Stone Man Pass

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Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » March 8th, 2010, 9:34 am

[OOC: OK, new topic, but I'll leave the old one open a bit longer for any parting shots...]

Conversation flagged for a time as Sister Rose negotiated what was a not-very-good road back to the main one, giving her, and the others, some time to think.

I thought that being-watched sensation would ebb out once we got away from the ruins of Leonish. The girl must have been from there, and was living off the land. I bet that if we inquired among the farmers of the area, we'd find that there's been some minor pilferage going on. The land is fertile enough that they probably haven't worried about it ... but what did she do during the winters? I'm not sure I really want to know. And there's the fact that she looks like somebody from the Millenarian eugenics project...

The thing was, though, the sense of being watched wasn't going away. It was almost as though the girl was tagging along beside them unseen. Rose took the chance of glancing away from the road a few times, hoping to see a glimpse of jeans out in the woods, but she never saw anything more than flashes of ill-defined movement out of the corner of her eye ... maybe.

It was with some relief that she turned the wagon back onto the wider main road ... but the sensation still hadn't gone away, although it did weaken as the forest pulled back away from the road. Well, in any event, there was something else to think about now. A cloud cap was forming over the higher mountains at the southern end of the range, where they were heading. There was nothing out of the ordinary about that -- mountains made their own weather -- but Rose winced; if they hadn't spent so much time checking out the Leonish site, and the girl, they might have made it to the pass before the inevitable afternoon thunderstorms broke. Now it was going to be touch and go, at the minimum.

"Looks like rain," she commented to whoever might be listening, and indeed, the first roll of distant thunder applied an exclamation point to her observation.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Porcelain Fish » March 8th, 2010, 8:52 pm

"Well, it's a good thing we brought umbrellas," Maduin said brightly, blissfully unaware that the ragged girl dressed in dirt, leaves, and who knew how much filth was likely still trailing them.

He began to rummage in his luggage for said umbrella, coming up with a mirror (which he promptly used to check his hair and his face) in his search and a compact (taking a moment to dust a hint of color onto his cheeks) before finally extracting the large, paisley-patterned parasol.

"I do believe we're ready," he announced.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Sareth » March 9th, 2010, 12:02 am

"Maybe you are, but the rest of us are..." Lillith paused in her comment as a shadow draped over her. She blinked and looked up to see Brad holding his coat out over her head. "Brad? You'll get soaked like that..."
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » March 9th, 2010, 9:23 am

Well, that bumpershoot is either going to chase the rain away, or attract a vengeful lightning strike from Luminosita ... or maybe the spirits of this forest, if they have any taste, Sister Rose thought with no small bit of amusement. Maduin's sense of style could be ... interesting ...

The thunder was getting closer, though, and the rain was starting to pick up. "I think we'd better wait this one out," she said. "These mountain storms pass quickly, but they can be nasty while they're overhead. Let's pull into the trees. We should be safe from lightning as long as we're in among the forest, rather than standing under one isolated, tall tree." [OOC: This is true enough, and I'm quite possibly still alive today because of it. Little episode in the Colorado mountains... /OOC:]

A few minutes later, they'd got off the road and battened down the wagon, just in time for the main onslaught to hit. Brad was still doing his level best to shield Lillith from the rain, never mind that the trees were doing a better job of it than he could. Practical Rose simply found a boulder, high enough to rise above her head but not so high as to rise above the trees and attract a thunderbolt, to shelter under ...

... And she suddenly found the girl looking at her, her eyes wide and her brand new jeans getting quite wet.

"H-h-help me," the girl stammered, as a lightning bolt hit a tall tree nearby.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Porcelain Fish » March 9th, 2010, 11:43 am

Maduin flinched as the tree shattered and regarded his companions, quickly getting soaked through, (in particular, Lillith and the clothes he'd just bought her) and frowned slightly. Brad's jacket really wasn't doing Lillith much good, and while Rose and Argus didn't seem to mind the wet, Fayna would not be happy if her father caught something inconvenient like pneumonia. Fortunately he'd come prepared.

He shoved the umbrella into Brad's hand without a word, absently muttering a rain-ward charm under his breath that had droplets sheeting off of a small invisible bubble over his head and shoulders, and trudged back to the wagon.

A few minutes and he came up with an oblong parcel a good three feet in length, half a foot in width, and half a foot thick. He found a decently open space in among the trees, stepped back, and let the rain fall on it.

The parcel swelled, growing, making little popping and squeaking noises as it expanded upward under what had become a steady downpour, until a large, bright green pavilion stood hemmed in by the trees, the top of the peaked roof giving off a dim emerald light.

"This way if you please, Dr. Cleiviein," Maduin said with a smile as he quickly shuffled the older Tsuirakuan in out of the rain and into the warm golden light of the tent's interior. "Come in, come in," he called back to the others. "No sense standing out in the wet. This doesn't look like it'll blow over any time soon."

Thankfully the tent came as advertised, with a small section screened off for privacy (his eyes darted to Sister Rose's foundling as he tried to decide which soap bar he really didn't want anymore) and "camp-style" equipment, complete with folding chairs, eight sleeping bags, and authentic-looking heatless lanterns.

Not exactly the height of vogue, but under the circumstances, he decided, it would do.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Drannin » March 9th, 2010, 1:52 pm

Argus was glaring at the ground, angry at it for having so little mineral matter he could re-shape into a shelter, when Maduin solved the problem for him. Argus chuckled despite himself; the young man was odd, but damned if he didn't come prepared. As he was about to step into the tent, however, Argus suddenly heard a stuttering voice behind him. He turned around... to see a rather disheveled and familiar young girl pleading with Rose for help.

Then a lightning bolt hit a nearby tree. Maybe there was enough ambient metal to make a lightning rod or something. But more importantly, it looked like the young girl HAD followed them after all.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » March 9th, 2010, 2:27 pm

Sister Rose had lived in Kiyoka for long enough not to be too overwhelmed by Tsuirakuan thaumato-technology, but she was still mightily impressed. The scene had its ironies, though: all this elaborate preparation for a mountain storm that would likely pass in half an hour or so. Maduin's command of magic and magical gadgetry was impressive, but he could stand to learn a little about life in the wild. (Well, he's a city boy, Rose thought; that's to be expected.) She abandoned her rock shelter for these rather more comfortable accommodations.

A soaked Brad entered the tent behind a slightly less soaked Lillith, and Drusia also entered ... but the castaway girl stood outside, staring at the tent, panic in her eyes. Her gaze darted from Rose, standing at the door, to the tent, to the wagon, back to the tent, to the sky ... and another lightning bolt struck somewhere nearby.

"Quickly!" Rose called. "We'll dry you off when you get inside!" The girl looked around again, an unreadable expression crossed her face ...

... And suddenly she was inside the tent, her motion too swift for Rose's eye to follow.

"Th-thank y-you," she stammered, as thunder crashed once again.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Porcelain Fish » March 9th, 2010, 3:24 pm

Maduin held back a grimace with an effort as little Miss Speedy Needs-a-Scrub popped into the tent. In his opinion staying outside where the rain could at least give her a decent rinse would have been a much better option. Still, there was no help for it.

The freesia, he decided as he sorted through a bag, returning to the tent with the bar of soap, a towel, and a large basin, which he promptly handed to Sister Rose.

"For our young . . . friend," he said with a bright smile, giving Rose a pointed look and nodding at the screened off section of the tent.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » March 9th, 2010, 10:22 pm

Sister Rose rolled her eyes, then turned and smiled at the girl. "Here. You can use these." She carried Maduin's supplies (where on earth did he store all that stuff?) into the impromptu changing room, then quietly withdrew, shaking her head. The tent was remarkable enough, but how could he possibly have fit a five-gallon jug of rosewater in there?...

As the girl slipped into the partitioned-off corner, it dawned on Rose that her top (such as it was) was not only sopping wet, but unlikely to survive being taken off and reapplied after her cleanup. "Wait a minute. I'll be right back with something you can wear," she said. The rain might have been slacking off just a little, and she didn't get too wet as she dashed to the wagon, extracted her bag from under the tarpaulin, removed a simple blouse, and ran back to the tent ... but not before she noticed that a very bedraggled, and unhappy-looking, parrot was sitting on the frame of the wagon.

Well, the parrot could wait; priorities were priorities, after all. She passed the blouse through the flap "door" to the changing area, where scrubbing sounds could be heard coming from the inside.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Porcelain Fish » March 10th, 2010, 10:11 am

Maduin felt his discomfort ease at the sound of earnest scrubbing on the other side of the screen in the tent, tension leaving his shoulders. It wasn't that he particularly disliked the girl in a personal sense. He didn't even know her after all, but the sight of that filth was just . . . ugh.

With a sigh of relief, he sat in one of the folding chairs, now prepared to wait much more graciously for the rain to pass.
Last edited by Porcelain Fish on March 10th, 2010, 11:22 am, edited 2 times in total.
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