Thistle Staff Stories
need to go look up the various Fae species in the library if they have
anything on them. I'm not certain," eyes following hers as she saw
to the bump. The salve felt a lot better than the ice. It was probably
way pass ice doing any good. "That's just it, they play mischief
and havoc on the ones they decide they like." Like that made sense
but then there was this point, "like a lad that likes a girl in
school and dips her pigtails in ink, sticks a harmless snake in her
lunch pail and puts a tack on her seat, all to get her attention."
Eyes were holding to hers as it was killing him now so he had to ask,
"are you Brian's lass now?"
slipped her hand loosely around his arm to hold as she walked slightly
behind Matthew, blinking in the darkness while he knocked his knife
against the wall. She, too stopped to listen when he did, but all she
could hear was the thumping of tons of water against the outside of
the cave. Even just a bit further it had gone from dim to almost pitch
black, and she nodded willingly when he spoke. "Aye, we can't see
anything anyway," which made exploring a bit pointless.
Turning around put her in the lead and her hand slid down his arm to
take his fingers lightly as they made their way back out. It was
beginning to occur to her that she had no idea what time it was, nor how
many hours had passed. Much as she would like to forget time altogether
and spend the rest of the day with him... duty did call for both of them
and they would be missed if home too late.
Sword, A Wedding, A Courting
He was, quite frankly, exhausted but in a good way. He found training to be excellent and it challenged him in ways he hadn't been for a long time, not even taking into account his entrapment. He had gone to the Thistle for a good meal, and hopefully to see Maggie. Full and half dozing, he watched as his sister waltzed into the room, a brow lifting. Smiling, he stood so he could accept and return the hug and kiss. "You're in a good mood. Even more than usual."
"It's a lovely evening," she said by way of explanation, pulling back from the hug with a dazzling smile. "You look happy, too. Tired but happy." Which she was very pleased to see. "Your training is going well? Oh!" She interrupted herself as she remembered something and a more sly smile curved her lips. "I have something for you. Stay right there." And off she went down the hallway that led to her chambers, her humming wafting behind her. She was gone for only a few moments before she peeked her head out from that hallway, keeping the rest of her body hidden in shadow. "Close your eyes."
Lovely evening? He chuckled as he sat again, then nodded. "It is." Anything else he would have said was paused as she headed off. "Is it safe to close them?" Teasing a moment, before he closed his eyes and waited.
"Would I ever do anything to hurt you?" She teased back, but grinned some, recalling certain childhood incidents when she may or may not have pinched him or tugged his hair. The gestures were always mutual of course. Once she was sure his eyes were closed, she moved over to where he sat, and lay something long, narrow and slightly heavy across his lap. Gently guiding his hands to close around it so it would not fall, she perched on the stool beside him. "Alright... you can look now." It was the sword she had promised, protected by a fine leather scabbard that could be attached to a belt. If he drew the blade he would see that it was no ordinary sword, but custom made. The shape of the wyvern was imprinted on the steel, that fiercesome Welsh creature that figured so often in the stories of their youth and which always had secretly reminded her of Richard. Fearless and unfailingly loyal. She was watching his face, hoping it was the right sort of blade and one he liked.
had been missing for a while. He'd been back to the Hollow Hills
for as long as he could without being spotted by their enemies. What a
feather in their cap if they could take down yet another chieftain of
the MacKay clan. Eimear was not forgotten and until they found her or
her body, they would not give up on her. Once back he first went to the
mountains on a visionary quest as he might see better from afar.
The visions were still cloudy and he knew he'd have to bring in Mikhail
as well Trevet to finally put him under (a dangerous ceremony) to find
out what was stored in recesses of his mind and some say.. soul, for his
stay within the Hollow Hills. Living with the great Druids of old. The
information they would have implanted would not be accessed by the
messenger. With a slightly heavy heart, he came down from the mountains
and the only uplifting was he had plans to execute and go from there.
There was another matter too, not less in his heart but some matters
came before his heart could be tended to. The one that possessed it, he
would find if she understood what was required of him or had her
feelings faded in such an amount of time to pass? There was a fur
cloak thrown over one shoulder as the rest of his attire consisted of a
woolen shirt beneath a leather tunic and pants of wool, all in dark
colors except the lighter browns of the fur. Boots laced up to just
below his knees that were lined and strapped well. He came from an even
colder climate than here in the Commons on his mountain sabatical. Topaz
hue eyes swiftly took in the confines. There had been a few changes in
the tavern since he was last here. He could hope some things had
not changed. He had a presence about him that took up the breadth
of the doorway that had even more to do than his physical size. A nod
was given the two present, not knowing either but certainly he was
cordial. "Guid eve tae yea." The moment in the door brief as
he headed for the bar and to greet Alex. At least in Alex still being
here gave grounding that not all had changed since his leave.
He just grinned, then waited, brow furrowing slightly. How could he miss the shape but when he opened it, his smile grew. Taking it from the scabbard, he held it up to catch the light. "Maggie, I've never seen finer." He carefully wrapped her up in his arms and placed a kiss to the top of her head. "Love you, little sister." He smiled over the top of her head at the man and nodded. "Evening." And then he released her. He'd test the blade where there was more room later.
Glancing up to the door, Maggie offered the stranger an easy smile. Wait... he actually looked familiar... but her attention soon went back to Richard as he examined his gift. "Really, you like it?" Her face lit with a smile that dimpled her cheeks, and she returned the hug, holding onto it for a moment to give him a good squeeze. "Love you, too," she said against his shoulder, smiling so brightly up at him. How much she had missed him! And... there were some things she needed to speak to him about... so it was a good thing he liked the sword so much. She released the hug to touch the engraving of the dragon-type creature. "Rhett did a wonderful job.. do you remember all the stories?" It was bittersweet memories she had of their mam, and distant ones, so vague she sometimes felt they belonged to someone else.
"Of course I do." He chuckled as she asked then the smile faded just a touch. "I think so. Most of them at the least." That made the sword all the more important to him.
The bond between the Lion and the Rom had not faded, even with the time that had passed. It drew her to the Thistle even now when the wind blew chill from the mountains, swirling the remains of leaves about the commons. Adara was well protected from the cold with a fur-lined cloak, the hood covering her dark hair. She shivered at the lonely sound though and hurried on inside, pausing after she shut the door to just watch the man there a moment. Lowering her hood finally, she smiled, one for all there, though her eyes were still on Ruarc. "Evenin' all."
He tried to give the two privacy as much as one could in a tavern open to the public. Potcheen would be his fare as his heart ached for another to appear. That bond would draw her as surely the moth flew to the flame entranced by it. He pushed up from his lean against the bar and around just as she came to the door. He took in her sight like one starved but cherishing the moment before they indulged. He feasted upon her with is eyes before his arms moved wide from his sides and he waited.
She did not miss the way his smile faded, and her own took on a somewhat sad tint. "We shall just have to tell them to each other, to remember them better." She rubbed the top of his hand gently, then settled back on her stool. Pausing when the door opened again, she offered the woman a smile. "Good evening and welcome. Can I get either of you any..." and then she noticed the way the two were staring at each other, "...thing." She finished more softly, smiling to herself then turning back to her brother to give the two their moment. "So tell me all about your training, I want to hear everything."
She was both laughing and crying as she near flew across the room to his arms. All her fears, all her worries vanished in that moment. He was back and that was all that matter now. Questions would come later.
He nodded at her answer then looked up. "Think they have what they need." He whispered then slipped the sword back into its scabbard. His old one would go up on the wall of his room. "Well, I'm up before dawn, have a good breakfast and am out on the field, no matter the weather, still before the sun rises." He kept his voice low though it likely wouldn't matter. "Train in sword fighting with the knights, then off to train in other weapons and drill." He gave her a lopsided smile. "I misstep more than I like to admit."
"Aye, I've not come from the dead," as if he could read her fears she suffered in his absence. "I've come 'ome for yea, tae be mae wife. I need yea by me side." Words were roughen and heartfelt as she was swallowed up in his arms. "Iffin yea wish a traditional wedding by these lands, I will abide but if yea want a tribal wedding then I shall say me vows 'ere in witness of those within in my declaration." A much more ancient way, as ancient as the man that held her and the whole of family adhered to the ways. His brogue thick even if his speech had become somewhat modified.
"Aye," she agreed with Richard just as quietly, taking a moment to watch the two embrace with a warm smile. Ahhh it couldn't help but remind her of her own special someone, and she wondered where he was at this moment. Ooh it sounded like he was proposing here and now! Maggie watched on with bright interest, smiling just at their evident happiness before drawing her attention back to Richard. "Everyone missteps sometimes, I'm sure. Just part of the training. I hear you're doing splendidly." So she tended to bring her brother up to the knights who came through the tavern, in order to get a bit of information on how he was doing. Sue her! "It's good you're getting experience with knights as well as in the royal guards. Have you met any of the royal family yet?"
She was speechless for only a moment before she laughed and hugged him tightly. "My people jump the broom to declare our vows, Ruarc. A tribal wedding will suit me better than any elaborate ceremony. I love you, and I will be proud and happy to be your wife." Tears of joy streamed down her face as she answered.
"Aye, it is. Haven't tripped anyone at the least." Which a few of the young lads had done. He laughed and nudged her. "Spying on me?" And he had noticed that smile. He might ask about it in a moment but he fell silent as the woman accepted the proposal.
"Then so it shall be," he turned a look over his shoulder to Alex who had slipped away and gotten Hazel as the two stood there in witness. There was the man and woman too. "I am Ruarc Aonghus MacKay, chieftain of the MacKay clan. I declare 'ere and now tae take Adara Giles, as me woman and wife, tae me hearth and me bed. She bae the only one chosen, tae bear me children and walk by mae side from this day tae the end of ours. She will bae strong for mae as I will bae strong for her in all life brings, barring out all others to come between us and our union." In short, there would be no cheating accepted or it negated this commitment. "Iffin she declares tae accept then by the power as Chieftain it is sae."
"Well, that's good," she laughed some and nudged Richard right back. "Not exactly but I do like to check up on you... I can't help it, you're not around very often with all the training." A small pout there, but then attention turned back to the happy couple. She fell quiet to listen to Ruarc's vows... they were very beautiful in their simplicity. And she couldn't help the shimmer of tears that came to her eyes even as her lips formed a bright smile. Maggie had always been the romantic, moved to joy or tears by bardic tales of love and it was even more true for her these days. Her gaze moved then to Adara, certain already that she would accept.
"I am Adara Giles. I declare here and now to take Ruarc Aonghus MacKay as my man and my husband, to his hearth and bed. He is the only one chosen, and I will bear his children and walk by his side from this day until the end of our days. I will be strong for you as you are for me in all that life brings, barring out any others to come between us and our union." She couldn't imagine any other as her husband.
He still held the sword and scabbard in one hand but slipped his free arm over Maggie's shoulders. This wedding was another surprise added to the night.
Matthew finished all the chores he promised Alex. It took him until late for being so late in getting back. Not that he would change that at all for the time spent. He leaned against the frame of the archway that led back to the rooms and offices. A strip of cloth tied around his forehead that had soaked up any sweat from the labor he endured to complete some of the chores. It would seem something important was going on as he recognized both Ruarc and Adara. He'd been here that long even if he had not seen either in a very long time.
gave Richard a quick glance then turned that beaming smile to the newly
married couple, bursting into applause. She felt honored and blessed to
have been witness to such a union, even if they were strangers to her.
It formed a sort of bond between them, and now Maggie would be sure to
ask after them whenever she saw either person about town. Her position
sitting at the bar with Richard, and distraction over the pair made her
oblivious to Matthew's presence somewhere behind her as she clapped.
THE ATTIC SL
chuckled and nodded as she listened to Michael. One of the things she
loved about him, and there were many, was his love and concern for Lei.
"I was thinking the very same thing when you said she'd be here.
And we have some new books that she could help catalogue." She
noticed Matthew and Maggie coming in and smiled. "Good evening,
Matthew. Maggie. I think I have a few books that you might find useful.
Let me get them." Everyone but the two young women who helped were
gone and she nodded at them, to let them know if was all right if they
left. Then she made her way to the section where those books were. She
returned to them a few moments later. "Any particular reason?"
Asking from her own curiosity.
were getting use to it themselves. Happened quickly, a surprise and yet
not. It had been lingering there between them for a while until surfaced
to be recognized. "Aye, best way to learn your way around for the
royal family goes where they want. Smart move in having you patrol
various places. They might put you on a length of duty of those that
ride out outside the wall the few miles perimeter before it is
considered Ranger Territory. There are two Harbor Masters along
with their help to get to know. They know everyone down there as it
is their job to." There was a moment's consideration as he
indicated the books setting on the table. "Ever hear of a Bogie or