The Great Library of Palanthas

An Aesthetic shows you to a small reading room.

Stories of Ansalon from the view of Arikaih.

A little gully dwarf runs by and says 'Wordwrap Off 65 80.'
The gully continues 'Eyes hurt? Turn Color OFF!! (regular story dates)

Astinus says 'Enter the main library here to view only the author list.'
Astinus gently places a gorgious hardback on the table in front of you.
You note the spine bears the word 'Arikaih' scribed in light yellow ink.


Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sun Sep 10 08:19:59 2006
Subject   Discomfort

She entered the city of Neraka, walking beside the Lady of Night and her
wulfbunde companion, Eshri.  Yet for her training as a young half-elf in
Silvanesti, she would have much preferred to have stayed in the woods
outside the place.  And she was not alone in her thoughts.  The other
members of the Bundesphar and their wulfbunde companions felt the same way. 
Yet they were the lucky ones.  They did not have orders from the Voice of
Takhisis to accompany her into the city proper.  

She shuttered visibly and cursed inwardly to herself for Dante's mysterious
quest that absented her pack mate from her side.  So, now, here she and
Eshri stood, cautious in Neraka.  She made passing glances around her at the
people on the streets, as though daring them to step forward and confront
her.  

In the crowds, she spied hooded members of the Bundesphar, all awaiting a
call from either her or Eshri.  That was true discipline.  Not some made up
version of it.  It was how the pack should act, as one complete unit.  One
unit to protect and watch over all other members.  She allowed herself a
smile for only a moment as she knew that they had warmed to her and Eshri. 
She was a mere mage, one who turned from the following her her own father to
seek what her mother had known.  And she had found it.  

Her attention was drawn back to a massive structure before her.  It seemed
to reach upward to tear at the clouds in the sky.  Arikaih shuttered, but
kept her steadfast pace.  

Loud trumpets heralded the arrival of the Lady of Night.  Arikaih growled
out words to the young Knight who had met them at the city gate about the
annoyance of sound, only to be answered by the Lady herself.  'It's still
too much, ' she thought, but said nothing more.  

Then, the doors opened and the strange quartet entered the Temple of
Takhisis.  The Lady and the Knight went forward to offer their prayers at
the altar.  Arikaih and Eshri stayed toward the back of the Temple, Arikaih
kneeling with Eshri laying beside her.  She, too, offered up her prayers to
Takhisis.  

Then the Lady disappeared into the Temple proper.  The Knight approached her
and offered her insult, thinking that she was to be dressed as befitting a
simple courtesan.  The insult taken offensively, Arikaih stepped forward to
show just why the Bundesphar had grown to accept her.  With fierce
determination, she stood up to the Knight.  The only reason that she retired
into the temple was the fact that the Voice of Takhisis wished for her to be
there.  Otherwise she felt as though the Knight and his small group of
squires would not have stood up to the forces of the Bundesphar.  

Now, standing in a confining room within the temple, she glared at the
squire that had been assigned to dress her.  The squire stepped forward to
start undressing her.  Eshri met the young woman with her hackles raised. 
Arikaih turned to the woman.  "Eshri, no.  Go outside the temple doors and
call for Fron.  She will assist me.  I will have no assistance from a puffed
up peacock."  The wolf seemed to nod and bounded out of the room.  Within
moments, a Bundesphar and her wulfbunde accompanied Eshri into the small
room.  The squire grew red in the face, but quickly left as the wolves began
snapping at her.  Fron stepped over and shut the door.  

Arikaih looked to Fron.  "I am not some poppinjay who will be dressed to
their amusement.  I am the Alpha Female of the Bundesphar."  Fron nodded. 
Fron knelt beside her wulfbunde companion and spoke quietly with her.  The
wolf growled her consent and Fron opened the door.  The wolf bounded out and
Fron closed the door.  "Since you are needed to be clean, take advantage of
the warm water, Alpha.  It may be some time until we find such a luxury
again."  The cleric stepped forward and started unbuckling the slight armor
that Arikaih had grown used to wearing.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sun Sep 10 15:59:12 2006
Subject   Confining walls

She shook her head.  The Knight known as Itobi had entered the rooms in
the temple to berate her for dismissing the woman from her service.  Then,
he had the nerve to call her barbarian.  A smirk crossed her face.  'Poor
fool, ' she thought.  'Perhaps it is best that I leave before anything
happens.  I'm not really needed here for anything.  I should really be out
there, feasting with the Bundesphar.  ' 

She slowly approached the door, but it was swung open by Fron who held up
the finished jerkin.  Arikaih shrugged into it and Fron belted it closed. 
Nodding, Fron walked to the door and bowed to Arikaih.  She turned to Eshri
and spoke quietly to her.  The wolf nodded to Fron and forced Arikaih to the
main temple area to await the arrival of the Lady of Night.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sun Jan  7 07:04:38 2007
Subject     Sorrowful Howl

The red tinted walls of the mountain seemed to close in around her. 
Eshri had gone off hours before, impatient to be out and hunting again, and
Arikaih could feel herself get the feeling of being closed in and
surrounded.  She paced back and forth, her eyes closed, yet the all too
familiar pattern of the walls of the chambers etched into her mind.  She
longed to be outside and running over the grass with the wolves.  

The scratching of nails echoed throught the empty hallways and bounced off
the walls in the empty rooms.  Arikaih turned her head as Eshri entered,
followed by her 4 puppies.  She looked at them with a smile.  The puppies
were growing, romping and fighting as youngsters would.  Inwardly, she
worried about the little black male that had taken such a liking to Lord
Saige before his abrupt disappearance.  For a while, the little black was
moody and bit everyone around, but now he seemed to be focusing on playing
and having fun.  Eshri approached Arikaih and growled softly to her.  When
she was finished, Arikaih nodded and asked her to send a message to her
bondmate, telling him to meet her outside the main gates to the city of
Sanction.  It was time that they moved on and left the solemn chambers to
the man who had deserted them.  

Her message in good hands, Arikaih and the wolf puppies made the treacherous
hike out of the volcanic mountains and to an open area near the gates of
Sanction.  

Once there, Arikaih sat down and threw her thoughts to the death that she
had learned about.  Eventhough Maria'sana had not been a positive and
attentive Thorn toward her, Arikaih still felt the loss of the former Thorn
Leader deeply.  She thought of what might have been and how things could
have been if the young mage had been taken by the Thorn instructors.  She
could have been someone to be feared in the magic community, instead of the
Commander of the WolfBound.  She closed her eyes and lowered her head in
silence.  After a while, she lifted her chin and threw a solemn howl into
the dark sky.  The puppies looked at her for a moment, then sat on the
haunches and joined her in the requiem for the dead that they had chosen to
give.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sun Jan 21 08:21:13 2007
Subject     The call from beyond

With a forelorn wolf's howl following her, Arikaih set herself back on
the path that she had started traveling.  It was as though there were a pull
that forced her along this pathway, guiding her and setting her feet one at
a time.  Before her loomed a cave, it's entrance dark and mysterious, yet
the young mage was not afraid.  She entered the cave alone, slipping down
the mossy, muddy entrance until the pathway made an abrupt turn and sloped
sharply downward.  Losing her footing, she fell and slid helplessly to the
bottom.  

Stars floating in her vision, she carefully stood back up and whispered
arcane words, creating a small bubble of light that illuminated the area
around her.  A jewel seemed to pulse in one corner of the room and Arikaih
slowly made her way to investigate.  It was a mighty Ruby, as red as blood
itself, sitting alone on a platform of snow white marble.  The contrast of
the dark cave was sharp.  Surrounded by black and darkness, this marble was
a strange thing to see.  In all this room, it seemed out of place and alone.
Not even the Blood Ruby was strange to her.  

She walked around the marble platform, the instincts from the wolves that
she traveled with strong and hinting at danger.  She felt drawn to the Blood
Ruby, compelled to reach out and touch it, yet she held her hand back and
only looked at it.  She finished the inspection of the platform and walked
back to where she had first entered the room.  The passageway was almost a
straight drop.  She would not be able to climb out of it on her own.  She
lifted her head in a howl, alerting her bondmate, the golden wolf Eshri, to
her predicament and asking her to bring Dante to her.  They howl was
answered.  This answer heard, she sat down against the cave wall and
watched, her eyes never stopping movement.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed May  2 11:53:29 2007
Subject     oops


Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed May  2 12:20:57 2007
Subject     Blood Red

The wolf returned to her side, her muzzle red with blood from her kill. 
The almost grown wolf puppies followed their mother's suit, sitting at the
side of the lone woman.  

Arikaih looked around, seeing the wolves and smiling.  She looked down and
growled softly to her companion wolf.  The golden wolf turned her head
toward Arikaih, seeming to nod.  

"Soon Eshri.  Soon it will be time.  I have already sent the message to the
only one person I trust.  If he betrays me, then the honor of the followers
of the Queen is lost and there is nothing left of honor nor glory to those
following the once calling herself the Voice.  I tell you, she's good.  She
fooled me at one time, but the "False Voice" has shown her true colors and
they are yellow."  

Arikaih moved quietly and quickly towards her hidden location, disappearing
once again into it.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Fri May  4 12:10:35 2007
Subject     The wonders of the cave

Night seemed to fall, yet to the dark accustomed eyes of Arikaih, it was
as though everything was on display to her.  She stepped out of the cave and
stretched, meeting the fresh air outside her hiding place with welcome.  She
growled softly and was joined by her companions, the wolves with whom she
traveled.  She quietly whispered words of magic and shimmered, shifting her
shape to that of a red tinged wolf.  This done, she turned to her companions
and growled.  

The wolves hunted together, bringing down small game for their meals.  Then
a familiar smell assaulted her nose and Arikaih crept toward a dark place. 
There stood large hairy beast.  She stayed in the shadows of the building,
watching.  The beast did not notice her, or at least, did not let on that it
noticed her.  She shimmered and returned to her elven form and pulled a
piece of paper from a pouch and wrote some words on it.  She then nailed it
to a tree and returned to the wolven state.  That deed done, she continued
on her hunt.  

The meal caught, the wolves pulled the carcasses to where they had been
living since the problems in the camp.  Arikaih returned to her elven form
and pulled her dagger out and started to skin the carcasses and clean them
for eating.  The meal eaten, she sat by the entrance to the cave and
watched, waiting to see if the one she left the message for would come, or
if what she feared was true.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu May 31 22:24:16 2007
Subject     Lonely howl

She stood near the edge of the woods, looking at where the battle had
taken place.  She shook her head and sank down on the ground.  A golden wolf
walked from the woods and sat beside her, looking at her with a slight
growl.  Arikaih turned her head and looked at the wolf, nodding.  "I agree
Eshri.  There is few places where we will be accepted or wanted.  I believe
that it's time to step back and return to where we are useful."  

As she stood up, she removed a lightweight grey colored cloak from her
pouches.  "I have no use for this either, they don't seem to care."  She
took one last look at the battlegrounds, sighing.  "If we are needed, then
let them come to us.  Let us find my mate and be done with this farce."  

This said, she laid the cloak on a tree branch and disappeared into the
forest.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Tue Jun  5 23:39:39 2007
Subject     A forest run

It felt natural, running as a wolf.  The form itself presented no harm to
her, or those around her.  The wolves accepted her as both half elven and as
wolf, so, why not run with them.  

They streaked along, the four of them; her bond mate and three of the
puppies.  The other puppy she had asked to remain with the traitor turned
follower in case he needed their help.  

She could not locate the scent of her life mate.  He had his own travels to
make and she could not wait.  She had smelled something familiar from her
past.  She had taken blood once before, now this one traveled through the
woods and she had heard that he did; the other wolves had told her.  

She reached the woods where the familiar thing walked.  She slowed the pack,
scenting the air with her nose.  It was not as keen as the real wolves, but
she still sensed things that were near.  She shimmered, returning to her
humanoid form and sat on the ground, waiting in the shadows of the tree to
see if she was correct.  

Her red tinged eyes caught movement.  She tensed her hand on her dagger. 
She glared at the thing, wanting it to be like the one she had killed many
years ago.  She wanted the blood on her hands to show them that she was not
to be found.  And it came into view.  

She growled in her frustration.  It was a mere human child; not an adult elf
like the bastard that had sired her and turned her away when all that she
wanted was his acceptance and love.  He had turned away from her because of
the taint of human blood in her.  He blamed her for his own lust.  

She sat on the ground beside the tree, angry with herself for wanting the
death of a pure blood so bad.  She tossed her head against the tree, seeing
stars as she connected with force.  With pain in her forehead, she
whimpered.  The child heard her and walked her way, seeing her and cocking
his head to the side.  "Are you hurt?"  The child asked in his little voice.
She looked at the child, not understanding the human words at first.  She
didn't believe that the child would not have run from her.  She was an
abomination to the laws of nature; her father had told her repeatedly.  

He asked her again.  She shook her head.  "I am fine, just hit my head on
the tree," she said, looking away from him.  The child smiled.  "If you need
it, mommy can put a bandage on it and make it all better," he said the smile
on his face brilliant and bright.  She shook her head, suddenly afraid.  "I
can't go there, they won't accept me.  I'm tainted," she said, her father's
words coming out of her like a litany from the past.  The child looked at
her strangely.  "What's tainted?"  He asked, a frown on his face.  

She looked at him with confusion.  She had never heard of a place where she
was not accepted with not a thought towards what she was.  Even at Storm's
Keep, she was treated as an outsider, not accepted by those of the magic
order, nor the leader that was in charge when she was admitted into the
Knights of Takhisis.  The only one who accepted her was Dante, and he became
her mentor and lifemate.  And he was gone, not at her side any longer.  In
fact, she did not know where he was.  Again she looked at the child.  "I
don't know, little one.  I was told that many years ago by someone who
should have cared for me.  It's just stuck with me," was the only response
that Arikaih could tell the child.  He smiled joyfully.  "My name is Maddy. 
What's yours?"  He asked in childish glee.  Arikaih smiled.  "I'm called
Ari."  The child clapped his hands together in glee.  From the distance a
voice called out for the child to come wash up for supper.  Maddy frowned. 
"I have to go, but I'll be back tomorrow.  You will here Ari?"  He asked,
turning to go.  Arikaih nodded.  "I will be here."  She watched as the child
called Maddy ran away from her, not in fear, but in childish abandon.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Fri Jun  8 12:02:11 2007
Subject     Times past

She ran, her heart pounding in her chest, trying to escape from its
confinement.  

She ran; the hope that the nightmare deamons from her past would not catch
up with her and torment her any more.  

She ran.  She had been foolish enough to think that she would not encounter
one of THEM there.  

She ran, hearing the howl of her companions running behind her, trying to
catch up with her hurried flight into the forest.  

Yet she still ran; the memory of what he had said to her running vividly
through her mind.  

He had found her secret, the buried desire that she had hidden for so many
years.  He probably didn't even realize it; she had left quick enough to
make sure of it.  Yet a small part of her still wanted to return to him; to
speak with the full blood elf more, hearing and learning about the moons he
spoke of; to know more about the son of Her Queen.  

Her Queen; the very thought of the hatred and anger that might befall on her
because of her thoughts and almost betrayal caused her to shiver, slip, and
lose her footing.  She tumbled in the wet underbrush of the trees and
groundcover, sliding and slipping as she tried to stand back up.  Finally,
she sat there, wrapping her arms around her shoulders to ward off her
personal deamons.  

She vividly remembered the other one, the dark one, the one like him that
had said things to her.  He was the one who had put her in the darkened
chamber by herself, alone with no one to talk to.  He promised things, just
like the others like him she knew and remembered.  She had gotten free, but
at her Order's expense.  She had been a foolish child, but still old enough
to have the regrets of her stupidity.  

It was not cold out, but she shivered, wrapping her arms more tightly around
her and she pulled her legs up close to her.  It struck fear in her, the
mention of THAT forest; Wayreth Forest, the towers and home of the Conclave
of Mages.  Her young life had been filled with the hope that her own father,
a White Robe Magus, would look favorably on her skills, seeing that she was
like him; her dream to follow in his footsteps.  That he would place her on
the pathway to follow.  Yet it was not to happen.  

His hatred of what he had created in her by her birth had clouded her
childhood and her learning.  He had hated her and her mother.  He turned
from her presence at every chance, teaching the sons and daughters of full
blood elves like him while ignoring her.  So instead of studying, she gave
up trying to please him and show him what she could do, heading to the
forest that surrounded Silvanost; the creatures becoming her friends and
allies.  

Then they had hunted her, called her an abomination and her blood tainted by
the blood of the human woman that had bore her.  And she ran, hiding in
caves; the caves that seemed to speak to her and call to her to seek her way
in the world.  Until the day she had found him in his tent and had snuck up
behind him.  She closed her eyes, shaking her head in frustration as she
recalled the memory of her dagger sinking into his heart and the blood
covering her hands.  She had killed him, using her self-taught skills in
magic to burn his corpse.  

She shook her head, the memories of the past burning in her mind; the hope
for training in her skills and art from the promise of Lord Saige.  She
remembered her fear as she stepped onto the deck of the boat with her
savior, afraid of what lay ahead.  Then there was the thrill; the excitement
of not being able to stop the wind that pushed the sails, nor the water that
the boat moved over.  

Yet the training promised to her had been replaced by yet more
disappointment; she had been ignored by those she had been left with; She
did what she was used to; exploring and learning and making friends with one
who would later become more than a friend; more than a mentor and protector.
Then the other one had sent her away from him; she still had no knowledge
why it happened, but it was a good thing, bringing to her the wolves that
she called companions.  

A twig snapped nearby, drawing her from her closure.  She slowly knelt up,
calling on her feeble attempts and succeeding in cloaking herself.  She
waited, her hand on her dagger, her mind trying to call on something she had
saw in the books she took from her father to protect her.  The flash of
golden fur seemed to settle her.  Her bond mate walked into view and Arikaih
returned to sight, sinking back down under the tree.  Eshri walked up to
her, laying down beside her, the golden wolf's head on Arikaih's leg.  

The wolf growled softly.  Arikaih shook her head.  "No Eshri.  I don't know.
THAT one was different.  It was like he saw directly into me and pulled out
what I wanted.  Not even the ones before him did that to me."  She wrapped
her arms around her shoulders, pulling herself tight in a hug.  

The wolf raised her head, a howl coming forth as she called to those like
her.  Then she pressed close to Arikaih, offering the comfort that was the
eternal bond between the human and wolf.  Arikaih pressed close to the wolf.
"The choice is mine, but will you honor the choice I make?"  She said, her
voice quietly pitched to the wolf.  The wolf lifted her head, seeming to
nod.  Arikaih smiled.  "That is good.  I don't even know what I am going to
do."  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Jun 14 11:25:51 2007
Subject     Grumblings and mischief

She was feeling a bit angry.  The walls of the small room seemed to be
closing in on her, but it was her own fault that she had drawn her weapon
against the minotaur who was a Master of Magic.  As was her custom, she had
surrendered her weapon and her freedom to him.  And he had taken her from
her bondmates and from the freedom she was accustomed to.  Instead she now
sat at a table with spell books, forced to dress in a grey robe that was the
uniform of a Thorn knight.  

She shifted on her seat, wishing for the leggings and sleeveless tunic she
always wore.  The mage to whom had been assigned to teach her this morning
walked behind her and grumbled about her.  She turned her head slightly,
growling under her breath at him.  It was moments of circulating glares
between the two of them before the mage walked out of the room and Arikaih
sighed, returning to studying the same book that she had been looking at for
the past hours.  

More time passed, causing more friction in the already hostile room.  The
mage shoved a piece of parchment in front of her, telling her to scribe a
spell.  Arikaih looked up at him and pointedly crumbled the parchment in her
fist, lobbing it at his head.  He stood taller, his face contorted in anger.
He pointed a hand at her, whispering.  She stood quickly, herself whispering
and shimmering, her form changing to that of a wolf.  She bounded out right
in front of the lightning bolt that the mage sent toward her as a teaching
tool.  

She continued moving, slinking in the shadows until she reached the safety
of the outdoors.  She ran quickly, moving along the wall of the castle until
she reached the rocks on the beach.  There she shimmered, returning to her
humanoid form and she sat, looking forlornly across the water toward the
bank nearby.  

After a few moments, she sighed, pulling a well worn spellbook from one of
the pouches they had allowed her to keep.  Finding a more comfortable
position on the rocks, she opened the book and began studying, knowing that
the mage that had tried to teach her would go find the minotaur and then
there would be hell to pay.  She should at least give him some reason to
think that she was trying.  He did promise her that if she indeed studied,
he would allow her to see Eshri, and that kept her sane and sated, but the
time would come soon when she would need the open air and the run.  Time
indeed would come sooner than she wanted.  And neither her human form, nor
the minotaur would be able to stand in her way.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Fri Jun 22 03:05:48 2007
Subject     A simple step

She sat in that same room, the same book in front of her, the same tired
old boring mage glaring at her from the corner of the room.  She asked to be
let out for a break.  The mage agreed.  

She walked quickly out the southern gates, looking to see if her senses were
correct.  Indeed they were as she spied the ship that would be leaving for
Kalaman.  She shrugged out of the grey colored robe.  Underneath the robe
was the leggings and shirt she usually wore, her belts at her waist.  She
smiled and walked to the gangplank.  She slipped the man at the gangplank a
few coins and the man looked away.  She walked aboard the ship and headed
below.  

The ship set off from the dock.  After a while, she walked out onto the
deck, glaring back at the fading dock.  She snarled her nose, growling and
hissing.  She walked toward the other side of the deck and tilted her head
back, a full wolfish howl coming from her throat.  This was her call to
freedom and the personal promise of things to come.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Mon Jul 23 00:22:15 2007
Subject     Boredom

Sitting quietly in a quiet room, Arikaih studied the open spellbook on
her lap.  Her studies and her outings to the forest nearby was the only
thing that she did.  She waited for the day that one of the two elves would
return to speak with her.  

Her thoughts drifted to the letter that the unfamiliar wolf had delivered to
her.  She had lost the one man who was important to her.  He had died, then
returned, but it was not him.  She shook her head, angered that the thoughts
of what she had once had was now gone to her.  She felt down in a pouch at
her side, her fingers rubbing over the ring that the false he had tried to
hand to her.  She had refused it then.  She did not want it now.  This
imposter, althought the reincarnation of her life mate, did not know her. 
He did not know what she was, nor what she had been through.  All the
knowledge of this imposter did was to make her angry.  

She shook her head, trying to clear her memories and her head.  She had more
important things to do.  She had asked the Highlord for someone to undertake
her instruction, only to be met with the warning to not overtax them so that
they could not perform their assigned tasks.  She snorted derisively, her
eyes flickering to ruby red.  

She closed the spellbook, setting it on a nearby table.  She rummaged
through a bag at her waist, pulling from it a large red ruby.  She laid it
on the table in front of her, pushing her spellbook aside.  She leaned down,
looking directly at the ruby, the images within it showing her the glory
that had once been the Knights of Takhisis.  Her mind wondered, thinking to
what the knighthood had now become.  Loss of true leadership, followed by
false voices pretending to speak for the Queen, followed by another leader
that had vanished.  And now, her own mentor had left the falsity of these
followers to become something else.  Yet he told her nothing.  Nothing
because she had been sent on a fool's mission by the minotaur.  

She picked up the ruby, placing it back into the pouch.  She stood up,
retrieving her spellbook.  She walked out of the quiet room, casting a spell
before her to move her to another place.  She stepped through and found
herself in the familiar temple of Takhisis.  "One day, all will be memories.
Nothing will remain."  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed Jul 25 22:03:32 2007
Subject     Something to do

She stared at the dust that covered the grey cloak that she wore over her
clothing.  Then to her hands she looked, the dust coated her fingers.  She
shook her hair, sending a cloud of dust billowing around her.  She turned
her head and looked to the wolf beside her.  Eshri too was covered with
whatever had been at the bottom of the chasm.  

She sighed, her voice sounding strangely wolfish.  An angry snarl, Arikaih
sat down on the ground and rummaged through a pouch.  From the pouch she
pulled out parchment and ink.  With grim and determined look on her face,
Arikaih carefully composed notes.  She whistled for Eshri's offspring and
gave them specific instructions.  The young wolves listened to her
directions then took off for their destinations.  Arikaih turned to Eshri. 
"This is what I need to do."  The golden wolf nodded in agreement, laying
down beside her companion to wait for whatever came.  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Tue Aug 21 12:17:43 2007
Subject     Lost

The pathway grew longer, denser with trees and foliage.  Arikaih shook
her head.  "Well," she said in a quiet voice.  "I have really done it this
time.  I honestly can saw that I don't know where I have brought myself to."

She continued walking, her steps followed by her wolf companion and the
remaining 2 puppies that called the wolf mother.  She sighed and sat down
near a large tree.  She looked accusingly at the golden wolf.  "Eshri, you
knew I would get myself lost down that pathway, didn't you?"  The wolf
seemed to growl softly, a sort of laugh from her as she laid down next to
the half-elf and lay her head down on Arikaih's knee.  The puppies followed
suit, surrounding the young woman.  

Arikaih shook her head.  "I don't know what I was thinking by trusting that
pure blood.  He is no better than my father.  The lies, the promises, the
disappointment, I should have expected every one of them.  He played off my
want to learn.  He is no better than the false voice, nor the ones who tried
to teach me after the minotaur bested me."  She turned her head toward the
sky.  "At least the minotaur was honest in his promise before he left.  He
said that he would place me with mages who could teach me.  Too bad he was
unable to stay to see what they 'tried' to teach me."  

The wolf growled softly, causing Arikaih to look back down at her.  "What
about Lord Saige?  He deserted me too, just as they all did.  I have not
heard word from any of the young I placed, not from Lord Saige, Kailith the
bastard, nor from Mrizen.  Perhaps this is the Dark One's way of saying
she's angry at me."  Arikaih shrugged her shoulders.  "She's angry at me, oh
well.  The problem is, I really don't care.  What can she do to me?  Send me
to the Abyss?"  Arikaih snorted.  "The Abyss would be a welcome change to
what I walk through here."  Arikaih started laughing, quieting down after a
bit.  "Would she send a loyal follower to the Abyss and allow another dark
god the chance of 'tempting' me.  She doesn't have that much meddle in the
ways of the mortals on the face of Krynn, Eshri."  

Arikaih stood up, wiping the tears of laughter from her eyes.  She turned
and walked back down the trail, stopping.  She turned her head back toward
the dark, dense foilage.  "You know.  There is always an ending to a trail."
She turned back around and continued into the darkness.  "I've been lost for
a long time now.  What does it matter that I can't be found?"  

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Mon Nov 12 10:21:33 2007
Subject     The way of the scout

Arikaih walked quietly into the center of the camp as the sun rose. 
Twenty-two of the twenty-four scouts stood there waiting.  As she walked
along in front of them, the final two scouts tried to sneak into the line. 
She allowed it, but kept note of their scent and their looks.   'Those two
will be the first ones to die.  I will not keep those who cannot show up
when they are required, 'she thought as she walked toward a spot near the
center of them.  

"I am Arikaih.  You have been given to me to train a scouts.  We leave now
for the forests."   She said slowly.  She turned and headed toward the edge
of the camp.  A hesitant moment passed, then, slowly, the scouts followed
her.  

The small group walked deeper into the forest.  As they reached a spring,
the bushes started moving.  A few of the scouts drew their weapons, drawing
an angry glare from Arikaih.  "The noises in the bushes have followed us
since we left the camp.  They are noises that you WILL grow used to.  These
noises will guard you and protect you."   She turned and let loose a loud
wolf's howl.  From the bushes, four wolves emerged, walking up to Arikaih. 
One of the two scouts who had arrived to the assembly late snorted, shaking
his head.  That was the last mistake he would make.  Arikaih lifted her
hand, whispering.  The man grabbed his throat, trying to remove an invisible
hand as it choked the life from him.  Moments later, he dropped to the
ground.  "Is there anyone else?"  {nShe asked, her eyes traveling over the
faces before her.  Seeing no resistance, she shook her head.  "I command the
WolfBound.  We are scouts.  You will train with us to learn how to do this
job in quiet.  It is up to me who will return to the camp to continue to
serve Lord Saige's Queen.  Your lives belong to me."   She turned and
continued into the forest, the wolves ranging out around her.  Slowly the
scouts from the camp followed her, some of them with curiousity, the rest of
them with fear ranging from mild to extreme showing plainly on their faces. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sat Nov 24 13:51:03 2007
Subject     Scout's Return

She sat quietly on the limb of a tree, watching the activity near her.
The final assignment of the scouts she had been training was for them to
find her. She watched with mild amusement as Eshri and the pups led the
scouts astray. She laughed to herself as Fron, another of the returning
WolfBound who had once been Bundesphar under the Knights of Takhisis, sent
forth her report of her misled scouts.

She stiffened as a group of two scouts neared her location. They had done as
she had asked and had taught. One followed the trail while the other
protected them. The tracker looked up the tree, peering into the coverage.
She bowed deeply as she saw Arikaih, pointing out the hiding place to the
other scout. This scout too bowed deeply. Arikaih slipped down the tree,
standing before them. "You are the only ones who have not been led astray by
the sounds that protected me. Use what I have taught you to return to Lord
Saige,"  she said quietly. She reached into her pocket and pulled a rolled
parchment, handing it to the tracker. "You will both have to do as His
Lordship's scouts until I can get the others ready."

She watched as the two scouts disappeared into the trees. When they were
gone, she whistled, imitating a bird. Moments later, Eshri appeared. Arikaih
turned to the golden wolf. "I have sent two ahead to Lord Saige. Let us
round up the failures and make sure that they are well prepared for their
next training. Arikaih and the wolf seemed to disappear into the forest. A
bit later, screams and yells came from all directions as the WolfBound and
the Companions rounded up the scouts and took them back to the camp. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sat Dec  1 12:14:56 2007
Subject     Missives and movement

Arikaih stood quietly hidden in the trees and foilage with Fron, her eyes
watching the progress of the scouts she trained as they struggled to find
the wolf that was their target. She shook her head, quietly whispering to
the woman at her side. "I see better progress, but not what I want to see.
They are becoming more aware, but I see that your own companion, Ice, walks
around and throws them off the main trail." Fron nods, a smirk on her face.
"We were trained differently, Commander. These 'humans' know little, but as
you say, they learn." A smile crossed Fron's face. "I remember your training
under Captain Dante. I was for certain that you would not survive that, but
look at what you have managed to become." Arikaih nodded, her mind quickly
and momentarily taking her back to the time she had spent when she had first
met Eshri and was slowly learning what she now knew.

Sound of movement from the trail behind her saw Arikaih turning to face the
oncoming footsteps with her hand on the dark obsidian dagger in a sheath at
her side. Instead of moving for attack, she stood still. A small bit of time
passed when one of the two scouts she had sent ahead to Lord Saige stepped
out of the bushes. The young man bowed deeply and was soon joined by the
young woman who was the other scout that she had sent ahead. Arikaih nodded,
returning their formal greetings. The young man pulled a rolled parchment
from a pouch at his side and held it out to her. She nodded, taking it from
him. She broke the familiar wax seal and skimmed the words on the page. She
rolled the parchment back up, turning to Fron. "I leave you in charge of
these scouts. I also will leave you part of the wolves. I have been asked to
return to Lord Saige." Fron nodded, a smile on her face. "The Queen of the
World calls to her those who ARE truely her minions. We have Lord Saige. He
is truely Her Representative here on Krynn....better than others." Arikaih
shrugged her shoulders slightly. "I still have yet to know of the one you
speak. I follow the orders of the one I trust. There are none others who
have my loyalty." Fron nods again. "One day, Commander, you will learn more
about HER. Those who were charged with your first knowledge of HER were lax
in their teachings. Mark my words, one day SHE will make herself know to you
and you will understand." Arikaih nods once, turning her head. Taking in a
deep breath, she tilted her head back and released a howl. Moments later,
wolves seemed to appear, walking to her side. She knelt beside them,
exchanging growls and motions. Three slightly small wolves walked to Fron's
side, sitting on their haunches beside her. The large golden wolf called
Eshri turned to the two scouts nearby and growled. The scouts bowed deeply
to the wolf, setting the wolf to ease. A smaller white wolf and a brownish
colored wolf remained at Eshri's side. "Train them to do what is needed.
Lord Saige passed on the orders to me. I now pass them to you. They must be
ready. Do what you MUST. If they are not capable of doing what he needs,
kill them." Fron nodded, her eyes seeming to glow. "They will be ready. But
not all of them will make it back." 

Arikaih nodded, turning to the scouts at her side. "Come, we return to Lord
Saige." 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed Jan 30 03:38:35 2008
Subject     [FWD] Seeking guidance

[FWD Note] - [ 52] Arikaih: Seeking guidance
[FWD Date] - Fri Jan 25 10:41:41 2008
[FWD To  ] - all [Original to:] dragonarmy
[FWD List] - story


Arikaih stalked away from the bloody mess she had left on the training
field by beheading the former Field Commander. Behind her she heard the
footsteps of the scouts that seemed intent on following her every wish and
command. She stopped, turning to them. "Find the rest of the scouts and
integrate them into the troops. You are the leaders of the scouts. Keep them
on their toes and make sure that they do NOT get sloppy and lazy,"  she
said, the same hint of anger and malice lightly hinting in her words. Sciath
and Teryn nodded, bowing deeply as they backed away from the young mage. 

Arikaih turned, continuing her stalking. Not knowing where she walked, she
suddenly stopped, realizing her feet carried her back toward Sanction. She
shook her head. "There is no reason for me to return to that city. There is
nothing that binds me there,"  she thought, shaking her head. "Perhaps it is
information you seek, information denied to you by those who filled your
head with nonsense and kept you from your rightful place, my child," 
whispered a dark voice deep inside her head. Arikaih turned, her hand
gripping her dagger tightly. Seeing no one, she shook her head. "You can't
get rid of me that simply, child. Have you question, seek you an answer," 
the voice continued, causing heat and pain to throb from the fresh wounds on
her chest and stomach. Arikaih gasped, clutching the area, falling to her
knees. 

Slowly the pain subsided. Arikaih slowly stood up, careful not to cause more
damage. Again, she shook her head. 

After standing for a bit, her mind turning over thoughts, she whistled
shrilly. Almost immediately, two wolves seemed to appear before her. She
knelt slowly. "Return to Fron and tell her that I return to Sanction. I must
speak with Lord Saige,"  she growled quietly to the younger of the two
wolves that answered her whistle. The wolf turned and disappeared into the
nearby trees. Arikaih then turned her attention to the golden wolf who
remained at her side. "Eshri, we must return to Lord Saige. I must speak
with him. There is much I do not know,"  she growled. The wolf seemed to
nod.

Arikaih stood up slowly, pulling a stone from a little used pouch at her
side. She held the stone, her voice speaking little used words, causing the
formation of a shimmering hole before her. She shook her head, stepping
closer to the gate. She slowly took a deep breath and nodded to the wolf
beside her. Together they took a step into the gate.

Stepping directly in front of the guards at the gate of Sanction. Arikaih
gave a huge sigh of relief. The wolf at her side growled. Arikaih looked
down. "Honestly Eshri, I didn't know if that spell would work or not. That
is the first time I have ever used it,"  she growled, a bit more relaxed. 

Arikaih turned her attention to the guards at the gate. She walked forward,
her head held high. The guards saluted her as she passed. She gave the
briefest nod to them.

Her feet carried her to the pathways leading to where she would find Lord
Saige. She nodded to Eshri. "Seek him out. Let him know that I have been
injured and must speak with him about these injuries,"  she growled, sending
Eshri to deliver her message. She sat down on the ground, putting herself on
guard against any and all who might cause her harm. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Jan 31 04:52:55 2008
Subject     Returning

The portal opened, swirling near two scouts. Arikaih stepped out of the
portal, Eshri at her side. Teryn and Sciath, the first two scouts that
Arikaih had trained, startled in the disturbance. Arikaih glared at them. "I
could have been someone else. NEVER let your guard down," she snarled,
scanning the area. Not seeing what she looked for, she turned toward the
scouts, anger showing in her face. "Where is Fron? I sent her a message to
assist you both and to keep an eye on Field Commander Jonis," Arikaih
snapped. Teryn bowed deeply. "I have not seen her since you ordered us to
leave, Lieutenant. We returned here as you commanded and set the scouts on
missions to further their skills," the young scout replied. Arikaih nodded.
"Find her," Arikaih growled, lifting her head and throwing a howl into the
air.

Moments later, the children of Eshri came into view. Arikaih growled toward
the puppies. They growled, setting off on the mission she set for them.

Arikaih turned and headed toward the field where her chosen Field Commander
Jonas worked at training the troops he now oversaw. He heard a noise nearby,
turning. When he saw Arikaih, he practically fell over himself bowing and
saluting. Arikaih smirked, stopping close to the man. "Were Lord Saige to
arrive for a search, you would be killed,"  she said, her eyes beginning to
glow red. She turned, looking at the troops practicing. She watched for a
bit, her eyes taking in the works. She turned her attention to the Field
Commander. "Get them prepared. If they do NOT perform up to my expectations
soon, you will NOT live to remedy your mistake," she said, turning and
walking away from the startled Field Commander who turned and started
bellowing orders to the troops below. 

Arikaih walked slowly to the woods nearby. Her wolf-mate, Eshri, sat quietly
on her haunches. Arikaih slowly sat down beside the wolf. She turned her
attention to her friend, growling softly to the wolf. The wolf answered,
whinning softly. Arikaih shook her head, whinning back. The wolf growled,
pushing her nose into the wound on Arikaih's stomach. Arikaih gently shoved
her away, growling. 

A rustling nearby sent the wolf to her feet in front of Arikaih, growling in
protection. Arikaih moved quickly, hiding the wound. She drew her dagger,
waiting. Sciath slipped through the trees, her own weapon drawn. Sciath
bowed deeply. "There is no sign of Fron, Lieutenant,"  she said. Arikaih
nodded. "Then lets do this my way,"  she said turning to Eshri. She looked
at the wolf, growling. She turned to Sciath. "Assemble the scouts,"  she
growled. Sciath nodded, turning and heading to where the scouts gathered. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Jan 31 05:26:24 2008
Subject     Seeing is believing

Arikaih followed Eshri, her dagger lightly gripped in her hand. She
glanced around, watching for sign of movement. From up ahead, she caught a
glimpse of what she was looking for.

She growled quietly to Eshri, sending the wolf to intercept the others and
to keep them back. She stood quietly and listened to what was happening in
front of her. And the more she listened, the angrier her glare became. After
a bit, she turned and walked from the area. "Deceit is more the work of the
followers of Hiddukel, Fron, not those pledged to do the work of Takhisis," 
she said, pitching her voice to carry to where Fron stood over a pit of
fire. 

Arikaih slipped as she walked, ignoring the pain that radiated from her
stomach area. She sighed in relief when she saw the scouts and Eshri. She
walked directly to them, nodding. "Fron is just ahead. She should join us
soon. When she does, send her to Sanction to get more training as a cleric.
She is not to destroy the safety of these troops in ANY way,"  Arikaih said,
turning and walking away, leaving questions in the eyes of all standing
around. 

Climbing a hill, Arikaih stood, watching her troops. She glared as one group
of troops made a mistake, but smiled a bit as her chosen Field Commander
bellowed orders to fix the problem and punish the idiot that caused it. 

Movement to her side caused her to turn her head. Sciath and Teryn
approached, bowing. "She has been escorted to Sanction,"  Teryn said
quietly. Arikaih nodded, returning her gaze to the troops nearby. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed Feb 20 02:51:53 2008
Subject     Supply lines

Sets of eyes peered out of the heavy brush, watching the barbarians gloat
over the supplies they had stolen from the Armies of the Queen. No movement
stirred from the bodies owning the eyes, but each being was tense and ready,
waiting for the small signal from the leader of this group.

A lone young wolf walked quietly toward the brush, listening for a certain
sound. When it heard the sound it waited for, it entered the brush, stopping
in front of a hooded figure. It quietly growled its report. The figure
nodded, returning the growl. The figure slowly stood up, pushing the hood
back from its head. Beside the figure, two other humanoids also stood up,
flanking the first human. 

The first human, turned to the rest of the eyes, motioning with a hand. The
rest of the eyes stood, numbering 12 humans and 4 wolves. With a single hand
motion, the group started moving out. One part of the group headed toward
the out lying people, dispatching them with quiet ease. More of the group
started dispatching more of the barbarians. The last group, consisting of
the first person, the ones standing at the flank, and a golden wolf. They
started forward, taking out more of the barbarians.

After a bit, the group returned moved to a bonfire in the center of the
barbarian camp. All the people and wolves stood around quietly, waiting for
the final group to make it to the bonfire. The central figure nodded. "That
is what what we need to do to each and every supply line. Highlord Saige
needs the supplies for the Armies," Arikaih said quietly, her red-tinted
eyes moving over each member of her scouting party. "This MUST be stopped."


She turned and walked back to the brush, the troops following her. She
abruptly stopped and turned to a few members of her scouting party. "Go back
to the main body of troops and bring them here. They will take these
supplies to Highlord Saige. Once that is done, you and the troops with
return to me," she said to the scouts. The scouts bowed and took off to find
the troops.

"You have done what you have set out to do, Lieutenant Arikaih," one of the
scouts flanking her said. Arikaih turned to the scout. "Done what? I am only
doing what no one else has set out to do," she said, her eyes narrowing as
she looked at the supplies. The scouts stood nearby, quietly shaking their
head as Arikaih turned back and walked to the supplies. She picked up an
empty supply pack, throwing it into the bonfire with renewed anger. The
scouts watched. One turned to the other. "She is not taking this well, is
she Sciath?" he asked. The other scout shook her head. "Fron did something
that should have never been done. From what I understood, the Lieutenant was
devistated when her lifemate died. The shell returned, but was not the same.
Fron knew that, but kept pushing. The issue should have been dropped long
ago. From what I'm seeing, Fron got exactly what she deserved," Sciath said,
her eyes never leaving Arikaih. Teryn nodded, returning his gaze to
Arikaih.

He took the move first, walking to Arikaih. He bowed deeply to her. "What
would you have me do, Lieutenant?" he asked. She turned toward him, glaring
at him. He nodded, reaching over and picking up an empty supply package. He
handed it to her. She yanked it out of his hand and chucked it into the
bonfire. "I need no help from anyone. Do what you are ordered to," she
growled at him, stalking into the underbrush. Teryn walked back to Sciath.
"I tried," he said. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed Feb 20 12:41:00 2008
Subject     Returning the supplies

Arikaih stood on the top of a small hill, watching her troops, under the
command of her chosen field commander. The troops packed up the supplies.
Behind her stood her trusted scouts, Teryn and Sciath. Without saying a
word, Arikaih knew they were there. The golden wolf at her side told her so.
Arikaih looked down at her bondmate and nodded. The golden wolf stood up and
loped down toward the troops. Arikaih turned toward the scouts at her back.
"They will finish soon and take the needed supplies back to Lord Saige. We
must find the next barbarian camp,"  she said, her red tinged eyes flashing
angrily. "Send out the more knowledgeable of the scouts and have them find
the next encampment,"  she said, turning back toward the troops. She
listened as one of the two scouts bowed to her, then moved down the back of
the hill. She turned back around to see Sciath standing nearby. Sciath
raised one hand, palm forward toward Arikaih. "Forgive my forwardness,
Lieutenant, but you seem troubled. If you need to speak with anyone, I am
here,"  the young woman said quietly, lowering her hand. Arikaih growled at
the woman. "I need nothing from anyone. I gave my trust a few times, for
naught. Unless you can tell me what the Queen plans for me. Not even the
cleric that was assigned to the troops can heal this wound She gave to me," 
Arikaih growled, her voice becoming more harsh and anger filled. Sciath
nodded her head. "Perhaps I could try something my parents did when I was
injured,"  the young woman offered. Arikaih sighed and nodded, lifting the
hem of the shirt she wore. Sciath stepped forward and looked at the wound on
her commanding officer's stomach. She stepped back and nodded. "I shall
return with what I need, by your leave,"  she said, bowing deeply. Arikaih
nodded, turning back to watch the movement of her troops. 

Teryn watched the hill from his post with the troops. He smiled as his
companion scout, Sciath, spoke with the Lieutenant then left. He turned back
to the field commander, issueing his commands. Teryn allowed a smile to play
on his face as the commands were carried out. He glanced toward the hill,
smiling as he saw Arikaih nod her approval in his direction. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sun Feb 24 22:51:07 2008
Subject     Movement and travels

The mountains seemed to loom in the distance, desert and oasis around.
Troops marked with the Green of the DragonArmies moved as a cohesive unit, a
trio of people standing nearby and watching.

Arikaih watched as the assigned troops marched their pathway toward their
destination. Arikaih turned to the scouts at her sides, speaking with them
in quiet tones. The scouts, one male and one female, spoke to her with
respect and truth. At times she would not, other times she would glare at
the troops below. 

Another scout approached from the direction the troops were traveling. He
stepped before Arikaih. "Lieutenant, we have them. They are 1/2 day march in
the current direction,"  he said, bowing. She nodded. "Find them, watch
them. When I return from Alek-khan, we will finish this and find HighLord
Saige," she said with a nod. The scout nodded, heading toward the troops. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Tue Feb 26 14:52:47 2008
Subject     Healers of Alek-khan

Arikaih walked quietly into Alek-khan, a dirty cloak pulled around her.
Still weary of many people, she seemed to avoid them when she could.

Flanking her, but far enough back to leave her "alone" walked the scouts she
had trained, Sciath and Teryn. Their duty to her, in their mind, was to keep
an eye on her. 

Arikaih turned her head slightly, catching a glimpse of the scouts. She
stopped, growling deeply in her throat. The scouts froze, hearing the
warning in her voice. They looked at each other, then turned and walked
briskly from the city. 

Arikaih turned her head again, nodding at not seeing the scouts around her.
She sighed and continued on her walk.

She carefully walked the street, looking for something that would be useful
to her. She stopped in front of a small shop near the center of the city.
Taking a deep breath, she entered the shop. 

Inside the shop, a man stood dressed in robes of suet black. He looked up at
Arikaih and nodded, his eyes taking in her clothing. "What you want?" he
asked. "Cleric of the Queen?" she asked, her eyes glaring at him. He
returned her glare, not backing down. "It depends on who's asking for what
reason?" he said, his hand slowly moving toward something under the
counter.

Arikaih watched his movements with a careful eye. "Would it help to know
that I am a Lieutenant under the command of HighLord Saige?" she said, her
own hand moving slowly out of the dirty robe.

The cleric lifted his hand to the top of the counter. He smirked. "What
proof do you have of this?" he said, looking at her. She opened her cloak,
showing her hands to the cleric. "Do I need to show you?" she asked, her
hands starting to glow red. The cleric nodded, smiling. "Now I truely see
who you are, Lieutenant Arikaih. What can a humble cleric of Our Queen do
for you?" he asked, giving a slight bow to her.

Arikaih slowly lifted the hem of her shirt to reveal the bottom curve of the
bloody crescent carved into her stomach. The cleric nodded. "You have been
marked by the hand of Takhisis. She sent you a message, Lieutenant?" the
cleric asked. Arikaih nodded. "Her message was sent, and received very
plainly. However, I can't perform the duties set upon me by Her loyal
HighLord with such a wound that never heals. The clerics assigned to my
troops are unable to do anything to staunch the flow of blood and this has
caused me to collapse in following my given orders," she said, pulling her
shirt back down. The cleric smiled. "And you wish me to commune with Her to
help you?" he asked, walking around the counter to face her. With nothing
left to say, Arikaih simply nodded, pulling the cloak around her once
again.

The man nodded, his hand pointing toward a back area. She nodded, walking in
front of him. 

She stepped into the back room and her eyes were met with familiar signs of
Takhisis. Symbolic items of the cleric's worship of Takhisis lay everywhere.
She looked around, stepping forward slightly to allow the cleric to join
her. He stepped around her, motioning for her to follow him. With a quick
look around, she did.

He led her to the corner of the room. He waved his hand and steps leading
downward appeared. "Go below, I'll be with you in a moment,"  he said,
looking back toward the front of the shop.

She walked down the steps, into complete darkness. She growled, scenting the
air. She whispered uninteligable words, causing her eyes to cover with a
hazy red film. Her eyes tingled for a few moments, gradually becoming clear
in their sight. 

The cleric walked down the steps. He muttered a couple of words, causing dim
lights to light the area. Arikaih stood in the center of the room, near a
red gem. "I have seen these before. What are they cleric?" she asked, her
head turning towards him. The cleric shrugged his shoulders. "I have yet to
figure that out, Lieutenant. All I know is that they enhance what I am able
to do,"  he said, stepping around her. He motioned for her to join him in a
room farther from the gem. She took one last look at the gem and followed
him. 

They entered a small room. He motioned to a table in the center of the room.
"Disrobe as proper as you see fit and lay on the table I will do what I can
to heal your wounds,"  the cleric said, turning his back to her. Arikaih
sighed, dropping the cloak to the floor. She pulled her shirt off, dropping
it on top of her cloak. She lay on the table, her arms crossed over her
chest.

The cleric twisted his arm back, holding a blanket. Arikaih saw it and
pulled it from his grasp. She covered herself, looking away from the
cleric.

The cleric turned back around, his hands toward Arikaih. She sighed and
closed her eyes as he gently touched the bottom curve of the crescent on her
stomach. "Her agent did a number on this wound, Lieutenant. I will do my
best,"  he said, beginning his whispering.

Pain coursed through her body, causing her to bite down on her lower lip.
Arikaih fought to hold her body still under the ministrations of the cleric.
She opened her eyes, forcing herself to look directly at the cleric. He
looked at her, returning her red tinged gaze with his own gaze, his eyes
tinted red also. He laid her hands on her stomach. Again the pain was
excrutiating, causing her to black out. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Wed Feb 27 12:36:13 2008
Subject     Was it all a dream?

A breeze seemed to flutter through the room, hitting Arikaih and waking
her. She slowly opened her eyes, looking around her. She lay on the only
furniture in a falling down building.

She jerked to her feet, aware that her stomach and chest no longer pained
her. Her eyes quickly scanned the area around her, seeing only a pack on the
ground near where she had dropped her own dusty cloak and bloody shirt. 

She looked down, realizing for the first time that her shirt was back on.
She slowly and carefully lifted the hem on the shirt, seeing the curving
crescent of a newly healed scar. She gently touched the new skin around the
wound and felt a twinge of pain, nothing more.

Her curiousity led her to the pouch. She lifted it and set it on the table
she had woken up on. Opening it, she noticed dark cloth in the bag.
Wondering, she pulled it all out.

At the bottom of all the cloth in the bag was a folded note. She picked it
up and carefully opened it.

**

I have done my duty to Our Queen. It is now time that you take your place as
Her loyal follower. Shed that which you knew and start fresh. She has seen
fit to spare your life this time, but WILL NOT be so lenient the next.

** 

Shocked by the wording of the note, Arikaih lifted the cloth and set it out.
She stared at the cloth for many minutes, contemplating the meaning of it,
then nodded. "Thy orders obeyed, My Queen,"  she said quietly as she slowly
removed the clothing she wore and replaced it with the cloth in the bag. 

Finished dressing, Arikaih looked around her at what she could see of her
new look. She felt a bit conscious of herself, but made the decision to drop
the uncertainty.

She stepped out of the collapsing building, meeting the rising of the sun.
She smiled, looking upward and seeing the familiar sight of the Queen's
likeness in the sky. She placed her fist over her heart and, with her head
raised, walked from Alek-khan to return to her troops. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Feb 28 18:05:18 2008
Subject     Supplies to the masses

Arikaih walked out of Alek-khan, a cloak thrown haphazardly over her
shoulders. She casually laid a hand at sheath of the dagger at her waist.

Her footsteps soon carried her to the outskirts of troops of the Green
Dragonarmies, under the command of her field commander. She walked into the
center of the troops before anyone realized she was there. The anger on her
face was apparent as she sought out the commander. He never got a chance to
turn to salute her as she plunged her dagger into his spine at the base of
his neck. He crumpled to the ground, sightless eyes staring at her. She
knelt and pulled the dagger from the corpse. 

Standing, she turned to the first soldier. "You are now field commander," 
she snarled at the young female soldier. "Don't disappoint me. You see what
happens,"  she said, spinning on her heal and walking away from the corpse.

Sciath approached her, bowing deeply. Arikaih glared at the female scout.
"Find the scouts and get them on the perimeter, NOW,"  she growled deeply.
Sciath bowed, backing away, sending a whistle into the air to call the
scouts to her. 

Still angry, Arikaih stalked to a nearby tent, sending the occupants out.
She shouted orders to the nearby soldiers, sending them every which way.
After nearly an hour of angry shouting, Arikaih called the new field
commander to her. The woman entered the tent, knowing full well that her
life could be forfeit.

While the situation in the camp was hectic, the scouts hustled to secure a
perimeter around the camp. Teryn and Sciath, the lead scouts, met each other
briefly. "That's new from her,"  Teryn said, casually. Sciath nodded.
"Something has happened to cause this sudden change. Right now, we do what
we must. She will soon call for us and we MUST be ready for anything,"  she
said, moving away. Teryn nodded, looking back toward the camp center. He
shook his head and continued his duties. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Tue Mar  4 11:49:11 2008
Subject     Taking over the barbarian camp

Tugging at the clothing she now wore, Arikaih watched the barbarian camp
with hooded curiousity. On her right side stood the newly appointed field
commander, Andra. Andra watched over Arikaih's shoulder, determined not to
follow in the footsteps of the former commanders. She whispered questions to
the young mage, which were answered in hushed tones. The scouts stood
nearby, listening closely.

After a while, Arikaih called the scouts to her, issuing orders for claiming
the camp. The scouts bowed deeply, backing away. She then turned to Andra.
"It's time." she said with a nod.

The camp knew little as to the situation as the troops under the command of
Arikaih swept down upon them, this time, with Arikaih in the middle of the
fray.

As the fight began to subside, the troops of the DragonArmies stood a bit
taller, seeing their Lieutenant among them. Some of the troops cheered as
Arikaih raised her hand, calling for the appointed commanders in the armies
to her side. She spoke briefly with them, her eyes flashing amber and red
tint. After she finished talking to the commanders, they bowed deeply,
heading back to their individual assignments. Those assignments were carried
out swiftly, bring order to the camp.

She walked through the center of the camp, flanked by the field commander.
She entered a large tent, looking around. She smiled slightly, seeing the
supplies that had not made it to Sanction. She nodded to Andra. "Gather the
wagons we hid in the woods. Load these supplies. We travel to meet up with
Highlord Saige,"  she said, turning her back to the woman. Arikaih did not
see the bow, but heard the woman move out of the tent.

Arikaih stepped out of the tent, nodding to Sciath and Teryn. "Do we have
captives? " she asked. The scouts nodded. Arikaih smiled, an evil gleam in
her eyes. She again nodded, resuming her walking excursion of the camp. 
 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sun Mar  9 14:43:43 2008
Subject     Remnants of the past

Arikaih stepped into the beginnings of her troops camp, the scouts ranged
out behind her. Amongst the 10 remaining members of the scouts, they carried
8 large deer. She nodded to Teryn and Sciath, and headed toward a tent
toward the center of the camp.

Alone, she entered the tent. She looked around, shaking her head. 'It
reminds me of the time that I woke up the scouts of Lord Saige's camp, ' she
thought, smiling at the memories of the reactions of the so-called scouts. 

She stepped to the desk in the center of the tent and removed the belt at
her waist, dropping it on the scarred top of the desk. She moved across the
tent, pulling back a division to reveal another small room. A large backpack
lay on the hastily erected cot. She upended the backpack, tossing clean
clothing onto the bed. Quickly she used a nearby pitcher of water and the
shirt she was wearing to take an impromptu bath.

That finished, she stepped out of the small room, closing the curtain again.
Her belt and the pouches had been pushed aside, a steaming bowl of soup
placed in the center of the desk. Arikaih grumbled angrily, seeing the
pouches on the belt, their contents scattered around.

She hastily started to return things to the pouches. She picked up the red
crystals she had found in the cave, looking at them with hidden curiousity.
Without a second thought, she returned them to the pouch.

A shimmer of blue caught her attention. She picked it up, looking at it with
amazement. She turned the strange sapphire over in her hands. "Is it
possible that he still exists?" she asked, looking into the sapphire. "He
probably lied to me, just like the others,"  she pondered. Shaking her head,
she closed her eyes. "Will you still answer me after all this time?" she
asked, remembering what he had looked like.

Sighing, she opened her eyes and shoved the newly re-colored sapphire back
into a pouch. She closed the pouches and gently set the belt on the ground,
returning to the present, leaving the past behind her. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Mon Mar 17 22:19:43 2008
Subject     Movement and discipline

Shouts filled the air, commands coming from voices new to their role. A
young man, whiskers still new to his face, stood with grizzled med whose
faces showed the battles they had been in. The young man would turn to an
older man, speaking quietly to him. The older man would, in return, speak to
the young man. This finished the young man would lift his voice to the air,
giving orders to the surrounding troops.

A lone figure stood atop a nearby hill, watching. To anyone watching from
afar, it would have seemed as through the figure were spying on the
activity. However, this was a misleading train of thought. Upon closer view,
the figure seemed to radiate anger. She stood as still as a statue, just
watching.

Scouts returned to the camp area, their spirits low after witnessing one of
their own beaten for failing in her orders. Teryn, the other lead scout,
seemed dazed as he walked, stubbing his toe occasionally. He caught himself,
glancing around. He looked up, catching Arikaih's glare on him. She made a
sharp gesture at him, calling him to her. He bowed slightly, altering his
course to climb the hill to her. He bowed deeply to her, straightening
himself to a stiff attention, his eyes focused behind her. 

Arikaih looked at the scout before her, her red tinted eyes seeming to
simmer in anger. After a bit, she turned her attention back to the activity
below.

"Have you problems, scout?" she asked, her voice tinged with malice. Teryn
dropped his gaze to her face. He watched her for a moment, gathering courage
for his next action. "Premission to speak freely, Lieutenant?" he asked, his
voice faltering a bit. Arikaih looked at his and nodded, her eyes not
leaving him. "I disagree with what has been done, Lieutenant," he said,
again keeping an eye on Arikaih. "How so?" came the snarled reply. Teryn
sighed inwardly, continuing. "Lord Saige would have been well aware of any
scouts assigned to watch him. Sciath did as she was ordered. There was no
call for the punishment given to her," he said, diverting his gaze from
Arikaih. 

Arikaih snorted, stepping closer to Teryn. "She was seen, scout. She was not
the only one ordered to keep eyes on the Highlord's party. The others
reported back and were never seen. Sciath got sloppy," Arikaih said, turning
her gaze to the troops. Teryn swallowed hard, pushing his fear away. "What
about the Field Commander you seemed smitten with, scout?" Arikaih asked,
contempt flowing throughout the question. Teryn looked at Arikaih, his fear
coming forth. Arikaih walked past him, her back to him.

He turned his head to look at her. A growl nearby caused him to snap his
head back around to attention. The golden wolf bound to Arikaih walked up
the hill, sitting in front of Teryn. "Answer the question, scout," he heard
from behind him. The golden wolf growled, emphasizing the command. He
sighed. "Her death, to me, is a great loss. It, however, was her fault that
she died, this I cannot find fault," he said, clearing all emotion from his
face. 

Arikaih turned to face the back of the scout. She watched his body language
as he spoke of the death of the female field commander. Silently she moved
behind him. 

Teryn tensed as Arikaih's hands closed around his neck. He struggled to
catch his breath as she tightened her grip. Then, without warning, she
released her grip. He dropped to his knees, gasping for air.

Arikaih knelt beside Teryn. "Never forget this lesson, scout. Return to the
others and tell them to make ready to move," she hissed, turning and walking
down the hill, the wolf following. 

Arikaih shook her head as she walked down the hill. Eshri growled softly to
her. Arikaih turned, stopping to look at her companion. She knelt beside the
wolf, speaking to the companion in soft growls. After a while, Arikaih stood
and continued toward the troops. Eshri remained where she was for a bit,
then raised her muzzle, releasing a howl into the air. Arikaih continued
walking, ignoring the haunting accusation that followed her.

She walked to the newest field commander, glaring at the veteran soldiers
that surrounded him. The soldiers backed away, leaving the field commander
to face their Lieutenant, his knees trembling as he moved to stand at a
rigid attention. Arikaih watched him, her red eyes seeming to show a hint of
laughter.

Finally, she turned, looking to the east. "Move the troops slowly eastward.
Make it a leisurely movement, allowing anyone in the area to see us. I will
leave scouts with you for messages to be passed," she said, turning her head
slightly. "Don't follow in the footsteps of your predecessors," she growled,
watching the young man's face drain of color as her words sank in. She
turned abruptly on her heel and headed east, away from the center of
activity. 

She stopped a ways from the camp, reaching into the pouch at her side.
Smiling, she pulled out the glowing sapphire. "What would you teach me, pure
blood?" she asked in a snarl. She shoved the sapphire back into her pouch.
She waited a few moments, the released a shrill whistle into the air,
calling the scouts and WolfBound to her side.

She watched as all of them approached. She looked over the 10 humanoid
scouts and 7 wolves, her brows narrowing as her gaze passed over Teryn and
Sciath. Her face returned to a stony faade as she turned slightly. "We head
east by the orders of the Highlord. Part will move forward, seeing what's
ahead. Others will remain with the camp, and forward messages. The rest will
remain one day behind and guard the rear," she said, looking over the group.
"Two will travel with me, being my eyes and ears." The group looked toward
Teryn and Sciath, as though guessing the choices. However, Arikaih stepped
forward, laying her hands on the shoulders of two other scouts. "You will
remain at my side," she said, surprising the entire group. 

She gave the assignments to all the scouts, separating Sciath and Teryn.
This finished, she and the lead group headed out, moving to the east. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Sat Mar 22 01:45:32 2008
Subject     Back to nature

Still shifted in her shape, Arikaih loped along, the path she traveled
taking her back to where the scouts waited. She stopped a few yards from the
camp, resuming her elven form. She turned, looking behind her for Eshri. Not
seeing her companion, she shook her head and looked ahead.

She moved forward quietly, looking for the sentry scouts she had assigned.
She saw the first one, the scout's weapon in hand. Arikaih smiled, stepping
into the open. The scout bowed deeply, moving out of Arikaih's way. Arikaih
nodded as she walked past the scout.

Before her loomed the opening of a cave. She entered the cave, nodding to
the remainder of the scouts and wolves assembled there. 

Sitting down near the fire in the center of the cave, she opened the pouch,
pulling out the strange blue sapphire. She held is gently in her hands,
sending her thoughts toward it. 'Do you still walk among the living, or does
another hold the mate to this stone?' she thought, her curiousity pushing
toward the stone and the being in possession of the other sapphire. 'Do you
still offer what you once did?' she thought, cautious of her thoughts,
remembering her conversation with the HighLord.

Soon she tired of the conversation. She returned the sapphire to the pouch
and lay back, waiting for the start of the next day. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Apr  3 11:43:22 2008
Subject     News

Arikaih sat quietly in the cave, her eyes glaring at the red Wolfbound
puppy known as Tolinar. In return, the puppy kept his head low, as though a
child in trouble. She looked across the cave at the intruder she had taken
captive. She looked back at the puppy, growing at him. The puppy walked
slowly out of the cave, his head held low.

Movement outside brought one of the scouts. He entered, bowing deeply. "A
message from the Highlord," he said quietly, handing a rolled parchment to
her. She nodded, taking the roll. The scout bowed deeply, backing out of the
cave.

She opened the parchment, reading the words carefully. After reading the
message, she rose to her feet and stepped to the mouth of the cave. "Call
the scouts to me, we return to the Southern Troops," she said turning her
head toward the captive in the cave. "Make sure that he follows us closely.
If he tries anything, deal with it,"  she said, walking out of the cave. The
nearby scout bowed, then stood and entered the cave. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Apr 10 11:31:45 2008
Subject     Back to the Borders

Arikaih walked a steady pace, keeping her eyes trained on the
surroundings. Behind her ranged the scouts and her captive. She glared
around her, catching glimpse of the red WolfBound puppy. Narrowing her eyes,
she growled, sending the menacing warning to the puppy, who, upon hearing
it, tucked his tail between his legs and took off to do what he was assigned
to do.

She caught sight of the Border three days into her journey. Instead of
calling for a halt, she continued ahead, apparently eager to take command of
the troops stationed nearby.

Hours until the Border, sounds of battle caught her ears. She held up a
hand, halting the band of scouts. Whistling, she called the WolfBound to
her. Kneeling beside a large golden wolf, Arikaih spoke to the wolf in soft
growls. The wolf returned her growls, confirming her thoughts. She stood,
turning to the scouts behind her. "Prepare yourselves. Both Eshri and I hear
the sounds of battle ahead. It may be nothing but practice, but it may also
not be,"  she said, her voice quiet. She looked to the captive nearby,
shaking her head. "I have no time to watch over him. Untie him. Should he
fall in the skirmish, less for me to worry about,"  she said, her eyes
boring into the red WolfBound puppy. The puppy, again, bowed his head, but
defiantly walked to stand beside the young man. Arikaih shook her head and
continued on her way. 

The closer the scouts got to the Border, the louder and more agressive the
sounds of battle were. Arikaih frowned as she smelled the first scent of the
battle, the blood. She hastened her pace, moving more quickly toward what
lay ahead.

She entered a clearing near where the Border troops were to be stationed.
Here lay the skirmish. Barbarians clashed with the troops of the
Dragonarmies. Arikaih smiled slightly, drawing the weaponry from her waist.
She hissed through clenched teeth and the scouts ranged out, joining in the
battle with quiet stealth. 

Arikaih drew back her arm, and threw one of the daggers that she carried. It
hit a barbarian, causing him to turn around. He laughed a horrible sound as
he advanced on her.

He was a bit quicker than she as he unleashed his sword on her. The sword
bit into her left upper arm, creating a gouge in her shoulder. She dropped
the weapon in her left hand, yet remained quiet. She kicked up dirt from the
ground allowing the breeze to carry it into the barbarian's face. He backed
off, wiping at the dirt that entered his eyes. This gave Arikaih a few more
minutes. She stepped back, sheathed the weapon in her right hand, and
withdrew spell components from the pouch at her waist. She whispered,
releasing the spell at the exact moment. Takhisis seemed to be looking down,
guarding her path as lightning from the sky struck the barbarian, frying
him.

As their leader fell to the ground in a crispy shell, the barbarians slowly
began retreating into the surrounding area. This gave Arikaih the time to
survey the damage surrounding her. Bodies of both DragonArmies soldiers and
the Barbarians lay scattered around the area. She turned, looking for
someone in charge of the troops, then caught sight of familiar beings.
Sciath, Teryn, and Fron stood nearby, their eyes watching her. Arikaih
forced her face to become unreadable as she moved toward them. "A status
report,"  she ordered, her voice remaining impassive. 

Teryn nodded, standing taller and saluting her. "They caught us as we were
changing guard posts. There was little we could do except fend them off. The
clerics and magic users with us did give us a slight advantage, but their
numbers were greater than ours. The field commander did a good job keeping
everything together, but he was cut down near the middle stages of the
battle. Now, we rely on the veteran officers for commands,"  he said, his
expression hidden.

Arikaih nodded. She turned and headed toward a group of older men gathered
together. Teryn turned to Sciath and Fron. "Should we tell her, or wait?"
Fron shook her head. "It is my duty to tell her. I will do it when the time
is right." 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Mon May 12 03:21:18 2008
Subject      It is time...Part 4

A bright fire seemed to burn from within the safe confines of a cave set
in a mountain base. Various humanoid figures seemed to make their way in and
out of the cave with little effort. Higher on the mountain, a lone figure
stood, watching everything around. To the east of the mountain cave, in a
slight depression in the land, a ring of well-armed troops stood, ringing a
band of prisoners. To the west of the mountain cave, in another depression,
another ring of troops stood guard over supplies. 

A lone messenger approached the cave, handing something to a nearby guard.
This guard read through the missive. He nodded, handing the message back to
the messenger and motioning toward the figure standing watch.

The messenger trekked up the hill, stopping. He bowed formally, handing the
missive to the lone woman standing watch on the hill. The woman took the
missive, nodding at the messenger. She opened the notice, reading through it
thoroughly. When she finished, she turned back to the messenger. She nodded,
walking past him and toward the bonfire. "Gather the troops. We head toward
Kortal and the rest of the troops of the Highlord,"  she said, her voice
quiet but seeming to ring with authority. The troops near the bonfire bowed
deeply, turning and heading different directions. Almost immediately, word
started passing to ready themselves for the move.

Arikaih stood quietly, her back flanked by the bonfire as she watched the
troops ready for movement. Two figures moved quietly, bowing deeply before
her. She turned toward them, her expressions neutral. The figures bowed
deeply. "The scouts are ready to move forward, Major,"  the closest figure
said quietly. Arikaih looked toward the figure. She nodded, her expression
remaining impassive and stonelike. "Move the forward scouts out now, Teryn.
Sciath will lead the rear scouts when the troops move out,"  Arikaih said,
her voice ringing with the hint of mistrust and malice. The scout called
Teryn bowed deeply, turning and moving down the hill. The scout called
Sciath also bowed, yet remained, returning to a strict attention. Arikaih
looked at the woman, her eyes seeming to change color to reflect a more red
tint. "What is on your mind, scout?" she asked. The woman nodded, stepping
forward and whispering something to Arikaih.

Arikaih glared at the woman, then nodded.  "See to it. I want NO problems
from that one,"  she growled. The scout bowed deeply, this time turning and
heading down the mountain. 

Arikaih stood quietly on the mountain, watching the movement below her. She
took in all the movement around her, her eyes constantly moving. At a
beckoning motion from the field commander, she started down the
mountainside, coming to stand before the man. He bowed nervously. "All is in
readyness, Major. We await your command to move out,"  he said, his voice
cracking. Arikaih nodded. "Give the command,"  she said in a quiet voice,
walking away from the man. She let forth a shrill whistle. Movement from
nearby brought wolves to her side. She nodded toward the movement. Wolves
moved forward, with the exception of an older golden wolf. Arikaih looked
down, a smile crossing her face for a moment. She moved forward with the
troops, her eyes scanning the horizon. 

Author:    Arikaih        
Date:      Thu Jun 26 14:19:03 2008
Subject     Waiting, merely waiting

The darkness crept closer to the mouth of the cave near Kortal. Inside, a
troop of people, all wearing the marks of the DragonArmy, milled around.
They seemed to wait for something to happen, the boredom showing through
some of them who made the decision to try their skill at hand to hand
combat. Training exercises, they seemed to call them.

A select few people stood outside the cave, cloaked in the darkness. They
watched with curiousity as another person wandered the hill, looking around,
as though searching for something. Movement from around the figure caused
noone to jump or be scared. Wolves wandered around, strangely helping the
figure look for whatever it was that it wanted to find. 

With a grubby, dirty hand, the figure, a woman called Arikaih, stood up,
triumphant. "I have found another one of them," she said, a chipper laugh in
the voice. The figures with her came to her side, looking into the woman's
hand. A glowing red stone lay in the open palm of her hand. She picked it up
between her fingers, looking into it. 

Almost instantly, she was whisked into dreams. She walked in the dreams,
looking around. They were whispers of the past, she thought. 

She came back to the darkness, looking around her. 'Strange. They keep
coming, but none of them answer why,"  she thought. 

The Storytellers of Ansalon, The DragonLance MUD

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