show you a better way?” The bartender seemed intrigued by her offer, and lead Anya back into the kitchen. Jalmar stepped away from the wall and positioned himself to have a clear view of the kitchen, and Anya, then leaned back against the outer wall.

Anya searched through various cabinets by the fire-stove, and pulled out ceramic jars that looked as though they hadn’t been used in years. A big grin came to her face when she opened them and found several different spices, from mild to hot. She then took one of the nicely cut pieces of meat they had in the kitchen and began to rub handfuls of spices right into the steak. The bartender watched curiously and took note of what she was doing. Then, Anya took the spiced steak and tossed it onto the grill lightly. The barkeep mentioned something about trimming off the fat and gristle, but Anya shook her head and said that came later. Anya quickly flipped the steak over as it began to sizzle, and lightly grilled both sides. Once the steak was just perfectly seared, she slid it onto a platter and began to cut away larger pieces of fat from around the edge. She sliced the completed steak into several smaller pieces and put each piece, still well over half a pound each, onto separate plates. Anya then walked back out into the tavern’s main room and offered a piece to all the patrons, including the barkeep. Jalmar remained motionless and watched Anya the whole time. All the patrons devoured their steaks happily, and the barkeep told Anya it was the best he had ever had.

Anya smiled warmly, “It was my pleasure!”
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Bladestorm
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28 Feb 2006, 09:32

Awww...she's cute, a good cook, and tough. What's not to like about Anya?

Big, gruff, angry Jalmar, cuddlytough Anyakitten. I really love your work, Niz. ^_^
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28 Feb 2006, 09:32

Anya!
 
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Nizkateth
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28 Feb 2006, 09:38

Bladestorm wrote:
Awww...she's cute, a good cook, and tough. What's not to like about Anya?
Big, gruff, angry Jalmar, cuddlytough Anyakitten. I really love your work, Niz. ^_^

Yup, she grew up on a farm in the north and learned to cook quite well there. She can also at least speak Low-Realm, Skytongue, and Riverspeak. So she's actually quite the talented one. ^_^
And Jalmar is keeping an eye on her, in case things somehow go bad. A pretty good guardian given this guy could scare off ferocious guard dogs with a glance.
:D
Elric wrote:
Anya!

Yes, that was definately Anya.
^_^
"There was a young lady named bright,
Who could travel much faster than light,
She went out one day,
In a relative way,
And came back the previous night."

Love is never having to say you're sorry. Power is being able to kill anyone who asks for an apology.
Jaito: "Necromancy is like Linux, but even less sociable"
<Logos> The sugar is Asian people.
"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, watch it! I'm huge."
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28 Feb 2006, 10:27

Now, the question is: Will Anya remain here as a cook and marry the fine young nameless extra?

Or will she continue her training with Jalmar?

Also: They're surrounded by herds of horses? Damn. If those things are even mildly trained to spot intruders that's a safe town.
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Nizkateth
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28 Feb 2006, 10:38

Legendary Mumbler wrote:
Now, the question is: Will Anya remain here as a cook and marry the fine young nameless extra?
Or will she continue her training with Jalmar?
Also: They're surrounded by herds of horses? Damn. If those things are even mildly trained to spot intruders that's a safe town.

She enjoys cooking (and does it well), but she seems to want to get home. Staying in the Marukan alliance won't do that for her, and Jalmar has taught her better than to take the easy way out.

And yeah, horses on all side of the town. Good for grazing and for warning. :D
"There was a young lady named bright,
Who could travel much faster than light,
She went out one day,
In a relative way,
And came back the previous night."

Love is never having to say you're sorry. Power is being able to kill anyone who asks for an apology.
Jaito: "Necromancy is like Linux, but even less sociable"
<Logos> The sugar is Asian people.
"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, watch it! I'm huge."
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28 Feb 2006, 10:46

Nizkateth wrote:
Legendary Mumbler wrote:
Now, the question is: Will Anya remain here as a cook and marry the fine young nameless extra?
Or will she continue her training with Jalmar?
Also: They're surrounded by herds of horses? Damn. If those things are even mildly trained to spot intruders that's a safe town.

She enjoys cooking (and does it well), but she seems to want to get home. Staying in the Marukan alliance won't do that for her, and Jalmar has taught her better than to take the easy way out.

And yeah, horses on all side of the town. Good for grazing and for warning. :D


I bet "reaching home" will prove somehow impossible. Either it's destroyed, and she hunts down the one responsible, or she decides at the last moment that she wants to stay with Jalmar.
"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I've seen C-beams glitter in the darkness near the Tannhauser gate. All these moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die."
 
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28 Feb 2006, 10:48

Nizkateth wrote:
And yeah, horses on all side of the town. Good for grazing and for warning. :D


Also good for: Rearing up and crushing the skulls of intruders.
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Nizkateth
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28 Feb 2006, 10:48

Legendary Mumbler wrote:
Also good for: Rearing up and crushing the skulls of intruders.

Especially since they're Marukani horses, all well bred.
^_^
"There was a young lady named bright,
Who could travel much faster than light,
She went out one day,
In a relative way,
And came back the previous night."

Love is never having to say you're sorry. Power is being able to kill anyone who asks for an apology.
Jaito: "Necromancy is like Linux, but even less sociable"
<Logos> The sugar is Asian people.
"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, watch it! I'm huge."
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28 Feb 2006, 10:52

Squeeee! Anya is so cool ^.^
[22:35] blender_bunny@mac.com: Val's soul made into a Strapon would be the most dangerous weapon on earth

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Nizkateth
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28 Feb 2006, 10:53

Valheru wrote:
Squeeee! Anya is so cool ^.^

She is a woman of many talents.
:D
"There was a young lady named bright,
Who could travel much faster than light,
She went out one day,
In a relative way,
And came back the previous night."

Love is never having to say you're sorry. Power is being able to kill anyone who asks for an apology.
Jaito: "Necromancy is like Linux, but even less sociable"
<Logos> The sugar is Asian people.
"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, watch it! I'm huge."
Hamster Style / Kitten Style / Hit 'Em With a Rock Style / Newest Icon Full Pic
 
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28 Feb 2006, 11:05

Nizkateth wrote:
Valheru wrote:
Squeeee! Anya is so cool ^.^

She is a woman of many talents.
:D


Considering the last two people to post in this thread happen to be lesbians, is it really wrong of me to put innuendo into that? :P
"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I've seen C-beams glitter in the darkness near the Tannhauser gate. All these moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die."
 
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28 Feb 2006, 11:10

Bladestorm wrote:
Nizkateth wrote:
Valheru wrote:
Squeeee! Anya is so cool ^.^

She is a woman of many talents.
:D


Considering the last two people to post in this thread happen to be lesbians, is it really wrong of me to put innuendo into that? :P


Who knows. try and find out.

If you get socked in the jaw, then it was a bad idea.

If you suddenly hear these odd mewing noises..you know it was a good idea.
[22:35] blender_bunny@mac.com: Val's soul made into a Strapon would be the most dangerous weapon on earth

K0npeito: Why does every conversation we have in here have to end with Val getting a penis?
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28 Feb 2006, 11:15

Valheru wrote:
Bladestorm wrote:
Nizkateth wrote:
Valheru wrote:
Squeeee! Anya is so cool ^.^

She is a woman of many talents.
:D


Considering the last two people to post in this thread happen to be lesbians, is it really wrong of me to put innuendo into that? :P


Who knows. try and find out.

If you get socked in the jaw, then it was a bad idea.

If you suddenly hear these odd mewing noises..you know it was a good idea.


Not all of Anya's talents relate to cooking or fighting, then...and with Jalmar uninterested, she must get sooo lonely. :wink:
"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I've seen C-beams glitter in the darkness near the Tannhauser gate. All these moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die."
 
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28 Feb 2006, 11:37

Nices... ^_^

Anya cookie...
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28 Feb 2006, 20:28

I have to say, one thing that often gets overlooked in heroic stories is the trappings of a normal life. We all know Exalts were mortals, great theme, etc. It's really nice to see it applied, though.

In other words: No Charms were used in the making of this scene.

And that's kinda nifty now and then. Also interesting to not only have a mortal's point of view in an Exalted story, but for a scene to basically revolve around them too.

Nice job.
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28 Feb 2006, 20:38

As it happens, steaks made like that are insanely delicious.

Mmm, steak...
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Nizkateth
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01 Mar 2006, 08:07

fallstavia wrote:
And that's kinda nifty now and then. Also interesting to not only have a mortal's point of view in an Exalted story, but for a scene to basically revolve around them too.
Nice job.

Thanks!
^_^
I rather enjoy how awesome Anya is as a mortal traveling with a solar, and keeping up.

Zweihander wrote:
As it happens, steaks made like that are insanely delicious.

I was hoping I remembered the method properly.
Seems I hit the mark!
:D
"There was a young lady named bright,
Who could travel much faster than light,
She went out one day,
In a relative way,
And came back the previous night."

Love is never having to say you're sorry. Power is being able to kill anyone who asks for an apology.
Jaito: "Necromancy is like Linux, but even less sociable"
<Logos> The sugar is Asian people.
"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, watch it! I'm huge."
Hamster Style / Kitten Style / Hit 'Em With a Rock Style / Newest Icon Full Pic
 
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01 Mar 2006, 13:22

I'm probably wrong as well. The general method is right, but for all I know, it could taste like ass if you follow the instructions here exactly.
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