Warcraft – Aeramin’s Notes

((I’m going to start using the title to tell what universe it is set in, since many of these characters appear in World of Warcraft and in Naren.))

  • We’re having an actual break in classes for the summer. Previous years, we’ve only had a week or two off. Still, I’ve been going and helping out around the school with stuff, which has mostly been Hethurin deciding he needs things moved. Books, desks, tables, chairs, are all going into one of the old practice rooms. He’s also cleaned out another room and put a desk and a chair in there and now he’s calling that my office. I was fine sharing one with Raleth, but I guess it is kind of nice to have my own. I can decorate it the way I want, and now Raleth can decorate his too.
  • I think the old practice room is being turned into a classroom which is good, and I hope I’ll be able to use it, but there’s a possibility that it could be for the general education classes. I suppose I should ask Hethurin. I thought he was going to have another classroom built on next to the room that’s already used for the younger students. There’s going to be a lot of new students coming in over the next few years. I know Raleth’s son is old enough, and Theronil’s son is too. I think Nessna’s son is also. It might be okay for this year, but the year after, there will be even more kids. He’s going to have to get them into a separate class so that they don’t slow down the older kids.
  • Anyway, so there’s that. Summer can be less work, but I would rather be teaching classes all day than pushing furniture around. I guess I technically don’t have to go to the school, but then what would I do all day? Also, most of the students stay there for the summer, and sometimes they come to ask me questions, so I need to be around a bit at least. That and I do like to talk to the two from Murder Row and make sure they’re both doing okay. I see Felarius often for his lessons, which we’ve decided to continue during the break, but I see Irael less. I will have to check in on her and make sure things are all good before I go on vacation.
  • Oh, yes, vacation. It’s been a while since Im and I have had a proper one. He’s sure he can get the time off, and I don’t think Hethurin will have a problem with it if I’m not pushing around furniture for a week.
  • We’ve decided to go to the Outland, mostly to the swamp, I think, and I’ve already started planning. Well I had ideas before this, but now I’m really planning. I think I’ve decided. I’m going to do it. I’m going to propose while we’re on holiday.
  • I already found the ring, and I’m having two made the engagement. One is in his size and one in mine. Coincidently, they are also from Outland. Petrified wood can be found in some places there, so I’m having the rings made out of that.
  • I need to talk to Vaildor about painting something too.
  • I’m really nervous about it. I’ve been engaged before, and obviously, none of them worked out. I want things to work with Im. I had a really good talk with him about what he wants and what I want and all that, and I think it went really well. I’m ready to try being engaged again, and I hope the wedding actually happens this time.

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Clip Clop

(( The prompt word was ‘clip’. I thought of many ways that clip could be used in a story, but in the end, I went with this one.))

*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*

Malwen could hear a horse crossing the small bridge over the stream a small ways from where she sat waiting next to the road. Her tiny hand picked up the blanket she had been sitting on and she moved back around one of the bushes that lined the path.

Never go to the road. Stig’s words echoed in her mind. She had heard them enough, that was for sure. There are people who wish to harm you and to take you away from Oma and me. Malwen frowned. How could she tell? They couldn’t all be bad. Why would anyone want to take her away from her home anyway? She was happy here, but now…

*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*

The horse was moving slow, slow enough that it hadn’t come into view around the turn at the top of the bank yet. Malwen held her breath. She wanted to run back to the safety of the cabin in the woods that she called home. Oma was gone. She had died just the past winter after being sick. Stig had explained how she was going to sleep a long time and come back as someone new. Malwen didn’t quite understand why it was taking her so long. She needed Oma more now than ever.

Stig didn’t know Malwen was by the road, but she was there because of him. He had been chopping firewood when the tree he had been chopping fell upon him. He wasn’t moving when Malwen found him after doing most of her own chores, but he was still breathing. She knew to check for that. She also knew he needed help, and she couldn’t get the tree off him by herself. She had taken him a flask of water and a blanket before leaving him. She took her own blanket to sit on while waiting for help to pass.

*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*

The horse and rider came into view. The horse was large and dark brown with a white diamond on its forehead. The rider wore armor and had long black hair. Did he look like someone who would help? Malwen frowned. How could she tell? She supposed she couldn’t, not just by looking anyway. Would it be safe to talk to him?

*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*
*Clip, clop*

The horse was almost to where she hid now. Stig may have told her to stay away from the road, but he wasn’t hurt when he said that. She stepped out into view.

*Clip, clop, clop, clop*

The horse stopped. Malwen looked up at the man riding the horse, and he looked back at her. He was an elf. That was a good sign, right? Malwen was an elf too. Stig and Oma said that the Gods had blessed them with her, even though they were human.

The elf dismounted. Malwen stepped back. The elf didn’t try to approach her anymore, kneeling instead on one knee so that he was face to face with her. “Hello, my name is Terellion. Are you lost? I don’t know of any houses in this area.”

Terellion seemed nice. “I’m not lost.”

“What is your name?”

“Malwen, and I’ve had seven and a half name days.” Name days had been much more celebrated when Oma was still alive.

“If you’re not lost, what are you doing out here alone, Malwen?”

“I need help. You’re not a bad person, right?”

“I’m not bad. I can try to help you. What do you need help with?”

“It’s Stig. He was cutting a tree and it fell on him. He was still breathing, but he wouldn’t wake up.”

Terellion frowned slightly. “Can you take me to Stig? I’ll see if I can get the tree off him, and get him moved to shelter. You do have a home here?”

Malwen nodded. She showed the way to Terellion, who led his horse off the road and to the trail to the house which was hidden by the bushes near the road. She tried not to run ahead, but found that Terellion could easily keep up with her. Stig and Oma never had been that fast.

Terellion left his horse near the house after they reached it, then told her to run to where Stig was. He would keep up, and he did.

Malwen frowned upon reaching Stig. He looked too pale, and hadn’t woken up to take his water. She sat next to his head. “Stig, wake up! I brought help. He says he’s not bad.”

Terellion knelt next to where Stig lie, and held his wrist. Frowning, he put his hand on Stig’s chest. Malwen watched, fearful of the words he said next.

“I’m sorry, Malwen. We’re too late. Stig is dead.”

“Will he come back as someone else like Oma? I don’t know why, but she hasn’t shown up yet.”

“Some people believe that they come back, yes. I think anything is possible, but the people who believe they’ll come back do not remember who they used to be when the do come back. That’s why Oma hasn’t shown up, and I doubt Stig would know to come back here either. Plus, he’d be a baby. He wouldn’t be able to take care of you like that.”

Malwen started crying.

“Malwen, shh,” Terellion moved closer to hug her. She let him. “I won’t leave you alone to fend for yourself. You know you can’t stay here alone, right?”

Malwen nodded, still crying.

“I’ll work on freeing his body so we can bury him. I want you to go to the house and get the things you want to take with you, okay?”

Malwen nodded again. Terellion wiped away her tears with his shirt. He really wasn’t a bad guy.

“Go on now. I’ll come get you when I’m done. You’ll be able to say goodbye before we go.”

She got up and started shuffling towards the house. She looked back once when she heard the ax hitting the tree. Terellion was using Stig’s ax to cut the tree off of him. Why hadn’t she thought of that? Even if she had, she doubted she’d have the strength to swing it hard enough to cut the tree. Stig would still be dead whether she found help or not.

She turned back around and headed towards the house to get her things.

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A Walk on the Beach

((My prompt word was ‘salt’, so I decided to write a beach story with salty ocean air.))

“A pleasant evening for a walk, Magister Embersun,” the adahi guarding the door said as he unlocked it and held it open for the mage to pass.

Xanaroth did not reply as he passed through the doorway, and was rather perturbed by the fact that the adahi had used his name. He showed his displeasure with a twitch of an ear which ruffled against the inside of his hood, and maintained his silence. Of course he had to identify himself to be able to go past this door, but that didn’t mean he wanted anyone to overhear who he was. He waited for the door to shut behind him before pulling back his hood.

She was already here, of course. Where he preferred to be punctual, she preferred to be early. She claimed it was staying a step ahead, and perhaps she was right. She stood some distance away on the beach, with her back to him while looking out over the waves. The salty air was lighter and fresher out here, where as there was a certain heaviness to it within the building.

Underlings. They could never get anything right.

He approached her, her back was still turned, but she looked exquisite even from behind. Despite his instincts screaming to beware of this one, he had already fallen for her. It was far too late to turn back now. She turned to face him as he neared. A light breeze blew the wisps of dark reddish brown hair that had fallen out of her bun across her face. Her bronze skin contrasted with the pale tan of her robes, and her violet-blue eyes regarded him.

“Good evening,” she said. Xanaroth thought he detected a hint of a smile behind her words.

He smiled genuinely, “Hello, my dear. You look beautiful tonight.”

She raised a brow, “Just tonight?” One corner of her mouth turned up in a mischievous grin.

Good. She’s just playing, but it always pays to be careful. “Every night and every day.”

She kissed his cheek, and took his hand. They began to walk along the beach. Xanaroth spared a glance back at the large, sprawling complex. It was a series of buildings, all connected either by sharing walls, or with halls built between them. This was the only private stretch of beach, located along the back wall of one of the large cafeterias, there were no windows on this side.

She spoke, drawing his attention back to her. How it could have drifted away in the first place? He did not know.

“Did you have any luck?”

Oh. That. “No. I’m afraid you are right. He doesn’t speak.”

“I know I’m right, but do you think he understands what is said, whether he can speak or not?”

“I’m not sure. If he does, he makes effort to avoid letting us in on that fact, which means he’s far more intelligent than the others believe. This was my first time trying to work with him directly. You said he tested positive?”

“Yes. He’s a mage. I saw it myself.”

“But someone uses physical punishment with him, but yet no one has put his hands in irons. Has he not tried to cast anything?”

“That’s the reason his hands aren’t covered. We’re waiting for him to try something. He hasn’t yet.”

Xanaroth shook his head, “Vallindra, it just doesn’t make sense. If he’s smart enough to have the ability to cast, then why doesn’t he?”

“Exactly. We’re stumped. He vocalizes, but nothing sounds like words.”

“Have you tried asking Zaelith to see if he can find any evidence of him casting or speaking in the past?”

“Zaelith doesn’t have the clearance to see him.”

“Maybe we could talk to the others to get that changed.”

“No. I don’t want Zaelith working on this. The more the seer of the past knows someone, the more he can see their past. I do not want him finding out I’m on the council. Besides, I’m pretty sure the rest of the council would say no as well. No seer has ever had that kind of clearance, and I doubt one ever will.”

Xanaroth nodded, “You’re right. I wasn’t thinking.” Every council member had their secrets. None of them would be too eager for their secrets to get out. Bringing the seer of the past to see the subject was out of the question. He could see that now. He decided to change the subject. “How is your research going? It must have been nice having a full day to dedicate to it without having to work with the lucaja.”

“It’s going.” She frowned slightly in the way she always did when she was slightly frustrated with her research. “My brother just left a fortnight ago with his new adahi from Hollowmont, so we know where the sword is, not that we’d ever get the town to give it up. The pyromancer you informed me about does show some promise of being able to recreate the staff. I’ve made a request with the others to grant him an adahi, and it was approved. They’re currently looking into matching an adahi with him. I haven’t had any leads on the others except the wand.”

“The wand? You found it?”

“I haven’t. I received a report from an adahi in Elenduil in which she mentioned her mage’s research, and requested a couple of books. I’m having them copied twice so that I can have my own copy as well. Maybe I’ll be able to beat him to it.”

“Elenduil? Is it Lord Melith’enddare?”

“His son. You’re not supposed to know anything about this, by the way.” She stopped, turning to face him as the waves lapped at the shore. “I only tell you because I like you. You may miss me if I have to go in search of it.”

“I would. So much. Maybe if you have to leave, I could go with you.”

“Magister, you have a class to teach and students who would question if you disappeared suddenly.”

“I could always say a family member was ill, and that I requested a temporary adahi to visit home.” He smiled. It was a common request within the mage city. Temporary adahis were often assigned for visits home, whether a family member was ill or not.

She smiled and put her arms around him. “Maybe you could go with me after all.”

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The Sword, Book 1 of the Knights of Naren

My first book, The Sword, is coming to Kindle on June 9th! I’ve written some short stories set in the same world, and posted a sample chapter last year. It is a gay elf fantasy/romance. The pre-order is up now, and the paperback version will follow a couple of days after the Kindle release.

I’m already working on the second book, The Staff. I’m hoping to have it done early next year. If all goes well, the third book should be following on the second book’s heels.

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Sand

Land. More like sand. Sorias hated the stuff, especially at this port. His pointed purple ears both twitched. Did they remember him from last time? If he was anyone else on the ship, he’d doubt that they would, but Sorias was one of the elves from the Glimarin Forest, and as such, had a distinctive purplish tint to his skin. Again, this wouldn’t be a problem as people in this port were accustomed to visitors from all over Naren— Except elves from the Glimarin Forest, and that was the problem. Sorias was different because he had left. Not that he hadn’t been different before leaving, and that was a contributing factor into why he left in the first place.

The Glimarin elves kept to themselves, rarely venturing outside the forest and away from their precious trees. Sorias wanted to explore. The insular communities of the Glimarin elves gave him little opportunity to do that. He wondered what was over the mountains or across the sea, until the urge to find out became stronger than his urge to stay put. There were other reasons too, but underneath it all, Sorias never felt he fit in with the others.

Not that he fit in very well any where else, and especially not in this port. He walked away from the dock and onto the sand of the beach next to the pier where the ship was. It was just a small stretch of sand to the next pier, but it was quiet. He doubled around under the pier, out of sight of the people above and sat on an old crate that rested half buried in the sand. It would be better if he didn’t go out to explore this town.

The captain, oblivious to the trouble he had caused last time, had insisted he go take the day off. He wasn’t sure which was worse; her ire, or the ire of cheated gamblers. He’d rather deal with sand getting in his shoes and everywhere else than find out, and decided to spend the rest of the day under the pier out of the sun.

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Illness in Elenduil

Ellorian Melith’endre frowned as he looked down at the man in the bed. The elder Whitemarsh’s labored breathing and pallid look were not good signs. The winter illness was not going easy on the people of Elenduil, and medical supplies were running low not only from the high demand, but also because of a severely dry summer the previous year.

Nor was he the best healer. His magics were much stronger in arcane applications such as translocation, illusion, and ward weaving. He was especially good in unweaving wards, and felt that was part of the reason they had kept him in Thril Gandir so long, likely as a test to see if he was anything like his sister who had similar gifts and had tried to escape the mage city more than once. He wasn’t. He had the patience to wait for an adahi to be assigned to him. His father was relying on him to be able to inherit the province, and the people would depend on his leadership and protection some day.

For now they only depended on his healing gifts. He had learned the art of mixing herbs to supplement his healing magic. As half of his garden had wilted, and died in the dry heat of the past summer, he had very little to spare. He took a deep breath, clearing his mind and held his hand over the old man’s chest. He closed his eyes and whispered some words while imagining the congestion releasing. The old man coughed weakly.

He opened his eyes, glancing up towards the door where the man’s daughter stood. She had already lost her husband to the illness, though she had come through it fine. Her unborn child was still growing at a good rate as well.

Tough decisions had to be made this year. He went to his bag and took out one of the small glass bottles. It was a diluted solution. He saved the full-strength medication for the young, or a family’s only provider. It was unfair that her father was likely to die as her husband did, but she would live. He wished he could help the people of his father’s province more, but there was nothing more to be done. All the letters he had written were either unanswered or had been responded to with a letter of rejection in his request for help, and always for the same reason. Supplies were short elsewhere as well.

At least the diluted solution would give him some chance, though Ellorian felt it was being started too late. The illness had progressed too far, and in that case, not even the full-strength solution would be much help. He walked to the woman and placed the bottle in her hands. “Two tablespoons each day. One in the morning, one in the evening. You may need to use a dropper like you did with your husband.”

She frowned, “It’s the same thing?”

He nodded.

“It didn’t work for Dhiren.”

“It worked for you. I hope it works for him as well. I’ve done all I can.” He closed his bag, and started towards the front room of the small house.

She continued to frown, but nodded. “I hope so as well.”

“Send word to me at the castle if there’s any change. I have a long list of people to visit, but you know I make time for everyone.” He grabbed his cloak from the hook, and wrapped it around his shoulders.

She nodded silently as he headed out the door.

He didn’t glance back. It was hard enough knowing he was failing his people without seeing the hopelessness on their faces. He climbed into the carriage, and signaled the driver to take them to the next house on the list. He sighed as he leaned back in his seat.

His adahi, Rissa, sat opposite from him. She looked up from her book. “Not good, I assume.”

“No, not good. I don’t know how any of them will trust me after this. I’m supposed to be able to help them.”

“I think even the best healers are being challenged this winter, and you are helping some. I’m still here.”

Rissa had caught the illness fairly early on as well. As required, he had to notify Thril Gandir that his adahi was incapable of performing her duties, even if it was temporary. For the week that Rissa was in bed, they had sent an adahi to fill in. He was young, and Ellorian was sure he was freshly graduated from the training academy. He and Rissa had built up trust, and had an understanding. The new adahi had his head full of rules, and would not bend on any of them. Ellorian went along with it, though having an armed man in a patient’s bedroom was not his idea of a relaxing environment for the patient, or for him. He had been quite happy when Rissa was able to return to her duties.

He sighed again. “I just wish I could do more.”

“You’re doing your best with what you have. You can’t do more than that.”

He nodded. He supposed she was right about that. He turned his head to look out the window. Rissa looked down at her book again.

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Julan’s Ranger Log

Faeris’s parents came to visit. Luckily, we had warning, and we had plenty of time to clean up the cabin, not that it was dirty, but there were things all around that his parents probably shouldn’t see. So we had to put those all away in boxes, and we hid them under the bed.

I think the visit went well. I thought it was just going to be his father, but his mother came too. I made sure I was wearing good clothes that weren’t too tight and covered everything, and I think it was doubly impressing that they happened to arrive while I was practicing with my crossbow. I looked like a perfect, dedicated ranger. Well, I am a ranger, but it’s not all I think about all the time like some people, and that’s fine. I like having interests outside being a ranger.

Anyway, I looked like one of the people who only like being a ranger, which I think impressed them, so I decided to go with it. They asked me about my previous experience, and I couldn’t really tell them the truth so I said something about being with the Longwood unit in Eversong because I’m pretty sure they don’t know about ranger units.

They seemed satisfied with that. Faeris almost laughed because of the name I came up with. I decided I had to really watch what I said after that. I didn’t want him to start giggling when I was trying to be serious.

I’m a little worried that his parents will want to look up my parents. His father alone probably wouldn’t have thought to ask, but his mother was very nosy. She wanted to know who my parents were and what they did and all that. I kind of left out the part where I haven’t seen them in almost a century. I should have prepared ahead of time and had some fictional family made up who all died or something. Some average family too, not my snobby rich parents. They had me engaged when I was 20! Well, it was going to be a long engagement, but still. It was to a girl, and even back then, I knew. I had tried to tell them too, but I think that’s part of the reason they decided to set an engagement for me that early. Anyway, I want nothing to do with them because they can’t accept me for me.

I figured Faeris’s parents might be a bit the same way, though they seemed okay with me, so I hope they don’t try to get him to marry a girl. I won’t allow it!
Now I’m afraid his mother will try to talk to my parents or poke around too much and find out things I’d rather not have them know. I don’t want him to have problems with them. I’d rather they just leave us alone.

But there’s another fear too. If his parents poke around and my parents find out where I am, then they might want to see me. I let go of them a long time ago. I don’t want them back in my life. They couldn’t accept who I am, so I left and that’s that. They even had another son to replace me, so they shouldn’t even care now.

Anyway, the visit with Faeris’s parents wasn’t so bad. I kind of like them, and I think they liked me. Still, I’m glad it’s over.

This weekend is the Spring dance at the school. I think that will be fun. I can’t wait. We both had to get new things to wear, so we went to Silvermoon. We bought some more candles while we were there. I think they’re funny.

It’s kind of weird to think that a couple of years ago I wouldn’t have dreamed of having an actual steady boyfriend. I mean, I had friends that I slept with sometimes on a regular basis, and lots of repeat paying customers, but never a boyfriend. Even when Faeris and I started out together, it was more like we were just friends who had fun, but now it’s more. The longer I’m with him, the more right it feels to only be with him. And at the same time it’s weird because of all the problems with my parents and stuff, I don’t think I really knew what love was. I knew what friendship was, and while I love my friends, that’s different from romantic love.

I think I know now.

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