In their room at the Onyx Vipers
Ariyra jumps onto the bed with a contented sigh. Humming, they begin to take off their day clothes. Most of the rest of their things had been brought up and put away earlier, and Guano was still roosting up in the corner. Once they are all set for sleep, they grab their staff, and tap the orb of water on top. An identical orb of water situated in the branches of Silopei’s tree alerted her to Ariyra’s call. While Ariyra waited for Silopei to get back to her tree, they collected their thoughts on the eventful day.
“Ariyra, my little Leafling, it is good to see your face.”
Hearing Silopei’s voice, Ariyra focuses on the orb, smiling when they see the beautiful fae. Ariyra takes a moment to admire their lover. Her eyes like the deep brown of fertile earth, skin as smooth yet firm as the wood underneath the bark, and hair that was a beautiful shade of green. “Silopei, you look stunning as always, but you won’t believe the day I just had.”
Tilting her head intrigued, she said “Please, do tell.”
“Right, well I hope you are comfortable, cause this might take a while.” Ariyra settles in to tell their tale. “I had rented a room at an inn called The Greystone keep and offered to heal the other guests to help pay for it. Only one person took me up on my offer, but when we got to his room, I was knocked unconscious.” Silopei looked worried, and seemed about to interrupt, “Hey, don’t worry Sil, I’m fine now as you can see. Besides, it gets worse before it gets better.”
Still looking troubled, she commented “Somehow that doesn’t fill me with confidence. Honestly, you need to learn to be less trusting when someone says they need help with an injury. But I suppose I’ll let you finish before I yell at you.”
“Yeah, yeah I know. But seriously, that wasn’t even the worst of it. Anyway, when I woke up, I was chained in a room with five other people. A human named Thia who is an asshole, but we’ll get to that, a cute humanoid fox named Reynard, a tiefling named Petros, a half-elf named Vindis, and a Genasi named Sabiya, though we didn’t actually learn those two’s names until we were being interrogated by the town guard. The chains must have been really weak or something though, cause everyone broke out of theirs without too much trouble. Once we got out of the dungeon room though, Thia tried to stab Reynard in the back and then ran through a wall.”
Silopei looked incredulous, “How does one run through a wall?”
“How should I know, plus we didn’t have any time to investigate since we were immediately attacked by … um, things. I’m not actually sure what they were, but we defeated them pretty quickly. Everyone was a little hurt so I made some berries. Petros almost refused them, but I talked him into eating them,” Silopei started giggling at that and Ariyra started blushing, “hey, what’re you laughing at?” She just shook her head and motioned for them to continue. “Hmph. Well after that, we got lost in some hallways and triggered a few traps. Eventually we made it to a strange room with no walls and five doors, none of which led back to where we had just come from. We learned later that this was the start of The Gauntlet, and was some sort of trial for the mad god Lyssa. Vindis went through his door first and got through with relative ease. I went next, and well, it wasn’t the most pleasant thing in the world. I was surrounded by a dead forest. As I moved forward, I wanted to try and fix even just some of it, but I had this vague feeling that if I stopped something bad would happen to me. I did make it out though, and Petros and Reynard made it through as well. But poor Sabiya, she was caught by the monster chasing her, and we weren’t sure if she was even still alive until she fell out looking exhausted and haggard. But I did get something for my troubles!” Jumping off their bed, Ariyra quickly grabs the staff they got at the end of their trial. “This staff has a permanent Shillelagh spell on it. I can’t wait to show Heinorin, and then I can rub it in his face. This’ll show him; telling me Druidcraft and mending are useless cantrips.”
“My little Leafling, stop pouting, it doesn’t suit you. Though I am glad I didn’t witness this dead forest you speak of. That sounds too horrible to imagine.” Taking a moment to gather herself, Silopei then asks “So how do the city guards come into this? It sounds like you got out without too much trouble.”
“Oh, we weren’t out yet. After we completed the last room we had to fight Thia. It was tough, and we won, but Reynard was hurt pretty badly. Good thing I was able to stabilize him. Once I did though, everyone was put to sleep, or well, everyone but Vindis. Apparently, some weird lady came and talked to him for a couple minutes. When they were done talking we were all somehow transported to the basement of the inn I was taken from. When we got upstairs, we were immediately taken in for questioning by the Guard Captain, Taras Rylen. It was for something along the lines of connections to cult activity. Honestly, all we had to do though was tell her who we are, where our current residence was, and for those of us who weren’t Asha citizens, what we were doing in the city. We got dismissed and all left to do our own things. I was finally able to follow that lead that got me in Asha in the first place. I asked around about Senf Volemin at the College of Asha. This cute Halfling girl named Lulabelle told me I would probably find him at the Onyx Vipers, one of the fighting guilds. When I got there I found out that he would be out of the city for a couple of days. Luckily, I met the most intriguing Tiefling woman named Nameia, who works for the Vipers. I guess she liked my sass, cause she convinced them to let me stay there in exchange for me helping and healing the more beat-up members. Heck, they even paid me.”
Once Ariyra got through explaining the fight with Thia, Silopei settled down, closing her eyes, now just enjoying the sound of their voice as much as she was paying attention to what they said. As they mentioned their meeting with Nameia though, she perked up. “I can understand where this Teifling is coming from,” suddenly gaining a sultry smile, she continued, “I am rather fond of that mouth of yours as well.” She immediately starts giggling as Ariyra’s face erupts in a blush.
“Sil, don’t joke like that, I’m sure she was just being friendly. Hmm, now that you mention it though, she was rather attractive. You know what; if she does start flirting with me, I’ll have you meet her one of these nights, see what you think of her. How’s that sound?”
“Lovely Ariyra, very lovely indeed.”After a few more minutes of discussion, Ariyra called it a night and set their staff aside, and had a relatively peaceful sleep.