sagesaria: (fanfiction)
[personal profile] sagesaria
Title: Karrah
Category: Fanfiction, computer game, Everquest
Rating: PG
Genre: Action/Adventure/Fantasy/Mystery
Summary: A story based upon my monk character, Karrah.
Status: Incomplete

Chapter 1 of Karrah: http://www.livejournal.com/users/sarias_stories/9688.html#cutid1
Chapter 2 of Karrah: http://www.livejournal.com/users/sarias_stories/11156.html#cutid1
Chapter 3 of Karrah: http://www.livejournal.com/users/sarias_stories/12044.html#cutid1


Chapter 4
I shrugged the pack onto my shoulders, taking one final glance back at Qeynos. Out of the fires at last, I thought. I didn’t even say goodbye to anyone as I left, except my guild. It’s not like anyone else would care…

I took a deep breath and paced across the worn path. A few gnoll pups flattened their dog-like ears and growled at me as I passed, but they knew to keep their distance. I glanced up at the sky, which had exhausted itself from the rain. Quellious knew when it would start again, however.

My attention returned to the path; I heard music in the distance. Curious, I quickened my pace. Scattered plants sprouted from the pains, and under one young tree by the road sat the source of the music that caught my interest.

Bards. Three of them; two young ladies and a man, deep in practice. The man crouched against the tree with a recorder, tooting the melody of a jig while one girl accompanied him with a lute and the other kept time on a tambourine as she danced circles around the musicians.

I slowed to take in the sight. Bards truly were a marvel of Norrath. They saw me watching, and smiled in greeting, never missing a beat of their song.

“You there!”

The trio stopped short, recognizing the voice as a guard galloping down the road on a gray mare, accompanied by a duplicate of himself.

“Get out of here, ruddy urchins!” He and his partner sped toward the bards, who promptly scattered. The ladies eluded their predators, while the soldiers leapt from their mounts and went after the boy, who stumbled over his escape. I winced as they overcame him, blades drawn, but instead delivered sharp kicks to his bones. My face reddened, hands clenched, and in half a thought, I stepped out of my sandals, running to the fight.

I grabbed the first guard’s shoulder, turning him my way so I could strike under the chin. The second received a double kick; once to knock the helmet away, then again to the side of his head.

The ringing from clanking armor settled. I tossed my bangs back, no traces of sweat on them, and turned to the bard. He winced at his sore ribs as he sat up.

“Are you ok?” I asked, extending a hand to him.

“Yeah, ‘malroyt. Thanks.” His accent surprised me. He pulled himself to his feet by my hand and shook disarrayed auburn hair away.

“Bloymey.” He whistled, “You beat ‘em up pretty good. You one o’ dem monks?”

“I am…” I replied, not sure how to take the way he asked his question. He whistled again, straightening his leather tunic.

“Wow. Bet you a valuable one in ye guild.”

I forced a smile, growing awkward and heeding my instincts to slip my sandals back on and keep walking.

“Well,” continued the bard, now striding alongside me, wind instruments hanging from his belt giving percussion to his pace, “Now that you’ve gone and saved me loyf, I’d loyk t’know ye name.”

I wasn’t sure how obviously I winced.

“…Karrah…” I said at last, fighting not to clench my teeth.

“Karrah, eh? Pretty name fo’ a pretty lady. Anyway, I’m Royda. ‘Snoyce t’meetya.”

Royda? What kind of a name is that? I tried to smile again, but shyness got the best of me, so instead I quickened my pace, hoping he would take the hint.

But while he confirmed my haste, he didn’t leave. Instead he questioned it.

“You in quite a ‘urry, ain’t ye? Where ye off to?”

“Freeport.” I answered, hiding my annoyance. He raised an eyebrow at me.

“Freeport? What’ye goin’ there fo?” he exclaimed, sidestepping to follow me as his eyes scanned me again,
“On foot even! It’ll take days jus’ t’get across the plains!” he snorted, “And then there’s the city itself…take it from me, Miss; it ain’t much better then ‘round ‘ere.”

I stopped completely and turned to face him. How dare you compare the beautiful city of Freeport to this rat hole?! I wanted to scream. But I restrained myself.

“If you don’t mind, Royda—“

“Royda.” He corrected.

“What?”

“Royda.” The bard repeated, “Loyk those guards ‘oo were roydin’ the ‘orses.”

Oh, of course. That ridiculous accent of his…

“Ryder,” I continued with the corrected name, “Why I am going to Freeport is a personal matter and none of your concern.”

“Royt, royt. Sorry.” Ryder chuckled, scratching his ear, “I loyk t’ear people’s stories ‘round ‘ere. ‘Elps wit’ me music. I guess I can get a little carried away sometoymes. I do apologize.”

Maybe he does know when to back off. I thought. Ryder was now matching my pace step for step. He glanced at me, and raised an eyebrow again.

“What ‘appened there?”

I froze, heat rising to my face. He was pointing to my scar.

“It’s nothing!” I answered, turning away. He clearly didn’t believe me, and leaned around to face me again. I wanted to look away, push him aside, so something, but something about his kept me frozen. I closed my eyes as he stroked my bangs back, gentle fingers, barely touching my skin.

“Bloymey! Ye got blooded up pretty good there, didn’t ye. Does it ‘urt?”

Embarassment and anger kept me silent.

“’Ow’d ye get it?”

I turned my eyes to the ground and said nothing.

“Ah, nevermoynd. Not me business, royt?” Ryder spun on his heel and stepped away as he spoke. I lifted my eyes to watch his back. He stopped, then looked back at me, one hand on his hip.

“Ye really are a gal ‘oo knows ‘er own business. I admoyr that.” The smile that seemed to never leave his face peered over his shoulder, amber eyes catching the sun.

I couldn’t stand being around him anymore. I finally convinced my legs to move, and I continued down the path.

“Don’t follow me anymore.”

There was no response from behind me at first, and the rattling of his instruments didn’t continue. I kept walking, thinking he’d finally decided to leave me alone, when;

“Would ye loyk me t’elp ye?”

I stopped and turned again.

“What?”

“Gettin’ te Freeport. Me an’ the gals,” he gestured in the direction the two bardesses ran, “We know a shortcut.”

“But…you just said—“

“Ah, ‘salroyt. We need a gig anyway, an’ Freeport’s better’n nothin’. In case ye ‘aven’t noticed, they don’t exactly loyk us ‘ere.”

I pondered this for a while. Did I really want to travel with someone so inexplicably annoying? Could I even trust him?

His eyes were as sincere as his voice was behind that stupid accent. He smiled at me, waiting for an answer.

If he really knows how to get to Freeport quickly, then I suppose it makes more sense then taking the long road alone.

“Thank you.”

June 2017

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