Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong (Chapter XIV) – Good Ale

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Chapter XIV Of My Current Dungeons & Dragons Campaign, Which Began Over A Year Ago, As Written/Retold By My Player Who Plays Vilven

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

Chapter X – A Dialogue Of Friends

Chapter XI – Ineffective Planning

Chapter XII – Rivers And Races

Chapter XIII – Goodbyes And Reaquaintances

CHAPTER XIV

Beaden, adorned in his green cloak, stomped heavily toward the table where Vilven and Grid were sitting. His face was taut with anger, his bared teeth nearly frothing. His hair was an unkempt mess and his beard, which Vilven remembered as being surprisingly well groomed, had grown quite unruly since the near week that she had seen him last. When he reached their table he glared down at them, his blue eyes resonating his disdain.

Cho sighed heavily, more put together than his friend, though he did have a slight beard. Otherwise he looked the same as when Vilven first saw him, his short blonde hair tumbled handsomely to frame his face, his brown eyes brimming with patience. She noted girlishly to herself that he looked even more attractive than she remembered. Cho glanced at the Warden guard that still stood next to him at the entrance, then walked with silence to stand next to Beaden. Cho slowly moved his eyes down to Grid, then to Vilven, holding for a moment, then back at his fuming companion. His demeanor nearly observational.

Beaden looked at Cho, then back over his shoulder. “Well, what are you waiting for? Aren’t you going to arrest them?” Beaden whipped toward the Elven guard still posted at the door of the fancy tavern.

The guard looked respectfully at the bartender, whose focus was intent toward Grid, his eyes staring coldly at the back of the Tigron’s head. The guard then focused forward, his face flat as he marched methodically to the table. He tried with obvious difficulty to maintain his composure, angered from being spoken to in such a way from a human. The guard shot Cho and Beaden an untrusting and contemptuous glance, then he looked sharply down at Vilven. “Is this true? Did you steal these two…human’s weapons?” He interrogated.

“Good sir, you see…” Grid started

“I asked the lady what happened” The guard interrupted cooly.

Vilven glanced at Grid, then up at the three men looming over her table, her black eyes wide.

Then she gave a small smile and began in a gentle tone “This is all just a big misunderstanding…”

“A misunderstanding?” Beaden interrupted angrily, slamming his hands on the table, bending so his face was close to hers, his eyes almost crazed.  “You tied us up, took our weapons and our money, and left us in the middle of the forest to die!”

Vilven stared into Beaden’s eyes, then her’s narrowed, provoked. She could feel her magic, vibrating and hot, brimming at the surface. But for the first time, she could tell she was in control. She willed it into being, and nearly saw it cloud over the three men interrogating her. She looked away from Beaden to stare up at the Warden guard.

“We did take their weapons, but did they also tell you that they attacked us? Yes, Grid and I were in the middle of rest for the night, and these two wandered into our camp and, for whatever reason, tried, quite terribly, to assault us. It’s not my fault I can fight better and was able to disarm them.”

“Attacked you?” Beaden said in a shocked, pained tone. “It was a cold night, and my friend and I merely asked if we could share your camp!”

Vilven was equally as shocked, staring now at Beaden. Confusion and panic filling her mind. Did her magic fail? Though her magic to influence had been a happy accident against Wiendle, she knew that it had worked. But against this Beaden it seemed to have no effect. Had she done something wrong?

“That is not what happened!” Vilven said firmly, but her words felt flat to her. She swallowed and looked nervously around at all the eyes fixed on her.

The Warden guard, his face now in a plain scowl, whipped his head to glare accusatorially at Beaden and Cho.

Cho glanced around, rubbing the back of his neck, then sat heavily onto the chair next to him, opposite of Vilven. “You know she has a point. This really is big misunderstanding.” Cho said apologetically.

“Cho!” Beaden yelled. “What are you saying?”

The guard, regaining his composure, stood tall and forcefully grabbed Beaden’s arm.

“I apologize, my Lady. We will apprehend them at once.”

Vilven looked at the Warden guard, then paused. She realized she could see herself reflected in his eyes. Her deep blue hair framed her womanly face, her silvery skin nearly glittered. Her black eyes looked so large in his. And though it was a physical reflection, there was also something else. There was also a reflection of penetrating magic. With a slight smile, she glanced at Cho to see the same mirror of herself, of her magic. She hadn’t failed after all. Not completely.

Though Vilven felt it was a good lesson.

She glanced at Beaden. She’d come to learn her magic was not a guarantee.

“Oh, that isn’t necessary.” Vilven told the guard wickedly. “Let Grid and I take care of them. It would be our pleasure.”

The Elven guard smiled handsomely at her, “Yes, my Lady”. He released Beaden’s arm, then took a generously formal bow. He then turned quickly and marched out of the tavern.

Grid, who had quietly watched the events, leaned forward with an almost bewildered look on his lion face.  After a tense moment between the four of them, he cleared his throat dramatically, “Sit, Lad” He directed at Beaden, who shot him a not so friendly look. “Bartender, another round. And one for our friends here.”

The bartender raised his chin at Grid’s request as he polished a copper tankard. “I do not want humans in my tavern.” He replied pompously. “Nor do I want you, for that matter! I knew you were trouble the moment that you entered.”

“One drink and we will be gone.” Grid responded reasonably.

The bartender sneered, then walked to retrieve the drinks. “Very well. But you pay double.”

Grid looked annoyed but thought it best to keep quiet, “Excuse me.” He said formally to the three of them before he stood and walked over to the bar to retrieve the ale.

Vilven looked up at Beaden who was still standing, his eyes shooting spikes into Grid’s back.

“Why don’t you sit?” Vilven asked politely. He looked down at her, then at Cho, then angrily pulled out one of the carved, wooden chairs and sank into it.

“Thank you for dismissing that guard.” Cho said to Vilven, a boyish, crooked smile coming to his face.

Beaden’s hand twisted into a tight fist at Cho’s comment, but he remained silent, staring at the wall in front of him.

Ignoring Beaden, Vilven smiled back at Cho, her eyes gleaming.

Grid returned with the tankards cradled expertly in his large paws. He distributed them, then sat gracefully back into his seat.

As soon as the tankard was given to him, Beaden gripped the handle and gulped the whole pint down in one long drink. A few drops of ale ran down his chin as he chugged. Then he slammed the empty cup onto the table unceremoniously.

Then he took a deep breath and stood abruptly. “Come on, Cho. We should get out of this godforsaken town.”  With something like detached anger, he started toward the exit.

“You two can come with us.” Vilven suggested quickly before he was out of earshot.

“Really?” Grid, Beaden, and Cho said in unison.

“Yes, yes.” Vilven said impatiently to them. “Didn’t you say we were going South?” She asked Grid.

“Well, yes, we are, but…”

“We don’t really know where we’re going. You can come with us until we figure it out.” Vilven told Cho and Beaden adamantly.

Cho looked gratefully at them, “That’s very kind of you. What do you say, Beaden?” Cho asked him excitedly.

Beaden turned back, his face expressionless, to sit once again. He grabbed one of Vilven’s ales she had yet to drink and starting to chug it as he had done the first. “You go ahead, Cho. I’m not going anywhere with these two.”

“Whatever you say.” Grid responded, finishing off his ale. He stood, adjusted his bow and arrows, then made his way outside.

“Come on, Beaden. They don’t mean us any harm. We did enter their camp unannounced.” Cho pleaded to his friend.

“Goodbye, Cho.” Beaden said coldly to him.

“Why don’t you go help Grid find you two some weapons?” Vilven suggested to Cho. “We did sell yours after all.” She added with a small smile.

Beaden angrily jerked at her comment, but Cho just gave them both a thoughtful look, then nodded silently. He stood, his arm and chest muscles bugling under his shirt. He ran a hand nervously through his hair before he took a few steps toward the exit, his back to them.

“I thought we were getting to be pretty good friends there, Beaden.” Cho said over his shoulder. Then he walked briskly out of The Blue Faerie tavern, his red cloak billowing behind him dramatically.

Vilven watched him go, then focused intently on Beaden. She said nothing as she inspected his face.

“Does it grow quickly?” She asked curiously after a moment.

“What?” Beaden spat at her, looking both perplexed and annoyed.

Vilven leaned forward theatrically, her hair falling forward to cover the sides of her face. “Your beard.” She explained to him. But before he could respond she continued, “What do plan to do? Stay here and drink until they put you in a cage?”

Beaden took a deep breath in and out, then fell back into his chair, propping his foot onto his knee.

“In case you haven’t noticed,” he started in a condescending tone, “we are surrounded by forests. There are plenty of places for Cho and I to go and plenty of people that would be happy to pay us for our help.”

“Well, it looks like Cho is coming with us.” She pointed out.

Beaden looked a but taken off guard by her response, but he recovered quickly.  “Then I’ll go at it alone.” He said stiffly

The Elven bartender appeared next to their table, silent as a ghost. “The tavern has closed.” He managed through clenched teeth.

Beaden and Vilven looked up at him with annoyance.

But then Vilven stood and shot him a quick smiled, “Very well. Do you want to finish this?” She asked Beaden, indicating her second untouched ale.

Beaden grabbed the tankard in one stylish motion, then stood in front of the bartender challengingly. He chugged it nosily, the bartender’s face turning red, then dropped the cup onto the floor. “Good ale.” Beaden said with a nod.

Vilven couldn’t help but snicker. “Let’s go, Beaden.” She said, grabbing his arm. She looked back at the infuriated bartender as they made their way out.

“You’re funny, Beaden” Vilven said chuckling a few times as they walked away from the tavern. Beaden, beside himself, couldn’t help but laugh a few times with her.

“Well, now that you’ve decided to come with us, let’s see what weapon Cho and Grid got for you.” She said positively before she gave him a side long glance and winced. “And you should really fix your beard, it looked nicer before.”

“I didn’t say I was going with you.” Beaden said defensively while he ran a few idle fingers through his patchy beard.

“Yes you did” Vilven said faultlessly. Then she took a deep breath of the ocean air, ready to be close to the water.pirate-ship-1719396_960_720

 

Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong (Playlist Chapters 1-13)

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

Chapter X – A Dialogue Of Friends

Chapter XI – Ineffective Planning

Chapter XII – Rivers And Races

Chapter XIII – Goodbyes And Reacquaintances 

Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong (Chapter XIII) – Goodbyes And Reacquaintances

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Chapter XIII Of My Current Campaign, Which Began A Year Ago, As Written/Retold By My Player Who Plays Vilven

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

Chapter X – A Dialogue Of Friends

Chapter XI – Ineffective Planning

Chapter XII – Rivers And Races

CHAPTER XIII

Vilven assessed Warden more thoroughly as they made their way toward the docks of the small village. The High-Elves of Warden, who nearly floated as they walked, seemed very calm, almost serene, all very beautiful and put together. They reminded Vilven of what she thought angels might look like, though the Elves didn’t look altogether innocent. Their sharp features could even be described as somewhat jarring and harsh. Their demeanor also seemed, to Vilven, not necessarily heavenly. They were interestingly rather unaware of their presence, engaged fully with their own agenda, aside from the occasional disapproving glance toward Jaren and Wiendle.

“It is probably best if you don’t stare, Vilven.” Grid said under his breath, though his eyes remained focused in front of him. Vilven was a little shocked that the Tigron was somehow able to note what she had been doing without even looking.

“Sorry.” Vilven apologized to Grid.

Grid merely grunted in response. But Vilven did try her best to stop looking so intently at the people around her.

When they reached the docks, Vilven took a deep breath of the ocean air, the water glittered from the generous light of the mid-morning sun. Vilven felt the tug on her heart, and her race, but resisted the urge to dive into the inviting sea. She was certain that that behavior would not be accepted, even slightly. But she couldn’t help but smile at each dancing wave, her inner joy peaking through the restraint.

Grid, with an agile gait, walked toward one of the larger boats. There were people, mainly elves, boarding, walking slowly onto the deck of the ship.

“Is this boat going south?”

A younger, slightly more brutish elf who was pulling on some rope turned to Grid’s question.

“Aye, sir, ” The sailor elf responded, looking blatantly behind him at Wiendle and Jaren, though his face remained plain.

“Very well.” Grid responded and walked purposefully back to them. “This is to be the ship you two will take” He directed to Jaren.

“We will board at once ” Jaren responded stiffly, understandably anxious to leave the judgmental stares of Warden behind.

Grid nodded then extended a long, graceful arm around Jaren. He pulled him in close, talking to him in a barley audible tone. His grand lion-like frame crouched to warrant the secrecy.  Vilven glanced at them, narrowing her eyes, acute with curiosity. Vilven and Wiendle looked at each other, and Vilven put her arm around Wiendle shoulders, mirroring Grid. Wiendle wrapped her arms around Vilven in an embrace.

“Oh, Vilven. I am going to miss you so much! Thank you for all that you have done.” The petit, blonde princess cried out quietly.

Vilven closed her eyes tightly, taking in Wiendle’s words, a slight smile coming to her uniquely beautiful face.

“I am going to miss you, as well, Wiendle. Be good to yourself, and Jaren. Live your life as you please. You are free to be whoever you want now.”

Vilven pushed Wiendle’s shoulders back so that she could look into her pretty, blue eyes. “You are stronger than you look. Don’t let other people underestimate you, but most importantly, don’t underestimate yourself.”

Vilven’s words ran deeply within her, it was almost as if she was in some subconscious way talking to herself. There was a spark in Wiendle’s bravery, something in the young princess’ conviction of life and independence, that pushed Vilven to embrace her true power. She knew it was no accident Wiendle was the first person she met on this plane.

Wiendle, tears in her eyes, nodded and hugged Vilven again, sniffling into her chest.

“We should be going, my love. The ship is going to be leaving soon.” Jaren cooed to Wiendle, walking over putting a hand on her lower back.

“Take care of her, Jaren” Vilven ordered him, placing a gentle hand on his shoulder. Jaren smiled in agreement, “Thank you, Vilven.”

He urged Wiendle toward the boat that was now preparing to set sail. Wiendle waved generously to Grid as they walked past him, walking up the ramp onto the deck.

Vilven took a few generous steps to stand next to Grid. They stood and watched, almost mesmerized, as their two friends sailed away into the distant reaches of the rich, kindhearted sea.

Vilven wiped a single tear from her face then glanced up at Grid with a playful smile, “It looks like it is only you and me, now.”

“Just the way we like it.” Grid returned, then smiled generously at Vilven. “Now let’s go see if we can unload these Ranger’s weapons.”

Vilven glanced at the array bows, arrows, and swords that Grid was carrying. “Do you want some help with that?” She extended her arms out in offering. And then glanced again, at the ocean. “Do you think they would care if I took a swim?”

“They may not, but I do.” Grid said flatly, handing her the two bows. “Perhaps you can grab a swim after we sell them and get something to eat.”

Vilven held the two bows awkwardly in her arms and sighed in the direction of the water. “Fine. But you’ll have to ‘grab a swim’ with me then. Hopefully your tail helps with your ability to stay afloat.” She chuckled then took a few girlish skips toward the beautiful, intricately carved buildings.

Grid did not reply.

***

They made their way to sell the weapons. Though the female, High- Elf blacksmith they first encountered was extremely unfriendly, her twin sister was quite the opposite. She bought the swords for a fair price, and helped them with direction to a place to sell the bows and arrows. The bower, another female High-Elf, accepted the bows without negotiation. She was quite intimidated by Grid’s presence, even to the point of overpaying.

Grid was quite relieved to be done with carrying the weapons, rolling his shoulders to relax some of the lingering tension.  Vilven, in contrast, was exhilarated by their newfound money, and even convinced Grid to visit a jewel caster. He was reluctant, but could see the excited gleam in her eyes, so he agreed. Vilven walked the shop over, admiring all the different types of gems, asking for details from the halfling who ran the shop, even when she knew they couldn’t afford it. She eventually found a dark blue azurite ring, encased on a beautiful electrum band. The halfling, noting her innocence in the matter of negotiating, tried to swindle her. But Grid was an daunting adversary, and was able to haggle it down to a more reasonable price.

Vilven was admiring her new ring as they finally made their way to the tavern. A larger building than most in the village. The outside was lavishly decorated with detailed carvings of thick, lush trees and small, elvish-looking, winged faeries. The sign above the entrance was painted a deep, penetrating blue, naming the tavern “The Blue Faerie”.

“It’s beautiful” Vilven noted, before they walked through the elaborately painted swinging door.

The inside of The Blue Faerie was just as beautiful, even peaceful. Very different than what Vilven thought taverns were like.

“This is a tavern?” Vilven asked Grid quietly, looking inquisitively at everything around her. Her eyes fell on a very tall High-Elf that stood behind the counter. His eyes were squinting at them, his chin raised ever so slightly.

Grid walked through the tavern, easily avoiding the elegant, wood tables in the middle. Vilven hesitantly trailed behind him, still taking in the bewildering environment.

“Two ales, my good friend” Grid said to the elf behind the bar.

The elf looked at Grid haughtily. “You’re going to have pay for them.”

Grid shot an unfriendly smirk at the Inn-keeper, then placed two silver on the counter.

The elf picked up the coins with deliberately slow movement, then extended his arm toward a table.

Grid turned to Vilven and nodded his head toward the table that was indicated by the elf, then turned back. She went to the table and sat down, and sighed heavily, amazed at how good it felt to finally sit. Grid came moment later with the two drinks in shining copper tankards.

Grid sat down with grace, but he too sighed at the relief the chair. Settling in a moment before he took a long drink of his ale.

“This is ale?” Vilven asked, cradling the tankard between her hands. “I’ve never had it. Nothing really like this in the Water Plane.”

Grid slammed down his drink onto the table, gaining him a not so amused glance by the Inn-keeper. He wiped the foam from his lion-like face with his arm before replying.

“Indeed, it is” He said, nearly purring.

Vilven looked down into the tankard, then moved it to her lips. But before she could drink, a blasting sound came from the door of the tavern. Both her and Grid looked toward the entrance.

“There they are!” Beaden stood there, pointing accusatorially at them. Cho stood several feet behind, a Warden guard next to him. “They are the one’s that stole our weapons!” He continued.

Vilven looked, eyes wide with shock, at the two Rangers

“Oh, God” Grid said in a pained voice.

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Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong (Chapter XII) – Rivers And Races

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Chapter XII Of My Current Campaign, Which Began A Year Ago, As Written/Retold By My Player Who Plays Vilven

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

Chapter X – A Dialogue Of Friends

Chapter XI – Ineffective Planning

CHAPTER XII

“Are you sure you’re doing alright, Jaren?” Vilven asked behind her, her exotic voice clear as she walked in front of him in the dark forest.

“I’m fine.” Jaren said in a slightly irritated tone, since he had been asked that question almost non-stop since they were forced to leave their camp in the middle of the night.

They were all quite tired, their sleep having been cut short by two intruding Rangers. Cho and Beaden, they called themselves.

Grid offered to carry Jaren, as he had done earlier that day, but Jaren refused. Jaren was considerably embarrassed when he heard about his unconscious body being carried around, so he simply said he could just lean on Wiendle if he needed. Which he did.

But to his credit he did seem much stronger, and was walking close to normal, most of the time. So Vilven figured it might be best to fight the urge to check on him too much. A man’s pride did count for something. Though, at times, it did count for too much. As was the case of her father and many water elemental she had met throughout her upbringing. Memories of the Water Plane filled her mind. But she quickly brushed it off. It wasn’t the time to ponder such things.

So she looked ahead.

“What do you think those men wanted from us anyway, Grid?” Vilven inquired quietly to him.

The tall Tigron looked back at her from the head of the party, his frame quite frightening in the darkness, the many weapons they had taken from the Rangers hanging over his back. Her night vision dulled the golden of his fur so that he looked like some untamed, nocturnal beast.

“Difficult to say.” He said after a short pause. Then he looked forward again. “They are no thieves, I know that. But they definitely got that gold from somewhere.”

Vilven’s large, black eyes furrowed with pensiveness at his response.

***

They walked on, through the night. The sun slowly rose creating heavenly golden streaks through the breaks of the branches, the many varieties of small birds chirped happily to meet the morning.

They were all very relieved to be out of the dangerous veil of the night. Especially Wiendle and Jaren who did not benefit from the night vision Grid and Vilven had. But the vibrancy of the day did reveal to them how tired they were. It seemed the more gleeful the environment, the more exhausted they all became.

Vilven was very silent staring at the ground, forcing her legs to take step after step. Her tiredness was perhaps moving her into delirium, and perhaps it was an unfounded confidence she was feeling, but she was stricken by the quick growth she had gone through. She could feel how tired her legs were from travelling, but she could also feel her muscles adjusting and adapting, her physical strength catching up with her needs.

She also felt strength from trust in her magic, though she didn’t know much about it yet, and understood it even less, it was there for her in the moments she needed it most. It was something, she knew, she would soon rely on everyday. It was scary, but it was also becoming a part of her identity and what she thought of in moments of deep, self-reflection.

In a quick burst of energy, that threw her out of her thoughts, she could feel Areiden. She could feel her elemental blood. She could feel the water. The feeling made her shiver in excitement.

“There’s water. There’s a body of water somewhere.” She announced to them as she stopped, Wiendle and Jaren nearly walking into her. Her head shot to the left and the right, then the left again.

“It’s that way!” Vilven said with delight, pointing to the left of her. “Grid, let’s check it out.”

Grid sighed heavily with tiredness, but then responded, “We could use some water anyway.”

Without thought, Vilven shot toward the direction of the water. Her stomach tight with anticipation, her smile broad as she headed for it.

Then she saw it.

The trees of the forest halted to reveal a large, fierce river. The sound of the water was loud and turbulent, but was somehow still very soothing and bright. The water was clear, almost painfully so, which made everything around her look like some sort of hyper-reality. She never spent much time in rivers, as there were only a few on some of the islands scattered in the Water Plane, but she admitted to herself that she loved them.

They always seemed so busy to her, like they had to overcompensate in strength and quickness what they lacked in space compared to lakes and oceans. But it made them exciting to her, and the fish that lived in them were so unique.

She happily dived in with limber and grace, meeting the water with gratitude. Her muscles eased instantly. She couldn’t believe that it had been almost a week since she had swam last.

She held on to a rock against the harsh current as she peered over to see Grid, Wiendle, and Jaren arriving. She waved her arm over her head at them.

“It’s amazing, isn’t it!” Vilven shouted to them as the fish hustled around her.

Grid dropped the multitude of weapons to the ground, then walked over to the edge of the river to splash water on his face. He then stood tall, looking around to assess the safety of the area.

Jaren slowly sat, a hand to his side, while Wiendle girlishly laughed with exhilaration.

“Isn’t it just beautiful, Jaren! We would have never been able to see this if we had stayed at the castle!” Wiendle said to him. Jaren smiled and nodded, but he was only looking at her.

After about half an hours rest, Grid stood up authoritatively, picking up the discarded weapons.

“Vilven. Come. Let’s get on our way.” Grid called out to her in the water.

“Already?” Vilven called back to him. “Aren’t we heading in the same direction of the river?”

“For now, but at some point it will turn north again.” Grid replied.

“Well, until then…” Vilven said as she began to swim with the river in the direction of Warden.

Grid sighed tiredly again, then turned to the princess and Jaren.

“Princess, Jaren, Come.”

They traveled this way for the rest of the day, Vilven swam while Grid, Wiendle, and Jaren walked on the river’s edge. When night came, they stopped, had a quick dinner, then all rested. Vilven offered to take watch for most of the night, which Grid agreed happily to. He was a very strong being, but he knew and accepted that even he had physical limits, especially with such little sleep.

And though Vilven was still tired the next morning, the rest of them seemed remarkably refreshed and alert. Vilven thought, without regrets, that it was a fair price to pay to be able to swim all day.

And that is what she did, for the next two days before the river finally did start to make it’s way North. She helped them cross the water, then left it behind. Her heart renewed as she made her way forward.

All of their spirits were high, as the traveled the final days to reach the long awaited village of Warden.

The four of them walked through the edge of the trees to meet the small village.

“Warden, at last.” Grid said with a flourish

Vilven’s eyes grew wide with surprise at Warden’s beautiful structures. The wood was sanded down with careful precision, and there were intricate carvings adorning them, some of nature and some more abstract, which must have taken many years to complete.

She also reveled in the deep, penetrating depths of the ocean calling to her, as Warden was on the west coast of Varamore. She smiled as she saw a few ships in the docks, floating and swaying in the awaiting sea.

And as they made their way closer, she then took note of the people which resided there.

They were surprisingly tall. Not all as tall as her, but much taller than Jaren and Wiendle. All of them seemed to be lean and slender, which made them seem even taller. They had fair skin, sharp, long features, elongated with lengthy, pointed ears. Their dress was simple and elegant. Vilven thought, almost absentmindedly that they were quite an attractive race.

She watched fascinated as two of the males, who appeared to be some sort of guard, approached them in a nearly meditative, beautiful gait. They stopped solidly in front of them to halt their progress.

Both had rich, brown hair with alluring grey eyes, though their features didn’t strike Vilven that they were related.

One of them spoke, his voice clear and musical, though somewhat harsh.

“You there,” He said to Grid. “What business do you have in Warden?”

“Nearly passing through, supplies and passage South” Grid responded automatically.

“What about those two?” The other said in a denigrating tone, his eyes narrowing as his arm motioned disrespectfully toward Jaren and Wiendle.

Grid looked apologetic, though Vilven knew Grid well enough by now to know it was a ploy. “We’re putting them on the first boat out of here.” He responded with mock disdain.

The guard looked at Grid for a moment, then nodded in agreement.

“See that it’s done.” The guard said sharply, then moved aside to let them pass.

As they walked by them, though Vilven was purposefully silent, she did take a curious glance. They noted her look, slight smiles coming to their faces as they took in her beauty.

“My Lady.” One of them responded with an approving nod.

Vilven was somewhat surprised at his warm demeanor, but her face didn’t change expression.

When they were some distance away, Vilven looked at Wiendle and Jaren, who both seemed a bit offended.

“What was that all about?” Vilven whispered to Grid.

He shot her quick glance, then responded matter-of-factly.

“High Elves.”

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What Is ‘Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong’?

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What Is ‘Adventures Of Vilven Ledson’?

Just over a year ago, I began Running a One Person Dungeons & Dragons Campaign, with a Single Player.

A year plus later, the Campaign continues, and has Created & Left behind an immense amount of Story and Content.

My Player has fallen in love with her Character, a Water Genasi Warlock named ‘Vilven Ledsong’…

…so much so that last October she began Writing a Blog Retelling our Campaign’s Story from Day 1.

After Posting 10 Chapters/Posts, she decided she wanted to start Commissioning some Art for the Posts.

But first she needed to find an Artist, which she did in @living_silver

This First Piece of Art (Above) is of Vilven about midway through the Campaign (Maybe Level 8, she’s now Level 16), with her Patron behind her, ‘Areiden’, a Water Elemental (Water Lord with an Immense amount of Power).

My Player is Writing the Blogs, based on the Stories we’ve formed together as Dungeon Master & Player, and I’m contributing towards the Dialog of many of the NPC’s (Non Player Characters) I’ve created along the way.

But Vilven is all her.

I encourage you to check it out, she is a Gifted Writer, who I approached several years back to help me with a ReWrite of a Fantasy Novel I wrote, and have yet to Self Publish.

Enjoy!

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

Chapter X – A Dialogue Of Friends

Chapter XI – Ineffective Planning

Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong (Chapter XI) – Ineffective Planning

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Chapter XI Of My Current Campaign, Which Began A Year Ago, As Written/Retold By My Player Who Plays Vilven

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

Chapter X – A Dialogue Of Friends

CHAPTER XI

The next morning Jaren came to consciousness, but in agony from his aching injuries, passed out again within minutes. Wiendle was very worried about him, but Vilven, silently, was relieved he was still even alive, as the cuts and bruises on his body looked dire. The Goblins seemed to have fanatically jabbed and slashed all over, with little finesse, but with efficiency nonetheless.

After their intimate talk the previous night, Grid revealing the tragic history of Beaumont by the Dragon Sabot and Vilven revealing her choice to make a Pact with Areiden, they took turns on watch. They were both a little jumpy at the prospect of more Goblins, or worse, coming into the camp. It was Grid who made the official decision that they needed to leave, as he determined the location was too dangerous to dwell in for another night. They all agreed, especially Wiendle, but that forced them to figure out what to do about the hurt guard that lay before them. After a quick conversation, they determined that the best thing to do was for Grid to carry Jaren over his shoulder, as Jaren was rather lean and wouldn’t be too difficult for a large Tigron to handle. However, this would leave Grid without the reach and the inability to use his bow, so he would not be able to protect any of them in the case of another attack. This left only Vilven to protect them all.

Vilven hesitantly agreed, knowing that there was no other way.

So they moved forward, Vilven leading the group, grasping her sickles like an anchor. Having only little experience with tracking, the forest, and where Warden was, Grid had to give her direction from the back. At first it was a bit awkward to understand what he wanted from her, but she quickly gained the skill of accurately responding to his guidance. Wiendle, her head low, was very silent and hardly moved without permission. Vilven knew the guilt of running off and putting the party in danger was still fresh in Wiendle’s mind, so she didn’t do much to try to change the princess’ mood. Some emotions only lessen with time, Vilven had come to understand.

They were able to make it through a full day, a little slower than they might have if all had been normal, but they thought it successful regardless. The preparations for camp were completed with relative ease, even Wiendle helped to set everything up.

When the princess did decided to retire, and go to her and Jaren’s tent, Grid glanced at Vilven with a pained look, and began to roll his large, lion shoulders.

“Are you alright?” Vilven asked, concerned, peering at him from across the fire.

“Muscles are a bit fatigued.” He said, sharing with her easily. He stretched his arms over his head, his bones seeming to elongate with the motion. Vilven stared, unable to stop herself from thinking how much the movement made him look like a satisfied cat.

“Can’t say I’ve ever carried another being such a long distance before” Grid continued. “Fortunately, I keep in pretty good shape.”

Vilven smiled with amusement tilting her head, then she stretched her legs out in return. “Not to compare, but I am quite sore myself. I just can’t seem to get used to walking this much. It’s just so entirely different than swimming.”

“That it is, My Lady, that it is” Grid said, commiserating.

Vilven sighed, then stood. “If it’s alright, I’ll take the second watch. Unless you want to rest first.”

“Sounds good to me.” Grid responded as he took out his pipe. “Rest well.”

Vilven waved to him, with a big yawn, and walked to her bedroll, falling asleep almost as soon as she laid down.

***

Vilven woke to the sound of Grid talking with someone.

“Nice night, friend.” An unfamiliar male voice spoke. “Care if me and my comrade share your camp, safety in numbers, after all.”

“Well, that all sounds grand, friend.” Grid’s voice responded. “Other than just one thing, we have absolutely no idea who either of you are.”

Vilven sat up hastily, looking toward where she had heard the stranger’s voice.

She saw Grid sitting, cleaning his pipe, glancing up at two men. One of the men, she assumed the one who had spoken, stood at the opposite end of the fire, facing Grid, his head tilted to one side and his arms lifted in a friendly, inquiring manner. The other stood a few feet behind the first, though his expression, unlike his companion, was not so calm. The second was quite obviously nervous about something, his eyes shifting in all different directions.

Vilven quickly noted that they wore similar clothes to Grid, inexpensive blousey shirts, soft armour, and durable, inelegant pants in different shades of brown, except for vibrant cloaks. The first man wore a deep, forest green and the second man, a bright red. The first had dark brown hair, adored with a surprisingly well groomed mustache and beard, while the second was a dirty blonde. They both were armed with long bows on their backs and swords at their sides.

Almost offended, Vilven shot up to her feet. She pulled out one of her sickles and clenched it tightly in her hand. She walked dominantly next to Grid, and narrowed her eyes at the two strangers who had entered their camp.

“What’s going on here?” Vilven asked Grid, but did not stop looking at the men.

“Nothing to fear,” Grid began, his tone slightly sarcastic. “Just a couple of friendly Rangers passing through.”

Vilven looked at them dubiously, her eyes squinting even more than before. She saw the faint twitch of impatience in the eyes of the brunette man, failing to maintain his friendly demeanor, while the blonde continued his nervous glances.

She shook her head, and took a fighting stance. “They are not to be trusted.”

“My lady, by the Gods, I swear we mean you no harm.” The brunette started as he took a few steps around the fire, toward her.

“Liar.” Vilven spoke harshly,  instinctively lifted her hand in front of her, shielding herself from the man that approached. Before she knew what was happening she felt the magic spring from her, and a watery, blue orb blasted from her palm striking the man in his chest, knocking him to the ground. She gasped and her eyes widened in surprise.

The blonde man looked completely stunned as well, his eyes stared with shock at his prone companion, as he fumbled to unsheathe his sword. When he was finally able to wield the weapon correctly, Grid was already upon him. Grid leaped over the fire, with cat-like agility, and tackled him, pinning him to the ground.

The brunette man, however, jumped to his feet quickly. And with a sneer toward Vilven, he grabbed his sword and pointed it in her direction. “You’re mine.” He spat angrily.

But before he was able to make a move toward her, a frying pan smacked him squarely over the head. He stood there for a moment, but then his eyes rolled back and he fell unconscious to the floor.

Behind him stood the princess, her cheeks pink and her chest heaving quickly with adrenaline and fear, holding the pan over her head with both hands.

Vilven chuckled slightly, warmly looking at the princess. “Thank you, Wiendle.”

Then she turned toward Grid who was still on top of the blonde man.

“Let’s tie them up?” She suggested.

About ten minutes later, Vilven and Grid had taken all their weapons, their bows, swords, and daggers, and had them piled on the opposite side of the camp. The blonde man responded to their requests while the brunette was still passed out, so they just maneuvered and dragged him around. Vilven and Grid had the two men sitting on the ground. Grid, kneeling next to them, was tying them back to back.  The rope was taunt, but not overly tight. And just as Grid finished tying the last knot, the brunette man came to consciousness.

“Ow.” He said with a whine, responding to his aching head.

“Quit your moaning, you’re lucky to be alive.” Grid asserted as he rose to his feet.

While her Tigron friend was finishing with them, Vilven was on the other side of the camp, crouched near the weapons they had taken, inspecting them. “Do you think we can sell these?” She called out to Grid.

“In a heartbeat.” Grid responded.

“You’re gonna leave us in the middle of the forest without weapons?” The brunette said, exacerbated.

Vilven looked at the brunette man, then thought back to the terrible encounter they had with the Goblins. She looked thoughtfully down at the daggers they had taken. She picked them up and walked toward the tied rangers, dropping the blades about ten feet away from them.

“These should suffice.” Vilven said to them, sincerely.

“I’ve tied the ropes  loose enough, you’ll be out in about an hour.” Grid told them. “Next time you enter our camp, we won’t be so nice.”

“This is all your fault, Beaden” The blonde man said to his companion.

“You gave them my name, you idiot” Beaden responded back.

“Please excuse Beaden.  I’m Cho. Thank you for not killing us.” Cho said to them, with a friendly smile. Vilven smiled flirtatiously in return, noting how handsome this Cho was for the first time.

Just then, Grid’s eyes glanced sharply down at the two men, now revealed to be Beaden and Cho, noting small pouches at their sides.

“Well, well, what do we have here” Grid said, crouching down, cutting the bags loose with his knife, then tossing them to Vilven.

Vilven successfully caught them, then smiled mischievously.

“No, not the gold!” Beaden cried out at them. “I didn’t take you for common thieves.”

“Beaden, will you please stop insulting our captures.” Cho pleaded with him.

Vilven managed to open one of the pouches, it was, indeed, filled with beautiful, immaculate gold. It nearly overflowed with it. Vilven’s eye’s shined with excitement.

“This is a lot of money.” Vilven said dreamily, almost to herself.

“Vilven! Grid! Look!” They all turned to Wiendle as she emerged from the tent, with Jaren leaning on her. All of them stared silently at the young man. He was holding his side, but the slight smile on his lips showed how far he had come from his near death.

Vilven winked, then flicked a gold to him. “About time you showed up. you’re missing all the fun.” She told him with affection.

She sighed and smiled satisfied at Grid, “Tonight has been good.”

“Yeah, it’s been great.” Beaden said dryly.

beadenncho

 

 

Adventures Of Vilven Ledsong (Chapter X) A Dialogue Of Friends

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Chapter X Of My Current Campaign, Which Began A Year Ago, As Written/Retold By My Player Who Plays Vilven

Chapter I: Ouroboros

Chapter II: Pact Magic

Chapter III: Choice And Notice

Chapter IV: Meeting Wiendle

Chapter V – Catlike

Chapter VI – Encountering A Wizard

Chapter VII – A Charge And A Flame

Chapter VIII – Followed By A Lion

Chapter IX – Acquiescence

CHAPTER X

It took about half an hour, but Jaren had been fully bandaged and stabilized, his body covered with a thick, blanket. Grid, Vilven, and Wiendle let him rest while they decided what they were to do. But, in truth, Wiendle was of little help. She had not fully recovered from the emotional trauma of seeing Jaren so hurt, and just wanted to stay near him, offering little opinion to their next steps. She knelt near Jaren, lightly stroking his hair, staring at his face, as Vilven and Grid moved just out of her earshot to discuss what they were to do next.

But Vilven was going through her own kind of emotional strain, though she tried her best to hide it from Grid. She felt powerful, a strange feeling when power had never been a focus to her, yet she was faint with vulnerability and something close to a loss of self. What had happened to her was beyond her understanding and at the same time was all of who she was. She fought the feeling back as she stared up hard at Grid.

“Do you think we can stay here? Is it too dangerous?” Vilven asked, her throat feeling dry.

“We’ll stay here tonight. We’ll reevaluate the severity of his wounds in the morning.” Grid said clearly, glancing down at the young guard. “Dangerous or not, he’s too injured to travel right now.”

“Are we going to still guide them to Warden? Is she up to it, you think?” Vilven said, her voice quiet, watching the worry on Wiendle’s face.

His eyes moved to look at the princess, pausing for a moment. Then he nodded, his blonde mane glittering in the late afternoon sun. “We’ll get them there. She’ll be alright.” he said confidently.

Vilven nodded in return, confirming the plan. Vilven admitted that she was relieved they were still to move forward, she just hoped Grid would be right about Wiendle.

“We should probably start to set up camp then, right?” Vilven asked as she walked away, going toward Wiendle to tell her what they had decided. Grid agreed, then began the unpleasant task of pulling the husk bodies of the small, ugly creatures out of the area.

Meanwhile, Vilven squatted next to Wiendle, staring down at Jaren’s face with her, letting the quiet sit for a while before speaking. “Handsome, isn’t he.” Vilven said, putting a comforting arm around her.

“Yes, he’s…he is beautiful.” Wiendle said struggling with a sob. Vilven squeezed her tighter.

“He will recover. He’s strong.” Vilven said positively.

“I know he is.” Wiendle said with love. “I just feel so, just so…terribly. This happened to him all because of  me.”

“We all had our guard down.” Vilven assured her. “We all needed to be more careful. I won’t let this happen again. We best look forward.”

Wiendle turned to look at Vilven with gratitude, then hugged her deeply.

“Oh Vilven, You saved us! What you did…was scary but… I didn’t know you were a magical mermaid!” Wiendle whispered into Vilven’s ear. Vilven pushed her back a little, feeling awkward, even disturbed, discussing what had happened.

“I just wanted to let you know,” Vilven said, trying to change the subject. “Grid and I think we should stay here for the night. It would be best to let Jaren rest.”

Wiendle looked relieved, then frightened, then relieved again. “If you think that is best. I know you will protect us.” Wiendle said with a convicted tone, looking back down at Jaren.

Vilven looked shocked and doubtful at her, then stood. She was worried she had made a promise she couldn’t keep. Yet she was determined to keep it, even if it meant her life. And yet, she still felt Areiden. He was always there. Maybe she could be a protector, after all.

She walked to Grid then, he had moved all the bodies and was now collecting firewood. “What can I do to help with camp?” Vilven asked.

***

Grid tasked Vilven to set up the tent for Jaren and Wiendle. She made the tent wide, and put out the bedrolls with special care, adding more blankets from her own supplies. She knew it wasn’t exactly fit for a tired princess, or for a wounded guard, but it was the best she could do under the circumstances. They all had to help to move Jaren gently into the tent, and after, she realized that it was a wise decision that they had decided to stay the night. It would have  been very difficult to get far with him in that condition. Vilven then began to cut the vegetables for the stew she had come to love, even slicing some pieces of the stale but filling bread Grid had in his pack. Grid pulled a fallen tree into the camp for some sort of seat for them so they didn’t have to eat on the ground. He made the dinner quickly, and it was eaten even more quickly. Wiendle went to sleep right after she finished, though it was barley dusk, she was anxious to get back to her lover. Which left Grid and Vilven to take in the night air together.

Lowering the empty bowl to the ground in front of her, Vilven leaned back on the log, stretching her tired legs. “What were those things anyway? Those things that attacked Jaren?” Vilven asked, finally able to converse about what had happened.

“Goblins.” Grid said dramatically, as he prepared his evening pipe. “The forests are crawling with them.”

“I’ve heard of Goblins, but aren’t they mostly thieves in cities. That’s at least what I heard as a child.” Vilven said, thinking back to her memories of the stories the fish would tell her.

“Well, I’ve never heard that before. Basically they’re scavengers. And would just as soon tear at your flesh than anything else.” Grid elaborated.

“Oh.” Vilven said, questioning the other things she might have heard from sea life that wasn’t accurate. “They didn’t seem all that capable, to be truthful. But it was still scary fighting them.” she continued.

He took a long drag of his pipe, the smoke exhaling from his nose. “They rely on their numbers. Which you didn’t seem to have a problem with.” He said, almost in questioning, his cat eyes glancing at her.

She stared up at him, this Tigron that had become her friend. With a sigh of reception, she began. “You know, you asked me what race I was, earlier, near the lake?”

“Yes.”

“Well, I’m a genasi.” She paused to tried to gauge his reaction. “A water genasi.” she paused again, glancing at the fire now “I’m from the Water Plane.”

“I can’t say I’ve heard of a genasi. But the Water Plane makes sense, you’re one hell of a swimmer.” He said in acknowledgement, looking into the fire as well.

“Thank you, you’re one hell of a runner.” She said with a chuckle, then continued. “A genasi is part elemental and part something else. My father is a water elemental.” She paused, a sadness coming to her eyes. “I miss the Water Plane very much.”

He looked at her, noting her somberness. “I’m very sorry to hear that.” he said, throwing another log into the fire. “It must be beautiful there.”

“It really is.” Her tone became serious. “You see, I was banished. From there. The Water Plane. Elemental don’t much like genasi.”

His eyes flared in a flash of anger. “Rules and politics. Neither of which I subscribe to.”

“I guess that’s why you hide out in the forests and sit creepily on the outskirts of castles.” She said jokingly. Then she became serious again. “You still haven’t told me, really, about your dragon. Why she is there.”

He looked at her directly, his voice clear. “We’ll get there, but first you must tell me, does the magic come from being a genasi? Or something else?”

She paused and frowned at the question, the fire reflected in her dark, black pupil-less eyes. She swallowed, then faced him. “The magic, is new to me. It’s not from being a genasi. I received it by making a pact, a pact with a very powerful, elder water elemental, like my father. I’m not sure what he has planned for me. But he sent me here.” She sighed, amazed to say it all out loud. “I think the more I do things he likes, the more magic I will receive. Though he has not given me any true instruction. You’re the first person I’ve told all this.” she said, ending in a smile.

Grid smiled in return. “And I shall tuck it away and keep it to myself. Thank you for your trust.”

She looked up at him with an eyebrow raised. “The only reason I told you was because I wanted to hear about this damn dragon you keep talking about.” It wasn’t the only reason, but she liked to joke with him.

Grid paused and began to clean his pipe into the fire, similar to when they first met. But this time he did it more slowly, almost like he was needing to prepare himself to tell her what had happened. When he finally finished and put the pipe away, he looked at her intensely, his eyes penetrating hers as he began.

“The Kingdom of Beaumont was once a flourishing, thriving realm. I would go there from time to time, for certain supplies that are difficult to come by in my home village. The people there were unusually gleeful, most likely due to actually having a king that cared about them. One day while making my way there, I saw something that no one should ever have to see. A great, green dragon, swooping down upon the kingdom, unleashing her poisonous, gaseous breath. By the time she was done, half the people of Beaumont were slain, and the other half fled their home for good. You asked me why she came, I can only offer you this, beneath the great lake of Beaumont there exists a deep, cavernous lair, which she now, at least part of the time, has made her home. Beyond that, I can offer you no further reasoning for her diabolical and catastrophic deeds.”

Vilven looked at him, her face grief stricken from what he had told her, realization coming to her. She glanced at the tent Wiendle slept in, she had mentioned an attack on Beaumont affecting the king, and now Vilven knew what she was talking about, and realized the small princess was stronger than she appeared.

Vilven had no words for a long while as she turned back to Grid, staring at his golden fur.

Until, finally she broke the silence, “And that’s why you watch her?”

He nodded, his expression strong. “One day I will return there, and destroy her. Someday.”

Vilven looked down at her hands, unsure of where her magic and Areiden would lead her, but she looked nobly at him, making a promise. “Well, I will help you. When that time comes.”

He looked at her warmly, appreciative of her offer. It seemed they had become friends.

 

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